Freedom of Speech and Graham Phillips 185

The imposition of sanctions against British citizen and journalist Graham Phillips is an appalling violation of freedom of speech – which to have meaning must mean freedom to say things which disagree with the government, the media and/or majority public opinion.

Phillips has for almost a decade published and broadcast from Ukraine material which is openly supportive of the pro-Russian section of the Ukrainian population. He has operated from first Kyiv, then Odessa, then the Donbass. Phillips was sceptical of the Maidan protests and the popular revolution narrative. He subsequently for years covered much that the Western elites do not wish people to know – the shelling of civilian areas held by Russian separatists, the Nazi links of some Ukrainian military and politicians, the discrimination against Russian speakers and banning of Russian media and education.

All that is one side of the story in Ukraine, and the side that western governments and media are extremely keen you no longer can see. The information Phillips was providing was not in general untrue. The facts were selective and the interpretation partial, but that is also absolutely true of the western propaganda to which we are continually subjected.

In some incidents in the current war, it is impossible at a distance to be certain who was responsible for various acts. I see no reason in general to believe the BBC over Graham Phillips, or Graham Phillips over the BBC. It is good to have different sources.

Phillips has been criticised for broadcasting an interview with British prisoner Aiden Aslin, held by Russian separatist forces. The criticism is broadly correct. As I pointed out on twitter in the early days of this war, it is contrary to the Geneva Convention to make public display of prisoners.

This law was broken repeatedly by the Ukrainian side, with blanket footage of Russian soldiers phoning their mothers. Not one (except me) of those complaining about the Aslin interview complained about those. There are mitigating factors for Phillips – the interview was apparently Aslin’s initiative and he appeared pleased to give it. It was however still wrong. It is a good law – you never know what coercion or violence is applied to POW’s off-screen.

Personally there is much in Phillips’ line on Ukraine that I do not agree with. It is plain to me that broadly, the majority of the people of Ukraine genuinely wished in 2014 to move towards the EU rather than Russia, and dramatic efforts by Putin to reverse that process backfired.

But because I disagree does not mean Phillips should not be allowed to put across his view. It is also plain to me that Phillips was correct that the rights of the pro-Russian minority have indeed been trampled by ultra-nationalist Ukrainian forces, and Ukraine is a desperately corrupt and dysfunctional country.

The current proxy war is a disaster. It is not only killing tens of thousands in Ukraine, it is producing economic consequences that seriously damage the poor worldwide. The delight of politicians, the military and the arms industry is evident – and that is true of both Russia and the West. When wars happen, the bad people on all sides profit from them. The people suffer.

So I do not agree with Phillips’ cheerleading for the Russian “side” in this disastrous war. The answer to war is not to take a side but peace, and that is desperately needed.

The war will end with Ukraine ceding Crimea to Russia and perhaps more territory. Had Zelensky negotiated before the war started, Crimea plus the Minsk Agreements would have been enough. The Ukrainian negotiating position radically worsens daily. NATO is cheerfully sending Ukraine to disaster. The Russian invasion was illegal; the response now is immoral. The terms of the eventual settlement are obvious. Let it be reached now, without more pointless death.

But for Phillips, a British citizen, to be severely legally punished for publishing opinions about a war in which his own state is not a party – nor, it is important to state, in formal alliance with any party – is entirely without precedent. If we accept that Phillips supports the Russian side in the war, why should it be illegal to do that? How does this principle play out? Am I to be sanctioned for supporting the Palestinians? What about those who uphold the rights of the Houthis against the Saudi death grip?

What about american journalists who opposed the Vietnam War? Or the British journalists who stood up against the attack on Egypt in the Suez Crisis? What of campaigners against the Iraq War? When you think it through, the implications of this action against Phillips are simply appalling.

The sanctions against Phillips are serious. A British citizen has had his property seized by the state, his assets and bank accounts frozen, his ability to earn a living crashed by the blocking of funding mechanisms. All this for publishing opinions on a foreign war contrary to those of the British government.

This is a truly frightening attack on freedom of speech, whether or not you agree with Phillips’ views.


Forgive me for pointing out that my ability to provide this coverage is entirely dependent on your kind voluntary subscriptions which keep this blog going. This post is free for anybody to reproduce or republish, including in translation. You are still very welcome to read without subscribing.

Unlike our adversaries including the Integrity Initiative, the 77th Brigade, Bellingcat, the Atlantic Council and hundreds of other warmongering propaganda operations, this blog has no source of state, corporate or institutional finance whatsoever. It runs entirely on voluntary subscriptions from its readers – many of whom do not necessarily agree with the every article, but welcome the alternative voice, insider information and debate.

Subscriptions to keep this blog going are gratefully received.

Choose subscription amount from dropdown box:

Recurring Donations


Paypal address for one-off donations: [email protected]

Alternatively by bank transfer or standing order:

Account name
Account number 3 2 1 5 0 9 6 2
Sort code 6 0 – 4 0 – 0 5
IBAN GB98NWBK60400532150962
Bank address Natwest, PO Box 414, 38 Strand, London, WC2H 5JB

Bitcoin: bc1q3sdm60rshynxtvfnkhhqjn83vk3e3nyw78cjx9
Ethereum/ERC-20: 0x764a6054783e86C321Cb8208442477d24834861a

Subscriptions are still preferred to donations as I can’t run the blog without some certainty of future income, but I understand why some people prefer not to commit to that.

Allowed HTML - you can use: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

185 thoughts on “Freedom of Speech and Graham Phillips

1 2
      • Sea

        “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it”

        Except that the disapproving with Graham Philips doesn’t make any sense in current reality. The guy is doing proper journalism work, contrary to corporate “medias”.

    • RE

      “A Voltairean principle.”

      Or two.

      “To find out who rules over you, simply find out who (or what) you are not allowed to criticise.”

  • Greg Park

    We can rely on Liz Truss, Sir Keir Starmer and the Integrity Initiative commentariat to assure us what’s actually happening in Donbass. No need for eyewitnesses reporting from the frontline.

  • Tatyana

    The comment on the previous page by El Dee

    “I am genuinely shocked that someone reporting from the region is being silenced by our government.”

    I’d like to bring some info, call me a Putin’s propagandist if you like, it’s just some facts reported, anyone interested may check them.

    Have you heard about the grain deal signed recently between Russia, Ukraine, Turkey and the UN? Ukrainian crops to be shipped out of the country, as the poorest countries may face famine without it.
    The path for Ukraine to join the EU involved some unpopular measures, like raising taxes, fees, cost if commodities etc.
    Zelensky approved the law allowing to sell agricultural lands to foreigners – one of the conditions required to join the EU. That law was heavily objected by the opposition, and debated widely, but nonetheless all the opposition voices were suppressed and the law adopted.

    Australian National Review says “Three Large American Multinationals Bought 17 Million Hectares of Ukrainian Agricultural Land”

    “…These are Cargill, Dupont and Monsanto (which is officially German-Australian but with American capital). Five percent of Ukrainian agricultural land was subsequently purchased by the Chinese state. For comparison, the whole of Italy has 16.7 million hectares of agricultural land.

