About That Batumi Miracle…

Uncle Volodya says, "Honesty may be the best policy, but it's important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy."

Uncle Volodya says, “Honesty may be the best policy, but it’s important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy.”

Hey, remember back when Al Jazeera was the object of loathing and fear in the USA? Bankrolled by the Emir of Qatar – a thriving democracy in the Middle East whose ruler has been a male member of the Al Thani family since 1850 – Al Jazeera was once described by American media as “a mouthpiece for terrorists”, “anti-Semitic” and “anti-American”. It earned the anti-Semitic tag honestly enough, broadcasting an on-air birthday party organized by Al Jazeera’s Beirut bureau chief for a Lebanese militant convicted of killing four Israelis, including a four-year-old girl. And considering it was the outlet which carried Sheik Qaradawi’s weekly program, “Sharia and Life” and Sheik Qaradawi “extended his Koranic blessing to suicide bombing against American civilians in Iraq”, you could make an argument that it earned the anti-American tag honestly as well.

No more, though – all water under the bridge, let bygones be bygones. The outlet’s managers could not now be more pro-American, as this gushing testimonial to Mikheil Saakashvili’s appointment as Odessa’s governor attests. Penned by former United States Army officer Luke Coffey, it is a progressive tongue bath of Saakashvili that is almost embarrassing to read, kind of like watching a bizarre peep show featuring repugnant sex. Unless you’re an admirer of the former Georgian president, of course, in which case it is only his due as the Caesar Of His Time; render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s.

Coffey pitches a quick little historical vignette, describing how observers and analysts should not be surprised at Poroshenko’s appointment of a foreigner to lead Odessa, since that was de rigeuer back in 1803. Two French noblemen were appointed during this period, the first by Tsar Alexander himself, as governors of Odessa. These appointments join wife selling, tobacco smoke enemas, lobotomy and the Divine Right of Kings as examples of a progressive society, for the period in which they were common.

But when you top that historical precedent with Mikheil Saakashvili’s success in fighting corruption and improving the Georgian economy, why, as Mr. Coffey avers, the appointment “makes perfect sense”.

Mikheil Saakashvili’s success in fighting corruption and improving the Georgian economy; my, yes. Let’s take a look at that. Especially as Mr. Coffey avers that President Poroshenko appointed Misha specifically to clean up corruption in Odessa; you may want to keep an eye on that, see how he’s doing, from time to time. Mr. Coffey must have had an affectionate little smile on his face as he thought about Misha’s charisma, he positively oozes it. And energy, too – he’s engaging, and “has endless amounts of energy”. I think I can explain that last bit, as his increasingly porcine appearance suggests he is living on a diet of candy bars. Corruption-fighting by Cadbury.

Some more licking follows, as Saakashvili is described as a visionary who gravitated to Ukraine because it was the only way he could help the country of his birth that for some unaccountable reason wants to arrest him for corruption and various other allegations. Yes, you heard it here first: “…he understands that the geopolitical reality of the Black Sea means that a secure Odessa is a secure Georgia. For him, this is part of his destiny”. Jesus wept; I don’t know if I can finish this.

Mr. Coffey is fond of statistics to back up his claims, and that’s good. According to him, the Index of Economic Freedom – compiled by a conservative right-wing Washington think tank and an ideological conservative newspaper – just loves Mikheil Saakashvili for how easy he made it to do business in Georgia. And it hardly needs saying that Transparency International – supported by Shell International, Microsoft, Google, BP and General Electric, among others – saw him as a mythic corruption-fighter of epic proportions, like Batman, The Flash and Diogenes all rolled into one charismatic, energetic package.

I wonder what those organizations think of the current Georgian President. He does not seem to get a mention, nor does the government of Bidzina Ivanishvili, who headed the Georgian Dream party that knocked the charismatic corruption-fighting dynamo off his perch. Because Saakashvili’s crime-fighting spree coincided with record unemployment in Georgia: it was 12.6% when he took office, zoomed to nudge 17% under his able command, and was still 15% when he was ignominiously kicked out of office. It’s back down to 12.4% now. But Mikheil Saakashvili is credited with being “the one reason Georgia did not become a failed state”. You can’t see me, but I am doing that fingers-down-the-throat gagging thing.

Similarly, Georgia’s per-capita GDP is currently at a record high. So are monthly wages , which reached their record low in 2007, while Saakashvili was apparently too busy fighting corruption to look after his subjects. Wages in manufacturing – a critical component in national self-sufficiency –  same story: record high at present, record low under the Cadbury Dynamo. So weary from fighting corruption around the clock, it escaped his attention that his Defense Minister had started up an offshore business in his own name which roared from a paltry $8 Million and something USD in turnover in 2009 – the year he started it up – to nearly a Billion in 2012, three years of non-stop, rolling-in-moola corruption right under Saakashvili’s nose. The profits before taxes (taxes, ha, ha) that year amounted to more than $51 Million USD. That year, the per-capita GDP for Georgia – what your average Georgian would have to live on and support his family for a year, adjusted for purchasing power – was $6,322.50 USD.

But don’t let my stage-setting implant any preconceived notions, as we step uncritically and with open minds into the showpiece of Saakashvili’s renaissance of the Georgian economy – The Batumi Miracle.

“[T]he capital city [of the Adjara Region], Batumi, is booming. Foreign Direct Investment is flowing in. Five-star hotels mark the skyline. The old city has been rebuilt and preserved“, enthuses Coffey. Really? You know, I’m coming around to Mr. Coffey’s viewpoint. Mikheil Saakashvili actually is the one reason Georgia did not become a failed state. Because if he had won another term, it would have been. He saved Georgia, by getting thrown out of office.

The roof of the Batumi Trade Center – a Saakashvili project of which he laid the foundation stone himself in 2010collapsed in 2012, doing about 25,000 Lari (about $11,000.00 USD at today’s exchange rate) in damages. Fortunately it happened at night, when the building was empty.

But nothing says Sweet Smell of Saakashvili Success in Batumi – a miracle, if I may be so bold – like the Batumi Technological University. The American Technological University, as some referred to it, since it was built with American money from the Second Compact with the Millennium Challenge Corporation. MCC itself, if you can imagine the cheek, was unconvinced that Saakashvili’s bold plan to build a technological university was a sensible or justifiable expenditure of grant money (some of that Foreign Direct Investment cash that “flowed in”, according to Mr. Coffey). No, they argued (shortsighted fools) that building a technological university would be more likely to benefit privileged families than poor families, that the money would be better spent on addressing systemic failures in higher education, and refused to approve the project.BatumiTower

And this is where Saakashvili proved his worth as a guy who won’t be told “No”. Undaunted by the unseemly quibbling over poor people’s educational opportunities, he played the wild card that sucked all the air out of the room – our technological university will have the world’s only miniature Ferris Wheel. How do you like me now, bean-counting eggheads?

Of course it did not happen just like that; I have no idea if the Ferris Wheel was Saakasvili’s idea or the architect’s – although Saakashvili would most certainly have seen the designs – and it was not the addition of this feature that swayed the decision. But just imagine it: struggling all day with difficult technological problems, and then the glorious rush of freedom at the end of the academic day – all the students rushing for the roof, shouting “Me first!!” “No, me!!”. And then whirling around and around high above the earth…what a great way to blow American taxpayers’ money!!

Honestly; what kind of lunatic spends that kind of money on a Ferris Wheel on the roof of a technological university, in a country where the average citizen lives on about $6000.00 a year, after being told by the donors it was a stupid idea? The kind of lunatic who would be perfect for fighting corruption in Odessa, obviously.

Saakashvili opened the Batumi Technological University in 2012, just before the Georgian Dream wave rolled over him and swept him away. It was to have its first students in 2013. The incoming government studied the madcap project, and scrapped it. The new government requested proposals for improvements to the higher-education sector – just like MCC had initially suggested – and announced the intent to co-fund successful proposals with $50 million over 20 years. After spending more than $30 Million USD to build it (plus around $90,000.00 USD annually in maintenance in 2012 and 2013, Saakashvili’s ivory tower was sold for $25 Million, to be turned into a hotel.

Where a little Ferris Wheel just might be almost appropriate. Good luck, Odessa. Remember, it’s easy to ride the tiger. The hard part is getting off.

This entry was posted in Corruption, Economy, Education, Europe, Georgia, Government, Investment, Saakashvili, Ukraine and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2,224 Responses to About That Batumi Miracle…

  1. Northern Srar says:

    Then:
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories/april/18/newsid_2909000/2909881.stm

    Now: Qui tacet consentire videture….Throughout the civilized West…

  2. Moscow Exile says:

    Борьба с пьянством в ВСУ
    The struggle against alcoholism in the Ukraine armed forces

    Rough translation:

    Hi everybody! On air now a transmission about the Animal World. Gathered in the cage are examples of the species Homo Soldatus Alcoholicus. Fucking shameful!

  3. Moscow Exile says:

    Banderite demonstrates the degree of independence that he believes his Greater Galicia enjoys:

  4. ucgsblog says:

    Alright Jen, by posting the picture of stormtroopers as Ukraine’s paramilitary, you asked for this 😛

    Rebel: Governor Saakashvili, I should have expected to find you holding Yats’ leash. I recognized your foul stench when I was brought on board.

    Saakashvili: Charming to the last. You don’t know how hard I found it signing the order to terminate your life!

    Rebel: I surprised you had the courage to take the responsibility yourself!

    Saakashvili: dear Rebel, before your execution I would like you to be my guest at a ceremony that will make our armed forces operational. No star system will dare oppose the Empire now.

    Rebel: The more you tighten your grip, Saakashvili, the more Russian speaking Oblasts will slip through your fingers.

    Saakashvili: Not after we demonstrate the power of our ability to bullshit. In a way, you have determined the choice of the region that’ll be bullshitted about first. Since you are reluctant to provide us with the location of the Rebel base, I have chosen to test this station’s destructive power… on your home of Donetsk and Lugansk

    Rebel: No!

    Saakashvili: You would prefer another target? A military target? Then name the region… I grow tired of asking this. So it’ll be the last time. Where is the Russian army?

    Rebel: They’re in Crimea and South Ossetia

    Saakashvili: There. You see Yats, the Rebels can be reasonable…

  5. Northern Star says:

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/06/26/us-tunisia-security-idUSKBN0P61F020150626
    Wonder how some -who post here-would reconcile this with their avowed political/racial standpoint(s)..????

    • ThatJ says:

      Be more specific, I don’t get your point. In what way does this tragedy negate my views on the role of culture, race and heredity for building and maintaining an advanced civilization?

      Anglo-Zionist meddling has led to an increase in violence and, due to the existence of modern weapons, an increase in deaths as well. But Muslims have been at war with each other (and with kaffirs) for centuries.

  6. et Al says:

    APee via Huffpist: Explosion At Mosque In Kuwait City Kills 27, More Than 200 Injured
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/26/kuwait-bomb_n_7669840.html

    A suicide bomber purportedly from an Islamic State affiliate unleashed the first terrorist attack in Kuwait in more than two decades on Friday, killing at least 27 people and wounding scores more in a bombing that targeted Shiite worshippers after midday prayers….

    …A posting on a Twitter account known to belong to the IS affiliate that calls itself the Najd Province, claimed the explosion was the work of a suicide bomber. It was the third attack in five weeks to be claimed by Najd Province – a name that’s a reference to the central region of Saudi Arabia. The upstart IS branch had claimed two prior attacks on Shiite mosques in Saudi Arabia that killed 26 people in late May…
    ####

    Terrorism is coming home! The Gulf is on it way to eating itself with all the evil it has been exporting for decades. Good news for I-ran & Russia.

  7. yalensis says:

    Are we still in the thread about funny uniforms?

    Okay, I found this piece about the funniest army uniforms in the world.

  8. dany8538 says:

    ME, this is for you . Love this song.

  9. Patient Observer says:

    This is big:
    http://rt.com/news/270046-greece-debt-deal-referendum/
    “The Greek PM has announced a national referendum on July 5 on the conditions of the debt deal with international creditors. It’s up to the Greek people, Tsipras said, to make a fateful decision on the country’s sovereignty, independence and future.

    “These proposals, which clearly violate the European rules and the basic rights to work, equality and dignity show that the purpose of some of the partners and institutions was not a viable agreement for all parties, but possibly the humiliation of an entire people,” Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said in a televised address to the nation, as cited by Reuters.

    The referendum will be held on July 5, a few days past the June 30 deadline, Tsipras announced. ”

    A clever move – what can EU do if the debt deal is voted down? Putin-like in its directness and effectiveness.

    • yalensis says:

      Hallelujah!

      And holding the referendum just a week from now is smart too.
      EU/USA don’t have enough time to organize election fraud.

      • Patient Observer says:

        Latest update:
        http://rt.com/news/269026-greece-bank-debt-crisis/
        My favorite line from the above story:
        “4:53 GMT: AFP reports the Eurozone officials have formally rejected Greece’s application for a bailout extension. The talks are said to continue without Greece. ”
        Talks to continue without Greece?

        A Greek exit may start the unraveling of the EU (and NATO?). What will follow – Germany as the dominant power in Europe with no EU fig leaf to hide behind? Will countries uneasy about the 4th Reich align with Russia/China/BRICs? Is the US ready to start WW III to stop the otherwise inevitable loss of its world hegemony? How can Putin/Russia stop this juggernaut of psychotics?

        • yalensis says:

          “This is the birthplace of democracy. We are a sovereign country and will not be told what question to pose in this referendum,” Tsipras reportedly said in conversation with Merkel and Hollande.

          YES! YES ! YES!

          • yalensis says:

            Or maybe I mean “NO NO NO!” or whatever the answer to the question is.
            Anything that gets Greece out of this horribly abusive relationship!

      • marknesop says:

        Pretty much Lukashenko’s reasoning when the USA tried to colour-revolutionize Belarus. Lukashenko called snap elections, which he won handily.

  10. kat kan says:

    Today, June 26, is the birthday of Alexander Zakharchenko.

    He’s only 39. Life begins at 40. Next stop President??

  11. ThatJ says:

    Trump for President? — Paul Craig Roberts

    Perhaps it has occurred to you as it has to me that the United States is no longer capable of producing political leadership. In the current issue of Trends Journal, Gerald Celente describes the eight candidates (at the time he went to press) for the US presidential nomination as “Liars, cowards, freaks & fools.”

    Celente put it well. If you look at the sorry collection that aspires to be the CEO of what continues to be described as the “exceptional, indispensable, most important country with the largest economy and military, the world’s only Superpower, the Uni-power,” you see a collection of nobodies. America is like the last days of Rome when contenting factions fought to put their puppet on the throne.

    There is no known politician in America who measures up to Vladimir Putin’s ankle, or to the knee of China’s leaders, or to the waist of Ecuador’s, Bolivia’s, Venezuela’s, Argentina’s, Brazil’s, or to the chests of India’s and South Africa’s.

    In Europe, the UK, Australia, and Canada, the natural leaders are also frozen out of the corrupt system.

    In the US, “leadership” positions depend on financial support from the ruling economic interests. American presidents and politicians represent about six powerful private interest groups and no one else.

    After Celente went to press, Donald Trump announced to much mirth. A “con man” they say, but what else is the President of the United States? Do you think you weren’t conned by Clinton, George W. Bush, and Obama? What universe do you live in?

    In actual fact, Trump might be our best candidate to date. By all accounts, he is very rich. Thus, he doesn’t need the office in order to become rich by selling out America to interest groups.

    By all accounts, Trump has a healthy ego. Thus, he could be capable of standing up to the powerful interest groups that generally determine the governance of the American serfs.

    Trump’s ego might even be strong enough for him to stand up to the Israel Lobby, something my former colleague, Admiral Thomas Moorer, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said publicly that no American President was capable of doing.

    Full text: http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2015/06/20/trump-president-paul-craig-roberts/

    Guest Column by Vladimir Putin

    […]

    Charlie Rose: What are the acceptable borders for Ukraine, for Russia? What borders do you find acceptable?

    Vladimir Putin: What do you mean when you speak of borders: geographical borders, political borders?

    Charlie Rose: Political borders.

    Vladimir Putin: Regarding cooperation, we have always said and continue to say – there is nothing new here – that with all the current difficulties, I have always thought that Russians and Ukrainians are one people, one ethnic group, at least; each with their own peculiarities and cultural characteristics, but with a common history, a common culture and common spiritual roots. Whatever happens, in the long run Russia and Ukraine are doomed to a common future.

    Full text: http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2015/06/23/guest-column-vladimir-putin-3/

    US Pushes Russia Towards War — Guest Column by Margaret Kimberley

    Paul Craig Roberts

    The neoconservatives will not be satisfied until they have brought about nuclear armageddon. Not long ago I asked in a column, “Are you ready for nuclear war?”
    You had better be, because Washington is bringing it closer. Indeed, as Europe’s politicians are complicit in Washington’s aggression against Russia, Europeans are preparing their own demise.

    Now Obama’s deputy secretary of defense has accused Russia of playing with fire while Washington is busy lighting the fuse for World War III.

    US Pushes Russia Towards War

    Guest Column by Margaret Kimberley

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article42245.htm

    King World News Interviews PCR — Greek Default Could Cancel World War III

    http://kingworldnews.com/paul-craig-roberts-warns-greek-government-may-be-assassinated-in-this-crisis-if-they-pivot-east-to-stop-world-war-iii/

    • Northern Star says:

      http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/donald-trump-entering-2016-presidential-race-article-1.2259706
      Remember… Trump is a New Yawk guy…born ,bred and raised there….
      Your matinee idol gets ZERO respect from the New York media…
      Only a fellow kindred spirit CLOWN would think that “The Donald” has any credibility…
      Ummmm…One more thing..his daughter’s ‘ Lounge bimbo vamp’ look (IMO) is soooooooo 80s…

    • marknesop says:

      That’s actually pretty sad, because I have seen the same excuse given for the election of Petro Poroshenko – Ukrainians reason that because he is already stinking rich, he will not steal from the country. When have you ever known a rich man who had enough? Even Rockefeller, on being asked “How much money is enough?” is reported to have said “Just a little more”.

  12. Moscow Exile says:

    Fascists?

    Neo-Nazis?

    Where?

    From a Russian blog:

    Украинские неонацисты из батальона-полка “Азов”. Предлагаем взглянуть на фотографии, распространяемые самими героями в социальных сетях. Напомним, “Азов” официально признан. Вместе с этими “героями”.

    Ukrainian neo-Nazis from the battalion-regiment “Azov”. We suggest that you look at the photos distributed by these very same heroes in social networks. Recall that “Azov” has been oficially recognized, as well as its “heroes”.

