The Russian Menace Made Simple 190


There is currently a major propaganda blitz by arms and security industries to convince us was are in a “new cold war”, and therefore should be spending even more ludicrous sums of money on weapons of mass destruction. Here are a few simple facts.

a) Russia is not a great power. Its total GDP is about the same as Spain’s – and Spain is pretty knackered. Russia has even less economic clout as a basis for world domination than the UK.

b) Russia’s economy is not diversified. It is over-dependent on raw commodity production and export. Its distribution of wealth is even worse than ours, although the Tories are doing their best to catch up. We have a totally false popular impression of Russian wealth because a few oligarchs have most of the money – and export it straight to the West. Capital flight is a huge problem for the Russian economy.

c) Russia is no threat to the UK and never has been. Centuries of Russophobia are entirely baseless. The idea of a defensive posture against Russia is ludicrous as there is no threat. Churchill, incidentally, asked Truman to nuke Moscow. A nuclear attack would be the only realistic way Russia could attack the UK – and the only thing that could make that possible are the mad calls for cold war and more weapons currently being heard in the West. None of which is to say it would be militarily sensible to attack Russia, as history shows. But Russia’s aggressive potential is very limited indeed. It will not be long before Poland plus the Baltic states are economically stronger than Russia.

None of this is to say Russia cannot continue to bully those very weak states which neighbour it. I have no time for Putin’s aggressive nationalism. But his position is fundamentally weak and his powerbase very limited. Neither the left nor the right in the UK (and in this comments section) want to hear this. The right constantly exaggerate Russia as a threat to boost their political interests and military funding. The left want desperately to believe in Putin as a strong counter to the West, as indicated by the ludicrous analyses that the Syria conflict was all about Russia’s decrepit and worthless Black Sea Fleet.

How to handle relations with Russia is not quite as much of a conundrum as it sounds, as Putin’s vaulting ambition is severely limited by his economic constraints. He is feeling that severely now, and it is nothing to do with the token and pointless economic sanctions. Russia desperately needs economic and political form – but Putin’s hand is only strengthened by the bellicose nonsense which enables him to appeal to the powerful atavistic strand in modern Russian social culture. I remain of the view that internationally supervised, genuinely fair referenda in Eastern Ukraine should be the way forward. That should include a new and properly conducted referendum in the Crimea, including free campaigns. It should be made plain that there will be a fast track into the EU for the Ukraine at the end of that process, after the secession of any districts that wish to join Russia.


190 thoughts on “The Russian Menace Made Simple

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  • Ishmael

    Yes, in their haste to remove the cancer many have taken to the hope that Russia will blitz Nato forces and free them from tyranny. Government, is shit talk for people I don’t like. I want to pay less tax. The contempt shown by Cameron,Harper and Abbott to the Russian President has just changed the Russian public thinking. President Obama (U.S)declined to play the game to intimidate Russian president Vladimir Putin. To make the Russian people believe in themself.

    Does anyone really understand war? I simulate all the time a hostile military encounter between the United States (U.S) and Russia. To view the pictures one would require viewer discretion. They are both brilliant military powers with many great people serving them. It would be such a waste to use what we have now, to destroy how far we have come.

    A misjudgement by western intelligence agencies, or military intelligence could see them wrongly (keep it simple text) assess the military potential of Russia. If they get the defense projections wrong, or offensive capabilities wrong. If they are not aware of hidden weapons we may get a surprise.

    That’s why you need people like me to keep the balance.

  • CanSpeccy

    @ Paul Barbara

    Here is confirmation of part of the Donald Cook ‘Aegis’ story:

    Yes that bit is established. What is not confirmed is the interesting bit; namely, that the Russian plane blanked the Donald Cook’s radar screens thereby so demoralizing the crew that several dozen of them sought immediately to resign from the navy.

  • CanSpeccy

    Is Obama preparing to acknowledge Ukraine’s responsibility for the MH-17 shoot down?

    Here’s an analysis of Obama’s remarks at the G20 meeting:

    “What is striking is that in this speech, delivered in Australia where the MH17 tragedy is a very hot issue, Obama did not say that Russia shot MH17 down and did not say that the NAF shot MH17 down. He did not even say (as he has said in the past) that MH17 was shot down by a surface to air missile launched from NAF controlled territory. Rather what Obama is now saying is that Russia is responsible for MH17 being shot down because by its supposed “aggression” against Ukraine it has supposedly created the conditions that led to MH17 being shot down.

