Putin’s Victorious Defeat

by craig on March 7, 2014 3:37 pm in Uncategorized

Just a month ago, Putin had one of his pet oligarchs, the firmly pro-Russian multi-billionaire Yanukovich, in power in Ukraine.  Putin had been to an awful lot of trouble to ensure that Yanukovich got elected.  It is undoubtedly true that the United States and its allies funded various pro-western groups in the Ukraine – my friend Ray McGovern, former senior CIA, put a figure of US$100 million on it, and he should know.  The resources Putin poured in to ensure Yanukovich’s election were more in kind than financial, but were not on too different a scale.

In earlier attempts to put Yanukovich in power, Putin had in 2004 helped organise massive electoral fraud, and Putin’s secret service had attempted to assassinate Victor Yushchenko.  The 2010 election of Yanukovich also involved a great deal of fraud.  Russia is an influential member of the OSCE, Ukraine is also a member and that organization is notably mealy-mouthed in pointing out the derelictions of its own members. Nonetheless its observation mission of the 2010 Presidential elections stated:

 “The presidential election met most OSCE commitments and other international standards for democratic elections and consolidated progress achieved since 2004. The process was transparent and offered voters a genuine choice between candidates representing diverse political views. However, unsubstantiated allegations of large-scale electoral fraud negatively affected the election atmosphere and voter confidence in the process.”

That is about as close as the OSCE has ever come to accusing one of its own members of fraud.  International organisations have their obvious limitations.

Putin had put years of effort into getting the President of Ukraine which he wanted, and he had him.  Yanukovich attempted to steer an even-handed path between Russia and the West, while putting his main effort into acquiring an astonishing personal fortune.  Putin lost patience when Yanukovich appeared ready to sign an EU association agreement, and put extremely heavy pressure on Yanukovich over debt, energy supplies, and doubtless some deeply personal pressures too.  Yanukovich backed down from the EU Association agreement and signed a new trade deal with Russia, appearing on the path to Putin’s cherished new Eurasian customs union.

The west – and not only the west – of Ukraine erupted into popular protest.  The reason for this is perfectly simple. Income, lifestyle, education, health and social security for ordinary people are far better in western and central Europe than they are in Russia.  The standard of living for ordinary Polish people in Poland has caught up at a tremendous rate towards the rest of the EU.  I am not depending on statistics here – I have lived in Poland, travelled widely in Poland and speak Polish.  I was professionally involved in the process of Polish economic transformation.  There have been a large number of commenters on this blog this last few days who deny that the standard of living for ordinary people in Poland is better as a result of EU membership, and believe life for ordinary people is better in Russia than in the west.  I also of course speak Russian and have travelled widely in Russia.  Frankly, you have to be so ideologically blinkered to believe that, I have no concerns if such people leave this blog and never come back; they are incapable of independent thought anyway.

Undoubtedly pro-western groups financed by the US and others played a part in the anti-Yanukovich movement.  They may have had a catalytic role, but that cannot detract from the upswell of hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians who were not paid by the West, and drove Yanukovich from power. It is true that, when the situation became violent some very unpleasant nationalist, even fascist, groups came to the fore.  There is a great deal of extreme right wing thuggery in all the former Soviet Union – ask Uzbeks who live in Russia.  The current government in power in Kiev seem a diverse bunch, and seem to include some pleasant people and some very unpleasant people.  Elections this year will make things clearer.   It is also true that corruption is the norm among the Ukrainian political elite, across any nationalist or ideological divides.

In a very short space of time, Putin went from the triumph of killing off the EU Association agreement to the disaster of completely losing control of Kiev.  But for reasons including trade, infrastructure and debt, the new government was bound to come back to some relationship and accommodation with Putin eventually.  It just needed patience.

Instead of which, Putin decided to go for a macho seizure of the Crimea.  There is no doubt that the actions of surrounding military bases and government buildings by Russian forces, and controlling roads and borders, are illegal under international law.  There also appears little doubt that a large proportion of Crimea’s population would like union with Russia, though whether a genuine majority I am not sure.  I am sure under these circumstances of intimidation and military occupation, the referendum will show a massive majority.  Hitler pulled the same trick.

So now Putin can stride the stage as the macho guy who outfoxed the west and used his military to win Crimea for Mother Russia.  But it is an extremely hollow victory.  He has gained Crimea, but lost the other 95% of the Ukraine, over which one month ago he exercised a massive political influence.

The western powers will not bring any really effective sanctions that would harm the financial interests of the interconnected super-rich, be they Russian oligarchs or City bankers.  But they will now do what they were not prepared to do before, provide enough resources to make Ukraine politically free of Russia.  The EU has already agreed to match the US$19 billion in guarantees Putin had promised to Yanukovich. Before the annexation of Crimea the EU was not prepared to do that.

The Crimea was the only ethnic Russian majority province in Ukraine.  Donetsk does not have an ethnic Russian majority, only a Russian speaking majority – just like Cardiff has an English speaking majority.  The difference is key to understand the situation, and largely ignored by the mainstream media.  Without Crimea, the chances of the pro-Putin forces in the rest of Ukraine ever mustering an electoral majority are extremely slim.  Putin has gained Crimea and lost Ukraine – has he really won?

The real tragedy, of course, is that Ukraine’s relationships are viewed as a zero-sum game.  Russia has huge interests in common with Europe.  I hope to see Ukraine a member of the EU in the next decade, and Putin has made that vastly more likely than it was a month ago.  But why does that have to preclude a close economic relationship with Russia?  The EU should not operate as a barrier against the rest of the world, but as a zone of complete freedom within and ever-expanding freedom to  and from without.  And European Union will never be complete until Russia, one of the greatest of European cultures, is a member.





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  1. The Washington/London plot to destabilise the Crimea using the same strategy used in Kiev was ‘thrown a monkey wrench’ by good intelligence. A reliable source has informed coia that well trained ‘mercenaries’ on £800/day plus expenses intended to fly to Simferopol airport and seize it and other strategic locations, such as Sevastopol, Kerch, Feodosia and Yalta where a meetup would occur in an abandoned warehouse. The plan was nullified when Flights were called back and others cancelled.

    We can presume these people and other jihadist including al-qaeda operatives from Saudi and Tatars trained in Turkey will attempt to disrupt the Crimea referendum to be held in 10 days time.

    The ultra-right-wing military organization known as Ukrainian National Assembly – Ukrainian People’s Self-Defense (UNA-UNSO) is I believe part of a NATO GLADIO organisation based in Ukraine and it is this group that is tasked I am sure with coordinating others and faking a massive humanitarian crisis in Crimea before the Crimea people’s mandate.

    I have informed Moscow.

  2. Goodness me.
    I found this report in CNN.Fascinating to see them report the obvious.
    As for 95% Craig.Methinks your numbers are wrong.
    Ukraine is in the process of splitting.This process has precisely begun.
    The East of Ukraine is very Russian and with little effort it will join the Crimea.
    What is left over is a country with many problems and their new leadership is #1.
    IMF help is #2.And then there is an EU willing to print money and still woo the bride without her juicy bits.Sick at #3!number 4 and sitting in the back seat is Obama wanting an airbase on Russia’s doorstep.They will be agitating till it comes.
    I don’t think Putin has lost or will lose.We witnessed the bloody coup,and then we saw how the Russians do it.No soldiers, just local militia tovarich.

  3. Kurtan

    Crimea is the only province which is majority ethnically Russian. Your “no Russian troops” claim is a stupid lie. People can believe and argue what they want, but deliberate lying is different.

  4. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:01 pm

    “And European Union will never be complete until Russia, one of the greatest of European cultures, is a member.”

    For this Russian mentality (and not only their elites) has to change a lot. For now I think it is probably that the gap between Russian and Europe is wider than between Europe and Turkey.

  5. “Just a month ago, Putin had one of his pet oligarchs, the firmly pro-Russian multi-billionaire Yanukovich, in power in Ukraine.”

    “The British government selected the man who they wanted to be the head of the new Russian government. His name was Boris Savinkov.”


  6. “they are incapable of independent thought anyway.” – or they are Zionists.
    Anyone who disagrees with you is a Zionist, or is incapable of independent thought, naturally.
    Do you ever wonder why your media interviews get cancelled? Is it all a Zionist plot, or have you become an embarassing tosser?

  7. lucythediclonius

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:04 pm

    What is ethnically Russian according to you Craig?If you had a Georgian mother and a Kazakh father and were born in Kiev would you be Russian ,Kazakh or other?

  8. Your attempts to denigrate Putin go to extreme lengths.

    Putin did nothing to help Yanukovych get elected in 2004 or with the attempted assassination of Victor Yushchenko – just CIA propaganda, apparently from your buddy McGovern.

    This is Russophobia in spades.

    You should read something reliable about Putin, like Shevtsova’s book, and get over it.

  9. It’s purely a self-identification thing Lucy. Throughout the former soviet union, for official purposes people are asked their citizenship and their nationality – gradzvanstva and narodnosc. Everyone in the former soviet union knows what it means. People will answer “I am an Uzbek citizen of Tajik nationality” for example. Just as you may call yourself Welsh and be of goodness knows what ancestry. Self-identification, that’s all.

    But in the census of Donetsk, only about 20% of the population put themselves as Ukrainian citizens, Russian nationals. The large majority put themselves as Ukrainian citizens, Ukrainian nationals. They knew precisely what the question means. Crimea was the only region where most people answerd Ukrainian citizen, Russian national.

    Does that help you? I have not, I am glad to say, become a racial theorist!

  10. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:12 pm


    How would you respond to your own question?

    You only need to ask ethnically Russian if you (whose mother is Georgian and father is Kazakh) could call yourself Russian. Be prepared to put brave face when you are loudly laughed in your face.

  11. Lawrence AB

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:13 pm

    Craig, your last comment about the importance of Russia to Europe is spot on.
    Russia has been intimately involved in European affairs for at least 300 years. It has given us, and to the world, literature, political thinkers, poets, music, painters, of extraordinary quality, second to none. We have far more in common with Russia than with the currently degraded democracy across the Atlantic (I hope it regains its early values but signs are not good).
    We must be patient and persistent with Russia and always show our respect for the people, if not for the régimes. The Cold EWar rhetoric is unhelpful to say the least, downright stupid at worst. Anyone who has studied Russian history knows that a great pendulum swings through the decades between slavophils and zapadniki (wersternisers). We are in a Slovophil moment. It will change. We must encourage the change.

  12. Craig,

    I understand what you’re saying about Poland and agree with you. However, it also could be said that EU membership leads to IMF-type debt and a steady supply of ‘underclass’ for poorly-paid service work jobs in rich, financialized EU countries like the UK. I’m all for the free movement of people, but I’m not sure that migrations of the younger generations to rich EU nations to be exploited in dead-end jobs is the same thing as freedom.

    Putin’s Russia doesn’t operate so much on the financialization model. He seems to be more interested in resources and industry. Over time, this would seem to offer another path to prosperity, one that doesn’t involve predatory organizations like the IMF and the World Bank, and offers a real economy at home for those who don’t want to leave their country.

    Poland got into the EU before the financial crisis, and already had a fairly robust guest worker system in parts of Europe. The pressures on the richer economies today to sustain the giant, freewheeling casino of financialization are quite different than in 2004.

  13. Trowbridge

    “Putin did nothing to help Yanukovych get elected in 2004 or with the attempted assassination of Victor Yushchenko –”


  14. Reliably

    Putin’s economic model relies entirely on the massive export of raw commodities, especially metals and energy, which provides very little employment and concentrates super-profits in the hands of a tiny elite. Manufacturing and services are minute parts of the economy. What is the last thing you bought made in Russia? What is the last thing Putin or any of his oligarchs bought that is made in Russia?

    The system results in even worse wealth inequality than the terrible – and worsening – situation you rightly describe in the West

  15. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:19 pm

    Trowbridge H. Ford

    I would rather recommend you and other people to read another book about Putin. “Putin’s Russia” by assassinated (by KGB-however I realise that this will be dismissed as CIA propaganda) Anna Politkovskaya.

