Guardian Watch, latest, Russia

wheels finally come off the Guardian’s Russophobia

The Graun’s latest piece of Russophobia is so flamingly, screamingly ridiculous, there’s no need to deconstruct it….

Senior government officials fear the violence unleashed by Russian hooligans at Euro 2016 was sanctioned by the Kremlin and are investigating links with Vladimir Putin’s regime.

…runs the headline.

Oh dear dear dear. Can’t you just see the editors squirming and cringing when this morsel landed on their desks from GCHQ? Can’t you picture the ensuing phone call…

Editor: Hi yes, it’s me – we just got your latest, and well, it’s terrific as usual obviously, but there’s a couple of teensy little issues we sort of want to chat about…

GCHQ: Go on…

Editor: Ummm…you know…we’ve been talking here and the consensus is – do we really want to actually say the Kremlin sponsors football hooligans?

GCHQ: Why not?

Editor: Well, ummm, perhaps because it looks – I mean obviously it isn’t – but it sort of does look just a tiny bit…silly?

GCHQ: Silly?

Editor: Yes. I mean, we’re just sort of a little bit wondering if perhaps some of our readers might say ‘why on earth would the Kremlin bother to do something so totally pointless’?

GCHQ: Pointless? Didn’t you read the memo? This is Putin doing hybrid warfare.

Editor: Oh absolutely! we all know that, I mean obviously Putin sent the hooligans to Marseilles to undermine western values, but… I’m just not sure our readers will believe it.

GCHQ: I’m not sure we like your tone. Are we going to have to send the boys round again?

Editor: Oh good God no. We are totally on side in this. Absolutely. It’s just…do we really have to say the thing about the football hooligans?

GCHQ: Yes. You do.

Editor: But what if people make fun of us?

GCHQ: That’s your problem isn’t it.

Editor: Yes, I suppose so.

GCHQ: I mean it’s you looking silly, not us.

Editor: Yes, right.

GCHQ: Because that’s what we pay you for.

Editor: Yes. Ok. Umm…Alec really doesn’t want to put his name on this one, and neither does Shaun, and even Luke’s not too keen – I think they’ve upped his meds or something.

GCHQ: Look, we don’t care what bloody name you stick on the thing, just publish it…

Editor: yes, right…probably I can lean on Daniel to do it, he owes me a few …

GCHQ Ok, so get  on with it then.

Editor: Yes, of course. Will do. Thanks for the chat. And thanks once again for the amazing privilege of working with you.

GCHQ: Oh shut up you bloody little dogsbody.

Editor: Yes, of course. Right. Anything you say…

Which is why even Shaun Walker feels the need to distance himself from this cringeworthy nadir. And poor old Daniel Boffey, “policy editor” gets to carry the can.


Not much else to say, is there?


  1. rtj1211 says

    Actually, it’s perfectly reasonable to assume that various EU states who did a lot of business with Russia told Putin that it would be a jolly good idea to send some Russian hooligans to beat up English football fans as a diplomatic signal to London that being such toadying creeps to American economic grandstanding didn’t really go down well in the capitals of Europe, not to mention the Kremlin…..

    It’s better than murdering an MP, executing people at airports or ruining a sporting event by engaging in weather engineering, isn’t it??

  2. Mark Gobell says

    Orgainsed Football Violence : Russia vs England 12 June 2016

    Orlando LGBT shooting psyop 12 June 2016

    Declaration of the Creation of the USSR

    Declaration on 29 December 1922
    Adopted on 30 December 1922

    Relationship ?

    = 888 months, 888 weeks, 888 days

    Now, about your “judgement” that the Graun’s Russiophobia is the reason for their article …

    Tell me this was an organic “football violence” event …

    Surely, even self obsessed keyboard warriors can start to see the chink in their “reasoning”.

    How you ever hope to arrive at rational conclusions while only considering some of the evidence, is a complete mystery to me …

    I say again, with all due respect, you have little clue as to what is actually going on …

    You don’t even appear able to properly interpret the Graun’s twilight language when it’s right in your face …

    KInd regards


  3. Time for a BREXIT says

    Well hold on one second because we cannot say that about Russians because it’s “Hate Speech” is it not and the thought police will have you arrested.

    I am getting a bit sick and tired when our government keeps telling us what we can and cannot say and everyone knows that no one is better at fighting at football matches than the British.

