President Putin on Victory Day: This sacred holiday, remembering the millions who sacrificed and died and saved their country from the threat of Hitler’s genocide

From Kremlin.ru

May 9, 2017

After the reception, Vladimir Putin met with Slovenian veterans to congratulate them on Victory Day. “We are very grateful for what you are doing at home to honour the memory of Russian soldiers,” Vladimir Putin said.

The President also spoke with members of the Aleksandrov Song and Dance Ensemble of the Russian Army who were invited to the reception. Mr Putin congratulated its members and leader Colonel Gennady Sachenyuk on the holiday.

* * *

Speech at the Victory Day reception

President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Dear veterans, ladies and gentlemen, friends,

Let me extend my heartfelt congratulations on Victory Day!

This is a holiday of pride, joy and grief. These sincere, unabashed feelings unite millions of people, all generations.

There is no other day when we all have such a strong sense of the value of life and the importance of love for the Fatherland, when remembrance of the war becomes universal and extremely important both for those who fought and laboured on the home front, for those who were born after the Victory and for very young people, for our children and grandchildren living in the 21st century.

This sacred holiday is celebrated by all of Russia. And it is clear why.

It is not just the many millions of victims which our people sacrificed on the altar of Victory. If our country would have succumbed to the terrible tragedy and, like many other European countries, suffered defeat, a totally different fate would have awaited us than the enslaved countries of the European continent. It was not only a question of the existence of our country, it was a question of the existence of our people as an ethnos.

 And we are well aware of this from the documents of the Nazi party and the fascist state which are still stored in archives. Those who were not used for slave labour would have been subject either to physical elimination, plain and simple, or resettlement to remote regions without any infrastructure where they would have been doomed to gradual extinction.

This is what we must always remember when we talk about the truth of the Second World War, the Great Patriotic War, when we speak about the victims which our people sacrificed on the altar of Victory, as I already mentioned. This is something we must never forget. This is the most important thing.

This is why we reach out to veterans on Victory Day. The most heartfelt congratulations and words of gratitude are extended to you. The flowers, gifts, concerts and fireworks, these are all for you.

We revere your valour and self-sacrifice, modesty and strength of spirit. We revere your entire generation which steadfastly endured such an arduous, long, rough and heroic road to Victory.

The defeat of Nazism was an epochal event for the entire world and for our country – a great celebration of liberation from tragedy, death and destruction, a day of triumph for a people who defeated a brazen, treacherous and brutal enemy, a people who paid an enormous price in blood and lives to determine the outcome of the deadliest war and bring it to a victorious close.

Our gratitude to the generation of victors is immeasurable. We will always keep faith with your covenants and your heroic legacy, and we will pass down this inheritance to our grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Thank you. Thank you for everything!

I would like to propose a toast to the victors, to peace in our land, to great Russia!

http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/54469

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Why a Kurdish enclave in Syria is a very bad idea

From Global Research

April 7th, 2016
by Maram Susli

[The following points present] a few simple reasons why PYD/YPG claims to federal autonomy and attempts to annex Syrian land are illegitimate, undemocratic, and could lead to genocide:

1. Kurds are not a majority in the Area PYD/YPG are attempting to annex

The region of Al Hasakah, which the Kurdish Nationalist Party (PYD) and its military wing YPG have declared a federal Kurdish state, does not have a Kurdish majority. Al Hasakah Governorate is a mosaic of Assyrian Christians, Armenians, Turkmen, Kurds and Bedouin Arabs. Of the 1.5 million population of Al Hasakah, only 40% are ethnically Kurdish. Moreover, parts of Al Hasakah Governorate, such as Al Hasakah district, is less than 15% Kurdish (!). In the other large minorities in the area the Arabs and Assyrian Christians form a majority. Declaring a small area with a wide array of ethnic groups as belonging to a specific ethnic minority is a recipe for oppression.

The Kurdish population of Al Hasakah has also been heavily inflitrated by illegal Kurdish immigration from Turkey. Kurdish immigration to Syria began in the 1920’s and occurred in several waves after multiple failed Kurdish uprisings against Turkey. It continued throughout the century. In 2011 the Kurdish population in Syria reached between 1.6 to 2.3 million, but 420,000 of these left Syria for Iraq and Turkey as a result of the current conflict. Some Syrian Kurds have lived in Homs and Damascus for hundreds of years and are heavily assimilated into the Syrian society. However, Kurdish illegal immigrants who mostly reside in north Syria, and who could not prove their residence in Syria before 1945, complain of oppression when they were not granted the rights of Syrian citizens. Syrian law dictates that only a blood born Syrian whose paternal lineage is Syrian has a right to Syrian citizenship. No refugee whether Somali, Iraqi or Palestinian has been granted Syrian citizenship no matter how long their stay. In spite of this, in 2011 the Syrian President granted Syrian citizenship to 150,000 Kurds. This has not stopped the YPG from using illegal Kurdish immigrants who were not granted citizenship as a rationale for annexing Syrian land. Those who promote Federalism are imposing the will of a small minority – that is not of Syrian origin – on the whole of Al Hasakah’s population and the whole of Syria.

2. It is Undemocratic to Impose Federalism on the Majority of Syrians

PYD did not bother to consult with other factions of Syrian society before its unilateral declaration of Federalism. The other ethnicities that reside in Al Hasake governate, which PYD claims is now an autonomous Kurdish state, have clearly rejected federalism. An assembly of Syrian clans and Arab tribes in Al Hasaka and the Assyrian Democratic Organization (ADO) rejected PYD’s federalism declaration. In Geneva, both the Syrian government and the opposition rejected PYD’s federalism declaration. Furthermore, PYD does not represent all of Syria’s Kurdish population. The Kurdish faction of Syrian national coalition condemned PYD’s federalism declaration. Most of Syria’s Kurds do not live in Al Hasakah and many that do work outside it. Thousands of Kurds have joined ISIS and are fighting for an Islamic State not a Kurdish one.