  16. Does anyone remember how much it cost to unite East and West Germany.

    It’d cost a lot more than that to make Ukraine and particularly West Ukraine a part of the EU.

    And East Germany was way way ahead of where the Ukraine is at economically, and of course the ethnic ties were very different.

    You’re talking hundreds of billions, and I don’t think the EU wants to spend that much.

    I can see them plundering the place though.

  17. “Putin’s economic model”

    It’s not his model. He has to work with what he has.

    The development of these other areas of economic activity takes time, and indeed evolves over time.

    Putin is currently rescuing the country from Yeltsin and the West’s shock therapy.

  18. “What is the last thing you bought made in Russia?”

    That could just about be said of the UK!.

    “The system results in even worse wealth inequality than the terrible – and worsening – situation you rightly describe in the West”

    Photo finish.

  19. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:28 pm


    “And East Germany was way way ahead of where the Ukraine is at economically, and of course the ethnic ties were very different”

    REALLY? East Germany AKA German Democratic Republic? You must have been dreaming at the (important) historical moment of German unification.

  20. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:31 pm


    “That could just about be said of the UK!.”

    So we all are driving Russian cars then, in the UK? Flying on Russian planes?

  21. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:34 pm

    Mr Murray

    Are not you tired arguing with the bluntly headed lefties? It seems not only they know very little about Russia and former USSR but also their knowledge of economic theory is questionable.

    I realise that I had to study Marx and Lenin and was not allowed to argue of their shortcomings. But why these people?

  22. So if Putin tried to kill Yushchenko, why does Shevtsova not mention it?

    If Putin’s so-called “meddling” ( p. 274) in the 2004 election was so instrumental in Yanukovych’s victory, why did Putin have to threaten to cut off the gas in 2006 to get him on Russia’s side?

  23. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:39 pm

    Trowbridge H. Ford

    Yanukovich was Putin’s men but he was president of Ukraine where there were own elites and he also had to maintain that (as we have witnessed very fragile) balance between Ukrainian nationalists and pro-Russian Ukrainians. He could not always do 100% what Putin wanted him to do. And as soon as he has forgotten this, he was out.

  24. lucythediclonius

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:40 pm

    Yes thanks Craig it is somewhat confusing as are what exactly constitutes language in the region.Nothing inaccurate in your analysis but the east may be more Russian than you suggest.The western heartland of the fascist groups (Lviv) is Catholic and Polish in some ways.The borders were set when nationality wasn’t really an issue and a lot of people have family both sides of the border.

  25. “Aid For The Ukraine “Will Be Stolen” – Former Ukrainian Minister Of Economy”


  26. Uzbek

    Are you disagreeing that East Germany was ahead of western Ukraine economically?

  27. Black jelly

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:47 pm

    The proof of the pudding is in the reaction of the massed ranks of the sayanim, how the Synagogue of Satan hates the man !! He has stumped their EVERY move for domination, so much so that the “Yats” have even had to resort to an alliance with Nazis in Ukraine to get at him.Its very simple, if the devils who have a proven long list of “credentials” including – King David Hotel,GoT,Kennedy,USS Liberty,911 NORAD,Ghouta,etc are after his ass – he must be an ANGEL !! Just the spin of the gaju devils in the Beeb has been enough to convince me Putin is da man !!

  28. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 4:47 pm


    Yes. In fact East Germany (despite being Germany) was one of the least developed eastern block economies could only be compared to Romania of that time. And it is despite it being flagship for soviets to prove that their economic model was better than western. Some current researches I came across suggested that it was due to German work ethics was incomparable with soviet. And it was soviet that was enforced on East Germans.

  29. If Putin had gone to such lengths to get Yanukovych elected President, why did he then have to go to Moscow to patch things up?

  30. I thought Scottish had a sense of humor Craig? You missed my sarcasm with local militia in place of soldiers.Ukraine situation is manufactured by the West.Or do you dispute that ?
    What was Putin to do ? If you were in his boots Craig. Let these obviously far right extremists and oligarchs just take over business from an elected leader ?
    It seems like a game and Putin isn’t losing.Obama doesn’t look weak,he looks stupid,but not as pathetic as his deputy.The CNN article I pasted mirrors my thoughts on the subject.
    Personally I would like to see Ukraine totally independent.
    Whichever way this ends Kiev will be wearing handcuffs.Beholden to western banking practices and yet another country under the yoke or just under Moscow rule.
    And yes, after the split of Soviet Union there was much sadness among many of it’s former members.We in the west were fed only the negatives,like now,and were never fed the cultural similarities.Uzbeks ,Tazjiks, fought with Kazhaks ,Russians & Ukrainians in a stupid war in Afghanistan.It pushed those soldiers together ,not apart.
    Time to dig out the old Soviet propaganda about the USA.It has never been more true.

  31. Leaked calls gives us great insight including a wavelength of empathy towards those murdered by snipers in Kiev.

    Gosh! ‘I didn’t know’ is worth a listen my friends, an introduction if you will into the conspiracy world of lies and deception to further rampant, obsessive and high-handed desires of power and control that Craig in his former posts is well aware of.

    Part one:


    Part two:


    I say again remember the Arab dressed SAS forces in Iraq found planting explosives many of which ripped the fragile limbs of children now orphaned and in constant pain both mentally and physically.

  32. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 5:00 pm

    Never mind that Gazprom Chief Miller has announced today that Gazprom will likely to stop gas supply to Ukraine within the next few weeks for the payment arrears.

    Not that crucial for people on this blog I guess.

  33. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 5:03 pm

    mark golding

    Just because one of the sides involved proved evil, it does not automatically matter that other side is angel. It needs to prove itself to be good caring angel. Or does it not, if it is Russia?

  34. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 5:07 pm

    Trowbridge H. Ford

    I am surprised my earlier answer did not answer that. As soon as Yanukovich forgot and neglected his nominal role as president of Ukraine (and that at least he needed to pretend to behave like one) he was out. Ukrainians throughout centuries had troubled relations with Russians, and one who rules Ukraine needs to at least pretend to be Ukrainian.

  35. conjunction

    7 Mar, 2014 - 5:14 pm

    A very interesting piece. Like you, Craig I am a Europhile. Not to say I want the UK to join the Euro I am happy for us to sit on the edge. But the EU is the outcome of hundreds of years of wars culminating in the double crucifixion of the last century. In a certain sense we have got beyond nationalism.

    Russia of course has never except for a few years in the nineties had any form of democracy. Putin perhaps can only act out of his own traditions. But your thoughts about Russia and the EU are a good way of trying to imagine the future.

    The EU of course was born out of the ashes of the Second World War, in which 25 million Russians died.

  36. conjunction

    7 Mar, 2014 - 5:15 pm

    Mark Golding: who or what is coia?

  37. That’s strange, Uzbek.

    Where’s the evidence that East Germany was on a par with Romania?

    I only ever see reports of East Germany having had the highest standard of living in the Eastern bloc.

    But anyway, how much do you think it will cost to bring the Ukrainian economy into the EU, and who has the money to pay for it?

    We’ve already seen that the EU Association deal was little more than a plunderer’s charter.

  38. Lauris Kaplinski

    7 Mar, 2014 - 5:24 pm

    Craig, it is true that only 20% of people from Donetsk identify themselves as Russians and 80% as Ukrainians. But this does not mean, that they identify themselves with whatever regime present in Kiev. They probably love their country and precise because of that do not want it to fall into the hands of Western-Ukrainian nationalists. Unfortunately they are much more passive, because their Ukrainian identity is fueled by nationalism.
    IMO how things evolve depend now how Russia and current government in Kiev behave. The occupation of Crimea probably alienates many of them from Russia for the time being – but as soon as Kiev starts implementing nationalistic policies (and it seems determined to do that) it may serve as a strong cause that can be used to strong-arm the government for concessions. Which again does not fly well with Western-Ukrainians.
    Also, while Russia is less developed than Poland it has much better quality of life than Ukraine. Even Belarus is richer than Ukraine. As soon as the IMF pension cuts kick in I would not put my bets on the patriotism of Eastern Ukrainians.
    The best arrangement would be some sort of federal structure. It should have be set up 25 years ago but nationalists from Western Ukraine blocked it. And unfortunately it seems that for a time being powers that be are decided to not let it happen this time too.

  39. Craig, your definition of ‘Putin’s economic model’ that ‘provides very little employment’ seems to be based on your experiences in the similarly resource rich countries of West Africa rather than Russia. Russian citzens hold most of the technician and engineer posts that their extractive industries generate, whereas in West Africa these posts are largely staffed by Ex-pats (and not just westerners- you’ll find Filipinos working on Nigerian oil rigs almost as commonly as actual Nigerians. On many off shore facilities in the Bight the only Nigerian you’ll find would be the cook!)

    You are quite right about the high level of inequality, and rampant corruption, in Putin’s Russia. However the oil and gas boom in the Putin years has also benefitted some sections of the middle class, unlike in the Yeltsin years, when commodities were in the doldrums and the ‘shock therapy’, introduced in 1992, reduced a very large cohort of the Russian population to real penury.

    In the last decade the Russian middle class has enjoyed holidaying in large numbers on the beaches of Cyprus, Egypt and Thailand; that never happened under Yeltsin, and also helps explain why Putin’s authoritarianism hasn’t caused large scale unrest in Russia- or even much dented his approval ratings.

  40. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 5:25 pm


    I am not sure how much money it will take to modernise Ukrainian economy. Surely it should not be one way process, (like Russians do with Belarus) giving them money and pretending that they are doing something good with it. What do you mean bringing economy to the EU? What I see is Romania and Bulgaria members of the EU whereas Croatia and Turkey (with stronger economies) are not. EU is not just about economy.

    It depends what reports you are looking at. East Germans (like eastern block in general) were well known for things called in Russian as Prepiska (written without evidence). As said it was crucial for USSR to show that GDR is performing better than other, because it was GDR that had FRG (Federal Republic of Germany- West Germany) across the frontline border against which economic performance was clearly assessable.

  41. Lauris Kaplinski

    7 Mar, 2014 - 5:25 pm

    is NOT fueled by nationalism

  42. Another way of looking at it is, why would the Germans put at risk their massive trade with Russia, in order to take on and fund the massive economic basket case that is Ukraine.

    They won’t. They simply won’t do that.

    The only interest the West has in Ukraine is a military one in terms of Russia, and Ukrainians would do best to understand that or they’ll be very disappointed as their remaining resources are plundered.

  43. OrwellianUK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 5:30 pm

    I still think the extent of the Military situation in Ukraine has been massively exaggerated in Western Media and I feel you are being swayed by this Craig. The troops were already there. Sure, Putin is playing to the home crowd but in some respects he probably had little choice but to act considering some of the dangerous elements in what was for all intensive purposes a coup d’etat. I also think you are understating/underestimating the extent of the US/EU involvement with the violent protests. It’s becoming clear that some provocateurism was involved. The US/EU seem to care little who they get into bed with to get their own way, and the fact that they are singing from different hymn sheets has made the situation worse.

    I also think you’re focusing too much on Putin’s Imperialism here and not showing some balance. After all, how do you think the US would behave if this were Mexico? Can we believe for one minute that the US government has not had a major influence on who the government of Mexico is? For some reason no-one notices when the US does this, just as Piers Morgan on CNN the other day, questioning RT Anchor Abby Martin only sees the Propaganda when it is the Russians doing it. Supposing Alaska became an independent Republic but still maintained strong ties to the US including a military presence and the Russians and Chinese subverted the elected government and installed their own puppets? What do you think the US would do?

    I think it is too early to say who has overplayed their hand in this, but all outside parties are doing what Empires do – a tug of war between at least 3 major outside factions which will ultimately decimate Ukraine in a cascade of debt and internal crisis.

