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Putin Claims Strategic Parity, Respect
Vladimir Putin’s announcement of new weapons systems to achieve nuclear parity was the result of the erosion of arms control regimes, such as the ill-advised U.S. withdrawal from the ABM treaty in 2002,
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Russian President Vladimir Putin’s State-of-the-Nation speech Thursday represents a liminal event in the East-West strategic balance — and an ominous one.

That the strategic equation is precarious today comes through clearly in Putin’s words. The U.S. and Russia have walked backwards over the threshold of sanity first crossed in the right direction by their predecessors in 1972 with the signing of the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty.

Amid the “balance of terror” that reigned pre-1972, sensible statesmen on both sides concluded and implemented the ABM treaty which, in effect, guaranteed “mutual assured destruction” — the (altogether fitting) acronym was MAD — if either side attempted a nuclear attack on the other. MAD might not sound much better than “balance of terror,” but the ABM treaty introduced a significant degree of stability for 30 years.

The treaty itself was the result of painstaking negotiation with considerable understanding and good faith shown by both sides. The formidable task challenging us intelligence specialists was to be able to assure President Nixon that, if he decided to trust, we could monitor Soviet adherence and promptly report any violations. (Incidentally, the Soviets did cheat. In mid-1983 we detected a huge early warning radar installation at Krasnoyarsk in Siberia — a clear violation of the ABM treaty. President Reagan called them on it, and the Soviets eventually tore it down.)

During the U.S.-Soviet negotiations on the ABM treaty, a third of the CIA Soviet Foreign Policy Branch, which I led at the time, was involved in various supporting roles. I was in Moscow on May 26, 1972 for the treaty signing by President Richard Nixon and Soviet Communist Party General Secretary Leonid Brezhnev. I recall not being able to suppress an audible sigh of relief. MAD, I believed, would surely be preferable to the highly precarious strategic situation that preceded it. It was.

Cornerstone of Stability

In his speech on March 1, President Putin included an accurate tutorial on what happened after three decades, noting that Moscow was “categorically against” the U.S. decision in 2002 to withdraw from the ABM treaty. He described the treaty as “the cornerstone of the international security system.”

Putin explained that under the treaty, “the parties had the right to deploy ballistic missile defense systems in only one of its regions. Russia deployed these systems around Moscow, and the U.S. around its Grand Forks land-based ICBM base [in North Dakota].” (He did not mention the aborted attempt to deploy a second installation at Krasnoyarsk.)

The Russian President explained: “The ABM treaty not only created an atmosphere of trust, but also prevented either party from recklessly using nuclear weapons … because the limited number of ballistic missile defense systems made the potential aggressor vulnerable to a response strike.”

Putin was saying, in effect, that no matter how bad — even mad — the MAD concept may seem, it played a huge stabilizing role. He added that the U.S. rejected all Russian proposals toward constructive dialogue on the post-ABM treaty situation, and grossly underestimated Russia’s ability to respond. The Russian President then gave chapter and verse, cum video clips, on an array of new Russian weaponry which, he claimed, rendered missile defense systems “useless.” The show-and-tell segment of Putin’s speech has been widely reported.

New York Times Skeptical

David Sanger, the New York Times’ go-to guy on key issues, who is among the best in the trade on reporting as “flat facts” things like WMD in Iraq and “Russian meddling,” wrote the lede on Putin’s speech in Friday’s NY Times together with Neil MacFarquhar. The meme this time is not flat fact, but skepticism: “Do these weapons really exist? Or is Putin bluffing?”

In support of their skepticism, Sanger and MacFarquhar blithely report that “analysts writing on Facebook and elsewhere leaned toward the bluff theory.” So, QED!

And echoing former National Intelligence Director James Clapper’s insight that Russians are “typically, almost genetically driven to co-opt, penetrate, gain favor, whatever,” Sanger and MacFarquhar remind NYT readers that “deception lies at the heart of current Russian military doctrine.”

The two NYT journalists did get one thing right at the very end of their article; namely, “For years, Mr. Putin has chafed at the perceived disrespect showed to him and Russia by the United States. ‘Nobody listened to Russia,’ he said near the end of his speech, to huge applause. ‘Well, listen now.’”

Russians, like all proud and gifted people, resent attempts to demean or marginalize them. Putin may have seen his speech, in part, as a blistering response to former President Barack Obama’s dismissive comments that “Russia doesn’t make anything” and is no more than “a regional power.”

Door Still Open to Talks

It is to be hoped that the Marine generals running U.S. defense policy, rather than calling Putin’s bluff, will now encourage President Donald Trump to take up Putin’s latest offer to “sit down at the negotiating table” and “work together … to ensure global security” — taking into account that “strategic parity” is now a reality.

Referring to what he called “our duty to inform our partners” about Russia’s claimed ability to render ABM systems “useless,” Putin added: “When the time comes, foreign and defense ministry experts will have many opportunities to discuss all these matters with them, if of course our partners so desire.”

Putin also said, “We are greatly concerned by certain provisions of the revised Nuclear Posture Review,” which envisages a nuclear response to “conventional arms attacks and even to a cyber threat.”

He described Russia’s military doctrine, as “very clear and specific”: “Russia reserves the right to use nuclear weapons solely in response to a nuclear attack, or an attack with other weapons of mass destruction against the country or its allies, or an act of aggression against us with the use of conventional weapons that threatens the very existence of the state.”

With burgeoning threats against Iran and Syria, it is to be hoped that someone in Washington thinks to ask Putin which countries he includes among Russia’s allies.

White Lies Nobody Believes

Dana White, Pentagon spokeswoman, told reporters Thursday, “Our missile defense has never been about” Russia. Now, as Harry Truman would have put it, the Russians “weren’t born yesterday.” Putin has been extremely derisive toward those promoting the bromide that ABM installations in and around Europe are designed to defend against missiles from Iran — or North Korea.

In an unusually candid remark on missile defense on April 17, 2014, the day before Crimea was annexed, Putin told a national TV audience: “Missile defense … is no less, and probably even more important, than NATO’s eastward expansion. Incidentally, our decision on Crimea was partially prompted by this.” (Emphasis added)

To take some liberties with Shakespeare, “The fault is not in our stars, but in our Star Wars.” Ever since President Ronald Reagan was sold on the notion that a “Star Wars” ABM system could provide the U.S. with complete protection from missile attack, exceptional opportunities to restrain — or even put an end to — the nuclear arms race have been squandered. Victory has gone to the arms profiteers — those whom Pope Francis described to Congress as the “blood drenched arms merchants.”

The ABM project has been called, with justification, the world’s largest corporate welfare program. Jonathan Marshall today explains quite well what should scare us — still more billions likely to be thrown at the makers of systems that, most serious scientists and engineers agree, can always be defeated, and comparatively cheaply, way or another.

Three Decade-Old Conundrum

During the mid-80s, I had a front-row seat watching President Ronald Reagan blow what appeared to be a golden chance for a comprehensive peace. I had spent most of my CIA career focusing on Soviet foreign policy and was able to tell the senior U.S. officials I was briefing that Mikhail Gorbachev, in my view, was the real deal. Even so, I was hardly prepared for how far Gorbachev was willing to go toward disarmament. At the 1986 summit with President Ronald Reagan in Reykjavik, Iceland, Gorbachev proposed that all nuclear weapons be eliminated within ten years.

Reagan reportedly almost rose to the occasion, but was counseled to reject Gorbachev’s condition that any research on anti-ballistic missiles be confined to laboratories for that decade. “Star Wars,” the largest and most wasteful defense-industry program in recent memory, won the day.

I know the characters who, for whatever reason, danced to the tune of “Star Wars,” Reagan’s benighted, wistful wish for an airtight defense against strategic missiles.

