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Revisiting Litvinenko, What Really Happened?

By Ryan Dawson | ANTI-neocon Report | April 26, 2015

As we all know Alexander Litvinenko was poisoned by polonium, a rare radioactive substance. The main narrative blamed it all on Vladimir Putin of Russia. The rationale rested on little other than because Litvinenko was a Putin critic. This was the quick line in mass media, and it was on all the typical war propaganda channels. Thanks in large part to Alexander Goldfarb, a stooge of exiled oligarch Boris Berezovskiy, having twisted the tale of the poisoning into a ‘Putin did it’ cover up for a botched smuggling operation, by declaring this was Litvinenko’s belief, expressed in a death bed letter that he allegedly signed. Really? And he wanted you, Goldfarb, a biologist who worked for the Oligarch, not a lawyer, to witness this letter and read it to the media? Why were you even there? Akhmed Zakayev thought Goldfarb was CIA.

There are many things wrong with the “Putin did it” story. For one, there is no motive, even with Litvinenko being a critic of Russia, he was no threat whatsoever to Putin. The man worked with Chechen terrorists and the Israeli-Russian oligarchs. But assuming that there was a sufficient motive to kill him, think about this: Why would Russia use a very rare, very expensive, and easily traceable radioactive substance to kill him instead of some cheap poison or just shooting him? Why risk smuggling radioactive material into the UK which is an act of war? And why poison someone on the same day Britain signed an accord to make it easier for Russia to extradite high profile criminals.  London has become a central hub for asylum-seeking Russians. The UK has not extradited a single person to face Russian court. Many oligarchs fled to the US and Israel because of their non-extradition status. Israeli-Russian Boris Berezovsky, the former oligarch and media owner, and Ahmed Zakayev, the Chechen leader who was arrested in the UK, got a 50,000GPB bail paid and then got political asylum both landed in Britain.

Yet this murder by radioactive poison scandal is exactly what the UK/US media would have you believe. They want to say that Putin had someone sneak into the UK with polonium and poison Litvinenko with it. It just isn’t plausible. It’s actually absurd. Why would the American media side with the man who worked for terrorists and who worked for one of the exiled oligarchs? Well first off these “Russian” oligarchs are primarily Zionist Israeli-Russians who acquired much of their wealth and techniques from the Israeli Mossad agent Marc Rich. Secondly they have business relationships with the Bush administration. The Israeli-Russian Oligarch Khodorkosky had dealings with Cheney, the Carlyle group, and with UNACOL. Boris Berezovsky is a business partner with none other than President Bush’s brother Neil Bush. Boris invests in Neil’s Ignite! computer software, and Neil Bush met with Boris even after he was a known felon. One of the most wealthy Oligarchs used to be Oligarch Khdorkovsky of Yukos oil. He was worth over 15 billion dollars rivaling Roman Abramovich the richest of them all. Khodorkosky was buying votes in the Duma. Putin cracked down on the oligarchs forcing many to flee and arresting and throwing Khodorkosky in jail. He recently just had further charges placed on him to make his stay in jail all that much longer. 

The Khodorkovsky arrest followed an unpublicized meeting earlier that year on July 14, 2003, between Khodorkovsky and Cheney. Following the Cheney meeting, Khodorkovsky began talks with ExxonMobil and ChevronTexaco, Rice’s old firm, about taking a major state in Yukos, said to have been between 25% and 40% –source

The Washington Post reported “Days before his October 2003 arrest on tax fraud charges, Khodorkovsky had entertained George H W Bush, the representative of the powerful and secretive Washington Carlyle Group in Moscow. They were discussing the final details of the US oil company share buy-in of Yukos…

Yukos had also just made a bid to acquire rival Sibneft from Boris Berezovsky, another Yeltsin-era oligarch. YukosSibneft, with 19.5 billion barrels of oil and gas, would then own the second-largest oil and gas reserves in the world after ExxonMobil.”

