Get in There and Win One For Mom and Apple Pie: Non-Combatant Molly McKew Pounds the War Drum

Uncle Volodya says,

Uncle Volodya says, “Given a choice, it seems like pity would be easier to bear than mockery, but that’s not true. Mockery hardens defenses; pity slips through, finds the softest places you have, and slices to the bone. Pity will break you, every time.”

Man is the only animal that deals in that atrocity of atrocities, War. He is the only one that gathers his brethren about him and goes forth in cold blood and calm pulse to exterminate his kind.

He is the only animal that for sordid wages will march out and help to slaughter strangers of his own species who have done him no harm, and with whom he has no quarrel.

And in the intervals between campaigns he washes the blood off his hands, and works for the universal brotherhood of man with his mouth.

-Mark Twain

It is a phenomenon that is none the less remarkable for the frequency of its observation that none is so enthusiastic an endorser of armed combat and violence as he – or she – who has little or no personal acquaintance with  military service, and is among the least likely to participate if her earnest advocacy for war bears fruit.

The poster-child for this philosophy is Molly McKew, of The Washington Free Beacon and Politico, and former adviser to deposed Georgian president Mikhail Saakashvili. Right up until his people kicked him out of the saddle, in fact, in favour of eccentric billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili. And now, as another eccentric billionaire is preparing to take over the reins of power in the United States, Ms. McKew joins luminaries of the Make War, Not Love Club Samantha Power and Susan Rice in advocating military action to stop Russia’s Vladimir Putin, because the United States has not depended on diplomacy for so long that it now stinks out loud at it and has no international credibility. When the only tool in the toolbox of the tough is a hammer, the tough get going, and all that.

Ms. McKew gives us a guided tour of her philosophy in “Putin’s Real Long Game”, for Politico, and it is already piling up rave reviews in her Twitter feed from the usual Amerika-Uber-Alles types, such as Catherine Fitzpatrick.

It turns out – not to be a spoiler, or anything – that Putin’s long game looks remarkably like what is customarily the long game for the United States; ensuring by various non-violent means a receptiveness to national interests. Although when the United States does it, it should not be imagined to be sinister in any way, because the United States is a dedicated international philanthropist which consistently works for mutual benefit, and would never abuse a trade-based economic arrangement for its own benefit or use the threat of its mighty military to intimidate an ally into compliance. Whereas Vladimir Putin’s foreign policy boils down to sucking the life-force from hapless countries too weak to resist his bony-fingered embrace, like the pitiful Podlings in The Dark Crystal.

What makes this interesting is not so much the dog-whistle appeals to exceptionalism and good ol’ American can-do, because those are the perennial Hallmark card to the low-information reader that we have become accustomed to. No, what makes this a noteworthy piece is its tentative bellwether sucking up to Trump, who will succeed to the Presidency of the United States despite a cacophony of caterwauling from the neoconservatives who lusted after the war-hammer of Hillary Clinton. Having painted Trump with excrement and ridicule daily in the full expectation that he would lose, America’s War Party must now explore how they might best make use of him to return to the pleasant pastime of perpetual war. Thus Trump becomes an unconventional thinker rather than a self-absorbed simpleton; a rough-hewn individualist rather than a maudlin bumpkin, as out of place as a rap star at an IPO after-party. The apparent aim is a no-hard-feelings attempt to co-opt Trump to the cause of returning Russia to its also-ran box.

Let’s take a look at it, shall we?

Ms. McKew leads in with a poignant sniffle that revolutionaries no longer feel a special affinity with the west, and muses that it might be a weakening of the belief in collective defense (spelt N.A.T.O), or perhaps the certitude that western values would prevail.

And that’s a controversial viewpoint, right off the bat. For one, I don’t know why revolutionaries would lose faith in the west, since it – and most especially Washington – is a reliable money-pot for would-be regime-changers; generally free with the lucre so long as the object of overthrow is a designated annoyance or obstacle to western domination. You’d never know that from reading Molly, though – she confidently assesses that ISIS has its roots in Moscow. As for the contention that revolutionaries feel safe in trusting ‘western values’ will eventually prevail like the sun coming out after weeks of rain, that, too, is a controversial viewpoint. It seems to me that it is Russia which has come round to the policy that international law should rule – and, ideally,  prevent – conflict, while it is Washington which has embraced a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants approach which treats international law as a nice-to-have only so long as it does not restrict the United States in anything it wants to do.

That’s as may be; Molly wants you to know that unless NATO hardens the fuck up and starts acting like a military force rather than some kind of frigging focus group, consequences such as the Baltics’ trembling terror of invasion by Russia will only compound and snowball – in the interests of all that is right and good, NATO and its natural leader, America, must step into Vladimir Putin’s path, and cry “Enough!!”

The Baltics – and fellow sentinels on the toxic fringes of Mordor, Ukraine – are terrified to jelly that Putin will rise up at any moment and crush them, due to his repeated displays of covetous violence over the last decade. Like the invasion of Georgia. Well, after Georgia first invaded a protectorate to which Russia had given security guarantees, and in which the UN had agreed to place Russian peacekeepers at the request of the inhabitants.

Which brings to mind another curiosity, this time associated with behavior. What form do your actions take when you fear a violent reaction from a powerful opponent? Are you liable to be conciliatory, or will you behave provocatively, wiggling your fingers in front of your nose and yelling “Nya, nya!!!”, figuratively speaking? Perhaps someone can explain to me why Latvia refuses to allow a third of its ethnic-Russian inhabitants to vote; many Russians who have lived in Latvia since the Soviet occupation do not have the benefits of citizenship.  While the explainer is at it, I’d like to know why the EU accepted the Baltics for accession, knowing that all three discriminate to various degrees against their ethnic-Russian minorities. I mean, wasn’t that sort of thing once a big human-rights issue for Europeans? Similarly, Lithuania’s president regularly offers tough talk as if she can’t wait to mix it up with Putin, while her government threatens to cut off rail and road access to Kaliningrad, and deliberately complicates visa procedures for Russians who have to cross EU territory coming or going. None of these are the actions of terrified people, while for its part Moscow has said several times it has no interest in subjugating the Baltics. Yet the myth prevails that the Russians are coming.

Ukraine certainly doesn’t act very scared, appointing a special council of experts to assess which books in the Russian language ought to be banned and loosening its rules of engagement for the air force so that Russian aircraft can be shot down on sight.

Like the hopelessly dysfunctional Democratic party, Ms. McKew speaks of the insidious tactics of 21st-century cyberwarfare used by Russia to flip the American presidential election to Trump as if they were a fact rather than wild imagination wedded to embarrassment. No less an informed source than John McAfee, developer of the world-renowned McAfee anti-virus software, scoffs at this as ridiculous, which it is; the Clinton machine merely wants to distract you from her barefaced lying that she had no classified material on her illegal and unforgivably carelessly-managed private server, by painting her as the helpless victim of Vladimir the Internet Marauder. The sheer hysterical proportions this has taken on were highlighted just the other day, when the Governor of Vermont squealed that the state’s power grid had been hacked by the Russians, in an attempt to seize control of America’s electricity and freeze its citizens to death. It transpired that nothing of the kind had happened,  that the computer which had been hacked was not connected to the power grid at all but belonged to an employee, that the malware was likely Ukrainian in origin and that the computer’s owner had visited some naughty Ukrainian websites. Thanks to irresponsible, wild-eyed reporting like this, Americans are seeing Russians beneath their beds at night like they never did, even during the frostiest depths of the Cold War.

Molly wants you to know that the war America is already in – so your only choice is whether you will fight or surrender, because the choice to commit the nation to battle has already been made for you – “…seeks, at home and abroad, to erode our values, our democracy, and our institutional strength; to dilute our ability to sort fact from fiction, or moral right from wrong; and to convince us to make decisions against our own best interests.

Here’s an open invitation, Molly; explain that in greater detail. I promise you your answers will not be censored or altered. I would like to know, more specifically, how Russia’s opposition to America trampling roughshod over the world as the whim takes it erodes America’s values, both at home and abroad. What, exactly, are America’s values? Let’s take a look. At each ‘value’ cited, I invite you to ask yourself how Russia is affecting it.

According to a fairly recent survey – 2012 – by The Atlantic,

Two-thirds of those surveyed said the country was headed in the wrong direction. Assuming that sentiment would be about the same today, how has Russia affected the impression of Americans that their own country is making misstep after miscalculation? Do you mean the electorate is upset that America did not go to war with Russia sooner? If so, please defend that view.

A substantial majority – 70% – responded that America’s values have been getting worse. Recent ‘advances’ in American tolerance have been a greater social acceptance of homosexuality, human cloning, pre-marital sex and having a child out of wedlock. Which of these has Russia undermined in America or put America in a bad light abroad? Some? All of them? How? America made a big noise about Russia being homophobic in the run-up to the Sochi Olympic Games, because it was hoping to get the games moved and give Russia a political black eye thereby. Since the games ended – successfully – Washington has not said a word about homophobia in Russia. Did it just go away? Or was it never there in the first place? Or did America stop caring about gay rights?

Nearly half – 46% – expected American values to become weaker over the next decade. That was before Russia dug its heels in and began seriously to oppose American objectives worldwide, but most especially in Ukraine, where the US State Department is on record as having sponsored a coup which ousted the democratically-elected leader in Ukraine, and hand-picked a government to succeed him. How has Russia contributed since to a weakening of American values? Is regime change an American value, or just a political tool?

Freedom of speech and freedom of religion were selected by Americans as the top examples of their values compared to other countries. How has Russia undermined American freedom of speech and/or freedom of religion around the world and at home? In fact, it is Washington that wants to intervene to control what Americans hear and understand, and anything which does not correspond to the approved narrative is branded ‘fake news’. Similarly, Washington wants to set up propaganda networks abroad to beam America’s values to areas which have heretofore not been particularly receptive to them. What kind of a thing is that to do, considering Americans themselves assess that the country’s values are going to hell in a handbasket, and expect the situation to worsen rather than improve? Or is The Atlantic one of Putin’s mouthpieces?

Two-thirds of Americans believe the American economy is headed in the wrong direction, and half thought it was unfair to middle-class and working-class people. I’m just going to step in here and say that that is entirely and completely up to the US government, and that Russia has no effect on it at all, while not downplaying it as a serious problem. Objections? I thought not. Similarly, 70% of Americans believed elected officials reflect the values of the wealthy, while upwards of 80% agreed money and lobbyists have too much influence in politics. That’s just two years after Citizens United resulted in corporations being awarded personhood for the purposes of making donations to political campaigns. At first blush, I would have to say that was unpopular. I really don’t see a handle there for you to grab, either, from the standpoint that Russia is eroding American values. Can corporations make unlimited donations to political campaigns in Russia? They surely can not.

Oh, hey; maybe this is your breakthrough – more than half of Americans did not expect their information to be private when using social media, and nearly the same percentage worried about government collecting information on their private lives! Oh, wait, though: they were worried about their own government snooping on them. Not Russia.

Finally, nearly 80% of Americans believed people were typically motivated by self-interest than by altruism. Those, Molly, are the values you want people to import from the United States, and implement in their own countries. Speaking strictly for myself; thanks, but no, thanks.

