Declassified documents reveal Pentagon’s 1950s planned nuclear holocaust: “Systematic destruction” and annihilation of Prague, Warsaw, Budapest, Moscow, Beijing, …. More than 1000 cities.

Global Research, December 27, 2015
Strategic Culture Foundation
Atomic bombs eight times the destructive force of that dropped by the US on Hiroshima

GR Editor’s Note

Publicly available military documents confirm that pre-emptive nuclear war is still on the drawing board  of the Pentagon.

Compared to the 1950s, the nuclear weapons are more advanced. The delivery system is more precise. In addition to China and Russia, Iran, Syria and North Korea are targets for pre-emptive nuclear war.  

Let us be under no illusions, the Pentagon’s plan to blow up the planet using advanced nuclear weapons is still on the books. 

Should we be concerned?  Blowing up the planet through the use of nuclear weapons is fully endorsed by presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, who believes that nuclear weapons are instruments of peace-making. Her campaign is financed by the corporations which produce WMDs. 

Scientists on contract to the Pentagon have endorsed the use of tactical nuclear weapons: they are “harmless to civilians because the explosion is underground.”

The people at the highest levels of government who make the decision regarding the use of nuclear weapons haven’t the foggiest idea as to the implications of their actions. 

Michel Chossudovsky, December 27, 2015

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Recently-declassified nuclear targeting documents from 1959 describe how Washington planned to obliterate the capital cities of what are now America’s NATO allies in Eastern and Central Europe. The revelation casts doubt on Washington’s Cold War commitment to the protection of what it referred to as «captive nations» in Europe. The documents are contained in a report titled, «SAC (Strategic Air Command) Atomic Weapons Requirements Study for 1959».

The US Air Force study called for the «systematic destruction» of such major population centers as Warsaw, East Berlin, Prague, Bucharest, Tallinn, and others, as well as Peiping (Beijing), Leningrad (St. Petersburg), and Moscow.

Excerpt of list of 1200 cities targeted for nuclear attack in alphabetical order

Atomic bombs eight times to destructive force of that dropped by the United States on Hiroshima were trained on a number of targets in Moscow and St. Petersburg. There were 179 «designated ground zeros» for atomic bombs in Moscow and 145 in St. Petersburg.

US atomic weapons would have laid waste to Wittstock, just upwind of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s hometown of Templin in Brandenburg in the former East Germany. It is most certain that had the US launched an atomic attack on Europe, Merkel, her parents Horst and Herlind Kasner, and brother Marcus would have been vaporized in the massive pre-targeted strike on East Berlin and the regions surrounding it.

Budapest would have been completely destroyed after the US hit the Tokol military airfield on the banks of the Danube River with one of its «city-busting» nuclear weapons. The blast would have rendered the Danube a radioactive drainage ditch and anyone exposed to the poisonous Danube waters downriver would have succumbed to an agonizing death from radiation sickness. Adding to the misery of anyone living alongside the Danube was the fact that Bratislava, also on the banks of the Danube, was also targeted for nuclear annihilation. The first major urban center casualties outside of Hungary and then-Czechoslovakia from the radioactive Danube would have been in Belgrade, the capital of neutral Yugoslavia.

The nuclear targeting of Vyborg on the Finnish border would have brought death and destruction to the border region of neutral Finland. Four atomic bombs were targeted on the former Finnish city: Koyvisto, Uras, Rempeti airfield, and Vyborg East.

Nuclear weapons, as the United States knew in 1959 and very well knows today, are not «precision-guided munitions».

For all of its propaganda beamed to Eastern Europe on Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty, the United States was willing to sacrifice the very peoples it proclaimed to want to «free» from the Soviet bloc. America’s «mutually assured destruction» policy was based on increasing the «mega-death» count around the world by having the ability to hit the enemy with more nuclear «throw weight».

Increasing the mega-death count was why the United States targeted such large population centers as Peiping (Beijing), Shanghai, Mukden (Shenyang), and Tientsin in China. The pummeling of metro Moscow with atomic bombs was also designed to increase body count. The formerly Top Secret nuclear targeting document lists the following areas of Moscow for nuclear bombardment: Bykovo airport, central Moscow, Chertanovo, Fili, Izmaylovo, Khimki, Kuchino, Lyubertsy, Myachkovo airport, Orlovo, Salarevo, Shchelkovo, and Vnukovo airport.

Eighteen nuclear targets were programmed for Leningrad: Central Leningrad (including the historic Hermitage), Alexandrovskaya, Beloostrov, Gorelovo, Gorskaya, Kamenka North, Kasimovo, Kolomyagi, Kolpino, Krasnaya Polyana, Kudrovo, Lesnoy, Levashovo, Mishutkino, Myachkovo, Petrodvorets, Pushkin, Sablino, Sestroretsk, Tomilino, Uglovo, and Yanino.

Bucharest, Romania, was the target for three city busters aimed at Baneasa, Otopeni airport, and Pipera. Ulan Bator, the capital of the present America-idolizing Mongolia, would not have been spared. The Pentagon nuclear target list does not even list Mongolia as a separate country. The entry for the nuclear strike reads: «Ulaan Baatar, China».

Two uncomforting facts stand out from the disclosure of the targeting list. First, the United States remains as the only country in history that used nuclear weapons in warfare – hitting the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. Second, some Pentagon officials, notably Air Force Chief of Staff Curtis LeMay and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Lyman Lemnitzer, called for a nuclear first strike on the Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact allies. In fact, while the USSR, China, and France rejected the first use of nuclear weapons, NATO and the United States, on the other hand, chiseled in stone the first use of tactical nuclear weapons in the event of a Soviet invasion of Western Europe. But, as seen with the wishes of LeMay, Lemnitzer, and others, a massive pre-emptive nuclear strike on the Soviet Union and its allies, including China, was on the wish list of the Pentagon’s top brass.

Because the Soviet Union had virtually no intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) in 1959 and hinged its nuclear warfare capabilities on strategic bombers, the Pentagon brass wanted to hit the Soviet Union in a pre-emptive strike before they reached missile parity with the United States. At the heart of the crazed Pentagon reasoning was what the nuclear warfare champions called the «missile gap».

There is not much of a leap from the «black comedy» nuclear Armageddon film «Dr Strangelove» to actual Cold War era meetings on pre-emptive nuclear strikes held in the White House and Pentagon. Attorney General Robert Kennedy walked out of one such meeting in disgust while Secretary of State Dean Rusk later wrote: «Under no circumstances would I have participated in an order to launch a first strike». In 1961, President John F Kennedy questioned the motives of his generals and admirals after one such nuclear war pep talk from the Pentagon brass by stating, «And we call ourselves the human race».

Kennedy and his brother Robert had every reason to be fearful that the Pentagon would circumvent civilian authority and launch a nuclear strike either against Cuba, the Soviet Union, or both during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis. According to Nikita Khrushchev’s memoirs, Robert Kennedy told Soviet ambassador to Washington Anatoly Dobrynin during the height of the crisis that «the President is not sure that the military will not overthrow him and seize power. The American military could get out of control».

Today, the peoples of Central and Eastern Europe continue having their love affair with NATO and the Americans. Yet, it was the same NATO and the forefathers of the present gung ho military interventionists in Washington who once wanted to rain nuclear fire upon the cities of Warsaw (six ground zeroes: Ozarow, Piastow, Pruszkow, Boernerowo, Modlin, and Okecie), Prague (14 designated ground zeroes at Beroun, Kladno, Kralupy nad Vltavou, Kraluv Dvor, Neratovice, Psary, Radotin, Roztoky, Slaky, Stechovice, Velvary, Kbely, Ryzyne, and Vodochody), Budapest, Bucharest, Sofia (three ground zeroes: Bozhurishte, Kumaritsa, and Vrazhdebna),  Bratislava, Kiev (three nuclear targets: Bortnichi, Post-Volynskiy airport, and Svyatoshino airport), Leipzig (where seven atomic bombs were targeted on Altenhain, Boehlen, Delitzsche, Grimma, Pegau, Wurzen, and Brandis), Weimar, and Wittenberg.

Also not to be spared nuclear annihilation were Potsdam, Vilnius (five nuclear ground zeroes: Novo Vilnya, Novaya Vileyka, Vilnyus (Center), Vilnyus East, and Vilnyus Southwest), Lepaya (Latvia), Leninakan (Gyumri) in Armenia, Alma Ata (Kazakhstan), Poznan, Lvov (three ground zeroes: Gorodok, Lvov Northwest, and Sknilov), Brno, Plovdiv in Bulgaria, Riga (four ground zeroes: Salaspils, Skirotava, Spilve, and Riga West), Ventspils in Latvia (two targets: Ventspils South and Targale), Tallinn (two ground zeroes: Lasnamae and Ulemiste), Tartu, Tirana, Vlone (Albania), Berat/Kucove (Albania), Kherson (Ukraine), Baku/Zabrat, Birobidzhan in the Jewish Autonomous Republic, Syktyvkar in the Komi Autonomous Republic, Nakhichevan Autonomous Republic on the Iranian border, Osh in Kyrgyzstan, Stalinabad (Dushanbe) in Tajikistan, Tashkent in Uzbekistan, and Tbilisi (seven ground zeroes at: Tbilisi central, Agtaglya, Orkhevi, Sandar, Sartichala, Soganlug, and Vaziani).

