An Open Letter to the People of Britain, from Vasily Livanov MBE

This open letter, from iconic Russsian actor Vasily Livanov MBE, was first sent to The Guardian. They declined to publish it, we did not.

As with many of my compatriots, there are many things about Britain and the British people that I admire. As someone whose whole life has been linked with literature, cinema and theatre, I have the greatest appreciation for English literature and the arts, for its writers and playwrights, actors and directors. As someone who had the good fortune to have played the iconic Englishman Sherlock Holmes in a very successful Soviet film series, I was honoured to have been awarded an MBE by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. I am grateful for a chance to have been part of the mutually enriching cultural kinship and synergy of our two countries. As someone who has lived a long life, I vividly remember the years of WWII when the Soviet Union and Britain were staunch and proud allies in the fight against Nazism.

Many Russians feel an affinity with many things English – from pubs and gardens to Scotch whisky and Welsh singing and luscious valleys. Ascot races, Chelsea flower shows, London museums and Stonehenge – many will have been or at least seen them on TV. Perhaps surprisingly, many entertain a lively interest in the British monarchy and the Royal family, Russian television and papers carry stories about the Queen and her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Flattering stereotypes of Britain still abide. But more and more this idyllic picture is being marred by the political developments of recent years.

Today, as many of my compatriots, I am sad to see the state to which the relationship between our two countries has been reduced. While conflict situations can seldom be blamed on one party alone, I am convinced that the current deplorable and deepening crisis is primarily of London’s making.

Please do not make the mistake of writing this view off as a casualty of devious Kremlin propaganda. On the contrary, the view I hold and share with the vast majority of Russians has been shaped and honed, paradoxically, by incessant anti-Russian propaganda emanating from London’s corridors of power and the media that seems to have lost all capacity for independent reasoning, at least for anything Russian. Many in Britain may be surprised that Russian audiences are kept well informed of the international media coverage, certainly insofar as it concerns their country.

I do not intend to dwell on the long list of geostrategic and political differences between Moscow and London. Surely, each of side has its own interests and reasons for acting the way it does. Understanding these reasons is the job of respective governments and their foreign policy thinktanks. Manifestly refusing to understand those reasons is an abject failure of government. And that, I am sad to say, is exactly what I am seeing at the top of the British government and in much of the British press.

What we have been witnessing is London’s – and, more generally, Western – consistent refusal to treat post-Soviet Russia as an equal partner in international affairs. The more hawkish Western capitals – notably, London – have been trying to condemn Russia to be the defeated party in the Cold War, and to behave like one. Mind you, this is a view taken by most Russians who are also increasingly convinced that the West’s attacks are not directed at Putin or the Kremlin, but at their country as such, at the people and state of Russia.

Many will point to Crimea as proof of Russia’s aggressiveness and threat to world peace. But they should consider that Crimea, rather than being the cause, is a consequence of the total collapse of East-West dialogue in which London has played a significant role and often been the cheerleader. More importantly, it is, in the final count, down to the people of Crimea to decide where they want to be, certainly not to London or Washington.

The accusations London has been flinging at Russia’s door fly in the face of every complimentary stereotype that Russians have of Britain and its allegedly gentlemanly culture. People at the top of the British government have been talking down to Russians as some kind of ‘lesser people’ in a language that invokes the less flattering pages of the not so distant British imperial history.

PM Theresa May accusing Russia in the Skripals poisoning without any serious evidence was downright shameless. Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson likening Russia’s upcoming World Cup to Hitler’s 1936 Olympics was the ultimate insult – not only to Russia, but to Britain itself and the rest of the anti-Hitler coalition. Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson telling Russia to ‘shut up and go away’- does he even realise whom he is trying to bully? You can criticise Moscow all you want but it has never stooped to this level in talking to sovereign nations, big or small. Is an acute crisis in British education the reason for this excuse for statesmanship? What sort of policy do they think they are pursuing, what kind of world they are shaping? I feel genuinely sorry for Her Majesty the Queen that she has to call this government her own.

The current explosion of Russophobia and anti-Russian hysteria in Britain has no precedent in living memory. Not even the Cold War saw such blatant disregard for the norms and conventions of inter-state diplomacy. Anyone who calls for a meaningful engagement with Russia is branded a dangerous radical or traitor. People who even agree to talk to the Russian media are ostracised and side-lined. Anyone who simply calls for restraint or caution is vilified as a Putin puppet. Is there a name for it already? Un-British activities? A curious yet deeply troubling throwback to the McCarthy era in modern-day enlightened Britain.