Unilateral declaration of federalism carries no legitimacy since federalism can only exist with a constitutional change and a Referendum. Federalism is unlikely to garner much support from the bulk of Syria’s population, 90-93% of whom is not Kurdish. Knowing this, PYD have banned residents of Al Hasakah from voting in the upcoming Parliamentary elections to be held across the nation. This shows the will of the people in Al Hasakah is already being crushed by PYD. It is undemocratic to continue to discuss federalism as a possibility when it has been rejected by so many segments of Syrian society. Ironically we are told the purpose of the US’ Regime change adventure in Syria is to bring democracy to the middle east.

3. Federalism May Risk Ethnic cleansing of Assyrian Christian and other minorities

Since the Kurdish population are not a majority in the areas PYD are trying to annex, the past few years have revealed that PYD/YPG are not beyond carrying out ethnic cleansing of non-Kurdish minorities in an attempt to achieve a demographic shift. The main threat to Kurdish ethnocentric territorial claims over the area are the other large minorities, the Arabs and the Assyrian Christians.

Salih Muslim, the leader of PYD, openly declared his intention to conduct an ethnic cleansing campaign against Syrian Arabs who live in what he now calls Rojava. “One day those Arabs who have been brought to the Kurdish areas will have to be expelled,” said Muslim in an interview with Serek TV. Over two years since that interview he has fulfilled his word, as YPG begun burning Arab villages around Al Hasakah Province hoping to create a demographic shift. It is estimated that ten thousands Arab villagers have been ethnically cleansed from Al Hasake province so far. The villages around Tal Abayad have suffered the most as Kurdish expansionists seek to connect the discontiguous population centres of Al Hasakah and Al Raqqa. “The YPG burnt our village and looted our houses,” said Mohammed Salih al-Katee, who left Tel Thiab Sharki, near the city of Ras al-Ayn, in December.

YPG have also begun a campaign of intimidation, murder and property confiscation against the Assyrian Christian minority. The YPG and PYD made it a formal policy to loot and confiscate the property of those who had escaped their villages after an ISIS attack, in the hope of repopulating Assyrian villages with Kurds. The Assyrians residents of the Khabur area in Al Hasaka province formed a militia called the Khabour Guard in the hope of defending their villages against ISIS attacks. The Khabur Guard council leaders protested the practice of looting by Kurdish YPG militia members who looted Assyrian villages that were evacuated after ISIS attacked them. Subsequently, the YPG assassinated the leader of the Khabur Guard David Jindo and attempted to Assassinate Elyas Nasser. At first the YPG blamed the assassination on ISIS but Elyas Nasser, who survived, was able to expose the YPG’s involvement from his hospital bed. Since the assassination YPG has forced the Khabour Guard to disarm and to accept YPG ‘protection.’ Subsequently most Assyrian residents of the Khabour who had fled to Syrian Army controlled areas of Qamishli City could not return to their villages.

The Assyrian Christian community in Qamishli has also been harassed by YPG Kurdish militia. YPG attacked an Assyrian checkpoint killing one fighter of the Assyrian militia Sootoro and wounding three others. The checkpoint was set up after three Assyrian restaurants were bombed on  December 20, 2016 in an attack that killed 14 Assyrian civilians. Assyrians suspected that YPG was behind these bombings in an attempt to assassinate Assyrian leaders and prevent any future claims of control over Qamishli.

It would be foolish to ignore the signs that more widely spread ethnic cleansing campaigns may occur if Kurdish expansionists are supported, especially since other ethnic groups are not on board with their federalism plans. It has only been 90 years since the Assyrian genocide which was conducted by Turks and Kurds. This history should not be allowed to be repeated. Assyrians have enjoyed safety and stability in the Syrian state since this time. Forcing the Assyrians to accept federalism is not going to ensure their safety. Establishment of a federal Kurdish state in Iraq has not protected Assyrian villages from attacks by Kurdish armed groups either. The campaign of ethnic cleansing against both Assyrians and Arabs in Al Hasakah has already begun and may now only escalate.

4. The Resources in Al Hasake are shared between all Syrians

While Kurds make up only 7-10% of Syria’s total population, PYD demands 20% of Syria’s land. What’s more, the region of Al hasakah that YPG want to annex has a population of only 1.5 million people. Much of Syria’s agriculture and oil wealth is located in Al Hasakah and is shared by Syria’s 23 million people. Al Hasakah province produces 34% of Syria’s wheat and much of Syria’s oil. The oil pumping stations are now being used by ISIS and YPG’s Kurds to fund their war efforts while depriving the Syrian people.

While headlines abound about Syria’s starving population, there is little talk of how federalising Syria could entrench this starvation into law for generations to come. Instead, promoters of Federalism talk about how giving the resources shared by 23 million people to 1.5 million people will lead to peace.

5. A Kurdish Region in Syria will be a Threat to Global Security

Since the majority of Syria’s population and Syria’s government oppose Kurdish annexation claims, PYD will not be able to achieve federalism through legal means. The only way the PYD and YPG can achieve federalism is through brute force. This brute force may backed by the US air force and an invasion by special forces which contradicts international law. Head of PYD Saleh Islam has already threatened to attack Syrian troops if they attempt to retake Raqqa from ISIS. A Kurdish state in Syria as the Iraqi Kurdistan ensures US hegemony in the region. Like the KRG [1] the YPG are already attempting to build a US base on Syrian soil. Russia, which has been an ally of Syria for a long time, will be further isolated as a result. This will once again tip the balance of power in the world.

