Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
September 19, 2022

Putin's Press Conference On Ukraine, Terrorism, Fertilizer, Europe's Energy Crisis

Last week the Head of States Council of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization met in Samarkand. The meeting was not very remarkable. It was business as usual. Iran will soon join the organization and several other states want association agreements with it.

An important side event was a non-scripted press conference President Vladimir Putin of the Russian Federation held. There is a video with English subtitles that covers it and the Kremlin provides as usual an English language transcript. Putin made some important points that were not reflected in 'western' news coverage as they contradicted the propaganda positions the 'western' media have taken. Below I excerpted parts and added a few comments.

On the SCO:

Vladimir Putin: The most important thing always and everywhere is economic development. And the SCO, cooperation with the SCO countries, creates conditions for the development of the Russian economy, and thus for the social sphere and for resolving the tasks related to improving the living standards of our citizens.

The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation includes countries whose population, as has been said many times, comprises almost or even slightly more than half of humanity. It is 25 percent of world GDP. And, most importantly, the national economies in the region, those of the SCO member states, are developing much faster than others in the world.

The SCO markets are were global economic growth is happening. But the 'west' is excluding itself from those regions. 'Western' policies are hostile towards many of the big SCO members. Those policies build up barriers that hinder 'western' industries to profit from that growth. These are self-defeating measures.

There is a question about military strikes within Russia. Putin didn't seem bothered too much about those.

There is nothing new about this. Frankly, I find it even a bit strange to hear your question because Western countries have cultivated the idea of the collapse of the Soviet Union and historical Russia and Russia as such, its nucleus.

I have already cited these statements and studies by some figures in Great Britain during World War I and after it. I cited excerpts from Mr Brzezinski’s writings in which he divided the entire territory of our country into specific parts. True, later he changed his position a bit in the belief that it was better to keep Russia in opposition to China and use it as a tool to combat China. It will never happen.
But they have always been seeking the dissolution of our country – this is very true. It is unfortunate that at some point they decided to use Ukraine for these purposes. [...] This is what some US-led Western countries have always been seeking – to create an anti-Russia enclave and rock the boat, threaten Russia from this direction. In essence, our main goal is to prevent such developments.
In the course of this, we are seeing attempts to perpetrate terrorist attacks and damage our civilian infrastructure.

Indeed, we were quite restrained in our response, but that will not last forever. Recently, Russian Armed Forces delivered a couple of sensitive blows to that area. Let’s call them warning shots. If the situation continues like that, our response will be more impactful.

On Saturday the Russian military destroyed electricity distribution systems at a power plant in Slaviansk. Dima of the Military Summary channel showed two open source pictures provided by NASA that demonstrate problems with the Ukrainian electricity network. Especially in the east the lights are going out.

September 17 2021

Source: NASA - bigger
September 17 2022

Source: NASA - bigger

The attack on Slaviansk followed after several Ukrainian attacks on electricity infrastructure in Russia and in areas under Russian control.

Putin mentions such attacks and calls them terrorism:

Terrorist attacks are a serious matter. In fact, it is about using terrorist methods. We see this in the killing of officials in the liberated territories, we even see attempts at perpetrating terrorist attacks in the Russian Federation, including – I am not sure if this was made public – attempts to carry out terrorist attacks near our nuclear facilities, nuclear power plants in the Russian Federation. I am not even talking about the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant.

We are monitoring the situation and will do our best to prevent a negative scenario from unfolding. We will respond if they fail to realise that these approaches are unacceptable. They are, in fact, no different than terrorist attacks.

In early August some Ukrainian commandos had destroyed high power lines from the Kursk Nuclear Power Plant.

In the Kursk region of Russia, Ukrainian saboteurs blew up power transmission lines that feed the Kursk nuclear power plant, the press service of the Federal Security Bureau of Russia said.

According to the agency, on August 4, 9 and 12, six explosions took place in the Kurchatov district of the Kursk region. The explosions were conducted targeting high-voltage power lines.
A criminal case was filed into the incident under Part 2 of Article 205 (Terrorist Attack) of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. Security forces are looking for saboteurs. The National Guard have strengthened the security of nuclear facilities.

Back to Putin's press conference.

He gets asked about some negotiation paper Ukraine had put out. He has not seen it but he explains what happened with negotiations in late March/early April:

Frankly, I am not familiar with what they have come up with this time. We, in fact, started with this when we were negotiating with the incumbent Kiev authorities and, in fact, completed this negotiating process in Istanbul with the well-known Istanbul agreement, after which we withdrew our troops from Kiev in order to create the proper conditions for concluding this agreement. Instead of concluding an agreement, Kiev immediately turned down all agreements, shoved them into a box and said they would not seek any agreement with Russia, but instead would pursue victory on the battlefield. Let them try.

The Ukrainian turn about came in early April after then UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson threatened Kiev with withholding all 'western' support.

Putin says the Special Military Operation will continue without a change in the plans.

Putin later remarks on the deal to let Ukraine export its grains:

As of today – as of yesterday or the day before – 121 ships left Ukrainian ports. Only three of the 120 ships headed for the poorest countries under the UN food programme. Some 35 percent, maybe a bit more, of the grain exported from Ukraine went to European countries, to non-poor countries, and definitely not to the world’s poorest countries. And only 4.5 percent of the shipments were sent to the poorest countries under the UN programme.
The same applies to our fertiliser exports. This is something unprecedented. I would say this has been an outrageous and shameful decision by the European Commission to lift the ban on the purchase of Russian fertilisers – but solely for their countries, for EU member states. But what about the world’s poorest countries?
So they have lifted sanctions on our fertilisers. The Americans were actually the first to lift them, since they are generally pragmatic people.
[B]ut there are still issues as regards freight and insurance plus the existing ban on entering our ports where our fertilisers are exported from, as well as on financial transfers and settlements. They are aware of this all and keep saying this problem will be solved, but no one is actually doing anything about it.

To be fair, the UN Secretary-General is taking efforts to solve these issues.

This scandal was news to me:

You have probably heard about 300,000 tonnes of Russian fertiliser stuck in European ports; our companies are saying they are ready to provide it for free – just unblock and release it, and we will donate it to the poorest countries and to developing markets. But they are still holding it, and this is absolutely astonishing.

They do not want Russia to earn money – but we are not making a profit by giving away fertiliser. I just do not get what they are doing. What is the purpose of all this? There has been so much talk about providing help to the poorest countries, but exactly the opposite is actually happening.

I have the impression – and this is particularly true for European countries – that these former colonial powers are still living in the paradigm of colonial philosophy, and they are used to living at the expense of others. They still fail to get rid of this paradigm in their daily policies. But it is time to draw certain conclusions and act differently, in a more civilised manner.

There follow questions on China, the Azerbaijan-Armenia conflict, U.S. sanctions against certain persons and their kids and about the G-20.

Then follows a last question about the energy crisis in Europe about which Putin had a lot to say:

The energy crisis in Europe did not begin with the start of Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine, in Donbass; it actually started much earlier, a year before or even earlier. As strange as it may seem, it started with the green agenda.
To pursue momentary political considerations, they chose to completely close down the hydrocarbon energy programmes in their countries. Banks stopped extending loans, ...
Now, we see that prices, say, for natural gas in the United States have risen and production is growing, but not as fast as they would like it to – and the reason is that banks are afraid to issue loans.
These are erroneous reference points in the green agenda, rushing things, and the green energy being unprepared to meet to the demand for huge energy resources to support economic and industrial growth. The economy is growing while the energy sector is shrinking. This is the first drastic mistake.

The second mistake concerns natural gas.

We made attempts to persuade the Europeans to focus on long-term contracts rather than solely on the market. Why? I said it before and will repeat it once again: Gazprom needs to invest billions in development but it must be confident that it will sell gas before making investments. This is what long-term contracts are about.

Mutual obligations are incurred by the sellers and the buyers. They said, “No, let the market regulate itself.“ We kept telling them, “Don't do it or it will lead to drastic consequences.” But in fact, they forced us to include a significant share of the spot price in the contract price. They forced us to do this, and Gazprom had to include both the oil and oil product basket but also the spot price in the gas price. The spot price began to grow, causing the increase in the price envisaged even in long-term contracts. But what does it have to do with us? This is the first thing.

Putin is right with this. The privatization and 'liberalization' of the European gas and electricity markets has never made sense and has indeed had very negative consequences.

Second, I told them many times. “Gazprom is not supplying gas.” Look, are you normal people or what? Poland chose to impose sanctions against the Yamal-Europe gas pipeline and shut off the route. I told Mr [German Chancellor Olaf] Scholz: “Why are you calling me? Call Warsaw and ask them to reopen the route.” That is all there is to it. That’s the first.

Scholz is really that dumb?

Second. Two lines of the gas pipeline run through Ukraine. Ukraine is being supplied with weapons, but it went ahead and closed one of the lines for them. They also shut off another line that supplied 25 billion cubic metres of gas – I will not talk about the exact amount, but they shut off the entire route. What for? Call Kiev and ask them to reopen the second line.

And finally, Nord Stream 1. One turbine goes out of order after another.

Siemens has the maintenance contract for the turbine pressure pumps but sanctions are prevent it from fulfilling it.

There is of course a solution for the lack of natural gas in Europe.