    In short, three American companies bought more useful agricultural land in Ukraine than the whole of Italy.

    Among the main shareholders of these three companies are Vanguard, Blackrock, Blackstone…”

    The latest Russian news reported on the ships finally leaving Ukrainian seaports, loaded with corn. But, you always have some ‘buts’ when you learn more detail. The ships departure from Ukraine, then arrive to Turkey, and then go to the UK and Ireland. Google for Polarnet ship, 5 ships caravan departure on August 5. And, on top of that, the poorest countries ‘facing famine without Ukrainian crops’ – Lebanon cancelled the purchase. And, the top of the top, the cargo is not edible corn, but forage for cattle.

    • Andy

      Yet more dots joined methinks. The real power running the world buying up the bread basket of the world with freshly printed dollars probably labelled ‘Aid to Ukraine’.

  • Tatyana

    For Tom Welsh
    I share Mr.Murray’s point on “The answer to war is not to take a side but peace”, and I announced this point in the very beginning of the conflict. This point is, I believe, is the point expressed in Mr. Roger Waters’ interview, when he said Mr. Biden is a war criminal, because he encourages military action instead of pushing for negotiations. This point is the point of Chinese state. And, I hope, the point of the UN.

    It mostly is about personal moral choice. It means I refuse to take a side in the conflict, I refuse to ‘become a soldier’, but I’m ready to put effort into a diplomatic, non-military, non-violent solution.

    Btw, some news on the Russian side said ICC cannot qualify Russia’s action as an agression. This was said by Dmitry Kuleba, the head of Ukrainian foreign office. The news was reported by RIA, and I wish someone could check with the western sources what has actually happened. Did Ukraine turn to ICC? Did ICC really fail to qualify the war as an aggression?

    • Goose

      Roger Waters has taken quite a bit of criticism for that interview, not because anything he said was especially controversial, but more because such views are so seldom expressed these days in western media. Being a musician/performer promoting his concert, he slipped through the usual filter or net that prevents viewer exposure to inconvenient, differing or controversial opinion.

      There are far better analysts of the situation than Waters of course, he’d probably be the first to admit that. But they simply wouldn’t be invited on such news shows to speak. People who can explain things in context of 2013-14s events, Minsk’s lost opportunity, and how this proxy war is very much engineered and a continuation of hostilities from where President Obama’s administration left things with Russia/ Putin. Putin who frustrated US-led Syrian regime change plans. Hostilities taken up once again under Biden. Even the same administration personnel are back in charge eg. Nuland.

      The US is clearly prepared to use Ukraine as a battering ram on Russia’s front door to settle old scores, Zelensky had willingly created an anti-Russia state. Even though it’s self-evident that the war’s continuation is neither in Russia’s or Ukraine’s interests, nor the interests of a potentially winter ‘energy stricken’ Europe, yet it continues. We are seeing reported missile attacks deep into Crimea, reported in the last few days, things could escalate very quickly. The US, advising Ukraine at all levels, must surely know the dangers here too.

      You’d like to believe there is no way our govt (UK) and the US want a catastrophic nuclear war, but I’m honestly not so sure they don’t? The only thing preventing Russia forcing a Ukrainian unconditional surrender, via the use of such weapons, may be the fear of losing the likes of China, India, Brazil and other nations, that remain either fairly neutral or passively supportive, it’s the fear of being truly completely isolated in the world, at the UN etc. This is an insanely dangerous game Zelensky and the US are playing, testing Russia’s tolerance for military losses, losses due purely to NATO assistance in the form of advanced missile systems, targeting assistance via US/NATO military satellites and advanced radar. If it ends catastrophically, those in the west who believed pumping in more advanced weaponry to prolong this conflict is/was the right thing to do, won’t be able to escape their role and responsibilities. Russia is a nuclear-armed state, do they think they can claim they didn’t know the risks?

      • Courtenay Francis Raymond Barnett


        ” You’d like to believe there is no way our govt (UK) and the US want a catastrophic nuclear war, but I’m honestly not so sure they don’t?”

        I agree.

      • Blissex

        «the US want a catastrophic nuclear war, but I’m honestly not so sure they don’t? The only thing preventing Russia forcing a Ukrainian unconditional surrender, via the use of such weapons»

        That the “orcs” may in desperation nuclear-bomb Kiev is just “Washington Consensus” propaganda, it goes entirely against the RF policy of minimizing damage to Ukraine and Ukrainians, which they expect to govern in the future.

        What is everybody is waiting for is winter: the Ukrainian government is deeply bankrupt, and no longer has sufficient supplies or stocks of fuels and electricity for the civilian population (or for the military), and in any case the civilian population no longer has the money to pay for fuel or electricity

        Also supplies from Poland, Hungary, Romania are too far from most areas of central Ukraine for them to be cheap or reliable, and soon Ukrainian fascist gangs would “confiscate” them, and the Ukrainian government does not have the fuel or capacity to import enough.

        That’s also why the Ukrainian fascist government is demanding that NATO troops attack and occupy the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant and are bombing it (when the wind goes towards the Donbas or Crimea) to create an emergency to “justify” a NATO intervention.

        The Ukrainian fascist government cut off many years ago electricity, fuel and water supplies to the Donbas and Crimea to cause mass civilian deaths (or mass emigration) in those areas to ethnically cleanse them, now that the RF and thje LDR/DPR are doing it to the Ukrainian fascists they are panicking, because during the winter their regime of terror and looting may end.

  • David W Ferguson

    One of the most chilling aspects of this story is that Phillips has had these draconian sanctions placed on him simply for maintaining consistency in continuing to provide a version of events which, until 2022, was identical to the story the massed ranks of the Western MSM were telling us. There are certainly hundreds of hours of footage (and hundreds of published articles) like this stuff from the BBC in 2018:

    • tom welsh

      We have always been at war with Russia.
      Ukraine has always been a model democracy.
      Graham Phillips has always been an enemy of humankind.

    • Blissex

      «One of the most chilling aspects of this story is that Phillips has had these draconian sanctions placed on him simply for maintaining consistency in continuing to provide a version of events which, until 2022, was identical to the story the massed ranks of the Western MSM were telling us.»

      That was his stupid choice to believe in “freedom of press”: it is never that secure, and disappears when (even proxy) war starts, and “home front morale” becomes official policy. The MSM understood that well.

      There is a saying somewhere else: “The nail that sticks out will be hammered”, and he made himself that nail.

  • Giyane

    ‘ You never know what coercion or violence is applied to POWs off screen.’

    The financial sanctioning of a journalist tells us that we now have direct rule from Washington, maybe some kind of twisted revenge for generations of durect rule by Britain of Ireland, including the present.

    Freedom of speech is a 400 year old unequal law over our savage race which permits truth to be told while government is empowered to do the opposite, e.g. British troops helping terrorists in Libya, Syria and now Ukraine.

