RF Sitrep 20151119


PARIS. The usual “solidarity” theatre. None of this means a thing and won’t until we start to hear about the role of Wahhabism in all this, where it comes from and who spreads it; Daesh’s Turkey supply route; that Washington and its allies cannot support jihadists in one place and expect to control them in another; that US neocons and “humanitarian interventionists” have produced a catastrophe; that Assad is an ally; that Iran is an ally; that Putin is not only an ally but knows what to do; that NATO is wasting its time “protecting” the Baltics from Russia and should either start really dealing with its members’ security or give up. That will require an unprecedented amount of truth-telling. Danielle Ryan speculates on changes in the spin machine.

BUT MAYBE WE ARE HEARING… The CIA man who helped start it all reflects that Western intervention made it worse. A retired British general dares to say “Wahhabi”. A former CIA deputy director thinks it’s time to team up with Assad. Even the WaPo starts to get it – US-supplied missile destroys a US-supplied Humvee. Meanwhile, Russia’s initiative gains support in Vienna.

PUTIN (ONCE AGAIN) EXPLAINS HIS POSITION. Take seven minutes and watch this video from about a year ago. And ask yourself: does this sound right or wrong? If you think it wrong, see Joe Biden agree with him: “[Our allies] poured hundreds of millions of dollars and tens, thousands of tons of weapons into anyone who would fight against Assad except that the people who were being supplied were Al Nusra and Al Qaeda and the extremist elements of jihadis coming from other parts of the world.” (Text)

SYRIA. Obviously much is happening and the situation is very fluid. Russia stepped up operations against Daesh (the airliner was brought down by a bomb), targeting the oil business – videos of hits on storage tanks and trucks. Oil is a major source of Daesh funds; the US claims at last to be targeting it. (How could it not have seen those lines of trucks? But the US effort had been rather half-hearted.) Long-range aviation seems to be hitting infrastructure while (more) aircraft based in Syria concentrate on close air support to the Syrian Army (progressing). The big question is this: it is clear to the objective viewer that Russia is leading the attack; will Paris sign up with Moscow? Ideas that France “lead” the attacks are absurd: only Russia and the USA have “full service” militaries. Hollande is close to it: “In the next few days, I will therefore meet with President Obama and President Putin to unite our forces and to achieve a result which, at this point, has been put off for far too long.” There’s an opportunity because France is sending its carrier to the Med and Putin told the Navy to coordinate efforts with it. The two military heads have talked. Gilbert Doctorow, an astute observer, expects cooperation – there’s huge popular support in France for it. Obama himself has taken a baby step towards the Putin position which was, again, upheld at Vienna. In short, Assad is not the problem, Daesh is. Even – even! – Clinton gets it.

REFUGEES. Syria’s UN Ambassador says about a million refugees have returned since the Russian strikes, and associated Syrian army victories, began. A million? Well, anyway, it’s clear that the solution to the European refugee/migrant problem is make the countries they came from worth living in again. More truth-telling will be required here: as I said before, the refugees come from places NATO “saved”.

MESSING WITH THEIR MINDS. Russian TV “accidentally” showed a frightening Russian weapon. Or maybe it’s just a piece of paper. The US will probably wind up spending billions and billions.

ECONOMY. More evidence that the Russian economy is turning around from Bloomberg.

ISOLATED PUTIN. The RI Humour Editor permits herself a small smile. Reality and polite diplomacy proves a powerful combination against fantasy and bluster.

SPORTS DOPING. Yes, no, maybe. But I am always suspicious when another anti-Russia campaign starts.

WHO’S IN CHARGE? 50 analysts from the US Defense Intelligence Agency have claimed their reports were manipulated to give “a more positive picture to the White House”. The former DIA head says warnings were ignored. “Shellback” argues that the US int establishment does not support what the US Administration is doing. Are these catastrophes the work of amateurs and ignoramuses?

MH17. Remember that? Some Dutch media companies are suing the government to try and get more information. (In Dutch). By the way, US satellites detected the explosion of the Russian airliner, so what did they see with MH17 and why are we still not told what it was? You know why.

© Patrick Armstrong Analysis, Ottawa, Canada Websites: ROPV, US-Russia, Russia Insider

Toss Your MSM Subscriptions and Buy The Saker’s Book: You’ll save money and learn more




The Essential Saker (ISBN 978-1608880584) is available at Amazon.com (print and ebook).

Additional information at http://www.nimblebooks.com/index.php/saker.html

and http://www.nimblebooks.com/index.php/where-to-find-nimble-books.

