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"F*ck the EU": neocons show EU its real place and endanger the US national security

Victoria "f*ck the EU" Nuland  appointed a neoliberal Ukrainian prime minister and organized coup d'état to install him in power

( Making Ukraine "Khaganate of Nuland"; "Khaganate of Nuland" is an apt amalgam of khanate and Kagan, a hint on Victoria's notorious neo-con husband Robert Kagan by Asia Times ).

Future Prime Minister – Arseniy Yatsenyuk (rechristened to “Yats”) with his patron Victoria Nuland. Two statists -- Taygibok (Co-founder of far right Socialist-National Party, later renamed into Svoboda party) and Klitschko (leader of pro-Germany, Merkel-financed Udar Party who was just thrown under the bus) are present

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[May 19, 2019] MP Balitsky called Foreign Minister Klimkin a rat jumping the ship

May 17, 2019 | riafan.ru

The Minister of foreign Affairs of Ukraine Pavlo Klimkin tried to advertise in press the fact that he that wrote the resignation which will send to the Verkhovna Rada on May 20 -- the day of inauguration of the newly elected President of the country Vladimir Zelensky.

The Deputy of the Ukrainian Parliament Evgeny Balitsky told in an exclusive interview to Federal News Agency that everything that occurs in his homeland recently, reminds flight of rats from the ship.

"Now all run up, the administration leaves all systems, they, figuratively speaking, take away even the coffee, slippers and caps from the bar, -- he noted. -- We have never seen such a humiliating transition of power. It all. We saw similar episodes after (Viktor) Yushchenko and (Viktor) Yanukovich, but never this behaviour was such rabid, widespread and ugly"

Such, as the representative of party "Oppositional block" called it, "swine behaviour", you know, "digging out dirt from under nails in public" never occurred before. He noted that the current President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, leaving, appointed new people to several departments.

"He does, you know, things that are not what the President, but any decent man would never do because this is just too ugly to do - complained the MP. -- It make sense to go beautifully, humanly, with dignity! And today that rats like Klimkin make statements how much they have done for people. For us, it's a lost five years. Just lost."

The deputy stressed that Klimkin hardly ashamed of their work. "These people don't know the word 'shame,' -- Balitsky said. -- These are people who for five years in the country destroyed the relations with all neighbors. I'm talking not only about the Russian Federation! We quarreled with Hungarians, Poles, Belarusians! We now have a conflict even with the Americans. You see, how much harm this gang of American henchmen, have done to our poor country!"

The Deputy of Rada explained that "all these people" -- are corrupt businessmen who used Ukraine to earn quick money.

"They invested money in the Maidan and came to power to get a royal return on the investment, -- Balitsky added. -- For these people the word "shame" does not exists, this is a completely foreign concept. And they are now leaving, are trying figuratively speaking to take the last pair of Slippers from their rooms, everything from the bar, grab from the buffet a couple of sandwiches, as Zelensky said."

The MP concluded that this is a very humiliating process for all Ukrainians, and he is personally ashamed of the power and statehood of his country.

Author: Marat Lashkin

[May 19, 2019] President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko by his decree released Oleksandr Turchynov from the post of Secretary of the national security and defense Council of Ukraine

That's that second key figure of EuroMaydan who bite the dust. "Snipergate" hero Parubiy is still standing.
May 19, 2019 | 112.ua

President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko by his decree released Oleksandr Turchynov from the post of Secretary of the national security and defense Council of Ukraine. This was reported on the website of the presidential administration.

"To release Turchynov Alexander Valentinovich from the post of Secretary of the national security and defense Council of Ukraine," the decree says.

Turchynov resigned the day before. The reason for dismissal - termination of powers of the acting President of Ukraine who appointed Turchinov.

Secretary of the NSDC Turchinov has been working since December 2014. Prior to that, he worked in the Verkhovna Rada, in the spring of the same year, acting President of Ukraine.

[May 11, 2019] Ukrainian efforts to sabotage Trump backfire by KENNETH P. VOGEL and DAVID STERN

Notable quotes:
"... Almost as quickly as Chalupa's efforts attracted the attention of the Ukrainian Embassy and Democrats, she also found herself the subject of some unwanted attention from overseas. ..."
"... Chalupa, though, indicated in an email that was later hacked and released by WikiLeaks that the Open World Leadership Center "put me on the program to speak specifically about Paul Manafort." ..."
"... In the email, which was sent in early May to then-DNC communications director Luis Miranda, Chalupa noted that she had extended an invitation to the Library of Congress forum to veteran Washington investigative reporter Michael Isikoff. Two days before the event, he had published a story for Yahoo News revealing the unraveling of a $26 million deal between Manafort and a Russian oligarch related to a telecommunications venture in Ukraine. And Chalupa wrote in the email she'd been "working with for the past few weeks" with Isikoff "and connected him to the Ukrainians" at the event. ..."
"... A DNC official stressed that Chalupa was a consultant paid to do outreach for the party's political department, not a researcher. She undertook her investigations into Trump, Manafort and Russia on her own, and the party did not incorporate her findings in its dossiers on the subjects, the official said, stressing that the DNC had been building robust research books on Trump and his ties to Russia long before Chalupa began sounding alarms. ..."
Jan 11, 2017 | www.politico.com

Manafort's work for Yanukovych caught the attention of a veteran Democratic operative named Alexandra Chalupa, who had worked in the White House Office of Public Liaison during the Clinton administration. Chalupa went on to work as a staffer, then as a consultant, for Democratic National Committee. The DNC paid her $412,000 from 2004 to June 2016, according to Federal Election Commission records, though she also was paid by other clients during that time, including Democratic campaigns and the DNC's arm for engaging expatriate Democrats around the world.

A daughter of Ukrainian immigrants who maintains strong ties to the Ukrainian-American diaspora and the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine, Chalupa, a lawyer by training, in 2014 was doing pro bono work for another client interested in the Ukrainian crisis and began researching Manafort's role in Yanukovych's rise, as well as his ties to the pro-Russian oligarchs who funded Yanukovych's political party.

In an interview this month, Chalupa told Politico she had developed a network of sources in Kiev and Washington, including investigative journalists, government officials and private intelligence operatives. While her consulting work at the DNC this past election cycle centered on mobilizing ethnic communities -- including Ukrainian-Americans -- she said that, when Trump's unlikely presidential campaign began surging in late 2015, she began focusing more on the research, and expanded it to include Trump's ties to Russia, as well.

She occasionally shared her findings with officials from the DNC and Clinton's campaign, Chalupa said. In January 2016 -- months before Manafort had taken any role in Trump's campaign -- Chalupa told a senior DNC official that, when it came to Trump's campaign, "I felt there was a Russia connection," Chalupa recalled. "And that, if there was, that we can expect Paul Manafort to be involved in this election," said Chalupa, who at the time also was warning leaders in the Ukrainian-American community that Manafort was "Putin's political brain for manipulating U.S. foreign policy and elections."

he said she shared her concern with Ukraine's ambassador to the U.S., Valeriy Chaly, and one of his top aides, Oksana Shulyar, during a March 2016 meeting at the Ukrainian Embassy. According to someone briefed on the meeting, Chaly said that Manafort was very much on his radar, but that he wasn't particularly concerned about the operative's ties to Trump since he didn't believe Trump stood much of a chance of winning the GOP nomination, let alone the presidency.

That was not an uncommon view at the time, and, perhaps as a result, Trump's ties to Russia -- let alone Manafort's -- were not the subject of much attention.
That all started to change just four days after Chalupa's meeting at the embassy, when it was reported that Trump had in fact hired Manafort, suggesting that Chalupa may have been on to something. She quickly found herself in high demand. The day after Manafort's hiring was revealed, she briefed the DNC's communications staff on Manafort, Trump and their ties to Russia, according to an operative familiar with the situation.

A former DNC staffer described the exchange as an "informal conversation," saying "'briefing' makes it sound way too formal," and adding, "We were not directing or driving her work on this." Yet, the former DNC staffer and the operative familiar with the situation agreed that with the DNC's encouragement, Chalupa asked embassy staff to try to arrange an interview in which Poroshenko might discuss Manafort's ties to Yanukovych.

While the embassy declined that request, officials there became "helpful" in Chalupa's efforts, she said, explaining that she traded information and leads with them. "If I asked a question, they would provide guidance, or if there was someone I needed to follow up with." But she stressed, "There were no documents given, nothing like that."

Chalupa said the embassy also worked directly with reporters researching Trump, Manafort and Russia to point them in the right directions. She added, though, "they were being very protective and not speaking to the press as much as they should have. I think they were being careful because their situation was that they had to be very, very careful because they could not pick sides. It's a political issue, and they didn't want to get involved politically because they couldn't."

Shulyar vehemently denied working with reporters or with Chalupa on anything related to Trump or Manafort, explaining "we were stormed by many reporters to comment on this subject, but our clear and adamant position was not to give any comment [and] not to interfere into the campaign affairs."

Both Shulyar and Chalupa said the purpose of their initial meeting was to organize a June reception at the embassy to promote Ukraine. According to the embassy's website, the event highlighted female Ukrainian leaders, featuring speeches by Ukrainian parliamentarian Hanna Hopko, who discussed "Ukraine's fight against the Russian aggression in Donbas," and longtime Hillary Clinton confidante Melanne Verveer, who worked for Clinton in the State Department and was a vocal surrogate during the presidential campaign.

Shulyar said her work with Chalupa "didn't involve the campaign," and she specifically stressed that "We have never worked to research and disseminate damaging information about Donald Trump and Paul Manafort."

But Andrii Telizhenko, who worked as a political officer in the Ukrainian Embassy under Shulyar, said she instructed him to help Chalupa research connections between Trump, Manafort and Russia. "Oksana said that if I had any information, or knew other people who did, then I should contact Chalupa," recalled Telizhenko, who is now a political consultant in Kiev. "They were coordinating an investigation with the Hillary team on Paul Manafort with Alexandra Chalupa," he said, adding "Oksana was keeping it all quiet," but "the embassy worked very closely with" Chalupa.

In fact, sources familiar with the effort say that Shulyar specifically called Telizhenko into a meeting with Chalupa to provide an update on an American media outlet's ongoing investigation into Manafort.

Telizhenko recalled that Chalupa told him and Shulyar that, "If we can get enough information on Paul [Manafort] or Trump's involvement with Russia, she can get a hearing in Congress by September."

Chalupa confirmed that, a week after Manafort's hiring was announced, she discussed the possibility of a congressional investigation with a foreign policy legislative assistant in the office of Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio), who co-chairs the Congressional Ukrainian Caucus. But, Chalupa said, "It didn't go anywhere."

Asked about the effort, the Kaptur legislative assistant called it a "touchy subject" in an internal email to colleagues that was accidentally forwarded to Politico.

Kaptur's office later emailed an official statement explaining that the lawmaker is backing a bill to create an independent commission to investigate "possible outside interference in our elections." The office added "at this time, the evidence related to this matter points to Russia, but Congresswoman Kaptur is concerned with any evidence of foreign entities interfering in our elections."

•••

Almost as quickly as Chalupa's efforts attracted the attention of the Ukrainian Embassy and Democrats, she also found herself the subject of some unwanted attention from overseas.

Within a few weeks of her initial meeting at the embassy with Shulyar and Chaly, Chalupa on April 20 received the first of what became a series of messages from the administrators of her private Yahoo email account, warning her that "state-sponsored actors" were trying to hack into her emails.

She kept up her crusade, appearing on a panel a week after the initial hacking message to discuss her research on Manafort with a group of Ukrainian investigative journalists gathered at the Library of Congress for a program sponsored by a U.S. congressional agency called the Open World Leadership Center.

Center spokeswoman Maura Shelden stressed that her group is nonpartisan and ensures "that our delegations hear from both sides of the aisle, receiving bipartisan information." She said the Ukrainian journalists in subsequent days met with Republican officials in North Carolina and elsewhere. And she said that, before the Library of Congress event, "Open World's program manager for Ukraine did contact Chalupa to advise her that Open World is a nonpartisan agency of the Congress."

Chalupa, though, indicated in an email that was later hacked and released by WikiLeaks that the Open World Leadership Center "put me on the program to speak specifically about Paul Manafort."

In the email, which was sent in early May to then-DNC communications director Luis Miranda, Chalupa noted that she had extended an invitation to the Library of Congress forum to veteran Washington investigative reporter Michael Isikoff. Two days before the event, he had published a story for Yahoo News revealing the unraveling of a $26 million deal between Manafort and a Russian oligarch related to a telecommunications venture in Ukraine. And Chalupa wrote in the email she'd been "working with for the past few weeks" with Isikoff "and connected him to the Ukrainians" at the event.

Isikoff, who accompanied Chalupa to a reception at the Ukrainian Embassy immediately after the Library of Congress event, declined to comment.

Chalupa further indicated in her hacked May email to the DNC that she had additional sensitive information about Manafort that she intended to share "offline" with Miranda and DNC research director Lauren Dillon, including "a big Trump component you and Lauren need to be aware of that will hit in next few weeks and something I'm working on you should be aware of." Explaining that she didn't feel comfortable sharing the intel over email, Chalupa attached a screenshot of a warning from Yahoo administrators about "state-sponsored" hacking on her account, explaining, "Since I started digging into Manafort these messages have been a daily occurrence on my yahoo account despite changing my password often."

Dillon and Miranda declined to comment.

A DNC official stressed that Chalupa was a consultant paid to do outreach for the party's political department, not a researcher. She undertook her investigations into Trump, Manafort and Russia on her own, and the party did not incorporate her findings in its dossiers on the subjects, the official said, stressing that the DNC had been building robust research books on Trump and his ties to Russia long before Chalupa began sounding alarms.

Nonetheless, Chalupa's hacked email reportedly escalated concerns among top party officials, hardening their conclusion that Russia likely was behind the cyber intrusions with which the party was only then beginning to grapple.

Chalupa left the DNC after the Democratic convention in late July to focus fulltime on her research into Manafort, Trump and Russia . She said she provided off-the-record information and guidance to "a lot of journalists" working on stories related to Manafort and Trump's Russia connections, despite what she described as escalating harassment.

About a month-and-a-half after Chalupa first started receiving hacking alerts, someone broke into her car outside the Northwest Washington home where she lives with her husband and three young daughters, she said. They "rampaged it, basically, but didn't take anything valuable -- left money, sunglasses, $1,200 worth of golf clubs," she said, explaining she didn't file a police report after that incident because she didn't connect it to her research and the hacking.

But by the time a similar vehicle break-in occurred involving two family cars, she was convinced that it was a Russia-linked intimidation campaign. The police report on the latter break-in noted that "both vehicles were unlocked by an unknown person and the interior was ransacked, with papers and the garage openers scattered throughout the cars. Nothing was taken from the vehicles."

Then, early in the morning on another day, a woman "wearing white flowers in her hair" tried to break into her family's home at 1:30 a.m., Chalupa said. Shulyar told Chalupa that the mysterious incident bore some of the hallmarks of intimidation campaigns used against foreigners in Russia, according to Chalupa.

"This is something that they do to U.S. diplomats, they do it to Ukrainians. Like, this is how they operate. They break into people's homes. They harass people. They're theatrical about it," Chalupa said. "They must have seen when I was writing to the DNC staff, outlining who Manafort was, pulling articles, saying why it was significant, and painting the bigger picture."

In a Yahoo News story naming Chalupa as one of 16 "ordinary people" who "shaped the 2016 election," Isikoff wrote that after Chalupa left the DNC, FBI agents investigating the hacking questioned her and examined her laptop and smartphone.

Chalupa this month told Politico that, as her research and role in the election started becoming more public, she began receiving death threats, along with continued alerts of state-sponsored hacking. But she said, "None of this has scared me off."

•••

While it's not uncommon for outside operatives to serve as intermediaries between governments and reporters, one of the more damaging Russia-related stories for the Trump campaign -- and certainly for Manafort -- can be traced more directly to the Ukrainian government.

Documents released by an independent Ukrainian government agency -- and publicized by a parliamentarian -- appeared to show $12.7 million in cash payments that were earmarked for Manafort by the Russia-aligned party of the deposed former president, Yanukovych.

The New York Times, in the August story revealing the ledgers' existence, reported that the payments earmarked for Manafort were "a focus" of an investigation by Ukrainian anti-corruption officials, while CNN reported days later that the FBI was pursuing an overlapping inquiry.

Clinton's campaign seized on the story to advance Democrats' argument that Trump's campaign was closely linked to Russia. The ledger represented "more troubling connections between Donald Trump's team and pro-Kremlin elements in Ukraine," Robby Mook, Clinton's campaign manager, said in a statement. He demanded that Trump "disclose campaign chair Paul Manafort's and all other campaign employees' and advisers' ties to Russian or pro-Kremlin entities, including whether any of Trump's employees or advisers are currently representing and or being paid by them."

A former Ukrainian investigative journalist and current parliamentarian named Serhiy Leshchenko, who was elected in 2014 as part of Poroshenko's party, held a news conference to highlight the ledgers, and to urge Ukrainian and American law enforcement to aggressively investigate Manafort.

"I believe and understand the basis of these payments are totally against the law -- we have the proof from these books," Leshchenko said during the news conference, which attracted international media coverage. "If Mr. Manafort denies any allegations, I think he has to be interrogated into this case and prove his position that he was not involved in any misconduct on the territory of Ukraine," Leshchenko added.

Manafort denied receiving any off-books cash from Yanukovych's Party of Regions, and said that he had never been contacted about the ledger by Ukrainian or American investigators, later telling POLITICO "I was just caught in the crossfire."

According to a series of memos reportedly compiled for Trump's opponents by a former British intelligence agent, Yanukovych, in a secret meeting with Putin on the day after the Times published its report, admitted that he had authorized "substantial kickback payments to Manafort." But according to the report, which was published Tuesday by BuzzFeed but remains unverified. Yanukovych assured Putin "that there was no documentary trail left behind which could provide clear evidence of this" -- an alleged statement that seemed to implicitly question the authenticity of the ledger.

The scrutiny around the ledgers -- combined with that from other stories about his Ukraine work -- proved too much, and he stepped down from the Trump campaign less than a week after the Times story.

At the time, Leshchenko suggested that his motivation was partly to undermine Trump. "For me, it was important to show not only the corruption aspect, but that he is [a] pro-Russian candidate who can break the geopolitical balance in the world," Leshchenko told the Financial Times about two weeks after his news conference. The newspaper noted that Trump's candidacy had spurred "Kiev's wider political leadership to do something they would never have attempted before: intervene, however indirectly, in a U.S. election," and the story quoted Leshchenko asserting that the majority of Ukraine's politicians are "on Hillary Clinton's side."

But by this month, Leshchenko was seeking to recast his motivation, telling Politico, "I didn't care who won the U.S. elections. This was a decision for the American voters to decide." His goal in highlighting the ledgers, he said was "to raise these issues on a political level and emphasize the importance of the investigation."

In a series of answers provided to Politico, a spokesman for Poroshenko distanced his administration from both Leshchenko's efforts and those of the agency that reLeshchenko Leshchenko leased the ledgers, The National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine. It was created in 2014 as a condition for Ukraine to receive aid from the U.S. and the European Union, and it signed an evidence-sharing agreement with the FBI in late June -- less than a month and a half before it released the ledgers.

The bureau is "fully independent," the Poroshenko spokesman said, adding that when it came to the presidential administration there was "no targeted action against Manafort." He added "as to Serhiy Leshchenko, he positions himself as a representative of internal opposition in the Bloc of Petro Poroshenko's faction, despite [the fact that] he belongs to the faction," the spokesman said, adding, "it was about him personally who pushed [the anti-corruption bureau] to proceed with investigation on Manafort."

But an operative who has worked extensively in Ukraine, including as an adviser to Poroshenko, said it was highly unlikely that either Leshchenko or the anti-corruption bureau would have pushed the issue without at least tacit approval from Poroshenko or his closest allies.

"It was something that Poroshenko was probably aware of and could have stopped if he wanted to," said the operative.

And, almost immediately after Trump's stunning victory over Clinton, questions began mounting about the investigations into the ledgers -- and the ledgers themselves.

An official with the anti-corruption bureau told a Ukrainian newspaper, "Mr. Manafort does not have a role in this case."

And, while the anti-corruption bureau told Politico late last month that a "general investigation [is] still ongoing" of the ledger, it said Manafort is not a target of the investigation. "As he is not the Ukrainian citizen, [the anti-corruption bureau] by the law couldn't investigate him personally," the bureau said in a statement.

Some Poroshenko critics have gone further, suggesting that the bureau is backing away from investigating because the ledgers might have been doctored or even forged.

Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, a Ukrainian former diplomat who served as the country's head of security under Poroshenko but is now affiliated with a leading opponent of Poroshenko, said it was fishy that "only one part of the black ledger appeared." He asked, "Where is the handwriting analysis?" and said it was "crazy" to announce an investigation based on the ledgers. He met last month in Washington with Trump allies, and said, "of course they all recognize that our [anti-corruption bureau] intervened in the presidential campaign."

And in an interview this week, Manafort, who re-emerged as an informal advisor to Trump after Election Day, suggested that the ledgers were inauthentic and called their publication "a politically motivated false attack on me. My role as a paid consultant was public. There was nothing off the books, but the way that this was presented tried to make it look shady."

He added that he felt particularly wronged by efforts to cast his work in Ukraine as pro-Russian, arguing "all my efforts were focused on helping Ukraine move into Europe and the West." He specifically cited his work on denuclearizing the country and on the European Union trade and political pact that Yanukovych spurned before fleeing to Russia. "In no case was I ever involved in anything that would be contrary to U.S. interests," Manafort said.

Yet Russia seemed to come to the defense of Manafort and Trump last month, when a spokeswoman for Russia's Foreign Ministry charged that the Ukrainian government used the ledgers as a political weapon.

"Ukraine seriously complicated the work of Trump's election campaign headquarters by planting information according to which Paul Manafort, Trump's campaign chairman, allegedly accepted money from Ukrainian oligarchs," Maria Zakharova said at a news briefing, according to a transcript of her remarks posted on the Foreign Ministry's website. "All of you have heard this remarkable story," she told assembled reporters.

•••

Beyond any efforts to sabotage Trump, Ukrainian officials didn't exactly extend a hand of friendship to the GOP nominee during the campaign.

The ambassador, Chaly, penned an op-ed for The Hill, in which he chastised Trump for a confusing series of statements in which the GOP candidate at one point expressed a willingness to consider recognizing Russia's annexation of the Ukrainian territory of Crimea as legitimate. The op-ed made some in the embassy uneasy, sources said.

"That was like too close for comfort, even for them," said Chalupa. "That was something that was as risky as they were going to be."

Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk warned on Facebook that Trump had "challenged the very values of the free world."

Ukraine's minister of internal affairs, Arsen Avakov, piled on, trashing Trump on Twitter in July as a "clown" and asserting that Trump is "an even bigger danger to the US than terrorism."

Avakov, in a Facebook post, lashed out at Trump for his confusing Crimea comments, calling the assessment the "diagnosis of a dangerous misfit," according to a translated screenshot featured in one media report, though he later deleted the post. He called Trump "dangerous for Ukraine and the US" and noted that Manafort worked with Yanukovych when the former Ukrainian leader "fled to Russia through Crimea. Where would Manafort lead Trump?"

The Trump-Ukraine relationship grew even more fraught in September with reports that the GOP nominee had snubbed Poroshenko on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, where the Ukrainian president tried to meet both major party candidates, but scored only a meeting with Clinton.

Telizhenko, the former embassy staffer, said that, during the primaries, Chaly, the country's ambassador in Washington, had actually instructed the embassy not to reach out to Trump's campaign, even as it was engaging with those of Clinton and Trump's leading GOP rival, Ted Cruz.

"We had an order not to talk to the Trump team, because he was critical of Ukraine and the government and his critical position on Crimea and the conflict," said Telizhenko. "I was yelled at when I proposed to talk to Trump," he said, adding, "The ambassador said not to get involved -- Hillary is going to win."

This account was confirmed by Nalyvaichenko, the former diplomat and security chief now affiliated with a Poroshenko opponent, who said, "The Ukrainian authorities closed all doors and windows -- this is from the Ukrainian side." He called the strategy "bad and short-sighted."

Andriy Artemenko, a Ukrainian parliamentarian associated with a conservative opposition party, did meet with Trump's team during the campaign and said he personally offered to set up similar meetings for Chaly but was rebuffed.

"It was clear that they were supporting Hillary Clinton's candidacy," Artemenko said. "They did everything from organizing meetings with the Clinton team, to publicly supporting her, to criticizing Trump. I think that they simply didn't meet because they thought that Hillary would win."

Shulyar rejected the characterizations that the embassy had a ban on interacting with Trump, instead explaining that it "had different diplomats assigned for dealing with different teams tailoring the content and messaging. So it was not an instruction to abstain from the engagement but rather an internal discipline for diplomats not to get involved into a field she or he was not assigned to, but where another colleague was involved."

And she pointed out that Chaly traveled to the GOP convention in Cleveland in late July and met with members of Trump's foreign policy team "to highlight the importance of Ukraine and the support of it by the U.S."

Despite the outreach, Trump's campaign in Cleveland gutted a proposed amendment to the Republican Party platform that called for the U.S. to provide "lethal defensive weapons" for Ukraine to defend itself against Russian incursion, backers of the measure charged.

The outreach ramped up after Trump's victory. Shulyar pointed out that Poroshenko was among the first foreign leaders to call to congratulate Trump. And she said that, since Election Day, Chaly has met with close Trump allies, including Sens. Jeff Sessions, Trump's nominee for attorney general, and Bob Corker, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, while the ambassador accompanied Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze, Ukraine's vice prime minister for European and Euro-Atlantic integration, to a round of Washington meetings with Rep. Tom Marino (R-Pa.), an early Trump backer, and Jim DeMint, president of The Heritage Foundation, which played a prominent role in Trump's transition.

•••

Many Ukrainian officials and operatives and their American allies see Trump's inauguration this month as an existential threat to the country, made worse, they admit, by the dissemination of the secret ledger, the antagonistic social media posts and the perception that the embassy meddled against -- or at least shut out -- Trump.

"It's really bad. The [Poroshenko] administration right now is trying to re-coordinate communications," said Telizhenko, adding, "The Trump organization doesn't want to talk to our administration at all."

During Nalyvaichenko's trip to Washington last month, he detected lingering ill will toward Ukraine from some, and lack of interest from others, he recalled. "Ukraine is not on the top of the list, not even the middle," he said.

Poroshenko's allies are scrambling to figure out how to build a relationship with Trump, who is known for harboring and prosecuting grudges for years.

A delegation of Ukrainian parliamentarians allied with Poroshenko last month traveled to Washington partly to try to make inroads with the Trump transition team, but they were unable to secure a meeting, according to a Washington foreign policy operative familiar with the trip. And operatives in Washington and Kiev say that after the election, Poroshenko met in Kiev with top executives from the Washington lobbying firm BGR -- including Ed Rogers and Lester Munson -- about how to navigate the Trump regime.

Weeks later, BGR reported to the Department of Justice that the government of Ukraine would pay the firm $50,000 a month to "provide strategic public relations and government affairs counsel," including "outreach to U.S. government officials, non-government organizations, members of the media and other individuals."

Firm spokesman Jeffrey Birnbaum suggested that "pro-Putin oligarchs" were already trying to sow doubts about BGR's work with Poroshenko. While the firm maintains close relationships with GOP congressional leaders, several of its principals were dismissive or sharply critical of Trump during the GOP primary, which could limit their effectiveness lobbying the new administration.

The Poroshenko regime's standing with Trump is considered so dire that the president's allies after the election actually reached out to make amends with -- and even seek assistance from -- Manafort, according to two operatives familiar with Ukraine's efforts to make inroads with Trump.

Meanwhile, Poroshenko's rivals are seeking to capitalize on his dicey relationship with Trump's team. Some are pressuring him to replace Chaly, a close ally of Poroshenko's who is being blamed by critics in Kiev and Washington for implementing -- if not engineering -- the country's anti-Trump efforts, according to Ukrainian and U.S. politicians and operatives interviewed for this story. They say that several potential Poroshenko opponents have been through Washington since the election seeking audiences of their own with Trump allies, though most have failed to do do so.

"None of the Ukrainians have any access to Trump -- they are all desperate to get it, and are willing to pay big for it," said one American consultant whose company recently met in Washington with Yuriy Boyko, a former vice prime minister under Yanukovych. Boyko, who like Yanukovych has a pro-Russian worldview, is considering a presidential campaign of his own, and his representatives offered "to pay a shit-ton of money" to get access to Trump and his inaugural events, according to the consultant.

The consultant turned down the work, explaining, "It sounded shady, and we don't want to get in the middle of that kind of stuff."

[May 10, 2019] Looks like Nuland participated in Spygate (aka Russiagate)

May 03, 2019 | www.theepochtimes.com

Originally from: Spygate The True Story of Collusion [Infographic] by Jeff Carlson ( October 12, 2018 Updated: May 3, 2019 )

State Department

The State Department, with its many contacts within foreign governments, became a conduit for the flow of information. The transfer of Christopher Steele's first dossier memo was personally facilitated by Victoria Nuland, the assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs. Nuland gave approval for FBI agent Michael Gaeta to travel to London to obtain the memo from Steele. The memo may have passed directly from her to FBI leadership. Secretary of State John Kerry was also given a copy.

Steele was already well-known within the State Department. Following Steele's involvement in the FIFA scandal investigation, he began to provide reports informally to the State Department. The reports were written for a "private client" but were "shared widely within the U.S. State Department, and sent up to Secretary of State John Kerry and Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, who was in charge of the U.S. response to Putin's annexation of Crimea and covert invasion of eastern Ukraine," the Guardian reported.

In July 2016, when the FBI wanted to send Gaeta to visit Steele in London, the bureau sought permission from the office of Nuland, who provided this version of events during a Feb. 4, 2018, appearance on CBS's "Face the Nation":

"In the middle of July, when [Steele] was doing this other work and became concerned, he passed two to four pages of short points of what he was finding and our immediate reaction to that was, this is not in our purview. This needs to go to the FBI if there is any concern here that one candidate or the election as a whole might be influenced by the Russian Federation. That's something for the FBI to investigate."

Steele also met with Jonathan Winer, a former deputy assistant secretary of state for international law enforcement and former special envoy for Libya. Steele and Winer had known each other since at least 2010. In an opinion article in The Washington Post, Winer wrote the following:

"In September 2016, Steele and I met in Washington and discussed the information now known as the 'dossier.' Steele's sources suggested that the Kremlin not only had been behind the hacking of the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign but also had compromised Trump and developed ties with his associates and campaign."

In a strange turn of events, Winer also received a separate dossier , very similar to Steele's, from long-time Clinton confidant Sidney Blumenthal. This "second dossier" had been compiled by another longtime Clinton operative, former journalist Cody Shearer, and echoed claims made in the Steele dossier. Winer then met with Steele in late September 2016 and gave Steele a copy of the "second dossier." Steele went on to share this second dossier with the FBI, which may have used it to corroborate his dossier.

Other foreign officials also used conduits into the State Department. Alexander Downer, Australia's high commissioner to the UK, reportedly funneled his conversation with Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos -- later used as a reason to open the FBI's counterintelligence investigation -- directly to the U.S. Embassy in London.

"The Downer details landed with the embassy's then-chargé d'affaires, Elizabeth Dibble, who previously served as a principal deputy assistant secretary in Mrs. Clinton's State Department," The Wall Street Journal's Kimberley Strassel wrote in a May 31, 2018, article .

If true, this would mean that neither Australian intelligence nor the Australian government alerted the FBI to the Papadopoulos information. What happened with the Downer details, and to whom they were ultimately relayed, remains unknown.

Curiously, details surprisingly similar to the Papadopoulos–Downer conversation show up in the first memo written by Steele on June 20, 2016:

"A dossier of compromising information on Hillary Clinton has been collated by the Russian Intelligence Services over many years and mainly comprises bugged conversations she had on various visits to Russia and intercepted phone calls. It has not yet been distributed abroad, including to Trump."

Jeff Carlson is a regular contributor to The Epoch Times. He also runs the website TheMarketsWork.com and can be followed on Twitter @themarketswork.

[May 03, 2019] The Deputy of the Berlin city Parliament suggested to try Poroshenko in the international Tribunal

Poroshenko was a marionette. The decisions were make outside Ukraine.
May 03, 2019 | mt.gazeta.ru

Lindemann told the site kp.ru that personally saw letters of bodies of justice of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk national republics (DNR and LNR) according to which 90% of shells arrived to Donbass from the territory of Ukraine.

"The reports serve as the purest proof that Poroshenko did not want peace for Donbass," the Deputy concluded.

He told that the Ukrainian army strongly damaged the bridge in the Village Lugansk. Now through its destroyed spans are thrown wooden stairs, which have to pass civilians, including the elderly, said Lindemann. According to the Deputy, the authorities can't repair the bridge, as in this case the Ukrainian army will destroy it again. The politician called Kiev's position on this issue terrible: the European countries were going to allocate money for repair of the bridge, but the Ukrainian authorities didn't allow to make it.

Lindemann emphasized that the Tribunal for Poroshenko and his colleagues guilty of a situation in Donbass, has to be fair. In world history, there were no cases when the current President fell under the international court of justice with such accusations, so it can only be possible after Poroshenko will resign the powers of the head of state in May, the Deputy said.

The German politician called Poroshenko a military junta leader who stole resources from the armed conflict for personal enrichment. Lindemann expressed the hope that with the coming to power in Ukraine a new people, the confrontation in the Donbass will cease.

[May 03, 2019] Interview with Viktor Medvedchuk Vasily Golovanov on NewsOne

Slightly edited Google translation
May 03, 2019 | 112.ua

Vasyl Golovanov : ...We live with this President for 5 years. Whether you expected such result and what, in your opinion, to expect from Vladimir Aleksandrovich.

Viktor Medvedchuk : Vasily, this result was expected. At least he was predictable, because Poroshenko should not have become and did not become President. And the reason for this is his policy, which our party has repeatedly spoken about. And not only our party, but actually opposition forces which in the majority United in questions of criticism of mister Poroshenko. And they talked about peace in the Donbass, and the cessation of hostilities, talked about the tariff genocide, national radicalism, the impoverishment of millions of citizens, criminal lawlessness, social injustice and many other circumstances that pointed to what characterizes this regime Poroshenko, which for some reason they called "Euro-reformist", which actually ruined the country in the economy, social sphere, in the crisis of the political sphere.

And all this had to end, naturally, with Poroshenko's defeat. And this defeat took place.

... ... ...

In 1991, when Kravchuk became President, he scored 61.6%. It was a record that was never broken until actually here on April 21, 2019, when Zelensky won. And it is a great responsibility, to a great deal. Indeed, our country will live with a new President, with a new power, I hope, I am far from the idea that this power will remain. And what is happening today - a new team is being formed - comes with the fact that Mr. Zelensky is preparing to take office. I think she is facing very relevant challenges. The first was the resignation of the Cabinet of Ministers. Because with incompetent, untrained professionally, populist government of Mr. Groisman, actually is can be called the government of Mr. Yatsenyuk, the country is unable to live any longer.

And if Zelensky, who received such massive support, does not change the team, which, of course, what is expected of him, he will not be able to realize his election promises.

And therefore - this is the main task that must be performed. It's strategic. And that is what stands before him now and will be for 5 years. It is necessary to justify the trust that he received. To meet these expectations, and they are very high. Which means the requirements will be too high. He must be aware of that.

Vasily Golovanov: We will talk about Vladimir Zelensky later. I would also like to mention Pyotr Alekseevich. In your words, Poroshenko's complete failure is the people's response to his Russophobic policy. In your opinion, what will Zelensky's policy be?

Viktor Medvedchuk: it Is difficult to talk about what Zelensky's policy will be, but I do not think he will repeat the mistakes that Mr Poroshenko made. That is, Mr. Poroshenko, especially in the last months of the election campaign, the last months of activity as President, really elevated to the rank of the state policy of anti-Russian hysteria and caveman level Russophobia. This is a fact. He built the whole campaign on that. And here is even his slogan: "Army. Faith. Language" -- these words and these meanings for the country, for the Ukrainian people, they are very important. But what he did with them his manipulation of people psychology and his perversion of populism exceptional - they led to a backlash.

You will notice how Mr. Zelensky won, where he won the most votes. He scored them in the East - 88%, in the South - 86%. Do you know how much he scored in the Luhansk region? 90%. Do you know that Luhansk region has always been the most Russian-speaking region after Crimea in all the years of independence? Tell me, why did it vote?

Vasily Golovanov : It concerns cities, in villages there are Ukrainian speakers too, even in the Luhansk region.

Viktor Medvedchuk : The Question is different - their attitude. Of course, I am far from believing that the votes he received are votes only for him, votes against Poroshenko in the first place.

Vasily Golovanov : The Question of Peter Alekseevich and language is one of the slogans of his election campaign. We remember: about two weeks before the election he was a guest of "Freedom of speech" on ICTV, where he said to the question about the language: "Actually, I am Russian-speaking".

Viktor Medvedchuk : Of course, we know that.

Vasily Golovanov : And how did it happen that the person who hangs out on all boards - "Army. Faith. Language, " puts the emphasis on it, and it's one of the priorities of his campaign, at some point... It's as if he confessed to a different faith...

Viktor Medvedchuk : How did it happen that he admitted this during the election campaign just before the second round? Why would he do that? Perhaps he was beginning to realize the strategic mistake he had made when he spoke of language.

Because are there any Ukrainians today who are against the fact that the status of Ukrainian as the only state language is strengthened, developed and provides those opportunities in which the Ukrainian language should be, first of all, competitive, attractive and have other qualities that could allow it? No! But at the same time, we cannot ignore or discriminate against the Russian language and the language of other national minorities.

Moreover, he would not have succeeded, because the Constitution in article 10 has the status and part 3 of article 10 says that the territory of Ukraine guarantees the free development, use and protection of Russian and other languages of national minorities.

Why did he come, as you say, on Monday, before the second round, and told that he was Russian-speaking? And who did not know that Mr. Poroshenko was Russian-speaking? Do you think it is that, in different situations spoke in the Ukrainian language? I never spoke with him in Ukrainian, only in Russian. Well, maybe it's not an indicator, but it means not just focus, not just the attractiveness of a person, including in the use of language. This is a direct indication that a person has it inside. Why are you ignoring this?

Yes, you must develop the Ukrainian language. You are the President of Ukraine, but you should not allow disrespect, mockery and discrimination of other languages, including Russian. And so this reaction is also a response to what he was doing. That's direct result of his policies.

[May 03, 2019] Mr. Zelensky, if the Cabinet of Ministers does not listen to you and even more increases the cost of gas, the cost of utilities, block its activities!

Slightly edited Goggle translation
May 03, 2019 | 112.ua

Mr. Zelensky, get right and do it! Then, if the Cabinet of Ministers does not listen to you and sets its resolutions, and even more increases the cost of gas, the cost of utilities, block its activities! Any decision of the Cabinet can be stopped, blocked and appealed to the constitutional court for reasons of non-compliance with the Constitution! It's the President's right! So do not talk about the fact that it is impossible!

And when we talk about reducing tariffs, you will study the structure of these tariffs. My advice. Although, I do not advocate giving advice and this is not advice, and my vision. And you ask about the pricing structure of utility tariffs, including the cost of gas. You'll see that what's in there is props. And it's in the derivatives. About what, about what you said: Rotterdam+... When this involves the cost of coal, and in parallel or, more precisely, directly coal is electricity and is laid in tariffs. Dusseldorf + - the cost of gas. And it is laid in the tariffs for gas, which means - for hot water and heat. And much more, where the derivative is gas. That's all she wrote. No need to tell stories and send somewhere. It is necessary to send to itself and as promised, to do so that it would be possible to improve life of our people.

Vasily Golovanov: Then I also want to talk about gas and coal... If we make this detour now, or pretend that we are not buying Russian gas, although we are buying Russian gas, it is simply more expensive in Europe. Then why do we buy fuel? Why is our government so.

Viktor Medvedchuk: Because we buy Russian gas directly. In fact, look, I listened in one of Your programs, in the "Ukrainian format" somewhere right after the second round, it seems that you had a discussion, very interesting. Professionals told about it, but they do not fully understand this scheme. I'm just saying it because I know it. But it said about Velky kapushany. Look here - Russia, - Ukraine, but the Ukrainian border with Slovakia...That is, in Europe, velki kapushany, where there is a so-called accounting station. What is done? What's happening? Gas comes from the territory of Russia, comes to Ukraine - it is a gas transportation system. It dissolves in this system and goes to different needs. We don't have a line Russia - Europe on which there is the gas transit, which is operators, recipients and consumers of Europeans.

No! He's spent here, but it automatically comes to this border and Wielkie Capuano should count on the Ukrainian side, where they say the gas is out! There is 100 million cubic meters. And the other counter, here, suggests that the gas came to Europe. So what did? You imagine the Scam of this scheme. They closed this square. Moreover, this is not the worst thing... That's when I listened to what was said in the "Ukrainian format", I thought, well, now... The person who spoke, he, in principle, the professional. I thought he was gonna tell me what it was about. And he says: "They there gas this drive. Maybe he doesn't even exist." No, not that. They closed the circle. And this gas in one volume chases on this pipe. Why this is done? In order to show on the counter that he went to Europe.

For example, his buyer, on paper, is a French operator, gas operator. It is the papers I wrote - I got 100 million, because this counter is reflected and all - no complaints. And this gas when came, it already here 100 million, and we already used it here, but bought allegedly there. And then, when they say: here is the gas on the reverse. What reverse? What is the reverse? If the gas goes in one direction, how can it go in the opposite direction? Think about it! Well, gas goes to Europe, we put 89 billion there last year, the year before, left 94 billion there, it goes in one... How can you go, then stop, and go back? Or what? That is, those who talk about it, just do not know, and those who "vtyuhivayut" us, trying to bend in the understanding of all, to deceive. This is pure insanity.

It's not just a scheme. They also provide the price Dusseldorf+,1500 km. And these $42, shoulder the logistics they put into the scheme. That is, in pricing - it's net earnings. Then they are transferred into the rates and our people are paying. At attention. And so utility costs are rising, because the cost of gas is growing.

Well I'm still not talking about fraud handled by the NAK "Naftogaz" and Ukrgazdobycha. Because gas is produced, its cost there 2 700 - 2 900 UAH, up to a hundred dollars. And NAK "Neftegaz" buys from ukrgasvydobuvannya it under 6 thousand. What is this 100 % profitability? And where is it? In a poor, impoverished, economically underdeveloped country? 100% profitability?

I can say: no, this is on the development! For development wells on production growth, as we have said Groisman pathetic. It is as if he speaks out and says: "For 5 years we need to increase production so that we do not buy anything." This, approximately, as you can say - it is necessary to increase the retail space in the Vinnitsa market, here I understand. Here is indeed for 5 years can be their increase in 2 times. But it is impossible to increase gas production!

And where did you grow up in production? It produced 15.7 billion. In General, the country produced 21 billion in 2014, and we have now produced 20.7 billion with private companies by the end of 2018. So where is this increase in production? And where do you invest? What new wells, new production? Groysman, who is talking about this, at least interested in this?

Vasily Golovanov: what does the message of the Russian Federation on the ban on the entry of Russian oil and oil products into our country show us?

Viktor Medvedchuk: You put the question absolutely correctly. What does that mean? I, Vasily, will expand your question, because the essence of the question is wider. We say that Russia has imposed sanctions against Ukraine and banned the import of coal, petroleum products and oil.

Well, about oil - this is a relative understanding, because oil from Russia has not been supplied since 2007. And for this purpose there were the reasons in which mister Yanukovych and many others is guilty. We will not talk about this now, but oil products and coal are another issue. Now, this is a response. After all, what is the economic problem between Russia and Ukraine? It consists in the fact that Ukraine at some stage joined the sanctions of the European Union, and Russia introduced counter-sanctions against Ukraine.

Even earlier, we entered the free trade zone with the EU, thereby cutting off the path of interaction and cooperation within the CIS zone and trade relations with Russia. All of this has led to the complex that has existed in recent years. When we lose 7 billion export potential of our products and services in the markets of the Russian Federation.

Now that we are there is limited, what caused such reaction of Russia. They took and banned what is vital. We are an energy-dependent state. I can say that we depend on two States - on Russia and Belarus, almost equally.

[May 03, 2019] Mr. President, Ukraine is offering this evidence to the United States. Would you like the United States [to get this information]-- with all this talk about collusion, they are saying they included on behalf of Hillary Clinton's campaign in 2016

Poroshenko might be convicted in the interference in the US Presidential elections.
May 03, 2019 | www.realclearpolitics.com

TRUMP: Well, I think it's incredible when you hear it. These are great reporters, all three, and when you have them on your trail, that's a problem. These are people that should be getting Pulitzers, not the ones that got the Pulitzers that got everything wrong.

If you listen to them, they got everything wrong. Go back and read some of their early and mid articles. They didn't have a clue what was going on and they win Pulitzer Prizes. These are the ones that should be winning.

It sounds like big stuff. It sounds very interesting with Ukraine. I just spoke to the new president a little while ago, two days ago, and congratulated him on an incredible race. Incredible run. A big surprise victory. That's 75 percent of the vote.

But that sounds like big, big stuff. I'm not surprised.

HANNITY: Mr. President, Ukraine is offering this evidence to the United States. Would you like the United States -- with all this talk about collusion, they are saying they included on behalf of Hillary Clinton's campaign in 2016. Does America need to see that information in spite of all of the attacks against you on collusion?

TRUMP: Well, I think we do. And, frankly, we have a great new attorney general who has done an unbelievable job in a very short period of time. And he is very smart and tough and I would certainly defer to him. I would imagine he would want to see this.

People have been saying this whole -- the concept of Ukraine, they have been talking about it actually for a long time. You know that, and I would certainly defer to the attorney general.

And we'll see what he says about it. He calls them straight. That's one thing I can tell you.

[May 02, 2019] Russian and Eurasian Politics by Gordon M. Hahn

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... If Zelenskii sees himself as the spark or leader of a wave of color revolutions in the former USSR, he will find the going with Russia tough, regardless of who the Russian president is ..."
"... Another black swan is that Ukraine now has a Jewish president. This is not evidence of the absence of anti-Semitism, which is robust among Ukraine's substantial number of ultranationalists and neofascists. Anti-semitism has been overshadowed by such radicals' laser-like focus of their xenophobia on ethnic Russians. ..."
"... The fact of a Jewish president -- in addition to the present PM being Jewish -- poses the risk of an uptick in anti-Semitism and in the appeal of the ultranationalist/neofascist message if Zelenskii fails to improve the economy, cut corruption, and/or appears to be 'caving in' to Russian or Western demands to the detriment of Ukraine's interests. ..."
"... The Jewish president will be a prime scapegoat in the case of such failure. These two dynamics – the inexperienced Zelenskii's possible failure and the potential political repercussions of his Jewish roots -- could tip the scales in favor of the ultranationalist wing of the Maidan-in-opposition and shape its calculus as to whether or not to undertake a coup, repeating what worked once in February 2014. ..."
May 02, 2019 | gordonhahn.com

... Zelenskii himself is likely to fight corruption, to be sure, but he is unlikely to challenge the ultranationalists, neofascists, and their militarized combat organizations. ... Zelenskii is unlikely to offer concessions that the DNR, LNR or Moscow will find acceptable for resolving the Donbass civil war.

Zelenskii's Victory and the Presidential Elections

Zelenskii's victory signified some decline in the acceptability overall in Ukraine of the Galician/Western line backed by Poroshenko countrywide' fueled largely by a full rejection in the east and south. Zelenskii made it a central point of his campaign to bring the ostracized south and east back in to Ukraine and end the discrimination against the Russian language fostered by Poroshenko legislation. Thus, Zelenskii won more than 80 percent of the vote in each of the 11 more Russian-speaking regions in eastern and southern Ukraine and nearly 90 percent in several of them. Poroshenko took only nationalistic Lviv. In the rest of western Ukraine won, in many of these regions only by a slim majority, but he won nevertheless. He even took some 60 percent in Poroshenko's native Volhyn region ( https://elections.dekoder.org/ukraine/en?fbclid=IwAR36OdD3lrXL3EKKy9Zfdhk8k36Azgr6nNWLeYH3sYiYX9Ci51O86GVDhow ). To the extent Zelenskii received great support in the east, his election represents a desire for an end of the slow-burning civil war in Donbass, of the east-west polarization inside the country, and of alienation of Russian speakers and ethnic Russians as well as for a normalization of Kiev's relations with Russia. Poroshenko's narrow but nevertheless defeat in almost all the western regions reflects the Galicians disenchantment with corruption far more than any significant rejection of Galician Ukrainian nationalism, ultrnationalism and neofascism in the west.

... ... ...

The Nature of Maidan Ukraine's Hybrid Regime

However, the problem in Ukraine has often been less with its elections being unfree or unfair ( https://gordonhahn.com/2015/06/21/one-day-in-the-life-of-ukrainian-democracy/ ). Most often the problem has been with the rule of law, massive corruption, the theft of the state by various powerful oligarchs, the lack of a cohesive national identity, and a deeply polarized society. It is these aspects of Ukraine's authoritarian side, its 'stateness problem' and political polarization and instability which are rarely understood in the West [see Gordon M. Hahn, Ukraine Over the Edge: Russia, the West, and the 'New Cold War' (Jefferson: McFarland, 2018)].

The absence of the rule of law in Maidan Ukraine was in full display on the eve of the election as the siloviki chose sides in the vote. The SBU supported Poroshenko by trumping up the noted fake news of hacked emails never shown but allegedly showing that Zelenskii was Putin's Manchurian candidate ala 'Trump's collusion with the Kremln.' Doing the bidding of Yiliya Tymoshenko's campaign, the MVD, headed by ultranationalist Arsenii Avakov, uncovered Poroshenko vote buying schemes.

Similarly, the present and former Ukrainian general prosecutors' charges of interference in corruption investigations by US Vice President Joseph Biden and the present US ambassador to Ukraine underscored the point.

Also, the release of former Maidan war hero Nadia Savchenko also demonstrated this quite clearly. Either her arrest a little over a year ago for allegedly planning a massive terrorist attack that would have left many Maidan Rada deputies and civilians dead was based on wholly trumped up charges or some among the authorities are protecting an ultranationalist terrorist. Ironically, three days after the presidential vote, a Kievan was arrested on the basis of charges reminiscent of Russian law as many Maidan regime laws remind one of. Thus, the arrestee was charged with spreading on the Internet calls for 'separatism' and the overthrow of the Maidan regime that was established by an illegal and violent seizure of power ( https://vesti-ukr.com/kiev/334060-zhitelju-kievskoj-oblasti-hrozit-10-let-tjurmy-za-posty-v-sotssetjakh ).

A shocking level of official corruption has been characteristic of the Maidan regime's oligarchical side and was demonstrated even more forcefully during the presidential campaign. Poroshenko's failure to divest himself or 'trustify' his businesses established a fundamentally corrupt oligarch-presidency...

... ... ...

Historically speaking, some in the west -- Stepan Bandera's OUN and UPA fascists -- were allied with the Nazis in World War II; while the grandparents of many in the east fought for the Red Army against Hitler's forces and after the war repressed the OUN and UPA Banderites. This translates into a deep societal polarization with the west displaying considerable support for and tolerance of Galician-Ukrainian ultra-nationalism and neofascism in domestic politics a pro-Western foreign policy stance and the east supporting a more leftist, quasi-Soviet domestic order and pro-Russian foreign orientation. This divided has been repeatedly reflected in presidential and parliamentary elections throughout the history of post-Soviet Ukraine; hence the political upheavals often surrounding national elections, in particular in the 2004 'Orange revolution,' precursor to the 2013-14 Maidan revolt. This polarization has helped drive some of the lack of rule of law, corruption, and stealing of the state as oligarchs scramble to protect and expand their holdings on the background of deep political polarization between western Ukraine's Galicia and southeastern Ukraine and regime shifts from western Ukrainian-dominated governments to southeastern Ukrainian-dominated governments. All this explains and/or is explained by the Maidan regime's birth event – its original sin -- the 20 February 2014 snipers' terrorist false flag massacre.