Look, we’re getting close to the end of this, and it’s time for plain speaking. Americans are confused and don’t know fact from fiction because their own government feeds them bullshit with a side of spin day in, day out, and you’re part of it. There was no Russian interference in the American elections, and you know it. Crimea fled into the arms of the Russian Federation because its citizens feared repression by the Ukrainian coup government; Crimea is overwhelmingly ethnic Russian and the coup government promptly rushed in a bill which downgraded the official status of the Russian language in Ukraine, even though the very great majority can and does speak it. The bill was never signed into law – its effect was so plainly and immediately negative that the kangaroo government dared not. But the damage was already done, and you know that, too. There has never been any evidence which tied the FSB to the Moscow apartment bombings, and the theory is popular in the west only because it suits the popular picture of Russia in the west. The sources often quoted which support it  – such as Novaya Gazeta and The New Times – are viewed in Russia much the same way an allegation that John F. Kennedy was assassinated by Bat Boy would be viewed in America if it were reported in The National Enquirer and the Weekly World News. You know that, too.

Finally, the notion that Russia has anything to teach the great hegemon, that has never since its birth known a decade without a war, anything about employment of mercenaries or covert warfare should be viewed as comical. Green men? America did its dirtiest fighting in Iraq – a war it lied the American people and the world into with wild tales of weapons of mass destruction – with contractors from Blackwater. In Syria, American Special Forces fought alongside Kurdish irregulars, wearing their insignia to disguise American active-duty participation. Incredibly, a Pentagon spokesman announced that this is common practice, apparently unaware that it is an example of an offense against the Laws of Armed Conflict referred to as Perfidy: to wit; the wearing of uniforms or the use of emblems of neutral States or other States not party to the conflict because uniforms or emblems of neutral States or of other States not party to the conflict may not be used.” The YPG is not a recognized state military force, and is recognized by US allies Saudi Arabia and Turkey as a terrorist organization.

What Washington demands of Russia is a lifetime of self-denial and subordination. It is not going to get it willingly. How Washington responds to this rejection of its terms will define the maintenance of an uneasy global peace… or regional, perhaps even global war.

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909 Responses to Get in There and Win One For Mom and Apple Pie: Non-Combatant Molly McKew Pounds the War Drum

  1. cartman says:

  2. kirill says:

    What’s this love affair between the CIA and Sunni Salafis? It does not make any sense.

    Here is this convert clown attacking Trump:

    I did not realize that Salafi Islam has taken over the US establishment 🙂

    • Pavlo Svolochenko says:

      Real.

      Fake, but director Brennan would approve.

    • marknesop says:

      The CIA has gone completely off the reservation, allegedly meeting with its Israeli counterparts and warning them not to share intelligence with the Trump administration, lest he immediately squeal it to his Russian friends. A breakdown of the intelligence-sharing link between Israel and Washington is just fine with me; but it seems the US intelligence services are going just a little bit far with believing their own chicanery, and in their pique they risk throwing out the baby with the bathwater.

      I need hardly point out that all this foolishness, if it results in the degradation of intelligence-sharing between the USA and its allies (why stop with Israel? Wouldn’t Putin be interested in knowing what the CIA is sharing with MI-6?) will have one immediate and significant beneficiary. Moscow. Under ‘self-fulfilling prophesy’, find “Post-Obama intelligence failure’.

      Mind you, Trump could also conclude that this behaviour constitutes treason – because it does – and do a housecleaning that wiped out the current upper echelon. A nice environment for promotion. Intelligence officials who are not completely drunk on the self-delusionary Jim Jones cocktails being served up these days would do well to remember the example of when Ronnie Reagan cleaned out the Air Traffic Controllers after they refused a direct order to stop their strike, back in 1981. People said it couldn’t be done, but it was done, and events rolled right over them with scarcely a bump.

      • yalensis says:

        Yeah, that’s a very good point. People become institutionalized, they get away with murder for years and start to think they are indispensable. “They can’t fire me, I’ve been here umpteen years and I’m indispensable, the place would fall apart without me, blah blah blah.”
        Then a new team comes in and wipes them all away, and the institution continues to funciton just fine, or better, without them.
        Trump could easily fire about 100 top-level management people in the CIA. Their juniors would move up, swear their allegiance to Trump, and the institution would continue without missing a beat. Nobody is indispensable.

      • et Al says:

        I’m thinking of writing a book about the CIA about its relationship with radical forms of Islam. Provisional title:

        Love Beneath the Burqua
        How the CIA Hook, Line & Sinkered

      • Cortes says:

        The new administration could win lots of friends by doing exactly that plus announcing presidential honours for Manning, Snowden, Kiriakou and others who blew the whistle on wrongdoing. Right minded people in the intelligence and military services would applaud and work more diligently in an environment of decency. Or maybe I m naive.

      • Northern Star says:

        “Mind you, Trump could also conclude that this*** behaviour constitutes treason*** – because it does – and do a housecleaning that wiped out the current upper echelon.”

        Exactly…I think I pointed out somewhat the same thing on this thread when I stated that Trump is after all the CIC……PERIOD.
        Within the boundaries set by the Constitution..and tenets of fundamental morality..Trump must be permitted to function as CIC….

        If push does comes to shove between the unbridled evil arrogance of some in the so called ‘intelligence community’ (read: brotherhood) and the Trump people..obviously a lot would depend on exactly who the military would throw its weight behind….

  3. Erika says:

    Must watch – Dmitry Peskov interview with NBC news.

    Dmitry Peskov is Vladimir Putin’s spokesperson.

    http://www.nbcnews.com/video/watch-full-interview-with-kremlin-spokesman-dmitry-peskov-853603395519

    • yalensis says:

      Peskov is also the husband of Tatiana Navka, as I pointed out in my ever-popular post about the Holocaust On Ice controversy.
      Sorry for self-plug!

    • Cortes says:

      Neely is so heavily embedded in the PTB that the tone of the interview is very important. Beneath a veneer of tough questions Peskov deals easily with the softball approach, though his sincerity ratings would be a fail for this stooge. Needs more time in the Lavrov Masterclass working on keeping a straight face.

      • et Al says:

        I had similar thoughts Cortes. On reflection, I have the feeling it was a more ‘for the record’ and a bit of going through the motions of a ‘hard’ interview so that they don’t have to come back to those crap questions so that maybe next time they could have a more substantive interview with Peskov.

        If NBC and other such organizations are even interested in journalism, then it is in their interests to be able to have the heavy hitters and others back on their screens rather than totally ignored. There’s no future in burning their bridges with Russian officials and I think they also sense that with Trump it may be an opportunity to row back – without ever admitting fault of course. The alternative is forever to be blasted by Zakharova via facebook… mmmmmm!

        • Cortes says:

          Agreed about “on the record “.

          First technical translation job I ever did involved constant resets to measuring equipment. A pain in the arse but absolutely necessary. The Neely/Peskov gig was just such an exercise.

  4. ucgsblog says:

    Rosie O’Donnell calls for martial law to prevent the Inauguration of Donald Trump

    “Comedian and former talk-show host Rosie O’Donnell has a new idea for preventing President-elect Donald Trump from taking office — martial law. Hollywood hand-wringing over Mr. Trump’s Election Day victory was taken to a new level Wednesday night when Ms. O’Donnell told over 900,000 followers that she “fully” supported the imposition of martial law prior to Jan. 20. “I fully support imposing martial law — delaying the inauguration — until Trump is ‘cleared’ of all charges,” Ms. O’Donnell, who formerly co-hosted “The View” with Barbara Walters, tweeted.
    The comedian, who failed to list any official charges that should prevent Mr. Trump from taking office, also linked to an image describing environments where military control of the civilian population “might be best.” Ms. O’Donnell, a regular critic of Mr. Trump, last made national headlines when she suggested that the billionaire’s 10-year-old son, Barron, may be autistic. Fierce backlash over the baseless allegations prompted her to apologize to the future first lady.”

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/jan/12/rosie-odonnell-calls-for-imposing-martial-law-to-s/

    Talk about taking the definition of being a sore loser to a new extreme. As for the rest of us, mere American folk, we’re ignoring the whole post-election drama. This is like a badly produced rerun of the election, and we just want to move on, with Trump as president, even those of us who didn’t vote for him, like yours truly.

    • marknesop says:

      I guess that puts paid to any suspicion that Hollywood folk got their glamorous jobs because they are just smarter than the rest of us. As it becomes clearer every day that nothing short of assassination is going to prevent Trump from assuming the presidency, it is remarkable therefore to see people still stepping forward to declare themselves as enemies of the state. It did not take anything more than pictures of a few liberal congressional members with crosshairs superimposed on their faces, and some whackjob shot Congresswoman Giffords in Arizona. All this desperate talk is very likely to bring the nuts out of the bushes, and it’s all just fantasy because the entire premise – that meddling by Moscow put Trump in the driver’s seat – is complete nonsense.

      Who does Ms. O’Donnell imagine will impose martial law? Has she done any reading on the subject at all? Martial law on the national level may only be imposed by Congress or…the President. The President has done it only once, and this one is unlikely to impose it now to prevent his own inauguration, and Congress has never done it. Unsurprising, since Congress may only declare it to suppress insurrections and repel invasions. The only insurrection, to prevent the duly-elected president from assuming the office he legally won, is on the part of the liberals, so they are apparently calling for martial law to be imposed against themselves.

      • yalensis says:

        I think what Rosie wants is for Obama to impose martial law. Bammy is still Prez for 4 days, so he would have to hurry up and do it.

        Personally, I don’t think Bammy has the guts to do it. (Nor the support within the military that it would take to pull this off!)

  5. Warren says:

    Published on 12 Jan 2017
    Glenn Greenwald is scathing about the CIA as he speaks to Emily Maitlis about the publication of memos which claim that Russia has compromising material on Donald Trump.

    Newsnight is the BBC’s flagship news and current affairs TV programme – with analysis, debate, exclusives, and robust interviews.

  6. Pavlo Svolochenko says:

  7. marknesop says:

    Ukraine takes bold steps to replace its thousands of Kalashnikov assault rifles with a Ukrainian-made M-16, in partnership with its good friends, the Americans. Unfortunately, they made it chambered for the Soviet 5.45 x 39 round. So when Ukrainian soldiers went on one of their friendly NATO military exercises recently to highlight how much better NATO could be with Ukrainian reinforcement, they had to borrow German assault rifles from the Lithuanians, because of ammunition issues. NATO uses 5.56 ammo.

    Not to worry, though – it’s dead easy to convert their new national weapon, the WAC47, to NATO ammunition. You just have to replace the bolt and the barrel. Although when you think about it, there’s not that much to an assault rifle outside the bolt and barrel.

    You can’t make this stuff up.

    • Moscow Exile says:

      From the above linked article:

      The Ukrainian military is embroiled in a nearly three-year-old proxy war against pro-Russian separatists and Russian regulars in the Donbas, Ukraine’s embattled southeastern territory on the border with Russia.

      A “proxy war”?

      Proxy to which external manipulators?

      Oh right — the Empire of Evil is one of them. Any other interested parties?

      What does “pro-Russian” separatists mean? Are they fighting for separation from the Ukraine and joining Russia or they fighting against the armed forces unleashed against them by the “government” in Kiev, which forces attacked citizens of the Ukrainian Donetsk and Lugansk provinces when they tried to hold a referendum against rule from Kiev?