Like thousands of others, I discovered The Saker early on in the Ukraine disaster and quickly added his site to my list of essential reading. His writing is an example of the finest that can be found on the Internet and and an illustration of just how important that resource is. Formerly working for some Western security organisation, he was sickened by the parade of wars and regime changes unanimously promoted by the Main Stream Media as a response to some atrocity later revealed to have been exaggerated if not entirely faked. For a long time he felt alone – a “submarine in a desert” – and it has only been with the explosion of readership that he has realised that there are many other beached submarines. The Internet is very liberating this way – no matter how much the monovoice of the MSM shouts you down with Party Line infomercials – you are not alone. As a small illustration, I invite the reader to Google images of “democracy freedom“: a lot of “submarines” know they are being lied to. The Saker is one of the forces leading dissident thinkers out of their isolation. And he understands what keeps us unpaid writers going: “So yes, knowing the truth does make one free, and the truth is the most powerful empire-buster ever invented. It brought down the USSR and it will bring down the AngloZionists too. It is just a matter of time now.”

One of the things that jarred me when I first began reading The Saker was his use of the phrase “AngloZionist”. Oh oh, I thought: what have we here? The Elders of Zion marry the Masons and bring forth lizardoids? Other people had a similar difficulty and, eventually, he wrote an essay explaining what he meant by the phrase. (Part IV) I think he means “exceptionalism”; the sort of belief that, on the one side there are ordinary, unexceptional states, and on the other, there are the pure, the exceptional. A perfect example of completely uncritical rah-rah exceptionalism may be found in this piece by the Cheneys: “Our children need to know that they are citizens of the most powerful, good and honorable nation in the history of mankind—the exceptional nation.” That’s the “Anglo” bit of The Saker’s expression; the other “exceptional nation” is “the only democracy in the Middle East”. Because of their exceptional virtue and excellence, the USA and Israel aren’t bound by the rules that apply to other, ordinary, countries. When “exceptional nations” bomb a hospital for half an hour it’s a “tragic mistake” to be swiftly forgiven because of the purity of the bomber’s intention. Other, lesser, countries, bomb hospitals because that’s what they do. So I would recommend, if the phrase offend you (and I don’t much care for it myself), that you mentally replace it with “exceptionalists”; or you might even prefer “neocons” where the two exceptionalisms meet and merge into one exceptionalism.

Which leads us to this important theme; a theme that grounds most of the book: “For better or for worse, Russia is objectively the undisputed leader of the world resistance to the Anglo-Zionist Empire”. How this situation came to be – and it’s certainly not something anyone in Moscow wanted – and when Moscow decided that enough was enough and predictions of where it will go form a great part of the book.

Moscow’s fightback began in 2008. I suggest you start your reading at his chapter on the Ossetia war (Part III). It’s early Saker, he was not a great admirer of Putin, but the key points of his thinking are there – the USA/NATO/EU are trying to bring Russia down; Russia has had enough and began its fight back in Ossetia; Russia is in a much stronger position than they think.

He thinks – I agree – that the Ukrainian mess marks the beginning of the end of the empire of exceptionalists. He sums it up: “In conclusion and to put things simply: what the AngloZionists are openly and publicly defending in the Ukraine is the polar opposite of what they are supposed to stand for”. Hypocrisy will do them in: “What really brought down the Soviet Union was something entirely different: an unbearable cognitive dissonance or, to put it more simply, an all-prevailing sense of total hypocrisy”. He’s right. Look at the Google search again. People see it.

Russia has confounded the exceptionalists: “Thus the USA is in a lose-lose situation: it cannot threaten Russia and seek world domination, but it cannot give up world domination and hope to be able to threaten Russia”. Not many people could have written that in 2008. And, from the perspective of today, there are still remarkably few who understand its truth.

He doesn’t always get it right (but who does? Washington? Brussels? Western intelligence agencies?) and here is an example: “One more thing: the notion that the Russians could somehow protect Syria or meaningfully oppose US/‌NATO plans is laughable”. He, I, we, but especially Washington and Brussels, continually underestimate the cleverness and coolness of Putin and his team.

I am not going to attempt a summary of the book: it is almost 200,000 words long (that’s two PhD theses); I haven’t mentioned the essays on Russia and Islam with which he leads the pack. Nor have I mentioned his assessment of power struggles inside the Russian government or much of what he has to say about Ukraine.

Many collections of essays bore after a while because so many of them are the same thing over and over again. Essential Saker is an exception – he has thought a great deal about a lot of subjects (mostly related to Russia, but that is a large subject) and they are all worth consideration. Not a book for one sitting then: read an essay or two and take time to reflect. There is much there.

