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Colleagues, ladies and gentlemen, friends, it is a pleasure to welcome you to the XI meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club. It was mentioned already that the club has new co-organisers this year. They include Russian non-governmental organisations, expert groups and leading universities. The idea was also raised of broadening the discussions to include not just issues related to Russia itself but also global politics and the economy. I hope that these changes in organisation and content will bolster the clubâs influence as a leading discussion and expert forum. At the same time, I hope the âValdai spiritâ will remain - this free and open atmosphere and chance to express all manner of very different and frank opinions. Let me say in this respect that I will also not let you down and will speak directly and frankly. Some of what I say might seem a bit too harsh, but if we do not speak directly and honestly about what we really think, then there is little point in even meeting in this way. It would be better in that case just to keep to diplomatic get-togethers, where no one says anything of real sense and, recalling the words of one famous diplomat, you realise that diplomats have tongues so as not to speak the truth. We get together for other reasons. We get together so as to talk frankly with each other. We need to be direct and blunt today not so as to trade barbs, but so as to attempt to get to the bottom of what is actually happening in the world, try to understand why the world is becoming less safe and more unpredictable, and why the risks are increasing everywhere around us. Todayâs discussion took place under the theme: New Rules or a Game without Rules. I think that this formula accurately describes the historic turning point we have reached today and the choice we all face. There is nothing new of course in the idea that the world is changing very fast. I know this is something you have spoken about at the discussions today. It is certainly hard not to notice the dramatic transformations in global politics and the economy, public life, and in industry, information and social technologies. Let me ask you right now to forgive me if I end up repeating what some of the discussionâs participants have already said. Itâs practically impossible to avoid. You have already held detailed discussions, but I will set out my point of view. It will coincide with other participantsâ views on some points and differ on others. As we analyse todayâs situation, let us not forget historyâs lessons. First of all, changes in the world order â" and what we are seeing today are events on this scale â" have usually been accompanied by if not global war and conflict, then by chains of intensive local-level conflicts. Second, global politics is above all about economic leadership, issues of war and peace, and the humanitarian dimension, including human rights. The world is full of contradictions today. We need to be frank in asking each other if we have a reliable safety net in place. Sadly, there is no guarantee and no certainty that the current system of global and regional security is able to protect us from upheavals. This system has become seriously weakened, fragmented and deformed. The international and regional political, economic, and cultural cooperation organisations are also going through difficult times. Yes, many of the mechanisms we have for ensuring the world order were created quite a long time ago now, including and above all in the period immediately following World War II. Let me stress that the solidity of the system created back then rested not only on the balance of power and the rights of the victor countries, but on the fact that this systemâs âfounding fathersâ had respect for each other, did not try to put the squeeze on others, but attempted to reach agreements. The main thing is that this system needs to develop, and despite its various shortcomings, needs to at least be capable of keeping the worldâs current problems within certain limits and regulating the intensity of the natural competition between countries. It is my conviction that we could not take this mechanism of checks and balances that we built over the last decades, sometimes with such effort and difficulty, and simply tear it apart without building anything in its place. Otherwise we would be left with no instruments other than brute force. What we needed to do was to carry out a rational reconstruction and adapt it the new realities in the system of international relations. But the United States, having declared itself the winner of the Cold War, saw no need for this. Instead of establishing a new balance of power, essential for maintaining order and stability, they took steps that threw the system into sharp and deep imbalance. The Cold War ended, but it did not end with the signing of a peace treaty with clear and transparent agreements on respecting existing rules or creating new rules and standards. This created the impression that the so-called âvictorsâ in the Cold War had decided to pressure events and reshape the world to suit their own needs and interests. If the existing system of international relations, international law and the checks and balances in place got in the way of these aims, this system was declared worthless, outdated and in need of immediate demolition. Pardon the analogy, but this is the way nouveaux riches behave when they suddenly end up with a great fortune, in this case, in the shape of world leadership and domination. Instead of managing their wealth wisely, for their own benefit too of course, I think they have committed many follies. We have entered a period of differing interpretations and deliberate silences in world politics. International law has been forced to retreat over and over by the onslaught of legal nihilism. Objectivity and justice have been sacrificed on the altar of political expediency. Arbitrary interpretations and biased assessments have replaced legal norms. At the same time, total control of the global mass media has made it possible when desired to portray white as black and black as white. In a situation where you had domination by one country and its allies, or its satellites rather, the search for global solutions often turned into an attempt to impose their own universal recipes. This groupâs ambitions grew so big that they started presenting the policies they put together in their corridors of power as the view of the entire international community. But this is not the case. The very notion of ânational sovereigntyâ became a relative value for most countries. In essence, what was being proposed was the formula: the greater the loyalty towards the worldâs sole power centre, the greater this or that ruling regimeâs legitimacy. We will have a free discussion afterwards and I will be happy to answer your questions and would also like to use my right to ask you questions. Let someone try to disprove the arguments that I just set out during the upcoming discussion. The measures taken against those who refuse to submit are well-known and have been tried and tested many times. They include use of force, economic and propaganda pressure, meddling in domestic affairs, and appeals to a kind of âsupra-legalâ legitimacy when they need to justify illegal intervention in this or that conflict or toppling inconvenient regimes. Of late, we have increasing evidence too that outright blackmail has been used with regard to a number of leaders. It is not for nothing that âbig brotherâ is spending billions of dollars on keeping the whole world, including its own closest allies, under surveillance. Letâs ask ourselves, how comfortable are we with this, how safe are we, how happy living in this world, and how fair and rational has it become? Maybe, we have no real reasons to worry, argue and ask awkward questions? Maybe the United Statesâ exceptional position and the way they are carrying out their leadership really is a blessing for us all, and their meddling in events all around the world is bringing peace, prosperity, progress, growth and democracy, and we should maybe just relax and enjoy it all? Let me say that this is not the case, absolutely not the case. A unilateral diktat and imposing oneâs own models produces the opposite result. Instead of settling conflicts it leads to their escalation, instead of sovereign and stable states we see the growing spread of chaos, and instead of democracy there is support for a very dubious public ranging from open neo-fascists to Islamic radicals. Why do they support such people? They do this because they decide to use them as instruments along the way in achieving their goals but then burn their fingers and recoil. I never cease to be amazed by the way that our partners just keep stepping on the same rake, as we say here in Russia, that is to say, make the same mistake over and over. They once sponsored Islamic extremist movements to fight the Soviet Union. Those groups got their battle experience in Afghanistan and later gave birth to the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. The West if not supported, at least closed its eyes, and, I would say, gave information, political and financial support to international terroristsâ invasion of Russia (we have not forgotten this) and the Central Asian regionâs countries. Only after horrific terrorist attacks were committed on US soil itself did the United States wake up to the common threat of terrorism. Let me remind you that we were the first country to support the American people back then, the first to react as friends and partners to the terrible tragedy of September 11. During my conversations with American and European leaders, I always spoke of the need to fight terrorism together, as a challenge on a global scale. We cannot resign ourselves to and accept this threat, cannot cut it into separate pieces using double standards. Our partners expressed agreement, but a little time passed and we ended up back where we started. First there was the military operation in Iraq, then in Libya, which got pushed to the brink of falling apart. Why was Libya pushed into this situation? Today it is a country in danger of breaking apart and has become a training ground for terrorists. Only the current Egyptian leadershipâs determination and wisdom saved this key Arab country from chaos and having extremists run rampant. In Syria, as in the past, the United States and its allies started directly financing and arming rebels and allowing them to fill their ranks with mercenaries from various countries. Let me ask where do these rebels get their money, arms and military specialists? Where does all this come from? How did the notorious ISIL manage to become such a powerful group, essentially a real armed force? As for financing sources, today, the money is coming not just from drugs, production of which has increased not just by a few percentage points but many-fold, since the international coalition forces have been present in Afghanistan. You are aware of this. The terrorists are getting money from selling oil too. Oil is produced in territory controlled by the terrorists, who sell it at dumping prices, produce it and transport it. But someone buys this oil, resells it, and makes a profit from it, not thinking about the fact that they are thus financing terrorists who could come sooner or later to their own soil and sow destruction in their own countries. Where do they get new recruits? In Iraq, after Saddam Hussein was toppled, the stateâs institutions, including the army, were left in ruins. We said back then, be very, very careful. You are driving people out into the street, and what will they do there? Donât forget (rightfully or not) that they were in the leadership of a large regional power, and what are you now turning them into? What was the result? Tens of thousands of soldiers, officers and former Baath Party activists were turned out into the streets and today have joined the rebelsâ ranks. Perhaps this is what explains why the Islamic State group has turned out so effective? In military terms, it is acting very effectively and has some very professional people. Russia warned repeatedly about the dangers of unilateral military actions, intervening in sovereign statesâ affairs, and flirting with extremists and radicals. We insisted on having the groups fighting the central Syrian government, above all the Islamic State, included on the lists of terrorist organisations. But did we see any results? We appealed in vain. We sometimes get the impression that our colleagues and friends are constantly fighting the consequences of their own policies, throw all their effort into addressing the risks they themselves have created, and pay an ever-greater price. Colleagues, this period of unipolar domination has convincingly demonstrated that having only one power centre does not make global processes more manageable. On the contrary, this kind of unstable construction has shown its inability to fight the real threats such as regional conflicts, terrorism, drug trafficking, religious fanaticism, chauvinism and neo-Nazism. At the same time, it has opened the road wide for inflated national pride, manipulating public opinion and letting the strong bully and suppress the weak. Essentially, the unipolar world is simply a means of justifying dictatorship over people and countries. The unipolar world turned out too uncomfortable, heavy and unmanageable a burden even for the self-proclaimed leader. Comments along this line were made here just before and I fully agree with this. This is why we see attempts at this new historic stage to recreate a semblance of a quasi-bipolar world as a convenient model for perpetuating American leadership. It does not matter who takes the place of the centre of evil in American propaganda, the USSRâs old place as the main adversary. It could be Iran, as a country seeking to acquire nuclear technology, China, as the worldâs biggest economy, or Russia, as a nuclear superpower. Today, we are seeing new efforts to fragment the world, draw new dividing lines, put together coalitions not built for something but directed against someone, anyone, create the image of an enemy as was the case during the Cold War years, and obtain the right to this leadership, or diktat if you wish. The situation was presented this way during the Cold War. We all understand this and know this. The United States always told its allies: âWe have a common enemy, a terrible foe, the centre of evil, and we are defending you, our allies, from this foe, and so we have the right to order you around, force you to sacrifice your political and economic interests and pay your share of the costs for this collective defence, but we will be the ones in charge of it all of course.â In short, we see today attempts in a new and changing world to reproduce the familiar models of global management, and all this so as to guarantee their [the USâ] exceptional position and reap political and economic dividends. But these attempts are increasingly divorced from reality and are in contradiction with the worldâs diversity. Steps of this kind inevitably create confrontation and countermeasures and have the opposite effect to the hoped-for goals. We see what happens when politics rashly starts meddling in the economy and the logic of rational decisions gives way to the logic of confrontation that only hurt oneâs own economic positions and interests, including national business interests. Joint economic projects and mutual investment objectively bring countries closer together and help to smooth out current problems in relations between states. But today, the global business community faces unprecedented pressure from Western governments. What business, economic expediency and pragmatism can we speak of when we hear slogans such as âthe homeland is in dangerâ, âthe free world is under threatâ, and âdemocracy is in jeopardyâ? And so everyone needs to mobilise. That is what a real mobilisation policy looks like. Sanctions are already undermining the foundations of world trade, the WTO rules and the principle of inviolability of private property. They are dealing a blow to liberal model of globalisation based on markets, freedom and competition, which, let me note, is a model that has primarily benefited precisely the Western countries. And now they risk losing trust as the leaders of globalisation. We have to ask ourselves, why was this necessary? After all, the United Statesâ prosperity rests in large part on the trust of investors and foreign holders of dollars and US securities. This trust is clearly being undermined and signs of disappointment in the fruits of globalisation are visible now in many countries. The well-known Cyprus precedent and the politically motivated sanctions have only strengthened the trend towards seeking to bolster economic and financial sovereignty and countriesâ or their regional groupsâ desire to find ways of protecting themselves from the risks of outside pressure. We already see that more and more countries are looking for ways to become less dependent on the dollar and are setting up alternative financial and payments systems and reserve currencies. I think that our American friends are quite simply cutting the branch they are sitting on. You cannot mix politics and the economy, but this is what is happening now. I have always thought and still think today that politically motivated sanctions were a mistake that will harm everyone, but I am sure that we will come back to this subject later. We know how these decisions were taken and who was applying the pressure. But let me stress that Russia is not going to get all worked up, get offended or come begging at anyoneâs door. Russia is a self-sufficient country. We will work within the foreign economic environment that has taken shape, develop domestic production and technology and act more decisively to carry out transformation. Pressure from outside, as has been the case on past occasions, will only consolidate our society, keep us alert and make us concentrate on our main development goals. Of course the sanctions are a hindrance. They are trying to hurt us through these sanctions, block our development and push us into political, economic and cultural isolation, force us into backwardness in other words. But let me say yet again that the world is a very different place today. We have no intention of shutting ourselves off from anyone and choosing some kind of closed development road, trying to live in autarky. We are always open to dialogue, including on normalising our economic and political relations. We are counting here on the pragmatic approach and position of business communities in the leading countries. Some are saying today that Russia is supposedly turning its back on Europe - such words were probably spoken already here too during the discussions - and is looking for new business partners, above all in Asia. Let me say that this is absolutely not the case. Our active policy in the Asian-Pacific region began not just yesterday and not in response to sanctions, but is a policy that we have been following for a good many years now. Like many other countries, including Western countries, we saw that Asia is playing an ever greater role in the world, in the economy and in politics, and there is simply no way we can afford to overlook these developments. Let me say again that everyone is doing this, and we will do so to, all the more so as a large part of our country is geographically in Asia. Why should we not make use of our competitive advantages in this area? It would be extremely shortsighted not to do so. Developing economic ties with these countries and carrying out joint integration projects also creates big incentives for our domestic development. Todayâs demographic, economic and cultural trends all suggest that dependence on a sole superpower will objectively decrease. This is something that European and American experts have been talking and writing about too. Perhaps developments in global politics will mirror the developments we are seeing in the global economy, namely, intensive competition for specific niches and frequent change of leaders in specific areas. This is entirely possible. There is no doubt that humanitarian factors such as education, science, healthcare and culture are playing a greater role in global competition. This also has a big impact on international relations, including because this âsoft powerâ resource will depend to a great extent on real achievements in developing human capital rather than on sophisticated propaganda tricks. At the same time, the formation of a so-called polycentric world (I would also like to draw attention to this, colleagues) in and of itself does not improve stability; in fact, it is more likely to be the opposite. The goal of reaching global equilibrium is turning into a fairly difficult puzzle, an equation with many unknowns. So, what is in store for us if we choose not to live by the rules â" even if they may be strict and inconvenient â" but rather live without any rules at all? And that scenario is entirely possible; we cannot rule it out, given the tensions in the global situation. Many predictions can already be made, taking into account current trends, and unfortunately, they are not optimistic. If we do not create a clear system of mutual commitments and agreements, if we do not build the mechanisms for managing and resolving crisis situations, the symptoms of global anarchy will inevitably grow. Today, we already see a sharp increase in the likelihood of a whole set of violent conflicts with either direct or indirect participation by the worldâs major powers. And the risk factors include not just traditional multinational conflicts, but also the internal instability in separate states, especially when we talk about nations located at the intersections of major statesâ geopolitical interests, or on the border of cultural, historical, and economic civilizational continents. Ukraine, which Iâm sure was discussed at length and which we will discuss some more, is one of the example of such sorts of conflicts that affect international power balance, and I think it will certainly not be the last. From here emanates the next real threat of destroying the current system of arms control agreements. And this dangerous process was launched by the United States of America when it unilaterally withdrew from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty in 2002, and then set about and continues today to actively pursue the creation of its global missile defence system. Colleagues, friends, I want to point out that we did not start this. Once again, we are sliding into the times when, instead of the balance of interests and mutual guarantees, it is fear and the balance of mutual destruction that prevent nations from engaging in direct conflict. In absence of legal and political instruments, arms are once again becoming the focal point of the global agenda; they are used wherever and however, without any UN Security Council sanctions. And if the Security Council refuses to produce such decisions, then it is immediately declared to be an outdated and ineffective instrument. Many states do not see any other ways of ensuring their sovereignty but to obtain their own bombs. This is extremely dangerous. We insist on continuing talks; we are not only in favour of talks, but insist on continuing talks to reduce nuclear arsenals. The less nuclear weapons we have in the world, the better. And we are ready for the most serious, concrete discussions on nuclear disarmament â" but only serious discussions without any double standards. What do I mean? Today, many types of high-precision weaponry are already close to mass-destruction weapons in terms of their capabilities, and in the event of full renunciation of nuclear weapons or radical reduction of nuclear potential, nations that are leaders in creating and producing high-precision systems will have a clear military advantage. Strategic parity will be disrupted, and this is likely to bring destabilization. The use of a so-called first global pre-emptive strike may become tempting. In short, the risks do not decrease, but intensify. The next obvious threat is the further escalation of ethnic, religious, and social conflicts. Such conflicts are dangerous not only as such, but also because they create zones of anarchy, lawlessness, and chaos around them, places that are comfortable for terrorists and criminals, where piracy, human trafficking, and drug trafficking flourish. Incidentally, at the time, our colleagues tried to somehow manage these processes, use regional conflicts and design âcolour revolutionsâ to suit their interests, but the genie escaped the bottle. It looks like the controlled chaos theory fathers themselves do not know what to do with it; there is disarray in their ranks. We closely follow the discussions by both the ruling elite and the expert community. It is enough to look at the headlines of the Western press over the last year. The same people are called fighters for democracy, and then Islamists; first they write about revolutions and then call them riots and upheavals. The result is obvious: the further expansion of global chaos. Colleagues, given the global situation, it is time to start agreeing on fundamental things. This is incredibly important and necessary; this is much better than going back to our own corners. The more we all face common problems, the more we find ourselves in the same boat, so to speak. And the logical way out is in cooperation between nations, societies, in finding collective answers to increasing challenges, and in joint risk management. Granted, some of our partners, for some reason, remember this only when it suits their interests. Practical experience shows that joint answers to challenges are not always a panacea; and we need to understand this. Moreover, in most cases, they are hard to reach; it is not easy to overcome the differences in national interests, the subjectivity of different approaches, particularly when it comes to nations with different cultural and historical traditions. But nevertheless, we have examples when, having common goals and acting based on the same criteria, together we achieved real success. Let me remind you about solving the problem of chemical weapons in Syria, and the substantive dialogue on the Iranian nuclear programme, as well as our work on North Korean issues, which also has some positive results. Why canât we use this experience in the future to solve local and global challenges? What could be the legal, political, and economic basis for a new world order that would allow for stability and security, while encouraging healthy competition, not allowing the formation of new monopolies that hinder development? It is unlikely that someone could provide absolutely exhaustive, ready-made solutions right now. We will need extensive work with participation by a wide range of governments, global businesses, civil society, and such expert platforms as ours. However, it is obvious that success and real results are only possible if key participants in international affairs can agree on harmonising basic interests, on reasonable self-restraint, and set the example of positive and responsible leadership. We must clearly identify where unilateral actions end and we need to apply multilateral mechanisms, and as part of improving the effectiveness of international law, we must resolve the dilemma between the actions by international community to ensure security and human rights and the principle of national sovereignty and non-interference in the internal affairs of any state. Those very collisions increasingly lead to arbitrary external interference in complex internal processes, and time and again, they provoke dangerous conflicts between leading global players. The issue of maintaining sovereignty becomes almost paramount in maintaining and strengthening global stability. Clearly, discussing the criteria for the use of external force is extremely difficult; it is practically impossible to separate it from the interests of particular nations. However, it is far more dangerous when there are no agreements that are clear to everyone, when no clear conditions are set for necessary and legal interference. I will add that international relations must be based on international law, which itself should rest on moral principles such as justice, equality and truth. Perhaps most important is respect for oneâs partners and their interests. This is an obvious formula, but simply following it could radically change the global situation. I am certain that if there is a will, we can restore the effectiveness of the international and regional institutions system. We do not even need to build anything anew, from the scratch; this is not a âgreenfield,â especially since the institutions created after World War II are quite universal and can be given modern substance, adequate to manage the current situation. This is true of improving the work of the UN, whose central role is irreplaceable, as well as the OSCE, which, over the course of 40 years, has proven to be a necessary mechanism for ensuring security and cooperation in the Euro-Atlantic region. I must say that even now, in trying to resolve the crisis in southeast Ukraine, the OSCE is playing a very positive role. In light of the fundamental changes in the international environment, the increase in uncontrollability and various threats, we need a new global consensus of responsible forces. Itâs not about some local deals or a division of spheres of influence in the spirit of classic diplomacy, or somebodyâs complete global domination. I think that we need a new version of interdependence. We should not be afraid of it. On the contrary, this is a good instrument for harmonising positions. This is particularly relevant given the strengthening and growth of certain regions on the planet, which process objectively requires institutionalisation of such new poles, creating powerful regional organisations and developing rules for their interaction. Cooperation between these centres would seriously add to the stability of global security, policy and economy. But in order to establish such a dialogue, we need to proceed from the assumption that all regional centres and integration projects forming around them need to have equal rights to development, so that they can complement each other and nobody can force them into conflict or opposition artificially. Such destructive actions would break down ties between states, and the states themselves would be subjected to extreme hardship, or perhaps even total destruction. I would like to remind you of the last yearâs events. We have told our American and European partners that hasty backstage decisions, for example, on Ukraineâs association with the EU, are fraught with serious risks to the economy. We didnât even say anything about politics; we spoke only about the economy, saying that such steps, made without any prior arrangements, touch on the interests of many other nations, including Russia as Ukraineâs main trade partner, and that a wide discussion of the issues is necessary. Incidentally, in this regard, I will remind you that, for example, the talks on Russiaâs accession to the WTO lasted 19 years. This was very difficult work, and a certain consensus was reached. Why am I bringing this up? Because in implementing Ukraineâs association project, our partners would come to us with their goods and services through the back gate, so to speak, and we did not agree to this, nobody asked us about this. We had discussions on all topics related to Ukraineâs association with the EU, persistent discussions, but I want to stress that this was done in an entirely civilised manner, indicating possible problems, showing the obvious reasoning and arguments. Nobody wanted to listen to us and nobody wanted to talk. They simply told us: this is none of your business, point, end of discussion. Instead of a comprehensive but â" I stress â" civilised dialogue, it all came down to a government overthrow; they plunged the country into chaos, into economic and social collapse, into a civil war with enormous casualties. Why? When I ask my colleagues why, they no longer have an answer; nobody says anything. Thatâs it. Everyoneâs at a loss, saying it just turned out that way. Those actions should not have been encouraged â" it wouldnât have worked. After all (I already spoke about this), former Ukrainian President Yanukovych signed everything, agreed with everything. Why do it? What was the point? What is this, a civilised way of solving problems? Apparently, those who constantly throw together new âcolour revolutionsâ consider themselves âbrilliant artistsâ and simply cannot stop. I am certain that the work of integrated associations, the cooperation of regional structures, should be built on a transparent, clear basis; the Eurasian Economic Unionâs formation process is a good example of such transparency. The states that are parties to this project informed their partners of their plans in advance, specifying the parameters of our association, the principles of its work, which fully correspond with the World Trade Organisation rules. I will add that we would also have welcomed the start of a concrete dialogue between the Eurasian and European Union. Incidentally, they have almost completely refused us this as well, and it is also unclear why â" what is so scary about it? And, of course, with such joint work, we would think that we need to engage in dialogue (I spoke about this many times and heard agreement from many of our western partners, at least in Europe) on the need to create a common space for economic and humanitarian cooperation stretching all the way from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean. Colleagues, Russia made its choice. Our priorities are further improving our democratic and open economy institutions, accelerated internal development, taking into account all the positive modern trends in the world, and consolidating society based on traditional values and patriotism. We have an integration-oriented, positive, peaceful agenda; we are working actively with our colleagues in the Eurasian Economic Union, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, BRICS and other partners. This agenda is aimed at developing ties between governments, not dissociating. We are not planning to cobble together any blocs or get involved in an exchange of blows. The allegations and statements that Russia is trying to establish some sort of empire, encroaching on the sovereignty of its neighbours, are groundless. Russia does not need any kind of special, exclusive place in the world â" I want to emphasise this. While respecting the interests of others, we simply want for our own interests to be taken into account and for our position to be respected. We are well aware that the world has entered an era of changes and global transformations, when we all need a particular degree of caution, the ability to avoid thoughtless steps. In the years after the Cold War, participants in global politics lost these qualities somewhat. Now, we need to remember them. Otherwise, hopes for a peaceful, stable development will be a dangerous illusion, while todayâs turmoil will simply serve as a prelude to the collapse of world order. Yes, of course, I have already said that building a more stable world order is a difficult task. We are talking about long and hard work. We were able to develop rules for interaction after World War II, and we were able to reach an agreement in Helsinki in the 1970s. Our common duty is to resolve this fundamental challenge at this new stage of development. Thank you very much for your attention.Why Do Banks Want Our Deposits? Hint: Itâs Not to Make Loans.
