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WSJ: "When Russia Invaded Georgia"
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From the Wall Street Journal:

When Russia Invaded Georgia

It happened in 2008 and foretold a decade of Putin’s adventurism.

By Mikheil Saakashvili
Aug. 7, 2018 6:56 p.m. ET

In contrast, here’s my 2016 summary of what actually happened ten years ago.

 
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  1. JohnnyD says:

    Here’s how the Washington Post sees it:

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  2. Tiny Duck says:

    We NEED to go to war with Russia

    They are a white supremacist country who stole are election

    You are a traitor if you don’t want war with Russia

    Put in is a thug and tyrant he has treated his Julio citz he kind targets she just be. Iruggy ti I drive Russia is full if of thuggish racist white idols there are bobPeile of Col R there that twins your noting right there

    If you dint want to see vsd Russ I a guy are a traitor and Sheri a dues biit esnt if need. You

    If I be best the rugh wing had gut I’d ScCandsce Owens then it us a joke

    [MORE]

  3. Anonymous[266] • Disclaimer says:

    Ron Unz has totally destroyed my faith in the accepted historical narrative. Having developed a new interest in learning history I picked up Will Durant’s majestic 11-volume Story of Civilization from the first half of the 20th century. I gave up on it in the first pages of volume 1, chapter 1:

    “There are no racial conditions to civilization. It may appear on any continent and in any color: at Pekin or Delhi, at Memphis or Babylon, at Ravenna or London, in Peru or Yucatan. It is not the great race that makes the civilization, it is the great civilization that makes the people; circumstances geographical and economic create a culture, and the culture creates a type. The Englishman does not make British civilization, it makes him; if he carries it with him wherever he goes, and dresses for dinner in Timbuktu, it is not that he is creating his civilization there anew, but that he acknowledges even there its mastery over his soul. Given like material conditions, and another race would beget like results; Japan reproduces in the twentieth century the history of England in the nineteenth. Civilization is related to race only in the sense that it is often preceded by the slow intermarriage of different stocks, and their gradual assimilation into a relatively homogeneous people.”

    Seriously??

  4. @Tiny Duck

    So did you enlist? Or were you DQ’d because you spelled your name wrong again? Maybe you could apply for a waiver.

  5. Precious says:

    Mikheil Saakashvili is confusing Georgia with the US state of Georgia, and that time in 2016(not 2008) when a Russian visited the counties of Cobb and Fulton. It is totally understandable a journalist could get confused like that, why on Earth do human beings re-use place names? Perhaps the US state of Georgia can rename itself to avoid this confusion in the future. Like Not-That-Georgia.

    • Replies: @Tyrion 2
  6. Anonymous[300] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anonymous

    Due to gene-culture co-evolution, I don’t see anything vastly wrong with it. Culture is a kind of ecological niche, and it selects for those of the correct genes to live in it; a vast reason why England became much more tame was because at one point, it was executing an entire percentage point of all their males every single year. Eventually the majority of “dumb criminal” genes were gone.

    • Replies: @gcochran
  7. Mikheil Saakashvili, a onetime president of Georgia, has sporadically popped in and out of the newspapers here, often as a footnote, for the last two decades.

    Fortunately, Wikipedia summarizes and reminds us of his history, which I vaguely remembered.

    He was barred by the constitution of Georgia from seeking a third term in the 2013 presidential election…shortly after the election, Saakashvili left Georgia.

    Saakashvili is wanted by Georgia’s new government on multiple criminal charges, which he decries as politically motivated.

    Saakashvili energetically supported the 2014 Ukrainian revolution….Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko appointed Saakashvili as Governor of Odessa Oblast …

    He was also granted Ukrainian citizenship and due to restrictions on dual nationality under Georgian law, was stripped of his Georgian citizenship.

    On 7 November 2016, Saakashvili resigned as Governor while blaming President Poroshenko personally for enabling corruption in Odessa and in Ukraine overall.

    On 26 July 2017, Saakashvili (at the time staying in the U.S.) was stripped of his Ukrainian citizenship by Petro Poroshenko, and became a stateless person.But he soon told the press he wanted to return to Ukraine to “get rid of the old corrupt elite” there.

    Since December 2017 Saakashvili is suspected (by the General Prosecutor of Ukraine) of receiving financing from a “criminal group” linked to the ousted (during the 2014 Ukrainian revolution) Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.

    On 12 February 2018 Saakashvili was deported to Poland and later relocated to the Netherlands.

    Saakashvili is what the British call a chancer, their word for a character who exploits any opportunity to further their own ends.

    Here’s video of his being seized prior to deportation.

    • Replies: @Pericles
  8. Jack D says:

    Just because you say “Georgia started it” doesn’t make it so.

    The Georgian tanks crossed into S. Ossetia (which BTW is inside the borders of Georgia) because they were being shelled by “Ossetian separatists” (read Russian backed forces).

    Russia has always backed S. Ossetia as a way of weakening Georgia and in the hope that (as we saw in Crimea) that it can serve as a foot in the door for eventually regaining the whole country.

    The alt.right love for Russia (and the left’s new hatred for it) are complete mysteries to me. Russia has always been an expansionist power from the time of the Czars thru Stalin and up to Putin, but when Russian expansionism was dressed up as “Communism” the left loved it and now that Russia is the “defender of white nationalism” or something, the right loves them but they were not lovable before and they’re still not lovable now.

  9. Anon[364] • Disclaimer says:

    Not surprised that the WSJ would blatantly lie about something war-related. Neocon warmongers are trying to pass more sanctions on the Russians + invite Georgia into NATO. This is propaganda meant to make both go over easier with the public. Don’t ever believe this is a free country. It is every bit the dictatorship China is, but the Deepstate is more savvy about how they administer it.

    • Replies: @Pericles
  10. Anon[364] • Disclaimer says:

    Mikheil Saakashvili.

    What a wacko:

    “Mikheil Saakashvili, the former president of Georgia, was arrested on Friday in Ukraine during a late-night police raid on an apartment where he had been hiding after his escape from custody following a rooftop struggle with security agents this week.”

    “Mr. Saakashvili has not yet been formally charged. Mr. Lutsenko, the prosecutor general, this week accused him of receiving $500,000 for his political activities from a fugitive Ukrainian businessman close to Mr. Yanukovych, who has lived in exile in Russia since his ouster.

    Mr. Saakashvili, who is also wanted in Georgia on fraud charges”

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/08/world/europe/saakashvili-arrest-ukraine.html

    AND

    “On Tuesday Mikheil Saakashvili, a onetime darling of the West, took his high-wire political career to bizarre new heights when he climbed onto the roof of his five-story apartment building in the center of Kiev, the Ukrainian capital, with law enforcement officers in hot pursuit. As a crowd of hundreds of supporters gathered below, he shouted insults at Ukraine’s leaders and, according to several local news outlets, threatened to jump if security agents tried to grab him.

    Dragged from the roof after denouncing Mr. Poroshenko as a traitor and a thief, the former Georgian leader was detained but then freed by his supporters, who, amid raucous scenes on the street, blocked a security service van before it could take Mr. Saakashvili to a Kiev detention center and allowed him to escape.”

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/05/world/europe/saakashvili-ukraine-demonstration.html

  11. newrouter says:
    @Jack D

    “The Georgian tanks crossed into S. Ossetia (which BTW is inside the borders of Georgia) because they were being shelled by “Ossetian separatists” (read Russian backed forces). ”

    an eye witness accunt i’m sure.

  12. istevefan says:

    The alt.right love for Russia (and the left’s new hatred for it) are complete mysteries to me. Russia has always been an expansionist power from the time of the Czars thru Stalin and up to Putin, but when Russian expansionism was dressed up as “Communism” the…

    Speaking as a traditionalist, not an alt-righter, we don’t have an ethnic animus towards Russians. When they were part of the evil empire USSR, we opposed them due to ideology. Now that they dropped that ideology and have begun to re-Christianize, we feel no need to regard them as our enemy.

    Historically we seem to have gotten along with them up until the time the Bolsheviks took over. They gave us a sweet deal on Alaska, prevented Europeans from intervening in our Civil War and they even provided a job for John Paul Jones.

    There seems to be some similarities between Americans and Russians. We both occupy vast land masses that we took from other peoples. We both have a historical characteristic of being hard and tough. Though we do have differences, there is much common ground we probably have. And now that communism has been swept away, we should be exploring it. But the geniuses that run our nation like it is the board game Risk, have other ideas. They are still stuck in the past and have not correctly identified the real threat, the global South.

  13. Anon[400] • Disclaimer says:

    “The alt.right love for Russia (and the left’s new hatred for it) are complete mysteries to me.”

    The continued Boomer obsession with Russia is a complete mystery to me as well (too many Ian Flemming books?). As I have pointed out before, Russia is just a country – like any other country that has interests and objectives (except our own because we don’t seem to have to coherent policy in anything). Their actions are neither mysterious nor unpredictable.

    “Russia has always backed S. Ossetia as a way of weakening Georgia.”

    Kinda like how the US is trying to weaken the Russians by inviting Georgia into NATO. Chicken or egg?

    “Just because you say “Georgia started it” doesn’t make it so.”

    Just because you attribute the actions of some rebels to the Russians doesn’t make it so. The best case scenario for the Georgians is that they were tricked into invading over some shelling incident they could have simply chosen to ignore, instead.

    “The Georgian tanks crossed into S. Ossetia (which BTW is inside the borders of Georgia) because they were being shelled by “Ossetian separatists” (read Russian backed forces).”

    So they say. Coming from a liar like Mikheil Saakashvili, I’m not sure what can believed. All I know for sure is that the Georgian president and the Russian president conversed over the phone before Georgia invaded; the Georgian leader assured the Russians that they would not attack, and then they turned around and did exactly that. It defies belief that “shelling” alone was responsible. More likely, they believed the Americans would back them if they attacked and they simply used “shelling” as an excuse. They didn’t think the Russians would call their bluff. What isn’t well known is George Bush’s (and Israel’s) defense overtures to the Georgians at the time.

    “S. Ossetia (which BTW is inside the borders of Georgia)”

    Wasn’t Iraq inside the borders of…Iraq? Where was the neocon sovereignty argument then? BTW, the issue was over Russian ethnics in S. Ossetia, not lines on a map.

  14. anon[238] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    Russia’s anti NATO strategy is to promote territorial disputes which effectively preclude membership. Besides Georgia, Russia has taken that approach in Moldova and Ukraine.

    The mindless expansion of NATO is inexcusable. As far as Russia’s resistance – I’m fine with it. Anything to create a buffer.

    I’m with George Kennan on this.

    • Replies: @Lot
    , @Jack D
  15. Anon[202] • Disclaimer says:

    “When Russia Invaded Georgia”

    1801?

  16. Anonymous[427] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    The alt.right love for Russia (and the left’s new hatred for it) are complete mysteries to me. Russia has always been an expansionist power from the time of the Czars thru Stalin and up to Putin, but when Russian expansionism was dressed up as “Communism” the left loved it and now that Russia is the “defender of white nationalism” or something, the right loves them but they were not lovable before and they’re still not lovable now.

    Russia is neither all that white nor all that lovable, but I’ll take them over their enemies.

    Putin is the best leader they have had, certainly, in a hundred years and he has a great deal of virtus in the Roman sense. I have far more respect for him than for Clinton, Bush I or II or Obama, or anyone in their administrations.

    Personally I’d like to have a Russian airplane. Not a MiG, I couldn’t afford the fuel, but a round engine trainer with a 300 hp air start radial.

    • Replies: @MarkinPNW
  17. Alfa158 says:
    @Tiny Duck

    Aargh! You were doing great with the first three paragraphs, short, pithy, and just one mis-spelling to make the character you are portraying look stupid, and then you ruined it by piling on three more paragraphs of gibberish.
    You keep showing promise as a satirist, but then no matter how much I try to work with you, you backslide. Look, since real shit-libs avoid this site like the plague, we need more posters like you to take up the slack and provide the buffoonish counter points. Stop overplaying it!

  18. Anon[202] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    The Georgian tanks crossed into S. Ossetia (which BTW is inside the borders of Georgia) because they were being shelled by “Ossetian separatists” (read Russian backed forces).

    Russia has always backed S. Ossetia as a way of weakening Georgia and in the hope that (as we saw in Crimea) that it can serve as a foot in the door for eventually regaining the whole country.

    Georgia has been part of Russia since 1801. If Russia recognizes Georgian separatists why exactly should they not recognize SO separatists?

    Anyway

    The US has always backed Georgia as a way of weakening Russia

    FTFY

  19. Anonymous[411] • Disclaimer says:

    Meanwhile…

    My experience the last few nights: The reverse proxy is stomping the idiot hackers attempting distributed denial attacks. It’s no contest.

    The losers trying to take down Unz.com think it’s still 2008 and their old techniques will work if they just keep pounding.

