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The Liberal Idiocy on Russia/Ukraine
American pundits are often most interested in scoring points against their partisan rivals.
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Among honest and knowledgeable people, there really isn’t much doubt about what happened in Ukraine last winter. There was a U.S.-backed coup which ousted a constitutionally elected president and replaced him with a regime more in line with U.S. interests. Even some smart people who agree with the policy of going on the offensive against Russia recognize this reality.

For instance, George Friedman, the founder of the global intelligence firm Stratfor, was quoted in an interview with the Russian liberal business publication Kommersant as saying what happened on Feb. 22 in Kiev – the overthrow of President Viktor Yanukovych – “really was the most blatant coup in history.”

New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman.

Brushing aside the righteous indignation and self-serving propaganda, Stratfor’s Friedman recognized that both Russia and the United States were operating in what they perceived to be their own interests. “The bottom line is that the strategic interests of the United States are to prevent Russia from becoming a hegemon,” he said. “And the strategic interests of Russia are not to allow the U.S. close to its borders.”

Another relative voice of reason, at least on this topic, has been former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger who – in an interview with Der Spiegel – dismissed Official Washington’s conventional wisdom that Russian President Vladimir Putin provoked the crisis and then annexed Crimea as part of some diabolical scheme to reclaim territory lost when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991.

“The annexation of Crimea was not a move toward global conquest,” the 91-year-old Kissinger said. “It was not Hitler moving into Czechoslovakia” – as former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had suggested.

Kissinger noted that Putin had no intention of instigating a crisis in Ukraine: “Putin spent tens of billions of dollars on the Winter Olympics in Sochi. The theme of the Olympics was that Russia is a progressive state tied to the West through its culture and, therefore, it presumably wants to be part of it. So it doesn’t make any sense that a week after the close of the Olympics, Putin would take Crimea and start a war over Ukraine.”

Instead Kissinger argued that the West – with its strategy of pulling Ukraine into the orbit of the European Union – was responsible for the crisis by failing to understand Russian sensitivity over Ukraine and making the grave mistake of quickly pushing the confrontation beyond dialogue.

While the comments by Henry Kissinger and Stratfor’s Friedman reflect the reality of what demonstrably happened in Ukraine, an entirely different “reality” exists in Official Washington. (Note that both interviews were carried in foreign, not U.S. publications.) In the United States, across the ideological spectrum, the only permitted viewpoint is that a crazed Putin launched a war of aggression against his neighbors and must be stopped.

Facts, such as the declaration in September 2013 from a leading neocon, National Endowment for Democracy President Carl Gershman, that Ukraine was “the biggest prize” and an important step toward ousting Putin in Russia, do not fit into this story frame. [See’s “A Shadow U.S. Foreign Policy.”]

Nor do the comments of neocon Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland, who was caught in a pre-coup phone call, handpicking Ukraine’s future leaders and discussing how to “glue this thing.” Nor her public statements about the United States investing $5 billion in Ukraine’s “European aspirations.”

White Hats, Black Hats

Instead of dealing with what actually happened in Ukraine, U.S. pundits and politicians – from conservative to liberal – have bought into a fantasy version of events in which the coup-makers all wore white hats and the elected president and his eastern Ukrainian supporters – along with Putin – all wore black hats.

But there are, as always, rhetorical differences across the U.S. partisan liberal-conservative divide. On Ukraine, the American Right urges an escalation of military tensions against Russia while chiding President Barack Obama for weakness (when compared with Putin’s toughness) – and liberals cheer on Obama’s supposed success in driving the Russian economy into a painful recession while accusing the Right of having a man-crush on Putin.

This liberal “theme” of jabbing the Right for its alleged love of Putin takes the Right’s comments about his forcefulness out of context, simply to score a political point. But the Right-loves-Putin charge has become all the rage with the likes of Paul Krugman, Thomas L. Friedman and other liberals who are bubbling with joy over the economic suffering being inflicted on the people of Russia and presumably eastern Ukraine.

Krugman, who is quickly jettisoning his reputation for thoughtfulness, published a second column on this topic in a row, showing that he has fully bought into all the propaganda “themes” emanating from the U.S. State Department and the compliant U.S. mainstream news media.

In Krugman’s mind, it was Putin who instigated the crisis with the goal of plundering Ukraine. Operating from that false hypothesis, Krugman then spins off this question: “why did Mr. Putin do something so stupid? … The answer … is obvious if you think about Mr. Putin’s background. Remember, he’s an ex-K.G.B. man — which is to say, he spent his formative years as a professional thug. Violence and threats of violence, supplemented with bribery and corruption, are what he knows.

“And for years he had no incentive to learn anything else: High oil prices made Russia rich, and like everyone who presides over a bubble, he surely convinced himself that he was responsible for his own success. At a guess, he didn’t realize until a few days ago that he has no idea how to function in the 21st century.”

But Krugman is not only operating from a false hypothesis – the reality was that the Ukraine crisis was forced on Putin, not that he went seeking it – Krugman also has a simplistic view of the KGB, which, like the American CIA, certainly had its share of thugs but also had a significant number of smart analysts. Some of those KGB analysts were in the forefront of recognizing the need for the Soviet Union to reform its economy and to reach out to the West.

Putin was generally allied with the KGB faction which favored “convergence” with the West, a Russian attitude that dates back to Peter the Great, seeking Russia’s acceptance as part of Europe rather than being shunned by Europe as part of Asia.

Putin himself pined for the day when Russia would be accepted as a part of the First World with G-8 status and other big-power accoutrements. I’m told he took great pride in his success helping President Obama in 2013 resolve crises with Syria over the mysterious sarin-gas attack and with Iran over its nuclear program.

As Kissinger noted, Putin’s hunger for Western acceptance was the reason he obsessed so much over the Sochi Olympics – and even neglected the festering political crisis in neighboring Ukraine.