    I’m puzzled as to why you put so much store in the EU. It is an enormously wasteful, corrupt and bankrupt organisation run by a motley crew of inept Western and Eastern European Oligarchs and Politicos. These standards of living, in case you hadn’t noticed, are on their way down (for the majority of us), not up. Adding an already debt-crippled nation to this pathetically dysfunctional entity will do neither them or the incumbent nations any good at all. It’s just more good money thrown after bad.

  44. Uzbek…

    Gazprom cannot, physically, “stop supplying Ukraine”.
    Its pipelines to the south and west run through Ukraine.

    It’s a political rather than practical threat.

  45. Kurtan

    My sincere apologies – your mimicry was so like some of the curious people who have been posting, I was quite taken in!!

  46. Prof Aleksandr Buzgalin gives his view:

    “People were tired from Yanukovych, and I understand very well that it is necessary and it was necessary to make democratic revolution. But what was happened in Ukraine, unfortunately, is not real democratic revolution on the basis of the–on the backs of the ordinary people who wanted to change bureaucratic, corrupted power, came to the power another–representatives of another oligarchical groups, another geopolitical forces who want to manipulate with Ukraine.”


  47. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 5:51 pm

    old mark

    I think the main argument here what economy is better for Ukraine. European type (diverse and efficient) or Russian (very different from former) which would not work in Ukraine which has no gas and oil.

    It is too early to compare Russia to West Africa. It was after all 2nd world not 3rd. It has (still) some industrial output but as Mr Murray mentioned it is more within raw materials then finished industrial products. Russians sell metals (which itself require industrial output to produce) but does not sell cars.

    You gave Yeltsin’s era as example but during Yeltsin’s presidency oil did not cost over 100 USD per barrel. Nor gas cost as much as it is now.

    One only need to drive 20 miles away from MKAD (Moscow M25) to see what Russian economy and distribution of wealth is. I have been living in the UK for some years now, but I never seen toilet without sewage in the UK, or anywhere in western Europe. And there are still some within MKAD. And it is despite Russian GDP per capita closing to that of Estonia (which is by the way with no oil and gas export power).

  48. Paul Craig Roberts gives his view:

    “The Looting Of Ukraine Has Begun”

    “Naive protesters who believed the propaganda that EU membership offered a better life are due to lose half of their pension by April. But this is only the beginning.”


    Dr Paul Craig Roberts is an economist and was Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury for Economic Policy under Reagan and associate editor of the Wall Street Journal.

  49. Absolutely right Uzbek. Proof relies on information not propaganda or disinformation. Disinformation is unstable, immaterial or unreal and decays with time. That said the unreal part has to exist in the first place so that information can evolve.

  50. As with the Iraq war it is our MSM who are not telling the truth. Whatever Putin’s tactics in the election of Yanukovich it was Yanukovich who was in power when overthrown by a rogue element from among the protestors. The fact that Mark Golding, who is well in touch with what is going on in the world, has only just posted a story that broke more than 48 hours ago. It shows how ill-informed society in general is. I respect Craig Murray and his opinions. When the BBC is deliberately presenting false information to influence public opinion, I for one want to know why I have to pay a licence fee.

    The lying BBC and other MSM outlets are presenting their masters’ wishes of what is happening in the Ukraine. It is all a load of tosh. Yet people still believe it. Wake up world! Russia has not sent troops into Crimea. The start of the shooting in Kiev came from a sniper from the protestors’ side who fired on police and supporters.


  51. Keith Crosby

    7 Mar, 2014 - 6:22 pm

    So according to you, Yanushkevitch is a Russian version of the Khasi of Afghanistan/Cameron/Merkel etc. Did you ever doubt that Russia was a second division version of America or that US imperial policy towards Russia was a version of its siege of Cuba? A plague on all their statist totalitarian houses.

  52. “An IMF director said a fact-finding mission to Kiev was “progressing well” and that the IMF was “positively impressed” with the new government.”

    The vampyre loves the virgin.

    Meanwhile, these Russians certainly aren’t suckers:

    “A spokesman for Russian president Vladimir Putin said the notion of talks with Ukraine mediated by Western powers “makes us smile”. But the spokesman expressed faith and hope that a new Cold War was not beginning.”


  53. Keith Crosby

    7 Mar, 2014 - 6:33 pm

    “I am sure under these circumstances of intimidation and military occupation, the referendum will show a massive majority. Hitler pulled the same trick.”

    No, even with intimidation, fraud and terrorism the nazis failed to win the first election of 1933. It was only in the second “election” when only nazis could stand that the nazis “won”. Hitler was never democratically elected to anything. In the last free election in November 1932 the nazis got 33.09% of the vote and in the semi-bent election of March 1933 they got 43.91%, roughly the same as Thatchler under the equally bent FPTP system here. Britain has never had a democratically-elected government so perhaps you could suggest some changes here before sneering at Putin the amateur.

  54. Talk about curiosities. Please define the Left from your perspective, craig. Is it the Left who has given you support for your dissidence, or the Left who simply disagrees with your analysis of the the topic?

    Not expecting an answer, of course.

  55. Gracious John – Thanks. I rely on others for information including Mary – Where is she? I miss her.

  56. technicolour

    7 Mar, 2014 - 6:45 pm

    All the extremes doing their best to shout down the peaceful heart of it (much like most places), it would appear.

    Otherwise, have every sympathy with people citing the US/UK’s absolute lack of a peaceful moral high ground, not to mention the fact that Monsanto et al will be extending their feelers towards the ‘new’ Ukraine with gusto. On other other hand, anyone who hasn’t lived under the Russian regime really does not know what they are talking about. Why on earth you would whitewash/aggrandise one simply because you loathe the other is beyond me too.

  57. I miss Mary too Mark. I think she pre-empted Craig’s thoughtful invitation to any who disagree with him.

  58. Hi Mark

    I’ve noticed Mary’s absence. I hope she is all right. Personal attacks have not been as bad recently and people have largely been staying on-topic. Perhaps, like all of us, comments may have been removed and she may have taken umbrage. That’s pure speculation, I don’t know. My only contact with her is through this blog.

  59. Re Mary, this may, or may not be relevant/connected;


  60. Ukrainians are basically Slavic people inhabiting a land that has not been independent since the Iron Age. Whether they’ll be at home in the EU remains to be seen.

    Putin’s having gained Crimea and lost Ukraine – if that is, indeed, going to be the case – may not be such a bad deal for Russia after all. One wonders who will pay Ukraine’s debts. One way or the other, Ukraine will get on with Russia as they have to.

    As for Russia becoming a member of the EU – I don’t really see them deferring to Brussels – “a zone of complete freedom within and ever-expanding freedom to and from without”

  61. ” One wonders who will pay Ukraine’s debts.”



    “Most disbursements will likely hinge on the formation of a new Ukrainian government after elections in May and an agreement on wide-ranging reforms with the IMF. The fund will likely insist, among other things, on a currency devaluation and a sharp hike to natural gas prices, which Ukraine subsidizes heavily.”

    I think the ‘iceberg effect’ in in play with austerity for the $15 billion in IMF aid. They need $35 billion over the next two years, and the erosion of the economy will proceed as Japan’s.

  62. I see where you’re coming from Craig, but do not agree with you.
    I suppose the West got what they manufactured.Putin has just reacted. Surrounding Ukrainian bases on the Crimea makes total sense.He would look extremely silly having his Black Sea fleet surrounded instead. And then who knows what this idiot in charge could’ve ordered as he is now in control I suppose of Ukrainian armed forces.He has already told media in a speech that Russian tanks were rolling into Crimea.Interestingly enough, he also brought up Iranian nukes.He is Jewish after all and has dual citizenship, but maybe that’s just another coincidence.
    It’s pretty sad when you believe other leaders more than your own.We don’t have a Lavrov or a Putin. Just a bunch of silly school boys playing at politicians.They get their script from the FO or the City.
    We have a lot of Ukrainians and Russians in Vienna. They mix totally. You can meet them all ,including very attractive ladies at the Russian Trade mission here. I haven’t been there since the troubles began,but have a hard time believing that there’s bad feeling.Too much vodka under the bridge.They always argue politics,but that seems to be like entertainment for them.The barman is from Turkmenistan and his wife from Azerbadjan.
    Feryudin always calls himself Russian.

  63. Macky, Mary was posting after that comment on the next thread as well. If offended it was most likely this comment.


  64. “So we all are driving Russian cars then, in the UK? Flying on Russian planes?”

    We could well be soon, I think it’s three American car manufacturers have factories in Russia now. The days of the Lada are over

  65. Gaston: There’s many stories of where the Ukrainians came from.
    The Swedish Vikings invaded that region. The Ukrainian flag has exactly the same colours as the Swedish flag. The women are very blond and Scandinavian looking.The language is Slavic, but there’s a good mix there.As I found out when they held the Euro Song contest, many customs are similar or the same to those of Sweden.

    As for the EU. Neighbouring countries have always traded with each other.Scotlands biggest trading partner way back in the 1200’s was Belgium or Flanders as it was.The Hanseatic League was huge in its time.It did not hinder you from trading with anybody else, it just made it easier.That’s all our Union was sold to us as.I don’t want it to become a US of E.

  66. technicolour

    7 Mar, 2014 - 7:29 pm

    (OT) I loved my Lada.

  67. Most teens want full independence, but teens are caught by the reality of economic dependence. The Ukraine may want to shake off its dependence from Russia, but Yanukovich was right when he said that he had to be realistic. Here is the reality that the Ukraine must deal with: 70% of its economy is trade with Russia. That might change in the future, but right now, its trade is dependent on Russia. The Ukraine gets and is unable to pay for its use of gas, which was over $400 million in February and did not pay. The debt to Russia approaching $2 billion, and who knows how much to other debtors. I don’t question that corruption by politicians is a huge problem, but I doubt that it is the reason for all the debt that the Ukraine owes. The current government doesn’t have the support of majority of the Ukraine people. Why do I say this? Because other cities did not follow Kiev. In other countries, we saw demonstrations all over, e.g. Egypt, Tunisia, etc. Being in debt to the Russians or to the IMF, like the Greeks, makes no difference. I doubt that Russia will give its gas to the Ukraine at half price if it decides to go with the EU.

  68. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    7 Mar, 2014 - 7:38 pm

    Thank you, Craig, and congratulations on a masterful piece which summarizes the build-up to where we are now and likely short-term consequences; I agree with 95% of what you wrote.

    Also thanks to Uzbek in the UK for so ably and energetically rebutting many of the ensuing posts from the usual suspects.


    I’m sure you’ll forgive me this little observation: perhaps you’ll understand from the reactions which this and your couple of previous themes have provoked why I’ve intervening quite so frequently on your blog over the past year or so. The themes have been multiple, but the approach of – I’m sorry to say of the majority of – your regulars is always the same. QED.

  69. To add to my recent post, you may use Google translate for this article from El Pais, Spain.

    La economía ucrania habla ruso


  70. One realises the approach or path is the same having gone through the same gate. That is harmony, singularity, of oneness, of connection, of non-duality. That is the proof. QED

  71. Mobile phone age,reports of troop movements,no restrictions on movement, just approaching bases.
    If there were large troop movments someone would have recorded them.
    They haven’t happened.

  72. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    7 Mar, 2014 - 7:57 pm

    “Dr Paul Craig Roberts is an economist and was Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury for Economic Policy under Reagan and associate editor of the Wall Street Journal.”

    Herbie, beware of false Gods – and of excessive hero worship.

    Yes, Roberts is an economist by training – as were Milton Friedman, Patrick Minford, Joseph Schumpeter, Margaret Thatcher’s favorite guru Alan Walters and many others to whom you would probably not link in quite the same fawning manner.

    He was indeed an Assistant Secretary at the Treasury – for all of 11 months more than 30 years ago. At present, there are around 11 Assistant Secretaries in the Treasury Dept.

    And he is no longer an Associate Editor at the Wall Street Journal and hasn’t written for it for a long time.

