Category Archives: Russia

Putin’s PR Quagmire

Europe, Foreign Policy, Russia, Terrorism

Opines Tom Piatak of Chronicles magazine:

Most Ukrainians do not want to be part of Russia’s “near abroad.” In this they resemble most Poles, Estonians, Latvians, Lithuanians, Finns, Czechs, Slovaks, and Hungarians. Those who experienced Russian rule, either under the tsars or the commissars, generally do not harbor any nostalgia for it. Instead, they fear its return. A post-Communist Russia does not pose any threat to us, and the United States should stay out of Russia’s dispute with Ukraine for that reason. But Russia does pose a potential threat to its neighbors, and giving support to rebels who shoot down airliners will do nothing to reassure those worried by a revival of Russian power. Putin’s task should be to allay the fears of Russia’s neighbors, not to stoke them.

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Silly Shrew

Feminism, Gender, Russia

How does a shameless shrew demonstrate how she feels (for she can’t think)? By baring her breasts while stabbing a statue of President Vladimir Putin in a Paris wax museum.

… A topless member of the radical protest group Femen used a metal chisel to stab and bash in the face of Putin’s statue in a famed Paris wax museum on Thursday.
The activist, who had ‘Kill Putin’ written on her bare chest, reportedly screamed “Putin is a dictator” while destroying the figure at the Grevin Wax Museum, French daily Le Parisien reported.
Police arrested the activist shortly after the attack, which happened near statues of US President Barack Obama and recently abdicated Spanish King Juan Carlos, both of which escaped without a scratch. …

Some comic relief from a fem who takes herself ever so seriously.


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Provenance Of Anti-Semitic Leaflets Still Unknown

Anti-Semitism, Europe, Russia

Despite what neoconservatives stateside are asserting, according to IsraeNet, “It is unclear who is responsible for [a] leaflet,” distributed in Donetsk, Ukraine, “calling for all Jews over 16 years old to register as Jews.” Naturally, neocons are blaming the Russians. Via IsraeNet:

The leaflet demanded the city’s Jews supply a detailed list of all the property they own, or else have their citizenship revoked, face deportion [sic] and see their assets confiscated. …
… The leaflet detailed what type of documents the Jewish citizens would need to supply: “ID and passport are required to register your Jewish religion, religious documents of family members, as well as documents establishing the rights to all real estate property that belongs to you, including vehicles.”
If the message was not made clear enough, the leaflet further stipulated the consequences that would come to those who failed to abide by the new demands: “Evasion of registration will result in citizenship revoke and you will be forced outside the country with a confiscation of property.”
To add insult to injury, the leaflet demanded the Jews pay a registration fee of $50.

Reports the New York Times:

The leaflets were supposedly signed by Denis Pushilin, the leader of the Donetsk People’s Republic, the newly declared and unrecognized state that claims to represent ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine. But that group and other pro-Russian groups quickly denied they had anything to do with them.
“This has nothing to do with us; it is a provocation,” said Alexander Maltsev, a spokesman for the People’s Republic, in a telephone interview. He said he did not know who was responsible, or their motives.
The city, the center of a coal-mining region in Ukraine, has since Saturday fallen largely under the control of pro-Russian militants who have justified their uprising as a response to what they call the fascism and anti-Semitism of the new central government in Kiev. So it was a surprise that the fliers, addressed to the “Jews of Donetsk,” claimed to have come from the headquarters of the Donetsk Republic.

Developing.


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‘Putin’s Libertarians’

Foreign Policy, libertarianism, Ron Paul, Russia, The State

The proper libertarian foreign policy, in my opinion, is without the slobbering sentimentality adopted by many libertarians toward the putative push for freedom across the Middle East and beyond. Whomever—and wherever—they are, I wish freedom fighters well, but they’re on their own. Americans have their own tyrants to tackle. We no longer want to defend to the death borders not our own. I’ve promised, moreover, that when liberty deprived peoples the world over support patriots stateside (such as the Hage and Bundy families), I’d return the courtesy. It’s safe to say, however, that the world’s statists do not care about American liberties.

Not all libertarians share my detachment. Via my friend Yuri Maltsev comes another perspective on Ukraine (to which I’ve not devoted a second thought since penning “Presstitute-Cultivated Ignorance On Ukraine”). Yuri himself has written the following:

I am glad that there is a growing opposition to Putin’s regime in Russia itself. The list of eminent Russian intellectuals against aggression in Ukraine is much longer than those confused libertarians who support “Russian national interests” (Mises and Hayek would detest such an expression). …
There is nothing libertarian in the neo-Stalinist Putin’s regime. Stalinism is an exact opposite of freedom. It is the same as to embrace Hitler just because he disliked FDR. Enemy of my enemy is not necessarily a friend . . . I think that socialists Timoshenko and Yushchenko [the Orange revolution politicians elected after mass protests in 2004] squandered Ukrainian prospects for freedom and prosperity and should be blamed for that, but the alternative (Putin-Yanukovich) proved to be way more disgusting.

Youri’s recommended analysis is “Putin’s Libertarians” by Roman Skaskiw. Excerpts:

… I have been horrified by the libertarian coverage of events in Ukraine. Much of it has been such an uncritical parroting of Kremlin propaganda, so devoid of journalistic integrity, and such a betrayal of libertarian principles, that I can’t decide whether the authors, many of whom I’ve long admired, suffer a bias toward contrarian narratives or are on the Kremlin payroll. …

Paul Craig Roberts attempted to de-legitimize Ukraine’s protests by praising the now-deposed Yanukovych regime and turning a blind eye to its barbarity. His praise includes the term “human-rights trained Ukrainian police”, this after the police had begun kidnapping injured protesters from hospitals. One such protester, Yuriy Verbytsky, a seismologist from the Geophysical Institute in Lviv and mountain climber was injured in the protests, hospitalized, kidnapped from the hospital, severely beaten, and left in the woods where he froze to death. “Human-rights-trained” police do not strip and humiliate captured protesters in -10 C degree weather.