      See: Ukraine rebels hold referendums in Donetsk and Luhansk

      “Self-rule” referendums have been held in Ukraine’s easternmost areas, with pro-Russian separatists claiming nearly 90% voted in favour in Donetsk region.
      BBC reporters at polling stations in Donetsk and Luhansk regions spoke of chaotic scenes, no voting booths in places and no electoral register.

      At least one person is reported to have been killed by armed men loyal to Ukraine’s government.

      Ukraine called the vote a “criminal farce” organised by Russia.

      Western countries have also condemned the vote. Separatist leaders ignored a call by the Russian president to delay it.

      There’s Auntie BBC being impartial again!

      Why “self rule” in inverted commas?

      Why “pro-Russian”?

      Why not “self-determination”?

      The BBC does concede, however, that at least one Ukrainian citizen had been killed by “armed men loyal to Ukraine’s government”.

      Why are these “armed men loyal to Ukraine’s government” not described as terrorists?

      As regards Russian regulars fighting against Kiev armed forces:

      Where are these “Russian regulars”?

      Any prisoners?

      Any bodies?

      Oh right!

      Here’s the evidence:

      Russian regulars lost their passports whist fleeing from “anti-terrorist” Yukie forces.

      To date, we have only the facts of participation of individual members of the Armed forces of the Russian Federation, Russian citizens in the illegal armed formations in combat. Fighting with the regular units of the Russian army today, we also do not conduct. We have enough forces and means in order to inflict a final defeat even illegal armed formations” — Ukraine Armed forces Chief of Staff Colonel-General Viktor Muzhenko, January 2015.

      See:
      НОВИНИ
      МУЖЕНКО: Є ФАКТИ УЧАСТІ ГРОМАДЯН РФ ТА РОСІЙСЬКИХ АРМІЙЦІВ У НЕЗАКОННИХ ЗБРОЙНИХ ФОРМУВАННЯХ НА ДОНБАСІ

      • Moscow Exile says:

        To make it clear, what Colonel-General Viktor Muzhenko said in Ukrainian is that although there are individuals who are serving in the Russia armed forces that are participating with the separatists, there are no units of the Russian army operating in the contested areas — or at the very least, no Ukrainian armed forces have come in contact with any such Russian military units.

        Notwithstanding what the Ukrainian general said 2 years, however, Poroshenko has announced on numerous occasions that the Russians have indeed invaded Eastern Ukraine and have established military units there. This is repeated by Canadian Bandera-shites ad nauseam, as well as by EU politicians.

        • marknesop says:

          In fact, Porky has claimed on several occasions that the Ukie Army has fought the Russian Army to a standstill, and that it is the only force which prevents that Russian Army from rampaging across Europe. While Porky’s forces have the entire Russian Army at bay, a small detachment of the Russian Air Force turned the tide of battle in Syria in less than a month although the ‘rebel’ forces enjoyed the enthusiastic support of Brussels and Washington. Ukraine must be an amazingly tough nut to crack; hard to believe, given its army’s shambolic performance at Ilovaisk and Debaltseve.

          • Jen says:

            Their skulls must be extremely thick as a result of hundreds of thousands of years of natural selection for mammoth fighting and digging up the Black Sea, that’s why Ukrainians are such tough nuts to crack. Pity that all that calcium overload didn’t leave much in the way of cranium space.

      • Moscow Exile says:

        And just look what follows Biden’s visit to Kiev!

        From Porky’s website:

        President instructed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to file a lawsuit against Russia to the UN International Court of Justice in The Hague: The aggressor must pay its price.

        President Petro Poroshenko has instructed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to submit a claim to the UN International Court of Justice in The Hague regarding Russia’s violation of the UN Convention on the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination.

        “The Russian Federation has been brutally violating international law for three years. For three years Russia has been undertaking the illegal annexation of the Crimea, the illegal occupation of the east of our country in the territory of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions and implementing a policy of elimination and discrimination in the Crimea”, the President said at a meeting with the Commissioner of the President of the Ukraine for the Affairs of Crimean Tatars, Mustafa Dzhemilev, the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Olena Zerkal, and the Deputy Heads of the Presidential Administration, Kostiantyn Yelisieiev and Oleksiy Filatov.

        He emphasized that over the past three years Russian militants had committed numerous terrorist attacks affecting hundreds of thousands of innocent people who have been forced to leave their homes.

        The President reminded that about 1.7 million Ukrainians were IDPs [Internally Displaced Persons — ME]. “Those who have remained in the Crimea and the Donbas suffer torture and persecution. The Mejlis of Crimean Tatars has been banned. Other crimes that must not go unpunished are being committed”, Petro Poroshenko said. At the same time, the President recalled numerous crimes committed by terrorists against civilians in Mariupol, Volnovakha and Kramatorsk, as well as the MH-17 tragedy.

        The Head of State expressed confidence that the Ukraine had been acting exclusively in the framework of international law since the beginning of the Russian aggression. He noted that the given work had been carried out pursuant to his instruction and today the process of long pre-trial work had been completed. The lawsuit to the ICJ is ready.

        This lawsuit is taking place within the Convention on the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism. “This has been long and meticulous work. Many sessions have been held and a great number of notes have been submitted”, the President said. In the framework of this lawsuit 5 sessions have been held and 45 notes have been submitted.

        The second position in our lawsuit is related to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. Three sessions have been held and over 20 notes have been submitted regarding this issue.

        “Today, the entire complex of preparations in the pre-trial process has been completed. The Ukraine is fully ready to submit the necessary documents to the ICJ in order to bring the Russian Federation to justice under these two Conventions”, the President noted and emphasized that the preparation made by the Ukrainian party had been rigorous.

        The Head of State noted that he had taken personal control over previous lawsuits against Russia in the framework of lawsuits regarding its violation of international maritime law, that the Ukraine has raised the question of making Russia answerable for its illegal confiscation of Ukrainian property, Ukrainian natural resource deposits, the seizure of Ukrainian platforms, the obstruction of fishing rights and the causing of environmental damage and other harmful processes to the Ukraine in the annexed Crimea and occupied Donbas.

        The President also informed about his instruction to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Justice regarding the maintenance of lawsuits in the framework of bilateral documents on the protection of investments that will ensure the protection of Ukrainian state-owned enterprises. “Russia must pay the price for its aggression”, Petro Poroshenko said and instructed Ukrainian diplomats to submit a claim to the UN International Court of Justice in The Hague today.

        (I have had the temerity to proofread and edit the Ukrainian English on Porky the Pig’s above-linked site into real English like what I was brung up to speak, namely I have corrected errors in lexis, punctuation, article usage and tense usage, especially with regards to tense usage in reported speech — ME 🙂 )

        • marknesop says:

          Can’t hurt to try, I suppose, and it make Ukrainians think the president is doing something to earn his daily crust. But it has little chance of getting any attention in the Hague. Not that they wouldn’t love to bring in a guilty verdict; they would, but Porky can’t offer anything but rhetoric to substantiate his claims.

    • et Al says:

      Maybe Ukraine can buy NATO compatible AK-101/102 Kalashnikovs from Russia?

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AK-100_(Rifle_family)

      • marknesop says:

        But, you see, that would defeat the purpose of eschewing everything Russian – Ukraine is Europe, after all. That’s why they want to use the M-16. Oh, wait – that’s American. All right, then; Ukraine is America!

        In their introduction to actual battle with forces of the Russian Federation, the Georgian Army reportedly threw away its new American assault rifles and reverted to the AK-47 it knew best.

        • et Al says:

          Yes indeed, but the regime in Kiev are compulsive hypocrites. They always declare some such change or separation but often little is done. Maybe they could license build them in Ukraine (‘Made in Ukraine’ TM) in return for bigger Antonov licenses or something. On the q/t of course. The Ukrainian media would be ordered not to report it..

  8. Moscow Exile says:

    Death toll in cargo plane crash in Kyrgyzstan grows to 37

    The aeroplane, a US built Boeing 747 operated by a Turkish air freight company, crashed onto a dacha territory.

    The aircraft model has been involved in several crashes over the past decade, including a pair of accidents in 2010 and 2011 attributed to on board fires involving the shipment of lithium ion batteries. Shifting cargo aboard a National Airlines 747 was blamed for a crash in 2012 when the jumbo airliner was taking off from Kabul, Afghanistan, killing all seven aboard — see: Kyrgyzstan plane crash: Dozens killed when 747 hits village.

    • marknesop says:

      Flying coffins, those – why are people still trusting their lives to such a creaky and unreliable airframe?

      To be fair, many of the 747’s crashes have occurred in the services of its foreign customers, where Boeing cannot ensure adherence to maintenance schedules and use of only Boeing parts. The same is true of Tupolev aircraft crashes, although any crash that occurs in the service of former Soviet client states is assumed to be a Russian air crash.

  9. Pavlo Svolochenko says:

    • Moscow Exile says:

      The German government elite have become unnerved by Trump’s statement that NATO is obsolete.

      To say “unnerved” is, I think, an understatement: they are acting as though Trump has given a green light to the Empire of Evil to invade Germany and Western Europe.

      Why the Russians should wish to do this, I simply don’t know: Russia is the biggest country in the world with ample natural resources. Perhaps their invasion plans are just part of an inherited urge to conquer the world. After all, Russians are Tatars, really, aren’t they?And world conquest was Chingis Khan’s objective yada yada yada …

      See: Alliance under threat?Germany hits out at Donald Trump for causing ‘anxiety’ after he labels Nato ‘obsolete’

      His remarks have been “received with concern” and caused anxiety “not only in Brussels” Mr Steinmeier said, after meeting with Jen Stoltenberg, the Nato secretary-general, on Monday morning.

      A reader’s comment to the above linked Telegraph article:

      It’s about time Germany starts paying for its own defence. Especially if it wants to pick up [sic} a fight with Russia, again.

      I think the commenter may not be a native English speaker — dare I say a “putinbot”?

      🙂

      The expression should surely be “to pick a fight with someone”.

      Then again, if Germany wants to pick a fight with Russia, then it should be willing to pick up the tab for doing so!

    • marknesop says:

      Says someone born well after the defeat of Nazi Germany and who has no experience of it other than what he has read from western accounts. Otherwise he might recall that was the death of Nazi Germany.

      • Pavlo Svolochenko says:

        ‘The war against Russia is an important chapter in the struggle for existence of the German nation. It is the old battle of Germanic against Slav peoples, of the defence of European culture against Muscovite-Asiatic inundation, and the repulse of Jewish-Bolshevism. The objective of this battle must be the destruction of present-day Russia and it must therefore be conducted with unprecedented severity. Every military action must be guided in planning and execution by an iron will to exterminate the enemy mercilessly and totally. In particular, no adherents of the present Russian-Bolshevik system are to be spared.[1]’

        – General Erich Hoepner, May 1941

        Tempted to change a few of the particulars, post it on OccupyDemocrats or 20Committee and see how many approving responses it gets.

        • kirill says:

          The precious west, so afraid of ideas that it is willing to stage genocide to fight them. Then it calls itself the center of global civilization. Retarded chimps.

        • marknesop says:

          I expect it would get quite a few admiring salutes. It would certainly be a grand jape to expose those who did as Nazi fans once removed.