Dr Johnson once said “No man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money”; today he would probably add page-views. Well, The Saker has the page-views, now it’s time to give him some money. Buy his book; you won’t be sorry: there’s more about what’s really going on in it than the last ten years of the NYT and The Economist rolled into one. And, of course, don’t forget to bookmark and faithfully read his blog http://thesaker.is/.

And, a final zinger: “As for Obama, he will go down in history as the worst US president ever. Except the next one, of course”.

RF Sitrep 20151105


RUSSIAN ATROCITIES!!!! The Americans attack an MSF hospital in Afghanistan and lie about it. (The lack of response to their demand for an international inquiry is “embarrassing” says MSF. Today’s gruesome details.) The Saudis attack an MSF hospital in Yemen and lie about it. Negligible! Russians bombed four hospitals in Syria! no, it’s seven! no, it’s twelve! Sources? The usual GONGOs, including the ever-compliant Bellingcat, and mumbles from the State Department. Not ours, says MSF, nor ours says Red Cross. Oh well, push a new one out there. The usual tame sources shriek that Russia is killing civilians. That didn’t work the last time – the fakery was swiftly exposed.

MORE PROPAGANDA. “This is the first time that Russia has publicly acknowledged that Assad may have to go” or “Changing stance?”. Nope – unchanged since June 2012:This issue has to be settled by the Syrians themselves.” It’s the West that’s changed its line on “Assad must go“: UK, USA. In fact, the recent Vienna declaration is everything Russia wanted: another Russian diplomatic victory (or victory for realism and coherence, I prefer to say). Which probably explains the rash of atrocity stories above.

WASHINGTON ON SYRIA. Incoherent. We are somehow supposed to think that US special forces have been put into Kurdish areas and will be supported from Turkey by US aircraft at the same time that Turkey is attacking the Kurds. How does that work? What does NATO do if the Turks bomb Americans? Does that make sense? Is your local MSM outlet asking any questions? No wonder Jordan has signed on to the Russian effort, Iraq is baulking and Afghanistan is interested in Russian help. Meanwhile Canada is pulling out of the US led effort and the UK is wobbly. Watch the video – do you see any plan there that you would want to follow? On the other hand, Washington has been trying to get rid of Assad for years. Why? “Barrel bombs” we’re told.

MOSCOW ON SYRIA. Coherent. Assad visited Moscow – the whole thing was announced after he returned home. Contrary to silly claims from the NYT – “chilly reception“! – it’s clear it was a series of important meetings with Russia’s relevant leadership. Moscow’s position is coherent and consistent: 1) to destroy the state structure of Syria will create chaos that only Daesh will profit from (vide Libya); 2) Assad is the legitimate head of the Syrian government; 3) if the Syrian people choose someone else in the future, Moscow will work with him; 4) support the forces on the ground that actually fight Daesh.

PLANE CRASH. The latest theory, based on the “black boxes”, is that the crash was caused by an engine explosion. But what caused that?

IN CASE ANYONE HAD FORGOTTEN… Two ICBM tests and two SLBM tests this week.

RUSSIA INC. Has the Russian economy turned the corner? This astute observer argues that it might have.

UKRAINE. Local elections were held and I am amused to see that they have received little coverage in the WMSM. That’s of course because they didn’t go the way they were supposed to. A rather low turnout, even if you believe the official numbers. Yatsenyuk’s party had so little support it didn’t even run, Poroshenko’s party didn’t do that well, the nazis (in this case Svoboda. Don’t like “nazi”? well see J8 for the European Parliament’s view before fashions changed) did well in the west and the Opposition Bloc did well in the east. Better not have elections in Mariupol at all. The country is every bit as divided as it always has been. Are we in the Night of the Long Knives, or Thermidor? The security police have arrested the leader of one of the nazi battalions and there is a story that the leader of another has been taken. Some sort of investigation of the Maidan shootings is happening which could implicate another. Was there an assassination attempt on the Prosecutor General? Stay tuned. But I’m sure you will all be happier now AFP has told us President Poroshenko is richer than before.

GEORGIA. There is a phone recording of Saakashvili plotting a coup in Georgia; Tbilisi has opened a criminal investigation. PM Garibashvili is not amused. The recording is apparently real although Saakashvili blusters that “the Russians” touched it up.

MEANWHILE, PIVOTING TO ASIA. Washington did its sailpast. Watch this short video of the Chinese response; do you think Beijing is joking? I don’t. Something to think about: a Chinese attack submarine closely followed a US carrier last month.

© Patrick Armstrong Analysis, Ottawa, Canada Websites: ROPV, US-Russia, Russia Insider