Many authorities have said it: banks do not lend their deposits. They create the money they lend on their books. Robert B. Anderson, Treasury Secretary under Eisenhower, said it in 1959: When a bank makes a loan, it simply adds…Is the CIA Running a Defamation Campaign Against Putin?
Russia Insider interviews The SakerThe latest hot topic in the Russian media. Russian politicians are talking about it. Historical precedent and behavior of Western media suggests that they are. A major topic in the Russian media is mystification with how Putin is portrayed in the Western media. Wildly popular at home, and seen as a decent, modest, an admirable person, and Russians don't understand how there can be such a disconnect with Western impressions. Recently, leading Russian commentators and politicians have been suggesting that this can only be explained by a deliberate campaign to defame Putin, by governments or other groups. Yesterday, at a briefing to foreign journalists, Sergey Ivanov, Putin's chief of staff, arguably the 2nd most powerful man in Russia, spoke of an "information war" consisting of "personal attacks" on Putin. The western media hit a new low... The day before another member of Putin's inner circle, Vyasheslav Volodin, made similar remarks, telling foreign journalists "an attack on Putin is an attack on Russia." The logic, they argue, is that by defaming the leader of a country, you weaken his power domestically by undermining popular support for him, and internationally, by rallying popular opinion to support policies against that country. The ultimate goal, they argue, is to weaken the country itself. They also talk about regime change. They argue that if one looks at the facts, that there is evidence of ongoing character assassination which cannot be explained by a vague popular zeitgeist in the West, but is more likely the result of a dedicated effort to introduce this defamation into the news flow. Newsweek has been one of the most virulent Putin-bashers for years The issue of manipulation of news by intelligence services has been in the news recently with revelations that the CIA and German Secret Service (GSS) have long-running programs to influence how media executives and top journalists convey and interpret the news, including direct cash payments. Here are some examples they point to: Portraying him as a scheming dictator trying to rebuild a repressive empire.Claiming he personally ordered the murder of a number of journalists, and personally ordered a KGB defector to be murdered with radiation poisoning.Frequently citing unsubstantiated rumors he is having an affair with a famous gymnast.Allegations that he has stashed away billions for his personal benefit, without providing evidence.Recent article in newsweek claiming he leads a luxurious and lazy lifestyle, sleeping late.Recent article in NYT focusing on a supposed personal arrogance.Hillary Clinton mentioning in speech after speech that he is a bad guy, a bully, that one must confront him forcefully.Frequently using pejoratives to describe his person - "a jerk and a thug" (Thomas Friedman this week in the NYT)Mis-quoting him on his regret about the collapse of the Soviet Union.Articles about a supposed super-luxury villa built for him in southern Russia.The over-the top headlines in the western media (they were worst of all in Germany) portraying him personally responsible for murdering the victims of MH17.And soft stuff - magazine covers making him look sinister, monstrous, etc. RI sat down with The Saker, a leading analyst of Russia in international affairs, and asked him what he thinks: ----------------------------------- So, is there any credence to this line of thinking, or is this conspiracy theorists running wild? There is no doubt in my mind whatsoever that the US is waging a major psyop war against Russia, although not a shooting war, for now, and that what we are seeing is a targeted campaign to discredit Putin and achieve "regime change" in Russia or, should that fail, at the very least "regime weakening" and "Russia weakening". And the Economist has been the very worst of them all... So this is a US government program? Yes, Putin is absolutely hated by certain factions in the US government two main reasons: 1. He partially, but not fully, restored Russia's sovereignty which under Gorbachev and Yeltsin had been totally lost â¦ Russia then was a US colony like Ukraine is today â¦ and, 2. He dared to openly defy the USA and its civilizational model. â¦ a free and sovereign Russia is perceived by the US "deep state" as an existential threat which has to be crushed. â¦ this is a full-scale political assault on Russia and Putin personally. So what the Russians are saying, that the constant personal attacks against Putin in the global media are partly the result of deliberate efforts by US intelligence services, â¦ basically, planted storiesâ¦ Yes, absolutely It seems like âOperation Mockingbirdâ all over againâ¦ Are you aware of other instances aimed at Putin? (Editors Note: Operation Mockingbird was a CIA program started in the 1950s to influence the US media, which was gradually exposed by investigative journalists starting in the late 60s, culminating in sensational televised congressional hearings in 1975 which shocked the nation, forcing the programâs termination. Critics maintain that the same tactics have continued since, under different programs. Wikipedia) Yes, of course. Since this defamation has very little traction with the Russian public â¦ Putin's popularity is higher than ever before .., there is an organized campaign to convince them that Putin is "selling out" Novorussia, that he is a puppet of oligarchs who are making deals with Ukrainian oligarchs to back-stab the Novorussian resistanceâ¦ â¦ So far, Putin's policies in the Ukraine have enjoyed very strong support from the Russian people who still oppose an overt military interventionâ¦ â¦ but if Kiev attacks Novorussia again - which appears very likely - and if such an attack is successful - which is less likely but always possible - then Putin will be blamed for having given the Ukrainians the time to regroup and reorganize. Warm and fuzzy... So you are saying that if the Ukrainian military strengthens its position enough to deliver a serious blow to the East Ukrainians, the US can use this as a method to strike at Putinâs support baseâ¦ Yes, thatâs right ... there are a lot of "fake patriots" in Russia and abroad who will reject any negotiated solution and who will present any compromise as a "betrayal". They are the "useful idiots" used by western special services to smear and undermine Putin. Is it limited to government special ops, or are there other groups who might have an interest in doing this? Yes, well here is something that most people in the west donât appreciateâ¦ there is a major behind-the scenes struggle among Russian elites between what I call the "Eurasian Sovereignists" (basically, those who support Putin) and what I call the "Atlantic Integrationists" (those whom Putin refers to as the "5th column). The western media talks about this as the struggle between Russian liberals and conservatives, reformers and reactionaries, right? Well its sort of like that, but not exactlyâ¦ The former see Russia's future in the Russian North and East and want to turn Russia towards Asia, Latin America and the rest of the world, while the latter want Russia to become part of the "North Atlantic" power configuration. The Atlantic Integrationists are now too weak to openly challenge Putin - whose real power base is his immense popular support - but they are quietly sabotaging his efforts to reform Russia while supporting anti-Putin campaigns. Regarding the revelations of CIA activities in Germany, do you think this is going on in other countries, in the US? I am sure that this is happening in most countries worldwide. The very nature of the modern corporate media is such that it makes journalists corrupt. As the French philosopher Alain Soral says "nowadays a reporter is either unemployed or a prostitute". There are, of course, a few exceptions, but by and large this is true. This is not to say that most journalists are on the take. In the West this is mostly done in a more subtle way - by making it clear which ideas do or do not pass the editorial control, by lavishly rewarding those journalists who 'get it' and by quietly turning away those who don't. If a journalist or reporter commits the crime of "crimethink" he or she will be sidelined and soon out of work. There is no real pluralism in the West where the boundaries of what can be said or not are very strictly fixed. Ok, but is it like what has been revealed in Germany, â¦similar specific operational programs in France, the UK, Italy, Latin America, etc. Yes, one has to assume so â" it is in their interests to have them and there is no reason for them not to. As for the CIA, it de-facto controls enough of the corporate media to "set the tone". As somebody who in the past used to read the Soviet press for a living, I can sincerely say that it was far more honest and more pluralistic than the press in the USA or EU today. Joseph Goebbels or Edward Bernays could not have imagined the degree of sophistication of modern propaganda machines. If the US is doing it, can't one assume other governments are too? Are the Russians doing it against western leaders? I think that all governments try to do that kind of stuff. However, what makes the US so unique it a combination of truly phenomenal arrogance and multi-billion dollar budgets. The US "deep state" owns the western corporate media which is by far the most powerful media on the planet. Most governments can only do that inside their own country ... to smear a political opponent or discredit a public figure, but they simply do not have the resources to mount an international strategic psyop campaign. This is something only the US can do. So foreign governments are at a great disadvantage in this arena vis-a-vis the US? Absolutely.=======Saker commentary: I want to add here a totally shameless plug for Russia Insider. Guys - keep an eye on what RI is doing. Not only has the editor and publisher, Charles Bausman, assembled a first-rate team of contributors (including several I consider as friends), but the format used by RI is an ideal complement to what I try to do here: whereas I tend to privilege long detailed analyses and a few shorter news items here and there, RI offers a steady stream of news items covering a very wide variety of related topics interspersed with always interesting opinion pieces. Frankly, I consider this very good and very needed stuff, and a very effective way to debunk the lies of the Empire's main stream media. Good guys, doing good things, in a good format. In other words - I consider checking the RI site at least once a day a "must".Kind regards to all,The SakerIgor Strelkov replies to Mikhail Khodorkovsky (UPDATED!)
Dear friends,Today I am submitting to your attention two interesting documents. A speech by "ex-oligarch and mobster now turned democratic activist" Mikhail Khodorkovsky and a reply to that speech by Igor Strelkov.Make no mistake, there is a war going on. True, it has not yet turned into a shooting war with armies on both sides unleashing their power, but this is a war nevertheless. This war opposes, on one hand, the 1% ruling elites of the AngloZionist Empire and their allies in Russia - we can call them the "5th column" or the "Atlantic Integrationists" - and on the other hand, the Russian "Eurasian Sovereignists" and their allies in the rest of the world, including the many supporters of a sovereign and independent Russia in the West. This war has many "fronts" including, of course, the one between in Novorussia and Banderastan, but there are many more. There is one in Syria, Iran and Iraq. There is another one right inside the EU. There is another front in Far East Asia, along the Taiwan Strait, and yet another one in Latin America. In the recent past, these fronts could also be found running across the Serbian Krajina in Croatia, the border between Israel and Lebanon and in Chechnia. In fact, this is the first truly a *planetary war* and there are "fronts" everywhere. Even the Muslim "umma" is deeply split between those who support (US backed) Saudi Wahabism and those who oppose it (lead by Iran). Right now, the most important one of these fronts runs across the Donbass, but this can change tomorrow.One of these fronts runs across the Russian society. Khodorkovsky is the iconic symbol and spokesman for the "Atlantic Integrationist" camp while Strelkov is the iconic symbol and spoksman for the "Eurasian Sovereignist" camp. Please read both of their manifestos and compare them - you will see that the differences between these two worldviews are not only deep, they are mutually irreconcilable.A big "thank you!!" to "A" who translated the Strelkov manifesto for this blog.I hope that you will enjoy this fascinating read.Kind regards,The Saker -------Mikhail KhodorkovskyKhodorkovskyâs Speech at the Freedom House Awards Dinner The following is the prepared text of the speech delivered by Mikhail Khodorkovsky at the 2014 Freedom House Awards Dinner on October 1. The text was originally posted here. The European choice, social justice and national mobilization 1. There is a legend about how nearly 200 years ago, the Russian political Ã©migrÃ©s of that time asked the Russian court historian Karamzin for the news about what was happening in the Motherland. Karamzin thought for a moment and then replied with a single word: âStealingâ. Little has changed in Russia since those times. Except maybe that the stealing has become even more sophisticated. Everything gets stolen in Russian, but the main thing â" and this is unique, I suppose â" is that in Russia even time gets stolen. 2. A little over 10 years ago I flew away from the USA to Russia, in order to strike out 10 years from my life and the life of my family. These ten years were taken away from me. In exchange I received some unique life experience that allowed me to rethink if not everything, then certainly a very large part of what I had been living by and what I had believed in the previous decade. But there is no way to bring back the time. 3. But the worst thing that I discovered when I got out of prison was that those ten years had been stolen not only from me, they had been stolen from the entire country. Time had struck the Putin decade out of Russiaâs life. Concealed behind a faÃ§ade of outward prosperity is the fact that the country has stopped its development. Not only that, in most areas it has been flung back far into the distant past: politically, economically, psychologically. The profusion of goods in the stores and the abundance of money in peopleâs pockets should not fool anybody. The regime can not take credit for this; it is a function of the oil market. 4. But that is not all. It turns out that the regime has robbed not only Russia, . It is trying to throw the whole world back into the era of the cold war (if not a hot one), when disputes are resolved at the point of a gun, while oneâs superiority is proven not by rates of economic growth, but by military aggression. Russia and the world have come to a very dangerous point, beyond which looms a Third World War.The return to Europe 5. A return to the European values that lie at the foundation of the Euro-Atlantic civilization, â" a mental and political return â" is the starting point for the new political course that could help Russia work its way out of the historical snare it is now in. Russia has just two ways it can go â" forward into the post-industrial era together with Europe, or back into the Middle Ages , and after that into outright non-existence. 6. All that my country has today, everything that it considers truly âits ownâ, everything that has allowed it to become a great power and that is now its âcalling cardâ: space exploration, the nuclear shield, literature and art, the high level of education and science (which even thirty years of âtimelessnessâ were incapable of destroying) â" was created within the scope of the European cultural tradition, in interaction with European culture and within the milieu of European culture. All of the deeds of spiritual valor of the Russian people, all of the innumerable sacrifices they have brought to the altar of their independence, were performed within the fold of the Christian tradition, which was and remains European in its nature. 7. A break with the West, with its values and its knowledge, is a dangerous step, one that leads to Russia losing its true cultural identity. The âEurasianismâ that is being actively forced upon society as the new totalitarian ideology is nothing more than a verbose justification for militant ignorance and barbarism. In order to preserve Russia as a single, independent, and sovereign state, it is imperative to return it to that path of development which it had followed in achieving its glory. 8. European values (or Euro-Atlantic, as it is now the common practice to call them) are first and foremost values of a strong and just state with effective institutions and laws that work. Russia needs these no less than any other people in the world do. Russia needs a law-based state and an open economy not because this will please Western Europe and America, but so it can work together with the Euro-Atlantic world â" and if necessary compete with it as well â" on equal terms. Peter the Great did not build the Russian army based on European models just to make the Swedes happy. 9. Whoever wants to be strong must not allow himself to fall behind. Russia can not and shut itself off from progress with some sort of Chinese Wall (in the literal and the figurative sense of this word). Anti-Western hysteria is a manifestation of psychological insecurity and fear of competition on the part of those fringe elements who are todayâs elite in Russia. Churchill once said that the reason there is no anti-semitism in England is because the English do not think they are any stupider than Jews. We have no reason to fear Europe, because we are no stupider than other Europeans. 10. To be together with Europe does not mean dissolving into Europe. Russia has both its own distinct cultural identity and its own particular national interests, which it has to know how to protect. Denying Russia a European choice under the pretext of protecting its national interests or using the European choice as an explanation for refusing to protect national interests are both equally unacceptable.A return to fairness 11. Modern Russian society is structured unfairly. Whoever has the biggest fist in it has bigger rights as well. In Russia today might is right, but it should be the other way around â" what is right has the might. Restoring the âbalance of fairnessâ is a top-priority task for all of the forces that have the transformation of Russia into a modern and dynamically developing state as their objective. If a solution is not found for this strategic task, society is not going to put its support behind any economic, social, or political reform. Paraphrasing Engels, we can say: all previous reforms in post-communist Russia led to an increase in social injustice; now the task consists of eliminating or at least reducing this injustice. 12. A return to social justice in Russia is impossible without repairing the damage caused by an unjust privatization. Privatization was a painful historical task without which Russiaâs further development would not have been possible. But the way it which it was accomplished led to the emergence of extremely severe social side effects. The point of the next stage of Russiaâs history will consist of eliminating these âdistortionsâ. Today, the power is de facto reconsidering the results of privatization in its own peculiar way, taking ownership out of the hands of some people merely to transfer it immediately into other, supposedly more âon our sideâ, hands. This is not what our people are waiting for. This is not going to lead anywhere except to even more stealing and corruption. 13. To begin with, restoring fairness will have to also address the question of subsoil use â" the main source of the Russian peopleâs wealth, and as of today its only one. At the given stage of historical development, we need to acknowledge the fairness of a simple formula â" the income from the exploitation of Russiaâs subsoil needs to belong to the people of Russia. The subsoil can be in the private ownership of those who extract this income for society â" specifically for society â" and who are efficiently managing operations and growing them. But it can not remain at the disposal of nomenklatura rentiers, who pay themselves disproportionate âsalariesâ and are incapable of working efficiently. 14. It is imperative to bring back fairness in income distribution as a whole as well, restoring proportional taxation rates. . We have got to create the image of the âresponsible taxpayerâ, with all of his obligations, but also, needless to say, with rights as well. Only someone who pays taxes has the right to ask the state â" what has it done for him with these taxes? A rentier-nation does not have such a right, and this is why the power is doing whatever it wants with the nation. 15. The vector of development of Russian liberalism, which is exclusively political today, needs to be rethought. Producing draft constitutions and plans for radical political and economic reforms is a futile exercise until society begins to feel that the liberal idea is a fair idea. 16. Society has enormous potential for self-organization when there is an idea around which a matrix can form. For Russia, such an idea can only be a socially oriented nation state. The only question is will this socially oriented nation state be liberal or fascist?War â" the ultimate unfairness 17. Fascism â" this is war. Russia is already making real war. those who send heroes to die not in the name of national interests, not to defend the Fatherland, but in order to keep in power a small group of plutocrats who are trying in this way to prolong the life of a regime that has already outlived itself. 18. War has become the sole driver of the moribund regime. It is happening in the Ukraine, but this war is not for Ukraineâs or Russiaâs sake, but for the sake of power. What got such a wildly enthusiastic reaction from the man in the street is going to bring innumerable trials and tribulations to the Russian people in the nearest foreseeable future already.National mobilization 19. The ruling regime is turning Russia into a Chinese protectorate. This is not even a question of the annexation of Siberia,. Today it would be enough just for Siberia to be completely locked in on China, which for all intents and purposes is going to be sucking resources out of it for free, like from a colony. 20. Russia has gotten stuck on a dangerous historical track, getting out of which is very complicated. In order to simply stop, and all the more so to switch to some other track, is going to require mobilization of all of the energies of the Russian people. The task of true Russian patriots is not in promising the Russian people smooth sailing but in telling the truth. Only if they understand the scale of the threat and of the historical significance of the moment can the people be moved to perform heroic deeds. And without heroic deeds, Russia today can not be saved. 21. The heroic deed of the Russian people must consist of constructive labor, of inculcating discipline and moderation, and of developing the ability to work together and to help one another â" in other words, of reviving all those moral skills that had helped Russian culture to develop and that have been lost to a large extent in recent years. In order to raise the people up to be able to perform this heroic deed, the pro-European minority needs to prove its moral soundness and its readiness to observe, not in word, but in deed, the principle of equality of all before the law. It is precisely this equality of all before a law that is the same for all, before an adversity that is the same for all, and for a common cause that is the same for all, that the true sense of liberalism consists of. If the people come to believe in this, then everything else will fall into place â" the reforms, economic progress, and prosperity for Russia. 22. Russia has been wasting time these past ten years; now is when we must begin to make up this lost time. Mikhail Khodorkovsky------- Igor StrelkovStrelkov's answer to Khodorkovsky Forword by Colonel Cassad: After a long silence Strelkov speaks with program criticism of Khodorkovsky's manifesto. Transition to public dispute where Strelkov opposes to vision of the fluent oligarch broadcasting from the USA, his vision of Russia's future, considerably defines Strelkov's vision of the country's future. In general, Strelkov's answer to Khodorkovsky, reflect his views that the Crimean Spring is the beginning of "revolution from above" which is carried out by Putin. PUTIN'S DECADE RETURNED TO RUSSIA HOPE FOR REVIVAL At the beginning of October in headquarters of the international human rights organization Freedom House in Washington, the former head of Yukos Mikhail Khodorkovsky made the speech convicting the Russian State and the President. The speech which formed the basis of the manifesto published afterwards. Having secured with support of global financial oligarchy, Khodorkovsky put forward some conceptual theses, using comparisons, analogy and association, familiar to the Russians, even sometimes copying methods of patriotic rhetoric. With enviable pathos and a claim for the status of an ultimate instance, the former oligarch tries to combine the incompatible. He "adds" liberal "values" alien to Russia and the Russian people to the concept of national pride and justice, close and native to the Russian heart, creating dangerous illusion of their organic compatibility. Khodorkovsky trying to accustoms active part of society to the future liberal transformations initiated by the world oligarchy and moreover â" declares them, as only possible and useful. Unfortunately, it is simply impossible to ignore this combination of "warm with soft" and leave it without answer . Too dangerous speeches were heard from lips of the obvious enemy of Russia and attempt of implementation of the scenarios offered by him can be way too destructive. We have to give the, Russian, patriotic answer to the globalistic, liberal scenario imposed by Khodorkovsky under the guise of a new round of "reforms". After all it is not simply leisure reasonings of the rich and uncommon criminal who ran away from the Fatherland, it is the ideological program of new revolution in Russia â" "road map" of the oligarchical revolt directed as always in the Russian history, against the Governor, the People and the Power. Well, we will sort out everything point by point. Russian choice, social justice and national mobilization 1. 100 years ago the last Russian Tsar-martyr Nicholas II wrote:" Around treason, cowardice and deception". He meant not the people at all, not "fools and roads", but the political, military and economic elite surrounding him during that period. Treason by elite ended up with the collapse of the greatest world power, the Russian Empire. 200 years ago the political elite under the leadership of the British envoy participated in regicide of the Emperor Pavel that led to Napoleon's invasion and 1812 Patriotic war subsequently. 400 years ago during the Time of Troubles, political elite of Russia swore to impostors and the Polish king, committed treason both to the Fatherland and Faith, while only revolt by the Russian militia saved both Russia and Orthodoxy during this period, having laid the foundation of a new Russian Tsars dynasty. Since then in Russia a little has changed. The Russian governors with a support on the Russian people bring their lifes on the Fatherland altar, and the fattened, corrupted comprador elites doesn't disdain in any ways to betray the Homeland, cowardly treason the Sovereign, to rob and subordinate the people for the sake of personal instant profit. Pacification always there came after long and painful years of a distemper â" Russia which left behind crisis and bloody wars started developing progressively again. The history repeated itself 23 years ago (before our eyes) again: the "red empire" which really needed serious and extremely careful reforming was plundered instead, stolen and destroyed by rack of "repainted" high-ranking party officials, sold to recent "ideological enemies" and adjoined them unscrupulous nouveau riches. The history been accelerated â¦ its rounds become shorter. And here again â" the second time on our short century â" the country which is hardly starting being restored after last "disorder" appears under the threat of a greedy scramble. Those to who were not allowed to plunder finally our distressful Homeland in the 90th, are eager for a revenge now. 2. 