YukosSibneft would be the fourth-largest in the world in terms of production, pumping 2.3 million barrels of crude oil a day. The Exxon or Chevron buy-up of YukosSibneft would have been a literal energy coup d’etat. Cheney knew it; Bush knew it; Khodorkovsky knew it. Above all, Putin knew it and moved decisively to block it.- William Engdhal 

Sibneft’s Boris Berezovsky just so happens to be the Israeli-Russian oligarch who lives in London who Litvineko worked for. Alexander Litvinenko who was formerly FSB fled to the UK to avoid court prosecution in Russia, worked for a shady Russian oligarch, Boris Berezovsky. Boris Berezovsky just so happens to be the Israeli-Russian oligarch who lived in London after fleeing the Russian judicial system for a multitude of crimes too long to list. He was on Interpol’s most wanted list. Here is the grand prize. After the US and UK press branded Putin with the poisoning despite there being Zero evidence, (something the US is very well known for now) investigators were tracking down the traces of Polonium in the UK. They detected traces of Polonium at Berezovsky’s office and residence! Now I do not know about you, but in my place of work, and certainly in my house, I do not have rare radioactive substances. Polonium is not something you just get at the market or pick up by accident walking through the park.

No experienced mob boss like Berezovsky would be dumb enough to murder an underling in such a manner either. Therefore his death was an accident. It was mostly likely it was a botched smuggling operation. Why was he moving such a dangerous substance? Did he need fast cash? Were they planning to create a dirty bomb? Such a “smoky bomb” would turn the Polonium into powder and kill anyone who ingested it.

Traces of Polonium were found on the planes that Litvinenko had been on. So I think we can deduce what happened. He was a mule. The questions remain, why did he have it?, Where did he get it? What was he going to do with it? Why was it in the offices of Berezovsky and Erinsys Ltd (Britain’s Blackwater)?

The “Putin did it” smear case has never made sense. First of all, the amount of polonium 210 in play would have cost millions of dollars. That amount is too expensive to purchase and too large to go unnoticed if it were stolen. The only way to obtain such a quantity would be on a well organized black market that had a connection to a nuclear facility. It would certainly help organized crime if the nuclear powered supplier they received the Polonium from was not subjected to international inspections or part of the nuclear nonproliferation treaty. Such a country, (Foreign country A) which denied they even built nuclear weapons for decades, would certainly also deny selling their Polonium byproduct as well.

Is it possible to hide that from the press? Yes. The media would ignore this for the same reason the media ignores them stealing nuclear secrets and building hundreds of nuclear weapons in Dimona, then throwing whistle blowers who took pictures of their warheads, in jail.

Litvinenko was in Israel, where he met Leonid Nevzlin the CEO of Yukos shortly before he died. If you wanted to buy/steal radioactive material that would be the place. What was he negotiating with Nevzlin? We learned Alexander had been an informant in a case that led to the arrest of nine Georgina and Russian Mobsters in Spain, including Alexander Gofstein a lawyer for Yukos who apparently was laundering money.

The downfall began when Georgina Mob Boss Zakhar Kalashov was arrested in May 2006. The scam was similar to what the old Five Families of New York had done, when guys like Meyer Lansky took profits from illegal gambling businesses and funneled them into buying up real estate in Florida. In the European case, the mob was taking illegal funds and buying up real estate in Spain as well as making investments into legitimate businesses.

Litivnenko’s associates, Dmitry Kovtun and Andrei Lugovoi, who both had met with him the day of the poisoning, were also both hospitalized. They left traces of Polonium in Hamburg as they had taken the trip to Germany before meeting Litvinenko. It appears all three were involved in a smuggling operation, but for who?

Short answer: Russian Oligarch Boris Berezovsky’s employee Alexander Litvinenko died from over exposure to Polonium in a botched smuggling operation. That is why traces of it were at Boris’s house and on the planes Litvinenko was riding to and from Israel. The smear on Putin/Russia using a highly traceable 10 million dollar poison to kill a critic is about as plausible and rational as saying we have “British Intelligence” about Niger…. This transparent bogus lie was a quick and shamelessly sloppy explanation to cover up how and why this man in the UK had a radioactive poison in his body. Polonium only has a half life of 138 days.

