Turn On Your Receiver

Uncle Volodya says, "People reject what they do not understand because it makes them feel small. They would rather believe in some other reality, even if it is only an illusion, so long as it makes them feel bigger.”

Uncle Volodya says, “People reject what they do not understand because it makes them feel small. They would rather believe in some other reality, even if it is only an illusion, so long as it makes them feel bigger.”

Turn on your receiver,
I’m gonna lay it on the line;
‘cause I’m a great believer
in hangin’ on to what is mine
So come over here and listen;
I don’t want you to be missin’
What I say:
And I ain’t gonna waste my time
sayin’ it all again:

Turn on your receiver,
There’s a message comin’ through…

Nazareth, from “Turn On Your Receiver

This blog has been running for about five years now, long enough for me to think back a little nostalgically on why I started it. I had become fed up, like many others, with the relentlessly negative coverage of Russia in the English-speaking press, and some of it I knew to be false from having been there. Russia’s leader, Vladimir Putin, was singled out for particularly constant vitriol, and the descriptions of him as a money-grubbing plunderer and authoritarian dictator are greatly at odds with his public appearances. The silly trope that he is the richest man in Europe, and possibly the world, on money he has stolen from the Russian people has been debunked time and again – yet the western press, particularly in the UK, tirelessly and patiently rebuilds the legend of his breathtakingly-opulent Italianate palace, his penchant for crazy-money wristwatches, his secret shares of Russian energy companies and his equally-secret gymnast lover whom his nepotism has granted political office, so she will be close by in case he fancies a quick knee-trembler up against the wall in between hiking taxes on pensioners and giving himself another pay raise.

I started out cautiously, being only mildly critical, bearing in mind that I am a westerner myself and that on the whole, I like living where I live – I have no intention of fleeing to Moscow to be an angry dissident. I kept as my credo that once the press began to show some fairness, and once its coverage of Russia and Putin became somewhat more in line with the way it complains about everyone else, I would stop. I have things to do, after all.

But it didn’t improve. If anything, it got more strident and hectoring and comically absurd, I often wondered why people didn’t just burst into laughter and say, “Enough!” It’s so predictable now; prior to the winter Olympics at Sochi, the western press could not even show up for work without painting its car and its clothing and itself in the colours of the rainbow, and the drumbeat message was all-gay, all the time – Putin despised homosexuals, he had authored and approved draconian anti-gay laws so that the poor gay people could not even express their love for one another without being arrested and sent to prison. No examples were given, of course, because it was all another western tempest in a teapot, and I said several times, you watch; as soon as Sochi is over with, the gay issue is going to get dropped like a hot rock. And it was – don’t hear a word about it now, do you? It served its purpose, or served at least the effort to get the Olympics taken away from Russia and held someplace more gay. But the press lost interest as soon as that cause was hopeless, and as soon as it was no longer useful to make people stay away.

The west persistently and comically miscasts and misrepresents both Russia and its leader, and it has a captive audience because Russia makes only limited inroads on the English-speaking domain, mostly through RT, and even that is too much for the west and it regularly threatens to revoke its license because of all its “propaganda”. Meanwhile the U.S. State Department is caught lying on almost a daily basis in its media conferences, and confesses to relying on social media and activists’ reports to build its intelligence picture. Most recently, it has stood by NATO ally Turkey after that country shot down a Russian military aircraft which even the Turks stipulate was in its airspace for a total of 17 seconds. There is some doubt it was in Turkish airspace at all. As recently as 2012, when the Syrians shot down a Turkish F-4 which they said had violated Syrian airspace, Recep Erdogan – now President and then Prime Minister – grated angrily that a penetration of another country’s airspace which was of a short duration was “never an excuse for an attack”. Except now it is. Accusations by Putin that Turkey is involved in the illegal trafficking of oil stolen by ISIL or ISIS or Daesh, or whatever acronym we’re going to settle on, were backed up by solid satellite and video imagery. But they were airily dismissed by Washington, which would not stipulate even to having seen the evidence, referring to it as “pictures the Russians allegedly showed”.

The west does not listen. It is stuck permanently on “transmit”, and is too busy loudly broadcasting its own narrative and inventing ever-more-bloodcurdling tales to pay any attention to what Russia is saying. It has its fingers in its ears to prevent it from hearing anything which is at odds with The Narrative, and is so determined not to listen that it has gradually ceded the moral high ground, international law and global respect in exchange for a lot of roaring and screaming which it hopes will cover it until it has gotten its way. There will be time later to make believe that it was all about freedom and democracy.

Well, turn on your receiver, muttonheads. It might be your last chance.