The naysayers to peace included ideologues like CIA Director William Casey and Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger, windsocks like CIA Deputy Director Robert Gates and one of his proteges, Fritz Ermarth, a viscerally anti-Russian functionary and former Northrop Corporation employee, during Reykjavik.

According to author Jim Mann, several years after Reykjavik, Ermarth reflected on how he had been wrong in being overly suspicious of Gorbachev and how the intuition of Ronald Reagan and Secretary of State George Shultz had been more perceptive.

What Now?

By all appearances, President Putin is as interested in stemming the strategic arms race as was Gorbachev. On Thursday, Putin talked about this particular moment being liminal — he called it “a turning point for the entire world.” Will there be anyone in Washington at the other end of the phone, if Moscow calls? If, in effect, the military-industrial-congressional-intelligence-media complex answers, ABM developers will continue to fatten their purses and squander our children’s future.

It may be time to recall the admonition of President Dwight D. Eisenhower in a speech he gave 65 years ago:

Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. …

We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people. … This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron. […] Is there no other way the world may live?

‘Nuff said.

Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Savior in inner-city Washington. He served 30 years as an U.S. Army Intelligence and CIA analyst, and in retirement co-founded Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS).

(Republished from by permission of author or representative)
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  1. Even the mostly-diabolical CIA had some good people in it. We’re with you, Ray!

    • Agree: Dan Hayes
    • Replies: @Joe Wong
  2. WHAT says:

    Hey, I can read Consortium and watch Youtube right on UNZ now!

  3. Dan Hayes says:

    Mr. McGovern:

    I am very interested in the readiness stages of the weapon systems discussed by Putin.

    Of these:

    1). What system or systems are operationally ready?

    2). What system or systems are in some intermediate development stage?

    3). What system or systems are still only in the wishful-thinking development stage?

    I would very much appreciate your thoughts on this topic.

    • Replies: @WHAT
  4. Dan Hayes says:

    Mr. McGovern:

    As a follow-up on preceding Item #3:

    Has the intelligence community been asleep at the switch regarding the existence of these purported Russian weapon systems?

    If these weapons systems do exist and if the Americans have dropped the ball in uncovering them, could this be due to our failure to recognize Russian engineering and scientific capabilities?

  5. History teaches nothing.
    Von Braun was able to develop the V2 because Versailles made it impossible to develop modern artillery.
    Had a proximity fuse been developed, London would has had a blood bath comparable to what RAF and USAF did to German cities.
    Without this fuse the V2 exploded underground, causing relatively minor damage.

  6. Cyrano says:

    The ABM treaty was signed in 1972 by two superpowers, who were more or less equal – at least in the nuclear weapons domain.

    The reason why US tore up that agreement in 2002 is because they saw it as a concession not only to – at that point inferior power, but to inferior people as well. One has to recall who started the arms race in the first place, specifically the nuclear arms race. And it was US, simply because of the fact that they had developed the nuclear weapons first.

    Why did the arms race happen at all? The romanticized version, peddled by US is that it was about ideology, totalitarianism vs, freedom loving democracy. That’s the version for the kinder-garden age group.

    The nuclear arms race was about people who believed that they are superior to the Slavs and that this should be reflected in who has more and deadlier weapons too. They like to portray the competition as if it was about who is democratically superior. That’s total baloney. They believed that they are superior in a sense that the guy with a mustache believed that his nation of domination is superior to the Slavs too. And how did he ended up? Right.

    The ruling elites of the west today have surpassed the degeneracy of the guy with the funny mustache in many respects. In 2002 Bush official explanation as to why the ABM treaty is not needed was that he can’t deny to the US people any more the opportunity to defend them from Nuclear Armageddon. And it’s OK for the Russians to be left vulnerable to Nuclear Armageddon because of course they are not on the same level of evolutionary development.

    The simple truth is that by 2002 US believed that Russia is bankrupt and it can’t keep the technological pace in arms development. USSR was always behind technologically – as far as producing wide range of consumer goods – but they never let US get away technologically in the weapons development.

    By 2002 US believed that Russia can no longer keep pace with US even in the arms development. They believed that they can develop a functioning ABM system and that the Russian arsenal will be rendered useless and US will finally claim their rightful place as rulers of the world.

    When Bush told the world the touching story about how he “saw” Putin’s soul, he didn’t complete the sentence. What he was trying to say is that he “saw” Putin’s soul and that he believed that Putin is stupid. How else can you explain that they tried to justify placing anti-ballistic missiles in Europe to defend against Iran’s potential nuclear attack.

    The good thing is that it looks like the Americans were wrong – the Russians were not bankrupt to the point of not being able to keep pace technologically in developing new weapons. I guess it comes down to different philosophies about life.

    Americans believe that in order to survive you need to learn how to make money. The Russians, on the other hand, have been taught by their history that in order to survive you need to learn how to make deadly weapons to keep the people with superiority complexes away.

  7. I am sceptical simply because one has to look at that crowd. There is no adequate people there. Most probably do not get the message and significance of what has happened. Many think it is bluff or dick swinging contest. Thinking that man in Putin position may be bluffing… that’s the height of irresponsibility.

  8. @Dan Hayes

    It looks like you guys never learn. According to Hollywood and media Russians are only good to design bear bycicles and vodka bottles.

  9. WHAT says:
    @Dan Hayes

    Putin literally told everything, plaintext: Kinzhal is done and already deployed in the South Military District(think Black Sea and Med, and Pacific will probably be next), RS-28 is undergoing tests and hypersonic heads for it are in initial production.

    The craziest thing about all this is RS-28 was not even secret for a decade, testing of hypersonic heads for it was made public a year and a half ago, and what eventually became Kinzhal could have been predicted after India(hell, it wasn`t even Russia!) stated that they have reached hypersonic on Brahmos-2, and then news about 3M22 Zircon started surfacing.
    What actually surprises me is the lack of coherent damage control from the western media, considering they had ample time to work out the spin and write their pieces.

    • Agree: Dan Hayes
    • Replies: @annamaria
  10. The Scalpel says: • Website

    Mr.McGovern’s son is an Army officer. Mr. McGovern is CIA. Enough said

    • Disagree: RobinG, for-the-record
    • Replies: @RobinG
  11. @Dan Hayes

    In WWII the Manhattan project needed 30.000 men to develop atomic weapons.

    In WWII three German scientists were developing a hydrogen bomb primed by ordinary explosives.
    In the beginning of 1945 the bomb was nearly ready.
    At the Prague airfield two converted Heinkels, from memory, stood ready to destroy the Ural water works, this destruction would have stopped USSR tank production.
    The bomb was a sphere of about a metre in diameter.
    Rudel was was to fly the plane to drop the bomb, he mentions the bomb in his memoirs in 1956 as ‘atomic’.

    Test explosions that succeeded flattened an area of a few square kilometres, a Mussolini envoy witnessed a test that succeeded.
    Rainer Karlsch, ‘Hitlers Bom, Hoe Nazi-Duitsland nucleaire wapens testte in een wanhopige poging om de oorlog te winnen, Tielt, 2005 (Hitlers Bombe, München)

    WWII was won by USA industrial capacity and Russian blood.
    Technically the Germans were more advanced than the USA, they already had operational jet planes, and tv guided bombs, the latter hardly ever used.
    Just the magnetron for radar they never understood from crashed planes.
    What Germany missed was inndustrial capacity, and raw materials.

    Lack of rare metals was the reason Germany could not develop powerful piston engines for planes.
    WWII German helicopters were better than the models now in use.
    Steve Coates, ‘Deutsche Hubschrauber 1930 – 1945, Stuttgart 2004 ( Helicopters of the Third Reich, 2002, Hersham, Surrey)

    Population size has little to do with ingenuity.

    Is it possible that Russian and Chinese education is so much better that in the USA, that they now have the better weapons, of which Churchill said ‘the higher civilisation has the better weapons’ ?