Litvinenko had been in Israel to visit Yukos’s CEO, just shortly before he died. And it’s an open secret that Israel has nuclear weapons, the only place without nuclear safeguard or inspections. Traces of polonium were also on the British Airway planes that Litvinenko took to and from Israel. So it they would have the means, location, and the timing fits, but let’s just blame, Putin “The New Hitler” as Neocons have dubbed him?

Why the fuss about a conspiracy claiming that Putin put Litvinenko on a hitlist and poisoned him? Well as wacky as that story is, it was probably the best they could come up with on short notice. Boris knew once the police found out how Litvinenko died that there would be a lot of explaining to do. He also knew that if the investigation went forward that they could find more of this Polonium on his properties. So they just claimed the KGB was trying to kill them all.

Some History

This is not the first time that Berezovsky tried to pin a murder on someone else and claim that all the damning evidence pointing to him was a frame. There are the notorious cases (in Russia) of Ivan Litskevich and Vlad Listyev.

Ivan Listkevich was the general director of the Omsk oil Refinery easily the best refinery in Russia. Abramovich and Berezovsky planned to take over the refinery and make it part of Berezovsky’s Sibnef (which it now is). Listkevich resisted. Ivan had outside investments from LUKoil (10% of the stock) and CS First Boston. So in no way was he threatened to sink. Omsk was in the best location, had the latest equipment, and was well positioned to continue to soar. They serviced the biggest oil producers in Russia. Naturally Ivan did not want to be swallowed by Sibnef. On August 19, 1995 Ivan was found drowned in the Irtysh River. I doubt he went there to swim. Five days later Sibnef (Gazprom) took over. August 24th 1995, using his good buddy Yeltson, Berezovsky got a Presidential Decree №872, to order a transfer of all the state’s share in Omsk as well as 4 other companies to Sibnef. Then in 1996 Boris and Roman privatized Sibnef through a series of Loans-for-Shares’ auctions which were a complete scam run through front companies and offshore banks. Yeltsin approved of it.

The case may leave doubts in the mind until one learns about the murder of Vlad Listyev. In 1994 Boris attacked one of his rivals over control of a media outlet. Part of the attack was broadcast all over TV and came to be known as “faces in the snow” as Boris’s rival’s bodyguard were forced at gun point to lie face down in the snow. Shortly after a 90mph high speed chase and attacking rival Gusinsky’s MOST guards and pinning Gusinsky in his own building, Berezovsky would take control of ORT (channel 1) through an illegal non-public “auction” and gain a near media monopoly.

For details on that I recommend reading “God Father of the Kremlin” if you can still find it. It was written by the senior editor of Forbes in Russia who holds a Ph.D in Russian history Paul Klebnikov. For the record Paul Klebnikov was killed after publishing his book on the Oligarchs, particularly on Boris, who is on the cover. He was shot four times in Moscow while leaving work and then died in the hospital after getting stuck on an elevator.

After the Gusinsky event, Boris had another problem. Vladislav Listyev. Listyev was probably the most popular talk show host in Russia and a TV producer. He was a business partner with Boris but the problem was he was not crooked. As general director of ORT he decided to fix a multi-million dollar leak in the company and in direct way of Boris paying people off in the Mob to do dirty work, as well as paying himself by spending money for ads in other companies he owned where he also ran the advertising sales. He had an offer from Sergei Lisovsky to buy up the sector. Negotiations never went through and Vlad had a different idea.

