Category Archives: Russia

The sanction saga

What is at stake

Putin on the Ukrainian-Russian relationship:

“Our countries’ companies have developed close ties in all the basic industries: in the fuel and energy sector, which includes nuclear power, in chemical production, in aviation and machine building, space, metallurgy and metals processing, in construction and agriculture. We have developed unique production chains and created technological alliances. Russian capital represents about 32 percent of the Ukrainian banking system.”[1]

The Russian government has been slowly revealing its posture to the world. It is saying “No” to an unfair assault on the people. Instead business is on the cards, everywhere. To have a good understanding of the bigger picture check out the “Energy ballet” that Pepe Escobar has been so eloquently writing about.

The back and forth tossing around of the likes of Master Card and Visa is a good case in point of Russia’s stronger position now[2]. This is not the 90s and the Russians are keen to assert themselves. Upset at being blocked out of his money, the President’s close friend and billionaire is now banking with Union Pay[3].

“We, Russia, cannot talk about any ceasefire conditions whatsoever, or possible agreements between Kiev, Donetsk and Lugansk,” Putin stated recently in Minsk[4].

This is the real foreign policy difference that has now emerged from the Russian camp.

We recently saw a press conference of the resistance setting the stage for a wider struggle and now we have a green light from Russia. This is the real story of the week.

International Response

The illusion that the world stands with the aggressor is slowly being replaced as the showdown gains momentum. This is a quick snapshot of some leading headlines.

Brazil
Brazil has not received a request from the EU to halt increasing exports to Russia, but if it does, Brasilia wouldn’t care, Ambassador Antonio Jose Vallim Guerreiro told a news conference in Moscow Thursday.”[5]

Ecuador
On sanctions, President Correa said “I want to immediately say that we don’t need to get anybody’s permission to sell products to friendly countries: as far as we know Latin America isn’t a part of the European Union,” [6]

Spain 
The Spanish have been long protesting Russian sanctions and the crisis is only growing worse.  The EU’s measly allocation of €125 million in emergency support is absurd when you consider the actual cost of Russian sanctions. The trade embargo could cost the EU €6.7 billion ($9 billion) and cost up to 130,000 jobs.[7]

Greece
The civil disobedience movement is gaining ground with strong criticism of the EU sanctions.  The veteran leftist Manolis Glezos has even penned an emotional letter to President Putin urging him to exempt Athens from sanctions[8]. The situation is dire.

Serbia
The Serbs have suffered a lot from Nato and the wounds are still fresh. Their solidarity with Russia, despite being hung out to dry during Clinton’s “democracy initiatives”, is commendable[9].

Germany
The German chancellor, Angela Merkel, has been sending mixed signals through out this conflict. While at one hand she seems to be extending the olive branch, on the other she entices the Ukrainian oligarchy with rebuilding the east (post cleansing).

Germany also played an active part in the coup and what followed. It is an active participant in this conflict, it cannot simply be absolved of all blame. Now, as the plan foils and the Nazi regime falters, we have a sudden realization of goals. All of a sudden there is talk of negotiation and federalisation[10].

This is quite a 180 degree U-turn. This could be a ploy as experienced previously, following resistance momentum and territory gains.

Poodle of the week

Canada has won this weeks “Impress the Emperor” contest. It is eager to show the world that it is standing up to big bad Russia[11].

Internal breakdown of the state:

The Ukrainian state is in total disrepair, it was already crumbling under US sponsored “democracy” initiatives that brought about the rabidly russophobic and fascist government in power.

The zombies that form the popular support base of the Ukrainian regime, are not just paying for their “EU dream” in mere street protests. They are now actively brainwashed, recruited and sent to die in a war[12].

The Russian president has already given in his analysis with a whopping 165 billion needed to revive Ukraine[13]. Right now Ukraine is on the operating table, hopelessly unaware, and soon to be woken up when there is no money for morphine.

It will be a painful awakening for a lawless, corrupt puppet state with a federalised oligarchy. The Minister of Economy has resigned[14] and the choco-king is busy cashing out[15]. It is a free for all right now in Ukraine, anything goes.

Protesters are now demanding that the Defence Minister resign and aid to Ilovaysk be sent[16]. Notice how the population is so much under the influence of state propaganda that it is not questioning any logic here. Why are they fighting the residents in the east? Why can they not be left in peace? A war should always be questioned.

Meanwhile, on planet earth, the Novurussiyan Armed Forces (NAF) have been gaining ground with the capture of Novoazovsk[17] and are now reported to be marching further ahead as far as Berdyans’k[18].

Prior to the ingenious decision to hand over “Nuclear Material” security to fascists[19] the government had also struck a deal with Fasington for Nuclear fuel. Nuclear fuel that is not just incompatible in comparison to the Russian made fuel (used previously and made for purpose) but will most likely cause a meltdown[20].