      • Pavlo Svolochenko says:

        ‘The war against Russia is an important chapter in the struggle for existence of the free world. It is the old battle of democracy against tyranny, of the defence of Europe against Russian inundation, and the repulse of Eurasianism. The objective of this battle must be the destruction of present-day Russia and it must therefore be conducted with unprecedented severity. Every military action must be guided in planning and execution by a determination to exterminate the enemy mercilessly and totally. In particular, no adherents of the present Eurasianist-gangster system are to be spared.’

        – Eric Hopper, national security blogger, January 2017.

        That’s a neocon-friendly alteration. But I think it’s funnier to see self-proclaimed ‘progressives’ frothing like Goebbels at the sportpalast, so here’s a left-wing version:

        ‘The war against Russia is an important chapter in the struggle for existence of the progressive future. It is the old battle of tolerance against bigotry, of the defence of progressive values against white supremacist inundation, and the repulse of Neo-Russian Neo-Fascism. The objective of this battle must be the destruction of present-day Russia and it must therefore be conducted with unprecedented severity. Every military action must be guided in planning and execution by a determination to exterminate the enemy mercilessly and totally. In particular, no adherents of the present Russian fascist system are to be spared.’

        – Eric Hopper, gay activist, January 2017.

  10. et Al says:

    Euractive: Lithuania to build Kaliningrad border fence with EU money
    http://www.euractiv.com/section/global-europe/news/lithuania-to-build-kaliningrad-border-fence-with-eu-money/

    Lithuania said today (16 January) it plans to use EU funds to build a fence on the border with Russia’s highly militarised Kaliningrad exclave to boost security and prevent smuggling.

    …Construction of the 130-kilometre fence will start this spring and will be finished by the end of the year, Interior Minister Eimutis Misiunas told AFP.

    “The reasons are both economic to prevent smuggling and geopolitical to strengthen the EU’s external border,” he said.

    The two-metre (six-foot) high fence will cost around €30 million and will be mostly funded by the European Union.

    In the context of the refugee crisis, the Commission has repeatedly said that EU money couldn’t be used to erect border wall and fences.

    “It would not stop tanks but it will be difficult to climb over,” Misiunas said…
    ####

    What was it Groucho Marx said about clubs? “Please accept my resignation. I don’t care to belong to any club that will have me as a member.”

    • Cortes says:

      Yep, I’m sure arthritic octogenarian frontline troops and smugglers will toil at climbing a fence that big. What about the septuagenarian cadets, though? Don’t they have ladders, wire cutters and other bits of kit?

      • Jen says:

        You forget, Lithuania is frightened of little green men.

        • Cortes says:

          Let’s get this sorted.

          The “western ” MSM media version is “little green men” which smacks of aliens while RT etc refer to “polite green men ”

          What’s the consensus among stooges?

          • marknesop says:

            I don’t think there was ever any consensus that they were indisputably Russians. I maintain it is possible some were Crimean defense forces; the autonomous Republic maintained its own military forces, which were never accounted for and who were strangely invisible throughout the conflict leading up to Crimea’s repatriation. It stands to reason most of them would be ethnic Russians, since the majority of the population is. Featureless uniforms and balaclavas have not been used by the Russian regular forces before to my knowledge, and those responding to Georgia’s foolish provocation wore their regular units’ badges and insignia.

          • Moscow Exile says:

            Neither term is factually correct!

            The military who wore unmarked green camoflauge uniform in the Crimea were originally refered to by Russians as вежливые люди — “polite people” — following what Defence Minister Shoigu had said about them:

            See: Шойгу о “зеленых человечках” на Украине: глупо искать черную вежливую кошку в темной комнате

            Shoigu on “polite people” in the Ukraine: searching for a black, polite cat in a dark room is stupid.

            “Трудно искать черную кошку в темной комнате, особенно если ее там нет, – сказал министр (цитата по “Интерфакс”). – Это тем более глупо, если эта кошка умная, смелая и вежливая”.

            “It is difficult to search for a black cat in in a dark room, especially if it is not there”, the Minister said (“interfax”). “It is especially foollish to do this if the cat is clever, brave and polite.”

            Yukie shitwits and the Western media were responsible for the “little green men” tag after that oafish USAF General (retd.) Breedlove had described them as “green men”.

            I think Breedlove may have had these people in mind when referring to “green men”:

    • marknesop says:

      Our building site had to have the six-foot fences upgraded to eight feet to keep out the crackheads at night. Difficult to imagine them as stronger and more resourceful than the Russian army. It’s no wonder Lithuania and Ukraine are so sympatico – they are similarly dysfunctional.

    • Moscow Exile says:

      The Kaliningrad governor has responded by offering to provide materials for the building of a wall alomg the border: there is a large, modern brickworks situated in the oblast’ close to the frontier. He said that if such a secure frontier would help stop smuggling, then he was all for it.

      See: Kaliningrad eager to supply bricks to Lithuania for wall building on Russia’s border

      And don’t forget folks — Russians are humourless, dour, surly sub-humans.

  11. Moscow Exile says:

    Russian artist who nailed his scrotum to Moscow’s Red Square seeks asylum in France after rape claims

    He claims it’s a load of bollocks what they’ve accused him of.

    HoweverNovaya Gazeta reports that the producer of Teatr.doc, Vsevolod Lisowski, has said that Pavlensky attacked one of the theatre actors.

    “One of our actors was beaten up by Pyotr Pavlensky together with his wife and a group of associates … we have a recording of CCTV cameras The video shows him being knocked to the ground and then they put the boot in him”, said the theatre director.

    See: Man who nailed his testicles to Moscow’s Red Square seeks asylum in France

    (He nailed his ball bag, as a matter of fact, not his balls!)

    The artist and his partner, Oksana Shalygina, claim they were cross-examined for nine hours over allegations that they had committed a sex crime with an actress whom they had both slept with.

    See also Yukie report: Художник Павленский покинул Россию: его обвинили в изнасиловании

    Artist Pavlensky quits Russia after having been accused of rape


    I never done nothing! Those feds can’t pin that lousy rap on me!

    • Lyttenburgh says:

      I inovke spirits of Baba Vanga and Nostradamus and predict… the Frenchies WILL grant him political asylum! This is just a thing that monsier Hollande would gladly do to “avenge” Aleppo.

      As for Pavlensky’s case – its twofold. He and his “friends” are accused of beating up a (male) actor of this Teatr.doc and he and his… doxy are accused of going overboard in kinky stuff while doing to a (female) actress of the same theatre. He and his Oksana had their short version of “5-stages” starting with denial, then with claiming that there was a consent and ending with accusing their victim of being a chekist stooge who dared to write a report to the accursed Regime.

      I’m quite surprised he didn’t ran off to the Ukraine, though…

    • Moscow Exile says:

      BBC:

      Russian artist Pavlensky ‘to seek French asylum’ amid sex claim

      Putin must be scared shitless of him!

      He insisted that the charge of sexual assault was also politically motivated.

      “Of course they want to get rid of what gets in their way”, he said. “We think they were showing us that we had two options. Either we would be liquidated from the political context, in a regime prison. Or we could leave the country”, the artist said.

      He and his common-law wife would be “liquidated from the political context” because they are so dangerous to the state!

      A “regime” prison no less!!!

      However, the BBC reports that :

      Staff at drama company Teatr.doc – known for its liberal, opposition agenda – have defended the actress involved, dismissing any suggestion that she’s some kind of agent for Russia’s intelligence services.

      As regards his seeking political asylum in la belle France, the brave “artist” has stated to the BBC:

      “I have no desire to return like a lamb to the slaughter. Especially a slaughter that is desired, by the state”.

      And you know what? — nobody but nobody (well, hardly anybody) in Russia gives a monkey’s about him, apart from the IC because serious accusations of sexual assault have been made against him by an actress at Theatre.doc.

      Then again, in the eyes of many in the West, anyone accused of anything in Russia is by definition innocent of all charges because Putin makes the charges and tells the judges and juries what verdicit shall be given.

      Be that as it may, this “artist” is yet another victim of the authoritarian Mafia State that is “Putin’s Russia”.

      Talking about which, Her Britannic Majesty’s Royal Navy is getting its knickers in a twist again pending the oncoming return passage of the Straits of Dover by a task force from “Vladimir Putin’s fleet”.

      Adml Sir Philip Jones said the Navy was dealing with the highest level of activity from Vladimir Putin’s fleet since the end of the Cold War.

      Silly me! And there was I thinking that the fleet flying the St.Andrew flag was the Russian fleet!

      See:

      Navy facing heaviest Russian activity since Cold War says First Sea Lord

      • Drutten says:

        Obviously the Kremlin hacked his brain. QED.

      • kirill says:

        Let France take this shitball. He can rape and murder and they can look the other way like they are doing with the Salafi rabble they imported over the last couple of years. Center of civilization and all that jazz.

      • marknesop says:

        Well, they had better get Theresa May’s fleet out there to intercept them on their way back. I realize when Theresa May’s fleet sets out somewhere, it never comes back, but other navies do not work that way and where a transit from home waters to somewhere in the world occurs it is eventually succeeded by a transit home again. It’s only because the Royal Navy does things differently from everyone else that they see something alarming in this activity.

        As far as Pavlensky goes, he seems a little bit crazy. But he is surely not so crazy that he doesn’t know he and his activities outside criminal behaviour constitute no interest to the state whatsoever. He is simply trying to grease his path to political asylum by pretending to be some bone in Putin’s throat, knowing the bigger irritant to the state he makes himself appear, the more likely is his acceptance. Liberals all know this.

        • Jen says:

          Only problem is that once Pavlensky is out of Russia, any future actions he undertakes won’t attract very much attention unless they’re something really extreme and outrageous – like including this chair as part of a sit-down strike.

          • marknesop says:

            Yes, but that’s a problem for Pavlensky, and his future problems probably do not concern the Russian state any more than his present ones. Not to mention the future problems posed for western journalists trying to whip up artistic outrage in the west and sympathy for poor persecuted Pavlensky when he’s not ‘persecuted’ any more but is still an unstable crackpot.

      • Moscow Exile says:

        Backpack sponsored by Pavlensky:

        Gross!

    • kirill says:

      Fucking criminal with the face to confirm it.

  12. et Al says:

    Antiwar.com: Dozens Killed as ISIS Advances in Syria’s Deir Ezzor
    http://news.antiwar.com/2017/01/15/dozens-killed-as-isis-advances-in-syrias-deir-ezzor/

    Syrian Forces in Retreat in East After Massive Attacks

    …A flurry of suicide attacks and rocket fire on Saturday ushered in a weekend of heavy fighting, with dozens reported slain across the area, including civilians and combatants, though as is often the case both sides contested how many losses they each suffered…

    …The military airport there has long been the last major such site for the Syrian military to launch airstrikes in the eastern half of the country, and its loss would be a devastating setback for them, as well as a major boost for ISIS. This fact has meant, despite a desperate attempt to defend the site, ISIS continues to try to make inroads in the vicinity with hopes of eventually forcing their way in…

  13. et Al says:

    The Atlantic via Defense One via Antiwar.com: Why Is Obama Expanding Surveillance Powers Right Before He Leaves Office?
    http://www.defenseone.com/politics/2017/01/why-obama-expanding-surveillance-powers-right-he-leaves-office/134584/?oref=d-river

    It could be to prevent Trump from extending them even more.

