Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
October 21, 2014

Radek Sikorski Throws Eggs At Ben Judah And Blake Hounshell - Hits Faces

Yesterday Politico promoted a story about "Putin's Coup written by junior neocon Ben Judah. The lede:

The war in Ukraine is no longer only about Ukraine. The conflict has transformed Russia. This increasingly is what European leaders and diplomats believe: that Vladimir Putin and his security establishment have used the fog of war in Ukraine to shroud the final establishment of his brittle imperialist dictatorship in Moscow.

Among those who believe that this is happening, and that Europe will be facing down a more menacing Russia for a long time to come, is Radek Sikorski, who was Poland’s foreign minister from 2007 until September.

Anything that starts off by calling the elected government of the Russian Federation an "imperialist dictatorship" is obviously rubbish.

But the hard right-wing Radek Sikorski, who ones had a U.S. British passport and is married to the neocon Washington Post columnist Anne Appelbaum, always makes some funny jokes, like identifying Obama's grandfather as a cannibal, so I read on.

And I was right, there were some really funny lines in there:

Russia has attempted to involve Poland in the invasion of Ukraine, just as if it were a post-modern re-run of the historic partitions of Poland. “He wanted us to become participants in this partition of Ukraine,” says Sikorski. “Putin wants Poland to commit troops to Ukraine. These were the signals they sent us. … We have known how they think for years. We have known this is what they think for years. This was one of the first things that Putin said to my prime minister, Donald Tusk, [soon to be President of the European Council] when he visited Moscow. He went on to say Ukraine is an artificial country and that Lwow is a Polish city and why don’t we just sort it out together. Luckily Tusk didn’t answer. He knew he was being recorded.”

So Russia was planning, in 2008, to divide Ukraine between Poland and itself? Why the hell should or would Russia ever take up such a burden? Why should it create a mess in Eastern Europe which would be against all its interests? Anyone who has intelligently watched Putin and Russian politics would immediately recognize that Sikorski's claim is obviously false. Putin does realpolitik, always and ever. He reacts when Russia gets attacked, by Georgia's artillery on Russian peacekeepers or by a U.S. plotted neonazi coup in Kiev, but he is certainly not one who will risk anything significant for some lunatic imperial phantasy.

Whoever came up with that funny joke must have had way too many drinks. And the reporter who believed it and the editor who published it must have way too few braincells.

Reuters though thought differently, or just for fun wanted to stir the caldron, and distributed the nonsense on its wire.

Following that wire, Russia characterized the claim as "a fable" and Sikorski was pressed to take it back. That did not go well either:

In a news conference on Tuesday, Sikorski was vague about whether he made those exact remarks to Politico Magazine and told journalists to refer to another interview he gave to a Polish media website. He said there that he didn't hear Putin's words firsthand, but stressed that they were treated in 2008 as "surrealistic" or a joke.

Later in the day, he held a second news conference where he said his memory had failed him in the interview with Politico Magazine and that the bilateral meeting between Tusk and Putin didn't take place in Moscow, as he said earlier, but at the NATO summit in Bucharest in April 2008.

So Sikorski said:

  • "Putin suggested to Tusk to divide Ukraine between themselves."
  • "Putin suggested to Tusk to divide Ukraine between themselves, but it was a joke."
  • "Putin suggested to Tusk to divide Ukraine between themselves, but I wasn't present at the conservation."
  • "No such conservation took place and I certainly was not present when it happened."

Sikorski even got the place of Putin-Tusk meeting wrong. The Politico author and editors, Blake Hounshell in this case, obviously did not even do a basic fact-checking of their sources claims.

Sikorski is nuts. Everyone in Europe knows this and that is exactly the reason why he was recently fired as Foreign Minister of Poland and reassigned to play Speaker of Parliament where one had hoped that he would produce less nonsense. As that reassignment did not help it is now really time to send him off to the American Enterprise Institute or some other asylum for neoconned lunatics. His boss seems to agree:

Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz, who's in the same party as Sikorski, criticized him for dodging reporters' questions on the issue at the first conference. Political opponents want him fired, saying there is no room in politics for what they called irresponsibility.

Kopacz said she expected Sikorski to directly answer reporters' questions.

"I will not tolerate this kind of behavior. I will not tolerate this kind of standards that Speaker Sikorski tried to present at today's (news) conference," Kopacz said.

Note to reporters and editors: Publishing such nonsense like Sikorski's obviously rubbish claims is egg on your faces. Lots of it.

Posted by b on October 21, 2014 at 19:02 UTC | Permalink


.. who once had a U.S. passport.

He held a British passport, worked as a "roving reporter" for National Reniew in Angola on the UNITA project with neocons like Condi Rice, Abramoff and Gingrich; witnessed the first Stinger missiles handed to mujihadeen in Tora Bora; worked for AEI and the Atlantic Initiative; pushed the Orange Revolution in Ukraine, was defense minister and FM in Poland and is married to Anne Applebaum.

National Review reporter Sikorski as witness to US Congress: The Mystique of Savimbi | Oct. 12, 1989 |
Radek Sikorski Returns to Ukraine's Headlines: Putin's Coup

Posted by: Oui | Oct 21 2014 19:38 utc | 1

this guy should get a gig working with the usa state dept.. oh wait - i guess he indirectly does in a weird sort of way thru his bozo propagandist wife annie applepants..great couple.. i take it they live in the usa, right?

Posted by: james | Oct 21 2014 19:59 utc | 2

We don't have Faux News, however the public news broadcast treats the Dutch with "neutral" observers on Ukraine and Putin's Russia with Ben Judah and Anne Applebaum.

Posted by: Oui | Oct 21 2014 20:00 utc | 3

It's sad to think that the great experiment in democracy that is the US has devolved into 'making it up as we go along'' and a core belief in ignorance. The US at it's inception was bankrolled by Russian trade and diplomacy, so I guess it would be fitting if it be undermined by the same. With senility spreading among even the junior elite quicker than Ebola, the words 'We will bury you' are looking more prescient by the day.

Posted by: Nana2007 | Oct 21 2014 20:09 utc | 4

Here he is..

Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 21 2014 20:15 utc | 5

The initial claim goes out, is picked up on the wire, and after that all the retractions and controversy are quickly lost in the shuffle as more scurrilous claims are stuffed into the slobbering maw of gullible "news" consumers. This is how the game is played, and it is cynical and insults the intelligence of anyone able to recall what was said or done last week, but it reminds me of people who drive while their attention is focused on their ongoing cellphone conversation: they barely know what's going on around them, and forget about what they've driven past.

Posted by: Hugo First | Oct 21 2014 20:24 utc | 6

It is an old idea - last being floated in March

Reuters) - A prominent Russian politician has proposed dividing Ukraine along the lines of an infamous Nazi-Soviet pact and suggested that regions in Western Ukraine hold referendums on breaking away from Kiev.

In a letter sent to the governments of Poland, Romania and Hungary, Vladimir Zhirinovsky also suggested those countries hold referendums on incorporating the regions into their territory.

Zhirinovsky, whose nationalist Liberal Democratic party largely backs President Vladimir Putin in the Russian parliament, sent the letter as Russia annexed the Crimea region of southern Ukraine last week.

He is deputy speaker at the Duma and his party holds a minority in the parliament. But his ideas and language resonate with a large part of the Russian population and the Kremlin's increasingly pro-nationalist rhetoric.

His letter, seen by Reuters, suggested Poland, Hungary and Romania, who are now in the European Union, might wish to take back regions which he said were in the past their territories.

The regions were incorporated into Ukraine when it was part of the Soviet Union at the end of World War Two and featured in a secret annex of the 1939 Molotov-Ribbentrop pact under which the Soviet and Nazi German foreign ministers carved up the area.

The politics of this are beyond my understanding. But Reuters considering it news in March - and straining the news to implicate Putin - presumably was supposed to embarrass Germany by referencing the Hitler Stalin pact, which actually was something completely different.

Sikorski spreading the rumour is crazy. I suspect a lot of people threaten to wash dirty linen just now when Europe is supposed to pay for Ukraine's gas and Poland's activities in Ukraine could be part of it.

I guess it is due to the negotiations process. Ukraine's position does not look good. Talking of the Polish partition does nothing to improve it.

There seems a lot of hard bargaining going on - the United States suddenly sanction Hungarian.

Posted by: somebody | Oct 21 2014 20:28 utc | 7

"In general this information looks like total tripe.” --Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov

As a vegetarian I wasn't familiar with tripe so I looked it up. Tripe is a type of edible offal from the stomachs of various farm animals. I guess Russians don't go for it, but many other people do. There are many tripe dishes including--

--Andouille — French poached, boiled and smoked cold tripe sausage
--Breakfast Sausages — Most commercially produced sausages in the United States contain pork and beef tripe as filler
--Butifarra — Catalonian sausage
--Fileki or špek-fileki — Croatian tripe soup.
--Haggis — Scottish traditional dish made of a sheep's stomach stuffed with oatmeal and the minced heart, liver and lungs of a sheep.
--Menudo — Mexican tripe and hominy stew
--Saure Kutteln — from south Germany, made with beef tripe and vinegar or wine

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 21 2014 20:40 utc | 8

@somebody #7
...Reuters considering it news in March...

"News" ain't what it used to be, if it ever was. Only a small part of Reuters is news, most of it is financials. Same with Bloomberg and Wall Street Journal, etc. (Reuters and Bloomberg are particularly helpful in promoting stock activity when the place the ticker symbol after the corporate name in "news" articles.)

wiki--Reuters Group plc was a British multinational media and financial information company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It merged with The Thomson Corporation in 2008, forming Thomson Reuters. Reuters Group was best known for the Reuters news agency, which was the original business of the company. By the time of its merger with Thomson the bulk of Reuters Group's revenues came from the provision of financial market data, with news reporting comprising less than 10% of its turnover.

Look at the Reuters news header to get an idea of Reuters' priorities:
home-business-markets-world-politics etc
So what was the financial benefit to Reuters with this bogus "news?" I don't know, but I bet they knew.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 21 2014 20:52 utc | 9

Kopacz is not his boss. Actually the Speaker of Parliament is a higher rank than Prime Minister, or at least parallel in constitutional hierarchy. She might be considered his boss within the party but still she's not the one who decides there.

Anyway, being Polish, I'm happy that this utter idiot is not representing my country abroad anymore. I hope after this incident he will be flushed down the toilet. Pity that in politics shit often resurfaces.

Posted by: Michal | Oct 21 2014 20:56 utc | 10

Sikorski maybe a loose cannon, but isn't some partition of the Ukraine an inevitabilty? Eastern Ukraine has no reason to ever trust the coup government again, and reconciliation doesn't seem to be an option anymore. Neither the EU nor Russia wants the responsibility of propping up the rapidly failing state (to say nothing of the gas bill owed Russia).

Regardless, the idea that Russia would want a new border region full of hostile Ukrainians inside a hostile, NATO member Poland seems a touch... absurd. Then again, what's the need for logic when dredging up bad memories of WW2?

Posted by: Almand | Oct 21 2014 20:57 utc | 11

When the US Nazi puppet in Kiev starts shit again, maybe we can look forward to Russia cutting off the Ukraine altogether from the Black Sea, leaving an angry little rump state they can call Banderastan, full of goose-stepping haters who say Christ's mother was a Ukrainian.

Posted by: Farflungstar | Oct 21 2014 21:20 utc | 12

Wasn't this why he got fired as an FM ... some choice words ab Poland's relationship with the US? (not that they're not inaccurate!)

Posted by: GoraDiva | Oct 21 2014 22:09 utc | 13

@Farflungstar #12
maybe we can look forward to Russia cutting off the Ukraine altogether from the Black Sea

The Montreux Convention gives Turkey full control over the Straits and guarantees the free passage of civilian vessels in peacetime. It restricts the passage of naval ships not belonging to Black Sea states. -wiki

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 21 2014 22:19 utc | 14

In their book " Hidden History, the secret origins of the first world war", Docherty and Macgregor pull back the curtain on the real machinations that drove the world to conflict. A British capitalist cabal they call the "secret elite" led by Cecil Rhodes and Natty Rothchild, feared that a rising Germany threatened the British Empire and decided on war to eliminate the threat. By using loyal wealthy capitalists and bought and vested politicians, they co-opted newspaper owners and editors, and high universities like Oxford, and Balliol, and successfully demonized Germany to the point where the English people became hysterical. They then procured secret alliances with France, Belgium, and Russia,encircling Germany, and then proceeded to ignite the conflagration.
It is becoming eerily obvious that history is about to repeat itself only with a different Anglo-Saxon empire driving the events. The US empire fears that an emerging Russia, and multi-polar world in general is a direct threat to it's goal of "full spectrum dominance", and is prepared to go to war to destroy the threat. All the ridiculous stories of so called Russian aggression and revanchist actions are setting the stage. I am deathly afraid of where this is going. The empire's leadership is totally degenerate without ethics or morals, and the Sampson option could easily become the it's only option.

Posted by: Kraken | Oct 21 2014 22:52 utc | 15

@15 kraken

The leaders of the empire have two options.

Option 1: Get the hell out of the way of the new emerging multi polar globe by entering a peaceful retirement.

Option 2: Be forced out of the way of the new emerging multi polar globe via a non-peaceful retirement.

Posted by: really | Oct 21 2014 23:13 utc | 16

Referring to the Putin led government as his brittle imperialist dictatorship in Moscow. is utterly absurd. Putin's approval rating in Russia hovers around 80%. There is not a western president with approvals this high. The reason is not just due to the Russian people rallying behind Putin in the face of western aggression. It is also do to the fact that the Russian economy has improved tremendously after the Yeltsin fiasco time. Before the last election the anti-Putin forces rally 25,000 people to demonstrate against his rule in Moscow. This last summer they attempted an "antiwar" rally and attracted only about 2000. This was one of those demonstrations whose audience was the western press. I found it most amusing that one of the more articulate (in English) demonstrators was carrying the Ukrainian flag -- reporters were most attracted to him.

Western propagandists have been writing these stories for at least 7 years now that Putin's hold on power is very tentative and the Russian people are ready to rise up in rebellion. This fool Judah has no idea at all what is going on in Russia and I would suspect neither does Kerry and Obama and their advisers.

Posted by: ToivoS | Oct 21 2014 23:44 utc | 17

@16 Really
I would love it to be option 1. But if it's option 2 I know what side I'll be on.

Posted by: Kraken | Oct 21 2014 23:55 utc | 18

@ Kraken #15
The US, primarily President Wilson, also had a big role in demonizing Germany for WWI, which wasn't easy because the US had many German immigrants. Walter Karp's "The Politics of War" is a good source, and he also covers McKinley who preceded Wilson with a similar strategy against Spain in 1898.

Ironically the current conspiracy of the West against Russia might break down when (if) Germany comes to her senses. The new axis might be China-Russia-Germany, against a declining West. Russia will not stand alone.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 22 2014 0:00 utc | 19

@19 Don B
I agree that Germany is the key, but I'm not sure they will come to their senses. It seems obvious that a better future for them lies to the east, but so far they've sure acted like a US colony. It's almost surreal that Europe appears willing to commit economic suicide at the behest of the US, but their leadership is showing to be every bit as corrupt as the America's.

Posted by: Kraken | Oct 22 2014 0:14 utc | 20

@Don Bacon, no. 8

At least in the US, tripe is beef intestines, and chitterlings are pork intestines.

Menudo is delicious as is andouille, though being from Louisiana and making my own andouille on occasion, I have never heard of tripe being used. It is always made with pork not beef, usually pork shoulder.

Posted by: sleepy | Oct 22 2014 0:18 utc | 21

Boundaries are subject to revision. Sykes-Picot was the WW1 victors revision of the ME though mainly based upon Ottoman administrative divisions that were in place.
Boundaries moved east and west during and after WW1 and similarly WW2.
The USSR became disunited when "communism" became discredited.
NATO is sort of a meta organizing concept since it organizes the various national military around a certain set of goals and military spending can become a huge proportion of national production.

Posted by: Jay M | Oct 22 2014 0:39 utc | 22

I wonder if POLITICO is going to address the issues with Sikorski and his made up stories that were published there. Anybody heard from Ben Judah after Sikorski revealed that he lied to POLITICO?

Posted by: Jola | Oct 22 2014 1:37 utc | 23

Ben Judah's twitter is here if you have the stomach for tripe.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 22 2014 2:10 utc | 24

I would think that Sikorski was fired (or re-assigned) for his comment about 'giving the US a blow job', earlier this year. He was known as American paratrooper in Polish government and this comment must have ended the American support for him. SOmebody else is getting the money now.

Posted by: Lech | Oct 22 2014 2:55 utc | 25

Menudo is also reputed to cure a hangover, although I have no firsthand experience in this matter. Cajun Andouille is good, but I would not put anything past a Cajun. In other words, it might taste great but you wouldn't want to see it being made.

Posted by: Jim T | Oct 22 2014 3:50 utc | 26

Radek has terrible timing. The media in PL is already starting to turning against Ukraine. It began with Porky's request for "free coal" to help Ukie industry. If only Radek had made his ridiculous claims 2or 3 months ago, he would be lauded as hero now.

Posted by: Thumper | Oct 22 2014 6:07 utc | 27

According to he now changed his view again - pretty much saying he have no evidence at all for what hes been saying, I dont think sikorski is really mentally ok.
But this is the result of the sick russophobia that is so common among these people.

Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 22 2014 7:32 utc | 28

@ Don Bacon

Haggis is seperate from Tripe Don. People eat tripe in Scotland but its generally prepared in hot milk and eaten as is. It is utterly disgusting. Both my Grandfathers ate it as it is supposedly good for folk with stomach ulcers.

Posted by: BillyBoy | Oct 22 2014 8:23 utc | 29

Revision of History of Events In 2008

Trying to whitewash Sikorski's grotescue falsification of events between Poland's government and Russia in 2008, this article was published in Poland's press. Managing editor and journalist Roman Imielski puts the arguments of Sikorski in a broader context with the War in Georgia. Politico reporter Ben Judah tweets as follows: "Other than to stand by the fact that Mr. Sikorski said what he said. I have nothing further to say on this matter."

Posted by: Oui | Oct 22 2014 9:07 utc | 30

Poland's Amnesia on Ukraine

Another blunder committed yesterday, refusing to explain a first slip at a press conference. As a public officer, Sikorski must keep in mind that the award of a single interview (in this case "Wyborcza") does not relieve him of the obligation to inform journalists, other media. [Interviewer Renata Grochal]

Fogginess in the evening for clarification even worsened his situation, but he apologized to journalists.

Posted by: Oui | Oct 22 2014 9:08 utc | 31

Posted by: Kraken | Oct 21, 2014 6:52:38 PM | 15

Re: The politics of it. Him and Carl Bildt. Both are out. The Swedish military just trying to get their relaxed citizens to fear the Russians.

The plot: To revitalize nationalism including Russian nationalism to destabilize Europe - and Russia. Of course Russian nationalism by history is imperialist. They deal in self fulfilling prophecy.

What was engineered in Ukraine was a fight of "right" and "left" ultra nationalists. The "left" ultra nationalists are more destabilizing for Russia than Ukraine's fascists.

Good comment - in German - on a Western ten year's drive for a Putin dictatorship.

Posted by: somebody | Oct 22 2014 9:36 utc | 32


I'm curious: why, in the open thread, did you copy paste a couple of paragraphs in Polish? Can you read Polish? Also, we have one or two Polish speakers here, but pasting quotations in French or German is one thing, but Polish? German, French, and Russian are world languages, but Polish most certainly is not, so I don't think Polish language quotations belong in an international blog like this one. The situation with Dutch is different, since German speakers can make some sense out of Dutch texts.

Posted by: Demian | Oct 22 2014 9:48 utc | 33

Posted by: Oui | Oct 22, 2014 5:08:40 AM | 31

It sure was intentional. The whole civil war in Ukraine only makes sense when you assume that the "Kyiv" players wanted to get rid of the Ukrainian voters who would not vote for the putsch. Moscow's judo tactics was to agree.

The only way 'Kyiv' can hope to fully integrate with the EU - soon - is a Yougoslav Slovenia, Croatia solution. Europe does not seem to want that.

Posted by: somebody | Oct 22 2014 10:04 utc | 34

@somebody #34:

The whole civil war in Ukraine only makes sense when you assume that the "Kyiv" players wanted to get rid of the Ukrainian voters who would not vote for the putsch.
Yes, but the intention of the "players" was to get rid of anti-fascist voters by ethnic cleansing, not by losing as part of Ukrainian territory regions in which the residents had not been zombified, as they had in the rest of Ukraine.

As for the German language piece you link to at #32, I wouldn't call it "good comment", even though it does say "Von einem russischen Imperialismus kann ich also insgesamt wenig entdecken, von einem amerikanischen Imperialismus, der im Falle der Ukraine-Krise viele EU-Länder, auch Deutschland, ins Schlepptau gezwungen hat, schon sehr viel mehr." But everyone at MoA already knows that. The writer comes up with the formulation "Wenn Nazis gegen Nazis antreten", which is extremely offensive to Russians. Russians liberated Germans from fascism, but for some reason the Germans thank the Americans for that, not the Russians. Finally, the idea that "Die erste Welle der Separatisten im Donbass, die nach dem Kiewer Umsturz die Rathäuser besetzte, kam eindeutig aus Russland" is just an expression of the usual insane Western Russophobia. The author complains that Russian newspapers don't publish him anymore, but they are quite right not to, given that he makes mad Russophobic claims like that one. So I read the article as intended to reinforce German Russophobia, while pretending to be contrarian.

Posted by: Demian | Oct 22 2014 10:37 utc | 35

@Demian #33

I had put together my diary, which took some time. It was still a "breaking news" story and the "Open Thread" was launched just minutes earlier. This thread by b openen an hour later.

I wanted to link to a Polish news site to find out the political repercussions for speaker Sikorski. Anyone can use a translator site to read the article in his/her language. I just checked the site and indeed it brings updated news items about the Sikorski affair.

In addition, I don't fancy the Politico website and 'reporter' Ben Judah, so I didn't want to link to article directly.

The Economist: Sikorski's reputation in tatters

Editor's Note: the original version of this post was based on statements by Radek Sikorski, the former Polish foreign minister, that an offer from Vladimir Putin to Donald Tusk to partition Ukraine had taken place. Mr Sikorski has since retracted those statements. The post has been amended to reflect the fact that Mr Sikorski was in error.

Posted by: Oui | Oct 22 2014 12:06 utc | 36

The US and its political representatives honestly believe they engage in realpolitik as well, it's just that the reality appears to be mainly invention, which our political class seems to believe. I have not experienced in my brief time alive that this does not eventually become a serious problem, or find any record in philosophy or the arts. History as a record has problems, naturally, but "realpolitik" which actually represents a modicum of "real," is not taken to kindly by vast swathes of those who are quite comfortable with delusion, and participate and benefit from it.

My problem with the world at this moment in history, is that it is easy for me to imagine that reality might distort in the other direction in time, like a boat swinging around in the wind, and given different circumstances, Obama and his advisors whoever they really are, might be playing Putin given the right circumstances. Kind of like a PK Dick story.

This is the problem I'm having contemplating the world at this moment in time. "Reality" will continue to shift and those vainly trying to determine the outcome, will adopt whatever behavior and ideology suits their changing predicament. So once we are through with one nonsense, we will all be finished with our lifetime, and the next generation will be bequeathed situations more baffling.

I would say this is particularly true while all main civilizations pursue agendas, no matter where on earth, that destroy the environment. And that while war continues to approach at its snail's pace and sane people try to avoid it having an innate ability for inductive and deductive reasoning who still have their wits, so, time is wasted truly dealing with environmental catastrophes. And we are all having to waste precious time separating ourselves from the delusional.

Posted by: geoff29 | Oct 22 2014 15:02 utc | 37

… And that while war continues to approach at its snail's pace and sane people try to avoid it having an innate ability for inductive and deductive reasoning who still have their wits, so, time is wasted truly dealing with environmental catastrophes. And we are all having to waste precious time separating ourselves from the delusional.

Posted by: geoff29 | Oct 22, 2014 11:02:23 AM | 37

And the most scary and dangerous members of the delusional class hold several positions within many of the globes governments installed by the even scarier delusional powers that be members. Not all elites are delusional and it may take them to stand up and offset the delusional sect of their class.

Posted by: really | Oct 22 2014 16:28 utc | 38

From The Vineyard of the Saker- Ukraine mini-SITREP: very ominous developments

Someone probably already posted this but even if that is the case, this needs to be posted again.

Posted by: really | Oct 22 2014 19:13 utc | 39

When my knowledge of Russian was in better shape than it now is, I was able to make about as much sense of Polish as I could make of Dutch from my German.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 22 2014 20:03 utc | 40

@lysias #40:

My mother tongue is Russian, whereas I only learned German in my early twenties. Yet I can make sense of Dutch, but not Polish. For one thing, reading a Slavic language that uses the Latin alphabet is very weird.

Posted by: Demian | Oct 22 2014 20:24 utc | 41

@39 really. thanks.. i think the build up is obvious and the fact that the cease-fire is holding in name only is pretty obvious too. my problem with the presentation is it's over dramatic.. these folks involved in war and the preparation for war can all see what is going on. it is much like playing poker where a certain amount of bluffing goes on, but you can never know whether it is a bluff or the real thing.. bottom line - the novo folks need to be prepared and the changes imply a willingness on russia's part for them to be full prepared in case the bluff is more then a bluff.. we'll see.

Posted by: james | Oct 22 2014 21:00 utc | 42

@james #42:

My two cents: I think it's the real thing. The Saker makes a reasonable conclusion that if voentorg has resumed, Moscow must think that a Ukie attack is imminent. According to Col, Cassad, this is not because the junta thinks it can overrun all of Novorossiya (I now use that term mostly out of nostalgia), but to further reduce Novorossiya's territory, to get a stronger bargaining position and to make the new state less viable.

Posted by: Demian | Oct 22 2014 21:31 utc | 43

Demian #43 Col Cassad and Saker have a pretty good track record about what is going on in Ukraine. If Russia is has resumed supplying military supplies to the rebels (easier to say than the Peoples Militia of Novosossiya) then it is very likely that their intelligence is picking up signals that the Kiev regime is preparing for a renewed offensive. The fact that Col Cassad is reporting the reopening of supplies likely means that the Russians are sending a message to Poroshenko -- don't forget what happened in August to your army when the voentorg was fully open. Hopefully, Poroshenko will get the message. Obviously, he is under tremendous pressure from the neo-Nazi factions in his government to do SOMETHING. It is clear that the shelling into Donetsk from the airport is a sign that he really does not have command over all of the military units stationed in eastern Ukraine. There could very well be something going on here that Poroshenko can't stop even if he wanted to.

As an aside, I find it hard to believe that those factions pushing for a renewed offensive are being directly backed by the US or the EU. Sometimes events can spin out of the control of even the top level puppet masters.

Posted by: ToivoS | Oct 22 2014 22:03 utc | 44

@ToivoS #44:

It occurred to me lately that you and I had a kind of debate about something, but I couldn't recall what it was about. You just reminded me: it was about how much power Poroshenko would have. I read somewhere recently that the Ukrainian P.M. has more power than the president. I agree with you that Poroshenko probably does not want a new offensive.

It's kind of funny how candid Col. Cassad is about voentorg being reopened. I guess the Russians decided that if the Western media have reported that Russia has invaded Ukraine, no harm can be done by blogs being candid about Russian military aid, especially since the Western media ignore Russian blogs.

The US always wants to make mischief for Russia, so it could be ordering the junta to begin the new offensive. I don't think the EU has any influence over the Ukrainian armed forces and militias. (This is not to say that NATO personnel from countries other than the US are not training Ukrainians.)

Posted by: Demian | Oct 22 2014 22:36 utc | 45

Yikes. Judah treats us to a pornographic session of Khodorkovsky butt-smooching. Apparently, K's planning to overthrow Putin using Twitter.

Peter Lee at Chinamatters sees right through Khodorkovsky.

And Khodorkovsky's son is President of Institute of Modern Russia which pays the way for warmonger Michael Weiss to write his fantastic tales at The Interpreter. Nice.

Posted by: ess emm | Oct 22 2014 22:37 utc | 46

@44 toivos

I agree with you, I think the US/EU/NATO has lost control of what's going down in Kiev. But hopefully someone rational from the US/EU/NATO faction will talk Kiev out of reconstituting and escalating the war against the rebels, of course the chance of that happening is slim but maybe it will happen. For the sake of the Ukraine's civilian population I hope peace can be found.

Posted by: really | Oct 22 2014 22:40 utc | 47

thanks demian.. we can wait and see.

@47 really.. i wouldn't count on anything 'rational'.. the war and everything that has led up to this point is not 'rational'.. eu is not 'rational'.. the usa and nato are not 'rational'.. the only player to show a high degree of rationality is russia, or china, or a number of other silent observers who lie in wait..

is it a bluff or the real thing? is russia opening the voentorg a response to the bluff or the real deal? we'll see.. as for track records, i know the saker has been wrong as well.. this really is like gambling and placing a bet.. we can't know the other players hand, especially as observers round the table who aren't holding any hand!

Posted by: james | Oct 22 2014 23:10 utc | 48

Funny thing is, Poland might have incentive to intervene in the western Ukraine if the Kiev government collapses and Somalia-like chaos takes hold. "Ookraeenians" could end up taking their frustrations out on Polish, Hungarian, and Slovak minorities in the western Ukraine.

Ben Judah made one point somewhat tangential to the truth - that the confrontation over the Ukraine has weakened the Russian pro-western "liberal" faction. So far, that strengthens Putin, but a hard nationalist backlash could engulf Putin if his measured approach to the Ukraine doesn't yield a satisfactory result in the Donbass. Igor Strelkov has stated that Putin needs to purge "liberals" from his team if it is to be effective. He made an analogy with the purge of "Lenin's guard" under Stalin.

Posted by: Thirdeye | Oct 22 2014 23:50 utc | 49

@Jim T, #26

I've seen it made many times in LaPlace, Louisiana, and I make it myself. It's just not made with tripe or pork intestine--other than the casings. Boudin otoh is made with pork liver.

Posted by: sleepy | Oct 22 2014 23:59 utc | 50

@Thirdeye #49:

Strelkov is right, although I have not read his new piece yet. (I did read what he was responding to, though.) I believe Strelkov writes in that piece that there will be no nationalist backlash against Putin because nationalists know that there is no alternative to Putin.

As for Ukrainians engaging in "pogroms" against non-Russian minorities (all the pogroms occurred in Ukraine, by the way), although after it gained "independence", Ukraine began a process of Ukrainizing everybody, the only minority Ukrainians were taught to hate were Russians. So I think such pogroms are unlikely. This does not mean that Poland will not intervene anyway, if Ukrainian collapse reaches a certain point.

@james #48:

A point I forgot to mention (I think it was raised by the Saker) is that Poroshenko has an incentive to resume the war: it is the only thing that can stave of Ukraine's continuing disintegration.

Posted by: Demian | Oct 23 2014 1:03 utc | 51

"...we can't know the other players like gambling and placing a bet.. we can't know the other players hand, especially as observers round the table who aren't holding any hand."

Posted by: james | Oct 22, 2014 7:10:00 PM | 48

I agree with your sentiment but as you mentioned the rational players as being Russia and China, I am hoping some in the Obama administration will come to the realization that a proxy war against Russia and China would and will not bear nuclear missles within spitting distance of Moscow. That neo con-lib cold war 2.0 wet dream will not be allowed to occur. The Ukraine and the region at large would be thrown into a endless proxy war, or at least until both sides run out of proxy soldiers. In my opinion this rediculous tactically obselete cold war affront by the west against Russia must end immediately.

Posted by: really | Oct 23 2014 2:01 utc | 52

Demian --

You're firing on all cylinders, it's this bit from the Saker' SitRep -- I thought this was the most interesting bit, and asked myself -- before or after the elections Sunday?

"I have been following the situation in Banderastan pretty closely and I can only say that the cracks in the regime are visible all over the place. Whether Poroshenko and his US master's really believe that an attack can succeed (I doubt it) or whether they really want to force Russia into openly intervening (which I see as almost inevitable), the fact is that starting a major war might well be the only way to save the Poroshenko regime which currently is in free fall."

to jas. & really at 48, 52

I've expressed my doubts before -- there's rational, and then there's imperial. We in the US, sadly, do imperial.

And if I might plug the Mid-Atlantic's own regional meat by-product, scrapple. All the stuff not good enough for sausage, with some corn meal and spices formed into a loaf, then sliced and fried. German in origin apparently, and a regional breakfast favorite.

Posted by: rufus magister | Oct 23 2014 3:19 utc | 53

@Demian #51

I think the support of Russian nationalists for Putin is highly contingent on results. So far, there's not much to show for the Minsk accord other than a steady drumbeat of death, destruction, and terror. It would be very hard to defend if the only result was bombardment from static, reinforced Ukrainian positions or significant losses in the face of a rested, regrouped UAF. Putin must know that. The last thing he needs is another flood of refugees or a contingent of volunteers embittered by defeat after standing down from the opportunity to defeat UAF. I'm guessing that there was a side deal to get Zacharchenko on board, to the effect that Russia would provide the means to fend off a renewed assault from UAF. The Voentorg revival is consistent with that.

The OUN killed at least as many Poles as they did Russians, and word is getting out in Poland that the massacre of Poles attributed to Katyn was the work of Ukrainian SS units.

Posted by: Thirdeye | Oct 23 2014 5:17 utc | 54

@Thirdeye #54:

You make good points. But a rebel leader said in an interview recently that the rebels didn't have enough men to take Mariupul easily, so I don't think all rebels were against the truce.

Maybe I'll have more to say on the matter after I've read Strelkov's piece.

It would certainly make things more interesting if tensions developed between Ukrainians and Poles. But my impression is that Poland is too much under the control of Atlanticists for that to happen.

Posted by: Demian | Oct 23 2014 5:45 utc | 55

@Demian #55

I agree about Mariupol. IMO it was good bait to draw UAF reserves southward, but the most strategic (and feasible) targets were the Donetsk airport, Avdeevka, and Svetlodarsk.

Posted by: Thirdeye | Oct 23 2014 6:59 utc | 56

"...Of course, this form of distorted reporting by Western media, from the so-called quality press to the gutter rags, is the new normal when it comes to the standoff with Russia over Ukraine.

The eruption of violence in the east, the«land grab and annexation" of Crimea, the instability of the Ukraine «government» (that is, the Western-backed llegal regime), the shooting down of the Malaysia civilian airliner in July, the shelling of civilian areas in Donetsk and the violation of a shaky ceasefire – all malfeasance is due to Russia, according to the Western media, whose coverage is in lockstep with the US State Department’s political agenda.

So, it’s no wonder that the Western media should now be accusing Russia of threatening Europe and Ukraine with a deadly winter freeze through skulduggery over gas payments. The problem with this Western government and media narrative is that it is devoid of any facts and crucial context.

The fact is that Ukraine owes Russia $5.3 billion in unpaid gas bills going back several years. As Western consumer societies might just appreciate, if a customer does not make good on outstanding credit for a service or goods, then the supplier of that service is entitled by law to with-hold further delivery. We can be sure that the Financial Times for example, would not keep handing out copies of its newspaper to customers who have clocked up years of non payment..."

Western Sponsors Liable for Kiev Basket Case

Posted by: really | Oct 23 2014 7:03 utc | 57

George Soros: Russia poses existential threat to Europe
Investor says Vladimir Putin’s aggressive nationalism challenges values and principles on which the EU was founded

Posted by: deluge | Oct 23 2014 12:02 utc | 59

Sikorski has also said: (mentioned by 25 as well)

"You know that the Polish-US alliance isn't worth anything.”

"It is downright harmful, because it creates a false sense of security ... Complete bullshit. We'll get in conflict with the Germans, Russians and we'll think that everything is super, because we gave the Americans a blow job. Losers. Complete losers.”

According to the transcript, Sikorski described Warsaw's attitude towards the United States using the Polish word “murzynskosc."

That derives from the word "murzyn," which denotes a dark-skinned person and someone who does the work for somebody else, according to the PWN Polish language dictionary.

Posted by: Noirette | Oct 23 2014 14:44 utc | 60

More precisely, "murzyn" (capitalized is the correct word for a Black person) does the work for part of the money, and the credit and the rest of the money goes to the person he works for, ghost writer could be an example. Politically, Sikorski is not "hard" or "far" right, his party being rather centrist, but he is surely a "neo-con" and apparently, quite stupid. Although what he said when he was taped while drinking made more sense than his interview, so perhaps rather than "having too much to drink" he simply did not have enough.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Oct 23 2014 16:10 utc | 61

Poroshenko (and Yats, etc.) are between a rock and a hard place.

Internally, the hyper-nationalists, or fascists, and many pols / others, incl. a good % of Ukraine citizens, want to see the Donbass gone, in one way or another. Can be rabid banderista bloodlust down to the more prosaic getting rid of voters who will never support Kiev. They (incl. many members of the Gvmt) saw a golden opportunity to instrumentalize the US and poodle-EU in a war against Russia. Yay! - They will support us, pay our gas bills, give us money, arms, and we get rid of Russkies at the same time!

So far, politically speaking, the 'fascist nationalists' - and they are not just some violent external to Gvmt. gp - have managed to more or less get rid of the Party of Regions, the Communists, and ‘lustration’ will eliminate ppl that are not on their side. (Btw, the condition of ‘having worked for one year for the Yanukovitch Gvmt.’ which makes one eligible for firing exists because Poro-choko was a member for not quite a year.)

They have also managed some symbolic victories - commemorations etc. - and concrete ones, freeing some of their ‘agitators’ (murderous gangsters) by threatening to march on Kiev. However, their opposition to the privatization of part of Naftogaz (demanded by the IMF and EU) did not succeed. In short, on the important issues, they have been side-lined. Note that the Svoboda manifest, a public stance, not claiming it is representative of those on the street, reads like a conventional if very in-your-face nationalist program.

However, the W backers of Kiev, as well as Russia, want an end to killing, though they may differ in their final plans, or plan A, B, etc. The W insists on the ‘unicity of Ukraine’, they don’t want destruction, strife, to interfere with their goals such as energy extraction, agri, banking, cheap labor, etc. and certainly don’t want to deal with two separate entities, mess, walls being dug, or trouble; nor to pay for reconstruction, billions is past gas bills, etc. However, *one faction* persists in using Ukraine as a proxy for aggression against Russia.

Russia would prefer some ‘regionalisation’ or ‘federalization’ or the like, to put an end to strife, a kind of return to the status quo ante. Plus, part of the Ukr. populace is against war and killing and only wants ‘peace’ even if they become poorer. The Minsk agreement (which followed on from a Putin proposition) is supported by all the external parties. Yet the war in the Donbass goes on, the cease fire was never really respected, and now is beginning to look moot.

Lastly, the oligarchs who play their own game of control of that or that industry, dependents, territory, have militias, are in vicious masked competition - their role is hard to dope out but one suspects far more important than is generally documented or acknowleged.

So the Poro-block is caught in these contradictions and the situation is extremely volatile and dangerous.

Posted by: Noirette | Oct 23 2014 16:16 utc | 62

"worked as a "roving reporter" for National Reniew in Angola on the UNITA project with neocons like Condi Rice, Abramoff and Gingrich; witnessed the first Stinger missiles handed to mujihadeen in Tora Bora; worked for AEI and the Atlantic Initiative; pushed the Orange Revolution in Ukraine, was defense minister and FM in Poland"

That's a perfect Cold War-generation resume. The generation bred on the most extreme Cold War propaganda.

It's amazing how the US has managed to put "it's people" into power all over Europe. Compared to the previous generation, it's a sort of shocking to see how completely successful the US empire building initiative has been there.

Look, as the Swedes waste huge sums searching for a "Russian" sub. As the Swedes pervert justice to keep an "enemy" of the US security state holed up in a UK embassy. As the Norwegians award the Peace Prize to a US war monger and US puppets in their Afghan War. As the UK is entirely a US poodle. As France and Italy bow to the neoliberal onslaught. As France puts the French economy on the line for Israel. As the Germans accept mass surveillance and even put up with warfare on the continent for the US. As Poland gears up for actual war. On and on and on...

There is, maybe, one holdout in Iceland.

Europe has never, since, I guess the 1920s when fascism was either in power or threatening in every country except France, the UK, and the USSR - been so dominated by a single ideology. And arguably now is far worse - at least in the 20s/30s, there was organized opposition. Today, there is none.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 23 2014 22:59 utc | 63

@62 noirette.. good summation.. thanks for sharing your perspective..

@63 guest77. i think the usa is a convenient front for the us$ world monetary system at present.. if you view these western countries (include canada and australia in the mix)allegiance towards the usa from this vantage point it makes much more sense.. none of them want to be put in a position of being false flagged which result in sanctions etc.etc. with eventually being cut out of the international financial system that they are bit players in.

Posted by: james | Oct 24 2014 5:45 utc | 64

businessweek article(see bottom) on Putin and ukraine had a commentator give this comment, explaining ukraine politics(semi feudal) and youtube video link to a ukrainian woman would be candidate to change things
Slitzh Thomas E O'Neil • 8 hours ago
For those not familiar with Ukrainian politics, the country is run by several oligarch clans, in a semi-feudal system. Each clan forms one or more political parties, paying the (quite high) registration fees fort he party and candidates, and controls the candidates. They use their media and other assets to promote their parties, and use their influence over the elected officials to rob the country blind.

The politicians, of course, get a small cut of the graft, but the great bulk goes to the oligarchs. Sometimes oligarchs also run personally - examples being Yanukovych (a small oligarch) and Poroshenko (a much bigger one); in many cases they are all appointed to "lucrative" positions (e.g., Poroshenko has appointed 16 oligarchs, some of them thelargest in Ukraine, to be governors of the various provinces)... ..

Part 1:

Posted by: brian | Oct 24 2014 6:52 utc | 65

from Nils van der vegte:
A guide to lazy Russia journalism
October 17, 2014 at 5:04pm
I wrote this article some time ago, but I will repost it here after receiving multiple requests.


So you’re a Brit or an American who wants to become a Russia journalist? Once you get past the self-serving bluster, it’s really a very safe, well-paid, and rewarding job – but only on condition that you follow a set of guidelines. Inspired by a post at the blog Kosmopolito on lazy EU journalism200, I decided to provide a similar service for work ethic-challenged Russia journalists. Enjoy!

1. Mastering and parroting a limited set of tropes is probably the most important part of your work as a journalist in Russia. Never forget to mention that Putin used to work for the KGB. Readers should always be reminded of this: The «former KGB spy», the «former KGB agent», etc. Other examples include (but are not limited to) «Putin destroyed democracy», «The Russian economy is dependent on oil», «There is no media freedom», «Russia is more corrupt than Zimbabwe», «Khodorkovsky is a political prisoner and Russia’s next Sakharov», «Russia is really weak» (but also a dire threat!), «Russia is a Potemkin village» and «a dying bear» that is ruled by «a kleptocratic mafia.»You get the drift...

2. Not sure who is doing what? Not sure how Russia works? Just make a sentence with the word «Kremlin». Examples include «this will create problems for the Kremlin», «the Kremlin is insecure», «the Kremlin’s support of anti-Westerndictators», etc.

3. This «Kremlin» is always wrong, and its motives are always nefarious. If it requires many signatures to register a party – that is authoritarianism, meant to repress liberal voices. If it requires only a few signatures to register a party – that is also authoritarianism, a dastardly plot to drown out the «genuine opposition» amidst a flood of Kremlin-created fake opposition parties.

4. If visitors to your blog or website criticize you for your one-sided coverage, don’t try to argue with them (or explain your reasoning). This will only hurt your professionalism. If one comes a-knocking, call him or her a «KGB agent», «FSB agent» (names of security services always work well), «fellow traveller»,«Stalinist», «useful idiot», «Kremlin troll», «Kremlin bot», «Putin’s pilot fish»,or «Surkov propagandist». If they persist, start deleting their comments and banning them.

5. Your job as a journalist isn’t to be objective. Instead, personal grievancesagainst the Russian authorities should always be prioritized. Remember, Putin is the Stalin of our age. If the Russian police are trying to arrest someone because he violated the law, it is perfectly acceptable to try to physically prevent the police from arresting him. In no way will this impinge on your professionalism.

6. Hyping anti-government demonstrations is of the utmost importance. A demonstration in downtown Moscow of 500 people at which your fellow journalists outnumber the protesters? ¡Viva la Revolución!

7. An important rule is that reporting on Russia means NOT researching important issues or looking past the rhetoric. To partially invert what C. P. Scott once said, «Comment is free, and facts aren’t sacred.» If various anonymous «experts» say that corruption in Russia is worse than in Zimbabwe, but the Russians themselves only report paying bribes as frequently as Hungarians, it is clear which line you should copy and paste. «Russia is dying out» is another good trope to raise at any opportunity, even if (obviously Putin-controlled) statistics agencies are saying that the Russian population is now growing.

8. You must also learn to suppress any cognitive dissonance you might get from arguing that Russia is really weak and in a state of seemingly perpetual collapse («dying bear», «rusting tanks», «mafia state», etc), but at the same time a dire threat to Western security and civilization itself.

9. Every non-systemic opposition member is a potential ally. Don’t cover any negative sides of these people, as this will only complicate things for your reader.Though it may be true that the leftwing activist Sergey Udaltsov is known for his Stalin admiration, that the anti-corruption blogger Navalny is prone to making racist remarks, that liberal journalist Latynina doesn’t want poor people voting, and that Khodorkovsky is a mega-crook even according to the European Court of Human Rights, these are all unimportant details that detract from the overall goal of overthrowing the bloody regime and true democratization.

10. Speaking of democracy – as far as a democratic journalist like yourself is concerned, anybody who is against Putin is a democrat. No matter if the demos, the people, only favor him or her with single-digit approval ratings (and evenregardless of his or her own views on democracy). To the contrary, any Russian who supports Putin is part of the «sovok» cattle herd, and his or her opinions are invalid due to their inherent stupidity or Kremlin brainwashing. Feel free to express these sentiments on Twitter, but do make an effort to cloak them in political correctness when writing at more august venues.

11. The systemic opposition – i.e., those who participate in the farce knownas Russian elections – are really Kremlin stooges in disguise. Even though the Communists are by far the formal biggest opposition bloc, it is non-systemic activists and sundry «dissidents» who are the «genuine Russian opposition».

12. Everything in Russia involves around Putin. There is no one else in Russia, never was, and it is he who decides everything in the biggest country on this planet. Did it take an annoyingly long time for you to get your clothes back that one time you lost your dry cleaning ticket? Or maybe someone stole your purse in Moscow? All Putin’s fault!

13. Don’t bother learning Russian. It does not help to increase the quality of your articles. You can always rely on your fellow non-Russian journalists for juicy rumors about Putin’s Swiss bank accounts and nubile mistresses. If anything, learning Russian will put your professionalism at risk by exposing you to the opinions of ordinary Russians, which may accidentally leak out in your articles.

14. If you do end up learning Russian, make sure to keep your circle of Russian acquaintances limited to other democratic journalists and leading members of the liberal opposition. Never mingle with non-opposition Russian journalists, i.e. propaganda mouthpieces of the regime.

15. Above all, you must cultivate a burning, righteous hatred for «the Kremlin’s TV channel», RT, and anyone who works or even appears there. It is «low brow», «full of conspiracies», «slavishly pro-Putin», «anti-American», etc. Never directly compare it with Western media bias, because that is «moral relativism» and «whataboutism» (see below). It’s one thing if Kremlin propagandists broadcast in Russian, it’s quite another when they directly compete for your Anglophone audience by covering irrelevant and anti-American stuff like Occupy protests, Wikileaks, or US indefinite detention laws. Attack them like yourprofession’s reputation is on the line!

16. Whenever you study conflicts between Russia and other countries, always blame everything on Russia – regardless of objective facts, and especially when the conflict is with a staunch Western ally. So, even when Russia bans wine imports from a country one of whose own Ministers described said wine in scatological terms, it is «economic warfare». Ergo for cutting off gas supplies to a country that refuses to pay for them. Killing Russian soldiers is always commendable; any Russian retaliation is typically «imperialist», «nationalist», «neo-Soviet revanchist», and various combinations thereof. Never forget that Putin hates the West and dreams of building a fascist neo-Tsarist empire. Any expression of Russian goodwill is a dastardly plot to dupe or divide the West, which is tragically all too trusting. Any expression of Western goodwill towards Russiais «appeasement», and is to be condemned in no uncertain terms. Never forget Munich! Those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it!!!

17. Guessing is fun! In the event you find guessing a bit too taxing on yourimagination, just interview some marginal, highly unpopular Russian politician.Boris Nemtsov, Vladimir Ryzhkov, and Gorbachev are usually good bets. Their guesses are usually a lot more creative than what you could have come up with yourself.

18. Never try to place Russia’s problems in a broader perspective. Don’t mentionthat population decline is far steeper in the Baltics, that more Americans were arrested in Occupy events than Russians protesting against Putin, or that more Britons say they want to emigrate than Russians. This is called «Sovietstyle whataboutism», and only «Kremlin trolls» engage in it. Leave logic and statistics to those losers; your weapons of choice as a democratic journalist are rhetoric, personal attacks and insinuations.

19. Always remind readers that Putin kills critical reporters – brave journalists kind of like yourself, in fact! – and prove it by quoting one he has not, or by including in your examples murdered journalists who were supporters of Putin.Under no circumstance should you mention that the rate of journalist murders was much higher under Yeltsin, or that it is lower in Russia today than in «democratic» Mexico and Brazil, or that unlike Russia, Israel currently imprisons several journalists.

20. Stalin. Always remind readers that Russians like Stalin very much. Putin,even more so. Their names both have two syllables and share the last two letters,what more evidence do you need? Every time Stalin appears on a bus or in a school notebook, or is described as an «effective manager» in one of dozens of textbooks, it must be on orders from Putin himself. Do not mention any instances of historic revisionism involving glorification of SS and nationalist war criminalsin the Baltics and Ukraine.Good luck on your new career as a Russia journalist!

Posted by: brian | Oct 24 2014 7:26 utc | 66

'Western propagandists have been writing these stories for at least 7 years now that Putin's hold on power is very tentative and the Russian people are ready to rise up in rebellion. This fool Judah has no idea at all what is going on in Russia and I would suspect neither does Kerry and Obama and their advisers.
Posted by: ToivoS | Oct 21, 2014 7:44:17 PM | 17'


Posted by: brian | Oct 24 2014 9:37 utc | 67

Posted by: brian | Oct 24, 2014 5:37:25 AM | 66

What? You disagree?

Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 24 2014 13:21 utc | 68

brian @66: EXCELLENT

If you want to respond to lazy (paranoid) anti-Russia 'journalism', go here:

and get involved in the comments. Practice makes perfect.

Posted by: fairleft | Oct 24 2014 20:39 utc | 69

Nothing better than hot spicy boudin on a cold winter's morning, at least when I was younger. I lived in Cameron Parish (Creole, 1/4 mile from the Gulf) in 1980-82, right at the tail end of the oil boom. I remember pumping concrete down into wells being closed down, and everyone cursing the Saudis. I loved Dixie Jambalaya and all the fresh shrimp, but my taste for seafood has waned some over the years. Especially after the Deepwater Horizon. Are you authentic Cajun?

Posted by: Jim T | Oct 24 2014 22:23 utc | 70

The whole reporting in main stream media since a few months about this Ukraine thing is a smoke screen. Some sinister forces wanted to once again paint Russia into a corner like it happened "successfully" (look what a mess it is now!) with Afghanistan and the Soviet Unio. But Russia didn't take the bait fully and now all that is left for the West is to pick up the pieces and see if they can heat Ukraine by burning EU money.

Posted by: Colm Barry | Nov 13 2014 11:41 utc | 71

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