In other words, Paul Krugman doesn’t know what he’s talking about regarding Ukraine. His stab at offering a geopolitical analysis suffers from what an economist should recognize as “garbage in, garbage out.” [See also’s “Krugman Joins the Anti-Putin Pack.”]

A Spreading Idiocy

Still, this liberal mindlessness appears to be catching. On Sunday, the New York Times’ star columnist Thomas L. Friedman weighed in with his own upside-down analysis, smirking about the economic suffering now being felt by average Russians because of the U.S.-led sanctions and the Saudi-spurred collapse of oil prices.

Friedman wrote: “In March, the House Intelligence Committee chairman, Mike Rogers, was asked on ‘Fox News Sunday’ how he thought President Obama was handling relations with Russia versus how President Vladimir Putin had been handling relations with the United States. Rogers responded: ‘Well, I think Putin is playing chess, and I think we’re playing marbles. And I don’t think it’s even close.’

“Hmmm. Marbles. That’s an interesting metaphor. Actually, it turns out that Obama was the one playing chess and Putin was the one playing marbles, and it wouldn’t be wrong to say today that Putin’s lost most of his — in both senses of the word.”

Ha-ha-ha. Putin has lost his marbles! So clever! Perhaps it also wouldn’t be wrong to say that Tom Friedman has lost any credibility that he ever had by getting pretty much every international crises wrong, most notably the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003 when he was just as smarmy in paving the way for that bloody catastrophe.

Washington Post liberal columnist E.J. Dionne Jr. also joined in the “group think” on Monday,writing “even … some of [Obama’s] older bets were paying off. The Russian economy is reeling from sanctions imposed in response to its invasion of Ukraine (and from low oil prices). An approach seen by its critics as not tough enough is beginning to show its teeth.”

Beyond the propagandistic quality of these columns – refusing to recognize the complex reality of what actually happened in Ukraine, including the overwhelming referendum by the voters of Crimea to secede from Ukraine and rejoin Russia – there is this disturbingly smug pleasure at how the U.S. actions are hurting the people of Russia.

Whatever you think of Putin, a key reason why he has remained so popular is that he brought some stability to the Russian economy after the “shock therapy” days of plunder under Boris Yeltsin when many Russians were pushed to the brink of starvation. Putin pushed back against some of the corrupt oligarchs who had amassed vast power under Yeltsin (while also striking alliances with others).

But the cumulative effect of a more stable Russian economy was that a fragile middle class was taking shape in a country that has notoriously failed to generate one over the centuries. Because of the U.S.-backed coup in Ukraine, which essentially forced Putin’s response and then led to Obama’s sanctions, the Russian middle class is losing its modest savings as the ruble’s value collapses.

In other words, the part of Russia’s population that could best propel Russia toward a more democratic and progressive future is being dismantled, in part, by punitive U.S. policies – while liberals Krugman, Friedman and Dionne celebrate.

Insider Rivalries

What really seems to matter to these pundits is getting a shot in at their conservative rivals, not the fate of average Russians. This attitude reminded me of an earlier phase of these mindless liberal-conservative food fights – in 1990 when conservative Robert Novak looked for ways to resolve Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait by accepting Saddam Hussein’s private offers to withdraw rather than resorting to war.

Yet, when Novak appeared on CNN’s “Capital Gang,” Al Hunt, a centrist who played the role of liberal pundit on the show, ridiculed the old “Prince of Darkness” for his uncharacteristic peaceful bent. Hunt hung the nickname “Neville Novak” around Novak’s neck, comparing him to British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain who sought to appease Adolf Hitler before World War II.

When I later asked Hunt why he had derided Novak for looking at more peaceful solutions to an international crisis, Hunt defended the “Neville Novak” line by noting all the times that Novak had baited opponents for their softness against communism. “After years of battling Novak from the left, to have gotten to his right, I enjoyed that,” Hunt said.

Yet, the human consequences from the failure to resolve the Kuwait crisis peacefully have been almost incalculable. Beyond the hundreds of U.S. and coalition deaths and the tens of thousands of Iraqi soldiers and civilians killed, the Persian Gulf War set the stage for a decade of harsh economic sanctions against Iraq and marked a turning point for Saudi Osama bin Laden to begin targeting the United States.

Arguably, if Novak had been listened to – if Hussein’s peace feelers had been taken seriously – history might have taken a very different and less violent course. However, among Washington’s insiders, it seems that nothing is more important than their sparring with each other, in television and in print.

Now, these liberal columnists are enjoying bashing conservatives over their supposed love of Putin and their tolerance for Putin’s “invasion” of Ukraine. Not only are the likes of Paul Krugman, Thomas L. Friedman and E.J. Dionne Jr. spreading dangerous propaganda, they are setting the stage for a new Cold War and possibly even a nuclear confrontation.

(Republished from ConsortiumNews by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: American Media, Russia, Ukraine 
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  1. rod1963 says:

    I think it’s much more than mere sparring among some egotistical wordsmiths. The mainstream liberal and republican pundits are mostly mouthpieces for the political class. In short what they write or talk about are highly circumscribed and they don’t go out of bounds unless they want to end up fired or have their careers dead ended.

    Novack was certainly being a outlier with his opposition to the Gulf War, but then again the fix was in before he opened his mouth among the political class. The Kuwaiti oligarchs, Bush and Congress pukes pulled out all the stops to demonize Hussain and gin up support for war including that infamous and totally made up story about Iraqi soldiers bayonneting Kuwaiti babies in their incubators(which was created by PR firm Hill & Knowlton with money from the Kuwaiti ambassador). Gone was all the reporting how Hussain was our man in Iraq and all the business dealings he with us. Or how Ambassador Glaspie gave him the greenlight to invade Kuwait.