10 years of imprisonment for you, Mr. Khodorkovsky, is a real tragedy. After all, how much it would be possible to steal during this term! Your only task now is to make up for the lost time. Let's look past 10 years of your activity. Since 1991 before the arrest, you, Mr. Khodorkovsky, "from anything" ( without investing a ruble, but having appropriated for tens of billions of dollars of national property) created the huge financial and industrial empire, having become one of the richest people of the country. Thus, as well, as all oligarchs of that time, you generously "walked on corpses", didn't constrain yourself by any moral restrictions, plundered and ruined huge Soviet industrial heritage. Rolled in money and "elitism", without refusing to yourselves of anything. During the same years me and many of my friends and comrads were almost permanently at war for the Russian people and for Russia, against enemies of the Fatherland. At first in Transnistria, then in Bosnia, then in Chechnya. While we suffered a defeat after defeat because of treachery by so-called "new elite", receded, gritting the teeth, accompanied by contemptuous and full of hatred comments from so-called "democratic" mass media, you, Mr. Khodorkovsky and such likes didn't even remember needs of the country and its people. Therefore our experiences are essentially different. You learned to steal, plunder and lie and we â" to protect Russia and the people. Even when anybody didn't demand it from us. The prison always changes people, occasionally â" to the better. You, alas, didn't obtain due experience from that. After all, you didn't plead guilty absolutely to anything even after return to freedom. Moreover, you appeared immediately in the camp of enemies again, thus having confirmed that you was in prison for a good reason. 3. What are you talking about using word "stole" ? You, whose credo was "to steal, steal and steal"? Have you build or manufactured something in your life, that would be possible to steal personally from you? No. Because you weren't engaged in anything, except of theft, fraud and robbery, before the prison. From all your achievements, I am personally ready to recognize, as socially useful result only those "boots" which you "stitched" in prison. From the moral point of view, only this your work also is only worthy in all your, to put it mildly, rather dirty life of the highly professional thief and talented swindler. But worst of all that this work didn't do for you good at all and, judging by with whom you act nowadays, it didn't lead you to understanding of your own mistakes and crimes. When the real Patriots of Russia and the Russian people engaged in Novorossiya, you, having received pardon from the President Putin, immediately supported his enemies and enemies of Russia. You were on a Russophobic Maidan and gathered on the enemy territory all "color" of the Russian traitors on a forum to fight against the Russian Spring. You are saying that "Russia has ceased to grow"? It is direct result of your activity, your privatization, your comprador policy. Now your call is for cardinal reforms? With whom in alliance ?? With frank enemies of all Russian? Proceeding from patriotic motives? 4. Especially brightly your "patriotism", Mikhail Borisovich, is shown in repetition by you of a "horror movie" about Russia, as a "threat to Europe and the whole world". Once Goebbels, and long before him â" Napoleon and the British lords Palmerston and Disraeli loudly (and it is much more talented manner) shouted about this "threat". After them Winston Churchill did so and the U.S. President Ronald Reagan who, without a moment's hesitation called the USSR "Empire of evil". Thus, Mikhail Borisovich, you went on quite blazed way. It seems, with full confidence that only you are "the smartest" and something knew about the history, while all Russian people are full blockheads and ignoramuses. Well, cowards too who are easy for deceiving and intimidating by a ghost of "The third world war" that they easy agree to refuse the Fatherland and the help to their brothers perishing in Novorossiya in exchange for "would be no war at all cost". But the main addressee of this address is not in Russia at all. It is some kind of "oath" to those who during all history of Russia dreamed to liquidate it. In my opinion, this is typical shulersky reception at which the player operating with marked cards, understanding takes place that him just about will expose, immediately accuses partners of deception. The Western world headed by global financial oligarchy which integral part you, Mikhail Borisovich, endeavor to present us, â" being going to destroy or win neighbors, always and everywhere I started accusing future opponents, attributing it in accuracy own intentions. So it is possible to state: Russia really threatens with war. In hope that it will be frightened and capitulates, having allowed to disarm at first herself, and then finally to finish. What here to tell? The task of the real Russian patriots (but not frequenters Washington "Fried House") consists in preparing for reflection of aggression from the West because only in this case Russia will have an opportunity to prevent it and to defend the sovereignty. Return to Russia 5. Speaking about "the European values", you, Mr. Khodorkovsky, either don't understand or just pretend that you don't understand) that they have no relation to the real Values, traditional for Europe. They are revived today in Russia by the President Putin. And those "values" which are imposed by world financial oligarchy as "European", today are causing hundred thousand-strong protest actions in Europe. When last time, more than 20 years ago, the management of the USSR decided "to turn" to these so-called "values", the country was split, as a result, plundered and humiliated, and the Russian people suddenly appeared to be the largest divided nation in the world. From the moment of coming to power Putin started correcting catastrophe of the 90th: to subdue absolute power of oligarchy, to nationalize elite, to restore the destroyed economy. In process of establishment of an order the President found it possible to show mercy even to such a bastard, as you showed yourself to the world, Mr. Khodorkovsky, prior to the prison. But you didn't appreciated it. Probably, because you considered the favor rendered, as a manifestation of weakness. After all you, Mr. Khodorkovsky, of course, wouldn't bother yourself with such sentiment, isn't it? And now, having deceived the President by the false remorse, do you intend to take revenge for everything he did? That he relied on strengthening of the state and protection of national interests to the detriment of comprador elite? That he didn't allow to sell on cheap the largest stocks of natural resources to "Rotschilds", dooming Russia to the external management? That he punished you for openly stated intentions to discharge him from the power via unconstitutional way? From your words: being in prison, you "re-estimated a lot of things". But just having been released, you appeared on different sides of the front with the Russian people in war for the Russian World, in direct and rigid opposition on Donbass again. Your hatred to Putin brought you into a camp of enemies not only personally of the President, but into a camp of enemies of the Russian state and all Russian people. How can you dare to reproach Putin that he stood up to defense of the people of the Crimea and Novorossiya, didn't allow the Ukrainian nazis supported by the West to establish over the Crimea and Donbass a bloody dictatorship? After all Russians protecting themselves and their lifes. You accuse the victims that they allegedly have the nerve to defend themselves. The third world war is excluded while Russia is strong and rather powerful to guarantee, hence asymmetric, but strategic parity and while there are people in charge, who are not ready to trade off their country and the people for promises to be part of supranational financial elite. We will give worthy repulse to your persistent and not reclined during years of imprisonment, aspiration to sell something that doesn't belong to you. We also won't allow repeatedly just as was 23 years ago, to carry away ourselves through the false slogans. 6. Such things which you talking about, as "the European values and the euroatlantic civilization", not only has no relation to Russia, but directly contradicts our national history, psychology, destiny. Europe departed from its own Christian values long ago, having plunged into the abyss of the most vile defects, and eulogized "euroatlanticism" is no more than the geopolitical doctrine of USA global domination, directed against the people of the whole world still keeping own religion, the sovereignty and national traditions. Russia was twice affected already in recent times with leprosy of "the progressive European ideas" and was heavy injured by mad hobbies of its own elites and intellectuals,has two roads today : either to return to itself, anew to find the Faith, the tradition, the values, the sovereignty or be dissolved in the global West, get into slavery and to disappear as a civilization, having lost everything. I will emphasize again, what outstanding hypocrisy Mr. Khodorkovsky, you possess when you regret about lost art, literature, science, space and other achievements of imperial and Soviet "totalitarian past". Truly, "the wolf feel sorry for a horse â" left tail and mane"! But even if we assume that something told by you is remotely true, I ask you to learn history a little: Russia received Christian Faith not from the Catholic West, but from the orthodox East â" directly from East Roman Empire Byzantium, which remained the keeper of true Christianity throughout the whole millennium . However, how can you argue about Christian Faith? 7. Everything that Russia has today, was created by our people and our state in desperate fight for preservation of own originality, freedom and sovereignty. In fight against enemies both from the West, and from the East. Russia developed at first as the national state which grew to the great Empire because it was rather flexible in ability to perceive positive experience of neighbors. Nothing in it neither shameful nor superhonourable â" because it is a way of all nations having the sane rulers, which are building and developing own state. Borrow doesn't mean to copy blindly. Enough is enough â¦ to copy [to that extend]. Only Marxism imported exactly from Europe - what's a cost to the country! Every nation and very state is unique. As any grass field beautiful by different grasses and a scattering of various flowers, thus Mankind is beautiful in an inflorescence of the unique people, wrestling among themselves for "better place under the sun", but not reminding that "flat public lawn" into which "the euroatlantic universal men". 8. The euroatlantic values are "values of the strong and fair state"? Well done, Mikhail Borisovich! Now these values lead this greatest Europe, about which our home brew liberals so like to speak, to extinction of those people of Europe which follow them and which once created it. Is your so-called "justice" consists in it? However, you, for obvious reasons, don't care about historical destinies of any those Germans, French or Britons. As well as Russians, Bashkir, Tatars, Lezgians and so on. And "the strong state", so to think, means the USA? After all, no "strong" (that is rather sovereign and independent) states left over in Europe. The last sovereign state in Europe outside the former USSR which dared to defend interests of its citizens was Yugoslavia, has been crushed and subordinated 15 years ago. It was inclined to "the euroatlantic choice" by bombs and rockets, blockade and alien's mutiny. Now its turn of Belarus and Russia, isn't it? The Base in Ukraine was already created and the last breakthrough remains? The values spread by world financial oligarchy ("European", "euroatlantic", "universal", etc.) â" these are values of the national states elimination and radical cancellation of anything that bears a faint resemblance of social justice. Here, Mr. Khodorkovsky, you are either ignorant or conscious liar. Well about "ignorance" I'm saying "for the sake of a witty remark", as I have no illusions concerning defects in your education. Liberalism which you defend, has as the ultimate goal total globalization, leveling of all people and religious communities under one consumer "comb" and the statement of the power of world financial oligarchy in process of abolition of all historically developed states (the project of the European Union â" the first step in this direction). In the sphere of economic policy liberalism not only in practice, but in the theory rigidly denies social justice. Freedom of the market about which liberals go on, is incompatible with redistribution of profit as supporters of social justice insist. More Russia will be involved in globalization processes, the quicker will lose the sovereignty and opportunity to pursue social policy. Now on "mobilization". We, of course, need powerful national mobilization against aggression of the "evroatlantist" aimed at the accelerated and final plunder of Russia under the pretext of "integration into the world community" and "global economy". Mobilization both state and public. Because threat hung not only over the state sovereignty of Russia, but over cultural and moral identity of its people decomposed strenuously by propagandized and introduced "euroatlantic" defective â" sodomy debauchery, pedophilia, murder of children and old men (abortions and euthanasia), drug addiction, terrorism, etc. brought by a "new humane world order". 9. "The one who wants to be strong, can't afford to be backward". This is absolutely correct thesis. For this reason the decision by the President Putin on full modernization of army by 2020 is absolutely adequate answer to Russophobic hysteria from the West. The Russian military, heads of defense industry complex, regional industrialists and businessmen have to replace by themselves comprador elite of 90th, the so-called "oligarchs", typical representative of whom you are, Mr. Khodorkovsky. Oligarchs are alien to Russia, their capitals and families are in the West though they made their capitals by exploiting the Russian people. They represent interests of global financial oligarchy, think in categories of ultra-liberalism and, in fact, consider themselves something like colonial administration. Therefore prefer to speak out their "revelations" by your "prophetical" lips from Washington DC. 10. Today is not Europe that matters, but Russia. Our way is a return to itself. It is necessary to return to Russia, to our history, to our culture, to our mission. This mission always was and remains in bearing Christ's light of belief, ideals of good and social justice to people of the world, to be "keepers" against the evil, as the Apostle Pavel told. We had very heavy past. Russia was shook all 20th century in fevers of bloody revolutions and destructive wars. But thanks to the passed heavy tests, Russia managed to save a lot of things which Europe lost almost irrevocably. If Europe wishes to return to own traditions and the Christian principles, its on the way with us, but not with the financial oligarchy of the USA bearing to people of the world a godless civilization of moral decay, ideological zombiing, spiritual and physical death. Creation of fair society 11. "Modern Russian society is arranged unfairly", you are sayng. I completely agree with that. But I will repeat written above, it was made by you and such likes. Having used crisis of the USSR, you began to plunder and kill, appropriating national property. So you and your accomplices laid the foundation of "modern Russian society" where the most cynical and mean [social] layer, working on arrangement and instructions of transatlantic curators, got all levers of economic and partly the political power. Right after coming to power Putin started correcting the situation, but the injustice, which became in the 90th the principle, has a deep root. Therefore return to our society of social justice will be long and difficult process. But I believe that we will cope with it without councils of the fluent ex-oligarch who made a fortune plundering the national wealth, created by a hard work of generations of the Russian people. 12. While reading your criticism of privatization (by the way, quite reasonable), I was surprised by your cynicism: You and such likes, acquired the capitals during this criminal capture of public property, and now trying to accuse anyone, only not those who is actually guilty. Privatization, for what it was, is not a "distortion", but crime. As a result of it, the property was received not by ordinary people, but quick and unscrupulous minority. And largest "pieces" of property were acquired with direct support of the foreign financial capital going literally "on corpses". Who knows this better than you? Putin started establishing the correct proportions, giving to the state the most important strategic spheres of economy. Thereby he just tries to correct catastrophic consequences of criminal privatization. Without eradication of the oligarchy established just on criminal privatization there will be neither social justice, nor full development of private business. 13. Saying that natural resources has to belong to the people, you are completely right herein. I already said that sometimes (though it is rare) the prison corrects well. In this point, the shift is undoubtedly positive. This is exactly whats happened to you: assets of your energy companies, criminally created, were transferred under management of the state, thus its people. How otherwise is possible to make natural resources a national property if not through their nationalization and redistribution of provit, in favor of all citizens? It excludes a private ownership of large objects in hydrocarbon extraction. History of Yukos is an example of how natural resources comes back to the people. Efficiency of its use is another question.To start with, they should be taken away from you and such likes, then it should be used most effectively. It is hard to argue with that fact that use of a resource rent is far from ideal. The main thing is not to leave anything of natural resources in a private possession of oligarchy. 14. Proportional tax scale is absolutely correct way. It is also the movement towards social justice. But only not for you, Mr. Khodorkovsky, grown rich on a robbery of the people and taken fortune abroad, to argue on it. In what country did you pay taxes? In Switzerland, in England, in the USA? Why dob't you return to the people stolen, begin with yourself, pay taxes in Russia. Or for this purpose you should become a president at first? One similar oligarch quite recently assured electorate of the neighboring country in the same oath. His name is Petro Poroshenko. He swore give to the people of Ukraine everything sewed by his back-breaking toil ! But he isn't in a hurry. So begin with yourself! Show to the world an image of "the responsible taxpayer"! Then, perhaps, somebody (strongly naive) will also believe you. 15. Liberalism as you understand it, Mr. Khodorkovsky, is absolute delusion. This flase doctrine which is completely ignoring God, spirit, culture, mankind, society and regarding an individual, his material private interests and the sphere of finance, as of paramount importance. Liberalism, understood in such manner, is absolutely incompatible with original freedom: how can be a person free, if society in which he lives, is a slavery of interest rate, a debt bondage of the international financial oligarchy and its local supervisors? If all human life is subordinated to search and enhancement of material benefits and the bank account statement is a criterion only? Today liberalism is totalitarian ideology on which distribution the USA build the world hegemony. It is unacceptable for Russia in no shape or form â" neither in political, nor in economic, in legal. This is most important: for you, Mr. Khodorkovsky, liberalism is the ultimate truth and national development and social justice is good for populism. But in Russia liberalism is doomed, it is acceptable neither by right, nor left. It is the colonial ideology going against our Russian identity. Trying to destroy this identity for the sake of a celebration of liberal ideology you are destroying Russia too. I thought, it is your ultimate goal. 16. Socially oriented, based on Christian values state is the purpose, a reference point and strategy of the real Russian patriots. In achievement of this purpose "right" and "left", supporters of a monarchy and socialism can unite absolutely freely. And of course, such state has to be based on a firm observance of precepts of law. But what is your relations to this? After all, you need to tempt the people and they are now inclined to listen to slogans of creation "the socially oriented national state" (without understanding how to build the "national" state on a place of the centuries-old Russian Empire in which hundreds of nations lived peacefully and developed). You throw this bone to us, the Russian people. But Russians are not any longer the trustful herd, which for the past century twice "pecked" on promises of "milk and honey" and as a result spilled oceans of the blood. Sincerely I hope that we learned something and we will manage to distinguish truth from the fake wrapped in a beautiful wrapper. The socially oriented national state is anything, but you, oligarchs, footmen of Rotschilds. Leave it, Mr. Khodorkovsky, national and social issues: these concepts demands clean hands and the faultless biography. War is the tragedy which sometimes impossible to avoid 17. The USA and the American hegemony is a war. We see it in Libya, in Syria, in Iraq, and Afghanistan, in Ukraine. Everywhere, USA helps to carry out "color revolutions", fascists, extremists, fundamentalists come to the power. To be the supporter of the USA, the West and NATO â" means to be the fascist helper, the lawyer of war. This war is waged against the whole Mankind, which is not interested to live by the American rules and to serve obediently and servilely interests of world financial oligarchy. 18. This war is waged against Russia, against Ukraine. Those heroes who get up in defense of the Russian World who fights in Novorossiya, didn't want this war. They wanted the peace. But peace can't be at the price of freedom and dignity. In the conditions of the neo-Nazi junta brought to power in Kiev by your masters, Mr. Khodorkovsky and supported by you personally, life is not a life, but peace is not the peace. Russians in both, Crimea and Novorossiya get up for freedom and justice, for the rights of national development, for the language and culture. It was war against war. Your appeals to peace isn't simple hypocrisy, this is treachery. However, as all the rest is. We are simply on different sides of the frontline, and your words for me who took active part in military operations in Novorossiya sound like appeals from other side: "Russian, give up! There will be a peace! You were deceived!" In reply to such call during combat conditions there is one answer. Guess, what? Problem of Russia today is not that a war is (as you say) allegedly "driver". On the contrary, Putin did everything possible and does everything possible to avoid "big" war (the small one USA is already launched by the hands of Kiev and goes on, claiming human lives daily). To reproach the authorities of Russia that she doesn't leave the Russian World to the mercy of fate, blasphemously. Defending this thesis, you find support of the westernized comprador elite which is regularly gathering for anti-Russians "Marches for the peace". However, you should say goodbye forever to those who stood on the side of historical Russia and social justice and this is a vast majority of people. You are on other side of Crimea and Novorossiya, which now, more than ever, rally the Russians, supporting unconditionally decisive steps of Putin in this direction. National mobilization 19. Acting authorities brought Russia to the threshold of decisive breakthrough towards independence, power and freedom which is capable to bring her out from zone of direct influence by the American hegemony. Unfortunately, at my private judgment, the specified breakthrough obviously it is slow down (suspected, by your secret and obvious adherents who still have huge influence, thanks to the stolen riches and high internal political influence, bought with that). Hesitations regarding the need to move forward are visible also. But people of the country are quite ready to it and it frightens you. The hysterics concerning threat of "the Chinese protectorate" also occurs from here. "The Chinese threat" is in the theory, so far. But open protectorate of the USA established over Russia as a result of Gorbachev and Yeltsin treason is a fact of life. The main threat to the sovereignty of Russia is an aggressive impact of the world financial oligarchy frightened by possibility of losing Russia from a slop trough of "colonial economy". And in its fifth column, where you are one of ideologists. 20. The world financial oligarchy desperately and frenzy struggles against revival of Russia. If Russia withstands, it has a future; she will return to history and will win. But if the sales agent of world financial oligarchy hating all Russian (such as you), comes to the power in Russia, we will fail in a chasm in comparison with gangster era of 90th would seem as a children's game . Disintegration of the country with all that implies in the form of wars, general poverty, hunger, epidemics and large-scale technogenic catastrophes, here that waits for us in this box. How it happens, so far on much smaller scale, I had to observe personally more than once and not two. Quite recently â" in Ukraine, where "cherries" are still ahead. After all, Mr. Khodorkovsky, you want to help the West to destroy again that Putin in the 2000th started restoring. But you won't be able to manage it because we are Russians, God is with us! World financial oligarchy, priests of Mammon, having put itself to the place of God and on its own behalf operating destinies of the world, overplayed itself. The American hegemony falls, as a colossus on clay feet. The West falls: its indigenous people dies out; European countries in 20 years will become Muslim; the Christian culture is tired out on the periphery of public life; China officially became the largest economy of the world; The USA aren't able to pay its huge national debt; they are shaken by disorders on the racial and social soil, in an agony the West sows on the world only chaos and destructions, blood and sufferings. We have to go in other direction, towards revival of Great Russia against all threats and calls. The enormous turn is already made in this regard- Putin assembled Crimea back to Russia and nobody will be able to take it away from us! 21. You started talking about the Russian exploits, but reduced it to moderation and labor. Probably, you believe that future happiness of the Russian people is in a slave labor for a skilly bowl for the benefit of world financial oligarchy which you represent. And for the low-standard "shows" offered in addition to a skilly, which guarantee returning the person to a condition of the an animal, following the simplest instincts. Well, then "only over our dead bodies"! The Russian people have absolutely other horizons and the purposes, than dumb submission to the corrupted western elites. Here I will distract from your theses and I will briefly formulate our Russian answer which is expressed by a simple formula "For Faith, the Tsar and Fatherland". For these sacred concepts the Russian people from time immemorial went to die, perfectly understanding that battling for them is a battle for themselves and for the future. Today it means quite concrete loyalty: to the Russian Orthodox Church, to the Russian state and Supreme Commander V. V. Putin. 22. Last fifteen years Russia prepared itself for breakthrough in the great Russian future. Now its time to make it. Igor Strelkov -------UPDATE: please find below an edited and corrected version of the Strelkov manifesto (thanks to K.H. for his work!!)PUTIN'S DECADE RETURNED TO RUSSIA HOPE FOR REVIVAL In early October, at the Washington headquarters of the international human rights organization, Freedom House, the former head of Yukos, Mikhail Khodorkovsky, delivered a speech, that indicted the Russian State and the President. The speech which would later form the basis of a manifesto, as espoused by Khodorkovsky was later published. Having gained the support of the global financial elites, the oligarchs, Khodorkovsky put forward his thesis using analogies, associations and even patriotic rhetoric, all quite familiar to the Russian people. With enviable pathos the former oligarch attempted to conflate the incompatible. He sought to associate âliberal values,â a concept alien to Russia and the Russian people, and the concept of national pride and justice, which speaks to the heart of the Russian people. In doing this he created a dangerous illusion of their organic compatibility. Khodorkovsky attempted to acclimate Russian society to a proposed future liberal transformation initiated by the worldâs financial elites, who he deemed both necessary and useful. Unfortunately, it is impossible to ignore this unlikely combination of âhot and coldâ and leave it unanswered. Two dangerous speeches were given by an all too obvious enemy of Russia, as any attempt to implement the scenarios offered by him would be far too destructive. It is necessary to give a rebuttal, a patriotic Russian response, to the globalistâs liberal agenda as outlined by Khodorkovsky, which he dresses in sheepâs clothing. These are not merely the leisurely ramblings of a rich, convicted criminal, who fled from the Fatherland, it is the ideological underpinnings of a new revolution to be waged against Russiaâ" a âroad mapâ for an oligarchic revolt, which is a constant in Russian history.Well, we will sort out everything point by point.Russian choice, social justice and national mobilization 1. One hundred years ago the last Russian Tsar, martyr Nicholas II wrote âAround treason, cowardice and deception.