Sanctimoneyous: Post-Brexit Britain Will Test-Drive a Conscience.

Uncle Volodya says, “When mores are sufficient, laws are unnecessary; when mores are insufficient, laws are unenforceable.”

“Morality is simply the attitude we adopt toward people we personally dislike.”

Oscar Wilde, from “An Ideal Husband”

“I won’t insult your intelligence by suggesting that you really believe what you just said.”

William F. Buckley Jr.

“Everybody knows that the dice are loaded,
Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed;
Everybody knows that the war is over,
Everybody knows the good guys lost:
Everybody knows the fight was fixed,
The poor stay poor, the rich get rich
That’s how it goes
Everybody knows…”

Leonard Cohen, from “Everybody Knows”

I wonder if you were as flabbergasted as I was to discover the sole reason Britain has not cracked down before now on the flood of dirty money lapping its shores is because…are you ready? Because the rest of Europe is so corrupt, Britain had to pretend to be corrupt, too, or else it might not fit in!! I’m not even kidding; read it for yourself.

“Brexit will free the UK to intensify its crackdown on dirty money sloshing through the City of London because the authorities will no longer have to win the approval of the rest of the EU.”

The article is The Telegraph’s ‘Premium content’, and so you can’t see the rest of it without being a subscriber – but for my part, I’ve seen enough. If that isn’t the most goodie-goodie, self-serving teacher’s-pet bullshit I’ve ever heard, it would certainly be in the top five.

As I’ve queried elsewhere, if the rest of Europe is perfectly happy rooting in its corrupt sty, while Britain holds its nose and plays at being the bad-ass so that the European hoodlums will accept it, what draws foreign robber-barons to London with cash that they need laundered? Why don’t they just go to Paris or Berlin? Can they not sense how uncomfortable Britain is with money that was not honestly earned by the sweat of one’s brow? Dear God, it makes me want to scream.

Let’s just dispense with the notion that Honest-John Bull yearns to boot out the rotten Russian oligarchs because of a deep-seated aversion to dirty money, right now. In fact, Uncle Sam told Britain back in the spring that it was going to have to cut the Russian oligarchs loose if it wants to have continued access to the US market. And considering the arsehole Britain is making of itself in Europe, it doesn’t actually have a lot of other friends. What would happen to Britain without the coziness of the Special Friendship? Like The Eagles sang in “Already Gone”, it would have to eat its lunch all by itself.

“Sigal P. Mandelker, a top American Treasury official in London to meet with her counterparts, said British banks could face “consequences” if they continued to carry out significant transactions on behalf of the 24 influential Russians sanctioned by Washington on Friday. The list includes the industrialists Oleg Deripaska and Viktor Vekselberg, along with Kirill Shamalov, who American officials have identified as President Vladimir V. Putin’s son-in-law.”

So I guess if Britain is going to have to bury its face in the pillow while Uncle Sam rides it from behind like a pile-driver, it might as well amuse itself – and everyone else – with the notion that showing the Russian rich the door to the cold outside was all its own idea. Yes; ‘course it was!

The welcome mat is still emphatically out for guys like Len Blavatnik, though, the richest man in Britain, with an estimated fortune of £15 billion. Because he’s from Odessa originally, and the last time I looked, that was in Ukraine. Even when it was prodding Britain to impose sanctions against certain Ukrainian oligarchs (never Poroshenko, of course, who is a ‘tycoon’, which is a different thing altogether), the USA made it clear that sanctioning Ukrainians was meant to pressure them to break with Viktor Yanukovich, not to punish them. Mr. Blavatnik had a spot of bother when he was accused of working through his connections with TNK-BP oil company in Russia to drive westerners – including Britons – out of Russia in a dispute between TNK-BP and BP. You would think critics’ attitude was a bit churlish, considering Mr. Blavatnik had just donated £75 million to Oxford University, the largest single donation in its history and one recognized publicly by the British Prime Minister. But Mr. Blavatnik knows how to spread money around; he is a patron not only of Oxford, but of the British Museum, the Tate Modern, the Royal Opera House, the National Portrait Gallery and the Museum of Modern Art. He is a personal friend of Benjamin Netanyahu, and a generous supporter of both US political parties, although he leans heavily Republican. He could show up at a Royal Opera House performance of Anna Karenina with a human head in his lap and nobody would give it a second look.

Good thing they did not investigate far enough back to learn that Mr. Blavatnik outmaneuvered BP in an almost-identical riposte back in the late 90’s…except then he did it with the help of his Washington advisers.

Moreover, to secure the credit guarantees, Blavatnik and his Washington advisers have so far outmaneuvered a Goliath: BP-Amoco. The largest producer of oil and gas in the United States, the British-American giant is fighting to keep its interest in another rich Siberian field also coveted by Tyumen Oil. BP-Amoco contends that Tyumen’s takeover tactics there are unfair and could jeopardize its $571 million investment, one of the largest by a western company in Russia.

Well, enough of that; we’re not really here to talk about Mr. Blavatnik and his squeaky-clean money – we’re here to talk about the patently ridiculous announcement that Britain has an aversion to ‘dirty money’, and would have been much more a scourge of fiscal dishonesty if it had not been held back by its corrupt European partners.

The well-established facts suggest that Britain…how can I put this? A nice way to not be deliberately insulting would be to say that London’s financial centers do not discriminate against money based on its origins; there is no such thing as dirty money, or clean money, there is just money; how’s that? Or, to put it as the man who blew the whistle on the Naples crime syndicate, the Camorra – Robert Saviano – did back in 2016, “the UK is the most corrupt place on earth“. Not a lot of gray area there, I think you’ll agree.

“It’s not the bureaucracy, it’s not the police, it’s not the politics but what is corrupt is the financial capital.”

His assessment was backed by Transparency International, the outfit the UK worships whenever it is ripping on Russia for being an authoritarian hellhole ruled by an imp of Satan. The agency’s own UK head of advocacy and research had no argument with the allegation.

“It’s absolutely true that the UK is one of the leading financial centres for the laundering of corrupt money from overseas, whether through the property market, luxury goods or other sectors…The UK has been a prime location for stashing away illicitly gained wealth, as anti-money laundering systems are weak and sectors such as UK property represent a safe investment, as well as a place to hide corrupt money.”

All, all because the other European nations were mocking Britain for not being sufficiently corrupt, of course – what’s a country to do when its conscience says, “This is so wrong”, while the rest of the gang chants, “Scrub!! Scrub!! Launder that dirty money and pocket usurious profits, or you can’t be in the club!!” As if.

Oh, but wait! We don’t have complete agreement. The British Home Office – a term that, for me, always conjures an image of a crackling fire in a cozy fireplace, perhaps with a dog snoozing on the rug – said only this year that it was so darned proud that none other than, yes, Transparency International had ranked the UK the 8th least-corrupt country in the world!

How can those two realities co-exist?

Obviously, they cannot. I suggest the conundrum offers at least two considerations; one, the British Home Office has an obvious interest in refuting any talk about the UK being a festering swamp of corruption. Two, Transparency International cannot be relied upon to supply unbiased assessments so long as it is funded by, among others, the European Commission and the UK’s own Department of International Development. So you can consider their evaluations with the same gravitas you might accord a similar opinion expressed by the paper boy, or whoever cuts your hair – interesting, but not necessarily informed, and quite possibly influenced.

I’m sure most or all of you remember the “Panama Papers”; those who obtained the files gloated that the information revealed was going to be curtains for Putin, as it exposed his nefarious financial dealings that made him the richest person on earth. That turned out to be horseshit, as we have learned to expect – not because Putin would never do anything bad, but because of the ideological nutjobbery of those who make such promises, as if wishing really hard would make it true. Putin himself was not mentioned anywhere in the millions of documents, and attempts to link him to a few Russian accounts that were said to be those of ‘Putin’s cronies’ got no traction whatsoever.

However, the Mossack-Fonseca law firm’s stolen files did reveal some astonishing British connections, not least of which was the then-Prime-Minister of the UK’s father, who used an offshore account to evade British taxes. How do you guys feel about paying into his old-age pension now? But that was just a relatively-amusing diversion. This was the real money shot:

The Panama Papers leak – with 11.5 million documents the the largest leak in history so far – has implicated many of Britain’s biggest banks as well. HSBC, Coutts, and Rothschild were among the banks mentioned in the papers. Since the 1970s the Mossack Fonseca law firm set up over 3000 shell companies for the aforementioned banks. These shell companies allowed their clients to evade taxes, as well as allowing them to participate in criminal or corrupt activities.

Over 3000 shell companies set up, since the 1970’s, to allow HSBC, Coutts, and Rothschild – among others – to evade taxes and to engage in criminal or corrupt activities. Like money-laundering. Since the 1970’s, which mathematics bids me point out was at least 39 years ago. Kind of a long time to be striving for acceptance into the Corruption Club, don’t you think – what does a country have to do these days to receive its due acclaim?

Look; I don’t know who Britain thinks it’s fooling with that butter-wouldn’t-melt-in-my-mouth wide-eyed innocence. But chances are good that it is not the US Department of State from whom Britain takes its orders, couched as ‘helpful suggestions’. The hash the British government is making of Brexit, coupled with the US State Department’s focus on squeezing only Russian oligarchs out of the money trough, virtually guarantees the whole effort will rebound on Britain in the worst kind of consequences.

Meanwhile, the fatuous premise that Britain was only pretending to walk the walk so that the mean kids in the gang wouldn’t beat it up for its lunch money is somewhere south of insulting.







595 thoughts on “Sanctimoneyous: Post-Brexit Britain Will Test-Drive a Conscience.

  1. Euractiv + Neuters: US warns Hungary and neighbours against Turkish Stream

    The US has repeatedly taken position against Nord Stream 2, a Russia-sponsored pipeline planned to bring gas to Germany under the Baltic Sea. But this time Washington warned against another such pipeline, bringing Russian gas under the Black Sea.


    US Energy Secretary Richard ‘Dick’ Perry. It’s a nice choice of picture for the article because it looks like Orban is laughing at him. You have to wonder what InSultin’ Erd O’Grand thinks of such behavior. Clearly no-one in the US cares so it looks like the usual whining.


    1. These American fucktards actually think they can replace Russian gas supply to the EU. With what you utter void heads? America had a net export capacity of 5 bcm in 2017 because it imported about 87 bcm from Canada. When you fuckwad, douchebags get 150 bcm export capacity, then start yapping. Until then, STFU.

      Of course, it is clear to anyone with a functional brain that the US is totally dishonest on claiming to want to supply the EU. In fact, it wants to saddle the EU with onerous LNG contracts to third parties (e.g. Qatar) who can currently and for the near term supply the volumes of LNG needed. At the same time the US damages the Asian tigers by increasing LNG prices.

      It is time for all the US bootlicks (Japan, the EU) to tell Uncle Scumbag to shove himself in his own ass. The US is not even pretending to treat these countries with respect.


  2. Residents of Cherkasy, Dnipropetrovsk and Khmelnytsky regions hold a picket near the building of the Cabinet of Ministers in Kiev with the requirement to turn on the heating in cities across the country.

    And in Kiev, the city centre has been closed off so as to prevent protests being carried out by Banderastan citizens against there being no heating in their apartments.

    Freedom to protest, Volker?

    Am I sniggering at their misfortune?

    Damned right I am!

    You know what you can do to keep warm, Yukies? F*cking well jump up and down in the streets, just like you did a few years ago whilst shouting “Moskali to the knife!”

    Right! I’ll just go and open the fortochka: too bloody warm in here.

    See: «Масштабный инфраструктурный кризис»: жители Украины протестуют из-за отсутствия отопления


    1. People in the pic are holding a sign that reads “The residents of Smela paid (their utility fees) for the heat, now give us heat.” I made the same point in my blogpost today , that we are not talking about deadbeats here! These people paid their utility fees, and the gas is still there, in the tanks. The problem is that the regional gas companies are bankrupt, so Naftogaz switched off the valves.


  3. And now the time is ripe to tighten the screw on the Banderaretard thieving bastards!

    Russia has filed an appeal in the UK Supreme Court against the decision of the Court of Appeal of England as regards the Ukraine sovereign debt to Russia of $3 billion.

    In September the court of Appeal of England decided to hold a separate hearing for the analysis of one of the four arguments made by the Ukraine as regards its $3 billion debt to Russia. The Ukraine argues that Eurobonds to the value of $3 billion were issued in favour of Russia under “improper pressure”. The other three arguments made by the Ukrainian side were rejected.

    “According to the Russian Ministry of Finance, the fourth argument made by the Ukraine should also be dismissed without trial, as were the other three grounds,” says an MoF message.

    After having heard the appeal on the part of Russia, the decision of the Supreme Court will be final. If it finds for Russia, then the Ukraine will lose the opportunity to appeal. The appeal will take place no earlier than July 2019.

    See: Минфин оспорил решение английского суда по долгу Украины на $3 млрд

    The Gasprom appeal at the Swedish arbitration court over non-payment of Ukrainian debts was turned down because if the appeal had been granted, Bannderastan would have had to default.

    Will the Supreme court of England do the same, and in doing so, make a mockery of the terms of the contract by which the Eurobonds had been issued? Russia specifically chose London for the issue of the bonds because London is respected world wide as regards such matters — or so they say: my word is my bond etc.

    So if Russia wins the appeal, the Ukraine will be bankrupted — not that it hasn’t been so for a long time already. But as Shylock said:

    “The pound of flesh which I demand of him
    Is dearly bought; ’tis mine, and I will have it.”

    Cut deep, Russia! Cut deep! Make the bastards squeal like stuck pigs!



    Flight to Mars on nuclear-powered spacecraft

    According to the head of the heads the Keldysh Research Center, which now runs the project to build Russia’s first nuclear propulsion engine, current rocket engines, powered either by various types of chemical propellants or by low-power electric engines fed by solar batteries, are not suitable for long space flights.

    “A person should not spend more than a year or two in space. Nuclear-powered spacecraft will allow a relatively fast journey, and, most importantly, a return flight. This technology has special significance for interplanetary flights and research of far planets,” Koshlakov said.

    Speaking about a flight to Mars with the use of a nuclear propulsion engine, the official said the project is technically feasible in the near future.

    According to him, a journey to Mars on board such a spacecraft will take about seven months.

    “[The journey] to the Moon will last several days, yes, while a flight to Mars will last about seven or eight months,” he said in an interview with Russia’s government daily, Rossiiskaya Gazeta.

    Koshlakov said the first ground trials of the engine’s cooling system were successful.

    Earlier, Russian space agency Roscosmos unveiled plans for making a test sample of a megawatt class nuclear engine meant for flights into deep space.

    On Tuesday, Roscosmos has uploaded to its Facebook page a video showing the image of a nuclear-powered spacecraft of the future. At present, the Keldysh Center is conducting research into spacecraft boasting more powerful engines – nuclear power plants of a new class, which do not need solar light or solar cell panels.

    In 1970-1988 the Soviet Union launched into space 32 spacecraft with thermoelectric nuclear power reactors. In 1960-1980 a nuclear rocket engine was developed and tested at the Semipalatinsk test site.”


    Mars is 6 months away on closest approach to the Earth via conventional inertial guidance. At its farthest, it would take over 2 years to get to Mars.

    So Koshlakov is either talking about 2 years being cut down to 7 months or is confusing something. A nuclear engine allows for continuous acceleration and is thus superior to inertial flight where all the boost is expended at the beginning.

    Anyway, Russia is the only country on Earth that is developing next generation space flight technology. The self-anointed masters of the human intellect in the west are too busy wallowing in propaganda.