    Then look at the massive PR effort to the lead up of the second invasion. This dwarfed all the tub thumping of the pundits. Our press became defacto Bush administration stenographers with Judith Miller leading the charge. It was 7×24 demonizing of Saddam and his uber deadly WMD factories churning out everything but sharks with laser cannons built into their heads. Then came the army generals crowing about we’ll be out in 90 days, blah blah.

    It doesn’t matter who is the White House, the press ends up in cahoots with him. They were in on it with H.W. Bush on Iraq war 1.0; Clinton on Serbia, NAFTA; with Bush 2.0 on Iraq, Afghanistan; Obama on Gaddafi, Syria, funding Al-Nusra, Putin/Ukraine.

    FWIW the mainstream pundits serve the same role as a vaudeville comedian – I remember when Jon Stewart was on Crossfire and called it the political version of WWF wrestling – nothing a but a dumb show for the masses. You just have two millionaire clowns shouting at each other for 5 minutes with nothing really being said or anyone really learning anything new. This goes for just about any political show on TV. Print media is a bit better but they really don’t like to allow dissenting voices that go against the political class in D.C. or upset the oligarchs that own the papers.

  2. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    What a terrific piece! Thank you for providing a voice of sanity.

    • Replies: @MRW
  3. Quercus says:

    Thomas Friedman has been spouting nonsense for quite a long time now. He first came to my attention with his “green is the new red , white, and blue” schtick stupidly blathering on about what he believed the government should do to promote “greener” energy use alternatives. He offered some outrageous suggestions.

    Krugman, Friedman, Dionne, all have a public forum to give their opinions, but opinions are like assholes — every body has one.

    • Replies: @KA
  4. On most topics, including this one, idiocy is bipartisan.

  5. David says:

    I used to think believing in broad conspiracies to exploit the republic was nuts. But having listened to NPR denigrate Russia systematically, in every context, for years, maintaining throughout the exact same snide lines as Dick Cheney, Susan Powers, Nuland, Clinton, Kerry and the rest of the pretend rivals, I can no longer believe that there isn’t a central authority directing the narrative.

    NPR this week gave Masha Gessen an hour to rail on Russia, claiming everyone is Terrified of Putin without mentioning that she is a prominent Jewish Lesbian who has her own reasons for hating Putin. She impuned the freedom of the Russian press — Putin’s popularity is the result his control of the media — while telling lies about Russia from Russia, where she lives most of the time. She must be terrified.

    I believe NPR is the most effective propaganda in America because its primary audience is liberal, educated wasps and jews who think they oppose imperialism. NPR looks at disasters they laid the way for and discuss them with a distanced equanimity that somehow makes it easy to forget every fact and prediction they’ve stated up to now has been wrong. By constantly softening up this population with lying gibberish, they gut any kind of internal opposition to endless war.

  6. Chiron says:

    People said it before, mainstream pundits, both left and right, are there to be the mouthpiece of the political class.

  7. TomB says:

    It really is remarkable this Russia business: Beforehand, that is, it was hard to imagine anything being more stupid than the neocons’ desire to immerse us in the cauldron of the Mideast, not to mention doing so in such a boots-on-the-ground fashion.

    And now, despite the obvious, incalculable interest of the U.S. and the West to see Russia eventually join the West and essentially eliminate the possibility of some major European conflict (in which history tells us we can’t stay out of), the neocons have essentially topped themselves in trying to turn Russia into some long-term if not permanent hostile power.

    Not that Russia’s taking of the Crimea in the manner it did wasn’t and isn’t problematic, but what on earth can be going through the minds of those who seem to want to force Russia into becoming a militant enemy, already armed with nukes and ICBM’s, surrounded by vulnerable allies of ours who we have already pledged to protect, and with Russia having the ability to ally with *the* rising power on the globe China. Which is likewise already nuked up.

    It’s really breathtaking. The frivolousness of these people is just beyond comprehension. Cosmic even. It’s almost as if they are *hungering* for us to get into some horrible, potentially fatal war.

    • Replies: @Realist
    , @Carroll Price
  8. PeterB says:

    Most of this is usually framed as Russia versus “the West”. However, the “West” in this case is really just the US + Britain. No one else in Europe, including the Germans, seem very enthusiastic about pushing forward with this Ukrainian adventure, apart from some individual loudmouths. Mostly they are just being pressured by the US to go along. The US isn’t even located in Europe but is a continent away yet meddles in Europe as though it were a colonizer.

  9. Realist says:

    “Not that Russia’s taking of the Crimea in the manner it did wasn’t and isn’t problematic, …”
    Where did you get this info….MSM?

    • Replies: @D505
  10. War for Blair Mountain [AKA "Bill Blizzard and his Men"] says:

    Will the Human Species go extinct on the Kenyan Foriegner’s shift or the fat-ankled hairy bulldykes’s shift?

    1962=2014……it was a Democrat back in 1962 who came within 60 seconds of causing The Extinction of The Human Species…..

  11. Biff says:

    NPR = Fox news for the left

    • Replies: @richard vajs
  12. Ken Smith says: • Website

    Thomas Friedman Clogged My Toilet

    This is a humor piece my son Justin wrote five years ago. It was widely linked and re-posted at the time, but it is still current. No direct connection, but Justin is now a frequent contributor to the Times.

    “Thomas Friedman Clogged My Toilet” at

  13. War for Blair Mountain [AKA "Bill Blizzard and his Men"] says:

    I have 0 doubt that Victoria Nuland ….Susan Rice….and Irish Skank Samantha Powers gave the direct order to shoot down flight MH-17……

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    , @Eileen Kuch
  14. unit472 says:

    First of all, Kissinger is in his 90’s now. Well past his prime and a relic from another era… sort of like Vladimir Putin. However one feels about Yanukovych, the fact is the man fled to Russia after his own people turned against him. Hardly an inspirational story of a courageous and honest man fighting to preserve his nation against neo Nazis. More the story of a corrupt man getting out while the getting was good and as has been well documented since then, the leader of a kleptocracy that had looted the nation. Putin had a temper tantrum over his Winter Games being ruined by the fall of the man he had relied upon to keep Ukraine in Russia’s ‘sphere of influence’ and lashed out at the new government in Ukraine.

