All posts tagged: russia

Bleak See on the Black Sea

Prof. Anis H. Bajrektarević Following the latest events in and around the Black Sea, two old questions are reappearing. Both are inviting us for a repeated elaboration: If a Monroe doctrine (about the hemispheric security exclusivity) is recognised at one corner of the globe, do we have a moral right or legal ground to negate it at the other corner? This irrespectively from the fact that Gorbachev-Yeltsin Russia unilaterally renounced the similar explication – the Brezhnev doctrine about irreversibility of communist gains. Clearly, the ‘might-makes-right’ as a conduct in international relations cannot be selectively accepted. Either it is acknowledged to all who can effectively self-prescribe and maintain such a monopoly of coercion, or it is absolutely (revoked and) condemned as contrary to behaviour among the civilised nations. Next to the first question is a right of pre-emption. It is apparent that within the Black Sea theatre, Russia acts in an unwilling, pre-emptive and rather defensive mode. That is not a regime change action on the other continent following the rational of extra security demand by …

Haftar and Sarraj on the way to Libyan settlement

Firas Samuri Another meeting on the Libyan settlement was held in Palermo, southern Italy, November 12-13. The leaders of the warring factions, EU and UN representatives, as well as the parties concerned, took part in the summit. After two days of intense talks, the participants agreed to arrange a new conference in Libya by the beginning of the next year. It’s expected the date of the upcoming presidential and parliamentary elections would be announced there. On the one hand, the result of the current meeting on Libya is conditional as the talks in Palermo haven’t brought something specific for the Libyans. Since the politicians meet and seek for the ways of resolving the crisis, the nation continues to suffer from the consequence of foreign intervention and Gaddafi overthrow in 2011. On the other hand, Libyan National Army (LNA) commander Khalifa Haftar who was in Italy as a private person and met the conference participants on the sidelines. Haftar and Sarraj held an extensive private discussion during the informal talks of Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, …

Manufacturing Truth

CJ Hopkins If you’re one of the millions of human beings who, despite a preponderance of evidence to the contrary, still believe there is such a thing as “the truth,” you might not want to read this essay. Seriously, it can be extremely upsetting when you discover that there is no “truth” … or rather, that what we’re all conditioned to regard as “truth” from the time we are children is just the product of a technology of power, and not an empirical state of being. Humans, upon first encountering this fact, have been known to freak completely out and start jabbering about the “Word of God,” or “the immutable laws of quantum physics,” and run around burning other people at the stake or locking them up and injecting them with Thorazine. I don’t want to be responsible for anything like that, so consider this your trigger warning. OK, now that that’s out of the way, let’s take a look at how “truth” is manufactured. It’s actually not that complicated. See, the “truth” is … …

The Rehabilitation of Robert Mueller

The “Resistance” – the loose affiliation of liberals, progressives and neo-conservatives dedicated to opposing Donald Trump – is NOT a grass-roots movement. They don’t speak for the everyman or the poor or the oppressed. They are a distraction, nothing more. A parlor game. The face to Trump’s heel. The Resistance is the voice of the Deep State – Pro-war, pro-globalisation, pro-Imperialism. It just hides its true face behind a mask of “progressive values”.

The Emerging World Order

Eric Zuesse The Post-World-War-II world order was dominated by the one WWII major combatant that had only 0.32% of its population (the lowest percentage) killed by the war: the United States. The Soviet Union’s comparable number killed by the war was the highest — it was 13.7% — 42.8 times higher than America’s. The US was the main force that defeated Japan and so won WWII in Asia. The USSR, however, was the main force that defeated Germany and so won WWII in Europe. The USSR suffered vastly more than did the US to achieve its victory. In addition to suffering 42.8 times the number of war-deaths than did US, the USSR’s financial expenditures invested in the conflict, as calculated by Jan Ludvik, were 4.8 times higher than were America’s financial expenditures on the war. Thus, at the war’s end, the Soviet Union was exhausted and in a much weaker condition than it had been before the war. By contrast, the US, having had none of the war’s battles occurring on its territory, was (by …

The Poison Paradox – Who Knew?

David Macilwain NOVICHOK! It just won’t go away – even though it was never there! The Sun reports that twenty vehicles that “came into contact with the killer substance” have now been dismantled and buried in a toxic waste site. Suspend not disbelief yet – at the thought of scrappies in Hazmat suits cutting up police cars. Such Alice in Wonderland deception was nicely detailed by Rob Slane in his latest dissection of the Skripal hoax, pointing specifically at the crucial flaws in the “door-handle theory”. Slane systematically destroys the UK government’s assertion that the Skripals’ door-handle was the “source of the poisoning”, but without quite following through with the argument – that there was no such poisoning with Novichok at all, – as has been well established from other details of the event. In fact, as the UK government rests its whole case for Novichok poisoning on that door-handle, and rests its whole case against Russia on her supposed responsibility for smearing the nerve agent on it, the cutting of this Achilles Heel could …

