Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
June 27, 2023

How To Plant Propaganda: "Putin has been weakened. Russia is crumbling."

On Sunday the U.S.Secretary of State went on four morning shows to play the same distinct melody over and over again:

Secretary Antony J. Blinken With Margaret Brennan of CBS Face the Nation

SECRETARY BLINKEN: And it was a direct challenge to Putin’s authority. So this raises profound questions. It shows real cracks. We can’t speculate or know exactly where that’s going to go. We do know that Putin has a lot more to answer for in the weeks and months ahead.
...
SECRETARY BLINKEN: These create more cracks in the Russian façade, and those cracks were already profound. Economically, militarily, its standing in the world – all of those things have been dramatically diminished by Putin’s aggression against Ukraine. He’s managed to bring Europe together. He’s managed to bring NATO together. He’s managed to get Europe to move off of Russian energy. He’s managed to alienate Ukrainians and unite Ukraine at the same time. So across the board this has been a strategic failure. Now you introduce into that profound internal divisions, and there are lots of questions he’s going to have to answer in the weeks ahead.

Secretary Antony J. Blinken With Chuck Todd of NBC Meet The Press

SECRETARY BLINKEN: ... So I think we’ve seen more cracks emerge in the Russian facade. It is too soon to tell exactly where they go and when they get there. But certainly we have all sorts of new questions that Putin is going to have to address in the weeks and months ahead.
...
This is just the latest chapter in a book of failure that Putin has written for himself and for Russia. Economically, militarily, its standing in the world – all of things have plummeted. We have a united NATO that’s stronger than ever before, a Europe that is weaning itself off of Russian energy, Ukraine that Putin has managed to alienate and unite at the same time. Now, with trouble brewing from within, this, as I said, just adds more questions that he has to find answers for.

Secretary Antony J. Blinken With Dana Bash of CNN State of the Union

SECRETARY BLINKEN: But we can say this. First of all, what we’ve seen is extraordinary, and I think you see cracks emerge that weren’t there before ...
...
We’ve seen this aggression against Ukraine become a strategic failure across the board. Russia is weaker economically, militarily. Its standing around the world has plummeted. It’s managed to get Europeans off of Russian energy. It’s managed to unite and strengthen NATO with new members and a stronger Alliance. It’s managed to alienate from Russia and unite together Ukraine in ways that it’s never been before. This is just an added chapter to a very, very bad book that Putin has written for Russia.

Secretary Antony J. Blinken With Jonathan Karl of ABC This Week

SECRETARY BLINKEN: But I think we can say this much: First, we’ve seen some very serious cracks emerge.
...
But we’ve seen, I think, lots of different cracks that have emerged in the conduct of this aggression, because everything Putin has tried to accomplish, the opposite has happened. Russia is weaker economically. It’s weaker militarily. Its standing in the world has plummeted. It’s managed to strengthen and unite NATO. It’s managed to alienate and unite Ukrainians. It’s managed to get Europe off of dependence on Russian energy.

In piece after piece, issue after issue, what Putin has tried to prevent, he’s managed to precipitate. And Russia’s standing is vastly diminished as a result. Now, add to that internal dissention. Again, we can’t speculate on where this goes. We have to remain and we are focused on Ukraine, but it certainly raises new questions that he’s going to have to address.

The very same (false) talking points, repeated over and over again, are a sure sign of lies and an organized propaganda campaign.

For the record. Progozhin was all alone in his mutiny attempt. Not one element of the Russian government or civil society joint him in his ride. So where are the cracks? There are none. Also Russia's military is now larger and better equipped then before the war. Russia's economy is fine and growing. Its standing in the world has increased.

But Blinken's propaganda works well because the U.S. media are trained to pick up any sheet of music an administration hands out and to sing its tune over and over again.

I could quote dozens of participants in that game to make that point. But the Washington Posts has made it easier for me when it asked eight of its columnists to comment on the issues. All but one, a neocon who wants to see more action, repeat Blinken's message: "Putin has been weakened. Russia is crumbling."

Opinion What happened in Russia — and what happens next? Our columnists weigh in.

David Von Drehle: Even failed coups have consequences

Putin evidently had no more confidence than Prigozhin as to the outcome of the clash. Rather than test the loyalty and strength of government forces to crush the uprising, the Russian leader grabbed the first exit he was offered — a sign of weakness that might invite another attempt. ... The bad news: A weakened Russia has weakened leaders and is spinning out of control. Putin has taken his country into a disaster, and there is no one in sight to save it.

Max Boot: Prigozhin has made Putin’s weakness clear to everyone

Putin, has now had his own legitimacy undermined by the revolt of Prigozhin and his Wagner Group mercenaries. Whether the damage is fatal remains to be determined. ... Even if Prigozhin is gone, the discontent he has revealed will remain an Achilles’ heel for Putin.

David Ignatius: After dodging the bullet, Putin will need to show he’s in control

Putin’s vulnerabilities were vividly on display last weekend, but so were his uncanny survival skills. He got inside Prigozhin’s conspiratorial plot and stopped it. ... Putin will need to show that he’s in command now, after this near-death experience. That’s the bad news for Ukraine and Russia both.

Eugene Robinson: Putin is likely to survive this crisis

The revolt by the mercenary butcher Prigozhin did reveal Putin’s regime to be more brittle than it had appeared from afar.

Charles Lane: Prigozhin is the only Russian to publicly speak the truth

Vaclav Havel insisted that truth still exercised a mysterious, but latent, power.

It can unexpectedly “issue forth … in something visible: a real political act or event, a social movement, a sudden explosion of civil unrest, a sharp conflict inside an apparently monolithic power structure, or simply an irrepressible transformation in the social and intellectual climate,” Havel wrote. “And since all genuine problems and matters of critical importance are hidden beneath a thick crust of lies, it is never quite clear when the proverbial last straw will fall, or what that straw will be.”

Spy, oligarch, warlord — Prigozhin was an unlikely candidate to confirm Havel’s prophecy. But in a way, he did.

Jason Willick: Chances for escalation in Ukraine have gone up

Some observers might be overstating Putin’s weakness — he did suppress the mutiny quickly, after all — but the spectacle has clearly dented his image of control.

Josh Rogin: Prigozhin’s failed gambit is an opportunity for the West

Now that the Kremlin can no longer pretend Wagner is a separate entity, Russian government and defense officials must also be held accountable for Wagner’s worldwide crimes, which include credible allegations of mass murder, torture, rape and other atrocities.

Megan McArdle: Turmoil in Russia shows the fragility of illiberalism

Nominally, Putin controls a massive army, a substantial police force and a population that returned him to office in 2018 with a resounding 77 percent of the vote. But when push came to shove, those same folks were indifferent between him and a murderous warlord — or, at least, didn’t care enough about the distinction to risk getting shot. Putin survived, but the risk to his regime has risen now that it is clear how little actual support he has.

The overall tone: Putin did not fight the loon Prigozhin but found a peaceful solution. This shows that he is weak.

This bears a question. If eight columnists at one paper come to the very same (but false) conclusion, just issued in different words, why hire and pay all eight of them? Clearly, one would suffice.

Oh, that would show a lack diversity? The religious believe in individualism where all humans must differ - but for the opinions they are allowed to espouse?

Posted by b on June 27, 2023 at 15:43 UTC | Permalink

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Trust the Plan? (Re: Prigozhin)

Two street cleaners is coincidence. Three street cleaners is enemy action.

When I first visited Donetsk in the summer of 2016, one of the striking oddities was how clean and beautiful the city was. The main streets swept every night around midnight by street sweeping trucks. (Curfew was at 10 pm.) Parks and streets were full of freshly planted flowers. This peacefulness was an illusion. Artillery battles in the suburbs started almost every night around 9 pm.