    It was Putin’s reckless and bellicose response to those events that opened up the world’s eye’s to just what sort of man Putin was. Most particularly Angela Merkel’s who had been tilting towards Russia and away from the US up until Putin put his cards and mental issues on the table. Merkel, who has spoken to Putin more often than any other world leader and can do so without translators, came to believe that Putin is unstable, dishonest and without a firm grip on reality. She is the one now holding the EU sanctions policy in place not the US.

    • Replies: @Jeff Davis
    , @Anonymous
  15. @David

    Whenever one mentions Masha Gessen, one must also include this clip of her speaking in which she boldly and proudly states that lying is necessary in order to achieve stated goals.

    Gessen has zero influence in Russia, and the massive amount of media exposure she gets in the West is simply to reinforce Western opinion about Russia, not to convince Russia or Russians themselves about anything. It’s completely masturbatory.

  16. Priss Factor [AKA "Andrea Ostrov Letania"] says: • Website

    You left out the most important factor in this. The 800 lb gorilla or 2 ton elephant in the room. Jewish power. This has been a Jewish War on Russia from day one. Look at the cast of characters in terms of both pundits and political players.

    Some say Conservatives are rattling their sabers at Putin because they hark back to the Cold War days when things were simpler. Not so. They are bitching about Putin for the same reason they bitch about Palestinians. To win Jewish support and money. Conservatives know that Jews are the most powerful people in American with a lock on many top institutions. They know that the great majority of Jews are Democrats and Liberals. They know that many Jews don’t see eye-to-eye on many issues that are important to Conservatives.
    So, Conservatives try to over-compensate on foreign policy to win over Jews. If Democrats are 99% pro-Israel, GOP tries to be 200% pro-Israel. If Dems have just a smidgen of sympathy for Palestinians, Republicans pretend that Palestinians are the new Nazis who must be ground to dust. If Democrats are anti-Russian, Republicans try to outdo the Democrats by making Putin out to be new Stalin-Hitler-Ming-the-Merciless.

    It’s all about groveling. We live in a country where a freak like Sheldon Adelson can casually say we should drop a nuke on Iran but still gets to play an important role in politics. Notice not a single Republican called out on his craziness. They are all running dog slaves of Jews, and so their foreign policy agenda is molded to pander to Jews.

    Jews hate Russia because Putin has stood for majority culture, heritage, religion, patriotism, and national identity. He’s been good to Jews, but he’s stressed the importance of Russian identity and culture above all in Russia. He’s not anti-minority, but he thinks Russians should be proudly pro-Russian. If we use the logic of Putin-ism, every European nation should stress its own national identity, culture, and heritage instead of ‘diversity’, ‘multi-culturalism’, ‘white guilt’, and worship of the Holocaust as the new religion. This is why Jews hate Putin. Not because Putin has been anti-Jewish — if anything, he’s been overly generous to Jews — but because he’s been pro-Russian. In the US, Jews love it when white folks praise Jews and Jewish culture/history/religion/identity(along with homosexuals) to high heaven, but they get very upset when there is even the slightest peep about white identity, white interests, white unity, and white power. And this is why Obama is with Jews on Russia. Obama has no personal animus against Putin. But as a black man as president in a white majority nation — and as his main allies are Jews and homos, both minority elites — , he also finds it alarming that Putin stands for majority identity, pride, unity, and power. He’s afraid that the Putin bug will spread throughout Europe and then may infect white folks in the US as well.

    That is why Jews have been working overtime to destroy Russia. It is why Jews have been promoting the likes of the Pussy Riot and Masha Gessen.

    Friedman is above all a Jewish supremacist. Paul Krugman is above all a Jewish supremacist. They are not just some abstract ‘liberals’. They are tribaliberals whose main identity is Jewish. Paul Krugman and Friedman feels more camaraderie with Jewish oligarchs in Russia than with working class Democrats or black underclass in America.
    Notice that Jews bitch about the oligarchic structure of Russia but overlook the fact that Russian Jews with the aid of American Jewish ‘advisers’ created the new order during the Yeltsin yrs. Putin inherited this order; he didn’t create it. Btw, given that US is run by the likes of Soros and Adelson, how is it not a form of oligarchy as well?

    And Jews don’t care about the suffering of the Russian middle class in Russia. If anything, they’ve feared the rise of a Russian middle class under Putin since middle class Russians would associate their improvement with Putinism. By destroying the middle class, Jews want to make Russian middle class hate Putinism and everything it stands for: nationalism, majority identity, Christianity, family values, etc.

    Jews were behind foreign policy during the Clinton years and what did they do to Iraq? Sanctions killed 100,000s of women and children. Madeleine Albright is a criminal like Kaganovich, the Jewish henchman of Stalin who killed millions in Ukraine during the Great Famine.
    Jews didn’t care about dead Ukrainians. They didn’t care about dead Iraqis. They don’t give a damn about dead Palestinians. Under Obama, Jews undermined stability in Libya and Syria, creating conditions that led to deaths of over 200,000.
    So why would Jews care about Russians?
    Dven though most Jews are secular, their view of humanity is supremacist and out of the Old Book. Gentiles are seen as cannon fodder or expendable cattle in the service of Jewish supremacist power.
    America is now an evil nation whose culture amounts to something like this:

    It’s a nation where Wall Street sharks and Las Vegas crooks can get away with just about anything.

    This is a Jewish War on Russia. To be sure, Russians are also to blame for being lazy, confused, drunk, and slovenly. If Russians shape up like old Prussians, they can build a great nation. But too many are like ‘white trash’.