â He was not referring to the people, not âfools and roads,â but instead the political, military and economic elite, that surrounded him during that period.Treason by the elites led to the collapse of the greatest world power, the Russian Empire, during this time. Two hundred years ago the political elite under the leadership of the British envoy participated in the regicide of the Emperor Pavel, which led to Napoleon Bonaparteâs invasion and then subsequently to the 1812 Patriotic War. Four hundred year ago during the Time of Troubles, the political elite of Russia swore an oath to impostors and the Polish King and committed treason to the Fatherland and Faith. Only a revolt by the Russian militia saved Russia and religious orthodoxy during this period, which laid the foundation for a new dynasty of Russian Tsars. Since that time, little has changed in Russia. The Russian governors with support of the Russian people have given their lives at the altar of the Fatherland, while the fattened, corrupted financial elites looks for every opportunity to cowardly betray, foment treason, while robbing and subordinating the Russian people for the sake of personal profit. After long and painful years of distemper, there would be pacification. Russia would once again move forward, embracing progress and leaving behind crises and bloody wars. The twenty-three years ago (before our eyes) the âred empire,â which desperately sought serious and much needed reform was, instead, plundered and destroyed by traitorous high-ranking party officials, who were joined by nouveau rich opportunists. For the second time in the past 100 years, as the traitorous cycles become shorter and shorter, a new threat appears, brought by those who during the 1990s were not allow to fully plunder the Russian State and, it appears, that they are eager for revenge.2. Mr. Khodorkovskyâs your ten years of imprisonment was a real tragedy. How much you are able to steal this time, as you seek to make up for lost time is anyoneâs guess. Letâs look back at the past ten years of your activity. In 1991 before your arrest, you, Mr. Khodorkovsky, (without investing a single ruble appropriated tens of billions of dollars of state property) created a huge financial and industrial empire and became one of the richest people in the country. You, like all the oligarchs of that time âwalked on corpses,â plundered and ruined Soviet industrial heritage free of moral restrictions. You rolled in money and elitism, refusing yourself nothing at all. During this same time my friends, comrades and I were almost permanently at war for the Russian people and for Russia against enemies of the Fatherland. At first we fought in Transnistria, the in Bosnia and the in Chechnya. We suffered defeat after defeat, because of the treachery of the so-called ânew elite and from the contemptuous and hate-filled lies of the so-called âdemocraticâ mass media. You, Mr. Khodorkovsky, and those like you didnât care for the needs of the country or its people. Therefore our experiences are quite different. You learned to steal, plunder and lie, while we fought to protect Russia and the Russian people, when on one even demanded it of us. Prison always changes people and occasionally, for the better. You, alas, didnât have that positive experience. After all, you didnât please absolute guilt to anything, even after your release. Moreover, you appeared immediately in the camp of our enemies, which has confirmed, that you were in prison for a good reason.3. What do you mean when you use the word âstole?â You, whose credo it was âto steal, steal and steal!â Have you built or manufactured something in your life, that it would be possible to steal from you? No. Because you were not engaged in anything other than theft, fraud and robbery before you landed in prison. From all of your achievements, I am personally ready to recognize one as socially useful and those are the âboots,â that you âstitchedâ while in prison. From a moral point of view, only is this work performed by you is worthy, as opposed to your dirty life as a professional thief and talented swindler. But worst, judging with whom you now associate, youâve learned nothing from your mistakes and your crimes. While the real Patriots of Russia and the Russian People are engaged in Novorossiya, you, having received a pardon from President Putin, immediately give support to his enemies and the enemies of Russia. You are on a Russophobic Maidan and have gathered together, on enemy territory, all the traitors in a forum to fight against the Russian Spring. You say that Russia has ceased to grow? It is a direct result of your activity, your privatization, your financial policies. Now you call for cardinal reforms in an alliance with enemies of Russia? And you consider this patriotic motives?4. Especially bright is your âpatriotismâ Mikhail Borisovich, as shown by your âhorror movieâ repetition of Russia as a âthreat to Europe and the whole world.â Once Goebbels, and long before him Napoleon, the British Lords Palmerston and Disraeli loudly (and in a much more talented manner) shouted about this âRussian threat.â After them Winston Churchill and Ronald Reagan, who without a momentâs hesitation called the USSR, âThe Evil Empire.â Thus, Mikhail Borisovich, you went on and fired away, as though with full confidence, that you were âsmarterâ and more learned about history, while all Russians were full blockheads and ignoramuses. Well, cowards are easy to deceive and intimidate with the ghost threat of a âThird World War,â who then refuse to help the Fatherland and their brothers perishing in Novorossiya. The main addressee of this response is not in Russia at all. It is some kind of âoathâ undertaken by those, who during all of Russiaâs history dreamed to have it liquidated? In my opinion, this is typical shulersky reception, at which the player operating the marked cards, hands the marked cards to a partner and then immediately accuses the partner of deception. The Western world headed b the global financial elite, oligarchs, which you are an integral part of, Mikhail Borisovich, endeavor to present us as about to destroy or win neighbors everywhere and always. So, is it Russia that really threatens war, in hopes that it will be frightened and that it will then capitulate, after first disarming? The task of the real Russian patriot (but not frequenters of Washingtonâs âFried Houseâ) consists of being prepared for aggression from the West, because only Russia has the ability to prevent war and defend its sovereignty. Return to Russia 5. Speaking about âEuropean Values,â you, Mr. Khodorkovsky, either didnât understand or just pretended that you didnât understand, that they have no relation to the real values, traditional for Europe. They are revived today in Russia by President Putin. And those âEuropean Values,â that are imposed by the world financial oligarchy are today causing hundred thousand-strong protest actions across Europe. The last time, now more than twenty years ago, the management of the USSR decided to âadoptâ these so-called âvalues,â the country was plundered, humiliated and the Russian People suddenly appeared to be the largest divided nation in the world. From the moment Putin came to power, he immediately started correcting the catastrophe of the â90s and he began to subdue the absolute power of the oligarchy, by nationalizing industries and restoring what was a destroyed economy. In the process of establishing order President Putin found it possible to even show, such a bastard as you, mercy and you didnât appreciate it. Probably because you considered his treatment of you a manifestation of weakness. After all you, Mr. Khodorkovsky, couldnât bother yourself with such sentiment. And now having deceived the President by false remorse, you intend to take your revenge? Why? Because he relied on strengthening of the state and protection of national interests to the detriment of the financial elites? Because he didnât allow the sale of the countries natural resources for pennies to the âRothchilds,â dooming Russia to external management? Because he punished you for openly stating you intentions to discharge him from power in an unconstitutional way? From your words, with regard to being in prison, you âre-estimated a lot of things.â But just having been released, you now appear on a different side of the front, in direct and rigid opposition to the Donbass struggle and against the Russian State and the Russian People. How can you dare reproach Putin, when he stood up to defend the people of the Crimea and Novorossiya against the Ukrainian nazis supported by the West, who sought to impose a bloody dictatorship. You accuse the victims, who have actually summoned the courage to defend themselves. The third world war is entirely avoidable, while Russia remains strong and powerful enough to guarantee strategic parity, as long as there are people in charge, who are not ready to trade away their country and their people for promises from the global financial elite. We will repulse your efforts to sell that which does not belong to you. We will also not allow a repeat of what happened twenty-three years ago and allow ourselves to be carried away by false slogans. 6. The things that you speak of such as âEuropean Valuesâ and âEuroatlantic Civilizationâ have no relation to Russia and directly contradicts our national history, psychology and destiny. Europe departed from its own Christian values long ago, having plunged into the abyss of the most vile defects, while eulogizing âEuroatlanticism,â which is little more than the geopolitical doctrine of the global dominations by the USA directed against the people of the world, who still keep hold of their religious values, sovereignty and national traditions. Russia was twice affected recently with the leprosy of âprogressive European idealâ and was heavily injured by mad hobbies of its own elite and intellectuals. Today Russia has two roads: either return to itself anew and find the faith, the tradition, the values, its sovereignty or be dissolved into the West as its slave and disappear as a civilization, having lost everything. I will emphasize again, what outstanding hypocrisy Mr. Khodorkovsky, you posses when you regret lost art, literature, science, space and other achievements of imperial and Soviet âtotalitarian past.â Truly, âthe wolf feels sorry for a horseâ"left tail and mane.â But even if we assume that something said by you is remotely true, I ask you to lear a little history: Russia received the Christian Faith not from the Catholic West, but from the Orthodox Eastâ" directly from the East Roman Empire Byzantium, which remained the keeper of true Christianity throughout the entire millennium. However, how can you argue about the Christian Faith?7.Everything that Russia has today was created by our people and our state in a desperate fight for preservation of our own originality, freedom and sovereignty. In the fight against enemies from the West and from the East. Russia developed first as the nation state, which grew to the great Empire because it was rather flexible in its ability to understand positive relationships with its neighbors. Nothing in it either shameful or superhonourable â" because it was the way of all nations, that had sane ruler, which were building and developing their own state. Borrow doesnât mean to copy blindly. Enough is enough. To copy [to that extent]. Marxism imported exactly from Europe, but what a cost to the country! Every nation and every state is unique. As is the unique beauty of any grass field, made up of different grasses and a scattering of flowers. Thus mankind is beautiful in an inflorescence of the unique people, wrestling among themselves for a âbetter place under the sunâ and not that âflat public lawnâ of the ?Euroatlantic.â8. Are the Euroatlantic values the âvalues of the strong and fair state?â Well done, Mikhail Borisovich! Now these values, about which our home brew liberals so like to speak, have lead this greatest Europeâs people to extinction or, at least, those who follow them. Does your so-called âjusticeâ exist there? However, for obvious reasons, you donât care about the historical destinies of any Germans, French, Britons. As well as Russians, Bashkir, Tatars, Lezgians and so on. And the âstrong stateâ means the USA? After all, there is no âstrongâ (that is rather sovereign and independent) states left in Europe. The last sovereign state in Europe outside of the former USSR, which dared to defend the interests of its citizens was Yugoslavia, which was crushed and subordinated fifteen years ago. It was inclined to the âEuroatlantic Choiceâ by bombs and rockets, a blockade and an internal alien mutiny. Now itâs Belarus and Russiaâs turn isnât it? The base in Ukraine has already been created and the last breakthrough remains? The values spread by world financial oligarchy (âEuropean,â âEuroatlantic,â âUniversal,â etc.) these are the values of the elimination and radical cancellation of nation states, that show any signs of social justice [or national sovereignty]. Here Mr. Khodorkovsky, you are either ignorant or a conscious liar. Well, about âignoranceâ Iâm saying âfor the sake of a witty remark,â as I have no illusions concerning the defects of your education. Liberalism, which you defend, has as its ultimate goal total globalization and the leveling of all peoples and religious communities under one consumer thumb. And the global financial oligarchy is in the process of abolishing all historically developed states (the project of the European Unionâ" the first step in this direction). Freedom of the market about which liberals go on, is incompatible with the redistribution of profit as supporters of social justice insists. The more Russia becomes involved in the globalization processes, the sooner Russia will lose the sovereignty and opportunity to pursue social policy. Now on âmobilization,â we, of course, need powerful national mobilization against the aggression of the âEuroatlantists,â which is aimed at the accelerated and final plunder of Russia under the pretext of âintegration into the world communityâ and âglobal economy.â Mobilization both state and public should be undertaken. The threat hangs not only over the state sovereignty of Russia, but over the cultural and moral identity of its people, who are strenuously attacked by propagandaâ"sodomy, debauchery, pedophillia, murder of children and old men (abortions and euthanasia) drug addiction, terrorism, etc., as introduced by âEuroatlantistsâ as a ânew humane world order.â9. âThe one who wants to be strong canât afford to be backward.â This is an absolutely correct thesis. For this reason the decision by President Putin on full modernization of the army by 2020 is absolutely adequate to answer the Russophobic hysteria from the West. The Russian military, heads of the defense industry complex, regional industrialist and businessmen have to replace by themselves the financial elite of the â90s, the so-called âoligarchs,â who are typical representatives of who you are, Mr. Khodorkovsky. Oligarchs are alien [expatriates] to Russia, their capitals and families are in the West though they made their capital by exploiting the Russian people. They represent the interest of the global financial oligarchy, think in terms of ultra-liberalism and, in fact, consider themselves something like a colonial administration. Therefore they prefer to present their ârevelationsâ by your âpropheticalâ lips from Washington DC.10. Today it is not Europe that matters, but Russia. Our way is a return to self. it is necessary to return to Russia, to our history, to our culture, to our mission. This mission always was and remains in bearing Christâs light of belief, ideals of good and social justice to people of the world and to be âkeepersâ against the evil, as the Apostle Pavel told. We have had a very difficult past. Russia was shook during the 20th century in fevers of bloody revolutions and destructive wars, but we are thankful to have passed these difficult tests. Russia managed to save a lot of things which Europe has lost almost irrevocably. If Europe wishes to return to its own traditions and the Christian principles, it will find that way with us and not with the financial oligarchy of the USA bringing to the people of the world a godless civilization of moral decay, ideological zombism, spiritual and physical death.Creation of fair society 11. âModern Russian society is arranged unfairly,â you say. I completely agree with that. But I will repeat what Iâve stated above, it was made that way by the likes of you. Having used the crisis of the USSR, you began to plunder, national property, and kill. So you and your accomplices laid the foundation for âModern Russian societyâ where the most cynical and mean [social] layer, working under the direction of the transatlantic curators, got all levers of economic power, with partial political power. Right after coming to power President Putin started correcting the situation, but the injustice of the â90s has deep roots. Therefor the return to our society of social justice will be a long and difficult process. I believe that we will cope with it without council from the fluent ex-oligarch, who made a fortune plundering the national wealth, which was created by the hard work of the Russian People.12. Reading your criticism of privatization (by the way, quite reasonable), i was surprised by your cynicism: You and your like, acquired the capital during this criminal capture of public property and are now trying to accuse anyone other than those who are actually guilty. Privatization, for what it is, was not a âdistortionâ but a crime. As a result, the property was received not by ordinary people, but a quick and unscrupulous minority. And the largest âpiecesâ of the property were acquired with the direct support of foreign financial capital walking literally âon corpses.â Who knows this better than you? Putin started establishing the correct proportions, giving to the state the most important strategic spheres of the economy. Thereby he tried to correct the catastrophic consequences of criminal privatization. Without the eradication of the oligarchy, established on criminal privatization, there will neither be social justice nor full development of private business.13. Saying that natural resources have to belong to the people, you are completely right. I have already said that sometimes (though it is rare) the prison corrects well. In this point, the shift is undoubtedly positive. This is exactly what happened to you: asses of your energy companies, criminally created, were transferred to the state, for management, and its people. How otherwise is it possible to make natural resources a national priority, if not through their nationalization and the redistribution of profit to all citizens? It excludes a private ownership of large projects in hydrocarbon extraction. The history of Yukos is an example of how natural resources come back to the people. Efficiency of its use is another question. To start, natural resources should be taken away from you and all like you, then it should be used most efficiently. It is hard to argue with the fact that use of a resource is far from ideal. The main thing is not to leave any natural resources in possession of private oligarchs. 14. Proportional tax scale is absolutely correct. It is also a movement towards social justice. But only not for you, Mr. Khodorkovsky, who has grown rich on robbing the people and have taken you fortune abroad, to argue on it. In what country did you last pay taxes? In Switzerland, England, the USA? Why donât you return the peopleâs money and begin with yourself, by paying taxes in Russia. Or for this purpose you should become a president at first. One similar oligarch quite recently assured the electorate of the neighboring country with the same oath. His name is Petro Poroshenko. He swore to give the people of Ukraine everything he had sown with his own back-breaking labor. But he isnât in a hurry. So begin with yourself! Show the world an image of the âresponsible taxpayer,â then perhaps, somebody (strongly naive) will also believe you.15. Liberalism as you understand it, Mr. Khodorkovsky, is an absolute delusion. This doctrine which completely ignores God, spirit, culture, mankind, society and regards an individualâs private material interests and finances, as of paramount importance, is false. Liberalism, understood in such manner, is absolutely incompatible with original freedom: how can be a person free, if society in which he lives, is slave to interest rates, debt bondage to the international financial oligarchy and its local supervisors? Should all human life be subordinated to the search and enhancement of material benefits with oneâs bank account statement as the sole criterion? Today liberalism, on which the USA has built its world hegemony, has replaced the totalitarian ideology, is unacceptable for Russia in every shape or form â" whether political, economic or legal. This is most important: for you, Mr. Khodorkovsky, liberalism is the ultimate truth and national development and social justice is good for populism. But in Russia liberalism is doomed, it is acceptable neither by the right, nor left. It is colonial ideology going against our Russian identity. Trying to destroy this identity for the sake of a celebration of liberal ideology would destroy Russia, though this is your ultimate goal. 16. Socially oriented and based on Christian values, the Russian state is the purpose, a point of reference and the strategy of real Russian patriots. To achieve this purpose "right" and "left", supporters of a monarchy and socialism can unite absolutely and freely. And, of course, such state has to be based on a firm observance of the precepts of law. But what is your relations to this? After all, you need to tempt the people so that they are inclined to listen to slogans on the creation of a "socially oriented national state" (without understanding how to build the "national" state on a place of the centuries-old Russian Empire in which hundreds of nations lived peacefully and developed). You throw this bone to us, the Russian people. But Russians are no longer the trustful herd, which for the past century twice "pecked" on promises of "milk and honey" and as a result spilled oceans of the blood. Sincerely I hope that weâve learned something and that we will manage to distinguish truth from lies wrapped in a beautiful wrapper. The socially oriented national state will not be composed of oligarchs, who are the footmen of Rotschilds. Mr. Khodorkovsky, national and social issues: these concepts demands clean hands and a faultless biography. War is the tragedy which sometimes impossible to avoid 17. The US hegemony means war. We see it in Libya, in Syria, in Iraq, and Afghanistan, in Ukraine. Everywhere, US helps to carry out "color revolutions," where fascists, extremists, fundamentalists come to the power. To be the supporter of the USA, the West and NATO â" means to be a fascist helper, the lawyer of war. This war is waged against the whole of Mankind, which is no longer interested in living by American rules and serving obediently the world financial oligarchy. 18. This war is waged against Russia, against Ukraine. Those heroes who have gotten up in defense of the Russian World, who fight in Novorossiya, didn't want this war. They wanted the peace. But peace can't be at the price of freedom and dignity. In the conditions of the neo-Nazi junta brought to power in Kiev by your masters, Mr. Khodorkovsky and supported by you personally, a life is not a life and peace is not the peace. Russians in both, Crimea and Novorossiya stand up for freedom and justice, for the rights of national development, for their language and culture. It was war against war. Your appeals to peace isn't simple hypocrisy, it is treachery, like everything else with you. We are simply on different sides of the frontline, and your words for me who took active part in military operations in Novorossiya sound like appeals from other side: "Russian, give up! There will be a peace! You were deceived!" In reply to such calls during combat conditions there is one answer. Guess, what? Problem of Russia today is not that a war is (as you say) allegedly being driven by Russia. On the contrary, Putin did everything possible and does everything possible to avoid "big" war (the small one USA is already launched by the hands of Kiev and goes on, claiming human lives daily). To reproach the authorities of Russia that she doesn't leave the Russian World to the mercy of fate, is blasphemously. Defending this thesis, you find support from the westernized financial elite which regularly gathers for anti-Russians "Marches for the peace". However, you should say goodbye forever to those who stood on the side of historical Russia and social justice and this is a vast majority of people. You are on other side of Crimea and Novorossiya, which now, more than ever, rally the Russians, supporting unconditionally decisive steps of Putin in this direction. National mobilization 19. Acting authorities brought Russia to the threshold of a decisive breakthrough for independence, power and freedom, which will bring her out of the zone of direct influence of American hegemony. Unfortunately, in my private judgment, the specified breakthrough has obviously been slowed down (I suspect, by your secret and obvious adherents who still have huge influence, thanks to the stolen riches and high internal political influence, bought with that). Hesitations regarding the need to move forward are visible also. But people of the country are quite ready for it and it frightens you. The hysterics concerning the threat of "the Chinese protectorate" also occurs from here. "The Chinese threat" is in the theory, so far. But the protectorate established by the USA over Russia, as a result of Gorbachev and Yeltsinâs treason is a fact of life. The main threat to the sovereignty of Russia now is an aggressive move by the world financial oligarchy and Russiaâs fifth column, who are frightened at the possibility of losing Russia from the slop trough of the "colonial economy.â 20. The world financial oligarchy desperately and frenziedly fights against the revival of Russia. If Russia withstands this fight, it has a future; she will return to history and will win. But if the sales agent of world financial oligarchs, who hates all Russians (such as you), comes to the power in Russia, we will fall in to a chasm and in comparison to the gangster era of â90s, that will seem like a children's game. Disintegration of the country with all that implies in the form of wars, general poverty, hunger, epidemics and large-scale technogenic catastrophes, is what awaits us. Now it happens, on much smaller scale, I had to observe personally more than once. Quite recently â" in Ukraine, where "cherries" are still ahead. After all, Mr. Khodorkovsky, you want to help the West to destroy again what Putin in the 2000th started restoring. But you won't be able to manage it because we are Russians, God is with us! World financial oligarchy, priests of Mammon, having put themselves in the place of God and on its own behalf, overplayed itself. The American hegemony falls, as a colossus on clay feet. The West falls: its indigenous people die out; European countries in 20 years will become Muslim; the Christian culture is tired out on the periphery of public life; China officially became the largest economy in the world; The USA isnât able to pay its huge national debt; they are shaken by social and racial disorders on their soil, The West is in an agony and sows on the world stage only chaos and destructions, blood and sufferings. We have to go in another direction, towards revival of Great Russia against all threats and calls. The enormous turn is already made in this regard- Putin brought Crimea back to Russia and nobody will be able to take it away from us! 21. You started talking about the Russian exploits, but reduced it to modernization and labor. Probably, you believe that the future happiness of the Russian people is as slave labor for the benefit of world financial oligarchy which you represent. And for low-standard "shows,â which guarantee returning the person to a condition of the an animal, following the simplest instincts. Well, then "only over our dead bodies!" The Russian people have absolutely other horizons and purposes, and not dumb submission to the corrupted western elites. Here I will distract from your theses and I will briefly formulate our Russian answer which is expressed by a simple formula "For Faith, the Tsar and Fatherland". For these sacred concepts the Russian people from time immemorial went to die, perfectly understanding that battling for them is a battle for themselves and for the future. Today it means quite concrete loyalty: to the Russian Orthodox Church, to the Russian state and Supreme Commander V. V. Putin. 22. Last fifteen years Russia prepared itself for the breakthrough in the great Russian future. Now it is time to make it happen. Igor StrelkovRussia Has Experienced a Spiritual Resurrection