    I advise anyone who wants to savour Dr Roberts’ all-encompassing wisdom, dispassionate and even-handed analytical capacity, prophetic track record and multi-track mind to either read Counterpunch regularly or to go onto the man’s own website. The man is a David Ike with degrees in economics.Enjoy while you can (for, according to the good Doctor, the end of the world is nigh)!

  73. “One realises the approach or path is the same having gone through the same gate”

    Indeed, Mark. Who was it said the definition of insanity is doing the same activity to perpetuity, expecting different results?

  74. Habby

    Feel free to rebut Dr Robert’s arguments, rather than your usual cheap jibes.

    Or not.

    He’s had quite an accomplished and full career on the economic frontline, which you can read all about here:


    “Roberts is a graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology and holds a Ph.D. from the University of Virginia. He was a post-graduate at the University of California, Berkeley and at Merton College, Oxford University.[5] His first scholarly article (Classica et Mediaevalia) was a reformulation of “The Pirenne Thesis.”

    In Alienation and the Soviet Economy (1971), Roberts explained the Soviet economy as the outcome of a struggle between inordinate aspirations and a refractory reality. He argued that the Soviet economy was not centrally planned, but that its institutions, such as material supply, reflected the original Marxist aspirations to establish a non-market mode of production. In Marx’s Theory of Exchange (1973), Roberts argued that Marx was an organizational theorist whose materialist conception of history ruled out good will as an effective force for change.

    From 1975 to 1978, Roberts served on the congressional staff. As economic counsel to Congressman Jack Kemp,[6] he drafted the Kemp-Roth bill (which became the Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981). He played a leading role in developing bipartisan support for a supply-side economic policy.[5] Due to his influential 1978 article on tax burden for Harper’s,[7] while economic counsel to Senator Orrin Hatch,[8] the Wall Street Journal editor Robert L. Bartley offered him an editorial slot. He wrote for the WSJ until 1980.[9] He was a senior fellow in political economy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, then part of Georgetown University.[6]

    From early 1981 to January 1982, Roberts served as Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy. President Ronald Reagan and Treasury Secretary Donald Regan credited him with a major role in the Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981, and he was awarded the Treasury Department’s Meritorious Service Award for “outstanding contributions to the formulation of United States economic policy.”[5]

    Roberts resigned in January 1982 to become the first occupant of the William E. Simon Chair for Economic Policy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, then part of Georgetown University.[10] He held this position until 1993. He went on to write The Supply-Side Revolution (1984), in which he explained the reformulation of macroeconomic theory and policy which he had helped to develop.

    From 1993 to 1996, he was a Distinguished Fellow at the Cato Institute. He also was a Senior Research Fellow at the Hoover Institution.[5]

    In The New Color Line (1995), Roberts argued that the Civil Rights Act was subverted by the bureaucrats who applied it. He thought it was being used to create status-based privileges and threatened the equality of the Fourteenth Amendment in whose name it was passed. In The Tyranny of Good Intentions (2000), Roberts documented what he saw as the erosion of the Blackstonian legal principles that ensure that law is a shield of the innocent and not a weapon in the hands of government.
    Honors and recognition

    In 1987 the French government recognized him as “the artisan of a renewal in economic science and policy after half a century of state interventionism”; it inducted him into the Legion of Honor on March 20, 1987. The French Minister of Economics and Finance, Edouard Balladur, came to the US from France to present the medal to Roberts. President Reagan sent OMB Director Jim Miller to the ceremony with a letter of congratulation.[5]

    In 1992 Roberts received the Warren Brookes Award for Excellence in Journalism from the free-market American Legislative Exchange Council. In 1993 the Forbes Media Guide ranked him as one of the top seven journalists in the United States.[5]”

  75. Anyway, Corbie and Ryan Dawson take a look at Ukraine and other issues:


  76. Well, can’t Mary take a few days off to enjoy the warm March weather without causing concern? We haven’t seen it for 5 years.

    Due diligence on the topic of Ukraine before commenting might be another reason for her absence.

    After all Craig lost his job because of frustration with the reckless policy of UK and US torture in the War on Terror. The reckless policies of Putin seems to me to be a bit of a smoke-screen at this moment of time for the reckless policies of the West in using Al Qaida in Syria.

    I come to the conclusion that we are being deliberately protected by our leaders, their cotton=wool media and their former diplomats and generals, from engaging with the main issue of the day, how to strangle the last of the Middle-Eastern dictators, the leaders of Jordan, Syria and Saudi Arabia so that a new, Westernised deal can be constructed with Islam.

    Look look an invasion in Ukraine.
    But I would think that wouldn’t I? Craig is currently deleting comments pointing the wrong way and raising storms in tea-cups about irrelevancies in Ukraine.

  77. “The EU has already agreed to match the US$19 billion in guarantees Putin had promised…”

    The difference is that Putin probably actually has the money.

  78. @John Goss; “If offended it was most likely this comment”

    No John, I don’t think she would take any notice of anything from that particular Poster; if anything it’s more likely to be the Post I highlighted, in which she is rebuked by Craig, for something that she was correctly reporting, and the subsequent resulting lack of an apology; also it cannot have been pleasant for her that a person she obviously admires immensely, starts parroting the same deluded nonsense that a certain group have been hurling at her for the past year.

  79. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    7 Mar, 2014 - 8:38 pm


    “Indeed, Mark. Who was it said the definition of insanity is doing the same activity to perpetuity, expecting different results?”

    Was that supposed to be a definition of the Eminences of this blog?

  80. What is the last thing Putin or any of his oligarchs bought that is made in Russia?

    AK47s, Sukhoi jet fighters, tanks? :-)

    But I guess Craig means consumer goods:


    Light industry

    Textile industries are heavily concentrated in European Russia, especially in the Central region, which produces a large share of the country’s clothing and footwear. Cotton textiles are dominant, with the raw cotton supplied mainly by Central Asian countries. In the zone between the Volga and Oka rivers, east of Moscow, there are numerous cotton-textile towns, the largest of which are Ivanovo, Kostroma, and Yaroslavl. Durable consumer goods (e.g., refrigerators, washing machines, radios, and television sets) are produced primarily in areas with a tradition of skilled industry, notably in and around Moscow and St. Petersburg.

    Not a great exporter of consumer goods like China, but better in manufacturing for example than Australia? (We only ‘invade’ Papua New Guinea and Nauru to create gulags for refugees)

  81. I have only deleted two comments – one for using a racist epithet, and one for accusing me of saying something I had never said. All of the comments which disagree with me are still there otherwise.

  82. @reliably “resources and industry…over time…would seem to offer another path to prosperity”

    If you think that mining and consumption has any long-term future in a global economy already doomed to runaway climate change then I hope you don’t have kids of your own to worry about.

  83. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    7 Mar, 2014 - 8:48 pm


    Well, I’ve been rebuked by Craig as well and survived.

    An internet discussion blog is no place for the excessively thin-skinned.

    And anyway, it wasn’t Mary who asked for an apology – that was some one else, trying to stir up trouble.

  84. In smaller freedom

    7 Mar, 2014 - 8:53 pm

    Sadly, the model for Ukraine’s EU accession is not Poland but Greece: endemic corruption papered over for geopolitical reasons with the population subsequently made to pay with interest. EU accession under current conditions means old ladies eating out of garbage cans and jumping off the roofs.

    And yes, it’s sad that Ukraine has a fake democracy. But for shits & grins I edited your post to globally replace Putin with Pritsker and Yanukovich with Obama, and it fit pretty damn good. Except Penny Pritsker installed her puppet with greater ease (after routine NSA surveillance and vetting.) The US has a fake democracy; Italy, Greece, Spain have fake democracies. The UK has pretty much dropped even the pretense of democracy.

    Very true that Ukraine should not be the object of an EU-Russian tug of war. Why pick sides? Their best bet would be to join the G-77, with which their history and circumstances have much in common. Outside of UNO, which seems to be cut out of this deal, the G-77 is the most trustworthy source of capacity-building in self-determination and rights and rule of law.

  85. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    7 Mar, 2014 - 8:54 pm

    “Durable consumer goods (e.g., refrigerators, washing machines, radios, and television sets) are produced primarily in areas with a tradition of skilled industry, notably in and around Moscow and St. Petersburg.”

    Here are 100 (devalued) Russian rubles that say the Kremlin buys German or Japanese :)

    I’ve read that Uncle Joe’s (the Little Father’s) favorite piped were from Dunhill.

    Not that this is relevant of course.

  86. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    7 Mar, 2014 - 8:56 pm

    Pipes, not piped (sorry, I was choking on my Communist Havana when writing that).

  87. Craig; You must have some rogue moderators.

    On the original Ukraine thread (I think since it is not extant) I just wrote a warning wrt JTRIG sock-puppets protocols proscribe providing ANY information because it is too difficult to assess whether the information will be helpful to a target. Therefore it’s best not to provide ANY information. I didn’t mention any posters or refer to trolls, but Hab made a comment prior to my deleted. First the post was scrubbed and the comment ‘completely off topic’ was visible. Minutes later the entire presence was scrubbed.

    Two deleted posts seemed too low a number.

  88. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    7 Mar, 2014 - 9:02 pm


    ““The EU has already agreed to match the US$19 billion in guarantees Putin had promised…”

    The difference is that Putin probably actually has the money.”

    Witty, but not really relevant. Loan guarantees are what they say – guarantees. The guarantor only has to cough up when the guarantee actually defaults, you see. And, by the way, loan guarantees don’t come for free – the guarantee usually has to pay a fee.

    But correct me if I’m wrong, some one.

  89. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    7 Mar, 2014 - 9:06 pm


    “I didn’t mention any posters or refer to trolls, but Hab made a comment prior to my deleted.”

    So perhaps the moderator thought your post was an attack on me? Perish the thought!

  90. @uzbek “I have been living in the UK for some years now, but I never seen toilet without sewage in the UK” – yer want to come up to Suffolk boy, we’ve got lots of ‘em.

    So many pundits looking at the world through the lens of the bourgeois myth of “progress”, every damn one of you. What Ukraine has is fertile land and a small population to enjoy it. When all your IMF loans and measures of “standard of living” have fallen into the cauldron of climate chaos and technological breakdown, what remains of the population of “Ukraine” will do just fine I’ll wager.

  91. technicolour

    7 Mar, 2014 - 9:20 pm

    Ash toilets are fine, if you have the land. Urine is a powerful fertiliser thanks to the urea content (apparently they used to use it in the famed orchid greenhouses of Singapore, possibly still do). Progress along the lines of received wisdom is not all it’s made up to be, you do know that?

  92. technicolour

    7 Mar, 2014 - 9:40 pm

    Course, if you actually read the piece:

    “Serhiy Astakhov, aide to the head of border guards service, told Reuters the figure was an estimate”

  93. Where is General Accounting when you need them? We need an audit. Stat !

  94. Craig’s version of events may be true but it omits a key factor from Russia’s point of view – NATO.

    Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Kremlin has suspected that NATO (ie the US) was determined to move its forces ever closer to the Russian border in order to maximize its military and political leverage over Moscow.

    Who can blame them? The world is dominated by an imperial power to an extent hitherto unknown in human history, and that power has been intent on “containing” Russia and China – its only potential rivals – for the past 70 years. Would British “leaders” have reacted differently in the same circumstances, given that Obama was pressing Kiev to permit NATO military exercises in Ukraine?

    (By the way, it may be satisfying to compare Putin’s actions to those of Hitler in the 1930s, but it doesn’t get us anywhere. The US invaded Mexico in the 1840s and annexed much of what is now the American West, to the enduring chagrin of the Mexicans. Britain spent much of the past 200 years invading, occupying and despoiling places all over the world. By these standards, Putin has committed an unfortunate indiscretion).

  95. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 9:50 pm

    John Goss,

    “Whatever Putin’s tactics in the election of Yanukovich it was Yanukovich who was in power when overthrown by a rogue element from among the protestors.”