It is inhuman, beyond measure, when someone is willing to risk a nuclear disaster for an agenda.

AE


[1] Speech at the meeting of the Customs Union Heads of State with President of Ukraine and European Union representatives (kremlin.ru, english, 26-08-2014)

[2] Mastercard extension: http://rt.com/business/183124-russia-deadline-visa-mastercard/

[3] http://carnegie.ru/2014/08/24/as-us-eu-close-doors-china-russia-open-new-ones/hm81

[4] Minsk conference: http://rt.com/news/182976-putin-poroshenko-ukraine-talks/

[5] Brazil’s response: http://rt.com/business/181876-brazil-russia-eu-sanctions/

[6] Ecuador’s response: http://rt.com/business/179972-ecuador-russia-agriculture-ban/

[7] Spain sanction protest: http://rt.com/news/181992-spanish-farmers-russia-sanctions/

[8] Letter to Putin: http://greece.greekreporter.com/2014/08/10/wwii-hero-greek-eurodeputy-letter-putin-embargo-greece/

[9] Serbia on food deliveries: http://rt.com/business/182076-serbia-food-deliveries-russia/

[10] Germany’s U-turn: http://euobserver.com/foreign/125331

[11] Canada in the Arctic: http://rt.com/news/182992-canada-sovereignty-arctic-russia/

[12] Civilian conscription: http://www.kyivpost.com/multimedia/photo/presentation-civil-defence-training-programm-361080.html

[13] Cost to join EU Association Agreement: http://rt.com/business/182868-russia-ukraine-europe-trade/

[14] Minister of Economy resigns
http://www.voanews.com/content/ukraine-economy-minister-resigns-cites-frustrations/2423091.html

[15] Ukrainian PM selling assets: http://en.itar-tass.com/economy/746201

[16] Demand for Defese Minister to resign: http://rt.com/news/183396-kiev-poroshenko-military-protest/

[17] Capture of Novoazovsk
http://rt.com/news/183368-ukraine-novoazovsk-kiev-troops/

[18] Unconfirmed reports of marching on Berdyans’k
http://vineyardsaker.blogspot.co.nz/2014/08/not-confirmed-but-maybe-open-thread.html

[19] Ukraine’s deterioting situation: http://www.vineyardsaker.co.nz/2014/08/20/ukraines-descent-into-chaos-and-the-sanction-recoil/

[20] Nuclear deal with the US: http://rt.com/news/183248-nuclear-ukraine-threat-osce/

 

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

The war in Ukraine enters the next stage

This is no ordinary run of the mill press conference, this is a formation of a framework of a resistance army. Not a resistance militia. There is a big difference. One belongs to a territory and the other to a state.

The tone throughout the press conference has been in the typical underplayed Russian fashion on the surface but if words are taken as a measure, then this is a serious escalation in the game. This is a setting of direction for the rest of the Ukrainian phase of this conflict.

The perfectly structured explanation of events by the Defense Minister is a clear indication of how serious the people in eastern Ukraine have taken this situation. They know exactly what they are up against and are sending a strong signal; We are prepared mentally, emotionally and physically.

They no longer represent a rag tag militia. This is a well oiled fighting machine with International volunteers joining the cause.  Though, always being the people to play by the rules, the Russians have left a door open to negotiate.

A.Zakharchenko has clearly laid down the offer when he said: “You don’t have to recognize our status, just leave us alone within our borders of Donetsk and Lugansk republics” . The Russians of course would like this matter to be resolved as soon as possible. Though, I have doubts if they really would want to. A reversal in the momentum under some peace pretext would perhaps be the biggest mistake now. This war machine has gone too far already.

The crisis in Ukraine is nothing but a joint ethnic cleansing campaign by the US and EU via their SS division in Ukraine. It really is as simple as that. To hesitate now would mean certain doom tomorrow. The EU & US cannot be trusted anymore. The only solution is total control over Ukraine; Kiev must be liberated.

The press conference served not as just a statement of events but a carefully coordinated delivery of a few key messages. Some of the main ones are:

The ferocity of the  war

A few times the subject of a futile war is brought up in the context of miners,farmers and hard working eastern Ukrainians picking up arms. It is stated that if this were to happen then Kiev stands no chance.

The casualty count of the Junta is highlighted with clear knowledge of facts and figures regarding the enemy. Mothers are warned that a “missing in action” letter is more likely a death certificate.

A rejection of the mainstream narrative and a proposition for peace

Mothers (of army conscripts) are told “…do not send your sons here. Leave us alone. Let us live free and in peace. ” and reminded that war was imposed on eastern Ukraine. A way out of the mess is even offered with a plea to “…a political conscience, a will and a courage of a real man” to stop the operation (The so-called Anti-Terrorist Operation).