    Next they will be trying to blame Mr Putin for the rise of ISIS and getting Turkey to give these terrorists Sarin gas back in 2013 and then using that gas in Syria and then trying to blame it on the Syrian government.

  4. rabbitnexus says

    Never been more proud to be blocked and banned for the past six years by the useless rag.

  5. Sav says

    Notable that the Guardian won’t allow comments on any of their ‘Putin behind hooliganism’ articles.

    Shaun Walker is trying to get back some credibility after getting caught out on pretending to read the MH17 Dutch Safety Board report.

    • reinertorheit says

      Not to mention saying that he saw “Russian tanks rolling into Ukraine”, accompanied by a photograph of a Russian tank taken two years earlier passing a petrol station in Ekaterinburg. Shaun’s reputation is beyond all possible rehabilitation.

  6. Alan says

    There is an article circulating claiming the use of Svoboda ‘rent a mob’, shipped to Marseilles in a trawler. The convenience of such action together with other sport based attacks upon Russia seem consistent with an ‘intelligence’ role. The Guardian’s piece fit’s well with the theory. Given how well such simplistic pieces fit one can only assume how wrong we really are.

    • Richard Le Sarcophage says

      Two off-side goals in today’s defeat by Wales, too, reminiscent of the Belgium vs USSR game at the 1986 World Cup.

  7. Kaiama says

    The anti Russian war in the media is clearly in full swing, as is the war against Brexit and also Trump.
    The feverish protestions of the MSM and huge investment in bullshit production clearly mean that the establishment is apoplectic that:-
    1 The Russians might actually “win” in Syria
    2 Brexit might actually “win”
    3 Trump might actually “win”
    With the US threatening to bomb Assad because he is winning, and the US threatening to build an economic wall against Russia (for which Europe will suffer), and now the Chinese have opened patent infringement proceedings against Apple, it is clear that the gloves are off

  8. Hybrid War [that’s so high it’s cuckoo]

    Well my guess it that given the Graun believed the NATO/CIA/GCHQ story line about Russia invading Ukraine and annexing Crimea so completely, the USA’s “rent-a-plot” psy-ops-services, clearly thought they and their remaining neutered readership would believe anything.

    Well the Graun has had its own prolific hybrid war on its readership, which has lent it totally pliable to opinion free comment sections…

    So it seems anything goes at the Graun these days.

    • Richard Le Sarcophage says

      The Guardian presstitutes cannot believe the lies re. Ukraine. They must, unless they are brain dead, know the truth, because it is so bloody plain. They lie to keep their well-paid jobs, as State propagandists, in an era of mass immiseration.

  9. I may be out of step but in the days of the Soviet Union there were no Russian football hooligans: Now there are. This is a source of great sadness to me. Of course the western intelligence services will use any imaginable and sometime unimaginable thing to stoke their war-lust against Russia but the fact remains: Where there were once no football hooligans (or football hooligans were utterly suppressed) there are now football hooligans, many with fascist and racist views (and they are not being suppressed). Opposing the Ukrainian fascists is one thing but it is only meaningful if the Russian people are able to deal decisively with fascists closer to home. I am old and I miss the peace and security that Josef Vissarionovich brought not only to the Soviet Union but to the whole world, when the USSR was indeed a beacon for working class people. The best way to blunt the subterfuge of GCHQ and M16 and their despicable dupes/agents at the Guardian is to stand firm for order and for decency.

    • John says

      I am old too but I definitely do not miss Stalin. He killed millions and made the lives of many more utterly miserable.
      Why do people always imagine things were better in the past? Of course they were not.
      My guess is that for most of the Stalin era, antibiotics were not available for many Soviet citizens for some time.
      Yes, the Yeltsin era was hard to deal with but with him gone there have been steady improvements.
      Give modern-day Russia and modern-day Russians a chance to show what they are capable of.
      My nephew’s wife – who is Russian – tells me that living standards in Russia are very good for most people.
      Her close family relatives in Russia are all leading good lives – so why the nostalgia for non-existent days?

      • Hi John,

        Have you ever had a chance to read “Lies Concerning the History of the Soviet Union,” by Mario Sousa?