Contrary to the West's false narrative that reads deposed Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych ordered snipers to kill Maidan demonstrators, the Maidan's ultranationalist-neofascist wing, with support from former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, deployed snipers on the Maidan to fire on both police and demonstrators in the false flag terrorist operation of the century (Ivan Katchanovski, http://www.academia.edu/38171919/Witness_Testimonies_for_the_Maidan_Massacre_Trial_and_Investigation_about_Snipers_in_Maidan-Controlled_Buildings_Video_Appendix_E?auto=bookmark&campaign=weekly_digest ; Ivan Katchanovski, https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2658245 ; and my own article at https://gordonhahn.com/2016/03/09/the-real-snipers-massacre-ukraine-february-2014-updatedrevised-working-paper/ ).

As one Ukrainian presidential candidate, former Orange regime Defense Minister Anatoliy Hrytsenko, noted: "I propose that one of the reasons that (the snipers massacre) has not been investigated to the end is that someone has feathers on their snout among those who are now in power" ( https://gordonua.com/news/politics/gricenko-odna-iz-prichin-pochemu-rasstrel-nebesnoy-sotni-ne-rassledovan-do-konca-u-kogo-to-rylo-v-puhu-iz-teh-kto-seychas-pri-vlasti-705668.html?fbclid=iwar1c9xxnp6k48rqnxrz2c6ki18lrnf7k2fhilbk9t2o0cfkx70ceff4egdw )."

Weeks later, Zelenskii commented: "People whom came to power on blood are profiting on blood" (www.pravda.com.ua/news/2019/02/26/7207718/). It appears he understands the essence of the Maidan regime's original sin. This poses a grave threat to some of the most powerful men in the regime including the likely organizer of the snipers' plot, Rada Chairman Andriy Parubiy, and perhaps Poroshenko himself, who appears to have played a role in helping smuggle the snipers out of Maidan Square, though he appears to have opposed the shooting as a video from the Maidan headquarters demonstrates.

This issue has the potential to bring the whole Western-backed house of cards tumbling down.

Maidan v. the People

The magnitude and centrality of the terrorist snipers' attack coverup for both the Maidan regime and the West's 'new cold war' narrative portend a bitter and brutal battle to prevent an objective investigation. Thus, the election of the politically unknown Zelenskii and the prospects of his inauguration and rule as president have sparked a cold civil war in Kiev. The Maidan regime's forces about to be relegated to the opposition, particularly after the victory of Zelenskii's new political party (Servant of the People in September's Rada elections, are poised and are already moving to do almost everything and perhaps everything to prevent his assuming the powers in Ukraine's semi-presidential system. Poroshenko and his allies and temporary allies in the Rada have undertaken several first steps against Zelenskii and his presidency. The most important may be the a draft law that would institute changes in the balance of power in the political system in favor of the prime minister and Rada against the president's office. Many of the proposed changes would empower the prime minister to a level nearly equal to that of the president. Thus, Article 35 of the new law would require the president to nominate a candidate for the post of prime minister indicated by a coalition of factions in the Rada. In other words, the Rada would nominate prime ministerial candidates, and the president would simply submit the same name much like the king or queen of England plays a purely formal role in the formation of the UK cabinet [https://samopomich.ua/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/project.pdf?fbclid=IwAR2QSRvRtMsWcWY-eR4ys0O6x0n_Doy21398U0VenM6J9jw21Hhy1E8sias (from here on cited as 'Draft Law'), p. 16].

Similarly, the president would be deprived by Article 36 in the new law of the power to independently submit to the Rada candidates for nomination to the posts of defense minister and foreign minister, the candidate nomination of which would have to be agreed upon before submission to the Rada again by a coalition of deputies' factions ( Draft law, pp. 16-17) . These clauses in the new law appear to be a direct violation of the Ukrainian Constitution's Article 106, which gives the President the unrestricted power to make such nominations.

The Rada is also boosted by the draft law's Article 85.1, which stipulates that in the event of the president's removal from office under an impeachment process the Rada's chair will execute the office of the presidency (Draft law, p. 42). This violates the Ukrainian Constitution's Article 112, which gives the role of acting president in such a case to the PM. At the same time, the PM would receive a series of new powers in the draft law. Article 39.3 of the draft law stipulates that the president "shall hold mandatory consultations with the Prime Minister regarding the formation of the personnel of the National Security and Defense Council" (SNBO), and Article 39.4 allows the Prime Minister to "initiate a decision before the President on formation of the personnel" of the SNBO and make changes to it (Draft law, p. 18).

Acting or temporary holders of the offices of Defense Minister, Foreign Minister, SBU chairman, and National Bank head are to be nominated by the PM under certain circumstances (Articles 30.4, 30.5, 40.6, and 42.5, respectively, Draft law, pp. 16-17, 19, and 20, respectively). Also, under the draft law the PM would also receive the new right to be consulted by the president in cases where two-thirds of a regional parliament has voted 'no confidence' in the region's administration head, which allows the president to dismiss him (Article 49. 3, Draft law, p. 24).

Although the President would retain the power to submit nominations to the posts of Prosecutor General and SBU chair, there is no mention of his power to appoint and dismiss regional prosecutors and SBU chiefs. The new law also appears to deprive the Ukrainian President of his present power to appoint the membership of the National Commission for Implementation of Regulation of Energy and Housing Services (NKREKU), the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU), and other regulators. Also, the president would be barred from creating any state administrative bodies such as a presidential apparatus or chancellery with powers anything more than advisory.

Thus under the new law the office of the president is deprived of its most important power -- appointment of the PM -- which now belongs to the majority in the Rada.

Thus, this new law on the presidency if adopted by the Rada and signed by Poroshenko as he leaves office would effectively transform Ukraine's semi-presidential system into a parliamentary republic with a powerful PM, whose authority rivals that of the President.

In and of itself this is not problematic and could even be regarded as a step in the direction of greater democracy in the sense of strong republican rule by a legislature of elected representatives of the people, it becomes anti-democratic and a violation of the rule of law by dint of the facts that several of the law's statutes violate the constitution. More importantly perhaps, the law violates the spirit of election by abrogating the recently expressed will of the people who elected a candidate to a particular office of the president of Ukraine as it existed on the day of the election, with all the powers the constitution vests in that office.

The imminent 'Maidan-in-opposition' has undertaken a series of other highly questionable measures to prepare to block or hamper his presidency. When presidential candidate Hrytsenko criticized the draft law on the presidency days after its posting on the site of the Galicia-based nationalist party 'Self-Help', led by the mayor of Lviv (Lvov) Andriy Sadoviy, the Lviv branch of the SBU opened an investigation against his wife's opinion polling company (www.pravda.com.ua/rus/news/2019/04/24/7213427/ and http://www.pravda.com.ua/rus/news/2019/04/24/7213432/ ).

Hrytsenko was the only first round presidential election candidate to meet with Zelenskii during the campaign for the second round, rousing suspicions he may have cut a deal for a place in any Zelenskii administration, perhaps his return to the post of Defense Minister. A move directly against Zelenskii has been the delay in announcing the final results of the presidential election (www.reuters.com/article/us-ukraine-election-zelenskiy/ukraines-president-elect-says-being-blocked-from-calling-snap-poll-idUSKCN1S129Z?fbclid=IwAR0W0Rl_e-XHjwUza7U2h8vA0di4csdWGmITrRFQ0MTxbhkx5aNkSiCmqpg).

This move has been combined with an attempt to delay Zelenskii's inauguration by removing the chairman of the constitutional court who deliberates in the president-elect's taking of the oath of office ( https://strana.ua/news/198120-v-konstitutsionnom-sude-sobirajut-holosa-za-otstavku-hlavy-vedomstva-dlja-sryva-inauhuratsii-zelenskoho.html?fbclid=IwAR3flvIbho_Iq3Zn9fGW5am1xV2y8GkLK_SRs77PRk2507YYawFcxtRrULI and https://vesti-ukr.com/politika/334088-zhurnalisty-rasskazali-kak-u-poroshenko-provodjat-sryv-inauhuratsii-zelenskoho ).

Although the delay is not prohibitive yet it risks preventing Zelenskii from calling new Rada elections as soon as he assumes office as he has reportedly planned to do. Mid-term elections cannot be called less than six months before the end of a Rada's convocation. The present Rada's term ends in early November. The delay of the inauguration may also provide time for investigative processes against Zelenskii to be completed and used to block his assumption of office. Thus, three days after the election, the corrupt anti-corruption body, NABU, opened an investigation int Zelenskii production company ( https://strana.ua/news/198188-nabu-nachalo-rassledovanie-po-kompanii-zelenskoho-iz-za-vozmozhnoj-rastraty-sredstv-hoskino-sytnik.html ).

The new draconian language law adopted by the Rada four days after the voting excludes from civil service those not fluent in Ukrainian. Zelenskii is not fluent in Ukrainian, and Poroshenko has vowed to sigh the law; one he himself helped draft and then submitted to the Rada before the election. Tentative Conclusions and Some Black Swans The Ukraine is on the edge of a constitutional crisis.

The country remains badly divided between the newly elected and at present popular president and his support base in the east and south, on the one hand, and Maidan's outgoing president, government and Rada with its support base largely in the west. As at the beginning of the Maidan protests in fall 2013, there are many Ukrainians who want positive democratic change. Unfortunately, they are countered by a powerful oligachic-ultranationalist coalition that has been stealing the state, dividing Ukrainians along regional, ethnic, linguistic, and religious lines in order to stay in power, and is about to be relegated to the position of the Maidan-in-opposition.

For now, Zelenskii is the new Yanukovych minus the corruption and pro-Russian inclinations. His positive image with the voters can be destroyed with new framing that can come with the ravaging of time in office as the elan of the victory in the presidential election fades and by effective Maidan-in-opposition propaganda. With Rada elections set for September, the first five-six months of Zelenskii's presidency -- should Poroshenko and the Rada radicals allow it to commence -- will be bogged down in a bitter power struggle that can easily spin out of control.

There is good reason to believe that the Rada leadership, the siloviki , and the ultranationalists and neofascists in Ukraine's frequently uncivil society will be willing to repeat a use of violence of February 2014 in order to preserve their power and avoid the risk of Zelenskii investigations into their corruption and the Maidan's original sin of that February 2014 snipers' terrorist attack. Zelenskii may very well forego a serious investigation of the Maidan terrorist attack and a crackdown on the illegal armed formations and activity of ultranationalists and neofascists like the National Corps and C14. A bridge too far for any Ukrainian leader, given the weak state and powerful extremist element on the streets.

There are black swans on the horizon. One is Vladimir Putin. He 'welcomed' Zelenskii by issuing a decree easing requirements for immigration to Russia and the receipt of Russian passports and pension payments for residents in civil war-torn region of the separatist DNR and LNR. In this way, he seemed to remind Zelenskii of Russia's now limited, albeit, direct military presence in the war zone. He further signaled his intent to run a hard bargain by refusing to congratulate Zelenskii on his presidential election victory unlike in 2014 when Putin congratulated Poroshenko.

But Zelenskii may have walked into this slap. He threw down the gauntlet to Putin when declared after his election victory (and before these moves by Putin): "To all post-Soviet countries: Look at us, anything is possible" ( www.rferl.org/a/poroshenko-concedes-after-exit-polling-shows-zelenskiy-taking-ukraine-presidency/29894814.html ). He reiterated the point several days later specifically when responding to Putin's decision to ease Donbass access to Russian passports and immigration ( https://vesti-ukr.com/strana/334477-zelenskij-sdelal-zajavlenie-ob-idee-putina-vydavat-ukraintsam-pasporta-rf ).

If Zelenskii sees himself as the spark or leader of a wave of color revolutions in the former USSR, he will find the going with Russia tough, regardless of who the Russian president is. Russians fear both revolution and foreign interference far more than they do Putin. More importantly for Ukraine, such a stance will make a resolution of the Donbass conflict impossible.

Another black swan is that Ukraine now has a Jewish president. This is not evidence of the absence of anti-Semitism, which is robust among Ukraine's substantial number of ultranationalists and neofascists. Anti-semitism has been overshadowed by such radicals' laser-like focus of their xenophobia on ethnic Russians.

The fact of a Jewish president -- in addition to the present PM being Jewish -- poses the risk of an uptick in anti-Semitism and in the appeal of the ultranationalist/neofascist message if Zelenskii fails to improve the economy, cut corruption, and/or appears to be 'caving in' to Russian or Western demands to the detriment of Ukraine's interests.

The Jewish president will be a prime scapegoat in the case of such failure. These two dynamics – the inexperienced Zelenskii's possible failure and the potential political repercussions of his Jewish roots -- could tip the scales in favor of the ultranationalist wing of the Maidan-in-opposition and shape its calculus as to whether or not to undertake a coup, repeating what worked once in February 2014.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

About the Author – Gordon M. Hahn, Ph.D., is a Senior Researcher at the Center for Terrorism and Intelligence Studies (CETIS), Akribis Group, San Jose, California, www.cetisresearch.org ; an expert analyst at Corr Analytics, http://www.canalyt.com ; and an analyst at Geostrategic Forecasting Corporation (Chicago), www.geostrategicforecasting.com .

Dr. Hahn is the author of the four books, most recently Ukraine Over the Edge: Russia, the West, and the 'New Cold War . Previously, he has authored three well-received books: The Caucasus Emirate Mujahedin: Global Jihadism in Russia's North Caucasus and Beyond (McFarland Publishers, 2014), Russia's Islamic Threat (Yale University Press, 2007), and Russia's Revolution From Above: Reform, Transition and Revolution in the Fall of the Soviet Communist Regime, 1985-2000 (Transaction Publishers, 2002). He also has published numerous think tank reports, academic articles, analyses, and commentaries in both English and Russian language media.

Dr. Hahn also has taught at Boston, American, Stanford, San Jose State, and San Francisco State Universities and as a Fulbright Scholar at Saint Petersburg State University, Russia and has been a senior associate and visiting fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the Kennan Institute in Washington DC, and the Hoover Institution.

[May 01, 2019] Freeland for the President of Galicia

May 01, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Telescope | May 1, 2019 7:17:54 PM | 53

Make no mistake, Russia's move to start handing out passports to Donetsk and Luhansk inhabitants is intimately linked to events in Venezuela. And the fate of Ukraine rests on whether the US undertakes direct action vs Caracas or not.

The moment Bolton justified possible invasion by the duty to protect US citizens in Venezuela was also the moment Moscow made the final decision to create similar pretext for the dismantling of the Ukraine.

Russians had already proven their ability to take quick advantage of American moves against its allies by taking symmetrical action against vulnerable vassals of Washington. Kosovo was reciprocated by Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Takeover of Kiev - by severing of Crimea and Donbass. Invasion of Venezuela will inevitably result in Ukraine losing all of Black Sea coast and becoming completely unviable. And unlike US Special Forces, Russian troops will actually be greeted with flowers and genuine popular support in Kherson and Odessa.

Lozion , May 1, 2019 7:34:28 PM | 56

@53 telescope, yes and I suggest Freeland as head the left over rump state: Galicia Uber Alles:

https://www.therussophile.org/canadians-lose-ukraine-election-chrystia-freeland-for-president-of-galicia.html/

@37 Red Ryder: "But regime change is a lost art in Washington".

Great quote. Love it..

[May 01, 2019] Christya Freeland vs Victoria Nuland

Notable quotes:
"... Like Victoria Nuland in Ukraine, she represents women politician who feel empowered by their weak and stupid leader to destroy countries. She should be tried for war crimes once she looses her diplomatic immunity. ..."
"... Walter, it's simple; might is right. You don't fuck with the Empire. But hubris... ..."
Apr 30, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Virgile , Apr 30, 2019 1:50:42 PM | link

Guaido should be left free to make more failed coups to ridicule himself and loose the little credibility he has left.

Christya Freeland the Canadian Trump worshipper should shut up once for all. Like Victoria Nuland in Ukraine, she represents women politician who feel empowered by their weak and stupid leader to destroy countries. She should be tried for war crimes once she looses her diplomatic immunity.

She and her boss are a disgrace to Canadians.

Barovsky , Apr 30, 2019 5:26:29 PM | link

Posted by: Walter | Apr 30, 2019 4:49:30 PM | 112

Walter, it's simple; might is right. You don't fuck with the Empire. But hubris...

[Apr 30, 2019] Ukraine Sends in the Clown by Nina L. Khrushcheva

This distant relative on Nikita Krushchev is a despicable and clueless neocon. She does not even understand that under Poroshenko the standard of living of population dropped more then twice and changes for heating role more then 5 times.
Notable quotes:
"... Zelensky is far from the first charismatic non-politician to win political power in recent years. The most obvious example is the real-estate developer and reality-TV showman Donald Trump. ..."
"... Most Ukrainians now support radical changes to economic, social, and foreign policy. ..."
Apr 30, 2019 | www.project-syndicate.org

Ukraine Sends in the Clown Apr 30, 2019 Nina L. Khrushcheva Most Ukrainian voters arguably know that the comedian Volodymyr Zelensky, whose only claim to fame up to now was playing a teacher-turned-president in a popular TV series, will not be the real-life president of their dreams. So why did nearly three-quarters of them back him?

KYIV – In the 2000s, The West Wing was everybody's favorite television show about an aspirational US administration – one that fought terrorism without waging war on an entire region or religion, refused to trample on the rule of law, and generally made decisions that were in the country's best interest. Many wished the show's calm and collected fictional president, played by Martin Sheen, could replace America's cowboy president, George W. Bush, and his war-mongering sidekick, Dick Cheney.

In a sense, that is exactly what is happening now in Ukraine. The comedian Volodymyr Zelensky, whose only claim to fame up to now was playing a teacher-turned-president in the popular TV series Servant of the People , won the presidency in a landslide earlier this month. But, far from the fantasy of an idealized president, this is yet another example of a distorted reality – all too familiar to Ukrainians – in which characters, not leaders, define politics.

Zelensky is far from the first charismatic non-politician to win political power in recent years. The most obvious example is the real-estate developer and reality-TV showman Donald Trump. But in Austria, Hungary, Italy, Russia, and elsewhere, characters have also used populist rhetoric to appeal to ordinary people who feel ignored by the elites. Another comedian, Beppe Grillo, co-founded Italy's Five Star Movement, which is now the senior government party, though he stepped aside in January 2018, weeks before the election that brought his creation to power.

There are nuances to this trend. After Trump won the 2016 presidential election in the United States, I recalled Brave New World , in which Aldous Huxley conjured a future in which humanity had been destroyed by ignorance and lust for mindless entertainment. Trump, feasting on burgers as he binge-watches Fox News stories about himself, embodies this disposition.

Whereas a combination of too much amusement and too little knowledge contributed to Americans' choice of Trump, Ukrainians were reacting to politicians' betrayal of the ideals of the 2013-14 Maidan Square protests, which sought to get Ukraine out from underneath Russia's thumb. Chief among the turncoats was President Petro Poroshenko, a Maidan hero who ended up as a manifestation of the old oligarchic system. Most Ukrainians now support radical changes to economic, social, and foreign policy.

Thus, with nothing but an appealing TV persona, Zelensky was able to convince voters that his inexperience would be a better bet than another term of Poroshenko's corrupt leadership. Despite having no political team or discernable policy platform, he won 73% of the vote – a share normally attained by authoritarians who stifle their opponents and stuff ballot boxes.

... ... ...

Another Ukrainian friend, a middle-aged scientist, observed that Zelensky's most direct antecedent may be Andriy Danylko – Ukraine's best-known entertainer, a musical comedian who performs in drag under the stage name Verka Serduchka. In 2007, Danylko tried, unsuccessfully, to form his own political party.

According to this friend, Ukrainians' embrace of Zelensky was driven by the same revolutionary urge that fueled the protests in 2004 and 2013-14. While the pro-Western Tymoshenko would have delivered the change that Ukrainians want, he explained, this year voters wanted even more to reject the existing system entirely. The fact that Trump is presiding over a booming US economy only strengthened their willingness to gamble on a TV character.

But even Zelensky may not be the rebellious choice he seems to be. Some have questioned his relationships with oligarchs – in particular Igor Kolomoisky, the owner of the TV channel that broadcasts his show. Many suggest that Kolomoisky effectively bought the election so that he himself could rule Ukraine from behind the scenes....

... ... ...

Ukraine is a symptom, not a specimen. In a world that increasingly resembles Huxley's dystopia...

[Apr 30, 2019] Hope is often a devalued currency: Volodymyr Zelenskiy as Actor President by Binoy Kampmark

Notable quotes:
"... Deputy Chief Anton Hrushetskiy reported findings of 2004 respondents to the question "Which of the following should the president do in the first 100 days?" ..."
"... The list is meaningfully desperate and vengeful against state officials: a touch under 40% wish a slash in utility rates; 35.5% demand a removal of immunity for lawmakers, judges and the president; 32.4% wish for an opening of investigations and a speeding up of current ones into corruption-related crimes and abuses; 23.3% hope for commencing talks with Russia; 18.4% demand a reduction of wages of top officials. All this stands to reason: Zelenskiy offers something others have not: a tabula rasa upon which voters can impose their vision. In contrast, Poroshenko, candy billionaire with an acid aftertaste, offered the usual cluttering: Army, language, faith. ..."
"... Poroshenko offered an ideal target: divisive, army hugging entho-nationalist, with an anti-Russian fixation ..."
"... In the words of head spokesperson at Zelinskiy's election headquarters, Dmitry Razumkov, "The return of the occupied territories of the Donbass and Crimea must proceed exclusively on Ukraine's terms. Russia, as always, is trying to turn everything on its head and do everything backwards – by holding elections first." ..."
"... The stage in Ukraine has been going to seed for some years, manuring away in decay and poverty, bleeding in the Donbass region and plundered by self-enriching elites. ..."
"... For one, parliamentary elections are due in October, leaving the virgin premier with six months of potential obstruction. Poroshenko, for his part, promises to be a vulture in the galley, awaiting any slipups: "I am leaving office, but I want to firmly underline that I am not leaving politics." ..."
Apr 30, 2019 | www.counterpunch.org

... ... ...

Hope is often a devalued currency, but its vigorous circulation can be gathered in the measurements of public opinion by the Kyiv-based International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) conducted this month. Deputy Chief Anton Hrushetskiy reported findings of 2004 respondents to the question "Which of the following should the president do in the first 100 days?"

The list is meaningfully desperate and vengeful against state officials: a touch under 40% wish a slash in utility rates; 35.5% demand a removal of immunity for lawmakers, judges and the president; 32.4% wish for an opening of investigations and a speeding up of current ones into corruption-related crimes and abuses; 23.3% hope for commencing talks with Russia; 18.4% demand a reduction of wages of top officials. All this stands to reason: Zelenskiy offers something others have not: a tabula rasa upon which voters can impose their vision. In contrast, Poroshenko, candy billionaire with an acid aftertaste, offered the usual cluttering: Army, language, faith.

The broom for cleaning is being readied. Remarks had been made, some floated from the quarters of Poroshenko, that the new administration would include elements of the old regime. Former Finance Minister and advisor to Zelenskiy, Oleksandr Danyliuk, was adamant on Ukraine's ICTV this would not be the case: "Regarding the comment that Volodymyr Zelenskiy's new team will include old staff of the Presidential Administration, the Cabinet of Ministers I'd like to say this is absolutely not true, this is one of the fake news and bogeyman stories that your [Petro Poroshenko's] headquarters is spreading."

Political regulars and strategists have brought out their calculators and have been left wanting. Moscow, along with other readers of political entrails, did not see this victory in the offing. Poroshenko offered an ideal target: divisive, army hugging entho-nationalist, with an anti-Russian fixation. He could therefore be, over time, worn down, his country packaged as resoundingly anti-Semitic, fascist and hateful of the Soviet Union's exploits against Nazi Germany.

Preference would have been for Yuriy Boyko, backed by the pro-Russian Viktor Medvedchuk. The results did give their party 16% of the vote, making them second behind Zelenskiy's Servant of the People, which received 26%. Not quite happy days, but perhaps less anxious ones.

From what can be gathered from the new president, some measure of rapprochement towards their fraternal, giant neighbour might be in the offing, even if accompanied by what he terms "a very powerful information war" to end the eastern conflict. Baby steps include lifting restrictions on the use of Russian in the country, which would also entail an end to blocking cultural exchanges and restrictions on accessing Russian social media networks. But to perceive a total change on that front would be to wonder in the realms of fantasy. In the words of head spokesperson at Zelinskiy's election headquarters, Dmitry Razumkov, "The return of the occupied territories of the Donbass and Crimea must proceed exclusively on Ukraine's terms. Russia, as always, is trying to turn everything on its head and do everything backwards – by holding elections first."

The stage in Ukraine has been going to seed for some years, manuring away in decay and poverty, bleeding in the Donbass region and plundered by self-enriching elites.

It took Zelenskiy to come to the fore by stepping off the screen and, quite literally, onto a live stage. Whether he is capable of directing his own show, mastering his own brief, as it were, will be a wonder.

For one, parliamentary elections are due in October, leaving the virgin premier with six months of potential obstruction. Poroshenko, for his part, promises to be a vulture in the galley, awaiting any slipups: "I am leaving office, but I want to firmly underline that I am not leaving politics."

Join the debate on Facebook

Binoy Kampmark was a Commonwealth Scholar at Selwyn College, Cambridge. He lectures at RMIT University, Melbourne. Email: bkampmark@gmail.com More articles by: Binoy Kampmark

[Apr 29, 2019] 8 things we learned through Dutch report, BUK arms maker on MH17 crash in Ukraine -- RT World News

Notable quotes:
"... A missile launched from Snezhnoye could not have inflicted damage to the Boeing's left side, and not a single element would have hit the aircraft's left wing and engine, said the Almaz-Antey experts. ..."
Oct 13, 2015 | archive.is

Dutch investigators have published a much-awaited final report into the causes of the MH17 plane crash in eastern Ukraine, while Russian BUK producer Almaz-Antey has revealed the results of its experiments.

Here are eight crucial points from both reports. Follow Live Updates The Dutch Safety Board (DSB) has been leading the investigation into the causes of the downing of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17. The crash killed nearly 300 passengers and crew members on July 17, 2014 in eastern Ukraine. The DBS investigation is aimed at providing technical details about the crash, while another probe carried out by the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is expected to determine who was responsible for the incident by the end of this year.

See the Facebook Help Center for more information. It looks like you may be having problems playing this video. If so, please try restarting your browser.

Close Dutch Safety Board simulates MH17 being hit by BUK missile

Posted by RT Play 68,055 Views Dutch Safety Board simulates MH17 being hit by BUK missile Posted by RT Play 68,055 Views app-facebook

1. BUK 9М38-series fired at plane The Boeing 777 flying over Ukraine was downed using a 9N314M-model warhead which was mounted on the 9M38-series of missiles, installed on the BUK surface-to-air missile system. The pre-formed fragments that hit the plane were solid, cube and bow-tie shaped, the report said. " The number of impacts, the distribution pattern and the shape of the high-energy objects that were found are consistent with the pre-shaped fragments in the war-head of the 9N314M model ," it said. © cdn.onderzoeksraad.nl 2.Missile exploded on the left side of the Boeing The in-flight disintegration of the plane occurred due to a detonation above the left hand side of the Boeing's cockpit, the Dutch investigators said. © cdn.onderzoeksraad.nl 3.Missile was fired from Ukrainian territory The investigators said the warhead was detonated from somewhere within a 320 sq. km area in the east of Ukraine. However, they could not establish which side of the conflict controlled the area at the site of the incident. © cdn.onderzoeksraad.nl 4. Ukraine failed to close its airspace The DBS bashed Ukrainian authorities for failing to recognize the increased risk to civil airplanes flying at cruising altitude and to close the airspace above the conflict zone. © cdn.onderzoeksraad.nl 5. Kiev admitted presence of weapons able to shoot down plane "The statements made by Ukrainian authorities on 14 and 17 July 2014, related to the military airplanes being shot down, mentioned the use of weapon systems that can reach the cruising altitude of civil airplanes. In the judgment of the DBS these statements provided sufficient reason for closing the airspace over the conflict zone as a precaution," the Dutch report said. BUK-2M missile system © Vadim Braydov © RIA Novosti Just hours ahead of the Dutch report, Russian BUK missile maker Almaz-Antey held a media conference presenting its findings relating to the MH17 crash.

Almaz-Antey conducted research which included two experiments simulating explosions, with the second one using a decommissioned Ilyushin Il‐86 aircraft, similar to a Boeing 777 in its aerodynamic, technical and physical attributes, as well as its fuselage design. The company's detailed technical presentation of the findings on Tuesday lasted for about three hours. Here are the three key conclusions they drew: 1.BUK 9М38 hit the plane The plane was hit by an earlier generation of the 9M38 Buk missile complete with warhead 9N314 ("without I-beams"), Almaz-Antey said in its presentation on Tuesday. According to the arms producer, the particles which hit the plane were cube-shaped, not bow-shaped. The last missile of this type was produced in the Soviet Union in 1986, and its life span is 25 years including all prolongations. All missiles of this type were decommissioned from the Russian Army in 2011, it said. It looks like you may be having problems playing this video. If so, please try restarting your browser. Close MH17 crash test simulation Posted by RT Play 114,808 Views share MH17 crash test simulation Posted by RT Play 114,808 Views app-facebook Video Unavailable Sorry, this video could not be played. Learn More 2. Missile exploded on left side "The sub-munitions primarily damaged the left side of the MH17 Boeing, primarily its cockpit, left wing, left engine, and the left side of the tail, " the company said. 3. Missile fired from Kiev-controlled area? Based on the angle of the damage to MH17, the BUK producer established that the most probable location of the missile launch was the area to the south of the village of Zaroshchenskoe in the Donetsk region in eastern Ukraine. The arms producer refuted earlier claims that the missile had been launched from Snezhnoy, controlled by rebel forces and located near Torez – the MH17 crash site.

A missile launched from Snezhnoye could not have inflicted damage to the Boeing's left side, and not a single element would have hit the aircraft's left wing and engine, said the Almaz-Antey experts.

The Dutch Safety Board said on Tuesday that it would study the results of the two experiments presented by BUK manufacturer Almaz-Antey, adding that the MH17 investigation will not be completed in 2015. LI

[Apr 29, 2019] The Evidence In The MH17 Case Doesn't Point To Russia Or Ukraine by William Craddick

The intensity and sophistication of propaganda campaign, as well as the fact that it was started immediately raised really strong suspicions about possible western involvement. But if there is a Western trace then the missile should probably be fired for aircraft not from the ground.
Like in case with JFK everything became a mystery
Apr 29, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Via Disobedient Media

The MH17 case shocked the world as it happened and caused an escalation of the war in Ukraine. Although many accusations have been leveled over responsibility for the tragedy, the panel investigating the incident continues to search for the identities of the perpetrators. However, all focus has centered around the culprits being either Ukrainian or Russian, both of whom did not have incentive to further aggravate the Ukrainian conflict.

An examination of the facts, the connections of various state and non-state actors pushing disinformation about MH17 along with knowledge about historical intelligence playbooks and foreign mercenary involvement in Ukraine would in fact suggest that the party responsible for shooting the aircraft down may have been a team with ties to transatlantic American groups allied with certain Western European interests.

I. Investigation Results

In 2014, the Dutch Safety Board (DSB) published its initial findings as part of the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) seeking to determine who was at fault for the attack on MH17. These findings established that a BUK 9M38-series missile was fired at MH17 and that the missile was shot from somewhere inside east Ukraine in an area where control was contested by government and rebel forces. At the same time, BUK missile producer Almaz-Antey gave a press conference where they stated that based on the shape of the shrapnel particles which hit MH17, the missile prototype was last produced by the Soviet Union in 1986. Since the missiles have a life span of 25 years, they were decommissioned by the Russian Army in 2011.

In 2016, Stratfor released analysis of satellite imagery from DigitalGlobe that they claimed showed the missile launcher which fired the BUK at MH17. As Disobedient Media has previously reported, DigitalGlobe is an American vendor of satellite imagery founded by a scientist who worked on the US military's Star Wars ICBM defense program under President Ronald Reagan. DigitalGlobe began its existence in Oakland, CA and was seeded with money from Silicon Valley sources and corporations in North America, Europe and Japan. Headquartered in Westminster CO, DigitalGlobe works extensively with defense and intelligence programs . In 2016, it was revealed that DigitalGlobe was working with CIA chipmaker NVIDIA and Amazon Web Services to create an AI-run satellite surveillance network known as Spacenet . Their photos have repeatedly been used in propaganda attempts to undermine negotiations between North Korea and the United States.

In May 2018, the JIT gave an update on their investigation where they "presumed" that the BUK missile which was used against MH17 came from the Russian 53rd Anti Aircraft Missile brigade. This presumption appears to be a rehash of claims made by "independent" investigative organization Bellingcat in 2014. Nonetheless, investigators left open the possibility that the missile had been fired by another party .

In September 2018, the Russian military gave a press conference where they said the missile that shot down MH17 came from a Ukrainian army arsenal. This belief was based on a study of military archives after the JIT had made the serial number of the missile public. The JIT responded that they would need Russia to submit information supporting their claims, despite the fact that Dutch investigators could have also reached out to Ukrainian authorities in an attempt to verify whether or not the serial number was in fact from a missile part transferred during the Soviet era. II. Nation-State Narrative Pushing

In the aftermath of the JIT's 2018 update, the governments of the Netherlands and Australia issued a statement blaming Russia for the incident. They were supported by Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who echoed a previous British intelligence report claiming without evidence that they also knew the Russian military "supplied and subsequently recovered" the missile launcher. This manner of nation-state propaganda has pervaded the investigation process since MH17 went down in 2014 and does not match the assertions of the JIT, who have consistently left open the possibility that a party other than Russia was responsible.

It is little surprise to see the Netherlands working in lockstep with the United Kingdom and Australia, who are both members of the UKUSA Agreement popularly known as Five Eyes (FVEY). The UK in particular has been shown to have been involved with operations alongside the Netherlands. Both the British and Dutch governments have been tied to Cheollima Civil Defense , who sought a coup in North Korea before they were targeted by American law enforcement . Integrity Initiative , an organization supported financially by UK intelligence and the Foreign Office, also maintained a Netherlands cluster . Members of this cluster include Yevhen Fedchenko , the Ukrainian co-founder and chief editor of stopfake.org and multiple members of The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies (HCSS), an "independent" think tank that works with the Dutch Ministries of Security and Justice, Foreign Affairs and Defense as well as NATO. British intelligence assets have also been exposed among the staff of the Voice of Europe , a right wing publication located in the Netherlands.

Interestingly, Malaysia , whose aircraft was shot down, has said that there is no conclusive evidence showing that Russia was responsible for downing MH17. The US State Department additionally declined to issue a statement they had prepared in 2018 criticizing Russia's alleged role in the event.

III. Intent

In criminal law, establishing intent to commit the crime in question is often an essential element to convicting a guilty party . In the case of MH17, neither Russia or Ukraine had an incentive to shoot down the airliner. The event dashed any immediate hopes of a " Novorussia " state or an early end to the Ukrainian war. It similarly created a disadvantage to Ukraine, who has lost thousands of their own citizens in the conflict due to its failure to conclude quickly. Neither country has a good cause to continue fighting for as long as they have. The MH17 tragedy ensured that both countries would remain mired in a struggle.

Both parties mutually denied involvement in the attack. Russia's kneejerk reaction was to incorrectly claim a Ukrainian jet was responsible, likely because of accusations that air-to-air missiles had brought down Ukrainian military aircraft in recent days. The Russian information warfare strategy did not take into account that Western media and certain Ukrainian officials were already blaming a BUK launcher as the cause for the attack. This kind of confusion and failure to prepare narratives is a sign that Russian officials did not anticipate the incident beforehand.

Europeans and American factions who support initiatives such as the European Union and NATO do have such a cause. Confrontation between Ukraine and Russia serves not only as a distraction to Russia, but pushes Ukraine into the arms of Western interests .

IV. British Intelligence Propaganda Efforts

The pervasive involvement of British intelligence propaganda operations surrounding the MH17 incident further indicates that European and allied American groups are using the incident to stoke the Ukrainian conflict. British website Bellingcat was founded after the downing of MH17 and immediately began to focus on providing "evidence" they hoped would be of value to investigators. It would appear that their efforts have been met with success after the JIT appeared to lend credence to some of their claims that the BUK missile used against MH17 came from the Russian military.

Leaks from 2018 have established, however, that Bellingcat is a propaganda operation with ties to organizations funded by British intelligence. Documents from the Integrity Initiative list both Bellingcat and the Atlantic Council, a think tank known for engaging in pay-to-play behavior with foreign donors, as "partner organizations."

Screenshot from a leaked Integrity Initiative document labeling Bellingcat as a "partner organization."

Bellingcat author Dan Kaszeta , who was involved with narrative formation surrounding the Skripal assassination attempt , was forced to issue an unconvincing denial that he worked for British intelligence after it emerged that he also wrote for Integrity Initiative. Integrity Initiative's now-censored website itself featured a page dedicated to combatting what they branded as "disinformation" surrounding MH17.

In addition to spreading propaganda in Europe, Bellingcat also runs operations targeting other locations as well. Canada-based Venezuelan anti-government blog In Venezuela is run by a Bellingcat member. The organization has also promoted Bana Alabed , a Syrian girl who supposedly worked with her English-speaking mother in Aleppo to send out perfectly worded tweets requesting NATO intervention in Syria during the siege of the city by government forces.

Bana Alabed promotes Bellingcat.

The pervasive involvement of the Integrity Initiative-connected Bellingcat in pushing pro-British propaganda into the MH17 investigation process provides a strong indication that official narratives about the tragedy are inaccurate.

V. Clues To Identity Of Perpetrators

If neither Ukrainian or Russian forces were responsible for the downing of MH17, who else could be?

Creating false attribution during military attacks is a very old tactic. The Gleiwitz incident at the start of Work War Two and the Gulf of Tonkin are two historical examples of occasions where false attribution occurred for political purposes. In the 1960's, the United States looked seriously at staging incidents of harassment or outright attacks against civilian airliners as part of Operation Northwoods . The attacks would be falsely attributed to the Cuban government by using procured MiG fighters or creating replicas that would fool observers. Internal documents from the CIA show a number of configurations that would withstand varying degrees of scrutiny were being considered.

Interestingly, the JIT used a US-made missile in tests meant to model the impact to MH17. BUK producer Almaz-Antey claimed that this meant the missile differed from their version in crucial features such as flight path.

There is also evidence that American mercenaries were on the ground in parts of eastern Ukraine that were held by rebel forces as fighting intensified in the months leading up to the MH17 crash. In March 2014, Bild am Sonntag cited German government sources who claimed that over 400 American mercenaries working for Academi affiliate Greystone were operating in Ukraine. The article was sparked by videos which had recently emerged online showing armed men said to be Americans on the streets on Donetsk, Ukraine. Academi issued a statement denying that any of their direct employees were in Ukraine but did not comment on the nature of their relationship to Greystone.

Video still shows soldiers said to be Americans on the ground in Donetsk, Ukraine in March 2014.

On May 4, 2014, Bild am Sonntag claimed that CIA and FBI agents were in Kiev to "advise" the Ukrainian government, citing unnamed German security sources. The next day, The Independent noted that locals in east Ukraine believed British or US forces might be active in the region after discovering items such as a British military jacket along with American rations and ammunition casings.

The evidence that Western mercenaries were present in Ukraine during the months leading up to the downing of MH17 should not be discounted and merits serious examination by investigators. Russian mercenaries have created headaches for their home nation in locations such as Syria due to potentially taking contracts for private clients while deployed in conflict zones. The involvement of Americans in Ukraine similarly raises questions about whether or not their services could have been exploited to aggravate an already contentious conflict that did not benefit either Ukraine or Russia.

Given the heavy involvement of British intelligence in narrative formation surrounding MH17 and clear attempts to induce the JIT to adopt the research of intelligence-connected investigative groups one must ask if the international panel investigating the case is missing the bigger picture by focusing on Ukraine and Russia alone. The evidence in fact points to a far different reality than the one presented by the international media. Will the JIT seek true justice? Or will they give the world easy and expected answers to their questions about MH17? Tags Politics

[Apr 29, 2019] The election of Zelensky in Ukraine and the way forward for the working class by Clara Weiss

Apr 25, 2019 | www.wsws.org

Comedian Volodymyr Zelensky won the Ukrainian presidential elections Sunday with over 73 percent of the vote, in a massive repudiation of the incumbent president, Petro Poroshenko, and the imperialist-orchestrated 2014 coup that brought him to power.

The "chocolate oligarch" Poroshenko became president in the wake of the operation in February 2014 that toppled the pro-Russian government of Viktor Yanukovich. Behind the coup stood the major imperialist powers, above all the US and Germany. Basing themselves on sections of the Ukrainian oligarchy and upper middle class, they mobilized fascist forces to install a puppet regime that would be immediately subservient to their economic interests and war preparations against Russia.

The bourgeois media hailed this fascist-led coup as a "democratic revolution." They were joined by the middle-class left, including organizations such as the now-defunct International Socialist Organization, which systematically worked to downplay the role played by the extreme right and the US State Department in the creation of this "revolution."

The results of the 2014 coup for the working class have been nothing less than catastrophic. In the past five years, the Poroshenko regime has stood at the forefront of the imperialist military buildup against Russia. Ukrainian military spending has risen to a staggering 6 percent of GDP.

The systematic ratcheting up of tensions with Russia by the Kiev regime, most recently with its reckless provocation in the Azov Sea, have dramatically heightened the danger of a full-scale war in Europe, which could quickly escalate into another world war. The ongoing civil war in the Eastern Ukraine has cost the lives of over 13,000 people.

At the same time, the Ukrainian oligarchy has undertaken the most far-reaching attacks on the already low living standards of the Ukrainian working class since the restoration of capitalism. Almost one million Ukrainians are now living on the brink of starvation; tens of thousands are left to freeze in the winter .

For the implementation of these policies, the Poroshenko regime mobilized fascist forces such as the notorious Azov battalion. The glorification of the Nazi collaborators of the UPA and the OUN-B, which massacred thousands of Jews, Poles and Ukrainians during World War II, has become official state policy. References to communism and symbols of the Soviet Red Army, which defeated the Nazis in the war, have been criminalized. Russian artists and works of art have been banned from entering the country.

It is these conditions that propelled the vast majority of the Ukrainian population to either abstain from the elections -- the voter turnout was just 62 percent -- or vote for Zelensky. Poroshenko was unable to garner any significant support outside a small province in West Ukraine and the district in Kiev where the country's super rich reside.

Yet whatever his appeals to antiwar sentiments and the enormous anger about social austerity during the campaign, Zelensky will defend the interests of the Ukrainian oligarchy against the working class, and work in alliance with imperialism.

Throughout the entire election campaign, Zelensky deliberately concealed his real political and economic agenda. He instead relied almost exclusively on demagogic appeals to the widespread hatred of Poroshenko. During the campaign, Zelensky made promises to enter direct negotiations with Russian President Vladimir Putin for a peaceful settlement of the war in East Ukraine. Yet in an interview published days before the election, he called Putin an "enemy" and stated that it was "perfectly fine and great" that people considered the Nazi collaborator Bandera as a "hero."

On April 12, Zelensky met with French President Emmanuel Macron. His team has hired a PR firm in Washington to arrange meetings with officials of the Trump administration and influential think tank figures. Zelensky also maintains close connections to the oligarch Ihor Kolkomoisky, and now seeks to work together with Mikheil Saakashvili, the former president of Georgia, who had been installed through a US-backed "color revolution."...

... ... ...

Clara Weiss

[Apr 28, 2019] As a Russian, I feel disgust at our leaders who squandered all of Russia's historic influence on the Ukraine and gave up

That completely wrong. You can't prevent the "march of history" even if you understand that it is directed against you. The collapse of the USSR put in motion forces for the revolution of the results of WWII. And EuroMaydan like previously Baltic states "Maidans" were the direct result of this dissolution and changed balance of power in Europe with EU now being the dominant force and the USA dominant geopolitical force.
Still it is true that Ukraine EuroMaydan was the major Putin's defeat and the major victory of the US neocons in general and Obama as the President in particular. It might well be that this was inevitable as the trajectory of post-soviet republic is reliable move toward anti-Russian stance as a side effect of obtaining the independence, but still this was a defeat. It was actually Yanukovich who encouraged and helped to organized and finance far right forces and the Party in Ukraine. such a pro-Russian President as fame news media in the USA and GB like to describe him
Poroshenko was the USA SOB. The USA allowed Zelensky to run for office, and allowed him to win. Zelensky is most probably another USA SOB, although only time will tell. Comedians are usually are people with very high IQ who see the absurdity of the current life in Ukraine and Poroshenko regime more clearly then others. The question is whether he will be allowed to do something about it by the USA and EU, who control Ukraine both politically and financially. Biden story of dismissal of the General Prosecutor of Ukraine (who tried to procedure the firm Biden son got money from ) with ease tells us something about the nature of the current governance of Ukraine: is is not even a vassal state -- it is a colony.
Nuland success in pushing Ukrainian nationalists to arm uprising against Yanukovich (pissing EU which signed a treaty with Yanukovich about holding elections, which he would certanly lose, a day before) also can be explained that at this point the USA controlled vital centers of Ukrainian political power including intelligence agencies, several oligarchs (Poroshenko is one; Timoshenko is another) and, especially, media. In Ukraine Western NGO have the status of diplomatic missions (with corresponding immunity), so in no way such a country can be independent in any meaningful sense of this word.
But craziness, aggressiveness and recklessness of the US neocons, who now practice old imperial "might makes right" mode of operation, gives the world some hope. They most probably will burn the USA geological power it acquired after the dissolution of the USSR sooner then many expect. Like look at Bolton and Pompeo recent actions.
Notable quotes:
"... "For better or for worse, Putin has put an end to oligarch rule in Russia. Members of Putin's inner circle may be immensely rich, but they know to whom they owe their wealth. By imprisoning Mikhail Khodorkovsky, Putin sent a clear message to the all-powerful oligarchs that controlled Russia during former president Boris Yeltsin's time: stay out of politics." ..."
Apr 28, 2019 | www.unz.com

Felix Keverich , says: April 25, 2019 at 7:27 am GMT

The main feeling about the entire topic of the Ukraine is one of total disgust, a gradual and painful realization of the fact that our so-called "brothers" are brothers only in the sense of the biblical Cain and the acceptance that there is nobody to talk to in Kiev.

Russia likes to fashion itself as a "great power". A real great power should have been able to insert itself in Ukrainian politics, regardless of any brotherly feelings – you know, like US did.

As a Russian, I feel disgust at our leaders who squandered all of Russia's historic influence on the Ukraine and gave up – poor neo-Soviet dinosaurs got completely outmaneuvered.

aleksandar , says: April 28, 2019 at 7:49 am GMT
@Kiza Read
Try to understand
Read it again
Try to understand
Read it again
Try to understand
"For better or for worse, Putin has put an end to oligarch rule in Russia. Members of Putin's inner circle may be immensely rich, but they know to whom they owe their wealth. By imprisoning Mikhail Khodorkovsky, Putin sent a clear message to the all-powerful oligarchs that controlled Russia during former president Boris Yeltsin's time: stay out of politics."

Vladimir Golstein, professor of Slavic studies at Brown University. He was born in Moscow and emigrated to the United States in 1979.

[Apr 28, 2019] Hi my name is Donald J Trump and I approve this message

Apr 28, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

donkeytale , Apr 28, 2019 10:01:00 AM | link

"Hi my name is Donald J Trump and I approve this message."

[Apr 28, 2019] Let's give the new guy a little time. He actually gave an encouraging sign or two during his campaign if you were paying attention.

Apr 28, 2019 | www.unz.com

JOHN CHUCKMAN , says: Website April 28, 2019 at 2:22 pm GMT

Oh, I do think the author might just be a trifle premature and overly pessimistic.

Let's give the new guy a little time. He actually gave an encouraging sign or two during his campaign if you were paying attention.

Readers may enjoy these related analyses:

https://chuckmanwordsincomments.wordpress.com/2019/04/23/john-chuckman-comment-how-fitting-that-a-comedian-should-be-elected-president-of-ukraine-a-country-reduced-to-a-shambles-by-incompetence-there-are-hints-he-may-try-something-worthwhile-expect-u/

https://chuckmanwordsincomments.wordpress.com/2019/04/27/john-chuckman-comment-meaning-of-putins-easing-of-applications-for-residents-of-breakaway-russian-speaking-eastern-ukraine-donbass-to-apply-for-russian-passports-its-not-really-what-the-autho/

[Apr 28, 2019] Will Poroshenko be jailed for corruption, or the USA will be able to prevent this

There are several crimes for which Poroshenko can be investigated and the USA can do nothing about: one is Odessa massacre which supposedly was financed by Poroshenko. And Kolomysky was also involved so it remain to be seen if this issues will be raised. Also the power of far right forces in Ukraine is such that just raising this question might be equal to treason in the eyes of Ukrainian nationalists. Because such powerful figures as Avakov and Parubiy were also involved.
Notable quotes:
"... Ukrainians don’t give a shit about the Poro regime, and are perfectly willing to see it incarcerated. Nor do NatsBatalions really crave to be seen as puppets of DC, Kolo, or Israel, or Brussels. Your take is really simplistic here. ..."
Apr 28, 2019 | www.unz.com

AmRusDebate , says: April 25, 2019 at 12:04 pm GMT

Kolomoisky. Kolomoisky! Kolomoisky!

you are in fantasy land....

... ... ...

The West is concerned with protecting Poro. Based on WSJ editorials, obsequious legations to manlet Macron. None of that means jack shit.

DC will have to exercise real power to prevent a cleaning of the house. Word are words. Rumors are rumors. Z. will act within his mandate and limits placed by rabid opposition. He will act in keeping with rational need to not fight a US-backed congress, to get shot in the streets for things too radical. Majority of Ukrainians will be happy to see Poro in prison. DC can keep this from happening not with words, but with bullets. Strana can claim what it wants, its claims are patent garbage.

Ukrainians don’t give a shit about the Poro regime, and are perfectly willing to see it incarcerated. Nor do NatsBatalions really crave to be seen as puppets of DC, Kolo, or Israel, or Brussels. Your take is really simplistic here.

... ... ...

Z. does have a party. The elections for the Ukranian Parliament is in September. His party, as a matter of fact, is leading in opinion polls.
https://ria.ru/20190416/1552741067.html And it is doing so together with the party of Boiko.

Logically then, given enough time/space Z. should be in a position to pursue necessary policies end of the year.


peter mcloughlin , says: April 25, 2019 at 1:34 pm GMT

‘The truth is nobody knows what will happen next…There are just too many parameters to consider, and the real balance of power following this election has not manifested itself yet’, as The Saker forebodingly warns. The pattern of history suggests the continent is heading for another world war. https://www.ghostsofhistory.wordpress.com/
The course of events in Europe and globally predict things will only get worse. Like The Saker, ‘I also very much hope that I am wrong.’
Matthiew , says: April 25, 2019 at 1:42 pm GMT
A good article by Adam Garrie

“Russia and Ukraine can finally agree on something. Friendly relations with Israel”

https://eurasiafuture.com/2019/04/21/russia-and-ukraine-can-finally-agree-on-something-friendly-relations-with-israel/

Digital Samizdat , says: April 28, 2019 at 6:31 pm GMT
Am I the only one here who sees a fundamental inconsistency between the following two statements?

