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Russian President Holds Annual Q&A


The Russians Didn't Do It


The Putin Interviews: Oliver Stone Interviewed


The Putin Interviews: Part One

"Director Oliver Stone's memorable series of interviews with President Vladimir Putin, spanning 2015-2017. A candid, absorbing portrait of a complex leader severely demonized by the Western media."

Part 2:

Part 3

Part 4

'They cannot get clear of these old stereotypes..." Vladimir Putin

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

I don't know if I have the stamina to watch all of that, but I found this commentary on the series interesting.

Doug Woodard

Good article. I'd only add the points that he is neither historian nor journalist, and that in trying to demolish others' myths he has also devoted a lot of effort in his films to promote a few of his own.


Germany Issues Stunning Rebuke of US Sanctions Against Russia

"Republicans and Democrats agreed almost unanimously, by 97 votes to 2, to impose new sanctions on Russia in the Senate on Wednesday. The Senate justified the measures as a punishment for Moscow's alleged meddling in the US presidential election, the annexation of Crimea and its support for Syrian President Bashar al Assad.

The bill was really about 'the sale of American liquefied gas and the sidelining of Russian gas supplies in the European market..."

Canada supports


Re #504 : Stone's 'Putin Interviews' (and vid)

"The result is a culture so intellectually shallow it is frightening to behold...And woe betide anyone, such as Oliver Stone who dares to penetrate this fog of ignorance."

Doug Woodard

Stalin's shadow: how a gulag historian fell victim to Rusia's dark past:


Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

For all those who think that Russia is in some way less evil than the U.S., the story of Sergei Magnitsky's life and death is something they need to just ignore. I mention this now because the "Magnitsky Act" was one of the subjects supposedly discussed by Donny Jr. and Natalia Veselnitskaya, the well-connected Russian lawyer. Magnitsky was a Russian lawyer and auditor, who investigated and exposed a $230M fraud. For his troubles, he was imprisoned under increasingly harsh conditions. When he refused to recant his discoveries, he was denied medical treatment, and then finally beaten to death, all by officials of the Putin government. He was 37 years old at the time of his murder.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

I believe the bizarro world explanation of how the Russian government is entirely innocent of any wrongdoing in the Magnitsky case is contained on one of these threads from some months back. 


Lawyer Files Report To US Congress Showing Magnitsky Case Based on Deceit


'He Was Not Killed He Died': Kremlin Critic's Magnitsky Movie Premiers in US, Exposing Browder (and vid)

Introduction by Seymour Hersh.


The Magnitsky Act - Behind the Scenes: Why Has This Film Been Banned in Europe? (podcast)

"Brian Becker is joined for the full hour by Russian filmmaker Andrei Nekrasov."

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

According to the Wikipedia article I linked in my previous post:

wikipedia wrote:
According to Ludmila Alekseeva, leader of the Moscow Helsinki Group, Magnitsky had died from being beaten and tortured by several officers of the Russian Ministry of Interior.[19] The official death certificate stated "closed cerebral cranial injury" as the cause of death (in addition to the other conditions mentioned above) and the post-mortem examination showed numerous bruises and wounds on legs and hands. Another post-mortem from 2011 summarized the death as being caused by "traumatic application of the blunt hard object (objects)" as confirmed by "abrasions, ecchymomas, blood effusions into the soft tissues".[20]


Michael Moriarity wrote:

According to the Wikipedia article I linked in my previous post:

wikipedia wrote:
According to Ludmila Alekseeva, leader of the Moscow Helsinki Group, Magnitsky had died from being beaten and tortured by several officers of the Russian Ministry of Interior.[19] The official death certificate stated "closed cerebral cranial injury" as the cause of death (in addition to the other conditions mentioned above) and the post-mortem examination showed numerous bruises and wounds on legs and hands. Another post-mortem from 2011 summarized the death as being caused by "traumatic application of the blunt hard object (objects)" as confirmed by "abrasions, ecchymomas, blood effusions into the soft tissues".[20]

Sounds like a heart attack.