    1. Say, speaking of aircraft engines, a little bird (all right, a newspaper) told me that GE is urgently trying to offload assets in order to reduce its runaway debt problems, and may even sell its avionics section, which is rated as its ‘crown jewel’.

      “Last month, GE posted a quarterly loss of $22.8 billion, cut its annual dividend to just 4 cents a share and told investors it was facing a deepening federal accounting probe. The power unit lost $631 million in the quarter and GE wrote down $22 billion in goodwill because expected future profits in the unit now appear unlikely.

      Since then, some analysts have questioned GE’s liquidity and slashed their target prices for the stock. Culp said he thought the power business was “getting close” to bottoming out after more than a year of declining revenue and profit.”


      1. Perhaps I should have included the translated text under the video- here it is:
        “The new engine for the Su-57 fighter surpasses its foreign counterparts, will significantly expand its capabilities and belongs to the 5+ generation.

        The engine of the second stage for the fifth-generation fighter Su-57 exceeds the existing analogues in the world by its specific gravity. About this in the new release of the program “Military acceptance” to the film crew of the TV channel “Zvezda” said the General Designer-Director “OKB im. A.M. Cradles “Yevgeny Marchukov.

        “I would say that this generation 5+ is a little ahead of the fifth. It is to this generation that the engine corresponds to specific gravity, specific consumption and specific gravity, ”Marchukov said.

        Marchukov noted that the engine surpasses all foreign analogues in terms of specific gravity, is a completely new product and has nothing to do with the engine of the Su-35 fighter.

        At the moment, the Su-57 fighter is being tested, and in the future it will be supplied to the troops with the AL-41F1 engine, which is also used on the Su-35 fighter jets .”

        As you can see talk of “5+ generation” seems pretty positive. Clearly Russia has built up some excellent schools of engineering after they collapsed during the 1990’s. Andrei Martyanov, at
        continually harps that the US “system” undervalues its high tech aeronautical enterprises such as Boeing and GE, and he is probably right. In the meantime, I hope to hang around long enough to see Russia develop its PD-35 engine- that will be a seminal achievement.


      2. GE has been in trouble for quite a while. It sold off its white goods division to the Chinese Haier group a few years back.

        Selling of its aviation unit would not be a smart move as those turbines are also used in the oil & gas industry & ships, not to mention its joint venture with Safran on the Leap series of commercial fans is over the bumps and ramping up production. They’ll make good money for the company for years to come. They’ll sell their lighting business first.


        1. Yes, it sounded to me as though they were trying to find a way to offload some of their power division without letting loose of control of the aviation component. But I don’t know how they would do that – the most widely-exported marine gas turbine in the world is the GE LM-2500 and its derivatives, and it is basically a jet engine without wings. The TICONDEROGA and ARLEIGH BURKE classes have four. Canadian frigates have two, plus a 20-cylinder Pielstick diesel.

          GE recently got a new CEO who was pushed into the ring with a mandate to turn the company around, and it sounds like he’s trying, but it also sounds like it might be too little, too late. It is significant nonetheless as GE is a bellwether American industry.


          1. RR is also in trouble. It recently sold its marine engine division, folded two others into one, and the Trent-1000 has significant design and production flaws, going beyond “just” the corrosion issues, which they are only now discovering. The XWB may also be similarly flawed.

            Moreover, it may have made a strategic mistake in focusing on
            the engine market for wide-body aircraft rather than the substantially larger one for narrow-bodies. (No idea if that’s true or not, seems plausible)

            And ThyssenKrupp is also in turmoil, after “activist investors”, reportedly demand it to “restructure”. This is an industrial behemoth, though less important than previously: 158,000 jobs compared to the 50,000 at RR and doing a lot more heavy industrial work. And Boeing has major supply chain problems. It looks as if the future is not bright for large-high technology western enterprises. Financial problems can be “fixed”, either through subsidy or creative accounting, but losing core capabilities (geddit?) and basic competence not to deliver half-baked products is rather more difficult to survive.

            (It is an interesting historical sidenote that Alfried Krupp, known war-criminal and profiteer, resumed control of the Krupp company post-war, and as mentioned in the article, created a Stiftung in his name to which the family shares devolved upon his death.


    1. “Born in the former Soviet Union, Lieberman’s voter base is made up of fellow Russian-speaking immigrants, and rightists and secularists who share his hostility to Israel’s Arab minority and the religious authority wielded by ultra-Orthodox Jewish parties.”

      Another mass murdering blue eyed jew boy…….Hmmmm….Wonder why he left Russia


      1. “Why did these Jews leave Russia?”
        The simple answer is: Because they could.

        For whatever reason, filled with ingratitude, these people turned their backs on their homeland and sought a “better” life elsewhere.
        I occasionally encounter some of their descendants in the U.S. I don’t begrudge anybody the right to live wherever they want, but some of these people have absolutely no concept that the Soviet Union saved their asses (or the asses of their forefathers), in the literal sense. It is this sense of ingratitude that bugs me more than anything else.


        1. I’m sure I remember seeing past online and print articles (and someone here at KS has also mentioned the same) that from the 1970s on, Jewish people leaving the Soviet Union and later Russia as emigrants were required to go to Israel. This was apparently part of an agreement that the US made with Israel, to force Russian emigrants whose internal Russian passports indicated Jewish ancestry to migrate to Israel. Most of these emigrants had only the slimmest association with Jews or Judaism: a parent or a grandparent might have had Jewish ancestry but that was all. Among other things they brought to Israel was neo-Nazism.

          I don’t know why they dislike Palestinians and Israeli Arabs but there are probably plenty of reasons I can guess at: they are ignorant of the history of Palestine from the late 19th century on when Zionists started arriving in the area and bought up land from Ottoman landlords that was farmed by Palestinian tenants. I have heard as well that the Israeli govt shunts new migrants into West Bank areas by offering discounted home loans to new home buyers if they agree to move into those parts. So immigrants are on the front line if Palestinians decide to attack Jewish settlements in their areas.

          As for disliking ultra-Orthodox Jewish religious parties, the reason is easy to find: ultra-Orthodox Jewish insistence on micro-managing people’s lives is intruding in their communities.


    2. I read an article in today’s National Post which speculated that war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza is inevitable, a matter of when rather than if. Of course it was written by an author whose sympathies lie entirely with Israel, the usual wailing about the death of Israeli civilians from rocket fire, and the futility of trying to make peace with Hamas, which Bibi characterizes the same as trying to make peace with ISIS. Probably because Israel is spoiling to go to war with somebody, so it can try out all its fancy toys that it bought from Washington with American taxpayers’ money, and because it fancies its chances against Gaza. Where, of course, everyone who is killed will be a militant – there are no civilians in Gaza.

      In the same issue was an article on the disappointing results of Italy’s attempt to establish some sort of order in Libya, which – just as a reminder – was the most progressive and prosperous country in Africa before the west went in and kicked everything apart and murdered its leader. Now it’s just the way the west likes; a divided country with at least two factions of tribesmen fighting for control. In a situation like that, Washington can dabble to its heart’s content, now supporting this one, now that one, depending on who is the most useful to its interests.


  5. “In the US, the Trump administration has designated Russia and China, two nuclear-armed powers, as “strategic competitors,” declaring that “great power competition” not terrorism is the primary focus of US national security. It has scrapped the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty in order to prepare for war against Russia and China while in France President Macron has called for the building of a European army to confront not only Russia and China but if necessary the United States.

    These and many other warning signs—not least the creation of innumerable flashpoints from the Middle East, Eastern Europe, the South China Sea to North East-East Asia—point to the acute danger of the eruption of World War III, which would assume a nuclear dimension from its very outset.

    This clear and present danger is rooted in the fundamental problem that now confronts mankind: how to free the vast productive forces which its labour has created from the destructive grip of capitalist social relations based on private ownership of the means of production and the division of the world into rival nation states and imperialist great powers.

    But as Marx once explained, no great historical problem ever arises without at the same time the material conditions also arising for its solution. And as the devastation of World War I was unleashed, that solution emerged in the form of the Russian Revolution of October 1917, the first successful conquest of power by the working class. The perspective that animated Lenin and Trotsky, the leaders of that revolution, was that the toppling of Tsarism in Russia was to be the opening shot of the world socialist revolution.

    The war, they insisted, arising from the breakdown of the capitalist system, signified the dawning of a new epoch in mankind’s historical development: an epoch of wars and revolutions. “A permanent revolution versus a permanent slaughter: that is the struggle, in which the stake is the future of man,” Trotsky wrote.”



    1. Just to clarify the ideological point:
      When Trotsky wrote of “permanent revolution” he was not talking about revolutions happening every day of the year. What he meant was along the lines of Lenin’s “April Theses”, namely, that when the revolution DID happen, then it should continue past the bourgeois phase and onto the phase where government passed to the Soviets.

      People get this point wrong quite a lot and use it to slander Trotsky as some kind of “mongerer” of never-ending unrest.

      As for the “permanent slaughter”, I think Trotsky was just being dramatic here, and pointing out that if the proletarian revolution doesn’t succeed, then the world is in for a lot of wars. Which turned out to be quite true, in our own era.


  6. TheRealNews
    Published on 14 Nov 2018
    The latest revelation about Brazil’s slow motion coup, designed to ensure that the center-left remains out of power and the far-right takes control, involves a general who admitted that he threatened the Supreme Court so it would imprison presidential front-runner Lula da Silva. We discuss the development with Brian Mier


  7. Norway and Finland have accused Russia of causing GPS malfunction that ocurred during the latest NATO arsing around close to Russian frontiers.

    No evidence given, mind.

    “Norway has determined that Russia was responsible for jamming GPS signals in the Kola Peninsula” said a Nato spokesman.

    Then the Norwegian Ministry of Defence stated that had traced the source of jamming that ocurred in Norway and Finnish Lapland “to a Russian military base on the Kola Peninsula”.

    So then the Finnish prime minister joined in with the condemnation, whilst at the same time conceding that the Norwegian authorities were unlikely to present any proof, saying that there still was “every reason to trust them”,

    It’s that old “very likely” mantra again! Loud accusations and nothing to back up the accusations.

    I wonder when former Secretary of State for the USA Kerry is going to present evidence that he uneqivocally stated the US had as regards the persons who were responsible for downing MH-17.

    He started shouting his mouth off about this before the bodies of those who died as a result of that tragedy were even stiff.


    1. Quite a bit like that stranded Russian secret submarine in Swedish waters, which was sending distress signals that the Swedes or somebody in that neck of the woods was picking up. A great burst of alarms and outcries, no proof, nothing shown to the public, silence and then forgetting. It’ll be the same this time; it has become fashionable in western circles to accuse Russia of all manner of aggression, and brings approval from Washington and Brussels. Hopefully Russia has a longer memory.

      I wonder if they will tie the collision of the Norwegian frigate with the tanker to GPS jamming – they didn’t know where they were, poor dears. But warships use a gyro to navigate, not GPS. Still, fortune favours the bold.


      1. The frigate Helge Ingstad and the oil tanker Sola collided near Bergen which, if I am not mistaken, has to be at least 2,300 km away from the Kola Peninsula and any Russian military bases there.

        Apparently the last message of the frigate to the oil tanker was this (it’s in the link to the article on the collision):

        Somebody should have told the captain and the navigator to look up and out the window.


        1. Yes; Russian GPS jamming in this incident is beyond unlikely. I’m just being sarcastic. Like I said, it has become fashionable to blame Russia for everything bad that happens, no matter how preposterous the case.

          There’s a captain who is all finished in the navy, even if he/she doesn’t go to jail for incompetence. Responsibility stops with the Captain no matter what happens because he is responsible overall for everything that happens in his ship, but in a congested waterway with limited maneuverability, he would be on the bridge and in command. There will be no sloughing it off on a junior officer. And the part about turning on their AIS after the collision just makes it look like they were trying to cover up. What a disaster.

          Incidentally, if anyone was wondering why so little has been mentioned about the crew and suspected some political dimension – congratulations. Four of five navigators aboard Helge Ingstad were women, and the Norwegian Armed Forces had barely gotten done championing her as a stake in the heart of the patriarchy. Jeez; we just can’t get away from it, can we?

          In the Norwegian magazine, Armed Forces Forum No. 2 in 2017 it was stated that “Four out of five navigators on frigate KNM Helge Ingstad are women“.

          “It is advantageous to have many women on board. It will be a natural thing and a completely different environment, which I look at as positive,” Lieutenant Iselin Emilie Jakobsen Ophus said. She is a navigation officer at KNM Helge Ingstad, according to Defense Forum. In yet another politically correct nod, the text notes that: “The Navy receives a much higher number of women after general conscription duty was introduced. Therefore, more women are also more motivated for further career opportunities in the Armed Forces.”

          “There has always been a perception that the Armed Forces are characterized by a very masculine environment, and in many ways it is true. It is mostly men in the Armed Forces, but it is important for me to show that you do not have to be ‘one of the guys’ to assume a role in the Armed Forces. Finding one’s place should not be at the expense of being a woman,” said Ophus.

          When more women are able to work together, it becomes easier to discover and to create a more balanced defense, the Armed Forces Forum opined. “It is important that the integration of women should work in every aspect: from officers and constables, to people,” Ophus said, adding: “The most important thing for me is that my job makes sense because you work for something bigger than yourself.”

          In the same magazine where the Norwegians boast about gender equality in their Navy, they also explained that they are looking into every department of their Armed Forces to apply the same formula.

          Gender would have had nothing to do with this accident; a woman can fuck up just as easily as a man and no more. But all that bunk about it being ‘important to be a woman, and not acting like one of the guys to find one’s place aboard’ is just that – bunk. On board you are just a sailor and you have a job to do that does not require you to showcase your womanhood. Similarly, ‘having a lot of women on board’ is no more ‘advantageous’ than having a lot of men. All that politically-correct bullshit looks very unfortunate now.

          The ship was not insured – I’m pretty sure you cannot get coverage for a warship, and lots of personal insurance policies have a clause which states that if you die as a result of combat action in war you are not covered, something a lot of people do not know – and will be a total loss. That loss will equal Norway’s entire annual defense budget, according to this source. If you watch the maritime center’s radar recording, Helge Ingstad displayed no AIS identifier and was doing more than 17 knots just before the collision. She appeared to intend to cross the tanker’s bow, but if that was the intent it was beyond stupid because that course would have taken her into the center of the passage where several other ships were on similar opposing courses.

          It is important to note that input from the navigator in home waters would normally not be required, and navigating such a well-traveled waterway would be an exercise in chart-reading and radar-picture management which would fall to the Officer of the Watch regardless whether he/she is a navigator. But the Captain would normally be on the bridge when other marine traffic was expected in close proximity, because mistakes happen.


          1. On the other hand, there is this dreamy Royal Norwegian Navy lieutenant who is wowing them on the Internet:

            Nice plait!

            He’s also a male model and a very sensitive person who likes little furry animals.


            Thor is real and he’s serving in the Norwegian Navy


            Instagram’s favourite Viking reveals his secrets

            Now here’s a real Jack Tar and not a big male model pansy like that soft-arse above:

            Home after 3 years on board and looking forward to heading for the boozer and necking 5 or 6 pints of Guinness, no doubt!

            Hearts of oak are our ships, jolly tars are our men!


                1. Well, you can keep Dreamy McDreamFace and his pet chihuahua. I wonder what would happen to Dreamy if he was to serve on board the HMS Bellipotent among real men like John Claggart, heh heh!