    Итого, по последней информации от ополчения, мы имеем следующие данные об этническом составе “хэроэв” из полка “Азов”: древние укры, русские, хорваты, чеченцы, таджик (вероятно, татарин, воевавший три недели за ИГ), парочка грузин, один неидентифицированный прибалт, канадец, норвежец, белорусские змагары, ну и, конечно, шведы. НС-интернационал. Понаехали. Ну ничего, Донбасский чернозем непривередлив.

    In total, according to the latest information from the militia, data as regards the ethnic composition of the “Azov” regiment “heroes” is as follows : Ancient Ukries, Russians, Croats, Chechens, a Tajik (probably a Tatar, who fought for three weeks), a couple of Georgians, one unidentified person from the Baltic states, a Canadian, a Norwegian, Belarusian opposition cretins, and, of course, Swedes. The National Socialist-international. They come in large numbers. Well, nothing to be worried about. The Donbass black-earth isn’t choosy.

  13. Moscow Exile says:

    The man who would be tsar, with his mother. She claims to be a Romanov Grand Duchess and to have inherited the right to be the surviving head of the Romanov dynasty. She’s a bullshiitter of the first order and is no “Grand Duchess, but whatever: the Deputy of the Legislative Assembly of the Leningrad oblast, Vladimir Petrov, has proposed that the so-called heirs of the house of Romanov return to Russia from Europe and settle in any empty Palace in the Northern capital or the Crimea. In his opinion, this would be “a symbol of the revival of the spiritual power of the peoples of Russia”.

    To quote the letter of the deputy to the “Princess”, who lives in Madrid and is the divorcée of someone who claimed to be King of Prussia, albeit there has been no such country since 1945 and no such king since 1918, and whose son, she believes, is the rightful tsar (he cannot speak Russian):

    “Your Imperial Highness Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna! Throughout the history of its reign, the Imperial dynasty of the Romanovs was a one of the foundations of Russian statehood… now comes the difficult process of restoring Russia’s greatness and the return of its world influence”.

    What a Wally!

    She’s part Georgian by the way.

    • Moscow Exile says:

      Perhaps the tsar-claimant is related to this headbanger:

      http://imgcdn1.luxnet.ua/tv24/resources/photos/news/610x344_DIR/201506/581349.jpg?201506085202

      Who knows? It could be one of Misha’s dastardly plots to gain revenge on the Evil One: from Tbilisi to Odessa to Moscow ……

        • yalensis says:

          If she is descended from Bagration, then she would not be remotely related to Saakashvili.
          You can tell just from the names.

          -vili names are pure Kartvelian tribe, if I am not mistaken.

          • Jen says:

            I think I read somewhere that Bagration was originally an Armenian name. A variation of Bagration is Bagratiuni and names ending in -iuni are definitely aristocratic Armenian names.

            When I look at that photo of the wannabe Tsar and the would-be Queen Mother (or whatever the Russian equivalent would be), why do I think the young fellow would probably be head of state in name only and the real power his beaming Imelda Marcos clone mum?

            • yalensis says:

              Because he looks like he just exited the Drones Club, along with Bertie Wooster, both in inebriated state?

    • Moscow Exile says:

      “Maria Vladimirovna was born in Madrid, the only child of Grand Duke Vladimir Kirillovich of Russia, Head of the Imperial Family of Russia and titular Emperor of Russia, and Princess Leonida Bagration-Mukhrani of Georgian-Polish parentage. Her paternal grandparents were Grand Duke Kirill Vladimirovich of Russia and Grand Duchess Victoria Fyodorovna (néePrincess Victoria Melita of Edinburgh and Saxe-Coburg-Gotha). Her godfather was Prince Nicholas of Romania and as a godmother Queen Ioanna of Bulgaria. Maria was educated in Madrid and Paris, before spending a few terms at Oxford University, where she studied Russian history and literature” – Wiki.

      She was married to Prince Franz Wilhelm of Prussia, her third cousin, once-removed.

      Prussia has not existed since 1945 and the Prussian monarchy since 1918.

      Her father, Vladimir Kirillovich, was considered by some to be the last male dynast of the Romanov family.When he died on 21 April 1992, Maria claimed to have succeeded him as head of the Russian Imperial Family, though this was disputed by Prince Nicholas Romanovich, a male-line great-great-grandson of Tsar Nicholas I who also claimed to have succeeded Vladimir.

      The claimant in question is NOT a “Grand Duchess”.

      According to Alexander III’s 1885-86 Ukase, the titles Grand Duke/Grand Duchess were only granted to sons and daughters of a reigning emperor, grandsons and granddaughters of a reigning emperor, or great-grandsons and great-granddaughters of a reigning Emperor with the style of Imperial Highness. Maria Vladimirovna does not qualify for she is a descendant of Alexander II’s younger son Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich, who was never a reigning emperor.

      Her grandfather Kirill Vladimirovich broke the law when he contracted a marriage with his first cousin Princess Victoria Melita of Edinburgh & of Saxe-Coburg & Gotha without permission from the Sovereign Emperor. This went against the Russian Imperial House Laws, for the couple were first cousins: she being daughter to Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna; he being son to Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich. Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna and Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich were siblings, both being children of Tsar Alexander II.

      The Russian Orthodox church forbids first cousin marriage.

      There are no more Grand Dukes or Grand Duchesses presently alive in Russia.

      Russia is a republic.

      The last Grand Duke of Russia was Andrei Vladimirovich, the son of Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich, who died in 1956, and brother to the pretender, Kirill Vladimirovich, Grand Duke of Russia.

      The last of the Grand Duchesses were Olga Alexandrovna, daughter of Alexander III, and Maria Feodorovna, who died in 1960 and who was the youngest sister of the murdered Emperor Nicholas II and the last legitimate Russian Grand Duchess to die. Nicholas II’s Grand Duchess daughters all died in 1918, of course.

      Those who now claim to be Grand Dukes and Duchesses of Russia are either living in a fantasy world of their own or are on the make or both.

  14. yalensis says:

    In more Saakashvili news:

    Another Ukrainian official fired after run-in with The Cravativore.
    In this case, it’s a guy named Denis Antoniuk, who is (or rather, was) Head of Aviation Service for Ukrainian government.

    Attached (to story) video shows Saak having altercation with Antoniuk. Antoniuk is first spotted around 2:05 minutes in, when the shaky hand-held camera finally pans over to his direction, where he is seated at the end of the table.
    Saak verbally abuses him for a while, accuses him of corruption and serving oligarchic interests (of aviation market). Saak rants the following words:
    “I am interested in people being able to fly round trips cheaper. When a single company gets all the flights, then people cannot fly cheaply. By making your decision [to award flights to a single company?], you have insured that Odessa will get 2 or 3 times fewer tourists.
    “I am confident, that very soon, the corrupted interests which dictated your decision, this actual monopolist, because nobody here receives a salary [??]. You receive salaries from specific individuals. How much do you make?”

    Antoniuk repllies, that he makes 5500 hryvnas (=14,200 rubles).
    “And you live on this salary? How many tickets to Odessa could you buy with these 5500 hryvnas? Or maybe you never fly anywhere – I don’t believe that!”

    Antoniuk responds with: “Stop talking trash.”

    Saak bursts out in temper tantrum, screaming the following:
    “I won’t take that from a man who just sold out his government service to oligarchic interests! I will not tolerate accusations that I am talking trash!”

    Saak gets so angry, that his face turns red, like a porterhouse steak. He pounds his hand on the table. His blood pressure visibly rises.
    Everybody else in the board room just sits there, with poker faces.

    Antoniuk suggests to Saak: “Come and visit me at home, you will see how modestly I live.”
    Saak refuses, and boasts: “I work day and night.” (3:30 minutes)
    Antoniuk smirks at him.
    Saak rants on, then storms out of the room, followed by one of his Gruzian goons.

    Final result: Poroshenko took Saak’s side in this debate, and sacked Antoniuk.

    • yalensis says:

      And here is some valuable background info on the underlying issues of this particular conflict:

      The verbal exchange between Saakashvili and Antoniuk took place at a session of a special committee, convened to decide on bids for flights. The 2 aviation companies competing for the flights are:
      (1) AtlasJet, which appears to be a Turkish airliner; and
      (2) MAU/<a href="http://dniproavia.com/en/"Dniproavia (both companies belonging to Kolomoisky)

      Before the vote of the committee, Antoniuk (who was Head of Government Aviation) asked Saakashvili to speak his opinion. Saak demurred at first, but then exploded in rage, accusing Antoniuk of serving some oligarch’s interests, presumably Kolomoisky.

      As noted, the result of this entire exchange, was Antoniuk’s dismissal from his post.
      (Even though, when you watch the video, he is a lot more reasonable than the enraged Saakashvili.)

    • Patient Observer says:

      Sorry, stopped reading after “The Cravativore”. too funny! Perhaps the sequel to Jurassic Park.

      • yalensis says:

        Hi, Patient Observer.
        I cannot take credit for “Cravativore”, that was all Jen!

        However, I DO have a suitable musical accompaniment to your Jurassic Park meme.
        It isn’t Grand Opera, but it is equally funny!

    • marknesop says:

      He was probably put in that position to eliminate people Porky doesn’t like, as well as his obvious value as an irritant to Moscow. It’s true, though, that he works day and night – when he was King of Georgia, he left the lights on outside the Presidential Palace all night long just in case he needed to pop out to Starbucks for a double-double moo-juice half-caf slivovitz beefsteak latte to keep himself awake so he could continue working hard for the people of Georgia, and refused to turn them off when Ivanishvili asked him to.

      A touching narrative that Saakashvili “stamped out corruption” in Georgia prevails despite a good deal of evidence that it was merely a contrived dog-and-pony show for western backers. “Stamped-out corruption” was not what the EU Special Adviser on Constitutional and Legal Reform and Human Rights in Georgia, Thomas Hammarberg, found when he visited in 2013, not long before Saakasvili’s status as High Priest of Everything Georgian came to an abrupt terminus. Please note the report was addressed to Lady Catherine Ashton, who would have dropped her linen for Saakashvili at the snap of his fingers – evident in the lack of attention the report received as far as we can guess by the degree of censure applied to Saakashvili. In public, at least, and we must presume from Leddy Ashton’s vociferous and verbose criticism of leaders like Vladimir Putin that she believes public criticism is the way to go. Hammarberg’s staff found (1) “…the independence of the judiciary was undermined by a lack of checks and balances. They noted a concentration of power within the judiciary itself-particularly to the High Council of Justice (HCJ) and its Chairman…continued concerns about unequal opportunities for the sides, putting the prosecution in a much better position than the defence.” (2) According to Human Rights Watch, courts ordered in 2010 alone “administrative imprisonment” for 3,097 offenders.” (3) “According to an NGO report, the courts have for years systematically applied pre-trial detention or bail in pre-trial hearings rather than less severe measures foreseen by the criminal code.This has been the practice even in cases involving mere petty crimes. The same report noted that in the absolute majority of the cases, the decisions repeated the text of the Prosecutor’s motion word for word.” (4) After the 2012 October election, several thousand citizens filed complaints. More than 1 000 persons claimed that prosecutors had played a central role in the illegal seizure of their property, forcing them to “donate” their real estate to the State. From 2004 till 2012, around 9,500 private properties were according to the Prosecutor’s Office handed over to the State for free, causing ground for concern about possible coercion having been exerted against those who purportedly donated their properties “voluntarily”.

      An inordinate number of citizens seemed eager to give their business over to the state. I recommend those who are truly concerned about fairness and transparency (which lets Leddy Ashton out, irrespective that she is no longer in the position anyway) keep an eye out for similar behaviour in Odessa. And there was plenty more of the same in the report. A bloated tie-eating leopard does not change his spots.

      The more the west supports Porky and his Nazi, criminal road show, the worse it looks for them, and their stubborn determination in supporting his crony government amounts to an endorsement of his complete lack of principle.

  15. yalensis says:

    Armenian Maidan?
    This hasn’t been covered much in Western press.
    I have been following somewhat, in Russian press.
    My timeline is a bit vague, but over the past couple of weeks or so, anti-Russian color revolution has been developing in Armenia.

    Here is one piece, from today:
    http://www.kp.ru/daily/26398/3275459/

    The basic gist seems to be:
    True to form, pro-European and anti-Russian interests have looked for some issue to spark Armenian color revolution. The goal apparently is to get rid of the current government, which is considered too pro-Russian.

    The pretext: A raise in utility rates for use of electricity. Which is very weak pretense, since, as correspondent points out, Armenians still pay only around $50 (equivalent) per year for all their electricity.

    This issue was used as excuse to bring the pro-Western youth out onto the streets of Yerevan, along with all the usual nonsense. And pretty clear that the usual NGO’s have been preparing this for quite some time, and just waiting for their moment.

    As the KP correspondent points out, the protests have not yet turned violent. The people involved are sensitive to accusations that they are inspired by Ukrainian Maidan. At one point, there WERE some Ukie activists out there, waving Ukie flag, and all. But this was quickly covered up, as the Armenian throngs of youthful activists innocently protest that they are just peaceful demonstrators concerned about utility rates.

    Pretty clear, though, that this IS a Maidan, just not yet in its violent phase.
    In above piece, correspondent notes ironically that even the “cookies” are there: local oligarch Khachatur Sukiasian was out in the streets literally handing out cookies to the demonstrators.

  16. et Al says:

    About those sanctions on Russia:

    FlightGlobal: Virgin Galactic wins first satellite launch contract
    http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/virgin-galactic-wins-first-satellite-launch-contract-414046/

    The deal – which includes another 100 options – is with UK-based OneWeb, which plans to orbit 900 Airbus Defence & Space-built microsatellites of less than 150kg (331lb) each, to provide affordable broadband internet to rural areas around the world from 2019.

    Most units will be launched by Arianespace on 65 Soyuz flights from Kourou, French Guiana and Baikonur, Kazakhstan – with each rocket capable of deploying about 36 satellites. The LauncherOne flights will put one to three of the satellites into low-Earth polar orbit, with a focus on filling in any gaps in the constellation.

    Soyuz flights will start in 2018, and OneWeb also has taken options on flights on Ariane 6, the European heavy-lifter being developed by Airbus and Safran to replace Ariane 5 from 2020….

    • Patient Observer says:

      Pie in the Sky project but not because of the sanctions certainly. I believe that Google as well as other have similar plans for mass satellite constellations .

      The bigger question is the impact of global wireless internet access. Its not just to increase youtube access to funny cat videos or porn distribution (or is it?). Porn without borders, Yahoo for Africans!

      These global projects may be really intended to weaken cultural/regional/national identity to facilitate assimilation into a mass techno-peasantry unknowingly ruled by the 0.0001% Lords and Ladies. Just saying.

      • et Al says:

        I wonder about that too. When we see big fat fiberoptic trunks being deployed to Africa and tech like WiMax which has quite a long range and more data being squeezed than ever over legacy copper connections, then I don’t really see how this satellite plan works out as you have to keep on renewing them with expensive rocket launches. Despite the comparative lack of internet connectivity in Africa, they’ve been able to send money and pay for services by gsm for quite a few years already now, even without smart phones.

      • marknesop says:

        Well, the days when they just gave stuff away are long over, and when you get something now that looks like a great deal it’s because they want access.

  17. Patient Observer says:

    Did we expect anything less?
    http://rt.com/news/251889-us-russia-war-attrition/
    Apparently things went sour with Russia when:
    ” US diplomats say Russia changed the cooperative stance it assumed after the collapse of the Soviet Union and is now using force to defend its national interests, the paper said. The change is attributed to the personality of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who, Washington expects, will remain in power until at least 2024.

    The change became apparent with the conflict in Ukraine, but was emerging since at least the 2008 conflict in South Ossetia, when Russia used military force after Georgia sent its army to subdue the rebellious region, killing Russian peacekeepers in the process.

    Washington’s solution to the new Russia is keeping sanctions pressure on it while luring its neighbors away with economic aid and investment, La Stampa said. The current round of sanctions, it reports, was designed not to have too much impact on the Russian economy so that a threat of harsher sanctions could be applied. ”

    Very fiendish plan indeed except for one small problem – the US economy is floating in the toilet and the Russians and the Chinese are about to pull the lever via dedollarization. Oh well.

    • kirill says:

      The western media produces nothing but propaganda. The US stages a coup in Ukraine and then has its quislings launch a war of terror in the Donbas where at least 25,000 civilians are dead as a direct, intended result but all we hear is about Putin and his aggression. What sick, delusional shit for “analysis”. By helping Donbas residents defend themselves from an obvious ethnic cleansing attempt, Russia is the “aggressor”. This is pure 1984 newspeak in action.

      The US is going off the deep end because its economy is going to collapse. All the offshoring of jobs has a price. The trickle down economy of merchant resale of Chinese imports can’t really substitute for the original economy since all the good jobs lost.

    • marknesop says:

      Yeah, right. We were just kidding about sanctions – those were just the kiddie sanctions. We were hoping not to have to do the real ones.

      In actuality, the USA poured on as much leverage as it could get away with, without its European partners screaming like girl scouts who see a snake. The U.S. government knows that what you need is momentum, so a good hard punch to start things off and then you just wade in swinging until your man goes down. If they didn’t follow that pattern it’s because they couldn’t, not because they didn’t want to or felt merciful.

      • ThatJ says:

        I agree, the sanctions were no joking matter. The US targeted the energy, arms and finance industries in a single blow after Russia didn’t “cooperate”.

        • marknesop says:

          Precisely. They meant to make Russia stagger, and then to keep up the momentum until it fell over. Not to say they could not have imposed worse sanctions, but not without directly and visibly affecting European economies as well, to a degree the European public would not tolerate. Worse sanctions are just bluster – the effort has failed, and keeping the campfire-girls sanctions they have already in effect will constitute a long-term benefit to Russia and long-term damage to the EU, as Russia establishes other markets. Brand loyalty only lasts until customers find something else they like.

          • kirill says:

            The really hilarious thing is that it was the US and its propaganda factory media that undermined the sanctions long before they were ever implemented. They scared off investment in Russia and Russian investment in the west. So all the pain they were expecting from “cutting Russia off” never happened. The west is truly led by retards.

          • astabada says:

            but not without directly and visibly affecting European economies as well, to a degree the European public would not tolerate.

            This is, incidentally, the reason why the US badly needs an open Russian intervention in Ukraine.

            Let’s remember once again that the first round of sanctions was passed on the aftermath of MH17. A round of tougher ones would require a bigger tragedy still.