    “This actually leaves open the possibility (for the first time coming from Obama or from anyone in the US administration) that it might have been the Ukrainians who shot MH17 down.

    “With a character as slippery as Obama it is never possible to be completely sure but this looks to me frankly like a retreat to a fall back position. Certainly it is a long way from the categorical claims made by Obama and Kerry in the immediate aftermath of the tragedy.”

    “All this makes me wonder what Obama is been told in private by his intelligence chiefs as more information about the shoot down comes trickling in.

  • CanSpeccy

    The Anglo-Zionist Empire Menace made simple

    Putin say:

    “…we are very concerned about any possible ethnic cleansings and Ukraine ending up as a neo-Nazi state. What are we supposed to think if people are bearing swastikas on their sleeves? Or what about the SS emblems that we see on the helmets of some military units now fighting in eastern Ukraine? If it is a civilized state, where are the authorities looking? At least they could get rid of this uniform, they could make the nationalists remove these emblems”

  • CanSpeccy

    Poroshenko say (Re: Donbas):

    “Our old people will have pensions; theirs will not.
    Our children will go to school; theirs will hide in the cellar.
    That’s how we’ll win this war.”

    And Craig Murray thinks an internationally supervised referendum is required to find out what the people of Donbas think about being party of Zio-Nazi Ukraine.

    LOL

  • Paul Barbara

    @CanSpeccy: ‘What is not confirmed is the interesting bit; namely, that the Russian plane blanked the Donald Cook’s radar screens thereby so demoralizing the crew that several dozen of them sought immediately to resign from the navy.’
    I expect the crew have been threatened with dire consequences if they speak up about the ‘Black Screens’, like they were over Israel’s murderous attack on the USS Liberty in 1967, so we may never get confirmation of this aspect. The US Navy has not officially denied the claim, to my knowledge, which one would have expected if it was hogwash.

  • MJ

    “I expect the crew have been threatened with dire consequences if they speak up about the ‘Black Screens’…so we may never get confirmation of this aspect”

    In that case, what is the source for the original story? The US navy may not have denied the claim but since it derives from voltairenet and VT the navy may not be aware of it. Or care.

  • Paul Barbara

    @ CanSpeccy: ‘Is Obama preparing to acknowledge Ukraine’s responsibility for the MH-17 shoot down?’
    Here are a couple of sites of great interest re MH17:
    The Downing of Malaysia Flight 17: Sinister Pretext for War with Russia: http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article39590.htm
    and: ‘Malaysian Mainstream Media: MH17 was downed by a Military Aircraft, “Cannon Fire from Fighter Jet”:
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/malaysian-mainstream-media-mh17-was-downed-by-a-military-aircraft-cannon-fire-from-fighter-jet/5395134
    As well as eyewitnesses saying they saw a military jet near the MH17, ans watched as it broke up, NO ONE mentioned the very clear smoke trail a Buk leaves for 5 to 10 minutes, which would have been clearly visible for miles, IF it was there! Here is a video of Buk M1 trail: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LSXMhaFntrU

  • Paul Barbara

    @MJ: ‘What is the original source?’ Well, here it is on Russian Radio: ‘Russian Sukhoi Su -24 with the newest jamming complex paralyzed in the Black Sea the most modern American combat management system “Aegis” installed on the destroyer “USS Donald Cook”. Pavel Zolotarev, Deputy Director, Institute of USA and Canada, shares details about this version which is being actively discussed in the Russian media and by bloggers:
    http://indian.ruvr.ru/2014_04_21/Russian-Su-24-scores-off-against-the-American-USS-Donald-Cook-5786/

    If the US Navy is ‘unaware’ of this, they must be remarkably ill-informed. There are plenty of ‘independent’ (?!?!) bloggers claiming it’s lies (a bit like the ‘official’ stance on 9/11; the Government won’t answer questions, but leave ‘independent’ bloggers to pour scorn on Truthers).
    And the 27 crew who are said to have ‘resigned’, were not said to have resigned at sea, but when the ship docked in a Romanian port.

  • Kempe

    ” If the US Navy is ‘unaware’ of this, they must be remarkably ill-informed. ”

    They’re polite and coded way of saying “It’s bollocks”; like much else on this thread.