Thus, Poroshenko with his immense wealth and his connections can still be a useful tool for the Empire’s control of the Ukraine.

And:

I tend to believe that Poroshenko has outlived his usefulness for the AngloZionists because he became an overnight political corpse.

So which is it, Saker? Is Porky still useful to the AZs or not?

This reminds me of the old joke about economists who can never venture a prediction without saying “one the hand … but on the other hand …”

[Apr 28, 2019] the US gave personal security guarantees to Poroshenko

Notable quotes:
"... Finally, there is Vladimir Groisman, the current prime minister who has kept a very low profile, ..."
"... He might make a much more effective Ukrainian Gauleiter for the Empire than either Poroshenko or Zelenskii. ..."
"... And let's not forget Avakov and Parubii, who are both soaked in innocent blood, and who will try to hold on to their considerable power by using the various Nazi death-squads under their control. ..."
"... there is still the formidable (and relatively popular) Iulia Timoshenko whose political ambitions need to be kept in check. Thus, Poroshenko with his immense wealth and his connections can still be a useful tool for the Empire's control of the Ukraine. ..."
"... The western calculus might also be wrong: for one thing, Zelenskii cannot deliver anything meaningful to the Ukrainian people, most definitely not prosperity or honesty. Pretty soon the Ukrainian people will wake up to realize that when they elected the "new face" of Zelenskii, they ended up with the "not new" face of Kolomoiskii and everything that infamous name entails. ..."
"... Poroshenko's power base is very rapidly eroding because nobody wants to go down with him. I tend to believe that Poroshenko has outlived his usefulness for the AngloZionists because he became an overnight political corpse. But this is the Ukraine, so never say never. ..."
"... Russians have been extremely cautious, and nobody seems to harbor any illusions about Zelenskii. In fact, just a day after his election Zelenskii is already making all sorts of anti-Russian statements. ..."
"... Slap further economic sanctions on the Ukraine (Russia has just banned the export of energy sources to the Ukraine – finally and at last!). ..."
"... The truth is that nobody knows what will happen next, not even Kolomoiskii or Zelenskii himself. There are just too many parameters to consider, and the real balance of power following this election has not manifested itself yet. As for the true aspirations and hopes of the people of the Ukraine, they were utterly ignored: Poroshenko will be replaced by Kolomoiskii, wearing the mask of Zelenskii. Hardly a reason to rejoice ..."
"... But will Zelenskii turn out to be any better? I very much doubt it, even though I also very much hope that I am wrong. ..."
Apr 28, 2019 | strana.ua

As everybody predicted, Poroshenko completely lost the election. As I wrote in my previous column, this is both amazing (considering Poro’s immense and extensive resources and the fact that his opponent was, literally, a clown (ok, a comic if you prefer). His defeat was also so predictable as to be almost inevitable: not only is the man genuinely hated all over the Ukraine (except for the Nazi crackpots of the Lvov region), but he made fatal blunders which made him even more detestable than usual.

Now one could sympathize with Poroshenko: not only did this “Putin the boogeyman” appear to work fantastically well with the main sponsors of the Ukronazi coup and with the legacy Ziomedia, but nobody dared to tell Poroshenko that most Ukrainians were not buying that nonsense at all. The suggestion that all the other candidates are Putin agents is no less ridiculous. The thin veneer of deniability Poroshenko had devised (the poster was not put up by the official Poroshenko campaign but by “volunteers”) failed, everybody immediately saw through it all, and this resulted in Poro’s first big campaign faceplant.

Next came this disaster:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/TYc63d9SvrM

Again, this was not officially Poroshenko’s campaign which made this video, but everybody saw through this one too. The quasi-open threat to murder Zelenskii was received with horror in the Ukraine, and this PR-disaster was Poro’s second faceplant.

Then the poor man “lost it.” I won’t list all the stupid and ridiculous things the man said and did, but I will say that his performance at the much-anticipated debate in the stadium was a disaster too.

The writing had been on the wall for a while now, and this is why the two candidates were summoned to speak to their masters (face to face in Germany and France, by phone with Mr. MAGA) and they were told a few things:

The western calculus is simple: try to keep Poroshenko alive (figuratively and politically) and to see how much of the Rada he can keep. Furthermore, since Zelenskii is extremely weak (he has no personal power base of any kind), Kolomoiskii will have him do exactly as he is told and Kolomoiskii can easily be told to behave by the Empire.

Finally, there is Vladimir Groisman, the current prime minister who has kept a very low profile, who does NOT have blood on his hands (at least when compared to thugs like Turchinov or Avakov) and who has not made any move which would blacklist him with the Kremlin. Groisman is also a Jew (Israel and the Ukraine are now the two countries on the planet in which both the President and the Prime-Minister are Jews; ironic considering the historical lovefest between Jews and Ukrainian nationalists ). He might make a much more effective Ukrainian Gauleiter for the Empire than either Poroshenko or Zelenskii. For the time being, Goisman has already ditched Poroshenko's party and is creating his own.

And let's not forget Avakov and Parubii, who are both soaked in innocent blood, and who will try to hold on to their considerable power by using the various Nazi death-squads under their control. Finally, there is still the formidable (and relatively popular) Iulia Timoshenko whose political ambitions need to be kept in check. Thus, Poroshenko with his immense wealth and his connections can still be a useful tool for the Empire's control of the Ukraine.

The western calculus might also be wrong: for one thing, Zelenskii cannot deliver anything meaningful to the Ukrainian people, most definitely not prosperity or honesty. Pretty soon the Ukrainian people will wake up to realize that when they elected the "new face" of Zelenskii, they ended up with the "not new" face of Kolomoiskii and everything that infamous name entails.

Zelenskii might not have another option than to jail Poroshenko, which he semi-promised to do during the stadium debate. Except that now Zelenskii is saying that he will consult with Poroshenko and might even use him in some official capacity. Yes, campaign promises in the Ukraine are never kept for more than the time it takes to make them. Finally, Poroshenko's power base is very rapidly eroding because nobody wants to go down with him. I tend to believe that Poroshenko has outlived his usefulness for the AngloZionists because he became an overnight political corpse. But this is the Ukraine, so never say never.

Finally, the Empire is also pushing for a reform of the Ukrainian political system to give less powers to the President and more to the Rada. Again, this makes sense considering that Zelenskii is an unknown actor and considering the fact that Rada members are basically on the US payroll (across all parties and factions).

What about Russia in all this?

Well, the Russians have been extremely cautious, and nobody seems to harbor any illusions about Zelenskii. In fact, just a day after his election Zelenskii is already making all sorts of anti-Russian statements. Truly, besides the logical implication of Poroshenko's poster (that a defeat for him would mean a victory for Putin), nobody in Russia is celebrating. The main feeling about the entire topic of the Ukraine is one of total disgust, a gradual and painful realization of the fact that our so-called "brothers" are brothers only in the sense of the biblical Cain and the acceptance that there is nobody to talk to in Kiev. Thus Russia will have to embark on a policy of unilateral actions towards the Ukraine. These could include:

So far, Russian spokespeople have just said that they "respected the vote of the Ukrainian people" and that they will judge Zelenskii "on his actions, not his words". This approach sure seems balanced and reasonable to me.

Conclusion:

The truth is that nobody knows what will happen next, not even Kolomoiskii or Zelenskii himself. There are just too many parameters to consider, and the real balance of power following this election has not manifested itself yet. As for the true aspirations and hopes of the people of the Ukraine, they were utterly ignored: Poroshenko will be replaced by Kolomoiskii, wearing the mask of Zelenskii. Hardly a reason to rejoice

In spite of the large number of electoral candidates, the people of the Ukraine were not given a meaningful choice. So they did the only thing they could do: they voted to kick Poroshenko out. And that sure must have felt great.

But will Zelenskii turn out to be any better? I very much doubt it, even though I also very much hope that I am wrong.

[Apr 28, 2019] Ukraine vs the USA

Apr 28, 2019 | www.unz.com

MarkinPNW , says: April 24, 2019 at 7:14 pm GMT

A clown beat a high profile member of the established political class, due most likely to the voters being disgusted by said political class? Uhmm, where have we seen this before?

[Apr 27, 2019] America will always pick and choose the leaders it props up and tears down. It never was and never will be for humanitarian reasons -- that is a clever veil.

Notable quotes:
"... Why have we supported Nguema, Karimov, and Kagame but not the ones who are thorns in our sides? The reasons are obvious. It's not the lives of their citizens - it's power for the elite class. We intervene abroad because we want to further the interest of the wealthy. ..."
"... America will always pick and choose the leaders it props up and tears down. It never was and never will be for humanitarian reasons -- that is a clever veil. We denounce ethnic cleansing and then fund it. We call for free elections and then support Pinochet, Stroessner, and Videla. ..."
"... Opposing war is a noble and courageous act, and there will always be smears. Opposing war isn't supporting dictators; it's opposing death and destruction in the service of the wealthy. Never believe what they tell you about why they're sending your kids to die. Never. ..."
Apr 27, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Idealistic Realist , Apr 27, 2019 1:24:45 PM | link

Best analysis by a candidate for POTUS ever:

American foreign policy is not a failure. To comfort themselves, observers often say that our leaders -- presidents, advisors, generals -- don't know what they're doing. They do know. Their agenda just isn't what we like to imagine it is.

To quote Michael Parenti: "US policy is not filled with contradictions and inconsistencies. It has performed brilliantly and steadily in the service of those who own most of the world and who want to own all of it."

The vision of our leaders as bunglers, while more accurate than the image of them as valiant public servants, is less accurate and more rose-tinted than the closest approximation of the truth, which is that they are servants of their class interest. That is why we go to war.

Those who buy the elite class's foreign policy BS, about the Emmanuel Goldsteins they conjure up every three years, are fools. Obviously Hussein and Milošević were bad; but "government bad" does not mean we must invade. Wars occur for economic, not humanitarian, reasons.

  • Teodoro Obiang Nguema, the president of Equatorial Guinea, is a kleptocrat, murderer, and alleged cannibal. This is him and his wife with Barack and Michelle Obama.
  • Islam Karimov, the president of Uzbekistan, was said to have boiled political prisoners to death, massacred hundreds of prisoners, and made torture an institution. This is him with John Kerry.
  • Paul Kagame, the president of Rwanda, has been involved in the assassination of political opponents, perpetrated obvious election fraud, and had his term extended until 2034. This is him with Barack and Michelle Obama.

Why have we supported Nguema, Karimov, and Kagame but not the ones who are thorns in our sides? The reasons are obvious. It's not the lives of their citizens - it's power for the elite class. We intervene abroad because we want to further the interest of the wealthy.

America will always pick and choose the leaders it props up and tears down. It never was and never will be for humanitarian reasons -- that is a clever veil. We denounce ethnic cleansing and then fund it. We call for free elections and then support Pinochet, Stroessner, and Videla.

Opposing war is a noble and courageous act, and there will always be smears. Opposing war isn't supporting dictators; it's opposing death and destruction in the service of the wealthy. Never believe what they tell you about why they're sending your kids to die. Never.

Mike Gravel

[Apr 27, 2019] Why Ukraine's Comedian President Is Likely to Be More Joke Than Solution -- Strategic Culture

Zelensky doers not matter much. Other people will define Ukraine both internal and foreign policy.
Notable quotes:
"... The ordinary Ukrainian people are so sick and tired of the militaristic nationalism as well as endemic corruption in Kiev that they voted for someone, anyone, who appears slightly more reasonable. ..."
"... Zelensky has called for direct talks with Russia to help bring about a political settlement. Potentially, this apparently more engaged attitude in Kiev could be key to restoring peace in the region and furthermore resume normal relations with Russia. Moscow has given a cautious welcome to these developments. His landslide victory is certainly a stunning popular repudiation of the anti-Russian mentality of his predecessor, Petro Poroshenko. ..."
"... This suggests that the new Ukrainian president is a "Poroshenko-Lite". The only change is a softening of the anti-Russian rhetoric that has so dominated the Kiev regime since the 2014 CIA-backed coup which ushered in Poroshenko's presidency ..."
"... Moscow is therefore correct to express caution in the political significance of the new Ukrainian president. The Kremlin said it will await substantive action and policy changes, rather than basing its judgment on the vapid words of a TV star-turned-politician ..."
"... Perhaps the clearest conclusion to be drawn is that Ukrainian citizens expressed not so much support for Zelensky – how could they when his manifesto was so utterly vacuous? – but rather his landslide victory was a massive repudiation of the incumbent president and the anti-Russia mentality in Kiev that was such a hallmark of Poroshenko's presidency. ..."
"... For the past five years, the Kiev-dominated Ukrainian state has been nothing but a puppet regime for Washington, NATO and to a lesser extent the European Union. It has served as a spearhead against Russia with vile provocations and slander. It is in fact an abomination of international law and democratic principles. ..."
"... The problem lies in Kiev being a puppet regime for Washington which functions to push an anti-Russia geopolitical agenda. Zelensky is not a solution; his turn at the presidency is merely an intermission break from the ongoing calamity that is Ukraine. ..."
"... The views of individual contributors do not necessarily represent those of the Strategic Culture Foundation. ..."
Apr 27, 2019 | www.strategic-culture.org

The ordinary Ukrainian people are so sick and tired of the militaristic nationalism as well as endemic corruption in Kiev that they voted for someone, anyone, who appears slightly more reasonable.

The stunning victory of TV funny man Vladimir Zelensky in Ukraine's presidential elections has tempted notions of a new opportunity to resolve the conflict in eastern Donbas region. The ongoing war has crippled the entire country, caused over 13,000 deaths and resulted in nearly one million people displaced from their homes.

Zelensky has called for direct talks with Russia to help bring about a political settlement. Potentially, this apparently more engaged attitude in Kiev could be key to restoring peace in the region and furthermore resume normal relations with Russia. Moscow has given a cautious welcome to these developments. His landslide victory is certainly a stunning popular repudiation of the anti-Russian mentality of his predecessor, Petro Poroshenko.

But there are so many contradictions and paradoxes in Ukraine's recent presidential election and its outcome that expectations should be reserved.

For a start, the 41-year-old Zelensky who is a popular TV comedian is a complete political novice. His entire election campaign was vacant in any policy detail. Yes, he did say he wanted to hold direct talks with Moscow to end the nearly five-year war in eastern Ukraine between state forces and pro-Russian separatists. But then only days before his election, Zelensky disparaged Russia as an "aggressor" and described Russian President Vladimir Putin as an "enemy".

The move this week by Russia to grant citizenship to ethnic Russian people from Ukraine's breakaway Donbas region was roundly condemned by Washington and the European Union as undermining Ukraine's sovereignty. Moscow said it was merely fulfilling internationally recognized legal rights of people with Russian heritage. In any case, Zelensky also joined in the ill-considered condemnations against Russia over its passport move.

This suggests that the new Ukrainian president is a "Poroshenko-Lite". The only change is a softening of the anti-Russian rhetoric that has so dominated the Kiev regime since the 2014 CIA-backed coup which ushered in Poroshenko's presidency.

Zelensky has talked previously about implementing the Minsk peace accords signed in 2015, yet he has also contradicted himself by saying he will not grant the Donbas political autonomy or accede to an amnesty for combatants – meaning the war against the ethnic Russian population by the Russophobic Kiev regime will continue. He also – shamefully – made public comments apparently valorizing the Nazi collaborator Stepan Bandera and the latter's fascist followers.

Moscow is therefore correct to express caution in the political significance of the new Ukrainian president. The Kremlin said it will await substantive action and policy changes, rather than basing its judgment on the vapid words of a TV star-turned-politician. There is an analogy here with US President Donald Trump and how his ascent to the White House changed nothing in Washington's hostile policy towards Russia.

Perhaps the clearest conclusion to be drawn is that Ukrainian citizens expressed not so much support for Zelensky – how could they when his manifesto was so utterly vacuous? – but rather his landslide victory was a massive repudiation of the incumbent president and the anti-Russia mentality in Kiev that was such a hallmark of Poroshenko's presidency.

In other words, the ordinary Ukrainian people are so sick and tired of the militaristic nationalism as well as endemic corruption in Kiev that they voted for someone, anyone, who appears slightly more reasonable. Even if that candidate is a comedian with no political vision.

For the past five years, the Kiev-dominated Ukrainian state has been nothing but a puppet regime for Washington, NATO and to a lesser extent the European Union. It has served as a spearhead against Russia with vile provocations and slander. It is in fact an abomination of international law and democratic principles.

There is no sign that things will change fundamentally under this new president in spite of his seemingly more reasonable rhetoric. The hopes of Ukrainians for economic improvement, elimination of corruption by oligarchs and normalization of relations with their compatriots in Donbas and with Russia will likely be dashed. Voting for comedian Vladimir Zelensky as some kind of savior for their numerous woes could turn out to be a very cruel joke.

The problem lies in Kiev being a puppet regime for Washington which functions to push an anti-Russia geopolitical agenda. Zelensky is not a solution; his turn at the presidency is merely an intermission break from the ongoing calamity that is Ukraine. The views of individual contributors do not necessarily represent those of the Strategic Culture Foundation.

Tags: European Union Poroshenko Ukraine Zelensky

[Apr 27, 2019] Ukraine Tapped By Obama Admin To Hurt Trump, Help Clinton And Protect Biden

What other options that full cooperation Poroshenko, being the US marionette has?
Apr 27, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com
In January, 2016, the Obama White House summoned Ukrainian authorities to Washington to discuss several ongoing matters under the guise of coordinating "anti-corruption efforts," reports The Hill 's John Solomon.

The January 2016 gathering, confirmed by multiple participants and contemporaneous memos, brought some of Ukraine's top corruption prosecutors and investigators face to face with members of former President Obama's National Security Council (NSC), FBI, State Department and Department of Justice (DOJ).

The agenda suggested the purpose was training and coordination. But Ukrainian participants said it didn't take long -- during the meetings and afterward -- to realize the Americans' objectives included two politically hot investigations: one that touched Vice President Joe Biden's family and one that involved a lobbying firm linked closely to then-candidate Trump . - The Hill

The Obama officials - likely knowing that lobbyist Paul Manafort was about to join President Trump's campaign soon (he joined that March), were interested in reviving a closed investigation into payments to US figures from Ukraine's pro-Russia Party of Regions - which both Paul Manafort and Tony Podesta did unregistered work for, according to former Ukrainian Embassy political officer Andrii Telizhenko.

The 2014 investigation focused heavily on Manafort , whose firm was tied to Trump through his longtime partner and Trump adviser, Roger Stone.

Agents interviewed Manafort in 2014 about whether he received undeclared payments from the party of ousted Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych , an ally of Russia's Vladimir Putin , and whether he engaged in improper foreign lobbying.

The FBI shut down the case without charging Manafort

Telizhenko and other attendees of the January, 2016 meeting recall DOJ employees asking Ukrainian investigators from their National Anti-Corruption Bureau (NABU) if they could locate new evidence about the Party of Regions' payments to Americans .

"It was definitely the case that led to the charges against Manafort and the leak to U.S. media during the 2016 election," said Telizhenko - which makes the January 2016 gathering in DC one of the earliest documented efforts to compile a case against Trump and those in his orbit.

Nazar Kholodnytskyy, Ukraine's chief anti-corruption prosecutor , told me he attended some but not all of the January 2016 Washington meetings and couldn't remember the specific cases, if any, that were discussed.

But he said he soon saw evidence in Ukraine of political meddling in the U.S. election . Kholodnytskyy said the key evidence against Manafort -- a ledger showing payments from the Party of Regions -- was known to Ukrainian authorities since 2014 but was suddenly released in May 2016 by the U.S.-friendly NABU , after Manafort was named Trump's campaign chairman.

"Somebody kept this black ledger secret for two years and then showed it to the public and the U.S. media. It was extremely suspicious," said Kholodnytskyy - who specifically instructed NABU not to share the "black ledger" with the media.

"I ordered the detectives to give nothing to the mass media considering this case. Instead, they had broken my order and published themselves these one or two pages of this black ledger regarding Paul Manafort," he added. "For me it was the first call that something was going wrong and that there is some external influence in this case. And there is some other interests in this case not in the interest of the investigation and a fair trial."

Manafort joined Trump's campaign on March 29, 2016 and became campaign manager on May 19, 2016. The ledger's existence leaked on May 29, 2016, while Manafort would be fired from the Trump campaign that August.

NABU leaked the existence of the ledgers on May 29, 2016. Later that summer, it told U.S. media the ledgers showed payments to Manafort, a revelation that forced him to resign from the campaign in August 2016.

A Ukrainian court in December concluded NABU's release of the ledger was an illegal attempt to influence the U.S. election. And a member of Ukraine's parliament has released a recording of a NABU official saying the agency released the ledger to help Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton's campaign.

me title=

Ignoring others, protecting Bidens

Kostiantyn Kulyk - deputy head of the Ukraine prosecutor general's international affairs office, said that Ukraine also had evidence of other Western figures receiving money from Yanukovych's party - such as former Obama White House counsel Gregory Craig - but the Americans weren't interested.

"They just discussed Manafort. This was all and only what they wanted. Nobody else," said Kulyk.

Another case raised at the January 2016 meeting involved the Bidens - specifically Burisma Holdings; a Ukrainian energy company which was under investigation at the time for improper foreign transfers of money. Burisma allegedly paid then-Vice President Joe Biden's son Hunter more than $3 million in 2014-15 as both a board member and a consultant, according to bank records .

According to Telizhenko, U.S. officials told the Ukrainians they would prefer that Kiev drop the Burisma probe and allow the FBI to take it over . The Ukrainians did not agree. But then Joe Biden pressured Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to fire Ukraine's chief prosecutor in March 2016 , as I previously reported. The Burisma case was transferred to NABU, then shut down.

The Ukrainian Embassy in Washington on Thursday confirmed the Obama administration requested the meetings in January 2016, but embassy representatives attended only some of the sessions.

Last Wednesday on Fox and Friends, Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani said " I ask you to keep your eye on Ukraine ," referring to collusion to help Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election .

https://www.youtube.com/embed/FDtg8z12Q7s?start=182

What's more, DOJ documents support Telizhenko's claim that the DOJ reopened its Manafort case as the 2016 election ramped up - including communications between Associate Attorney General Bruce Ohr, his wife, Nellie, and ex-British spy Christopher Steele, as Solomon writes.

Nellie Ohr and Steele worked in 2016 for the research firm, Fusion GPS, that was hired by Clinton's campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) to find Russia dirt on Trump. Steele wrote the famous dossier for Fusion that the FBI used to gain a warrant to spy on the Trump campaign. Nellie Ohr admitted to Congress that she routed Russia dirt on Trump from Fusion to the DOJ through her husband during the election.

DOJ emails show Nellie Ohr on May 30, 2016, directly alerted her husband and two DOJ prosecutors specializing in international crimes to the discovery of the "black ledger" documents that led to Manafort's prosecution.

"Reported Trove of documents on Ukrainian Party of Regions' Black Cashbox," Nellie Ohr wrote to her husband and federal prosecutors Lisa Holtyn and Joseph Wheatley, attaching a news article on the announcement of NABU's release of the documents.

Politico reported previously that the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington assisted the Hillary Clinton campaign through a DNC contractor, while the Ukrainian Embassy acknowledges that it got requests from a DNC staffer to find dirt on Manafort (though it denies providing any improper assistance."

As Solomon concludes: "what is already confirmed by Ukrainians looks a lot more like assertive collusion with a foreign power than anything detailed in the Mueller report ."

[Apr 26, 2019] How the Obama White House engaged Ukraine to give Russia collusion narrative an early boost by John Solomon

Notable quotes:
"... Nazar Kholodnytskyy, Ukraine's chief anti-corruption prosecutor, told me he attended some but not all of the January 2016 Washington meetings and couldn't remember the specific cases, if any, that were discussed. ..."
"... But he said he soon saw evidence in Ukraine of political meddling in the U.S. election . Kholodnytskyy said the key evidence against Manafort -- a ledger showing payments from the Party of Regions -- was known to Ukrainian authorities since 2014 but was suddenly released in May 2016 by the U.S.-friendly NABU, after Manafort was named Trump's campaign chairman: "Somebody kept this black ledger secret for two years and then showed it to the public and the U.S. media. It was extremely suspicious." ..."
"... "I ordered the detectives to give nothing to the mass media considering this case. Instead, they had broken my order and published themselves these one or two pages of this black ledger regarding Paul Manafort." ..."
"... Kulyk said Ukrainian authorities had evidence that other Western figures , such as former Obama White House counsel Gregory Craig, also received money from Yanukovych's party. But the Americans weren't interested: "They just discussed Manafort. This was all and only what they wanted. Nobody else." ..."
"... According to Telizhenko, U.S. officials told the Ukrainians they would prefer that Kiev drop the Burisma probe and allow the FBI to take it over. The Ukrainians did not agree. But then Joe Biden pressured Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to fire Ukraine's chief prosecutor in March 2016, as I previously reported. The Burisma case was transferred to NABU, then shut down. ..."
"... The Ukrainian Embassy in Washington on Thursday confirmed the Obama administration requested the meetings in January 2016, but embassy representatives attended only some of the sessions. ..."
"... But Telizhenko's claim that the DOJ reopened its Manafort probe as the 2016 election ramped up is supported by the DOJ's own documents, including communications involving Associate Attorney General Bruce Ohr, his wife, Nellie, and ex-British spy Christopher Steele. ..."
"... DOJ emails show Nellie Ohr on May 30, 2016, directly alerted her husband and two DOJ prosecutors specializing in international crimes to the discovery of the "black ledger" documents that led to Manafort's prosecution. ..."
"... The efforts eventually led to a September 2016 meeting in which the FBI asked Deripaska if he could help prove Manafort was helping Trump collude with Russia. Deripaska laughed off the notion as preposterous. ..."
"... Now we have more concrete evidence that the larger Ukrainian government also was being pressed by the Obama administration to help build the Russia collusion narrative. And that onion is only beginning to be peeled. ..."
"... But what is already confirmed by Ukrainians looks a lot more like assertive collusion with a foreign power than anything detailed in the Mueller report . ..."
Apr 26, 2019 | thehill.com

As Donald Trump began his meteoric rise to the presidency, the Obama White House summoned Ukrainian authorities to Washington to coordinate ongoing anti-corruption efforts inside Russia's most critical neighbor.

The January 2016 gathering, confirmed by multiple participants and contemporaneous memos, brought some of Ukraine's top corruption prosecutors and investigators face to face with members of former President Obama's National Security Council (NSC), FBI, State Department and Department of Justice (DOJ).

That makes the January 2016 meeting one of the earliest documented efforts to build the now-debunked Trump-Russia collusion narrative and one of the first to involve the Obama administration's intervention.

Spokespeople for the NSC, DOJ and FBI declined to comment. A representative for former Obama national security adviser Susan Rice did not return emails seeking comment.

Nazar Kholodnytskyy, Ukraine's chief anti-corruption prosecutor, told me he attended some but not all of the January 2016 Washington meetings and couldn't remember the specific cases, if any, that were discussed.

But he said he soon saw evidence in Ukraine of political meddling in the U.S. election . Kholodnytskyy said the key evidence against Manafort -- a ledger showing payments from the Party of Regions -- was known to Ukrainian authorities since 2014 but was suddenly released in May 2016 by the U.S.-friendly NABU, after Manafort was named Trump's campaign chairman: "Somebody kept this black ledger secret for two years and then showed it to the public and the U.S. media. It was extremely suspicious."

Kholodnytskyy said he explicitly instructed NABU investigators who were working with American authorities not to share the ledger with the media. "Look, Manafort's case is one of the cases that hurt me a lot," he said.

"I ordered the detectives to give nothing to the mass media considering this case. Instead, they had broken my order and published themselves these one or two pages of this black ledger regarding Paul Manafort."

"For me it was the first call that something was going wrong and that there is some external influence in this case. And there is some other interests in this case not in the interest of the investigation and a fair trial," he added.

Kostiantyn Kulyk, deputy head of the Ukraine prosecutor general's international affairs office, said that, shortly after Ukrainian authorities returned from the Washington meeting, there was a clear message about helping the Americans with the Party of the Regions case.

"Yes, there was a lot of talking about needing help and then the ledger just appeared in public," he recalled.

Kulyk said Ukrainian authorities had evidence that other Western figures , such as former Obama White House counsel Gregory Craig, also received money from Yanukovych's party. But the Americans weren't interested: "They just discussed Manafort. This was all and only what they wanted. Nobody else."

Manafort joined Trump's campaign on March 29, 2016, and then was promoted to campaign chairman on May 19, 2016.

NABU leaked the existence of the ledgers on May 29, 2016. Later that summer, it told U.S. media the ledgers showed payments to Manafort, a revelation that forced him to resign from the campaign in August 2016.

A Ukrainian court in December concluded NABU's release of the ledger was an illegal attempt to influence the U.S. election. And a member of Ukraine's parliament has released a recording of a NABU official saying the agency released the ledger to help Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton's campaign.

The other case raised at the January 2016 meeting, Telizhenko said, involved Burisma Holdings , a Ukrainian energy company under investigation in Ukraine for improper foreign transfers of money. At the time, Burisma allegedly was paying then-Vice President Joe Biden's son Hunter as both a board member and a consultant. More than $3 million flowed from Ukraine to an American firm tied to Hunter Biden in 2014-15, bank records show .

According to Telizhenko, U.S. officials told the Ukrainians they would prefer that Kiev drop the Burisma probe and allow the FBI to take it over. The Ukrainians did not agree. But then Joe Biden pressured Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to fire Ukraine's chief prosecutor in March 2016, as I previously reported. The Burisma case was transferred to NABU, then shut down.

The Ukrainian Embassy in Washington on Thursday confirmed the Obama administration requested the meetings in January 2016, but embassy representatives attended only some of the sessions.

"Unfortunately, the Embassy of Ukraine in Washington, D.C., was not invited to join the DOJ and other law enforcement-sector meetings," it said. It said it had no record that the Party of Regions or Burisma cases came up in the meetings it did attend.

Ukraine is riddled with corruption, Russian meddling and intense political conflicts, so one must carefully consider any Ukrainian accounts.

But Telizhenko's claim that the DOJ reopened its Manafort probe as the 2016 election ramped up is supported by the DOJ's own documents, including communications involving Associate Attorney General Bruce Ohr, his wife, Nellie, and ex-British spy Christopher Steele.

Nellie Ohr and Steele worked in 2016 for the research firm, Fusion GPS, that was hired by Clinton's campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) to find Russia dirt on Trump. Steele wrote the famous dossier for Fusion that the FBI used to gain a warrant to spy on the Trump campaign. Nellie Ohr admitted to Congress that she routed Russia dirt on Trump from Fusion to the DOJ through her husband during the election.

DOJ emails show Nellie Ohr on May 30, 2016, directly alerted her husband and two DOJ prosecutors specializing in international crimes to the discovery of the "black ledger" documents that led to Manafort's prosecution.

"Reported Trove of documents on Ukrainian Party of Regions' Black Cashbox," Nellie Ohr wrote to her husband and federal prosecutors Lisa Holtyn and Joseph Wheatley, attaching a news article on the announcement of NABU's release of the documents.

Bruce Ohr and Steele worked on their own effort to get dirt on Manafort from a Russian oligarch, Oleg Deripaska, who had a soured business relationship with him. Deripaska was "almost ready to talk" to U.S. government officials regarding the money that "Manafort stole," Bruce Ohr wrote in notes from his conversations with Steele.

The efforts eventually led to a September 2016 meeting in which the FBI asked Deripaska if he could help prove Manafort was helping Trump collude with Russia. Deripaska laughed off the notion as preposterous.

Previously, Politico reported that the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington assisted Clinton's campaign through a DNC contractor. The Ukrainian Embassy acknowledges it got requests for assistance from the DNC staffer to find dirt on Manafort but denies it provided any improper assistance.

Now we have more concrete evidence that the larger Ukrainian government also was being pressed by the Obama administration to help build the Russia collusion narrative. And that onion is only beginning to be peeled.

But what is already confirmed by Ukrainians looks a lot more like assertive collusion with a foreign power than anything detailed in the Mueller report .

John Solomon is an award-winning investigative journalist whose work over the years has exposed U.S. and FBI intelligence failures before the Sept. 11 attacks, federal scientists' misuse of foster children and veterans in drug experiments, and numerous cases of political corruption. He serves as an investigative columnist and executive vice president for video at The Hill. Follow him on Twitter @jsolomonReports

[Apr 26, 2019] Trump's Envoy to Ukraine is Paid by None Other Than Poroshenko Himself! by Nebojsa Malic

Notable quotes:
"... According to its filings to the US Department of Justice under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), BGR is a registered agent for none other than President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, whose ascension to Ukrainian presidency was brought about by the Maidan revolution of 2014, a coup cheered on most fervently by John McCain himself. ..."
"... It remains to be seen whether this relationship will change in June, when TV personality Volodymyr Zelensky takes office, having triumphed in a landslide runoff election this past weekend. Judging by Zelensky's official Facebook account of his February meeting with Volker – "a friend of Ukraine" with whom he "reached full understanding on all questions" – that seems unlikely, however. ..."
"... Turns out another McCain confidant, David Kramer , also works at Volker's institute, listed as "senior director for Human Rights and Democracy." Kramer was identified as the individual who during the 2016 campaign spread the "Steele Dossier" (accusing Trump of ties with Russia) to the press and a number of other people in Washington, including the "midwife of Maidan" herself, Victoria Nuland. ..."
Apr 26, 2019 | ronpaulinstitute.org

US special envoy for Ukraine Kurt Volker is drawing a salary from John McCain's think tank, which is funded by George Soros and a DC lobbying firm working for Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, among others.

Volker was appointed Special Representative for Ukraine negotiations in July 2017, by then-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and has been "mediating" the Ukrainian crisis on behalf of the US ever since in much the same way his colleague Elliott Abrams has been doing with Venezuela.

The twist is that Volker is doing this " on a voluntary basis without compensation" and "not taxing the taxpayers," drawing a salary from his day job as executive director of the McCain Institute for International Leadership in Arizona. Named after the late and hawkish US senator John McCain, the think tank is dedicated to "advancing leadership in the United States and around the world." The two positions are very much aligned, Volker has said, allowing him to get his "hands dirty and actually solve our problems."

In practice, that means things like taking part in the "Occupied Crimea: 5 years of resistance" conference in Odessa – the same city where US-backed nationalists burned alive their political opponents in May 2014 – and parroting Bellingcat talking points on the Kerch Strait incident, themselves cribbed from the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU).

This is not surprising, however, since the list of donors of the McCain Institute includes something called the "BGR Foundation." It shares the same Washington, DC address – and name – with Barbour Griffith Rogers, a high-profile lobbying firm that lists Volker as "Senior International Advisor" and former international managing director.

Volker is still listed as part of the team at BGR .

According to its filings to the US Department of Justice under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), BGR is a registered agent for none other than President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, whose ascension to Ukrainian presidency was brought about by the Maidan revolution of 2014, a coup cheered on most fervently by John McCain himself.

The "National Reforms Council of Ukraine," which officially retained BGR's services, is led by none other than Dmytro Shymkiv, "Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration of Ukraine," as per the filing BGR sent to the DOJ in January 2017.

It remains to be seen whether this relationship will change in June, when TV personality Volodymyr Zelensky takes office, having triumphed in a landslide runoff election this past weekend. Judging by Zelensky's official Facebook account of his February meeting with Volker – "a friend of Ukraine" with whom he "reached full understanding on all questions" – that seems unlikely, however.

Whose envoy?

Volker was very close to the late Senator McCain, who was himself intimately involved with the 2014 "revolution" in Kiev, visiting the demonstrators and personally sharing the stage with Socialist-Nationalist Party leader Oleg Tyahnibok, for example. McCain was even offered an advisory job with Poroshenko, back in 2015, but declined because that was not allowed under US law.

Turns out another McCain confidant, David Kramer , also works at Volker's institute, listed as "senior director for Human Rights and Democracy." Kramer was identified as the individual who during the 2016 campaign spread the "Steele Dossier" (accusing Trump of ties with Russia) to the press and a number of other people in Washington, including the "midwife of Maidan" herself, Victoria Nuland.

Among the McCain Institute's other donors are George Soros and his Open Society Foundations, as well as Saudi Arabia – though Volker had to disavow them last year, calling it a one-time donation and saying he won't accept any more Saudi cash after the murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi.

All of this adds up to the question no one seems to have asked yet: Whose interests in Ukraine is Kurt Volker actually representing – those of the Trump administration, or those of his donors and the ghost of John McCain?

Reprinted with permission from RT .

[Apr 26, 2019] No, Ukraine's New President Zelenksiy Is Not Putin's Puppet by Kenneth Rapoza

No he is not. But he is the US puppet. Yet another neoliberal that will fleece Ukraine for the benefit of international financial oligarchy.
The article is a usual incompetent neocon/neolib garbage and does not demonstrate any knowledge of the Ukrainian political situation. But one paragraph does make sense. Zelensky was like Trump: he was elected because the other candidate was despicable corrupt warmonger
The level of connections of Zelensky to oligarch Ihor Kolomoyskyi and Soros is still unclear. Kolomoyskyi was rumored as one of the initiator and sponsors of Odessa massacre and the financier of pro-Nazi Azov battalion (he is now hiding from persecution for his financial crimes in Israel) .
The only question about Zelensky is whose puppet he is. Anyway Poor Ukraine is up top another round of stripping its wealth by oligarchs and foreign financial sharks, while the standard of living will deteriorate and stay of the same dismal level as now (essentially Central African poverty level).
Any attempt of Zelensky to escape the puppet status will be cut in short. In no way he can depose key officials from Nuland junta which came in power in 2014, or challenge the power of the US embassy over Ukraine. With Biden in the past routinely firing Ukrainian Chief Prosecutor, when he start digging on his son dealings in Ukraine.
Apr 26, 2019 | www.forbes.com

Poroshenko lost not because Zelenskiy was better. Although hard to measure, it is perceived by some in Ukraine's parliament that a vote for Zelenskiy was simply an anti-Poroshenko vote, rather than a truly pro-Zelenskiy one.

[Apr 25, 2019] Petro Poroshenko's Nationalism Cost Him the Presidency The National Interest

Apr 25, 2019 | nationalinterest.org

Petro Poroshenko's Nationalism Cost Him the Presidency

This is one of the lessons that Western policymakers can learn from Poroshenko's crushing defeat.

by Nicolai N. Petro , vpurto 2 hours ago ,

Ukraine with the help of lunatics in the Washington, DC is moving to the right direction in order to become Malorussia soon. It will not take long. Chervonarussia a.k.a. Ruthenia in Hapsburg newspeak will take longer time. However, people in that region still identify themselves as Russinians (Русины). With coming dissolution of once Anglo-German-Dutch City-on-the-Hill into amorphous salad of different cultures and total loss internal cohesion we may see comparative bloodless transition to new era.

VadimKharichkov vpurto 29 minutes ago ,

Far-fetched. The US is too big and too important to fall or diminish quickly.

Swift Laggard II VadimKharichkov 4 minutes ago ,

the gfc tells us otherwise. a financial collapse is a probable scenario; leading to a prolonged depression. May not be the catastrophic vision our friend has in mind, but would be pretty bad. Even in today's great economy forty million are living in poverty. Another financial collapse could see that number double

Gary Sellars 11 hours ago ,

"What lessons can Western policymakers learn from Poroshenko's crushing defeat?"

A pointless question as the US/EU establishment don't seem to be able to accept the reality of what is happening, and won't accept any lessons as that might get in the way of the Neoliberal globalist expansionist agenda and undermine its supporting narratives.

Zelensky won't be a quantum improvement, but at least he isn't a raving Ultra-nationalist looney. He's not much more that the Ukro version of Frances Micron, a political light-weight foisted onto the public by the mostly-hidden hand of corrupt Oilgarchs. Ukraines rot from within will continue...

VadimKharichkov 18 hours ago ,

As most Russians, I don't have high hopes for Zelensky. Almost certainly, his campaign was bankrolled by oligarch Kolomoisky. So he will represent the interests of large money, not of Ukranian people. And he will have to deal with these crazy nationalists, which are over 25% of population. And the debts with IMF strings attached. He stood on his knees at the debate with Poroshenko - I think he will have to be forced to do that more often than that during his presidency.

Сергей Александров VadimKharichkov 14 hours ago ,

I don't have much faith in Zelensky either. I wish Ukraine had leader that represented population and could end war in Donbass.

Gary Sellars Сергей Александров 11 hours ago ,

Donbass will remain the festering wound in Ukraines side that weakens and eventually destroys the accursed Banderite state. Russia needs to keep up the pressure and ensure that the DPR/LPR can defend themselves against the Kiev regime and make sure the nationalist whack-jobs understand that any attempt to seizethe territory of Free Ukraine will result in a world of pain descending on their heads. Time is on Russia's side as the US loses focus, the EU loses interest, and the harsh realities of geo-politics and economics takes its toll on the bumbling tin-pot kleptocracy that Ukr has become.

Vladdy 19 hours ago ,

I'd like to wish Ukrainians better life with new president. But I'm afraid it's the same piece of sh**t as Parashenko.

Vladdy 19 hours ago ,

Parashenko is criminal. The same as Saakashvili. Both shelled peaceful living homes from artillery and with rockets. They both deserve to be hanged. But the West calls them "democrats".

Gary Sellars Vladdy 11 hours ago ,

Western policy is infinitely malleable and adaptable to whatever agenda they want to pursue. They will defend the Banderite madhouse in Ukropistan as a "democracy" (even as it makes war on its own people) yet insist that Venezuela is a dictatorship, despite the free and fair elections that return the Chavistas to power, time and time again. They will rail against Russia for being "corrupt" (even though they jail senior figures who still try to extract Yeltsin-era "tributes") yet strain their collectives necks as they look away from watching Ukr regime insiders conduct outright theft of IMF loan cash.

R. Arandas a day ago ,

Sometimes, too little pride in one's nation can be a problem, providing no sense of cohesion, purpose or unity. And sometimes, too much pride can also be equally problematic.

Lee Holland 2 days ago ,

Wonder how much the Russians interfered in this election?

Gary Sellars Lee Holland 11 hours ago ,

Define "interfered"? Reporting on Ukraine's corruption culture is "interference"? Now compare it to what the US is doing in Venezuela.

Do you people have no shame?????

Vladdy Lee Holland 19 hours ago ,

Look under your bed. How many Russian spies are there?

[Apr 25, 2019] Poroshenko as a proof the Obama was right wing politician, a neocon disguised as a democrat (or CIA-democrat in short)

Apr 25, 2019 | angrybearblog.com

ilsm , April 23, 2019 9:15 pm

pgl,

... ... ...

You read Mueller, his report is affirmation for your Trump Derangement Syndrome..

Mueller's report is babbling appealing to Clinton followers ultra nationalist far right wing views disguised as a democratic.

Read the rest. Lester Holt and Clinton could be Petro Poroshenko the strong man Obama's state dept imposed on Ukraine in 2014.

The Whittington thing on Mueller no indictment report which mind reads the Russians and trump aides.

https://niskanencenter.org/blog/reckoning-with-the-mueller-report-volume-one/

Is it liberal to complain about not being hard enough on Russia?

Interesting that Hillary Clinton said Trump was a "Russian puppet" (probably after Obama sent the FBI after the GOP campaign) and NBC's Holt (Nov 9 2016) said the US election was a Russian coup. Since when (except maybe if Joe McCarthy were a democrat).

A parallel maybe. In Ukraine since 2004 the popularly elected president was deposed twice by extreme right wing ultra nationalists. In 2014 the popular Yanukovych was deposed in the Maidan revolution with help from the US replaced with no election by Petro Poroshenko.

Sunday we hear that a comedian Zelenskiy soundly beat Poroshenko in a popular vote.

To this Poroshenko: "Poroshenko said on social media he thought Zelenskiy's win would spark celebrations in the Kremlin."

"They believe that with a new inexperienced Ukrainian president, Ukraine could be quickly returned to Russia's orbit of influence," he wrote.

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/ukraine-elections-comedian-volodymyr-zelenskiy-declares-victory-presidential-race-n996776

Clinton and Holt could be writing for Poroshenko, a far right wing ultra nationalist!

I worry a lot about Obama's spying on the Trump campaign and the supposed liberals in this country sounding like far right, ultra nationalist, looking for a new, expensive cold war!

[Apr 24, 2019] The circus of horrors in the Kaganat of Nuland

Apr 24, 2019 | www.unz.com

annamaria , says: April 24, 2019 at 7:11 pm GMT

The circus of horrors in the Kaganat of Nuland: https://thesaker.is/zelenskii-beat-poroshenko-what-will-happen-next/&#8230 ;

Israel and the Ukraine are now the two countries on the planet in which both the President [Zelenskii] and the Prime-Minister [Groisman] are Jews

just a day after his election Zelenskii is already making all sorts of anti-Russian statements.

since Zelenskii has no personal power base of any kind, Kolomoiskii will have him do exactly as he is told and Kolomoiskii can easily be told to behave by the Empire.

Here is a new ruler of Ukraine, the Israeli/Ukrainian/Swiss citizen Kolomoisky :

"Billionaire Ukrainian Oligarch Ihor Kolomoisky Under Investigation by FBI" https://www.thedailybeast.com/billionaire-ukrainian-oligarch-ihor-kolomoisky-under-investigation-by-fbi

The ethnically Jewish Kolomojsky has been the main financier of Azov Battalion :

The Azov Battalion was initially formed out of the neo-Nazi gang Patriot of Ukraine. Azov Battalion -- which is accused of human-rights abuses, including torture, by Human Rights Watch and the United Nations -- was incorporated into Ukraine's National Guard.

The New York Times called the battalion "openly neo-Nazi," while USA Today, The Daily Beast, The Telegraph, and Haaretz documented group members' proclivity for swastikas, salutes, and other Nazi symbols

https://www.thenation.com/article/neo-nazis-far-right-ukraine/

[Apr 24, 2019] Ukraine An Election for the Oligarchs by Volodymyr Ishchenko

Apr 24, 2019 | socialistproject.ca

March 20, 2019

Five years after the " EuroMaidan " protests in Kiev and elsewhere toppled the government of now-exiled former president Viktor Yanukovych, the people of Ukraine are set to elect a new leader. Over 34 million Ukrainian citizens will be eligible to cast their vote on 31 March , although several million will be prevented from participating due to the ongoing conflict situation in the country's eastern Donbass region. Should none of the candidates receive an absolute majority, a second round of voting will be held on 21 April.

Ukraine consistently ranks among the poorest countries in Europe – last year it overtook Moldova to occupy the top spot in the list. The largest post-Soviet state after Russia in terms of population, it finds itself torn between the European Union promising economic integration and a limited degree of freedom of movement, and deepening the country's relationship with Moscow, the largest consumer of Ukrainian exports to which Ukraine is tied by centuries of shared history, tradition, and repeated conflict.

EuroMaidan exacerbated the country's ongoing economic decline and mounting social pressures in 2013–14, ultimately triggering the war in the Donbass region and the Russian annexation of the Crimean peninsula. These tensions have facilitated the rise of a vicious Ukrainian nationalism that the government led by current president Petro Poroshenko is not afraid to manipulate for its own purposes. Attacks on left-wing activists and ethnic minorities are becoming increasingly common, while armed far-right paramilitaries like the so-called "Azov Battalion" are normalized and integrated into mainstream political life.

That said, not everyone in Ukraine is happy about these developments. Although none of the candidates in the upcoming elections offer a particularly radical or progressive vision for the country, voters will at least be able to decide whether to endorse Poroshenko's current course or throw their support behind another figure. Loren Balhorn of the Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung spoke with Kiev-based sociologist Volodymyr Ishchenko to get a better understanding of the candidates, the state of the county, and what is at stake for the people of Ukraine in 2019.

Loren Balhorn (LB): Ukraine is scheduled to hold presidential elections at the end of the month, preceding elections to the national parliament , or "Verkhovna Rada," later this year. Is there anything special about the timing? What exactly is the president's role in the Ukrainian political system, and what implications will the vote have for parliamentary elections in October?

Volodymyr Ishchenko (VI): The timing is simple: it's been five years since 2014 and the Maidan Uprising, when snap elections were called that saw Viktor Yanukovych and his Party of Regions lose a lot of strength. The first round of the presidential elections is at the end of the month, and it is very likely that there will be a second round because no candidate will receive over 50 per cent (at least according to polls).

The president is very important in Ukrainian politics. The country is formally a parliamentary-presidential system, neither fully parliamentary nor fully presidential, but this is a very uneasy balance of power. The prime minister is an important position elected by the parliamentary majority, but the president also has influence over important government ministers. As is true of many post-Soviet states, however, beyond this formal institutional division of powers the informal divisions are much more decisive. Who is loyal to whom and who is dependent on whom plays a much bigger role in "real" Ukrainian politics than formal powers and privileges.

Petro Poroshenko , the current president, is the most important person in Ukrainian politics. His powers are formally limited but he has other ways to exercise influence and his own party, the "Petro Poroshenko Bloc" that forms the government together with the "People's Front," the party of former Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk. Another important figure in that party is the current Minister of Internal Affairs, Arsen Avakov , who is also a very wealthy man.

LB: Avakov also cultivates ties to the Azov Battalion, no?

VI: This is widely suspected, but the precise nature of those ties has never been proven. I am skeptical of the idea that the Azov Battalion is merely a puppet of Avakov, I suspect it is something like a mutually beneficial cooperation.

If Poroshenko loses we will see a lot of defections by MPs from his bloc. Ukrainian politics operates as what political scientists call a "neopatrimonial regime," meaning it is characterized by rival, informal power blocs. If the Poroshenko Bloc loses, it will reshuffle loyalties in the parliament from one patriarch to another.

LB: What do you mean by "neopatrimonial regime"?

VI: By that I mean Ukrainian politics is characterized by competition between various power blocs, you could also call them pyramids or even clans. Poroshenko builds his pyramid while Arakov builds his own pyramid, etc. The current Prime Minister, Volodymyr Groysman, was originally perceived as a loyalist of Poroshenko, but now even he seems to be cultivating his own pyramid and will probably triangulate between various political blocs.

LB: How did Groysman come to replace Yatsenyuk?

VI: As friction between Poroshenko and Yatsenyuk grew, Poroshenko financed a public campaign against him, attacking him and calling for his resignation. But Yatsenyuk had a lot of support from the West, especially the U.S. Vice-President at the time, Joe Biden. Eventually an agreement was reached that he would step down and be replaced by Groysman.

This represented a conflict between different patrimonial structures within the governing elite, but also reflected a wider conflict between Ukrainian oligarchs and the West more generally. Many leftists in Ukraine see the country as a colony of the United States, but it's much more complicated than that. Ukraine is definitely dependent on Western economic and financial aid, political support against Russia, etc., but it's not a colony – it's not ruled from the American Embassy. Local oligarchs like Poroshenko and Arakov have their own interests that they defend staunchly against the West. At its core, this is a conflict between transnational capital and the local bourgeoisie.

One key issue in these debates, and the crucial issue for the West and the IMF, was corruption and the establishment of "anti-corruption" institutions to ensure transparent rules of the game in Ukraine. But what they call "corruption" is basically the most important advantage that the Ukrainian bourgeoisie has against transnational capital: namely, their property is secure from the state while that of their competitors is not. This is also what scares away potential international investors. Because of this fear, foreign direct investment (FDI) is actually declining despite the Ukrainian government's steps toward Western integration.

LB: So fear of corruption is harming investment?

VI: Yes, although the war is of course another factor.