Putin Exposes Criminal Global Order http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=3d3_1414311541 Russia in grim go Kremlin in defiant mood as Western sanctions be PutinÃ¢ÂÂs Choices in Ukraine Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. That is the situation for Putin with regards to the crisis in Ukraine right now. As before, the blogger called “the Saker” describes Russia’s choices...Putinâs Choices in Ukraine
Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. That is the situation for Putin with regards to the crisis in Ukraine right now. As before, the blogger called “the Saker” describes Russia’s choices in an excellent way. What is going on is unbelievable. It is incomprehensible that the individual countries in Europe can support the […]Ukraine mini
This post is a short follow-up to the -SITREP: very ominous developments post I did a couple of days ago.Several of you have noticed what can only be called a declaration of war on Russia by one of the top figures of the AngloZionist international capital, George Soros who has declared that "Russia is an existential threat to Europe". First, Khodorkovsky, now Soros - it is pretty clear who is gunning for Russia and how, and it is equally clear that what these financiers are really admitting by their bellicose statements is that Putin is an existential threat to them. In the latter statement, they are actually 100% correct (proving one more time that those who say that Putin is an oligarchic puppet are just useful and manipulated idiots).Nuland, Soros, Khodorkovsky, Hillary, Friedman and the list goes on and on and on. The entire Neocon cabal is out for war and they are putting tremendous pressure on the rest of the planet to join.The Europeans are, typically, showing less spine than a microwaved jellyfish: even though they fully know and understand that Uncle Sam is propping up a Nazi regime in Kiev and that the US policies are hurting them, they will do whatever the US tells them. There is no European foreign policy to speak of. All the Europeans can produce is a submissive "yessir! anything you say sir!". One of the most pitiful expressions of this European submission to any order from the US, no matter how stupid, is this fairytale about a Russian submarine lurking inside the Swedish waters.Not only is that a bad replay of the Swedish Cold War era paranoia following the Whiskey on the Rocks incident, in which a navigational error resulted in a Soviet Whiskey-class sub being beached on the rocks near Karlskrona. While the Swedes of the Cold War could be excused for seeing Soviet subs as often as Scots see the Loch Ness Monster, to come up with the same nonsense in 2014 is plain embarrassing and shows that the Swedish military will also execute any other, no matter how evidently stupid. This time around, the BBC claims that the first sign of a Russian sub was, I kid you not, a "radio conversation in Russian was reportedly detected on Thursday 16 October between the Stockholm archipelago and the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad, where Russia's Baltic fleet is based". Apparently, there are people dumb enough to believe this kind of nonsense.Seriously, funny as these "Swedish fairytales" are, we should not overlook the fact that the intention behind them is not funny at all: to create fear and possibly a pretext for a confrontation.In the meantime, in Banderastan, things are getting worse and worse every day and the only thing holding back a full scale Ukie attack on Novorussia is the fear of further military defeats before the elections. But short of a major change in dynamic, a Ukie attack will happen as soon as the elections are over. One thing which could delay such an attack would be an anti-Poroshenko coup in Kiev.Though this has not quite been reported that way, one thing which did come out of the Milan summit is that the Ukrainians have basically admitted that they have no money at all. None. Hence all the talks about the Europeans forking the money for the Russian gas. Also, the cold season has begun and from now on its all just going to get worse and worse.One more important item:The deadline to post comments to Khazin has just passed.I have to admit that even in my wildest dreams I could not have imagined such a huge number of questions. Next, the Russian Saker Blog Team Leader and myself will have to decide on the number of questions we will forward to Mikhail Khazin and what methodology to follow to select questions. We might combine similar question into one. I am not sure, but I will keep you posted. Kind regards,The SakerTranscarpathia, Transnistria and Gagauzia SitRep 06 Oct
Transcarpathia ATO Some of the injured and wounded ATO forces reported last week have been identified and reported in local Transcarpathian press. One ATO action against the Novorossian forces resulted in the death of one individual and the wounding of six, one seriously. The dead man has been identified as Major Victor Semental. The man seriously injured has died of his wounds. He has been identified as Robert Petrovich, 24 years, married with a 2 month child. He has been buried at Volonvaha, about halfway between Donetsk and Mariupol. A ceremony was held at Vynogradiv to honour three Transcarpathians described as 'soldier-mercenaries', aged 21-22 years. They are undergoing rehabilitation after being wounded near Lugansk. The Aidar Battalion lost 14 at Lischiansk, including one fighter from Transcarpathia. Of these, eight were killed, including the person from Transcarpathia and 6 were captured. These losses have led to recriminations from the troops. The losses were blamed on the actions of their officers, specifically the battalion commander Sergey Melnichuk, who was reportedly more concerned with campaigning for the election, leaving a 'protege' to order and plan the attack. Other complaints relate to the lack of official recognition as combatants and the lack of support for families of the killed and wounded. A translation of their protest delivered at a press conference in Uzhgorod can be found here. Some of these individuals are possibly active in training other volunteers at a training camp established at an unnamed farm in Transcarpathia. In the past week the remains of another 21 unidentified ATO fighters have been buried at Krasnopolsky cemetery, Odessa. This is in addition to the 116 unknown already buried there. Rotation of police officers to and from the east continues. Their primary duty seems to be as guards on block posts, sometimes close to the front line. One individual from a group of five recently returned after a month at the front related that the medics of the troops relied on local residents for medical support. Four police officers were awarded diplomas for their part in 'repelling Russian exploration' around Mariupol. A further 15 traffic police have departed for the front. A total of 400 police officers have spent periods of duty at the front. A group of 50 Green berets has returned with no losses after serving 3 months of duty around Kharkiv and Lugansk oblasts. Either they were very skillful, very lucky or possibly based away from main zones of combat in this area. The Transcarpathian 128th Brigade is reportedly active around Debaltseve. The area is reported to be quiet, with the exception of the incursions by small reconnaissance groups, some of which are described as being unarmed. This seems to bear little relation to the action going on in this area. The casualty figures for the Ukrainian forces are not clear. One indicator for a very large number of real casualties is the need to send wounded abroad for treatment and rehabilitation. Some have been sent to Croatia, and Hungary has offered to treat some in Budapest. I believe that at least one of the Baltic states, possibly Latvia, has also taken in Ukrainian wounded. Economy The main economic activity reported relates to attempts to control the Hryvnia exchange rate. The official exchange rate is 12.97-13.13 UAH/USD whilst the black market rate is 13.89-14.14 UAH/USD. In Transcarpathia, officials have caught 15 small scale operations for illicit currency exchange. The amounts involved are small, typically a few hundred USD, so this has no effect on the actual economy, serving just as a deterrent to the small scale operators. In contrast, the major Ukrainian banks have sold 100 million USD in one day in an attempt to stabilise the exchange rate. There are plans to issue bonds for another 200 million USD. Inflation is running fairly high in Ukraine. Transcarpathia has the lowest regional rate at 2.3% for the previous month. The year to date inflation figure is reported to be 16.6% against an expected rate of 18.4%. Transcarpathia salaries have seen a drop of 10.4% to the end of August compared to the year before, when inflation is taken into account. The authorities have made a concession to those individuals supporting the troops by providing equipment. The customs duty for items brought in by individuals intended for troops at front has been reduced. Given the dire economic situation, it remains to be seen how much of this material ends up in a general black market. Energy Energy supplies remain a problem. One solution has been promotion of gas conservation. In Transcarpathia the use of wood as fuel is being encouraged. Approximately 188 villages in Transcarpathia are not connected to the gas distribution network. There is a shortage of liquefied gas for these customers. A reduction in subsidies to lower consumption customers will disproportionately affect poorer customers. Some figures have been produced showing the proportion of bills paid. It is claimed that Transcarpathia has paid 100% of its energy bills whilst oblasts in the west and central Ukraine have paid between 61% and 76% of the bills. The lowest payment rates come from Odessa (31%), Donetsk (27%), Dnipropetrovsk (22%), Lugansk (15%) and Crimea (11%). Of these, the surprises are Odessa and Dnipropetrovsk. Mobilisation There have been unconfirmed reports of a fourth wave of mobilisation in other parts of Ukraine. The details relate to just a few individuals so the notices may actually be delayed third phase notifications rather than a widespread fourth phase. Politics The Lustration Law signed by Poroshenko may affect up to one million people in Ukraine. In Transcarpathia, 39 officials have been affected so far, mostly heads of administrative groups and sometimes their deputy. The local press reports that 19 individuals 'resigned on their own' and the rest are affected by the new law. It is no longer news that the most prominent Transcarpathian in the government, Valeriy Geletey has been demoted from Minister of Defence. He is now the Head of State Security. The US / NGO nexus may be placing another tentacle around Transcarpathia. Dmitry Turzanski, the chief editor of Mukachevo News, which prominently promotes one of the Baloha brothers, has become the head of the Transcarpathian branch of the Committee of Voters of Ukraine. Members of this NGO receive training from USAID and OSCE, ostensibly in 'voting transparency'. Given the close link between USAID and the CIA, and the latter's interest in media control and manipulation, Mr Turzanski may meet up with some 'interesting' people. Recently Hungary has raised difficulties in relation to the reverse supply of gas to Ukraine, with Orban rightly pointing out that Hungary's needs must come first. The prediction that Orban was on his way to being persona non-grata may be correct. There are reports of US sanctions against unnamed Hungarian individuals and officials, possibly restricting entry of such individuals into the US. This is seen as punishment for an apparent rapprochement with Russia over the gas issue. Another factor may be the investigation by Hungarian tax authorities of some US firms operating in Hungary. Propaganda Kiev Kev and his buddies continue to delight. They claim that Russian mercenaries increasingly less willing to fight, as a result of heavy losses imposed by the ATO forces. Specific reports include the death of one Chechen fighter and three Russian military officers. One of the RUssian military officers is named as General Sergei Andreichenko. In addition, the removal of the [non-existent ed.] Russian forces is not happening. On more serious note, a couple of very slick propaganda movies have appeared. There is obviously some serious money going on in an attempt to wash over the Nazi undertones of the Ukraine regime. The first, Where is Ukraine? will be shown in schools. The second one is Every one of us. This seems to be the work of a Marc Raymond Wilkins. It is worth printing his self-justification in full: "Marc Raymond Wilkins Hello Konstantin! I am Marc Wilkins, the director of the army-film. What you are writing above is... (trying to find a kind word...) ... very wrong. I directed this video for free, I payed [sic], from my own personal money, a couple of thousand dollars into the budget, to make it. We made it, because we believe in independence, freedom and unity of Ukraine. We understand that Putin is afraid of a nation which seeks true freedom. Putin is afraid of a Maidan in Moscow, thats [sic] why he and his people are trying everything to humiliate the tragic maidan-victory and the new economy of Ukraine. I directed and co-produced this video because Ukraine become a second home, since working there for over eight years. Konstantin, your words are full of propaganda-hate. Think about it." When I see the man loading the Su-25 rocket launcher (0:13), I think about it all right. I think about Inna Kukuruza, shredded by one of those rockets as she was standing outside an office in Lugansk. Resources A useful background reader on the nature of the gas distribution system in Ukraine. Transnistria (aka PMR) and Gagauzia Economy The economies of Moldova and PMR are both troubled. PMR is affected by the blockade from Ukraine and Moldova, which can be seen as part of a plan of action between Ukraine, Moldova and Romania on one hand and Russia on the other. This three-pronged alliance is now omnipresent in relation to Russia and its interests in this region. Moldova has been hit by reverse sanctions from Russia which is still its main export customer in spite of a 25.6% decrease in trade. Romania is Moldova's second largest customer. Moldovan apple growers are seeking compensation from the Moldovan government, and their position has been compounded an increase in yield of 15% over last year. Some reports suggest that Moldovan apples have been re-routed through Belarus in an attempt to bypass sanctions. Foreign trade turnover in PMR amounted to 1.7 billion USD for the first nine months of this year, almost 19% more than the same period last year. A significant part of this is due to the resumption of activity at the Moldovan metallurgical plant located in PMR. Its major trading partner is Russia. In contrast more than 50% of exports from Gagauzia now go to the EU, as a consequence of decreased sales to Russia and Ukraine. Inflation remains low in PMR at 0.77% for the year to date January - September 2014. The inflation figure for the same period in the previous year was 2.38%. Whilst this does not look worrying, the state has a budget shortfall of ~22%. This has been handled by reducing the working week for state employees to four days at 80% of nominal salary. This legislation is due for renewal at the beginning of November. Energy Energy problems in Ukraine impinge on Moldova. Coal shortages in Ukraine allow it to produce only ~70% of the electricity it needs. It has cut electricity exports to the EU and stopped completely supplies to Belarus (which accounted for ~20 million USD lost income for the month). Moldova produces only about 20-25% of its own electricity, the rest is supplied from Ukraine and the hydro electric power plant at Dubasari in the PMR. In order to cope with energy supply fluctuations and uncertainties, Moldova has a plan to create an underground gas storage facility at the port of Giurgiulesti to store gas during summer for use in winter. This project is supported by the EU and by the US. Financial support will come from the World Bank and the IMF. The association of a poor country like Moldova and the World Bank/IMF is not good for ordinary Moldovans. They will pay dearly for any loans long after the politicians involved have moved on. Politics There has been no progress on the JCC path to normalisation of the status of PMR. Moldova unilaterally raises issues outside of the scope of the agenda. One example is an insistence of free movement of people across the security zone separating Moldova and PMR. It does not consider free movement of goods and services, by which it maintains its blockade of PMR. The Moldovan government has also stated it will not agree to an airport at Tiraspol. If this were to go ahead, the it would break Moldovan control over access to and from the PMR. Moldova has also raised the issue of the status of the peacekeeping mission, presumably in an attempt to remove Russian troops to make way for a takeover of PMR. The Russia Foreign Minister has clearly stated that the mandate of the peace keeping mission is not exhausted, and there is no need to remove Russian troops. The Russian contingent of ~400 troops is based on the PMR side of the security zone between Moldova and PMR. A normal troop rotation for part of the contingent is timed for 17-23 October. It should be noted that PMR tried to split from Moldova prior to the fall of the USSR. This was based on fears that Moldova would rejoin Romania. Those concerns are still valid, perhaps even more so, given the resurgence of the Romanian plan to acquire Moldova. Both sides came close to signing an agreement in 2003 but this was averted by direct intervention of Brussels and Washington. Recently reports indicate that Moldova has denied entry to 30 unidentified individuals, presumed to be Russians, and possibly military related to the Russian contingent of the peace keeping force. Moldova has also banned three specific individuals, one associated with the PMR and the other two with Gagauzia. One individual with PMR conn3ctions is named as Vasily Kasirin, a member of the Russian Institute of Strategic Studies. He was involved in meetings with the Prime Minister and Foreign Minster of PMR and Head of an NGO in Tiraspol aimed at strengthening relations between the Russian Federation and PMR. The well-funded program promoting unification of Moldova and Romania (effectively absorption of Moldova into greater Romania) continues. Romania sources promote the idea that the individuals expelled from Moldova are agents of the FSB. An unconfirmed report suggests that 30 billion USD supposedly stolen in Russia has been laundered through Moldovan banks. Moldova only has two solvent banks, whilst the PMR has seven active banks and two that are inactive. Propaganda Moldova, in common with Ukraine, has resorted to banning Russian TV media broadcasts in Moldova. Russia regards this as political censorship. Moldova claims it is to protect itself against unfair competition. Romania, in its paranoia, pulls the 'poor defenceless Romania surrounded by hostile states' card. It has produced a map showing itself surrounded by red states - which include Bulgaria, Serbia, Hungary, Ukraine and Moldova. I guess we are supposed to believe that all these states are controlled by 'Teh Evul Russia' (also coloured red) which just wants to 'Wipe Romania Off The Map'Â®. Poor PMR does not even get a mention - it appears to have been wiped off the map. Separatism The two other Russian citizens mentioned above were declared undesirable by the Moldovan government. Their crime was to take part in round table discussions, held in Chisinau 9-13 October, to discuss economic aspects of Eurasian integration of the Republic of Moldova. One of them, Andrei Medvedev was said to be an agent of the FSB. In August 2013, members from their institute, Polycontact, conducted a survey in Gagauzia. This survey found that 65.1% of respondents were in favour of entry into the Customs Union, whilst only 6.4% favoured entry into the EU. A referendum held in February 2014 reported that 97% voted against joining the EU and for joining the CU. It should be born in mind that Moldova is a poor country, and relies on remittances from migrant Moldovans for a significant part of its GDP. The majority numerically work in Russia and these provide the greatest proportion of income. Moldova's actions appear to be another case of a government acting against its own interests, or more specifically, against the interests of its people. Resources A short essay on the supposed parallels between Novorossia and PMR The situation in Donbass: between Transnistria and Beirut" A summary of articles from the PMR press The Russians will soon have to tighten their belts: overview of the Transnistrian media Analyst view of the implication of actions against Lukoil, preparation for reorganisation of energy distribution in favour of US interests. Vague prospects of the Transnistrian-Russian energy - Executive summary - Yes, it is all about energy, or rather control of profits from energy. Lukoil has concessions to resource deposits in the Black Sea. The Romanians have stated they would like to nationalise Lukoil. No doubt if this were to happen, the nationalised entity would be subsequently privatised for the benefit of US corporations. The US could deploy ships in the Black Sea to protect these future assets [sure, there's a treaty limiting deployment, but what's a treaty? It's just a piece of paper]. However, there is a saying that a navy has just two types of vessel; submarines and targets. This would be particularly true in the Black Sea. The planned placement of an Aegis-type system of radar and missile launchers in Romania may be a less vulnerable way of protecting these potential future assets. Quote of the Day: #NAF ?#?Motorola? says he doesn't need night vision goggles. 2 cups of 'magic mushroom' tea and he sees bright neon-red men in dark.Germany Plans to Expand its Military Operations in the Middle East
The German government intends to massively expand its military engagement in the Middle East, including in both Iraq and Syria. On Wednesday, the SÃ¼ddeutsche Zeitung, citing government sources, reported that the foreign and defence ministries are reviewing plans for the…The Reasons Why Russia Will Not Invade Ukraine
Russia will not invade Ukraine and here are the reasons. A lot of energy is right now spend on trying to get Russia more involved with the civil war in Ukraine. TheÂ New World Order cabal wants it because they want NATO to get a reason to come to the defense of the new government they […]Top Russian Church Official Calls for Banning Internet and Video Games Till Age 21
This article originally appeared on the hugely popular Russian Christian news site, Pravolavie.ru Father Smirnov is a media phenomenon in modern Russia. A brilliant orator, and highly erudite, he is famous and wildly popular for his earthy, witty, and penetrating sermons, which are broadcast weekly on internet and television. Via:: Top Russian Church Official Calls...Blog news and donations update
Dear friends,This has been a "week from hell" for me, with the main blog down for days, but now at least this problem has been fixed. Still, since there are still some odd things happening with the new blog, I will continue to double-post on both blogs, for the time being.The Latin American Saker Blog is coming along nicely with a top-notch team being assembled for various Latin American countries and I hope to announce its official start very soon.Next week I hope to publish an extensive analysis of what I believe is a full-spectrum US war on Russia. The "frontlines" of this war cut not only trough the Ukraine, but also across Novorussia and even across Russia.Since a lot of you have asked for this, I have made the full transcript of the discussion of geopolitics on Russian TV available by clicking here. Finally, I want to thank all those of you how have sent donations recently:Via PayPal:JSA, LB, PE, EM, AJ, MCMG, JS, RAB,JT, KS, FB, SB, CS, BK, HK, MD, DB, WE, LM, JEM, JH, NGG, BG, AW, RS, HI, DS, AB, MW, SF, RM, EFL, IBDF, SB, AP, JP, SC, AWMD, VB, ND, RH, HPO, JM, KA, RKS, Via SnailMail:DK, HJ, BRMy family and myself are all deeply grateful to you for this assistance without which we would be in big trouble! Thanks so much for not giving in to "donor fatigue" and for keeping up your support.Kind regards and many thanks,The SakerThe Reasons Why Russia Will Not Invade Ukraine
Russia will not invade Ukraine and here are the reasons. A lot of energy is right now spend on trying to get Russia more involved with the civil war in Ukraine. TheÂ New World Order cabal wants it because they want NATO to get a reason to come to the defense of the new government they […]NEO â" EU Declares War on Russia and Europe
- Is the EU going to force Putin to launch the counter-sanctions on all EU car, truck and bus imports by launching its latest sanctions against Russia?Eurosatory â" The Largest International Land and Air Land Defence and Security Exhibition
Eurosatory - the largest international land and air land defence and security exhibition was very interesting and informative.Putinâs Choices in Ukraine
Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. That is the situation for Putin with regards to the crisis in Ukraine right now. As before, the blogger called “the Saker” describes Russia’s choices in an excellent way. What is going on is unbelievable. It is incomprehensible that the individual countries in Europe can support the […]Oligarchs beat Nazis in Ukraine elections
According to exit polls, here are the (provisional) results of the elections in Banderastan:Poroshenko: 23%Iatseniuk: 21%Self-Help: 13%Opposition Block: 7%Liashko: 6%Tiagnibok: 5%Timoshenko: 5%Assuming this is more or less correct, this means that the various oligarch controlled parties (in blue above) have won a strong victory against the various Nazi parties (in red): 44% vs 16%. Even if we add the Self-Help party to the Nazis, we still get 44% vs 29%.I think we will have to wait for Wednesday for official and final results.Kind regards, have a great week.The SakerTop Russian Church Official Calls for Banning Internet and Video Games Till Age 21
This article originally appeared on the hugely popular Russian Christian news site, Pravolavie.ru Father Smirnov is a media phenomenon in modern Russia. A brilliant orator, and highly erudite, he is famous and wildly popular for his earthy, witty, and penetrating sermons, which are broadcast weekly on internet and television. Via:: Top Russian Church Official Calls...Speech by Putin to Russian Lawmakers about Crimean Referendum
Historical speech by President Putin to Russian lawmakers March 18 2014 about the referendum in Crimea and the acceptance of Crimea into the Russian Federation. I remember being in Moscow listening to the direct transmission of this historical speech by president Putin. Even if I am not Russian, I couldn’t help to feel how this […]CrossTalk: Ukraine's Free Fall
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Xj7NvRcerw?rel=0]The Many Reasons Bulgaria Is Sympathetic to Russia
Plamen Ralchev is a professor at The University of National and World Economy in Sofia, Bulgaria. This article originally appeared at The Conversation. Though clearly written by a pro-Western leaning academic who makes several dubious claims the article nonetheless lays out a number of ways in which Bulgaria is tied to Russia. Via:: The Many...Putin Speaks
On April 17, Putin held his annual televised Q & A session. He did it with ordinary Russians nationwide. He did it for the 12th time. Doing so connects with them.CNN: Swat Drill at Washington School Day Before Shooting
CNN broadcast a strange announcement during yesterdayâs coverage of the school shooting in Washington state, setting off theories that the shooting may have been a premeditated event. Yesterday it was reported that a freshman student at the Marysville-Pilchuck High School…NEO
- "Mr. Stachnio has a great review of the 650 Western color revolution NGOs operating in Russia that are funded with deficit spending US taxpayer dollars."Russia Brain Drain Saps Talent as Sanctions Hit Financing
Since Russia annexed Crimea in March, VKontakte Founder Pavel Durov left for the United Arab Emirates to develop a mobile social network, saying he was unwilling to comply with government demands to turn over personal data on Ukrainian users.RussiaIs Russia Trying To Crash The American Stock Market?