  12. @Sergey Krieger

    It looks like you guys never learn. According to Hollywood and media Russians are only good to design bear bycicles and vodka bottles.

    Not true, Kalashnikovs too. LOL.

    • Replies: @Sergey Krieger
  13. annamaria says:

    “And echoing former National Intelligence Director James Clapper’s insight that Russians are “typically, almost genetically driven to co-opt, penetrate, gain favor, whatever,” Sanger and MacFarquhar remind NYT readers that “deception lies at the heart of current Russian military doctrine.””
    –1. Who would think that Clapper is a specialist in genetics on a global level? Did not he expose himself as a liar? Guess this is just a genetic trait in Clappers’ family…
    –2. Do Sanger and MacFarquhar have any relevant expertise? — No. Have they consulted the CIA and Mossad before offering their psychoanalytical drivel on the CIA-“supported” NYT? — Of course! This is their bloodline.

    Meanwhile, the mankind needs the joint efforts to find ways for survival on our planet:

    • Replies: @RobinG
  14. God bless Putin and Russia for protecting Christians in Russia and Syria and stopping the Zionist supported regime change in Syria. Putin and Russia are the modern John the Baptist , a voice of reason crying in a Zionist world of terror and deceit.

  15. Nice ending: We, homosapiens, should be much further into space right now, when doing fairtrade among all and no wars.

    A child can tell.

    • Replies: @Sergey Krieger
  16. @Andrei Martyanov

    Do not complicate things Andrei, lol

  17. @Max Havelaar

    Agree. Thank uncle Sam for this.

  18. Russians had tests with Topol missiles which failed.
    All these missiles announced is asking the question. Were these missiles tested?
    I doubt it. If they would be tested, US would detect the testing of those missiles.
    Nothing can go into mass production unless it is thoroughly tested.
    On the other hand Russians never bluff. So I do not believe that Putin is bluffing.
    But here is what US should be worrying about,
    These underwater drones with nuclear payload. That could turn out as a weapon that cannot be countered by US. This weapon will use the strategic vulnerability of US borders.
    While Russia does not have this kind of vulnerability.

    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
    , @WHAT
  19. @Sergey Krieger

    I would have thought Матрешки и сама водка. The bottles aren’t so good.

  20. On Sputnik website is an article that Pence declared that US position did not change.
    He claims that NK must denuclerize before US is willing to negotiate.
    From this there are two conclusions. Either Sputnik is lying, or Pence is out of his mind.

    • Replies: @Twodees Partain
  21. Flavius says:

    Good piece of work, Ray.
    Reagan, Gorbachev and John Paul II deserve the respect of history for having grasped as well as they did the opportunity thrown up to them by time.
    Alas, in America, slippage in the Oval Office set in with Bush I. What followed him in comparison was a slate of pygmies: Clinton, a bona fide grifter with no relationship with honor or truth; Bush II who had no place in his upper story for the world as it is, and it showed; Obama who had the same problem as Bush but complicated by a delusional self image that floated ever higher on the adulation of sycophants as his years in office went by. This is where the buck was stopping when it came to formulating America’s foreign policy, for all except in the case of Obama. With Obama the Lite, the tarnishing buck stopped anywhere but with Obama, and he was blithly shameless enough to acknowledge it.
    The Congress’s practical understanding of Russia and its place in Europe, Asia, and the world is a joke.
    The MSM’s practical understanding of Russia belongs in a comic book.
    It seems that the higher one goes in the Government Bureaucracies that are responsible for formulating the security policies of our country, the greater the liklihood of encountering abject stupidity or invincible ignorance – and to boot, unapologetic and even proud ignorance. For pity’s sake, Nikki Haley??? Are the gods playing with us???
    Is it any wonder that we have returned to the precipice of Cold War and most of America is being whistled past the graveyard by the likes of James Clapper. Would someone please give this moron a fishing rod and a can of worms and tell him to get lost.

    • Replies: @augusto
  22. @Ilyana_Rozumova

    Already a few years ago something fell from great height into the E Mediteranean.
    Rumour was that Russia had intercepted a USA missile from Spain to Syria.
    USA and Israel explained an excercise was the cause.
    Then there is the story that an unarmed Russian plane flew close to one of the newest USA navy vessels, disabling all systems until the plane disappeared over the horizon.
    A Russian manufacturer claims to have developed such a system.
    It is asserted that nearly thirty USA navy personnel resigned when the vessel reached a Black Sea harbour

    • Replies: @Twodees Partain
  23. windwaves says:

    yes, fantastic piece RMC.

    Sadly the ignorance dominating our entire political system (from the WH to Congress …) will ensure that nothing good will come out of Putin’s appeal.

  24. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Magical weapons that can destroy all life. Oh think of the children. Lockheed and Bechtel’s magical weapons are when they steal money from the poor to counter another imaginary threat. Check out the Iraq war vets begging on the street in a town near you if they haven’t killed themselves yet.

    Massive profits lie in extorting tax money and building worthless weapons systems. The military exists as a Ponzi scheme. The taxpayers pay through the nose for the worthless Department of Defense and the even more worthless Homeland Security for the large houses, private schools, politicians and media of the rich.

    The American zombie will eventually choose to get rid of the super expensive and worthless military when it becomes impossible to get three square and the cops are shooting more of them in the street with military weapons. When has the military won even one war? Name one war they won recently? Grenada? They have defeated large swaths of the USA so I suppose we should count that as a victory for the US Military.

  25. WHAT says:

    But Topol is not new at all. I think you meant Bulava, which had its share of failures.
    Still, 75% success rate in testing, if Wikipedia is to be believed.

  26. L.K says:

    Great article by Ray McGovern!

  27. bjondo says:

    This Russian technology comes from Gaza rocket science.

    Now I understand why Yid so fearful and mouths open in terror at mention of Gaza rockets in-coming.

  28. TT says:

    After knowing all the problems, what’s dear Americans going to do?

    All Americans, esp those sane ex-CIA or Army intelligents, should team up & find ways to drain the swarms, by any means, protest, civil disobedient, color revolution, whatever without violent. Don’t wait for a catastrophe war to wake up, friends. The change has to come from within, not outside. God don’t save America, you do. Good luck.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    , @NoseytheDuke
  29. Sean says:

    Nerve gas assassination hijinks. on a Russian and his daughter in England on Sunday Last January, two of Russia’s top cybersecurity officials were arrested and accused of aiding the CIA, in a case some have linked to US election hacking claims. The British, too, have been active in Russia, most memorably revealed by the “spy rock” scandal, in which a fake rock was used to pass messages back to British intelligence.

    While there are fewer ideological reasons than during the Soviet period for Russian spies to become traitors, western agencies can provide financial incentives. Russian prosecutors suggested, during Skripal’s court case, that he was recruited with cash – according to Russian media. Many agents, working in structures in which their superiors are demonstratively corrupt, might be tempted into colluding with friendly foreigners offering cash for secrets.

    As such, the demonstrative killing of a traitor could be a warning to junior officers not to follow the same path. Russian officials have often made it clear that traitors will meet a sticky end one way or another. Public threats were made against the officer in the SVR foreign intelligence service who betrayed the Russian sleeper agents swapped for Skripal and others, back in 2010.

    • Replies: @bluedog
    , @AnonFromTN
  30. RobinG says:
    @The Scalpel

    No, that is not enough said. The statement proves doctors can be morons.

    • Replies: @The Scalpel
  31. Sean says:

    The US nuclear forces modernization program has been portrayed to the public as an effort to ensure the reliability and safety of warheads in the US nuclear arsenal, rather than to enhance their military capabilities. In reality, however, that program has implemented revolutionary new technologies that will vastly increase the targeting capability of the US ballistic missile arsenal. This increase in capability is astonishing—boosting the overall killing power of existing US ballistic missile forces by a factor of roughly three—and it creates exactly what one would expect to see, if a nuclear-armed state were planning to have the capacity to fight and win a nuclear war by disarming enemies with a surprise first strike.

