The Twilight of Freedom 194

Three British journalists I know personally – Johanna Ross, Vanessa Beeley and Kit Klarenberg – have each in the last two years been detained at immigration for hours on re-entering their own country, and questioned by police under anti-terrorist legislation.

This is plainly an abuse of the power to detain at port of entry, because in each case they could have been questioned at any time in the UK were there legitimate cause, and the questioning was not focused on their travels.

They were in fact detained and interrogated simply for holding and publishing dissident opinion on foreign policy, and in particular for supporting a more collaborative approach to Russia – with which, lest we forget, the UK is not at war.

These detentions have taken place over the period of a couple of years. All were targeted for journalism and this is plainly a continuing policy of harassment of dissident British journalists.

I have three times in that same period been questioned by police in my own home in Edinburgh for journalism, over three separate matters. I spent four months in jail for publicising essential information to show that a high level conspiracy was behind the false accusations against Scottish Independence leader Alex Salmond.

Julian Assange remains in maximum security jail for publicising the truth about war crimes. Meanwhile a new National Security Bill goes through the Westminster parliament, which will make it illegal for a journalist possess or publish classified information.

This has never been illegal. The responsibility has always lain with the whistleblower or leaker, not the journalist or publisher. It seeks to enshrine in UK law precisely what the US Government is seeking to achieve against Assange using the US 1917 Espionage Act. This is a huge threat to journalism.

It is also worth pointing out that, if Evan Gershkovich was indeed doing nothing more than he has claimed to have been doing in Russia, that action would land him a long jail sentence in either the USA or the UK under the provisions which both governments are attempting to enforce.

On top of that, you have the Online Safety Bill, which under the excuse of protecting against paedophilia, will require social media gatekeepers to remove any kind of content the government deems as illegal.

When you put all this together with the new Public Order Act, which effectively gives the police authority to ban any protest they wish to ban, there is a fundamental change happening.

This is not just a theoretical restriction on liberty. Active enforcement against non-approved speech is already underway, as shown by those detentions and, most strongly of all, by Julian’s continued and appalling incarceration.

To complete the horror, there is no longer a genuine opposition within the political class. Keir Starmer’s Labour Party opposes none of this wave of attacks on civil liberties. The SNP has been sending out identical stock replies from its MPs on Julian Assange, 100% backing the UK government line on his extradition and imprisonment.

I feel this very personally. I know all of these people affected – Julian, Alex, Kit, Vanessa, Johanna, and view them as colleagues whose rights I defend, even though I do not always agree with all of their disparate views.

Two other people I know personally and admire are under attack. The campaign of lies and innuendo against Roger Waters this last few weeks has been astonishing in both its viciousness and its mendacity, recalling the dreadful attacks on Jeremy Corbyn.

More mundane but also part of the same phenomenon, my friend Randy Credico has had his Twitter account cancelled.

To be a dissident in the UK, or indeed the “West”, today is to see, every single day, your friends persecuted and to see the walls close in upon yourself.

A unified political class, controlled by billionaires, is hurtling us towards fascism. That now seems to me undeniable.


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194 thoughts on “The Twilight of Freedom

1 2
  • Crispa

    It took six officers to question Klarenberg – an MP might at least question if this is a good use of taxpayers’ money – on what seems to be agreed specious grounds based on a law that seems to be in clear breach of human rights and certainly nothing to do with countering terrorism. There is a hint in the Grayzone article (helpful link from Stevie Boy at beginning of thread) that the CIA might also be pulling the strings here.

    I wonder how these interrogators get to be appointed and trained to do this kind of job, police are not usually of the brightest.
    The two gems for me from the account of the interview were one:
    “One officer complained incessantly about Keir Starmer being “useless,” prompting Klarenberg to wonder if the comments were a dangle aimed at drawing him out”. Starmer a dangle?!
    The other in the context of an “extended philosophical discussion about journalism and the public interest”. “Your work might be interesting to the public,” an officer told Klarenberg, “but it’s not in the public interest.” No comment needed.

    • Cornudet

      An angler might use a worm as bait for a fish. It seems that the police officer in this case was using the political equivalent as bait for an anti establishment journalist

    • Squeeth

      What’shismname in Wilt had the best advice “Keep yer hands on yer bollocks and don’t tell the bastards nothing!”

    • Tony

      On a similar matter:

      Shane Sullivan wrote a book about the assassination of Robert Kennedy. In the preface, he wrote about a strange experience he had when he discovered a possible CIA role.

      “Former CIA operatives I interviewed suggested that my phone would be monitored and that I think about the safety of my family.
      A few weeks after my initial discovery of apparent CIA operatives at the (Ambassador) (H)otel, I had an odd visit from two undercover detectives from the Greater London Metropolitan Police…”

  • Harry Law

    As a condition for ending the war, an aide to President Volodymyr Zelensky has demanded Russia remove its military forces along its border with Ukraine. Kiev hopes the area within Moscow’s borders will be manned by international forces.

    Presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak called for a 100-120 kilometer demilitarized zone within Russia. “It will be necessary to introduce a demilitarization zone of 100-120 km on the territory of Belgorod, Bryansk, Kursk, and Rostov republics. Probably with a mandatory international control contingent at the first stage,” he tweeted on Monday.

    Kiev is seeking to take control over Moscow’s nuclear and missile programs as well. “Reduction of offensive weapons (missiles with extended range). International conference to organize control over the nuclear arsenal of the [Russian Federation],” Podolyak said in a separate tweet.

    Podolyak has made other demands of Moscow on the social network during recent days. On Saturday, he stated that the war can only end when the Russian government of Vladimir Putin was removed from power.

    I thought Bagdad Bob was delusional, but these Ukrainian clowns take the biscuit.

    • Bayard

      “Kiev hopes the area within Moscow’s borders will be manned by international forces.”

      Presumably, by “international”, they don’t mean Chinese, South African or Indian.

    • terence callachan

      To Harry Law,
      Moscow is only 400 miles from the Ukraine border there is no way given the Cold War history and evidence of USA aggression worldwide , that Russia will ever agree to NATO a military organisation that does nothing without USA permission, installing weapons or personnel within Ukraine .

    • AG

      Harry Law

      yeah in a twisted way Podolyak is “funny”.

      But then again: With many it will reverberate. Its very simple propaganda intended for a specific audience you are not part of.

      But we know well enough who that audience out there is. And as MSM is concerned in terms of volume they are stronger.

      Eventually even if noone in the West would buy Podolyak´s tale , it serves the bottom-line purpose to show the Russians no peace deal is possible that would deserve that name (re: Russians propositions to NATO/US in December 2021).

      On the highest level in our part of the world no government wants this war to end. Unless the cost will exceed the benefits.
      And as the US is concerned those benefits are enormous.

      Just think of Iraq. What is left from that? 1) a region bombed back into the stone age 2) incredible profits for the companies involved during the war and the so-called reconstruction.

      The same will most likely happen in UKR.

      Major poverty, with poors held in check and an affluent class of people with contracts to the Western arms manufacturer multis, all under the pretext of the new Cold War frontier, which eats right through a partitioned Ukraine, the West occupied by Polish troops and some other Europeans. the East by Russia.

      That´s the future.

      So Podolyak might seem delusional but only in a world where sanity would prevail which is not ours.

      The only thing they have to figure out is how to agree on not stationing WMDs in Western Ukraine without starting WWIII.
      Because that is the only real red line here. Understandbly so.

      p.s. sry for my pessimism and the length. It was intended as one phrase comment…
      But after 18 months of childish hopes just these last days I have decided to face the facts.