  18. Moscow Exile says:

    Further to what drutten wrote above about that maniac Lucas, see this story from Patrick Armstrong in Russia Insider:

    Flash!!! Daily Mail Makes Stunning Geographical Discovery, which article has been sourced by “security expert” Lucas.

    • et Al says:

      From the Daily (Epic) Fail article:

      …A poll showed one in three Swedes think the country should join NATO..

      So despite all the hysteria, only a third want to join NATO. Is this higher or lower than before etc???

      • Moscow Exile says:

        I reckon the general opinion in Sweden as regards not joining military alliances has been pretty stable for the past 200 years. Armed neutrality has worked out well for the Swedes, I think. They had had enough of imperial ambition in the 18th century and did well in keeping on the sidelines during the Napoleonic wars, albeit that to do so they had to accept a French general as their king and they lost Finland to the Russian empire. I think the only military action the Swedes have taken part in since the Congress of Vienna returned Europe to the status quo ante bellum in 1815 was her attempt to coerce the independence-minded Norwegians back into the fold.

        I lived in Sweden for a few months in the ’80s. Rather liked the place. I was in the sticks, though, not in any large city. I became rather partial to the cod roe that they sold in outsize toothpast-tube dispensers and with which they used to squeeze out the delicacy on toast at breakfast time. And they used to sell elk at the IKEA cafes as well. Very tasty!

  19. et Al says:

    So, has anybody else notice the almost entire absence of criticizm of Azerbadjan throughout the recent European Games there in Baku? It turned out that the Germans couldn’t help themselves. Did you hear about this? I didn’t:

    RT: West’s snub of Baku European Games reminiscent of Sochi
    http://rt.com/op-edge/270118-baku-games-european-sochi/

    …But let’s start with the description of the facts about the anti-Games campaign in the West. One day before the start of the European Games in Baku, the German Bundestag deemed it appropriate to come out with a special resolution, prohibiting top-ranking German officials from visiting the event. The poor state of human rights in Azerbaijan was cited as the reason for this “timely” resolution.

    The resolution unleashed a storm of protest in Azerbaijan. The start of the Games is the main event of the decade for this young nation, which had only 2.5 years to prepare for it. A call by Bundestag and several Western-supported human rights activists to boycott the Games was seen as a direct insult by many. The Azerbaijanis living in Europe even started a special action “against attempts to ignore the Games” by displaying the national flag on their homes. …

    …So, the ambassador of Germany was summoned to the Azerbaijani foreign ministry and presented with an official protest. An aide to the President of Azerbaijan, Ali Khasanov, denounced the “campaign” in the Western media against the Games and his country in general, noting that a lot of Western articles in defense of “human rights activists” repeated and mirrored each other. “The organizers of this campaign will not achieve their aim – to turn Azerbaijan away from its independent foreign policy line,” Khasanov said…

    …Here is another quote from the Bundestag’s resolution which actually makes a direct link between the campaign against the European Games in Azerbaijan and the campaign against the Olympic Games in Sochi: “There is a widespread opinion among representatives of the sports organizations and unions, that having sports events on territories of certain countries can give a push to the democratization of these host countries,” the Bundestag’s resolution says. “But the experience of the recent years demonstrates that these expectations are not realized. The summer Olympic Games in Beijing in 2008 or the winter games in Sochi in 2014 – these games did not lead to an improvement of the human rights situation. Their effect was the exact opposite to the desired one.”…
    ####

    Not that I have any time for Aliyev, but the reason most of it was covered by silence (save the Bundestag apparently) was just to hid the West’s stunning hypocrisy and maybe with an eye on the fact that TAP is supposed to be filled with Azeri gas. Or do they think that I-ranian gas is going to come through much more quickly when the nuclear deal is sealed?

    • marknesop says:

      Yes, I was going to say that it must be a coincidence Germany is the European state that does not have a worry in the world about its gas supply, and could care less if Overactive-Imagination Stream ever gets built by the EU.

      I-ranian gas; that makes me laugh, too – the lengths to which the west will go in order to not buy gas from Putin, in the name of “energy security”. They could wheel out the dessicated corpse of Ghengis Khan with casters on his heels, make him CEO of Not-Putin Energy Systems, and the west would line up to buy at half again the price of Russian gas. If Moscow were really as smart as they think they are, they’d be creating a fictitious energy company in some other state that had a concealed pipeline to Gazprom, and sell “energy-independent” gas to the west at a higher price, while moaning in public about what a shitkicking the EU was giving them and how Gazprom is going broke without their business. Give the rubes what they want and expect, and they never check. Just remember, it was my idea.

      You know, I used to scoff at the notion Russia could split Germany off from the EU. But every once in awhile, it doesn’t seem so crazy.

  20. yalensis says:

    Les Misanthropes…
    New contest to see who can identify the characters in this color revolution!

    http://rusvesna.su/sites/default/files/styles/orign_wm/public/cvetnye_revolyucii.jpg?itok=YYEczp6j

    I’ll start with the “Le Gamin” – that adorable street urchin on the right:
    None other than Viktor Dioxinovich Yushchenko!

  21. yalensis says:

    This is exciting!
    Valentina Lisitsa posted her entire Donbass concert on youtube:

    • Northern Star says:

      Is the 22.VI.1941 displayed on the forefront of the dais a reference to Barbarossa??
      On second thought….What else could it be….

      • yalensis says:

        Yes. All Soviet people remember June 22, 1941 as the “Day of Sorrow and Remembrace”.

        Lisistsa was brilliant in her concert. I could tell by watching, that she was nervous at first. Just a momentous occasion, and so much at stake. But she is one of these natural troopers, nervousness and emotion does not affect her performance, except to enhance.

        Near the end, When Zakharchenko speaks, and the veterans stand at the front of the stage, and then the choir along with Lisitsa perform the “Buchenwald Bell” song – so emotional!

        People like Karl who say Donbass residents should just surrender to the junta – they don’t understand what stuff Russian people are made of. But Lisitsa understands.

  22. ucgsblog says:

    Greetings from the Kremlin Stooge’s favorite Californian investor. Turns out that the whole reason behind Saakashvili’s 20 year quote was that he couldn’t find anything in Odessa that’s worth stealing, so now, rumor is that he wants out. Real investors, (it’s why I had so much fun with Curt from Seattle,) are avoiding Ukraine like the plague and Saakashvili’s displeasure simply makes avoiding Ukraine all the more likely. Essentially, Ukraine is becoming a giant Kosovo. If only someone could predict that… https://ucgsblog.wordpress.com/2014/11/23/uzhe-pozno-a-u-vas-eshe-serrano/ (November 23rd, 2014)

    “With the CU membership no longer an option for all of Ukraine, the question becomes “what’s going to happen?” Russia’s economy will persevere, Ukraine’s won’t. Who’s going to pay as a result of the explosion of Ukraine’s economy? The austerity-driven EU? The massively-in-debt US? There’s absolutely no solution for Western Ukraine. An attempt was made to integrate it with the EU, and said attempt failed, because the wrong tools were used. The EU/US simply do not have the right financial tools and Russia isn’t in a giving mood. My guess is that NovoRossiya will secede due to economic necessities, Western Ukraine will be dumped on the EU and end up a massive version of EULEX, which in turn could lead to the collapse of the European Union… The break up of Ukraine is inevitable. The sooner Ukraine breaks up, the less devastating the collapse will be. Unfortunately, Neoliberals will simply delay the outcome until the ticking time bomb explodes. I wouldn’t recommend that option, but I wouldn’t recommend using a saw to fix an ice rink either. Not even if it was an electric one.”

    EULEX is the failed EU administration that’s overseeing Kosovo. Speaking of Kosovo, have you guys heard about Hungary’s wall? Well it turns out that people want to leave a mafia ruled statelet, and the Serbs are providing Kosovo Albanians with a gateway to Europe through Hungary. Hence the wall. If you’re not too close to it, it’s quite entertaining to note how the EU finally figured out a way to make Serbs and Albanians work together.

    • kirill says:

      The retards running NATO were actually hoping that Russians, being the soft saps that they are, would keep on welfare giving to their “brothers”. These retarded fucks forgot to tell their minions to not oppress and murder Russians. Now they can eat shit together with their minions.

  23. ThatJ says:

    For those who don’t believe that Facebook and other American internet giants are in the business of serving US government interests:

    https://www.facebook.com/celebratepride

    This is not some user’s community or app. It’s Facebook’s own feature, implemented by the company itself.

    This is soft power projection. Facebook is a political tool of the US government. To think that they don’t spy for their government, when blatant partisanship is at full display, is foolish.

    Facebook, the business, welcomes the judicial tyranny of the US Supreme Cout. A sexual identity whose generalization among humanity would lead to its demise has been normalized as an alternative — a third way, if you will.

    And don’t tell me that people “are born this way”. There are many stories of parents who later in life have come out, only because of the media and government push of the homo agenda. With this decision, the people who are prone to sexual confusion may start coming out, and we will witness a substantial growth in open manifestations of homosexuality. The problem with the gays is that they have (or will have) a hostile attitude towards the rest of society who do not support their deviant behavior (as a result of culture-induced neurosis and/or paranoia). We can expect them to push homosexuality into schools, into the TV, quotas for gay workers, laws against “hate speech” (i.e. people who preach the normalcy of heterosexuality), forcing religious communities to submit to gay dictates and other laws that only a gay or a Jewish Bolshevik can muster. Gays form a very radical core of the Bolshevik activists. One of the first things that Stalin did in the 30s was to purge Bolshevism from Soviet life, to Trotsky’s lamentation.

    Normalizing the homosexual practice is counter-evolutionary to the extreme. This decision signals the overall decline of the culture (an important pillar of a successful civilization) and the government of the US, and the West in general.

    Recently Kardashian’s stepfather “came out of the closet”. Not only that, he’s a transvestite now. He had children prior to coming out. If he was a young adult today, it is unlikely that he would have married a woman. This decision both impacts the overall number of open gays and the fertility of the people under this hostile elite’s umbrella.

    Glenn Wilson on Homosexuality and the Brain:

    There are many people who seem to be physically normal representatives of one sex or the other but who prefer sexual contact with members of their own sex. Increased tolerance of this behaviour in recent decades has led some people to argue that no theoretical explanation of homosexuality is called for, any more than one needs to ‘explain’ heterosexuality. To the evolutionary theorist this is nonsense; heterosexuality has obvious survival benefits while homosexuality does not, so the latter is bound to arouse more scientific curiosity and demand special explanation.

    (Full text in the link)

    • yalensis says:

      Dear ThatJ:
      Is one to assume that you are a fully functioning heterosexual male?
      And if so, is there a Mrs. ThatJ?

    • yalensis says:

      P.S. – I don’t think Mark Zuckerberg is nearly as evil (in the sense of shilling for the U.S. government) as the Google folks are.
      My opinion of Zuckerberg went up a notch a few weeks back when he and his minions publicly laughed at Poroshenko and defended Russian ethnics against Ukie hate speech:

      • yalensis says:

        P.S. I really like that Zuckerberg addresses this issue (=hate speech) straight on, without any weasling around. This is Facebook’s policy, if you want to be on Facebook, you have to abide by it – boom! He talks about Russians and Ukrainians and ethnic conflict straight out, no weasling there either – boom!

        People who want to post ethnic hate speech should probably switch from Facebook and join the Russian social community of “V Kontakte”. Ironically (according to people who believe there is no free speech in Russia), the Russian version has no speech restrictions whatsoever. As evidenced by the fact that they host pages of Vita Zaverukha and Curt Doolittle, and the likes of them!

        • Eric says:

          Doolittle surely cant actually communicate in Russian though, can he/it?
          I thought it was obvious from the postings

          • yalensis says:

            That’s true. Curt mentioned that he speaks little if no Ukrainian or Russian.

            But this doesn’t stop Curt from being active on V Kontakte, where he communicates in English. If you scroll down to the bottom of the page, you see that they let you pick your language.
            Hence, in theory, “V Kontakte” could compete with Facebook in any country of the world. In practice, as far as I know, they are only popular in Russia and Ukraine.
            My original point was that “V Kontakte”, in contrast to Facebook, allows hate speech and does not seem to censor anything. I don’t know if that’s a good thing, or a bad thing!

          • Moscow Exile says:

            I’m sure he said he speaks Russan but has of yet not mastered Ukrainian, which he intends to do so. I wrote something exceedingly vulgar to him in Russian and he did not respond, though in truth he never responded to any of my comments, which I found very hurtful – I really did.

            • Moscow Exile says:

              Curt Doolitlte says:
              June 16, 2015 at 12:30 am
              When the USA wanted to prevent another stock market bubble and crash after the great depression, they hired Kennedy (father of our dead president), who had been a master of it.

              People follow incentives. Our incentives are lustration: to purge endemic Russian corruption from our country. These people share our incentives. And they are specialists in their fields.

              –Slava Ukraine–

              Reply
              Pavlo Svolochenko says:
              June 16, 2015 at 12:33 am
              It’s Slava Ukraini you berk.

              Speak the damned peasant language if you’re going to play at being a Khokhol.

              Reply
              Curt Doolitlte says:
              June 16, 2015 at 12:36 am
              Unfortunately I don’t have control over the auto-correct. And my Ukrainian is worse than my Russian. But I don’t have a lot of need for peasant languages. I mean, analogies to farm animals only take you so far in life.
              —————————————————————————————————————-
              So it all depends on how bad he considers his Russian is.

              Interestingly, he seems to concede that Ukrainian is a “peasant language”, though he might not have realized he was, in fact, doing so.

              • Moscow Exile says:

                I reckon his command of Russian is limited to: Сколько для отсоса?

                After stating:

                It would be fun to ask what people think of Russia and Russians here in Ukraine. Becuase I know what they tell me. They hate them for conquering them, oppressing them, committing genocide against them, ruining their revolution, invading their country, murdering their people, all because Russian government is afraid of a similar revolution against corruption there. They hate Russians.

                You can tell the people from the east who have moved here: they’re trailer trash.

                Though I should add that I do not doubt that is probably what most tell him about Russians in Lemberg, Doolittle never answered this question that I asked him:

                А хули ты тут пиздишь? Откуда ты знаешь мнение каждого украинца, уёбок? Еблан блядь.

                [What the devil are you talking about, old chap? How can you know the opinion of every Ukrainian, you silly fellow? You seem to have had your wits knocked out of your silly head.]

            • marknesop says:

              He actually said “my Ukrainian is even worse than my Russian”. I don’t believe he speaks either beyond the tourist level.

    • spartacus says:

      “And don’t tell me that people “are born this way”. There are…”

      Well, these people say that their study shows that the genes play a significant role in determining one’s sexual orientation…

      http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayAbstract?aid=9625997&fileId=S0033291714002451

      I find it rather sad, that cultures that were considered barbaric at the time of their discovery showed a higher degree of understanding for people who were born different…

      http://www.firstpeople.us/articles/the-two-spirit-people-of-indigenous-north-americans.html

      Apparently, some of the modern, civilized and educated people of today seem incapable of making the same effort.

      “Gays form a very radical core of the Bolshevik activists.”

      I’m sorry, but do you really live on this planet? How many gay activists you know identify themselves as Marxists? How many pictures of Marx, Engels or Lenin do you see during gay parades? Have you ever read what Marx, Engels, Lenin or Trotsky actually wrote?

      Let me give you a clue: Marx never focused his critique on gay rights, animal rights, environmental issues or whatever stuff today’s “Left” keeps itself busy with. His entire work was dedicated to exposing the inner workings of the Capitalist mode of production, of its underlining property relations, pointing out its weaknesses and to show that, precisely because of its shortcomings, it can’t be the highest and final mode of production human society can create.

      The “Counter-Currents” piece you linked wants to make people believe that Stalin rejected Marxism all together and in order to show that, it cites various critiques of Stalin’s policies made by Trotsky et al. Well, papers, like these two linked below, seem to point in the opposite direction:

      1. http://www.jstor.org/stable/20099624?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents

      2. http://www.kentlaw.edu/perritt/courses/seminar/white-final-Seminar%20Paper.pdf

      Of course there were disagreements between Stalin, Lenin and Trotsky. Lenin was worried that Stalin’s increasingly autocratic rule was undermining the achievements of the October Revolution. Trotsky was very critical of the so called “Socialism in one country” policy that was seen by many Bolsheviks as a retreat from the objectives of the Revolution. But Stalin, unlike, let’s say, Hitler, was never a Capitalist. He did not return USSR to Capitalism and he did not pursue an imperialist policy comparable to the one pursued by the Nazi Germany or by the US, for example. If you like to go on and on about how Stalin opposed the Zionists how about the fact that the state of Israel may have never existed without his help:

      http://www.amnation.com/vfr/archives/001808.html

      Does this show that Stalin was a Zionist? You tell me…

      In the end, who was right after all? Stalin, who supported Israel thinking that it may lead to the creation of a friendly, maybe even Socialist, state that would help USSR gain a foothold in the Middle East, or Trotsky, who had this to say about Zionism:

      “Before trying to answer your questions I ought to warn you that unfortunately I have not had the opportunity to learn the Jewish language, which moreover has been developed only since I became an adult. I have not had, and I do not have the possibility of following the Jewish press, which prevents me from giving a precise opinion on the different aspects of so important and tragic a problem. I cannot therefore claim any special authority in replying to your questions. Nevertheless I am going to try and say what I think about it.

      During my youth I rather leaned toward the prognosis that the Jews of different countries would be assimilated and that the Jewish question would thus disappear in a quasi-automatic fashion. The historical development of the last quarter of a century has not confirmed this perspective. Decaying capitalism has everywhere swung over to an exacerbated nationalism, one part of which is anti-semitism. The Jewish question has loomed largest in the most highly developed capitalist country of Europe, in Germany.

      On the other hand the Jews of different countries have created their press and developed the Yiddish language as an instrument adapted to modern-culture. One must therefore reckon with the fact that the Jewish nation will maintain itself for an entire epoch to come. Now the nation cannot normally exist without a common territory. Zionism springs from this very idea. But the facts of every passing day demonstrate to us that Zionism is incapable of resolving the Jewish question. The conflict between the Jews and Arabs in Palestine acquires a more and more tragic and more and more menacing character. I do not at all believe that the Jewish question can be resolved within the framework of rotting capitalism and under the control of British imperialism.”

      As a take away, in case you missed it: “Decaying capitalism has everywhere swung over to an exacerbated nationalism, one part of which is anti-semitism.” I would say that he was right on the money with this one…

      • yalensis says:

        Dear Spartacus:

        Great comment! Of course, debunking ThatJ is like shooting a fish in a barrel. He just takes everything in this world that HE doesn’t like (which is just about everything), lumps it all together into one shapeless blob, then shoots darts at it, making up “facts” as he goes along.