    Cheers men. Rouge elements you say? Is that what you are branding some protesters now? I shall remember this. In May 2005 hundreds of protesters were killed in Uzbek city of Andijan, by another elected (and legitimate) president. That time so called “rouge protesters” lost. But John Goss gives no sh..t. They were rouge anyway.

  96. I recommend this Russian blogger living in Florida; here is an excellent piece about Russia after Yeltsin, and he writes a lot about Ukraine too


  97. Rouge should be rogue, unless you meant Reds under the bed.

  98. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 9:57 pm

    “Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Kremlin has suspected that NATO (ie the US) was determined to move its forces ever closer to the Russian border in order to maximize its military and political leverage over Moscow.”

    It is indeed very common believe amongst KGB. And since they rule Russia today it is indeed common believe in Russia today. But fact is that it is Russia today who is blackmailing Europe (most of whom are NATO members) not at least with energy as a weapon. How does NATO expansion rhetoric explains this?

  99. Sofia Kibo Noh

    7 Mar, 2014 - 9:58 pm

    Grownups .

    Look. Whatever the truth about Putin (Prince of Darkness), the known facts just don’t support the narrative that our corporate media would have us believe.

    Just to name a few:

    Nuland’s “$5 billion to destabilise Ukraine boast”.

    Nuland’s hacked “Fuck the EU” and micro-manage the coup hacked phonecall.

    The “Russian Invasion” of Ukraine.

    Third Party Snipers.

    The legality of the new Ukraine “government”.

    I could go on and on…… but I’ll spare you all. I’m sure you get what I’m driving at and it either confirms or contradicts your beliefs.

    Whatever is the truth about Putin, there are Millions of Russians, but also many Ukrainians, Europeans and Americans whose lives are touched in one way or another by what happened last time US financial elites sponsored the seizure of power by fascists in Europe. For them, whether the nominal head of state in Russia is Putin or Noddy, the sentiment of “Never Again” is more than an empty slogan and they will act on this in whatever ways they can.

    “Ceux qui peuvent vous faire croire à des absurdités peuvent vous faire commettre des atrocités” Voltaire

  100. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 10:01 pm


    This is VERY BLOODY low from troll blogger with ribbon of St George and Russia stands for freedom motto.

    “Politkovskaya “murdered by KGB goons”

    Do you question this? Is this also CIA propoganda?

  101. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 10:03 pm

    Cheers Ben. Will be more careful with words next time.

  102. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 10:11 pm

    In Smaller Freedom
    7 Mar, 2014 – 8:53 pm

    I still say give Ukraine a chance. I read that some lefties claimed that it would take Germany half a century to pay for unification and yet it did not turn out to be that bad.

    You are not suggesting that it would be better for Ukraine to be like Belarus, do not you?

  103. Uzbek in the UK,

    Your point is similar to the argument that China can ‘blackmail’ the US because it’s Washington’s biggest creditor. In fact, the two are inextricably dependent on each other, just as Russia and the EU now are. Cutting off energy supplies to the EU would hurt Russia as well as the EU so any attempt at ‘blackmail’ would be foolish. I think Putin genuinely wants to settle this dispute now but, assuming that Obama also wants a settlement, events may have moved too far to permit a quick solution.

  104. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 10:16 pm

    Sofia Kibo Noh
    7 Mar, 2014 – 9:58 pm

    It was actually many more Belorussians and Ukrainians who were killed or died because of Nazi occupation. 1 in 4 in Belarus and 1 in 8 in Ukraine.

  105. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 10:22 pm


    Never underestimate KGB officer. Yes, gas blackmail could hurt Russia, but it is Putin who has better cards in this play. We have witnessed gas blockade (by Russia) few years ago. Turned out to be more devastating for Europeans (eastern mostly) than for Kremlin.

    Comparison with China although seem to be relevant but in fact Communist government in Beijing seem to be more into profit making and economy first, than seemingly market economy Russia under KGB leadership.

  106. technicolour

    7 Mar, 2014 - 10:22 pm

    “Where is General Accounting when you need them? We need an audit” – no, you need better sources.

  107. “Never underestimate KGB officer. Yes, gas blackmail could hurt Russia, but it is Putin who has better cards in this play. We have witnessed gas blockade (by Russia) few years ago. Turned out to be more devastating for Europeans (eastern mostly) than for Kremlin.”

    But that wasn’t political, that was business, if someone refuses to pay the gas company their gas gets cut off. The gas to Europe wasn’t cut off, the gas to Europe was stolen.

  108. Ben

    Sorry, honestly don’t know – we do have volunteer mods who try to keep the personal abuse down. I don’t supervise on a comment by comment basis.

  109. technicolour

    7 Mar, 2014 - 10:34 pm

    “Never underestimate KGB officer” – I would always underestimate KGB officer, just for the fun of it. Honestly they’re nothing, compared to the peaceful centre.

  110. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 10:35 pm

    Russian forces stormed Ukrainian base in Sevastopol, Crimea

    Use translate http://lenta.ru/news/2014/03/07/storm/

  111. Uzbek in the UK

    7 Mar, 2014 - 10:40 pm


    You can put it this way. Or any other way Mr Putin puts it.

    The fact was that Europeans were left without gas supply for over 2 weeks, while Europeans were paying for gas with no delays. May be Russia needs to diversify its gas delivery to Europe. Or even better let Europeans to diversify their gas supply, from Central Asia for instance? Is this not pure business too, or politics after all?

  112. “You can put it this way. Or any other way Mr Putin puts it.”

    I can just tell it how it is.

    Fact is Russia put the gas for Europe into the pipe.

    Fact is it was syphoned off before it got to it’s destination. Unless you’re suggesting Russia should have put troops into a sovereign state to protect the gas in transit.

    Fact is there was no blockade of European gas by Russia.

    Fact is Europe was not left without gas for two weeks because it was only pipelines through Ukraine that were affected, the pipes through Belarus carried on delivering and Europe only gets a third of their gas from Russia anyway.

    If that interferes with what you want to believe it isn’t my fault.

  113. If Russian backed rebels managed to pull off a coup in Britain then I would imagine a very big majority of Brits would welcome unmarked US troops defending the country, and although I would be rather surprised if we would go so far as to vote to join America, the US could engineer a reverse take over and petition the Crown to resume her head as head of the US, which would kind of legitimise such action. But quite frankly in these circumstances action comes first and legitimacy second.

    Of course I have no evidence of Western or American backing for the Ukrainian coup, but even if there was none the Russian action is still basically an obvious reaction that was pretty much likely to occur. after the coup. Was the coup planned or was it a response. I have no idea as to the extent which these events are partly planned and if so by who / who was the leader planner, whether both sides saw what was coming and gamed it accordingly, nor as to where either see the end game???

  114. At the time I followed the alleged Yushchenko assassination attempt very closely. It was claimed to be by dioxin poisoning. There was never any convincing evidence presented in the media that he even had dioxin in his system. This story was weird from the very beginning. No self respecting assassin would even try to use dioxin in the first place. It is just not that toxic with an LS50 in the grams. The main symptom he displayed was a severe rosacea. This could be caused by dioxin intoxication but it is a symptom with many causes — the most common being excessive alcohol intake over a long period of time.

    Why is Craig so sure it was an assassination attempt and what evidence was there, if it was, that it was done by Russian agents? I suspect excessive dislike of the Russians is affecting his judgement.

  115. Oh come on I can recognise that there is some logic to Russia’s action in the Crimea, but the poisoning of Yushchenko was a pretty obvious case of poisoning.

  116. It appears that Mary’s champion achieved, in just a few posts, what her enemies could not in thousands.

  117. BrianFujisan

    7 Mar, 2014 - 11:57 pm

    Was over at mondoweiss there…

    Some interesting Discussion Re Nuland, her husband and Co…All the Crazy Connections…it’s a Dazzling web indeed… But far from Healthy for Humanity and any kind of peace…any time soon

    Here is part of a post by – Bandolero –

    What could be the overall motive behind all this?

    Quote Clifford A. Kiracofe, former senior professional staff member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations:

    “… Western media reported the vulgar remarks concerning the EU by Victoria Nuland, who is US assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs.

    The media refrained from reporting that Nuland is the wife of Robert Kagan who is a key leader of the pro-Zionist neoconservative policy network.

    It is well known that the staunchly pro-Israel neoconservatives express deep political and cultural aversion to Russia, and promote Cold War perspectives. Such a mindset undermines US global diplomacy and US national interests.
    Thus Ms Nuland is the wrong person for a high US diplomatic position, critics say.

    Using the Ukraine crisis to subvert major power relations between the US and Russia and their constructive joint action in the Middle East serves Israeli interests. It helps Israel and its neoconservative allies in the US and in Europe push for unilateral US military action against Syria and Iran. …”

    And Here is a reply from Annie Robbins, Editor at Large for Mondoweiss

    and robert’s bro is Frederick Kagan married to kimberly kagan president of the Institute for the Study of War, the same institute elizabeth o’bagy worked for. remember her? the ‘expert’ who kerry cited alleging the a jihadist-dominated opposition in syria was ‘moderate’. the same institute pushing us to invade Syria?

    The Full Article includes part of a Putin interview,

    From Time Magazine 2007 “Person of the Year” Interview:

    ” For 15 years, we were selling them energy resources way below the market prices subsidized to the tune of $3 billion to $5 billion a year for Ukraine. This cannot last forever. The Europeans are always criticizing us. They want us to introduce international pricing standards. Otherwise, they say, our enterprises would enjoy an unfair advantage over European enterprises. So within the country we should sell at world prices while to our neighbors we should sell below the world prices? This is discrimination.

    More of this Piece @


  118. I’ve no doubt Mary will be back.

    For a year or two i thought i sensed this blog was under concerted Sayanim/troll attack but then it seemed to be that Mary herself was more attacked on a personal basis.

    An ugly tactic-if true.

    Ive been on this blog for 8 years or so and,in my opinion,a year or two back it seemed Habbabkuk and friends invaded this blog and targeted her with personal and unsettling tactics-not points of fact ordiscussion.

    Very sinister.

    She seemed to be under concerted attack from about 8,or more,at once.

    Not nice.

    Which is insane because i’ve never thought of Mary as an anti-Semite at all…just a pro-Palestinian.

    I’ve no doubt Mary will return imminently.

    She is a part of this blog as much as anyone-and i know she doesn’t need my support or backup.

  119. BrianFujisan

    8 Mar, 2014 - 12:28 am

    Well Said Jives…

    Alcanon, and myself expressed our hope that Mary is ok…on Wednesday – over at Alcanon’s Squonk blog….

    But the thing is, Mary has went silent from over there Too… I hope she’s not ill or something.

  120. Uzbek – I heard Dick Cheney accusing Russia of using blackmail and intimidation in its energy policy towards Europe in 2006! Russia is sadly an intimate partner in the Western financial ponzi scheme system with financial assets in the City of London corporation, the dark heart of Britain.

    Capital needed to develop more energy fields (increased consumption has depleted North sea reserves) is raised through Western banks as Russian listed companies on the European stock-exchange, so risking revenue for political ends would be financial suicide. Russia is also dependent on Europe for exports.

    Money rules dude (Russia/Israel energy contract?!!) and commercial suicide would threaten Russia’s existence esp. in these moments before fiat collapse. (start being self-sufficient- it makes sense)

  121. Brian,

    Mary’s emailed me before about squonk stuff so I’ve sent an email to her just to check all is okay. Hope she’s just away for a bit.

    Fred, I cleared your comment over there.

  122. Before retiring I have a question for Uzbek in the UK. The Andijan Massacre was a massacre by government forces upon unharmed protestors by a government which NATO countries, including the UK are happy to support. It is NATO countries too that are supporting the newly-formed and unelected government. It was NATO countries in the run-up to the Iraq War who talked about Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction and a 45 minute delivery capability – all a pack of lies. The Ukraine and Uzbekistan are different countries. The Ukraine has already had several different governments, and a good few of those who have stolen power were in government before and responsible for the terrible economic situation. Karimov has been in dictatorial power for twenty four years. Yanukovich only for four. Think about it.