In the beginning, in 2014 and 2015, we had a lot of people in the government without Ukrainian citizenship who received their positions because they were neoliberal, Western-oriented professionals, like the Lithuanian citizen Aivaras Abromavičius who was a minister under Yatsenyuk. Gradually, those neoliberal reformers were pushed out and replaced by people loyal to the ruling oligarchs. Yatsenyuk being replaced by Groysman was just one particularly important example of this process.

LB: It sounds like a pretty grim scenario. But even if electoral politics is just competition between oligarchic factions, certainly there must be some other issues being debated at least on the surface? What are the dominant themes the candidates are using to attract support?

VI: Poroshenko has been most successful in setting the agenda with an aggressively nationalist campaign – his main slogan is "Army, Faith, Language." He side-lined the socially populist issues that Yulia Tymoshenko tried to raise by portraying the election as a choice between him or Putin and depicting his opponents as puppets of Moscow.

LB: And is it working?

VI: Yes, to some extent. His support has been rising in the polls since the recognition of the independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church by the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.

LB: Was that split between the Ukrainian Church and Moscow supported by the government?

VI: Yes, it was actively organized by Poroshenko as a strategy to win the election. Formally, the Ukrainian Orthodox church enjoyed broad autonomy but was dependent on the Moscow Patriarchate and was recognized by other Orthodox churches. A separate church founded in the early 1990s, the Kiev Patriarchate, was unrecognized by any other international church but still fairly popular in the country. In reality most people didn't care which church they attended. The split was purely political, there were no theological differences.

Poroshenko started to push the theme in 2017 and 2018 that the Ukrainian Orthodox Church was something like an "agent of Moscow" in Ukraine. The details are quite complicated, and to be honest many people in Ukraine didn't really understand these structures until last year either, but for people who care about national issues, who care about Ukraine asserting itself against Russia, this was an important step. Nevertheless, it looks like the majority of local parishes will actually stay with the Moscow Patriarchate.

LB: You have alluded to the conflict with Russia several times now as setting the terms of the debate, and making it easier for politicians to distract from social questions by focusing on nationalism. Is there any kind of visible, vaguely progressive social opposition in the country?

VI: Most politicians and the three leading candidates for the president are not significantly different on the question of the conflict in the Donbass region. Poroshenko, Tymoshenko, and Volodymyr Zelensky are all within the patriotic consensus, although Poroshenko is more militant. Candidates who actually have a different opinion and are not as popular sprang from the former Party of Regions, later branded the "Opposition Bloc." They failed to negotiate a common candidate for the so-called "Southeast," the region where the Russian-speaking minority mostly lives. Despite raising important issues like peace in Donbass, re-claiming national sovereignty from the West, and re-industrialization, these candidates – Yuriy Boyko and Oleksandr Vilkul – are representatives of major oligarchic financial-industrial groups. There is no significant "grassroots" movement behind the issues. There are of course labour struggles, and there have been some strikes, but they are weak. There are some feminist mobilizations but they are miniscule compared to the radical nationalists. Not just the anti-capitalist "Left," but also progressive liberalism is very weak.

The Left is in a bad situation. The Communist Party has been banned. They are appealing the ban but their public visibility has declined to practically zero. Their leader, Petro Symonenko, tried to register as a presidential candidate but was not accepted by the government, and no other relevant left-wing parties exist on the national level.

LB: Government corruption, oligarchic control of the economy, a decimated Left – a lot of this sounds familiar. Couldn't we, at least to some extent, compare conditions in Ukraine to the situation in all of the former Eastern Bloc countries?

VI: I don't think so. EU membership makes a big difference, it imposes certain rules that are absent in Ukraine. The presence of strong oligarchs, for example, is pretty specific. The other Eastern Bloc countries don't have a strong local bourgeoisie, but are largely dominated by Western capital. There are no Polish oligarchs, Czech oligarchs, Hungarian oligarchs – we only hear about Russian and Ukrainian oligarchs. What makes Ukraine different is that the oligarchic system is pluralistic. We have multiple, competing oligarchs, whereas in Russia and Belarus one neopatrimonial pyramid managed to emerge as dominant in the last 15 years.

The promise of EU membership restructured Eastern European politics beginning in the 1990s, whereas this was never a prospect in Ukraine, Russia, or Belarus. But we still didn't see the rise of any figure like Vladimir Putin or an Alexander Lukashenko in Ukraine. I think this has to do with the country's divided identity: almost every election has been framed as a question of "East vs. West," with one candidate supported by the western half and the other by the eastern half. In this sense it's comparable with Donald Trump: any time a Ukrainian president comes to power he is opposed by half the population from day one. This makes it very difficult to consolidate nationwide power.

LB: Are there not also economic aspects to the East/West division?

VI: Yes, the East has more heavy, Soviet-era industry, exporting primarily to the markets of the former USSR and uncompetitive on Western markets. For example, the people supporting Yanukovych and opposing EuroMaidan were at least partially concerned about keeping their jobs in a Ukrainian economy dominated by the EU.

LB: So it's not only a nationalist issue, but also one of bread-and-butter economic issues?

VI: Yes, absolutely.

LB: Speaking of "East vs. West," has anything changed since Ukraine's accession to the visa-free regime for Schengen states in 2017?

VI: That was one of very few positive developments under Poroshenko, and he's touting it a lot during the campaign. Freedom of movement is of course something good and something we support, but it was particularly good for younger, highly educated Ukrainians in the major cities.

It has also facilitated increased labour migration, which has really risen since 2014. I don't have any precise statistics but we're talking about millions of people. Many Ukrainians go to work in Poland, which actively recruits them because they are seen as culturally and linguistically "closer" to Poles (unlike refugees from the Middle East). You could say that cheap Ukrainian labour is subsidizing the Polish economic boom. The Czech Republic is also popular, and Germany will probably be next.

As workers from the eastern EU states like Bulgaria and Poland move west to work they're replaced by cheaper labour from Ukraine, but no one moves to Ukraine. There is a lot of discussion in the Ukrainian media about how it simply does not make sense to work in the country when you can make two or three times more across the border.

LB: But does this not mean that the Ukrainian labour market is gradually getting tighter? Wouldn't it at least theoretically put organized labour in a more advantageous position to fight for higher wages?

VI: Yes, theoretically! But Ukrainian trade unions are very weak, and they have failed to take advantage of the situation.

LB: You recently gave an interview to Jacobin Magazine in which you compared the situation of the Ukrainian Left with that of Latin America in the 1970s. I found that very striking, given that the Left was quite large in Latin America at the time and microscopic in Ukraine today. Could you flesh out that comparison a bit? Where exactly do you see similarities?

VI: Ukraine is a deindustrializing, peripheral economy. Most Soviet-era industry fell apart after 1991, and what remains is not competitive on the Western European market. Ukraine has thus become a supplier of raw materials with low added value like iron. In this sense it is a very peripheral capitalism characterized by extreme inequality and powerful oligarchs, like Latin America. There is also the major role played by far-right paramilitaries – this doesn't happen anywhere else in Europe, except for briefly in former Yugoslavia. We also have a strongly pro-American and highly dependent government, very similar to Latin America.

I think it's logical to look for comparisons and lessons from similar historical social formations. If the Ukrainian Left is looking to fight a corrupt, authoritarian, anti-Communist regime, and given how weak the Left and even liberalism is, we have to work together to fight for basic democratic rights and against the nationalist hysteria to lay the base for a movement that could perhaps become more significant in the future. Here I see parallels to the Latin American Left's struggle against dictatorship in the 1970s and 1980s.

LB: Do you think it's possible in a geopolitical situation where tensions between the EU and Russia are so prominent to formulate a broad, democratic programme that stands above this fray?

VI: It's obviously very difficult, but what other options do we have? Become puppets in the geopolitical game? There was a split on the Left in 2014 when many chose EuroMaidan and the "West" while others chose Anti-Maidan and the "Russian" side. Both sides ended up tailing more powerful right-wing forces and failed to formulate their own independent positions.

LB: But would anything else have been possible?

VI: Well, obviously we can't seriously entertain the building of a strong left-wing party under such difficult conditions. What is possible, however, is to maintain some kind of milieu for left-wing ideas. The groups and networks that exist have to consolidate a possible embryo for a strong Left in the future. It's important to be realistic and understand what's possible or completely impossible. We might not be able to formulate some kind of "Third Camp" in Ukrainian politics right now, but that is our objective situation, and we should try to figure out what we can realistically do. We should work on strengthening our groups, our unions, our intellectual initiatives, to hopefully be able to do something bigger in the future.

Corbyn, Podemos, and Mélenchon are inspiring figures, but we need to understand what is specific about the political regime in our country and respond in a specific way. We need to try to expand the range of the possible for left politics at the moment. Even if it isn't so inspiring and very weak, we still have to try. The kind of system that exists in Ukraine can't last forever. There are many contradictions, divisions, and cleavages exacerbated by the ruling groups, and all of these will lead to a situation at some point where weaker groups might become politically relevant and important again.

LB: Before we wrap up I wanted to ask you about the third major candidate, Volodymyr Zelensky . If I understand correctly, he stars in a TV show about a politician and has now become the politician he plays on TV. Is that correct – and is he popular? Does he have a chance at winning or is this a stunt?

VI: Actually, he's currently the most popular politician in the country. According to polls he has significantly more support than both Poroshenko and Tymoshenko, and could very possibly become the president.

There are basically three groups of people voting for him: firstly, fans of his TV show, a very popular comedy about Ukrainian politics. Another large group are just so disappointed and tired of these oligarchs that they will vote for any fresh face.

LB: So he's similar to Donald Trump in some ways?

VI: In some ways, but what's different from Trump is the third group of his supporters, namely people who are voting for him because he is perceived as less nationalist than the other candidates. Zelensky himself is Russian-speaking, he's from the central Ukrainian city of Kryvyi Rih, and has attracted lots of support from Russian-speaking citizens.

That makes Zelensky different from Trump – he's actually trying to campaign on unifying themes, not divisive ones. He opposes Poroshenko's attempts to push the Ukrainian language on Russian speakers, for example.

Another thing that makes him different from Trump or Beppe Grillo is that he has no populist movement behind him, or any movement at all for that matter. All he has is his TV show, around which he is now trying to build a political party from scratch. This is different from other populist figures – there was no mass mobilization preceding him. Trump, for example, is obviously somehow a result of the Tea Party movement, while Grillo represents the Five Stars Movement (in Italy).

Another difference is his connection to Igor Kolomoisky, one of Ukraine's richest oligarchs now in opposition to Poroshenko who founded the country's largest bank, Privat Bank, and still owns a controlling share of the national airline. Zelensky's show is broadcast on one of Kolomoisky's eight TV stations, and one of his lawyers is a key architect of Zelensky's party, Sluha Narodu , which translates to "Servant of the People" (also the name of his show). Right now it's not possible to say how independent Zelensky is. I wouldn't call him a puppet, but there are definitely connections to the ruling class.

All of this means that Zelensky will be very weak if he wins, and not only because he's inexperienced. For the first half year he won't have much support in parliament. He has no loyal political party behind him. He will surely get some opportunists to defect from other parties, but hardly a majority. I don't know what he could do in that situation. After the parliamentary elections he might face a more favourable constellation, but it will also depend on how he does in the first months.

It's impossible to say how he would perform as president. He has zero political experience. I fear that he may understand politics even less than Donald Trump. He is a blank page on which anything can be written.

LB: So he reflects the vacuum in civil society more generally?

VI: Exactly. He is a glaring symptom of what's going on in Ukrainian society. People hate the oligarchs, they hate the faces they've seen for decades. Revolutions come and go, elections come and go, but life just gets worse and worse. People don't want another five years of Tymoshenko or Poroshenko and are happy to vote for any recognizable fresh face who isn't implicated in serious corruption. People are voting less out of hope than out of anger. Better to vote for an incompetent comedian than the same old corrupt experts.

At the same time, civil society is so weak that it couldn't put up any competing figure. Only a TV star was able to do that, nobody from the pro-Western, liberal NGOs came even close. None of those figures poll even one per cent. This says a lot about Ukrainian "civil society": it's totally incapable of producing competent, popular leaders.

If he is elected, it will be strong proof that the people are sick of the old style of politics, that they aren't being manipulated by Poroshenko's nationalism and want something better. Nevertheless, I am very sceptical that Zelensky will be able to change anything. Real change in Ukraine will be a much longer process, and will require the building of a different kind of political opposition that we haven't seen in this country for a very long time. •

This article first published on the Rosalux.de website.

[Apr 24, 2019] Is Zelensky up to the president's job Inside Story

President without his own party is lame duck President; a puppet. If it is true that Zelenski is really man of Soros and was elected on Soros money that's a very bad omen. That's probably the worst possible scenario.
At the same time in Ukraine allegiance to a party is weak and some deputies might switch sides forming kind of "Zelenski block" similar to "Block of Petr Poroshenko" so he can create some sudo-party. Also he cancel the reelection of the Parliament. But he will need to deal with Yulia Timoshenko who is the leader of Batkivshchina party and that will not be easy.
Might well be variation of the theme of Saakashvili. Dmitry Babish said that Zelenski is a neoliberal who is surrounded by Soros people and several foreign born ministers that Poroshenko fired. His connection to the notorious oligarch Kolomoyski is another very bad sign.
Notable quotes:
"... hope for Ukraine but I did not know that in Zelensky team there are Soros people according to the specialist in Moscow. ..."
"... I see Ukraine pulled a Trump. Good luck with that. What could possibly go wrong? ..."
Apr 22, 2019 | www.youtube.com

louis ecorchevolle

hope for Ukraine but I did not know that in Zelensky team there are Soros people according to the specialist in Moscow. Anyhow this analysis was very interesting

CHILLEDVIBE29 , 1 day ago

I am studying in Ukraine and I haven't done much background on this man but his up against some uncharted waters

Abraham Tsfaye , 1 day ago

Guatemala also elected a comedian in 2014. It didn't work out for them. Time will tell if is intention is real or he is another fake.

Alex Bort , 1 day ago

Elect a clown - expect circus

CHILLEDVIBE29 , 1 day ago

I am studying in Ukraine and I haven't done much background on this man but his up against some uncharted waters

Abraham Tsfaye , 1 day ago

Guatemala also elected a comedian in 2014. It didn't work out for them. Time will tell if is intention is real or he is another fake.

Alex Bort , 1 day ago

Elect a clown - expect circus

grimm reaper , 11 hours ago

AJ what's your report card on Poroshenko, the chocolate king? I recall Poroshenko ordered his troops to attack and bomb east Ukraine, Ukraine's own territory. I doubt the Russian speaking Ukrainians have a tattoo on their forehead identified them as such. a comic won't do any worse than a US selected oligarch.

travellingbirder , 3 hours ago

USA elected Trump as president, a man with no political experience. In the UK we elect politicians and end up with jokers. Good luck Ukraine I really hope it works for you.

Quy Le , 1 day ago (edited)

I see Ukraine pulled a Trump. Good luck with that. What could possibly go wrong?

[Apr 22, 2019] Poroshenko s attempt to appeal to nationalism has failed by Cnaan Liphshiz

Notable quotes:
"... Poroshenko's government greatly encouraged glorification of those troops and leaders as fighters for Ukrainian freedom who it insisted sided with Germany only in order to fight against the Russian-controlled Soviet Union. ..."
"... Meanwhile, in the western city of Lviv, nationalists became emboldened enough to celebrate with city authorities' permission the anniversary of the 14th Galician division of the Waffen SS. The anniversary events featured men parading in Nazi SS uniforms on the street. ..."
"... On this subject, Zelensky has said only that he personally does not favor the veneration of people like Bandera, whom he described as "a hero to some Ukrainians." It was a markedly reserved formulation compared to the unreserved endorsement of figures like Bandera by officials under Poroshenko. ..."
"... In some far-right circles, Zelensky's work in a television stationed owned by the Jewish billionaire Igor Kolomoisky was proof of his belonging to a "Jewish cabal." But it made Zelensky popular with other nationalists who appreciated Kolomoisky's reputation as a fiery patriot. ..."
"... Not denying his Jewish ancestry, Zelensky declined to explore it at length in the interview, Levy wrote. On this subject, he replied with typical self-deprecating humor, telling Levy: "The fact that I am Jewish barely makes 20 in my long list of faults." ..."
"... This popularity has allowed Zelensky to both win on an unusually vague platform and distinguish himself from his professional politician rivals, with their proclivity to hyperbole and nationalist slogans. ..."
"... For example, when a reporter asked him how he would deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Zelensky reverted to his comic roots, saying "I would speak to him at eye level." It was a reference to him and Putin being at least three inches shorter than Poroshenko, a 6-footer. ..."
"... "We will need to wait and see what kind of president Zelensky turns out to be," said Dolinsky, who was an outspoken critic of some policies of the Poroshenko administration. "What is clear is that Poroshenko's attempt to appeal to nationalism has failed. Ukrainians said they wanted change. And I am feeling optimistic." ..."
Apr 22, 2019 | www.timesofisrael.com
Ukrainian comedian and presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky reacts after the announcement of the first exit poll results in the second round of Ukraine's presidential election at his campaign headquarters in Kiev on April 21, 2019. (Photo by Sergei GAPON / AFP) JTA -- Following the victory of Volodymyr Zelensky in Ukraine's presidential elections, the country will become the only one in the world besides Israel whose president and prime minister are both Jewish.

When Zelensky is sworn in as president, his prime minister -- at least for a while and possibly until the parliamentary elections scheduled to take place sometime later this year -- will be Volodymyr Groysman, a Jewish politician who was the mayor of the city of Vinnytsia.

To some of incumbent Petro Poroshenko's critics, the landslide success of the vague campaign by the politically inexperienced Zelensky, a comedian, was not surprising in light of widespread resentment over the persistence of corruption under Poroshenko, who was elected in 2014 on a platform that vowed remedial action on exactly that front.

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More unusual to some, however, was how Zelensky's appears to have won the elections so decisively in spite of how his Jewish ancestry – his mother, Rima, is Jewish and he has jokingly referred to this during the campaign -- is well known in Ukraine.

After all, Russia and other critics claim Ukrainian society has a serious anti-Semitism problem and legacy.

"Imagine, a pure-blooded Jew with the appearance of a Sholom Aleichem protagonist wins by a landslide in a country where the glorification of Nazi criminals is enacted into law," wrote Avigdor Eskin, a Russian-Israeli columnist, in an analysis published earlier this month by the Regnum news agency.

Eskin in column on Zelensky downplayed allegations of widespread anti-Semitism in Ukraine, attributing much of the attention to the problem in media and beyond to propaganda by Russia, which is involved in an armed conflict over territory with Ukraine. But Eskin's statement about Ukrainian laws glorifying Nazi criminals is not inaccurate, and Russia is not alone in criticizing Ukraine over this and other issues connected to anti-Semitism.

Last year, Israel's government singled out Ukraine as a regional trouble spot in the Israeli government's annual report on anti-Semitism.

"A striking exception in the trend of decrease in anti-Semitic incidents in Eastern Europe was Ukraine, where the number of recorded anti-Semitic attacks was doubled from last year and surpassed the tally for all the incidents reported throughout the entire region combined," the report said. The authors of the report counted more than 130 reported anti-Semitic incidents in Ukraine in 2017, they said.

Also last year, more than 50 US Congress members condemned Ukrainian legislation that they said "glorifies Nazi collaborators" and therefore goes even further than Poland's controversial laws limiting what can be said about local complicity during the Holocaust.

A letter signed by the US lawmakers stated, "It's particularly troubling that much of the Nazi glorification in Ukraine is government-supported." It noted ceremonies, gestures and legislation venerating leaders of the UPA and OUN militias, who fought alongside Nazi Germany during World War II and whose troops participated in atrocities against Jews and other victims.

Poroshenko's government greatly encouraged glorification of those troops and leaders as fighters for Ukrainian freedom who it insisted sided with Germany only in order to fight against the Russian-controlled Soviet Union.

Several cities across Ukraine named streets for the Nazi-collaborator Stepan Bandera, who prior to Poroshenko's time in office was openly glorified only in the country's west.

Meanwhile, in the western city of Lviv, nationalists became emboldened enough to celebrate with city authorities' permission the anniversary of the 14th Galician division of the Waffen SS. The anniversary events featured men parading in Nazi SS uniforms on the street.

Such sights would have been unthinkable under Viktor Yanukovych, the corrupt president who was deposed in a 2013 revolution that ended with Poroshenko's election. Careful to alienate neither ethnic Russians in Ukraine nor its powerful neighbor to the east, Yanukovych was less tolerant of this nationalist phenomenon.

On this subject, Zelensky has said only that he personally does not favor the veneration of people like Bandera, whom he described as "a hero to some Ukrainians." It was a markedly reserved formulation compared to the unreserved endorsement of figures like Bandera by officials under Poroshenko.

The presidential campaign itself has featured some anti-Semitism. In some far-right circles, Zelensky's work in a television stationed owned by the Jewish billionaire Igor Kolomoisky was proof of his belonging to a "Jewish cabal." But it made Zelensky popular with other nationalists who appreciated Kolomoisky's reputation as a fiery patriot.

Alexander Paliy, an influential political analyst supporting Poroshenko, last month stirred controversy when he wrote on Facebook that, despite his "respect" for Jews and some Russians, "The president of Ukraine should be Ukrainian and Christian, like the absolute majority of Ukrainians."

Such rhetoric is shocking to many of Ukraine's 300,000-odd Jews, whose ancestors suffered murderous anti-Semitism in Ukraine for centuries before, during and decades after the Holocaust.

The French-Jewish philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy also referenced Ukrainian Jew's bloody history in an interview with Zelensky, the 41-year-old son of scientists who lived near major Soviet army bases in Ukraine, that he published earlier this month in the Le Point weekly.

"His Judaism. It's extraordinary that the possible future president of the country of the Shoah by Bullets and Babi Yar is a self-affirmed Jew from a family of survivors from Kryvy Rih near Dnipro – the land of pogrom if ever there was one," Levy wrote. "This postmodern kid, is he new proof that the virus of anti-Semitism has been contained" after the revolution, Levy added.

Not denying his Jewish ancestry, Zelensky declined to explore it at length in the interview, Levy wrote. On this subject, he replied with typical self-deprecating humor, telling Levy: "The fact that I am Jewish barely makes 20 in my long list of faults."

Zelensky, whose mother, Rima, is Jewish, has ingratiated himself with the Ukrainian public with such jokes as the star of "Servant of the People" – a primetime television show where he portrays a teacher thrust by an unlikely chain of events to become Ukraine's president. He announced his candidacy in January, becoming an instant favorite.

This popularity has allowed Zelensky to both win on an unusually vague platform and distinguish himself from his professional politician rivals, with their proclivity to hyperbole and nationalist slogans.

For example, when a reporter asked him how he would deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Zelensky reverted to his comic roots, saying "I would speak to him at eye level." It was a reference to him and Putin being at least three inches shorter than Poroshenko, a 6-footer.

Zelensky opaqueness means a high level of uncertainty, Dolinsky, the Jewish community leader, said.

"We will need to wait and see what kind of president Zelensky turns out to be," said Dolinsky, who was an outspoken critic of some policies of the Poroshenko administration. "What is clear is that Poroshenko's attempt to appeal to nationalism has failed. Ukrainians said they wanted change. And I am feeling optimistic."

[Apr 22, 2019] "Ukrainization uber alles" is not supported by population. That's why Poroshenko lost

It is clear that like in Trump vs Hillary situation many voted not for Zelensky but against Poroshenko. Coul be that the same screwed political consultants who ensured Trump victory work in Ukraine.
Zelensky is that same candidate as Obama, Trump and Macron: he has zero political history. So you can project into him the expectation of electorate and that trick works. During the campaign, concerns were raised over his links to the oligarch Ihor Kolomoyskyi (he proposed a tax amnesty and a 5% flat tax for big business ).
From Wikipedia: In an interview in December 2018, Zelensky stated that as President he would try to end the ongoing War in Donbass by negotiating with Russia . [49] As he considered the leaders of the Donetsk People's Republic and the Luhansk People's Republic (DPR and LPR) to be Russia's "puppets", it would "make no sense to speak with them". [49] He did not rule out holding a referendum on the issue. [50] [49] In an interview published three days before the 2019 presidential election (on 21 April) Zelensky stated that he was against granting the Donbass region "special status". [51] In the interview he also said that if he were elected President he would not sign a law on amnesty for the militants of the DPR and LPR. [51]
Edited Google translation.
Using phase form cult novel The Golden Calf by Ilya Ilf and Evgeny Petrov "Children of lieutenant Schmidt" Poroshenko can be called a son of undersecretary Nuland. He has no space for maneuver, space for negotiation as confrontation with Russia is the geopolitical goal of neocon establishment which stands behind Victoria Nuland. That's probably why he lost.
Apr 22, 2019 | ukraina.ru

Poroshenko's triad -- "faith, army, language" -- was not born from scratch. Poroshenko emphasized Ukrainization of all aspects of the country's life. In culture, history, even the economics. Especially in the economics. All these decisions, orders and sanctions were aimed at cutting economic ties with Russia under very simple ideological basis -- "Ukrainization uber alles"

Of course, this was a gesture of despair of the man who came to power via "Washington Obcom" at a time when Ukraine already lost a part of its territory -- the Crimea and was on the verge of even greater loss -- Donbass, and maybe the entire South-East.

Poroshenko in this situation enforced blatant confrontation with Russia (instead of negotiations and search of compromises) as the tool to unite the nation against common enemy. Having accepted the obvious situation in which he can do nothing to return the lost territories (and it would be unprofitable for him politically), he pushed the confrontation as if there is no tomorrow, please his US sponsors. Which resulted is sliding of the standard of living as lost markets at the East were not compensated by new market at the West. He unleashed personal war with Russia hoping that it will help to survive him politically and instead it backfired.

In other words Poroshenko assumed that he can unite Ukranina peole of the base of the his fight with Russia. A common enemy always unites rulers and people.

However, during the presidential elections, which were held just five years after the triumph of nationalist ideology on EuroMaydan, it turned out that this the majority of the population does not share this ideology with Pyotr Alekseevich. And that the sliding standard of living, rampant inflation and personal corruption of EuroMaydan junta has a greater weight.

The majority, apparently, doesn't want exclusivity of the Ukrainian nation... They want European standard of living.

[Apr 22, 2019] Comedian Zelenski wipes floor with Porkie.

Apr 22, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Hoarsewhisperer , Apr 21, 2019 2:31:54 PM | link

Ukraine election exit poll:
Comedian Zelenski wipes floor with Porkie.
Z = 75%: P = 23%

[Apr 21, 2019] Russia And Ukraine Can Finally Agree on Something Friendly Relations With Israel by Adam Garrie

Apr 21, 2019 | eurasiafuture.com

While the world mourns the victims of today's terrorist atrocities in Sri Lanka, Ukraine has conducted its first election since 2014 -- the year in which the fragmented post-Soviet republic changed forever. This year, the debates were not a contest between those seeking to reverse the tide of 2014 versus those committed to an even more radically pro-western approach, but instead the question uniformly revolved around how a country that before 2014 was ethnically and religious fragmented, poor, corrupt and seemingly ungovernable has become even worse by all objective measurements.

Because of the popular discontent in the country due to the worsening of already abysmal economic conditions, it was always going to be difficult for outgoing President Petro Poroshenko to play the jingoistic anti-Russian/anti-Donbass card when most Ukrainian citizens are becoming more worried about the price of gas and the price of food than they are worried about playing a game of political football started by Barack Obama.

As such, the entire political class that took charge after 2014 (ironically many such people were connected to the old regime they claimed to hate) are roundly reviled throughout Ukraine. Against this background, comedian Volodymyr Zelensky decided to run for president and early indications are that he has won the election in a landslide.

Zelensky's campaign was one based on a broadly anti-corruption platform that was as pro-western and as anti-Russian as that of his closest rivals. The difference was that for the first time in its history, Ukraine had a political figure with a human face rather than that of a cold, calculating oligarch aspiring to be an autocrat. Outside of Ukraine and Russia, Zelensky's candidacy has received the most attention in Israel.

Israeli media have become excited by the fact that Ukraine will now have a Jewish head of state and one whose chief backers are particularly close to Tel Aviv. While Israel has often condemned the rise in genuine antisemitism throughout much of Ukraine, Tel Aviv has nevertheless increased its economic relations with Kiev since 2014. As such, it can be assured that under Zelensky, relations between Tel Aviv and Kiev will continue to grow.

This incidentally comes at a time when Russia and Israel are becoming increasingly close allies as was recently detailed in a Eurasia Future piece by Andrew Korybko . Whilst Moscow and Kiev cannot agree on seemingly anything at this point in history, they can agree on one thing: Israel is considered a friendly nation and a valued partner.

Just because Vladimir Putin is a friend of Israel and something of a philosemitie, it does not automatically mean that he will develop a warm relationship with a Ukrainian leader who happens to be Jewish and who happens to be friendly with prominent Israeli businessmen. However, because the Kremlin has long sought to reach some sort of conclusion to the stand off with Ukraine (against the wishes of many Russian patriots and the two main opposition parties), a fresh face in Kiev who has ties to Israelis may well be a small step towards bridging the gap between his own government and Moscow.

None of this will likely play out before the cameras because in much of Ukraine it is considered near treasonous to talk of anything resembling a detente with Moscow. Likewise, at a time when Vladimir Putin's popularity is dipping due to an unpopular proposed pension reform and internal economic/infrastructural issues, it would be viewed by at least some Russian patriots as a sell out to effectively compromise with a Kiev regime that has attempted to commit ethnic cleansing against the people of Donbass.

That being said, behind the scenes things will likely be very different, just as they were after 2015 when Russia and Turkey rapidly mended ties out of the view of the public, before later becoming openly close partners as they are today.

As a political novice in a country whose "experienced politicians" are self-evidently nothing to learn by, Zelensky may well seek advice from Israeli experts, many of whom are becoming increasingly close to Putin's Russia. This could represent the beginning of a slowly turning tide for both Moscow and Kiev.

[Apr 21, 2019] Whenever someone inconveniences the neoliberal oligarchy, the entire neoliberal MSM mafia tells us 24 x7 how evil and disgusting that person is. It's true of the leader of every nation which rejects neoliberal globalization as well as for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange

Highly recommended!
Apr 21, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Have you ever noticed how whenever someone inconveniences the dominant western power structure, the entire political/media class rapidly becomes very, very interested in letting us know how evil and disgusting that person is? It's true of the leader of every nation which refuses to allow itself to be absorbed into the blob of the US-centralized power alliance, it's true of anti-establishment political candidates, and it's true of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Corrupt and unaccountable power uses its political and media influence to smear Assange because, as far as the interests of corrupt and unaccountable power are concerned, killing his reputation is as good as killing him. If everyone can be paced into viewing him with hatred and revulsion, they'll be far less likely to take WikiLeaks publications seriously, and they'll be far more likely to consent to Assange's imprisonment, thereby establishing a precedent for the future prosecution of leak-publishing journalists around the world. Someone can be speaking 100 percent truth to you, but if you're suspicious of him you won't believe anything he's saying. If they can manufacture that suspicion with total or near-total credence, then as far as our rulers are concerned it's as good as putting a bullet in his head.

Those of us who value truth and light need to fight this smear campaign in order to keep our fellow man from signing off on a major leap in the direction of Orwellian dystopia, and a big part of that means being able to argue against those smears and disinformation wherever they appear. Unfortunately I haven't been able to find any kind of centralized source of information which comprehensively debunks all the smears in a thorough and engaging way, so with the help of hundreds of tips from my readers and social media followers I'm going to attempt to make one here. What follows is my attempt at creating a tool kit people can use to fight against Assange smears wherever they encounter them, by refuting the disinformation with truth and solid argumentation.

This article is an ongoing project which will be updated regularly where it appears on Medium and caitlinjohnstone.com as new information comes in and new smears spring up in need of refutation.

[Apr 18, 2019] Russia banning oil, petroleum product, coal exports to Ukraine Medvedev

Poroshenko "Hail Mary" move?
Notable quotes:
"... The document "determines a list of those goods that it will be possible to export to Ukraine only on the basis of separate decisions from June 1." "This category includes fuel and energy products, including coal as well as the oil and petroleum products," he said. ..."
Apr 18, 2019 | interfax.com.ua

Russia is banning exports of crude oil, petroleum products and coal to Ukraine.

"A few days ago the Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers took the latest unfriendly step with respect to our country and expanded the list of Russian goods which cannot be imported to Ukrainian territory. In these conditions we are forced to protect our interests and take response measures," Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said at a meeting of the Russian cabinet.

Medvedev said he had signed a resolution "banning the export of Russian crude oil and petroleum products to Ukraine."

The document "determines a list of those goods that it will be possible to export to Ukraine only on the basis of separate decisions from June 1." "This category includes fuel and energy products, including coal as well as the oil and petroleum products," he said.

[Apr 18, 2019] OSCE observers released their preliminary report on the results of the first round of the presidential election

Apr 18, 2019 | thesaker.is

JJ on April 17, 2019 , · at 1:53 pm EST/EDT

https://rusemb.org.uk/fnapr/6790

Not sure if extensive Lavrov interview earlier in April was reported on saker ..extract

"Question: Have you seen any grounds for optimism in the results of the first round of the presidential election in Ukraine?

Sergey Lavrov: To be honest, I haven't seen any grounds for either optimism or pessimism. What's the point of guesswork? This is a process that should take place and will be completed. I do not doubt this or that the West will recognise this election.

OSCE observers released their preliminary report on the results of the first round of the presidential election, which abounds in examples of flagrant violations: corruption, bribery, pressure on voters and many other things. However, all this is described in a neutral tone. I think if they wrote about us, they would present these facts emotionally. Now they are doing it in an understated way and conclude that this did not affect the legitimacy of the election. Neither was it affected by the flagrant violation of OSCE rules when our observers were kicked out and over three million Ukrainians working and living in Russia were deprived of the right to vote. These are facts of life in Ukraine.

I think that the results of the election and the way it was organised came as no surprise to those who have been following domestic developments in Ukraine and its external ties. They are already calling each other puppets It's probably interesting to watch from the side but I don't think that Ukrainian citizens are happy about this kind of democracy.

Question: Are the prospects of Russia-Ukraine cooperation still vague?

Sergey Lavrov: We are open to dialogue if the aim is not chatting and looking for excuses to do nothing but rather the practical implementation of the Minsk agreements. I have no doubt that Petr Poroshenko does not want to do this and won't do this. When Viktor Medvedchuk just suggested seriously discussing what autonomous rights may be granted to Donbass, he was called a traitor. Poroshenko said this will never happen although he himself signed a document on the special status of Donbass, which is described with sufficient detail in the Minsk agreements.

These provisions on what rights Donbass should have were formulated by German Chancellor Angela Merkel personally, among others, but her ward has got out of hand. This is a fact. On the one hand, he doesn't listen to Germany or France because he has American "patrons". On the other hand, they find it embarrassing to pressure him in public because by doing so they will admit that what they call their "mediation" has failed.

However, there is no other document except for the Minsk agreements. They can certainly be supplemented. For instance, it is possible to provide OSCE observers with UN armed guards, as we suggest in response to the apprehensions of Ukrainians about their safety. But the core of these agreements must remain unchanged. The main point is that all issues are settled directly between Kiev, Donetsk and Lugansk .."

[Apr 18, 2019] The USA Ukrainian endgame is to carve another Poland from the Russian population, as a means to weaken the Russian State

Apr 18, 2019 | thesaker.is

Latinoamericano on April 17, 2019 , · at 12:20 pm EST/EDT

The Toltec sages used to say: "To really know something means that it must also entail the knowledge of what course of action to take. And once you know what to do, you actually do it". So they firmly stated that the only worthy knowledge is a functional one. Normally, the trascendental matters were integrally consulted with the "Eagle" (i.e. the Entity out there with limitless consciousness, which sounds pretty much like "God") through a link that in the west is ignorantly dismissed as "intuition". This to remark that the big decisions must not rely entirely on the rational part, because it is too prone to make mistakes.
We all know who the adversary is: it's not the AZE (AngloZionist Empire) per se, it's who rule the Empire. And what they are doing in Ukraine is pretty clear:

* The endgame is to carve another Poland from the Russian population, as a means to weaken the Russian State. The steps are obvious and unfortunately, maybe definitive: zioimposed religious schism, forceful and exclusive use of "Ukrainian" from 2020 on, denial to belong to other country different from "Ukraine" (a patchwork assembled through land thefts). Fortunately Russia recovered Crimea, and the mining/industrial regions are disputed, but the Khazarians control 2 critical assets: the other coastal oblasts and the chernozem soils.

* Stating that Russia cannot absorb Novorossiya is bullsh¡t. Germany, a smaller economy with no sovereign government could absorb the RDA. If Russia doesn't decide, the situation will decide by itself. Russia is already receiving a lot of displaced Russians, plus tons of Russians in Ukraine who became the source of cheap labor for Russian companies. And what about the costs of humanitarian assistance and military support to Russians under the Ukraine dictatorship? Let's say it takes 30 years to revert the decay, so what? Russia has been around longer and has had successful comebacks under way more destruction.

* The Donbass people already decided twice, by clear majority of the popular vote, to become part of the Russian Federation. The right thing to do is simply accepting them. Not doing so sends the signal that no matter what the other southwestern Oblasts do, they will not be accepted either. Russia should openly support the Russians in the southeast of Ukraine who want to secede and reintegrate with the Russian Federation.

For example, financing a reunification party, granting contracts and jobs to the Russian allies there, logistically supporting a secession movement, even militarily, because the Khazarians will not let go without bloodshed.

[Apr 18, 2019] The Saker interviews Dmitry Orlov

Notable quotes:
"... Thus, there is an objective reason to prefer Zelensky over Poroshenko, which is that Poroshenko is a major thief while Zelensky isn't one yet, but it must be understood that this difference will begin to equalize the moment after Zelensky's inauguration. In fact, the elites in Kiev are currently all aquiver over their ingenious plan to sell off all of Ukraine's land to foreign investors (no doubt pocketing a hefty "fee"). ..."
"... The platforms of all the 30+ candidates were identical, but this makes no difference in a country that has surrendered its sovereignty. In terms of foreign relations and strategic considerations, the Ukraine is run from the US embassy in Kiev. ..."
"... n terms of its internal functioning, the main prerogative of everyone in power, the president included, is thievery. Their idea is to get their cut and flee the country before the whole thing blows up. ..."
"... Another option would be for Poroshenko to cheat his way past the second round (in an even more heavy-handed manner, since this time he is behind by over 30%), in which case Zelensky could theoretically contest the result in court and win. This would invalidate the entire election and leave Poroshenko in charge until the next one. Lather, rinse, repeat. Are you excited yet? ..."
"... None of this matters, because we don't know which of the two is the US State Department's pick. Depending on which one it is, and regardless of the results of any elections or lawsuits, a giant foot will come out of the sky and stomp on the head of the other one. ..."
Apr 18, 2019 | thesaker.is

... ... ...

­ The Saker: What is your take on the first round of Presidential elections in the Ukraine?

Dmitry Orlov: The first round of the elections was an outright fraud. The object of the exercise was to somehow allow president Poroshenko to make it into the second round. This was done by falsifying as many votes as was necessary. In a significant number of precincts the turnout was exactly 100% instead of the usual 60% or so and counted votes from people who had moved, died or emigrated. All of these fake votes went to Poroshenko, allowing him to slither through to the second round.

Now the fight is between Poroshenko and a comedian named Vladimir Zelensky. The only difference between Poroshenko and Zelensky, or any of the other 30+ people who appeared on the ballot, is that Poroshenko has already stolen his billions while his contestants have not had a chance to do so yet, the only reason to run for president, or any elected office, in the Ukraine, being to put oneself in a position to do some major thieving.

Thus, there is an objective reason to prefer Zelensky over Poroshenko, which is that Poroshenko is a major thief while Zelensky isn't one yet, but it must be understood that this difference will begin to equalize the moment after Zelensky's inauguration. In fact, the elites in Kiev are currently all aquiver over their ingenious plan to sell off all of Ukraine's land to foreign investors (no doubt pocketing a hefty "fee").

The platforms of all the 30+ candidates were identical, but this makes no difference in a country that has surrendered its sovereignty. In terms of foreign relations and strategic considerations, the Ukraine is run from the US embassy in Kiev. I

n terms of its internal functioning, the main prerogative of everyone in power, the president included, is thievery. Their idea is to get their cut and flee the country before the whole thing blows up.

It remains to be seen whether the second round of elections will also be an outright fraud and what happens as a result. There are many alternatives, but none of them resemble any sort of exercise in democracy. To be sure, what is meant by "democracy" in this case is simply the ability to execute orders issued from Washington; inability to do so would make Ukraine an "authoritarian regime" or a "dictatorship" and subject to "regime change." But short of that, nothing matters.

The machinations of Ukraine's "democrats" are about as interesting to me as the sex lives of sewer rats, but for the sake of completeness, let me flowchart it out for you. Poroshenko got into second round by outright fraud, because the loss of this election would, within the Ukrainian political food chain, instantly convert him from predator to prey. However, he was none too subtle about it, there is ample proof of his cheating, and the contender he squeezed out -- Yulia Timoshenko -- could theoretically contest the result in court and win. This would invalidate the entire election and leave Poroshenko in charge until the next one. Lather, rinse, repeat.

Another option would be for Poroshenko to cheat his way past the second round (in an even more heavy-handed manner, since this time he is behind by over 30%), in which case Zelensky could theoretically contest the result in court and win. This would invalidate the entire election and leave Poroshenko in charge until the next one. Lather, rinse, repeat. Are you excited yet?

None of this matters, because we don't know which of the two is the US State Department's pick. Depending on which one it is, and regardless of the results of any elections or lawsuits, a giant foot will come out of the sky and stomp on the head of the other one.

Of course, it will all be made to look highly democratic for the sake of appearances. The leadership of the EU will oblige with some golf claps while choking back vomit and the world will move on.

[Apr 18, 2019] The Ukrainian State Investigation Bureau launched a criminal case on "the intentional surrender" of Crimea against Verkhovna Rada Speaker Andrei Paruby, Secretary of the Ukrainian Council of National Security and Defense Alexander Turchinov, former Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk and others

If Poroshenko loses all those guys probably need to use their green cards ASAP ;-)
Apr 18, 2019 | thesaker.is

JJ on April 17, 2019 , · at 7:26 am EST/EDT

KIEV, April 17. /TASS/. The Ukrainian State Investigation Bureau launched a criminal case on "the intentional surrender" of Crimea against Verkhovna Rada Speaker Andrei Paruby, Secretary of the Ukrainian Council of National Security and Defense Alexander Turchinov, former Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk and others, the Ukrainian law union Aver Lex told TASS on Wednesday.

READ ALSO

Court finds Yanukovich not guilty of 'losing Crimea' -- attorney
"The State Investigation Bureau opened a criminal case on the intentional surrender of Crimea, violent upheaval, treason and the organization of mass murders on the 'maidan' in 2014 by Ukraine's top officials, in particular by Arseny Yatsenyuk, Alexander Turchinov, Andrei Paruby, [former head of Ukraine's Security Service] Valentin Nalivaichenko, [Verkhovna Rada member] Sergei Pashinsky, [Permanent Representative to the UN] Yuri Sergeyev, [Kiev Mayor] Vitaly Klichko, [head of the Freedom nationalist party] Oleg Tyagnibok, [former Acting Defense Minister] Igor Tenyukh, [Prosecutor General] Yuri Lutsenko, [Defense Minister] Stepan Poltorak and others," Aver Lex said.

More:
http://tass.com/world/1054070

Wow .determined to throw out the old crowd?????????

Mulga Mumblebrain on April 17, 2019 , · at 6:52 pm EST/EDT
It gets messy when rats turn on each other-but is entertaining when they are the 'human' sub-species.

[Apr 16, 2019] The incompetent, the corrupt, the treacherous -- not just walking free, but with reputations intact, fat bank balances, and flourishing careers. Now they re angling for war with Iran.

Highly recommended!
Apr 15, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Return of the Just April 14, 2019 at 10:46 am

You're right. I see people like Robert Kagan's opinions being respectfully asked on foreign affairs, John Bolton and Elliott Abrams being hired to direct our foreign policy.

The incompetent, the corrupt, the treacherous -- not just walking free, but with reputations intact, fat bank balances, and flourishing careers. Now they're angling for war with Iran.

It's preposterous and sickening. And it can't be allowed to stand, so you can't just stand off and say you're "wrecked". Keep fighting, as you're doing. I will fight it until I can't fight anymore.

Ken Zaretzke , says: April 14, 2019 at 3:38 pm
Fact-bedeviled JohnT: “McCain was a problem for this nation? Sweet Jesus! There quite simply is no rational adult on the planet who buys that nonsense.”

McCain had close ties to the military-industrial complex. He was a backer of post-Cold War NATO. He was a neoconservative darling. He never heard of a dictator that he didn’t want to depose with boots on the ground, with the possible exception of various Saudi dictators (the oil-weaponry-torture nexus). He promoted pseudo-accountability of government in campaign finance but blocked accountability for the Pentagon and State Department when he co-chaired the United States Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs with John Kerry.

And, perhaps partly because of the head trauma and/or emotional wounds he suffered at the hands of Chinese-backed Commies, it’s plausible to think he was regarded by the willy-nilly plotters of the deep state as a manipulable, and thus useful, conduit of domestic subversion via the bogus Steele dossier.

Unfortunately, the episode that most defines McCain’s life is the very last one–his being a pawn of M-16 in the the deep state’s years-long attempt to derail the presidency of Donald Trump.

Joe Dokes , says: April 14, 2019 at 11:55 pm
Measuring success means determining goals. The goals of most wars is to enrich the people in charge. So, by this metric, the war was a success. The rest of it is just props and propaganda.
Andrew Stergiou , says: April 15, 2019 at 5:11 am
“Pyrrhic Victory” look it up the Roman Empire Won but lost if the US is invaded and the government does not defend it I would like to start my own defense: But the knee jerk politics that stirs America’s cannon fodder citizens is a painful reminder of a history of jingoist lies where at times some left and right agree at least for a short moment before the rich and powerful push their weight to have their way.

If All politics is relative Right wingers are the the left of what? Nuclear destruction? or Slavery?

Peter Smith , says: April 15, 2019 at 5:13 am
My goodness! I am also a veteran, but of the Vietnam war, and my father was a career officer from 1939-1961 as a paratrooper first, and later as an intelligence officer. He argued vigorously against our Vietnam involvement, and was cashiered for his intellectual honesty. A combat veteran’s views are meaningless when the political winds are blowing.

Simply put, we have killed thousands of our kids in service of the colonial empires left to us by the British and the French after WWII. More practice at incompetent strategies and tactics does not make us more competent–it merely extends the blunders and pain; viz the French for two CENTURIES against the Britsh during the battles over Normandy while the Planagenet kings worked to hold their viking-won inheritance.

At least then, kings risked their own lives. Generals fight because the LIKE it…a lot. Prior failures are only practice to the, regardless of the cost in lives of the kids we tried to raise well, and who were slaughtered for no gain.

We don’t need the empire, and we certainly shouldn’t fight for the corrupt businessmen who have profited from the never-ending conflicts. Let’s spend those trillions at home, so long as we also police our government to keep both Democrat and Republican politicians from feathering their own nests. Term limits and prosecutions will help us, but only if we are vigilant. Wars distract our attention while corruption is rampant at home.

Fayez Abedaziz , says: April 12, 2019 at 12:25 am
Thanks, I appreciate this article.
I’ll make two points, my own opinion:
it’s the same story as Vietnam, the bull about how the politicians or anti-war demonstrators tied the military ‘hand,’ blah, blah.
Nonsense. Invading a nation and slaughtering people in their towns, houses…gee…what’s wrong with that, eh?
The average American has a primitive mind when it comes to such matters.
Second point I have, is that both Bushes, Clinton, Obama, Hillary and Trump should be dragged to a world court, given a fair trial and locked up for life with hard labor… oh, and Cheney too,for all those families, in half a dozen nations, especially the children overseas that suffered/died from these creeps.
And, the families of dead or maimed American troops should be apologized to and compensation paid by several million dollars to each.
The people I named above make me sick, because I have feelings and a conscience. Can you dig?
kingdomofgodflag.info , says: April 12, 2019 at 8:19 am
Though there is a worldly justification for killing to obtain or maintain freedoms, there is no Christian justification for it. Which suggests that Christians who die while doing it, die in vain.

America’s wars are prosecuted by a military that includes Christians. They seldom question the killing their country orders them to do, as though the will of the government is that of the will of God. Is that a safe assumption for them to make? German Christian soldiers made that assumption regarding their government in 1939. Who was there to tell them otherwise? The Church failed, including the chaplains. (The Southern Baptist Convention declared the invasion of Iraq a just war in 2003.) These wars need to be assessed by Just War criteria. Christian soldiers need to know when to exercise selective conscientious objection, for it is better to go to prison than to kill without God’s approval. If Just War theory is irrelevant, the default response is Christian Pacifism.

Mark Thomason , says: April 12, 2019 at 10:43 am
“has gone un-investigated, unheard of, or unpunished.”

The one guy who did tell us has just been arrested for doing exactly that.

The arrest is cheered by those who fantasize about Russiagate, but it is expressly FOR telling us about these things.

Stephen J. , says: April 12, 2019 at 10:51 am
“Iraq Wrecked” a lot of innocent people. Millions are dead, cities reduced to rubble, homes and businesses destroyed and it was all a damned lie. And the perpetrators are Free.
Now there is sectarian violence too, where once there was a semblance of harmony amongst various denominations. See article link below.

“Are The Christians Slaughtered in The Middle East Victims of the Actions of Western War Criminals and Their Terrorist Supporting NATO ‘Allies’”?

http://graysinfo.blogspot.com/2017/04/are-christians-slaughtered-in-middle.html

the the , says: April 12, 2019 at 11:53 am
We are a globalist open borders and mass immigration nation. We stand for nothing. To serve in this nation’s military is very stupid. You aren’t defending anything. You are just a tool of globalism. Again, we don’t secure our borders. That’s a very big give away to what’s going on.
the the , says: April 12, 2019 at 11:57 am
If our nation’s military really was an American military concerned with our security we would have secured our border after 9/11, reduced all immigration, deported ALL muslims, and that’s it. Just secure the borders and expel Muslims! That’s all we needed to do.

Instead we killed so many people and imported many many more Muslims! And we call this compassion. Its insane.

Kouros , says: April 12, 2019 at 12:02 pm
Maybe if Talibans get back in power they will destroy the opium. You know, like they did when they were first in power…. It seems that wherever Americans get involved, drugs follow…
JohnT , says: April 12, 2019 at 2:03 pm
“Yet, we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources, and livelihood are all involved. So is the very structure of our society. In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex.” In Eisenhower’s televised farewell address January 17, 1961.
Rational thought would lead one to believe such words from a fellow with his credentials would have had a useful effect. But it didn’t. In point of fact, in the likes of Eric Prince and his supporters the notion of war as a profit center is quite literally a family affair.
Ken Zaretzke , says: April 12, 2019 at 2:10 pm
The military-industrial complex couldn’t accomplish this all by its lonesome self. The deep state was doing its thing. The two things overlap but aren’t the same. The deep state is not only or mainly about business profits, but about power. Power in the world means empire, which requires a military-industrial complex but is not reducible to it.

We now have a rare opportunity to unveil the workings of the deep state, but it will require a special counsel, and a lengthy written report, on the doings in the 2016 election of the FBI (Comey, Strzok, et. al.), and collaterally the CIA and DIA (Brennan and Clapper). Also the British government (M-16), John McCain, and maybe Bush and Obama judges on the FISA courts.