        If it’s permissible to pilfer one’s own comment left at another blog, then by way of a short preamble:

        What prompted me to go looking for this information was an exchange I was having with someone in the comment section of a blog (everyone responding to me was unabashedly of an extreme right-wing standpoint, but seemingly blissfully unaware that his view of the world might have been the result of having been exposed all his life to a tapestry of lies) who, again (I’ve heard it all so many times before), spouted the old and outworn trope of the commies of the Soviets having murdered 60 million of their own in the Gulag, and furthermore, that it’s not the U.S. that is even today behaving imperialistically, but that it has always been the Russians and the Chinese who have been bent on world domination.

        Now I’m not going to speak on what may or may not be the ultimate intentions of the counter revolutionary bourgeois cliques that now dominate both the Chinese and Russian ruling elite, but it is clearly a delusion, based on ascertainable facts, to believe that the U.S. is all about freedom and democracy and not about naked military, political, and economic dominance.

        Sousa’s essay demonstrates yet again the lengths to which capitalist regimes go to distort and deform our understanding of their intentions and world historical events. And it also underscores how persistently obstinate and enduring become the viewpoints (and lies) disseminated by the media to which people are exposed en masse. It’s really fucked up and profoundly disorienting for the naive and unsuspecting majority. And of course, that’s how the high ranking bourgeoisies manage to take us to war against our brothers and sisters, to do their murderous bidding.

        I would also add that if Mario Sousa’s work has a weakness, it resides in only this: it is un-referenced, lacking footnotes or links to original sources of information. However, anyone can easily ‘fact check’ his attributions as the origins of his claims are clearly enunciated.

        A brief quote from Sousa’s essay in the hope to pique your curiosity and entice you into reading the piece:

        Quote begins:

        Today books have appeared on the matter written by the above-named researchers or by others from the same research team. Before going any further, I want to make clear, so that no confusion arises in the future, that none of the scientists involved in this research has a socialist world outlook. On the contrary their outlook is bourgeois and anti-socialist. Indeed many of them are quite reactionary. This is said so that the reader should not imagine that what is to be set out below is the product of some ‘communist conspiracy’. What has happened is that the above-named researchers have thoroughly exposed the lies of Conquest, Solzhenitsyn, Medvedev and others, which they have done purely by reason of the fact that they place their professional integrity in first place and will not allow themselves to be bought for propaganda purposes.

        Quote ends.

        You can, if you are interested, read his essay here:

        • John says

          I did read the essay – all of it! – which was quite long but also provided very detailed statistics.
          The author describes himself as a Member of the Communist Party Marxist-Leninist Revolutionaries Sweden – even now! – so there may be some partiality there.
          I have sent the link on to my nephew – a history examiner – and asked him to read it too.
          I have also asked him to ask his Russian wife what she makes of it.
          I see him later this week so hopefully he will give me his and his wife’s feedback on the essay.

          • Yes, a bit of a read and some well documented numbers to digest.

            And indeed, “[t]he author [does] describes himself as a Member of the Communist Party Marxist-Leninist Revolutionaries Sweden – even now! ,” so there was indeed some partiality, some motivation, in wanting to share with the world the results of a rare and honest and painstaking and many years’ long effort from a “right wing capitalist establishment perspective” — from people like V.N. Zemskov, A.N. Dougin and O.V. Xlevnjuk — of the actual truth about “all of the many millions murdered by Stalin.”

            I presume that in light of the disappointing numbers of this deliberately disregarded and publicly suppressed research, it was not in jest that another historian and researcher with a Marxist bent – Michael Parenti, to be precise — once asked that: if so many tens of millions of Russians were murder by the Soviets, where then are they all buried; where then might one find any of what must surely be ample surviving forensic evidence of such mass slaughter; and why then did ensuing post-Stalinist administrations not seek in subsequent years to convict at least some of the perpetrators of these monstrous crimes?

            It would indeed be interesting to hear the reactions of your nephew and his Russian wife.

            As for myself, a person usually averse to the taste of alcohol, I felt I needed to pour myself a good stiff double of the stuff that my wife likes to sip now and again, and I did.

    • Richard Le Sarcophage says

      In the days of the USSR Soviet competitors were good sportsmen, fair and decent. The Yankee attitude of ‘Winning is the ONLY thing’ seemed unknown.