        Anyhow, I don’t think that Marx, Lenin, Trotsky or Stalin had much if anything to say about the gay issue. They did write a lot about the women’s issue, but they didn’t connect women or femininity with homosexuality, as far as I know. They probably just never thought about homosexuality all that much; maybe they never encountered it, and if they did, they wouldn’t have thought it had anything to do with the class struggle. Which it really doesn’t, except as maybe sidebar to women’s emancipation issue, which they (Marx, et al.) did indeed connect with the class struggle. Although, again, they were more concerned with women as producers than as sexual objects.

        As if on cue, I just happened to read this piece today in the Russian press. Basically, it’s about a Russian Senator named Konstantin Dobrynin, who has called on the Russian government and media to tone down its anti-gay “campaign” and try to lower the level of homophobia in current Russian society.

        And sure enough, the vast majority of the comments to the article, not to mention the crude attacks against Dobrynin, prove his point, as you can imagine!

        • spartacus says:

          Thanks, yalensis! The way I see it, any major leftist revolution, like the Bolshevik Revolution, for example, had a hard anti-capitalist core and some additional, satellite, movements that got themselves attached to this central, hard core. Those additional movements were composed, in a lesser or greater degree, depending on the ideology of the movement, from various oppressed minorities that found an opportunity to voice their grievances with society and attach their claims to the core objectives of the revolution. It is quite possible that, because of their status as oppressed minorities, Jewish people, gay people, atheists, feminists and so on, would be more inclined to side with the socialist revolution, than with the capitalist state.

          My criticism of leftist movements of today is that, over the years, they have dropped the hard anti-capitalist core, hollowing the movement and in doing so they have in fact sold out the working class they were supposed to represent and helped the capitalist states to advance their agenda at the expense of the workers. They keep focusing on gay rights, animal rights and environmental issues but completely ignore the capitalist elephant in the room. As a side note, I was talking to a vegan friend (now ex-friend) of mine, convinced animal rights activist, who kept mentioning that my meat eating habits are favouring the meat industry. I tried to point out to her that the horrible treatment of animals going on within those enterprises generically called CAFOs (Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations) is a by-product of the capitalist’s drive for profits. Remove the profit incentive and you may start looking for more humane alternatives until science can provide the human race with a suitable replacement. Furthermore, I tried to explain her that agriculture is not done by philanthropists, but by businessmen in search for profits. For them the pollution of rivers, deforestation and GMO induced disease are mere “negative externalities”. She is representative of the left movement today who thinks capitalism is super, needing only minor adjustments here and there: less greed, gay and animal rights and a little more environmental responsibility and it will be just fine. TINA, really! Losing the connection with the hard Marxist anti-capitalist core has put the leftist ideals at the mercy of people like ThatJ who have a field day in presenting what initially were satellite movements of the anti-capitalist core as the core of the revolution itself. From there, it only takes one more step towards trying to present the October Revolution as a Zionist plot, powered by atheist Jews and gay people. Thank god for Stalin, who managed to put a stop to this devilish madness!

          As a side note, while rummaging through the internet, I found this book:

          http://www.amazon.com/Trading-With-Enemy-Charles-Higham/dp/044019055X

          I managed to find some chapters and it looks like an interesting read, exposing how the American capitalists had no qualms about doing business with Nazi Germany. None whatsoever…

          • yalensis says:

            Dear Spartacus:
            I totally agree, and all I can add is “oi veh!” I guess all this hippy-dippy onsense started with the “New Left” in the 1960’s, and then it just went downhill from there.

            As far as I am concerned, if a person is NOT anti-capitalist, then they should not be allowed to call themselves a “leftist”. No many how many stray cats they have saved from the shelter! Any time they call themself a “leftist”, they should slapped on the face with a wet noodle.

            Furthermore, in this world of confusion that we live in, I think we have to fight for clarification of terminology. For example:

            Leftist = anti-capitalist
            (but not necessarily revolutionary. For example, a trade unionist can be a leftist, but not want to overthrow the system; just get a bigger slice of it)

            Variants of Leftist: socialists, communists; (within communists there are Trotskyites, Stalinists, and Maoists, etc.)

            Liberal = pro-capitalist, but want to tweak the system to be more inviting to minorities
            Conversative = pro-capitalist, but want to tweak the system to be less inviting to minorities.

            (and so on…)

            As for ThatJ, I would categorize him as pro-capitalist, and with a racist-eugenist philosophy. He sometimes comes off as anti-capitalist, but only because he believes that Jews are behind all the big money in the world. In this sense, he is the exactly the same as Hitler.

      • yalensis says:

        This comment also for Spartacus, due to our shared interest in Bolshevik history:

        I read this piece in Cassad yesterday. I was quite shocked and disappointed (because I like Cassad’s blog and read him just about every day), that he actually conflated Trotsky with a Banderite fascist.

        Now, I actually get along okay with Stalinists, but I don’t like it when they do that sort of thing. It’s like a throwback to 1936 and all the unfair things that were said about the Old Bolsheviks.

        It’s dishonest and shows a malevolent intent, IMHO. Like you mentioned in your comment above, the Bolsheviks had lots of politics going on, there were continuous debates and polemics between Lenin-Trotsky-Stalin. None of which should have led to actual murder or political assassination, since, in the larger sense, they were all on the same side.

        Anyhow, this is the context of Cassad’s (what I consider inexcusable) remark.
        I don’t remember if you said you read Russian or not, probably not, but here is the basic summary:

        Cassad brings this up in a P.S. to his main blogpost, which is about Khrushchev’s “gift” of Crimea to Ukraine. In an unrelated “P.S. #2”, Cassad says this:

        PS2. И еще одна хорошая новость. Под Смоленском откроют памятник руководителю отдела спецопераций НКВД Павлу Судоплатову http://dima-piterski.livejournal.com/295432.html, который занимался устранением врагов Советской Власти, приложив свою мозолистую руку к ликвидации Льва Троцкого и Евгения Коновальца.

        TRANSLATION:
        PS2. Another bit of good news. Near Smolensk they are going to erect a monument to the leader of the NKVD Special Ops, Pavel Sudoplatov, who was in charge of liquidating enemies of Soviet power; having applied his workman-like hands to the liquidation of Lev Trotsky and Evgeny Konovalets.
        END OF TRANSLATION

        And then goes on to brag about killing Trotsky with the icepick and so on….

        Yevhen Konovalets was a Ukrainian nationalist leader and agent of German fascism. According to Sudoplatov, Stalin had told him, “This is not just an act of revenge, although Konovalets is an agent of German fascism. Our goal is to behead the movement of Ukrainian fascism on the eve of the war and force these gangsters to annihilate each other in a struggle for power.”

        To see Konovalets mentioned side by side with Trotsky, both as “enemies of the Soviet state” in unfair and totally blurs the class line, IMHO. Since Konovalets was an agent of German fascism, and Trotsky was a Marxist revolutionary. Two completely different sides of the class line.

        I don’t even have a problem with Sudoplatov getting a monument built to him. Like I said, I get along perfectly okay with Stalinists.
        But to see Cassad engage in such a cheap shot against Trotsky… that bugs me!

        • spartacus says:

          Yeap, I also noticed that Cassad is something of Stalin fan boy, so to speak…and yes you are right. Putting Trotsky in the same pot with Konovalets is just wrong. I also think that Trotsky’s contribution to the Revolution is significant. I think that even Lenin thought so…

      • ThatJ says:

        @yalensis

        The article did not use the word homophobia, and correctly so. Being opposed to a sexual identity that is counter-evolutionary is not an unnatural/unfounded fear, on the contrary.

        It is sad that Konstantin Dobrynin is parroting Western lies that the common gay in Russia is suffering aggression. If anything, most people are not bothered with them, except maybe finding their behavior funny, and I can recall a video recorded in Russia where two policemen laughed at a gay after he was out of view. The insatiable homo activists, on the other hand, may indeed bring the fury of many a Russian upon them.

        The most upvoted comment reads thusly, via Yandex Translate:

        Why, if a man thinks he’s a Martian or Napoleon, he is treated, and if he thinks he’s a woman, then his rights are protected?

        In what world does this sort of comment prove Dobrynin’s point? Is common sense among Russians a bad thing? Should Russians emulate the figures favored by the West, such as Pussy Riot? It did not escape my observation that the West supports mental cases and condemns supporters of common sense, who are always pathologized in some manner.

        The bigots of France protested massively against the state approval of a counter-evolutionary sexual identity, now officially defined as being “equal” to heterosexual relationships, equal being equivalent to “interchangeable”, meaning that there is zero effects on the society if everyone married people of the same gender:

        Homo activists are among the stormtroopers of the New Left movement (American-variety of Jewish bolshevism), and Churchill, who sold out later in life, was spot on in identifying both the string-pullers/agitators and the perils presented to civilization by their ideology:

        “This movement among the Jews is not new. From the days of Spartacus-Weishaupt to those of Karl Marx, and down to Trotsky (Russia), Bela Kun (Hungary), Rosa Luxembourg (Germany), and Emma Goldman (United States)… this worldwide conspiracy for the overthrow of civilisation and for the reconstitution of society on the basis of arrested development, of envious malevolence, and impossible equality, has been steadily growing. It has been the mainspring of every subversive movement during the 19th century; and now at last this band of extraordinary personalities from the underworld of the great cities of Europe and America have gripped the Russian people by the hair of their heads and have become practically the undisputed masters of that enormous empire.”
        Writing on ‘Zionism versus Bolshevism’ in the Illustrated Sunday Herald, February 1920

        • spartacus says:

          “The article did not use the word homophobia, and correctly so. Being opposed to a sexual identity that is counter-evolutionary is not an unnatural/unfounded fear, on the contrary.”

          I’m all in favor of gay men. You should be too. The more the better. More women for us, heteros… In fact, starting tomorrow, I will try to persuade all my male friends to go gay so I can have a shot at their wives. Sounds like a plan, don’t you think?

          By the way, looking at those pictures from gay parades you posted, I failed to see any participants holding posters of Trotsky, Lenin and/or Marx. Where do you think they were hiding them? And did you see that guy with the pink umbrella? Such Zionist scum…

          • marknesop says:

            I never thought of it that way, but perhaps I should have done. Well, certainly not too late, because Pride Week just kicked off in Victoria. Do you like our new crosswwalks? I heard that men who walk on them turn gay right away.

            • spartacus says:

              Yes, these crosswalks are certainly more visible and they are a good idea, as long as the women are prevented from using them. That would seriously mess up my plan…

        • yalensis says:

          Dear ThatJ:
          Churchill was drunk when he wrote that nonsense about Jews and Zionists.
          He was drunk AND ugly.
          When he woke up the following morning, he had a hangover, and he looked in the mirror, and saw that he was still pug-ugly.

  24. ThatJ says:

    BREAKING NEWS: Greek Parliament Authorizes July 5 Bailout Referendum

    As an equal member of the EU, Greece does not need to ask permissions from anyone to let the Greek people speak and have their voices heard, PM Tsipras told his parliament, promising that the state’s sovereignty and future will be decided via referendum.

    […]

    The conditions for a new bailout deal and reforms proposed by Greece’s creditors were an ultimatum and an insult, Tsipras said. During the rowdy debate in the Greek Parliament, the main opposition party, New Democracy, briefly walked out over a dispute with the parliamentary speaker, but later returned.

    http://rt.com/news/270187-greece-parliament-debt-referendum/

    [ThatJ: The “BREAKING NEWS” headline is different to the article title. I chose the former.]

    • ucgsblog says:

      The integrity of the Euro area? “Greece is and should remain euro area member,” Tusk tweeted after eurozone finance ministers refused to extend the bailout agreement on Saturday, adding he remains “in contact with leaders to ensure integrity of euro area of 19 countries.”

      Looks like Europe also has The Donald. I had no idea that currencies had integrity, I thought that currencies just had value based on their exchange for gold. I’m not talking about the gold standard, I’m talking about it taking X dollars to buy Z pounds of gold and Y rubles to buy Z pounds of gold, ergo X dollars = Y rubles. But apparently the Euro has integrity. Is it territorial? Is it silvery and buggy? Props to anyone who gets those references. (Both of them, since first one’s easy.)

      The Referendum – that’s going to be really interesting. Of course we can see the EU’s commitment to democracy: “The EU Council President Donald Tusk also warned that Athens must stay within the single currency zone no mater what the outcome of the referendum might be.”

      He should’ve just said: “It’s democracy, only if we like the result!”

      • Fern says:

        Yes, were the situation not so tragic for the Greeks, it’s been comedy gold watching EU officials struggling with the concept of democracy in action – people actually being consulted on how the government should deal with the issue of the country’s debts.

        Make no mistake, however, the EU and IMF are determined to crush Syriza at whatever cost – it’s absolutely essential pour encourages les autres. Waiting in the wings are Spain, Italy, Portugal, possibly France etc, etc. If you can end austerity by voting to do so, well, isn’t that a terrifying situation for the 1%? As someone once wisely said, ‘if voting changed anything, they’d abolish it’.

        • ucgsblog says:

          And then the people might get used to it! In California, they tried to impose austerity, but we’ve had the Referendum Process for a while, (I think since the 1960s,) no one’s really talking about austerity anymore. And thing is, we fight back and we fight back viciously. If you go against the process, for whatever reason, the donations to your election/campaign/policy making PAC will drop next election cycle.

          Just ask Carmen Trutanich, we’ve killed off his political career, so he has plenty of time to respond. He shut down OWS, and that was “meh’ish”. But then he went a step further and tried to financially bully OWS participants, against the wishes of the voters. Big mistake Carmen, so when elections rolled around, we paid him back. He lost… in the primaries, despite having the governor campaign for him and being extremely well connected, to a minority female democrat and a Republican. In California. In the primaries. Did I mention that it was in the primaries?

          So in my state, where the Referendum is well established, you do NOT go against Referendum. Just ask Meg Whitman, or Carly Fiorina, or… you get the picture. So I understand why the EUcrats are terrified of the Referendum, and why they might cave to SYRIZA before it goes through.

          • marknesop says:

            Speaking of Carly Fiorina, I see she’s running again for 2016. Must be a glutton for punishment. I also note that she’s the only female in the line-up, of both declared and potential candidates.

            • ucgsblog says:

              She’s doing it to see if she can get a job at one of the lobbying agencies after the race. A lot of candidates run in order to get jobs at think tanks, speaking arrangements, etc.

              If she attracts enough votes, they might hire her as a “consultant”, and then she can be paid Ponomaryev’s “speaking fees”.

  25. Fern says:

    A very interesting article on the situation in Armenia. I don’t agree with everything the writer says but much of it is spot-on:

    Novices to political science and political activism may be lured by the spectre and spectacle of the Color Revolution method that has characterized ostensible movements for radical social change in the last generation.  The symbols have become iconic and clichéd: the tent city, the die-in, the girl placing flowers in the gendarme’s gun barrels, water cannons and tear-gas, the fist flag.  

    What is missing of course from this view is an understanding of the real social forces in a society, class and economic forces.  For forty years, genuine activism, labor union militancy, has been marginalized.  In place of direct action against the ruling class at the very places that make their wealth, is a strange simulation of late 1960’s student activism; shown to us on a never-ending film reel loop.

    http://fortruss.blogspot.co.uk/2015/06/electric-yerevan-and-lessons-on-color.html

    Many of the analysts I’ve read on Armenia – including those quoted above – seem to think it unlikely that this new Maidan will succeed. I’m not so sure. Once it has its hooks into a country, the US is loathe to let go.

    • marknesop says:

      Like sanctions, the colour revolutions depend on momentum – getting it, and maintaining it by incremental pressure until the government folds up like a lawn chair. Governments have learned from the Orange Revolution not to let a revolutionary camp get established, and as soon as they see tents they get torn down; if people do not have shelter in which to sleep so they can stay on location, they quickly fragment and drift away. But no colour revolution ever again reached the intensity of the Orange Revolution. It was up to the western media to create the appearance of momentum by injecting fake news about the government meeting with rebel leaders and filming the crowds from angles and frames which suggest they were much bigger than they actually are. Yanukovych at Maidan is probably the worst possible example, and it gave the west unfounded confidence, because he capitulated in whole in less time than it takes to say it, folding like a steamed tortilla and giving the self-appointed leaders everything they asked for without even putting up a fight. In retrospect, they probably could have sent Tetyana Chornovol in alone to beat him up until he wept for mercy and saved a great deal of effort and expense. But other leaders are tougher and smarter than Yanukovych, and are expecting to be colour-revolutioned. The secret is not to lose your head and start bargaining, because that’s what the model is calculated to make you do.

      • ucgsblog says:

        There’s also Russia releasing all of the tactics used in the Orange Revolution for every country’s government to study. I doubt that there will be a repeat, especially in Armenia.

      • yalensis says:

        The Flores piece that Fern posted makes a really good point, about the difference between REAL activism (e.g., trade union strikes) and fake activism (e.g., student protests, hippie flower children, etc.)

        When a trade union wins a bitter strike and gets a measly raise of, say, $.50 per hour, it is still a significant victory, because the money comes directly out (and in place of) of the capitalist’s profits. As Flores notes, this is “direct action” at the very fountain of where wealth is created. As opposed to student protests, which do nothing to change anything at the base of the economic system.

        But it IS notable that the current bunch of goons in charge of the U.S. government – people like Clinton, Nuland, etc., spent some of their student years in the 1960’s doing various hippie-dippie protests, and the like. So, they are familiar with this method of protest, and use it as a cover for the actual big-power subversion, which they are doing behind the scenes. Subconsciously, they might even believe that “it’s all good”, because they have such fond memories of their own student years spent supporting various “good causes”.

        Oh, and another reason these “hippie-dippie” type protests are popular with a certain type of gilded youth, is because it allows them to indulge in their own physical narcisissm:
        They get to paint their faces, wear funny costumes, show of their “creativity”, preen in front of cameras, etc.
        The sort of thing that many teenagers enjoy doing, but especially the more narcissistic types.

        • Fern says:

          yalensis, yes, I think that’s a really key point – the difference between activism that fundamentally changes or challenges economic relationships in a society and these so-called ‘revolutions’ which in nearly every state have led to the embrace of neo-liberal policies and worsening of the economic situation of many of its citizens. And, of course, it’s a point that’s completely missing from any western MSM analysis of what’s taken place in Ukraine, Georgia and all the other places with colour or flower ‘revolutions’. No questioning at all of why, exactly, the leaders of western countries such as the US or UK are so enthusiastic in supporting these movements abroad when they have done everything possible to destroy or marginalise agents for real change at home.