    Under direct US rule our clutch of headless chicken Prime Ministers , who for the last 12 years have supported Nazism in Ukraine, have definitely not represented the British people. For our leaders not to represent us is outrageous and sanctions should be placed on our leaders for slavishly serving the US , not us.

    • Tatyana

      The problem is that they do not see Nazism there. The focus of attention in the state narrative shifts to the desire for freedom, and Nazi ideology and methods are justified as excusable in order to achieve the goal. Of course, it is impossible to deceive everyone all the time, so that is why many too shocking obvious evidence is hushed up and voices from “the other side” are silenced. Mr. Phillips was the victim of this “Ukraine Support Operation”.

      This way of responding to manifestations of Nazism is perceived by neo-Nazis as support, as encouragement, not only for their goals, but also for their ideology in general.
      Look at this screenshot. I left the channel’s name visible in the browser address line, for everyone to check with their own eyes.

      I think you recognize a stylized swastika. I know some here may argue it is an old Indian symbol 🙂
      Well, the title of the channel is “Epics of the IV Reich”, subtitle is “herald of far-right youth”, and here is a message from there:

      “… The elite of the Ukrainian army will be demonstratively ‘tried’ for the things that Russian artillery and aviation did. It is clear that this has nothing to do with justice and international law.
      The neo-Bolsheviks will portray all of this as “Nuremberg 2.0″. Like, look, a mass trial of neo-Nazis who ate Russian-speaking babies and showed insulting gestures to veterans on May 9th. As at the Nuremberg Trial*, the mob again judges the elite. Once again subhuman darkness will try to trample down the impulse of spirit and character. I do not entertain myself with illusions.”

      * Actually they use Russian word судилище, a word with a contempt expressing suffix, which may be translated as ‘fake trial’ or ‘staged trial’*

      With all my efforts to respect all points of view, I refuse to see this conflict as ‘elites’ vs ‘mob’ or even vs ‘subhumans’. But, it may be OK with the Western governments, after all, we know nazism came from the West.

        • Tatyana

          So, do you imply that the Isle of Man sponsors “Epics of the IV Reich, herald of the far-right youth” in Ukraine? Or, in which way it may be connected with the channel?

        • Bayard

          Nice try, but no cigar. The figure Tatyana shows is indeed a triskelion, as is the symbol on the Isle of Man flag. However to say the two are the same is like maintaining that the swastika is the same as the symbol found in every Christian church, since they are both crosses.

          • Tatyana

            There’s a good joke:
            Scientists in our time revive Stalin. He comes to the Kremlin and there he is asked a question:
            – Iosif Vissarionovich, you see the state of affairs in modern Russia. What would you advise to do, from your experience?
            – I have two pieces of advice: 1. Shoot the government. 2. Paint the walls of the Kremlin green.
            – But why green?
            – You see, I knew that on the first point we have no disagreement.

            so with PR’s Margarine, no objections on the remaining points, except for the symbol.

  • Ian Gibson

    I find it curious that Craig opines that ‘the majority of Ukraine wanted to move towards the EU’, and it was actions by Putin to counter that which backfired, with the implication that this was the cause of the conflict. Some things are indisputable: the election of 2010, considered by official observers to have been generally free and fair, elected an administration which favoured closer ties with Russia. If popular sentiment had changed so decisively (and I’m less convinced of that,) the legitimate route to change would have been by the ballot box – or even, in extremis, by impeachment (for which the Ukrainian constitution made provision.) The Maidan coup was illegal, illicit, and bloody, and undoubtedly backed (and probably instigated) by the US. Without that context, the question of whether Russia’s SMO is illegal cannot be properly judged. Indeed, I find this argument by an international Canadian lawyer, Christopher Black, quite persuasive in arguing that Russia’s operation is in fact compliant with the UN Charter and international law:

      • Tatyana

        Voted out? What a mendacious description of events!
        In fact, the protesters in the square gave him an ultimatum to resign before 10 a.m. next day. But already at night they captured the government quarter and Yanukovych fled. In the morning, Parliament announced his removal.
        If you see this as something like a peaceful voting out, then you are blind.

      • D

        Pears – he made a lot of concessions, I recall he stood the police down, I’ve never read it told like how you tell it that – he wasn’t impeached, he didn’t resign, there wasn’t an election and he didn’t die …

        • Tatyana

          Yes, he stood the police down, the police were withdrawn from the place.

          The Agreement on the Settlement of the Political Crisis in Ukraine is a document signed on February 21, 2014 by the President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych and the leaders of the parliamentary opposition through the mediation of representatives of the European Union. The signing of the Agreement was intended to stop the mass bloodshed in Kyiv and put an end to the acute political crisis that began in November 2013 in connection with the decision of the Ukrainian authorities to suspend the process of signing the Association Agreement with the European Union.
          An agreement on settling the political crisis was signed by Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and opposition leaders Vitaliy Klitschko (UDAR party), Arseniy Yatsenyuk (Batkivshchyna VO) and Oleg Tyagnibok (Svoboda VO). The signing was witnessed by the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Germany and Poland – Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Radoslav Sikorsky and the head of the Department of Continental Europe of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the French Republic Éric Fournier. Special Representative of the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Lukin, who also participated in the talks, refused to put his signature on the document.

          The agreement provided for an immediate return to the 2004 Constitution, that is, to a parliamentary-presidential form of government, the formation of a “government of national trust”, constitutional reform and early presidential elections by the end of 2014. It also provided for the withdrawal of law enforcement forces from the center of Kyiv, the cessation of violence and the surrender of weapons by the opposition.
          *Vladimir Lukin, explaining his position, said that “Moscow decided not to sign these agreements for a very good reason, in fact, the situation with who is the subject of this agreement is not very clear”, the Agreement “does not show the forces and persons who should implement it”

          The night after the agreement was signed, on Feb. 22 the protesters stormed the government quarters and Yanukovich fled.

          • Tatyana

            Turchinov became a deputy-president, Feb 23. In March he signed a decree dismissing the Higher Council of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea. In April he signed a legal act on “anti-terror operation in Donbass”. In May pro-Russian protesters were burnt alive in Odessa.
            Мерзкая рожа. Heartily welcomed by another Мерзкая рожа Geoffrey Pyatt.

    • Blissex

      «If popular sentiment had changed so decisively (and I’m less convinced of that,)»

      Usually even with massive funding (Nuland’s billions) the ruthenian fascist side only managed to get 45-48% of the vote, but at that point voting had become impossible in the Donbas, where 5-10% of voters lived, and most were anti-ruthenian fascist, so having eliminated them elections have regularly returned a small margin for the ruthenian fascist side, also because non-fascist parties have been persecuted or suppressed.

