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War is Racket Bulletin, 2015

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[Dec 17, 2015] US militarism is Alice in Wonderland

economistsview.typepad.com
anne, December 17, 2015 at 11:50 AM
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/17/world/asia/navy-seal-team-2-afghanistan-beating-death.html

December 16, 2015

Navy SEALs, a Beating Death and Complaints of a Cover-Up
By NICHOLAS KULISH, CHRISTOPHER DREW and MATTHEW ROSENBERG

U.S. soldiers accused Afghan police and Navy SEALs of abusing detainees. But the SEAL command opted against a court-martial and cleared its men of wrongdoing.

ilsm said in reply to anne...

Too much training to send to jail.

While E-4 Bergdahl does in captivity what several hundred officers did in Hanoi and gets life!

US militarism is Alice's Wonderland!

[Dec 17, 2015] US militarism is Alice in Wonderland

economistsview.typepad.com
anne, December 17, 2015 at 11:50 AM
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/17/world/asia/navy-seal-team-2-afghanistan-beating-death.html

December 16, 2015

Navy SEALs, a Beating Death and Complaints of a Cover-Up
By NICHOLAS KULISH, CHRISTOPHER DREW and MATTHEW ROSENBERG

U.S. soldiers accused Afghan police and Navy SEALs of abusing detainees. But the SEAL command opted against a court-martial and cleared its men of wrongdoing.

ilsm said in reply to anne...

Too much training to send to jail.

While E-4 Bergdahl does in captivity what several hundred officers did in Hanoi and gets life!

US militarism is Alice's Wonderland!

[Dec 13, 2015] US military spending is currently $738.3 billion

Notable quotes:
"... military spending is currently $738.3 billion. ..."
"... Defense spending was 60.3% of federal government consumption and investment in July through September 2015. ..."
"... Defense spending was 23.1% of all government consumption and investment in July through September 2015. ..."
"... Defense spending was 4.1% of Gross Domestic Product in July through September 2015. ..."
economistsview.typepad.com

Economist's View

anne said...

http://cepr.net/blogs/beat-the-press/in-paris-talks-rich-countries-pledged-0-25-percent-of-gdp-to-help-poor-countries

December 13, 2015

In Paris Talks, Rich Countries Pledged 0.25 Percent of GDP to Help Poor Countries

In case you were wondering about the importance of a $100 billion a year, * non-binding commitment, it's roughly 0.25 percent of rich country's $40 trillion annual GDP (about 6 percent of what the U.S. spends on the military). This counts the U.S., European Union, Japan, Canada, and Australia as rich countries. If China is included in that list, the commitment would be less than 0.2 percent of GDP.

* http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/13/world/europe/climate-change-accord-paris.html

-- Dean Baker

anne said in reply to anne...
"...about 6 percent of what the U.S. spends on the military...."

I do not understand this figure since currently defense spending is running at $738.3 billion yearly or which 6% would be $44.3 billion:

http://www.bea.gov/iTable/iTableHtml.cfm?reqid=9&step=3&isuri=1&904=2014&903=5&906=q&905=2015&910=x&911=0

anne said in reply to anne...
Correcting Dean Baker:

http://cepr.net/blogs/beat-the-press/in-paris-talks-rich-countries-pledged-0-25-percent-of-gdp-to-help-poor-countries

December 13, 2015

In Paris Talks, Rich Countries Pledged 0.25 Percent of GDP to Help Poor Countries

In case you were wondering about the importance of a $100 billion a year, * non-binding commitment, it's roughly 0.25 percent of rich country's $40 trillion annual GDP (about 7.4 percent ** of what the U.S. spends on the military). This counts the U.S., European Union, Japan, Canada, and Australia as rich countries. If China is included in that list, the commitment would be less than 0.2 percent of GDP.

* http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/13/world/europe/climate-change-accord-paris.html

** http://www.bea.gov/iTable/iTableHtml.cfm?reqid=9&step=3&isuri=1&904=2014&903=5&906=q&905=2015&910=x&911=0

-- Dean Baker

anne said in reply to anne...
Dean Baker clarifies:

http://cepr.net/blogs/beat-the-press/in-paris-talks-rich-countries-pledged-0-25-percent-of-gdp-to-help-poor-countries

December 13, 2015

In Paris Talks, Rich Countries Pledged 0.25 Percent of GDP to Help Poor Countries

In case you were wondering about the importance of a $100 billion a year, * non-binding commitment, it's roughly 0.25 percent of rich country's $40 trillion annual GDP (about 6 percent of what the U.S. spends on the military). This counts the U.S., European Union, Japan, Canada, and Australia as rich countries. If China is included in that list, the commitment would be less than 0.2 percent of GDP.

(I see my comment on military spending here created a bit of confusion. I was looking at the U.S. share of the commitment, 0.25 percent of its GDP and comparing it to the roughly 4.0 percent of GDP it spends on the military. That comes to 6 percent. I was not referring to the whole $100 billion.)

* http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/13/world/europe/climate-change-accord-paris.html

-- Dean Baker

djb said in reply to anne...
100,000,000,000/0.06 = 1.67 trillion
anne said in reply to djb...
$100 billion a year, ........about 6 percent of what the U.S. spends on the military

100,000,000,000/0.06 = 1.67 trillion

[ This is incorrect, military spending is currently $738.3 billion. ]

anne said in reply to djb...
http://www.bea.gov/iTable/iTableHtml.cfm?reqid=9&step=3&isuri=1&904=2014&903=5&906=q&905=2015&910=x&911=0

January 15, 2015

Defense spending was 60.3% of federal government consumption and investment in July through September 2015.

(Billions of dollars)

$738.3 / $1,224.4 = 60.3%

Defense spending was 23.1% of all government consumption and investment in July through September 2015.

$738.3 / $3,200.4 = 23.1%

Defense spending was 4.1% of Gross Domestic Product in July through September 2015.

$738.3 / $18,064.7 = 4.1%

djb said in reply to djb...
oh never mind I get it

.25 % is 6 percent of the percent us spends on military

the 40 trillion is the gdp of all the countries

got it

anne said in reply to djb...
"I get it:

.25 % is 6 percent of the percent US spends on military."

So .25 percent of United States GDP for climate change assistance to poor countries is 6 percent of the amount the US spends on the military.

.0025 x $18,064.7 billion GDP = $45.16 billion on climate change

$45.16 billion on climate change / $738.3 billion on the military = 0.61 or 6.1 percent of military spending

anne said in reply to anne...
United States climate change assistance to poor countries will be .25 percent of GDP or 6% of US military spending.
anne said in reply to anne...
What the United States commitment to climate change assistance for poor countries means is spending about $45.2 billion yearly or .25 percent of GDP. Whether the President can convince Congress to spend the $45 billion yearly will now have to be answered.
anne said in reply to djb...
"I get it:

.25 % is 6 percent of the [amount] US spends on military."

[ This is correct. ]

anne said in reply to djb...
http://cepr.net/blogs/beat-the-press/in-paris-talks-rich-countries-pledged-0-25-percent-of-gdp-to-help-poor-countries

December 13, 2015

In Paris Talks, Rich Countries Pledged 0.25 Percent of GDP to Help Poor Countries

In case you were wondering about the importance of a $100 billion a year, * non-binding commitment, it's roughly 0.25 percent of rich country's $40 trillion annual GDP (about 6 percent of what the U.S. spends on the military). This counts the U.S., European Union, Japan, Canada, and Australia as rich countries. If China is included in that list, the commitment would be less than 0.2 percent of GDP.

(I see my comment on military spending here created a bit of confusion. I was looking at the U.S. share of the commitment, 0.25 percent of its GDP and comparing it to the roughly 4.0 percent of GDP it spends on the military. ** That comes to 6 percent. I was not referring to the whole $100 billion.)

* http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/13/world/europe/climate-change-accord-paris.html

** http://www.bea.gov/iTable/iTableHtml.cfm?reqid=9&step=3&isuri=1&904=2014&903=5&906=q&905=2015&910=x&911=0

-- Dean Baker

anne said in reply to djb...
http://www.bea.gov/iTable/iTableHtml.cfm?reqid=9&step=3&isuri=1&904=2007&903=5&906=q&905=2015&910=x&911=0

January 15, 2015

Defense spending was 4.1% of Gross Domestic Product in July through September 2015.

$738.3 / $18,064.7 = 4.1%

ilsm said in reply to anne...
UK is the only NATO nation beside the US that spend the suggested 2% of GDP. The rest run about 1.2%.

Small wonder they need US to run their wars of convenience.

More telling US pentagon spending is around 50% of world military spending and has not won anything in 60 years.

[Dec 06, 2015] The USA is number one small arms manufacturer in the world

peakoilbarrel.com
Glenn Stehle, 12/05/2015 at 2:54 pm
Ves,

There was an article in one of the Mexico City dailies today, written in response to the shootings in San Bernardino, that cited some numbers that were news to me:

1) The United States is the #1 small arms manufacturer in the world

2) 83% of small arms manufactured in the world are manufactured in the United States

3) The US's closest competitor is Russia, which manufactures 11% of the world's small arms

4) Small arms are the US's third largest export product, surpassed only by aircraft and agricultural products

5) The US market itself consumes 15 million small arms per year, and there are 300 million small arms currently in the posession of US private citizens

6) Saudi Arabia, however, is by far and away the largest small arms consumer in the world, and purchases 33.1% of all small arms produced in the world

7) Saudi Arabia then re-distributes these small arms to its allies in Syria, Lybia, etc.

8) So far in 2015, there have been 351 "mass shootings" in the United States in which 447 persons have been killed and another 290 wounded

9) The world's leading human rights organizations never speak of the bloodbath ocurring around the world due to the proliferation of small arms, much less the United Nations Security Council.

10) Both the United States and Russia seem quite content to keep any talk of small arms proliferation off the agenda.

http://www.jornada.unam.mx/2015/12/05/opinion/023a1pol

[Nov 28, 2015] The Perils of Endless War - Antiwar.com

Notable quotes:
"... John Quincy Adams, for his part, loved an America that "goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy." ..."
November 28, 2015 | Antiwar.com
War tends to perpetuate itself. As soon as one brute gets killed, another takes his place; when the new guy falls, another materializes.

Consider Richard Nixon's intensification of the American war on Cambodia. In hopes of maintaining an advantage over the Communists as he withdrew American troops from Southeast Asia, Nixon ravaged Vietnam's western neighbor with approximately 500,000 tons of bombs between 1969 and 1973. But instead of destroying the Communist menace, these attempts to buttress Nguyen Van Thieu's South Vietnamese government and then Lon Nol's Cambodian government only transformed it. The bombings led many of Nixon's early targets to desert the eastern region of the country in favor of Cambodia's interior where they organized with the Khmer Rouge.

As a CIA official noted in 1973, the Khmer Rouge started to "us[e] damage caused by B-52 strikes as the main theme of their propaganda." By appealing to Cambodians who were affected by the bombing raids, this brutal Communist organization, a peripheral batch of 10,000 fighters in 1969, had expanded by 1973 into a formidable army with 20 times as many members. Two years later, they seized control of Phnom Penh and murdered more than one million of their compatriots in a grisly genocide.

The following decade, when war erupted between the forces of Iran's Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and Iraq's Saddam Hussein, the United States hedged its bets by providing military assistance to both governments as they slaughtered hundreds of thousands of people. But when Saddam invaded Kuwait in 1990, ousted the emir, and ultimately assassinated about 1,000 Kuwaitis, the United States turned on its former ally with an incursion that directly killed 3,500 innocent Iraqis and suffocated 100,000 others through the destruction of Iraqi infrastructure. The US also maintained an embargo against Iraq throughout the 1990s, a program that contributed to the deaths of 500,000 Iraqis and that UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Iraq Dennis Halliday deemed "genocidal" when he explained his 1998 resignation.

The newly restored Kuwaiti government, for its part, retaliated against minority groups for their suspected "collaboration" with the Iraqi occupiers. The government threw Palestinians out of schools, fired its Palestinian employees, and threatened thousands with "arbitrary arrest, torture, rape, and murder." Beyond that, Kuwait interdicted the reentry of more than 150,000 Palestinians and tens of thousands of Bedoons who had evacuated Kuwait when the tyrant Saddam took over. Thus, years of American maneuvering to achieve peace and security – by playing Iran and Iraq off of each other, by privileging Kuwaiti authoritarians over Iraqi authoritarians, by killing tens of thousands of innocent people who got in the way – failed.

The chase continues today as the United States targets the savage "Islamic State," another monster that the West inadvertently helped create by assisting foreign militants. History suggests that this war against Islamism, if taken to its logical extreme, will prove to be an endless game of whack-a-mole. Yes, our government can assassinate some terrorists; what it cannot do is stop aggrieved civilian victims of Western bombings from replacing the dead by becoming terrorists themselves. Furthermore, even if ISIS disappeared tomorrow, there would still exist soldiers – in Al-Qaeda, for instance – prepared to fill the void. That will remain true no matter how many bombs the West drops, no matter how many weapons it tenders to foreign militias, no matter how many authoritarian governments it buttresses in pursuit of "national security."

So, what are we to do when foreign antagonists, whatever the source of their discontent, urge people to attack us? We should abandon the Sisyphean task of eradicating anti-American sentiments abroad and invest in security at home. Gathering foreign intelligence is important when it allows us to strengthen our defenses here, but bombing people in Iraq and Syria, enabling the Saudi murder of Yemenis, and deploying troops to Cameroon are futile steps when enemy organizations can constantly replenish their supply of fighters by propagandizing among natives who deplore Western intervention.

This understanding, though underappreciated in contemporary American government, reflects a noble American tradition. John Quincy Adams, for his part, loved an America that "goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy." Decades later, Jeannette Rankin doubted the benefits of American interventionism, contending that "you can no more win a war than you can win an earthquake." Martin Luther King Jr. warned that "violence never brings permanent peace. It solves no social problem: it merely creates new and more complicated ones." These leaders adamantly rejected an American politics of unending aggressive war. It is time for us to do the same.

Tommy Raskin is a contributor to the Good Men Project and Foreign Policy in Focus.

[Nov 25, 2015] Turkish military releases recording of warning to Russian jet

www.theguardian.com

Konstantin Murakhtin, a navigator who was rescued in a joint operation by Syrian and Russian commandos, told Russian media: "There were no warnings, either by radio or visually. There was no contact whatsoever."

He also denied entering Turkish airspace. "I could see perfectly on the map and on the ground where the border was and where we were. There was no danger of entering Turkey," he said.

The apparent hardening of both countries' versions of events came as Russian warplanes carried out heavy raids in Syria's northern Latakia province, where the plane came down. Tuesday's incident – the first time a Nato member state has shot down a Russian warplane since the Korean war – risks provoking a clash over the ongoing conflict in Syria, where Russia has intervened to prop up the regime of Bashar al-Assad.

... ... ...

Later, in a telephone call with John Kerry, the US secretary of state, Lavrov said Turkey's actions were a "gross violation" of an agreement between Moscow and Washington on air space safety over Syria. The state department said Kerry called for calm and more dialogue between Turkish and Russian officials.

... ... ...

Russian officials made it clear that despite the fury the reaction would be measured. There is no talk of a military response, and no suggestion that diplomatic relations could be cut or the Turkish ambassador expelled from Moscow. However, the tone of relations between the two countries is likely to change dramatically.

... ... ...

A Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova, hit out at the US state department official Mark Toner, who said the Turkmen fighters who shot the Russian airman as he parachuted to the ground could have been acting in self defence. "Remember these words, remember them forever. I will never forget them, I promise," Zakharova wrote on Facebook.

[Nov 25, 2015] The shooting down of a Russian jet tangles the diplomatic web still further

Notable quotes:
"... Recently, Moscow's rapprochement with the Syrian Kurds, the PYD, only added to the huge complexity of the situation. ..."
"... any solution of the Syrian conflict will be based on a precondition that the US and Russia put aside their differences, ..."
"... At least one good thing has come from all of this. At least it took Putin to be the first leader to openly say exactly what turkey actually is. A despicable, Islamist supporting vile wolf in Sheep's clothing. ..."
"... well , just think for a second .... all the image - they were shooting him while he was in the air , shouting "Allah Akbar " then they showed a photo with dead pilot , being proud of that ..... Those ppl are the "hope" for a Syria post-Assad....don't you feel that something is wrong here ? ..."
"... Also as soon as the noble Turkman started shooting at the pilot and navigator once they'd bailed out of the plane they showed themselves to be the terrorists they are. Playing "no prisoners" against Russia. ..."
"... At the G20 Antalya summit of Nov 15, Putin embarrassed Obama publicly showing satellite pictures of ridiculously long tanker lines waiting for weeks to load oil from ISIS, as the coalition spared them any trouble. "I've shown our colleagues photos taken from space and from aircraft which clearly demonstrate the scale of the illegal trade in oil," said Putin. ..."
"... So there you have it. For 15 months, the US didn't touch the oil trade that financed ISIS affairs, until Russia shamed them into it. Then, the mightiest army in the world bombs 400 trucks, while Russia destroys 1000. Then Russia provides videos of its airstrikes, while the US doesn't, and PBS is caught passing off Russian evidence as American. ..."
"... Of course Turkey did not need to down this jet: well planned and a clear provocation to start the propaganda war against Russia which actually wants to stop this war before a transition without a pre-planned (US) outcome. ..."
"... With Saudi and Turkish support for ISIS , just who have they bothered saving and sending out into Europe amongst their name taking and slaughters ? Wahabists? How many cells set up now globally? ..."
"... The turkmen are illegally staging war. Russia is the only country legally in Syria. That's why CIA, Saudi, Turk, Israel etc etc etc operate clandestine. But they all enjoy bombing hotheads. A pity so many of them think their brands of religion or old stories from centuries ago of enemies have any bearing today. Or perhaps they just believe rich mens newspapers and media too much. Maybe all their educations and futures were lost by gangsters that were funded and protected and given country ownership for oil and now forces clean up their centuries long mess for newer deals. ..."
"... I thought Russia was INVITED by the Syrian Gov. to assist them in eradicating ALL rebel factions including a bunch of Turkmen rebels funded by Erdogan. No others operating in Syria are legitimate. Any cowards shouting Allah uakbar and killing POWs should be eradicated ..."
"... According to the BBC the Turkmen fight with Al Nusra. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-34910389 UN Resolution 2249 calls not only for action against IS but also Al Nusra and other AQ associated groups. ..."
"... I also know Turkey has been "laundering" ISIS oil from Syria and Iraq to the tune of $2 million/day. ..."
"... Well, a US Air Force has now also suggested that the Turkish shooting down of the Russian had to have been a pre-planned provocation. Also US officials have said it cannot be confirmed that the Russian jet incurred into Turkish territory. And of course there is the testimony of the Russian pilot. ..."
"... What ethnic cleansing??? Assad has a multi sect and multi ethnic government. Meanwhile western and Turkish backed jihadist have openly said they will massacre every last Kurd,Christian,Alawi and Druze in the country. ..."
"... Shooting down the Russian plane was Turkey's way of flexing its muscles. The murder of the pilot in the parashoot was a cowardly act. These are the people the US are backing. They can be added to Obama's list of most favored and join the ranks of the Saudis who behead and crucify protesters ..."
"... Erdogan is playing both NATO and Russia for fools. Trying to create a wedge and sabotage the restoration of stability in Syria. ..."
"... It is all a giant make-believe. They are only using ISIS as a pretext to occupy and breakup Syria. And Western populations swallow all these lies without blinking and feel victimized by refugees. ..."
"... Now, I'd bet that Putin has no plans to exacerbate the current situation by shooting down any Turkish jets out of revenge for yesterday's incident. But it will be unsettling for Turkish flyboys and their bosses to know that a good chunk of their a airspace is totally vulnerable and they fly there only because Russia lets them. ..."
"... it's astonishing how many of the Putin hating NATObots from the Ukrainian-themed CIF threads turn out to be ISIS supporters. ..."
"... indeed, with the "stench" of US grand mufti all over them.. How far do you think Obama will bow on his next visit to Saudi. ..."
"... Yup the FT estimated before the Russians got involved that ISIS were producing between 30,000 and 40,000 barrels of oil a day. You would need over 2000 full size road tankers just to move one days output. Now its fair to assume after filling up it takes more than a day before it gets back to the pump. Surprisingly the US has neither noticed all these tankers and even more surprisingly the oil tanks and installations. ..."
"... The whole regime change plan is hanging in the balance and every day Russia solidifies Assad's position. If this continues for even another month it will be virtually impossible for the Western alliance to demand the departure of Assad. ..."
"... Their bargaining position is diminishing by the day and it is great to watch. Also good to read that the Russians have been pounding the shi*e out of those Turkmen areas. Expect those silly buggers to be slaughtered whilst Erdogan and the Turks watch on helplessly. If they even try anything inside the Syrian border now the Russians will annihilate them. ..."
"... Erdogan's reaction to Syria shooting down a Turkish jet in 2012. "Erdogan criticized Syria harshly on Tuesday for shooting down the Turkish fighter jet, saying: "Even if the plane was in their airspace for a few seconds, that is no excuse to attack." "It was clear that this plane was not an aggressive plane. Still it was shot down," the corrupt ISIS supporting scumbag said" ..."
www.theguardian.com

The nervousness displayed by the AKP administration, in Ankara, has a lot to do with Turkey's Syria policy being in ever-growing disarray, and its failure to set priorities to help resolve the conflict. As the Syrian quagmire deepened, old anti-Kurdish fixations in Ankara came to the surface, and clashed with the priorities of its allies, centred on Isis. Ankara's blocking moves against the only combat force on ground, the PKK-YPG axis, has impeded the fight against jihadists, and its constant redrawing of red-lines (Kurds, Turkmens, no-fly zone, Assad gone etc) may have been frustrating the White House, but does not seem to affect Moscow. Recently, Moscow's rapprochement with the Syrian Kurds, the PYD, only added to the huge complexity of the situation.

In the recent G20 summit, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was once more keen to underline that "terror has no religion and there should be no our terrorist and your terrorist"

... ... ...

So, the tension now rises between one determined and one undecided, conflicted player – one lucid on strategy, the other lacking it. If any, the lesson to be drawn from this showdown is this: any solution of the Syrian conflict will be based on a precondition that the US and Russia put aside their differences, agree in principle on the future of the region, build a joint intelligence gathering and coordinated battle scheme against jihadists, and demand utter clarity of the positions of their myopic, egocentric allies. Unless they do so, more complications, and risks beyond turf wars will be knocking at the door

Eugenios -> André De Koning 25 Nov 2015 23:24

Assad is targeted because it is a necessary prelude to an attack on Iran. Pepe Escobar called that long ago. What is sought is a Syria in the imperialist orbit or in chaos.

Attack on Iran by whom--you ask? Actually several in cahoots, including Israel and Saudi Arabia, et al.

Lyigushka -> trandq 25 Nov 2015 23:22

BBC maps show ISIS controlled territory only a few miles from the Turkmen area where the shooting down took place.
Your not very good at this are you
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-27838034

Lyigushka -> trandq 25 Nov 2015 23:11

A brief search on the internet shows many items referring to Turkish support for IS.

Now the SAA with Russian support is on the border dealing with the jihadist Turkmen, Turkey's duplicity is in danger of being revealed .

Hence the impotent rage and desperate pleas for support to its other US coalition partners and the strange reluctance of the complicit western MSM to fully reveal the lies and double standards of the western allies in this foul business.

Only the other day a US TV program was trying to con its viewers that the US was bombing ISIS oil trucks, with video from a Russian airstrike.

http://www.moonofalabama.org/2015/11/pbs-uses-russian-airstrike-videos-to-claim-us-airstrike-successes.html

James H McDougall 25 Nov 2015 23:09

At least one good thing has come from all of this. At least it took Putin to be the first leader to openly say exactly what turkey actually is. A despicable, Islamist supporting vile wolf in Sheep's clothing. Who else was buying ISIS oil....the tooth fairy ? Never in my life did I think I'd be defending the red team yet here I am.

AtelierEclatPekin -> murati 25 Nov 2015 23:06

well , just think for a second .... all the image - they were shooting him while he was in the air , shouting "Allah Akbar " then they showed a photo with dead pilot , being proud of that ..... Those ppl are the "hope" for a Syria post-Assad....don't you feel that something is wrong here ?

Shankman -> ianhassall 25 Nov 2015 23:02

He was awfully quick to accept Turkey's version of events.

As for his Nobel "Peace" Prize, Alfred Nobel is probably still turning in his grave.

Lyigushka -> trandq 25 Nov 2015 23:02

Of course Turkey supports ISIS and has done for all its existence as part of an opposition to its main enemies, Assad and the Kurds.

A brief search of the internet provides countless articles on this without even having to quote Russian sources. Examples
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-l-phillips/research-paper-isis-turke_b_6128950.html
http://www.infowars.com/former-nato-commander-turkey-is-supporting-isis/

iusedtopost 25 Nov 2015 23:01

.....and the censors are out again.....SHAME on you Guardian.

I say again.....MSM now referring to "Turkmen" like they are cuddly toys FFS

They are head chopping....moon howling....islamo-terrorists.

Russia has the right idea....kill the lot them

ianhassall -> ianhassall 25 Nov 2015 22:56

Also as soon as the noble Turkman started shooting at the pilot and navigator once they'd bailed out of the plane they showed themselves to be the terrorists they are. Playing "no prisoners" against Russia.

And as for the US - they can bomb a Medicin sans Frontiers field hospital in Afghanistan for 37 minutes and the best excuse they come out with is "the plane's email stopped working, it didn't know where the target was, they didn't know where they were, so they just attacked something that looked like". So much for US military's navigation abilities.

NikLot -> LordMurphy 25 Nov 2015 22:44

Dear Lord, where did I defend it?!! How do you read that?!!! Of course it is appalling!!!

I wanted to point out that the 'good terrorist' Turkmen militia or whoever else did it would have done the same to NATO pilots and that the story should be explored from that angle too. Statement by Turkey's PM today, if true, confirms my concern:

"Davutoglu told his party's lawmakers on Wednesday that Turkey didn't know the nationality of the plane that was brought down on Tuesday until Moscow announced it was Russian."

ianhassall 25 Nov 2015 22:38

Its amazing that NATO have been bombing ISIS for 2 years and did very little to halt its progress.

Russia's been doing it for a month and have bombed ISIS, the military supplies NATO have been giving ISIS, and the illegal oil racket that Turkey's been running with ISIS - all at a fraction of the cost that's going into supporting ISIS and other Syrian terrorist groups.

I can see why Turkey's upset. Also anyone who thinks Turkey shot down this plane without the approval of NATO and Obama is kidding themselves. Obama has blood up to his armpits with what's been going on in Syria, despite his Peace Prize credentials.


luella zarf -> ArundelXVI 25 Nov 2015 22:28

OK I did some research and I was somewhat wrong, Russia did initiate the bombing of the oil delivery system, but at the G20 summit. This is the actual chronology:

At the G20 Antalya summit of Nov 15, Putin embarrassed Obama publicly showing satellite pictures of ridiculously long tanker lines waiting for weeks to load oil from ISIS, as the coalition spared them any trouble. "I've shown our colleagues photos taken from space and from aircraft which clearly demonstrate the scale of the illegal trade in oil," said Putin.

The next day, on Nov 16, the US bombed a truck assembly for the first time in the history of the coalition and then claimed to have hit 116 oil tankers. In the meantime, Russia carried on its own airstrike campaign, destroying more than 1,000 tankers and a refinery in a period of just five days, and posting video footage of the airstrikes.

Because the US never made available any recordings, on Nov 19 PBS used footage of Russian fighter jets bombing an oil storage facility and passed it off as evidence of the US hits. The Moon of Alabama website was the first to notice. On Nov 23, a second American air raid claimed to have destroyed 283 oil tankers.

So there you have it. For 15 months, the US didn't touch the oil trade that financed ISIS affairs, until Russia shamed them into it. Then, the mightiest army in the world bombs 400 trucks, while Russia destroys 1000. Then Russia provides videos of its airstrikes, while the US doesn't, and PBS is caught passing off Russian evidence as American.

idkak -> John Smith 25 Nov 2015 22:17

Currently 18 aircraft are patrolling the area on a daily basis, they must have misread the memo.... Downing a Turkish plane over Turkish soil, or attacking a NATO aircraft on mission in Syria within the alliance that is currently bombing ISIS or other terrorist variants... won't be favorable for Russia or their forces in Syria. Even without NATO, Turkey has a very large military and the location we are talking about is about 2-5 minutes to bomb, and 1-2 minutes to intercept.. so the attack would be about the same level of strategic stupidity as attacking Russia from the Ukraine.

André De Koning -> trandq 25 Nov 2015 22:16

How naive: downing a jet who fights al-Nusra. Of course Turkey has supported terrorist there for a long time and left the border between Turkey and Syria porous, so the proxy war can be fought against Assad (just one man (?) always features in the multi-factorial warfare, which is easy on the ears of simpletons). There were already plans in 1957 and more modern ones in the US to ruin Syria and take the land and resources and use it for the oil pipelines from Saudi to Turkey (Assad did not sign off in 2009, so war was bound to happen).

André De Koning 25 Nov 2015 22:11

Imagine a US fighter being shot down? From the beginning of the war Russia and Syria said there were not just peaceful demonstrators, but people who were shooting and grew into ISIS and Al-Nusra and al-Qaeda. This did not fit the western propaganda and the Divide and Ruin policy (title of Dan Glazebrook's recent book of articles) which is that Syria was a on the Ruin-map for a long time. Turkey's Erdogan is intellectually an Islamist and together with Saudi they and the terrorists are fighting this proxy war the US can hardly afford.

In 7 weeks Russia destroyed more of ISIS infrastructure and oil tankers than the US did in a year (the superpower has managed to make ISIS increase seven-fold). The only objective is one man: Assad and the ruin of Syria to be 'rebuilt' (plundered) by western investments and domination of the entire region of the Middle East. The rest is lies to prop up propaganda and doing as if they bring democracy (like the West does in Saudi?! the biggest friend and weapons buyer. Just like Libya, Afghanistan and Iraq, which did not play ball, it will be destroyed by the West. It gets harder with Russia actually wishing to stop the proxy war: Syria itself deciding what their future will be? No way as far as US and UK are concerned (and the weak EU following with their businessmen contingent to reap the benefits). Absolutely disgusting that the people have to suffer it.

Of course Turkey did not need to down this jet: well planned and a clear provocation to start the propaganda war against Russia which actually wants to stop this war before a transition without a pre-planned (US) outcome.

EightEyedSpy -> Eugenios 25 Nov 2015 21:59

Meanwhile, Turkey just gave the Russians a no-fly zone--against Turks.

Not true - unless Russia intends to breach the resolution unanimously passed by the UN Security Council authorising all member nations to fight against ISIS on territory controlled by ISIS in Syria.

Pursuant to the Security Council resolution, which Russia voted for, all member nations have the legal right to use Syrian airspace and traverse Syrian territory for the purpose of fighting ISIS in Syria.

If Russia attempts to impose a no-fly zone against Turkey in Syria, Russia will violate the Security Council resolution ...

btt1943 25 Nov 2015 21:59

Forget about whether Russian jet has infiltrated Turkey's airspace or not as claimed by one and denied by other, the bottom line is Turkey has been wanting to play a big and decisive role in Syrian conflict and ISIS's rise. Ankara does not wish to see Russian's growing influence and intervention in the messy region.


Jimmi Cbreeze -> Normin 25 Nov 2015 21:49

With Saudi and Turkish support for ISIS , just who have they bothered saving and sending out into Europe amongst their name taking and slaughters ? Wahabists? How many cells set up now globally?


Jimmi Cbreeze EightEyedSpy 25 Nov 2015 21:17

The turkmen are illegally staging war. Russia is the only country legally in Syria. That's why CIA, Saudi, Turk, Israel etc etc etc operate clandestine. But they all enjoy bombing hotheads. A pity so many of them think their brands of religion or old stories from centuries ago of enemies have any bearing today. Or perhaps they just believe rich mens newspapers and media too much. Maybe all their educations and futures were lost by gangsters that were funded and protected and given country ownership for oil and now forces clean up their centuries long mess for newer deals.

And then you have the Murdochs and the Rothchilds and the arms industries.

Because where the people are'nt divided by cunning for profit, they are too lunatic and gangster minded to live in peace with each other anyway.
The whole matter is a multi joint taskforce of opportunism. And wealth is going for broke stamping and taking as much corporate ground as possible worldwide.

What chance is there of calling peace? Where and when are all these lunatics going to live in peace and constructively? How would they with half the the globe shitstirring and funding trouble amongst them for profit and gain?

Turkey has attacked Russia on Syrian soil and Russia is the only country legally at arms in Syria. Makes you wonder that Turkey does'nt like Turkmen or consider them a problem. That they provoke getting them wiped out of Syria. How could Assad or anyone govern getting undermined from a dozen directions.

Who knows, the place is a mess. It's no use preaching peace inside the turmoil. It has to come from outside and above. But it appears with this lot-what peace ever.

Bosula trandq 25 Nov 2015 21:07

Since you can't or don't bother to actually read the Guardian or other papers you probably missed that UN Resolution 2249 calls not only for action against IS but also Al Nusra and other AQ associated groups in Syria. The Syrian Free Army is linked with these groups, particularly Al Nusra.

Now you have learned something.


Eugenios 25 Nov 2015 21:04

It seems more likely than not that the Russians will make an effort to capture and try the moderate terrorists who shot the Russian pilot parachuting. It is a war crime after all. The old Soviets would have dispensed with such niceties as trials, but the RF is more legalistic. Nicely enough the moderate terrorists identified themselves on video, don't you know?

There may also be several legal cases brought against Erdogan and Turkey.

Meanwhile, Turkey just gave the Russians a no-fly zone--against Turks.


ozhellene -> trandq 25 Nov 2015 20:57

I thought Russia was INVITED by the Syrian Gov. to assist them in eradicating ALL rebel factions including a bunch of Turkmen rebels funded by Erdogan. No others operating in Syria are legitimate. Any cowards shouting Allah uakbar and killing POWs should be eradicated


luella zarf -> ArundelXVI 25 Nov 2015 20:54

US air strikes destroys 283 oil tankers used for smuggling to fund terror group. You were saying? I don't know why some people around here just feel free to make things up.

Give us a break. The US hit ISIS oil tanks 6 full days after Russia released footage which showed its fighter jets targeting 200 oil trucks and a refinery. In 15 months of bombing ISIS, there were no American airstrikes on oil tanks until Russia came along and showed them how it's done. Even PBS pointed out when reporting the attack "For the first time, the US is attacking oil delivery trucks."

ozhellene 25 Nov 2015 20:35

will this be a "turkey shoot"? Big mistake Mr Erdogan! You just condemned you Turkmen buddies to be bombed by the Russian bears.
Turkey will never avoid the Kurdish finally taking back their rightful lands, stolen during the Ottoman rule.
Never forget that Kurds make up a lot of your population.....waiting for the right moment...

WalterCronkiteBot 25 Nov 2015 20:32

According to the BBC the Turkmen fight with Al Nusra. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-34910389 UN Resolution 2249 calls not only for action against IS but also Al Nusra and other AQ associated groups.

These guys advertise and run jihadist training camps for children. http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2015/09/uighur-jihadist-group-in-syria-advertises-little-jihadists.php

They might not be explicitly AQ affiliated or Al Nusra itself but they share similar doctrines and fight together. Attacking them may not be by the word of the resolution but its certainly in the spirit of it.


ianhassall -> ianhassall 25 Nov 2015 20:13

Whether I think the Turkman should be wiped out is generally irrelevent.

I just know in the past 24 hours I've seen Turkey shoot down a Russian plane over Syria to defend the Turkmen. I also saw the Turkmen shooting at 2 Russian pilots why they attempted to parachute to safety, and one was killed. And I've seen the Turkmen fire a Saudi Arabia-supplied TOW missile at a Russian rescue helicopter, destroying it and killing two pilots.

I also know Turkey has been "laundering" ISIS oil from Syria and Iraq to the tune of $2 million/day.

You reap what you sow.

nnedjo 25 Nov 2015 19:49

In the recent G20 summit, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was once more keen to underline that "terror has no religion and there should be no our terrorist and your terrorist".

Yes, just when Erdogan says this, he thinks only on the Kurds, and wonder why the rest of the world considers the Kurds as freedom fighters, and only Turkey considers them as [its] terrorists.

However, the main message of this article is correct. In order to achieve peace in the Middle East, first the rest of the world must come to terms. The divisions in the world, inherited from the times of the Cold War were reflected also on the Islamic world, and so deepened or even provoked a new sectarian Sunni-Shia divisions and conflicts. So although it's "a chronic disease", it is fallen now into an acute phase in Syria and Iraq. And the urgency of the case requires that really has to come to some deal, primarily between the US and Russia, that it could reach the end of the civil war in Syria, but also in Iraq, because it's all inter-connected. Otherwise, this problem will become even more complicated and prolonged, with unforeseeable consequences.

Eugenios 25 Nov 2015 19:58

Well, a US Air Force has now also suggested that the Turkish shooting down of the Russian had to have been a pre-planned provocation. Also US officials have said it cannot be confirmed that the Russian jet incurred into Turkish territory. And of course there is the testimony of the Russian pilot. No doubt the Guardian will be covering these points, yes?

ianhassall -> EightEyedSpy 25 Nov 2015 19:47

Yes, I know. Why shouldn't Turkey defend terrorits and shoot down a Russian jet while its flying missions in Syria and not incur any wrath.

Russians have been fighting Islamic extremists for a bit longer than the West, who have generally only ever funded or armed them. I'd believe Putin 99 times out of a 100 before I'd believe Obama once.

illbthr22 -> EightEyedSpy 25 Nov 2015 19:21

What ethnic cleansing??? Assad has a multi sect and multi ethnic government. Meanwhile western and Turkish backed jihadist have openly said they will massacre every last Kurd,Christian,Alawi and Druze in the country.

Andrew Nichols -> Jeremn 25 Nov 2015 19:14

We don't have a clear, clear understanding of everything that happened today, okay? I've said that and I can keep saying it all day. We're still trying to determine what happened. It's easy to rush to judgments and to make proclamations and declarations after an incident like this.

Which is exactly what the US did - by supporting Turkeys side of the story. Dont you wish the journalist would point this out?

Cecile_Trib -> Spiffey 25 Nov 2015 19:12

Turkmen terrorists backed by Turkey (now from the air) are there not to fight with Assad but to wipe out Kurds in this region - Edorgan's sweet dream to get the political weight back.

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2015/08/12/world/middleeast/turkey-kurds-isis.html?_r=0

spitthedog -> centerline 25 Nov 2015 18:43

Amazing how Russia attacking the ISIS oil operation can suddenly embarrass the Yanks into doing the obvious. Why didn't they do it before? If ISIS and their FSA buddies loses they can't get rid of Assad for Bibi, simples. The good old FSA, chanting Jihad and carrying white on black Al Qaeda flags. We have an interesting idea of what "moderate" is. Then again Blair was a moderate and he.... ummm....errrr....oops!

luella zarf -> TheOutsider79 25 Nov 2015 18:38

are France the only honest brokers in all of this, the only ones actually doing what they say they are doing - targeting ISIS

No, of course not. It's all spin. France, which was Syria's colonial master, is hoping to regain some of its former influence. ISIS is just a pretext, and they really have no incentive of destroying their only justification for being there in the first place.

When France launched its first airstrikes in Sep, Reuters wrote: "Paris has become alarmed by the possibility of France being sidelined in negotiations to reach a political solution in Syria. A French diplomatic source said Paris needed to be one of the "hitters" in Syria - those taking direct military action - to legitimately take part in any negotiations for a political solution to the conflict."

http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/09/27/us-mideast-crisis-france-syria-idUSKCN0RR07Y20150927

This is why they are participating - to get a seat at the table when the great powers break up Syria and hand out land rights for pipelines to big oil.

SallyWa -> HHeLiBe 25 Nov 2015 18:46

Turkey has no interest in the peaceful settlement to the conflict in Syria that world powers are negotiating. As it gets desperate, Turkey will attempt to bring focus back on the Assad regime and reverse the losses it has made both in Syria and geopolitically.


SallyWa -> FelixFeline 25 Nov 2015 18:45

Really? I guess I'll have to take your word for that.

Really. That's sort of your issue, not mine.

Do you have any links to support your claims about these lost ISIS territories?

For example http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/oct/12/russian-airstrikes-support-syrian-troops-to-push-back-rebels-in-strategic-town
Article tried to call ISIS as rebels, though, it happens sometimes as those are always "good terrorists" or just "rebels" if they do what we need, like in this case if they are anti-Assad .


midnightschild10 25 Nov 2015 18:33

Although there has been a war of words between Greece and Turkey, with Turkey charging the Greeks with invading its air space, Turkey has yet to fire on a Greek plane. The turkmen are considered "moderates, and the US arm them to fight the Assad government. Shooting down the Russian plane was Turkey's way of flexing its muscles. The murder of the pilot in the parashoot was a cowardly act. These are the people the US are backing. They can be added to Obama's list of most favored and join the ranks of the Saudis who behead and crucify protesters, one upmanship over ISIS gruesome beheadings, and of course there is alSiSi, who executes all opposition. Petroshenko, wants to freeze the people of Crimea, and has over 6500 Ukrainian deaths notched on his belt since Nuland and Obama gave him the keys to Kiev.

Turkey feels feisty right now, but he obviously isn't aware of the talk coming from Washington about dividing up Syria among four leaders like they did to Berlin.

Turkey will have no part to play, and the US really wants to keep Russia out of the picture. They blame Assad for ISIS but the vacuum left by the US and the coalition left in Iraq is what gave birth to ISIS. Easy to depose governments, and then let chaos reign. Since Obama keeps bringing up the right of a sovereign nation to protect its borders, he should realize that the Syrian government never invited the US onto its soil. The Turkmen through their actions have shown they are terrorists, and Russia will treat them accordingly.

HHeLiBe 25 Nov 2015 18:32

Erdogan is playing both NATO and Russia for fools. Trying to create a wedge and sabotage the restoration of stability in Syria.

Branko Dodig 25 Nov 2015 18:26

The Russian plane was shot over Syrian airspace. Even if it had strayed over Turkish airspace, it was not shot down there. Basically, an act of revenge for bombing their "rebel" buddies.

SallyWa -> FelixFeline 25 Nov 2015 18:24

It is "Turkey screwed up and overreacted". Not confusing at all.

SallyWa -> FelixFeline 25 Nov 2015 18:23

Sorry, but I'm not Russian and also where have you been - Russia has been fighting ISIS in Syria better than US/coalition, though US/coalition did it like for a whole year.The result is that ISIS lost territories which it gained under US's "watch".

centerline 25 Nov 2015 18:12

Since the G20 meeting, Russia has photographed and destroyed the Turkish/ISIS oil convoys.

In the day or so since Turkey shot down the Russian plane in defence of al Qaeda, Russia has for the first time attacked a Turkish logistics convoy to ISIS and al Qaeda right at the main border crossing to Allepo. A number of trucks destroyed and 7 killed in that operation. turkey will pay dearly in the days to come, without Russia ever having to move into Turkish territory.

Any Turks running errands for AQ and ISIS within Syria will now be an endangered species. Or more to the point they will simply be eradicated like the vermin they are.

luella zarf -> TonyBlunt 25 Nov 2015 18:10

What a joke.

In one year of bombing, August 2014-July 2015, the coalition conducted 44,000 airstrikes in Syria-Iraq and killed 15,000 ISIS fighters, which comes at 3 sorties per terrorist!

It is all a giant make-believe. They are only using ISIS as a pretext to occupy and breakup Syria. And Western populations swallow all these lies without blinking and feel victimized by refugees.


pfox33 25 Nov 2015 17:49

The US and Israel were totally freaking when Russia first considered selling Iran S-300 systems, even though they're defensive. It would have taken the feasibility of bombing Iran's nuclear infrastructure to an unknown place. Russia sold these systems to select customers, like China. The S-400 is not for sale. Any search of Youtube will explain why.

When the S-400 is set up around Latakia they will effectively own the surrounding skies for 400 miles in every direction. That extends well into Turkey.

Now, I'd bet that Putin has no plans to exacerbate the current situation by shooting down any Turkish jets out of revenge for yesterday's incident. But it will be unsettling for Turkish flyboys and their bosses to know that a good chunk of their a airspace is totally vulnerable and they fly there only because Russia lets them.

So maybe the Turks pissed in the pickles. This little problem is keeping the Nato nabobs up at night. They haven't said a fucking word.


Geraldine Baxter -> SallyWa 25 Nov 2015 17:47

it's astonishing how many of the Putin hating NATObots from the Ukrainian-themed CIF threads turn out to be ISIS supporters.

indeed, with the "stench" of US grand mufti all over them.. How far do you think Obama will bow on his next visit to Saudi.


Liesandstats -> luella zarf 25 Nov 2015 17:47

Yup the FT estimated before the Russians got involved that ISIS were producing between 30,000 and 40,000 barrels of oil a day. You would need over 2000 full size road tankers just to move one days output. Now its fair to assume after filling up it takes more than a day before it gets back to the pump. Surprisingly the US has neither noticed all these tankers and even more surprisingly the oil tanks and installations.

jonsid 25 Nov 2015 17:33

An article about Syria is now infested with Banderites. They need to worry more about their own long-time disaster of a country instead of stalking every article mentioning Russia.

Anette Mor 25 Nov 2015 17:29

Russians spent all this time signing the rules of engagement and recognition of each other air crafts over Syria with the US, only to be shot by Turkey. Does NATO even exist as a unit other than in the headquarter offices? They constantly refer to the terms which could allegedly force then to support each other in case of external threat, while clearly they will fuck each other on technicalities for years before doing anything practically viable. Russia waste their time talking to NATO, instead had to bribe Turkey separately into a workable local deal. I am sure Turkey got just the same conclusion after wasting time in NATO talks. Corruption and complicity eaten away common sense in western politician and military heads. They only think how weak or strong they would look imitating one or another decision.

aretheymyfeet -> psygone 25 Nov 2015 17:22

Hilarious, checkmate Putin? The only reason the Turks took this drastic action is because the Western alliance has lost the initiative in Syria and they are desperately trying to goad Russia into overreacting. But, as we have seen time and again from the Russians (Lavrov is an incredibly impressive Statesman) that they are cool headed, and restrained.

The whole regime change plan is hanging in the balance and every day Russia solidifies Assad's position. If this continues for even another month it will be virtually impossible for the Western alliance to demand the departure of Assad.

Their bargaining position is diminishing by the day and it is great to watch. Also good to read that the Russians have been pounding the shi*e out of those Turkmen areas. Expect those silly buggers to be slaughtered whilst Erdogan and the Turks watch on helplessly. If they even try anything inside the Syrian border now the Russians will annihilate them. I'd say if anything, the Turks have strengthened the Russians providing them with the perfect excuse to close the Syrian air space to "unfriendly" forces. Check.


thatshowitgoes 25 Nov 2015 16:56

Erdogan's reaction to Syria shooting down a Turkish jet in 2012. "Erdogan criticized Syria harshly on Tuesday for shooting down the Turkish fighter jet, saying: "Even if the plane was in their airspace for a few seconds, that is no excuse to attack." "It was clear that this plane was not an aggressive plane. Still it was shot down," the corrupt ISIS supporting scumbag said"

SallyWa -> psygone 25 Nov 2015 16:56

means he's politically impotent, militarily boxed in a corner and incompetent for self-inflicting

You know you just described Obama and all his policies in a nutshell.

Bob Nassh -> keepithuman 25 Nov 2015 16:54

I believe there's conditions within the NATO treaty that prevent them from defending another member nation providing the conflict was instigated by war crimes committed by the member nation.


MRModeratedModerate 25 Nov 2015 16:50

But of course Turkey was exposed last year...Yet our governments continue to ignore and cover.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-l-phillips/research-paper-isis-turke_b_6128950.html?ir=Australia

luella zarf Jeremn 25 Nov 2015 16:45

The US doesn't bomb ISIS, only pretends it does. Actually nobody bombs ISIS there except Russia.

Only between August 2014 and July 2015 the coalition aircraft have flown nearly 44,000 sorties, according to USNews, and Airwars said the strikes have killed more than 15,000 Islamic State militants during this period.

http://www.usnews.com/news/politics/articles/2015/07/21/stealthy-jet-ensures-other-war-fighting-aircraft-survive

So they needed 3 sorties per terrorist! I have no idea how they manage to be this ineffective unless a) they are world's worst airforce b) it's all make-believe. My money is on option b).

Yury Kobyzev -> Valois1588 25 Nov 2015 16:41

Now fact - turkey government is on ISIS side. Its simplifies situation. Russia now quite free to clean the Turkey border from interface with ISIS. It's half a job in fight.

I don't see why Russia can be damaged by so stupid current west policy. I think that clever part of west will change policy towards Russia in near future and will find there friends as it was during ww2. You can repeat mantra Pu... tin as I use Ooom ... but is he of your level?

Chummy15 25 Nov 2015 16:30

Turkey has made it pretty clear where its primary loyalties lie, with ISIS and the other anti-Assad elements. It was a foolish move shooting down the Russian plane which clearly was no threat to the security of Turkey whether or not it had violated Turkish airspace, something that happen around the world regularly. It adds a further dimension to an already complicated war

[Nov 23, 2015] Christmas festivities a charade with world at war

news.yahoo.com

http://news.yahoo.com/christmas-festivities-charade-world-war-pope-183159295.html

Vatican City (AFP) - Christmas festivities will seem empty in a world which has chosen "war and hate", Pope Francis said Thursday.

"Christmas is approaching: there will be lights, parties, Christmas trees and nativity scenes ... it's all a charade. The world continues to go to war. The world has not chosen a peaceful path," he said in a sermon.

"There are wars today everywhere, and hate," he said after the worst terror attack in French history, the bombing of a Russian airliner, a double suicide bombing in Lebanon, and a series of other deadly strikes.

"We should ask for the grace to weep for this world, which does not recognise the path to peace. To weep for those who live for war and have the cynicism to deny it," the Argentine pontiff said, adding: "God weeps, Jesus weeps". ...

[Nov 23, 2015] For Bernie Sanders, it's New Hampshire or bust

Notable quotes:
"... With less than 12 weeks to go before the New Hampshire primary, all Bernie Sanders has is New Hampshire. ..."
"... In Iowa, Hillary Clinton leads him by 18 points. In South Carolina, Clinton is ahead of Sanders by 54 points. Nationally, the latest poll had Clinton's lead at 33 percentage points. ..."
"... Over the past month it has become clear that New Hampshire is no longer Bernie Sanders's firewall, but it remains the only reason he has an argument that there is a contest at all. Should Clinton ever take a double-digit lead in the Granite State, there will be nothing for anyone to talk about in terms of the Democratic contest. ..."
"... A substantial lead in the polls could prompt any candidate to look beyond the primary to try to get a head start on the general election, but in Mrs. Clinton's case, gazing past Mr. Sanders to next November is part of the intensified strategy to defeat him. ..."
"... "They are running on the same economic policies that have failed us before," Mrs. Clinton said at a rally in Memphis on Friday. She did not mention Mr. Sanders, but his stances on wealth and income have seemed to influence his rival's populist tone. "Trickledown economics, cut taxes on the wealthy, get out of the way of big corporations," she said. "Well, we know how that story ends, don't we?" ..."
"... Mr. Sanders's campaign manager, Jeff Weaver, said Mrs. Clinton's obsession with the Republican Party is a tactic to diminish her main Democratic primary opponent, whose economic message has attracted enormous crowds and enthusiasm. ..."
"... "We are much closer to Secretary Clinton today than Senator Obama was in 2008," Mr. Weaver said. "I don't think they think this is locked up." ..."
"... Among Democrats, Mrs. Clinton holds a 25 percentage point lead against Mr. Sanders nationally, according to a Bloomberg Politics poll released on Friday, compared with a nine percentage point advantage in the same poll conducted in September that also included Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., who later said he would not seek the nomination. ..."
"... The primary is by no means determined. Polls in Iowa, in particular, tend to undercount Mr. Sanders's young supporters who do not have landline phones, his aides say. And he continues to lead in some polls in New Hampshire, a state that was supposed to be a stronghold for Mrs. Clinton. ..."
"... Even as Mrs. Clinton focuses firmly on the Republicans, her campaign is increasing its indirect, if aggressive, moves to squeeze Mr. Sanders. She has secured the backing of major labor unions, including most recently the Service Employees International Union, which has two million members. Her campaign has emphasized Mrs. Clinton's commitment to gun control, an issue that Mr. Sanders, as a senator from a hunting state, has been less vehement about, and she delivered a major foreign policy speech on Thursday in New York, the same day Mr. Sanders delivered a speech about Democratic socialism in Washington. ("Ah, the attempted bigfoot," Mr. Weaver said of the timing of the two speeches. The Clinton campaign announced its speech a day earlier than the Sanders team.) ..."
"... Hillary Clintons speech on ISIS to the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) showed clearly what to expect in a Clinton presidency: more of the same. In her speech, Clinton doubled down on the existing, failed U.S. approach in the Middle East, the one she pursued as Secretary of State. ..."
"... The CIA-led policy in the Middle East works like this. If a regime is deemed to be unfriendly to the U.S., topple it. If a competitor like the Soviet Union or Russia has a foothold in the region, try to push it out. If this means arming violent insurgencies, including Sunni jihadists, and thereby creating mayhem: so be it. And if the result is terrorist blowback around the world by the forces created by the US, then double down on bombing and regime change. ..."
economistsview.typepad.com

Fred C. Dobbs said... Monday, November 23, 2015 at 08:21 AM

(Feel the Bern!)

For Bernie Sanders, it's New Hampshire or bust
http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/politics/2015/11/20/for-bernie-sanders-new-hampshire-bust/U3TtOEsDMlJiDkthJ1CzOM/story.html?event=event25
via @BostonGlobe - James Pindell - November 20, 2015

With less than 12 weeks to go before the New Hampshire primary, all Bernie Sanders has is New Hampshire.

In Iowa, Hillary Clinton leads him by 18 points. In South Carolina, Clinton is ahead of Sanders by 54 points. Nationally, the latest poll had Clinton's lead at 33 percentage points.

But in New Hampshire a poll this week showed the race tied. And last night, the state's largest union decided to endorse him, bucking the national union which announced it was with Clinton.

Over the past month it has become clear that New Hampshire is no longer Bernie Sanders's firewall, but it remains the only reason he has an argument that there is a contest at all. Should Clinton ever take a double-digit lead in the Granite State, there will be nothing for anyone to talk about in terms of the Democratic contest.

But so far Sanders is hanging on, even if there are some growing pains amid his campaign's quick attempt to scale up with new campaign cash. Sanders now has more than 60 staffers, and he opened his 14th campaign office, this one in Laconia, this week. ...

Fred C. Dobbs said in reply to Fred C. Dobbs...
There is also a chance that Dems will go with the First Secular Jewish Major Party Candidate, if The Donald has his say.

http://feelthebern.org/bernie-sanders-on-religion-and-beliefs/

Peter K. said in reply to Fred C. Dobbs...
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/24/us/politics/hillary-clinton-looks-past-primaries-in-strategy-to-defeat-bernie-sanders.html

Hillary Clinton Looks Past Primaries in Strategy to Defeat Bernie Sanders

By AMY CHOZICK
NOV. 23, 2015

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. - "Whenever Republicans get into the White House, they mess it up. They mess it up, folks," Hillary Rodham Clinton told a crowd gathered in a field lined with trees covered in Spanish moss here on Saturday.

At rallies these days, Mrs. Clinton criticizes the Republican presidential candidates for their economic policies ("Our economy does better with a Democrat in the White House"); she knocks their foreign policy approaches and says their positions on immigration and women's issues would set the country "backwards instead of forwards."

What she does not do is mention her main Democratic primary opponent, Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

Mrs. Clinton has regained her footing in the polls in Iowa and New Hampshire, and she has locked in the support of major labor unions and over half the Democratic Party's superdelegates, party leaders and elected officials, needed to secure the nomination. She is now acting as if she were no longer running against one rival, Mr. Sanders, but 14: the Republicans who are still preoccupied with cutting down one another.

A substantial lead in the polls could prompt any candidate to look beyond the primary to try to get a head start on the general election, but in Mrs. Clinton's case, gazing past Mr. Sanders to next November is part of the intensified strategy to defeat him.

Even voters who support Mr. Sanders often say that Mrs. Clinton appears more electable when compared with a Republican nominee. And while her economic message, considering her ties to Wall Street and the "super PAC" supporting her, can seem muddled when contrasted with Mr. Sanders's, it sounds more forceful to Democratic voters compared with Republican proposals. And, as a campaign aide points out, the Republican candidates consistently criticize Mrs. Clinton, so it makes sense for her to punch back.

"I love Bernie, and I feel he'd get something done about the lopsided distribution of wealth in this country," said Siobhan Hansen, 58, an undecided voter in Charleston. "But," she added, "I hate to admit it but I just think Hillary has a better chance in the general election."

Even as Mrs. Clinton's campaign has invested heavily in Iowa and New Hampshire and her schedule revolves around visiting states with early primaries, her message has become a broader rejoinder reminding voters of the 2008 financial crisis and linking the Republican candidates to the foreclosures and joblessness that President Obama inherited. It is a strategy her campaign believes will be effective in a general election contest after having a dry run before the primaries.

"They are running on the same economic policies that have failed us before," Mrs. Clinton said at a rally in Memphis on Friday. She did not mention Mr. Sanders, but his stances on wealth and income have seemed to influence his rival's populist tone. "Trickledown economics, cut taxes on the wealthy, get out of the way of big corporations," she said. "Well, we know how that story ends, don't we?"

At a town-hall-style event in Grinnell, Iowa, this month, Mrs. Clinton, talking about the importance of voter participation, even seemed to forget, albeit briefly, that the short-term goal was to win the Iowa caucuses. "If not me, I hope you caucus for somebody," she said. She paused. "I hope more of you caucus for me."

Mrs. Clinton is focused on capturing the nomination and has been contrasting herself with the Republicans since she announced her candidacy in April, the campaign aide said.

Mr. Sanders's campaign manager, Jeff Weaver, said Mrs. Clinton's obsession with the Republican Party is a tactic to diminish her main Democratic primary opponent, whose economic message has attracted enormous crowds and enthusiasm.

As Mr. Sanders delivered his standard speech about inequality here on Saturday, Mr. Weaver closely watched the voters in the front row who wore blue "H" T-shirts, indicating their support for Mrs. Clinton, as they cheered for Mr. Sanders several times.

"We are much closer to Secretary Clinton today than Senator Obama was in 2008," Mr. Weaver said. "I don't think they think this is locked up."

Mrs. Clinton may have been helped by the campaign's shift to foreign policy, where Mr. Sanders is seen as weaker, in the aftermath of the Nov. 13 terrorist attack in Paris. Mrs. Clinton said in a speech in New York on Thursday that the Republicans' approach to fighting the Islamic State, compared with her own, amounted to "a choice between fear and resolve." She derided as un-American the Republicans who said they would either bar Syrian refugees from resettling in the United States or allow only Christian refugees.

"There are forces no candidate can control, and they can be detrimental," Representative James E. Clyburn, Democrat of South Carolina, said when asked about the newfound focus on defeating the Islamic State. "I believe in this case third-party forces are working in her favor."

Among Democrats, Mrs. Clinton holds a 25 percentage point lead against Mr. Sanders nationally, according to a Bloomberg Politics poll released on Friday, compared with a nine percentage point advantage in the same poll conducted in September that also included Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., who later said he would not seek the nomination.

"By turning up the heat on Republicans, going after Trump, that's all part of the essence of saying, 'I am the leader of the Democratic Party,' " said Robert Shrum, a strategist for Democratic presidential candidates including John Kerry and Al Gore.

The primary is by no means determined. Polls in Iowa, in particular, tend to undercount Mr. Sanders's young supporters who do not have landline phones, his aides say. And he continues to lead in some polls in New Hampshire, a state that was supposed to be a stronghold for Mrs. Clinton.

Even as Mrs. Clinton focuses firmly on the Republicans, her campaign is increasing its indirect, if aggressive, moves to squeeze Mr. Sanders.

She has secured the backing of major labor unions, including most recently the Service Employees International Union, which has two million members. Her campaign has emphasized Mrs. Clinton's commitment to gun control, an issue that Mr. Sanders, as a senator from a hunting state, has been less vehement about, and she delivered a major foreign policy speech on Thursday in New York, the same day Mr. Sanders delivered a speech about Democratic socialism in Washington. ("Ah, the attempted bigfoot," Mr. Weaver said of the timing of the two speeches. The Clinton campaign announced its speech a day earlier than the Sanders team.)

Mrs. Clinton has also started to imply that Mr. Sanders's single-payer "Medicare for All" health care plan would amount to a middle-class tax increase.

In recent days, she has unveiled a plan to give Americans with unexpected medical costs a tax credit of $2,500 for an individual or $5,000 for a family. On Sunday in Iowa, she introduced another tax credit to cover up to $6,000 of medical expenses for middle-class families caring for ailing parents or grandparents. "I believe you deserve a raise, not a tax increase," she said in Memphis.

The Sanders campaign said that his plan would save the average family $5,000 a year through the elimination of premiums, deductibles and co-payments, and it called Mrs. Clinton's plan "Republican-lite" because it proposed short-term tax cuts over long-term benefits.

Mrs. Clinton's opponents point out that there is no more precarious place for her to be than when she seems inevitable, as she did in the early months of the 2008 Democratic primary before she finished third in the Iowa caucuses behind Senators Barack Obama and John Edwards.

This month, just after Mrs. Clinton had officially put her name on the ballot in New Hampshire, she sat down to take some questions from the local reporters who gathered around her in a cramped room at the State House in Concord. The first question: "How does it feel to once again be inevitable?"

Mrs. Clinton said she had put her name on the ballot in that very room in 2007. "I'm back again," she said. "I intend to do everything I can to work as hard as possible to be successful this time."

anne said...
http://www.commondreams.org/views/2015/11/23/hillary-clinton-and-isis-mess

November 23, 2015

Hillary Clinton and the ISIS Mess
By Jeffrey D. Sachs

Hillary Clinton's speech on ISIS to the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) showed clearly what to expect in a Clinton presidency: more of the same. In her speech, Clinton doubled down on the existing, failed U.S. approach in the Middle East, the one she pursued as Secretary of State.

The CIA-led policy in the Middle East works like this. If a regime is deemed to be unfriendly to the U.S., topple it. If a competitor like the Soviet Union or Russia has a foothold in the region, try to push it out. If this means arming violent insurgencies, including Sunni jihadists, and thereby creating mayhem: so be it. And if the result is terrorist blowback around the world by the forces created by the US, then double down on bombing and regime change.

In rare cases, great presidents learn to stand up to the CIA and the rest of the military-industrial-intelligence complex. JFK became one of the greatest presidents in American history when he came to realize the awful truth that his own military and CIA advisors had contributed to the onset of the Cuban Missile Crisis. The CIA-led Bay of Pigs fiasco and other CIA blunders had provoked a terrifying response from the Soviet Union. Recognizing that the U.S. approach had contributed to bringing the world to the brink, Kennedy bravely and successfully stood up to the warmongering pushed by so many of his advisors and pursued peace, both during and after the Cuban Missile Crisis. He thereby saved the world from nuclear annihilation and halted the unchecked proliferation of nuclear arms.

Clinton's speech shows that she and her advisors are good loyalists of the military-industrial-intelligence complex. Her speech included an impressive number of tactical elements: who should do the bombing and who should be the foot soldiers. Yet all of this tactical precision is nothing more than business as usual. Would Clinton ever have the courage and vision to push back against the U.S. security establishment, as did JFK, and thereby restore global diplomacy and reverse the upward spiral of war and terror?

Just as the CIA contributed to the downward slide to the Cuban Missile Crisis, and just as many of JFK's security chiefs urged war rather than negotiation during that crisis, so too today's Middle East terrorism, wars, and refugee crises have been stoked by misguided CIA-led interventions. Starting in 1979, the CIA began to build the modern Sunni jihadist movement, then known as the Mujahedeen, to fight the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. The CIA recruited young Sunni Muslim men to fight the Soviet infidel, and the CIA provided training, arms, and financing. Yet soon enough, this US-created jihadist army turned on the US, a classic and typical case of blowback.

The anti-U.S. and anti-Western blowback started with the first Gulf War in 1990, when the U.S. stationed troops throughout the region. It continued with the Second Gulf War, when the U.S. toppled a Sunni regime in Iraq and replaced it with a puppet Shia regime. In the process, it dismantled Saddam's Sunni-led army, which then regrouped as a core part of ISIS in Iraq.

Next the U.S. teamed up with Saudi Arabia to harass, and then to try to topple Bashir al-Assad. His main crime from the perspective of the U.S. and Saudi Arabia: being too close to Iran. Once again, the U.S. and Saudi Arabia turned to Sunni jihadists with arms and financing, and part of that fighting force morphed into ISIS in Syria. The evidence is that the covert U.S. actions against Assad pre-date the overt U.S. calls for Assad's overthrow in 2011 by at least a couple of years.

In a similar vein, the U.S. teamed up with France and the UK to bomb Libya and kill Muammar Qaddafi. The result has been an ongoing Libyan civil war, and the unleashing of violent jihadists across the African Sahel, including Mali, which suffered the terrorist blow last week at the hands of such marauders.

Thanks to America's misguided policies, we now have wars and violence raging across a 5,000-mile stretch from Bamako, Mali to Kabul, Afghanistan, with a U.S. hand in starting and stoking the violence. Libya, Sudan, the Sinai, Gaza, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan are all cases where the U.S. has directly intervened with very adverse results. Mali, Chad, Central African Republic, Somalia are some of the many other countries indirectly caught up in turmoil unleashed by U.S. covert and overt operations....


Jeffrey D. Sachs is the director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University.

pgl said in reply to anne...
Jeff Sachs is right to praise Kennedy for not falling in line with the anti Castro nutcases. But he just skipped over Kennedy's blunder re Vietnam. It was the dumbest thing we had ever done. But then came March 2003 and Iraq. Hillary Clinton may be too eager for regime change but the Republicans want to redo the Crusades.
ilsm said in reply to pgl...
Lodge etc. were being lied to by the pentagon reps in RVN, but JFK kept the lid on advisors.

The big mistake on Vietnam was LBJ assuming Goldwater was right.

That said JFK helped usher in the concept of "flexible response" which moved US closer to fitting out US forces for the past 50 years' quagmires.

Keenan's containment strategy was ruined by NSC 68 which put pentagon responses senior to State.

pgl said in reply to ilsm...
The big mistake on Vietnam was listening to Dean Rusk and Robert McNamara. The Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld of the 1960's.
RGC said in reply to anne...
A Timeline of CIA Atrocities

By Steve Kangas

The following timeline describes just a few of the hundreds of atrocities and crimes committed by the CIA (1)

CIA operations follow the same recurring script. First, American business interests abroad are threatened by a popular or democratically elected leader. The people support their leader because he intends to conduct land reform, strengthen unions, redistribute wealth, nationalize foreign-owned industry, and regulate business to protect workers, consumers and the environment. So, on behalf of American business, and often with their help, the CIA mobilizes the opposition. First it identifies right-wing groups within the country (usually the military), and offers them a deal: "We'll put you in power if you maintain a favorable business climate for us." The Agency then hires, trains and works with them to overthrow the existing government (usually a democracy). It uses every trick in the book: propaganda, stuffed ballot boxes, purchased elections, extortion, blackmail, sexual intrigue, false stories about opponents in the local media, infiltration and disruption of opposing political parties, kidnapping, beating, torture, intimidation, economic sabotage, death squads and even assassination. These efforts culminate in a military coup, which installs a right-wing dictator. The CIA trains the dictator's security apparatus to crack down on the traditional enemies of big business, using interrogation, torture and murder. The victims are said to be "communists," but almost always they are just peasants, liberals, moderates, labor union leaders, political opponents and advocates of free speech and democracy. Widespread human rights abuses follow.

This scenario has been repeated so many times that the CIA actually teaches it in a special school, the notorious "School of the Americas." (It opened in Panama but later moved to Fort Benning, Georgia.) Critics have nicknamed it the "School of the Dictators" and "School of the Assassins." Here, the CIA trains Latin American military officers how to conduct coups, including the use of interrogation, torture and murder.

The Association for Responsible Dissent estimates that by 1987, 6 million people had died as a result of CIA covert operations. (2) Former State Department official William Blum correctly calls this an "American Holocaust."

The CIA justifies these actions as part of its war against communism. But most coups do not involve a communist threat. Unlucky nations are targeted for a wide variety of reasons: not only threats to American business interests abroad, but also liberal or even moderate social reforms, political instability, the unwillingness of a leader to carry out Washington's dictates, and declarations of neutrality in the Cold War. Indeed, nothing has infuriated CIA Directors quite like a nation's desire to stay out of the Cold War.

The ironic thing about all this intervention is that it frequently fails to achieve American objectives. Often the newly installed dictator grows comfortable with the security apparatus the CIA has built for him. He becomes an expert at running a police state. And because the dictator knows he cannot be overthrown, he becomes independent and defiant of Washington's will. The CIA then finds it cannot overthrow him, because the police and military are under the dictator's control, afraid to cooperate with American spies for fear of torture and execution. The only two options for the U.S at this point are impotence or war. Examples of this "boomerang effect" include the Shah of Iran, General Noriega and Saddam Hussein. The boomerang effect also explains why the CIA has proven highly successful at overthrowing democracies, but a wretched failure at overthrowing dictatorships.

The following timeline should confirm that the CIA as we know it should be abolished and replaced by a true information-gathering and analysis organization. The CIA cannot be reformed - it is institutionally and culturally corrupt.

1929

The culture we lost - Secretary of State Henry Stimson refuses to endorse a code-breaking operation, saying, "Gentlemen do not read each other's mail."

1941

COI created - In preparation for World War II, President Roosevelt creates the Office of Coordinator of Information (COI). General William "Wild Bill" Donovan heads the new intelligence service.

1942

OSS created - Roosevelt restructures COI into something more suitable for covert action, the Office of Strategic Services (OSS). Donovan recruits so many of the nation's rich and powerful that eventually people joke that "OSS" stands for "Oh, so social!" or "Oh, such snobs!"

1943

Italy - Donovan recruits the Catholic Church in Rome to be the center of Anglo-American spy operations in Fascist Italy. This would prove to be one of America's most enduring intelligence alliances in the Cold War.

1945

OSS is abolished - The remaining American information agencies cease covert actions and return to harmless information gathering and analysis.

Operation PAPERCLIP – While other American agencies are hunting down Nazi war criminals for arrest, the U.S. intelligence community is smuggling them into America, unpunished, for their use against the Soviets. The most important of these is Reinhard Gehlen, Hitler's master spy who had built up an intelligence network in the Soviet Union. With full U.S. blessing, he creates the "Gehlen Organization," a band of refugee Nazi spies who reactivate their networks in Russia. These include SS intelligence officers Alfred Six and Emil Augsburg (who massacred Jews in the Holocaust), Klaus Barbie (the "Butcher of Lyon"), Otto von Bolschwing (the Holocaust mastermind who worked with Eichmann) and SS Colonel Otto Skorzeny (a personal friend of Hitler's). The Gehlen Organization supplies the U.S. with its only intelligence on the Soviet Union for the next ten years, serving as a bridge between the abolishment of the OSS and the creation of the CIA However, much of the "intelligence" the former Nazis provide is bogus. Gehlen inflates Soviet military capabilities at a time when Russia is still rebuilding its devastated society, in order to inflate his own importance to the Americans (who might otherwise punish him). In 1948, Gehlen almost convinces the Americans that war is imminent, and the West should make a preemptive strike. In the 50s he produces a fictitious "missile gap." To make matters worse, the Russians have thoroughly penetrated the Gehlen Organization with double agents, undermining the very American security that Gehlen was supposed to protect.

1947

Greece - President Truman requests military aid to Greece to support right-wing forces fighting communist rebels. For the rest of the Cold War, Washington and the CIA will back notorious Greek leaders with deplorable human rights records.

CIA created - President Truman signs the National Security Act of 1947, creating the Central Intelligence Agency and National Security Council. The CIA is accountable to the president through the NSC - there is no democratic or congressional oversight. Its charter allows the CIA to "perform such other functions and duties… as the National Security Council may from time to time direct." This loophole opens the door to covert action and dirty tricks.

1948

Covert-action wing created - The CIA recreates a covert action wing, innocuously called the Office of Policy Coordination, led by Wall Street lawyer Frank Wisner. According to its secret charter, its responsibilities include "propaganda, economic warfare, preventive direct action, including sabotage, antisabotage, demolition and evacuation procedures; subversion against hostile states, including assistance to underground resistance groups, and support of indigenous anti-communist elements in threatened countries of the free world."

Italy - The CIA corrupts democratic elections in Italy, where Italian communists threaten to win the elections. The CIA buys votes, broadcasts propaganda, threatens and beats up opposition leaders, and infiltrates and disrupts their organizations. It works -- the communists are defeated.

1949

Radio Free Europe - The CIA creates its first major propaganda outlet, Radio Free Europe. Over the next several decades, its broadcasts are so blatantly false that for a time it is considered illegal to publish transcripts of them in the U.S.

Late 40s

Operation MOCKINGBIRD - The CIA begins recruiting American news organizations and journalists to become spies and disseminators of propaganda. The effort is headed by Frank Wisner, Allan Dulles, Richard Helms and Philip Graham. Graham is publisher of The Washington Post, which becomes a major CIA player. Eventually, the CIA's media assets will include ABC, NBC, CBS, Time, Newsweek, Associated Press, United Press International, Reuters, Hearst Newspapers, Scripps-Howard, Copley News Service and more. By the CIA's own admission, at least 25 organizations and 400 journalists will become CIA assets.

1953

Iran – CIA overthrows the democratically elected Mohammed Mossadegh in a military coup, after he threatened to nationalize British oil. The CIA replaces him with a dictator, the Shah of Iran, whose secret police, SAVAK, is as brutal as the Gestapo.

Operation MK-ULTRA - Inspired by North Korea's brainwashing program, the CIA begins experiments on mind control. The most notorious part of this project involves giving LSD and other drugs to American subjects without their knowledge or against their will, causing several to commit suicide. However, the operation involves far more than this. Funded in part by the Rockefeller and Ford foundations, research includes propaganda, brainwashing, public relations, advertising, hypnosis, and other forms of suggestion.

1954

Guatemala - CIA overthrows the democratically elected Jacob Arbenz in a military coup. Arbenz has threatened to nationalize the Rockefeller-owned United Fruit Company, in which CIA Director Allen Dulles also owns stock. Arbenz is replaced with a series of right-wing dictators whose bloodthirsty policies will kill over 100,000 Guatemalans in the next 40 years.

1954-1958

North Vietnam - CIA officer Edward Lansdale spends four years trying to overthrow the communist government of North Vietnam, using all the usual dirty tricks. The CIA also attempts to legitimize a tyrannical puppet regime in South Vietnam, headed by Ngo Dinh Diem. These efforts fail to win the hearts and minds of the South Vietnamese because the Diem government is opposed to true democracy, land reform and poverty reduction measures. The CIA's continuing failure results in escalating American intervention, culminating in the Vietnam War.

1956

Hungary - Radio Free Europe incites Hungary to revolt by broadcasting Khruschev's Secret Speech, in which he denounced Stalin. It also hints that American aid will help the Hungarians fight. This aid fails to materialize as Hungarians launch a doomed armed revolt, which only invites a major Soviet invasion. The conflict kills 7,000 Soviets and 30,000 Hungarians.

1957-1973

Laos - The CIA carries out approximately one coup per year trying to nullify Laos' democratic elections. The problem is the Pathet Lao, a leftist group with enough popular support to be a member of any coalition government. In the late 50s, the CIA even creates an "Armee Clandestine" of Asian mercenaries to attack the Pathet Lao. After the CIA's army suffers numerous defeats, the U.S. starts bombing, dropping more bombs on Laos than all the U.S. bombs dropped in World War II. A quarter of all Laotians will eventually become refugees, many living in caves.

1959

Haiti - The U.S. military helps "Papa Doc" Duvalier become dictator of Haiti. He creates his own private police force, the "Tonton Macoutes," who terrorize the population with machetes. They will kill over 100,000 during the Duvalier family reign. The U.S. does not protest their dismal human rights record.

1961

The Bay of Pigs - The CIA sends 1,500 Cuban exiles to invade Castro's Cuba. But "Operation Mongoose" fails, due to poor planning, security and backing. The planners had imagined that the invasion will spark a popular uprising against Castro -– which never happens. A promised American air strike also never occurs. This is the CIA's first public setback, causing President Kennedy to fire CIA Director Allen Dulles.

Dominican Republic - The CIA assassinates Rafael Trujillo, a murderous dictator Washington has supported since 1930. Trujillo's business interests have grown so large (about 60 percent of the economy) that they have begun competing with American business interests.

Ecuador - The CIA-backed military forces the democratically elected President Jose Velasco to resign. Vice President Carlos Arosemana replaces him; the CIA fills the now vacant vice presidency with its own man.

Congo (Zaire) - The CIA assassinates the democratically elected Patrice Lumumba. However, public support for Lumumba's politics runs so high that the CIA cannot clearly install his opponents in power. Four years of political turmoil follow.