So I was reminded upon reading a post sent to me by our resident Australian, or one of them, Jennifer Hor. This is a piece she did on Putin’s speech to the Final Plenary Session of the Valdai International Discussion Club, back in October of this year. Contrast Putin’s message of peaceful reconstruction and empowerment of the national population in Syria with the west’s cries to smash it and reapportion it so that various players get their own states, which can be set at convenience to warring with one another, a recipe for endless conflict. Jen?

“Compared to his speech at XI Meeting in 2014, this 2015 speech by Russian President Vladimir Putin isn’t quite as ground-breaking; but it is full of fire nevertheless. In his speech, Putin spiked the United States government and its elites for following a path that has not only led to war and instability around the world, and continues to do so, but which has the potential to spread poverty, ignorance, distrust and a degraded culture as well, one that celebrates and encourages even more chaos and brutality.

The theme of the XII Meeting was war and peace, and Putin had plenty to say about the current global drive towards war, driven in the main by the United States and its allies. Starting from a general perspective on the role of war as a catalyst for relieving tensions and re-organising and establishing new political, social and economic hierarchies in the world, Putin observed how the threat of war diminished in the period after the end of World War II in 1945 – a period in which diplomacy under the threat of nuclear war prevailed – until the Cold War ended in 1991 with the fall of the Soviet Union. Since then, diplomacy as a tool for resolving long-simmering tensions and conflicts has increasingly fallen by the wayside and the use of force by the United States to achieve its aims in different parts of the world, especially in the Middle East, has come to be the first resort. Along with this flexing of military muscle and the chaos, violence and brutality that have followed, comes the creation of economic blocs, based on neo-liberal economic ideologies, between and among nations with the signing of treaties whose details and implications are deliberately hidden away from the public and never discussed or mentioned until long after the ink used to sign the documents has dried. At the same time, governments, corporations and the media actively seek to withhold and censor information, analysis and opinion that oppose the aims of their agendas; plus they use databases and database networks to gather and share information about citizens and their families for various purposes which can include blackmail, psychological manipulation, marketing and pushing products and services for profit. Constant wars against terrorists and terrorist movements – themselves the consequence of US-led invasions of countries (and in the case of ISIS, possibly the creation of the US government and its agencies, to serve as a substitute army keeping Middle Eastern countries weak and divided) – result in the displacement of people in those countries, leading them to flee in their thousands to Western countries, usually by any means available (no matter how hazardous and expensive), which are not only reluctant to offer safe haven to them but actively and aggressively throw them back into the seas or imprison them in detention centres where they face abuse, violence and death from fellow refugees or prison guards working under stress. The refugee crisis is used by Western governments to whip up hatred and prejudice against refugees, and to encourage and escalate public support for more invasions of the countries being destabilised to “stop” the refugee flow.

Putin singled out the example of Syria where the process of regime change, starting in 2011 with the aim of ousting President Bashar al Assad, in ways similar to the Kiev Maidan revolution against President Viktor Yanukovych in Ukraine over 2013 and early 2014, is in full swing with takfiri fighters belonging to groups such as Islamic State, Jabhat al Nusra and other al Qa’ida offshoots, all funded and armed by foreign governments, fighting the Syrian Arab Army. Putin observed that such terrorist groups are hard to fight if they are being used as a de facto army to overthrow governments that, coincidentally, the US and its friends do not like.

Putin went on to say that Russia launched a military operation in the form of airstrikes on the Islamic extremists at the request of the Syrian government. Russia understands that if the terrorists in Syria win, they will send many of their number to Russia itself, in particular into the vulnerable region of Dagestan and its surrounds. Putin emphasized that the world must support the revival of Syria and Iraq, and assist in their reconstruction and revitalization of their institutions. A plan must be developed for these countries’ reconstruction, for the restoration of their infrastructures, their hospitals, housing and schools. This is an opportunity for all countries throughout the world to come together and offer assistance to these two long-suffering nations. What is most noteworthy about Putin’s speech at this point is its emphasis on the Syrian people as the major party in deciding Syria’s future and deserving respect, civil treatment and autonomy in the decisions they make about their institutions and future from the rest of the world.

While the theme of the XII Meeting may have been war and peace, the theme of Putin’s speech is that for peace to reign, nations must co-operate together, respect one another and trust one another and in the rule of international law. This is very much a speech that follows from his speech at the XI Meeting in 2014. The fact that Putin ended his 2015 speech by speaking of renewal, restoration, hope and opportunity, and the hard work that must be done to achieve revival, demonstrates that he and his government are looking beyond helping Syria get rid of ISIS and other terrorists, and stabilising the country. An opportunity for Syria to become a model of reconstruction, renewal and reconciliation for the Middle East and the wider world is present and ready for the taking. How many Western politicians can be said to be as forward-looking as Putin? Given the way in which the US has blundered in the Middle East and north Africa over the past decade and how Germany brought chaos and confusion when it offered a haven to thousands of Syrian refugees stuck in Turkey, with no apparent thought for how to bring them over or how they would be settled, it seems that having a vision of the future and achieving it is something beyond Western leaders’ capabilities – to the detriment of the West.”