    Or more likely they are collecting checks from a client while knowing full well that Cloudflare will parry the attacks but they can say they tried.

    Love this new era. The DDS script kiddies were terrorizing the internet for years but now the jig is up. ESAD.

  20. Anonymous[411] • Disclaimer says:

    I’M ONTO YOU, PITTS.

    YOU DRUNKEN SLOB.

    YOU WASHED-UP HAS-BEEN.

    YOU, AND YOUR PAPER, AND YOUR CITY, ARE ALL CIRCLING THE DRAIN.

    GO AWAY, LOSER.

  21. Anon[184] • Disclaimer says:

    Jack D was a commenter on the linked article – from two years ago – attacking the Russians; now, as soon as Russia is brought up again, he is back at it…with the same argument no less (S. Ossetia being inside a geographic map of Georgia, as if that settles the entire thing, all complexities aside). Like I said, I don’t understand this Boomer obsession with the Russians.

    • Agree: utu
    • Replies: @utu
    , @Reg Cæsar
    , @Hunsdon
  22. Dan Hayes says:

    Whenever Saakashvili gets into trouble he can usually be found bicycling in his Brooklyn redoubt. But he is a man of the people, as he has never been reported bicycling in Manhattan’s Upper West Side!

  23. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @istevefan

    America’s (and Western Europe’s, to a lesser extent) retro obsession with Russia is what you’d want, if you were China. In light of the Feinstein revelations, to what extent is it due to Chinese influence?

  24. marine says:

    When the invasion of Georgia took place I was a Marine deployed to Kuwait. I watched about a battalion worth of Georgians stream though Kuwait over the course of three days. At the time I was very angry. It seems to me that it is unlikely the Georgians would have picked a fight with Russia at all, let alone with their best fighters in Iraq, far from their homeland. Then again maybe the troops I watched try to shuffle on home were not Georgia’s best and perhaps the Georgians thought that the U.S. would help them fight a war with Russia just because they were a part of the coalition of the willing. The Russians seemed to be quite prepared for the war (it should be remembered that the U.S. plans to invade Canada), but from what I have read their tactics lacked one key component: little green men. In the Russian invasions of Czechoslovakia (1968), Afghanistan (1979) and Crimea/Ukraine (2014) the first actions were all instigated by either elite Russians troops disguised as locals/civilians or locals trained by Russian special forces. In my mind the Russian invasion of Georgia was planned for but got prematurely triggered by south Ossetia separatist. In the end the Russians are happy getting whatever defensive space they can get and Georgia’s oil pipeline being in easy striking distance is just the cherry on the top of the pie.

  25. Anon[312] • Disclaimer says:

    “The losers trying to take down Unz.com think it’s still 2008 and their old techniques will work if they just keep pounding.”

    I had a suspicion that something was up. Glad to see that it’s nothing significant. I had assumed, however, that it was actually the NSA attempting to trick users into revealing their identities – by getting them to enable JavaScript – so they could track down that guy who spilled the beans on their 2016 London MI6-CIA meetup conspiracy on this blog a couple of weeks ago.

    Also glad to see that FBI/ADL informant Art Deco has returned from the wilderness after getting called out. They must have had to put the guy back through rigorous retraining: “no more quoting from the manual!”

  26. Anon[312] • Disclaimer says:

    “But he is a man of the people, as he has never been reported bicycling in Manhattan’s Upper West Side!”

    Who’s paying for all that bicycling, though?

    • Replies: @Dan Hayes
  27. @Jack D

    Georgia and Russia signed a formal agreement around 1993 giving South Ossetia autonomy, with a recognized border watched by international border watchers. Georgia announced earlier in 2008 that they were not going to recognized the 15-year-old agreement anymore, but the border watchers stayed in place.

    So the legal status of South Ossetia was more complex than saying it is inside Georgia.

    • Replies: @AP
    , @Romanian
    , @Candide III
  28. J.Ross says: • Website

    SAAKASHVILI? So in other words, the most biased guy they could possibly find apart from Medvedev? Did he mention his Israeli and American friends, who told him to poke the bear, and then split when he needed their help?
    Russia invading Georgia again — McClatchy reports that a district with less than three hundred voters has counted over six hundred ballots. Had they not closed the polls so early, they might have reached an even thousand. Remember, no matter how many people go to prison for it, voter fraud does not happen, and all discussion of photo IDs for votes (such as Mexico uses) is racist!

    https://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/politics-government/article216056560.html

    http://archive.is/iiXkX

    The discrepancy, included in a number of sworn statements and exhibits filed as part of a federal lawsuit against the state by election security activists, comes amid swelling public concern for the security of Georgia’s voting systems. Georgia is one of four states that uses voting machines statewide that produce no paper record for voters to verify, making them difficult to audit, experts say.
    And cybersecurity experts have warned that there were security flaws on the state election website leading up to the 2016 contest that permitted the download and manipulation of voter information.

    Don’t let Vladimir Putin hack any more elections! Demand positive photo voter ID!

  29. J.Ross says: • Website
    @Jack D

    Mark Ames is a Jew whose newspaper was squashed by Putin as a punishment for criticizing Putin. He has as much reason as anyone to hate Russia. He says Georgia started it.

  30. Anon[189] • Disclaimer says:

    “America’s (and Western Europe’s, to a lesser extent) retro obsession with Russia is what you’d want, if you were China.”

    Not China. Rather, it’s an attempt by the US Deepstate to keep the EU (Germany) from hooking up with Russia in an alliance against them. All the anti-Russia hate also helps to give the country, racked with internal problems, an external aggressor to focus attention on, so that’s a side benefit. As US Balkanization continues via immigration, expect these efforts to greatly intensify. Dangerous times ahead.

  31. utu says:
    @Anon

    this Boomer obsession

    Wrong question. It is a part of JQ.

  32. AndrewR says:
    @Anonymous

    He’s overstating the case, but certainly genes are less important than some people on this site prefer to admit.

    • Agree: kissinger
  33. Anon[409] • Disclaimer says:

    “Don’t let Vladimir Putin hack any more elections! Demand positive photo voter ID!”

    We should do something about dual-citizenship while we are at it. The thought of trillions of disloyal Russian-Americans voting in our elections on orders of the Kremlin is a bit much to swallow.

  34. pyrrhus says:
    @Anonymous

    And that’s why subSaharan Africa has produced civilizations that rivaled Greece and Rome….

  35. AP says:
    @Steve Sailer

    An added historical context: South Ossetians were not native to South Ossetia but settled there later, mostly in the 17th-19th centuries when they and moved south swamped the native Georgians. So they are like Albanians in Kosovo, or Mexicans in parts of the USA bordering Mexico.

    Georgians were still about 30% of the population in South Ossetia but were driven out after the war.

    Much worse was the situation in Abkhazia, where Georgians were about 50% of the population. Mass killings and rapes of Christian Georgians (including nuns) by Russia’s Chechen allies anticipated the ISIS horrors in Syria:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethnic_cleansing_of_Georgians_in_Abkhazia#Fall_of_Gagra

    Interestingly Basayev, who would later become an anti-Russian Chechen commander, here fought on the side of the the Russians against the Georgians.

    • Replies: @g2k
    , @Felix Keverich
    , @Anon
  36. Dan Hayes says:
    @Anon

    Anon[312]:

    I don’t know who paid for his bicycling but I do know who paid for his postgraduate education. The US State Department provided fellowships for an LL.M from Columbia Law School and for classes at The George Washington University Law School.

  37. @Jack D

    Russia has always been like this. You can draw a straight line from Dmitry Donskoy, through Ivan IV Grozny, and Joseph Stalin, to Vladimir Putin. Russia has always been hostile and imperialistic. They have always been paranoid because they have always acted under the rule first articulated by Thucydides (5:105) rule or be ruled, and therefore they assume everyone else does too.

    The lesson is that if you are neighbor of Russia, you must be militarily stronger than they are or they will take advantage of you.

    The US is directly confronted by Russia (use a globe). The US needs fiscal continence, a strong program of rearmament, and to find allies who will act like they care.

  38. Pericles says:
    @PiltdownMan

    I seem to recall reading Saakashvili was stored in Brooklyn between outings, so he appears to be a sort of Gulen-style asset.

    • Agree: Dan Hayes
    • Replies: @Hunsdon
  39. @Anon

    Like I said, I don’t understand this Boomer obsession with the Russians.

    And I don’t understand this anonymous obsession with “Boomers”.

  40. Pericles says:
    @Anon

    invite Georgia into NATO

    The Swedish elites seem to have decided to join NATO on the QT too. While Sweden has had extensive secret cooperation with the same during the Cold War, it seems like an idiotic decision to drop neutrality at this point in time, with NATO in senescent decline except for recent drummed-up Jewish aggression. It seems clear we won’t get to vote on it though.

    Perhaps we will be able to celebrate this by sending some blond conscripts to die in Ukraine, or even Georgia.

  41. anon[227] • Disclaimer says:
    @Tiny Duck

    At what point does bad spelling qualify as mental illness?

  42. @istevefan

    There seems to be some similarities between Americans and Russians.

    We both have a tendency to turn short Os into an ah sound, We do it on accented syllables, they on unaccented ones. T’-rahn-to vs. tah-rohn-tah.

    (Actually, we drop the second T in Toronto. I think some Torontonians do as well, but not the rest of Canada.)

  43. vinteuil says:
    @Jack D

    Jack D, in your amazingly industrious 8,000+ commenting history at Unz.com, have you ever noticed Anatoly Karlin’s Russian Reaction blog?

    Checking back through a few pages of your commenting history, here, it seems that you only keep up with ISteve.

    But if you want to know what the alt.right/dissident right really thinks of Russia & Putin, Karlin’s is the go-to place.

    First clue: it is very, very far from unambiguous “love.”

    • Replies: @Candide III
  44. rob says:
    @Tiny Duck

    Yeah, I like huffing gasoline, too.

  45. WHAT says:
    @Jack D

    Still pushing this sad bullshit, I see.

    There are more than enough videos of Tshinval being fucking obliterated by georgian BM-21s, but somehow no videos of georgian cities being bombarded. Considering the track record of US MSM since 080808 alone, you have to be an idiot to believe anything they say.

  46. gcochran says:
    @Anonymous

    ” it was executing an entire percentage point of all their males every single year.”

    Never happened.

    • Replies: @Lot
  47. Lot says:
    @gcochran

    http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/147470491501300114

    “At the beginning of [1500]… the English homicide rate was about 20 to 40 per year per 100,000 people. At the end [1750, AT], it was about 2 to 4 per 100,000, i.e., a 10-fold reduction

    …Can this leftward shift be explained by the high execution rate between 1500 and 1750? During that period, 0.5 to 1% of all men were removed from each generation through court-ordered executions and a comparable proportion through extrajudicial executions, i.e., deaths of offenders at the scene of the crime or in prison while awaiting trial. The total execution rate was thus somewhere between 1 and 2%. These men were permanently removed from the population, as was the heritable component of their propensity for homicide. If we assume a standard normal distribution in the male population, the most violent 1 to 2% should form a right-hand “tail” that begins 2.33–2.05 SD to the right of the mean propensity for homicide. If we eliminate this right-hand tail and leave only the other 98-99% to survive and reproduce, we have a selection differential of 0.027 to 0.049 SD per generation.”

    • Replies: @gcochran
  48. Tyrion 2 says:
    @Precious

    Watching the names of the small towns on the East Coast pop up on the airplane satelite viewer screen provided me with much amusement.

    A favourite: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lebanon,_Pennsylvania

  49. @Johann Ricke

    Late in the Romanov Era, the Imperial Foreign Ministry sent the Czar a congratulatory message on some public holiday saying they had gone through the archives and determined that of the 40 wars Russia had been in, they were proud to say that Russia had started 38 of them.

    I don’t have a link for this, so take it for what it’s worth. But there is a reason Russia is so big.

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  50. Lot says:
    @anon

    Or maybe Nato expansion saved the Baltic republics from their own “border disputes” with Russia.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    , @WHAT
    , @Anonymous
  51. gcochran says:
    @Lot

    There’s a hell of a difference between 1% a year and 1% a generation.

    • Replies: @Stan d Mute
  52. LondonBob says:

    Funnily enough I had already dug up your old article, there was a puff piece on this topic on another British political site. The commentators weren’t having it, must be Russian hasbaras.

    • Replies: @Candide III
  53. Romanian says: • Website
    @Jack D

    The Soviet policy of drawing the borders of territorial administrative units to include conflicting elements is still paying dividends. Back then, it was divide and conquer, with the locals needing the strong hand of the central authorities to maintain a local equilibrium. Now that the former administrative units are states, we see how the national projects were weakened by poisoned pills inside their borders. Moldova and Transnistria, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Nagorno-Karabakh, Georgia with South Ossetia and Abkhazia, the weird ass borders of Central Asia and their inevitable water conflicts etc.