    Nobody just “resigns” from the US Navy or any other armed service, screens only black if they loose power and the Donald Cooks main radar produces 6 MW. A jamming signal would have to be more powerful, there’s no way a plane the size of a Su 24 could carry a transmitter and power supply that big. It would screw up it’s own systems if it could.

    Lastly if the Russians really did have this capability would they reveal it in peacetime and allow the US time to develop countermeasures?

    I’m sure none of this will affect your “thinking”, truthers don’t do logic.

  • N_

    It will not be long before Poland plus the Baltic states are economically stronger than Russia.

    The Russian economy is more than three times the size of those of Poland and the Baltic states added together.

    The officials of nuclear-armed NATO are getting restive about alleged military movements by nuclear-armed Russia. What I’d like to know is where are CND? Answer – they’re talking about the 2015 British general election.

    Let’s say NATO get involved in the war in the Ukraine. CND should be out on the streets!

    The coming winter may turn out to be a hard one in the Donbas.

  • CanSpeccy

    “It will not be long before Poland plus the Baltic states are economically stronger than Russia.”

    LOL

    That particular inanity had escaped me. No doubt soon we’ll be seeing reports of an Estonian anti-satellite weapon to compete with Russia’s.

    Or maybe a Polish space station to match Russia’s to be launched within three years.

    Or a Latvian 10,000 missile nuclear deterrent.

    This idiocy must be to calm the nerves of the idiots who’s lives are to be put on the line in a confrontation with the World’s other, and militarily probably better, super power.

  • YouKnowMyName

    @Kempe 7h41 18Nov14, considering both sides of the situation; I agree partly that the ‘Aegis’ has a backdoor and it was exploited reports is/are ‘bollocks’
    but as one can see from basic OSINT physics & the federation of american scientists who host the previously über-secret presidential asymmetric warfare policy document PPD-20 (Don’t worry, this extract is UNCLASSIFIED, so you don’t have to avert your sensitive eyes, nor call a supervisor for moral support) ..quote “(U)” ..

    military action involving the use of electromagnetic or directed energy to control the electromagnetic spectrum or to attack the enemy. Electronic warfare consists of three divisions: electronic attack, electronic protection, and electronic warfare support

    So that’s the US PRESIDENT authorising directed energy weapons, in the same document where he co-incidentally unleashes the sock-puppets of hell on all the world in the name of defeating terror?

    So using physics, directed energy weapons – from their very name need energy – lots of it – such as a ship, or a dedicated design of plane, i.e the Russian Su-24MP (Fencer-F) dedicated ELINT variant war porn here

    The fact that the USS Donald generated six megawatts doesn’t mean that the opponent needs to generate MORE than this to attack, the 6MW is needed because due to physics – the reflected radar power returned from a target is related to the cubic ratio of the distance, that’s not squared or raised to the power 3, but raised to the power 4, in other words the Aegis sends a big bang of radio-waves, but then listens for a tiny echo. [Skolnik: ‘inverse cubic law’]

    Should the Su-24MP attack, then the attack radio power it sends is only attenuated by ‘the inverse square law’ (there are public mentions of using laser induced channels to deliver MORE POWER than the laws of physics allow – i.e shine a powerful laser, fry & toast the air/atmosphere a bit, then send your radio attack pulse – and you have hit your target, in this case, the Aegis destroyer with better than inverse square power) – guess how much power we’re actually talking about? OK, you give up? – hint it’s a TERAWATT of peak pulse energy on target! (for a very short period of time)

    from wikipedia

    The terawatt is equal to one trillion (10^12) watts. (1,000,000,000,000W) The total power used by humans worldwide (about 16 TW in 2006) is commonly measured in this unit. The most powerful lasers from the mid-1960s to the mid-1990s produced power in terawatts, but only for nanosecond time frames.