    Because of improvements in the killing power of US submarine-launched ballistic missiles, those submarines now patrol with more than three times the number of warheads needed to destroy the entire fleet of Russian land-based missiles in their silos. US submarine-based missiles can carry multiple warheads, so hundreds of others, now in storage, could be added to the submarine-based missile force, making it all the more lethal.

    It is interesting what Putin said about the ABM system. However, no ABM or other arms treaty can alter the fact that Russia is falling ever further behind in technology and wealth, and as they become less worthy of respect, they will have to demand fear.

    • Replies: @WHAT
  32. RobinG says:

    Before tipping point, how about climate-induced genocide. Go to 16 minute mark for account of military simulation –

    Col. Larry Wilkerson speaks at 2017 VFP convention pt.2

  33. Is it wise to have the USA disarm its nuclear force merely because Russia agrees to do so, when there is no such agreement from a country with a vastly larger population (9x), vastly larger and faster-growing economy, larger army, and vastly larger manpower reserves compared to Russia: CHINA.

    If it ever made sense to reduce our nukes without China doing the same, it doesn’t make sense anymore.

  34. Is it wise to have the USA disarm its nuclear force merely because Russia agrees to do so, when there is no such agreement from a country with a vastly larger population (9x), vastly larger and faster-growing economy, larger army, and vastly larger manpower reserves compared to Russia: CHINA.

    You opened a very special can of worms here. Of course it is not wise to do anything without considering China. But Russia’s position on the whole issue of nuclear weapons is simple–to preserve, for now, MAD, a thing which the United States consistently tries to undermine. But there was a notable shift in overall Russian position in the last couple of months–Russia indeed has no faith left in the combined West. This is already having and will increasingly have a very debilitating effect on the West, which has no geopolitical “currency” left to pay (to “buy”) Russia. It was still possible even couple-three years ago, not anymore. The only sensible negotiations with the combined West today could be about the framework and, eventually, structure of new international security. Even Macron gets it. The rest–look around, the US today has no functioning state (government), it is absolutely not treaty-worthy party (nedogovorosposobny), economy is following too.

    • Replies: @Y.L.
    , @Miro23
  35. bluedog says:

    Oh my now your posting not only your own propaganda but England’s too some things never change…

  36. Y.L. says:
    @Andrei Martyanov

    Prof. Stephen Cohen in his latest states the obvious that the fake news and analysts won’t discuss. He wants dialog. And I fear the Neocons will continue to dig in their heels, attack, deny and use asymmetric methods to attack Russia. How do we American patriots get these scumbags out of power?

    Some of Cohen’s points:

    § In the speech, Putin does not comment directly on past or current nuclear arms races, but he makes clear that another, more dangerous one looms, depending on how Washington reacts to Moscow’s new weapons. Washington can accept the parity, or deterrent, Russia has restored and return to full-scale nuclear arms negotiations; or it can try again to surpass Moscow’s parity. If the latter, he says, Russia is fully able and ready to compete, again and again, though he makes clear he would prefer instead to commit his remaining years of leadership, legacy, and national resources to Russia’s modernization and prosperity, which he spells out (yet again) in the first two-thirds of his speech. He insists, that is, the new weapons are not for any kind of aggression but solely for Russia’s legitimate military defense and, politically, to bring Washington back to détente-like policies and particularly to nuclear arms negotiations. The Kremlin, he adds, is “ready.”

    § Even having made a compelling and obviously proud presentation of what Russia has unexpectedly achieved, does Putin really believe Washington will “listen now”? He may still have some “illusions,” but we should have none. In recent years, there has been ample evidence that US policymakers and, equally important, mainstream media commentators do not bother to read what Putin says, or at least not more than snatches from click-bait wire-service reports. Still worse, Putin and “Putin’s Russia” have been so demonized that it is hard to imagine any leading American political figures or editorial commentators responding positively to what is plainly his hope for a new beginning in US-Russian relations. If nothing else, strategic parity always also meant political parity—recognizing that Soviet Russia, like the United States, had legitimate national interests abroad. The years of American vilifying Putin and Russia are essentially an assertion that neither has any such legitimacy. And making matters worse, there are the still unproven allegations of “Russiagate” collusion. Even if President Trump understands, or is made to understand, the new—possibly historic—overture represented by Putin’s speech, would the “Kremlin puppet” allegations made daily against him permit him to seize this opportunity? Indeed, do the promoters of “Russiagate” care?

  37. @jilles dykstra

    WWII was won by USA industrial capacity and Russian blood.

    Define “winning.”

    The main beneficiaries were the profiteers; they succeeded by guile, and they were mostly Wall Streeters.

    A true handful gathered more wealth and power to themselves, but in reality the account for humanity and the world was a net loss.

    If a person must persist in thinking in terms of “winning” and “losing” wars, here’s your list of “winners.”for WW2:

    Looking at the broad array of facts presented in the three volumes of the Wall Street series, we find persistent recurrence of the same names: Owen Young, Gerard Swope, Hjalmar Schacht, Bernard Baruch, etc.; the same international banks: J.P. Morgan, Guaranty Trust, Chase Bank; and the same location in New York: usually 120 Broadway. This group of international bankers backed the Bolshevik Revolution and subsequently profited from the establishment of a Soviet Russia. This group backed Roosevelt and profited from New Deal socialism. This group also backed Hitler and certainly profited from German armament in the 1930s.

    Pathetic, isn’t it? Who won?

    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
  38. AnonFromTN [AKA "Anon"] says:

    Anon from TN
    The US foreign policy was always driven by two horses: AIPAC and weapons manufacturers. Naturally, the US withdrew from the ABM treaty, as it threatened to curb the profits of weapons manufacturers. Now we are back where we started: the US foreign policy is driven by the same two horses, AIPAC and weapons manufacturers. Both horses are happy. End of story.

  39. AnonFromTN [AKA "Anon"] says:

    Anon from TN
    Litvinenko redux? Again, no proof that can be presented in the court of law, but lots of hot air. Remember Abe Lincoln: “You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.”

  40. AnonFromTN [AKA "Anon"] says:

    Anon from TN
    Yea, some people could benefit by heeding Protestant wisdom: “God helps those who help themselves”.

  41. Joe Wong says:
    @Fidelios Automata

    It seems a lot, if not all, former employees of those evil security agencies like CIA, FBI, NSA, etc. professed they loved peace and they have worked very hard to prevent the evil and detrimental courses taken by their former employers after their retirements.

    Perhaps this phenomenon has something to do with the western culture, i.e. your sin will be forgiven and you can go to heaven if you confess like paying for indulgence during the inquisition, but while they were there they were one of the enthusiastic members in a big family.

  42. Miro23 says:
    @Andrei Martyanov

    But there was a notable shift in overall Russian position in the last couple of months–Russia indeed has no faith left in the combined West.

    This is understandable, and presumably, “no faith left” means putting an almost automatic negative spin on anything coming out of the West with regard to Russia. Safer ground for them since it removes doubts and uncertainties and aids faster decision making (i.e. the war has already started).

    • Agree: bluedog
  43. “God helps those who help themselves”.

    Apparently she* helps those most who help themselves to our wallets.

    *I’m convinced gawd must be a female; who else could screw things up so thoroughly?

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
  44. The Scalpel says: • Website

    Please elaborate. Both of my assertions are undeniably true. One must ask oneself why a CIA officer who had become a dissident would not oppose one’s son joining the armed forces (there is no evidence at all in any of Mr. McGovern’s writing that he has any issue with his son being an armed forces officer). Alternatively, why would a CIA officer with a son who is an armed forces officer be posting dissident articles on the internet.

    These are fair questions for someone with an open, skeptical mind. I did not answer those questions, I simply let them stand. This approach informs, but does not bias the open minded, inquisitive reader. Your statement, on the other hand, is reactionary and pejorative.