NATO and neo-conservative propagandists continue to paint Russia as an enemy of the peoples of central and eastern Europe. However, it was not Russia that had nuclear weapons once trained on the cities of the Eurasian land mass but the United States. Had the Pentagon generals and admirals had their way, today the eastern front of a rapidly expanding NATO would have been nothing more than a smoldering and radioactive nuclear wasteland, all courtesy of Uncle Sam’s nuclear arsenal.

Visas for Al Qaeda: CIA Handouts That Rocked The World – An Insider’s View.

Global Research, December 28, 2015
Guns and Butter 9 September 2015

Michael Springmann was Chief of the Non-Immigrant Visa Section in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, from 1987 to 1989. In his position in Jeddah, he was routinely overruled by superiors when he denied VISA applications submitted by unqualified travelers to the United States.

The events of September 11th gave him a more profound understanding of the troubles he experienced in that job. He is the author of “VISAs for Al Qaeda: CIA Handouts That Rocked The World – An Insider’s View”. He describes the American VISAs For Terrorists Program and the Arab-Afghan Legion

Transcript:

This is Guns and Butter.

I think it’s bigger than I even suspected. I had thought originally that it was a small, rogue operation and as time went by and I talked to people and started researching the book I saw that it was bigger than ever. Given the pushback and the blocking of people, I really think that it goes wider and deeper than even I suspect. I think one of the reasons for this is that nobody wants to believe the entire government is corrupt from top to bottom, that you can talk about Edward Snowden or Tom Drake or William Binney and the very focused, very tightly organized situations for a particular person for a particular item. What I’m saying is that the United States of America and all of the branches – the executive, the judicial, and the legislative – know about this and are covering up essentially state sponsored terrorism, and nobody wants to hear this. Nobody wants to go any deeper in it than I’ve got.

I’m Bonnie Faulkner. Today on Guns and Butter, J. Michael Springmann. Today’s show: Visas for Al Qaeda.

Michael Springmann is a former diplomat in the State Department’s Foreign Service, with postings to Germany, India, Saudi Arabia, and the Bureau of Intelligence and Research in Washington, D.C. He was Chief of the Non-Immigrant Visa Section in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, from 1987 to 1989. In his position in Jeddah, he was routinely overruled by superiors when he denied visa applications submitted by unqualified travelers to the United States. The events of September 11th gave him a more profound understanding of the troubles he experienced in that job. He is the author of Visas for Al Qaeda: CIA Handouts That Rocked the World – An Insider’s View. His articles on national security themes have been published in Covert Action Quarterly, Unclassified, Global Research, OpEd News, The Public Record and Foreign Policy Journal. He is now an attorney in private practice in the Washington, D.C. area.
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Bonnie Faulkner: Michael Springmann, welcome.

Michael Springmann: Thank you. I’m pleased and honored to be able to talk to you and talk to your listeners.

Bonnie Faulkner: Your book, Visas for Al Qaeda: CIA Handouts that Rocked the World – An Insider’s View, is a blockbuster starting from the first page. I’d like to read the dedication of your book. “This opus is dedicated to the people of Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Russia, Syria and Yugoslavia. I offer it as a small commemoration to both the living and the dead of those unfortunate countries, particularly those who were murdered in their millions by the United States of America.”

According to what you write, you’ve come a long way in your thinking about American foreign and now domestic policy. You are a former US diplomat having worked in many foreign posts, most significantly as a visa officer in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia from 1987 to 1989. How did you come to work in the Foreign Service and what different posts were you assigned to?

Michael Springmann: I had gotten very much interested in foreign affairs when I was in high school. I had read Lederer and Burdick’s book, The Ugly American, and thought the State Department needed somebody who wasn’t quite so hide-bound and wearing blinders.

So after I went to Georgetown University School of Foreign Service I graduated and tried to take the Foreign Service exam, passing the written test but failing the oral. Unfortunately, I drew the former ambassador to Vietnam, Ellsworth Bunker, who was a war hawk and when they asked me, “What kind of foreign policy problems do you see in the world today?” I mentioned Vietnam and said that the American government was keeping its actions in Southeast Asia from the American people but the folks in Southeast Asia, the Vietnamese, the Cambodians and the Laotians, they all knew they were being bombed to hell. And boy, the interview went downhill from there. I wasn’t the right kind of person they wanted.

So over the next few years I kept re-taking the exam and always passing the written but never the oral. I sort of wondered sometimes whether I was the right person since I didn’t come from the upper-class, Ivy League educated elite that normally goes into the Foreign Service, the folks from Harvard and Yale and come from big money. So in my situation, I went abroad with the State Commerce Exchange Program, which was a program set up to give Washington assignments to State Department people who needed to be in DC for some reason, and in return, Commerce Department employees got positions as Foreign Service officers abroad. I was sent to Stuttgart.

Later, when they created the Foreign Commercial Service, taking it away from the State Department, I went to India as commercial attaché in New Delhi. Then eventually, presumably citing my background in the State Commerce Exchange Program and the Foreign Commercial Service, I eventually got through the oral exam and then was commissioned to Foreign Service officer, and as a reward, was sent to Saudi Arabia, which was not on any of my lists of perspective assignments and, in fact, I had been told I was going to the embassy in what was then East Berlin.

Bonnie Faulkner: In your introduction, “What is this about?” you discuss al Qaeda. What is al Qaeda?

Michael Springmann: Well, al Qaeda is one of the brand names for the American visas for terrorists program. Initially, they were the mujahedeen, the people who recruited around the world and sent to the US for training and to Pakistan for training and then sent to Afghanistan to shoot things down and blow things up, hopefully with Soviet soldiers inside.

They then became al Qaeda in another brand change, but it was basically the same fanatical Muslims who were doing America’s bidding in destabilizing first Yugoslavia and then Iraq and then Libya and then Syria. And now they’re calling them ISIL or ISIS or Daesh and it’s the same people. It’s the Arab Afghan Legion, it’s the guys originally recruited as the mujahedeen 25 years ago or more.

They’re not as organized as the Marine Corps but they are crazy people that have been recruited and trained by the Americans and supplied by the Saudis and the Gulf states and others, and they’re turned loose to destabilize, de-house, de-culturalize and destroy countries the United States doesn’t like or governments the United States doesn’t like.

They did it in Iraq, they did it in Yugoslavia, they did it in Libya, which had one of the highest standards of living in all of Africa, and they’re doing it to Syria, which I think is in a worse condition now after four years of American-sponsored war than Iraq was or is. There are at least a million dead in Iraq and still four million people as refugees or internally displaced, and Syria has the same problem. There are four million people outside the country.

Bonnie Faulkner: One of your introductions is entitled “Why did I write this book?” Why did you write this book?

Michael Springmann: Well, I wrote the book because more than 20 years of speaking out against what was being done to me and the rest of the world, analyzing the disastrous American foreign policy, the imperial American foreign policy, and not getting a whole lot of response, I said, well, all right. I had done Freedom of Information Act requests with the State Department and got nowhere. I did that in 1992 when I was fired and wanted to find out why, and when State stalled me for two years and gave me no information I filed a lawsuit in US District court. It was sealed and shut down as a threat to national security – and I still wonder why finding out what was going on about my firing was a threat to national security, but I think now we know.

The second impetus to this was several years ago when I filed another Freedom of Information Act request and again got stonewalled by the State Department. I wanted the original visa applications I had refused years ago and had been repeatedly overruled by Jay Freres who I believe to be a CIA official. And he was the driving force behind all of these illegal visas, people had no ties to their own country or Saudi Arabia yet wanted to go to America for reasons none of them could articulate. That was shut down because the State Department claimed, “Well, we can’t find any of these records. They’ve all been shredded.” I said, “Well, that’s not true because we interviewed 45,000 applicants a year and we had, when I was there, filing cabinets filled to overflowing with applications 5, 10, 15 years old. If they had been shredded,” which I doubted, “I want to know the names of the people who shredded them, their rank and the dates they were shredded.” State would never do this and Reggie Walton, the judge who was also on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court, simply closed down my Freedom of Information Act lawsuit as having used up all of my administrative remedies.

So I said, all right. I’ve had enough. I’m going to write a book. I’m going to try and tie this all up together and I’m going to get it out to people who really need to know about this. And that’s what I’ve been doing since February 6th.

Bonnie Faulkner: Is that February 6th of this year?

Michael Springmann: Of this year, that’s right. I closed down the research in December of last year, 2014, and said I can’t do this. I’m going to keep going on forever. This book is timely, it’s important, people need to know about it and sent it off to the printers and was done with it February 6th and it was on the street I think later that month.

Bonnie Faulkner: What kind of people does the US government hire to formulate and manage its imperialist foreign policy?

Michael Springmann: Idiots, and they’re generally people who do not work for the Department of State. State claims it wants the best and the brightest, but some of the ones I’ve met aren’t the best and the brightest anywhere in the world. Unfortunately, most of the people who work for the State Department work for the intelligence services. I had a former chief of station and a real Foreign Service officer, Jay Hawley, tell me that the average is about one in three Foreign Service officers work for one of the American intelligence services. There was a former ambassador, who’s now died, he said about half of the people in many Foreign Service posts work for the intelligence services. When I was in Jeddah, out of 20 Americans there were only 3 people, myself, Mike Springmann, Lonnie Washington, the only State Department communicator, and Jim Page, an administrative officer, we were the only people who had no ties professional or familial with any of the American intelligence services.