    Brilliant, really. And confirms the iSteve worldview.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  54. LondonBob says:
    @Lot

    Doubt it, bits of Russia hadn’t been carved out and put in the Baltics as part of the Bolsheviks divide and conquer strategy. I suppose northern Kazakhstan is the last area left in that regards, Russia doesn’t have a Greater Israel doctrine where they believe whole other countries are actually their territory. You are projecting Israeli behaviour on to Russians, again.

  55. Romanian says: • Website
    @Steve Sailer

    Russia also guaranteed Ukraine’s borders in exchange for giving up its nukes, the third largest arsenal in the world.

    • Replies: @g2k
    , @Lot
  56. @Steve Sailer

    > Georgia and Russia signed a formal agreement around 1993 giving South Ossetia autonomy
    Yes, and Abkhazia, and that was after Georgia lost the first Russian-Georgian war. However that may be, I’m fairly certain that the legal status of South Ossetia did not allow Russia to hand out Russian passports there or to funnel in weapons and “volunteers”, which is what had induced Georgia to abrogate the practically voided agreement and to try to reassert control. Americans have been militarily stronger by far than any other country in the Americas for at least two centuries, so you haven’t had to deal with such issues, but it’s fairly similar to the Israel-Palestine situation with the Cathedral playing the part of Russia to Palestinians playing the part of South Ossetia, Abkhazia, DNR/LNR etc. I don’t mean that the Western presses and governments supply arms to Palestinians, they can delegate the icky parts to the Arabs, but they do supply money, diplomatic firepower and international public opinion.

  57. @LondonBob

    Why should they be having it? Britain did quite well out of Russian money parked in prime London real estate, not to mention Chelsea FC. As a matter of fact, Russia has been repeatedly strength-testing the Baltic states, see e.g. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bronze_Night.

  58. @LondonBob

    They may not be saying that officially, they aren’t dumb enough for that, but it’s certain they are thinking it. Didn’t Putin himself state that the dissolution of USSR was the greatest geopolitical tragedy of the XX century?

    • Replies: @Cagey Beast
    , @LondonBob
  59. @LondonBob

    Speaking of which, Russia should have kept/annexed northern Kazakhstan when the USSR disbanded.

  60. WHAT says:
    @Lot

    Nobody needs baltic pseudostates, of that they are perfectly aware. A weak argument about land access to Kaliningrad ignores its actual strategic meaning, which is not a fortress of some kind to hold on to, but Putin`s nuclear dagger put right to the continental capital cities if they get wrong ideas, i.e. to be used very quickly. For the peaceful times shipping is enough.
    With the ongoing population exodus and purely idiotic economic antagonism to the russian market(shprotogate lol) the only baltic lifeline is begging for scraps from the german table and opportunistically from american neocohens.

    Poland and most of butthurt belt with it will be the same the moment german creditors come knocking, hence all the clamoring for neocohen bases.

  61. @vinteuil

    Karlin doesn’t like Putin much because of his internal policies, which it might be well for American rightists to learn, but a cursory perusal of e.g. comment threads on Unz.com reveals that his views on Putin are in a very decided minority on that flank. However, he’s quite pro-Russian in all other respects, writing that

    As a Russian nationalist, I remain unwaveringly committed to the idea of the triune Russian nation, just like Ivan Ilyin and Alexander Solzhenitsyn. There will come a day when the dismemberment of the Russian nation will be but a bad memory in the Russian historical consciousness. This will almost certainly not happen under the current occupants of the Kremlin. But happen it will, or Russia will cease to exist as a civilizational entity.

    though he’s intelligent and honest enough to realize that Russia’s Ukrainian policy has mostly failed and/or backfired.

  62. Anon[222] • Disclaimer says:

    “Or maybe Nato expansion saved the Baltic republics from their own “border disputes” with Russia.”

    By putting my country in the firing line and increasing the probability of a catastrophic war with a powerful country. Sounds like England saving Poland from their “border dispute” with Germany.

    • Agree: Cagey Beast
    • Replies: @Jack D
  63. Anon[222] • Disclaimer says:

    “Russia also guaranteed Ukraine’s borders in exchange for giving up its nukes, the third largest arsenal in the world.”

    Not oppressing ethic Russians or possibly evicting them from their naval base was probably a tacit part of that agreement. In any case, it has no relevance to Georgia. And didn’t we guarantee the Russians we wouldn’t move NATO to their border? I think the US should be the last to call out others on broken deals.

    • Replies: @Sam Haysom
    , @Candide III
  64. Anon[222] • Disclaimer says:

    “And I don’t understand this anonymous obsession with “Boomers”.”

    You can’t double stamp a triple stamp.

  65. Anon[332] • Disclaimer says:

    “The lesson is that if you are neighbor of Russia, you must be militarily stronger than they are or they will take advantage of you.”

    Advice the Iranians could use about now.

    “The US is directly confronted by Russia (use a globe). The US needs fiscal continence, a strong program of rearmament, and to find allies who will act like they care.”

    The US is not directly confronted by Russia globally. Russia has a very limited presence outside their immediate borders, certainly nothing compared with US reach; in some areas, there is no need for confrontation at all, unless you really think overthrowing the government of Syria is a good thing. Russia is also outspent by a wide margin by the US and several US allies are in the same ballpark militarily as the Russians – the UK, Saudi Arabia, etc. So, this “rearmament” talk is nonsense. We never disarmed to begin with.

  66. Anon[332] • Disclaimer says:

    “but it’s certain they are thinking it. Didn’t Putin himself state that the dissolution of USSR was the greatest geopolitical tragedy of the XX century?”

    For Russia’s geostrategic position, yeah. Doesn’t mean they want to (or even could if they did) rebuild the Soviet Union. More likely, anti-Russian propaganda is just a Deep State strategy to keep “allies” (vassal states) in line – could also be projection on the Empire’s part, with all of its “exceptional” talk they think others want to do what they are trying to do themselves: build a global empire by hook or by crook.

  67. Anon[332] • Disclaimer says:

    “Russia has been repeatedly strength-testing the Baltic states”

    Isn’t that what the US does with its NATO and Korean war games? You act like the routine is exceptional when it is not.

    • Replies: @Candide III
  68. g2k says:
    @AP

    Point taken, but south ossetia was not abkhazia. The Georgians were driven out of abkhazia in the 90s after, having lost south ossetia, that nutcase Gamsakhurida sent thugs and militia there to secure it rather than the useless army. For some reason the chechens sided with the (predominantly Christian btw)Abkhaz. It’s certainly true that the Georgians there were treated with absolute barbarity once they lost the war, but the behavior of their paramilitaries before was certainty bad enough to provoke the, otherwise, neutral, Armenian villages to side with the seperatists. While all this was going on, ossetians were violently expelling chechens from their republic in the north and didn’t touch their Georgian neighbors until 2008. South ossetia had a fairly bloodless separation without the intense hatreds that accompany conflicts in that part of the world(there’s quite a few Georgians living in vladikavkaz and ossetian cross-border truckers have no problems in Georgia), the border was becoming porous and it could’ve been negotiated back in about a decade, but saakashvili blew it.

  69. g2k says:
    @Romanian

    There were also guarantees about Ukrainian neutrality in that agreement which could be viewed as null and void after it became unshakably atlanticist.

    • Replies: @Romanian
  70. El Dato says:
    @Tiny Duck

    Tiny Duck:

    From Pedestrian Nigg Shaggurath to Warlike Shub Niggurath whenever Putin is mentioned.

    Keep it clean, Tiny.

  71. HenryA says:

    Ten years ago when this war started and after reading about the events in the NYT, I was curious about Georgia’s geography so I went to Google maps (or GOOGLE Earth, which one I don’t exactly recall) only to see a blank map of Georgia. I returned several times during the fighting and saw the same thing. When the war was over I checked again and all of Georgia’s features were restored. Does anyone else remember this?

  72. El Dato says:

    Based American reaction from back then:

    The Economist didn’t miss a beat:

    I was happy to have canceled my subscription back when the War On Terror started.

  73. @AP

    Kind of like Osama bin Laden was a Western ally when they fought against Russians in Afghanistan.

    Except that Russian press did not celebrate Basaev as a hero. Western press celebrated Osama bin Laden.

  74. @Johann Ricke

    Using a globe, I’d say we’re “directly confronted” by Canada to the North and Mexico to the South. Otherwise, it’s oceans. Using a globe, Europe is directly confronted by Russia but they don’t seem too worried about it. If they were, they’d pay for competent militaries and realize that their growing North African and Turkish populations won’t fight if Russia decides to march through the Fulda Gap.

    The largest existential threat we face is Global South immigration. Good luck being a Great Power to rival Russia and China with a population of Dontaviouses and Alejandros.

    I agree that Russia is a global, economic rival (well behind China) but I’m not sure what the whole “Great Game” is about now that we’re no longer cleft between socialism and capitalism. Oil, I guess. The three countries that matter don’t seem to have any interest in war with each other, notwithstanding the neo-conservative grudge over Great-Uncle Moishe being evicted from the shtetl.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  75. Dante says:

    Unfortunately for the WSJ most of us with a brain know that Georgia attacked South Ossetia and killed Russian peace keepers not the other way round, No wonder really that msm is dying. Good riddance

  76. @Johann Ricke

    It also occurs to me if Europe were really concerned about Russia they’d push for strong, nationalist regimes in Central and Eastern Europe to shore up that front. Instead, they seem more concerned about Slavic and Balkan countries not accepting enough Muslim men to wander around their streets and run (or loot) when the shooting starts.

    The actions of Russia’s more immediate neighbors lead me to think this supposed “direct” threat to Americans sleeping safely in their beds is a tad overblown. Kind of like how nobody saw the implosion of the stagnant, corrupt, alcoholic USSR even though all the signs were there. I remember thinking about it after seeing news footage of Soviet soldiers in Afghanistan wearing off-brand running shoes with their combat gear. They were running out of boots. Boots! I saw it and thought about it, but apparently nobody in CIA with graduate degrees in Russian studies studying Russia for a living ever saw it and thought about it.

  77. RT Rider says:

    I was in Tbilisi shortly after the Russian counter attack into Georgia. There were, at that time, still many Georgians with loyalty to the Russians, especially after the economic devastation that hit Georgia after the fall of the USSR, and the apparatchiks started to divide up what was left of the country’s economy for themselves. The people I dealt with, mostly businessmen looking for partnerships, had no time for Saakashvili, and considered him an American puppet, crook, and blowhard.

    He practically invited the Russian invasion into Georgia with his bluster, and they called his bluff. It was ludicrously easy for the Russians, as they rolled down to the northern perimeter of Tbilisi, destroyed the army barracks there, and then left. I saw what remained of it.

    The US embassy in Tbilisi, which I also visited, was far grander than necessary for a shit hole like Georgia – more like a military fortress than an embassy. But, of course, this was and is, all part of the plan to encircle Russia.

  78. Anonymous[188] • Disclaimer says:
    @Lot

    Or maybe the absorption of the Baltic states into NATOstan was just a prelude to a border dispute involving the Kaliningrad enclave … time will tell.

    • Replies: @Lot
  79. Mr. Anon says:
    @Johann Ricke

    Whereas american hegemony has been an unalloyed force of good in the World. Just ask anyone in Latin America, or Vietnam, or Iraq, or Syria, or Somalia. Our popular culture pressure-washes the entire planet in a slurry of comic-book movies, violent zombie movies, auto-tuned and hyper-sexualized pop-music, reality TV aesthetics, and the promotion of de-feminization, homosexuality, transgenderism, and tattooing. And you don’t even have to be our neighbor to get a great big dose of our cultural enrichment. USA. USA.

  80. @Steve Sailer

    The real reason Russia is so big is because they were the first civilised people to claim vast, empty territories in Northern Eurasia (kind of the same reason Canada is so big). Your historical anecdote is almost certainly a (Western) fake: Russians themselves take great pride in being kind, peace-loving people.

  81. Mr. Anon says:
    @Jack D

    The alt.right love for Russia (and the left’s new hatred for it) are complete mysteries to me.

    A lot of people on the right don’t love Russia. They simply don’t hate it. Why that is misconstrued into “love” is no mystery to me.

    • Replies: @Sam Haysom
  82. Hunsdon says:
    @Pericles

    I wonder if they get together for coffee and a few good laughs at America’s expense.

  83. Hunsdon says:
    @Anon

    It could simply be ideosclerosis, a hardening of the ideas. The Soviet Union was Enemy No. 1 for so long, maybe some people just have it grooved into their brain housing groups and can’t realize that things have changed.

    • Replies: @Desiderius
  84. Jack D says:
    @anon

    Being against NATO expansion makes a lot of sense if you are a Russian patriot but not if you are an American patriot. Seems like a lot of people here are cheering for the other side.