    Do you trust the the governments that lied over Iraq, have introduced anti-terrorism laws by which people can be imprisoned without trial, extradited, rendered or deported countless Muslims to be telling the truth and interested in the welfare of Ukrainians?

    By the way nobody, as far as I know has posted the link to Michael Andersen’s Massacre in Uzbekistan more than me so I wish you would stop telling people I support it.


  123. BrianFujisan

    8 Mar, 2014 - 12:56 am

    Good stuff Alcanon…

    could be just some mad Techy P.c Trouble.

  124. When people from the Ukrainian SSR travelled to the Baltic states and other Soviet block countries in the 1980s, they invariably reported that the standard of living was better there. After the disintegration of the Soviet block it was evident that the parts of the Soviet empire that had been subjugated more recently were recovering more quickly econimically. There may be complex reasons for this but one explanation popular in the Ukraine is that 80 years of communism is infinitely more destructive than 40 years, to the mentailty of the people. The Baltic states, Poland, Hungary and so on still had many people alive who remembered how a civilised country should function. There were no such people left in Ukraine and the rest of the USSR. If this thesis is right then we cannot conclude that Ukraine integrating more closely with the EU would result in a rapid economic revival similar to what happened in Poland. The results may be disappointing.

  125. Craig,

    Do you think Putin intends to move beyond Crimea?

  126. Craig

    reading your simple narrative bellow
    “Income, lifestyle, education, health and social security for ordinary people are far better in western and central Europe than they are in Russia. The standard of living for ordinary Polish people in Poland has caught up at a tremendous rate towards the rest of the EU. I am not depending on statistics here – I have lived in Poland, travelled widely in Poland and speak Polish. I was professionally involved in the process of Polish economic transformation. There have been a large number of commenters on this blog this last few days who deny that the standard of living for ordinary people in Poland is better as a result of EU membership, and believe life for ordinary people is better in Russia than in the west. “

    I agree that Poland is somewhat better off, although I know many Poles who are less convinced than you. What you present here is a faulty extrapolation of how Ukraine may hypothetically prosper by joining (well not for a long time) the EU while using Poland as an example. Hmm, what a pious thought. What about the other so called “new” EU members? How have Bulgaria, Romania, or the “old” member Greece prospered after joining EU? Have you ever travelled recently anywhere south of Naples? I bet you have not. I am not foolish enough to claim that it is all a fault of EU membership but where is the prosperity??

  127. BrianFujisan

    8 Mar, 2014 - 1:48 am

    An Appeal From the Communist Party of Ukraine (CPU) –

    In an open appeal to international communist, workers’ and left parties, the Communist Party of Ukraine (CPU) warns that their country is the latest to fall victim to the “colour revolutions.”

    Fuelling the escalation of the conflict, says the CPU, is the political support of the Western powers in Ukraine. The U.S. State Department constantly demands that the Ukrainian authorities negotiate with the opposition, withdraw all law enforcement officers from Kiev, and allow the “opposition” to seize the government and reverse laws adopted by the Parliament of Ukraine.

    Contrary to descriptions in the corporate media, these laws are consistent with similar legislation in the West, such as the requirement that public organizations financed from abroad must register as foreign agents. Many western countries have implemented laws to prohibit protesters from hiding their faces, or from using helmets and shields during demonstrations.

    The Communist Party of Ukraine says it believes that “the responsibility for the violence equally rests on Ukraine’s leadership, whose actions forced the people of Ukraine to enter the mass protests, and leaders of the so‑called `opposition’, the ultra‑nationalist militant organizations and foreign politicians who urged people to `radicalize the protests’ and `fight to the bitter end.’”

    The CPU is calling for an end to the use of force, non-interference in the internal affairs of Ukraine, and negotiations to end the conflict. The attempts to create parallel structures of authority, they say, threaten to escalate the conflict into civil war and a division of Ukraine.

    In these circumstances, the Communist Party of Ukraine presents concrete proposals to resolve the situation:

    – Declare a Ukrainian referendum on the definition of foreign economic policy of Ukraine’s integration.

    – Conduct a political reform to eliminate the presidency and install a parliamentary republic, and significantly expand the rights of territorial communities.

    – Return to a proportional voting electoral system.

    – Establish an independent civilian “National control” body with the broadest powers.

    – Conduct judicial reform and introduce the institution of electing judges.

    The CPU also urges international condemnation of extremist actions, fascist propaganda, and external interference in the internal affairs of Ukraine.

    Full Appeal statement @


  128. Uzbek in disguise,

    Do you work full time for some NGO intended on bringing democracy to many unfortunate countries thus targeted? I can be wrong but you are neither Uzbek nor in the UK. My guess is that you have been a sleeper for some time recently brought to life by a call from…., well I rather leave this one out.

  129. The ‘gift’ of Crimea to the Ukrainian SSR was not made for obscure reasons. It was done ostensibly to commemorate 300 years of the ‘unification’ of Russia and Ukraine. Scholars of Ukrainian history will know that the deal concluded by Bohdan Hmelnytsky in 1654 at Pereyaslav was indeed a more or less voluntary one, though his options were limited (Poland, Turkey or Russia, take your pick. Attempts at independence would have been extremely short-lived). It did not take long before this ‘union of equals’ was transformed into complete subjugation of Ukraine by Russia. So this was a big deal, the maintenance of the myth. But behind the scenes there was another reality – after the forceful deportation of the Tatars the economy of Crimea was nowhere and a concerted effort to revive it was needed. The agricultural statistics from “Crimean Pravda” tell the story, e.g. average productivity of grain cultures, fruit, tobacco, wine, potatoes etc all fell between 2 and 5 fold in the years after the war. People with agricultural expertise relevant to the southern climate were needed. Water was diverted from Dnieper for irrigation. After the hand-over, the responsibility for economic revival of Crimea belonged to the Ukrainian SSR. The source is here, in Ukrainian: http://www.istpravda.com.ua/articles/2014/03/3/26135/

  130. Perhaps Craig is right and the Russian speaking Ukrainians in the east feel predominantly loyal to Kiev. I know that in my home town in south Ukraine where people often speak Ukrainian in the home and (through habit mostly) Russian in the street, this is the case. But be warned, the ‘cossacks’ you see on TV beating up Pussy Riot girls for simply speaking their minds, etc are the descendants of ethnic Ukrainians who were relocated to the Khanate of Crimea lands by the Russians to protect the southern frontier. These people still sing Ukrainian folk songs, but their allegiances are not with Kiev.

  131. Uzbek in disguise,

    Having noticed your valuable contributions

    Yes. In fact East Germany (despite being Germany) was one of the least developed eastern block could only be compared to Romania of that time.”

    Excelent news, I must say. Craig will undoubtedly agree with your claim as he among other languages also speaks German. Unfortunately, I have to revise my rather poor opinion of you. You must be member of one of the top class think tanks, could it be Brookings? I read somelaim sit a aions could only be compared to Romania of that time.ut top class inst

  132. Uzbek in disguise,

    have not finished with you yet. My computer is fucked (not by the fuck-EU-Nuland-nudel, I hope) after having visited some really evil sites. So the last sentence should read:

    Having heard somewhere that experts from Brookings can identify what you had for lunch by sniffing your farts, I wonder whether it can be true.

  133. Ukraine apparently needs $15 billion right now, and the EU is kindly willing to lend it, provided the government of Ukraine brings in an austerity package, including cuts to pensions, elimination of jobs, etc.

    But Ukraine’s 13 billionaires have a combined net worth of $61 billion, so why don’t they simply impose a one-time 25% capital tax, and eliminate the deficit at a stroke. They’d still need some austerity to avoid future unpayable deficits, but at least they’d be at a better starting point.

    This proposal will of course horrify the globalists like Craig for whom a global system run by plutocrats is the objective, so I guess the Ukrainians should be looking to Greece and Latvia to understand their own future: i.e., mass emigration of the best and brightest of the younger generation, plus massive unemployment among the rest, while global capital mops up the best waterfront real estate at knock-down prices, etc.

    I wonder though, if shooting demonstrators pour encouragez les autres is seen as an OK way to promote the globalist project, won’t the globalist vision lose some of its lustre? Certainly the revelation that all members of the present government have a “dirty past” according to the foreign minister of Estonia, and that the US spend $5 billion arranging the Kiev coup, according to Vicky Nuland, seems to rob the whole wonderful concept of Western-style democracy of some of its allure.

  134. Black jelly

    8 Mar, 2014 - 4:18 am

    By ToivoS

    “Why is Craig so sure it was an assassination attempt and what evidence was there, if it was, that it was done by Russian agents? I suspect excessive dislike of the Russians is affecting his judgement.”

    Mebbe he hasnt reached the nadir of his love and affection for the callous NWO sniping devils of the Maidan ! The rap artists call it “pussy power”, poor Mordechai Vanunu spent 18 years in jail after being mesmerised by it in Rome.

  135. I don’t share your optimism of centres of concentrated power. Seems historically stupid to wish to see them.

  136. Andrew Nichols

    8 Mar, 2014 - 6:27 am

    Could the real Russian anxiety be less the EU membership than yet another NATO colony on their doorstep? You fail to mention that Gorbachev admin wound up the warsaw Pact peacefully in return for a pledge not to expand NATO eastward. This was not only broken within a year but now Moscow has a missile shield on its borders, which laughably the media swallows as being for defence against Iranian missiles.

    You also dismiss western interference as being no more than catalytic. Really? US$5bn invested in Ukrainian institutions by the supposedly debt ridden USA as revealed by Nuland was just catalytic???
    Disappointed in your article.

  137. I normally applaud the sane comments from Craig on this blog,but I rather think the anti-Putin Western hysteria has gotten to him. Certainly the man is authoritarian and presumably has a violent background from KGB days-and I would certainly not want him as my President!-but clearly 70% of the Russian population do-and it would appear a good percentage of Eastern Ukraine as well! (by the way, Russian unemployment is currently 5%)

    This whole incident is a direct result of Western intelligence, commercial and state entities determined to eliminate any potential for a resurgence of Russian international influence. How many Russian speaking Ukrainians ultimately identify with Kiev rather than Russia is anybody’s guess at this point -I would watch Donestsk for clues…
    The antipathy of many Western Ukrainians to Russia is also very understandable-
    a little history tells us why…

  138. Craig. Your piece is nothing but a load of speculative anti-Putin crap. Are you trying to worm your way back into favour with the foreign office – or are you that desperate for money? I cannot believe that you are just stupid and actually believe the garbage put out by the various US MSM stations – maybe you are angling for an interview or a minor position with the Gardian. Pathetic garbage – you have lost it.

  139. Sofia Kibo Noh

    8 Mar, 2014 - 6:48 am

    Dad. 7 38 pm yesterday.

    I agree with 95% of what you wrote.”
    Remember, this is the genius who wishes to solve the wider problem by having the Russian populations of the Baltic states expelled.

    Kurtan. 7 56pm

    “Mobile phone age,reports of troop movements,no restrictions on movement, just approaching bases. If there were large troop movments someone would have recorded them. They haven’t happened.”

    Is it conceivable that the corporate media would miss the propaganda opportunities that such crowd-sourced reports would provide if they existed?

  140. Sofia Kibo Noh

    8 Mar, 2014 - 7:10 am

    Creative suggestions for how to treat Crimea’s secessionists from Kiev’s newly-appointed deputy head of south-eastern Ukraine.

    “This scum should be given promises, guarantees, and any concessions…And hung…They should be hung later.”


  141. Uzbek

    “This is VERY BLOODY low from troll blogger with ribbon of St George and Russia stands for freedom motto.

    “Politkovskaya “murdered by KGB goons”

    Do you question this? Is this also CIA propoganda?”

    Well, that would certainly be their modus operandi, don’t you think? Murder a well known opponent of the public person you want to smear? And it was immediately pinned on Putin in the Western press, before any investigation. That’s a giveaway.

    By the way, I thought Putin was a chessplayer?