After all, if they need it urgently, if things are so bad, just go ahead and lift sanctions against Nord Stream 2, with its 55 billion cubic metres per year – all they have to do is press the button and they will get it going. But they chose to shut it off themselves; they cannot repair one pipeline and imposed sanctions against the new Nord Stream 2 and will not open it. Are we to blame for this?

Let them think hard about who is to blame and let none of them blame us for their own mistakes. Gazprom and Russia have always fulfilled and will fulfil all obligations under our agreements and contracts, with no failures ever.

It is indeed a sign of cowardice that European politicians blame Russia for problems they themselves have caused. They try to hide it but the facts are all there to point that out. Should Europe really run into energy problems during the winter the political punishment they will receive will be remorseless.

Posted by b on September 19, 2022 at 17:10 UTC | Permalink

next page »

I still don't understand why there's no tit for tat in the Russian responses, or even a more proactive approach to the SMO. If they took out the electricity network in Western Ukraine, would it not have choked off the weapon and hardware supplies months ago? Taking out the rail network would have made quite a difference. It seems like by far the most obvious choice.

Posted by: V87 | Sep 19 2022 17:27 utc | 1

It is not a question of if there will be energy problems in Europe this winter.
It is a question of how bad the problems are.
Will it just be the de-industrialization of Germany via mass bankruptcy of the Mittelstadt and large companies in Germany? The small ones are already dying. Plus a few hundred poor pensioners?
Or will it be thousands of Germans dying?

Posted by: c1ue | Sep 19 2022 17:33 utc | 2

I pay around 80 to $90 {converted} for a 1000 C M of Ru gaz in my flat . What do others pay ? Last I read , Russia was giving Serbia 1000 C M for $400 per 1000 CM and they made a good deal. Say that a normal flat in Serbia would use 200- 250 C M a month, I wonder if the government subsidises some of the cost of that, like Ukraine did before the IMF took over.

Posted by: GMC | Sep 19 2022 17:35 utc | 3

And then is this:

"“The loss of trust is so fundamental that there will never again be a situation in which a German federal government can rely on energy from Russia,”

As a German ex-pat, I am ashamed of the level of idiocy that is displayed by politicians at all levels of government.
Those morons slap sanctions on their main supplier, wonder why they no longer are supplied with essential sources of energy, and blame the victim of those sanctions for obviously reacting and not willing to give away for free, or declining to receive sensitive equipment that is treated in violation of stipulated delivery contracts?

This fellow is a prime example of what the political class in Germany after giants like Brandt, Wehner, Schmidt, and even Adenauer or Erhardt has come to. Garbage that only deserves to be "entsorgt" as a biohazard.

Posted by: Peter M | Sep 19 2022 17:36 utc | 4

V87 | Sep 19 2022 17:27 utc | 1

The RF is teaching compassion...As the classic bujutsu say, "A warrior's compassion is true compassion."

Posted by: donten | Sep 19 2022 17:38 utc | 5

There are many reasons why attacking Ukrainian infrastructure is counterproductive:
1) the trains are bringing Ukrainian troops to the artillery that is demolishing them. Why interrupt? Otherwise it would be required to go to where the troops are.
2) destroying the infrastructure kills lots of civilians and causes mass suffering for the remainder. Even for those Ukrainians who are neither Russian speaking nor rabid Atlanticists - creating mass civilian suffering does not help the SMO cause.
Children, amateurs and NATO think shock and awe is enough.
The Russian military believes in Clausewiczian destruction of opposing militaries and inculcating the firm belief that fighting Russia gets you killed to no real effect. Nobody remotely sane in Ukraine will believe that they “could have won” when this is all over.

Posted by: c1ue | Sep 19 2022 17:40 utc | 6

@V87 | Sep 19 2022 17:27 utc | 1

For sure, what you say make sense if they don't want hardware, weapons and manpower to come to the frontline.

But what if they DO WANT them to come (but not too fast) so that they can destroy them progressively ?

Posted by: UncleTom | Sep 19 2022 17:41 utc | 7

As Michael Hudson said a few times, the politicians are not serving their countries in Europe, they are serving the elite bankers and super rich families who are in a club of super-elites and are all invested in American energy companies, American tech companies, American green energy companies, and American investment companies like Blackrock, etc. This is about forcing them to buy more from America at higher prices. The industrialists in the EU are going along with it because they depend on the banking system which is controlled by the elites, still how long till they resort to using other means to put pressure on the politicians to change? Will they hire saboteurs to pressure the elites, or gangsters to threaten them? How long can this go on without them turning to violence? As we have seen, everything the elites do to control the world backfires spectacularly eventually.

Posted by: Kali El | Sep 19 2022 17:42 utc | 8

I know five people who are planning trips to Europe this winter. Two couples and a single. All of them have friends in Europe, Germany and Spain to be specific. What they believe and what they are told is absolutely nothing is happening. The status quo ante is immutable. And naturally Russia is losing the war, is at end of the road. All cite supporting Ukraine by supporting Europe via tourist spending.

When hitting them upside the head with a 2x4 makes no impression just be patient, reality will arrive with a 6x6 upside the head. Not sure if even that will ever remove them from slumber.

Posted by: oldhippie | Sep 19 2022 17:42 utc | 9

So everyone in Europe will end up paying more for their energy, thus giving countries like China and India a competitive advantage, as they buy cheaper Russian energy that Europe won't buy because the Americans have ordered them to commit economic suicide.
Institutionalised self-harm from European governments. It really is bizarre to watch it unfold.

Posted by: D J G | Sep 19 2022 17:43 utc | 10


That doesn't really sound reasonable. NATO simply has a much larger production capacity and deeper pockets to replace losses than Russia does. Even if Russia is good at destroying supplies, those missiles and planes still cost millions to fire and operate. There is no situation in which allowing a consistent influx of weaponry works in Russia's favor - it's not like Russia will wait Western Europe out and then just drive to Berlin once they're done with Ukraine and EU discovers that it ran out of bullets.

Posted by: V87 | Sep 19 2022 17:46 utc | 11

As Europe plunges into the winter season unprepared, will there also be a corresponding 'surge' in immigration (ie. caused by famines, etc.) from the Global South into the EU?

This could be cause for further tension and increased poverty.

Posted by: Mummer | Sep 19 2022 17:47 utc | 12

I have to disagree with B here:

"It is indeed a sign of cowardice that European politicians blame Russia for problems they themselves have caused. They try to hide it but the facts are all there to point that out. Should Europe really run into energy problems during the winter the political punishment they will receive will be remorseless."

I don't think that European politicians will receive any punishment whatsoever. They will be rewarded with company directorships, think tank posts, well-paid sincecures with the UN or the World Bank, etc. They fail remorselessly upwards. There is no penalty, no matter how utterly incompetent or corrupt they are. See Boris Johnson, Liz Truss, or any number of euroscoundrels.

Posted by: JulianJ | Sep 19 2022 17:51 utc | 13

@GMC #3
The price you pay is far below what market price is at the moment.
Even in the US: $8 per mcf (1000 cubic feet)(roughly market price today) equals $210 per mcm (1000 cubic meters).
In comparison: Gasprom was selling natural gas for $30-$50 per mcm prior to 2021.
However, the consumption number you post seem really high. 1st world natural gas consumption per capita is in the 1200 cubic meters per year. 200 cubic meters per month seems high.

Posted by: c1ue | Sep 19 2022 17:53 utc | 14

The US gas bubble has already burst.
Fracking is a temporary thing. It's like shaking a soda bottle and then opening it, there is a burst of gas and then only small bubbles.
It takes more fossil fuel energy to frack than you get in return, so fracking is more about the money speculation than actually producing gas (which is why you can see them flaring it off into the atmosphere so many times).

Posted by: wagelaborer | Sep 19 2022 17:56 utc | 15

@oldhippie9: Same here. My wife remains "blissfully" ignorant and objects when I attempt to illuminate. The underlying reason for USAns is actually really simple. We have lived in a post WW2 era with unprecedented prosperity for a great many people and a so called middle class which is withering as we type. Like the song by FZ and The Mothers: It Cant Happen Here. "Oh thats only happens in places like Argentina or Lebanon, surely there are beneficent overlords that would prevent that." Silly as it may sound that is the prevailing perspective. It does not matter that there is decent and compelling evidence that the ruling North Americans get the 2X4 upside the head, they will not fuggin listen because it is painfully inconvenient. "Oh well I may just nip off to Italy in a few months". Really and do what? Document the rallies that may very well degenerate into riots complete with burning and looting? Pay 5 times the price? Get locked down when SPARS 2025-2028 gets triggered early? Much in the way they glaze over and get a 100yrd stare at the mere mention of 'Suddenly & Unexpectedly from Unknown Causes', so to do my fellow citizens respond to what appears to be a tsunami on the horizon.

Posted by: Chevrus | Sep 19 2022 18:04 utc | 16

Putin: "let none of them blame us for their own mistakes."

As that great American philosopher Forrest Gump said: "Stupid is as stupid does."

Posted by: Gt Stroller | Sep 19 2022 18:07 utc | 17

Posted by: c1ue | Sep 19 2022 17:33 utc | 2


Posted by: v | Sep 19 2022 18:23 utc | 18

@ oldhippie | Sep 19 2022 17:42 utc | 9
@ Chevrus | Sep 19 2022 18:04 utc | 16

Reality will fall somewhere between the Pollyannas and the Doomsdayers for most of us, as it usually does. I would not fault these people for going to Europe, there will be fewer lineups and more deals to be found in hotels etc.