The patience of the resistance is truly outstanding, even after all that has transpired they say “You don’t have to recognize our status, just leave us alone within our borders of Donetsk and Lugansk republics, and we will kiss each other goodbye.”

Symbolism & International revolutionaries in Donbas

It must be noted that the symbolism in parading the troops as they were in Moscow July 1944[1] is a very strong emotional tactic. This really in one stroke, puts things in perspective for the average babushka and beer belly joe.  It not only conveys a firm grasp of history in the resistance, but a setting of the parameters of discussion.

The narrative is being redesigned, correctly, by the resistance to highlight the core issue: a US/EU sponsored Nazi onslaught on a peaceful east Ukraine.

But this is not all, we are also told that there are now international volunteers in Ukraine. There is even mention of inviting French Navy personal to fight amongst the anti-fascist resistance. If this is verified then this would be quite serious[2].

* An Interview with French volunteers has surfaced on twitter. Thank you to @Catherina_News for highlighting this *[7]

We have already seen an Spanish freedom fighters[3] and even an Afghan fighter paying back his “dues” for the all that the Soviet Union did for him[4]. This is indeed a PR nightmare for the western press!

Who in their right mind would tune into the fruitcake pro-Nazi propaganda being blown out of every imperial mouthpiece!? But alas, that benchmark of absurdity, the BBC, is still living in fairytale land with its latest accusation of Russian soldiers invading Ukraine[5]. Planet Neptune sure is a strange place.

A rejection of Federalization

This too late to the party monotonic utterings from the protoplasmic jellies (of Boris Johnson fame) of the EU is categorically rejected with:

“Let me clarify. No federalization can be possible today. There is time for everything. We asked for the federalization 3 months ago, then we asked for a permission to hold a referendum. That time has passed, now we want to live independently.”

Formation of a State

Just when the barrage of counter-Nazi-narrative viewpoints was almost over, the resistance mentioned something that I believe conveys the steadfast resolve of the government. A government that now has a Defense Minister and Army. Notice, how the key role and instrument for protection are the major themes here.

This point is further driven home by the discussion on the death penalty and its reinstatement by the supreme council. The council in the Donetsk National Republic, that is.

This was not just a press conference but a state of affairs; a definition of boundaries, illustration of ground realities, terms of peace, confirmation of hostilities and even a small reference to the genocide for shale gas project in eastern Ukraine[6].

This is a  nation state that will most likely be a launch pad for the liberation of Kiev. The Junta and their pimps in Fashington must be convulsing right about now, foaming at the mouth to be precise.

AE


[1]POW parade July 1944 in Moscow: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JC6oJURg6Pk

[2]French in Ukraine: http://www.thelocal.fr/20140825/ukraine-french-experts-to-join-rebel-fighters

[3]Spanish fighters in Donbas: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JV_z3Pz21PI&index=7&list=LL6i5m2kR0LQt4p-3MT-3YcA

[4] Afghan freedom fighter in Donbas: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xc2KeSkl5H0&index=25&list=LL6i5m2kR0LQt4p-3MT-3YcA

[5] The BBC reporting Russians in Ukraine (again): http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-28934213

[6] Shale Gas: http://slavyangrad.org/2014/08/05/naked-goals-of-ukrainian-genocide-part-i/

[7] French volunteers in Donbas: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2qCAsyKOE9Y&feature=youtu.be

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

Quote of the hour, by Paul Craig Roberts

Sometimes a well stated, even though it might be obvious, fact can really jolt you back down to reality.

Russia is doing all it can to avoid a war which seems more and more likely with each passing month. No matter what they do they will always be at fault. It is very hard to maneuver when the opposing power wants war at all costs. It is even more difficult when the behaviour of the offending nation is ungentlemanly.

The Russians are constantly under attack, 24/7. According to the mainstream media, they can never get anything right. They are not only led by an evil demonic Putin but are so under privileged that the so-called sanctions will soon form bread queues vis a visa the 1990’s.

When heads of state compare Putin to Hitler, and others directly hold him responsible on absolutely no evidence then what can you do?[1]

Recently, President Obama said that Russia “…doesn’t make anything” and that “Immigrants aren’t rushing to Moscow in search of opportunity. ” [2] Such language is unbefitting of a head of State. This is not someone who seeks peace, he seeks war.

The United States is on a march to war by any means and it will not drag but take its willing European ruling elite to war. War after all means money and the US has promised much riches in Russia. Everyone will get a share of the spoils.

This of course is a delusional project doomed to failure.  But just because it is delusional to us does not mean it is not perfectly sane to the US and its concubines in Europe.

Paul Craig Roberts very eloquently captures the point in his latest piece on the ongoing crisis in Ukraine.