    …But while the changes may subject more Americans to warrantless surveillance, the last-minute timing of the announcement actually might have been designed to cut future privacy losses. Susan Hennessey, a Brookings fellow and the managing editor of Lawfare, says firming up the changes before Trump takes office makes it harder for the incoming president to encroach even further on civil liberties…

    ####

    OH, F/K OFF! You can hardly get more dishonest than this piece of full security state fluff piece bs. George Orwell turns in his grave. Again. O-bomber had 8 years to push these changes through, but he didn’t.

    Who needs the media when it prints butt kissing s/t like this.

  14. et Al says:

    Interfax via Neuters via Antiwar.com: Russia to upgrade its naval, air bases in Syria: Interfax
    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-syria-russia-base-idUSKBN14Z0FQ

    …The source told Interfax that Russia will start repairing a second runway at Hmeimin air base near Latakia, while the Tartus naval base will be upgraded in order to handle bigger ships such as cruisers…

    …The source also told Interfax that Russia will still deploy S-300 surface-to-air defense systems and Bastion coastal missile launchers in Tartus.

  15. et Al says:

    Oilprice.com via Antiwar.com: Ukraine Pays 20% More For EU Gas Than It Would Have Paid To Russia
    http://oilprice.com/Latest-Energy-News/World-News/Ukraine-Pays-20-More-For-EU-Gas-Than-It-Would-Have-Paid-To-Russia.html

    France’s energy group Engie started direct gas deliveries to Ukraine at the beginning of January, and Kiev is paying 20 percent more for the EU gas than it would have paid to Gazprom if it had agreed to Russian deliveries before the cold winter temperatures settled in….

    …According to Russian media, the price of gas from EU countries was $230 per 1,000 cubic meters, which is 20 percent more than what Russian gas would have cost Ukraine, if it had agreed to imports: $186 per 1,000 cubic meters….

    …After the meeting at the EC, Aliona Osmolovska, a spokeswoman for Naftogaz, told Bloomberg that Ukraine can’t buy gas from Russia without a supplementary agreement on payment terms, and that Russia won’t sign the supplementary accord…

    • kirill says:

      I don’t buy this 20% number. The other day one of Ukraine’s main oligarchs stated that it was 40%. That sounds more legitimate. The 20% is an attempt to soften up the number.

    • marknesop says:

      Well, but you can’t put a price on independence, can you? Especially when the E-Yoodles are paying for your gas. That makes Ukrainians feel just as independent as hell.

  16. Cortes says:

    The following is an odd article about developments in South Asia. I’m struggling to see the elephant in the room: Afghanistan:

    http://russia-insider.com/en/politics/russia-seeks-strategic-partnership-pakistan/ri18546

  17. Warren says:

    The dark side of Britain’s gold rush: how corruption crept into our suburbs

    The super rich flooded into London after 2008. Illicit wealth has followed

    Stand outside a north London private school when the bell rings at the end of the day and it soon becomes apparent how much some parts of the capital have changed in only a few decades.

    Scything through the chill of a January afternoon comes the chatter of excited children. But these children are not speaking English or French or German. They talk in languages that come from far further afield.

    “Thirty years ago, your average private school was solidly middle class,” said Robert Barrington, executive director of the UK chapter of Transparency International, an anti-corruption organisation. “Now a high percentage, 50% or more, will be children from overseas, countries like China and Nigeria.”

    A similar picture emerges a few miles south of the leafy streets of Hampstead and Highgate down in Harley Street. The waiting rooms of the UK’s leading fertility clinics, orthodontists and cosmetic enhancement consultancies play host to wealthy families from the Middle East and the former Soviet bloc. From private schools to private healthcare, from Mercedes dealerships to Michelin-starred restaurants, the capital has benefited from a massive influx of foreign money.

    A Deutsche Bank analysis in 2015 of the UK’s balance of payments data suggested that since the mid-1970s much of this money has come from one country in particular. The bank’s report noted: “There is strong evidence that a good chunk of the UK’s £133bn of hidden capital inflows is related to Russia.”

    It appears more than a coincidence that much of the money has washed up following a concerted effort aimed at enticing the super wealthy to live in the UK. Eight years ago, in return for investing £2m, foreign investors were offered a “golden visa” allowing them to live in the UK. After five years they qualified for permanent residency.

    Analysis by Transparency International shows that, out of the 3,048 visas granted since the scheme began in 2008, 60% were awarded to Chinese and Russian nationals.

    https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2017/jan/14/corrupt-money-crept-britain-property-kleptocrats?CMP=share_btn_tw

  18. Warren says:

    David Cameron should not lead Nato, says senior Tory

    David Cameron should not become leader of Nato as his “talents do not include wisely-judging strategic issues”, a senior Conservative MP has warned.

    Julian Lewis, chairman of the Defence Select Committee, said the former prime minister had “charm and ability”.

    But he had “dangerously” delayed renewing Trident, Mr Lewis said, also questioning Mr Cameron’s roles in Libya, Brexit and armed forces cuts.

    The ex-PM was mooted as Nato secretary-general over the Christmas period.

    The incumbent, former Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, is due to stand down within the next couple of years.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-38642170

  19. Moscow Exile says:

    Kerry Slams Trump Over Attempts to ‘Step Into’ Policies of Other Countries

    O wad some Power the giftie gie us
    To see oursels as ithers see us!

    Robert Burns from, appropriately, “To a Louse”.

    • yalensis says:

      Burns wrote a poem about a Louse.
      He wrote a poem about a Mouse.
      Now, if they built themselves a House,
      The Louse would be the Mouse’s Spouse!

      • marknesop says:

        There was an old man from Cape Bass
        whose buttocks were made out of brass;
        When he clanked them together
        they played “Stormy Weather”,
        and lightning shot out of his ass.

  20. Warren says:

    Lithuania plans fence on Russian Kaliningrad border


    Nato has sent extra forces to train with Lithuania’s small army

    Lithuania has announced plans to build a fence to boost security on its border with Russia’s Kaliningrad enclave.

    The move comes amid heightened tensions in the Baltic region, where Nato is deploying extra troops and Russia has installed nuclear-capable missiles.

    The fence will cover about 135km (84 miles) of border, from Vistytis to the Neman River, which runs to the Baltic Sea. No barrier exists there currently.

    Lithuania says it aims to prevent any Russian “provocations” and smuggling.

    Lithuanian Interior Minister Eimutis Misiunas said one such provocation was the incident on Estonia’s border in 2014, when an Estonian security official was detained by Russia. In August 2015 Russia jailed Eston Kohver on spying charges. But he was freed the following month in a “spy swap” with Russia.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-38635737

  21. Warren says:

    • Moscow Exile says:

      He was trying hard to be polite: I’d call Sweeny a f*cking c*nt — to his face.

      He can fly over and I’ll do it, if he wants.

      • Warren says:

        Sweeney doesn’t like it when someone challenges him to his face.

      • Warren says:

        Sweeney is such an attention seeking twat.

        Published on 1 Sep 2014
        BBC observer John Sweeney tried to approach Vladimir Putin to ask several questions on Ukraine. President promised to answer later, however, the journalist insisted on receiving the answers immediately.

        • Moscow Exile says:

          Loaded question: “Do you regret the killings in the Ukraine?”

          Surely if one regrets an action, then one is is sorry that one did or did not do said action.

          Asking Putin if he regretted “the killings in the Ukraine” (the deaths that occured as a result of the downing of flight MH-17) immediately implies that Putin was in some way responsible for them.

          I suppose Sweeney thought he was being smart in posing such a loaded question.

    • Fern says:

      I’d say Dugin is being accurate “Their professional level is zero. Pure soviet-style propagandists” is an on-the-money description of most journalists working for the BBC. Sweeney was also the leading light on a similar Panorama hatchet job on Sochi – highlighting alleged corruption without doing the most basic checks on the costs of similar types of massive infrastructure projects in the holy and corruption-free West.

      • yalensis says:

        My only quibble is to defend “Soviet propagandists” from being compared with this cretinous crop. Soviet propaganda generally wasn’t about lying. They would say, for example, bad things about America, that were completely true.
        The only problem with Soviet propaganda was its limitations — there were certain topics they were simply not allowed to discuss.
        The things they did discuss were generally not lies. It might be slanted, but I don’t think they told real porkies. Not on the scale by today’s standards.

    • Pavlo Svolochenko says:

      Have Dugin and Putin ever even been in the same room?

  22. Warren says:

  23. Warren says:

    Why was the Zimmerman Telegram so important?

    Tuesday marks the 100th anniversary of a remarkable success for British intelligence: but one that involved spying on the United States and then conspiring with its senior officials to manipulate public opinion in America.

    On the morning of 17 January 1917, Nigel de Grey walked into his boss’s office in Room 40 of the Admiralty, home of British code-breakers.

    It was obvious to Reginald “Blinker” Hall that his subordinate was excited.
    “Do you want to bring America into the war?” De Grey asked.

    The answer was obvious. Everyone knew that America entering World War One to fight the Germans would help break the stalemate.

    “Yes, my boy. Why?” Hall answered.

    “I’ve got something here which – well, it’s a rather astonishing message which might do the trick if we could use it,” De Grey said.

    The previous day, the German foreign minister, Arthur Zimmerman, had sent a message to the German ambassador to Washington.

    The message used a code that had been largely cracked by British code-breakers, the forerunners of those who would later work at Bletchley Park.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-38581861

    Published on 31 Oct 2013
    Former SPY historian Thomas Boghardt returns to talk about his remarkable new account of the Zimmerman Telegram. He has tapped fresh sources to provide the definitive account of the origins and impact of this German scheme. Boghardt also corrects longstanding misunderstandings about how the telegram was sent and enciphered and provides a new account of how British intelligence was able to decipher it.

  24. Warren says:

    Published on 9 Nov 2016
    Support CaspianReport through Patreon:
    https://www.patreon.com/CaspianReport

    Channel of Patrice:
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCO-N

    BAKU – The Arctic covers roughly 14 million square kilometers of water and solid ice. It’s almost the size of Antarctica. For most of its part, the region is inhospitable. In the summer, the weather can rise above the melting point, yet, in the winter, it can plunge down to minus 45 degrees Celsius.

    This situation, however, is not to last. In the coming decades, climate change will make the Arctic passages and resources become more accessible. Given the abundance of resources and critical trade routes, it should come as no surprise that the Arctic will turn into a new geopolitical flashpoint.

    Published on 23 Nov 2016
    Support CaspianReport through Patreon:
    https://www.patreon.com/CaspianReport

    BAKU – The Arctic is rich in hydrocarbon and mineral resources. The region also holds two essential trade passages that connect East Asia, North America, and Europe. In other words, there’s tremendous potential in the Arctic and climate change is forcing nations to reevaluate their national interests.

    In a previous report, we went over the region’s territorial claims, legal proceedings, and the fact that every Arctic nation has made claims in the Northern Hemisphere. The ongoing disputes are legally complicated, but no other country is as well prepared to dominate the Arctic as Russia.

    • kirill says:

      Russia defending its territory and EEZ in the Arctic is “ambition” but NATzO deployment of troops along Russia’s borders is defense. Welcome to NATzO Newspeak that would make Orwell cringe.