    • Replies: @AndrewR
    , @Anonymous
  45. Anonymous [AKA "R. G."] says:

    Will Europe be used as a ”football field” against Russia?

    France rules out UK bid to include banks in EU trade deal

    By Jess Shankleman

    U.K. Chancellor Philip Hammond is heading for a showdown with his French counterpart over whether financial services can be part of a free-trade deal with the European Union after Brexit.

    Hammond told lawmakers on Monday that a fair and appealing agreement would have to include services, and is expected to make the same argument in a keynote speech on Brexit on Wednesday. It’s in nobody’s interest to break up London’s financial services sector, which “simply can’t be relocated or replicated,” Hammond told Parliament’s Brexit scrutiny committee.

    UK agrees ‘immediate’ post-Brexit talks with US, leaving EU high and dry

    ”May was keen to secure an early commitment to the UK-US “special relationship” from Trump, who has alarmed America’s allies with his criticism of NATO and the EU.”:

    US, NATO and EU – a joint war coalition
    by Willy Wimmer, State Secretary in the German Federal Ministry of Defense retd.

    NATO continues to prepare deployment area in Eastern Europe
    Peacebuilding measures are becoming ever more urgent

    • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
    , @Miro23
    , @TT
  46. AnonFromTN [AKA "Anon"] says:
    @jacques sheete

    Anon from TN
    Remember the last message of God to his creation from Douglas Adams’ Hitchhikers guide: “we apologize for the inconvenience”

  47. WHAT says:

    Funny, considering that Russia has just leapfrogged US technologically.

    • Replies: @Twodees Partain
  48. KenH says:

    It looks like Putin is walking softly and carrying a big stick. It seem our chattering classes have been largely silent regarding Russia’s display of advanced delivery platforms for nuclear weapons. There’s been no tweetstorm from the Trumpster. Apparently Putin’s revelations took us by surprise and we don’t know how to respond.

    I hope Putin has a hypersonic nuclear cruise missiles destined for Israel since they’re the source of our anti-Russia foreign policy and hostility.

    • Agree: AndrewR
    • Replies: @Twodees Partain
  49. @jilles dykstra

    “Just the magnetron for radar they never understood from crashed planes.”

    “Japan shares it’s cavity magnetron with German in 1940?”

    Apparently, the Japanese had their own working version of a cavity magnetron.

    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
  50. Common Core math will make us technologically superior again.

    • LOL: Twodees Partain
  51. According to this Discovery Channel documentary, the USA was working on nuclear powered cruise missiles over 50 years ago; at around 41 minutes listen as a letter concerning USSR test pilots is read concerning the Russian nuclear powered plane.

  52. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Americans have learned to love evil and hate good. Which war began when the ABM treaty was ditched and still hasn’t ended? If you said Afghanistan you’d be half right – the real war is for profit. Billions were handed over for fake defense systems, made up security systems and fake media plus plenty of laws based on fakeness to terrorize Americans. Most of the US can be thought of as an easily controlled mass of fearful children. The same kids who needed to be protected from the fake terrorists after 9/11 because of the horrible things they saw on TV and the internet.

    Death and all of it’s hardware – that’s how the country has always run. This is something every CIA agent knows in his loving heart. War criminal Ike knew it. Dulles had a lot of love. The US so loved the best Nazis they hired them to help make the bestest weapons.

    Crucially, Ike and the CIA created their own fake opposition – every empire needs a massive undertaking in this regard to make sure citizens are never a threat to the empire itself. All the slaves know Ike’s great warning especially internet slaves. Most think he was a real peace loving war criminal who oozed great patriotism. A great man who told his beloved citizens to look out for something. Like, say, 9/11.

    Some of the smarter slaves realized that Ike was doing what the CIA has done now for 71 years – creating fake resistance to disable the slaves from ever actually resisting anything. ‘Nuff said.

  53. @Ilyana_Rozumova

    Ilyana, it’s common knowledge that Pence is retarded.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
  54. Anonymous [AKA "B. N."] says:

    Help needed:

    CBC is in constant Russia bashing mode and people say their posts are deleted or submerged by disinformation posts from strange (faked?) profiles.

    Canadians say it has been like this since Gates and friends came in Canada to destroy Libya in 2011, and when they tried to post for Syria, the CBC “vomited” its war propaganda non-stop against Russia and Assad, and again used faked profiles on FB (among others) to try to manufacture consent and demonize these countries.

    ”Putin was ‘good’ and Obama was ‘bad’: Former Russian trolls reveal online work to create ‘fake news’

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  55. @jilles dykstra

    “It is asserted that nearly thirty USA navy personnel resigned when the vessel reached a Black Sea harbour”

    I might believe that 30 USN personnel got drunk, but only officers can resign. The resignation of that many officers would indicate that the ship was a carrier. With “brass creep” being the norm where the USN has more admirals than ships that tale could be possible, but it doesn’t sound like the truth.

    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
  56. AndrewR says:
    @The Scalpel

    Your “enough said” was hardly the mark of a simple Socratic zetetic.

    • Replies: @The Scalpel
  57. @WHAT

    Don’t mind Sean. He’s in the habit of making ridiculously delusional statements and trying to pass them off as common knowledge. He reminds me of Reagan, who went around talking as though Star Wars missile defense systems were a reality rather than a proposal.

  58. @KenH

    “I hope Putin has a hypersonic nuclear cruise missiles destined for Israel since they’re the source of our anti-Russia foreign policy and hostility.”

    Let’s hope that Trump’s 3D chess strategy includes getting Russia on board for a joint US/Russia invasion of Israel with regime change as the goal. Trump genuflects to Israel while scheming a joint invasion. Warm, fuzzy thinking, I know.

  59. @Anonymous

    Russia has unequivocally reserved its right to use nuclear weapons if its territory is militarily violated.

    This statement is incorrect.
    US is trying to develop small yield nuclear weapon for use on battlefield. Putin declared that use of nuclear weapon of any kind will be reciprocated by full nuclear response.

    About build up motorized units and hardware in border states of Russia Putin worries but not so much.

  60. Miro23 says:

    US, NATO and EU – a joint war coalition
    by Willy Wimmer, State Secretary in the German Federal Ministry of Defense retd.

    NATO continues to prepare deployment area in Eastern Europe
    Peacebuilding measures are becoming ever more urgent

    That’s a good link and there’s a lot more there about recent US – EU military, economic and media activity aimed at Russia. For example:

    Stereotypes formed by the media

    Since 2014, media experts have been observing that in mainstream European media, anti-Russian reflexes and stereotypes are systematically being re-established (see Hofbauer, Hannes, Feindbild Russland, ‘Enemy Stereotype Russia’ 2016, ISBN 978-3-85371-401-0). For historians, this is generally considered a typical preparation for war. The transatlantic re-enactment of American guidelines by the European mainstream media that has thus come into play, has meanwhile been more than sufficiently documented and described (Krüger, Uwe, Meinungsmacht ‘Power of Opinions’ 2014, ISBN 978-3-869621241 or

    Europe as possible battlefield

    Since the Barnett strategy paper from the US Pentagon has been discussed even in public, possible strategic considerations behind many conflict areas are becoming easier to understand. Obviously it is no longer about “winning” wars in the traditional sense, but about plunging entire regions into chaos (Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, etc.), so as to eliminate or control them (Barnett, Thomas P.M.: The Pentagon’s New Map. War and Peace in the Twenty-first Century; Putnam Publishing Group 2004).

  61. CanSpeccy says: • Website

    CBC is in constant Russia bashing mode


    That’s nothing compared with CBC bashing of Donald Trump — and our idiot Prime Minister expects to get a good trade deal from the US. The only good news, is that our Fancy Dressing, terrorist loving, multi-culti, feminist, pro-diversity, Canada-is-not-a-nation, we-prefer-immigrants-to-the-native-born Trudeau Liberals are on the skids according to opinion surveys and should be gone within a couple of years.