      Which does make resistance ever more important, I wanna add

  • Harry Law

    Just to add to my accusations of provocations of Russia, the US appointed a special prosecutor at a cost of millions of dollars and years of investigative work only to find no Russian interference with the collusion of Donald Trump. But it was found that 51 of the top intelligence figures had deliberately inferred that the Biden crime family disclosures had all the hallmarks of a Russian disinformation campaign, thus MSM failure to report on the contents of the laptop, two weeks before the election, ensuring a Biden victory.
    Our host in this blog also proved that the leaks from the Democratic party computers could not be the result of a Russian hack.
    On 15 December 2016, the British tabloid Daily Mail quoted Craig Murray, a former U.K. ambassador to Uzbekistan and “close associate” of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, as saying that the Democratic National Committee’s e-mails were not obtained by WikiLeaks due to the efforts of Russian hackers but were instead leaked by a disgruntled DNC operative who had legal access to them:

    • glenn_nl

      Ah, mention of the laptop again.

      You recall I asked what evidence there was was for it, last time you made this assertion?

      Quite a bit of incredulity from you, that I should fail to take on faith that it was full of proven, terrible stuff – and then nothing. Others couldn’t believe my doubts either – they also had nothing.

      You referenced ‘marcopolousa’ org elsewhere but who are they? Where did they come from? Why should their word be trusted, or taken as anything except more assertions?

      I have to admit, it’s puzzling why some people – your good self included – are so adamant about a point, but then unwilling to show any evidence for it.

      • zoot

        you seem incredulous & annoyed at the suggestion Joe Biden is corrupt. do you know anything of his career at all?

          • Gordon Hastie

            Of course he (and his son) are corrupt, but lets ignore their dealings in Ukraine, eh? Biden’s the worst kind of Washington hack (the first I heard of Biden was when he plagiarised Neil Kinnock in the early 90s – classy) and now the idiot’s obeying his orders and taking the world to catastrophe. i don’t suppose the photo of Biden bowing before Henry Kissinger bothers you either.

          • glenn_nl

            GH: ” i don’t suppose the photo of Biden bowing before Henry Kissinger bothers you either.”

            You suppose way too much, Gordon. Try not to be so, erm, hastie, eh?

      • Lapsed Agnostic

        Apparently,, which supposedly has around 10,000 new files purporting to be from the infamous electronic device went live today, Glenn, but has crashed due to volume of traffic:

        I haven’t viewed any of them, but you’ll probably be able to tell if the images have been generated by AI if the prozzies etc have 17 fingers or thereabouts. (Why does AI think that people have loads of fingers? Even the div kids how many fingers most people have.)

        • glenn_nl

          Thanks LA, but where did this site come from, and is it credible?

          I have no interest in viewing illegal images myself, and nor would anyone else of any sense. The idea presumably isn’t to “see for yourself”, but to see the conclusion of a proper body that has assessed it.

          • Tom Welsh

            ‘The idea presumably isn’t to “see for yourself”, but to see the conclusion of a proper body that has assessed it’.

            And there you have it; how do you define “a proper body”? If you think about it for a moment, that particular argument is turtles all the way down.

            Educated scepticism is the basis not only of science but of democracy. The only safe way to acquire reliable knowledge is, wherever possible, to see for yourself. Failing that, you need a network of trust.

            There may have been a time when a “proper body” normally received a degree of trust; if so, that time is long gone.

          • Johnny Conspiranoid

            ” see the conclusion of a proper body that has assessed it.”
            Are there any proper bodies that can tell us which bodies are proper bodies for assessing it? And so ad infinitum.

          • glenn_nl

            TW / JC :

            So someone’s guilty if you like to think they are, and evidence is whatever / declares it to be.

            Of course one cannot check very much for themselves. Even if someone says, “Look what was on this laptop!” – how do you know that really was on it? Or just put there?

            Seems the level of credulity has dropped to a very low bar for some people around here.

            We have posters asserting in absolutes that evidence exists – making zero qualifiers – and a case made, when in fact that ‘evidence’ is dubious at best.

          • Anthony

            So who do you trust to provide a truthful assessment, Glenn? The US government? Its alphabet soup of intel agencies, all of whom dismissed the laptop story as Russian disinformation? The highly credentialed journalists and respectable media outlets who all peddled that same lie and before that every other bit of Russiagate baloney? BBC Verify? Whose word must we consider unimpeachable on old Hunter and his daddy?

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for your reply Glenn. Former Trump aide Garrett Zeigler claims to be behind it, via his Marco Polo organisation. As to its credibility, it may be possible to fake hundreds or thousands of photos, but it would take a considerable amount of effort, and it’s difficult to do without leaving clues that can be spotted by experts.

            According to Delaware law, the laptop is now the property of the computer repair shop in Wilmington, since Hunter didn’t pay the bill within the appropriate time period. I would imagine that under US law, its new owner is allowed to give/sell copies of its hard drive to whoever it wants, and they can put the contents on the internet without Hunter’s permission, as long as they’re not sexually explicit (Zeigler claims that all genitalia in the photos have been blurred).

            Even though prostitution is illegal throughout the US (apart from a few licensed premises in a handful of sparsely-populated counties in Nevada), Hunter’s private life is largely irrelevant to the big picture. What matters is whether there are emails/messages in there that implicate his father in political corruption/graft.

          • glenn_nl

            LA: Thank you again for your reply.

            Whether the laptop has a lot of material showing drinking, drugs, prostitutes and so on is of very little interest to me. I don’t know Biden’s son, never met him, and don’t really see much need to pay attention to it.

            What is of concern is the smears that go around unchallenged – I believe it was the white supremacist Tucker Carlson who suggested it contained illegal images, while offering nothing in the way of evidence but his say-so. That has been echoed far and wide, and it’s now being repeated as unquestionable fact even here.

            Indeed, see what happens if someone even questions the point. Why, that person must be a fan of Biden – with all sorts of other rather stupid assumptions thrown in. Not by yourself, I hasten to add.

          • glenn_nl

            Anthony / JC:

            A: “Whose word must we consider unimpeachable on old Hunter and his daddy?”
            JC: “Are there any proper bodies that can tell us which bodies are proper bodies for assessing it?

            I’ll tell you who we shouldn’t be taking conclusions from – anonymous sources and far-right agitators on the Internet.

            It’s a good thing that people like you aren’t put in charge of deciding what counts as evidence, and determining guilt, eh?

          • Bayard

            “And there you have it; how do you define “a proper body”?”

            That’s easy, a “proper body” is one that comes to the same conclusions as you would come to. Anything else would be “disinformation”, probably Russian.

          • Anthony

            Defend corrupt centrist elites and their tame media or you are .. a white supremacist — the law according to Glenn_nl.

          • glenn_nl

            Bayard: “That’s easy, a “proper body” is one that comes to the same conclusions as you would come to.

            Which conclusion would that be?

            Did you misread and think I made one, or is this merely another of your snide little digs?

          • Bayard

            “Which conclusion would that be?”

            How would I know? I can’t read minds. In any case, I didn’t even imply that you had come to a conclusion, nor was my comment particularly aimed at you, or even a reply to one of your comments, as you would have noticed if you’d read my comment carefully before rushing to put finger to keyboard, it was more a comment on how the powers that be think.

          • glenn_nl

            B: “ In any case, I didn’t even imply that you had come to a conclusion, nor was my comment particularly aimed at you, or even a reply to one of your comments […] “

            Fair point. Sorry.

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for your reply Glenn. If Tucker has suggested that material on the lap-top as ‘illegal’, then he was being disingenuous / quite clever, in that, in uncensored form, the pornographic images would be illegal to share, as the participants have not given their consent. For Hunter, or any of the women, to have any chance of exercising any rights to privacy though (not something that is generally very well upheld in the US, according to Privacy International), they would likely have to convince a judge or jury that, on the balance of probabilities, no prostitution or hard drug-taking, both of which are illegal in almost all of the US, was occurring.

            As far as I’m aware, no sexual images with minors have been found on the hard drive. I’m fairly sure that images of Hunter with pre-pubescent girls that are in the public domain – some of which were linked to in Jack’s comment above (FYI girls are clothed) – have been faked.

          • glenn_nl

            LA: Thanks for the reply again, but I was being a little euphemistic by saying ‘illegal’. Carlson specifically alleged that the laptops contained “child porn”, which itself is a euphemism for crime scene evidence of under-age sexual assault.

