Will the Last Person in Lithuania Please Turn Out the Lights?

Wink
Uncle Volodya says, “You’d be surprised what people will accept once you insist two or three times running that they have seen what you tell them they have seen.”

Hey, great news! The Baltic states vow to break away from the Russian power grid by 2025, and hook themselves into the European Union electricity system, breaking the last of a ‘Soviet legacy’. I can’t help thinking that will leave them with one less thing to bitch about, but I suppose they see it as a fair exchange. Before we go further, I’ve selected Lithuania, in the title, as exemplary of the Baltic states; Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. That was mostly for the alliterative lilt offered by “Last”, “Lithuania” and “Lights”, and while Latvia would have worked just as well there, Lithuania’s portly president – Dalia Grybauskaite, who has sometimes been described as quite a bit like Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko in a dress – is so reliably vocal in her hatred and disdain for all things Russian that she sort of volunteers her country.

“This is the last millstone tied to our feet, keeping us from real energy independence,” she trumpeted triumphantly to local station LRT. “That tool of blackmail, which was used (by Russia) to buy our politicians and meddle in our politics, will no longer exist.”

The last millstone tied to her dainty pink feet, the last obstacle which prevents Lithuania – and the Baltic brothers – from real energy independence! Think of that. Cause for celebration, surely? Well, except – forgive me for being a stickler for accuracy – unless the Baltics mean to generate their own power in amounts sufficient unto their consumption (and they don’t), they are actually exchanging one dependency for another. Are they making a good deal? Let’s look.

You’ll have to bear with me here, because as I have found is usual in researching utility consumption in Europe as a basis for comparison, they give you a straight answer about as frequently as you stumble upon an apparently-abandoned fifty-dollar note (or its local monetary equivalent) in the street. I found before, when trying to establish European natural-gas  consumption for the purpose of establishing how much LNG the USA would have to deliver by tanker to meet its needs, that I had to convert units of measure and costs back and forth so many times I almost forgot what it was I was trying to prove.

Anyway, let’s try to establish some benchmarks for further reference. What we think we know, according to information available from the intertubes, is that (1) Lithuanians currently pay about 145.08 per month for all their utilities; Electricity, Heating, Cooling, Water, Garbage, for an average apartment. (2) Electricity prices in the European Union, while they vary widely from country to country, are steadily going up even as average consumption decreases, and (3) are more than double rates in the United States. (4) The climatic average for the Baltic states most closely matches that of the New England states of the USA, and (5) the average monthly cost of electricity for the New England states is $115.93. That’s €100.12 at today’s exchange rate. But European electricity rates were more than twice those in the USA, remember – so that’s around €200.24 per month. Just for electricity. Garbage and other utility costs, extra. Another fact we gleaned from our intertube prowling is that Lithuania’s electricity consumption rose among the fastest of member states between 2005 and 2015 – 23% – even as its domestic contribution to energy generation dropped dramatically due to the decommissioning of its only nuclear plant; it dropped by 65.6%.

File:Electricity consumption by households, 2015 (2005 = 100) YB17.png

So, there’s a useful political tip for Lithuanians, and probably for everybody – when the boss starts rhapsodizing about overcoming the last obstacle to true energy independence, get your wallet out and get ready to pay more in energy costs. Independence isn’t cheap, you know. Meanwhile, Lithuania – and its Baltic companions – is getting ready to plug into the European power grid under conditions in which it more than halved its own production and increased its consumption by nearly a quarter. Sounds like a good deal, what? Well, for somebody.

I hate to bring it up, but a kick in the pants in the form of higher utility bills is not the only thing the Baltics will have to think about when they hot-wire themselves to the great beating heart of Europe. They’ll have to consider, also, reliability of generated power. Europe is big on the expansion of ‘renewables’ in its power shopping basket; wind and solar power generation. That’s all very well for their green image, and to be truthful we should all aspire to more usage of non-hydrocarbon-based energy to help keep global warming down and just generally be more responsible consumers. But the hard facts are that renewables are not especially reliable, and there are still some storage issues to sort out before they achieve anything like the dependability of gas or nuclear power, both of which are quite clean energy, relatively speaking.

In Spring of last year, the entire center of Brussels blacked out, due to ‘an electric network distribution problem’. As official explanations go, they don’t come too much vaguer than that. But France’s energy transition policy calls for a 190% increase in the use of solar power and a 130% increase in power from wind farms, by 2023. When power requirements and power availability don’t see eye to eye, Europe has to buy electricity generated from other sources to make up the difference.

The Baltic lunge for true energy independence comes as Russia is upgrading and modernizing its national power grid, using a partnership majority-owned by Alstom Grid, a French multinational whose grid operations are owned by General Electric. Although western sources are derisive of the Russian power grid, citing its wasteful inefficiencies and ancient technology, they are forced to admit it soldiers on, year after year. They like to point out that modern switchgear is only available in the big cities, while small towns have much more primitive systems. Uhh….where is that not true?

Prediction time – if the EU is still around as a political entity by the time the Baltic pups fasten onto its sparking teats, Lithuanians, Latvians and Estonians are going to be paying a lot more for electricity supplies which are no more dependable. But that’s always a fair exchange, when it means you breathe the sweet air of independence.

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655 thoughts on “Will the Last Person in Lithuania Please Turn Out the Lights?

  1. NATO summit has ended. Trump made a lot of noise before the NATO meeting.

    It was all a pantomime,

    The communique that is released obtains all the typical NATO Russia bashing. As that is what NATO is for,

    -NATO expansion will continue and include Macedonia or whatever they are called now

    – Russia must withdraw from Crimea Ukraine, South Ossetia etc etc

    – exercises on Russia’s border will continue – but they are not a threat to Russia- really what a load of nonsense

    Next up is Trump meeting with the British

    I expect him to endorse all Theresa Mays nonsense about Novichok.
    And criticise those terrible Russians killing junkies.

    Meeting him is a waste of time for Russia.
    I think it will make things worse.

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    1. ” … Trump made a lot of noise before the NATO meeting … It was all a pantomime …”

      Wow, that is what I call a mixed metaphor.

      Seriously though, I think it is worth Putin’s time to meet Trump if only to gauge Trump’s character and to see if there’s any substance and sincerity behind the bluster. As with Kudrin, Putin may like to keep his enemies close.

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      1. I agree; if Russia cancelled it, The USA would claim a victory – that Putin could not stand Trump’s ‘straight talk’, that it fears ‘American justice’. Going ahead with the meeting will be a good opportunity for Putin to make Trump look like a fool. Because he is one.

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    2. In the words of the remarkable (and Pulitzer-winning) Richard Russo, from the great, “Everybody’s Fool”, we do not forgive people because they deserve it. We forgive people because we deserve it.

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  2. Neuters via Antiwar.com: Poland says war-time killings tarnish ties with Ukraine
    https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-poland-ukraine/poland-says-war-time-killings-tarnish-ties-with-ukraine-idUKKBN1K12IS

    Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Wednesday reconciliation with neighbour Ukraine could take place only when Kiev accepts responsibility for the “genocide” of Poles killed by Ukrainian nationalists during World War Two….

    ….According to Kiev, Poland’s President Andrzej Duda declined to hold joint commemorations of the 1943-45 events together with his Ukrainian counterpart in what Ukraine hoped would have been a sign of reconciliation and unity towards Russia.

    In the end, Duda went to western Ukraine, while Poroshenko visited Poland last week, where he lay flowers at a memorial for Ukrainian villagers killed by Poles. He emphasised that Ukrainians and Poles often fought side by side against common enemies, listing conflicts when they battled Russia together. …
    ####

    More at the link.

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  3. Neuters via Antiwar.com: Trump, Putin may agree to resume stalled arms control talks
    https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-usa-russia-summit-arms/trump-putin-may-agree-to-resume-stalled-arms-control-talks-idUKKBN1K12UC

    …When the two meet in Helsinki on Monday they are likely to touch on whether to extend that agreement to 2026 and what to do about another pact, the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) to try to dampen a high-risk nuclear rivalry between the two former Cold War foes. ..
    ####

    The US has nothing to offer Russia. Will they withdraw Missile Defense from Europe? No. Will they withdraw NATO from Russia’s border? No. It’s simply wrong to think that Russia ‘needs a new agreement’ more than the US and is atypical of flawed strategic thinking that has bedeviled the US since 1989. So if the US has got nothing to offer then what is left? Only threats. And how would such an agreement stop USDoS threats to sanction any European company involved with NSII or any other Russian project? It wouldn’t. I expect Putin to hear Trump out and see if they are serious or not, out of good diplomatic behavior. Russia can afford to wait…

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  4. The Czech parliament has confirmed a Babiš minority government today. All the efforts by the rest of the Czech political scene to strangle it at birth (coz Babiš is not a Russophobe) have now officially failed. Not that they will give up.

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  5. Vis my previous comment about the Badinter Commission (setup by the EC foreign ministers) to break up Yugoslavia legally along its administrative borders, it is quite legitimate to point out to anyone complaining about Crimea that it is fully in line with Badinter:

    How the Badinter Commission on Yugoslavia laid the roots for Crimea’s secession from Ukraine
    http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/europpblog/2015/02/20/how-the-badinter-commission-on-yugoslavia-laid-the-roots-for-crimeas-secession-from-ukraine/

    The Russian annexation of Crimea, together with the on-going war in eastern Ukraine, have raised fundamental questions concerning the right of a territory to secede from a larger state. Cornelia Navari writes on the influence of the Badinter Commission, which was set up to provide legal advice during the breakup of Yugoslavia. She argues that while the secession of Crimea from Ukraine remains deeply controversial, it largely followed the ‘template’ set by Badinter.

    Generally regarded as the basis of the post-Cold War territorial settlements, the Arbitration Commission of the Conference on Yugoslavia (referred to as the Badinter Commission after its chairman Robert Badinter) separated territoriality from ethnicity and made the internal borders of Yugoslavia the borders of the successor states: a principle initially accepted by the former Soviet Union and its successor states. But Bosnia could not be held within the principles and Kosovo was a direct contradiction of them, not to mention Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Crimea.

    The strains of keeping within Badinter have revealed inherent difficulties in dispensing entirely with the ethnic principle as a territorial concept, not least by the constitutional judges who made up the Arbitration Commission. They endorsed cultural nationalism, encouraged a significant degree of political self-determination, and legitimated identity nationalism as a genuine aspiration of peoples. Crimea, with borders, a separatist movement, a denial of identity rights and a recognised right to autonomy, is as much a child of Badinter as a breakaway from it.

    The Badinter Commission and Crimea

    The Badinter Commission was established by European Community foreign ministers in 1991 to arbitrate among ‘relevant Yugoslav authorities’ in the impending break-up of Yugoslavia. Its opinions, issued between November 1991 and January 1992, served effectively as the peace treaty that ended the Cold War in Europe. At its heart was the separation of territoriality and self-determination from the ethnic principle.

    The territorial principle was expressed in Opinion 3, in response to the question: ‘Can the internal boundaries between Croatia and Serbia and between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia be regarded as frontiers in terms of public international law?’ The Commission determined that, ‘except where otherwise agreed, the former boundaries become frontiers protected by international law’, basing its decision on two principles: respect for the territorial status quo and, ‘in particular. . .the principle of uti possidetis’, which endorsed colonial boundaries.

    But the territorial settlements after the First World War involving the dissolution of three empires (and the closest approximation to a precedent for the post-1990 situation in Europe) had displayed very little regard for internal borders. That Badinter felt uncertain in applying the principle is demonstrated by the judges immediately moving on to give a constitutional justification, calling on the second and fourth paragraphs of Article 5 of the Constitution of Yugoslavia (in which each republic respected the borders of the others). It also endorsed the ‘tough’ version of uti possidetis – no change of territory at all.

    When Croatia declared its intention to separate from Yugoslavia, it did so by appealing to the right of self-determination, echoed by Chancellor Helmut Kohl in granting recognition to Croatia. The right to self-determination appears in the United Nations Charter, article 1.2 of which extends the right of self-determination to all peoples. (Other sources, such as the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples, refer to colonised peoples only.) However, the Charter does not define what is to be understood by the word ‘peoples’, or how their right is to be exercised. The Badinter Commission took the view that ‘in its present state of development, international law does not make clear all the consequences which flow from this principle’.