Building Bridges vs. Buying Bombs

Eric Zuesse China’s “Belt and Road Initiative” is famous as an extension of their domestic infrastructure investments, but Russia is also investing heavily in infrastructure. Both countries need to do it in order to improve the future for their respective populations, and both Governments have avoided the Western development model of going heavily into debt in order to pay for creating and maintaining infrastructure. Both are, in fact, exceptionally low-debt Governments. According to the “Global Debt Clock” at Economist, China has a public debt/GDP of 17.7%, and Russia’s is 8.0%. For comparison, America’s is 93.6%. (Others are: Germany 85.8%, Spain 91.2%, Italy 122.6%, Greece 147.1%, India 54.2%, Pakistan 47.0%, and Brazil 55.0%.) The United States isn’t going into public debt in order to finance building or maintenance of infrastructure, but instead to finance expansions of its military, which is already (and by far) the world’s largest (in terms of its costs, but not of its numbers of troops). While the U.S. Government now spends around half of the world’s military expenditures and plans to conquer …

Midterms, Media & the Ever-Rolling Carnival of Distraction

The US mid-terms happened this week – you probably noticed. There were maps everywhere, people talking about a blue-wave or a red tsunami or…something. None of it really made much sense.

And in the end, it doesn’t really matter.

For all the impact it will have on the way the world is run, these elections are as meaningful as voting for who wins Celebrity Big Brother or filling out a customer service feedback form at an off-brand coffee chain.

WATCH: Who Are These Russians And Why Do We Hate Them?

In his film, Regis Tremblay examines the history of US-Russian relations, talks to ordinary Russian people, deconstructs propaganda and attempts to answer the question – Who are these Russians? And Why Do We Hate Them? The escalating downturn of US relations with Russia has made the world a more dangerous place than at any time during the Cold War, including during the Cuban Missile Crisis. This film explores the many reasons why the US foreign policy establishment since the end of World War II hates all things Russian. With the exception of John Kennedy who sought to end nuclear weapons and to seek peace with Russia, every president since has used Russia as a threat to American interests, security and Democracy. Is Putin a thug and an assassin? Or he is a great, patriotic leader of a country that was nearly destroyed by President George Herbert Walker Bush’s CIA good old boys, Bill Clinton and the CIA asset Boris Yeltsin? But, perhaps the greatest fear is that Russia has regained its superpower status and because …

Spooks and the Masked Media

There are innocent and guilty actors populating the American stage. Unlike the naïve children who joyously revel in the costumes they don for Halloween, unaware as they are of the death fears they exorcise, the corporate mainstream media wear their masks year-round, while they consciously abet the United States government, its intelligence agencies, and its allies in exercising their God-given right to inflict death on people around the world, including many innocent children.

Desperate West Bashing Russia & China “Left and Right”….literally

Andre Vltchek The insanity and vileness of Western anti-Chinese propaganda used to make some of my Chinese friends cry late at night. But things are changing. The lunacy of what is said and written about China (and Russia, of course), in the US and Europe, is now clearly reflecting frustration and the bad manners of sore losers. One could almost be inclined to pity the Western empire, if only it wasn’t so violently murderous. The Empire’s propagandists are pitying nobody – they are now shooting like maniacs, but without any coherent plan. Various Western ‘experts’ and journalists cannot really agree on the basics: ‘what is really wrong with China’. But they are paid extremely well to find new and newer skeletons in the huge Chinese closets, and so they are constantly competing with each other, looking for the juiciest and the most scandalous stories. Often it appears that it pays to assume that absolutely everything is flawed with the most populous, and on top of it, Communist (with the ‘Chinese characteristics, of course) country on …

Bellingcat outed by the Independent

Philip Roddis The West’s war on Syria, and rapidly heating cold war on Russia, have involved extensive use of smear. Of unsubstantiated or even disproved allegations repeated in our not-so free mediauntil even those who rightly or wrongly – usually wrongly – deem themselves critical thinkers assume, no-smoke-without-fire  fashion, there must be truth to them. This conclusion is seldom drawn by the conscious mind. That’s not how propaganda works: witness on the one hand that near universal belief that ‘adverts don’t sway me in the slightest’;  on the other those misguided capitalists who, oblivious to our immunity to it, continue to throw vast sums at that propaganda form we call commercial advertising. Putin – my, how we feted his predecessor, the drunken Yeltsin, as he oversaw Russia’s descent to basket case status while Wall Street drooled over the spoils! – and Assad feature hardly less frequently on our screens and front pages than do ads for new cars and sofas. The stakes are higher, though[1], which explains two aspects of their demonisation not shared by commercials. One is …

Further down the rabbit hole with Eliot, Boshirov, Petrov, his grandma & all

Bellingcat today released the second part of their “investigation” into the alleged real identities of Ruslan Boshirov and Alexander Petrov, the two Russians accused of attempting to murder Sergey Skripal. We offer some preliminary thoughts and open the subject up for discussion.