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497 Responses to Turn On Your Receiver

  1. Moscow Exile says:

    News that escapes the world’s headlines …

    In this morning’s “Kremlin controlled”* Komsomolskaya Pravda article Пока вы спали [While you slept], this little snippet:

    Обама продлил временное финансирование правительства до 16 декабря

    Obama has extended temporary government funding until December 16

    Budget negotiations continue

    U.S. President Barack Obama has signed a resolution extending temporary funding of the Federal Government until December 16, and to that day will continue budget negotiations, reports the Agency Reuters…

    It should be recalled that in October 2013, owing to protracted disputes on the state budget, the USA had to temporarily close many state institutions and their employees were forced to go on unpaid leave.

    That shutdown of the Federal Government lasted 16 days.

    See: Obama, Congress avert federal shutdown

    * Following standard Porky Pie News procedure, this expression has been placed before the title of a Russian news medium.

  2. Moscow Exile says:

    re Russian navy “rust tubs” according to mocking Western internet commentators, armchair warriors, computer war-game trolls et al:


    USNS Grapple tows USS Milwaukee, LCS-5, to Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek, Va. on Friday, December 11, 2015. LCS-5 suffered an engine casualty while in transit.

    The Navy’s newest ship breaks down, limps into port

    What the hell is an “engine casualty”?

    Do they mean it broke down?

    • marknesop says:

      I imagine it is a mistake on the part of the journalist, and the navy’s statement was “an engineering casualty”. Yes, they mean a breakdown, but it could mean anything from thermal stress failure of a major engine component to a complete failure of the main switchboard, one of those being an engineering failure and the other electrical, but both coming under the masthead of “engineering”. There might be a variety of reasons for this, but among them are the navy’s desire for confidentiality, in which it declines to be too specific in case it inadvertently discloses a vulnerability (this is just instinctive) to the possibility the ship has not yet been accepted and is still on trials. In those circumstances, until the navy signs on the dotted line much of the equipment still belongs to the contractor, and is not the navy’s responsibility to fix if it breaks.

      Nearly all the navy vessels now – at least destroyers, frigates and cruisers – are powered by gas turbine engines, which essentially are aviation engines made to drive a shaft through a similar principle of axial rotation. They’re generally very reliable and easy to operate but more and more things are designed to be repair-by-replacement rather than stokers actually taking them apart at sea and fixing the broken part or actually making a new part on board, although some stuff is like that. Most of the electronic stuff is like that, too – repair by card replacement, where you just pull the circuit card and put in a new one.

      If the navy had chosen to not make a big deal of it, they could have done that, too, because towing another ship is a required seamanship skill and all modern navies practice it regularly even in the case that there is nothing wrong with the ship being towed; frequently the engines are not even shut down, just not turning the shafts.

      The LCS, though, is a Littoral Combat Ship, a relatively new breed of two types, the FREEDOM Class and the INDEPENDENCE Class. Oddly enough, so far as I know, they have never had a DEMOCRACY Class, and a REGIME CHANGE Class would just be naughty. But as I have mentioned before, several modern navies attacked the littoral combat concept at more or less the same time. The US Navy’s solution was, like many American resolutions, in the end much larger and far more costly than the original vision. The INDEPENDENCE type have suffered serious post-acceptance corrosion problems. MILWAUKEE, though, is the other type. Engineering failures are embarrassing – I remember HMCS CALGARY was once stuck in Singapore for weeks owing to persistent generator failures, so that the Field Service Representatives (FSR’s) had to fly out to service her there. It sounds like a dream come true, but crew members told me later that it did not take long to run out of money in Singapore, and then there’s nothing to do and it’s beastly hot, which is not a good combination. Anyway, those problems do occur. Russian naval ships are generally designed to a common Soviet naval vision philosophy – system redundancy, so that there are two of all the important things, and built generally simple and rugged so they can be maintained by people who have had a minimum of training. Their overall reliability is quite good. Western “analysts” sneer at them because that’s just what they do.

  3. Moscow Exile says:

    So if you want to get a train from Moscow to Vilnius, Lithuania, after December 12 – forget it!

    Lithuania has announced the cancellation of that service as from that date.

    Литва отменила железнодорожный маршрут между Вильнюсом и Москвой

    If you want to go to Lithuania after tomorrow, you have to go via Kalingrad.

    Russia further isolated !!!!!

    Next thing, there’ll be no Moscow trains to Tallinn, Riga and Helsinki!

    Russia is doomed!