  10. “Papa, what mean is ‘hooli-gonad-ism?’ ”

    “Well, Benny, that’s what people, who regress back into primitive tribalism at sporting events precisely designed to incite such mass psychoses, engage in, imagining themselves to be a part of a manly race of superior manly men intent upon asserting the superiority, as measured in inches, and even only fractions of fractions of inches, of their manhood, a tribal superiority that can only be established by how willing and able you are to take a drubbing by whatever means brought by the other inferior races of men attending the jolly sporting event, be it nothing more than naked fists, but sometimes lead pipes, or improvised maces, or knives or handguns, but sometimes just the mugs or bottles out of which the sport loving fans happen to be drinking y their lager to remain hydrated and that they can use as missiles or bludgeons.

    “Lately, however, as you can learn from the ‘Guardian’ if you can read — a font of depthless wisdom for anyone prone to believing everything and anything that appears in print media — it’s become a rather clever and devious Russian military stratagem in asymmetrical warfare, wherein Putin, who is bent on world domination in a way that the West could never be, rounds-up the most reactionary elements of Russian society and buys them all tickets to international sporting events abroad, urging them with the threat of imprisonment to just go and have a jolly good time as the good Russian emissaries that they are, emissaries of what is both most representative and best in Russian society. The result is, as you put it, Benny, Russian incited ‘hooli-gonad-ism,’ a dangerous destabilization of Western cultural values. ”

    “Papa, what mean is ‘rushing ema-missionaries?’ ”

    “Well, Benny, that’s a form of Russian propaganda in the guise of Russian expats that . . .”

  11. The Guardian has become as subservient to its masters as The Sun. And its anti-Russian, blame Putin policy is blatant for all to see. These outlets of MSM are just putty pressed into shape by their owners and the nation state. The worst reflection of anti-Russian sentiment is the blanket-banning of Russian athletes from the Olympic Games (something never heard of before).

  12. James Carless says

    Take away the world cup from Putin in 2018 that’ll teach ’em ,the Russian hooligans are obviously using performance enhancing drugs to give them an unfair advantage against British hooligans who rely solely on beer to go beserk.
    Also the Russian buggers won’t accept NGA dollars to stage a coup in Red Square like the useful idiots from Lviv did in Maidan.
    It’s just not cricket !

    • Richard Le Sarcophage says

      There is NO chance that the 2018 World Cup will go ahead. The insane Russophobes in the West won’t allow it, and we may very well all be dead by then, after a thermo-nuclear war caused by the West’s truly demented aggression.

  13. Seamus Padraig says

    Wow. When an article’s too Russophobic for the likes of Shaun Walker, you know it’s Russophobic!

  14. John says

    I have seen Putin on RT riding with biker gangs in Russia, and the youth wing of his political party seems intense.
    Therefore, he does himself no good in the eyes of Western civilians with antics like being a biker gang member.
    He should make a more conscious effort to appear as a global statesman and stop indulging in unnecessary stunts.
    It is strange that when English football hooligans were at their peak no one accused the British government of being involved in their activities yet now The Guardian and others want to label the Russian government as being involved in football hooliganism. Surely this is a case of double standards?
    I find it hard to understand why there seems to be an ongoing attempt to demonize Putin in many ways.
    I don’t believe it is any sort of prelude to military action being taken against Russia.
    Rather, it is an indicator of the weakness of the US and NATO countries that they end up in silly nonsense like this.
    I think they are trying to weaken Russia but all they have really “achieved” is growing internal support for Putin.
    Like so much else in their interventionist policies, the fallout and blow-back is not at all positive for them.
    Is this yet another case of “F*** the EU” Nuland squandering Hundreds of Millions of US taxpayers’ Dollars?
    When will the dumb Yanks finally learn they have not the faintest idea as to how to conduct foreign policy?

    • Guest says

      Your post shows a real lack of knowledge and understanding about the Bikers.
      The Russian bikers you disparage are an NGO who work for the benefit of Russian society. Not everyone who rides a motor bike is a bad person.

      • John says

        You just don’t get it, do you? It is all about perception, not about reality.
        Can you seriously imagine the President of the USA or France riding with a motor bike gang?
        Even if they do fantastically good works, a statesman would show support in a more indirect manner.
        President Putin needs to learn this lesson if he wants to be taken seriously by a Western audience.
        If he doesn’t care, well, OK, but it does make it all the easier to misrepresent him in the western mass media.