According to a book that was published in Canada that ran about 12 pages, that I’ve not yet seen but found on Namebase.org, two-thirds of the people who work for the State Department as Foreign Service officers are really intelligence officers. These are the people who are incredibly arrogant, self-centered and contemptuous of everybody else in the world.

Bonnie Faulkner: With regard to some of your experiences in Jeddah, didn’t you discover things yourself going on there that the US government itself wasn’t even aware of?

Michael Springmann: Yes and no. When I was in Jeddah I was getting some really strange people as visa applicants and later found out they were sent to me by the intelligence services. But in one instance my ability to make contacts and talk to people brought in a major revelation. The Saudis, beginning about 1988, had been very much interested in buying Chinese made silkworm missiles. These were intermediate range ballistic missiles. I was going out to dinner with some Europeans one day and they came over to the house for a couple of beers before we went out and this guy said, “Well, you know, I’m working down at the port and you know those Chinese silkworm missiles?” I said, “Yeah.” “Well, they’re bringing them in. they’re unloading them and they’re moving containers around to block the sight lines.”

As luck would have it, the air attaché was down from Riyadh and I called him up the first thing the next morning and told him what I had gotten from the fellow, and he said, “That’s news to me. I’m not down here about this. I came down to do scuba diving.” So he went and got pictures taken either through a satellite, overhead imagery, or through a flyover with a reconnaissance plane, and the National Security Agency hadn’t heard about that, and the CIA, Karen Sasahara, the case officer whose diplomatic cover was political officer, she didn’t know about it. The State Department’s secretary for the consul general who had once worked with the CIA, she was mad because she had to come in on her day off and write the cable about this. As a footnote, Karen Sasahara is now deputy chief of mission in Sana’a and she’s working with her husband, Michael Ratney, who had been consul general in Jerusalem and is now American ambassador to Syria. So they’re keeping terrorism and warfare in the family.

Bonnie Faulkner: What’s it like in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia?

Michael Springmann: Well, Lonnie Washington, the communicator, said that, well, the Saudis put a lot of restrictions on everybody and the Americans put restrictions on top of them. You had to take your liquor bottles and beer cans to be crushed so the Saudis wouldn’t know you were drinking beer even though Saudis came to American functions on the compound where everybody was drinking and they drank, too. The place was amazing. If you had the right connections, if you had what the Arabs call “wasta,” you could get almost anything done you wanted. I had dinner at a high-level Saudi fellow’s house and he said before dinner, “Mike, would you like whiskey before dinner or would you want an apéritif of some kind? We can get you sherry or you name it, we’ve got it.” I said, “Wow.”

But it was an amazing place. You could do anything if you kept it hidden. If you went out and influenced Muslims to drink you’d get tossed in jail and lashed and deported, but if you had the right connections you could do anything you wanted. They had undercover priests saying mass at J. Phillip Frerer’s house. He was the American consul general and supposedly a devout Catholic. It was kind of like Europe at the time of Henry VIII. You had hidden priests posing as travel agents, doing their ministry there. You had Protestants having religious services on the American consulate compound. It was absolutely astonishing.

Bonnie Faulkner: You talk about how the US Foreign Service was professionalized and merged with the Central Intelligence Agency. You’ve started to talk about this. How does the CIA operate within the Foreign Service?

Michael Springmann: They have people called “under official cover.” They are supposedly real Foreign Service officers with black diplomatic passports. There were two CIA case officers in my A-100 class, the class teaching you how to be a Foreign Service officer, when I was hired by State. They simply go out and they’re given assignments in the political section, the economic section, the commercial section, the administrative section, but they don’t necessarily work full time in those sections. For example, Andy Weber, who is now assistant secretary of defense for nuclear, biological and chemical weapons, he was a CIA case officer in Jeddah supposedly assigned to the consular section, but he worked there maybe half a day and we really only had him in there full time when we had a flood of visa applicants after the end of major holidays in Saudi Arabia.

Bonnie Faulkner: I tend to think of terrorist training as taking place in foreign countries, such as Jordan or Turkey or wherever. In fact, a lot of the training of terrorists took place right here in the United States. What was or is the visas for terrorists program?

Michael Springmann: That’s essentially what I called what I was being told to do in Jeddah. It was the mujahedeen recruits that they were brining from all over the Middle East and even as far as East Asia. They were people who wanted to be taught to shoot things down and blow things up. They brought them by the thousands to the US to be taught in US military training facilities, either in North Carolina with the Navy or near Williamsburg, Virginia with the CIA organization called The Farm. They’re also being fought in Jordan now. There are a number of American bases there that are teaching them how to do this. There are apparently bases in Turkey that are giving them the full treatment on how to destroy Syria and before, how to destroy Libya. It’s amazing. You would have thought they would have done it easier and cheaper abroad but who knows what goes on in these people’s minds?

Bonnie Faulkner: In your chapter “Enter the Patsy,” I assume that you were the patsy.

Michael Springmann: Exactly. Had they told me what they wanted me to do, I probably would have been dumb enough at the time to say, “Yeah, we work for the same government. Yeah, you want a visa for a guy to overthrow the evil, godless Soviet empire? Sure. I’ll stamp the visa for you.” But they never did that.

I had this bizarre conversation with the then American ambassador, Walter Cutler. I was in Area Studies at the State Department’s Foreign Service Institute. They were training an education arm. I got a call from one of the desk officers for Saudi Arabia, the people who follow what goes on in the country and are essentially the State Department’s embassy in Washington for Saudi Arabia or India or Germany or whatever country you’re talking about. He said, “Cutler’s in town. Do you want to meet him?” I said, “Yeah, sure.”

I figured it would be a five-minute hello and goodbye session, and Cutler kept me there for 45 minutes talking about all the problems my predecessor, Greta Holtz, had created for him and the embassy in Riyadh. She was refusing visas to servants for rich Saudi women who couldn’t travel to the US without seamstresses, hairdressers and other factotums. I said, this is the most bizarre thing. He’s telling me my predecessor is an absolute incompetent and a trouble maker and he wants me to do something but I can’t quite figure what it is he wants me to do or what message he’s trying to get across.

Once it was over, I asked the desk officer who was there with me, “What was that all about?” He said, “Well, I don’t know. Cutler was just a queer duck.” Well, Greta Holtz, who refused to answer three letters asking about what was life in Jeddah, what she wished she had known before she got there and so forth, told me on the phone one day after I was out of the Foreign Service, “Oh, I was so upset I couldn’t tell you about this.” I found this really peculiar because Greta Holtz is now American ambassador to Oman, and if she had all these problems how is it that she’s in the Foreign Service still and I’m out, when all I was doing was my job, which was essentially to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic?

So far as I’ve seen in my career in the State Department and since then, the only enemies there are around are domestic enemies, and they generally work for the United States government.

Bonnie Faulkner: Now, what were the three recruiting offices in Saudi Arabia? You worked in Jeddah. Weren’t there two other centers?

Michael Springmann: There was one in Dhahran at the consul there, but I’ve never been able to figure it out, and one in Riyadh. Nobody’s been able to tell me their exact addresses. It was just, yeah, the cities, they were there, but they never really gave me any concrete information. Try as I might, I couldn’t find anybody who would tell me otherwise.

Bonnie Faulkner: The problem that you ran up against professionally in your job is that you were actually denying visas. Isn’t that right?

Michael Springmann: Yeah. With a visa application you’ve got to establish some kind of connection to the place of application or your own country. You have a job, you’re going to school, you’re running a business, you have an investment, whatever that’s going to be strong enough to bring you back from the United States for whatever reason you’re going here. For example, people go for tourism, to visit relatives, to sign a contract with a business in the United States, whatever. Then they can’t stay here. They have to go back to managing their own business, they have to graduate from their university, they have to manage their job, they’re either a manager in a company and they just can’t go away and leave it.

None of these people had any of those ties. They were people that couldn’t name the city they were going to, couldn’t tell me why they were going there, had absolutely no information available to me as to what they were doing or why they were going. I thought once I had yelled and screamed and filed lawsuits that this had all stopped. Yet after September 11th, and in researching the book, I found that Shayna Steinger had been the consular officer in Jeddah who had issued 11 visas to people who were participants in the September 11th attacks, and I was thunderstruck at this. Shayna Steinger, who from my research on the Internet had given equivocable answers to the 9-11 Commission, she still has a job and has gotten promotions.

Bonnie Faulkner: You’re saying that 11 of the, what, 19 …

Michael Springmann: Twenty. I think 19 or 20. 15 got their visas in Saudi Arabia and 11 of the 15 got them in Jeddah.

Bonnie Faulkner: I see, at the very office where you worked.

Michael Springmann: Exactly.

Bonnie Faulkner: You complained because you were being overruled when you denied visas, right? Who did you complain to?

Michael Springmann: I complained first to Justice Stevens, and Justice is the given name. He was head of the consular section. I complained to Jay Frerers. I complained to Stephanie Smith, who I have since found out is a CIA official. When she was counsel for consular affairs in Riyadh and she told me, “This is a very bad thing. When you go back to Washington, tell the Bureau of Consular Affairs about this,” which I did and they had absolutely no interest.

Once I was out of the State Department I complained to the Government Accounting Office, as it was known at the time. I complained to the Justice Department and to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. They told me after September 11th, after I called office after office at headquarters, to call the Washington District office and when I did, they said, “Well, we’ll get back to you. That was 15 years ago and I’m still waiting.

Bonnie Faulkner: So how massive would you say the cover-up is?