All of Syria’s neighbouring countries are also opposed to an ethnocentric Kurdish state in Syria. The YPG is linked to the PKK, which is active in Turkey and which the United Nations has designated a terrorist organisation. Turkey will see YPG’s federalism claims as strengthening the PKK. Turkey may invade Syria as a result, guaranteeing at least a regional war. This regional war could involve Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Israel.

Israel wants to establish a Kurdistan, as a Sunni-Iranian rival to Shi’ite Iran. They hope such a Sunni state will block Iran’s access to Syria and will also prevent Lebanese resistance against Israeli invasion. This was all outlined in Israel’s Yinon Plan published in 1982. Israel is an extension of US influence and hegemony in the region, the Israeli lobby holds much sway over US politics. Strengthening Israel in the region will strengthen US influence over the region, once again shrinking Russian influence and  pushing the nuclear power into a corner. Journalists who show a sense of confusion about the reason the West is supportive of Kurdish expansionism should consider this point.

Finally, a designated ‘Kurdish area’ in Syria is deeply rooted in ethnocentric chauvinism. A US state strictly designated for Hispanic, White or Black ethnicity would be outrageous to suggest and would be considered racist. But the use of ethnicity as a means to divide and conquer is the oldest and most cynical form of imperialism. Syria must remain for all Syrians, not just for one minority. Voices who oppose this should be discouraged. The Syrian Constitution should continue to resist all ethnocentric religious-based parties. If there is a change to the Syrian constitution, it should be the removal of the word Arab from Syrian Arab Republic. In spite of the fact that the vast majority Syrians speak the Arabic language, the majority of Syrian are historically not ethnically Arab. All sections of Syrian society should be treated equally under the Syrian flag.

Notes:

[1] The Kurdish Regional Government in Iraq

http://www.globalresearch.ca/why-a-kurdish-enclave-in-syria-is-a-very-bad-idea/5519109

Are US-backed Iraqi militias committing ethnic cleansing under the cover of fighting Daesh?

From Sputnik

25.05.2016) Get short URL
Iraqi forces and affiliated Shiite militias are accused of ethnic cleansing and mass atrocities in Iraq, under the cover of fighting to liberate territory from Daesh.

On Monday, the Iraqi Army announced plans to begin an offensive to retake the city of Fallujah from Daesh forces. The heavily-populated Iraqi city was the first to fall to the extremist group in 2014, but in recent months Iraqi forces have been able to sharply reduce the militants’ stronghold over the city.

The city also played site for one of the bloodiest battles following the US-led invasion of Iraq, leading to mass casualties of US service members and leaving a once-prominent city in ruins.

Following the ouster of Saddam Hussein, Fallujah, like many other multicultural cities in the country, descended into sectarian strife leading then-Senator Joe Biden to call for the partitioning of Iraq in 2006.

The Sunni-dominated city faced the worst of the systematic effort to expunge loyalists of Saddam Hussein’s secular Ba’ath Party, in a process now known as de-baathification, from positions within the Iraqi government, including ordinary social sector positions in education, medicine, and engineering.

The once prominent Sunni middle class found themselves the subject of persecution at the hands of the Shia-led government, and violent Shiite militias, notably Muqtada al-Sadr’s Mahdi Army.

The widespread alienation of Sunnis and the repeated violent tides of ethnic cleansing by Shiite militias forced many secular Sunnis into league with the violent Daesh extremist group, whose Iraqi branch is now dominated by a cadre of former Saddam Hussein loyalists.

With the government unravelling in Iraq, and the violent Mahdi army once again threatening to seize control of the country, the situation has been described as waves of ethnic cleansing by competing and increasingly extremist sectarian militias – the Mahdi Army, supported by Iraqi forces on the Shia side, and Daesh, along with al-Qaeda, on the Sunni side.

In this descent into social cataclysm, the Iraqi army, along with loosely-affiliated Shia militias, looks to ‘liberate’ Fallujah, using American weapons and support, but with many residents of the Daesh-occupied city fearing another violent round of ethnic cleansing. On Tuesday, Loud & Clear’s Brian Becker sat down with Iraqi-American and foreign policy analyst Raed Jarrar to discuss the latest offensive.

Has the offensive on Daesh-controlled Fallujah begun?

“The news coming from Iraq indicates that there are no signs that the offensive has begun yet, but the Iraqi government has announced its intentions to start an offensive,” explained Jarrar. “US sources have been denying that any operations have started taking place so there is some confusion about that.”

The foreign policy analyst observed that people remaining in Fallujah are frightened by the Iraqi forces and affiliated militias, who they believe will use the presence of Daesh as a cover for ethnic cleansing.

“Militias affiliated with the Iraqi forces have made shocking announcements of late, calling Fallujah a cancer that has to be cut out, and these proclamations are concerning because the militias have committed war crimes when they attacked towns controlled by ISIS in the past,” said Jarrar. “There is a real concern that the anticipated attacks on Fallujah will follow the pattern of abuses committed by Iraqi forces and affiliated militias in the past.”

What do they mean by ‘liberating’ Fallujah? Ramadi was ‘liberated’ but there was nothing left.

“There was a report by Human Rights Watch that came out last year that was titled ‘After Liberation Came Destruction.’ The word liberation is a very problematic word in this context,” said Jarrar. “Human Rights Watch reported the premeditated and systematic way that Iraqi forces and militias took towns back from ISIS and destroyed towns, committing ethnic cleansing. They targeted some ethnicities against other ethnicities, demolished homes of some sects and kept homes of other sects.”