1963

Dominican Republic - The CIA overthrows the democratically elected Juan Bosch in a military coup. The CIA installs a repressive, right-wing junta.

Ecuador - A CIA-backed military coup overthrows President Arosemana, whose independent (not socialist) policies have become unacceptable to Washington. A military junta assumes command, cancels the 1964 elections, and begins abusing human rights.

1964

Brazil - A CIA-backed military coup overthrows the democratically elected government of Joao Goulart. The junta that replaces it will, in the next two decades, become one of the most bloodthirsty in history. General Castelo Branco will create Latin America's first death squads, or bands of secret police who hunt down "communists" for torture, interrogation and murder. Often these "communists" are no more than Branco's political opponents. Later it is revealed that the CIA trains the death squads.

1965

Indonesia - The CIA overthrows the democratically elected Sukarno with a military coup. The CIA has been trying to eliminate Sukarno since 1957, using everything from attempted assassination to sexual intrigue, for nothing more than his declaring neutrality in the Cold War. His successor, General Suharto, will massacre between 500,000 to 1 million civilians accused of being "communist." The CIA supplies the names of countless suspects.

Dominican Republic - A popular rebellion breaks out, promising to reinstall Juan Bosch as the country's elected leader. The revolution is crushed when U.S. Marines land to uphold the military regime by force. The CIA directs everything behind the scenes.

Greece - With the CIA's backing, the king removes George Papandreous as prime minister. Papandreous has failed to vigorously support U.S. interests in Greece.

Congo (Zaire) - A CIA-backed military coup installs Mobutu Sese Seko as dictator. The hated and repressive Mobutu exploits his desperately poor country for billions.

1966

The Ramparts Affair - The radical magazine Ramparts begins a series of unprecedented anti-CIA articles. Among their scoops: the CIA has paid the University of Michigan $25 million dollars to hire "professors" to train South Vietnamese students in covert police methods. MIT and other universities have received similar payments. Ramparts also reveals that the National Students' Association is a CIA front. Students are sometimes recruited through blackmail and bribery, including draft deferments.

1967

Greece - A CIA-backed military coup overthrows the government two days before the elections. The favorite to win was George Papandreous, the liberal candidate. During the next six years, the "reign of the colonels" - backed by the CIA - will usher in the widespread use of torture and murder against political opponents. When a Greek ambassador objects to President Johnson about U.S. plans for Cypress, Johnson tells him: "Fuck your parliament and your constitution."

Operation PHEONIX - The CIA helps South Vietnamese agents identify and then murder alleged Viet Cong leaders operating in South Vietnamese villages. According to a 1971 congressional report, this operation killed about 20,000 "Viet Cong."

1968

Operation CHAOS - The CIA has been illegally spying on American citizens since 1959, but with Operation CHAOS, President Johnson dramatically boosts the effort. CIA agents go undercover as student radicals to spy on and disrupt campus organizations protesting the Vietnam War. They are searching for Russian instigators, which they never find. CHAOS will eventually spy on 7,000 individuals and 1,000 organizations.

Bolivia - A CIA-organized military operation captures legendary guerilla Che Guevara. The CIA wants to keep him alive for interrogation, but the Bolivian government executes him to prevent worldwide calls for clemency.

1969

Uruguay - The notorious CIA torturer Dan Mitrione arrives in Uruguay, a country torn with political strife. Whereas right-wing forces previously used torture only as a last resort, Mitrione convinces them to use it as a routine, widespread practice. "The precise pain, in the precise place, in the precise amount, for the desired effect," is his motto. The torture techniques he teaches to the death squads rival the Nazis'. He eventually becomes so feared that revolutionaries will kidnap and murder him a year later.

1970

Cambodia - The CIA overthrows Prince Sahounek, who is highly popular among Cambodians for keeping them out of the Vietnam War. He is replaced by CIA puppet Lon Nol, who immediately throws Cambodian troops into battle. This unpopular move strengthens once minor opposition parties like the Khmer Rouge, which achieves power in 1975 and massacres millions of its own people.

1971

Bolivia - After half a decade of CIA-inspired political turmoil, a CIA-backed military coup overthrows the leftist President Juan Torres. In the next two years, dictator Hugo Banzer will have over 2,000 political opponents arrested without trial, then tortured, raped and executed.

Haiti - "Papa Doc" Duvalier dies, leaving his 19-year old son "Baby Doc" Duvalier the dictator of Haiti. His son continues his bloody reign with full knowledge of the CIA

1972

The Case-Zablocki Act - Congress passes an act requiring congressional review of executive agreements. In theory, this should make CIA operations more accountable. In fact, it is only marginally effective.

Cambodia - Congress votes to cut off CIA funds for its secret war in Cambodia.

Wagergate Break-in - President Nixon sends in a team of burglars to wiretap Democratic offices at Watergate. The team members have extensive CIA histories, including James McCord, E. Howard Hunt and five of the Cuban burglars. They work for the Committee to Reelect the President (CREEP), which does dirty work like disrupting Democratic campaigns and laundering Nixon's illegal campaign contributions. CREEP's activities are funded and organized by another CIA front, the Mullen Company.

1973

Chile - The CIA overthrows and assassinates Salvador Allende, Latin America's first democratically elected socialist leader. The problems begin when Allende nationalizes American-owned firms in Chile. ITT offers the CIA $1 million for a coup (reportedly refused). The CIA replaces Allende with General Augusto Pinochet, who will torture and murder thousands of his own countrymen in a crackdown on labor leaders and the political left.

CIA begins internal investigations - William Colby, the Deputy Director for Operations, orders all CIA personnel to report any and all illegal activities they know about. This information is later reported to Congress.

Watergate Scandal - The CIA's main collaborating newspaper in America, The Washington Post, reports Nixon's crimes long before any other newspaper takes up the subject. The two reporters, Woodward and Bernstein, make almost no mention of the CIA's many fingerprints all over the scandal. It is later revealed that Woodward was a Naval intelligence briefer to the White House, and knows many important intelligence figures, including General Alexander Haig. His main source, "Deep Throat," is probably one of those.

CIA Director Helms Fired - President Nixon fires CIA Director Richard Helms for failing to help cover up the Watergate scandal. Helms and Nixon have always disliked each other. The new CIA director is William Colby, who is relatively more open to CIA reform.

1974

CHAOS exposed - Pulitzer prize winning journalist Seymour Hersh publishes a story about Operation CHAOS, the domestic surveillance and infiltration of anti-war and civil rights groups in the U.S. The story sparks national outrage.

Angleton fired - Congress holds hearings on the illegal domestic spying efforts of James Jesus Angleton, the CIA's chief of counterintelligence. His efforts included mail-opening campaigns and secret surveillance of war protesters. The hearings result in his dismissal from the CIA

House clears CIA in Watergate - The House of Representatives clears the CIA of any complicity in Nixon's Watergate break-in.

The Hughes Ryan Act - Congress passes an amendment requiring the president to report nonintelligence CIA operations to the relevant congressional committees in a timely fashion.

1975

Australia - The CIA helps topple the democratically elected, left-leaning government of Prime Minister Edward Whitlam. The CIA does this by giving an ultimatum to its Governor-General, John Kerr. Kerr, a longtime CIA collaborator, exercises his constitutional right to dissolve the Whitlam government. The Governor-General is a largely ceremonial position appointed by the Queen; the Prime Minister is democratically elected. The use of this archaic and never-used law stuns the nation.

Angola - Eager to demonstrate American military resolve after its defeat in Vietnam, Henry Kissinger launches a CIA-backed war in Angola. Contrary to Kissinger's assertions, Angola is a country of little strategic importance and not seriously threatened by communism. The CIA backs the brutal leader of UNITAS, Jonas Savimbi. This polarizes Angolan politics and drives his opponents into the arms of Cuba and the Soviet Union for survival. Congress will cut off funds in 1976, but the CIA is able to run the war off the books until 1984, when funding is legalized again. This entirely pointless war kills over 300,000 Angolans.

"The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence" - Victor Marchetti and John Marks publish this whistle-blowing history of CIA crimes and abuses. Marchetti has spent 14 years in the CIA, eventually becoming an executive assistant to the Deputy Director of Intelligence. Marks has spent five years as an intelligence official in the State Department.

"Inside the Company" - Philip Agee publishes a diary of his life inside the CIA Agee has worked in covert operations in Latin America during the 60s, and details the crimes in which he took part.

Congress investigates CIA wrong-doing - Public outrage compels Congress to hold hearings on CIA crimes. Senator Frank Church heads the Senate investigation ("The Church Committee"), and Representative Otis Pike heads the House investigation. (Despite a 98 percent incumbency reelection rate, both Church and Pike are defeated in the next elections.) The investigations lead to a number of reforms intended to increase the CIA's accountability to Congress, including the creation of a standing Senate committee on intelligence. However, the reforms prove ineffective, as the Iran/Contra scandal will show. It turns out the CIA can control, deal with or sidestep Congress with ease.

The Rockefeller Commission - In an attempt to reduce the damage done by the Church Committee, President Ford creates the "Rockefeller Commission" to whitewash CIA history and propose toothless reforms. The commission's namesake, Vice President Nelson Rockefeller, is himself a major CIA figure. Five of the commission's eight members are also members of the Council on Foreign Relations, a CIA-dominated organization.

1979

Iran - The CIA fails to predict the fall of the Shah of Iran, a longtime CIA puppet, and the rise of Muslim fundamentalists who are furious at the CIA's backing of SAVAK, the Shah's bloodthirsty secret police. In revenge, the Muslims take 52 Americans hostage in the U.S. embassy in Tehran.

Afghanistan - The Soviets invade Afghanistan. The CIA immediately begins supplying arms to any faction willing to fight the occupying Soviets. Such indiscriminate arming means that when the Soviets leave Afghanistan, civil war will erupt. Also, fanatical Muslim extremists now possess state-of-the-art weaponry. One of these is Sheik Abdel Rahman, who will become involved in the World Trade Center bombing in New York.

El Salvador - An idealistic group of young military officers, repulsed by the massacre of the poor, overthrows the right-wing government. However, the U.S. compels the inexperienced officers to include many of the old guard in key positions in their new government. Soon, things are back to "normal" - the military government is repressing and killing poor civilian protesters. Many of the young military and civilian reformers, finding themselves powerless, resign in disgust.

Nicaragua - Anastasios Samoza II, the CIA-backed dictator, falls. The Marxist Sandinistas take over government, and they are initially popular because of their commitment to land and anti-poverty reform. Samoza had a murderous and hated personal army called the National Guard. Remnants of the Guard will become the Contras, who fight a CIA-backed guerilla war against the Sandinista government throughout the 1980s.

1980

El Salvador - The Archbishop of San Salvador, Oscar Romero, pleads with President Carter "Christian to Christian" to stop aiding the military government slaughtering his people. Carter refuses. Shortly afterwards, right-wing leader Roberto D'Aubuisson has Romero shot through the heart while saying Mass. The country soon dissolves into civil war, with the peasants in the hills fighting against the military government. The CIA and U.S. Armed Forces supply the government with overwhelming military and intelligence superiority. CIA-trained death squads roam the countryside, committing atrocities like that of El Mazote in 1982, where they massacre between 700 and 1000 men, women and children. By 1992, some 63,000 Salvadorans will be killed.

1981

Iran/Contra Begins - The CIA begins selling arms to Iran at high prices, using the profits to arm the Contras fighting the Sandinista government in Nicaragua. President Reagan vows that the Sandinistas will be "pressured" until "they say 'uncle.'" The CIA's Freedom Fighter's Manual disbursed to the Contras includes instruction on economic sabotage, propaganda, extortion, bribery, blackmail, interrogation, torture, murder and political assassination.

1983

Honduras - The CIA gives Honduran military officers the Human Resource Exploitation Training Manual – 1983, which teaches how to torture people. Honduras' notorious "Battalion 316" then uses these techniques, with the CIA's full knowledge, on thousands of leftist dissidents. At least 184 are murdered.

1984

The Boland Amendment - The last of a series of Boland Amendments is passed. These amendments have reduced CIA aid to the Contras; the last one cuts it off completely. However, CIA Director William Casey is already prepared to "hand off" the operation to Colonel Oliver North, who illegally continues supplying the Contras through the CIA's informal, secret, and self-financing network. This includes "humanitarian aid" donated by Adolph Coors and William Simon, and military aid funded by Iranian arms sales.

1986

Eugene Hasenfus - Nicaragua shoots down a C-123 transport plane carrying military supplies to the Contras. The lone survivor, Eugene Hasenfus, turns out to be a CIA employee, as are the two dead pilots. The airplane belongs to Southern Air Transport, a CIA front. The incident makes a mockery of President Reagan's claims that the CIA is not illegally arming the Contras.

Iran/Contra Scandal - Although the details have long been known, the Iran/Contra scandal finally captures the media's attention in 1986. Congress holds hearings, and several key figures (like Oliver North) lie under oath to protect the intelligence community. CIA Director William Casey dies of brain cancer before Congress can question him. All reforms enacted by Congress after the scandal are purely cosmetic.

Haiti - Rising popular revolt in Haiti means that "Baby Doc" Duvalier will remain "President for Life" only if he has a short one. The U.S., which hates instability in a puppet country, flies the despotic Duvalier to the South of France for a comfortable retirement. The CIA then rigs the upcoming elections in favor of another right-wing military strongman. However, violence keeps the country in political turmoil for another four years. The CIA tries to strengthen the military by creating the National Intelligence Service (SIN), which suppresses popular revolt through torture and assassination.

1989

Panama - The U.S. invades Panama to overthrow a dictator of its own making, General Manuel Noriega. Noriega has been on the CIA's payroll since 1966, and has been transporting drugs with the CIA's knowledge since 1972. By the late 80s, Noriega's growing independence and intransigence have angered Washington… so out he goes.

1990

Haiti - Competing against 10 comparatively wealthy candidates, leftist priest Jean-Bertrand Aristide captures 68 percent of the vote. After only eight months in power, however, the CIA-backed military deposes him. More military dictators brutalize the country, as thousands of Haitian refugees escape the turmoil in barely seaworthy boats. As popular opinion calls for Aristide's return, the CIA begins a disinformation campaign painting the courageous priest as mentally unstable.

1991

The Gulf War - The U.S. liberates Kuwait from Iraq. But Iraq's dictator, Saddam Hussein, is another creature of the CIA With U.S. encouragement, Hussein invaded Iran in 1980. During this costly eight-year war, the CIA built up Hussein's forces with sophisticated arms, intelligence, training and financial backing. This cemented Hussein's power at home, allowing him to crush the many internal rebellions that erupted from time to time, sometimes with poison gas. It also gave him all the military might he needed to conduct further adventurism - in Kuwait, for example.

The Fall of the Soviet Union - The CIA fails to predict this most important event of the Cold War. This suggests that it has been so busy undermining governments that it hasn't been doing its primary job: gathering and analyzing information. The fall of the Soviet Union also robs the CIA of its reason for existence: fighting communism. This leads some to accuse the CIA of intentionally failing to predict the downfall of the Soviet Union. Curiously, the intelligence community's budget is not significantly reduced after the demise of communism.

1992

Economic Espionage - In the years following the end of the Cold War, the CIA is increasingly used for economic espionage. This involves stealing the technological secrets of competing foreign companies and giving them to American ones. Given the CIA's clear preference for dirty tricks over mere information gathering, the possibility of serious criminal behavior is very great indeed.

1993

Haiti - The chaos in Haiti grows so bad that President Clinton has no choice but to remove the Haitian military dictator, Raoul Cedras, on threat of U.S. invasion. The U.S. occupiers do not arrest Haiti's military leaders for crimes against humanity, but instead ensure their safety and rich retirements. Aristide is returned to power only after being forced to accept an agenda favorable to the country's ruling class.

EPILOGUE

In a speech before the CIA celebrating its 50th anniversary, President Clinton said: "By necessity, the American people will never know the full story of your courage."

Clinton's is a common defense of the CIA: namely, the American people should stop criticizing the CIA because they don't know what it really does. This, of course, is the heart of the problem in the first place. An agency that is above criticism is also above moral behavior and reform. Its secrecy and lack of accountability allows its corruption to grow unchecked.

Furthermore, Clinton's statement is simply untrue. The history of the agency is growing painfully clear, especially with the declassification of historical CIA documents. We may not know the details of specific operations, but we do know, quite well, the general behavior of the CIA These facts began emerging nearly two decades ago at an ever-quickening pace. Today we have a remarkably accurate and consistent picture, repeated in country after country, and verified from countless different directions.

The CIA's response to this growing knowledge and criticism follows a typical historical pattern. (Indeed, there are remarkable parallels to the Medieval Church's fight against the Scientific Revolution.) The first journalists and writers to reveal the CIA's criminal behavior were harassed and censored if they were American writers, and tortured and murdered if they were foreigners. (See Philip Agee's On the Run for an example of early harassment.) However, over the last two decades the tide of evidence has become overwhelming, and the CIA has found that it does not have enough fingers to plug every hole in the dike. This is especially true in the age of the Internet, where information flows freely among millions of people. Since censorship is impossible, the Agency must now defend itself with apologetics. Clinton's "Americans will never know" defense is a prime example.

Another common apologetic is that "the world is filled with unsavory characters, and we must deal with them if we are to protect American interests at all." There are two things wrong with this. First, it ignores the fact that the CIA has regularly spurned alliances with defenders of democracy, free speech and human rights, preferring the company of military dictators and tyrants. The CIA had moral options available to them, but did not take them.

Second, this argument begs several questions. The first is: "Which American interests?" The CIA has courted right-wing dictators because they allow wealthy Americans to exploit the country's cheap labor and resources. But poor and middle-class Americans pay the price whenever they fight the wars that stem from CIA actions, from Vietnam to the Gulf War to Panama. The second begged question is: "Why should American interests come at the expense of other peoples' human rights?"

The CIA should be abolished, its leadership dismissed and its relevant members tried for crimes against humanity. Our intelligence community should be rebuilt from the ground up, with the goal of collecting and analyzing information. As for covert action, there are two moral options. The first one is to eliminate covert action completely. But this gives jitters to people worried about the Adolf Hitlers of the world. So a second option is that we can place covert action under extensive and true democratic oversight. For example, a bipartisan Congressional Committee of 40 members could review and veto all aspects of CIA operations upon a majority or super-majority vote. Which of these two options is best may be the subject of debate, but one thing is clear: like dictatorship, like monarchy, unaccountable covert operations should die like the dinosaurs they are.

http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/CIAtimeline.html

pgl said in reply to RGC...
Wow - that's a list. My focus:

"1954-1958

North Vietnam - CIA officer Edward Lansdale spends four years trying to overthrow the communist government of North Vietnam, using all the usual dirty tricks. The CIA also attempts to legitimize a tyrannical puppet regime in South Vietnam, headed by Ngo Dinh Diem. These efforts fail to win the hearts and minds of the South Vietnamese because the Diem government is opposed to true democracy, land reform and poverty reduction measures. The CIA's continuing failure results in escalating American intervention, culminating in the Vietnam War."

We should have let the elections of 1956 go forward. Had we - we could have avoided the entire Vietnam disaster.

RGC said in reply to pgl...
When you look at that list and you realize that it was done in our name and we were funding it, it might piss you off a little.
Fred C. Dobbs said...
'Thinking About the Trumpthinkable' - Paul Krugman

Alan Abramowitz reads the latest WaPo poll and emails:

'Read these results and tell me how Trump doesn't win the Republican nomination? I've been very skeptical about this all along, but I'm starting to change my mind. I think there's at least a pretty decent chance that Trump will be the nominee.' ...

Related:

Is Hillary Clinton Any Good at Running for President? http://nym.ag/1DwluuR via @NYmag - Jazon Zengerle - April 5

... The election model that's most in vogue - that scored the highest when applied to presidential elections since World War II, correctly predicting every outcome since 1992 - is one created by Emory political scientist Alan Abramowitz called "Time for a Change." Abramowitz argues that the fundamentals in a presidential election are bedevilingly simple: the incumbent president's approval rating in late June or early July, the rate of real GDP growth in the second quarter, and how many terms the party has been in the White House.

In 2012, for instance, Obama's relatively lopsided victory may have shocked Republicans on Election Night, but by Abramowitz's reckoning it was practically preordained. Although second-quarter real GDP growth was a relatively unimpressive 1.5 percent and Obama's approval rating was a good-but-not-great 46 percent that June, he was seeking reelection, and, according to Abramowitz, "first-term incumbents rarely lose." In fact, he believes that being a first-term incumbent is worth 4 percentage points. There was nothing in the Abramowitz model that looked good for John McCain in 2008 (bad economy, bad approval ratings of a second-term president from McCain's party). In 1988, by contrast, George H.W. Bush was also running to give his party a third term, but Q2 real GDP growth that year was a booming 5.24 percent and Ronald Reagan's approval rating was above 50 percent.

Sound familiar? "If Obama's approval rating is close to 50 percent and the economy is growing at a decent rate in the fall of 2016 - both of which seem quite possible, maybe even likely - then I think Hillary Clinton would have a decent chance of winning," Abramowitz says. But then there's the "Time for a Change" factor and those four extra points Obama enjoyed in 2012 that Hillary won't have this time around. In other words, it would be an extremely close race.

Which brings us full circle. "What determines the outcome in 2016," Abramowitz says, "could very well be the quality of the candidates." ...

Fred C. Dobbs said in reply to Fred C. Dobbs...
Tweet: @AlanIAbramowitz
Trump exploits a crack
in the GOP's foundation
http://wpo.st/ZHHn0

Fareed Zakaria - Washington Post - November 12

Today's conventional wisdom is that Donald Trump's best days are behind him and that his poll numbers will soon descend. Maybe. But Trump has come to represent something fundamental about the Republican Party: the growing gap between its leaders and its political constituency. Even if he disappears, this gap is reshaping the GOP.

At the start, Trump's campaign was based largely on his personality. On the issues, he had a grab bag of positions and lacked coherence and consistency. But like a good businessman, he seems to have studied his customers - the Republican electorate - and decided to give them what they want. And what they want is not what their party leaders stand for. ...

pgl said in reply to Fred C. Dobbs...
"On the issues, he had a grab bag of positions and lacked coherence and consistency. But like a good businessman, he seems to have studied his customers - the Republican electorate - and decided to give them what they want. And what they want is not what their party leaders stand for"

What his customers want is racism. And guess what - the alleged party leaders are racing to the front to see who can be the most racist. This party has become a dysfunctional disgrace.

[Oct 28, 2015] IT IS 3 MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT

Notable quotes:
"... Meanwhile, the United States and Russia have embarked on massive programs to modernize their nuclear triads - thereby undermining existing nuclear weapons treaties. "The clock ticks now at just three minutes to midnight because international leaders are failing to perform their most important duty-ensuring and preserving the health and vitality of human civilization." ..."
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

"Unchecked climate change, global nuclear weapons modernizations, and outsized nuclear weapons arsenals pose extraordinary and undeniable threats to the continued existence of humanity, and world leaders have failed to act with the speed or on the scale required to protect citizens from potential catastrophe. These failures of political leadership endanger every person on Earth." Despite some modestly positive developments in the climate change arena, current efforts are entirely insufficient to prevent a catastrophic warming of Earth.

Meanwhile, the United States and Russia have embarked on massive programs to modernize their nuclear triads - thereby undermining existing nuclear weapons treaties. "The clock ticks now at just three minutes to midnight because international leaders are failing to perform their most important duty-ensuring and preserving the health and vitality of human civilization."

[Oct 21, 2015] Andrew Bacevich A Decade of War

May 15, 2012 | YouTube

Qeis Kamran 1 year ago

I just love Prof. Bacevic. Nobody has more credit then him on the subject. Not only for his unmatched scholarship and laser sharp words, but moreover for the unimaginable personal loss. He is my hero!!!!

Boogie Knight 1 year ago

How many sons did the NeoCon-Gang sacrifice in their instigated Wars in foreign lands....? Not one. Bacevich lost his son who was fighting in Iraq in 2007 - for what?!

Yet the NeoCon warcriminals Billy Cristol, Wolfowitz and/or Elliott Abrams are all still highly respected people that the US media/political elite loves to consult - in 2014!

[Oct 21, 2015] The End of American Exceptionalism with Andrew J. Bacevich - November 7, 2013

An excellent explanation of the key postulates of Neoconservatism.
Notable quotes:
"... We need to reexamine what it means to be free. A moral reorientation of the country as Carter suggested in 1979. Bacevich says it isnt ever going to happen. ..."
Nov 7, 2003 | YouTube
Phil Anderson
Excellent as always. Lecture by Bacevich starts around 13:42.
Wendell Fitzgerald
We need to reexamine what it means to be free. A moral reorientation of the country as Carter suggested in 1979. Bacevich says it isn't ever going to happen.

Knuth Infrequently Asked Questions

  1. Why does my country have the right to be occupying Iraq?
  2. Why should my country not support an international court of justice?
  3. Is my country not strong enough to achieve its aims fairly?
  4. When the leaders of a country cause it to do terrible things, what is the best way to restore the honor of that country?
  5. Is it possible for potential new leaders to raise questions about their country's possible guilt, without committing political suicide?
  6. Do I deserve retribution from aggrieved people whose lives have been ruined by actions that my leaders have taken without my consent?
  7. How can I best help set in motion a process by which reparations are made to people who have been harmed by unjust deeds of my country?
  8. If day after day goes by with nobody discussing uncomfortable questions like these, won't the good people of my country be guilty of making things worse?

Alas, I cannot think of a satisfactory answer to any of these questions. I believe the answer to number 6 is still no; yet I fear that a yes answer is continually becoming more and more appropriate, as month upon month goes by without any significant change to the status quo.

Perhaps the best clues to the outlines of successful answers can be found in a wonderful speech that Richard von Weizsäcker gave in 1985.

The time in which I write ... has a horribly swollen belly, it carries in its womb a national catastrophe ... Even an ignominious issue remains something other and more normal than the judgment that now hangs over us, such as once fell on Sodom and Gomorrah ... That it approaches, that it long since became inevitable: of that I cannot believe anybody still cherishes the smallest doubt. ... That it remains shrouded in silence is uncanny enough. It is already uncanny when among a great host of the blind some few who have the use of their eyes must live with sealed lips. But it becomes sheer horror, so it seems to me, when everybody knows and everybody is bound to silence, while we read the truth from each other in eyes that stare or else shun a meeting.

Germany ... today, clung round by demons, a hand over one eye, with the other staring into horrors, down she flings from despair to despair. When will she reach the bottom of the abyss? When, out of uttermost hopelessness --- a miracle beyond the power of belief --- will the light of hope dawn? A lonely man folds his hands and speaks: ``God be merciful to thy poor soul, my friend, my Fatherland!''

-- Thomas Mann, Dr. Faustus (1947, written in 1945)
[excerpts from chapter 33 and the epilogue]

Democrats has a hidden pro-war bias

by: nbrown on Jun 12, 2006 12:37 AM

I know some people will dismiss my claim out of hand -- life's easy that way -- but it won't stop me from expressing myself.

This article has a hidden pro-war bias. Its bias comes in the form of whitewashing the Democratic Party's support for the Iraq war. By focusing only on the Repugs, the author encourages a shift of power from one pro-war party to another. Thus, preserving the "war effort."

How does the Democratic Party support the war? you ask. Good question. Although a slight majority of Dems voted against the Iraq invasion, that vote has since been overwritten by new ones that fund the war in Iraq. And unfortunately, those votes are widly lopsided, sometimes even 100-0 in the US Senate to bomb and destroy Iraq.

Some people say, "But Bush tricked the Dems into voting for the war!" Let's take that at face value: George W. Bush, who is as dumb as a sack of rocks, "tricked" the Democrats? Have a little self respect.

But then there's the problem of Hillary Clinton -- she voted FOR the war. If it's true Bush lied about the intelligence, and Clinton knew otherwise, why did she vote for the war in Iraq? What a sick and twisted bitch!

And then there's Ted Kennedy -- after deciding Iraq is "Bush's Vietnam," as he puts it, that's when he started voting to fund the war in Iraq. What's that -- a Democrat voting for another Vietnam? Please don't try to spin -- just admit Kennedy is either a liar or a lunatic or both.

I am not trying to divert the argument away from the insanity of the Republican Party. I merely wish to point out that both parties are in league with eachother on the war.

The partisan connection people have to the Democratic Party is a tragedy for the antiwar movement. It means there can be no serious resistance, and thus no end, to the war.

The Blog Jayne Lyn Stahl A Nation Deceived A Work in Progress

The Huffington Post
When I asked Ed, a 7 time Emmy winning actor, who has an inspired history of advocacy for progressive social change, why he decided to play Old Man in this performance, he said the play "is a beautiful indictment-a great amassing of a lot of information in the so-called liberal press." Long renowned as a vocal, and muscular opponent of U.S. policy in Central America, and Iraq, a great civil libertarian, a crusader to free Mumia Abu-Jamal, as well as one who supports, and contributes to Fresh Start, a program to feed the homeless in Walnut Creek; Ed is no stranger to the struggle for truth and justice..

When asked if he thinks we can expect major change if Pelosi takes over as Speaker of the House, and if he thinks the theatre is empowered to act as a catalyst for much-needed congressional investigations into wrongdoing in Iraq, Ed responded "I don't think it's a play that's going to make Nancy Pelosi come around. The play may motivate people to make bodies of others that will then motivate certain committee chairmen of Congress; only through committee chair can we discover malfeasance and hopefully those committee chairs will energize Pelosi to conduct further investigations and possibly impeachment."

On the couch in the lobby where we sat, Craig nursed a tepid cup of coffee; "My goal is to remind people of the elegance of a society in which the law is above the king," he tells me. Barnes not only wrote "A Nation Deceived," which premiered in Santa Fe in late September, but directed it, and he plays Dick Cheney's lawyer, Samuel Pounder. A trial lawyer, an accomplished environmental law specialist, author, playwright and essayist, he was involved, for more than 13 years, in negotiations with the Soviet Union on issues of war and peace, the environment, and ethnic cleansing. Barnes even ran for Congress, back in 1970, as a Democratic candidate from Colorado.

His play, a self-described "draft," is a work in progress not unlike the concept of democracy itself. It is theatre with a clear-cut objective, which is for the viewer, or reader to share the play with others, as well as participate in re-creating it. One can think of few nights better than this, the night before an historic midterm election, to let one's imagination run wild, and entertain thoughts of what it might be like if Congress were to be in the hands of those folks who ask the hard questions, and are relentless in their pursuit of accountability. What better time, too, to think about what it might be like if the people were, once again, to own the government.

The theme of "A Nation Deceived," the story of a trial that takes place in the Court of Common Opinion, in which the defendants are President Bush, Vice President Cheney, and Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, who are tried as felons, and represented by their respective attorneys, Ranger, Pounder, and Chance is that government belongs to the people who "never rest." . The prosecutor, Old Man, a feisty, larger than life country lawyer, played passionately by Ed Asner, represents the will of the people in challenging the big gun Washington defense team.

While the entire play takes place in court. it is, as Barnes writes, "one step in a program to spread the arguments and information concerning the buildup to the war, its defenses, its contradictions, and its claimed necessity to the country at large." The trial is based on tangible, documented evidence which is part of the public record, and especially resonates in light of the recent announcement, by Agence France Presse , that the Center for Constitutional Rights, along with other "civic groups," has initiated a criminal complaint in Germany, this week, against U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, and others, on charges of "war crimes in the context of a war on terror."

CCR is requesting that the German Federal Prosecutor do essentially as Old Man has, begin an inquiry, and ultimately criminally prosecute heads of state for conduct unbecoming rules of engagement during wartime. While there are major differences between a theatrical piece and the real life criminal complaint against Donald Rumsfeld, the resemblance is stunning in that, if nothing else, it shows that life and theatre often inhabit parallel universes ..

The world of "A Nation Deceived" has, as its nexus, the discovery of the "Black Gold Exhibit," a national security document, AKA "the Oil Exhibit," a list of 30 countries, excluding the U.S., lined up to benefit from Iraqi oil in the months before 9/11, thus "the motive" for the American invasion of Iraq.. Old Man argues: "If something was not done to remove Saddam Hussein from power every one of those 30 countries was in line ahead of the U.S. for the huge resources of Iraqi oil."

Ironically, but aptly, it is Bush's attorney, Ranger, who, in a fit of conscience, hands the Oil Exhibit, a key piece of evidence for the prosecution, over to Old Man who asks: "What did this war accomplish for democracy? Nothing. What did it accomplish for Halliburton? Well, it erased the 30 countries on the Black Gold list, that's what. And these three defendants (Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld) are now in charge of who gets that oil. No failure in Iraq for them. That is a completely successful result, if your purpose, all along, was only oil."

That the tenets and tenacity of these charges, and prosecution, are commonplace to the viewing audience today attests to the potency of the Internet with respect to instant news. That said, anyone who came to this performance expecting traditional theatre was in for a surprise. This piece is about as much like other courtroom dramas as Brigitte Bardot is like Edi Amin; it is not speculative, but exploratory in its insistence upon raising crucial, and compelling questions not only about the chicanery, and incompetence behind the buildup to war, but the culture of intellectual lassitude that went along for the ride. Moreover, among the play's conclusions is the prospect of yet another imminent pre-emptive strike, in Iran, based on the manufacture of selectively deceptive intelligence. So it is, then, that "A Nation Deceived" demands of us that we ask not only who lied, and why, but how we allowed ourselves to be duped; there is an odor not just of "mendacity" here, but of complicity.

Importantly, Barnes' attitude toward his work is not proprietary; he welcomes collaboration from the audience, and fellow performers. Sometimes, one feels as if he views history itself as his collaborator; sometimes, we agree, if it can be argued that history, too, takes place inside an imaginary courtroom.

When I asked Craig why he chose to write plays, he told me "Telling stories is more important as a catalyst for change than trying lawsuits." That said, "A Nation Deceived" is, in point of fact, about a lawyer, for the people, who acts as prosecutor against the key deciders in any wartime scenario, the president, vice president, and secretary of defense. The difference is that the courtroom, in question, is "The Court of Common Opinion," not a federal court, and that all proceeds from the these performances go towards spreading the discourse, and developing the Web site, www.anationdeceived.org, where one may also find the play.

Moreover, one of the principal virtues of "A Nation Deceived" is that it is protean, not something static and fixed; a project rather than a finished product. And, as such, it is more than a referendum on the legality of the Iraq war, but is an innovative, interactive approach to theatre. What's more, as should come as no surprise, the dialogue was authentic; the acting dynamic with stellar performances by Ed Asner, Craig Barnes, and Leith Burke.

"A Nation Deceived" may be seen as a dramatic investigation of prewar intelligence, an exploration of probative arguments, as well as an indictment of a judicial system that stacks government heavyweights against Everyman. But, in the final analysis, the play is a clever and conceptually compelling way to obviate the charge, however reasonable, that it is little more than an exercise in political didacticism. Instead, we, in the audience, get to look through a window at a system that is broken, yet still manages to offer up the specter of social justice in lieu of religious redemption.

On the long drive back to Ventura from Venice, I found myself thinking about what Ed Asner meant when he said that playing Old Man is one of his "geschrei (screams)," and how many more geschrei it may take before "a nation deceived" becomes a nation relieved.

Soldiering, Morality and Criminality in an Unjust War by James Bieda

Apr 22 2013 | www.e-ir.info

This content was written by a student and assessed as part of a university degree. E-IR publishes student essays & dissertations to allow our readers to broaden their understanding of what is possible when answering similar questions in their own studies.

Is a Soldier Who Fights Justly a Moral Criminal for Fighting in a War That is Either Illegal or Unjust?

Is a soldier who fights justly a moral criminal for fighting in a war that is either illegal or unjust? This question is at the centre of a new debate that pits a widely held and legally embedded principle of war, that soldiers have equal rights and responsibilities regardless of whether they are on the 'side of the just' or not, against a set of unusual new arguments (Rodin and Shue, 2008). These arguments dispute the view that the rules governing the morality of going to war, jus ad bellum, and the rules governing what soldiers can do in war, jus in bello, are logically independent.

In this paper I will begin by outlining the traditional just war viewpoint before examining certain arguments that have been offered in support of the idea that jus ad bellum and jus in bello rules are connected in some way. I will then discuss the fundamental objections to these arguments before challenging more directly the most prominent defender of them: Jeff McMahan.

The Traditional Theory of the Just War

As with so much in contemporary just war theory the starting point is Michael Walzer's eloquent argument in Just and Unjust Wars. Here Walzer (2006a) outlines the traditional theory of the just war asserting that it comprises two sets of principles: jus ad bellum and jus in bello. For Walzer these two sets of principles are logically independent as it is perfectly possible for a just war to be fought unjustly and for an unjust war to be fought in strict accordance with the rules (2006a).[1]

Walzer (2006a) asserts that this separation between jus ad bellum and jus in bello has two important features. Firstly, soldiers have an equal right to kill enemy combatants (2006a). Simply by fighting soldiers lose their right to life and liberty (2006a). Consequently a soldier fighting for an unjust cause is not a moral criminal if he, by fighting justly, kills another combatant. This view, which suggests that soldiers on both sides of any conflict have the same war rights is referred to by Walzer as the moral equality of soldiers (2006a). The second feature is that non-combatants retain their title to life and liberty and must not be attacked.

Traditional just war theory, as well as the current laws of armed conflict, therefore assumes two theses:

1. The independence thesis which states that the jus in bello rights and obligations of a combatant in war are independent of the jus ad bellum justice of the war in which he or she fights.

2. The symmetry thesis which states that the content of jus in bello rights and obligations are the same for combatants on both sides of any conflict. (Rodin, 2008)

The connection between these two theses is close and is of crucial import to the ethics of war and its theoretical foundation (Rodin, 2008). Taken together the symmetry and independence theses imply that a soldier fighting for an unjust cause is not a moral criminal if he fights justly.

However, both theses are subject to theoretical criticisms. These criticisms propose that the norms of war should be reinterpreted in a way that is asymmetric, meaning that jus in bello rights and obligations are not always the same for combatants on both sides of a conflict, and dependent, suggesting that jus in bello rights are dependent on jus ad bellum justice (Rodin, 2007). These two viewpoints are also closely connected. Consequently, although many authors adopt more complex positions there is a natural juxtaposition between symmetry and independence on the one hand with asymmetry and dependence on the other (Lichtenberg, 2008).[2]

Arguments against Symmetry

The most potent criticisms of the symmetry thesis concern the role of self-defence in the justification of killing in war and the proper interpretation of jus in bello proportionality.

Self Defence

Just war theory states that it is justifiable for combatants to kill enemy soldiers because they pose a threat to them (Walzer, 2006a). Since both just and unjust combatants pose a threat, it follows, all combatants have an equal right to kill enemy soldiers. This also provides an explanation for the principle of non-combatant immunity. As non-combatants pose no threat they are never legitimate targets (Walzer, 2006a). However, asymmetry advocates assert that this explanation appears false by normal standards of both individual self-defence and morality:

It is not true […] that one makes oneself liable to […] attack simply by posing a threat to another. If that were true, those who engage in justified self-defence against a culpable attacker would then lose their right not to be attacked by him […]. The correct criterion of liability to attack […] is not posing a threat […] but moral responsibility for an unjust threat (McMahan, 2008b:21-22).

The crux of this argument is the concept of liability (Kutz, 2008). Merely posing a threat to another is insufficient to establish liability to attack since the threat itself could be wholly justified. An example often produced is that of a police officer using force to prevent a bank robbery (Rodin and Shue, 2008). Asymmetry advocates assert that just warriors are morally equivalent to the police officer using justified force (Rodin, 2008). Since these just warriors are not engaging in unjustified action that could otherwise explain why they would be morally liable to attack, unjust warriors have no moral right to attack them. Consequently, an unjust warrior commits a moral wrong by killing a just combatant (McMahan, 2006).

Proportionality

Jus in bello proportionality holds that for the attainment of a military objective to be permissible its 'bad effects' must not be out of proportion with its 'good effects' (McMahan, 2008a). As with the notion of liability destabilising this concept can produce potent arguments for asymmetry:

It seems clear that obtaining […]'military advantage'[…] has no intrinsic moral value, but obtains what value it has instrumentally from the broader project of which it is a part. This seems to imply that the value of achieving a military objective is determined by the ad bellum justice of the conflict of which it is a part […]. If the war is unjust, then achieving a military outcome advantageous to its end is a moral disvalue (Rodin, 2008:53).

Consequently, all harmful military acts committed by unjust warriors are ipso facto disproportionate and thus war crimes.

Objections to Asymmetry

The above arguments seem to create a compelling case against symmetry. However, the conclusions regarding unjust warriors seem deeply implausible (Lichtenberg, 2008). How can it be that a soldier fighting for an unjust cause is a moral criminal, even if he fights justly? Certainly we do not think of the typical coalition soldier who fought in the Iraq conflict as a criminal. As such

"the apparently scholastic distinction between jus ad bellum and jus in bello, which allows soldiers on each side to engage in attacks on the other, seems to track common sense" (Lichtenberg 2008:113).

Keeping a common sense perspective brings us onto the most obvious and in this author's opinion the most potent objection to asymmetry, that it would give rise to disastrous consequences if it were to be implemented into a working regulatory regime of war (Rodin and Shue, 2008). This objection is known as the pragmatic case for symmetry. It has a number of dimensions.

Epistemic Issues

The case for the equality of combatants begins with an observation of the epistemic constraints under which soldiers fight (Lichtenberg, 2008). In the real world it is extremely difficult to decide where jus ad bellum justice lies and even if there was an uncontroversial account of what a just war is, the epistemic constraints are much greater for soldiers since they have less time for consideration and can be subjected to deception (Rodin and Shue, 2008). Such uncertainties would generate highly undesirable consequences. As almost all unjust combatants will believe or at least claim to believe that their war is just they will claim whatever additional rights are granted to just combatants (McMahan, 2008b). Consequently, the destructiveness of war would increase with no advantage gained by the 'just side' (Roberts, 2008).

Moreover, several factors undermine the possibility of determining the culpability of unjust warriors (Kutz, 2008). Firstly, jus ad bellum is constantly changing. This raises doubts as to whether notice can be given to soldiers about the legality of their actions. Secondly, judgements regarding whether military action can be justified are dependent on success. Success of course is often not apparent until long after the war is over and can always be disputed. Finally, unjust combatants' liability would need to be established on their role as either an accomplice or a co-conspirator. Both of these areas of law are laden with difficulties. Overall, it appears that there are simply not enough normative facts to verify the guilt of unjust combatants. Consequently, 'there is no justifiable form that an institutionalised system of asymmetrically restricted privileges could take' (Kutz, 2008:83).

Victor's Justice

The victorious in war often exact revenge for harms suffered during the course of the conflict (McMahan, 2008b). As such, accepting the view that unjust combatants may be liable to punishment even if they fight justly will expose huge numbers of soldiers to unjust acts of revenge disguised as punitive justice (Kutz, 2008).

Reduced Compliance Incentives

Furthermore, holding unjust combatants liable for fighting would paradoxically reduce their incentive to adhere to jus in bello norms (Shue, 2008). Unjust warriors might conclude that because they are already guilty of a war crime simply by fighting they may as well abandon all restraint in an attempt to win the war as soon and resolutely as possible (Rodin and Shue, 2008).

Ex Ante Agreement

The laws of war depend on warring parties agreeing to them and to be effective such agreements must be arrived at ex ante (Kutz, 2008). The current symmetrical laws of war have been extremely effective in this regard, obtaining agreement between diverse ranges of parties, many of whom have been hostile to one another.

This level of agreement would be unobtainable for asymmetrical rules for two reasons (Roberts, 2008). Firstly, history indicates that when the rules of war are couched in terms that appear to benefit one side other parties often disregard the law (Roberts, 2008). Secondly, when "war is raging, getting agreement among parties as to which side is the more legitimate […] has always been close to impossible" (Roberts, 2008:248).

Law and Morality, Interwoven or Separate?

The pragmatic case for symmetry is highly compelling. Indeed the argument is so compelling that it has forced the most prominent defender of asymmetry, Jeff McMahan, to cling to a somewhat dubious 'solution'. In an attempt to reconcile the case for asymmetry with the powerful pragmatic case against it McMahan (2006; 2008b) proposes that there should be a thorough separation between the laws of war and the morality of war. For McMahan (2008b) the laws of war have to be expressed in symmetrical terms whilst the morality of war, which is concerned with the fundamental rights of combatants and non-combatants, should be asymmetric.

However, there are authoritative objections to the idea that we can distinguish between the morality of war and the laws of war. One such objection is that no war convention is accepted simply because it is believed that it will be useful, it "must first be morally plausible [and] it must correspond to our sense of what is right" (Walzer 2006a:133). Moreover, Shue (2008) asserts that McMahan's proposed separation actually threatens the role of the laws of war themselves. If the morality and laws of war are separate then there are bound to be instances whereby laws and morality conflict. The problem with this is that McMahan's understanding of a morality of war often requires that the laws of war be cast aside in favour of morality. For instance, the morality of war may require an attack on non-combatants even though this violates the conventional requirement of discrimination (McMahan, 2006).

The Rules of Everyday Life and the Rules of War

Even if one accepts McMahan's dubious separation of the laws of war from the morality of war it is still possible to question the morality of war itself, for it is based on undefended assumptions of an implausibly close analogy between the rules of war and the rules of everyday life (Shue, 2008).

The crucial bridge by which McMahan attempts to connect the rules of war and the rules of everyday life is " his insistence that moral liability to attack is a necessary condition of attack during war" (Shue 2008:98). McMahan is thus attempting to inject into war a requirement for the determination of individual moral liability. Combatants should therefore stop using the criteria for a legitimate target embodied in the laws of armed conflict and switch to assessing the individual moral liability of their adversaries (Shue, 2008). However, McMahan only assumes and never proves that in war some kind of individual moral liability to attack, similar to the conception embodied in the moral rules of everyday life, can be, and then ought to be employed rather than the concept of legitimate targets that has evolved through the centuries (Shue, 2008).

McMahan's morality of war, his case for asymmetry, therefore "rests specifically upon the unsupported transference into war of a requirement of individual moral liability to attack, analogous to the requirement that holds generally in ordinary life for ordinary persons" (Shue, 2008:102). Consequently, it is not comprehensible except as the morality of everyday life incorrectly applied to the fundamentally different environment of war (Shue, 2008). As such we can conclude that McMahan's morality of war, which lacks grounding and rests on dubious analogies, remains to be proven (Shue, 2008).

Essentially proponents of asymmetry such as McMahan are chasing a morally appealing yet unachievable dream, a conception of war that does not violate rights, whereby only those morally liable to be killed are killed (Shue, 2008). However, "there is no such kind of war in which death is […] allocated so individually and discriminately' (Shue 2008:100). As such wars cannot be fought without violating rights and the proposition that they can is, as we have seen, an intellectually incoherent and practically impossible position (Rodin and Shue, 2008).

What is needed instead is the development of the morally best laws of war to govern war (Shue, 2008). Laws would be the morally best in that they would take into account fundamental moral considerations whilst being able to function inside deadly combat (Shue, 2008). Moreover, when the laws of war are not the morally best laws for war, the actual legal provisions should be changed (Shue, 2008). However, there is no place for a residual morality of war as imagined by McMahan, which lingers in the shadows continuously competing with the morally best laws of war (Shue, 2008). In essence "where the laws of war are morally justified, there is no function to be performed by a competing 'morality of war' consisting of alternative rules. We do not need a 'morality of war' if we can get a morally justified set of laws of war" (Shue, 2008:89).

Inappropriate Asymmetry?

More fundamentally, McMahan's attempt to save asymmetry by separating the morality of war and the laws of war brings in the question of whether criticism of the traditional approach is appropriate. Did the proponents of symmetry think they were describing the morality of war? I think not. What is more likely is that they were merely attempting to direct the behaviour of those who make war (Lichtenberg, 2008). It therefore appears that the asymmetry thesis is somewhat uncalled for. By way of conclusion the inappropriateness of the thesis is pulled more sharply into focus by Roberts (2008:253-254):

"At a time when jus in bello is under considerable pressure…a philosophical-cum-legal approach that provides some basis for relativising the application of the law on account of the alleged justice of the cause could only too easily be misused […]. Even if this was in no way the intention of those exploring the question of moral inequality on the battlefield, this could be the unintended and unwelcome consequence."

References

Coady, T., 2008. The Status of Combatants. In D. Rodin & H. Shue, eds. 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP. Ch. 8.

Coates, A., 2008. Is the Independent Application of Jus in Bello the way to Limit War? In D. Rodin & H. Shue, eds. 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP. Ch. 9.

Kutz, C., 2005. The Difference Uniforms Make: Collective Violence in Criminal Law and War. Philosophy & Public Affairs, 33(2), pp. 148-180.

Kutz, C., 2008. Fearful Symmetry. In D. Rodin & H. Shue, eds. 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP. Ch. 4.

Lichtenberg, J., 2008. How to Judge Soldiers Whose Cause in Unjust. In D. Rodin & H. Shue, eds. 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP. Ch. 6.

May, L., 2005. Collective Responsibility, Honor, and the Rules of War. Journal of Social Philosophy,36,pp. 289-304.

McMahan, J., 2006. The Ethics of Killing in War. Ethics,114, pp. 693-733.

McMahan, J., 2008a. Killing in War. Oxford: OUP 2009.

McMahan, J., 2008b. The Morality of War and the Law of War. In D. Rodin & H. Shue, eds. 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP. Ch. 2.

McPherson, L., 2004. Innocence and Responsibility in War. Canadian Journal of Philosophy,34, pp. 485-506.

Rawls, John., 1999. The Law of Peoples. Massachusetts: Harvard University Press.

Reichberg, G., 2008. Just War and Regular War: Competing Paradigms. In D. Rodin & H. Shue, eds. 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP. Ch. 10

Roberts, A., 2008. The Principle of Equal Application of the Laws of War. In D. Rodin & H. Shue, eds. 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP. Ch. 12.

Rodin, D. & Shue, H. eds., 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP.

Rodin, D., 2002. War and Self-Defense. Oxford: Clarendon.

Rodin, D., 2007. The Liability of Ordinary Soldiers for Crimes of Aggression. Global Studies Law Review, 6(3), pp. 591-607

Rodin, R., 2008. The Moral Inequality of Soldiers: Why Jus In Bello Asymmetry is Half Right. In D. Rodin & H. Shue, eds. 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP. Ch. 3.

Ryan, C., 2008. Moral Equality, Victimhood and the Sovereignty Symmetry Problem. In D. Rodin & H. Shue, eds. 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP. Ch. 7

Shue, H., 2008. Do We Need a "Morality of War"? In D. Rodin & H. Shue, eds. 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP. Ch. 5.

Steinhoff, U., 2008. Debate: Jeff McMahan on the Moral Inequality of Combatants. Journal of Political Philosophy, 16(2), pp. 220–226.

Walzer, M., 2006a. Just and Unjust Wars. 4th edn. New York: Basic Books.

Walzer, M., 2006b. Response to Jeff McMahan. Philosophia, 34(1), pp. 43-45.

Wertheimer, R., 2007. Reconnoitering Combatant Moral Equality. Journal of Military Ethics, 6(1), pp. 60-74.

Zupan, D., 2008. A Presumption of the Moral Equality of Combatants: a Citizen Soldier' Perspective. In D. Rodin & H. Shue, eds. 2008. Just and Unjust Warriors: The Moral and Legal Status of Soldiers. Oxford: OUP. Ch. 11.


[1] For the sake of clarity let us say that those who fight in a just war are just combatants, whilst those who fight in a war that is unjust because it lacks a just cause are unjust combatants (McMahan, 2006).

[2] This paper shall keep in accordance with these juxtapositions. Thus, references to symmetry refer to the symmetry and independence theses, whilst references to asymmetry refer to the asymmetry and dependence theses.

-

Written by: James Bieda
Written at: The University of Manchester
Written for: Dr Mark Reiff
Written: May 2010

Army Overseer Tells of Ouster Over KBR Stir By JAMES RISEN

June 17, 2008 | The New York Times

WASHINGTON - The Army official who managed the Pentagon's largest contract in Iraq says he was ousted from his job when he refused to approve paying more than $1 billion in questionable charges to KBR, the Houston-based company that has provided food, housing and other services to American troops....

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/17/washington/17contractor.html?_r=1&hp&oref=slogin

Charley Reese

Epitaph For The War Dead

A long time ago, Ezra Pound wrote an epitaph for the war dead of the 20th century, and now it applies equally well to the war dead of the 21st.

They "walked eye-deep in hell believing in old men's lies, then unbelieving came home, home to a lie, home to many deceits, home to old lies and new infamy, usury age-old and age-thick and liars in public places. ... There died a myriad, and of the best, among them, for an old bitch gone in the teeth, for a botched civilization."

That's what all the young men and now women are dying for - lies and a botched civilization. They are not dying for freedom or to defend their homes and loved ones. They are dying so corporations can make big profits, so evil old men who presume to re-arrange the world to suit their notions can test their theories. They are dying for money, oil and ego, and none of it is worth the life of single boy or girl.

Ernest Hemingway said it best when he said, "War itself is a crime against humanity." The people who deserve to be tried as war criminals are the politicians on both sides who start the wars. To think of the millions of young people, all the joys of life still ahead of them, who have died for scabrous ideologies, political stupidity and the greed of people far from the sound of the guns should turn everyone into an isolationist.

But lies are powerful, and people are easy to manipulate. One of the Nazis said all you have to do is have an enemy at the gate and then suggest that anyone who opposes you is unpatriotic. That is precisely the game plan the Bush administration has employed.

What's actually unpatriotic is to support wars started by crooks and liars for reasons they hide from the public. What's unpatriotic is for old men who won't be within 7,000 miles of the sight of blood to be cheerleaders for the war du jour. What's unpatriotic is for the press to act as a conduit for propaganda rather than independently developing information the people need to know.

It's painful to acknowledge that these young people, so idealistic, were and are being lied to so that they die not for their ideals, but for the sordid schemes of lying politicians, corporations and special-interest groups. No wonder the Bush administration doesn't want photographs of the coffins and tries to blame the press for bad news even though, God knows, the American media rub every story with Clorox and censor the photographs like they were some Puritan in pursuit of sin. No wonder the Bush administration has a murderous hatred for Al-Jazeera, the Arab television station that shows the reality of the war with all its stink, filth and blood.

American society today is a house of lies. People are continuously being lied to for commercial, political and ideological reasons. They are lied to about the environment, the war, foreign policy, the economy, agriculture and public health. You name it, and the Establishment has a set of lies all ready to dupe the public into supporting its selfish aims.

I advise every parent to actively discourage his or her children from joining the military until we have cleaned up the political mess in Washington. Idealistic young men and women should not be sent to do the work of mercenaries.

For the kind of murder Mr. Bush wants to commit, he should form an American version of the French Foreign Legion and pay the market price for mercenaries. There are enough heartless psychopaths in the world to do that kind of work without killing, maiming and scarring the souls of America's best young people.

If you want to support the troops, put pressure on the spineless, lying politicians to bring them home. Don't worry about Iraq going to hell. It's already there.

[Oct 12, 2015] Could The Syrian Conflict Change Global Geopolitics

naked capitalism

Few meetings ever started with dimmer prospects for success than the recent meeting between Presidents Obama and Putin.

The real call for the meeting stemmed from the EU refugee crisis. With a human catastrophe brewing in Europe and the Middle East, EU leaders are urgently demanding that the U.S. and Russia set aside their differences and begin to work together in an effort to resolve the Syrian conflict, the major cause of the massive movement of people seeking sanctuary.

Now, U.S./EU leaders are no longer insisting on the removal of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from office as a pre-condition to negotiations over a new government, although the U.S. continues to insist that al-Assad's removal become part of any final settlement.

But how can such fundamental differences be set aside when the two sides can't even agree on the enemy they're fighting? The U.S. and its allies have defined the Syrian conflict as a civil war against a despotic regime. The Russians define the conflict as an invasion by foreign Islamic radicals, paid and supported by U.S.' Middle Eastern allies.

The EU has made its demands clear: solve the problem, we don't particularly care how, but it has to be done quickly. From that point of view, the U.S. and Russian leaders have little choice but to answer the call.

Russia is attempting to form and lead a UN authorized coalition against ISIL, the radical jihadists' adversaries that conquered large parts of Syria and Iraq, while threatening to engulf the entire region.

Obama has stated publicly that he welcomes help from Russia and Iran in the fight against radical jihadists, ISIL, in Syria, while still insisting that al-Assad must go. On their side, the Russians have made no secret of their strong objections to NATO-led regime change, citing the results of failed states in Iraq, Libya, Tunisia, and Egypt.

In a recent New York Times article, an Administration insider stated that the President believes Syria is a lost cause, one that U.S. military presence could only worsen.

Obama has also shown little reluctance to lead from behind, when supporting NATO partners, particularly with a U.S. public largely opposed to America's military engagement in any further Mideast wars.

But Russia is not NATO, and it's clear that the U.S. has no intention of following the Kremlin's lead in Syria, as its veto of the Russian coalition proposal at the UN Security Council clearly shows. Adding to that was the United States'strong condemnation of the Russian air attack on its first day of operations in Syria.

The urgency of the moment favors cooperation, while geography gives Russia major advantages in leading the fight. Russia's relationship with Iran, already fighting on the ground in Iraq, with its ally Hezbollah fighting in Syria, provides Russia with a readymade army to complement its air attacks.

With the Russians initiating air strikes against ISIL in Syria, the great fear of world leaders is that an accidental collision between opposing U.S. and Russian forces raises the risks of war between the two nuclear powers.

While both sides deny any intent at military collaboration or sharing of military intelligence in Syria, the two Presidents have agreed to meetings of their military leaders, ostensibly aimed at reducing the risk of accidental conflicts between them. How that can be done without shared military intelligence about troop movements, and planned air attacks remains a mystery.

Adding to the confusion is the increasingly cordial meetings between Russian and Saudi leaders.

Many believe that the Saudis, and their Gulf Kingdom partners, hold the key to resolving the conflict, as the major backers of the 'moderate Islamic' rebels fighting the Syrian Government forces.

The Saudis have largely refrained from criticizing the Russian military buildup in Syria, even though it bolsters the Assad regime, and the Kingdom continues to hold its cards close to its vest regarding their position on the new Russian military initiative in Syria.

At the same time, there were conflicting signals in regards to the relationship between Iran and Russia. Reports surfaced in late September that the two countries, along with Syria and Iraq, were coordinating military efforts against the ISIL. But at the UN meeting, Iran's President Rouhani made the surprising statement that Iran saw no need to coordinate military efforts in Syria, with the Russian goal to support its embattled ally in Syria, while Iran's goal is eradicate ISIL.

It's widely recognized that since the Iran nuclear deal, Iran and the U.S. have sought to move closer in other important areas. Still, Rouhani's UN statement seemed to belie the recent agreements between Russia, Iran, Iraq, and Syria to build an information center in Baghdad to share battlefield reconnaissance against ISIL.

That also falls in line with the new agreement with Iran, Iraq, and Syria to provide an air corridor for Russian military flyovers to Syria for Russian fighter planes and transport aircraft.

To observers, these agreements certainly smack of military coordination with Russia. Iran's need to distance itself from Russia seems to be made with an eye on the U.S., where hardline Presidential candidates threaten to tear up the nuclear agreement.

The highly charged political atmosphere in the U.S., in the midst of a Presidential election, only adds to the fog of war in Syria, forcing public denials and secret agreements where there needs to be utmost clarity, making military cooperation in Syria almost impossible, while raising the risks of accidental conflicts between so-called partners.

What then of western sanctions against Russia? In the eyes of the west, the Syrian conflict is beginning to eclipse Ukraine in importance. The U.S. seems satisfied to leave the Ukraine issue to Germany, France, Russia and Ukraine for settlement.

The EU is most likely to be the first mover to ease sanctions, realizing, as a number of EU leaders have stated, that it is fundamentally incompatible to rely on Russia's military might while starving the Russian economy.

In January, the EU sanctions are set to expire, requiring a unanimous vote of all member states for extension. The odds are rising that the EU will allow sanctions to expire.

If so, major global business will once again flock to Russia. That would include the return of major western energy companies that have played a critical part in Russian energy development. Once that starts, it will become far more difficult to reverse the momentum or re-impose sanctions.

Given the political atmosphere in Washington, it's clear the U.S. will leave its sanctions in place.


Sam Kanu, October 7, 2015 at 5:31 am

Given the political atmosphere in Washington, it's clear the U.S. will leave its sanctions in place.

Here you mean "Given the political instructions to Washington from Tel Aviv". I don't see any general feeling in the American people that demands ongoing conflict with Iran. This is not politics at all – just pure old tail wagging the dog.

JeffC -> Sam Kanu, October 7, 2015 at 11:18 am

Sanctions against Russia, not Iran.

Older & Wiser, October 7, 2015 at 6:48 am

The un-named 1800 lb Mr. and Mrs. Gorilla couple in the room are oil & gas.
Pipelines anyone ?

Massinissa, October 7, 2015 at 2:56 pm

Are there really pipelines in Syria? I thought it was through Iraq and Turkey.

ambrit, October 7, 2015 at 7:13 am

Given Russias' long term relationship with Syria, I'm bemused that any Neo of any stripe could with a straight face suggest that the Russians would abandon the Syrian Government to a bunch of Western backed wreckers.

Maintaining a foothold in the Middle East is basic Grand Strategy. America does it with Israel, so Russia does it with Syria.

In the long run, the Middle East is beginning a shake up. The post WW1 borders were incompatible with the ethnic groupings of the region. Now those old 'drawn on a map' borders are being broken apart and the pieces reassembled. This process can take years or decades to work out. The time frame depends on how 'responsible' the Great Powers are in dealing with the realignment process.

Do notice the framing of the issue in the MSM. "Irresponsible Russia" and "Assad Must Go" are everywhere proclaimed. Like the magicians they are, the MSMs rely on misdirection to try to pull off the 'trick.' While the West tries to browbeat the Russians, the Russians are persistently acting in their, and in the Syrian Governments, perceived best interests.

On the air front, the Russian "incursions" look to be standard battlefield intelligence work. Send a plane or two 'over the border' and see what sorts of anti air radars 'lock on' to your aircraft. This is something any competent air commander would want to discover. This is also a thinly veiled threat to the West; "Look! Anyone can play this game!" The basic point being; there is no such thing as a 'no fly zone,' if you are willing to fight.

The Russian message is basic; "Put up, or shut up."

NotTimothyGeithner, October 7, 2015 at 9:05 am

The post WWI borders are fairly similar to Ottoman administrative districts. The Kuwait city-state answered to the governor of Baghdad within their framework. The issue has been foreign powers using sectarian ties to divide the little people from cooperation which was achievable under the Sultan for 500 years. Even Hussein found the Shiites to be exceptionally loyal during the Iran-Iraq War.

The rise of the Saudis, allowing the Israelis to knock over Lebanon and run an apartheid state, and supporting oppressive regimes which would have fallen or reformed (pretty much all the Gulf states which also have ancient borders) are major issues. There have always been states centered around the modern cities (Ur and Babylon were replaced by Baghdad) or provinces. I believe the creative borders argument was always a "White Man's Burden" excuse to justify control. "Professor Scott, why do they fight in the Middle East?" Excuses about unfortunate cartography sound better than "I needed to build a railroad and did the want to pay the locals, so I cooked up a rape story in one village, handed out guns, and slaughtered the adult males in the other village."

On the other hand, Africa was carved up bizarrely based on rail and ship movements.

todde, October 7, 2015 at 8:11 am

KSA claims Assad must go and I doubt they will support Russia.

Who is supporting IS? I find it hard to believe they can maintain armed conflict on several fronts without a state backer.

Where are the 10s of billions of dollars in turkeys central bank in accounts called unknown foreign sources and errors and adjustments?

Iran will support Assad regardless of American actions.

blert, October 7, 2015 at 5:54 pm

Two factors.

Iran was using Turkey as a front, Ankara collected its 'cut.' Turkey was laundering monies from the Gulf, too, probably Golden Chain funding for the fanatics in Syria. Erdogan has more side action than Rick's Cafe American.

Eureka Springs, October 7, 2015 at 9:02 am

Madness R U.S. US, Saudi, Turks and Israeli's must be held at bay at the very least. It's (Russia, Iran, Syria) who are the only entities resembling a possible humanitarian, rule of law base of action now or possibly working towards that kind of end game.

That's how low we are, R or D, … the creators and perpetrators of al Q and all of their newly named lackeys doing our dirty work continuously since the 1980's. It's not impossible to know who we are and what we have long done… Reading Obama's words and Putin's it is clear Putin is being far more honest and consistent in both action and words.

Maybe we should stop blowing up hospitals and imprison leaders who order or even allow it to happen. Nah, there are too many unarmed citizens in wheelchairs who must be shot.

blert, October 7, 2015 at 6:02 pm

Bin Laden has gone on record - time and time, again - denouncing your thesis. He never needed American funding - ever. He would never, ever, grovel to the kafir.

It's only recently that 0bama started funding AQ's front organs, al Nusrah inparticular. BOTH ISIS and al Nusrah are joined at the hip and are al Qaeda fronts. They only had a falling out, circa 2011.

The FSA is a total fiction. It's a Western media construct. Syria is a fight between brutal Assad and two feral al Qaeda fronts… that can't be controlled. The UK, US and Jordan trained most of ISIS' cadres in the Jordanian desert back in 2011-12. They then went rogue. That (mostly Jordanian) force is still the dominant core of ISIS. Our crass media is complicit in covering up a reality that the rest of the planet is hip to.

Eureka Springs , October 7, 2015 at 8:07 pm

Agree with you after your first three lines. I guess those shoulder fired missiles which al Q used to take out Russian helicopters in Afghanistan during the '80's were Costa Rican made and supplied.

Massinissa, October 7, 2015 at 8:29 pm

So Bin Laden was actually giving money and guns to Zbigniew Brzezinski instead of the other way around?

You have seen that famous photo of Bin Laden and Zbigniew Brzezinski right? Just google it.

Stephen V, October 7, 2015 at 10:44 am

Never expected to hear this re: Iran– https://www.rt.com/shows/watching-the-hawks/317844-oily-mess-tax-us/

A retired Army Colonel who served under Colin Powell actually says he's afraid of a future Israeli false-flag operation that will start a US war with Iran
– move the cursor to 15 mins...

Steven, October 7, 2015 at 11:10 am

Somewhere I remember reading an analysis of the Syrian conflict along the following lines:

  1. It does indeed involve geopolitics – with the aim being to replace Europe's dependence on Russian oil and gas with that from U.S. Middle-eastern 'allies'. To do that it is necessary to build a pipeline across Syria – and insure the Syrian government is firmly in the pocket of the U.S. and its allies.
  2. Without wishing to denigrate the influence of AIPAC, this conflict has far more to do with preserving and possibly extending US global hegemony (with a continuing full-employment program for the country's Congressional military-industrial complex) than it does Israel's inordinate control over US foreign policy. All the blather about democracy vs. dictatorship and/or Sunni vs. Shia vs. Sunni is just offal fed to the cannon fodder used by powers great and small to get it to sacrifice itself for their ambitions.
  3. Like ambrit said, this is just "basic Grand Strategy". It is way past time for US 'leaders' to recognize the full spectrum dominance they enjoyed in the aftermath of WWII was (charitably) an accident of history and come to terms with a multi-polar world and the concept of collective security to which they gave so much word of mouth to a population disgusted with the carnage and destruction of the second "war to end all wars".

Hespeler1, October 7, 2015 at 4:19 pm

Steven, Pepe Escobar has written extensively about the "pipeline wars" ("pipelinestan"), the Empire is trying to starve Russia's finances in part by bypassing Russia's pipelines. Greece was pressured into refusing to be the Turkish Stream's terminus and distribution hub for Southern Europe. We all know how much they needed the revenue from that, but TPTB said no. Grand Strategy=break up Russia, steal her resources, put pressure on China. I fear that the Empire won't stop until they accomplish this, or are buried.

OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL, October 7, 2015 at 12:11 pm

Sometimes things are just so obvious. US "veto of the Russian coalition proposal at the UN Security Council". Could be because the US wants to lead a bigger, better coalition, maybe ours will include Samoa or something. Or, um, duh, could be because US doesn't really want to fight ISIS since that's our dog in this fight. Funny how a few days bombing by Russia has had a real impact on actual ISIS fighters…whereas US bombing tends to be on stuff like bridges and power plants and hospitals that hurt Assad more than they hurt ISIS.

I mean how bleeding obvious when we get John McCain high fiving ISIS…and our grand plan was to find "moderate" maniacs that would do our bidding. "OK everybody, form a line, if you're an extremist take the T-shirt on the left, if you're a moderate take a T-shirt on the right". That strategy has worked out so well for us in the past, we spent $500M and trained precisely "4 or 5" guys.

Yankee go home.

sid_finster, October 7, 2015 at 12:32 pm

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-10-07/russian-warships-launch-missile-attack-syrian-targets-clearing-way-iran-ground-invas

Is it not most edifying that Iraq is now apparently allowing Russian cruise missiles to fly over its territory, or at least not objecting? (Not that Iraq could do much about it…)

Harry, October 7, 2015 at 5:20 pm

Iraq is part of the Russian coalition as well as China and you probably do know that Iraqi prime-minister already made a statement that he would not object against Russians decimating ISIS on the Iraqi territory. And look, oil prices are already going up – that's what Putin really needed and this is one of the eight reasons why he started a war in the Middle East.

NotTimothyGeithner, October 7, 2015 at 8:52 pm

Started a war? You do realize training a day arming rebels is an act of war even if Congress hides the funding in the classified budget or if it's done by the CIA instead of corporate approved soldiers. The U.S. government has started numerous wars without Congressional approval, mostly because Congress is still afraid of elections. Russia is allied with Syria. If anything Putin has shown remarkable constraint.

Synoia, October 7, 2015 at 1:06 pm

There are three sides to Syria:

1. New Caliphate – Includes Turkey & Saudi Arabia – Look at a map and think contiguous empire -ISIS is their tool.

2. US dislike of Assad, and allied with Turkey and Saudi Arabia, but dislikes New Caliphate and ISIS.

3. Russia, Iran, Syria, Hezbollah etc, dislike New Calipahe, becue of potential threat to Russia from Muslim arc from Iran through to China (the Stans).

Which leaves the US's allies in direct opposition to the US' goals, and leads to lies, deceit and deception from parties (1) and (2).

The role of ISIS is to destabilize Syria and Iran, to create an opportunity for Turkish Troops (500,000 man army), and Saudi money to enter, the region "to keep the peace," thus furthering their imperial ambitions.

The US is trying to eliminate Assad, but not enable a new Caliphate, and undermine Russia's and Iran's influence in the area, because Oil and exceptionalism (for exceptionalism see collective ego, or stunning arragance).

Russia and Iran see the solution to a New Caliphate as Assad in power, and a weakening of US influence.

aka: Quagmire

NotTimothyGeithner -> Synoia, October 7, 2015 at 8:56 pm

The U.S. government's side* is childish at best. The only real plan was Sunni elements of the army would assume power when Assad was removed from power with a little Saber rattling much like Libya with the GNC. Obama's ego prevents him from recognizing what a stupid idea this was and how radically different types Assad a day Gaddafi's power bases were.

*They are hiding behind the war powers act and approval from post 9/11 legislation. Congress an otherwise President are too cowardly to call our actions acts of war which is what they are.

washunate, October 7, 2015 at 1:40 pm

No.

But seriously, it is interesting seeing what the Oilprice guys think their audience wants to hear. They are clearly inside the MSM echo chamber. You have everything from dichotomous balance (because truth has two sides) to the charged political atmosphere (which sadly forces otherwise honest and transparent leaders to engage in secrecy and deception against their will).

I particularly love how casual the author is with the notion that the President of the United States has an explicit policy goal of deposing the leader of a sovereign nation. Ho hum, just another head of state that must go.

susan the other, October 7, 2015 at 2:15 pm

This summary by Berke also reflects my puzzled observations. It wasn't that long ago that we worried about a fundamentalist insurrection in SA and so we politely made ourselves scarce to help the Saudis out.

There's probably now a pre-arranged trade off for the Saudis and Iran: SA gets to take over Yemen; Iran gets to create a corridor through Syria. Who knows. I thought the meeting at the UN between Obama and Putin was such thinly disguised cooperation that surely some MSM would comment – but none did.

And the EU has stated (above) that sanctions against Russia are incompatible because the EU is "relying on Russia's military might" and shouldn't therefore starve the Russian economy. Wow, let's hear the story on that please.

So did Holland send in the French bombers to help out Russia? Maybe SA and RU are chummy because Russia is going to get the contract to build the new pipeline from the Gulf to Europe.

blert, October 7, 2015 at 6:08 pm

Actually all of the load growth, for OPEC, is towards India and points east. American fracking has released a glut of oil into the Atlantic Ocean market space.
Nigeria essentially lost North America as a customer - all together. If Libya and Venezuela get their act together, the glut becomes even more pronounced. Then toss in Brazil's new out put.

Brian M, October 7, 2015 at 8:10 pm

many of the fracked wells will fail amazingly quickly. So, this may not be true for long...

skippy, October 7, 2015 at 8:14 pm

A giddy operator with the rights to a gas-rich parcel of land can't just drill willy-nilly. Well design considerations are very complex and attention to detail must span the construction, testing phase, and decommissioning of the well post-production. Moreover, drilling wells are often constructed uniquely with regard to the geology and geography of the specific location. For instance, because much of the shale formation in Pennsylvania lies beneath a shallower gas formation, it is easier for the shallower gas to escape during the initial drilling process. This in turn has made it difficult for drillers to design failproof wells that can be sealed off from the younger deposits completely.

http://frackwire.com/well-casing-failure/

Jim, October 7, 2015 at 2:26 pm

At this point in the Syrian crisis it appears that the national security network (several hundred high-level military, intelligence, diplomatic and law enforcement agencies) are still debating among themselves what the U.S. response will be to Russian military initiatives in Syria and potentially Iraq.

For all Bernie Sanders supporters, it will be interesting to see what his stance on Syria will be. Will he break( at least rhetorically) with these national security elites( who since WWII have basically dictated Presidential moves in the national security arena) or will he cave to this present structure of networked power despite his "democratic socialist" credentials.

Will Sanders maintain this continuity of American foreign policy that so shocked Obama supporters?

Will the United State continue on its path of greater centralization, less accountability and emergent autocracy despite whoever wins the increasingly powerless Presidencyj?

RUKidding, October 7, 2015 at 2:33 pm

Here's my bet for the answer to your last 2 Q:

1. Yes
2. Yes

James Levy, October 7, 2015 at 3:00 pm

Unfortunately, I concur.

The amazing thing is watching the utter horror and confusion of the MSM and the Talking Heads as the Russians do things (bombing ISIS! Firing cruise missiles!!!) that the US does just about every other Tuesday, as if these things are some kind of massive breach of the peace on the order of Hitler invading Poland. The lack of any self-awareness is stunning.

Oregoncharles, October 7, 2015 at 2:55 pm

"Russia is attempting to form and lead a UN authorized coalition against ISIL"

The obvious solution, especially if it does not include the US. I'm anti-interventionist in general, but ISIL poses us the problem the Nazis did: this cannot be allowed to stand. They're actually taking us back to the 7th Century, morally, and for that matter doing things Mohammed probably wouldn't have stood for. Except in degree, most of their actions are not unprecedented, even in modern times; what's unprecedented is their extreme openness about it. Hypocrisy is an acknowledgment of morality; these people are trying to CHANGE morality, reversing hundreds of years of hard-won progress. They're a kind of monster we thought we were rid of. And they've been successful enough militarily, at least in that deeply destabilized region, to present a real threat.

Ultimately, they will have to be suppressed; it won't be easy or bloodless. The Russians' proposal may be self-interested, but it's the only approach likely to work. American bombing certainly won't.

ISIL's PR skills bother me on another level: they're extremely convenient for the interventionists. They've even got me going. And there are real connections between it and the US authorities, especially in Iraq, to say nothing of the Saudis. I can't help but wonder whether it's a CIA operation, either run amok or conceivably still under control. (If you aren't paranoid, you aren't paying attention.)

Steven, October 7, 2015 at 4:17 pm

I keep wondering how much of what goes on here in the commentariat of Naked Capitalism is just preaching to the choir and how much represents (well deserved) contempt for the official government / MSM (but I repeat myself) line among the population at large. That contempt – if it exists – is in my humble opinion – a national security issue / crisis.

JTMcPhee, October 7, 2015 at 7:46 pm

Quoting the captain of the Titanic, "More steam! Full speed ahead! We gotta show the world what this baby will do!"