On Feb 20th 1995 Vlad announced that he would break the monopoly of Boris and Sergei. He called for a moratorium on ORT advertising until they could work out ethical standards. As you can imagine that did not make Boris or the rest of the mob happy. Eight days later Boris personally met with “Nikolai” a mafia boss, and handed him a hundred thousand dollars in cash. This was witnessed by two police officers who were monitoring the Mob. Prior to that Boris’s lacky Badri offered money to a different gangster but that man was arrested before he could do what was asked of him and he confessed this in jail. On March 1st the day after Berezovsky paid a second Mob Boss, Vlad Listyev was shot in the back at the entrance of his home.

Guilty as sin, with a confession against Badri as well as being personally witnessed by two police, offering another mob boss money, Boris was desperate. He was inches away from being arrested. Boris’s TV network was cut out of government subsidies after the police raided it and it was subject to bankruptcy. Fellow Media giant and friend Ruppert Murdoch promised to invest in the network and bail him out. How nice. And we all know where Murdoch stands. This relationship might also explain why Fox News and Sky News in the UK were so blatantly cheerleading the “Putin killed Litvinenko” conspiracy story.

But here is the real kicker. It is just as outrageous and far fetched as the Litvinenko poisoning. Boris concocted a story for Yeltsin which was recorded on video tape produced by Irina Lesnevskaya a producer at ORT and a friend of Yeltsin’s wife. The tape claimed that it was all a big conspiracy against Berezovsky and that the real culprit (who had no motive other than to frame Boris [apparently able to hire a gun to kill Vlad but not Boris?) was none other than bitter rival Gusinsky of Most Bank who Boris had already tried to kill once.

Yeltsin was paranoid of Gusinsky’s political ambitions and Boris knew this. Boris also blamed X-KGB and said Vlad was killed by the MOST group, and not the mob he was witnessed meeting with a week after Vlad was going to break his monopoly. (Sounds like “Iraq moved the nonexistent WMDs to Syria just to make the US look bad.” give me a break) Boris claimed to be set up because he was loyal to Yeltsin as was his new media outlet.

Yeltsin ever a partner in cover ups, not to mention a drunk and a thief, got Boris out of trouble once again by firing the lead investigators in the case which intimidated others to drop it. There was a huge public outcry. A TV personality had been killed. ORT created a new company called ORT advertising with a monopoly to sell ads on commission no less, and the boss-man chosen was none other than Sergei Lisovsky. Wow how utterly shameless.

If you can speak Russian or if you can find an English copy of the Boris/Lesnevskaya tape transcript sent to Yeltsin, it’s going to make you very angry. It is about as plausible as saying Putin risked an act of war with the UK to kill a critic who worked for both a criminal as well as terrorist.

Who Done It?

So we know what didn’t happen. But there still remains a “who done it.” The quickest way to get to the bottom of this is to see who is lying the most and loudest, because that is usually who has the most to hide.

Remember Anna Politkovskaya? She was killed on Putin’s birthday and the alternative press and the ‘mindlessly accepting any conspiracy’ types who fell for it, tried to use that circumstantial “evidence” to blame the murder on Putin.

These are the same types that claim Russia bombed its own apartment buildings to start a war with Chechnya omitting the fact that the apartment bombing took place five months after the war has already started, and the “sources” trying to blame the FSB were none other than Boris’s lacky Litvinenko and well known plagiarist David Satter, who wrote for the PNAC co-founders’ Weekly Standard, which gave the world all the bogus lies about Iraq’s WMD and connection to the September 11th attacks. Robert Kagan, the paper’s cofounder with William Kristol, wrote an op-ed in the Washington Times calling “Speaking of Iraq” which pushes every erroneous prewar scare tactic there was. His wife Victoria Nuland is the same woman who was recorded on the phone saying “F” the EU and openly talking about who would be a good replacement Prime Minister in Ukraine. She chose Arseniy Yatseniuk, who she called “Yatz” and he did become the prime minister of Ukraine a month later after the coup. Everything out of this faction’s mouth has been blindly anti-Russian.

There is a huge difference between conspiracy and kookspiracy. Getting away from the outlandish unsubstantiated claims about Anna’s death, let’s uncover something factual. Anna Politkovskaya was the journalist who had published three different articles on how SOMEONE was testing Polonium on Chechen children. Gee! Where have we seen THAT scenario before? Anna’s articles were published in the Novaya Gazeta in 2006 and she was killed October of that same year.