[Apr 15, 2019] Canada To Russia Meddling Is Okay If It Destabilizes You But Not The Other Way Around

Notable quotes:
"... While Russia is being set up as the scapegoat of the collapsing western liberal establishment, this most recent red alarm by Freeland and Canada's response to the "danger" is useful for two reasons: ..."
"... First and foremost, Freeland's shameless warnings over "foreign interference" have become so loud that an irony has become unavoidable. She has after all been caught red handed behind the destabilization of both Ukraine and Venezuela. Secondly, by reviewing the mechanisms being created by Canada to counter-act this "threat", a clear insight is provided into the inner workings of the actual foreign influences which infiltrated Canada many decades ago. ..."
"... On the first point, Freeland's role as a co-architect of the nazi-fueled overthrow of a pro-Russian government in February 2014 is now well known. Aside from her family's Nazi connections going back to her grandfather Michael Chomiak's leading role as a Nazi collaborator in WWII, and her own mother's role in helping to draft Ukraine's neo-liberal constitution, Freeland herself not only befriended leading neo-Nazi collaborators such as Canadian Ukrainian Congress' president Paul Grod and but has also promoted NATO's anti-Russian expansion across eastern Europe. ..."
"... Freeland set up a program for regime change which involved a two-part formula of 1) mobilizing mass direct support for the overthrow of a government, and 2) gaining international support for said overthrow. ..."
"... Canada itself was infiltrated by a foreign player many years ago and what we will briefly see is that Canada can only be called the "world's first post national-state nation" because it never really became a genuine nation in the first place, but was always manipulated by a foreign power... although not the one you think. ..."
"... It is from this cybernetics central node that the web of governance both in Canada and also across other British infiltrated territories in the Trans-Atlantic system is coordinated under the directives of London. ..."
Apr 15, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Canada To Russia: 'Meddling' Is Okay If It Destabilizes You But Not The Other Way Around

by Tyler Durden Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:50 74 SHARES Authored by Matthew Ehret via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

In the midst of one of the most de-stabilizing scandals to rock Canada in years, Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland announced on April 5 that the threat of "Foreign interference" going into the October 2019 elections was at an all-time high. Sitting beside her UK counterpart at a G7 meeting in France, Freeland stated:

"Interference is very likely and we think there have already been efforts by malign foreign actors to disrupt our democracy" . Her warning was echoed by an embattled puppet Prime Minister in Ottawa who stated it is "very clearly that countries like Russia are behind a lot of the divisive campaigns that have turned our politics even more divisive and more anger-filled than they have been in the past. "

The Measures to Defend the British Deep State

In order to counteract this "foreign threat", several Canadian mechanisms have been announced to "keep democracy safe" in alignment with the G7, Five Eyes and NATO. These mechanisms are:

The creation of an " Incident Public Protection Panel " run by five Privy Council bureaucrats under the Clerk of the Privy Council which will exist outside of the authority of the Chief Electoral Officer of Canada, whose job is to maintain the integrity of elections. In defense of this mysterious group, Canada's Democratic Institutions Minister Karina Gould stated that "it won't be one person who will decide what Canadians will be allowed to know" (apparently having five people decide is more democratic). The new Clerk of the Privy Council is Ian Stugart, who served as former deputy minister to Chrystia Freeland until just a few weeks ago.

A Security and Intelligence Election Threats Task Force which will incorporate all of Canada's intelligence agencies such as the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, the RCMP, the Communications Security Establishment (CSE) and Freeland's Global Affairs Canada. All of these agencies are Privy Council organizations.

The Rapid Response Mechanism of the G7 created in June 2018 and headquartered in Ottawa Canada in Freeland's Global Affairs Office and Privy Council Office.

While Russia is being set up as the scapegoat of the collapsing western liberal establishment, this most recent red alarm by Freeland and Canada's response to the "danger" is useful for two reasons:

First and foremost, Freeland's shameless warnings over "foreign interference" have become so loud that an irony has become unavoidable. She has after all been caught red handed behind the destabilization of both Ukraine and Venezuela. Secondly, by reviewing the mechanisms being created by Canada to counter-act this "threat", a clear insight is provided into the inner workings of the actual foreign influences which infiltrated Canada many decades ago.

Chrystia Freeland: Regime Change Princess of Ukraine and Venezuela

On the first point, Freeland's role as a co-architect of the nazi-fueled overthrow of a pro-Russian government in February 2014 is now well known. Aside from her family's Nazi connections going back to her grandfather Michael Chomiak's leading role as a Nazi collaborator in WWII, and her own mother's role in helping to draft Ukraine's neo-liberal constitution, Freeland herself not only befriended leading neo-Nazi collaborators such as Canadian Ukrainian Congress' president Paul Grod and but has also promoted NATO's anti-Russian expansion across eastern Europe.

Less well known but equally important is Freeland's leading role in planning for the Venezuelan coup attempt which has been recently halted thanks to Russia's March 23rd intervention.

Working alongside fellow Oxford operative Ben Rowswell (now head of the Canadian International Council/ Chatham House of Canada) during his three year tenure as Ambassador to Venezuela (2014-2017), Freeland set up a program for regime change which involved a two-part formula of 1) mobilizing mass direct support for the overthrow of a government, and 2) gaining international support for said overthrow.

Rowswell's on-the-ground work was designed to achieve the former as he himself admitted in a 2017 interview saying "We became one of the most vocal embassies in speaking out on human rights issues and encouraging Venezuelans to speak out" . Before leaving his post to become the head of the Chatham House of Canada, he tweeted "I don't think they (anti-Maduro forces) have anything to worry about because Minister Freeland has Venezuela way at the top of her priority list" .

Working on fulfilling the 2nd part of the formula, Freeland directed the creation of the "Lima Group". A Global News article of January 24 described the group in the following terms:

"Playing a key role behind the scenes was Lima Group member Canada, whose Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland spoke to Guaido the night before Maduro's swearing-in ceremony to offer her government's support should he confront the socialist leader".

It shouldn't be too surprising in our day and age that a nation with such a high reputation as "polite Canada" is actuality, an active agency for regime change and global governance. Canada's very Prime Minister did assert in 2016 that "Canada is the world's first post national-state nation" . What may surprise some readers is that Canada itself was infiltrated by a foreign player many years ago and what we will briefly see is that Canada can only be called the "world's first post national-state nation" because it never really became a genuine nation in the first place, but was always manipulated by a foreign power... although not the one you think.

The "Foreign Influence" Controlling Canada

While a longer presentation is needed to do this story justice, it is enough to note for now that neither Freeland, nor Rowswell are operating on behalf of Canada's interests, but are rather both operatives run by an entity that took over Canada many decades ago and are currently directed by two interlocking organizations: The Privy Council Office and the Rhodes-Milner Round Table Group .

The Privy Council Office

The Privy Council office was set up in 1867 in order to act as the British hand guiding its newly formed confederacy (Canada nearly became a part of Lincoln's America in the wake of the Civil War. The only thing stopping that outcome was Britain's creation of a confederation. The full story is told in the Imperial Myth of Canada's National Policy. ). While its power was always great, there was still room for independent policy making by nationalistic elected officials when the international conditions were favorable.

This was nearly entirely destroyed during the reign of technocratic golden boy Pierre Elliott Trudeau during his 1968-1973 reform of the Federal Government under the guidance of the OECD's Sir Alexander King. It was during this time Sir King's Club of Rome (Ottawa branch) was set up in Ottawa under the guidance of Trudeau and his clerk of the Privy Council Michael Pitfield, and other neo-Malthusian technocrats such as Privy Council President Michel Lamontagne, Maurice Strong, and Governor General Roland Mitchener.

It was from this control point in Ottawa in 1971 that the work later to become known as Limits to Growth was funded by tax payers and which became the bible for the new Malthusianism and blueprint for the "post-industrial society". It is from this cybernetics central node that the web of governance both in Canada and also across other British infiltrated territories in the Trans-Atlantic system is coordinated under the directives of London.

... ... ...


sir lozalot , 14 minutes ago link

this whole world wide medeling thing after our govs have been unashamedly meddling everywhere for years , it just shows thier fear, they are loosing thier populaces and looking for scapegoats, i love it, times are changing

Reaper , 19 minutes ago link

Obedience to a degenerating noble class or hegemony's psycho neo-ruling class is self-destructive.

Dude-dude , 1 hour ago link

...will Canada follow suit in order to become a true sovereign nation freed of all foreign imperial influence once and for all?

Ha ha (Bart Simpson style). Canada has, and will always be, a British-USA vassal-state (with a veneer of democratic elections). Washington tells the Ottawa government to jump! After asking permission from the UK, Canada negotiates with America as to how high - since the country is technically insolvent there isn't that much jumping room.

Neochrome , 2 hours ago link

Russia is charged with bringing things in the open, to the light, instead of letting creatures of the dark skulk in shadows, plotting, backstabbing, poisoning and conducting their "business" as usual. Because apparently democracy flourishes in darkness and ignorance...

[Apr 15, 2019] Neoliberal globalization is under sieve, countries that refuse to unconditionally open markts to transnationals and be vassal of Washington are now labeled as authoritarian

This slur "authoritarian state" is now peddled by neocons as synonym for the "countries we do not like"
This neocons in not very inventive... We already saw this line from Robert Kagan, who actually is a better writer. This neocon/neolib pressitute can't even use proper terms such as "neoliberalism" and "Washington consensus"
And slide to far-right nationalism and neo-fascism is direct result of neoliberalism dominance for the last 40 years (since Carter) and sliding of the standard of living of workers and the middle class.
Notable quotes:
"... Both countries have touted the virtues of their systems, while arguing that Western values are a source of decadence, amorality and disorder in the Western world. ..."
Apr 15, 2019 | www.bloomberg.com

Liberalism Is Under Siege. Conservatives Can Save It. - Bloomberg By Hal Brands

As international rivalry intensifies, the core strategic task for the U.S.-led democratic community is to contain the geopolitical influence and political disruption caused by authoritarian great powers, namely China and Russia. Yet that task is made all the harder because illiberalism -- and sympathy for those illiberal powers -- is simultaneously surging among key actors on the political right. If the U.S. and its allies are to succeed in the great global rivalry of the 21st century, the right must confront the threat of illiberalism within its ranks -- just as the left did during a previous twilight struggle in the 20th century.

... ... ...

This time, the threat is not expansionist communism, but a combination of autocracy and geopolitical revisionism. China has been moving toward a dystopian future of high-tech authoritarianism, as it pushes for greater power and influence overseas. Putin's Russia has consolidated an illiberal oligarchy, while using information warfare, political meddling and other tools to subvert liberal democracies in Europe, the U.S. and beyond.

Both countries have touted the virtues of their systems, while arguing that Western values are a source of decadence, amorality and disorder in the Western world.

... ... ...

It is not for nothing that the political scientist Marc Plattner has written that the gravest threat to liberal democracy today is “that it will end up being abandoned by substantial segments of the right.” And even in the U.S., there are alarming signs that conservative commitment to the norms of liberal democracy is under strain.

Hal Brands at Hal.Brands@jhu.edu

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Che Guevara10 hours ago ,

Communism was not a threat, but actually benefited the world in many ways.
It was communism that put pressure on capitalism to provide labor a fair share of wealth and income. As soon as Soviet communism collapsed, capitalism returned to its avaricious roots, resulting in stagnant wages for the working class. And the pauperization of the working class in recent decades is the cause for the current revolt against liberal capitalism.
So it was the competition from communism that was helping capitalism to stay healthy. Without it capitalism has degenerated into a Dickensian dystopia. We should therefore welcome any alternative socio-economic models to liberal capitalism.

EmilyEnso Che Guevara7 hours ago ,

It was communism that put pressure on capitalism to provide labor a fair
share of wealth and income. As soon as Soviet communism collapsed,
capitalism returned to

Thats a great point Che.
I have never ever looked at it from that angle.
Interesting.

EeeYepBlowing Whistles EmilyEnso7 hours ago ,

The odd thing is that both communism and capitalism are both controlled from the same evil hidden hand!!!

George Evans Che Guevara8 hours ago ,

the success of the Chinese efforts may just be the spur needed...

brad_sk13 hours ago ,

Robert Kagan of the Brookings Institution, who has long been a leading conservative intellectual, warns that this disillusion with liberal democracy “is clearly present among American conservatives, and not just among the ‘alt-right.’

Honest and real conservatives are far and fewer in today's MAGA/tea party infested GOP. Forget career politicians like Ted Cruz or McConnell, even the previously decent conservative think tanks/pundits like from NR or Erik Erickson or others have all given up on any principles and just bow at the altar of Trump now.

Sebastian Cremmington brad_sk29 minutes ago ,

No they haven’t, Trump decided to put McConnell in charge so of course the #neverTrumpers like the McConnell presidency...which consists of appointing Republican judges at record pace and little else.

johnny sunshine brad_sk4 hours ago ,

Or they've become the right wing of the Democratic party.

dnjake12 hours ago ,

The biggest need is to resist holy warriors like Hal Brands who want to destroy the world if it resists their version of revealed truth. They are the biggest threat to the human future. The United States has to learn to live in a world that it cannot control. The American goal should be to work towards a constructive human future not some kind of holy war to impose American control on the rest of the world. The United States is the biggest military spender. In recent history, It has been the world's global aggressor.

It has an history of wars that have made little difference whether America won or lost them. Perhaps the United States could succeed with some kind of genocide that wiped out all of the parts of the world that refuse to accept American supremacy. But, short of that kind of disgrace, the United States is not going to succeed in achieving any meaningful goal through war. As long as America does not destroy the world, the future is going to be determined by economic competition and the destinies that the people of different parts of the world choose for themselves.

dav123411 hours ago ,

The author needs a reality check. Much of what he says is in his imagination.

emno33 hours ago ,

I had wondered if it was noticed the Liberalism was dying. The world has turned hard right, with all the anger, nationalism, do-as-I-say, and social intolerance. I don't even the children of today.

Camus534 hours ago ,

I might suggest that liberals themselves are destroying their freedoms with illogical illiberal liberalism.

YOU can't do that, say that, act like that, think like that...no no no...we must act and be correct, nice, polite, all forgiving and never critical.

Huh?

The freedoms that so many of us marched for, fought for, voted for, sang about (thank gawd the music still lives), got bloody for, even died for, are slipping away quicker than you can say me, me, me...it's all about me.

Maybe...small maybe...our youth can once again awaken America and the world's conscience. Maybe? Maybe not!

Mark Miller9 hours ago ,

"Just as the Cold War left broke with communism"

Wha? It seems our LIttle Cultural Revolution is just warming up. Wait till AOC et al are all growed up.

"This is a moment when the “free world” needs to be strong and united."

Is this the same "free" world that jails grandmothers over contested historical views? That has reneged on free speech?

Thanks to a truly ethnomasochistic immigration policy, I assure you that this will not happen. The West will be lucky if squeaks through this period without a civil war.

[Apr 13, 2019] America as a Myth of good life is a powerful tool of color revolutions

Highly recommended!
This is a pretty accurate description of "Myth about the USA" which is very common in xUSSR area too.
Notable quotes:
"... The farther you are from the US, the more mythical it becomes. Here in Ea Kly, most people have never been to Saigon, much less California, New York or Las Vegas, so their faith in the US can become childishly fanatical. This week, I met three brothers who still regret not jumping on a boat to escape, forty years ago. Every Vietnamese they know who ended up in the US had become fabulously rich, they insisted, and they cited a man who returned to build a road for his village as a typical example. ..."
"... A man in his 40's asked me if wife swapping is common in the US. As evidenced by every movie and music video, America is this insanely sexed up place where everybody is always jumping into everybody else's bed, not the land of widespread porn addiction, compulsive masturbators, bitter divorcees, smart phone exhibitionism, paid cuddlers and the never married growing old alone. ..."
"... A woman told me that she had a friend in the US who was making "only" $2,400 a month, "How can you live on so little?" "Many Americans make less than that," I answered. "I sure did most of my time there." ..."
"... She looked amused. She had no idea most Americans have to pay around 20% of their incomes on taxes, and that housing and transportation costs eat up half of their paychecks. ..."
"... As New York, Chicago, Miami, Houston, Denver, Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles become covered with feces from homeless Americans, American colonies will be set up not just on Mars, but Venus, Mercury, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, in whatever order, for they're all as near as Hollywood, or your computer, assuming you'll still have one. ..."
Apr 13, 2019 | www.unz.com

Originally from: America as Religion, by Linh Dinh - The Unz Review by Linh Dinh

America's most enduring export has been its image. Self-infatuated, it seduces everyone into worshipping its self-portrait. In 1855, Walt Whitman wrote, "The United States themselves are essentially the greatest poem," then set out to define this "greatest poem" to the rest of the world, a monumental achievement. In 2005, Harold Pinter said, "I put to you that the United States is without doubt the greatest show on the road. Brutal, indifferent, scornful and ruthless it may be but it is also very clever. As a salesman it is out on its own and its most saleable commodity is self-love. It's a winner."

The farther you are from the US, the more mythical it becomes. Here in Ea Kly, most people have never been to Saigon, much less California, New York or Las Vegas, so their faith in the US can become childishly fanatical. This week, I met three brothers who still regret not jumping on a boat to escape, forty years ago. Every Vietnamese they know who ended up in the US had become fabulously rich, they insisted, and they cited a man who returned to build a road for his village as a typical example.

These aborted boat people looked at me with scorn when I told them there are plenty of poor Americans, with many in such despair they drug themselves to death, and life in the US is often a very lonely experience, even for the native-born, with roots going back generations. I was besmirching these naïfs' religion.

A man in his 40's asked me if wife swapping is common in the US. As evidenced by every movie and music video, America is this insanely sexed up place where everybody is always jumping into everybody else's bed, not the land of widespread porn addiction, compulsive masturbators, bitter divorcees, smart phone exhibitionism, paid cuddlers and the never married growing old alone.

A woman told me that she had a friend in the US who was making "only" $2,400 a month, "How can you live on so little?" "Many Americans make less than that," I answered. "I sure did most of my time there."

She looked amused. She had no idea most Americans have to pay around 20% of their incomes on taxes, and that housing and transportation costs eat up half of their paychecks.

Most people in Ea Kly have never even seen an American. In the next town, Krong Buk, there's a white resident, the only one in a 30 mile radius. Most of his neighbors know him as simply ông Tây, Mr. Westerner, though some do call by his first name, Peter.

A man said to Peter, "Merci, madame," the only Western phrase he knew.

Most have no idea that Peter is actually Swiss , and not American, but he's rich enough, by local standards, so he's more or less an American.

White people are rich, live in fabulous countries, travel all over and can suddenly show up even in Krong Buk to buy a nice piece of land by the lake, build an elegant house, with a guest bungalow next to it. Whereas the locals only fish in this lake , the white man swims daily, for he knows how to enjoy life.

The apex of whiteness, though, is the United States of America, a country that didn't just drop seven million tons of bombs on Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, as well as 20 million gallons of herbicides, mostly Agent Orange, but sent twelve tall, clean cut and good intentioned white men to the moon, a transcendental feat that's still unequaled after half a century, and it's a safe bet that neither the Russians, Chinese nor anyone else will be able to accomplish this for a while, maybe ever. Of course, Americans can return to the moon tomorrow if they want to, but they're already looking way beyond it.

As New York, Chicago, Miami, Houston, Denver, Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles become covered with feces from homeless Americans, American colonies will be set up not just on Mars, but Venus, Mercury, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, in whatever order, for they're all as near as Hollywood, or your computer, assuming you'll still have one.

[Apr 13, 2019] A reconciliation and an alliance between Europe and Russia would challenge the supremacy of the United States

Apr 13, 2019 | www.atlantico.fr

The United States are working hard to identify the perpetrators of the attack against the plane of the Malaysian Airlines and were very quick to point the finger at pro-Russian rebels.

Atlantico: The United States put a lot of efforts for blaming those who they consider to be the perpetrators of the attack against the plane of the Malaysian Airlines and were very quick to point the finger at pro-Russian. What interest do they have to point finger at Russia?

Jean-Bernard Pinatel: Since the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989, policy makers and American politicians perceived a major threat:

that a reconciliation and an alliance between Europe and Russia would challenge the supremacy of the United States, which is allowing them with impunity to interfere in the internal affairs of any country, or invade them, and intepret international law in their private interests as most recently demonstrated the case of the BNP bank.

To understand this undeniable reality requires that we consider a historical context of those events.

In 1997, former National Security Adviser of the United States, Zbigniew Brzezinski, published under the title "The Grand Chessboard" a book adopting the two concepts, coined by Mackinder, Eurasia and "Heartland." He repeated his account his famous maxim: "who governs the Eastern Europe dominates the Heartland; who governs the Heartland dominates EuroAsia; which governs the EuroAsia dominates the World World. "

He makes the following conclution: "For America, the chief geopolitical issue is Eurasia." In another publication (1), he make this though more explicit: "If Ukraine fell, he wrote, it would greatly reduce the geopolitical options for Russia. Even without the Baltic states and Poland, Russia, which would retain control of Ukraine could always aspire with confidence to the direction of a Eurasian empire. But without Ukraine and its 52 million Slav brothers and sisters, any attempt to Moscow to rebuild the Eurasian empire threatens to lead Russia in lengthy disputes with non-Slavic national and difference religious groups. ".

Between 2002 and 2004, to implement this strategy, the United States has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to help the pro-Western Ukrainian opposition to gain power. Millions of dollars also cooperation came from private institutes such as the Soros Foundation and European governments. This money does not go directly to political parties. He passed by including foundations and non-governmental organizations who advised the opposition, allowing it to be equipped with the technical resources and the latest advertising tools. An American cable from January 5, 2010, published on the WikiLeaks website (ref. 10WARSAW7) shows the involvement of Poland in color revolutions of former Eastern European countries. The role of NGOs is particularly exposed (2). The Wikileaks cables demonstrate continuous efforts and the continued commitment of the United States to extend their sphere of influence in Eastern Europe, and first of all in Ukraine.

Ukraine is undergoing a civil war. Yet nobody in the West denounced the ardor with which the Ukrainian government is trying to subdue the separatists. What is the real interest of Americans to ignore this reality and support the Ukrainian government? What did they gain?

The Ukrainian state is a construction of Stalin and exists independently only since 1991, after the breakup of the Soviet bloc. He previously existed between 1917 and 1921 between the fall of Tsarism in 1917 and the victory of the Bolsheviks that dismambered this new state into 4 parts. Ex-Russian part of Ukraine, with Kiev as its capital, the birthplace of civilization and Russian culture was integrated with the USSR while the former Austrian part, with Lviv's as the local capital was absorbed by the Poland.

Little Ukraine "Transcarpathia" voted for unification with Czechoslovakia and in Bukovina Ukrainian minority resigned himself to unification with Romania.

But Ukraine does not mean a nation. Ukrainians have no common history. Quite the contrary. During the second world war, when in the summer of 1941, Ukraine was invaded by the armies of the Reich, the Germans were received as liberators by the Western part of Ukraine. In contrast in the Easten Ukraine, they met strong resistance from the local population which continued until 1944

In retaliation, the Germans track down supporters and burned hundreds of villages. In April 1943, an SS division Galicia is made from Ukrainian volunteers whose descendants formed the stromtroops of the EuroMaidan. This SS division was also used by the Germans in Slovakia to suppress the Slovak national movement. But Ukrainian and American pro-Western did everything at the end of the war, to throw a veil over the atrocities committed by this division and retain only the anti-Soviet struggle. However, historians estimate more than 220,000 Ukrainians enlisted alongside the German forces during the Second World War to fight the Soviet regime.

This history helps explain why civil war is possible and why the part of Ukrainian forces consisting of troops from the West can use tanks and planes against separatists from the East.

Ukrainian President with the complicity of silence of the majority of politicians and Western media launched a war against part of the population of the country with the same cruelty that is attibuted to Syrian dictator. In addition, the Ukrainian armed forces are advised by American special forces and mercenaries.

The USA and Obama was [rpovoke Russia into invation of Ukraine in order to revive the cold war between the West and the East. Putin has understood the trap "Nobel Peace Winner" Obama created for him. First he advised the Ukrainian separatists not to hold the referendum; then he did not recognize its result and showed a moderation which surprised all independent observers while tanks and planes indiscrimnatly attack a Russian-speaking population.

How Ukraine can prevent the creation of a Europe-Russia alliance? Why the United States so actively try to prevent it?

The Americans continued to put pressure on Europe in order to integrate Ukraine and Georgia into NATO, which would constitute an unacceptable provocation to Russia.

Fortunately, European leaders have not bent to the will of Washington, which in this case acts solely in its own interests. Similarly, if Putin gave in to pressure from ultra-nationalist and openly intervened in Ukraine, the United States would achieved their strategic goal and the Cold War in Europe would be restarted damaging our fundamental interests.

Why Europe acts as vassal of the USA? Does it really interested to follow the American strategy?

Many European leaders got their education in the United States. They are members of American "Think-Tanks" or "transatlantic foundations" such as the "American Foundation" which largely finance their benefits and travel. The Atlanticism is certainly manufactured not only by the awareness that we share the same democratic values ​​with the American people but also by the multitude of personal interests of many European leaders whose standard of living depends on their submission to the will of the USA.

Nevertheless, more and more Europeans are beginning to tell the difference between the American state which is, in fact, run by lobbies, the most important of which is the military-industrial lobby and the American nation whose values ​​and economic and cultural dynamism possess an undeniable attractiveness and remains for young European wonderful school.

Angela Merkel and the Germans are at the forefront of this awareness because they have not accepted the permanent industrial espionage which the NSA use againt this country. Furthermore, the revelation of the laptop plays Angela Merkel strongly shocked the country. Spiegel of November 3, 2013 claiming that now even political asylum for Edward Snowden in on the agenda. In the article "Asil Für Snowden" Europe's biggest daily published extensive excerpts of his revelations.

On 10 July 2014, the German government announced the expulsion of the head of the American secret services in Germany, as part of a spy case against German officials who provided intelligence information to Washington, a move unprecedented among allies within NATO. "The representative of the United States Intelligence Agency at the Embassy of the United States of America was asked to leave Germany," said the government spokesman Steffen Seibert said in a statement. The expulsion comes "in response to a lack of cooperation that was long in efforts to clarify" the activity of American intelligence agents in Germany, told a German MEP, Clemens Binninger, President of the Parliamentary Oversight Committee on intelligence, which met in Berlin on Thursday.

In France, the former Prime Minister Michel Rocard , a sociologist Edgar Morin , former ministers Luc Ferry and Jack Lang and former European MP Daniel Cohn- Bendit, launched a petition calling on President Francois Hollande , his Prime Minister Manuel Valse and Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius "promptly grant Edward Snowden political asylum .

Unfortunately for France and Europe , Francois Hollande , as part of the French intelligentsia , still admires Barack Obama , and Laurent Fabius for a long time received funds from U.S. foundations . Neither of them realize that their policies pose a threat to the strategic interests of France and Europe.

Jean-Bernard Pinatel , General, recognized expert on economic and geopolitical matters.

Original publication : La véritable raison pour laquelle les États-Unis se préoccupent tant de l'Ukraine tout en se foutant éperdument des Ukrainiens

[Apr 13, 2019] The appearance of Israeli weapons in the hands of avowed neo-Nazis

Notable quotes:
"... The ziocon-occupied US Congress "is Arming Neo-Nazis in Ukraine" https://youtu.be/x5Uf7aooxvE ..."
Apr 13, 2019 | www.unz.com

annamaria , says: March 15, 2019 at 10:48 pm GMT

@Agent76

On the topics of holo-biz and Russophobia: "the appearance of Israeli weapons in the hands of avowed neo-Nazis"

https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/rights-groups-demand-israel-stop-arming-neo-nazis-in-the-ukraine-1.6248727

The ziocon-occupied US Congress "is Arming Neo-Nazis in Ukraine" https://youtu.be/x5Uf7aooxvE

Agent76 , says: March 15, 2019 at 9:05 pm GMT
Mar 4, 2019

Excellent Short Film About the Separatist Fighters of Donbas by Russell 'Texas' Bentley (Video)

A monastery near the Donetsk airport was strategically important to hold for the fighter, so a bitter shooting battle erupted over it, taking many lives on both sides. The monastery was badly damaged in the process.

https://russia-insider.com/en/excellent-short-film-about-separatist-fighters-donbas-russell-texas-bentley-video/ri26262

Sep 9, 2016 US funded Ukrainian army is terrorizing civilians, 2016

Russell Bentley is a former US marine, that now fights for the Donbass, Eastern Ukraine, against the US-funded Ukrainian army.

[Apr 13, 2019] Russia Warns New World Order Being Formed

Notable quotes:
"... "The Western liberal model of development, which particularly stipulates a partial loss of national sovereignty – this is what our Western colleagues aimed at when they invented what they called globalization – is losing its attractiveness and is no more viewed as a perfect model for all. Moreover, many people in the very western countries are skeptical about it," Lavrov said. ..."
"... "The US and its allies are trying to impose their approaches on others," Lavrov noted. ..."
"... "They are guided by a clear desire to preserve their centuries-long dominance in global affairs although from the economic and financial standpoint, the US – alone or with its allies – can no longer resolve all global economic and political issues," he said. ..."
"... "In order to preserve their dominance and recover their indisputable authority, they use blackmail and pressure. They don't hesitate to blatantly interfere in the affairs of sovereign states." ..."
"... Agree with the assessment other than the claim the US has had centuries long global dominance, or even influence. ..."
Apr 13, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov declared today that the Western, liberal model of society is dying, and a new world order is taking its place.

Lavrov made the comments at his annual meeting with students and professors at the Foreign Ministry's Diplomatic Academy, reported Russian state news agency TASS.

"The Western liberal model of development, which particularly stipulates a partial loss of national sovereignty – this is what our Western colleagues aimed at when they invented what they called globalization – is losing its attractiveness and is no more viewed as a perfect model for all. Moreover, many people in the very western countries are skeptical about it," Lavrov said.

According to him, global development is guided "by processes aimed at boosting multipolarity and what we call a polycentric world order."

"Clearly, multipolarity and the emergence of new centers of power in every way requires efforts to maintain global stability and search for a balance of interests and compromises, so diplomacy should play a leading role here," Lavrov went on to say.

"Particularly because there are a lot of issues that require generally acceptable solutions."

These include regional conflicts, international terrorism, food security and environmental protection. This is why we believe that only diplomacy can help make agreements and reach sustainable decisions that will be accepted by all.

"The US and its allies are trying to impose their approaches on others," Lavrov noted.

"They are guided by a clear desire to preserve their centuries-long dominance in global affairs although from the economic and financial standpoint, the US – alone or with its allies – can no longer resolve all global economic and political issues," he said.

"In order to preserve their dominance and recover their indisputable authority, they use blackmail and pressure. They don't hesitate to blatantly interfere in the affairs of sovereign states."

Perry Colace

When I was a kid, the Soviet Union was the enemy. Now Russia (with an economy, population, military and world influence the fraction of the United States) seems to be one of the few places in the world that makes any bit of sense and ACTUALLY cares a little bit about its culture and people.

Fluff The Cat

"The Western liberal model of development, which particularly stipulates a partial loss of national sovereignty – this is what our Western colleagues aimed at when they invented what they called globalization – is losing its attractiveness and is no more viewed as a perfect model for all.Moreover, many people in the very western countries are skeptical about it," Lavrov said.

A Judaic-Masonic world order is the end goal. It entails the complete loss of sovereignty for all Western nations and the slow genocide of white Christians via miscegnation and displacement by third-worlders.

lnardozi

I can't think of a man more American than Putin.

Sell the bases, come home, stop bothering others and trying to run world affairs.

Then we can spend a nice nice century or so rebuilding our infrastructure and trimming our out-of-control federal government.

The clue is right there in the name - the united STATES of America. A state is a sovereign country with its own laws - except for those powers enumerated in the Constitution which the federal government should have.

That's the whole point - competition in government. You don't like the state you're in - you're guaranteed the choice of 49 others, along with all your possessions.

notfeelinthebern

Agree with the assessment other than the claim the US has had centuries long global dominance, or even influence.

johnnycanuck

Western global dominance, US took over from the British Empire with the assistance of the banksters class. It's all there in the history books, you just need to spend time

consider me gone

As much as I hate to say it, this was Winston Churchill's idea. Even as the war was just starting, he was a major advocate for the West controlling the globe after WWII.

But I'll bet he had no idea that the West would abandon traditional Western values in the process. He wouldn't watch TV and predicted it would turn society into unthinking idiots. He nailed that one anyhow.

The Alliance

"...many people in the very western countries are skeptical about it," Lavrov said.

Skeptical?

I, for one, would show up early and highly motivated to march against, and to destroy, these treasonous, malevolent, collectivist Globalists.

The Globalists within the United States government are traitors--traitors, by definition. They have declared war on our republic.

CDN_Rebel

Russia works because they have a ruthless tyrant who happens to be incredibly competent. That same system with a weak ruler will collapse entirely in a matter of months. I like Putin, but he needs to groom an ironfisted successor pronto.

As for the chows - they need to print half a trillion a month to stay afloat and that's your model?

The west is only fucked because the sleeping masses refuse to acknowledge that Marxists have undermined our institutions... It would take only a few years to scrub these subversive ***** from our society if we had the balls to do it

johnnycanuck

yadda yadda yadda.. marxists, subversives, commies, all the catch phrases of ye old Joe McCarthy. Russia works because Russians have a history of enduring adversity. Unlike Americans.

Moribundus

It is eventually end of era of western imperialism, era that lasted 900 years. Game is over

[Apr 12, 2019] Skripal, the Russkies and Bellingcat

The fact that Glenn Greenwald proved to be a despicable pressitute cast a long shadow of Snowden and Assange.
Notable quotes:
"... Not mentioned by any of the major news media is the fact that Bellingcat is funded by the National Endowment for Democracy (sic), renowned for its interference in foreign elections, funding terrorists and overthrowing governments the US doesn't approve of. ..."
Sep 27, 2018 | investigatingimperialism.wordpress.com
September 27, 2018 September 27, 2018 27 September 2018 -- Investigating Imperialism

I smell a rat!

A quick comment about the two Russian alleged assassins, exposed, we are told by the 'investigative' Website, Bellingcat. Not mentioned by any of the major news media is the fact that Bellingcat is funded by the National Endowment for Democracy (sic), renowned for its interference in foreign elections, funding terrorists and overthrowing governments the US doesn't approve of.

Media Lens picked up on this awhile back in reference to another Western financed outfit, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), funded by the UK Foreign Office. I've also expanded this by quoting from Media Lens' other article that deals with Western-funded disinfo, ' Douma: Part 1 – Deception In Plain Sight':

Liberal corporate journalists and politicians have been impressed by the fact that SOHR and White Helmets claims have been supported by ostensibly forensic analysis supplied by the Bellingcat website, which publishes 'citizen journalist' investigations. As we noted in a recent alert, Bellingcat is funded by the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), which is funded by the US government and is 'a notorious vehicle for US soft power'. – ' The Syrian Observatory – Funded By The Foreign Office ', Media Lens, June 4 2018

It's worth quoting more of the Media Lens article as it exposes the nature of Western so-called lefties and their attachment to Western (funded) propaganda outfits:

In the New Statesman, Paul Mason offered a typically nonsensical argument, linking to the anti-Assad website, Bellingcat:

'Despite the availability of public sources showing it is likely that a regime Mi-8 helicopter dropped a gas container onto a specific building, there are well-meaning people prepared to share the opinion that this was a "false flag", staged by jihadis, to pull the West into the war. The fact that so many people are prepared to clutch at false flag theories is, for Western democracies, a sign of how effective Vladimir Putin's global strategy has been.'

Thus, echoing Freedland's reference to 'denialists and conspiracists', sceptics can only be idiot victims of Putin's propaganda. US media analyst Adam Johnson of FAIR accurately described Mason's piece as a 'mess', adding :

'I love this thing where nominal leftists run the propaganda ball for bombing a country 99 yards then stop at the one yard and insist they don't support scoring goals, that they in fact oppose war.'

Surprisingly, the Bellingcat website, which publishes the findings of 'citizen journalist' investigations, appears to be taken seriously by some very high-profile progressives.

In the Independent, Green Party leader Caroline Lucas also mentioned the Syrian army 'Mi-8' helicopters. Why? Because she had read the same Bellingcat blog as Mason, to which she linked:

'From the evidence we've seen so far it appears that the latest chemical attack was likely by Mi-8 helicopters, probably from the forces of Syria's murderous President Assad.'

On Democracy Now!, journalist Glenn Greenwald said of Douma:

'I think that it's -- the evidence is quite overwhelming that the perpetrators of this chemical weapons attack, as well as previous ones, is the Assad government '

This was an astonishing comment. After receiving fierce challenges (not from us), Greenwald partially retracted, tweeting :

'It's live TV. Something [sic – sometimes] you say things less than ideally. I think the most likely perpetrator of this attack is Syrian Govt.'

We wrote to Greenwald asking what had persuaded him of Assad's 'likely' responsibility for Douma. (Twitter, April 10, direct message)

The first piece of evidence he sent us (April 12) was the Bellingcat blog mentioning Syrian government helicopters cited by Mason and Lucas. Greenwald also sent us a report from Reuters, as well as a piece from 2017, obviously prior to the alleged Douma event.

This was thin evidence indeed for the claim made. In our discussion with him, Greenwald then completely retracted his claim (Twitter, April 12, direct message) that there was evidence of Syrian government involvement in the alleged attack. [My emph. WB] – ' Douma: Part 1 – Deception In Plain Sight'

[Apr 11, 2019] Zelensky deflects Poroshenko question about being 'Kolomoisky's puppet'

Notable quotes:
"... Presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky has responded to remarks by incumbent President Petro Poroshenko about the former's dependence on Ukrainian businessman Ihor Kolomoisky with a statement about ex-First Deputy Secretary of Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) Oleh Hladkovsky (formerly Oleh Svynarchuk), the suspect identified in corruption in the defense sector by investigative journalists. ..."
"... He said again that I am a puppet of Kolomoisky. I have only one question, I think he will be amazed too: So you are a puppet of Svynarchuk, or is Svynarchuk your puppet? ..."
Apr 11, 2019 | interfax.com.ua

Presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky has responded to remarks by incumbent President Petro Poroshenko about the former's dependence on Ukrainian businessman Ihor Kolomoisky with a statement about ex-First Deputy Secretary of Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) Oleh Hladkovsky (formerly Oleh Svynarchuk), the suspect identified in corruption in the defense sector by investigative journalists.

"I've just watched the press conference of our guarantor. He said again that I am a puppet of Kolomoisky. I have only one question, I think he will be amazed too: So you are a puppet of Svynarchuk, or is Svynarchuk your puppet? Please, pass this question on to the guarantor of the constitution (president)," Zelensky said at a briefing at his election headquarters on Sunday evening.

As reported, Poroshenko on Sunday evening after publication of exit polls in the presidential election said he was fated to run against "Kolomoisky's puppet" in the second round of presidential elections scheduled for April 21.

"We will not give Kolomoisky any chance," Poroshenko said.

[Apr 11, 2019] A poll suggests that the losers' votes are most likely to go to Zelensky in the runoff on the 21st

Apr 11, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

A poll suggests that the losers' votes are most likely to go to Zelensky in the runoff on the 21st.

Putin is apparently a candidate, or is Poroshenko saying Zelensky is Putin's puppet? More questions than answers: will Poroshenko contrive to cancel the election? Is Zelensky a beard for Kolomoisky ? How's Tymoshenko going to take being knocked out? Has she cut a deal with Zelensky? How much cheating ? (And sotto voce: does anybody care any more? ) Speculations .

David Schuler , 4 hours ago

Possibly relevant this morning in the Wall Street Journal George P. Schultz, William J. Perry, and Sam Nunn have an op-ed highlighting that a nuclear threat is not a thing of the past.

The good news: they characterize the U. S.'s Russia policy as "dysfunctional" (which it is) and call for renewed dialogue with Russia.

The bad news: they also call for strengthening NATO.

It seems to me that those two goals are contradictory. Expanding NATO beyond its original membership is a key component of the dysfunction and a barrier to renewed dialogue with Russia.

[Apr 10, 2019] A few initial thoughts about the first round of the Ukrainian Presidential election by The Saker

Sakers has a strong pro-Russian bias, and it shows. the process of distancing from Russia was common for all post-Soviet republics and actually was caused by the mere fact of acquiring independence. That it took such a self-destructive form in Ukraine is many ways the net result to Washington geopolitical machinations (supported by Germany, Poland and Sweden).
The key problem is not EuroMaydan nationalist "revolution" per se, but that fact that Ukrainian nationalists proved to be neoliberal compradors. Ukraine became the debt slave of the West. Under neoliberal neocolonialism this is a very stable condition that guarantees that the standard of living of people will not improve. The country will be sacked dry. So Ukraine is an example of "Latin-Americanization" of post Soviet space -- that policy that Washington actively implemented since 1991. After huge initial success with puppet Yeltsin regime, they failed to weaken and dismember Russia further due to ascendance of Putin. But for all other republics it was pretty successful neocolonial policy. They now have military bases in few of those republics and most of them are debt slaves of IMF and World bank. In a way EuroMaydan signified the finishing touches of conversion of this region into dent slaves.
Neoliberal Washington was turned into an oligarchy, an autocracy run by Davos billionaires. Their "liberty" and democracy was an early example of Orwellian Doublethink. It was to destroy everybody else's liberty so they could grab whatever they could, enslave the debtors and create the polarized hostile to each other countries in post-Soviet state that are easily controlled ("divide and conquer" strategy along with "Full Spectrum Dominance" mantra and neoliberal "Washington Consensus" method of enslavement). Ukraine is the most glaring example of this enslavement --the country with Central African level of poverty. It is very similar how Roman oligarchy behaved -- the Roman oligarchy accused anyone of supporting debtor rights and opposing its land grabs of "seeking kingship." Such men were murdered, century after century. It seems that unless there's a Hammurabi-style "divine king" or some elected civic regulatory authority arise, local neoliberal oligarchies arise and help to exploit their societies by Washington as much as they can, while trying to prevent the country from defending itself. In few countries like Hungary far right ascendance slowed down this process, but for how long is unlearn as global finance is controlled from London and Washington and can crash any individual country like a bug.
The Romans brutal "mission civilisatrice", can be viewed as to instll local oligarchy and and kind of "financialized" economy in other countries. For performing this service, the imperial power takes all the money that its colonies can generate. Washington is not different. That's why the US meddles in foreign politics of other countries, as we have just seen in Ukraine, Libya and Syria.
This overgrowth of debt under neoliberalism is highly destabilizing. Financial oligarchy have broken free of tax liability and are enriching themselves not by helping the overall country economy grow and raising living standards, but just the opposite: by getting the country into bigger and bigger debt. This is the essence of Poroshenko regime -- corrupt comprador oligarchy.
So there is no surprise that everybody hates Poroshenko and even huge "administrative resource" and personal wealth did not help him to get more then 15% of votes (of which 5-10% are probably fraudulent). That's typical for any neoliberal president who stand for re-election in a debt slave country. But it is important to to note that this Washington marionette made the situation much worse that the situation existed under Yanukovich (which was also corrupt as hell).
The role of Israel in EuroMaydan is open to review and one comment below addresses that.
Some comments are more informed and are more interesting then the article, for example by Beckow.
An interesting and funny detail is proliferation of "Children of lieutenant Schmitt" -- Holocaust survivors in Ukraine. People who were born in 1945, the first post-war generation, are now 75, right ? And life expectantly for this generation is probably 65 for men and 75 for women.
Notable quotes:
"... Poroshenko's absolutely vital goal was to make it into the 2nd round. Had he failed to make it he would have had to immediately jump into an aircraft and leave the country (because the most likely victor of the Presidential election would have been Iulia Tymoshenko and we can be darn sure that she would immediately jail him and most of his cronies). ..."
"... it is practically impossible to falsify an election and compensate for, say, a 15%-20% difference. But to cheat and change a result by less than 5% is much more doable. ..."
"... As for Zelenskii, he scores just like Poroshenko. ... ... ... ...Zelenskii is just a glorified puppet and everybody in the Ukraine knows that his puppet-master is Igor Kolomoiskii who is waiting out the final outcome of the Presidential election safely hidden in, you guessed it, Israel. ..."
"... Still, in theory, it is almost impossible for Poroshenko to win this one. Not only do all the other candidates hate Poroshenko way more than they would dislike Zelenskii, voters for Tymoshenko or Boiko are far more likely to vote for Zelenskii than for Poroshenko. ..."
"... Most votes went to Zelenski that is indication that Ukrainians now did loose their enthusiasm, and they are becoming more lethargic. ..."
"... Hillary Clinton's State Department funneled $5 billion to orchestrate a "revolution" to overthrow the elected President of Ukraine in 2014. (See my June 7, 2016 blog post for details.) Ukraine's President was ousted because he refused to support Ukraine joining the EU and NATO, and violence spread throughout Ukraine as CIA funded factions fought for power. ..."
"... With the exception of the Baltic states, that simply isn't true of any nation from the former Soviet Union. Otherwise, the Russians couldn't have set up the Eurasian Customs Union which covers ~90% of the former USSR. There are even many Georgians working in Russia, in spite of the short war that was started by US dummy and former Georgian then Ukrainian, now stateless, Mikheil Saakashvili. ..."
"... I say the best solution for Ukraine would be to leave the nazis among themselves by giving independence to Galicia. If it's the price to pay to reintegrate Donbass, for the economy, and for peace and stability, it's worth it. ..."
"... He has been in the office for 5 years and 85% of people want someone else. How much clearer could this be? This was a massive vote of no-confidence by Ukrainians. If Porky squeezes or cheats his way into staying as president, he is asking for trouble – it is not sustainable and Washington knows it. ..."
"... Galicia and Donbas also clearly cannot coexist in the same non-federated state, they are on opposite sides. ..."
"... That takes away 3-5% of the Ukrainian economy. If Russia piles on and restricts more trade, or limits remittances, there will inevitably by a recession in Ukraine. The circus is about to re-start, no wonder the clowns are renting stadiums. But at some point the distractions will cease to distract – and then the damn reality will hit even harder ..."
"... Most importantly, the masters are OK with it. Imperial gauleiter of Ukraine Volker has already voiced his support for Porky. Porky would likely be more obedient than anyone else: he can be blackmailed, as he has already earned gallows (or life in prison in countries that don't have death penalty). So, the masters have already chosen their favorite puppet. We'll see on April 21st how much influence they have. ..."
"... I am not saying that Zelensky (and his puppet master Kolomoisky) won't do, but from masters' point of view old clown is apparently preferable to the new one. ..."
"... the first step when things don't go well, is to rotate the clowns. We got Macron, the German doppelganger for Merkel, elites tried Renzi in Italy, so maybe Zelinsky could work. He is a complete tabula rasa, non-entity, that wouldn't know how to find the executive washroom. At a minimum, he would buy some time. Next they can still try Tymoshenko. This will not get resolved through the political process. ..."
"... If the masters allow new clown to win, Gas princess can be made the speaker of the Rada ..."
"... I am not sure what is left to be gained in Ukraine, it is all costs and very few benefits. That's what happens when the layered lying becomes so convoluted that the masters lose track of the objectives. ..."
"... They wanted Crimea (actually Russia out of Crimea bases, NATO in) – that failed. Everything else were distractions, false promises, and payoffs to locals. A normal master would accept the defeat, take his toys home, and wait for the next time. The post-modern Washingtonians instead pretend that the sweet talk was real , try for silly, secondary objectives (how about a few missiles on the Russian border? that would work out great), or refuse to accept the obvious. Making the whole fiasco more costly. ..."
"... As to a few missiles on Russian border, they already have that in Baltic vaudeville states, which are much closer to Moscow and especially Sankt Petersburg then Zhmerinka. ..."
"... Then again, I am looking at it rationally, whereas Washington politburo is getting even less rational that the Soviet one under Brezhnev. ..."
"... In April this year [2018] the U.S. supplied Javelin anti-tank missiles to Ukraine and in May 2018 the U.S. Congress approved $250m of military funding, specifically including deliveries of lethal weaponry. ..."
"... President Donald Trump's special envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker (a neocon, acolyte of senator John McCain, previously appointed by George Bush as U.S. ambassador to NATO) announced further U.S. arms supplies would follow, boasting of rising anti-Russian sentiment in Ukraine. ..."
"... The zionists have been in cahoots with the neo-Nazi throughout the whole State Dept. criminal enterprise in Ukraine. The Kagans clan of holo-biz survivors and other pro-Nazi Jewish activists such as Gershman (NED) and Foxman (ADL) have been the moving force towards banderization of Ukraine ..."
Apr 08, 2019 | www.unz.com
The Nazis suffered a crushing defeat in this election.
By "Nazis" I primarily mean their main figurehead – Petro Poroshenko (the rest of the "minor Nazis" did so poorly that they don't matter anymore). Think of it: in spite of his immense wealth (he outspent everybody else and even spent more that twice what the next big spender – Tymoshenko – doled out for each vote), in spite of his immense "administrative resource" (that is the Russian expression for the ability to use the power of the state for your personal benefit), in spite of his "victory" with the Tomos , in spite of triggering the Kerch bridge incident, in spite of breaking all the remaining treaties with Russia, in spite of his control of the media and in spite of the (now admittedly lukewarm) support of the West, Poroshenko suffered a crushing defeat. Look at the only two regions Petro Poroshenko (i.e. the Nazis) actually won (in blue) and see how nicely they overlap with the rough historical contours of the Galicia region. But Poroshenko managed to even lose part of that to Iulia Tymoshenko! Bottom line: except for a minority of rabid hardcore Nazis in Galicia, the rest of the Ukraine hates the Poroshenko Ukronazi regime. We always knew that, but now we have the proof. ... ... ... Remember how Poroshenko promised peace in weeks, a full respect for the Russian language and prosperity for all? Well, all he delivered was chaos, insecurity, poverty, violence, a massive influx of Ukronazis from Canada and the USA and, above all, a completely hysterical, rabid, russophobia combined with abject groveling before the AngloZionist Empire. He also brought an absolutely unbelievable level of corruption, having personally doubled his net worth many times over. The legacy Ziomedia and the Ukropropaganda can say all they want, and they can try to ban the Russian media and Internet in the Ukraine. But the truth is that everybody in the Ukraine knows that the Ukraine went from being the richest Soviet Republic to the poorest country in Europe. In fact, there are quite a few African countries which are doing much better than the Ukraine. The truth is, and has been for several years now, that the Ukraine is a failed state and that there is absolutely no even vaguely plausible scenario in the foreseeable future in which the Ukraine could begin to recover. Hence this amazing result: short of the Galician Nazis, everyone else absolutely hates the regime in power. So Poroshenko's score is a humiliating defeat for all the Ukronazis. But not for Petro Poroshenko himself!
Petro Poroshenko scores a remarkable personal victory
Poroshenko's absolutely vital goal was to make it into the 2nd round. Had he failed to make it he would have had to immediately jump into an aircraft and leave the country (because the most likely victor of the Presidential election would have been Iulia Tymoshenko and we can be darn sure that she would immediately jail him and most of his cronies). In order to make it into the 2nd round, Poroshenko did not have to defeat Zelenskii, but only defeat Tymoshenko and that Poroshenko also succeeded in doing. Oh sure – it was thanks to a huge, massive fraud all over the country (especially in the easternmost and westernmost regions) and he beat her only by 2.5% but that is more than enough.

Besides, it is practically impossible to falsify an election and compensate for, say, a 15%-20% difference. But to cheat and change a result by less than 5% is much more doable. In fact, if we assume that a 5% fraud is well within the means of an outgoing President and billionaire, then we can also see that we will never know who really won . See here for an almost finished (99.68%) count for the top four contenders: While Zelenskii is untouchable and way ahead of everybody else, Poroshenko, Tymoshenko and Boiko are all within less than 5% of each other. Interesting, no?