            He felt that was being clever, no doubt, because they could dance around forever making claims about it but never producing any evidence. In the meantime, this adds to the MAGA fantasy of their opposition comprising largely of child abusing, communist, American-hating Satan worshipers. I wish that was an exaggeration, sadly huge numbers have bought into that absurdity.

            Useful idiots – even here – are eager to push at least part of that narrative, when the fact of the matter is that Biden’s son was deeply troubled, had a significant substance abuse problem, but Biden loved him regardless and never gave up on him.

            If some people – particularly those most eager to accept without evidence these laptop allegations – want to hold that against Biden, that’s their problème.

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for your reply Glenn, and for the extra info. If Tucker has indeed claimed that Hunter had CP on his laptop, Hunter would be entitled to sue him and/or Fox for defamation (assuming that there wasn’t any on there). As it is, Hunter is currently being sued for defamation himself by the owner of the computer repair shop, but is countersuing for invasion of privacy. We’ll see how he gets on. Enjoy what’s left of the weekend.

  • Fat Jon

    “A unified political class, controlled by billionaires, is hurtling us towards fascism. That now seems to me undeniable.”

    Sadly, some of us have suspected this for years; but have been jeered at, humiliated, and labelled ‘conspiracy nut jobs’ (or worse) by just about everyone they mention this to.

    I’m not sure how it can be stopped, with the police and security services on the side of the billionaires due to the promise of further big, fat pay cheques. I suppose there is the chance of “give them enough rope and they will hang themselves” but how far advanced will the political cancer have spread before that might happen?

    • markgolding

      Let’s make a hundred ‘freedom’ websites – grab a domain for a couple of quid and hosting can be free. (free– Dom) Populate the site with the messages of freedom. Put the domain links on social media – aim to grab a thousand visitors each – not easy yet work on promoting your freedom site.

  • Dave

    New Labour had the same authoritarian instincts, and Starmer is no better. Bunyan wrote a book on The Political Police In Britain in 1976. The rich don’t want their wealth threatened.

  • Beware the Leopard

    From the discussion in this commentary:
    British Police Detain Grayzone Reporter [Kit Klarenberg]
    (Immediate context begins around the 13:50 mark.)

    Max Blumenthal: I have other journalist friends who left [the UK] under advice from lawyers, who were told that even though they were British citizens, that they were risking everything by staying there, simply for expressing their opinions about what was taking place in the Ukraine and the British involvement there.

    On that point, Blumenthal does not elaborate further in the discussion.

    • Tom Welsh

      The irony is that it is HMG that has been behaving illegally, or dancing on the very edge of illegality, with its appalling and outrageous attempts to provoke Russia. It has certainly been responsible for many deaths and injuries and much property damage; more critically, it has caused senior Russian politicians and other opinion leaders to declare openly that the UK is at war with Russia.

      That is not a trivial matter.

      Many Westerners have no inkling of how Russians in general, and the Russian government in particular, think. I certainly have no privileged knowledge, but I studied Russian history briefly when young and have taken an interest in the country ever since.

      Some salient facts which I feel HMG should attend to are:

      – That Russians are not much given to displays of emotion, and can be extremely tolerant and patient, but they will defend themselves with all necessary means if forced to.

      – That Russians do not go in much for American-style bragging and idle threats; instead, they tend to utter warnings and, if the warnings are ignored, to act decisively. To their credit, they are more concerned with reality than with perceptions.

      – Russia has enough military power to annihilate the UK within an hour or two. The decision whether or not to do that lies entirely and solely with the Russian government.

      – Russia also has enough conventional military power to make any “war” against the UK short and one-sided.

      – The Russians did not coin the term “Special Military Operation” for fun or laughs, as the Americans might. It has a very specific meaning, namely that it is the use of the very minimum amount of force to accomplish the goals of denazification, demilitarisation, and neutralisation. In other words, they want to stop Ukraine from being a threat to Russia with the minimum loss of life and damage to property. However NATO keeps on raising the stakes, and putting more and more of its military assets into the pot. So far Russia has just quietly accepted that policy, merely destroying all the weapons and men that NATO supplies. That will not necessarily always continue.

      – Mr Putin, who is by preference a law-abiding man of peace, has publicly stated that he learned as a boy that, if a fight is unavoidable, it is useful to strike the first blow.

      Anyone who has digested those simple facts will see immediately that the course followed by HMG (in slavish imitation of Washington and Brussels) is little short of suicidal. Apparently our masters are determined to go on provoking the bear until they get it to strike back. But we won’t like it.

      I think this cartoon, dating back to the days of Obama who arguably started the Ukraine provocation, speaks volumes to anyone with an open mind.

      • glenn_nl

        Very good points, all.

        It’s also worth remembering that Russia has a long history of very costly conflict, while we (and our puppet-master the USA) have not. We never were invaded to the extent we all felt our lives – and way of life – were in real jeopardy. We have a collective memory of everything always turning out OK in the end.

        The Russians know things might well not turn out OK in the end, and know a conflict really can be lost, or immensely damaging. They might not like it, but accept that they might have to make huge sacrifices in order to stave off the enemy, in a way we do not. I believe they are prepared to die before submitting to an outside threat, in a way we do not come close to understanding.

        • David Warriston

          The invasion point is very important. The most gung ho countries- the USA and the UK- were never invaded in either of the two world wars last century.
          In the collective memory of the UK, sacrifice is remembered as Dunkirk and the Blitz. For Russians it is Stalingrad and a lot more besides.

          • Fat Jon

            This is a very worrying, but interesting scenario.

            If the Russians were to detonate some form of destructive weapon close to the UK coast, as a warning to the slavering hawks in bunkers; how would the USA respond?

            They can’t really commence a full scale nuclear retaliation, because they have not been attacked. The UK could also not do a great deal without NATO agreement, and so would we be left simply shaking our fists at Putin?

            The UK government seems to be playing a very dangerous game. Either they have a highly intelligent plan for the worst case scenario, or they are being very very stupid.

            I know which would be my guess.

          • Tom Welsh

            “If the Russians were to detonate some form of destructive weapon close to the UK coast, as a warning to the slavering hawks in bunkers; how would the USA respond?”

            Fat Jon, that’s a very good question. Indeed, for British people it’s perhaps the only question.

            My guess is that the USA would “condemn” the attack and express profuse regret. Otherwise, nothing.

            Going a little further, I see the UK as providing a useful service (one among many) to the USA by acting as a “canary in a coal mine”. If the Russians nuke us, the Americans will know they have gone too far and might wind their necks in a little.

            Have you noticed that the most provocative acts against Russia, for some time now, have been attributed to London, not Washington? There’s a reason for that. British people are just as expendable as Ukrainians, to Washington.

          • Bayard

            “If the Russians were to detonate some form of destructive weapon close to the UK coast, as a warning to the slavering hawks in bunkers; how would the USA respond?”

            As someone, I forget who, pointed out some time ago, detonating a large nuclear bomb in international waters at the edge of British or US waters in the Atlantic, is not a “nuclear attack”, but would have very unpleasant consequences for the country concerned.

        • Tom Welsh

          “It’s also worth remembering that Russia has a long history of very costly conflict…”

          The cartoon I linked to in my last comment alludes broadly to the Mongols, Napoleon, and Hitler. To those one might add the Swedes, in the Great Northern War (1700-1721). Charles XII of Sweden led his victorious army as far as what is now North-East Ukraine, where it was decisively beaten by the Russians under Peter the Great in the Battle of Poltava. Look it up with Google Maps or the atlas of your choice: Poltava is very close to the centre of the fighting in Donbas, somewhere between Kharkov and the Dnieper.

          Russians grow up with a cultural awareness that Russia is a continental power potentially threatened by land from West, South, and East, and also by sea around most of its coasts. They remember vividly that their parents and grandparents fought to the last for the motherland, at the cost of 27 million lives. It would be hard to imagine a greater contrast with citizens of the USA and (to a slightly lesser extent) the UK, who believe they are protected by the oceans. Bad news: rather than a protective barrier, an ocean nowadays is cover under which submarines can approach to deliver deadly hypersonic missiles. Washington, New York, Los Angeles, San Diego, and London are wide open.