    So that’s what the Aegis was hit by, a short energy pulse approaching power levels of one tenth of the total annual power used by humans worldwide (2014 levels) which through the physics method of “front door coupling” into the Aegis multiple radar antenna systems – would lead to problems. The effects on the Donald Cook, as your asymmetric warfare colleagues can brief you, are to – in increasing levels of susceptibility – deny, disrupt, degrade, destroy their systems. It is for the USN to know, and only them, up to what level their Aegis Combat System was degraded by the pulse attack. Physics does not tell us this, nor comment on the subsequent staff motivation HR issues

    The various wacky blogs (“bollocks”) ascribe the Su-24MP attack to ‘magic’ devices, but it could be a simple Axial Vircator vacuum-tube like this 2009 description (in pdf)

    Aegis shouldn’t be completely-blind even after an EMP attack, surely they have a fully screened “spare” unjammable random-monopulse AA radar?, though of course that would do f*ck-all against the Russian Х-31 anti-ship air-launched Mach 3.5 cruise missile. Oops, another warship please!

    The question remains however, with US Presidential Policy Directive twenty authorising UKUSA asymmetric weapons including directed energy against the opponent, why are we surprised when a particularly obstinate and p*ssed-off opponent starts using the same weapons against us?

  • CanSpeccy

    Don’t know nuthin’ about radar, but simple physics tells ya that the power of the Donald Cook’s radar has nothing to do with the power required of an effective jamming device, as YKMN points out.

    Apparently, though, the incident shook up the US Navy enough to prompt a Pentagon condemnation, elaborated by a retired Admiral, the gist of which was:

    We sent the Donald Cook to the Black Sea to intimidate the Russkies, then the bastards intimidated us, which was totally unprofessional and very dangerous.

    LOL

  • CanSpeccy

    Anyhow, the Aegis system seems to be something of a hyperexpensive joke.

    It’s an anti-missile system that began development in the 80’s. It’s been fired a grand total of 35 times, beginning in 1997 (a failure) with a success rate of about 82%.

    So what if the enemy, could be the Russkies, but also Iran, China, India, probably a bunch of others, let lose 35 supersonic sunburn anti-ship missiles at the same target all at once? Glug, glug, glug, obviously.

    If you watch the video of an anti-missile test, you get the impression that the American military believe they’re the living incarnation of Star-Trek, notwithstanding their unbroken record of defeat by Third World nations (Well not counting Grenada: they whumped those guys.)

  • CanSpeccy

    And while the US was moaning about Russia’s unprofessional conduct in flying an unarmed plane over a US warship in international waters, they were themselves in breach of the Montreux convention. As stated by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov:

    “According to the treaty, warships from non-Black Sea states can only stay in the basin for up to 21 days consecutively. USS Taylor spent 11 more than that in the region in February and March.”

    Humbug-R-US.

  • Paul Barbara

    @ Kempe: ‘I’m sure none of this will affect your “thinking”, truthers don’t do logic.’ You gotta be joking! It’s the Morons who accept Government and MSM reports without question who ‘don’t do logic’. As Einstein said: ‘To condemn without investigation is the height of ignorance’. Dismissing someone’s point of view by simply calling them ‘Truthers’ or ‘Conspiracy Theorists’ fits that description.

  • Kempe

    “So that’s what the Aegis was hit by, a short energy pulse approaching power levels of one tenth of the total annual power used by humans worldwide (2014 levels) which through the physics method of “front door coupling” into the Aegis multiple radar antenna systems – would lead to problems.”

    Speculation coupled with sub-Dr Who techobabble. Come back with some facts.

  • Kempe

    “It’s the Morons who accept Government and MSM reports without question who ‘don’t do logic’.”

    So it’s logical to believe that governments have at their disposal massive numbers of totally reliable “crisis actors” to stand in whenever a false flag operation is needed? Logical to believe that the WTC was destroyed by impossible mini-nukes but at the same time a raygun fired from outer space and that every witness was a government employee and the ‘planes added on afterwards using CGI; or were they cruise missiles with holograms?

    These and a dozen or more other daft schemes and hoaxes which anybody with more than two brain cells can work out to be impossible yet the naive and the gullible gobble them up and think themselves clever for doing so!

    Do excuse the rest of us if we have a good laugh.

  • CanSpeccy

    Crisis actors! WTF?

    This is not a general debunk the conspiracy theorists thread is it?

    Mini nukes at the WTC, rayguns!

    Do try to keep on topic.

    Here we’re debunking Craig’s bollocks on Russia.

  • CanSpeccy

    Speaking of Craig Murray’s bollocks on Russia, let’s take another look at it:

    I have no time for Putin’s aggressive nationalism.

    Referring to what exactly? Russia’s objection to being partitioned into a dozen or so oligarch-controlled trivialities dominated by the US of Aggression?