“I expect that this is just another campaign of ethnic cleansing and they are using ISIS as a pretext to enter these towns and bombard them,” said Jarrar. “This is a premeditated policy of destruction and ethnic cleansing that the Iraqi government has been following since 2003.”

Where should forces attack to get a handle on the unravelling situation in Iraq?

“From my point of view, that is not the discussion that we should be having. It is not about which city to bombard first or what city to allow the US and its allies to bomb first,” said Jarrar. “That is why I wanted to comment on the word ‘liberate,’ because it implies that there is a legitimate force that will come in to kick out an illegitimate group. That is not the situation in Iraq. Iraq has many extremist and violent groups, including the government forces.”

“If the United States wants to give good advice to Iraq, then we need to start by stopping support to groups and the Iraqi government, that have been committing mass violations of human rights, funding these groups is illegal under US and international law,” said Jarrar. “We continue to give funds and weapons to groups committing atrocities in Iraq.”

Jaraa claimed that a more meaningful solution to the ongoing sectarian violence in Iraq and throughout the region, would be to focus on policies of division and persecution that pit groups against each other, likening the violence committed by Shia militias to that committed by Daesh, which he referred to as a similar force on the Sunni side.

“The idea of getting rid of all these things will not include dropping more bombs on Iraq, it will not make the country more peaceful and it will not make these groups more moderate. It will actually make more death and destruction and that is what the US has been doing in Iraq since 1991,” stated Jarrar.

Daesh is blocking Fallujah residents from leaving while the Iraqis demand that they leave – what will happen to the civilians?

“They are the ones that pay the hefty price and many of them have been paying a heavy price, not as a consequence of violence, but because that is the actual goal of violence – displacement,” explained Jarrar. “The Iraqi militias, especially those affiliated with the Iraqi government, have been implementing a plan of systematic displacement to gain more territory for their own group.”

“This is a different analysis than you receive in the mainstream media that the violence is part of the medicine, part of the solution, and the US has to support attacks on Fallujah and Mosul because this is the way to get rid of the bad guys and liberate these towns,” explained Farrar.

“That is not what is going on in the real world. In the real world this is more violence that has illegitimate agendas to displace more Iraqi and create more sectarian enclaves,” he said.

http://sputniknews.com/news/20160525/1040198115/iraq-shia-sunni-daesh-fallujah.html

Crimea: was it seized by Russia, or did Russia block its seizure by the U.S.?

By Eric Zuesse

Both before and after Crimea left Ukraine and joined Russia in a public referendum on 16 March 2014, the Gallup Organization polled Crimeans on behalf of the U.S. Government, and found them to be extremely pro-Russian and anti-American, and also anti-Ukrainian. (Neither poll was subsequently publicized, because the results of each were the opposite of what the sponsor had wished.) Both polls were done on behalf of the U.S. Government, in order to find Crimeans’ attitudes toward the United States and toward Russia, and also toward Ukraine, not only before but also after the planned U.S. coup in Ukraine, which occurred in February 2014 but was actually kicked off on 20 November 2013, the day before Ukraine’s democratically elected President Viktor Yanukovych publicly announced that Ukraine had received a better economic offer from Russia’s Eurasian Economic Community than from America’s European Union. (The EEC subsequently became the Eurasian Economic Union, now that it was clear that Ukraine was going with the EU.) That decision by Yanukovych in favor of the EEC was mistakenly thought by him to be merely an economic one, and he didn’t know the extent to which the U.S. Government had set up an operation to overthrow him if he didn’t go along with the EU’s offer. (If some of these basic historical facts don’t come through from merely the wikipedia articles alone, that’s because the CIA is among the organizations that edit wikipedia articles, and so wikipedia is unwittingly a political propaganda vehicle. It is especially used for propaganda by the CIA and FBI.)

 