We postponed our planned trip to Russia this year, and still plan to go next year. Friends who just returned from visiting family in Rostov and Crimea said everything appears normal except for more military flights overhead.

Posted by: Opport Knocks | Sep 19 2022 18:32 utc | 19

It is interesting that Russia has not run "Arc Light" type grid-erasing bombing runs, which they have demonstrated in Syria, especially when the Ukraine Army was out in the open. Could be that Ukraine has received and deployed NASAMS, which are effective against strategic bombers.

There's the question of NATO sheep dipped soldiers operating for PMCs. What is their number? 10,000? 50,000?

The Ukraine tactic is American Blitzkrieg/human shield. Race from one concentration of human shields to the next. Hitting fuel seems like an option. All diesel comes by train from Poland. Hitting slow moving tanker trains is easy. Of course that also gets rid of diesel for civilian deliveries. However diesel also has to be stored. And those stores can be hit.

Another thing is that using strike drones, like the ones from Iran, are a good tactic for this type of human shield warfare.

Posted by: JackG | Sep 19 2022 18:33 utc | 20

I know five people who are planning trips to Europe this winter. - Posted by: oldhippie | Sep 19 2022 17:42 utc | 9
My wife and I are planning on visiting Davos for the first time and returning to St. Anton this winter, but I’m closely watching the developing energy crisis and the general civic environments in Switzerland & Austria.

Posted by: DocHollywood | Sep 19 2022 18:34 utc | 21

@JackG | Sep 19 2022 18:33 utc | 20

Could be that Ukraine has received and deployed NASAMS, which are effective against strategic bombers.
I think they have.

Posted by: Norwegian | Sep 19 2022 18:36 utc | 22

When one compares the rhetoric of Putin to that of all American Politicians it's remarkable how dumbed-down 'Americans' have become. I don't want to use Biden as a comparison because that is just sad. Imagine Putin and US VP Harris. It's laughable.

This is why the current situation is so dangerous. American Elites are just plain stupid.

Posted by: gottlieb | Sep 19 2022 18:44 utc | 23

The 3rd army is near the frontline now - it will be the final blow

Posted by: Snowflake | Sep 19 2022 18:44 utc | 24

The presser had many important components, many of which b has overlooked, which is why it's important to read the entire transcript. Many will have noted I refrained from providing a link and commentary as I do usually. I chose this particular Q&A for numerous reasons and share President Putin's outrage:

Vladimir Sanfirov: Vesti FM radio station, Valery Sanfirov.

On the eve of the US Treasury increased not only the number of people who fall under sanctions, but also the nature of the work, and the age limits.

Vladimir Putin: What is the framework? What's there?

Vyacheslav Sanfirov: Age limits. I'll explain. In addition to the fact that your assistant Maxim Oreshkin, the general director of the Mir payment system, is there, but also Maria Lvova-Belova...

Vladimir Putin: I don't understand that Maxim Oreshkin?

Vyacheslav Sanfirov: We have been sanctioned by the US Treasury.

Vladimir Putin: Maxim Oreshkin? Under sanctions?

Vladimir Sanfirov: Yes.

Vladimir Putin: Apparently, for the meeting with Erdogan, he went to Turkey, met with Erdogan, and he was immediately sanctioned.

Vyacheslav Sanfirov: As for age, there is also a children's ombudsman, Maria Lvova-Belova, for the fact that, according to the American wording, she "stole children from Ukraine", which is why she was sanctioned. As well as Ramzan Kadyrov and his minor children – there are three of them, three of them. And in total, as you know, he has 14.

Vladimir Putin: Minors, right? This is the first time I've just heard about it.

Vyacheslav Sanfirov: But it just happened.

Vladimir Putin: I was busy with other issues, I don't know about it.

Vyacheslav Sanfirov: What do you think about these sanctions?

Vladimir Putin: I think this is schizophrenia, because putting underage children under sanctions is beyond the pale. It seems to me that they have simply ceased to understand what they are doing.

As for our ombudsman for the protection of children's rights, as we know, she has been engaged – and is still engaged, and God bless her, I hope that she will continue to do so – in the removal of our children from the war zones: from Syria, from Iraq – children who remained there due to various circumstances, not of their own free will, of course.

This is a noble mission, she risks her life and health. Naturally, it is normal for her to take children out of the combat zone or from dangerous zones in the Donbas. What's wrong with that? Thank you for that and bow low to her. To put her under sanctions for this? This is the first time I've heard of this. It's outrageous. [My Emphasis]

Yes, those in DC have again confirmed what the DC stands for--Depravity Central.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 19 2022 18:52 utc | 25

"Should Europe really run into energy problems during the winter the political punishment they will receive will be remorseless."

My guess is different. If Europe really runs into serious energy problems, nobody gets punished.
Governments may change, and new parties/leaders may be elected into power, if there are elections scheduled.

However, they will just be more militant towards Russia, giving more lethal help to Ukraine, demanding more stringent actions against Russia.

Just a guess, of course. Looking forward to april to see if either of us is right.

Posted by: Membrum Virile | Sep 19 2022 18:52 utc | 26

GMC | Sep 19 2022 17:35 utc | 3
You probably paid 80€ for 1000 Kwh (€8ct/Kwh).
One cubic meter is 11Kwh.

Posted by: La Bastille | Sep 19 2022 18:53 utc | 27

Per Putins SCO news conference. Possibility of reclassifying the SMO to a Counter Terrorist operation. Not sure what practical impact that has. Putin seems pretty committed to the status quo. No sign on the battlefield that Russia is becoming more aggressive. In fact they appear to becoming less agressive.

Ukraine make incremental progress against the Oskol river line. They make incremental progress against Belegorka. In Kherson, the Russians allow them to remain on the Russian side of the Ingulets river. Everywhere Russia is suppine. Some will cite slow grinding progress around Bhakmut.

Many will argue that this is a clever Russian tactic to allow Ukraine to bring troops to places where they can be attacked. But wars of attrition impose a cost on both sides.

When do we wonder if clever Russian tactics are really just cover for the inability of the Russian army to attack with enough force and momentum to actually change the shape of the battlefield.

Russian tactics suggest the Russians believe that time is on their side. At perhaps it is. But war always gives the enemy a vote. So granting the enemy time also means you are granting them the opportunity to continue voting. There is a risk as long as the body is animated.

It may indeed be that the Russians are content to wait for winter when they may be able to operate while the AFU may not. But we must also be prepared to consider that the Russian Army has it's own problems and the ability to attack when required may be one of them.

In the end we are all just spectators.

Posted by: Dan Farrand | Sep 19 2022 18:53 utc | 28

@v87 think you have it backwards

Posted by: Macu | Sep 19 2022 18:54 utc | 29

The oligarchs who largely run the (Western) Empire are perfectly aware that Ukraine cannot win the war with Russia. They also believe that energy will be a problem for the people of Europe and this is perfectly desirable. Why? Because the peoples of the Empire lack a sense of cohesion and a solid basis for meaning and, should major difficulties arise in their standards of living, they will respond not by blaming their politicians but by blaming the Evil Russians and their bloodthirsty dictator. This is obviously a false picture but due to the inevitability of a form of totalitarianism currently spreading in the West (mass formation hypnosis) it will seem to be true and "the people" will find that the world and its confusions will become create a new set of clear rules will be established based on fighting evil, solidarity will emerge out of crisis, pain and difficulties will be seen as bracing events, and meaning will suddenly quicken the step and a new confidence will emerge. The end result will be a move towards an emergence of genuine militarism in Europe. Human beings always thrive from a sense of meaning and much more than the currently "soft" movement towards endless entertainment and hedonism which is unsustainable anyway. This was noted the PNAC document in the late nineties that stated that the USA would benefit from a New Pearl Harbor (thus the events of 911) moving USA-ans away from hedonism and internal squabbles towards unity through a new military-focused culture. This partially worked by solidifying the control of the mainstream media by the CIA, the revival of mass-conformity due to cultural forces, the gradual destruction of the legal system, and an unprecedented outbreak of systemic corruption (fueled by the meme of "no good deed goes unpunished" as those of us who have worked in Washington chanted ritually every day).

There has been not a peep of protest at pouring money into Ukraine or the systemically corrupt Pentagon. Both political parties and all major publications and TV outlets and most video bloggers all support (any) war because war is seen as a struggle between the almost ridiculously inarticulate Western "leaders" seen as "good" and the most intelligent and dynamic world leader who is as articulate as the the Western elites are not who is seen as "evil." Even critics and dissenters who oppose the "woke" normals all agree on how bad Putin is even as Putin supports their very critiques of woke culture. I would guess that they would never read of view anything Putin has ever said.

The goal of the oligarchy is to create a new Orwellian society and essential to that is to lower the standard of living in the West to wean people from hedonism, particularly in Western Europe where religion is weakest and provide the people in exchange a new reason for life itself. That's the plan at least and, in my view, is quite reasonable and shows signs of succeeding. Many who post here believe elections and mass protests will do something--as someone living the the most "advanced" "democratic" society (the USA) I can assure you that even if the masses opposed the current structure election and/or protests would change very little. The oligarchs own the political structures including elections--from my own research (going back to the 90s) I know my vote may or may not count because results can easily be changed anytime by whoever has the power.