  85. Jack D says:
    @Romanian

    I’m not sure how much of an intentional strategy it was but the Russians have definitely made shrewd use of these cuckoo’s eggs to further their agenda of maintaining a foothold in their former occupied territories and positioning themselves to someday reassert full control over the entire area.

    While on the OTOH, you have to admire Russian tactical skill in an evil genius sort of way (although frankly some of their tactics, such as “little green men”, don’t really fool anyone except for fools), some people around here seem to be positively cheering Russia on and seem to forget that the Putin sees Russia as opposed to Western interests and that we, as Westerners, are the people that the Russians oppose.

  86. Hunsdon says:

    In August of 2008, while Putin was in China for the Olympic Games, the Georgians attacked South Ossetia. In 2014, while Putin was working the Sochi Olympic Games, gee whiz, the Euromaidan boiled over. A suspicious fellow might assume that, since the West regards Putin as exerting absolute personal control over every nefarious scheme Russia launches, his attendance at Olympic ceremonies is regarded as a “cat’s away, the mice can play” type situation.

    • Replies: @Cagey Beast
  87. Hunsdon says:
    @Jack D

    George Kennan was a Krem-bot!

  88. Jack D says:
    @LondonBob

    Russia doesn’t have a Greater Israel doctrine where they believe whole other countries are actually their territory

    This is absolutely delusional – Russia, stretching across TEN time zones, has been an expansionist empire for 300+ years and has swallowed countless countries (and would love to get back those that it lost at the end of the Cold War, if it could do it without starting WWIII). Israel is a tiny little dot on the map.

    • Agree: Johann Ricke
    • Replies: @El Dato
  89. Anon[202] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    Being against the Boer war makes a lot of sense if you are a German/Dutch patriot but not if you are an English patriot. Seems like a lot of people here are cheering for the other side.

    FTFY

    • Replies: @LondonBob
  90. Anon[202] • Disclaimer says:
    @AP

    So they are like Albanians in Kosovo, or Mexicans in parts of the USA bordering Mexico.

    Wouldn’t Americans be Russians in this scenario?

  91. Sean says:

    It should have made everyone realise just how dangerous a president John McCain would have been.

  92. @Jack D

    I can’t tell if you’re trolling or really believe that boomer nonsense, but how does agreeing to defend more sh*tholes that have nothing to do with us make one a patriot?

    • Replies: @Jack D
  93. ic1000 says:
    @Tiny Duck

    Tiny Duck, what Google Fu skilz did you use to overcome Unz’ “Ignore Commenter” feature?! Are you a Russian hacker who now has time to spare, having already sewn up the 2018 midterms?

    Or is it just me…

  94. @Jack D

    But is NATO expansion in the best interest of Americans or the rest of us? It was one thing for a relative handful of North American and Western European countries* to agree that “an attack on one is an attack on all” but did it make sense to expand that promise eastward after the Wall fell? Did it make sense to agree to make this commitment to countries with brand new borders and constitutions, with untested civil societies and, often, ethnic Russian minorities? No, it was hubris.

    In any case, is NATO on our side? NATO is for flooding western Europe with 3rd World migrants via a destroyed Libya and for doing the same with Syria.

    * (Turkey was allowed in because of its strategic importance but it had very well-defined borders, thanks to its earlier policy of carrying out genocides on Greeks and Armenians).

  95. El Dato says:
    @Jack D

    Russia sure went for good old exploitative colonialism during the colonialism era (though not as exploitative as plucky Belgium) but…

    would love to get back those that it lost at the end of the Cold War, if it could do it without starting WWIII

    If so, a merger with Belarus would likely be pretty smooth as a start.

    has swallowed countless countries

    Please count them.

    Israel is a tiny little dot on the map.

    Like a little fat angry nuclear baby surrounded by wreckage.

    • Replies: @Sam Haysom
    , @Jack D
  96. Regret says:

    Dont choke on that tie, Mikheil.

  97. @Candide III

    Yes but finish his full thought:

    He said the break-up of the USSR in 1991 was “a real drama” which left tens of millions of Russians outside the Russian Federation.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/4480745.stm

    Or here’s the original transcript:

    Sometimes you can hear that since the Russian people have been silent for centuries, they are not used to or do not need freedom. And for that reason, it is claimed our citizens need constant supervision.

    I would like to bring those who think this way back to reality, to the facts. To do so, I will recall once more Russia’s most recent history.

    Above all, we should acknowledge that the collapse of the Soviet Union was a major geopolitical disaster of the century. As for the Russian nation, it became a genuine drama. Tens of millions of our co-citizens and compatriots found themselves outside Russian territory. Moreover, the epidemic of disintegration infected Russia itself.

    Individual savings were depreciated, and old ideals destroyed. Many institutions were disbanded or reformed carelessly. Terrorist intervention and the Khasavyurt capitulation that followed damaged the country’s integrity. Oligarchic groups – possessing absolute control over information channels – served exclusively their own corporate interests. Mass poverty began to be seen as the norm. And all this was happening against the backdrop of a dramatic economic downturn, unstable finances, and the paralysis of the social sphere.

    Many thought or seemed to think at the time that our young democracy was not a continuation of Russian statehood, but its ultimate collapse, the prolonged agony of the Soviet system.

    But they were mistaken.

    That was precisely the period when the significant developments took place in Russia. Our society was generating not only the energy of self-preservation, but also the will for a new and free life. In those difficult years, the people of Russia had to both uphold their state sovereignty and make an unerring choice in selecting a new vector of development in the thousand years of their history. They had to accomplish the most difficult task: how to safeguard their own values, not to squander undeniable achievements, and confirm the viability of Russian democracy. We had to find our own path in order to build a democratic, free and just society and state.

    http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/transcripts/22931

    • Replies: @Candide III
  98. Kyiv-Rus says:

    This is a real disappointment from Steve Sailor.

    “Separatists” i.e. Russians, were conducting war against Georgia — before the Georgian state took action.

    The Russian narrative is complete garbage. Especially taken in the context of historic Russian behavior. They’ve ALWAYS done this sort of thing to just about ALL of their neighbors.

    There’s probably no other country on Earth (except maybe Israel) so reviled by it’s neighbors.

    • Replies: @Lot
  99. ic1000 says:
    @Jack D

    > Being against NATO expansion makes a lot of sense if you are a Russian patriot but not if you are an American patriot.

    “Your part of the world is full of unresolved ethnic, linguistic, and religious disputes, with various flavors of irredentists to match. I vow to risk world war on your behalf, if one of these simmering conflicts comes to threaten your territorial integrity.”

    Have any Great Powers ever put themselves in that position, say, at the beginning of the 20th Century? How’d that work out?

    • Agree: Cagey Beast, sayless
  100. @Jack D

    The situation is impossible as long as US interests are defined as containing Russia based on the fact that Russia is opposed to US interests.

    The conflict with the Soviets during the Cold War was clear to me. The conflict with Russia is not so clear to me because I don’t know what Putin’s goal is. The USSR was opposed to Christian civilization and had lovely soul-crushing institutions like the gulag. In Russia, some of Putin’s enemies have been killed, but… meh… that’s not an existential threat to the US.

    What do you envision in a world without NATO and opposition to Putin?

  101. @Jack D

    Your main beef with Russia is her lust to expand, yet you say expansion for us is the only patriotic option.

    That’s an ignore.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  102. @Hunsdon

    The voting bloc where that’s most likely to be found is the one where TPTB are getting reamed, so it’s no surprise that the megaphone is pointing that way.

    • Agree: Hunsdon
  103. sayless says:
    @donut

    The Canadian actor who voiced HAL was (reportedly) annoyed that his Shakespearian work was much less well-known. Too bad, as he put in a great performance. The characterization is superb.

    • Replies: @duncsbaby
    , @Anonymous
  104. @istevefan

    Herewith a quote from the ever-prescient de Tocqueville:

    ” Their starting-point is different, and their courses are not the same; yet each of them seems marked out by the will of Heaven to sway the destinies of half the globe.”

  105. @Tyrion 2

    It’s “favorite.” Keep your unnecessary u out of central Pennsylvania.

    • Replies: @Cagey Beast
  106. anon[238] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    It has made no sense to expand NATO. It was never seriously discussed. It just happened. Carelessly and thoughtlessly.

  107. Dmitry says:

    It’s a little more complicated than in American media.

    There has been low-level fighting between Georgian forces and South Ossetian forces for a long time, which then escalate in the summer, just before the Georgian invasion.

    Saakashvili is without doubts, an insane idiot and launches invasion and shelling of capital of South Ossetia (it’s directly next to the border of Georgia), shelling many civilians – completely disregarding status quo and international law.

    In response Russian forces move immediately in and recapture the city within several days of fighting.

    Unpleasant part is some overreaction beyond simply local military actions, with airstrikes on Georgian cities, and shelling of and capture Gori, and quite a number of civilian deaths inside Georgia, which continue after Georgian withdrawal.

    Many commentators on Sailor’s forum are old, and should easily remember when we are all one country. So you can understand how dysfunctional this is – airstrikes extending to Tbilisi, etc.

    Even retrospectively, it seems quite insane, since relations with Georgia are now peaceful again, and streets of Georgian cities are now full of Russian tourists, who are one of the keys to their economic recovery.

    Journalists covering this topic could have two points.
    1. Insane actions of Saakashvili, who is the primarily responsible for the escalation of the conflict.
    2. Unfortunate over spill beyond local military actions (airstrikes on Georgian cities continuing past Georgian withdrawal), which will have long term consequences on relations with the Georgian nation that take years to rebuild.
    3. Importance of Russia to Georgia’s economic recovery.

    On point 1. – what is the role of the United States and Bush administration, in encouraging Saakashvili’s crazy actions?

    On point 2. – this is obviously some mistakes by military command.

    On point 3 – There is now visa-free relations between Russia and Georgia.
    Georgia now is becoming one of the most popular tourist attractions in Russia – 1.3 million tourists visit per year. Georgia’s economy is developing steadily, with tourism one of their main industries. Georgia is a very fashionable holiday resort in Russia. So we can expect chances of another war fortunately are fading.

    My experience on the few times I met Georgians and asked about the topic:
    They say something like “we love Russian people, we hate Saakashvili and we hate the Kremlin.”

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @Jack D
  108. LondonBob says:
    @Candide III

    You know someone is peddling propaganda when they use that line, the context Putin meant was there was no counter balance to the US geopolitically, it speaks of the belief that a multipolar world is more stable, not any desire to recreate the USSR.

    https://exiledonline.com/the-day-americas-empire-died/all/1/

    “I have never been so proud of Russia — magnificent Russia!” Bobrun crows, an AK strapped over his shoulder. “For twenty years we just talked and talked, blabbed and blabbed, complained and complained. But we did nothing, while America ran wild and took everything it could. Twenty years of empty talk. Now Russia is back. And you see how great Russia is. Look around you — we’re not trying to annex this land. What the fuck do I need Georgia for? Russia could keep this, but what for? Hell, we could conquer the whole world if we wanted to. That’s a fact. It was Russia that saved Europe from Genghis Khan. Russia could have taken India and the Middle East. We could take anything — we took Alaska, we took California. There is nothing that Russia could not take, and now the world is being reminded again.”

    • Replies: @Jack D
    , @Candide III
  109. Jack D says:
    @Desiderius

    Your main beef with the Patriots is their desire to win at any cost, yet you say winning for the Eagles is good.

    This makes perfect sense because I am an Eagles fan (and the other statement makes sense because I am an America fan).

    • Replies: @Cagey Beast
    , @Anon
  110. ic1000 says:
    @Dave Pinsen

    > America’s (and Western Europe’s, to a lesser extent) retro obsession with Russia is what you’d want, if you were China. In light of the Feinstein revelations, to what extent is it due to Chinese influence?

    “What Feinstein revelations?” How many minutes or column-inches has this story gotten in the prestige press, compared to Trump getting the KGB to throw the 2016 election to him (as proven by Fusion-sourced FISA warrants and Manafort’s tax evasion)?

    BTW, Dave Pinsen, your comments from the 2016 iSteve post that he linked to in the OP hold up well (#1, 79, 110). On the issue of “who did what in the early hours of the 2008 Georgia-Russia war?”, my comment #105 highlighted unasked/unanswered questions about the Georgians’ astonishing failure to block the Russians from reinforcing beleaguered South Ossetia via the Trans-Caucasus Highway (Roki Tunnel, Didi Gupta Bridge). (The initial priority of the Georgians was to pound the South Ossetian capital city into rubble with their artillery. That was obviously a stupid war aim at the time, and remains so in retrospect.)

    My own guess (and it’s just that) is that the Russians were able to stoke Georgian Army overconfidence in their faulty planning for a Lightning War, perhaps through espionage at the General Staff level.