  • Tatyana

    Tom Welsh,
    re: your comment

    this part

    “… everything that is fundamentally wrong about Mr Murray’s position… “The answer to war is not to take a side but peace” … How does he propose that civilised people should deal with angry, violent, apparently deranged enemies who have declared their desire to exterminate them?…”

    You both are right, Mr. Murray and yourself.
    Look, you speak for the side of the conflict. When Mr. Murray speaks for an outside observer.
    Abstractly, you’re right about countering violence with violence – a position of a party in the conflict. Mr. Murray is right choosing peace, instead of joining the conflict – a position of an observer.
    Like you walk down the street and see 2 men fighting. You’d choose to stop the violence instead of joining the fight. It is normal. You’d choose to ask for help from passers-by, instead of asking them to bring rifles, wouldn’t you? And, I expect you’d be very angry with the bystanders cheering either side.

    • Pears Morgaine

      What to do if you see a woman being raped in her own home by a much bigger and more powerful man? Would you take an even handed approach then? Persuade the woman to let the man move into her living room if he promises to leave her alone?

      • Tatyana

        Like DNR and LNR being raped by Kiev? I suggest doing what Russia did – call the police and neighbours for help, like inviting OSCE and signing the Minsk agreement.

        • Goose

          All we hear from our UK politicians is more weapons, more firepower and simplistic cries of …Sláva Ukrayíni! There is very little by way of aims/objectives and whether there is functional Ukrainian state to be had under all the rubble.

          Does Zelensky still see federalism as being the future for his viable, united Ukraine as envisaged in Minsk? No doubt as before, the influential hard men – those ultra nationalists – wouldn’t allow him to countenance that, they’d see it as a sop to Russia. The war may have removed the pressure on Kyiv to implement the Minsk agreements, but the underlying sectarian rifts preventing a united Ukraine before, remain, and have if anything worsened.

          How on earth would they reintegrate large parts of the East when they couldn’t manage that pre-Russian invasion? All western policy seems to be based on an illusion; that of a mythical happy, united Ukraine, in which Crimea & East could be easily reintegrated, i.e., a Ukraine that didn’t exist before the war and wouldn’t exist if it ended tomorrow, even if every Russian soldier left. Zelensky is presented as some sort of genius in the West, a Vogue cover-fronting ‘comedian turned ace politician.’ But in reality he isn’t some strategic genius, he’s indebting his country to the US to the tune of tens of billions; has seen millions of citizens leave Ukraine,towns, cities , infrastructure and GDP destroyed and could yet meet a fiery end himself.

          He’s just digging his country into a deeper hole a far as I can tell, facing if not imminent then longer term disaster. The fact those around him are so paranoid now, prosecuting people previously seen as close to the regime, including the head of the security services, for treason, bodes ill for what they’d do if they ever recaptured the East LPR, DPR and Crimea.

        • tom welsh

          But the OSCE have always worked for Kiev and Washington. And Mr Poroshenko has just told the whole world that he signed both Minsk agreements without the slightest intention of implementing them – purely to gain some years to strengthen and fortify the Ukrainian army’s positions in Donbass.

          Neither appealing to OSCE nor getting the Minsk agreements signed did the slightest good. The whole point, dear Tatyana, is that there are no “police” in quarrels between peoples and states.

          Whether you like it or not, determined violence cannot be stopped except by opposing violence. One can stand to the side and wash one’s hands, but that can only salve the bystander’s conscience; it doesn’t help those who are being attacked.

          In 1941, should Stalin and the Soviet government have appealed for peace and asked the Nazis to sign a treaty? They had already signed a Non-Aggression Pact, which they then ignored.

          • Tatyana

            Tom, I see your point. I mean, inviting OSCE and arranging Minsk agreements Russia acted in good faith. One cannot know beforehand if a policeman is corrupt, it only gets clear in a certain circumstances.
            When there was no hope left for peaceful solution, only then Russia recognised DNR and LNR and acted under the treaty of mutual defense.
            When I say I wish the conflict was solved by diplomacy I understand it takes 2 to tango. If we want to negotiate, so must be the opposite side’s will for negotiations either.

          • Tatyana

            Also, I don’t think Mr.Murray is a pacifist. Once he described himself ‘radical’, and another time in one of his blogs he said Kiev has got legal right to shell Donbass.
            I think Mr.Murray balances in between respecting the law and respecting human rights. After all, he is a diplomat.

            In my case, I value human rights higher than law. I think that laws must be established in such a way so that they value human lives higher than interests of states. That’s why I hate them all talking about Ukraine and its borders and democracy etc, instead of speaking for people living under Ukrainian regime.
            My points come not from me being Russian, my points come from me not being a British diplomat.

          • Ian Gibson

            “determined violence cannot be stopped except by opposing violence.”

            History teaches the exact opposite: violence breeds violence, and is next to impossible to stop by violence alone. There’s not a lot I admire about Churchill, but ‘Jaw jaw is better than war war’ is one of the most apt sayings ever (even if he didn’t practice it.) Northern Ireland rather proves the case too.

            ‘Ah, but Hitler,’ I hear you cry, and you’d have a point – except that Putin isn’t Hitler, and Russia isn’t Germany. At just about every stage, Russia sought to achieve its aims by diplomacy: it was only when the duplicity and intransigence of those it was attempting to negotiate with reached the point where they realised (much as China is now) that there is no fair dealing with us that things escalated to conflict. It is, quite literally, all the West understands.

          • Pears Morgaine

            ” In 1941, should Stalin and the Soviet government have appealed for peace and asked the Nazis to sign a treaty? “

            Maybe the US and UK should’ve stopped sending Russia weapons and food and urged Stalin to surrender in order to save lives.

          • Bayard

            “Maybe the US and UK should’ve stopped sending Russia weapons and food and urged Stalin to surrender in order to save lives.”

            I suspect there were many in the UK and US who thought that was exactly what they should do. However, just then, Russia was like Ukraine today and Germany was like Russia. The only difference is that then we were actually at war with Germany and today we are just shit-stirring.

          • Ian Gibson

            Genius: just plough ahead with the Hitler comparison anyway, that’s what I call engaging with an argument!

          • Ian Gibson

            “You were the one who brought up Hitler, Ian!”

            Yes, to forestall the ubiquitously heard reason given as to why there should be no question of negotiating with Russia: ‘appeasement!’, inevitably followed by ‘look how that failed with Hitler.’ But there simply isn’t any sensible comparison to be made, the circumstances and persons are totally different.

            So, to then go straight to a 1941 reference was indeed… genius.

  • Tatyana

    Courtenay Francis Raymond Barnett
    re: nuclear war

    The previous NATO strategic concept of 2010 said:

    “It restates our firm commitment to keep the door to NATO open to all European democracies that meet the standards of membership, because enlargement contributes to our goal of a Europe whole, free and at peace.
    It commits NATO to continuous reform towards a more effective, efficient and flexible Alliance, so that our taxpayers get the most security for the money they invest in defence.”

    Apparently, enlargement did not ensure peace in Europe, on the contrary, it was the main point of disagreement between NATO and Russia, and finally led to the Ukrainian conflict. Also, obviously their taxpayers get less and less security for the money they invest. Perhaps, taxpayers’ money is the key, because now the alliance is going to spend more.