[Oct 07, 2015] US Ruling Circles Split On Use of Jihadists in Syria

"... Well, the United States and its allies are speaking gobbledygook, and Russia is speaking straight up plain international law truth. Theyve come to the aid of the recognized government of Syria, which is being attacked by proxies of other countries, the U.S., the Saudis, other Gulf states, and Turkey, in violation of international law. ..."
"... They are defending principles of international law. And the U.S. and its allies are violating international law, and the U.S. and its allies cannot draw some kind of red line around ISIS, the wayward jihadists that dont want to take orders, and expect the Russians to only discipline their little bad boys and leave the other jihadists alone. That only makes sense to idiots like the New York Times and CNN and the rest. ..."
"... in a way the Russian military intervention against the jihadists in Syria has given the Obama administration another chance to back off of that decades-long policy of using Islamic jihadists as footsoldiers for imperialism in the Muslim world. ..."
"... there was a growing split in the U.S. government in ruling circles, in the intelligence agencies, even three years ago. And there was a fear that the jihadists would have, were developing their own kind of agenda. And theres nothing that U.S. imperialists dislike more than people who have their own agenda. And we know now that in August of 2012, we know this because of a memo that came to light this year, that analysts for the Defense and Intelligence Agency were warning that the jihadists, the people who would become the Islamic State, were likely to declare their own caliphate. And that would mean that they would have their own policies and they would fight their own war, not the war that the United States wanted them to fight. ..."
"... And although that warning didnt cause the U.S. to reverse its long policy of supporting jihadists, it did I think make Obama much more cautious, and I think thats why he backed off from bombing Syria that same year. The same Defense Intelligence Agency analysts are now screaming that the top Pentagon brass are lying about the kinds of reports that theyve been given, reports about the growing strength of ISIS. And that argument in itself is signs of a real split in the intelligence agencies, a split in the U.S. military, a split in the Obama administration itself. A split that was evident when Hillary Clinton was secretary of state. ..."
Oct 07, 2015 | therealnews.com
BALL: So what is going on here? It almost sounds like a neo-Cold War indirect conflict of superpowers vying for colonial control over their property, or a fight over whose anti-Assad allies should be supported. What is going on?

FORD: Well, the United States and its allies are speaking gobbledygook, and Russia is speaking straight up plain international law truth. They've come to the aid of the recognized government of Syria, which is being attacked by proxies of other countries, the U.S., the Saudis, other Gulf states, and Turkey, in violation of international law. And the Russians say that they are not just defending the government that they have had relations with for decades. They are defending principles of international law. And the U.S. and its allies are violating international law, and the U.S. and its allies cannot draw some kind of red line around ISIS, the wayward jihadists that don't want to take orders, and expect the Russians to only discipline their little bad boys and leave the other jihadists alone. That only makes sense to idiots like the New York Times and CNN and the rest.

BALL: But again, for those of us who have varying understandings of what's happening here, it would seem like the U.S. would not have a problem with Assad's territory being bombed, given that the U.S. and Obama's administration in particular is no fan of Bashar al-Assad and his leadership there in Syria. Why then are they having a problem with what Russia's doing, and to what extent are the problems that are claimed to be addressed there actually caused in their origin by the United States and its policies?

FORD: Well, the United States has, and Obama knows the United States has, problems that go beyond the Russian intervention. They have problems with their own policy, which has brought them to this state of affairs. And in a way the Russian military intervention against the jihadists in Syria has given the Obama administration another chance to back off of that decades-long policy of using Islamic jihadists as footsoldiers for imperialism in the Muslim world.

And the reason that I say another chance is because it was the Russians back in 2012 who gave President Obama a similar opportunity to re-think that jihadist 35-year-old policy when they proposed that the international community supervise the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons. That was back in 2012. And that allowed President Obama to back off from his threat to attack Syria, to bomb the Syrian government. I think that President Obama backed off on that threat not because of domestic or international opposition. The United States acts unilaterally all the time, I think he could have gotten away with it. I think that Obama was genuinely afraid of what would happen if the Syrian government collapsed. And make no mistake about it, if the United States had attacked the Syrian government directly the dynamic of the situation would have compelled the United States to keep on attacking until that government was totally destroyed, just like they did to Col. Gaddafi's government in Libya only one year before.

But it is very clear, now quite clear in hindsight but I think it was visible back then, that there was a growing split in the U.S. government in ruling circles, in the intelligence agencies, even three years ago. And there was a fear that the jihadists would have, were developing their own kind of agenda. And there's nothing that U.S. imperialists dislike more than people who have their own agenda. And we know now that in August of 2012, we know this because of a memo that came to light this year, that analysts for the Defense and Intelligence Agency were warning that the jihadists, the people who would become the Islamic State, were likely to declare their own caliphate. And that would mean that they would have their own policies and they would fight their own war, not the war that the United States wanted them to fight.

And although that warning didn't cause the U.S. to reverse its long policy of supporting jihadists, it did I think make Obama much more cautious, and I think that's why he backed off from bombing Syria that same year. The same Defense Intelligence Agency analysts are now screaming that the top Pentagon brass are lying about the kinds of reports that they've been given, reports about the growing strength of ISIS. And that argument in itself is signs of a real split in the intelligence agencies, a split in the U.S. military, a split in the Obama administration itself. A split that was evident when Hillary Clinton was secretary of state.

So the Russian intervention is now forcing Obama's hand. He's going to have to decide if he's going to continue this policy with the jihadists, or if he's going to go for some kind of containment or stabilization of the battle lines in Syria. We know it's quite obvious that Turkey and Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states wanted an all-out offensive to take out the Assad government once and for all, but that has been checked definitively by the Russians. And that gives Obama another chance to cooperate with the people in the region, with Syria and with Iran, and with the government of Iraq, as well as with the Russians. He has that chance again, if he takes it.

[Oct 04, 2015] Wake-up call on Syrian army weakness prompted Russian intervention

Notable quotes:
"... If the USA has not intervened covertly, Russia would not have intervened overtly. ..."
"... The basic rational always seems to be that US targets, including the bombing targets and civilian deaths, are legitimate, while Russia involvement is nefarious a priori. Russian reporting is usually termed ' Russian propaganda', while US reporting, which is as unified and unanimous in its judgement, just reversed, is seen as telling the truth. ..."
"... "......British soldiers have been caught posing as Arabs and shooting Iraqis in the occupied city of Basra in southern Iraq. A group of them was caught yesterday by Iraqi police. They were driving an Iraqi car, wearing Arab clothing, and carrying weapons and explosives........police and civilians have been targeted and killed by "terrorists" or "insurgents. .........But this is the first time that any of those responsible have been caught in the act, and it is now clear that at least some of them are working directly for the occupying forces ..."
"... USA is wining by sophisticate wide 'divide and rule' policy; so it remains very strong at influencing, manipulating and weakening its competitors. ..."
"... It was America and its proxies which turned Syria from a relatively secular, functioning State into the mess we have there today by supporting those opposed to the government. ..."
"... It's hard not to conclude that the US would rather have countries unstable and in ruins that under control of a leader that isn't one of their puppets. ..."
"... The petulant warmongers in USA and NATO are now coordinating a major disinformation campaign. According to the President of the Russian Federation the lies about civilian deaths were even reported BEFORE the Russian airstrikes were launched. ..."
"... Step down and - then what? What the hell's wrong with you people? How about the Russians are simply sickened to fuck by the spectacle of the psychos you propagandize for playing their little games? Dirty, dirty, weasly words. ..."
"... whether its goal is to strike at Islamic State or, more likely, to take on any rebel force fighting Bashar al-Assad in order to prevent the final and complete descent of Syria into the pit of total bloody anarchy and slavery at the hands of a myriad lunatic death cults. ..."
"... the root cause of terrorism is the original arming of ISIS by your US bosses (to fight Assad) and of AlQaida and the Taliban ( to fight the Russians), in addition to the prolific funds provided by the gulf monarchist dictatorships allied to the USA. ..."
"... The US coalition is limited to preventing the Caliphate from spreading into forbidden territory but leaving it free to act in Syria. The columns of trucks and pick-up of Daesh which took Palmyra on May 21st circulated uncovered in the desert without being worried by the US Air Force. ..."
"... The US strategy, the long term strategic vision, was to bring down Assad under the blows of ISIS. And when the thugs will be in Damascus and attack the Russians in Tartus, the americans will support them until the Russians will withdraw, finally the US will bomb and destroy in half a day all the Califat's army which they contributed to create (the good guys). ..."
Oct 01, 2015 | The Guardian


Normin 2 Oct 2015 13:16

Russia had to step in and bring attention to the proxy groups operating in Syria under US support. After years of lies the divide and conquer, regime change to puppet government plan has been exposed.

The US support of these groups against Assad coincides with Israeli security concerns which deem a destabilized Middle East a boost to Israel's security. This unprecedented foreign state influence starts in Washington with Congress, various advisers, think tanks, lobby groups, and full media support.

It's interesting to see how Russia acts to pursue state interests without being hobbled by the concerns and questionable influence of another country that does not have similar foreign policy interests as the USA. Time for a change in US policy, it's long overdue.

mgeary 2 Oct 2015 12:56

Sadly, as always in war the truth is amongst the first victims.

This conflict is another product of the old "divide and conquer" tactic, adapted to the current reality. When you do not like a nation`s leadership, you find a group of dissidents, train them, arm them and let them loose.

The civilians, women and children killed, the lives ruined and the homes lost are just collateral damage.

The situation in Syria is by the making of the powers involved, so complicated, with so many factions involved, that we should be very careful when we pass judgement.
Several of the people commenting here and some reporters have already done so with bias, according to their interests.

Thomas Hood -> eelolondon 2 Oct 2015 12:44

If the USA has not intervened covertly, Russia would not have intervened overtly.

Glauber Brito 2 Oct 2015 11:25

It is difficult to criticize Russian involvement in the Syria, when considering that it has been the US invasion and occupation in Iraq, which incidentally claimed well over 100,000 civilian lives, that sent the entire Middle East into turmoil.

The basic rational always seems to be that US targets, including the bombing targets and civilian deaths, are legitimate, while Russia involvement is nefarious a priori. Russian reporting is usually termed ' Russian propaganda', while US reporting, which is as unified and unanimous in its judgement, just reversed, is seen as telling the truth.

Which is exactly what the Russians are telling their viewers and listeners. It would be utterly refreshing, if the media would start demonstrating the same critical bias towards the government and the use of language, as they do of the Russians.


Madranon LaterNow 2 Oct 2015 09:16

I suspect that this is all about the House of Saud's internal war manifesting in proxy wars destabilising the region in some sick power struggle between the royal families.
Besides, the only real victims in this are the non Sunnis, the groups that Saudi Arabia has long persecuted within its own borders for decades. The aim, i believe is a totally Sunni middle east with all other sects and religions driven out or exterminated. With the help of western weapons, Britain likes to make a few bob out of any civil war and regional horror.

WhetherbyPond -> diddoit 2 Oct 2015 03:13

"the term Ziocons is offensive."

I meant to give offence. Being violently nationalistic, expansionist, racist and corrupt is offensive. If the apartheid state of Israel was any other country the west would be up in arms and calling for sanctions and regime change; however, because of the vile actions of the Nazi's and others, and the fact that the west did very little to help the poor souls who were being persecuted and murdered, the Ziocons use the guilt that is rightly felt in the west as a shield to cover their actions and silence their critics.


SHappens 123dcp 2 Oct 2015 02:16

US journalist Nir Rosen wrote in 2012, "every day the opposition gives a death toll, usually without explanation ... Many of those reported killed are in fact dead opposition fighters ... but described in reports as innocent civilians killed by the security forces ."
http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/08/21/the-douma-market-attack-a-fabricated-pretext-for-intervention/

The figures about casualties comes from The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (OSDH) is an agency close to the rebels financed by Arab monarchies and Western states and headquartered in London. It publishes its toll of months of war Syria. These macabre figures reveal surprising dishonesty of traditional media and contradict the pro-interventionist propaganda. Note that Reuters was not allowed to check their figures.

The OSDH announced that there would have been 220,271 deaths.

Nearly half of the victims of war are soldiers and loyalist militiamen.

The number of "Bashar soldiers" killed is higher than the number of civilians killed. On the other hand, the Syrian Arab army is essentially composed of conscripts, that is to say citizens who defend their country, their institutions and their government, we can say that the army is inseparable from the Syrian people.

Therefore, it is also dishonest to hold Assad responsible for the deaths of more than 220,000 Syrians as do the media and provocative militants since the first victim of the war in Syria is the army, so the people in uniform, so the "people pro-Assad".

Let us turn now to the number of civilian casualties. The OSDH counted 104,629 killed.

This figure does not distinguish the Syrians that could be broadly described as "pro-government" or "pro-rebellion".

The number of civilians, including women and children, which can be in the pro-Assad camp of anti-rebel or neutral is probably extremely high especially if one takes into account the mass killings which occurred by terrorist groups in the Kurdish areas of the north of the country, in neighborhoods and Shiite villages and Christian and among the Sunni patriots all over the country.

The anti-government armed groups have also claimed hundreds of executions of civilians including children, suspected of sympathy with the Syrian regime.

As for victims of the armed opposition, the OSDH recorded 37,336 killed, twice less than killed Syrian soldiers (90,000) and one fifth of the total number of victims of war (220,271).

These armed groups are themselves engaged in wars that cause the death of many pro-rebel fighters and their families. Thus among the 104,629 civilian victims of the Syrian confit, it should take into account hundreds of rebels killed by pro-rebel civilians.

On reading the tragic toll of the OSDH, the Syrian situation shows that this is not Bashar, but the rebellion that is killing the Syrian people. Therefore, the Syrian state is right to fight against terrorism to restore peace in the country like any other state in the world

Which leads us to defend the non-interference and peace in Syria, with Assad.
http://www.syriahr.com/en/2015/04/310000-people-killed-since-the-beginning-of-the-syrian-revolution/


GERALD710 -> eelolondon
2 Oct 2015 00:47

I agree and disagree.
The protests began in Daraa. Where the protesters did an idiotic thing. The region was suffering from a severe drought. Now instead of protesting for relief aid, they were protesting for the downfall of the regime?????

There was nothing at all peaceful in the protests of Hama and Homs in 2011 where protestors deliberately murdered policemen and women and the Muslim Botherhood was busy already chanting 'Alawites in Coffins and Christians to Beirut'. A very dangerous chant in the two cities where minorities made up more than a third of the population.

I am sorry, if a bunch of Islammist nutjobs start talking of putting my people in coffins and deporting my allies to Beirut, I would have leveled them to the Ground. Have you seen the Old City of Homs? That would have been anyone's reaction.

Sparingpartner 1 Oct 2015 20:45

If you can't own the economy, fuck the place up! Great policy in the so called propagation of democratic freedoms... and while you are at it, explain to me once gain why Australia needs to not only be involved in this inglorious cluster-fuck but want to urge the Americans to step it up - like they're not doing enough?

Sweet Jesus in heaven save me from the do-gooders in this world!

buildabridge -> Clark8934 1 Oct 2015 20:34

Or a deliberate cunning foreign policy to divide and create chaos?

Back in 2005 Bashra under occupation by British forces:

"......British soldiers have been caught posing as Arabs and shooting Iraqis in the occupied city of Basra in southern Iraq. A group of them was caught yesterday by Iraqi police. They were driving an Iraqi car, wearing Arab clothing, and carrying weapons and explosives........police and civilians have been targeted and killed by "terrorists" or "insurgents. .........But this is the first time that any of those responsible have been caught in the act, and it is now clear that at least some of them are working directly for the occupying forces"

http://www.theinsider.org/news/article.asp?id=1556

buildabridge -> ComradeFunk 1 Oct 2015 20:15

Not so sure. USA is still the strongest military power with the furthest reach by miles. It has the smartest and best funded Foreign Offices and Spy Networks, human and electronic. This chaos in the Middle East, any slowly further North, is US foreign policy firing on all cylinders, to create chaos in Eurasia to prevent Eurasia from settling down and trading peacefully with each other, and so USA becoming sidelined. USA is succeeding and winning with minimal loss, far away from Eurasia. USA remains strong and Eurasia becomes weaker fighting with itself, just like WW1 and WW2.

USA is wining by sophisticate wide 'divide and rule' policy; so it remains very strong at influencing, manipulating and weakening its competitors.

mandzorp -> eelolondon 1 Oct 2015 18:06

Russia are bombing in support of the government of Syria. It was America and its proxies which turned Syria from a relatively secular, functioning State into the mess we have there today by supporting those opposed to the government.

cherryredguitar -> tubes99 1 Oct 2015 17:47

Just making the point that the US/UK are on the same side as Islamic nutters who eat dead people's internal organs.

TheChillZone -> LoveisEternal 1 Oct 2015 17:26

Yeah, whereas the West's nation building in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya etc has gone soon well. Russia can't do any worse than us....and at least hey are doing something to fight isis and the legions of terrorsst groups that are lining up to take control of Syria. It's hard not to conclude that the US would rather have countries unstable and in ruins that under control of a leader that isn't one of their puppets.

KriticalThinkingUK 1 Oct 2015 15:07

As a matter of fact the Russian intervention at Syria's invitation was necessary because of the failure of the US to halt ISIS. Yes, the same ISIS that the USA originally armed ( to fight Assad). Syrian Government forces currently control territory that holds 80% of the Syrian population and you can be sure that ISIS are now doomed by the coalition of Syria, Russia, Iran, Iraq and others, with or without the support of the outmaneuvered (again) USA.

The petulant warmongers in USA and NATO are now coordinating a major disinformation campaign. According to the President of the Russian Federation the lies about civilian deaths were even reported BEFORE the Russian airstrikes were launched.

Politicians across Europe are welcoming Russia's intervention as the only long term solution to the refugee crisis and literally hundreds of millions of Europeans are supporting Russia's attack on ISIS, whatever lies you may read from the old cold warriors and their oligarch's press in the US and UK.


retsdon 1 Oct 2015 17:20

whether its goal is to strike at Islamic State or, more likely, to take on any rebel force fighting Bashar al-Assad in order to shore up his position and stave off demands that he step down.

Step down and - then what? What the hell's wrong with you people? How about the Russians are simply sickened to fuck by the spectacle of the psychos you propagandize for playing their little games? Dirty, dirty, weasly words.

Here, try the truth.

whether its goal is to strike at Islamic State or, more likely, to take on any rebel force fighting Bashar al-Assad in order to prevent the final and complete descent of Syria into the pit of total bloody anarchy and slavery at the hands of a myriad lunatic death cults.

You just can't bring yourselves to admit that your neo-liberal masters have cocked their little adventure up completely this time, can you? Eh?


Realworldview 1 Oct 2015 17:04

Wake-up call on Syrian army weakness prompted Russian intervention

Very true, the collapse of the Syrian army was looking increasingly likely. This interesting article on the Saker website adds further clarity, by discussing what will not happen, what will happen, what has already happened, and what might happen. Finally some clarity about the Russian plans about Syria that ends with this paragraph, which raises the prospect of some "interesting times" in Syria and the wider Middle East:

Of course, I am under no illusions about any real change of heart in the imperial "deep state". What we see now is just a tactical adaptation to a situation which the US could not control, not a deep strategic shift. The rabid Russophobes in the West are still out there (albeit some have left in disgust ) and they will now have the chance to blame Russia for anything and everything in Syria, especially if something goes really wrong. Yes, Putin has just won another major victory against the Empire (where are those who claimed that Russia had "sold out" Syria?!), but now Russia will have to manage this potentially "dangerous victory".

If nothing else, it explains the wall to wall media propaganda blitz that started with the first Russian air strikes.

KriticalThinkingUK -> psygone 1 Oct 2015 16:45

Wake up psygoon...

the root cause of terrorism is the original arming of ISIS by your US bosses (to fight Assad) and of AlQaida and the Taliban ( to fight the Russians), in addition to the prolific funds provided by the gulf monarchist dictatorships allied to the USA. Its a fact whether you like it or not...the US propaganda offensive to try and cover up their stupidity will go nowhere. The truth will out and the terrorists will be destroyed by the coalition of Syria, Russia, Iran and Iraq etc, with or without the support of the USA. The Russian intervention against ISIS has massive support in Europe, who can take no more refugees. Europe, the whole of the middle east, Russia and above all the Syrian people (especially the Kurd and Christian minority communities) all need a stable government in Syria, not another failed state like Libya and Iraq.


Abiesalba -> Jack Seaton 1 Oct 2015 16:02

As for ISIS being a threat to Russia, does anyone seriously believe that ISIS are going to get anywhere near those maps you linked to?

Yes. The media in the European countries which are on the ISIS map reported about this map with concern already when it was published a year ago. (One of the links to ISIS maps in my previous post goes to Slovenia's national broadcaster, the other to an Austrian newspaper - both Slovenia and Austria are on the ISIS map).

Because unlike you, we understand that ISIS does not have to physically occupy all these countries. Its strategy is to first have groups pledging allegiance to ISIS in these countries. And in this respect, ISIS is VERY successful and has in only one year spread its influence into rather many countries. Besides, it has also claimed incredibly much territory in Syria and Iraq, while the US-led coalition (comprising very mighty armies) claim they are fighting against them!

And ISIS is already in the Russian Federation!!!! See for example:
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8 ISIS supporters killed in N. Caucasus special op

(2 August 2015)

Russian security forces have foiled a terrorist group that recently pledged allegiance to ISIS in Ingushetia, in the Northern Caucasus, according to the National Anti-Terror Committee (NAC). Security forces seized explosives, weapons and over 2,000 rounds of ammunition.
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How Russian Militants Declared A New ISIS 'State' In Russia's North Caucasus

(26 June 2015)

The Islamic State group announced the creation of its northernmost province this week, after accepting a formal pledge of allegiance from former al Qaeda militants in the North Caucasus region of Russia.

Clark8934 1 Oct 2015 16:01

The west is physiologically defunct. Fact. Their fragile idealistic bits-and-pieces approach to having a belief system, full of irrational claptrap is being so painfully allowing the Syrian conflict to run and run.

However terrifying the reality becomes the west withdraws into a sort of elitist denial and always seem to have international law on their side however many times they break it!

It seems a long time ago now that anyone in the West thought and articulated with such clarity, realism, and sense as the Russians. The political correct bigots in the West created this situation , one where no-one dare talk sense for fear of ridicule. Long live Putin.


AgeingAlbion 1 Oct 2015 15:30

Putin at least has been consistent throughout. He has backed Assad from day one.

The west first thought it was going to be another wonderful Arab Spring, then thought they could manage to back the "right" rebels as opposed to Isis, then said chemical weapons were a "red line" them failed to do anything when the red line was crossed then said Assad must go before negotiations and now meekly accept he might have to be part of the solution.

How much has that dithering achieved and how many lives has it cost? If Russia moves in directly and uses the Red Army to destroy Isis will it really be worse than our messing around?

SHappens 1 Oct 2015 15:26

Good summary. As an add on from Dr Bachar al-Jaafari, permanent syrian UN delegate 16/09/2015

- In the North, there are outlawed groups of called armed terrorists " Armed with the conquest " [Jaïch al-Fath], financed by Qatar and Turkey, that sends every day thousands of shells on Aleppo, killing hundreds and mutilating thousands of our citizens, preventing them from meeting their elementary needs on a daily basis.

In the South, rages another terrorist army financed by Saudi Arabia and Jordan, member state of this organization, country brother and neighbor of Syria. An army which proceeds in the same way by despicable terrorist acts against our citizens in this region.

In the suburbs of Damascus(damask), rages another army from the city of the Duma, a group of terrorists financed by Saudi Arabia, called up " Armed with the Islam " [Aich al Islam].

There are three terrorists groups who are armed, the first under the command of Turkey, the second in command of the Jordan, the third under the command of Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Backed up by the US, UK and France.

The US coalition is limited to preventing the Caliphate from spreading into forbidden territory but leaving it free to act in Syria. The columns of trucks and pick-up of Daesh which took Palmyra on May 21st circulated uncovered in the desert without being worried by the US Air Force.

The US coalition's airstrikes look like at best a gesture, at worst a smokescreen for future bombing campaign against Syria. The war prevented on September 2013 would be triggered under a new guise. But Russia took the ground. The priority is the fight against jihadism, associated with integrating the power of the political opposition, elections and a regional peace conference.

The US strategy, the long term strategic vision, was to bring down Assad under the blows of ISIS. And when the thugs will be in Damascus and attack the Russians in Tartus, the americans will support them until the Russians will withdraw, finally the US will bomb and destroy in half a day all the Califat's army which they contributed to create (the good guys).

Russia is about to put an end to this circus, hopefully with little collateral damage (thus beware of western propaganda on civilians toll) having high weapons tech to select targets accurately as mentioned in this article.


Abiesalba -> KriticalThinkingUK 1 Oct 2015 15:22

Politicians across Europe are welcoming Russia's intervention as the only long term solution to the refugee crisis and literally hundreds of millions of Europeans are supporting Russia's attack on ISIS, whatever lies you may read from the old cold warriors and their oligarch's press in the US and UK.

Very true. Here is Slovenia, the public opinion seems to be very strongly siding with Russia and against the insane US (judging from comments on forums).

And the US/UK media are truly an amazing brainwashing propaganda machine, straight from Orwell's 1984.


Jan Burton 1 Oct 2015 14:47

Russia isn't dumb or dishonest enough to make the meaningless distinctions between ISIS and other Islamist groups that the west insists on making. They're all out for the same thing and only differ on the details.

Putin in merely doing what needs to be done.

cherryredguitar 1 Oct 2015 14:48

Given that the so-called moderate rebels have a leader who videoed himself cutting a dead person's body open and eating one of the guys internal organs, the Russians are right not to differentiate between them and Isis.

Destroy all the extremists, even the ones that the Americans and Saudis like.

Abiesalba -> RobertNeville 1 Oct 2015 14:46

the Russians are allowed to fly the skies of Syria and the US is not.

Yes. Because the Syrian government asked Russia for a military intervention, whereas the US apparently have some superior right to illegally breach international borders as they wish and bomb whomever they like (Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Pakistan).

By the way, the very fact that Iraqi government asked for a military intervention is used by the US-led coalition to justify their strikes in Iraq.

jvillain -> Mr Russian 1 Oct 2015 14:44

The US, France and finally to a slightly lesser degree the UK want Assad gone more than they want ISIS, Al Quaida or the Army of God gone. If Assad falls all his weapons will belong to ISIS and crew as well as having total control of a state. The so called rebels are only 5% or so of the people fighting. All the other opposition groups have either merged with ISIS or been eliminated.

If Assad falls there will no longer be a choice but to put western boots on the ground in Syria in a big way.

WhetherbyPond 1 Oct 2015 14:43

The Ziocons in the US are very upset that their geopolitical game is being thwarted by Russia.


Abiesalba -> Mr Russian 1 Oct 2015 14:41

It surely is interesting how the Anglo-American media today went all hysterical about the alleged civilian casualties in Russian air strikes.

Well, how about some hysteria about this then:
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About 3000 people, including 162 civilians, killed in US- coalition airstrikes on areas in Syria

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, June 2015
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SOHR documented the death of 2896 people at least since the beginning of the U.S led coalition air strikes on Syria in 23/Sep until this morning, while hundreds others were wounded, vast majority IS extremists.

The number of civilians who were killed in the coalition airstrikes on oil areas, where there are oil refineries, oil wells, building and vehicles, in the provinces of al- Hasakah, Deir Ezzor, al- Raqqa, Aleppo and Idlib has risen to 162, including 51 children and 35 women.

Among the deaths, there are a family of a man, his wife and their 5 children killed due in US- led coalition airstrikes on the village of Dali Hasan in east of the town of Serrin in northeast of Aleppo and 64 civilians killed by a massacre committed by the U.S led coalition warplanes on Friday's night in 04/30/2015 when they targeted Bir Mahli village near the town of Serrin in Aleppo with several air strikes, and the death toll of this massacre includes:

– 31 children under the age of 16 including ( 16 females and 15 males ).
– 19 women above the age of 18.
– 13 men above the age of 18.
– A 18 years old boy.
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For more about civilian casualties due to the US-led coalition strikes in Syria and Iraq, see the Airwars website:

584 – 1,720 civilians killed:

To date, the international coalition has only conceded two "likely" deaths, from an event in early November 2014. It is also presently investigating seven further incidents of concern; is carrying out credibility assessments on a further 13; and has concluded three more investigations – having found no 'preponderance of evidence' to support civilian casualty claims.

[Oct 04, 2015] Saudis Mull Launch Of Regional War As Russia Pounds Targets In Syria For Fourth Day

Notable quotes:
"... Yes it is more about water rights than oil. ..."
"... Overthrowing Assad cuts Hezbollahs supply lines, which is THE point of the excercise. ..."
"... Now WATER and Israel. You are barking up the right tree. Much of all of this is about Greater Israel. If you were old like me, you would remember back when secular Arab states actually possed a real threat to Israel. All those state are now torn to pieces by US policy. So, see the connection? ..."
"... I maintain most of this is Israeli based. With the US doing Israeli bidding. ..."
"... You know most Americans are clueless as all they get is overwhelming propaganda from cradle to grave. It is the US policy makers that know they can use the American people's labor to continue with their nefarious plans. ..."
"... The neocons love death and killing, and it will come home. Ask Imperial Rome. The hubris is absolutely breathtaking." ..."
"... And once again we see who is driving American foreign policy in the Middle East -- our good friends the Royal family of Saudi Arabia. Putin really made a brilliant play on this one. Most Americans are cheering for him as he destroys the CIA created boggie man ISIS, and the CIA controlled US media doesn't know what the fuck to say about it because they've already convinced the public that ISIS is the real reason we're screwing around in Syria. Check mate unless the US decides to go full retard and start bombing the Russians based upon some false flag like the Russians bombing a hospital or something -- oops, can't really do that now either. ..."
"... The US has launched 6700 airstrikes on ISIS while the Russians have apparently degraded ISIS in just 60 airstrikes. ..."
"... The US and its allies have carried out 6700 airstrikes at an expense of nearly $4 billion in the year since President Barack Obama ordered a campaign against Islamic State. Yet the terror group shows no sign of defeat and has even expanded its reach. ..."
"... Sure a lot of ISIS fighters are probably true believers but those are the ones who will stand, fight, and be killed (blind pawns). However, seeing this is as much a covert operation as an overt operation then one has to think that the brains of the operation is made up of state operatives or mercenaries. These will not stand, fight, and die but run, re-arm, and redeploy elsewhere (Afghanistan->Stans->Russia or Afghanistan->China?). ..."
"... McCain is implicitly-and sections of the media are explicitly-pointing to a change in the Pentagon's rules of engagement in Syria announced by the Obama administration last spring that allows US forces to combat Syrian government forces or any other group or country that attacks US-backed "rebels." This is meant to put pressure on the White House to initiate attacks not only against Damascus, but also against Moscow. ..."
"... America's elites are as Trump says : a nation of neo-con elites whose mantra breeds --as incarnated by the NRA lobby --psychopathic mad shooters who have the genius of the devil. ..."
"... For some reason, nobody in the US-Saudi-Turkish-Israeli nexus thought Russia would actually intervene. I don't know why. Russia went to the mat over Syria a few years back when Obama, fresh off the triumph of turning Libya into a dumpster fire, shipped the same mercenaries who did the Gadhafi hit-job to Syria, freshly re-armed. Remember, those guys' presence was the real reason for the Benghazi fiasco; a fact HRC and the Obama Administration can't speak out loud and the GOP knows full well, making Benghazi the perfect political football. ..."
"... The US strategy of sparking and fueling a Sunni vs. Shi'a world sectarian war has taken a brutal hit. The Shi'a are in the extreme minority of Islam, but not in the Middle East, between Iran and the Mediterranean. ..."
"... But I'm keeping an eye on the Uighurs in China's Xinjiang Province, and the various -Stan nations. It will take a little while, but I'm guessing there will be "Mysterious", "Spontaneous" uprisings of extremist Sunni violence there. And "Mysterious" newcomers with beards and Saudi accents. ..."
"... Brilliantly, the Russians have stolen the "War on Terror" narrative. The US psychotics, psychopaths and megalomaniacs have proven incredibly stupid. Russia asks the US to join them in fighting the war on terror. Hilarious. ..."
Oct 04, 2015 | www.zerohedge.com

Looney

Lemme get it straight… Saudi Arabia and Qatar can't handle the Houtis in Yemen, but they think they can take on Russia? Oh, boy! I need a bigger popcorn bucket! ;-)

strannick

Like the US, these vile medieval "regional allies" try to frame their propaganda to show that this is about removing the dictator Assad, who actually is one of the most benign in that demented region. Its not.

They want him out because he opposed their pipeline, favoring instead the Iraqi Iran Shiite pipeline, which all three nations agreed to create. So much for national self determination. Otherwise they wouldnt give a shit what deranged lunatic ran Syria, or if Syria was ruled by some king as demented and tyranical and genocidal as they, -the Saudis and Qataris- are themselves.

Winston Churchill

Its not about an indefencible gas pipline at all.

By deception we wage war.

Its about potable water in south Lebanon.

Without that Israel is a failed desert state within ten years.

Go do the research yourself, all the data has been out there for nearly fifty years.

Hidden in plain sight.

swmnguy

Israel has to have the Litani river from source to outlet.

The pipeline from Qatar is a real project too, though.

Captain Debtcrash

Saudis' won't mess with Russia because they know the US probably wouldn't intervene on their behalf, we don't want to mess with Russia either and vice versa. It was already agreed we would let them do what they want and talk a good game in opposition.

That said, if I'm wrong, I don't think we will have to worry about low oil prices any more.

Oracle of Kypseli

Desal water is much more expensive than oil.

And... Yes it is more about water rights than oil. The Jordan river is now a small slow moving creek.

Winston Churchill

The Litani is part of the headwaters of the river Jordan.

The Golan overlooks the Jordan.Whick looks like a stream in comparison to what is was fifty ago, and a dried up mud hole relative to 150yrs ago. I wish I could post a photo from the 1860's I have of the Jordan, its a glass plate negative taken by my great grandfather.

Overthrowing Assad cuts Hezbollahs supply lines, which is THE point of the excercise.

If, as reported yesterday, Putin is going to supply Hezbollah direct with armaments, Putin will have a Israels balls in a vice, no wonder Nutjob is going apeshit..

Jack Burton

Good point Winston. I have always been dubious about the Pipeline argument. As you say, even if built, this pipeline would run through very hostile places, sure to be hit over and over again.

Now WATER and Israel. You are barking up the right tree. Much of all of this is about Greater Israel. If you were old like me, you would remember back when secular Arab states actually possed a real threat to Israel. All those state are now torn to pieces by US policy. So, see the connection?

Israel must, with in a decade take and hold souther Lebanon of perish. The only water left is there, Israel must have it. So they will take it, to hold it, they need Syria dead and Lebanon a failed stated.

I maintain most of this is Israeli based. With the US doing Israeli bidding.

The Indelicate ...

the Qatar pipeline argument never made any sense because:

1] you don't build a pipeline through chaos which will last years, which is precisely what Israel, most of all wants - a bloodletting that destroys another regional economic, and to an extent military rival.

2] Cost/benefit wise it doesn't make sense to spend this sort of money and time to go through Syria - look at a map.

3] Israel's Leviathan find, it's plans to ethnically cleanse the remainder of Palestine, and find/create pretexts to attack and invade more of Lebanon, Syria, and Sinai. It's plans to steal the gas that, if international law applied to the Jewish State, Gaza, Syria, and Lebanon.

Early Zionist Interest In Lebanon - Laura Zittrain Eisenberg
http://www.bintjbeil.com/E/history/zionism.html

Israel Wants The Litani River Desperately
http://northerntruthseeker.blogspot.com/2010/08/israel-wants-litani-rive...

HOORAY FOR HEZBOLLAH!
http://www.tomatobubble.com/id775.html

flysofree

This is a load of crap. I lived in the Caribbean and our source of water was desalinization plant. It wasn't as expansive as you say, even the poorest locals could easily afford it. The problem with desalinization plants was that intake valves would clog up with seaweed during storms!

There is no evidence whatsoever that Israel is planning any aggression towards its neighbors. It's also no secret that ALL of Israel air strikes into Syria involved intercepts of weapons shipments from Iran; that's clearly stated in mainstream media reporting!

You must be a deluded old twig, if you even attempt to compare Nazi Germany Lebensraum policies of total liquidation of local populations to modern Israeli politics of settler land grab in the West Bank.

Winston Churchill

I'm old like you Jack, but travelled extensively throughout the MENA, a family tradition you could say, my great grandfather and grandfather were involved in opening up tourism/biz to a lot of the area.Long before oil was discovered. Have some 'wrong side of the blanket' relatives who I keep in contact with as well.

SWRichmond

Lemme get it straight… Saudi Arabia and Qatar can't handle the Houtis in Yemen, but they think they can take on Russia? Oh, boy! I need a bigger popcorn bucket! ;-)

Putin is confident in his backing at home. Russian people are, for lack of a better way to put it, accustomed to "doing without" while supporting the motherland. Saudi, on the other hand, has completely spoilt their home population with their temporary wealth (now in doubt), paying them just to live, making them soft and expectant, petulant, self indulgent (sound familiar?). Putin is quite obviously "going for it", pressing his position, because he believes he will prevail. The gloves are off. USA is broke, and Putin knows it. Petrodollar is on its death bed, and he knows it, and he is willing to overtly hasten its death.

Final question, for bonus points: how do nations traditionally finance wars?

Answer: BY DEBASING THEIR CURRENCIES.

PacOps

Didn't someone pull some kind of shit like that on the Soviet Union a few decades back? ;-)

Sun, 10/04/2015 - 11:48 | 6628206 swmnguy

The Russian people can feed themselves. Not lavishly; cabbage and "cole" vegetables; potatoes; a little meat, fish and poultry; cold-weather grains; but they can feed themselves. Not so much for the Saudis and Qataris etc. Also, the Russians make their own stuff. They don't have to import slaves who outnumber them.

Yes, if the luxury is suddenly removed from their lives, the Russian people wouldn't notice, never having had much in the first place. But the Saudis and Qataris can't survive in their current arrangements.

kananga

"So, millions of Saudi refugees invading Europe?"
More like, 100 Saudi Royals invading Monaco.

lincolnsteffens

You know most Americans are clueless as all they get is overwhelming propaganda from cradle to grave. It is the US policy makers that know they can use the American people's labor to continue with their nefarious plans.

Sir Edge

Yes...

Plus One Kabillion SWR... Perfectly Said...

"USA is preparing to rip itself apart. For some reason Americans believe they can foist death, destruction, mayhem and hopelessness upon the entire rest of the planet, while somehow remaining immune from it themselves. The neocons love death and killing, and it will come home. Ask Imperial Rome. The hubris is absolutely breathtaking."

strannick

Exactly.

How dare Russia and Iran tinker with America and Suadis bombed out, fucked up Shangrala that is their legacy in the Middle East.

researchfix

They know what´s coming. Iran and Russia will chase ISIS to the Saudi border. And then they stop the chase. And then the next chapter enfolds.

cosmyccowboy

Stick with the small bucket, I do not believe that the Saudi little boy lovers and women beaters sill last long against the Russians, Syrians and Iranians. Their mercenaries will flee from a real fighting force!

HowdyDoody

Saudi are being setup as Zion's stooges. If they win - ZIon gets lebensraum to the north of Israel, if they lose - lebensraum to the south. The inevitable public reason for the land grab - poor defenseless little Israel needs a buffer zone between it and the Muslims.

LetThemEatRand

And once again we see who is driving American foreign policy in the Middle East -- our good friends the Royal family of Saudi Arabia. Putin really made a brilliant play on this one. Most Americans are cheering for him as he destroys the CIA created boggie man ISIS, and the CIA controlled US media doesn't know what the fuck to say about it because they've already convinced the public that ISIS is the real reason we're screwing around in Syria. Check mate unless the US decides to go full retard and start bombing the Russians based upon some false flag like the Russians bombing a hospital or something -- oops, can't really do that now either.

Bendromeda Strain

And once again we see who is driving American foreign policy in the Middle East -- our good friends the Royal family of Saudi Arabia.

Do not fail to miss the "go to" interview with the demon worshipper at The European Council of Foreign Relations. Saudi Arabia's interest just happens to *currently* align with the globalists. Convenient for them - for now.

TheReplacement

I disagree. I think the drivers are unnamed and the royals of KSA are both a faction and a pawn. They would look at themselves and see a faction. When looked down upon by TPTB they are pawns (like 99.999999% of humanity).

I also do not see most Americans cheering for Putin. I see most Americans are absolutely ignorant and clueless as per usual. Some think they are informed and think evil Putin grasping at empire. I cannot speak to Putin's motives and I do hold suspicion of anybody who has maintained power like his as long as that man. Still, I have to ask them what exactly Putin has done.

"Invaded Ukraine."

Really? Show me pictures and video that isn't years old and taken from a completely different country while I show you pictures and video of the US State Department funding and fomenting a violent uprising by neo nazis against a constitutionally elected government (this is not to say that I disagree in any way with Ukrainians taking action of their own volition but that isn't what happened).

"Well, he shot down that jetliner."

Proof? The west has all the evidence and we have no proof. You do realize the official report only confirmed that the jet was in fact shotdown. They have presented no evidence that either confirms nor denies any particular faction did in fact shoot it down.

"He's invading Syria."

Putin was invited by the Syrian government because ISIS and their allies were starting to win the war despite our forces supposedly bombing them all year. If we were bombing and droning them, in addition to the fighting by the Iraqis, Syrians, and Kurds, then why were they still winning? If Russia, Syria, and Iran all want to defeat ISIS then who is it that wants ISIS to win - who is supporting the bad guys in black if all the other bad guys are trying to kill them?

"I don't know. You wanna watch the Redsox?"

JustObserving

The corrupt, criminal, cruel cabal that rules Saudi Arabia should have collapsed years ago. So let them start another war and collapse now. Karma is a bitch. Hope ISIS are pushed into Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

The US has launched 6700 airstrikes on ISIS while the Russians have apparently degraded ISIS in just 60 airstrikes. Was the US dropping care packages and videos made in Langley?

The US and its allies have carried out 6700 airstrikes at an expense of nearly $4 billion in the year since President Barack Obama ordered a campaign against Islamic State. Yet the terror group shows no sign of defeat and has even expanded its reach.

http://www.rt.com/news/314885-isis-usa-anniversary-campaign/

TheReplacement

I question that narrative. Sure a lot of ISIS fighters are probably true believers but those are the ones who will stand, fight, and be killed (blind pawns). However, seeing this is as much a covert operation as an overt operation then one has to think that the brains of the operation is made up of state operatives or mercenaries. These will not stand, fight, and die but run, re-arm, and redeploy elsewhere (Afghanistan->Stans->Russia or Afghanistan->China?).

JustObserving

Does the Doomsday clock have a seconds hand ?

Does it have a nanosecond hand?

Threat of wider war mounts as Russia continues airstrikes in Syria

More prominent are voices calling for an even more reckless US policy of escalation against both Assad and Putin. They speak for powerful sections of the foreign policy and military-intelligence establishment that are implacably hostile to the nuclear deal with Iran and bent on war with Russia and China.

John McCain, the Republican chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, spoke for this faction Wednesday. He declared from the Senate floor, "Into the wreckage of this administration's Middle East policy has now stepped Putin. As in Ukraine and elsewhere, he perceives the administration's inaction and caution as weakness, and he is taking advantage."

On Thursday, McCain told CNN that he could "absolutely confirm" that the initial Russian strikes were "against our Free Syrian Army or groups that have been armed and trained by the CIA…"

McCain is implicitly-and sections of the media are explicitly-pointing to a change in the Pentagon's rules of engagement in Syria announced by the Obama administration last spring that allows US forces to combat Syrian government forces or any other group or country that attacks US-backed "rebels." This is meant to put pressure on the White House to initiate attacks not only against Damascus, but also against Moscow.

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2015/10/02/syri-o02.html

falak pema

That the Sunni clans find the Russian Iran entente a threat to their creationist minded ideology is understandable--to the extent that Turkey has reverted to obscurantist logic and effaced Ataturk's legacy from its current political inclination-- and that Saud and Qatar, as inheritors of the Pax Americana Oil protected legacy, have reverted to the same ideological stance in a regressional spiral that shocks the word-- is one thing ; that the West adheres to this same logic is another. The history of the wahhabist arabs monarchies is diametrically opposed to that of the West in terms of political priorities.

The latter trend, of regression to neo-feudal ideology, is a betrayal of western values that are the bedrocks of our society.

There is no excuse for this regression, now brought out to the open by a Shia theocracy aligned with a autocratic Russia, which make the so called democratic West look like the new Evil Empire.

We are now in a spiral in West that will bring down democracy and replace it by a neo-feudal autocracy that will have nothing to envy the most evil traits of the Spanish Inquisition.

America's elites are as Trump says : a nation of neo-con elites whose mantra breeds --as incarnated by the NRA lobby --psychopathic mad shooters who have the genius of the devil.

Even Putin and Khameini look like moderates!

ThroxxOfVron

Russia is not allied with Iran.

That both Russia and Iran perceive that it is in their individual interestes to intervene in Syria does not make them allies.

The only reason that Russia and Iran welcome the others intervention is that it temporarily relieves each of them of the full weight of the financing costs of their respective interventions which would be higher if undertaken alone, and relieves both of some amount of the international political pressures being manifest by the US/Zio powers opposed to their interventions.

Russia and Iran do not share the same goals and will not employ the same methods.

Any appearance of mutual support is tangenital and temporary. It will dissipate rapidly when their true divergent interests become apparent in due course and as their opportunities in the Trans-Syrian theater evolves.

Likely the two will immediately become opponents in Syria as other forces are ejected from the theater in much the same manner as Russia and the British/US did in Germany when Berlin fell at the end of the WW2.

What I do not think is being spoken of publicly is the fact that Iraq is effectively being carved up while the focus is on Syria.

I do not think Iraq will exist, or certainly will not exist with the same territorial boundaries, when the Trans-Syrian ( Great Sunni/Shia ) War is concluded.

swmnguy

I would guess Kurdish leaders are doing everything they can to get an audience in the Kremlin about now. This is their best chance ever at an independent Kurdistan, protected by Iran and Russia. There won't ever be a better moment for them. The US has been using them as we used the Hmong in Laos in the Vietnam War. Time for the Kurds to get out of the firing line and into an arrangement with local regional powers who will actually pay them in the coin of their choosing in return for their services.

swmnguy

I don't think Saudi Arabia can do anything more than transfer some ancient handheld anti-arcraft missiles to their Syrian proxies, through third-parties. I can't imagine the Saudis openly attacking the Russians. I doubt they'd ship anything directly traceable back to them.

For some reason, nobody in the US-Saudi-Turkish-Israeli nexus thought Russia would actually intervene. I don't know why. Russia went to the mat over Syria a few years back when Obama, fresh off the triumph of turning Libya into a dumpster fire, shipped the same mercenaries who did the Gadhafi hit-job to Syria, freshly re-armed. Remember, those guys' presence was the real reason for the Benghazi fiasco; a fact HRC and the Obama Administration can't speak out loud and the GOP knows full well, making Benghazi the perfect political football.

But if you look at the atlas, and at Russian behavior since the 1970s, it's pretty obvious why they aren't going to tolerate radical insane Sunni mercenary armies running around in their backyard. In Syria, different from Ukraine, the local recognized government can invite them in. Now it looks like the local recognized government in Iraq has invited them in, too.

The US strategy of sparking and fueling a Sunni vs. Shi'a world sectarian war has taken a brutal hit. The Shi'a are in the extreme minority of Islam, but not in the Middle East, between Iran and the Mediterranean.

The Saudis will whine and cry, but not do much. Israel is going to get real quiet. I'd guess the US will cut bait on their proxies. But I'm keeping an eye on the Uighurs in China's Xinjiang Province, and the various -Stan nations. It will take a little while, but I'm guessing there will be "Mysterious", "Spontaneous" uprisings of extremist Sunni violence there. And "Mysterious" newcomers with beards and Saudi accents.

45North1

All this crap really ramped up about the time Libya was destroyed by NATO. Civilian deaths certainly have soared from 2011 to now.

Not saying there is a coincidence with respect to Libya being destroyed , but I can't help but think there is some link between liberated Libyan weapon staches and the accelerated actions of the various iterations of Syrian Rebels and re-labeled Terrorists in Syria. Syrian People have subsequently suffered. Infrastructure has been destroyed, Syria risks a future as a failed state (ala Libya) if overrun. I am sure Syria can take some comfort in knowiing that Libya got a new Central Bank as NATO munitions were still landing.)

Hopefully Policies of other players in the Syrian mess don't adopt the in for a penny , in for a pound approach to this debacle.... but I have my doubts.

Islam needs to get itself together if there is ever to be peace in the Middle East.

Pigs will probably fly first.

Atticus Finch

Brilliantly, the Russians have stolen the "War on Terror" narrative. The US psychotics, psychopaths and megalomaniacs have proven incredibly stupid. Russia asks the US to join them in fighting the war on terror. Hilarious.

Paracelsus

Correct. Gaddafi would have had tons of munitions.These were transported with US help thru Turkey into Syria.With the Iraq war destabilizing the entire region,

The Kurds were able to establish there own mini-state with the bonus of oil in the ground. Turkey has always been the weak man in the area politically, and has always opposed an
independent Kurdish nation.

I am waiting for the first Russian warplane to be brought down and the pilot roasted in a cage (on video). I can't see where the Russkies would be very happy with the CIA/Mercs who provided the ManPads for this event. The Russkies are very good at the airpower thing. The Iranians are tough on the ground. The Russkies seem to want to get this over in months or less.

Funny how they don't seem to worry about any UN Security Council condemnation. Chinese Veto?

Well, death of the PetroDollar system. History in front of our eyes.. The only wildcard is the Israelis threat to use nukes if they don't get their way. Aside from the PetroDollar collapse, there exists a strong threat of China and others dumping Treasuries on the finance markets (if they are unhappy with US foreign policy).

"May you live in interesting times".....

Truly Inspiration

You really raise serious questions about just how "intelligent" US intelligence actually is??

Why shall US target their own people when the ISIS top commander is an AMERICAN! You don't believe it?

Nada a 19 year old woman just escaped from hell,

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3253107/Is-ISIS-commander-AMERIC...


sudzee

SA worried that the "coalition of the good and honest" Russia/Syria/Iran and Iraq will corner ISIS and force them south thru western Iraq/eastern Jordan into Saudi Arabia itself. The Royal Family, beheaders in chief, will receive the goes around.

AlfredNeumann

Hillary Clinton : We created Al-Qaeda
Hillary Clinton : We created Al-Qaeda
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dqn0bm4E9yw

Gregor Samsa

This cartoon says it best: http://sputniknews.com/cartoons/20151002/1027919479/us-russia-syria-cart...

forgotten in th...

Here some social media statements by members of the "moderate islamic opposition" that Barack Obama and his two piece of shit (Cameron and Hollande) are supporting.

From wikipedia

In response to reports of Russian intervention, the Army of Conquest's Liwa al-Haqq commander Abu Abdullah Taftanaz posted a tweet addressing the "infidel Russians", inviting them to send troops to Syria and saying that "we have thousands like Khattab" who would "slaughter your pigs".[76][77] Abu Abdullah Taftanaz also tweeted Russian military terms for Syrian rebels to familiarize themselves with if they intercepted Russian radio chatter.[78][79][80][81][82] Reportedly Chechen and Caucasian foreign fighters have begun flocking to the coastal regions of Syria where the Russians are based in order to seek them out.[83]

Ahmad Eissa al-Sheikh, a commander in Turkish/Saudi-backed Ahrar ash-Sham,[84] threatened to bring upon "Russian hell in a Levantine flavor" if they encountered the Russians.[85][86] Harakat Fajr ash-Sham al-Islamiya leader Abu Abdullah ash-Shami tweeted about the "globalization" of the "Levantine Jihad".[87][88] He also tweeted that on the Russians and said that "The Levant will become their graveyard, with the permission of Allah".[89] The Al-Qaeda-linked Al-Nusra Front[90] has set a reward for the seizure of Russian soldiers of 2,500,000 Syrian pounds (approximately US$13,000).[91][92]

The Syria based, Al-Qaeda linked Saudi cleric Abdallah Muhammad Al-Muhaysini threatened that Syria would be a "tomb for its invaders" or "graveyard for invaders" in response to the Russian intervention and brought up the Soviet war in Afghanistan.[93][94][95]

AlfredNeumann
Syria Update# Air Duel between the Sukhoi Su - 30 Russian SM and Israeli F-15 Tags:
Six Russian fighter jets type Multirole Sukhoi SU - 30 SM have intercepted 4 Israeli McDonnell Douglas F-15's fighter bombers attempting to infiltrate the Syrian coast.The Israeli F 15 warplanes have been flying over Syrian airspace for months and in particular the coast of Latakia, which is now the bridgehead of the Russian forces in Syria.

The Israeli jets would generally follow a fairly complex flight plan and approach Latakia from the sea

On the night of 1 October 02, 2015, six Sukhoi SU-30 Russian SM fighters took off from the Syrian Hmimim airbase in the direction of Cyprus, before changing course and intercepting the four Israeli F-15 fighters off the coast of Syria, that were flying in attack formation.

Surprised by a situation as unexpected and probably not prepared for a dogfight with one of the best Russian multipurpose fighters, Israeli pilots have quickly turned back South at high speed over the Lebanon.

The mighty Israeli military doesn't do so well against opponents who can actually fight back! They'll probably bomb Gaza again so they can feel butch about themselves!

Read more: WHAT REALLY HAPPENED | The History The US Government HOPES You Never Learn! http://whatreallyhappened.com/#ixzz3ncnOMUxV

Amun

"on November 2, 1917, British imperialism in Palestine began when Lord Balfour, the then British foreign secretary and former prime minister, sent a letter to Baron Rothschild, one of the leaders of the Zionist movement. This letter became known as the "Balfour Declaration".

In that letter, Balfour promised British support for the Zionist programme of establishing a "national home for the Jewish people" in Palestine. This pledge of support was made without consulting the indigenous Christian and Muslim inhabitants of Palestine, the Palestinian people. And it was made before British troops had even conquered the land.

Balfour, on behalf of Britain, promised Palestine – over which Britain had no legal right – to a people who did not even live there (of the very small community of Palestinian Jews in Palestine in 1917, very few were Zionists). And he did so with the worst of intentions: to discourage Jewish immigration to Britain. No wonder Lord Montagu, the only Jewish member of the Cabinet, opposed the declaration.

And yet, just two years earlier, Britain had committed herself to assisting the Arab nations in achieving their independence from the Ottoman Empire. Arab fighters all over the region, including thousands of Palestinians, fought for their freedom, allowing Britain to establish her mandate in Palestine. "

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/palestinianauthority/9645925/Britain-must-atone-for-its-sins-in-Palestine.html

Abiesalba 1 Oct 2015 14:29

With respect to the total mess in Syria, to my knowledge there has been only one recent poll conducted across Syria (see below). The pollsters say that the poll is representative of the people of Syria. A similar poll was also conducted in Iraq. Both polls were conducted in June-July 2015:
-
82% of Syrians agree that ISIS was foreign-created by the US (17% disagree).

85% of Iraqis agree that ISIS was foreign-created by the US (10% disagree).
-
-
Among the warring sides in Syria, Assad has the highest (!) support – 47% of Syrians think he has a POSITIVE influence (50% negative) .

Compare to the groups which the US 'coalition' and the Anglo-Americans media claim we should all support:

Free Syrian Army – 35% positive, 63% negative

Syrian Opposition Coalition – 26% positive, 72% negative
-
Considering the polling results, anyone claiming that Assad should be removed is working AGAINST half of the Syrians. Putin is right – Assad has to be included in any solution to the war. Else, there will immediately a rebellion of half of Syrians against FOREIGN powers toppling Assad.

Assad will not come to the negotiating table without Putin.

Besides, it is clear that for Syrians (and Iraqis), the truly BAD guys are the Americans.
-
-
PUBLIC OPINION IN SYRIA
-
Fieldwork: June 10 to July 2

Respondents: 1,365 Syrians from all 14 governorates of the country
-
-
Thinking about the persons and the groups which are working now in Syria, Generally, do you think that their influence is negative or positive on the matters in Syria
-
Positive … Negative
-
47% … 50% … Bashar al-Asad
43% … 55% … Iran
37% … 55% … Arab Gulf Countries
35% … 63% … Nusra Front
35% … 63% … Free Syrian Army
26% … 72% … Syrian Opposition Coalition
21% … 76% … Islamic State
-
-
There are many reasons around to explain the presence of ISIL in Iraq/Syria, please tell me if strongly agree, somewhat agree, somewhat disagree, or a strongly disagree for the reason that explains the presence of ISIL?
-
Agree … Disagree
-
82% … 17% … ISIL is foreign made by the US

59% … 40% … As a result of widespread sectarian politics in the Arab countries and in Turkey

55% … 44% …ISIL is made by some Arab regimes

50% … 48% … ISIL is created by foreign countries to find a balance with Iran

44% … 55% … Wrong policies pursued by the Syrian government

42% … 56% … Syrian regime made ISIL for marking the opposition to terrorism

39% … 57% … Iran is supporting this organization to weaken Iraq and take it under its control

22% … 76% … Sectarian congestion that has arisen in Syria
-
-
Do you support or oppose the international coalition airstrikes in Syria?
-
Support … Oppose

47% … 50%
-
-
According to your view, which of the following represent the best solution for the crisis which Syria is in today?
-
51% … Political solution
37% … Military solution
-
-
Note: The poll has a margin of error of +/-3 percentage points.

Sources:

Polls Show Syrians Overwhelmingly Blame U.S. for ISIS (16 September 2015)

Full polling reports by the British ORB International (affiliate of WIN/Gallup International):

* Syria http://www.opinion.co.uk/perch/resources/syriadata.pdf

* Iraq http://www.opinion.co.uk/perch/resources/iraqdata.pdf

[Oct 04, 2015] Gulf states plan military response as Putin raises the stakes in Syria

Notable quotes:
"... The Russian intervention is a massive setback for those states backing the opposition, particularly within the region – Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey – and is likely to elicit a strong response in terms of a counter-escalation ..."
"... Saudi Arabia and Qatar are already embroiled in an expensive and bloody war in Yemen that may limit both their military and financial resources. ..."
Oct 04, 2015 | The Guardian

Regional powers have quietly, but effectively, channelled funds, weapons and other support to rebel groups making the biggest inroads against the forces from Damascus. In doing so, they are investing heavily in a conflict which they see as part of a wider regional struggle for influence with bitter rival Iran.

In a week when Russia made dozens of bombing raids, those countries have made it clear that they remain at least as committed to removing Assad as Moscow is to preserving him.

"There is no future for Assad in Syria," Saudi foreign minister Adel Al-Jubeir warned, a few hours before the first Russian bombing sorties began. If that was not blunt enough, he spelled out that if the president did not step down as part of a political transition, his country would embrace a military option, "which also would end with the removal of Bashar al-Assad from power".

... ... ...

"The Russian intervention is a massive setback for those states backing the opposition, particularly within the region – Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey – and is likely to elicit a strong response in terms of a counter-escalation," said Julien Barnes-Dacey, senior policy fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations.

... ... ...

Saudi Arabia and Qatar are already embroiled in an expensive and bloody war in Yemen that may limit both their military and financial resources.

[Sep 27, 2015] US On The Ropes China To Join Russian Military In Syria While Iraq Strikes Intel Deal With Moscow, Tehran

Sep 27, 2015 | Zero Hedge
What appears to have happened here is this: Vladimir Putin has exploited both the fight against ISIS and Iran's need to preserve the regional balance of power on the way to enhancing Russia's influence over Mid-East affairs which in turn helps to ensure that Gazprom's interests are protected going forward.

Thanks to the awkward position the US has gotten itself in by covertly allying itself with various Sunni extremist groups, Washington is for all intents and purposes powerless to stop Putin lest the public should suddenly get wise to the fact that combating Russia's resurgence and preventing Iran from expanding its interests are more important than fighting terror.

In short, Washington gambled on a dangerous game of geopolitical chess, lost, and now faces two rather terrifyingly disastrous outcomes: 1) China establishing a presence in the Mid-East in concert with Russia and Iran, and 2) seeing Iraq effectively ceded to the Quds Force and ultimately, to the Russian army.

[Sep 26, 2015] Standing Before Congress, Pope Francis Calls Out the Industry of Death

Sep 26, 2015 | original.antiwar.com
Sep 26, 2015 | Antiwar.com

Pope Francis' address to Congress was almost certainly not what John Boehner, Mitch McConnell, and other congressional leaders had in mind when they invited the pope to speak.

It probably wasn't what they were all thinking about during the last standing ovations. But here was Pope Francis, revered as the People's Pope, calling out war profiteers and demanding an end to the arms trade. Just as simple and as powerful as that.

... ... ...

"Being at the service of dialogue and peace also means being truly determined to minimize and, in the long term, to end the many armed conflicts throughout our world," the pope said. Then he asked the critical question: "Why are deadly weapons being sold to those who plan to inflict untold suffering on individuals and society?"

He answered it himself: "Sadly, the answer, as we all know, is simply for money: money that is drenched in blood, often innocent blood. In the face of this shameful and culpable silence, it is our duty to confront the problem and to stop the arms trade."

Stop the arms trade. What a simple, clear call.

That means the ending things like the $60 billion arms deal the US made a few years back with Saudi Arabia, where those weapons are, in the pope's words, "inflicting untold suffering on individuals and society," especially in Syria and Yemen. It means ending things like the $45 billion in new military aid – mostly in the form of advanced new weapons – the Israeli government has requested from Washington between now and 2028. It means ending the provision of new arms to scores of unaccountable militias in Syria, where even the White House admits a nonmilitary solution is needed. And it means ending things like the $1.1 billion in arms sales the United States has made to Mexico this year alone.

And, of course, it means no longer diverting at least 54 cents of every discretionary taxpayer dollar in the federal budget to the US military.

Actually, members of Congress – so many of whom rely on huge campaign donations from arms manufacturers, and so many of whom refuse to vote against military procurement because often just a few dozen jobs connected to it might be in their district – really should have expected the pope to say exactly what he did.

It was only last May, after all, that Pope Francis told a group of schoolchildren visiting the Vatican that the arms trade is the "industry of death." When a kid asked why so many powerful people don't want peace, the pope answered simply, "because they live off wars!" Francis explained how people become rich by producing and selling weapons. "And this is why so many people do not want peace. They make more money with the war!"

The pope's speech to Congress was quite extraordinary on a number of fronts.

... ... ...

Phyllis Bennis is a fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies and author of the forthcoming Understanding ISIS and the New Global War on Terror: A Primer. Manuel Perez-Rocha is an associate fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies. Reprinted with permission from Foreign Policy In Focus.

[Aug 13, 2015] Its not migrants who are the marauders and plunderers

Notable quotes:
"... The sultan of Najd, Abdelaziz al-Saud bowed his head before the British High Commissioner in Percy Cox's Iraq. His voice quavered, and then he started begging with humiliation: "Your grace are my father and you are my mother. I can never forget the debt I owe you. You made me and you held my hand, you elevated me and lifted me. I am prepared, at your beckoning, to give up for you now half of my kingdom…no, by Allah, I will give up all of my kingdom, if your grace commands me! ..."
Aug 13, 2015 | The Guardian

Never let it be said that Britain's leaders miss an opportunity to inflame fear and loathing towards migrants and refugees. First David Cameron warned of the threat posed by "a swarm of people" who were "coming across the Mediterranean … wanting to come to Britain". Then his foreign secretary Philip Hammond upped the ante.

The chaos at the Channel tunnel in Calais, he declared, was caused by "marauding" migrants who posed an existential threat. Cheer-led by the conservative press, he warned that Europe would not be able to "protect itself and preserve its standard of living" if it had to "absorb millions of migrants from Africa".

With nightly television coverage of refugees from the world's worst conflicts risking their lives to break into lorries and trains heading for Britain, this was rhetoric designed to stoke visceral fears of the wretched of the Earth emerging from its depths.

Barely a hint of humanity towards those who have died in Calais this summer has escaped ministers' lips. But in reality the French port is a sideshow, home to a few thousand migrants unable to pay traffickers for more promising routes around Britain's border controls.

Europe's real refugee crisis is in the Mediterranean. More than 180,000 have reached Italy and Greece by sea alone this year, and more than 2,000 have died making the crossing, mostly from war-ravaged Libya. The impact on Greece, already wracked with crisis, is at tipping point.

On the Greek island of Kos, 2,000 mostly Syrian and Afghan refugees were rounded up on Tuesday and locked in a sports stadium after clashes with riot police, who used stun grenades to maintain order. Numbers reaching the Greek islands have quadrupled since last year.

But nothing in Europe matches the millions who have been driven to seek refuge in Turkey, Lebanon, Pakistan or Jordan. Set against such a global drama, Calais is little more than deathly theatre. Britain is not one of the main destinations for either refugees or illegal migrants – the vast majority of whom overstay their visas, rather than stow away in the Channel tunnel.

Last year 25,870 sought asylum in the UK and only 10,050 were accepted. By contrast, Sweden accepted three times as many and Germany had more than 200,000 asylum and new asylum applicants. Nor is Britain's asylum seeker's benefit rate, at £36.95 a week, remotely the magnet it is portrayed. France pays £41.42; in Norway it's £88.65.

What does suck overwhelmingly legal migrant workers into Britain is a highly deregulated labour market, where workplace protection is often not enforced and which both gangmasters and large private companies are able ruthlessly to exploit.

The case, reported in the Guardian, of the entirely legal Lithuanian farm workers – who are suing a Kent-based gangmaster supplying high street supermarkets over inhuman working conditions, debt bondage and violent intimidation – is only the extreme end of a growing underbelly of harsh and insecure employment.

If ministers were remotely concerned about "rogue employers driving down wages" by using illegal migrants, as they claim, they would be strengthening trade unions and rights at work. But they're doing the opposite. And they're using the language of dehumanisation to justify slashing support for asylum seekers' children, locking up refused applicants indefinitely and targeting illegal workers far more enthusiastically than the employers who exploit them.

But what risks dividing communities can also turn them against such anti-migrant crackdowns. In recent months, flash protests have erupted in London and other cities against UK Border Agency attempts to arrest failed asylum seekers or undocumented migrant workers. In areas such as Elephant and Castle, riot police have been called in after UKBA vans were surrounded and pelted with eggs by angry locals and activists trying to prevent the detention of people seen as part of the community.

The chaos at Calais and the far larger-scale upheaval and suffering across Europe could be brought under control by the kind of managed processing that northern European governments, such as Britain's, are so keen to avoid.

'If the current US and British-backed Saudi bombing campaign in Yemen continues, expect Yemeni refugees to join the region's exodus in the months to come.'

'If the current US and British-backed Saudi bombing campaign in Yemen continues, expect Yemeni refugees to join the region's exodus in the months to come.' Photograph: Yahya Arhab/EPA

But that would only be a temporary fix for a refugee crisis driven by war and state disintegration – and Britain, France and their allies have played a central role in most of the wars that are fuelling it. The refugees arriving in Europe come from Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Sudan, Pakistan, Somalia and Eritrea.

With the recent exception of the dictatorial Eritrean regime, those are a roll-call of more than a decade of disastrous western-led wars and interventions. In the case of Libya, the British and French-led bombing campaign in 2011 led directly to the civil war and social breakdown that has made the country the main conduit for refugee trafficking from Africa. And in Syria, the western funding, arming and training of opposition groups – while fuelling the rise of Isis – has played a crucial role in the country's destruction.

If the current American and British-backed Saudi bombing campaign in Yemen continues, expect Yemeni refugees to join the region's exodus in the months to come. So the first longer term contribution Britain and its allies could make to staunching the flow of refugees would be to stop waging open and covert wars in the Middle East and north Africa. That is actual marauding.

The second would be a major shift in policy towards African development. Africa may not be leading the current refugee crisis, and African migrants certainly don't threaten European living standards. But as a group of global poverty NGOs argued this week, Africa is being drained of resources through western corporate profit extraction, extortionate debt repayments and one-sided trade "partnership" deals. If that plunder continues and absolute numbers in poverty go on rising as climate change bites deeper, migration pressures to the wealthy north can only grow.

There is a genuine migration crisis driven by war and neoliberal globalisation. Despite the scaremongering, it hasn't yet reached Britain. But it's a fantasy to imagine that fences, deportations and better security can protect fortress Europe. An end to the real plunder and marauding would be more effective.


ID0049691 nadel 13 Aug 2015 10:55

Why don't you start with yourself? How many of your ancestors like millions of other Europeans, went to Africa, the Americas, Australia, New Zealand and elsewhere to "settle" there over the past centuries? Now that the tide is turning you and your likes do nothing but whine and accuse others of being "left wingers". The left wingers seem to be the only people left with human feelings.

Beastcheeks 13 Aug 2015 10:55

Thank you Seamus - a beacon of light amongst the marauding dirge of mass media ignorance and hatred that characterises the current mainstream British position. When I read many of responses to your reasoned arguments - I hang my head in shame. Mass delusion and hatred not dissimilar to Nazi Germany I'm afraid. The very fact you have to spell out the obvious truth - that you can't bomb the hell out of people and then cry foul when they come to us for safe refuge - beggars belief. I am well and truly disgusted and am in the process of relinquishing my British nationality. No longer am I willing to tolerate such ignorant intolerance in my name.


rentierDEATHcult 13 Aug 2015 10:51

Shias are not joining ISIS ... but the vast majority of Sunnis are not joining it, either !?

Kurds are Sunnis - they're fighting ISIS.

Sunni tribes in Iraq are collaborating with Shia (often Iranian) militias to fight ISIS.

Even fellow Sunni Jihadists in the al-Nusra Front (& affiliated brigades) regard ISIS as ignorant nihilists and want to have nothing to do with them.

Your thesis about a Shia + Sunni conflict driving the wave of migration into Europe is, simply, flawed.

Its utter nonsence, in fact.

Moreover, Shia and Sunni have lived amongst each other, largely, in peace during that 1400 years. Prior to the illegal invasion of Iraq in 2003, most suburbs of Baghdad were mixed and a significant proportion of families shared a dual Shia + Sunni tradition.


Rj H 13 Aug 2015 10:42

There are some good and bad points to all this as demonstrated on this comments thread. There seems to be no real consensus and blame is shifted from one side to the other (whether political, social, class or economic). The only thing we (indigenous population) might all agree upon is; upon stepping back and looking at the current state of the UK (formally Great Britain) most of us will come to the conclusion that something has gone wrong and the country and the UK is not enjoying good health. That fact alone should demonstrate that those in charge are not doing their jobs properly. Poor leadership across 40 years has damaged this country. A country that once governed FOR its people now governs contrary to the majority of its people's wishes. Those at the top are not capable (or indeed willing) to look out for those at the bottom. We as a population are being hit and abused by a government that cares only for the wealth and power of a select few. Never have so many been owed so much by so few. The government has reduced the people's voice to a hoarse whisper. We need to regain our voice and SHOUT back that we won't stand for this situation any longer.


blueanchor rentierDEATHcult 13 Aug 2015 10:36

"How is Islam responsible ...?".

Aren't the battlelines across swathes of Islam's heartland in the Middle-East drawn up broadly on Sunni v Shia lines? For instance I don't think you'll find any Shia joining Isis. What you have now is an eruption of the Islamic sectarian dispute which has been running on and off for 1,400 years, and people are fleeing to escape it.


musolen David Hicks 13 Aug 2015 10:35

No, you're right, of course we don't, that's the point.

One sided trade deals are negotiated with massive distortion favouring the big multinational corporations but listen to the IMF and all you hear is we have to 'open up our markets to enable free trade'.

The US has more trade embargoes in place than any other nation and EU is close behind and the irony doesn't even register on the faces at IMF and World Bank trampling the world spreading their Neo-Liberal rubbish.

My point was that to have capitalism, if you are an advocate of capitalism you have to accept those free movements of goods, money and people.

Paul Torgerson Rob99 13 Aug 2015 10:35

Well at least there is one person on here who has not swallowed the right wing xenophobic crap. But the right wing press is doing a great job of brain washing the populace. Examining the facts indicates a humanitarian problem that will not in any way disadvantage Europe even if they allow ALL these people to settle in Europe


wasson Bicbiro 13 Aug 2015 10:34

So you think if the UK minimum wage was lower than Poland they'd still come? I'm afraid I'm going to have to to disagree with you there bic. They come because they can earn in a week what they earn in 3 months in Poland. Simple as.


rentierDEATHcult sludge 13 Aug 2015 10:32

If you know anything about Lawrence of Arabia (since you brought him up), you would know that the British were collaborating against the Ottomans by inciting Arab tribes to revolt against them.

The Ottoman state was seen as an Islamist bulwark against European colonialism, especially, British imperialism.

So i'm not sure why you think the British would have undermined the Saudis and handed territories they had seized back to the Ottoman Turks - against whom the British were collaborating - (using the Saudis) !?

You need to understand and embrace this part of recent British history. Because anyone that doesn't understand (or acknowledge) their history is not to be trusted with the present.


bugiolacchi dragonpiwo 13 Aug 2015 10:28

UK is not part of Shengen. Non-EU migrants who work, live, travel freely, and prosper in the rest of Europe need a visa to cross the few miles of water between us and the continent.

As per the ID cards, every time they interview an 'illegal' immigrant, one of the reasons given for coming here is that it is the only country (in the world?) where one does no need to identify themselves when asked (a 'utility bill' my socks...) and can drive without a driving licence or car documentations with them, but to 'present' them later. A Christmas invitation if one wants to 'blend' in the background'. Again, a 'utility bill' as an idea.. hilarious!


rentierDEATHcult sludge 13 Aug 2015 10:19

The 'Gazzeteer of the Persian Gulf, Oman & Central Arabia' authored by John Gordon Lorimer has now been declassified by the British government and provides significant insight into the relationship between Abdulaziz al Saud and the British colonial authorities.

The memoirs of HRP Dickson in his 1951 book "Kuwait and Her Neighbours" provides further details on how Britain supported the rise of the Saudi monarchy as de facto colonial agents of Pax Britannica.

Dickson was British envoy to the Gulf emirates and an aide to British High Commissioner for Iraq - Sir Percy Cox

Dickson recounts this exchange between Sir Percy and Abdelaziz al Saud during the conference in al-Aqeer in November 1922:

The sultan of Najd, Abdelaziz al-Saud bowed his head before the British High Commissioner in Percy Cox's Iraq. His voice quavered, and then he started begging with humiliation: "Your grace are my father and you are my mother. I can never forget the debt I owe you. You made me and you held my hand, you elevated me and lifted me. I am prepared, at your beckoning, to give up for you now half of my kingdom…no, by Allah, I will give up all of my kingdom, if your grace commands me!"

[Aug 01, 2015] Ron Paul: All Wars Are Paid For Through Debasing The Currency

Zero Hedge
Submitted by Mac Slavo via SHTFPlan.com,

And at some point, all empires crumble on their own excess, stretched to the breaking point by over-extending a military industrial complex with sophisticated equipment, hundreds of bases in as many countries, and never-ending wars that wrack up mind boggling levels of debt. This cost has been magnified by the relationship it shares with the money system, who have common owners and shareholders behind the scenes.

As the hidden costs of war and the enormity of the black budget swell to record levels, the true total of its price comes in the form of the distortion it has caused in other dimensions of life; the numbers have been so thoroughly fudged for so long now, as Wall Street banks offset laundering activities and indulge in derivatives and quasi-official market rigging, the Federal Reserve policy holds the noble lie together.

Ron Paul told RT

Seen from the proper angle, the dollar is revealed to be a paper thin instrument of warfare, a ripple effect on the people, a twisted illusion, a weaponized money now engaged in a covert economic warfare that threatens their very livelihood.

The former Congressman and presidential candidate explained:

Almost all wars have been paid for through inflation… the practice always ends badly as currency becomes debased leading to upward pressure on prices.

"Almost all wars, in a hundred years or so, have been paid for through inflation, that is debasing the currency," he said, adding that this has been going on "for hundreds, if not thousands of years."

"I don't know if we ever had a war paid though tax payers. The only thing where they must have been literally paid for, was when they depended on the looting. They would go in and take over a country, and they would loot and take their gold, and they would pay for the war."

As inflation has debased the currency, other shady Wall Street tactics have driven Americans into a corner, overwhelmed with debt, and gamed by rigged markets in which Americans must make a living. The economic prosperity, adjusted for the kind of reality that doesn't factor into government reports, can't match the costs of a military industrial complex that has transformed society into a domestic police state, and slapped Americans with the bill for their own enslavement.

Dr. Paul notes the mutual interest in keeping the lie going for as long as the public can stand it… and as long as the gravy keeps rolling in:

They're going to continue to finance all these warmongering, and letting the military industrial complex to make a lot of money, before it's admitted that it doesn't work, and the whole system comes down because of the debt burden, which would be unsustainable."

Unsustainable might be putting it lightly. The entire thing is in shambles from the second the coyote looks down and sees that he's run out over a cliff.

[Jul 20, 2015] The Dangerously Vague Romance of War by Shane Smith

July 20, 2015 | original.antiwar.com
Which sounds better, to "die for your government", or "give your life for your country"? The first could be interpreted, after a mountain of bodies pile up, as a mistake. As something that would seem to require scrutiny, admissions of having been wrong, of blame to be placed. Dying for a government, or more precisely, dying for a select group of political figures at a certain moment in time for very specific reasons, doesn't hide behind a fluttering flag quite as well as "dying for country". Which is why we never hear it. War, in the mind of the Middle America that still thinks on it, is shrouded in a sepia-toned composite of images and sounds, stories of soldiers, duty to country, service, songs, movies, and myth that give politicians far more leverage than they would otherwise have, when executing another war. No, "service to country" is the emotional and moral narcotic we administer to ourselves, almost automatically, at the inception of a new war. War is all wrapped up in our American Mythos so tight that it seems astonishing that we haven't descended utterly into a pure American-style fascism. Maybe a few more 9/11-style attacks and the transformation would be complete. 9/11 was an unparalleled opportunity for the explosion of government growth, and as much as "war is the health of the State", so are foreign attacks on the home State, attacks that can be perfectly molded so as to stoke the maximum amount of nationalist rage from the citizens. Those attacks were a godsend for a government that had been starved of an actual threat for far too long. And they took full advantage of the opportunity. Fourteen years later, the Warfare State is petering out from the evaporating fumes of 9/11, and their looking for a new fix.