Considering this, I do not find it extraordinary to see street cleaners in the middle of a war zone. Western commenters on Twitter were however amazed by photos of a street cleaner in central Rostov on Saturday morning, across the street from the headquarters of the Southern Military District with the Wagner tanks in the background. I found it strange however, that there are photos and videos of at least three different street cleaners sweeping the same sidewalk in the same street corner. My suspicion was that these are in fact FSB or GRU agents monitoring the situation.

Even more curious is the video interview of one of the street cleaners.

- Everything is going according to plan.

- You mean all fucked up?

- No, everything is going according to the plan.

How would the street sweeper know, unless he was in the know?

***

Alexander Mercouris believes, that Prigozhin genuinely frying to stage a coup. I tend to agree more with Big Serge, who believes the mutiny was more like a business negotiation. In fact, most of what was "agreed" was arranged in advance. Prigozhin's remaining Wagner will move to newly built bases in Belarus and maybe concentrate on business opportunities in Africa. The rest will sign agreements with the Russian MoD and join regular Russian forces.

I still believe that Prigozhin won. He humiliated Shoigu. This was a pissing contest, or more precisely, a contest on who has the longest dick. Prigozhin showed that his dick is 500 km long. Shoigu had nothing to show in response.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Jun 27 2023 15:45 utc | 1

Another classic case of whatever narrative the MSM are pushing from every direction, believe the opposite. Thanks b.

Posted by: Watzov | Jun 27 2023 15:47 utc | 2

thanks b... i can't read this stupid shit from blinken and company...

here is a relevant quote from kissinger.."It is not a matter of what is true that counts, but a matter of what is perceived to be true."

Posted by: james | Jun 27 2023 15:50 utc | 3

Seems like a coordinated western propaganda operation
In Germany & Suisse EVERY TV channel Respectivly EVERY Medium is using the WEAK word in connection with Russia but nonstop every hour 10 times in each broadcast
Democratic brainwash 2023

Posted by: Hartz4ukr | Jun 27 2023 15:50 utc | 4

Frankly putin did well to resolve quickly and before violence got out of hand

Posted by: Neofeudalfuture | Jun 27 2023 15:56 utc | 5

There is no way such demonstrably false messaging can backfire.

"Do not stare into laser with other eye" levels of boomerang.

Posted by: too scents | Jun 27 2023 15:56 utc | 6

No doubt, the first casualty of war is the truth.

b's thread, the Moon of Alabama, has so many good commentators that one can get pretty close to the truth after reading through the posts.

With all the fog of war everywhere to be found, getting close to the truth so quickly is doing pretty good.

The internet with such blogs and many good commentators allows the discerning world to know the truth much faster than at anytime in history.

Posted by: young | Jun 27 2023 15:58 utc | 7

I gather from one of today's headlines, "Putinism" is the antithesis of "professionalism" in the US American world of "democratized" national security.

Posted by: sln2002 | Jun 27 2023 16:04 utc | 8

@ Petri Krohn | Jun 27 2023 15:45 utc 1

Does Shoigu need answering to the 500 km long dick Prighozin? He is paid to manage the resources and equipment for the SMO not to perform PR statements.

Posted by: scc | Jun 27 2023 16:05 utc | 9

I guess the alphabet soup is a little sore about that 6 billion bribe getting confiscated and nothing to show for it. See how they're not trumpeting the aircraft losses in this coordinated media campaign? Because their evidence is unconvincing and their only primary source is - ironically - Putin. It's enough to make one spit out ones coffee.

Thrse people are risible propagandists who will be remembered as such. Max Boot is completely insufferable, right down to his stupid fucking name. They occupy privileged perches in the media not due to journalistic talent or ability to write but rather their whorish nature of happily lying for whomever throws them a few pennies.

Posted by: Doctor Eleven | Jun 27 2023 16:05 utc | 10

Just in at Aljazeera:

"President Alexander Lukashenko, who quelled the feud between the Wagner Group and Russia, confirms that mercenary chief Yevgeny Prigozhin has arrived in Belarus.“We offered them one of the abandoned military bases,” Lukashenko says, referring to exiled Wagner fighters who have been invited to live in Belarus under the deal he brokered."

Posted by: ThusspakeZarathustra | Jun 27 2023 16:07 utc | 11

Petri Krohn @ 1

Alexander Mercouris is one of the best geo-political commentators around. He and Alex Christoforou are a great pair to achieve a good grasp of the world situation.

Mercouris has often retracted something he has said if he gets wind that he may have spoken incorrectly. One humble guy for sure.

Posted by: young | Jun 27 2023 16:07 utc | 12

1, Putin himself has repeatedly used plural "traitors" and on-going investigations in his speeches during and after the apparent putsch. "No one [joined] him" does not diminish the fact of "very few moved to resist him".

2, It is disingenuous to frame this as falsely arriving at a conclusion of "weakness" because of the response of Putin and Russian Federation security services. If blood had flowed it would not be a sign of "strenght" of Putin's regime either. The simple matter -- that you are doing a good job of ignoring -- is that the political system of Putin has weaknesses that were not anticipated by Putin and allies when they created this system. No one expected an oligarch with little elite support to challenge the head of the quasi-fedual system of Putin's Russia. Not Putin nor his advisors. That is the weakness that has been exposed -- a vassal turned populist is shown to be a regime killer vector. That is a chink in the armour.

3, Putin physically looked ashen and for the first time diminished. This event appears to have shaken Putin himself. This is a subjective reading and you are free to disagree, but there is defeat in his eyes now. I actually felt sad for him.

Posted by: yesbored | Jun 27 2023 16:07 utc | 13

From B.’s article on the topic of propaganda in 2018:


…….Early in life I have noticed that no event is ever correctly reported in a newspaper, but in Spain, for the first time, I saw newspaper reports which did not bear any relation to the facts, not even the relationship which is implied in an ordinary lie. I saw great battles reported where there had been no fighting, and complete silence where hundreds of men had been killed.

I saw troops who had fought bravely denounced as cowards and traitors, and others who had never seen a shot fired hailed as the heroes of imaginary victories; and I saw newspapers in London retailing these lies and eager intellectuals building emotional superstructures over events that had never happened.

I saw, in fact, history being written not in terms of what happened but of what ought to have happened according to various ‘party lines’.
George Orwell, Looking back on the Spanish War, Chapter 4……

Link to B’s full article
https://www.moonofalabama.org/2018/04/the-media-war-on-truthful-reporting-and-legitimate-opinions-a-documentary.html

Posted by: Exile | Jun 27 2023 16:09 utc | 14

Potsted by: young | Jun 27 2023 15:58 utc | 8
The internet with such blogs and many good commentators allows the discerning world to know the truth much faster than at anytime in history.

That ability seems to be coming under serious attack now throughout the western world and the effort to "know the truth" grows more difficult all the time.

Posted by: SwissArmyMan | Jun 27 2023 16:10 utc | 15

@ Petri Krohn | Jun 27 2023 15:45 utc 1

Let's see... Shoigu is still comfortable in his position, while Prigozhin has been expelled from the country. I think he stepped on that dick for all 500 KM.

Posted by: JT | Jun 27 2023 16:10 utc | 16

Blinken and the WP are pretty low hanging fruit, but it is Taco Tuesday with half price tequila shots so...

Propaganda for the west is like water in a fish bowl and we are guppies. It's ALL propaganda to create a fantasy world while the breakaway civilization breaks away and billions are left for dead, deserted and forgotten and wondering where it all went wrong. Spoiler alert: Greed.

At this point Putin is more like Jesus facing off against the Great Satan of the USA. The gods work in mysterious ways.

Posted by: gottlieb | Jun 27 2023 16:10 utc | 17

Prigozhin is a mercenary. A mercenary sells to the highest bidder. That is all.

Posted by: Passerby | Jun 27 2023 16:11 utc | 18

Vladimir Putin response to Prighozin coup or whatever it was supposed to be was appropriate. It suffice reading the comments of the NYT and US official about how deluded they were that no bloodshed happened.