          • Stevie Boy

            IMO – The average American believes the ‘rest of the world’ is just another set in Hollywood, whilst the average Brit thinks America is the cultural pinnacle of the free world. If things get really bad Tom Cruise will swing in to save us all.

        • Pears Morgaine

          “It’s also worth remembering that Russia has a long history of very costly conflict…”

          Russia also has a more recent history of bullying it’s smaller neighbours: Poland, Finland, East Germany, Hungary, Czechoslovakia etc, and thought Ukraine would be another to add to the list. Kyiv in a week, the rest of country subdued inside of a month and the west unable to do anything because there wouldn’t be any body left to help.

          Hasn’t quite worked out though.

          • Crispa

            And evidence of bullying in Russia’s “more recent history” compared say to USA bullying, including of Russia itself in the 1990s and early 2000s is what?

          • Tom Welsh

            “Russia also has a more recent history of bullying it’s smaller neighbours: Poland, Finland, East Germany, Hungary, Czechoslovakia etc…”

            All of which joined more or less enthusiastically in the German invasion of the USRR in 1941. If they had won, the Nazis would have been in a position to carry out their plan of exterminating all the Slavs – presumably including the Poles, Czechs, and Slovaks.

          • Bayard

            Crispa, ah, but the USA bullies countries that aren’t its neighbours. That’s a higher class of bullying and doesn’t count.

          • pretzelattack

            the targets of US bullying are quite diverse; neighbors, countries on the other side of the planet, it’s all good. organizing a coup against the Ukrainian government in 2014 means the US bullies Russia’s neighbors too!

    • Pears Morgaine

      Well he can take comfort in not having ‘fallen’ out of a window.

      Not sure what you mean by arrested ‘again’ unless you believe Ukrainian security arrested him last year and then released him without charge a few days later. Doesn’t sound very likely does it but I hate to think Coach RedPill was pulling a cheap publicity stunt.

      Someone living in a country at war and disseminating enemy propaganda and you’re surprised he’s been arrested? What country would ever have done anything less?

      • Crispa

        USA hypocrisy at work. Make a fuss about a journalist arrested by Russia for activity that would probably breach its Espionage Act were it the other way but ignore the arrest of one of its citizens who speaks out against the stupidity of his country’s behaviour on the lost cause of Ukraine. UK behaviour over Kit Klarenberg is just as stupid and dangerous.

  • Ebenezer Scroggie

    If the Scottish people had voted in the “once in a lifetime” referendum to self-amputate and cast ourselves into the icy waters of the North Atlantic like some kind of cold water Cuba, does anyone here believe that he Scottish legal system would somehow become less corrupted than it has been under the SNP?

    Look at the profoundly corrupt prosecutions against Salmond and Murray. Would that have been any different under the SNP in an isolated and self-abandoned Scotland?

    Would the meeja somehow be liberated by such a government? I don’t think so.

    Don’t blame it on devolution either. The atrocity that was the malicious prosecution against Meghrahi and Fhimah, which involved introduction of wholly bogus “evidence” and deliberately excluded truthful evidence, occurred before the pygmy parliament was set up.

    • Tom Welsh

      My feelings exactly, Ebenezer. At such times I recall the wise words of Solzhenitsyn:

      “If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being”.

      The SF writer Frank Herbert pointed out that,

      “All governments suffer a recurring problem: [p]ower attracts pathological personalities. It is not that power corrupts but that it is magnetic to the corruptible. Such people have a tendency to become drunk on violence, a condition to which they are quickly addicted”.

      The greater the accumulation of wealth and power, the greater the attraction and the more horrible the psychopaths drawn in. That’s why Washington has the worst collection in the world, with Brussels close behind.

      The only argument for Scots independence, IMHO, is that as a relatively small, weak, and poor country Scotland would not attract such outsize psychopaths so powerfully.

      • Bayard

        “The only argument for Scots independence, IMHO, is that as a relatively small, weak, and poor country Scotland would not attract such outsize psychopaths so powerfully.”

        I don’t think size matters for those who strive to be “in control”. Cambodia was a “relatively small, weak, and poor country” and it attracted one of the worst.

  • Tatyana

    “detained and interrogated simply for holding and publishing dissident opinion on foreign policy, and in particular for supporting a more collaborative approach to Russia”
    In my opinion, it’s a special case of a deeper underlying ideology.

    The war in Ukraine has very simple and obvious reasons, and you can easily see them if you don’t make it too complicated: the people of Kiev want to force the people of Donbass and Crimea to be part of the state of Ukraine.
    The conflict is that the state of Ukraine has chosen a certain path, a certain goal and a certain national idea that is deeply unpleasant and even threatening the identity and very existence of the people of Crimea and Donbass. But this unpleasant idea is quite acceptable and even welcomed by the people of London, Paris, Berlin, Brussels and Washington, who are ready to invest wildly to carry it out.

    Actually, in an ideal world with the rule of law, the people of Crimea and Donbass would exercise their right to self-determination peacefully (and perhaps the people of Scotland or Ireland too). But the people of London, Paris, Berlin, Brussels, Washington, ridicule the very idea that a certain territory can simply notify the parent state of independence and change its status without firing a shot.
    They consider that the only criterion for changing the status is some kind of “international recognition”, which means simply that the people of London, Paris, Berlin, Brussels, Washington must give their consent.

    It’s the same old song about the master race – some people are “more civilized, more developed, more educated, more free, that’s why only their opinion matters” – just new modern arrangement of the melody. These ideology is natural for religion and monarchy, so the Pope and your new king will probably show their support for Zelensky.

    If you look keeping things simple, then you are not surprised by the twilight of freedom. History teaches that further darkness will come from which your eyes will snatch out only the light of burning books and crematorium furnaces.
    So far, there in your country they only have been detaining journalists.
    Here, on the front line of this struggle, we have already seen Yevgenia Kravchuk’s report that 11 million books in Russian language were confiscated from Ukrainian libraries and burned down.
    And yes, we also saw pro-Russian people burned alive in Odessa. Nobody has been punished, nobody is wanted by Interpol and the International Criminal Court is not issuing any warrants, and Bellingcat is powerless to identify the perpetrators (although they do not hide, but on the contrary, they proudly reported from the wide screen to the applause of the audience!).

    Darkness is such a thing, you know, you can have it anytime, just close your eyes.

  • John Main

    Worth saying that I see it as incredibly naive to claim that the UK is not at war with Russia. Russia, if the regular pronouncements of some of its senior politicians and spokespersons are to be believed, sees clearly enough that it is at war with the UK.

    I could see that the real life actions of the UK, USA and EU amounted to a state of de facto war by March 2022. I find it difficult to see how any thinking person could have reached a different conclusion.

    • glenn_nl

      Can’t say I disagree with you.

      The UK is sending powerful weapons with the specific intent that they are to be used against Russia.

      How could we complain if the Russians said, “If your missiles land on our territory, don’t be surprised if our missiles start landing on yours.”

      • Fat Jon

        How could we complain if the Russians said, “If your missiles land on our territory, don’t be surprised if our missiles start landing on yours.”

        How would we know if the Russians threatened that? Indeed they may already have done, and we are calling their bluff. Certainly, if they did say anything of that nature, the UK Establishment and MSM would not report it. Better to wait for the missiles to land and then react with total surprise and astonishment, at the poor innocent UK being attacked out of the blue without having lifted a military finger directly against the Russians. Just think of the propaganda victory we could achieve. I bet our security forces chiefs already have.

    • Tatyana

      You’re right, John Main.
      Here are the words of Medvedev:

      “The UK’s Foreign Secretary Cleverly has stated that Ukraine “has the legitimate right to…project force beyond its borders to undermine Russia’s ability to project force into Ukraine itself.” According to him, legitimate military targets beyond Ukraine’s border are part of its self-defence.
      The goofy officials of the UK, our eternal enemy, should remember that within the framework of the universally accepted international law which regulates modern warfare, including the Hague and Geneva Conventions with their additional protocols, their state can also be qualified as being at war.
      Today, the UK acts as Ukraine’s ally providing it with military aid in the form of equipment and specialists, i.e., de facto is leading an undeclared war against Russia. That being the case, any of its public officials (either military, or civil, who facilitate the war) can be considered as a legitimate military target.”