Our future in the West is police states everywhere. In the USA, because of our more anarchic sensibility and the spread of weapons everywhere, the totalitarianism that places like Germany seem take to as a duck takes to water ill not be easily imposed among the "deplorables" particularly in the South where I live.

Posted by: Chris Cosmos | Sep 19 2022 18:56 utc | 30

Posted by: c1ue | Sep 19 2022 17:53 utc | 14

The reason Serbia is getting below-market-priced natural gas is they signed a long term supply agreement with their Russian suppliers. Gaszprom is still offering NG at 1/20th Spot under Long term contracts.

The companies charging the outrageous prices aren’t Russian, they are English, Norwegian, and North American

BTW - at the same time NS2 was built, finished, and now left unused; there was another pipeline built which now supplies Serbia and South Eastern Europe with beaucoup cheap NG.

Posted by: Exile | Sep 19 2022 18:57 utc | 31

I know five people who are planning trips to Europe this winter.
oldhippie | Sep 19 2022 17:42 utc | 9

I had 2 groups: one of 4 and one of 6, that went to the former Yugoslavia for e-bike tours. They needed their bikes checked over etc. I asked, "when did they make their plans"? March both replied.

I asked, "Have you checked closely what is going on over there at the moment"?

"We're not going into Kosovo!"

My reply, "So, do you think tourism is the most important thing on their minds? What do you think is?"

"Damn it! We planned this trip a year in advance! It's costing us about $5000can! I'm sure they will be happy to to provide!"

Me further, "Okay. Only your needs matter."


Me, again, "That makes it simple. I will not service any of these bikes. Period. I am not a prostitute for business. I definately do not need yours."

(conversation somewhat paraphrased)

The word got out! I had people come to the shop that heard through the town grapevine what had transpired, and I got mostly received unwavering support. Those that didn't support came to me to tell me they will never bring their bikes to my shop again!

My reply, "And don't bring yourself, either!"

One fellow over at Off-Guardian commented that the Normies need to be told to f**k off at every opportunity when disparagement and ad hominems come his way.

I agree, but I will not F-bomb. I think my approach gets better results.

Posted by: Mann Friedmann | Sep 19 2022 18:57 utc | 32

thanks b... excellent information for anyone who wants to stay informed.... thanks to the many fine posters here at moa as well for the updates..

Posted by: james | Sep 19 2022 18:59 utc | 33

Quick question for anyone who is smarter than I am . Why would the US -who is the real power- have Bojo be the one to tell Zelensky to stop surrendering with the Russians? Why didn’t the US just do it? Is the US trying to look squeeky clean and lets the world think that Perfidious Albion is the bad guy?

Also, what is going on with that turbine that came back from Canada -after that ridiculous odyssey ? What is the real holdup? What is Germany saying about it?

Posted by: Brother Ma | Sep 19 2022 19:09 utc | 34

Tom Luongo has a different idea; He seems to agree (?) with the point above that the EU government is owned by the rich and does only their bidding. That the US is crushing the EU to cause Germany as much problems as possible.
here is the link to an interview this am. Part 1. Part 2 is forthcoming;

Posted by: Tard | Sep 19 2022 19:17 utc | 35

Posted by: Dan Farrand | Sep 19 2022 18:53 utc | 28

Good post. I could understand the RF posture if they had Odessa and well established defense lines. But as you say we don’t know.

Posted by: RB | Sep 19 2022 19:17 utc | 36

@ Mann Friedmann | Sep 19 2022 18:57 utc | 32

Well done! That was a pointless confrontation. The more important question is, "How do you know what is really going on over there at the moment"? Relative to their travel itinerary of course, former Yugoslavia is a big place.

If everyone cancelled travel every time a US embassy stirred the pot in a foreign country the whole industry would die.

Fried Man indeed.

Posted by: Opport Knocks | Sep 19 2022 19:19 utc | 37

SCO in Samarkand was business as usual? This is very superficial. It was amazing, a big step to a new world order. Now SCO consists of 26 members, observer, dialog partner, candidates. Extremely remarkable what Putin and Xi expressed.

Posted by: maurizio | Sep 19 2022 19:23 utc | 38

Posted by: Mann Friedmann | Sep 19 2022 18:57 utc | 32

No fracking idea what you are about!

Posted by: RB | Sep 19 2022 19:25 utc | 39

Dima from Military Summary Channel says that teh situation for Russians is very critical on the north. The people in Lugansk are afraid of Ukrainian revenge.

Posted by: Rex | Sep 19 2022 19:29 utc | 40

Could be that Ukraine has received and deployed NASAMS, which are effective against strategic bombers.
Posted by: JackG | Sep 19 2022 18:33 utc | 20

On September 16, 2022, the U.S. Department of Defense announced the delivery of two NASAMS to Ukraine.

Those missiles are $1.3 million per shot. You're paying?

Posted by: Passerby | Sep 19 2022 19:32 utc | 41

"Mutual obligations are incurred by the sellers and the buyers. They said, “No, let the market regulate itself.“ We kept telling them, “Don't do it or it will lead to drastic consequences.”

Russia continues to reap benefits from the Cold War activities of Soviet Agent Alicia Rosenbaum (aka Ayn Rand).

Posted by: James J. O'Meara | Sep 19 2022 19:42 utc | 42

Posted by: Passerby | Sep 19 2022 19:32 utc | 41

FYI, the article you linked is not found. I tried massaging the URL a little to no avail.

I was able to use the site's search feature and that did return several relevant results, here:

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Sep 19 2022 19:42 utc | 43

The US will pay for the NASAMs through printed money and higher inflation.

If Ukraine breaks through at Limon and captures the road to Siversk, the situation becomes critical because resupply at the Luhansk front becomes a lot more simple. I think Russia will be taking down the Ukraine infrastructure if that were to occur.

This is how I know the Izium war crimes story is totally bogus (besides the Russians using cross grave markers) in that Russia is going to the extremes to protect civilians. How hard is it to take down diesel storage tanks? But they haven't. I think that is about to change.

Posted by: JackG | Sep 19 2022 19:58 utc | 44

Until some six years ago. the newpapers and TV/Radio outlets here in Scaninavia acrually used to give recounts of what Putin ans Shoygu or spokeswoman Zolichnaya (real Jewish name:Zakharowa,) (like the dissident atomoc physisist Sakarow tto the hilt ) actually said and pronounced. After 2020: Never more dare scandinavian Media repor what thay actually said.
The USSR wa a multy-ethnic state, and even now with a 18‰ muslis and up to a 5% buddhist or related animistamong its population,. Those folks are it seems to me beholden to the Russians Policy. Is not this a winning propsision in countering the "Gott-mit-uns" self image that strutts ouy fram northern Amerka?

Posted by: Tollef Ås/秋涛乐/טלפ וש | Sep 19 2022 20:02 utc | 45

Compare and contrast Putin's speech with the State of the Union Address a few days earlier by Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission.

The Russian military is taking chips from dishwashers and refrigerators to fix their military hardware, because there are no semiconductors anymore. Russia’s industry is in tatters.

and that it's Russia (and not western anti-Russian sanctions) that's responsible for rising electricity bills in Europe.
Send those bills to Moscow. That’s where they belong to, that’s where the source is.

She offers this explanation for how that is so:
Russia keeps actively manipulating our energy market. I mean they prefer to flare the gas instead of sending it to Europe according to the contracts that are existing.

Posted by: Brendan | Sep 19 2022 20:02 utc | 46

maurizio @38--

Interpretations differ. Consider this exchange at the presser:

Pavel Zarubin: Your most important bilateral meeting with the head of China. Still, a very important meeting, given the red-hot atmosphere, the whole world was watching it – the red-hot atmosphere on the planet, I mean. What is the most important thing in the outcome of this meeting?

Vladimir Putin: You know, there was nothing of the most important thing, no matter how strange it may seem, there was nothing of the most important thing. It was, in fact, an ordinary, ordinary meeting of ours. There have been no personal meetings for a long time after my trip to Beijing for the opening of the Olympics, but we simply noted a significant increase in trade.

Last year – as I have already said – we had 140 billion, we set the task of getting to $200 billion in trade turnover, but we thought that this was some distant goal beyond the horizon. This year, trade will reach about $180 billion, maybe $190 billion. In other words, this goal – 200 billion – is about to be achieved. And, in my opinion, this is the most important thing.

We talked about what else needs to be done to expand this trade turnover. We talked about what needs to be done in modern conditions to effectively counter illegal restrictions and all sorts of trade wars that our so-called partners are deploying here and there, if I may say so, apply various illegitimate restrictions. But we still have to react to this in some way, we understand what is happening.

We talked about the need to expand trade and settlements in national currencies, and this is growing gradually. Not as fast as we would all like, but nevertheless all this is progressing. We talked about major projects that we are implementing, about infrastructure projects that would allow us to unblock the growing flows of goods. They mostly talked about it.

But, of course, there were also issues related to the crises – these issues were also discussed in a benevolent but principled manner.

