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“We hates Putin…we hates him forever…”: the Guardian’s fresh ravings on Russia reflects West’s tipping point into new levels of dangerous insanity

There is ample evidence that the Guardian is now, following the re-shaping of its financing and management, reinvented as the paper of record for the UK/US intel agencies, which in turn currently harbour some of the most extreme anti-Russian pro-war ideologues in the business. As such its editorial policy gives us an insight into exactly who is currently getting most leverage in policy-making. When they go relatively soft on Russia you know the voices of sanity are making headway. When they begin ranting about Putin you know the lunatics have grabbed the steering wheel again and we’re heading back towards the cliff edge.

Currently the Guardian’s editorial style isn’t so much ranting as it is writhing on the ground screaming “Putin…curse him…and crush him…we hates him forever”.

Since the still unexplained and increasingly odd Skripal “poisoning” hit the headlines, there has been at least one hysterical anti-Russian piece published every day over at Graun HQ. And if we thought previous bias and inaccuracy was deplorable, the journalistic standard displayed in these recent examples has become debased and frankly terrifying.

Terrifying because it shows that zealotry and pure xenophobia are driving out every other consideration. These articles are barely coherent any more. They are clearly written by people who have lost even the ambition toward perspective. They are little more than distilled Hate. Hate for an individual, hate for a culture, hate for an entire nation, hate that doesn’t even try to pretend it has higher motives than hate itself any more.

Who beside other zealots can read these outpourings and not be horrified at what they say about the state of sanity in our political class and for future peace?

Look at this editorial from yesterday.

Guardian view on the Russian spy attack: Sergei Skripal and the sowing of discord

Six paragraphs of nothing but poorly-sourced antagonism and (there’s no other word) lies. The opening sentence itself is a flagrant lie by omission of context.

When Vladimir Putin was asked recently what historical event he would change if he had the power, he said he would undo the collapse of the Soviet Union…

The source it links to is Radio Free Europe, which pulls the same trick. Everyone who knows anything about Putin knows what he meant when he said those words. Everyone knows he regrets, not the end of Communism, but the social disintegration that followed. He has said as much, unambiguously and clearly, numerous times. The Guardian just doesn’t care enough about its own journalistic reputation to apply a minimal amount of context. Hating Putin is more important than its own credibility it seems.

Second paragraph and another lie, but this time dipped in farce. Clawingly desperate to make its readers Hate as deeply as the author clearly does, it grabs at everything and anything it can find.

commentary on Russian state television observed that “traitors to the motherland” are not safe on UK soil, alluding to the “strange deaths” of other Russians in Britain in recent years, not just the 2006 poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko.

The author of the editorial (and indeed the author of an entire article devoted to this subject also on the Guardian a day or so back) is apparently too far gone to notice they’re quoting a joke. And a joke moreover implying the absolute diametrical opposite of what they claim it is saying.

The joke is that the British are killing Russians in the UK.

But the bigger and much darker joke, really, is the Guardian’s grim-faced inability to get it.

The disregard of anything approaching research here is best embodied by the fact an earlier version of the diatribe ascribed RT (“Mr Putin’s mouthpiece”) as a source for the above

But then sheepishly retracted when this elementary inaccuracy was pointed out to them:

In addition to the rambling poison-pen letter that is this editorial, we have also been treated to in recent days, this contribution from Mark Rice-Oxley:

This from the always reliably fact-lite Luke Harding:

This from Mark Bennetts just before the Skripal story broke (unsurprisingly the body of the article completely fails to substantiate the claim made in this ridiculous headline):

And this “review” by Sam Wollaston of the BBC’s documentary from last night:

It’s pretty clear from this that the Washington/London-led campaign against Russia is currently being ratcheted up rather than dialled back. Are we going to see “Snow Revolution#2” hit the streets of Moscow post-election? And if (when) that fails, what next? At some point the hate needs to stop and accommodation with reality needs to begin, and if it doesn’t where else can it end but in war?

Addendum:Check out the comments below the review mentioned above. Overwhelmingly represented by lowest common denominator Russia-hate. Where are the sober and sensible voices so often heard BTL on the subject of Syria and other matters, that lead to comments sections being closed as soon as they open? Are they all being deleted, pre-moderated, or are the majority of Guardian readers who are so sceptical about every other aspect of the mainstream narrative completely won over by its views on Russia?


76 Comments

  1. The Guardian just doesn’t care enough about its own journalistic reputation to apply a minimal amount of context.

    Hehohum Al-Guardian has a journalistic reputation, Sorry but Al-Guardian rarely had a reputation for quality journalism and what little journalisiti reputation wad allready circling the plug hole when my komment macht frei account was banned and my access to komment macht frei via my Twitter account was put on pre-moderation so I stopped buying the foul rag and that was over a decade ago !!!

  2. Terry Washington says

    “bourgeious interests”- isn;t that phraseology (dating back to the Cold War) pretty much dated in 2018( 26 years after the Great Social Experiment went to that Great Big Collective In The Sky)??? And you call me(in effect if not in so many words) a BACKWARD thinker??? Like I said, wake up and smell the borscht- the Cold War is like, so OVER(and at the risk of stating the obvious, your side LOST!!! Get over it!)

    • George Cornell says

      “Bourgeois” interests go back hundreds of years. Yes communism was a failure , doomed as is any system which fails to take into account human nature. And where have you been if you have not noticed how Russia and China have adapted to that reality? They have gotten over it and it is you who has them still mired in the 50’s.