But what of those who lied the country into igniting a regional dumpster fire after 9/11? Once the war hysteria evaporates, where are What would it really take to hold any one politician for a military disaster halfway around the world? It is blindingly obvious that there will never be a reckoning for those who hustled us into the Iraq war. What about Libya? Syria? How bad does it have to get for there to be something resembling accountability? War atrocities seem to have become less of a chance for justice and lessons learned than as a new precedent that the progenitors of the next war can point to when their war goes bad. And creators of war did learn a few things from Iraq and Afghanistan. They learned that flag-draped coffins do focus the attention of the citizenry. And drone strikes don't, really.

That hazy collage of feel-good nationalism is trotted out every election year, and every candidate engages in it to one degree or another. Peace is a hard sell next to the belligerent effusions of a Donald Trump. His crazed rantings against immigrants, his bizarre fantasies as to how he would handle world leaders via telephone call, as well as his boorishness in general, has thousands flocking to hear him speak. But what they're cheering is an avatar of a blood-soaked ideology, one that cloaks itself in the native symbols and culture, breeding hate and intolerance, until the bilious nationalism reaches just the right temperature and then boils over into lawless fascism. As Jeffrey Tucker points out, Trump is nothing new. The graveyard of twentieth century tyrannies is a testament to just how much death and destruction can be induced by a charismatic parasite bellowing the tenets of a flag-wrapped tyranny. Most of what we hear coming from leaders today is fascism to a greater or lesser extent. If what we mean by fascism to be a Religion of the State, a militant nationalism taken to its logical conclusion, then every leader engages in it, because it ignites something primitive and sinister in the minds of voters.

We understand war theoretically, and distantly, but what of those who are forced to carry out the fever dreams of politicians? Blindly thanking veterans for their service, we feel a sense of duty discharged, and never think to look more deeply into their traumas, or the scheme they were tricked into executing. Military recruiters, the unscrupulous peddlers of military slavery, are treated as a benign influence on young people today. Their pushy, overindulgent attitude toward our 18-year olds should piss us off more than it does, since what they are conning the young into is becoming the expendable plaything for the whims of the current Administration.

War is the pith of total government. The source of all its power, war and the threat of war provide the excuse for every injustice, every outrage, every restriction of liberty or further bilking of the citizen-hosts. As the Warfare State trots out the familiar sermons of threats from abroad, potential greatness at home, and wars to be fought, one would do well to reflect that war enriches the State at the expense of the rest of us. It consumes our lives, our liberty, our wallets, and the future of our children and grandchildren. The current crop of candidates who peddle military greatness are the enemy of peace and prosperity, and when they so openly declaim their lust for war, we should frankly believe what they say. And after hearing them, we should recognize the would-be tyrant in our midst, hawking hyper-militarism under the guise of national greatness, and treat them like the vermin they clearly are.

Shane Smith lives in Norman, Oklahoma and writes for Red Dirt Report.

Read more by Shane Smith

[Jul 09, 2015] Ukraine Merges Nazis and Islamists

July 7, 2015 | Consortiumnews

Exclusive: Ukraine's post-coup regime is now melding neo-Nazi storm troopers with Islamic militants – called "brothers" of the hyper-violent Islamic State – stirring up a hellish "death squad" brew to kill ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine, on Russia's border, reports Robert Parry.

In a curiously upbeat account, The New York Times reports that Islamic militants have joined with Ukraine's far-right and neo-Nazi battalions to fight ethnic Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine. It appears that no combination of violent extremists is too wretched to celebrate as long as they're killing Russ-kies.

The article by Andrew E. Kramer reports that there are now three Islamic battalions "deployed to the hottest zones," such as around the port city of Mariupol. One of the battalions is headed by a former Chechen warlord who goes by the name "Muslim," Kramer wrote, adding:

"The Chechen commands the Sheikh Mansur group, named for an 18th-century Chechen resistance figure. It is subordinate to the nationalist Right Sector, a Ukrainian militia. … Right Sector … formed during last year's street protests in Kiev from a half-dozen fringe Ukrainian nationalist groups like White Hammer and the Trident of Stepan Bandera.

"Another, the Azov group, is openly neo-Nazi, using the 'Wolf's Hook' symbol associated with the [Nazi] SS. Without addressing the issue of the Nazi symbol, the Chechen said he got along well with the nationalists because, like him, they loved their homeland and hated the Russians."

As casually as Kramer acknowledges the key front-line role of neo-Nazis and white supremacists fighting for the U.S.-backed Kiev regime, his article does mark an aberration for the Times and the rest of the mainstream U.S. news media, which usually dismiss any mention of this Nazi taint as "Russian propaganda."

During the February 2014 coup that ousted elected President Viktor Yanukovych, the late fascist Stepan Bandera was one of the Ukrainian icons celebrated by the Maidan protesters. During World War II, Bandera headed the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists-B, a radical paramilitary movement that sought to transform Ukraine into a racially pure state. At times coordinating with Adolf Hitler's SS, OUN-B took part in the expulsion and extermination of tens of thousands of Jews and Poles.

Though most of the Maidan protesters in 2013-14 appeared motivated by anger over political corruption and by a desire to join the European Union, neo-Nazis made up a significant number and spearheaded much of the violence against the police. Storm troopers from the Right Sektor and Svoboda party seized government buildings and decked them out with Nazi insignias and a Confederate battle flag, the universal symbol of white supremacy.

Then, as the protests turned bloodier from Feb. 20-22, the neo-Nazis surged to the forefront. Their well-trained militias, organized in 100-man brigades called "sotins" or "the hundreds," led the final assaults against police and forced Yanukovych and many of his officials to flee for their lives.

In the days after the coup, as the neo-Nazi militias effectively controlled the government, European and U.S. diplomats scrambled to help the shaken parliament put together the semblance of a respectable regime, although four ministries, including national security, were awarded to the right-wing extremists in recognition of their crucial role in ousting Yanukovych.

At that point, virtually the entire U.S. news media put on blinders about the neo-Nazi role, all the better to sell the coup to the American public as an inspirational story of reform-minded "freedom fighters" standing up to "Russian aggression." The U.S. media delicately stepped around the neo-Nazi reality by keeping out relevant context, such as the background of national security chief Andriy Parubiy, who founded the Social-National Party of Ukraine in 1991, blending radical Ukrainian nationalism with neo-Nazi symbols. Parubiy was commandant of the Maidan's "self-defense forces."

Barbarians at the Gate

At times, the mainstream media's black-out of the brown shirts was almost comical. Last February, almost a year after the coup, a New York Times article about the government's defenders of Mariupol hailed the crucial role played by the Azov battalion but managed to avoid noting its well-documented Nazi connections.

That article by Rick Lyman presented the situation in Mariupol as if the advance by ethnic Russian rebels amounted to the barbarians at the gate while the inhabitants were being bravely defended by the forces of civilization, the Azov battalion. In such an inspirational context, it presumably wasn't considered appropriate to mention the Swastikas and SS markings.

Now, the Kiev regime has added to those "forces of civilization" - resisting the Russkie barbarians - Islamic militants with ties to terrorism. Last September, Marcin Mamon, a reporter for the Intercept, reached a vanguard group of these Islamic fighters in Ukraine through the help of his "contact in Turkey with the Islamic State [who] had told me his 'brothers' were in Ukraine, and I could trust them."

The new Times article avoids delving into the terrorist connections of these Islamist fighters. But Kramer does bluntly acknowledge the Nazi truth about the Azov fighters. He also notes that American military advisers in Ukraine "are specifically prohibited from giving instruction to members of the Azov group."

While the U.S. advisers are under orders to keep their distance from the neo-Nazis, the Kiev regime is quite open about its approval of the central military role played by these extremists – whether neo-Nazis, white supremacists or Islamic militants. These extremists are considered very aggressive and effective in killing ethnic Russians.

The regime has shown little concern about widespread reports of "death squad" operations targeting suspected pro-Russian sympathizers in government-controlled towns. But such human rights violations should come as no surprise given the Nazi heritage of these units and the connection of the Islamic militants to hyper-violent terrorist movements in the Middle East.

But the Times treats this lethal mixture of neo-Nazis and Islamic extremists as a good thing. After all, they are targeting opponents of the "white-hatted" Kiev regime, while the ethnic Russian rebels and the Russian government wear the "black hats."

As an example of that tone, Kramer wrote:

"Even for Ukrainians hardened by more than a year of war here against Russian-backed separatists, the appearance of Islamic combatants, mostly Chechens, in towns near the front lines comes as something of a surprise - and for many of the Ukrainians, a welcome one. … Anticipating an attack in the coming months, the Ukrainians are happy for all the help they can get."

So, the underlying message seems to be that it's time for the American people and the European public to step up their financial and military support for a Ukrainian regime that has unleashed on ethnic Russians a combined force of Nazis, white supremacists and Islamic militants (considered "brothers" of the Islamic State).

[For more on the Azov battalion, see Consortiumnews.com's "US House Admits Nazi Role in Ukraine."]

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). You also can order Robert Parry's trilogy on the Bush Family and its connections to various right-wing operatives for only $34. The trilogy includes America's Stolen Narrative. For details on this offer, click here.

[Jul 05, 2015] Patriotism Begins With Localism

Jul 05, 2015 | The American Conservative

Responses to Patriotism Begins With Localism


Apolitical, July 3, 2015 at 9:50 am

Dulce et decorum est … to stop believing the "old lie" that appears so promiscuously on Union and Confederate war memorials. If men on all sides always die for country, who puts them up to it?

JonF, July 3, 2015 at 10:44 am

Re: But it is also, crucially, a matter of shared bloodlines, language, history, literature, and cuisine, things that originated long before the time of Rousseau and Voltaire.

At yet France is a glued-together-at-the-seams country too. The whole South of France once spoke a different language, in which the troubadours sang, and which still survives in the local dialects of the inhabitants. Burgundy was once a sovereign and very wealthy duchy whose duke controlled almost the entire Rhineland all the way to the Netherlands. Brittany too was its own nation, albeit torn between France and England. And the English ruled Gascony for 300 years, and were preferred as rulers to the Valois kings so that the Gascons promptly revolted when the French took the land back. The Pope ruled (and for a time dwelt) in Avignon. The Provence was a county of the Holy Roman Empire. Louis XIV knit these disparate lands together by corralling their nobility into velvet captivity at Versailles. The Revolutionaries added an ideology and a national anthem (and spilled the blood of the dissenters) and Napoleon gave the mix a mythology of glory. But the seams are still there under the surface. And indeed, you can find similar fissures in many other European countries too.

Connecticut Farmer, July 3, 2015 at 10:47 am

The concept of a country linked together by a common set of laws was never intended by our revered Founders to be anything more or less than an experiment. An experiment that had never been tried before. Arguably the United States Constitution that was drafted during the height of the Enlightenment and, together with the America's so-called "birth certificate", Jefferson's Declaration, may be considered that era's greatest accomplishment…a little Locke here, a dash of Montesquieu there and…Voila! In that respect "United" States are in no way "united", in the strictest sense of the word, except through the Constitution. And I suspect that is about all the Founders could have hoped for. From the beginning America was– and remains– a culturally Balkanized and, now more than ever, polyglot landmass more reminiscent of pre-World War One Austria-Hungary.

The late Speaker of The House, Tip O'Neill-a Boston Irishman I might add–is reputed to have once said "All politics is local." He got it half right. What he should have said is "All LOYALTY is local". I am also reminded of a line in The Godfather when Sonny Cordleone says to his brother Fredo "Your country ain't your blood".

Patriotism indeed begins on the local level, whether geographical, cultural, familial–or some combination thereof. The author is spot-on.

Gregory, July 3, 2015 at 8:28 pm

That line in Wilfred Owen's poem is supposed to be ironic…

TB, July 3, 2015 at 9:08 pm

"Patriotism Begins With Localism"
_________

I think the last refuge of the scoundrel begins with tribalism fear which, is the cultural anthropologist's way of saying "localism".

Fran Macadam, July 3, 2015 at 11:57 pm

Well written, but full of unexamined assumptions that are more comforting myth than truth.

Like the girls who didn't stay thin, exactly.

"I'd wager that all of us on the roof that night were grateful to live in a place where we can vote, start a business, and express ourselves freely, and grateful towards the ungodly number of young men shot and shredded and killed in our name."

Yet voting's never meant less as policies are completely untethered from public opinion, except as it can be manufactured through what crony capitalism calls PR, more honest oligarchies call propaganda. And participation in voting is a minority activity, meaning real democracy's already given the process a vote of no confidence.

We can express ourselves freely, if we're not among those with proscribed views, but those in charge aren't interested in what we have to say. The main corporate media, the gateways through which most people get their filtered news, prints all the news that fits their status quo interests. No genuinely alternative political opinions that challenge the duopoly establishment are able to be considered, though the corporate donorist class has no solutions to the ill which ail us, except for mendacity. Certainly there have been an ungodly number of young men killed in our name, and an even more ungodly number of foreign civilians of all ages and sexes whom they have killed, also in our name. But truth be told, our name being invoked was our only connection to the purpose of the wars, which wasn't for our interests at all; none of the foreign wars of choice have secured our liberties, only debased them – and violated those of others. Far from making us secure, our very democracy has been endangered by their unaccountable and unconstitutional means, perhaps fatally. Perhaps only the young now can be so deceived, without experience, with heavy student debt focusing their thoughts on more immediate personal concerns, with their docile, untenured instructors carrying their own debt loads, unwilling to intellectually challenge the status quo.

What business will you be grateful to start? In the post-industrial economic desert of America that the donorist elites leveled to keep more of business' rewards for themselves, it's unlikely to be able to provide the stable, well-paying work that manufacturing used to.

I suggest getting another advisor and thesis.

Suggested topic:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inverted_totalitarianism

JEinCA, July 4, 2015 at 3:16 am

I think Pat Buchanan said it best. We're no longer a nation in any traditional sense of the word. We are an economy. The best definition of a nation would be Michael Savage's definition of borders, language and culture but more important than all of this would be religion. Unless a nation has a commonly shared faith it can never truly be one. The Russians know this and that is why the Kremlin has thrown its support behind the Russian Orthodox Church. The West used to know this and that is why Europe was up until this last century identifiably Christian civilization with the biggest differances largely arising from the Catholic-Protestant divide.

For awhile America reflected Christian Europe but now we reflect Babylon and our elites are largely cynical atheists who look down on people of faith. Such a house could have never withstood a Great Depression let alone a Soviet style collapse.

[Jul 04, 2015]The New Ukrainian Exceptionalism

"...Russian-backed aggression, relentless propaganda and meddling in Ukraine's domestic politics have pushed many Ukrainians to adopt a deeply polarized worldview, in which constructive criticism, dissenting views, and even observable facts are rejected out of hand if they are seen as harmful to Ukraine. This phenomenon might be termed the new Ukrainian exceptionalism, and it is worrisome because it threatens the very democratic values Ukrainians espouse, while weakening Ukraine's case for international support."
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"...The same goes for the country's far right political forces. Cite the rise of Praviy Sektor, or Right Sector, during and after the Euro-Maidan, and many Ukrainians will point to the radical right movement's poor performance in last year's presidential and parliamentary elections. Point to the resurgence of symbols and slogans of the Second World War ultra-nationalist Union of Ukrainian Nationalists, OUN, or the newly passed laws banning "Soviet symbols," canonizing controversial Ukrainian nationalist figures Stepan Bandera and Roman Shukhevych, and they will say that Ukraine has every right to define its own history, even if it does so with blatant disregard and disrespect for that of millions of its citizens now living under Russian occupation or otherwise not fully represented in the government. The new Ukrainian exceptionalism makes it possible for undercurrents of intolerance and extreme nationalism to cohabit with stated commitments to pluralism and democracy."
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"...These steps set a dangerous precedent for limitation of human rights without wide public discussion. Exceptionalism effectively gives carte-blanche to the government to act in the name of Ukraine's security"
June 23, 2015 | yaleglobal.yale.edu

Ukrainian leaders, under siege from Russian and separatist forces, resist constructive criticism

Russia on the dock, Ukraine not without blemish: Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko, left, walks past Russian President Vladimir Putin during an international gathering (top); bellicose Ukrainian Semen Semenchenko grandstanding

WASHINGTON: The slow boiling war in Southeastern Ukraine is by now well known to the world. It has been projected in stark moral and political terms and in gruesome detail by the international press, Ukrainian and Western political leaders, and ordinary Ukrainian citizens. Indeed, it is no exaggeration to say that Ukraine is engaged in a struggle not only for its sovereignty, but for its very survival as a nation-state.

In this hour of need, every Ukrainian citizen and every self-described friend of Ukraine in the international community should not only speak but act in support of Ukraine. But speaking out and taking action in support of Ukraine have become increasingly fraught in recent months. Russian-backed aggression, relentless propaganda and meddling in Ukraine's domestic politics have pushed many Ukrainians to adopt a deeply polarized worldview, in which constructive criticism, dissenting views, and even observable facts are rejected out of hand if they are seen as harmful to Ukraine. This phenomenon might be termed the new Ukrainian exceptionalism, and it is worrisome because it threatens the very democratic values Ukrainians espouse, while weakening Ukraine's case for international support.

The new Ukrainian exceptionalism comes at a high price for Ukrainian civil society and for the international community focused on helping Ukraine. There have already been cases in which prominent Ukrainian thought leaders have been threatened and even attacked for expressing views critical of the government, nationalist politicians, or volunteer militias. Likewise, among Ukraine's friends abroad there is precious little tolerance for views that dissent from the dominant party line that Ukraine's current government is the best it has ever had, and that the West must provide not only political and financial support, but also supply it with lethal weapons to fight the Russians in Donbas.

There is little tolerance for views that dissent from the dominant party line in Ukraine.

This exceptionalist worldview is nowhere more evident than in the discourse around Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko. Poroshenko is a billionaire confectionary baron who also owns banking and agricultural assets, and several influential media platforms, most notably Ukraine's Fifth Channel, and who served in high government posts, including as Yanukovych's minister of economic development and minister of foreign affairs under Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko. Today, Poroshenko presides over a state and a government that has committed to a reform campaign it styles as "de-oligrachization."

Yet when queried about whether, as an oligarch himself, Poroshenko can be effective in removing oligarchic influence from Ukraine's politics and economy, many Ukrainians feel compelled to defend their wartime leader by denying that he is, in fact, an oligarch in the first place. Or if he is one, they say, he's a different kind of oligarch, certainly the best of the bunch. After all, they reason, he has used his wealth and influence to help Ukraine and fight Russia, and anyway, his business interests are more transparent and of more value to the country than those of his rivals. Instead of selling his businesses, as he promised to do during last year's presidential campaign, Poroshenko has held onto them, demonstrating that even in the new Ukraine, politics and the private sector remain inseparable.

Exceptionalists argue: While oligarchy in general might be bad, Ukraine's patriotic oligarchs are not.

The exceptionalism does not stop with Poroshenko. In fact, the same tortured logic extends to support for other "good" oligarchs: Lviv's mayor Andriy Sadovyi, who has run that city for nearly a decade, owns major media, electrical utility and financial assets, and has backed his own party in the national parliament, is described as having made Lviv a "lighthouse" for Ukrainian reform, on the model of neighboring Poland. Even Dnipropetrovsk's Ihor Kolomoiskiy, who himself embraces the oligarch moniker, has spent millions in defense of Ukraine against Russian aggression, served as governor of a vulnerable frontline region and held it together, and besides, his Privat Bank group is a pillar of Ukraine's financial stability. So, while oligarchy in general might be bad, Ukraine's most patriotic oligarchs, the exceptionalists argue, are not.

The same goes for the country's far right political forces. Cite the rise of Praviy Sektor, or Right Sector, during and after the Euro-Maidan, and many Ukrainians will point to the radical right movement's poor performance in last year's presidential and parliamentary elections. Point to the resurgence of symbols and slogans of the Second World War ultra-nationalist Union of Ukrainian Nationalists, OUN, or the newly passed laws banning "Soviet symbols," canonizing controversial Ukrainian nationalist figures Stepan Bandera and Roman Shukhevych, and they will say that Ukraine has every right to define its own history, even if it does so with blatant disregard and disrespect for that of millions of its citizens now living under Russian occupation or otherwise not fully represented in the government. The new Ukrainian exceptionalism makes it possible for undercurrents of intolerance and extreme nationalism to cohabit with stated commitments to pluralism and democracy.

New Ukrainian exceptionalism: Undercurrents of intolerance cohabit with commitments to democracy.

The Euro-Maidan was dubbed a Revolution of Dignity because it represented the victory of the people in defense of basic human rights and human dignity. But a year after that victory, the parliament has approved a decree limiting Ukraine's obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. So far, the decree applies only to portions of the two oblasts, or regions, of Donetsk and Luhansk where the war is going on, but it has been accompanied by allegations of torture and unlawful detention by Ukrainian authorities. These steps set a dangerous precedent for limitation of human rights without wide public discussion. Exceptionalism effectively gives carte-blanche to the government to act in the name of Ukraine's security, while it fragments and diminishes the human rights activist community that was once a bulwark of the new Ukraine.

Finally, raise the problem of private armies in Ukraine, and one is told that the famous "volunteer battalions" are actually completely legal and legitimate police, interior ministry or army units that have been integrated under a single, responsible national command. This would be a reasonable position and an extremely important step to constrain possible future internecine violence, corporate raiding and other abuses in Ukraine, if only it were true.

The same goes for so-called soldier deputies, commanders of the volunteer battalions elected to the parliament last October, many of whom still appear in uniform and demonstrate scant regard for the boundaries between civilian and military authority. Dashing but bellicose figures like Serhii Melnychuk, Semen Semenchenko and Dmytro Yarosh, we are told, are not really soldiers any more, their grandstanding is just a PR exercise. Maybe so, but their message hardly confirms Ukraine's commitment to rule of law, civilian control of the military, and national reconciliation. With prominent exceptions like these in the new Ukraine, it is increasingly difficult to identify the rule.

Without a doubt, Ukraine now faces its most severe crisis of the post-1991 period. In the face of attacks by Russia and its separatist allies, Ukraine deserves the support of its citizens and the wider world. Yet the enthusiasm of the world to help Ukraine will be diminished and the damage from Russian aggression magnified if Ukrainians succumb to the kind of exceptionalism described above. Instead, Ukrainians should seek to preserve what have actually been their most exceptional characteristics – a rare and genuine commitment to pluralism, civic freedom, and human dignity that make Ukraine a cause worth fighting for.

Matthew Rojansky is director of the Kennan Institute at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, DC; Mykhailo Minakov is associate professor/docent in philosophy and religious studies at the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, and was a Fulbright-Kennan Scholar in 2012-13.

Selected Skeptical Comments

Western Educated Russian, my 5 cents, 28 June 2015

That is not today Ukrainians decided to find a way to differentiate themselves from Russians. That is the way how ethnic genesis works. So in the situation when multinational state (USSR) collapsed, Ukrainian national elites became interested in doing so even more. What could be a difference to strong order of Moscow, the answer is illusory freedom.

Consequentially, Ukrainian mass media and even academic sources such as Yale draw a picture of Russia as a place where there is a fallout of human rights, corruption, and democracy and at the same time whitening Ukrainian far right guys as a fighters against "double evil" of communists and fascists.

The reality of course is different. Russia is just a powerful player that is emerged after collapse of Soviet Union while Ukraine failed to do so. Russians respect Ukrainians and Ukrainian language, and what is more important overall have more freedoms that even Westerns do. The only thing Russians care about is comparative advantage. Ukrainian politics is irresponsible, and thus destabilize the whole region of Eastern Europe and former Soviet Union.

It is actually not so funny because the US thinks about itself as a warrant of stability. In reality stability of many Eurasian territories in the hands of Russia. We should not forget civil war in Tadjikistan, war between Georgia and Ossetia, Armenia and Azerbaidjan. All those conflicts were stopped because of Russia's actions. If Ukraine won (= lose anyway), there will be hundreds of different uncontrolled conflicts, economic downfall and millions of additional immigrants to Europe.

Whether Europeans like it or not, it is better to have strong Russia with good relationship that can guarantee stability over many territories than one more Africa with nuclear weapon on the backyard and Greece (sorry Ukraine).

Jim Kovpak , OUN, 28 June 2015

The OUN thing pisses me off when they say Ukraine has the right to define its own heroes- excuse me, but when did these "heroes" represent Ukraine? The OUN and UPA never attracted more than a fraction of Ukrainians even in the region where it was most popular, and even then many people were conscripted into its ranks. Later, many of them deserted in droves, including a large number who switched to the Soviet side.

But it is not simply to appease the population in the East that these organizations should be condemned. They have a clear connection to the Holocaust via the role the OUN-B played in organizing the militia and Ukrainian police who took part in pogroms that killed thousands of Jews. Many of those police personnel then ended up in the ranks of the UPA. Add to that the ethnic cleansing of Poles and you see why these thugs, which DO NOT represent Ukraine, don't deserve to be called heroes.

Eastern Ukrainians are always told they need to give up the past, so why can't these other people give up that past, which in most cases doesn't have anything to do with them?

Of course many Ukrainians I talk to swear up and down that Bandera and the OUN aren't really so popular in post-Maidan Ukraine -- okay then, watch what happens when someone says people ought not to fly the flags and there shouldn't be memorials to the OUN and UPA. Suddenly the Bandera-cultists emerge from the woodwork, enraged. It's a lot like defenders of the Confederate flag in the US.

[Jun 20, 2015]Charleston and the National-Security State

"...Why should Americans have their pretty little heads bothered with such unpleasantries? Just leave "national security" to us, U.S. officials say, and we'll do whatever is necessary to "keep you safe" from all those scary creatures out there who want to come and get you and take you away. Oh, and be sure to keep all those trillions of U.S. taxpayer dollars flooding into our "defense" coffers."
Jun 19, 2015 | The Future of Freedom Foundation

... Ever since 9/11, the American people have operated under the quaint notion that all the violence that the Pentagon and the CIA have been inflicting on people in foreign nations has an adverse effect only over there. The idea has been that as long as all the death, torture, assassinations, bombings, shootings, and mayhem were in places like Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, and elsewhere, Americans could go pleasantly on with their lives, going to work, church, and fun sporting events where everyone could praise and pray for the troops for "defending our freedoms" and "keeping us safe."

Through it all, the national-security state, with the cooperation of the mainstream media, has done its best to immunize Americans from all the violence, death, and mayhem that they've been wreaking on people over there.

Anything and everything to keep the American people from having to confront, assimilate, and process the ongoing culture of violence that the national-security state has brought to people in other parts of the world.

Why should Americans have their pretty little heads bothered with such unpleasantries? Just leave "national security" to us, U.S. officials say, and we'll do whatever is necessary to "keep you safe" from all those scary creatures out there who want to come and get you and take you away. Oh, and be sure to keep all those trillions of U.S. taxpayer dollars flooding into our "defense" coffers.

As an aside, have you ever noticed that Switzerland, which is one of the most armed societies in the world, is not besieged by a "war on terrorism" and by gun massacres? I wonder if it has anything to do with the fact that the Swiss government isn't involved in an ongoing crusade to violently remake the world in its image.

Ask any American whether all that death and destruction at the hands of the military and the CIA is necessary, and he's likely to say, "Well, of course it is. People all over the world hate us for our freedom and values. We've got to kill them over there before they come over here to kill us. The war on terrorism goes on forever. I'm a patriot! Praise the troops!"

The thought that the entire scheme of ongoing violence is just one great big racket just doesn't even occur to them. That's what a mindset of deference to authority does to people.

All that ongoing violence that has formed the foundation of America's governmental structure since the totalitarian structure known as the national-security state came into existence after World War II is at the core of the national sickness to which Rand Paul alludes.

And so is the extreme deference to authority paid to the national-security establishment by all too many Americans who have converted the Pentagon and the CIA into their god - one who can do no wrong as it stomps around the world killing, torturing, bombing, shooting, invading, maiming, and occupying, all in the name of "national security," a ridiculous term if there ever was one, a term not even found in the U.S. Constitution.

As I have long written, the national-security establishment has warped and perverted the values, morals, and principles of the American people. This totalitarian structure that was grafted onto our governmental system after World War II to oppose America's World War II partner and ally the Soviet Union has stultified the consciences of the American people, causing them to subordinate themselves to the will and judgment of the military (including the NSA) and the CIA and, of course, to surrender their fundamental God-given rights to liberty and privacy in the quest to be "kept safe" from whoever happens to be the official enemy of the day.

The discomforting fact is that the American people have not been spared the horrific consequences of the ongoing culture of violence that the U.S. national-security establishment has brought to foreign lands. The ongoing culture of violence that forms the foundation of the national security state - killing untold numbers of people on a perpetual basis - has been a rotting and corrosive cancer that has been destroying America from within and that continues to do so.

It's that ongoing culture of violence that brings out the crazies and the loonies, who see nothing wrong with killing people for no good reason at all. In ordinary societies, the crazies and the loonies usually just stay below the radar screen and live out their lives in a fairly abnormal but peaceful manner. But in dysfunctional societies, such as ones where the government is based on killing, torturing, maiming, and destroying people on a constant basis, the crazies and the loonies come onto the radar screen and commit their crazy and loony acts of violence.

... ... ...

[Jun 14, 2015] Bush and Hawkish Magical Thinking

Notable quotes:
"... t's usually not clear what hawks think would have discouraged Russian interference and intervention in Ukraine under the circumstances, but they seem to think that if only the U.S. had somehow been more assertive and more meddlesome there or in some other part of the world that the conflict would not have occurred or would not be as severe as it is. ..."
Jun 14, 2015 | The American Conservative
Jeb Bush made a familiar assertion during his visit to Poland:

Bush seemed to suggest he would endorse a more muscular foreign policy, saying the perception of American retreat from the global stage in recent years had emboldened Russian President Vladimir Putin to commit aggression in Ukraine.

"When there's doubt, when there's uncertainty, when we pull back, it creates less chance of a more peaceful world," Bush told reporters. "You're seeing the impact of that in Ukraine right now."

Bush's remarks are what we expect from hawks, but they are useful in showing how they indulge in a sort of magical thinking when it comes to the U.S. role in the world. They take for granted that an activist and meddlesome U.S. foreign policy is stabilizing and contributes to peace and security, and so whenever there is conflict or upheaval somewhere it is attributed to insufficient U.S. meddling or to so-called "retreat." According to this view, the conflict in Ukraine didn't happen because the Ukrainian government was overthrown in an uprising and Russia then illegally seized territory in response, but because the U.S. was perceived to be "retreating" and this "emboldened" Russia. It's usually not clear what hawks think would have discouraged Russian interference and intervention in Ukraine under the circumstances, but they seem to think that if only the U.S. had somehow been more assertive and more meddlesome there or in some other part of the world that the conflict would not have occurred or would not be as severe as it is.

This both greatly overrates the power and influence that the U.S. has over the events in other parts of the world, and it tries to reduce every foreign crisis or conflict to how it relates to others' perceptions of U.S. "leadership." Hawks always dismiss claims that other states are responding to past and present U.S. actions, but they are absolutely certain that other states' actions are invited by U.S. "inaction" or "retreat," even when the evidence for said "retreat" is completely lacking. The possibility that assertive U.S. actions may have made a conflict more likely or worse than it would otherwise be is simply never admitted. The idea that the U.S. role in the world had little or nothing to do with a conflict seems to be almost inconceivable to them.

One of the many flaws with this way of looking at the world is that it holds the U.S. most responsible for conflicts that it did not magically prevent while refusing to accept any responsibility for the consequences of things that the U.S. has actually done. Viewing the world this way inevitably fails to take local conditions into account, it ignores the agency of the local actors, and it imagines that the U.S. possesses a degree of control over the rest of the world that it doesn't and can't have. Unsurprisingly, this distorted view of the world reliably produces very poor policy choices.

[Jun 05, 2015]A story from the past shows why neocons are dangerous for the global peace and security

Jun 02, 2015 | the unbalanced evolution of homo sapiens

Nixon's and Kissinger's dangerous games in the Vietnam War – The Madman strategy

Recent documents show that the hardcore branch of the US policy during the Vietnam war, was playing dangerous games with North Vietnam and the Soviets, in order to drag the other side to negotiations.

We see today a similar game played by the neocons in Ukraine and Asia-Pacific. In the new Cold War, neocons are playing more dangerous games with Russia and China, as they try to persuade that they will not hesitate to proceed in a nuclear strike against both their rivals, because they see that the Sino-Russian bloc threatens the US global sovereignty.

From National Security Archive:

"Nixon's and Kissinger's Madman strategy during the Vietnam War included veiled nuclear threats intended to intimidate Hanoi and its patrons in Moscow. The story is recounted in a new book, Nixon's Nuclear Specter: The Secret Alert of 1969, Madman Diplomacy, and the Vietnam War, co-authored by Jeffrey Kimball, Miami University professor emeritus, and William Burr, who directs the Archive's Nuclear History Documentation Project. Research for the book, which uncovers the inside story of White House Vietnam policymaking during Nixon's first year in office, drew on hundreds of formerly top secret and secret records obtained by the authors as well as interviews with former government officials."

"With Madman diplomacy, Nixon and Kissinger strove to end the Vietnam War on the most favorable terms possible in the shortest period of time practicable, an effort that culminated in a secret global nuclear alert in October of that year. Nixon's Nuclear Specter provides the most comprehensive account to date of the origins, inception, policy context, and execution of 'JCS Readiness Test' -the equivalent of a worldwide nuclear alert that was intended to signal Washington's anger at Moscow's support of North Vietnam and to jar the Soviet leadership into using their leverage to induce Hanoi to make diplomatic concessions. Carried out between 13 and 30 October 1969, it involved military operations around the world, the continental United States, Western Europe, the Middle East, the Atlantic, Pacific, and the Sea of Japan. The operations included strategic bombers, tactical air, and a variety of naval operations, from movements of aircraft carriers and ballistic missile submarines to the shadowing of Soviet merchant ships heading toward Haiphong."

"The authors also recount secret military operations that were part of the lead-up to the global alert, including a top secret mining readiness test that took place during the spring and summer of 1969. This mining readiness test was a ruse intended to signal Hanoi that the US was preparing to mine Haiphong harbor and the coast of North Vietnam. It is revealed for the first time in this book."

"Another revelation has to do with the fabled DUCK HOOK operation, a plan for which was initially drafted in July 1969 as a mining-only operation. It soon evolved into a mining-and-bombing, shock-and-awe plan scheduled to be launched in early November, but which Nixon aborted in October, substituting the global nuclear alert in its place. The failure of Nixon's and Kissinger's 1969 Madman diplomacy marked a turning point in their initial exit strategy of winning a favorable armistice agreement by the end of the year 1969. Subsequently, they would follow a so-called long-route strategy of withdrawing U.S. troops while attempting to strengthen South Vietnam's armed forces, although not necessarily counting on Saigon's long-term survival."

"In 1969, the Nixon's administrations long-term goal was to provide President Nguyen Van Thieus government in Saigon with a decent chance of surviving for a reasonable interval of two to five years following the sought-after mutual exit of US and North Vietnamese forces from South Vietnam. They would have preferred that President Thieu and South Vietnam survive indefinitely, and they would do what they could to maintain South Vietnam as a separate political entity. But they were realistic enough to appreciate that such a goal was unlikely and beyond their power to achieve by a military victory on the ground or from the air in Vietnam."

"Giving Thieu a decent chance to survive, even for just a decent interval, however, rested primarily on persuading Hanoi to withdraw its troops from the South or, if that failed, prolonging the war in order to give time for Vietnamization to take hold in order to enable Thieu to fight the war on his own for a reasonable period of time after the US exited Indochina. In 1969, Nixon and Kissinger hoped that their Madman threat strategy, coupled with linkage diplomacy, could persuade Hanoi to agree to mutual withdrawal at the negotiating table or lever Moscows cooperation in persuading Hanoi to do so. In this respect, Nixon's Nuclear Specter is an attempt to contribute to better understanding of Nixon and Kissinger's Vietnam diplomacy as a whole."

http://nsarchive.gwu.edu/nukevault/ebb517-Nixon-Kissinger-and-the-Madman-Strategy-during-Vietnam-War/

These materials are reproduced from www.nsarchive.org with the permission of the National Security Archive.

[Jun 04, 2015] March of the Imperial Senators

"...His partner in this long-running routine, Sen. Lindsey Graham, also reminiscent of Dr. Strangelove's Mr. President, we must not allow a mineshaft gap!" "
.
"...It's a deadly fandango that places national security in the balance, while lawmakers play rhetorical games, often crossing, if not leaping, the usual boundaries of diplomatic propriety and control."
May 29, 2015 | http://www.theamericanconservative.com

John McCain and Lindsey Graham try to rewrite history to vindicate the Iraq war, and blame Obama for ISIS.

...McCain's widely known and tolerated flair for the dramatic now places an "episode" that most Americans could not rightly pin down, much less explain without the aid of Google, alongside slavery, the Trail of Tears, the federal crackdown on World War I-era Bonus Marchers, and the entire Vietnam War.

His partner in this long-running routine, Sen. Lindsey Graham, also reminiscent of Dr. Strangelove's Mr. President, we must not allow a mineshaft gap!", laid out the latest talking points in an interview about the ISIS takeover of Ramadi in Iraq this month:

It's a predictable outcome of withdrawing all forces back in 2011…The military advised [Obama] to leave 10,000 troops. When he refused to take their advice, everything you see before you is a result of that big mistake.

Graham, McCain, and their fellow Republican hawks, energized by an election over a year away, are once again using foreign policy overseas to bludgeon Obama, presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, and by extension, the whole Democratic Party in the arena of domestic politics here at home. It's a deadly fandango that places national security in the balance, while lawmakers play rhetorical games, often crossing, if not leaping, the usual boundaries of diplomatic propriety and control.

"Imperial senators, basically that's what they are … playing this real life version of Risk," said Matthew Hoh, an Iraq War veteran, referring to the strategy board game in an interview with TAC. Hoh was the highest U.S. official to resign in protest of the Afghanistan war policy when he quit his State Department post in 2009.

Hoh says playing "real life Risk" is all about deception, and in the case of Iraq, a larder of revisionist history, which, as McCain and Graham have demonstrated, involves an elaborate tweaking of the story of how the U.S. withdrew from Iraq in 2011, and why. It also requires the ambitious assumption that a) American forces had every right and opportunity to stay there indefinitely, and b) there would be no consequences if they did so

...Negotiations reportedly wore on until the eleventh hour, but finally broke down when Maliki could not promise criminal immunity for U.S. troops there. "Frankly, given that less than 20 percent of the Iraqi public wanted American troops to stay, and given the great resentment in the Iraqi population …there wasn't much sympathy to grant Americans full legal immunities in the Iraqi parliament," said former U.S. Ambassador to Iraq James Jeffrey in 2014. The withdrawal was complete in 2011.

Kelley Beaucar Vlahos is a Washington, D.C.-based freelance reporter and TAC contributing editor. Follow her on Twitter.

[May 28, 2015] Ukraine financial catastrophe of 2014 2015

Notable quotes:
"... According to UN standards a person lives below the poverty line, if one spends life and food less than 5 USD a day, or less than $150 a month . The subsistence minimum in Ukraine today is defined in 1176 UAH, i.e. about 50 dollars a month - less than two dollars a day. ..."
"... So the Ukrainians in poverty are already close to residents of African countries, which spend an average of 1.25 per day US dollars, was heard on "Radio Liberty". ..."
"... "What is subsistence? It's not just food, it and public transportation, and household services, and utilities, and clothing. Overlooked in the subsistence minimum medical services and education. If we analyze these factors, we can understand that Ukrainians are below the threshold of absolute poverty," ..."
"... Today more than 80% of Ukrainians live below the poverty line, the UN data show. In 2012, according to the world organization, only 15% of Ukrainian citizens existed on 5 dollars a day. ..."
foreignpolicy.com

According to UN standards a person lives below the poverty line, if one spends life and food less than 5 USD a day, or less than $150 a month . The subsistence minimum in Ukraine today is defined in 1176 UAH, i.e. about 50 dollars a month - less than two dollars a day.

So the Ukrainians in poverty are already close to residents of African countries, which spend an average of 1.25 per day US dollars, was heard on "Radio Liberty".

"What is subsistence? It's not just food, it and public transportation, and household services, and utilities, and clothing. Overlooked in the subsistence minimum medical services and education. If we analyze these factors, we can understand that Ukrainians are below the threshold of absolute poverty," stressed Shipko.

According to the Deputy, the minimum wage in Ukraine at the current exchange rate of the national Bank should be approximately 3750 UAH - the only way the Ukrainians will be able at least get requred $5 a day.

Today more than 80% of Ukrainians live below the poverty line, the UN data show. In 2012, according to the world organization, only 15% of Ukrainian citizens existed on 5 dollars a day.

Ukrainian women do not want to bear children through insecurity and inability to pay for the hospital and diaper.

[May 27, 2015] Ukraine is now problem for both Russian and West, but West managed to score several points against Russia and do it relatively cheaply

The West scored major geopolitical victory against Russia: As Paul said (see below): "My limited knowledge of the situation inside the Ukraine is that a lot of Ukrainians do blame Russia. Why not? That is what the TV says. It is very hard to get someone to admit he made a mistake."
Poor Ukrainian citizen. Poor Ukrainian pensioners existing on a $1 a day or less (with exchange rate around 26.5 hrivna per dollar, pension around 900 hrivna is around $1 per day. Some pensioners get less then that ( miserable 1500 hrivna per month considered to be "decent" pension and monthly salary 4000 hrivna is a "good" salary by Ukrainian standards).
The last thing EU wants is an additional stream of refugees from Ukraine escaping miserable salaries and lack of decently paying jobs and pressure of Ukrainian migrant workers on unqualified job market positions.... So far the main hit for this was not in Western but in Russian job market, but that may change. At the same time making the Ukraine enemy of Russia is a definitive geopolitical victory, achieved with relatively modest financial infusions (USA estimate is 5 billions, the EU is probably a half of that) and indirect support of Western Ukrainian nationalists.
One year ago there was a hope the Donetsk problem will be solved. Now in 2016 this civil war entered the third year -- Kiev government can't squash unrecognized Donetsk Republic with military force and it does not want to switch to federal state to accommodate their pretty modest demands: initially use of Russian language and reverse of "creeping cultural colonization" of this region by Western Ukraine. Initially the official language question was the one of the most important and Kiev Provisional government rejected Canadian variant of using the same language as its powerful, dominant neighbor and unleashed a civil war (with full blessing of the USA, which pursue "divide and conquer strategy in this region from the moment of dissolution of the USSR). Now after so much bloodshed the positions are hardened... Imagine that the Quebec nationalists came to power in Canada by French supported and financed coup, and instantly outlawed the English language for official usage and in schools and universities.
Notable quotes:
"... If you made a list of perhaps ten goals that powerful Western groups may have had in this Ukrainian project, how many have been achieved? ..."
"... That has surely been largely achieved. ..."
"... That has largely happened, as the TV says Russia stole the Crimea and is sending terrorists and bandits into the country. Look at all the banditry in the LPR. ..."
"... Finally, the bankruptcy and transfer of the country from Ukrainian oligarchs to Western corporations is about to begin. ..."
"... They surely screwed things up in the Ukraine over the last ten years. ..."
"... I'm afraid the West would like to start wars in multiple fronts at the same time making it very hard for Russia to respond. ..."
"... If the West could pull all this through at the same time Russia would be forced to either capitulate on most fronts or start a major war. Russia could not answer to these threats with conventional ways so the options for Russia would be to use nuclear weapons or accept a major geopolitical defeat. ..."
"... Georgia and Azerbaijan are not likely to cooperate, Ukraine's offensive capability is minimal, the Americans are not any more eager to attack Syria than they were two years ago, and the Islamist threat to Central Asia is presently contained. ..."
"... It has without doubt caused problems and will affect some Russian military effectiveness in the short term, but no. For example, though some products were actually made in the Ukraine, many of those businesses contracted out the production of components to Russia. ..."
"... True, but again a very short term achievement. ..."
"... NATO is not going to do anything apart from make as much noise and fearmaking as possible ..."
"... The American military industrial complex has screwed itself in a bid to make more money! Their space programs are not exactly brilliant either. ..."
"... [The transfer of property to Western corporations is] Almost inevitable, but there are several factors at play here. Western investors will have to deliver rather than just asset strip and run; domestic political repercussions will be huge at least in the medium to long term. ..."
"... Either way it is the West to whom the Ukrainian citizen will pay tribute, for a long long long time. ..."
"... All Russia needs to do is be fair and reasonable and step in at the right moment. ..."
"... As to Moscow screwing up the Ukraine over the last ten years, I think that may be a bit harsh. Sometimes the best option is to keep your hand out of the viper's nest and do nothing as much as possible, only intervening when critical. ..."
"... To be honest, Western foreign policy has rarely been panicked, but is always exploitative. If the opportunity arises, it will jump in having prepared the PPNN to scream that something must be done. ..."
"... No panic here. Just my opinion that the Kremlin needs to study how the ex-Soviet sphere has played out and deal with things like NGOs and educational, cultural, and media matters. ..."
"... As for my view that NATO wants to stress Russia, well, I suppose it comes down to your Weltanschauung. I think the US has to take Russia down to some degree, even if it is just smashing Syria. You aren't a superpower if someone can get away with things like grabbing the Crimea without paying a cost. Plus, Russia provides China with protection till China can develop a decent military. So the US has a limited amount of time before locking things up. Call it the Wolfowitz Doctrine if that is your preferred way of looking at it. ..."
"... If I am right that the US has to tie Russia up, the logical way is to create as many problems on the periphery as possible. ..."
"... I wouldn't take the problems with certain fighters to mean the US hasn't got great technology in its black projects. ..."
"... As for Ukrainians losing their anti-Russian religion, well, perhaps. But as long as Russia occupies the Crimea, that could take a long time. My bet is the anti-Russian sentiment will last a lot longer than the Ukraine does. ..."
"... Regardless of the think tanks, one thing the US can no longer ignore is their pocket. That's where to hit them. Even Osama Bin Laden understood this and was his primary goal to cause the US to over-extend itself politically & financially. ..."
"... The US want to do more but it can't do it the old expensive way – it has less means but it wants to achieve more. Something has to give. The US has barely started addressing the problem. That's even before we consider the move of some oil trading out of the US dollar. ..."
"... And what of the growing number of home grown jihadists that all NATO's wars have created? For all their support by western foreign policy to undermine Russia, it's a monster that will bite anyone and is increasingly looking at the West. As others have written before me, does the West want a reliable partner in Russia whilst it is under threat of jihadism or another big problem on their plate they can't quite manage? ..."
"... Western corporations will only plunder the country if they can get a return on their investment, and except in the case of what they can strip from it – like the black earth – and take away, that does not seem very likely to me. However, I would agree, and have done since some time ago, that the west's biggest success was turning Ukraine and Russia into enemies. ..."
"... NATO has not quite given up trying to turn Ukraine into a prosperous western democracy within its own orbit, but the enormity of the task and the hidden factors that make it so is beginning to dawn and enthusiasm in Europe is well on the wane, remaining strong only in Washington which does not have to do much of anything but manage. ..."
"... I think it is clear to Brussels and Washington that Moscow will see Ukraine destroyed and a failed state before it will allow it to be a NATO satellite snuggled up against its southwestern borders. ..."
"... NATO is running a steady propaganda campaign about Russian aggression, but I don't know how well that is actually selling outside Galicia, while it must be clear to a lot of Ukrainians what a failure the promise of western largesse was. ..."
"... My limited knowledge of the situation inside the Ukraine is that a lot of Ukrainians do blame Russia. Why not? That is what the TV says. It is very hard to get someone to admit he made a mistake. ..."
"... My main point in rubbing the west's nose around in it is not that they have conclusively lost, because it is indeed early days to make such a judgement, but that it has not won easily as it bragged it would do. ..."
"... The west does a poor job of managing expectations generally, and it has done abysmally this time around. It has no intention of curbing oligarchs in Ukraine and little interest beyond lip service in genuine reform in Ukraine. For their part, Europe should proceed cautiously with plans to integrate Ukraine more closely, because it is plain that the interest of Ukraine's oligarchs in such a course is to broaden their opportunities for stealing and increasing their wealth. ..."
"... There are plenty of opportunities for the west to steal Ukraine blind, but few that involve a product or entity that the west can buy, remove and sell somewhere else. ..."
"... The Trade Union Building on maidan square was found to be full of the burned remains of Berkut prisoners chained to the batteries and pipes after right sector set the building on fire. The Berkut were burned alive, left to their fate in the very two floors that right sector called their own during the maidan debacle. ..."
"... The Trade Union Building in Odessa also had people burned alive, the total death toll there was almost 300. The sub basement was a charnel house of corpses including women and children ..."
"... Over 200 citizens were killed in Mariupol the following weekend, shot down or burned to death in Militsiya HQ. In this incident at least a few of the perpetrators were destroyed in an ambush by Opolchensya as Opelchensya were leaving the city, ordered out as they were too few to defend the berg. ..."
"... To expand on the documentations a tiny bit, do you think all those artillerists who when captured to a man scream that they did not know they were bombarding and killing thousands of our civilians are believed? Not hardly. They knowingly committed crimes and they will pay for their crimes. ..."
"... Auslander is living in a denial. The perps of these crimes will never face any punishment because there is nobody to carry out such punishments. Novorossiya is a tiny portion of Ukraine and the rest is ruled by the Kiev thugs. Novorossiya can never reach the criminals there. ..."
"... Well, in their lifetime anyway. Russia will not invade and Novorossiya is currently limited to defending their land against Kiev attacks unable to even liberate Sloviasnk and Mariupol. And it would be against the nature of Russia (or NAF) to send partizans to kill the perps in Kiev or Lvov. Russians simply do not behave that way nowadays. ..."
"... I wonder if he has any substantiation for those numbers. Some sources have always said that hundreds more died in the Trade Unions building in Odessa than were ever officially acknowledged, but I don't recall hearing about anyone dying in the Trade Unions building on Maidan, and I thought the death toll in Mariupol was just a few police (not to make it sound like that's nothing) rather than hundreds. And I follow the situation in Ukraine fairly closely – this would not even register on those who get all their news from CNN. ..."
"... Actually it was my net-acquaintances from Serbia and Bulgaria who were arguing with each other who is more deserving the title of "niggers of Europe". Serbian guy was winning, using the ultimate proof that Tupak is alive in Serbia ..."
"... The election of Poland's new president spells big problems for Ukraine. The issue is "de-heroization" of OUN-UPA militants whom Ukraine just recently granted the status of the liberators of Europe from fascism. But unlike Komorowski, who forgave the Ukrainian heroes the Volhyn Massacre in which the Banderites slaughtered over 200 thousand Poles, the conservative Duda does not intend to sacrifice his principles. ..."
"... This is so. A state must have myth and Ukraine has already rejected the Soviet myth. Junk the Bandera myth as well, and what is left? 'Slava Ukraini' hasn't been brilliantly effective in motivating Ukrainians to fight, but would they have done better with a slogan like 'for the preservation of ill-gotten capital!'? ..."
May 26, 2015 | marknesop.wordpress.com

Paul, May 25, 2015 at 11:49 pm

The premise that the West must be losing is a bit simplistic. If you made a list of perhaps ten goals that powerful Western groups may have had in this Ukrainian project, how many have been achieved?
  • For example, one goal was to destroy businesses (and the military-industrial complex) that were oriented towards Russia. That has surely been largely achieved.
  • Another goal was to radicalize the Ukrainian population against Russia. That has largely happened, as the TV says Russia stole the Crimea and is sending terrorists and bandits into the country. Look at all the banditry in the LPR.
  • Another goal was to stress the Russian military with having to respond to too many problems in a short period of time, which may be relevant if and when the West hits on several fronts at once.
  • Finally, the bankruptcy and transfer of the country from Ukrainian oligarchs to Western corporations is about to begin. Doubt Russia can stop that.

Not denying that Putin and his circle have survived, and that the Russian economy is in better shape than most expected, but we should try to think long and hard about the pros and cons of the Kremlin's approaches.

They surely screwed things up in the Ukraine over the last ten years. Approximately zero soft power in a place that it should have been straightforward to create.

People have been writing novels and articles for a long time about how the West could gin up a war in the Ukraine to start an attack on Russia or otherwise break the establishment in Moscow. It was fairly obvious.

karl1haushofer, May 26, 2015 at 2:02 am
I'm afraid the West would like to start wars in multiple fronts at the same time making it very hard for Russia to respond.
  • Kiev would start a major offensive against Donetsk and Lugansk.
  • Transdnistria is currently blockaded by Moldova and Ukraine with no food supplies allowed to pass. Moldovan military operation might follow and Russia would be mostly unable to respond by other means than missile strikes against Moldova – which Russia under extremely cautious Putin would never do.
  • Azerbaijan would launch an offensive against Armenia in Nagarno-Karabakh. Russia lacks common border with Armenia so Russia's options would again be limited.
  • Albanian proxies, supported and trained by the West, would start military and terrorist attacks against Macedonian authorities.
  • NATO would start to bomb Syrian military and capital to oust and kill Assad.
  • Georgia might start another military operation against South Ossetia in parallel with others if it thinks Russia is too preoccupied to respond.
  • NATO-funded and -trained Islamic militants would attack authorities in Central Asian countries like Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.

If the West could pull all this through at the same time Russia would be forced to either capitulate on most fronts or start a major war. Russia could not answer to these threats with conventional ways so the options for Russia would be to use nuclear weapons or accept a major geopolitical defeat.

Pavlo Svolochenko, May 26, 2015 at 2:17 am
Yes, 'If'.
  • Georgia and Azerbaijan are not likely to cooperate, Ukraine's offensive capability is minimal, the Americans are not any more eager to attack Syria than they were two years ago, and the Islamist threat to Central Asia is presently contained.
  • The Moldovan army is not capable of defeating Transdnistria by itself, so victory would require NATO troops to join in the attack. And if it comes to the point where NATO is willing to directly assault Russian forces, then there's no reason to hold back anyway.
et Al , May 26, 2015 at 6:12 am
Here's my take for what it is worth:

The West plays the short game, so initially it may look like they have achieved much, much like their foreign policy successes at first, which then turn out to be disasters with the West reduced to firefighting.

1: ..destroy businesses (and the military-industrial complex) that were oriented towards Russia. This has not succeeded. It has without doubt caused problems and will affect some Russian military effectiveness in the short term, but no. For example, though some products were actually made in the Ukraine, many of those businesses contracted out the production of components to Russia.

2: ..radicalize the Ukrainian population against Russia. True, but again a very short term achievement. Food on plates and jobs don't grow on trees. What we do have is the ones in the middle who gravitated to the traditional Russophobes, aka swing voters, but things are only going to get worse in the Ukraine and the Nazi junta cannot deliver. Those swing voter will swing the other way, not a Russia love in, but a pragmatic middle ground. That is where they started.

3: Another goal was to stress the Russian military..What evidence is there of this? Apart from quite a number of massive snap military exercises that Russia has pulled off and impressed even the Russo-skeptic military crowd at RUSI and other MIX fronts, it is quite efficient to fly 50 year old Tu-95 bombers around Europe wearing out expensive western military equipment that will need to be replaced much sooner now than later. All those austerity plans that call for holding off on major defense spending in Europe are messed up. Money going in to weapons is money going away from jobs and the economy. Ukraine's rocket cooperation with Brazil is dead (now switched to Russia) and also with other partners. So far the US has not actively banned commercial satellites from being launched from Russian rockets, but the US cannot get its billion dollar spy sats in to space without Russian rocket engines. No-one has yet pulled the plug

NATO is not going to do anything apart from make as much noise and fearmaking as possible. It's one thing to scream and shout, its another to drop their trousers. It is quite the paper tiger. The USAF is set to rapidly shrink according to their own admission. The F-35 is designed to replace 5 aircraft – hubris or what? The F-15, F16, AV-8B, A-10 & the F-18. It's a pig of an aircraft that will perform those missions worse, in most cases, than those designed in the late 1960s early 1970s. The American military industrial complex has screwed itself in a bid to make more money! Their space programs are not exactly brilliant either.

4: the bankruptcy and transfer of the country from Ukrainian oligarchs to Western corporations is about to begin. [The transfer of property to Western corporations is] Almost inevitable, but there are several factors at play here. Western investors will have to deliver rather than just asset strip and run; domestic political repercussions will be huge at least in the medium to long term.

This is exactly what almost happened to Russia and then look how things turned out. Ukraine is of course a different case and the West will certainly try and manage it to their advantage, but it won't work if it is not for sustained profit. Either way it is the West to whom the Ukrainian citizen will pay tribute, for a long long long time. This is long before we throw any legal questions in to the mix. Whoever is in power now will pay the political price in future sooner or later. All Russia needs to do is be fair and reasonable and step in at the right moment.

As to Moscow screwing up the Ukraine over the last ten years, I think that may be a bit harsh. Sometimes the best option is to keep your hand out of the viper's nest and do nothing as much as possible, only intervening when critical.

Part of the problem with western politics and the Pork Pie News Networks of the last 25 years is the we must do something now mentality. Let's put it this way, you go in to hospital for a non-critical undiagnosed condition. Would you a) want to have the tests done and the best course of action chosen with your consent, or b) panic & be rushed to the operating theater so that they can just have a look around?

To be honest, Western foreign policy has rarely been panicked, but is always exploitative. If the opportunity arises, it will jump in having prepared the PPNN to scream that something must be done.

In short, as it is written on the cover of the good book, DON'T PANIC!

Paul, May 26, 2015 at 8:37 am
No panic here. Just my opinion that the Kremlin needs to study how the ex-Soviet sphere has played out and deal with things like NGOs and educational, cultural, and media matters. The science of mind manipulation has made great progress over the last century. It is a big mistake to just deal on an oligarchic level. Ukrainians have a legitimate gripe that their country is insanely corrupt and they can easily blame Moscow. That being the case, measures needed to be taken. And not creating any semblance of a pro-Russian political or intellectual class was similarly stupid.

As for my view that NATO wants to stress Russia, well, I suppose it comes down to your Weltanschauung. I think the US has to take Russia down to some degree, even if it is just smashing Syria. You aren't a superpower if someone can get away with things like grabbing the Crimea without paying a cost. Plus, Russia provides China with protection till China can develop a decent military. So the US has a limited amount of time before locking things up. Call it the Wolfowitz Doctrine if that is your preferred way of looking at it.

If I am right that the US has to tie Russia up, the logical way is to create as many problems on the periphery as possible. Could be Georgia; could be Central Asia; could be Transnistria. What would be your advice to those in US think tanks who are trying to keep domination of the world? What would be a good strategy? And, for what it is worth, I wouldn't take the problems with certain fighters to mean the US hasn't got great technology in its black projects. That is where all the money and technology have gone for the last 30 years. Do you really think the US would struggle to get to the Moon now and did it in 1969? Be serious – all technology is tremendously better today.

As for Ukrainians losing their anti-Russian religion, well, perhaps. But as long as Russia occupies the Crimea, that could take a long time. My bet is the anti-Russian sentiment will last a lot longer than the Ukraine does.

et Al, May 26, 2015 at 9:35 am
Regardless of the think tanks, one thing the US can no longer ignore is their pocket. That's where to hit them. Even Osama Bin Laden understood this and was his primary goal to cause the US to over-extend itself politically & financially.

The US want to do more but it can't do it the old expensive way – it has less means but it wants to achieve more. Something has to give. The US has barely started addressing the problem. That's even before we consider the move of some oil trading out of the US dollar.

And what of the growing number of home grown jihadists that all NATO's wars have created? For all their support by western foreign policy to undermine Russia, it's a monster that will bite anyone and is increasingly looking at the West. As others have written before me, does the West want a reliable partner in Russia whilst it is under threat of jihadism or another big problem on their plate they can't quite manage?

I have no doubt that the US has been trying to tie up Russia, but it is just more frenetic than before, the main planks of NATO enlargement (and weakening) resolved, but the rest has gone a bit wrong. The West is growing increasingly desperate and is trying all sorts of things to undermine Russia, but it could be much, much worse from a sanctions point of view. Level heads in the West understand that trying to pull the rug out completely from under Russia is a massive risk and one they are very careful in making.

As for their wonder-weapons, the US cannot afford enough of them or make them cheap enough for their allies to buy in sufficient numbers. It is much easier and cheaper to upgrade the sensors and missiles on a SAM system than to design and bring to production standard a brand new wonder-weapon. The old days of easily blinding air-defenses are almost over when you can have a lot of cheap distributed sensors providing the information, passively & actively. The countermeasure is a lot cheaper.

In al, Money Money Money – and every passing day the US has less to leverage and has to spread it far and wide:

marknesop, May 26, 2015 at 7:38 am
Western corporations will only plunder the country if they can get a return on their investment, and except in the case of what they can strip from it – like the black earth – and take away, that does not seem very likely to me. However, I would agree, and have done since some time ago, that the west's biggest success was turning Ukraine and Russia into enemies.

NATO has not quite given up trying to turn Ukraine into a prosperous western democracy within its own orbit, but the enormity of the task and the hidden factors that make it so is beginning to dawn and enthusiasm in Europe is well on the wane, remaining strong only in Washington which does not have to do much of anything but manage.

I think it is clear to Brussels and Washington that Moscow will see Ukraine destroyed and a failed state before it will allow it to be a NATO satellite snuggled up against its southwestern borders. The part that NATO is having trouble with is getting Russia to destroy it, so that it will be in the minds of Ukrainians for generations who did this to them.

NATO is running a steady propaganda campaign about Russian aggression, but I don't know how well that is actually selling outside Galicia, while it must be clear to a lot of Ukrainians what a failure the promise of western largesse was.

Paul, May 26, 2015 at 8:20 am
That's all reasonable, though it is hard to believe that there isn't a lot more than just some black earth to expropriate.

My limited knowledge of the situation inside the Ukraine is that a lot of Ukrainians do blame Russia. Why not? That is what the TV says. It is very hard to get someone to admit he made a mistake.

marknesop, May 26, 2015 at 10:17 am
That's true enough, and it appears there has always been a certain amount of hostility to Russia west of the Dneipr, so they perhaps did not need too much coaxing. My main point in rubbing the west's nose around in it is not that they have conclusively lost, because it is indeed early days to make such a judgement, but that it has not won easily as it bragged it would do.

The country it said it would confidently bat aside in its confident stroll to victory has not only weathered western attempts to crush its economy and put in place safeguards which will hurt western business opportunities in future, it has strengthened a powerful alliance with Asia and garnered considerable international sympathy, which implies increased hostility toward the west. Meanwhile, the country the west bragged it would snatch from Russia's orbit and make a model of a prosperous western democracy is miserable, poor and angry.

The west does a poor job of managing expectations generally, and it has done abysmally this time around. It has no intention of curbing oligarchs in Ukraine and little interest beyond lip service in genuine reform in Ukraine. For their part, Europe should proceed cautiously with plans to integrate Ukraine more closely, because it is plain that the interest of Ukraine's oligarchs in such a course is to broaden their opportunities for stealing and increasing their wealth.

There are plenty of opportunities for the west to steal Ukraine blind, but few that involve a product or entity that the west can buy, remove and sell somewhere else. Many such opportunities rely on western interests taking over Ukrainian businesses and asset-stripping them like crazy; however, the main buyer in many cases would be Russia, which has no interest in making western businesses rich, or other western buyers who would have to take over and run a Ukrainian business in a very uncertain environment in which its biggest market is Russia.

Pavlo Svolochenko, May 26, 2015 at 1:57 am

A copypaste from Auslander (formelry of MPnet), originally from Saker's blog:

"This is not the first time such atrocities [the mutilated rebel prisoner] have happened in this conflict and it will not be the last.

The Trade Union Building on maidan square was found to be full of the burned remains of Berkut prisoners chained to the batteries and pipes after right sector set the building on fire. The Berkut were burned alive, left to their fate in the very two floors that right sector called their own during the maidan debacle.

The Trade Union Building in Odessa also had people burned alive, the total death toll there was almost 300. The sub basement was a charnel house of corpses including women and children. I know the official death toll and I know the real death toll. We also lost a friend in that atrocity, not in the building but at the far end of the square, beaten to death because he was walking home from work at the wrong place and the wrong time. Why was he beaten to death? He had a speech impediment and when he got nervous he literally could not talk. Since he could not say 'salo yucrane' 5 right sector boys beat him to death in broad daylight.

Over 200 citizens were killed in Mariupol the following weekend, shot down or burned to death in Militsiya HQ. In this incident at least a few of the perpetrators were destroyed in an ambush by Opolchensya as Opelchensya were leaving the city, ordered out as they were too few to defend the berg.

The killings of innocents and not so innocents have been ongoing since the beginning and well before the beginning of the conflict that let to what is now Novorossiya. One can not morally justify killing all the UAF because of the acts of a relative few, but you can rest assured that documentations are being kept for all who can be identified as committing either individual or mass atrocities.

To expand on the documentations a tiny bit, do you think all those artillerists who when captured to a man scream that they did not know they were bombarding and killing thousands of our civilians are believed? Not hardly. They knowingly committed crimes and they will pay for their crimes. Do you think all those 'people' who commit atrocities and then post photos of the atrocities and openly brag about them on social media will walk away unscathed? Again, no hardly. Do you think we don't know who was and is abducting young women and even
girl children for their use and then killed and discarded them like less than animals? They are known.

I can go on for reams but you get the idea. These are crimes being committed by a relative few of UAF, and for the record anyone fighting for Ukraine against Novorossiya is a member of UAF, their military unit does not matter. In the end justice will be done, by the law and with due legal process where possible. Where not possible, justice will still be done. Justice, like revenge, is a dish best served cold.

As for those few of you who are still aghast at the total and deafening silence from USEU over these ongoing atrocities and crimes, I urge you to forget any chance of anything being said about we untermenschen being slaughtered by those civilized denizens of USEU. It is not going to happen so stop complaining about it. Never forget, never forgive, always remember, but don't complain, it's useless."

karl1haushofer, May 26, 2015 at 2:07 am
Auslander is living in a denial. The perps of these crimes will never face any punishment because there is nobody to carry out such punishments. Novorossiya is a tiny portion of Ukraine and the rest is ruled by the Kiev thugs. Novorossiya can never reach the criminals there.
Pavlo Svolochenko, May 26, 2015 at 2:11 am
Never is a strong word.
karl1haushofer , May 26, 2015 at 2:22 am
Well, in their lifetime anyway. Russia will not invade and Novorossiya is currently limited to defending their land against Kiev attacks unable to even liberate Sloviasnk and Mariupol. And it would be against the nature of Russia (or NAF) to send partizans to kill the perps in Kiev or Lvov. Russians simply do not behave that way nowadays.
kat kan, May 26, 2015 at 4:54 am
He says "In the end justice will be done, by the law and with due legal process where possible. Where not possible, justice will still be done. Justice, like revenge, is a dish best served cold."

I do believe various people involved in Odessa have disappeared – or turned up. Dead. Some have had to go to ground. Some have "died" under unbelievable circumstances, but their new name will probably still have the same face. The biggest obstacle will be all this wearing of masks, but with more recent atrocities, where they are garrisoned in the cities for months, they'd be known anyway..

The spirit of Novorossiya will be expanding (not yet). Things may slowly go back towards normal. But fully normal it can never be, while murderers and torturers walk free by the hundreds. It is going to be a very long headache for Ukraine.

marknesop , May 26, 2015 at 7:45 am
I wonder if he has any substantiation for those numbers. Some sources have always said that hundreds more died in the Trade Unions building in Odessa than were ever officially acknowledged, but I don't recall hearing about anyone dying in the Trade Unions building on Maidan, and I thought the death toll in Mariupol was just a few police (not to make it sound like that's nothing) rather than hundreds. And I follow the situation in Ukraine fairly closely – this would not even register on those who get all their news from CNN.
Moscow Exile, May 26, 2015 at 6:02 am
From the Brain-Dead Centre of the International Community:

Some comments:

  • – russians are very friendly people this story is all fake
  • – Yeah! And we'll kill anyone who disagrees!
  • – Russians ARE the blacks of europe. (no offense to russians, blacks, or eurpeans ofc)
  • – The scariest white people are Americans who make fictional Russian accents
Lyttenburgh, May 26, 2015 at 12:27 pm
Actually it was my net-acquaintances from Serbia and Bulgaria who were arguing with each other who is more deserving the title of "niggers of Europe". Serbian guy was winning, using the ultimate proof that Tupak is alive in Serbia
Tim Owen, May 26, 2015 at 2:03 pm
Yeah that's laughable. On the other hand

The election of Poland's new president spells big problems for Ukraine. The issue is "de-heroization" of OUN-UPA militants whom Ukraine just recently granted the status of the liberators of Europe from fascism. But unlike Komorowski, who forgave the Ukrainian heroes the Volhyn Massacre in which the Banderites slaughtered over 200 thousand Poles, the conservative Duda does not intend to sacrifice his principles.

http://fortruss.blogspot.ca/2015/05/polands-new-president-demands-ukraine.html

Of course J Hawk's take is probably on the money. J.Hawk's Comment:

Not so fast. I'm not so sure that Duda wants to do any of the things described above. One of the major reasons Duda won is the defection of the rural voters, whose average income declined by 14% in 2014 in large measure due to Russian food embargo. Since Duda knows on which side his bread is buttered (no pun intended), deep down he also realizes the importance of that embargo lifting. His UPA criticism may well be only an excuse, a pretext to allow himself to maneuver out of his election campaign pro-Ukraine position while saving face. Because, ultimately, what is the likelihood that the Rada will actually pass a law that "de-heroizes" UPA to a sufficient degree? And even if it does, will Bandera monuments start disappearing from Lvov and other parts of Western Ukraine?

Pavlo Svolochenko, May 26, 2015 at 2:19 pm
This is so. A state must have myth and Ukraine has already rejected the Soviet myth. Junk the Bandera myth as well, and what is left? 'Slava Ukraini' hasn't been brilliantly effective in motivating Ukrainians to fight, but would they have done better with a slogan like 'for the preservation of ill-gotten capital!'?

[May 23, 2015] Ukraines Bloody Civil War No End in Sight

Notable quotes:
"... is a civil war between two groups with diametrically opposed visions for the future of their country. It is a civil war that also-given that each side has enormously powerful supporters-poses a genuinely grave risk to global security. ..."
Mar 31, 2015 | The National Interest

The OSCE reported that the main railway station in the city was shelled on March 25, and a visit to it the day after showed that to be so. Rebel tanks could be seen participating in exercises on the rural outskirts of Donetsk on the 26th. The sound of sporadic artillery fire could be heard in the city's centrally located Leninsky District well into the early hours of the 27th.


The mood among many in Donetsk-noncombatants as well as rebel fighters who comprise what is known as the Army of Novorossiya-indicates little interest in a rapprochement with Kiev. This is, given the conditions of the city after nearly a full year of war, rather understandable. Many bitterly complain of Kiev's chosen moniker for the military campaign it is waging against the separatist fighters, the "Anti-Terrorist Operation." Ordinary citizens and combatants alike view it as an attempt to dehumanize them as a whole by grouping the entire population of the region in with likes of ISIS.

Interactions with several rebel rank-and-files and a briefing from two rebel officers reveal even less of an appetite for a way back into the Ukrainian fold. As one senior officer put it: "Ukraine is dead. It was killed on May 2 in Odessa." Questions regarding Russian involvement were met with scoffs-though one did admit that "[their] Russian brothers" did provide food supplies to the area.

... ... ...

Interestingly, the rebels seem to have a similar mindset to those U.S. Congressmen who overwhelmingly voted to supply Kiev with lethal military aid last week: that the remilitarization of the conflict is simply inevitable. One rebel commander said that he expects Kiev to launch a new major offensive "within a week" and added, matter-of-factly: "We are ready." And ready, he claims, for the long haul.

... ... ...

Yet it seems that the Washington establishment's (though, interestingly, it seems not the president's) preferred policy choice is to send lethal aid to Kiev because it is believed, no doubt sincerely, that a supply of javelin anti-tank missiles will somehow increase the number of Russian fatalities to such an extent that public opinion would turn against Putin-thereby forcing him to back down.

This is nothing more than a fantasy dressed up as a strategy because it attributes little to no agency on the part of the rebel fighters or, for that matter, the area's noncombatants. The simple, undeniable fact is that even if Russia was to be persuaded-via sanctions or via a significant uptick in military casualties - to wash its hands of the region, there is almost no chance that the indigenous military forces in the region would simply melt away. What is continuing to unfold in the Donbass - despite repeated protestations from Kiev's representatives in Washington - is a civil war between two groups with diametrically opposed visions for the future of their country. It is a civil war that also-given that each side has enormously powerful supporters-poses a genuinely grave risk to global security.

James Carden is a contributing editor for The National Interest.

Igor

Wow! Who is allowed to publish this article in the Western free press? Who allowed the journalist of National Interest go to Moscow and to Donetsk!? And what about the story about invisible Russian army? :-))) James Carden is real hero! :-))) Western press need 1 year for understanding of simple things...

Imba > Igor

Psst, don't scare them with your sarcasm. I'm sure author feels like a pioneer on Wild West, while writing such articles. You can scare him away and we will have to read again dull and boring articles about invasions, annexation, tattered economy, moscovites eating hedgehogs and so on.
Please respect him ;)

Dima Lauri > Imba

I am sure authors who does not accept the version of Washington will be soon labeled by "Putin troll", "Payed KGB agent", "Drunk/Stupid" or whatever verbal distortion.

folktruther

a good article for a change. the Ukraine coup engineered by Washington was the worst event of Obama's administration, and may perhaps turn out to be worse that Bush jr's invasion of Iraq. Washington simply wants a war, cold or hot, to disconnect Europe from Russia. hopefully Europe, especially Germany and france, will rebel against Washington policy like they did the Chinese bank, averting a war among nuclear powers. but the issue is currently in doubt.

[May 18, 2015] Open thread for night owls The empire strikes back

May 17, 2015 | | Daily Kos News

Hersh's latest is a ten thousand-word piece in the London Review of Books in which he explains that everything the government told you about the killing of Osama bin Laden is a lie. A few of the highlights are: (1) The government of Pakistan knew exactly where Bin Laden was, (2) Saudi Arabia was paying Pakistan to keep Bin Laden in his safe house compound, (3) America found out where Bin Laden was not by tracking an Al Qaeda courier or by torturing people, but because a disgruntled Pakistani intelligence officer wanted to claim the $25 million dollar reward, (4) America was going to make it appear as if Bin Laden had been killed in a drone strike, but switched courses at the last minute after one of the SEAL's helicopters crashed, (5) The American and Pakistani government colluded to lie to the public about how Bin Laden was found and killed.

Predictably, many in the media have rushed to the government's defense. Hersh's anonymous sources rankle them. The story itself, which is so far removed from the official narrative and implicates corruption at the highest levels of government, has a dreamlike aura. Never mind that the account the government gave has been deteriorating from the start, and the glaring contradictions between the official versions as related by the Pakistani and American governments. Put aside the fact that someone else using different sources reported a version of Hersh's story in 2011, or that NBC, within a day, had already confirmed a key point of Hersh's narrative. If Hersh's critics actually did submerge themselves in a detailed re-reporting of his allegations, the process would subjugate the American ruling class to deeper scrutiny than usual. [...]

[May 17, 2015] Rumor mill about coming Yats demise

yalensis, May 17, 2015 at 11:25 am

This piece is proposing a bit of a conspiracy theory; but also making a solid prediction, that can proved or disproved in the short term.

The theory is this:

One of Vickie Nuland's tasks, in her recent trip to Kiev, was to groom a man named Sergei Levochkin for the Prime Minister job. (to replace Yats).

Levochkin is a former Party of Regions type who was in Yanukovych government. Now he is head of the so-called "Opposition Bloc".

Levochkin confirmed that, yes, he met with Nuland; and, yes, they discussed regulation of the crisis in Donbass.

The theory is that Americans have not placed all their eggs in one basket; and that Opp Bloc of former Regions is being groomed to take over Ukie government, since Porky & Co have failed miserably. Nuland is said to be auditioning replacements for both Porky and Yats.

Again, this is all provable/disprovable, we just wait to see if it happens.

The more interesting aspect is: What will Russia do? Is Kremlin in on this conspiracy to throw Porky under the bus (if indeed such a conspiracy exists)?

Everybody knows that Russia wasted years of time supporting Yanukovych government, and in fact it was Russia that put all its eggs in Party of Regions basket. Will Russia now accept the return of a basically Regions government; and if so, will they throw independent Donbass under the bus? These are all questions that we await eagerly to see the answers.

[May 17, 2015]US Empire: American Exceptionalism Is No Shining City On a Hill

May 15, 2015 | informationclearinghouse.info

The concept of American exceptionalism is as old as the United States, and it implies that the country has a qualitative difference from other nations. This notion of being special gives Americans the sense that playing a lead role in world affair is part of their natural historic calling. However there is nothing historically exceptional about this: the Roman empire also viewed itself as a system superior to other nations and, more recently, so did the British and the French empires.