Kiev’s military assault on eastern and southern Ukraine is not going to stop because Europeans finally see the light and object.  Europeans not only stood aside for 13 years while Washington bombed civilians in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Pakistan, Yemen, and organized outside forces to attack Syrians, while isolating Iran for military attack, but also actively participated in the attacks.  Europe has stood aside while Israel has massacred Palestinians on numerous occasions. For Russia to rely on Europe’s moral conscience is to rely on something that does not exist.

(Paul Craig Roberts, The ongoing Crisis in Ukraine)[3]

The Russians should (begrudgingly), if they have not already, start their march to war, psychologically at least.

AE


[1] http://edition.cnn.com/2014/07/25/world/europe/hillary-clinton-vladimir-putin-mh17/

[2] http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/08/03/us-ukraine-crisis-obama-idUSKBN0G30Q920140803

[3] http://www.counterpunch.org/2014/08/20/the-ongoing-crisis-in-ukraine/

 

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

Erase and Rewind – The MH17 Tragedy

Erase & Rewind is the name of the game. Here is how it goes:

Commit Crime -> Blame Russia & Ignore Evidence -> Release False Evidence & Blame Russia -> Ignore Further Evidence & Erase Incident -> Commit Crime…

The Saker is playing his part in making sure that the world is not again taken for a ride. Do your part and spread the word.

Original article: The Vineyard of the Saker

AE


We cannot let MH17 be forgotten – Please help us!

Dear friends,

Those who organized the MH17 false flag have now clearly given the instruction to their propaganda machine (aka MSM) to forget about this tragedy and to pretend like it never happened.  Sure, there are a few courageous sources, such as the World Socialist Web Site, which do ask the right question Why have the media and Obama administration gone silent on MH17?, but even most of the “alternative” media has really turned the page and forgotten about MH17.

We cannot allow this.

The Russian Team and the website Polismi in Russia have jointly translated the full detailed expert analysis of the MH17 downing into Russian and they are now asking for our – *your* – help in disseminating it in the Russian media worldwide and with all our – *your* – Russian-speaking friends, relatives and colleagues.   Here is their appeal:

Дорогие друзья,

Мы предлагаем вашему вниманию экспертный анализ крушения рейса МН17 Малазийской авиакомпании, который был впервые опубликован на сайте “The Vineyard of the Saker”. Команда переводчиков русской версии этого сайта в сотрудничестве с командой сайта http://polismi.ru/o-proekte.html сделали перевод этого важного документа.

Любые упоминания о расследовании сбитого авиалайнера исчезли со страниц и эфиров Западных СМИ. Он выполнил свою трагическую роль. Как сказал Шиллер в свой знаменитой пьесе: «Мавр сделал свое дело, мавр должен уйти». 298 человек одним росчерком пера были принесены в жертву хладнокровному и расчётливому плану по провокации России. Этот план не удался, но его организаторы продолжают, как ни в чём не бывало, оркестрировать свой гнусный и подлый террор. И не зря своим орудием они выбрали тех, у кого нет никаких зачатков морали, совести, человечности. Эти нелюди сегодня правят Украиной. Они – вампиры, высасывающие не только её живую кровь, но и её душу, чувства и сознание. Что для них какой-то самолёт? У их заморских хозяев в заложниках весь мир. И только родные, близкие и друзья погибших будут до конца дней оплакивать боль своих потерь.

Но те из нас, кто не согласен жить в информационной матрице, делают всё возможное, чтобы прорвать эту блокаду ненависти и лжи. Сегодня мы хотим распространить этот анализ, написанный экспертом по расследованию аварий, как можно большему количеству русскоговорящих людей, особенно на Украине. Возможно, мы никогда не узнаем всей правды об этой трагедии. К сожалению, это уже было не раз. Но тем не менее, этот документ приводит веские и взвешенные аргументы думающим и критически мыслящим людям. Как капля воды точит камень, так и каждая крупинка правды помогает пробивать толстую броню Зла.

Русская команда “Bиноградника Балобана”

The full document in Russian is available here:

http://www.vineyardsaker.ru/?p=749

I ask you to do everything you can to share this document as widely as possible.   One of the most disgusting and outrageous things about this false flag massacre is that most of our elites know what truly happened, but that they apparently have all agreed to cover it up, each one for their own reasons.  We cannot allow that to happen and we have to continue to demand answers and full access to all the data, including the recordings of the conversations between MH17 and the Kiev ATC, all the flight data recorders, and all the signal and radar data held by Russia, the USA, NATO, and the junta in Kiev.

Please join us in demanding that the full truth be told about the murder of the people of MH17.

Send the link above, along with this appeal, to all your Russian speaking friends, post it on your blogs, websites, Twitter and Facebook pages, share it on mailing lists, send it to your local Russian newspaper or radio station, etc.   We need maximal exposure and visibility to force those in power to react.

Many thanks,

The Saker

PS: a new, updated, version of the video analysis made by John Martin about MH17 which I had posted here is now available here: http://youtu.be/czqmeMhWyFo make sure to also check it out!