  3. UK Govt Prepares to Step Up anti-Russia Attack: Without a shred of evidence the Tory government of Teresa May is about to launch a new attack on Russia. The build up has been lent credence by both BBC and CNN and major newspapers, including the faithful ‘Guardian of bourgeois interests.’

    The MI6 spy, Sergei Skripal, was of more use dead than alive to British intelligence. A nerve agent, which is produced at Porton Down, the UK Ministry of Defence’s Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), is said to have been used on Skripal and his daughter. Had the Russians wanted him dead they could have executed him for his crimes years ago but instead it was they who sent him back to the UK. If they’d needed to send a ‘warning’ to other potential traitors they could have done so when they had him in jail. Why choose now? Why choose the UK?

    It is no coincidence that the UK government is discussing putting into law something like like the US’s Magnitsky Act, to sanction individuals in Russia supposedly linked to Vladimir Putin. It is also no coincidence that Russia’s presidential elections take place this coming weekend. Rather than media coverage on the popularity of Putin in the polls, the press would have him demonised and Russia further sanctioned.

    MI6 had no further use for this ex-spy. It’s clear that this false flag murder attempt is part and parcel of the flow of events orchestrated by western intelligence.

    The same Teresa May who just signed multi-million pound arms deals with the murderous terrorist gang called the House of El-Saud is the same Teresa May who goes along with every damned scam her bosses throw her way.

  4. Terry Washington says

    What is unconvincing and dubious is NOT holding Putin’s Russia(which to my mind has NO “progressive” qualities to it unlike even the USSR- unless you consider homophobia, kleptocracy and corruption to be “progressive”! values) to the same critical standards we routinely do for the UK, US and other Western Societies!

    • Hellen Bartholomew says

      This isn’t the Guardian, and simply bullhorning chunks of evidence-free scripted Russia-hate isn’t enough.

      Let’s just take a look behind your list of tired memes shall we?

      In the last 18 years Russia has reduced poverty by 60%+, almost wiped out international debt, increased pensions and social welfare above inflation, rebuilt infrastructure, rebuilt industry, re-nationaliused portions of public utilities, raised life-expectancy, reduced infant mortality.

      Russia has a more active “opposition” media than the US/UK. It has more tolerant laws on public assembly.

      Regarding international relations it has operated exclusively inside international law and has expressed a desire for peace and co-operation.

      Kleptocracy? Russia was a kleptocracy under Yeltsin (but the West didn’t mind that). Since Putin cam to power Russia’s corruption index has dropped and continues to drop. So your “kleptocracy” claim is simply retrograde and nul.

      Homophobia? Russian culture may be what we consider ‘homophobic”, but so are many other countries whom people of your persuasion never bother to complain about. Unlike Russia, homosexuality in Saudi Arabia is a crime. Russian law does not criminalise homosexuality or penalise those who practice it. So, again your claim is nul.

      Corruption – covered by kleptocracy. Corruption in Russia has declined and is declining since the Yeltsin era.

      Now let’a take a look at the West:

      In the same period as above the UK/US have seen increased poverty, increased debt, decreased life expectancy, the stripping and ex-patriation of more and more means of production. The US/UK have invaded sovereign countries on provenly fake pretexts, committed acts recognised as war crimes under the Geneva Convention, murdered millions of civilians, used illegal WMDs against civilian populations. The US has pulled out of the ABM missile treaty thus endangering global stability, embarked on the Aegis missile system, organised coups and “color revolutions” in Ukraine (twice), Georgia, Lebanon, Tunisia, and even Russia (2012). It blatantly attempts to interfere in Russian domestic politics and has publicly acknowledged ongoing policies of destabilisation and regime-change aimed at the overthrow of Russia’s elected president.

      Unlike Russia we have not prosecuted any of our government officials for corruption, even when that corruption is proven. Why do you think that is?

      So, when we stop hiding behind memes and hold both countries to “the same critical standards” as you suggest we should, Russia is currently, by almost every index, a more ethical, just, socially progressive and peaceable nation than either the US or the UK.

      Show me some evidence to disprove this or prepare to be dismissed as an idiot or a troll.

      • milosevic says

        prepare to be dismissed as an idiot or a troll.

        Are those mutually exclusive categories? Why can’t it be both?

        Surely idiots make the best trolls, because they are unable to perceive the rank stupidity of their claims, and are thus able to assert them in a more genuine and convincing way, than non-idiot trolls, who are conscious of the fact that they are lying.

    • George Cornell says

      OH come off it! You are misinformed the way MSM addicts tend to be, avidly swallowing or snorting line after line of powdered desiccated BS.

      there has been much progress in Russia and the popularity of Putin is better testament to that than your “Polly want a cracker” parroting of MSM mantras.

      As for homophobia, I assume I am conversing with someone whose parents hated gays, were revolted by Liberace, and shed not a tear when Turing killed himself. They will get there, you can be sure.

      Kleptocracy was a result of the collapse and Putin is hardly to blame for either. Corruption? You mean like subprime, like Goldman Sachs and Greece, like Michael Millken, like Enron, like the state of Illinois…? Like lobbyists, like Halliburton, like the Clintons…

      You are in over your head my friend and return to the confines of Hannity, and Faux News, and your GI Joe comics.

  5. Terry Washington says

    Amazing how Russia (and before it the USSR) ALWAYS has an excuse and is NEVER to blame for anything- the Molotov Ribbentrop Pact of 1939-41, the Cold War!!! i thought this line of thought went out with the Berlin Wall coming down in 1989!!!

    • That’s really not up to the standard we expect from commenters here. Generic, silly and evidence-free. Why not provide examples and comparisons to back up what at the moment is a rather bald and unconvincing claim.