It’s hard to escape the timing of this latest chapter in London’s lengthy anti-Russian saga with a crucial stage of the North Stream 2 project, the football World Cup and of course the recent presidential election in Russia. Which only goes to show that the instigators are quite ignorant of what the Russian people are like. Any hostile moves from the outside will unite us, we come together and find a response. They wouldn’t have attempted it if they knew the first thing about what makes Russia tick. They have to realise that in their poisonous campaign they are engaging not just the Kremlin or Putin, they are taking on the whole of the Russian people, including its political class and business elite.

We have no beef with the people of Britain. From what we can glimpse, more and more of them are sceptical of the anti-Russian propaganda spewed by the hawks in government and much of the media. The current cold winds will die down and our two countries will revert to a civilised and respectful relationship which has so much to offer. As a proud recipient of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire I aspire to wise and dignified British statesmanship that will make it possible.

– Vasily Livanov

Vasily Livanov, is a legendary Russian actor, director and novelist, born in 1935. He was awarded an MBE by Queen Elizabeth in 2006 for his exceptional portrayal of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes in the hugely successful Russian film series The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson.

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USAma Bin Laden
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USAma Bin Laden

Vasily Livanov may be well-intentioned but he is naive. The Anglo American Imperialist nations led by America and Britain are hostile to Russia (and others) because of fundamental geopolitical realities–regardless of what criminal regime resides in London and Washington DC or popular attitudes. In particular, the Anglo American imperialists are sea powers, which are fundamentally opposed to land powers like Russia (or China and Germany). 19th-century British imperial strategist Halford MacKinder most famously argued that land and sea powers are thus essentially in competition because of the imperatives of geography. To assert British world hegemony, he advocated British encirclement and… Read more »

binra
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In effect the patterns of conflict are ‘nothing personal’ so much as invested identity in the mask OF power struggle as THE prime directive. Or to put it another way, it is simply the logical output of programmed parameters as the consolidation of ‘power’ in powerlessness. The latter may not be apparent to those identified within the conflict believe in victory (and staving off defeat). ‘Soft’ power operates as ideas, as consensus ‘science’, as ‘medical’ hegemony and leverage of the deepest human fears. In the larger view I see the attempt to ‘escape’ or ‘eradicate’ the feared is exactly what… Read more »

manfromatlan
Reader

Um, he’s an Actor, FFS, writing about the good things he sees about the “English” culture, and maybe not aware of American geo-political designs. Rest assured, Kremlin military strategists ARE, hence their military buildup and new weapons systems at a fraction of the Pentagon’s budget. The American empire isn’t sustainable, so it will be a Russo-Chinese century.

Bill McLean
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Bill McLean

“Scotch whisky” and Welsh singing” – part of English life????? Either the MBE, or more likely English propaganda, has addled your brain. In either case not your fault. Even some very clever have accepted a trinket from the Empire nonsense and even Goebbels admired London propaganda. Otherwise a fine letter.

DL
Reader
DL

@Bill Maclean You are absolutely right. Obviously, a translator’s oversight. Indeed, in Russian ‘English’ and ‘British’ are almost always interchangeable (even though very wrong, especially in sensitive contexts such as this). My apologies for that. It was not Mr.Livanov’s fault, and certainly not his intention. Curiously, the English for ‘Russian’ is at least as confused. It uses one word ‘Russian’ for both “русский” and “российский” the first of which stands for ethnic Russian and the Russian language while the latter pertains to the Russian Federation and embraces any of the dozens of ethnicities and federative entities that make up the… Read more »

Richard de Lacy
Reader

No need to apologise. Some of the greatest writers from the British Isles have often used “England” to mean Great Britain or the United Kingdom, and two of the biggest “offenders” were bothe Scots: John Buchan and… Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of Sherloc Holmes.
Anyway, thank you for printing Mr Livanov’s elegant and important letter.

manfromatlan
Reader

He misspoke there which should have been obvious with the title of his letter. Most people of other countries mix “British” with “English” which perhaps only offends the little Englanders 🙂 When Andy Murray wins Wimbledon or England goes to the world cup semi-finals, the British still celebrate. But yes, a fine letter and one similar should have been written to the America as well.