More recently, a poll of Crimeans was issued on 4 February 2015, by the polling organization GfK, and paid for this time by the pro-American-Government Canadian Government, via its Canada Fund for Local Initiatives, and via Free Crimea, which is itself funded by the latter organization. However, the Canadian Government got no better news than the U.S. Government had gotten: 82% of Crimeans “Fully endorse” Crimea’s having become part of Russia (of which it had been part between 1783 and 1954, and which the public there had never wanted to leave); 11% “Mostly endorse” it; 2% “Mostly disapprove”; 3% “Don’t know”; and only 2% “Fully disapprove.” Or, to put it simply: 93% approve; 3% don’t know, and 4% disapprove. This poll was publicly issued only in the polling organization’s own report, which was made available only in Russian (the Ukrainian Government’s main language for international business) and therefore not comprehensible to English-speakers. It was titled, “СОЦИАЛЬНО-ПОЛИТИЧЕСКИЕ НАСТРОЕНИЯ ЖИТЕЛЕЙ КРЫМА Исследование проведенное GfK Ukraine по заказу компании” or “SOCIO-POLITICAL SENTIMENTS IN CRIMEA: Research conducted by GfK Ukraine on the order of the company.” On February 10th, an English-language article reported and summarized the poll’s findings.
During the 16 March 2014 public referendum in Crimea, 96% voted to rejoin Russia. One question on the post-referendum, April 2014, U.S.-sponsored Gallup poll in Crimea, was headlined, “Perceived Legitimacy of March 16 Crimean Referendum” (on page 28 of the poll-report), and 82.8% of Crimeans agreed with the statement, “The results of the referendum on Crimea’s status likely reflect the views of most people here.” 6.7% disagreed. According to the newer poll (4 February 2015), 96% were for annexation to Russia, and 4% were opposed, which happens to be exactly what the 16 March 2014 referendum had actually found to be the case. But, continuing now with the description of the April 2014 Gallup poll: its “Views of Foreign Parties’ Role in the Crisis — Crimea” (p. 25), showed 76.2% of Crimeans saying that the role of the U.S. was “Mostly negative,” and 2.8% saying the U.S. role was “Mostly positive”; while Crimeans’ attitudes towards Russia were the exact opposite: 71.3% said Russia’s role was “Mostly positive,” and 4.0% said it was “Mostly negative.”
An accurate reflection of the reason why Crimeans, during the lead-up to the referendum, were appalled by America’s extremely violent and bloody takeover of the Ukrainian Government (as the EU itself had confirmed), was given on Crimean television shortly before the referendum, when a former criminal prosecutor in the Ukrainian Government, who lived and worked in Kiev and saw with her own eyes much of the violence but was not personally involved in the events, quit her office, and got in her car and drove back to her childhood home in Crimea, now unemployed, because she was so revulsed at what had happened to her country. On this call-in show, which was watched by many Ukrainians, she explained why she could no longer, as a lawyer and a supporter of the Ukrainian Constitution, support the Ukrainain Government — that it was now an illegal Government. She closed her opening statement, just before taking the calls from people over the phone, by saying, “Despite that our ‘great politicians’ who seized power by bloodshed, are now claiming that we don’t have the right to decide our own future — citizens of Crimea, you have every right in the world. Nobody is allowed to usurp power.” She subsequently became a criminal prosecutor in the new Crimean government, enforcing now the Russian Constitution, in Crimea.
However, anyone who says that Russia “seized Crimea,” is clearly lying or else is fooled by people who are.
Here, then, are highlights from a typical Western ‘news’ report about Russia’s President, Vladimir Putin, in the issue of TIME magazine (December 10th online, December 22nd issue on newsstands), headlining “Vladimir Putin, The Imperialist,” in which Putin was a “runner-up” as the “Person of the Year” — a year when, actually, Obama overthrew Ukraine’s Government and replaced it with one run by racist-fascist (or nazi) haters of Russia, who were setting up to yank the remaining years on Russia’s lease of its crucial Black Sea Naval Base in Crimea, and the Crimeans were imminently fearing a Ukrainian invasion (the author was Simon Shuster):
His decision in March to invade and then annex the region of Crimea from Ukraine marked the first growth of Russia’s dominions since the fall of the Soviet Union. …
With the conquest of Crimea, a derelict peninsula about the size of Massachusetts, Putin at last restored a scrap of Russia’s honor, says Gorbachev, by “acting on his own,” unbound by the constraints of U.S. supremacy and the table manners of international law. …
That name [Crimea], redolent with the history of Europe’s 19th century wars, has become a byword in Russia for national revival, a taste of the imperial glory that a generation of Russians have long hungered for. …
Already expelled from the G-8 club of wealthy nations in March after the annexation of Crimea, Putin was further ostracized at the G-20 summit. …
So, was Putin’s taste of empire worth the cost to Russian prosperity? For those who carry the grudges of Russian history, it was. …
Russia now seeks to position itself as an alternative to the Western model of liberal democracy—and it’s had some success. Right-wing politicians in France and the U.K., not to mention Central and Eastern Europe, are not shy about declaring their admiration for Putin. The ultraconservative government of Hungary, a member of NATO and the European Union, has announced its intention to develop as an “illiberal state” modeled on Russia, cracking down harshly on civil society. …
Putin will face challenges of his own as the West begins to rally against his aggressiveness. …
Make no mistake, though: Russians also remember that their country once dominated a sixth of the earth’s landmass and stood as a global player second to none. That is the role Putin seeks to regain. …
Nothing was said about the Black Sea fleet, nor about any strategic issue. Nothing was provided in order to help readers understand what was happening. Readers’ Cold-War buttons were being pushed; that is all. America’s aristocracy despises its public, whom they merely manipulate and control.
Here is an article about (and linking to) U.S. President Barack Obama’s “National Security Strategy 2015,” in which Obama uses the term “aggression” 18 times, 17 of them referring to Russia. Obama never once cites a reason for applying that term; for example, unlike Simon Shuster, he doesn’t even so much as mention “Crimea.”
And, here is the best video that has yet been issued on Obama’s February 2014 coup, the coup that installed the Ukrainian regime that has been carrying out the ethnic cleansing operation, which Ukraine calls their ‘Anti Terrorist Operation,’ in the Donbass region, though it’s really the anti-resident operation there.
That fate of ethnic cleansing or local genocide — the fate which befell the residents of Ukraine’s Donbass region, the region that’s shown in dark purple in this election-map for the man whom Obama overthrew in February 2014 and which is the area that voted 90% for him — is the fate that Crimeans were protected from when they rejoined Russia.
Russia’s using its troops, who were permanently stationed in Crimea already and didn’t need to ‘invade’ anything in order to protect the residents in Crimea so that they could hold their referendum in peace, is what blocked the seizure of Crimea by the newly installed Ukrainian regime.
The invader was the United States, in its typically sneaky post-1950 way: a coup d’etat. What Dwight Eisenhower’s, Allen Dulles’s, and Kermit Roosevelt’s CIA operation had done to Iran in 1953, Barack Obama’s and Victoria Nuland’s operation did to Ukraine in 2014: a violent coup installing a far-right government — in Obama’s case, even a nazi government (and see this and this and this).
That — and the firebombings and other horrors that Washington’s Brookings Institution think tank want U.S. taxpayers to finance yet more of in Donbass — is what RussiaprotectedCrimeans from.