The Washington Post then makes this clever claim. “Leonid Nevzlin, a former Yukos oil company shareholder and Russian exile currently living in Israel, told the Associated Press in late November that Litvinenko had given him a document related to a dossier on criminal charges made by Russian prosecutors against people connected to Yukos. Nevzlin, who is charged by Russian prosecutors with having organized killings, fraud and tax evasion, claimed Litvinenko’s inquiries may have provided a motive for his poisoning”

Notice who else is in that Washington Post article (Scaramella) and who was planting the ideas that Putin had killed both Litvinenko and Anna. How crazy is that to use polonium to murder someone… Scaramella is a rotten one. After Anna’s lawyer Stanislav Markelov was murdered in 2009 followed by the murder of one of her key informants in Chechnya, Natalia Estemirova, the same year, there was a retrial in Anna’s case which went to the Supreme Court. Chechen president Ramzan Kadyrov stirred up a public disgust when he said about Anna’s informant Natalia Estemirova on Radio Liberty “She was a woman… who had never possessed any honor, dignity or conscience.”

The prosecution cornered Dmitry Pavliutchenkov a former policeman who in turn confessed Lom-Ali Gaitukayev was who negotiated the contract killing and behind him he suspected Boris Berezovsky. Dmitry was sentenced to 11 years in jail. Five men were found guilty in her murder. Three were the Chechen brothers who had been acquitted in the first trial and they went to prison. Rustam Makhmudov and Lom-Ali Gaitukayev got life sentences in 2014. Berevsovsky had died the year before in March of 2013.

They were already testing the poison on Chechens and killed the journalist uncovering the story. Lit overdosed by accident and the Oligarchs had to quickly create a story to explain how it is possible such a shady character had any contact with this stuff. So they do what they did before, blame it on a conspiracy of Boris’s enemies even when there is no motive, no evidence and not even simple logic to it.

The most troubling thing here is not that the mob did something illegal or that the Western press jumped the gun to do an anti-Russian witch hunt. All of that is pretty run of the mill. It’s not even that Israel secretly has nukes and is involved with organized crime. Again, imagine my lack of shock. It’s not even the multiple murders that are most troubling. The most troubling part of this story is what the ultimate purpose of that much Polonium was and why it was in the UK. The potential for a dirty bomb is enormous. With the current climate of ISIS and disgruntled youth in Europe joining the mercenary forces to fight Israel’s enemies in Syria and Lebanon, a dirty bomb in the UK is not an unimaginable scenario. Just having such a thing could also hold leverage over politicians there too. The source of the Polonium should have been traced and potential sources should also be subject to inspection.

July 1, 2018 Posted by | Corruption, Deception, Fake News, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

Bill Kristol Has Always Wanted to Rape Iran

By Caitlin Johnstone | American Herald Tribune | July 1, 2018

One year after the CIA escalated covert operations in Iran, the protests across that nation are reportedly beginning to get more violent. This is happening on the same day the Iranian terror cult MEK hosted Rudolph Giuliani and Newt Gingrich in a pro-regime change rally that was so sparsely attended that half the audience consisted of bused-in Europeans unaffiliated with the cause.

“We are now realistically being able to see an end to the regime in Iran,” said Giuliani, who earlier this year infamously led a “Regime change! Regime change!” chant at a related MEK event.

“The Mullahs must go, the Ayatollah must go, and they must be replaced by a democratic government which Madam Rajavi represents,” Giuliani said in reference to MEK cult leader Maryam Rajavi.

“Freedom is right around the corner,” added Giuliani, who is currently serving as President Trump’s lawyer. “Next year I want to have this convention in Tehran!”