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

Ukraine’s descent into chaos and the sanction recoil

Ukraine is, slowly but surely, descending into chaos. Chaos that it might not recover from. The east is already lost. It matters not if the resistance has a tactical victory or loss on any given day. What matters is that they will not rest until they are in Kiev.

There was a chance to remain united and perhaps fulfil that Ukrainian imported myth of “territorial integrity” even (minus Crimea) until even a few months ago. But that ship has sailed.

Mayor Klitschko to the rescue

I find it especially amusing when the privileged dish out advice to the ones who suffer from their decisions. This is a hallmark of neoliberalism; Where the tormentor is given the role of the saviour. Only pure idiocy can emerge as advice, and so it was when the government issued guidelines on how to survive the winter in Ukraine.

The central heating will be down during this period of “glorious resistance” in an artificial war created by oligarchs to get richer at the expense of the population. Glory indeed. And so it goes, Klitschko advises[1]:

-The first recommendation is to insulate windows and doors
– Stock up on warm clothing made of natural fabrics, boots and hats
– Paint the central heating in a red or brown color to enhance their heat. (No, this is not a joke)
– Use the winter balcony instead of the refrigerator

Dissent in Western Ukraine

With tens of thousands of troops deployed in the east and fierce battles raging, the growing dissent in other regions is not getting the attention it will probably command in the near future.

As the state disintegrates so does the fabric that holds together a country like Ukraine, the fabric of fear. Fear is how Ukraine is ruled today and not everyone is afraid.

The Zakarpattia Oblast is a region that has changed hands several times in its history during the 20th century. The contiguous cross-border area of Poland, Slovakia and Hungary in western Ukraine has been campaigning for federal status and had asked Russia, US and EU to recognize this.

Of course, the only solution in town is force. Kiev has dispatched 1500 soldiers to Mukachevko  and suspected “separatists” have been arrested in Zhitomir.[2]

This is of course not all, there is a lot more going on in western Ukraine. From public protests at the mounting death toll to the conscription for the Nazi-Choco-Army.

Lets make this more fun

Since things are going so well for the Junta, they have decided to take more proactive measures bordering on the clinically insane variety.

The National Guard (read: Nazis) will now be given control of “Nuclear Material” such as nuclear fuel and radioactive waste. [3]

The sanction recoil

As time pases, the voices grow louder. Everyday there is a new report and statement from disgruntled states forced to bite the bullet because of Europe’s total subservience to the Empire.

Serbia

Serbia is being rewarded and could see a doubling of exports to Russia. In fact, Serbia is so excited of this prospect that it has been working overtime to stop sanction dodgers.[4]

EU Sanction Dodging

Constant attempts to bypass sanctions are becoming more common place now with Belarus being used as a re-exporter. Of course, these pathetic attempts are being blocked and a warning has already been issued to Belarus[5].

The Poles have approached Brussels along with other EU countries asking for compensation[6]. This would be fine if the pretend world the EU lives in (at least on the mainstream media) was real. In the real world, the EU has set aside a meagre €125 million when the compensation bills will be in the billions[7].

Here is a snapshot of the situation:

Top suppliers from the import ban list.
Top suppliers from the import ban list.

With Spain losing €337 , Italy €1bn and Poland €1.5bn as just a subset example, things will begin to heat up. The Poles are already pushing for an escalation to the WTO. Something that no one wants, an escalation could be even more costly.

Switzerland has decided to do what it does best, profit from the quarrels of those idiots in the EU. It has rejected appeals of being a  conduit to allow the EU to dodge sanctions[8].  Actually, when is the last time you read about the EU dodging sanctions? A twist of fate.

Bulgaria is the only remaining weak link in the Russian South Stream project, which has once again been halted[9]. No doubt under US advice, always ready to help out their minions shoot themselves in the foot. A trademark US speciality: Making your “friends” screw themselves.

In the words of Boris Johnson “the great supine invertebrate protoplasmic jellies” are vibrating under pressure.

Russian diplomacy 

Russia readjusting the sanctions to allow speciality food products is an excellent move to once again let the idiots in Europe know that the pain can go away, just like that. If they play ball.[10]

Trade deals are being struck everywhere on the map, and Russia & China are experiencing an unexpected romance. Long delayed opportunities are being picked up and progress being made. Take Mongolia for example, have you heard much about it? Exactly. It has for decades been unsuccessfully trying to court western capital but is now turning to Russia and China. The region has an excellent opportunity at hand and its neighbors are coming bearing gifts. The Chinese and Russian presidents are both due to visit soon[11].

And just if you forgot, the overall picture is looking even more favorable in the court of public opinion. The resistance is viewed favorably the world over, except in the “International Community” of the decaying old world order[12].

Green areas represent favorable media coverage.
Green areas represent favorable media coverage of Novorossiya .