Posted by: scc | Jun 27 2023 16:11 utc | 19

b said,

This bears a question. If eight columnists at one paper come to the very same (but false) conclusion, just issued in different words, why hire and pay all eight of them? Clearly, one would suffice.

Job creation- THE amerikkkan Way®...

It is 8x!!!

(Sorry, can't help to be sarcastic.)

Posted by: LuRenJia | Jun 27 2023 16:12 utc | 20

This is what Prigozhin has accomplished with his stunt and will spend the rest of his life in custody as a result.

Posted by: chunga | Jun 27 2023 16:13 utc | 21

Thanks for the posting b

What are all these talking heads going to do when the propaganda they are paid to spew comes back to haunt them? The fall is not going to be pretty but many of us will cheer its happening.

The shit show continues feeding us MoA barfleas until it doesn't and you just have to laugh at the ones that spew.... "there is defeat in his (Putin's) eyes now".

Empire has the best propaganda money can buy but propaganda won't win wars on the ground, only temporarily in peoples minds

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jun 27 2023 16:19 utc | 22

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Jun 27 2023 15:45 utc | 1

Let's recap. Here's yer boy, Big Serge (2 June) The Battle of Bakhmut: Postmortem, pondering the mysteries of Wagner's "loss ratio", according to G7 napkin estimates and modified Pareto formula.

Among the positively identified KIA, convicts outnumber professional PMC operators by about 2.6 to 1 (that is, Wagner’s dead would be about 73% CONVICTS ). According to the Pentagon, however (taken with a large grain of salt), nearly 90% of Wagner’s losses are CONVICTS. Taking a conservative 75/25 split and rounding the numbers to make them pretty, my estimate is that Wagner lost about 13,000 convicts and 4,000 PROFESSIONAL operators. Adding in VDV losses and motorized rifle units fighting on the flanks, and total Russian KIA in Bakhmut are likely on the order of 20-22,000.

Posted by: sln2002 | Jun 27 2023 16:23 utc | 23

In response to Wim@401,

When I read the latest posts at Donbass Devushka the conclusion would be that Prigozhin just got emotional. That he received a couple of soldiers who came back from the front telling how bad things were organized at the Russian sides and how many died unnecessarily as a consequence of that. And that he then went to Rostov to get this fixed by having Putin fire Shoigu and Gerasimov.

This sums up how Lukashenko described his conversation with Prigozhin, what his stated motivation was.

At the same time, it's worth keeping in mind what the Wagner organization was before the start of the SMO. It was a cloak and daggers outfit, established by GU or former elements thereof, where all assets were deniable and disposable. Wagners were sent places where official armed forces weren't supposed to be, without backup, to kill or be killed for substantial paychecks, without guarantee of any recognition for their service or even a proper burial.

Everyone's dusting off their Russian to write "maskirovka," it's time to learn another phrase -- "utka." Literally translates as "duck," it's the Russian version of red herring. Enter Dmitry Utkin, the founder of the Wagner organization -- his entire existence confirmed solely by liberal rags hunting down photos of bald guys. Same rags who already discredited themselves by profiling photos of babushkas at rallies. Has made no statements ever, no appearances ever, everything about him is exclusively hearsay and guesswork -- supposedly active in the field, still in command, was in the vanguard of the second Wagner detachment heading for Moscow, expected to return to command of reformed Wagner 2.0. Fictional construct created to take the spotlight off GU and MOD.

Prigozhin, the official bald face of the Wagner organization information department, press contact, media organizer. Makes no military or organizational decisions -- not owner, or manager, or commander. Wagner's version of Peskov. Again, pseudo-fictional construct to take spotlight off Utkin, whose fictional persona is unsuitable for PR.

We're supposed to think that this front organization for GU black-ops, through its media manager, took on a life of its own and went rogue, trying to topple the Russian government. At the conclusion of which, everyone's pardoned, reinstated, partly integrated into the regular army, partly exiled to a neighboring country based on personal preference. I guess it's possible.

Posted by: Skiffer | Jun 27 2023 16:25 utc | 24

In balance, this nonsense may work out for Russia.

The West pushes for an armistice in a month or so. Their new narrative will be, "we saved (rump) Ukraine and prevented an invasion of the Baltic states. We left Russia greatly weakened. Victory !" ( "tis but a scratch")

Posted by: Eighthman | Jun 27 2023 16:26 utc | 25

Today Putin gave two short addresses that I posted in full with very limited commentary to the Ukie open thread here I strongly suggest all barflies read. As for Putin's appearance over the last 48 hours, I doubt he got much sleep and at 70 one can easily look haggard when that occurs. As for the gross bullshit b reported on, well what does one expect from the Empire of Lies? All of it was for internal consumption, thus begging the question: How will Russia's victory in Ukraine be explained? And how can any sort of negotiation take place given such bullshit as Crooke asks in his brilliant essay, "The Negotiator's Nightmare". Otherwise, I have no more to say about the lies fed to us by our Propaganda System. I will say that IMO Larry Johnson's hypothesis about Prigozhin's antics looks more correct as more becomes known, and the lies told Sunday can be seen as a form of cover-up for the Outlaw US Empire's ineptitude.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 27 2023 16:30 utc | 26

This is just another sign of the desperation in Washington. They were counting on this stunt to turn the tide, instead it dribbled down their legs. This is no surprise, there are no Russia experts in the west. There are only bitter, dishonest ideological hacks that believe their own hype.

Posted by: nook | Jun 27 2023 16:31 utc | 27

b. Thanks again.

Yes, a false narrative is the latest resort of an unimaginative.

It is all blah, and babble, basically from the whole spectrum.
Even Durans, Ritters, MacGregors, and all others are contributing to widen the very same narrative and attach the focus to, in reality, unimportant feature of this cross-phase towards the very serious showdown upcoming with the West.
Here the question is not to ask why did it happen, but how severe and tough the West should be dealt with? I would say it is somehow typical expectation by Russians. Shaping the common opinion for what kind of victory would they like to see.

Putin has a very slow, milling crunch, doing it on the cheap, Prygozhin and the hawks have a much faster escalatory attitude, that might be more expensive and hastened to an all out war while losing the conflict control achieved so far.

Although Putin can understand the need to rump up, he also understands that the way that was enacted by Vagners and some elements there is not a proper path and a method to counter the West.
And the West can trumpet all they want, but sane advice to them would be – prepare to deal with your deceiving lies, and it is not going to be a nice and painless conversation.

Posted by: whirlX | Jun 27 2023 16:32 utc | 28

blinken like every master in foggy bottom since they imposed park in seoul sees the enemy as diem easily killed by sending vickie kagan nuland for cabot lodge.

putin sees

they seem to believe their nakedness is true fashion

Posted by: paddy | Jun 27 2023 16:32 utc | 29

As the decrepit bridges start falling on the poor amerikans living under them , the MSM will still be rah, rah. The lumpenproletariat plebes will still be wasting time time voting for the uniparty or committing slow suicide with drugs and a despirited lifestyle. Biden like obomber has been successful at throwing conjured up money at the corporation's. Medicare for ALL, not so much. Medicaid, cut off millions. Student debt? A living wage? As more and more wealth is transferred upwards and little real wealth is built the suckers will be distracted with more and more fantastical culture War movies. The hedge fund bosses will still be able to pay lower taxes than the fast food workers and on and on. The US/western world won't be able to use the banksters for the neocolonial project as Bretton Woods is dismantled by New monetary systems. Don't laugh too hard, the ruling classes will be stealing from you the wealth they extracted from the poor countries.

Posted by: Bob | Jun 27 2023 16:33 utc | 30

Cool. Now when all the fleas parrot what they saw on CNN we can direct them to this thread. "Talking about Putin being weak needs to go into the 'putin is weak' talking point thread.