by ZenVortex It appears that Russia, probably in collaboration with China, is retaliating against sanctions and oil price manipulation by trying to disrupt the Anglo/Zionist money markets and crash the American stock market. If successful, the strategy will produce an economic decline in the USA and Europe similar to that which followed the collapse of the American housing market in 2008. Last week saw a major increase in volatility in the financial markets. The outstanding event was a single massive trade of $3/4 Billion that caused a flash crash of the SP 500 futures market. Similar flash crashes have occurred in the Australian dollar (and probably other Anglo/Zionist currencies) during the last 6 months and are caused by single massive trades that cause an explosion of volatility. This is not High Frequency Trading, but single massive orders hitting the market like tactical nuclear weapons. The massive trades in the Australian dollar have usually coincided with the opening of the Shanghai stock exchange, which suggests that the Chinese government is involved. A typical crash lasts about one second and can cause extreme losses for investors who are in the market when it happens. The effect of these crashes is to dramatically amplify market volatility and cause investors to leave the market. If the volatility continues ~ especially in the American stock market ~ it is likely to lead to a major crash as institutional investors dump their shares, followed by mass exodus by the general population as fear and panic set in. It's interesting to note that the size of the Australian dollar trades was exactly 7,500 contracts every time the crash took place and the SP 500 trade was 75,000 contracts (the SP 500 is a correspondingly bigger market). The numbers 7,500 and 75,000 reinforce the theory that these trades originated from the same source.The Many Reasons Bulgaria Is Sympathetic to Russia
Plamen Ralchev is a professor at The University of National and World Economy in Sofia, Bulgaria. This article originally appeared at The Conversation. Though clearly written by a pro-Western leaning academic who makes several dubious claims the article nonetheless lays out a number of ways in which Bulgaria is tied to Russia. Via:: The Many...Community brainstorming: I am swimming against a Tsunami
Dear friends,As I mentioned yesterday, I have come to the conclusion that I need to share with you the problems which I and my blog are having and, frankly, to ask for your help. I have been trying to avoid this, but several good friends have strongly urged me to do so and time has proven that they were right.First, I will begin by a short "state of the community" mini-report so we can all see how far we have got and where we all are now.Since 2007 this blog has been a "one-man show" where one anonymous dude shared his thoughts with an abstract (and very small but also very nice) Internet audience. The war in the Ukraine changed all that. From a blog which almost never even mentioned the Ukraine (I was focused mostly on the Middle-East) the Saker Blog rapidly became a 99% Ukraine-centered blog. Along with that, an explosion in the number of readers happened: while for years I had maybe a couple of hundred visitors (on a good day), this spring it went from hundreds, to thousands, to tens of thousands to the absolute record of just under 70'000 in one day in August. Then, it slowly tapered off back to a more reasonable 20'000-30'000 per day, depending on the events in the Ukraine: the worse the war, the more readers I got (-: which made me feel like a "war profiteer" :-). The second huge change which suddenly happened was the the small community around this blog suddenly massively grew in size. It all began when a wonderful French lady ("C" - encore merci pour tout!!) wrote to tell me that she thought my blog should be translated into French. I replied "great - but I cannot do it myself". She said that she would try to find somebody.A few months later there are now six, soon to be seven (Latin American is almost ready!), independent Saker blogs - all tremendously successful, all with their own large readership and attached YouTube channels. Then there are the guest-author's SITREPS: Ukraine, Iraq, Nigeria, Transcarpathia Transnistria and Gagauzia, and Latin America. Two of them come directly from a war zone and thus depend on the author's personal safety and access to communications. All of them provide an insider look which is simply not to be found elsewhere. I consider these SITREPs a fantastic asset to our community.Furthermore, there are two more recent developments which I am delighted with and which deserve special mention here: Alexander Mercouris has agreed to post his (always excellent) FB commentaries on this blog and I am now a regular contributor to Russia Insider with whom the Saker community can now also collaborate on various issues. In other words, our community is rapidly growing. And what all this means is this:We are making a real difference. We have established a presence in a record time and the future prospects look nothing short of fantastic. Furthermore, in this current war the information aspect is at least as important as bullets and guns. In fact, the Empire spends a lot more on information warfare then on the military hardware actually used. In other words, while a diverse community of like-minded people like ours has neither the goal or the means to beat the big heavyweights like the AngloZionist media or special services, we are big enough to make a difference and they cannot completely ignore us. At the very least, we can serve to crash their propaganda about a consensus in their support. Finally, we can be a people-to-people bridge between the people living under the AngloZionist Empire's rule and the those living in the (truly) "free world" lead by Russia.I still have to pinch myself from time to time to check whether this is " really real", or this is just a dream (the regular contact I have with the wonderful people working on the other Saker blogs and that I now consider as friends, proves to me that, yes, this is real). Finally, because of the very high risks of censorship and/or legal attack, I have agreed to move this blog to a new server in a safe(r) jurisdiction (Iceland) and on a privately owned server. As you know, this important and necessary step has, so far, been less than a success (More about that further below) So let's turn to my problems now.They can all be summarized in a simple expression: time and money.The huge growth of this blog and the other independent Saker blogs and of our (now truly worldwide) community did not just happen "like that". At each step of the way, I had to find the right people, discuss an immense array of issues and, of course, make mistakes and try to learn from them. I had to cope with at least one major crisis which took a lot of energy to mediate and resolve and I had to deal with a lot of people who promised much but delivered nothing. I am not complaining about this, but I want you to understand that it all entails a huge number of hours of work to organize and fix. All the while while producing analyses of the civil war in the Ukraine and moderating one to several hundred comments each day (I had asked two friends to help me with that task, but one concluded that the philosophy of this blog did not make him feel comfortable while the second one simply dumped me with less than a week's notice).As a result of all these developments, my daily workload for this blog has been exponentially going up throughout the spring, summer and fall. At the same time, however, donations have been going down. So let's talk about these donations (sigh, deep breath, plunging).Those who have been here long enough know that the entire idea of donations came from readers who literally demanded that I create some kind of donation option. I have to tell you that I have always been extremely uncomfortable and embarrassed taking about money (even writing this makes me feel absolutely terrible) but that I decided to give it try. To my most absolute amazement, donations began coming in and even in amounts sufficient enough to make a difference in my family's budget. In fact, without these donations we could not have made it through the summer without sinking further into debt (full disclosure: we have a house and 2 old cars, but no savings, no pension, and plenty of credit card debt). Over the past couple of months, however, these donations have been steadily decreasing and, frankly, my family and I only pulled it through thanks to one individual from northern Europe who has been helping month after month and without whom I could never have maintained this blog. Clearly, many supporters are suffering from "donor fatigue" or are also maxed out.From the beginning of the existence of this blog I always have been reluctant to create categories of readers or to offer some products/services only to paying subscribers. This is still something I don't want to do. Still, I am told by friends that I should consider such an option. In practical terms, we are talking about the possibility of writing a book about Russia based on some of the articles I have posted here and/or making a podcast. Right now, I have way too much to do just to keep things running, but I could consider these options in the future, especially if my financial situation continues to deteriorate. At this point in time, however, I cannot add any further activities or ventures to what I have to do every day, not unless I find a way to squeeze 36-48 hours of life into a 24 hour day. Worse, if I have to take on these ventures just to make ends meet, I will have to dramatically decrease the time spent on this blog and this, right at the time when the Empire's war against Russia is heating up and the Ukraine is about to explode again. This makes no sense to me.By the way, I am often accused of being a "paid Putin agent". Every time I read that I sigh in think "if only that was true...". The reality is that Vladimir Vladimirovich has not contributed a single kopek to this blog (yet?), nor has any other Russian government, corporate or even private entity. A few Russian readers have, but I can count them on the fingers of one hand. Considering the absolutely dismal Russian performance in the current PR war against the western MSM propaganda machine, I am at loss for words to describe this apparent indifference. I can only surmise that this the "not without honor, except in your own country, and in your own house" phenomenon at work.If I had a magic wand, I would go back to doing what I think I do best and what most of you would probably want me to do: write analyses for this blog. But in order to do that, I need to be honest with you and admit to you that I hit a kind of a "wall" and that I need your help. If you value what you get on this blog then please help me work for this blog in conditions where I can at least preserve my mental health and focus on my writing rather than on my ballooning debt. I am sorry to be so blunt about this, but at this point I have no other choice.Then there is the issue of the new blog.Fundamentally, I think that the decision to move the blog to Iceland is a sound one. Furthermore, I personally like the new blog a lot, both the design, the visual appearance and the work on it as an author and administrator. Simply put: WordPress is infinitely better than Blogger. Furthermore, there is a real risk of being shut down here, on Blogger. So I see no reasons to question the original idea. The implementation is, however, a different business. Here I personally responsible for a number of mistakes. I will spare you all the technical details, but the bottom line is that for the time being the new blog needs to go back into testing and until it is fixed we all have to only use this blog here, on Blogger, for the foreseeable future. The new blog will be back and, hopefully, the next time around it will be more solid than the first one. But for the time being - Blogger is the only option.The bottom line is this: I need your help.First, if you have not contributed to this blog in the past, please do. Right now less than 0.25% of the readers of this blog have sent a donation. If you have, please consider contributing again or even increasing your contribution.Second, please let me know what you think of the idea of creating "for purchase" products as opposed to keep everything for free. Specifically, please let me know if you would be interested in purchasing a book and/or a podcast. My own preference goes for the former, but you might think otherwise. Third, do you have any ideas about fund-raising/crowd-funding? Are there any amongst you who are knowledgeable about this realm about which I know nothing? Would any of you offer your time as a volunteer fund-raiser of some type? What about this idea: can the community support my work by raising funds for me not by sending donations, but literally by creating some kind of fund-raising mechanism? Seeking out donors amongst friends? Organizing some kind of mailing list or dedicated website? Write to Vladimir Vladimirovich and ask for his help (just kidding!)? Seriously, if you cannot donate or are maxed out - can you help with your brain and, especially, your time?In other words, while advice about what I could/should do is great, it would be even greater if some of you could actually take it upon themselves to help directly. Right now, I am so overworked that I stopped writing my thesis, stopped all my recreational activities and my daily reading is down to 15min a day max: I have 3 books in the pipeline to review for this blog, and I had only enough time to read 3/4 of the first one...Fourth, please forgive me all the problems with the new server and the back and fourth between the old and new one. For the time being, let's stay here and if suddenly I get shut down by Blogger - then go to any of the other Saker blogs (which are all safely hosted in Iceland) until the new blog is fixed.Fifth and last, but most definitely not least - do you have any other suggestions or ideas? I really hope that this appeal to the community will generate one (or several) solutions. So far, what I call the "spontaneous self-organization of people" has been nothing short of miraculous for me and since the friend I mentioned yesterday did write "We can fix everything except you" I have decided to honestly lay out in front of "all of y'alls" (as they say in Florida) the stuff I am struggling with and which destroys my peace of mind.Right now, I have the feeling that I am swimming against a Tsunami and I am losing the strength to do so very fast. Please think about it all and if you can help, in any form, please do.I would prefer if you posted your reactions/ideas/suggestions here, but feel free to also email me if you prefer. I will probably not have the time to respond individually to most (or even any) of your comments/emails, but I will try as best I can. And I will definitely read every single with the greatest attention.For the rest of the week, I will probably post less as I will be working on many of these behind-the-scenes problems, but since I left you with two *truly* world-class articles to consider (Strelkov's reply to Khodorkovsky and the Glaziev - Khazin press conference) and since the "questions to Khazin" are still being collected until Friday, I trust that this is fair enough. Of course, in case of critical developments I will set everything aside and keep you posted as best I can.Okay, readers and friends, your turn now. Please help in any way you can.Thanks and kind regards to all,The SakerEagles of Empire and Economic Terrorism: Are Vulture Funds Instruments of US Foreign Policy?
Is it a coincidence that the vulture funds are putting increasing pressure on Argentina as it prepares to develop the worldâs second largest shale gas reserves? Are the vultures instruments of foreign policy? Paranoia or insightfulness in Buenos Aires? Hours…Russia Starts First
Russia, the worldâs second-largest producer of natural gas, has launched its first auction of natural gas on Friday at the St. Petersburg International Mercantile Exchange (SPIMEX). It will be Europeâs largest natural gas trading post. The project is intended to…The Pentagon and Big Oil: Militarism and Capital Accumulation
There is no question that, in the immediate aftermath and for several years following US military conquests, wars, occupations and sanctions, US multi-national corporations lost out on profitable sites for investments. The biggest losses were in the exploitation of natural…Rightwing Groups Muscle in on Ukraine Election
This article originally appeared in Financial Times Rightwing Ukrainian political parties supplied much-needed muscle during anti-government protests on Kiev’s Maidan square earlier this year. A question looming over Sunday’s national elections is whether those parties â" dismissed by pro-Russia forces as âfascistâ extremists â" will now enter parliament. Via:: Rightwing Groups Muscle in on Ukraine...Is the Ebola Outbreak in West Africa a Biological Proxy War?