Vlad
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Vlad

Most people of other countries mix “Russia” with ‘Russian Federation’ or even the ‘USSR’.
‘Boris Yurinov, the Uzbek’ is more fun than ‘Andy Murray. the Englishman’.

john2o2o
Reader

Or in this case little Scotlanders

wardropper
Reader

On the other hand, it is not only the people of England who are susceptible to Pentagon propaganda… The Scottish also have a reputation for being inherently ‘conservative’, which means not rocking boats, or trying new ideas and the like, despite having a strong nationalist core, like the Welsh.
If he misspoke, it is probably in overestimating the ability of Westminster to override Washington…

Bill McLean
Reader
Bill McLean

Wardropper – i’m afraid you are in error. Scots have a reputation for innovation and invention which even those mighty innovators the Chinese recognize. An American author Arthur Herman wrote the book “How the Scots invented the modern world”. Voltaire wrote “We look to Scotland for all our ideas of civilization”. Scots, like the Welsh, are only conservative in their foolish subservience to England, brought about by hundreds of years of colonialism.. Hence the term the “Scottish cringe”. Very, very sad even for the English whom it has allows to imagine they still have an empire and importance, the level… Read more »

wardropper
Reader

Bill, of course you are right about Scottish inventiveness. I am very well aware of the magnificent individuals in Scottish history. My point is about Scotland as a voting nation, and in that respect the Scottish don’t appear to me to be any better informed than the English. Assuming the independence vote was not fixed, I would cite that as an example. That was really a chance for something new to happen. Otherwise I certainly don’t subscribe to the Scottish stereotyping of which many are guilty.

manfromatlan
Reader

Some anti-Scots sentiment here, but there’s always the Declaration of Arbroath of 1320; “For as long as but a hundred of us remain alive, never will we on any conditions be brought under English rule. It is not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom — for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself.”. My series of articles on Great Britain listed here based on the EU referendum chart and 1707 Acts of Union (warning, Astrology) Brexit, What? https://manfromatlan.blogspot.com/2017/04/brexit-what.html Conclusion: I don’t have to remind you can always cancel… Read more »

john2o2o
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The Scots also have a reputation for bigotry.

Don’t worry, my mother is Scottish. She – being a Catholic – knows full well that what I say is true.

Robbobbobin
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Robbobbobin

“The Scots also have a reputation for bigotry.” My Scottish paternal grandmother was one of the least bigoted people I have ever met*. Quite the opposite of my maternal family, a people chosen by God to be the genetic dustbin of all the failed miscegenations in human history, who all have an intense hostility both to any other of themselves and to anyone resembling any of themselves (in itself, the explanation). *Though she did hold a few pseudo-xenophobic prejudices – insisting, for instance, that there is no sound more stirring, life-enhancing and romantic than the sound of bagpipes across the… Read more »

Bill McLean
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Bill McLean

John2o2o – I too am of Scottish Catholic background but , and with the greatest of respect to your mother, it does not make me omniscient. I am now in my 70s and when I was young ,bigotry, used and encouraged by British nationalism, was fairly common in Scotland, although I have to say in all truth it never affected me as I could never take religion or Britain seriously. Religious bigotry in Scotland is now nowhere near what it was fifty years ago despite efforts by unionist politicians (mostly Tory) to fan the flames. Since my youth, and having… Read more »

reinertorheit
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reinertorheit

[[ when I was young ,bigotry, used and encouraged by British nationalism, was fairly common ]]

Glad to see you are keeping the old tradition going, Bill.

manfromatlan
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Hugh O'Neill
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Hugh O'Neill

Being of Irish Catholic roots, though 3 generations of living in Scotland, my prejudiced perspective suggests that both the negative and positive comments about Scotland have weight. Scotland, from the time of Columba until the Reformation. The Reformation was the excuse for a power grab: it split the country and Mary Queen of Scots was thrown to the Tudor wolves. That Mary Stuart’s son James VI of Scotland became James I of England proves that his mother’s claim to the English throne was legitimate – but unacceptable because of her religion. RLS’s “Jeckyll & Hyde” has a split personality which… Read more »

mohandeer
Reader

Of passing inteerest: “Guilty until innocent? Guardian columnist calls UK govt ‘clueless’ for blaming Russia for poisonings.Edited time: 7 Jul, 2018 08:27.Guilty until innocent? Guardian columnist calls UK govt ‘clueless’ for blaming Russia for poisonings © Henry Nicholls/ Reuters It is a basic tenet of British law that the accused are innocent until proven guilty. And yet when it’s Russia in the dock, that seems irrelevant. Top Tory ministers have squarely accused the Kremlin of the Novichok poisonings in Wiltshire, and the mainstream media has been awash with unknown sources and so-called “experts” claiming they have reasons to believe Russia… Read more »

HB
Reader
HB

I LOVE Vasily Livanov – one of the most decent human beings, a superb actor, a legendary Sherlock Holmes! Wonderful letter. Take my hat off, bravo!