    Insight into this issue would help fill out the history of the run-up to the war, but AFAIK nothing new has come to light in the past two years. There doesn’t seem to be much interest in, y’know, facts.

    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
  111. Dmitry says:
    @Dmitry

    My experience on the few times I met Georgians and asked about the topic:
    They say something like “we love Russian people, we hate Saakashvili and we hate the Kremlin.”

    One of few Georgian guys who I have met, said something exactly like this – he is the son of a politician who is an opponent of Saakashvili.

    It is possible Georgian waiters are spitting in your food when you go on holiday there. But the tourist industry really is an important moderator on international relation. Now Georgia is becoming such a fashionable tourist destination – you could infer it will be highly unlikely they will do any future provocations to endanger their relations with their main visiting customer.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  112. Lot says:
    @Romanian

    Ukraine had no ability to maintain those nukes, which were largely paid for and maintained by Russians, and belonged in Russia as the USSR’s successor state.

    Its borders in 1992 made no sense given the differences between Russian and Ukranian speaking regions.

    • Replies: @Jack D
    , @Candide III
    , @Romanian
  113. @Jack D

    But you’re assuming the coach and staff of the Eagles have been making the right calls. At least with sports, winning and losing strategies quickly become evident. With big organisations like NATO, this isn’t the case. NATO and the EU just keep justifying their own existence by expanding or finding new projects for themselves.

    In our modern western democracies, there was no opposing team on the field to prove them wrong, until recently. It’s only by running up against Russia; Trump; and the new Italian, Polish, Hungarian, Austrian and Czech governments that the NATO/EU juggernauts have had to pause in their expansion.

  114. Jack D says:
    @Anon

    Except that, so far, WWIII has not broken out and so far the Baltics have in fact been saved from the Russians. Putin, unlike Hitler, is a very rational person and he only makes a move when he thinks he has a high chance of getting away with it, so it is in the US’s interest to convince him that he can’t get away with certain things and then the status quo will be maintained. If OTOH we signal to him that he can do whatever he wants, then he will.

  115. @gcochran

    There’s a hell of a difference between 1% a year and 1% a generation.

    Shouldn’t that be “a Lot of a difference”?

  116. Jack D says:
    @The Anti-Gnostic

    There is a big gap between what Putin would LIKE to do and what Russia is currently CAPABLE of doing (and Putin, more than anyone, is aware of that gap and is always careful not to have his reach exceed his grasp at any given moment although he may probe a little to see how far he can really go). But, if a genie were to appear before Putin I have no doubt that his #1 wish would be to restore to Russia (with Putin as Czar) the power and territorial reach of the Soviet Union. I would also say that restoring the Soviet Union (even with its ideological goals now shifted from World Communism to Great Russian nationalism) conflicts with many of the geopolitical goals of the United States. As such, Russia is our rival whether we like it or not. As Trostky supposed said (but probably didn’t), you may not be interested in war, but war is interested in you.

    • Replies: @Reactionary Utopian
  117. @Hunsdon

    Yes exactly; the big brains of the western foreign policy establishment seem to think Putin is some sort of Louis XVI or Nero figure who can be blindsided while he fusses over fireworks and ice sculptures. These people are dangerous idiots.

  118. @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    Looks like you went to the same charm school as anti-Ambassador McFaul:

    • Replies: @Jack D
  119. LondonBob says:
    @Anon

    There was a lot of resistance to the Boer War in Britain, it was seen as stupid, vicious and done for the benefit of certain special financial interests. The anti-jewish element of the anti-war movement here really got its start then. The Boer War was a terrible mistake, much like Libya, Iraq, Syria or Afghanistan today.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  120. Jack D says:
    @Dmitry

    On point 2. – this is obviously some mistakes by military command.

    If only the Czar knew! I would bet my last kopek that the entire Russian military plan, down to the last detail and including the bombing of Tbilisi, was approved at the highest level, i.e. by Putin himself.

    Future historians are in for a real treat when Putin dies (he doesn’t really seem to have planned for any successor gangster to take power – as head gangster you never do this because then your successor might decide to speed things up a little) and the Putin archives are opened. The stuff that was revealed when Yanukovych was ousted was eye opening and the Putin archives will be a thousand times more so.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  121. Jack D says:
    @Lot

    Nevertheless, the deal was made to exchange them in exchange for guaranties on Ukraine’s territorial integrity and this treaty was not later honored by Putin.

    There is no real way (the Hague notwithstanding) of enforcing treaties of this sort other than thru military action (diplomacy by other means) but anyone treating with Russia should keep in mind their history of dishonoring treaties. And no, the United States is not remotely comparable.

  122. @Jack D

    … some people around here seem to be positively cheering Russia on and seem to forget that the Putin sees Russia as opposed to Western interests and that we, as Westerners, are the people that the Russians oppose.

    Putin and his government are opposed to the current “western consensus”, not the West. A lot of us in the West are opposed to it as well, precisely because it will bring about the death of the West if it’s not pushed aside. Trump, in his own way, gets this. So do many of his supporters and so do the supporters of “far right populist” movements in Europe. It’s because we want to save our West that many of us prefer Putin to the globalist consensus.

    • Agree: Romanian
    • Replies: @Hunsdon
  123. Jack D says:
    @Anthony Wayne

    Neville Chamberlain asked the same question. Except instead of “sh*tholes that have nothing to do with us” he called them in “far away countr[ies with ] people of whom we know nothing.” I guess he found out the answer the hard way.

    We defend Warsaw so we don’t have to defend Berlin. We defend Berlin so we don’t have to defend London. We defend London so we don’t have to defend Washington.

    • Agree: Johann Ricke
  124. @Anon

    I don’t think American foreign policy is beholden to some hand shake deal someone claims James Baker offered get. Russia violates agreements on paper and then try’s to claim that’s ok because they got this verbal promise one time that the US made.

    • Replies: @Candide III
    , @Hunsdon
  125. Jack D says:
    @Dmitry

    The waiters of Batumi are not the ones making policy. If it was up to the waiters of Havana, American tourists would still be filling the Havana Hilton but nobody asked them.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  126. @Mr. Anon

    Look clear Jack’s enmity is let’s just say generational but I’m a founding stock American who like most founding stock Americans has always always seen the Russian character as extremely foreign and worthy of extremely vigilance when our worlds overlap.

    And yes Jack is exaggerating and smearing his enemies by claiming the alt right in general is full of pro-Russia ideologues. But this site definitely is and there is a small vocal minority who absolutely would love to see Russia prevail over the USA.

    • Replies: @Cagey Beast
    , @Mr. Anon
  127. Lot says:
    @Kyiv-Rus

    Israel’s neighbors’ anti-Israel stuff seems to now just be going through the motions by habit.

    Assad Sr used to have awesome huge F-16 v MiG air battles with Israel in the 70s and 80s. Now it is just a few drones and other phoney war stuff. Egypt and Saudi are basically Israel allies. Hezbollah isn’t shooting rockets and trying to kidnap soldiers anymore.

  128. @El Dato

    So why are you worried about the fat baby instead of the aging, senile, and vainglorious old man with nuclear weapons and the slight smell of piss.

    It was Russia not Israel that placed nuclear missions 90 miles off our coast and its Russia that brags about developing nuclear munitions that can destroy this country.

    • Replies: @Anon
    , @ATBOTL
    , @El Dato
  129. Jack D says:
    @LondonBob

    “Everything that the Georgians left behind, I mean everything, was American. All the guns, grenades, uniforms, boots, food rations — they just left it all. Our boys stuffed themselves on the food,” he adds slyly. “It was tasty.”

    1. I guess the Russians trusted that the Georgians would not have booby trapped/poisoned the food the way that they would have.

    2. I guess Russia is maintaining its tradition of not feeding its troops adequately so that they have to forage for better food. Do they still take wristwatches off the locals and take liberties with the local frauleins too?

    Bobrun seems a little triumphalist – he had just take a 3rd rate city from a 4th rate army. This was not exactly like raising the hammer and sickle over the Reichstag. The name Bobrun will not go down with Zhukov.

  130. Anon[202] • Disclaimer says:
    @Sam Haysom

    And we have “nuclear missions” 500 miles from Russia for what reason exactly?

  131. @Sam Haysom

    Very well, sir, I’ll remember that the next time I’m sitting on a couple of thousands of nuclear warheads.

  132. Anon[202] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    Compared to US conquest of the Cherokee and Crow nations (etc. etc.) it seems we’re about even. Poland is no longer part of Russia; when’s New Mexico getting returned again?

  133. Anon[202] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    Right, because I’m an Eagles fan I should pay for equipment to help the Jets to beat the Patriots why exactly?

  134. @Anon

    Pfui. Nobody’s oppressing ethnic Russians much even now, in 2018, never mind before the war started. Even the much-hullaballooed idiocy of Svoboda moving to repeal some very recent pro-Russian-language legislation didn’t mean anything in practice, because Acting President Turchynov refused to sign off on it. Half of Kiev is still talking Russian, half of the Ukrainian army is talking Russian, Russian-language newspapers in opposition to government are sold from newsstands and distributed on the streets and nobody minds. The government does put a stop to imports of overtly anti-Ukrainian TV content, and it does prosecute sedition, but that’s par for the course, since after all there’s a sort of a war going on.

  135. @Cagey Beast

    Kudos for quoting Putin at length, and how does that invalidate my thesis exactly?

    • Replies: @Cagey Beast
  136. @Sam Haysom

    But this site definitely is and there is a small vocal minority who absolutely would love to see Russia prevail over the USA.

    No, I’d like to see the USA pull back from its imperial follies and interference in other countries. That’s not the same as wanting Russia to prevail over you globally.

  137. @Lot

    The nukes were paid for and maintained by USSR, which at that time included Ukraine, so I could argue that Ukraine had paid for its share, both in money and in blood – many of Ukraine’s best brains routinely went to Moscow because that’s where everything was at. As for maintaining them, the USA doesn’t produce anywhere enough tritium at the moment to maintain its nuke stockpiles, so should it follow your logic and chuck them into the sea perhaps, or give them away to the Chinese?

  138. @LondonBob

    Luckily for me, a different commenter has provided the context of that quote, so you can just scroll up a bit from your post and see that Putin wasn’t talking about geopolitical balance with the USA.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
  139. @Anon

    War games aren’t usually performed on the territory of the prospective enemy. If they are, they are called “war” not “war games”. Incidentally, Russia routinely runs its war games near its western borders.

  140. @Jack D

    Siberia and Central Asia are mere geographical expressions, where was little civilisation and certainly no countries in these parts until the Russians began to settle there. The same is true for Novorossia, which is now known as “South-Eastern Ukraine”.

    Like many Western Russophobes you neglect the civilizing role of the Russian Empire and make it look as if Russians oppressed “countries”, which didn’t even exist until the Russians got there.

    • Agree: Dmitry
    • Replies: @Romanian
  141. APilgrim says:

    STEVE SAILER,

    Yes, your 2016 summary of the Georgia War roughly matches my recollection of the events.

    South Ossetia & Abkhazia were seeking autonomy from the Georgia Republic. Georgian Armed Forces attacked South Ossetia civilian areas. Leaders of the break-away republic sought military assistance from the Russian Army; which had also recently finished a round of war games. The CIA had a ship in range, and a land-based support group inside the Georgia Republic, near the border.

    The Russian Army routed Georgia in record time.

  142. Lot says:
    @Anonymous

    That is silly, the residents are nearly all loyal Russians and those borders are about 75 years old.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  143. WSJ: “When We Were At (Proxy) War”

    Sack-Assed Willie and the Tie-Biters did a cover of this but it flopped.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  144. ATBOTL says:
    @Jack D

    Neocon and pitbull lover is an ugly combination.

  145. @Jack D

    We defend Warsaw so we don’t have to defend Berlin. We defend Berlin so we don’t have to defend London. We defend London so we don’t have to defend Washington.

    This is just silliness. Is the idea that Russia invades the Baltics, drafts the Latvian folk dancers, rolls into Eastern Europe and picks up Polish and Hungarian mercs, then conquers Western Europe with the Mighty Pan-Slavic Army?

    And with Russian ranks swelled by German, French, Spanish draftees it’s on to London?

    Then across the Atlantic to Washington D.C.?

    Assuming this threat is real, and I’m hardly convinced it is, then Trump’s approach to our erstwhile NATO allies is exactly correct: Europeans are spending too much on welfare, enabling corrosive Muslim immigration, and free-riding on defense.

  146. ATBOTL says:
    @Sam Haysom

    Good point. It was also Russians who ran America’s media industries for the last 100 years and promoted open borders and multi-culturalism. Russians are leading the efforts in America to censor non-PC speech. Russians are also the intellectual leaders, organizers and funders of anti-white activism here in America. Russians are in a dominate position at our most prestigious university which they use to promote cultural marxism too.