I don't think Putin is that worried. He is saddened because he lost a friend, and Russia lost a hero. But there is nobody else in Russia that could possibly garner enough popular support or military support, to even come close to declaring themselves the new leader of Russia without a cacophony of laughter across 11 time zones.

Posted by: UWDude | Jun 27 2023 16:34 utc | 31

SwissArmyMan @ 16

"That ability seems to be coming under serious attack now throughout the western world and the effort to "know the truth" grows more difficult all the time."

RESPONSE: Most of what is out here in the internet world is not worth the time. However, if you know where to look, the truth can be found.

NOTE: I did use the words "discerning world". Part of the key of discernment is knowing who does and who does not have certain truths.

Posted by: young | Jun 27 2023 16:34 utc | 32

My recommendation. Ignore CNN, the BBC and other public nuisances. Who can be interested in the vapourings of Fareed, Anne and the other useless idiots? Considering the following :

1) Wagner has been the only performing participant in the SMO.

2) Priggy was its Inspiring Leader and all-round Grand Panjandrum. His men, fanatically loyal to their ineffable Military Commander and Leader Who Leads From The Front.

3) Priggy's penchant for fancy dress and self-promotion somehow are to be valued more than genuine military men.

ç) And most interesting -- Priggy seemed to blame the Russian military for the awful kerfuffle in Syria.

Also worthy of consideration : an attack or series of attacks on His Brave Boys promted the farce for justice. Must be a Greta fan -- think of all those broken trees.

Posted by: DilNir | Jun 27 2023 16:34 utc | 33

I'm stunned.
Why is what Blinken says on Sunday Morning talk shows significant or event relevant of anything.
He is paid to go out a talk B/S. I'd say he did his job.
What kind of idiot would I have to be to actually listen to it?
There are people who get paid for that as well.

Next I suppose we will want to know what was said at the NY Times or on BBC?

I hope maybe Russia would focus on what's to be done at the front (an with the economy) and leave the talk shows to the people who have time for talk shows.

I can't see that Shoigu has anything to feel responsible for with regard to Prigozins actions - I imagine he was busy doing his job.

As I have heard it described, Prigozin was permitted to take his show on the road to Moscow, but there were some who did not get the memo and so there was problems - requiring that the whole show be shut-down before things got out of control. Maybe that is not what happened. But I get the impression that there are too many commenters relying on this blog (echo chamber) to inform them what is happening in the real world.

Posted by: jared | Jun 27 2023 16:35 utc | 34

Worried that the west has such a conformity of approach and opinion, where is the diversity of view point and approach and governing style that turned Europe into a military and economic power house. Now they prize conformity to the narrative above all else. Once a proud EU citizen with great hopes for a shared future, now I feel abondoned by my culture, adrift.

Posted by: Gerard | Jun 27 2023 16:36 utc | 35

The only crack Blinkers can see is Joe's...

Posted by: DilNir | Jun 27 2023 16:37 utc | 36

"..."It is not a matter of what is true that counts, but a matter of what is perceived to be true."..."
james@3

Perceived by whom? The eight columnists and their audiences, the few who listen to the noise that goes with the cabled wallpaper are unimportant. They don't think so changing their minds doesn't count.
The US and its satellites have become a Totalitarian society of unprecedented tightness. And this tendency to suppress dissent and quiet disagreement, let alone debate, is constantly driven by technological 'advances' which allow the ruling class to monitor opinion to an extent that Orwell never dreamed would be possible.

This discussion, obscure and trivial though it might be, is carefully recorded and analysed, (logarithmically?). All participants are identified and their filed profiles constantly updated.
And just because it can be done- it is illegal, it is pointless. And yet it leads inevitably, as we have seen during the 'disinformation' and 'misinformation' monitoring crazes, to demands for governmental action. To the creation of Assanges all over-truth tellers to be driven mad or buried.

Hence the prosecutions of individuals calling for an end to pouring weaponry into Ukraine. And, here in Canada, the enormous difficulty peace campaigners and other opponents of Ukrainian Nazism have in hiring assembly rooms. And, having hired them, fighting off thugs determined to prevent discussion of Ukraine. Or Israel. Or Capitalism. Or pregnant men and the women who made them so.

What this is leading to is a body politic without a functioning brain- legislatures that make Hitler's Reichstag look like a lively exchange of ideas, a media which pumps out, uncontradicted, increasingly extravagant and dangerous policy perspectives.

In this world the advantage is with those countries with lower living standards, where 'education' is not omnipresent, and where the masses have more important things to do than pretend that their opinions matter on foreign policy matters. Those without TVs or the leisure to sprawl in front of them are better off, the illiterate are spared the poison from the Daily Mail or the NY Times. Those without elected governments are relieved of the burden of watching the Starmers and Sumacs playing with themselves.

Russia has real problems, it has yet to escape the hell into which the Pied Pipers of Wall St and the City, Harvard and Oxbridge led it. But it will. Its people are alive and capable of returning to the mir and communal self rule. But the America that b reveals above, the dull stupidity and the sleazy misdirection, the columnists who have not had a new idea or an honest thought between them in eighty years, the economy a tribute to Ponzi and cheque kiting, the courtiers, like Blinken, surrounding the mafiosa officials. And the courtiers' courtiers, the journalists and TV presenters, themselves surrounded by sychophants and flatterers, bootlickers and careerists- America is in real trouble. Hundreds of millions hierarchically organised to conform- to 'go along to get along.'
And Europe, admiring and attentive, eagerly emulating, aping everything that they see the drunken bully does. The countdown has begun.
A ton of butter begging for a hot knife

Posted by: bevin | Jun 27 2023 16:40 utc | 37

Prigozhin's deraigned putsch was more akin to a school shooting but on a much larger and more dangerous scale. That Putin resolved it with a minimum of casualties is a sign of strength.

https://www.beyondwasteland.net/p/prigozhins-failed-columbine

Posted by: KevinB | Jun 27 2023 16:40 utc | 38

The DPR militia liberated Mariupol all by themselves. Just a reminder DilNir 😀

Posted by: Exile | Jun 27 2023 16:41 utc | 39

Putin has hinted at changes in military command. New commanders should also come from experience and merit on the battlefield. He doesn't directly mention Prigozhin or the event though (naturally).

Shoigu was minister of emergency services back in the 90s under both Yeltsin and Putin. He is also some sort of civilian industry manager by profession. He is probably a good choice in organizing the military industry but criticized by many of lack of military experience or merits, maybe that will be changed.

Posted by: unimperator | Jun 27 2023 16:49 utc | 40

Except for those on the US imperial team, I haven't seen a single internet commentator siding with Prygozhin. He's labeled a traitor which of course is fact.

But he's an unguided projectile which the CIA in one way or another will try to exploit by assassination, making him a full turncoat or another way.

Posted by: xor | Jun 27 2023 16:50 utc | 41

@ bevin | Jun 27 2023 16:40 utc | 38

well said bevin.. thanks for saying all that... in the meantime, kissingers quote still have relevance today.. we live in a world of propaganda here in canada.. everything is upside down.. i don't know how to address it, other then to go for long walks in the forest..

Posted by: james | Jun 27 2023 16:50 utc | 42

I am simply amazed at how strong Biden is in office. He has denied his regime had anything to do with Nordstream being blown up - yet admits he knew about it in advance. Now he denies his regime had anything to do with Progozhin - yet admits he knew about it in advance

It is simply amazing how US regime knew about nuclear Armageddon in advancebbut had nothing to do with end of life in USA

Bring on Kamala - time for an intelligent life force in Oval Office - one who raises a chuckle rather than a death wish

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | Jun 27 2023 16:51 utc | 43

The US is dominated by oligarchical think-tanks which, literally, defined the idea of "think tanks" back over 100 years ago.