June A. Van Orman
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June A. Van Orman

There is not much left to say, as all has been so eloquently stated. Thank you Vasily Livanov for this heart-felt and true letter. The Guardian refused to publish it. The truth is lost in England and she is no longer England as I know her, governed by those who no longer care for Patriotism. The many decades of propaganda and demonizing Russia is a Red Herring. What are they really hiding?

reinertorheit
Reader
reinertorheit

Of course the Guardian refused to publish it. How could ideas and impressions so far at odds with the NATO agenda of Viner & Tisdall share a page with the scrawlings of Cohen and Nougayrède?

Hope
Reader
Hope

Thank you, Vasily Livanov, for this calm analysis of the long, vicious campaign to mould the minds of the West into mindless hatred of the Russian people. I am very moved by the grace and wisdom of your response, speaking to British people directly about that campaign, and about what should be the relations between your two countries, and between Russia and the West generally.
May God grant that this letter be shared widely, and that your wisdom prevails.

manfromatlan
Reader

And a striking commentary on the Guardian editors who refused to publish it!

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

The Right exist in a world of hatred-class hatred, racist hatred, misogyny, inter-generational hatred, sectarian hatred, and hatred of one another and themselves. A ‘society’ dominated by the Right, as the UK has been forever, is nothing but a maelstrom of hatreds, dragging the citizens down to Hell. If not Russia, it would be someone else.

john2o2o
Reader

To be fair, many sections of the modern Left are not a whole lot better. They’re just more conceited.

As for myself, the only thing I am sure about is that I am anti-war and anti-imperialist. On some matters I am right wing and on others left.

Bryan
Reader
Bryan

Thank you Mr.Livanov. I’m a carpenter from Canada who’s lived here since the 80’s.If I can see the anti Russian sentiment being pressed by the western media I assume anyone can. My reasoning being I’m “joe average”.I’m not sure who the British media and government represent but it’s certainly not me nor I think the average British person.
Take heart, I think you have more friends here than foes.

manfromatlan
Reader

Funny sort of world where most people world-wide support the Russian government than the UK’s, and indeed bear the Russian people no animus, but look at your self-destructive bloody-minded ways with alarm. I mean, Brexit, fake anti-Semitism allegations against the one party that opposes neo-liberal policies, xenophobia, your govt’s poodle
relationship with America and Israel?

Admin
Reader

Brexit was opposed by a majority of the neoliberal establishment and financial institutions. The idea remaining in the IMF controlled free trade zone EU is an expression of people power seems like yet another propaganda meme.

bevin
Reader
bevin

You are correct. The real fight against the referendum result, which was a rejection of the EU “…Today, the European Union offers the fullest realization of the neoliberal political vision. There is no sovereign people of Europe; the authority of European institutions rests on a body of law and treaties. The European Union is not a nation, but it is not simply an agreement among nations either. Unlike international agreements, European regulations are directly binding on individuals and not only on the government signing them. In many areas, European regulations and authorities don’t merely constrain, but actually replace, their national… Read more »

bevin
Reader
bevin

I forgot to add
“You are correct. The real fight against the referendum result, which was a rejection of the EU is about to begin. The May plan is to preserve all the important parts of the EU in its ‘soft brexit’. And A substantial part of the Labour PLP will join the government to ensure that this neo-liberal’s wet dream continues to stand in the way of nationalisation and socialism.”

Ian Beeby
Reader
Ian Beeby

The British people are not anti Russian it is only this very extreme so called Government. 99% of the British don’t believe in the so called nerve agent attacks. But the media refuse to enter into sensible discussions about it. When I tried to phone my local Radio station I was blocked from calling , probably by our so called security forces.
Keep up the important work that you are doing.
Cheers
Ian

ZigZag Wanderer
Reader
ZigZag Wanderer

One word …… Oxbridge.

reinertorheit
Reader
reinertorheit

Oxbridge WHAT. exactly? A bunch of privileged numpties studying Classical Literature In Translation, because mumsy and dadsy paid for their places? ‘Oxbridge’ that produced Johnson, Gove, and Rees-Mogg??

Keep dreaming that your poxy little nation is a global player. Play up, play up, jolly good fellow, eh? Then round to the Presbytery after Evensong, to toast crumpets by the fire?? In your sad little Merchant-Ivory makebelieve world

reinertorheit
Reader
reinertorheit

Eight people who still don’t realise that ‘Oxbridge’ is what cements the Johnsons and Rees-Moggs in place.

manfromatlan
Reader

I thought that was molesting dead pigs?

manfromatlan
Reader

Used to be a den of Commies who infiltrated MI-6? Time flies.

