The western media is now carrying the story of a protest on the streets of Manezh Square in Moscow which occurred on Tuesday, December 30th. At the center of the rally was Alexei Navalny, self-proclaimed “anti-corruption” blogger and head of the largest opposition movement of the leadership of Vladimir Putin and his administration in Russia. Navalny was just convicted of defrauding a cosmetics company of about $440,000 and given a suspended sentence of 3 1/2 years. Relating to the same case, his brother, Oleg, will be sent to prison for the same period of time. In 2013, Alexei Navalny was also tried and convicted of embezzling over $500,000 from the state-owned timber company Kirovles, where Navalny worked as a volunteer in 2009.
Have to say I agree. Post-Modern “anything goes-ism” has taken humanity into a rapid slide toward animalism.
The monitoring of the internet for obscene language has become necessary as in April 2013 President Vladimir Putin signed into force a federal law banning the use of obscene language in mass media under threat of fines up to 200,000 rubles ($5,500). Breaking the law will result in an official warning to the media outlet and two such warning within 12 months could mean the outlet’s government license is revoked.The law applies both to text prepared by editorial teams and to user comments if they are publicly accessible.
On Monday this week Vladimir Putin signed into law another bill concerning the use of obscene language – the ban on swear words in literature and art, including concerts, theatre, plays and public movie shows.
The law has drawn a lot of criticism from some parts of the Russian artistic community who fear their freedom of expression is being denied. However, according to a poll conducted by the Public Opinion foundation in 2013, 84 percent of Russians supported the ban on obscenities.
Do yourself a favor and take some time to read this over the next few days. It is “a must-read for westerners needing to understand what is really happening in both the Ukraine and the wider Anglo-US-NATO globalisation drive which it brings into sharp focus.”
Firstly, let me say that sometimes it’s pleasant to be wrong. Well, I got it wrong. At the beginning of February my colleague, Elena Ponomarëva, and I discussed the question, could we take Crimea? I was a pessimist and said, 10% chance that we’ll take Crimea. We won’t get it because the West will react aggressively, and our authorities lack the courage. She said, on the contrary 90% chance that we take Crimea, and 10% chance that it doesn’t happen. She was right. I was wrong.
Without doubt, the re-unification with Crimea is a very important landmark. In a recent TV interview I said that this is genuinely the end of the disgraceful era which began in Malta on the 2-3rd Dec 1989, when Gorbachev surrendered absolutely everything to Bush, even what wasn’t asked for.
After that everything possible was given up. Rays of hope began to appear later, during the Putin administration. There was the war of 08.08.08. But later we failed to support Libya. Although we did put the foot down at Syria. But this is all far away from Russian lands. But Ukraine and Crimea – this is a completely new situation. We started to re-take our territory, little by little. Started doing as the Muscovite princes did in the 14th, 15th century, what the first Romanovs did, and the Stalin system in the 1930s, all of which was: leaving the historical zone of defeat.
The US has been behind the Ukrainian crisis from the beginning, but was initially flying low, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said. He added that if sanctions continue, Russia will have to reconsider who has access to key sectors of its economy.
“I think what is happening now shows us who really was mastering the process from the beginning. But in the beginning, the United States preferred to remain in the shadow,” Putin said, as quoted by RIA Novosti.
Putin stated that since the US has taken a lead role in resolving the political crisis in Ukraine, it is “telling that they originally were behind this process, but now they just have emerged as leaders” of it.
Yup. I’m waiting for Putin to release the evidence that 9-11 was a U.S./Israeli inside job.
What did we expect? What is so amazing is how Obama and Kerry managed to so completely make themselves look like fools by taking a completely untenable position, lying through their teeth, and now, just continue the farcical pretense that they have brains and know what they are doing.
There was another phone call today between Secretary of State Kerry and the Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov. The call came after a strategy meeting on Ukraine in the White House. During the call Kerry agreed to Russian demands for a federalization of the Ukraine in which the federal states will have a strong autonomy against a neutralized central government. Putin had offered this “off-ramp” from the escalation and Obama has taken it.
The Russian announcement:
(Reuters) – Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry agreed on Sunday to seek a solution to crisis in Ukraine by pushing for constitutional reforms there, the Russian foreign ministry said.It did not go into details on the kind of reforms needed except to say they should come “in a generally acceptable form and while taking into the account the interests of all regions of Ukraine“.
“Sergei Lavrov and John Kerry agreed to continue work to find a resolution on Ukraine through a speedy launch of constitutional reform with the support of international community,” the ministry said in a statement.
The idea of a “constitutional reform” is from the Russians documented in a Russian “non-paper”.
It describes the process of getting to a new Ukrainian constitution and sets some parameters for it. The Russian language will be again official language next to the Ukrainian, the regions will have high autonomy, there will be no interferences in church affairs and the Ukraine will stay politically and militarily neutral. Any autonomy decision by the Crimea would be accepted. This would all be guaranteed by a “Support Group for Ukraine” consisting of the US, EU and Russia and would be cemented in an UN Security Council resolution.
It seems that Kerry and Obama have largely accepted these parameters. They are now, of course, selling this solution as their own which is, as the “non-paper” proves, not the reality.
Here is Kerry suddenly “urging Russia” to accept the things Russia had demanded and which Kerry had earlier never mentioned:
Secretary of State John Kerry called on Moscow to return its troops in Crimea to their bases, pull back forces from the Ukraine border, halt incitement in eastern Ukraine and support the political reforms in Ukraine that would protect ethnic Russians, Russian speakers and others in the former Soviet Republic that Russia says it is concerned about.
In a phone call with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, their second since unsuccessful face-to-face talks on Friday in London, Kerry urged Russia “to support efforts by Ukrainians across the spectrum to address power sharing and decentralization through a constitutional reform process that is broadly inclusive and protects the rights of minorities,” the State Department said.