On the topic of American exceptionalism, which he often called "Americanism", Seymour Martin Lipset noted that "America's ideology can be described in five words: liberty, egalitarism, individualism, populism and laissez-faire. The revolutionary ideology, which became American creed, is liberalism in its eighteenth and nineteenth-century meaning. It departed from conservatism Toryism, statist communitarianism, mercantilism and noblesse-oblige dominant in monarchical state-church formed cultures." Naturally identifying America's system as a unique ideology, just like calling its successful colonial war against Britain a revolution, is a fallacy. For one, America was never based on social equality, as rigid class distinctions always remained through US history.

In reality, the US has never broken from European social models. American exceptionalism implies a sense of superiority, just like in the case of the British empire, the French empire and the Roman empire. In such imperialist systems, class inequality was never challenged and, as matter of fact, served as cornerstone of the imperial structure. In American history, the only exception to this system based on social inequality was during the post World War II era of the economic "miracle". The period from 1945 to the mid 1970s was characterized by major economic growth, an absence of big economic downturns, and a much higher level of social mobility on a massive scale. This time frame saw a tremendous expansion of higher education: from 2.5 million people to 12 million going to colleges and universities, and this education explosion, naturally, fostered this upward mobility where the American dream became possible for the middle class.

Regardless of real domestic social progress made in the United States after the birth of the empire in 1945, for the proponents of American exceptionalism - this includes the entire political class - the myth of the US being defined as a "shining city on a hill" has always been a rationale to justify the pursuit of imperialism. For example, when President Barack Obama addressed the nation to justify the US military intervention in Libya, he said that "America is different", as if the US has a special role in history as a force for good. In a speech on US foreign policy, at West Point on May 28, 2014, Obama bluntly stated:

"In fact, by most measures, America has rarely been stronger relative to the rest of the world. Those who argue otherwise - who suggest that America is in decline or has seen its global leadership slip away are misreading history. Our military has no peer…. I believe in American exceptionalism with every fiber of my being."

In his book, Democracy In America, Frenchman Alexis de Tocqueville was lyrical in his propaganda-like adulation of American exceptionalism, defining it almost as divine providence.

"When the earth was given to men by the Creator, the earth was inexhaustible. But men were weak and ignorant, and when they had learned to take advantage of the treasures which it contained, they already covered its surface and were soon obliged to earn by the sword an asylum for repose and freedom. Just then North America was discovered, as if it had been kept in reserve by the Deity and had risen from beneath the waters of the deluge", wrote de Tocqueville.

This notion, originated by the French author, and amplified ever since, which defined the US as the "divine gift" of a moral and virtuous land, is a cruel fairy tale. It is mainly convenient to ease up America's profound guilt. After all, the brutal birth of this nation took place under the curse of two cardinal sins: the theft of Native American lands after committing a genocide of their population; and the hideous crime of slavery, with slaves building an immense wealth for the few, in a new feudal system, with their sweat, tears and blood.

[May 10, 2015] Battle Tested, Ukraine Troops Now Get U.S. Basic Training

May 09, 2015 | NYTimes.com

YAVORIV, Ukraine - The exercise, one of the most fundamental in the military handbook, came off without a hitch. A soldier carrying a length of rope and a grappling hook ran to within 20 feet or so of a coil of concertina wire and stopped.

For a moment, he twirled the rope in his hands like a lasso, then threw the hook over the wire, and tugged hard, testing for explosives.

When nothing happened he signaled two comrades, who ran up and started snipping the wire with cutters.

Although this was a typical training exercise for raw recruits in an elemental soldierly skill, there was nothing typical about the scene. Far from enlistees, these soldiers were regulars in the Ukrainian National Guard, presumably battle-hardened after months on the front lines in eastern Ukraine. And the trainer was an American military instructor, drilling troops for battle with the United States' former Cold War foe, Russia, and Russian-backed separatists.

... ... ...

The training included simulations of a suspect's detention. Credit Brendan Hoffman for The New York Times

The course on cutting wire is one of 63 classes of remedial military instruction being provided by 300 United States Army trainers in three consecutive two-month courses.

Here in western Ukraine, they are far from the fighting, and their job is to instill some basic military know-how in Ukrainian soldiers, who the trainers have discovered are woefully unprepared. The largely unschooled troops are learning such basic skills as how to use an encrypted walkie-talkie; how to break open a door with a sledgehammer and a crowbar; and how to drag a wounded colleague across a field while holding a rifle at the ready.

... ... ...

The United States is also providing advanced courses for military professionals known as forward observers - the ones who call in targets - to improve the accuracy of artillery fire, making it more lethal for the enemy and less so for civilians.

Photo

The training also included simulations of a home raid. Credit Brendan Hoffman for The New York Times

Oleksandr I. Leshchenko, the deputy director for training in the National Guard, was somewhat skeptical about the value of the training, saying that "99 percent" of the men in the course had already been in combat.

... ... ...

American officers described the course work as equivalent to the latter months of basic training in the United States. The courses will train 705 Ukrainian soldiers at a cost of $19 million over six months. The Ukrainian National Guard is rotating from the front what units it can spare for the training. American instructors intend to recommend top performers to serve as trainers within other Ukrainian units, and in this way spread the instruction more broadly.

... ... ...

[May 10, 2015] The New York Times does its government s bidding Here s what you re not being told about US troops in Ukraine

Notable quotes:
"... American soldiers in Ukraine, American media not saying much about it. Two facts. ..."
"... Americans are being led blindfolded very near the brink of war with Russia. ..."
"... Don't need a war to get what done, Mr. President? This is our question. Then this one: Washington is going to stop at exactly what as it manipulates its latest set of puppets in disadvantaged countries, this time pretending there is absolutely nothing thoughtless or miscalculated about doing so on Russia's historically sensitive western border? ..."
"... And our policy cliques are willing to go all the way to war for this? As of mid-April, when the 173rd Airborne Brigade started arriving in Ukraine, it looks as if we are on notice in this respect. ..."
"... Take a deep breath and consider that 1,000 American folks, as Obama will surely get around to calling them, are conducting military drills with troops drawn partly from Nazi and crypto-Nazi paramilitary groups . Sorry, I cannot add anything more to this paragraph. Speechless. ..."
"... Part of me still thinks war with Russia seems a far-fetched proposition. But here's the thing: It is even more far-fetched to deny the gravity of this moment for all its horrific, playing-with-fire potential. ..."
"... Last December, John Pilger, the noted Australian journalist now in London, said in a speech that the Ukraine crisis had become the most extreme news blackout he had seen his entire career. I agree and now need no more proof as to whether it is a matter of intent or ineptitude. (Now that I think of it, it is both in many cases.) ..."
"... In the sixth paragraph we get this: "Last week, Russia charged that a modest program to train Ukraine's national guard that 300 American troops are carrying out in western Ukraine could 'destabilize the situation.'" Apoplectically speaking: Goddamn it, there is nothing modest about U.S. troops operating on Ukrainian soil, and it is self-evidently destabilizing. It is an obvious provocation, a point the policy cliques in Washington cannot have missed. ..."
"... The Poroshenko government contrives to assign Russia the blame, but one can safely ignore this. Extreme right members of parliament have been more to the point. After a prominent editor named Oles Buzyna was fatally shot outside his home several weeks ago, a lawmaker named Boris Filatov told colleagues, "One more piece of shit has been eliminated." From another named Irina Farion, this: Death will neutralize the dirt this shit has spilled. Such people go to history's sewers." ..."
"... He was a vigorous opponent of American adventurism abroad, consistent and reasoned even as resistance to both grew in his later years. By the time he was finished he was published and read far more outside America than in it. ..."
May 09, 2015 | NYTimes.com

Reprinted from May 07, 2015 article at Salon.com

As of mid-April, when a Pentagon flack announced it in Kiev, and as barely reported in American media, U.S. troops are now operating openly in Ukraine.

Now there is a lead I have long dreaded writing but suspected from the first that one day I would. Do not take a moment to think about this. Take many moments. We all need to. We find ourselves in grave circumstances this spring.

At first I thought I had written what newspaper people call a double-barreled lead: American soldiers in Ukraine, American media not saying much about it. Two facts.

Wrong. There is one fact now, and it is this: Americans are being led blindfolded very near the brink of war with Russia.

One cannot predict there will be one. And, of course, right-thinking people hope things will never come to one. In March, President Obama dismissed any such idea as if to suggest it was silly. "They're not interested in a military confrontation with us," Obama said of the Russians-wisely. Then he added, unwisely: "We don't need a war."

Don't need a war to get what done, Mr. President? This is our question. Then this one: Washington is going to stop at exactly what as it manipulates its latest set of puppets in disadvantaged countries, this time pretending there is absolutely nothing thoughtless or miscalculated about doing so on Russia's historically sensitive western border?

The pose of American innocence, tatty and tiresome in the best of times, is getting dangerous once again.

The source of worry now is that we do not have an answer to the second question. The project is plain: Advance NATO the rest of the way through Eastern Europe, probably with the intent of eventually destabilizing Moscow. The stooges now installed in Kiev are getting everything ready for the corporations eager to exploit Ukrainian resources and labor.

And our policy cliques are willing to go all the way to war for this? As of mid-April, when the 173rd Airborne Brigade started arriving in Ukraine, it looks as if we are on notice in this respect.

In the past there were a few vague mentions of an American military presence in Ukraine that was to be in place by this spring, if I recall correctly. These would have been last autumn. By then, there were also reports, unconfirmed, that some troops and a lot of spooks were already there as advisers but not acknowledged.

Then in mid-March President Poroshenko introduced a bill authorizing-as required by law-foreign troops to operate on Ukrainian soil. There was revealing detail, according to Russia Insider, a free-standing website in Moscow founded and run by Charles Bausman, an American with an uncanny ability to gather and publish pertinent information.

"According to the draft law, Ukraine plans three Ukrainian-American command post exercises, Fearless Guardian 2015, Sea Breeze 2015 and Saber Guardian/Rapid Trident 2015," the publication reported, "and two Ukrainian-Polish exercises, Secure Skies 2015, and Law and Order 2015, for this year."

This is a lot of dry-run maneuvering, if you ask me. Poroshenko's law allows for up to 1,000 American troops to participate in each of these exercises, alongside an equal number of Ukrainian "National Guardsmen," and we will insist on the quotation marks when referring to this gruesome lot, about whom more in a minute.

Take a deep breath and consider that 1,000 American folks, as Obama will surely get around to calling them, are conducting military drills with troops drawn partly from Nazi and crypto-Nazi paramilitary groups . Sorry, I cannot add anything more to this paragraph. Speechless.

It was a month to the day after Poroshenko's bill went to parliament that the Pentagon spokesman in Kiev announced-to a room empty of American correspondents, we are to assume-that troops from the 173rd Airborne were just then arriving to train none other than "National Guardsmen." This training includes "classes in war-fighting functions," as the operations officer, Maj. Jose Mendez, blandly put it at the time.

The spokesman's number was "about 300," and I never like "about" when these people are describing deployments. This is how it always begins, we will all recall. The American presence in Vietnam began with a handful of advisers who arrived in September 1950. (Remember MAAG, the Military Assistance Advisory Group?)

Part of me still thinks war with Russia seems a far-fetched proposition. But here's the thing: It is even more far-fetched to deny the gravity of this moment for all its horrific, playing-with-fire potential.

I am getting on to apoplectic as to the American media's abject irresponsibility in not covering this stuff adequately. To leave these events unreported is outright lying by omission. Nobody's news judgment can be so bad as to argue this is not a story.

Last December, John Pilger, the noted Australian journalist now in London, said in a speech that the Ukraine crisis had become the most extreme news blackout he had seen his entire career. I agree and now need no more proof as to whether it is a matter of intent or ineptitude. (Now that I think of it, it is both in many cases.)

To cross the "i"s and dot the "t"s, as I prefer to do, the Times did make two mentions of the American troops. One was the day of the announcement, a brief piece on an inside page, datelined Washington. Here we get our code word for this caper: It will be "modest" in every mention.

The second was in an April 23 story by Michael Gordon, the State Department correspondent. The head was, "Putin Bolsters His Forces Near Ukraine, U.S. Says." Read the thing here.

The story line is a doozy: Putin-not "the Russians" or "Moscow," of course-is again behaving aggressively by amassing troops-how many, exactly where and how we know is never explained-along his border with Ukraine. Inside his border, that is. This is the story. This is what we mean by aggression these days.

In the sixth paragraph we get this: "Last week, Russia charged that a modest program to train Ukraine's national guard that 300 American troops are carrying out in western Ukraine could 'destabilize the situation.'" Apoplectically speaking: Goddamn it, there is nothing modest about U.S. troops operating on Ukrainian soil, and it is self-evidently destabilizing. It is an obvious provocation, a point the policy cliques in Washington cannot have missed.

At this point, I do not see how anyone can stand against the argument-mine for some time-that Putin has shown exemplary restraint in this crisis. In a reversal of roles and hemispheres, Washington would have a lot more than air defense systems and troops of whatever number on the border in question.

The Times coverage of Ukraine, to continue briefly in this line, starts to remind me of something I.F. Stone once said about the Washington Post: The fun of reading it, the honored man observed, is that you never know where you'll find a page one story.

In the Times' case, you never know if you will find it at all.

Have you read much about the wave of political assassinations that erupted in Kiev in mid-April? Worry not. No one else has either-not in American media. Not a word in the Times.

The number my sources give me, and I cannot confirm it, is a dozen so far-12 to 13 to be precise. On the record, we have 10 who can be named and identified as political allies of Viktor Yanukovych, the president ousted last year, opponents of a drastic rupture in Ukraine's historic relations to Russia, people who favored marking the 70th anniversary of the Soviet defeat of the Nazis-death-deserving idea, this-and critics of the new regime's corruptions and dependence on violent far-right extremists.

These were all highly visible politicians, parliamentarians and journalists. They have been murdered by small groups of these extremists, according to reports readily available in non-American media. In my read, the killers may have the same semi-official ties to government that the paramilitary death squads in 1970s Argentina-famously recognizable in their Ford Falcons-had with Videla and the colonels.

The Poroshenko government contrives to assign Russia the blame, but one can safely ignore this. Extreme right members of parliament have been more to the point. After a prominent editor named Oles Buzyna was fatally shot outside his home several weeks ago, a lawmaker named Boris Filatov told colleagues, "One more piece of shit has been eliminated." From another named Irina Farion, this: Death will neutralize the dirt this shit has spilled. Such people go to history's sewers."

Kindly place, Kiev's parliament under this new crowd. Washington must be proud, having backed yet another right-wing, anti-democratic, rights-trampling regime that does what it says.

And our media must be silent, of course. It can be no other way. Gutless hacks: You bet I am angry.

* * *

I end this week's column with a tribute.

A moment of observance, any kind, for William Pfaff, who died at 86 in Paris late last week. The appreciative obituary by the Times' Marlise Simons is here.

Pfaff was the most sophisticated foreign affairs commentator of the 20th century's second half and the first 15 years of this one. He was a great influence among colleagues (myself included) and put countless readers in a lot of places in the picture over many decades. He was a vigorous opponent of American adventurism abroad, consistent and reasoned even as resistance to both grew in his later years. By the time he was finished he was published and read far more outside America than in it.

Pfaff was a conservative man in some respects, which is not uncommon among America's American critics. In this I put him in the file with Henry Steele Commager, C. Vann Woodward, William Appleman Williams, and among those writing now, Andrew Bacevich. He was not a scholar, as these writers were or are, supporting a point I have long made: Not all intellectuals are scholars, and not all scholars are intellectuals.

Pfaff's books will live on and I commend them: "Barbarian Sentiments," "The Wrath of Nations," "The Bullet's Song," and his last, "The Irony of Manifest Destiny," are the ones on my shelf.

Farewell from a friend, Bill.

Patrick Smith is the author of "Time No Longer: Americans After the American Century." He was the International Herald Tribune's bureau chief in Hong Kong and then Tokyo from 1985 to 1992. During this time he also wrote "Letter from Tokyo" for the New Yorker. He is the author of four previous books and has contributed frequently to the New York Times, the Nation, the Washington Quarterly, and other publications. Follow him on Twitter, @thefloutist. More Patrick L. Smith.

[May 10, 2015] The New York Times does its government s bidding Here s what you re not being told about US troops in Ukraine

Notable quotes:
"... American soldiers in Ukraine, American media not saying much about it. Two facts. ..."
"... Americans are being led blindfolded very near the brink of war with Russia. ..."
"... Don't need a war to get what done, Mr. President? This is our question. Then this one: Washington is going to stop at exactly what as it manipulates its latest set of puppets in disadvantaged countries, this time pretending there is absolutely nothing thoughtless or miscalculated about doing so on Russia's historically sensitive western border? ..."
"... And our policy cliques are willing to go all the way to war for this? As of mid-April, when the 173rd Airborne Brigade started arriving in Ukraine, it looks as if we are on notice in this respect. ..."
"... Take a deep breath and consider that 1,000 American folks, as Obama will surely get around to calling them, are conducting military drills with troops drawn partly from Nazi and crypto-Nazi paramilitary groups . Sorry, I cannot add anything more to this paragraph. Speechless. ..."
"... Part of me still thinks war with Russia seems a far-fetched proposition. But here's the thing: It is even more far-fetched to deny the gravity of this moment for all its horrific, playing-with-fire potential. ..."
"... Last December, John Pilger, the noted Australian journalist now in London, said in a speech that the Ukraine crisis had become the most extreme news blackout he had seen his entire career. I agree and now need no more proof as to whether it is a matter of intent or ineptitude. (Now that I think of it, it is both in many cases.) ..."
"... In the sixth paragraph we get this: "Last week, Russia charged that a modest program to train Ukraine's national guard that 300 American troops are carrying out in western Ukraine could 'destabilize the situation.'" Apoplectically speaking: Goddamn it, there is nothing modest about U.S. troops operating on Ukrainian soil, and it is self-evidently destabilizing. It is an obvious provocation, a point the policy cliques in Washington cannot have missed. ..."
"... The Poroshenko government contrives to assign Russia the blame, but one can safely ignore this. Extreme right members of parliament have been more to the point. After a prominent editor named Oles Buzyna was fatally shot outside his home several weeks ago, a lawmaker named Boris Filatov told colleagues, "One more piece of shit has been eliminated." From another named Irina Farion, this: Death will neutralize the dirt this shit has spilled. Such people go to history's sewers." ..."
"... He was a vigorous opponent of American adventurism abroad, consistent and reasoned even as resistance to both grew in his later years. By the time he was finished he was published and read far more outside America than in it. ..."
May 09, 2015 | NYTimes.com

Reprinted from May 07, 2015 article at Salon.com

As of mid-April, when a Pentagon flack announced it in Kiev, and as barely reported in American media, U.S. troops are now operating openly in Ukraine.

Now there is a lead I have long dreaded writing but suspected from the first that one day I would. Do not take a moment to think about this. Take many moments. We all need to. We find ourselves in grave circumstances this spring.

At first I thought I had written what newspaper people call a double-barreled lead: American soldiers in Ukraine, American media not saying much about it. Two facts.

Wrong. There is one fact now, and it is this: Americans are being led blindfolded very near the brink of war with Russia.

One cannot predict there will be one. And, of course, right-thinking people hope things will never come to one. In March, President Obama dismissed any such idea as if to suggest it was silly. "They're not interested in a military confrontation with us," Obama said of the Russians-wisely. Then he added, unwisely: "We don't need a war."

Don't need a war to get what done, Mr. President? This is our question. Then this one: Washington is going to stop at exactly what as it manipulates its latest set of puppets in disadvantaged countries, this time pretending there is absolutely nothing thoughtless or miscalculated about doing so on Russia's historically sensitive western border?

The pose of American innocence, tatty and tiresome in the best of times, is getting dangerous once again.

The source of worry now is that we do not have an answer to the second question. The project is plain: Advance NATO the rest of the way through Eastern Europe, probably with the intent of eventually destabilizing Moscow. The stooges now installed in Kiev are getting everything ready for the corporations eager to exploit Ukrainian resources and labor.

And our policy cliques are willing to go all the way to war for this? As of mid-April, when the 173rd Airborne Brigade started arriving in Ukraine, it looks as if we are on notice in this respect.

In the past there were a few vague mentions of an American military presence in Ukraine that was to be in place by this spring, if I recall correctly. These would have been last autumn. By then, there were also reports, unconfirmed, that some troops and a lot of spooks were already there as advisers but not acknowledged.

Then in mid-March President Poroshenko introduced a bill authorizing-as required by law-foreign troops to operate on Ukrainian soil. There was revealing detail, according to Russia Insider, a free-standing website in Moscow founded and run by Charles Bausman, an American with an uncanny ability to gather and publish pertinent information.

"According to the draft law, Ukraine plans three Ukrainian-American command post exercises, Fearless Guardian 2015, Sea Breeze 2015 and Saber Guardian/Rapid Trident 2015," the publication reported, "and two Ukrainian-Polish exercises, Secure Skies 2015, and Law and Order 2015, for this year."

This is a lot of dry-run maneuvering, if you ask me. Poroshenko's law allows for up to 1,000 American troops to participate in each of these exercises, alongside an equal number of Ukrainian "National Guardsmen," and we will insist on the quotation marks when referring to this gruesome lot, about whom more in a minute.

Take a deep breath and consider that 1,000 American folks, as Obama will surely get around to calling them, are conducting military drills with troops drawn partly from Nazi and crypto-Nazi paramilitary groups . Sorry, I cannot add anything more to this paragraph. Speechless.

It was a month to the day after Poroshenko's bill went to parliament that the Pentagon spokesman in Kiev announced-to a room empty of American correspondents, we are to assume-that troops from the 173rd Airborne were just then arriving to train none other than "National Guardsmen." This training includes "classes in war-fighting functions," as the operations officer, Maj. Jose Mendez, blandly put it at the time.

The spokesman's number was "about 300," and I never like "about" when these people are describing deployments. This is how it always begins, we will all recall. The American presence in Vietnam began with a handful of advisers who arrived in September 1950. (Remember MAAG, the Military Assistance Advisory Group?)

Part of me still thinks war with Russia seems a far-fetched proposition. But here's the thing: It is even more far-fetched to deny the gravity of this moment for all its horrific, playing-with-fire potential.

I am getting on to apoplectic as to the American media's abject irresponsibility in not covering this stuff adequately. To leave these events unreported is outright lying by omission. Nobody's news judgment can be so bad as to argue this is not a story.

Last December, John Pilger, the noted Australian journalist now in London, said in a speech that the Ukraine crisis had become the most extreme news blackout he had seen his entire career. I agree and now need no more proof as to whether it is a matter of intent or ineptitude. (Now that I think of it, it is both in many cases.)

To cross the "i"s and dot the "t"s, as I prefer to do, the Times did make two mentions of the American troops. One was the day of the announcement, a brief piece on an inside page, datelined Washington. Here we get our code word for this caper: It will be "modest" in every mention.

The second was in an April 23 story by Michael Gordon, the State Department correspondent. The head was, "Putin Bolsters His Forces Near Ukraine, U.S. Says." Read the thing here.

The story line is a doozy: Putin-not "the Russians" or "Moscow," of course-is again behaving aggressively by amassing troops-how many, exactly where and how we know is never explained-along his border with Ukraine. Inside his border, that is. This is the story. This is what we mean by aggression these days.

In the sixth paragraph we get this: "Last week, Russia charged that a modest program to train Ukraine's national guard that 300 American troops are carrying out in western Ukraine could 'destabilize the situation.'" Apoplectically speaking: Goddamn it, there is nothing modest about U.S. troops operating on Ukrainian soil, and it is self-evidently destabilizing. It is an obvious provocation, a point the policy cliques in Washington cannot have missed.

At this point, I do not see how anyone can stand against the argument-mine for some time-that Putin has shown exemplary restraint in this crisis. In a reversal of roles and hemispheres, Washington would have a lot more than air defense systems and troops of whatever number on the border in question.

The Times coverage of Ukraine, to continue briefly in this line, starts to remind me of something I.F. Stone once said about the Washington Post: The fun of reading it, the honored man observed, is that you never know where you'll find a page one story.

In the Times' case, you never know if you will find it at all.

Have you read much about the wave of political assassinations that erupted in Kiev in mid-April? Worry not. No one else has either-not in American media. Not a word in the Times.

The number my sources give me, and I cannot confirm it, is a dozen so far-12 to 13 to be precise. On the record, we have 10 who can be named and identified as political allies of Viktor Yanukovych, the president ousted last year, opponents of a drastic rupture in Ukraine's historic relations to Russia, people who favored marking the 70th anniversary of the Soviet defeat of the Nazis-death-deserving idea, this-and critics of the new regime's corruptions and dependence on violent far-right extremists.

These were all highly visible politicians, parliamentarians and journalists. They have been murdered by small groups of these extremists, according to reports readily available in non-American media. In my read, the killers may have the same semi-official ties to government that the paramilitary death squads in 1970s Argentina-famously recognizable in their Ford Falcons-had with Videla and the colonels.

The Poroshenko government contrives to assign Russia the blame, but one can safely ignore this. Extreme right members of parliament have been more to the point. After a prominent editor named Oles Buzyna was fatally shot outside his home several weeks ago, a lawmaker named Boris Filatov told colleagues, "One more piece of shit has been eliminated." From another named Irina Farion, this: Death will neutralize the dirt this shit has spilled. Such people go to history's sewers."

Kindly place, Kiev's parliament under this new crowd. Washington must be proud, having backed yet another right-wing, anti-democratic, rights-trampling regime that does what it says.

And our media must be silent, of course. It can be no other way. Gutless hacks: You bet I am angry.

* * *

I end this week's column with a tribute.

A moment of observance, any kind, for William Pfaff, who died at 86 in Paris late last week. The appreciative obituary by the Times' Marlise Simons is here.

Pfaff was the most sophisticated foreign affairs commentator of the 20th century's second half and the first 15 years of this one. He was a great influence among colleagues (myself included) and put countless readers in a lot of places in the picture over many decades. He was a vigorous opponent of American adventurism abroad, consistent and reasoned even as resistance to both grew in his later years. By the time he was finished he was published and read far more outside America than in it.

Pfaff was a conservative man in some respects, which is not uncommon among America's American critics. In this I put him in the file with Henry Steele Commager, C. Vann Woodward, William Appleman Williams, and among those writing now, Andrew Bacevich. He was not a scholar, as these writers were or are, supporting a point I have long made: Not all intellectuals are scholars, and not all scholars are intellectuals.

Pfaff's books will live on and I commend them: "Barbarian Sentiments," "The Wrath of Nations," "The Bullet's Song," and his last, "The Irony of Manifest Destiny," are the ones on my shelf.

Farewell from a friend, Bill.

Patrick Smith is the author of "Time No Longer: Americans After the American Century." He was the International Herald Tribune's bureau chief in Hong Kong and then Tokyo from 1985 to 1992. During this time he also wrote "Letter from Tokyo" for the New Yorker. He is the author of four previous books and has contributed frequently to the New York Times, the Nation, the Washington Quarterly, and other publications. Follow him on Twitter, @thefloutist. More Patrick L. Smith.

U.S. Hasn't Helped Kiev's "Endless Dysfunction" by Michael S. Rozeff

Criticism of Kiev's administration and its war against Donbas likewise strikes some as pro-Russian. This too is a false conclusion. The making of war by any state against breakaway regions or regions seeking autonomy or constitutional changes or secession is anti-libertarian.
LewRockwell.com

Balazs Jarabik, who is associated with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and who focuses on Ukraine, has an article titled "Ukraine: The War Must Go On?". It's a pertinent article because both sides are re-arming and both sides are more skilled now at war. Renewed fighting, if serious war breaks out again, will be more devastating than the earlier engagements. It will likely enter new areas and, in the process, undermine Ukraine altogether.

Jarabik writes "As terrible as it sounds, Kyiv's endless dysfunction is the Kremlin's most powerful ally in the current crisis-a point that is glossed over in Western policy debates on sending lethal aid to Ukraine."

Critics of the libertarian positions on Ukraine should read and heed what the non-libertarian Jarabik says about Kiev and Ukraine. U.S. and NATO aid, bank financing, training and military advice are not helping Ukrainians. Quite the opposite.

The libertarian refrain calling for U.S. disengagement from Ukraine (and other of the Empire's venues) strikes some as being either pro-Russian or not anti-Russian enough. This is a false conclusion that doesn't follow from a non-interventionist stance. It only follows from a non-libertarian perspective of supposing that the U.S. should be helping Ukraine achieve independence from Russian pressures. But such so-called help is destroying Ukraine and promises worse to come.

Criticism of Kiev's administration and its war against Donbas likewise strikes some as pro-Russian. This too is a false conclusion. The making of war by any state against breakaway regions or regions seeking autonomy or constitutional changes or secession is anti-libertarian.

Both U.S. disengagement from Kiev and criticism of Kiev's war-making are policies that will help, not harm, ordinary Ukrainians. Sons will not be drafted, ill-trained, ill-equipped and sent into unwinnable and destructive wars. The government won't go bankrupt in the process. Huge debts won't be levied on generations of Ukrainians. The currency won't crash, as it has, destroying the wealth of anyone holding it, small savers or holders of debt denominated in that currency. Resources can be put toward peaceful purposes. Similarly, people in Donbas won't face the severe destruction wrought by war. Refugees can come home. People won't be driven from their homes. Population centers, ranging from villages to major cities, won't be shelled.

The war-making and other related decisions are promoted by the U.S. and NATO. The U.S. is re-arming one side and improving the weaponry. The Russians are re-arming the other side, and that side too will bring in new ways of fighting. The level of destructiveness can only escalate as a consequence of a U.S. and Kiev decision to bring Donbas back into Ukraine by military means.

Libertarian calls for the U.S. completely out of Ukraine are for the good of Ukrainians themselves, although surely not all of them. This policy doesn't satisfy Ukrainian nationalists who insist on union of west and east, come hell or high water. Hell it may be.

[Apr 22, 2015] M of A - Ukraine Both Sides Touched By NATO Related Murder Of The Other Side

Apr 22, 2015 | moonofalabama.org

The Washington Post's Michael Birnbaum invented a new funny way to equalized victims and perpetrators of serious crimes:

MOSCOW - A pro-Russian Ukrainian journalist was gunned down in Kiev on Thursday, authorities said, a day after a Ukrainian politician supporting Moscow was found dead.

The killing of Oles Buzyna, 45, raised fears of a new wave of back-and-forth violence in the streets of Ukraine after a string of unsolved deaths that has touched both sides of the conflict between Ukraine's Western-allied government and pro-Moscow separatists.

Indeed the "unsolved deaths" "touched both sides" with eleven people on one side getting murdered while the other side covered up these murders as "suicides" and very likely also provided the killers.

Eight politicians of the Party of Region of former president Yanukovich, ousted in a U.S. inspired coup, were killed as were three journalists un-sympathetic to the now ruling coup government.

There is some curious connection between some of the recent killings and NATO. As RB at NiqNaq provides (recommended):

On Apr 14, a profile of Oles' Buzina was added to https://psb4ukr.org/ site (where Ukrainian government encourages people to fink the authorities on the people suspected of separatism); on Apr 15, Oles' Buzina was killed near his home with 4 shots. I (my correspondent – RB) looked up the Web address where they posted Buzina's address, and found that it's hosted on a NATO server.

The Niqnaq post provides details and screenshots demonstrating the connection to NATO. (A short take is also here.) I was myself researching the issue for MoA when I found that Niqnaq post and I can confirm the findings and add a bit.

Two names and personal data of persons recently assassinated in Ukraine were posted on a "nationalist" website shortly before those persons were killed. That website, screenshot) screenshot), is headlined:

"Peacemaker"

RESEARCH CENTRE FEATURES OF CRIMES AGAINST UKRAINE'S NATIONAL SECURITY, PEACE, SECURITY AND HUMANITY international law
Information for law enforcement authorities and special services about pro-Russian terrorists, separatists, mercenaries, war criminals, and murderers.

Next to some news pieces the site carries a list for download with some 7,700 names of "saboteurs" and "terrorists".

On a first view the name "psb4ukr.org" is anonymously registered through the U.S. company Wild West Domains.

A "traceroute" command shows that Internet Protocol requests to the server "psb4ukr.org" end in a datacenter in Dallas, Texas at dallas-ipc.com and the IP number 208.115.243.222.

A "nslookup" command with the input "psb4ukr.org" confirms in its output the registered IP Number to be "208.115.243.222" (screenshot).

A reverse "nslookup" command with the input "208.115.243.222" provides the output "psb4ukr.nato.int". (screenshot).

"nato.int" is the Internet domain namespace registered and reserved for NATO. Why is a server for a website which is hunting for dissidents in Ukraine - some of whom have been killed - registered within the NATO Internet namespace?

After some additional research we find that the non-anonymous registration to "psb4ukr.org" is to one Vladimir Kolesnikov, 98 Lenin St, Velyka Oleksandrivka, Kyiv Oblast, Ukraine.

Further searching for Vladimir Kolesnikov we find that Mr. Kolesnikov has registered several other websites through Limestone Networks, Inc in Dallas, Texas.

Some of these website seem to be concerned with crypto payment, teletraining and unrelated stuff. Some others are related to the nasty "nationalist" side of the Ukraine conflict. Operativ.info asks for tip offs about "saboteurs" and "terrorists" and their operations while informnapalm.org is a general "nationalist" news collection.

There is no hint of any NATO-relation in these other sides. A reverse nslookup like the one that shows a relation like between "psb4ukr.org" and "psb4ukr.nato.int" does not deliver such results for the other website registered to Mr. Kolesnikov.

One possible explanation for the "psb4ukr.nato.int" lookup result might be that the website was originally build or tested within the NATO namespace and later transferred outside without cleaning up some of the original name references.

Posted by b on April 17, 2015 at 03:06 PM | Permalink

james | Apr 17, 2015 5:45:27 PM | 1

thanks b.. any connection to nato is really riveting if true.. the fact all the people murdered are opposed to the present gang in kiev speaks volumes as well.. i hope some western msm will pick some of this up, but i highly doubt it.. it will be more bs like the wapo is famous for.. spewing propaganda 24/7, these media outlets make the prvada of previous times look like amateurs..

jfl | Apr 17, 2015 6:33:22 PM | 2

Excellent work, b. It is true that the MSM sill never publish anything like this ... but it is also true that the 'market' for news has been bifurcated at this point : those who want to know the truth are engaged in the search for it on their own and those who definitely do NOT want to know the truth are reading, viewing the MSM.

Attending to the MSM has become an act of complicity with the crimes of the empire in itself.

JerseyJeffersonian | Apr 17, 2015 6:43:55 PM | 3

So, death squads on the menu?

Ah, takes me back to those golden times in Iraq, El Salvador...

Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 17, 2015 11:55:44 PM | 5

I've come to appreciate the value of the "both sides" meme.

It's a 24ct guarantee that USrael or one of their "good friends" has been caught perpetrating inexcusable atrocities, upon civilians, which need to be urgently diluted.

The "Israelis" have turned it into an art form - an absolute necessity given that ALL the victims of the Shitty Little Country's insane anti-Palestinian hubris have been civilians.

It's quite clever in a cowardly, sneaky, "Israeli" kind of way...

Fete | Apr 18, 2015 12:41:56 AM | 604/17/2015 19:57

Russian Spring

Commenting an appeal of Donbass community to the guarantors of the Minsk agreements, Presidents of Russia and France, Vladimir Putin and François Hollande as well as Angela Merkel, the Chancellor of Germany, the Chairman of Peoples Council of Donetsk Republic Andrey Purgin assumed that today's Kiev moves toward Ukrainian Nazism.

"Mass arrests and intimidation are common. Those who disagree to live with the Ukrainian ethnic nazism are prosecuted. The most active ones are incarcerated", asserted Purgin

According to him, thousands are jailed for their political convictions.

"Of course, there are calls to (international) community, to Merkel, Europe to interfer. Unfortunately, those live in framework of different (double) standards and are not going to do anything. Instead, they call to yield to Ukraine, where arrests and burning houses are taking place", added Purgin.

@b

Why is a server for a website which is hunting for dissidents in Ukraine - some of whom have been killed - registered within the NATO Internet namespace?

Russian Defense Minister summed it up very well, at Moscow's annual security conference.

"The United States and its allies have crossed all possible lines in their drive to bring Kiev into their orbit..."

http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/04/16/us-ukraine-crisis-russia-idUSKBN0N70W820150416

Lone Wolf | Apr 18, 2015 2:05:47 AM | 7

JerseyJeffersonian@3 is right on target reminding us of the infamous "Death Squads" in El Salvador and Iraq. Targeting of opposition figures by parallel security forces killing not-so anonymously, is an integral part of any regime hell-bent on imposing by force a quasi-fascist form of government.

The purpose is to inflict terror on a massive scale, a psychological war that aims at paralyzing others from opposing the regime. It is the ABC of any counterinsurgency manual, and it clearly shows the hand of the CIA behind the systematic killing of Yanukovich allies, perceived or real pro-Russian individuals/organizations/regional or city governments, as it happened recently in Kharkov, and a couple of days ago in Odessa.

This is lustration on a higher level, not just firing from government posts all of those considered "opposition," not enough for the Ukrainian neo-nazis, they have to be physically eliminated. As bastard children of nazi ideologues, they have to follow their German masters in their "purification" of society (lustration from Latin = purification), cleansing it from any elements that could endanger the "purity" of their new fascist dystopia.

The WaPo, a mouthpiece of Neoconland/Deep State, is an accomplice to murder not only in Ukraine, and has played a crucial role white-washing the crimes of the criminal Kiev junta from day one. Shame on you, Michael Birnbaum, you're justifying the slaughter of innocents just to keep a miserable job writing horseshit, and killing them a second time with your blatant lies.

CTuttle | Apr 18, 2015 2:23:51 AM | 8

Aloha, b...! Salon has a great interview with Stephen Cohen... The New York Times "basically rewrites whatever the Kiev authorities say": Stephen F. Cohen on the U.S./Russia/Ukraine history the media won't tell you

And here's a great article from Jeff Kaye... CIA Intervention in Ukraine Has Been Taking Place for Decades

james @1
i hope some western msm will pick some of this up, but i highly doubt it.

The western msm have picked up on it but to claim that an anti-Kiev oligarch who funded the Party of Regions is killing them off to cover his tracks over that funding.

Posted by: blowback | Apr 18, 2015 8:41:03 AM | 10

An organisation called the 'Ukrainian Insurgent Army' has claimed responsibility for the murders of Chechetov, Peklushenko, Miller, Kalashnikov and Buzina.

https://z5h64q92x9.net/proxy_u/ru-en.en/http/antifashist.com/item/ukrainskaya-povstancheskaya-armiya-vzyala-na-sebya-otvetstvennost-za-rasstrel-buziny-i-kalashnikova.html

Posted by: Yonatan | Apr 18, 2015 9:29:19 AM | 11

CTuttle at 8 --

I second your recommendation. I spotted some short extracts at Russia Insider, and I share their recommendation that you read the whole piece. Here's a small sample, .

Q: In a historical perspective, do you consider Russia justified?

Well, I can't think otherwise. I began warning of such a crisis more than 20 years ago, back in the '90s. I've been saying since February of last year [when Viktor Yanukovich was ousted in Kiev] that the 1990s is when everything went wrong between Russia and the United States and Europe. So you need at least that much history, 25 years. But, of course, it begins even earlier....

Q: I take Kiev's characterization of its war in the eastern sections as an "anti-terrorist campaign" to be one of the most preposterous labels out there right now.

But, then, why did Washington say OK to it? Washington has a say in this. Without Washington, Kiev would be in bankruptcy court and have no military at all. Why didn't Washington say, "Don't call it anti-terrorist?" Because if you call it "anti-terrorism" you can never have negotiations because you don't negotiate with terrorists, you just kill them, a murderous organization with murderous intent....

So the United States has been deeply complicit in the destruction of these eastern cities and peoples....

Ever since the Clinton administration, we've bleated on about the right to protect people who are victims of humanitarian crises. You've got a massive humanitarian crisis in eastern Ukraine.... Where is Samantha Power, the architect of "right to protect?" We have shut our eyes to a humanitarian crisis in which we are deeply complicit. This is what's shameful, whether you like or don't like Putin. It's got nothing to do with Putin. It has to do with the nature of American policy and the nature of Washington-and the nature of the American people, if they tolerate this.

See also his comments on Yeltsin. Increasing ill and under the thumb of the oligarchs, he cozied up to Washington. Cohen reports that Medvedev, a number of years ago, advised that Zyuganov of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation had actually won the election that gave Yeltsin his final term.

Posted by: rufus magister | Apr 18, 2015 11:04:39 AM | 12

Terror in Odessa: mass arrests of protesters: 53 people reported detained at demonstration in support of local autonomy;

New detentions of peaceful protesters in Odessa: 30 people reported detained at Odessa rally for cultural autonomy and a peaceful solution to the civil conflict: "The People's Council [of Bessarabia] is the grassroots, peaceful initiative."

So far the People's Council of Bessarabia is looking like an effort to use what legal space seems to exist under current junta law to organize "within the system," while the Odessa People's Republic appears to be extralegal and separatist. But the reality is that there is no legal space within fascism for any opposition to organize:

Ukrainian Neo-Nazi march in Odessa

Posted by: Vintage Red | Apr 18, 2015 11:43:21 AM | 13

jj, lw, bb at 3, 7 & 10 --

Extrajudicial repression has been a staple of the ruling class since antiquity. See the murder of Tiberius Gracchus in the 2nd. cent. BC. But along with creating "insurgencies" (Nicaragua, Afghanistan) the Amercan Century has really made it one of its art forms. A sort of "Abstract Repressionism;" we're disinclined to think of the human cost, let alone accept responsibility for it.

Fort Russ has this report that the "Ukrainian Insurgent Army" (UPA) claimed responsibility for recent murders of regime opponents. Translator K. Rus says it could either be "the far right taking matters into their hands" or an attempt by the regime to distance itself, after posting the "wanted" notice.

If you want some good fantasy fiction writing, I'd recommend the Kyiv Post's weirdly informative article, Murders of two journalists, ex-lawmaker spook Kyiv. It begins, "The atmosphere was spooky in Kyiv on April 16 as news broke about the murder of a third prominent person in four days." Quite lit'ry, weren't it? It's the Party of Regions, it's the Russian, it's a scheme to disrupt Victory Day.

It goes on to some highly negative spin about Kalashnikov and Buzina, and finishes with short accounts of rash of "suicides" amongst regime opponents.

Meanwhile, repression is spreading in Odessa. A mixed group of local Maidan activists, police, and PravSek militiamen detained protesters. They wanted a free trade zone and were unhappy with utility prices and pensions. A clear and present danger. Whereabouts presently unknown. -- VR at 13, just saw yrs. I'll have to ck'out the NeoNazi bit.

It will be then no suprise that figures close to Poroshenko are arguing for mass internment and deportations for dissenters. The administration itself is advising on how to distort the Second World War for fun and profit. "Current defenders of Ukraine should be considered as successors of the winners over Nazism."

All one can say is, how bizarre!

Posted by: rufus magister | Apr 18, 2015 12:20:55 PM | 14

VR -- well that was depressing. In part 'cause it lead me to what the link called "Drunk With Permissiveness: Nazis Execute Journalist Buzina, Promise New Bloodshed." The page itself is a little more mundane, Ukrainian Insurgent Army Claims Responsibility for Death of Reporter Buzina. It provides further details than the Fort Russ account above.

It links the rise in violence to the recent proclamation of the collaborators as victors over their fascist patrons, taken as a green light for a bit of the ultra-violence. They promise "a ruthless insurgent battle against the traitors of the Ukrainian regime and Moscow henchmen..." They seem as good as their word. Too bad....

Posted by: rufus magister | Apr 18, 2015 12:44:54 PM | 15

Who will rid me of this turbulent priest?

The Thomas a Becket school of oppo neutralization...

Posted by: ǝn⇂ɔ | Apr 18, 2015 12:45:23 PM | 16

Another intresting find..


1. WHOIS dingbatter.com

and you will get:

Admin Name: Ophelia Dingbatter
Admin Organization:
Admin Street: Box B 646
Admin City: Black Diamond
Admin State/Province: Alberta
Admin Postal Code: T0L 0H0
Admin Country: Canada
Admin Phone: +1.4039337890
Admin Phone Ext:
Admin Fax:
Admin Fax Ext:
Admin Email: domreg@webby.com
Registry Tech ID:

2. Tech Name: Helmut Morscher

Tech Organization: Webby Inc
Tech Street: Box 646
Tech City: Black Diamond
Tech State/Province: Alberta
Tech Postal Code: T0L 0H0
Tech Country: Canada
Tech Phone: +1.4039337890
Tech Phone Ext:
Tech Fax:
Tech Fax Ext:
Tech Email: domreg@webby.com
Name Server: NS.WEBBY.COM


3.
Google Helmut Morscher
https://ca.linkedin.com/in/helmutmorscher

"International Media Liaison
Maidan Alliance"

and
"International issues advisor
Maidan web-site"

Posted by: Anonymous | Apr 18, 2015 12:48:32 PM | 17

These incidents are so historically familiar. When reading your article b, I couldn't help thinking about Italy and the murders and terrorism that occurred through out the 1950's to 1980's. Incorrectly, many of our contemporaries believe that the Gladio which was created by NATO, the UK and the US is defunct. As revealed by Professor Daneile Ganser, Gladio is a live and well and operates globally. Yes, NATO is the culprit. Just as it was the instrumental culprit that was used as a tool in Kosovo for US interests. As for the monsters in Kiev, Reinhard Gehlen, one of the Nazi architects of the stay-behind-network would be proud.

Posted by: A.E.W | Apr 18, 2015 1:01:36 PM | 18

en1c at 15 -- Very droll! It's been renamed "plausible deniability" to suite modern sensibilities.

vr at 13 -- I followed your link.

Depressing, in part 'cause I followed this link there, "Drunk With Permissiveness: Nazis Execute Journalist Buzina, Promise New Bloodshed." It provides further details than the Fort Russ item cited at 14. Folks will have to find it on their own, I'm afraid. It wouldn't post my link from Sputnik -- though the link in the preview worked. Others have had that problem.

"We are unfolding a ruthless insurgent battle against the traitors of the Ukrainian regime and Moscow henchmen...." They claim five murders, including Kalashnikov and Buzina. So they look to be as good as their word. Too bad.

Posted by: rufus magister | Apr 18, 2015 1:07:53 PM | 19

@18 Poroshenko will call it Russian propaganda. MSM will just ignore it.

Posted by: dh | Apr 18, 2015 1:32:55 PM | 20

Thank you for your links, CTuttle @ 8. I don't know Stephen Cohen very well, but I took a dislike to Katherine his wife way back when the Nation came out so strongly against Ralph Nader as a candidate, and seeing her on Charlie Rose didn't warm me to her either. There are some folk on the 'left' who need to come right out and admit they have been wrong to endorse anti-common-folk principles in the past, due to the damage they have caused by supporting the oligarchs.

They are taking a page out of Putin's book: he was in government during the Yeltsin era when policies were strongly skewed to get along with US oligarchies and Russia's own. Putin has changed course, no two ways about it, and his people as a consequence love him. I just hope these folk will have the same intention - Katherine, you will have to stop sniping at Ralph if you want us to love you.

Posted by: juliania | Apr 18, 2015 3:45:28 PM | 21

The problem of Ukrainian nationalism is that they do not have "democratic template", heroes of the past were hetmans, otamans and fascists. To be patriotic, you have to be bloody minded. So patriots are murdering enemies of the people, and the West gives green light by giving aid and not raising stink. [disclamer: I do not despise patriotism, but like love and religion, it can motivate excesses including murder, mass murder, lies, mass lies and so on, emotional attachment can be a positive force, but as we know, it is not always the case. Below, "patriot" describes the self-assessment.]

The Newsweek story http://www.newsweek.com/2015/04/17/ukraine-plagued-succession-unlikely-suicides-former-ruling-party-320584.html that b found is extremely symptomatic. American patriots in the media are following the official clues how to cover stories from the confusing lands outside our borders. Apparently, in the case of Ukraine, one has to follow explanations of Ukrainian patriots. And the version plied in Newsweek was that an oligarch, Rinat Akhmetov, is ordering murders of his former confidants and benefactors to "remove witnesses", somehow failing to consider the following clues: murders are being covered up by the current authorities, the minister in charge of police is a fascist (according to Guardian, "there is only one fascist in Ukrainian cabinet"), and Akhmetov is not allied with the current authorities.

Since 1945, members of UPA and related organizations were cooperating with CIA, so when American government want to find reliable familiar faces in Ukraine they will always start with "fascists". In the West (due to the limits of my education, that means USA and UK) one can see somewhat weird disputes if those people are really fascist. In Russia they get "fascist" label automatically, in Poland few would think that "banderowcy" label is any better than "fascist" (for parochial reason, as they murdered ca. 100,000 Poles).

A mixed blessing is that Obama administration is liberal, which apparently translates into "moderate mayhem", contrasting with much more grandiose approach advocated by GOP and neocons (who can be Democrats and Republicans).

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Apr 18, 2015 4:45:25 PM | 22

From article I wrote in 2010:

In 1976, journalist Peter Watson was at a NATO conference in Oslo, when a U.S. Navy psychologist, Dr. Thomas Narut, from the U.S. Naval Hospital in Naples told Watson and New Jersey psychologist Dr. Alfred Zitani, that the Navy sought men to train as assassins in overseas embassies. The following is from the London Sunday Times, "The soldiers who become killers," September 8, 1974, but reproduced from a conspiracy site, as the original, and most references to it, plentiful even when I first read about it some years ago, are limited now to a few dozen conspiracy sites. The story is also told at some length in Watson's book (out of print), War on the Mind: The Military Uses and Abuses of Psychology, published by Basic Books in 1978.
[Narut's] naval work involved establishing how to induce servicemen who ma[y] not be naturally inclined to kill, to do so under certain conditions. When pressed afterwards as to what was meant by "combat readiness units," he explained this included men for commando-type operations and – so he said – for insertion into U.S. embassies under cover, ready to kill in those countries should the need arise. Dr. Narut used the word "hitmen" and "assassin" of these men.

The method, according to Dr. Narut, was to show films specially designed to show people being killed and injured in violent ways. By being acclimated through these films, the men eventually became able to dissociate any feelings from such a situation. Dr. Narut also added that U.S. Naval psychologists specially selected men for these commando tasks, from submarine crews, paratroops, and some were convicted murderers from military prisons. Asked whether he was suggesting that murderers were being released from prisons to become assassins, he replied: "It's happened more than once."

http://pubrecord.org/law/8527/assassination-court-argues-legal/

Posted by: Jeffrey Kaye | Apr 18, 2015 5:23:49 PM | 23

Or how about this:

"For the first time, U.S. officials acknowledge that in 1965 they systematically compiled comprehensive lists of Communist operatives, from top echelons down to village cadres. As many as 5,000 names were furnished to the Indonesian army, and the Americans later checked off the names of those who had been killed or captured, according to the U.S. officials," Kathy Kadane wrote for South Carolina's Herald-Journal on May 19, 1990. [Kadane's article also appeared in the San Francisco Examiner on May 20, 1990, the Washington Post on May 21, 1990, and the Boston Globe on May 23, 1990.]

The Indonesian mass murder program was based in part on experiences gleaned by the CIA in the Philippines. "US military advisers of the Joint US Military Advisory Group (JUSMAG) and the CIA station in Manila designed and led the bloody suppression of the nationalist Hukbong Mapagpalaya ng Bayan," notes Roland G. Simbulan (Covert Operations and the CIA's Hidden History in the Philippines).

http://www.infowars.com/cia-assassination-program-revealed-nothing-new-under-the-sun/

Posted by: Jeffrey Kaye | Apr 18, 2015 5:31:45 PM | 24

@PB #21:

In the West (due to the limits of my education, that means USA and UK) one can see somewhat weird disputes if those people are really fascist. In Russia they get "fascist" label automatically, in Poland few would think that "banderowcy" label is any better than "fascist"

One often hears Novorossiyans and Russians saying that the present Banderites are actually worse than the German Nazis were. I concur with that view.

As for American attitudes to Ukie fascism, that's not hard to understand. All you have to think about is the US training death squads in Central America. Fascist thugs are a tool of US foreign policy, in the same way that Islamist terrorists are. This is now a commonplace in the progressive blogosphere.

A mixed blessing is that Obama administration is liberal, which apparently translates into "moderate mayhem"

I recently ran across an interview witb a Ukrainian political scientist who had to flee to Moscow, in which he said that Europeans are finally cottoning on to the true nature of the Kiev regime, so the US no longer has any reason to restrain the fascists. Hence the recent slew of assassinations and terror. (Sorry, I'm too lazy to dig up the link.)

Posted by: Demian | Apr 18, 2015 7:29:07 PM | 25

@24 You are probably thinking of this...

http://thesaker.is/rostislav-ishchenko-about-the-assassination-of-oles-buzina/

Poles know what's going on too.

http://newcoldwar.org/top-polish-military-advisor-completely-withdraws-his-support-of-ukraine-govt/

Posted by: dh | Apr 18, 2015 7:51:36 PM | 26

@dh #25:

Hey, thanks, man. I forgot it was a video. I just remembered it being in Russian, which confused me. Well worth watching, IMO. Americans have no idea of what Russians think.

To repeat myself, the prevailing Russian view (and with the Internet, the collapse of communism, and Putin's revival of Russia, I think that pretty much all Russians are on the same page except for the 10% or less of the Russians who are "liberals") seems to be that the EU was totally eager to make Ukraine an economic colony of the West, but unlike the US, it does not want war in Ukraine. So the views of the US and the EU on the Ukraine diverge significantly, although net everyone here thinks that. (Of course, Russian policy towards the Ukraine since the coup has been largely predicated on that.)

And thanks for the second link.

His change of view is prompted by the law passed by the Ukrainian Parliament on April 9 glorifying World War.
It was pretty predictable that this would happen eventually. And then it turns out that Poles are saying what Russians have been saying since last May:
Their savagery was beyond human imagination. Nazi Germany did not come up with what those Ukrainians were doing
The American public has no idea of this. (In Europe, it's probably only England and the pesky Balts.)

Posted by: Demian | Apr 18, 2015 9:28:56 PM | 27

"Poles know what's going on" ... it is more complex than that. The government and more established media took very pro-American and anti-Russian perspective. The main opposition party build its current set of slogans around anti-Russian paranoia. That said, in Communist times the issue of the massacres of Poles in Volhynia and other regions with mixed population was almost hidden by the authorities, but now it is common knowledge, and after the law acknowledging the perpetrator as heroes the critique of the government is increasingly mainstream.

In particular, the U-turn of Gen. Skrzypczak is related to perceived "slap in the face". Polish president made a speech to Ukrainian parliament with very warm support, and the law that is extremely irritating to Poles was passed "few hours later", and that was duly noted by leftist opposition in the Parliament. That is not insignificant, because there are good chances that the ruling party will be forced into a coalition with those people.

As nationalists go, Ukrainian ones seem worse than most. The last election were preceded with massive nationwide intimidation campaign and few little massacres. The really have a cult of force and violence, which is reflected in putting boxers in the parliament, and -- surprise, surprise -- getting fist fights in that parliament. The lie compulsively -- recall American senators who got photos taken in Georgia as the proof of Russian columns in Ukraine (see http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/de/Franz_Roubaud._Count_Argutinsky_crossing_the_Caucasian_range._1892.jpg ). They seem to care nothing about the economy, instead, they want to eliminate Communism and Russian language. Poor Ukrainian people seemed to have the choice of hopelessly corrupt and hopelessly insane, so kicking out the previous corrupt lot is not as much of an improvement as Western liberals (and the Russian emigrants who are cited in the mainstream media) perceive.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Apr 18, 2015 9:37:20 PM | 28

@27 Well I should have said 'some' Poles know what's going on. No doubt there is a range of opinion in Poland.

The BBC mentioned the killings albeit with an anti-Russian spin..

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-32361718

Not to worry. Poroshenko has promised a full and thorough investigation.

Posted by: dh | Apr 18, 2015 9:47:11 PM | 29

@rufus magister@14

All one can say is, how bizarre!

Yup, it's a bizarro world out there. It's a total land of confusion

Posted by: Lone Wolf | Apr 18, 2015 10:40:38 PM | 30

dh @25

Thanks for the link to the Polish military adviser. Links like that, where a guy with impeccable 'pro-West' credentials says the right things about Ukraine, can be used to persuade our 'normal, conventional' friends.

LET'S DO IT.

Posted by: fairleft | Apr 19, 2015 12:41:23 AM | 31

Warmongering by one fucking American NATO commander Lt. Gen. Frederick Ben Hodges , an interview across the western compliant media:

Europe faces a 'real threat' from Russia, warns US army commander

Posted by: Oui | Apr 19, 2015 5:57:29 AM | 32

More, Europe has two enemies Russia and ISIS …

European Union Army Plan Aims to Protect Continent from Russia, ISIS

Posted by: Oui | Apr 19, 2015 5:57:59 AM | 33

About European Union Army: there is a whiff of hilarity there. On one hand, the dangers from ISIS and Russia are both quite remote, so they are not treated seriously. The force being pencilled is about as large as the part of Ukrainian army that was encircled in Debaltsevo (should there be a Wiki entry "Debaltsevo debacle"?). Of course, it makes some sense of practicing coordination of national units so it is not a moronic project, but a very smallish project with very outsized among of debates, announcements, analysis and so on.

While Europe has few problems defending itself against some putative onslaught, "projecting force" is another matter. The French can do it in Chad, Mali etc., but how large a European Corps should be to make a difference in conflicts between local nationalists of Georgia and Ukraine with Russian-supported internal opponents? It is like trying to defend Paraguay against the forces of Triple Alliance: we could promise economic sanctions on Argentina, Brasil and Uruguay would they invade Paraguay again, but above all, we would urge Paraguay not to pick fights with the neighbors. (Incidentally, currently Paraguay has a "pro-Western" government, and the three former opponents, "anti-Western", so it is a good case study for comparisons.)

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Apr 19, 2015 9:05:36 AM | 34

side board

On : Eight politicians of the Party of Region of former president Yanukovich, ousted in a U.S. inspired coup, were killed as were three journalists un-sympathetic to the now ruling coup government.

http://original.antiwar.com/justin/2015/04/16/the-murderers-of-kiev/

I suspect there are many names of murdered unknown, unlisted.

Political 'covert' or open, blatant assassinations are unfortunately normal in such situations. Tallying them is arduous, because the murderous impulse is reflected right down into the street, it is not just a State - Power - Corp enterprise.

Viktor, 33, son of Viktor Yanukovych died in March 2015, in an accident on Lake Baikal. His vehicle, with 6 on board, went through the ice, 5 survived, he died. He was the driver.

one garbled article, the telegraph

http://tinyurl.com/ly8csrl

I'm not advocating he should be added to that list. Abandonment (one article suggested that all scrambled to save themselves thus leaving Viktor with no help..) is part of that…

Just to say, that lists like this are dodgy and depend on the MSM, snippets from blogs and the like. Viktor Junior might easily have been included, his death is exremely suspicious, etc. Or it might be considered a typical rich son demise due to hubris, stupidity, assumed invicibility forging ahead in a risky 'sport.'

Posted by: Noirette | Apr 19, 2015 1:05:25 PM | 35

Lone Wolf at 29 -- "Land of Confusion" is a good call, suits the time now better than it did before. Unfortunately the vid you linked to was not available in my loc. But I happen to have it in my browser history, for anyone that missed their daily dose (or yearly allotment) of Genesis. And let me throw in my favorite early Peter Gabriel track, Here Comes the Flood. The problems of global warming give it a different meaning now than in 80's. Best live version, IMHO. "It'll be those who gave their island to survive...."

Posted by: rufus magister | Apr 19, 2015 6:07:59 PM | 36

@rm 35:

Thanks for the link. I couldn't figure out what the song was from the title. Sorry, but Phil Collins' voice always reminds me of Miami Vice.

Speaking of people in music videos with fat faces, consider this (which I have probably posted here before):

Rammstein: America

I don't think that there's much doubt that the Apollo program was America's pinnacle. (As is the case with other great human achievements, it took a German to make it happen.) Compared to when America made it to the moon, the country is now absolutely pitiful and pathetic, and I think everyone understands that on one level or another.

I read up on the Apollo program at Wikipedia recently. It really was a mind boggling achievement. Think of the self-confidence those scientists and engineers must have had to work out such a project, when no one had any experience of being in space. No wonder there is a conspiracy theory that it was all a hoax. (Of course, the Russians deserve some credit even here, since it was they who provided the motivation to the Americans to get to the moon.)

How could America fall so low from such a peak? To hazard a guess, what made the Apollo program possible was the inheritance from the US WW II effort. Not just Werner von Braun, but also central economic planning and the restraint of avarice by a sense of national purpose.

Perhaps America's fate was sealed when Nixon took the dollar off the gold standard. That made the dollar an international reserve currency that could be printed without limit, removing any pressure from the US to be economically competitive or have a manufacturing base. Thus the current situation, in which the main way that the US interacts with the outside world is by waging one war after another, all to keep the dollar in place.

And finally, since we're sharing music videos again, here is an 80s antidote to Genesis:

Flying Lizards: Sex Machine

Posted by: Demian | Apr 19, 2015 7:35:55 PM | 37

P. Berman at 33 -- While I've not followed it too closely (I stay busy watching the Banderaists), the problem of the EuroForce is puzzling. It's the kind of rapid reaction force that the French have had for decades with Foreign Legion -- professional interventionists. And as they were volunteers, often foreign, little political cost for use.

So you'd think in principle it's well with the the organizational and logistical capabilities of the Eurozone. Clearly the problems are political, around domestic sovereignity and foreign entanglement. As well as the one you raise, who will it be used against, and where?

I'm not sure the Paraguay analogy fits, but I'd have to bone up on that one. I'm glad that we've drawn someone capable of bringing it up, good fit or bad. I always find it hard to think of land-locked Paraguay has having been a power frightful enough to unite its neighbors against it in the late 1800's.

Posted by: rufus magister | Apr 19, 2015 10:32:16 PM | 39

The Phoenix Program comes to Ukraine.

Posted by: guest77 | Apr 20, 2015 8:08:59 PM | 45

Posted by: Demian | Apr 20, 2015 10:12:19 PM | 48

And now, for just a minute, anyway, back onto the Ukraine.

Fort Russ has Vladimir Lepekhin explaining Why the Ukrainian army is doomed to defeat.

The main source of power of the Ukrainian military machine... is in its reliance on wide array of means of waging war in pursuit of "Ukrainianness".

This machine is based on lies, cruelty, direct terror, the use of forbidden weapons (I think that if the regime had nuclear weapons it would have used them by now), and the lowest imaginable methods of warmaking, such as the destruction of the civilian population, hostage-taking, torture, and the murder of prisoners of war and opponents....

It is not especially subordinate to the political leadership, but instead is purposed for, to some extent or another, the destruction of everything that does not fit into the "one state-one nation-one idea" conception.

The power of the Ukrainian military machine also resides in the fact that it is backed by the entire "civilized world" which is rendering Kiev moral, political, financial, military, and legal support.

He goes on to note that the Ukrainians have no effective leadership, capable of inspiring the ranks to sacrifice and victory. This is in part due no cohesive, appealing ideology.

As translator J. Hawk points out about Ukrainian nationalism, "Everyone who's ever adopted it, lost. They did not merely lose badly, they lost ugly, and made the ideology appear even more despicable and monstrous than it was before." Having cut themselves off from the Russian and Soviet past, they're left with Bandera and the OUN-UPA atrocities as models of "Ukrainainness."

I sadly expect this run of bad luck on the part of the heroes of the Ukraine will continue.

Posted by: rufus magister | Apr 20, 2015 10:52:01 PM | 50

@Demian,

If you're trying for true anonymity, you've already failed because this web site records IP addresses of all who post, unless you've already sought ways to block or falsify your IP address from the very beginning.

Equally email access has the same problem: irrespective of what information the email provider requires you to give, all a surveillance agency would need would be to access the IP addresses from which a given account is logged into.

True, the IP address isn't necessarily very accurate - typically in the 3-5 mile range - but additional filtering can narrow that down considerably, especially if traces are then put on said IP address to look for patterns of behavior (times of day a target typically uses the internet, writing/grammar patterns, lists of web sites frequented, etc).

Posted by: ǝn⇂ɔ | Apr 21, 2015 10:51:54 AM | 53

@⇂ɔ #53:

I am not trying for true anonymity. I just don't want my identity to be obvious to any fascist (at this current point in history, the word "fascist" is more or less synonymous with "Ukrainian") idiot who might be reading this blog.

@ALL:

If Atlantos were civilized, they would commit harikiri: Bridge Burning: EU to Bring Antitrust Charges against Gazprom http://t.co/8TrQ4LWoze

- Adalbrand (@Adalbrand) April 21, 2015

Now, on a lighter note: Kiev junta magic underwear???

Patriotic Underwear to Increase Morale

Posted by: Vintage Red | Apr 21, 2015 5:50:44 PM | 56

All I can say about this, yes, it seems serious. Patriotic underwear to increase morale of the Ukrainian army. So you can't say you weren't briefed on the new dress code.

On a darker note, here's a very well-made threat for you. Security forces say "Ukrainophobes" ought to "lower their rhetoric to zero". Senior SBU investigator Vasiliy Vovk, speaking officially, said "I think that... when we are practically at war... we should not have people... who are speaking out against Ukraine and against Ukrainianness. I advise them to do it because nothing good will come of it."

When asked if he could define "Ukrainophobia," Vovk said "No. But we know what we are talking about."

You might need a laugh after that. With All of Ukraine Blocked by the Gridlock From Successive Russian Invasions, arrangements are being made for overflow parking in Poland and Belarus.

[Apr 09, 2015] Ukraine The Global Corporate Annexation

Notable quotes:
"... 'For Cargill, Chevron, Monsanto, It's a Gold Mine of Profits' ..."
Apr 21, 2014 | Jesse's Café Américain
"War against a foreign country only happens when the moneyed classes think they are going to profit from it."

George Orwell

"War is a racket. It always has been. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives.

A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small 'inside' group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes."

Major General Smedley Butler, USMC

There is certainly a long established difference between a just war, a defensive war, and a war of adventure or aggression. No one understand this better than those who suffer loss in fighting them.

Like quite a few people I found myself asking, 'Why the Ukraine? Why the sudden push there, risking conflict with Russia on their own doorstep?' Why are we suddenly risking all to support what was clearly an extra-legal coup d'état?'

It is telling perhaps that one of the first things that happened after the coup d'état is that all of the Ukraine's gold was on a flight to New York, for the safekeeping by those same people who have managed to misplace a good portion of the German people's gold. It is the most transportable and fungible store of wealth, where the transfer of less portable assets by computerized digits may lag.

Follow the money...

GlobalResearch
Ukraine: The Corporate Annexation
'For Cargill, Chevron, Monsanto, It's a Gold Mine of Profits'
by JP Sottile

As the US and EU apply sanctions on Russia over its annexation' of Crimea, JP Sottile reveals the corporate annexation of Ukraine. For Cargill, Chevron, Monsanto, there's a gold mine of profits to be made from agri-business and energy exploitation.

The potential here for agriculture / agribusiness is amazing production here could double Ukraine's agriculture could be a real gold mine.

On 12th January 2014, a reported 50,000 "pro-Western" Ukrainians descended upon Kiev's Independence Square to protest against the government of President Viktor Yanukovych.

Stoked in part by an attack on opposition leader Yuriy Lutsenko, the protest marked the beginning of the end of Yanukovych's four year-long government.

That same day, the Financial Times reported a major deal for US agribusiness titan Cargill.

Business confidence never faltered

Despite the turmoil within Ukrainian politics after Yanukovych rejected a major trade deal with the European Union just seven weeks earlier, Cargill was confident enough about the future to fork over $200 million to buy a stake in Ukraine's UkrLandFarming...

Read the entire report here.

[Apr 04, 2015] The majority of Maidan supporters are experiencing severe impoverishment instead of welfare bonanza from EU they expected

Notable quotes:
"... The vast majority of the Maidan supporters were expecting some sort of welfare bonanza "when they joined the EU" after signing the association agreement. Instead they are experiencing impoverishment. ..."
"... I think there is a fair chance it will be the equivalent of an european Afghanistan. ..."
marknesop.wordpress.com

kirill, April 3, 2015 at 6:11 am

Ukraine will be a consolidated fascist state without an economy. Right. It was mentioned elsewhere that the only thing keeping the regime in power is the war. It sure isn't the economy. But eventually the economic decline will break the bubble.

The vast majority of the Maidan supporters were expecting some sort of welfare bonanza "when they joined the EU" after signing the association agreement. Instead they are experiencing impoverishment.

So this ridiculous delusion is going to break down. But delusions are very resilient things.

et Al, April 3, 2015 at 2:49 pm
I think there is a fair chance it will be the equivalent of an european Afghanistan. In a sense it already is with various oligarchs controlling bits of territory and sort of cooperating in Kiev. Elections are not much more than a Afghan Jirga.

Still, it is interesting to see Russia play the long game, the latest being a $285 three month gas contract with Kiev. When the Ukraine finally implodes, Russia can clearly point out how it could have pulled the plug at any time it wanted but it didn't because it has the best interests of its closest neighbor in mind. It also sets a benchmark for all the promises from the EU and US to be compared to, the latter far more likely to creatively reinterpret supposedly solid agreements than Russia especially if Kiev doesn't sing from the same hymnbook 200%. It is also a warning to Berlin and the EU – we pull the plug and it's all yours baby!

marknesop, April 3, 2015 at 3:16 pm
Yes, the people of Ukraine will never stand for this ridiculous substitution – a goose-stepping Nazi police state in place of the cushy streets-paved-with-gold paradise they were led to expect in exchange for their support for Maidan and the coup. They would probably put up with anything if it meant widespread prosperity, but they are indisputably much worse off now than they were prior to The Great Ukrainian Leap Forward and the trend is remorselessly downward for at least another year – even the IMF forecasts a considerably worse contraction of a further 10% rather than the 6% it forecast earlier. And that's with the most lipstick The New Atlanticist – a relentlessly pro-western publication whose current headlines include Wesley Clark's prediction of a Russian Spring offensive, the manifestly ridiculous contention that "Putin's war against Ukraine" has had the effect of uniting Ukrainians, and Russia's paranoid fantasies about the west representing a threat are all in its head – can put on it. Moreover, there is likely to be zero growth in 2016 as well. That assessment probably assumes certain realities that do not now exist, such as Kiev bringing the east back under its thumb, rather than it slipping further from its control and perhaps even expanding its territory.

[Apr 03, 2015] Were not cattle Kiev protesters throw manure at US embassy

Apr 03, 2015 | offguardian

Life News reports:

About two and a half thousand Ukrainians surrounded the US embassy in Kiev on the first of April. People who disagree with the appointment of foreigners to the Ukrainian government, as well as the intervention of the Americans and Europeans in the public administration of the country, holding banners saying "We are not cattle!" And they made sounds imitating animals.

Besides the protesters braying and bleating, they were eating cabbage, which was distributed by the organizers of the protest.

They also kept two-meter carrots with the symbols of the European Union. By the end of the demonstration of dissent Kiev residents pelted the US embassy with manure.

It is noteworthy that the video from the protest was removed from all the Ukrainian sites and users were blocked. Local journalists hardly covered the event.

[Apr 03, 2015] U.S. Trained Fascists To Storm Kiev

Notable quotes:
"... Enough baksheesh spread around this way, and you have built a nice local tier of warlord support. ..."
Apr 01, 2015 | M of A

barrisj | Apr 1, 2015 1:08:35 PM | 8

It seems as though the Yanks have revived the notion behind "The School of the Americas" era, where American Special Forces operatives would train up various battalions of "security forces", National Guard, "Presidential Guards", whatever, expressly to support Latin American fascistic dictatorships and to keep their respective countries on-side in the "war against Communism" in the Western Hemisphere.

So, today we have boatloads of Special Forces contingencies in the Middle East, in Africa, in South Asia, and now in Eastern Europe or in the former States of the Soviet Union (Georgia, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, et al), all with the specific task of supporting autocrats and dictators against their own respective peoples.

And the gullible US public is being sold this as "advancing the democratic agenda"...so blatant and so pathetic. This to promote US "leadership", and to create proxy military forces to advance US "strategic goals". Blowback, blowback, we don't see no steenkin' blowback!

rufus magister | Apr 1, 2015 10:23:52 PM | 9

Alberto at 6

Germany was both Protestant and Catholic. The Catholic Centre Party opposed the Nazis; I believe you'll find the Lutheran state churches of northern Germany the most accepting of their regime. Lutheran Scandinavia produced generous nos. of collaborators and volunteers for the Waffen-SS "Viking" Division. Bulgaria and Romania both had collaborationist governments drawn from local fascists.

en1c at 1

I think they plan on using brute force to keep power. There are several reports at Fort Russ about about a purge and revamping at the SBU.

Nalivaychenko, its leader, says it's going to be schooled in the Banderaist/OUN school of political repression. And here is a comprehensive guide to their methods.

Meanwhile, searches at the Ministry of the Interior have begun.

At Russia Insider, Rostislav Ishchenko argues that War in the East Is the Only Thing Preventing Ukraine Collapse. Which will not be pretty when it happens.

There is nothing good in store for Ukraine. I think during this year it will sustain a military defeat and the disintegration of its army, another coup and the collapse of what is left of its government agencies, all-out chaos, the total destruction of the economy and the start of subsistence farming for survival.... Survivors will be set back a century in terms of living standards and civilization. This is why foreign intervention to restore law and order to Ukraine after the collapse of Project Ukraine will be inevitable.

I hope he's exaggerating about that century thing.

Some good news -- miners near Kharkov are fighting to be paid.

Fete | Apr 1, 2015 11:39:02 PM | 10

04/01/2015 23:59

Russian Spring

Eduard Basurin, the Deputy Commander in Chief of Donetsk Republic Defense, read out to journalists excerpts of an intelligence obtained plan of Ukrainian special operation, which, in particular designated "special mobile groups to assault key infrastructure objects and crowded places".

Basurin said that this plan "of a special operation in sector B has been approved by the Ukrainian side and is being implemented". Therefore, the end of March intelligence about sending approximately thirty five Ukrainian subversion-reconnaissance group to areas of Shirokino and Donetsk to arrange provocations under disguise of combatants is confirmed.

According to the presented documents, the subversives were also tasked with liquidation of Donetsk Republic leaders, spreading panic among locals, opening random mortar and small arms fire from Donetsk and the airport toward settlement Peski, where positions of the Ukrainian forces are installed.

jfl | Apr 2, 2015 4:27:24 AM | 13

@9
The purge going on in Western Ukraine may be the sign that they have given up on war with the East ... that would have been their instruction from the CIA, in that case ... and are preparing to internalize the war. I'm probably quoting J Hawk or K Rus. Everything is so wrong in Ukraine ... and getting daily wronger ... that they desperately need some overarching threat to 'keep everyone's mind off the pain'. The poor, poor Ukrainians.

I don't think the author at Russia Insider meant that the collapse of the Ukraine would last 100 years, 'just' that the 'lifestyle' of the Ukrainians would be more similar to their lifestyle 100 years ago than to their 21st century fantasies. The ground is the place to build up from. And slowly and thoughtfully, with an appreciation for what is real and what is not, is the way to go.

It is not only the Ukrainians who will be in this position in the near future. I agree with Mike Maloney@7 ... "how can all this not end up becoming globalized total war?"

ǝn⇂ɔ | Apr 2, 2015 9:19:48 AM | 16

"US training" in practice seems more an economic outcome than a military one. Much like sourcing the F35 - US training of indigenous troops presents limitless opportunities for kickbacks, theft, and other means of securing payment for local warlords. Trainers have to be fed, housed, and protected - all activities which generate income. Trainees have to be furnished equipment - which can be stolen and sold. Training itself consumes resources: ammunition, food, etc which also can be stolen and sold.

Enough baksheesh spread around this way, and you have built a nice local tier of warlord support.

rufus magister | Apr 2, 2015 11:05:14 PM | 26
It's Official – All Kiev's Investigations of Maidan Crimes Deadlocked

"Council of Europe report finds that official Ukrainian investigations into crimes committed during the Maidan protests are a total shambles and are going nowhere."

Harold | Apr 3, 2015 2:56:26 AM | 28

As billmon predicted the Ukraine has called Russia's number -- for now: http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/04/02/us-ukraine-crisis-gas-idUSKBN0MT0B420150402
Richard Steven Hack | Apr 3, 2015 1:44:14 PM | 31

Obama fully intends to get a war or at least threat of war started in the Ukraine between Russia and NATO in order to boost the military-industrial complex and the US military budget.

The alleged intent of the Ukraine crisis was to make Ukraine into a NATO base on Russia's borders. But Russia will never stand for that. And it's not certain that everyone in the Beltway was ignorant of that. These people can read the articles that pointed out that Russia would not stand for that.

But Russia didn't take the bait and invade Ukraine. Instead they merely supported the anti-Kiev forces in the east.

So Obama has to up the ante. The only way to do that is to support the far-right neo-Nazi forces in the Ukraine and get them to take over the government. This is because Russia will never accept a Nazi-led Ukraine, either.