How Russia-gate Met the Magnitsky Myth


The Untouchable Mr Browder?

"...His hacks re-wrote his wikipedia entry, expunging even discussion of the topic: despite hundreds of edits, nothing survived but the official version. Only a few powerful men succeed in purifying their record to such an extent..."

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

Matt Taibbi, who lived and worked in Russia for several years around the turn of the century, has an article up about the relationship of the Magnitsky case to Russiagate. Here is his opinion on the key question of what happened to Magnitsky.

Matt Taibbi wrote:

Magnitsky's death would become a major scandal abroad, but that was mostly due to the accident of his having worked for an influential American, Browder. In fact, Magnitsky was killed as part of a commonplace scam in the gangland state that is Vladimir Putin's Russia: a reidersky zakhvat, or "raider attack."

The scam works as follows: a group of thugs with strong government and/or police ties targets a private company with assets. They then cook up an excuse to "raid" the company offices, at which point the thugs take the company's seals, certificates of ownership, registration files, etc. From there, the "raiders" simply sign over the company to new owners while the old ones are either pushed out, killed, or thrown in jail.

This grotesque new interpretation of the "hostile takeover" began in the Yeltsin years but ultimately became a major part of the gangland revenue model in Putin's Russia. One study delivered to the Duma by Russia's then "Business Ombudsman," Boris Titov, showed that 600,000 criminal cases had been brought against Russian "entrepreneurs" between 2010 and 2013, and that 110,924 of them had resulted in prison terms.

The case involving Browder and Hermitage wasn't even close to being the biggest. A firm called TogliattiAzot, which has 10,000 employees and controls upwards of 20-percent of the world's ammonia production, was successfully raided by the oligarch Dmitri Mazepin in a case that has rattled Western investors for years.

The Magnitsky case, at least as described in Browder's book, was typical of the reiderovsky methodology. The raiders first forced Hermitage to pay an exorbitant tax bill, then raided Hermitage's offices and stole documents they later used to reassign ownership of three of Hermitage's subsidiaries to themselves. They then claimed for themselves a $230 million tax "rebate." When Magnitsky uncovered this fraud/theft, he was tossed in jail.


Lavrov: Any US Conditions For Return of Russian Diplomatic Property Would Be 'Daylight Robbery'

"...According to Lavrov, the Obama-led authorities did not know 'how else they could ruin [Moscow's] relations with Washington in such a way that the Trump administration would fail to restore them.'

'Such a zealous desire to seek some 'hidden' channels of Russian influence on what is happening in the US is clearly not subsiding, to my great regret, and does not add confidence that we would be able to establish normal cooperation in international relations,' Lavrov said.

Earlier on Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov, told journalists that Russian property in the US should be returned to Moscow without any conditions."


This grotesque new interpretation of the "hostile takeover" began in the Yeltsin years but ultimately became a major part of the gangland revenue model in Putin's Russia. 

So can one surmise that this great gangster move was a present from the roving bands of US carpet baggers that flooded Russia after the collapse of the USSR?  Mix some good old American know how with an authoritarian and corrupt governing elite and voila the New Russia is born. Kind of makes a history buff nostalgic for the Gilded Age of Robber Barons and outright crooks.


Mr. Magoo

So can one surmise that this great gangster move was a present from the roving bands of US carpet baggers that flooded Russia after the collapse of the USSR?

Of course one can surmise that.

The USSR was the Garden of Eden.

Post-wall Russia, circa 1990 was Eve.

The United States was the serpent, and easy money was the apple.


Magoo in your scenario you left out the authoritarian and corrupt part? What idiot would believe your scenario? Would they be made of straw and useful only for taking swipes at some mythical "leftie" that you despise?

Mr. Magoo

Magoo in your scenario you left out the authoritarian and corrupt part?

In the analogy, the corrupt authoritarian could only be God.

If God is infinitely powerful, could He package a bribe so small that He could not accept it?


CNN: 'Russia is an Adversary, Ukraine is Not'

"...Left me 'sift' through this with you. You guys in the final analysis promote war. Your promotion of Russophobia as an article of faith constitutes active collusion with the US war machine. Russia is not my adversary. Warmongers and their colluders are. You are."