Keep in mind that Boiko is the closest thing to a pro-Russian candidate and that just a few years ago he was virtually unknown. See for yourself: 2014 results vs 2018 poll Look at the stats for 2014: Poroshenko had 55% of the vote, Tymoshenko 8% and Boiko just about 0%. Please also notice that in the 2018 poll Tymoshenko is way ahead of Poroshenko while Boiko is not far behind.

As for Zelenskii, he scores just like Poroshenko. ... ... ... ...Zelenskii is just a glorified puppet and everybody in the Ukraine knows that his puppet-master is Igor Kolomoiskii who is waiting out the final outcome of the Presidential election safely hidden in, you guessed it, Israel. This is how the Tablet concludes:

The transformation wrought in Ukraine by the Maidan revolution has been an exhilarating roller coaster that has not bypassed Ukrainian Jewry, which is now in the midst of an exciting period of cultural revival paralleling that of the wider Ukrainian society, which is still just beginning to rediscover its own past and imagine an independent future. Whether this post-Soviet country will choose to elect an openly Jewish president, or a part-Jewish president, or continue with its current philo-Semitic president, the future of Ukraine's Jews would appear to be brighter than anyone might reasonably have imagined.
Where Poroshenko was the ultimate apparatchik Zelenskii is the ultimate outsider and just as the people of the USA did not vote "for" Trump as much as they voted "against" Hillary, so the people of the Ukraine did not really vote "for" Zelenskii, but "against" Poroshenko. In fact, Zelenskii does not have anything resembling a political program (only vague and nice sounding slogans) and he most certainly has no other political record other than being a standup comedian and actors in several (pretty good) satirical series. Frankly, it appears that Zelenskii was as stunned by his victory as Trump was by his.

Still, in theory, it is almost impossible for Poroshenko to win this one. Not only do all the other candidates hate Poroshenko way more than they would dislike Zelenskii, voters for Tymoshenko or Boiko are far more likely to vote for Zelenskii than for Poroshenko. This creates an extremely dangerous situation: Poroshenko can only win by a massive fraud . Now Tymoshenko did declare that the first round was stolen, but she decided not to appeal this officially. Furthermore, it is now apparent that Tymoshenko was ditched by most of her US supporters, something which she clearly did not expect and which came as a total shock to her, hence her stunned reaction to the announced figures. She has always been, and still is, a remarkably intelligent lady and a very calculating realist: she simply knows that an official rejection of the outcome from her would make no difference. But you can be sure that behind the scenes the interests Tymoshenko represents are now talking to the people of Kolomoiskii and that Poroshenko is fully aware of that. ... ... ...

Conclusion: a very interesting and very dangerous situation

Poroshenko is now truly cornered: he absolutely must win, or he must run. In order to win, his options are very limited

... ... ...

The infamous Minister of the Interior, Arsen Avakov, arguably currently the most powerful and dangerous man in the Ukraine, has made an most interesting statement about Zelenskii:

"A decent man from another world. From another plane. Ready to deal with problems, but at the same time recognizing that in many issues he is not fully competent. In my understanding, this means that he is ready to delegate authority. However, the question arises: can we – Ukrainian society – offer the quality of the elite, which can be entrusted with the implementation of such powers? After all, if he delegates authority to scoundrels – as it happens in some series of "Servants of the people" – it will be very bad for the country. Using expats is also not an option "( ) "He knows for sure that from point A it is necessary to come to point B, and I am ready to agree with it. But the problem is how to go this way. Often, if you go head-on, you will crash into a wall or break. Therefore, it is necessary to choose the right path – and here should work competent and honest specialists"

In plain English this simply means: Zelenskii has no personal power base, he will be a puppet, so he better offer me a good deal (" delegate authority "), or I will turn against him and, how knows, an unpredictable accident (" you will crash into a wall or break ") can easily happen. Shocking? Welcome to "Ukrainian thug politics"! Besides, if the Nazis decide to kill Zelenskii they can easily blame it on Russia. Either that, or on a "lone, deranged, gunman" which they can find in the thousands amongst the various Nazi death-squads.

Right now the Nazis are in a total panic, they are declaring that Zelenskii's victory is "Moscow's triumph", they say that Zelenskii will sell out everything Ukrainian and that he is a Putin agent. At the very least, they will now dig up as much dirt on Zelenskii as possible (whether real or manufactured).

... ... ...


AP , says: April 4, 2019 at 2:31 am GMT

Everybody in the Ukraine knows that the Ukraine went from being the richest Soviet Republic to the poorest country in Europe

In Soviet times Ukraine was was poorer than Russia, Belarus, and the Baltic Republics.

And Moldova is the poorest country in Europe.

https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.PCAP.CD?locations=UA-RU-BY-MD

Patricus , says: April 4, 2019 at 11:35 pm GMT
How come the nations geographically closest to Russia hate her the most?
Ilyana_Rozumova , says: April 6, 2019 at 10:01 pm GMT
Zelenski means green man and has Polish indication. So he is one of the holocaust survivors. (There are suspiciously too many of them these days.)

Timoshenko was virulently anti Russian but not so much anymore. All industrial plants in Ukraine were built by Russians making products for Russia, I have doubt that they can make anything that west needs. So Ukraine now is fully depended on agriculture. That is why Ukraine is going down.

Most votes went to Zelenski that is indication that Ukrainians now did loose their enthusiasm, and they are becoming more lethargic.

Ilyana_Rozumova , says: April 6, 2019 at 10:18 pm GMT
Galicia is multicultural area consisting mostly Polish, Slovak, Hungarian, Romanian, Russian, and some other nationals. There is no unity there, and never will be
Carlton Meyer , says: Website April 7, 2019 at 5:17 am GMT
@Ilyana_Rozumova Maybe Galicia should be returned to Poland? From my blog:

May 1, 2017 – Must Ukraine Return Volhynia?

Hillary Clinton's State Department funneled $5 billion to orchestrate a "revolution" to overthrow the elected President of Ukraine in 2014. (See my June 7, 2016 blog post for details.) Ukraine's President was ousted because he refused to support Ukraine joining the EU and NATO, and violence spread throughout Ukraine as CIA funded factions fought for power.

Crimea was part of Russia for over a century until it was administratively attached to Ukraine in 1954 by a Soviet premier to promote Soviet solidarity. Russians are the majority people in Crimea and Russian is the common language, but they were not consulted. In 2014, after years of Ukrainian political turmoil and an American coup in Kiev, Russia accepted a request by the people of Crimea to rejoin Russia after 94% voted in favor. (See my Aug 8, 2016 blog post for details.) Russians and Crimeans were puzzled by intense American opposition to this reannexation, and rightly concluded the Americans really wanted "NATO" military bases in strategic Crimea.

For those concerned about European borders and justice, they should address a truly outrageous annexation. In 1939, the Soviet Union invaded Poland and seized half of its land while Soviet police massacred 22,000 influential Polish POWs and civilians. This area was invaded by Germany two years later, which formed Ukrainian paramilitary units that murdered over 100,000 Poles during the war.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massacres_of_Poles_in_Volhynia_and_Eastern_Galicia

Entire Polish villages disappeared as Ukrainians massacred everyone to include women and children, who were buried in mass graves. After the war, the Polish regions of Volhynia and Eastern Galicia were formally annexed by Soviet Ukraine after 1.5 million Poles were forcibly deported. Over the next decade, another 1.5 million Poles were deported by Ukraine to ethically cleanse these regions (noted in yellow below).

The West did nothing about this brutality because it occurred within the powerful Soviet Union. However, that union broke up and Ukraine is weak and at odds with Russia. On July 22, 2016, the Parliament of Poland passed a resolution recognizing the massacres of ethnic Poles in Volhynia and Galicia as genocide. Poland is now part of NATO and American troops are based there. Thousands of Poles are still alive who were expelled from these regions. Homes and land were seized from millions of Poles. Ukrainian war criminals remain at large.

This raises several questions. If Poland demands a return of its territory or compensation for Poles, will powerful NATO support its demand? Will sanctions be imposed against Ukraine for this genocide and illegal seizure of Polish territory? Since Crimea was attached to Ukraine without a democratic vote, and the citizens of Crimea voted to rejoin Russia, should sanctions against Russia be removed?

Informed people know these issues will never be addressed because NATO does not exist to protect member states, but is a proxy arm of America's neocon empire trying to conquer the world. However, as Poland's military grows stronger and Ukraine struggles, this issue may arise, and crafty Russia may support a return of Poland's, Slovakia's, and Romania's seized territories!

Vojkan , says: April 7, 2019 at 7:16 am GMT
@Patricus

With the exception of the Baltic states, that simply isn't true of any nation from the former Soviet Union. Otherwise, the Russians couldn't have set up the Eurasian Customs Union which covers ~90% of the former USSR. There are even many Georgians working in Russia, in spite of the short war that was started by US dummy and former Georgian then Ukrainian, now stateless, Mikheil Saakashvili.

Vojkan , says: April 7, 2019 at 7:24 am GMT
I say the best solution for Ukraine would be to leave the nazis among themselves by giving independence to Galicia. If it's the price to pay to reintegrate Donbass, for the economy, and for peace and stability, it's worth it.
Vojkan , says: April 7, 2019 at 7:32 am GMT
@Carlton Meyer Poles would be crazy to take back Galicia. Just fence the nazi lunatics in with electrified barbed wire and leave them among themselves.
Macon Richardson , says: April 7, 2019 at 7:40 am GMT
@One Tribe Well, yes, in a fashion. I'm from the old South (Roosevelt was in his second term when I was born). Though I was educated at a fine old southern university and though I have lived a significant part of my adult life in Europe, Asia and Africa, I still revel in being called a redneck, a hick, a yokel, a cracker.

I embrace all of those terms because they only illustrate the ignorance of those who use them in a derogatory manner. I also embrace being a part of the goyim. Those who use those terms to wound only shows their fear, their own sense of inferiority to me, to us, Christian southerners both white and black.

jbwilson24 , says: April 7, 2019 at 9:01 am GMT
"Zionist praise for a Nazi" Poroshenko has Jewish ancestry, you dimwit. Go read the article in Forward called 'Poroshenko's Secret Jewish Roots'. Ukraine has three Jewish men in a row as prime minister. How interesting, given their rather low population percentage.
Ilyana_Rozumova , says: April 7, 2019 at 9:53 am GMT
@Carlton Meyer Largest part of Galicia did belong to Slovakia. To Poland did belong only Lvov and surrounding area.
(Although most populated.)
Anon [424] Disclaimer , says: April 7, 2019 at 10:47 am GMT
@Patricus Ask your latinamericans neighbours how much they love the USA
mikemikev , says: April 7, 2019 at 1:01 pm GMT
@jbwilson24

Yes they're a strange type of Nazi to install a Jewish leader. "Nazism" in most people's minds is synonymous with anti-Jewism. Are they that?

Rich , says: April 7, 2019 at 2:24 pm GMT
Nazi, Nazi, Nazi. Do these guys ever stop? It reminds me of the old Jews in Queens, NY, every time they got into a disagreement with anyone, they yelled "Nazi". Even the regular Jews got sick of it. The Ukrainians have a long history of nationalist thinkers, opposed to Russian domination. Like the Finns, the Ukrainian patriots may have taken German support in WW2, but that doesn't make the "Nazis". The National Socialists were a unique party to the Germany of the 1930s, would you call Italian Fascists "Nazis"?
Oscar Peterson , says: April 7, 2019 at 2:39 pm GMT
@Patricus Is that a serious question?

Ask yourself why, in general, one country/nation hates another? It's because of attempts at invasion and domination. And historically, who is going to invade/dominate you? Those geographically closest obviously. Sure, there are exceptions to this–the Mongol Empire, the Arab Caliphate, and most strikingly, the Western invasion of well, everywhere in the 16th-20th centuries.

But in most of the world most of the time for most of human existence, it's the guy next door who is going to screw you and whom you in turn will screw.

Irish-English. German-French. Serb-Croat. Arab-Persian. Vietnamese-Cambodian. Tutsi-Hutu. Iroquois-Algonkian. Navajo-Hopi.

So why would you be surprised?

One commenter suggested a comparison with Latin American attitudes towards the US. This is partly true, but there are several differences. First, national identity is, on the whole, relatively weak in New World. What does it really mean to be a Honduran? Secondly, the main US security mechanism in the Western Hemisphere has been its navy which means relatively less direct occupation and repression of places like Mexico. Russia, invaded from East and West, has always sought security zones that inevitably mean occupation and subjugation. Third, US hegemonism has only really gotten going over the last 125 years, so it hasn't had as much time to antagonize its neighbors, and we had the good fortune of ravaging most of the locals near at hand with the small pox, etc that we brought along with us.

These factors combine to explain why the hatred quotient towards Russia by its neighbors is higher than that towards the US.

Wally , says: April 7, 2019 at 2:49 pm GMT
@Ilyana_Rozumova said:

"Zelenski means green man and has Polish indication. So he is one of the holocaust survivors. (There are suspiciously too many of them these days.)"

– The endless numbers of "survivors" are especially amazing since it's claimed that 'the Germans tried to kill every Jew they could get their hands on.'

... ... ...

Oscar Peterson , says: April 7, 2019 at 2:51 pm GMT
@Ilyana_Rozumova

Galicia is multicultural area consisting mostly Polish, Slovak, Hungarian, Romanian, Russian, and some other nationals. There is no unity there, and never will be.

Then why do they seem to behave politically in ways that set them apart from all those around them?

Oscar Peterson , says: April 7, 2019 at 2:54 pm GMT
@Ilyana_Rozumova

Largest part of Galicia did belong to Slovakia.

Really? I never thought of Slovaks as owning much of anything–not even Slovakia historically. Hungarians, Austrians, Czechs all dominated Slovakia. Could you expand on your notion of the majority of Galicia belonging to Slovakia?

Beckow , says: April 7, 2019 at 3:29 pm GMT
When a sitting president anywhere in the world runs for re-election and gets 15%, the decent thing is to step aside. It doesn't matter how many other candidates run, there could be hundreds – what matters is that 85% of people voted against Porky as their first choice .

He has been in the office for 5 years and 85% of people want someone else. How much clearer could this be? This was a massive vote of no-confidence by Ukrainians. If Porky squeezes or cheats his way into staying as president, he is asking for trouble – it is not sustainable and Washington knows it.

Galicia and Donbas also clearly cannot coexist in the same non-federated state, they are on opposite sides.

Economy: is it not going to get better. The bad news have been pushed after the elections, and in 2020 two things will happen:

Kiev will have to start paying back at least some of the Western loans Income from gas transit will be gone (and possibly the gas itself).

That takes away 3-5% of the Ukrainian economy. If Russia piles on and restricts more trade, or limits remittances, there will inevitably by a recession in Ukraine. The circus is about to re-start, no wonder the clowns are renting stadiums. But at some point the distractions will cease to distract – and then the damn reality will hit even harder

annamaria , says: April 7, 2019 at 4:41 pm GMT
@Vojkan The Poles deserve the ziocon-"renovated" & "liberated" Galicia festering with the active Banderites. Look how the Poles have been treating the monuments to the fallen Soviet soldiers. Let the Poles enjoy their passionate brotherly love with the ZUSA.

As Saker writes,

Fundamentally, Nazis and Zionists are twin brothers, even if deep down they hate (and often admire!) each other.

If there is something positive about Maidan regime change, it is the revelation of the ziocons active role in the revival of neo-Nazism in Ukraine. The revelation is a death blow to the holo-biz profiteering schema.

Whether the Jewish State's provisions of Israel-made ammunition to the neo-Nazis or the ADL & Simon Wiesenthal Center support for the neo-Nazi (see the zionists scandalous behavior re the Conyers' Amendment), the zionists did indeed come out (again!) as the "twin brothers" of the worsts among Nazis.

https://portside.org/2014-11-20/how-israel-lobby-protected-ukrainian-neo-nazis

AnonFromTN , says: April 7, 2019 at 4:51 pm GMT
I disagree that Porky is dumb. He successfully fleeced the whole country, including competing oligarchs, for 5 years. Dumb are the people who still support him. Ukrainians voting for Porky are like chickens voting for Colonel Sanders. But some morons never learn.

Porky might be fond of his drink. He showed up seriously inebriated several times publicly, but he wouldn't be able to steal hundreds of millions consistently while being drunk all the time. Saakashvili (admittedly, hardly a reliable source of info) said that Porky ran the country into the ground being sober. Well, Porky never cared about the country, all he is interested in is the trough. That's why he wants five more years of stealing, and he is reluctant to yield his place at the trough to someone else.

Most importantly, the masters are OK with it. Imperial gauleiter of Ukraine Volker has already voiced his support for Porky. Porky would likely be more obedient than anyone else: he can be blackmailed, as he has already earned gallows (or life in prison in countries that don't have death penalty). So, the masters have already chosen their favorite puppet. We'll see on April 21st how much influence they have.

I am not saying that Zelensky (and his puppet master Kolomoisky) won't do, but from masters' point of view old clown is apparently preferable to the new one.

Robjil , says: April 7, 2019 at 5:30 pm GMT
@Oscar Peterson Transcarpathia is a long extension of Slovakia. It was taken from Czechoslovakia after WWII and given to Soviet Ukraine. The people of this region never thought of themselves as Ukrainian or Galician but as Rusyns or Ruthenians. Transcarpathia was mainly given to Soviet Union because it is a good gateway for tanks into Eastern Europe such as the case for Hungary in 1956 and Czechoslovakia in 1968. This region also has a large Hungarian population, since Hungary used to rule it in the Austro-Hungarian empire times.
Beckow , says: April 7, 2019 at 6:44 pm GMT
@AnonFromTN

old clown is apparently preferable to the new one

For some he is preferable, he is more reliable. Anytime a new clown is elevated, there is some unpredictability. Bosses hate surprises.

On the other hand, the first step when things don't go well, is to rotate the clowns. We got Macron, the German doppelganger for Merkel, elites tried Renzi in Italy, so maybe Zelinsky could work. He is a complete tabula rasa, non-entity, that wouldn't know how to find the executive washroom. At a minimum, he would buy some time. Next they can still try Tymoshenko. This will not get resolved through the political process.

AnonFromTN , says: April 7, 2019 at 8:03 pm GMT
@Beckow

Next they can still try Tymoshenko. This will not get resolved through the political process.

Why not? If the masters allow new clown to win, Gas princess can be made the speaker of the Rada . Then an unfortunate accident can be easily arranged, and she becomes next successor perfectly legally. The masters do these things pretty often: remember Ulof Palme or Aldo Moro. Zelensky can be got rid of the same way, if the masters decide that it's to their benefit.

Beckow , says: April 7, 2019 at 8:51 pm GMT
@AnonFromTN That's a possible scenario. But in that part of the world, scenarios never play out the way they are planned.

I am not sure what is left to be gained in Ukraine, it is all costs and very few benefits. That's what happens when the layered lying becomes so convoluted that the masters lose track of the objectives.

They wanted Crimea (actually Russia out of Crimea bases, NATO in) – that failed. Everything else were distractions, false promises, and payoffs to locals. A normal master would accept the defeat, take his toys home, and wait for the next time. The post-modern Washingtonians instead pretend that the sweet talk was real , try for silly, secondary objectives (how about a few missiles on the Russian border? that would work out great), or refuse to accept the obvious. Making the whole fiasco more costly.

ploni almoni , says: April 7, 2019 at 8:56 pm GMT
@Patricus America is not so close.
AnonFromTN , says: April 7, 2019 at 9:45 pm GMT
@Beckow

The only reason they didn't abandon failed Ukrainian project I can see is that from imperial standpoint the more irritants you create for Russia, the better. Current Ukraine is an irritant. When its further disintegrates and becomes a huge Somalia on Russian doorstep, it would become an even grater irritant. Of course, Poles would suffer, too, but when did the masters take aborigines into account?

As to a few missiles on Russian border, they already have that in Baltic vaudeville states, which are much closer to Moscow and especially Sankt Petersburg then Zhmerinka.

Then again, I am looking at it rationally, whereas Washington politburo is getting even less rational that the Soviet one under Brezhnev.

annamaria , says: April 7, 2019 at 10:01 pm GMT
@AnonFromTN Who is Kurt Volker? https://mronline.org/2018/09/20/natos-fascist-wedge-in-ukraine/

In April this year [2018] the U.S. supplied Javelin anti-tank missiles to Ukraine and in May 2018 the U.S. Congress approved $250m of military funding, specifically including deliveries of lethal weaponry.

President Donald Trump's special envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker (a neocon, acolyte of senator John McCain, previously appointed by George Bush as U.S. ambassador to NATO) announced further U.S. arms supplies would follow, boasting of rising anti-Russian sentiment in Ukraine.

https://therealnews.com/stories/max-blumenthal-us-is-arming-neo-nazis-in-ukraine

Kurt Volker, similar to the deceased McCain, is a loyal servant to ziocons and war profiteers. Actually, Volker is a war profiteer himself.

The US's envoy to Ukraine, Kurt Volker, who is connected to Raytheon, is in favor of this arms shipment, and it's inevitable that it [arms shipment] will reach Azov [Battalion]

Azov Battalion functions in a lot of ways like ISIS has in Syria and Iraq Azov camps with an enormous trove of weapons .. we are talking about hundreds of pounds of C4 explosives, automatic weapons and grenade launchers.

Azov's own website demonstrates that US military trainers have visited Azov in the field to train and exchange logistical information. They appeared in uniform with Azov Battalion members who were wearing the wolf's angel patch, which is a Nazi SS symbol, a runic neo-Nazi symbol on their arm. This is just a scandalous spectacle. Not only that, contracts have been revealed showing that the Texas-based AirTronic arms company has produced PSRL-1 grenade launchers that were actually authorized under this watch of the State Department and delivered directly into the hands of the Azov Battalion. The US has armed Azov.

Again, what the ADL has been squeaking about -- that there are too many Holo-biz Deniers? -- The zionists have been in cahoots with the neo-Nazi throughout the whole State Dept. criminal enterprise in Ukraine. The Kagans clan of holo-biz survivors and other pro-Nazi Jewish activists such as Gershman (NED) and Foxman (ADL) have been the moving force towards banderization of Ukraine (Babij Yar, ADL?).

None of them cares about the memory of WWII victims the zionists only care about profits. As for Kurt Volker, he is with zionists in the search for mega-profit. He is a regular opportunist devoid of dignity.

annamaria , says: April 7, 2019 at 10:24 pm GMT
Kurt Volker: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kurt_Volker

Volker served on the staff of Senator John McCain from 1997 to 1998. He was appointed United States Permanent Representative to NATO in July 2008 by President George W. Bush.

Volker went into the private sector in 2009, becoming an independent director at The Wall Street Fund Inc. He was a member of the board of directors at Capital Guardian Funds Trust Volker was also an independent director at Evercore Wealth Management Macro Opportunity Fund

Volker served as a senior advisor at McLarty Associates, a global consulting firm. In 2011, he joined BGR Group, a Washington-based lobbying firm and investment bank

He has been a Senior Fellow at the Center for Transatlantic Relations, Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies since September 2009, and a Senior Advisor at the Atlantic Council since October 2009. [Atlantic Council has been a safe harbor for the rabidly Russophobic Elliot Higgins and Dmitri Alperovich of Russia-gate fame, https://consortiumnews.com/2019/01/29/how-russia-gate-rationalizes-censorship/ )

Kurt Volker, a certified war profiteer and money manager using his position as a government employee for making money on lobbying What can be wrong with his judgements?

Tedx , says: April 7, 2019 at 11:02 pm GMT
Special Education comment for the fluoride-lobotomized vegetables, known internationally as AMERICANS: Petro Poroshenko, described in this article as the figurehead of rhe "Nazis" is a Jew. When the US sponsored the coup in the Ukraine, both the democratically elected President and Prime Minister were replaced by Jews.

The alleged Neo-Nazis, "Right Sector" were unemployed punks led by Israeli mercenaries, virtually unchallenged by effectively bribed, Ukrainian military commanders.

If Adolf Hitler were alive today and controlled the Ukraine, he would order that -- without exception -- every member of Right Sector be either euthanized or sterilized to prevent the Right Sector Stupid Gene to infect the Aryan Race.

Anyone or any organization that refers to the Jewish president of the Ukraine and his followers as "Nazis" are obviously Zionist propaganda agents misleading the mentally feeble.

Beckow , says: April 8, 2019 at 12:01 am GMT
@AnonFromTN When we were kids we would climb into neighbours' gardens to steal cherries. You climb up a tree, break a few branches, take the cherries. No guilt. Every kid feels ' exceptional , it is something that comes naturally to all 12-year olds.

The weird thing about modern Washingtonians is that they never outgrew that infantile stage. They still feel 'exceptional', taking other people's stuff is ok. Why wouldn't be ? If one is exceptional, he is by definition better than others, and the others really have no rights, except the ones given to them by the exceptional people.

When a thieving raid by the exceptional people is blocked – as in Crimea – it leaves no good options. Should one admit that they were about to take the 'stuff' (the Sebastopol bases), lost out, and simply retreat? No, it is hard to stay exceptional when losing. Image and perceptions are everything in Washington.

Should they escalate and try to storm Crimea to get what they want and deserve? Again, no, because exceptional people can't risk hurt or injury, they are too precious, they are after all 'exceptional'.

Should they send their decidedly unexceptional underlings to storm Crimea? Well, that would be ideal, but the underlings are too stupid to even get into the garden, and climbing a tree is way beyond their ability. One can train them, send them ladders – but everyone knows that they will never do it.

That leaves the least bad option of sticking around to ' irritate ' Russia. There is not much gain in it, it gets old very quickly, it is also costly and even dangerous. But it preserves the image of 'exceptional' people, it can be spun around for different perceptions, and it makes the local allies less antsy and less likely to run away with their loot. Other than that it achieves nothing.

That's where we are: a bunch of unserious morons sitting in a car parked outside the cherry orchard, scared to go in, scared to leave, hoping that nobody notices, and still craving the sweet cherries without even being able to admit that's what they are there for.

Fidelios Automata , says: April 8, 2019 at 3:14 am GMT
@Tedx It's no contradiction at all. Israels have been behaving very much like Nazis toward the Palestinians in the occupied territories.

[Apr 09, 2019] The USA increased trade surplus with Ukraine to $1.13 Billion. Considering Ukraine is impoverished and living on handout that's quite an achievement.

Apr 09, 2019 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

For its part, the United States insists on running Ukraine, appointing a special envoy – Kurt Volker – to preserve its feeling of international importance after it was pointedly left out of the Normandy Format; Meddlers R Us; we don't need no steenking invitations.

A glance over trade statistics suggests this was a wise choice for the Exceptional Nation – the year before the Glorious Maidan, Revolution of Dignity, the USA did around $3 Billion worth of trade with Ukraine, selling it $1.92 Billion worth of goods and services, and buying $1.03 Billion worth of goods and services from it, posting an American trade surplus of $888 Million. Last year the USA did around $4 Billion worth of trade with Ukraine, selling it $2.46 Billion in goods and services, and buying $1.35 Billion worth of goods and services from it, handsomely increasing the American trade surplus to $1.13 Billion. Considering Ukraine is impoverished and living on handouts, while the per-capita GDP has fallen by more than 6% despite the country having lost about 3 million people (Ukraine's population today is almost exactly what it was in 1960), that's quite an achievement.

[Apr 09, 2019] Poroshenko's electoral appeal is rooted in the notion of 'better the devil you know'

Notable quotes:
"... Poroshenko's electoral appeal is rooted in the notion of 'better the devil you know' and his presidential campaign rests on his ability to convince voters that he is the lesser of all available evils." ..."
"... Let me put my cards on the table here – the current political class in Washington, irrespective of party affiliation and almost without exception, is so debauched and untethered that it enthusiastically supports the election of unabashed criminals where their election serves American foreign-policy goals. Is it too late to be astounded? Yes, it is. Ukraine is lightly chided for its rampant corruption, while Russia is held up to universal scorn because Putin. ..."
Apr 09, 2019 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Poroshenko's electoral appeal is rooted in the notion of 'better the devil you know' and his presidential campaign rests on his ability to convince voters that he is the lesser of all available evils."

Poroshenko might have an uphill battle convincing his own voters of that reality, but he has plainly gone down a treat in Washington.

Let me put my cards on the table here – the current political class in Washington, irrespective of party affiliation and almost without exception, is so debauched and untethered that it enthusiastically supports the election of unabashed criminals where their election serves American foreign-policy goals. Is it too late to be astounded? Yes, it is. Ukraine is lightly chided for its rampant corruption, while Russia is held up to universal scorn because Putin.

Cortes March 31, 2019 at 4:49 pm

Majestic, Mark.

Thanks once more. Ideally the Fire [Gas] Witch, Yulia, would be back as the plaything of the Crimson King

"And smiles as the puppets dance in the court of the Crimson King."

Mark Chapman March 31, 2019 at 4:59 pm
"Historically and etymologically, a "crimson king" was any monarch during whose reign there was civil unrest and copious bloodshed."

Except for the gender, she qualifies in advance.

Mark Chapman April 1, 2019 at 4:42 am
Well, Poroshenko would certainly need to explain how he could win in the second round against a candidate who polled twice the vote as he did in the first round. But Poroshenko owns or controls a lot of media, and it's all about pushing a narrative. Ukrainians were satisfied, the story will go, that Poroshenko learned his lesson from being rebuked in the first round; he is sorry, and humbled, and will turn over a new leaf.

Meanwhile (still the story), many Ukrainians are waking up to the shock of what they did, and are suffering buyers remorse, bla, bla. He only needs to squeak out a narrow win when it's down to just he and Zelinskiy, and the west will immediately hoot that democracy has spoken, my, what an exciting ride, and Zelinskiy will fade back into political obscurity.

Jen April 1, 2019 at 1:53 pm
Actually Peter Dickinson is just one of several supposed "experts" and "observers" at The Atlantic Council of Ukraine's political scene who have expressed opinions that basically exonerate Poroshenko as godfather of a group of hucksters smuggling Russian weapons and military spare parts into Ukraine and then charging the Ukrainian government hefty prices for them. John Herbst thinks it's great that the Banderites got weapons from Russia and the only thing they did wrong was take a hefty personal cut from the sale; never mind that they broke some other laws, let's say, laws that forbid Ukraine from purchasing anything from Russia because Russia is under US / EU sanctions. Other opinions suggest that Poroshenko should just distance himself from the people involved in the scandal because the most important thing is to lead Ukraine as far away from Russia as possible – as if it is that easy for Poroshenko to do, because if he did, his associates in the scandal will squeal on him.

It's hilarious reading those "opinions" and see how far those Atlantic Council people are trying to excuse Poroshenko by blaming the journalists for bringing up the story or insinuating that Tymoshenko or the Kremlin is trying to bring Poroshenko down.

Moscow Exile April 1, 2019 at 8:52 pm
Dejevsky in today's Independent:

Comedian Volodymyr Zelensky may have played Ukraine's president on TV – but could he really run the country?

I shall paste her article below as I have access beyond the pay-wall to a limited number of articles published in that rag:

Some in Ukraine may feel that April Fool's Day 2019 started a few hours early, at 8pm the previous evening to be precise, when the polls in the first round of the country's presidential election closed and the exit polls showed an actor who plays a fictional president beating the real president into second place by a margin of almost two to one.

Official results give Volodymyr Zelensky (the actor) around 30 per cent of the vote, compared with 16 per cent for president Petro Poroshenko. From a field of 39 – yes, 39 – presidential hopefuls, it will be these two heading into the run-off on 21 April.

Yulia Tymoshenko – the only woman anywhere near the top 10 and the most recognisable face for many outside Ukraine as "la pasionaria" of the 2004 Orange Revolution, had led when the campaign began last December, but was knocked into third place. Mercifully, the 3 percentage point margin between her and Poroshenko is probably clear enough to pre-empt any challenge or dispute.

The question now facing the more than half of Ukraine's 35 million electorate who voted for neither Zelensky nor Poroshenko on Sunday is which of the two to choose in three weeks' time – and for the rest whether to stick with their original choice.

It would be fair to say that opinions about Zelensky are sharply divided. On the one hand are those who argue that anything has to be better than the glacial pace of change and endemic corruption over which Poroshenko has presided.

They include many young people who have joined what might be described as the pan-European anti-politics tendency that brought Italy's current government to power. Zelensky and his team of largely young volunteers ran a welcoming and modern campaign that took on a life of its own as – rather like Jeremy Corbyn's 2017 campaign in the UK – supporters spread the word on social media.

At the same time, there are many – perhaps over-represented among highly educated professional Ukrainians at home and abroad – who view Zelensky with trepidation and suspicion as just another populist, capitalising on his fame in another sphere. Their fear – tinged with condescension – is that he could endanger the relative stability Poroshenko has brought after the tumult of the Euromaidan (a wave of demonstrations) five years ago.

The size of Zelensky's first-round vote, however, and its geographical spread – he managed to appeal to Russian-speakers in the eastern areas bordering the war zone as well as those in central and southern Ukraine – have led even doubters to feel that this election is now his to lose. Poroshenko, however, should not be written off too soon. It is not just fear of the unknown that could make the run-off very close; there are other reasons why Poroshenko could yet prevail.

One is that, although Zelensky comes across well when he appears on his own terms – at the comedy shows he preferred to conventional political rallies – he performed poorly in the few television interviews he gave, appearing out of his depth and using language that suggested a rather unreconstructed view of women.

It had been expected that one or more formal television debates might test his mettle, but the plan for first-round debates foundered when Poroshenko and Zelensky both declined to take part, and it now appears there may be no second-round debate either. With the contest now reduced to two, however, this is bound to concentrate minds.

Another is the question of Zelensky's funding. Some suspect that the hand (and money) of the exiled businessman/oligarch, Ihor Kolomoisky, is behind him. Zelensky denies that he depends on anyone, and some close to the campaign say that associates of Kolomoisky are at best on the outer fringe of the campaign. But the suspicion persists, and when Poroshenko spoke of "populists" and "puppets" in his campaign speeches, the inference was clear.

Poroshenko's first-round campaign pitch – a responsible leader whose video stresses the importance of the nation, the army and the Church – could have more resonance now that it will be pitted directly against what could seem a leap into the unknown with Zelensky. Then again, just looking at the way the two handled the provisional first-round results on the night – Poroshenko looking exhausted and just a little jaded, and Zelensky bouncing around, smiling, with a ready word for the media and glad-handing his supporters, it was tempting to imagine a new Ukraine already eclipsing the old.

But – to put it at its most basic – will Zelensky be "allowed" to win? While there have been some reports of polling violations on Sunday, the first round appears to have been an admirably clean and open election to the point where a complete outsider was not only able to stake a claim to the country's top job, but to reach the run-off. And the outside attempts to influence the poll (by Russia and the west), so apparent in previous elections, were almost not in evidence.

With the presidency itself now at stake, however, and the confusion of a ballot paper with 39 candidates safely in the past, could the old ways make a comeback? Might there be a sudden upsurge of attempts to influence the campaign from the outside: new money, hacking, dirty tricks,"Kompromat"? Is there a "deep state" that could stop Zelensky?

Leaving aside the imponderable, there are perhaps three factors to watch over the three weeks. The first is whether any of the other first-round candidates who obtained more than a handful of votes will endorse – or do any deal with either of the candidates. And if they did – if Timoshenko, for instance, or Yuriy Boyko, the pro-Russia candidate, backed Zelensky – would it have a positive or negative effect on his campaign? One key broker could be the anti-corruption candidate, Anatoliy Hrytsenko, who came fifth.

The second is how far Zelensky can convince his critics that he could actually do the job. Members of his team told me that he was consulting widely and taking the prospect very seriously and he has attracted at least two past ministers to his team. The fluidity of Ukraine's political parties also means that not having a developed party of his own might not be a huge liability in parliament, as MPs might well flock to a winner. Parliamentary elections later in the year could do the rest.

His manifesto is also more specific than his detractors say: it includes an end to immunity from prosecution for MPs and government officials; "not a battle, but the defeat, of corruption", referendums on important state issues, including possible membership of Nato, talks with Russia to end the fighting in eastern Ukraine, tax breaks for entrepreneurs, a drive to introduce technology in schools, higher pay for the military.

But the biggest question could be this: how far will voters distinguish between Zelensky the real-life candidate and the fictional schoolmaster-turned-president whose secretly taped anti-corruption rant propelled him to the top job?

By using the title of the series Servant of the People as his campaign slogan, and the name of his embryonic political party, Zelensky could be accused of encouraging the confusion. And the fictional president comes with an attitude and an almost naive agenda that is the stuff of many a Ukrainian's dreams. He is principled, quizzical, supports the "little man" and has the welfare of his people at heart. The less voters are able, or choose, to distinguish the two, the better Zelensky's chances of leading the real Ukraine.

Note how, in the extract below, Dejevsky displays her lack of objectivity in the way she regards the Ukraine from her oh-so-liberal point of view and, thereby, morally castigating the dump after having right at the top her article mentioned that Tymoshenko was "the only woman anywhere near the top 10":

although Zelensky comes across well when he appears on his own terms – at the comedy shows he preferred to conventional political rallies – he performed poorly in the few television interviews he gave, appearing out of his depth and using language that suggested a rather unreconstructed view of women .

[my stress]

Yes, that will really turn the Yukies against him, I am sure, Ms Dejevsky!

A filthy mysogynist!

How shocking!!!

One could not possibly cast one's vote for such a monster!

And what's with this criticism of both Zelensky and Poroshenko's refusal to have a televised debate?

True, they hold such debates in US presidential elections as part of the "real democracy" show in the "exceptional nation", but if other countries shy from similar performances, is that so bad, so "undemocratic"?

And one comment, so far to the article, from a frequent troll at the Independent who likes to add ПТН X̆ЛО (abbreviation for the Russian "Putin is a prick) just to show how smart he is:

As usual no mention of any Russian monkey business so I guess Mary is still angling for the dacha near Moscow.

I have a dacha near Moscow, wanker! Does that mean I am a tool of the Kremlin?

How about digging up the evidence for "Russian monkey business" and presenting it yourself, arsehole, if you are so sure that such interference by Russia in Banderastan politics exists?

[Apr 04, 2019] avu o lu just compared Turkey to Ukraine, saying Ukraine let itself be told it had to decide between West and Russia, and look what happened; Turkey cannot be forced into same choice

Turkey vs Ukraine.
Notable quotes:
"... Well, since 2002, people made a lot about the neo-cons being heavily influenced by Leo Strauss. I think this is only part of it. These people seem to me to be just as heavily influenced by George Berekeley: things don't really exist, there's no causation, therefore there's no consequences to one's own actions. ..."
"... "Corruption cannot lead to prosperity." Nor can it field a competent military with functional weapon systems. ..."
"... The comments at the end about how Turkey can maintain good relations with NATO and at the same time develop cooperation with Russia is clearly nonsense. NATO whole reason for existence now is as an anti-Russia military alliance. Pence is absolutely right about that ... you cannot be a member of NATO and develop close cooperation with Russia. ..."
Apr 04, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org
karlof1 , Apr 4, 2019 2:06:15 PM | link

Tweeting direct from NATO meeting provides inside details not found in press articles, particularly the NATO talking-point ending. IMO, the tweeter Mehta was right to highlight this exchange:

"Bennan: Do you know what the US policy in syria is?
"Çavuşoğlu: No, and this is the problem.

"He points to different statements from WH, Pentagon, CENTCOM, State. 'There is no clear strategy. This is the problem.'"

Further on:

"Wow. Çavuşoğlu just compared Turkey to Ukraine, saying Ukraine let itself be told it had to decide between West and Russia, and look what happened; Turkey cannot be forced into same choice."

Please take the few minutes to read.


vk , Apr 4, 2019 2:07:04 PM | link

Pence threat is also stupid as there is no mechanism to expulse any member from NATO. NATO members can only leave voluntarily.

Since when this stopped the USA?

The reason Turkey won't exit NATO are many. Among them:

1) Turkey's economy is in meltdown. It only didn't collapse yesterday because, luckily, Turkey has only "burnt" one third of its Dollar reserves. For comparison, the usurper government which toppled Dilma Rousseff burnt almost 50% of Brazil's then gigantic US$ 795 billion -- only to try to keep interest at a staggering 9.5% rate. Lucky for the Turkish people, Erdogan survived the 2016 coup, but he was already trounced in the three main cities and those reserves won't last forever. Time is in favor of the Americans in this case;

2) Contrary to, e.g. China and Russia, Turkey has a strong pro-USA political-popular base. It really doesn't need to topple Erdogan through a violent coup (Obama made an unforced error in 2016) in order to install a puppet government in Turkey;

3) The USA has the IMF. The IMF is the only institution which can do regime change and nobody will question. Erdogan is, for now, refusing its "aid", but he's just one man. That means that, even if Turkey remains with an Islamist (Ottomanist) or end up electing a neutral government, the Americans will still be capable of exerting formidable pressure;

4)Turkey is, perhaps, the geostrategically most important individual country for NATO. If the Americans still dream of defeating and balkanizing Russia through a hot war, then the path will go through Turkey and the Bosphorus. It is not on rogue POTUS or Veep who will change that.

Clueless Joe , Apr 4, 2019 3:10:41 PM | link
"But current American elites have no concept of own actions having consequences."

Well, since 2002, people made a lot about the neo-cons being heavily influenced by Leo Strauss. I think this is only part of it. These people seem to me to be just as heavily influenced by George Berekeley: things don't really exist, there's no causation, therefore there's no consequences to one's own actions.

karlof1 , Apr 4, 2019 3:50:45 PM | link

Bolton unwittingly utters truism but has no idea that it applies to him and the Outlaw US Empire billions of times over: "Corruption cannot lead to prosperity." Nor can it field a competent military with functional weapon systems.

Another OT note, this one about the technical development of generation 6 military aircraft, Hypersonic and hydrogen fueled and most likely piloted by droids or remotely given speed and G-forces.

Harry Law , Apr 4, 2019 4:22:04 PM | link
The US are threatening friend and foe alike, whereas those sanctions against their foe's are real, sanctions against NATO members can be counterproductive, for instance Germany being told to stop Nord Stream 2 and increase its contributions to NATO, 2% of Germany's GDP [4 trillion dollars] is an enormous amount of money to protect against a non existent enemy.

The time will come when the US will be ignored, then, unless the US acts on those threats, its own credibility will be called into question, then the only way is down.

Christian J Chuba , Apr 4, 2019 6:37:15 PM | link
BUT What about the Saudi Model???

Whenever anyone suggests that we should stop supplying bombs and military equipment to the Saudis who are murdering Yemenis, moralists like Mike Pence, Pompeo, and the rest of the religious right thunder, 'THEY WILL BUY ARMS FROM THE ROOOSHINS!'

So it is quite funny that they are willing to play hardball with the Turks.

SteveK9 , Apr 4, 2019 8:20:30 PM | link
S @22

The comments at the end about how Turkey can maintain good relations with NATO and at the same time develop cooperation with Russia is clearly nonsense. NATO whole reason for existence now is as an anti-Russia military alliance. Pence is absolutely right about that ... you cannot be a member of NATO and develop close cooperation with Russia.

At least in the eyes of NATO (i.e. the US) Russia is the enemy.

[Apr 04, 2019] You may remember Feltman as Victoria Kagan Nuland s United Nations contact in the subversion of Ukraine

Apr 04, 2019 | www.unz.com

Grace Poole , says:

In comments at a 2007 hearing before the State Department subcommittee for ‘International Religious Freedom’, Iran was singled out for special attention and Jeff Feltman testified that State Department was funding NGOs that “could not be named for their own protection.”

These NGOs were “promoting democratic values” and aiding the Iranian people to liberate themselves.”

You may remember Feltman as Victoria Kagan Nuland’s United Nations contact in the subversion of Ukraine, and as the man Hillary Clinton’s State Department assigned to “manage” the “Arab Spring” that erupted in Tunisia.

[Apr 02, 2019] Poroshenko was just a US marionette which helped to loot the country and impoverish Ukrainian people

Under neoliberalism any regime change is necessary followed by an economic rape. That was the case with the USSR in 1991, that was the case in Ukraine in 2014. Only the size and length of the looting varies depending of the strength of new government. Both the size and the length is maximal if in power are marionette like Yeltsin or Yatsenyuk/Poroshenko.
Saying "Beware of Greeks bearing gifts" now should sound as "Beware of Americans who bring you color revolutions." They bring the economic rape (aka "Disaster capitalism") as the second phase. That's the nature of neocolonialism -- now you do not need to occupy the country. It's enough to make it a debt slave using IMF and install compradors to endure the low of money and continuing impoverishment of the population.
With such crooked and greedy friends as Biden and Kerry and their narcoaddicts sons you do not need enemies. But the main danger are not individual sharks but Western financial institutions like IMF and World bank. Those convert countries into debt slaves and that means permanently low standard (Central African in case of Ukraine, something like $2 a day) of living for generations to come.
What is interesting is that unlike say German nationalists in 30th, the Ukrainian nationalists proved to be completly useless in defending the Ukraine from looting. They actually serves as supplementary tool of the same looting.
The standard of living of Ukrainians dropped 2-3 times since 2014. How pensioners survive, on $50 a month pension I simply do not understand. In any case Neoliberalism proved to be very effecting is keeping "developing" nations economic growth down and converting them into debt slaves. The fact that Biden use loans as a tool of extortion (as in threat to cancel one billion loan) to close criminal investigation of his sons company is just an icing on the cake. Poroshenko and his camarilla should be tried in the court of law for his corruption and pandering to the Western sharks, who were happy to steal from Ukraine as much as then can.
To pay $166K a month for Biden's son cocaine is way too much to such impoverished country as Ukraine.
Notable quotes:
"... "I said, ' You're not getting the billion .' I'm going to be leaving here in, I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said: ' I'm leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you're not getting the money, '" bragged Biden, recalling the conversation with Poroshenko. ..."
"... " Well, son of a bitch, he got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid at the time," Biden said at the Council on Foreign Relations event - while insisting that former president Obama was complicit in the threat. ..."
"... The prosecutor he got fired was leading a wide-ranging corruption probe into the natural gas firm Burisma Holdings that employed Biden's younger son, Hunter, as a board member. ..."
"... U.S. banking records show Hunter Biden's American-based firm, Rosemont Seneca Partners LLC, received regular transfers into one of its accounts -- usually more than $166,000 a month -- from Burisma from spring 2014 through fall 2015, during a period when Vice President Biden was the main U.S. official dealing with Ukraine and its tense relations with Russia. - The Hill ..."
"... And before he was fired, Shokin says he had made "specific plans" for the investigation - including "interrogations and other crime-investigation procedures into all members of the executive board, including Hunter Biden." "I would like to emphasize the fact that presumption of innocence is a principle in Ukraine," added Shokin. Joe Biden "clearly had to know" about the probe before he insisted on Shokin's ouster . Via The Hill: ..."
"... The U.S. Embassy in Kiev that coordinated Biden's work in the country repeatedly and publicly discussed the general prosecutor's case against Burisma; ..."
"... President Obama named Biden the administration's point man on Ukraine in February 2014 ..."
"... Remember Victoria Nuland's famous phone recording of "**** the EU?" This was nothing more than another CIA destabilization campaign carried out of another Sovereign Country. With the goal of breaking the Bush Senior & Jim Baker agreement of not surrounding Russia with NATO countries after their Collapse. ..."
"... Let's face it. If Ukrainians loved it's Country, Joey, Hunter and the Choco-**** would have wound up like Mikhail Lesin during an all night party in an upscale grotto in Kiev by now! ..."
"... At last some questions for this dirt ball-burisma is tied in with one of the most if not the most corrupt oligarch, Koloimiski. Biden is up to his eyeballs in some dodgy deals in china as well-this guy and his son are walking corruption personified. ..."
"... Didn't Hillary teach Joe that a tax free foundation is better than using your son's LLC for laundering the bribes... This is basic stuff. ..."
"... Joe "the Conqueror" "Caesar Magnus" Biden. Joe of Ukraine, the best bud of $oro$. ..."
Apr 02, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com
Originally from: Forget 'Creepy' - Biden Has A Major Ukraine Problem Joe Biden appears to have made a major tactical error last year when he bragged to an audience of foreign policy experts how he threatened to hurl Ukraine into bankruptcy if their top prosecutor, General Viktor Shokin, wasn't immediately fired, according to The Hill 's John Solomon.

In his own words, with video cameras rolling, Biden described how he threatened Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in March 2016 that the Obama administration would pull $1 billion in U.S. loan guarantees , sending the former Soviet republic toward insolvency, if it didn't immediately fire Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin. - The Hill

"I said, ' You're not getting the billion .' I'm going to be leaving here in, I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said: ' I'm leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you're not getting the money, '" bragged Biden, recalling the conversation with Poroshenko.

" Well, son of a bitch, he got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid at the time," Biden said at the Council on Foreign Relations event - while insisting that former president Obama was complicit in the threat.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/Q0_AqpdwqK4?start=3128

Interviews with a half-dozen senior Ukrainian officials confirm Biden's account, though they claim the pressure was applied over several months in late 2015 and early 2016, not just six hours of one dramatic day . Whatever the case, Poroshenko and Ukraine's parliament obliged by ending Shokin's tenure as prosecutor. Shokin was facing steep criticism in Ukraine, and among some U.S. officials, for not bringing enough corruption prosecutions when he was fired. - The Hill

And why would Biden want the "son of a bitch" fired?

In what must be an amazing coincidence, the prosecutor was leading a wide-ranging corruption investigation into a natural gas firm - which Biden's son, Hunter, sat on the board of directors.

The prosecutor he got fired was leading a wide-ranging corruption probe into the natural gas firm Burisma Holdings that employed Biden's younger son, Hunter, as a board member.

U.S. banking records show Hunter Biden's American-based firm, Rosemont Seneca Partners LLC, received regular transfers into one of its accounts -- usually more than $166,000 a month -- from Burisma from spring 2014 through fall 2015, during a period when Vice President Biden was the main U.S. official dealing with Ukraine and its tense relations with Russia. - The Hill

The Hill 's Solomon reviewed the general prosecutor's file for the Burisma probe - which he reports shows Hunter Biden, his business partner Devon Archer and their firm, Rosemont Seneca, as potential recipients of money.

And before he was fired, Shokin says he had made "specific plans" for the investigation - including "interrogations and other crime-investigation procedures into all members of the executive board, including Hunter Biden." "I would like to emphasize the fact that presumption of innocence is a principle in Ukraine," added Shokin. Joe Biden "clearly had to know" about the probe before he insisted on Shokin's ouster . Via The Hill:

Although Biden made no mention of his son in his 2018 speech, U.S. and Ukrainian authorities both told me Biden and his office clearly had to know about the general prosecutor's probe of Burisma and his son's role. They noted that:

President Obama named Biden the administration's point man on Ukraine in February 2014 , after a popular revolution ousted Russia-friendly President Viktor Yanukovych and as Moscow sent military forces into Ukraine's Crimea territory.

***

Key questions for 'ol Joe:

Was it appropriate for your son and his firm to cash in on Ukraine while you served as point man for Ukraine policy? What work was performed for the money Hunter Biden's firm received? Did you know about the Burisma probe? And when it was publicly announced that your son worked for Burisma, should you have recused yourself from leveraging a U.S. policy to pressure the prosecutor who very publicly pursued Burisma?

Read the rest of Solomon's report here .

Chupacabra-322 , 58 minutes ago link

Remember Victoria Nuland's famous phone recording of "**** the EU?" This was nothing more than another CIA destabilization campaign carried out of another Sovereign Country. With the goal of breaking the Bush Senior & Jim Baker agreement of not surrounding Russia with NATO countries after their Collapse.

Son of Captain Nemo , 1 hour ago link

Let's face it. If Ukrainians loved it's Country, Joey, Hunter and the Choco-**** would have wound up like Mikhail Lesin during an all night party in an upscale grotto in Kiev by now!