Coram Deo
Reader
Coram Deo

“We have no beef with the people of Britain” Dear Mr Livanov, Thank you for your gracious letter. Please be advised, sir, that neither do the people of the UK have any ‘beef’ with Russia – the country, its people or its politicians. In my experience President Putin and FM Lavrov are held in the highest esteem in the UK as worldclass statesmen. The UK shares the same problem as Russia – namely, UK politicians, the BBC and dead journalism. The people of the UK are quite aware of what its politicians are doing – and we DO NOT approve.… Read more »

Roberto
Reader

The often trotted out spectre of McCarthyism is actually the inverse of what is happening in recent years vis a vis the West vs Russia. Today, demonstrably false, and even ridiculous charges against the Russian federation and its leader are made, solely with the objective of demonising them for political purposes, ideally regime change, and most of the popular media are fully on board, seemingly speaking with One Voice. Conflating the Russian federation and the Soviet Union is the preferred device employed. No matter how outrageous the claims have been, the leadership of Russia has responded in a composed, rational,… Read more »

Gary Weglarz
Reader
Gary Weglarz

Roberto – “the US government was permeated by Soviet spies all the way up to and including the White House, and they were enabled and protected by the officials that should have defended the US from such treason., No less responsible was the overwhelmingly Soviet-compromised leftist media.” Wow! I can only assume we’ve been living on different planets for some time now Roberto and that one of us has only recently dropped in to planet earth and unfortunately perhaps stumbled onto some reading materials from the old John Birch Society. I deduce that by the term – “Soviet spies” –… Read more »

Roberto
Reader

‘Soviet spies’, refers to Soviet spies, not people of particular persuasions, some of whom may also incidentally have been Soviet spies. Though we digress from the theme of Mr Livanov’s letter, you have brought up a point wanting response. From outer space to Earth, nothing to to with spies, just observing how popular public personae may differ from historical actions. Einstein’s letter to Roosevelt, proposing development of nuclear weapons, advocating deploying them in harbours of cities to destroy the surrounding area, presumably occupied by civilians. The development of nuclear weapons was later initiated by FDR, with the Manhattan Project, diligently… Read more »

bevin
Reader
bevin

“… the only victim of McCarthyism was McCarthy, who ended up paying with his life. Yes, the US government was permeated by Soviet spies all the way up to and including the White House, and they were enabled and protected by the officials that should have defended the US from such treason., No less responsible was the overwhelmingly Soviet-compromised leftist media….” This really is astonishingly stupid. there were few, if any, spies in the US government, unless by a spy one means a citizen with a critical mind who will on occasion differ from the official policies of the government.… Read more »

Roberto
Reader

As Aristotle said of Plato: “Dear is Plato, but dearer is the truth”.

>
Lattimore? Really?
Q.E.D.

Roberto
Reader

As Aristotle said of Plato: “Dear is Plato, but dearer is the truth” … and incidentally, more difficult to accept.

>
Lattimore? Really?
Q.E.D.

ThomPrentice (@ThomPrentice)
Reader

The Lowest Infamy of The Guardian is in its rejection of publishing this greatest, most significant letter of the 21st Century. Thank you to Off-Guardian for getting it out.

binra
Reader

Well it isn’t between ‘Britain’ and Russia so much as those who have overbearing influence upon British institutions of governance . I watched a documentary on Napoleon last night. The British Mercantile Establishment bankrolled coalition after coalition of European monarchies to put down Napoleon (and the Revolution) as an active embodiment of breaking the ‘world order’ and the industrial development of a land based European influence that would seriously threaten the then British hegemony as both the dominant naval and trading power that also led in industrial development. Today. The global domination by an international cartel of financial and corporate… Read more »

BigB
Reader
BigB

I care not a jot for the ‘facts’ of the latest Amesbury incident: they were ideologically predetermined to suit a cross party agenda. That agenda (as Vasily states) is the vilification of Russia: and the demonised Shadow persona is in the particular form of Vladimir Putin. This is a personalised animus. Why cross party: because I see the convenient ideological comfort veil surrounding the person of Jeremy Corbyn: isolating him from any part of the vilification agenda and scapegoating the ‘government’ …a hypothetical singularity from which Jeremy is perceptually excluded. Some timely remembrances from the original Skripal provocation (of which… Read more »

manfromatlan
Reader

Likewise, in the US Bernie Sanders caves in to collective hysteria and self-censorship.