            1. The British sailor above is how sailors should look. That’s how they were in that far distant land where I was brung up, in which top class baccer was always labelled “Navy Cut”, namely it was quality tobacco that had been cured and soaked in molassess and essence of sweaty sockor whatever, so that it ended up looking like tarry rope-end or a bosun’s starter. Then what you cut off it was “Navy Cut”. I used to smoke it — thick black twist it was often called, and if you were a fag smoker, which I never was, when you got paid on a Friday, you used to ask for “Twenty best” or “Twenty Player’s”.

              British sailors used to get partly paid with tobacco and grog: kept them happy. They got some money, as well — and prize money.

              John Player Ltd. of Nottingham made “Player’s Navy Cut” and the packet was really atractive: it had on it a colourful illustration showing a sailor, who was modelled on a real, late 19th century RN Jack Tar, and whose cap ribbon read: “Hero”.

              In Manchester, though, there was another tobacco company, J. A. Pattreioux, that made “Senior Service”. Nobody could say “Pattreioux” properly where I lived in the boondocks: they used to say somethimg like “patriyooks”. And I remember when they used to get cigs from the “Yankee airbase”, one of which US brands was “Peter Stuyvesant”, and everyone used to call them “Peter Stoo-ee-vesant”.

              “Twenty Seniors, please”, was another common request in a tobacconist’s. I think there is only one tobacconist’s in Manchester now.

              “Senior Service Satisfy” was the slogan the cigarette manufacturer used.


              1. Yes, I started out smoking Export A (Export plain had no filter attached), which for some reason acquired the name “Green Death”. But in a large pack in Canada there was a large side and a smaller side, so that a full pack contained 25 cigarettes and not 20. The larger of the two interior packets was on the right.

                Later I switched to Players. I resolved to give them up if the price went above a dollar a pack, and it was poised to do that – just when I joined the navy in 1977, and the price went down to .35 a pack from the ship’s canteen, because they were duty-free and all the rest was tax. You were allowed to leave the ship each day with two packs, one of which must be opened. I gave up smoking for the millenium, and so have not smoked at all for nearly 18 years now.

                It’s hard to remember now, but smokers were once comfortably dominant in the navy. There were ashtrays in the radar consoles in the Operations Room, and the air usually had a layer of blue smoke at the top as if you were in a bar. Nobody paid any attention that non-smokers didn’t like it, because you never grasp how it stinks until you don’t smoke. There were ashtrays outside all the workshops in the main passageway on 3 deck, known as the Main Flats or Burma Road. That was the only odd bit of etiquette associated with smoking onboard (besides the obvious one that you must not smoke in bed, which is not really etiquette but self-preservation) – while it was perfectly all right for you to stand outside the Electricians’ Workshop in Burma Road and smoke a cigarette whilst chatting with someone within, it was not permitted to walk through the flats with a lit cigarette in your hand. A little like the way there are vending machines for beer on the street in Tokyo (or were in the 80’s and 90’s), but if you bought a can of beer from such a machine you were supposed to stand there and drink it; it was bad form to walk with it and continue to drink from it. Due to the possibility you might spill some on someone, I suppose.


                1. The RN used to get “Blue Liners” duty free — 300 a month, until they withdrew the privilige. My cousin used to hand them out when he was on leave. My dad reckoned they were Player’s in disguise. And they stopped the rum ration as well, but allowed them one measly 33 cl can of ale per watch or whatever in its stead.


                2. As a matter of fact, I used to wonder how my sailor cousin used to manage to get his packs of Blue Liners ashore because I’m pretty sure you weren’t allowed to take more than two packs with you, what with them being duty free.

                  And he used to bring navy room ashore for his dad, my uncle and my father’s eldest brother, because I remember him and my father getting rat arsed on it. And Nelson’s Blood was not like what they pass off as rum in pubs. This was about 1965.

                  I am sure you were punished if you tried to hoard your rum ration. When you were offered your ration, you either had to sling it “down the hatch” or refuse, and what you refused was thrown away as “gash” — all this being done under the watchful eyes of petty officers.

                  But my cousin was a Chief Petty Officer when he used to bring his swag home on leave.

                  Can’t trust no one, can you?


                3. The customs exemptions that apply to citizens apply to the Navy as well; once per quarter, while in American waters for in excess of 24 hours, Canadian sailors are permitted a duty-free issue from ship’s stores of one carton of cigarettes or an equivalent of cigars, and a case of 24 cans of beer or a 40-ounce bottle of liquor of your choice from the list of brands available. You pay the duty-free price, which as I last recall was about $14.00 for a carton of cigarettes, and a similarly-low price for the booze. So you can’t do it anything like every week, but it’s fairly frequent.

                  The only difference in the way the privilege is exercised which benefits the Chiefs and Petty Officers is that they are generally issued their duty-free goods the night before arriving in port, while the junior ranks get theirs on arrival. Because the temptation to start a little early might be overwhelming, and the Chiefs and Petty Officers are judged to have the necessary self-discipline.


                1. Full Strength?

                  They were the mothers of all gaspers!

                  I was pub crawling one evening with my brother-in-law, when I saw a pack of Capstan Full Strength on the pavement. I picked it up. Full! I gave them to my brother-in-law, who has smoked since he was 12 and still does. He had his 70th birthday last August. He was chuffed to death, because they cost a bloody fortune. This was about 20 years ago as well. He offered me a drag, because I always smoked Gallagher’s “Condor”, which is not for the fainthearted. I had a puff. I choked!


          1. Women should not be allowed on warships!

            End of!!!!

            Nor should women be combat soldiers and fliers.

            Not saying they can’t do the job: just saying it’s not necessary that they do it.

            They should stick to what they should be good at: making babies and cooking.

            And bollocks to my being accused of being a sexist!



            1. Well, according to studies carried out in Canada, the young male demographic is not sufficient to fill the military vacancies, and we must take women or accept a smaller force. On the whole, my own experience serving with women – as subordinates, peers and superiors based on rank and appointment – was positive. There was about the same rate of failure as there is with men; not all women were good at the job, but not all men are, either. Some were excellent, about the same rate as men. As you will find in any mixed-gender setting, there were women who had the knack of getting along with men, so that they were liked and respected for themselves, did not have to be vulgar to be accepted and fell easily into being one of the gang. Others were less so. I did not find that I had to change my behaviour very much, and it was certainly not the hardship the old salts warned it would be.

              And it’s not entirely women’s fault that some activists – let’s call them ‘liberals’, for want of a better term – cannot resist playing politics with gender issues, and making pompous portents about how women are going to shake things up and improve everything in which they are involved because…well, because they’re not men. Men have had their chance, the narrative goes, and now women will show them how it’s done. It would not be acceptable, these days, for a man being interviewed to state that things always go better when there are a lot of men in the organization. But for some reason when a woman says it about a lot of women, it’s supposed to be inspiring.

              I had a shipmate once, in the old ANNAPOLIS – a Croat, as it happens, name of Jasenka Pavlovic. She was part of a small group of Navy women interviewed in the combat school while in training, for a local magazine; a story that would be called “Women in the Navy – Charting a New Course” or something like that. She told me and other crew members later that the writers prodded all the women interviewed for anecdotes about how the men did not respect them and the difficulties they encountered in being accepted in a traditionally male environment. None of them at the time was even on a ship yet, but they were being asked to comment negatively on their treatment aboard. And I imagine this is frequently the case when journalists are looking for a story with some zip to it, that will get people talking. That’s the object, after all – to hell with telling the truth; that’s boring.

              And that’s the trouble with making a ship like the HELGE INGSTAD a symbol of women’s triumph – if anything happens to it…


              1. Before I became an exile in Moscow, all my working life I had worked only with men. That was because my old job is (was — it no longer exists, at least, not in the UK) the only one in the UK from which women are legally barred.

                In fact, when I had to leave my old means of earning a daily crust (Thank you Maggie; from the bottom of my heart, thank you!), I was quite concerned about how I should cope at work in the company of women colleagues. And I must admit that at first it was quite a trial for me to sit in a high school staffroom with a great bunch of women.

                I soon managed, though: I just ignored them and their idle chatter.


                1. They’re generally quite a different bunch in the navy, or at least the demographic that gets along with men. The first group that showed up on active-duty warships – the early 90’s, this would have been – were almost all the daughters of Newfie (Newfoundland) fishermen, who had heard every dirty word you ever knew and some besides that are obscure colloquialisms, and while it is never polite to swear so profusely in women’s company as you typically do among men, they would not blanch and faint if you let the ‘f’ word slip occasionally. They were strong, on average, for girls, and could do hard work, and you rarely noticed they were attractive (those that were) until you saw them ashore out of uniform. Not many stayed with it for a career, though; most became involved with someone else in the service, and since it is so difficult to maintain a relationship when you both serve and might be on different ships, it was usually the woman who elected to leave the service for a more traditional role. They made good shipmates, overall, and the atmosphere at sea was a good deal more light-hearted and humorous when they were there. I don’t know that they were the great and revolutionary boon to military service that the activists always choose to make out they are, as if men couldn’t get it right for hundreds of years and needed showing, but they certainly didn’t make it worse.


            2. According to naval historian N.A.M Rodger (“The Wooden World” – a magnificent work, very readable) women fairly often were aboard warships on service in the heyday of the Royal Navy….


              1. And which, according to legend, is the origin of the phrase “Shake a leg”, meaning to get up out of bed and get going. It is fairly obvious when a hammock is occupied even if you can’t see the occupant, so they would be ordered to ‘show a leg’. If it was smooth and hairless or otherwise obviously a woman’s, the Bos’un would have to look further for his first victim.


                1. Must be the original use of “down and out” since sluggards had the hammock lashings cut and were brought out and down.


  8. Oh what a surprise!

    The ECHR has ruled in favour of Navalny vs. Russia

    The court ruled that Russia must pay the plaintiff 50 thousand euros as compensation for moral harm, 1,025 euros for pecuniary damage, as well as 12,653 euros to cover legal costs”, it states.

    In the text of the decision, it states that the court has confirmed the position according to which the Russian authorities violated the rights of Navalny and the arrests of the oppositionist “were politically motivated”.

    Well there you are then! No argument against that.

    Call round at the trademan’s entrance, the Kremlin, next week, Lyosha, and you’ll get your dosh, though I think a smack in your gob would be preferable.


    1. The EHCR is a NATzO kangaroo court that makes predictable, politically motivated decisions against Russia. How is this “court” supposed to establish that Navalny is subject to “politically motivated” mistreatment? When he organizes illegal protests blocking major roads even though he obtained permits for protests in other venues, that is prima facie violation of the law by him. The EHCR utterly ignores these criminal activities by Navalny and the fact that he has been coddled by the Russian authorities who do not follow the standard procedure in NATzO to escalate the legal sanction (prison time and fines) for serial violators who show contempt to the courts. Navalny keeps getting treated as if he is a first time offender and not a social deviant (which he is). Any EHCR decision painting Navalny, the grifter, as some sort of victim of the state is an utterly ludicrous joke.


    2. The Kreakly are coming in their pants over this ECHR shite, crowing on the blogosphere that only retards now could believe that their icon Lyosha is not persecuted and suffers regular imprisonment simply because he is the leading oppositionist and that his convictions and imprisonments have all been political.

      Yeah, and if he had been allowwed to run for president, he would have won, and Russia would now be paradise on earth.

      Wonder why his green splashing suddenly stopped?

      Wonder why he isn’t blind in one eye now?


      1. Don’t pay any attention to Lyosha and his stunts; he is a nobody in the country where he is trying desperately to be noticed, and his ‘opposition’ all consists of blathering about corruption and pushing the envelope so he will get arrested. If he wants to spend three months out of every seven in jail, that’s up to him. I don’t imagine the police and the government will give him a free hand to do as he likes just because the ECHR says he is a widdle political martyr, and now they will have to document his transgressions to a fare-thee-well so the Europeans do not get their shit in a knot over poor Lyosha, but the bottom line is he is still not going to win major votes from Russians with his grandstanding and yelling for attention. If he is wildly popular in Europe and the USA, so what? He’s not trying to get elected in either of those. Where he is trying to get elected, he fails every time. Let the west build him up as a political giant if it wants to. Where it matters, he’s still a mouse.


    3. ECHR rulings are usually non-binding, although the political capital he will make with the decision is pure gold for him – any pushback he gets from the Russian government in future will be put down to political motivation, established by legal precedent. But it doesn’t really matter all that much, since Lyosha is basically unimportant in Russian politics and is not going to get elected to anything significant, while the disproportionate noise he will make over this great victory will give his western backers new optimism and hope.


      1. In fact Navalny’s win is limited if you read the ruling:

        1. He complained he was politically discriminated against, using article 14. This was not recognized by the ECHR court, so no acknowledgment he was discriminated against by Russia because of his political views.
        2. He complained that he was denied freedom of assembly on seven occasions that led to seven arrests, using article 11. The ECHR court ruled in favor only on two out of the seven occasions.
        3. He complained about limitation of restrictions on rights on the same seven arrests using article 18. The ECHR ruled that was true also only in two out of the seven occasions.
        4. The other two articles (article 5 and 6) were acknowledged not on the basis that the arrests were unwarranted, but on the basis that the time it took for him to be processed was unnecessarily long (he has been held for several hours before being taken before a judge on one occasion and held overnight another time). They ruled there was no violation of his rights concerning one of the arrests, but that there have been violations of his rights in relation to the administrative proceedings in the six other arrests.

        I’m not sure this is the resounding victory Navalny is claiming it is.


        1. Quite a bit like Khodorkovsky’s ECHR ruling, which was immediately seized upon as a resounding victory by the Left, but in which only very specific limited bits were assessed to be political persecution while overall his complaint was assessed as unfounded. In fact, the court found that just because rulings against Khodorkovsky were convenient for the ruling party was not sufficient in and of itself to declare those rulings ‘politically motivated’.


          1. Right! I remember one of the rulings as regards the alleged inhuman treatment meted out to St. Mikhail of the GULag was that his being held in a holding cell during his many court hearings had been inhuman because only had a bucket to piss in.

            Poor thing!


            1. Ha, ha! And when Navalny was in court once for one or another of his numerous provocations, his hamsters made much of his having to stand for several hours, and that he was not offered a chair – they briefly tried to make the plastic chair a symbol of progressive and proper thinking just the way they did with the rubber ducks.


      2. I think there’s about three years left before the rest of the terms expire for all the judges Russia elected (including the one from Russia).

        I have no idea if the government actually values the ECHR, but they have a free excuse to leave if they desire. This is a court with elected judges, and Russia’s participation in it is already cut off.


        1. I think Russia remains a participant in international institutions, despite how it is treated, in the hope that the current madness will pass and things will go back to some approximation of the way they were instead of this constant agitation for war. It’s hard to walk away from organizations which took decades if not centuries to build, because once the door closes on you, you won’t be asked back. The west recognizes its mistake in ever letting Russia participate on an equal basis, and if it could ever get rid of the Russian permanent-member UN veto, Washington at least would be over the moon with pleasure. The Russian veto has prevented several opportunities for the USA to rampage and smash and regime-change as it loves to do, and once that restriction was gone it could re-order the world to its heart’s content. If Russia left voluntarily, the most it would ever be granted again would be observer status.


    4. Навальный потребовал от региональных штабов больше фейковых расследований

      Navalny has demanded off his regional staff more fake investigations

      A few days ago, it became known that the notorious blogger Aleksei Navalny had set the bar higher for the heads of his regional headquarters as regards number of “anti-corruption investigations” they were to undertake and if they were not undertaken, then the headquarters would be deprived of funding.

      Well, taking into account the fact that until today the video clips from the regional offices have been filled with, to put it mildly, a lot of inconsistencies and unreliable facts: so far, nothing good has come out of this.