    The critical statement is Opinion 2, issued in response to the question: ‘Does the Serbian population in Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, as one of the constituent peoples of Yugoslavia, have the right to self-determination?’ The Commission substituted the term ‘communities’ for ‘peoples’ and assigned to such communities rights within existing states, recognising ‘that within one State, various ethnic, religious or linguistic communities might exist’ and stated that all such communities have the right to see their respective identities recognised and to benefit from ‘all the human rights and fundamental freedoms recognised in international law, including, where appropriate, the right to choose their national identity’.

    The link between self-determination and human rights was made explicit in paragraph 2, in which the Commission called on the two 1966 international covenants on human rights. By this association, and a corollary of it, a people must have the right to determine its own fate in order for individuals to have the right to determine theirs. In Opinion 4, it authorised the referendum as a final test for separation.

    But law was by no means the final arbiter of the post-Cold War settlements, at least not in the area of guaranteeing the rights of ‘communities’. Scant attention was given to the Albanian minority in Macedonia or the Serbs of Bosnia, and Croatia was not given a clean bill of health by the Council of Europe until 2000. Neither Estonia nor Latvia made concessions on granting citizenship rights to Russian speakers, provoking formal complaints by Russia to the Council of Europe.

    On the territorial side, the western powers were forced to amend their determination on ‘first layer down’ in drawing new borders for, and in authorising full powers to the Republika Srspka, in Bosnia, in 1995 and to depart from it entirely in their recognition of Kosovo in 2006, provoking Russia to recognise Abkhazia and South Ossetia two months later, and on similar grounds, of a ‘remedial right’.

    Despite their condemnation of Russia’s ‘annexation’ of Crimea, the Crimean case followed on from Abkhazia and South Ossetia and all three followed closely the Badinter ‘template’. All three were autonomous provinces with clear borders; none belonged by tradition to their respective predecessor states; all could defend separation by referendum (and by degrees of repression); all were ‘peoples’ within their territories and not ‘minorities’. All had great power backing.

    The conclusion of Asborn Eide, long-term member of the UN Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights and drafter of numerous reports on the protection of minorities, seems the fairest: ‘When a group living together compactly in a geographical region or enclave… claims that it is a people rather than a minority’, and when ‘neighbouring States and/or the international community react in ambiguous ways to such claims, or even endorse them, the future status of that territory is thrown into uncertainty’.

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    1. An excellent reference. The west stands on its status as arbiter of what is ‘legitimate’ and what is not, and it has no grounding in law but is based on emotion and strategic self-interest.

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    1. “As the tournament got underway, it became clear that many in Russia shared the lawmaker’s concerns.”

      Became clear how? Well, social media, of course! Where people are named “Yitnaz4532” and suchlike, and you have no idea if they are a real person or not. In fact, what if it’s the St Petersburg troll factory and its army of bots? No, of course not – there’s no chance this is fake, because it’s racist, and therefore represents the true thoughts of a significant group of real Russians, because they are racists.

      All any politician has to do to become the real face of the Kremlin for western media is to say something scandalous. Then they immediately not only speak for the government, they speak for all of the people as well. Tamara Pletnyova is 71 years old this year, and I doubt you would call her views on morality progressive. Does that mean everyone thinks like her? What if everyone in America thought, like ‘American lawmaker’ Ted Stevens, that the internet is a series of tubes? Is everyone in America that fucking stupid? Is that fucking stupidity official US government policy? Remember Ukraine’s 2015 “Don’t Give It To a Russian” campaign? The west not only thought that was mature and hip, they expressly compared it to the poetry of Taras Shevchenko and a national boycott of Russian-made goods!

      http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/ukrainian-women-urged-withhold-sex-russian-men-article-1.2160501

      The western press makes me sick, and calling it ‘hypocrisy’ is a compliment – it is simple race-baiting hatred generation and encouragement, and Russia should shut the Moscow Times down completely and kick everyone who works there out of the country. It’s like the USA encouraging the “Jim Crow Times” to set up in Alabama. There is very little actual news ever reported by MT, it is mostly a collection of opinion columns by rabid neocons and Russian self-loathing kreakles. Shut them down and kick them out.

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  6. However, 6 days ago from the British Independent rag, owned by a Russian, of course:

    WHY THE WORLD CUP WILL OPEN RUSSIA UP TO TOURISM

    Since the highly controversial decision to award the World Cup in successive tournaments to Russia and Qatar, the 2018 host nation has annexed Crimea, backed a tyrant in Syria and stifled domestic political dissent at home. Russia has also been blamed for downing Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 with the deaths of all 298 on board, and bringing lethal poison to Wiltshire.

    Yet even before next weekend’s final, plenty of people say that the undisputed World Cup winner is Vladimir Putin. The president will seize upon the success of Russia 2018 to bolster his corrupt and cruel regime.

    My sense, though, is that the World Cup could end up as a victory for openness and tolerance – with travel at the forefront.

    As with football, so with tourism: Russia has long punched below its weight. A nation that encompasses a rich heritage, spectacular landscapes and the world’s greatest urban creation in the shape of St Petersburg should attract more than 177,000 British visitors annually; Spain gets that many UK tourists in four days.

    A month-long festival of football may achieve what decades of detente could not: mutual, people-to-people respect. More pragmatically, millions of Russians have discovered that tourists bring in billions of roubles, create employment and are happy to regard a Soviet-era apartment as a perfectly good place to stay when there is no room at the Intourist Hotel.

    [My stress. Just roll out those memes!!!]

    What, no prediction of Russia swarming in 9 months’ time with children of mixed race?

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    1. He wishes. In fact, what seemed to interest him most was that he could, for the first time, enter Russia without a visa. You can understand why a whole cornucopia of westerners would be interested in seeing that policy continued. not to mention the restoration of western NGO’s, and so on and so on. I imagine there will be renewed interest in tourism to Russia, but the doors are not going to be thrown open to Ryan Fogles.

      https://www.cbsnews.com/news/russia-spy-agency-claims-cia-agent-arrested-for-trying-to-recruit-russian-agent-in-moscow/

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  7. Sorry I can’t post the link – but on the Daily Mail breaking news – another alleged poisoning in Salisbury.

    “Emergency workers in hazmat suits respond as man in his 30s falls ill ‘amid lots of shouting and screaming’ yards from where Russian spy Sergei Skripal ate after being poisoned 

    • Police close road after man falls ill near Zizzi where former Russian spy dined
    • Fire fighters were pictured at the scene as they continue to enforce a cordon
    • It comes after two were also poisoned with Novichok nerve agent in Ames bury”  

    What timing just as Trump sits down to dinner with Theresa May.

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  8. “We can now confirm that there is no concern for either his health or any wider risk to the public,” the update stated. “We understand that out initial response to the incident may have looked alarming, but we hope you appreciate why we needed to take this highly precautionary measure.”

    Unconfirmed social media reports suggested that the man in question is homeless and fell ill outside of the Tesco near the restaurant. A witness told Sky News that the man was “sat on the floor, completely conscious [and] talking” as emergency personnel questioned him.

    Source: Sputnik

    “Sat on the floor” eh?

    So in Wiltshire they say the same as they do where I come from and not “sitting”.

    Bumpkins!

    🙂

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    1. “We understand that our initial response to the incident may have looked alarming, but we hope you appreciate why we needed to take this highly precautionary measure.”

      Yeah, we do: because Trump is at Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Oxfordshire, right now — a 2 hour drive away.

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  9. And on and on it goes:

    Novichok ‘could have been smuggled into UK through airport’ in container discovered by Charlie Rowley and Dawn Sturgess

    A senior government scientific source said the nerve agent was “exactly the same” in both incidents.

    “We know it’s the same chemical, what we don’t know at the moment is whether it’s from the same batch,” he told journalists including The Independent.

    Asked whether the nerve agent could have been brought in through a UK airport undetected, he replied: “It could be… it’s a small volume and it’s not difficult to think you might be able to conceal that.

    declassified British intelligence states that in the 2000s a covert Russian programme trained agents in “ways of delivering nerve agents, including by application to door handles” – the method used to attack Mr Skripal.

    The senior government scientific source would not attribute responsibility for either incident but noted: “You don’t make this stuff in a shed, you make it in a fully equipped high-containment chemistry facility with experienced chemists.

    “As far as I’m aware it’s a Russian thing and the Russians have got it.

    [my stress]

    Well, who can argue with that?

    Russia is clearly responsible for the mother-of-three’s murder.

    And for the attempted murders of the Skripals and Sturgess’ junkie partner.

    I wonder where the Skripal’s are now?

    I wonder what Miss Skripal’s source of income is?

    Papa Sergei’s source of income is obvious.

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    1. Unlike the USA, Russia has actually destroyed its stocks of nerve and chemical agents.

      The logic fail with these clowns is epic. Since some agent related to Sarin was developed by the USSR during the 1980s, Russia must, therefore have it stocked. Sure.

      BTW, this “novichok” crap is clearly not a nerve agent related to Sarin or VX. It is supposedly persistent (e.g. resistant to chemical degradation and does not evapourate readily). Its toxicity also does not resemble any VX-like neurotoxin. Handling a doorknob smeared with VX will kill anyone without the right sort of gloves in minutes. There will be no recovery in hospital. There are no “anti-agents” that will magically neutralize it.

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      1. From the Independent article that Moscow Exile linked to originally:

        “… Novichok, which attacks the nervous system and can lead to respiratory failure and cardiac arrest, can be absorbed through the skin, inhaled or ingested.

        Anyone exposed to it can be treated with an antidote if they are seen early enough, or the body can recover by naturally regenerating the enzyme that novichok attacks …”

        Eh? Where did the writer discover the regeneration bit? How would the human body be able to regenerate the relevant enzyme (acetylcholinesterase) if it’s already dead from Novichok? And what sort of regeneration is involved – wouldn’t normal DNA activity in the cells be creating the enzyme constantly anyway? The writer must be watching too many recent Doctor Who episodes.

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        1. They’re just trying to explain a natural recovery which in principle could never happen. A nerve agent takes away muscle control so that the afflicted person cannot breathe, and he/she asphyxiates. If the Skripals were attacked with a nerve agent in a concentration sufficient to have affected them to the degree they were unconscious, they would be dead.

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        2. Since the whole accusation is a crock, every “journalist” is free to concoct any story that makes it plausible. Neurotoxins don’t just disrupt the activity of one enzyme or block one receptor. They have multiple biochemical impacts. The problem is getting rid of them and that is what anti-bodies or some sort of binding agents are supposed to do. The damage to the metabolism does not stop until the toxins are neutralized in one way or another.

          There are no magical chemicals that will neutralize VX type neurotoxins especially if there was never any research to devise such agents. But the show stopper is the rate of impact of the VX and similar. They kill too fast for any intervention. That includes both antibody production or medical assistance. So you are right on target with your observation.

          The theory that the Skripals got sick from the doorknob but did not die are ridiculous. Any assassins would know the persistence of the toxin they use and would dab on enough of it to do the job. What is the point of half-assed assassinations? To give the British media something to talk about? Why not just then use a sniper rifle or just a regular gun with a silencer. These days such guns are made out of plastic and ceramic and can be smuggled into any country when disassembled.

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    2. If it’s exactly the same in both incidents, how could it have been from two different batches? And if it indeed was exactly the same, they’ll never know, so why even speculate that there may have been another batch? Do we really have to put up with this?

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      1. I would guess the speculation of another batch is specifically for the moment when, pressed for evidence, the “authorities” can present some hot air in a vial and fearlessly hand it over to an “accredited scientific facility” for “unbiased 3rd party testing”. When this testing, despite all efforts, fails to indicate the presence of a matching substance to what they claim was used to attempt the Skripal “assassination”, they can then proclaim that it is highly likely that it must have been from that other super secret batch. The Russians are just so devious, so clever, so unabashedly evil you see, that they figured they would be found out by the good guys right quick, and thus made a separate batch of nerve agent specifically to ditch in a random place and time to throw the Brits off their trail yet again.

        To answer your last question: Unfortunately, yes…yes we do. Because this is reality now.

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        1. My official guess is that the possibility of a ‘second batch’ is extended to explain away the impossibility of the first agent still being active after four months, despite not being strong enough to kill its targets when it was initially delivered. But it must be ‘exactly the same stuff’ to forestall those who suggest the second batch was made by different people.

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  10. Well, well; serendipity, Ukraine-style. Just yesterday I posted a story which detailed a civil breakdown in Ukraine which might leave Ukrainian cities without clean drinking water, because the company which manufactures liquid chlorine had to cease operations owing to the high cost of gas. The high cost of gas, in turn, is a must-have that the IMF has been hammering on for years in exchange for loans which Ukraine cannot afford to pay back. So obviously bringing the cost of gas down is not an option.