Gorbachev: 'Because of him we have freedom...'


NBC: Interview with FM Sergey Lavrov


US Sanctions Bill Against Russia Set For Passage With Bipartisan Support

"The legislation takes as its point of departure the claim that Russia, Iran and North Korea all represent threats to US national security. This is the pretext used to justify economic sanctions, but it could be invoked tomorrow as the justification for military operations."


Brussels to Act 'Within Days' if US Sanctions Hurt EU Trade With Russia - Internal Memo

"Juncker said Brussels, 'should stand ready to act within days' if sanctions on Russia are 'adopted without EU concerns being taken into account,' according to the Financial Times..."


Putin: New US Sanctions Are Cynical, Destroy International Law

"The new restrictions set to be imposed by Washington caused outrage not only in Moscow but in Brussels as well..."


US House of Representatives Approves New Sanctions Against Russia, Iran, North Korea


'We are very patient but at some point we will have to respond...' : Putin

"The sanctions are illegal in terms of international law, violate the principles of international trade and WTO regulations. We have behaved with restraint but at some point we will have to respond. It is impossible to tolerate arrogance toward our country forever..."


CrossTalk: Sanctioning Russia

"The Republican controlled Congress can't unite around Trump's legislative agenda, but with Democrats they are in unison when it comes to punishing Russia for alleged meddling in the 2016 election. Russia will brush off new sanctions as it did three years ago, but the Europeans won't."



 “What I can tell you is that there isn’t a single person inside the bureau who believes this guy got drunk, fell down, and died. Everyone thinks he was whacked and that Putin or the Kremlin were behind it.”



"The US government ruled Mikhil Lesin's death an accident, but multiple intelligence and law enforcement officials suspect..."  


Collateral Damage: US Sanctions Aimed At Russia Strike Western European Allies   -   by Diana Johnstone

"Do they know what they are doing? When the US Congress adopts draconian sanctions aimed mainly at disempowering President Trump and ruling out any move to improve relations with Russia, do they realize that the measures amount to a declaration of economic war against their dear European 'friends'?

In particular, the latest bill targets companies involved in financing Nord Stream 2, a pipeline designed to provide Germany with much needed natural gas from Russia. By the way, just to help out, American companies will gladly sell their own fracked natural gas to their German friends, at much higher prices..."


James Thurber's Lesson For Power-Talking To Americans Which President Vladimir Putin Hasn't Learned Yet   -    by John Helmer

"...Restraint, patience, 'but at some point we will have to respond' - this is what Putin thinks is good for the new Russian generation to hear, and what he says he means. It's the strategy of FORBEARANCE.

Putin wasn't asked, so he didn't explain how much time he's thinking of before 'we will have to respond'. He does say he's been trying forbearance  since 2007. Noone asked , so Putin didn't say what practical good his forbearance strategy has achieved in this decade. The passage of time - ten years since the Munich warning of 2007; 14 months since the Athens warning; four weeks since the US Senate passed the new sanctions bill - allows Putin to claim credit for 'being very restrained and patient.' Since that's not a credit extended to him by those who cast votes in the US Congress, who was Putin thinking of persuading? Who else matters?

So now Putin has Thurber's TIGER v LION choice. He can demonstrate it to Americans but he will be obliged to do more than read a story aloud to a roomful of children. If he doesn't do more, the military junta in Washington will understand that Putin is a PAPER TIGER and they are the KING OF BEASTS.

Time has run out on FORBEARANCE."


Doug Woodard


German Economy Minister Threatens Counter-Measures In Response To US Sanctions on Russia

"We certainly don't want a trade war,' the minister sought to proclaim. But the Americans have abandoned the course of joint sanctions, she added. Therefore, it is right for the EU Commission to consider counter-measures.' Europe is ready to adopt such measures swiftly, she went on, 'including in other areas.'

'The law is hanging like a sword of Damocles over the companies,' said the chairman of the German Committee on Eastern European Economic Relations, Michael Harms. 'It would be a blatant interference into our energy provisions in Europe and would result in rising energy prices and a decline in the competitiveness of European business.'