    • kirill says:

      This fits the empirical law that IQ is inversely proportional to bravado. These chihuahuas are yapping themselves into a foaming frenzy. Russia needs to embargo them like the USA embargoed Cuba.

  4. Moscow Exile says:

    The British press kills me!

    Notice how the actions of certain Kiev Rada delegates are admirably described as those perpetrated by politicians in “one European country”, which actions are presented as a warning to pig fancier Dave.

  5. Moscow Exile says:

    Russia is a country where it’s not about what happens to its inhabitants: the main thing is to show your Imperial aplomb. These people never thought about their ordinary citizens. The propaganda they have used is for domestic consumption: Here – look at how strong I am! But the stupidest thing Putin has done is that he has cut off all ties with Turkey, which supplied food to the Russian Federation and the Crimea.

    He has again raised his rating over this Turkish business, but all over the world they just laugh about it” – Dzhemilev.

    • marknesop says:

      Gosh!! Mustafa is so wise, isn’t he? He certainly doesn’t spend his money on clothes, so he must have spent it on college. Where he learned, no doubt, that Turkey is the principal supplier of food to the Russian Federation, and it will now be unable to get food from anywhere else. Sorry for you, starving Russians!

      “The Russian Federation ranked sixth among Turkey’s most preferred exports destination in 2012, and the ratio of Turkey’s export to the Russian Federation was approximately 5% of its total export in that year. According to the data provided by TUSKON, exports from Turkey reached USD 7.3 billion in 2013. The largest export categories are (i) textile, fabrics, manufactured goods, (ii) vegetables and fruits and (iii) vehicles.”

      http://seelegal.org/upload/documents/Turkey/Commercial%20Relations%20Between%20Turkey%20and%20The%20Russian%20Federation.pdf

  6. Moscow Exile says:

    Oleg Barna with Mikheil Saakashvili on the Shuster TV-show set.

    Barna the ball-crusher!

  7. Lyttenburgh says:

    Meanwhile – more jolly good news from sunny Finlandia!

    – Neo-Nazis patrolling the streets in five different cities: Pori, Oulu, Tampere, Lahti and Hyvinkää

    – Ten cases of fire emergencies in refugee centers during the autumn. Six are considered attempted arson (like that incident when someone set fire to a building that was housing 150-180 refugees. The building was mostly wood, so it’s been completely destroyed), two involving smoke bombs are considered pranks and the final two are probably accidents.

    – Someone apparently tried to burn down the apartment of a Polish guy, working on one of our nuclear power plants. Because of reasons.

    – Finnish police union is getting very tired with the refugee centers, patrols often greeted by a hostile group of young refugee men when responding to a call.

    Why, we have a very Finnish poster right here on KS! Karl – can you please, for a change, describe the refugee-housing situation in your country?

    Also – this:

  8. yalensis says:

    Sorry for the self-spam, but I just did a post on the Yats Crotch story which I think has a slightly different slant on it, and an important piece of that Giant Bald Puzzle which is our beloved Veruca.

      • marknesop says:

        During these years he was supposed to have been at Chernivtsi University and then Aval Bank in Kiev. Surely there must be records; it sounds shaky. And that picture could be anyone with even similar features. it’s just hard to imagine because he’s such a twat – I can’t imagine him finding his way around his own backyard in the dark, never mind skulking through the mountains killing professional trained soldiers.

      • et Al says:

        If this is humor, its pretty poor. If its’ propaganda, its’ worse. Pointless.

        • yalensis says:

          I don’t understand the skepticism. UNA-UNSO is a Ukrainian neo-Nazi organization associated with Roman Shukhevych and others of his ilk. They have been involved in every anti-Russian action since 1990, in LIthuania, Chechnya, Ukraine, and other places.
          These people have ties with neo-Nazis from the other countries of the former Soviet bloc.

          Is the skepticism about UNA-UNSO’s ties with Chechen jihadis? It is a known fact that these people work together.
          Or is the skepticism about Yatsenyuk personally?
          People doubt that he could be involved with these people – why the doubt?
          Bastrykin says that he has solid evidence.

          • marknesop says:

            As I said, if he has solid evidence, he should run with it. It’s possible. I don’t doubt Yatsie would torture and kill a Russian if he found one lying hurt on the street. I just can’t see him hiking around in the mountains pulling off daring deeds against well-trained military men and being victorious, living to tell the tale – he doesn’t look like he could fight his way out of a tub of jello. Yes, it’s Yats personally; I thought I made that clear.

    • Special_sauce says:

      yalensis, whatever happened with that gal charged with war crimes?