      It was posted on Twitter, screenshotted here
      That’s how Medvedev commented the words of Foreign Secretary James Cleverly re. drone attack in Moscow.

      In order not to sound racist, Mr. Cleverly will have to admit that Russia also has the same right to use force beyond its borders to ensure its security, right? And I think Mr. Cleverly is probably clever enough to understand that NATO in Ukraine threatens Russia.
      If Mr. Cleverly is going to deny this threat, then he is a fool. And if he is going to recognize Ukraine’s right to security and deny such a right to Russia, then he is a racist. Choose what you like best.

      • Tom Welsh

        “If Mr. Cleverly is going to deny this threat, then he is a fool. And if he is going to recognize Ukraine’s right to security and deny such a right to Russia, then he is a racist. Choose what you like best”.

        Of course, he might be a fool and a racist. The two often go together.

      • John Main

        “You’re right John Main”

        Well, well, not often I read that.

        However, anybody accepting I am right can accept that our host is partially incorrect when he writes that it is unacceptable for journalists to be detained for questioning.

        There’s a war on, whether declared or not. Different rules apply in wartime.

        Note that I am neither condoning nor condemning this. I am making a statement of fact.

      • John Main

        Certainly racist to state that Russia has no right to exist, that Russians are not a real nationality or people and that there is no such thing as Russian culture.

        Phew! As nobody is saying these things, the claim of anti-Russian racism can be binned. And the people making that claim can be ignored.

        Haud oan though! Who was it said all of these same things about Ukraine?

    • Tom Welsh

      As I have observed before, it’s interesting and instructive to look up how long it has been since the UK, the USA, or any NATO country declared war on anyone. The practice has gone right out of fashion. As far as I know, no one declared war against North Korea, Vietnam, Yugoslavia, Yemen, Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Venezuela, or any of the other nations against which “the West” has waged merciless war. In the case of Palestine, it was completely evaporated without ever being recognised as a state.

      So it would be either very naive or very cynical to take much notice of the fact that the UK has not formally declared war on Russia. If a victim of Western aggression were to wait for a declaration of war before defending itself, it would end as a smoking ruin. Which, indeed, many have.

  • nevermind

    The Uk has sold of many of its bunkers and there is no care or ideas on how people would fare in a full-scale exchange.
    Thanks for Tatyana’s thoughful reply on a simple solution to the conflict Ukraine was bounced into carrying out.
    The UK and EU are at war by providing arms and training, as well as providing drones delivery systems.
    Thanks to liar, Bojo and Truss, Zelenski broke off what was a promising start to peace negotiations, so by our own ex-PM’s actions we have shown that we want war.

    • Tatyana

      Nevermind, you say “we want war”, it sounds a bit incomplete, like an unfinished thought. Imagination draws some evil people who just love to kill. A reasonable person understands that this picture is grotesque and doesn’t fully correspond to reality.

      I will offer my reasoning.
      War is a way to achieve a goal. In the situation in Ukraine, imo, the goal is territories. “You” want these territories for yourself, either directly or indirectly through the loyal Ukrainian government. “You” want to use these territories to station your weapons, “you” want to use the ports for your ships.
      This goal is hindered by people living in these territories. The only way to get rid of these people is through war.

      There are many confirmations of this thought of mine, because NATO began to develop Ukrainian territory long before the war, including investments in the Ukrainian military complex, re-equipment of Ukrainian ports to NATO standards, and the like. If Ukraine were to join NATO, then the pro-Russian populace would inevitably have to be exterminated, because NATO can’t sit in a territory full of pro-Russian would-be spies, can it? I think that this is the condition that was put before the government of Ukraine – they will be accepted into the alliance when their territory is “safe” for the military secrets of the alliance. Territories cleared of Russians, that’s what “you” want.

      Look, for example, at China’s peace initiative
      and cynic comments explaining why this is unacceptable
      “U.S. officials remain wary of any calls for an immediate cease-fire or peace talks, especially those coming from China.”
      “Some European officials meeting with Mr. Qin have expressed skepticism.”
      “Mr. Blinken … with James Cleverly … the Ukrainians have “what they need to continue to be successful in regaining territory that was seized by force by Russia over the last 14 months.”
      “Like Mr. Blinken, Mr. Cleverly did not mention diplomacy with Russia at all, instead focusing on military aid: “We need to continue to support them, irrespective of whether this forthcoming offensive generates huge gains on the battlefield, because until this conflict is resolved and resolved properly, it is not over.”
      You see? No peace talks, scepticism, regain territory, until the conflict resolved properly.

      Or, Indonesian Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto recently proposed a peace plan. There were points that were once voiced by our host – to hold referendums in the “territories” under the control of the UN.
      Video #3 at this page, the speech starts at about 15:20
      The press secretary of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry, in response to this initiative, commented that Ukraine must restore its territorial integrity within internationally recognized borders.
      You see? All the same speech about territories, not about people. Oh yes, a verbatim quote:
      “We appreciate the attention that Indonesia pays to the issue of restoring peace in Ukraine. At the same time, there are no disputed territories between Ukraine and the Russian Federation for holding a referendum there.”

      That is, the position is such that the ownership of these territories should be decided by some “international recognizers”. Between the lines, it reads that people living in these territories don’t have the right to decide their fate, because, you know, they are Russians.

      • Twirlip

        “There were points that were once voiced by our host – to hold referendums in the “territories” under the control of the UN.”

        I find it hard to keep up – with news and opinion on Ukraine generally, or even with blog posts on the subject here – so I’m starting to make a list of the latter (it’s not complete):

        Ukraine: Where to Find the Truth in Enormous Detail [Sun 20 Feb 2022]

        Ukraine: How Can the War End? [Sat 26 Feb 2022]

        Striving to Make Sense of the Ukraine War [Mon 4 Apr 2022]

        What Might A Ukraine Peace Agreement Look Like? [Fri 13 May 2022]

        Diplomacy Is Always an Option [Fri 23 Sep 2022]

        I can’t find a reference by Craig to the idea of referenda controlled by the UN. That doesn’t mean there isn’t such a reference somewhere. But the only reference by Craig to the idea of referenda in general that I found was this, in the September 23 article:

        “Putin’s reaction appears to be escalation. The conscription is a huge statement internally which probably does make major military reverse not politically survivable, even for Putin. The proposed referenda in occupied districts also make any backtracking very problematic.

        No reasonable person can believe that a time of war and military administration can be adequate conditions for a referendum vote. The situation now is even more extreme than when the Crimea “referendum” was held in 2014. No doubt we would see similarly risible 97% referenda results now. In real life, in a genuinely free vote you would not get 97% on a referendum for free ice cream. Yulia Timoshenko won about 18% of the vote in Crimea in the Ukrainian presidential election of 2010, on a stridently Ukrainian nationalist and pro-western platform.”

        But there was much discussion of the topic in the 3 pages of comments.

        • Tatyana

          I cannot say exactly where was it, perhaps in the comments section. What I remember is the sense – Mr. Murray said that he wouldn’t mind if a new referendum was held but all made in accordance with the rules, with international observers and whatever is needed for a referendum to be recognized as a legitimate. That made me think that Mr. Murray doesn’t deny people of their right to say their opinion, he simply doesn’t belive a referendum may be legal if it took place in a war zone. That is how I understood Mr. Murray’s idea and I agree as to legality, as an abstract idea. At the same time I thought to myself that people in a war zone care of legality less than they care of being safe, hoping to find a protection from the side they choose.

      • Pears Morgaine

        ” If Ukraine were to join NATO, then the pro-Russian populace would inevitably have to be exterminated ”

        Utter rubbish. Who’s feeding you this stuff? Some 13,000 Russians live in Poland and Finland has 30,000 with 70,000 who have Russian as their first language. Russian emigration to Finland has increased since the war began and continued despite the country’s accession to NATO.