The goal is to force Russia to deal militarily directly with Ukraine, thus justifying a NATO threat response, which will boost the Cold war and boost the US and EU military-industrial complex.

Never forget that Obama is owned and operated by his masters in Chicago who are both Israel-Firsters and stock holders in the military-industrial complex.

Demian | Apr 3, 2015 2:14:25 PM | 32

Funny that this isn't showing up on Western news channels:

offguardian: "We're not cattle": Kiev protesters throw manure at US embassy (with video)

Note that unlike the EuroMaidan, this protest is peaceful.

Demian | Apr 3, 2015 5:58:20 PM | 33

Republicans see Obama as a greater threat to the US than Putin. For once, they are right.
jfl | Apr 3, 2015 6:11:32 PM | 34

@31,32
Looks like the Ukrainians are finally beginning to understand just how badly they have been played. Maybe they will no longer stand for a Nazi-led Ukraine, either?

I mean ... how have they benefited at all from NAZI rule?

[Mar 31, 2015] Ukraine s Bloody Civil War No End in Sight

It is very difficult to access the real situation in Donbass. there is a distinct Russian interference and the US interference in the conflict, so it is better to be viewed as a proxy war between the US and Russia. Somewhat similar to Syrian conflict. Where the Ukraine is just a victim of geopolitical games.
Mar 31, 2015 | The National Interest

After spending several days in and around Donetsk last week, I found it hard to escape the conclusion that the second Minsk ceasefire is rapidly unraveling. Nearly continuous artillery shelling and machine-gun fire could be heard for the better part of Thursday morning in the city's Oktyabrskaya neighborhood, not far from the airport, where fighting is said to have continued without surcease.

The OSCE reported that the main railway station in the city was shelled on March 25, and a visit to it the day after showed that to be so. Rebel tanks could be seen participating in exercises on the rural outskirts of Donetsk on the 26th. The sound of sporadic artillery fire could be heard in the city's centrally located Leninsky District well into the early hours of the 27th.

The mood among many in Donetsk-noncombatants as well as rebel fighters who comprise what is known as the Army of Novorossiya-indicates little interest in a rapprochement with Kiev. This is, given the conditions of the city after nearly a full year of war, rather understandable. Many bitterly complain of Kiev's chosen moniker for the military campaign it is waging against the separatist fighters, the "Anti-Terrorist Operation." Ordinary citizens and combatants alike view it as an attempt to dehumanize them as a whole by grouping the entire population of the region in with likes of ISIS.

Interactions with several rebel rank-and-files and a briefing from two rebel officers reveal even less of an appetite for a way back into the Ukrainian fold. As one senior officer put it: "Ukraine is dead. It was killed on May 2 in Odessa." Questions regarding Russian involvement were met with scoffs-though one did admit that "[their] Russian brothers" did provide food supplies to the area.

This is not to say Russia's support to the rebels is limited to nonlethal aid, just that it was quite obvious that all involved would be loath to admit it. In any event, despite repeated accusations of Russian malfeasance by Washington and Brussels, even the Chief of Staff of Ukraine's Armed Forces, General Viktor Muzhenko, admitted in late January that the "Ukrainian army is not fighting with the regular units of the Russian army."

Interestingly, the rebels seem to have a similar mindset to those U.S. Congressmen who overwhelmingly voted to supply Kiev with lethal military aid last week: that the remilitarization of the conflict is simply inevitable. One rebel commander said that he expects Kiev to launch a new major offensive "within a week" and added, matter-of-factly: "We are ready." And ready, he claims, for the long haul.

The separatist forces, according to this commander, are prepared to fight for the next five to seven years for "Russky Mir" (which he defined as "Russian culture") to rid all Ukraine of what he called "Nazis" and "fascists." Pressed for details, the commander said he did not wish to impose a "Russian world" on Ukraine, but rather that each province ought to hold a referendum to decide its fate, apparently in a fashion similar to the referendum that was held in Crimea. The commander claimed to have (but did not provide) intelligence showing that over $3 billion of the $5 billion tranche of IMF assistance that recently went to Kiev is being used to shore up its military. In short, it quickly became blindingly clear that these people are in no mood to settle; and the idea that Kiev will emerge victorious anytime soon after the twin military defeats it suffered at Debaltseve and at the Donetsk airport-with or without American lethal aid-borders on the preposterous.

Yet it seems that the Washington establishment's (though, interestingly, it seems not the president's) preferred policy choice is to send lethal aid to Kiev because it is believed, no doubt sincerely, that a supply of javelin anti-tank missiles will somehow increase the number of Russian fatalities to such an extent that public opinion would turn against Putin-thereby forcing him to back down.

This is nothing more than a fantasy dressed up as a strategy because it attributes little to no agency on the part of the rebel fighters or, for that matter, the area's noncombatants. The simple, undeniable fact is that even if Russia was to be persuaded-via sanctions or via a significant uptick in military casualties-to wash its hands of the region, there is almost no chance that the indigenous military forces in the region would simply melt away. What is continuing to unfold in the Donbass-despite repeated protestations from Kiev's representatives in Washington-is a civil war between two groups with diametrically opposed visions for the future of their country. It is a civil war that also-given that each side has enormously powerful supporters-poses a genuinely grave risk to global security.

[Mar 31, 2015] Ukraine s Bloody Civil War No End in Sight

It is very difficult to access the real situation in Donbass. there is a distinct Russian interference and the US interference in the conflict, so it is better to be viewed as a proxy war between the US and Russia. Somewhat similar to Syrian conflict. Where the Ukraine is just a victim of geopolitical games.
Mar 31, 2015 | The National Interest

After spending several days in and around Donetsk last week, I found it hard to escape the conclusion that the second Minsk ceasefire is rapidly unraveling. Nearly continuous artillery shelling and machine-gun fire could be heard for the better part of Thursday morning in the city's Oktyabrskaya neighborhood, not far from the airport, where fighting is said to have continued without surcease.

The OSCE reported that the main railway station in the city was shelled on March 25, and a visit to it the day after showed that to be so. Rebel tanks could be seen participating in exercises on the rural outskirts of Donetsk on the 26th. The sound of sporadic artillery fire could be heard in the city's centrally located Leninsky District well into the early hours of the 27th.

The mood among many in Donetsk-noncombatants as well as rebel fighters who comprise what is known as the Army of Novorossiya-indicates little interest in a rapprochement with Kiev. This is, given the conditions of the city after nearly a full year of war, rather understandable. Many bitterly complain of Kiev's chosen moniker for the military campaign it is waging against the separatist fighters, the "Anti-Terrorist Operation." Ordinary citizens and combatants alike view it as an attempt to dehumanize them as a whole by grouping the entire population of the region in with likes of ISIS.

Interactions with several rebel rank-and-files and a briefing from two rebel officers reveal even less of an appetite for a way back into the Ukrainian fold. As one senior officer put it: "Ukraine is dead. It was killed on May 2 in Odessa." Questions regarding Russian involvement were met with scoffs-though one did admit that "[their] Russian brothers" did provide food supplies to the area.

This is not to say Russia's support to the rebels is limited to nonlethal aid, just that it was quite obvious that all involved would be loath to admit it. In any event, despite repeated accusations of Russian malfeasance by Washington and Brussels, even the Chief of Staff of Ukraine's Armed Forces, General Viktor Muzhenko, admitted in late January that the "Ukrainian army is not fighting with the regular units of the Russian army."

Interestingly, the rebels seem to have a similar mindset to those U.S. Congressmen who overwhelmingly voted to supply Kiev with lethal military aid last week: that the remilitarization of the conflict is simply inevitable. One rebel commander said that he expects Kiev to launch a new major offensive "within a week" and added, matter-of-factly: "We are ready." And ready, he claims, for the long haul.

The separatist forces, according to this commander, are prepared to fight for the next five to seven years for "Russky Mir" (which he defined as "Russian culture") to rid all Ukraine of what he called "Nazis" and "fascists." Pressed for details, the commander said he did not wish to impose a "Russian world" on Ukraine, but rather that each province ought to hold a referendum to decide its fate, apparently in a fashion similar to the referendum that was held in Crimea. The commander claimed to have (but did not provide) intelligence showing that over $3 billion of the $5 billion tranche of IMF assistance that recently went to Kiev is being used to shore up its military. In short, it quickly became blindingly clear that these people are in no mood to settle; and the idea that Kiev will emerge victorious anytime soon after the twin military defeats it suffered at Debaltseve and at the Donetsk airport-with or without American lethal aid-borders on the preposterous.

Yet it seems that the Washington establishment's (though, interestingly, it seems not the president's) preferred policy choice is to send lethal aid to Kiev because it is believed, no doubt sincerely, that a supply of javelin anti-tank missiles will somehow increase the number of Russian fatalities to such an extent that public opinion would turn against Putin-thereby forcing him to back down.

This is nothing more than a fantasy dressed up as a strategy because it attributes little to no agency on the part of the rebel fighters or, for that matter, the area's noncombatants. The simple, undeniable fact is that even if Russia was to be persuaded-via sanctions or via a significant uptick in military casualties-to wash its hands of the region, there is almost no chance that the indigenous military forces in the region would simply melt away. What is continuing to unfold in the Donbass-despite repeated protestations from Kiev's representatives in Washington-is a civil war between two groups with diametrically opposed visions for the future of their country. It is a civil war that also-given that each side has enormously powerful supporters-poses a genuinely grave risk to global security.

[Mar 01, 2015] US Pushes For Escalation, Arms Kiev By Laundering Weapons Through Abu Dhabi

Notable quotes:
"... Vadym Prystaiko, who until last fall was Ukraine's ambassador to Canada, says the world must not be afraid of joining Ukraine in the fight against a nuclear power. ..."
"... The U.S. will now disguise its arms-to-Kiev program by laundering it through its sponsored Middle East dictatorships: ..."
"... The United Arab Emirates is not known as arms producer. But it buys lots of U.S. weapons. It will now forward those to Ukraine while the U.S. will claim that it does not arm Ukraine. Who do they think will believe them? ..."
"... Not a peep from Merkel - her only disagreements with the Nobel Peace Prize winner about Ukraine are purely tactical. ..."
"... Basically, Germany was to spearhead the EU's expansion to Ukraine, while the US role was to facilitate Ukraine's inclusion in Nato. ..."
Mar 01, 2015 | moonofalabama.org

The U.S. is circumventing its own proclaimed policy of not delivering weapons to Ukraine and is thereby, despite urgent misgivings from its European allies, increasing the chance of a wider catastrophic war in Europe.

The Ukrainian coup president Poroshenko went to an international arms exhibition in Dubai. There he met the U.S. chief military weapon salesman.

ABU DHABI – Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is expected to meet with U.S. defense companies Tuesday during a major arms exhibition here even though the American government has not cleared the firms to sell Kiev lethal weapons.

Frank Kendall, the Pentagon's acquisition executive is scheduled to meet with a Ukrainian delegation Monday evening, however Poroshenko is not expected to be there. Kendall, in an interview, said he will be bringing a message of support from the United States.

"I expect the conversation will be about their needs," Kendall told Defense One a few hours before the meeting. "We're limited at this point in time in terms of what we're able to provide them, but where we can be supportive, we want to be."

Poroshenko, urged on by his neocon U.S. sponsors, wants total war with Russia. Porosheko's deputy foreign minister, currently on a visit in Canada, relayed the message:

Ukraine's deputy foreign minister says he is preparing for "full-scale war" against Russia and wants Canada to help by supplying lethal weapons and the training to use them.

Vadym Prystaiko, who until last fall was Ukraine's ambassador to Canada, says the world must not be afraid of joining Ukraine in the fight against a nuclear power.

In the mind of these folks waging a "full-scale war" against a nuclear superpower like Russia is nothing to be afraid of. These are truly lunatics.

Russia says that U.S. weapons delivered to Ukraine would create real trouble. They mean it. To hint how Russia would counter such a move it just offered a spiced up S-300 missile defense system to Iran:

Sergei Chemezov, chief executive of the Russian defense corporation Rostec, said Tehran is considering its offer to sell an Antey-2500 anti-ballistic air defense system,

The Antey-2500 is a mobile surface-to-air missile system that offers enhanced combat capabilities, including the destruction of aircraft and ballistic missiles at a range of about 1,500 miles, according to its manufacturer, Almaz-Antey.

The system was developed from a less advanced version -- the 1980s-generation S-300V system -- which has a 125-mile range. A 2007 contract to supply the S-300 system to Iran was canceled in 2010, after the U.S. and Israel lobbied against it, ...

Such a system in Iran would, in case of a conflict, endanger every U.S. airplane in the Middle East.

But that threat did not deter the U.S. As the U.S. arms dealer in Abu Dhabi said: "where we can be supportive, we want to be". The U.S. will now disguise its arms-to-Kiev program by laundering it through its sponsored Middle East dictatorships:

Christopher Miller ‏@ChristopherJM

Poroshenko, UAE agree on "delivery of certain types of armaments and military hardware to #Ukraine."

The United Arab Emirates is not known as arms producer. But it buys lots of U.S. weapons. It will now forward those to Ukraine while the U.S. will claim that it does not arm Ukraine. Who do they think will believe them?

This is again a dangerous escalation of the conflict in Ukraine by U.S. machinations. It comes at the same moment that Russia, France, Germany and Ukraine meet in Paris to push for faster implementation of the Minsk 2 accord for a ceasefire and for a political solution of the civil war in Ukraine:

On Monday spokesman for the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry Yevhen Perebyinis said that during their Paris meeting, the foursome of foreign ministers will focus on the implementation of the Minsk agreements and withdrawal of heavy artillery in Donbas.

The Ukrainian government has said that it will not withdraw its artillery as long as there are still skirmishes around a few flashpoints along the ceasefire line. In Shirokyne east of Mariupol the government aligned neo-nazi battalion Azov continues to attack the federalists. The Ukrainian propaganda claims that the federalists plan an immediate attack on Mariupol. That is nonsense and the federalist have denied any plans for further fighting. Unlike the Ukrainian government the federalist started to pull back their artillery and will continue to do so.

The Ukrainian government is breaking the Minsk 2 agreement by not pulling back its heavy artillery from the ceasefire line. The U.S. is arming the Ukrainian army and will soon train its volunteer neo-nazi "national guard" forces.

The major European powers, Germany, France and Russia, try to tame the conflict down. The U.S. and its poodles in Kiev continue to poor oil into the fire. If the Europeans do not succeed in pushing back against Washington the Ukraine with burn and Europe with it.

In Further Escalation U.S. Delivery Of Weapons To Kiev Will Be Laundered Through Abu Dhabi

Posted by b at 10:20 AM | Comments (53)

Lone Wolf | Feb 24, 2015 11:20:39 AM | 1

@b

Thanks for a very good summary of the whole guacamole.

Another reason not to withdraw the artillery, being also used by Kerry to crank up the "let's-give-weapons-to-Ukraine" line, is the mopping of the Debaltsevo pocket, which Ukraine & Co. decided to ignore from the beginning, to use it now as a justification not to fulfill Minsk 2.0. The false-flag attack in Kharkov was a prelude of the up and coming internal repression, which will drown in torture, suffering and blood the little resistance there is to the continuation of the war and the IV Mobilization.

Whoever said that foreign policy is only an extension of domestic policy?

gersen | Feb 24, 2015 12:24:12 PM | 3

RE: Lone Wolf | Feb 24, 2015 11:20:39 AM | 1

I commented about a week ago that the ceasefire might hold if both sides in Ukraine pulled back their artillery - unless Obama acted to sabotage it. Now he has done so - not withstanding the withdrawal of federalist ordinance - by offering to rearm the gun-crazy fascists of the Ukrainian gov't, with not even a fig leaf of "plausible deniability" to cover his assets.

Not a peep from Merkel - her only disagreements with the Nobel Peace Prize winner about Ukraine are purely tactical.

As for Poroshenko, he doubtless has a helicopter gassed and ready, and a nice little hidey hole in Switzerland all prepared, and conveniently close to his billions. That's why he sent his family out of the country, because when he has to get out - he has to get out fast.

shargash | Feb 24, 2015 12:29:18 PM | 4

Re: (2) IhaveLittleToAdd

Like most criminal organizations, the US tries to take very good care of its agents that do what they're told and to be very brutal to those who don't. For examples of the former, check out all the South American criminals living in Miami as well as the perhaps more relevant example of Mikheil Saakashvili, who is strutting around Ukraine rather than being on trial in Georgia. For examples of the latter, check out Noriega, Saddam, or Bin Ladin.

While I suspect Porky is wondering how he got himself into this mess, I don't think he has much choice but to stick it out to the end. At least his family will be well taken care of.

sleepy | Feb 24, 2015 2:08:47 PM | 10

Re: IHaveLittleToAdd no. 2

Re: shargash no. 4

I have read recently in an article on another blog that in 2012 Poroshenko was being politically groomed for his future role by Germany's Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung institute, a think-tank wing of Merkel's Christian Democrats, as was Vitali Klitschko the present mayor of Kiev in 2011.

Basically, Germany was to spearhead the EU's expansion to Ukraine, while the US role was to facilitate Ukraine's inclusion in Nato.

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2015/02/greece-dead-man-walking-2.html

Lone Wolf | Feb 24, 2015 3:19:08 PM | 14

@sid_finster@5

"Ukraine will go to war in late March"--Zakharchenko


..."We are beginning the withdrawal of heavy equipment, while Ukraine is bringing it up from Kharkov and Dnepropetrovsk. Seems to be there will be a provocation. Ukraine will go to war in late March or Early April. Ukraine needs war," Zakharchenko said during a Monday briefing.


J.Hawk's Comment: ...Because, to my mind, there seems to be a pattern of Ukrainian conflict activity: it is most likely to escalate when it just received foreign financial aid, and is the most likely to seek peace just as it needs another tranche...

sid_finster | Feb 24, 2015 8:42:45 PM | 22

$350m is not going to buy you many US weapons, especially as Parashka's contract is for $2.4 billion, less delivery, middlemen, financing, etc..

The IMF is another source, but that money hasn't arrived yet, and there are a lot of conditions attached. That's why the Fund is the lender of last resort.

Since arms are invariably sold subject to strict limits on resales, I suspect that either:
1. The sale is for domestic Ukrainian consumption, i.e Parashka's attempt to look like he is doing something;
Or
2.The US is secretly financing the sale, directly or indirectly. Such financing may be in the form of "we promise to aid your ISIS friends, or look the other way, if you 'sell' Ukraine these weapons and take a lenient attitude regarding repayment."

Lone Wolf | Feb 24, 2015 9:20:09 PM | 23

@Alberto@11

This is not because they disagree with his politics, but because Saakashvili is wanted on a multitude of criminal charges.

"Criminal charges?" Bingo! He fits the credentials for the job as Porky's "adviser." In reality, Saakashvili, a CIA crooked rat, is the CIA man in Ukraine, overseeing the entire anti-Russian effort, weapons needs, false-flag operations, internal repression, Ukinazi death squads, intel gathering and coordination, etc. Georgia's complaint to Ukraine was more of a wink to Saakashvili's newly found job, a show for domestic consumption, otherwise, Interpol would be looking for him, wouldn't it?

ProsperousPeace | Feb 24, 2015 9:37:53 PM | 24

Re: Isaakashvili sudden involvement with the "Ukrainian government": Kiev Snipers: Mystery Solved

It was reported several weeks ago in Interpress News that four of the snipers in Kiev were in fact Georgian nationals. The source for this story was Georgian General Tristan Tsitelashvili (Titelashvili), who later confirmed this in an interview with Rossiya TV.

Tsitelashvili claimed that at least four of the snipers shooting at people in Maidan Square were under the command of former Georgian president Mikheil Saakashvili, who is doing his best to destabilize his own country, and others if necessary, to find a way back into power.

Piotr Berman | Feb 24, 2015 11:28:51 PM | 25

How long did Saakashvili's war with Russia last? 48 hours? 72 hours? Good advisor to have.

Posted by: Crest | Feb 24, 2015 8:34:15 PM | 20

According to Wikipedia, the war started on Aug 8, minutes after midnight, and it definitely lasted at least 4 days. On fifth day, Georgians left a key city, Gori, and Russians entered on sixth day. On the other hand, the war was lost within 24 hours. The only chance of victory for heavily outnumbered Georgia was to surprise the Russians and Ossetians and take control of the only tunnel between South Ossetia and the Russian Federation (North Ossetia), which they did not. Thus Russian could retake all territory gained by Georgia on day one within two days, rather than a week. Georgia concentrated almost all forces against Ossetian, leaving the second border with good roads, with Abkhasia, practically undefended. Thus the only way to score a victory lasting more than one day was to risk loosing big majority of Georgian military in a cauldron -- Georgian forces in Ossetian mountain valleys would have Russian forces behind them, as only police checkpoints were delaying Russian advance from Abkhasia, (posting detours, issuing tickets for parking violations, violation of weight limits on bridges for tanks etc.???).

As a history buff, I have hard time finding a strategic plan of equal stupidity. To give the creator of that plan a key advising position seems suicidal. An anti-Russian Georgian owns a large (??? impressive web site) newspaper in Kiev.

Demian | Feb 25, 2015 3:02:07 AM | 28

Foreign Affairs poll of experts about whether the US should arm Ukraine:

4 strongly agree
5 agree
0 are neutral [they're experts, after all]
8 disagree
10 strongly disagree

brian | Feb 26, 2015 4:59:48 AM | 52

You can read the whole article for free if you register. You get two free articles per month. FA should be of interest to MoA readers.

By George Galloway. a great discussion about the Russian_Western struggle; its history and recent development.;
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNaSGdYxm8M

guest77 | Feb 26, 2015 1:47:24 PM | 53

@52 Thanks for the Galloway show. His al Mayadeen show has always been difficult for me to find - and it is considerably better, I feel, than both Sputnik and Comment (which are fine shows themselves).

[Feb 25, 2015] Frontline Ukraine: Crisis in the Borderlands by Richard Sakwa review – an unrivalled account

Notable quotes:
"... It also requires an acceptance of bilingualism, mutual tolerance of different traditions, and devolution of power to the regions. ..."
"... the overthrow of Viktor Yanukovych last year brought the triumph of the monist view, held most strongly in western Ukraine, whose leaders were determined this time to ensure the winner takes all. ..."
"... "fateful geographical paradox: that Nato exists to manage the risks created by its existence". ..."
"... Nato's role has been, in part, to maintain US primacy over Europe's foreign policy. ..."
"... Last year's "Fuck the EU" comment by Victoria Nuland, Obama's neocon assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, was the pithiest expression of this. ..."
"... Sakwa writes with barely suppressed anger of Europe's failure, arguing that instead of a vision embracing the whole continent, the EU has become little more than the civilian wing of the Atlantic alliance. ..."
"... Frontline Ukraine highlights several points that have become almost taboo in western accounts: the civilian casualties in eastern Ukraine caused by Ukrainian army shelling, the physical assaults on leftwing candidates in last year's election and the failure to complete investigations of last February's sniper activity in Kiev (much of it thought to have been by anti-Yanukovych fighters) or of the Odessa massacre in which dozens of anti-Kiev protesters were burnt alive in a building set on fire by nationalists or clubbed to death when they jumped from windows. ..."
"... A very well documented report and yet anti Russian thinking pervades relentlessly against the true facts as they are available. ..."
"... I'm impressed by what Sakwa says about the "monist" versus "pluralist" models of Ukrainian statehood. Indeed the recent "anti terrorist operations" can be seen as failed attempts by the monists to impose their model by force on the south and east. ..."
"... There is a conspiracy of silence in Washington and Kiev about the true nature of the Neo Nazis operating as regular units within the Ukrainian army. ..."
"... As in the endless accusations of being a "Putinbot" if you have the temerity to challenge the MSM script. ..."
"... I have a strong suspicion that the demonising of Putin is at least in part a method to draw attention away from US (and maybe Israeli) warmongering of the last decades, so I hope this book will give a fairly balanced account of what's really taking place in Crimea and Ukraine. Also I suspect that the CIA is, true to form, stirring up the Ukrainians so to destabilise Russian influence. ..."
Feb 19, 2015 | The Guardian

When Arseniy Yatsenyuk, Ukraine's prime minister, told a German TV station recently that the Soviet Union invaded Germany, was this just blind ignorance? Or a kind of perverted wishful thinking? If the USSR really was the aggressor in 1941, it would suit Yatsenyuk's narrative of current geopolitics in which Russia is once again the only side that merits blame.

When Grzegorz Schetyna, Poland's deputy foreign minister, said Ukrainians liberated Auschwitz, did he not know that the Red Army was a multinational force in which Ukrainians certainly played a role but the bulk of the troops were Russian? Or was he looking for a new way to provoke the Kremlin?

Faced with these irresponsible distortions, and they are replicated in a hundred other prejudiced comments about Russian behaviour from western politicians as well as their eastern European colleagues, it is a relief to find a book on the Ukrainian conflict that is cool, balanced, and well sourced. Richard Sakwa makes repeated criticisms of Russian tactics and strategy, but he avoids lazy Putin-bashing and locates the origins of the Ukrainian conflict in a quarter-century of mistakes since the cold war ended. In his view, three long-simmering crises have boiled over to produce the violence that is engulfing eastern Ukraine.

The first is the tension between two different models of Ukrainian statehood.

More than any other change of government in Kiev since 1991, the overthrow of Viktor Yanukovych last year brought the triumph of the monist view, held most strongly in western Ukraine, whose leaders were determined this time to ensure the winner takes all.

The second crisis arises from the internationalisation of the struggle inside Ukraine which turned it into a geopolitical tug of war. Sakwa argues that this stems from the asymmetrical end of the cold war which shut Russia out of the European alliance system. While Mikhail Gorbachev and millions of other Russians saw the end of the cold war as a shared victory which might lead to the building of a "common European home", most western leaders saw Russia as a defeated nation whose interests could be brushed aside, and which must accept US hegemony in the new single-superpower world order or face isolation. Instead of dismantling Nato, the cold-war alliance was strengthened and expanded in spite of repeated warnings from western experts on Russia that this would create new tensions. Long before Putin came to power, Yeltsin had urged the west not to move Nato eastwards.

Even today at this late stage, a declaration of Ukrainian non-alignment as part of an internationally negotiated settlement, and UN Security Council guarantees of that status, would bring instant de-escalation and make a lasting ceasefire possible in eastern Ukraine.

The hawks in the Clinton administration ignored all this, Bush abandoned the anti-ballistic missile treaty and put rockets close to Russia's borders, and now a decade later, after Russia's angry reaction to provocations in Georgia in 2008 and Ukraine today, we have what Sakwa rightly calls a "fateful geographical paradox: that Nato exists to manage the risks created by its existence".

The third crisis, also linked to the Nato issue, is the European Union's failure to stay true to the conflict resolution imperative that had been its original impetus. After 1989 there was much talk of the arrival of the "hour of Europe". Just as the need for Franco-German reconciliation inspired the EU's foundation, many hoped the cold war's end would lead to a broader east-west reconciliation across the old Iron Curtain. But the prospect of greater European independence worried key decision-makers in Washington, and Nato's role has been, in part, to maintain US primacy over Europe's foreign policy. From Bosnia in 1992 to Ukraine today, the last two decades have seen repeated occasions where US officials pleaded, half-sincerely, for a greater European role in handling geopolitical crises in Europe while simultaneously denigrating and sidelining Europe's efforts. Last year's "Fuck the EU" comment by Victoria Nuland, Obama's neocon assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, was the pithiest expression of this.

Sakwa writes with barely suppressed anger of Europe's failure, arguing that instead of a vision embracing the whole continent, the EU has become little more than the civilian wing of the Atlantic alliance.

Within the framework of these three crises, Sakwa gives the best analysis yet in book form of events on the ground in eastern Ukraine as well as in Kiev, Washington, Brussels and Moscow. He covers the disputes between the "resolvers" (who want a negotiated solution) and the "war party" in each capital.

He describes the rows over sanctions that have split European leaders, and points out how Ukraine's president, Petro Poroshenko, is under constant pressure from Nuland's favourite Ukrainian, the more militant Yatsenyuk, to rely on military force.

As for Putin, Sakwa sees him not so much as the driver of the crisis but as a regulator of factional interests and a temporiser who has to balance pressure from more rightwing Russian nationalists as well as from the insurgents in Ukraine, who get weapons and help from Russia but are not the Kremlin's puppets.

Frontline Ukraine highlights several points that have become almost taboo in western accounts: the civilian casualties in eastern Ukraine caused by Ukrainian army shelling, the physical assaults on leftwing candidates in last year's election and the failure to complete investigations of last February's sniper activity in Kiev (much of it thought to have been by anti-Yanukovych fighters) or of the Odessa massacre in which dozens of anti-Kiev protesters were burnt alive in a building set on fire by nationalists or clubbed to death when they jumped from windows.

The most disturbing novelty of the Ukrainian crisis is the way Putin and other Russian leaders are routinely demonised. At the height of the cold war when the dispute between Moscow and the west was far more dangerous, backed as it was by the danger of nuclear catastrophe, Brezhnev and Andropov were never treated to such public insults by western commentators and politicians.

Equally alarming, though not new, is the one-sided nature of western political, media and thinktank coverage. The spectre of senator Joseph McCarthy stalks the stage, marginalising those who offer a balanced analysis of why we have got to where we are and what compromises could save us. I hope Sakwa's book does not itself become a victim, condemned as insufficiently anti-Russian to be reviewed.

• Jonathan Steele is a former Guardian Moscow correspondent, and author of Eternal Russia: Yeltsin, Gorbachev and the Mirage of Democracy. To order Frontline Ukraine for £15.19 (RRP £18.99), go to bookshop.theguardian.com or call 0330 333 6846

Susan O'neill -> Steve Ennever 25 Feb 2015 07:11
It must have because I remember that Moscow requested a special meeting of the UN security council in accordance with a treaty in Geneva. This was an attempt to negate the need for intervention in a foreign state by Russia (which would have delighted the US). Furthermore, both sides of the horror were armed to the teeth. Some perspective would be nice.
Susan O'neill -> willpodmore 25 Feb 2015 06:47
A very well documented report and yet anti Russian thinking pervades relentlessly against the true facts as they are available.

Until Britain decides to distance itself from the US anti Russian thinking (that means criticism of the McCarthy era) we will still be looking to root out "Reds under the beds" and routing anything(or anyone) who might seem to be pro-Russian. Thanks for the contribution.

AenimaUK -> jezzam 25 Feb 2015 05:12
I thought Ukraine was already unaligned before this crisis started.

Yes, before the undemocratic, right-wing, NATO-backed coup, it was.

It is true that NATO is totally dominated by the US - but this is because they spend considerably more on defence than the rest of NATO put together. To this extent, European foreign policy is dominated by the US - this is entirely Europe's own choice and fault though.

So your alternative is that the EU up its defence spending to match the absurd permanent war-economy levels of the US? And will the resources for that come from tax increases or public service cuts to match the US? Wasn't the point about the end of the Cold War that it was supposed to be the 'end' of the 'war'? Of course, those in charge of the US military-industrial complex and their chums in the DoD failed to get that memo (or rather, read it, decided it would threaten their economic and geo-political imperialism, and shredded it).

willpodmore -> MiaPia2015 25 Feb 2015 04:24

Not true MiaPia - Leading scholars of Russian history have refuted the claim that the famine was an act of genocide.

Terry Martin concluded, "The famine was not an intentional act of genocide specifically targeting the Ukrainian nation." David Shearer noted, "Although the famine hit Ukraine hard, it was not, as some historians argue, a purposefully genocidal policy against Ukrainians. no evidence has surfaced to suggest that the famine was planned, and it affected broad segments of the Russian and other non-Ukrainian populations both in Ukraine and in Russia." Diane Koenker and Ronald Bachman agreed, "the documents included here or published elsewhere do not yet support the claim that the famine was deliberately produced by confiscating the harvest, or that it was directed especially against the peasants of Ukraine." Barbara Green also agreed, "Unlike the Holocaust, the Great Famine was not an intentional act of genocide." Steven Katz commented, "What makes the Ukrainian case non-genocidal, and what makes it different from the Holocaust, is the fact that the majority of Ukrainian children survived and, still more, that they were permitted to survive." Adam Ulam agreed too, writing, "Stalin and his closest collaborators had not willed the famine."
Tauger explained, "The evidence that I have published and other evidence, including recent Ukrainian document collections, show that the famine developed out of a shortage and pervaded the Soviet Union, and that the regime organized a massive program of rationing and relief in towns and in villages, including in Ukraine, but simply did not have enough food. This is why the Soviet famine, an immense crisis and tragedy of the Soviet economy, was not in the same category as the Nazis' mass murders, which had no agricultural or other economic basis." He summed up, "Ukraine received more in food supplies during the famine crisis than it exported to other republics. Soviet authorities made substantial concessions to Ukraine in response to an undeniable natural disaster and transferred resources from Russia to Ukraine for food relief and agricultural recovery."

Hans Blumenfeld pointed out that famine also struck the Russian regions of Lower Volga and North Caucasus: "This disproves the 'fact' of anti-Ukrainian genocide parallel to Hitler's anti-semitic holocaust. To anyone familiar with the Soviet Union's desperate manpower shortage in those years, the notion that its rulers would deliberately reduce that scarce resource is absurd Up to the 1950s the most frequently quoted figure was two million [famine victims]. Only after it had been established that Hitler's holocaust had claimed six million victims, did anti-Soviet propaganda feel it necessary to top that figure by substituting the fantastic figure of seven to ten million "

Ellman concluded, "What recent research has found in the archives is not a conscious policy of genocide against Ukraine."

Vaska Tumir -> Vladimir Boronenko 24 Feb 2015 21:23

I beg to differ: there was nothing the matter with the Budapest Memorandum of Agreement of 1994 which guaranteed the territorial integrity of Ukraine. Unfortunately, in November 2013, the EU decided to violate the terms of the Budapest Memo by presenting the then government of Ukraine with an economic ultimatum (something expressly forbidden by Article 3 of that international document several EU countries were signatories to).

Had the EU honoured the terms of the Budapest Memo and had it agreed to the trilateral economic deliberations both Ukraine and Russia were asking for, nothing of the subsequent mess and the slaughter Kiev's brought to Donbass would have happened.

The situation can still be rectified by recognizing the new Donetsk and Lugansk Republics as parts of a federal state, along the lines of Switzerland, say, thus preserving Ukraine as a country. Such a solution to the chaos NATO and the EU have brought about would be part of what Jonathan Steele suggests by saying that "a declaration of Ukrainian non-alignment as part of an internationally negotiated settlement, and UN Security Council guarantees of that status, would bring instant de-escalation and make a lasting ceasefire possible in eastern Ukraine".

HollyOldDog Ecolophant 24 Feb 2015 17:44

America does not have a language of its own, it is more correctly called a Dialect of English.

HollyOldDog Dreikaiserbund 24 Feb 2015 17:33

Russian invasion? What invasion? It's just a myth created by the incompetent.

Colin Robinson 24 Feb 2015 17:04

I'm impressed by what Sakwa says about the "monist" versus "pluralist" models of Ukrainian statehood. Indeed the recent "anti terrorist operations" can be seen as failed attempts by the monists to impose their model by force on the south and east.

If the terms "monist" and "pluralist" come to be used more widely in discussion about the conflict, the world may begin to get more of a handle on what has been happening.

Kalkriese -> senya 24 Feb 2015 14:38

And you mean no-one on the US/Ukrainian side is not lying ?

There is a conspiracy of silence in Washington and Kiev about the true nature of the Neo Nazis operating as regular units within the Ukrainian army.

Putin is merely playing back by their rules and the fact he is successful in reclaiming Crimea is the cause of all the sour grapes emanating from Kiev.

Kalkriese -> jezzam 24 Feb 2015 14:30

"His last thesis - that the east-west reconciliation between Europe and Russia was somehow scuppered by the US and NATO is very hard to follow, or swallow."

Are you really so naive ? Or just disingenuous ?

Kalkriese -> prostak 24 Feb 2015 14:26

"Russian troops have been proven many times"
Really? By whom ? Where?
Let's have some proof...

StopPretending -> MiaPia2015 24 Feb 2015 14:08

there was no 'Ukraine' state until Stalin created it. Perhaps that was the problem?

MiaPia2015 24 Feb 2015 13:31

Steele's analysis, and Sakwas book have one fatal flaw. The origins of this crisis did not start in 1991 with the end of the cold war, but rather its end allowed tensions that had been simmering since the Holodomor of the 1930s when millions of ethnic Ukrainians were starved to death by Stalin in an orchestrated genocide that then allowed ethnic Russians to move into Ukrainian territory. The desire to have an independent, Ukraine-speaking nation have always been there and are no different from the desire of any other country. What we have now is almost an exact repeat of what happened then.

Steve -> Ennever 22 Feb 2015 19:57

An interesting article indeed.

The Odessa massacre if nothing else was evidence of the MSM's bias on this subject.

50+ people being burnt alive for expressing their opinions seems a choice topic for our "je suis charlie" fanatic press. And yet we heard.... crickets - because it didn't suit their "we support Kiev" agenda.

But Odessa wasn't the only atrocity in May 2014. The victory parade in Mariupol, May 9th. The National Guard arrive, possibly expecting a town full of Russian terrorists, but find civilians celebrating, understandably irate at the intrusion of military hardware and troops, who then open fire on them anyway.

Did this get reported in the west?

jezzam 22 Feb 2015 14:49

A serious commentator like Steele putting Russia's case is much needed. His comments about Yatsenyuk do not add much that is new though. Yatsenyuk is very anti-Russian - this was already known. His popularity has in fact been much boosted by anti- Russian feelings in Ukraine induced by Putin's military agression. His party is now the largest in the Ukraine parliament.

Steele's discussion of the Monist and pluralist views is all very well, but he does not discuss the kleptocratic view favoured by Putin and Yanukovych. The main cause of the revolution in Kiev was not the conflict between Monist and pluralist views, but the massive corruption and subversion of democracy in Ukraine, modelled on that of Russia. In Russia the ruling elite cream more than 30% of state income into their own pockets by corrupt practices. Yanukovych had established the same system in Ukraine. He was also well on the way to corrupting the judiciary. He had already locked up his main political opponent on a trumped up charge - again following the Putin model of government.

Steeles's solution of "a declaration of Ukrainian non-alignment as part of an internationally negotiated settlement, and UN Security Council guarantees of that status" sounds good. Is this to be imposed on Ukraine though? What does it mean? I thought Ukraine was already unaligned before this crisis started. They already had guarantees of their territorial integrity from Russia, the US and UK as well. Fat lot of good that has done them.

His last thesis - that the east-west reconciliation between Europe and Russia was somehow scuppered by the US and NATO is very hard to follow, or swallow. It is true that NATO is totally dominated by the US - but this is because they spend considerably more on defence than the rest of NATO put together. To this extent, European foreign policy is dominated by the US - this is entirely Europe's own choice and fault though.

As to Steele's claim that Putin is being demonised, insults between countries are not productive and leaders should be treated with respect by other countries. However it is difficult to treat with respect someone who does not keep his word and lies to your face, particularly when these lies are so transparent. Brezhnev and Andropov never did this - at least not so blatantly.

tiojo 22 Feb 2015 12:50

"......that Nato exists to manage the risks created by its existence".

Now if only the Guardian's current journalists would read this book we might get some decent coverage of events in Ukraine and Russia.

Marilyn -> Justice 21 Feb 2015 22:37

My only argument would be the assessment of blame re the snipers - 3 studies have shown them to be from 'the new coalition' and not old gov't, which is in line with the telephone call of Catherine Ashton and Urmas Paet,

Standupwoman 21 Feb 2015 21:02

Excellent, balanced article, and I really have to buy this book. I only wonder why the Guardian hasn't included this on its 'Ukraine' page for 19th February...

GuyCybershy -> sbmfc 21 Feb 2015 17:06

Especially in the US the public needs every issue distilled to good vs. evil. Anything more complex and they will reject it. This is the result of decades of "divide and conquer" politics.

Vladimir Boronenko 21 Feb 2015 08:21

"Even today at this late stage, a declaration of Ukrainian non-alignment as part of an internationally negotiated settlement, and UN Security Council guarantees of that status, would bring instant de-escalation and make a lasting ceasefire possible in eastern Ukraine." No it wouldn't. It is nothing but wishful thinking and delusion all over again. Ukraine had had that status already, and only scrapped it in December by a constitutional Parliament vote exactly because it showed its complete uselessness and impotence at the face of real-life threats. Just like the Budapest Memorandum of 1994 guaranteeing security of Ukraine, with one of the guarantors attacking and the other two looking on, although, if one was to stick to the letter of the Memo, of course, they are not bound to be involved unless its a nuclear threat.

Johnlockett 20 Feb 2015 19:21

Excellent article. Very balance and very near to the truth. Thank you
John Lockett

Statingobvious 20 Feb 2015 14:28

An exceptionally unbiased piece where otherwise Russia and Putin bashing (& twisting of facts & outright lying) is the rule.

mike42 20 Feb 2015 10:04

"The most disturbing novelty of the Ukrainian crisis is the way Putin and other Russian leaders are routinely demonised. At the height of the cold war when the dispute between Moscow and the west was far more dangerous, backed as it was by the danger of nuclear catastrophe, Brezhnev and Andropov were never treated to such public insults by western commentators and politicians."

Need more be said?

Dreikaiserbund Les Mills 20 Feb 2015 09:14

Challenging the 'MSM script' does not make you a Putinbot. Deriding anyone who supports Ukrainian sovereignty, who is opposed to the Russian invasion and trumpeting Vladimir as a great and wise leader - that is what makes you a Putinbot.

EnriqueFerro -> theshonny 19 Feb 2015 19:57

Thank you for the info on 'The War Against Putin' by M.S. King. I'll look for it, because even if it is pro-Putin, it is nonetheless interesting in order to check the rabid and massive anti-Putin and Russia-hating disease spreading out there.

EnriqueFerro -> Mari5064 19 Feb 2015 19:53

Mari, I'm afraid you read too many tabloids.

EnriqueFerro 19 Feb 2015 19:51

This is an excellent book, of which I'm finishing its reading now; it can be read avidly, because it says the truth, in a dispassionate and academic narrative, far from the typically stupid accounts in the Western media and in the mouths of our gullible and ignorant politicians. Read it and learn a lot about Ukraine, Russia, the EU, and the US/NATO.
Usually interesting books which don't follow the official record are not displayed in the mass bookshops such as Floyds or Waterstones (to name two of the more serious in the UK). It is a way of censorship, to make it difficult for the public to find critical stuff. I found a lone copy well hidden in the history section at WS. A miracle! I took it quickly, and wonder if it was replaced!!!

Les Mills -> leafbinder 19 Feb 2015 19:34

As in the endless accusations of being a "Putinbot" if you have the temerity to challenge the MSM script. Incidentally, I'm surprised that this article has only a handful of comments. I came here via a link on Google news so I can only assume that the Guardian have it hidden away on their site, which definitely fits the anti-Russian agenda.

leafbinder 19 Feb 2015 17:37

By far THE best analysis of what sounds like a most insightful book. The reviewer has done us all a great service, since without it we would have never heard about the book from any other "NATO-Western" source. Even worse, the author of the book would be accused of not being "real" as is often the accusation when a comment appears that does not swallow Western propaganda line-hook-and-sinker.

John Hansen 19 Feb 2015 14:31

Jonathan Steele:

Superb analysis of a significant book.

:-)

theshonny 19 Feb 2015 13:15

Bought 'The War Against Putin' by M.S. King a short while ago, and found it going so much pro-Putin that it lost its impact. So now I hope for a more balanced account.

I have a strong suspicion that the demonising of Putin is at least in part a method to draw attention away from US (and maybe Israeli) warmongering of the last decades, so I hope this book will give a fairly balanced account of what's really taking place in Crimea and Ukraine.

Also I suspect that the CIA is, true to form, stirring up the Ukrainians so to destabilise Russian influence.

sbmfc 19 Feb 2015 07:31

I think the demonisation of Putin stems from the influence of Hollywood narratives in our societal perception.

The idea of the villain is so commonplace that is widely assumed that anyone with a different agenda to ones own is perceived to be attempting to working directly against our own personal interests rather than in aid of their own different and completely independent interests.

Essentially everything has been so dumbed down that only a good/evil narrative can be comprehended and the labels are only fit one way. The facts themselves are irrelevant.

AnyFictionalName 19 Feb 2015 05:50

When PM Yatsenyuk said:

I don't want Ukrainian youths (i.e. those who consider their native language to be Ukrainian or Russian) to learn the Russian language, I want them to learn the English language.

Is that kind of racism, inferiority complex or just sheer stupidity?

[Feb 11, 2015] The Bout Opening – Stick to Checkers, America. Not Up In Here

See also comments to Ukraine: draft dodgers face jail as Kiev struggles to find new fighters by Shaun Walker
Notable quotes:
"... Take a look at this exposure of Grauniad bias: ..."
"... "We have to twist arms when countries don't do what we need them to" ..."
"... Ukraine President Poroshenko Threatens Martial Law: http://t.co/YiPgu0yPEY His main target: rising dissent in western Ukraine. ..."
Feb 11, 2015 | marknesop.wordpress.com

Moscow Exile , February 11, 2015 at 8:38 am

Take a look at this exposure of Grauniad bias:

Luhansk Women Curse Ukrainian Rocket Attack – Guardian Blames "Pro-Russian Rebels"

patient observer, February 11, 2015 at 9:02 am

Per:

http://rt.com/news/231279-obama-foreign-policy-power/

Our Nobel peace prize wiener says

"We have to twist arms when countries don't do what we need them to"

and if arm twisting does not work we will murder your families, embargo food and medicine, destroy your economy, lay waste to a generation of your children, and blacken your name for all history.

He is truly a stinky turd in the cesspool that is Washington DC. But fear not, Hillary Clinton will be a worthy successor and will out-stink, out-murder and out-destroy Obama.

Who in America can stop this madness? (rhetorical/trick question, no one can).

Warren, February 11, 2015 at 6:53 am

Ukraine President Poroshenko Threatens Martial Law: http://t.co/YiPgu0yPEY His main target: rising dissent in western Ukraine.

- Justin Raimondo (@JustinRaimondo) February 11, 2015

Moscow Exile , February 11, 2015 at 1:10 am
Another Walker special:

Ukraine: draft dodgers face jail as Kiev struggles to find new fighters

The government has avoided officially declaring a state of war, instead referring to the operations in the east as an anti-terrorism operation, despite clear evidence of Russian military incursion. Part of the reason for this is the fact that Kiev would have trouble securing a much-needed support package from the International Monetary Fund if it was officially at war.

A series of gruesome videos, sometimes shown on Russian television, has increased the psychological pressure on Ukrainians. One, released last month, showed a rebel commander waving a sword in the faces of bloodied Ukrainian soldiers, slicing off their insignias and forcing the men to eat them.

Shit! I must have missed that one!

"A friend of mine told me his friend was down there in the east and they ran into Chechens, who sliced off all their testicles. There were about 100 of them, and the Chechens castrated the lot of them. If I get called up, I think I'll go into hiding. I want a family and kids."

'Kin' hell!!!!!!!

karl1haushofer , February 10, 2015 at 11:21 pm

"It may have escaped your notice, but Putin and Moscow have been calling for a ceasefire all along"

I have grown to hate the whole word of "ceasefire" during this war. A real ceasefire would be great. But it is not going to happen until Kiev military is fully defeated!

Another bogus "ceasefire" in Minsk means the following:

1. Kiev gets to withdraw its men AND WEAPONS out of the Debaltsevo cauldron and the rebels will not be allowed to stop it..
2. The rebels will not be able to give a big blow to the Kiev military by either annihilating or at least capturing the most competent part of their military in Debaltsevo and their weapons.
3. The thousands of Kiev troops in Debaltsevo cauldron AND THEIR WEAPONS will be used in the future against Novorossiya.
4. The shelling of civilians will continue as it was before. The "ceasefire" will not be applied to Kiev side, only to rebels.
5. NATO will start the training and arming of Kiev troops. Next offensive will start next spring.
6. The morale of the rebels will take a bit hit. They will realize that their military efforts and success is meaningless as they are not allowed win this war.

Moscow must not allow Kiev to withdraw its troops and weapons out of that cauldron in any circumstances. That would be a treason against the troops that fought to create that cauldron. And that would be a treason against the whole Novorossiya.

This war will not end until one side is fully defeated. It will be either Kiev or Novorossiya. Annihilating or capturing the Kiev troops and weapons in Debaltsevo cauldron would be a big military defeat for Kiev.

marknesop, February 11, 2015 at 8:00 am

"This war will not end until one side is fully defeated. It will be either Kiev or Novorossiya. Annihilating or capturing the Kiev troops and weapons in Debaltsevo cauldron would be a big military defeat for Kiev."

On the contrary, the war could continue for many years yet without either side firing a shot, in much the same way the Georgian government never accepted the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia and even designated a ministerial position for winning them back into the fold. Disagreement over the borders within Ukraine will keep them out of NATO for the foreseeable future, while their ruined economy will keep them out of the EU. A future government may mend its ties with Russia, but if it does not, Ukraine is doomed to decades of poverty and a steady drain of its population for better prospects. It can thank the west for that, and its own population's extremist element.

Once again, there is no reason for Putin to become "the most hated man in Novorossiya" if it shakes out as you describe. The rebels must accept the deal on their own behalf, and it is not for Putin to agree to anything; Russia is simply acting as a sort of guarantor, by being part of the agreement but kind of like an honest broker, to ensure the western countries keep their word.

I agree the Ukrainian forces should not be permitted to withdraw from Debalseve with their weapons, after getting cauldroned for the second time due to their own stupidity, lack of tactical knowledge and poor leadership. but i doubt that will happen, unless the rebels are idiot negotiators, because Semenchenko's battalion had to leave their weapons behind when they were allowed out of the southern cauldron, and it plainly did not teach the Ukies anything. Why would they be allowed to keep their weapons this time? But even if they do not, weapons are not going to be a problem to replace, and you know it.

[Feb 10, 2015] Merkel to meet Obama amid growing US scepticism over Ukraine peace talks

Notable quotes:
"... They pushed and pushed without any regard for people they tramped underfoot expecting Russia to fold any day and beg for mercy. ..."
"... Chechnya - Islamist insurgency like what Iraq is facing. S. Ossetia. - Georgian shelling and invasion of this province designed to get NATO to help out. Instead the Russians deal to the invaders. Sorry mate - your argument is as flaky as the hoary old one of Iran wanting to annihilate Israel based on a mistranslated Ahmedinejad speech (which some historically challenged folks still try and drag up) ..."
"... When "destabilisation" looks like a western sponsored coup, quacks like a western sponsored coup..... ..."
"... Putin will be crucified in Russia if he is seen pushing the rebels to accept an agreement against their interests. The bottom line is unless the West gives strong indications that it is prepared to negotiate in good faith, the commodity it so far lacked, nothing will happen. If the West waits much longer, the only subject for negotiations will be an unconditional surrender of the Ukrainian army in Donbass. ..."
"... One of the latest statements of Angela Merkel was: "We want to establish security in Europe with Russia, not against Russia" (0:20 in this video). Sorry, but to me it does not sound like preparation "for a generational, long-haul effort peacefully containing and isolating Russia". ..."
Feb 10, 2015 | The Guardian

sodtheproles ID1439675 10 Feb 2015 16:51

Wrong. The EU and Americans started this when refusing Yanukovich more time to consider the trade deal, and when encouraging the billionaires to send their thugs onto Maidan. Tsarev and many others were aware that a coup was on the menu back in October 2013, when he spoke in the Rada. The EU deal had the support of the billionaires, not least because it offered them the chance to apply on a wider stage the skills they had acquired defrauding the Ukrainian state in the 90s, whereas if Ukraine turned towards the Eurasian Union, they'd have to deal with Putin, who if nothing else a reined in the billionaires.

caliento 10 Feb 2015 15:52

Wonder why Putin is welcomed by Turkey, Egypt, Hungary, Greece? It is called respect for a leader who stands behind his position showing no fear. Obama, Merkel, Hollande, Cameron E.U., NATO have no respect. And why should they? Obama's "yellow line" is constantly on display along with the rest of the misfits in Europe. More talks, more "signed" "peace" agreements? More Russian lies? Is this group of misfits just "stuck on stupid"? Putin has uttered another threat....that should be enough for the misfits to surrender & deny reality on the ground & leave Ukraine abandoned once again. I taught Bush was bad but Obama is one for the history books on how not to be a "world leader".

Yuriy11 -> TeeJayzed Addy 10 Feb 2015 13:12

And the ally of what Ukraine wish to be the USA? If America considers itself as the guarantor of freedom, democracy and protection of human rights it should support the population of Donbass and Lugansk. The population of these regions of Ukraine wished to have only the rights which are written down in the country Constitution.

Instead of guaranteeing it these rights, the new management of Ukraine began to bomb and fire at peace cities of Donetsk and Lugansk areas. Instead of solving all problems by negotiations. Also Poroshenko, Yatsenyuk and other steels openly to glorify Banderu - the fascist, the military criminal. The youth has started to use nazi symbolics and nazi slogans.

Can be the USA wishes to become the ally of new fascists? Judging by statements, Obama about desire to deliver to Ukraine the weapon, very similar, that it is going to support fascist government Poroshenko.

EugeneGur 10 Feb 2015 10:46

Merkel is the stiffest opponent of supplying weapons, while holding firm against any other concessions to Putin

Why no concessions? Is that how negotiations are conducted, without any concessions on one side, with all the concessions on the other? I understand this is the American style. But it should be obvious by now to everybody with half a brain that Putin is not the type to be easily intimidated. He can be negotiated with but not blackmailed. They should've also known before they started this mess that Russia isn't Iraq, Libya, Yugoslavia or even Vietnam but a much bigger, nastier and better armed country. Germany, of all countries, should've known that you don't want to piss Russia off, you really don't.

What I see in all these jerking movements is a bunch of very scared "world leaders" who have no idea what to do next. They pushed and pushed without any regard for people they tramped underfoot expecting Russia to fold any day and beg for mercy. When it didn't happen and looks unlikely to happen, there is no plan B. And, of course, honest in good faith negotiations with Russia are entirely out of the question. They just don't know what it means.

Angela Merkel and Barack Obama are under pressure to shore up western unity over the Ukraine crisis

Who cares about your "unity"? We have a pretty good idea what kind of "unity" that is. People are dying over there, and these bunch of cheating clowns are concerned with saving whatever is left of their faces. Disgusting.

Albert_Jacka_VC 10 Feb 2015 08:53

As usual, the Russophobes don't get it. But they will!

This morning NAF scouts spotted NATO tanks inside the encirclement (cauldron) at Debaltseve. According to their information the possibility is strong that up to 25% of the trapped army may be NATO. !

Shell remnants marked clearly with US identifying numbers from 155mm shells, shot by the Paladin artillery system have been recovered from areas the Ukrainian army have attacked civilian targets.

If the NATO troops are there - (who else would be running the complicated military equipment?) - Zackharchenko's people may display them to the world.

Everyone will see that the junta that brought us a non-existent Russian invasion has illegitimate and illegal support from NATO's warmongers!

This explains both the US and EU fudging a new peace initiative. If NATO troops are taken captive, what then?

Then they are, by Poro's own admission, war criminals. And their urgers (Kerry, Nuland, Stoltenberg, Rasmussen, and the whole foul rabble, are war criminals too.

Елена Петрова 9 Feb 2015 21:29

Powerful Documentary on the People of Donbass and why NATO will be in a Tough Fight Should it Invade the Region

http://www.veteranstoday.com/2015/02/07/powerful-documentary-on-the-people-of-donbass-and-why-nato-will-be-in-a-tough-fight-should-it-invade-the-region/

And yet another says, "Who started it? Everyone knows who started this. How to put it better? Everything started by America's hallooing. The same sh#t happened with Georgia, and now here in Ukraine."

Albert_Jacka_VC -> jezzam 9 Feb 2015 21:10

All your info is wrong. Putin himself advocated Ukraine enter a trading arrangement with BOTH Russia and the EU. The EU would have none of it.

Or rather, Nuland banned it. The EU had no say. We know what Nuland said.
The coup was a violent, murderous act, and Yanukovych fled after death threats, because his disarmed Berkut could not protect him.

As to Putin's actions in Ukraine, you buy the spin in the Western press. that's why you're deluded. Donetzkers fight to stay alive, against Kolomoisky's killers.
Ukraine is illegal, Nazi, and now defeated. Its currency crashed 15% yesterday. How much today?

That is why the warmongers are flapping about. No other reason than that their war on Russia via 'Ukraine' is a flop.

Albert_Jacka_VC -> david wright 9 Feb 2015 20:43

Ukraine is not a sovereign state. Ukraine is an illegal junta of Nazis who took power by murder, and threatrs of murder. that is why even their Ukrainian citizens will not fight for the junta.

Listen to the babushka [turn captions on] --

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

preventallwarsdotorg 9 Feb 2015 19:40

From the Obama-Merkel Washington press conference; on Ukraine, Angela Merkel seemed optimistic on the chances of 'diplomacy'. But President Obama seemed so determined in 'seeing-off' President Putin by any means; repeatedly, labelling him 'the aggressor'.

Does President Obama have a personal problem with President Putin?
Unfortunately, terrible historic armed conflicts arise for populations from intractable inter-personal disagreements between their antagonistic national political leaders. But while their personal safeties are secured, their populations are destroyed.

National leaders still can't see that nowadays wars generally have 'un-winnable' and frustrating outcomes for even the best equipped militaries. Yet, with seeming careless abandon, their inclinations to increase arms in wars remain unbridled.

But why did none of the correspondents at the Press conference press the leaders on their likely expectations for Ukraine, Europe and the world if more arms are sent to Ukraine against Russia!
If national political leaders would be victims of their sponsored wars, would they be as insistent with such risky, futile and potentially increased destructive recipes?

Yet, the world still seems as impervious to politicians' handling of war crises!
Why can't it be more innovative to accept or devise better alternatives to the persistently failed and disastrous politicians' bent for even more wars?!

Andrew Nichols -> Milton 9 Feb 2015 19:02

And as for those who say they believe that Crimea and Eastern Ukraine are all that Putin is after, I suggest you look at Russia's interventions in Chechnya and Georgia/S.Ossetia,

Chechnya - Islamist insurgency like what Iraq is facing. S. Ossetia. - Georgian shelling and invasion of this province designed to get NATO to help out. Instead the Russians deal to the invaders. Sorry mate - your argument is as flaky as the hoary old one of Iran wanting to annihilate Israel based on a mistranslated Ahmedinejad speech (which some historically challenged folks still try and drag up)

Andrew Nichols Milton 9 Feb 2015 18:57

"But the west did not send troops or tanks into Ukraine. It didn't attempt political destabilisation." When "destabilisation" looks like a western sponsored coup, quacks like a western sponsored coup.....

EugeneGur 9 Feb 2015 18:45

amid growing US scepticism that European peace talks with Russia will succeed in deterring its continued military support for separatists.

I am pretty sure that Russia supports the rebels militarily to a certain extent although I am not sure how far that support goes. Most of Russia is convinced that it doesn't go far enough. Considering that nobody has been able to prove anything (where are these marvelous American satellites when you need them?), probably, Russian public is right, the support is modest, so it's easy to hide. The West wants Russia to stop supporting the rebels. My question is why would Russia do that? What's in it for Russia?

You will say the magic word "sanctions". First, Russia is not all that eager about the sanctions to be lifted, because we know they are hurting Europe as much, if not more. Second, Russia doesn't believe the West, and for a good reason. Putin organized the Minsk agreements single-handedly and made the rebels accept it. It was a gift that Putin gave both to the West and to Ukraine, because he convinced the rebel army to stop in the middle of a very successful offensive. By doing so, he risked a lot of his political capital, since everybody in Russia as well as in Donbass hated it and believed it was a mistake, which it turned out to be. What did he get in return? Less than nothing - he got additional sanctions, additional demands, which, I hope proved to him finally that the West is double-dealing and entirely untrustworthy.

Putin will be crucified in Russia if he is seen pushing the rebels to accept an agreement against their interests. The bottom line is unless the West gives strong indications that it is prepared to negotiate in good faith, the commodity it so far lacked, nothing will happen. If the West waits much longer, the only subject for negotiations will be an unconditional surrender of the Ukrainian army in Donbass.

Paul Easton 9 Feb 2015 18:30

Ok now we know what Obama wants. He says he doesn't want to arm Ukraine but as usual he is lying because his new choice for War Secy is in favor. The remaining question is whether European countries will go along with this insanity. European people had better take to the streets en masse if they value their lives.

Come gather 'round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You'll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you
Is worth savin'
Then you better start swimmin'
Or you'll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin'.

alsojusticeseeker 9 Feb 2015 17:57

US secretary of state John Kerry said in an interview aired on Sunday. "Hopefully he will come to a point where he realises the damage he is doing is not just to the global order, but he is doing enormous damage to Russia itself."

So, finally Kerry unveils that they are after ordinary people in Russia, not exclusively after "Putin's close circle" and all that crap.

PeraIlic jezzam 9 Feb 2015 17:22

Perhaps if Russia really wants E. Ukraine it should be allowed to take it, with all the consequences this entails, including the economic burden of rebuilding the areas... It seems that these guys from Kiev have similar ideas as you.

Huge explosion at Donetsk chemical plant, Kiev blames 'dropped cigarette butt' (VIDEO)

The spokesman for Kiev's Anti-Terrorist Operation said that rebels were at fault for the accident.

"This was caused by a dropped cigarette butt," Andrey Lysenko told the media on Monday.

"Accidents often happen in factories where no one is responsible for fire safety. Well, it's chaos, and they are barbarians."

Not all pro-Kiev officials agreed.

The Ukrainian military deployed a Smerch (the BM-30 Tornado) multiple rocket system to shell the area in the city, Boris Filatov, former deputy head of the industrial Dnepropetrovsk Region and a member of the Ukrainian parliament (Verkhovna Rada), said on his Facebook page.

According to Filatov, the men who fired the missiles "do not know what they hit because they were shooting based on coordinates."

Earlier, Ukrainian far-right politician and paramilitary commander Dmitry Yarosh, who is involved in the Kiev military action in southeastern Ukraine, confirmed on his Facebook page that the explosion was caused by Ukrainian artillery.

PeraIlic 9 Feb 2015 17:13

Merkel is the stiffest opponent of supplying weapons, while holding firm against any other concessions to Putin and calculating that the west may need to prepare for a generational, long-haul effort peacefully containing and isolating Russia and seeking to build up Ukraine.

One of the latest statements of Angela Merkel was: "We want to establish security in Europe with Russia, not against Russia" (0:20 in this video). Sorry, but to me it does not sound like preparation "for a generational, long-haul effort peacefully containing and isolating Russia".

[Feb 10, 2015] Merkel to meet Obama amid growing US scepticism over Ukraine peace talks

Notable quotes:
"... They pushed and pushed without any regard for people they tramped underfoot expecting Russia to fold any day and beg for mercy. ..."
"... Chechnya - Islamist insurgency like what Iraq is facing. S. Ossetia. - Georgian shelling and invasion of this province designed to get NATO to help out. Instead the Russians deal to the invaders. Sorry mate - your argument is as flaky as the hoary old one of Iran wanting to annihilate Israel based on a mistranslated Ahmedinejad speech (which some historically challenged folks still try and drag up) ..."
"... When "destabilisation" looks like a western sponsored coup, quacks like a western sponsored coup..... ..."
"... Putin will be crucified in Russia if he is seen pushing the rebels to accept an agreement against their interests. The bottom line is unless the West gives strong indications that it is prepared to negotiate in good faith, the commodity it so far lacked, nothing will happen. If the West waits much longer, the only subject for negotiations will be an unconditional surrender of the Ukrainian army in Donbass. ..."
"... One of the latest statements of Angela Merkel was: "We want to establish security in Europe with Russia, not against Russia" (0:20 in this video). Sorry, but to me it does not sound like preparation "for a generational, long-haul effort peacefully containing and isolating Russia". ..."
Feb 10, 2015 | The Guardian

sodtheproles ID1439675 10 Feb 2015 16:51

Wrong. The EU and Americans started this when refusing Yanukovich more time to consider the trade deal, and when encouraging the billionaires to send their thugs onto Maidan. Tsarev and many others were aware that a coup was on the menu back in October 2013, when he spoke in the Rada. The EU deal had the support of the billionaires, not least because it offered them the chance to apply on a wider stage the skills they had acquired defrauding the Ukrainian state in the 90s, whereas if Ukraine turned towards the Eurasian Union, they'd have to deal with Putin, who if nothing else a reined in the billionaires.

caliento 10 Feb 2015 15:52

Wonder why Putin is welcomed by Turkey, Egypt, Hungary, Greece? It is called respect for a leader who stands behind his position showing no fear. Obama, Merkel, Hollande, Cameron E.U., NATO have no respect. And why should they? Obama's "yellow line" is constantly on display along with the rest of the misfits in Europe. More talks, more "signed" "peace" agreements? More Russian lies? Is this group of misfits just "stuck on stupid"? Putin has uttered another threat....that should be enough for the misfits to surrender & deny reality on the ground & leave Ukraine abandoned once again. I taught Bush was bad but Obama is one for the history books on how not to be a "world leader".

Yuriy11 -> TeeJayzed Addy 10 Feb 2015 13:12

And the ally of what Ukraine wish to be the USA? If America considers itself as the guarantor of freedom, democracy and protection of human rights it should support the population of Donbass and Lugansk. The population of these regions of Ukraine wished to have only the rights which are written down in the country Constitution.

Instead of guaranteeing it these rights, the new management of Ukraine began to bomb and fire at peace cities of Donetsk and Lugansk areas. Instead of solving all problems by negotiations. Also Poroshenko, Yatsenyuk and other steels openly to glorify Banderu - the fascist, the military criminal. The youth has started to use nazi symbolics and nazi slogans.

Can be the USA wishes to become the ally of new fascists? Judging by statements, Obama about desire to deliver to Ukraine the weapon, very similar, that it is going to support fascist government Poroshenko.

EugeneGur 10 Feb 2015 10:46

Merkel is the stiffest opponent of supplying weapons, while holding firm against any other concessions to Putin

Why no concessions? Is that how negotiations are conducted, without any concessions on one side, with all the concessions on the other? I understand this is the American style. But it should be obvious by now to everybody with half a brain that Putin is not the type to be easily intimidated. He can be negotiated with but not blackmailed. They should've also known before they started this mess that Russia isn't Iraq, Libya, Yugoslavia or even Vietnam but a much bigger, nastier and better armed country. Germany, of all countries, should've known that you don't want to piss Russia off, you really don't.

What I see in all these jerking movements is a bunch of very scared "world leaders" who have no idea what to do next. They pushed and pushed without any regard for people they tramped underfoot expecting Russia to fold any day and beg for mercy. When it didn't happen and looks unlikely to happen, there is no plan B. And, of course, honest in good faith negotiations with Russia are entirely out of the question. They just don't know what it means.

Angela Merkel and Barack Obama are under pressure to shore up western unity over the Ukraine crisis

Who cares about your "unity"? We have a pretty good idea what kind of "unity" that is. People are dying over there, and these bunch of cheating clowns are concerned with saving whatever is left of their faces. Disgusting.

Albert_Jacka_VC 10 Feb 2015 08:53

As usual, the Russophobes don't get it. But they will!

This morning NAF scouts spotted NATO tanks inside the encirclement (cauldron) at Debaltseve. According to their information the possibility is strong that up to 25% of the trapped army may be NATO. !

Shell remnants marked clearly with US identifying numbers from 155mm shells, shot by the Paladin artillery system have been recovered from areas the Ukrainian army have attacked civilian targets.

If the NATO troops are there - (who else would be running the complicated military equipment?) - Zackharchenko's people may display them to the world.

Everyone will see that the junta that brought us a non-existent Russian invasion has illegitimate and illegal support from NATO's warmongers!

This explains both the US and EU fudging a new peace initiative. If NATO troops are taken captive, what then?

Then they are, by Poro's own admission, war criminals. And their urgers (Kerry, Nuland, Stoltenberg, Rasmussen, and the whole foul rabble, are war criminals too.

Елена Петрова 9 Feb 2015 21:29

Powerful Documentary on the People of Donbass and why NATO will be in a Tough Fight Should it Invade the Region

http://www.veteranstoday.com/2015/02/07/powerful-documentary-on-the-people-of-donbass-and-why-nato-will-be-in-a-tough-fight-should-it-invade-the-region/

And yet another says, "Who started it? Everyone knows who started this. How to put it better? Everything started by America's hallooing. The same sh#t happened with Georgia, and now here in Ukraine."

Albert_Jacka_VC -> jezzam 9 Feb 2015 21:10

All your info is wrong. Putin himself advocated Ukraine enter a trading arrangement with BOTH Russia and the EU. The EU would have none of it.

Or rather, Nuland banned it. The EU had no say. We know what Nuland said.
The coup was a violent, murderous act, and Yanukovych fled after death threats, because his disarmed Berkut could not protect him.

As to Putin's actions in Ukraine, you buy the spin in the Western press. that's why you're deluded. Donetzkers fight to stay alive, against Kolomoisky's killers.
Ukraine is illegal, Nazi, and now defeated. Its currency crashed 15% yesterday. How much today?

That is why the warmongers are flapping about. No other reason than that their war on Russia via 'Ukraine' is a flop.

Albert_Jacka_VC -> david wright 9 Feb 2015 20:43

Ukraine is not a sovereign state. Ukraine is an illegal junta of Nazis who took power by murder, and threatrs of murder. that is why even their Ukrainian citizens will not fight for the junta.

Listen to the babushka [turn captions on] --

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

preventallwarsdotorg 9 Feb 2015 19:40

From the Obama-Merkel Washington press conference; on Ukraine, Angela Merkel seemed optimistic on the chances of 'diplomacy'. But President Obama seemed so determined in 'seeing-off' President Putin by any means; repeatedly, labelling him 'the aggressor'.

Does President Obama have a personal problem with President Putin?
Unfortunately, terrible historic armed conflicts arise for populations from intractable inter-personal disagreements between their antagonistic national political leaders. But while their personal safeties are secured, their populations are destroyed.

National leaders still can't see that nowadays wars generally have 'un-winnable' and frustrating outcomes for even the best equipped militaries. Yet, with seeming careless abandon, their inclinations to increase arms in wars remain unbridled.

But why did none of the correspondents at the Press conference press the leaders on their likely expectations for Ukraine, Europe and the world if more arms are sent to Ukraine against Russia!
If national political leaders would be victims of their sponsored wars, would they be as insistent with such risky, futile and potentially increased destructive recipes?

Yet, the world still seems as impervious to politicians' handling of war crises!
Why can't it be more innovative to accept or devise better alternatives to the persistently failed and disastrous politicians' bent for even more wars?!

Andrew Nichols -> Milton 9 Feb 2015 19:02

And as for those who say they believe that Crimea and Eastern Ukraine are all that Putin is after, I suggest you look at Russia's interventions in Chechnya and Georgia/S.Ossetia,

Chechnya - Islamist insurgency like what Iraq is facing. S. Ossetia. - Georgian shelling and invasion of this province designed to get NATO to help out. Instead the Russians deal to the invaders. Sorry mate - your argument is as flaky as the hoary old one of Iran wanting to annihilate Israel based on a mistranslated Ahmedinejad speech (which some historically challenged folks still try and drag up)

Andrew Nichols Milton 9 Feb 2015 18:57

"But the west did not send troops or tanks into Ukraine. It didn't attempt political destabilisation." When "destabilisation" looks like a western sponsored coup, quacks like a western sponsored coup.....

EugeneGur 9 Feb 2015 18:45

amid growing US scepticism that European peace talks with Russia will succeed in deterring its continued military support for separatists.

I am pretty sure that Russia supports the rebels militarily to a certain extent although I am not sure how far that support goes. Most of Russia is convinced that it doesn't go far enough. Considering that nobody has been able to prove anything (where are these marvelous American satellites when you need them?), probably, Russian public is right, the support is modest, so it's easy to hide. The West wants Russia to stop supporting the rebels. My question is why would Russia do that? What's in it for Russia?

You will say the magic word "sanctions". First, Russia is not all that eager about the sanctions to be lifted, because we know they are hurting Europe as much, if not more. Second, Russia doesn't believe the West, and for a good reason. Putin organized the Minsk agreements single-handedly and made the rebels accept it. It was a gift that Putin gave both to the West and to Ukraine, because he convinced the rebel army to stop in the middle of a very successful offensive. By doing so, he risked a lot of his political capital, since everybody in Russia as well as in Donbass hated it and believed it was a mistake, which it turned out to be. What did he get in return? Less than nothing - he got additional sanctions, additional demands, which, I hope proved to him finally that the West is double-dealing and entirely untrustworthy.

Putin will be crucified in Russia if he is seen pushing the rebels to accept an agreement against their interests. The bottom line is unless the West gives strong indications that it is prepared to negotiate in good faith, the commodity it so far lacked, nothing will happen. If the West waits much longer, the only subject for negotiations will be an unconditional surrender of the Ukrainian army in Donbass.

Paul Easton 9 Feb 2015 18:30

Ok now we know what Obama wants. He says he doesn't want to arm Ukraine but as usual he is lying because his new choice for War Secy is in favor. The remaining question is whether European countries will go along with this insanity. European people had better take to the streets en masse if they value their lives.

Come gather 'round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You'll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you
Is worth savin'
Then you better start swimmin'
Or you'll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin'.

alsojusticeseeker 9 Feb 2015 17:57

US secretary of state John Kerry said in an interview aired on Sunday. "Hopefully he will come to a point where he realises the damage he is doing is not just to the global order, but he is doing enormous damage to Russia itself."

So, finally Kerry unveils that they are after ordinary people in Russia, not exclusively after "Putin's close circle" and all that crap.

PeraIlic jezzam 9 Feb 2015 17:22

Perhaps if Russia really wants E. Ukraine it should be allowed to take it, with all the consequences this entails, including the economic burden of rebuilding the areas... It seems that these guys from Kiev have similar ideas as you.

Huge explosion at Donetsk chemical plant, Kiev blames 'dropped cigarette butt' (VIDEO)

The spokesman for Kiev's Anti-Terrorist Operation said that rebels were at fault for the accident.

"This was caused by a dropped cigarette butt," Andrey Lysenko told the media on Monday.

"Accidents often happen in factories where no one is responsible for fire safety. Well, it's chaos, and they are barbarians."

Not all pro-Kiev officials agreed.

The Ukrainian military deployed a Smerch (the BM-30 Tornado) multiple rocket system to shell the area in the city, Boris Filatov, former deputy head of the industrial Dnepropetrovsk Region and a member of the Ukrainian parliament (Verkhovna Rada), said on his Facebook page.

According to Filatov, the men who fired the missiles "do not know what they hit because they were shooting based on coordinates."

Earlier, Ukrainian far-right politician and paramilitary commander Dmitry Yarosh, who is involved in the Kiev military action in southeastern Ukraine, confirmed on his Facebook page that the explosion was caused by Ukrainian artillery.

PeraIlic 9 Feb 2015 17:13

Merkel is the stiffest opponent of supplying weapons, while holding firm against any other concessions to Putin and calculating that the west may need to prepare for a generational, long-haul effort peacefully containing and isolating Russia and seeking to build up Ukraine.

One of the latest statements of Angela Merkel was: "We want to establish security in Europe with Russia, not against Russia" (0:20 in this video). Sorry, but to me it does not sound like preparation "for a generational, long-haul effort peacefully containing and isolating Russia".

[Feb 09, 2015] The west must talk to Vladimir Putin about Ukraine

Looks like guardian staff got new different instructions from their MI5 handlers...
Notable quotes:
"... Hove, East Sussex ..."
Feb 09, 2015 | The Guardian

David Stainwright, Hove, East Sussex

I have no love for modern capitalist Russia, or for Vladimir Putin, but there are always two sides to a conflict. Regrettably, the Guardian gives credence mainly to the anti-Putin version. In that narrative, the Russian leader is alleged to have violated Ukraine's sovereignty, though no hard evidence is offered. For those who support western Ukraine's criticism of Putin it is salutary to remember that the present government came to power via a coup. Moreover, many of its supporters are self-confessed followers of Nazi ideology.

For the Guardian, one of Putin's main transgressions has been the annexation of Crimea. But this is dangerous ground for western critics of Putin, as a moment's reflection should remind one that Israel routinely annexes Palestinian land but has never been censured for its action. Turkey, which annexed northern Cyprus, has never been subjected to sanctions. Two wrongs do not make a right, but it is morally shaky ground for western leaders to condemn one country for annexation while condoning it by another power.

As David Owen has pointed out (26 August 2014), Russian leaders are understandably worried by the eastward march of Nato, threatening its security. If we wish to avoid catastrophe in Europe the west must come to a diplomatic agreement with Russia, however difficult that may be (Report, 8 February). The alternative is unthinkable.

Tim Dyce, London

The solution to Ukraine has been floated – and ignored – before. Treat Russia as part of continental and cultural Europe. Field a joint EU peacekeeping force with Russia and Ukraine. Fly all three flags. Enforce and police the Minsk agreement. Leave Crimea for another day. Use an EU Marshall plan to rehabilitate eastern Ukraine. Recognise significant regional autonomy within a unified Ukraine. This is something the UK should lead with France and Germany, rather than waiting for Washington to let us do it.