      • Lyttenburgh says:

        Nadezhda Savchenko? Apparently, still under trial. Also – still Verkhovna Rada’s Deputy. Not sure if she is still on a hunger strike😉

      • yalensis says:

        Dear Special_sauce:
        Not sure. I stopped “covering” Nadia’s trial after just a couple of days.
        I had a solid determination to do it, and the first couple of days I faithfully plowed through and translated the blow-by-blow from whatever paper it was, I forget – Gazeta.ru, maybe? — but then even THEY lost interest, and they’re a kreakl paper, and they sent their correspondents home and stopped covering it.

        I think the kreakls sort of lost interest in Nadia very quickly, maybe (1) they saw up close that she is mentally ill, or (2) they couldn’t afford the hotel bills in Krasnodar, or (3) maybe it’s because Nadia is not physically attractive. (The corollary to “missing white girl syndrome” is that the girl martyr has to be young, thin, and pretty, or at least 2 out of 3.)
        or (4) for all the above reasons, the kreakl press realized that Nadezhda is not the Joan of Arc who was predicted by the prophets that would bring down the Russian government.

        Long story short:
        After they lost interest, I lost interest too.
        Sorry, dude!

  9. Warren says:

    The mystery of the 24 Dutch Golden Age paintings

    12 December 2015 Last updated at 01:36 GMT

    Eleven years ago, 24 Dutch Golden Age paintings disappeared from a regional museum in the north-west Netherlands.

    In July this year two representatives of a right-wing Ukrainian militia turned up at the Dutch Embassy in Kiev demanding 50m euros (£36m) for the return of the paintings.

    Gabriel Gatehouse has been delving into a murky world where art theft and Eastern European politics collide.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-35077569

    • marknesop says:

      An extremely believable story, I’m sure you will agree. The “Militia commander” who initially contacted the Dutch claims he does not even know who the people are who have the paintings – they called him, he says, and he has never met them and doesn’t know who they are. But they must have had quite the candid chinwag when they did first call him, because they bothered to tell him the paintings were found in eastern Ukraine some place that was under the control of the “Russian-backed separatists” and that they had been stolen by someone connected at a very high level to Yanukovych. Who lived in Kiev, but naturally hid them somewhere in eastern Ukraine, 700 kilometers away, perhaps out of nostalgia for his boyhood years. What a tit. If you’re looking for someone to write believable plots for mystery stories, you know who not to call.

  10. Moscow Exile says:

    On a brighter note …

    Dyed Moroz will soon be here!!!!

    Central Moscow today, Manezh Square.

    That’s the State Historical Museum in the background, which museum backs onto Red Square.

    To the left is the Resurrection Gate leading on to Red Square.

    Just visible right centre of the fir tree is the equestrian statue of Marshal Zhukov. The marshal is now in the process of being bedecked in his winter great coat.

    The booths are part of the “New Year Fair”, which is open from today until 11 January – the first day back at work in the New year.

    They have been doing this Russian version of a German “Christkindlmarkt” for a couple of years now.

  11. Warren says:

  12. Moscow Exile says:

    Последний крик стервятника

    The last cry of a vulture

    After the death of his mentor André Glucksmann, levy is the Parisian “Pope of fools”, of all those adherents of political correctness, multiculturalism and liberal interventionism. This man can rightly be considered as one of the bloodiest of philosophers in history, he having been personally involved in the outbreak of a dozen wars and genocides.

    In 1993: inciting the American intervention in Bosnia against the Serbs.

    1995-1999: noisy support for the “Ichkeria freedom fighters” and the call for Western countries to officially recognize the regime of the Maskhadov-Basayev gang.

    1999: support of the terrorist Albanian “liberation Army of Kosovo” and agitation for NATO aggression against Serbia.

    2008: Levi perhaps Saakashvili’s best friend and a warmonger in Ossetia.

    The “Arab spring” begins and the vulture revolution is here. Instigating the invasion of the Western coalition in Libya, he writes inspirational messages of “save Aleppo!”, launching the bloody flywheel in Syria.

    Kiev, Maidan: “the philosopher” from the podium urges people to stand up to Putin and not to be shy in the media about making a “revolution”.

    And here the apotheosis: February 2015, Kramatorsk — Bernard Henri levy together with Petro Poroshenko, lean over a map at the shelling of Gorlovka; the two figures discuss how to get their act together so as to churn out even more children’s corpses.

    This epitome of liberal fascism, Bernard Henri levy, has proven to the world that it should not expect any peace and freedom from Western left-liberalism.

    • PaulR says:

      To quote Jacques Mallet du Pan, “A l’exemple de Saturne, la révolution dévore ses enfants”. I make this the third rebel leader to die in mysterious circumstances – Batman, Mozgovoi, and now Dremov. The conspiracy theories will soon emerge.

      • yalensis says:

        Not to mention all the attempts against Givi. But that guy is like a cat: He has 9 lives.