    • milosevic says

      Amazing how Russia ALWAYS has an excuse and is NEVER to blame for anything

      Russia is partly to blame for the destruction of Libya. They did not veto the UNSC “no-fly zone” resolution, and should have bombed the CIA’s Wahabi death squads into small pieces in the Libyan desert, rather than waiting until they were black-helicoptered over to Syria, before doing that.

      There, are you happy now?

      https://www.un.org/press/en/2011/sc10200.doc.htm

  6. MichaelK says

    Russia really doesn’t have an empire, compared to Washington’s which is obviously global. Just look at the number of military bases the US has scattered around the world, hundreds, whilst Russia’s can probably be counted on the fingers of one hand. And another telling example. The US empire has actually been growing over the last few decades, incorporating ex-Soviet client states in Europe and swallowing others whole, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Ukraine. In contrast, in the same period, Russia’s territory has shrunk, measurably, leaving millions of ethnic Russians stranded in former Soviet Republics.

    The main difference today is that Russia has stopped shrinking and is determined, rather, it has no other choice, to defend itself, its territory and interests, because its been backed into a corner and simply cannot retreat anymore.

  7. Terry Washington says

    Amazing how Russia always has an excuse(accepted by Putinoids such as John Pilger, Lindsey German of the StopThe War Coalition, Julian Assange on the Left and now Nigel Farage, Pat Buchanan and Donald Trump on the Right) for its neo-imperialist depredations that it would be unlikely to be accepted if it came from the West. Wake up and smell the borscht- classical imperialism is as dead as the proverbial dodo, whether it comes from the Kremlin or Whitehall!

    • Thomas Peterson says

      I only needed to get as far as the word ‘Putinoid’ to understand that your comments are not worth reading.

      • I read a bit further, if only for the purpose of establishing beyond all reasonable doubt that his posts are randomly generated by an AI program supplied with an inexhaustible supply of stock phrases and cliches. May I suggest the program’s user abandon the enterprise altogether and invest instead in a passport that will allow him to escape the lurid nightmare he so obviously inhabits?

  8. Terry Washington says

    The difference between the UK and Russia is that whereas the former has accepted that its imperial days are relegated to history(took a while though as Dean Acheson quipped, “Britain has lost an Empire but not yet found a new role”), Russia most certainly has NOT!!! Pace the blather about the so-called “Russian world” To paraphrase George Orwell in “Animal Farm”, Anglo American imperialism bad, Russian imperialism if not good, then not so bad!

    • Hellen Bartholomew says

      What is Russian imperialism? We talk about American imperialism because America assumes the right to dictate policy all over the world, unseats governments in lands thousands of miles away from home, invades distant countries , ignores international law.

      What does Russia do that qualifies as imperialism? What international laws does it break, what countries does it invade, what illegal wars does it start?

      Georgia, Afghanistan, Ukraine, even Crimea were completely reactive and about securing their threatened borders. Only a true sophist would try to compare those actions with aggressive imperialism as practiced by the UK and latterly the US.

    • OT but one odd thing about that article – we keep getting hits from it to our site, but there doesn’t seem to be any visible link from it to us.

      • @Admin. “A bit OT” I admit — but not much. Putin’s speech, the important part that was only commented on the Vineyard, is a manifesto for future benefits to Russia, to be brought about by unleashing the creativity of Russians themselves, from a Leader who has proven that he can deliver, both in war and in civil reconstruction. Putin is a builder like Peter the Great. He is a seeker after excellence like Catherine the Great. If he can mobilize the gifted Russian people to achieve even half the vision in that speech, the name Putin will go down in history with the same sobriquet attached.

        Which is why every self centered A-Z-C Mammonite hates Putin with the visceral hatred of an Iago for a Cassio:
        “He hath a daily beauty in his Life / That makes mine ugly”

        • I meant my sidebar observation about the unexplained clicks we were getting was OT. Not your comment!

  9. MichaelK says

    I suppose one could just label it… ‘wartime psychosis’, but this episode does illustrate how incredibly narrow the media spectrum really is in the UK, not broad and vibrant at all, but the opposite. The uniformity is staggering and shocking. No dissent, no criticism, no reflection allowed.

    It’s because the people recruited, employed and elevated within the ‘media church’ are vetted by a media structure that promotes loyalty and conformity, love of the state and our values, even though they represent the interests and values of a tiny fraction of the population; the ‘aristocracy’ that runs, owns and controls the country, people who live in lavish splendor and cannot possibly share ‘values’ with the rest of the population, except as nationalist rhetoric.

    The pressure to conform has always been strong in British society. Though after WW1+WW2 the exhaustion left room, briefly, for a couple of decades, for rebels to raise their heads and voices, not least in cultural life. But most of that’s been hammered down now and the clampdown almost complete, for example the ‘exile’ of someone like John Pilger to the sidelines. A brief look at his career trajectory illustrates how much has changed. How much has been damaged and lost. In comparison one looks on aghast at the rise of a charlatan like the Guardian’s Luke Harding, a guy who fits the new times like a glove, a liberal glove that shamelessly covers the iron fist of the state.

    • milosevic says

      The uniformity is staggering and shocking. No dissent, no criticism, no reflection allowed.

      It’s because the people recruited, employed and elevated within the ‘media church’ are vetted by a media structure that promotes loyalty and conformity, love of the state and our values, even though they represent the interests and values of a tiny fraction of the population

      I believe Noam Chomsky had something to say about that, before he became one of them.

      The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum – even encourage the more critical and dissident views. That gives people the sense that there’s free thinking going on, while all the time the presuppositions of the system are being reinforced by the limits put on the range of the debate.