        • Richard Le Sarcophage says

          It seems to be you, John, who doesn’t ‘get it’. The Western MSM presstitutes attack Putin for EVERYTHING he does. He appears with religious, and he is attacked for that. He appears with bike-riders-attack. He appears with a returned Jesus and he would be attacked (and the Nazarene attacked as an ‘appeaser’). ‘Perception’ doesn’t come into it. Thought Control certainly does.

        • reinertorheit says

          You were told you were wrong about the bikers, yet you continue to blather your trash. Typical American.

    • Catte says

      That’s a very western-centric POV. Based upon the unconscious assumption that our (western) opinion is somehow more weighted and significant than any other. Would it occur to you to suggest the POTUS should refrain from making jokes about torture or WMDs in order to appear “more of a statesman” to the Russian people? Of course not. Because the Western viewpoint of the East defines the East. But the Eastern viewpoint of the West is no more than a quaint footnote.

      You’re being parochial without even realising it.

      And it’s weak, disordered regimes that are most likely to fall into war as a means of distraction and an outlet for collective rage and frustration. They don’t even need to do it intentionally. Do you realise how much hardware and manpower is currently confronting Russia on its borders and around the Syrian coast? In these circumstances it only needs one mistake, a flyby that gets too close, an accidental collision, and we’re in the middle of a confrontation no one will be able to control.

      Cosy assumptions of security are not what we need right now.

      • John says

        I can cite one instance of Putin acting in a statesmanlike manner which may assuage your concerns: his decision not to react to Turkish provocation when they shot down one of his air force bombers in Syria.
        If he had reacted aggressively, it could well have led to all-out conflict in the area.
        Fortunately, he kept a cool head and forestalled any conflict.
        You may think this “western”-orientated approach wrong but I believe there are modes of behaviour which reach out across all cultures – western, eastern, or – for that matter – northern or southern.

        • I agree, but if we consider this “modes” we have to agree the Russian political establishment abides by most of them with a maturity entirely lacking in the shameful antics of our western leaders in America and the EU.

          • John says

            You may well be right.
            The UK leaders “performance” in the referendum debates and campaign are highly unedifying.
            Norman Finkelstein said only the other night how disappointing Obama had been as US President.
            I don’t think Obama really cares about his political legacy; only his own personal financial legacy.

        • Richard Le Sarcophage says

          The ‘Western’ world recognises NO moral law, but straight power projection and aggression. The instances are legion, from the horrors inflicted on Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Libya, the deliberate use of ‘Divide and Rule’ and civil war in Vietnam, Korea, Yugoslavia, the USSR, Iraq, Sudan, Rwanda, Angola, Mozambique, Libya etc, the continued use of death-squads throughout Latin America, in Syria, Iraq, Rwanda etc, and the creation and support of innumerable fascistic and other despots, like Suharto, Mobutu, Pinochet, Saddam, the Shah, Park, Thieu, Zia ul Haq, Kagame and scores of others. Then there is the brutal subversion and economic warfare now returning Latin America to the living Hell of the neo-liberal ‘Washington Consensus’ of mass poverty and elite hyper-wealth. Those, and many more besides, are the true Western ‘modes of behaviour’.

  15. Kathleen Lowrey says

    Very funny piece.

    “Editor: But what if people make fun of us?

    GCHQ: That’s your problem isn’t it.

    Editor: Yes, I suppose so.

    GCHQ: I mean it’s you looking silly, not us.”

    Hopefully someday there will be a tell-all memoir about this period at the Guardian that reveals what staff writers make of the revolt in the commentariat.

  16. M. le Docteur Ralph says

    A slightly edited version of the Observer article:

    Senior government officials admitted the violence unleashed by English hooligans at Euro 2016 was sanctioned by the Downing Street regime as an attack on Vladimir Putin’s government.

    It is understood that a significant number of those involved in savage and highly coordinated attacks by “England” fans on French Police and others in Marseille and Lille have been identified as being in the “undercover uniformed services” of the United Kingdom.

    The theory is that the sanctioning of hooliganism by Cameron’s regime is a continuation of what has been described as America’s campaign of “hybrid warfare”. Whitehall experts admit the tactic is a ploy to encourage Russophobia while building on a narrative inside the West that Russia is a threat to the West.