    Though Russia is facing very hard times, they can turn this into an advantage. Learn the hard lesson that it cannot depend on energy export alone. Build its own industries and form closer ties with the non-West. EU, like the US, is totally under the domination of Jewish power.
    If Russians are a great people, they will use the current hardship as a key lesson and build up their nation as more of an independent power. Problem is Putin is surrounded by many fifth columnists.
    The current film THE INTERVIEW is about American assassinating Kim Jong Un, but the guy whom Jews really want to assassinate is Putin. The likes of Nuland who subverted Ukraine will go to any length to destroy Russia so that Jews will take it over like Jews have taken over US and forced ‘gay marriage’ on it. Consider the recent Rolling Stone rape hoax article by Sabrina Rubin Erderly. She is the Victoria Nuland of American journalism. Just as Nuland hates Russia, American Jews hate white gentiles. Yet, American Conservatives are a bunch of craven toadies like Ted Cruz who line up to kiss the asses of scum like William Kristol.

    We need to speak the truth. This is not a liberal vs conservative thing. It is about Jewish supremacism. As Democratic Party is essentially a Jewish party, its main goal is to further Jewish power. As GOP is eager to win over more favors and money from Jews, it goes out of way to bark rabidly at perceived enemies of Jews. GOP is a toady of Jewish power. If Jews hate Russia, let’s bark at Russia, so thinks the GOP. If Jews hate Palestinians, let’s dump on Palestinians and laugh at thousands of Palestinian women and children killed by Israeli bombs.
    US is an evil country dominated by little Jewish Hitlers.

    • Replies: @Wally
    , @Ryan
  17. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    I thought Collectivazation was manageable, I knew Armand Hammer needed his investment back when the Depression hit. I could count on Walter Duranty to make the Holodomor disappear in the American press, we were rid of Trotsky and his lack of government controls. As for Stalin being an anti-Semite, well shit, I was part of his inner circle and outlived him. I am a real person, do some research. As for present Ukraine situation, I would refer you to SiberianAirlines flight 1812, and ask do you need precedent? for MH-17?

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  18. TomB says:

    In response to my statement that at least the way Russia took the Crimea is and was “problematic” commentator “Realist’ wrote:

    Where did you get this info…MSM?

    Well in the first place it was obviously just an opinion but, given the problems that it *has* occasioned—which says nothing about the *validity* of those problems but just observes reality—can anyone really say that the Crimea business has not *proven* to be “problematic” in the least?

    But in fact I was more just saying that as an opinion because I do indeed think that Russia’s taking of the Crimea in the way it did was problematic.

    After WWII and the Cold War indeed it might be said that the very plinth of the idea of what kept the peace was the outlawing of the violent territorial aggrandizement of another country’s sovereign territory. And of course given the lead to WWII with the Soviet Union’s aggrandizements and then Germany’s that clearly had some validity.

    And indeed the prevention of same was at the very center of the idea of NATO: Guarantees of support to those members who faced violent aggrandizing actions.

    So to see such an action all over again, by Russia of all countries (given its historic aggrandizing impulses), seems yes, to me to be “problematic” at least in terms of things.

    I think I’ve been on record here as noting that this was the case even despite the hypocrisy of what we did with the break-up of Yugoslavia in Kosovo.

    Hypocrisy or not then, and even no matter that Russia’s Crimea move might well have been taken because of a too-aggressive “NATOization” that we undertook, still I think *something* has to be done and has to be done as opposed to just essentially saying that “whoever is stronger and wants a chunk of someone else that’s okay.”

    And thus I’m also on record here I think as saying that the best way to do so is to find a way to get Russia to agree that its Crimea move was a one-off type thing, and that it has no further territorial ambitions elsewhere. Or, if it does, to accomplish its goals peaceably.

    Nevertheless, if you don’t feel that Russia’s forcible taking of the Crimea doesn’t at least present *some* problems, with all the precedent it might seem to set, with all the nervousness of Russia’s neighbors that it has already clearly caused, with all the risk that same would eventually cause a nuking up of some of those neighbors and the risks inherent in that, okay.

    As I said, my contrary view is just my opinion and you are certainly entitled to yours.

  19. KA says:

    Give him 6 months. He has been giving 6 months in half yearly installment to American unfaithful to wars for years .

    And this is gem ” What really seems to matter to these pundits is getting a shot in at their conservative rivals, not the fate of average Russians. This attitude reminded me of an earlier phase of these mindless liberal-conservative food fights – in 1990 when conservative Robert Novak looked for ways to resolve Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait by accepting Saddam Hussein’s private offers to withdraw rather than resorting to war.”

  20. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    I noticed in the build up for the Sochi games, there was a big focus on sexism and gay persecution in Russia…at the games there was a lot of petty nitpicking about the quality of the food or hotels

    It seemed strange at the time – I’m sure Russia has it’s issues, but it’s far from the worst offender…(we have ‘allies’ such as Saudi Arabia where homosexuality is illegal and women aren’t even allowed to drive)

    It seems clear to me there WAS a concerted effort by the US to create a coup…(Nuland pretty much confirms it with that ‘5 billion dollar’ comment) what I can’t understand is WHY?

    I understand it is corrupt there, but this is hardly unique to Ukraine…why, would they stir this hornets nest? How does the United States gain by taking a stable status quo and creating a civil war?

    Surely Nuland as ambassador to Ukraine MUST know that the Russian navy has been stationed in Crimea for a very long time (I believe since the 1700s)…How could Putin do anything differently! NATO exists to contain Russia – now it will have juristiction over the Russian Navy’s bases?? It’s beyond absurd…they had to understand they were creating a problem.

    Why? Who gains from this? There’s going to be a long ugly civil war, and ultimately Russia will carve out some space in the east and keep Crimea. I don’t see how it could end any other way.

    Why would NATO even want to create the tension of sitting on the Russian border…it’s less dangerous for everyone to have a buffer there.