Stephen Mennell, Dublin

David Cameron could play no part in the Moscow talks (Report, theguardian.com, 7 January). Britain is a US puppet state, which for decades has not had a foreign policy separate from that of the US. Since America precipitated the Ukraine crisis by orchestrating the coup in Kiev, it would not be appropriate for Britain to play any part in mediation.

[Feb 09, 2015] The west must talk to Vladimir Putin about Ukraine

Looks like guardian staff got new different instructions from their MI5 handlers...
Notable quotes:
"... Hove, East Sussex ..."
Feb 09, 2015 | The Guardian

David Stainwright, Hove, East Sussex

I have no love for modern capitalist Russia, or for Vladimir Putin, but there are always two sides to a conflict. Regrettably, the Guardian gives credence mainly to the anti-Putin version. In that narrative, the Russian leader is alleged to have violated Ukraine's sovereignty, though no hard evidence is offered. For those who support western Ukraine's criticism of Putin it is salutary to remember that the present government came to power via a coup. Moreover, many of its supporters are self-confessed followers of Nazi ideology.

For the Guardian, one of Putin's main transgressions has been the annexation of Crimea. But this is dangerous ground for western critics of Putin, as a moment's reflection should remind one that Israel routinely annexes Palestinian land but has never been censured for its action. Turkey, which annexed northern Cyprus, has never been subjected to sanctions. Two wrongs do not make a right, but it is morally shaky ground for western leaders to condemn one country for annexation while condoning it by another power.

As David Owen has pointed out (26 August 2014), Russian leaders are understandably worried by the eastward march of Nato, threatening its security. If we wish to avoid catastrophe in Europe the west must come to a diplomatic agreement with Russia, however difficult that may be (Report, 8 February). The alternative is unthinkable.

Tim Dyce, London

The solution to Ukraine has been floated – and ignored – before. Treat Russia as part of continental and cultural Europe. Field a joint EU peacekeeping force with Russia and Ukraine. Fly all three flags. Enforce and police the Minsk agreement. Leave Crimea for another day. Use an EU Marshall plan to rehabilitate eastern Ukraine. Recognise significant regional autonomy within a unified Ukraine. This is something the UK should lead with France and Germany, rather than waiting for Washington to let us do it.

Stephen Mennell, Dublin

David Cameron could play no part in the Moscow talks (Report, theguardian.com, 7 January). Britain is a US puppet state, which for decades has not had a foreign policy separate from that of the US. Since America precipitated the Ukraine crisis by orchestrating the coup in Kiev, it would not be appropriate for Britain to play any part in mediation.

[Feb 08, 2015] Ukraine conflict: four-nation peace talks in Minsk aim to end crisis

Notable quotes:
"... Oh yes. There is also an issue of mercenaries. It is said that the Ukrainian army encircled in the Debaltsevo cauldron has Western mercenary units that Merkel and Hollande are desperate to evacuate before the extent of the Western involvement in fully revealed. ..."
"... Lithuania has already admitted it's sending Kiev weapons. Poland likely as well given their stance. And if anyone thinks the US is quietly sitting on the sidelines given stuff such as Contragate in the past, they're almost certainly deluded. ..."
"... The German intelligence service puts the number of dead in Ukraine at closer to 50 thousand rather than 5 thousand. ..."
The Guardian

ID5868758 -> centerline 8 Feb 2015 23:44

CIA and Americans caught in the cauldron, or whatever they're calling it? That's what some on a German comment thread were saying today.

EugeneGur -> centerline 8 Feb 2015 23:44

Oh yes. There is also an issue of mercenaries. It is said that the Ukrainian army encircled in the Debaltsevo cauldron has Western mercenary units that Merkel and Hollande are desperate to evacuate before the extent of the Western involvement in fully revealed.

TuleCarbonari -> EugeneGur 8 Feb 2015 23:31

What is special about the East? It is richer in natural resources than the West. Joe Biden's son and other businessmen won't be able to operate in a politically volatile area. It must be pacified somehow.

Bullybyte -> WiseOldManNo476 8 Feb 2015 23:43

There will be no war.

Earth to WiseOldManNo476. You obviously haven't noticed. There already IS a war; it is about to escalate; and the UK will be involved in it right up to its neck.

The problem being a bully (the US) is that it becomes arrogant and expects its own way all of the time, when someone pushes back, they fold. This isn't Iraq you know.

And who is pushing back? You?

Looks like the EU will be choosing the lesser of two evils.

Yes. Listen to the tough talk by Cameron. Look how the EU ratcheted up their sanctions on Russia only a few days ago. The EU have already chosen the lesser of two reasons.

BTW, enjoy your collapsing petro dollar and associated hyper inflation coming your way very soon.

And this will be happening when? After your kids have been killed?

KrasnoArmejac Roodan 8 Feb 2015 23:20

no roodan, we should not go to war. it is ukraines fight, not ours. but we should not treat putin like he is a normal politician (or person for that matter). we should not have our newspapers asking questions that have been answered a million times before, just so we could be proud of our political corectness. you know those questions, right? questions like: are those really russians that are fighting the ukranians? it's like answering the question: is the sky blue? over and over and over again. we should not keep satellite images proving russian tanks crossing the border classified, just so mister putin could have a face-saving exit once this is all over with. because my dear roodan, contrary to what your mother (and all mothers for that matter) told you: ignoring the bully will not make him stop punching you. it will just make you a loser-for-life. if you don't trust me ask mister neville chamberlain and his piece of paper

EugeneGur 8 Feb 2015 23:13

the latest Franco-German peace initiative . . . was driven by the urgent desire to avoid a new bloodbath in the besieged Ukrainian-held town of Debaltseve

Really? What is so special about Debaltsevo that makes the European leaders so concerned about its fate? What sets it apart so decisively from Donetsk, Gorlovka, Krasnoarmeisk, Shakhtursk, and a dozen of other Donbass towns that have been pounded by artillery fire for months. Hundreds of civilians died, and the only response from our European friends was deafening silence about the killings and loud accusations against Russia of everything and anything.

I'll tell you what's special about Debaltsevo. A large number of Ukrainian troops are trapped there, and unless something is done, there are likely end up dead. This means another devastating defeat for the Ukrs, from which they are unlikely to recover. So, Merkel and Hollande rushed (or were dispatched?) to the rescue of their little nazi Ukrainian protegees. One cannot help but feel contempt for such European "leaders" and generally for what Europe turned into under American patronage.

sbmfc 8 Feb 2015 10:22

Given the still unfolding disasters in Syria and Libya surely the policy of the west attempting to pick a winner in a local conflict is completely discredited.

It may be the case that war in Europe suits the American agenda but the EU should only be focused on a peaceful solution. Borders in Europe have always been fluid and it is impossible to see the rebel areas now ever peacefully existing within Ukraine.

snowdogchampion -> Strummered 8 Feb 2015 10:17

there ARE English speaking troops that sound AMERICAN Foreign fighters filmed on ground with Kiev army not to mention the CIA agents ;-)

Kal El -> Eric Hoffmann 8 Feb 2015 10:13

And where is Kiev getting all its weapons etc from ? Their stuff was 20 year old USSR stuff. Mothballed and rusting.

Lithuania has already admitted it's sending Kiev weapons. Poland likely as well given their stance. And if anyone thinks the US is quietly sitting on the sidelines given stuff such as Contragate in the past, they're almost certainly deluded.

NoBodiesFool 8 Feb 2015 10:12

If peace breaks out what will the poor weapons dealers and their bankster backers do? Someone please think of the poor children of the weapons dealers and the banksters. Also, think of the poor children of the fossil fuel cartels that all of this is really about. They really don't have enough money and they so would like another Bugatti for New Year's. Please, give war a chance - for the children.

Rialbynot 8 Feb 2015 10:12

When the German-speaking population in South Tyrol rebelled against Italian rule in the late 1960s, the Italian government initially attempted to put down the rebellion using force.

However, a campaign of sabotage and bombings by German-speaking separatists led by the SouthTyrolean Liberation Committee continued.

Finally, the issue was resolved in 1971, when a new treaty was signed and ratified by the Austrian and Italian governments. It stipulated that disputes in South Tyrol would be submitted for settlement to the International Court of Justice in The Hague and that the province would receive greater autonomy within Italy. The new agreement proved broadly satisfactory to the parties involved and the separatist tensions soon eased.

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trentino-Alto_Adige/S%C3%BCdtirol

Europe has a blueprint for resolving the (far more deadly) East Ukraine crisis.

Asimpleguest -> CaptainBlunder 8 Feb 2015 10:09

strange - I read otherwise

''MOSCOW, December 10. /TASS/. Russian military led by Deputy Commander-in-Chief of the Ground Forces Alexander Lentsov are providing assistance to the Ukrainian south-east conflict sides in reaching compromise for deescalation of tension and troops' pullout, Chief of the Russian General Staff General Valery Gerasimov said on Wednesday.

The mission was sent at the request of the Chief of the Ukrainian General Staff, Viktor Muzhenko, said Gerasimov.''

snowdogchampion 8 Feb 2015 10:09

thanks god! mind that the US warmongers will not be part of the PEACE talks cause they want WAR at our doorstep.. McCain & Co. must be p!ssed off.. hope Merkel's security has been increased, you never know, there might be a CIA agent around

SHappens 8 Feb 2015 10:08

Merkel is due to meet Barack Obama, the US president, in Washington on Monday, in a bid to synchronise US and western European positions on Ukraine ahead of the Minsk summit. Or how to make a peaceful initiative go jeopardized. All Putin has to do is sit and wait. And let them EU and US paddle.

Merkel feels they owe the East Ukrainians to stop the war they promoted and encouraged for months but McCain says that these poor Ukrainians have the right to defend themselves. I suppose he is referring to the East Ukrainians, as they did not attack anybody in Kiev and are indeed defending themselves from undiscriminated shelling from Kiev. Let's hope the Nobel prize will honor it.

Koninklijk 8 Feb 2015 10:08

Even if there is no further escalation, these repercussions are going to be felt in Europe for a long time. We'll just have to hope nobody really wants a war in Europe, in the short or long term.

Kal El 8 Feb 2015 10:05

The German intelligence service puts the number of dead in Ukraine at closer to 50 thousand rather than 5 thousand.

Which when you think about is more of a truer number given that Ukraine is currently on its 4TH, yes 4TH mobilisation/conscription wave.

If the number of dead/injured is what Kiev claims, quite clearly they would NOT need all of these mobilisations in the last year. The current mobilisation even includes women.

[Feb 07, 2015] Fear of Vladimir Putin grows in EU capitals amid spectre of total war

theguardian.com

FranklyMrShandy -> demdike 7 Feb 2015 11:57

Oh, that sounds like a great solution!

You may as well bomb Moscow if you do that, because (as the article makes clear) to Putin the two would be equivalent.

Why the F*** were Obama and Nato so keen to have more pieces on their pie... this really bugs me. Ok, so Ukraine was not "neutral in the right way" and was under heavy Russian influence. And so? It's on Russia's doorstep for f***'s sake! What do you expect!

If China masterminded a coup in Mexico with the aim of bringing the country into a defense treaty with Beijing ... do you think that Washington would not do everything possible to stop it?

jeeeeez

Amazon10 7 Feb 2015 11:43

What people seem to have forgotten is that Russia is NOT the Soviet Union but a free market state that like all others and wants to protect it's own interests. It is confronted by agressive NATO states that have encroached on territories that they agreed they would not.

In addition thay have a circle of nuclear based with missiles pointing at them. Ukraine, which was a past soviet state but then became neutral after the fall of the Soviet Union. However the US had other ideas as voiced by their representative to the EU Newland who inadvertently had her plans for the Ukraine exposed. Their intended coup took place despite a democratically elected being in place and a government was installed committed to Western imperialism and expansion of NATO.

The population of the eastern region rejected this coup and it's nazi composition and found that the only way they could resist the military forced brought upon them by Kiev and it's western supporters was by fighting back. This is where we are at today. I am sure that Russia have aided the east with military weapons and have accept over 1million refugees. There has not been a single piece of evidence to show that Russian forces have involved on Ukraine soil. The aggressive rhetoric from the West towards Russia make the likelihood of war real and could have grave consequences for us all if we allow the real truth to be distorted in order to bring this about. The leaders of Europe must be made aware that we will not let this happen and that our constant aggression towards whoever we disagree with is not an excuse for war

dylan kerling -> Spockdem 7 Feb 2015 11:42

his post clearly implied it and if you've seen any of his other posts in other articles you would realize he clearly does seem to look at this situation as a dichotomy of good vs evil, west vs Russia.

When someone lists some atrocities while only referring to one side and completely ignoring the fact that the other has done all of it only more frequently and with less of a reason I would say he's excusing the west from it.

Lastly I'm not condoning Russia, I'm pointing out US hypocrisy and the fact that we still hear all this talk of how Russia is doing all these terrible things from our political leaders while completely white washing that we've done the very same time and time again.

If anyone is a shill is all of you that seem to think it's OK when the west does it but if those evil Russians do anything oh boy are they in trouble.

LarsNil -> Ram2009 7 Feb 2015 11:41

"Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is identified in State Department documents as an informant for the U.S. since 2006. The documents describe him as "[o]ur Ukraine (OU) insider Petro Poroshenko." The State Department documents also report that Poroshenko is "tainted by credible corruption allegations."

The most recent top official to join the Ukrainian government is Natalia A. Jaresko, a long-time State Department official, who went to Ukraine after the U.S.-sponsored Orange Revolution. Jaresko was made a Ukrainian citizen by the president on the same day he appointed her finance minister. William Boardman reports further on Jaresko:

Natalie Jaresko, is an American citizen who managed a Ukrainian-based, U.S.-created hedge fund that was charged with illegal insider trading. She also managed a CIA fund that supported 'pro-democracy' movements and laundered much of the $5 billion the U.S. spent supporting the Maidan protests that led to the Kiev coup in February 2014. Jaresko is a big fan of austerity for people in troubled economies."

http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/chomsky_and_kissinger_agree_avoid_historic_tragedy_in_ukraine_20150206

Vatslav Rente 7 Feb 2015 11:35

Fakes of the Ukrainian government. The Best.

September 9, 2014 The head of the National Bank of Ukraine Valeriya Gontareva during a round table in Kiev, said: "200 FSB agents work on loosening the Ukrainian banking system and the hryvnia" :)

February 5, 2015 "The reasons for the fall of the hryvnia - no," - said the Minister of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine Abramavičius.

February 4, 2015: $ 1/17 hryvnia, February 7, 2015 $ 1/26 hryvnia.

February 6, 2015 Former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili on Ukrainian TV channel 24: "spirit of the Ukrainian soldiers the best in the world. If you give them the necessary knowledge, skills and weapons, they will be able to capture the whole of Russia "

Damn sclerosis. Apparently he forgot how as Russia routed the Georgian army for 4 days.

Let me remind you, this man was considered for the post of head of the Anti-Corruption Committee of Ukraine. In Georgia, he declared a national search in. The Prosecutor's Office indicted in absentia Saakashvili of abuse of power, embezzlement of budget funds, the attempt to seize other people's property. The investigation is conducted from 25 October 2013, and during this period were collected 80 volumes of evidence, questioned nearly 100 witnesses.

2013 Yatsenyuk in an interview with Ukrainian TV: "In the Ukrainian authorities are amateurs!" Prime Ministers of Ukraine Azarov, Foreign exchange reserves of more than 22 billion dollars, the rate of $ 1 / 8.5 hryvnia.
Now Prime Minister Yatsenyuk, gold and currency reserves of $ 6 billion, the rate of $ 1/26 hryvnia.

Davos January 21, 2015 President of Ukraine Poroshenko: "In my country there are more than 9000 troops from the Russian Federation, 500 tanks, heavy artillery and armored vehicles."
Wow, it's strange that the separatists have not yet reached the border with Poland :)

February 7, 2015 security conference in Munich. Showing the passport of Russian citizens and military tickets Poroshenko said: "What you still need more facts, evidence of the presence of Russian troops in Ukraine?"
Ok, but the soldiers of the Russian Army during the service do not have passports, only military ID. But of course when traveling to Ukraine they are given a complete set, in case of capture. Ha ha ha :)

The Mayor Of Kiev, Vitali Klitschko. At a meeting with Ukrainian soldiers: "they Say that there is no body armor, but it is physical protection. The main armor for each of you, is have a mother, wife, children... Social standards - this is the armor. When everyone knows that if something happens, his family will receive good compensation and will not have to beg" :) Uh... good consolation for the soldiers...

You do not cast doubt on the adequacy of the new government of Ukraine? I think that these clowns, already tired most of the Ukrainians.

cherryredguitar Yubin Underok 7 Feb 2015 11:16

Here is why: Russia has an army of online shills.

Of course, those nice trustworthy people at GCHQ and Langley wouldn't do stuff like that, would they?

[Feb 07, 2015] Putin and Ukraine leader to hold phone talks after inconclusive end to summit

Notable quotes:
"... Moscow is not satisfied with the attempts to restrain the development of Russia and to preserve the unipolar world. ..."
"... there are really an attempt to keep our development by a variety of means, ..."
"... To stay in the belief that he can do all, while others can be something that only permuted by him and only in his best interest, "- said the head of state. ..."
"... If someone likes it, wants to live in the condition of half occupation -- but we will not do this. ..."
Feb 06, 2015 | The Guardian

1waldo1 7 Feb 2015 10:05

To stop the spreading of this increasingly dangerous conflict, there is a solution, that is in the interest of all affected:

The USA should butt out. It's that simple. This is a European 'problem' (instigated by and foisted upon by the Americans) and will be solved by Europe and Europe alone.

"The German chancellor said she wanted to secure peace in Europe with Russia and not against it." Wise words.

Paul Feeney Spiffey 7 Feb 2015 10:00

NATO is a One trick pony..and it's only one trick is War. NATO should have been dismantled when the old Soviet Union broke up. Instead, it's been taken over by the USA to aid its geopolitical S&P 500 agenda. If anyone should be in front of a War crime tribunal, it's not Lavrov but Obama for 3000 Pakistani people DRONED or Bush & Blair for one million Iraq's in the name of WMD's, if the 'Report' into it ever sees the light of day. International Diplomacy is the answer to Ukraine not more WAR....

Regnom 7 Feb 2015 09:29

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, speaking on Saturday at the Munich Security Conference, said that the actions of Washington and its allies have undermined the structure of European security. "The construction of European security, which is based on the UN Charter and the Helsinki principles, has long been undermined the actions of the US and its allies," - he said. Russian Foreign Minister also stressed that in any difficult situation, Washington is trying to accuse Moscow. "In every difficult situation our American colleagues are trying to" throw a switch" to Russia", - he said. As an example of his words Lavrov led to "revive the recent talks on a treaty on intermediate- and shorter-range missiles."

According to him, now there is a "culmination" of course conducted by the West to retain its dominance in the world: "We believe that there is a culmination held during the last quarter of a century the course of our Western colleagues to maintain any means of its dominance in world affairs, to capture geopolitical space in Europe."

Regnom 7 Feb 2015 09:21

Putin today:

"Moscow is not satisfied with the attempts to restrain the development of Russia and to preserve the unipolar world.

"War, thank God, is not happens. But there are really an attempt to keep our development by a variety of means, there are an attempt to "freeze" the world order led by one undisputed leader, who wants to stay as such. To stay in the belief that he can do all, while others can be something that only permuted by him and only in his best interest, "- said the head of state.

"Such a world order will never satisfied Russia," - he added. "If someone likes it, wants to live in the condition of half occupation -- but we will not do this. At the same time, we are not going to war with anyone and we are going to work with everyone"- said Putin.

snowdogchampion -> snowdogchampion 7 Feb 2015 09:08

here Merkel's speech (1hr) https://www.securityconference.de/en/media-library/video/single/statement-and-discussion-with-dr-angela-merkel/

and Lavrov (45min) https://www.securityconference.de/en/media-library/video/single/statement-and-discussion-with-sergey-lavrov-1/

and more

[Feb 07, 2015] Merkel downbeat as world awaits Putin's response to latest Ukraine peace plan by Julian Borger in Munich

Feb 07, 2015 | The Guardian


Nickel07 Tepluken 7 Feb 2015 23:15

of course it is a mafia state no different than the US...but you guys are the ones screaming your titties off about wonderful Yats is , you put the pusillanimous bastard in power...

centerline Tepluken 7 Feb 2015 23:14

international isolation

Explain international. I know the US believes it is the centre of the universe but the majority of people on earth do not agree. (I guess I should explain to a dumb as dogshit yank) A majority is over 50%.

centerline hdc hadeze 7 Feb 2015 23:10

Schwarzenegger and Stallone are pretty tough blokes too. I see those flowers were fund raising for the hard done by Israel so the could blast a few more UN schools.

John Smith 7 Feb 2015 23:07

The Russians should connect via land to Crimea, push 100km past THAT, and THEN have a buffer zone. That would allow a end to this. Anything less and the CIA will just ramp up Ukrainian arms for a year or two until they have the means to attack again.

Ukraine and it's quasi-fascist nationalists cannot be trusted, emboldened by American money, they REALLY cannot be trusted. I say that as a patriotic American.

Friend4you 7 Feb 2015 23:04

I agree with you John Smith , this war criminal John McCain is like Dracula , he lives on blood , this sick man used to travel to Egypt and meet the Muslim Brotherhood , supply them with money to destabilize Egypt . Wherever there are troubles you will find this blood thirsty man.

MaxBoson Laurence Johnson 7 Feb 2015 23:01

Motivated by your post, I checked the Web and found a Wiki piece on the Minsk Agreement. According a map there, the airport is smack dab on the red line designated as the "insurgent line of control". Since the Ukrainian forces were supposed to remain outside a 15km buffer zone, the question is why their attacks on the airport went unreported in Western media. This is a really bizarre situation; comments are now a better source of information the article being commented on.

John Smith 7 Feb 2015 22:56

I've had endless support pounding the New York Times every time it runs another lying anti-Putin, anti-Russia op-ed. We have the usual large block of idiot American Neocons who simply rise to any bait to throw hate at the supposed badguy Russian leader. But we also have endless numbers of smart people who watched this mess go down, and know better than to join the Neocon dopes in a let's-arm-Ukraine hatefest.

If one guy is the King of Neocon Idiots it's Sen John McCain. The old war criminal is a one man disaster on foreign policy. Thank the mythical Christ the asshole was defeated by the idiot Obama.

centerline Outfit17 7 Feb 2015 22:56

Democracy is good if it votes for the US. IF the majority vote against the US then that is dictatorship. (democracy is defined as pro US voting)

[Feb 07, 2015] Putin and Ukraine leader to hold phone talks after inconclusive end to summit

Notable quotes:
"... Moscow is not satisfied with the attempts to restrain the development of Russia and to preserve the unipolar world. ..."
"... there are really an attempt to keep our development by a variety of means, ..."
"... To stay in the belief that he can do all, while others can be something that only permuted by him and only in his best interest, "- said the head of state. ..."
"... If someone likes it, wants to live in the condition of half occupation -- but we will not do this. ..."
Feb 06, 2015 | The Guardian

1waldo1 7 Feb 2015 10:05

To stop the spreading of this increasingly dangerous conflict, there is a solution, that is in the interest of all affected:

The USA should butt out. It's that simple. This is a European 'problem' (instigated by and foisted upon by the Americans) and will be solved by Europe and Europe alone.

"The German chancellor said she wanted to secure peace in Europe with Russia and not against it." Wise words.

Paul Feeney Spiffey 7 Feb 2015 10:00

NATO is a One trick pony..and it's only one trick is War. NATO should have been dismantled when the old Soviet Union broke up. Instead, it's been taken over by the USA to aid its geopolitical S&P 500 agenda. If anyone should be in front of a War crime tribunal, it's not Lavrov but Obama for 3000 Pakistani people DRONED or Bush & Blair for one million Iraq's in the name of WMD's, if the 'Report' into it ever sees the light of day. International Diplomacy is the answer to Ukraine not more WAR....

Regnom 7 Feb 2015 09:29

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, speaking on Saturday at the Munich Security Conference, said that the actions of Washington and its allies have undermined the structure of European security. "The construction of European security, which is based on the UN Charter and the Helsinki principles, has long been undermined the actions of the US and its allies," - he said. Russian Foreign Minister also stressed that in any difficult situation, Washington is trying to accuse Moscow. "In every difficult situation our American colleagues are trying to" throw a switch" to Russia", - he said. As an example of his words Lavrov led to "revive the recent talks on a treaty on intermediate- and shorter-range missiles."

According to him, now there is a "culmination" of course conducted by the West to retain its dominance in the world: "We believe that there is a culmination held during the last quarter of a century the course of our Western colleagues to maintain any means of its dominance in world affairs, to capture geopolitical space in Europe."

Regnom 7 Feb 2015 09:21

Putin today:

"Moscow is not satisfied with the attempts to restrain the development of Russia and to preserve the unipolar world.

"War, thank God, is not happens. But there are really an attempt to keep our development by a variety of means, there are an attempt to "freeze" the world order led by one undisputed leader, who wants to stay as such. To stay in the belief that he can do all, while others can be something that only permuted by him and only in his best interest, "- said the head of state.

"Such a world order will never satisfied Russia," - he added. "If someone likes it, wants to live in the condition of half occupation -- but we will not do this. At the same time, we are not going to war with anyone and we are going to work with everyone"- said Putin.

snowdogchampion -> snowdogchampion 7 Feb 2015 09:08

here Merkel's speech (1hr) https://www.securityconference.de/en/media-library/video/single/statement-and-discussion-with-dr-angela-merkel/

and Lavrov (45min) https://www.securityconference.de/en/media-library/video/single/statement-and-discussion-with-sergey-lavrov-1/

and more

[Feb 07, 2015] Merkel downbeat as world awaits Putin's response to latest Ukraine peace plan by Julian Borger in Munich

Feb 07, 2015 | The Guardian


Nickel07 Tepluken 7 Feb 2015 23:15

of course it is a mafia state no different than the US...but you guys are the ones screaming your titties off about wonderful Yats is , you put the pusillanimous bastard in power...

centerline Tepluken 7 Feb 2015 23:14

international isolation

Explain international. I know the US believes it is the centre of the universe but the majority of people on earth do not agree. (I guess I should explain to a dumb as dogshit yank) A majority is over 50%.

centerline hdc hadeze 7 Feb 2015 23:10

Schwarzenegger and Stallone are pretty tough blokes too. I see those flowers were fund raising for the hard done by Israel so the could blast a few more UN schools.

John Smith 7 Feb 2015 23:07

The Russians should connect via land to Crimea, push 100km past THAT, and THEN have a buffer zone. That would allow a end to this. Anything less and the CIA will just ramp up Ukrainian arms for a year or two until they have the means to attack again.

Ukraine and it's quasi-fascist nationalists cannot be trusted, emboldened by American money, they REALLY cannot be trusted. I say that as a patriotic American.

Friend4you 7 Feb 2015 23:04

I agree with you John Smith , this war criminal John McCain is like Dracula , he lives on blood , this sick man used to travel to Egypt and meet the Muslim Brotherhood , supply them with money to destabilize Egypt . Wherever there are troubles you will find this blood thirsty man.

MaxBoson Laurence Johnson 7 Feb 2015 23:01

Motivated by your post, I checked the Web and found a Wiki piece on the Minsk Agreement. According a map there, the airport is smack dab on the red line designated as the "insurgent line of control". Since the Ukrainian forces were supposed to remain outside a 15km buffer zone, the question is why their attacks on the airport went unreported in Western media. This is a really bizarre situation; comments are now a better source of information the article being commented on.

John Smith 7 Feb 2015 22:56

I've had endless support pounding the New York Times every time it runs another lying anti-Putin, anti-Russia op-ed. We have the usual large block of idiot American Neocons who simply rise to any bait to throw hate at the supposed badguy Russian leader. But we also have endless numbers of smart people who watched this mess go down, and know better than to join the Neocon dopes in a let's-arm-Ukraine hatefest.

If one guy is the King of Neocon Idiots it's Sen John McCain. The old war criminal is a one man disaster on foreign policy. Thank the mythical Christ the asshole was defeated by the idiot Obama.

centerline Outfit17 7 Feb 2015 22:56

Democracy is good if it votes for the US. IF the majority vote against the US then that is dictatorship. (democracy is defined as pro US voting)

[Feb 06, 2015] Merkel and Hollande to present Ukraine peace plan to Putin

Those who are responsible for soaking Donbass in blood will not stop. They need to be stopped by force. Ukrainian citizens have become either consumable or brainwashed. And for Western Ukrainians, the core supported of Yatsenyuk & Poroshenko clan (forme junta that now is integrated into Porosheko government) the war is far from their territory. People are dying there in Debaltsevo and Uglegorsk, Donetsk and Luhansk, while the military and mercenaries are trying to prove their side of the story through shelling of infrastructure and killing citizens. Donbass meetings and referendums were a result EuroMaidan, and emergence of separatst are direct result of absurd actions of the new Ukrainian government, which turn their county into a death factory for the sake of enforcing on the country Western Ukranian brand of nationalism. Those who are living in peace and whose relatives are protected from conscption are demanding the continuation of the war the most loudly. They nurture and inspire her, feeding infernal demons. They created a diabolical request to victims. and they got them: woman, children, eldery, like in any civil war. But they now infected with their bloodthirsty bacillus and can't stop. So people like Yatsenyuk and Turchinov need to be stopped first, removed from this current position and sent to the Hague court before we can talk about peace. And let's don;t forget that the blood of victims of Odessa massacre in also on them. We are talking about repetion of civil war in Spain here with their 200 thousand victims. Looks like Europeans learned nothing from two world war and as soon the the generation the fought the war is in graved a new war is immediately started.
Notable quotes:
"... Seems the US is not happy at loosing year on year its percentage of global GDP and is aggressively trying to protect its satrapies or even enlarge them. ..."
theguardian.com

Laurence Johnson -> Agatha_appears 6 Feb 2015 15:51

There are two proxies in the West. Poroshenko is clearly the EU"s man in Ukraine, and Yatsenyuk is very clearly the US's man in Ukraine.

Whatever Merkel and Hollande come up with for a peace plan, you can guarantee that Yatsenyuk will derail it as soon as possible.

For Yats, only the supply of weapons, and many more billions of handouts and debt forgiveness will do. In the world for Yats, the war must go on.

hodgeey nino45 6 Feb 2015 15:27

I think most people who write here are compassionate; there are few people who have not been touched by tragedy and they learn to be both sympathetic and empathetic, but hesitate to show it.

Having worked with Russians in Russia I can tell you we are not very different.

nino45 ID1439675 6 Feb 2015 15:19

Thank you for your concern, maybe I said it in a wrong way.. my English is not that good. I wanted to express the feeling our elders here have when watching the news. Many people have friends and relatives there, so it is very hard on them. I just wanted to say that ordinary Russian people show compassion in many ways, well not writing comments here in English, but calling their relatives and sending them packages...


JCDavis -> ID1439675 6 Feb 2015 14:45

If the US has advisors and a CIA office in Kiev they are there by invitation

It's the other way around. The CIA invited the present government -- traitors all -- to join in their coup.

JCDavis -> Agatha_appears 6 Feb 2015 13:58

You are badly misreading the situation. Ukraine is pawn in a geopolitical struggle for world empire. It will be sacrificed in an instant if it suits the purposes of any of these people. Except Yats, the CIA's pick for the coup, a traitor who will be sacrificed in any case. Who could trust such a person?

Agatha_appears 6 Feb 2015 13:48

Let them negogiate peace. Merkel wants peace, Hollande needs peace, Putin desperately is seeking peace. Poroshenko is reasonable and negogiable. But imbecile Yatzenuk is non-negogiable. Let us pray that tkhe talks end with peaceful project.

JCDavis -> harryphilby 6 Feb 2015 13:23

The Yanks don't do peace.

This is true. Obama is Cheney's blackmailed puppet, and Cheney was the only neocon in Bush's criminal administration who actually wanted to fight Russia. He is quite mad, and he is the most powerful man in the world. Bad combination.

Euphobia1 6 Feb 2015 13:21

One problem is the history of the Ukraine which except for very short periods has always been part of Russia. Only an accident of fate made Ukraine a country and many of its citizens feel Russian and still want to be part of Russia.

Russia never invaded the Ukraine because it didn't have to as it was Russia. It would be like say East Anglia becoming a separate state in UK just because a politician who lived there thought it might be nice and then finding itself a sovereign state. Khrushchev did this for the Ukraine when he was the boss. Khrushchev never thought the Soviet Union would break up and Ukraine become a separate country for only the second time in it's history.

When the Soviet Union collapsed the USA treated it so badly. Instead of embracing it when it asked to join the EU Russia was rejected and the West has been encroaching on to it's borders ever since. No wonder Russia is fearful. The USA likes to fight wars in other people's countries. Good for business.

Russia is big powerful and proud country. Ukraine used to be the major part of it and many living there may still want to be part of it too. The West should wake up and start seeking solutions fast. War is not an answer.


Justthefactsman 6 Feb 2015 13:20

Anybody seen pictures that confirm that Russian Federation troops are in the Eastern Ukraine ?

With todays satellite technology it is almost possible to recognise a packet of cigarettes, how come we haven't seen any satellite images of these massive troop movements ?

What has happened about the inquiry that is supposed to be investigating the shooting down of the Malayan airliner? Why is the progress not being reported.?

Shit, it those crafty nasty Russians who are holding up the investigation. How? By asking to see the whole truth about the situation, and we wouldn't want to embarrass the coup inheritors in Kiev by revealing the truth, would we ?

TrueCopy -> Eric Hoffmann 6 Feb 2015 13:17

Dude there is no military solution to the mess. The most effective forces on the ground on the Ukraine regime side are Ukrainian "volunteer" paramilitary forces, who are coming from the western part of Ukraine, no one is talking giving them weapons, although Poland has been supporting them for a while. The Ukrainian army isn't going to fight any better no matter what they get. The best thing US can provide them is satellite intelligence, that is already doing. Russia isn't directly involved, but even if the invade Ukraine, there is not much we can do, it is better to just cut a deal and move on.

JCDavis 6 Feb 2015 13:14

So Hollande and Merkel and threatening Putin with early membership of Ukraine in NATO, completing Obama's new iron curtain earlier rather than later. Thus this stupid ploy will fail and Congress will throw gas on the fire (boneheads that they are) and Russia will move in with real troops and take all of southern Ukraine. This seems inevitable. Ukraine's goose was cooked when Ukrainian traitors conspired with the CIA Only the carving up is not complete.


zchabj6 6 Feb 2015 13:13

It is in the US strategic interest to have a war on Russia's border indefinitely as they already had a part in in Chechnya and Georgia. Georgia is now part of NATO so it worked quite well for the US despite the unnecessary loss of life, not that any nation cares anymore it seems.

It is not in the interest of Russia, Eurozone, EU or any European state .

Hence the Russian organized Minsk peace process and some belated EU help to make it happen while the US considers prolonging the war through weapons transfers as they have done and continue in Syria, another Iran/Russia ally.

Seems the US is not happy at loosing year on year its percentage of global GDP and is aggressively trying to protect its satrapies or even enlarge them.

[Feb 05, 2015] Merkel and Hollande to fly to Moscow in new effort to resolve Ukraine crisis by Shaun Walker in Kiev, Ian Traynor in Brussels, Dan Roberts in Washington and Alec Luhn in Moscow

Notable quotes:
"... is the most wasteful abuser of the world's scarce resources, ..."
"... I have been to Croatia and Serbia I was in Vukovar a few years ago. It was truly horrendous. Yugoslavia was destabilized by the US government and that no one can deny. The UN had no chance against heavily armed Serbs and Croats to stop the chaos. US are doing the same in Ukraine. Well it is not the USA people its the 0.00001% of the USA, ..."
"... The EU also has a similar problem, they need another country to leech off every few years to keep the EURO going. The moment countries start to drop out or the EU fails to find more victims to feed off, the EURO along with the EU will collapse. ..."
"... General - the BBC is state-funded. Do you refuse to believe a word it says? But why is funding from a state less likely to produce balanced journalism than funding from the five or six billionaires who own almost all the world's media? Especially when those billionaires effectively control the state apparatus anyway. ..."
"... I'm not condoning Russia's recent actions, but the American people and politicians seem incapable of "walking a mile in the other man's shoes". The USA has attempted to encircle Russia with armed NATO members - what do you think our reaction would be if Mexico and the Caribbean contained hostile troops and missiles aimed at us? I think we know the answer to that from the Cuban missile crisis. ..."
"... The fundamental question Is, what brought Ukraine into this mess? It is the expansion of NATO to the backyards of Russia. It happened at a time when Russia was weak and was still struggling to recover from the collapse of the Soviet system upon which their life and economy was built. And what was the goal of the US to expand NATO to the doorsteps of Russia? The US policy of domination of the world. It is this policy that poses the greatest danger to the security of the world since the fall of the bipolar world in the early 90s. The world, especially the Europe is facing a critical choice at this point of time in history. Europe has to set itself free of the US bondage or stay a mute spectator to the aggressive and intolerant policies of the conservative hard liners in the US, that would multiply the conflicts across the globe. Today, these hard liners in the US pose the greatest threat to the stability and overall growth of the people of this planet. ..."
"... Ethnic cleansing, though always popular with ultra-nationalists, is not the only way forward. Let the people decide. Not Kerry, not Merkel, not Putin, not Hollande, not Poroshenko not Yatzenyuk. Public votes. ..."
"... Absolutely. And when are we going to here the truth about that damn plane crash?? ..."
"... CNN is a joke, it should be called "CORRUPTED NEWS NETWORK". The sort of trash they report is what feeds all the Obama Drones, after all, they need their fuel from some where. ..."
"... The thing Rand missed was the "government" is run by the same 1% that she praises as the "job creators". ..."
"... They are playing the same "game" that sociopathic kings have played since the beginning of time. Why the "rest of us" allow ourselves to be governed by sociopaths remains a mystery. ..."
"... That would be heading 180 degrees in the wrong direction. What if Russia had taken a similar stand over the 'territorial integrity of Serbia' during the Kosovo affair? Aren't the situations analogous? ..."
"... I'm more and more disappointed with Merkel. ..."
"... It does however look as if the Hawks want to re-arm Ukraine so that they don't have to pay! This is on a par with shooting the debt collector when he comes to your house. ..."
"... I am sorry to say that the antics of western politicians are starting to resemble a virility contest and I would like this to cease forthwith as there are other far more serious problems to deal with. ..."
"... Georgia had announced their withdrawal from the 'Coalition of the Billing' in Afghanistan and the Bushies conveniently airlifted their entire combat contingent back home almost overnight. ..."
"... The US worked to stir up trouble for the democratically elected Ukrainian Government, under Yushchenko, despite the wishes of its EU Partners. At the time, US State Department Neo-Con Victoria Nuland was notoriously quoted as saying "F*ck the EU!" ..."
"... Educate yourself please. This information is readily available. ..."
Feb 05, 2015 | The Guardian


Soul_Side -> Dick Harrison 5 Feb 2015 20:16

Dick Harrison

Better than being a russian proxy state, look how advanced America is

Advanced? A nation that can't, or won't, provide adequate healthcare for its own citizens, has more than 40million living souls dependent on food stamps, that has the greatest income-disparity on the planet, is the most wasteful abuser of the world's scarce resources, trades the most weapons in the world, spends the most on war in the world, and imprisons the highest proportion of its citizens of all the countries in the world.

You could be forgiven for not wanting to buy into all that.

thomas142 -> ID9187603 5 Feb 2015 20:15

I have been to Croatia and Serbia I was in Vukovar a few years ago. It was truly horrendous. Yugoslavia was destabilized by the US government and that no one can deny. The UN had no chance against heavily armed Serbs and Croats to stop the chaos. US are doing the same in Ukraine. Well it is not the USA people its the 0.00001% of the USA,

AlienLifeForce Dugan222 5 Feb 2015 20:13

The problem is the US depends on war to keep the USD going just like they need the petrodollar, without them the USD will be like a drop of water in the desert.

The EU also has a similar problem, they need another country to leech off every few years to keep the EURO going. The moment countries start to drop out or the EU fails to find more victims to feed off, the EURO along with the EU will collapse.

Remember Germany relies very much on export, which is why the EU increasing pressure to expand. Merkel has not been looking her self recently, what with everything in Greece going wrong and now Ukraine has gone to plan, things don't look too good for the USD and the EURO.

Caroline Louise Generalken 5 Feb 2015 20:11

General - the BBC is state-funded. Do you refuse to believe a word it says? But why is funding from a state less likely to produce balanced journalism than funding from the five or six billionaires who own almost all the world's media? Especially when those billionaires effectively control the state apparatus anyway.

NigelRG 5 Feb 2015 20:09

I'm not condoning Russia's recent actions, but the American people and politicians seem incapable of "walking a mile in the other man's shoes". The USA has attempted to encircle Russia with armed NATO members - what do you think our reaction would be if Mexico and the Caribbean contained hostile troops and missiles aimed at us? I think we know the answer to that from the Cuban missile crisis.

nadodi 5 Feb 2015 20:07

The fundamental question Is, what brought Ukraine into this mess? It is the expansion of NATO to the backyards of Russia. It happened at a time when Russia was weak and was still struggling to recover from the collapse of the Soviet system upon which their life and economy was built. And what was the goal of the US to expand NATO to the doorsteps of Russia? The US policy of domination of the world. It is this policy that poses the greatest danger to the security of the world since the fall of the bipolar world in the early 90s. The world, especially the Europe is facing a critical choice at this point of time in history. Europe has to set itself free of the US bondage or stay a mute spectator to the aggressive and intolerant policies of the conservative hard liners in the US, that would multiply the conflicts across the globe. Today, these hard liners in the US pose the greatest threat to the stability and overall growth of the people of this planet.

desconocido Dick Harrison 5 Feb 2015 20:04

I think it's a question of first or second language and also of cultural identity. And also of course noticing that you are being shafted by west ukrainian nazis.

Davo3333 laSaya 5 Feb 2015 20:03

Because the land they are living on has been Russian land for centuries. So Crimea is Russian and should never have been part of Ukraine at all after the Soviet Union split up and Eastern and Southern Ukraine are also Russian but the first step for those regions would be to form new independent countries which could then decide whether they wished to rejoin Russia or remain independent. The Ukrainians live in West Ukraine and it is them who should move into their own areas and leave Eastern and Southern Ukraine alone. And another thing the population of Russia has been increasing in the last few years , not decreasing as you have stated.

Soul_Side laSaya 5 Feb 2015 20:01

laSaya said:

Why don't those Russian speaker just hop in a bus and journey to Russia. The Russian landmass is big enough to take those Russia lovers in.

Let me understand this point of view exactly, you think they should leave their homes, livelihoods, their aged, disabled and infirm relatives too weak to travel, their land, their places of birth, their local culture and local identity and just move somewhere else because their neighbour seeks to dominate them? Would you?

Ethnic cleansing, though always popular with ultra-nationalists, is not the only way forward. Let the people decide. Not Kerry, not Merkel, not Putin, not Hollande, not Poroshenko not Yatzenyuk. Public votes.

angdavies 5 Feb 2015 19:56

Ahhh.. I love the smell of proxy war in the morning!

Just let Putin save some face. Any Ukrainian who loves her country should back any peace talks up to the hilt, otherwise there'll be no Ukraine worth living in if the US starts to pump in the weapons. That will kick-off full scale Russian nationalist jihadism - a war that cannot be won.

AlienLifeForce -> Seriatim 5 Feb 2015 19:56

Absolutely. And when are we going to here the truth about that damn plane crash??

Strange you should ask, when I last looked, the US had decided that the findings of the investigation should remain classified. If there was any evidence to point the finger at Russia, don't you think they would have used it?

glit00 -> senya 5 Feb 2015 19:50

courtesy of google translate:

Commander (Chief) under the extraordinary period, including a state of martial law or a battle, in order to arrest a soldier who commits an act that falls within the elements of a crime related to disobedience, resistance or threats boss, violence, unauthorized leaving the fighting positions and designated areas of deployment units (units) in the areas of combat missions, shall have the right to apply measures of physical restraint without causing damage to the health of military and special funds sufficient to stop illegal actions.

In a battle commander (chief) can use weapons or give orders to subordinates of their application, unless otherwise impossible to stop the unauthorized retreat or other similar actions, while not causing the death of soldier.

If circumstances permit, the commander (chief) before use of physical effects, special tools or weapons should give voice warning, shot up or by other means notify the person against whom he may apply such measures

suzi 5 Feb 2015 19:38

suspicions that Putin is seeking to split Europe and America

He need hardly bother when the US itself is doing such a good job in that direction!

cycokan -> thomas142 5 Feb 2015 19:36

While I agree, that US foreign policy is often very, let's say, adventurous, I do not see them as idiots.

Trying to force Germany or France and most, if not all other European countries into an open war with Russia would be the end of NATO and the end of any American sphere of influence in Europe, because, I can assure you, at least the German populace would simply never join such an adventure.

AlienLifeForce Haynonnynonny 5 Feb 2015 19:40

CNN is a joke, it should be called "CORRUPTED NEWS NETWORK". The sort of trash they report is what feeds all the Obama Drones, after all, they need their fuel from some where.

AlienLifeForce -> MentalToo 5 Feb 2015 19:35

Putin thinks that by making Merkel and Hollande come to him, he is the greater man.

Putin did not make them come to him, Merkel and Hollande are going because if they have any sense, they will try and repair relations between Europe and Russia as well when an agreement can be made.

He has basically created this war because the people of Ukraine dared to reject him.

The US created the problems in Ukraine and if the people of Ukraine rejected Putin, why are large numbers of them heading towards the Russian boarder?

he has disregarded everything from international law, human rights, human lives, basic humanity including been the source to numerous war crimes and crimes towards humanity.

If anything this fits the description of the US more then Russia, especially when we look at the last 20 - 30 years. Russia has done everything that was agreed when the cold war ended and has since established good working relations world wide with out wars and conflicts.

He claims it was because Russia was threatened and needed protection. But Russia wasn't.

Again, Russia kept to the agreements made after the cold war ended, the US never did and has continued to move NATO ever closer to the Russian boarders. How does this represent good business relations from the west and why should Russia accept this to begin with.

All this was simply because his ego was hurt.


It is just as well Putin is not the sort of person you describe, because we would all be ash by now.

If anything is "poor", its you with your lack of understanding and ignorance.

KauaiJohnnie sasha19 5 Feb 2015 13:57

Of course if Putin did nothing there wouldn't be a conflict. But NATO was pushing on Russia's borders in violation of the agreements made with Gorbachev 30 years ago. What possible benefit is that to you and me?

Likewise, the deployment of Star Wars, which hasn't been shown to work but has cost billions (and billions) in Europe is hardly for protection against Iranian missiles.

This is just to demonstrate the strength of the USA military. And for what purpose? In "Atlas Shrugged" why did the government want to build a bigger bomb? To threaten anyone and everyone who wouldn't bow to the government wishes. The thing Rand missed was the "government" is run by the same 1% that she praises as the "job creators".

They are playing the same "game" that sociopathic kings have played since the beginning of time. Why the "rest of us" allow ourselves to be governed by sociopaths remains a mystery.

roundthings 5 Feb 2015 13:55

"We will make a new proposal to solve the conflict which will be based on Ukraine's territorial integrity."

That would be heading 180 degrees in the wrong direction. What if Russia had taken a similar stand over the 'territorial integrity of Serbia' during the Kosovo affair? Aren't the situations analogous?

Sure, Putin has been out of order. He deserves a smack. But the price of doing so is too high. These politician boneheads are dragging us into a war - a stupid war, an unnecessary war.

I'm more and more disappointed with Merkel. Her first strike was the panicked flight out of nuclear. No 2 was not recognizing that, yes the Greeks need to be made to lift their game, maybe take on a few of Schaeuble's tax collectors; but mindless squeezing of the bloke on the Athenian street is in no-one's interest. Could her failure to see sense on Ukraine be strike no 3?

Joe Bloggs 5 Feb 2015 13:55

Phew! I just like to say Not In My Name as it looks to me as if Hawks are milking the situation for all it is worth so that they can have a go at Russia. As far as I know the land in dispute is populated by Russian speakers who make up 95% of the population. There was also a referendum which had a landslide result showing that almost everyone wanted to be allied with Russia.

Of course the Hawks claimed that the result was invalid! IMHO it is really a problem caused by boundary disputes that came about when the USSR ceased to exist.

I propose the same solution that was used by the British Raj in India in 1947, what could be simpler? As to Russia compensating the Ukraine, allegedly Ukraine owes Russia an astronomical amount in unpaid gas bills. It does however look as if the Hawks want to re-arm Ukraine so that they don't have to pay! This is on a par with shooting the debt collector when he comes to your house.

I am sorry to say that the antics of western politicians are starting to resemble a virility contest and I would like this to cease forthwith as there are other far more serious problems to deal with.

Spaceguy1 -> One sasha19 5 Feb 2015 13:54

Naah, Zerohedge is predominantly a financial blog. Plenty of their articles are actually spot on. I use Zerohedge just as another source of information filtering out some of their conspiracies. Besides the article in Zerohedge just copied what the Russian news agency reported here; http://tass.ru/en/russia/775419

Canajin -> ID8787761 5 Feb 2015 13:53

They should also return Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Samoa, and Hawaii to their people. Not to mention Guam, Marianas, etc.

BradBenson -> Gene428 5 Feb 2015 13:52

Where do you get your information? We are the ones who have been constantly kicking the Russian Bear in the ass. Here are the facts.

In regard to Georgia

The Georgian Invasion of the neutral provinces of Ossetia and Abkhazia was completely orchestrated by the Bushies, while Putin was attending the previous Olympic Games in China.

Georgia had announced their withdrawal from the 'Coalition of the Billing' in Afghanistan and the Bushies conveniently airlifted their entire combat contingent back home almost overnight. They were then immediately deployed to attack the neutral provinces. The whole thing was an attempt to seize key Russian controlled oil pipelines from the Caucasus to the Black Sea.

Then, as now, Putin was forced to react to aggression on his borders. He flew home, issued an ultimatum and then sent in the Russian Army to clean out the Georgian Invaders, chasing them all the way back to Tbilisi until their CIA installed President begged the world for help. Not surprisingly, none came, but John McCain was able to proudly proclaim, "We are all Georgians today".

During the after battle clean-up, it was reported that there were a number of black soldiers among the dead Georgians. Those Georgians were most likely from Atlanta, Resaca and Augusta.

In regard to the Crimea

The presence of Russian ground forces and the only warm water ports for the Russian Navy made the Crimea a de facto Russian Territory. When the illegal coup d'état was pulled off in the Maidan, Putin and the Russian Military secured their bases on the Black Sea and in the Crimea.

Why should the neo-Nazis in Kiev, or their CIA backed puppet-masters have thought that the Russians would allow this territory to be illegally seized as was the rest of the Ukraine? When coup d'état's occur, borders can change unexpectedly. The people of the Crimea overwhelmingly support the presence of the Russians.

In regard to the coup d'état in Kiev

The US worked to stir up trouble for the democratically elected Ukrainian Government, under Yushchenko, despite the wishes of its EU Partners. At the time, US State Department Neo-Con Victoria Nuland was notoriously quoted as saying "F*ck the EU!"

However, during the rest of that famous 4 minute telephone call, Ms. Nuland was recorded as she outlined who the US wanted in the new Ukrainian Government--the one that would replace the existing government after it was overthrown. This happened despite the fact that Ukrainian Elections for a new President were already scheduled roughly two months hence. Then, against the wishes of its reluctant EU Partners, the US stage-managed the illegal coup d'état in Kiev using neo-Nazis as their vanguard in the streets.

Educate yourself please. This information is readily available.

ID5868758 -> ID8787761 5 Feb 2015 13:45

"Russia invaded Georgia." A perfect example of a western lie, that has been repeated over and over again, so many times that the lie has become the "truth".

[Feb 05, 2015] Merkel and Hollande to fly to Moscow in new effort to resolve Ukraine crisis by Shaun Walker in Kiev, Ian Traynor in Brussels, Dan Roberts in Washington and Alec Luhn in Moscow

Notable quotes:
"... is the most wasteful abuser of the world's scarce resources, ..."
"... I have been to Croatia and Serbia I was in Vukovar a few years ago. It was truly horrendous. Yugoslavia was destabilized by the US government and that no one can deny. The UN had no chance against heavily armed Serbs and Croats to stop the chaos. US are doing the same in Ukraine. Well it is not the USA people its the 0.00001% of the USA, ..."
"... The EU also has a similar problem, they need another country to leech off every few years to keep the EURO going. The moment countries start to drop out or the EU fails to find more victims to feed off, the EURO along with the EU will collapse. ..."
"... General - the BBC is state-funded. Do you refuse to believe a word it says? But why is funding from a state less likely to produce balanced journalism than funding from the five or six billionaires who own almost all the world's media? Especially when those billionaires effectively control the state apparatus anyway. ..."
"... I'm not condoning Russia's recent actions, but the American people and politicians seem incapable of "walking a mile in the other man's shoes". The USA has attempted to encircle Russia with armed NATO members - what do you think our reaction would be if Mexico and the Caribbean contained hostile troops and missiles aimed at us? I think we know the answer to that from the Cuban missile crisis. ..."
"... The fundamental question Is, what brought Ukraine into this mess? It is the expansion of NATO to the backyards of Russia. It happened at a time when Russia was weak and was still struggling to recover from the collapse of the Soviet system upon which their life and economy was built. And what was the goal of the US to expand NATO to the doorsteps of Russia? The US policy of domination of the world. It is this policy that poses the greatest danger to the security of the world since the fall of the bipolar world in the early 90s. The world, especially the Europe is facing a critical choice at this point of time in history. Europe has to set itself free of the US bondage or stay a mute spectator to the aggressive and intolerant policies of the conservative hard liners in the US, that would multiply the conflicts across the globe. Today, these hard liners in the US pose the greatest threat to the stability and overall growth of the people of this planet. ..."
"... Ethnic cleansing, though always popular with ultra-nationalists, is not the only way forward. Let the people decide. Not Kerry, not Merkel, not Putin, not Hollande, not Poroshenko not Yatzenyuk. Public votes. ..."
"... Absolutely. And when are we going to here the truth about that damn plane crash?? ..."
"... CNN is a joke, it should be called "CORRUPTED NEWS NETWORK". The sort of trash they report is what feeds all the Obama Drones, after all, they need their fuel from some where. ..."
"... The thing Rand missed was the "government" is run by the same 1% that she praises as the "job creators". ..."
"... They are playing the same "game" that sociopathic kings have played since the beginning of time. Why the "rest of us" allow ourselves to be governed by sociopaths remains a mystery. ..."
"... That would be heading 180 degrees in the wrong direction. What if Russia had taken a similar stand over the 'territorial integrity of Serbia' during the Kosovo affair? Aren't the situations analogous? ..."
"... I'm more and more disappointed with Merkel. ..."
"... It does however look as if the Hawks want to re-arm Ukraine so that they don't have to pay! This is on a par with shooting the debt collector when he comes to your house. ..."
"... I am sorry to say that the antics of western politicians are starting to resemble a virility contest and I would like this to cease forthwith as there are other far more serious problems to deal with. ..."
"... Georgia had announced their withdrawal from the 'Coalition of the Billing' in Afghanistan and the Bushies conveniently airlifted their entire combat contingent back home almost overnight. ..."
"... The US worked to stir up trouble for the democratically elected Ukrainian Government, under Yushchenko, despite the wishes of its EU Partners. At the time, US State Department Neo-Con Victoria Nuland was notoriously quoted as saying "F*ck the EU!" ..."
"... Educate yourself please. This information is readily available. ..."
Feb 05, 2015 | The Guardian


Soul_Side -> Dick Harrison 5 Feb 2015 20:16

Dick Harrison

Better than being a russian proxy state, look how advanced America is

Advanced? A nation that can't, or won't, provide adequate healthcare for its own citizens, has more than 40million living souls dependent on food stamps, that has the greatest income-disparity on the planet, is the most wasteful abuser of the world's scarce resources, trades the most weapons in the world, spends the most on war in the world, and imprisons the highest proportion of its citizens of all the countries in the world.

You could be forgiven for not wanting to buy into all that.

thomas142 -> ID9187603 5 Feb 2015 20:15

I have been to Croatia and Serbia I was in Vukovar a few years ago. It was truly horrendous. Yugoslavia was destabilized by the US government and that no one can deny. The UN had no chance against heavily armed Serbs and Croats to stop the chaos. US are doing the same in Ukraine. Well it is not the USA people its the 0.00001% of the USA,

AlienLifeForce Dugan222 5 Feb 2015 20:13

The problem is the US depends on war to keep the USD going just like they need the petrodollar, without them the USD will be like a drop of water in the desert.

The EU also has a similar problem, they need another country to leech off every few years to keep the EURO going. The moment countries start to drop out or the EU fails to find more victims to feed off, the EURO along with the EU will collapse.

Remember Germany relies very much on export, which is why the EU increasing pressure to expand. Merkel has not been looking her self recently, what with everything in Greece going wrong and now Ukraine has gone to plan, things don't look too good for the USD and the EURO.

Caroline Louise Generalken 5 Feb 2015 20:11

General - the BBC is state-funded. Do you refuse to believe a word it says? But why is funding from a state less likely to produce balanced journalism than funding from the five or six billionaires who own almost all the world's media? Especially when those billionaires effectively control the state apparatus anyway.

NigelRG 5 Feb 2015 20:09

I'm not condoning Russia's recent actions, but the American people and politicians seem incapable of "walking a mile in the other man's shoes". The USA has attempted to encircle Russia with armed NATO members - what do you think our reaction would be if Mexico and the Caribbean contained hostile troops and missiles aimed at us? I think we know the answer to that from the Cuban missile crisis.

nadodi 5 Feb 2015 20:07

The fundamental question Is, what brought Ukraine into this mess? It is the expansion of NATO to the backyards of Russia. It happened at a time when Russia was weak and was still struggling to recover from the collapse of the Soviet system upon which their life and economy was built. And what was the goal of the US to expand NATO to the doorsteps of Russia? The US policy of domination of the world. It is this policy that poses the greatest danger to the security of the world since the fall of the bipolar world in the early 90s. The world, especially the Europe is facing a critical choice at this point of time in history. Europe has to set itself free of the US bondage or stay a mute spectator to the aggressive and intolerant policies of the conservative hard liners in the US, that would multiply the conflicts across the globe. Today, these hard liners in the US pose the greatest threat to the stability and overall growth of the people of this planet.

desconocido Dick Harrison 5 Feb 2015 20:04

I think it's a question of first or second language and also of cultural identity. And also of course noticing that you are being shafted by west ukrainian nazis.

Davo3333 laSaya 5 Feb 2015 20:03

Because the land they are living on has been Russian land for centuries. So Crimea is Russian and should never have been part of Ukraine at all after the Soviet Union split up and Eastern and Southern Ukraine are also Russian but the first step for those regions would be to form new independent countries which could then decide whether they wished to rejoin Russia or remain independent. The Ukrainians live in West Ukraine and it is them who should move into their own areas and leave Eastern and Southern Ukraine alone. And another thing the population of Russia has been increasing in the last few years , not decreasing as you have stated.

Soul_Side laSaya 5 Feb 2015 20:01

laSaya said:

Why don't those Russian speaker just hop in a bus and journey to Russia. The Russian landmass is big enough to take those Russia lovers in.

Let me understand this point of view exactly, you think they should leave their homes, livelihoods, their aged, disabled and infirm relatives too weak to travel, their land, their places of birth, their local culture and local identity and just move somewhere else because their neighbour seeks to dominate them? Would you?

Ethnic cleansing, though always popular with ultra-nationalists, is not the only way forward. Let the people decide. Not Kerry, not Merkel, not Putin, not Hollande, not Poroshenko not Yatzenyuk. Public votes.

angdavies 5 Feb 2015 19:56

Ahhh.. I love the smell of proxy war in the morning!

Just let Putin save some face. Any Ukrainian who loves her country should back any peace talks up to the hilt, otherwise there'll be no Ukraine worth living in if the US starts to pump in the weapons. That will kick-off full scale Russian nationalist jihadism - a war that cannot be won.

AlienLifeForce -> Seriatim 5 Feb 2015 19:56

Absolutely. And when are we going to here the truth about that damn plane crash??

Strange you should ask, when I last looked, the US had decided that the findings of the investigation should remain classified. If there was any evidence to point the finger at Russia, don't you think they would have used it?

glit00 -> senya 5 Feb 2015 19:50

courtesy of google translate:

Commander (Chief) under the extraordinary period, including a state of martial law or a battle, in order to arrest a soldier who commits an act that falls within the elements of a crime related to disobedience, resistance or threats boss, violence, unauthorized leaving the fighting positions and designated areas of deployment units (units) in the areas of combat missions, shall have the right to apply measures of physical restraint without causing damage to the health of military and special funds sufficient to stop illegal actions.

In a battle commander (chief) can use weapons or give orders to subordinates of their application, unless otherwise impossible to stop the unauthorized retreat or other similar actions, while not causing the death of soldier.

If circumstances permit, the commander (chief) before use of physical effects, special tools or weapons should give voice warning, shot up or by other means notify the person against whom he may apply such measures

suzi 5 Feb 2015 19:38

suspicions that Putin is seeking to split Europe and America

He need hardly bother when the US itself is doing such a good job in that direction!

cycokan -> thomas142 5 Feb 2015 19:36

While I agree, that US foreign policy is often very, let's say, adventurous, I do not see them as idiots.

Trying to force Germany or France and most, if not all other European countries into an open war with Russia would be the end of NATO and the end of any American sphere of influence in Europe, because, I can assure you, at least the German populace would simply never join such an adventure.

AlienLifeForce Haynonnynonny 5 Feb 2015 19:40

CNN is a joke, it should be called "CORRUPTED NEWS NETWORK". The sort of trash they report is what feeds all the Obama Drones, after all, they need their fuel from some where.

AlienLifeForce -> MentalToo 5 Feb 2015 19:35

Putin thinks that by making Merkel and Hollande come to him, he is the greater man.

Putin did not make them come to him, Merkel and Hollande are going because if they have any sense, they will try and repair relations between Europe and Russia as well when an agreement can be made.

He has basically created this war because the people of Ukraine dared to reject him.

The US created the problems in Ukraine and if the people of Ukraine rejected Putin, why are large numbers of them heading towards the Russian boarder?

he has disregarded everything from international law, human rights, human lives, basic humanity including been the source to numerous war crimes and crimes towards humanity.

If anything this fits the description of the US more then Russia, especially when we look at the last 20 - 30 years. Russia has done everything that was agreed when the cold war ended and has since established good working relations world wide with out wars and conflicts.

He claims it was because Russia was threatened and needed protection. But Russia wasn't.

Again, Russia kept to the agreements made after the cold war ended, the US never did and has continued to move NATO ever closer to the Russian boarders. How does this represent good business relations from the west and why should Russia accept this to begin with.

All this was simply because his ego was hurt.


It is just as well Putin is not the sort of person you describe, because we would all be ash by now.

If anything is "poor", its you with your lack of understanding and ignorance.

KauaiJohnnie sasha19 5 Feb 2015 13:57

Of course if Putin did nothing there wouldn't be a conflict. But NATO was pushing on Russia's borders in violation of the agreements made with Gorbachev 30 years ago. What possible benefit is that to you and me?

Likewise, the deployment of Star Wars, which hasn't been shown to work but has cost billions (and billions) in Europe is hardly for protection against Iranian missiles.

This is just to demonstrate the strength of the USA military. And for what purpose? In "Atlas Shrugged" why did the government want to build a bigger bomb? To threaten anyone and everyone who wouldn't bow to the government wishes. The thing Rand missed was the "government" is run by the same 1% that she praises as the "job creators".

They are playing the same "game" that sociopathic kings have played since the beginning of time. Why the "rest of us" allow ourselves to be governed by sociopaths remains a mystery.

roundthings 5 Feb 2015 13:55

"We will make a new proposal to solve the conflict which will be based on Ukraine's territorial integrity."

That would be heading 180 degrees in the wrong direction. What if Russia had taken a similar stand over the 'territorial integrity of Serbia' during the Kosovo affair? Aren't the situations analogous?

Sure, Putin has been out of order. He deserves a smack. But the price of doing so is too high. These politician boneheads are dragging us into a war - a stupid war, an unnecessary war.

I'm more and more disappointed with Merkel. Her first strike was the panicked flight out of nuclear. No 2 was not recognizing that, yes the Greeks need to be made to lift their game, maybe take on a few of Schaeuble's tax collectors; but mindless squeezing of the bloke on the Athenian street is in no-one's interest. Could her failure to see sense on Ukraine be strike no 3?

Joe Bloggs 5 Feb 2015 13:55

Phew! I just like to say Not In My Name as it looks to me as if Hawks are milking the situation for all it is worth so that they can have a go at Russia. As far as I know the land in dispute is populated by Russian speakers who make up 95% of the population. There was also a referendum which had a landslide result showing that almost everyone wanted to be allied with Russia.

Of course the Hawks claimed that the result was invalid! IMHO it is really a problem caused by boundary disputes that came about when the USSR ceased to exist.

I propose the same solution that was used by the British Raj in India in 1947, what could be simpler? As to Russia compensating the Ukraine, allegedly Ukraine owes Russia an astronomical amount in unpaid gas bills. It does however look as if the Hawks want to re-arm Ukraine so that they don't have to pay! This is on a par with shooting the debt collector when he comes to your house.

I am sorry to say that the antics of western politicians are starting to resemble a virility contest and I would like this to cease forthwith as there are other far more serious problems to deal with.

Spaceguy1 -> One sasha19 5 Feb 2015 13:54

Naah, Zerohedge is predominantly a financial blog. Plenty of their articles are actually spot on. I use Zerohedge just as another source of information filtering out some of their conspiracies. Besides the article in Zerohedge just copied what the Russian news agency reported here; http://tass.ru/en/russia/775419

Canajin -> ID8787761 5 Feb 2015 13:53

They should also return Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Samoa, and Hawaii to their people. Not to mention Guam, Marianas, etc.

BradBenson -> Gene428 5 Feb 2015 13:52

Where do you get your information? We are the ones who have been constantly kicking the Russian Bear in the ass. Here are the facts.

In regard to Georgia

The Georgian Invasion of the neutral provinces of Ossetia and Abkhazia was completely orchestrated by the Bushies, while Putin was attending the previous Olympic Games in China.

Georgia had announced their withdrawal from the 'Coalition of the Billing' in Afghanistan and the Bushies conveniently airlifted their entire combat contingent back home almost overnight. They were then immediately deployed to attack the neutral provinces. The whole thing was an attempt to seize key Russian controlled oil pipelines from the Caucasus to the Black Sea.

Then, as now, Putin was forced to react to aggression on his borders. He flew home, issued an ultimatum and then sent in the Russian Army to clean out the Georgian Invaders, chasing them all the way back to Tbilisi until their CIA installed President begged the world for help. Not surprisingly, none came, but John McCain was able to proudly proclaim, "We are all Georgians today".

During the after battle clean-up, it was reported that there were a number of black soldiers among the dead Georgians. Those Georgians were most likely from Atlanta, Resaca and Augusta.

In regard to the Crimea

The presence of Russian ground forces and the only warm water ports for the Russian Navy made the Crimea a de facto Russian Territory. When the illegal coup d'état was pulled off in the Maidan, Putin and the Russian Military secured their bases on the Black Sea and in the Crimea.

Why should the neo-Nazis in Kiev, or their CIA backed puppet-masters have thought that the Russians would allow this territory to be illegally seized as was the rest of the Ukraine? When coup d'état's occur, borders can change unexpectedly. The people of the Crimea overwhelmingly support the presence of the Russians.

In regard to the coup d'état in Kiev

The US worked to stir up trouble for the democratically elected Ukrainian Government, under Yushchenko, despite the wishes of its EU Partners. At the time, US State Department Neo-Con Victoria Nuland was notoriously quoted as saying "F*ck the EU!"

However, during the rest of that famous 4 minute telephone call, Ms. Nuland was recorded as she outlined who the US wanted in the new Ukrainian Government--the one that would replace the existing government after it was overthrown. This happened despite the fact that Ukrainian Elections for a new President were already scheduled roughly two months hence. Then, against the wishes of its reluctant EU Partners, the US stage-managed the illegal coup d'état in Kiev using neo-Nazis as their vanguard in the streets.

Educate yourself please. This information is readily available.

ID5868758 -> ID8787761 5 Feb 2015 13:45

"Russia invaded Georgia." A perfect example of a western lie, that has been repeated over and over again, so many times that the lie has become the "truth".

[Feb 04, 2015] Donetsk hit by shells as violence intensifies in Ukraine – video

Note the headline " Donetsk hit by shells as violence intensifies in Ukraine". No one is responsible for shelling. It was just hit. Compare this with headlines about supposed "separatists" shellings.
theguardian.com

At least three people were killed in a series of shellings in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk on Wednesday that pro-Russian separatists said were Uragan missiles fired by Ukrainian forces. Earlier, the Ukrainian military said two of its soldiers had been killed and 18 wounded in fighting against pro-Russian separatists in the previous 24 hours

[Feb 04, 2015] Q A: Should US send lethal military assistance to Ukraine?

Feb 03, 2015 | The Guardian

AlienLifeForce -> Robert Looren de Jong 3 Feb 2015 22:29

Ukrainian Government: "No Russian Troops Are Fighting Against Us"
Posted on January 30, 2015 by Eric Zuesse.

Ukraine's top general is contradicting allegations by the Obama Administration and by his own Ukrainian Government, by saying that no Russian troops are fighting against the Ukrainian Government's forces in the formerly Ukrainian, but now separatist, area, where the Ukrainian civil war is being waged.

The Chief of Staff of Ukraine's Armed Forces, General Viktor Muzhenko, is saying, in that news-report, which is dated on Thursday January 29th, that the only Russian citizens who are fighting in the contested region, are residents in that region, or of Ukraine, and also some Russian citizens (and this does not deny that perhaps some of other countries' citizens are fighting there, inasmuch as American mercenaries have already been noted to have been participating on the Ukrainian Government's side), who "are members of illegal armed groups," meaning fighters who are not paid by any government, but instead are just "individual citizens" (as opposed to foreign-government-paid ones). General Muzhenko also says, emphatically, that the "Ukrainian army is not fighting with the regular units of the Russian army."

In other words: He is explicitly and clearly denying the very basis for the EU's sanctions against Russia, and for the U.S.'s sanctions against Russia: all of the sanctions against Russia are based on the falsehood that Ukraine is fighting against "the regular units of the Russian army" - i.e., against the Russian-Government-controlled-and-trained fighting forces.

The allegation to the effect that Ukraine is instead fighting against "regular units of the Russian army" is the allegation that Vladimir Putin's Russia has invaded Ukraine, and it is the entire basis for the economic sanctions that are in force against Russia.

Those sanctions should therefore be immediately removed, with apology, and with compensation being paid to all individuals who have been suffering them; and it is therefore incumbent upon the Russian Government to pursue, through all legally available channels, restitution, plus damages, against the perpetrators of that dangerous fraud - and the news reports have already made clear precisely whom those persons are, who have asserted, as public officials, what can only be considered to be major libel.

Otherwise, Ukraine's top general should be fired, for asserting what he has just asserted.

If what General Muzhenko says is true, then he is a hero for having risked his entire career by having gone public with this courageous statement. And, if what he says is false, then he has no place heading Ukraine's military.

http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2015/01/ukrainian-government-russian-troops-fighting-us.html

USCricketer 3 Feb 2015 22:06

While there is no doubt about covert US military aid already going to Ukraine it'll be another foolhardy step for Mr. Obama, or for the Republicans now in control, to overtly jump into the Ukrainian mess. One 'unintended consequence' of raising such stakes would be Russia coming out openly in support of Syria, Hamas and Hezbollah, which will be extremely bad news for Israel and the US Jewish American lobby.

Did somebody say that Obama and the Republicans are regretting the 'unintended consequences' in Iraq, in Afghanistan, in Libya, in Syria, in Yemen ??

And they now want to open another front in Ukraine?

Where will the money for this yet another foolhardy endeavor come from ?

Ah, No..I forgot the news that Mr. Obama is setting up a brand new dollar printing press to pay for his Ukraine adventure to-be..


greatwhitehunter -> EugeneGur 3 Feb 2015 21:14

the beating kiev took proir to the ceasefire was requested by poroshenko. The separatists targeted the azov battalion . poroshenko new he couldnt have a ceasefire until the asov battalion was taken down a peg or two. kiev is not a united force.

poroshenko is more likely to side with the east than the far right in the long term. The real civil war has yet to start.

PeraIlic -> Robert Looren de Jong 3 Feb 2015 20:13

i want russia to take their soldiers and weapons back from ukraine and stop invading a spovreign country quite simple. then war will be over meanwhile you advocate further bloodshed all the time with no regard for ukrainians

I think it's better Poroshenko to return his army to the west, where they came from, and miners from Donbas that he left alone to dig coal as before.


EugeneGur -> Robert Looren de Jong 3 Feb 2015 19:12

I hope Russia did equip them enough to kick the Ukrs out of Donbass for good. It is intolerable to watch day after day as unarmed people are deliberately targeted and killed and do nothing. Finally, the Russian government came to its senses realizing that without a decisive military victory by the Donbass fighters there won't be any peace in Ukraine.

[Feb 04, 2015] Q A: Should US send lethal military assistance to Ukraine?

Feb 03, 2015 | The Guardian

AlienLifeForce -> Robert Looren de Jong 3 Feb 2015 22:29

Ukrainian Government: "No Russian Troops Are Fighting Against Us"
Posted on January 30, 2015 by Eric Zuesse.

Ukraine's top general is contradicting allegations by the Obama Administration and by his own Ukrainian Government, by saying that no Russian troops are fighting against the Ukrainian Government's forces in the formerly Ukrainian, but now separatist, area, where the Ukrainian civil war is being waged.

The Chief of Staff of Ukraine's Armed Forces, General Viktor Muzhenko, is saying, in that news-report, which is dated on Thursday January 29th, that the only Russian citizens who are fighting in the contested region, are residents in that region, or of Ukraine, and also some Russian citizens (and this does not deny that perhaps some of other countries' citizens are fighting there, inasmuch as American mercenaries have already been noted to have been participating on the Ukrainian Government's side), who "are members of illegal armed groups," meaning fighters who are not paid by any government, but instead are just "individual citizens" (as opposed to foreign-government-paid ones). General Muzhenko also says, emphatically, that the "Ukrainian army is not fighting with the regular units of the Russian army."

In other words: He is explicitly and clearly denying the very basis for the EU's sanctions against Russia, and for the U.S.'s sanctions against Russia: all of the sanctions against Russia are based on the falsehood that Ukraine is fighting against "the regular units of the Russian army" - i.e., against the Russian-Government-controlled-and-trained fighting forces.

The allegation to the effect that Ukraine is instead fighting against "regular units of the Russian army" is the allegation that Vladimir Putin's Russia has invaded Ukraine, and it is the entire basis for the economic sanctions that are in force against Russia.

Those sanctions should therefore be immediately removed, with apology, and with compensation being paid to all individuals who have been suffering them; and it is therefore incumbent upon the Russian Government to pursue, through all legally available channels, restitution, plus damages, against the perpetrators of that dangerous fraud - and the news reports have already made clear precisely whom those persons are, who have asserted, as public officials, what can only be considered to be major libel.

Otherwise, Ukraine's top general should be fired, for asserting what he has just asserted.

If what General Muzhenko says is true, then he is a hero for having risked his entire career by having gone public with this courageous statement. And, if what he says is false, then he has no place heading Ukraine's military.

http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2015/01/ukrainian-government-russian-troops-fighting-us.html

USCricketer 3 Feb 2015 22:06

While there is no doubt about covert US military aid already going to Ukraine it'll be another foolhardy step for Mr. Obama, or for the Republicans now in control, to overtly jump into the Ukrainian mess. One 'unintended consequence' of raising such stakes would be Russia coming out openly in support of Syria, Hamas and Hezbollah, which will be extremely bad news for Israel and the US Jewish American lobby.

Did somebody say that Obama and the Republicans are regretting the 'unintended consequences' in Iraq, in Afghanistan, in Libya, in Syria, in Yemen ??

And they now want to open another front in Ukraine?

Where will the money for this yet another foolhardy endeavor come from ?

Ah, No..I forgot the news that Mr. Obama is setting up a brand new dollar printing press to pay for his Ukraine adventure to-be..


greatwhitehunter -> EugeneGur 3 Feb 2015 21:14

the beating kiev took proir to the ceasefire was requested by poroshenko. The separatists targeted the azov battalion . poroshenko new he couldnt have a ceasefire until the asov battalion was taken down a peg or two. kiev is not a united force.

poroshenko is more likely to side with the east than the far right in the long term. The real civil war has yet to start.

PeraIlic -> Robert Looren de Jong 3 Feb 2015 20:13

i want russia to take their soldiers and weapons back from ukraine and stop invading a spovreign country quite simple. then war will be over meanwhile you advocate further bloodshed all the time with no regard for ukrainians

I think it's better Poroshenko to return his army to the west, where they came from, and miners from Donbas that he left alone to dig coal as before.