    A Whitehall source told the Observer that social media had been implemented to fake the backgrounds of those involved. “It is difficult to plant evidence that this was sanctioned by the Kremlin but we have stressed the fact that a number of Russian hooligans are Russian squadies,” the source said, “in order to make the gullible and unquestioning believe that it looks like a continuation of the hybrid warfare deployed by Putin.”

    The head of Britain’s Euro 2016 policing operation, Cheshire’s assistant chief constable Mark Roberts, said the attacks were the most serious and coordinated he had organised in 10 years organising football violence. He told how UK police undercover agents attacked some 150 Russia fans after “tooling up” with gum shields, fingerless martial arts gloves and bandanas.

  17. Putin sends his shock troops to the European Football Championships.

    Senior UK government officials fear the violence unleashed by Russian hooligans at Euro 2016 was sanctioned by the Kremlin and are investigating links with Vladimir Putin’s regime. It is understood that a significant number of those involved in savage and highly coordinated attacks on England fans and others in Marseille and Lille have been identified as being in the “uniformed services” in Russia.
    The theory is that the sanctioning of hooliganism by Putin is a continuation of what has been described as Russia’s campaign of “hybrid warfare”. Whitehall experts fear the tactic is a ploy to demonstrate Russian strength while building on a narrative inside the country that the rest of the world is lining up against it. (The Observer 19/06/2016)

    This really is a collectors’ item. Please note that in terms of EVIDENCE, we get ‘’Senior government officials’’ and ‘’the THEORY is … ‘’ and ‘’identified as being in the uniformed services’’ in Russia. This really is so amateurish it could have been lifted from a James Bond film. If propaganda is to be effective it must be plausible, but this is utterly preposterous.

    All of which demonstrates most clearly and indeed blatantly that the western media has gone into overdrive in the hybrid war against Russia. The fact that English fans were the first to make their mark on the Championships with their usual hooligan antics before England even kicked a ball was indicative of what was to come. Since that time there have been disturbances involving Croatian, Icelandic, Hungarian supporters, but Russian fans are singled out for what by now is the usual Russophobic treatment.

    Unfortunately hooliganism is endemic in football at national and domestic levels. Try watching games between Boca Juniors versus River Plate, Lazio versus Roma, Glasgow Celtic versus Glasgow Rangers, Shakhtar Donetsk versus Lviv Karparty at domestic level, Brazil versus Argentina, or England versus Scotland, at national level.

    Add the special treatment of Russian fans, regrettable and unconscionable, but no different from anyone else in the competition, to the blanket ban on Russian athletes in the forthcoming Olympics, and a picture emerges of the western MSM deliberately trying to whip up hostility to the Russian Federation, in the ongoing full spectrum of a hybrid war, which Russia didn’t start.

    • Guest says

      Excellent response.
      The actions of the Russian fans resulted in a threat of disqualification and given s heavy fine
      What will be done to poland, croatia, Hungary, belgium, Turkey who have been involved in fighting inside and outside the stadium and setting off Fireworks?
      I hazard a guess that nothing will happen to them, I would like to be proved wrong.

  18. I loved this article so much that I sort of reblogged at the Guardian as follows: Football violenceThe Observer
    The best article of the week by far is ….Whitehall fears Russian football hooligans had Kremlin links
    UK government: we suspect many of those who attacked England supporters are in Russia’s uniformed services, fighting Putin’s ‘hybrid warfare’.
    You have to feel sorry for the journalists who have to put their name to this, I wonder how they choose. Perhaps they draw lots.

    It got quite a few likes but unfortunately got taken down after five minutes. Perhaps you should run a monthly competition with an award for the stupidest Russophobic article , and a gong for the unlucky journalist wh had to put their name to,it.

  19. Roger says

    Given that the OPPOSITE of the establishment view is correct, and that the rest is a lie, one must assume these so-called ‘russian’ hooligans were either paid or otherwise persuaded, or that the british were paid etc. to provoke them and create a ‘case’. Or that the ‘russian’ hooligans were not russians at all. Poles maybe, or Balts, or Ukranians.
    Ahyway, Putin did it because he is…..Putin.

  20. Guest says

    Words fail me. The Guardian is just s lost cause

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