    I hate to say it, but some sort of Neocon/Jewish angle is the only thing that makes any sense…they have a lot of history in the region…I’m quite sure the average American would prefer to mind their own business.

  21. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    I hate to say it, but some sort of Neocon/Jewish angle is the only thing that makes any sense…they have a lot of history in the region…

    Yes, that is the crux of it. The entire new Cold War on Russia is down to the simple fact of Jews having long memories.

  22. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    It is just a snippet of a long omnipresent pervasive and thoroughly ingrained culture integrating Isarel military and personal life style of Palestinian. Palestinian gays and lesbians are used as spy,informants,provocatuer , double agents,by IDF . Fear of being exposed drives the LGBT community to act against themselves ,against their family and the Palestinian resistance movement. Those very Israeli 5 th columnists in US who excoriate Muslim cultures and Russia’sutin for homophobia and recite the tolerance of Israel in contrast ,are fully aware of the plight and of the exploitation of LGBT under Israeli occupation.

    • Replies: @SFG
  23. Wally says: • Website
    @Priss Factor

    It’s curious that like most of Europe it is illegal to scrutinize the ‘holocau$t’ storyline in Russia.

    It Putin wanted to strike back reforming that law against free speech would be a good place to start.

    And your Hitler reference is uninformed. There was no ‘6M & gas chambers’. Thanks.

  24. Ryan says:
    @Priss Factor

    Andrea Ostrov Letania,

    Well stated and well written.

  25. Brewer says:

    Wow. Great site. Just when I was about giving up on you Yanks, convinced you were all zonked on ziodust.

    The Putin/Russia hatefest has flushed a few “write by numbers” merchants out of the woodwork. They’re easy to spot when they don’t mention Russia’s massive trade deals and currency agreement with China or the fact that Russia has its claw on Europe’s gas valve. That’s not to mention the “new silk road” which heralds a gigantic new Asia/Europe economic and trade zone.
    Pepe Escobar has the scoop:

    Happy Christmas.

  26. Danton says:

    We were doing splendidly and then the CIA went into the Ukraine with a color uprising. It is ironic how our tax dollars turn around and smack us in the face. The best thing to be done now is to split the Ukraine up and give the Polish catholic part back to Poland.

  27. MRW says:

    I agree. Smart.

    • Replies: @MRW
  28. MRW says:

    I was referring to this:

    December 24, 2014 at 9:01 am GMT
    What a terrific piece! Thank you for providing a voice of sanity.

  29. SFG says:

    Israel’s got some of the most extensive LGBT rights in its own territory–I’m not surprised, however, they’d use blackmail against Palestinian LGBTs. It’s what every intelligence service does.

    Me, I just can’t get into the crowing over the collapse of the Russian economy. We’re going to make some old babushka freeze to death over the Ukraine?

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    , @Jeff Davis
    , @KA
  30. @Biff

    NPR is not all bad – it provides a venue for old hacks to continue to earn a buck plus it is goldmine for manufacturers of tote bags during pledge weeks.
    Seriously, I am also without a clue as to why the Left hates Putin – must have something to do with the usual Zionist sources hating Putin, which again I can’t comprehend as to why.

    • Replies: @Cagey Beast
  31. Joe Hill says:

    NPR = National Propaganda Radio

  32. @TomB

    In reality, a new Cold War is an absolute necessity. For, without imaginary enemies and fake wars to parade before an ignorant American public, it would be impossible for the ruling class (consisting equally of liberals and conservatives who thrive from them) to justify America’s global killing machine and gigantic “defense” budget that supports it.

  33. “Krugman, who is quickly jettisoning his reputation for thoughtfulness”

    Thanks for the laugh, I enjoy well done satire.

  34. Joe Hill says:

    This is a rather strange essay. I certainly agree with Mr Parry’s conclusions. But I have a very big problem with Mr Parry quoting Kissinger. The only reference to Kissinger I want to see is, “The mass murderer Kissinger has been arrested, indicted, convicted, and sentenced to spend the rest of his miserable life in a tiny cage.”

    It is unconscionable to give war criminals a podium. The only words I want to hear from Kissenger are, “I am a mass murderer, and I am sorry for my crimes against humanity”.

    Rather than quoting garbage from the empire’s messenger boys, Mr Parry needs to step back a bit and discuss the big picture. Americans still don’t understand the concepts of “manufacture of consent” and the role of propaganda in turning a nation into a compliant, passive, unthinking flock of sheep, afraid of its own shadow. Americans still don’t understand that Our Dear Leaders have created a global empire determined to crush any nation who fails to obey, just as the police are ever-ready to gun down any civilian who fails to obey.

    • Replies: @KA
  35. posa says:

    In the end the joke’s on the Washington Consensus. As this attack on Russia escalates the fallout could be, well, real.

    NATO is starting to crack over sanctions, with a French-Italian- Austrian- Danish bloc emerging against more sanctions. Germany is very divided. Putin has cards to play and forced into a corner he will play them if he thinks his back is up against the wall.

    The collapse in oil prices will hurt the US as well if the fracking sectors craters as well.

    Military escalation is always a possibility too… and that’s where deep dangers lie.

  36. @richard vajs

    ….. I am also without a clue as to why the Left hates Putin – must have something to do with the usual Zionist sources hating Putin, which again I can’t comprehend as to why.

    I think the liberal-libertine-progressives are actually being perfectly consistent and true to their type when they express hatred of Putin. Putin represents the sort of real opposition to them that they’ve hated for at least the last hundred years. Putin the man has come to represent a broad swath of Russian, European and Christian culture that they thought they’d killed, that they’d left for dead in the 20th century. It makes sense for the liberal-progressive Egregore* to turn on Putin in a blind rage: “I killed you! You’re supposed to be dead!”