    Heyyyyy….I know what would work! And quick as a flash, a story breaks in the American media that Russian hackers have targeted Ukraine’s water system!

    https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/world/russian-hackers-targeted-ukraines-water-supply/ar-AAzUIMN?li=AA54rU

    Liquid chlorine? What are you talking about? Chlorine is a GAS, dummy! It was the Russians, they’ve done it again, attacked peaceful Ukraine, this just can’t be tolerated any longer.

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    1. A few points of clarification – chlorine under sufficient pressure liquefies at ambient temperature and is often stored that way. Natural gas is not used in its production; rather an electrolysis process involving a suitable sale is generally used. Sometimes, chlorine dioxide is used rather than elemental chlorine.

      Running out of a commodity like chlorine is simply incomprehensible. It can be obtained in bulk form (by the rail car if large quantities are needed).

      This shortage appears contrived but why? A guess is that someone wants a public health disaster to blame on you-know-who.

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      1. Isn’t that what ultimately caused the 500,000 child deaths in Iraq (“It was worth it” – Mad. Albright)? They ran out of chlorine, the coalition bombed the facilities that produced it, and then the US put it on the sanctions list.

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      2. I told you why. They are perfectly capable of making it, but the company which appears to be the city’s sole contractor has said it can’t do it any more because the power supply to run the process – natural gas – has become too expensive. If they continue to make liquid chlorine for the city they will be operating at a loss for patriotic reasons, because they cannot break even and continue to purchase energy. It is their way of getting it out front that gas prices are too high. But the government can’t lower them, because everyone’s gas prices are too high, but it is the IMF which has Porky by the balls that insists gas prices be high and ever higher so as to bring them into line with what Europe pays.

        There very likely is a back-story. probably the Ukrainian government is squeezing the company’s owner for something, perhaps trying a takeover, and the owner may be using embarrassment of the government as a retaliation. But the root problem as declared is that gas prices are too high for the company to continue its operations. The government has quickly dodged by blaming the problem on Russian hacking.

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        1. Sounds similar to the back-story to Arkady Babchenko’s faked murder. Recall that he participated in a scheme set up by the SBU to trap businessman Boris Herman, whose business was in producing optics for sniper rifles. The SBU must have been a major client for such products and in all likelihood wanted to take over the business by pushing him out. Framing him for supposedly hiring a hitman to take out Babchenko and getting him charged, convicted and jailed would have got rid of him.

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  11. Donald Trump says Boris Johnson would make ‘great prime minister’
    13 JULY 2018 • 12:43AM

    Boris Johnson would make “a great prime minister” because “he’s got what it takes”, Donald Trump has said just days after the former foreign secretary quit Theresa May’s Cabinet.

    The US President said he was “very saddened” to see Mr Johnson leave the Government because he is “a very talented guy” for whom “I have a lot of respect”.

    However Mr Johnson’s successor as Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, was doing “a terrible job” and was failing the capital over terrorism and crime, he said.
    He also controversially said immigration had “changed the fabric of Europe”.

    And he admitted that he “feels unwelcome” in London because of mass protests organised to disrupt his visit.

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    1. News headline; “Donald Trump – Wrong On Everything”. He likes Johnson – if he even really does, because he often just says things as if he does not even hear them coming out of his mouth – because he sees in him a reflection of himself; someone who can pull a lie out of his butt with no prompting and tell it in a manner he believes is both convincing and undetectable as a lie.

      Like

        1. Justin Bieber Trudeau’s hobby is causing embarrassment to himself and his foreign hosts. Look at what he did when he visited India in early 2018: he must have thought “when in Rome, do as the Romans do”, only when he applied that maxim to himself and his family, he ended up making himself look rather kitsch and patronising.


          http://wcmimages.edmontonsun.com/images?url=http://postmediacanoe.files.wordpress.com/2018/02/correction-india-canada2.jpg&w=840&h=630

          Like

    1. Predictably, those who support him suggest it was just a bit of fun and profess enjoyment for a moment of light-heartedness, while those who do not howl that it is an insufferable embarrassment, mortifying behavior. I personally think Trudeau has been told so many times how good-looking he is that he has come to believe himself irresistible to women and cannot stop himself from turning on a blast of charm whenever there is a pair of breasts in the room. Whatever was the real motivation is irrelevant to me, as there are no real leaders left in the west. When he’s gone, we’ll wave “Good-bye, idiot”, and some other idiot will take up the reins. Politics has reached its perigee, at which even prostitution looks respectable by comparison, and we just keep blundering along with ‘elections’ because it’s all we know how to do when really, random selection of any dolt off the bus chosen at random would bring just the same results. Trudeau is in love with liberalism, and imagines that playing to every disadvantaged group while championing the causes of those who are furthest from himself – straight, white, handsome, has a bit of money and few cares – is nobility. His predecessor, Stephen Harper, was as like a neoconservative American Republican as it is possible for a Canadian to be, and worshiped the cause of international commerce. Canadian politicians in between those two poles are various degrees of addle-headed bewilderment, and Canada is just a microcosm of the greater west. Nobody does privileged entitlement like the Europeans, but they nonetheless all suck at their jobs. There are no leaders. There are those who facilitate corporatism, who are talked up by the corporate-controlled media as if they were the Second Coming of Christ, and those who oppose it, who are damned by that same media is weak, vacillating embarrassments. But the west has no real leaders left. Politics as a business has bred out all leadership traits.

      Like

  12. Michael Jagger in St. Basil’s Cathedral yesterday, where he was given a guided tour and listened to the choir singing church music. Apparently he said that the choristers’ singing was “wonderful” and was later photographed talking to them.

    Why didn’t anyone tell him to take his hat off in church?

    Were they too polite to do so?

    Like

      1. That was the no-go point for my stepfather, and he is probably lucky to have died a bit before the baseball cap became such an ubiquitous item of North-American attire that many men don’t even remember they’re wearing it because they always are except when they go to bed or take a shower. If we were at a restaurant and another customer was wearing a hat, my Dad couldn’t enjoy his meal – he would have to go over to his table and ask him to remove it. Nobody ever refused, which was probably fortunate because he wouldn’t go back to his own table until they did.

        Like

      2. If Mick Jagger were to have taken the cap off, his hair would come off with it and the whole world would be aghast to learn the awful truth: that Jagger really is old and not just a wrinkly version of Peter Pan.

        Like

      3. It surprised me to see photographs of Sir Michael wearing a baseball cap in a Russian Orthodox church because, in my experience, there always hang around Russian Orthodox Churches old and wizened Stormtrooper grannies, ever on guard for breach of ROC rules and regulations.

        Their minimum age is 85 years and they are dressed in black from head to toe. At first sight, they appear rather innocuous: just devout ancients who shuffle around in the gloom, removing and replacing flowers and the numerous guttering, smoky, tallow tapers that are in front of icons and the great cross, on which an image of their god incarnate is depicted as nailed and in agony, whilst at the image’s impaled feet are a skull and crossbones. That’s where most of the tapers are — great banks of them. It’s where the believers honour their dead. And there’s always one of the Stormtroopers hanging around there, removing the burnt out illuminations.

        However, if any one dare break the rules whilst in or on the precincts of an ROC church, these black widows, as widows the vast majority of them must certainly be, seem to home in automatically on the offender, whom they accost and harangue and, hopefully, drive out of the church.

        This often happens if unsuspecting foreign women venture inappropriately dressed into an ROC church, namely in short skirts, head uncovered and wearing a low-cut dress or blouse not buttoned from the neck down or one that displays bare arms.

        in the early ’90s, I even used to see these attacks carried out against unsuspecting Russian women, at a time when it had become fashionable for small-time Russian gangsters to appear in Russian churches with their molls, which latter being atheist airhead accessories to their dickhead paramours, had no idea about church decorum.

        And once, even Natalya Vladimirovna Exile, baptised in the ROC a few days after her birth in the USSR (at the wonderfully named church “The Icon of the Mother of God, Joy of All Who Sorrow”, Bolshaya Ordynka Street, Moscow), was once a recipient of these harridans’ attention when, in my company, she walked into a church whilst wearing a short sleeved blouse and was told to cover herself.

        I suppose the old bags at St. Basil’s are all Rolling Stones fans.

        Like

  13. Meanwhile, in Syria there was a symbolic moment when the Syrian government flag was raised over Deraa, at the place where the civil war began. According to Krutikov, the Syrian Opps agreed in full to government’s terms of capitulation.
    The Syrian Civil War is, in essence, over, and Assad won.

    Next step is maneuvering of world leaders. Netanyahu, the sponsor of ISIS, flew to Russia to talk to Putin, probably about the Golan Heights. Israelis are just maneuvering now, and trying to eke some small victory from the jaws of the big defeat they and their proxies have suffered.

    Like

  14. Moscow Filthy Times hard at it as usual:

    July 12 2018 – 11:07
    Medical Staff for Russian Team Argue ‘Smelling Salts Are Legal’

    After the Sochi Winter Olympics, more than a dozen Russian athletes were stripped of medals over an alleged state-sponsored doping program.

    No knowledge, it seems, at MT about this:

    Lifetime Olympic bans lifted for 28 Russian athletes, some past medals to be restored

    Fuck MT and its filth staff off out of Russia!!!!

    Like

    1. Wonder if it was ever there in the first place? I thought these people were homeless. So the two of them must have been poisoned at his house, and then – just like the Skripals – made it while being to all appearances unaffected, to wherever they collapsed. That’s quite a nerve agent; it’s certainly not like any other of the title.

      With a true nerve agent, meaning one other than whatever this is that they’re describing as a nerve agent, effects are almost instantaneous after initial exposure, and if the concentration is sufficient to inspire effects then death usually occurs in less than 10 minutes.

      Like

      1. My impression from reading early reports about this couple was that Sturgess was homeless but Rowley was living in a moderately expensive house. Not sure if it was originally public housing or if he bought it using his own money.

        Like

  15. Another breaking story:

    https://www.zerohedge.com/

    Mueller Indicts 12 Russian Intel Officials For Hacking DNC, Hillary Campaign

    “The DOJ announced charges against 12 Russian intelligence officers for hacking offenses during the 2016 presidential election. The indictments were announced by Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein as part of Mueller’s counsel probe into potential coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia.

    The charges include conspiracy to commit an offense against the U.S., conspiracy to launder money, and aggravated identity theft – along with releasing the stolen emails on the web.”

    Surely this renders the Meeting in Helsinki pointless.

    The news cycle in America will be running with this story for the next few days.

    Like

    1. It’s not really meaningful to indict security officials from another country, whom you know very well speak a different language and will never agree to testify. The very fact that they work for a foreign security service is supposed to ensure their guilt in American eyes. Why so few indictments of Americans, who can and would testify? Are we supposed to believe it was just the Russians and Manafort – who thus far has no charges against him for Russian hacking, but for lobbying in Ukraine – and Trump? And nobody has yet explained how the release of damaging information about a presidential candidate which is true is ‘hacking’, regardless who actually did it. Everything released about Clinton was true and accurate, and if she was unaware of the below-the-radar campaign to sink Bernie Sanders, then it’s hard to imagine how she is the spearpoint for the Democrats. Debbie Wasserman-Shultz took the fall for that one, resigned and was promptly hired by Clinton. Classified information held on Clinton’s server was proven. Her allegation that she had been given permission to use a private server to communicate daily business as SecState was demonstrably a lie. She destroyed tens of thousands of emails on her own authority, which she said were ‘personal’, despite being ordered to hand over everything to the DOJ for review. Any other citizen who so flagrantly obstructed the course of justice would be in jail – anyone but a high-ranking politician. That’s the story everyone is being pushed to forget, so they can focus on some people who don’t even know what they’re being charged with and will never testify.

      The meeting was always pointless, but concerned parties in the USA are trying hard to get as much as they can out of it while simultaneously ensuring there will be no American concessions. None of this maneuvering and these strategic media releases is going to hurt Russia, though. They’re just going through the motions, while it was always Trump who hoped and planned to get something. His own side is making sure that doesn’t happen.

      Like

      1. What happened to the “hacking” of the ballots? Looks like that was fake news. So the whole story boils down to the DNC computers from which Seth Rich took the data to pass to WikiLeaks. No government agency ever investigated these computers yet somehow there are now indictments based on the alleged hacking of those machines.