      Suffice it to recall how the staff of the Omsk headquarters once made a false accusation of corruption against the superintendant of the Soviet District of Omsk tax Inspectorate, Anatoly Chekmaryov. The investigation said that for a person not of the highest position, the official had a very luxurious house, which, according to them, was not on the land register, meaning that Chekmaryov allegedly did not pay property tax on it. As it turned out, the information was refuted, and the Navalny headquarters staff had to make a public apology to the official.

      A similar story happened in Volgograd, where the “Navalnyites” tried to slander the local authorities, accusing them of buying too expensive cars. However, the auction, on the basis of which this “investigation” was built, had not taken place, and accordingly, no procurement had been made.

      In Ivanovo, “The City of Brides” [a textile town with a large female population, hence its nickname — ME], the staff of the Navalny headquarters have also distinguished themselves. There, the entire city administration was immediately accused of corruption, which, in the opinion of the Navalny HQ staff, spent too much money on the purchase of software for state institutions. In the end it turned out that the prices were fully consistent with market prices

      The number of false accusations made by the Navalnyites can go on endlessly because they have never really bothered to double-check the facts and search for proof. Obviously, following their being put under such pressure by Aleksei, the quality of these “investigations” made by his HQ staff will not only not improve, but vice versa. For the sake of fulfilling the plan and maintaining their salaries, HQ staffs will simply make up new accusations, which even a naive schoolchild would hardly believe. And all in order to help Navalny organize hype around himself and to create some sort of illusion about his popularity.


      1. It’s really little wonder that Washington is so paternally fond of Navalny and considers him such a stout chap; their methods are similar. Make a nuisance of yourself until the other fellow swings for you, and then there will be a big fight and it’s all his fault because he swung first – you were therefore only defending yourself against aggression. It is in this manner that Navalny tries to get noticed and become such a pain in the ass that the authorities must recognize him and talk about him. That’s probably why Putin’s refusal to name him in public generates such a buzz of excitement among the hamsters. Alexei’s tactics are working!!! In much the same fashion, Washington hopes that its sanctions will so damage and complicate the life of ordinary Russians that they must acknowledge it is a great and mighty power, and beg for relief from their torment. Both are fantasizing about what a big noise they are.



    “Languages across the world have unique phonemic systems.”

    Since we have the PC revisionist linguist engaging in libel smear again. Russian does not have “th”. Period. No amount of PC subjectivist relativism can contradict this fact.

    Since DIFFERENT languages have UNIQUE phonemes it makes sense that their writing systems would reflect this. So using the Latin alphabet in Polish results in the introduction of extra symbols and non-Latin pronunciation of Latin letters. (Example: see if you can write out Zagloba based on the way it is pronounced). Yet the resident “linguist” on this board keeps on attacking anyone who points out that different alphabets serve different languages and runs around claiming that the Latin alphabet is universal and can easily replace the Cyrillic alphabet for Russians.

    Since this clown loves putting words in my mouth, I understand that HUMAN language morphology has universal aspects. For example, the most “primitive” languages are actually the most complicated with all sorts of declension, tenses and ending structure. Old languages such as Chinese and languages emerging from regions with a blending of different languages such as English exhibit simplification where word order carries meaning and endings are lost together with tenses. Chinese has no future and past tense. English has past and present. Russian is also subject to a lot of different linguistic influences (e.g. Turkic) but has retained more structure than English. I suppose this is because the British Isles were subject to ethnic influxes (Saxons) that led to blending whereas Russia was a relatively more isolated even under the Tatar-Mongol domination so there was less ethnic blending. Whereas for English 50% of the vocabulary is French thanks to the Norman period, the influence of French on Russian via the love of Russian elites for this language for over a century did not leave such a strong mark (but it may have changed the tone of the language compared to Ukrainian and central European Slavic languages).


    1. Much more than fifty out of every hundred words in my mother tongue come from French and through French from Greek and Latin. However, more than nine out of ten words that I speak in my everyday life are from the Old English that my forefathers spoke, those men and women who sailed across the stormy seas in their longships from their homeland over one thousand five hundred years ago. All the words that I have just written are just such word not one of them comes from Latin, French, Greek and so forth.


      1. Vocabulary is very interesting in that it is often cumulative instead of displacing and survives longer than grammar. So in English French derived words are used for meat at the dinner table and original (old) words are used for the live animal (mutton-sheep, beef-cow, pork-pig). Conjugation and declension are easier to lose since they are harder to learn.


        1. The plural for “shoe” in my dialect is “shoen” and the plural for “child” is “childer” (cf. Kind and Kinder in Modern German). And “nasty” meant “dirty/filthy” when I was a child: “Tek that nasty shirt off!”

          Also, the second person singular is still used by many in my old neck of the woods, though its use now seems to be dying out amongst those much younger than I am who often wear US baseball caps back-to-front.

          When, in August 2017, I met up near my hometown with my old workmate of almost 40 years ago, he said to me, “Nay, how ar’t dooin’. It’s good to see thi again. Tha’ looks awreet!” [Now, how art thou doing? It is good to see thee again. Thou looks all right. ]

          It was good to hear the old talk again; utterances such as: “Ee wuz soot on wah wachin foootbaw when ee fawed off!” (He was sitting on [the] wall watching football when he fell off.)


    2. Oi veh, Kirill, it never ends well when you venture into the realm of Linguistics. You are so out of your depth that it just isn’t funny any more.
      For starters, please produce documentary proof that I, or anybody else, ever claimed that Russia has the /th/ phoneme. Fact: Russian does not have this sound in its catalogue of consonantal phonemes.

      P.S. – Stooges, didn’t I predict accurately that Kirill would resort to the winged phrase “blood libel” — well, he used the term “libel smear”, but it’s pretty much the same thing. Kirill uses these terms whenever anybody challenges his grasp of basic facts. Instead of just admitting that he made a factual error, and then getting on with his life. This guy is a complete idiot, like I said before he doesn’t even understand the basic difference between phonemics and alphabets. He certainly never studied Scientific Linguistics, even at the Freshman 101 level.

      Now, I never actually claimed that Latin was a “universal” alphabet, that just something that Kirill imagined I said, in one of his psychotic episodes.
      But, now that he mentions it, Russian COULD actually be written okay in Latin. It’s probably not a good idea, but it is doable. This is called transliteration. For more information about how Russian is “transliterated” into the Russian alphabet, say for purposes of the Dewey Decimal system in English-language libraries, you can read more here about the various systems in place.
      Kirill is such an idiot that he probably doesn’t realize, that any time a translators translates, say, Dostoevsky or Tolstoy, they have to use such a system to transliterate Russian names! And sometimes they even have to use diacritic marks! Which Kirill, in his idiocy, considers to be a heresy! Egads!


      1. P.S. – Kirill has also been informed, on numerous occasions, that the Cyrillic alphabet itself sometimes resorts to diacritic marks – gasp! For example, the letters ё and й.
        Which it has every right to do, as a fairly decent alphabet.

        But such counter-examples never trouble Kirill. He simply asserts even more strongly his erroneous and ludicrous opinions, accuses the fact-checkers of “libels” and “smears”, and then sometimes even goes on to threaten them with sodomy and other forms of sexual violence.

        One could feel sorry for this clearly deranged individual, were it not for that latter point.


      2. P.P.S. – Quoting Kirill: “So using the Latin alphabet in Polish results in the introduction of extra symbols and non-Latin pronunciation of Latin letters.”

        Otto, are you so deluded that you don’t even realize how stupid that last phrase sounds to a linguist?
        Are you saying that Polish people don’t even know how to pronounce their own language, since it is written down in Latin letters? And what exactly is a proper “Latin” pronunciation of Latin letters?

        Oi vey…. Paging Wanda!


        1. If we disregard the personal attacks, it’s really an interesting discussion you are having with Kirill because it gives an opportunity to learn new things (at least, new to me) when you refute what he says.

          About the proper “Latin” pronunciation of Latin letters, I don’t know what exactly Kirill had in mind since most European languages use Latin letters yet pronounce them differently. My own interpretation is for example when Arabic is transliterated into the Latin alphabet, a combination of letters “kh” is used to represent the sound “خ” (sounds like the Russian “Х”) , or “gh” to represent “غ”. The sound “خ” exists in some European languages (German “ch”, kind of Spanish “j” ) but the adopted transliteration is “kh”. So of course Arabic speakers know how to pronounce their language when written down in Latin letters, but I would think the “Latin” pronunciation of “kh” would remain a regular “k”? Or does the fact that a language (whose original alphabet is not Latin) uses Latin letters automatically adds the represented sound into the list of “proper Latin” pronunciation?


          1. As regards the “proper pronunciation of Latin letters”, I learnt “classical” Latin at school, namely the Latin that Julius Caesar, Virgil, Ovid etc. spoke (at least in orations) and wrote, whilst at church I sang in Mediaeval “Church Latin”.

            For example, “Ave Maria” (Hail Mary) in Church Latin is pronounced as ah-vay mar-ee-yah, but in classical Latin as ah-way mar-ee-yah, and “Regina Coeli” (Queen of Heaven) in Church Latin is re-dzh-aye-nah ch-ey-lee [“regina” as in “vagina”], whereas in classical Latin it is reg-aye-nah kay-lee [“hard “g” and hard “c”, the latter as in “c*nt”!]

            “Julius Caesar” in classical latin is pronounced you-lee-oos kie-zar.

            And Julius Caesar said way-nee wee-dee week-ee — Veni, vidi, vici!

            Vade in pace! — wah-day in pah-kay, classically said.



              1. I remember my first Latin class too, we all burst out laughing when the teacher told us that Yulius Kesar stamped his little foot and lisped: “Wenny Weedy Weekee!” Somehow that doesn’t sound so masculine, does it?


                1. It reminds me of the righteous indignation of the main character in “Goodbye, Mr. Chips”, recounting the ‘new pronunciation’ for Latin which would see ‘vicism’ pronounced “we-kiss-im”.


          2. Thanks, Nat, it is actually an interesting discussion, isn’t it? Kirill makes it all too easy to launch cheap shots at him, because he is so clueless when it comes Linguistics, and yet he simply cannot resist making forays into this foreign territory. Like I said before, this feud has been going on for quite a long time — on Mark’s blog — sorry, Mark! — but I trust it provides education and entertainment for the hoi polloi!

            The issue of alphabets should be actually a utilitarian matter, but people tend to get emotional when talking about alphabets. Perhaps this is the “cultural” component of any alphabet. Some people (Hint: religious Jews) even start to think of their alphabets as holy relics given to them by God. (In which case, one would think that God could come up with a system that included vowels!)

            Bottom line: professional linguists agree, that people go on speaking their languages the way these languages have evolved, without regard for the spelling. Hence, Kirill is being completely ludicrous when he fusses that adopting the Latin alphabet should affect, in any way, how people pronounce their own language. Like I said before, Kirill does not know the difference between the phonetic and phonemic layers of human language; nor does he understand the difference between spoken language and alphabets which encode spoken language.

            For example, Czechs and Poles pronounce their Slavic languages just as they are, without regard for the fact that these nations adopted the Latin alphabet. In theory, people could just scrap all existing alphabets and invent a new one that could be used for all the languages of the world. Such attempts have been made, but are unlikely to succeed, because (A) people are attached to their alphabets as cultural artifacts; and (B) most people, like Kirill, don’t understand the difference between phonetics and alphabets. This situation could be remedied, if Scientific Linguistics were to be made a required subject in Middle School.

            In truth, there is no reason to scrap an existing alphabet if it works well for the people who speak that language. The Cyrillic alphabet works very well for Russian, although could use some tweaking and reforms from time to time.
            The Latin alphabet works well for the Czechs, their alphabet is virtually perfect in terms of one-to-one correspondence between meaningful phoneme and alphabetic symbol.
            The Polish alphabet is less perfect than Czech, because Polish scholars went the route of doubling letters, for example writing the Slavic /sh/ phomene as sz instead of a single letter with a diacritic. Perhaps because their printing presses at the time did not have diacritics.
            Using two letters to write a single consonantal phoneme makes the Polish words unnecessarily long and adds informational redundancy. However, on the other hand, once one learns the system, one can very easily learn to read and write Polish. This is why Polish children don’t need spelling bees!

            I myself learned to read Polish in under an hour. I don’t really speak Polish (I know a very words and expressions, that’s about it), but I can read the words in a text aloud with reasonably correct pronunciation, simply because there is such a good correspondence between phonemic catalogue and symbolic representation. On the other hand, it takes people years to learn to read and write English, which has a horrible alphabet, and this is why American children have to have spelling bees.


            1. The rune “thorn” was still used in Early Middle English before finally having been replaced by the digraph “th”, hence the pseudo-archaic “Ye Olde …” signs that one occasiionally sees. And “thorn ” is still used in modern Icelandic.

              Þe Þree Þeatricals Þought Þings Þat Þespians Þink.


                1. True, but printers by Caxton’s time and Middle English scribes before him used to freely interchange the voiced/unvoiced runes. Eventually, thorn came to represent both soins, as does the digraph “th”.

                  In time “thorn” began to look like the rune “wynn” (Ƿ, ƿ). One theory why the voiced/unvoice rune became represented by the Latin “y” until that was replaced by the digraph “th” is that Y existed in the printer’s type fonts that were imported from Germany or Italy, while thorn did not.

                  The word was never pronounced with a “y” sound, though, even when so written.The first printing of the King James Version of the Bible in 1611 used the Y form of thorn with a superscript E in places such as Job 1:9, John 15:1, and Romans 15:29. It also used a similar form with a superscript T, which was an abbreviated that, in places such as 2 Corinthians 13:7. All were replaced in later printings by the or that, respectivelyWiki


                2. Furthermore, Ð is a capital letter: the lower scale is ð and is still used in icelandic. In Icelandic, ð represents a voiced dental fricative [ð], similar to the “th” in the English “that”, but it never appears as the first letter of a word, where þ is used in its stead.

                  The letter thorn was used for writing Old English very early on, as was ð; unlike ð, thorn remained in common use through most of the Middle English period. Both letters were used for the phoneme /θ/, sometimes by the same scribe.

                  This sound was regularly realised in Old English as the voiced fricative [ð] between voiced sounds, but either letter could be used to write it; the modern use of [ð] in phonetic alphabets is not the same as the Old English orthographic use. A thorn with the ascender crossed (Ꝥ) was a popular abbreviation for the word that.Wiki [my stress]

                  So “that” could be written as ðat, but was often written as þat.

                  Annie Mist Thorisdottir, athlete from Reykjavik, iceland.

                  In Iclandic orthography: Anníe Mist Þórisdóttir


  10. One way or another, Gazprom is going to have to pay Ukraine $2.6 Billion, so they might as well just do it and have it over with. Of course the Ukies will prance and jump up and down in the streets and yell ‘Slava Ukrainy’ – and hasten off to prepare new lawsuits in search of more money from the Russian state. But a Swiss court has ordered all Nord Stream partners to not make any payments to Gazprom, instead to pay all monies owed to Gazprom to Swedish bailiffs, who will redistribute it to Ukraine until they recover all their money.


  11. Well. King Donald certainly put China in its place, letting it know who is boss of the world.

    “China’s financial markets are also starting to send some positive signals for the first time in a long time. The CSI 300 Index of equities jumped 1.17 percent Thursday, bringing its gains to 6.50 percent from its low for the year on Oct. 18. In contrast, the MSCI All-Country World Index is down 1.67 percent. The yuan is starting to strengthen, rising for a third day in its longest streak of gains in more than a month. China’s bond market is recovering after two consecutive monthly declines. The Bloomberg Barclays China Aggregate Bond Index has risen 1.14 percent in November even though the global fixed-income market is down 3.53 percent.”