US Switching to Ukraine as Location to Start World War III

Eric Zuesse The United States Government is now treating Ukraine as if it were a NATO member, and on September 27th donated to Ukraine two warships for use against Russia. This is the latest indication that the U.S. is switching to Ukraine as the locale to start World War III, and from which the nuclear war is to be sparked against Russia, which borders Ukraine. Here is why Syria is no longer the U.S. alliance’s preferred choice as a place to start WW III: On September 4th, U.S. President Donald Trump publicly threatened Syria, Iran and Russia that if they exterminated the jihadists in Syria’s only remaining jihadist-controlled province, Idlib, then the U.S. might launch a full-scale invasion against Syria, Iran and Russia in Syria. Either the U.S. or Russia would then quickly escalate to nuclear war so as not to lose in Syria — that would be the conventional-war start to World War III. The leaders of Russia, Iran, Turkey, and Syria (Putin, Rouhani, Erdogan, and Assad), agreed in two meetings, one on September …

In the land of fake news is the spin master king?

One MI6 shill selling the work of another just sums up the level of factual journalism at the Guardian. Tutisicecream Not only was Pippa Crerar one of the Guardian’s deputy editors called out for her pious tweet from the Labour conference writing: “Corbyn criticises some parts of British media, claiming they “smear the powerless, not take on the powerful”. As a journalist, makes me very uncomfortable to hear him leading attack on our free press. Dangerous, Trumpian territory.” Corbyn criticises some parts of British media, claiming they “smear the powerless, not take on the powerful”. As a journalist, makes me very uncomfortable to hear him leading attack on our free press. Dangerous, Trumpian territory. — Pippa Crerar (@PippaCrerar) 26 September 2018 The comment got her loads of flack from the general twittering public for her attempted smear, but then today we get another implausible piece of spin from Luke Harding. The hubris at the Guardian is palpable. The reason I am writing connecting these two points is to demonstrate just how bad the standards of …

MI6 Will Be So Proud: Urban & Harding Continue The Ludicrous Skripal Narrative

Bay Kurley, DailyShocker.news Mark Urban is releasing a book on Skripal. He didn’t tell anyone he had met him during 2017 for that purpose mind you, not even his BBC bosses, until forced to, the day after Skripal was allegedly poisoned. Which would explain the intimate knowledge he demonstrated on Newsnight that evening, 5th March. It’s even stranger that Mark didn’t tell his bosses earlier, when he MUST have been aware that Skripal still met his “old” MI6 handler in Salisbury. Urban must have been aware that this handler, who was an old tanker mate of Urban, was linked to Orbis, the company Christopher Steele ran. Seems a HUGE link, to a HUGE global story, to not tell your bosses at one of the world’s largest news agencies? He didn’t admit to the public he had met Skripal until July 2018. FOUR months after Skirpal was “novichoked”. Yes, I met Sergei Skripal a few times in 2017 while working on a book project. He's a remarkable man with a dry sense of humour and a …

“Chepiga” and “Boshirov” – what does Bellingcat actually tell us?

The alleged “citizen journalist” website, Bellingcat has, of course, recently published the results of its latest piece of alleged research on the “real identity” of one of the men accused (so far without any evidence) of attempting to poison Sergey Skripal and his daughter back in March 2018.

We’ve talked about Bellingcat, and its supposed founder, Eliot Higgins, before on OffG. Bellingcat’s work has been revealed on countless occasions to be both incredibly amateurish and incredibly biased toward a certain extreme neocon/neoliberal agenda. Whether Higgins himself knows it or not, his outfit is almost certainly a front run by various intel agencies for the purpose of disseminating low grade, and often fake or corrupted, data that the agencies and associated governments do not want to be associated with directly.

Operation Nina – the Novichok Hoax

There’s no shortage of commentators in the Western mainstream telling us how Russia planned its attack on the Skripals, or how Syria planned its chemical weapons massacres. Anyone who expresses a different opinion from this accepted narrative stands condemned and belittled as a “conspiracy theorist”. But the criticism works both ways – for us it is they who are the conspiracy theorists, as well as the conspirators.

Craig Murray: the Guardian tells “deliberate lies” about Assange and alleged Russia ties

On Friday September 21 the Guardian published a piece titled “Revealed: Russia’s secret plan to help Assange escape from UK”. It was authored by Stephanie Kirchgaessner, Dan Collyns and our very own pulp plagiarist Luke Harding. Even without Murray’s subsequent revelations, there was a lot to be concerned about both in the headline and the article itself.

NYT Admits “no evidence” of Russian Collusion.

The headline says it all really – it’s not exaggeration or spin on our part. For months, years even, we’ve been told that Trump is “the Siberian candidate”, or “Putin’s puppet” and “Russia’s Weapon”. The evidence was never supplied, but those who questioned the claim were mocked, derided and ignored. None of that matters now…because today, in the New York Times, these words were published: …no public evidence has emerged showing that his campaign conspired with Russia in the election interference or accepted Russian money.” For proof, and just in case they take it down, here’s the screen cap they took over at Moon of Alabama: Right there in black-and-white. There are other words, of course, thousands of them, a quarter of a novel. All designed to blow smoke over this para and give the opposite impression without actually lying. But none of the others matter: these 20 words prove Russiagate is fake, and that the NYT knows it and just hopes its readers don’t catch on. That para is basically a full on admission …