Russia announced that they have a vaccine effective against Ebola. FromÂ another report in Moscow Times it seems more like they have an effective drug to treat Ebola and not a really a vaccine. The investigative reporter Jon Rappoport (nomorefakenews.com), who have disclosed the fraud behind the HIV-virus and other frauds committed by the BIG PHARMA […]Russia in grim go
Kremlin in defiant mood as Western sanctions beNEO â" Japanese Sanctions against the Russian Federation
- The real threat is who is really running the show in the US and Europe. Is it the elected leaders, or those who are really behind who gets elected?New Blog down
Dear friends,The new blog is down (good thing I kept this one open). As soon as I find out what is going on, I will let you know. In the meantime, the big news is that following today's ballistic missile strike on Donetsk, Zakharchenko has declared the ceasefire over.I apologize for all the problems with the new blog. The SakerOctober Nigeria SITREP (Boko Haram)
by 'Fulan Nasrullah'A few salient points on the so called Ceasefire:1. There is no ceasefire between the trio of Jamaa'atu Ahlis-Sunnah ('Alal-Haqq) of Sheikh Bukar, Ansorul-Muslimiin Harakatul-Muhajiriin, and the Federal Republic of Nigeria.These groups have been engaged in a heavy battles with the Cameroonians on their side of the Mandara Mountains, and they agreed to a temporary cessation of hostilities with Cameroon in several sectors along the border. Part of that agreement was the release of the Chinese an Cameroonian hostages held by Harakatul-Muhajiriin and Ansorul-Muslimiin.2. This ceasefire between the insurgents and Cameroon was reached despite the objections of Khalid Al-Barnawi because the insurgents had suffered heavy losses in recent battles on the Cameroonian front.Sources estimate as much as a thousand to fifteen hundred fighters died in a month of fighting in the Adamawa Mountains.3. Cameroon agreed to this ceasefire because it too had suffered heavy losses in the fight against the insurgents, and it faced an escalation of the fighting and a spread of the conflict out of the border areas where the violence has been contained within to its southern population areas (the Afghanistan Scenario I.e suicide bombings, mass scale terror attacks on civilians in the country's hinterland etc).4. Cameroon has no interest in wiping out Boko Haram as long as the insurgents remain contained across the border inside Nigeria. The Cameroonians only view Boko Haram as a threat because the insurgents have been using their territory as a rear base area and have been recruiting Cameroonians in their thousands to fight in the war in Nigeria. This opens the door to such Cameroonian recruits returning home to launch their own jihad against Paul Biya and his regime.So seeing an opportunity to move the fighting back into Nigeria and preserve the peace in its territory, YaoundÃ© jumped at it.5. The Insurgents expansion campaigns were stalled because they underestimated the Cameroonian resolve to keep the fighting out of Cameroon and they ended up diverting resources from their territorial expansion campaigns to fighting the Cameroonians.6. A ceasefire was asked for by the Nigerian Government and was rejected by all the factions except Shekau's faction.7. The ceasefire agreement reached in N'Djadmena the Chadian capital between Jamaa'tu Ahlis-Sunnah of Shekau had no fixed operational limit attached to it. 8. The Nigerian negotiators asked for the Shekau Faction delegation to bear a message to Shekau that the Nigerian President was seeking to negotiate a permanent solution to this crisis with the insurgents. This same message was sent through Chadian and Cameroonian intelligence channels to the other three factions. ALL THE FACTIONS rejected the offer of comprehensive negotiations, with Shekau's Faction saying that Abubakar Shekau was only interested in a temporary ceasefire.9. Contrary to Federal Government claims there was no agreement to release the Chibok girls as Shekau does not hold them. Shekau holds hundreds possibly thousands of women kidnapped by his foot soldiers across Yobe and Borno States, but he doesn't hold the Chibok girls and he holds no territory in that area at all. Rather Shekau's Faction promised to intercede with Ansorul-Muslimiin who are the ones holding the girls to secure their release..The Federal Government has been trying to portray the ceasefire agreement it reached with Shekau's faction as a political victory. Boko Haram is not a monolithic entity rather it is an ideological movement with for factions only one of whom reached a ceasefire with the Government. Despite this so called ceasefire there was fighting <a href="http:// https://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/top-news/169793-despite-ceasefire-claims-soldiers-kill-25-boko-haram-militants-in-damboa.html">around military positions in the areas close to Damboa Town</a> (Propaganda aside, insurgents still control Damboa). This fighting was between fighters of the other three factions and the Nigerian Army.Will the ceasefire lead to a change on the ground? Not much. Most of the ground fighting in the really active war theatres of Southern Borno and Adamawa has been conducted by the other three factions, with Shekau's faction facing a difficult transition from a terrorist/guerrilla army to a conventional force in Yobe and Northern Borno. Not much fighting has taken place in the Shekau faction's area of operations recently.With the other three factions rejecting any ceasefire negotiations there will definitely be more fighting in the Southern Borno-Adamawa axis as they are not bound by the ceasefire agreement between the Nigerian Government and Shekau. Although the rate at which the insurgents (the trio factions) launch attack would be reduced as they try to reap benefits from the temporary pause in their campaign in Cameroon.Note On My Absence.I am unfortunately not always available these days to write as much as I want to. My time is limited and I am in an area where I am often cut off from internet facilities, thanks to the so called Counter Insurgency Campaign in North East Nigeria and I often have to rely on Cameroonian communications networks that are received over the border, to talk to the outside world.FN.Big Oil, Qataris, Saudis Lick Lips As US âFights ISISâ By Bombing Syrian Pipelines
In yet another example of the infantile nature of NATO propaganda regarding the Syrian crisis, it is now being reported in the mainstream media that the United States must bomb Syrian oil pipelines in order to defeat the ISIS threat…NEO â" Russian
- You won't read anything like this in Western media as it conflicts with their fairy tale of spreading peace and democracy when proxy terrorism is the new game of choice.Poland is Blowing in the Wrong Direction
Poland’s Foreign Minister compares his country’s relationship with USA to a “blowjob without getting paid”. In aÂ taped “over a dinner conversation” with Jacek Rostowski, a former Polish Minister of Finance, Poland’s FM Radoslaw Sikorski allegedly expressed his frustration as … “We will get a conflict with both Russians and Germans, and weâre going to think […]A Very Complete Analysis by the Saker of the Crisis in Ukraine
This is the most complete and, in my opinion, also a very correct analysis of the crisis in Ukraine initiated by the Neocons in the US. I don’t know who this “Saker” really is. But I do know that he knows a lot about Russia, USA and the New World Order. Having followed the Saker’s […]New Rules or a Game without Rules: Ã¢ÂÂWe Need a New Global Consensus of Responsible PowersÃ¢ÂÂ. Vladimir Putin
US War on Iran Takes Bizarre Turn. US Covert Support to Mujahedeen It is not mrly hyprbol whn it is said th US cratd trrorist organizations lik Al Qada or th so-calld “Islamic Stat.” It is documntd fact. Th currnt conflict in th Middl ast may appar to b a chaotic conflagration… NEO Ã¢ÂÂ" Gunnar...Blog news update
Dear friends,Wow! Really. Wow! Your response to my Community Brainstorming: I am swimming against a Tsunami post was nothing short of massive, huge. I got more donations then ever before, I got long and very moving letters of support, and I got a lot of very good advice and suggestions. Frankly, I had never expected such an outpouring of support and I am immensely grateful to you all for it. Truly, it is hard to put in words. I will try though, in the near future. I will call the post "submarines in the desert". I will explain what I mean by that at that time. All I can say is that I am immensely touched and absolutely amazed by your support. As I said - I will discuss this important topic in a future post (now is not the time).I also had the time to think, consider all the suggestions you sent and ask for advice. To keep a long story short, here are my conclusions (organized in the usual time and money categories):Time:First, as soon as I move to the new blog I will have at least three co-moderators to help me with this extremely time consuming task.Second, the Saker community is working on the creation of a "pool of webmasters" which would be able to support all the various Saker websites. We have already received applications from some highly skilled volunteers and we hope that once this system is in place the turnaround time to fix any problems or to implement a needed change will be much shorter. If you are interested and if you have time, availability and strong WordPress skills, please email me.Third, I will keep this (old, blogger) blog indefinitely open as a mirror of the main (new) one although I will eventually close the comments section here. Should anything happen to the main blog, I will always be able to open up comments here. In other words, the blog will have triple-redundancy: new blog, a main (and so far hidden) backup, and the old blog as mirror.Fourth - the new blog should be back online soon. Again, before that happens I will keep you posted.Money: First, the site will, of course, remain 100% free.Second, if anything at all, I have come to the obvious conclusion that the sudden drop in donation was not due to any lack of desire of anybody to donate, but to a lack of reminders to do so. I do not want to put up ads, I do not want to place a constant reminder, I do not want to have fund-drives, I do not want to place big signs or do any other of the many techniques I have seen used which I personally find obnoxious. However, what I am thinking of doing is post short and unobtrusive reminders about donations about once a month in the form of a post.Third, I have decided to try out a monthly podcast which I would also make available for free, but which I would also use as a reminder about donations. My idea is for anybody interested to send in questions about any topic and I would read these questions out and reply to them in a recording which I would then make available for download/streaming. In this way, I could communicate with you in an informal way, simply by speaking directly to you (in English) rather than by always writing.Fourth, I have agreed to write a book based on some topics touched upon in this blog, but organized in a logical way and edited by a professional and a team of volunteers. The book would be available for download along some kind of donations scheme still to be worked out. I will keep you posted.Other miscellaneous issuesThe logo. Again, wow! I did not expect such a massive response :-) Frankly, my main "problem" is that I like almost all of these logos and you seem to like them all. So I am wondering whether there is a way to use them all too. Maybe an animated GIF (though I don't like this format) or some HTML5 equivalent? Maybe a moving banner? Or maybe I will ask one of my webmasters to write a PHP script rotating the logos every week. The main arguments to have various logos is that seems only appropriate for a very diverse community like ours. Latin American Saker Blog. It's happening, I promise. It's just that this a very big enterprise (possibly the biggest Saker blog) and that the main people organizing it are very busy in *meatspace*. I had hoped to officially launch last Friday, but that was not doable. So I hope for an official launch in the not too distant future, but I cannot say when.What about an Italian Saker blog? I have a good friend who has a big archive of Saker articles already translated into Italian, and making one more clone of the Saker blog model websites would not be too hard. All I need is a few Italian volunteers to create a small Italian Saker blog team. Is anybody interested? If yes, please email me.That's it for now.Your turn now - what do you think about these ideas?Thumbs up or thumbs down?Please let me know.Kindest regards and tons of thanks,The SakerU.S.
As Joe Biden pointedly refused to meet with Israel’s Security Chief, Moshe Ya’alon, the Netanyahu government is now terrified of losing essential European trade and American military support as the international community condemns the massacre of civilians in Gaza during…Russia Has Experienced a Spiritual Resurrection
This article originally appeared at the Catholic Herald Via::EXCLUSIVE: Mikhail Khazin Q&A with Saker Blog readers
Dear friends,Do I have a treat for your today!!The famous Russian economist Mikhail Khazin has agreed to participate in a Q&A with the readers of this blog. Here how this will work: during all of next week (until Friday the 24th 6PM GMT), you will have the possibility to submit questions to Mr Khazin. Then the Russian Saker Blog Team and myself will select the best ones and submit them to Mr Khazin, who will email us his answers which we will translate and post here. A couple of important points:1. There are no restrictions on topics - you can ask any question you want on any topic.2. You can ask questions in English or in Russian3. You can ask anonymously, but please choose a alias/nickname but4. Please truthfully indicate the city or, at least, country from which you are writing (for Mr Khazin's own interest)5. Write concisely and clearly, no more than one paragraph.Guys, Mikhail Khazin is really one of the best informed people in Russia. Not only does he know Russian economics, he has first hand and deep knowledge of Kremlin politics and the behind the scenes battles between what I call Atlantic Integrationists and Eurasian Sovereignists. Khazin knows Putin personally and well. In other words - this is a golden opportunity, so please use it the best you can!The SakerPS: for those who might not be familiar with Mikhail Khazin, here is his biography, translated for you by the Russian Saker Team to whom I express my deepest gratitude.PPS: please do not email me but post your questions here Biography of Mikhail Khazin: Mikhail Khazin was born in 1962 in Moscow. He completed his comprehensive study of mathematics in Moscow. For the next 10 years he ran mathematics workshops in various schools and taught students of math-stream classes. After failing to gain admission to the Mechanics and Mathematics faculty at Moscow State University (due to ethnic profiling existing at the time), he enrolled in the Mathematics faculty at Yaroslavl University. In 1980 he transferred to the Probability Theory Department of the Mechanics and Mathematics Faculty at Moscow State University. After graduating from the university in 1984, M. Khazin worked in the Laboratory of Computational Mathematics at the USSR Academy of Sciencesâ Institute of Physical Chemistry. In 1989 he was employed at the USSR Central Statistical Directorateâs Institute for Statistics and Economic Research. In 1992, together with his friends and former students, M. Khazin worked as a head of Analytics Department in one of the then-biggest banks of Russia, ELBIM-Bank. In 1993 M. Khazin entered public office. He worked first for the Labour Centre for Economic Reforms, created by Yegor Gaidar with the purpose of theoretically justifying the reforms, then in the Russian Federationâs Ministry of Economy under the ministers A. Shokhin and later E. Yasin. Meanwhile, divisive issues with the so-called Gaidar-team started emerging, in that there was increasing evidence of embezzlement of government funds, sabotage and unabashed corruption on the part of the Gaidar team. In March of 1997 M. Khazin became a Deputy Chief of the Economic Directorate at the Presidential Administration. In June of 1998 he was discharged from public service for attempting to fight corruption during the privatization (in other words, for standing up against the Summers-Chubais team) and to avert governmental policies that led to the default of 1998. Khazin was unemployed for 2 years and for the next 10 years he was not permitted to leave Russian territory. Since the summer of 2000 Khazin has been employed as a consultant. On September 10, 2001, when participating in the Expert journalâs forum and analyzing the economic situation in the United States, he foresaw a high likelihood of large-scale terrorist attacks organized by the U.S. authorities to explain the deterioration of the economic situation in the country. M. Khazin and his associates at the time elaborated the theory of modern economic crisis. At the beginning of 2002 Khazin published a paper dedicated to the basics of structural crisis in the USA which outlined the scale of the current crisis. 2004 saw the publication of the book âThe Decline of the Dollar Empire and the End of Pax Americanaâ, written in 2003 in collaboration with A. Kobyakov. Since 2002 M. Khazin has been the President of the consulting company Neokon, which mainly specializes in strategic crisis planning. He actively investigates economic theory within a framework of enhanced understanding of modern economic mechanisms that are figuratively and collectively referred to as neoconomics. At present M. Khazin takes a principal interest in studying the structural proportions of post-crisis economics and prices. A number of his articles and interviews about economic problems have been featured in various media.Poland is Blowing in the Wrong Direction
Poland’s Foreign Minister compares his country’s relationship with USA to a “blowjob without getting paid”. In aÂ taped “over a dinner conversation” with Jacek Rostowski, a former Polish Minister of Finance, Poland’s FM Radoslaw Sikorski allegedly expressed his frustration as … “We will get a conflict with both Russians and Germans, and weâre going to think […]Surgeons in East Ukraine Confirm Kiev Used Cluster Bombs
DONETSK, 21 October 2014 (AFP) – Surgeons in east Ukraine’s rebel hub of Donetsk, where dozens of civilians have died in recent weeks, confirmed on Tuesday that some patients were victims of cluster bombs as alleged by Human Rights Watch. Although Kiev vehemently denied that its troops battling the pro-Russian insurgency in the east are...What could the next Junta offensive against Novorussia look like?
Dear friends,On July 1st of this year - just before an imminent Ukie attack - I made a short post entitled Novorussia - Hope for the best, prepare for the worst, and settle for anything in the middle in which I was trying to prepare my readers for the possible consequences of a massive Ukrainian assault.Ð Ð°Ð·Ð±Ð¾Ñ Ð¿Ð¾Ð»ÐµÑÐ¾Ð² - "after action report"Looking back, I would say that what actually took place was neither the best, nor the worst, option, but an "in the middle" kind of outcome: initially, the Ukies almost severed Donetsk from Luganks, but they never had the capability to really enter these cities and execute urban offensive operations. The junta forces did penetrated deeply in Novorussian territory, but they were soon surrounded and the famous "cauldrons" began to form. The biggest loss for the Novorussians was the loss of Slaviansk and Kramotorsk which Strelkov attempted to hold as long as possible apparently in the hope of a Russian military intervention, even though he always knew that Slaviansk was indefensible. When it became clear that the Russians would not come, Strelkov did the right thing and pulled his forces out of Slaviansk and into Donetsk.All in all, the Novorussian Armed Forces (NAF) proved to be a force far superior to the Junta Repression Forces (JRF) which suffered from the following problems:Criminally incompetent top commanders in Kiev and at the operational headquarters.Terrible logisticsPoor moralePoor trainingPoor coordinationA hostile local populationThe strong points of the JRF were:An overwhelming advantage in firepowerAn overwhelming advantage in armorAn overwhelming advantage in numbersA monopoly on heavy weaponsA total control of the skiesThe individual courage and resilience of the soldiers of the regular and, especially, special army unitsThe Novorussians negated these advantages by never presenting a lucrative target, by their high mobility and by their extremely successful air-defenses.The weak points of the NAF were:A acute lack of firepowerA acute lack of armorA acute lack of men (especially specialists)The total absence of heavy weaponsThe absence of a true central commandThe strong points of the NAF were:The extremely high morale of the all the fighting men and womanVery competent commanders and experienced officersVery strong tactical skillsAn excellent knowledge and use of the terrainExcellent intelligence (no doubt with Russian GRU help)Extremely effective air-defenses (which imposed a no-fly zone on the Ukies)Strong support from the local populationA remarkable network of highly skilled technicians capable of repairing, cannibalizing and even rebuilding weapons with old, damaged and abandoned Ukie hardwareAll in all the Novorussians did a superb job negating all the advantages of the Ukies while maximizing on their own strong points. There were ups and down, but I would say that the bottom line of the July-September offensive was a crushing and humiliating defeat for the Ukies and a superb victory for the Novorussians.What if the Junta attacks again?Bu now - Sunday morning - there is a quasi-consensus that the Junta is about to launch yet another massive offensive. Assuming that this is true - and I personally think this is very likely - what are we likely to see? Furthermore, since the same causes tend to produce the same effects, the key question is this: what have the Ukies learned from their defeat this summer and what could they do differently this time around?Alas, I don't have access to any first hand information about how the Junta has been preparing itself for the new assault. Here is what I have found out through the Russian and Ukrainian media:Junta-controlled military factories have been working night and day to produce a large number of tanks, APCs, IFVs and artillery pieces. The Ukrainians have been training their SU-25 and Mi-24 pilots. New volunteer units have been created and regular army units have been re-organized. The Ukies have built defensive lines along key sectors of the front (such apparently "defensive" preparations are actually crucial for any offensive plans since a highly prepared defensive sector can be held by a numerically smaller forces while preventing an counter-attack or envelopment from the other side). We have to assume that more men have been mobilized and trained and that the next Ukie assault will again pit a very large Ukrainian force against a much smaller Novorussian one. But will that be enough for the Ukies to prevail?I don't think so.What the Ukies are preparing is rather obvious. They will pick several key axes of attack along which they will unleash a massive artillery attack. This fire preparation will serve to prepare for a push by Ukrainian armored units (this time around we can expect the Ukrainian infantry to properly defend their tanks and not the other way around). The Ukrainians will not push deep into Donetsk or Lugansk, but rather they will try to, again, cut-off and surround Donetsk in a pincer attack and then negotiate some kind of quasi-surrender by the Novorussians. At most, they will try to enter a few important suburbs. I don't expect much action around Luganks - Donetsk is far more exposed.Now, if I am correct and this is what happens, then please understand and remember this: the correct Novorussian response to this plan is to begin by retreating. It makes no sense whatsoever for the Novorussians to sit and fight from positions which are densely covered by Ukrainian artillery strikes. During the first Ukrainian attack I was dismayed to see how many people clearly did not understand the importance retreats in warfare. The "hurray-patriots" in particular were adamant that the initial Novorussian retreat was a clear sign that, as always, "Putin had betrayed Novorussia" (when the NAF went on a long and brilliant counter-offensive, these "hurray-patriots" fell silent for a while until the moment when Moscow stopped the NAF from seizing Mariupol, at which point they resumed chanting their mantra). The fact is that retreating against a superior forces is the logical thing to do, especially if you have had the time to prepare for a two, possibly, three echelon defense. While I do not know that for a fact, this is what I expect the Novorussians have been doing during all the length of the ceasefire: preparing a well-concealed and layered defense.My hope and expectation is that once the JRF attacks the NAF will, again, carefully retreat, pull the JFR in, and then being to gradually degrade the attacking force. I particular hope that the Russians have finally send some much needed guided anti-tank weapons through the voentorg.Second, the lack of political unity in Novorussia is not as big a military problem as it is a political one. Most Novorussian commanders are clearly very gifted and at least as competent as Strelkov. Folks like Bezler, Kononov, Zakharchenko, Mozgovoi, Khodakovskii, Motorola, Givi and many others do not need to be told what to do to do the right thing in their area of responsibility. The weaker Cossack units have now apparently been reassigned to the Russian-Novorussian border and only combat proven units are facing the Ukie side.I don't think that the Ukie air force will be of much use, if anything the Novorussian air defense probably got even better. Mostly, I fear their long range artillery and their sheer numbers. But even if we look at the worst case scenario (successful Ukie attack cutting off Donetsk) I don't think that the the JRF will prevail. There is still no doubt in my mind whatsoever that if Novorussia is really threatened then Russia will intervene, overtly if needed. From what all sources are reporting, the voentorg is working at full capacity and weapons are flowing in in very large numbers including sophisticated ones. I think that Putin's plan is to try to keep the Nazis out of Novorussia only by means of voentorg. But should that not be enough, I am confident that Russia will overtly move in. There is no way that Russia can accept the fall of Novorussia to the Nazis.The good news is that the Ukies most definitely don't have what it takes for a long, sustained effort. They will risk it all on one powerful push. If that push fails, we will see a flurry of US/EU/OSCE "diplomacy" to save the Ukies and come right back to the negotiating table. At that point the conflict with be "frozen" again (on the Ukie side literally) and the focus will be on keeping the regime in power or replacing it with something else. After that, the next attack can only come in the Spring on 2015.Finally, there is also a more optimistic possibility: the real reason behind the chorus of warnings about a Ukie attack might be the Russian way of telling them "we know what you are up to and we are ready". In theory that should deter a Ukie attack. Alas, we need to remember that a) there is no real power in Kiev - all the decisions are taking by the USA and b) the goal of the next attack might not be to win, but to draw Russia into an overt intervention. I personally believe that this was the plan all along and I have been saying that for months: the real goal of the AngloZionists is to force a Russian military intervention in Novorussia while the real goal of the Kremlin is to stay out and keep Novorussia alive by means of voentorg on one hand, and chaos in Banderastan on the other. So far the Kremlin has prevailed. We will probably soon find out if that strategy will work again.The SakerPresident Putinâs Address to Russian Diplomats (in English)
President Putin is a man of his words. He writes his own speeches and their content tells you what he thinks about Russia and its relationship to other nations. That's why it is well worth to pay attention to his words in this speech ... Download (PDF, 197KB)A "revisionist Russia" on "NATO's doorstepâ
RT reports:US State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki and Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby have been challenged over the Department of Defense's claims that the US must âdealâ with âmodern and capableâ Russian armed forces on NATO's doorstep. Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu expressed âgrave concernâ and âsurpriseâ at a Wednesday speech made by US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel during the Association of the United States Armyâs annual conference. Hagel declared that US armed forces "must deal with a revisionist Russia - with its modern and capable army - on NATO's doorstep.â Kirby was confronted by AP journalist Matt Lee over NATO expansion closer to the Russian borders at the State Department's daily press briefing on Thursday. Here is their exchange:[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LexhW8SCM2c?rel=0]Illusory Ceasefire in Ukraine
Conflict continues. Peace is a convenient illusion. Fascists don't wage wars to quit. Washington manipulates events destructively. It uses its installed stooge government to solidify unchallenged control over Ukraine. Get more info this from VT author Steve LendmanCommunity "counter
Dear friends,I just wanted to thank you all for the huge response you gave to my appeal yesterday. Not only did donations come in as never before, you also gave me extremely valuable advice (in both public comments and private emails). You have also pointed out some mistakes I have made in the past which I shall not repeat again. In the very near future, I will write up a response and a plan for the future which I think you will be very happy with. Right now I need to deal with more urgent matters - including some possibly very serious developments in the Ukraine - but I just wanted to thank you all: the miracle of "spontaneous self-organization of people" has happened again and our community - you - are nothing short of absolutely fantastic!!Kindest regards and thanks to all,The SakerRussia must probe deaths and abductions in Crimea: rights group
By Alexei Anishchuk MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia must investigate the deaths and abductions of activists in Crimea who have opposed Moscow's annexation of the peninsula and ensure the rights of minorities and media are respected, a leading European human rights watchdog said on Monday. In a 16-page report, the Council of Europe's Commissioner for Human Rights Nils Muiznieks highlighted the cases of ...âGenocide Denialâ in Rwanda: Questioning the Official View of History
Late last week the Rwandan government banned BBC broadcasts in the central African country; a day earlier the Rwandan Parliament demanded the London-based BBC production team be criminally prosecuted for “genocide denial;” and, a week earlier 38 notables, including former…NEO â" What America is really threatening in Ukraine
- "Henry Kamens gives us one hell of an overview of the present Ukraine mess, which I have compared to the Tar Baby in the briar patch from Uncle Remus."Happy Black Thursday: Do Tumbling Buybacks Signal Another Market Crash?
âFrankly, we are so far off the economic rails, the locomotive is stuck in a swamp and the trailing cars are piling up around it.â Anonymous, Comments line, Naked Capitalism Since the end of the recession in 2009, investors have…Russia recognizes Ukraine poll despite violations, doubts
It is obvious that the Supreme Rada elections in Ukraine can be considered valid despite a rather harsh and dirty campaign, Russia’s deputy foreign minister has said. Via::NEO â" Are the Ukraine talks a NATO ploy?