      — Noam Chomsky, The Common Good

  10. Nick says

    “Where are the sober and sensible voices so often heard BTL on the subject of Syria”..

    I’ve had several ‘sober’ BTL comments removed this week. Not moderated just removed without note. This is obviously not a new phenomenon, but they seem to really ratcheting things up on all fronts at the moment, including aggressively memory holing dissenting voices.

    All incredibly worrying and jaw dropping. Any vestige of at least pretending not to be a Neo Con vehicle gone.

    • George Cornell says

      Goebbels is alive and well and works nights as a moderator for the Fraudian.
      Community standards!?!
      My aunt Fanny’s fanny.

  11. Big B says

    Concerning the Skripals: we have the known knowns; the unknown knowns; and the unknown unknowns. The major known known are that they are lying. Part of the propaganda MO is to create a hero of the hour: a focal point whose heroification and typical modesty (“I’m no hero”) serves to reify the narrative – no matter how implausible that narrative may become. They become as the “Face of L’Oreal” of the advertising campaign. The more human they become: the more inhuman it becomes to doubt or criticise them?

    In promoting PC Nick Bailey as the first attending selfless “hero”; the cultural myth-makers hit a narrational implausibility – how come he was so severely contaminated when others, who perhaps should have been at least as severely exposed, did not? As the story developed over the week, it has emerged that quite a crowd gathered round the Skripals (if it was indeed the Skripals?). The men and women in the hazmats did not arrive for three hours: in the meantime, local police conducted a search in normal clothing (as was photographed by local residents). An as yet unnamed hospital Registrar and passing nurse administered First Aid: clearing the Skripals airways. As PC Bailey is supposed to have been contaminated by administering mouth to mouth: then the Doctor and nurse were at least equally exposed? Yet they are “feeling fine” whilst PC Bailey has still not yet recovered from his near death experience.

    A more plausible alternative would be that PC Bailey was contaminated elsewhere – as proposed by Lord Blair on Radio 4:

    “There are some indications that the police officer who was injured had been to the house, whereas there was a doctor who looked after the patients in the open, who hasn’t been affected at all.”

    This fact was ‘confirmed’ by the Torygraph. Only to be discredited by, inter alia, Wiltshire Police and PC Bailey himself. So they are lying.

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/03/09/russian-spy-may-have-poisoned-home-police-believe/
    http://www.salisburyjournal.co.uk/news/journalnewsindex/16078868.Police_officer_in_hospital_over_nerve_agent_attack_releases_first_statement/

    The unknown knowns concern why are they lying? The idea that this will escalate militarily is absurd: we have no military capability to speak of. Certainly not enough to cause the Russians anything but hilarity. The clues are that this “brazen act of war” will be put to economic ends: the justification to use the powers we already have under the “Magnitsky Act” to sanction and asset strip. We have declared ideo-cultural and economic war on Russia. The fact that this is MORE toothless than the military option is irrelevant. There will be no Fifth Column Atlanticist insurrection against Putin. Nor will the Russian ‘bread lines’ be forming anytime soon: at least not before the ‘bread lines’ (food banks) already formed in the UK.

    Which brings me to the unknown unknowns: the ideo-cultural reasons for war. Here I can surmise that all the ideologues know is doctrinaire, passé, and essentially racist. To detract from the Third World conditions already austerity-manifest at home: invoke a common enemy. Rally round to defend our ideo-cultural values (‘Britishness’: that which made us ‘Great’) and prove their superiority over the demonised ‘Other’ (we wouldn’t extra-judicially murder {by drone} for treason, it’s not cricket!). Think of the recent culture industrial complex offerings of Dunkirk and the Oscar winning (racist xenophobe) Churchill’s “Finest,” sorry, “Darkest Hour”. The ‘Darkest Hour’ is culturally yet to come; and no amount of racist reverse-projection can stave it off? The lies of the week do nothing but to further expose the Big Lie of cultural supremacy (WASP values; #Global Britain): that we a hollowed-out and has-been nation who are ideo-culturally and now morally bankrupt.

    Anyone who is revolutionary or evolutionary minded could note: that capitalism will ultimately produce its own (ideo-cultural) ‘gravediggers’. If a tired old racist xenophobia is the only cultural defence we can muster: and that can only be elicited by lies – perhaps that time has already come?

    • Mikalina says

      Articles to this effect (get their money) are beginning to appear in Fraudian:
      https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/mar/11/softly-softly-isnt-working-sergei-skripal-litvinenko-salisbury-poisoning

      As for ‘capitalism’ or the next war, Subcomandante Marcos’s article on the war we are now in, WW4, is incredibly relevant even though it was written nearly twenty years ago. It gives a good explanation as to why the BBC, Guardian, police force, defence forces are all being run down.

      http://www.inmotionmagazine.com/auto/fourth.html
      (found this at Dissent Voices in article by William Hawes. Didn’t post as a bit perturbed by his insistence that population control is needed – never works out well for women and girls, that.)

      I wonder if can join the Zapatistas in Chiapas.

      • Big B says

        Mikalina: thanks for the links. On the first: all I can say is what a load of Bulloughs! He poses the six-billion-rouble question and answers with a Lady Bracknell parody: “To lose one spy may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose two looks like policy.” As for the “first nuclear attack since Nagasaki” quip about Litvinenko …in terms of bile, does he turn to Nick Cohen for incoherent mentoring? Then there is the link to “unexplained wealth orders”: an article that refers to the Criminal Justice Act 2017 – which was a plea to further Browder’s (not mentioned by name) cause and add a “Magnitsky law” of our own. This was duly passed, as you know. For me, anyway, a picture is starting to form. I could take asset seizure and forfeiture seriously if there had ever been a time in history when London was NOT the centre for corrupt capital. The City is a supra-national, supra-judicial entity within the British Isles – created precisely for the purposes of corrupt capital. This looks more like another level of control to adjunct the US “Global Magnitsky Act”. If you are not with us: we can seize your assets anywhere? The only place to hit the elite is in their ill-gotten bank accounts: as MBS just showed?