  62. @TT

    If the business of America is business then it could all be brought to a halt with a general strike. NO WAR OR NO WORK! would be the message and to hold Trump to his election agenda. The only drawback is that the American masses would need to participate in a manner that would require sacrifices and I doubt that that’s even in their vocabulary.

  63. TT says:

    London’s financial services sector, which “simply can’t be relocated or replicated,” Hammond told Parliament’s Brexit scrutiny committee.

    I would think Paris or Frankfurt make a better choice than London or Brexit. If any of two cities commit to build a new financial center in partnership with US Warstreet & Shanghai, all London financial services have to either move there or perish.

    UK agrees ‘immediate’ post-Brexit talks with US, leaving EU high and dry

    ”May was keen to secure an early commitment to the UK-US “special relationship” from Trump, who has alarmed America’s allies with his criticism of NATO and the EU.”:

    May is still dreaming of ex-colonial imperialism era under US. EU can easily leave UK out by duplicating whatever UK has shortly, while UK will collapse without EU market access. Its a one sided negotiation. Someone is pulling a leash on EU negotiators.

    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
  64. @Twodees Partain

    I stated ‘it is asserted’.
    IF, the USA is far behind in military technology, IF, the USA certainly would not acknowledge it.
    However, the way the USA behaves since Trump might point in the direction.

    About the anti Russia coalition USA, NATO, EU, Trump’s import taxes certainly does not strenghte this coalition.
    The elections in EU member states show more and more that inhabitants of EU member states have had enough of EU.
    Each election brings about that a stable government can no longer be formed.

    Belief in the Netherlands that Russia caused MH17 is deminishing, despite that the Ukrainian secret service now named the guilty Russian officers.
    What interest Russia would have had in murdering a few hundred passengers, motive, is never discussed.

    What is discussed these days is the EU effort to control the media.
    Interesting times, that is clear.
    In my now long life I never experienced such a mess, it maybe was there all the time, but then unnoticed by me in fact until I could no longer fool myself about Sept 11.
    It took three years.

  65. @jacques sheete

    That the USA as country won, no doubt about it.
    About USA firms financing Hitler, never saw any proof.
    Schacht resurrected the German economy by clever Keynesian measures.
    He created temporary money.
    That this was the plan you already can read in
    Otto Wagener, ‘Hitler aus nächster Nähe, Aufzeichnungen eines Vertrauten 1929-1932, Hrsg. Henry A. Turner’, 1987, Kiel, ISBN 3-88741-129-3
    Take care of the period, 1929 1932.
    Hitler was flabbergasted, making money ?

  66. @Joe Stalin

    IF indeed Japanese gave Germany the technology for magnetron radar, baffling.
    German ground radar worked well enough.
    However, the long wave radar on night fighters was a big disadvantage.
    The cumbersome antennae reduced the speed of the fighters to little more than the cruising speed of the RAF bombers.
    The only possibility I can think of is that Germans could not believe that little yellow man were so advanced in science.
    But this is no more than a hypothesis.

  67. @TT

    Both Germany and France cannot have their export to GB terminated.
    GB import from what remains of the EU after Brexit is far less than the export of the EU after Brexit to GB.
    As a British politician said ‘they need us more than we need them’.
    After Brexit GB is free to negotiate with any country on earth.
    Now that Trump begins, as he promised, with protetion, the EU is even more vulnerable.
    The Brussels clique can say whatever they want, in the end Merkel and Macron decide.

    • Replies: @TT
    , @Eagle Eye
  68. The Scalpel says: • Website

    Fair enough, I can see how it would be interpreted that way. As I explained, it was intended to be taken at face value. Sorry for the confusion – seriously. FWIW, I see nothing wrong with this article, per se. That does not mean, however, that there is not more going on than meets the eye. A good under cover agent would need to be believable. Only then could he gain the trust of those he intends to compromise under the proper circumstances. That is simply good spycraft. Do you honestly believe that the CIA would not work in that fashion?

    Interestingly, I checked, and the internet seems to be scrubbed of any references to Mr. McGovern and his family. In the past, that information was not difficult to find. Perhaps Mr. McGovern has made serious efforts to protect his family’s privacy. Perhaps there are other reasons. One must be careful when swimming with sharks.

    • Replies: @AndrewR
  69. annamaria says:

    “What actually surprises me is the lack of coherent damage control from the western media, considering they had ample time to work out the spin and write their pieces.”
    — This is a result of incompetence at the “senior level” of deciders and of a proliferation of incompetent opportunists along the lower levels of the ladder. As for MSM “bosses,” they are just obedient servants to the deciders and they publish only what they are told to publish.
    Look at the “senior level” of the FBI and DOJ — they are busy with performing a farce. The ploy is retarded and the performing skills are average at best. They are good for nothing. The recent sudden act of the thuggish Brennan — his bad mouthing of POTUS — reflects on the complete disarray among the “seniors.” The system shows signs of dementia…

    • Agree: Andrei Martyanov
  70. annamaria says:

    Well, the Jews United lashed out against Russian film/documentary about Trotsky and they cry — surprise! — “anti-Semitic production”
    Wikipedia article about Trotsky carefully avoids any mentioning of the US bankers’ financing Trotsky’s endeavors — as well as their financing the major anti-Russia activities at the beginning of the 20th century:
    Note the name of Jacob Schiff among the main financiers — the ancestor of the “inventive” Adam Schiff

  71. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @The Scalpel

    When has Ray McGovern ever written a dissident article? Never. Real dissidence is illegal.

    • Replies: @The Scalpel
  72. TT says:
    @jilles dykstra

    Looking at EU insane immigration policy & borderless control, UK is wise to exit before the terrorists strike or overrun by ME migrants. Brexit price may be high, but taking back sovereignty & safety certainly out value it.

    Juz puzzle what Londoner is up to, they protested on Trumps visit to jeopardize their own bargain power with US FTA during Brexit, but have no qualms about Saudi Arabia MBS visit. That’s fishy, some one is manipulating.

    Also Merkel & Macron aren’t so stupid to let in so many refugees to destroy their own country safety & losing votes to angry people. You know anything?

  73. AnonFromTN [AKA "Anon"] says:
    @Twodees Partain

    Anon from TN
    This might be true, but it’s totally irrelevant. As we see in MSM, people with various levels of intelligence behave as incurable retards when those who pay them give an order. He who pays the musicians calls the tune. The main problem is that MSM are wholly owned by the same “elite” that runs deep state.

  74. AndrewR says:
    @The Scalpel

    Please explain what, specifically, he or the deep state would have to gain from him pretending to oppose the deep state.

    • Replies: @The Scalpel
  75. The Scalpel says: • Website

    Specifically? Well I can’t claim to know all the possibilities. One obvious role would be that of informant. Clearly, he is very trusted by many in the anti-war community and others who disagree with US government policies. He knows who many of these people are, what their goals are, who their contacts are, etc. It is possible that he has some knowledge of their sources of funding, their means of recruiting and promotion, etc.

    Let me be clear, Mr. McGovern might be totally on the up and up. I don’t have any specific information that indicates otherwise. I do know that the intelligence services i.e. “deep state” would very much like to have someone like him, and in his position, as an informant. If they don’t have such a person, I am sure they are working on it.

    There are other possible roles, of course. Someone in his position could plant compromising evidence against other dissident leaders, etc.

    My overall goal, I guess is to point out that it is prudent and practical to be somewhat wary of “former” CIA agents and their agendas. The deep state has long tentacles.

    • Replies: @The Scalpel
  76. The Scalpel says: • Website
    @The Scalpel

    FWIW, Andrew Bacevich is another writer who falls into this category. Former military officer who started writing from a dissident perspective. His dissenting views did not cause him to discourage his son from becoming a military officer. His son later was killed on duty and Mr. Bacevich claims it had a big impact on his thinking, yet still he works for the armed forces and lectures at West Point…..