The reporter saw the Putin/Xi meeting as most important, but Putin said it was an ordinary discussion that mostly focused on trade. What I read into that exchange is all between the lines, which Putin says relative to dedollarization is not going as quickly as many would like, although the trade goal will soon be met. I see satisfactory progress of an extremely complex operation to establish a new economic order that renders dollar hegemony to the annals of history that's learned from the mistakes made during the previous attempt to form the NIEO in the 1970s--almost 50 years ago. I highly suggest taking the time to read Dr. Hudson's updated Introduction to his Global Fracture, which detailed those initial efforts, the new Introduction brings us up-to-date while also illustrating the mistakes made then. (You can freely access the book at the link.) The most significant difference between then and now is the establishment of commercial and financial relations within the Multipolar World prior to attempting anything major Geopolitically. Strength and resilience are thus built first to provide a stable foundation for the ensuing Geopolitical struggle. Imagine the situation today if Russia and China hadn't established their strategic relations and related infrastructure. Russia's Geoeconomic position vis-a-vis the EU would be much different as Russia wouldn't be able to become independent of EU energy markets to support its development. Likewise, China would lack the energy it needed to continue its rapid development pace. In the mid-1970s, there were no comparable economic powerhouses to back the Global South's vision which created a lack of solidarity, and the Washinton Consensus methodically went about destabilizing most of the NAM's members.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 19 2022 20:03 utc | 47

karlof1 | Sep 19 2022 18:52 utc | 25
like the funeral thing, both the (not my) queen and the Izyum forest funerals, it's too depressing to think about. sanctioned for the work of rescuing Russian (I presume) kids from war zones?

it was too depressing to read thru the comments because of the headlines of a cemetery with crosses associated with words like "war crimes, torture," etc, headlines and photos all over the US media. I've felt ill. there it is, the symbol of their religion all over that newly dug cemetery. "war crime."

the West doesn't even honor its own dead at all. So of course Russians (or RAF) giving Christian burial to the enemy is a war crime.

this is a very degraded country. it's inner life is as sick as the garbage and madness everywhere in its streets. as evidenced by its speech. they open their mouths and a pile of rotting corpses is vomited up.

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Sep 19 2022 20:05 utc | 48

@ James J. O'Meara | Sep 19 2022 19:42 utc | 42

The more I think about Germany and other EU countries not renewing long term gas contracts, the more I think this was pre-planned at a supra-national level.

The engineering of inflation following the creation of too much debt to avoid what would be a demographic driven deflationary spiral cannot be considered an accident. It is a bad policy decision on top of many previous bad policy decisions.

After enough pain is inflicted, most people will accept whatever terms are imposed in their Great Reset.

Posted by: Opport Knocks | Sep 19 2022 20:07 utc | 49

Scholz is really that dumb?

Yes. Because either he knows Poland is the one blocking it and he's acting dumb calling Putin about it, thinking the latter doesn't know, or just being irritating. Either way is dumb. Or he doesn't know it, and then he definitely is stupid.

Posted by: Raskolnikov | Sep 19 2022 20:07 utc | 50

Dan Farrand | Sep 19 2022 18:53 utc | 28 "But we must also be prepared to consider that the Russian Army has it's own problems and the ability to attack when required may be one of them."

Russia has approx 850,000 combat troops not counting conscripts. Of them about 200,000 are contract troops. At the moment Russia is only using the contract troops and to allow for rotations only half or less are on the field at any one time. Pentagon says Russia allocated 140 BTG's for the SMO which is probably just over 100,000 men depending on BTG size.

For whatever reason, Russia want and have planned a long war. Russia's larger goal in this hybrid war with the US and UK is to create the multi-polar world and I believe destroy nato. There is now anti nato/anti sanction protests starting up in parts of Europe. As the energy problems their elite inflicted on them get worse, those protests will grow and spread.

The linked article below is worth a read as to the state of the Russian military.

The theme of the bumbling Russians was clearly preconceived and coordinated, and commenced in earnest within the first 24 hours of hostilities. CIA/MI6 fronts like Oryx, Bellingcat, and the war-mongering Kagan family propaganda mill The Institute for the Study of War have pumped out this narrative so relentlessly that it has now been almost universally enshrined as “received wisdom” in the western state-controlled corporate media and among large numbers of clueless, arms industry-compromised former generals – even to the point of entering into the body of assumptions embraced by many “experts” who I expected to be more discerning.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Sep 19 2022 20:10 utc | 51

I.o.w. Scholz is just taking and executing orders. He is not even capable of passing off what he is doing with an air of plausible deniability. He's really just dumb.

Posted by: Raskolnikov | Sep 19 2022 20:12 utc | 52

India dedollarizing.
New Delhi, Sept 19 (Reuters) - Top lender State Bank of India (SBI.NS) has asked exporters to avoid settling deals with Bangladesh in the dollar and other major currencies as it looks to curb exposure to Dhaka's falling reserves, according to an internal document and a source.
NEW DELHI - India and Saudi Arabia have discussed the possibility of starting a rupee-riyal trade as part of efforts to boost economic ties between the nations, the Indian government said in a statement on Monday.

India, Asia's third-largest economy, has put in place a mechanism to settle international trade transactions in Indian rupees (INR) with the emphasis on exports to boost global trade and respond to growing interest in the use of the rupee for trading purposes.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Sep 19 2022 20:24 utc | 53

The theme of the bumbling Russians was clearly preconceived and coordinated, and commenced in earnest within the first 24 hours of hostilities. CIA/MI6 fronts like Oryx, Bellingcat, and the war-mongering Kagan family propaganda mill The Institute for the Study of War have pumped out this narrative so relentlessly that it has now been almost universally enshrined as “received wisdom” in the western state-controlled corporate media and among large numbers of clueless, arms industry-compromised former generals – even to the point of entering into the body of assumptions embraced by many “experts” who I expected to be more discerning.

The theme of "bumbling" Russian was idiotic. The theme of arrogant Russians pussyfooting around, as exemplified by Martynov, is real. Zerohedge has just published a list of NATO arms delivered to Ukraine. Marry that with NATO PMCs and you have a real war.

NASAMs are a real threat that are based on the highly capable AIM-120 missile, which is capable of datalink. Which means in Kherson you fly an AWACS in international waters which guides the missile within a few miles of the target. The missile then lights up its onboard radar and the target only has a few seconds to respond. High kill percentage. Even in Kharkov where you don't have AWACs, they are still potent.

As for the military satellites, how many are in a moving orbit, and how many stationary? The US tracks those satellites, so you only move your supplies when there's no satellite overhead. Then you throw up the netting and wait for the next window. Drop the arrogance and give NATO credit for a logistic miracle.

The big vulnerability for Ukraine is diesel. However hitting that will cause major problems for civilians. I think we'll see that. Strategically the EU energy crisis means Russia wins. And I think logistics is still a major problem for Ukraine, meaning they are going to have problems sustaining an offensive. But it's not a cake walk.

Posted by: JackG | Sep 19 2022 20:26 utc | 54

If it was an unscripted presser it’s as impressive as any I have read or seen by Putin.

What does changing from SMO to a Anti-Terrorist Operation mean?

I suppose something like what Obama did by unleashing Killer Drones across the lands where high value terrorists gather - without taking out as many civilian wedding attendants?

That with hypersonic glider tech means ANYWHERE. Being caring soldiers I expect it will be about minimising any danger to civilians were the scum western elites tend to hide behind.

The absurd spiral into inconsequence of the Collective Waste’s elites is going to be a wonder to behold. As they realise not only their own ‘careers’ but their childrens and dynasties are mere castles of sand.

Us plebs are being kept behind walls so that we believe what is projected on them as being the Other. Well most of us anyway. These not bothering to search out ways of seeing beyond the walls into the real world. Someone said to me earlier that the BBC is claiming 5 billion people were watching the dead Empires, dead Queen’s funeral today! For the record I haven’t seen one photo of her in ANY of the houses or streets near me. We don’t care but we are told we do by the tv and news - so it must be true!

Posted by: DunGroanin | Sep 19 2022 20:27 utc | 55

could it be that the hate on germany is just like, that they dont want to send their mercs against russchia? as some say

Posted by: Macpott | Sep 19 2022 20:33 utc | 56

Dear b,

By way of appreciation I offer two corrections. I understand English is not your first language and am very grateful for what you publish.

Text: The SCO markets are were global economic growth is happening.

Better: The SCO markets are where global economic growth is happening.

Text: Siemens has the maintenance contract for the turbine pressure pumps but sanctions are prevent it from fulfilling it.

Better: Siemens has the maintenance contract for the turbine pressure pumps but sanctions are preventing it from fulfilling it.

Thanks again.

Posted by: YesXorNo | Sep 19 2022 20:34 utc | 57

Like some of you today I also take issue with two of b's points: that Samarkand was business as usual and that it is a sign of "cowardice" of European politicians to blame Russia for problems they themselves have caused.
Samarkand was a bit more than business as usual in particular because of (the scope of) SCO's expansion, in particular Iran's membership.

Politicians in the West are not cowards and they are not stupid. Some of them are, true, and some are incompetent.
The problem with these politicians is that they are not representatives of the people but of financial and business interests (think big Pharma etc). Along with the military, media, intelligence and science complex they literally live in a different world than everyone else, a world they created carrying out THEIR various plans and schemes, and projected in their media. Their frame of reference is absolutely different than the "people's". For as long as they can remember, they know only wealth, privilege, public attention assuring them of their relevance, control. They DO NOT KNOW accountability for any of their mistakes, crimes, lies and utter disregard for human beings, their lives, their true needs. Not interested, not part of their frame of reference. They have been acting with impunity for so long that they have no reason to fear any kind of repercussion for their deeds, now openly evil. These people are very dangerous because they are delusional; their actions have ceased to be rational in any way.