        As for the Subcomandante’s article: I totally agree, I can’t believe it is 14 years old. It could not be more apposite: especially as I am reading Alexander Zinoviev. He talks of the supra-state, that is a synarchic plutocracy vertically integrated into the material wealth of the nation state. Wherever the corrupt capital flows: the supra-national police must follow, be it NATO, EU-FOR, EU-NAV, G5 Sahel joint Force (the EU’s emerging integrated forces), Quads (in the S E Pacific). While people still think in terms of locality, the nation state has been superseded. With the recent developments: are we looking at a supra-judiciary based on the neo-global reach of the Magnitsky Law? That might sound far fetched: but is it any more ridiculous a postulate than Russia sent an assassination team to Salisbury with a suitcase full of VX?

      • milosevic says

        a bit perturbed by his insistence that population control is needed – never works out well for women and girls, that.

        As the Catholic Church would be happy to inform you, it’s every girl’s dream to have fourteen children. There won’t be enough food, or anything else, to go around, but at least three or four of them will probably survive.

        exponential growth — it’s not just for starving Indians, anymore!

    • milosevic says

      we have the known knowns; the unknown knowns; and the unknown unknowns.

      Actually, I believe that is a misquote.

  12. The Graun has lost itself in an ever growing gig in the sky. A gig of its own making. Just following the news there over the last week it’s clear that facts no longer have any reason, any purpose. Their hate for Putin , as Catte says, is all consuming, vengeful and even become psychotically delusional…

    Very sad, it is so pitiful to see. Like a bitter jilted lover who cannot come to terms with an affair which spun out of their control. Where the reality for everyone else bears no correlation with their own collapsing view of life and humanity.

    Whether it be Russia, China, Syria Iran or the US the world, it seems is run by tyrants who ran off with their virtuous maiden of truth. But in all reality there has to be perspective. And when you abandon that you lose all credibility.

    Their delusions have become so real that they would have others believe there are touchy feely female Jihadi’s in E. Gouta, Syria and liberated Feminine neo- Nazis fighting in Ukraine. That NATO’s European WW lll theatre of WAR with Russia is a scenario we can all walk away from victorious??? Rather like the PC Hero in Salisbury who didn’t realise he was in a spring episode of Midsummer Murders written by a team of hacks at the Graun…

  13. Theo says

    Interesting article.I recommend an article referring to the poisoning of the spy and his daughter on moonofalabama.org.

    • Yonatan says

      “Vladimir Putin, as I have often said, is a sinister tyrant.”

      Even Hitchens, while pretending to be outside, makes the obligatory obeisance to the western mantra in order to stay inside.

      • George Cornell says

        Very much like was his pig-bloated brother. Phony to the core.

    • bauhaus says

      The tone is palatable, but the message is pretty much the same. “Putin did it”

      🙁

  14. Johnny Hacket says

    I remember back during the build up to the Iraq war thinking that I had slipped into a parallel universe where all the people I know turn suddenly into willing recipients of war propaganda .
    I no longer comment on the Graun site anymore it just seemed inappropriate, like laughing at a funeral , or in this case being the only one not laughing at a funeral.
    Great article here .

    • bauhaus says

      I too rarely comment anymore, noticable step change at the guardian for some time now.

      Be interesting to see some of its user metrics, as for years I felt there was a good selection of regular posters (of differing opinion at times) lots of new accounts shouting down anything not promoting moar wars nowdays!

  15. MichaelK says

    For the last week this story from Salisbury has dominated the entire UK mainstream media to a remarkable degree, considering how little one knows about it, or, even if a crime was actually committed at all, that there was an ‘attack’ and not an ‘accident.’ The ‘villain’ of the piece, at this stage, has literally been conjured out of thin air, but this does seem to characterize the classic… witch hunt.

    In fact the narrative seems, if one was of critical and cynical nature, to have been ‘tailor-made’ to appeal and fascinate… journalists and the public, containing, as it does, so many of the classic elements of the spy/crime story. Mysteries contain a lot of room for the imagination to run wild and fill in the gaps in the narrative oneself, part of their charme and why they are so successful. But, this alone should make one wary.

    It almost seems like the media and the politicians been working hand in glove as their reactions are so similar.

    Moral outrage is something the British do… so well. At the same time one is allowed to flaunt one’s own moral superiority in relation to a morally inferior actor and compare oneself with them, the evil others, who are found wanting in every respect, which is all rather soothing and self-gratifying.

    • Mikalina says

      Add to this the plethora of crime series on the TV channels over the past 10 years or more. As our perceptions of reality and fantasy are blurred, we have been well programmed to accept this ‘spy’ narrative (or narratives of any kind for that matter). I believe that many of the posters here are of a certain age? Possibly this is why the story appears to be so outrageous and outside our belief system.

      • milosevic says

        As our perceptions of reality and fantasy are blurred, we have been well programmed to accept this ‘spy’ narrative (or narratives of any kind for that matter).