    But his position is fundamentally weak and his powerbase very limited.

    His popular support in Russia as a percentage of the population being about double Obama’s support in the US and about 50 times Cameron’s support in the UK.

    The left want desperately to believe in Putin as a strong counter to the West, as indicated by the ludicrous analyses that the Syria conflict was all about Russia’s decrepit and worthless Black Sea Fleet.

    it’s not the Black Sea fleet of 44 ships (how many ships will the Scotch Navy have?) that counts but the threat to supply Syria with the S-300 anti-aircraft missiles that prevented the US from bombing Assad into submission.

    Putin’s vaulting ambition is severely limited by his economic constraints.

    Wait a minute. What is Putin ambition supposed to be vaulting at?

    He’s keeping alive the Assad regime in Syria with which Russia is allied, and which provides Russia with a naval base in the Mediterranean, but there’s nothing very vaulting about that. It’s just an attempt to maintain the status quo against American vaulting ambition to rule the world.

    Oh, and Putin doesn’t seem to like Nazis in his back yard, which is understandable since those bastards killed ten or twenty million Russkies the last time they got uppity.

    As for Putin’s ambition being “severely limited by his economic constraints,” Putin has the kind of economic constraints Americans are ready to die for, like a huge exportable energy supply, while America is facking the hell out of the place and still importing around five million barrels of oil a day.

    The claim that Poland and the Baltic states will soon equal Russia in GDP is a ridiculous lie as someone already pointed out. In fact Poland has a GDP per capita is slightly lower than Russia and the majority of Poles, according to a Pew Research Poll, would be happier to be back in the old Soviet Union than serving as a cheap labor resource for Germany industry.

    So, let’s have no more rubbish about crisis actors and mini-nukes, thank you.

  • Kempe

    ” let’s have no more rubbish about crisis actors and mini-nukes, ”

    Couldn’t agree more but I don’t supose it’ll be long before somebody around here brings them up again.

    My recollection is that it was lack of a political consensus that saved Assad’s men from NATO bombing. Fear of ground to air missiles certainly didn’t disuade the Americans from sending lumbering cargo planes across Syria to drop supplies to the rebels.

    Most of the Black Sea fleet consists of small minesweepers and coastal defence craft with limited range and capability some of which entered service in the 1960’s. There are only a handful of “blue water” ships and how many could be deployed at one time is open to debate.

    I guess the reference to Nazis is yet another stupid dig at Ukraine. In the last election far-right parties gained less than 2% of the parliamentary seats and are far outnumbered by leftwingers (22%). Both Russia and the EU expressed satisfaction at the way the election was conducted. However I suppose it’s necessary to keep up the myth that the Ukrainian government is both Nazi and illegal to justify Putin’s continued interference.

  • CanSpeccy

    @Kempe

    ” let’s have no more rubbish about crisis actors and mini-nukes, ”

    Couldn’t agree more but I don’t supose it’ll be long before somebody around here brings them up again.

    It was you who introduced both topics.

    Fear of ground to air missiles certainly didn’t disuade the Americans from sending lumbering cargo planes across Syria to drop supplies to the rebels.

    Lack of fear of the S300 anti-aircraft missiles was due to the absence of S300 anti-aircraft missiles. The fear that Russia would introduce S300 anti-aircraft missiles was the reason US-NATO refrained from a no-fly (aka bomb the shit out of ’em) campaign in Syria).

    Most of the Black Sea fleet consists of small minesweepers and coastal defence craft with limited range and capability …

    Yeah, and any rust bucket can carry a supersonic cruise missile. Forty-six Russian rust buckets in the Black Sea would pretty certainly put paid to any US naval flotilla. Then there’d be shore-based missile batteries and air-launched missiles.

    Any US naval force intent on ruling the Black Sea could be in for a surprise.

    You’re a tiresome troll. I’m outa here.

    I guess the reference to Nazis is yet another stupid dig at Ukraine.

    Bollocks. The Ukraine Government sent punitive forces (i.e., rape and murder batallions) to East Ukraine to kill “sub-humans”, a term reportedly used by both President Porky and PM Arse Yats. And then there’s Presidential candidate Tymoshenko calling for genocide of six million Russians, or was it eight million.

    Anyhow, enough of this. I’m outa here.

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