They are acting intentionally, in a planned and coordinated fashion. For example, the Dutch government is hell bent on destroying the farmers in a country that is the second biggest food exporter in the world. Unbelievable, but true. Rational?
Capitalism has degenerated to such a degree that it has turned on itself and the vampires are its leaders, the worst of the worst - from Johnson to the ignorant blond, Trump, then Biden and some say Tump again, Sholtz, Macron, all these characters in Italy, the nordic states, the Baltic states and so on and so on. Its a horror show. Each next "leader" will be worse.

Putin and Xi Jiping are different because they act like human beings and speak like them, too. They speak about relevant matters with knowledge and understanding. And they don't lie! Some of the South American and African leaders are also human figures speaking honestly and constructively. It's like a summer breeze listening to them. People in the West have interiorised this notion of politics as a field of lying where politicians inherently are liars. They, therefore, are literally unable to comprehend that a politician tells the truth. Let alone a Putin or a Xi Jiping If you don't believe me, ask around. (What you will get is - all politicians lie).
Putin holds a yearly press conference for the entire press corps. He answers all questions so the conference sometimes lasts for hours (four hours, for example). I listen to these pressers. Putin is always well prepared and very well informed. He comes across as honest, competent, committed and highly responsible. It is hard not to trust him. You might say - remarkable. I say - not at all. Because every public servant, and that is what he is, should be honest, competent and responsible. But because the western world is so upside down, something that should be common seems remarkable.

Posted by: JB | Sep 19 2022 20:35 utc | 58

@ Brother Ma | Sep 19 2022 19:09 utc | 34

its a good question... why would boris johnson be the one to convince zelensky to turn down the peace agreement between ukraine -russia, as opposed to biden? this goes into the whole issue of war=money.... the city of london has a rep in boris johnson...the war is about money more then anything else.. this war is coming on the back of the money spent by western gov'ts on covid... war is always about finance.. so think of it that boris was a spokeperson for the financial interests, as opposed to the well being of the planet or ukrainians in particular...

Posted by: james | Sep 19 2022 20:49 utc | 59

If I read what Von der Leyen and Scholz say, I am beginning to think they are high on drugs. They have lost all reason and seem to be in some sort of stupor. People go on about the coalition, but the FDP has simply disappeared. The Greens have decided to convert Germany into Fred Flintstone's Bedrock and are quite happy about it. But the people will take all of it and see Germany's economy collapse not because of the Russians but the Americans. In the end, the Americans wanted to destroy Europe'sindependence aand they got it. All Scholz and Von der Leyen have done is destroy the EU. Period.

Posted by: Stierlitz | Sep 19 2022 20:53 utc | 60

The right wing dogma of hard work is fully embraced by the political parties of the Left. We earned our way to success and we are better than those who have not succeeded. Socialism is for the lazy and the weak.

The reason for European tunnel vision is that the left and right consider themselves superior to those who need help from the state. They welcome the opportunity to financially survive the upcoming financial earthquakes, because it will prove their superiority over the lazy and the weak.

As a Convert to Islam , I recognise two bank accounts, one for this world and another for the next. Those who fill their worldly bank accounts might like foolish virgins end up regretting their decision to only look after themselves. Because looking aftervothers was the means of building credit in the next life bank.

Posted by: Giyane | Sep 19 2022 20:54 utc | 61

Dan Farrand @ 28

When do we wonder if clever Russian tactics are really just cover for the inability of the Russian army to attack with enough force and momentum to actually change the shape of the battlefield.

I'm starting to think this too, sustainers see mystifying tactics and pray it's brilliant maneuvering, three chess moves ahead, but it might just be exactly what it seems, the RF military having a really hard time of it, struggling to keep up, caught btwn the hammer and the anvil and doing their best to survive between one blow and the next.

Saw today on Telegram that LPR and the DPR have asked for the leadership there to determine and vote among themselves on joining the RF, in other words an ad hoc limited referendum done while still under fire without having all the Donbas captured and stabilized. Why? Because the leadership of the Donbas, the insiders, the ones on the ground who see the reality are seriously worried they could be abandoned like Izium and want to force on the RF an iron clad guarantee of being made right now, pretty much by decree, a part of the Russia. It was supposed to be an organized popular vote like Crimea in a liberated Donbas this November. More desperation and not a good sign.

Posted by: LightYearsFromHome | Sep 19 2022 20:55 utc | 62

@34 "Why would the US -who is the real power- have Bojo be the one to tell Zelensky to stop surrendering with the Russians?"

Bojo probably volunteered for the job and Joe doesn't have the energy (or the passion?)

Posted by: dh | Sep 19 2022 20:56 utc | 63

Chris Cosmos no. 30

An interesting and succint opinion.

Posted by: ThusspakeZarathustra | Sep 19 2022 21:01 utc | 64

"The more I think about Germany and other EU countries not renewing long term gas contracts, the more I think this was pre-planned at a supra-national level..." Opport Knocks@49
You could be right but when I first learned of the policy, a year or so ago I think it was, it struck me as a marvellous example of ideological blindness: they insisted on 'market mechanisms', as in spot prices, because the EU is guided by fanatical neo-liberals.
Personally I find that a lot more disturbing than the scenario that you advance and the implications of secret cabals making plans that obedient governments implement.
We already had a "great re-set." That is what neo-liberalism has been and it gathered strength, just when it was about to collapse, from the coincidence of the USSR's demise.

Posted by: bevin | Sep 19 2022 21:07 utc | 65

I guess the 3rd corps

a triangle keeping a core inside

everyone got as std eq a grenade launcher, did us troops have that in afg?

Posted by: Macpott | Sep 19 2022 21:08 utc | 66

and the other way -- Idont know who thought about that idea

Bahamut is the dragon of fate -- a pure metal dragon

it will behave as its master says :)

Posted by: Macpott | Sep 19 2022 21:12 utc | 67

Posted by: Rex | Sep 19 2022 19:29 utc | 40

Dima from Military Summary Channel says that the situation for Russians is very critical on the north.

Dima is an absurd charlatan and his opinions are not worth the powder it would take to blow them to hell.

Posted by: Intelligent Dasein | Sep 19 2022 21:25 utc | 68

@JB | Sep 19 2022 20:35 utc | 57

They are acting intentionally, in a planned and coordinated fashion. For example, the Dutch government is hell bent on destroying the farmers in a country that is the second biggest food exporter in the world.

It is intentional. As the Russians revealed, most of the Ukrainian grain ships went to the EU. Farmers from EU countries are protesting that the Ukrainian grain is cheaper than EU grain so flooding the market with this grain is going to put pressure on EU grain farmers. Two targets hit with the one shot? The poor African countries don't get the grain and the EU farmers go out of business. As the Dutch farmers say No farmers, no food. Add in the fact that Russian fertiliser is sitting in ships in EU harbours.

The only reason for messing up food production is population reduction.

Posted by: cirsium | Sep 19 2022 21:26 utc | 69


Depravity Central combines quite smoothly with Di$trict of Corruption. Reason why this particular American, actually a citizen of the State of Minnesota, not of the Federal regime; uses a dollar sign to replace the "S" in many words pertaining to that puppet regime, is that indeed that "government" is not independent, but received it's orders from those who constitute highest finance Capital.

There is an old Russian proverb which reminds, most particularly Americans, that the fish rots from the head down. Geoffrey Chaucer, clear back in the 14th Century or thereabouts, in his Canterbury Tales, pointed out that "if the gold is tarnished, what will the iron be"?

For sheer depravity, consider the powerful pro$titicians who cavorted with Jeffrey Epstein on his Lolita Express to that private hideaway island in the...American Virgin Islands. Then there's the case of the Franklin scandal, in which boys and youths from the Father Flanagan Boy's Town, were flown into the Di$trict and driven to the White House when Daddy WarBu$h, the former head of CIA, was running affairs for the shotcallers. Some sources maintain that some of those youngsters were never heard from again.

Posted by: aristodemos | Sep 19 2022 21:31 utc | 70

If Putin is correct - and his accusations could easily be refuted but probably will be just censored by Western propaganda/media - then the EU is deliberately collapsing its economy.

This aligns with conspiracy theories that West is bankrupt and headed for financial collapse and needs the excuse of Ukraine war & as usual blame Russia.

But extent of self sabotage suggests deeper conspiracy - along with the net detrimental to public health lockdowns and vaccination passports agenda - it’s about ushering in technocratic totalitarianism and social credit score system on an impoverished and less autonomous plebeian population by the WEF/Davos elites.

Klaus Schwab’s “Great Reset”.

Always wondered what if be like living in a real life dystopian movie.

Posted by: PJB | Sep 19 2022 21:33 utc | 71

meh I guess klaus is done for,

as the other puppts

what can we expect from now on?

Posted by: Macpott | Sep 19 2022 21:42 utc | 72

@ c1ue | Sep 19 2022 17:33 utc | 2 wrote

It is not a question of if there will be energy problems in Europe this winter. It is a question of how bad the problems are. Will it just be the de-industrialization of Germany via mass bankruptcy of the Mittelstadt and large companies in Germany? The small ones are already dying. Plus a few hundred poor pensioners? Or will it be thousands of Germans dying?