    The end of June NATO held a summit and adopted new strategic concept. One can download the text from the NATO website

    Check para #29

    The strategic nuclear forces of the Alliance, particularly those of the United States, are the supreme guarantee of the security of the Alliance. The independent strategic nuclear forces of the United Kingdom and France have a deterrent role of their own and contribute significantly to the overall security of the Alliance. These Allies’ separate centres of decision-making contribute to deterrence by complicating the calculations of potential adversaries. NATO’s nuclear deterrence posture also relies on the United States’ nuclear weapons forward-deployed in Europe and the contributions of Allies concerned. National contributions of dual-capable aircraft to NATO’s nuclear deterrence mission remain central to this effort.”

    I understand US may deploy nukes in Europe much more easier, than the UK or France. Because US occupies another continent, and UK and France should somehow continue to exist in the same Europe.
    In addition, the United States already has experience in the use of nuclear weapons, I mean the dropping of US nuclear bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

    • Goose

      Just reading that you can see that NATO as currently constructed is very much an Alliance defined through American eyes and the US view of the world and its threats. The UK is but a mere augmentation to US power projection. Most already knew that we don’t have a truly independent foreign policy in the UK, laughably excused as the ‘special relationship’ but this puts it in black and white.

      NATO really should have been disbanded after the Cold War ended, for a safer Europe and more stable Europe – Russia relations. That might seem paradoxical to some given current tensions. But I can’t imagine a wholly European defence organisation and independent European diplomacy, would have gotten us where we are at today. US hostility to Russia has seemingly radicalised certain European countries too, their influence in their politics is nothing short of pernicious.

      • Goose

        I’d certainly include Poland and Estonia in that ‘radicalised’ list – far more bellicose than they’ve any right to be, and that’s entirely due to NATO, which has emboldened them. I can’t imagine a wholly European defence grouping would have encouraged such inflammatory rhetoric and the sort of threats we’ve heard emerging from these two countries of late.

        We seem to be being set up in Europe for a huge, totally unnecessary war at a time of the US’s choosing, all because of the US’s uncompromising, dogmatic approach to NATO expansion. Similarly, I don’t understand what UK or wider European interest is served by antagonising China and declaring them a threat? Preserving US global hegemony at all costs shouldn’t be a European priority.

        • StuartM

          This is from Doug Bandow at the Cato Institute:

          “First, though Russian President Vladimir Putin bears sole responsibility for the decision to attack Ukraine, the US and European governments created conditions for war. They recklessly violated security assurances made to Moscow and acted aggressively in ways Washington would never have accepted in the Western hemisphere. And bleated sanctimonious cant about the sacred sovereignty of other nations.

          Imagine if Russia (or China, or another adversarial great power) attempted to draw Mexico away from America toward an alternative trade block, promoted a street putsch ousting the elected, pro‐​US president, pushed political favorites for the new government, and promised Mexico membership in a hostile military alliance. Blob members, including the Washington Post editorial page and journalists, likely including Rogin, would have joined in frenzied unanimity demanding action, with nary a thought about Mexico’s right to make its own decisions and chart its own destiny. So much for the Blob’s commitment to the “rules based international order.”. “

          Google Maps tells me that the Estonian town of Narva on the Estonia-Russia border is 85 miles as the crow flies from the centre of St Petersburg – Russia’s second-largest city, say 100 miles by road. Imagine the USA’s reaction if Russian or Chinese troops and missiles were based within 100 miles of Chicago or San Diego – Washington would be sending in the tanks. (Just look at their ongoing hysteria over Cuba) Yet they say that Russia should simply accept having NATO troops and missiles on their borde.

          The only rational reason for the expansion of NATO is to launch an attack on Russia. The Hawks in Washington want to dance on the smoking ruins of Russia and the European NATO members are too spineless to stand up to them, sleepwalking into World War 3. To let in countries like Poland and the Baltic States that harbour ancient grudges against Russia because of Stalin or Catherine the Great is insane.

  • Ewan

    Do you think it much mattered to the politicians & oligarchs of Ukraine and the cold warriors of the EU & NATO whether a majority of voters wanted closer ties with the EU (or in the flood of propaganda from the West had much clue)? Do you think neutral between the West & Russia was infeasible? What was Russia to do after all the years futilely proposing mutual security treaties to the US & NATO as an alternative to what it clearly stated it considered an existential threat? And what was it to do about Ukraine’s willingness to be the means of provoking it? Genuine questions.

  • Tatyana

    I think I should also elaborate on my stance from my
    comment above
    because I don’t want Mr. Murray to take that one as an unfriendly criticism.

    Well, I believe that diplomats build their opinions on the existing laws – after all, this is their profession and their field of responsibility. They don’t have the freedom of a housewife to express their fantasies on the Internet.
    From my point of view, the laws are nothing like the commandments of the Lord. Actually, it’s just that people write laws for people; in my opinion, this is an agreed compromise, a sort of contract or set of rules.

    So, in case of Ukraine, two laws apply. One of them, which is emphasized by the Western political sphere, is the territorial integrity of the state. Another law, that Donbass and Russia refer to, is the people’s right to self-determination.
    Unfortunately, at the moment we don’t have a written rule on paper telling us how to act in case these two laws are a contradiction.

    But in my utopian fantasy world, it would have been clearly written in international law – ‘A state is obliged to respect the rights of all its citizens, including native language, religion, non-discrimination based on ethnicity, the right to choose local authorities, etc. If a state cannot provide its citizens with these rights, if the state uses military coercion, then the population can exercise their right to withdraw from the citizenship of such a state.’
    Well, from my point of view, this is logical, and we see that in the real world this is exactly what happened with all the former colonies that gained independence. Such a clearly articulated law would have avoided much violence.

    I also think that no diplomat will ever be allowed to say such a simple idea out loud, because in almost every large country in the modern world there is a region that may be interested in such a law. And this does not coincide with the interests of the governments of the “big countries”.

    • Blissex

      «So, in case of Ukraine, two laws apply. One of them, which is emphasized by the Western political sphere, is the territorial integrity of the state. Another law, that Donbass and Russia refer to, is the people’s right to self-determination.
      Unfortunately, at the moment we don’t have a written rule on paper telling us how to act in case these two laws are a contradiction.

      In international law they are not in contradiction, for states that have signed the U. N. Charter treaty: the U. N. Charter and its right to self-determination take precedence over state law, like all international treaties signed by a state. Besides the right to autonomy on the Donbas was written explicitly in the Minski I and Minski II treaties that the ukrainian government signed, so that also took precedent over ukrainian state law.

      «because in almost every large country in the modern world there is a region that may be interested in such a law. And this does not coincide with the interests of the governments of the “big countries”.»

      And here I must mention again the all-important difference between (our) “freedom-fighters” and (their) “terrorists”: the kosovars were “freedom-fighters” and so they have a right to self-determination, the people of the Donbas are “terrorists” and so they have no rights, never mind to self-determination.