      • Warren says:

        Russia is in the best position to take advantage of the warming of the Arctic, with the concomitant increase in commercial shipping and exploitation of hydrocarbons.

        The US for all its self-serving, self-righteous and hypocritical rhetoric regarding international law. Refuses to ratify the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

        With regards Canada, the warming of the Arctic will mean the northwest passage will become a viable route for commercial shipping. No one recognise or respects Canada’s bizarre claim that the waters in the northwest passage are Canadian “internal waters”. Foreign ships have as much right to traverse the northwest passage as they do through the Indonesian archipelago.

        An Obama-Trudeau Agreement Conceding Canada’s Claim to the Waters of the Northwest Passage?

        http://opiniojuris.org/2016/03/16/an-obama-trudeau-agreement-conceding-canadas-claim-to-the-waters-of-the-northwest-passage/

        • marknesop says:

          What horseshit. The entirety of the Northwest Passage is in a Canadian archipelago which is indisputably Canadian. To suggest that ‘nobody’ recognizes ‘Canada’s bizarre claim’ is like suggesting the Bosporus is not Turkish and the Turks’ claim to it is ‘bizarre’. If people keep up this fuckery, Canada will take the dispute to court and win, and it will be laid down in legalese. Other countries which have interests – chiefly the United States, which significantly has never signed on to UNCLOS and regularly claims other nations’ claims to territorial waterways which are clearly their own are ‘bizarre’ where they conflict with US interests – would do better to try reaching accommodation, which Canada has shown itself quite willing to do in the past.

          The chief quarrel is with the United States, as I suggested, who insists the passage is an international waterway because of its importance to shipping, much like the Bosporus and the Dardanelles. And we know that if Turkey insisted on Turkish use only, possession would be taken from them by force, and Turkey knows it, too. Canada is in an entirely different position, though. However, America’s chief reason for insisting it is an international waterway is that it does not wish to seek Canadian permission for its vessels, especially warships, to pass through the waterway – that would cement Canadian sovereignty. It wants to transit the waterway at its pleasure, although there is no reason at all to imagine permission, if solicited, would ever be refused. There are many additional issues, chief among them from a Canadian standpoint stewardship of the waterway, pollution issues and enforceability of territorial rights in the case of judicial proceedings for fouling the waterway with cargoes such as petroleum. The USA cares little for such quibbles, which it would if it thought for a minute it could claim it as an American territorial waterway.

          Jackasses. If any other countries truly believe Canada’s claim is ‘bizarre’, think for a moment who would suffer the consequences of a major oil spill. Then take the ‘international waterway’ claim to court – see you there. He might have called his byline, “Opinio Anus”.

          • Moscow Exile says:

            The British, however, bizarrely seem to claim that the straits between the United Kingdom and France are “English”.

            For their part, the French just call it “The Sleeve” (la manche), as do the Germans: Der Ärmelkanal — literally “The Sleeve Channel” — though they usually simply call it Der Kanal (again, the use of the definite article in Germanic languages to indicate something that is common knowledge, that one definitely knows about, as with “the Ukraine”, where one is not talking about any old Borderland).

            Didn’t the USA once have a serious dispute with that territory that eventually became British Columbia over passage through the archipelago where Chief Stooge now lives?

            I recall that George Picket, he who led the Army of Northern Virginia’s doomed eponymous charge on the last day of the Battle of Gettysburg, 1863, was threatening blood and thunder at British North Americans in that area in the 1850s. That was before Picket defected to the Confederacy, of course.

          • Warren says:

            No one is disputing Canada’s sovereignty over the islands of the northwest passage, No one is challenging Canada’s ownership of Baffin, Victoria, Prince of Wales Islands, etc. But the water between and surrounding Canada’s Arctic Archipelago are in dispute. No other country recognises Canada’s bizarre claims that it constitutes “internal waters”. Instead the consensus among foreign countries is that the waters between and surrounding the Canadian Arctic Archipelago are “international straits”. This includes the United States. The US reserves and intends to exercise its rights of navigation and overflight regarding the northwest passage. If Canada were to sign a bilateral agreement with the US regarding the northwest passage, as a signatory and ratified party of UNCLOS Canada could no derogate the rights of other state parties (Russia, Norway, Denmark, etc) of UNCLOS (Article 311).

            http://www.un.org/depts/los/convention_agreements/texts/unclos/part17.htm

            Transit through the Bosporus and Dardanelles are governed by the Montreux Convention, which only applies to foreign (non-Black sea countries) military vessels. The Montreux Convention is contrary to UNCLOS, however as Turkey has never signed or ratified UNCLOS, the Montreux Convention remains. Canada could theoretically renounce UNCLOS and sign a bilateral agreement with the US (another non-UNCLOS state) on the northwest passage. However, this would have profound and damaging implications for Canada’s reputation as “country that respects international law”.

            • marknesop says:

              And what does international law say about the distance from recognized coastlines a country may claim as its national territory? If the entirety of the waterway lies within the Canadian coastline and partially constitutes it, how can any of it be a international waterway?

      • marknesop says:

        An important point well made.

  25. Moscow Exile says:

    STUNNING SHOCK HORROR PUTIN SUSPICION FROM UK MEDIA!!!!!!!

    • Moscow Exile says:

      Lebedev’s independent Independent:

      Did Russia state broadcaster leak latest Sherlock episode? BBC launches investigation

      The BBC is trying to work out whether the final episode of its flagship Sherlock series was deliberately leaked by Russia’s state broadcaster.

      The British corporation aired the third and final instalment, The Final Problem, of one of its most internationally successful creations on Sunday night.

      But a Russian language version, featuring a three-second continuity announcement linking it to the country’s Channel One, emerged online the previous day.

      Channel One owns the rights to show Sherlock in Russia.

      A BBC source reportedly said the leak was “more than an accident” and a spokesman said: “BBC Worldwide takes breaches of our stringent content security protocols very seriously and we have initiated a full investigation into how this leak occurred”.

      Sherlock, which premiered in 2010, and features Benedict Cumberbatch, is streamed in more than 180 territories and the third series was the UK’s most watched drama of all time.

      Its 2016 New Year’s Day special, The Abominable Bride, was apparently the biggest overseas export of the last financial year after selling to 216 territories.

      This week’s leak mirrors a 2014 incident when unfinished footage from Doctor Who, whose writer Steven Moffat is also the producer-writer for Sherlock, trickled out of the BBC Worldwide Miami office.

      The Kremlin is believed to have been angered by a recent decision to expand the BBC World Service’s Russian language output.

      It is also understood Moscow threatened to freeze BBC finances in Russia and report Britain to watchdogs after Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) subsidiary NatWest considered closing the account of state-funded Russia Today.

      A Russian foreign ministry spokesman reportedly said the NatWest threat “reeked of” BBC intervention.

      Russia has repeatedly been blamed for a string of cyber-attacks, including the hacking of the US election.

      Ben Nimmo, an information defence fellow at the Atlantic Council think-thank, said: “As Sherlock Holmes said himself, ‘When you’ve eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth’.

      “There appears to be no profit motive, no benefit to the broadcaster from doing this. What remains is a political motive. The most obvious explanation is that this is punitive.”

      But Russia analyst and senior economist at HIS Global Insight Lilit Gevorgyan told The Telegraph: “It could be a simple case of poorly executed intellectual property handling.”

      The show’s producer Sue Vertue announced the leak on Saturday and tweeted: “Russian version of #Sherlock TFP has been illegally uploaded. Please don’t share it. You’ve done so well keeping it spoiler free. Nearly there.”

      Soft arses!

      • marknesop says:

        What a pity that it leaked to the enormous Russian-speaking majority of Europe.

      • yalensis says:

        So, did the KGB leak the spoiler that Sherlock and Watson get eaten up by a giant killer octopus? This was a quite a sensational ending to the series!

      • Lyttenburgh says:

        And what will be BBC’s retaliation, I wonder? They will leak the final episode of the latest season of “Univer” or “Voroniny“? Oh, horror, horror!..

        Actually, that’s kinda sad, that our Russian TV series suck so much. Oh, well!

        • Moscow Exile says:

          No they don’t! Betty Windsor thinks the Russian Sherlock Holmes is the best ever. Many others are of the same opinion.

          And there was a TV series I remember in the ’90s that was good: “Petersburg Secrets” I think it was called.

          It was indded “Petersburg Secrets”! Mrs. Exile’s just heard the theme music and wants to watch it again.

    • marknesop says:

      Yes, Russia must have reacted angrily somehow to the Beeb’s bold decision to expand its Russian-language output. The alternative – that it didn’t notice – doesn’t bear thinking about.

  26. Moscow Exile says:


    Thank God I am not a Moskal

    Слава героям!

  27. Special_sauce says:

    Some of you may have heard of Grover Furr, intrepid, honest, and largely ignored, scholar of Stalin and the Soviet era. Here’s his latest article. h/t twitter@RedKahina
    https://msuweb.montclair.edu/~furrg/research/gf_marxmem2016.html

    • yalensis says:

      I respect Grover’s work on Katyn.
      However — sigh — once again I am forced to defend Trotsky against Grover’s unfair slurs. In this case, for example:
      Leon Trotsky was evidently the first person to yoke the Soviet Union together with Nazi Germany by adopting the term “totalitarian.”21 The political usefulness of this connection blossomed after World War 2. It reinforced the concept of the “Free World,” which embraced all anticommunist states including the most violent and repressive, and the pro-Nazi forces of Eastern Europe, now rechristened “nationalists,” whose atrocities often exceeded even those of the Nazis themselves. It also distracted attention away from the violence and repressiveness of Western imperialism in Southeast Asia (Indochina, the Dutch East Indies), Africa (Kenya), and Latin America. Here the “Free World” refused to grant the freedom and democracy they claimed to support.

      Trotsky, who was long dead by then, cannot be held accountable for the post-WWII ideological concoctions which conflated Nazism and Communism as two equally-bad forms of a fake made-up political system called “totalitarianism”.
      The most that Trotsky did, in his writings, was some analytical comparisons of two completely different systems (Nazism and Soviet socialism), two systems which Trotsky made clear were based on completely different economic classes and ideologies, and yet possessing a couple of interesting similarities in the structures of the state organs and the intolerance of both types of governments towards dissident political factions.

      Trotsky’s writings show, factually, that he always defended the Soviet state against imperialist aggression, despite his personal hatred of Stalin. For example, this quote: “Against the imperialist foe we will defend the USSR with all our might. However, the conquests of the October revolution will serve the people only if they prove themselves capable of dealing with the Stalinist bureaucracy, as in their day they dealt with the Tsarist bureaucracy and the bourgeoisie.”

      Recall that Trotsky paid a heavy political price for his principled defense of the Soviet Union and the Red Army. After the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact was concluded, Trotsky lost about half of his followers overnight, worldwide; and along with them, all of his political influence. Most of his followers simply couldn’t stomach Molotov-Ribbentrop, even though Trotsky himself had no beef with it. Difference being, Trotsky had actually beein the government and army in the past, so he had a better sense of Realpolitik.

      In conclusion, Grover Furr is being unfair to Trotsky, like he always does.

      • Special_sauce says:

        But that’s what “Dictatorship of the Proletariat” means. It’s a dictatorship. Liberals, soc-dems, revisionists, renegades, libertarians, anarchists, as well as Nazis, don’t make waves. Especially when the Reptilian Order is breathing down your neck.