The German government fears that the sanctions will hinder the construction of the Nord Stream II pipeline..."


CrossTalk Bullhorns: Sanctions War (and vid)

"I suppose it is time to speak the obvious: Cold War 2.0 is officially on, though this Cold War is different and possibly more dangerous..."


TRNN: Russians See Sanctions Regime As A Blessing in Disguise

"Despite existing sanctions against Russia, German exports to Russia have gone up by twenty percent, further there are increasing investments in the domestic economy says Richard Sakwa, professor of Russian and European Politics at the University of Kent..."


Mike Pence Accuses Russia of Trying to Assassinate Montenegrin Prime Minister

"Pence also expressed the US' unwavering support for Montenegro and admiration for the country's resolve in the face of Russian attempts to divert it from its Euro-Atlantic path..."


Top French Intel Boss Reveals 'Operation Beluga'

"Renowned French security expert Paul Barril discloses the existence of Operation Beluga, a covert Western intelligence scheme intended to undermine Russia and its leaders.

'It was a performance paid for by Berezovsky who harbored a growing hatred for President Putin. Mr Berezovsky began to gather together all the 'opposition' who were in London. They repeatedly visited Berezovsky who paid them for information. Mr Browder was closely connected to Mr Berezovsky (and Litvinenko) - was in his service and did everything asked of him by Mr Berezovsky. Berezovsky collaborated with Browder to blacken Putin's image. They carried out manipulation and destabilization actions. For example, Browder disseminated rumors that the president has $200 billion dollars which he keeps outside of Russia. That is false. All activities were coordinated by these two."


Russia To Reduce Reliance on US Dollar & Payment Systems in Response to Sanctions

"The Russian government will intensify efforts to cut the country's dependence on US payment systems and the dollar as a settling currency, said Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov on Monday, as quoted by RIA Novosti.

'We will of course, speed up the work on import substitution, reduce dependence on US payment systems and the dollar as a settling currency and so on. It is becoming vitally important..."


CrossTalk Bullhorns: Targeting RT (and vid)

"The war against freedom of speech continues and you guessed it - RT is being targeted again. Also, has Russia given up on Trump? And will anything stop the leaks in Washington?"


Our Russia Fixation is Devolving Into An Assault on Political Discourse

"In July, with the announcement that it was creating the Alliance for Securing Democracy (ASD), which would seek 'to work to publicly document and expose Vladimir Putin's ongoing efforts to subvert democracy in the United States and Europe,' it became clear that GMF was abandoning the Ostpolitik that characterized Brandt's foreign policy and instead embracing the Russian panic that dominates the current discourse in Washington.

According to the press release announcing the project:

'Hamilton 68 will help journalists and ordinary people alike identify Russian messaging themes and detect active disfunction or attack campaigns at the start. This will reduce the effectiveness of Russia's attempts to influence Americans' thinking and deter this activity in the future.

How will it achieve this goal? By tracking 600 Twitter accounts which are said to be furthering Russian influence in the United States..."

Welcome to PropOrNot 2.0...


Liberating Europe From Russian Gas

"...This is not just a provocation of Russia, but of the whole world. It's leveled by a bipartisan effort, and general (although insane) consensus that Russia is trying to revive the Soviet empire, is constantly interfering in foreign countries' elections, and represents an 'existential' threat to the US and its freedoms, etc.

And the new overt, standard, crazy Russophobia of the media and the liberal shift towards McCain - mentality (as though it should be the comforting default and responsible worldview) is scary. So is Trump's inevitable capitulation to the Russophiles.

One can only hope that Europe says no,  and that US demands and overreach in time undermine the metastasizing NATO alliance, the central problem to begin with."


The Guns of August

"In the closing weeks of the summer, tens of thousands of NATO and Russian soldiers are participating in duelling war games across Europe. Just over  a century after the guns of August 1914 announced the outbreak of WWI in Europe, conditions are being created in multiple military flash-points for the eruption of conflict between the world's major nuclear powers.