Michael Springmann: I think it’s bigger than I even suspected. I had thought originally that it was a small, rogue operation and as time went by and I talked to people and started researching the book I saw that it was bigger than ever. Given the pushback and the blocking of people, like Amy Goodman on DemocracyNow! and Tom Devine at the Government Accountability Project, I really think that it goes wider and deeper than even I suspect.

I think one of the reasons for this is that nobody wants to believe the entire government is corrupt from top to bottom, that you can talk about Edward Snowden or Tom Drake or William Binney and the very focused, very tightly organized situations for a particular person for a particular item. What I’m saying is that the United States of America and all of the branches – the executive, the judicial, and the legislative – know about this and are covering up essentially state sponsored terrorism, and nobody wants to hear this. Nobody wants to go any deeper in it than I’ve gotten, and I think there’s a lot more to be uncovered if you can ever find the right person to talk.

Bonnie Faulkner: You write, “What I was protesting was in reality an effort to bring recruits, rounded up by Osama bin Laden, to the United States for terrorist training by the CIA. They would then be returned to Afghanistan to fight against the then-Soviets.”

Michael Springmann: Exactly. They went all in with the mujahedeen. They had recruited them, they had trained them, and along the way I think they realized that, hey, we’ve got a cadre of people who are really good at destroying governments and countries. Why don’t we apply this group to other countries where we have an interest in having an unstable government with a failing economy? And I think they brought them to Yugoslavia first. They had Osama bin Laden and 5,000 or more Saudis there. They had people that they had trained and had worked with NATO in Yugoslavia to destroy the country, and according to this guy, John Schingler, who had been with the National Security Agency and the Naval War College in Providence, Rhode Island, they got a lot of help from the American government to get them there, to keep them there, and provide them with intelligence and weapons and training and so forth.

After that, they sent them to Iraq and we’ve all seen what’s happened to Iraq. It’s been split into virtually three pieces with no functioning government and no functioning economy. They moved them to Libya. They had more arms amongst the so-called rebels in Libya than they had in the British Army’s inventory. Once they had gotten these people there and had killed the American ambassador because he was apparently in the middle of their efforts to move weapons from Libya to Syria to help destabilize the country there, they had this great opportunity to just shift people and weapons to other countries they wanted to get rid of, and the Turks are helping. The Turks ship planeloads and shiploads of arms and ammunition. They were shipped in Saudi aircraft, as well. They were shipped in Turkish aircraft and Jordanian aircraft.

Bonnie Faulkner: President Carter and his national security advisor, Zbigniew Brzezinski, authorized, at the urging of the CIA, the secret American backing for Afghans resisting the Soviet support communist government in Kabul. This then triggered the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, which was predicted by Brzezinski, so the arming of the mujahedeen was not in response to a Soviet invasion but the cause of it. Isn’t that right?

Michael Springmann: That’s right. They were working on this before the Soviets invaded on, what was it, December 24th 1979 or thereabouts – or earlier. Anyway, yeah. They drew them in and this was the beginning of the mujahedeen and the visas for terrorists program, which is now called ISIL, after another brand change.

Bonnie Faulkner: How would you characterize what you refer to as the Arab Afghan Legion, and what was its origin?

Michael Springmann: These are the people – I picked the name up after looking at this perhaps as something of a clever play on words, but it’s basically the terrorists the Americans recruited along with the help of the Saudis and the Pakistanis to fight in Afghanistan. There were these people called the Afghan Arabs. They were not Afghans but they were Arabs and other people from other countries such as Indonesia or the Philippines who were brought into Afghanistan and were trained to fight the Soviets. They were thought to be easier to work with than the Afghans, and they sort of gave them the sobriquet The Arab Afghans, which I turned into the Arab Afghan Legion.

But it’s the same crowd of really fanatical Arabs and Muslims and Arabs who, as Cheryl Benard, the wife of Zalmay Khalilzad, the former American ambassador to Afghanistan, Iraq and the United Nations, we went out, and saw the only way to get the Soviets out of Afghanistan was to find the wildest, most fanatical crazies we could and that’s why there are no moderates in the country, that’s why there are no left-wing people in the country, that’s why all we have in Afghanistan is a bunch of fanatical Muslims.

Bonnie Faulkner: Isn’t it also a fact that certain countries actually emptied their jails and sent the criminals there?

Michael Springmann: Exactly right. They did that in Egypt and I would imagine other places as well. You want wild men? You want troublemakers? Well, we’ve got whole prisons full of them.

Bonnie Faulkner: Who is Abdullah Azzam, cofounder of the Services Office, and what was his role in creating international terrorism?

Michael Springmann: He was the guy who worked with Osama bin Laden. In fact, he was Osama’s mentor, as I recall. I’m trying to remember his ethnic identity. I want to say North African but I’m not sure. He was a fellow who worked with Osama bin Laden to create the support for the Arab Afghan Legion, to support the people who were fighting the Soviets in Afghanistan.

Bonnie Faulkner: What is the Services Office that he cofounded?

Michael Springmann: That was basically an administrative office that handled recruiting, it handled publicity. He had said in one of his newsletters that the people who have the money are in the United States. The people who don’t have the money are in poor Arab and Muslim countries around the world, and that we want help from these people, and the best way to get help is to get it from the US.

Bonnie Faulkner: I recall from your book, didn’t he also publish some sort of a jihad magazine?

Michael Springmann: Yeah, that’s right. That circulated all over the world, and in various languages. They set up the Services Office to manage recruitment, training and weapons, and they handled the Arab Afghan transfer to Bosnia, for example. He was their think tank. He set up the Al Kifah center in Brooklyn at the mosque there that worked also with Bosnia to recruit people for the war in the Balkans.

Bonnie Faulkner: What is Operation Cyclone, and what role does it play in the Arab Afghan Legion?

Michael Springmann: According to John Pilger, the Australian journalist, CIA director William Casey had given his backing to this crazy plan produced by Pakistan’s InterServices Intelligence agency to recruit people from all around the world to join the Afghan jihad. In addition to training them in Pakistan, they trained also people here at the CIA camp in Virginia at Camp Perry, or The Farm, which is near Williamsburg. That was Operation Cyclone, and it continued long after the Soviets had withdrawn from Afghanistan in 1989.

Bonnie Faulkner: As far as you know, is Operation Cyclone still in existence?

Michael Springmann:
 Well, I would imagine so, given that they’re training people in Jordan by the CIA’s paramilitary arm, along with the US military forces and they’re doing this in Turkey, so I think it’s still going on. They just gave a different name for it maybe and they’re probably doing it now more abroad than here, but until somebody comes clean we’re never going to really know.

Bonnie Faulkner: Where were the terrorists trained in the US and who trained them? Now, you mentioned one place.

Michael Springmann: At Camp Perry, yeah. They trained in them in North Carolina at military facilities, as well, and I would imagine the Blackwater people were somehow involved, and they operated out of North Carolina.

Bonnie Faulkner: Who else do you think was training them? Didn’t you mention the Green Beret in your book?

Michael Springmann: Yeah. The US Special Forces were involved in that. I think that they would have the skills and abilities to disrupt a given government using small group forces, much like T.E. Lawrence did in Saudi Arabia.

Bonnie Faulkner: You write, “Not even Adolph Hitler and the Nazis brought terrorists to Germany trained them thoroughly and then allowed them to operate against the German people. The United States did, though, and used its foreign ministry and intelligence service to help, and then covered it up and still works very hard to keep the lid on.”

Michael Springmann: Yeah, I think that’s unfortunately true. Adolph Hitler is not the world’s kindest, most gentlest person but I think that he kept the fanatics out of Germany. But the Americans brought them here, trained them, and then used them against American interests around the world. I think it’s outrageous. I’ve met real live Nazis during my five years in Germany and I swear to God, some of the ones I met were a lot better than people I dealt with in the American government.

Bonnie Faulkner: What do we know about taking the Afghan war into the former Soviet Union?

Michael Springmann: That’s another bit of craziness. The guy involved in that was a fellow who worked for the Central Intelligence Agency, and his daughter married the uncle of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and Tamilan Tsarnaev. His daughter, Samantha, married Ruslan Tsarnaev, their uncle. These were the guys who supposedly were responsibility for the Boston Marathon bombing.

But Graham Fuller, the CIA officer, he managed the attacks on the Muslim republics in the Soviet Union. They sent the crazies across the Amu Darya River and they trained them and funneled the CIA’s supplies for scattered strikes against various military installations, factories and storage tanks in the old Soviet Union. I think that’s remarkably dangerous given that the Soviets had half the supply of the world’s atomic bombs.

Bonnie Faulkner: You also point out in your book the similarities between the former Yugoslavia and the former USSR in that they both contained a very diverse population, ethnically, religious-wise, so then I guess it would have been easier to stir up trouble in these areas.

Michael Springmann: Oh, yeah. For example, in Yugoslavia the Americans set the Orthodox and the Catholics against the Muslims and the Slovenes and the Croats against the Serbians. You pick your nationality and minority group and the Americans were backing somebody on the other side. When Germany, I guess with the encouragement of the United States, recognized the two most economically viable sections of Yugoslavia, such as Slovenia and Croatia, to secede and form their own country, that helped immensely with the breakup of Yugoslavia.

Michael Parenti in his article about the breakup of Yugoslavia talked about how even the American government got Congress to block funding for any organization that still adhered to the old Yugoslav government and didn’t declare themselves an independent country, which I think is absolutely madness.