    Note though that Putin and his team are not dumb reactionaries either. I found this brief exchange between Putin and an Orthodox monk very interesting for what light it throws on the matter. Putin reacts strongly against having his hand kissed in the traditional way of the Tsars and gives a “don’t be cute” gesture to the clergyman who tries it on him:
    I’m sure the Telegraph staff posted the clip because they think it’s some kind of gaffe, when in fact it’s the opposite.

  37. @unit472

    Hogwash from an unidentified propagandist. When you develop the courage to identify yourself, then we’ll reconsider your issues with credibility.

  38. GPS evolved from NAVSTAR. It was made for mid-course corrections of Trident-2 and Minuteman-3 in order to be able to hit Russian missile silos accurately. Missile engineer Bob on the new US missiles in Romania, Poland and on 32 ships in the Mediterranean Sea: “Whether they are on ships or land, they are still a necessary component for an unanswerable first strike.” This leads to Launch On Warning, probably by 2017, followed by Suicide by mistake. We can’t die without the US getting more missiles in Eastern Europe !

  39. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    You don’t get it. Israel maintains extensive biodata and social data on each and every Palestininan.
    Israel pursues every Arab individual and creates dossier on each of them both within and outside the separation wall. It then asks and forces those with different sexual orientation to become an informant . Otherwise these individuals face exposure to the Arab society .
    Protecting the rights of LGBT in Israel is limited to Jewish LGBT . The rabbi has categorized the human by being putting the straight Jews on the top rung followed by the LGBT Jewish followed by the gentile .

  40. Anonymous • Disclaimer says: • Website

    You wrote, “However one feels about Yanukovych, the fact is the man fled to Russia after his own people turned against him.”

    Nonsense. The U.S. through its NGO adjuncts stood up the Maidan coup, funded it, organized it and trained it. The execrable John McCain journeyed to Kiev on the eve of the coup and stood on the stage with Maidan’s neo-Nazis and State’s foul-mouthed Victoria Nuland handpicked the legitimate government’s successors.. More than 70 people were killed in the coup on both sides, and (interestingly enough) casualties on both sides seem to have been committed with the same weapons.

    Just which propaganda”Unit” do you belong to, 472?

  41. KA says:
    Idiocy spread to the household of the Vice President in 2006.
    It was just like the palace based politics that North Korea pursues . Just like the citizen of NK has no voice over what done to them ,the citizen of Syria and Iraq and Iran had no voice what Cheneys daughter was doing to them .

  42. D505 says:

    @TomB also:

    This “taking” Crimea by Russia has been distorted, as written about time and again by Robert Parry, the author of the above essay. Russia already had a significant presence in Crimea via its military base at Sebastopol, let alone the cultural and ancestral ties with most Crimeans. With the February shenanigans from Nuland et al Crimea itself called for a vote to annex to Russia. The vote passed by something like 95%. This is not Russia “taking Crimea.”

  43. @SFG

    Not to worry. Putin continues to score impressive victories over the Empire. Yes, they “lost” Ukraine to the Neocons, but in a counter-move of unrivaled strategic elegance Putin used demonstrably peaceful, iconic, self-legitimizing democratic electoral techniques (plebiscite and referendum) to “repossess” the Crimea, and from a safe remove alienate from Neocon capture the industrial eastern, Russo-centric, “developed” part of Ukraine. Leaving the Empire holding the bankrupt, impoverished, Nazified basket-case of western Ukraine. Sweet.

    The “Chess master Putin wins yet again” narrative must needs be obliterated from Western awareness — but aaaargh!, again that damned internet! So the MSM responds with the obligatory “aggression”and “invasion” characterizations despite the globally transparent and self-evidently peaceful method of strategic excision and strategic accession. Not even a papercut! And now the MSM, shamelessly indifferent to the world’s sniggering reaction to their brazen and laughable “Who you gonna believe, me or your lying eyes?” ploy, closes ranks and pumps out yet more hogwash. With the follow on of sanctions and then the oil price crash the MSM is dutifully trumpeting — and of course exaggerating — the “tough consequences”, meted out to Russia/ Putin by Western “world cop” retaliation. Punishment doesn’t satisfy when too easily seen as political kabuki — damn the internet yet agai. Still, the MSM soldiers on, dutifully availing itself of adjectives from the “pain” category — “crushing”, “crippling”, “catastrophic” “devastating”. But we should know better, and soon will –the pain isn’t nearly as bad as the MSM portrays it.

    Life goes on. The Empire spirals downward. Pursue your own prosperity, and keep your children away from the empire’s death machine.

  44. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    One of the constant themes of US foreign policy shenanigans is blowback. US aggression against Putin only seems to be driving Russia towards China, which is purchasing Russian oil and gas and helping to stabilize the ruble. I wonder if the small neocons minds have figured out what happens next.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  45. Don G. says:

    All very obvious but what isn’t obvious is the question on whether American politicians actually understand that it’s all a fraudulent attempt to demonize Putin and thereby justify another US led war. It would seem that they couldn’t be that ignorant of the real life situation, as laid out by this author. Is it a fight for the common good in their minds, even though it’s so blatantly obvious that it’s not?

  46. This clip helps show why the capitalist side of the liberal-libertine coalition doesn’t much like him either: “Vladimir Putin Rage”

    The mainstream so-called Left and so-called Right in the West have ended up agreeing on almost everything that matters in the economy and society and Putin’s Russia is entirely out of step with all of them.

  47. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @War for Blair Mountain

    The SS Ladies you mention have received their inspiration and training from likes of Elza Koch in Gestapo. Their style, behavior, mannerism, lack of any ability to understand events, total indoctrination and bloodlust, sadistic impulses to pervert facts, drool over torturing and murdering of countless thousands of humans is beyond comprehension. And so is of their partners – SS Gents. But that story is much more tragic. It would take an army of psychiatrists, philosophers, behaviorist etc. to analyse those lost souls.

  48. KA says:
    @Joe Hill

    Can we quote a political psychopath ,political beast and reckless assassin?