EugeneGur -> Robert Looren de Jong 3 Feb 2015 19:12

I hope Russia did equip them enough to kick the Ukrs out of Donbass for good. It is intolerable to watch day after day as unarmed people are deliberately targeted and killed and do nothing. Finally, the Russian government came to its senses realizing that without a decisive military victory by the Donbass fighters there won't be any peace in Ukraine.

[Feb 02, 2015] Ukraine crisis: Kiev hopes talks will go ahead despite renewed violence

So after killing several hundred thousand Iraqis the USA want to kill several hundred thousand Ukrainians to further imperial ambitions of neocon elite... Now we have the situation that that reminds me Spanish civil war.
Notable quotes:
"... it would take far more than these two and a few russians to instigate a civil war in Ukraine. ..."
Feb 01, 2015 | The Guardian

The recent upsurge in violence has alarmed Ukraine's western allies, with US secretary of state John Kerry announcing plans to express his support for the nation during talks in Kiev on Thursday with Poroshenko and prime minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.


fedupwiththeliesalso -> maninBATHTUB 2 Feb 2015 05:48

The situation is far more complex than that.

it would take far more than these two and a few russians to instigate a civil war in Ukraine. The Ukrainian government were never attacked by anyone in the east or russia. But it attacked Easterners. To say this is a Russians instigated situation is untrue.

IvanMills 1 Feb 2015 22:48

Kiev launched a civil war against its citizens in the east. Kiev's military is bombing cities killing civilians and destroying property.

What do the US and the EU have to do with another country's internal conflict.


AlienLifeForce Oskar Jaeger 1 Feb 2015 19:58

Yes, its rediculous that thousands of civilians have been killed while the EU & US turn their backs and blame Russia for an invasion they cant even prove. Must be hard for the US to explain with all those drones they have?


AlienLifeForce Oskar Jaeger 1 Feb 2015 19:29

There is no doubt that the events that have taken place in Ukraine have been very interesting, and like I have pointed out before, I have always been curious as to why there has not been any real news coverage on the ground from the western media since the government was overthrown. Because of this you end up looking for further information through the web, like most sensible people do. I can honestly say I have followed this story from the start and like I said, when you have interest in something, you want to know everything about it. What has surprised me the most, is that I have not been able to find any evidence to support the Russian invasion. Instaed I have found out about Tech Camp, Black Water and all the other reasons you can think of that support the interest of the EU & US, very interesting.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2576490/Are-Blackwater-active-Ukraine-Videos-spark-talk-U-S-mercenary-outfit-deployed-Donetsk.html

AlienLifeForce

The Chief of Staff of Ukraine's Armed Forces, General Viktor Muzhenko, is saying, in that news-report, which is dated on Thursday January 29th, that the only Russian citizens who are fighting in the contested region, are residents in that region, or of Ukraine, and also some Russian citizens (and this does not deny that perhaps some of other countries' citizens are fighting there, inasmuch as American mercenaries have already been noted to have been participating on the Ukrainian Government's side), who "are members of illegal armed groups," meaning fighters who are not paid by any government, but instead are just "individual citizens" (as opposed to foreign-government-paid ones). General Muzhenko also says, emphatically, that the "Ukrainian army is not fighting with the regular units of the Russian army."

In other words: He is explicitly and clearly denying the very basis for the EU's sanctions against Russia, and for the U.S.'s sanctions against Russia: all of the sanctions against Russia are based on the falsehood that Ukraine is fighting against "the regular units of the Russian army" - i.e., against the Russian-Government-controlled-and-trained fighting forces.

The allegation to the effect that Ukraine is instead fighting against "regular units of the Russian army" is the allegation that Vladimir Putin's Russia has invaded Ukraine, and it is the entire basis for the economic sanctions that are in force against Russia.

Those sanctions should therefore be immediately removed, with apology, and with compensation being paid to all individuals who have been suffering them; and it is therefore incumbent upon the Russian Government to pursue, through all legally available channels, restitution, plus damages, against the perpetrators of that dangerous fraud - and the news reports have already made clear precisely whom those persons are, who have asserted, as public officials, what can only be considered to be major libel.

AlienLifeForce

Ukranian general admitted junta targeted purposely civilians and perfirmed genocide just to get Russia involved in conflict but failed.

http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2015/01/ukrainian-government-russian-troops-fighting-us.html


fedupwiththeliesalso -> jezzam 1 Feb 2015 17:52

"democracy, justice, freedom of speech, increased happiness, health, prosperity"

What does America know of any of those things? They only apply if you can afford it.

Joao Silva 1 Feb 2015 17:19

The result that came out the ballots in Greece are a signal to the other opposition leaders in Europe. A unanimous decision to sanction Russia over Ukraine turned out to change the regime in Greece. Unanimous is stupidity. Spain is going to be the next. I have no bets on the third, forth ones.

So it seems that to confront EU's hardness on Russia can change the mind of voters across Europe. after all, it is only a USA/UK/France/Germany/Poland, Ukraine(Big 6) war. The others countries will get nothing but losses on their fragile economies. But they had been, until Greece's voters changed it, being like sheep heading to the slaughterhouse following the command of the Big 6.

LinkMeyer maninBATHTUB 1 Feb 2015 15:57

"
The best weapon against a psychopath is to let them destroy themselves."
How long will it take you?

GardenShedFever Metronome151 1 Feb 2015 15:46

I have read this unsupported accusation against Russia many times, yet when the facts on the ground are ascertained, it is Kiev that sent its tanks against its own people in Donetsk and Luhansk. Those East Ukrainians, as Crimeans before them, rejected Kiev's violence, violence fomented in Lviv, Kiev, and further afield, Brussels and Washington. They have looked to Russia for help once the shells began to rain down on them. Russia's response has been less than requested, but has halted at least some of Kiev's murderous rampage. At the least, it has restricted Kiev's air support for its mercenerary brigades. For that, the people of East Ukraine will be forever thankful.

[Feb 02, 2015] Ukraine crisis: Kiev hopes talks will go ahead despite renewed violence

So after killing several hundred thousand Iraqis the USA want to kill several hundred thousand Ukrainians to further imperial ambitions of neocon elite... Now we have the situation that that reminds me Spanish civil war.
Notable quotes:
"... it would take far more than these two and a few russians to instigate a civil war in Ukraine. ..."
Feb 01, 2015 | The Guardian

The recent upsurge in violence has alarmed Ukraine's western allies, with US secretary of state John Kerry announcing plans to express his support for the nation during talks in Kiev on Thursday with Poroshenko and prime minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.


fedupwiththeliesalso -> maninBATHTUB 2 Feb 2015 05:48

The situation is far more complex than that.

it would take far more than these two and a few russians to instigate a civil war in Ukraine. The Ukrainian government were never attacked by anyone in the east or russia. But it attacked Easterners. To say this is a Russians instigated situation is untrue.

IvanMills 1 Feb 2015 22:48

Kiev launched a civil war against its citizens in the east. Kiev's military is bombing cities killing civilians and destroying property.

What do the US and the EU have to do with another country's internal conflict.


AlienLifeForce Oskar Jaeger 1 Feb 2015 19:58

Yes, its rediculous that thousands of civilians have been killed while the EU & US turn their backs and blame Russia for an invasion they cant even prove. Must be hard for the US to explain with all those drones they have?


AlienLifeForce Oskar Jaeger 1 Feb 2015 19:29

There is no doubt that the events that have taken place in Ukraine have been very interesting, and like I have pointed out before, I have always been curious as to why there has not been any real news coverage on the ground from the western media since the government was overthrown. Because of this you end up looking for further information through the web, like most sensible people do. I can honestly say I have followed this story from the start and like I said, when you have interest in something, you want to know everything about it. What has surprised me the most, is that I have not been able to find any evidence to support the Russian invasion. Instaed I have found out about Tech Camp, Black Water and all the other reasons you can think of that support the interest of the EU & US, very interesting.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2576490/Are-Blackwater-active-Ukraine-Videos-spark-talk-U-S-mercenary-outfit-deployed-Donetsk.html

AlienLifeForce

The Chief of Staff of Ukraine's Armed Forces, General Viktor Muzhenko, is saying, in that news-report, which is dated on Thursday January 29th, that the only Russian citizens who are fighting in the contested region, are residents in that region, or of Ukraine, and also some Russian citizens (and this does not deny that perhaps some of other countries' citizens are fighting there, inasmuch as American mercenaries have already been noted to have been participating on the Ukrainian Government's side), who "are members of illegal armed groups," meaning fighters who are not paid by any government, but instead are just "individual citizens" (as opposed to foreign-government-paid ones). General Muzhenko also says, emphatically, that the "Ukrainian army is not fighting with the regular units of the Russian army."

In other words: He is explicitly and clearly denying the very basis for the EU's sanctions against Russia, and for the U.S.'s sanctions against Russia: all of the sanctions against Russia are based on the falsehood that Ukraine is fighting against "the regular units of the Russian army" - i.e., against the Russian-Government-controlled-and-trained fighting forces.

The allegation to the effect that Ukraine is instead fighting against "regular units of the Russian army" is the allegation that Vladimir Putin's Russia has invaded Ukraine, and it is the entire basis for the economic sanctions that are in force against Russia.

Those sanctions should therefore be immediately removed, with apology, and with compensation being paid to all individuals who have been suffering them; and it is therefore incumbent upon the Russian Government to pursue, through all legally available channels, restitution, plus damages, against the perpetrators of that dangerous fraud - and the news reports have already made clear precisely whom those persons are, who have asserted, as public officials, what can only be considered to be major libel.

AlienLifeForce

Ukranian general admitted junta targeted purposely civilians and perfirmed genocide just to get Russia involved in conflict but failed.

http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2015/01/ukrainian-government-russian-troops-fighting-us.html


fedupwiththeliesalso -> jezzam 1 Feb 2015 17:52

"democracy, justice, freedom of speech, increased happiness, health, prosperity"

What does America know of any of those things? They only apply if you can afford it.

Joao Silva 1 Feb 2015 17:19

The result that came out the ballots in Greece are a signal to the other opposition leaders in Europe. A unanimous decision to sanction Russia over Ukraine turned out to change the regime in Greece. Unanimous is stupidity. Spain is going to be the next. I have no bets on the third, forth ones.

So it seems that to confront EU's hardness on Russia can change the mind of voters across Europe. after all, it is only a USA/UK/France/Germany/Poland, Ukraine(Big 6) war. The others countries will get nothing but losses on their fragile economies. But they had been, until Greece's voters changed it, being like sheep heading to the slaughterhouse following the command of the Big 6.

LinkMeyer maninBATHTUB 1 Feb 2015 15:57

"
The best weapon against a psychopath is to let them destroy themselves."
How long will it take you?

GardenShedFever Metronome151 1 Feb 2015 15:46

I have read this unsupported accusation against Russia many times, yet when the facts on the ground are ascertained, it is Kiev that sent its tanks against its own people in Donetsk and Luhansk. Those East Ukrainians, as Crimeans before them, rejected Kiev's violence, violence fomented in Lviv, Kiev, and further afield, Brussels and Washington. They have looked to Russia for help once the shells began to rain down on them. Russia's response has been less than requested, but has halted at least some of Kiev's murderous rampage. At the least, it has restricted Kiev's air support for its mercenerary brigades. For that, the people of East Ukraine will be forever thankful.

[Feb 01, 2015] US considers providing arms to Ukraine as rebels step up attacks, says report

It does not make much sense to read or quote that article: a typical propaganda peace... From comments:
"The Guardian, not alone among the western MSM, that has been incredibly biased in reporting on what is happening in Ukraine. It would be reasonable to expect less blatantly biased reporting from The Guardian, and it amazes me that day after day it faithfully repeats the propaganda from the US etal as though it is fact-based news ... in many cases, especially, for example, when reporting on the shelling of towns (e.g. Mariupol) it reports shelling by the Kiev 'government' as being shelling by the Novorussians - why do this?
and
"Typical propaganda comment. In your opinion peace will not be reach until Russia bends over to Uncle Sam and say yes sir no sir three bags full sir? I don't think it's in their nature. Whole world knows current PM of Ukraine is appointed by US foreign office. Do a bit of research it helps with facts"
Notable quotes:
"... Doesn't he realize that the only time when Poroshenko talks about cease fire is when he is under pressure from the rebels. ..."
"... Couldn't Obama mind his own business for once? ..."
"... Ukraine is a failed state. It has ceased to exist as anything but the frontline for US geopolitical machinations. ..."
"... I am sure they don't want to be enslaved to the CIA either. ..."
Feb 01, 2015 | The Guardian

TG Asch, everybody's closet neoliberal and neocon, blah-piece today is simply warmongering dressed-up as journalism - equating Putin to Milosevic simply illustrates his lack of current or historical knowledge and understanding. Asch was and is in fact a propagandist, not a journalist.

There is a wealth of much more accurate and nuanced information on what has and is happening in the Ukraine available in the public domain. It seems that the people working for The Guardian (and the BBC) are choosing to ignore this and stick to the White House's and Downing Street's disinformation handouts" ...

For The Guardian to be posting pieces advocating more war - as Asch does - is simply irresponsible in the current circumstances, especially when it is impossible to find any alternate views being given any space at all - not equal space, any space - by The Guardian. Balance, Fairness, Judgment, Independence - these all seem to have gone out the window when it comes to the Ukraine and The Guardian has placed itself on the side of the warmongers.

Why is the Guardian doing this?

Selected Skeptical Comments

vr13vr 1 Feb 2015 22:29

Looks like Obama's goal is to maintain the conflict there indefinitely. Doesn't he realize that the only time when Poroshenko talks about cease fire is when he is under pressure from the rebels. If you give him more weapons, and if you embolden him, he will not be talking about truce.

This conflict will just go on, and that's what Obama seems to prefer.

edwardrice peacefulmilitant 1 Feb 2015 22:29

Putin has ''pushed'' Obama? Couldn't Obama mind his own business for once?

What has a deeply corrupt bankrupt dysfunctional country 1000s of miles from the US got to do with the Obama? Why should the US tax payer fund another foreign war?

What right does the US have to trample over the heads of 500 million Europeans and escalate a civil war in Europe!

scruffythejanitor 1 Feb 2015 22:28

I really don't see much American enthusiasm to be involved in Ukraine- it seems more like they can't extricate themselves from it. Nations seem to behave like nations. The US is committed to supporting Europe and condemning russian aggression in annexing Ukraine, as any large country would when one country violates another's sovereignty. You don't get to violate another country's borders, officially.

Russia persistently cries foul whenever the US publicly interferes with another nation's affairs, such as in Iraq, the presumption being that each country does not clandestinely interfere in it's own way. The crocodile tears over US violations of sovereignty looked a lot more convincing ten years ago than they do today.

ID1011951 1 Feb 2015 22:28

The Guardian, not alone among the western MSM, that has been incredibly biased in reporting on what is happening in Ukraine. It would be reasonable to expect less blatantly biased reporting from The Guardian, and it amazes me that day after day it faithfully repeats the propaganda from the US etal as though it is fact-based news ... in many cases, especially, for example, when reporting on the shelling of towns (e.g. Mariupol) it reports shelling by the Kiev 'government' as being shelling by the Novorussians - why do this?

TG Asch, everybody's closet neoliberal and neocon, blah-piece today is simply warmongering dressed-up as journalism - equating Putin to Milosevic simply illustrates his lack of current or historical knowledge and understanding. Asch was and is in fact a propagandist, not a journalist.

There is a wealth of much more accurate and nuanced information on what has and is happening in the Ukraine available in the public domain. It seems that the people working for The Guardian (and the BBC) are choosing to ignore this and stick to the White House's and Downing Street's disinformation handouts ...

For The Guardian to be posting pieces advocating more war - as Asch does - is simply irresponsible in the current circumstances, especially when it is impossible to find any alternate views being given any space at all - not equal space, any space - by The Guardian. Balance, Fairness, Judgment, Independence - these all seem to have gone out the window when it comes to the Ukraine and The Guardian has placed itself on the side of the warmongers.

Why is the Guardian doing this?

Dugan222 1 Feb 2015 22:07

Great....my disgust is beyond words. In all the peace talks, there were not a single American representative present. When comes to arming Ukraine, America is already taking the lead and making unilateral decisions even without the EU consent. Yeah, leading from behind when comes to peace. Taking a leadership role when comes to starting a war. America is greatest. I guess Russia will do the same openly and officially. Ukrainian crisis will become a proxy war for the West to bring back the Cold War.

Both the Russian backed separatists and American backed Ukrainians will murder and kill each others...until a demarcation line is drawn somewhere in Kiev. Wondering who would build the Kiev Wall first. The East, the Russian side, or the West, American side?? Ha...the Kiev Wall.... Is not America's problem since the conflict is thousands of miles away.

BTW, Ukraine has been received arms through various Nato members already. And there are reports of US mercenaries on the ground as well. Obviously, the Obama administration wants to make it official. For Putin, he does not really need to make it official though.

GardenShedFever -> David Dalton Lytle Jr. 1 Feb 2015 22:06

I'm English, but I think you are American.

And film of weapons caches captured from the cyborgs that include brand new, advanced weapons not issued to the Ukraine military (but, of course, the cyborgs are Kolomoisky's merceneries, supported by McCain et al) demonstrates the US finger in the Kiev pie.

GardenShedFever HHeLiBe 1 Feb 2015 22:02

Poroshenko was "elected" on the lowest turnout in Ukraine's history, with vast swathes of Ukraine boycotting the election, opposition parties banned, opposition politicians abused, assaulted, and disappeared.

There is no democracy in Ukraine. Its sovereignty disappeared with the US sponsored coup that toppled Yanukovych.

HollyOldDog HHeLiBe 1 Feb 2015 22:00

Since when? The West Ukraine army never put into practice the last MINSK Agreement. The shelling on East Ukraine never stopped.

GardenShedFever HHeLiBe 1 Feb 2015 21:57

Good enough to know that, with a boycott of elections in the south and east of Ukraine, there is not even a semblance of democracy there, as the people are neither represented in Kiev, nor do they want to.

Ukraine is a failed state. It has ceased to exist as anything but the frontline for US geopolitical machinations.

When the EU made a last ditch agreement with Yanukovych, to introduce early elections, what was the US response?

"Fuck the EU" said Victoria Nuland. That tells you all you need to know.


MediaWatchDog ID6674371 1 Feb 2015 21:56

Typical propaganda comment. In your opinion peace will not be reach until Russia bends over to Uncle Sam and say yes sir no sir three bags full sir? I don't think it's in their nature. Whole world knows current PM of Ukraine is appointed by US forigen office. Do a bit of research it helps with facts

Parangaricurimicuaro 1 Feb 2015 21:54

This new development only shows how badly Kiev is losing.

MediaWatchDog 1 Feb 2015 21:51

German Chancellor Angela Markels mobile phone is/was tapped by US president and her plan for peaceful and democratic settlement of Ukraine was fu**ed by US forigen deputy secretary Victoria Nuland.

Now CIA is in full command arming extremists, again!

MediaWatchDog -> Kavi Mazumdar 1 Feb 2015 21:45

Scotland style referendum? Scaremongering and ganging up on voters by big businesses and Westminster politicians? F that it will hard to keep Victoria Nuland types out, CIA is way too powerful than Westminster. Why not have a proper referendum, not like Crimea or Scotland!

MediaWatchDog -> randomguyfromoz 1 Feb 2015 21:42

Ethic Russians don't want to be part of Russia in your opinion? You are probably right, I am sure they don't want to be enslaved to the CIA either.

Zwoman48 1 Feb 2015 21:41

The U.S. instigated and supported the coup in Ukraine and is thinking of arming the fascists. All you need to know, everyone.

MediaWatchDog 1 Feb 2015 21:40

Fact 1. Victoria Nuland topple old regime and appointed Yats as nations PM, fuc**d EU plan of democratic transional government.

Fact 2. Since then head of CIA and other top level US officials have actively involved on Ukraine.

Fact 3. Now they are considering providing weapons.

Thanks to the US Empire for successfully opening up new cold war at European borders.

Hoon -> Ai Ooi 1 Feb 2015 21:34

Someone has to pay for this. The UK had just finish paying USA for their debts from the 1st World War! What about the 2nd? And now Ukrain! & Middle East. This will bankrupt the EU for sure!

Zwoman48 HHeLiBe 1 Feb 2015 21:44

Bollocks! That's the absolute lie the western media wants you to swallow. Oh. I see you HAVE.

HHeLiBe -> Kavi Mazumdar 1 Feb 2015 21:32

How about Pakistan invades Kashmir with special forces, causes so much disturbance all the Indians flee for their lives, and then forces a referendum on those who remain?

TommyGuardianReader , Feb 1, 2015 21:31

Given that comments have prematurely been closed on yesterday's Guardian "Comment is Free" article, in which a salesman masquerading as a journalist spins the line that "sometimes only guns can stop guns",

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/feb/01/putin-stopped-ukraine-military-support-russian-propaganda

It's worth reflecting that guns can stop gunners and civilians (see Martin Place), but they cannot stop guns. Whether it's Tokyo or Dallas, Texas, guns, munitions and drones are big money.

During the First World War the British government continued to pay Krupp's of Essen royalties for some of their gun patents. It was probably insider traders linked to Krupp's of Essen who dobbed in Sir Roger Casement's naive attempts to get German arms to Irish independence fighters in order to try to avert the long-planned Imperial utility World War.

He was a bit like the David Kelly of his day, in that he got in the way of the machine.

By the way, on an unrelated matter, isn't all this noise about Russia and Putin distracting us from the Chilcott Inquiry, and the roles of Bush, Cheney and Putin in the Coalition Of The Willing?

As Don Henderson wrote in his song "Was War For Those Who Want It":

"The men who build the planes and make the tanks
Are neutral and get payment in Swiss francs
While the rich on both sides prosper the poor will kill the poor
Was war for those who want it, they would want an end to war."


Maria Meri 1 Feb 2015 21:30

Can anybody name one year after the 2nd WW whn the US hadn't been policing somewhr - war indeed seems to form it's economic base (commies said this ages ago)

GardenShedFever 1 Feb 2015 21:21

Considering the weapons caches captured by the rebels after dislodging Ukraine's "cyborgs" from Donetsk airport, the US has been arming Kiev's forces for some time. Advanced US weapons are not routine equipment for the Ukraine military, are they?
It is no surprise the USA is clamouring to escalate this civil war. They began it, and they expected a near bloodless coup, like the Orange Revolution. Their problem this time, however, was they backed and funded far-right Ukrainian Nationalists who are despised in the South and East, and although the Maidan protests had sympathy, the commandeering of those protests by Right Sektor and Svoboda has alienated vast swathes of the Ukrainian populace. The rejection of the Kiev coup was overt, and the coup leaders' response to that rejection horrifying. No matter how much western media have tried to brush it under the carpet, the mass murder in Odessa last May polarised opinion. Those with Russian sympathies realised they were targets, and so the kick-back happened. In Donetsk and Luhansk, this mayterialised as mass support for declarations of independence, in Kharkhiv more subtle, partisan resistance, but the fact is irrefutable. Kiev only rules via terror.

And now that terror is to be overtly supported by Washington. Honesty, at least and at last. The warmongers have their war.

Zogz 1 Feb 2015 21:21

Only a matte of time till the US arms Kiev. They have been itching to do it since they organized the coup. The "military advisors" are already on the ground some suggest they are working with the Kiev troops. Whist such war mongery is not unusal for the US, I cannot help bu be suprised with EU reactions. Allowing the US to escalate tensions on the border of Europe is foolhardy in the extreme. All it wll do is make Europe more dependent on the US, more insecure, and more at risk. A win win for the US, but for Europe?

AstheticTheory 1 Feb 2015 21:08

So America has revealed its open secret: it intervened to secure the government in Ukraine it wanted and now it is prepared to escalate its defence of its new possession

[Feb 01, 2015] Putin must be stopped. And sometimes only guns can stop guns

If west make Yats, Turchinov, Poroshenko, Kolomysky, Avakov and Co Persona non grata - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia in EU and USA and the USA annul green-card/citizenship for crimes committed the war would stop in one day. They don't want to do that, so that means that they want the continuation of the war. From comments: 'From the increasingly hysterical pronouncements form Garton Ash, Bildt and other luminaries of Post-Democratic Europe it seems they are getting nervous about their gravy train hitting the buffers."
Notable quotes:
"... The same country (Germany) caused Yugoslavia to be destroyed ..."
Feb 01, 2015 | The Guardian

CityCalledNain 1 Feb 2015 16:54

From the increasingly hysterical pronouncements form Garton Ash, Bildt and other luminaries of Post-Democratic Europe it seems they are getting nervous about their gravy train hitting the buffers.

Grexit, Brexit, Spexit .....

This all spells trouble for people who live high on the hog off the largesse of EU NGO funds.


Kyrin Bekuloff -> Lesia Menchynska 1 Feb 2015 16:54

Yeah, I actually understand both Russian and Ukrainian, and I can tell you with complete confidence that the Ukrainian side is full of nutheads. The latest thing they claimed is that they destroyed a Russian Armata tank. (yet they haven't even been built yet)

Miriam Bergholz 1 Feb 2015 16:53

"We need to counter this propaganda not with lies of our own but with reliable information and a scrupulously presented array of different views. No one is better placed to do this than the BBC."

I couldn't stop laughing!

Even better: "The US may have the best drones in the world, and Germany the best machine tools, but Britain has the best international broadcaster." As in: the US kills better, Germany makes the best machines (do you refer to guns or spades?), and the UK broadcast the best news on what? Invasion of Iraq, Lybia, etc.etc. torture, Chilcot inquire? What? Oh yes, the need to confront Russia at all cost.

Though I recorded the fact that the BBC actually at some point reported on the neo-nazi batallion in East Ukraine, issue that Russian and other media did report from the very beginning. I suppose that now that apparently the batallion have been dispersed, (though they said that they will continue fighting) it will start (again) the demonization of Putin. What is the move now? Convince us on the necessity to send NATO troops to replace them?

The corporate media have been competing in informing with half lies and half truth, very easy to catch, so, how can you convince somebody? There is a lot of very good alternative media in the US, Europe, and Asia. If established papers like the Guardian wants to keep their readers should start doing what they are supposed to do: tell the truth but nothing but the truth, and please not more crap about Putin, it is very boring, though I recognize it was kind of funny the Independent telling that Putin is a psychopath. You should read the comments, very enlightening. I asked whether they had the pressure from the government to start again this crude demonization. The Guardian as well? It is a very good sync because there are at the least four European news telling more or less the same with some different dramatics!

Anyway, why the stress? Is it because the results of the Greece election and some of their statements regarding Russia? or it is that NATO really wants a war with Russia and you are trying to convince us that it is a very good idea? Or is it that the alternative media is gaining the field? All three?


halduell 1 Feb 2015 16:52

And again, who "has deployed heavy military equipment, energy-supply blackmail, cyber-attack, propaganda by sophisticated, well-funded broadcasters, covert operations and agents of influence in EU capitals"?

Through the looking glass here with a monstrous piece of yellow journalism in which up is down, back is front and the phenomenon of projection is apparent in every sentence.
Rubbish, Mr Ash. Pure rubbish.


micktravis1968 1 Feb 2015 16:52

Btw I wonder if James Harding, the head of BBC News, is any relation to Luke Harding, the Graun correspondent whose Kiev-Junta -friendly dispatches from East Ukraine are reminiscent of the sort of reports the Volkischer Beobachter correspondents used to send from places like Guernica.


whitja01 1 Feb 2015 16:48

Apparently, Obama just admitted on CNN to the US being involved in 'brokering power-transition' in Ukraine, i.e. regime change. So now we have not only Nuland's word, but that of the US president himself.

So who is the war-monger, TGA? Who is the greater danger to world peace, Russia or the US?


RoyRoger 1 Feb 2015 16:46

Putin must be stopped.

Mr. Timothy Garton Ash !!!.

Why did we not hear you shout: Rasmussen, Nuland, Kerry, McCain, Hague and Ashton ''must be stopped!!?

'' Must be stopped '' entering a sovereign democratic country that was less then 12 months from their general election.

Why did we not hear you shout ''must be stopped'' from giving sustenance to a bunch of, Kiev, Molotov cocktail throwing police murdering (39 dead and 139 injured) coup d' etat' neo Nazis; thugs.

Mr. Timothy Garton Ash, blame, Putin, and the Russian people for all manner of things across the world if you wish and the suggestion that, Putin, eats four babies for breakfasts every monning.

But one thing I know; the blame for the troubles in, Ukraine, rests with the Corporate corrupt White House and NATO. The Ukraine is their self-made crisis and it will, very soon, bite the bastards on the arse.

These incompetent fuckers, Rasmussen, Nuland, Kerry, McCain, Hague and Ashton, will go down in history as the creators of the biggest political and economical blunder in history.

Come on !!, Mr. Timothy Garton Ash, fess-up, you know in your heart that Putin and the Russian people did not create the coup d' etat' in, Kiev.

If these five political imbeciles, Rasmussen, Nuland, Kerry, McCain, Hague and Ashton, had not gone swanning around the, Maidan Square in, Kiev, we would't be in the mess we are now. This is NATO's and the Corporate corrupt White House fucking political disaster.

And the bill is going to be dropped in the laps of the Europeans.

We must never forget: Ukraine is not part of the European Union nor is it a member of NATO. So what the fuck are we doing sticking our fucking noses in a sovereign democratic country without a mandate from our Parliament?


herditbefore 1 Feb 2015 16:44

The situation in the Ukraine is the same as was the case in Cyprus. There was a government that wanted to take Cyprus into a union with Greece, the north mostly Turkish speakers opposed this and Turkey stood by their kith and kin.

In the Ukraine there is a government which wants to go into a union with the EU and the eastern ethnic Russians oppose this.

There as been a cease fire in Cyprus for about 40 years, not ideal but it does not stop the mainly Greek Cypriots from joining the EU or getting on with life, the same thing could happen with the eastern Ukraine if they think they will be happier outside of the EU let them.

The grass is not always better on the other side and living is not just about Mercedes and BMWs.


Klashii 1 Feb 2015 16:44

As a direct result of the kind of garbage TGA is advocating here, millions have already died in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Libya and elsewhere this century. And how could we forget Vietnam in the last century when the US tried to bring 'democracy' to those that weren't in the slightest bit interested in having it.

When will the West wake up and realize that not everyone wants 'democracy'shoved down their throats - especially American 'democracy'.


rodmclaughlin 1 Feb 2015 16:43

"Ukraine urgently needs military support". Go to hell. For NATO to give military support to Kiev would be a dangerous escalation. A cornered bear is a dangerous animal. The author is effectively asking people in the NATO countries to risk their lives for Kiev. Interfering in the nations located on the tank practice ground between Moscow and Berlin always ends in tears.

NikLot 1 Feb 2015 16:41

"German chancellor Angela Merkel and foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier have been right to keep trying diplomacy, but even they concluded in mid-January that it wasn't worth going to meet Putin in Kazakhstan."

Why should anyone care what Herr and Frau think on the subject!? They essentially torpedoed any jaw-jaw, giving preference to the alternative - it is Ukrainian and Russian blood after all.

The same country (Germany) caused Yugoslavia to be destroyed, the moment they got reunited, with Britain and France staying shamefully quiet. The Helsinki final document was torn to shreds with that.

[Feb 01, 2015] Putin must be stopped. And sometimes only guns can stop guns

If west make Yats, Turchinov, Poroshenko, Kolomysky, Avakov and Co Persona non grata - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia in EU and USA and the USA annul green-card/citizenship for crimes committed the war would stop in one day. They don't want to do that, so that means that they want the continuation of the war. From comments: 'From the increasingly hysterical pronouncements form Garton Ash, Bildt and other luminaries of Post-Democratic Europe it seems they are getting nervous about their gravy train hitting the buffers."
Notable quotes:
"... The same country (Germany) caused Yugoslavia to be destroyed ..."
Feb 01, 2015 | The Guardian

CityCalledNain 1 Feb 2015 16:54

From the increasingly hysterical pronouncements form Garton Ash, Bildt and other luminaries of Post-Democratic Europe it seems they are getting nervous about their gravy train hitting the buffers.

Grexit, Brexit, Spexit .....

This all spells trouble for people who live high on the hog off the largesse of EU NGO funds.


Kyrin Bekuloff -> Lesia Menchynska 1 Feb 2015 16:54

Yeah, I actually understand both Russian and Ukrainian, and I can tell you with complete confidence that the Ukrainian side is full of nutheads. The latest thing they claimed is that they destroyed a Russian Armata tank. (yet they haven't even been built yet)

Miriam Bergholz 1 Feb 2015 16:53

"We need to counter this propaganda not with lies of our own but with reliable information and a scrupulously presented array of different views. No one is better placed to do this than the BBC."

I couldn't stop laughing!

Even better: "The US may have the best drones in the world, and Germany the best machine tools, but Britain has the best international broadcaster." As in: the US kills better, Germany makes the best machines (do you refer to guns or spades?), and the UK broadcast the best news on what? Invasion of Iraq, Lybia, etc.etc. torture, Chilcot inquire? What? Oh yes, the need to confront Russia at all cost.

Though I recorded the fact that the BBC actually at some point reported on the neo-nazi batallion in East Ukraine, issue that Russian and other media did report from the very beginning. I suppose that now that apparently the batallion have been dispersed, (though they said that they will continue fighting) it will start (again) the demonization of Putin. What is the move now? Convince us on the necessity to send NATO troops to replace them?

The corporate media have been competing in informing with half lies and half truth, very easy to catch, so, how can you convince somebody? There is a lot of very good alternative media in the US, Europe, and Asia. If established papers like the Guardian wants to keep their readers should start doing what they are supposed to do: tell the truth but nothing but the truth, and please not more crap about Putin, it is very boring, though I recognize it was kind of funny the Independent telling that Putin is a psychopath. You should read the comments, very enlightening. I asked whether they had the pressure from the government to start again this crude demonization. The Guardian as well? It is a very good sync because there are at the least four European news telling more or less the same with some different dramatics!

Anyway, why the stress? Is it because the results of the Greece election and some of their statements regarding Russia? or it is that NATO really wants a war with Russia and you are trying to convince us that it is a very good idea? Or is it that the alternative media is gaining the field? All three?


halduell 1 Feb 2015 16:52

And again, who "has deployed heavy military equipment, energy-supply blackmail, cyber-attack, propaganda by sophisticated, well-funded broadcasters, covert operations and agents of influence in EU capitals"?

Through the looking glass here with a monstrous piece of yellow journalism in which up is down, back is front and the phenomenon of projection is apparent in every sentence.
Rubbish, Mr Ash. Pure rubbish.


micktravis1968 1 Feb 2015 16:52

Btw I wonder if James Harding, the head of BBC News, is any relation to Luke Harding, the Graun correspondent whose Kiev-Junta -friendly dispatches from East Ukraine are reminiscent of the sort of reports the Volkischer Beobachter correspondents used to send from places like Guernica.


whitja01 1 Feb 2015 16:48

Apparently, Obama just admitted on CNN to the US being involved in 'brokering power-transition' in Ukraine, i.e. regime change. So now we have not only Nuland's word, but that of the US president himself.

So who is the war-monger, TGA? Who is the greater danger to world peace, Russia or the US?


RoyRoger 1 Feb 2015 16:46

Putin must be stopped.

Mr. Timothy Garton Ash !!!.

Why did we not hear you shout: Rasmussen, Nuland, Kerry, McCain, Hague and Ashton ''must be stopped!!?

'' Must be stopped '' entering a sovereign democratic country that was less then 12 months from their general election.

Why did we not hear you shout ''must be stopped'' from giving sustenance to a bunch of, Kiev, Molotov cocktail throwing police murdering (39 dead and 139 injured) coup d' etat' neo Nazis; thugs.

Mr. Timothy Garton Ash, blame, Putin, and the Russian people for all manner of things across the world if you wish and the suggestion that, Putin, eats four babies for breakfasts every monning.

But one thing I know; the blame for the troubles in, Ukraine, rests with the Corporate corrupt White House and NATO. The Ukraine is their self-made crisis and it will, very soon, bite the bastards on the arse.

These incompetent fuckers, Rasmussen, Nuland, Kerry, McCain, Hague and Ashton, will go down in history as the creators of the biggest political and economical blunder in history.

Come on !!, Mr. Timothy Garton Ash, fess-up, you know in your heart that Putin and the Russian people did not create the coup d' etat' in, Kiev.

If these five political imbeciles, Rasmussen, Nuland, Kerry, McCain, Hague and Ashton, had not gone swanning around the, Maidan Square in, Kiev, we would't be in the mess we are now. This is NATO's and the Corporate corrupt White House fucking political disaster.

And the bill is going to be dropped in the laps of the Europeans.

We must never forget: Ukraine is not part of the European Union nor is it a member of NATO. So what the fuck are we doing sticking our fucking noses in a sovereign democratic country without a mandate from our Parliament?


herditbefore 1 Feb 2015 16:44

The situation in the Ukraine is the same as was the case in Cyprus. There was a government that wanted to take Cyprus into a union with Greece, the north mostly Turkish speakers opposed this and Turkey stood by their kith and kin.

In the Ukraine there is a government which wants to go into a union with the EU and the eastern ethnic Russians oppose this.

There as been a cease fire in Cyprus for about 40 years, not ideal but it does not stop the mainly Greek Cypriots from joining the EU or getting on with life, the same thing could happen with the eastern Ukraine if they think they will be happier outside of the EU let them.

The grass is not always better on the other side and living is not just about Mercedes and BMWs.


Klashii 1 Feb 2015 16:44

As a direct result of the kind of garbage TGA is advocating here, millions have already died in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Libya and elsewhere this century. And how could we forget Vietnam in the last century when the US tried to bring 'democracy' to those that weren't in the slightest bit interested in having it.

When will the West wake up and realize that not everyone wants 'democracy'shoved down their throats - especially American 'democracy'.


rodmclaughlin 1 Feb 2015 16:43

"Ukraine urgently needs military support". Go to hell. For NATO to give military support to Kiev would be a dangerous escalation. A cornered bear is a dangerous animal. The author is effectively asking people in the NATO countries to risk their lives for Kiev. Interfering in the nations located on the tank practice ground between Moscow and Berlin always ends in tears.

NikLot 1 Feb 2015 16:41

"German chancellor Angela Merkel and foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier have been right to keep trying diplomacy, but even they concluded in mid-January that it wasn't worth going to meet Putin in Kazakhstan."

Why should anyone care what Herr and Frau think on the subject!? They essentially torpedoed any jaw-jaw, giving preference to the alternative - it is Ukrainian and Russian blood after all.

The same country (Germany) caused Yugoslavia to be destroyed, the moment they got reunited, with Britain and France staying shamefully quiet. The Helsinki final document was torn to shreds with that.

[Feb 01, 2015] US considers providing arms to Ukraine as rebels step up attacks, says report

It does not make much sense to read or quote that article: a typical propaganda peace... From comments:
"The Guardian, not alone among the western MSM, that has been incredibly biased in reporting on what is happening in Ukraine. It would be reasonable to expect less blatantly biased reporting from The Guardian, and it amazes me that day after day it faithfully repeats the propaganda from the US etal as though it is fact-based news ... in many cases, especially, for example, when reporting on the shelling of towns (e.g. Mariupol) it reports shelling by the Kiev 'government' as being shelling by the Novorussians - why do this?
and
"Typical propaganda comment. In your opinion peace will not be reach until Russia bends over to Uncle Sam and say yes sir no sir three bags full sir? I don't think it's in their nature. Whole world knows current PM of Ukraine is appointed by US foreign office. Do a bit of research it helps with facts"
Notable quotes:
"... Doesn't he realize that the only time when Poroshenko talks about cease fire is when he is under pressure from the rebels. ..."
"... Couldn't Obama mind his own business for once? ..."
"... Ukraine is a failed state. It has ceased to exist as anything but the frontline for US geopolitical machinations. ..."
"... I am sure they don't want to be enslaved to the CIA either. ..."
Feb 01, 2015 | The Guardian

TG Asch, everybody's closet neoliberal and neocon, blah-piece today is simply warmongering dressed-up as journalism - equating Putin to Milosevic simply illustrates his lack of current or historical knowledge and understanding. Asch was and is in fact a propagandist, not a journalist.

There is a wealth of much more accurate and nuanced information on what has and is happening in the Ukraine available in the public domain. It seems that the people working for The Guardian (and the BBC) are choosing to ignore this and stick to the White House's and Downing Street's disinformation handouts" ...

For The Guardian to be posting pieces advocating more war - as Asch does - is simply irresponsible in the current circumstances, especially when it is impossible to find any alternate views being given any space at all - not equal space, any space - by The Guardian. Balance, Fairness, Judgment, Independence - these all seem to have gone out the window when it comes to the Ukraine and The Guardian has placed itself on the side of the warmongers.

Why is the Guardian doing this?

Selected Skeptical Comments

vr13vr 1 Feb 2015 22:29

Looks like Obama's goal is to maintain the conflict there indefinitely. Doesn't he realize that the only time when Poroshenko talks about cease fire is when he is under pressure from the rebels. If you give him more weapons, and if you embolden him, he will not be talking about truce.

This conflict will just go on, and that's what Obama seems to prefer.

edwardrice peacefulmilitant 1 Feb 2015 22:29

Putin has ''pushed'' Obama? Couldn't Obama mind his own business for once?

What has a deeply corrupt bankrupt dysfunctional country 1000s of miles from the US got to do with the Obama? Why should the US tax payer fund another foreign war?

What right does the US have to trample over the heads of 500 million Europeans and escalate a civil war in Europe!

scruffythejanitor 1 Feb 2015 22:28

I really don't see much American enthusiasm to be involved in Ukraine- it seems more like they can't extricate themselves from it. Nations seem to behave like nations. The US is committed to supporting Europe and condemning russian aggression in annexing Ukraine, as any large country would when one country violates another's sovereignty. You don't get to violate another country's borders, officially.

Russia persistently cries foul whenever the US publicly interferes with another nation's affairs, such as in Iraq, the presumption being that each country does not clandestinely interfere in it's own way. The crocodile tears over US violations of sovereignty looked a lot more convincing ten years ago than they do today.

ID1011951 1 Feb 2015 22:28

The Guardian, not alone among the western MSM, that has been incredibly biased in reporting on what is happening in Ukraine. It would be reasonable to expect less blatantly biased reporting from The Guardian, and it amazes me that day after day it faithfully repeats the propaganda from the US etal as though it is fact-based news ... in many cases, especially, for example, when reporting on the shelling of towns (e.g. Mariupol) it reports shelling by the Kiev 'government' as being shelling by the Novorussians - why do this?

TG Asch, everybody's closet neoliberal and neocon, blah-piece today is simply warmongering dressed-up as journalism - equating Putin to Milosevic simply illustrates his lack of current or historical knowledge and understanding. Asch was and is in fact a propagandist, not a journalist.

There is a wealth of much more accurate and nuanced information on what has and is happening in the Ukraine available in the public domain. It seems that the people working for The Guardian (and the BBC) are choosing to ignore this and stick to the White House's and Downing Street's disinformation handouts ...

For The Guardian to be posting pieces advocating more war - as Asch does - is simply irresponsible in the current circumstances, especially when it is impossible to find any alternate views being given any space at all - not equal space, any space - by The Guardian. Balance, Fairness, Judgment, Independence - these all seem to have gone out the window when it comes to the Ukraine and The Guardian has placed itself on the side of the warmongers.

Why is the Guardian doing this?

Dugan222 1 Feb 2015 22:07

Great....my disgust is beyond words. In all the peace talks, there were not a single American representative present. When comes to arming Ukraine, America is already taking the lead and making unilateral decisions even without the EU consent. Yeah, leading from behind when comes to peace. Taking a leadership role when comes to starting a war. America is greatest. I guess Russia will do the same openly and officially. Ukrainian crisis will become a proxy war for the West to bring back the Cold War.

Both the Russian backed separatists and American backed Ukrainians will murder and kill each others...until a demarcation line is drawn somewhere in Kiev. Wondering who would build the Kiev Wall first. The East, the Russian side, or the West, American side?? Ha...the Kiev Wall.... Is not America's problem since the conflict is thousands of miles away.

BTW, Ukraine has been received arms through various Nato members already. And there are reports of US mercenaries on the ground as well. Obviously, the Obama administration wants to make it official. For Putin, he does not really need to make it official though.

GardenShedFever -> David Dalton Lytle Jr. 1 Feb 2015 22:06

I'm English, but I think you are American.

And film of weapons caches captured from the cyborgs that include brand new, advanced weapons not issued to the Ukraine military (but, of course, the cyborgs are Kolomoisky's merceneries, supported by McCain et al) demonstrates the US finger in the Kiev pie.

GardenShedFever HHeLiBe 1 Feb 2015 22:02

Poroshenko was "elected" on the lowest turnout in Ukraine's history, with vast swathes of Ukraine boycotting the election, opposition parties banned, opposition politicians abused, assaulted, and disappeared.

There is no democracy in Ukraine. Its sovereignty disappeared with the US sponsored coup that toppled Yanukovych.

HollyOldDog HHeLiBe 1 Feb 2015 22:00

Since when? The West Ukraine army never put into practice the last MINSK Agreement. The shelling on East Ukraine never stopped.

GardenShedFever HHeLiBe 1 Feb 2015 21:57

Good enough to know that, with a boycott of elections in the south and east of Ukraine, there is not even a semblance of democracy there, as the people are neither represented in Kiev, nor do they want to.

Ukraine is a failed state. It has ceased to exist as anything but the frontline for US geopolitical machinations.

When the EU made a last ditch agreement with Yanukovych, to introduce early elections, what was the US response?

"Fuck the EU" said Victoria Nuland. That tells you all you need to know.


MediaWatchDog ID6674371 1 Feb 2015 21:56

Typical propaganda comment. In your opinion peace will not be reach until Russia bends over to Uncle Sam and say yes sir no sir three bags full sir? I don't think it's in their nature. Whole world knows current PM of Ukraine is appointed by US forigen office. Do a bit of research it helps with facts

Parangaricurimicuaro 1 Feb 2015 21:54

This new development only shows how badly Kiev is losing.

MediaWatchDog 1 Feb 2015 21:51

German Chancellor Angela Markels mobile phone is/was tapped by US president and her plan for peaceful and democratic settlement of Ukraine was fu**ed by US forigen deputy secretary Victoria Nuland.

Now CIA is in full command arming extremists, again!

MediaWatchDog -> Kavi Mazumdar 1 Feb 2015 21:45

Scotland style referendum? Scaremongering and ganging up on voters by big businesses and Westminster politicians? F that it will hard to keep Victoria Nuland types out, CIA is way too powerful than Westminster. Why not have a proper referendum, not like Crimea or Scotland!

MediaWatchDog -> randomguyfromoz 1 Feb 2015 21:42

Ethic Russians don't want to be part of Russia in your opinion? You are probably right, I am sure they don't want to be enslaved to the CIA either.

Zwoman48 1 Feb 2015 21:41

The U.S. instigated and supported the coup in Ukraine and is thinking of arming the fascists. All you need to know, everyone.

MediaWatchDog 1 Feb 2015 21:40

Fact 1. Victoria Nuland topple old regime and appointed Yats as nations PM, fuc**d EU plan of democratic transional government.

Fact 2. Since then head of CIA and other top level US officials have actively involved on Ukraine.

Fact 3. Now they are considering providing weapons.

Thanks to the US Empire for successfully opening up new cold war at European borders.

Hoon -> Ai Ooi 1 Feb 2015 21:34

Someone has to pay for this. The UK had just finish paying USA for their debts from the 1st World War! What about the 2nd? And now Ukrain! & Middle East. This will bankrupt the EU for sure!

Zwoman48 HHeLiBe 1 Feb 2015 21:44

Bollocks! That's the absolute lie the western media wants you to swallow. Oh. I see you HAVE.

HHeLiBe -> Kavi Mazumdar 1 Feb 2015 21:32

How about Pakistan invades Kashmir with special forces, causes so much disturbance all the Indians flee for their lives, and then forces a referendum on those who remain?

TommyGuardianReader , Feb 1, 2015 21:31

Given that comments have prematurely been closed on yesterday's Guardian "Comment is Free" article, in which a salesman masquerading as a journalist spins the line that "sometimes only guns can stop guns",

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/feb/01/putin-stopped-ukraine-military-support-russian-propaganda

It's worth reflecting that guns can stop gunners and civilians (see Martin Place), but they cannot stop guns. Whether it's Tokyo or Dallas, Texas, guns, munitions and drones are big money.

During the First World War the British government continued to pay Krupp's of Essen royalties for some of their gun patents. It was probably insider traders linked to Krupp's of Essen who dobbed in Sir Roger Casement's naive attempts to get German arms to Irish independence fighters in order to try to avert the long-planned Imperial utility World War.

He was a bit like the David Kelly of his day, in that he got in the way of the machine.

By the way, on an unrelated matter, isn't all this noise about Russia and Putin distracting us from the Chilcott Inquiry, and the roles of Bush, Cheney and Putin in the Coalition Of The Willing?

As Don Henderson wrote in his song "Was War For Those Who Want It":

"The men who build the planes and make the tanks
Are neutral and get payment in Swiss francs
While the rich on both sides prosper the poor will kill the poor
Was war for those who want it, they would want an end to war."


Maria Meri 1 Feb 2015 21:30

Can anybody name one year after the 2nd WW whn the US hadn't been policing somewhr - war indeed seems to form it's economic base (commies said this ages ago)

GardenShedFever 1 Feb 2015 21:21

Considering the weapons caches captured by the rebels after dislodging Ukraine's "cyborgs" from Donetsk airport, the US has been arming Kiev's forces for some time. Advanced US weapons are not routine equipment for the Ukraine military, are they?
It is no surprise the USA is clamouring to escalate this civil war. They began it, and they expected a near bloodless coup, like the Orange Revolution. Their problem this time, however, was they backed and funded far-right Ukrainian Nationalists who are despised in the South and East, and although the Maidan protests had sympathy, the commandeering of those protests by Right Sektor and Svoboda has alienated vast swathes of the Ukrainian populace. The rejection of the Kiev coup was overt, and the coup leaders' response to that rejection horrifying. No matter how much western media have tried to brush it under the carpet, the mass murder in Odessa last May polarised opinion. Those with Russian sympathies realised they were targets, and so the kick-back happened. In Donetsk and Luhansk, this mayterialised as mass support for declarations of independence, in Kharkhiv more subtle, partisan resistance, but the fact is irrefutable. Kiev only rules via terror.

And now that terror is to be overtly supported by Washington. Honesty, at least and at last. The warmongers have their war.

Zogz 1 Feb 2015 21:21

Only a matte of time till the US arms Kiev. They have been itching to do it since they organized the coup. The "military advisors" are already on the ground some suggest they are working with the Kiev troops. Whist such war mongery is not unusal for the US, I cannot help bu be suprised with EU reactions. Allowing the US to escalate tensions on the border of Europe is foolhardy in the extreme. All it wll do is make Europe more dependent on the US, more insecure, and more at risk. A win win for the US, but for Europe?

AstheticTheory 1 Feb 2015 21:08

So America has revealed its open secret: it intervened to secure the government in Ukraine it wanted and now it is prepared to escalate its defence of its new possession

[Jan 30, 2015] Ukraine Through the Fog of the Presstitutes by Paul Craig Roberts

Mar 06, 2014 | CounterPunch

Gerald Celente calls the Western media "presstitutes," an ingenuous term that I often use. Presstitutes sell themselves to Washington for access and government sources and to keep their jobs. Ever since the corrupt Clinton regime permitted the concentration of the US media, there has been no journalistic independence in the United States except for some Internet sites.

Glenn Greenwald points out the independence that RT, a Russian media organization, permits Abby Martin who denounced Russia's alleged invasion of Ukraine, compared to the fates of Phil Donahue (MSNBC) and Peter Arnett (NBC), both of whom were fired for expressing opposition to the Bush regime's illegal attack on Iraq. The fact that Donahue had NBC's highest rated program did not give him journalistic independence. Anyone who speaks the truth in the American print or TV media or on NPR is immediately fired.

Russia's RT seems actually to believe and observe the values that Americans profess but do not honor.

I agree with Greenwald. You can read his article here. Greenwald is entirely admirable. He has intelligence, integrity, and courage. He is one of the brave to whom my just published book, How America Was Lost, is dedicated. As for RT's Abby Martin, I admire her and have been a guest on her program a number of times.

My criticism of Greenwald and Martin has nothing to do with their integrity or their character. I doubt the claims that Abby Martin grandstanded on "Russia's invasion of Ukraine" in order to boost her chances of moving into the more lucrative "mainstream media." My point is quite different. Even Abby Martin and Greenwald, both of whom bring us much light, cannot fully escape Western propaganda.

For example, Martin's denunciation of Russia for "invading" Ukraine is based on Western propaganda that Russia sent 16,000 troops to occupy Crimea. The fact of the matter is that those 16,000 Russian troops have been in Crimea since the 1990s. Under the Russian-Ukrainian agreement, Russia has the right to base 25,000 troops in Crimea.

Apparently, neither Abby Martin nor Glenn Greenwald, two intelligent and aware people, knew this fact. Washington's propaganda is so pervasive that two of our best reporters were victimized by it.

As I have written several times in my columns, Washington organized the coup in Ukraine in order to promote its world hegemony by capturing Ukraine for NATO and putting US missile bases on Russia's border in order to degrade Russia's nuclear deterrent and force Russia to accept Washington's hegemony.

Russia has done nothing but respond in a very low-key way to a major strategic threat orchestrated by Washington.

It is not only Martin and Greenwald who have fallen under Washington's propaganda.

They are joined by Patrick J. Buchanan. Pat's column calling on readers to "resist the war party on Crimea" opens with Washington's propagandistic claim: "With Vladimir Putin's dispatch of Russian Troops into Crimea."

No such dispatch has occurred. Putin has been granted authority by the Russian Duma to send troops to Ukraine, but Putin has stated publicly that sending troops would be a last resort to protect Crimean Russians from invasions by the ultra-nationalist neo-nazis who stole Washington's coup and established themselves as the power in Kiev and western Ukraine.

So, here we have three of the smartest and most independent journalists of our time, and all three are under the impression created by Western propaganda that Russia has invaded Ukraine.

It appears that the power of Washington's propaganda is so great that not even the best and most independent journalists can escape its influence.

What chance does truth have when Abby Martin gets kudos from Glenn Greenwald for denouncing Russia for an alleged "invasion" that has not taken place, and when independent Pat Buchanan opens his column dissenting from the blame-Russia-crowd by accepting that an invasion has taken place?

The entire story that the presstitutes have told about the Ukraine is a propaganda production. The presstitutes told us that the deposed president, Viktor Yanukovych, ordered snipers to shoot protesters. On the basis of these false reports, Washington's stooges, who comprise the existing non-government in Kiev, have issued arrest orders for Yanukovych and intend for him to be tried in an international court. In an intercepted telephone call between EU foreign affairs minister Catherine Ashton and Etonian foreign affairs minister Urmas Paet who had just returned from Kiev, Paet reports: "There is now stronger and stronger understanding that behind the snipers, it was not Yanukovych, but it was somebody from the new coalition." Paet goes on to report that "all the evidence shows that the people who were killed by snipers from both sides, among policemen and then people from the streets, that they were the same snipers killing people from both sides . . . and it's really disturbing that now the new coalition, that they don't want to investigate what exactly happened." Ashton, absorbed with EU plans to guide reforms in Ukraine and to prepare the way for the IMF to gain control over economic policy, was not particularly pleased to hear Paet's report that the killings were an orchestrated provocation. You can listen to the conversation between Paet and Ashton here: http://rt.com/news/ashton-maidan-snipers-estonia-946/

What has happened in Ukraine is that Washington plotted against and overthrew an elected legitimate government and then lost control to neo-nazis who are threatening the large Russian population in southern and eastern Ukraine, provinces that formerly were part of Russia. These threatened Russians have appealed for Russia's help, and just like the Russians in South Ossetia, they will receive Russia's help.

The Obama regime and its presstitutes will continue to lie about everything.

Paul Craig Roberts is a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury and Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal. His latest book The Failure of Laissez-Faire Capitalism. Roberts' How the Economy Was Lost is now available from CounterPunch in electronic format.

[Jan 30, 2015] Ukraine Through the Fog of the Presstitutes by Paul Craig Roberts

Mar 06, 2014 | CounterPunch

Gerald Celente calls the Western media "presstitutes," an ingenuous term that I often use. Presstitutes sell themselves to Washington for access and government sources and to keep their jobs. Ever since the corrupt Clinton regime permitted the concentration of the US media, there has been no journalistic independence in the United States except for some Internet sites.

Glenn Greenwald points out the independence that RT, a Russian media organization, permits Abby Martin who denounced Russia's alleged invasion of Ukraine, compared to the fates of Phil Donahue (MSNBC) and Peter Arnett (NBC), both of whom were fired for expressing opposition to the Bush regime's illegal attack on Iraq. The fact that Donahue had NBC's highest rated program did not give him journalistic independence. Anyone who speaks the truth in the American print or TV media or on NPR is immediately fired.

Russia's RT seems actually to believe and observe the values that Americans profess but do not honor.

I agree with Greenwald. You can read his article here. Greenwald is entirely admirable. He has intelligence, integrity, and courage. He is one of the brave to whom my just published book, How America Was Lost, is dedicated. As for RT's Abby Martin, I admire her and have been a guest on her program a number of times.

My criticism of Greenwald and Martin has nothing to do with their integrity or their character. I doubt the claims that Abby Martin grandstanded on "Russia's invasion of Ukraine" in order to boost her chances of moving into the more lucrative "mainstream media." My point is quite different. Even Abby Martin and Greenwald, both of whom bring us much light, cannot fully escape Western propaganda.

For example, Martin's denunciation of Russia for "invading" Ukraine is based on Western propaganda that Russia sent 16,000 troops to occupy Crimea. The fact of the matter is that those 16,000 Russian troops have been in Crimea since the 1990s. Under the Russian-Ukrainian agreement, Russia has the right to base 25,000 troops in Crimea.

Apparently, neither Abby Martin nor Glenn Greenwald, two intelligent and aware people, knew this fact. Washington's propaganda is so pervasive that two of our best reporters were victimized by it.

As I have written several times in my columns, Washington organized the coup in Ukraine in order to promote its world hegemony by capturing Ukraine for NATO and putting US missile bases on Russia's border in order to degrade Russia's nuclear deterrent and force Russia to accept Washington's hegemony.

Russia has done nothing but respond in a very low-key way to a major strategic threat orchestrated by Washington.

It is not only Martin and Greenwald who have fallen under Washington's propaganda.

They are joined by Patrick J. Buchanan. Pat's column calling on readers to "resist the war party on Crimea" opens with Washington's propagandistic claim: "With Vladimir Putin's dispatch of Russian Troops into Crimea."

No such dispatch has occurred. Putin has been granted authority by the Russian Duma to send troops to Ukraine, but Putin has stated publicly that sending troops would be a last resort to protect Crimean Russians from invasions by the ultra-nationalist neo-nazis who stole Washington's coup and established themselves as the power in Kiev and western Ukraine.

So, here we have three of the smartest and most independent journalists of our time, and all three are under the impression created by Western propaganda that Russia has invaded Ukraine.

It appears that the power of Washington's propaganda is so great that not even the best and most independent journalists can escape its influence.

What chance does truth have when Abby Martin gets kudos from Glenn Greenwald for denouncing Russia for an alleged "invasion" that has not taken place, and when independent Pat Buchanan opens his column dissenting from the blame-Russia-crowd by accepting that an invasion has taken place?

The entire story that the presstitutes have told about the Ukraine is a propaganda production. The presstitutes told us that the deposed president, Viktor Yanukovych, ordered snipers to shoot protesters. On the basis of these false reports, Washington's stooges, who comprise the existing non-government in Kiev, have issued arrest orders for Yanukovych and intend for him to be tried in an international court. In an intercepted telephone call between EU foreign affairs minister Catherine Ashton and Etonian foreign affairs minister Urmas Paet who had just returned from Kiev, Paet reports: "There is now stronger and stronger understanding that behind the snipers, it was not Yanukovych, but it was somebody from the new coalition." Paet goes on to report that "all the evidence shows that the people who were killed by snipers from both sides, among policemen and then people from the streets, that they were the same snipers killing people from both sides . . . and it's really disturbing that now the new coalition, that they don't want to investigate what exactly happened." Ashton, absorbed with EU plans to guide reforms in Ukraine and to prepare the way for the IMF to gain control over economic policy, was not particularly pleased to hear Paet's report that the killings were an orchestrated provocation. You can listen to the conversation between Paet and Ashton here: http://rt.com/news/ashton-maidan-snipers-estonia-946/

What has happened in Ukraine is that Washington plotted against and overthrew an elected legitimate government and then lost control to neo-nazis who are threatening the large Russian population in southern and eastern Ukraine, provinces that formerly were part of Russia. These threatened Russians have appealed for Russia's help, and just like the Russians in South Ossetia, they will receive Russia's help.

The Obama regime and its presstitutes will continue to lie about everything.

Paul Craig Roberts is a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury and Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal. His latest book The Failure of Laissez-Faire Capitalism. Roberts' How the Economy Was Lost is now available from CounterPunch in electronic format.

[Jan 28, 2015] Ukraine at war: 'People feel abandoned'

Those brazen propagandists from Guardian now resort to postmodernism: "The fighting has intensified dramatically since last week". In reality this is indiscriminate shelling of Donetsk, one million city by Kiev army. Ukrainian army is shelling one million city in the center of Europe and nobody in Western capitals gives a f*ck.
Notable quotes:
"... Until recently, I also thought as you. But recently it became known fact that it was the Maidan smokescreen. Matter was not addressed in the Maidan. The question was decided in quiet rooms. Maidan does not put pressure on decision-making. (This issue was resolved in Washington) ..."
"... To me, the conflict is all about the the Galicians wanting to eradicate Russian civic identity. The Galicians have been like that from the start. In that respect, they are kind of like fanatics. ..."
"... It seems Russain Orthodox commanders did not take well the Scientologist from Lviv (Yats) and the Baptist with strong connections with the PL govt. (Turch.). ..."
"... The Ukrainian army is attacking its own people in the south east using indiscriminate shelling. The rebels have been defending for almost a year ..."
"... The reality is that most Ukrainians are not motivated to fight for Kiev. The Ukrainian people want peace. Only the Galician ideologically driven hard cores are willing to do combat, and their morale is falling fast because of their endless defeats. ..."
"... Ukrainian military casualties are roughly 3,500 killed in action, and another 9,000 wounded. That is shocking. Kiev is trying to hide the magnitude of the disaster from its own people, but Ukrainian citizens are becoming aware of the horrible battle losses. Entire villages in Ukraine are reportedly ignoring Kiev's draft notices. ..."
Jan 28, 2015 | The Guardian

The fighting has intensified dramatically since last week and the situation here is deteriorating rapidly. In the past five days, there has been heavy fighting. We hear the constant boom of shelling and crackle of shooting.

More than 70 houses are reported to have been damaged or destroyed in the last week, and several hospitals have been damaged since the fighting began in the summer. In recent days, a building of a psychiatric institution that we're supporting was destroyed by shelling.

It's getting more complicated to get into the areas caught in the conflict. Last week the checkpoints to cross into the rebel-controlled areas were closed and no one has been allowed to pass.

Medical supply lines have been cut and little medicine is getting through, as has been the case for months. When Médecins sans Frontières (MSF) started working here in May, we focused on supplying hospitals on the frontline with kits to treat war injuries. Obviously, when you're in a conflict zone, the frontline is where the people are being seriously injured and killed.

After months of stress on the health system, it is clear that the conflict is having an impact on the whole population of the area. Basic healthcare, maternity care, treatment of chronic diseases; everything is affected.

... ... ...


Mij Swerdna shakesomeaction 28 Jan 2015 18:56

More like Kiev won't let Donbas decide it's own destiny. It is not they who have gone to the west to kill. More like the other way around.


Mij Swerdna alpamysh 28 Jan 2015 18:04

Everyone here is responsible for their own actions. The side you are against is not responsible for what both sides do. People like you are devoid of compassion until hardships that you regard with indifference are visited on you and yours.

And then it's people like you who cry and whine the loudest.

Mij Swerdna -> alpamysh 28 Jan 2015 17:57

What are talking about? They did those things at Maidan- but that was okay because you sympathize with neo-Nazis. Hypocrite.

Mij Swerdna -> vr13vr 28 Jan 2015 16:07

And the Holodomor did not take place anywhere near the ones who go on about it the most. It happened in eastern Ukraine and southern Russia.

Mij Swerdna -> Pomario 28 Jan 2015 15:33

Your imagination seems to go to any lengths to make Russia a villain. You are motivated by hatred (bigotry, the stupid kind).

Mij Swerdna -> firstgeordie 28 Jan 2015 15:26

Very bigoted of you. Actually, they are more apt to sacrifice. I wouldn't confuse that virtue with a lack of respect for life because that very lack is more than rampant in the west except that there is a growing tendency on the part of the west to arrange for "lesser" peoples to serve as cannon fodder.

Mij Swerdna -> Pomario 28 Jan 2015 15:14

Not quite. What he was worried about was the massive propaganda blitz that would have resulted if Russia had opted to honor the Donbas referendum and annexed it. As it turns out, he needn't have. They were going to do what they were going to do to Russia regardless. They should have saved Donbas because those incompetent cowards in the west would not have challenged them militarily if they were part of Russia. There would be wailing and gnashing of teeth to be sure- but no destroyed infrastructure and no thousands of dead civilians and refugees.

The real aggressors in this conflict are the people who want to exterminate the people of Donbas. I am judging by actions mind you, not the lawyer like gibberish used to justify those actions. If it walks like a duck...

buttonbasher81 Robobenito 28 Jan 2015 14:51

Again you haven't actually stated what is meant by support, all you use are conjecture and conspiracy by reffering back to bad things the US has done in the past. All the thousands of people marching on the streets were all CIA operatives were they? Sounds about as believeable as putins Russian soldiers being in the East of Ukraine on holiday to me. And don't trot out that 5bn line, its been stated again and again that was spent over a number of years in the Ukraine and moreover some of which would have gone to Yanukovychs Government. You going to argue the US paid him to overthrow himself?


Mij Swerdna Jeremn 28 Jan 2015 08:43


They are inhuman. Kiev is ideologically driven by Lviv, Ternopil, Ivano-Frankivsk and Volyn (with US blessing).These oblasts had the highest voter turnout and were solidly in Yat's corner. The fact that the actual far right parties did not do well in elections means nothing. They are hiding behind Yats.


Kolo07 -> EddieGrey1967USA 28 Jan 2015 04:25

Until recently, I also thought as you.

But recently it became known fact that it was the Maidan smokescreen.

Matter was not addressed in the Maidan. The question was decided in quiet rooms.

Maidan does not put pressure on decision-making. (This issue was resolved in Washington)


EddieGrey1967USA BMWAlbert 27 Jan 2015 21:58

You are probably correct about the numbers of troops involved in Crimea. Thanks for the more accurate info. Still, your figures aren't too far out of line with mine.

I agree with your final comment about Donbas and a national unity government. It is quite interesting to consider what might have followed if the Euromaidan crew had been smart enough to reach out immediately to Donbass last February. Indeed, if they had included Donbass powerbrokers from the early days, they might have held the country together.

However, to include Donbass powerbrokers in Euromaidan, the new government would have needed to distance itself from the Galician ultranationalists. Do you think that could have happened in theory? My guess is that it couldn't have happened, now that I think about it. I say that because the Galicians were -- and continue to be -- a powerhouse behind the entire Euromaidan revolt, in addition to shaping the government that followed.

To me, the conflict is all about the the Galicians wanting to eradicate Russian civic identity. The Galicians have been like that from the start. In that respect, they are kind of like fanatics.

EddieGrey1967USA -> Oskar Jaeger 27 Jan 2015 21:52

There's a big difference between Serbia and Ukraine, though. That's because the USA is backing the nationalists in Kiev, essentially encouraging them to pursue the dream of an enlarged Ukraine, or a Greater Ukraine (fighting war to keep colonies in Donbass, etc.). By contrast, the USA was opposing Milosevic's efforts to create a Greater Serbia.

So, even after Yatsenyuk, Poroshenko, Lysenko, Parubiy, etc. are defeated and overthrown, they will never face war crimes tribunals. That's because they will have American protection.

The only exception to this situation is if the Russians actually capture Yats, Poroshenko, Parubiy etc. and charge them with war crimes. However I don't think this will happen. Most likely Yats & Co will escape west before that ever happens.

You make a very interesting point about Ukraine being divided on the issue of joining the EU and Russia. In that sense, post war Ukraine could resemble post-Milosevic Serbia. I agree.


BMWAlbert -> Oskar Jaeger 27 Jan 2015 19:51

Eddue, the Krim figures I have read state that there were 18,000 (maybe 2500 is paper strength, NOT the real strength).

Of these 18K I believe about one third (circa 6000) stayed with UA army and were allowed to leave.

Of the 12000 UA Army troops remaining, only half actually joined the RU Army. 6000 thus chose a 'middle way'. That 12000 total may be aligned with the 13000 figure you cite (?).

It might be noted that the whole of the semi-autonomous province might not have been lost at all had commanders of the UA Army reserve forces actually acted in March 2014 (as ordered) to secure the isthmus. They did not move. It seems Russain Orthodox commanders did not take well the Scientologist from Lviv (Yats) and the Baptist with strong connections with the PL govt. (Turch.).

Different people have different views on which North American and EU countries might have had influence over these important initial choices for PM and President at a time when UA needed a national unity govt. NOT a single cabinet post was chosen from Donbas. Not smart.


EddieGrey1967USA 27 Jan 2015 18:12

What will become of Ukraine, when this is all over?

When a nation is defeated in war, all of its people undergo psychological shock. The country questions its self-worth, and it experiments with changes in politics, culture, and social issues. Defeated nations do this as they come to terms with the realization that they have failed the ultimate test.

These periods of anguished, inward self-reflection on a national scale are especially true for countries that are defeated and conquered. We saw this in France after 1817, during the so-called La Belle Epoque. Something similar happened in Prussia after 1806, and in Germany after 1918 and 1945.

Ukraine will not only suffer defeat, but it may also lose its independence. How will this generation of young Ukrainians -- the so called Euromaidan Generation -- react to this national trauma? Everything that they have been raised to believe about themselves and their country will have been proven to be false...mythological. Just one big lie.

Young Ukrainians, after this war, will totally lose respect for the leaders movements like Euromaidan. These young people will question their own values and beliefs. Like the Germans after 1945, Ukrainians, I think, will then work hard to create a new and honest society for themselves. They will renounce ultranationalism, and they will advocate the virtues of peace and political stability.

That is when Ukraine's true moment of glory will occur. Defeated, conquered...true....but repentant, wise, and progressive. Ukrainians will then be celebrated worldwide for their maturity and commitment to peace, just like the West Germans after 1945.

EddieGrey1967USA -> Oskar Jaeger 27 Jan 2015 18:02

You are wrong. The rebel army is large and strong, particularly since so many Donbass men are now enlisting. Read yesterday's article in DB written by Kyiv Post writer/hack/propagandist James Miller and his colleague, Michael Weiss. They confirm this.

ID8787761 -> alpamysh 27 Jan 2015 15:12

Not true. US or UK solider caught on camera in Mariopul:
http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-01-25/out-my-face-please-why-are-us-soldiers-mariupol

The general is far from alone.

Actually you're not getting it old boy. The Ukrainian army is attacking its own people in the south east using indiscriminate shelling. The rebels have been defending for almost a year. And you plucked that 9000 number from thin air. Without tangible evidence your statement of 9000 people is meaningless.

EddieGrey1967USA 27 Jan 2015 15:11

What surprises me especially is that Western news suppresses information about the severity of Ukrainian military defeats. The Western media has been doing this from the very beginning.

For example, in Crimea last March, 13,000 Ukrainian troops defected to the Russians immediately. That is out of a total of 25,000 Ukrainian soldiers stationed in Crimea at the time. Only a few Western media sources reported the shocking truth about these Ukrainian defections.

The reality is that most Ukrainians are not motivated to fight for Kiev. The Ukrainian people want peace. Only the Galician ideologically driven hard cores are willing to do combat, and their morale is falling fast because of their endless defeats.

At this point in time, I would imagine that the Galician troops must feel overawed and frightened at the prospect of doing combat with the pro-Russian rebels. Does the Ukrainian military even have medical psychiatric support to treat the combat trauma suffered by these troops?

What will happen after the war, when these defeated and traumatized soldiers -- many suffering from combat induced psychosis -- return home to Galicia? It's upsetting to realize the things that might happen.

But Kiev started this war....the Donbass people didn't start it.

EddieGrey1967USA 27 Jan 2015 15:05

Ukraine is facing total disaster now, kind of like a sinking ship. It's economy is destroyed, and it is losing a war so badly that all of Ukraine may eventually be conquered by the rebels.

Ukrainian military casualties are roughly 3,500 killed in action, and another 9,000 wounded. That is shocking. Kiev is trying to hide the magnitude of the disaster from its own people, but Ukrainian citizens are becoming aware of the horrible battle losses. Entire villages in Ukraine are reportedly ignoring Kiev's draft notices.

For historicians, social scientists, and economists, Ukraine is a classic case of a nation in defeat. The experts are observing Ukraine closely as it disintegrates.

All of this would have been avoided if only the Euromaidan government consisted of reasonable people.

[Jan 28, 2015] Doubt everything – Ukrainian students warning to Russian counterparts

Guardian reprints RFE aka Radio F*ck Europe. Well done Guardian. Saves money. From comments: "Rubbish. The most dangerous squirrel-brains are perched at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and at the State Dept. building not far away. It was they who inflamed the Kiev putsch and now may be wondering if the Pandora's box they opened is tough to control."
Notable quotes:
"... as well as the electromagnetic spectrum and information space ..."
Jan 28, 2015 | The Guardian

axiomparadigm -> MrBepec 28 Jan 2015 19:59

A pity I had to ask a Russian speaking friend to tell me the ist of it and he said there are cries for Bandeira... So it is a right wing nazi supporting rally.

Walter Potocki 28 Jan 2015 19:47

Take a cooky from Nuland and march to eastern front, empire will give you a postmortem medal.

Sehome -> alpamysh 28 Jan 2015 19:42

Rubbish. The most dangerous squirrel-brains are perchjed at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and at the State Dept. building not far away. It was they who inflamed the Kiev putsch and now may be wondering if the Pandora's box they opened is tough to control.

yataki -> yataki 28 Jan 2015 19:30

...and they are saying that Yanukovich was a 'dictator'. Oh, excuse me, no matter how corrupted he was, he was a democratically elected president legally recognized by the international community. Even Vic Nuland admitted that. You people could have voted him out of the office, but you preferred an armed coup. You can disagree with me, but to me and many people around the world, it was clearly a violent coup led by the far-right. There was nothing heroic about it.

yataki 28 Jan 2015 19:17

"Check what you hear, doubt what you see."
I suggest these bright young people should first check what they hear from their own government, and seriously doubt what they see. One should never stop checking and doubting his/her own government. There is nothing wrong about that.
Would be interested to see Russian students' answer to that sort of cheap propaganda.

BunglyPete 28 Jan 2015 18:26

If and when the truth behind this gets out the fallout could be massive.

US, EU and many top western officials on board, an entirely complicit media, and we are talking about actual nazis actually killing civilians on the doorstep of actual Europe, and looking at war with Russia.

If if it gets enough attention this could cause a big impact across the globe. Interesting times.

centerline 28 Jan 2015 18:23

The video goes on to counter claims from Russian-state media that the Euromaidan protests in Kiev were a US funded coup.

Full Spectrum Dominance. Part of the US military doctrine.

Full spectrum dominance includes the physical battlespace; air, surface and sub-surface as well as the electromagnetic spectrum and information space. Control implies that freedom of opposition force assets to exploit the battlespace is wholly constrained.

https://www.princeton.edu/~achaney/tmve/wiki100k/docs/Full-spectrum_dominance.html

unended 28 Jan 2015 18:18

From the article:

It also accuses pro-Russian separatists of forcing many in Crimea "at gunpoint" to vote in favour of joining Russia.

From the Pew Research Center:

Crimean residents are almost universally positive toward Russia. At least nine-in-ten have confidence in Putin (93%) and say Russia is playing a positive role in Crimea (92%). Confidence in Obama is almost negligible at 4%, and just 2% think the U.S. is having a good influence on the way things are going on the Crimean peninsula. . . .

For their part, Crimeans seem content with their annexation by Russia. Overwhelming majorities say the March 16th referendum was free and fair (91%) and that the government in Kyiv ought to recognize the results of the vote (88%).p> http://www.pewglobal.org/2014/05/08/despite-concerns-about-governance-ukrainians-want-to-remain-one-country/

I wonder what would make these western Ukrainian students think that about Crimea? Could it have something to do with having been subjected to "rampant propaganda"?

Manolo Torres 28 Jan 2015 17:57

And from where did this students get this idea? Perhaps From their own ministry of truth?

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/dec/19/-sp-ukraine-new-ministry-truth-undermines-battle-for-democracy

Was it a US initiative?

Ukraine freedom support act.
Expanded Broadcasting in Former Soviet Republics:
Mandates the Chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors to submit a plan and cost estimate to increase Russian-language broadcasting into countries of the former Soviet Union funded by the United States in order to counter Russian propaganda

Is it perhaps just another youtube video operatio