The most fundamental of all think-tanks is the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), established back by the Rockefellers, the Fords, the British (via Chatham House), the Carnegies, Old Texas Money, and the Rhodes Scholars (see Chatham House).

The US is not a Democracy. It is not Egalitarian. It is not a meritocracy. The US is an authoritarian state dominated by oligarchs who control its political discourse using money and fearless oppression against anyone who might question their authority--which the oligarchs control because they sit upon literal trillions of dollars amongst their shared reserves.

i don't think I should need to remind anyone of this, but literally nobody on this planet "earns" billions, let alone trillions, of money.

The mechanisms of social control are obvious and open to anyone who wants to bear witness to them.

Posted by: Pacifica Advocate | Jun 27 2023 16:52 utc | 44

It's not over until the US department of stalkers breaks ground for the Green Zone embassy garrison in Ukraine. Set your timers.

vnexpress | US to showcase war reconcilliation in HCMC, 10 Apr
vnexpress | Blinken breaks ground on $1.2B embassy compound, 14 Apr

A word of advice to budding orientalists: If you see symmptoms resembling legionnaires disease, seek help from a local physician.
nepalpress | Everything you need to know about Nepali youths' entry into Russian forces,

Posted by: sln2002 | Jun 27 2023 16:54 utc | 45

I think the western media reacted quickly to the dangerous threat with the right counter measure.
If western readers had found out that even actual coups are reported at face value in real time in Russian media, the cognitive dissonance might have crushed the West totally.

Posted by: Michael Droy | Jun 27 2023 16:54 utc | 46

The basis for propaganda is the illusion of truth effect.

Our brain uses heuristics to assess an unknown situation. We dont think conciously about events all the time, because our brain would be overloaded. Key for our brain to understand events is simple repetitions, because repeptition makes the processing of events easier (processing fluency), they become familiar. And this familiarity then makes the brain recognize the fact as true.

So it goes like: Unknown fact -> repeptition -> familiarity -> true fact.

Interestingly, this even works, when we know that a fact is untrue, repetition is such a strong mechanism, that it can override previous knowledge. In this way, even the propagandists become vicitms of their own propaganda.

More on this research here: https://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/features/xge-0000098.pdf

Posted by: Arne Hartmann | Jun 27 2023 16:58 utc | 47

That is the weakness that has been exposed -- a vassal turned populist is shown to be a regime killer vector. That is a chink in the armour.

3, Putin physically looked ashen and for the first time diminished. This event appears to have shaken Putin himself. This is a subjective reading and you are free to disagree, but there is defeat in his eyes now. I actually felt sad for him.

Posted by: yesbored | Jun 27 2023 16:07 utc | 14

Yes, yes. Chimp in the armor, regime killer vector etc. "A game changer" for sure. A populist that zero people supported? More like everyone was stunned in place for a second, wondering what on earth is this saggy, needy jew doing now?

As for looking like a diminished chord, sure. Ashen? Ash wood is so strong that it's even been used for airplane propellers. Now go away, back to hell aviv with your aktchual fake sadness.

Posted by: Mike | Jun 27 2023 17:00 utc | 48

"there is defeat in his (Putin's) eyes now"

I have been watching Putin for body language right from the start. He was at his most pessimistic right at the start of the SMO. Going by mood, the whole thing is going better than expected, and apparently Prigozhim's revolt wasn't that big a downer for him.

Posted by: Jmaas | Jun 27 2023 17:00 utc | 49

All the discussion centers on Prigozhin. What was the role of the military commanders that actually run Wagner PMC? I have heard it suggested that only one of these people was actually in on the revolt. Putin specifically didn't identify specific names but used the plural "traitors".

Posted by: the pessimist | Jun 27 2023 17:05 utc | 50

President V. Putin is stronger than ever and in total control.

Foreign Minister S. Lavrov that this will end when no more Ukrainian army or NATO weaponry in the place formerly known as Ukraine.

Source: Alister Crooke - today

U.S. or NATO Changed Strategy since the Russian Rebellion? w/Alastair Crooke

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bzMKF2F_5S8 [23 mins]

Posted by: Don Firineach | Jun 27 2023 17:09 utc | 51

"Part of the key of discernment is knowing who does and who does not have certain truths."
Posted by: young | Jun 27 2023 16:34 utc | 33

In principle I reject all argument by authority. In principle, truth comes from reasoning from agreed facts and has nothing to do with the messenger. Of course in practice life is too short...

Posted by: Tim | Jun 27 2023 17:10 utc | 52

I think there is interesting contrast:
- How Russia handle armed insurrection by 4,000 armed military.
- How US handled "insurrection" by a few thousand middle-aged conservatives (mixed with FBI operatives) - these people and their families, lost jobs, were threatened by the government, had homes searched, some remain in jail awiting outcome of "trial".
So, which is the authoritarian government.

Further to the subject (US, voodoo doll / press secretary, spins the situation):
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-12195635/Karine-Jean-Pierre-slams-Fox-News-wannabe-dictator-chryon.html

Posted by: jared | Jun 27 2023 17:13 utc | 53

A lot of emotion from the barflies today, but what is not examined are Blinky’s motivations. My sense he’s trying to undermine the upcoming BRICS meeting. From what I’ve read the West is attempting to corral the BRICS leaders in an attempt to undermine August’s meeting.

The big ego extravaganza in DC for Modi is part of this. That and the reported “trouble” in Kazakhstan and new press restrictions from the US Congress are part of the conflict.

As my brother pointed out to me, we are not endangered by world war, but already in it. It’s just unlike anything else we’ve experienced before.

My only point is that what would it take for the Western elites to figure out that our chances of survival are decreased with this silly battle for the deck chairs on this sinking ship.

Posted by: Michael.j | Jun 27 2023 17:14 utc | 54

Putin specifically didn't identify specific names but used the plural "traitors".
the pessimist | Jun 27 2023 17:05 utc | 51

Things weren't settled that much when he made the first announcement, so he stayed vague to avoid limiting his options. The currently available information doesn't support Prigozhin getting much support except for the go along folks in the Wagner organization.

Posted by: Jmaas | Jun 27 2023 17:15 utc | 55

Every story about the "coup" has elements of truth and only time will confirm the true and whole story.
Using the swinging dick analogy, guys like Prig, eventually get called out. Often at the beer table in a bar. Stack up a column of coins in the center of the table and tell big-swinging dick Priggy to knock them off with his member.
Either Priggy couldn't swing his average dick, the usual bluff, or he decided to keep "Mr. Happy" tucked in his pants once he figured out the bar was full of guys with knives and guns.

Posted by: kupkee | Jun 27 2023 17:16 utc | 56

Perhaps we don't have to worry about the CIA/State's talent for propagandizing -- they may be talking to themselves within a small circle of listeners and followers. I think it bodes well that most Americans get their news from the Internet. Yes, it is censor, but at least in the US, there are simple work-arounds. Mostly they push certain narratives and one-liners -- "unprovoked war" -- which get picked up and go viral by less savvy sorts.

Sites like this are like little oases of debate. No viewpoint prevails here except, of course, the presupposition that we're not getting the "truth," however defined, from standard sources. If there's an attitude here, it's something like free-wheeling cynicism, which frankly, I love.

I'm concerned about censorship far more than propaganda: turning off sites because they don't like ideological competition seems easier than trying to combat other viewpoints within the framework of the First Amendment free speech protection. The government is very afraid of competitive voices. This is clear. I don't think they're at all sure they can win in an atmosphere of free debate. It's been a long time since this existed anyway, but at least we still have a semblance of free speech.

This may be comforting: "As of 27 Jun 2023, close to 7.7 million US adults still regularly read newspapers, with only 3% citing print newspapers as their primary source of information."

Only 7.7 million out of 340 million read a paper! What are we worried about, folks??? That's a hair more than two-percent.