        • marknesop says:

          Yes, those are very good points. It’s important to remember, though, that protest is often not about money as a strike almost invariably is. Many times it is about government high-handedness, and if the timing is right – close to an election – it is frequently effective and successful in all but autocracies. Despite the maudlin blubbering of the press, there are not actually many of those left, while a surprising number are western allies.

          The single most important factor, though, is the English-speaking press and its spin. All that is important is that a protest actually took place – after that, the numbers are meaningless as the issue itself often is. If the western media is not supportive of the goal, it just doesn’t mention the event – there have been several protests against Poroshenko’s inept bumbling, not great in number because of repression, but that has never been important to the media, they just insert whatever numbers activists give them. When the west supports the goal, it not only makes up the numbers, it gives favourable coverage to the rantings of activists and ignores the government’s stance altogether, putting the standard “the government denies it” unless a government figure has said something contemptuous or derisive, in which case it is used to symbolize the government’s position.

          All they need is an issue, and a protest. It’s all smoke and mirrors from there. And a surprising number believe what they read, unquestioningly. That’s how you can be at a social function with people you think are quite bright and aware, state your position on Russia and have them shake their heads pityingly and tell you Putin is on borrowed time because of broad-based discontent with his rule.

        • ucgsblog says:

          I disagree, I’ve seen students lead powerful movements that are genuine. The key isn’t over who’s doing it, it’s over the demands. The pseudo-revolutionary movements, aka the Maidanuts, can only speak about broad demands, i.e. “end corruption, elect a responsible government, ban the current leaders, etc”. Every single one of their demands fall into two generic categories: “get rid of x” or “demand something that cannot be quantified”. They might throw on a few quantifiable once, but it won’t the majority.

          On the other hand, the genuine protesters are willing to work with the current government and to produce quantifiable demands, i.e. “increase minimum wage to X”, “cap the amount that can be collected by medical insurance companies to Y”, “limit the tax rate at Z”, and so on. Every single demand is specific.

          And that’s the key difference. The Maidanuts are idiots working for someone else, who doesn’t want to be responsible to the locals for specific demands, since the locals are mere pawns in their geopolitical games. You don’t give out specifics to your pawns.

          However, if you are leading a local movement that genuinely cares about the people, you’re going to want to set a range of specific and realistic results that you can reach, so that the people who matter will keep on supporting you.

          Which is why I propose this approach to fight Maidanuts. When they protest, surround them with a larger group of pro-government activists, and get in their face, but don’t provoke or throw punches, only use self defense. Here’s what you say:

          Maidanut: “we want a fair government!”
          Pro-government protester: “what constitutes a fair government? Please be specific, I genuinely want to know!”
          Maidanut: “we want an end to corruption!”
          Pro-government protester: “how are you planning to end it? I want it gone too, let’s work together, let’s no be pawns anymore!”

          And so on…

    • yalensis says:

      It makes sense that U.S. is targeting Armenian government with color revolution.
      Probably to punish Armenia for joining Eurasian Economic Union.

      • Jen says:

        There could be many reasons and Armenia’s entry into the Eurasian Union could be one of them. The US wouldn’t initiate a colour revolution unless it presents an opportunity to kill several birds with one stone. A colour revolution leading to instability or an extremely nationalist government that reignites the Nagorno-Karabakh dispute with Azerbaijan would (supposedly) draw in Russia, to supply Armenia with aid or weapons, and that would open the door to greater US military investment in Azerbaijan on the pretext that Azerbaijan is being threatened. This gives the US an opportunity to go to the next step which would be to plan an invasion of or another Green revolution in Iran next door, or start colour revolutions in Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.

        Also 2016 is the start of a new election cycle in the US and Washington probably needs to get some action going against Russia and/or Iran to deflect public attention away from an uninspiring field of presidential candidates and their lack of meaningful policies.

        • ucgsblog says:

          I had a conversation with a fellow analyst about it, I’ll summarize:

          Me: “Nazarbayev is the best post-Soviet leader!”
          Him: “Eh, he’s a dictator just like all of them.”
          Me: “Oh, I’m sure that he built himself several palaces and gave out “donations” to stay in power, but name another post-Soviet country that made the transition without warfare or economic depression” (Lukashenko fucked up economics in 2009)
          Him: “I see your point”

          If Obama and Co are stupid enough to try that shit in Kazakhstan, I’m going to research on the various types of popcorn out there, because this will be highly entertaining. I just have one question: AMC or Regal?

          As for Kyrgyzstan, they want to be with the SCO, which means with Russia, China and Kazakhstan, as well as Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. AMC or Regal? Which has better popcorn?

      • marknesop says:

        And to continue to pry away the countries surrounding Russia, make them NATO satellites and ring Russia with enemy bases. They laugh every time you suggest that’s what they’re doing, then go right on doing it.

  26. Cortes says:

    http://russia-insider.com/en/israelshamirnet

    interesting piece on Jewish and Israeli approaches to Russia and Ukraine

    • yalensis says:

      Thanks for posting.

      As always, Shamir is very good at breaking down these complicated factors in ethnic politics. He brings more clarity to a muddled mess!

      • yalensis says:

        “The bottom line: Israel remains neutral for its own reasons. While Jews as individuals differ on Ukraine, there is a correlation with their stand on Palestine and on Syria. Enemies of Putin in Russia, Ukraine, Europe and US do support Israel and are hostile to Palestine, to Syria of Bashar, to Venezuela of Chavez. And the most dangerous lot are those who support Israel and Russia, as they are surely plotting some mischief.”

        Brilliant analysis and summary. Shamir breaks this complexity down to a reasonable level, where it could almost be plugged into computer code.
        The key reveal for me, is that the Palestinian issue remains Factor #1 in all of this.
        Ukrainians think it’s all about them, but it’s actually, still, mostly all about Palestine.

  27. et Al says:

    About Estonia’s Russian problem.

    Al Beeb s’Allah GONAD (God’s Own News Agency Direct): Estonia’s Russian Problem
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p02tzvc7

    Neal Razzell reports from the Estonian city of Narva, which is in NATO but almost entirely Russian. Could this be the west’s weak spot? Here, the Estonian government says, Moscow is trying to destabilise it by exploiting local grievances – just as NATO says it did in Ukraine. So Estonia is mounting an urgent campaign to win hearts and minds among its Russian population. Ethnic Russians account for a quarter of all Estonians, and most say their economic prospects are best served by living in the west. But many are also profoundly ambivalent about their identity, culturally and linguistically at odds with the majority, and asking questions about what it means to be an Estonian.
    ####

    This is the Beeb trying to be balanced…. It goes to show how paranoid the native Estonians are and their unchallenged abuse of their Russian minority is suddenly discovered to be counterproductive. Retards. Silence from Brussels and the West for over two decades. Human rights for some.

    The Irony is that yet again, this is about a fundamental disrespect and abuse of minorities and the blind eye turned to this by the West if they are considered untermenschen by the West. This is nothing new. It’s what happened in the former Yugoslavia when the republics broke away not wanting to be a minority in a ‘Serb dominated’ Yugoslavia when they could be a majority in their own, taking special care to abuse and punish their minority Serbs.

    In Slovenia, over 20,000 long term non-slovenian residents were erased from the records, denied any official recognition, but the Jermans still let Slovenia join the EU. I Croatia, exactly the same, but after the West’s biggest ethnic cleansing campaign since World War Two. As for Kosovo, since the constitutional reform of the early 1970s, the Serbs and others there were increasingly victimized with the Albanian authorities doing nothing to stop it. The moment the Serbs said it was enough, the Serbs were fingered solely as the enemy and the root problem.

    It’s rights for some, not for others. Brussels doesn’t give a damn either. Until a couple of years ago, the monitoring of such standards for prospective EU candidate countries stopped once they joined the EU because it was deemed that they had done their homework by the time they joined. What a joke, especially for all the countries from the Balkans and Baltics who joined the EU.

    • Pavlo Svolochenko says:

      Estonia has an Estonian problem.

      Happily, it is solving itself.

    • kirill says:

      As usual the local Russians have no voice. It is evil Russia “agitating” them.

      No western media piece has any honesty or objectivity. There is always spin and preservation of established propaganda narratives.

      • ucgsblog says:

        Except the Daily Show. Their maps were the first ones to show Crimea as part of Russia, see the episode about “Saving Potted Ficus”, which in no way, shape, or form made fun of Kiev’s underfunded military… There’s an American saying Kirill: “I watch news for comedy and Comedy Central for news.” Specifically the Daily Show and the Colbert Report.

        Here’s where the majors stand, IMHO:
        CNN: We love corporations. Anything corporate is good. Ever since Putin let the Russian Middle Class thrive, he’s the de facto Stalinitler.
        Fox News: We love Republicans and Neocons. Neocons, what you say about Russia? Of course you’re right, and we found sooo many WMDs in Iraq!”
        MSNBC: We love Democrats and Neolibs. A Clinton is never wrong. Kosovo is thriving, and Putin is bad. How could he not hand over Ukraine to Obama? The bastard!

        Give me a media channel, and I’ll tell ya where it falls. Example: NY Times: see MSNBC, but with more attempted flair

        • kirill says:

          You are right, the Daily Show was the most objective “news” source in America aside from fringe media. But comedians have always had the freedom and role to critique society. This must be because they are not taken too seriously by the average sheep who can’t reconcile “funny” with “serious” in their limited brain. The sheep turn to “serious” MSM for their information and opinions. I am not trying to make any claim on which people are superior. We can see what happened in Ukraine during the last 20+ years and how they all lap up propaganda and love it. Russians are lucky they got Putin who saved them from the Ukraine trajectory they were on during the 1990s.

          • ucgsblog says:

            Comedy Central viewership’s going up. Fox News viewership’s going down. People aren’t sheep, they’re beginning to understand more and more of what’s going on due to the advent of the Internet.

            And that’s what terrifies Neocons and Neolibs. Numerous Russophilies on the Internet support Putin, precisely because we’re able to get all the facts and debate about them rather harshly. And the facts state that the Moneyball Model of foreign policy, not the current one, is favored by most Americans.

        • ThatJ says:

          @ucgsblog

          It’s not only Fox News viewership that is going down.

          The trend is generalized, and other major TV channels have also lost audience in the last decade.

          I am one among millions who today barely watch TV. I think the internet makes TV irrelevant for a great number of people, moreso to the young such as myself.

          BRUTAL: 50% Decline In TV Viewership Shows Why Your Cable Bill Is So High

          Morgan Stanley analyst Benjamin Swinburne and his team published a fascinating set of charts yesterday about the long, slow decline of old-fashioned broadcast and cable TV, and the number of ad dollars chasing the dinosaur medium.

          There has been a 50 percent collapse in broadcast TV audience ratings since 2002, Swinburne says.

          Are Young People Watching Less TV? (Updated – Q4 2014 Data)

          The latest TV viewing figures are in, and with 4 years’ worth of data to examine, it’s possible to see some real trends emerging in Americans’ TV viewing habits. The short of it? Yes, youth as a whole are watching less TV – and 2014 appears to be the year in which those declines accelerated.

          ThatJ: If you are fixated on your computer, and today, on your computer and smartphone, you don’t have much spare time for TV. All of your information or entertainment needs can be satisfied by the internet. Thankfully, it’s really cheap to put a website online, so people who feel they are not being represented in television can find a community online that shares their views. On the other hand, there’s going to be radicalization around various ideologies.

  28. yalensis says:

    Armenian color revolution:
    As per the Gene Sharp handbook, Armenian demonstrators are starting to hint at violence, in the next phase or protests.
    Armenian media caughts shots of some demonstrators starting to wave wooden clubs.
    Yerevan police chief Valery Osipian communicated, that the police have pictures of the people with the wooden clubs, and intend to find them, as this is illegal.
    Osipian also communicated, that the protesters attempts to set up tents and food service have been thwarted. Setting up food and cooking, in particular, requires permits.

    Is perfectly clear that Armenian authorities know exactly what is happening, and what is going to happen next. Probably the next phase is violence. There were some reports of Ukrainian neo-Nazis being flown in, but possibly there are also violent groups within Armenia who could be used as the shock troops. But police seem to be savvy, and know what to do. Ukrainian police (=Berkut) were defeated only, because Yanukovych lost his nerve and would not allow them to win.

    • Jen says:

      Perhaps if the Armenian government declared that anyone attending the demonstrations would not receive any results from end-of-term or end-of-year exams at school or college, and threaten to order educational authorities to withhold school or university graduation certificates and ceremonies as well, the protests might shrink to just the ringleaders and their more fanatical followers.

      The reason that the Umbrella Revolution faltered in Hong Kong last year was that universities had just reopened after term break and exams were about to start, and the Hong Kong authorities only had to wait out the protests.

      • likbez says:

        Don’t be naïve. As Euromaidan had shown University professors, deans, etc themselves are an important part of fifth column supporting the protests. Departments of Economics and similar “social” departments are especially easy and cheap to seduce by grants, foreign trips, etc. and they have natural neoliberal leanings. In case of Euromaidan it was they who, if not asked students to go to the street, at least granted them “amnesty” from missing the classes. And they operated within the larger framework of staging color revolution, being just one element of complex infrastructure. The same was true in Hong Cong: certain professors actively encouraged the events and served as catalyst for students.

        The start of color revolution means just a switch to active stage of of multifaceted, well prepared ongoing intelligence operation using the accumulated in embassies cash and well organized assets in the country such as NGO, journalists, fifth column within the government, etc. Operation which was prepared for long time..

        Those extras that show up on the streets are mostly a stage for public consumption. Real events of infiltration that make color revolution possible happen on higher level and are hidden from the view. The goal is always to paralyze and neutralize both government and law enforcement by finding people who can be bought, coerced into supporting the coup d’état or at least profess neutrality. And without “breakthrough” in this direction the active stage in which protesters suddenly and en mass appear of the streets is never started.

        Nuland and company probably made serious progress in creating the “color revolution infrastructure” and fifth column within the county elite. They probably are now keeping on short leash some corrupt officials both in law enforcement and government. Cash is now dispensed continuously to grease the wheels. “Militant protestor” in Kiev got around $30- $35 a night. Of course some radical nationalist elements participated “for free” but a lot of extras were paid.

        So start of active phase first of all means the level of maturity and readiness of already formed fifth column within the government to topple the current government. In case of Ukraine it was Lyovochkin and elements within SBU and police (remnants from Yushchenko government), Also Nuland kept Yanukovich by the balls by threating to confiscate his assets in the West. I suspect that in some form this is also true the case in Armenia.

        In other words the key feature of color revolution is “elite betrayal” component. that’s why often the actions of the government in “self-defense” are often contradictory and inefficient..

        • bolasete says:

          as barrington moore noted in ‘Injustice: The Social Bases of Obedience and Revolt’ people rebel, protest, riot from moral outrage. but outrage is an emotion, and like any emotion, it passes. revolutions are made in cold blood by dedicated persons with ice in their veins. this was as true with the bolsheviks as with the maidanites. which is the problem with most ‘journalism’: loose with the facts, heavy with the outrage. when people get pissed off they often demonstrate but it’s the guys in the red shirts who direct it.

        • Jen says:

          @ Likbez: I see what you mean but if the Armenian govt can defuse the street demonstrations first, it can then deal with the people who signed the agreement with ContourGlobal to sell the Vorotan Cascade power stations to that company and demand a full account of the negotiations on the pricing arrangements leading up to the signing. There may need to be a full legal enquiry into this to ensure no laws were broken. While this is going on, the Armenians should also investigate what funding links their universities and colleges have with Washington. As the situation presently stands, Armenia can’t afford to fight on what amounts to three fronts simultaneously.

  29. Fern says:

    Another uh-huh moment; Ukraine is massing troops on the border with Transnistria:

    “It looks like the Kiev authorities  want to picture themselves as encircled by enemies, ready to attack,” a representative of the Transnistrian KGB told Russia’s Zvezda TV channel.

    “That we may have a war here tomorrow is hard to say, but we are not ruling out a Ukrainian provocation either…They could use for this purpose one of their many small private armies which refuse to take any orders from Kiev,” the official added.

    And to raise the uh-huh to the power 10, Georgia’s finest son weighs in:-

    ”The newly appointed governor of Ukraine’s Odessa region Mikheil Saakashvili earlier announced plans to reinforce Ukraine’s border with Transnistria.
    “We have two major tasks — to reinforce the border and curb corruption. Drug and weapons trafficking across this border means nothing good,” Saakashvili told a news conference in Odessa.
    He also blamed the Transnistrian authorities of destabilizing the situation in Ukraine.

    http://sputniknews.com/europe/20150628/1023940592.html

    Yes, I can see that Transnistria which is about as big as a thumb, would be destabilising Ukraine. Makes perfect sense.

    • kirill says:

      No hysterics from Harf and Psaki or whatnot about destabilization? Russia can’t stage a military exercise 1000 km away from the Ukrainian border on its own soil, but is just dandy for the Kiev regime to be massing for invasion? The US is a freak show along with its puppets.

    • kirill says:

      BTW, a Kiev invasion of Transnistria is a clear attempt to force Russia to intervene militarily. NATO failed to produce this via the war of terror on the Donbas and now it wants to do this via the invasion of Transnistria by its puppets.

      • ThatJ says:

        Several pro-Russian sources have stated that Transnistria can be used to force Russia’s hands, an outcome desired by NATO.

        But I fail to see how Donbass and Transnistria can be compared. It would be entirely legitimate for Russia to intervene in Transnistria if her peacekeepers were victims of foreign aggression there. It is known to the world that Transnistria is basically a Russian puppet state, that it only gained semi-independence from Moldova thanks to Russia, and that Russian peacemakers are serving there. The parallels to South Ossetia are various.

        It could trigger a real Russian invasion, and Ukraine could lose half of its territory. It’s dangerous gambling and, known to the West that Georgia’s Saak initiated the aggression in 2008, it is also a disguised blessing to have this man as the head of Odessa.

        • kirill says:

          Any military action by Russia will be spun by the western propaganda machine as “aggression”. Most sheep don’t have enough initiative to know the context. They will lap up whatever the MSM will dish out to them.

          Even with the total absence of Russian forces (of the sort claimed) in the Donbas, the MSM coverage is claiming that there are invasion forces already there. Of course, no shred of proof is provided. But footage of Russian forces in action over Transnistria, which will require “invasion” of Ukraine will be propaganda gold for NATO.

        • marknesop says:

          Yes, that’s a very good point – Russia has legitimate and recognized interests there. However, I can’t help thinking the west realizes it has failed in provoking a Russian attack in the east – and it’s clear it wanted one, since the media campaign pretended for as long as it could that it was already happening – and so is going to up the ante. Russia’s legitimate interests would therefore be downplayed in the western press, while Russian attack would be made to look like the brutal face of Russian aggression, undeniably here at last.