    • Replies: @Sam Haysom
  147. Jack D says:
    @Cagey Beast

    I would take this as a sign that Seagal didn’t write that statement at all and that it was written by his Russian handlers. Also the capitalization of Humanitarian is a hint.

  148. LondonBob says:
    @Candide III

    Err the quote means exactly what I said it does. Then he goes on to talk about the effect on the Russian people themselves, hence the use of as for. It is a common theme of Russian geopolitical thinking, reiterated by Putin here.

  149. Jack D says:
    @Cagey Beast

    Russian need better tailors. Those dead sheep they are wearing on their shoulders look horrible. The Nazis were evil but at least they looked good. You would not have caught von Ribbentrop dead wearing a coat (cape?) tailored like that,if you can even call it tailoring. I have seen furniture blankets that are more tailored.

    • Replies: @Hunsdon
  150. Jack D says:
    @Lot

    Yes it is silly but it is emblematic of the Russian way of thinking. Russia needs to conquer Estonia because if they don’t then the West will take Kaliningrad (and then on to Moscow). They project onto the West how they would behave in the same situation and then they defend as if the West has already done it and they are merely acting defensively.

    • Replies: @Anon
    , @Hunsdon
    , @Dmitry
    , @Anonymous
  151. @Candide III

    Because it shows Putin was not saying the loss of the Soviet Union was the tragedy, the tragedy was the abandonment of so many ethnic Russians in the other Soviet republics and the economic collapse that accompanied this. It would be mendacious to say Putin wants the Soviet Union back, he just says its sudden and chaotic collapse brought about widespread hardships for the Russian people.

    • Replies: @Romanian
  152. Dmitry says:
    @Jack D

    Target bank selection and all military tactics, is by the military commanders, who understand how military operations work and what their capabilities are. Politicians like Medvedev and Putin have little military knowledge or understanding, are not experts. but simply sign off on the plans, without deep personal knowledge of how much force is required to achieve goals – these plans are written by experts.

    Retrospectively, with 10 years of wisdom, the airstrikes at the end of the conflict are seeming to be excessive and unfortunate – considering how we know how transitory was Saakashvili, while our relation with the Georgian nation is permanent and it will always be a neighbour, and now relations could even become an ally. Aggression of Georgia’s leadership was defeated already by 10 August .

    As for describing Putin as “gangster” – it just appears to be your jingoism, no different to people describing American leaders as “gangsters” (this kind of rhetoric sounds just as silly from either side). It’s a democratically elected politicians, quite moderate, and especially a moderate leader in international relations. He’s incompetent in some areas, while competent in others – overall he’s slightly better than recent American presidents, but nothing particularly brilliant either.

    But being “gangster” is also a compliment in American idiomatic English – so perhaps you are a rap fan, and mean this as a compliment.

  153. @Jack D

    Neville Chamberlain asked the same question. Except instead of “sh*tholes that have nothing to do with us” he called them in “far away countr[ies with ] people of whom we know nothing.” I guess he found out the answer the hard way.

    We defend Warsaw so we don’t have to defend Berlin. We defend Berlin so we don’t have to defend London. We defend London so we don’t have to defend Washington.

    It’s a fairly basic principle modeled even in board games. The more territory they gain, the stronger they get and the weaker we are, in relative terms. That’s why we are wise to attempt to stop any additional gains. Then there’s the issue of Russian moves tempting other countries to do things they have wanted to do for a long time. Without Germany’s conquest of much of Europe, would the Pearl Harbor attack have materialized?

    • Replies: @Anthony Wayne
  154. I know you’re joking but you reminded me of a question I’ve asked myself more than once: what kind of Russia would make Washington happy? What changes should Russia have made since the collapse of the USSR that would allow Washington to cross Russia off its list of concerns? Maybe if they’d had a series of Russian Saakashvili’s bumbling through the Kremlin and speaking proper English when spoken to? A Russia that got rid of that wonky alphabet and complicated language? A Russia that just went extinct? I think Washington finds Russia’s continued existence intolerably insolent.

    If it had its way, Washington would not give it a rest until Russia simply ceased to exist. It’s pretty much the same with all of us. If we keep our mouths shut, watch TV and stay out of the way of the governing class, then they might move on and pester someone else. If Russia had its own Justin Trudeau in charge then maybe Washington would just laugh and move on to some other country to find their “new Hitler”.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  155. Dmitry says:
    @Jack D

    Georgia is a very small, very poor economy (although ruled with a wealthy elite). Their relation with Russia is essential for their economic future, which is now starting to improve – tourism is one of the main drivers of this.

    Compared to ten years ago, Georgia’s tourist industry is really doing very well, growing fast, and it’s recently a very fashionable resort in Russia. Prospects of them throwing this away, are low, and current attitudes in Georgia are becoming much more pragmatic than under the authoritarian Saakashvili.

    This does not mean Russia will or should abnegate protection of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. It’s for Georgia itself to improve its relations with these republics.

    We can hope for continued improvement in relations – and peaceful relations with Georgia is good news for both sides, and even (should be) for America.

    -

    Now if we look at Russian side. In Levada Centre’s annual friends and enemies rankings.

    The proportion of public who view Georgia as a a “top 5 enemy country” -

    In 2008, it was 62% of people viewing Georgia as an enemy country.

    By 2011, this has fallen a little to 50% of people.

    By 2018, now only 8% of people in Russia view Georgia as an enemy.

    https://www.levada.ru/2018/06/14/druzya-i-vragi-rossii-3/

    The improvement in relations, on the public opinion level on the Russian side.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  156. Anon[202] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    I wonder how Jack D would react to a comment made in the respectful tone of a German intellectual and beginning Yes it is silly but it is emblematic of the Jewish way of thinking?

    • Replies: @Jack D
  157. @Jack D

    I would also say that restoring the Soviet Union (even with its ideological goals now shifted from World Communism to Great Russian nationalism) conflicts with many of the geopolitical goals of the United States.

    What are these geopolitical goals of which you speak?

    Have they ever been listed for the inspection of we US peasants?

    Go ahead, list, say, just ten of these great geopolitical goals. It should be easy, since there are “many” in conflict with some eeee-vil Russian something-or-other.

    As such, Russia is our rival whether we like it or not.

    Who’s “we?” Are you pregnant? Got a tapeworm? Got a turd in your pocket?

  158. Washington won’t stop until every country is in chaos.

    Putin is afraid of one thing. Make him think it could happen.
    By Michael Morell
    August 7 at 4:03 PM
    [...]
    Putin is afraid of one thing. He is afraid that one day the Russian middle class will finally rebel against his regime and rush into the streets demanding change. It happened in Tunis, Cairo and other Middle Eastern and North African cities between 2010 and 2012, and it happened most alarmingly, from Putin’s perspective, four years ago in Kiev when Ukrainians threw out a government beholden to Moscow. Sanctions that bite at the heart of the Russian economy — sanctions that increase the risk that Russia’s middle class will become restive — will get Putin’s attention.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/putin-is-afraid-of-one-thing-make-him-think-it-could-happen/2018/08/07/edbe08b4-998b-11e8-b60b-1c897f17e185_story.html

    The same Mike Morell:
    Q: “Make them pay the price by killing Russians?”
    A: “Yes”

    • Replies: @vinteuil
  159. Jack D says:
    @Anon

    It depends on what “it” is. For example, Israel has made it very clear that it will not tolerate any violation of its sovereignty and accordingly shoots down any Syrian aircraft that happens to stray over its border, even accidentally, even if that aircraft is not targeting any Israeli target. You could say that is silly (and not unlike the old Soviet habit of shooting down passenger planes that strayed over Soviet territory, although the Russian examples are usually leavened by Russian (drunken?) incompetence in confusing passenger jets for military aircraft) but that it is emblematic of the Jewish (or at least Israeli) way of thinking and I would not object to that statement. Unless you are some sort of blank slatist, it is pretty clear that most nations have long running national characteristics that are remarkably constant over time.

    • Replies: @El Dato
  160. Jack D says:
    @Dmitry

    This does not mean Russia will or should abnegate protection of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. It’s for Georgia itself to improve its relations with these republics.

    This assumes that Abkhazia and S. Ossetia are capable of having relations independent of the instructions of Moscow. I submit that is not true.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  161. El Dato says:
    @Sam Haysom

    It was Russia not Israel that placed nuclear missions 90 miles off our coast and its Russia that brags about developing nuclear munitions that can destroy this country.

    MUH NUCULAR SUPREMACY!! CHALLENGED!!

    No wait you are probably from Angry Baby Country.

    Anyway, it’s easier to have the “democracy” in your pocket and have it fight wars on your behalf while demanding warcrap delivered at zero cost, or just simply buckets of cash, direct, because “there must be no daylight between us”. As a trump card, procurement of nuclear weapons for by stealing US HEU, leaving a superfund site to be cleaned up comes as a side dish.

    History Brotip: That “Nuclear missions” thing was a REACTION to US nukes in Turkey.

    • Replies: @Sam Haysom
  162. El Dato says:
    @Jack D

    Please count them

    So it’s 1?

    “Siberia and parts of Central Asia, less Alaska”

    I have to say, if I was part of a people that got almost genocided by the Khanate coming out of the steppe I would not miss trying to conquer the fuck out of everything to the East as far as possible as soon as possible.

  163. Romanian says: • Website
    @g2k

    You do know you can read the Memorandum online.

    https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Ukraine._Memorandum_on_Security_Assurances

    It does not establish the Finlandization of Ukraine under Russia.

    Unshakably Atlanticist? Was that when former Chairman of the CIS Viktor Yanukovych became President just one electoral cycle after the fabled Orange Revolution? Or the day after he left the country and a Civil War was instigated (not in Kiev, in my opinion)? Ukraine is a basket case, Russia just took advantage of that and facilitated it remaining that way. I can understand wanting a good warm water port, but your view is disingenuous. It is power politics and real politik, don’t clothe it in legalist terms that make what happens sound just. Russia saw its chance and took it, on the flimsiest of excuses, and damn anything it signed in the past! Of course, Ukraine is not an easy country to deal with, and it played whatever cards it had in relation with Russia, by that meaning the squeeze on the energy pipeline and the will it won’t it on the extending the Sevastopol lease past 2017.

  164. El Dato says:
    @Jack D

    You could say that is silly (and not unlike the old Soviet habit of shooting down passenger planes that strayed over Soviet territory

    How often did that happen?

    KAL 007 doesn’t really count, the Soviets were triggered and on the lookout for a US spy mission and along comes this Korean thing on a completely wrong course that nobody in the cockpit even noticed was being flown (“The sun should have come up by now” … Yes, idiots?)

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  165. Romanian says: • Website
    @Lot

    Agreed that the nuke situation had to be resolved, and the Black Sea is still a transit point for illegal nuclear material and technology, a lot of it coming from Russia and the stans.

    Reference here https://www.files.ethz.ch/isn/193512/NeighbourhoodPolicyPaper(16).pdf

    But Russia gave those security guarantees in order to become a part of the solution to the Ukrainian problem, and to keep it from being resolved by the Westerners alone, who would have taken the weapons and reverse engineered them or whatever. The borders of many Soviet successor states did not make sense and the Soviets preferred it that way, knowing that splits would be done along administrative lines and trying to maintain the fiction that the constituent nations of the USSR were free to exercise self-determination. Western & Catholic Ukraine would be in EU/NATO by now, Ukraine as is is a basket case no man’s land. Moldova without Transnistria would be reunited with Romania on the defensible Dniester. Nagorno would be in Armenia, with a strip of land for Nakchevan to be in Azerbaijan directly etc.

    Quote

    As of December 2013, five of the
    seven most recent trafficking incidents involving HEU
    outside authorized control had taken place in the Black
    Sea region.45 According to the International Atomic
    Energy Agency (IAEA), such material has been seized
    on four separate occasions (2003, 2006, 2010, and
    2011) in Moldova and Georgia.46 The former Soviet
    Union, and most precisely Russia (nearly 100 trafficking
    incidents recorded between 1991 and 2012 involving
    nuclear material) and the former Soviet Republics
    of Central Asia (92 trafficking incidents recorded
    in Central Asia between 1991 and 2012), has been
    identified as the primary source of proliferation.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  166. Jack D says:
    @Cagey Beast

    I think the expectation (or at least the hope) was that Russia would become a “normal country” and integrate with the West in much the way that say Poland has (and even Poland is now begin to recoil from its embrace of the modern West). That was probably not realistic given Russia’s history (which is that it is as semi-Asiatic country and that either they have a strong autocratic ruler (yes I know Putin is elected) or else they descend into chaos) but there’s still a chance that if Putin had not appeared they could have achieved something closer to (if not 100% like) Western democracy and a Western (non-oligarch controlled) economy. Every once in a while a figure emerges who single handedly changes the course of history and I think that Putin is (for better or for worse) one of them.