    • Replies: @AndrewR
  77. RobinG says:
    @The Scalpel

    Doubling down on your nescience?

    Your pretense of objectivity (“Let me be clear, Mr. McGovern might be totally on the up and up.”) is belied by your repeated, if passive-aggressive, backhanded attacks. If you aspire to write like C.J. Hopkins, you might start by checking your vocabulary. A dictionary is useful.

    protest against official policy; dissent.

    the expression or holding of opinions at variance with those previously, commonly, or officially held.

  78. Eagle Eye says:
    @jilles dykstra

    GB import from what remains of the EU after Brexit is far less than the export of the EU after Brexit to GB.

    This can’t be quite right. Aren’t GB imports from the continental EU by definition the same as continental EU exports to GB?

  79. The Scalpel says: • Website

    I call them like I see them. Thanks for the pedantic grammar lesson – very impressive. I am not impressed by your ad hominem attacks. That type of response indicates you have no real argument with me, but you just don’t like what I say. In a sense, I’m flattered.

  80. peterAUS says:


    “our duty to inform our partners” about Russia’s claimed ability to render ABM systems “useless,”

    “Russia reserves the right to use nuclear weapons solely in response to a nuclear attack, or an attack with other weapons of mass destruction against the country or its allies, or an act of aggression against us with the use of conventional weapons that threatens the very existence of the state.”

    What’s new?

    And what’s so exciting here?

    My impression is that both superpowers have had the same attitude and ability since, at least, mid 70s?

    I’ve read the article and most of comments, and the impression is:
    Should the regime in Moscow feels threatened by another superpower it will launch?
    How is that different from the 70s…..even 60s ?
    What did Putin say that’s new?

    Let me guess why fanboys here are happy:

    “Team USA” here believes that USA can destroy Russia xxx times over by nuclear weapons no matter what countermeasures Russia does? Hoooray!

    “Team Russia” here believes that Russia can destroy USA xxx times over by nuclear weapons no matter what countermeasures USA does? Hoooray!


    For my part I believe that both powers can and will destroy all life on Earth if/when start nuking each other. From the first nuke to end of life as we know around 3 months tops.

    • Replies: @ploni almoni
  81. @peterAUS

    A donkey would not move. Someone hit the donkey over the head with a club. Why they asked? To get the donkey’s attention.

    • Replies: @peterAUS
  82. peterAUS says:
    @ploni almoni

    An interesting analogy.

    Not so sure i looks and feels exactly that way, though.

    More likely, watching from aside, it looks as an old man is trying to reason with somebody else’s donkey.
    Dementia does that sometimes.

    The crowd watching all that is also interesting. Most are cheering up the old man (go figure) and some are laughing at donkey.

    Bizarre, but funny too.

  83. Erebus says:

    What is particularly dangerous at this stage is that US elites may conclude that these weapons aren’t yet ready for prime time, and that therefore there’s an open window of opportunity for escalation which must be taken before it closes.

    What astonishes me about Putin’s announcement is that he must surely have been aware of this risk. That leads one to think that the Kremlin has concluded that the West intends to attack, and that this is a penultimate attempt to set them back before the devastating consequences become inevitable.
    The next, probably ultimate attempt will come after Russia is placed in a position where it is forced to retaliate against an egregious provocation. I agree that the provocation will take place in either Ukraine or Syria, or both simultaneously.

    Having laid it on the table in Syria in Oct 2015, Russia will have to respond along the lines of what Andrei Martyanov suggested in his 800lb Gorilla article. Namely, in such a way as to place the US homeland in harm’s way at the next, post retaliation escalation stage. If the US elites still can’t let go of the Global Hegemony nut and remove their hand from the monkey jar, and continue to believe they can prevail and save the Empire, we’re into uncharted territory where there be more monsters than we can count.

  84. annamaria says:

    “If the US elites still can’t let go of the Global Hegemony nut and remove their hand from the monkey jar, and continue to believe they can prevail and save the Empire, we’re into uncharted territory where there be more monsters than we can count.”
    –The gravest danger is the spectacular incompetence and ignorance of the psychopathic deciders. They are “elites” in terms of power-holding only; otherwise, the US “elites” are the common scum. — No dignity. No intelligence.
    “Can you hear me now?”
    “Based upon the reaction to Putin’s speech so far, the answer appears to be “no.” This refusal to accept the fact that there exists today a new reality carries with it the potential for catastrophic miscalculation. … It doesn’t take a stretch of imagination today to paint a scenario in which American and Russian forces clash over Syria. Indeed, a recent incident—in which Syrian militia forces, supported by Russian private military contractors, advanced toward Syrian oil and gas fields occupied by U.S.-backed Kurdish fighters, only to be attacked by American fighter bombers, resulting in hundreds of casualties, including scores of Russian dead—underscores the fact that such clashes are no longer theoretical. …
    Syria is not the only geographical point of friction between the United States and Russia. Both the Baltic States and Ukraine find American and Russian forces facing off against one another. American ships and reconnaissance aircraft probing the waters and airspace off the Baltic coast and in the Black Sea have been aggressively challenged by Russian aircraft, oftentimes flying dangerously close to their American counterparts, prompting then-Secretary of State John Kerry to declare that the U.S. Navy would be justified in shooting down the Russians in “self-defense.” …
    The almost cavalier ease with which the idea of Russian-American combat is floated as a possibility by American decision-makers is born out of a misplaced notion of American military superiority which, while reflecting an accurate estimate of the situation 10 years ago, is no longer the case today.”

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov
  85. @Erebus

    I was thinking same thing too. Just like German attack on ussr in 1941 which came before Soviet union could have been ready 1-2 years.

  86. Miro23 says:

    What astonishes me about Putin’s announcement is that he must surely have been aware of this risk. That leads one to think that the Kremlin has concluded that the West intends to attack, and that this is a penultimate attempt to set them back before the devastating consequences become inevitable.

    The next, probably ultimate attempt will come after Russia is placed in a position where it is forced to retaliate against an egregious provocation. I agree that the provocation will take place in either Ukraine or Syria, or both simultaneously.

    I agree with all this, but would add the MSM propaganda buildup against Russia that mirrors closely the intense anti-Iraq propaganda prior to 9/11. In other words the US public is being set up to interpret an “Event” correctly.

    Where I would differ, is that conflict in Syria or Ukraine would not be enough. It would need to be some large scale False Flag on American soil, with an impact like 9/11, and which would be pinned immediately on Russia and coupled with a pre-prepared First Strike.

    The Russians won’t want to waste time with a “penultimate attempt” to persuade anybody of anything, they should just get on with it. Like Harold Smith said elsewhere;

    The U.S. government is also deploying a “missile defense” system in Europe, the so-called “European Phased Adaptive Approach”, whose only apparent purpose is to facilitate a nuclear first strike against Russia. And depending on the software installed, the missile launchers used in this system can also launch nuclear armed (offensive) cruise missiles. This is a very destabilizing and dangerous move that takes us back to the worst days of the cold war. With global tensions being what they are and missiles close to Russia’s borders, Trump is forcing Russia into a “launch on warning” posture and a nuclear war could happen even by “accident”.

    This gratuitous U.S. “government” madness puts us all at far greater risk of death from a nuclear war than from the bullet of an AR-15. To put it another way, what the U.S. government is doing in the world today would be like somebody strapping their kids in their car and then driving around town shooting at cops.

    I’m sorry, but neither you nor the U.S. “government” have any moral standing whatsoever to decide what constitutes a “safe society” and to impose it on anyone.

    And maybe not coincidentally, this particular missile “defense” system is in the last stages of installation.

  87. @annamaria

    Based upon the reaction to Putin’s speech so far, the answer appears to be “no.”