          I’m not saying that would necessarily succeed, but the west – especially the USA – is getting desperate.

  30. et Al says:

    Quelle surprise!

    Al Beeb s’Allah GONAD (God’s Own News Agency Direct): Kuwait Shia mosque attack: Bomber ‘was Saudi’
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-33303795

    …The interior ministry named the bomber as Fahd Suleiman Abdulmohsen al-Qaba’a, according to state media.

    The ministry said he flew into Kuwait on Friday just hours before he detonated explosives at the mosque, killing at least 27 people.

    The Islamic State group – which regards Shia Muslims as heretics – says it was behind the attack…

    …the interior ministry saying initial investigations showed he was a supporter of “extremist and deviant ideology”…
    ####

    Terrorism’s coming home! Kisses, moah moah!

  31. Moscow Exile says:

    Check out the Russians, Belorussians Poles and Ukrainians.

    Remember: Moskali are not Slavs, but dercinated Finno-Ugric-Mongol-Tatars!

    • yalensis says:

      The Lithuanians appear to be the most European of them all.

      That makes sense from a linguistic POV as well, since the Lith language is the one closest to Proto-Indo-European. Both original language and ethnos seem to have survived intact throughout the centuries, with very little admixture!

      • Ilya says:

        Latvians are comparable to the Lithuanians in terms of the completeness of their west Eurasian ancestry; Estonians as well, other than a small Siberian signature. Interestingly, Basque ancestry partitions cleanly into a two parts, hunter-gatherer (green) and neolithic (purple); given their non-IE language, they would appear to be the remnants of when the first farmers entered Europe and merged with the extant hunter-gatherers. Europe is more easily visualized as predominantly Mediterranean (purple) with a smaller amount of hunter-gatherer (green) until subsequent IE movements during the Bronze Age brought large quantities of hunter-gatherer ancestry into the continent from the steppe (and with it, the complete replacement of all pre-IE languages, save for Basque).

      • Jen says:

        I think the dark-green bar labelled North-European-Mesolithic (of which the Finns have the greatest proportion, compared to the other nationalities; British, French, Germans and Swedish have less; and eastern Europeans including Lithuanians have even less again) might be the best indicator of “European indigenous hunter-gatherer” status. That would be consistent with Finland being a refuge for populations coming from the west, south and east of Europe and settling in a mostly forested, swampy environment with 8-month winters and where mostly slash-and-burn agriculture could be practised before more modern technology and industrialisation arrived.

        The pale-green bar labelled North-East-European which all the major European groups have (with Italians having a smaller proportion than everyone else) might represent the Indo-European contribution which may not necessarily be originally European if the Kurgan hypothesis (that the I-E languages originated with a nomad group in the region of Ukraine / southern Russia / central Asia) is the most accurate one accounting for the origins of the mother tongue and its original speakers. After all, “Indo-European” is only a label that purports to show where the languages were spoken before 1492 when Christopher Columbus took off with his three ships to prove a point about China and India being due west.

        Mesolithic and Neolithic populations were more or less contemporary with the former coming just a bit before the latter and the latter finishing just a bit after the former ahead of the Bronze Age, at different times in different parts of the world (consistent with the slow spread of agriculture which defines the Neolithic lifestyle). Mesolithic means people who lived by hunting, gathering and fishing, the major difference between them and their Paleaolithic ancestors being that Mesolithic folks had domesticated dogs, geometrically shaped pointy stone tools that could serve as knives or spear points (known as microliths) and a greater variety of settlement types other than living in caves or sharing sleeping space in trees with leopards, chimps and pythons.

        • Ilya says:

          None of the colours in any ADMIXTURE plot necessarily represent actual populations, as each could in fact be a compound of several populations; it is simply how ADMIXTURE best exhibits the relationships amongst the different populations with the fewest explanatory ancestral components. In fact, an ADMIXTURE plot must be fixed against certain reference populations as poles in order to partition each population amongst the different ancestral components; using a larger or smaller number of reference populations will result in different components appearing as modal in different populations and the ancestral proportions will differ between those populations; using more SNPs is also better than using fewer (the above graphic is based on only ~81k SNPs).

          Notice the red (“West Asian”), which shows up everywhere in Europe and at a conspicuously low level in the Finns. While not on that particular plot, a “West Asian” component that shows up across the IE world (also conspicuously absent in the Basques) is modal in Georgians. And we now know that the Caucasus harbours a lot of ANE (ancestral north Eurasian) of which the Yamnaya were heavily; and we know that the Yamnaya contributed massively to the genetics of the Corded Ware people which has a strong affinity to the Afanasievo samples on the other end of the steppe.

          Massive migration from the steppe was a source for Indo-European languages in Europe

          Population genomics of Bronze Age Eurasia

    • ThatJ says:

      Too bad the graphic doesn’t contain data on Estonians and Latvians.

      Estonian people:

      This is the sub-racial category that most Balts belong to:

      http://www.theapricity.com/snpa/rg-baltid.htm

      The author includes two Russians and a Prussian (General von Hindenburg) in the category. I agree with him, many “ethnic Russians” from Northwestern Russia do have Baltic influence.

    • Cortes says:

      http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/gnxp/2010/02/the-basques-may-not-be-who-we-think-they-are/#.VZCqw3CkqrU

      Not sure if there are genetic markers to predict appearance of gastronomic clubs, but hey?

      • yalensis says:

        Extremely interesting, thanks for posting!
        I found this wiki entry on the Basque language.
        OMG, I hope I never have to learn Basque, it sounds really complicated.

        Just the phonology: looks like there are almost 50 consonantal phonemes – wow! That’s what I call a “consonant-heavy” language. wiki doesn’t say much about the vowels, but I am guessing they don’t need many vowels in such a language. The usual 5 (a-e-i-o-u)would suffice.

        Moving on to the grammar: Says that Basque is an “ergative-absolutive” language. Which means, in practical terms for the student, you have to learn many different declensions and case endings:
        A Basque noun-phrase is inflected in 17 different ways for case, multiplied by 4 ways for its definiteness and number. These first 68 forms are further modified based on other parts of the sentence, which in turn are inflected for the noun again. It has been estimated that, with two levels of recursion, a Basque noun may have 458,683 inflected forms.

        Verbs also do not bring joy to the student:

        Modern Basque dialects allow for the conjugation of about fifteen verbs, called synthetic verbs, some only in literary contexts. These can be put in the present and past tenses in the indicative and subjunctive moods, in three tenses in the conditional and potential moods, and in one tense in the imperative. Each verb that can be taken intransitively has a nor (absolutive) paradigm and possibly a nor-nori (absolutive–dative) paradigm, as in the sentence Aititeri txapela erori zaio (“The hat fell from grandfather[‘s head]”).[38] Each verb that can be taken transitively uses those two paradigms for antipassive-voice contexts in which no agent is mentioned (notice that Basque lacks a passive voice, and displays instead an antipassive voice paradigm), and also has a nor-nork (absolutive–ergative) paradigm and possibly a nor-nori-nork (absolutive–dative–ergative) paradigm. The last would entail the dizkidazue example above. In each paradigm, each constituent noun can take on any of eight persons, five singular and three plural, with the exception of nor-nori-nork in which the absolutive can only be third person singular or plural. (This draws on a language universal: *”Yesterday the boss presented the committee me” sounds at least odd, if not incorrect.) The most ubiquitous auxiliary, izan, can be used in any of these paradigms, depending on the nature of the main verb.

        OWWWW! Why do these mountain people have to make their languages so devilishly complex?

  32. et Al says:

    Toilet Barf: SpaceX rocket explodes after lift-off above Florida – live news and dramatic images
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/space/11704466/SpaceX-rocket-explodes-after-lift-off-live.html

    …The destruction of the craft, built by internet billionaire Elon Musk’s company, marks the third time a cargo ship has failed to reach the ISS in the past eight months, increasing pressure on astronauts…
    ####

    Who needs Russian space tech?

    • marknesop says:

      It’s interesting that Musk is given paragraphs and paragraphs to explain what happened and reassure readers that he is totally on top of the situation tweet by tweet. Contrast this reporting with the report by the same media outlet on the destruction of Russia’s Progress cargo spacecraft. A terse statement from Roscosmos, followed by a plug for SpaceX: “The United States hired privately owned Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, and Orbital ATK to fly cargo to the station after the space shuttles were retired in 2011. SpaceX’s missions have all been successful. Orbital lost a cargo ship in October after a failed launch. Europe flew five ATV freighters to the station, all successfully, but has no plans to fly any more. Japan is preparing for its fifth HTV cargo flight in August.”

      They gloss over Orbital Science’s failed launch, although the spacecraft exploded on launch and actually fell back on to the pad a blazing wreck, damaging the launch facility and surrounding property.

      • et Al says:

        A comms policy of twating absolutely everything is not so much about being transparent but as giving the impression of being transparent – plus, it is new</b and makes anyone who doesn’t do it (lie Roskosmos) look like old farts. It’s all about perception darling. Quite a few people confuse it with reality, BBC et al (not me) included.

        Now that you have brought it up Mark, Orbital Sciences has recently signed a contract with Roscosmos for RD-191 engines. Sanctions? What sanctions?

        http://spaceflightnow.com/2015/01/22/orbital-sciences-signs-contract-for-new-antares-engines/

        Remember kids, it is not facts, it is perception.

    • ThatJ says:

      Another failed launch?

      I guess they are replacing Americans with cheap foreign labour from the Third World in the space industry, like they’ve been doing in the IT business. Musk needs good enginers. The space industry is intolerant to continuous failures due to the costs involved and because it requires a large human resource pool at its disposal in the form of scientists fulfilling their jobs in different disciplines and at the same time assembling the pieces together. it is no easy endeavour for sure.

    • ThatJ says:

      The Saturn V (spoken as “Saturn five”) was an American human-rated expendable rocket used by NASA between 1966 and 1973. The three-stage liquid-fueled launch vehicle was developed to support the Apollo program for human exploration of the Moon, and was later used to launch Skylab, the first American space station. The Saturn V was launched 13 times from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida with no loss of crew or payload. The Saturn V remains the tallest, heaviest, and most powerful rocket ever brought to operational status and still holds records for the heaviest payload launched and largest payload capacity to low Earth orbit (LEO) of 118,000 kilograms (260,000 lb).

      The largest production model of the Saturn family of rockets, the Saturn V was designed under the direction of Wernher von Braun and Arthur Rudolph at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, with Boeing, North American Aviation, Douglas Aircraft Company, and IBM as the lead contractors. Von Braun’s design was based in part on his work on the Aggregate series of rockets, especially the A-10, A-11, and A-12, in Germany during World War II.

      To date, the Saturn V remains the only launch vehicle able to transport human beings beyond low Earth orbit. A total of 24 astronauts were launched to the Moon, three of them twice, in the four years spanning December 1968 through December 1972.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saturn_V

      One of the surviving people brought to the US by the Operation Paperclip is Georg von Tiesenhausen, who was born in the Russian Empire in 1914. He’s 101 years old.

      Another 101 years old NASA scientist was Dieter Grau, who died a few months ago.

      Here’s a list of people who helped the US astronauts land on the moon.

      • Ilya says:

        The nakedly amoral pursuit of power that has characterized the US almost from its inception: the US uses Jewish refugee scientists to beat the Nazis to the atomic bomb and then recruits Nazis to catch up to the Soviets in space.

      • Northern Star says:

        “The largest production model of the Saturn family of rockets, the Saturn V was designed under the direction of ***Wernher von Braun ***and Arthur Rudolph at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, with Boeing, North American Aviation, Douglas Aircraft Company, and IBM as the lead contractors. Von Braun’s design was based in part on his work on the Aggregate series of rockets, especially the A-10, A-11, and A-12, in Germany during World War II.”

        A war criminal who used slave labor at Peenemunde…however *you* try to spin it….I imagine you would award Mengele the Nobel Prize in Medicine…But then Obama is a Nobel Peace Laureate…whatever

  33. yalensis says:

    Meanwhile, Valentina Lisitsa is engaged in polemic with music critic Anne Midgette, who tweets under the moniker @ClassicalBeat.

    The polemic started a couple of weeks ago when Midgette posted a comment to a Norman Lebrecht piece about Lisitsa planning to play concert in Donetsk. The Lebrecht piece is mostly informational (although he does give away his bias in the title, by referring to Donbass as “occupied Ukraine” – occupied by RUSSIA, it goes without saying!) Here is Midgette’s comment (dated June 3, 2015, 7:32 PM):


    The accuracy of my Washington Post piece has been contested due solely, as far as I can tell, to my having included a link to a Lisitsa tweet of a picture of Igor Kolomoisky, one of the richest men in Ukraine, wearing a T-shirt with the slogan “жидобандера,” which Lisitsa translated as “Bandera’s kike.” Lisitsa was not branding him as a kike, but making the point that she found the T-shirt in poor taste, though translation itself involves many personal decisions, and not everyone gives the prefix “жидо” the spin she does; others have rendered the word along the lines of “Jewish Bandera-ite.” I linked to this image from the words “overtones of anti-semitism” (the full line was “the feed has some racism and overtones of anti-Semitism thrown in for good measure”), and some took this to mean that I didn’t understand Lisitsa’s point, and therefore dismissed everything I actually said in the article. I didn’t hear any other specific criticisms even from those who disagreed with me, and I’d love to know in what other regards my piece was found to be “inaccurate.” To deny the racism of the post about the Ukrainian national costumes seems wilfully naïve. – See more at: http://slippedisc.com/2015/06/valentina-lisitsa-to-play-in-occupied-ukraine/#sthash.FXCtCVoy.dpuf

    In short, MIdgette implied that Lisitsa was (1) anti-Semitic, because of the zhido-Bandera remark; and (2) racist – because of Lisitsa’s humorous contraposition of images of Ukrainians (in embroidered shirts) and Africans (in tribal costumes).

    While travelling around in Donbass this past week, seeing the results of random houses destroyed by random bombs, and starting to feel her own mortality, Lisitsa decided that she confront Midgette straight on about the previous post.

    “Why protest now, you ask?” Lisitsa challenging Anne on her twitter feed
    “Just in case. Because I don’t want my obituary calling me an anti-Semite.”

    Anne responds lamely:
    “My line was “overtones of antisemitism.” Not “antisemite.” Interesting that’s only point you object to in that whole article.”

    And they parry back and forth a few times.

    • marknesop says:

      Yes, “interesting” in a response usually signals that the respondent has got nothing and so is going to pretend to have discovered something deeply revealing in your response that goes directly to your character, or lack thereof. Sometimes it’s accurate; most often it’s just a deflection device.

      It’s simple. Lisitsa is unpopular with those who preserve in their heads the image of a free and prosperous Ukraine escaped from the orbit of Russia, an enemy of Russia and just as snuggly as a chinchilla with its European mama. They have no concept whatever of how it is going to achieve these conditions and still sell its goods in Russia so that Russia finances its independence and just learns to live with the fact that Ukraine despises it, so they just gloss over that, similarly to those flow diagrams in which all feeds go into a box on which is written “A miracle occurs here”, followed by an equals sign and “Success!!”

    • Cortes says:

      According to Daniel Cassidy’s terrific “The Secret Language of the Crossroads: How the Irish Invented Slang”, “kike ” derives from the Irish for “ringlets” and was originally descriptive rather than pejorative.

  34. et Al says:

    I bet you this guy’s name rings a bell:

    London Review of Books: ‘We ain’t found shit’

    Scott Ritter explains why Iran shouldn’t accept ‘no notice’ inspections of its nuclear sites

    http://www.lrb.co.uk/v37/n13/scott-ritter/we-aint-found-shit

    …No notice inspections to investigate ‘possible military dimensions’, however, go far beyond anything required by the NPT. The question is whether such an intrusive measure is warranted or whether, as Iran argues, the inspections would infringe its legitimate security interests.

    The facts appear to support Iran’s position. Countries subjected to intrusive no notice inspections have to be confident that the process isn’t actually an intelligence-led operation aimed at undermining their legitimate interests. The nuclear framework agreement with Iran doesn’t require the IAEA to accept anything Iran declares at face value, but none of its protocols justifies no notice inspections of military sites. Iran signed the Joint Plan of Action in 2013, and has abided by the verification conditions it required without incident. This track record should count in its favour, especially when you consider the dubious results of no notice inspections since they were first carried out in 1991…

    …The intelligence about the ‘possible military dimensions’ of Iran’s nuclear programme is of questionable provenance and most of it is more than a dozen years old. The consequences of failure to reach a nuclear accord with Iran today are too serious for the world to embrace a process that has been so controversial while having so little impact on legitimate disarmament. This is especially true when the inspected party, as is the case with Iran, has agreed to implement stringent verification measures and has a proven track record of abiding by them. Iran has been put in the impossible position of having to prove a negative. If it accepts inspections based on allegations it knows to be baseless, then it’s opening itself up to an endless cycle of foreign intrusion into its military and security infrastructure, and the inability of inspectors to discover something of relevance will only reinforce the belief that something is being hidden. We saw this happen before in Iraq, and the end result was a war based on flawed intelligence and baseless accusations that left many thousands dead and a region in turmoil.
    ####

    There’s much, much more at the link, but it is clear that the subversion of UN verification teams is still very much on, even if the world has changed a lot since the 1990s when the West did as it damn well pleased regardless of rules or protocol.

    • marknesop says:

      Once again, Iran is a signatory to the NPT and entitled to all the same rights and privileges as other signatories. It previously also agreed to an Additional Protocol which allowed no-notice inspections, until it realized that this accommodation cut no ice with the west and the country’s forthcoming display of trust-building had no effect on its constant demonization in the western press. Israel allows no inspections whatsoever of its nuclear program, which it does not acknowledge to exist, despite repeated invitations to put it under the IAEA, and the western response is just to give Israel more love and be more sensitive to its needs. Iran should accept the same oversight as other members and no more, and the west can like it or don’t.

    • Tim Owen says:

      God I wish I could remember where I’d heard this discussion – maybe here – but one of the best double-takes I’ve ever had was when someone suggested that the point of the pre-Iraq war inspections (war II) was to make sure that there WEREN’T WMD…and NOT to determine whether there WERE. In other words, the point of the exercise was not to head off war or to determine whether the war was justified… but to determine precisely the level of “opposition” that would be faced in a war that had been long planned out and was a foregone conclusion for anyone with eyes to see.

      (My mind is still repelled by that idea but it’s still bugging me: how deep is the rot?)