As it looks now Obama has given up. The U.S. plot to snatch the Ukraine from Russia and to integrate it into NATO and the EU seems to have failed. Russia taking Crimea and having 93% of the voters there agree to join Russia has made the main objective of the U.S. plans, to kick the Russians out of Sevastopol and thereby out of the Middle East, impossible.
The Russian (non public) threat to also immediately take the eastern and southern provinces from the Ukraine has pushed the U.S. into agreeing to the Russian conditions mentioned above. The only alternative to that would be a military confrontation which the U.S. and Europeans are not willing to risk. Despite the anti-Russian campaign in the media a majority of U.S. people as well as EU folks are against any such confrontation. The U.S. never held the cards it needed to win this game.
Should all go well and a new Ukrainian constitution fit the Russian conditions the “west” may well be allowed to pay for the monthly bills Gazprom will keep sending to Kiev.
It will take some time to implement all of this. What dirty tricks will the neocons in Washington now try to prevent this outcome?
As usual, Joe has dug up the dirt and put the puzzle together. There are a few things in this article that are just shocking like: “Based on its 1970-1990 growth rate, Ukraine’s population should today be 57 million. Thus, it can be argued, the IMF is responsible for the death of up to one third of Ukraine’s population these last two decades.”
All anti-imperialists that have been secretly longing for the day when the last great Empire of our ‘modern’ era would finally do what all the ‘best’ Empires have done – overextend itself in both reach and hubris for all to see and usher in its collapse – should be looking at the situation in Ukraine with hope and expectation.
Well, maybe I’m getting a little carried away there, but the US-Ukraine-Russia debacle does seem to be presenting ‘we the people’ with a rare opportunity to see the great American Empire as the monolithic edifice, composed largely of lies, propaganda, rhetoric, fear and public credulity that it is. There is, perhaps, a chance to see that the emperor really is naked, and that our overblown overlords and their “greatest democracy on earth” exist and persist only because we all believe their carefully crafted lies served up to us in the yellow journalism of the Empire’s fourth estate, the mainstream media.
As the empire fades and the hubris of its leaders increases however, it seems even those carefully crafted lies aren’t having the desired effect. This week, both Obama and John Kerry exposed America’s vaunted ‘exceptionalism’ as being based on exceptional dishonesty when they made statements about Russian intervention in Ukraine. The funny thing is, both Obama and Kerry were actually trying to do the opposite – present themselves as paragons of righteousness. Apparently the Neocons from whom they take their orders failed to mention to these two spokesmen for Empire that ‘chutzpah’ should never be pushed too far, lest you expose your unmitigated effrontery and impudence for all the world to see.
In attempting to rally world public opinion behind him and against Russian President Putin, Kerry stated:
“You just don’t in the 21st century behave in 19th century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped up pretext.”
Emphasizing the point, he inadvisedly added:
“You just don’t invade another country on a phony pretext in order to assert your interests.”
“any violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity […] would represent a profound interference in matters that must be determined by the Ukrainian people. Throughout this crisis we have been very clear about one fundamental principle, the Ukrainian people deserve the opportunity to determine their own future […] human beings have a universal right to determine their own future”.
I probably don’t need to go into too much detail about why, on the basis of these statements alone, the Nobel Committee should invent a new category called ‘most hypocritical statement by a politician in the history of the world‘ and immediately present it jointly to Kerry and Obama, so I’ll just throw out a few country names: Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria. On Iraq, Kerry voted for the 2003 US military invasion on completely trumped up charges about non-existent WMDs that were used as a phony pretext so that people like Kerry could ‘assert their interests’. 1.5 million Iraqi civilians died as a result and today the country is in ruins and plagued by bombings and assassinations. Kerry went on to defend his vote during his run for president in 2004 against Bush. Obama authorized the March 2011 NATO bombing of Libya without congressional approval on completely trumped up charges of “protecting civilians” and justified by “right to protect” that completely denied the Libyan people their purported ‘universal right to determine their own future’. The bombing ultimately caused the deaths of 40,000 Libyan civilians and installed a fundamentalist Islamic government.
It really is horrifying to realize that we live in a world run by these cretins.
The US Secretary of State spoke today of the unacceptability of invading a sovereign country on phony pretexts in order to assert one’s own interests in the 21st century. But no, he was not speaking about the United States, as one might have thought.
“You just don’t invade another country on phony pretext in order to assert your interests,” John Kerry said during an interview with NBC’s Meet the Press. “This is an act of aggression that is completely trumped up in terms of its pretext. It’s really 19th century behaviour in the 21st century.”
Kerry has also threatened to isolate Russia economically and politically and warned of potential asset freezes and visa bans, adding to media and political hype that followed Russia authorization of sending a stabilization force in Crimea on official request from the authorities.
“There could be certainly disruption of any of the normal trade routine, there could be business drawback on investment in the country,” he said. “There could even be ultimately asset freezes, visa bans.”
Although Kerry was never challenged by the interviewer to comment in terms of that statement on Washington’s own constant threats to use force and military invasions in Iraq and Afghanistan, those who watched the interview immediately smelled the hypocrisy.
“Since when does the United States government genuinely subscribe and defend the concept of sovereignty and territorial integrity? They certainly are not doing that at the moment in Syria,” Marcus Papadopoulos, commentator for Politics First told RT. “They certainly did not do that when they attacked Libya. They certainly didn’t do that when they invaded Iraq. They certainly didn’t do that when they attacked Serbia over Kosovo and then later on recognized Kosovo’s unilateral declaration of independence. The United States government merely pays lip service to sovereignty and territorial integrity, it picks and choses.”