Bonnie Faulkner: What is the Maktab al-Khidamat?

Michael Springmann: That’s the Arabic for the Services Office that Abdullah Azzam and Abdul Anas were running to support the Arab Afghans, the people they recruited to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan who were not Afghan nationals.

Bonnie Faulkner: Didn’t Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, the blind sheik, himself get a tourist visa to come to the United States?

Michael Springmann: Yes, indeed.

Bonnie Faulkner: And what role had he been playing with the CIA?

Michael Springmann: Well, nobody really talks about what he was doing. He supposedly was this bad boy, yet traveled on American visas all around the world and in going in and out of the United States despite being on a watch list. The interesting thing is that when he got the visa in the Sudan the deputy chief of mission at the time was the fellow who gave me such problems in Saudi Arabia, Joseph P. O’Neill Jr. He had gotten his job there through a CIA family and according to his statement in the Georgetown University Oral History Project, there was another CIA agent like the blind sheik who got a visa and nobody talks about him. And O’Neill blamed the local staff for doing this when it was a CIA case officer who was there who supposedly didn’t bother to check the microfiche lookout book for names of terrorists and other bad boys.

Bonnie Faulkner: It seems to me with regard to the blind sheik that we often see the people that work with the government then become the enemy, and they turn around and attack them or accuse them of something. I mean, the blind sheik is doing life, isn’t he?

Michael Springmann: Yeah. He’s down in, I think, Texas. He had been at the al Farouk mosque in Brooklyn at the al Kifah center and they just simply let him go back and forth with no problem whatsoever. The thing of it was the blind sheik isn’t by himself. Osama bin Laden was another CIA recruit, and he suddenly became on their outs when he had served his purposes.

I once interviewed this Toto Constant, this murderer, war criminal and human rights violator in Haiti that was one of the CIA people in place down there, and when they were tired of him they threw him in jail. So they’re like Kleenex. You use them to blow your nose and when that’s done you throw them away.

Bonnie Faulkner: How was the al Farouk mosque in Brooklyn used?

Michael Springmann: It was a transfer point for recruits. It was a transfer point for money. They sent them funds and operatives to Bosnia. They found this out after the war in Yugoslavia was over. And it’s by and large a way station. They got money from the US, Muslims and Arabs in the United States, they laundered it there and they sent it on to Afghanistan and to Bosnia and to other places in the former Yugoslavia.

Bonnie Faulkner: Are the Arab Afghan Legion, al Qaeda and ISIS all one in the same?

Michael Springmann: 
Pretty much. They’re rebranded. You’ve got roughly the same fanatical people that are recruited and trained and armed with American, Saudi, Gulf, Turkish, Jordanian and Israeli help. These are the same people. They may not be the guys they recruited 25 years ago but they may be the people that they trained, or people that they trained who then later trained somebody else.
I put that question to former Senator Mike Gravel from Alaska, and also to retired Army officer, Colonel Tony Shaffer. I said to them, “Are these the same guys that we trained here who are now fighting American soldiers?” and both of them said, “Yes, these are the same folks.” They’ve been rebranded, they changed their name, they’ve got different people. I won’t say it’s as organized as the United States Marine Corps but they are a pretty good shotgun. You load them and you aim them and fire in the general direction of something you want to hit and sooner or later, you fire enough pellets, you’ll hit something.

Bonnie Faulkner: You write that the visas issued in Jeddah for the mujahedeen and ultimately al Qaeda and ISIS were not a one-off program. Could you explain that? Were there other centers doing this and continue to issue these visas?

Michael Springmann: I think that at the time I thought it was an original, one-time deal and then I began hearing about the recruiting offices in Dhahran in the eastern province and I said, “Wait a minute.” And then as time went by and I was out of the State Department and started hearing about al Qaeda, I said, “Well, this is still going on.” And when I read about Shayna Steinger binger at the CIA’s Jeddah consulate issuing visas to 11 of the 20 hijackers for September 11th I said, “My God, it’s still going on.” When I read in John Schindler’s book, Unholy Terror, he had drawn links between Bosnia and Afghanistan and the September 11th people. He names names in his book which I repeated in mine, of people who were tied in with the September 11th planning and execution. I said, “My God, this is still going on,” and from what I could see in the daily newspapers, they haven’t given up recruiting these characters.

Bonnie Faulkner: So then, is the Arab Afghan Legion still marching?

Michael Springmann: I think they are. They just have a different brand name. They’re no longer the mujahedeen and they’re no longer al Qaeda. They’re now ISIL or ISIS or IS or Daesh, pick it.

Bonnie Faulkner: The US has supported Muslim fundamentalists and opposed Arab secular nationalism. What has been the overall effect of this foreign policy?

Michael Springmann: Disaster. Who was it, Robert Dreyfuss wrote in his book, The Devil’s Game, that originally the Americans saw Islam as a shield against the godless communists. And then they came around to the idea of, well, you know, let’s use them as a sword against the godless communists. And up until the Afghan war, using these people as a sword and as a shield was kind of an ad hoc thing. If you wanted to try and get rid of the government of Egypt and try and get Gamal Abdel Nasser assassinated in Damascus, well, you hired somebody to do this. If you wanted to destabilize Syria because it was too socialist you tried to hire someone in the intelligence services there to overthrow the government.

But that was a catch as catch can thing. It was a one-off business, but with the creation of the Arab Afghan Legion, the many rebrands of the mujahedeen, you’ve now got a cadre of people available any time, any where the United States government wants to de-house, destabilize,
de-culturalize a country.

Bonnie Faulkner: Michael Springmann, thank you so much.

Michael Springmann: Well, thank you. I am honored and delighted and quite happy to have helped to get the word out to people who are interested in hearing it.

** * * *

I’ve been speaking with J. Michael Springmann. Today’s show has been: Visas for Al Qaeda. Michael Springmann is a former diplomat in the State Department’s Foreign Service, with postings to Germany, India, Saudi Arabia, and the Bureau of Intelligence and Research in Washington, D.C. He was Chief of the Non-Immigrant Visa Section in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, from 1987 to 1989. He is the author of Visas for Al Qaeda: CIA Handouts That Rocked The World – An Insider’s View. He is the published author of several articles on national security themes, particularly those dealing with relations between the CIA and the Department of State.  He is now an attorney in private practice, admitted to the bars of Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia. Contact him at info@daenapub.com. Visit his website at www.michaelspringmann.com .

Guns and Butter is produced by Bonnie Faulkner, Yarrow Mahko and Tony Rango. Email us at faulkner@gunsandbutter.org. Visit www.gunsandbutter.org to sign up for our email list and receive our newsletter. Guns and Butter online now includes a new website, an active Twitter feed, show archives and a blog. Follow us at #gandbradio. 

The transcript is made available through Global Research.

Links and Resources:

The original source of this article is Guns and Butter

Did John McCain meet with Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the alleged head of the Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL, Daesh)?

Global Research, December 28, 2015

The visit took place on May 27, 2013.

According to news reports:

Arizona Senator McCain crossed into Syria from Turkey with General Salem Idris, who leads the Supreme Military Council of the Free Syrian Army, and stayed there for several hours before returning back.

The senator met with assembled leaders of Free Syrian Army units in both Turkey and Syria.

McCain with al-Baghdadi from TV report

According to AP, McCain crossed the border near Kilis, Turkey, and spent two hours meeting with ‘rebel leaders’ near Idlib, Syria. The article further states that McCain made the trip in order to demand “aggressive military action in the 2-year-old Syrian civil war, calling for the establishment of a no-fly zone and arming the rebels”.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/31/john-mccain-syrian-rebels_n_3368036.html

Presidential Spokesman Jay Carney said “the White House was aware in advance of McCain’s plans to travel to Syria. Carney declined to say whether McCain was carrying any message from the administration, but he said White House officials looked forward to hearing about his trip”.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/28/john-mccain-syria_n_3346886.html

Here is an ABC News report on the visit, posted to YouTube: it speaks for itself.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IbfsTcJCKDE

McCain’s two-hour visit has garnered a lot of attention because some bloggers claim that two of the rebel leaders seen in the photos that McCain posted to his Twitter account look very much like leaders of the Islamic State: Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and Muahmmad Noor.

https://socioecohistory.wordpress.com/2014/08/13/senator-john-mccains-whoops-moment-photographed-chilling-with-isis-chief-al-baghdadi-and-terrorist-muahmmad-noor/

Al-Baghdadi profile

The New York Times, on Sept. 11, 2014 mentioned the blog Socioeconomic History in an article  that attempted to help McCain by simply claiming that the Internet “rumors” were “false”; however the Times didn’t provide any details: only a denial by McCain’s communications director and another denial by the executive director of the Syrian Emergency Task Force, a DC lobbying organization led by a Palestinian employee of AIPAC, which arranged the senator’s visit.

http://www.voltairenet.org/article185085.html

(http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/12/world/middleeast/try-as-he-may-john-mccain-cant-shake-falsehoods-about-ties-to-isis.html)

While information about Muahmmad Noor is hard to find, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is the alleged leader of the Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL, Daesh).

Other blogs have denied that the man seen talking to McCain is al-Baghdadi, pointing to decoy photographs provided afterwards by the US and the Iraqi government.

However, the photographs that McCain posted to his Twitter account and a video published by the IS on July 5, 2014, in which al Baghdadi is leading Friday prayers in Mosul, are eerily alike.