      • Tatyana

        There was never any terrorism activity coming from Donbass.
        Turchinov labelled them ‘terrorists’ and sent military to their land.
        I can draw a parallel with other cases of fight for independence, and many involve horrible terrorism acts, violence against civilians. In Donbass there were protests, disobedience, rebellion, but nothing like terrorism.
        I hope I don’t offend Donbassians by my further observation, as it may look like arrogant assessment of a ‘bogemian’ easy-living person. I say it with my all respect. Population of Donbass are prevailingly workers. Simple people earning their living with their hands. Donbass is industrial region with seaports, coal, steel, etc.
        The girl from the workshop next to mine, now she’s offering nail service. In Donbass she was quality checking person at a hardware production. I learned this fact by chance – she saw me drawing wire via drawing plate and gave me precious advice on lubricant emulsion. It explains why … I wondered how she even started her nail service small business, she is not the selling person type, nor service person type.
        My father worked in Donbass when young, and he had relatives there. He also says people are simple hard working class people, living simple lives, far from trade, showbusiness, and other ‘easy, light jobs’.

  • Rosemary MacKenzie

    Alina Lipp is a German journalist who has been reporting on the military operation in the Donbass. Because she has been reporting what she sees which is what the German government describes as pro Russian she is considered a terrorist and been criminally charged by the German authorities. Also, Eva Bartlett, a Canadian independent journalist, who is reporting in the Donbass area says she feels safer in Russia than in Canada. Both these women are on the Ukraine so called “death list” for reporting what they see. So much for the notion of free press, free speech, democracy etc. The Ukraine issue is an American geopolitical effort to destabilize Russia’s economy and get its hands on Russia’s resources. The Americans or I should say the American government, controlled by the super rich has a long history of destabilizing countries, then looting their resources. All this is done under the guise of “protecting human rights and freedom” and we in the west have fallen for this rubbish for decades. Meanwhile the poor get poorer and even in the “rich” countries homelessness is sky high, people have to work two or three minimum wage jobs to survive, the health care systems (those of us who are lucky enough to have them) are disintegrating. There is a very good book by Noami Klein which describes exaclty what has been going on over the last seventy years, called The Shock doctrine, published in 2007 but is very, very relevant to what is going on in Ukraine today. I, personally, want to hear more about the multipolar world about which Putin talks. I like the concept of harmony and safety etc in the world order and I hope I live long enough to see it prevail in a very positive sense.

    • Blissex

      «So much for the notion of free press, free speech, democracy etc.»

      From the “Washington Consensus” side it is a war, and in war time there is no “notion of free press, free speech” because the task of the media is to to reinforce home front morale, as directed by the military. That is something that happened in WW1, WW2, and every other war.

    • Blissex

      «The Ukraine issue is an American geopolitical effort to destabilize Russia’s economy and get its hands on Russia’s resources.»

      That is a short-sighted version, it not always about sort-term money making, they could make big money with joint ventures etc., and the Russian Federation was also useful as a fake threat to demand more money for the military-industrial-congressional complex.

      The USA is just applying domino theory and the target is China-mainland, not the Russian Federation, which is just a domino:

      • The USA first got eastern Germany and Poland, and the next dominoes were bits of Yugoslavia and then Romania and Bulgaria, and finally Ukraine itself.
      • Using the Ukraine domino the USA are trying to get the RF domino, for their real goal is regime change to be “invited” to build a chain of DOD/CIA biowarfare labs and bases on the northern and western borders of the PRC, from which to train, fund, arm large numbers of “freedom fighters” armies inside China-mainland.

      It is “prometheism” applied to the PRC after applying it first to the USSR and then to the RF:

      “a political project initiated by Józef Piłsudski, statesman of the Second Polish Republic from 1918 to 1935. Its aim was to weaken the Russian Empire and its successor states, including the Soviet Union, by supporting nationalist independence movements among the major non-Russian peoples that lived within the borders of Russia and the Soviet Union.”

      “Opening and dividing China”, The World Today, May 1992:

      “Needless to say, not all these regions are like to have the same views on foreign policy questions. Coastal regions would be less willing to see relations with the United States deteriorate, or take a hard line with Hong Kong or Taiwan.”

      Same old, same old.

  • Tatyana

    Another remark for Tom Welsh, on OSCE. Re: “But the OSCE have always worked for Kiev and Washington”

    I think it is wrong to say all the organization is corrupt, but some people in it may be corrupt.
    That is what Russian news reported:

    Documents on cooperation between the OSCE mission and special services found in Kherson

    “… the fashionable mansion of the former head of the SBU department in the Kherson region, General Vyacheslav Savchenko. Expensive decoration of the house indicates the existence of large sources of funding.
    Special forces of the Russian Guard found in the house documents of the OSCE international monitoring organization, which testify to cooperation with the Ukrainian special services, the report says.
    It follows from the documents of the mission in Ukraine that the representatives of the organization enjoyed the personal patronage of Savchenko. Frequent visits of OSBE observers to this house are confirmed by witnesses from among the local residents…
    …locations of the units of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation in the Republic of Crimea, in the territories of the Rostov, Smolensk, Belgorod and Voronezh regions.* This once again confirms the conduct by the mission staff of intelligence activities in the interests of the Ukrainian special services, as well as the special services of the NATO countries…”

    * unlike Ms. Truss, many commenters here know Geography and realise that Rostov, Smolensk, Belgorod and Voronezh are the regions of Russia

    More names here

    “…residents of the LPR from among the OSCE personnel … for a long time collected secret information in the military and socio-political spheres of the LPR.*
    a ‘list of infrastructure facilities in the Lugansk region, possibly subject to fire damage’ was found…
    The Head of the OSCE Severodonetsk Team, Yaroslav Kurak, a citizen of Poland, was instructed by the Deputy Head of the OSCE Luhansk Team on Human Rights Issues, Pilar Castro Moto, who is a Spanish citizen, to collect information about infrastructure facilities located on the territory of the Lugansk region.”
    * there’s a video in the article, showing the papers, with names and coordinates of the objects

    There’s another article

    “… At the positions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on various sections of the line of demarcation, technical means were found that make up the control complex for video cameras installed by the OSCE on the line of contact between the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the armed forces of the DPR. In particular, laptops with software produced by the Ukrainian company Ukrspek were found. These laptops were used by the commanders of units of the armed formations of Ukraine, who controlled the OSCE cameras to correct artillery and aviation fire on the positions of the people’s militia of the DPR.
    Earlier, DPR Foreign Minister Natalya Nikonorova reported that a criminal case was opened in the republic on the fact of fixing the locations of DPR troops with the help of OSCE cameras for further transmission of information.
    Nikonorova previously stated in Telegram that the OSCE should stop its activities on the territory of the DPR until April 30. According to her, the activities of the mission should not continue on the territory of the republic, since the political reality has changed – the Minsk agreements are no longer relevant, and the legal reality has changed due to the official recognition of the DPR by the Russian Federation.”

    sorrry for typing such a long comment and thanks for reading it 🙂

    To support Mr. Graham Phillips, he is not alone to interview captured British mercenaries. Here is the interview of Andrew Hill, in English.