  12. I can’t believe I have to do this again, but, yes, I did go back and find that original thread on Mark’s old blog, in which the current Linguistic Feud began between myself and Kirill. This was back on April 6, 2017, you can read the whole thread here, there is a ton of comments on that particular post, of which this thread is a just a tiny subset.

    Here is the main exchange between myself and Kirill, people can go back and read the whole thing, if they are so inclined. I elided out comments inserted by other Stooges who jumped into the fray, on either side, and I added boldface to those of Kirill’s utterances which are particular stupid, just to make them stand out. But I didn’t change anything. The whole discussion is out there, for posterity.

    Newer Stooges should be aware that Kirill and I had been feuding since long before that time, on various issues, hence the acerbic tone. I assert that Kirill started the war, but either way, it has been ongoing, and mostly carried out on the battlefield of Mark’s blog!
    Also, I challenge Kirill to go back to that thread, or any thread, and try to find ANYWHERE (which he won’t), that I ever said that Russian had the /th/ phoneme. It doesn’t, of course, which is why I never said that. Kirill’s memory is faulty, since he is basically a madman, but of course he will never admit that he was factually wrong about anything, he’s that kind of guy. Here it is (apologies to Mark for polluting your blog one more time with this B.S., but there you have it):

    kirill says:
    April 29, 2017 at 1:01 pm
    The alphabet may be just a “tool set” as repeated incessantly here, but that is neither here nor there. Slavic languages have Asiatic sounds (tsu, tsh, zh, etc) that are not found in most European languages. (Slavic does not have sounds found in English such as “th”). So creating custom letters for these sounds is the correct approach. Trying to force Latin to mimic these sounds results in convoluted strings of letters that don’t even reproduce these sounds (e.g. zh) unless defined to represent them. Same with special symbols added to Latin letters to make them sound different. May as well use Cyrillic letters.

    Yalensis says:
    April 29, 2017 at 2:05 pm
    “Asiatic” sounds???!!!! Ha ha!
    Stick with physics, Kirill.
    You obviously don’t know squat about comparative linguistics, or phonology in general.
    Did you know, for example, that the EUROPEAN language of French has a “zh” sound?
    “Non,” tu dis, “je sais pas?”

    kirill says:
    April 30, 2017 at 4:57 am
    Ah shaddup. Lying sack of troll shit.
    I suggest people look up Japanese and Chinese and compare the sounds to German and French. There is no “ts”, “tsh” sound in German, French, Italian, etc. . Trotsky lover Yeltsin [Kirill’s typo, he meant to say “yalensis”] and his one-clown crusade to revise Russian history by ad hominems and lies is utterly pathetic.

    • Yalensis says:
    April 30, 2017 at 5:33 am
    No [ts] sound in German?
    What about the word Zeit ? (“Time”)
    Kirill, even a moron like you can learn to use wikipedia.
    Did you even check out this wiki entry on Germany phonology before posting your moronic comment? Wiki states quite clearly, and German Linguists agree, that there is a “dental alveolar” [ts] phoneme in German.
    It’s just that it’s written using the letter “Z” in the alphabet, and idiots such as yourself are incapable of understanding the difference between spoken and written sounds.
    And that’s just one counter-example….
    Now please return to your asylum and remember to take your meds…

    • Yalensis says:
    April 30, 2017 at 5:35 am
    P.S. Moscow Exile has the right idea: Bring back Glagolitic!
    And make all world languages use it – heh heh!

    kirill says:
    April 28, 2017 at 7:09 am
    What a collection of retarded wankers. They are always masturbating how the Ukrs are pure Slavs but Russians are Tatar-Mongol low-breeds. The Latin alphabet does not serve Slav linguistic needs as is evident from the consonant + special symbol soup that one gets in Poland, Czechia, Slovakia, etc. Following the Banderatard logic, it is Russians that should drop the Cyrillic script since they are not pure Slavs.

    Yalensis says:
    April 28, 2017 at 2:52 pm
    It’s more like a “Catholic” vs. “Orthodox” thing.
    For example, Serbs and Croats speak exactly the same language.
    But Serbs (Orthodox) write it in Cyrillic, whereas Croats (Catholics) write it in Latin.
    (I’m making some generalizations, obviously, but that’s the basic history.)
    Either alphabet is actually perfect for writing Serbo-Croatian, so in theory it shouldn’t matter which alphabet you use. An alphabet is just a tool, like a screwdriver.
    But people tend to ideologize alphabets and regard them as something with their own transcendent meaning. It’s like saying, “This screwdriver is a Nazi!”
    I polemicize against that fallacy, but people don’t listen to me. unless they are professional linguists or have some training in that field.

    Kirill says:
    April 30, 2017 at 4:59 am
    Yalensis, the ad hominem, hater Tortskyist [another typo: Kirill meant me call me a “Trotskyist”] “warrior”. This clown should stick to his BS theory that all alphabets are the same. That is, that all languages are the same.

    Yalensis says:
    April 30, 2017 at 5:20 am
    Oi yoi yoi, Kirill!
    You use “ad hominem” in the same sentence while combining “Trotskyist” (a political tag) with hysterically idiotic misinformation about phonology and alphabets!
    Is that not the definition of ad hominem?
    I don’t even know where to begin, your collosal ignorance has made me almost speechless, maybe because I am laughing so hard.
    It’s pretty clear that you never studied Linguistics or even have a clue what you are talking about when discussing Linguistic concepts such as phonology or alphabets.
    Linguistics is a science, just the same as Physics or Chemistry, and it is not for the likes of amateurs to pretend they know something when they don’t.
    I don’t presume to discuss Physics, likewise you should not discuss Linguistics.
    And, by the way, I wonder if you DO really know anything about Physics, or if you are just bullshitting people, the way you tried to bullshit people about Phonology in your comment above. With your ludicrous remark about “Asiatic” phonemes. If it wasn’t for people like me who actually have degrees in Linguistics, your comment might have gone unchallenged. Similarly, I wonder if you are making shit up when you talk about quantum physics. Well, I’ve have to leave that discussion to others, since I am not qualified to debate you on that particular field of study.
    But I AM qualified to debate you on anything to do with Linguistics, so please BRING IT ON!!!
    Startiing with this:
    Did I really say that “All alphabets are the same?”
    Or are you possibly misquoting me while tossing out ad hominems combining Trotsky with Phonology?
    Let us be clear about this, as Richard Nixon used to say:
    Some alphabets are better than others.
    The scientific measure of a “goodness” or “badness” of an alphabet, is how well it encodes the spoken language for which it was created.
    Cyrillic is a good alphabet and is well adapted to the Slavic languages.
    But it is not perfect, and Russia, for starters, could use some additional orthographic reforms.
    Now, the Latin alphabet is used for many languages, for some it is an efficient and well-suited coding system; for others (for example, English), not so much.
    The Latin alphabet, when supplemented with diacritics and the like, can work quite well to encode Slavic languages, for example, written Czech, Polish, and Croatian.
    It’s as simply as that, it has nothing to do with Trotskyism, and in conclusion you should really go back to your asylum, you ignorant ape.
    By the way, what is your worthy scientific opinion of the Braille alphabet – ha ha!

    [It was after this polemic that I decided to post that series on my blog, in which I attempted to explain and popularize Scientific Linguistics for my readers while also having more opportunities to make fun of “Otto”.]


  13. Украинский политик: для Порошенко “инцидент с рукопожатием” – это трагедия
    12:4412.11.2018 (обновлено: 13:49 12.11.2018

    Ukrainian politician: For Poroshenko “the handshake incident” is a tragedy
    12:4412.11.2018 (updated: 13:49 12.11.2018)

    At the events in Paris commemorating the hundredth anniversary of the end of the First World War, the President of the United States, Donald Trump, did not shake hands with the President of the Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko. On Radio Sputnik, Ukrainian politician Volodymyr Oliynyk commented on the incident.

    The President of the United States Donald Trump did not shake hands with his Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko before the ceremony in Paris to mark the hundredth anniversary of the end of the First World War. Video published portal Global News:

    [Right at the end, from 1.09, you can see Poroshenko at the back, to the left.]

    On the footage can be seen the American leader arriving at the Arc de Triomphe and then proceeding to his place on the podium. Trump welcomed the President of France Emmanuel Makron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and guests at the ceremony who were standing alongside them.

    At the same time, Poroshenko, who was in the second row, was staring at Trump. However, the American leader did not pay attention to him.

    Later, in response to a request that he comment on information concerning the missing handshake, the Ukrainian leader accused the Russian media of “lies”.

    “Everything you say is a lie and everything that Russian television says”, he said.

    Déjà vu, mes Stooge amis?


    1. See, the Russians were lying again, as usual. Using his super speed, Poroshenko raced to Trump’s side and shook his hand so fast that clunky Russian recording equipment was not fast enough to pick it up. Superior Ukrainian gear, though, will show the two pals enjoying a warm handshake and smiling at each other in a manly way.


    2. At least whoever organised the parade must have had a good sense of irony in placing Mr and Mrs Porky Pig behind the Satanyahu couple. Pee-yew, what a stench the four must be creating.


      1. I wonder who that North African-looking bloke is — the one wearing the tifter with the badge on the front? President of Tunisia or wherever? That must be his lad alongside, whose hand Trump shakes. I bet that pissed off Porky: giving that whipper-snapper a handshake and ignoring his magnificence.


        1. Probably mistook Poroshenko for the President of Easter Island, with that thumping great melon he’s got, and ignored him as someone of no consequence. Which, in fact, he is. The latter, anyway.


  14. Oh look! What an amazing surprise!!!

    The New Times has dodged almost certain closure this week by crowdfunding some 25 million rubles to pay off a government fine after an unprecedented show of support.

    The online magazine was handed a crippling fine in late October by the Russian media watchdog Roskomnadzor for failing to disclose foreign financing.

    “Russian people are very sensitive to injustice, we are a nation of survivors”, the magazine’s chief editor Yevgenia Albats said.

    So despite the fact that nobody reads it, 20 thousand people, according to another Western organ that nobody reads (see link below), stumped up the dosh for Albat’s electronic rag.

    Nov. 13 2018 – 17:11
    20K People Donate to Russian Liberal Outlet to Pay Government Fine

    i wonder where the money really came from?

    Probably from the same place that funds her publication and which she hasn’t revealed for the past 2 years, something that she legally has to, her electronic publication being classed as an NGO.

    That’s why she got whacked with a fine.

    Political persecution, I call it!

    Off to the ECHR with you, Yevgenia! You know they’ll find in your favour.


  15. «Традиционная политическая слепота»: в России отреагировали на принятие резолюции ООН по Крыму

    “Traditional political blindness”: Russia has responded to the adoption of the UN resolution on the Crimea

    In the Crimea, the adoption of the UN resolution on alleged human rights violations on the peninsula has been condemned. In the state Duma and the Federation Council, representatives of the region and local legislators are confident that the Ukraine, which presented this document to be voted on, is trying to present to the world the best image of itself that it can,whilst thos countries that support the position that the Ukraine has taken are displaying “political blindness”. RT interlocutors stressed that after the reunification with Russia, there had been created all the conditions for inhabitants of the peninsula regardless of their ethnic or religious affiliation. The Commissioner for human rights in the republic, Lyudmila Lubina, had invited UN representatives to visit the Crimea. They were convinced of the absence of violations. An earlier positive assessment of the situation in the region had been given by independent delegations from the United States, Germany, Italy and other countries.

    The Third Committee of the UN General Assembly, which is responsible for social, humanitarian and cultural issues, adopted a resolution proposed by the Ukraine that condemns alleged violations of human rights on Crimea territory.

    67 countries voted in support of the document, 26 against: 82 countries abstained. The number of countries that adhere to neutrality in this matter has increased: in the year 2017 in a similar situation, 76 countries abstained and in 2016 — 77.

    The text of the resolution was made in Kiev. It reported on the “illegal establishment of Russian Federation laws, jurisdiction and administration” in the region. According to the authors of the document, on the peninsula there is “increased pressure on communities of religious minorities, including frequent police raids, threats and harassment against supporters of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kiev Patriarchate and Protestant churches, mosques and Muslim religious schools, the Greek Catholics, the Roman Catholics and “Jehovah’s Witnesses”, and the “groundless prosecution of dozens of peaceful Muslims for their alleged affiliation to the Islamic organizations” was condemned

    “Uncompromising war with Russia”

    Deputy permanent representative of Russia to the UN, Gennady Kuzmin, commented on the content of the resolution, noting the aggressiveness of the text presented by the Ukraine.

    “The authors have tried hard to present the situation in the Crimea as a kind of armed conflict, using terms like “annexation”, and occupation”. According to this terminology, the Ukraine for four years has been waging an uncompromising war against Russia. But Russia has simply been part of this war: no one is going to quarrel with the Ukrainian people, who have the same blood ties. To punish the population of the Crimea for its choice in favouring Russia will not succeed”, he stressed.

    The Russian diplomat also pointed out that the referendum on the reunification of the Crimea with Russia was carried out strictly in accordance with international law.The inhabitants of the peninsula voted openly, expressing their desire “to live without the new Ukrainian idol: Bandera, Shukhevych and other Nazi collaborators” and to defend their right to education in and to speak freely in their native language: Russian, Ukrainian or Crimean Tatar.

    “No oppression. None”

    In the Crimea there is outrage over the text of the resolution. Representatives of the region in the Federation Council and the state Duma emphasize that the situation on the peninsula does not correspond to what is set out in the document.

    “There is neither oppression of religious minorities nor raids, arrests and persecution as regards freedom of speech and freedom of religion. Moreover, all conditions have been created to meet the needs of all religious communities”, said Sergey Tsekov, a member of the Federation Council Committee on International Affairs of the Republic of the Crimea in an interview with RT …

    The violations that were noted in the UN resolution have been created by the Ukraine, the “illusion of non-existent human rights abuses in the Crimea”, said Vice-Premier of the Crimean government, Dmitry Polonsky.

    “That political blindness has become a tradition for nearly 70 states (those that voted for the resolution.— RT) does not surprise anyone. This disease does not allow them to see the amazing extent of human rights violations in the Ukraine, which already for several years has been waging war against its own people on the territory of the Donbass”, said the Crimean government representative.


    1. Sadly, international institutions don’t really matter any more, since the ridiculous obeisance you have to show to gain their approval amounts to a complete abrogation of sovereignty. In this the USA has managed its greatest success in Ukraine; Washington chafes under the burden of upholding all the regulations it helped write in order to place hobbles on others, not itself, and now finds it has little use for international law or international regulation. So it has created the conditions for its irrelevance. Countries that pay their political figures high salaries to sit in the UN and bleat and blather are wasting their money; they should just remove their representatives and bring them home, and teach them some useful trade.


    2. Human rights evaluation by a popularity vote. What a joke! Give us real cases of abuse and not claims by Tatar clowns based outside Crimea. All of the sudden Crimean Tatars are the most precious minority in the world. They have to be given everything they demand or it is oppression. How come Canada’s native population gets to rot on reservation ghettos and nobody cares? America ripped up the last of the substantial treaties it had with the aboriginals during the 1960s and expropriated their lands. Last time I checked 2014 is not 1930 and nobody is in a rush to give the US aboriginals back their lands.


      1. All of it is designed to irritate Russia, with a secondary function of reassuring Ukraine that the west is in its corner. That’s pretty good value for money, when you think about it – the Ukies will go on struggling for the price of a pat on the head, and the west does not have to actually buy their stuff or support them beyond a couple of billion in emergency aid once a year or so. But the whole effort is gaining next to no traction at all; I can’t even remember the last time I saw Mustafa Dzemilev mugging with the adults, looking like a little wrinkled kid dressed in his dad’s clothes. Absent urgent entreaties from the Crimeans themselves, it all just looks like harassment. The west just has to do something for the Two Minutes Hate.