        I am sure some smarmy US patriot will claim that the NSA can get all the incriminating evidence without investigating these DNC computers. Well, that sounds like a sting story made for TV. The NSA can only get information on the hackers to hack back to them in real time. Good luck with that. Even the stupid movies and TV note that skilled hackers cover their tracks. With enough IP jumps it becomes impossible to reverse-hack the hackers before they leave. It is similar to the kidnapper phone reverse trace limit.

        Like

        1. The entire story is a crock – if it were possible to sway an American presidential election so that the much-less-popular candidate won with nothing more than Facebook postings, American political parties would be on it like Rush Limbaugh on a baked ham. The identities of those who made those posts, a few hundred or a few thousand or whatever, was not known and claims to have established that some came from Russian servers are pure horseshit; you can bounce a posting through servers all around the world and back again until nobody has any clue where they originated. I don’t think anyone has ever claimed that actual votes were hacked; voting machines are not connected to the internet. I have never heard anyone complain that they planned to vote for Clinton, but then some random Facebook posting changed their mind and they voted for Trump. Information ‘stolen’ from the DNC servers was accurate, and the information that Clinton used a private server, had classified messages on it, was never given permission to do so and destroyed ‘personal’ emails before letting the DOJ comb her messages was all in the public domain. State employees warned Clinton for more than a year that she was not allowed to use a private server, and she claimed to have permission. Nobody had to read a Russian Facebook posting to know Clinton was and is a liar.

          The Demmycrats just keep plugging away at it because it’s all they’ve got.

          Like

  16. Meanwhile a father of two from north Wales was questioned over the Novichok poisonings after detectives found suspicious chemicals in his shed.

    David James, 36, was held in custody for nine hours after officers discovered dozens of test tubes and laboratory equipment during a search of his home.

    But it turned out the chemicals were harmless ingredients he was using to make soap in order to get his daughters interested in science.

    How come the plods went snooping in his home?

    source

    Like

    1. Remind anyone of the chemical-warfare mobile laboratories whose discovery Bush triumphantly announced, which turned out to be just what the Iraqis said they were – trailers used for filling weather balloons?

      If they’re already listing him as a father of two, it means his character is being scrubbed or else he is going to die.

      Like

    2. The UK is really an Orwellian toilet. The police can randomly search houses and any chemical can be deemed suspicious. Naturally the cops do not need to have a clue about chemistry. They are merely doing their “job” (to harass the citizens).

      Like

  17. I don’t know if you guys remember the Kirovles affair (Yalensis, you probably do, with all the extended research you did at that time): Ofitserov died today, apparently from the consequences of a seizure. Not many more details known for now.

    Like

        1. Ofitserov was only 43 He had a wife and several kids. I think Navalny helped to ruin his life.
          Most people who come into contact with Navalny seems to leave worse off than they were before.

          Like

          1. Navalny’s brother, Oleg Navalny, 35, came out of nick on Friday, June 29th after having served a 3½-year term for a fraud conviction.

            He was sentenced in December 2014 for defrauding a cosmetics company. His seemingly untouchable brother got a suspended sentence at the same trial.

            One would never guess that charlatan Lyosha is under a suspended sentence when one considers how many times he has since been arrested and charged with public order offences.

            (above) Navalny and his brother Oleg, who had just been released from prison. Oleg’s wife, Viktoria looks on, smiling.

            The prison (not a GULag!) is at Naryshkino, Orel region, 237 miles south of Moscow and not in Siberia.


            I did f***ing bird for you, you cnut, and I’m gonna smack this fist into your big fat lying gob!

            Like

    1. It goes a long way toward explaining why the business community loves Trump even as the rest of the country decides it hates him – he would sell his mother’s heart if he could make a profit, and brings his ‘deal-making’ bullying to everything, no matter how trivial, in order to win. He is a complete pig, and I will be surprised if anything worth saving of America remains by the time he’s out of office. However, I remain convinced that Hillary Clinton would have been worse for the world, although on issues like this, she would not likely have behaved the same way. But it really says something about the country, for the vote to have been down to one of those two.

      Like

      1. Trump is not that one dimensional; maybe 1.5 to 2.0 D.

        A fiendish plan is embedded in his simplistic rhetoric on trade relative to the EU. He is forcing EU to either put up or shut up. If they want Russian gas, get rid of NATO. If they do not want Russian gas, pony up the money for NATO and buy US LNG at three times the price. Europe, given that choice, would likely dump NATO albeit in a way to minimizes the appearance of a defeat. I think Trump would be OK with that.

        https://russia-insider.com/en/politics/trump-right-nato-obsolete-and-if-europe-wants-fight-imaginary-enemies-it-should-pay-its-own

        On a slightly different topic, the Empire is fearful that Trump may, this time, really pull the US out of Syria. Putin has made it easy by getting the Israelis to publicly acknowledge that Assad can stay (a huge and under reported climb down). Far from Russia selling out Syria, they virtually guarantee a total Syrian victory and future stability; as least as far as Israel is concerned. Russia is winning the “real” world cup of global leadership.

        Like

        1. Having failed to make a shop-window extravaganza of western victory – not to mention a sobering example of what happens to those who challenge western power (oh, it was an example, all right; just not the one Washington hoped to set), I would now be watching out for the back-shot if I were Assad. Some ‘crazy rebel’ on a ‘suicide mission’, maybe even someone on the inside. The west has no objection at all to political assassination, of course – it simply prefers showy victories with lots of bombs and diving planes and cruise missiles and shit, and letting the boys off the leash for a bit of fun. But if that fails for some reason…

          Like

          1. Yes, that is a good prediction The West may take a cheap shot at Assad (not that any of their shots were anything other than cheap). An inside job would be ideal – a repressed minority (a black widow would be idea) assassinates Assad. However, the backlash in the Syrian population would be substantial.

            Regarding significant military intervention, I think that the era of cruise missile diplomacy and humanitarian bombing is over given the fiasco of the most recent attack. There may be occasional probing attacks by Israel to gauge the effectiveness of Syria’s air defense but that should be about it; especially now that Israel has apparently been tamed by Russia.

            Like

  18. Sent down for 8, will do 6 because has already done 2 on remand …

    Родные украинского диверсанта на суде кричали «Слава Украине» и желали приставам гореть в аду

    Native Ukrainian saboteur shouted at the court: “Glory to the Ukraine” and wanted the officials to burn in hell

    Panov is a large, tall man and certainly does not give the impression of having been the victim of terrible torture, about which the Ukrainian media made a loud noise all the time.

    And Panov complained a lot through his counsel: he had been tortured by electric shock, beaten with an iron pipe; that it had even been arranged that he be put under psychological pressure; that his remand prison cell had been bugged — all of this had been done so that he confess that in August 2016 he had planned, together with other saboteurs, to blow up in the Crimea houses, bridges, power plants, dams, water pipes.

    And he admitted this: it is on video. He stated on camera that he had conducted reconnaissance and had been preparing terrorist attacks. For 3200 hryvnia ( about 8 thousand rubles).

    “We drove through Armyansk, Feodosia, Kerch, Dzhankoy, to determine the sites for sabotage. The chosen sabotage targets were the ferry, the depot in Feodosia, the helicopter regiment in Dzhankoy, and chemical enterprises”, Panov says in the video.

    Then in August 2016, the FSB announced that it had prevented a series of attacks that the Main Intelligence Department of the Ukraine Ministry of Defence had ben planning. The saboteurs had been planning to cause explosions targeted “against critical elements of the infrastructure and life support of the peninsula” on the eve of the elections to the State Duma of the Russian Federation.

    According to the FSB, several subversive groups had entered the Peninsula.

    With one of these groups operatives clashed during the night of 6 to 7 August in the North of the Crimea in the Armyansk region. About 20 people had tried to break into the Peninsula. A gun battle ensued, killing two: FSB Lieutenant Colonel Roman Kamenev and a Russian Federation Ministry of Defence serviceman, driver Simon Sychev of the 247-th Air Assault Regiment.


    Panov served in the so-called anti-terrorist operation zone from August 2014 to August 2015

    Many anti-personnel and magnetic mines, grenades and special weapons were found at the site of the armed clash, as well as 20 improvised explosive devices, the total capacity of which was more than that of 40 kilogrammes of TNT(!!!).

    An explosive capacity, the article goes on to say, that was sufficient to turn a whole housing block to dust.


    Glory to the Heroes!

    No physical training instructors in the glorious Yukie army?

    And don’t attacks against civilians, against “critical elements of the infrastructure and life support of the peninsula”, constitute a war crime?

    Well, apparently not if the civilians are Sovaks, Moskaly and other subhumans.

    Like

    1. I love it when idiots like that yell ‘Glory to the Ukraine!’ in defiance; it’s like a confession by the country as well as the accused. At least he didn’t yell ‘Glory to Canada’, or ‘Glory to West Yorkshire’, where some of his most vocal supporters live.

      Like

    2. I’ve got to admit, though, that he does seem to have a wound on his brow.

      Must have fallen down some remand prison steps, which happens with amazing frequency in British prisons and police stations, by the way — I mean falling down steps.

      In fact, I’ve fallen down cop shop steps on more than one occasion.

      Like

  19. Rest easy, England!

    In the end, none of your national football team players had to suffer the indignity of shaking hands with the vile dictator Putin.

    They didn’t even get the bronze.

    Like

    1. They did do quite well, though, and advanced far enough to build some serious excitement. The local paper called them ‘England’s young heroes’ and claimed they were ‘showing them how it’s done’. I suppose they meant Russia, since they advanced further than Russia did, but you must remember, we have a large British expat community. Anyway, well done, England.

      Like

      1. They never beat anyone of note.

        They beat Tunisia, popped in 6 against Panama and beat Columbia on a penalty decider and then beat Sweden, but were beaten by Croatia and Belgium.

        Having watched their past 2 performances, I reckon that if they had come up against Russia they just might have got beaten by them as well.

        Like

    2. Were I cruel I’d go along with the nonsense being spouted and sing along “Gareth Must Stay” but Gareth made a total James Hunt of this campaign. The player who would have gotten England to the final was left behind: Wilshere. And the guy who could’ve gotten them to the final (Rashford) was wasted as a substitute for the useless Sterling.

      And Kyle Walker? No, really? England won a watch by him having the meltdown vs Croatia.

      Against the Surrender Monkeys it’d be massacre time: “And zees one ees for Agincourt, M Rosbif.” A France-England final would have been funnier than fuck.

      Like

      1. England are f***ing CRAP!

        And Kane is a cnut!

        When I was watching the match live on Russian TV yesterday evening, every time Kane was given a pass near the Belgium goal, the commentators shouted out “Kane!”

        And then nothing happened.

        Ever.

        They are all feckin’ useless — apart from the goalie, maybe.

        They dance around the goal mouth (if they reach it) and seem not to know what to do. They never seem to know how to finish off an attack.

        Granted, I have never been a football fan and know shag all about the intricacies and tactics of the round-ball game, but it is clear to me that they are all (almost) as useless as is a one-legged man in an arse kicking contest!

        END OF RANT

        The Great Britain rugby league side is crap as well, as is the England rugby union team, but rugby union is crap, anyway.

        There are plenty of crappy things from and in the UK, apart from:

        me
        real pork sausages
        smoked back bacon
        Lancashire black pudding
        real ale
        Scotch whisky
        London dry gin
        the proximity of the sea
        the music of Elgar, Britten, Delius, Purcell, Tallis
        the works of Shakespeare and other writers
        custard
        Christmas pudding
        steak and kidney pudding
        kippers
        haggis
        Scottish square sausage
        Irish soda bread
        Bushmills Irish whisky
        finnan haddock
        Dover sole
        etc., etc.

        But football?

        Forget it

        🙂

        Like

        1. God heard my prayers!

          Now I have no other choice except to become a believer and devote the rest of my miserable life to prayers and fasting.
          A promise is a promise, as Ataman Kudear once said.
          Still, is worth it to not have to see that Croat fascist kiss the FIFA grail…
          Viva La France!

          Like

    1. Someone in the ground crew must have loaded a wrong-colour smoke canister into the plane, that’s all. Dumb, but hardly a conspiracy. I thought the French mockery of it was very Russian, like the way the Russians mocked their own Olympic-rings mishap at Sochi. I notice that the whole world tittered at the latter malfunction, although many countries now seem to think it would be impolite to make fun of France. The French themselves, though, handled it well.

      Like

      1. The Russian handled their (quite minor) opening ceremony snafu with humor as well via the closing ceremony that included a malfunctioning ring.