  142. Russia transports its gas to Germany through the Nord Stream, into the Opal and Nel pipelines. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OPAL_pipeline

    These pipelines were constructed to avoid using the Ukraine and Belarus pipelines. Russia, appears to have taken the burden to be a reliable supplier of its gas to Germany. I’m making this point because there have been a few comments that don’t seem to be aware of this fact. I understand (I might be wrong on this) that Gazrprom owns the gas pipelines that go through the Ukraine, but their use is not as important now.

    I think that Russia wants the Crimea because of its strategic military position, especially after “Yats”, as Nuland calls him, stated that he did not want the Crimea to be a Russian base (see Wikepedia Yatsenyuk). I can see Putin being nervous that Russia might lose that piece of real estate after spilling so much blood to secure it during the Crimean War. Taking it now will remove any need for agreements with any Kiev government in the future. I can also see why Russia would want the eastern portion of the Ukraine. Russia would benefit with more arable land. It seems that Russia had designs on the Ukraine, and the EU and the U.S. should have taken that into account. To quote Sun Tzu, “The Art of War.” “We cannot enter into alliances until we are acquainted with the designs of our neighbors.”

  143. One last point. Russia, I think wants what the Ukraine has (geographic position and arable land), while the U.S. and the EU want, as Craig Murray says, to make Russia part of the EU, piece by piece. Russia has the raw materials that Germany and the U.S. want at a cheapest price possible. Nobody is the good guy in the fight for the Ukraine. One thing is clear: the Ukrainians will lose the half price gas they desperately need right now when their coffers are empty. There’s no way the EU can give anything close to that benefit that the Russians are willing to absorb. Not freezing in the winter adds to the standard of living now, not years from now.

  144. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    8 Mar, 2014 - 7:50 am


    Thank you for confirming all the good things I wrote about the Eminences’ new hero-cum-guru Dr Paul Craig Roberts and then adding some.


    “From early 1981 to January 1982, Roberts served as Assistant Secretary of the Treasury”


    “He wrote for the WSJ until 1980″

    And it’s true that he has a doctorate.

    Finally, I’m happy – but somewhat surprised – that you should see his erstwhile fellowship at the Cato Institute (look it up!) as a feather in his cap and an earnest of the soundness of his views on political economy. You’re progressing!

  145. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    8 Mar, 2014 - 7:59 am

    Hi Glenn_uk

    “It appears that Mary’s champion achieved, in just a few posts, what her enemies could not in thousands.”

    Would you agree that this – if it is fact the reason for Mary’s “disappearance – demonstrates the dangers of posters taking our host and his considered opinions for granted?

    Would be happy, btw, to see more posts from you.

  146. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    8 Mar, 2014 - 8:09 am

    Evgueni (01h23)

    I would agree with what you say and also with your conclusion. However, although the process will – for the reasons you point to – take longer than it did for Poland, I think Ukraine would get there in the end…if allowed to.

    An important factor in this crisis seems to be Kremlin fear of the “contagion effect” on Russia and its people: the prospect of a former part of the USSR (as opposed to Poland, which was only an unwilling part of the Soviet Empire – achieving a higher standard of democracy and well-being must be deeply troubling for the Kremlin.

  147. Craig, I would appreciate it if you could provide a link for a single “uprising” against the Ukranian government in the east. One that garnered more than a few people. By gvernment, I mean the one that existed before the western engineered, neo-fascist led coup d’etat. I have heard of just a couple of “gatherings” in the East. may be not enough of the “Right sector” and “svoboda” types there?

    I realize you don’t like oligarchs. So what do you think when the so-called new regime (cf. coup installed) has as one of its first acts, the isntallation of oligarchs (one not even residing in the Ukraine) as “governors”? quite confidence inspiring, and oh so brilliant. Almost as brilliant as having a western favored oligarch as the new “president”, and a cuddly IMF favorite as the prime whatever (“minister” i think they call it).

    Sorry to see you so anti-Russian (yes, I know you’ll say it’s just Putin, but Putin IS what the Russians wanted, and for a good reason – they were under the reign on that yeltsiin idiot robbed blind by the lovable “west” and their own nouveau riche oligarchs. Some were kicked out, some imprisoned, and some are still around. what else is new? and how is this different than the West especially the US where the top 1% own over 40% of the wealth?).

    Just saying.

  148. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    8 Mar, 2014 - 8:27 am

    Karel – who seems well acquainted with Craig’s travel history – writes:

    “I agree that Poland is somewhat better off, although I know many Poles who are less convinced than you. What you present here is a faulty extrapolation of how Ukraine may hypothetically prosper by joining (well not for a long time) the EU while using Poland as an example. Hmm, what a pious thought. What about the other so called “new” EU members? How have Bulgaria, Romania, or the “old” member Greece prospered after joining EU?”

    1/. Poland is a lot better off than “somewhat”, I think.

    2/. Could you explain in more detail why you think Craig’s “extrapolation” is faulty in your opinion?

    3/. Conditions – including economic – in Bulgaria and Romania are improving, but the process takes time. If you like, take Austria as an example – it was still a relatively poor country well into the 1960s but look at it now.

    4/. The other EU member state you mention is Greece. I don’t know if you followed Greece since the fall of the dictatorship, but anyone who did – including by actually visiting the country – could not have failed to notice the astonishing improvement in living standards and prosperity until the recent crash. As evidenced, inter alia, by the very steep decline in the number of people emigrating for economic reasons.

  149. tell the truth

    8 Mar, 2014 - 8:55 am

    Zionists don’t like Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, reason, he tells the truth about Israel.


  150. Sofia Kibo Noh

    8 Mar, 2014 - 9:31 am

    You couldn’t make it up.

    US President Barack Obama has signed an executive order authorizing sanctions against “individuals and entities responsible for activities undermining democratic processes or institutions in Ukraine.”…YES WE CAN!


  151. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    8 Mar, 2014 - 9:39 am

    “Zionists don’t like Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, reason, he tells the truth about Israel.”

    Fair enough, it’s a free country. Ron Paul likes Paul Craig Roberts though, and Paul Craig Roberts is quite a fan of Ron Paul. Hmmmm….

    Anyway, let’s stay on topic, shall we?

  152. This is off-topic but relates in some way to the question I asked Uzbek in the UK in my last comment. Who are the liars?


  153. @Prabhata,

    “Russia transports its gas to Germany through the Nord Stream.” Maybe the aim of the zios is to ensure that Germany should never again have access to gas in case they misuse it.

  154. Not funny Clarence.

  155. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    8 Mar, 2014 - 10:27 am

    Do commenters feel that it would be a good idea if OSCE observer teams were allowed into the Crimea in the run-up to, and during, the forthcoming referendum?

  156. @John Goss,

    Thank you for tour link.

    I am not a young man and happily went along with events as they were reported. I considered myself moderately right wing economically and left wing socially. I was content to read the Spectator weekly and the Guardian daily to keep up to date; and of course I believed everything I saw on BBC (or ABC since I emigrated).

    The events of – and especially the reporting of – 9/11 changed everything. My eyes were opened. All we are told now is spin and lies, and once you realise that you begin to check out past historical events, particularly wartime reporting. All is propaganda I soon discovered. It is difficult to go into more detail in a blog message but please take the courage to check all of the facts, especially historical “facts” that are proscribed without risking legal pursuit, at least in Europe. I truly was utterly shocked, considering how I was brought up (? brainwashed) in post-war Scotland.

    It is sad for me to see that Craig has apparently relapsed and now believes the current spin. Maybe Putin fucked his wife or something.

  157. @ John Goss,

    It was not a joke and not intended to be funny. Just sad, so sad, and not much different from a sad clown, not really funny.

  158. Clarence I am not young either. 9/11, together with the legitimacy of government in the Ukraine and the murder of Mark Duggan, are among the very few issues on which Craig and I disagree. I would not insult him or make nasty comments about his wife however frustrated I am. I think you should apologise for that.

    While you and I share common ground over 9/11 and the Ukraine I think it is important that respect is shown to others. After all we are allowed to comment here largely without restriction and I think especially that people who share my ideas should show respect to those who don’t because otherwise we are unlikely to win over public opinion.

    Otherwise I’m with you, and have recently changed my own opinion in now believing that an independent Scotland is the way forward. Perhaps the rest of us can learn from it.

  159. Russkies are a proud tribe, bright, educated and funny, with a long history centred somewhere around Kiev, Novgorod and Vladimir/Moscow, a world-class literature and a well-recognised love for the arts. Whenever I’ve met one I’ve usually liked ‘em and I urge anybody who reads these scribblings to take that prejudice into account. One way or another, then, I’m sure that Mr. Murray is right when he says that Russia is a member of the European family.

    However, I am not sure why that would automatically make membership of the E.U. desirable – after all, it doesn’t for Norway or Switzerland.

    Then there is the factor of Russian nationalism – one which isn’t attenuated by playing geopolitical games with them and trying to hem them into a corner – albeit a very large one. Mr. Murray has also mentioned some rather unpleasant domestic aspects of Russian nationalism; do we want to incorporate that into our nice little family?

    E.U. membership would also mean that the Fourth Reich extended from Kerry to Vladivostok and no doubt took in Ukraine and Moldova and quite possibly Georgia and Armenia as well. At what point does all this become unmanageable? There would be a fairly porous border with the ‘stans’ of Central Asia as well. Remember, too, the disputed border with China in the far east – a large and expanding population on one side and a sparse population on the other. I think we’d be safer leaving that one to Moscow and Peking to sort out.

    I think it is worth factoring in to this equation the fact that fossil fuels and certain natural resources are running out quite quickly. That means that our current idea of economic “advancement” upon which many programmes are implicitly predicated are completely unsustainable. In a hundred years, people could look back on us as we look back on World War One and wonder what the blazes we thought we were playing at.

  160. Ok John,

    I duly do apologise to Craig – although I think he is very wrong on this I have no idea as to his thoughts or motives. But is still a sad day when such a noble man starts defending the MSM/NATO crap.

    As to your post, please keep the pressure on by repeated links, and please do consider looking into the WWII lies and exaggerations,particularly if 9/11 is shown to be a nuclear event, See:

  161. “And European Union will never be complete until Russia, one of the greatest of European cultures, is a member.”

    This statement I agree with, it is the means in which it is being done that is wrong. In a way I think up to this crisis Putin was going about democratising Russia to make it compatible with the better-governed western-European countries in the right way. To suddenly bring it all the benefits of the west: massive unemployment, unpayable debts, destruction of press freedom, war and the stealing of resources, all at once it is being done gradually. I don’t like the new UK. I can remember when public utilities were nationalised, when bills rose in line with erarnings, and bankers were not payed enormous bonuses for destroying economies. If the change was too sudden in Russia people would think back to the days when there were no university fees, public transport was affordable, everybody had work, and so on. To force the issue is only likely to raise the hackles of the Russian government.

    Why I believe it necessary that Russi “one of the greatest of European cultures” should be a member of the European Union is because we need a huge power block to oppose the imperialist aims of the United States. But we also need to get rid of the Neo-cons and Zionists that have ruined Europe.

  162. Clarence thanks. Here is something that everybody who does not believe that the twin towers is a false flag should watch. It is 45 minutes long, but well worth watching.


  163. “There has been a coup d’etat in the Ukraine”

    “According to Wimmer, the intention of the US in the Ukraine is to split Europe one more time.”

    By Lars Schall


  164. Someone 8 Mar, 2014 – 7:45 am

    The NYT article you link to seems to be behind a paywall. The first half is mostly about how the naughty UK is not supporting the brave US in sanctions against Russia. Here’s the second half. Pretty funny coming from the NYT but undeniably has the ring of truth:

    Tony Blair is the latter-day embodiment of pirate Britain’s Sir Walter Raleigh. The former prime minister now advises the Kazakh ruler Nursultan Nazarbayev on his image in the West. Mr. Blair is handsomely paid to tutor his patron on how to be evasive about the crackdowns and the mine shootings that are facts of life in Kazakhstan.