    Self-designated masters of technology create an epic screw-up. Maybe these clowns should spend less time laughing at Russia’s inferiority and spend more time using their brains.

    In case, it is not obvious what I am referring to look up various videos on YouTube making fun of Soviet cars from the 1970s and comparing them to the ubber technology of today’s western cars. Please give me the “primitive” cars of the past over the computer driven junk of today. Electronic throttle control, electronic engine ignition timing. And none of the software running the computers in the car (and clearly in this surgical robot) have any sanity checks. For example, the car computer should be able to probe all of its links and determine their functionality. If a connector is not properly plugged in during assembly, that is physically detectable and should be processed first before unexpectedly decelerating the car on the highway. This robot should not be able to engage in any movement that does not conform a clean instruction stream from the remote operator. It looks like as with the car computers, there is no sanity checking of the input signal and some connection glitch resulted in lethal movements.


    1. There is also a lot of conspiracy-theory discussion that computer controls in modern cars can be remotely accessed and given instructions that will remove accelerator control from the driver and deliberately crash it at high speed. I have no idea if that is possible, but it sounds feasible.

      Here’s an example.

      The hackers promised they would not do anything ‘life-threatening’. That does not mean they couldn’t.


      1. Much of that discussion revolves around the American journalist Michael Hastings’ death in a car crash, and the circumstances in which that crash occurred: for example, there were no skid marks left by the car and the car had apparently made a sharp 60-degree turn into a palm tree. Details of Hastings’ death remain vague and his body was so severely burned (in a fire that was unusually intense and which an eyewitness reported occurred BEFORE the crash) that the coroner took 2 days to identify him. The LAPD refused to release accident and/or toxicology reports on the car and would not allow an independent inspection of the vehicle despite asserting that foul play was not involved. Then there is the wider context of what Hastings had confided in work colleagues hours before the crash and what he was working on: he was convinced he was being trailed by the FBI and he had been researching a story on CIA capabilities in remotely manipulating and weaponising software.


        1. But the poor backward Russians still have to sneak into the country carrying Frankenstein perfume bottles filled with unstable and manifestly unreliable nerve agent made nowhere else in the world, or a radioactive element that leaves a four-lane highway of traces to Russia and which it takes the western authorities about five minutes to establish was made in a reactor in Moscow. When are the poor buggers going to get on the technology train? Then they might be a real menace to their neighbours.


    2. When you’re enjoying a cigarette in the new Citroen (with all the electric windows down) at the top of a 2000 ft hill in Ireland while the wife and daughter are placing a new stone on the cairn and the mother of all squalls races over and the window motor dies…
      Most convenience features get to seem pointless with 5 inches of rainwater in the well of the car.


      1. Yes, I read a critique once of the then newly-launched Pantera which said that the power door locks had no backup, so that in a catastrophe which removed the power – such as crashing into a tree – you could not release the door locks and so could not get out of the car. Difficult to imagine such a farseeing designer as De Tomaso would have overlooked such a detail, but you never know.

        De Tomaso, interestingly, has been owned by Hong Kong investors since 2015.



    Americans are exceptionally retarded. How does one “eavesdrop” on one’s own conversation? Should everyone who remembers any content of a discussion be sent to jail for “eavesdropping”. What is exactly the conceptual difference between a tape recorder and human memory? That one can be used as evidence and the other dismissed as “opinion”? What is exactly the point of this law then?


  18. On the figure skating front: Good news for Russia. Alina Zagitova won the short program at the Moscow stage of the Grand Prix. She racked up a personal and world record number of points for the short: 80.78
    Alina’s short program features a “Phantom of the Opera” theme.
    The long program competition takes place today (Saturday).


  19. The Times:

    Children’s show is propaganda for Putin, say critics
    November 17 2018, 12:01am,
    The Times

    Masha and the Bear is produced by a studio in Moscow

    A programme about a mischievous girl and a bear watched by millions of British children is accused of being a “soft propaganda” tool for the Kremlin (Mark Bridge writes). The English-language Masha and the Bear has more than 4.18 million subscribers on YouTube and, in various languages, the animated series has gained 40 billion views across 13 channels.

    Children enjoy watching the feisty little girl and her gentle giant protector. However, critics in Russia’s neighbouring states have claimed the series, from a Moscow studio, is part of the country’s propaganda machine. Professor Anthony Glees, of the University of Buckingham, an intelligence expert, said: “Masha is feisty, even rather nasty, but also plucky. She punches above her slight weight. It’s not far-fetched to to say that she’s acting like Putin”.

    As for the bear, the author recalled the position of the teacher of Tallinn University Priit Khybemyagi, who stated that this character is intended to “change the image of Russia in the minds of children from negative to positive.” Khybemyagi considered this to be a threat to n national security .

    At the same time, the Lithuanian critics were confused by the USSR border guard cap Masha wears in an episode where she is chasing a hare out of the bear’s garden. They decided that in this way Russia was demonstrating “the defence of its border”.

    From the most prestigious of British “quality” newspapers.

    For your delight and delectation, Episode 58 of Masha and the Bear:

    GяеетIиgs Fяom Яussia! We Will Бuяy You!


      1. M younger daughter loves it, as did her elder sister.

        It’s better in Russian because they talk.

        The episode below is called: “THe border is locked tight”.

        That’ll make them Estonians feel, I don’t know….threatened?


        1. And I do believe that the above episode, showing Masha wearing a Soviet cap and the hare being chased off beyond the garden fence, is the one that the Estonian Tallinn university lecturer (not “teacher” as I wrote above) finds so intimidating to lovers of freedom and democracy, in that it demonstrates to all in the free world how Russians consider their borders to be inviolable..

          What evil swine they are!


            1. Back in the late 1960s the highlight of early Thursday evening children’s TV on BBC1 was “Tales From Europe” half-hour programmes which ranged from elaborate versions of folk tales to bizarre Czech animations. There were plenty of Eastern Bloc offerings and no-one bothered.
              Masha’s American voice is horrible.


              1. Yes, as I have stated many times before, the Snow Queen in the 1957 Soviet cartoon of Anderson’s tale, totally corrupted me: I fell madly in love with her coldness and stern beauty. I was only 8 or 9 years old.


          1. It’s a lame, very late response to Ariel Dorfman’s classic critique “How to Read Donald Duck.”

            In truth, the investigation doesn’t go far enough in my view. There’s no doubt that the mole in Cambridge Circus was responsible for the malfunction of the Autochef…


    1. Any demented paranoia against Russians and Russia is “legit” no matter how obviously detached from reality it is. When these hater clowns find some sort of actual pro-Putin message in this show, then they should call and let us know. Until then, their dementia-driven drivel does not deserve the time of day.


    2. Not at all familiar with “Masha and the Bear” but I have seen all three cartoons in the old Soviet animated series of Winnie the Pooh on Youtube. While the animation might look simple, even crude, the character of Winnie the Pooh is complex, even cunning and conniving, and definitely much better than the Disney simpleton version.



      …The making of a terror ‘expert’

      In the course of 2005, Glees emerged as a ‘terrorism expert’ consulted by the media. He appears to have emerged as an expert after the London bombings on 7 July 2005, when he was consulted as an ‘intelligence expert’ to comment on the alleged failure of the intelligence services to predict that attack. [6] By this time Glees had spent several months compiling a report for the right wing think-tank the Social Affairs Unit on extremism in British Universities. [7]

      According to his profile at the consultancy Alpha Intelligence Management, Glees has been ‘an official adviser to the European Parliament on counter-terrorism and security policy’ since 2002…

      Plenty more at the link. Check out the references:

      Anthony Glees, ‘Internment should be a policy option’ Independent, 19 October 2006

      For me, the most interesting thing about it all is that this was published by The Times’s technology correspondent. It yet again goes to show that Russophobia has filtered down to all levels as acceptable. In the old days it would be witch hunting or jew hunting or whatever the sport du jour. As usual, this is all sanctioned from above and nobody has to face the consequence of their behavior, ergo it is ok. Morals? Ethics? Nah, it’s sport. Whether Bridge pitched this story and it was accepted by the editors or passed on to him as something of interest is irrelevant. The cogs in the machine go round and round, all functioning to power the big meat mincer at the end. It’ll all be over by Christmas, hurrah!


  20. America Watchers….You should read this…you really should!!! :

    “As the World Socialist Web Site explained in 2000, the Republican theft of the presidential election, and the spineless capitulation of the Democrats to the Supreme Court ruling in Bush v. Gore, demonstrated that there was no longer any significant constituency within the US ruling elite for basic constitutional and democratic norms. The defense of democratic rights—including the most elementary democratic right, the right to vote—depended on the independent intervention of the working class, fighting against all sections of the capitalist class and both of its political parties.

    The 18 years that have passed since the Florida election crisis have seen an intensifying assault on democratic rights, under both Democratic and Republican administrations. This build-up of a police state infrastructure—the Patriot Act, the Northern Command, the Homeland Security Department, mass surveillance, Guantanamo, indefinite detention, drone assassinations—has been carried out under conditions of unending war and the supposed requirements of the “global war on terror.”

    This steady shift to the right finds its reactionary culmination in the current administration. President Trump has deployed American troops to the Mexican border, ordered tens of thousands of immigrants detained in tent cities and declared his intention to issue an executive order rescinding birthright citizenship, guaranteed for 150 years under the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution. He glorifies police brutality and regularly incites violence against his political critics in both parties and the press. After a bullying performance at his most recent press conference, Trump ordered the White House to revoke the press credentials of Jim Acosta of CNN and threatened similar treatment to three other reporters, all African-American women.

    In demanding that Florida’s Senate seat and governorship be awarded to his favored candidates, regardless of the will of the people, Trump is not just reprising what took place in 2000. He is giving a glimpse of what Election Day 2020 and its immediate aftermath could look like, particularly if the election is closely contested.”

    Just sit back for a moment and take in the fact that this guy-Trump-ACTUALLY stated that the Florida vote counting should stop and his (Republican) people be declared wnners!!


    1. As usual the comments of dmorista ,Ruse and Zaremba’s are spot on:

      dmorista • 2 days ago
      An excellent article, with sound analysis of the difference between the Florida events of 2000 as contrasted to the Florida events of 2018. The article’s statement: “This build-up of a police state infrastructure—the Patriot Act, the Northern Command, the Homeland Security Department, mass surveillance, Guantanamo, indefinite detention, drone assassinations—has been carried out under conditions of unending war and the supposed requirements of the ‘global war on terror’.” is right on the mark; except it omits the proverbial elephant in the room — the 9/11 terrorist events — that were the excuse not only for the ongoing police state developments, but also for the “War on Terror” itself, that has been a key pillar of the transition from a somewhat open society to an authoritarian state. It is also worth noting that the massive multi-trillion dollar cost of the round of wars the U.S. initiated since 9/11 used up all the resources that could have been used, even under capitalism, to address the crumbling U.S. physical and social infrastructure. Thereby making it necessary to institute a harsh internal police state to try to suppress domestic unrest and political mobilization by working people.

      It is certainly at least a plausible argument to say that the most extreme right-wing elements of the U.S. ruling class needed to get Bush the Younger selected President; by using the outrageous and clearly fraudulent manner of an anomalous Supreme Court ruling, that stopped the vote count in Florida and installed the Bush/Cheney Regime. The plans for the 9-11 attack were in an advanced state of development at that time, and the installation of the most right-wing pro-Zionist regime possible was necessary, to ensure that the U.S. government would respond with military attacks, rather than a comprehensive criminal investigation of what had happened. Any serious investigation would have turned up a very different set of suspects, rather than the absurd list of Saudi malcontents, supposedly commanded from a cave in Afghanistan. Gore was not as reliable a stooge for the initiation of the “Global War on Terrorism”, while Bush/Cheney were ready with a huge lineup of warmongers and Zionists to staff the relevant policy posts, ready to go on the attack.

      Another important precedent from the past to consider for the 2020 Presidential and general election is the run-up to Nixon’s 1972 re-election. There was serious discussion at that time, in Nixon’s coterie, of setting off a couple of small bombs on the floor of the Republican National Convention in San Diego, and killing off a few low-level Republican functionaries. Then that event could have been used as a pretext to cancelling the 1972 elections. Cooler heads prevailed and the 1972 Republican National Convention, that was moved to Miami, proceeded to be held normally.

      The official story now being promulgated is that the recounts in Florida are very unlikely to end up changing the outcome. While that is probably true for the machine recount in the race for Governor, it is much more likely that a hand recount will displace Scott. As usual, there are large numbers of provisional ballots cast by people who have been removed from the voter rolls by various types of voter suppression techniques. Since there are many sources of inaccuracies in vote tallying and numerous reasons for legally valid ballots arriving late, there are still plenty of ballots to count, for the first time. These can easily be decisive in such a close election. There is more attention given to the outrageous role of Brian Kemp in the Georgia Governor’s election, but in fact Florida became a majority Democratic Party/Left Liberal state years ago and the reactionary majority is only maintained by various types of subterfuges. The end of the lifetime loss of the vote by non-violent felons in Florida (all imposed on low-level and poor criminals of course, the high-level wealthy felons, including Scott himself a major medical scam criminal, are never charged for their immensely larger and more serious crimes), will decisively change the state’s electoral politics in the future; and probably put it pretty solidly in the “blue state” category. Other demographic/voter changes in Florida include reactionary older whites still moving into the state to retire and some Latin American reactionaries coming into the state fleeing the chaos created by U.S. imperialist activities in Venezuela, Honduras, and other places. However something like half a million Puerto Ricans, who are pretty solidly Democratic Party voters moved to the Mainland U.S. since the hurricanes, and many of them moved to Florida.

      Of course the Senate is important to the Trump/McConnell agenda of filling the Federal Courts with as many Federalist Society reactionaries as possible. This would make recourse to court orders, to stop some of the most egregious actions taken by voter suppression campaigns and election fraud operations that change the tallies to support the farthest right candidates, much less effective. The campaign to stack the Federal Courts with reactionaries also bodes very ill for any legal challenges to attacks on workers rights, internet freedom, and other civil rights issues. As is usually the case, Bill Nelson is no major champion of the rights of the common people, but he is certainly somewhat better than Rick Scott the embezzler.”

      And this comment on the Acosta kabuki theatre of the poor thing – a Fourth Estate First Amendment freedom fighter extraordinaire-being muzzled by Trump:

      ” ben franklin [pre death] лидия • 2 days ago

      Yes. Let’s not give in to the theatrics that were on display with that little spat in the WH press room. The only individuals allowed in that room are those “journalists” who have proven to be imperialist supporters and capitalist stooges married to the corrupt bourgeois political system and usually heavily vetted by the intelligence community.

      The control of the press access to the WH press room has been very severe for decades. Furthermore the general control of news media by the owners OF the press is indisputable and represents the control and corruption at the very core of the so-called free press. Once again, Trump simply personifies all the existing BS and contradictions just in a more blatant and boorish fashion. This little performance also enhances the PR campaign that CNN and mainstream media is somehow on the front lines in a war against corruption and disintegration of democratic values. Orwell would even blush.”

      Absolutely!!!!! LOL!!!