        Like

  20. Rosenberg of the BBC in fine fettle:

    Is Russia the real winner of World Cup 2018?
    By Steve Rosenberg
    BBC News, Moscow
    14 July 2018

    Rosenberg kicks off with praise and quoting others’ praise for the organization of the footballfest in Mordor:

    In more than 20 years of living in Moscow, I cannot remember a time when the city has felt more relaxed, more cosmopolitan, more welcoming…

    “I thank the Russian people for their hospitality,” England supporter Darren from Blackpool told me near Red Square. “Everything the British government has said about Russia is a lie. It’s propaganda. Fair play to Putin. He’s done a brilliant job with the World Cup”..

    I am delighted that visitors to World Cup Russia have experienced some of the things that I love about this country: the warmth of the people, their humour, their generosity. I am pleased that police on Red Square have been smiling…

    And now, in the second half, Rosenberg changes tactics:

    Police officers may be smiling now. But they were not smiling last May when they broke up an anti-Putin protest on Pushkin Square.

    A successful World Cup does not change the trend: in recent years democracy, human rights and freedom of speech in Russia have been under attack.

    An increasingly belligerent Russia annexed Crimea and has intervened militarily in eastern Ukraine. Russia stands accused of cyber attacks, of meddling in western elections and of carrying out the Novichok nerve agent attack in Salisbury.

    All of which the authorities here deny, and dismiss as Russophobia.

    Moscow has also denied any connection to the death of Dawn Sturgess, who was recently exposed to Novichok in Amesbury. In their coverage, state media here have suggested that Britain has used the incident to spoil Russia’s World Cup triumph.

    As for Russian officials, they are using praise from foreign football fans to try to discredit allegations against their country.

    “The problem with Russia’s image wasn’t created by Russia,” says Konstantin Kosachev, who chairs the foreign affairs committee of Russia’s upper house of parliament.

    “It was created by countries like the United Kingdom, spreading false information about Russia as a country.

    “They failed. We are happy that so many people in the UK and in other countries had a unique chance not to see channels like BBC telling stories about Russia, but to see the real Russia with their own eyes.”

    “But we’ve reported many positive things about Russia,” I point out. “I don’t know, I don’t follow the BBC, unfortunately,” admits Mr Kosachev.

    You, the BBC, have reported many positive things about Russia says Rosenberg.

    So tell me, Rosenberg, what exactly are these many positive things about Russia that you claim the Westminster controlled BBC has reported?

    Do you think folk can’t be arsed to check up on this claim of yours — you know, draw up a list of positive BBC reports about Russia and a list of negative ones?

    Yeah, you’re right!

    I can’t be arsed.

    Like

  21. Rosenberg! What do you think of this? …

    INCONSISTENCY AND RUSSOPHOBIC BIAS AT THE BBCFebruary 18, 2016

    BBC Russophobia / hatred

    And check out the positive BBC News stories on Russia here, updated at 18:01 this evening.

    From the period 11 July through to 14 July,2017, I have found only 2 positive stories in 10 listed:

    World Cup reunites pen pals 56 years on
    11 July
    A Chinese reporter covering the World Cup in Saransk, Russia, was approached by a woman who asked for his help to track down her Chinese correspondent from 56 years ago.

    Fernandez confirms Russian interest
    11 July
    Swansea City defender Federico Fernandez has confirmed Russian Premier League club Krasnodar FC wants him.

    Like

  22. AFP via SpaceDaily.com: Boeing, SpaceX unlikely to make manned flights to ISS in 2019
    http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Boeing_SpaceX_unlikely_to_make_manned_flights_to_ISS_in_2019_999.html

    … “There may be a gap in (US) access to the ISS if the Commercial Crew Program experiences additional delays,” the GAO said.

    “While NASA has begun to discuss potential options, it currently does not have a contingency plan for how to ensure an uninterrupted presence on the ISS beyond 2019,” it said.

    “It is possible that neither contractor would be ready before August 2020, leaving a potential gap in access of at least nine months,” the GAO said.

    The report said the United States could seek to obtain additional Soyuz seats but that may prove difficult.

    “The process for manufacturing the spacecraft and contracting for those seats typically takes three years — meaning additional seats would not be available before 2021,” it said…
    ####

    Ho! Ho! Ho! How about a giant trampoline?

    Like

    1. Not to worry, the US will declare a trade embargo on the ISS.

      There was a memo years (no luck finding via Google) from the head of NASA stating the Russia does not need the US to maintain the ISS but the US it completely dependent on Russia.

      In addition to transportation to and from the ISS, Russia supplied and maintains the modules that provide life support and reboost of the station to compensate for atmospheric drag.

      This link discusses possible Russian/China cooperation replacing Russia/US cooperation in space and includes other interesting links.

      https://www.popularmechanics.com/space/moon-mars/a19159719/roscosmos-china-collaboration/

      Like

  23. OK, Trudeau is not as embarrassing as this clown:

    The falling-down drunk Juncker seemed to fit well with the ceremony that was simply weird and, somehow, reality-defying.

    Like

    1. Exquisite! It must be cold in his shadow. How nefarious to conduct government business with a neighbouring state during the World Cup!

      Like

    2. Nemtsova:

      And of course amid all the hugging none of Putin’s guests mentioned the war in Ukraine, or if they did whisper something behind the smiles there was no mention on Russian state television

      Does she mean the civil war in the Ukraine, the one in which Ukraine military and Western Ukraine Nazis are killing Ukraine citizens in Eastern Ukraine in their “Anti Terrorist Operation”?

      The can’t call it a civil war, see, because if they did, they’d get no dosh off the IMF.

      And a strange enemy they have in Russia, which the brave Yukie army is resolutely holding at bay, the “aggressor state” that is their biggest trading partner.

      I wonder how many she thinks Russian armed forces butchered when they “annexed” and “occupied” the Crimea?

      Like

  24. The Russian web laughs at Porky’s NATO conference speech given in Brussels 3 days ago in front of a near empty hall:

    15.07.2018, 05:24
    The Russian Foreign Ministry has published a video of a Poroshenko speech in a half-empty hall
    The Russian Foreign Ministry has published a video of a briefing made by the President of the Ukraine Petro Poroshenko and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in Brussels. The performance took place before the half-empty room. One of those present left the room at that moment when Petro Poroshenko and Jens Stoltenberg come up to the microphones.

    When you don’t do something right

    The NATO summit in Brussels ended on July 12. At the meeting held within the framework of the summit with the participation of the Presidents of the Ukraine and Georgia, the representative of the alliance noted that reforms that were bringing the two former Soviet republics closer to joining NATO. At the same time, they held back from making a concrete statement as regards the timing of their possible joining the Brussels based alliance in.

    Usual comments off Russian self-loathing liberals, Svidomites and Baltic shits directed at the Russian FM for publishing this, e.g.

    Это полное дно, если такую херню постит МИД России. Следующее будет “Голые сиськи собирают 1000 лайков за час, посмотрим сколько соберёт наш президент!”

    If such shit is posted by the Russian Foreign Ministry, then this is the absolute bottom of the barrel. Next there will be “Bare tits collect 1000 likes in an hour”. Let’s see how many “likes” our president collects!”

    That’s from someone who goes under the name: “Putin is a Prick”.

    How many likes for President Putin?

    Off 77% of the electorate, they say, at the last presidential election.

    Why is it the bottom of the barrel to report that Poroshenko addressed an empty hall?

    Was it untruthful of the FM to publish this information?

    Was it an ad hominem attack against Poroshenko?

    Is he revered by all and sundry in the Ukraine?

    And there’s this reply to the FM, apparently from a Lithuanian:

    МИД педерации пробивает очередное дно

    The Ministry of Pederation reaches rock bottom

    Pun!

    Get it?

    Pederation — Federation.

    What an acerbic wit!

    So a report that the chief thief of the Ukraine addressed an empty hall whilst the NATO chief suck holed up to him as though he were a worthy man is reaching the bottom of the barrel of bad taste?

    Why?

    Below, the full, nauseating address made by the fat twat — if you can stand watching the crapulous cnut:

    Like

    1. I tell you another thing that bugs me and which has been copied in Europe from the US bullshit, showbiz style of politicking: the way Stoltenberg has turned to gaze in awe at his co-presenter, as though every word Porky utters were of inestimable worth.

      In the past, Stoltenberg would have stared fixedly straight on whilst Porky gabbled on, but not now.

      They all do this — Merkel, May, Macron …

      This US showbiz-style, insincere shit that is supposed to indicate sincerity is akin to that finger-pointing stunt they do.

      You know, that “Wow! Great to see you [points finger] have come here (to listen to the total shite I am going to sell you)”.

      Copied everywhere now by the lickspittle conmen.

      Who do they think they are kidding?

      Like

    2. It does look a little self-serving for it to be mocked thus in an official capacity by the Russian state. Obviously it happened the way it is described, but I daresay you can think of lots of times in your own life when it did you no good at all to be right. It would have been better for Russia in this instance to just say nothing, since the cause of Poroshenko has obviously crested and now his invitation to such events is just a nuisance. But now the west can focus on the fact that it was Russia who pointed it out, and that will provide another excuse for fury rather than acknowledging it happened as it did. The point is that it will harden their resolve to bring Ukraine into NATO rather than recognize its uselessness. In his turn, Poroshenko will recognize an opportunity and take advantage of it – he has no shame. So the net loser will be Russia. There was just no need of it.

      Like

      1. He’s done this before, though, hasn’t he: speaking to an echoing empty hall?

        II think it was at the last Davos joly that no one came to listen to what the animated turd had to say.

        Like

        1. Yes, everyone but the politicians is fed up with him and his stunts and his shameless gobbling for money all the time. And maybe the politicians are just acting as well, but they put up with his foolishness.

          Like

  25. Kremlin sees US president as ‘a moron to take advantage of’, believes one expert

    “The Kremlin views Trump for what he is – a moron to take advantage of, a novice to be played” — Vladimir Frolov, whom the Moscow Times and the Guardianetc. go to for words of wisdom concerning the “regime”.

    La Russophobe didn’t like him though:

    Pathological Neo-Soviet Liar

    Nor did the NYT, but who gives a flying fuck what that rag says?

    As a Russian Hurries Home, Washington Is Suspicious
    MARCH 19, 2001

    Vladimir Frolov, the press attaché in the Russian Embassy here, abruptly left for Moscow last week, his second tour of duty in the United States unexpectedly cut short.

    Mr. Frolov, who built a reputation among American journalists and experts at Washington policy organizations as a reliable and candid observer of United States-Russian relations, told reporters that he was returning home to join the Russian newspaper Izvestia.

    Whatever.

    However, it surely takes no great powers of the intellect to reach the conclusion that Trump is a moron.

    Like

  26. Victory Day 2018, Moscow

    They fly right over our house every year as it lies directly 1 flying mile further along their flight path after they have flown over Red Square.

    And all summer they do their training flights over our dacha. The aircraft are based about 5 or 6 miles away from our dacha territory. I never get tired of watching their cunning stunts when a squadron or whatever comes overhead for training, one of the aircraft, the boss, flies at a distance from them, and then they separate into pairs or groups of two or three and begin to sort of play tag in the sky with one another.

    Something like this:

    I try to take photos of them doing this, but they are too high up and I need a telephoto lens to do this.

    From the commentator’s plummy accent, I reckon that clip above might have been made at the Farnborough airshow.

    Farnborough was the home of the now defunct Royal Aircraft Establishment, situated about 30 miles south-west of central London.

    Like

    1. The choppers never fly over our house though. They must take a different flight path after flying over the square so as to get out of the road of them who are tear-arsing up behind of them.

      Like

      1. The Toilet Barf reported that Airbus was furious over T. May’s decision to hand the contract for the new radar planes to Boeing without a competition, or even asking Airbus. The more so because Airbus said that T. May asked it to provide a press release to say that hard brexit would risk many jobs and possibly Airbus’s position in the UK.

        Like

        1. Part of the reason Britain is leaving the EU is that it has become obvious that while it is located in Europe, it is in Washington’s pocket and functions as an arm of US diplomacy and foreign policy. I suspect much of the EU is glad to see the back of it, as the EU could never have any secrets from Washington while the British were there to whisper in Uncle Sam’s ear. Not that any of the current European leaders are much of an improvement on that.

          Like

  27. BBC continues to spread falsehoods, half truths and biased opinions:

    Young Russians see lives changed by feel-good World Cup
    By Nina Nazarova
    BBC Russian Service
    9 hours ago

    Some 70% of Russians do not have a passport and the effect of the visiting fans on the 11 cities that have hosted the tournament has been extraordinary.

    So what does Nazarova think about this article from the BBC:

    Is it true only 10% of Americans have passports?