    I think we can .Lawyers use the admission of the guilt or of the evidences of the warning by the criminals in open or secret meetings .They use all kind of correspondences back and forth among the culprits or among the gangs . Kissinger’s quotes fall into these categories . He is simply afraid that this war is not going to be remotely successful even by the metrics of Libya or standard of Afghanistan .
    Putin is not Breznev .He is not going to get sucked in the way Breznev was in Afghanistan 1979 fiasco though that is exactly what Kerry/Nuland/Kagan are hoping for.

  49. KA says:

    “Saddam Hussein’s regime was brutally oppressive to its perceived enemies, yet surprisingly tolerant when it came to women’s rights (even involving adultery) and to gay people. Hussein oversaw a secular dictatorship, not an Islamist fundamentalist regime.”

    Hussain anticipated (or did he learn from the west ?) the American way of achieving social engineering – allow personal human behaviors that dont thereat the state but punish overwhelmingly the whistleblowers, political economic activists .

  50. @War for Blair Mountain

    Bill, I wouldn’t be surprised that Victoria Nudelman aka Nuland, Susan Rice, and Samantha Powers gave the direct order to shoot down Malaysia Flight MH-17 either – especially “F**k the EU” Nuland. These three lunatic clowns are psychotic enough to give such an order, with Nuland in charge. After all, that evil witch (along with her co-conspirator, Geoffrey Pyatt) plotted the overthrow of the constitutionally elected Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and his gov’t and replace it with anti-Putin, pro-USSA stooges such as Arseniy Yatsenyuk (Yats the Yid).
    There’s only one solution to this serious problem; that is, remove all of these war criminals from power, try them in an International Court of Law, and sentence them to life in solitary confinement with no possibility of parole. They ousted a constitutionally elected gov’t via a violent coup d’etat and forced Yanukovych to flee for his life to Russia.
    If there never had been a coup and the violence it had created, Eastern Europe would have remained stable, along with normal, friendly relations between Russia and the West. However, the insatiable greed of the USSA under the thumb of a group even more consumed with insatiable greed and hate sabotaged this potential for economic/political stability in E. Europe. Yanukovych tried to do what was best for Ukraine – maintain the country’s economic and political stability – but the Zionists’ hatred and greed destroyed it all; that, as a result, the current regime under thugs such as Yatsenyuk and current President Petro (Porky) Poroshenko have run the country into the ground. These gangsters have NO love or patriotism toward Ukraine; all they want are power and riches.

  51. @David

    The “broad” conspiracy you and many others have come to recognize, is a conspiracy of “like interest”, with International Judaism serving as its driving force and intellectual foundation. Looking at it from a historical point of view, it is the same conspiracy that brought every wealthy nation to its knees in the past 2000 years.

  52. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    And undo the Nixon opening to China which was done to disconect the USSR/China alliance.

  53. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    The following links explain it all quite well. It’s all part of the Great Game for control of the world.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  54. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Interesting stuff to ponder…

    It’s strange how the public is always in the dark about what’s happening and why. No matter what actions are taken we are told they being done for humanitarian reasons…’defending freedom’

  55. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    @Likud Bot

    I’ve heard so much gloating about this kind of scoop that I wonder how many of them are actually Israeli PR. The link you showed has the same memes about world-class efficiency, impressive technology, and cultured young people with a moral conscience handling great responsibility while defending the Jewish state.

  56. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    First of all thank you for your service to the USSR. You are right that Stalin was no anti-Semite. The real anti-Semites are the Nazis of Banderastan whom we are fighting today. The West, also Nazi, claims something called a Holodomor happened in the Ukraine and they are using this Russophobic lie to justify Ukrainian nationhood when we all know it never happened and that is why my government will never recognize it. We could use more fine men like you today to sort out these Ukie Nazis once and for all. Dasvidyanya.

    P.S. please thank your people in Israel for snubbing US/European demands that our reunification with Crimea be condemned in the UN. With good friends like Israel, especially Avigdor Lieberman, and fine men like Stephen Cohen at The Nation relations between our two peoples are secure for the forseeable future.

  57. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    From my reading and analysis, the US/west must crush Russia (first, then China) in order to protect its position of being the “world reserve currency” which is the only things keeping the West afloat, although barely. There have been lots of stories over the last 2-3 years of BRICS (esp. Russia) creating payment systems in the national currencies and bypassing the US$ for settlements. No reserve currency = crashed US economy = crashed western economy. The US either has to be sole world hegemon or its toast.

  58. anon • Disclaimer says:

    Let’s sort it all out.

    – There was already a color revolution in Ukraine in 2004, and in 2014 it could’ve ended the same – ousting Yanukovich (second time). Instead it ended up in a war and economic problems.
    – Russia used to be allies with NATO until April 2014, when the program got suspended by NATO after the Crimea annexation. So it’s not like NATO was acting as an enemy to make the annexation happen.
    – Russia is a country with a lot of anti-Americanism (more so then Iran) and anti-Western propaganda (USSR inheritance), which was revived under the Putin presidency, long before the Ukrainian crisis of 2014. But the opposition is even more nationalistic, so Putin being “too pro-Western” can cost him power. Annexing Crimea and “defending Russians in Ukraine” was not only a move against a possible NATO’s expansion but also a populist move which caused Putin’s ratings to go up. (I was born in Russia and recently read quite a bit in Russian so I know the attitudes; and yes, it’s “the West” aka “damn capitalists”)
    – The civil war in Ukraine is a war of nationalists, Russian against Ukrainian. It’s not like one side is demons, the other one is heroes, there are no any white hats in this story. I even suspect they acted in collusion to gain power over both countries (there are some testimonials) but then Putin managed to pull out some radical key figures on the Russian side. But the war is not easy to stop.
    – The US politics getting into this hornet’s nest is stupid. Taking sides is double stupid.

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