So things appear to be escalating. We saw very similar situations in the lead-up to both Libya and Syria, right up to and including the shady ties with the suspiciously well-funded extremist group. We can expect the CIA operations, propaganda and psyops to combine with the effects of starvation sanctions in a way which leads to widespread chaos, which we can expect to see erupt into violence of disputed origin, which we can then expect to see blamed solely on Tehran, which we can then expect to see elicit calls for humanitarian interventionism. Just like Libya and Syria. If the formula ain’t broke, why fix it?

And the bloodthirsty warmongers of Washington couldn’t be more thrilled.

“A democratic Iran not only would free Iranians from repressive theocracy but produce closer ties between our two countries; real security, economic , and moral benefits for both Iranians and Americans,” contributed Michael McFaul, an ambassador to Russia during the Obama administration.

“Very true,” tweeted Iraq war architect and PNAC founder William Kristol. “And great to see a bipartisan consensus for regime change in Iran! (It would be happily ironic if, totally inadvertently, tough sanctions followed by the JCPOA followed by withdrawal from the deal caused so much whiplash that the regime crumbled.)”

The word “bipartisan” is a popular buzzword in establishment politics, because since the two-headed uniparty has worked so hard creating the illusion of opposition among its leaders and very real hatred across America’s fake political divide, the sight of these two groups getting together on something can be spun to give the impression that it must be a very commonsense and important pro-human agenda. Really, though, what it generally means in practice is neoconservative Republicans and neoconservative Democrats getting together to do something horrible.

Bill Kristol used his influence in the Bush administration to advance the agenda that his Project for the New American Century think tank had laid out several years earlier for US military-enforced planetary domination. It began with the catastrophic and unforgivable invasion of Iraq, but according to US General Wesley Clark the plan once if got through to the Pentagon was to take out six more governments after that: Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and, finishing off, Iran.

Kristol lost some credibility as the actual horror of what the Iraq invasion had unleashed upon the world began to really sink in to social consciousness, but since 2016 he has rehabilitated his image by forming a close anti-Trump alliance with the birthplace of neoconservatism: the Democratic Party. Kristol is now one of #Resistance Twitter’s most popular pundits and a regular guest analyst on liberal cable TV due to his staunch support for neoconservative policies that this administration claims to oppose, including escalations against Russia.

Bill Kristol wants to rape Iran. Bill Kristol has always wanted to rape Iran. Bill Kristol has advocated disastrous regime change intervention after disastrous regime change intervention throughout his entire corrupt, blood-soaked career, and he has always been wrong. Every single time. If the regime change cheerleading of this virulent Never-Trump neoconservative failmeister doesn’t tell Trump supporters that they’re on the wrong side of this issue, I don’t know what will.

July 1, 2018 Posted by | Wars for Israel | , , , , , | 2 Comments

UK Warplanes Bomb Pro-Government Forces in Syria After Attack by ‘Unidentified Force’

Sputnik – July 1, 2018

The Royal Air Force strike on Syrian troops is the first of its kind since April, when the US, UK and France launched missile strikes against multiple targets in the Arab republic after an alleged chemical attack in Douma.

A Ministry of Defense spokesman confirmed that the RAF attack had taken place, and said that a group of anti-Damascus Maghawir al-Thowra opposition militia and coalition “advisers” were attacked by an “unidentified force” outside the al-Tanf base on June 21, prompting the RAF response.

“As an act of collective self-defense, RAF Typhoons dropped a single Paveway IV on the position, which successfully removed the threat to our coalition partners,” the spokesman said. “There was no need to inform Parliament of this action… only in the event that civilian casualties have resulted from a RAF strike would the [defense secretary] inform parliament of events,” he added.

The MOD refused to comment on the identity of the force attacked, but called the bombing a “wholly proportionate response.” According to the Sunday Times, the airstrike killed one Syrian Army officer and wounded seven others. Damascus has yet to comment on the reported casualties.

British and US Special Forces troops and trainers deployed in southern Syria in 2016 and have been engaged in the training of anti-government militia. Damascus has repeatedly demanded that the coalition end its “illegal presence” in the country. Damascus and Moscow have also accused the coalition of “spewing Daesh mobile groups” from the region.