      • marknesop says:

        Remember the attempt to kill “separatist leader” Denis Pushilin, back in the summer of 2014? Russian-speaking Ukrainians abound in Ukraine, and I imagine eastern Ukraine is thoroughly infiltrated by Kiev’s hit squads, watching for their chance to kill rebel leaders. And it will likely be that way forever after, or at least it will not stop until the easterners start exacting some payback in west-Ukrainian towns or keeping a closer eye on who is who in their own areas. But the latter strategy contributes to an oppressive security-state atmosphere which would be played up by the western press as a sign of a “neo-Soviet crackdown” in the DPR. I suppose if they caught the perpetrators they could always hang them. That’s usually a pretty good deterrent.

    • marknesop says:

      We all recall General Wesley Clark for his co-authorship of the Clark-Karber Report – with the idiot Philip Karber, he who led the Ukrainian delegation that tried to roll the Senate Armed Services Committee with photos of columns of Russian tanks in Georgia in 2008, except presented as in Ukraine 2014 – and its clarion call for east-European nations to send as much of their ex-Soviet hardware, artillery, tanks and aircraft as they could spare to Ukraine. That was at a time when the uprising in the east of Ukraine was just a handful of people occupying some municipal government buildings. Clark has been howling for war since long before it ever began to look like a war.

      Nice to see they noticed that civilian cities and towns are getting worked over by artillery. How many of those cities and towns are in central or western Ukraine? What, none? Then that must mean they are all in eastern Ukraine. So are we back to “the separatists are shelling their own cities for sympathy”?

      I certainly don’t have to tell you that the National Post is a hardcore Conservative newspaper, which has been cheering for NATO, arming of Ukraine and more war since the outset.

      • kirill says:

        Foaming at the mouth lunatic neocons are part of the Canadian mainstream media. Voices that oppose the insanity are “fringe”.

  13. Moscow Exile says:

    Hey! Look over here! Don’t miss what’s happening here!!!

    Ukrainian foreign minister: Ukraine has swapped captured Russian general in Donbas for the Ukrainian serviceman

    That’s Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin who is fond of fawning over the US Ambassador to the UN Horror Comic.

    Russia denies this swap, of course.

      • Moscow Exile says:

        Минобороны РФ опровергло сообщение об обмене российского генерала на украинского военного

        Not a single Russian general has either been or is a prisoner in the Ukraine. This was stated by the official representative of the Russian Defence Ministry, Major-General Igor Konashenkov.

        “The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Ukraine, Pavlo Klimkin, speaking on December 11 at a meeting of the UN Security Council said that there had been an ‘exchange’ last week of a ‘Russian general’ for a member of the Ukrainian military ..

        ‘We exchanged last week a Russian general for one of our military. Of course, Russia can say that Elvis Presley is alive, but no amount of lies will change the actual facts’, he said.”

        The Russian Defence Ministry statement called what he said a ‘gaffe’.

        “It is difficult to say what effect Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin sought to gain by referring in vain to Elvis Presley at a meeting of the UN Security Council.

        Perhaps he wanted to outshine Arseniy Yatsenyuk’s acrobatics in the rada yesterda?

        As always, he turns up with some kind of performance…

        There are and never have been any Russian generals held as prisoners in the Ukraine. And it is unforgivable that the Minister of Foreign Affairs is unaware of this. However, the true reason underlying this gaffe is not difficult to guess.

        Our Ukrainian colleagues very much like to speak to foreign audiences not in their native tongue (or in Russian, of which they have a perfect command), but in mediocre English.

        Such linguistic knowledge that they have, multiplied by their insatiable ambition, when translated from Ukrainian into English, has converted the general military term ‘major’ into ‘Major General’.

        The only thing that we can absolutely support as regards what Klimkin said yesterday is that ‘no amount of lies will change the actual facts’. That was probably a freudian slip on his part …

        • marknesop says:

          Ukraine’s tactic is painfully transparent, because it is a one-trick pony. Inflammatory Ukie politicians make a wild statement, followed immediately by, “of course Russia will lie about it”. Then anything Russia says is just the expected lie, while silence implies assent. Yawn. Is any of this posturing and stupidity going to keep Ukrainians warm and fat this winter? I doubt it. Let the histrionics play on – jump up and down if you’re cold.

  14. Lyttenburgh says:

    You gonna laugh – but Gusskaya democratic opposition decided to unite once again and topple the Bloody Regime in the upcoming 2016 elections!

    Look, look into their bright and hopeful faces – and eyes full of centuries-long saddness!