    I bookmarked it because the article also shows his papers, with coordinates of Vokzalna street in Irpen, and there’s an entry on the page saying ‘280 civ mass grave’.

    • Blissex

      «I think it is wrong to say all the organization is corrupt, but some people in it may be corrupt»

      Many NGOs complain about being heavily infiltrated by spies and saboteurs from major security agencies, which makes them eventually hated by the local populations they try to help, and that is quite as expected because:

      * Well paid security service agents and saboteurs are more likely to volunteer to join NGOs and put themselves into dangerous situations than the average middle class person.

      * For well paid security service agent and saboteurs it is much less risky to infiltrate dangerous situations as NGO members than on their own.

      * It is advantageous for security agencies to put their well paid spies and saboteurs into NGOs because by claiming neutrality and looking beneficent they get much easier and wider access to dangerous situation areas, and even just being able to “influence” NGO messaging help a lot the propaganda effort of security agencies.

      * It is fairly easy for security agencies to infiltrate and take over an NGO.

      Handwavingly I would think that 1/3 of western NGO members are working indirectly (as informants) or directly (as agents) for security agencies.

      PS For example I have no idea whether David Miliband, the neoliberal politician who is now head of the “International Rescue Committe” (on a £800,000 salary) has currently any friendly relationship to MI6/SIS, CIA, etc., even if he was for some time the UK Foreign Minister and therefore the direct controller of MI6/SIS.

  • Jack

    It is not only people like Graham Philips that are forced to change his view on Ukraine, now Amnesty obviously regret they criticized Ukraine in their latest report altogether!

    ” Amnesty report on Kiev’s violations to be reviewed
    International experts will check “what went wrong” with the document accusing Ukraine of breaching humanitarian law “

    …and by that Amnesty are of course tossing their credibility out of the window just like that.
    Was there a threat of cut in economic aid by the west perhaps? Yikes..

    Note that Amnesty criticized Russia even more and said that nothing of the wrong-doing by Ukraine justify Russian policies. Still, the warmongers in the west could not take it!

    Could you imagine if Russia or China put this kind of pressure and started a smear campaign against Amnesty to rescind a report on their alleged warcrimes?!

    What the h*ll is going on in the west? This is not rational in any sense!

    • Tatyana

      Too many lies that ordinary people cannot digest. Too much bias. Normal journalism fears to lose all the credibility within their audience, which means less money.
      Couple of days ago I met news about CNN, saying they’ve lost 90% of their viewers, so they changed the CEO and the new one, Chris Licht, even visited Congress to invite republicans again to speak on their channel.

    • Goose

      It’s also happened with Israel in relation to their tactics and war conduct. Western politicians were tripping over themselves to side with Israel and thus now think it’s normal to criticise independent human rights organisations reporting events as they see them, without fear of favour. It’s an unjustified, unfair attack on their integrity.

      Another freedom of speech issue…

      We’ve seen much understandable outrage over the recent horrific attack on Sir Salman Rushdie, with politicians claiming free speech must be defended this, free speech must be defended that’ – if only they meant it.

      I’ve only read a brief synopsis of his novel The Satanic Verses – it controversially re-imagines the founding of Islam. Personally, I have no issue with criticising or satirising any and all religions, being firmly in the agnostic camp myself. But I do know that if an author wrote a book highly critical and /or mocking Judaism and the Torah, then the very same politicians wouldn’t be so fast in rushing to that author’s defence on freedom of speech grounds, or making him a Sir for that matter. Western support for freedom of speech is highly selective. You only have to look at the treatment of non-Zionist Jews and the way they are completely ostracized by politicians and the media.

      • Tatyana

        Once upon a time, the Phoenicians lived on our planet, those guys who invented phonetic writing.
        Compared to hieroglyphs, it was an advanced system that even allowed the speech of foreigners to be transmitted, a vital improvement for city-states at the crossroads of trade routes.

        The phonetic writing began to spread to the East, it was adopted in the Aramaic language and gave rise to Jewish, Arabic, Uighur, Armenian, Georgian writing systems. Spreading to the West, this gave rise to the Greek, and subsequently from it, to the Latin and Cyrillic writing systems. Looks like something truly global, eh?

        A couple of hundred years before the birth of Christ, in a city founded by the Phoenicians, in Carthage, a certain writer wrote down the phrase in Latin: “Quod licet Jovi, non licet bovi”.
        Only after about 300 years, Rome will take over the territories of Britain, and after another about 1500 years, Britain will colonize America. And about 500 years later, in modern times the principle of “Quod licet Jovi, non licet bovi” is still widely applied.

        So, I want to say: firstly – nothing is new; secondly – human society does not progress too far from its ancient tribal hierarchical attitudes.

        • Goose

          Paul Mason wrote about his fears of an anti-imperial left emerging. But Mason is knowledgeable enough to know, it’s not simply people being anti-west out of spite or for the sake of contrarianism. It’s the brazen hypocrisy and a lack of consistency in the US/UK positions, positions that literally anyone can easily pick holes in. It’s this that’s causing people to lose faith.

          The West’s message to Ukraine : Resist occupation, fight ,fight fight; we’ll supply all the weaponry you need; reject dialogue. Palestine – your resistance to occupation is terrorism – only through dialogue with your vastly superior armed oppressor (Israel) can you hope to achieve your statehood dreams i.e. a completely false hope.

          Similarly on Syria – we often hear western politicians claiming Assad must go because he’s a dictator – he has a far better claim to having a democratic mandate than any of : Egypt’s military dictator – the US allowed Egypt’s post-Mubarak nascent democracy to be snuffed out to allow for someone more submissive to the US’s and Israel’s demands to resume what is effectively now military rule. The Jordanian monarch; the Gulf monarchies (Qatar, Kuwait, and Bahrain), two absolute monarchies (Saudi Arabia and Oman). All of whom are supported & propped up by the US.

          When foreign policy is so brazenly inconsistent is it any wonder so-called western ‘values’ seem like a hypocritical joke to many on the left? I doubt Paul Mason could provide any satisfactory answer to the sheer inconsistency. I’ve never read Mason urging the training and arming of the Palestinians.

  • Blissex

    “So I do not agree with Phillips’ cheerleading for the Russian “side” in this disastrous war.”

    He was really supporting the ukrainian DONBAS (not the russian) side, the victims of 8 years of vicious war of aggression and ethnic cleansing by the fascist ukrainian government against their right to self determination as either autonomy or independence.