        Of course, the 9/11 Official Faery Tale is the Mother of All Narratives, never to be surpassed until the day that giant flying saucers appear over major cities, and the political puppets of the Neo-Liberal Empire solemnly announce, “Aliens from Zeta Reticuli have arrived, and we must do exactly as they say, or their Weapons of Mass Disintegration will destroy the world.”

        Anyone expressing any doubts will, of course, be immediately denounced as a Russian Agent and a Conspiracy Theorist.

  16. Excellent article. As a U.S. citizen I have been subjected to an amazing array of war propaganda over the years, but none of it more shrill, irrational, dangerous and totally without substance as today’s demonization of Russia and Putin. The fact that the populations of the U.S. and Europe aren’t collectively laughing in the faces of their leaders and media by this point in the game is both tragic and ominous I must say. If anyone in Europe thinks that the psychopaths and malignant narcissists running the U.S. war machine and economy care one whiff about their survival should a hot war break out in the Ukraine, or along the Polish border, even by accident, I’d suggest they think long and hard about how many innocent civilian deaths we in the U.S. are responsible for post-WWII. The European and American populations are simply pawns in the game for Western elites who no doubt are all quite secure in the knowledge they have their cozy spot lined up in some post-armeggedon government war bunker. At this point the American media is simply a uniform disinformation forum, and should really be considered an active criminal arm of the the criminal U.S. State.

    • Stephen Sivonda says

      Well spoken….completely on target. My thoughts have been the same as to the breakout of a hot war in Eastern Europe….fools for not being alarmed and speaking out.

  17. I think the cynicism expressed in many of the comments, though certainly justifiable, is not the whole story here. We need to also see the positives of the situation. For one thing, all of the American wars since and including the Korean War, have been unsuccessful. The only war America can genuinely claim to have actually won is the war on Granada, a tiny nation of 240,000 with no armed forces, when Reagan was president, which lasted less than a day, I think. They won that war hands down and regained a bit of national pride after their humiliating defeat in Vietnam!

    Since then, we had the bombings after the break-up of Yugoslavia, with the collapse of the USSR, so Russia wasn’t there to defend anyone, which could be notched as a military success for America/NATO, I suppose, but nothing else, unless you include the destruction of Libya, which considering the results, cannot be even remotely considered a success. In Afghanistan, the war has now been going on since 2001 and apparently the Taliban control more territory than ever. As Russia discovered with their intervention in Afghanistan, as with the British in the 18th century, the Afghanis don’t take lightly to being invaded and never give up resisting. Of course, America did get rid of Saddam, but the conflicts in Iraq didn’t end there and Iran ended up the victor, in many ways, with increased influence on what happens there. Certainly, no ‘mission accomplished’, by any stretch.

    The media may be beating the same drums, trying to rachet up anxiety in the populace, to get support for this archaic way of thinking, that wars are ever an attractive solution to problems, but the general populace, having access to many sources of information, are less and less buying that narrative. Just look at the yellow streamer at the bottom of the Guardian when you go there, basically begging for money, because they are losing readers in droves. If people want that kind of news, they just go to the BBC, which is state-funded and not asking for financial support. Why bother getting the same perspective by going to the Guardian? No need.

    Perhaps this thrashing and irrational rantings in the mainstream media are just the cries of an institution in its death throes.

  18. John Marks says

    And the Americans are pressing ever more to drag us – and Europe with them.
    We have a lot more in common with the Russians than the Americans – who seem, in the their support of jihadis, much more like a Christian version of Wahhabist Saudi Arabia.

  19. MichaelK says

    The Guardian’s ‘feminist’ stance, is incredibly problematic and mostly for show, signifying very little. It’s like a platform, or stage, where one gets to play a role within the confines of bourgeois culture/politics, but without any real purpose or danger. Recently I’ve heard ‘feminists’ arguing for regulation of various aspects of life and behaviour along lines that mirror what the ultra-conservatives where saying a few decades ago! This is… disturbing, the lurch of ‘feminism’ to the political right.

    I dunno. It’s disconcerting watching the great political pendulum swinging from the left to the right and all in the space of a single lifetime or a few short decades. But, paradoxically, it’s not the great mass of people who’ve swung, but the elite and now, especially, the so-called liberals and the soft left.

    • George Cornell says

      Feminist stance means the Guardian repeatedly published the preposterous view that men are women, just with different genitalia.

      When it was pointed out to them that every cell is different in a gender-specific way, shown by chromosomal, gene -expression and epigenetic studies, with links provided, they immediately deleted it.

      They are so feminist that for decades they refused to print the details of the Polanski case, saying he had “unlawful sex” (as if there were lawful sex with a 13 year old). But hundreds of other outlets, really interested in the welfare of women and children and not just posturing as such, had no reservations about publishing how quaaludes, alcohol, and sodomy were involved.

      There were followers in the me too movement and even tried to honey coat the allegations about Weinstein.

      They are a pathetic parody of the principled paper they once were. How anyone believes anything they write it beyond me. What they publish is not news, it is agenda, and opinion, and completely predictable at that. Run supposedly by a charitable family trust they have been shanghaied by evil forces who do not even have the interests of the public at heart.

  20. MichaelK says

    There used to be a time, not that long ago, when the representatives of the British ruling elite were rather formidable individuals… lying, murderous, bastards; but they had a certain style, even when butchering the natives and robbing them blind. They were so much more effective imperialists than the older, crumbling, empires. They even managed to convince themselves that their brand of imperialism was actually a positive chapter in world history and part of the white man’s burden. One could despise Churchill, but still have respect for his qualities and abilities. He fought for his corner, for his class, rather well.