HB
Reader
HB

Shame that the British people are not generally aware that Navalny is widely detested in Russia, as is another recent female presidential candidate, they are not aware that many Russian so-called opposition figures and dissidents, who are treated as heroes in the UK, are in fact scum, bandits and murderers.

reinertorheit
Reader
reinertorheit

Navalny’s outbursts of ‘Russia for the ethnic Russians’ don’t get much play in The Graun, do they? He’d seem too much like Gobby Robinson, if they did.

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

The USA ALWAYS prefers fascist types as its pet stooges. As well as the vermin Navalny (portrayed here in Austfailure as a hero) you also have the White Knights, similar fascists, in Belarus. As the Zionist thug Gershman who heads the US NED operation to subvert societies around the world, asserted to Congress recently, they play the ‘long game’ in sabotaging societies and installing compliant stooges. And these are the scum who complain of non-existent ‘Russian meddling’ in their depraved society.

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

Habermas is such an Imperial courtier, such a risible nonentity, that one almost pities him. The ruling regimes in capitalist democracies are elected dictatorships, that serve the rich only. That much is so plainly self-evident that the myths created to hide it must be contemptible, but they are also invariably laughable in their non-reality. ‘Elections’ under capitalism are farces. Voluntary voting applies in most jurisdictions, with falling turn-outs, particularly in the USA, but obedience to the ‘laws’ produced by ‘democracy’ is, of course, compulsory . In many states, like the UK, ‘first past the post’ delivers ‘landslides’ on small votes… Read more »

Francis Lee
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Francis Lee

What has to be borne in mind about Corbyn is that he is the latest ex-social democratic to surrender to the Liberal International – the Libintern and its economic programme – neoliberalism, and its political programme – neoconservatism. The centre-left (including the Greens) have virtually collapsed all over Europe. The German SPD saw a historic bad result in the parliamentary elections. Its sister parties in France, the Netherlands and the Czech Republic have even sunk to single digit shares of the vote. European social democracy is fighting for its political survival: since the new millennium, its vote share has fallen… Read more »

mohandeer
Reader

@Francis Lee
Thanks for this depressing information. BTW, Blair was and always will be a far right, self serving, narcisistic, power/glory hungry red Tory and absolutely nothing to do with the original Labour Party which was a democratic socialist party until he got his hands on it.

bevin
Reader
bevin

” Blairism is firmly entrenched, particularly in the Parliamentary Labour party. So the NATO ‘socialism’ of the Labour party and Corbyn doesn’t surprise me in the least.” The key here is the first sentence, with which nobody would disagree. And which only the democratic reform of the party can remedy. Where you are entirely wrong is in identifying Blair as a Social Democrat and Blairism-which is an unashamedly neo-liberal project- as a deviation from socialism. It is nothing of the sort. Corbyn represents the old Bevanite tradition in the Labour party, far from being a NATO socialist he represents that… Read more »

mohandeer
Reader

@Bevin.
Your arument has some merit regarding the home front but so much Corbyn stood for, he himself has ridden rough shod over, to the point he really doesn’t stand for anything very much at all. NATO, Trident and back pedalling on his economic promises, now the wholly bigoted attack against Russia, how many examples of U turning do you need to have?

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

If Corbyn ever came to power and attempted a mildly social-democrat, anti neo-liberal parasitism and anything but utter craven obeisance to the USA and Israel Government, he would be destroyed. Either economically with runs on the pound, disinvestment etc or by an Establishment putsch, open or covert, or physical liquidation, possibly disguised as an acute illness. As a member of the Five Eyes plus Israel global Imperial forces, the UK can only exist as a member of the Imperium. Meanwhile, the ecological Holocaust hurries near, ever quicker and pitiless.

reinertorheit
Reader
reinertorheit

But of course, the whole idea of Corbyn is that he should never come to power. He is Controlled Opposition. The remote control device is in the hands of Likud, and he responds to it very much as poor Kyrano did in ‘Thunderbirds’, when remotely summoned by his Master to act against whatever feeble self-will he could still muster.

Big B
Reader
Big B

Let me turn from the threat to Britain to the threat posed to allies in NATO, eastern Europe and the security of the world as a result of rising tensions in recent years. Now more than ever, it is vital that we stress to our European counterparts that their support is important in the wake of the Salisbury attack, that we wish to work with them to maximise the power of collective sanctions against violations of international law—whether from Russia or any other state—and that our commitment to such collective action will not be diminished by Brexit. Similarly, now more… Read more »

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

It is easy to list the various individual Evils of the ruling Western psychopaths, in politics, economics, geo-strategy etc. They are Evil nonentities selected for their ability to serve a death-machine, neo-liberal capitalism, that only exists to enrich the few and impoverish the many while setting them at each others throats. They represent moral, intellectual and spiritual Evil, but also power, power that is besotted by destruction and murder. Yet, the corollary to rule by an Evil capitalist elite, ecological destruction, is more or less ignored, despite the rising (at last!) chorus of terror and despair from those in the… Read more »

Big B
Reader
Big B

These, and housing and education are the big issues and Corbyn is quite right not to allow them to be obscured by irrelevances and stunts cobbled together by the spooks and their colleagues in the media.