AE


[1] http://www.rg.ru/2014/08/18/ukraina-site-anons.html

[2]http://nedelya-ua.com/articles/1500-ukrainskih-voennyh-pribyli-v-podkarpatskuyu-rus-video

[3] http://www.vesti.ru/doc.html?id=1904436&tid=105474

[4] http://en.ria.ru/business/20140820/192174652/Serbia-Fighting-Against-Re-Export-of-Banned-Produce-to-Russia.html

[5] http://rt.com/business/181252-rosselhoznadzor-reexport-products-russia/

[6] http://rt.com/business/181468-poland-wto-complaint-official-russia/

[7] http://rt.com/business/181036-europe-food-russia-sanctions/

[8] http://rt.com/business/181540-switzerland-rejects-russia-embargo/

[9] http://rt.com/business/181136-bulgaria-halts-south-stream/

[10] http://rt.com/business/181636-russia-food-ban-amendments/

[11] http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-08-20/mongolia-seeks-economic-lifeline-with-pivot-to-china-russia.html

[12] http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=8d4_1408438170

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

The Irrational Player

There has been a lot of speculation about the course of the resistance in Ukraine. There were rumours of Strelkov being wounded, removed and even being dead. Then there were other permutations in the hierarchy which might still continue. Who knows?

Is Putin firmly in control? I doubt it. Are the self-interested oligarchs in control?I doubt it. Does anyone have the sovereign interest of the Russian people at heart? Maybe Putin. Are the rebels winning or are they in the process of being sold out? I do not know.

The resistance as a whole, despite the brave men down in the trenches, is fragmented.The aggressor is not.

The United States is determined, persistent and brutal in its pursuit of total domination. Anyone and anything is expandable. What we see in Ukraine are just the opening moves of the war being unleashed. The US is wounded, it is tired,it is exhausted and it can see its demise. It is weak. That is exactly why it is going bezerk on the global stage.

Sometimes the cold hard truth puts things in perspective. Here is former Assistant Secretary of Treasury Paul Craig Roberts on the nuclear war situation:

Does that sound like a rational player? I am afraid the nightmare scenario The Saker pondered might actually be a statistical double digit probability.

Now, consider the measured and limited Russian sectoral sanctions in response to aggressive US/EU sanctions against her. The western sanctions are based on absolutely nothing.  And despite that, Russia, a capable nuclear armed world power, is still trying hard to de escalate the situation. It is desperately trying to send a signal, a warning or hell even a bloody plea for some sanity to prevail.

The Russian Sanctions are very carefully designed, as Paul Craig Roberts puts it: “The only way Washington can hurt Russia is by hurting Europe”.

If things could not get worse, here is a Ukrainian MP fostering those cherished European values:

This is far from over. It has merely begun.

AE

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

A Franco-Russian Union

The emergence of such initiatives is always a good sign even if it is a little late to the game. I would say that crisis creates change and as such nature has its own way. A number of viewpoints are expressed below both by the authors and our guest editor. Our editor has been most generous in helping publish this piece, bringing in his vast knowledge in Soviet studies and an astute command of the complex Russian perspective.

I would also like to thank the great effort by our translators without whom this would not be possible.

My own views centre more around the need to put a human element in discourse. The heart and mind go hand in hand and as such I am always skeptical when one is ignored.  I believe this proposal,fundamentally, has both heart and mind in it.

Written by: Jean-Paul Baquiast and Jean-Claude Emperuer
Originally published by: The French Saker
Translated by: Elena L. & Alice S.
Editor: Rufus Magister

AE


It was decided to write this text, which is still under discussion, on behalf of the editorial committee of “Solidarity of Europe”.  It is signed by Jean-Paul Baquiast and Jean-Claude Emperuer (in alphabetical order).[1]

Introduction

We have previously shown[2] that if Europe does not free itself from more than sixty years of domination by the US, it will forever remain a simple tool, continually exploited for their main project, which is the destruction of Russia.  Liberation from this suzerainty should bring Europe closer to the geopolitical formation of the BRICS countries[3], which is still under construction.  Subsequently, Europe and the BRICS [together] will become a force capable of resisting American power, which long remain stronger than the European or the BRICS individually. On this basis, we can draw two conclusions:

* Europe is too diverse and too riddled with American influence for anyone to suppose that it can solidly and quickly enough join, or at least form a strategic partnership with, the BRICS countries. Acting individually, i.e. overcoming the diplomatic limitations dictated by the European Union, European countries would have to take the initiative and negotiate on their own behalf.

* TheBRICS countriesare still toodifferent from,and some of themare quite distantfrom, Europe, which will makecomprehensive negotiationswith themdifficultin the near future; however, incertain circumstances,such would still be possible. The Europeansshould find new preferred [“privliegirovannykh” literally privileged] partners[4]who sharewith themas many common goals as possible.