Posted by: KR | Jun 27 2023 17:17 utc | 57

Bring on Kamala
Posted by: Paul Greenwood | Jun 27 2023 16:51 utc | 44

Too late! Kamala?! has already accepted an engagement with one of her ancestral homes and will be unavailable to audition for a NEW! opportunity until Jan 2025.

Mister Speaker,

The foundation of America was inspired by the vision of a nation of equal people. Throughout your history, you have embraced people from around the world. And, you have made them equal partners in the American dream. There are millions here, who have roots in India. Some of them sit proudly in this chamber.

MODI! MODI! MODI!
There is one behind me, who has made history! I am told that the Samosa Caucus is now the flavour of the House. I hope it grows and brings the full diversity of Indian cuisine here. Over two centuries [?], we have inspired each other through the lives of great Americans and Indians. We pay tribute to Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Junior. We also remember many others who worked for liberty, equality, and justice. Today, I also wish to pay a heartfelt tribute to one of them – Congressman John Lewis.
Zelensk*, 16 March 2022:
'I have a dream.' These words are known to each of you today. I can say I have a need. I need to protect our sky. I need your decision, your help, which means exactly the same. The same you feel when you hear the words, 'I have a dream.'
I have a dream. etc etc Never again. etc etc

Posted by: sln2002 | Jun 27 2023 17:17 utc | 58

I checked government and mainstream media in Sweden, and true enough they say the events of late show that Putin is weak.

But I fail to see the relevance of the P thang; they say that every day, regardless of what does or doesn’t happen in Russia or anywhere else.

Posted by: Jörgen Hassler | Jun 27 2023 17:20 utc | 59

i think the US had its hand up Prigozhin's butt. the Russian government didn't want or need the distraction, Prigozhin has been farmed out to Belarus while serious people carry on with the war.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Jun 27 2023 17:21 utc | 60

There was no "coup."

There was a planned coup, which almost certainly Prigozhin played along with as part of a Russian ploy to bait the US into a stupid mistake.

Which is exactly what happened.

Russia has not suffered any kind of debilitation as a result of this so-called "coup". In point of fact, Russia has emerged from this so-called "coup" stronger and more staunchly dismissive of F/uk/US/&NATO than it has ever been before.

Posted by: Pacifica Advocate | Jun 27 2023 17:21 utc | 61

@58 Did Modi also add "Thank you for all the standing ovations. I will be severing ties with BRICS as soon as I get home." or did I miss that part?

Posted by: dh | Jun 27 2023 17:29 utc | 62

There is definitely something to the notion that the weekend’s events were known and anticipated by the western powers. Germany’s sudden announcement to station troops in the Baltics based on presumed turmoil or destabilization in Russia surely wasn’t an instantaneous decision, and was announced after the ‘turmoil” had been resolved. Also, MOA comment sections were flooded with “fleas” through the weekend - a spike which has been seen before and could be understood as part of a coordinated information “op”.

NATO doesn’t really have a lot of options. Direct conflict with Russia would carry massive risk. Ukraine is now essentially an expensive liability. Perhaps the German announcement is anticipating a fallback to a new “iron curtain” strung along NATO’s eastern borders with Ukraine relegated to a lost cause.

Posted by: jayc | Jun 27 2023 17:39 utc | 63

This was all a plan by Russia. They got to place a new army in Belarus without objection and with no accountabilty.

Posted by: Figleaf23 | Jun 27 2023 17:40 utc | 64

As a patriotic American, I would find it tremendously entertaining to watch Lavrov bend Blinken over a log and make him sequel like a piggy until he hears dueling banjos in his head.

Reference to the American movie DELIVERANCE.

Posted by: Elmer Fudd | Jun 27 2023 17:42 utc | 65

The eight columnists at the Washington Post all reached similar conclusions about the Prigozhin fiasco because they really had no choice in the matter. There is no room on the WaPo editorial board for anyone with a view that really diverges from DC Beltway group-think, if that person wants to remain employed by WaPo. That's just business as usual, but it always does give a hint as to the view the US administration wants to advertise. I read WaPo as a barometer of the political weather. As for the administration hacks on the Sunday morning shows, I think it is all about damage control and spinning the facts to look more favorable to the standard US line of, "Putin is horrible and everybody hates him, especially in Russia".

It especially tickles me that the Blinken/Nuland/Sullivan gang assert that Putin must be very weak because he did not slaughter the mutineers. As if all conflicts must be settled through violence. Well, maybe they've been watching too many Hollywood dramas and forgot that violence creates more violence. Civilized people look for nonviolent solutions.

Posted by: Clever Dog | Jun 27 2023 17:47 utc | 66

Massive projection. If their are any cracks in a facade, they are visible every time Biden appears in public. And who’s the guy who is canceling the next election if his country is still at war with Russia at election time? That’s not a crack, it’s a yawning chasm.

Posted by: Thirdtwin | Jun 27 2023 17:47 utc | 67

Salaam to all at the bar.VVP really showed the world the art of defeating the enemy without firing a shot.How could that be seen as weakness! Sun Tzu,must be smiling,what a great student and leader,this Putin is.

Posted by: Q8 | Jun 27 2023 17:55 utc | 68

This bears a question. If eight columnists at one paper come to the very same (but false) conclusion, just issued in different words, why hire and pay all eight of them? Clearly, one would suffice.

Why hire even one? As a matter of fact, why have so many mainstream "news" agencies when they all peddle the same garbage? Just outsource it to ChatGPT. It's far more eloquent than these columnists anyway.

Posted by: FieryButMostPeaceful | Jun 27 2023 17:58 utc | 69

From RT:

"Civil servants who opted to get out of Russia during the failed revolt by the Wagner private military company (PMC) have betrayed their country and should be held accountable, Russian State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin has said.

“We all condemn those who left the country in this difficult moment,” Volodin said during a parliament session on Tuesday.

What those individuals did was a “betrayal,” he argued, adding that it especially concerned those employed by the Russian state.

“We need to find out if some of the civil servants took such a step, committed an unseemly act” because in this case working for the state isn’t for them, the speaker argued."

Posted by: the pessimist | Jun 27 2023 18:04 utc | 70

Looks like you got sucked in and missed the real story, because "internal" is being used exactly like "unprovoked" was:


"Don't get sucked in by the obviously false US narrative about weakening Putin et al.

The real tell is Blinken's use of the word (twice!) "internal". Expect to hear that word over and over.

It serves the same propaganda purpose as the word "unprovoked". Similarly, NYT reported that US spooks were "surprised" that there was no bloodshed. These guys can't help themselves - it's all projection all the time.

Get it? The real story is US and MI6 role in attempted coup. This was Bay of Pigs 2.0

Posted by: bill wolfe | Jun 26 2023 18:03 utc | 120

Posted by: bill wolfe | Jun 27 2023 18:05 utc | 71

The "weakened Putin" (false) narrative is the obvious and easy superficial story. Kind of like "Nordstream hurts Russian economy" or "dam break hurts Russian military posture".

I thought barflies drilled deeper - like "who done it"? And why is Biden openly saying "US had no role"? Why is Blinken emphasizing "internal" Russian affairs?

That's the rhetoric that needs to be unpacked.

Posted by: bill wolfe | Jun 27 2023 18:10 utc | 72

Why hire even one? As a matter of fact, why have so many mainstream "news" agencies when they all peddle the same garbage? Just outsource it to ChatGPT. It's far more eloquent than these columnists anyway.

Posted by: FieryButMostPeaceful | Jun 27 2023 17:58 utc | 69

Better writing for sure. Cut out the middle persons, the internets are hungry for content, release the AIs.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jun 27 2023 18:10 utc | 73

Tucker Carlson used to show this on his show all the time - how the U.S. media and government officials use the same scripted talking points expressed in almost verbatim the same language. On his show, Tucker would show the clips in rapid succession back to back. Very scripted.