      In other words, any perceived show of susceptibility to “values” – such as giving up a particularly effective or cruel weapon system such as sarin gas or whatever – gets interpreted as weakness* and an invitation to invasion. Any perceived POSSESSION of the same gets interpreted as – you guessed it – an invitation to invasion… but only after a “verification” mission.

      Cue snare.

      What makes that plausible to me is:

      – Westmoreland’s story about encountering staff in the Pentagon sharing the idea that the US would attack, what was it (can’t be arsed) 5 states in 7 years
      – that ex-French FM saying that british sources saying two years prior to the Arab Spring that they were planning something for Syria
      – I think it was Fabius who ALSO talked about the plan to take out ~ 5 states in ~ 7 years
      – also

      All roads lead to… what Washington wants.

      Now what’s striking to me about the above is that there’s an understated assumption behind this strategy: complete practical domination of the way the narrative is portrayed in order to “sell it” with a veneer of legitimacy.

      It can’t work without it.

      In turn what I think is illuminated about the current juncture by the above is this: the current – embarrassingly shrill – hysteria about Russian “propaganda” is explained by this so to speak “structural” need to control the narrative given the risk of public exposure of a completely democratically “unordained” set of plans.

      * Worth noting that it was apparently NATO member Germany who supplied poison gas to Iraq in the Iran-Iraq war/ Couldn’t they have just asked the Germans what they had.
      * Might have actually been Scott Ritter but I actually think it was Chris Hedges.

      • Cortes says:

        Two years prior to the Arab Spring a mild mannered Conquistador was startled to hear a “diplomat” brag about Assad being “toast” within a year. Said diplomat was anchored to a desk in Manila.

  35. et Al says:

    A bit late as something for the weekend, but this following piece is great and quite a long, mental read:

    Wired: In Search of the Living, Purring, Singing Heart of the Online Cat-Industrial Complex

    A cat wearing a short tie plays music on a cat-shaped keyboard (“Pancake Meowsic Video,” 185,459 views). A woman performs sun salutations with a cat on her back (“Cat Loves Yoga,” 1,539 views). A man slaps two cats on an ironing board to the beat of “Atmosphere” (“Cat Slap Joy Division,” 357,605 views; watch this one). (Now, I mean.) Kittens try to keep up with an accelerating treadmill (“Treadmill Kittens,” 3.4 million views). A fat cat walks on an underwater treadmill (“Fat Cat Walking on Underwater Treadmill,” 133,434 views). Two cats cuff at a treadmill in perplexed inquisition (“Cats Try to Understand Treadmill,” 1.9 million views). Search YouTube for “cat treadmill” and see how many results there are. Or, actually, don’t.

    Writing that paragraph took more than an hour. To continue the catalog for a page would’ve taken weeks. But if one has set out to say something definitive about the relationship between cats and the Internet, it’s important not to be delayed indefinitely by Internet cats.

    The obvious place to begin an inquiry into the Internet cat is with Maru, the most famous feline on the Internet. …

  36. Fern says:

    And the latest news from Inside the Bubble or, the EU as it’s sometimes known, is this breathless piece from the Guardian announcing the actions the Bubble leaders are planning to take to counter Russian ‘propaganda’.

    ”The document, drafted by the EU’s diplomatic corps, also calls for efforts to persuade people in countries such as Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova of the benefits of European-style reforms.

    The plan was prepared ahead of the EU summit in Brussels and offers a strategy to provide alternatives sources of information to outlets such as Russia’s state-funded RT television, amid an increasingly polarised media environment sparked by the war in Ukraine.

    A communications unit called the East StratCom Team, launched in April, will support EU delegations in the six eastern neighbourhood countries, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine – as well as in Russia itself.

    The main objectives include communicating and promoting “EU policies and values”, supporting independent media and increasing awareness of “disinformation activities by external actors”.
    The document states that communication towards the east should “first and foremost focus on the development of positive and effective messages regarding EU policies towards the region”.
    Brussels needs to spread the message that reforms promoted by the European Union “can, over time, have a positive impact on their daily lives,” the action plan says. It stresses that the strategy should highlight the benefits, not the bureaucracy, focusing on clearly explaining the positive effects of EU programmes and policies rather than going into details about the policies.”

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jun/25/eu-russia-propaganda-ukraine

    The author of the paper or report called “The Kremlin’s Hall of Mirrors” to which this Guardian article refers is Peter Pomerantsev and everything makes an appearance therein including Putin’s troll factory. It goes without saying that everything coming out of Russia is propaganda while everything coming out of the West is the God’s Honest Truth. Pure unvarnished facts. Take this snippet where he tells the tale of one Margo Gontar who’s involved with StopFake:

    ”At times like this, she had always reached out to western media for a sense of something solid, but this was starting to slip too. Whenever somewhere like the BBC or Tagesspiegel published a story, they felt obliged to present the Kremlin’s version of events – fascists, western conspiracy, etc – as the other side, for balance. Gontar began to wonder whether her search for certainty was futile: if the truth was constantly shifting before her eyes, and there was always another side to every story, was there anything solid left to hold on to?”

    Yeah, I always reach out to western media for the self-same reasons. And if the BBC’s coverage of Ukraine has ever been impartial, well, I must have blinked and missed it.

    In similar vein, Pomerantsev spends a lot of the article ridiculing RT as here:-

    ”Presenters rarely challenge the views of “experts” during discussions of subjects such as the Syria conflict – where Moscow has backed President Bashar al-Assad. One regular guest has suggested that the Syrian civil war was “planned in 1997 by Paul Wolfowitz”, while another has described the death toll as “a joint production of CIA, MI6, Mossad”.

    http://www.theguardian.com/news/2015/apr/09/kremlin-hall-of-mirrors-military-information-psychology

    I take it that Mr Pomerantsev has heard neither of the Yinon plan dating from the 1970’s which started that a key part of Israel’s foreign policy objectives should be the break-up of the surrounding nation states into mutually hostile ethnic statelets nor the Project for a New American Century, a neo-con outfit in which Wolfowitz played a leading role, that targeted around seven countries, including Iraq and Syria for destruction.

    This is the issue Mr P the EU and NATO are really complaining about – in the past their statements would pass without challenge, but not any longer.

    • Pavlo Svolochenko says:

      ‘Gontar began to wonder whether her search for certainty was futile: if the truth was constantly shifting before her eyes, and there was always another side to every story, was there anything solid left to hold on to?”’

      That’s the shreds of your conscience screaming at you to pull your head out of your arse. You know you’re full of it – why not quit before you completely damn yourself?

      • yalensis says:

        Pro-Russian propagandists have found a way to weaponize FACTS.
        This is the latest form of hybrid warfare. Or maybe multi-brid warfare.

        Anyhow, it gets confusing; on whom can one count on in this post-modernistic world?
        Remember:
        The Truth is only what Curt says it is, there is your guiding star!

      • marknesop says:

        What infuriates me is the assumption – as Fern alluded – that everything Russia puts out as fact is actually disinformation, while everything the west puts out as fact is fact, despite being caught lying again and again and again. Believe us – baby, we’ve changed.

        • Cortes says:

          Cavour used to say that the surest way to deceive his counterparts was to tell the plain truth.

        • Moscow Exile says:

          I remember some smart arse on the Guardian CiF commenting after I had posted a lengthy contribution in which I had used Levada sourced statistics: “You do realize that all your sources are Russian?”

    • ThatJ says:

      Guardian correspondent “Matt G” commented:

      US government media Radio Liberty reports on “strategic communications action plan” they probably had a pivotal role in writing, about how they plan to pump more money into Ukrainian and other post-soviet media in order to promote Europeanization, which would technically be what RFE would call “propaganda”. Both Russian media and Western media especially RFE is complicit in “disinformation propaganda campaigns” and I struggle to understand what quite “EU policies and values” are exactly, other than promoting LGTB rights. Nonetheless, why do we need to promote “EU policies and values” in three Caucasus countries and two European countries one traditionally Russian and the other which will never be integrated into the EU. Is it just me or does this look less about promoting are values and more about turning post-soviet states against Russia? Something which was previously carried out in Ukraine before the coup as highlighted in some Wikileaks documents on Crimea.

      “Lesm” had this to say:

      This article itself is a good example of the kind of propaganda that the EU is thinking of expanding to the East. Rt was itself started by the Russians as an antidote to the relentless Western propaganda contained in the “news” that comes from the Western Controlled wire services and media empires. The thing I find quite funny about the West is their habit of suggesting always that they are simply responding to things being done to them rather than initiating actions that others are responding to. So the West never does “terrorism”, it only does “counter-terrorism”. Equally it never does propaganda, it only counters propaganda from the “other” side.

      The reality is of course quite different. The West, and in particular the US, the UK and NATO, are the largest and most successful terrorist organisations on the planet. In addition the old USSR acknowledged that it simply could not compete with the propaganda mechanisms of the West as they were so pervasive and so well disguised as to be unbeatable!!!!

      Reader “DomesticExtremist” is unconvinced that the EU is democratic:

      European values = declaring Conchita Wurst the winner of Eurovision 2014 even though the telephone (popular) vote was won by Donatan and Cleo.

      A metaphor for Western democracy if ever there was.

      [ThatJ: I hate it when people speak only of the EU, EU, EU… it’s like we’re helping to cement the view in the public’s mind that the EU is kinda like an “United States of Europe”. Distinction between the member countries must be made. I’ll try to speak of “Brussels” instead of the European Union, because Brussels belongs to a country only (Belgium), and the message is clear enough: the dictates of Brussels are alien to the European countries.]

      A bigoted homophobe named “Lordoflight23” thinks US-exported, Brussels-welcomed values are uninspiring:

      The values of supporting moderate opposition and creating extremist, backing all “good regimes” around the world, the two most powerful EU leaders being wiretapped and still do nothing about it, gay parades and bearded women. Some values that is.

      Kremlin troll “Alphysicist” resorts to whataboutism, links to a RT article:

      ‘Let viewers form own opinions’ – German channel probed for airing RT show

      So in Germany Salve.TV took a broadcast from RT.com, and is now under fire from media watchdogs. That is EU pluralism! Real values.

      I also do not really get what the EU is doing. There already exist pro-western propaganda outlets, for example RFE/RL, etc. In Hungary, more than 50% of the media is western owned. So why is more propaganda needed?

      I like RT, because one gets to hear many who are persona non grata in the Western media. John Mearsheimer, Stephen Walt, Gilad Atzmon, Norman Finkelstein, George Galloway, Udo Ulfkotte, and the list goes on and on. And they have many interesting things to say! Also, even if RT is connected to the Kremlin, the persons above are saying their own opinions, regardless of the Kremlin. This is why RT is a really useful supplement to western propaganda.

      • Fern says:

        ThatJ, thanks for posting those comments from Guardian correspondents, baffling as always that they seem more informed than the journalists paid to write for the paper. Glad to hear it’s not only me struggling to understand what ‘western values’ actually are.

    • marknesop says:

      Typical duplication of effort so as to charge the public purse twice over for the same work. The EU produced a marvelous graphic extravaganza intended to lure Ukraine, extolling the virtues of European integration and the salutatory effect it would have on important things like life expectancy, health care, availability of clean water, life expectancy (so important they put it in twice), friendly police instead of extortion-junkies, bla, bla. I encourage everyone to have a look through it from the lens of today, and see how many came true. I especially loved the one about tolerance – mercy, yes; tolerance in Ukraine has certainly taken a leap upward thanks to Europe’s beneficial influence.

  37. Moscow Exile says:

    To the heroes, glory!

    Former Ukrainian Minister of Defence Geletey has acquired an estate in England close to Immingham for 23 million euros….

    Anyone who Who can’t jump is a Moskal!

    See: Lifestyles of the rich and famous Ukrainian civil servants

    • Moscow Exile says:

      Looks like Bandera!

    • yalensis says:

      Heletei is the “conquering hero” who “liberated” Slavyansk from the Strelkovites.
      Corollary to this:

      On the day of, or maybe one day after this “liberation”, according to eye-witness Galina Pyshniak, a 3-year-old baby was put to death in Slavyansk by nailing him to a cardboard sign; and this alleged incident, if it happend, would have been on the orders of Mr. Heletei.

      Which would make him a child-murderer and war criminal.
      And yes, with that silly grin on his face, he looks EXACTLY like Stepan Bandera!

  38. ThatJ says:

    RACE REALISM LIVES

    Despite years of lib-left campaigning to enforce peecee religiosity and Kick Racism Out of Football, a Daily Mail reporter – himself a Black from the Caribbean – got the following snaps (and others like them) (19 vi).

    At first glance, they look like any bunch of young lads sitting down to a meal. In this case, they happen to be the England Under-20s football squad. Look more closely, though, and you will see a startling fact: one table is entirely inhabited by black players, the other by white.

    The same pattern can be seen in other pictures taken at the squad’s training base during a tournament in France [in May].

    Exercising in the swimming pool, six white players line up alongside each other, while the black youngsters gather together at the other end of the pool. And on a line of training bikes, it is the same story. Black and white separated by colour.

    TOP LUNIS GET RELIGION UNCLUBBED

    In the same week when Oxford received its final instalment of posthumous punishment from Lady Thatcher, as the last of her personal effects (books, handbag etc.) went to Churchill College, Cambridge (in revenge for Oxford hating her and not having given her an honorary degree), students of Magdalen College, Cambridge, took their turn at peecee mania by demanding the cessation of jelly wrestling by bikinied undergraduettes (q.v.) – a demand to which the sorry college’s Provost Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, readily acceded since he too judged such drinking club practices as ‘sexist’ (Sunday Mail, 21 vi).

    Killjoy student despots at both Oxford and Cambridge also launched a campaign called No Exclusive And Sexist Societies. The petition called for the for an end to clubs such as the historic Pitt Club, which had counted Edward VII and George V as members, and Oxford’s Bullingdon Club, whose alumni of 2015 included Prime Minister David Cameron and Chancellor George Osborne.

    RACE-REALIST MONKS vs MUESLIS

    With cavalier disregard for the thirty-year pretentiousness of Western leftists, postmodernists, social anthropologists etc to the effect that ‘races’ do not exist, an influential group of Buddhist monks announced it would defend Myanmar/Burma’s “race and religion” against Rohingya (q.v.)

    Muslims who had invaded from neighbouring basket-case Bangladesh/Bengal. Meeting in Rangoon, some 1,300 monks of Ma Ba Tha [Organization for the Protection of Race and Religion] said they would encourage Burma’s electorate and military government to ban the wearing of headscarves in schools – they had previously had success in making it a crime for a woman to bear more than one baby in three years, a eugenic measure targeting chiefly the Rohingyas (Guardian, 23 vi).

    CARRY ON CRUCIFYING

    Black Friday, when scores of Poms, Krauts, Frogs and Shitites were gunned, bombed or decapitated in Tunisia, France and Kuwait, came and went with the usual junkets for EU politicos (whom jihadists strangely spared from their depradations – perhaps because of incompetence, or perhaps because they wanted continued protection from Western ‘leaders’).

    Not a single mosque was closed, let alone burned down; not a single burqa or other hoodie was banned; no suggestion was made of a person’s support for jiheading cancelling UK citizenship; no sanctions were sought against Solunni countries (like Saudi and Qatar) whose mega-rich citizens funded Islamic terror; and not a single Christian minister was told his/her continued pay and emoluments would depend on avoiding sneering at the Crusades.

    Instead, under the POTUShip of Black/Muesli Obarmy, yag ‘marriage’ and taxbreaks were forced (by a 5-4 Supreme Court vote) on every state of the USA to parade before Russia’s President Putin the sheer unlikelihood of the West’s lunchers [sea bass a favourite with Euroscoffers in Brussels] sitting down with him to discuss the problems of the Ukraine, Syria, the Horn of Africa and Chechnya (where IS/ISIS/ISIL/Daesh had earlier in the week declared war on Russia — in token of which 400 fanatic Chechen Solunnis had already got themselves to Syria/Iraq to help with rape, pillage, beheadings and the blowing up of Mesopotamian ruins).

    No: the peecee goons of politics, the polytechnics and MSM were not to be distracted by A/A mayhem from their chosen task of bringing more slave labourers and welfare backers to the West to replace natives who drew disconcerting strength from their families or their own two feet.

    Still, the latest ISlamic atrocity at least drew support for Oz Queensman PM Tony Abbott from noted British historian Michael Burleigh who, writing in the Mail (27 vi), said the West would have to hire Algeria or Morocco as dumping grounds ooops safe havens for boat people whose invading millions might well contain substantial contributions of IS jiheaders.

    Perhaps the West would re-learn from Australia how to resume the White man’s burden – though the über-diners of Brussels seemed set to be slow learners as they squabbled about the Muesli invasion throughout three courses, leaving PM Daft Dave only five minutes to present British demands for EU reform (to limit international welfarist free-loading) while the cheese was served.

    • Jen says:

      The photos of the footballers look very suspicious especially as the Daily Mail article did not interview the players themselves. Who knows if the photographer waited until the players separated into two temporary groups, one group with white players and the other with black players, and then took the photos? Why take just one photo of the players sitting down in one dining session when they might have sat down in other dining sessions in more mixed groups? There may be selective bias on the photographer’s part here that plays up to the Daily Mail readers’ paranoia.

      If those footballers were truly squeamish, would they be sharing the swimming pool together? And the photographer might have taken the photo of the pool scene at a point in the game where the swimmers happened to separate into those two groups.

      Also those “race-realist” monks are the same Saffron Revolution fundamentalist Buddhist twats who support Aung San Suu Kyi, the darling of Western political elites. It is these people who are leading the drive to deny Rohingya Muslims, who have lived in Myanmar for centuries, citizenship rights, the ability to find employment and to force them into the sea.

    • Northern Star says:

      “Instead, under the ****POTUShip of Black/Muesli Obarmy,*** yag ‘marriage’ and taxbreaks were forced (by a 5-4 Supreme Court vote) on every state of the USA to ”

      Now exactly WTF is THAT…LOL!!!!!! Your rantings are starting to take on the character of the incoherent ……Careful…If you’re strapped to a gurney with a Hannibal Lecter face mask….you won’t be able to post on KS…….and what if the attendants are all
      ‘mud people’…..

      • ThatJ says:

        I didn’t write that.

        The author inserts a little bit of humor in his weekly summaries, which deal with the news out there. It’s an exercise in venting, really.

        • yalensis says:

          Dear ThatJ:
          It’s okay to post something that you don’t agree with, but you really should (especially if the content is offensive) post a disclaimer along with the quote.