    A war started officially on 9 may 2014 with the Mariupol massacre, widely praised by the USA:

    “With the open support of Washington and its European allies, the regime installed by Washington and Berlin in last February’s fascist-led putsch is now extending its reign of terror against all popular resistance in Ukraine. That is the significance of the events in the major eastern Ukrainian city of Mariupol yesterday. After tanks, armored personnel carriers and heavily armed troops were unleashed on unarmed civilians in the city, the Kiev regime claimed to have killed some 20 people. The Obama administration immediately blamed the violent repression on “pro-Russian separatists.” This is the second time in a week that the Obama administration has defended the role of the Kiev government in the murder of anti-government demonstrators, having done so following the Odessa killings (see: “US defends role of Kiev regime and fascists in Odessa massacre”).
    The violence bore all the hallmarks of a calculated provocation on the 69th anniversary of the defeat of Nazi Germany by the Soviet Red Army. […] These admirers of Hitler and his Ukrainian collaborators are now serving, with Washington’s full support, as the regime’s shock troops against popular opposition centered in the industrialized east of the country as well as in Russian-speaking centers such as Odessa in the south. The same forces have been given free rein to attack anyone in the west of the country who dares to oppose the fascistic government in Kiev. Outraged accounts from residents of Mariupol, verified by journalists on the ground, make it clear that many of those targeted by the Ukrainian National Guard and associated fascist elements on Friday had been participating in a Victory Day rally commemorating the anniversary.”

  • Tatyana

    well, while we are waiting for an international commission to investigate the shelling of the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant (Ukraine), as today they publish the news about the blowing up of six pillars at the nuclear power plant in Kursk (Russia).
    I want to say that ordinary people need peace and security. With such a catastrophe, we will all be very concerned about the probability of not surviving, much more than politics.

    I suppose this is not reported in Western media. With all Russian sources silenced, how can people prepare for the worst?

    • Rosemary MacKenzie

      Found the report in Ria Novosti – Kursk NPP returned to normal operation after sabotage of power lines. Ukraine people must have been also deprived of power since the plant supplies electricity of North and northeastern Ukraine. More insecurity and anxiety, and no I haven’t seen a report about Kursk only Crimea and how the awful Russians are resisting an inspection of Zaporozhye – no mention of the fact that the Ukraine won’t allow the inspectors to travel through Russia, which is the real problem.

      I completely agree, ordinary people just want peace and security, not this endless racheting up of tensions.

      CBC is fixated on Pelosi and Trump – Trump for god’s sake!

      • Tatyana

        Rosemary, in the very beginning of the conflict a legal act was signed, on reporting about Russian Army. Like, you cannot say ‘war’ but ‘special military operation’. I suppose, it may also mean that some news are censored. I understand they don’t want people to panic, so they only report some days later, when the information is checked and facts proved.
        We’ve heard of 2 exploisons in Crimea, the latest was reported as sabotage.
        Now, the same they say about Kursk nuclear facility.
        I’m afraid that with this delayed mode of reporting we are in danger.

        My 2 cats send their best regards to yours 🙂

        • Rosemary MacKenzie

          There seems to be a lot more information in the Russian press than the Western regarding the military operation, in my view. Does anyone else find this so? Much of the stuff in the western msm is obviously propaganda. I know about the law passed regarding reference to the military operation and about knowingly circulating false information, and I’m sure you are right, Tatyana, with regards to the press reports about Crimea and Kusk being a bit slow, and can understand that it is worrying. It is a good thing the Russians took the Zaporozhye nuclear plant early, think they know more about this kind of reactor than anyone and the Ukraine engineers, who know its day to day routine, are still running it. I hope sense will prevail about its safety. Horrifying that nuclear power plants can become hostages in conflicts but it is predictable knowing how military minds can operate.

          The report on CBC regarding the car bomb in which Darya Dugina was killed was quite balanced. I had never heard of her father and can’t find out much that is objective about him. It appears he was the intended victim. Interestingly, the report got into the Russian media very quickly.

          Many purrs from Upper Branch!

  • Crispa

    Phillips’s You tube output is prolific. It begins with clips of the Euro 2012 football matches held in Ukraine, He then chronicles the events from the Maidan, which includes gruesome footage, and taken together his work then documents the whole series of events in the Donbass from 2014 onwards including the period 2015 – 2022 that western media seems to have forgotten about, when the Ukraine Nazis were continuing to terrorise the Donbass people. It includes one report of him in a DPR trench with Ukraine shells falling all around him. He challenges the reporting of both BBC and ITV and there is a short piece from 2014/2015 where he accuses James Mate of false and unethical reporting of a specific incident. Mate in turn calls him a Russian shill, which speaks volumes about where he was coming from. With material, albeit of uneven quality and content, that is and will be of considerable historical interest in years to come It is not surprising that he has incurred the wrath of the denialist Russia hating racist UK government. Unlike Amnesty he does not seem to be cowed by his being singled out as his more recent “reportage” (as he calls it) shows.

  • Anna

    We certainly DON’T have genuine freedom of speech in the UK. Not at all. And yet so many people bang on about how we do, how it makes us superior to Russia etc. It is a joke.

  • Mark

    Dear Mr. Murray

    how is it that you missed to mention the violent Government overthrow in 2014 of a President elected by a “pro-russian minority”?
    And is the BBC, a known propaganda outlet, as thrustworthy as Mr. Phillips, who has yet to be caught in a big lie?

    I do enjoy your blog. The reports from jail were/are excellent, and much needed.

    Best regards
    Mark Wolff

  • Kaiama

    Personally there is much in Phillips’ line on Ukraine that I do not agree with. It is plain to me that broadly, the majority of the people of Ukraine genuinely wished in 2014 to move towards the EU rather than Russia, and dramatic efforts by Putin to reverse that process backfired.
    Once you realise where people on both sides live, this argument completely falls apart. Kosovo – OK. Crimea/Donbass – not OK = Hypocrisy.

    • Crispa

      “It is plain to me that broadly, the majority of the people of Ukraine genuinely wished in 2014 to move towards the EU rather than Russia”

      is not factually correct. A majority of the whole population was still against Maidan and the outcome it brought. In any case if there was such large majority support pre-Maidan, there would have been no cause to effect change illegally. Had there been anything like a democratic process the views of the people of Donbass, who were loyal to their historic ties with Russia, would have been given due consideration and they would not have been terrorised by the Nazi militia for holding those views. None of which has anything to do with “Phillips’s line”. He simply went there and recorded what he found on the ground.

  • Paul Greenwood

    English liberty was founded on sinners not saints. John Bunyan spent 11 years in gaol for preaching………John Wilkes was gaoled for publishing details of parliamentary debates (nowadays “democracy” is indifferent)…….and as I recall the Fire Committee on local authorities used to hold the power of censorship on plays

    Graham Phillips is a British Citizen with a clearance as a Civil Servant in his past………he is entitled to his house, his bank account, and his reputation……..and Liz Truss should be more respectful of the Rights of British Citizens

    The only aspect of her sanctions mania against Russians that holds real prospects for the future is when they are applied against Israelis unless they disown those who are stealing Palestinian land or forfeit their assets to compensate them……………what is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander

  • Bob

    Why was it clear to you that the uprising in 2014 was supported by the majority of Ukraine’s population?
    How many from eastern Ukraine took part?

    Why couldn’t those that opposed the then democratically elected government wait till the next election? I’m sure it was only a year or so away.

    The previous election had been deemed fair and free by western observers.

    Decent piece, but you let yourself with that assumption.

1 2