  28. Warren says:

    Published on 17 Jan 2017
    Russian President Vladimir Putin scorned people who “make-up such falsifications that are currently spread about the US President-elect,” saying they were “worse than prostitutes,” during a joint press conference with his Moldovan counterpart Igor Dodon, in Moscow, Monday.

    SOT, Vladimir Putin, President of Russia (Russian): “You know, there is a category of people who leave without saying goodbye, out of respect for the present situation and in order not to disturb anything. But there are people who are endlessly bidding farewells but do not leave. In my opinion, the outgoing US administration falls in the second category. We can see a major continuation of the political fight in the US despite the fact that the political elections are finished and they ended with a convincing victory of Mr. Trump.”

    SOT, Vladimir Putin, President of Russia (Russian): “I am not acquainted with Mr. Trump, I have not met him, I do not know what he will do in the international arena so I have no reason either to attack him, criticise him for something or defend him. We will not even address the Nobel Committee asking to reward him with a Nobel prize for mathematics, physics or some other subject. I do not have any reason to do so. But these false stories are utter nonsense.”

    SOT, Vladimir Putin, President of Russia (Russian): “When Trump came to Moscow a few years ago, he was not a politician and we did not know about his political ambitions. He was a businessman, one of the rich people in America. Does anyone really think that our security services chase every American billionaire? Of course not, it is complete nonsense.”

    SOT, Vladimir Putin, President of Russia (Russian): “Trump arrived [in Moscow] and immediately went to meet with the Moscow prostitutes? First, he is a grown man and secondly, he is a man who was engaged in the organisation of beauty contests and communicated with the most beautiful women in the world for many years. You know, I can hardly imagine that he ran into a hotel to meet with our girls with low social responsibility.”

    SOT, Vladimir Putin, President of Russia (Russian): “You know, there is something I would like to say. Prostitution is a serious, ugly social phenomenon because many women are involved in it as they have no other way to provide themselves. And it is pretty much the fault of the society and the state. But people who make-up such falsifications that are currently spread about the US President-elect, that are invented and used in the political struggle, those people are worse than prostitutes. They have no moral restraints.”

    • Lyttenburgh says:

      BTW, Putin’s remarque about “our [girls/smbs] with low social responsibility” is already a meme on the RuNet. It’s already applied to our so-called Oposition.

      • yalensis says:

        Lyt, do you have the Russian text?
        What is the Russian original to “girls with low social responsibility” ?

      • marknesop says:

        You could see that coming – just like the opposition was suddenly in love with gays as soon as it perceived a possible vulnerability for Putin and an opportunity to stand with the west, it will now take up the cause of prostitutes in hopes of winning their support. Good luck with that.

        • Jen says:

          Anyone willing to bet on any other marginalised and despised groups Lord Sauron might pick on next whose cause the West can take up? Charles Manson’s surviving groupies? Ageing serial killers?

      • Moscow Exile says:

        They are going great guns in some reports in the West about the same speech leading with Putin saying that Russian prostitutes are the “best in the world:

        Vladimir Putin: ‘Our prostitutes are the best in the world, but I doubt Donald Trump would fall for them’

        I presume that Putin’s evaluation of Russian whores was made tongue in cheek, but this is ignored in Western reports because…well, because everyone knows that Russians have no oral values and are inherently wicked.

        • Moscow Exile says:

          moral values for god’s sake!!!!!!

          I am working in half-light here and I touch-typing quickly! I can hardly see a bloody thing!

          Back to topic:

          The actual words of the Dark Lord as published officially by the Kremlin:

          Второе. «Трамп приехал и тут же побежал встречаться с московскими проститутками». Это человек, во-первых, взрослый уже, а во-вторых, человек, который не всю жизнь, но многие годы занимался организацией конкурсов красоты, общался с самыми красивыми женщинами мира. Знаете, я с трудом могу себе представить, что он побежал в отель встречаться с нашими девушками с пониженной социальной ответственностью. Хотя они самые лучшие в мире, безусловно. Но сомневаюсь, что Трамп клюнул на это..

          Official Kremlin translation:

          Second, concerning the allegation that Trump arrived in Moscow and the first thing he did was meet with Moscow prostitutes. First, he is an adult and, second, he has for many years sponsored beauty contests and had the chance to meet the world’s most beautiful women. Why would he run to a hotel to meet up with our girls of limited social responsibility? Although they are, of course, the best in the world. But I doubt that Trump fell for it.

          And the Telegraph (see link above), as did several other Western rags, led articles on this press conference with Putin’s statement about the quality of Russian prostitutes.

          ‘Cos I mean, you/ve got to get your priorities right when you’re propagandizing about the Evil Empire and reporting what the Evil One has said, haven’t you?

          • Moscow Exile says:

            Vladimir Putin Brags That Russia Has The World’s Best Whores

            “[Trump is] a grown man, and secondly he’s someone who has been involved with beauty contests for many years and has met the most beautiful women in the world. I find it hard to believe that he rushed to some hotel to meet girls of loose morals, although ours are undoubtedly the best in the world.”

            He said nothing about “loose morals”!

            HNHH — Hot News HIp Hop — linked above.

            HNHH is, according to a coment to the above-linked article: “a left wing extremist hangout of a few liberal white editors who piss off the userbase. People only come to HNHH for the comment section”.

          • Fern says:

            I’d interpret what Putin said as meaning women from the Russian Federation are the most attractive in the world and not necessarily as Russian ladies of the night being the best in the world. I have, however, also long suspected Putin of trolling the western press so either explanation is possible. There’s a video clip of John Sweeney (the BBC ‘journalist’ referred to in the comments above) collaring Putin where there’s what looks like a bit of a comedy routine between Putin and Peskov where Putin professes not to understand anything Sweeney is saying, waits until he’s finsihed speaking and then turns enquiringly to Peskov who translates, Putin replies which Peskov translates for Sweeney’s benefit. Sweeney then poses another of his killer questions and they go through the routine again. And again.

            • marknesop says:

              Yes, I agree. However, virtually every word which comes publicly out of Putin’s mouth is carefully parsed for value in misinterpretation, and if it is found worthy the western networks promptly saturation-bomb with their translation until nobody who can read English would ever believe you if you said it was deliberately mistranslated so as to create the impression of low, common ignorance or malfeasance. For my part I have never forgotten the world-wide circulation of Ahmedinijad’s quote that Israel must be ‘wiped off the map’; something he never, ever said.

  29. Cortes says:

    An entertaining account of the battle for the post of Canadian FM, with delicious assessment of Trudeau as denser than Fogh Rasmussen…

    http://johnhelmer.net/?p=17007#more-17007

    • marknesop says:

      I would go along with most of that – the performance of the Trudeau government, after an initial strong start which suggested he might be a different sort of politician, quickly settled into the ‘more style than substance’ groove that has resulted in impatience in the electorate and a weakening of popularity. The country just seems to be kind of coasting along, without any clear signs of a national plan or common goals. You see that when there is strong leadership, by a deft, accomplished, engaged and forward-looking manager who makes it all appear effortless although it is a great deal of work and preparation. You also see it when there is nobody at the helm, and the ship of state is merely responding to the vagaries of wind and tide.

      What I found most astonishing – and perhaps should not have, considering what jackleg fabricators politicians are as a group – was the clear evidence of lying far beyond ‘misspeaking’. Both Trudeau and Freeland claim to have had conversations with Putin, or said things to him which Moscow says never happened. Trudeau claims to have squared him off on the issue of Ukraine during the recent summit, and although both were present and they did speak to one another, the Kremlin says no such statement as that described was ever made. In the case of Freeland, she claims a conversation in Russian which Moscow says never took place. Obviously all parties cannot be telling the truth; equally obviously, somebody is lying.

      This ‘Slava Ukraine’ paean to Freeland’s appointment makes, perhaps inadvertently, the mostly-forgotten point that Kiev ‘hacked the American election’. It released damaging but ultimately misleading information on Trump adviser Paul Manafort, with the clear intent of throwing the election to Clinton. The release of the information had an immediate political effect; Manafort was dropped from the campaign, although there was no evidence that he was close to Putin at all or had any connection to him. Kiev just didn’t like the cut of his jib – nor that of Trump, either – and intervened to get rid of him. No mention now of that, at all. Kiev does not hack; it assists.

      • Jen says:

        A pattern is developing in which an Australian Prime Minister says he’ll shirt-front Lord Sauron over the issue of the MH17 shoot-down but the two end up cuddling koalas together instead. Then the Canadian Prime Minister claims to have spoken to the Dark Lord about Ukraine but the Kremlin records that although Justin Bieber Trudeau and Putin did meet and talk together, there was no verbal confrontation over Kiev. So it would seem that every time a Western politician claims s/he will say something sharp to the Dark Lord or has said something sharp, the odds are no such thing will take place or did take place.

        When it’s an issue of Justin Trudeau’s word against Putin’s, I guess we must Trust In Judo Expert.
        🙂

        • Moscow Exile says:

          All this is probably simply explained by the fact that no matter whatever they say as regards confronting Putin, their pants fill with shit when faced with the baleful glare of the Dark Lord.

  30. Special_sauce says:

    Putin may regret the coming of Trump. Trump says NATO is “obsolete”. But he doesn’t want to ditch it; he wants to strengthen it. Looking into my crystal ball, I see Trump threatening the slackers with sanctions if they don’t pony up for more “security”, until such time as the Generals feel confident of a successful blitzkrieg against “aggresive” Russia.

    • marknesop says:

      I am fairly confident Putin would have regretted the coming of Clinton far more. European leaders despise Trump as a parvenu Johnny-Come-Lately new-money yahoo, and are sweating to vie with one another for who can most dramatically snub him and put him in his place. For all their pretenses to sophistication, European leaders are stuck-up snobs who prefer short-term gratification, and could not lead a piss-up in a brewery. They will be looking to freeze out Trump as best they may and make a fool of him diplomatically, without alienating the deal-makers in Washington. And NATO is not going to be foremost in Trump’s mind no matter how he feels about it – he is dealing with a low-grade insurrection at home, and his immediate problems will not be international.

  31. Drutten says:

    I can’t believe I’ve missed this gem. I have little love for Fox or their hosts, but that slimy Russophobic son of a bitch Eichenwald is ten times worse and this attempt at an interview is just amazing:

    Look at how he dodges everything and after multiple prompts starts rambling about great American patriots going to work every day and so on. I just want to strangle the guy.

  32. et Al says:

    Neuters: Exclusive: U.S.-supplied drones disappoint Ukraine at the front lines
    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-ukraine-drones-exclusive-idUSKBN14A26D?

    Millions of dollars’ worth of U.S.-supplied drones that Kiev had hoped would help in its war against Russian-backed separatists have proven ineffective against jamming and hacking, Ukrainian officials say.

    The 72 Raven RQ-11B Analog mini-drones were so disappointing following their arrival this summer that Natan Chazin, an advisor to Ukraine’s military with deep knowledge of the country’s drone program, said if it were up to him, he would return them.

    “From the beginning, it was the wrong decision to use these drones in our (conflict),” Chazin, an advisor to the chief of the general staff of Ukraine’s armed forces, told Reuters….
    ####

    More at the link.