Posted by: BB | Jun 27 2023 18:10 utc | 74

Homogenous hegemony partly reveals how America and the West subjectivize their citizens.

Posted by: w | Jun 27 2023 18:17 utc | 75

After internalizing Lukashenko's,Putin's,Prigozhin's comments/remarks after the end of the rebellion,a sallow aftertaste remains.
None of the three is capable of self-criticism (Lukashenko, at least to some extent).
Finally, Karlo is beginning to doubt Putin.
The man is not pulling the strings.
When I read the comments of ordinary Russians on Putin's statements, I see questions like: Where are 1.5 million uniforms (as an example), and Putin's honest answer to this question alone should have cost Shoigu his head...
I have visited Russia only as a vacation destination and I have already noticed that as a German I do not understand the Russian mentality, which continues at the moment.
Lukashenko and Prigozhin have something in common: honesty.

Wer gab den Befehl,Prigozhins Leute aus der Luft anzugreifen?
Der sollte heute zurück treten!

Posted by: Oberbayer | Jun 27 2023 18:18 utc | 76

Don Firineach | Jun 27 2023 17:09 utc | 51--

Thanks very much, Don!!

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 27 2023 18:19 utc | 77

Actually, who'd listen to Blinken, or Biden , or any nutcase from America...about Putin?

Posted by: ostro | Jun 27 2023 18:20 utc | 78

For three long years the MSM carried water for Joseph Robinette Biden as he insisted that Hunter Biden was a good kid, who committed no crimes, and that he, Joseph Robinette Biden, had never discussed Hunter Biden's deals with him, or met with any of his business associates.

The MSM is now in the process, like Jack and Jill, of no longer carrying water for Biden, and are tumbling down to to the point where they refuse to be rebuffed by his press secretary when they press on questions about Joe and Hunter Biden.

Joe Biden's narrative is no longer operable. And we are now seeing the arc of the administration's Ukraine narrative, which started a few years after the Hunter Biden one, start to show a remarkably similar path.

Zelenskyy, like Hunter and Joe Biden, can't hide his real stripes any longer, and he's becoming more widely known as a fascist backed dictator who is fighting a losing war, and his military's method of conscription and deployment is nothing short of a humanitarian disaster, one bordering on being a war crime.

For their part, Putin and the Russian MOD are serving a role analogous to the one of the whistleblowers, and Congressional Committees, that are exposing the fraudulent nature of the Biden administration. As the war has progressed we more and more see the lies of the West regarding Russia, and the corruption and true history behind the Western backed regime in Kiev.

The frauds and bad faith actors try to razzle dazzle the public with elaborate spectacles, but they always fizzle out, leaving them looking more pathetic than ever. Much like the investigations coming from the House are doing to the Biden administration's false narratives, Russia is grinding down Ukraine's military. Just as there are dramatic flourishes as those investigations unfold, Russia's military provides bombshell moments.

Imo the pace of the war in Ukraine has caught up to the pace of the exposes of the Biden administration, and going forward they are going to be seen as in some ways tied at the hip. The Zelenskyy regime is going down, and it will take down the Biden administration with it. The Biden administration is going down, and it will take down the Zelenskyy regime with it. eom

Posted by: Babel-17 | Jun 27 2023 18:25 utc | 79

Declare victory and go home, Anthony. Mission accomplished! If only.

Speaking of hot/not re weakness vs. strength: what says strength like numbing uniformity of parroted opinion?! People used to joke about Soviet censorship and the paranoid conformity of apparatchiks. Move over, fellas. The oped section of the Washington Post now owns that turf, its only competition, oh, every other media org's punditry profit center. I'd expect to see deeply discounted job lots of intellectual honesty on Bezos's home-shopping network were it not that media opinionators have only trace amounts to begin with as a condition of employment. They exist less for informed encounters with inconvenient facts than for cover, what the wordsmith George W. Bush memorably referred to as catapulting the propaganda. Not that that's news.

Posted by: dingusansich | Jun 27 2023 18:25 utc | 80

Oberbayer | Jun 27 2023 18:18 utc | 76--

It's not Putin that I doubt. What I find troubling is the amount of Neoliberalism that continues to be practiced within Russia. See my reply to S on the Prigozhin thread. However, I do see the amount of solidarity within Russia and elsewhere as something absolutely absent within the Outlaw US Empire.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 27 2023 18:25 utc | 81

Enough of the coup. What really happened will leak out or be hinted at by other events.

What happens now ? In some strange way, Ukraine still appears to hold the initiative. Now they are pushing the focus onto ZNPP. Again, the Russian plan seems to be wait and see what Ukraine does and then react. Thus far that seems to work for them in the war of attrition.

But at some point, the attrition battle ends and you have to take the initiative to impose your will on the enemy. How patient will the Russian people be ? Russia seems to be suffering 1000-2000 casualties per month. In some sense that is sustainable for a long while, but lets not pretend it is not painful as the months and years roll by for a nation of 140 million suffering severe demographic decline.

Personally, I don't see how Russia contemplates "winning" without ultimately also planning to confront Nato in a conventional fight and win. Perhaps in view of that, the strategy in Ukraine makes even more sense as a means of attriting Europe, extending the conflict in time allowing Russia to continue to mobilize and prepare.

Or perhaps neither side has a plan ?

Posted by: danf51 | Jun 27 2023 18:35 utc | 82

This solidifies a statement I made a couple of threads back:

The entire Western MSM is a fully integrated component of the US Military.

It is only nominally a civilian entity and functions literally as the information war division and is mobilised to support every single kinetic operation taken by the US military (including NATO).

The Western MSM is a Weapon of Mass Destruction.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jun 27 2023 18:47 utc | 83

Great analysis. I saw b's prediction of twelve hours on Saturday morning in southern Arizona. My friend reported it to me breathlessly from the New York Post website. I naturally dialed up MOA. As we know now, it took eight hours, not twelve. The story line is ubiquitous at media outlets save a precious few like this one. This is what they have all been waiting for, like Godot maybe. It's Havel looking back at himself. It's also a distraction from the offensive to nowhere. And a distraction from the many failures of the Biden regime. I don't know where it goes from here. This troubling war is following the script from Viet Nam, Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere. Every time the USA loses, it escalates.

Posted by: Cowboy #1 | Jun 27 2023 18:51 utc | 84

Oberbayer 76
Where are 1.5 million uniforms (as an example), and Putin's honest answer to this question alone should have cost Shoigu his head...

I profess no special knowledge over what is going on in Russia, but some countries are set up with the expectation that a low level of corruption as ordinary and tolerated. The highest ranking people will be the most corrupt. The usual consideration is that it has to not be excessive. If you want to see a list of countries where open corruption it tolerated, do an internet search for Corruption Perceptions Index. I would say as a matter of speculation that the most corrupt 30 countries on the list all tolerate open corruption as an ordinary thing, and maybe a lot more than that.

Posted by: Jmaas | Jun 27 2023 18:56 utc | 85

"If eight columnists at one paper come to the very same (but false) conclusion, just issued in different words, why hire and pay all eight of them? Clearly, one would suffice."

Excellent point! But you need more than one columnist to make it look like a consensus - but you still don't need all that many. That's why the big "news" organizations have been radically reducing their investigative staffs etc., if you are just going to repeat government/corporate talking points you only need enough talking heads to make it look like a crowd, but you don't need anyone working behind them. Overall news staffs have been gutted the last few decades.

Here's a transcript of Stephen Colbert from the 2006 press corps talk (before he sold out, and was still funny)

"But, listen, let’s review the rules. Here’s how it works. The President makes decisions. He’s the decider. The press secretary announces those decisions, and you people of the press type those decisions down. Make, announce, type. Just put ’em through a spell check and go home. Get to know your family again. Make love to your wife. Write that novel you got kicking around in your head. You know, the one about the intrepid Washington reporter with the courage to stand up to the administration? You know, fiction!"