To meet thisdual requirementin the construction ofa broad alliancebetween Europe andthe BRICS, we propose to consider as the first and necessary step a strategic alliance between France and Russia.  Since the era of Catherine the Great, and up to the Great Patriotic War[5], France and Russia — even without any shared land borders — had much in common and very similar interests. Even in the daysof Stalin’s dictatorship, the two nations did not confront each other.  Charles de Gaullewas the first head of state to encourage closer ties with Russia.

From the outset,we note thatsuch a planned alliance withRussiacould todaybe extendedto otherEuropean countries, primarily to Germany, Spainand Italy.  In each specific case, it is worth noting that having stronger ties with Russia would be beneficial even today, and that may be of further interest to these countries in the future, but such a discussion is beyond the scope of this article.

As for France, you will recall that when Czar Alexander’s troops briefly occupied Paris, after the fall of Napoleon the First, they conducted themselves almost perfectly.  Recall also that the Franco-Russian Alliance, concluded on the eve of the World War [“mirovoi voini,” the First World War], was very popular in both countries.[6]  The continued success of the eponymous dessert in France[7] is no accident.  All this testifies to the profound harmony between the two societies, which is expressed in literature and art, technology and science…

But on what basis should a Franco-Russian alliance be created today, which could become the model for the union of Europe and the BRICS?

A Geopolitical Project

The project should be primarily geopolitical.  This term is used to designate a union or a political rapprochement between two countries that share a common geographic area and broad strategic objectives.

Even in times of global trade, it is important to have common interests.  Concerning France and Russia,at first glance it is not that clear that they share a geographic space.  If we take a closer look at the concept, however, it becomes quite apparent.  There are plenty of rail, sea and air connections, and they can be expanded at a very low cost.  The similarity of the different parts of the space, which Charles de Gaulle called “Europe from the Atlantic to the Urals and beyond”, is undeniable.  Today, there are other states between France and Russia, but there is no reason to think that they, or at least their population, would oppose a rapprochement between the two sides of the Union, which could be useful to all of them.  In any case, it would only mean bringing the Enlightenment, the French Revolution, back to Europe.

 A Plan Based on Reciprocal Scarcities

The primary basis is a complementarity of resources and a commitment mutual development.

The geographic factor: Through France,Russia will gain access to the seas, which today are still very difficult for her to reach– the Atlantic Ocean, the western part of the Mediterranean Sea, as well as all the maritime areas belonging to France through her overseas possessions(a unique situation in the world). France, in turn, would gain access to the polar regions and Siberia which, if they are properly managed, will become more and more valuable(taking into account global warming).

The economic factor: France is very well developed industrially and could help Russia in the development of corresponding industries, and in return receive Russian expertise and resources, including in technology, energy, as well as mining — rich rare-earth metals.  In the important area of research and development, we note the possibility of creating programs related to clean energy, all NBIC technologies(nano-, bio-, information and cognitive technologies), as well as space and military technologies.

Finally,the political and diplomatic factors: Inter-amplification[8] is already obvious.In particular, the example of the struggle against radical Islamic movements which are equally threatening in Russia and in Europe, as they are in the Middle East. Now they are even spreading to the countries of southern Africa.  Even if France and Russia cope with this problem in different ways, cooperation between them is necessary.  And it would be very helpful if France would cease to consider itself obliged to obediently follow the intricacies of American policies: France and Russia together could then have a substantial place in the major negotiations and the conflicts taking place beyond their borders: in Iran, Iraq, Syria, the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the Kurdish question, etc.  The question of differences in their approach to political democracy, civil liberties and morality should not be an obstacle to cooperation.  First,over time these differences will diminish, and second, each of the partners must demonstrate its willingness to let the other bear its share of responsibility for societal choices– without trying to change them.

A gradual process

We should not hide the fact that with regard to a Franco-Russian alliance, there are some differences of opinion, especially in France.  Political movements and politicians who are convinced that it is necessary would do well to propose a gradual approach, calculated to take hold over a longer period.  But this does not rule out making some urgent, even if only symbolic, decisions.  Note that if France, bowing to orders from the US, decides not to provide Russia with what, by rights, belongs to her – in this case, two “Mistral” class vessels, designed at Saint-Nazaire[9] — it will be a significant obstacle to hopes for cooperation between the two countries.  Conversely,if France and Russia were to deepen their already very fruitful cooperation in space, they could more rapidly develop the launchers, manned modules and ground stations needed to expand cooperation in space research, and exploration of the Moon, of the moons of Mars,and Mars itself.  The areas showing the most urgent needs and opportunities for cooperation are numerous, including medicine, robotics, machine translation of languages, social sciences, and politics.

Conclusion

As for us  — an Association of those who are confident that such a Franco-Russian alliance is needed — we will expand our activities in this area and will seek to establish a virtual dialogue with other organizations playing a similar role,in France,in Europe, and in Russia,to bring about profound changes in public opinion.