(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-SZJMMdWC6o)

Al-Baghdadi in meeting with McCain

Closeup of al-Baghdadi speaking to McCain

Not only that, the man in the first photograph of Al-Baghdadi released by the U.S. in 2011 looks identical to the man who met with McCain.

Mugshot of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi

Closeup of al-Baghdadi outside with McCain

The United States held al-Baghdadi in a military prison in Iraq named Camp Bucca from 2005 to 2009 (or 2010) and then released him, allegedly at the request of the Iraqi government. As he was being turned over to the custody of the Iraqi government, he reportedly told his US military captors, “I’ll see you in New York”. (quoted by Fox News)

http://insider.foxnews.com/2014/06/13/next-bin-laden-isis-leader-abu-bakr-al-baghdadi

Camp Bucca is worth more attention, as it may have been a recruiting and training center for fighters who would go on to lead the IS.

Right after al-Baghdadi was freed, the Islamic State emerged out of nowhere and rapidly took over important swaths of Iraq and Syria. The U.S. officially designated al-Baghdadi a terrorist on October 4, 2011, and offered the $10 million reward for his capture or killing. This was when the U.S. released its first photograph of its former prisoner.

Subsequently, the U.S. released another mug shot from Camp Bucca, which doesn’t look like the first, partly because the man has glasses and a heavy beard. A really bad photograph released by the Iraqi Interior Ministry, like the second US mug shot, also seems to be a decoy intended to cover up al-Baghdadi’s connections with the U.S. government. It doesn’t appear to be the same man.

The details about al-Baghdadi’s background are as blurry as the Iraqi Interior photograph. He is reported to have been born in Samarra, north of Baghdad, on July 28, 1971. According to an article in The Telegraph, he was a Salafi, who became al-Qaeda’s point man in Qaim in Iraq’s western desert. The article states:

“Abu Duaa was connected to the intimidation, torture and murder of local civilians in Qaim”, says a Pentagon document. “He would kidnap individuals or entire families, accuse them, pronounce sentence and then publicly execute them.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/iraq/10566001/Meet-al-Qaedas-new-poster-boy-for-the-Middle-East.html

Al-Baghjdadi would be only 43 when he was filmed leading prayers in Mosul in 2014, and 42 when he met with John McCain in 2013. The McCain photos and the Mosul videos show a man of about that age.

Al-Baghdadi in Mosul

Senator McCain has a long relationship with the CIA as the president of the State Department-funded International Republican Institute. The IRI organized the overthrow of Haitian President Jean Bertrand Aristide in 2004, and has been involved in many other overthrow operations, including the coup in Ukraine.

According to journalist Thierry Meyssan, who is based in Damascus, McCain participated in every color revolution over the past 20 years. Also according to Meyssan, McCain chaired a meeting held in Cairo on February 4, 2011, which NATO had organized to launch the “Arab Spring” in Libya and Syria. The so-called uprising in Syria began shortly afterward. http://www.voltairenet.org/article185085.html

Meyssan’s claim that McCain is intimately involved with CIA-organized overthrows makes lot more sense than the fiction that nobody knows who Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is or how this violent Iraqi al-Qaeda leader ended up meeting of ‘Syrian rebels’ with the senator inside of Syria. The inescapable conclusion is that all of the men at the meeting, including al-Baghdadi are CIA assets, and that IS is a CIA creation.

GR. Editor’s Note: The author of this article has requested that his name not appear due to the sensitive nature of this text.  While GR has verified the sources and evidence presented herewith, the usual disclaimer applies (see below). 

French lawyer asks every MP to impeach Hollande for war crimes in Donetsk, Syria

Why not President Obama, Vice President Biden, and Senator John McCain?

From Fort Russ

Deposition of Anna Touve

  Egalité-Reconciliation, December 11, 2015
  Translated from French by Tom Winter, December 18, 2015

Original title: Impeachment procedure, François Hollande, President of the Republic:
Communiqué of Master Viguier and testimony of victims

Here is the press release of Damien Viguier, Esq. 
Criminal policy in Syria and Donbass: Hollande impeachment Paris, December 11, 2015 – 

Two women, victims in Syria and in Donbass, speaking through their lawyer, have addressed a request to each French parliamentarian to bring François Hollande before the High Court. 

One of these two women, the one from Syria, was raped in front of her husband, the other, a resident of Donbass, saw her house blown up in a bombing that killed her husband and two of her children, and wounded her two other children, and made her lose an arm. 

These criminal acts are the direct consequences of the actions of François Hollande. One tenth of parliamentarians either House may take the initiative for impeachment proceedings against François Hollande by filing a Motion for a resolution calling for a session of the High Court.

MPI TV broadcast Mr. Viguier’s the call to impeach Francois Hollande: 

Video
Master Damien Viguier interrogates a young Syrian woman who was kidnapped, beaten, and raped by “moderate rebels,” supported and armed by France:
Master Damien Viguier interrogates a young mother from Ukrainian Donbass whose family was decimated by the shells of the “loyalist” army supported by France:
Master Damien Viguier sent the following letter to MPs: 
Sir, 
I appeal to the representative of the nation, in the name of Madame Anna Touve, a Ukrainian national, civilian residing in Donetsk, and in the name of a young woman, also a civilian, residing in Damascus (Syria), who, for understandable reasons, remains anonymous. On May 26, 2015 in Gorlovka (Donbass) Touve, Anna lost her husband and two of her children in the explosion of shells fired by the militias of the Kiev regime.

Seriously injured, she lost her left arm. As for the young Syrian woman, she was assaulted in 2013, at her home, raped and tortured in the presence of her husband by so-called rebels against the Syrian regime.

My two clients are the victims of a certain conception of international relations. In accordance with the principles of law, it is the senior military or political officials who must be punished, and by the State to which they belong.

Regarding Donbass, François Hollande has supported and encouraged a de facto regime that took power illegally, by violence, in Kiev. And therefore he bludgeoned any attempt at liberation on the part of the eastern regions of Ukraine. He does not cease encouraging abuses against the people of Donbass.

Regarding Syria, this same François Hollande, since taking office, has unceasingly kept up the offensive against the Syrian state. He has acknowledged arms shipments to the “rebels.” 

And the statements of his foreign minister, including “the Al-Nusra Front did a good job,” statement, were said by the administrative courts, to note the foreign policy of France.

These facts correspond to the definition that is given of crimes against peace, and of a crime of war. And there is certainly a case of complicity in the crimes committed. The question arises, before history, of our responsibility to all, confronted as we are with the atrocities committed by those who clearly abuse their position and turn aside from the mission that has been entrusted to them.

According to Article 68 of the Constitution, and the Organic Law of November 24, 2014, in the case of breach of the duties of a President of the Republic, manifestly incompatible with the exercise of a mandate, a High Court may order the dismissal of the head of state. The initiative for this procedure is yours: one tenth of the parliamentarians of one or the other chamber deposit on the desk of their assembly a reasoned resolution for impeachment and calling the High Court to a meeting.

Therefore Anna Touve and the young Syrian woman appeal to you and urge you, Mr Deputy, kindly take the initiative. For them, yes, but for all the civilians, the wounded, the prisoners, the women, the children, the elderly, who are suffering in their flesh because of a criminal policy of boundless cynicism and utter unscupulousness that certain politicians are conducting.

I stand at your entire dispositon, to provide you with all clarifications and any details that you consider useful. I beg you to accept, Sir, the assurances of my highest consideration. 

                                        — Damien Viguier

Translator note: There are many applauding comments, e.g. “Nixon got dumped for 100 times less”

http://www.fortruss.blogspot.com/2015/12/french-lawyer-asks-every-mp-to-impeach.html

Putin’s progress in Syria sends Kerry scampering to the UN… Washington’s unspoken agenda is to protect ISIS

From Global Research

Global Research, December 24, 2015
Counterpunch 23 December 2015
kerryputin-510x286“It is remarkable that western leaders only remember the term ceasefire when their rebels on the ground are losing. Why didn’t they see the need for peace in Syria before the Russian operation started?” — Iyad Khuder, Damascus-based political analyst

Imagine if the American people elected a president who was much worse than George W. Bush or Barack Obama. A real tyrant. Would that be sufficient justification for someone like Vladimir Putin to arm and train Mexican and Canadian mercenaries to invade America, kill US civilians, destroy cities and critical infrastructure, seize vital oil refineries and pipeline corridors, behead government officials and prisoners they’d captured, declare their own independent state, and do everything in their power to overthrow the elected-government in Washington?

Of course not. The question is ridiculous. It wouldn’t matter if the US president was a tyrant or not, that doesn’t justify an invasion by armed proxies from another country.  And yet, this is precisely the policy that US Secretary of State John Kerry defended at the United Nations on Friday.  Behind all the political blabber about a “roadmap to peace”, Kerry was tacitly defending a policy which has led to the deaths of 250,000 Syrians and the destruction of the country.

And, keep in mind, Kerry didn’t drag his case before the UN Security Council because he’s serious about a negotiated settlement or peace. That’s baloney. What Kerry wants is a resolution that will protect the groups of US-backed jihadis on the ground from the Russian-led offensive. That’s what’s really going on. The Obama administration sees the handwriting on the wall. They know that Russia is going to win the war, so they’ve settled on a plan for protecting their agents in the field. That’s why the emphasis is on a ceasefire; it’s because Kerry wants a  “Timeout” so his Sunni militants can either regroup or retreat.  Just take a look at this short excerpt from the UN’s summary of last Friday’s confab and you’ll see Kerry’s really up-to:

“In its first resolution to focus on the politics of ending Syria’s five-year-long war, the Security Council today gave the United Nations an enhanced role in shepherding the opposing sides to talks for a political transition, with a timetable for a ceasefire, a new constitution and elections, all under UN auspices….