The corruption and savagery of Ukraine’s police is neither secret nor new. Last summer, police stepped aside during a violent raid against the business interests of opposition politician. The business manager was later assassinated. This sort of corporate raiding has been fairly common, though most victims quietly give up their businesses without a fight. There was also this story of policemen connected to the Party of Regions raping a young woman and going free until a rioters sacked the police station, it was a tragic repeat of a brutal rape-murder that happened the year before, also by politically connected persons who were also released by Ukraine’s “human rights trained” police.

It’s one thing to oppose intervention. I’ve done so myself. It’s another to mischaracterize the barbarity of the Yanukovych regime in an attempt to discredit the uprising against it.

Daniel McAdams, executive director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace has made the libertarian circuit — lewrockwell.com, the Tom Woods Show, the Scott Horton Show, and of course, RT. He makes a number of ridiculous claims, including the argument that the Russian military already had free reign in Crimea: “How can you annex and invade a territory in which you are already legally present?”

I really don’t know what to make of this. Can anyone help me? I find it equally unlikely that he is this disconnected from reality or that he is deliberately spreading disinformation. Are there other explanations? …

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Where’s America’s Right To Referendum, Secession?

Federalism, Foreign Policy, Liberty, Military, Multiculturalism, Neoconservatism, Political Correctness, Russia

“Where’s America’s Right To Referendum, Secession?” is the current column, now on WND. An excerpt:

From a node in the neoconservative network, a Fox News studio, Charles Krauthammer has complained about the eviction of the Ukrainian Navy from the city of Sevastopol, where it was headquartered. Not a word did the commentator say about the city’s location: Sevastopol is on the Crimean Peninsula. It would appear that the city now falls within Crimean jurisdiction—starting on March 16, the day the people of Crimea voted to secede from Ukraine.

By most estimates, between 97 and 93 percent of Crimean voters said yes to a reunion with Russia. High too was voter turnout. McClatchy pegs it at 83 percent of registered voters in Crimea. BBC News was agreed, also reporting a ballot of ‘more than 80 percent.’ Zerohedge.com counted a ‘paltry’ 73 percent turnout, still ‘higher than every U.S. presidential election since 1900.’

As rocker Ted Nugent might say, the Russians and Crimeans are blood brothers. Nugent got into trouble for using this perfectly proper appellation to describe his affinity for a politician, of all people: Texas Republican gubernatorial hopeful Greg Abbott. Notwithstanding that in the land of the terminally stupid, linguistic flourish can land one in hot water—blood brother is a good, if colorful, turn of phrase that denotes fealty between like-minded people. Steeped in state-enforced multiculturalism, America’s deracinated, self-anointed cognoscenti have a hard time grasping the blood-brother connections between the people of Russia and Crimea.

For no apparent reason other than that it is pro-Russian, Americans have reflexively aligned themselves against the swell for secession in southern Ukraine. Separatist referenda in Kosovo, Catalonia, South Sudan and Scotland have been accepted without demur by a political and media establishment unprepared to countenance a similar referendum in Crimea. …”

Read on. The complete column is “Where’s America’s Right To Referendum, Secession?” now on WND.

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American Patriot Explains A Russian Patriot

Media, Neoconservatism, Paleoconservatism, Politics, Russia

No wonder the brilliant Pat Buchanan is nowhere to be seen on cable news channels imparting his considerable knowledge of history and geopolitics to American media ignoramuses. Much like Henry Kissinger’s well-informed, balanced analysis on Ukraine and Russia, smuggled into the Washington Post over the ignorant din made by the likes of Chucky Krauthammer—Buchanan understands and knows stuff. That makes those egos in the anchor’s chair look even more idiotic.

Writes Buchanan in “Is Putin the irrational one?”:

… if Putin is not a Russian imperialist out to re-establish Russian rule over non-Russian peoples, who and what is he?

In the estimation of this writer, Vladimir Putin is a blood-and-soil, altar-and-throne ethnonationalist who sees himself as Protector of Russia and looks on Russians abroad the way Israelis look upon Jews abroad, as people whose security is his legitimate concern.

Consider the world Putin saw, from his vantage point, when he took power after the Boris Yeltsin decade.

He saw a Mother Russia that had been looted by oligarchs abetted by Western crony capitalists, including Americans. He saw millions of ethnic Russians left behind, stranded, from the Baltic states to Kazakhstan.

He saw a United States that had deceived Russia with its pledge not to move NATO into Eastern Europe if the Red Army would move out, and then exploited Russia’s withdrawal to bring NATO onto her front porch.

Had the neocons gotten their way, not only the Warsaw Pact nations of Central and Eastern Europe, but five of 15 republics of the USSR, including Ukraine and Georgia, would have been brought into a NATO alliance created to contain and, if need be, fight Russia.

What benefits have we derived from having Estonia and Latvia as NATO allies that justify losing Russia as the friend and partner Ronald Reagan had made by the end of the Cold War?

We lost Russia, but got Romania as an ally? Who is irrational here? …

… If the people of Eastern Ukraine wish to formalize their historic, cultural and ethnic ties to Russia, and the people of Western Ukraine wish to sever all ties to Moscow and join the European Union, why not settle this politically, diplomatically and democratically, at a ballot box? …

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