  21. TheRealNews
    Published on 15 Nov 2018
    As Britain’s Theresa May inches closer towards a final Brexit agreement, for leaving the European Union, behind the scenes it is not quite the compromise politicians and the media make it out to be, says economist John Weeks


  22. So she does have a voice in English then? I have not played long enough those versions designed for indoctrinating children of the Free World so as to hear her speaking in English. One thing I notice, though, is that although Masha is allegedly “feisty”, as the Times article states (she just seems to be a characature of a normal little girl to me), there is no in-your-face feminist agenda in the malicious Soviet Russian cartoons (computer graphics, really) that are beamed out to the Free West under the orders of the Evil One, though a certain species of Western “wimmin” might think that is the “message” of these little tales. Children here just watch the Masha stories and enjoy them. So do I. I have always liked them.


      1. Авторы “Маши и Медведя” ответили на обвинения в кремлевской пропаганде
        00:46 18.11.2018 (обновлено: 02:29 18.11.2018)

        The authors of “Masha and the Bear” have responded to accusations of Kremlin propaganda

        MOSCOW, November 18 – RIA News. The authors of the animated series “Masha and the Bear” and the Russian Embassy in the UK have reacted to an article in the Times about the alleged presence of propaganda in this work.

        Earlier, there had appeared in the publication material, in which critics called the Russian animated series “Masha and the Bear” part of “Kremlin propaganda” as well as an instrument of “soft power.”
        The newspaper in particular cited the opinion of Anthony Glees, a professor at Buckingham University, who pointed out Masha’s assertiveness and determination. According to the professor: “It would not be an exaggeration to say that she behaves like Putin” and “takes too much upon herself”.

        “An important issue was raised by @thetimes today: how can the UK find salvation from ‘Masha and the Bear?’ ” the Embassy noted on Twitter.

        Diplomats sarcastically suggested such solutions to the “problem” as opening a special anti-animation centre in the Baltic, as well as placing all caricaturists on the EU sanctions list.

        “Obviously, a determined and very expensive approach is needed!” the diplomatic representation concluded.

        In the “Animakkord” studio, where the series is made, they also commented on the article. As the head of the studio, Dmitry Lovyeiko, noted, this material can only be responded to with a great deal of irony.

        He stressed that Animakkord is a commercial project that does not receive government funding. Lovyeiko added that the creators of the series did not mean to create any political parallels.

        The number of subscribers to the English-language channel of the animated series on the YouTube service to date has exceeded 4.2 million.

        Do they not realize in the UK what “absoluetly blithering idiots” (that’s ‘stupid c*nts’ in vulgar parlance) they are continuously making of thereselves with this inane russophobia of theirs?


        Stupid question.


          1. PS

            KeithBritton is not my alter ego! 🙂

            I have neither grandchildren nor great-grandchildren!

            My 10-year-old daughter Sasha loves “Masha and the Bear”, though — as did my two elder children.


            1. I can’t believe, based on my experience, that everyone in the UK (and Canada and the USA) is totally demented. The NATzO MSM is detaching itself from reality and in the processes slowly rendering itself irrelevant. But in the near term it still controls too many sheeple.


            2. There must not be very many good children’s TV programs being produced now in Britain if The London Times prints a hysterical article about “Masha and the Bear” being an extension of Russian soft power, trying to weaponise small children’s brains.

              What happened to all the good British children’s TV programs that used to be produced? Apart from Peppa the Pig, there don’t seem to be many such programs still screening.


    1. Tantalizing, indeed; but it would make sense to question everyone involved, and nothing should be inferred from this. Only the watch on deck would be up and around at that time of the morning, and all the voices heard on the audio exchange between the Ingstad, the tanker and the Maritime Center were male (or sounded that way to me) and speaking what I presume was Norwegian. The radar display clearly showed a building collision presentation and the Ingstad was doing an excessive rate of speed for the situation; anyone who can read a radar display could grasp that immediately. The voices heard on the radio are not necessarily those of the persons involved in decision-making, but there appeared to be a complete lack of awareness, at least in the sense that nobody appeared to be alarmed aboard the frigate.


  23. My latest oeuvre, it’s about the prominent rape case in Ufa, Bashkortostan, Russian Federation.
    Executive summary: a couple of weeks ago a 23-year old policewoman was gang-raped by 3 of her senior colleagues. She filed a criminal complaint, the 3 were fired and placed under arrest. The story is gathering momentum in the Russian press.



    Professional victims. And supposedly since I am “white” (a racist lumping category) I share the guilt of US slave owners and every day and success I have is 100% at the expense of some oppressed minority due to my “white privilege”. Eastern Europeans do not get white privilege. They get discrimination. Both the US and UK froth at the mouth with hate at Russians and Russia.


    1. “As WIBW noted, officials did not define what that entailed, but we are sure it will involve group hugs, safe-spaces, and “it’s-the-environment-that-did-it” excuses.”

      Quire a bit like the recent decision by Canada’s justice system to send convicted child-murderer Terri-Lynne McClintic to a ‘healing lodge’ instead of a prison term, because she claims First-Nations ancestry. To be fair, many of the outraged complainants were First Nations themselves. So great was the public fury at this coddling that the justice system had to row back, pretend that some low-level staffer had made a mistake, and bung her in prison after all.


  25. Nice video putting a frame on SJW PC hysteria.

    1) The ratio of female professors by definition reflects the ratio of female students. So if there are “not enough” women professors, then the implicit claim is that all the women are superior to the men. In my experience the number of females entering hard core physics and mathematics is small. That is an objective fact and not discrimination. When I was in undergrad I did not see females being filtered out through sexism. Tests and exams are not sexist and universities are supposed to be based on meritocratic foundations. It would be very difficult for a professor or teaching assistant to falsely mark any test or exam since there is a process to contest marks. A brilliant exam result cannot be buried. In the real world, most of the contention over marking is petty.

    2) When I publish papers I cite female led papers without any consideration for gender. What draws me to a paper is its content and not the sex organs of the authors. In fact, some of the best papers I have seen in my research area had female lead authors. In the data cited by the video, the fact that gender is a non-issue for scientists is patently obvious as both genders end up citing the same papers. The SJW scumbags screeching over white male patriarchy are retarded and clueless about what science is. Unlike the basket weaving areas such as gender studies, in real science papers are about working hard to produce innovative results. No circle jerk regurgitation is involved. There is simply no time and point in using gender of authors for anything.


    1. Kirill, out of curiosity, (1) where did you get your alleged PhD; and (2) what exactly is your research specialty?
      I mean, aside from your Nobel-prize winning research in the field of Trotskyite Phonology (?)


  26. Follow up:

    The Register: Super Micro chief bean counter: Bloomberg’s ‘unwarranted hardware hacking article’ has slowed our server sales


    Dontcha just love unnamed sources? Whatever happened to maxim Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence? Doesn’t apply to bigots and ‘phobes, obvs.


    1. Your link goes to some clown advocating for internment. Scratch a NATzO resident and you find a concentration camp supporter. NATzO should never be called NATO.


        1. Bloomturd is exuding a ripe fake news stench. Supermicro has its motherboards assembled in China from commercially available ICs (e.g. Intel or AMD CPUs, chipsets, IO controllers and simple graphics chips). China would have to replace those components with fakes. The problem is that these fakes would be easy to identify since they would not function identically to the original parts. Given the number of Supermicro customers, at some stage any spy signal stream would be identified. Buyers or servers aren’t your typical consumers playing games. Servers these days are assembled into massive compute clusters with Infiniband or other high performance interconnect fabric HBAs and switches. Some parasite signal trying to reach China would be a serious issue from hundreds or thousands of compromised motherboards. And that is ignoring the fact that these systems are not directly attached to the internet.

          Bloomturd is peddling pulp fiction along the lines of “we found Cyrillic characters which proves Russian hackers hacked us”. There is no way for some hardware hack to dial out of a LAN to China. It needs for software/OS configurations to allow such outside access. If I am a paranoid tech developer, I will make sure my designs are sitting on machines with strict access control. Like I said, were not dealing with consumers playing games and double clicking exe files.

          Before appealing to fantasy fiction, the NATzO MSM should focus on real security issues. None of the email that is sent globally is secure. None of it, unless it is encoded. The internet is a public toilet and network traffic can be intercepted (invisibly, since it is not stopped but copied) by anyone, anywhere and at any time.


          1. Bloomturd has backed itself in to a corner. Yes, some sources need to be protected in journalism, but theirs is one who is at risk of neither life nor limb, just some unnamed ‘intelligence’ source that has of its own volition offered ‘evidence’ to Bloomturd (on request?).

            If the Pork Pie News Networks start claiming national security exemptions for their thinly (from official) sourced stories, then what’s the point of them? Why go the extra step when they could just print ‘Unnamed intelligence source’ verbatim and leave it at that? To protect a veneer of democracy or legitimacy of the Filth Estate?

            Again, it is open season on the USA’s enemies and those that should know better prefer to go with the flow rather than question or ignore such bs. Self-censorship?


    2. Interesting. The harder activists advocate for adoption of government controls which model the idealized Soviet Union, the more they characterize themselves as independent thinkers operating on a higher plane than the rest of us. But of course, when they think of it, it is not totalitarian at all, but ‘leaning forward’. But Vladimir Putin is authoritarian.

      Apparently, according to current ‘leaning forward’ thinking, the way to beat Putin is to out-authoritarian him. Of course a British government granted the power to intern people without trial would never abuse such authority. Because it is just too good.


  27. Technical Issues in Her Majesty’s Canadian Ships

    Over the past two weeks there have been a series of technical issues that have affected deployed Royal Canadian Navy ships. Specifically, there have been two fires in gas turbine enclosures, power failures, and a loss of propulsion.

    The fact that there have been this many instances in such a short period of time is of significant concern to the Royal Canadian Navy. The safety of our personnel at sea is of primary importance. Simply put our sailors need to have confidence in the technical readiness of their ships. ..

    The only one that looks like a bit of a worry is the total loss of power on the HMCS Toronto.


    1. No hysterical media pieces on what a failure Canada is. When the Russian navy experiences delays in ship deliveries due to over-booked ship production and technical issues associated with new designs (not cookie cutter reproductions) we have death chants in both the NATzO and Russian MSM.


    2. The problem probably is that the Diesel Generators (DG’s) are shit. There are four which together supply the ship’s electrical power, and all four are almost never working. HMCS CALGARY spent a month alongside in Singapore after limping in on one DG with almost no power available, and FSR’s (Field Service Representatives) had to be flown in. You might think a month in Singapore would be a dream come true for a sailor, and indeed it might be if he made two or three times the money. Singapore is expensive, and you run out of funds quickly unless your idea of fun is taking long walks in the tropical heat. About two years later (2008), the same thing happened to HMCS REGINA, although we were fixed and back out to sea much faster. When we came into Changi we were on red interior night lighting and had all the power hogs like the search radars shut down.

      Warships, however, regularly exercise complete loss of electrical power. It’s hard on the equipment, so when it’s just a drill they usually warn everyone in advance so they can shut down the equipment before it has a hard failure; electronics don’t like hard shutdowns. But all systems aboard are supposed to be manufactured to take that kind of abuse. Most combat systems have what’s called a ‘battle short’ which in the event of actual combat damage would allow you to bypass all the safeties that would otherwise shut down overheating systems, and just run them until they burn up.


      1. At least the HMCS vessels have the “battle short” concept inbuilt. Here in landbound Blighty we enjoy (Thanks, Thatcher, Major, Bliar, Broon etc) PPI hospitals in which no provision was made for electricity demand in operating theatres in use…


      2. Thanks for the info. Found pix here of Toronto AMR during refit:

        ..The primary inhabitants of these two rooms are four 850 kW Deutz MWM diesel generators that provide electrical power to the ship…


        So, formally German, owned by Caterpillar since 2011.

        Buuuut, according to the following page this seems to be the original fit:

        4 × 850kW AEG Telefunken generators

        …It was announced by the Department of National Defence that Hewitt Equipment was chosen to replace the diesel generators aboard the Halifax-class vessels in June 2015.
        Due to be replaced by…

        So this happened after the refit?

        At least its not this:


  28. The “Long Read” in yesterday’s not so independent “Independent” [paywall]:

    In Poland, Nato military drills brace against the unspoken threat of Putin
    Russian aggression along Europe’s eastern border has Nato ramping up training efforts in anticipation of all manner of warfare – from cyber to chemical. William Cook experiences Poland’s biggest Nato operation first hand

    Smoke billows across the battlefield, obscuring the armoured cars ahead of us. A Polish soldier keels over, then another, and then another. Military hardware is no use here – this is a chemical attack. Army ambulances race through the acrid fog to evacuate the casualties. If you’d arrived here unawares, you’d never know this was just a drill – it all feels frighteningly real. Welcome to Drawsko Pomorskie, the biggest military training ground in Europe. And welcome to Anakonda 18, Poland’s biggest Nato exercise.

    Anakonda 18 features 17,500 soldiers from 10 Nato members: 12,500 here in Poland, plus 5,000 more in parallel exercises in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. It’s no surprise that these military exercises are happening here. This is the site of Nato’s “Enhanced Forward Presence”: four combat-ready battlegroups, stationed in these four eastern European countries, supporting the defence forces of each of these countries with over 4,000 foreign troops. The multinational makeup of these battlegroups underlines the significance of Article 5 of Nato’s founding treaty, which states that an armed attack against one of its members constitutes an attack against them all.

    I’d tagged along on a couple of these Nato exercises before, and though no two are alike, one thing never changes: nobody mentions Vladimir Putin, but his malign influence is everywhere. “Nato exercises are not directed against any country,” reads the disclaimer in my Nato press pack. “They are based on fictitious scenarios with fictitious adversaries.” Yet Putin is omnipresent, the ghost at every feast. A few years ago, he boasted that Russian troops could be in five Nato capitals in two days. He was too coy to name them, but you can be sure they included the capitals of Poland and the Baltic states.

    However, the Russian threat isn’t confined to conventional warfare, and Anakonda 18 bears this out. Putin’s invasion of Crimea was overt, but Russian incursions into eastern Ukraine have been more enigmatic – non-uniformed insurgents operating as so-called “freedom fighters”, what commentators in the Baltic states call “little green men”.

    Today’s drill is preparation for this sort of threat: an improvised assault by covert operatives using poison gas made from stolen fertilizer. Ukraine isn’t a Nato member, so Russia could occupy Crimea safe in the knowledge that Nato wouldn’t be compelled to retaliate. Here on Nato’s eastern flank, Putin needs to be more canny. For Poland, Article 5 is a powerful insurance policy – but like the cyberwar that Russia has waged so successfully in the Baltic states, there are many ways to destabilise a nation without making an “armed attack”.

    And on and on it goes in like manner …

    Russia currently has soldiers in three countries – Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine – without the consent of their governments….

    Russian aggression along Europe’s eastern border has given Nato a much-needed wake-up call …

    Next year it’ll be 20 years since Poland joined Nato, a real cause for celebration, but as I headed for home it was the sober, sombre words of Anakonda 18’s exercise commander, Major General Tomasz Piotrowski, which stayed with me. He explained the purpose of the exercise with the studied neutrality of the career soldier (“hybrid threats emerging along the eastern flank of Nato and, of course, activation of Article 5 to conduct high intensity warfare”) but when I asked him about the background to this exercise, his comments were more stark. He talked about cyber-attacks against Estonia, open warfare in Georgia and instability in eastern Ukraine. He didn’t mention Russia – he didn’t need to. Everyone at this press conference knew the name of the elephant in the room. As Nato’s press office always points out, Nato exercises are based on fictitious scenarios with fictitious adversaries. Here’s hoping these exercises are sufficient preparation if that fiction ever becomes fact.