The US-led coalition has carried out a campaign of airstrikes ostensibly aimed against Daesh since 2014. The coalition has no UN mandate or authorization from Damascus, and the Syrian government has called its activities a violation of its sovereignty. The US and its allies have repeatedly targeted Syrian government troops, most recently in April, where in response to an alleged chemical attack in Douma, they launched over 100 cruise missiles at government-controlled cities and facilities. Syria and its Russian and Iranian partners called the Douma ‘attack’ a false-flag operation designed to justify new attacks on Syria.

July 1, 2018 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, War Crimes | , | 1 Comment

The New York Times Squares off with the Truth, Again

By Michael Howard | American Herald Tribune | July 1, 2018

Whenever I’m having a rough day and need a pick-me-up, I turn to The New York Times’ editorial page. It’s always a gas to see how far the empire’s leading propaganda outfit is prepared to go in its mission to pull the wool over we the people’s gullible little eyes. The good editors have come through for me again with their latest entry, “Trump and Putin’s Too-Friendly Summit.” (Original title: “Trump and Putin: Best Frenemies for Life”). No doubt the original headline was deemed rather too impish for such a serious newspaper—it might, for instance, have alerted readers to the fact that the editorial’s content is not to be taken very seriously—and so was understandably jettisoned.

“One would think,” the editors write, “that the president of the United States would let Mr. Putin know that he faces a united front of Mr. Trump and his fellow NATO leaders, with whom he would have met days before the [Putin] summit in Helsinki.” Alas, during said meeting Trump reportedly remarked that “NATO is as bad as NAFTA”—the “free trade” agreement that has succeeded in decimating most of the manufacturing jobs spared by the automation wrecking ball. In other words, Trump does not necessarily think it’s a good idea to encircle Russia with a hostile military alliance whose existence, according to geopolitical expert Richard Sakwa, is “justified by the need to manage the security threats provoked by its enlargement.” (If you haven’t read Professor Sakwa’s comprehensive study of the Ukrainian crisis, Frontline Ukraine, put it at the top of your summer reading list.)

One notes the Turgidsonian delight with which the Times reminds us that, should push come to shove, we’ve got those Russki bastards outgunned. Of course, gullibles like you and I are to pay no mind to the fact that such a confrontation (a military one, for the Times brought up NATO) would almost certainly involve a nuclear exchange, rendering the disparity in manpower that so excites the Times totally meaningless. No, what’s important is that NATO has twenty-nine member states and counting, while the Warsaw Pact was dissolved twenty-seven years ago: ergo, unless he wants the old mailed fist, Putin had better ask “how high?” when we tell him to jump. One would be hard-pressed to come up with a more delusional assessment of where things stand.

In case any of its readers have been living under rocks (not so bad an idea in this day and age), the Times made sure to stress just how sinister “the Russian autocrat” is. To that end they touch upon, with signature glibness, “Mr. Putin’s seizure of Crimea and attack on Ukraine.” Later, the “attack on Ukraine” is upgraded to “the Ukraine invasion”—a charge dealt with most eloquently here. Omitted as a matter of course is Crimea’s complicated history, the issue of the Sevastopol naval bases, as well as numerous uncontroversial polls showing that the overwhelming majority of Crimeans (of whom an overwhelming majority are ethnic Russians) support “Mr. Putin’s seizure.”

According to Forbes, a February 2015 survey by German polling firm GfK asked of the Crimean population: “Do you endorse Russia’s annexation of Crimea?” Eighty-two percent responded: “yes, definitely.” On the other hand, a whopping two percent responded: “no.” Seems plain enough. But hold the phone, says the New Cold Warrior, we can’t rule out the possibility that GfK is actually an arm of Putin’s Federal Security Service. Can you prove it isn’t? Didn’t think so.