Those “irrelevances and stunts” have real world implications for some:
https://www.rt.com/news/431992-ukraine-independence-allegiance-hitler/

Housing and education need not be a subsidiary contingency on support for NATO and neo-Nazism. They could and should be primary and uncontingent priorities – or is that too radical a proposal?

Francis Lee
Reader
Francis Lee

The fact of the matter, as Thucydides discovered, was that you can’t be an imperialist state and a democratic or let alone a socialist one. The UK has always been an imperialist state and is now a subordinate member of an imperialist bloc led by the United States. Do remind me of whose side the Labour government of 1945 took in the Greek civil war. In what was the most left wing of subsequent Labour governments their attachment to NATO imperialism remained unquestionable, as does it role as a centre for global finance. The model for the European social democracies,… Read more »

BigB
Reader
BigB

Francis: your comment is spot on and heaped in erudition, as always. According to Jack Rasmus, the UK is a wholly owned shadow bank asset – which I can well believe. The City of London Corporation is the dominant force in Parliamentary policy making. They even have a permanent representative – the ‘Remembrancer’ – who sits behind the Speaker. Tony Blair was elected, in part, on the hollow promise of reforming the City. Instead, he let them reform themselves – giving the various Guilds and Corporations votes for ‘carpet squares’ – depending on how many employees they have within the… Read more »

Kathy
Reader
Kathy

Ah yes, The shadowy kingdom within a kingdom ,The City of London Corporation. There within lies so much of the worlds troubles. Has this City ever released the claws it forced in to the underbelly of the USA after its independence from the UK.or any where else it historically controlled. It manages to function under the radar on so many levels growing ever stronger. A real strong hold for the money lenders fleeing the temple.

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

One of the great mistakes the serfs make is to not face the fact that the ruling parasites HATE all others, particularly the class and economic enemy ie the 99% of ‘useless eaters’. They positively ENJOY treating the poor and weak with cruelty and savage indifference, and nothing pleases them more than slaughtering millions of the global untermenschen, particularly children. The refusal to acknowledge the diabolical Evil of the Western over-class, because of moral cowardice and willing ignorance, has proven our great existential flaw, one that has delivered us right to the Gates of Hell.

candideschmyles
Reader

You are absolutely correct. The nature of power over the masses is indeed characterised by the pleasure they get from inflicting new deprivations, cruelties and hardships on the masses. Nowhere has this been more evident than in the justification and implementation of austerity policies that have led to perhaps a million earĺy deaths and countless personal tradgedies in the UK. What is striking is that the measurement indexes clearly show villified Russia to be on the mirror opposite trajectory. And it should not be forgotten that it is peasant president Putin working against elite corruption and channeling sovreign wealth to… Read more »

Savorywill
Reader
Savorywill

I actually wasn’t aware that Corbyn had taken such a terrible position on the obviously fictitious Skirpal incident. Initially he seemed to express that there was no clear evidence that Russia was involved, but he caved to pressure, I guess and gave the ridiculous speech you quoted from here. Are there no proper people left in British politics (as George Galloway is no longer there)?

Bill McLean
Reader
Bill McLean

No!

mohandeer
Reader

@Savorywill. I have been a member of the Labour Party and momentum and I too was a fortnight behind the news since I won’t watch our corrupt media. I was disgusted when I finally learned the content of Corbyn’s fawning speech. As far as I am concerned he has betrayed everything he supposedly stood for and as such will not countenance his views henceforth. It was probably BigB who put the transcript out to social media, but there are others who had access to it. Galloway was a loss as was Wedgie and there are no others to replace them… Read more »

ZigZag Wanderer
Reader
ZigZag Wanderer

Likewise , I am somewhat shocked at Corbyns’ response to the hysterical witch hunt that played out in the Commons on March 26 . I was reasonably happy with his response to the assault on him by the Jewish mafia but did not expect him to cave in so spectacularly on this issue. I live near to Porton Down so GE voting is pointless as a Tory is ALWAYS the winner here due to the large numbers of Army/MOD/Intelligence people living in the area. They’ve all got a spring in their step these days as Gavin is shaking the magic… Read more »