The German Minister for Economic Affiars, Robert Habeck, has said words to the effect that there is no reason for small businesses to become insolvent, they can simply stop producing.

This is a quantum leap beyond the immortal words of Marie Antoinette: Germans won’t even have cake to eat.

We don’t know how many Germans will starve or freeze to death this winter, but we might be curious how the survivors will deal with their leadership. The leaders are putting military on the streets starting 1 October, so they seem to not be totally oblivious to what they might be facing.

Posted by: Cato the Uncensored | Sep 19 2022 21:42 utc | 73

Chris Cosmos @30

Your South is hardly unique. There is one single quality found broadly distributed throughout rural America and that is plain old common sense. You will find very few "Wokies" in "flyover country". However the proportion of awakeners keeps expanding, not only among rural folk, but also among those Americans who are not only working class, but work at physically engaging labor.

Abstractions do not prevail in rural America and as a consequence there are few obstructions to being able to wake up and smell the coffee...which BTW, is becoming ever more expensive. Prices of basics tend to be fundamental to most people of modest incomes and very little faith in those who habitually dress in suit and ties.

Posted by: aristodemos | Sep 19 2022 21:42 utc | 74

The voluntary destruction WEF theory is by far the most plausible explanation.

It really was a masterpiece to hand us over this last trench of wef puppets. People like Habeck, Baerbock, Truss, van der leyen made the "ah its just stupidity" theory believable.

Posted by: Orgel | Sep 19 2022 21:45 utc | 75

PeterAU @50
If most Russian troops are contracted and the contracts last 6 months, (according to Dima), do the rotations count as time served?
Because if all those troops were on solid 6 months contracts we would have a big reason to worry right now.

Posted by: wagelaborer | Sep 19 2022 21:48 utc | 76

Brother Ma @34

Why Bojo, you ask. It is primarily a matter of propinquity and tradition. Johnson maintained his Downing Street residence within a fairly close jaunt to City of London. That nest of shot calling Bank$ters have long controlled the "Crown", as well as the Bank of England. Anyhoo, even the previous Clown of the Commons does tend to be a bit more presentable than his depends upon Depends counterpart in the Di$trict of Corruption.

Posted by: aristodemos | Sep 19 2022 21:50 utc | 77

The difference between military operation and war
That would be a radical change in the situation, because no matter how much the Western media fantasize that Russia would act unrestrainedly and brutally in the conflict, it is simply not true, as I know from my own experience and from countless people in Donbass. Even in completely destroyed cities like Mariupol, Volnovakha or Severodonetsk, people unanimously told me that the destruction was caused by Ukrainian shelling. The Russian army is (so far) relatively cautious.

Russia speaks of a military operation against the Ukrainian Nazi government for precisely this reason, and not of a war against Ukraine. This is why the civilian infrastructure in Ukraine is also still functioning, because at least the electricity supply, which helps the opposing army, would be a legitimate military target in many parts of Ukraine, but the Russian army is not shelling them. This also applies to many other things, because in Ukraine life on the other side of the front is largely normal, there is water, electricity, heating and so on. If Russia saw itself at war with Ukraine, none of this would exist and the Russian army would have advanced much further because it would have been less considerate and there would have been less resistance.

The game changer?
Ukraine's successful offensive near Kharkov could be a game changer, because together with the massive shelling of Donetsk and the now almost daily shelling of Russian territory by Ukraine, Moscow could recognize the planned referenda and then officially be at war with Ukraine, which would free up the hands of the Russian army to crack down.

Indisputably, the Ukrainian offensive was only successful because it was actively supported by the United States and because Ukraine is now also benefiting from the massive arms deliveries from the West. However, considering how many weapons the West sent to Ukraine, the effect is modest, because Russia now faces the combined military might of the entire West, and gaining a few tens of kilometers of territory is not an impressive achievement.

Because of Western weapons, the previous cautious strategy of the Russian military operation may no longer be sufficient for success, which is why the referendums and the subsequent unification of the Donbass republics could be the beginning of a tougher Russian approach and a faster Russian advance.

Russian manuscript
In addition, such an approach would suit Putin. Putin is a lawyer and you notice that all the time when you have dealt with him as intensively as I have. For example, Putin did not simply order the military operation, but first prepared it in formal legal terms.
Continue reading :

Posted by: Mo3 | Sep 19 2022 21:53 utc | 78

In response to cirsium@68,

Maybe the idea is to get rid off refugees and economic migrants? Force them to return home or seek greener pastures elsewhere? It would be logical if, supposing the situation in Europe becomes sufficiently unstable, the first emigrants out of Europe would be the most recent arrivals, particularly if they haven't been properly integrated and don't have ties in their countries of residence, or still have ties in their home countries.

The thought never struck me before, but now I can't shake the image of a flea-ridden dog jumping into a pool of water to get some relief, though it is by no means my intention to denigrate migrants with such a comparison. What's more, the waters in the pool are far from calm and there's no guarantee that the dog will be able to swim to safety. It's difficult for me to imagine taking such an enormous risk just for this cynical ploy, when I'm sure there would be other more gradual alternatives available.

Posted by: Skiffer | Sep 19 2022 21:56 utc | 79

Posted by: Mo3 | Sep 19 2022 21:53 utc | 77

Excellent point, just like the recognition of the Republics was the prelude for the Special Operation, the full integration of Lugansk which is wholly liberated, followed by Kherson and eventually Donetsk when fully liberated would technically turn the SO into a full blown war. You're right, Putin is a lawyer and as such words and definitions are very important.

Posted by: Paco | Sep 19 2022 21:59 utc | 80

The US gas bubble has already burst.
Fracking is a temporary thing. It's like shaking a soda bottle and then opening it, there is a burst of gas and then only small bubbles.
It takes more fossil fuel energy to frack than you get in return, so fracking is more about the money speculation than actually producing gas (which is why you can see them flaring it off into the atmosphere so many times).

Posted by: wagelaborer | Sep 19 2022 17:56 utc | 15

No, you are wrong. Completely wrong, except maybe for the timestamp.

Natural gas is like any other extracted resource. The easy plays were always extracted in the past, that's why exploration and production needs to keep a steady pace to maintain long term supply. And it needs a steady regulatory regime to do that.

Which it has not had in the West for the past 20 years, because Western elites are fools who decided to intranally inject their own Fossil Fuels = Bad Kool Aid. as President Putin referenced.

They could've saved themselves a lot of hassle, money and ruined landscapes (not to mention the coming economic hellscape of their own creation) by just building a bunch of nukes. But atomic power is - ooh! scary! - so here we are.

Posted by: ZX | Sep 19 2022 22:00 utc | 81

59 Stierlitz 20h53

In Wolfrathausen,Bavaria a Kazachstan man naturalized German was fined 1800 euros and 30 days interdiction to drive his car,because he had for some time a letter Z about 20 cm on the trunk of his car.At the moment of his arrest it wasn't even there,only showing duct tape marks.The ukranian wife of his boss had put a complaint at the police station.
This recalls the buzz about "Z" en "V" on allied vehicles at the start of SMO.Has anyone a clue yet,what it means or intent to provoke?
Just this evening watching episode 8 from the soviet series "Seventeen moments of spring" I noticed that at 19m50sec there is a long shot of a "Z" on a pillar when Stierlitz brings a handcuffed gestapo-officer to his superior Mueller,who is harbouring a big "V" on the left sleeve of his SS-uniform,as is Mueller's factotum secretary whose name is Scholz.Uncanny hasard or are the russians deliberately trolling with this in mind.

Notably also that in the same episode in the Dulles-Wolf encounter to discuss how to keep communism out of Germany and Western Europe,the americans are involved in choosing the next Kanzler,the minister of interior,foreign affairs ,finance.

It would be great if one Russian speaker or Ukranian speaker could give us some information about what "Z" and "V" mean to him.

Posted by: willie | Sep 19 2022 22:01 utc | 82

PJB @70--

There are times when it pays to review excellent analysis, in your case this Dr. Hudson essay, "The Dollar Devours the Euro" or the other three similar essays that preceded it. Summation of his Intro:

"Russia’s preemptive defense of the two Eastern Ukrainian provinces and its subsequent military destruction of the Ukrainian army, navy and air force over the past two months has been used as the excuse to start imposing the U.S.-designed sanctions program that we are seeing unfolding today. Western Europe has dutifully gone along whole-hog. Instead of buying Russian gas, oil and food grains, it will buy these from the United States, along with sharply increased arms imports."

Hudson then proceeds to back his thesis:

It therefore is appropriate to look at how this is likely to affect Western Europe’s balance of payments and hence the euro’s exchange rate against the dollar.

European trade and investment prior to the War to Impose Sanctions had promised a rising mutual prosperity between Germany, France and other NATO countries vis-à-vis Russia and China. Russia was providing abundant energy at a competitive price, and this energy was to make a quantum leap with Nord Stream 2. Europe was to earn the foreign exchange to pay for this rising import trade by a combination of exporting more industrial manufactures to Russia and capital investment in developing the Russian economy, e.g. by German auto companies and financial investment. This bilateral trade and investment is now stopped – and will remain stopped for many, many years, given NATO’s confiscation of Russia’s foreign reserves kept in euros and British sterling, and Europe’s Russophobia being fanned by U.S. propaganda media.