    The share of the U.S. population with a passport stood at 27 percent in 2007 and that has now [2018] increased to 42 percentForbes

    So according to the BBC and Forbes, which uses the BBC as a source for this statistic, 58% of US citizens have no passport.

    Why was not this statistic compared with that applying to Russian holders of passports? I mean, it’s not that shit hot, is it?

    Perhaps US citizens feel so free and content in the USA that they don’t want to travel anywhere.

    I don’t want to travel anywhere either. Russia’s a big place — the biggest, in fact. There are plenty of places I dearly would like to visit here.

    My wife told me the other day that she wants to go to Turkey again with the girls. My son is courting and has, therefore, other interests. I am of a mind when she buggers off to Turkey, I’ll take the train to Vladivostok and back.

    Nazarova of the BBC continues:

    Normally in Russia, if you want to hold a public gathering you have to put in a request in advance.

    If it is an opposition rally you’re trying to organise, then the answer will probably be no.

    That is not true!

    Navalny, for it is undoubtedly him and his rubberduckians that she is writing about, are seldom, if ever, refused to hold a rally. What they are refused to do very often is to hold a really where they want to hold one, in the case of Moscow, on Moscow’s main drag, thereby causing great inconvenience for the vast majority of Moscow citizens, who do not give a flying fuck for Navalny and his fellow liberals and kiddie cohorts.

    In fact, on several occasions, liberal protesters against the “regime” have assembled where Moscow City authorities have given them the OK to do so (usually on Prospekt Akademika Sakharova); the authorities even allow them to parade from Pushkin Square on Tverskaya (the main drag) down along the Garden Ring (Strastnoy, Petrovskiy, Rozhdestvenskiy and Sretenskiy Bulvar) before turning off into Prospekt Akademika Sakhorova for their rally.

    All these thoroughfares are right slap bang in the middle of Moscow, but Navalny and his childish acolytes insist on parading down Tverskaya towards the Kremlin — because they have the right to do so.

    No they don’t have such a “right”! They have the right to assemble and protest peacefully were allowed to do so by the authorities, who have to manage the traffic congestion and the needs of 98% of the remaining citizens of Moscow.

    So on a couple of occasions of late, we have witnessed 2 rallies on the same day: one at Prospekt Akademika Sakharova (the “law abiding” liberals) and the other at Tverskaya, where Navalny leads his hamsters to mayhem and mass arrests i the name of “freedom of assembly”.

    The same applies in other cities in Europe and the world over: one has to have permission to parade and rally.

    I witnessed a huge parade of homosexuals in London on the first day that my family and I stayed there in June 2016. The homosexuals were allowed to assemble at and then parade from Hyde Park, along the Mall and the Haymarket then onto and half-way around Trafalgar Square, which they then exited in order to disperse; they were most certainly not allowed to parade down Whitehall to the Houses of Parliament, and if any of them had wished to do so so, there were police officers in abundance and barricades in plenty in order to deter them.

    There was a refugee football match in Red Square, in a country not renowned for taking refugees.

    Really?

    Development of incoming asylum applications in Russia 2000 to 2016

    I suppose she doesn’t count Ukrainians as asylum seekers/refugees.

    Like

    1. I suspect that a significant portion of surge of US passport holders (27% to 42%) in recent years was due to the new requirements that US visitors to Canada have a passport. Prior to that, a valid US driver’s license was sufficient. Per the link below, 14.3 million Americans visited Canada in 2017. The number of unique visitors was not given but it was likely in the many millions thus creating the new passport demand and not an indication of significantly increased foreign travel. Incidentally, the widely reported drop off in visits to the US, attributed to Trump’s election (the “Trump Slump”), was not the case.

      The statistics agency says the number of U.S. tourists rose 3.1 per cent in 2017 to reach 14.3 million, the highest figure since 2005, and there were also a record 6.5 million visitors from overseas countries, up 7.2 per cent from 2016.

      https://globalnews.ca/news/4036090/canada-tourism-record-2017/

      Like

  28. Is twerking still à la mode in les États-Unis d’Amérique, or is it already passé?

    I’ve not seen a good twerk for ages.

    See, I’m already psyching myself up for the big match this evening.

    Allez la France!

    Like

    1. The above is down here: like Longfellow’s arrow, my comment shot up into the sky, but unlike his arrow, I quickly found where it lay, but know not why..

      It was intended to be in reply to this comment from Patient Observer:

      At least they are not high-fiving, doing fist bumps or synchronized twerking (yet).

      Like

          1. FOX sports briefly (2 seconds at most) showed Putin sitting next to a man who looked athletic. They appeared to be exchanging a joke as both were animated and laughing.

            Like

            1. I was only just saying to the wife “Where’s Putin?” because there was a shot of that Croat blonde in a red and white chequered dress, on whom the cameras focused while that prick Medvedev was constantly grinning at and chatting to her to the other week.

              Like

                1. Did you not see women dressed in what looked police uniforms running onto the pitch during the 52nd minute of the match?

                  Guess who they were …?

                  Pussy fecking Riot.

                  https://twitter.com/pussyrrriot?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1018528838505127937&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.gazeta.ru%2Fsport%2Fworldcup2018%2Fnews%2F2018%2F07%2F15%2Fn_11793583.shtml

                  The “action” was called by the performance artists “A policeman enters the game”.

                  Strangely, they used the former Soviet term “Militia Man”, which was what the police were called here until a few years ago.

                  No show without Punch, is there?

                  See: Участники Pussy Riot выбежали на поле во время финального матча ЧМ‍

                  Members of Pussy Riot ran onto thepitch during the final match of the world Cup
                  15.07.2018 | 19:39

                  Like

                2. It is surprising they do not get on better with Navalny, as they are like peas in a pod – both are sufficiently unpopular that they have to gate-crash established events to make it all about them, and get attention.

                  Like

                3. And part of the team was Tolokonnikova’s husband, Pyotr Verzilov:

                  He’s put on some weight since he last appeared arsing around in public. Must be paid well I wonder what or who exactly is his source of income?

                  He was arrested together with a certain “model”, Veronika Nikulshina, 21, who also, allegedly is a student at the prestigious Plekhanov Institute of Economics:

                  Amongst their demands published on the Internet were ‘to release all political prisoners’ and ‘stop illegal arrests at rallies’. They also called for an end to fabricating criminal cases and jailing protesters.

                  Like

                4. How the heck did a pussy riot stunt woman get through security? I presume, without evidence, that a Western media outlet or NGO provided cover.

                  Like

                5. And in the Western press, they say the pitch “invasion” was a great embarasment to Putin on his big day.

                  I don’t think so, really.

                  On the other hand, the “Pussy Riot” so-called performance artists just displayed to the world once again what a heap of juvenile shite they are.

                  Like

                6. The PR stunt, like all of the criticism of Russia before and during the World Cup, will be taken by most as sour grapes – you don’t, I repeat. don’t question the integrity or beauty of the World Cup. Idiots, all.

                  Like

              1. I think the gentleman in question is the head of FIFA. Putin seemed more enthused in presenting medals to the French than the Croatians but I suppose enthusiasm is reserved for the winner.

                Looks like quite a rain storm on the field but apparently the fans are under a roof – very thoughtful.

                Some Romanian friends who are Russiaphiles were cheering for Croatia because they are Slavic – just like Russians in their minds. I, of course, was happy to see the French win the cup.

                Liked by 1 person

                1. A little cow-like but OK. Bu what is in her heart? I don’t want to know.

                  Will the MSM protest that picture as they did with Putin enjoying the outdoors without a shirt?

                  Like

                2. Cow-like!

                  How ungentlemanly of you, sir!

                  I can think of udder reasons why some men might find her attractive.

                  she may be a wonderful conversationalist, for example, or a terrific cook.

                  Like

                3. Jen- thanks. Better to have no doubts. Pro-Ustashe – amazing. I hope that Serbia can recovery its history from the hands of the West. Russia owes it to Serbia to help and it will do the needful thing when the time is right.

                  Like

  29. Fox News sports commentators confirm that the Russian World Cup was the best ever in World Cup history during today’s final coverage.

    Many of us doubted the wisdom in Russia hosting the World Cup given the Western intentions to see it as a failure; a showcase of Russian backwardness, crumbling infrastructure, xenophobia and racism. The West certainly tried to sell that message but utterly failed in the face of Russian reality.

    Hindsight is 20/20 or better. It certainly appears to have been worth it. Russia’s confidence and competence shown in Sochi, Syria and now the World Cup has done enormous good for Russian in the international realm not to mention what it must have done for the Russian population. I have learned not to doubt Putin or the Russian government in such matters.

    Like

    1. https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/columnist/martin-rogers/2018/07/15/world-cup-why-russia-staged-best-tournament-history/786251002/

      These MSM clowns have no choice. They have to go with the flow to retain any credibility. But they can still do their full time jobs of smearing Russia by lying about Sochi:

      1) Sochi cost $9.5 billion. Not $55 billion which includes all the massive infrastructure projects to open up the “Russian Riviera” on the Black Sea. The London Olympics cost 9 billion pounds which is about $15 billion US. There was no massive infrastructure investment associated with it.

      2) Doping claims are being proved to be nothing more than libel. Russian athletes who were stripped of their medals are having them returned.

      Like

    2. Like

      1. You can bet that the MSM and the associated comedy/analysts will jump on Trump for saying something nice about Putin and Russia before the summit. Why, he is virtually surrendering to the evil tyrant!

        Like

        1. It was a coded message. NSA analysts have already broken it down, and have determined that it read, “Thanks, Vova, for your help in 2016. The money will arrive by the usual route. May I count on you again in 2020?”

          Like

      2. They didn’t really play an extraordinary game of football. Even I as a rugby fan could see that.

        There was a good part of the game when the Croats looked the better side, I think.

        My kids were chuffed to death that France won, though, as was my wife.

        They are all Francophiles. They liked the place when I took them there in 2012.

        I suppose it’s alright.

        In my opinion, Russians in general like Frogs.

        Don’t eat them though.

        They always get at me about France, saying I don’t like the French because England was at war with France for 100 years.

        They were rather vague, as most people are, about that little altercation between Anglo-Norman monarchs and various persons who claimed to be King of France.

        “Who started it?” they asked me this evening at half-time.

        “The English, of course”, I said.

        “Who won?”

        “The Frogs.”

        “See! That’s why you hate the French!!!!”

        “No I don’t!”

        “Yes you do! They beat you, so you don’t like them!”

        “I don’t give a bugger about them finally clearing the English out of France! It was about 600 years ago when they finally managed to do it…”

        Mocking silence and smart-arse looks off them.

        Bloody Russians ganging up on me!

        “Took them 100 bloody years to do so, mind….” I added.

        Like

        1. It’s normal for a Russian to be a Francophile. I mean, it’s not even possible to read “War and Peace” in full unless one can read French as well as Russian!

          Like

          1. I used to cod Russians about my knowing Russian lines of “War and Peace” off by heart. So they used to say, “Ok, let’s hear you!”

            And I’d say, very well. “War and Peace”, first sentence: “Eh bien, mon prince”.

            I really have memorized the first line of my favourite Tolstoy work though:

            Все счастливые семьи похожи друг на друга, каждая несчастливая семья несчастлива по-своему.

            This mocking of what my family perceives as Francophobia began years ago when my wife was going on about Victor Higo and Alexandre Dumas. I told her I had never read any of their works. She was gobsmacked. “You’ve never read “Notre Dame de Paris”, “Les Miserables”?

            “Nope!”

            “But you must have read ‘The Three Musketeers’?”

            “Never!”

            And since that day she has considered me to be an undecated lout and a Francophobe to boot.

            She is wrong on two counts.

            I must say, though, that every Russian whom I have been acquainted with has been very well read as regards French literature.

            Mrs. Exile quite often expresses her astonishment over the fact that I have never read “The Three Musketeers” and teases me about this by saying that I haven’t read it because in the story, the English are the baddies.

            I once got fed up over this and said to her: “Well if you are so smart, tell me why the book is called ‘The Three Musketeers”, because none of them carries a musket: they are always fucking around with swords.”

            She couldn’t tell me. Nobody can. Not even a Frog, whom I once posed the same question to.

            Like

            1. The King’s Musketeers was the title of their company, and indeed the musket was their designated mid-range weapon. But a movie about people firing muskets at one another from around 100 yards would be pretty boring – close-up swordplay is where it’s at for action movies, and the sword is the military gentleman’s weapon. Most of the situations in which the Musketeers decided they were going to fight were as they developed, and therefore at such close quarters that a musket would be impractical – those were for marching onto the field of battle as a company, against an enemy likewise-arranged and drawn up, and blasting away at one another until one side or the other decided the conditions were right for a charge.