    Actually, it is the other way around.

    As one of the most important characters in Russian/Soviet Literature, Ostap Bender, used to say: “The ice began to move.” (c)

    The most revealing is the reaction of Pentagon and NATO, some of it is down right funny.

  88. peterAUS says:


    The provocation in Syria will go, most likely, along the lines so far: careful killing of Russians on the ground there.
    A plane here, a team there, with sprinkling of limited raids on Russian facilities there. Add a high ranking officer here and there too. As so far.
    The provocation in Ukraine will go, most likely, along a heavy bombardment of Novorossya and short incursions there. And then longer incursions.

    In neither case it would warrant a serous confrontation between superpowers.

    The problem is, of course, that military logic has its own peculiar flow so, those “incidents” above could escalate into something serious.

    But, my impression is that in shorter run, save same error/mistake, the world will be fine.

    People in Syria and Novorossya are another matter.
    And probably somewhere else too.

    • Replies: @annamaria
  89. augusto says: • Website

    I do realize that Ray was a little more assertive and less subject to ‘merikanisms’ and ‘merikan pathos’ at the time of Vietnam.
    Time and once being a sole superpowers pays a price.

  90. AndrewR says:
    @The Scalpel

    You make good points. Thank you.

  91. annamaria says:

    “The provocation in Syria will go, most likely, along with the lines so far: the careful killing of Russians on the ground there. A plane here, a team there, with a sprinkling of limited raids on Russian facilities there. Add a high ranking officer here and there too. As so far. The provocation in Ukraine will go, most likely, along with a heavy bombardment of Novorossiya and short incursions there. And then longer incursions.”
    — Sure. This is why the US (ZUSA) was informed of the new weaponry. Now they (the chosen and the exceptional) are playing at their own risk.

  92. annamaria says:

    The incompetent have exposed themselves again: “Poisioned British-Russian Double-Agent Has Links To Clinton Campaign”
    1. “… Salisbury, where the incident took place, is just 8 miles away from Porton Down, a chemical weapon test site run by the British government. … chemical agents such as VX and mustard gas are still manufactured on site …
    2. Skripal moved to Salisbury in 2010 in a spy swap and became close to a security consultant employed by Christopher Steele, who compiled the Trump dossier. The British security consultant, according to a LinkedIn social network account that was removed from the internet in the past few days, is also based in Salisbury… Meduza named the man the Telegraph declines to identify as Pablo Miller, who at the time was posing as Antonio Alvarez de Hidalgo and working in Britain’s embassy in Tallinn. Russia’s Federal Security Service says Miller was actually an undercover MI6 agent tasked with recruiting Russians.
    Orbis is Christopher Steele’s company which was paid by the Clinton campaign to make up or find ‘dirt’ about Trump. Sergei Skripal was an agent Steele himself was likely involved with… For three years, in the nineties, he spied in Moscow under diplomatic cover. Between 2006 and 2009, he ran the service’s Russia desk, at its headquarters, in London. … Steele was an MI6 undercover agent in Moscow around the time when Skripal was recruited and handed over Russian secrets to the MI6. It is very likely that they personally knew each other. Pablo Miller, who worked for Steele’s private company, lived in the same town as Skripal and they seems to have been friends since Miller had recruited him. Miller or someone else attempted to cover up the connection to Steele by editing his LinkedIn entry.”

  93. So far from MSM is coming deafening “sound of silence”.

  94. Anonymous [AKA "Paracletus"] says:

    Huge respect for Ray on so many counts. His voice of sanity will surely be one of the key factors for our species’ continued survival past our present existential quandary. I beg to differ, however, on his take on “Star Wars.” I too was privy to some of the back-room discussions leading to Reagan’s March 23, 1983 announcement of the Strategic Defense Initiative. In its original form the idea was to leverage some of the directed-energy and particle beam research that was yielding promising results in the inertial fusion program, championed by world-class physicists such as Drs. Edward Teller and Winston Bostick from the plasma physics community. There was a Machiavellian side to co-opting defense priorities to secure much-needed funding for an advanced science civilian program, to serve as a “science driver” for new approach to economic development, but this approach (later sabotaged by AF Maj. Gen. Danny “Crackers” Graham into the anodine bowdlerization mocked by the media and perpetual war advocates as “Star Wars”) would have met both needs on a constructive basis for US-USSR cooperation not only on common defense issues but in partnership for Third World development, which was one of the primary concerns of SDI’s intellectual authors. The topic deserves more than the short shrift Ray gives it here, but I can share an also short comment I have contributed to a couple of other alternative media sites, below:

    On US Hysteria Over Putin’s Unveiling of New Russian Weapons

    For all the fun that the neocons and MSM made of Reagan’s “Star Wars” program, the Strategic Defense Initiative contained in it all the elements to make the US nuke-proof, while ramping up the STEM base of our productive economy via fundamental breakthroughs in physics, or “new physical principles,” as the Russians call them. They are, after all, inventors of the Tokamak, still the most promising engineering approach to achieving steady-state nuclear fusion. The original SDI, as proposed by Drs. Edward Teller and Winston Bostick et al. and adopted by the Reagan administration in 1983, was based on very promising directed-energy research from the inertial fusion program, since then woefully underfunded.

    Along comes Maj. Gen. Danny Graham and dumbs down the idea to crackpot pipe dreams like “Brilliant Pebbles” and “High Frontier,” which amount to little more than throwing rocks at incoming ICBMs. Those rocks would have to be hypersonic and maneuverable if we are to believe Putin’s description of new Russian systems, which I am inclined to because of Russia’s long-standing commitment, even in Soviet times, to fundamental science, not consumer electronics or war-profiteering boondoggles like the F-35. American blindness to the near-limitless potential of devices based on “new physical principles” can be seen in the fact that Wikipedia, for example, describes Graham as the “architect” of the SDI, when in fact he co-opted the advanced-science approach for the benefit of international finance, which must prevent a new fusion era from challenging their speculative oil economy. Much of the funding for anti-nuclear, global warming and other “environmental” causes obeys similar reasons.

    So it seems to me that the cat Putin is letting out of the bag (aside from boosting his upcoming electoral chances with an increasingly nationalistic Russian population) signals that Russia has succeeded in catching up to the advanced science platform for defense and economic development that the US once sponsored and held out as an opportunity for cooperation with the USSR to end the Cold War and put MAD—mutually assured destruction—behind us once and for all, and has since backed down and reversed even further once the Soviet Union fell apart. Instead of partnering with an emerging non-communist potential economic mega-bloc, Western financial speculators saw those events as an opportunity to loot the former Soviet economy to the bone, aided and abetted by the corrupt “oligarchs” (not really that, in the broader historical sense) of the CPSU.

    That’s over now, and we’ve come full circle with the opportunity to apply “new physical principles” to making nuclear war obsolete—as we could have 35 years ago. In a way Putin’s national address does announce a new arms race, but in the context of the first two thirds of that address also means an entirely new framework for economic development on an unprecedented scale, which was the deeper meaning of Reagan’s SDI anyway—aborted, of course, by the Bush/CIA cold coup within that administration. I, for one, don’t mind the idea of a new “arms race,” especially since the US has been unilaterally pursuing just that for years in Eastern Europe and asymmetrically as well with its ongoing destabilization of the Middle East, which is ultimately against Russia anyway, as in Mackinder’s geopolitical mandate to contain the “Eurasian Heartland” and Brzezinski’s “Arc of Crisis” all along the underbelly of the USSR, for which Osama bin Laden was imported from Wahhabi Saudi Arabia.

    More than a slap in the face the news from Russia should be seen as a bucket of cold water to wake up Western (especially US) brainwashed masses and perhaps even leadership to the reality of a long-overdue overhaul of our strategic posture. Nuclear-propelled angels of death will be looming perpetually aloft to remind us.

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