Amazing that all 3 of them are still alive and that "Song Bird" McCain (#4) was allowed to die from his brain cancer instead of joining them or being dismembered and put on display when he made these visit(s) ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IbfsTcJCKDE ) along with General Vallely (#5)!!!

Taras Bulba , 1 hour ago

At last some questions for this dirt ball-burisma is tied in with one of the most if not the most corrupt oligarch, Koloimiski. Biden is up to his eyeballs in some dodgy deals in china as well-this guy and his son are walking corruption personified.

CarifonianSeven, 2 hours ago

Didn't Hillary teach Joe that a tax free foundation is better than using your son's LLC for laundering the bribes... This is basic stuff.

Pernicious Gold Phallusy, 1 hour ago

Joe cheated his way through undergrad and law school. He would be unable to understand any of that.

whittler, 1 hour ago

What? You mean folks will finally care about little Hunter hiring Azov neo-Nazi fighters (oops! security I mean) to protect his fracking site just north of the 'troubles' in the eastern Ukraine? I'm sure they were working for free and that no Biden money was ever used to payoff (oops again! I mean pay the wages of) a bunch of Nazis (dang it again, I mean neo-Nazis, it sounds so much warmer and fuzzier when you add 'neo').

Creepy Joe and all D's agree, 'Nazi' = bad, neo-Nazi = warm, fuzzy and good; heck, they even like to kill Russians Russians Russians!!!

Cracker 16 , 1 hour ago

Joe "the Conqueror" "Caesar Magnus" Biden. Joe of Ukraine, the best bud of $oro$.

[Apr 02, 2019] NATO loses in the Ukraine election

Notable quotes:
"... Volodymyr Zelensky isn't pro-Russia. However, he isn't anti-Russia , which is a huge change from President Petro O. Poroshenko, who came in a distant second. ..."
"... While two pro-Western candidates will go head to head in a runoff in three weeks, Russia-friendly Yuriy Boyko and Oleksandr Vilkul garnered a combined 15 percent. ..."
"... This is also a smear, Boyko and Vilkul aren't "loyal to the Kremlin", but they are pro-Russian. Between Boyko and Vilkul's votes, plus Zelensky's votes, it virtually assures that Ukraine won't have an anti-Russian President in a few months. ..."
"... All I know about the Ukraine is that Hillary, Kerry and Co. fucked them over and went with the Nazis contingency. Sorry but the world as it stands is so fucked up I can't keep track of the players or the plays. ..."
Apr 02, 2019 | caucus99percent.com

This headline is a smear by warmongers .

Volodymyr Zelensky isn't pro-Russia. However, he isn't anti-Russia , which is a huge change from President Petro O. Poroshenko, who came in a distant second.

Turnout was estimated at about 63 percent, slightly more than the 60 percent who voted in 2014.

That's not all .

A better-than-expected showing for Russia-leaning candidates in the first round of Ukraine's presidential election could mean forces loyal to the Kremlin make inroads at the country's parliamentary vote later this year.

While two pro-Western candidates will go head to head in a runoff in three weeks, Russia-friendly Yuriy Boyko and Oleksandr Vilkul garnered a combined 15 percent.

This is also a smear, Boyko and Vilkul aren't "loyal to the Kremlin", but they are pro-Russian. Between Boyko and Vilkul's votes, plus Zelensky's votes, it virtually assures that Ukraine won't have an anti-Russian President in a few months.

guess that's good news?
All I know about the Ukraine is that Hillary, Kerry and Co. fucked them over and went with the Nazis contingency. Sorry but the world as it stands is so fucked up I can't keep track of the players or the plays.
There all obscene and guess who stands in the center of this global nightmare instigating all this darkness. Hummmmmm.....USA,USA,USA. Makes me want to puke. Makes me feel like voting for anyone I'm allowed to is nothing but a crime against humanity.
Including Bernie or anyone the powers that be kindly allow us to consider under their carefully controlled game. Oh well.
Guess I'm glad that the Ukraine may just get out from under their whatever. Hey maybe if people globally all stood up and refused to vote for any of these assholes they fling out there what would happen? Nothing most likely as there is always the specter hanging around of what will happen to your life if you step out of line.

span y Pricknick on Mon, 04/01/2019 - 10:45pm

You would still have so called rulers.

@shaharazade

Hey maybe if people globally all stood up and refused to vote for any of these assholes they fling out there what would happen?

If nobody voted, nothing would change unless there's revolt. Kinda like what we're quickly approaching. It's vote, revolt or die.

[Apr 02, 2019] 'Yats' Is No Longer the Guy by Robert Parry

Highly recommended!
This article by late Robert Parry is from 2016 but is still relevant in context of the current Ukrainian elections and the color revolution is Venezuela. The power of neoliberal propaganda is simply tremendous. For foreign events it is able to distort the story to such an extent that the most famous quote of CIA director William Casey "We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false" looks like constatation of already accomplished goal.
Apr 11, 2016 | consortiumnews.com

Exclusive: Several weeks before Ukraine's 2014 coup, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Nuland had already picked Arseniy Yatsenyuk to be the future leader, but now "Yats" is no longer the guy, writes Robert Parry.

In reporting on the resignation of Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, the major U.S. newspapers either ignored or distorted Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland's infamous intercepted phone call before the 2014 coup in which she declared "Yats is the guy!"

Though Nuland's phone call introduced many Americans to the previously obscure Yatsenyuk, its timing – a few weeks before the ouster of elected Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych – was never helpful to Washington's desired narrative of the Ukrainian people rising up on their own to oust a corrupt leader.

Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland, who pushed for the Ukraine coup and helped pick the post-coup leaders.

Instead, the conversation between Nuland and U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt sounded like two proconsuls picking which Ukrainian politicians would lead the new government. Nuland also disparaged the less aggressive approach of the European Union with the pithy put-down: "Fuck the E.U.!"

More importantly, the intercepted call, released onto YouTube in early February 2014, represented powerful evidence that these senior U.S. officials were plotting – or at least collaborating in – a coup d'etat against Ukraine's democratically elected president. So, the U.S. government and the mainstream U.S. media have since consigned this revealing discussion to the Great Memory Hole.

On Monday, in reporting on Yatsenyuk's Sunday speech in which he announced that he is stepping down, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal didn't mention the Nuland-Pyatt conversation at all. The New York Times did mention the call but misled its readers regarding its timing, making it appear as if the call followed rather than preceded the coup. That way the call sounded like two American officials routinely appraising Ukraine's future leaders, not plotting to oust one government and install another.

The Times article by Andrew E. Kramer said: "Before Mr. Yatsenyuk's appointment as prime minister in 2014, a leaked recording of a telephone conversation between Victoria J. Nuland, a United States assistant secretary of state, and the American ambassador in Ukraine, Geoffrey R. Pyatt, seemed to underscore the West's support for his candidacy. 'Yats is the guy,' Ms. Nuland had said."

Notice, however, that if you didn't know that the conversation occurred in late January or early February 2014, you wouldn't know that it preceded the Feb. 22, 2014 coup. You might have thought that it was just a supportive chat before Yatsenyuk got his new job.

You also wouldn't know that much of the Nuland-Pyatt conversation focused on how they were going to "glue this thing" or "midwife this thing," comments sounding like prima facie evidence that the U.S. government was engaged in "regime change" in Ukraine, on Russia's border.

The 'No Coup' Conclusion

But Kramer's lack of specificity about the timing and substance of the call fits with a long pattern of New York Times' bias in its coverage of the Ukraine crisis. On Jan. 4, 2015, nearly a year after the U.S.-backed coup, the Times published an "investigation" article declaring that there never had been a coup. It was just a case of President Yanukovych deciding to leave and not coming back.

That article reached its conclusion, in part, by ignoring the evidence of a coup, including the Nuland-Pyatt phone call. The story was co-written by Kramer and so it is interesting to know that he was at least aware of the "Yats is the guy" reference although it was ignored in last year's long-form article.

Instead, Kramer and his co-author Andrew Higgins took pains to mock anyone who actually looked at the evidence and dared reach the disfavored conclusion about a coup. If you did, you were some rube deluded by Russian propaganda.

"Russia has attributed Mr. Yanukovych's ouster to what it portrays as a violent, 'neo-fascist' coup supported and even choreographed by the West and dressed up as a popular uprising," Higgins and Kramer wrote . "Few outside the Russian propaganda bubble ever seriously entertained the Kremlin's line. But almost a year after the fall of Mr. Yanukovych's government, questions remain about how and why it collapsed so quickly and completely."

The Times' article concluded that Yanukovych "was not so much overthrown as cast adrift by his own allies, and that Western officials were just as surprised by the meltdown as anyone else. The allies' desertion, fueled in large part by fear, was accelerated by the seizing by protesters of a large stock of weapons in the west of the country. But just as important, the review of the final hours shows, was the panic in government ranks created by Mr. Yanukovych's own efforts to make peace."

Yet, one might wonder what the Times thinks a coup looks like. Indeed, the Ukrainian coup had many of the same earmarks as such classics as the CIA-engineered regime changes in Iran in 1953 and in Guatemala in 1954.

The way those coups played out is now historically well known. Secret U.S. government operatives planted nasty propaganda about the targeted leader, stirred up political and economic chaos, conspired with rival political leaders, spread rumors of worse violence to come and then – as political institutions collapsed – watched as the scared but duly elected leader made a hasty departure.

In Iran, the coup reinstalled the autocratic Shah who then ruled with a heavy hand for the next quarter century; in Guatemala, the coup led to more than three decades of brutal military regimes and the killing of some 200,000 Guatemalans.

Coups don't have to involve army tanks occupying the public squares, although that is an alternative model which follows many of the same initial steps except that the military is brought in at the end. The military coup was a common approach especially in Latin America in the 1960s and 1970s.

' Color Revolutions'

But the preferred method in more recent years has been the "color revolution," which operates behind the façade of a "peaceful" popular uprising and international pressure on the targeted leader to show restraint until it's too late to stop the coup. Despite the restraint, the leader is still accused of gross human rights violations, all the better to justify his removal.

Later, the ousted leader may get an image makeover; instead of a cruel bully, he is ridiculed for not showing sufficient resolve and letting his base of support melt away, as happened with Mohammad Mossadegh in Iran and Jacobo Arbenz in Guatemala.

But the reality of what happened in Ukraine was never hard to figure out. Nor did you have to be inside "the Russian propaganda bubble" to recognize it. George Friedman, the founder of the global intelligence firm Stratfor, called Yanukovych's overthrow "the most blatant coup in history."

Which is what it appears if you consider the evidence. The first step in the process was to create tensions around the issue of pulling Ukraine out of Russia's economic orbit and capturing it in the European Union's gravity, a plan defined by influential American neocons in 2013.

On Sept. 26, 2013, National Endowment for Democracy President Carl Gershman, who has been a major neocon paymaster for decades, took to the op-ed page of the neocon Washington Post and called Ukraine "the biggest prize" and an important interim step toward toppling Russian President Vladimir Putin.

At the time, Gershman, whose NED is funded by the U.S. Congress to the tune of about $100 million a year, was financing scores of projects inside Ukraine training activists, paying for journalists and organizing business groups.

As for the even bigger prize -- Putin -- Gershman wrote: "Ukraine's choice to join Europe will accelerate the demise of the ideology of Russian imperialism that Putin represents. Russians, too, face a choice, and Putin may find himself on the losing end not just in the near abroad but within Russia itself."

At that time, in early fall 2013, Ukraine's President Yanukovych was exploring the idea of reaching out to Europe with an association agreement. But he got cold feet in November 2013 when economic experts in Kiev advised him that the Ukrainian economy would suffer a $160 billion hit if it separated from Russia, its eastern neighbor and major trading partner. There was also the West's demand that Ukraine accept a harsh austerity plan from the International Monetary Fund.

Yanukovych wanted more time for the E.U. negotiations, but his decision angered many western Ukrainians who saw their future more attached to Europe than Russia. Tens of thousands of protesters began camping out at Maidan Square in Kiev, with Yanukovych ordering the police to show restraint.

Meanwhile, with Yanukovych shifting back toward Russia, which was offering a more generous $15 billion loan and discounted natural gas, he soon became the target of American neocons and the U.S. media, which portrayed Ukraine's political unrest as a black-and-white case of a brutal and corrupt Yanukovych opposed by a saintly "pro-democracy" movement.

Cheering an Uprising

The Maidan uprising was urged on by American neocons, including Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Nuland, who passed out cookies at the Maidan and reminded Ukrainian business leaders that the United States had invested $5 billion in their "European aspirations."

A screen shot of U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland speaking to U.S. and Ukrainian business leaders on Dec. 13, 2013, at an event sponsored by Chevron, with its logo to Nuland's left.

Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, also showed up, standing on stage with right-wing extremists from the Svoboda Party and telling the crowd that the United States was with them in their challenge to the Ukrainian government.

As the winter progressed, the protests grew more violent. Neo-Nazi and other extremist elements from Lviv and other western Ukrainian cities began arriving in well-organized brigades or "sotins" of 100 trained street fighters. Police were attacked with firebombs and other weapons as the violent protesters began seizing government buildings and unfurling Nazi banners and even a Confederate flag.

Though Yanukovych continued to order his police to show restraint, he was still depicted in the major U.S. news media as a brutal thug who was callously murdering his own people. The chaos reached a climax on Feb. 20 when mysterious snipers opened fire, killing both police and protesters. As the police retreated, the militants advanced brandishing firearms and other weapons. The confrontation led to significant loss of life, pushing the death toll to around 80 including more than a dozen police.

U.S. diplomats and the mainstream U.S. press immediately blamed Yanukovych for the sniper attack, though the circumstances remain murky to this day and some investigations have suggested that the lethal sniper fire came from buildings controlled by Right Sektor extremists.

To tamp down the worsening violence, a shaken Yanukovych signed a European-brokered deal on Feb. 21, in which he accepted reduced powers and an early election so he could be voted out of office. He also agreed to requests from Vice President Joe Biden to pull back the police.

The precipitous police withdrawal opened the path for the neo-Nazis and other street fighters to seize presidential offices and force Yanukovych and his officials to flee for their lives. The new coup regime was immediately declared "legitimate" by the U.S. State Department with Yanukovych sought on murder charges. Nuland's favorite, Yatsenyuk, became the new prime minister.

Throughout the crisis, the mainstream U.S. press hammered home the theme of white-hatted protesters versus a black-hatted president. The police were portrayed as brutal killers who fired on unarmed supporters of "democracy." The good-guy/bad-guy narrative was all the American people heard from the major media.

The New York Times went so far as to delete the slain policemen from the narrative and simply report that the police had killed all those who died in the Maidan. A typical Times report on March 5, 2014, summed up the storyline: "More than 80 protesters were shot to death by the police as an uprising spiraled out of control in mid-February."

The mainstream U.S. media also sought to discredit anyone who observed the obvious fact that an unconstitutional coup had just occurred. A new theme emerged that portrayed Yanukovych as simply deciding to abandon his government because of the moral pressure from the noble and peaceful Maidan protests.

Any reference to a "coup" was dismissed as "Russian propaganda." There was a parallel determination in the U.S. media to discredit or ignore evidence that neo-Nazi militias had played an important role in ousting Yanukovych and in the subsequent suppression of anti-coup resistance in eastern and southern Ukraine. That opposition among ethnic-Russian Ukrainians simply became "Russian aggression."

Nazi symbols on helmets worn by members of Ukraine's Azov battalion. (As filmed by a Norwegian film crew and shown on German TV)

This refusal to notice what was actually a remarkable story – the willful unleashing of Nazi storm troopers on a European population for the first time since World War II – reached absurd levels as The New York Times and The Washington Post buried references to the neo-Nazis at the end of stories, almost as afterthoughts.

The Washington Post went to the extreme of rationalizing Swastikas and other Nazi symbols by quoting one militia commander as calling them "romantic" gestures by impressionable young men. [See Consortiumnews.com's " Ukraine's 'Romantic' Neo-Nazi Storm Troopers ."]

But today – more than two years after what U.S. and Ukrainian officials like to call "the Revolution of Dignity" – the U.S.-backed Ukrainian government is sinking into dysfunction, reliant on handouts from the IMF and Western governments.

And, in a move perhaps now more symbolic than substantive, Prime Minister Yatsenyuk is stepping down. Yats is no longer the guy.

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 ).


Khalid Talaat , April 16, 2016 at 20:39

Is it too far fetched to think that all these color revolutions are a perfection of the process to unleash another fake color revolution, only this time it is a Red, White and Blue revolution here at home? Those that continue to booze and snooze while watching the tube will not know the difference until it is too late.

The freedom and tranquility of our country depends on finding and implementing a counterweight to the presstitutes and their propaganda. The alternative is too destructive in its natural development.

Abe , April 15, 2016 at 18:49

Yats and Porko are the guys who broke Ukraine. By the end of December 2015, Ukraine's gross domestic product had shrunk around 19 percent in comparison with 2013. Its decimated industrial sector needs less fuel. Yatsie did a heck of a job.

Abe , April 15, 2016 at 18:35

Carl Gershman: "Ukraine is the biggest prize" -- Paragraph 6 of https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/former-soviet-states-stand-up-to-russia-will-the-us/2013/09/26/b5ad2be4-246a-11e3-b75d-5b7f66349852_story.html

David Smith , April 12, 2016 at 13:51

The timing of "Yats" departure is ominous. Mid-April, six weeks from now would be the first chance to renew the invasion of DPR Donesk/Lugansk."Yats" failed in 2014, and didn't try in 2015. Who is "the new guy"? Will the new Prime Minister begin raving about renewing the holy war to recover the lost oblasts? 2016 is really Ukraine's last chance. Ukraine refuses to implement Minsk2, and they have been receiving lots of new weapons. I believe President Putin put the Syrian operation on " standby" not only to avoid approaching the border, provoking a Turkish intervention, but also so he can give undistracted attention to DPR Donesk/Lugansk.

Bill Rood , April 12, 2016 at 11:50

I guess I must be inside the Russian propaganda bubble. It was obvious to me when I looked at the YouTube videos of policemen burning after being hit with Molotov cocktails.

We played the same game of encouraging government "restraint" in Syria, where we demanded Assad free "political prisoners," but we now accuse him of deliberately encouraging ISIS by freeing those people, so that he can point to ISIS and ask, "Do you want that?" Targeted leaders are damned if they do and damned if they don't.

Andrei , April 12, 2016 at 10:26

"the Ukrainian coup had many of the same earmarks as such classics as the CIA-engineered regime changes in Iran in 1953 and in Guatemala in 1954", Romania 1989 Shots were fired by snipers in order to stirr the crowds (sounds familiar?) and also by the army after Ceasescu ran away, which resulted in civilians getting murdered. Could it possibly be that it was said : "Iliescu (next elected president) is the guy!" ?

Joe L. , April 12, 2016 at 11:00

Check out the attempted coup against Hugo Chavez in Venezuela 2002, that is very similar with protesters, snipers on rooftops, IMF immediately offering loans to the new coup government, new government positions for the coup plotters, complacency with the media – propaganda, funding by USAID and the National Endowment for Democracy etc. John Pilger documents how the coup occurred in his documentary "War on Democracy" – https://vimeo.com/16724719 .

archaos , April 12, 2016 at 09:45

It was noted in the minutes of Verkhovna Rada almost 2 years before Maidan 2 , that Geoffrey Pyatt was fomenting and funding destabilisation of Ukraine.
All of Svoboda Nazis in parliament (and other fascisti) then booed the MP who stated this.

Mark Thomason , April 12, 2016 at 06:57

Also, the Dutch voted "no" on the economic agreement the coup was meant to force through instead of the Russian agreement accepted by the President it overthrew. Now both "Yats" and the economic agreement are gone. All that is left is the war. Neocons are still happen. They wanted the war. They really want to overthrow Putin, and Ukraine was just a tool in that.

Realist , April 12, 2016 at 05:51

You're right, it doesn't have to be the military that carries out a coup by deploying tanks on the National Mall. In 2000, it was the United States Supreme Court that exceeded its constitutional authority and installed George W. Bush as president, though in reality he had lost that election. I wonder when that move will rightfully be characterized as a coup by the historians.

Bryan Hemming , April 12, 2016 at 04:00

"On Sept. 26, 2013, National Endowment for Democracy President Carl Gershman, who has been a major neocon paymaster for decades, took to the op-ed page of the neocon Washington Post and called Ukraine "the biggest prize" and an important interim step toward toppling Russian President Vladimir Putin."

It should be remembered that Victoria Nuland took up the post of Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs in Washington on September 18, 2013.

Coincidentally, two other women closely connected to events in Ukraine were also in Washington during September 2013.

Friend of Nuland and boss of the IMF, which has its own HQ in Washington, Christine Lagarde was swift to respond to a Ukraine request for IMF loans on February 27th 2014, just five days after the removal of Yanukovych on February 22nd. Lagarde is pictured with Baronness Catherine Ashton in Washington in a Facebook entry dated September 30th 2013. Ashton was High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy at the time.

Though visiting Kiev at the same time as Nuland in February 2014 Catherine Ashton never appeared in public with her, which seems a little odd considering the women were on the same mission, and talking to the same people. Nevertheless, despite appearing shy of being photographed with each other the two women weren't quite so shy of being pictured with leaders of the coup, including the right wing extremist, Oleh Tyahnybok.

Ashton refused to be drawn into commenting on Nuland's "Fuck the E.U.!" outburst, describing Nuland as "a friend of mine." The two women certainly weren't strangers, they had worked closely together before. September 2012 saw them involved in discussions with Iran negotiator Saeed Jalili over the country's supposed nuclear arms ambitions.

The question is not so much whether the three women talked about Ukraine's future – it would be ridiculous to think they did not – but how closely they worked together, and exactly how closely they might have been involved in events leading up to the overthrow of the legitimate government in Kiev. More on this here:

https://bryanhemming.wordpress.com/2015/04/01/double-double-toil-and-trouble-the-cauldron-of-kiev/

Pablo Diablo , April 11, 2016 at 22:56

Another failed "regime change". Aren't these guys (Neoconservatives) great. They fail, piss off/kill millions, yet seem to keep making money and retaining power. Time to WAKE UP AMERICA.

Skip Edwards , April 11, 2016 at 20:06

Read "The Devil'Chessboard" by David Talbot to understand what has been occurring as a result of America's Dark, Shadow government, an un-elected bunch of vicious psychopaths controlling our destiny; unless stopped. Get a clue and realize that "Yats is our guy" Victoria Nuland was Hillary Clinton's "gal." Hillary Clinton is Robert Kagen's "gal." Time to flush all these rats out of the hold and get on with our lives.

Joe L. , April 11, 2016 at 18:40

Mr. Parry thank you for delving into the proven history of coups and the parallels with Ukraine. It amazes me how anyone can outright deny this was a coup especially if they know anything about US coups going back to WW2 (Iran 1953, Guatemala 1954, Chile 1973, attempt in Venezuela 2002 etc. – and there are a whole slew more). I read before, as you have rightly pointed out, that in 1953 the CIA led a propaganda campaign in Iran against Mossadegh as well as financing opposition protesters and opposition government officials. Another angle, as well, is looking historically back to what papers such as the New York Times were reporting around the time of the coup in Iran – especially when we know that the US/Britain overthrew the democratically elected Mossadegh for their own oil interests (British Petroleum):

New York Times: "Mossadegh Plays with Fire" (August 15, 1953):

The world has so many trouble spots these days that one is apt to pass over the odd one here and there to preserve a little peace of mind. It would be well, however, to keep an eye on Iran, where matters are going from bad to worse, thanks to the machinations of Premier Mossadegh.

Some of us used to ascribe our inability to persuade Dr. Mossadegh of the validity of our ideas to the impossibility of making him understand or see things our way. We thought of him as a sincere, well-meaning, patriotic Iranian, who had a different point of view and made different deductions from the same set of facts. We now know that he is a power-hungry, personally ambitious, ruthless demagogue who is trampling upon the liberties of his own people. We have seen this onetime champion of liberty maintain martial law, curb freedom of the press, radio, speech and assembly, resort to illegal arrests and torture, dismiss the Senate, destroy the power of the Shah, take over control of the army, and now he is about to destroy the Majlis, which is the lower house of Parliament.

His power would seem to be complete, but he has alienated the traditional ruling classes -the aristocrats, landlords, financiers and tribal leaders. These elements are anti-Communist. So is the Shah and so are the army leaders and the urban middle classes. There is a traditional, historic fear, suspicion and dislike of Russia and the Russians. The peasants, who make up the overwhelming mass of the population, are illiterate and nonpolitical. Finally, there is still no evidence that the Tudeh (Communist) party is strong enough or well enough organized, financed and led to take power.

All this simply means that there is no immediate danger of a Communist coup or Russian intervention. On the other hand, Dr. Mossadegh is encouraging the Tudeh and is following policies which will make the Communists more and more dangerous. He is a sorcerer's apprentice, calling up forces he will not be able to control.

Iran is a weak, divided, poverty-stricken country which possesses an immense latent wealth in oil and a crucial strategic position. This is very different from neighboring Turkey, a strong, united, determined and advanced nation, which can afford to deal with the Russians because she has nothing to fear -and therefore the West has nothing to fear. Thanks largely to Dr. Mossadegh, there is much to fear in Iran.

http://www.mohammadmossadegh.com/news/new-york-times/august-15-1953/

My feeling is that the biggest sin that our society has is forgetting history. If we remembered history I would think that it would be very difficult to pull off coups but most media does not revisit history which proves US coups even against democracies. I actually think that the coup that occurred in Ukraine was similar to the attempted coup in Venezuela in 2002 with snipers on rooftops, immediate blame for the deaths on Hugo Chavez where media manipulated the footage, immediate acceptance of the temporary coup government by the US Government, immediately offering IMF loans for the new coup government, government positions for many of the coup plotters, and let us not leave out the funding for the coup coming from USAID and the National Endowment for Democracy. I also remember seeing the New York Times immediately blaming Chavez and praising the coup but when the coup was overturned and US fingerprints started to become revealed (with many of the coup plotters fleeing to the US) then the New York Times wrote a limited retraction buried in their paper. Shameless.

SFOMARCO , April 11, 2016 at 15:16

How was NED able to finance "scores of projects inside Ukraine training activists, paying for journalists and organizing business groups", not to mention to host such dignitaries as Cookie Nuland, Loser McCain and assorted Bidens? Seems like a recipe for a coup "hidden in plain sight".

Bob Van Noy , April 11, 2016 at 14:36

Ukraine, one would hope, represents the "Bridge Too Far" moment for the proponents of regime change. Surely Americans must be catching on to what we do for selected nations in the name of "giving them their freedoms". The Kagan Family, empowered by their newly endorsed candidate for President, Hillary Clinton, will feel justified in carrying on a new cold war, this time world wide. Of course they will not be doing the fighting, they, like Dick Cheney are the self appointed intellects of geopolitical chess, much like The Georgetown Set of the Kennedy era, they perceive themselves as the only ones smart enough to plan America's future.

Helen Marshall , April 11, 2016 at 17:11

I wish. How many Americans know ANYTHNG about what has happened in Ukraine, about Crimea and its history, and/or could even locate them on a map?

Pastor Agnostic , April 12, 2016 at 04:11

Nuland is merely the inhouse, PNAC female version of Sidney Blumenthal. Which raises the scary question. Who would she pick to be SecState?

[Apr 02, 2019] There will be backlash against the fascists in Brazil, and the right wing leaderships in governments elsewhere in Latin America that the US has maneuvered into place as these leaders fail to deliver material gains to their populations. And fail they will considering we are in late-stage neoliberalism

Notable quotes:
"... Writing off Brazil (and India and South Africa for that matter) just because the empire has succeeded in swinging an election or two in those places, or because the empire's lawfare scams seem to be working at the moment, is a mistake. ..."
"... These conspicuous successes of the Empire of Chaos , as Escobar calls America, do not significantly change the anti-imperialist attitudes of the populations in these countries. ..."
Apr 02, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

William Gruff , Apr 1, 2019 3:29:05 PM | link

Karlof1 @82

Agreed.

Writing off Brazil (and India and South Africa for that matter) just because the empire has succeeded in swinging an election or two in those places, or because the empire's lawfare scams seem to be working at the moment, is a mistake.

These conspicuous successes of the Empire of Chaos , as Escobar calls America, do not significantly change the anti-imperialist attitudes of the populations in these countries.

There will be backlash against the fascists in Brazil, and the right wing leaderships in governments elsewhere in Latin America that the US has maneuvered into place as these leaders fail to deliver material gains to their populations. And fail they will considering we are in late-stage capitalism.

[Apr 01, 2019] G7 Letter Takes Aim At Role Of Violent Extremists In Ukrainian Society, Election

Apr 01, 2019 | www.rferl.org

'They Intimidate Citizens, Damage Ukraine's Reputation'

In the letter that was addressed to Avakov on March 15, French Ambassador Isabelle Dumont wrote on behalf of her fellow ambassadors that "the G7 group is concerned by extreme political movements in Ukraine, whose violent actions are worrying in themselves."

"They intimidate Ukrainian citizens, attempt to usurp the role of the National Police in safeguarding elections, and damage the Ukrainian government's national and international reputation," Dumont continued, in a thinly veiled reference to the National Corps and National Militia, the far-right Azov group's political and vigilante wings, respectively.

... ... ...

'Nationalist Hate Groups'

The National Corps and National Militia were products of the Azov Battalion, a volunteer military regiment formed in the early days of the conflict against Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine that began in 2014. The battalion has been accused by international human rights groups of "war crimes" on the battlefield and has since been brought under the control of the National Guard, which is overseen by Avakov.

Members of the National Corps and National Militia have been blamed for multiple violent attacks on minorities in Ukraine, particularly Roma and LGBTI persons, in the past year.

The U.S. State Department described those far-right entities as "nationalist hate groups" in its Ukraine country report on Human Rights for 2018 released on March 13.

.... ... ...

On March 9, the National Corps and National Militia clashed with police outside the presidential administration in Kyiv and later in Cherkasy, where Poroshenko was campaigning. At least 15 police officers were wounded.

"The violent incidents of March 9 were a reminder that, just a few weeks ahead of the elections, one crucial challenge is to prevent an escalation of tensions," Dumont wrote in the letter to Avakov. "We have noted with concern that the very same groups involved in the violent incidents have registered as election observers and publicly threatened to use violence should they consider that election fraud is occurring."

Indeed, Ukraine's Central Election Commission has approved the National Militia to monitor the polling. Soon after that announcement, the group's spokesman warned that "if law enforcers turn a blind eye to outright violations and don't want to document them," then they plan to follow the lead of a group leader who said they would "punch someone in the face in the name of justice...without hesitation."

[Mar 31, 2019] Bacevich on despicable propagandist of Iraq war, chichenhawk Robert Kogan by Andrew J. Bacevich

This mediocrity does not deserve such a long article but still. First of all Kagan should commit hara-kiri long ago for this pushing for Iraq invasion. But such personalities have no honor. It's all about money for them.
According to wikipedia "In 2008, Kagan wrote an article titled "Neocon Nation: Neoconservatism, c. 1776" for World Affairs , describing the main components of American neoconservatism as a belief in the rectitude of applying US moralism to the world stage, support for the US to act alone, the promotion of American-style liberty and democracy in other countries, the belief in American hegemony, [31] the confidence in US military power, and a distrust of international institutions. [32] According to Kagan, his foreign-policy views are "deeply rooted in American history and widely shared by Americans". [33] "
This MIC stooge even does not understand what authoritarism means. It serves his as a label for people that neoconservatives do not like -- politician that deviate from neoliberal consensus. Authoritarian personality is a personality tendency which in various degrees present in almost every man. Triats include defence to authority, "kiss up, kick down" behaviour patterns, etc. So paradoxically authoritarians should support the role of the USA as the global hegemon -- wet dream of Kogan and his fellow neoconservatives. So the current Brazil president is in this sense authoritarian . But Putin is not.
Thos people who object the dominant role of the USA are by definition rebels, not authoritarians. And karag behvaes like a typical imperist condidering of socal form different from natural security state current existing in the USA (which recreated Russiagate and NeoMcCartyism hustria) inferior. This MIC stooge even thing that the USA is a democracy (it is probably democracy to top top0.01$ only)
Such people naturally tend to flock to Republican Party in the USA. Like neoliberal did with the work "freedom" Kagan creates his own definition. For example in no way Putin is an authoritarian as he essentially depends on the consensus with Russian elite to govern.
Mar 29, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Originally from: Robert Kagan's Cloudy Crystal Ball By Andrew J. Bacevich

He now perceives global authoritarianism as today's greatest challenge, with conservatives on the wrong side of the fight.

Once labeled a neoconservative, Robert Kagan is actually a Friedmanite. Like Thomas Friedman of The New York Times, Kagan specializes in elegant oversimplification, regularly producing artfully constructed polemics that are superficially persuasive but substantively misleading. Taken seriously, they can even be dangerous.

Friedman describes himself as "a big believer in the idea of the super-story, the notion that we all carry around with us a big lens, a big framework, through which we look at the world." Fastening onto some big framework enables Friedman, in his words, to "order events, and decide what is important and what is not." Choose the correct -- or most convenient -- big framework and everything becomes clear. This describes Kagan's approach as well, along with a tendency to deploy act-now-or-all-is-lost rhetoric.

Certain policy types have a particular susceptibility to super-stories that purport to explain everything. It liberates them from actually having to think. For those eager to remain au courant, it signals which way the herd is heading.

Prominent examples of this recurring phenomenon include George Kennan's savvy marketing of "containment" as a basis of U.S. grand strategy at the outset of the Cold War and Francis Fukuyama's impeccably timed revelation four decades later as the Cold War was winding down that history itself had ended.

Kagan's latest entry into this field is an immensely long essay that recently appeared in The Washington Post. The title of that essay is "The Strongmen Strike Back." While embroidering his argument with several thousand words of filler, Kagan helpfully states his thesis with a single compact sentence: "Today, authoritarianism has emerged as the greatest challenge facing the liberal democratic world -- a profound ideological, as well as strategic, challenge."

Put simply, the world is once more divided into two camps. It's us vs. them, white hats against black hats, good besieged by evil, just like the old days.

Furthermore, Kagan charges, too many American conservatives are choosing to align with the wrong side. It is becoming increasingly difficult, he writes, to distinguish between conservative efforts "to protect political and cultural traditions," on the one hand, and "the protection of white Christian cultural ascendancy" on the other. While stopping just shy of issuing a blanket indictment, Kagan contends that growing numbers of conservatives reject the principles enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and "find themselves in sympathy with the world's staunchest anti-American leaders." These include the oligarchs who presently govern Russia, China, Hungary, Venezuela, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt, together comprising a de facto league of evildoers. Put simply, according to Kagan, conservatives -- some? many? most? -- are themselves anti-American.

Gazing into the crystal ball that served him so well when he endorsed preventive war to topple Saddam Hussein, Kagan writes that in the days to come "the binary distinction between liberal and non-liberal governments is going to be all that matters." Furthermore, unless the camp of liberal democracies -- necessarily led by the United States -- set aside their differences to mount a great crusade to stem the authoritarian tide, evil will surely triumph.

Robert Kagan's Jungle Book of Forever War The Blob and the Hell of Good Intentions

Obstructing that crusade are American party-poopers who are "today insisting that we pull back from confronting the great authoritarian powers rising in Eurasia." In other words, as is so often the case with Kagan, it's the 1930s all over again. Once more, isolationists making common cause with the evildoers are mucking things up. For proof on that score, he writes, one need look no further than the actions of the Trump administration.

Kagan's essay invites the following brief reflections.

First, please note that "The Strongmen Strike Back" dusts off and repackages a line of argument made by Kagan and other neoconservatives after 9/11 to promote a Global War on Terrorism. What we have here is bad whisky sporting a new label. Perhaps readers are not supposed to notice, but at least some will recall the disastrous consequences that ensued when Kagan last demanded concerted action to purge the world of evil.

Second, Kagan's insistence on assigning a common label to the regimes of Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping, Nicolas Maduro, Mohammed bin Salman, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, et al‚ -- suggesting that they are devoted to a common cause and subscribe to a common worldview -- is sheer nonsense. Contemporary authoritarianism does not derive from or express anything remotely like an ideology. Its origins are as disparate as its manifestations. It is not one thing, but many things.

Third, Kagan ignores Tip O'Neill's famous adage that "all politics are local." Kagan prefers to treat all politics as cosmic. Taking this approach makes it unnecessary to take into account local context and local history, not to mention previous ill-advised policies of the United States, which have contributed in no small measure to the dysfunction evident in places like Venezuela and Saudi Arabia.

Fourth, to say that the contemporary world is binary is as misleading as to describe the world of the 1950s and 1960s was bipolar. Such a false construct paves the way for all sorts of mischief. The starting point of wisdom is to acknowledge the multi-polarity of the international order.

Fifth, Kagan is simply off base in suggesting that the actions of the Trump administration somehow express contemporary conservatism. Trump himself is many things -- narcissistic, impulsive, lazy, ill-informed -- but he is not a conservative. As for his administration, the label that fits best is incoherent.

Few can match Robert Kagan's talent for handing down weighty pronouncements that convey an appearance of insight and authority. Yet time and again, events have proven him wrong. With this latest essay, his record will remain intact.

Andrew J. Bacevich is 's writer-at-large.



Taras 77 March 28, 2019 at 11:44 pm

I do not think kagan's "ideas" even rise to the level of bad whiskey. His views were and remain absolute and utter nonsense.

He is like most neo cons, they have an unbroken track record of never being right on issues but refuse to admit shame or embarrassment. They just keep pumping out the garbage and when this garbage is put into action as in libya, irag, syria, it has tragic consequences.

James from Durham , , March 29, 2019 at 8:38 am
Act now or all is lost?

You know not to believe that from the double glazing sales man at your door. Why accept it from a political theorist?

Curt , , March 29, 2019 at 8:39 am
Liberal Democracies = rule of Money-Power. Kagan is a tool of Money-Power, he spouts its propaganda for pay. If he was so concerned about authoritarian states for the past 40 years, then why has he not been trying to stop the rise of China?

Hello it's because US Money-Power has been making money off the rise of China.

pax , , March 29, 2019 at 8:44 am
The neocons do not have to be right from an American perspective. They just have to be right from what Deep State wants. In a hundred years, one wonders what historians will say about this period?
Gerard , , March 29, 2019 at 10:58 am
As an old Cold Warrior myself, who served this country back in the days when there really was a powerful, totalitarian, expansionist Evil Empire, and it really did represent an existential threat to what used to be but no longer are the values of what used to be but no longer is the functional democracy of the United States, I don't know whether to laugh or cry at the blathering of arrogant fools like Robert Kagan

Who now appear to be in an ideological majority within the American Ruling Class and are blithely steering this nation and its clueless citizenry toward karmic disaster.

MC , , March 29, 2019 at 12:25 pm
One of the worst parts of Kagan's argument was his long targeted attack on Jeanne Kirkpatrick's now-40-year-old "Dictatorships and Double Standards" article, where Jeanne (a fervent anti-communist) argued that there was a difference between merely authoritarian dictators, like in Brazil, that allowed some room for a free market, an independent family life, and moderate individual freedoms, and totalitarian systems like the Soviet Union, Cuba, and Brazil.

Obviously some of Jeanne's fine and sensible distinctions were open for debate, but Kagan takes a wrecking ball to the whole project by defining any socio-political system in which there are commonly shared ideas and patterns as ideological, and therefore "authoritarian" = "totalitarian". He seriously argues that 14th Century Europe was as rigidly ideologically controlled as the Soviet Union.

For Kagan, it's totalitarianism all the way down, except apparently when it's liberal democracy. Why isn't the ideology of liberal democracy, which has its own bedrock principles in terms of the free market and political equality suffused in every space, also "totalitarian"? He conveniently sidestepped this.

Likbez, March 29, 2019 at 14:25 pm

@Taras 77 March 28, 2019 at 11:44 pm

I do not think Kagan's "ideas" even rise to the level of bad whiskey. His views were and remain absolute and utter nonsense.

Kagan is a mediocrity that's for sure. But he is a very dangerous mediocrity ready for the money he gets from MIC to fire up the whole would. Actually like his wife Victoria Nuland. Who probably is a driving force in this neocon family and who orchestrated far-right coup d'état in Ukraine (and after that this guy is still able to talk about evils of authoritarian rulers -- what a hypocrite)

Like Max Book this fat guy is good for nothing and as Tucker suggested should probably paint houses for living, or work as a copyeditor.

But due to his father his discovered quite early that being a warmonger, a MIC lobbyist means money he can never earn elsewhere.

So he gets MSM megaphone to spread his nonsense as just another type of "national security parasites".

To understand the genesis of his writings you need to understand that he was hell bent on "Full spectrum dominance" doctrine for a long time, at least since Reagan administration when he was a speechwriter for Secretary of State George Shultz

So all his blabbering about authoritarism (which he redefines to his taste, much like neoliberals redefine the word "freedom") just hide the lust for the world domination. He is a quintessential globalist and imperialist.

This chickenhawk actually was one of the founding member of PNAC and an advocate for Iraq war. He probably should have commit hara-kiri after Iraq fiasco, but chickenhawks have no honor.

[Mar 30, 2019] It is too bad that there has been no investigation into Victoria Nuland's role in Ukraine's 2014 revolution

Mar 30, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Anon1970 March 28, 2019 at 1:44 pm

It is too bad that there has been no investigation into Victoria Nuland's role in Ukraine's 2014 revolution. The ouster of the corrupt Russian leaning administration and its replacement by a new gang of thieves who were more pro West with neo-Nazi sympathies led to the Ukrainian civil war and the takeover of Crimea by Russia. Although Russia's nominal GNP per capita remains low vs industrial countries, it remains a military superpower.

[Mar 30, 2019] Bacevich on despicable propagandist of Iraq war, chichenhawk Robert Kogan by Andrew J. Bacevich

This mediocrity does not deserve such a long article but still. First of all Kagan should commit hara-kiri long ago for this pushing for Iraq invasion. But such personalities have no honor. It's all about money for them.
This MIC stooge even does not understand what authoritarism means. It serves his as a label for people that neoconservatives do not like -- politician that deviate from neoliberal consensus. Authoritarian personality is a personality tendency which in various degrees present in almost every man. Triats include defence to authority, "kiss up, kick down" behaviour patterns, etc. So paradoxically authoritarians should support the role of the USA as the global hegemon -- wet dream of Kogan and his fellow neoconservatives. So the current Brazil president is in this sense authoritarian . But Putin is not.
Thos people who object the dominant role of the USA are by definition rebels, not authoritarians. And karag behvaes like a typical imperist condidering of socal form different from natural security state current existing in the USA (which recreated Russiagate and NeoMcCartyism hustria) inferior. This MIC stooge even thing that the USA is a democracy (it is probably democracy to top top0.01$ only)
Such people naturally tend to flock to Republican Party in the USA. Like neoliberal did with the work "freedom" Kagan creates his own definition. For example in no way Putin is an authoritarian as he essentially depends on the consensus with Russian elite to govern.
Mar 29, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Originally from: Robert Kagan's Cloudy Crystal Ball The American Conservative By Andrew J. Bacevich

He now perceives global authoritarianism as today's greatest challenge, with conservatives on the wrong side of the fight.

Once labeled a neoconservative, Robert Kagan is actually a Friedmanite. Like Thomas Friedman of The New York Times, Kagan specializes in elegant oversimplification, regularly producing artfully constructed polemics that are superficially persuasive but substantively misleading. Taken seriously, they can even be dangerous.

Friedman describes himself as "a big believer in the idea of the super-story, the notion that we all carry around with us a big lens, a big framework, through which we look at the world." Fastening onto some big framework enables Friedman, in his words, to "order events, and decide what is important and what is not." Choose the correct -- or most convenient -- big framework and everything becomes clear. This describes Kagan's approach as well, along with a tendency to deploy act-now-or-all-is-lost rhetoric.

Certain policy types have a particular susceptibility to super-stories that purport to explain everything. It liberates them from actually having to think. For those eager to remain au courant, it signals which way the herd is heading.

Prominent examples of this recurring phenomenon include George Kennan's savvy marketing of "containment" as a basis of U.S. grand strategy at the outset of the Cold War and Francis Fukuyama's impeccably timed revelation four decades later as the Cold War was winding down that history itself had ended.

Kagan's latest entry into this field is an immensely long essay that recently appeared in The Washington Post. The title of that essay is "The Strongmen Strike Back." While embroidering his argument with several thousand words of filler, Kagan helpfully states his thesis with a single compact sentence: "Today, authoritarianism has emerged as the greatest challenge facing the liberal democratic world -- a profound ideological, as well as strategic, challenge."

Put simply, the world is once more divided into two camps. It's us vs. them, white hats against black hats, good besieged by evil, just like the old days.

Furthermore, Kagan charges, too many American conservatives are choosing to align with the wrong side. It is becoming increasingly difficult, he writes, to distinguish between conservative efforts "to protect political and cultural traditions," on the one hand, and "the protection of white Christian cultural ascendancy" on the other. While stopping just shy of issuing a blanket indictment, Kagan contends that growing numbers of conservatives reject the principles enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and "find themselves in sympathy with the world's staunchest anti-American leaders." These include the oligarchs who presently govern Russia, China, Hungary, Venezuela, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt, together comprising a de facto league of evildoers. Put simply, according to Kagan, conservatives -- some? many? most? -- are themselves anti-American.

Gazing into the crystal ball that served him so well when he endorsed preventive war to topple Saddam Hussein, Kagan writes that in the days to come "the binary distinction between liberal and non-liberal governments is going to be all that matters." Furthermore, unless the camp of liberal democracies -- necessarily led by the United States -- set aside their differences to mount a great crusade to stem the authoritarian tide, evil will surely triumph.

Robert Kagan's Jungle Book of Forever War The Blob and the Hell of Good Intentions

Obstructing that crusade are American party-poopers who are "today insisting that we pull back from confronting the great authoritarian powers rising in Eurasia." In other words, as is so often the case with Kagan, it's the 1930s all over again. Once more, isolationists making common cause with the evildoers are mucking things up. For proof on that score, he writes, one need look no further than the actions of the Trump administration.

Kagan's essay invites the following brief reflections.

First, please note that "The Strongmen Strike Back" dusts off and repackages a line of argument made by Kagan and other neoconservatives after 9/11 to promote a Global War on Terrorism. What we have here is bad whisky sporting a new label. Perhaps readers are not supposed to notice, but at least some will recall the disastrous consequences that ensued when Kagan last demanded concerted action to purge the world of evil.

Second, Kagan's insistence on assigning a common label to the regimes of Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping, Nicolas Maduro, Mohammed bin Salman, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, et al‚ -- suggesting that they are devoted to a common cause and subscribe to a common worldview -- is sheer nonsense. Contemporary authoritarianism does not derive from or express anything remotely like an ideology. Its origins are as disparate as its manifestations. It is not one thing, but many things.

Third, Kagan ignores Tip O'Neill's famous adage that "all politics are local." Kagan prefers to treat all politics as cosmic. Taking this approach makes it unnecessary to take into account local context and local history, not to mention previous ill-advised policies of the United States, which have contributed in no small measure to the dysfunction evident in places like Venezuela and Saudi Arabia.

Fourth, to say that the contemporary world is binary is as misleading as to describe the world of the 1950s and 1960s was bipolar. Such a false construct paves the way for all sorts of mischief. The starting point of wisdom is to acknowledge the multi-polarity of the international order.

Fifth, Kagan is simply off base in suggesting that the actions of the Trump administration somehow express contemporary conservatism. Trump himself is many things -- narcissistic, impulsive, lazy, ill-informed -- but he is not a conservative. As for his administration, the label that fits best is incoherent.

Few can match Robert Kagan's talent for handing down weighty pronouncements that convey an appearance of insight and authority. Yet time and again, events have proven him wrong. With this latest essay, his record will remain intact.

Andrew J. Bacevich is 's writer-at-large.


Taras 77 March 28, 2019 at 11:44 pm

I do not think kagan's "ideas" even rise to the level of bad whiskey. His views were and remain absolute and utter nonsense.

He is like most neo cons, they have an unbroken track record of never being right on issues but refuse to admit shame or embarrassment. They just keep pumping out the garbage and when this garbage is put into action as in libya, irag, syria, it has tragic consequences.

James from Durham , says: March 29, 2019 at 8:38 am
Act now or all is lost?

You know not to believe that from the double glazing sales man at your door. Why accept it from a political theorist?

Curt , says: March 29, 2019 at 8:39 am
Liberal Democracies = rule of Money-Power. Kagan is a tool of Money-Power, he spouts its propaganda for pay. If he was so concerned about authoritarian states for the past 40 years, then why has he not been trying to stop the rise of China?

Hello it's because US Money-Power has been making money off the rise of China.

pax , says: March 29, 2019 at 8:44 am
The neocons do not have to be right from an American perspective. They just have to be right from what Deep State wants. In a hundred years, one wonders what historians will say about this period?
Gerard , says: March 29, 2019 at 10:58 am
As an old Cold Warrior myself, who served this country back in the days when there really was a powerful, totalitarian, expansionist Evil Empire, and it really did represent an existential threat to what used to be but no longer are the values of what used to be but no longer is the functional democracy of the United States, I don't know whether to laugh or cry at the blathering of arrogant fools like Robert Kagan

Who now appear to be in an ideological majority within the American Ruling Class and are blithely steering this nation and its clueless citizenry toward karmic disaster.

MC , says: March 29, 2019 at 12:25 pm
One of the worst parts of Kagan's argument was his long targeted attack on Jeanne Kirkpatrick's now-40-year-old "Dictatorships and Double Standards" article, where Jeanne (a fervent anti-communist) argued that there was a difference between merely authoritarian dictators, like in Brazil, that allowed some room for a free market, an independent family life, and moderate individual freedoms, and totalitarian systems like the Soviet Union, Cuba, and Brazil.

Obviously some of Jeanne's fine and sensible distinctions were open for debate, but Kagan takes a wrecking ball to the whole project by defining any socio-political system in which there are commonly shared ideas and patterns as ideological, and therefore "authoritarian" = "totalitarian". He seriously argues that 14th Century Europe was as rigidly ideologically controlled as the Soviet Union.

For Kagan, it's totalitarianism all the way down, except apparently when it's liberal democracy. Why isn't the ideology of liberal democracy, which has its own bedrock principles in terms of the free market and political equality suffused in every space, also "totalitarian"? He conveniently sidestepped this.

Likbez, March 29, 2019 at 14:25 pm

@Taras 77 March 28, 2019 at 11:44 pm

I do not think Kagan's "ideas" even rise to the level of bad whiskey. His views were and remain absolute and utter nonsense.

Kagan is a mediocrity that's for sure. But he is a very dangerous mediocrity ready for the money he gets from MIC to fire up the whole would. Actually like his wife Victoria Nuland. Who probably is a driving force in this neocon family and who orchestrated far-right coup d'état in Ukraine (and after that this guy is still able to talk about evils of authoritarian rulers -- what a hypocrite)

Like Max Book this fat guy is good for nothing and as Tucker suggested should probably paint houses for living, or work as a copyeditor.

But due to his father his discovered quite early that being a warmonger, a MIC lobbyist means money he can never earn elsewhere.

So he gets MSM megaphone to spread his nonsense as just another type of "national security parasites".

To understand the genesis of his writings you need to understand that he was hell bent on "Full spectrum dominance" doctrine for a long time, at least since Reagan administration when he was a speechwriter for Secretary of State George Shultz

So all his blabbering about authoritarism (which he redefines to his taste, much like neoliberals redefine the word "freedom") just hide the lust for the world domination. He is a quintessential globalist and imperialist.