    • Replies: @vinteuil
    , @Johann Ricke
  167. El Dato says:

    In time for the 10-year anniversary of the Georgiafail event: more sanctions

    US to impose new sanctions on Russia over Skripal poisoning

    It’s good that certain assassinations linked to Israel with far higher likelihood than this here Brith clownshow linked to “Russia” are all considered A-ok. Just imagine one would have to discuss those.

    I wonder when/where the next event of interest will occur. Sarin use in Ukraine?

  168. “if Putin had not appeared they could have achieved something closer to (if not 100% like) Western democracy and a Western (non-oligarch controlled) economy.”

    Quite the opposite, Putin in fact threw out the (((oligarchs))). And God bless him for it.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    , @Dmitry
  169. Jack D says:
    @Romanian

    who would have taken the weapons and reverse engineered them

    I really don’t think that the US could have gained much by reverse engineering a bunch of outdated Russian nuclear weapons designs. During the entire Cold War, the Russians stole all sorts of Western technology and infiltrated Western governments to the highest levels, while the corresponding Western efforts were, by comparison, lame and amateurish (American make the worst spies – they have no knack for it) and yet it made zero difference to the outcome in the end.

  170. Romanian says: • Website
    @Felix Keverich

    Yeah, Siberia was that, but Central Asia had plenty of countries and civilizations, though in the same state of territorial flux as states elsewhere. Remember the Silk Road?

    Russia reacted to its geographical vulnerability by punching through something that was pretty much hollow till the Pacific. But Central Asia was not Siberia. Its European adventures are also much more bloody and apt to provoke resentment and suspicion even today.

  171. El Dato says:

    ‘Russian meddling’: Alyssa Milano floats Moscow-Green Party conspiracy after Ohio vote

    Lefty Alyssa Milano is reeling from what looks like another election loss for the Democrats in Ohio. The actress decided to take time to calmly analyse where her party went wrong. Only joking! She blamed Russians of course!

    The Republicans secured a narrow election win in a conservative area, where the party spent millions on ads and activists. Milano has spoken for a generation of hysterical Democrats by coming to the only conclusion possible – Moscow did it, and may have been in cahoots with the Green Party.

    “Democracy is a failure if I don’t get the votes.”

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  172. Romanian says: • Website
    @Cagey Beast

    I can imagine that if Tibet were to gain independence, China would mourn the loss of so many ethnic Han that happened to be there by way of having been colonizing the area. It may even consider itself justified in heavy handed interventions to protect their rights. Let’s be serious here – Latvia is not Kazakhstan. Latvia was a nice chunk of land, but there was no civilizing mission or frontier for Russian population to grow from 100k in 1920 to 900k in 2000. Any more such tragedy and there would be a case for taking it over.

  173. Hunsdon says:
    @Sam Haysom

    How about this, even if there was no promise, George Kennan still thought NATO expansion was a stupid idea? At the time, in my youthful naivete, I thought Kennan wrong, but I have matured and realized that, no, it was Hunsdon who was wrong.

    • Replies: @Sam Haysom
  174. @El Dato

    How do I tell Alyssa Milano from Demi Lovato?

    • Replies: @MikeatMikedotMike
  175. @fredyetagain aka superhonky

    Looks like there are plenty of Russian oligarchs constructing 50,000 sq. ft. winter homes in Bel-Air right now. Somehow I don’t think Russia is plumb out of oligarchs yet even after 18 years of Putin.

  176. @El Dato

    There was a Soviet shootdown of a passenger jet in 1978:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Korean_Air_Lines_Flight_902

    Fortunately, only 2 people were killed.

    The 1980s movie White Nights starring Mikhail Baryshnikov and Gregory Hines was inspired by that, starting its plot with a Baryshnikov-type ballet superstar defector being on the plane that strays over Soviet airspace and is forced down.

    The movie wasn’t particularly good, but it wasn’t terrible either, especially if you like ballet and/or tap.

  177. Hunsdon says:
    @Jack D

    Wait, Jack, didn’t you just say, earlier, that “We defend Warsaw so we don’t have to defend Berlin. We defend Berlin so we don’t have to defend London. We defend London so we don’t have to defend Washington.”

    And then you say, “Russia needs to conquer Estonia because if they don’t then the West will take Kaliningrad (and then on to Moscow). They project onto the West how they would behave in the same situation and then they defend as if the West has already done it and they are merely acting defensively.”

    How about “We must bring Ukraine into NATO so we don’t have to defend Warsaw so we don’t have to defend Berlin?”

  178. Hunsdon says:
    @Jack D

    Jack, you seem to resort to ad hominem and invective against Russia at the drop of a shlapka, or ushanka.

    • Replies: @utu
  179. utu says:

    Georgia was used by neocons and Israel to create troubles for Putin because Putin put stop to Jewish Eldorado of extracting wealth from Russia. It was possible because Mikheil Saakashvili was the NWO (CIA/Mossad) asset. Israeli companies that supplied weapons and security equipment to Georgia made good money.

  180. Hunsdon says:
    @Steve Sailer

    Perhaps better to say that Putin brought the oligarchs to heel?

  181. vinteuil says:
    @Jack D

    …if Putin had not appeared they could have achieved something closer to (if not 100% like) Western democracy and a Western (non-oligarch controlled) economy…

    I.e., the Russian people could have gone on dying out for the good of the Global Elite.

  182. utu says:
    @Hunsdon

    This is because Jews lost Russia twice. First to Stalin in late 1930s and then to Putin in 2000s.

  183. @ATBOTL

    But Israelis don’t do that either. Which is kind of my point. Vladimir Putin actually worked for the regime and organization that plotted all sorts of nasty outcomes for the US. So you personally are welcome to hate Jews all you like and Israel if you want but why don’t you hate Russia as well?

    It isn’t logically to act like oh Russia should get a pass that was just the communist even though sure Putin was a communist too and a KGBer to boot and then hold Israel responsible for everything you think the Jews did to you.

  184. @El Dato

    Honestly fuck you. And I love how two people pounced on a slight typo. That’s really indicative of a movement that is confident in their arguments and pleasant to be around.

    Again I don’t care why the Russians did what they did. They threatened this country that my ancestors carved out of the wilderness- something I doubt describes your ancestors- if you want to play the ethnicity game bitch with nuclear annhilation. Israel never did that. So clearly US interests don’t mean shit to you. You want to side with those same bastards.

    I’m just kidding I know you are a Russian troll.

    • Replies: @Hunsdon
    , @Le Autiste Corv
  185. @Hunsdon

    No offense Hundson but you aren’t exactly the person I’d model my aging gracefully template on. Are we beholden to what Kennan thinks about something. Which other stare department functionaries get to conduct personal diplomacy. At least Roman consuls were commanding armies in the field when their diplomatic wrangling began to supplant the senate-I’m really not sure if firing off one telegram means that you get to dictate American foreign policy for the next fifty years.

    How about this- Russian behaved with incalculable creulty and barbarism for damn never seventy years during which time they actively tried to subvert this nation (which means a lot to me maybe not to you) or alternative destroy it with nuclear weapons. So regardless of what those Harvard economist did to Russia I’m not going to cheerlead Russian expansionism or take their complaints about bullying very seriously.

    Again all I want is consistency. no more of this eternal hostility and never forget for one group and oh hey they never really meant it for another group. Don’t shout remember the USS Liberty and then turn around and act like it’s a disgrace to hold Russia to account for its Cold War thuggishness.

    • Replies: @Hunsdon
  186. @Jack D

    That was probably not realistic given Russia’s history (which is that it is as semi-Asiatic country and that either they have a strong autocratic ruler (yes I know Putin is elected) or else they descend into chaos)

    I think it’s more that Russia is a vast empire held together by force. Without that force, we get a collection of independent countries. We kind of need Russia in one piece to prevent China from getting any bigger. A dozen Russias means China’s immediate annexation of Mongolia, followed by a good chunk of Russia east of the Urals. The problem is that Russia seems intent on expanding its territory in Europe, when it should be contesting Chinese expansion into Central Asia.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  187. utu says:

    2015 Putin’s move to Syria was most risky and daring but also long overdue as a response to Georgia and then Ukraine affairs. Putin knew that Jack D.’s of this world were behind many troubles Russia was in. The engagement in Syria succeeded because of the spat between Netanyahu and Obama. The former thought it would trap Putin and provoke Obama’s engagement in the neighborhood but it produced an opposite results. In 2015 Netanyahu still could stop it but he tripped on his own legs. And it was Obama’s time for payback to Netanyahu and working on his legacy.

    The position of Russia in Syria is very precarious because Russia force is small and can be easily overwhelmed by Israel or Turkey conventional attack, however Israel is the soft spot of American Empire and Russia wanted to be close to it. Bringing low range nukes to put Israel under a direct thread changed everything. Putin must demonstrate his credibility so he is believed that he will play the ultimate card if needed. In the meantime the US is hoping to stir enough resentment in inner circles of Russia’s establishment to promote a coup against Putin. And all the time China is looking closely to see if Russia has enough spine to resits the pressure to find out whether Russia is worthy to be China’s ally. We will see where Russia and China stand on Iran soon, I think.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  188. @Johann Ricke

    Global politics as board game is not a worldview that lends itself to good diplomacy.

    Of course you Russia alarmists miss the game here: the ability to check China that a long-term cooling/eventual alliance with Russia could create.

  189. Dmitry says:
    @Jack D

    No-one wants to “conquer Estonia” – Estonia in some ways (economic policy) has been quite successful by itself.

    Although America might want to look into the rise of Nazism in Estonia and the policy of discrimination, denial of citizens and denial of Russian language education of Russian speaking population.

    The latter is against EU stated values and international law, while the former – for Americans (although some support Nazism on this website), is against the values you supposedly were supporting in the Second World War

  190. Dmitry says:
    @Steve Sailer

    Number of oligarchs has increased by vast numbers since 1999. Which is not a bad thing – it is a symptom of the growing economy of the 2000s, even if the benefits are unequally distributed, and the wealthy benefited from the success more than the poor. The cake itself got significantly larger since 1999, so number of oligarchs and newly wealthy people increasing multiple times over – without reduction in the size of ordinary citizens’ slice at the same time, which has also grown, although comparatively much less than that of wealthy people.

    You are not stupid – you can read a GDP growth chart, and imagine the impact on wealthy people, as well as the wider population (the impact on society would not be so different in America – even the poor would benefit from growth, just to a less extent than the wealthy did).

  191. Jack D says:
    @Johann Ricke

    I’m not so sure that the Chinese really want a lot of that territory, which they see as frozen wasteland and not part of historic China.

    Maybe, maybe if you gave Xi a pencil and told him to mark off whatever he wanted, he would take Mongolia and everything to the east of the Amur River but I’m not sure he would want much more than that, certainly not enough to start a war over even with a fragmented Russia.

    Now if you told Xi that Korea, Vietnam and Japan would all be Chinese tribute states again THAT would be something interesting to him.

    • Replies: @Johann Ricke
    , @Anonymous
  192. Dmitry says:
    @fredyetagain aka superhonky

    Putin is friends with all or almost all the oligarchs, since the situation and relations with government, is a little more centralized than in the US. The thing is calling it “oligarchs”, makes it sound more scary and implies all have political power. It’s just very wealthy people, mostly without political power – the same as in America – the same as in any country with wealth.

    The case in Russia – there’s around 100 dollar billionaires (mostly without political power). While in the United States, there’s over 600 of them. And in China – according to Wikipedia – over 800.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_the_number_of_billionaires

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  193. Dmitry says:
    @Jack D

    Not really.

    And Georgia has no need to conquer South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

    If I was Georgian I would see only benefits from not having these territories – not having them, increases the ethnic homogeneity inside Georgia, which now has a higher proportion of Georgians than ever (inside officially recognized Georgian territory, it is now 86,8% people of Georgian nationality).

    Priority for Georgia should be economic development and perhaps to reverse its falling population of Georgians who are emigrating, including mainly to Russia (incomes are still not high enough to stop Georgians emigrating to Russia, although perhaps that will change if Georgia continues growing economically).

    • Replies: @Hunsdon
  194. Hunsdon says:
    @Sam Haysom

    Only Boris and Natasha would not agree with Pure Bred Historic American Sam Haysom!

  195. @Dmitry

    Russia has way too many billionaires for the size of its economy. A fair amount of Russia’s wealth appears to be flowing into Bel-Air, California. I guess that provides bodyguard jobs for other Russians who shop at the Jon’s Market in North Hollywood, but it can’t be doing much for the average Russian back home.

  196. @Jack D

    I’m not so sure that the Chinese really want a lot of that territory, which they see as frozen wasteland and not part of historic China.