The aggressor here is not Vladimir Putin; it is Barack Obama. All honest news media (such as here and here and here and here and here and here and here) are reporting that. For economic analysis and reporting on these and other events, here is an excellent general news source. (It autotranslates if viewed in google’s chrome browser.) As for dishonest ‘news’ media, such as TIME  and Fox ‘News,’ they serve a different purpose than truth; so, none of them will be listed here, where the only interest is truth.
PS: For further insights into the lying that is prevalent in the West regarding Crimea, Ukraine, and Russia, see this remarkably honest testimony to the U.K. House of Lords’ 20 February 2015 Committee report, “The EU and Russia: before and beyond the crisis in Ukraine,” linked there on p. 108 as “RUS0012” and titled “Irina Kirillova MBE – Written evidence,” in which that Cambridge university professor describes the profound disappointment of ordinary people she had encountered in Russia, as they saw the misrepresentations in the West regarding the situations in Russia, Ukraine and Crimea. Outside of the English-speaking world, and especially in the regions that are not controlled by the U.S., the fakery of ‘journalism’ in the English-speaking world is becoming shockingly more evident than it formerly was. As usual, however, the House of Lords’ final report ignored these realities; and, throughout, it starts with the assumption that Russia is aggressive and that the West is merely responding to that. This professor’s written testimony was thus ignored. Most of the other individuals in the “Appendix 2: List of Witnesses” were the Anglo-aristocracy’s usual Russia-haters, such as Ian Bond, Director of Foreign Policy, Center for European Reform, saying that, “The most important thing is that the EU, as a rules-based organisation, should follow a rules-based approach to Russia,” as if that would be something alien to Russians. This type of bigoted condescenscion was rife throughout the report. If those people are as blind to evidence and science as they put themselves forth as being, they are dangerous in any governmental role; and to call the U.K. a ‘democracy’ is questionable, at best. Britain is an aristocracy, not a democracy. And the U.S. is at least as bad. In regards to the relationships between Russia, Ukraine, and Crimea, the West might be as bad as Ukraine, and should just quit the entire matter and try to start over from scratch, which means to let the nazis whom Obama placed into power there sink, not provide them with more weapons. Or, if more weapons are provided to them, then the rest of the West should issue sanctions against any nation that does that. Under liars and fools the West is drifting towards a totally unwarranted nuclear conflict with Russia.

Ukraine: How can this happen? Here is how.

By Eric Zuesse
Posted on Global Research, February 17, 2015
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How can this happen?

http://fortruss.blogspot.com/2015/02/ukrainian-soldiers-break-into-house.html

Here is how:

http://www.kyivpost.com/content/ukraine/ukraines-land-agency-give-land-to-soldiers-in-the-east-for-free-352100.html

Screen Shot 2015-02-15 at 6.48.31 PM

So: Ukraine’s troops are permitted to steal whatever they want from the residents in Donbass, the rebelling region. The particular victim here lives in an apartment, and so all that Ukraine’s troops can take from him are his belongings.

He’s lucky they didn’t shoot him (if they didn’t).

The cover story in the 4 August 2014 issue of TIME was: “In Russia, Crime Without Punishment: Vladimir Putin backs the rebels …”

Screen Shot 2015-02-15 at 6.56.26 PM

Would a more-honest news-report have been titled, “In America, Crime Without Punishment: Barack Obama institutes ethnic cleansing in southeast Ukraine”?

Or, perhaps: “Crime Without Punishment: TIME magazine lies about Russia and Ukraine”?

Either way: How can such things as this happen?

Well, both things did — the ethnic cleansing did and does, and the cover-up of it and of its source did and does.

And that’s the biggest uncovered news-story of our time: both the ongoing crime, and its ongoing cover-up.

The present news-report is being distributed to virtually all U.S. ‘news’ media for publication, so that readers of all which do publish it (which can be determined by a google-search of this news-report’s headline) can come to know, from all that do not (show there), which ‘news’ media (other than TIME) are co-conspirators with Obama, in deceiving the American public into hiding reality so as to encourage further movement toward a nuclear war between the U.S. and Russia — a nuclear war in which America (and definitely not Russia) was the instigator. (Even the founder of the “private CIA” firm Stratfor acknowledges that the February 2014 overthrow of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovuch, which started this, was “the most blatant coup in history” — and it was run from the U.S. White House. It precipitated, as a purely defensive measure by Russia, Russia’s accepting Crimea’s bid to rejoin Russia: Crimea had been since 1783 the base for Russia’s crucial Black Sea fleet, which Obama wanted to kick out of there.)

Any news-media that issue this news-report are honest, because the news-report itself is (and none of them is being charged anything to publish it; so, expense is not involved here). Any that don’t issue it, each reader can judge — and nobody has to wait for a nuclear war in order to do so; the ‘news’ media can be judged right now, because this coup occurred a year ago, and yet still it has not been reported in the U.S. as having been a coup (this overthrow was supposedly instead a result of ‘the democratic Maidan demonstrations’ that were actually used merely as a cover for it).