And so, as opposition to war and military spending grows among masses of workers in America and Europe, the political and media establishment churns out endless, unsubstantiated accusations of Russian aggression in Ukraine and Russian hijacking of the US elections in an attempt to overwhelm and intimidate the public and whip up a war fever...."

Sean in Ottawa

Interesting question: Is Russia a real threat to the West.

One way to ask is to reverse the question becuase if one is a threat to the other then it is a threat in return unless it is powerless. We agree Russia is not powerless.

I think if we recognize that the West is a threat to Russia, which I think is obvious, then we must accept the reverse. The West has a history of being aggressively dangerous to Russia.

Would Russia be a threat to the West if it were not a threat to Russia? I suspect not as much if at all and that raises some uncomfortable questions.

Starting from a simple question you get a more complex answer.

I would also say that if the immediate disposition of the West were to be non-threatening, it would take some time before Russia woudl be able to trust it. So these countries remain a threat to each other. We can moralize and blame but let's not deny that one fact.


Daily Stormer, the Neo-Nazi website that was kicked off GoDaddy and Google, has found a new home in Russia


Yes, Trump called Putin to get them a new domain...

Before that:

Registrant Contact

Name: Contact Privacy Inc

Customer 1241625120

Mailing Address: 96 Mowat Ave, Toronto ON M4K3K1


New Nazi Site Moves To Dark Web

"Prominent neo-Nazi news site The Daily Stormer has apparently moved to the dark web after being denied domain registration from Google and GoDaddy. The site status page tweeted a link to the new site, which can only be accessed through the anonymizing service Tor..."


Neo-Nazi website The Daily Stormer has been booted from the Russian internet.


Searches Begin At Shut Russian Diplomatic Properties in US (and vid)

"Earlier, Russian embassy spokesman Nikolay Lakhonin told media that the searches at Russia's diplomatic facilities would start immediately after their being closed to personnel. The operation would be carried out under the auspices of the US State Department, he added.

On Saturday, Russia summoned the deputy chief of mission of the US Embassy in Moscow to lodge a note of protest over US plans to search the Russian trade mission, in Washington. Moscow said it considers inspections 'an aggressive action, which could also be used by US intelligence to orchestrate an anti-Russia provocation by planting compromising items."


Russian Diplomat Describes US Actions at Russian Mission As 'Example of Vandalism'

"US actions at the Russian trade mission in Washington have become a clear example of vandalism in the system of international relations, a senior Russian diplomat said on Saturday..."


Russia vs US Economic War: Who's Going To Be The Ultimate Loser?

"Trump signing this new sanctions bill will end up costing Americans and Europeans the future if I am right. If the Eurasian Union separates from the dollar, the world will certainly enter a time of dire crisis. We may soon witness a real bear in the world marketplace. One unwelcomed by Wall Street."


"The US invasion of Russia's diplomatic property in Washington is effectively an act of war. It will have serious consequences."


Washington Is Looking For An Escalation in Diplomatic Stand-Off With Russia

"...Imagine an alternative universe where US officials reacted with outrage  on Saturday after the Russian Foreign Ministry announced it was closing the US Consulate in Vladivostok and giving staff only 48 hours notice to evacuate. To compound matters, on Monday, Russia's FSB indicated its intention to carry out searches at the building on Tuesday afternoon. The raids would extend to trade missions in the capital, Moscow.

In Vladivostok, the operations won't be restricted to US consular offices in the far eastern city only but will also take place at the apartments of staff who live in the building and who have diplomatic immunity. To perform these searches, Russian authorities have ordered these staff members and their families, including children and babies, to leave their homes..."


CrossTalk Bullhorns: Breakdown (and vid)

"Have we passed the point of no return?"


Putin on US Establishment (and vid)

"Working with people who confuse Austria and Australia is hard...."


July 24—July 30: Counterrevolution rears its head


"The Atlantic Council to demand RT register as a foreign agent..."

Atlantic Council is a favourite hangout of Canada's Ukrainian Canadian Congress honchos and other Russia haters