    True patriots of Russia – Kasyanov and Ponomaryov – listening to sage words of Aunty Nullie:

    Meanwhile – oppos, dissidents, shy intilligents, brave hipsters, gays and democratic journos are experiencing a true shock – former aide of the chief editor of the extremly handshakable “Ekho Mosckvy” Lesya Riabtzeva is tearing down the veils of deception, hung masterfully by infamous democrats and (snicker) liberals:

    “Я — красивая и крутая. Ходорковский — удав и манипулятор. Навальный — политический импотент. Венедиктов — дедушка. Касьянов — зассал. Собчак — завидует. Коллеги — ничтожества. Оппозиция — говно. Лавров — трудоголик. Песков — впахивает. Путин — мой президент. “

    Transl:
    “Me – beautiful and cool. Khodorkovsky – a boa constrictor and a manipulator. Navalniy – political impotent. Venediktov – grandpa. Kasyanov – wet his pants. Sobchak – envious. Colleagues – nothingness. The opposition – shit. Lavrov – a workaholic. Peskov – works hard. Putin – my president.”

    Source: https://meduza.io/shapito/2015/12/12/lesya-ryabtseva-razoblachaet-oppozitsiyu-na-ntv-v-odnom-abzatse

    P.S. Ladies and gentelmen! Your bets on the potential “Ryabceva vs Sobchak” catfight, s’il vous plait!

    • Moscow Exile says:

      Any forecasts on the single figure percentage of votes cast that these chumps will receive?

      • Lyttenburgh says:

        Well, Kasyanov was know as “Misha 2%” for a reason. I won’t give them more than that. Yeah, I know – I’m an optimist!

      • Moscow Exile says:

        This blog below was written by someone who would fall sucker to what the above shysters try to sell them. The sentiments expressed by the blogger reveal the unworldly naiveté of a schoolchild, the the blogger is, no doubt, some artistic dreamer:

        Что я хочу пожелать России в главный день страны

        What I should wish Russia on the the main day of the country

        prosto_vova
        December 12th, 18:00

        Russia, I want you to become like this. This is my dream.

        It will be a country in which its citizens are of the highest value.

        A country that exists in order to protect it citizens and help them.

        A country in which the state exists in order that the ambulance and fire service operate, that the roads are clean and that the police prevent crimes rather than provoke them.

        Where laws are made that will make the lives of people easier and not complicate them.

        Where all people are equally important and are not divided according to nationality, sexual type, or proximity to power.

        Here any person will have the right to his opinion and entitled to express his views.

        It will be a peaceful country in which the army serves solely to guard the borders and for the educating the spirit of youth.

        It will be a country that finally realizes that to build any relationship a system of Win-Win is not necessary and that any system other than Win-Win is doomed to failure.

        A country in which to be a businessman, a doctor or a scientist and not just a bureaucrat is to have respected profession.

        A country that finally recognizes the crimes of the Soviet regime, recognizes its victims and repents for them.

        Where the government will be elected and will be renewed by ordinary citizens.

        A country that will not prohibit its citizens from travelling abroad, but, on the contrary, a state programme will provide trips to other countries at state expense, so that people can see how the world lives.

        A country that produces ideas, rather than sucking them out of elsewhere and then reselling what it has sucked out.

        A country in which one can live happily, because happiness makes citizens good natured.

        Damn, how I wish Russia were like this.

        On Constitution Day, friends.

        God willing, we shall survive.

        The person who wrote the above must never have travelled abroad and, for some reason or other, thinks that foreign travel is prohibited to Russian citizens.

        The naive person who wrote the above must believe all the Western crap he sees or hears about the wondrous freedoms that exist there.

        The key sentiment above is, I believe, the one about repentance for the crimes perpetrated by the Soviet Union.

        Germany sought repentance, was re-educated and forgiven, hence the wonderfully rich and successful and liberal land that Germany now is, whereas Russia has never asked for forgiveness, albeit that the crimes the blogger refers to were not “committed” by Russia.

        This sad blogger is one of those, I am sure, whom I have on occasion met here and who, on finding out my nationality, instantly wails: “Why was I born a Russian?”

        Such persons then usually become perplexed when I tell them that I live in Russia because I like living in Russia, whereupon they reply: “But it’s easy for you! You can leave any time you wish”.

        I agree with them on that point, but am at pains then to point out that I have not left Russia for 23 years, and that means, in most cases, that I have lived in Russia longer than my interlocutor who is bemoaning the fact that he was born a Russian.

        I ask them if they think there are bums, junkies, alkies in the UK, in France and in Germany and in the USA who live on the street.

        Surprisingly, they often seem to think there are not or if there are, then their number is statistically insignificant.

        Dreamers!

        • Moscow Exile says:

          Forgot to mention that the above blog was posted because today,12 December, is Constitution Day here, so, rather belatedly, because it is now 23:00 Moscow time and already the 13th in most of this vast country:

    • marknesop says:

      You were right – I did laugh. Is that all these people do all year? Plot and scheme and fly back and forth between Moscow and Washington? The money must be good! Because none of these twits seems to have a job; they’re just full-time malcontents and paid political complainers despite not holding any elected office. It seems to perpetually escape them that if they produced a list of reforms they intended to carry out which was in line with the people’s desires, together with a plan which detailed how they would accomplish these so that the people would increase their personal freedom without taking any kind of hit in their standard of living (assuming it did not include selling out to a foreign power), they would be legitimately elected.