        • Tatyana

          Zelenski feeds me this stuff 🙂
          Have you seen the smartest joke he made recently? His office edited the video of the meeting with Lindsey Graham, so that Zelenski says: “Russians are dying” and if Mr. Graham replies: “the best money we’ve ever spent”

          Pears, you cannot convince me. I’ve seen them Ukrainians long before the war started, visited their pages on social media and even tracked one pretty Ukrainian girl collecting money as if for charity and then donating it to military, to kill Russians in Donbass. That pretty girl lives in London and works in a respectable company. I’m sure her boss has never seen THAT photos of pretty Ukrainian girl posing for the camera dressed in a вышиванка traditional embroidered shirt and a white cap of the ku klux clan. I think her boss is not interested in why such photos were posted, what is the meaning of the caption under this, and how many Ukrainians clicked the “like” button.

        • Tatyana

          Pears? You won’t ask for proofs?
          It’s a pity. I just unpacked the archive with screenshots, I thought that you would probably ask me to confirm my words and also I just wanted to make sure I didn’t dream it up.

      • nevermind

        Hi Tatyana, sorry to leave it so late to explain my short post. I appreciate your insight from Russia and the solutions we willfully ignored, nobody explained to us what the the US had planned and prepared for a long time. Those few who are better informed, who have been following the cold war and the make believe softening of NATO’s stance during the 1990, knew that Russia under Yeltsin was weak, leading to Oligarchs helping themselves to the Bears honey, whilst banking in the west and using their money to undermine an outdated political system, just as Israel has done.

        By saying ‘we want war’, I meant the small minority that supports and furthers the CISIS club that envelopes the Military Industrial Complex, the arms dealers and those who make the policies that keep them employed and America on their hegemony course to control and conquer the last few resources of other countries, by any means. The ludicrous idea to buy Greenland from Denmark, without considering what the indigenous people of Greenland think about such horse trading, can only be described as ‘Bonkers’. It’s a mindset that wants to take control, regardless of the consequences.

        The people in the west are kept in the dark, if you go on to the streets and asked people whether they knew/believe that we are at war, you would get empty faces, consternation and surprise, all informed by the BBC and tabloid newspapers belonging to right-wing proprietors. Fed on propaganda they ignore the Minsk agreements, divert attention to alleged atrocities, collecting ‘war crime’ incidents assessed by taking a biased look that is justified by some insider specialist, not necessarily by facts on the ground.

        That journalist and bloggers with a social conscience are questioned at the border and are interrogated, have their electronic devices scanned for material likely to fall under the new prescriptive policies the Conservative Government designed to clampdown on any sort of dissent that questions their actions, is a step back into the 1930s, desperation to exclude us, the people, from reality and facts as they are.
        And the political new Labour opposition supports these regressive measures, indeed their refusal to condemn these policies amounts to cheerleading them on.

        Still our western media is not talking of a ceasefire and or peace negotiations. A daunting future awaits us all if there are no resolute actions to support the Chinese or Indonesian attempts to start talking seriously.
        I wish your family well and hope that this madness will soon stop. Take care.

    • Lapsed Agnostic

      Re: ‘The Uk has sold of many of its bunkers and there is no care or ideas on how people would fare in a full-scale exchange.’

      Outside Central London, the UK had hardly any nuclear bunkers to begin with, nevermind – which, of course, has been a direct dereliction of duty by its governments going back decades. As I may have mentioned before on other threads, I have some ideas about how we would fare in a full-scale exchange between NATO & Russia: 90-95% of the population would be dead within a year.

    • Tom Welsh

      “…by our own ex-PM’s actions we have shown that we want war”.

      May I suggest a slight semantic adjustment that might well eliminate the need for many of the comments in this thread?

      Stop writing about “our ex-PM” and, in general identifying with the UK government’s murderous, illegal, and foolish acts.

      Most of us – probably all of us, actually – are entirely unable even to influence HMG, let alone exert any control over it. But by using the words “we” and “our”, one accepts the lie that HMG in some way represents us as British citizens.

      Speaking for myself, I reject almost everything that the London government does: the “Covid” con, the “global warming” con, the endless lies about Russia, China, Iran, and other designated adversaries. So I find it more honest and accurate to refer to those people as “them”.

  • Harry Law

    Biden at the recent air force ceremony said “Remember what was said.. “Putin was certain that NATO would crack, that they would not stand together” Give it time Joe, committees are notorious for not standing together, As for standing together he immediately fell flat on his face. [no don’t laugh] an omen for NATO methinks.

  • Tina

    21st Century PEACE that should have been…
    BUT for pro-WAR U$ War-Criminals ($TAGING 911/Fratricide Mass Murdering thousands of their own people, then ILLEGALLY invading Iraq, Afghanistan & the Middle-East endangering and sacrificing their own troops Mass Murdering millions more innocents) while HYPOCRITICALLY calling pro-NATO Putin ‘a threat’, and now want HIM arrested?!
    In September 2022, during the 7th month of the Ukraine War, interviewed by Channel 4 about his nine meetings with Vladimir Putin, ex-NATO Head Robertson said, “At the first meeting (in Moscow, Oct 2001) Vladimir Putin clearly said, ‘I WANT RUSSIA TO BE PART OF WESTERN EUROPE…at the 2nd meeting (in Brussels) he said..’WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO INVITE RUSSIA TO (apply to) JOIN NATO?’…I started to sort of reach out and engage them in so many activities that they basically couldn’t fight with us.. but after I left NATO (in Dec 2003), the American administration, the Bush administration (DURING THEIR OWN ILLEGAL WAR ON IRAQ opposed by Putin), lost any interest basically in doing business with Russia, they saw it as a threat..they didn’t really want to make it part of the overall partnership (for Peace). I think we missed an opportunity at that time because I think it’s what he (Putin) wanted, and we could have grabbed hold of him!”
    Feb 2022, quote formerly pro-NATO Putin rightly stating before wrongly invading, “De-Nazify Ukraine.”…/7fff0ba1-bfda-4970…/
    And, the WORLD’S WORST WAR-CRIMINALS U$A killing millions (including pregnant women/unborn babies, infants, children, the defenceless elderly and disabled in their own lands) – don’t recognize the INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT!
    Wasting TRILLIONS in much needed public money diverted to PROFIT the unelected Military Industrial Complex endangering and sacrificing his own U.S. Troops and millions of innocents “GEORGE W. BUSH, WAR CRIMINAL? The Bush Administration’s Liability for 269 War Crimes” – by Professor Michael Haas.
    Eminent jurists, professional legal organizations, and human rights monitors in this country and around the world have declared that President George W. Bush may be prosecuted as a war criminal for his overt and systematic violations of such international law as the Geneva and Hague Conventions and such US law as the War Crimes Act, the Anti-Torture Act, and federal assault laws.
    Professor Michael Haas identifies and documents 269 specific war crimes under US and international law for which President Bush, senior officials and staff in his administration, and military officers under his command are liable to be prosecuted.
    Professor Haas divides the 269 war crimes of the Bush administration into four classes: 6 war crimes committed in launching a war of aggression; 36 war crimes committed in the conduct of war; 175 war crimes committed in the treatment of prisoners; and 52 war crimes committed in postwar occupations.
    For each of the 269 war crimes of the Bush administration, Professor Haas gives chapter and verse in precise but non-technical language, including the specific acts deemed to be war crimes, the names of the officials deemed to be war criminals, and the exact language of the international or domestic laws violated by those officials. The author proceeds to consider the various US, international, and foreign tribunals in which the war crimes of Bush administration defendants may be tried under applicable bodies of law. He evaluates the real-world practicability of bringing cases against Bush and Bush officials in each of the possible venues.
    Finally, Professor Hass weighs the legal, political, and humanitarian pros and cons of actually bringing Bush and Bush officials to trial for war crimes.