Furthermore, the present reporter offers to all other journalists the full text of the only thorough investigation that was ever done regarding the overthrow of Viktor Yanukovych, a rigorous scientific analysis of all of the existing evidence. It concludes exactly as did the European Union’s investigator when he first reported on 26 February 2014 that it had been a coup, which had been perpetrated by “someone” allied with the EU (presumably by the U.S. White House); it shocked Catherine Ashton, the EU’s foreign-affairs chief, when she learned it from him. This lengthy subsequent independent investigation into the matter is by far the most thorough examination that exists of the event, and it is titled, “The ‘Snipers’ Massacre’ on the Maidan in Ukraine.” Its author is University of Ottawa political scientist, Dr. Ivan Katchanovski. Any ‘news’ medium that decides not to publish the present news report about this American international atrocity, and that also does not at least request from me (or from Dr. Katchanovski) that full investigative report by Katchanovski about how this ethnic cleansing started, is clearly not interested in reporting the truth, regarding what is actually the most important international-affairs news-story of the past year, since the February 2014 coup, at least — the only matter that could very possibly end up producing World War III. (Obama wanted a proxy war against Russia to soften them up for the real thing; and the result is all of this bloodshed in Ukraine during and since that coup a year ago.) So: nobody can say that the reason it’s not being reported is that it’s not important news (now become history) to report. It was, and (unfortunately) still is.

Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of  CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.

Ukraine: “We target civilians.” Separatists: “Their targeting maps prove it.”

Eric Zuesse. 1 Feb. 2015
Posted on Fort Russ

The pro-regime Ukrainian TV station Hromandske TV — which is funded by the U.S. Government, the Dutch Government, and George Soros (via his International Renaissance Foundation or ‘Fund’) —  has reported that the Ukrainian Government is specifically targeting civilians to die in the Donbass region in the former Ukraine’s southeast. It’s being done in order “to clean the cities.”
This is open acknowledgement that the operation, which the U.S. is financing (and Ukraine is bankrupt so it can never reimburse its donors), is actually an ethnic-cleansing campaign.
Previously, on Hromadske TV, a proponent of doing just that (ethnic cleansing) was interviewed. He said: “If we take, for example, just the Donetsk oblast, there are approximately 4 million inhabitants, at least 1.5 million of which are superfluous. … Donbass must be exploited as a resource, which it is. … The most important thing that must be done — no matter how cruel it may sound — is that there is a certain category of people that must be exterminated.”
Here is how it’s done:
[9 September 2014, from Slavyangrad, pro-separatists’ clips are shown, taken from pro-Ukrainian-Government telecasts]
Video of Commander of the Ukrainian Government’s volunteer battalion ’Shaktarsk,’ Ruslan Onishchenko:
“Our mission, being employees of the Ministry of the Interior, is to clean the cities, after the army has ‘worked’ this territory with aircraft, artillery and heavy military equipment. This is a normal tactical approach to warfare.”
Retired Col. General Vladimir Ruban, interviewed on the pro-Ukrainian-Government Hromadske TV, then says:
“I want to offer the Ukrainian artillerists medals, to those who shell the city [Donetsk], the houses and the civilian population,
… for they [artillerists] have deserved it [medals], both because of the accuracy and inaccuracy.
… It’s one thing if attack groups or any mobile mortar troops drive through the city and shoot,
… but if the artillery units fired from the airport [i.e., from the distance], then no one can claim that the separatists shoot themselves [i.e., that the people who are being killed in the city are victims of separatist troops mistakenly hitting passers-by when aiming at Government troops. He is saying that artillerists will clearly get the blame, whereas street-fighters can always blame the ‘terrorists.’].
The shelling there is done as intimidation, … not just object destruction, but intimidation [to get the population to flee to nearby Russia]. The civilian population is intimidated by a chaotic bombardment of different objects. There are many shells that plug directly into the streets or vegetable gardens [and so make the very ground on which these people live terrifying to them].
TERVIEWER: This refers to those that didn’t explode?
ANSWER:  Yes, … there are many of those, … shells that fail to detonate. But Gorlowka has been fortunate to have not yet been totally eradicated from the face of the earth, along with the civilian population.
INTERVIEWER: You mean that the city is bombarded violently? ANSWER: Gorlowka was shelled by our troops, [even] as I went there for the prisoner exchange. Although  it was known that I was there, they [our troops] kept up the bombardment of Gorlowka. 

General Ruban might not have known it at the time of his interview, but on February 1st, Life News in Russia bannered “Militia DNR: Ukrainian Army Uses US Missiles,” and reported that in Gorlovka were found “shells that do not belong to Ukrainian artillery, and even more so do not use Soviet or post-Soviet military equipment. According to their hypothesis, the weapons are from NATO. Deputy brigade commander Army DNR [Donetsk People’s Republic] callsign ‘Biker’ showed shells and said that …  this is a special projectile 155 caliber self-propelled artillery of the M109 A1 American production, which is used by NATO countries.” Furthermore,
“The presence of foreigners in their army and radio intercepts confirms our intelligence when we hear in interceptions, phrases in English and Polish.”
Germany’s Bild, and Britain’s Mail, are also among the international news organizations that have previously reported on American mercenaries, including the former notorious Blackwater organization, ‘advising’ the Ukrainian army in this war.  The finding of U.S. military provisions on the battlefields in Donbass is, furthermore, routine; but U.S. soldiers, like Russian ones, are probably not fighting there. Ukraine is only a proxy war between the two major nuclear powers, not yet a direct war between them.
Within just the past few days, further video evidence was uploaded which indicates that the targeting of civilians is a central purpose of the U.S.-funded Ukrainian war campaign.