- "Censored from Western media is the fact that the 'special status' for the New Republics recently passed by Kiev has a six month expiration date "Civil Asset Confiscation: The US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Can Now Seize Bank Accounts On Suspicion Alone
âHow can this happen?âÂ Ms. Hinders said in a recent interview.Â âWho takes your money before they prove that youâve done anything wrong with it?â The federal government does. *Â *Â * The topic ofÂ civil asset forfeitureÂ has been…Which logo do you prefer? (UPDATED!)
Dear friends, I need to decide which logo to use on the new blog. Which one do you prefer?Thanks,The Saker UPDATE: it just 'hit me' that we are a community, right? Okay - if you want to submit a logo of your own, please do. I make no promises to use it, but if I like it I will add it to the list of logos submitted for comments in this survey of opinions. Deal?Logo 1Logo 2Logo 3Logo 4Logo 5Logo 6Logo 7 Logo 8Logo 9Logo 10Logo 11Logo 12Logo 13Logo 14Logo 15Logo 16Vladimir Putin Is The Leader of the âMoral Worldâ: Confronts Washingtonâs âExtra
Vladimir Putinâs remarks at the 11th meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club are worth more than a link in my latest column. These are the remarks of a humanitarian political leader, the like of which the world has not…In Crimea, Many Signs Of Russia, Few Of Resistance
Russia's takeover of Crimea extends from the flags over government buildings to passports to the labels on wine bottles. Despite the international criticism, many Crimeans are happy to rejoin Moscow.Remarks by the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov at a joint press conference following â¦
Via:: Remarks by the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov at a joint press conference following …Pegasus Targets Freeh â" On Orders From The President
I have received a number of requests to verify the article below.As a former member of Pegasus, I do have contact with at least 3 active members. I also am well aware of Mr. Freeh and his previous activities in the DOJ. I have placed my remarks at the bottom of the article.Â A […]Major problems for me and this blog
Dear friends,As many of you have noticed, the new blog was down, now it is back up, but with a older version which is missing at least two posts and many comments. My fault, my bad. Now I need to fix it. I will. Still,To be honest, I am having major problems and, to be equally honest, I need you guys to help me. I am too tired right now to go into all the details, and I am waiting to hear from my IT volunteers, but I will write up a major announcement tomorrow where I will do a "state of the community" overview, list the problems that I am having, and ask for both help and suggestions as to how to address these problems.A good friend whom you know under a alias wrote to me tonight "Keep the Blogger site going and don't crack up over the new version. We can fix everything except you." He also made a couple of very intelligent suggestions. Okay, I will call upon you all to help out since, after all, this is as much your blog, space and community as it is mine."See you" all tomorrow, kind regards,The SakerPresident Putinâs Address to Russian Diplomats (in English)
President Putin is a man of his words. He writes his own speeches and their content tells you what he thinks about Russia and its relationship to other nations. That's why it is well worth to pay attention to his words in this speech ... Download (PDF, 197KB)NEO â" Ukrainian Elections: EU Membership May be a Mirage
- The Ukraine coup continues to be a zoo, and continued failure will be nothing new. Its Western backers will continue their takeover of another struggling countrySpeech by Putin to Russian Lawmakers about Crimean Referendum
Historical speech by President Putin to Russian lawmakers March 18 2014 about the referendum in Crimea and the acceptance of Crimea into the Russian Federation. I remember being in Moscow listening to the direct transmission of this historical speech by president Putin. Even if I am not Russian, I couldn’t help to feel how this […]NEO â" Gunnar
- Ulson Gunnar - Warplanes, helicopter gunships, heavy armor and troops poured into eastern Ukraine in a blitzkrieg offensive after the show elections.Vladimir Putin Exposes Criminal Global Order: âThe US is its Own Worst Enemyâ
Russian President Vladimir Putin, before an international audience,Â exposed an international orderÂ capitalizing on the end of the Cold War to reshape the world according to its own interests, sidelining concepts such as basic international relations, international laws, systems of…Russia turns back clocks to permanent Winter Time
Russia on Sunday is set to turn back its clocks to winter time permanently in a move backed by President Vladimir Putin, reversing a three-year experiment with non-stop summer time that proved highly unpopular. Russia will also tinker with its time zones in order to revert to the full 11 zones from Kamchatka in the Pacific to Kaliningrad on the borders of the European Union reduced to nine by ...New Rules or a Game without Rules: Ã¢ÂÂWe Need a New Global Consensus of Responsible PowersÃ¢ÂÂ. Vladimir Putin
US War on Iran Takes Bizarre Turn. US Covert Support to Mujahedeen It is not mrly hyprbol whn it is said th US cratd trrorist organizations lik Al Qada or th so-calld “Islamic Stat.” It is documntd fact. Th currnt conflict in th Middl ast may appar to b a chaotic conflagration… NEO Ã¢ÂÂ" Gunnar...Russia still has troops in Ukraine, NATO says
By Adrian Croft MONS Belgium (Reuters) - Russia still has troops in eastern Ukraine and retains a very capable force on the border despite a partial withdrawal, NATO's military commander said on Friday. "We've seen a pretty good withdrawal of the Russian forces from inside Ukraine but, make no mistake, there remain Russian forces inside eastern Ukraine," U.S. Air Force General Philip Breedlove ...NEO â" Planet Earth âdone inâ by False Flags
- Seth Ferris is doing a wonderful job at showing us how some of the nasty things our government does, that they know we would never approve of.Russia recognizes Ukraine poll despite violations, doubts
It is obvious that the Supreme Rada elections in Ukraine can be considered valid despite a rather harsh and dirty campaign, Russia’s deputy foreign minister has said. Via::Silencing Dissent: US Political Prisoners Mumia Abu
Recently, two cases concerning the constitutional rights of people in prison came to public light. They involve two U.S. political prisoners: Mumia Abu-Jamal who is serving a life sentence at a facility in Frackville, Pennsylvania and Jeremy Hammond, who is…Rightwing Groups Muscle in on Ukraine Election
This article originally appeared in Financial Times Rightwing Ukrainian political parties supplied much-needed muscle during anti-government protests on Kiev’s Maidan square earlier this year. A question looming over Sunday’s national elections is whether those parties â" dismissed by pro-Russia forces as âfascistâ extremists â" will now enter parliament. Via:: Rightwing Groups Muscle in on Ukraine...Surgeons in East Ukraine Confirm Cluster Bomb Usage
DONETSK, 21 October 2014 (AFP) – Surgeons in east Ukraine’s rebel hub of Donetsk, where dozens of civilians have died in recent weeks, confirmed on Tuesday that some patients were victims of cluster bombs as alleged by Human Rights Watch. Although Kiev vehemently denied that its troops battling the pro-Russian insurgency in the east are...Why is there No Vaccine for Ebola?
The chief executive of the World Health Organization met with representatives of major drug manufacturers in Geneva Thursday to discuss efforts to develop a vaccine for the Ebola virus. The meeting took place as the number of confirmed victims of…Top Putin advisors and experts discuss economy, sanctions & central bank
Dear friends,There is no overstating the importance of the video and transcript I am posting today. In a crucial moment of the confrontation between the AngloZionist Empire and Russia, two top Putin advisors - Sergei Glaziev and Mikhail Khazin - openly and very candidly discuss the "economic front" of this global war. Both of these man are top level economists, both of them have a first hand and truly immense knowledge of the real state of affairs of the Russian state and Russian economy, and both have "Putin's ear" (they - not Dugin - are his close advisors). Last but not least, Khazin and Glaziev are firmly in the "Eurasian Sovereignist" camp and are therefore hated by the "Atlantic Integrationist" 5th column.One more thing: yesterday I published a manifesto by Strelkov whom I described as an "iconic symbol and spokesman for the "Eurasian Sovereignist" camp". This is true as far as the Russian people are concerned. But Strelkov has no access to the high spheres of power and he is not privy to the internal Kremlin politics. Strelkov has the potential to play an important role because the real power base of Putin and the "Eurasian Sovereignists" is what we could call "the Russian street" - the people of Russia (in contrast to the real power base of the Atlantic Integrationists who are the Russian liberal money elites). But Strelkov will never be part of any move to re-gain control of the Russian Central Bank or to change the interest rates charged to Russian businesses. Khazin and, especially, Glaziev will.My intention with these publications is to give you, my readers, a "behind the scenes" or "not for western audiences" kind of access and insight into the very real war taking place inside Russia. At a time when so many putatively pro-Russian bloggers present a crude and primitive "shoulda coulda woulda" model with on one side heroic good guys and on the other villains and traitors I want you to be able to see the extreme complexity and intensity of the internal war taking place inside Russia for the future of Russia. Once you do that, then the apparent zig-zags of Russian policies in Novorussia will begin to make sense to you and you will be able to distinguish real Russian patriots (those who struggle to free Russia from the AngloZionist domination) from the fake ones (those who always find a way to criticize the former ones but never do anything useful themselves).Sorry for that long introduction, but I am so exited to finally be able to share these important documents with you that I wanted to explain why I consider them so important.A few technical points now:1) There is a nasty little outfit out there trying to have this video removed from YouTube on "copyright grounds". I urge you to download it as soon as you can. Firefox users can do that with the "MP4 downloader", "DownloadHelper" and "DownThemAll" extensions. Please feel free to repost it anywhere you want (RuTube maybe?)2) By "popular demand" and because this is a most important document, I have made the full transcript available for download here (https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByibNV3SiUooUGFhejRCM2Q4bm5oWHVXTlpLY2dsazF4a2Vn/view?usp=sharing )Okay, that's here. On with the video now. Enjoy!!The Saker(please make sure to press the 'cc' button on the lower right to see the English subs!)[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CH4Pcgoi3eE?rel=0] Host:Vladimir Anatolievich (V.A)Guests:Sergey Glazyev (S.G)Khazin Mikhail Leonidovich (M.L)Vladimir Yuryevich Levchenko (V.Y)Credits: (A HUGE THANK YOU GUYS - YOU ALL REALLY ROCK!!)English Transcription & Translation by:VineyardSaker Video Team: Marina, GC, Katya, S, Gideon & Yulia Editing & Production: Marina & Augmented EtherRussia and China to sign cyber
Cooperation agreement will enable the two countries to conduct 'joint cyber-security operations', according to Russian press reportsS&P affirms Russia's sovereign rating a notch above junk
Standard & Poor's ratings agency affirmed Russia's sovereign rating on Friday at a notch above junk status, warning a downgrade may follow if more sanctions are imposed on Moscow for its role in the Ukrainian conflict. S&P also said another cut might come if Russia's monetary policy or exchange-rate flexibility weakens. It maintained a negative outlook on Russia. "The negative outlook reflects ...NEO â" True Heroes Behind the Kiev Ceasefire
- Jim W. Dean..."We need to make America's state sponsored terrorism a fall campaign issue on the Dems and Repubs doing the AIPAC Zombie walk on Ukraine."US War on Iran Takes Bizarre Turn. US Covert Support to Mujahedeen
It is not mrly hyprbol whn it is said th US cratd trrorist organizations lik Al Qada or th so-calld “Islamic Stat.” It is documntd fact. Th currnt conflict in th Middl ast may appar to b a chaotic conflagration…Histories of Illusion: Another Asian Century Beckons
It is an old debate on fictions. St. Augustine, in his lengthy and at times revealing scribbles, proposed that humans were placed on this earth for a purpose. Disappointing it must be to then discover that humans have no purpose…NEO â" Putin puts Ukraine gas payments on Europeâs back
- The Geo-political war going on over Ukraine has been short on bullets and bombs, and long with lies and disinformation.Is the Ebola Outbreak in West Africa a Biological Proxy War?
Russia announced that they have a vaccine effective against Ebola. FromÂ another report in Moscow Times it seems more like they have an effective drug to treat Ebola and not a really a vaccine. The investigative reporter Jon Rappoport (nomorefakenews.com), who have disclosed the fraud behind the HIV-virus and other frauds committed by the BIG PHARMA […]Sanctioned Russian Tycoon Launching Major TV News Network Based on Christian Values
This article originally appeared at The American Conservative Konstantin Malofeev, a devout Orthodox Christian, tsarist, and rich guy, has ideas about media, religion, and the culture war. Slate reports: Via::Alexander Mercouris: Deadlock and Gas Talks in Milan
Dear friends,It is a huge pleasure to announce today, specifically in response to the request of many of you, Alexander Mercouris has agreed to send me his his FaceBook analytical posts for posting here. I have a huge respect for Alexander and I am delighted to welcome him here as a regular contributor.The Saker-------by Alexander Mercouris Deadlock in MilanNews from the Milan summit is still trickling through but it is clear that there has been no breakthrough and the Ukrainian crisis remains deadlocked. Poroshenko said that the "parameters" of a gas agreement have been agreed but it seems that nothing of the sort has happened. The most fatuous comment of the day has come from van Rompuy, who called it "progress" because Putin is supposed to have said that he does not want a frozen conflict in Ukraine or for eastern Ukraine to become another Transdniestria. To see the absurdity of that comment just try to imagine Putin solemnly telling the Europeans the opposite: that he does want a frozen conflict in Ukraine and that he does want eastern Ukraine to become another Transdniestria! Not for the first time Putin comes over as a man surrounded by dwarfs. As I understand it the idea of a breakfast meeting between Putin and European leaders came from Merkel. With the German and European economies tanking in part because of the very sanctions policy she has imposed, Merkel needs this crisis to end. At the same time she remains utterly unwilling to take on the US and its European allies or the Atlanticists within Germany. She therefore looks to Putin to extricate her from the mess she has got herself into. However because she is not prepared to face up to the US and its allies or the Atlanticists she wants Putin to get her out of trouble by capitulating to all their demands. She tries to do this by applying "pressure" on Putin (that was what today's breakfast meeting was all about) and then looks sullenly angry and baffled when it doesn't work. Accustomed to bullying other European leaders and getting her way, it's as if Merkel, when faced by an adversary her own size, doesn't know what to do. She reminds me of Obama who came away similarly baffled and angry after facing off with Putin two years ago at a summit when they discussed the Syrian crisis. Meanwhile as the European and German economy tanks the Russian economy accelerates despite the falling oil price whilst the Ukraine's disintegration gathers pace. In politics and diplomacy as in war it is necessary to know when to retreat before the situation becomes a total rout. The Europeans show no such ability or understanding so we are looking at a rout. The Gas Talks in Milan More information is trickling out about the gas talks in Milan and they make for an ugly picture.Ever since June the Russians have been saying that the contractual price of gas supplied to the Ukraine is $485/1000 but that they are prepared to offer on a temporary basis a $100/1000 discount, bringing the price of gas supplied to the Ukraine this winter down to $385/1000, on condition that Ukraine pays its outstanding arrears and prepays for all gas actually supplied. The Russians have never wavered from this position. The Ukrainians have never wavered from rejecting it. As I understand it the Ukrainian position is that the "proper" price for Russian gas is the $269/1000 Yanukovitch achieved through the discounts he negotiated with Putin last December. The Ukrainians insist that all gas arrears should be recalculated on the basis of this price and that only when that happens will they consider paying them. In the interim, under European pressure, they have said they would agree to pay a higher price on a temporary basis (apparently $320/1000) until the dispute is settled. However they insist that any payments they make during the period of this price should be treated as payment for gas supplied according to this price and not payment of arrears.I am not going to discuss here in any detail the absurdity of the Ukrainian position, which treats a discounted price offered to Yanukovitch in return for conditions the Ukraine never fulfilled, as the "proper" price in substitution for the agreed contractual price. I don't think anyone apart from the Ukrainians believes in it. Certainly the Europeans don't. Anyway, returning to what happened in Milan, one of the great mysteries for me about Ukrainian politicians is that though in public they compete with each other in being tough on Russia, the moment they actually have to deal with Putin face to face over gas issues they come immediately apart and turn out to be spectacularly bad negotiators. We saw this happen with Tymoshenko in 2009 and we have just seen it happen again with Poroshenko in Milan.Briefly, earlier in the day Poroshenko said that the "parameters" of a gas deal with Russia had been agreed. This led to a brief flurry of hopeful claims and headlines including a statement from Hollande that the two sides had almost bridged their differences.It then turned out as the day progressed that the "parameters" Poroshenko was saying had been agreed with Russia were the same as the original Russian offer. In other words Poroshenko capitulated, perhaps without understanding, to what Putin asked of him.Putin even said that the only remaining outstanding issue was how the Ukraine would find the money to discharge the obligations it had just taken on. His suggestions amount to a proposal that the Europeans pay for the Ukraine's gas and arrears either directly or via a further IMF loan. This is something the Europeans by the way have always refused to do.Anyway, when it finally seems to have dawned on Poroshenko that the "parameters" he had agreed to were simply what the Russians have been demanding all along, his response was to flounce out of what looks like a hurriedly arranged meeting with Putin to announce that there had been no agreement after all. Putin for his part stuck to the Russian position and publicly declared that Russia would not supply the Ukraine with gas on credit (which is what the Ukrainian counter proposals amount to) and that "that was final".It appears therefore that we have deadlock with no actual progress made despite some of the earlier headlines that appeared during the day. Along the way Poroshenko has been made to look a fool in front of all the leaders of Europe and Asia and the gas talks on 21st October 2014 have just been made more difficult.Putin said just before he went to Milan that Russia would reduce the amount of gas pumped through the Ukraine if the Ukraine starts stealing gas destined for other customers. That is what Russia did in 2009 and I have no doubt it is what it will do again. Unless the Europeans now give Poroshenko an ultimatum to accept the Russian offer a total cut off looms.Surgeons in East Ukraine Confirm Kiev Used Cluster Bombs
by Alexander MercourisIt seems the German intelligence agency the BND has provided a Bundestag committee with a report that once again attributes the MH17 shoot down to the NAF.The report has not been published but for me the single most interesting thing in it is that it apparently finally demolishes the theory that MH17 was shot down by a BUK system secretly transferred to the NAF by the Russians. We are back it seems to the theory that the NAF shot down MH17 with a BUK missile system it captured from the Ukrainians.There are a number of points to make here:1. At the time when MH17 was shot down the western media were in full flood that the Russians were responsible. All sorts of stories circulated about how a BUK missile system was supposedly secretly smuggled by Russia across the border and supplied to the NAF, which the NAF then used to shoot MH17 down. These stories played a key role in influencing western public opinion against Russia. The Germans forced other EU states to impose sectoral sanctions on Russia on the grounds it was responsible for the tragedy because it was arming the NAF. The stories of a BUK missile system being secretly smuggled back and forth across the border (and films supposedly culled from social media supposedly showing it doing just that) undoubtedly played a part in giving credence to these claims. The BND has now admitted that the Russians were not involved in the shooting down of MH17 and that MH17 was not shot down by a BUK missile system smuggled by the Russians across the border. It turns out therefore that all those stores that gained so much attention and which did Russia's image so much harm were untrue. I wonder whether sectoral sanctions would have been imposed on Russia if it had been known then that those stories were untrue.2. By saying that MH17 was shot down by the NAF using a captured BUK missile system, the BND is contradicting what the junta said at the time and is still saying. The junta still denies that any of its BUK systems have been captured by the NAF. By contrast the BND now admits that what the Russians were saying in July - that they did not transfer a BUK system to the NAF and that they were not involved in the shooting down of MH17 - was true. 3. The BND has also apparently admitted that the "evidence" the junta produced supposedly culled from social media was fabricated or falsified. This is important because it is the first western admission of the fact that the junta has lied. Up to now no western government or agency has ever called into question anything the junta has ever said. Of course if the junta falsified or fabricated evidence about MH17 it might have done so about other matters (eg. the Kiev snipers or the Odessa fire). 4. There were some reports before the MH17 tragedy that the NAF had indeed captured a BUK missile system. It is difficult to say how credible those reports were. As I have previously said, given that the capture of such a system would have been a considerable coup, one might have expected the NAF to make more of the fact by publishing photographs of the BUK system they had captured. That however never happened. Absence of evidence is not necessarily evidence of absence but I would still like to see some convincing evidence that the NAF really did have a BUK missile system in its possession (and a crew able to operate it) before I accepted the fact. Uncorroborated claims denied then and since by the Ukrainians and made in the midst of an armed conflict when all sorts of exaggerated claims are made are not sufficient evidence and do not prove anything. In the absence of such evidence all I can do is note (1) that the NAF continues to deny that it had or was operating a BUK system when MH17 was shot down and (2) that no evidence exists or has been made public which refutes that denial. .5. The media reports about the BND report say that the BND has shown such evidence to the Bundestag committee and that supposedly it includes satellite imagery. The evidence has not however been made public and again one has to ask why? It is scarcely believable that there is something so secret about the way this evidence was collected that prevents it from being made public. The Russians and the Chinese certainly know everything there is to know about how the western powers collect imagery and other intelligence from their satellites. It is not as if publishing this evidence is therefore going to compromise any intelligence source or capability. Why then the secrecy especially over an issue of such importance? Whether the western powers want to admit to the fact or not, their refusal to make their evidence public casts doubt on how much weight this evidence really has.6. In the absence of publication of this evidence (which would allow it to be properly examined and tested) it remains impossible to accept any claims based on it. There have just been too many cases of western intelligence agencies assuring us on the basis of "evidence" kept secret of the truth of things that turned out to be false. Recent examples include the false claims made by all western intelligence agencies including the BND about Saddam Hussein's non-existent weapons of mass destruction, the wrong claims of massive Russian slush funds hidden away in Cyprus, which actually originated with the BND, and the denials last year made by all western intelligence agencies including the BND that the Syrian rebels have used sarin gas, which a UN report has since admitted they almost certainly have. 7. There is one point about MH17 I do however wish to make. On balance and despite the fact that the body of one of the passengers was found wearing an oxygen mask, I still think the most likely explanation for the tragedy is that MH17 was shot down by a BUK missile. I realise others (eg, Petri Kohn) disagree. I am not technically qualified to decide the question. I am however concerned that some people are trying to reduce this issue to a false binary of SU25=junta versus BUK=NAF. That is precisely what the BBC for example sought to do in a recent Panorama programme. The attraction of insisting that MH17 was shot down by a SU25 is that in that case only the junta could have done it since no one says the NAF had an operational SU25 capable of shooting MH17 down. The danger of insisting that MH17 was shot down by an SU25 is that if it does turn out that MH17 was in fact actually shot down by a BUK missile, then some in the west will treat that as proof that it was the NAF that shot it down. It is nothing of the sort. It cannot be said too strongly that as of now there is no proof that at the time when MH17 was shot down the NAF was in possession of either an operational SU25 aircraft or an operational BUK system, whereas there is conclusive proof that the junta was in possession of both. Until the BND or some other western intelligence makes evidence public that proves the contrary that remains the position.