    • Crispa

      Continuing the theme of ex-NATO head Robertson, USA thought Putin, when first elected as Yeltsin’s chosen successor, was in its bag and would be a willing partner in spreading its neoliberalism, giving its multicorps effective control of the Russian economy.
      Had the potential partnership between Russia and USA been one based on multipolarity, and not on unipolarity aimed at making Russia a USA lackey, I am sure it would have developed quite successfully. Putin, adversely influenced by the invasion of Iraq, USA’s role in creating “orange revolutions” to install USA puppet governments, which then became evident in Egypt and Syria, saw through USA’s deceptive intentions and changed course much to USA chagrin and of its minions like the EU and UK. Ukraine is simply a development of that process.

    • Anthony

      Mainstream British journalists are there to legitimate the unified political class and its move towards fascism. They love to go on about how their job is to ‘speak truth to power’ but as soon as any real journalist or rogue public figure actually does that it’s a different story. We saw it in their reaction to Craig’s reporting of the Salmond conspiracy and trial. We saw it in their reactions to Jeremy Corbyn and Roger Waters. We see it every single time.

      • Fat Jon

        Don’t worry folks, tomorrow (June 6th) Prince Harry will be in court to argue his phone hacking case against the scum tabloid newspapers and their corrupt police parasites.

        The MSM will be full of it 24/7; and what better time to agree to donate Ukraine with all manner of UK military “boys toys” without the public noticing?

        Just keep an eye out for unusual activity at RAF bases….

        • Tom Welsh

          “Just keep an eye out for unusual activity at RAF bases….”

          I have been doing that, for some time now. Every time HMG carries out yet another outrageously provocatiove, illegal, and dangerous act, I wait and wonder if an RAF base or some other place will witness what the Russians call “an arrival”.

          • John Main

            Care to list these outrageously provocative, illegal and dangerous acts?

            Care to clarify who is outraged, provoked, or placed in danger, and what laws are broken to make these acts illegal?

            I think we need to know if there is any substance behind your hyperbole.

  • Harry Law

    Robert F. Kennedy sounds like a good contender for the Democrats, here is is telling the truth. which escapes the US administration and its NATO vassals.

    “And Ukraine today is a victim of U.S. aggression… because our government has admitted, President Biden has admitted that this, the old neocon asperation, this war is about getting rid of Putin, and [Biden’s] Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin acknowledged in April 2022 that… the U.S. purpose of engaging this war is to exhaust and degrade the Russian army so they’re incapable of fighting anywhere else in the world. So that is our objective in this war. And it is a proxy war that is using the bodies of the flower of Ukrainian youth, putting them into an abattoir where they are being mercilessly killed.”

    They aren’t even admitting this, the Pentagon isn’t admitting this. The Ukrainian government doesn’t admit it. They have lost over 300,000 Ukrainian soldiers. Ukrainians are trying to leave Ukraine, and it is now illegal to leave Ukraine if you[‘re below 55 years of age and male.
    And they’ve killed 14,000 civilians, there’s 60% unemployment, the infrastructure of the county has been destroyed for U.S. geopolitical machinations. And it is just not right. -RealClear Politics

    • U Watt

      He clarified who he is with his abandonment of Roger Waters: not genuine and a coward. A first-class option did announce yesterday however in Cornel West.

  • Alan

    The left call it fascism and the right call it communism. Whilst the right are closer to the truth of it they are both correct and wrong.
    What’s coming is a health and technology authoritarianism dictatorship from political classes and supra national bodies.

    Left and right need to band together and first and foremost fight for the most basic necessity, freedom.

  • Harry Law

    This is a must see video from top US army man Colonel Douglas Macgregor, in it he says that Ukraine will be destroyed and that hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian troops will be killed. He states that the US led NATO policy is to defeat Russia and that Mr Putin must be replaced, many others envisage and advocate the dissolution of Russia. This is delusional, 1/ The vast majority of people and the government back Mr Putin, they even think he is not being tough enough. Col Macgregor worries that when the inevitable happens and Russia nears victory Many knuckle dragging idiots in US politics will demand something must be done. ANYTHING. I’m looking at you Lindsey Graham. This war is existential for Russia, the Russians know that and will not be beaten

  • Jeremy Dawson

    The report on Kit Klarenberg’s detention and questioning said they took his electronic devices and demanded passwords and the like.

    It needs to be made clear that this sort of thing is useless against terrorists, or anyone else with material that really needs to be kept secret, if they take proper advice, and put up with the effort and inconvenience required. It’s useful only against people that aren’t prepared for it (such as, of course, these journalists).

  • AG

    offers a quick look at the US “frontline” of environmental protesters facing anti-terrorist methods.

    A FAIR Interview

    May 26, 2023
    ‘Charging Domestic Terrorism Is Intended to Make the Cost of Protesting Too High’

    CounterSpin interview with Cody Bloomfield on anti-activist terrorist charges

    by Janine Jackson

    JJ: Absolutely, and we should note that the harms don’t necessarily have to come from law enforcement or in the form of prison. We have seen people coming back from protests being, for example, kicked out of school. So this is something that is hovering over them, even if they don’t wind up in prison.

    CB: Yeah, and recently we’ve heard reports of a loss of access to financial institutions for some of the defendants. So far we’ve heard that Chase Bank, Bank of America, Venmo and US Bank have withheld access to banking for certain domestic terrorism defendants. Also a few people had Airbnb accounts closed. As you mentioned, there was the law student who was unable to return to school. So these charges, even though they have not seen their day in court, have not been proven in court, are already having detrimental effects on the activists.

    I find it interesting that Russian actions counter civil freedoms are all over Geman press.
    But you don´t hear a peep about what is going on with things described above.

    (This also is true for the ongoing US right-wing propaganda and legal skirmishes against minority rights. Remember SCOTUS ruling on Roe vs. Wade freedoms? Like never happened. Not to mention issues like capital punishment, not in Russia but to be found in the benign and highly cultured US and Japan. Noone seemed to care about the protesters in Iran being executed either. Horrific. But again, scarce coverage. Wonder why.)

  • Courtenay Francis Raymond Barnett


    You, at first glance, may think that my observations below are off topic. More to the point, the moderator may even share your point of view. Both of you would be wrong, Why so?

    Well consider for a moment that Trump is the lead contender for the Republicans and could very well be the nominee. That said he would be one step closer to the US presidency. Now, if he did win – then help us all. He being the leader of the West would mean that he is once more able to wreak havoc across the world and second time round he shall be far more resolute than first time round and we shall all be affected.

    So, albeit I sent this to my girlfriend who is an American – just for laughs – there is a serious side and implications to what I say. Read on:-

    Having watched the news and consistently seen former President Donald Trump featuring, I woke up this morning in a reflective frame of mind. I asked myself – who in my lifetime was the most problem stricken and/or incompetent and/or simply dumb President the US has had. I decided that a gold medal – a silver medal – and a bronze medal could be assigned to the ‘successful’ candidate.

    First, President Nixon sprung to mind. However, on reflection I changed my mind because he faced serious legal problems then he resigned. Simple enough.

    Next, in the dumb category Gerald Ford came it mind. It was said of him that he must have taken too many blows to the head for reason of not wearing a helmet during the days he played American football.

    Next, I thought of George Bush Jr. but he did not qualify for when you are dumb and acknowledge and know that you are dumb then that will not qualify you for a medal versus a person who is but does not recognize that he is.

    So who?

    Finally, I thought of Donald Trump – same one – the one and only Donald Trump. But, I refused simply to hand out any medal unless he was first found to be truly deserving. So, I started a check list and then outlined ( not in any chronological sequence) the points of merit for Trump.

    E. Jean Carroll

    Well, for years a lady said that Trump had raped her. Finally she took the allegation to court and Trump kept making denials. Eventually, the jury decided in her favour and awarded US$5m against Trump.

    Well – how dumb can you be in relying on a defence of denial but you do not actually go to court and make the denial in your defence?

    Anyway, the jury already had evidence to hold on to – separate and apart from what the lady directly told them from the witness box. Trump had said that a man should just grab ‘em by the P……. So, they concluded that was just what he did to the lady.