    One comment so far:

    The American journalist Paul Jay described, in an interview, meeting representatives of western arms firms at the 2012 Munich security conference; although NATO, in breach of undertakings given to Michael Gorbachov, that had expanded eastwards to Russia’s borders, they were in despair. Arms sales were still declining. Shortly afterwards, as boasted by Victoria Nuland, the US spent four billion dollars ’influencing’ Ukraine, leading to the Maidan protests, the coup and a new government whose Prime Minister Nuland is on (audio) record as having chosen. At least three new ministers were from the neo-fascist far right. This led to protests and occupations, particularly in the east; the new far-right government quickly sent armed troops to quell civil disturbances, leading to civil war.

    The EU fact-finding mission on the conflict between Georgia and Russia (suppression of local indigenous minority, suppression of local language, closure of native-language schools, attacks on civilians, invasion of the territory and murder of UN-mandated Russian peace-keeping troops) concluded that Georgia (led by Saakashvili) was to blame.

    The far-right, in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Ukraine, Poland, Hungary and Georgia, with support from NATO and the American government, is on the march again in Eastern Europe. These countries suppress languages other than their own, and continue to deny citizenship to tens of millions of Russian-speakers who have lived in these countries for generations.

    This article ignores these inconvenient facts. Russia has not created this new cold war. Printing propaganda pieces for NATO and the big arms companies is not an appropriate role for an ’independent’ newspaper.

    Clearyl mailed from Savushkina Street!


    1. The lunatics in NATzO are planning a war on Russia. That is why they are buttering up the sheeple with transparent rubbish propaganda pieces. For some reason these lunatics believe they will win the war. For the last 1000 years this has been a standard feature of western decision making. But in every case they lose. Russia is much more prepared to take on NATzO today than the USSR was prepared to take on the Nazis in 1940. In fact, in the nuclear missile era, NATzO has no advantage over Russia whatsoever. There is no “blitzkrieg” that NATzO could launch. It would be “blitzkrieg”ed in return.

      But what I say is considered delusional inanity by YouTube snot nosed “experts”. So perhaps it is not surprising that the NATzO elites think the same way. Apples don’t fall far from trees.


    1. This calls to mind Russia’s deal with Iran, in which Russia will trade food, medicines and what necessities Iran desires but which American-imposed sanctions make difficult to obtain, for Iranian oil and gas which Russia will use domestically. Countries are reverting to the barter system to nullify US sanctions in a way that does not use currency flow the USA might try to interdict or confiscate. No actual money changes hands, so America can snoop on SWIFT to its heart’s content without seeing evidence of promising targets. Striking, too, is the prevalence of real sympathy for Iran and an evident desire to help it with its problems. The USA has apparently bitten off more than it can chew here, and several nations are openly flouting its rules. If America cannot think of a way to come down hard on them, their example may become contagious.


  29. From VZGLIAD this morning: Browder reacts to accusations of Russian Prosecutor.

    Just this morning (Monday 19 Nov) the Russian prosecutor’s office opened a criminal case against William Browder. He is accused of (1) organizing a criminal gang, (2) poisoning his gang member Sergei Magnitsky, and (3) also killing several other members of the gang. It is alleged that Browder used military-level “diversionary chemical substances” [whatever that is] mixed to aluminium, to form the poison.

    Browder denies the charges, and also points the finger at Major-General Alexander Prokopchuk of the Russian Federation police. Prokopchuk is in the running to become head of Interpol. Which, if he does, he said he will pursue Bill Browder to the ends of the earth, and nowhere on this planet will it be safe for him any more.
    Which is why Browder is worried about Prokopchuk’s nomination.


    1. Now we know why the UK staged the Skripal farce. It is a redirection attempt to make Browder look like a victim. The fallout of Browder being convicted of using chemical weapons from criminal purposes would make NATzO look bad since NATzO invested itself in his “victimhood” and elevated the corrupt accountant Magnitsky into a human rights martyr saint.


  30. RIA via Woman blows herself up near police station in Chechen capital Grozny

    Nov. 17

    A young woman blew herself up on Saturday near a police checkpoint in the Chechen capital Grozny in southern Russia but nobody else was killed or injured, RIA news agency said.

    Police asked her to stop and present her documents but when she refused to obey they saw she was carrying a home-made explosive device. They fired a warning shot and she detonated the device, Interfax news agency reported…


  31. Bloomturd: Here’s One Measure That Shows Sanctions on Russia are Working

    Sanctions may have knocked as much as 6 percent off Russia’s economy over the past four years and the drag isn’t likely to go away anytime soon.

    A new study by Bloomberg Economics has found that the economy of the world’s biggest energy exporter is more than 10 percent smaller compared with what might have been expected at the end of 2013, before the Crimea crisis triggered wave after wave of restrictions by the U.S. and EU. While some of the blame falls on the slump in oil prices, sanctions are the bigger culprit….

    …“The underperformance has been much bigger than crude alone can explain,” wrote Scott Johnson, an analyst at Bloomberg Economics in London. “Part of the gap is likely to reflect the enduring impact of sanctions both imposed and threatened over the last five years.”..

    …They admit that part of the 6 percent gap could be attributed to other shocks, such as the introduction of inflation targeting and a sell-off in emerging markets…

    More anal-cysts at the link & my extra emphasis not to mention more qualifiers in the article too boot.

    Timely ‘proof’ that USA still runs the world and can punish people? Hardly a surprise but they could have also pointed to not so great EU economic performance and its effect, but what would be the point in that? Is it a) keep the sanction up and Russia will collapse/change its foreign policy etc.? b) no need for more far reaching sanctions that could lead to Boeing/ULA being stranded etc.? c) filler and fluff? d) Bloomturd shilling for business after their Supermicro debacle?

    Again, what’s the point? What’s it trying to prove?

    If anything, de-dollarization and accelerating ties with the growing Asia-Pacific region is very good for Russia, even if there is some initial short term pain inflicted by others. If I do have a problem with Russia, it is that it seems to be cautious and then reactionary by nature – or is this more institutionally safe behavior?


    1. I smell GDP growth shenanigans at GKS. Hellevig had a piece earlier that debunked the claim of a 1.3% GDP growth in the first quarter of 2018 and estimated that it was closer to 6%. He was a bit too optimistic but the point is that 1.5% annual GDP growth (roughly 6%/4years) is falling through the cracks and likely deliberately.

      I believe Putin introduced a misinformation campaign late in his first term in regards to GDP growth in Russia to keep NATzO confused about Russia’s resurgence. The CIA was not doing a good job estimating the Russian GDP, so Putin could fake the numbers and NATzO triumphalists would lap them up with glee. I think this policy was smart and actually worked. That is why in 2014 Obama was certain the Russia’s economy would collapse from the sanctions. Read the articles in the NATzO MSM from 2014 and even through 2017 which assumed that massive damage to Russia’s economy was a given.

      By keeping NATzO ignorant of Russia’s actual potential, it could re-arm and regroup in peace. I think it would have been bad for Russia if the events of 2014 happened in 2004. In 2004, the Russian defense industry physical plant was still in sad shape and collapsing. This condition was basically rectified by 2014. And Russia was also able to deploy its new hypersonic wunderwaffen. Anyone who thinks such machinations are tin foil hat nonsense does not know the history leading up to WWII. The USSR managed to delay the attack of the Nazis by 2 years which allowed it to increase its military potential by 40% and to move defense factories to the Urals.

      Today Putin is pretending that NATzO sanctions are actually working when it is patently obvious that they are not. This is ***physically*** apparent in Russia as import substitution occurs on a massive scale. Since every dollar imports saved amounts to two dollars of domestic production (one for local production and one for not exporting the dollar and incurring a negative GDP accounting penalty) Russia’s GDP growth should be over 4%. But you would think that nothing was happening in terms of import substitution and that Russia’s economy was running cool and near recession. The employment statistics show that this is not the reality. If the economy was near stagnation, the unemployment rate would go up. Low unemployment occurs when the economy runs hot.

      The way that Russia’s GDP statistics are skewed is through the official CPI and PPI. Nabiullina at the CBR claims that Russia is has serious inflationary instability. That is why the prime rate is over three times the actual CPI (7.5% vs 2.3%). I have posted before why there is no evidence of 1970s style South American inflation in Russia given the extremely short lived inflation spike after the late 2014 ruble forex devaluation; the spike was force-damped and did not have any recurring peaks after the initial one. Under real inflationary conditions a 7.5% prime rate would do didley squat and, in fact, there is no magic prime rate that controls the inflation. If it is set too high, the inflation actually increases. Also, if Russia’s economy was running cool there would not be any need for a 7.5% rate since it would push the economy into a recession. So reality indicates that Russia’s economy is actually running hot and this has some inflationary pressure but also means that 1.3% GDP growth numbers are BS.


      1. Today Putin is pretending that NATzO sanctions are actually working when it is patently obvious that they are not.

        I suspect that he is not the only one. There’s a whole host of other sanctions that the West has studiously avoided putting on Russia because of the damage that would be done to itself, not to mention that it would always like to have a few extra sanctions to dangle publicly/privately or both at will.

        Vis the Bloomturd report, do they expect someone to pay for it? When you click on the link to the ‘report’ you get:

        The article you requested is only available for Bloomberg Professional Service subscribers.

        The article you requested is only available for Bloomberg Professional Service subscribers.

        Uh-huh. Who exactly is their target audience again?


  32. Politico (EU): Libyan fund: 5 EU countries released Gaddafi’s frozen money

    Despite sanctions, Libyan Investment Authority says UK, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg and Belgium all released cash.

    …The LIA said in an emailed statement to POLITICO that Belgium’s government was not alone in taking advantage of a loophole by paying out the interest earned on the frozen money.

    “In many jurisdictions (the UK, Belgium, Germany, Italy and Luxembourg for example) the interest and dividends on holdings frozen under the U.N. sanctions are not frozen,” the LIA said through its London-based PR agency Maitland.

    The statement also sought to deflect mounting questions about why Belgium decided to unfreeze funds from accounts managed by Euroclear, a financial institution headquartered in Brussels….

    More at the link.

    This stinks. Why is everyone being so coy? What we do know is that whilst western states are more than happy to destroy other countries, they are not so happy to have to pony up for smashing everything up in giftshop. I suspect that the money is going to a) western companies who had contracts (weapons/whatever) with Libya prior to their government’s taking part in Libya’s regime change; and b) it is being used to fund the ‘UN recognized Libyan parliament’ that has absolutely no control on the ground and has to pay protection money to militias. I could imagine how embarrassing this would be if some real journalists published the facts. Still waiting.


  33. Further to Yalensis’ comment above …

    Генпрокуратура: Магнитский отравлен по приказу Браудера диверсионными химвеществами

    Prosecutor General: Magnitsky chemically poisoned as a diversion on Browder’s orders

    You dirty Russian rats can’t pin that goddam rap on me!!!

    A new criminal case has been opened in the Russian Federation against William Browder, founder of the Hermitage Capital Foundation, international financial speculator, lobbyist for anti-Russian sanctions and a sponsor of a significant part of the Russian liberal opposition.

    Details revealed at a special briefing organized by the Office of the Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation.

    Browder has been accused of creating a criminal organization (part 1 of article 210 of the criminal code), which had been operating since 1999, which was formed for “committing serious economic crimes on Russian territory and that of other countries”. Nikolay Atmon’ev, advisor to the Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation, said that companies in Cyprus, Latvia and Switzerland had ben established in Browder’s interests and had cashed and laundered hundreds of millions of dollars.

    The Office of the Prosecutor General believes it “very likely” that the auditor Sergei Magnitsky and several other of his accomplices were killed on Browder’s direct orders because they were undesirable witnesses: “Initially, the deaths of Gasanov, Kurochkin and Magnitsky were considered to have been through natural causes, because of sicknesses that they had; the death of Korobyeinikov seemed to have been accidental. However, further data was obtained, indicating the violent nature of the deaths of these persons”. The Investigative Committee opened a murder inquiry into Browder’s business partners Oktai Gasanov, Valeriy Kurochkin and Sergei Korobyenikov. Browder is a suspect as regards the elimination of financier Alexander Perepelichny, who died in 2012 in the British town of Weybridge (in the Russian immigrant’s stomach were found traces of Asian poisonous plant Gelsemium elegans). According to Atmen’ev, the Prosecutor’s office sent to the Investigative Committee notification of its decision that an inquiry be opened as regards making a criminal case against Browder because of the suspicion that he had been involved in the murder of Perepelichny. As for Magnitsky, who died in 2009 at the hospital of the “Matrosskaya Tishina” remand centre, the Office of the Prosecutor General believes that he was poisoned “as a diversion and by a chemical substance consisting of aluminium compounds”, which brought about the development of his cardio-hepatic failure. “What Browder was especially interested in was that Sergei Magnitsky die so as to avoid his being exposed”, said Atmon’ev.

    “Amongst the chemicals that pose a hidden threat to humans, there is a group of toxic aluminium compounds. In Russia, there has not been an investigation targeted at these substances. Detailed analysis of scientific information shows that for several decades toxicological studies of aluminium compounds have been carried out previously and there continues exclusive research into them by organizations in the the United States, France and Italy. There has been studied particularly closely the acute and chronic toxicity of a number of hazardous aluminium compounds that are ingested orally or inhaled and their effects on the human body … Analysis of substances obtained from the bodies of Kurochkin, Korobyenikov, Gasanov and Magnitsky has led to the conclusion that the deceased persons had signs of chronic poisoning with a toxic water-soluble aluminium compound that had been administered orally”, said a representative of the Office of the Russian Prosecutor, Mikhail Alexandrov.

    In the very near future, the Russian Federation will announce that Browder is on the international wanted list under the UN Convention against transnational crime. “There is the possibility of extradition provided for in the Convention, even in cases when between the countries that decide the issue of extradition,there is no bilateral extradition Treaty”, said Atmon’ev.

    They gotta be joking! Trust me! I’m as straight as they come!


    1. RT keeps stating that Magnitsky was employed by Browder. I’m pretty sure he wasn’t. He was employed by an audit company, Firestone Duncan, that advised Browder in his shady, tax-dodging operations.

      Browder has always tried to make out that he was a pal of Magnitsky and how he grieved for his fate.

      Browder not once visited his “friend” Magnitsky when he was held on remand.

      At least they have stopped calling Magnitsky a “lawyer”.

      Browder persisently called him a lawyer, though, in numerous interviews, when he must have known damned well he was no such thing.


  34. Strategic Culture: EU Suspends Aid to Chisinau: Moldovan Government Suffers Huge Setback Before Elections


    The European Commission has decided to cut the financial assistance to Moldova by 20 million euros ($22.7 million) per year for both 2017 and 2018. Besides reducing direct funding, the EU suspended the $113,280,000 (100 million euros) macrofinancial assistance (MFA) program for Chisinau until further notice. The MFA was initially frozen temporarily in July.

    On Nov.14, just a day before the decision to cut assistance, the European Parliament overwhelmingly passed a nonbinding resolution saying Moldova has become a “state captured by oligarchic interests” that exert their influence over most parts of Moldova’s society. The country is actually ruled by a small group of tycoons. Chisinau is criticized for backsliding on democratic standards and the rule of law. The document says Moldova has failed to cope with “high levels of corruption, lack of independent judiciary and backsliding on democratic standards.”…

    More at the link.

    Timing? Could it possibly be related the news I posted about Moldova sending a ‘diplomatic mission’ to Moscow on the 8th & 9th of November, not to mention Moldova’s President Igor Dodon’s visit at the end of October*? I would imagine that would upset U-rope. Apparently Moldova has started exporting apples to Saudi! If you trawl for Moldova news, you’ll also see in the last week or two plenty about Moldova working together with the Ukraine (joint energy market) and also Georgia (study Russian malign influence) blah blah blah whilst also bigging up with Byelorussia. What is it someone said about trying to sit on two stools at the same time?



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