    Not so the miserable little fuckers that have climbed their way over the bodies of other little fuckers to reach the stinking top of the steaming heap of dung that’s the top of the British social/cultural/ scene. How on earth can one have any respect for thes people at the Guardian? They’re hopeless and pathetic. Harding the spook is really an awful little wanker bursting with conceit. And don’t get me started on the ghastly posturing and virtue signalling, the endless moralizing, and the obsession with finding and labelling others, in this case ‘Russia’ as being unworthy and in need of patronising guidance from people who write stuff for the Guardian!

  21. Jen says

    I find very odd that under a female chief editor (Katherine Viner), The Guardian should have taken a direction where (mostly male) writers now start harping on about Putin, representing an outdated elite (the KGB), as an authoritarian dictator and Russia as a repressive police state that resents its loss of global power and influence. One would think this a classic case of projecting one’s desires onto a hated scapegoat; if there is any country likely to resent the loss of its empire, power and influence through its leaders’ decisions and actions in its territories throughout the 20th century, it is the UK.

    The newspaper’s women writers on the other hand gabble on issues of insignificant importance through a fake feminist filter, and make themselves look foolish and irrelevant.

    • Catte says

      Absolutely. Projection. And RAGE.

      Do not get me started on today’s “feminist” writers. They are walking representations of the worst sexist jokes from sixty years ago.

    • George Cornell says

      That is very perceptive of you, Jen (i.e. It synchs with my interpretation entirely). Don’t forget Viner was selected by a board composed of an all-male, all Oxbridge or City society, containing no minorities and all applicants for the post would have been screened to select for lapdogginess, and against any independent thought, objectivity or discernment. Much like the NSA where they used their own techniques to delete all boat rockers, lefties and principles to amass 40,000 toadying fartcatchers who were mute while the law of the land was being trampled.

  22. Terry Washington says

    Well, if OffGuardian’s correspondents disapprove of the Guardian’s anti-Putin stance then they can always subscribe to ANOTHER paper( the Morning Star or Socialist Worker perhaps)- to my mind the Guardian( full disclosure I am a long time reader of the Guardian and its Sunday stablemate the Observer) is no more “anti-Putin” than say the Daily Telegraph!

    • Hellen Bartholomew says

      Oh well yeah – if it’s no more anti-Putin than the Telegraph that’s fine. Aside for the stupid point-scoring aren’t you worried where the anti-Russian hysteria will end?

      • Terry Washington says

        No, not really- if Putin wants a new “Cold War” , let him have it- his side lost the first one and there’s no reason that the Russian Federation(which is WAY smaller and weaker than even the USSR of Stalin to Gorbachev) won;t win this one!

        • Harry Stotle says

          “if Putin wants a new “Cold War” – he doesn’t, Terry, only those brain-washed by the Guardian hate factory think he does.
          I mean that’s kind of the point of the some of output here; to help educate those who find it hard to understand the difference (the category you seem to fall into).

          The Guardian is busily sowing the seeds for the next bout of western aggression and Putin, understandably isn’t especially keen for Russia to be on the menu.

        • Jen says

          You won’t be cheering if the US decides defending its own shores takes first priority over assisting its allies in Europe if war should break out and the US and Russia start trading nuclear attacks and Britain finds itself on the receiving end of both waves of attack.

          Also for all the trillions the US has invested in defence, it seems to have got very little, er, bang for its buck: to take one example, the F-35 joint strike fighter jet program has swallowed billions in investment yet the planes are still plagued with technical problems (many of which are obvious even to people unfamiliar with fighter jet design); and in 2017, US warships were involved in at least four collisions with cargo ships resulting in loss of life (mostly US naval personnel). Having the world’s largest armed forces is not the same as having the most effective armed forces.

        • bevin says

          But he is winning! Cold wars are fought diplomatically and intellectually. And Russia is winning hands down in the propaganda clashes- in most of the world the US, Israel and the UK have, a thoroughly deserved, reputation for bluster, bullying and hypocrisy.
          In the forum of international public opinion Russia, which clearly doesn’t want any kind of war and goes out of its way to make peace and accommodate the imperialists, is winning hands down.
          Just consider what sane opinion makes of this double: ‘Putin interfered in the US elections of 2016’ and now the British version “Putin orders killings in Salisbury”. Anyone with the sense to be allowed out without a keeper knows that this is all nonsense. And those promoting the nonsense do not trouble themselves to produce any evidence at all for the serious charges that they make, just “Trust the Gestapo.”

          • Catte says

            Bevin – no one wins this war, as Putin has made it clear he’s aware. This war only goes one way. The more he “wins” the more dangerous things become, because these people don’t stop, have no concept of how to stop. They lose, they double their stake and go again. It’s incredibly dangerous.

            The only hope is – what? They are replaced with less insane people before it’s too late?

  23. And it is only starting, I am afraid. On Wednesday UN security council meeting to discuss the situation in Syria; plus Turkey, Iran and Russia to design the prospect of a peace plan a few days later. Would anyone bet against a new chemical attack (and/or a few humanitarian missiles) in the coming days?

    Soon afterwards we move to the Russian presidential poll. If I was one of those “liberal” candidates expected to raise from a .004% of popularity to challenge Putin, I wouldn´t go anywhere, just in case they chose me to become a symbol a la Nemtsov. Several articles on how the election was stolen, with scenes of brutal repression and all will follow (that Putin is to win the election no matter what doesn´t prevent him from stealing it, murdering his rivals and/or using unwarranted violence, of course).