    Tax returns

    Not myself an expert in the US Presidency nor a Presidential historian, nevertheless I think that I am accurate in saying that all Presidents before Trump made financial disclosures and declarations of their financial status at time of taking office – inclusive of IRS disclosures.

    Well,Trump applies his own law to himself and refuses to make the necessary disclosure. So, the court compels the disclosure.

    But, the frying pan leads into the fire. The low ending of the IRS returns to pay minimum taxes and the high ending of the value of the same collateral ( buildings/properties) raises the spectre of fraudulent declarations.

    Now, the prosecutor is after Trump and there are huge further implications beyond having already been convicted on one aspect of the tax issue.

    Election issues

    Trump, having tried to be re-elected and failed is not satisfied so decides to make more problems for himself.

    Trump claims that the election was stolen and takes his allegation(s) to court in the most dramatic way. The night before the first case Giuliani announces on CNN that he is going to court in the morning to prove the fraud. Giuliani is asked by the Judge as the first question whether the case is an election fraud allegation case. Giuliani promptly answers ‘no’. Why did he do so? As a lawyer he knows that if he brings a case which is ‘frivolous and/or vexatious’ then he can be cited for contempt with further implications of imprisonment – so he plays safe. Case dismissed. And so too are a total of about 60 election cases brought to establish election fraud.

    To make matters worse, Trump had alleged that the voting machines were the mechanical vehicle used to effect the fraud. Well, the main election machine company sues and wins in a significant amount for the false allegation made. In fact settlement was made to avoid significantly more damages and costs at the end if a trial had followed through to conclusion.

    Now, that was really smart – wasn’t it?

    Just find the votes

    So, on one hand Trump claimed that votes were stolen/lost from him; on the other hand Trump wanted the Governor of Georgia to find just 11,000 plus more votes to win the election.

    Then, in attempting to have that fraud effected Trump finds himself in trouble with the law.

    My, my, this guy Donald Trump must be super smart.

    Retention of classified government documents

    Trump, if not anything else is unique.

    All other Presidents at end of term have returned the government’s classified documents. Trump is different because he can just classify and declassify by just thinking about it – and that is what he actually said. Gee – a magician accompanied by all his other proven accomplishments.

    A contempt, fine if not other legal charges seem to be the end game. Quite impressive.

    What next….?

    At this stage I think that I have enough facts to award the medals.

    Most problem stricken – Donald Trump – Gold

    Incompetent – Donald Trump – Silver

    Dumb President – Donald Trump – Bronze

    If I have been inaccurate and/or unfair in any way – please promptly inform why so.

    • Bayard

      I don’t live in the USA, so I would award a platinum medal:
      Least warlike – Donald Trump
      So as far as I am concerned, he can be the stupidest, most incompetent and most problem stricken president, but, since he is the least warlike this century, he’s the best.

        • Bayard

          Yeah, yeah! I was going by my own observations, not what he or his supporters claimed. The fact is, that he didn’t start any wars and showed a willingness to talk to other rulers long since considered enemies by the USA. That he didn’t manage to fully rein in the MIC in its endless quest to justify it’s own, very expensive, existence, is hardly surprising, even US presidents don’t have that sort of power or influence. Nor is it surprising that his opponents would use his record on the mater to attack him. This is US politics, after all.

  • mark cutts

    It seems that the price of freedom is to accept your self fiitted chains as in the end it is better for your own good,

    Not being flippant here but it is the Western equivalent of Terry Waite and John McCarthy buying their own radiators and chaining themselves to them.

    Proof M’ lud?

    A Tory majority of 80 at the last GE.

    There is a Marxist Economist called Michael Hudson (I recommend watching him on Youtube) who says that anyone who doesn’t agree with the introduction or the facilitation of neo-liberal economics in their respective countries has to die according to its followers.

    I don’t think he was joking as the initail experiment of this ideology – Pinochet in Chile – used to shoot his Junta’s opponents in big numbers in football stadiums.

    Ironically after the experiment was over, the Chilean economy was in such a bad state that Pinochet nationalised three times as many companies as Allende could have dreamed of, to regain some growth.

    p.s. Hudson’s Godfather was none other than Leon Trotsky.

    • Tom Welsh

      Just in case anyone hasn’t heard of Michael Hudson, for my money [sic] he is not only the best economist in the world, but one of a tiny number who are honest. His blog and his many books explain his ideas with amazing simplicity and straightforwardness – so utterly different from the complicated mare’s nest of obfuscation woven by most establishment economists.

      To call Dr Hudson a Marxist is perfectly true, but might be misleading if you have been deceived by the Western establishment’s vicious caricature of Marxism and Marxists. As he explains, his approach takes economics back to the classical school of the 18th century – Adam Smith and his colleagues.

      One of Dr Hudson’s main ideas is that conventional thinking on debt is hopelessly wrong. Debt usually accumulates, thanks to the miracle of compound interest, (much) faster than real wealth can grow to pay it. Thus the rich who can lend out their money use it as a sprat to catch a mackerel, hoping (and often managing) to foreclose on their debtors’ property when they fail to pay. Unfortunately this eventually leads to a state of affairs in which the rich creditors have all the money and property, leaving nothing for others. A reasonable end to a game of Monopoly, but less attractive in real life.

      • mark cutts

        Tom Welsh,

        Michael Hudson is one of the few people around who has read all three volumes of Capital whereas I struggle to read one. He describes himself as a Marxist Economist (that is not an insult it, is to his credit) and is described as a Marxist Economist. From what I know he studies Antiquity and is a collecter of old artifacts. A very well read man and as you say a very good explainer of economics and geopolitics.

        He has a podcast on Youtube alongside an Indian Communist which is always good to watch. You constantly learn something watching these podcasts.

        You learn nothing from the BBC who are still scratching their heads as to whether Johnson is liar or not.

  • Niall McLaren

    You may be aware of a long and tortuous case which settled in Australia last week. Newspapers had reported that the “hero” of Australia’s (illegal) wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, fmr SAS CPL Ben Roberts=Smith VC had committed murders and other war crimes in Afghanistan. Backed by a billionaire media baron, Roberts-Smith sued the papers and TV stations who had aired the news – and lost. The 726 page judgement delivered 2 days ago was damning of him, and of the military and their cover-up and reasserted the right of freedom of the press. Reporters were jubilant, although none so far have recalled that Julian Assange rots in Belmarsh Prison for doing exactly as they did, exposing war crimes. Please write to the Australian High Commissioner, Hon Stephen Smith, fmr Min for Defence and for Foreign Affairs, in London pointing out this small fact.

  • Once again

    There is indeed much troubling legislation in process at Westminster – not just the detail of the draft bills themselves but the authoritarian mindset behind it. Perhaps a blow against such manoeuvres could be struck by this site finally publishing (as promised in February) the e-mails of Stewart McDonald. Is there some reason for the radio silence since then?

    • mods-cm-org

      Thank you for your continuing interest, ‘Once again’ (formerly ‘What’s happening with Stewart McDonald’s emails’, ‘Cannae Mind/Canny Mind’, and others).

      Craig has stated on Twitter several times that scrutiny of the hacked emails showed they contained little of interest or import, as Stewart McDonald wasn’t part of Nicola Sturgeon’s inner circle. Sorry to disappoint you.

      • Once again - answered

        Thank you for your attention and reply, mods-cm-org. An update at last is very welcome. Contrary to my usual view, perhaps there is sometimes something interesting on Twitter (I don’t have an account). I would argue that the helpful and obvious place for our host to have announced these findings would have been on this blog where he wrote two posts (10th and 13th February) on the subject rather than elsewhere, but that is his choice. It is perhaps unfortunate that Craig posted (10th Feb) “There is much of interest in the cache, including emails direct to and from Nicola Sturgeon, showing the toxic relationships within the SNP group at Westminster, where McDonald regards himself as in a very small minority of Sturgeon loyalists” and then came to the view that there is in fact little of interest and McDonald isn’t part of Team Nicola after all, but none of us can be right all the time.
        At least now we have an answer here, albeit in a place unrelated to the original conversation, and the comforting implication that Stewart McDonald MP knows little of any significance.

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