    This is Britain’s growth business today: laundering oligarchs’ dirty billions, laundering their dirty reputations.

    It could be otherwise. Banking sanctions could turn off the financial pipelines through which corrupt officials channel Russian money. Visa restrictions could cut Kremlin ministers off from their mansions. The tax havens that rob the national budget of billions could be forced to be accountable. Britain has the power to bankrupt the Putin clique.

    But London has changed. And the Shard — the Qatari-owned, 72-floor skyscraper above the grotty Southwark riverside — is a symbol of that change.

    The Shard encapsulates the new hierarchy of the city. On the top floors, “ultra high net worth individuals” entertain escorts in luxury apartments. By day, on floors below, investment bankers trade incomprehensible derivatives.

    Come nightfall, the elevators are full of African cleaners, paid next to nothing and treated as nonexistent. The acres of glass windows are scrubbed by Polish laborers, who sleep four to a room in bedsit slums. And near the Shard are the immigrants from Lithuania and Romania, who broke their backs on construction sites, but are now destitute and whiling away their hours along the banks of the Thames.

    The Shard is London, a symbol of a city where oligarchs are celebrated and migrants are exploited but that pretends to be a multicultural utopia. Here, in their capital city, the English are no longer the ones calling the shots. They are hirelings.

  165. “Craig’s version of events may be true but it omits a key factor from Russia’s point of view – NATO.

    Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Kremlin has suspected that NATO (ie the US) was determined to move its forces ever closer to the Russian border in order to maximize its military and political leverage over Moscow.

    Who can blame them? The world is dominated by an imperial power to an extent hitherto unknown in human history, and that power has been intent on “containing” Russia and China – its only potential rivals – for the past 70 years. Would British “leaders” have reacted differently in the same circumstances, given that Obama was pressing Kiev to permit NATO military exercises in Ukraine?

    (By the way, it may be satisfying to compare Putin’s actions to those of Hitler in the 1930s, but it doesn’t get us anywhere. The US invaded Mexico in the 1840s and annexed much of what is now the American West, to the enduring chagrin of the Mexicans. Britain spent much of the past 200 years invading, occupying and despoiling places all over the world. By these standards, Putin has committed an unfortunate indiscretion).”

    Andy’s commentary above is a necessary corrective to Murray’s otherwise informative piece. In my view, Murray’s analysis didn’t give sufficient attention to what I regard as ‘the elephant in the room’ relating to overriding American geostrategic imperatives.

    It’s worth remembering that this crisis would not have happened had the United States not ingratiated itself in the sovereign affairs of the democratically elected government of Yanukovych in the first place.

    Victoria Nuland’s notorious “fuck the EU” phone call leaked last month, in which she can be heard laying down the shape of a post-Yanukovych government – much of which was then turned into reality when he was overthrown after the escalation of violence a couple of weeks later – has been missing from almost every mainstream analysis. One of the few exceptions was Seamus Milne’s excellent piece in the Guardian:


  166. John,

    Thanks for the video link. I have only watched 10 minutes but have bookmarked it and will watch it all soon.

    As a good site documenting the oligarth looting of Russia under Yeltsin (with the advice of Rubin and Harvard ‘economists’), have a look at the archives here:


  167. “I believe Russia’s incursion put a temporary hold on an emerging-market meltup, but that we are extremely close to a runaway move given several inter-market relationships that are screaming.”


    “Fed’s Plosser ‘very worried’ about QE consequences”


  168. Thread is apparently no longer accepting my posts.

  169. @Black Jelly,

    No need to speculate on Satanic movements (or even Jackie’s). Just read:


  170. BrianFujisan

    8 Mar, 2014 - 12:35 pm

    Sofia @ 9;31 Re Santions….

    Obama has just announced the same trick in

    Washington Sanctioning the World: US Government Threatens Sanctions against Venezuelan Officials


  171. BrianFujisan

    8 Mar, 2014 - 12:36 pm

    Sheeeesh.. Sanctions…..

  172. BrianFujisan

    8 Mar, 2014 - 12:40 pm


  173. “Russia Calls European Formulas for Ukraine Unacceptable”


  174. Trowbridge,

    Not that I know of – comments with too many links get blocked, could that be it?

    I have however deleted a second “Black Jelly” comment for referring to “yids” and banned his IP address, though doubtless he will pop up again.

  175. Someone, your link gives me a forbidden message. Might be important then.

  176. Clarence,

    The comment about the evolution of your thought was fascinating. I went through a similar process myself. Except I missed the bit where I had to believe that anybody who was anti-western, no matter how vicious, corrupt and dictatorial, was a hero. Where did you pick that up from?

  177. Not a hero, Craig. Just less bad and not entirely fixated on money. Might even mention the word ethics but that might be straying too far.

  178. Bye the bye, Craig, when you say that you went through a similar process yourself (ie as mine, which, as I stated, was entirely illuminated by the 9/11 lies and false press coverage), how can you then continue to support the US government conspiracy theory about a few arab hijackers with box cutters being able to evade the multibillion dollar security complex and then to destroy the twin towers with nuclear weapons*?

  179. John Goss, 8 Mar, 2014 – 12:49 pm

    If this is the link you are referring to ?


    It works OK for me!.

    It is strange that you have said the above!, I too have had “a forbidden message” on some sites.

  180. Someone, that’s the one. Often if you are in a certain location links are stopped. Like people in the US can watch the film about the UK’s assassination of Princess Diana, but we can’t in the UK. Are you in the US? Australia? It is governments I think that decide what can and cannot be watched in their countries. I expect it’s the same in Russia.

  181. Resident Dissident

    8 Mar, 2014 - 1:43 pm

    “In a way I think up to this crisis Putin was going about democratising Russia to make it compatible with the better-governed western-European countries in the right way.”

    Could we have some evidence to support this statement?

  182. Resident Dissident

    8 Mar, 2014 - 1:46 pm

    John Goss

    Since you, like myself, regard the privatisation of utilities, as a retrograde step you might find the linked a good place to start on Putin’s record of democratising Russia


  183. Res Des, I agree it’s immoral and produced all the oil-rich oligarchs that are funding the mafia in the Ukraine. I do agree it should be state-owned and prices should be kept down. Nobody owns our natural resources. But would you want it to return to the Soviet days?

  184. Resident Dissident

    8 Mar, 2014 - 1:56 pm

    John Goss

    I am not letting you go so easily you said “up to this crisis Putin was going about democratising Russia to make it compatible with the better-governed western-European countries in the right way”. Now please support or withdraw the statement.

  185. Resident Dissident

    8 Mar, 2014 - 2:08 pm

    I must say that I agree almost entirely with Craig’s statement – especially the part about Russia becoming part of Europe. Ukranians, Russians, Poles and other Slavs should not be separated from each other as their similarities are much greater than their differences – but also I do not want the Slavs to be split off from the rest of Europe – we have tried than and it doesn’t work. I do believe that the EU needs to be reformed if it is to become a true European Union but like Craig I do support the ideal – and I recognise that one of the main barriers to its achievement is the corrupt autocracy that currently operates in Moscow.

    I might also add that the attacks on Craig are in extremely poor taste and just illustrate my previous observation as to how cults usually direct their greatest hatred towards those who they consider to be apostates. I also note how certain individuals have crawled out from under their stones and we have a number of new visitors who are more than willing to accuse Craig and others as being in the pay of the Great Western Conspiracy or similar – all I can say to those individuals is that perhaps they are revealing themselves by the nature of their accusations.

  186. John Goss,8 Mar, 2014 – 1:37 pm

    This is strange!, I tried the link after your post “8 Mar, 2014 – 12:49 pm”, the link worked, I have just tried it again and it comes up “Forbidden”!.

  187. Someone I am intrigued to know what it says. A precis will do.

    Res Des @ 1:56 p.m. You cannot deny that democratic advances have taken place. This article contains some. However it is incidental to the blog and I am now on the next thread.


  188. I enjoyed your link Someone (George?) ‘London’s Laundry Business’ – interestingly my great-grandfather, John Benjamin was from Southwark; a ‘waterman’ who ferried ‘toffs’ returning to the City of London after they had ‘entertained’ themselves in the ‘red light’ areas of Southwark. The ‘entertainment’ was so good the City acquired control of Southwark appointing a bailiff and steward to ensure compliance else feel free to enjoy the ‘hospitality’ of Southwark prison.

  189. John Goss,

    Go to….”Russia Calls European Formulas for Ukraine Unacceptable” in the link below, click on, you still get “Forbidden”, weird!.


  190. “Someone I am intrigued to know what it says. A precis will do.”

    John Goss, I have another source!, here is the article.

    “Russia Calls European Formulas for Ukraine Unacceptable


    Moscow, Mar 7 (Prensa Latina) The Russian ambassador to the European Union (EU), Vladimir Chizhov, called the language in a document released for the EU Summit regarding the crisis in Ukraine, as “unacceptable and unjust.”

    Warning that Moscow would not be intimidated by the language and threats of sanctions, the diplomat pointed out that the formulas included in the statements of Herman Van Rompuy, president of the European Council, are inconsistent with the insistence that negotiations and dialogue are the only way to resolve the crisis.

    Chizhov stressed that just like at the meeting of EU foreign ministers, the Councilâ�Ös document advises the freezing of visas and the suspension of negotiations on a new accord regarding this issue as well as the preparations for the G-8 Summit in Sochi.

    The diplomat recalled that in regard to the visas and negotiations for an exemption between Russia and the EU, talks have been at a standstill for quite some time.

    He indicated that the only new element in the European position was the attempt to divide the agreement on association with Ukraine, the deferment of which provoked the disturbances that ended with the forced toppling of Ukraineâ�Ös elected president, Viktor Yanukovich.

    The ambassador explained that now, in order for the EU to show its support for the current illegitimate authorities in Ukraine, it had decided to sign the political part of the document with them.

    “I should like to point out that the total volume of the text is more than a thousand pages. The substantive section, dealing with the economy, should wait until after elections that would allow for the formation of a more legitimate Government, or at least, one that is more responsible,” concluded Chizhov.

    Russia insists that President Yanukovich, toppled by a violation of the agreement drafted between him, opposition leaders, and representatives from German, France and Poland on February 21, is the sole legitimate authority in Ukraine.

    The agreement provided for troop withdrawal as a way to de-escalate the conflict, the formation of a national coalition government, and constitutional reform, as well as elections to be held in September, instead of by year end.

    When Yanukovich complied with the first part, withdrawing troops, extremists swept in and overtook the Parliament and presidential offices, revoking his mandate, restoring the 2004 Constitution from the “Orange Revolution” and beginning a campaign to settle scores.

    Despite this illegal behavior, the U.S. and its European allies recognized the new rulers in Kiev as legitimate and even went so far as to invite the new designated Prime Minister, Arseny Yatseniuk, to the EU Summit in Brussels.

    sus/sa/tjg/jpm Modificado el ( viernes, 07 de marzo de 2014 )”


  191. Thanks Someone, I guessed it must be pretty damning for a Forbidden notice. No wonder! So in essence the Polish, German and French signatures on a document mean absolutely nothing. What happened to integrity? Even Craig would agree I’m sure that this is a gross flouting of international law.

    Vladimir Chizhov and the Russians are the only ones who have behaved honourably in this affair.

  192. Habby

    The whole point about Paul Craig Roberts is that he was one of yours, an insider, but now he’s telling the truth about how the whole thing has turned to madness, corruption and general turd.

    You’re still in denial.

    Meanwhile, here’s his latest:


  193. Herbie; Roberts is an apostate revealing himself by the nature of his accusations. :)

  194. Absolutely Ben. I was going to highlight that rather ironic comment of Res Diss, but it’s clearly way above his head.


  195. “Even Craig would agree I’m sure that this is a gross flouting of international law.”

    No, it isn’t illegal. It’s just nasty, sneaky, dirty, underhand and a damn good reason not to trust them and for Russia to not withdraw troops.

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