    So, why would the US offer old skool drones to the Ukraine? Maybe a) the UAF are incompetent and it was assumed at least one would be captured intact; b) used as bait to measure and evaluate countermeasures against the drones so that it could be incorporated in to newer designs; c) never serious in the first place; d) a combination of the above – using the UAF as guinea pigs who could be conveniently sacrifices without loss of American or real allied life?

  33. Northern Star says:

    The Yanks are HERE!!!!!!!

    • Special_sauce says:

      Wow, that is so grotesque, couldn’t finish. The comments on youtube, however, are a hoot!

      • Northern Star says:

        Ummm,,the comment LZ is real hot on this video:

        Александр Чернов
        “lol, idiots. Desert camouflage in winter Europe.

        subsimer
        haha dalbajob, a nafik etot kamufliaz vopshe nuzn jesli po teplovizoru tanki i tak vidni daun! luche nachinaj dut rizinavie tanki lox

        metalhead 93
        metalhead 931 day ago (edited)
        nobody gives a shit they got thermal sights they could see tanks 3 miles away its not ww1 buddy its 2017

        Александр Чернов
        Александр Чернов1 day ago
        Lol moron. Thermal sights even if tank stands with turned off engines? Thermal sights for a soldier with grenade launcher or RPG? Or do you really, anti-russian bastard, think that all ATGM or anti-tank artillery use thermal sights? Do you, fat moron, think that all tanks always rely on thermal sights while aiming a target? Do you think that helicopters of jets use thermal sights when they seek targets on the ground? Then why did they use desert camouflage in the Middle East, or green camouflage when they traveled across the Europe last year?”

        LOL!!!!!

  34. Warren says:

    Published on 17 Jan 2017
    Trump: The Kremlin Candidate?
    In the week of the new President’s inauguration, Panorama reports on Russia’s role in Donald Trump’s election victory and asks what’s behind the relationship between Vladimir Putin and Trump. Reporter John Sweeney – who has met and challenged both men – travels to Moscow and the United States to find out how sure we can be that Russian cyber-warriors influenced the US election and if there’s any truth to claims that Russian intelligence has compromising material about the President elect. And from Lithuania and the battlefields of Ukraine, he investigates what this will mean for security in Europe and the rest of the world.

    Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use.
    No copyright infringement intended, if you require this video to be removed, please contact me and it will be done ASAP!

  35. Warren says:

    Published on 17 Jan 2017
    The BBC’s flagship current affairs programme has aired an edition on the alleged financial ties between U.S. President-elect Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin. It also reports on whether Russia played a key role in Trump’s election success. Making its assumptions very clear, the BBC called the programme ‘The ‘Kremlin Candidate’. RT’s Ilya Petrenko explains how pulling-in the viewers often means rolling with the rumours.

  36. et Al says:

    Seradata Space Intelligence:Soyuz-U launch failure blamed on particle contamination induced third stage engine failure
    http://seradata.com/SSI/2017/01/soyuz-u-launch-failure-blamed-on-particle-contamination-induced-third-stage-engine-failure/

    A Roscosmos State Corporation investigation, into the launch failure of a Soyuz-U launch vehicle which lost the Progress MS-04 cargo mission to the International Space Station, has found a likely cause: particle contamination in the third stage engine oxidiser pump.

    The explosive failure of the oxidiser system tank of the rocket engine led to a premature separation of the payload, and caused it to be bumped by the third stage as well. The RD-0110 (11D55) is believed to have had its oxidiser fail and catch fire as the result of particle contamination within its workings. This contamination can be the result of poor workmanship directly introducing these particles, improper assembly of the rotor shaft causing rubbing and/or a vibrational imbalance effect…
    ####

    How is this still being missed by quality control if that is the actual cause?

    • marknesop says:

      Quality Control improves the detection of failed or prone-to-fail parts, but does not eliminate the risk. Inspectors follow protocols which mandate that the inspector test, let’s say, three cogs out of a box of nine, the three to be chosen at random. That still leaves six which were not tested, and commonly tests focus on measurement to see if parts are physically within tolerances and electric/electronic inputs register correctly with test equipment. Quality Control at the level of rocket engineering probably does include some sort of test for particle contamination, but I don’t know what it would be and it might be a simple wipe test for residue. The contamination might have been missed for a variety of reasons even with the inspector doing his/her job by the book.

      You can bet the procedure will be tightened up, though, based on these findings.

  37. et Al says:

    O-bomber has commuted Chelsea Manning’s sentence. She’ll be out on May 17.

    It’s funny what people do when they know that they won’t be responsible any more.

    And therein lies the rub. In a modern democracy, a politician should have courage to follow one’s convictions (!) and not pander to focus groups or how it may play in the press, except that is how much of western democracy has behaved since the end of the Cold War and the rise of the spinners with Bill Clintion & Tony Blair. Conviction politics as long as it is carefully aligned with public sentiment. Oh, and never giving an honest answer.

  38. Warren says:

    Published on 17 Jan 2017
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  39. Cortes says:

    Bearing in mind

    1. HAL = <IBM and

    2. HAL's instructor is Mr Langley

    Here's the Donald's first day in office

  40. et Al says:

    Antiwar.com: Key NATO Commander Agrees With Trump, NATO Is Obsolete
    http://news.antiwar.com/2017/01/17/key-nato-commander-agrees-with-trump-nato-is-obsolete/

    Gen. Mercier Says NATO Too Focused on Deploying Troops Abroad

    With most of the political leadership in other NATO member nations lash US President-elect Donald Trump for calling the alliance “obsolete,” he doesn’t appear to be alone, with top NATO commander Gen. Denis Mercier saying he agrees that there are parts of NATO which are absolutely obsolete.

    Gen. Mercier is France’s Air Force Chief of Staff as well as NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, and says he believes NATO is far too focused on deploying troops abroad, and sending expeditionary forces into various countries, singling out Afghanistan in particular.

    Mercier argued that NATO should revamp its anti-terror efforts to focus on helping countries develop their own long-term plans for counter-terrorism operations instead of just deploying NATO troops around the world.

    The Supreme Allied Command Transformation (ACT) is meant to focus on future threats, and its express purpose is to modernize parts of NATO that are approaching obsolescence. It is not wholly surprising, then, that the commander would see significant parts of NATO that are obsolete, though the fact that he was willing to public affirm as much right now reflects a major break with the political leadership, which is desperate to present NATO as both relevant and irreplaceable.
    ####

    So yet another attempt by NATO to reinvent itself without admitting fault. Clever spin. It also sets the ground for a possible new security architecture for Europe. If NATO has this new role and tat is where the resources will go, then by definition the ‘Russia Threat (TM)’ is not so much of threat. Yet again it is not said or done that you need to keep an eye on.

    This segues in to Trump’s suggestion of nuke talks which will almost certainly cover tactical nuclear weapons and open the possibility of the US permanently removing them nukes from Europe so kicking out a key pillar of NATO. It’s going to get interesting.

  41. Moscow Exile says:

    Gazprom bills Naftogaz $5.3 bln for gas under take-or-pay provisions for 2016, claims could grow to $37 bln

    Anyone think they’ll cough up?

    🙂

    Reminds me of where I used to live for a while as a kid and there was this court nearby with council flats surrounding it. The rent man used to come every week and stand forlornly in the middle of the courtyard in the foolish hope that someone would pay up at least some money owed: you see, he had just got fed up of climbing the stairs every week and banging on doors in vain.

    Every week he used to wait in the courtyard, and every week he used to walk away disappointed.

    I don’t recall anyone ever paying him.

    I used to think he really had a shit job.

    I was 11/12 years old at the time.

  42. Moscow Exile says:

    Auntie BBC allows the Russian “main opposition leader” to mouth it off in a video of a waste-of-space “Hard Talk” interview.

    No, not Zyuganov of the CPRF but Washington’s agent Navalny:

    Trump’s views are ‘100% different’ to Putin’s, says Alexey Navalny

    Russia’s main opposition leader, Alexey Navalny, tells the BBC he’s disappointed that US President-elect Donald Trump is ready to trust President Vladimir Putin.

    When will they tell the truth, namely that hardly anyone in Russia gives a flying fuck about Navalny?

    • et Al says:

      It’s pretty amazing that the super intelligent President to be Navalny is so open in his criticizm of DT. Is he trying not to curry favor with the very soon to be Prez? Suck eggs and get salmonella Navalny! It certainly makes it much easier for DT to tell all those f/wads who pitched in on Killary’s side to f/o.

  43. Moscow Exile says:


    Holy Joe?


    Порошенко рассмеялся во время молитвы в память о жертвах «евромайдана»
    Poroshenko started to laugh out during a prayer in memory of the “Euromaidan” ‘victims

  44. Moscow Exile says:

    Hatred from “Our Canada” Ukrainian Nazis, as per usual:


    In Japan they grow human organs from stem cells. In Russia they grow single cells, give them a stem cell each, and then gather organs from them

    • Moscow Exile says:

      That’s not come out right!

      I think what she’s trying to say (“she” beause I’m sure it’s a woman who runs this “Our Canada” outfit) is that whereas in Japan they grow organs from stem cells, in Russia they create clones from single cells and a stem cell.

      The picture of Russian soldiers on parade in ceremonial uniform is supposed to be evidence of such cloning undertaken in Mordor.

      These aren’t clones, though:

      because they’re Yukies.

  45. Jeremn says:

    Ukraine has submitted a claim to the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

    Ukraine’s case is that rebels shot down MH17. This undermines Bellingcat’s case that the Russian brigade did it. A Dutch MP has noted this mismatch in accusations, and Bellingcat’s carefully built case that Russian Soldiers are Evil seems in danger:

  46. et Al says:

    Nasa Watch: NASA Uses Bait and Switch Tactics To Buy Soyuz Seats
    http://nasawatch.com/archives/2017/01/nasa-uses-bait.html

    “NASA is considering contracting with The Boeing Company (Boeing) for crew transportation services to and from the International Space Station (ISS) on the Russian Soyuz vehicle. This transportation would be for one crewmember in the Fall of 2017 and one crewmember in the Spring of 2018. NASA is considering purchasing these services from Boeing, without competition, because no other vehicles are currently capable of providing these services in Fall 2017 or Spring 2018….

    …Russia recently announced its plans to decrement the Russian crew count onboard ISS from three to two, beginning in CY 2017. As a result of Russia reducing its crew count by one crewmember, there is now an available Soyuz seat in the 2017-2018 timeframe on each of the two planned spacecraft that would have otherwise had two Russian crew aboard. Of the 24 total Soyuz seats available in 2017-2018, the three seats resulting from the Russian crew decrement are the only available means of transporting additional US crewmembers to ISS during this period.”

    “An agreement was recently reached between the Boeing Company and S.P. Korolev Rocket and Space Public Corporation, Energia (“RSC Energia”), who is the manufacturer of the Soyuz spacecraft and has the legal rights to sell the seats and associated services…
    ####

    Russia makes nothing the US needs apparently!

  47. Chinese American says:

    Utter silence from the mainstream media on Deir Ezzor.

    • et Al says:

      Which is why we have Moon of Alabama & Vinyard the Saker. If the Pork Pie News Networks refuse to pull up their socks, then even more people will go elsewhere for their socks!

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