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

Corbyn’s reaction to the Zionist lynch-mob was, in my opinion, despicable, cowardly, and treacherous-just how the Zionists like them. Stabbing Wadsworth and Livingstone in the back won’t save him either, when the Zionists return for the next round.

mark
Reader
mark

He has been tamed now by the Board of Deputies who were the prime mover of the smears against him.

iafantomo
Reader

“People at the top of the British government have been talking down to Russians as some kind of ‘lesser people’ in a language that invokes the less flattering pages of the not so distant British imperial history.” And in Britain we are coming to realise that they talk down to us in the same way.

reinertorheit
Reader
reinertorheit

But in fact they don’t. Russians – as this letter shows – not only display the finest manners in discussing the peoples of other nations – they genuinely hold them in high respect. There has been no ‘talking down’ at all.

JudyJ
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JudyJ

Such an eloquent, beautifully composed and dignified open letter expressing superbly what many of us are thinking.

Michael Hartley
Reader
Michael Hartley

“Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.”
The Enemy of the UK lies within the UK – God Bless Russia – God Bless Vladimir Putin – God Bless the Russian People.

vexarb
Reader

“I have contacted the enemy, and he is us”. — Pogo Possum

Guy THORNTON
Reader
Guy THORNTON

I spent the last week on business near Baden-Baden. I hadn’t realised that it had such a historic Russian connection – the place is full of middle class Russians. I met about a dozen…and found them all to be …funny, intelligent, cynical, well-mannered, etc…just the sort of people you want to have a drink with. They all appeared politely bemused by the UK & USA governments….although several of them made the same remark…”the thing with USA is there is no-one with any memories of fighting a war on American soil….whereas in Russia and Germany every family has these memories…which is… Read more »

john2o2o
Reader

Excellent post, sir.

BDS
Reader
BDS

“Americans see war through the eyes of Hollywood and Rambo.”

and through:
– vacuous exceptionalism
– spilling the blood of brown skin people
– arms manufacturers’ profits

The quickest way to achieve peace is to close US embassies everywhere permanently, and quickly.

uncle tungsten
Reader
uncle tungsten

And after closing the US embassies prohibit or tax all foreign investment banks.

mark
Reader
mark

Bombing Brown People is good for them, apparently.

physicsandmathsrevision
Reader

People are waking up to the fact that there is no enemy “out there2. The enemy is and always has been right here at home. The overclass who pull the strings of elected so-called “democratic” governments. Here’s hoping Putin is of some kind of different ilk, a genuine friend of his own people who seeks stability and economic progress within with desire for domination/occupation/theft re external states.
Our real bosses (masters of international finance) are obviously the very devil.

reinertorheit
Reader
reinertorheit

But it keeps dear Mr Stoltenberg in a job, doesn’t it? Along with Gavin Williamson, Britain’s former door-to-door fireplace salesman turned dealer in Weapons Of Mass Destruction. Not to mention the British Ambassador in Moscow, Mr Laurie Bristow – whose public biography on the Embassy website boasts of his graduation from the ‘NATO Academy Of Defence’. Whom does His Excellency serve in Moscow? Since all Consular matters have now been hived off to private contractor, VFS Services Ltd.

candideschmyles
Reader

I wish I ßhared your confidence over this “waking up”. Seems to me Mr &Mrs Muggle of Muggleton Road, Muggletown and their transgenderised organic iphone operating hardware, (You can no longer call them chilďren), are petrified of even glancing at the truth.

Dave m
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Dave m

At least Russians have the sense to look at their government’s actions and check the facts, where available(!)
My U.K. lot are a total embarassment- When Corbyn suggested we wait for some proof re Skripals, he was shot down, not just by his enemies, who are legion, but also his own troops!!
If QE11 had the power of Vaj the impaler here in Thailand, she could have May and her cabinet taken out and shot…

vexarb
Reader

@Dave M. As BigB consistently and meticulously points out, when it comes to dolloping out knee-jerk anti-Russian codswallop, Corbyn sings from the same hymn-sheet as St.Theresa. The only difference, StTheresa slops it out of a gin bottle, JC from a teapot.

Kathy
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Kathy

So well put Vexarb.

BigB
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BigB

Hear, hear! 🙂

Dmitriy
Reader
Dmitriy

I recommend everyone to watch this mini-series “Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson” in 1979. Probably, you can find it with an English translation.

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

On Youtube-I just watched The Speckled Band, or, as the sub-titles said, the ‘Motley Ribbon’.

Ray Raven
Reader
Ray Raven

Had a good laugh.
“The Motley Ribbon”
Lost in translation methinks,