Editor’s comments

As a former doctoral student in Soviet History, permit me a few observations.

As I find common with technologists, the statement is a compound of astute naiveté.

Baquiast and Emperuer correctly note the long and often cordial relations between the Third Republic and Imperial Russia, and later between the Fifth Republic under De Gaulle and the Soviet Union.  France notably absented itself, until fairly recently, from the NATO military command structure.

More recently, however, under Sarkozy and Hollande, France seems to be opting for its own version of the Anglo-American “Special Relationship,” (or as Tony Blair was known, “America’s lap dog;” please insert your favorite “French Poodle” witticism here).  She certainly views her former possessions in Africa, and the continent in general, as within her sphere of influence under subcontract to the United States.  It is noteworthy that France was a critical proponent of the disastrous “humanitarian interventions” in Libya and Syria.

An aside – why is it that self-serving American “humanitarian interventions” are just and to be accepted uncritically?  How is it that similar and far more genuine Russian solicitude for its own people (either in strict ethnic or broader linguistic terms) is somehow a violation of international law?  America hypocritically applies its own loose and indeed criminal version of international law to itself and its friends, while holding everyone else to the strictest of standards.  Like my fellow readers of VS, I anxiously await the outcome of the Russian aid mission.

I cannot speak to the viability of the rail, road, and air links between the two.  Are they sufficient for the proposed traffic from the Volga to the Atlantic?  Would their expansion be easy and/or cost effective?  I see it as unlikely, however, that the populations of states such as Germany and Poland, under the anti-democratic structure of the so-called European “Union” or “Community,” can effectively change the policies dictated to Brussels by Washington.  Perhaps a transport version of the Southern Stream is possible, but I would have greater doubts as to the capacity and scalability.

I would agree, however, that any loosening of the bonds would likely be best achieved on the national level, hopefully as a precursor to a true democratization of the European Union as a whole.  Such a version would include, rather than exclude, the Russian Federation.  Perhaps mutual interests and complementary resources will prevail.  To do so, political action by the masses, rather than techno-utopianism, is needed.


[1]  Biographic note: Jean-Paul Baquiast was formerly a senior technologist in the French government.  He founded the website “Admiroutes” (www.admiroutes.asso.fr), which his webpage describes as “an unofficial and user-friendly resource for the Internet based modernisation of public services….”  He also edits the internet magazine “Automates Intelligents.”  His essay on “Europe paneuropéenne superpuissance” was published by Editions Automates Intelligents along with co-author Jean-Claude Emperuer’s “Essai suivi de Indépendance de l’Europe et technologies de souveraineté” in April 2003.  From http://www.jean-paul-baquiast.fr/

[2] See, in French “Europe is the epicenter of destructive conflict”, http://www.europesolidaire.eu/article.php?article_id=1433&r_id=)

[3]  Brazil, Russia, India, China & South Africa, for those few who may be unfamiliar with the term.

[4]  This is to me suggestive of the diplomatic term “most favored nation,” a type of trade-tariff relationship.  Here and throughout the rendering of the Russian text is in the gender and case used in the document.

[5]  This is the common rendering of “Velikoi Otechestvennoi voini” literally the Great Fatherland War, the Soviet and later Russian styling of the Second World War II.

[6] This treaty, signed in 1892, united the Third Republic with Czarist Russia against their mutual rival, the rising German Empire.  It was a critical step toward the First World War.

[7] I believe they are referring to the napoleon.  According to Wikipedia, as the “mille feuilles” the pastry predates the First Empire, but was refined by the French chef Marie-Antoine Carême (1784–1833).  It had no direct connection to Bonaparte.  Appearing in Russia early in the 1800’s, it gained especial popularity during the centenary of Borodino and  subsequently became a staple of Soviet cuisine.  The article goes onto describe variations throughout the world.  Carême also created the Charlotte russe, which Wikipedia describes as “a dessert invented by who named it in honor of his former employer George IV’s only child, Princess Charlotte, and his current, Russian employer Czar Alexander…. It is a cold dessert of Bavarian cream set in a mold lined with ladyfingers.”

[8]  “vzaimodopolnyaetmost’” – This seems to be a neologism, perhaps by the authors.

[9]  It seems at this time that Hollande government, for commercial reasons, will permit delivery of the two ships, “Vladivostok” and “Sevastapol.”  They are helicopter and amphibious assault carriers, with command and control capabilities.  The French state-owned company DCNS designed the vessels, three of which France presently deploys.  They were built at the Chantier de Atlantique at Saint-Nazaire.  Now owned by STX Shipbuilding of Korea with a French government minority stake, this yard built such historic vessels as the liners “Normandie” and “France.”  See Wikipedia and the websites of the companies involved.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn