Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
October 25, 2014

Ukraine: Winter And Reigniting The War

(While I am busy ..)

The Saker says something is up in Ukraine. He expects a Ukrainian offense after tomorrows election (in which the anti-coup opposition is given no real chance to compete).

As I wrote earlier I believe that Jack Frost makes a new military campaign unlikely. I am not sure which side would want to again heat up the low flame "truce" war that has waged over the last weeks. Though both sides seem to have some itch for it.

But it has started freezing in Ukraine and a winter-war would be mostly road-bound, difficult to proceed for both sides with some additional advantages for those defending build up areas. Tanks and trucks would get stuck in muddy fields. It is not the environment in which one can expect wide space taking movements that would change the overall situation.

I am therefore scratching my head and wondering what military genius, obviously without any knowledge of World War II battles in Ukraine, would plan for such a campaign. It would be a quite lunatic endeavor.

Posted by b on October 25, 2014 at 19:08 UTC | Permalink

next page »

i agree with you b. the only thing i could see happening is continuing to terrorize donetsk and surrounding area in what some others suggested would help give some leverage in any negotiations... i just can't see it myself, but the build up is supposed to be happening which suggests otherwise..

Posted by: james | Oct 25 2014 19:40 utc | 1

That's may be a problem for a Novorossiya counter offensive but the Ukrainian side is just next to their immediate objectives. They only need to take the urban area of Donetsk and Luhansk and Novorossiya becomes a non-entity. You just need to see the current frontlines to see that the truce wouldn't be kept for long. The Ukrainian army is too close to their objectives geographically (though much further militarily).

Whoever was the genius Russian strategist that cut Novorossiya Army wings before they could create a proper buffer zone for the fleeting hope of a return to normalcy with the imaginary entity named European Union must be really congratulating himself right now. The EU even stopped inflicting more self-damaging sanctions on itself! At the end in this play there is only one real actor, the US, and the rest are the strings it uses to control the rest of the Western Empire. Whatever delusions of control or power some may have ... for example in Germany.

The real question isn't if the battlefield will be freezing and how they plan to fight on empty plains (which won't happen). The question is where a ruined Ukraine gets the money for a war.

Posted by: ThePaper | Oct 25 2014 19:42 utc | 2

An economic catastrophe is about to hit -- is an attack a possible diversion to counter the anticipated unrest?

Posted by: chet380 | Oct 25 2014 19:59 utc | 3

IMHO, it is more about the political than military realities. Poroshenko seems likely to get a plurality, but not a majority tomorrow. Lyashko & the Radicals, the likely #2 finisher, are campaigning under the slogan that they'll get the Crimea back. Popular Front has fielded nearly a doz. "volunteer batttalion commanders" as candidates.

Ill-advised military, but well-played politically, to protect the right flank. And then when it fails, well, we'll see who gets to sort the sheep from the goats, who sabotaged the offensive and who are the "heroes."

And chet380 at #2 -- and it's a diversion from the economy too, a multi-purpose crisis.

Posted by: rufus magister | Oct 25 2014 20:20 utc | 4

I'll vote they do.

Amerikas neo-conns never give up and they real don't care how many Ukraine's freeze to death. I also read but can't find the link that Russia has started to ship arms into the East. This won't end well for citizens in the Ukraine.

Posted by: jo6pac | Oct 25 2014 20:21 utc | 5

Talk about slinging shit at the wall to see what will stick, these neocons sure throw. Everywhere that their fingerprints are, it's the civilian population who take the brunt and suffer the most. But who really cares, as long as the bragging rights and 15 seconds of fame are in the works. Sacrifice Ukraine, who cares how many perish? What kind of barbarians have the U.S. bred and allowed to call the shots on the world stage?

Posted by: Norman | Oct 25 2014 20:31 utc | 6

"it's the civilian population who take the brunt and suffer the most. "

This is true as ever. The tactic to avoid total defeat in Iraq - ignite a sectarian civil war which killed, by some estimates, 1,000,000 people - was evidence that these new imperial wars were being waged with all the amorality and concern for human life as was Vietnam. Of course, this was seen already in the Iraq sanctions, where the death of another 1,000,000 (confirmed) was announced "worth it".

The Ukraine is a horror. The USA giving the blessing - openly - to the nightmare of Naziism.

I don't believe that it will be the Novorussia who sparks a continuation of the current war. The government of Russia seems to have convinced them to look at the bigger world picture and not do anything rash. To put it another way: Russia is acting responsibly, the USA and their Nazi proxies - fueled by propaganda and phony history - are not.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 25 2014 21:04 utc | 7

The recent scenes from Kiev of Nazis marching in the streets, flares and chains and racist slogans and all, are a reminder of what Naziism means. With its repression, urge towards genocide, its longing for war, its scapegoating, its headlong move towards self-destruction - is a frightening reminder of what can happen when the specter of fascism is allowed to rise from its well deserved tomb.

Ukraine is heading towards a state where this small, violent minority can take over and spark a war with Russia. Like Naziism before it, it has been fostered by the West. First as tragedy, then as farce.

The US as a whole has now fully rejected the lessons of the 1930s and 1940s. Despite even that Communism cannot be used as an excuse. This is naked Imperialism doing its work under the banner of "promoting democracy and tolerance".

This cannot go on as it is. There will be a clash, and we should all pray that it doesn't become one of nuclear arms.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 25 2014 21:12 utc | 8

It looks like Putin is starting to call the US out. Here is the full transcript to the speech and the Q+As.

The Vineyard of the Saker: Putin's speech at the Valdai Club - full transcript

Posted by: Fran | Oct 25 2014 21:15 utc | 9

Election would be 100% only anti-russian groups.

On war, the coming weather months ahead would NOT benefit rebels, thats for sure add that to the coming offensive by the regime and it could be over..

Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 25 2014 21:17 utc | 10

It should be noted (and heartening) that the top two contenders for power in Ukraine do not even together form a plurality.

Ukraine is in a well deserved political meltdown. It is hard to imagine that any real government can form out of this putrid morass of greed and psychopathy.

After having been, just 30 years ago, the most important and prosperous component of the world's second leading power - Ukraine is likely moving towards a single outcome: earning the mantle of a "failed state".

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 25 2014 21:17 utc | 11

Sounds to me like a rehash of the Georgian war. The plan then was a blitzkrieg leading to a quick victory before Russia can react.

Then as now, the fascists and their American strategists need to remember that cities make great speed bumps.

Posted by: sid_finster | Oct 25 2014 21:44 utc | 13

I find it very hard to accept that the Ukraine regime will initiate an offensive against the Donbas republic in November just after they suffered a major defeat in August. During WWII the most powerful army in the world, the Wehrmacht, never initiated an offensive that late in the year. They always began in the summer. The two great offensives that saw the German armies defeated early in the war (Moscow, the first winter and Stalingrad, the second) followed spring offensives that petered out when winter came. The Soviets counterattacked in the late fall and winter.

Poroshenko must be under tremendous pressure to reverse his last summer's defeat but even with that pressure he (and the Ukrainian high command) cannot be stupid enough to start an offensive in early November. There is one thing that Russia can supply to the Donbas militias and that is the equipment to survive in winter war. They will be in defensive positions and if anything was learned the Battle of Moscow it is very difficult to supply front line offensive operations with sufficient clothing and shelter.

In general I have a lot of respect for Saker, but I do think he is way off on this prediction. Unless the people in Washington who are pushing this conflict are even more clueless than they have proved so far.

Posted by: ToivoS | Oct 25 2014 22:44 utc | 14

The way I see this conflict the Russians fear the nascent Peoples Republics in Ukraine as much or possibly more than they do the Fascist regime in Kiev. Every move Putin has made especially imposing the cease-fire has been aimed at stopping the spread of this Socialist idea aimed directly at the Oligarchs supported by Russia and the West. Putin has begged and badgered the leaders of Novorussia to stop their resistance and seek accomodation with the Kiev regime and this included the removal of Strekov and other military commanders when the war was beginning to be won.

This is not the 1940's and the winter will not be a great factor, they have paved roads and snow plows now and with Global Warming milder winters.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Oct 25 2014 23:02 utc | 15

@2 It might not be a distraction as much as a means of weakening the street. The Kiev regime gave the Brownshirts guns, military experience, and promises, and much of the old regular Ukraine army has been taken out of commission. The CIA affiliated regime probably lacks the resources and popularity to pull off a night of the long knives, but they still need to get rid of them.

Much like the Saudis funding various militants groups, they want to use an excuse to get the more hot headed individuals to leave. If they don't leave soon, the Russians and the NAF will lock down the border. The Kiev rump state will be more accessible to Europe which would lead to an exporting of terrorism into Europe against groups who will be deemed traitors. My guess is the saner elements have recognized NATO isn't coming which means there is no German regular army available to protect the regime, so they need to get rid of their own thugs and will try to get the Russians to do it for them.

Posted by: NotTimothyGeithner | Oct 25 2014 23:06 utc | 16

Slightly off-topic. The International Business Times (Australian ed.) has published an article about the 26 minute documentary about MH17 which RT released recently:

Pilot Was Targeted Right In The Stomach – Expert Alleges

I'm surprised that this Anglophone news outlet is treating this RT documentary so neutrally. Did it not get the memo that RT is Russian propaganda and Putin's alternate reality? The video is well worth watching.

Posted by: Demian | Oct 25 2014 23:13 utc | 17

But b you are assuming they are rational, they are not. The neo-cons live in their 'bubble of reality and hubris' which, at best, has only a tenuous link to any objective facts. In the neo-con mindset, going to war with Russia in winter makes perfect sense.

One thing is that many of them actually believe their own lies and propaganda. For example I saw an interview with Condalissa Rice recently and she was banging on about the EU doesn't need Russian oil and gas because they could access the "bountiful riches of American energy resources". The fact that, despite the oil and gas 'fracking' boom, the US is still a massive oil/gas importer seems to have escaped her, but I'll bet she actually believed what she said.

In a true technical sense these people are mentally ill. So to expect any rational decision making by them is a waste of time. I sometimes play 'thought experiments', trying to come up with some new absurdity that they might do...and I am often right at predicting their behaviour, and the more absurd the idea I come up with the more likely they will do it.

I know that it hard for people like b (and nearly all the commentators here) to try to think in a non-rational way, but to really try to understand and predict neo-con's behaviour you have to put that rationality and facts stuff aside at times, because it is certainly not a factor in their decision making.

Posted by: Lisa Formally OldSkeptic | Oct 25 2014 23:20 utc | 18

The purpose of the snap election was to cleanse parliament of any opposition to plans that would see more money being poured into the war in the East. So, it follows, that it is rational to assume that something is on the horizon. Testing Russian resolve now that oil prices have plummeted isn't a bad idea.

Posted by: Pat Bateman | Oct 25 2014 23:36 utc | 19

@Lisa #17:

Yes, the neocons are psychos, but I don't think they control Kiev when it comes to military matters. The CIA and Pentagon do that, and I believe there are few neocons there. (But then there was Paul Wolfowitz...)

The rebels (not just the Saker) are afraid that Kiev is going to start a new offensive, but they are not saying that that is because of US pressure.

As for Condi's "bountiful riches of American energy resources": spoken like a true evangelical nut job.

@Wayoutwest #14:

Since Strelkov supports Putin, by your logic, Strelkov supports the oligarchs. (Why do people capitalize that word?)

Posted by: Demian | Oct 25 2014 23:36 utc | 20

Demian the neo-cons dominate all foreign (and by extension military) policy now, they won all their internal battles years ago. So all those Pentagon/CIA/etc 'advisers' in Kiev are all neo-cons too.

The first body in the US to really grab this was the USAF, 'full spectrum dominance' and all that. But bit by bit the other arms of Govt have became neo-con centres too. Oh sure there are individual hold outs in some places, but they are ignored and being steadily taken out over time. So the whole mechanism of the US Govt is basically neo-con now.

You know how it works, if you are in some area of Govt and disagree, then your career options go down the tubes real fast. So those that survive then, at least, pretend to be neo-cons because it is the dominant ideology.

Go back in time and re-read Karen Kwiatkowski's columns pre the Iraq war and how the neo-cons won all the internal political battles. She saw and documented how it was done in her area (Office of Special Plans and all that stuff).

Since then their power has just grown until it is the totally dominant ideology in the many power centres that comprise the US Govt. Idiots they may be in terms of rational decision making, but they are all genius class at internal politics and nearly always win.

Just like their 'sisters and brothers', the neo-liberals, who have won all the internal political battles about economic policies, to the point where anything that is not neo-liberal approved never gets any time or consideration at all.

So the inmates are in charge of the insane asylum and it is not going to change, at least for a very long time. They are far too immune to reality.

Posted by: Lisa Formally OldSkeptic | Oct 26 2014 0:04 utc | 21

@15- Your scenario seems the most likely one if an offensive really is in the offing. This would suggest Poroshenko might have seen the light and has ceased to be the US stooge.

Alternatively I wouldn't discount a night of the long knives- Victoria Nuland paid Kiev a visit recently and I can't imagiine the state department walking away from their 5 billion plus investment at this point. But who the hell knows.

Posted by: Nana2007 | Oct 26 2014 0:32 utc | 22

Wayout west: The way I see this conflict the Russians fear the nascent Peoples Republics in Ukraine

Utter nonsense. Putin does not fear socialist revolution in Donbas. He has been supporting the Donbas rebels for months. At the most, he fears that their militias might provoke all out war with NATO. Therefore he has been careful to give them enough support to thwart Ukrainian aggression but not enough support for them to mount any real offensives that might take over Maripul or Kharkov. Putin is simply protecting Russia's national interests. As much as I would love to see the insurrection to be successful in Maripul and Kharkov I have to respect Putin's judgement here. Actually he has a much better understanding of what is now possible on the battlefield than do either of us.

Posted by: ToivoS | Oct 26 2014 0:44 utc | 23

@ Demian, 16:

I'm surprised that this Anglophone news outlet is treating this RT documentary so neutrally. Did it not get the memo...?

Tried the link and got a 404. Recently in the "Waiting for Jack Frost" discussion I posted on how the western corporate media self-censors; I suspect that this was one of the rare slips in which a "off-message" (non-Russophobe) story briefly got published, but quickly got killed. I tried quick searches for it elsewhere (including on RT) but found nothing--do you know of another working link to it?

Posted by: Vintage Red | Oct 26 2014 0:53 utc | 24

This time Putin will go all the way to Kyiv. The late September "cease fire" was used by Usia to resupply the fascists. This will be an artillery war, not a ground war in winter. You forget, the ground freezes hard by December. Go Novorussia!

Posted by: zadoofka | Oct 26 2014 1:02 utc | 25

Naturally those ever so clever neocons/Lwow superheroes/Kyiv geniuses do not imagine that maybe, just maybe (having destroyed great swathes of infrastructure in DPR and LPR) someone might seek to interrupt reverse gas flows or truncate western bound gas pipelines through Ukraine. What's that wintry word? Ah, yes: Brrrrrr

Posted by: Cortes | Oct 26 2014 1:05 utc | 26

Latest election polling (posted 22 Oct.), courtesy of the National Endowment for Democracy and the Ukrainian website ""

Their item on the Upcoming Elections’ Leaders are Bloc of Poroshenko, Lyashko Party, and 'Narodnyi Front' quotes a the results of recent polling by the "Demokratychni Initsiatyvy” Fund Source/

Assuming the distribution of undecided voters (32%) mirrors the responses received, "7-8 political powers would enter the Verkhovna Rada:

Bloc of Petro Poroshenko (30.4%),
Radical Party of Oleh Lyashko (12.9%),
Narodnyi Front [Popular or National Front] (10.8%),
Samopomіch [Selfhelp] Association (8.5%),
Batkivshchyna [Homeland, Yulia Timoshenko] (7.5%),
Sylna [Strong] Ukraina of Tihipko (5.6%),
the party Opozytsiinyi [Opposition] Bloc (5.9%),
and probably Hromadska Pozytsia [Public Position] (4.8%)."

It looks to take a minimum of a three-party coalition to obtain a majority. As there are single-member districts and national lists, the votes may not exactly translate to no. of seats.

About the Democratic Initiatives Foundation, from its page at the NED.

"The Democratic Initiatives Foundation celebrated its 15th anniversary last December with much to be proud of. One of its enduring contributions to Ukraine’s democracy was the perfecting of the “exit poll” as an instrument for showing up falsification of elections by an authoritarian regime." The founder, Ilko Kucheriv, "came to the United States as a Reagan-Fascell Fellow in 2006-7...." after his work on polling enabled the Orange Revolution of 2004.

So make of the data what you will.

NTGeithner at 15 And Nana2007 at 21 -- A "Night of the Long Knives" is certainly a possibility, the respectable crazies of the Radical Party and Popular Front disposing of Pravyi Sektor and Svoboda riff raff. Then the survivors get to sort things out.... Their "sabotage" of the late fall campaign could be the means to dispose of them.

Posted by: rufus magister | Oct 26 2014 1:15 utc | 27

@Lisa #20:

I stand corrected. I guess the basic error I made was forgetting that the top brass are political and not military in nature.

@Vintage Red #23:

LOL. I wonder if the author of that article has gotten her pink slip yet.

Google cache of story about RT doc on MH17

By the way, is Vintage Red anything like Deep Red?

Posted by: Demian | Oct 26 2014 1:47 utc | 28


I have read most everything Putin has said to and about the people of the Donbas including his pledge that he wouldn't allow anyone to harm them, which was an empty promise. The rest of his statements have been calls for them to lay down their arms and submit to the dictats of Kiev with some small protections. He allowed the flow of weapons to Donbas, IMO, because of the overwhelming support from the Russian public.

Because, as you said, he knows much about the military situation there he had to know that the cease-fire would save the Ukie Army and allow them to regroup, rearm and renew their attack.

Ukraine is not a member of NATO so they have no mandate to intervene and just as the US did nothing when Criema was taken it is doubtful they would react any differently now. The people of Donbas need to reclaim the large portion of that area they have lost before considering the march to Kiev to liberate the rest of the Ukraine.

Putin and the Russian Ruling Class fear Socialism as much as any Capitalist regime does and especially when it displays how direct democracy works as the People's Republics did.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Oct 26 2014 2:00 utc | 29

Re: Labels, like neo-con.
They are convenient, but inaccurate. The simple fact is that US policy even before it was the US has been a strategy of conquer-and-rule, dominate-and-subjugate, starting with the Native Americans. It worked, for a while.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 26 2014 3:50 utc | 30


Yet another misreading of events. It is difficult to believe that you are not doing so deliberately.

The struggle between US-led West vs. Russia et al. has many dimensions. Your comment(s) conveniently ignore such realities. You can't credibly comment here without understanding context and history. You need these to see past the propaganda that is flung on both sides.

And NATO has taken a number of steps to counter Russia under the guise of assuring NATO countries that border Russia. This posturing plus trumpeted guaranties of Ukrainian territorial integrity by individual NATO nations (notably the US) plus the ongoing sanctions and propaganda war mean the situation remains uncertain and volatile.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 26 2014 4:35 utc | 31

Russian Spring


Situation overview from 1st Inter-Brigade of South-East:

From the evening and until midnight the punitive troops proceeded bombarding Donetsk districts Kievskiy and Kuybishevskiy by “Grad” rocket systems. District Petrovskiy and settlement Spartak were also hit. During the day, as reported by the mayor’s office, the situation turned calm. Ignited clashes were confined to territory around the airport.

Gorlovka, clashes continued on fringes of the city; sides resorted to heavy weapons.

Mar`inka, west of Donetsk, Ukrainian territory, clashes resumed yesterday tonight. Same reported from area of Novomikhaylovka, south-west of Donetsk, also Ukrainian territory.

From Lugansk, significant clashes were reported in Schast’ye: nazis’ positions were attacked by mortars and “Grad” systems fire. So far, Results so far are unknown.

Situations in area of “Bakhmutka” in area of settlement Smeloye remains unchanged.

Russian Spring


Message from combatant Prokhorov:

“No one had broken the ring to outpost 32 despite upbeat announcements. Today they were let go, they all, via a specially organized passage.

The Ukrainian Command was advised. Few minutes after the paratroopers of 80th brigade advanced from their positions the Ukrainian artillery lashed at them. To shield them, Ukrainians were struck back. The paratroopers were inflicted several “300th” (wounded); they had to turn back to the outpost.

Russian Spring


Intelligence of the army of Donetsk Republic:

According to intelligence data, between October 28-30 the troops of Kiev junta plan a treacherous offensive on Donetsk and Lugansk Republics. The offense main targets are Donetsk and Mariupol`.

Bandera forces of these two groups of Ukrainian military would attack from crossing directions to isolate combatants defending Donetsk, completing encirclement of the city in Ilovaysk.

By simultaneous attack in direction of Debal`tsevo – Uspenka it is expected to split the armies of Donetsk and Lugans Republics and prevent from further communication.

In addition, by attacking in directions Schast`ye-Biryukovo and Starognatovka-Ul`yanovskoe, it is planned to reach the Russia border and establish control over it.

The Command of Donetsk and Lugansk Republics is aware of opponent’s plans and have reacted accordingly.

Posted by: Fete | Oct 26 2014 4:45 utc | 32

Whatever hardships are experienced by Ukraine and Europe will be blamed on Russia.


Might chaos in Ukraine lead to NATO assistance of humanitarian relief efforts?


What winter does is slow reaction times. Well prepared aggressors might seek to gain ground. Neocons LOVE 'facts on the ground'.


Neolibcons are users. Seems they would be more likely to redirect the crazies than reign them in.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 26 2014 4:47 utc | 33

OT - just a note on an NYT article on ISIS captives

Key points:

States that some of the hostages were essentially suffering from Stockholm Syndrome, converting to Islam and taking new names, with their captors intending to have them participate in a jihadist training camp.

Key details of the article came from an ISIS source.

Initially no ransom was asked (why were they holding them). ISIS told families not to contact authorities (since when do militants not want either money or attention for kidnappings, since when do they contact families directly rather than governments?).

Sergey Gorbunov was the first prisoner executed - as a warning to other states to pay ransoms (his supposed execution was never made public and there seems to be no mention of him on the internet after appearing in a video warning he would be killed) apparently ISIS showed the execution footage to the prisoners not the public or their governments.

Some weird things there.

Posted by: Bran | Oct 26 2014 4:49 utc | 34

Lisa @20

Great analysis in general, but I disagree that the neocons "are all genius class at internal politics."

You don't need to be a genius when you represent the combined political power of the military-industrial complex and the Israel Lobby. Neoconism represents the nexus of economic interests between the imperialist Israeli state and U.S. arms industries. Inside the beltway that's utterly dominant. And so, as you say, Washington power people have gotten very comfortable over the last 15-20 years aligning their official views with neoconism, however badly that ideology deviates from reality and common sense.

The sickness in the nexus comes from Netanyahu's Likudism and imperial Zionism. That ideology is the product of some virulently sick, disconnected from reality people, very racist and comfortable with racist theories to 'explain' and dismiss their enemies (who must also be their inferiors). So you see it infecting official Washington (i.e., Hillary, McCain, Obama, etc.), in its arrogantly dismissive attitude toward Russia. Normal common-sense Americans have no tradition of looking down on Russia or of 'being a##holes', putting down other countries for no reason. That stuff is jarring for a normal American, so we need a lot of anti-Russian propaganda to make it go down easier. And we're getting it ...

Posted by: fairleft | Oct 26 2014 4:56 utc | 35

Look like the Nazi stratgegy at the Battle of the Bulge.....

Posted by: Jack Sparrow | Oct 26 2014 5:03 utc | 36

Posted by: Bran | Oct 26, 2014 12:49:30 AM | 32

"Key details of the article came from an ISIS source."

It's a pity the JYT forgot to say whether the 'ISIS source' is from "Israel" or the US.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Oct 26 2014 5:14 utc | 37


The Big Picture sometimes obscures what is happening on the ground so I understand your missing these important facts.

I have yet to see any reference to the People's Republics in Putin's or any other Russian writings, they are always called by the region names or Novorussia, correct me if I am wrong. This is a subtle but telling omission.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Oct 26 2014 5:52 utc | 38

@8 fran. thanks for the link. i enjoyed reading what putin had to say. he was trying to be positive, but i felt like it was a lot of work for him as he can see how the direction the world is headed away from international law into a world where their are no rules, or rules that are being broken regularly. the 3 paragraphs starting with "So, what is in store for us if we choose not to live by the rules.." down to the break at "Colleagues, friends," are the critical part of his interview as i see it..

@16 demian. that documentary from rt was quite good. just watched it. it is interesting that it was mentioned in the australian msm. at the end of the documentary an australian couple is briefly interviewed saying they are interested in the truth. perhaps the australian news outlet felt some sense of responsibility for a broader examination of the mh17 accident and opted to highlight this? one thing i know is malaysia as a country are said to be convinced it ( mh17) was downed by ukrainian forces.. i guess they don't get the same blanket western msm that most of us get in the west.

@36 and etc. wayoutwest... you aren't making much sense to me either.. you seem like a variation of a previous poster that i haven't seen here for a while..

Posted by: james | Oct 26 2014 6:35 utc | 39

Just read that many facist parties did good in the election, one came #2 in the election. Lets see how western MSM spin this!

Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 26 2014 8:03 utc | 40

If the Nazis win, then there will be war.

Posted by: Fernando | Oct 26 2014 8:42 utc | 41

Washington long ago learned the dark art of silencing truth with defamation. Washington used defamation to overthrow Iran’s elected leader, Mossadegh in 1953, to overthrow Congo’s prime minister Patrice Lumumba in 1960, to overthrow Guatemala’s President Arbenz in 1954, to overthrow Venezuela’s President Hugo Chevez in 2002, a coup that was cancelled by the Venezuelan people and military who threw out Washington’s stooge replacement and reinstalled Chavez, to overthrow Ukraine’s elected President Yanukovych in 2013, to overthrow Honduras President Manuel Zelaya in 2009 , to overthrow in 2013 Mohamed Morsi, president of the first democratically elected government in Egypt’s history, to overthrow Gaddafi in Libya, Saddam Hussein in Iraq, in ongoing efforts to overthrow Assad in Syria and the government of Iran, and in failed attempts to overthrow Indonesia’s Sukarno, Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam, and Castro in Cuba.

Posted by: ALAN | Oct 26 2014 9:16 utc | 42

@Fernando | 39

If the Nazis win, then there will be war.

There will be war (whether now or in spring) regardless who wins from US-installed camp. Puppets wont be deciding anything on their own. Sure, radicals may be more inclined to fight than oligarchs like candy-man, but ultimately it will be US who decides, and I dont see them changing neither goals nor means how to achieve them.

Posted by: Harry | Oct 26 2014 9:35 utc | 43

Putin lashes out at US, West for destabilizing world

Thank you President Putin for addressing the subjects you mentioned.

Posted by: really | Oct 26 2014 11:14 utc | 44

For those of us who keep marvelling at how 'dumb' the neo-cons are and their demonstrated ability to achieve only the opposite of their stated goals our friend Joaquin Flores reminds ... don't listen to what they say, watch their hands.

Just as the US is simultaneously 'fighting' and arming ISIS in Syria-Iran so too it appears to be orchestrating the collapse of Ukraine into a Nazi state, and then - just as in Syria-Iran - the US will be warring against the Nazis it financed and armed. All-war all-the-time truly is the object.

Incapable of anything positive at this point the US - like Israel, only larger - is down to purposefully sowing death and devastation worldwide.

The TNCs don't mind at all, destroying governments destroys laws and regulations that inhibit their 'free market' operations ... like buying up the pieces at fire-sale prices.

And the US government wants to be the king of the hill, even if it's the molehill left at the end of its devastation.

Posted by: jfl | Oct 26 2014 13:02 utc | 45

Question: Is the CIA Running a Defamation Campaign Against Russia?

Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 26 2014 13:09 utc | 46

The $3 billion Putin needs to keep the hearth going is making them quite desperate. When they are desperate, that's quite dangerous.

I really think the West wants to highlight the suffering in useful outlets as a form of genocide on the Ukies, while they have been quite sedate about the Eastern front.

Posted by: Ben Franklin | Oct 26 2014 14:19 utc | 47

wayoutwest - looks like a new infestation of the "concern" trolls. They are out in force at The Saker, feigning concern for the people of the Regions, portraying themselves as "true patriots".

This very much reminds me of the zio infestations, whenever the topic is I/P. One common version is the would-be palestinian "sympathizer" who goes on to bash the solidarity activists and/or BDS for being an inadequate tools with too little of a success.

Or, even more germane, the bashers of Snowden and/or Assange "outing" them as secret agents of the cia, nsa or whatever. Typically these types also love to pile on greenwald for this or that reason, as a 'stooge".

Concern trolling has an important role in the information propaganda. Their job is to show up in comment sections and either derail discussions over some moot point, or precipitate a spitball fight which then discourages more serious and knowledgeable posters, or mange to provoke otherwise good commenters into intemperate outbursts, which will then haunt them.

Oh, I am sure people here know a troll when they see one - apologies for preaching to the choir - no one in b's comment sections seems naive in the ways of internet discussions and flame-outs. Still, never hurts to make it a matter of record - again.

Posted by: Merlin2 | Oct 26 2014 15:57 utc | 48

here is a good article on what makes 'conservative' minds tick.

Posted by: carlos | Oct 26 2014 17:05 utc | 49

Putin is absolutely right, in his speech at Valdai, to link the far-right elements in Kiev with the Islamic radicals operating in Syria and elsewhere, and correct again to draw the link between America's amoral support for the Mujaheddin in Afghanistan with where we are today. Putin describes recent world history as it is. This is as opposed to the US Administration, which have a perverted version of history that not even leading US intellectuals can agree with anymore (we all recall Mearshimer's piece on the Ukraine).

People like WayOutWest, who come an show such dear care for Novorussia only when it can be used to somehow smear Russia as "capitalist" and do the familiar DonkeyTale contortions which try to make Russia - a relatively peaceful, (re)developing power that seeks stability with the irrational and ultra-violent USA. Of course it is dishonest concern trolling in the same way that those who declared Syria "weak" for not launching attacks on Israel after Israel bombed what turned out to be chicken coops.

We should not fall for this phony concern trolling when forming our views of what happens between Russia and Novorussia as allies. And make no mistake, they are allies. To suggest that Putin is "scared" of them is preposterous. Putin is making them act rationally and in a way which prevents the situation from getting more out of control. It would be an improvement if Washington could do the same with their Nazi proxies in Kiev. And anyway, as Demian rightfully points out, Putin is popular among the Novorussians - even among those Putin supposedly "sacked".

Such ridiculous claims, especially coming from someone who constantly spins the threat of ISIS (a sign that he is either misinformed or a propagandist pushing an agenda), are not to be taken seriously.

Of course the *real* puppets of the oligarchs are to be found in Kiev, Washington, and London. Putin. put in place by the Russian people and supported by them broadly, has (popularly) put the oligarchs in their place - something that will never happen way out West, where the oligarchs choose the presidents.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 26 2014 17:40 utc | 50

@Merlin2 - right on for noting the phony concern. Like those who declared that the Syrian government was "weak" for not attacking Israel after Israel bombed what turned out to be chicken coops.

Beware internet philosophers trying to air the dirty laundry of two allies! Especially when those two allies are the enemies of the US.

Of course the Novorussian's must follow the lead of Russia. And Russia is of course right to encourage them to act responsibly. It would be nice if Washington would do the same with their Nazi proxies in Kiev.

As for trying to compare the oligarchs of Russia - who are controlled by the government - and those of the US and the west - who choose their governments - there is no comparison. To act as if Russia is "frightened" of the specter of socialism is ridiculous. Russia is still filled with monuments to Lenin. It still has a mighty and active Communist Party. There is no "threat" to Russia from Novorussia, nor in Putin "scared" of them.

They need Russia. Russia needs them.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 26 2014 17:47 utc | 51

Putin is absolutely right to link the Kiev regime's Nazi allies and ISIS. They are the same phenomenon - far-right movements supported by the US deep state.

A unilateral diktat and imposing one’s own models produces the opposite result. Instead of settling conflicts it leads to their escalation, instead of sovereign and stable states we see the growing spread of chaos, and instead of democracy there is support for a very dubious public ranging from open neo-fascists to Islamic radicals.

Why do they support such people? They do this because they decide to use them as instruments along the way in achieving their goals but then burn their fingers and recoil. I never cease to be amazed by the way that our partners just keep stepping on the same rake, as we say here in Russia, that is to say, make the same mistake over and over.

They once sponsored Islamic extremist movements to fight the Soviet Union. Those groups got their battle experience in Afghanistan and later gave birth to the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. The West if not supported, at least closed its eyes, and, I would say, gave information, political and financial support to international terrorists’ invasion of Russia (we have not forgotten this) and the Central Asian region’s countries. Only after horrific terrorist attacks were committed on US soil itself did the United States wake up to the common threat of terrorism. Let me remind you that we were the first country to support the American people back then, the first to react as friends and partners to the terrible tragedy of September 11.

Putin deals with reality. The US administration deals with phony and self-serving illusions.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 26 2014 17:51 utc | 52

Don Bacon;At least those old Americans worked for American interests instead of the current crop of Israeli moles,who are correctly called neolibcons as in what's the diff?
And India just rejected American missiles for Israeli,oh the Islamic hatred ties that bind.

Posted by: dahoit | Oct 26 2014 18:13 utc | 53

The difference between Russian and the US behavior on the world stage shouldn't really need to be spelled out as it is so obvious. To speak of "Russian and American imperialism" in the same breath ... it just doesn't pass the sniff test.

Especially considering we watch the increasingly long list of US sponsored coups, overthrows, sponsored insurgencies, and outright aggressions since the fall of the Soviet Union.

It's a favorite tactic of those phony leftists like you can find over at Lousy Louie's Proyect's, and, increasingly often, here at MoA.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 26 2014 18:14 utc | 54

Unless the real goal is not gaining ground, per se but to blame "the Russians" for breaking the fake truce and then launch some new additional regime of sanctions.

Posted by: nomas | Oct 26 2014 18:39 utc | 55

seems like all pro america parties is going to win big, no wonder with the war on the east.

Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 26 2014 18:44 utc | 56

@guest77 -- # 7
This cannot go on as it is. There will be a clash, and we should all pray that it doesn't become one of nuclear arms., Oct 26
Ukraine’s Civil War Is Restarting

Ukrainian Government is said to have air-dropped leaflets: “leave or die.”

Introductory note by Eric Zuesse: Below is from a recent day’s report by the Belarusian (or “Byelorussian”) management-consulting firm Geopolitics, a site which often posts the most-penetrating daily reports and analyses of the Ukrainian civil war, with a dozen or more articles written by various Belarusian academics. One of these news reports, shown below, is provocatively headlined “War will begin on Monday”; another is titled, “Kiev is preparing to capture Donetsk, and it will be the biggest defeat for #russia since 1991”; yet a third is “Donbass pending decisive assault”. So, some of these articles focus on the historical importance of the events. . .

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 26 2014 19:26 utc | 57

The Pentagon will be ready.
Stripes, Oct 25
Officials break ground on hospital to replace Landstuhl

RHINE ORDNANCE BARRACKS, Germany — After more than a year of delays, American and German officials heaved the first shovels of dirt Friday to mark the symbolic start of construction on a nearly billion-dollar U.S. military hospital here.

Expected to open in 2022, the new facility will replace the Army’s aging Landstuhl Regional Medical Center and the Air Force’s medical clinic at Ramstein Air Base, both of which were built in the 1950s and cost millions of dollars a year to maintain.

Work at the new hospital site began in earnest in February after the U.S. military and its German counterparts laid out plans to mitigate the project’s environmental impact, allaying the concerns of environmental groups whose lawsuits had stalled the project.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 26 2014 19:39 utc | 58

To Don Bacon @ 55

Interesting post, a no. of separate reports, I liked the one from predicting further ineffectiveness and division over spoils and all-around political infighting. The site's report on early election returns has the Opposition Bloc as well as "Svoboda" making it in. Of the new Rada, it says "the new parliament will be biased towards the patriotic and nationalist spectrum, as similar ideology is now practiced in one way or another all the leading Ukrainian parties."

Posted by: rufus magister | Oct 26 2014 20:28 utc | 59

@guest77 #48:

It is worth noting that our new defender of Novorossiyans made his appearance in these hallowed halls by informing us that Iran is running death squads inside Iraq.

Eloquent observations about Russia and socialism. Russia has done a considerably better job of Vergangenheitsbewältigung than Germany. If Germans had truly come to terms with their past, they would understand that, by allowing themselves to be occupied by the Empire, they have no moral superiority over their Nazi grandparents.

Posted by: Demian | Oct 26 2014 20:34 utc | 60

off topic, but only just

Posted by: john | Oct 26 2014 21:05 utc | 61

per RT:
Poroshenko Bloc leading in Ukraine elections, 7 parties to enter Rada – exit polls



top three are pro-EU

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 26 2014 21:15 utc | 62

@59 don bacon.. i thought it was outlawed in ukraine to be pro-russian, or russian anything? pro-eu is pretty irrelevant in that context..

Posted by: james | Oct 26 2014 21:29 utc | 63

@57 - TL;DR The USSR is regarded quite highly in much of the world, and for good reason.

___ I wrote the following, I just wanted to make it smaller so as not to take up too much space___

It is not just my opinion that the successors to the Soviets have little Vergangenheitsbewältigung to deal with.

Consider the view of the USSR in the third world, where it was instrumental in defeating imperialism during the liberation movements of the 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s. There are still, in many countries from Africa to Europe to Asia, and South America, thriving Communist parties and socialist movements that look at the USSR as a positive role-model. And to those countries, many of them ruined by capitalism and imperialism, with much of their populations reduced to absolute poverty and their countries stripped of all sovereignty - they are correct.

Consider the view of the USSR inside some of the former Soviet Union. As a society, a majority feel that the post-war Soviet Union was the best of recent times. The comparisons of the Soviet Union to the 1990s - the betrayal, the theft, the shock therapy - all made the Soviet times look like a paradise in comparison. It is only now that Russian's have a state they can be proud of, a state that is growing with vastly improved social conditions - a condition that was made possible by Russia reversing or watering down the so-called "reforms" of the 1990s.

The USSR under Stalin suffered greatly, but these were the Soviet people suffering. The cult of personality and the repression - all acknowledged by Khruschev and reversed - showed that the USSR was capable of change. But much of the "horrors" did not happen as presented in the West. Much is crude propaganda - numbers that claim that Stalin "killed" "20-100 million" people are simply ridiculous and crass. Meant to present Stalin not even as Hitler's equal in horror, but as worse than him. Considering the help offered Hitler by the west, considering that the ideology of Communism is THE threat to capitalism while Naziism is capitalism's thick-necked enforcer: it is easy to see why this *must* be the narrative. "Hitler was bad" goes the story "but he was only trying to defeat the greater evil". Recall the Ukrainian mayor declaring how Hitler "liberated" the Ukraine - such filth which would have earned the speaker a punch in the face - has gone mainstream.

The USSR was not a perfect country any more than the USA. Many of the commitments in its constitution were not lived up to. But then, how long did it take the USA to live up to the words "All men are created equal..."? All countries are works in progress, all constitutions are documents that define the ambitions of countries and are made true only by hard work. And this applied to the Soviet Union as well. Unfortunately, the USSR never knew a day of peace, and not because it didn't seek peace. It was the victim - in it's brief 70 years - of a foreign invasion of 18 countries and a civil war, constant sabotage and propaganda, the world's most vicious military campaign leading to the destruction of the country comparable (in the words of JFK) equivalent to everything east of Chicago in the US being completely destroyed, and finally a long, bitter Cold War in which the world's greatest military and economic power, linking with the Nazi remnants and immoral forces all over the world, pushed the USSR - poor and attempting to rebuild, and committed to never facing another such invasion - to an arms race and to the economic breaking point.

And whats more, the break up of the USSR, though and awful, embarrasing tragedy - especially considering what followed - deserve praise for achieving a relatively peaceful break up. Save Chechnya, an internal civil war inside Russia which produced the casualties of one of the smaller US aggressions in Central America, the break up of a country joined together for 1000 years was astonishingly bloodless. Compare it to the bloody break up of the Portuguese or the British Empires. Compare it to the French wars in Algeria and Vietnam. The actual break up, though it happend through the machinations of traitors and for the most part against the will of the population, is one of the greatest feats of peace and statesmanship in world history. There were of course states that wanted out, but a close look at the politcs of states such as the Baltics show large support for opposition parties, left wing groups. Even in those countries, their is considerable nostalgia for the Soviet period. This applies to Eastern Europe as well - the left parties in Germany are still strongest in former East Germany, the country we constantly hear about in terms of being "Stasi State" (considering that the country was a socialist state which had just been under Nazi rule and threatened constantly by sabotage and spying, the Stast makes much more sense).

No, it is only in the USA, in far-right enclaves in South America, and amongst the European elite that people buy into the "Soviet Union is comparable to Nazi Germany" pack of lies. A pack of lies based on historical distortions and outright lies of those master "Big Liars" the Nazis themselves.

The fact is that, when the history is written 300 years from now (should we survive till then, and should our history), it will show the USSR as the progressive power that was instrumental in ending the European Empires. A country that sparked and lead a movement for independent development and international justice. The country that lead a genuine revolution that was snuffed out by the bloodiest counter-revolution ever waged in world-history (a counter-revolution which continues today).

I believe that depending how vicious and bloody the USA's decline is, the USSR will be historically rehabilitated and considered a martyr for the best aspirations of humanity, if not its realization.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 26 2014 21:57 utc | 64

The German attack on Moscow was in Nov.-Dec. 1941, and it was of course not successful. On the other hand, the Russian counterattack on the Stalingrad front was in Nov.-Jan. 1942-3, and it was eminently successful.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 26 2014 22:18 utc | 65

The Nazis attacked when they did (bad weather over Christmastime 1944), because the Allies had overwhelming air superiority.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 26 2014 22:21 utc | 66

@guest77 #61:

I agree with everything you say. And even my father, who wanted to enlist with the Germans and didn't only because a German officer told him that that would be crazy, and who worked for a US defense contractor, told me before the USSR collapsed that the USSR was necessary, because a counterweight to US power was needed.

Since the Ukraine crisis, I have changed my view of the Soviet Union considerably, mostly due to reading MoA.

Posted by: Demian | Oct 26 2014 22:32 utc | 67

I normally don't like this author, but this is brilliant. I know some here disagree with the concept of blowback, but I think he is getting at something deeper - the post-war transformation of the USA:

....conflict for conflict's sake became the operational ethos in Vietnam and Laos and Cambodia and Africa and South America and Central America and especially in the Middle East for decades, and in the process of this multi-generational permanent state of conflict the weapons manufacturers became wealthier and wealthier, and more and more powerful..., when you sit in the darkness of your personal night and wonder what happened to your country, to your aspirations and dreams, to the potholed road you drive every day to the job that has no chance of letting you retire in comfort, to your barren savings account, when you turn on your television and see paid shills shriek about how and why you're about to die while your neighbor's kid comes home in a flag-draped box and you have to ask again where your black suit is so you can go properly dressed to yet another funeral...

...remember that history exists, and actions have consequences, and this event is tied to that event is tied to the other event in a tapestry of escalating cascading fallout, which is called "blowback," which always carries a dear price unless you're getting paid for it, which is why you think very hard before making a lethal national decision, because every lethal decision always comes knocking at your door someday...

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 26 2014 22:36 utc | 68

link for @65:

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 26 2014 22:36 utc | 69

@59 definitely not a good idea to vote pro-Russia. Which probably accounts for the 40% turnout.

Posted by: dh | Oct 26 2014 22:39 utc | 70

@64 Thank you Demian. That's fantastic. People from the Baltics are victims of that phony history, and it is a shame. But there is a reason that nationalism is considered by many to be a vice: because it encourages people to trade truth for pride.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 26 2014 22:49 utc | 71

@guest77 #65:

Yeah, I thought that was right on the mark, too. (I came to it through An inspired piece of writing.

Posted by: Demian | Oct 26 2014 23:12 utc | 72


Yes, it is important to go to the original source on these. As someone mentioned, Mr. Feely at InformationClearningHouse rarely provides and easy way to get to the original source of his content.

Wether he has a deal with the authors, I don't know. If not, it's too bad, because it is easy to do and his site is quite good (he really picks up on amazing articles, especially in each days "second section") and he should be respectful of others work.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 26 2014 23:18 utc | 73

Poetic and true except for calling it blowback. It isn't really blowback when intended consequences have been factored into the plot from the beginning.

The chaos that results from the "fracturing of Nation States" has been stated clearly in the Yinon Plan.

Posted by: fast freddy | Oct 26 2014 23:24 utc | 74

It's Newton's Third Law: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. IOW randomly killing them over there so they wouldn't randomly kill us here wasn't a good strategy.

from the web:
Within 72 hours, two members of the Canadian Armed Forces were attacked and killed on the soil of Canada for no reason other than that they wore the uniform of the Canadian military. --See if you can spot the irony.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 27 2014 0:05 utc | 75

OT but, congratulations to Dilma Rouseff and Brazil on her reelection. Her opponent has graciously conceded defeat so a color revolution over a 'fraudulent' election is out of the picture. Not knowing much about Brazilian politics, I can't really say if a Neves victory would really have been a serious setback for the BRICS. It might be that as a state, Brazil would not want to burn its trade ties with Russia and China and perhaps Neves would have understood that and acted accordingly. But better to be on the safe side. Dilma's speech at the UN last year calling the US out on mass surveillance earned her a special place for me.

Posted by: Lysander | Oct 27 2014 0:09 utc | 76

Rousseff has sided with Putin and the BRICS bank and Putin, a(nother) bad signal to the US.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 27 2014 0:25 utc | 77

She sided with Putin twice, apparently.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 27 2014 0:26 utc | 78

A quick "thanks" to the poster, who, some while back, recomended Steven Kinzer, and his book "Overthrow", here at MoA. Beautifully researched and written, anyone who has read it, will understand the Empire's motives and methods in the Ukraine. I sincerly hope Russia, will, no matter the cost, challenge the Empire's world hegemony dreams.

Posted by: ben | Oct 27 2014 0:39 utc | 79

The blowback is also local, wherever the US overthrows a government and then has to fight the "insurgents" who resist outside interference. That's why the Pentagon needs a new billion-dollar hospital in Germany. In that vein I've always been partial to Mike Hastie. "One day while I was in a bunker in Vietnam, a sniper round went over my head. The person who fired that weapon was not a terrorist, a rebel, an extremist, or a so-called insurgent. The Vietnamese individual who tried to kill me was a citizen of Vietnam, who did not want me in his country. This truth escapes millions." --Mike Hastie, U.S. Army Medic, Vietnam 1970-71

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 27 2014 0:47 utc | 80

I know that you guys have already mentioned most of this, but I was kind of surprised that b, having been a member of the German army, wasn't aware of the principles of war on the eastern front in WW2. In summer and winter you can fight because the ground is hard. In spring and autumn, you can't because of the mud. Evidently today things have changed, because of the number of hard roads.

Not to criticise b, a great host.Impossible to give a perfect post every time.

Posted by: Laguerre | Oct 27 2014 0:54 utc | 81

Is General Winter on Russia's side?
Telegraph, Oct 26

For a few months each year, Russian leaders have always been able to call upon a formidable military commander who saw off Napoleon and Hitler. General Winter, the most dangerous and annually reliable soldier in Russia’s army, specialises in using snow-drifts, ice-clad roads and bone-chilling temperatures to freeze invading armies in their tracks. Not once has he let Russia down.

Very soon, President Vladimir Putin will be hoping to give General Winter a new task. Instead of halting an invasion, his mission will be to join Russia’s struggle against Ukraine and the West. . .

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 27 2014 1:15 utc | 82

DB @ 77: "This truth escapes millions." --Mike Hastie, U.S. Army Medic, Vietnam 1970-71"

Yep, as do other obivious truths in the United States of Facade.

Posted by: ben | Oct 27 2014 1:48 utc | 83

@Demian, 26:

Thank you for the cached link—I had read of Peter Haisenko’s revelations before, but it’s interesting to see how they very briefly surfaced in the corporate media, only to be scuttled immediately.

When I learn of false flag and other atrocity operations like this, part of me knows “there’s a war on”—carry on, people die, most innocent and often unaware even of what’s happening (as with those on MH17): “Pray for the dead, and fight like hell for the living.” Then there’s another part of me whose blood quietly boils, imagining war crimes tribunals…

By the way, is Vintage Red anything like Deep Red?

No, but Deep Red sounds like a wild movie!

An old friend who knows my politics, my tastes in wine and my perspective on deep history once called me a Vintage Red. When I first discovered this site and got the Brecht lyric references, I figured that might be a good nom-du-bar.

[raising my glass]

In vino veritas!

Posted by: Vintage Red | Oct 27 2014 2:29 utc | 84

@guest77, comment 61:

Excellent overview of the USSR and it legacy. Revolutionary processes develop and each culture's revolution not only has to build from its own historical inheritance, but also in a planetary context influenced by the global class struggle, not to mention overall development of forces and relations of production. Similarly blockquoting myself to save space, in addition to the factors you mention above:

1) The US didn’t defeat the USSR in any kind of “fair competition.” The USSR had a big territory but a population emerging from feudal poverty and over a decade of war and civil war. Resources spent on military defense were deducted from immediate living standards, infrastructure, growth, research...
The US established its economic and technological superiority by genocidally stealing its continental “homeland” and enslaving tens of millions from another continent, by supplanting its imperial rivals (even as an “ally”!) in two world wars, by the financial hegemony of the dollar, by scientific “brain drain,” with the most high tech media-propaganda machine in human history (Goebbels would've gone green with envy), and of course having an economy that was generally “stimulated” by military spending.
The US competed with most of the planet’s resources in its service; the USSR was by comparison self-reliant. In the US Army I heard the USSR described as “a third world country with nukes and a big army.” My reply: “Well, if socialism can allow a third world country to give the US, with a 140-year head start, a good run for its debased money, there must be something to it, eh?”

2) However hard Soviet workers were driven (compared with western workers under corporate bosses), the overwhelming majority took on this labor discipline proudly and unflinchingly as they knew they were not toiling for a shareholder’s profit margin but for their and their children’s future.

3) The first few capitalist revolutions against feudalism didn’t survive either, at least not intact; neither were they particularly gentle or polished—before Napoleon, consider Cromwell. Only after capitalist economic relations deepened and strengthened to become the dominant system on the planet did its political manifestations become secure enough to look and act more “civilized,” at least in its imperial centers.
I sense a comparable development dynamic for socialism. The (very) big questions in my mind are time-sensitive challenges posed by capitalist destruction of the environment and the threat of nuclear war by a desperate, vicious, and bloody Wall Street/Military-Industrial Complex.

4) The USSR as such existed for about 74 years. The US had its Civil War 85 years after coming into existence. The Russian Revolution is far from over. Same for the Chinese Revolution, and for all others one can name…
(I’ve loved seeing the looks on US right wingers’ faces who think "history ended" when I bring this up—-…)

I especially second your final point. Although US by citizenship I was born in Venezuela, and take great heart in seeing a strong southern pole of socialism for a new century being forged there, and throughout Latin America. ¡Hasta la victoria siempre!