    If the world hasn´t exploded by then, we have the world cup with the usual xenophobic articles on how the Russians can´t even have a decent toilet, an appetizer to prepare the sheeple for the (I hope I am wrong) Ukranian Nazi squads reigniting the war, using the fresh cannon fodder product of their new conscription law and the brand new weapons that Putin´s puppet, Trump, diligently provided. The “liberal” media will praise the Nazis and call for nuclear war, for peace and prosperity.

    Brace yourselves, this is going to be a dangerous year.

    • milosevic says

      Calm down, the ukro-nazis will just get re-defeated for the third time, as the wahabi-zionists have been.

  24. Putin/Russia provide a common enemy by which a divided and crumbling US/EU order can unite and survive. This is at least one conceivable reason for NATO’s buildup on Russia’s borders. Such recklessness indicates a truly desperate Empire unwilling to accept the new dawn of a multipolar world involving BRICS. Everyone should read “New Silk Road”.

  25. The BBC as Guardian mirror image in terms of Russophobic propaganda has also upped the ante with not one but three anti-Putin documentaries designed to coincide with and discredit the upcoming election: “Putin: the New Tsar” (directed by Patrick Forbes who alse directed ‘Wikileaks Secrets and Lies’ to condemn Assange; offers a Daily Mail-style reduction of current affairs to psychologically-impaired personalities [complete with testimony and analysis from an ‘esteemed’ Scottish academic, whose theories on power and narcissism do nothing to suggest that the Daily Mail analogy is unfair], with a definite classist bias in that Putin’s revlatively ‘poor’ origins have apparently made him a liar, an insecure, paranoid loner who is intoxicated with power; unlike the “charismatic, eloquent, principled” Nemtsov [whom, incidentally, Yeltsin “hated”!! because Nemtsov opposed the Chechen war!] Putin is an unreconstructed, ex KGB tough guy seeking to enrich himself at the expense of the whole country etc etc ); most amazingly , this ‘documentary’ grants significant air time to the disgraced, indicted and corrupt Mikheil Saakhashvili, while portraying none other than George W. Bush as a trustworthy and dignified world statesman; all in all, an unsophisticated hatchet-job of a documentary, then. The other two documentaries are by BBC Russia-specialists (read: BBC propagandists who speak Russian) Gabriel Gatehouse’s “Russia’s Fake Election” and Sarah Rainsford’s “Russia Rejecting the West”. All three are available on Iplayer and all released over the last week or so. Also, a somewhat surprising HardTalk interview with Boris Titov. Interesting because no matter how ‘hard’ Stephen Sackur attempts to cajole Titov into condemning Putin with the standard western MSM narrative, Titov disappoints by offering a common-sensical, measured view of Russian foreign policy, corruption etc. Sackur responds by suggesting that Titov cannot be regarded as truly ‘oppositional’ to Putin precisely because he does not toe the MSM line.

  26. bevin says

    We should never forget that insane people-however inconvenient and annoying they may be-deserve our sympathy.
    The Guardian desperately wants to turn back the clock and re-establish, the newsprint grounded, certitudes of the Cold War, when Britain was a welfare state and most of China was starving, but it can’t.
    They might long for war but it is difficult to see them getting anything better than what they have in Syria and creating Chechen style havoc in New Russia and the Donbas.
    So this is the rage of the impotent, panic stricken and howling for security in the face of that threat, which has ruined the lives of intellectuals through the ages, manual labour, work,

    • Hellen Bartholomew says

      how are we going to avoid war between the West and Russia if this rhetoric keeps building and building?

      • bevin says

        Don’t you sense that the rhetoric is so overblown and so distanced from reality that it is unlikely to persuade anyone that war is justified?

        • George Cornell says

          You mean in the way people were dissuaded from voting for Trump?

  27. Francis Lee says

    On its present offensive trajectory the Anglo-Zionist geopolitical project will terminate in war. I don’t know what they expect Russia to do in this situation other than hope that enough pressure and threats will force it to surrender. That, however, is not going to happen. The media led suicide campaign drunk on its own bullshit is reaching lunatic levels of Russophobia which will climax in earthly oblivion. I seem to recall that there is, or rather was, a term in diplomacy called modus vivendi. This meant a way of living or at least co-existing with someone who you don’t particularly like or who has rather a different lifestyle, including eating babies for breakfast.

    But hey, modus vivendi be damned! that is so passe. Carthage must be destroyed! Something must be done! The West must fight to the death to support Pussy Riot to conduct themseleves in a pornographic act in front of women and their children in a Russian Orthodox cathederal.

    Russia in general and Putin in particular have been demonised to a level which will very difficult to reverse, the whole process has now taken on a systemic momentum and the jackals and hyenas in the media elite will have got what they yearned for; but they will be sorry – as of course will the rest of us – when the outcome of their insane bleatings comes to pass.

    There used to be a bitter song that British and Commonwealth soldiers sang during WW1 as they slogged it out in the trenches of the Somme and Ypres. It went something like this:

    Whoosh here comes a Whizzbang
    Whoosh here comes a Whizzbang
    Come on you solider boys
    Get down those stairs
    Into you dugouts and say your prayers.

    Whoosh there comes a Whizzbang
    And its headed straight for you
    And you’ll see all the wonders
    Off No-mans land
    When that Whizz-bang
    Hits you.

    Now for an updated Geopolitical version

    Whoosh here comes a Szarmat
    Whoosh here comes a Szarmat
    Come all you neo-cons
    Get down those stairs
    Into your fall-out Shelters
    And say your prayers

    Whoosh here comes a Szarmat
    And its headed straight for you
    And you’ll all wonder of nuclear holocaust
    When that Szarmat hits you.

Please note the opinions expressed in the comments do not necessarily reflect those of the editors or of OffG as a whole