Posts Tagged ‘Russia’

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by William Blum

 

The mind of the mass media: Email exchange between myself and a leading Washington Post foreign policy reporter:

July 18, 2018

Dear Mr. Birnbaum,

You write Trump “made no mention of Russia’s adventures in Ukraine”. Well, neither he nor Putin nor you made any mention of America’s adventures in the Ukraine, which resulted in the overthrow of the Ukrainian government in 2014, which led to the justified Russian adventure. Therefore …?

If Russia overthrew the Mexican government would you blame the US for taking some action in Mexico?

William Blum

Dear Mr. Blum,

Thanks for your note. “America’s adventures in the Ukraine”: what are you talking about? Last time I checked, it was Ukrainians in the streets of Kiev who caused Yanukovych to turn tail and run. Whether or not that was a good thing, we can leave aside, but it wasn’t the Americans who did it.

It is, however, Russian special forces who fanned out across Crimea in February and March 2014, according to Putin, and Russians who came down from Moscow who stoked conflict in eastern Ukraine in the months after, according to their own accounts.

Best, Michael Birnbaum

To MB,

I can scarcely believe your reply. Do you read nothing but the Post? Do you not know of high State Dept official Victoria Nuland and the US Ambassador in Ukraine in Maidan Square to encourage the protesters? She spoke of 5 billion (sic) dollars given to aid the protesters who were soon to overthrow the govt. She and the US Amb. spoke openly of who to choose as the next president. And he’s the one who became president. This is all on tape. I guess you never watch Russia Today (RT). God forbid! I read the Post every day. You should watch RT once in a while.

William Blum

To WB,

I was the Moscow bureau chief of the newspaper; I reported extensively in Ukraine in the months and years following the protests. My observations are not based on reading. RT is not a credible news outlet, but I certainly do read far beyond our own pages, and of course I talk to the actual actors on the ground myself – that’s my job.

And: yes, of course Nuland was in the Maidan – but encouraging the protests, as she clearly did, is not the same as sparking them or directing them, nor is playing favorites with potential successors, as she clearly did, the same as being directly responsible for overthrowing the government. I’m not saying the United States wasn’t involved in trying to shape events. So were Russia and the European Union. But Ukrainians were in the driver’s seat the whole way through. I know the guy who posted the first Facebook call to protest Yanukovych in November 2013; he’s not an American agent. RT, meanwhile, reports fabrications and terrible falsehoods all the time. By all means consume a healthy and varied media diet – don’t stop at the US mainstream media. But ask yourself how often RT reports critically on the Russian government, and consider how that lacuna shapes the rest of their reporting. You will find plenty of reporting in the Washington Post that is critical of the US government and US foreign policy in general, and decisions in Ukraine and the Ukrainian government in specific. Our aim is to be fair, without picking sides.

Best, Michael Birnbaum

======================= end of exchange =======================

Right, the United States doesn’t play indispensable roles in changes of foreign governments; never has, never will; even when they offer billions of dollars; even when they pick the new president, which, apparently, is not the same as picking sides. It should be noticed that Mr Birnbaum offers not a single example to back up his extremist claim that RT “reports fabrications and terrible falsehoods all the time.” “All the time”, no less! That should make it easy to give some examples.

For the record, I think RT is much less biased than the Post on international affairs. And, yes, it’s bias, not “fake news” that’s the main problem – Cold-War/anti-Communist/anti-Russian bias that Americans have been raised with for a full century. RT defends Russia against the countless mindless attacks from the West. Who else is there to do that? Should not the Western media be held accountable for what they broadcast? Americans are so unaccustomed to hearing the Russian side defended, or hearing it at all, that when they do it can seem rather weird.

To the casual observer, THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA indictments of July 14 of Russian intelligence agents (GRU) reinforced the argument that the Soviet government interfered in the US 2016 presidential election. Regard these indictments in proper perspective and we find that election interference is only listed as a supposed objective, with charges actually being for unlawful cyber operations, identity theft, and conspiracy to launder money by American individuals unconnected to the Russian government. So … we’re still waiting for some evidence of actual Russian interference in the election aimed at determining the winner.

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Anti-Putin protests in Brisbane, Australia

 

Link removed by request of the filmmakers.

See:

A Blacklisted Film and the New Cold War

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Here’s the real reason the US must talk to Russia

bmh2

UPDATE:

PolitiFact:

Putin may have meant $400,000, which is relatively close to the amount found by Politifact. Huge error.

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NY Times today goes on an incredible journey, providing zero evidence, but lots of claims. Some of it may be true. The Guccifer 2 entity may have been a Russian intelligence operation, connected to the indictments of 12 people by Mueller this week. See what you think, and try and hack your way through all the anti-Russian, anti-Putin propaganda they just had to throw in there as standard (mind control) practice.

Tracing Guccifer 2.0’s Many Tentacles in the 2016 Election

PS.

They even go to lengths to dismiss the “murdered DNC staffer” by not even giving him a name, which was Seth Rich. Assange mentioned Rich as a possible source for the documents, but this has been attacked as a “conspiracy theory” and unthinkable ever since. Rich was murdered in a “robbery” according to the official story… where absolutely nothing was actually stolen.

 

 

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The Western-made weapons surrendered by armed groups in Deraa are “material evidence of gross interference” in Syria, according to Russian Foreign ministry. The Syrian province was under militant control for years.
“Enormous number of Western-produced modern weapons and equipment was handed over by reconciled militants to the Syrian army,” spokesperson Maria Zakharova said, during her weekly news briefing on Thursday. “Different antitank missile systems, armored vehicles and small arms represent material evidence of gross interference in Syria.”

 

Stockpiles of surrendered Western arms in Syria a sign of ‘gross interference’ – Russia

 

PS

Russian doc on mopping up the rest of the terrorist-controlled areas:

 

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Yesterday, a number of Western presstitutes attacked Russia for the killing of a journalist in Ukraine.

Only, he ain’t dead.

Propaganda Killing Kills Propaganda — First The Skripals, Now Arkady Babchenko Come Back From The Dead

 

An “enemy of Putin” is attacked. Authorities immediately raise accusations against Russia and the Kremlin. Public condemnation follows. There are calls to sanction Russia.

This will not go down well for Babchenko or the Ukraine. The Ukrainian Prime Minister officially accused Russia of killing the man. But it turns out the the Ukrainian state faked the murder.