This chickenhawk actually was one of the founding member of PNAC and an advocate for Iraq war. He probably should have commit hara-kiri after Iraq fiasco, but chickenhawks have no honor.

[Mar 29, 2019] No joke Comedian Zelenskiy leads race to Ukrainian presidency

Mar 29, 2019 | www.youtube.com

netnema , 3 weeks ago

So the question is: what's better proven corruption or a new face in politics? And the best answer is, "Politicians and diapers should be changed often and for the same reason" - Mark Twain

FRUEDyo , 1 week ago

He is bringing hope and that's the point!

yagle hoole , 3 weeks ago

Don't laugh. Professional comedians are actually very intelligent. They have excellent memory -- I know, think very very quick on their feet, and deal with hecklers of all stripes all the time. Such attributes are handy in time of crisis. But don't expect them to crack a joke once they're elected. Look at Al Franken. Having been elected to and served in the Senate, he's yet to say anything funny in public, lest people not take him seriously.

bloodaxe , 1 week ago

Ukraine's Trump

[Mar 25, 2019] Nuland role in Russiagate

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... The transfer of Christopher Steele's first dossier memo was personally facilitated by Victoria Nuland, the assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs. Nuland gave approval for FBI agent Michael Gaeta to travel to London to obtain the memo from Steele. The memo may have passed directly from her to FBI leadership. Secretary of State John Kerry was also given a copy. ..."
"... Steele was already well-known within the State Department. Following Steele's involvement in the FIFA scandal investigation, he began to provide reports informally to the State Department. The reports were written for a "private client" but were "shared widely within the U.S. State Department, and sent up to Secretary of State John Kerry and Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, who was in charge of the U.S. response to Putin's annexation of Crimea and covert invasion of eastern Ukraine," the Guardian reported. ..."
Mar 25, 2019 | www.theepochtimes.com

Originally from: Spygate The True Story of Collusion [Infographic]

The State Department, with its many contacts within foreign governments, became a conduit for the flow of information. The transfer of Christopher Steele's first dossier memo was personally facilitated by Victoria Nuland, the assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs. Nuland gave approval for FBI agent Michael Gaeta to travel to London to obtain the memo from Steele. The memo may have passed directly from her to FBI leadership. Secretary of State John Kerry was also given a copy.

Steele was already well-known within the State Department. Following Steele's involvement in the FIFA scandal investigation, he began to provide reports informally to the State Department. The reports were written for a "private client" but were "shared widely within the U.S. State Department, and sent up to Secretary of State John Kerry and Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, who was in charge of the U.S. response to Putin's annexation of Crimea and covert invasion of eastern Ukraine," the Guardian reported.

Nuland passed on parts of the Steele dossier to the FBI. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

In July 2016, when the FBI wanted to send Gaeta to visit Steele in London, the bureau sought permission from the office of Nuland, who provided this version of events during a Feb. 4, 2018, appearance on CBS's "Face the Nation":

"In the middle of July, when [Steele] was doing this other work and became concerned, he passed two to four pages of short points of what he was finding and our immediate reaction to that was, this is not in our purview. This needs to go to the FBI if there is any concern here that one candidate or the election as a whole might be influenced by the Russian Federation. That's something for the FBI to investigate."

Steele also met with Jonathan Winer, a former deputy assistant secretary of state for international law enforcement and former special envoy for Libya. Steele and Winer had known each other since at least 2010. In an opinion article in The Washington Post, Winer wrote the following:

"In September 2016, Steele and I met in Washington and discussed the information now known as the 'dossier.' Steele's sources suggested that the Kremlin not only had been behind the hacking of the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign but also had compromised Trump and developed ties with his associates and campaign."

In a strange turn of events, Winer also received a separate dossier , very similar to Steele's, from long-time Clinton confidant Sidney Blumenthal. This "second dossier" had been compiled by another longtime Clinton operative, former journalist Cody Shearer, and echoed claims made in the Steele dossier. Winer then met with Steele in late September 2016 and gave Steele a copy of the "second dossier." Steele went on to share this second dossier with the FBI, which may have used it to corroborate his dossier.

Winer passed on memos from Christopher Steele to Victoria Nuland. (State Department)

Other foreign officials also used conduits into the State Department. Alexander Downer, Australia's high commissioner to the UK, reportedly funneled his conversation with Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos -- later used as a reason to open the FBI's counterintelligence investigation -- directly to the U.S. Embassy in London.

"The Downer details landed with the embassy's then-chargé d'affaires, Elizabeth Dibble, who previously served as a principal deputy assistant secretary in Mrs. Clinton's State Department," The Wall Street Journal's Kimberley Strassel wrote in a May 31, 2018, article .

If true, this would mean that neither Australian intelligence nor the Australian government alerted the FBI to the Papadopoulos information. What happened with the Downer details, and to whom they were ultimately relayed, remains unknown.

Curiously, details surprisingly similar to the Papadopoulos–Downer conversation show up in the first memo written by Steele on June 20, 2016:

"A dossier of compromising information on Hillary Clinton has been collated by the Russian Intelligence Services over many years and mainly comprises bugged conversations she had on various visits to Russia and intercepted phone calls. It has not yet been distributed abroad, including to Trump."

[Mar 23, 2019] If Boyko wins, the Outlaw US Empire's Ukrainian project will be finished

Mar 23, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 , Mar 22, 2019 2:02:42 PM | link

OT--FYI--OT

Russia's PM meets with Ukrainian presidential candidate Boyko and discuss many items of interest.

I wonder if Boyko will be arrested upon his return?

TASS has several additional short items related to this meeting and the upcoming election in Ukraine of March 31. IMO, if Boyko wins, the Outlaw US Empire's Ukrainian project will be concluded.

What he discussed with Medvedev and Gazprom's Miller is of extreme importance to Ukraine's economy and are important election issues.

[Mar 22, 2019] I wonder what Mr. Kagan has to say now about authoritarian regimes?!

Mar 22, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

As usual, Trump made the announcement of recognizing Israel's claim to the Golan Heights without any consultation with any of the relevant administration officials...

President Donald Trump's tweet on Thursday recognizing the Golan Heights as Israeli territory surprised members of his own Middle East peace team, the State Department, and Israeli officials.

U.S. diplomats and White House aides had believed the Golan Heights issue would be front and center at next week's meetings between Trump and Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the White House. But they were unprepared for any presidential announcement this week.

No formal U.S. process or executive committees were initiated to review the policy before Trump's decision, and the diplomats responsible for implementing the policy were left in the dark.

Even the Israelis, who have advocated for this move for years, were stunned at the timing of Trump's message.

After more than two years of watching Trump's impulsive and reckless "governing" style, it doesn't come as a surprise to anyone that he makes these decisions without advance warning. There is no evidence that Trump ever thinks anything through, and so he probably sees no reason to tell anyone in advance what he is going to do. Trump almost never bothers consulting with the people who will be responsible for carrying out his policies and dealing with the international fallout, and that is probably why so many of his policy decisions end up being exceptionally poor ones. The substance of most of Trump's foreign policy decisions was never likely to be good, but the lack of an organized policy process on major decisions makes those decisions even more haphazard and chaotic than they would otherwise be.

There is absolutely no upside for the United States in endorsing illegal Israeli claims to the Golan Heights. It is a cynical political stunt intended to boost Netanyahu and Likud's fortunes in the upcoming election, and it is also a cynical stunt aimed at shoring up Trump's support from Republican "pro-Israel" voters and donors.

Kouros , March 21, 2019 at 11:39 pm

I wonder what Mr. Kagan has to say now about "authoritarian" regimes?!

[Mar 20, 2019] John McCain Associate Provided Dossier to Obama National Security Council Breitbart

Mar 20, 2019 | www.breitbart.com

David Kramer, a long-time advisor to late Senator John McCain, revealed that he met with two Obama administration officials to inquire about whether the anti-Trump dossier authored by former British spy Christopher Steele was being taken seriously.

In one case, Kramer said that he personally provided a copy of the dossier to Obama National Security Council official Celeste Wallander.

In a deposition on Dec. 13, 2017 that was recently posted online, Kramer said that McCain specifically asked him in early December 2016 to meet about the dossier with Wallander and Victoria Nuland, a senior official in John Kerry's State Department. Senator McCain asked me to meet with both of them to see if this was being taken seriously in the government," Kramer said.

"And Senator McCain asked you to meet with them?" Kramer was asked to clarify.

"Yes, just to see if this was being taken seriously. I think he wanted to do -- this was his kind of due diligence before he went to Director Comey."

Kramer testified that in his conversations with Nuland and Wallander he was told by both of them that each were aware of the dossier and that Nuland "thought Steele was a serious person."

Kramer revealed that he gave a copy of the dossier to Wallander, who was familiar with the contents but did not have a copy.

"I had a subsequent conversation with Ms. Wallander in which I gave her a copy of the document. That was probably around New Year's," he said.

"She had not seen it herself until I had shown it to her," Kramer added. "She had heard about it. And she didn't know the status of it."

In the same testimony, the McCain associate revealed that he held a meeting about the dossier with a reporter from BuzzFeed News who he says snapped photos of the controversial document without Kramer's permission when he left the room to go to the bathroom. That meeting was held at the McCain Institute office in Washington, Kramer stated.

BuzzFeed infamously published Steele's full dossier on January 10, 2017 setting off a firestorm of news media coverage about the document.

Prior to his death, McCain admitted to personally handing the dossier to then-FBI Director James Comey but he refused repeated requests for comment about whether he had a role in providing the dossier to BuzzFeed, including numerous inquiries sent to his office by this reporter.

In his book published last year, McCain maintained he had an "obligation" to pass the dossier charges against Trump to Comey and he would even do it again. "Anyone who doesn't like it can go to hell," McCain exclaimed.

Kramer, meanwhile, also said that he briefed others reporters on the dossier contents, including CNN's Carl Bernstein, in an effort to have the anti-Trump charges verified.

The same day BuzzFeed released the full dossier, CNN first reported the leaked information that the controversial contents of the dossier were presented during classified briefings inside classified documents presented one week earlier to then-President Obama and President-elect Trump.

Kramer said that he believed McCain was sought out in order to provide credibility to the dossier claims.

"I think they felt a senior Republican was better to be the recipient of this rather than a Democrat because if it were a Democrat, I think that the view was that it would have been dismissed as a political attack," Kramer stated.

The controversial Fusion GPS firm hired Steele to do the anti-Trump work that resulted in the compilation of the dossier. Fusion GPS was paid for its anti-Trump work by Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign and the Democratic National Committee via the Perkins Coie law firm.

Kramer's testimony sheds a new light on the role of the Obama administration in disseminating the largely-discredited dossier that was reportedly involved in the FBI's initial investigation into the Trump campaign and unsubstantiated claims of Russian collusion. Also Comey cited the dossier as evidence in a successful FISA application to obtain a warrant to conduct surveillance on Carter Page, a former adviser to President Trump's 2016 campaign. The testimony also revealed how McCain was utilized to give the wild dossier charges a credibility boost.

Nuland and dossier

Nuland's specific role in the dossier episode has been the subject of some controversy for her.

In their book , "Russian Roulette: The Inside Story of Putin's War on America and the Election of Donald Trump," authors and reporters by Michael Isikoff and David Corn write that Nuland gave the green light for the FBI to first meet with Steele regarding his dossier's claims. It was at that meeting that Steele initially reported his dossier charges to the FBI, the book relates.

Steele sought out Rome-based FBI Special Agent Michael Gaeta, with whom he had worked on a previous case. Before Gaeta met with Steele on July 5, 2016, the book relates that the FBI first secured the support of Nuland, who at the time was assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs specializing in Russia.

Regarding the arrangements for Steele's initial meeting with the FBI about the dossier claims, Isikoff and Corn report:

There were a few hoops Gaeta had to jump through. He was assigned to the U.S. embassy in Rome. The FBI checked with Victoria Nuland's office at the State Department : Do you support this meeting ? Nuland, having found Steele's reports on Ukraine to have been generally credible, gave the green light.

Within a few days, on July 5, Gaeta arrived and headed to Steele's office near Victoria station . Steele handed him a copy of the report. Gaeta, a seasoned FBI agent, started to read . He turned white. For a while, Gaeta said nothing . Then he remarked, "I have to report this to headquarters."

The book documents that Nuland previously received Steele's reports on the Ukrainian crisis and had been familiar with Steele's general work.

Nuland faced confirmation questions prior to her appointment as assistant secretary of state over her reported role in revising controversial Obama administration talking points about the 2012 Benghazi terrorist attacks. Her reported changes sought to protect Clinton's State Department from accusations that it failed to adequately secure the woefully unprotected U.S. Special Mission in Benghazi.

Nuland's name surfaced in a flurry of news media reports last year about the dossier and Kerry's State Department.

Sidney Blumenthal

An extensive New Yorker profile of Steele named another former official from Kerry's State Department for alleged involvement in circulating the dossier. The magazine reported that Kerry's chief of staff at the State Department, John Finer, obtained the contents of a two-page summary of the dossier and eventually decided to share the questionable document with Kerry.

Finer received the dossier summary from Jonathan M. Winer, the Obama State Department official who acknowledged regularly interfacing and exchanging information with Steele, according to the report. Winer previously conceded that he shared the dossier summary with Nuland.

After his name surfaced in news media reports related to probes by House Republicans into the dossier, Winer authored a Washington Post oped in which he conceded that while he was working at the State Department he exchanged documents and information with Steele.

Winer further acknowledged that while at the State Department, he shared anti-Trump material with Steele passed to him by longtime Clinton confidant Sidney Blumenthal, whom Winer described as an "old friend." Winer wrote that the material from Blumenthal – which Winer in turn gave to Steele – originated with Cody Shearer, who is a controversial figure long tied to various Clinton scandals.

Nuland, Winer Give Conflicting Accounts

There are seeming discrepancies between Winer and Nuland about actions taken involving the dossier.

Nuland described in a Politico podcast interview what she claimed was her reaction when she was presented with Steele's dossier information at the State Department.

She said that she offered advice to "those who were interfacing with" Steele, immediately telling the intermediary or intermediaries that Steele "should get this information to the FBI." She further explained that a career employee at the State Department could not get involved with the dossier charges since such actions could violate the Hatch Act, which prevents employees in the executive branch of the federal government from engaging in certain kinds of political activities.

In a second interview, this one with CBS's Face The Nation, Nuland also stated that her "immediate" reaction was to refer Steele to the FBI.

Here is a transcript of the relevant section of her February 5 interview with Susan B. Glasser, who described Nuland as "my friend" and referred to her by her nickname "Toria":

Glasser: When did you first hear about his dossier?

Nuland: I first heard -- and I didn't know who his client was until much later, until 2017, I think, when it came out. I first heard that he had done work for a client asserting these linkages -- I think it was late July, something like that.

Glasser: That's very interesting. And you would have taken him seriously just because you knew that he knew what he was talking about on Russia?

Nuland: What I did was say that this is about U.S. politics, and not the work of -- not the business of the State Department, and certainly not the business of a career employee who is subject to the Hatch Act, which requires that you stay out of politics. So, my advice to those who were interfacing with him was that he should get this information to the FBI, and that they could evaluate whether they thought it was credible.

Glasser: Did you ever talk about it with anyone else higher up at the department? With Secretary Kerry or anybody else?

Nuland: Secretary Kerry was also aware. I think he's on the record and he had the same advice.

Nuland stated that Kerry "was also aware" of the dossier, but she did not describe how he was made aware. She made clear that she told "those who were interfacing" with Steele to go to the FBI since any State Department involvement could violate the Hatch Act.

Her Politico podcast interview was not the only time she claimed that her reaction was to refer Steele to the FBI.

On Face The Nation on February 4, Nuland engaged in the following exchange in which she stated her "immediate" reaction was to refer Steele to the FBI (emphasis added):

MARGARET BRENNAN: The dossier.

VICTORIA NULAND: The dossier, he passed two to four pages of short points of what he was finding, and our immediate reaction to that was, "This is not in our purview. This needs to go to the FBI, if there is any concern here that one candidate or the election as a whole might be influenced by the Russian federation. That's something for the FBI to investigate."

And that was our reaction when we saw this. It's not our -- we can't evaluate this. And frankly, if every member of the campaign who the Russians tried to approach and tried to influence had gone to the FBI as well in real time, we might not be in the mess we're in today.

Nuland gave the two interviews after her name started surfacing in news media reports involving Kerry's State Department and the dossier. Her name also came up in relation to a criminal referral of Steele to the Justice Department in the form of a letter authored last year by Sen. Chuck Grassley, who at the time chaired the Senate Judiciary Committee, and Lindsey Graham (R-SC).

The Grassley-Graham criminal referral contains redacted information that Steele received information from someone in the State Department, who in turn had been in contact with a "foreign sub-source" who was in touch with a redacted name described as a "friend of the Clintons."

Numerous media reports have since stated that the source of information provided to the State Department that was in turn passed on to Steele was Cody Shearer, a controversial figure tied to the Clintons who is also an associate of longtime Clinton friend Sidney Blumenthal. According to sources who spoke to CNN, Shearer's information was passed from Blumenthal to Winer, who at the time was a special State Department envoy for Libya working under Kerry. Winer says that Kerry personally recruited him to work at the State Department.

It is Winer's version of events that seems to conflict with Nuland's.

In an oped published in the Washington Post, Winer identified Nuland as the State Department official with whom he shared Steele's information. Winer writes that Nuland's reaction was that "she felt that the secretary of state needed to be made aware of this material." He does not relate any further reaction from Nuland.

Winer wrote in the Washington Post (emphasis added):

In the summer of 2016, Steele told me that he had learned of disturbing information regarding possible ties between Donald Trump, his campaign and senior Russian officials. He did not provide details but made clear the information involved "active measures," a Soviet intelligence term for propaganda and related activities to influence events in other countries.

In September 2016, Steele and I met in Washington and discussed the information now known as the "dossier." Steele's sources suggested that the Kremlin not only had been behind the hacking of the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign but also had compromised Trump and developed ties with his associates and campaign.

I was allowed to review, but not to keep, a copy of these reports to enable me to alert the State Department. I prepared a two-page summary and shared it with Nuland, who indicated that, like me, she felt that the secretary of state needed to be made aware of this material.

That was the extent of Winer's description of Nuland's reaction upon being presented with Steele's dossier claims. Nuland's public claim that her "immediate" response was to refer Steele to the FBI since State involvement could violate the Hatch Act seems to conflict with the only reaction that Winer relates from Nuland – that she felt Kerry should be made aware of the dossier information.

In Winer's Washington Post oped, he writes that Steele had a larger relationship with the State Department, passing over 100 reports relating to Russia to the U.S. government agency through Winer. Winer wrote that Nuland found Steele's reports to be "useful" and asked Winer to "continue to send them."

He wrote:

In 2013, I returned to the State Department at the request of Secretary of State John F. Kerry, whom I had previously served as Senate counsel. Over the years, Steele and I had discussed many matters relating to Russia. He asked me whether the State Department would like copies of new information as he developed it. I contacted Victoria Nuland, a career diplomat who was then assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, and shared with her several of Steele's reports. She told me they were useful and asked me to continue to send them. Over the next two years, I shared more than 100 of Steele's reports with the Russia experts at the State Department, who continued to find them useful. None of the reports related to U.S. politics or domestic U.S. matters, and the reports constituted a very small portion of the data set reviewed by State Department experts trying to make sense of events in Russia.

Kramer and the dossier

In his book, "The Restless Wave," McCain provided an inside account of how he says he came across the dossier.

He wrote that he was told about the claims in the document at a security conference in Canada in November 2016, where he was approached by Sir Andrew Wood, a former British ambassador to Moscow and friend of ex-British spy Christopher Steele, the author of the dossier.

McCain wrote that Wood told him Steele "had been commissioned to investigate connections between the Trump campaign and Russian agents as well as potentially compromising information about the President-elect that Putin allegedly possessed."

McCain, however, did not address the obvious question of whether he was told exactly who "commissioned" Steele to "investigate" the alleged Russian ties. The dossier was paid for by Clinton's campaign and the DNC.

McCain goes on to describe Wood as telling him Steele's work "was mostly raw, unverified intelligence, but that the author strongly believed merited a thorough examination by counterintelligence experts."

The politician says the dossier claims described to him were "too strange a scenario to believe, something out of a le Carré novel, not the kind of thing anyone has ever actually had to worry about with a new President, no matter what other concerns."

Still, McCain says he reasoned that "even a remote risk that the President of the United States might be vulnerable to Russian extortion had to be investigated."

McCain concedes Wood told him he had not actually read the dossier himself, and writes that he wasn't sure if he ever met Wood before and couldn't recall previously having a conversation with Wood. Still, McCain took Wood's word for it when Wood vouched for Steele's credibility. "Steele was a respected professional, Wood assured us, who had good Russian contacts and long experience collecting and analyzing intelligence on the Kremlin," McCain wrote.

Present at the meeting with Wood and McCain was Kramer, who McCain writes agreed to "go to London to meet Steele, confirm his credibility and report back to me."

McCain doesn't detail Kramer's visit to London beyond simply writing, "When David returned, and shared his impression that the former spy was, as Sir Andrew had vouched, a respected professional, and not to outward appearances given to hyperbole or hysteria, I agreed to receive a copy of what is now referred to as 'the dossier.'''

McCain leaves out exactly where Kramer obtained his dossier copy.

The Washington Post reported last February that Kramer received the dossier directly from Fusion GPS after McCain expressed interest in it. Those details marked the clearest indication that McCain may have known that the dossier originated with Fusion GPS, meaning that he may have knowingly passed on political material to the FBI.

Also, in a New York Times oped in January, GPS co-founders Glenn Simpson and Peter Fritch wrote that they helped McCain share their anti-Trump dossier with the Obama-era intelligence community via an unnamed "emissary."

In his own testimony, Kramer relates conversations with Simpson about the dossier.

Aaron Klein is Breitbart's Jerusalem bureau chief and senior investigative reporter. He is a New York Times bestselling author and hosts the popular weekend talk radio program, " Aaron Klein Investigative Radio ." Follow him on Twitter @AaronKleinShow. Follow him on Facebook.

[Mar 20, 2019] The Opportunity Cost of America s Disastrous Foreign Policy by Vlad Sobell

Foreign policy is no longer controlled by the President of the USA. It is controlled by the Deep state. This article is from 2015 but can easily be written about Trump administration
Notable quotes:
"... Indeed, as Putin himself had proposed in his visionary October 2011 article, the Eurasian Union could have become one of the pillars of a huge harmonized economic area stretching from Lisbon to Vladivostok and based on the EU's single-market rules (acquis communautaire). ..."
"... First and foremost, because the self-proclaimed "exceptional" power (actually, a mere "outlying island" in the Atlantic, according to the founder of geopolitics, Halford Mackinder) and its dysfunctional "deep-state" officialdom did not want it to be. How could they have permitted such a thing? How could they have allowed other countries to get on with improving the lives of their citizens without being obliged to seek Washington's approval every step of the way? ..."
"... In order to make sure that they were not side-lined, the US elites had to intervene. The Western propaganda machine started churning out all sorts of nonsense that Putin is a new Hitler who is bent on restoring the Soviet empire and who is bullying Europe, while continuing to bang on about his "increasingly autocratic rule". ..."
"... Deadly attacks by chauvinistic proxies were launched on the Russophone people in South Ossetia, Georgia in 2008 and more recently in Ukraine. ..."
"... Stuck in an Orwellian nightmare, Europe has to demonstrate its unfailing loyalty to Big Brother and go along with the view that Russia, an intrinsic and valuable part of the European mainstream both historically and culturally, represents universal evil and that the Earth will not be safe until the Federation has been dismembered and Putinism wiped out once and for all. ..."
"... Having self-destructed in two world wars, it has become an easy and even willing prey to an arrogant, ignorant and power-drunk predator that has never experienced the hardships and horrors that Europe has. ..."
"... Even more terrifying, intellectually third-rate Washington viceroys such as Victoria Nuland and the freelancing armchair warrior Senator McCain are allowed to play God with our continent. ..."
"... Indeed, the damage extends beyond the economy. By aligning with the forces of chaos – such as chauvinistic extremists in Ukraine – Washington and its Euro-vassals are corrupting the moral (and intellectual) core of the West. ..."
"... 'My Ph.D. dissertation chairman, who became a high Pentagon official assigned to wind down the Vietnam war, in answer to my question about how Washington gets Europeans to always do what Washington wants replied: "Money, we give them money." "Foreign aid?" I asked. "No, we give the European political leaders bagfuls of money. They are for sale. We bought them. They report to us." Perhaps this explains Tony Blair's $50 million fortune one year out of office'. ..."
"... "We, the [CENSORED] people, control America and the Americans know it." -- Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of [CENSORED] ..."
Mar 18, 2015 | Russia Insider

Washington is betraying the best interests of the American people through its current foreign policy... European democracy is threatened by US, not Russian, foreign policy

The avalanche of commentary since the Ukrainian crisis erupted a year ago has overshadowed any reflections on the immense forgone benefits (technically speaking, the "opportunity cost") of what might have been if Washington had been working for peace and stability instead of war and chaos.

Imagine the following: After the unraveling of the Communist bloc, Europe, in partnership with the US, had forged a new security system in which Russia was treated as a valued and equal partner – one whose interests were respected. Russia, decimated by a century of wars and Communist imperialism, would doubtless have eagerly reciprocated in kind. Most countries of the former Soviet Union would have then proceeded to build a new Eurasian structure of which Russia would have served as the natural umbrella, given its long-standing interaction with the region's diverse nations and cultures.

Indeed, as Putin himself had proposed in his visionary October 2011 article, the Eurasian Union could have become one of the pillars of a huge harmonized economic area stretching from Lisbon to Vladivostok and based on the EU's single-market rules (acquis communautaire).

The rising Far Eastern economic powerhouse, with the world's most populous country, China, at its centre, would have linked up with the world's largest economy (the EU). An enormous Eurasian production and financial bloc would have been created – one that drew primarily on secure supplies of Russian energy and other natural resources. Untold investment opportunities would have opened up in Siberia and Russia's Far East as well as in Central Asia. Hundreds of millions of people in Eurasia and elsewhere would have been lifted out of poverty. And, not least, the EU would have been refashioned as an integral part of the dynamic trans-Eurasian economy (rather than as a German-centred empire, as appears to be the case today), thereby making a major contribution to overcoming the ongoing global economic depression.

All of this was not to be, however. Why not? First and foremost, because the self-proclaimed "exceptional" power (actually, a mere "outlying island" in the Atlantic, according to the founder of geopolitics, Halford Mackinder) and its dysfunctional "deep-state" officialdom did not want it to be. How could they have permitted such a thing? How could they have allowed other countries to get on with improving the lives of their citizens without being obliged to seek Washington's approval every step of the way?

European democracy is threatened by US, not Russian, foreign policy

In order to make sure that they were not side-lined, the US elites had to intervene. The Western propaganda machine started churning out all sorts of nonsense that Putin is a new Hitler who is bent on restoring the Soviet empire and who is bullying Europe, while continuing to bang on about his "increasingly autocratic rule".

Deadly attacks by chauvinistic proxies were launched on the Russophone people in South Ossetia, Georgia in 2008 and more recently in Ukraine.

And in what is eerily reminiscent of Stalinist "bloc discipline", the EU/NATO nomenclature was ordered to implement the absurd strategy of severing the Russian economy from the EU. For their part, the cowering Eurocrats willingly obliged by imposing sanctions on Russia that, perversely, have had a negative impact on their own economies (but, let it be stressed, not that of the US). No questions raised and no public debate on the wisdom of such a strategy permitted.

Stuck in an Orwellian nightmare, Europe has to demonstrate its unfailing loyalty to Big Brother and go along with the view that Russia, an intrinsic and valuable part of the European mainstream both historically and culturally, represents universal evil and that the Earth will not be safe until the Federation has been dismembered and Putinism wiped out once and for all.

This abuse and humiliation of Europe is unparalleled. The continent that gave the world the wonders of the Antiquity, modern democracy, the industrial revolution and what is arguably the greatest tradition of philosophy, fine arts and classical music is being bullied by its oversized offspring. Having self-destructed in two world wars, it has become an easy and even willing prey to an arrogant, ignorant and power-drunk predator that has never experienced the hardships and horrors that Europe has. War and extermination camps are etched into the European DNA. America "knows" about them only from afar – and, not least, from the Hollywood entertainment industry.

Even more terrifying, intellectually third-rate Washington viceroys such as Victoria Nuland and the freelancing armchair warrior Senator McCain are allowed to play God with our continent. The so-called European "leaders" are colluding with them in plunging Europe into the abyss and thereby risking nuclear confrontation.

America, too, is a loser

But this is not just a tragedy for Europe and Eurasia. We are also witnessing the wilful misrule of America and, by default, of the entire West. Indeed, Washington is betraying the best interests of the American people through its current foreign policy. The "democracy-promoters" running Washington's foreign-policy apparatus apparently do not understand that America has nothing to lose and a lot to gain from the Eurasian economic project: the rising tide of global economic welfare would lift everyone's boats, including its own. Why should it matter to Washington if the rising tide comes from other quarters beyond its control?

Indeed, the damage extends beyond the economy. By aligning with the forces of chaos – such as chauvinistic extremists in Ukraine – Washington and its Euro-vassals are corrupting the moral (and intellectual) core of the West. If it continues to support such forces against Russia, united Europe will lose not only its backbone but its very soul. The moral consequences of this loss will be enormous and could lead to the precipitous erosion of Western democracy.

The 'autocrats' want to work with the West, not against it

US and EU leaders believe that the Russian and Chinese "autocrats" are out to destroy the West because the latter hate freedom (as George W. Bush might have put it). And hence, they argue, the autocrats must be stopped in their tracks. The simple truth is that Western leaders are too blinkered to understand that far from desiring to destroy the West, Russia and China want it to prosper so that they can work with it to everyone's benefit. Having enjoyed a privileged position over several centuries and having attained unprecedented prosperity in recent decades, the West simply cannot understand that the rest of humanity has no interest in fomenting the "clash of civilizations" but rather craves peace and stability so that it can finally improve its economic lot.

Perhaps, however, all is not yet lost. It is still possible that reason – and economic forces – will prevail and force the West to correct the errors of its ways. What we need, perhaps, more than ever is the ability to step out of the box, question our fundamental assumptions (not least about Russia and China) and find the courage to change policies that have proved disastrous. After all, critical thought, dispassionate analysis and the ability to be open to new ideas is what made the West so successful in the past. If we are to thrive once again in the future, we must resurrect these most valuable and unsurpassed assets.

Vlad Sobell teaches political economy in Prague and Berlin Europeans Look On as US Sows Discord on the Continent Wed, Nov 2

Tom Welsh

What I cannot understand is the naive belief that elected politicians would act in the interests of those whom they represent. Under what other circumstances do we see human beings act with disinterested altruism? So why would a bunch of people who have been ruthlessly selected for selfishness, arrogance, and callousness - a bunch of carefully chosen psychopaths, if you will - behave in that way?

'My Ph.D. dissertation chairman, who became a high Pentagon official assigned to wind down the Vietnam war, in answer to my question about how Washington gets Europeans to always do what Washington wants replied: "Money, we give them money." "Foreign aid?" I asked. "No, we give the European political leaders bagfuls of money. They are for sale. We bought them. They report to us." Perhaps this explains Tony Blair's $50 million fortune one year out of office'.

- Paul Craig Roberts

jabirujoe

"Washington is betraying the best interests of the American people through its current foreign policy".

Not only it's foreign policy but it's domestic policy as well. Let's call it for what it really is. The Wall Street/Corporate policy which is the driving force behind behind everything the US does

Toddrich

"We, the [CENSORED] people, control America and the Americans know it." -- Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of [CENSORED]

"When we're done with the U.S. it will shrivel up and blow away." -- Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of [CENSORED]

The welfare or future of the American people are not part of the equation.

[Mar 20, 2019] Bankrupt British Empire Keeps Pushing To Overthrow Putin

This is anold, 2015 article that is still rrrelenet today. Well written overview of British policies toward Russia
Notable quotes:
"... Lyndon LaRouche has observed that anybody acting according to this British agenda with the intention of coming out on top is a fool, since the British financial-political empire is bankrupt and its entire system is coming down. ..."
"... EU: British imperial interests are intent on destroying Prime Minister Putin's bid for the Presidency, and throwing Russia into deadly political turmoil. ..."
"... In her testimony, Diuk came off like a reincarnation of a 1950s Cold Warrior, raving against the Russian government as "authoritarian," "dictators," and so forth. She said, "The trend lines for freedom and democracy in Russia have been unremittingly negative since Vladimir Putin took power and set about the systematic construction of a representation of their interests within the state." She announced at that point that the elections would be illegitimate: "[T]he current regime will likely use the upcoming parliamentary elections in December 2011 and presidential election in March 2012 with the inevitable falsifications and manipulations, to claim the continued legitimacy of its rule." ..."
"... The British-educated Nadia Diuk is vice president of the National Endowment for Democracy, from which perch she has spread "Cold War" venom against Putin and the Russian government. ..."
"... Rafal Rohozinski and Ronald Deibert, two top profilers of the Russian Internet, noted that the Runet grew five times faster than the next fastest growing Internet region, the Middle East, in 2000-08. ..."
"... NED grant money has gone to Alexei Navalny (inset), the online "anti-corruption" activist and cult figure of the December demonstrations. Addressing crowds on the street, Navalny sounds more like Mussolini than a proponent of democracy. A Russian columnist found him reminiscent of either Hitler, or Catalina, who conspired against the Roman Republic. Shown: the Dec. 24 demonstration in Moscow. ..."
Jan 09, 2012 | http://schillerinstitute.org/russia/2012/0122_overthrow_putin.html
This article appears in the January 20, 2012 issue of Executive Intelligence Review and is reprinted with permission.

[PDF version of this article]

January 9, 2012 -Organizers of the December 2011 "anti-vote-fraud" demonstrations in Moscow have announced Feb. 4 as the date of their next street action, planned as a march around the city's Garden Ring Road on the 22nd anniversary of a mass demonstration which paved the way to the end of the Soviet Union. While there is a fluid situation within both the Russian extraparliamentary opposition layers, and the ruling circles and other Duma parties, including a process of "dialogue" between them, in which ex-Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin is playing a role, it is clear that British imperial interests are intent on-if not actually destroying Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's bid for reelection as Russia's President in the March 4 elections-casting Russia into ongoing, destructive political turmoil.

Lyndon LaRouche has observed that anybody acting according to this British agenda with the intention of coming out on top is a fool, since the British financial-political empire is bankrupt and its entire system is coming down.

Review of the events leading up to the Dec. 4, 2011 Duma elections, which the street demonstrators demanded be cancelled for fraud, shows that not only agent-of-British-influence Mikhail Gorbachov, the ex-Soviet President, but also the vast Project Democracy apparatus inside the United States, exposed by EIR in the 1980s as part of an unconstitutional "secret government,"[1] have been on full mobilization to block the current Russian leadership from continuing in power.

Project Democracy

Typical is the testimony of Nadia Diuk, vice president of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), before the Subcommittee on Europe and Eurasia of the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs last July 26. The NED is the umbrella of Project Democracy; it functions, inclusively, through the International Republican Institute (IRI, linked with the Republican Party) and the National Democratic Institute (NDI, linked with the Democratic Party, and currently headed by Madeleine Albright).

Diuk was educated at the U.K.'s Unversity of Sussex Russian studies program, and then taught at Oxford University, before coming to the U.S.A. to head up the NED's programs in Eastern Europe and Russia beginning 1990. She is married to her frequent co-author, Adrian Karatnycky of the Atlantic Institute, who headed up the private intelligence outfit Freedom House[2] for 12 years. Her role is typical of British outsourcing of key strategic operations to U.S. institutions.

EU: British imperial interests are intent on destroying Prime Minister Putin's bid for the Presidency, and throwing Russia into deadly political turmoil.

In her testimony, Diuk came off like a reincarnation of a 1950s Cold Warrior, raving against the Russian government as "authoritarian," "dictators," and so forth. She said, "The trend lines for freedom and democracy in Russia have been unremittingly negative since Vladimir Putin took power and set about the systematic construction of a representation of their interests within the state." She announced at that point that the elections would be illegitimate: "[T]he current regime will likely use the upcoming parliamentary elections in December 2011 and presidential election in March 2012 with the inevitable falsifications and manipulations, to claim the continued legitimacy of its rule."

Diuk expressed renewed hope that the disastrous 2004 Orange Revolution experiment in Ukraine could be replicated in Russia, claiming that "when the protests against authoritarian rule during Ukraine's Orange Revolution brought down the government in 2004, Russian citizens saw a vision across the border of an alternative future for themselves as a Slavic nation." She then detailed what she claimed were the Kremlin's reactions to the events in Ukraine, charging that "the leaders in the Kremlin-always the most creative innovators in the club of authoritarians-have also taken active measures to promote support of the government and undermine the democratic opposition...."

Holos Ameryky

The British-educated Nadia Diuk is vice president of the National Endowment for Democracy, from which perch she has spread "Cold War" venom against Putin and the Russian government.

While lauding "the democratic breakthroughs in the Middle East" in 2011, Diuk called on the Congress to "look to [Eastern Europe] as the source of a great wealth of experience on how the enemies of freedom are ever on the alert to assert their dominance, but also how the forces for freedom and democracy will always find a way to push back in a struggle that demands our support."

In September, Diuk chaired an NED event featuring a representative of the NED-funded Levada Center Russian polling organization, who gave an overview of the then-upcoming December 4 Duma election. Also speaking there was Russian liberal politician Vladimir Kara-Murza, who predicted in the nastiest tones that Putin will suffer the fate of President Hosni Mubarak in Egypt. In this same September period, Mikhail Gorbachov, too, was already forecasting voting irregularities and a challenge to Putin's dominance.

The NED, which has an annual budget of $100 million, sponsors dozens of "civil society" groups in Russia. Golos, the supposedly independent vote-monitoring group that declared there would be vote fraud even before the elections took place, has received NED money through the NDI since 2000. Golos had a piecework program, paying its observers a set amount of money for each reported voting irregularity. NED grant money has gone to Alexei Navalny-the online anti-corruption activist and cult figure of the December demonstrations-since 2006, when he and Maria Gaidar (daughter of the late London-trained shock therapy Prime Minister Yegor Gaidar) launched a youth debating project called "DA!" (meaning "Yes!" or standing for "Democratic Alternative"). Gorbachov's close ally Vladimir Ryzhkov, currently negotiating with Kudrin on terms of a "dialogue between the authorities and the opposition," also received NED grants to his World Movement for Democracy.

Besides George Soros's Open Society Foundations (formerly, Open Society Institute, OSI), the biggest source of funds for this meddling, including funding which was channeled through the NDI and the IRI, is the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Officially, USAID has spent $2.6 billion on programs in Russia since 1992. The current acknowledged level is around $70 million annually, of which nearly half is for "Governing Justly & Democratically" programs, another 30% for "Information" programs, and only a small fraction for things like combatting HIV and TB. On Dec. 15, Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs Philip Gordon announced that the Obama Administration would seek Congressional approval to step up this funding, with "an initiative to create a new fund to support Russian non-governmental organizations that are committed to a more pluralistic and open society."

Awaiting McFaul

White House/Pete Souza

The impending arrival in Moscow of Michael McFaul (shown here with his boss in the Oval Office), as U.S. Ambassador to Russia, is seen by many there as an escalation of Project Democracy efforts to destabilize the country.

People from various parts of the political spectrum in Russia see the impending arrival of Michael McFaul as U.S. Ambassador to Russia as an escalation in Project Democracy efforts to destabilize Russia. McFaul, who has been Barack Obama's National Security Council official for Russia, has been working this beat since the early 1990s, when he represented the NDI in Russia at the end of the Soviet period, and headed its office there.

As a Russia specialist at Stanford's Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies and Hoover Institution, as well as the Carnegie Endowment, and an array of other Russian studies think tanks, McFaul has stuck closely to the Project Democracy agenda. Financing for his research has come from the NED, the OSI, and the Smith-Richardson Foundation (another notorious agency of financier interests within the U.S. establishment). He was an editor of the 2006 book Revolution in Orange: The Origins of Ukraine's Democratic Breakthrough, containing chapters by Diuk and Karatnycky.

In his own contribution to a 2010 book titled After Putin's Russia,[3] McFaul hailed the 2004 Orange Revolution in Ukraine-which was notoriously funded and manipulated from abroad-as a triumph of "people's political power from below to resist and eventually overturn a fraudulent election."

Before coming to the NSC, one of McFaul's many positions at Stanford was co-director of the Iran Democracy Project. He has also been active in such projects as the British Henry Jackson Society which is active in the drive to overthrow the government of Syria.

The Internet Dimension

The December 2011 street demonstrations in Moscow were organized largely online. Participation rose from a few hundred on Dec. 5, the day after the election, to an estimated 20,000 people on Bolotnaya Square Dec. 10, and somewhere in the wide range of 30,000 to 120,000 on Academician Sakharov Prospect Dec. 24.

Headlong expansion of Internet access and online social networking over the past three to five years has opened up a new dimension of political-cultural warfare in Russia. An EIR investigation finds that British intelligence agencies involved in the current attempts to destabilize Russia and, in their maximum version, overthrow Putin, have been working intensively to profile online activity in Russia and find ways to expand and exploit it. Some of these projects are outsourced to think tanks in the U.S.A. and Canada, but their center is Cambridge University in the U.K.-the heart of the British Empire, home of Bertrand Russell's systems analysis and related ventures of the Cambridge Apostles.[4]

The scope of the projects goes beyond profiling, as can be seen in the Cambridge-centered network's interaction with Russian anti-corruption crusader Alexei Navalny, a central figure in the December protest rallies.

While George Soros and his OSI prioritized building Internet access in the former Soviet Union starting two decades ago, as recently as in 2008 British cyberspace specialists were complaining that the Internet was not yet efficient for political purposes in Russia. Oxford University's Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism produced a Soros-funded report in 2008, titled "The Web that Failed: How opposition politics and independent initiatives are failing on the Internet in Russia." The Oxford-Reuters authors regretted that processes like the Orange Revolution, in which online connections were crucial, had not gotten a toehold in Russia. But they quoted a 2007 report by Andrew Kuchins of the Moscow Carnegie Center, who found reason for optimism in the seven-fold increase in Russian Internet (Runet) use from 2000 to 2007. They also cited Robert Orttung of American University and the Resource Security Institute, on how Russian blogs were reaching "the most dynamic members of the youth generation" and could be used by "members of civil society" to mobilize "liberal opposition groups and nationalists."

Scarcely a year later, a report by the digital marketing firm comScore crowed that booming Internet access had led to Russia's having "the world's most engaged social networking audience." Russian Facebook use rose by 277% from 2008 to 2009. The Russia-based social networking outfit Vkontakte.ru (like Facebook) had 14.3 million visitors in 2009; Odnoklassniki.ru (like Classmates.com) had 7.8 million; and Mail.ru-My World had 6.3 million. All three of these social networking sites are part of the Mail.ru/Digital Sky Technologies empire of Yuri Milner,[5] with the individual companies registered in the British Virgin Islands and other offshore locations.

The Cambridge Security Programme

Rafal Rohozinski and Ronald Deibert, two top profilers of the Russian Internet, noted that the Runet grew five times faster than the next fastest growing Internet region, the Middle East, in 2000-08.

Two top profilers of the Runet are Ronald Deibert and Rafal Rohozinski, who assessed its status in their essay "Control and Subversion in Russian Cyberspace."[6] At the University of Toronto, Deibert is a colleague of Barry Wellman, co-founder of the International Network of Social Network Analysis (INSNA).[7] Rohozinski is a cyber-warfare specialist who ran the Advanced Network Research Group of the Cambridge Security Programme (CSP) at Cambridge University in 2002-07. Nominally ending its work, the CSP handed off its projects to an array of organizations in the OpenNet Initiative (ONI), including Rohozinski's SecDev Group consulting firm, which issues the Information Warfare Monitor.

The ONI, formally dedicated to mapping and circumventing Internet surveillance and filtering by governments, is a joint project of Cambridge (Rohozinski), the Oxford Internet Institute, the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School, and the University of Toronto.

Deibert and Rohozinski noted that the Runet grew five times faster than the next fastest growing Internet region, the Middle East, in 2000-08. They cited official estimates that 38 million Russians were going online as of 2010, of whom 60 had broadband access from home; the forecast number of Russia-based Runet users by 2012 was 80 million, out of a population of 140 million. Qualitatively, the ONI authors welcomed what they called "the rise of the Internet to the center of Russian culture and politics." On the political side, they asserted that "the Internet has eclipsed all the mass media in terms of its reach, readership, and especially in the degree of free speech and opportunity to mobilize that it provides."

This notion of an Internet-savvy core of the population becoming the focal point of Russian society is now being hyped by those who want to push the December demonstrations into a full-scale political crisis. Such writers call this segment of the population "the creative class," or "the active creative minority," which can override an inert majority of the population. The Dec. 30 issue of Vedomosti, a financial daily co-owned by the Financial Times of London, featured an article by sociologist Natalya Zubarevich, which was then publicized in "Window on Eurasia" by Paul Goble, a State Department veteran who has concentrated for decades on the potential for Russia to split along ethnic or other lines.

Zubarevich proposed that the 31% of the Russian population living in the 14 largest cities, of which 9 have undergone "post-industrial transformation," constitute a special, influential class, as against the inhabitants of rural areas (38%) and mid-sized industrial cities with an uncertain future (25%). Goble defined the big-city population as a target: "It is in this Russia that the 35 million domestic users of the Internet and those who want a more open society are concentrated."

The Case of Alexei Navalny

In the "The Web that Failed" study, Oxford-Reuters authors Floriana Fossato, John Lloyd, and Alexander Verkhovsky delved into the missing elements, in their view, of the Russian Internet. What would it take, they asked, for Runet participants to be able to "orchestrate motivation and meaningful commitments"? They quoted Julia Minder of the Russian portal Rambler, who said about the potential for "mobilization": "Blogs are at the moment the answer, but the issue is how to find a leading blogger who wants to meet people on the Internet several hours per day. Leading bloggers need to be entertaining.... The potential is there, but more often than not it is not used."

NED grant money has gone to Alexei Navalny (inset), the online "anti-corruption" activist and cult figure of the December demonstrations. Addressing crowds on the street, Navalny sounds more like Mussolini than a proponent of democracy. A Russian columnist found him reminiscent of either Hitler, or Catalina, who conspired against the Roman Republic. Shown: the Dec. 24 demonstration in Moscow.

It is difficult not to wonder if Alexei Navalny is a test-tube creation intended to fill the missing niche. This would not be the first time in recent Russian history that such a thing happened. In 1990, future neoliberal "young reformers" Anatoli Chubais and Sergei Vasilyev wrote a paper under International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) auspices, on the priorities for reform in the Soviet Union. They stated that a certain personality was missing on the Soviet scene at that time: the wealthy businessman. In their IIASA paper, Chubais and Vasilyev wrote: "We now see a figure, arising from historical non-existence: the figure of a businessman-entrepreneur, who has enough capital to bear the investment responsibility, and enough technological knowledge and willingness to support innovation."[8]

This type of person was subsequently brought into existence through the corrupt post-Soviet privatization process in Russia, becoming known as "the oligarchs." Was Navalny, similarly, synthesized as a charismatic blogger to fill the British subversive need for "mobilization"?

Online celebrity Navalny's arrest in Moscow on Dec. 5, and his speech at the Academician Sakharov Prospect rally on Dec. 24 were highlights of last month's turmoil in the Russian capital. Now 35 years old, Navalny grew up in a Soviet/Russian military family and was educated as a lawyer. In 2006, he began to be financed by NED for the DA! project (see above). Along the way-maybe through doing online day-trading, as some biographies suggest, or maybe from unknown benefactors-Navalny acquired enough money to be able to spend $40,000 (his figure) on a few shares in each of several major Russian companies with a high percentage of state ownership. This gave him minority-shareholder status, as a platform for his anti-corruption probes.

It must be understood that the web of "corruption" in Russia is the system of managing cash flows through payoffs, string-pulling, and criminal extortion, which arose out of the boost that Gorbachov's perestroika policy gave to pre-existing Soviet criminal networks in the 1980s. It then experienced a boom under darlings of London like Gaidar, who oversaw the privatization process known as the Great Criminal Revolution in the 1990s. As Russia has been integrated into an international financial order, which itself relies on criminal money flows from the dope trade and strategically motivated scams like Britain's BAE operations in the Persian Gulf, the preponderance of shady activity in the Russian economy has only increased.

Putin's governments inherited this system, and it can be ended when the commitment to monetarism, which LaRouche has identified as a fatal flaw even among genuinely pro-development Russians, is broken in Russia and worldwide. The current bankruptcy of the Trans-Atlantic City of London-Eurozone-Wall Street system means that now is the time for this to happen!

Yale Fellows

In 2010, Navalny was accepted to the Yale World Fellows Program, as one of fewer than 20 approved candidates out of over a thousand applicants. As EIR has reported, the Yale Fellows are instructed by the likes of British Foreign Office veteran Lord Mark Malloch-Brown and representatives of Soros's Open Society Foundations.[9] What's more, the World Fellows Program is funded by The Starr Foundation of Maurice R. "Hank" Greenberg, former chairman and CEO of insurance giant American International Group (AIG), the recipient of enormous Bush Jr.-Obama bailout largesse in 2008-09; Greenberg and his C.V. Starr company have a long record of facilitating "regime change" (aka coups), going back to the 1986 overthrow of President Ferdinand Marcos in the Philippines. Navalny reports that Maria Gaidar told him to try for the program, and he enjoyed recommendations from top professors at the New Economic School in Moscow, a hotbed of neoliberalism and mathematical economics. It was from New Haven that Navalny launched his anti-corruption campaign against Transneft, the Russian national oil pipeline company, specifically in relation to money movements around the new East Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline. The ESPO has just finished the first year of operation of its spur supplying Russian oil to China.

Navalny presents a split personality to the public. Online he is "Mr. Openness." He posts the full legal documentation of his corruption exposés. When his e-mail account was hacked, and his correspondence with U.S. Embassy and NED officials about funding him was made public, Navalny acknowledged that the e-mails were genuine. He tries to disarm interviewers with questions like, "Do you think I'm an American project, or a Kremlin one?"

During the early-January 2012 holiday lull in Russia, Navalny engaged in a lengthy, oh-so-civilized dialogue in Live Journal with Boris Akunin (real name, Grigori Chkhartishvili), a famous detective-story author and liberal activist who was another leader of the December demonstrations, about whether Navalny's commitment to the slogan "Russia for the Russians" marks him as a bigot who is unfit to lead. Addressing crowds on the street, however, Navalny sounds like Mussolini. Prominent Russian columnist Maxim Sokolov, writing in Izvestia, found him reminiscent of either Hitler, or Catalina, who conspired against the Roman Republic.

Navalny may well end up being expendable in the view of his sponsors. In the meantime, it is clear that he is working from the playbook of Gene Sharp, whose neurolinguistic programming and advertising techniques were employed in Ukraine's Orange Revolution in 2004.[10] Sharp, a veteran of "advanced studies" at Oxford and 30 years at Harvard's Center for International Affairs, is the author of The Politics of Nonviolent Action: Power and Struggle, which advises the use of symbolic colors, short slogans, and so forth.

While at Yale, Navalny also served as an informant and advisor for a two-year study conducted at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society, one of the institutions participating in the OpenNet Initiative, launched out of Cambridge University in the U.K. The study produced a profile titled "Mapping the Russian Blogosphere," which detailed the different sections of the Runet: liberal, nationalist, cultural, foreign-based, etc., looking at their potential social impact.

Allen Douglas, Gabrielle Peut, David Christie, and Dorothea Bunnell did research for this article.


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