              Like

            2. Your wife is right, though.
              If you have not read “Les Misérables” then you are not well-read!
              I’m sorry, but that is simply a true statement.
              “Les Miz” is sort of a hub of European literature, and I am not referring to the Broadway play!
              Please excuse my snobbery, but this is a hard point.

              Like

              1. I prefer Zola to Hugo, “Germinal” in particular.

                Etienne Lantier was my role model, sort of …

                🙂

                When I was a horny-handed son of toil, I used to stick out in a crowd, not least because of my physical size, but because of my full-set that I had cultivated, similar to that bloke’s pictured above in the Borinage, Belgium. It was so full that my workmates often referred to me as Karl Marx, as later did the cops during the strike of 1984-1985.

                However, I had not ceased shaving because of any admiration that I had for Marx, but simply because one morning at around 5 a.m., before setting off for the pit to do my stint on day-shift, I suddenly thought: “What the fuck am I having a shave for? I’m not going to an office: I’m going to get covered in shit soon!”. So I put down the razor and that was that.

                I trimmed the beard right down after I had been given the bum’s rush from the British deep mining industry — even ended up looking like Walter White for a spell. Back to a trimmed full-set now, which Mrs. Exile hates because I’m now completely grey and she says it makes me lok old.

                I just tell her I look old because I am bloody old!

                Like

  30. I only wish that some French player shout out “Slava Rossii!” It would be in order, unlike that which that Croat cnut did, as the Ukraine has taken no part in this competition, whereas such a call of glory to Russia could be looked upon as a vote of thanks to Russia for running a wonderful competition.

    Like

    1. The French did show real class in taking their foot off the gas in the final quarter of the match. Both Griezmann (my vote for the team’s real star turn and player of the tournament) and Pogba resisted the temptation to stick the boot in and make a humiliating scoreline.
      And what a way to commit corporate suicide! Way hey, Pussy Riot! Break up a very promising Croatia attack just when they looked like pegging their opponents back even further. Way to go! I hope the Croatians have a security service with the patience to strike at these attention seekers when it’ll inconvenience their lives most.

      Like

  31. So the blonde sitting next to Macron was the Croatia Pres.
    Cute! 😊 The Fox people kept
    Yapping about how a thunderstorm
    Might stop the game. LOL!

    Like

    1. No chance!

      It’s been rumbling away all day here, but as I said, no rain over our precinct this evening.

      We need a good storm, though: very muggy now.

      Putin wasn’t fazed either by heavy rain last year when he refused to have an umbrella held above him when he was laying a wreath at the Eternal Flame to celebrate the 50th anniversary of its construction:

      Like

          1. Yes, Macron is such a giant of a man. In the hilarious cartoon he is portrayed as soaring over his bubblicious Croatian counterpart, but in reality she is taller by about .5 cm (173 to 172.2). Both are only slightly taller than Putin, at 169 cm. But liberal fun is so mature and dignified – what’s next, fart jokes?

            Like

  32. Interesting comment on Yahoo regarding showing the PR stunt. Per the comment, policy is not to show the faces/closeups to deny them the publicity that they seek. Apparently not so with PR.

    Like

  33. The Ustasha lost, and the Frog lowlives are rewarded for their victory with a fresh wave of riots.
    Not a bad result.

    Like

  34. And so the Western media has got hold of a video of the police questioning the Pussy Riot crew that ran onto the pitch, which video is now doing the rounds on the net and causing kreakles to wail about the infamy of the regime.

    Quoting what a cops said to the arrested “Pussy Riot” members, the Western presstitutes are now gleefully attacking the post-FIFA World Cup Putin tyranny.

    That loathsome UK rag the Daily Mail already already had the story up before I went to bed at midnight last night.

    But first, lets have a big round of applause for the arrested victims of the regime:


    Muscovite Olga Pakhtusova, born in 1992


    A smirking Verzilov and associate Veronika Nikulshina, born 1997


    Nikulshina

    No modeling jobs for you for a while, kid, because you are now in deep shit — I hope!

    Enjoy your coming stay in a “colony”.

    Perhaps the Plekhanov Institute will allow you to continue your studies. I’m sure it will, actually, rat’s nest of libtards that it is.

    My source, MK, only describes Nikulshina as “living in the Moscow region” and says nothing about Verzilov’s address.

    I often wonder what Verzilov claims to be: Canadian or Russian or both? Where does he live? What’s his source of income?

    I suspect he just pimps off his wife, if she is his wife. I seldom see photos of them together. In fact, the last photograph I saw of him with her was one of him shagging her in a zoological museum with a gang of other performance artistes similarly engaged.

    «Жалею, что сейчас не 37-й год». В сеть попало видео допроса участников Pussy Riot после акции на футбольном поле
    16.07.2018, 08:36

    “I’m sorry it isn’t 1937 now.” The network has got a video of the questioning of Pussy Riot members after their action on the football pitch

    Moscow police have made two charges concerning the violation of two articles of administrative law as regards the running onto the pitch by Pussy Riot members during the 2018 World Cup final match between France and Croatia, TASS has reported today, July 16, with reference to the press-service of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Moscow.

    “Concerning those citizens who ran out onto the Luzhniki Stadium pitch, charges have been made as regards violations of administrative law as stated in articles 203 of the Code of Administrative Offences of the Russian Federation (Violation of the rules of behaviour of spectators during official sports competitions) and 17.12 (Illegal wearing of uniforms with insignia, symbols of state paramilitary organizations, law enforcement or controlling bodies)”, a news agency source has specified.

    On the net there has appeared a video of the questioning of the offenders, which shows a young man (presumably the activist Pyotr Verzilov) and a girl in police uniform. A raised voice can be heard questioning those who took part in the action. As can be seen in the video (it lasts a little more than a minute), Russia shall now be forced to pay the FIFA a fine because of these young persons’ antics. The news agency “Free News” has made a transcript of the conversation.

    Voice: Handcuffs! Bring me handcuffs for these two! You, you creature, who are you? Surname, name, patronymic. (No reply heard) What did you decide to shit on Russia for?
    Verzilov: No we didn’t. We are for Russia. We are for Russia.
    Voice: Don’t you know that penalties will now have to paid by Russia to FIFA?
    Verzilov: Why?
    Voice: For being wankers!
    Verzilov: We are for Russia. In the same way as you are, if you are for Russia too.
    Voice: You set things up so that Russia will be penalized.
    Verzilov: We did not set Russia up. That’s not true.
    Voice: Are You normal?
    Verzilov: Normal.
    Voice: Where are you form?
    Verzilov: I’m for hire.
    Voice For hire? I’m sometimes sorry it isn’t 1937 now (inaudible). You’ve really shat all over Russia, haven’t you?
    Verzilov: No, we haven’t shat all over Russia. We have no such goal. On the contrary, we are for Russia. Also, if you are for Russia as well …

    According to the young people, they organized the “Action of coming onto the pitch called ‘A policeman enters the game'” to protest against unlawful arrests at demonstrations and so as to show support for political prisoners”, says the publication Eg.ru.

    Yesterday, early in the second half, four people were promptly removed from the pitch by law enforcement officers. Nevertheless, the game had to be stopped by referees and linesmen for two minutes. Pussy Riot said that the violators of public order were members of their group.

    Like

    1. The video referred to above and which is now doing the rounds, to the great glee of Western media and Russian kreakles:

      Note: this video was released by an organization that calls itself “Police Ombudsman”.

      So someone in the stadium police station was allowed to film the proceedings.

      Meanwhile, the fighters for freedom and democracy in both Russia and the West are going great guns over the desk sergeant’s regretting that it is not 1937, for is this not proof positive that Putin and his minions revere Stalin and the USSR.

      The wailing kreakly here here are also angry over the fact that the cop called that stupid cnut of a model/student a тварь — a creature/beast.

      Like

        1. Nikulshina will no doubt have no memories whatsoever of the ’90s.

          Pakhtusova was 8 when Yeltsin was given the push.

          Verzilov was born in 1987.

          He lived in Canada from 1999 to 2003 before returning to Mordor.

          He’ll remember what a shithole 1990s Russia was: he was 12 when he left for Toronto.

          So why did he come back after Yeltsin was ousted and when Putin had been president for 3 years?

          Under orders?

          Like

    2. ERROR

      The cop did not ask where Verzilov was from, but where he got the uniform from, hence Verzilov’s answer “Hired”.

      I thought the transcript translation read strangely: the spellchecker must have changed “form” [“uniform” in Russian] to “from”.

      Like

    3. All that will survive of the interview will be the policeman’s statement, “I’m sometimes sorry it isn’t 1937 now”. This will be interpreted, of course, as a broad Russian yearning for a return to Soviet times and the Gulags and the ability to crush freedom at a whim. I really wish he had not said that, because it will become a rallying-cry for the liberals and their foreign backers. And that fucking Verzilov! Will someone not put him away forever, the fucking degenerate? It drives me crazy that he be held up as a symbol of freedom and nobility when he is the very embodiment of narcissism and vanity and attention-seeking. You would not see him credited with heroism if he ran through the middle of NASCAR, I can promise you, or disrupted a convention of the NRA. And they are likely to receive much-diminished sympathy in Europe, as well, except for the approbation of politicians. This is no longer disrupting a Russia-only event in order to get attention. But the USA, not being big on soccer and not really getting the impact of dicking with the World Cup, will laud their courage and shout that they must be immediately released, if not given places in the government.

      Like

      1. Found the 4th one! It’s that pink-haired woman on the video they released when the event was taking place.

        The arrested “performance artists” are:

        Kuracheva Olga, (above), Pakhtusova Olga, Nikulshina Veronika and Verzilov Pyotr.

        Interfax reports that all 4 have now received maximum punishment.

        “Found guilty in committing offences under part 3 of article 20.31 of the administrative code (Gross violation of rules of conduct spectators when conducting official sports competitions, if these actions do not contain penal act) and to appoint punishment in the form of administrative arrest for 15 days.”

        In addition, all four prohibited for three years to visit the official sport events in Russia.

        Thus, all four members of Pussy Riot received the maximum punishment under this article.

        Their lawyer Nikolai Vasilev said that the sentence was too harsh and he intends to challenge it in Moscow city court.

        Where was Faigin when he was needed?

        Bloody typical!

        If he’d been their council, they’d all have got 2 years in the slammer at the very least.

        As regards the cop at the stadium regretting that it wasn’t 1937, he was only thinking of the non-punishment these narcissists were due to receive.

        And now that cop’s opinion is now grist to the libtards’ mill.

        However, when I was much younger, I well remember when there were outbreaks of violent hooliganism and there were cries of “bring back the birch” of members of the general public and some chief constables as well.

        The birch for young offenders was still in use in the isle of Man right up to 1976. I wasn’t a kid then, so they couldn’t birch me. I used to go to the island, though, on piss ups. Never got birched.

        The big attraction of the island for young lads from the mainland — England and Scotland and Wales to the east of the island (my part of England as well) and Ireland to the west many — was that the pubs were open nearly all day, unlike in the UK, where there were strict licensing hours.

        In the UK, you had to stop drinking at 22:30 on weekdays and Sundays and at 23:00 on Saturdays. During the day, the pubs were open on weekdays from 11:00 until 15:30 where I lived. They only opened for the evening at 17:00 Monday-Saturday, and at 19:00 on Sundays. Also, on Sundays they were only open during the daytime from 12:00 until 14:00.

        So the Isle of Mann was paradise for boozers. And when you got young lads from the industrial towns and cities of Northern England and Scotland carousing on Mann in the summer, sometimes there was trouble. Result: birching.

        They did it at the police station — on your bare arse. They used a an A-frame — Nelson’s navy kind of thing.

        Daily Record, Glasgow, UK, 20 July 1965

        Teenagers in holiday row
        Birch Them! Sentence on Four Scots
        By Bill Robertson

        (extract)
        FOUR 19-year-old Glasgow youths were yesterday BIRCHED on the orders of an Isle of Man magistrate.

        The four, all on holiday at Douglas, were each given nine strokes on their bare buttocks.

        The “sentence” followed a promenade battle in which bottles and a deck-chair were used as weapons. Three other holidaymakers were hurt, the jaw of one was broken.