      • Lyttenburgh says:

        Marc, so-called “Russian non-system opposition” (I just can’t call something which includes “National-Democrat” Navalniy “liberal”) consists slightly less than entirely not of politicians who wants to reall win the elections (“They will be rigged anyway!” (c)), but of professional gesheftmeisters, who’ve perfected the art of “funds appropriation” and who lead perfect parasytic lifestyles, as some sort of gurus and “spiritiual leaders” of the totalitarian sects.

        And the West just can’t cut them loose – no matter how they are ineffective – because this will “give the wrong signal” to both the “regime” and “freedom fighters” around the world. So, ironically, chief junkes and grant-addicts are not liberasrs – but their handlers, who simply can’t stop financing them.

    • Oddlots says:

      I like the nicknames. Could have gone farther IMO.

  15. Warren says:

  16. Special_sauce says:

    OT: Duolingo now does Russian! Russophones, please assess.

  17. Moscow Exile says:

    The hand of the Kremlin

  18. Lyttenburgh says:

    This is so beatiful, that should be immortalized in stone for the future generations of kreakls, emo-patriots, hipsters, libertarians, shy and modest intilligents and Navalny’s war-hamsters. I present to you the Shining Light of Honest Journalism and Angel of “Ukho Washingtona” “Ekho Mosckvi” Evgenia Markovna Albatz!

    P.S. “Другой оппозиции у меня для вас нет” ™

    • Moscow Exile says:

      If it’s genuine, then she must have been pissed out of shape when she made that tweet.


      Albats bidet perhaps?

      • Lyttenburgh says:

        Apparently it is genuine. Happened in “Novaya Gazeta” office building after a huge “let’s get shit-faced!” handshakable party, celebrating 20 years of this very honest Independent Media ™ source:

        • yalensis says:

          Lemme translate for the non-Russki-reading peoples:

          Evgenia Albats tweeted: “At the party celebrating the 20-th anniversary of Novaya Gazeta, somebody opened up my purse and stole my iPAD. It’s horrible. Return my iPAD, you fucks!”

          Later tweet: “Never mind, I’m just an old cunt. I found my iPad. I was drunk and left it by mistake there yesterday on the bidet in the ladies room.”

          Could have been worse: She could have accused Putin of stealing her iPAD!

  19. Pingback: RUSSIA & UKRAINE – Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2015-#237 :: Tuesday 8 December 2015 – Johnson's Russia List

  20. et Al says:

    Neuters: Blasts near hospital in Syria’s Homs city kill 16
    http://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-mideast-crisis-syria-blast-idUKKBN0TV0BM20151212

    Twin explosions in a government-controlled neighbourhood of Syria’s Homs city killed at least 16 people and wounded scores more on Saturday, a group monitoring the war and state media said, in an attack claimed by the hardline Islamic State group….

    …The second large blast, originally suspected to have been a bomb, appeared to have come from an exploding gas canister and hit people who had come to tend to victims of the first explosion in the densely-populated neighbourhood, state media said…
    ####

    Booby traps on timers left behind. What lovely rebels. I guess they’ll be filing their asylum applications with the help of British civil servants in the coming days…

    • yalensis says:

      Cartoon is stupid. Is a deflection, just trying to muddy the waters by making people think there is senseless donnybrook with no clear sides.

      In reality, there are 2 clear sides:
      -On the one side: IS + rebels + Turkey + (Western) Allies
      -On the other side: Assad + Hizbullah + Kurds + Russia

      • Moscow Exile says:

        There are very many similar cartoons doing the rounds in the blogosphere that follow the same theme, namely nobody knows who is fighting whom.

        All part of the West’s brainwashing machinery?

  21. Warren says:

  22. PaulR says:

    My critique of the latest nonsense from the International Institute for Strategic Studies and Prof Timothy Snyder: https://irrussianality.wordpress.com/2015/12/12/the-alternative-reality-of-propaganda/

    • Moscow Exile says:

      Snyder’s name derives from the German “Schneider”, meaning “sewer” or “tailor”.

      And that’s “sewer” [/səʊwə(r)/], as in “a person who sews” and not “sewer” [/ˈsuːə(r)/], meaning an underground conduit for shit

      However, he is well named, for whenever I see his family name, I cannot but help think of the term “snidey”.

      I do not know whether that term is used in the US English vernacular, but Snyder really is, in my opinion, a “snidey bastard”.

      snidey bastard = sly shit.

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