(The Security Council) acknowledged the close linkage between a ceasefire and a parallel political process, with the former to come into effect as soon as the sides have begun initial steps towards a political transition under UN auspices….

The resolution asked Mr. Ban through the offices of his Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura to determine the modalities of a ceasefire and plan to support its implementation, while urging Member States, in particular members of the ISSG, to accelerate all efforts to achieve a ceasefire, including through pressing all relevant parties to adhere to one.

Emphasizing the need for a ceasefire monitoring and verification mechanism, the Council asked Mr. Ban to report back to it on options with a month, and called on Member States to provide “expertise and in-kind contributions” to support such a mechanism…”

(“In first political resolution on war-torn Syria, Security Council gives UN major role in seeking peace”, UN News Centre)

See what I mean: Ceasefire, ceasefire, ceasefire. It’s all about a ceasefire. Kerry wants a ceasefire. Obama wants a ceasefire. A big part of the ruling US establishment want a ceasefire. No, not the neocons, not the liberal interventionists, and not the diehard hawks like Ash Carter at the Pentagon, but a good portion of the ruling elites who’ve been following events on the ground and who know how this thing is going to end. The smart money has already moved on to Plan B, which is why they’re now focused on cutting their losses and saving as many of “their guys” as possible.  Naturally, the people who funded, armed, trained and deployed these various Sunni fighters feel responsible for their safety, so they’re going to do whatever they can to get them out. That’s where Kerry comes in. Kerry’s job was to fly to Moscow, tell Putin that Obama had changed his mind about regime change, and get the Kremlin to back Kerry’s UN resolution. The primary objective of this farce is to garner international support for designating terrorist groups as “moderates” and to move in the direction of UN-mandated ceasefire that will stop the Russian-led offensive in its tracks.

But isn’t that what everyone wants, an end to the hostilities?

Not exactly. A war against terrorists is different than a war between nation-states or a civil war. A group like Jabhat al-Nusra, for example, can’t be treated the same way as armed members of the political opposition. These are religious fanatics determined to use any means possible to achieve their goal of a fascist Islamic Caliphate. Reasoned discourse doesn’t work with people like this,  they have to be killed or captured. And this is exactly what the Russian-led coalition is doing, they’re progressively mopping up the terrorist threat in Syria at great risk to themselves and their fellow-collation members Iran, Hezbollah, and the Syrian Arab Army.  Kerry’s job is to throw a wrench in the anti-terror campaign to impede the coalition’s progress. And he’s willing to lie to do it.  Case in point: Here’s a quote from Kerry in Moscow just last Tuesday:

“As I emphasized today, the United States and our partners are not seeking so-called “regime change,” as it is known in Syria.

Later in the day, Kerry underscored the administration’s dramatic about-face saying: “We are not trying to do a regime change. We are not engaged in a color revolution.  We’re not engaged in trying to interfere in another country … We’re trying to make peace.”

Okay, so the US has given up on regime change?

Not at all. Kerry was just lying through his teeth as usual.  Here’s what he said less than 24 hours later:

“Russia can’t stop the war with Assad there because Assad attracts the foreign fighters. Assad is a magnet for terrorists, because they’re coming to fight Assad.  So if you want to stop the war in Syria, and we do, if you want to fight Daesh and stop the growth of terrorism, you have to deal with the problem of Assad. Now, that doesn’t mean we want to change every aspect of the government; we don’t.”

(‘US not after regime change in Syria, but Assad must go’ – Kerry to Russian TV”, RT)

Got that? So the US doesn’t support regime change, but Assad’s still got to go.

How’s that for hypocrisy? The truth is the Obama administration is just as committed to toppling Assad as ever. Kerry was just misleading Putin to get his approval for his ridiculous resolution at the UN.  As a result, Assad’s name was never mentioned in the resolution which,  Kerry seems to think, is a big victory for the US. But it’s not a victory, in fact, all of Russia’s demands were met in full through the passing of UN Resolution  2254 (three resolutions were passed on Friday) which reiterates all Putin’s demands dating back to the Geneva Communique’ of 2012.  Assad was never mentioned in 2254 either, because naming the president wasn’t necessary to establish the conditions for 1–a transitional government, 2–outlining the terms for a new constitution and  a non-Islamist Syrian state, and 3—free and fair elections to ensure the Syrian people control their own future. In 2012, the US rejected these three provisions saying that the would not agree unless Assad was excluded from participating in the transitional government. Now the US has reversed its position on Assad which means that 100 percent of Moscow’s demands have been met.  UN Resolution  2254 is complete capitulation on the part of the US. It is a humiliating diplomatic defeat which no one in the media is even willing to acknowledge.

So what did Kerry gain by all his globe-trekking and backroom maneuvering?

Nothing. In fact, he gave away the farm by making a number of concessions to gain Russia’s support.

What “concessions” are we talking about?

Here’s a short list:  Kerry met with Putin in Moscow on December 15. On December 16, the IMF ruled in favor of Russia in its $3 billion claim against Ukraine. Here’s the story:

“The executive board of the International Monetary Fund has recognized Ukraine’s $3 billion debt to Russia as official and sovereign – a status Kiev has been attempting to contest.

“In the case of the Eurobond, the Russian authorities have represented that this claim is official. The information available regarding the history of the claim supports this representation,” the IMF said in a statement.” (“IMF recognizes Ukraine’s contested $3bn debt to Russia as sovereign “, RT)

How many strings do you think Washington had to pull to seal that deal?

Also on December 16,  the US announced that it would remove its F-15 fighters stationed in Turkey immediately. Here’s the story:

Twelve U.S. Air Force F-15 fighters sent to Incirlik airbase only last month to guard Turkish airspace and hit ISIS targets in Syria were suddenly flown back Wednesday to their home base in Britain, U.S. European Command announced….

The redeployment of the fighters came amid a flurry of diplomatic and military-to-military activity in the region and with Russia …

A day before the planes left, Secretary of State John Kerry was in Moscow for talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin ahead of United Nations Security Council meetings in New York Friday on Syria and U.S. efforts to ease out President Bashar al-Assad.

(“US Air Force Begins Withdrawing F-15 Fighter Jets From Turkey“, Military.com)

Another coincidence?

Not likely.

Then there’s this:  On December 17, Obama allowed a Russian-backed resolution to pass the UNSC unanimously that that will help uncover secret  financing for ISIS and “strengthen legal measures against those doing business with terrorist groups.” According to RT:

“The resolution is the result of a joint effort by Russia and the US, which are both leading anti-IS campaigns in Syria….The key objective of the new resolution is the “enforcement of a framework to reveal and disrupt illegal financing of IS and groups related to it by means of trade in oil, artifacts, and other illegal sources.”…

The document, which is based on UN Charter Article VII and takes effect immediately, calls for members to “move vigorously and decisively to cut the flow of funds” to IS.”

UN Security Council unanimously adopts resolution targeting ISIS finances

Is that what Obama really wants, to expose the revenue streams for these extremist organizations that are clearly getting support from Washington’s main allies in the Gulf?

Probably not, but Kerry caved-in anyway hoping that his support would help him to nab the elusive ceasefire.

Finally,  on December 18, Obama told Turkish President Erdogan that he wanted him to  remove his troops and tanks from Iraq. Here’s the story:

“US President Barack Obama has called on his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan to withdraw his country’s troops out of Iraq and respect its integrity. In a telephone call on Friday, Obama “urged President Erdogan to take additional steps to deescalate tensions with Iraq, including by continuing to withdraw Turkish military forces.”

He also “reinforced the need for Turkey to respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Iraq,” the White House said.

A 300-strong contingent of Turkish forces backed by 20 to 25 tanks was stationed on the outskirts of the city of Mosul, the capital of Iraq’s Nineveh Province, on December 4.” (“Obama to Erdogan: Withdraw Turkish troops from Iraq“, Press TV)

(Turkey has since promised to remove more troops following Obama’s call.)

In other words, the Turkish occupation began on December 4, but Obama never responded until two days after Kerry talked with Putin in Moscow. Another coincidence?

Maybe or maybe not. In any event the US had to do some serious horse-trading to persuade Putin to take Kerry’s issue to the Security Council. (By the way, Obama knew beforehand that Turkey planned to invade Iraq, in fact, “an important Turkish official  confirmed this claim by saying “all relevant countries” were informed about the deployment of the troops. See here for details.

Like we said earlier: Kerry gave away the farm to slam a deal that isn’t going to have the slightest impact on the outcome of the war.  And that’s what’s so tragic about all this diplomatic tap-dancing, is that it doesn’t really change anything. Syria’s future is going to be decided on the battlefield not at the United Nations and not at the bargaining table. Washington decided that long ago when it elected to use force of arms to try to achieve its geopolitical ambitions.  Now an organized opposition has emerged that is openly challenging US-backed proxies leaving Washington with just two options, fight or retreat.

It had to come to this, didn’t it?   After all, if you push people hard enough, eventually they push back.

Mike Whitney lives in Washington state. He is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press). Hopeless is also available in a Kindle edition. He can be reached at fergiewhitney@msn.com.