        ‘Inhuman’
        Last night the magistrate who ordered the birching, burly, grey-haired Mr Tom Radcliffe, said:

        “The birch may be called medieval, inhuman — even sadistic. All I know is — IT WORKS.”

        Mr Radcliffe, the chief magistrate at Douglas, was home for tea after his latest session on the bench. Back in the town’s police cells, a police officer — watched by a doctor — was wielding the birch.

        The holiday isle, with 25,000 Glasgow Fair folks on its beaches, is the only place in Britain where the birch is still used.

        Mr Radcliffe went on: “The birch is used only in bad cases involving personal injury to innocent people.

        “For the young hooligans who hit people with bottles. The types who kick people when they are down.

        “It may be a bit non-British. But quite frankly I find the birch a very good deterrent. We are determined to stamp out holiday hooliganism.”

        Youths in the Isle of Man can receive up to 12 strokes for assault causing bodily harm. It covers offenders in the 14-21 age group.

        Fines
        The four youths who were birched yesterday are:

        James McKell, 46 Cathay Street, Milton; William Keenan, 6 Burnside Street, Cowcaddens; William Connelly, 136 West Graham Street, Garnethill, and Joseph McKay, 79 Grove Street, Cowcaddens — all Glasgow.

        They were also fined a total of £80 — McKay, Keenan and McKell, £15 each and Connelly, £35.

        All four admitted assaulting Alexander Bell, also from Glasgow, who, the court heard, had to be treated in hospital for a broken jaw and two head wounds……

        No Pussy Riot/Human Rights libtards in Merry England, Bonny Scotland and the Isle of Mann them days!


        An Isle of Mann cop happy in his work

        Like

        1. Pete the Pedo and chums could still send selfies from the paddy wagon though!

          Some tyrannical regime this is!

          A big “Hi!” to everyone from the paddy wagon in the Khamovniki Law Court courtyard. Come to the court now – try to get there for 18:00: you won’t be allowed inside after that. 🙂

          Like

          1. I see he’s still billing himself as an associate of Voina. What a prat. The sooner they take his cell phone away from him, the better, and I am sure it will be thoroughly inspected for evidence of who put him up to this stunt. Idiot.

            Like

  35. The Pussies named their outstanding performance art «Милиционер вступает в игру». Trying to decode, I did a quick google to see if that is the name of some story or film, but didn’t find anything. Pussies say they have “dedicated” their artwork to some dead kreakle named Dmitry Prigov. Never heard of him before, did a quick search of his oeuvres, also nothing with that particular title.

    As to their “motives” (in so far as insane people have motives), I wonder if this was actually some payback against France (even more so than Russia) because of their (the French) incarceration of that guy who nailed his nuts to Red Square?

    Like

    1. Read the shite they posted before performing. It’s gibberish. It’s about a “heavenly policeman” and god-knows-what pseudo-philosophical babble.

      I gave up trying to translate it.

      I wonder why they used the Soviet term Милиционер, though?

      Another thing: that TASS video transcript of the cop bollocking them in the stadium police station has [inaudible] in two places: the first “inaudible” appears after he says to her (standard procedure) “Family name, name, patronymic!” It’s not “inaudible: she just plays stumm, refuses to answer, which pleases me no end, because in doing so, she is simply digging a deeper hole for herself at some “colony”.

      The other “inaudible” appears after he has given an echo-question to Verzilov, namely “For hire???” after the latter, in reply to being asked where he is from, says “I’m for hire”.

      Pyotr says bugger all in reply.

      Indeed, it intrigues me where Verzilov (aka Porky Pete, Pete the Pedo) really is from.

      He has stated himself that while at school in Toronto, he became the bane of the local cops. He presents himself as having been a schoolboy-revolutionary and hooligan.

      Then the next thing you hear is he’s studying philosophy — MGU!!!!

      He certainly did. And he was out out on his ear at short notice. What I’ve read about his “student” days” here is that he did sweet FA at MGU, apart from humping Tolokonnikova, that is.

      So how come a Toronto schoolboy revolutionary cum hooligan ends up studying philosophy at MGU?

      Like

              1. For example:

                In soviet Russia, law breaks you!

                Message through a time warp?

                My congratulations to these brave people because it was very risky what they did

                I’m proud of their braveness and courage.. With love from Australia

                And on and on …

                But what is this I see…?

                What a beautiful world cup up until that point, really embarrassing act, you 3 looked so stupid

                Which prompted these replies:

                so are you

                Voina’ and ‘Pussy Riot’ – they are really stupid. They did group sex in the museum, inserted chicken in their vaginas and make punk concert in the church. And other stupid actions.

                Like

          1. The art group explained that in this way the memory of “the great Russian poet Dmitri Prigov” was honoured. Dmitry Prigov (died 16 July, 2007) was one of the founders of Moscow conceptualism and created in particular a cycle of poems dedicated to a “Militsioner” [Soviet term for a “policeman” in the the Soviet police force known as the “Militia”, which terms were in use until 2010, when “policeman” and the “police” were brought back into use — ME] a deliberately positive-minded law enforcement officer. The “Heavenly Militsioner”, according to Prigov, used his walkie-talkie radio to communicated with God himself, whereas a terrestrial Militsioner fabricates criminal cases…

            On condition of anonymity, friends of the detainees have disclosed details of the action to Kommersant. According to them, the invasion of the pitch had been under preparation for about a week. “They had to get a football fan’s passport in order to get into the stadium. It was assumed that there would be a toilet or utility room there, where it would be possible to get changed into police uniforms that they had brought and then get as close as possible to the edge of the pitch”, the source said. “Pyotr Verzilov had to have a regulation haircut done so as to look like a policeman, and some of the girls used wigs to cover up their brightly coloured hair.” According to them, the women had previously participated in Pussy Riot actions but had remained anonymous, as their faces had been covered by balaclava masks.

            Source: Kommersant

            Like

        1. A stream-of-consciousness flow of sewage, is what I make of it. Imprisoned for ‘likes’ and ‘reposts’? Really?? Where is that happening? Liberals are always so dramatic, always so insistent that humans must be completely free to do whatever they like, wherever they like. Considering what irritating habits some people have, and their deep desire to indulge them in public, what a blissful state that would be!

          Like

      1. ERROR

        The cop did not ask where Verzilov was from, but where he got the uniform from, hence Verzilov’s answer “Hired”.

        I thought the transcript translation read strangely: the spellchecker must have changed “form” [“uniform” in Russian] to “fom”.

        Like

  36. Here we go again!

    The British rags at their very best:

    RAIN OF TERROR World Cup 2018: Vladimir Putin has umbrella while other leaders Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic and Emmanuel Macron get soaked after win over Croatia

    World Cup officials use umbrella to shelter ONLY Putin from rainstorm – and IGNORE Macron

    Vladimir Putin criticised for being given an umbrella before Croatian president during World Cup trophy presentation

    They all got umbrellas in the end, not that they were of any use: it was bucketing down.

    The ones I felt sorry for were the Quatar Airlines stewardess at the back. They got bugger all. They were all wearing heavy make up — their bright red lipstick was clearly visible — so I was waiting for the mascara that they were also, presumably, daubed with, to start running. That would have looked ghoulish, I reckon.

    Like

    1. I read that Putin initially refused an umbrella but his staff insisted. They are scraped through the bottom of the barrel if they call this news.

      Like

    2. But of course when Putin offered his jacket to the Chinese president’s wife, that was wrong, too, and an incredible social gaffe. We must just resign ourselves that everything Putin does is wrong.

      Like

  37. What gets me is why Trump always has to have his wife tagging along?

    Is she a member of the US executive?

    If Putin were married, would he have brought his wife along?

    This First Lady crap is yet another example of US show business politics.

    Macron does the same, because he’s a prat. Merkel doesn’t bring her spouse to the show, though.

    Gorbachev started aping American showbiz style politics as well when he used to have his wife tagging along.

    Like

    1. We in the US mostly have a “two wage-earner” household – every one must work to make ends meet. So, the First Lady has to pitch in; usually with some non-controversial purpose such as better child nutrition or the like. If the First Lady sat around all day eating bonbons it would reflect poorly on the First Gentlemen and hurt his standing with the deplorables.

      Some say it is also a type of royalty where we have a First Lady to fawn over as a substitute for a queen or princess.

      Like

    2. Actually, the western media was very fond of Raisa Gorbacheva, and liked to point out how stylish and composed she always was, in a sort of eye-opener that Soviet women were not all grey and colourless, and that by implication it was her old man’s preference for western influences which had made her a more western wife. The west always gets off on a story of how people have improved themselves by mimicry of western habits.

      Like

  38. The Daily Mail remaining as classy as ever in its style of reporting:

    Trump looked determinedly at the Russian President as the pair shook hands while Putin seemed to be clinging to his chair for support.

    After Trump concluded his remarks, American reporters shouted several questions about whether he would bring up election meddling during his discussions with Putin. Trump did not respond while Putin appeared to smirk.

    Like

    1. Putin was probably terrified at being so close to Trump, who might beat him up or something if he was given any lip by the much smaller Russian president.

      Putin ‘appeared to smirk’, a characterization which western ‘journalists’ like to use to say ‘maybe nobody else caught it, but that’s the way it looked to me’.

      Like

  39. And following yesterday’s bonhomie and general backslapping, it’s back to business as usual today with the Frogs:

    France shuts Russia business office amid ‘degraded’ affairs
    July 16, 2018, 9:59 AM ED; Last Updated July 16, 2018, 9:59 AM EDT

    MOSCOWFrance has announced the closure of its office in Russia that promotes exports and investments in France.

    A statement by the French Embassy on Monday said the decision to close the Business France office in Moscow was made because “operating conditions have degraded considerably” in recent months.

    The embassy cited the director’s expulsion from Russia and the seizure of the office’s bank account.

    Business France’s director was one of four French diplomats expelled in March. The forced departures were part of Russia’s response to the expulsion of Russian diplomats by Western countries over the nerve-agent poisonings of a Russian former double agent and his daughter in England.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin said after meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron on Sunday that trade growth grew 19 between Russia and France in the first half of 2018.

    Like

    1. Big deal. I’ve never thought having a ‘business office’ in a foreign capital was that much of an incentive, and I reckon they mostly just push papers around and compile statistical reports. Industry representatives are more than capable of striking agreements between themselves, and whenever there are really big deals in the offing they are often saved until the heads of state can visit and then announce them to great fanfare, as if only their personal contribution brought them to fruition.

      Like

  40. Hey! Look at me! Look over here! Look at me!

    Me, me, me!!!!1

    Poroshenko expects “a military attack” against Ukrainian ports in the sea of Azov
    16.07.2018 15:37 GMT

    Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has said he expects “a military attack on Mariupol” and other ports, which are supposedly being prepared by Russia. He said this during a visit to the military exercises “XI Briz-2018”, said Poroshenko’s press service.

    He believes that it is not just happenchance that Russia has begun to inspect vessels in the Sea of Azov.

    “This is being done in order to block Ukrainian ports on the Sea of Azov and to escalate tension, and the possibility of a military operation, an attack against Mariupol, where ferrous metallurgical products are exported, and attacks against other Sea of Azov ports cannot be excluded”, said Poroshenko.

    He pointed out the necessity for military exercises with NATO.

    Recall, as reported by Накануне.RU, the Deputy Minister of the Ukraine for the “Occupied Territories”, Georgy Tuka, has admitted that the Ukraine is helpless against Russia on the Sea of Azov

    Poor old Porky!

    Life must be really stressful for him.

    Like

  41. Veronica Nikulshina just given 15 days and banned for 3 years from attending a sports event.

    She was found guilty of committing an administrative offence under part 3 of article 20.31 of the administrative code (gross violation of rules of conduct spectators when conducting official sports competitions that resulted in the suspension or termination of official sports competition).

    Nikulshina said she was ready to plead guilty under part 1 of article 20.31 of the administrative code (violation of rules of conduct spectators when conducting official sports competitions). Because of this bargaining, she was granted a more lenient punishment: a fine of 3 to 10 thousand rubles or compulsory work for up to 160 hours with a ban to attend sports competitions for a period of six months to three years.

    I’m sure she can afford to pay 60 quid! (5,000 rubles)

    Nikulshina said that he did not want to stop the “carnival” but only wished to protest against the detention of political prisoners in Russia.

    I wonder if she would like to name who these “political prisoners” are here in Russia? No doubt she will categorize herself thus whilst she’s doing 15 days.

    All the reports here say 4 of them ran onto the pitch but I’ve no picture of this 4th person nor a picture.

    The other 3 have not yet appeared in court.

    Like

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