[29 January 2015] The journalists of Ren TV [a major Russian network, privately owned by Russian aristocrats] today received the first documentary evidence that residential areas of Donbass [the rebelling region of the former Ukraine; the farthest-east part of Ukraine, shown here in the darkest purple] are being targeted. Although Kiev may claim that ‘stray shells’ hit a hospital or a kindergarten, we have found on the front line that is being left behind by departing Ukrainian soldiers, artillery maps, where the targets were restaurants, cafeterias and shops. Here is an exclusive report by our correspondent Valentin Trushin from the former UAF’s [Ukrainian Armed Forces} trenches:
This is a field near the village of Ozeryanovka, from which recently was a Ukrainian battery firing at Gorlovka:
… [The rebel soldier says that many of these abandoned tanks and other weapons are undamaged, and ‘They will say tomorrow that Russia supplied them to us, but it’s actually their equipment that will be repaired if necessary but will be used at war against them.’ Views of Government-destroyed Gorlovka are shown.]
… In the [rebel-]destroyed dugouts were found … notebooks of cannon commanders, maps. The documents show that shelling of the city [by the Government] was not random, but deliberate. The coordinates of the targets are shown. For examples, one is a restaurant, another a cafeteria or a market where no militiamen were stationed.
Here are their target-maps,
… irrefutable evidence of war crimes 
Little over a month ago, a rebel commander explained why the Ukrainian armed forces are losing:
[13 Dec. 2014, from Cassad TV in Crimea, run by a man whom the U.S. aristocracy describe as being a far-right Marxist
“How the Elite UA [Ukrainian Army] Troops Were Defeated by the Militia. Interview with Commander Kedr” (head of the anti-Ukrainian-Government Semyonovka battalion in the outskirts of Slovyansk):
How did you manage to defeat them?
ANSWER: The most surprising thing is that they were eliminated by the [rebel] militias, who haven’t graduated from any military academies. Many of them haven’t even served in the army before. The majority of them had only for the very first time recently taken weapons in their hands [they hadn’t previously owned or used even a gun]. I think that victory … [resulted from] … the high motivation of our troops, and it was guaranteed by the high morale, the example that was being given by the commanders who were taking part in the fight themselves. It provided such a result. Good trophies [weapons] were captured then, … [and it even] happened before the Ilovaisk cauldron [when the enemy was encircled], and at a time when the situation was very difficult for the militias themselves, … [so] there was only one injured soldier from our side in that battle, but from the enemy’s side were killed 15-12 men, practically all of them [that were fighting]. … Six [of them] were taken captive. [The battlefield is shown with enemy corpses].
… Our unit arrived to collect the corpses of two of their shot-down pilots. But the enemy managed to save one of their pilots. I repeat: Our troops weren’t professional military but people like miners and trolley-bus drivers.
[3:17] I’d say to Ukrainian mothers that our soldiers have nowhere to retreat from their own land, while the enemy have a chance to turn around and go home. 
[4:14: video is shown of the enemy’s combat ration.] It’s an American combat ration.
The actual reason why this southeast-Ukrainian ethnic-cleansing campaign is necessary for Obama, who installed the current regime in Ukraine, is that, if it is not done, and, if the people who lived and voted in the Donbass region (Ukraine’s far-east) were still to remain there and allowed to vote there as being citizens of Ukraine, then they would vote at least 90% against the regime’s candidates, and for moderates, because, even before the regime had started to exterminate these people, they had voted 90% for Viktor Yanukovych in the last democratic Ukraine-wide Presidential election (which was back in 2010), and he was the very same man whom Obama overthrew. Now, after this extermination-campaign, the vote there against the Obama stooges would be virtually 100% — not just 90%.
In other words: Obama needs to get rid of those people. They can die, or else they can flee to Russia, but Obama needs them gone from Ukraine.
As regards why Obama had wanted their land to begin with, it was because unless the gas and other assets in the ground there can be privatized or sold off by the Ukrainian Government to pay its debts, the Ukrainian Government will go bankrupt and become an enormous drag on everyone who had previously lent to it, including the U.S., IMF, EU, World Bank, and others (ironically including even Russia).
Now that the situation is becoming increasingly clear that this land will not be able to be controlled by the Ukrainian Government, Obama’s best bet (in terms of his objectives) is to allow the war simply to end with Ukraine’s defeat, so that no more good money will go to Ukraine after the previous bad money is thus lost, but just cut the losses and bring this truncated and rabidly anti-Russian western half of Ukraine into NATO for the goal that is, apparently, Obama’s top foreign-policy objective: surrounding Russia with U.S. nuclear missiles and with regimes that hate Russia, in order to get Russia’s capitulation to America’s aristocracy.
Vladimir Putin wants Donbass to instead remain a part of Ukraine, as a counter-weight there against the rabidly anti-Russian voters in Ukraine’s western region, so as to produce yet another Yanukovych-like leadership in Ukraine and thus reduce the likelihood of a global nuclear war (which would be Russia’s only alternative if Obama were to succeed in his surround-Russia-with-missiles plan).
After all: John Fitzgerald Kennedy didn’t like it when the Soviet Union in 1962 tried to place nuclear missiles in just one location near the U.S.: Cuba. For Putin, Ukraine is like a nuclear Cuba was to America, but more like around ten nuclear Cubas, in Russia’s case. For Ukraine to join NATO would, perhaps, alone be sufficient threat to Russia so as to produce an immediate Russian nuclear attack against the U.S. and other NATO nations (a pre-emptive Russian attack, against us). The insane ones there would be the U.S. and any nation that supports it — the nations that then are clearly aiming to ‘conquer’ Russia. The U.S., under Kennedy, refused to stand for it in reverse; and Russia, under Putin or any other leader, shouldn’t stand for it, either. NATO needs to end, immediately. It had started as an anti-communist club, and was then valid; but what it was and is after the end of the Soviet Union, is the greatest threat to the entire world. It is now nothing but an anti-Russian club: not just insane, but also evil.
So: that’s the reason why the United States has been supporting (and, until now, even demanding) an ethnic-cleansing campaign in the former Ukraine. It’s part of the evil and supremely dangerous insanity that is NATO.
 
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Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of  They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records1910-2010,  and of  CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.