Posted by: Vintage Red | Oct 27 2014 3:15 utc | 85

Russian Spring


Summary from fronts by combatant Prokhorov

No deliveries today to besieged Ukrainian outpost 32, Bakhmutka (near settlement Sleloye, Lugansk). A group of military engineers (sappers), their carriers, armor shielding them – Cossacks burned these all…

The sappers had losses. A supplies convoy did not even move ahead. Despite Poroshenko’s personal order, the besieged did not get anything – drink marsh water filtered through gas-masks. The number of fallen reached 14. This is without lost by unblocking forces.

Besides outpost 32, a discotheque was going and in Nikishino, and in Debal`tsevo. The evening one has just started in Debal`tsevo. Ukrainians anticipate a storm of Debal`tsevo in three days.

Russian Spring


Situation overview from 1st Inter-Brigade of South-East:

No significant bombardment was detected in Donetsk today. Instead, increased activity of Saboteur-Reconnaissance Groups was reported; these tried to infiltrate the city and the territory of airport. The work of unmanned aircraft over the capital of Donetsk Republic was also reported.

The Ukrainian artillery pacified in Avdeevka. However, reinforcement in personnel and hardware was arriving.

During night a violent fight with punitive troops of battalion “Aidar” erupted in Schast`ye, Lugansk. Several nazis were taken prisoners.

Situation intensified in direction of Mariupol`. Shelling of Ukrainian fortifications was reported.

Posted by: Fete | Oct 27 2014 4:06 utc | 86

@Vintage Red: thanks, those are excellent additions.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 27 2014 6:03 utc | 87

Wow is b off on this one!

This will be Kiev's revenge for Stalingrad, supplied to the hilt with USUK weaponry, their soldiers being trained in winter warfare by USUKIL in Poland, and USIL satellites overhead.
USIL has no doubt established HUMINT and SIGINT by now, and you can expect USEU to throw a new sanctions attack any moment. Think Battle of the Bulge, only this time, the Nazis win.

Posted by: ChipNikh | Oct 27 2014 6:50 utc | 88

The impression I get - probably because it is the one I am meant to get - is that Russia will intervene if Donetsk or Lugansk are invested by the Nazis and stories of war crimes begin to emerge. But other than that, Russia is leaving the East to their own devices and they seem to be managing quite well.

The fact is that Russia does not want war, while a full on war between the two most important ex-Soviet states is surely beyond the wildest wet dreams of even the most aggressive Cold War CIA operative.

The US, once again is using its geographic shielding to ignite chaos as "strategy". That Europe goes along with swatting the nuclear armed bear in the nose is evidence that they are mere colonies of the United States at this point.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 27 2014 7:21 utc | 89

@ChipNikh, 85:

Even if the worst happened, a "Battle of the Bulge, only this time, the Nazis win", I remember back in the late Spring reading statements from militia fighters that if the junta overran Donetsk and Lugansk entirely, resistance would continue as urban guerrilla warfare, and that it would be protracted (Northern Ireland was cited as an example of what to expect). This was meant as a grim worst case scenario, but mainly to illustrate the determination never to surrender to fascism.

Western intelligence and sanctions would have to be cranked up an order of magnitude in effectiveness to begin to register. Both the US and RF have satellites overhead, nothing has changed in orbit. As far as "supplied to the hilt with USUK weaponry" I've not seen direct evidence of that--more of supplying Poland, Romania, Croatia, etc., with NATO weaponry so that these countries can send their old Warsaw Pact-era weapons to the Ukraine, thus preserving plausible deniability.

The Nazis better watch out what they wish for. The People's Republics have already shown they can deliver revenge piping hot; I'm sure they can dish it out biting cold as well...

Posted by: Vintage Red | Oct 27 2014 8:46 utc | 90

@ben #76

I second your thanks ben. I haven't finished it yet and am still reading it but so far think it is a balanced and valuable contribution to understanding America's rise to the status of global empire. It is also easy and good reading. I believe it was Malooga who recommended it. I know it was he that recommended "the Cancer Stage of Capitalism" by John McMurtry, which offers the model of capitalism as a malignant system that is metastasizing globally. Much more difficult reading and poorly edited but IMO extremely valuable nonetheless.

Posted by: juannie | Oct 27 2014 11:31 utc | 91

I’m also very perplexed at the ‘new offensive’ chatter or predictions. I can’t see it. Kiev ‘lost’ once and it is out of ressources (or whatever) and while some factions (fascists, etc.) may want more war, there is also the general population who is against it and may take *very badly* to continuation, this point is vital. The US obviously wants to keep Poroshenko (for now anyway), Poroshenko has been running a fine line trying to keep all the allowed sides on board, either under orders to do so, and/or for his own interests. The election results are being spun as Pro-West Pro-Peace, a real ‘victory.’ Russia of course does not want to be dragged in more than they are already, as has been stated ad nauseam. The EU, if it could defend its own interests, would also wish an end to hostilities. What is difficult to understand - for me anyway - is the structure and role of Svoboda/Pravy Sektor (not as pol parties but as groups of ppl) and where the nexus of their control lies. On the one hand, they represent an anti-Poroshenko force and hold him hostage to some degree, which is a natural, traditional role for such groups (who tend to remain in opposition, stir up trouble, etc.) On the other hand….such groups can go overboard, or be pushed to do so instantly, and therein lies their threat/hold. Who controls them? - All this independently of Jack Frost.

Posted by: Noirette | Oct 27 2014 13:18 utc | 92


Ukraine have just vote parties that are for war into power, do the math.

Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 27 2014 13:58 utc | 93


It was 'over' in Syria too... except not.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 27 2014 14:35 utc | 94

What choice does Poroshenko have? The two eastern provinces have rejected the option of autonomy within Ukraine, opting for independence which Ukraine can't allow. In fact it wants Crimea back. The recent election gives Poro the majority he needs in the parliament, and a pro-EU coalition is being formed. Of course nobody wants war, but ...

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 27 2014 15:22 utc | 95

Don@92 - it looks like there is a head-on-head race going 0n between Poroschenk and Yatsenyuk. Both their parties are approx. at 21.5%. That might still change as not even 50% of the votes seem to have been counted, so that might still change again. But it might really get tight for Poroschenko, its even possible that Yats migth be ahead if the trend continues.

Posted by: Fran | Oct 27 2014 15:47 utc | 96

Don Bacon:

The two eastern provinces have rejected the option of autonomy within Ukraine

They have said that officially? Link please.

Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 27 2014 15:48 utc | 97

No russian distress call behind sub hunt (it's in Swedish).

This after the newspaper Svenska Dagbladet, citing "several persons with knowledge about the ongoing search operation”, revealed that russian radio coms were intercepted prior to the search for a "foreign vessel".

Won't change the cold-war rhetoric, the masses still believe that Russia violated Sweden's territorial waters, proof or no proof, and is ever increasing its sphere of influence in the Baltic sea and beyond.

Posted by: never mind | Oct 27 2014 15:49 utc | 98

@89- My understanding is that the US controls pravy and svoboda, and my guess would be they will be used along the same lines as Isis in Syria/Iraq- from freedom fighters to bogeymen.

Posted by: Nana2007 | Oct 27 2014 15:51 utc | 99

Radio coms can be spoofed.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 27 2014 16:21 utc | 100

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