Posted by: TG | Jun 27 2023 19:04 utc | 86

Thierry Meyssan answers many questions.

https://www.voltairenet.org/article219564.html

Whenever I read his articles, I get the sense that he has deep ties to a foreign state intelligence agency.

Posted by: Turk 152 | Jun 27 2023 19:04 utc | 87

to Bob | Jun 27 2023 16:33 utc | 30 ....

Not to worry -- why bother about mere stuff like infrastructure, poverty, genuine education, decent food and medical care when the much more important and ever more fanatical LGBTQ+++ /agenda of NATO will be everywhere to save the USA and NATO vassal states ...
Heil Trans-twinkies!
... everywhere except in countries that resist the social, military and eonomic aggression of a depraved and increasingly psychopathic US-empire and its similarly unhinged big-corporate owners.
The war in Ukraine is not just between the USA (plus puppets) and Russia, it is basically between two entirely incompatible -- and still diverging -- versions of how the world ought to be.
There can be no compromise; only one side will win.
But which?

Posted by: Cynic | Jun 27 2023 19:10 utc | 88

@ Arch Bungle | Jun 27 2023 18:47 utc | 83

Spot on. Plus plus and all that.

I don't know how it is in other countries. For that matter, I don't even visit the eastern half of east bay area, where I live. (Thoreau said "I have traveled extensively in Concord.") But I generalize to my fellow US Americans, fairly or unfairly.

Aside from imperial wage slaves impressed into the dreaded Main Stream of media thought-control, I'm mainly worried about my friends, neighbors, and relatives. Ordinary US Americans have no palate for any other kind of infotainment. Just tell us who to hate: Arabs awhile back, Russians today, Chinese next. The cognitive deficit, on the part of our polity, cannot be repaired via education, because people will not hear what they don't want to hear. By and large, people don't want to think about it.

The deficit in ordinary US Americans is moral. We haven't the slightest trace of curiosity about genocides, past or present, necessary to sustain our exceptionalism. We name states and cities after legendary genocidaires. I can't imagine any way to turn around such an suicidally amoral polity. So it goes.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | Jun 27 2023 19:10 utc | 89

Nice ironical note there b: you're all allowed to be your authentic self so long as you all have the same beliefs. What a fucked up hypocritical managerial clown farm we live in.

Posted by: Patroklos | Jun 27 2023 19:15 utc | 90

Progozhin's tantrum was as much a "coup" as January 6th was an "insurrection."

Posted by: LastLaugh | Jun 27 2023 19:16 utc | 91

the-making-of-propaganda-putin-has-been-weakened-russia-is-crumbling

The old saying seems relevant here "Russia is never as strong as she looks; Russia is never as weak as she looks." Bismark said this, but the internet is saying that this quote comes from several people. Anyway, Russia is not strong but not weak either, Russia is just Russia. Which is why it is ridiculous that the West has decided to bait the Russian bear right in front of its cave, no good can come out of it.

Russia has, by just breathing on Ukraine, wiped out 2 or 3 NATO irregular armies already, and thats with a little amount of troops and apparently a lot of inefficiently and incompetence. Russia persists with its SloMO tactics because the West cannot, now and for the next 5 or even 10 years, match Russian in conventional warfare.

But the SloMO is causing dissatisfaction in Russia, some want a more proper sort of a response to Ukraine. And here is the problem, as many have said, Russia cannot be defeated conventionally by the West, so the biggest threat to Russia will come from internal sources. And what do you know, a mutiny of sorts was attempted recently, which could have spread into a coup. Yet Russia's National Guard, which reports directly to Putin and not the military, was created to handle just such internal events. Yet the National Guard was conspicuous by its absence in this Russian internal matter. Putin had better jack the National Guard up with armata tanks to handle internal squabbles in the future, and keep so 100'000 troops of the National Guard ready to rumble near Moscow at all times just in case.

Posted by: gT | Jun 27 2023 19:20 utc | 92

In fact, most of what was "agreed" was arranged in advance. Prigozhin's remaining Wagner will move to newly built bases in Belarus and maybe concentrate on business opportunities in Africa. The rest will sign agreements with the Russian MoD and join regular Russian forces.

I still believe that Prigozhin won. He humiliated Shoigu. This was a pissing contest, or more precisely, a contest on who has the longest dick. Prigozhin showed that his dick is 500 km long. Shoigu had nothing to show in response.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Jun 27 2023 15:45 utc | 1

Shoigu is a bhuddist.... Bhuddists do not engage in pissing contests....
Shoigu is Minister of Defense.... His job is logistics.... providing what the forces need... supervising mfg of weaps, ammo, fuel, chow...

Gerasimov is Chief of General Staff... he determines overall strategy... selects commanders...

Including theatre commanders like Suvrokin....

This altercation is but one of the many reasons I believe the whole affair was scripted...a STING... against whom we have yet to discern...

INDY

Posted by: Dr. George W Oprisko | Jun 27 2023 19:26 utc | 93

I thought Putin was already a weak leader. When did that change? A search on articles from last year (2022) certainly portrayed Putin as weak and incompetent. From last September 2022 Wapo:

A Weakened Putin Is No Use to Russia

While that can still change, perhaps more than once, it’s a good moment to consider whether the man who got Russia into this mess retains any legitimacy — domestically or internationally. To put it even more bluntly, who, if anyone, still needs a weak Vladimir Putin?

(no paywall)

Posted by: Erelis | Jun 27 2023 19:32 utc | 94

How do Europeans feel when the likes of Blinken brags about how "Russia" is weaning them off their energy supply?
I guess how Europeans feel doesn't matter to the neocons.

I love the line about the hypocrisy of the west and its "Diversity is Our Strength" mantra, that doesn't apply to thoughts and opinions, only tattoos, and gender and racial identities.

We Create Our Own Reality is the more telling slogan for the west, I think.

Posted by: wagelaborer | Jun 27 2023 19:33 utc | 95

Arne Hartmann | Jun 27 2023 16:58 utc | 47

Isn't that what happened to the chap who wrote the Mormon version of the Bible?
He knew it was fake ... followers all reckoned it wasn't ... which finally convinced him.

Posted by: Cynic | Jun 27 2023 19:35 utc | 96

jared | Jun 27 2023 17:13 utc | 53
*** (US, voodoo doll / press secretary, spins the situation):
Karine-Jean-Pierre-slams-Fox-News-wannabe-dictator-chryon.html***

Anyone know at what angle of tilt Dozy Doll's eyes open and close?

Posted by: Cynic | Jun 27 2023 19:43 utc | 97

I have already noticed that as a German I do not understand the Russian mentality, which continues at the moment.
Lukashenko and Prigozhin have something in common: honesty.

Wer gab den Befehl,Prigozhins Leute aus der Luft anzugreifen?
Der sollte heute zurück treten!

Posted by: Oberbayer | Jun 27 2023 18:18 utc | 76

1. "as a German I do not understand the Russian mentality" And after more than 100 years of fighting and undermining Russia, Germany has learned nothing.
2. Lukashenko and Prigozhin have something in common: honesty. As long as German "honesty" is pliable as an elastic band.

Posted by: kupkee | Jun 27 2023 19:47 utc | 98

Posted by: Erelis | Jun 27 2023 19:32 utc | 94

I can't even be bothered to read what Bezo's Blog says anymore. Same with NYT and The Atlantic. They've gone Full Retard since Russiagate.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Jun 27 2023 19:51 utc | 99

Elmer Fudd | Jun 27 2023 17:42 utc | 65
*** As a patriotic American, I would find it tremendously entertaining to watch Lavrov bend Blinken over a log and make him sequel like a piggy until he hears dueling banjos in his head.
Reference to the American movie DELIVERANCE.***

Also reminiscent of one of the really excellent "piggy and bear" animations on Telegram.

Posted by: Cynic | Jun 27 2023 19:56 utc | 100

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