Failing that, I think I recall reading something somewhere about an international principle called … what was it again? … “self-determination.” That’s it. Something to do with the bloody dismemberment of a certain former country in the Balkans in the nineties, spearheaded by our very own Uncle Sam. It’ll come back to me.

Deployed next by our great pandering Paper of Record are the increasingly monotonous claims that Moscow “interfered in the 2016 election to put [Trump] in office and is continuing to undermine American democracy.” If only we had a democracy to undermine, then this never-ending soap opera might have a little more going for it. Having, wisely, I think, adopted a wake-me-up-when-it’s-over attitude to “Russia-gate,” I’m simply not up to speed on the latest pseudo-bombshell reports that, on account of their utter want of journalistic merit, wind up being heavily redacted or retracted altogether. The whole scene has become too farcical for my taste. That said, I encourage still-interested parties to read the various counter narratives that fail to penetrate the mass media’s filters. This, for example.

But the board’s main concern in all this is that, according to them, Trump is “intent on eroding institutions that undergird democracy and peace.” To clarify, they’re referring to NATO again, or what they call “allied security.” It’s an obsession with these people. So let’s look at it a moment. I’ll give you a few well-known (but poorly understood) examples of NATO’s philanthropic work over the decades, since the Times forgot to include them in its editorial: namely, the illegal bombing of Yugoslavia, the illegal invasion and occupation of Afghanistan, and the illegal “humanitarian” intervention in Libya. After I’m finished writing this, I must write the Times to notify them that they printed a typo: they obviously meant to write “undermine,” not “undergird.”

It boils down to this: NATO is good because it’s us. Trump is bad because he’s ambivalent about NATO. If Trump succeeds in “eroding” NATO, the beneficiary is Putin, “whose goal is to fracture the West and assert Russian influence in places where Americans and Europeans have played big roles, like the Middle East …” Given the outcomes of those “big roles” (9/11, the destruction of whole countries, ISIS, a flourishing slave trade, a migrant crisis of biblical proportions, mass famine, the tragedy of Gaza, the death of the two-state solution, the list goes on), it’s hard to imagine Putin, or anyone else, for that matter, doing any worse. So here’s a modest proposal: Washington sells its empire to Moscow and gets out of the world domination business for good. God knows we need the money. Unfortunately, Putin is no more interested in ruling over a global empire than we are in relinquishing one. (Fun fact: on defense, the US outspends Russia by about $540 billion.)

As Sakwa explains, “Putin’s challenge is not to the system of international politics but only to what he considers its skewed and selective operation in favor of the Atlantic system.”

“The Russian autocrat” has been, for a long time, crystal clear on this point. Far from harboring Washington-style fantasies of imperial glory, his is a vision of a multipolar world order in which the leading powers engage in serious diplomacy and coordinate their efforts to address the major economic, security and environmental issues confronting us all. Then there’s Trump: “But our destiny, beyond the Earth, is not only a matter of national identity, but a matter of national security. It is not enough to merely have an American presence in space. We must have American dominance in space.” (Emphasis mine.) Between insane rhetoric like that and NATO’s incessant (and equally insane) provocations along Russia’s western front, I think it’s fair to say Putin has shown an admirable degree of composure.

In their final flurry, the Times editors make some big-sounding statements about the need to prevent another nuclear arms race, duly omitting that the US is on track to spend more than $1 trillion over the next three decades modernizing and diversifying its nuclear arsenal (and no, we can’t pin this one on Trump). Then, flailing now, punching wide, they managed to project responsibility for the breakdown of the flawed Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty squarely onto Russia, duly omitting that the US, by continuing to install provocative missile defense systems across Eastern Europe, is in constant violation of the treaty. Inconvenient truths, I regret to say, are still truths; and lies by omission are still lies.

But let us not stray from the bottom line: Russia is the threat. Russia is the threat. Russia is the threat. If you say it enough times you might start to believe it—and then, and only then, can you count yourself among the good upright citizens of this great indispensable nation.

July 1, 2018 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia | , , | Leave a comment