In its place, NATO countries will purchase U.S. LNG – but they will need to spend billions of dollars building sufficient port capacity, which may take until perhaps 2024. (Good luck until then.) The energy shortage will sharply raise the world price of gas and oil. NATO countries also will step up their purchases of arms from the U.S. military-industrial complex. The near-panic buying will also raise the price for arms. And food prices also will rise as a result of the desperate grain shortfalls resulting from a cessation of imports from Russia and Ukraine on the one hand, and the shortage of ammonia fertilizer made from gas.

All three of these trade dynamics will strengthen the dollar vis-à-vis the euro. The question is, how will Europe balance its international payments with the United States? What does it have to export that the U.S. economy will accept as its own protectionist interests gain influence, now that global free trade is dying quickly?

The answer is, not much. So what will Europe do?

Hudson published that essay 5 months ago and what he predicted has unfolded. Then there's the second half of the essay at the link. As you read, it's very useful to review what was written months ago by astute analysts, which unfortunately in the West are few.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 19 2022 22:02 utc | 83

@cirsium | Sep 19 2022 21:26 utc | 68

Also, there is a big question that nobody want to ask:
Monsanto is the biggest landowner in Ukraine, and it seems to me that GMO cropping is enabled since 2014/2015. So, how much of that 'precious' Ukr grain is GMO, and is this can be the real reason that some countries refuse to accept it?

Posted by: ldragon | Sep 19 2022 22:03 utc | 84

.... In the end we are all just spectators.

Posted by: Dan Farrand | Sep 19 2022 18:53 utc | 28

I wouldn't trust your observations and assessments.

re: Mann Friedmann | Sep 19 2022 18:57 utc | 32

excellent! Confronting normies is one thing we can do, though the response is likely to be "covidian". On occaisions, I can emit an impressive load of profanity, but it does behove us to be effective in our "proselytzing", which means appropriate use of language.

Posted by: tucenz | Sep 19 2022 22:04 utc | 85


Nice to see your perspective on V.V. Putin, as a forthright and thoughtful individual. In my estimation he will go down in history as the greatest and most influential statesman since Bismarck...and that's almost 150 years ago.

Posted by: aristodemos | Sep 19 2022 22:07 utc | 86

People are expecting too much.

Europe in winter is not quite the arctic. Even Northern Europe.

People already have insulated homes to live in and lots of warm clothes and blankets.

So they will be a bit colder inside, so what? Then spring will arrive a couple of months later.

People can get by with a limited time of slight hardship.

Here is what is really explosive: High inflation plus unemployment.

As someone here said, Europeans have been enjoying a hedonistic carefree lifestyle since the 90s.

Modest but sophisticated lifestyle, travel, interesting hobbies, festivals, theatres, livable cities, “cool“ jobs.

The European Goodlife - not like fat dumb yanks driving from mall to mall.

This was based on cheap energy, neo colonial tribute, and expanding consumer credit.

These are rapidly slamming into a wall, thus the hedonistic lifestyle is no longer affordable.

For many people this will cause an explosion of narcissistic rage.

Where this rage can be directed is unclear.

European citizens threw European values gleefully into the trash can, are embracing brainrot chauvinism and even outright fascism.

The Cool European Guy glances around, guiltily, furtively, greedily. Who will he blame? Maybe his parents?

What will his smartphone tell him to do?

Posted by: Moaobserver | Sep 19 2022 22:07 utc | 87

LYFH@ 61

Do I detect a faint whiff of concern troll in this posting?

Posted by: aristodemos | Sep 19 2022 22:12 utc | 88

@ karlof1 | Sep 19 2022 22:02 utc | 82

What does it (Europe) have to export that the U.S. economy will accept as its own protectionist interests gain influence, now that global free trade is dying quickly?

Mr. Hudson is an old fox, so I'm surprised he couldn't see the obvious answer to the last question: GOLD

Posted by: ldragon | Sep 19 2022 22:16 utc | 89

wagelaborer | Sep 19 2022 21:48 utc | 75

From what I understand, the new volunteer third corps have/can choose short term contracts of varying lengths. I would guess contracts in the regular military would be longer but have seen no information.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Sep 19 2022 22:28 utc | 90

@ Idragon 83

European countries are not allowed to consume GM crops. So if European countries are buying them, they must be intended for re-sale to somewhere that is allowed to eat them. I believe the world is going to be blackmailed into kowtowing to USUKIS if it wants to eat. Blackmail to agree with our politics, blackmail to sow sterile GM seed, and blackmail to eat the poisonous stuff.

What Mr Putin has just told us, that the West refuses to release free Russian grain to poor countries who need it confirms my fear that USUKIS wants to weaponise grain. They are hoarding grain in silos in USUKIS - affiliated countries in order to starve poorer countries into political compliance.

Evil isn't evil enough to describe it.
Desperation of a criminal Gangster mafia .

Posted by: Giyane | Sep 19 2022 22:32 utc | 91

Putin is a lawyer and as such words and definitions are very important.

Posted by: Paco | Sep 19 2022 21:59 utc | 79

As if Putin being a lawyer matters, the conclusion is a total non-sequitur. Obama was supposedly a trained lawyer and alleged Constitutional expert, who then sidestepped it as often as possible. Biden was also a lawyer who may or may not have practiced briefly.

None of them had any significant legal experience.

Posted by: Opport Knocks | Sep 19 2022 22:33 utc | 92

Posted by: wagelaborer | Sep 19 2022 21:48 utc | 75

Because if all those troops were on solid 6 months contracts we would have a big reason to worry right now.

A reasonable explanation for the slowdown in RF actitivity and the withdrawal to the Oskil.

Is supported by the recruitment drive in RF prisons by Wagner and by the urgencey of the LPR DPR stated intent to hold referenda on joining RF as soon as possible i.e. within a week of today.

Such a political realignment would permit RF to deploy its regular forces within the "new" RF territories.

Posted by: Sushi | Sep 19 2022 22:34 utc | 93

ZX @80--

You are incorrect in your critique of wagelaborer @15, and you even provide the reason why you're wrong. Yes, the easy plays are tapped first then the more difficult later. Fracking is desperation difficult and was indeed the financial play described. The zero interest rate and massive money printing by Fed after the Massive Banker Fraud Crime of 2007-8 provided the ground base for the fracking Ponzi Scheme which came to an end with the pandemic's restrictions. Fracking depletion rates are so steep many more wells must be drilled to keep extraction even, but there's a finite number that can be drilled and Bust has again followed Boom. The only way to enable those wells to be drilled was the cheap money and that's now gone. This WSJ article confirms fracking downturn by private drillers who were the only ones remaining as public majors have mostly withdrawn for economic reasons.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 19 2022 22:34 utc | 94

It is now clear to everyone that Germany was right to trust Russia, because after slander, sanctions and sending heavy weapons to Ukraine, Russia still agrees to this day to open Nord Stream II and supply her with gas in abundance and at the best price.

The day Germany votes against a US resolution at the UN, we will see if she gets any more LNG.

Posted by: Marjorie | Sep 19 2022 22:35 utc | 95

@Giyane | Sep 19 2022 22:32 utc | 90
the West refuses to release free Russian grain to poor countries. . . in order to starve poorer countries into political compliance.
Yes, these are the countries that refused to sanction or otherwise act against Russia.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 19 2022 22:43 utc | 96

Sushi & wagelaborer

My understanding of contracts vs in this case regular military is that either side can choose to renew them or not renew them.
Contract higher pay but no guarantee of long term employment, regular or salaried positions less pay but guarantee of long term employment.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Sep 19 2022 22:45 utc | 97

Russia should target Ukraine's bridges over the Dniper and its southern branches, all powerplants and fuel facilities. Winter will take care of the rest.

As wheat exports from Ukraine only benefit Turkey and other rich countries, Russia should block it again. Odessa is a legitimate target.

Russia should locally manufacture loitering attack drones following Iranian designs which are very effective.

China is losing a great opportunity to test their weapons against NATO weapons in Ukraine. China should supply weapons to Russia and assess how they perform against the best of NATO. Otherwise China will find it the hard way they need some improvements when NATO attacks Chinese territory.

Posted by: Jason | Sep 19 2022 22:49 utc | 98

Posted by: Opport Knocks | Sep 19 2022 22:33 utc | 91

It very much depends upon whether you believe in the law or not. Also there is a difference between a smart lawyer and a run of the mill worker. All Aussies will know what I mean by "its the vibe" (older ones anyway) to show up the difference between a good lawyer and one out of his depth.

In the USA, the law is used to score points off others, rather than as a means of seeking justice/fairness. That is the way the game is played. Not so sure about Europe. I suspect that jurisdictions with a jury system are much more likely to have lawyers as showmen rather than legalistic law practitioners.

Posted by: watcher | Sep 19 2022 22:51 utc | 99

@Giyane | Sep 19 2022 22:32 utc | 90

Maybe You are right about hoarding, but with such corrupt politicians and administration, I'm not sure does anybody in Europe is really certain in what consumes.

We, consumers are dependent on certain institutions to control the quality of food we consumes. It is hard to distinct between GMO bread and natural/organic one.

Posted by: ldragon | Sep 19 2022 22:57 utc | 100

next page »

The comments to this entry are closed.