Islyamov says Turkey is creating battalion to participate in blockade of Crimea

From Fort Russ

Translated by Ollie Richardson for Fort Russ
26th December, 2015

The Defense Ministry of Turkey is providing assistance in Ukraine by creating a volunteer battalion named “Noman of Celebicihan”, said the coordinator of the ‘civil action by blockade of Crimea’ Lenur Islyamov.
“Now we will form a new volunteer battalion named “Noman of Celebicihan”. Further, we expect a number of military units, which we must assign, but we are already receiving volunteer assistance for the battalion”, writes “Odessa crisis media center”.
“On Friday we received the first batch of Turkish military uniforms. The Ministry of Defense of Ukraine still itches to help, but the Turkish Ministry of Defense are already beginning to support us. We produced 250 sets of uniforms and shoes,” said Islyamov. 
“Soon we will have the appropriate number of military units, I think, by January 15th, we will gather at Chongar for the world Congress of Crimean Tatars, and the Executive Committee will be here. We will gather all Crimean Tatars from all over the world i.e. from USA, Canada, Poland, Romania, Turkey, some 43 countries,” he said.
According to him, “the battalion will consist of 560 people,” which “will be engaged in the tasks set by the General staff”. “But the main task is the protection of the border of Crimea. We will bring security to Crimea as soon as possible. The task of this battalion is to operate in the same way, the only way we know”, he said. In December, the Deputy of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, Mustafa Dzhemilev, during his visit to Turkey, met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and asked for funding for military units on the border with Crimea.

Ukraine on the brink of a nuclear disaster; Ukrainian saboteurs nearly caused another Fukushima

  1. When Ukrainian terrorists blew up power lines to Crimea last month (to punish Crimeans for seceding from Ukraine), the South Ukraine Nuclear Power Plant was “one millimeter away from an emergency.” Nuclear reactors require grid electricity to keep reactor cores and fuel rods cool. Without it, they will overheat, explode, and meltdown, just like Fukushima.
  2. Ongoing gas and coal shortages in Ukraine and the resulting electricity blackouts threaten the nuclear power plants in Ukraine every day.
  3. Necessary preventative maintenance, including replacing worn parts at the plants, is not being done or is delayed, creating a dangerous situation.

From Fort Russ

In the coming year the world will observe a sad date, the 30th anniversary of the Chernobyl explosion. Could it happen again?

Pavel SHIPILIN,

In Экспресс Газета, December 15, 2015

Translated from Russian by Tom Winter, December 25, 2015

Come January 1, Europe will start draining the last juice from the “Square.” Few gave noted the fact that cutting the power lines to de-energize Crimea nearly led to fatal consequences at the South Ukrainian nuclear power plant, which is located in the Mykolaiv region, – an accident on a Chernobyl scale. A miracle saved us all: workers at the station succeeded in a few hours to restore the electricity to the security system. [Nuclear power plants produce electricity, but they need a constant supply of it to avoid meltdown, as in Fukushima, for instance — tr.]

For nearly two years now Ukraine has been teetering on the brink of default, techno disaster, popular revolt. And every time that there is a miracle, and the dire predictions don’t come true, a cure is declared – a victory over Russia, over the elements with the unpredictable laws of nature, over the skeptics. But in the end – common sense.

Last winter was surprisingly warm. As if the one who is responsible for the top temperature, specifically decided to lull the already careless Ukrainian government. Today it is once again assuring the public: there is enough gas — unless there’s a problem.

And it may be right – if a miracle happens again. Experts also warn that if the miracles do not happen, and the temperature in the apartments can’t be maintained at least at + 14 ° C, a catastrophe is imminent. Pipes will burst; heat and electricity will go off-line. In response, experts are declared fear-mongering pessimists. After all, last year they said the same thing – they warned and frightened, backing up arguments with some tricky formulas incomprehensible to the ordinary Maidanists.

There is only one thing: for the power system go off line for decades, would need only a couple of weeks really severe frosts – lower than -15 – 20 ° C. At least at night.

Such cold weather is rare, but still it happens. This is what experts are always taking into account, because no one of them can confidently forecast, but a technological disaster in the middle of winter – is inevitably a tragedy with deadly outcomes. Therefore, the gas must be redundant and not “just enough.”

The lack of gas and coal can lead to accidents in which the entire metropolitan area will be without heat and light. Unfortunately, the amateurs in Kiev may well make a more global catastrophe whose consequences will impact not only the public, but residents of neighboring countries. We are talking about the atomic energy plant.

There are four of them in Ukraine – a total of 16 units. That is 16 potential nuclear bombs. Experts say that it’s thanks to a miracle that new Chernobyls haven’t yet happened.

Vasili Volga, Ukrainian politician and nuclear-energy specialist: “What happened when these, so to speak, “activists” brought down the power lines? Immediately the South Ukrainian nuclear power plant lost a huge amount of electricity, which the system has to have. According to the accounts of shift managers, the guys were on one millimeter away from an emergency. Only the dedicated work of the station staff prevented it.” A state of emergency was miraculously avoided. But Kiev have provided us all with new problems connected with nuclear power. As Vasily Volga spelled out, the specific operation of nuclear power plants requires precise timing of preventive maintenance. Otherwise, every time there is a risk of accidents on the scale of Chernobyl. “As for the core of the nuclear reactor and all the systems and mechanisms that serve it, we just can’t say,” You know, we do not have money just now, and you work, the way you have, and we’re putting off scheduled preventive maintenance.”

“If it clearly states that the gasket in the main centrifugal pump should be changed after a year, then it should be changed after a year.” All the systems and mechanisms that are around Ukrainian nuclear reactors, are produced either in Ukraine or in Russia. Today, due to the rupture of relations, there have been huge time lapses, when scheduled preventive maintenance at nuclear power plants has not been carried out. They know about this in Kiev, but are silent about the problem, because in order to solve it, you have to call Moscow. Or they do not realize how dangerous it is to finance nuclear power on installments.

The eternal question of our Svidomy opponents is why we are so keenly interested in Ukrainian affairs, instead of dealing with our own problems, has a simple answer: because you’re close. Because your refugees are with us. Because thanks to Maidan our trade and economic relations, which made both our countries stronger, have been disrupted. Not to mention the friendship and kinship between our people. Finally, because your problems are directly linked to our own. After all, Kiev does not pay its debts and yet asks worldwide for offensive weapons. It is understandable that systemic problems come up here and there – Ukraine has no money. However, there is one more miracle in Ukraine – for the second year it has managed to avoid a default. A fact the talking heads and the Kiev politicians proudly remind us of. Moreover, on December 8, the IMF decided that even a default can not be an obstacle to Ukraine getting more credit [!].

That is, the entire civilized world, led by the United States, has defended the winners of Maidan. Pessimists and “Moscalis” again notwithstanding. That’s where the real win lay. Let us, however, remember how many loans have been promised and how many have been issued: The European Union promised in 2015 to provide $1.8 billion., USA – $2 billion. Nearly one billion promised to other countries on a bilateral basis. From the IMF, Ukraine was to receive $10 billion. The World Bank has promised to lend $500 million for injection of gas into underground storage [just like in Los Angeles, where over 2000 residents have been evacuated due to leaking methane gas?], but recently began to doubt that this would happen.

So actually this year, Ukraine has received less than half of the promised amounts, two tranches of 6.7 billion from the IMF. Catastrophically short. All other potential lenders under one pretext or another have not fulfilled promises. No one is sure that Ukraine pays debts.

However, the decision of the International Monetary Fund to continue the lending program says that global players will not desist until that unfortunate country undresses to the skin. Kiev will receive new loans so it can pay the old ones — weights hung around the neck of future Ukrainian generations.

“Square” optimists nailed it: declaring a default is not allowed. They will kill Ukraine. The problem can be solved only if nenka* learn how to produce and sell their products, filling the budget with the taxes of successful entrepreneurs and ordinary citizens. But there are practically no prospects.

From 1 January, 2016 a free trade area (FTA) will be in full force between Ukraine and the European Union. Where previously only Ukrainian duty-free goods were sold, now, the direction of trade changes – European goods crossing the Ukrainian border also will not be surrounded by cushioning duties.

To protect its market Russia will put up a customs barrier starting next year. Therefore, in Kiev, they very much expect compensation in Brussels. And Yatsenyuk’s regime has received signals that there will be compensation. We have heard rumors that the EU will allocate $ 600 million. Not much, but at least something.

However, recently the European Union dropped its promises. “We will say frankly, already since we agreed on an FTA, it was no secret that after the introduction, the Russian Federation could act in response, whether we like it or not. And there was plenty of time to prepare for this,” said the European Commissioner Johannes Khan, cynically.

The year and a half that the FTA has been acting in one direction – from east to west, has demonstrated very feeble opportunities for the Ukrainian economy. The miracle did not happen – trade with the West simply collapsed, and was not able to compensate for the loss of the Russian market.

And it’s not working, of course – it was not for this that the Ukrainians were lured to the Association Agreement, to lose money. Come January 1, Europe will begin to receive attachments back. As is customary in the civilized world, ten times over, sucking the last juices out of the colony.

Now Johannes Hahn can afford to speak plain, without hints. In Ukraine there is no way back – just to the economic abyss a millimeter away. Or maybe it is not. ______________________________

*Ukrainian slang term for Ukraine. I’ve been getting used to it. — Tr.

http://www.fortruss.blogspot.com/2015/12/ukraine-on-brink-of-nuclear-disaster.html