    Historic China came about through armed conquest. Today’s additions will be part of what in future will be deemed historic China, even if it’s lost through intervening setbacks. And that’s not unique to China. Al-Andalus aka Spain is part of the historic Dar al-Islam. But Muslims are always open to completely new additions. This isn’t unique to Islam either. It’s never been the case that the South China Sea was considered a Chinese territory. It was just a way to get to other lands across the sea. But in recent decades, China has asserted a territorial claim to the entire sea.

    The basic point being that your goals expand as other goals are met. It’s not an accident that Chinese emperors claimed to rule all under heaven.

    • Replies: @Hunsdon
  197. Hunsdon says:
    @Sam Haysom

    Why Sam, does this mean we’re not friends any more? You know, Sam, if I thought you weren’t my friend, I just don’t think I could bear it.

    Are we beholden to what Kennan thought? No, not necessarily . . . but we should consider his arguments. Maybe we should listen to Stephen Cohen, as well as Max Boot.

    You seem to continue conflating Russia with the Soviet Union. Does not the dissolution of the Soviet Union—in a remarkably peaceful way, despite some killings along the path—-does not the surrender of the Warsaw Pact nations, does not the withdrawal of Soviet Group of Forces in Germany make any impression on you? You talk of Russian expansionism? Can you think of a time when a major world power gave up it’s extensive holdings in such short order, in such In the end, sir, have you no shame?

    I like the way you question the patriotism of people who disagree with you. It’s the mark of a first class fellow, a real open minded man who’s willing to engage in debate. Nah, I’m just kidding.

    Say, do you think President Trump is also anti-American? Do you disagree with his statement that “Getting along with Russia is a good thing, not a bad thing?”

    Russia paid a price for surrendering its empire. Did Israel ever pay a price for the USS Liberty? (I really was going to confine this to Russia, but if you want to drag Israel into it, hey, I’m game to play.)

  198. Hunsdon says:
    @Dmitry

    I’ve gotten along with all the Georgians I’ve met, and quite enjoy Georgian culture, music and food. (God the food!) My slavophilia in now great way impedes my . . . what should I call it, caucasophilia? Gruzinskophilia? The fact that Mikheil (HEIL!) Saakashvili was trained and spun up by the US is, I think, at the root of his hostility towards Russia. I don’t know if Gruzia will ever be a strong independent state, but perhaps Finlandization is not the worst of all possible outcomes.

    (If Canada or Mexico were to consider joining a PRC-led military and economic union, I’m pretty sure Washington would have strong thoughts on the matter. “The strong do what they will, the weak endure what they must.”)

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @Steve Sailer
  199. @Steve Sailer

    I’m talking of course about the (((oligarchs))) who were robbing the place blind back in the 90s.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  200. vinteuil says:
    @Cagey Beast

    This maniac, Michael Morell, gets interviewed on NPR, gets published in the Washington Post, on a regular basis?

    • Replies: @Cagey Beast
  201. @Steve Sailer

    Offer them heroin. The one that pulls a cooking spoon out of the sole of her shoe is Lovato.

  202. @fredyetagain aka superhonky

    Russia doesn’t seem to be suffering an oligarch shortage in 2018. Nor judging by the megamansions being built overlooking the Bel-Air Country Club, are Russia’s current oligarchs keeping their loot at home.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  203. @vinteuil

    I haven’t seen all that much of him but there are quite a few clips of him at YouTube.

  204. @Dave Pinsen

    America’s (and Western Europe’s, to a lesser extent) retro obsession with Russia is what you’d want, if you were China. In light of the Feinstein revelations, to what extent is it due to Chinese influence?

    Great question, but the answer is hard to see. The Left hates Russia because they cannot incorporate the Rus into the one-world government now that they are not communists. Plus, Putin opposes the Left’s program for LGBT dominance. Putin embracing Christianity, and encouraging the Rus to have children, were just the worst insult to the loss of Russian Communism.

    Trump knows that constraining China requires good relations with Russia. Leftist still love China because Communism.

    Leftists are the enemy of the American people.

    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
  205. Hunsdon says:
    @Johann Ricke

    I remember reading, although where I do not recall, that the real problem with European nationalism was that every European nation thought that it’s proper historic boundaries were those which existed at that point in time during which that particular nation had been at its geostrategic apogee. I.e., not just Albania but Greater Albania; not just Serbia but Greater Serbia, not just the Israel of UN Resolution 181 but Greater Israel.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  206. Dmitry says:
    @Steve Sailer

    Rich people spend a lot of money around the world (expected behaviour is to send children to schools in either UK and Switzerland, usually for at least a couple of years, which is actually pretty good experience for most kids). But it doesn’t mean they are not also investing and spend at home.

    I can tell some anecdotes. I know a girl whose father lives in Moscow. And yet she buys thing with a Deutsche Bank card, so her parents’ money (or at least what they give) is in euros. At the same time they’re spending these euros in Russia as well (so it’s probably registered as export income when they buy things).

    Russia has way too many billionaires for the size of its economy.

    Not talking about billionaires – the amount of just well-off people is certainly a lot more than you will get from official statistics.

    Chanel store in Ekaterinburg is larger than the one in Rodeo drive of Beverly Hills. My impression last summer when I walked through Beverly Hills – “how come Chanel store is so much smaller than in Ekaterinburg?”

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  207. Dmitry says:
    @Hunsdon

    Yes Georgians usually seem very nice, and have some of the most beautiful brunettes and the best restaurants.

    I’ve never been to Georgia. But if you know any people who have lived there, they will tell you a very chaotic country – which is part of the attraction for tourists of course (it’s also extremely cheap).

  208. Dmitry says:
    @Dmitry

    Chanel store in Ekaterinburg is larger than the one in Rodeo drive of Beverly Hills. My impression last summer when I walked through Beverly Hills – “how come Chanel store is so much smaller than in Ekaterinburg?”

    Lol although I’m out of date – and the huge Chanel of my memories, is actually closed now after only 5 years. Well at least Dior is still occupying a huge building.

  209. @Hunsdon

    Greater Finland nationalists had their eye on big swatches of Russia extending to the Urals where there were native speakers of Finnish here and there.

  210. @Hunsdon

    NATO is now 100 miles from St. Petersburg via Estonia, closer than Tijuana is to Los Angeles. If Mexico had joined the Warsaw Pact, well …

  211. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @Charles Erwin Wilson II

    Why not invite Russia to join NATO? Most of the current criticisms of Russia can also be made of Turkey, which is a NATO member.

    If it were up to me, I’d add Russia and boot Turkey. Think of the benefits:

    1) Reducing the chance of nuclear war.

    2) Reducing the chance of conventional war in Europe.

    3) Help in containing Islam and China.

    4) An economic boon from dropping Russia sanctions, helping them develop their arctic energy reserves, and building infrastructure to transport it to foreign markets.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    , @Hunsdon
  212. Jack D says:
    @utu

    Bringing low range nukes to put Israel under a direct thread changed everything. Putin must demonstrate his credibility so he is believed that he will play the ultimate card if needed. In the meantime the US is hoping to stir enough resentment in inner circles of Russia’s establishment to promote a coup against Putin

    It must be nice to live on your own planet with your own facts that are completely different from everyone else’s. No one else thinks that Russia has nukes in Syria. Nor does it need to have them there – it has plenty of long range missiles that could reach Tel Aviv (that’s OK because Israel has long range missiles that could reach Moscow). But no one expects Putin to nuke Israel – he actually has a pretty good relationship with Israel (and a favorable view of Jews in general – he doesn’t seem to have the classic Russian disease of anti-Semitism (or alcoholism)). Everyone in Russia’s inner circle is beholden to Putin and not even the most deluded Americans think that they can promote a coup.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  213. Mr. Anon says:
    @Sam Haysom

    And yes Jack is exaggerating and smearing his enemies by claiming the alt right in general is full of pro-Russia ideologues. But this site definitely is and there is a small vocal minority who absolutely would love to see Russia prevail over the USA.

    Can you name someone who believes that? Can you name enough such people to justify the statement that this site is “full of pro-Russia ideologues”?

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  214. duncsbaby says:
    @Tiny Duck

    I guess I should’ve figured it out before, but I’m certain Tiny Duck is deliberate parody now. Thanks for the laughs, you maniacal genius.

  215. @Tiny Duck

    Hey you! Get off the Duck’s account!

    Seriously dude. You can’t fool us. T’Duck usually gives us spot on gold, but this wasn’t even dross.

  216. Dmitry says:
    @Jack D

    Your kind of condescending Russophobia comments in the forum, are not any better, than my friend Utu from Karlin’s blog, who thinks Jews or Israel are plotting against him from under his bed.

    1. Yes Putin has unusually strong love of Jews, which is something constant for all his career. (Even Western media has trouble trying to claim this fellow with moderate views, and support for tolerance between different nationalities, is the next Hitler.)

    But Russia is not the Soviet Union and not Ukraine. Most people (maybe something like 90% of the population) don’t give a shit about Jews – neither negative or positive. It’s not a common topic of interest, outside some obsessed people on the internet, or for use in jokes. Especially in our generation which grows up after the Soviet Union.

    Reality is it’s the safest country in Europe for Jews as Jews, while Jewish religious-cultural community has direct government support, not less than for other official religions. The same for many dozen other nationalities. Russia is tolerant – perhaps more than American, despite lower standards of living and more generalized anger in common people about all kinds of topics.

    2. Yes Israel ( I am an expert about Israel with my own eyes) and Russia have good relations since late 1990s, or early 2000s. There’s more racism against Russian in Israel, than there is racism against Israel in Russia. General views depend on a news cycle, but anger which exists in Russia about Israel is usually about it being an ally of America, not because of average people give a shit about Arabs or Jews.

    While in Israel, there are reports of Ukrainian nationalists running freely, waving UPA flags, and even beating up people they think are Russian.

    3. Alcoholism is not “typical” (if you mean majority), even if its rates are unfortunately elevated. Over 80% of the population are not engaging in heavy drinking or with any symptoms of alcohol dependence. Rates elevated, but not far above other Northern European nationalities. Talking all the time about this makes you seem like an idiot.

    4. Views about America have deteriorated strongly in the last decade, but this is (although fueled by federal media) reactive – chronologically in response to American negative actions, aggression and sanctions.

    Still from an American perspective, Putin is the most friendly option. Second place in the elections, are the Communist Party candidates.

    Trump himself wants to improve relations, so we can hope for optimism in this area, even if it will take a few years for him to do it.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  217. LondonBob says:
    @Dave Pinsen

    Russia would be an alternate power centre in NATO that is why it has not been invited, Scowcroft said this was debated and dismissed for this reason.

  218. @Mr. Anon

    We have some Russian commenters who are Russian patriots. I don’t see anything wrong with that, but Americans should keep it mind.

  219. Jack D says:
    @Dmitry

    My apologies for bringing up Russian alcoholism up so much. I kid, I kid.

    BUT, defending Russia by saying that 80% of the population is not alcoholic (i.e. 20% of the population IS) is sort of damning with faint praise. In most other countries this would be considered shocking. The US has its own problems with alcohol and also various drugs but Russia has a very serious and long running problem that is no laughing matter and which has seriously affected Russian lifespans. And it is even more shocking that people are so desperate and poor that they are drinking not just vodka but bath lotion, cologne, etc. and other products that contain toxic ingredients and dying from these.

  220. duncsbaby says:
    @sayless

    HAL certainly sounds Canadian.

  221. Yes, especially a Canadian of the Lester Pearson era. HAL sounds like he wears a bow tie, doesn’t touch a drop of alcohol and takes the King St. streetcar to his job on Bay Street as an accountant.

  222. Anonymous[408] • Disclaimer says:
    @sayless

    I heard something similar about Alec Guinness, who regarded his Star Wars work as a minor and unserious role, and hated that it became what he was primarily known for.

  223. Anonymous[408] • Disclaimer says:
    @LondonBob

    The Boer war was to the British what the war with Finland was to the Soviet Union. Both victories backfired on the victors, by displaying their military incompetence to the world – especially Germany. Because of the Boer war, the Germans before 1914 considered the British army a joke. Hitler made the same assessment of the Red Army after the Russian debacle in Finland.

  224. Anonymous[408] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    In defense of Russia, it has to be said that it has no natural borders to the west, or in any other direction. A country like that will only feel secure if surrounded on all sides by a big zone of neutral/friendly buffer states.

  225. Anonymous[408] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    If global warming is a real thing then this century’s great territorial prize will be Siberia.

  226. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @ic1000

    Thanks, ic1000.

    Re Russia-Georgia, maybe some Russian diplomat pulled an April Glaspie?

  227. @Sam Haysom

    Sam,

    What is your attitude towards the Brits, who burned out capitol to the ground and allied with murderous savages on the frontier to raid, burn and scalp our forebears as they carved a nation out of the wilderness?

    Sam, my fellow historic American, Native Americans, Brits and Germans all killed far more of our kin than Russians ever did.

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