          Ha ha – who am I kidding? You agree with every syllable that incoherent nut says!
          (about the “Mueslis” and all the rest of it…)

          Once again, you are being DUPLICITOUS….
          But you are not fooling anyone.

  39. Fern says:

    It would take a heart of stone not to laugh. What’s the word I’m looking for? Ah yes, schadenfreude:-

    ”In 2015, the German economy is estimated to lose up to 290,000 jobs and receive $10 billion less than it could due to restrictive measure imposed on Moscow, the Committee on Eastern European Economic Relations told Contra Magazine. German exports to Russia last year fell by $7.2 billion.
    “The current developments exceed our worst fears,” committee chairman Eckhard Cordes said.
    This nasty short-term implication of an unreasonable Western policy towards Russia is affecting many European countries, not only the largest economy in the EU. In total, the European Union could potentially lose as much as $110 billion and up to 2 million jobs from the anti-Russian sanctions, according to the committee’s estimates.

    But the long-term consequences are far more profound and damaging. German businesses now fear that their reliable and long-time Russian partners have pivoted to Asia, specifically China.

    German businesses are concerned that this shift could be permanent. By the time restrictive measures are lifted, former ties and partnerships could be long gone.”

    http://sputniknews.com/business/20150629/1023973728.html

    “Former ties and partnerships could be gone”. You bet. What’s it gonna take before Europe’s so called leaders wake up to the fact that US sanctions aren’t just about trying to destroy Russia’s economy, but also about doing serious, possibly terminal damage to the European one?

  40. yalensis says:

    I found this link to a French newspaper.
    Not sure, but it appears to be the organ of Marine Le Pen’s party.
    One of the correspondents is Jacques Frère who appears to be reporting directly from Donbass, with a pro-Russian slant.

  41. Moscow Exile says:

    Proof that the empire is evil:

    Russian Orthodox Church Spokesman Lashes Out Over U.S. Gay Marriage Ruling

    Gay marriage is what freedom and democracy is about.

    Russia is a despotic state locked in the middle ages and only exports oil: makes nothing!

    Sort of like Saudi Arabia.

    • yalensis says:

      “based on the eternal and unchanging moral laws dictated by God….”

      If God hates gays, then why did He make Freddie Mercury so damned irresistable?

      • yalensis says:

        P.S. – from that same link:

        “A survey by independent pollster Levada Center last month found 37 percent of Russians think homosexuality is a disease that needs to be cured.”

        I actually find that heartening. After reading the comments to the Dobrynin piece, I got the impression that 99% of Russians wanted to actually kill homosexuals.

        Nice to have a scientific poll. Comments to a particular piece obviously suffer from selection bias: only people who feel very strongly are going to bother commenting!

        • Moscow Exile says:

          Everyone here with whom I discussed this question of homosexuality has a live-and-let-live attitude to homosexuals and are not bothered what they do in private with consenting adults. Some think they are suffering from some mental illness: most don’t care one way or other – so long as they don’t frighten the horses, and more importantly, the kids, with public displays of their sexual preferences. So “gay” parades are definitely out here: they are considered to be vulgar and uncultured.

        • bolasete says:

          jurgen –> jung –> freddie. you are following a dangerous path! return to the righteous commie path now!

      • et Al says:

        yalensis, get thee to a monastery! Hang on a sec….

      • Moscow Exile says:

        Your Christian god did not make him. Freddie was a heathen Parsee, one of them Zoroastrians.

    • marknesop says:

      Yes, western media sources – of which The Moscow Times is definitely one – are high-fiving each other about how “furious” the Americans have made The Kremlin with their gay marriage decision. If I were in the Kremlin, I would pretend to be so furious that they would look nervously at one another and maybe send for an ambulance, because America seems to be committed to making important decisions just based on how mad it’ll make Russia. Great fun. No wonder they are the indispensable nation.

      Ooooooo!!! Those gay Americans just make me so MAD!!!

      • yalensis says:

        Yes, I am pretty sure that Obama and the West are just trolling Russia at this point.
        Not the Supreme Court decision, that was an actual product of internal American politics, and has been in the works for some time.

        However, the rainbow flag on the White House, and the rainbow Facebook banner, and the like…. that was just for trolling purposes, I am pretty sure!

        Unfortunately, Russia makes itself too trollable on this issue.
        And when you have people like Milonov trying to score cheap points in the Duma, and homophobes ranting on every pro-Russian forum, then the Western propagandists know they have drawn blood on this issue. So they just keep pushing the buttons.

        I feel bad for Russian homosexuals, most of whom are completely patriotic and not any kind of Fifth Column. (And most of whom also not child molesters.)
        And yet risk being tainted by the Western theatrics and trouble-making propaganda.
        All just stirring the pot….

  42. Jeremn says:

    Award for weirdest article of the week (stiff competition):

    http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB11614593350830634792804581050061429233274

    “It should be of great concern in the West that Bulgaria, a member of NATO and the European Union, is one of his [Putin/antichrist] targets.”

    Evidence for growing affinity between Bulgaria and Russia:

    1. Most older Bulgarians speak Russian.
    2. The Bulgarian language also uses a Cyrillic script.
    3. Bulgaria was Moscow’s most loyal ally in the Warsaw Pact, and many Bulgarians have long had positive feelings about their former fellow members of the Soviet Union.
    4. Bulgaria is dependent on Russian gas.
    5. Observers in Bulgaria and abroad saw the hand of Mr. Putin (and Russian money) behind the successful efforts of environmentalists to secure legislation that bans oil and gas fracking.

    And that’s about it. Good god, they use Cyrillic, the untrustworthy sods!

  43. et Al says:

    FlightGlobal: MH17: Investigators obstructed during cell-tower probe
    http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/mh17-investigators-obstructed-during-cell-tower-probe-414104/

    …eams conducting the criminal inquiry into the crash, in July last year, have spent some two weeks in the area with the support of European security organisation OSCE.

    They have been trying to perform technical research into cell towers used by mobile telephones and looking into the communications networks of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

    But the Dutch prosecutor’s office says that representatives of the so-called Luhansk People’s Republic – a self-proclaimed breakaway territory – have “refused access” to the area and, as a result, its effort in Luhansk has “not succeeded”.

    This effort had been intended to obtain “evidence to support or discard different scenarios of the cause of the crash”, the office adds.

    It has managed to perform research into cell-tower location, as well as network analysis, in the Donetsk area…
    ####

    They’re not fooling anyone. It’s not as if ‘expert teams’ full of military intelligence personnel have ever before been used to gather intel and feed it back to the correct military, helping their operations such as artillery and air strikes. It is exactly what the KVM mission in Kosovo did, for example gathering GPS and installation intel under the guise of supporting the cease-fire there. The same was true of the UN’s nuclear teams in Iraq & II-ran and elsewhere.

    • kat kan says:

      OSCE is regularly accused of this (by both sides). It’s been the Pravy Sector and Ukies taking the potshots at the OSCE observation drones. But it was DPR that found them burying a “listening device” somewhere and made them take it away.

      Besides. Most of the cell towers working in July last year have been damaged, or disconnected for belonging to the Ukrainian network. They now have their own local cell service with their own towers (negotiating roaming but none on line yet).

      Anyway, MH17 didn’t crash into a cell tower on takeoff, nor did it carry a bomb set off by a call from the ground. A “birdie coming to you” call and maybe every other call that day has already been taped by SBU.

      Anyway, after months of fighting, Malaysia has finally been allowed onto the investigation team, and has demanded a UN investigation, ie UN oversight of a hearing where everything is laid out and the final report adjudicated. This kills the secrecy provisions of the original agreement, unless UN can be persuaded to hold it as a secret hearing. UN acceptance of this scheme may be announced in time for the anniversary, they hope.

      source: can’t remember.

  44. Moscow Exile says:

    European debt crisis: It’s not just Greece that’s drowning in debt

    Debt levels across the eurozone continue to rocket, with the monetary bloc’s debt reaching nearly 92% in 2014 – the highest level since the single currency was introduced in 1999…

    Just three European countries have managed to reduce their total debt between the first quarter of 2012 and the last quarter of 2014, while eight have managed to do so as a proportion of their GDP….

    The smallest debts, as a proportion of GDP, were seen in Estonia, Norway and Bulgaria – all of whose government debts are below 30% of their GDP.

    The United Kingdom’s debt currently accounts for 89.4% of its GDP, ninth highest in the EU.

    I wonder if Telegraph readers would be interested to know what the Rusian debt to GDP ratio is?

    It’s 17.92 percent.

    Kremlin propaganda, surely!

  45. yalensis says:

    Moldavian election news.
    On Sunday, there was election for Mayor of Kishinev. Between pro-Western incumbent Dorin Chirtoacă aka “The Moldavian Saakashvili”; versus pro-Russian candidate Zinaida Grechanaya.

    In the second round, Grechanaya lost by 7 points. The incumbent is a member of the Liberal Party; whereas Grenanaya is a member of the Socialist Party.

    After final counting of votes: Chirtoacăreceived 163,570 votes (53.46%). Grechanaya received 141,929 votes (46.56%).

    However, the leader of the Socialist Party of Moldavia, Igor Dodon, announced Monday night, that he does not recognize the result of the election, due to mucho frauds and falsifications.

    Grechanaya was actually expected to win: In the first round, she overtook Chirtoacă.
    Socialists accuse Chirtoacă of using the usual “administrative resources” in the second round: fake voters, carousels, the whole 9 yards.

    • kat kan says:

      Places like that need compulsory voting. Everyone has to show up. Everyone gets indelible green ink on their thumbs. No carousel, no voting “for” those who didn’t bother. Next day cops give on the spot fines to every adult with non-green thumbs.

      • yalensis says:

        I totally agree 100%.

        If that rule had been in place, then Grechanaya probably would have won cleanly, even in the first round.

  46. yalensis says:

    On the banking front:
    Russia has joined China and India to create a new bank!

    Called the “Asiatic Bank of Infrastructure Investments” (ABII).
    In the governance of the bank, China commands 20.06% of the votes; India 7.5%; and Russia 5.92%.

    The signing ceremony took place Monday morning in Beijing. 300 delegates from 57 founding nations were present at the ceremony.
    The delegates voted on the ratio of capital, number of votes awarded to different national interests, the governance structure, rules of order, and so on.


    “Xinhua news agency quoted China’s vice finance minister Shi Yaobin as saying that China did not seek a veto in the bank, describing its stake and voting share in the initial stage as a “natural result” of current rules.”

    According to Reuters, this bank is a huge success for China, and a pie in the face to the United States of America.

  47. yalensis says:

    In tax news:

    The Donetsk Peoples Republic has accomplished what Ukraine was not able to in its 24-year existence: It abolished the value-added tax.

    Which in Russian is called Налог на добавленную стоимость (НДС) .

    At the parlilamentary voting of DPR, delegates of both major political parties (“Free Donbass” and “Donetsk Republic”) joined in voting for the motion, resulting in 81 votes “for”.
    According to one of the delegates Boris Litvinov, this particular tax is a hallmark of a corrupt system.
    The voted-out “value-added tax” will be replaced by a simple “sales tax”, which everybody hopes will make the tax-gathering system much simpler, easier, and more transparent.

    • kat kan says:

      VAT is very hard to calculate and collect unless sales nearly all go through computers. Sales tax is collected from the vendor and his problem if he didn’t get it from the customers. It can also be easily set at different levels for different goods. Litvinov is a double bass player with an economics degree’, foundation member of Donetsk Communist Party. A bit here about his economic plans
      http://www.zoominfo.com/p/Boris-Litvinov/-2058561800.

  48. Moscow Exile says:

    Right-on street art in Odessa

    Odessa shall be free!

    No place for fascists in the Hero City

  49. Moscow Exile says:

    Such unabashed heartfelt sincerity displayed for all to witness!

    Love Kerry’s emotionally clamped lips.

    Worthy champions of the professional bullshitters’ league.

    • et Al says:

      A gay marriage in the making! Which one do you reckon is the more dramatic and highly strung?

      • Moscow Exile says:

        Le Frog, naturellement!

      • marknesop says:

        I reckon you could never trust Kerry, and you would probably have to go through his handbag whilst he was in the shower, because he would shiv you between the ribs and run off with another guy as soon as your back was turned (figuratively speaking). He likes variety in his alliances, always has done. They’re all wrong for one another anyway; you can tell. Francois is looking up at him (a function of having stunted growth from drinking too much instant coffee before he could walk) with moist eyes, waiting for Kerry to make all the decisions. It might work if Kerry was a controlling personality who likes to make all the decisions, but he too is a weak sister who likes to be dominated. Kerry should just kiss him on top of the head, put him down and send him back to his Mum, who knows best. It would never work.

      • Jen says:

        Rubbing noses must be the new EU / Western value.



        Even Stephen Harper does it:

  50. Moscow Exile says:

    New York Homosexual Parade, Russian visitors:

    Putin is a tyrant!

    • ThatJ says:

      New York Russians? Maybe today, because most of the so-called Russian immigrants to the US in the past were God’s Chosen People.

    • yalensis says:

      Yeah, yeah, we get it, Moscow Exile.
      I think it has been well established by now that you do not like gay people, and do not feel comfortable around them.

      All Russian gays are State-Department-paid Fifth Columnists, like the ones shown above.
      Just like all Russian Jews are Trotskyite Zionists paid by Victoria Nuland and the Israel lobby.
      I know because ThatJ told me so.
      Meanwhile, people like you can cheer on Milonov and his attempts to “legisate away the gay”…

      • Moscow Exile says:

        Who are “we” that you refer to and what do “we” get?

        Oh, I see:

        I think it has been well established by now that you do not like gay people, and do not feel comfortable around them.

        Really?

        Well established by whom?

        I posted a picture of Russians that attended a gay parade in New York, no more, no less.

        Sorry to trash your unfounded opinion about my attititude to homosexuals, but I don’t give a flying fuck what they do in private with consenting adults.

        What I do dislike, though, is the idea that Russian homosexuals take it upon themselves to latch onto homosexual rights issues in order to condemn Russia and the Russian president, jumping onto the orchestrated bandwagon that trumpets that the alleged denial of their sexual practices in Russia is evidence of the absence of democracy in that country and that the Russian state is a tyrannical regime. This whole process is, I am convinced, orchestrated by the powers that be in the USA to attack “the enemy state”.

        That these Russians that took part in the New York gay parade allege that “Putin is a threat to Russia” because he denies their rights – and he isn’t and he doesn’t – then in view of the fact that 89% of Russian citizens support Putin’s policies, would you also then say that as regards that 89% that “we get it” as well, that you believe that it has been well established by now that Russians do not like gay people, and do not feel comfortable around them?

        • yalensis says:

          “What I do dislike, though, is the idea that Russian homosexuals take it upon themselves to latch onto homosexual rights issues in order to condemn Russia… (etc.)”

          Should read: “SOME Russian homosexuals…”
          Which is exactly what I object about your comments, and the general tone of your posts dealing with this issue. It isn’t just about your above comment, which is innocuous enough, and in fact I was about to post something similar before I saw yours.

          You are always quick to post images and comments that put ALL homosexuals in a bad light. Like the extreme ones, wearing pink lace panties and so on.
          These people exist, but are not the only ones.
          It’s analogous to ThatJ posting images of racial minorities who look particularly ape-like.
          Just to score a cheap point.

          In summary: I think you and I DO agree that
          (1) Majority of Russian citizens are quite conservative in their values and attitudes and towards family life and sexuality;
          (2) Hence, vast majority of Russian citizens are opposed to homosexuality; and
          (3) Western propaganda utilizes this as a wedge, and uses paid “gay lobby” in Russia as Fifth Columnists.

          So, we can agree on all that.
          What we don’t agree on, is that you have a tendency to demean an entire group of people.
          And I don’t like that, since I have friends and even relatives who are gay, and who don’t fit your preconceptions.
          Which is why I sometimes attempt to counter your posts with ones showing more positive images of homsexuals, and also exampes of homosexualas who are pro-Russian; for example, Johnny Weir.
          And then you usually counter my positive example with some other demeaning comment or image., which you think is hilariously funny.

          • Moscow Exile says:

            You are always quick to post images and comments that put ALL homosexuals in a bad light.

            Always?

            Every time I comment here, which I do very often?

            In fact, both you and I are the most frequent of contributors.

            Could you give some examples when I have recently done this, for in view of the fact that you maintain that I am “always quick to post images and comments that put ALL homosexuals in a bad light” that shouldn’t be too difficult for you to do so.

            You know, an example such as “the extreme ones, wearing pink lace panties and so on” that you maintain I post here.

            I should dearly like to know when I have posted such images.

            Yes, it was an error not to add “some” to “Russian homosexuals” above, and I surely did not mean that each and every Russian homosexual prefers to voice his disapproval of so-called “anti-gay” laws in Russia, principally because there is no such law.

            But I repeat: what evidence have you that I am “always quick to post images and comments that put comments that put ALL homosexuals in a bad light”?

            • Moscow Exile says:

              And then you usually counter my positive example with some other demeaning comment or image., which you think is hilariously funny.

              Could you illustrate this accusation with an example of a negative riposte from me as regards this matter?

    • ThatJ says:

      @yalensis

      But the people shown above are your average gay “rights” activists.

      Of course, their rights are not threatened, not in the US before the court’s political decision, nor in Russia.

      Gays in Russia can marry people of the opposite sex, just like any other Russian. And if they marry, they also enjoy the benefits that come with civil marriage.

      Indeed, I remember a weird case from Russia. The man self-identified as a woman, and the woman as a man… and they married.

      Technically, they didn’t break any law because the law prohibits same-sex marriage, not gay marriage.

      Gays are not legally discriminated in Russia because, like I said, they can marry — just like any other Russian — people of the opposite sex. Russians, without distinction, are not allowed to marry people of the same sex. Again, this law (or lack thereof) applies to everyone, regardless of sexual identity. There’s no discrimination.

      • yalensis says:

        Huh??

        Just for the record, I am actually NOT in favor of gay marriage. I think the concept is kinda silly. Although, when push comes to shove, I don’t really give a rat’s ass.

        Civil unions, like they used to have in the state of Vermont would have satisfied the need, I think, for same-sex couples to share property and tax returns, etc. For example, the issue with one of my relatives is that she wanted to insure that, if she died, her social security pension would go to her friend, and not back to the federal government and IRS. ’cause she hates the IRS.

        There are little “gotchas” like that, all over the system.

        Another issue with one of my gay friends was, if he would be allowed into the hospital to visit his sick friend, since the latter’s parents nixed the idea (even though the friend was actually an adult; but he didn’t have a living will or privacy instructions, and there are a lot of weird loopholes and stuff going on in various systems… you get the drift…

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