Tuesday, October 14, 2008

P * U * T * I * N (The Movie)

So what have the Russians been up to lately? More or less the same as before. On 13.october five Russian fighters violated Georgian airspace flying over vast areas outside the rebel republics for a couple of hours, according to Civil Georgia. More:
Aslanbek Bulatsev, the head of the Federal Tax Service in Russia’s North Ossetian Republic, has been nominated as the prime minister of breakaway South Ossetia.The breakaway region’s Press and Information Committee reported on October 14 that the South Ossetian parliament was soon expected to approve the nomination. Yeah right. Independence my a***.
Oh, and yesterday the complete Norwegian Defense Committee visiting Cremlin was stopped by FSB. The FSB demanded that all photos taken by the TV2 journalist accompanying them should be deleted. According to Aftenposten, the former Norwegian MFA and now leader of the committee Jan Petersen enthusiastically uttered that “this is just like in the Soviet Union”, I have to mention that the TV team from the Norwegian Broadcasting were arrested two times the same day when covering the last presidential election in Moscow.
A couple of days ago Medvedev proudly detonated three ballistic missiles launched among other places the Barents Sea. It went smooth, and Medvedev seemed happy on the photo AP took of him on the nuclear sub.

And Island has got a new friend. I pictured the first scene in Coppolas The Goodfather once I read the news. “Be my friend…Godfather”. I guess the Islandics have to be more than desperate to get in depth with the Godfathers in Cremlin. Well, I think Island is a great catch if you look on it’s strategic position.
It would be unfair if I didn’t mention that Putin, the self proclaimed macho symbol has become a movie star too. This surprising move into fame and glamour is probably fuelled by his enormous success as tiger hunter and thus savior of numerous TV journalists present at the scene. Putins instruction video in karate is only surpassed by our most admired Walker Texas Ranger, Chuck Norris. Sarkozy was, according to LeFigaro so impressed that he suggested they should train karate together. It said nothing about Angela Merkel, but a wild guess is she will participate with stand in. Lets guess: Schroeder?
Finally, Lavrov has been making grunting noices again. I find this reptile rather tiresome, and thus don’t want to waste more bandwith than strictly necessary (someone must give this man a hobby or a gun).
Ok. That’s all for now. But I will say one thing: It’s better that they make some noise.We all know what toddlers are up to when they suddenly get silent and hide under a table or behind a chair.

5 Comments:

Anonymous DANIEL LYSENKO said...

Putin’s government, totally dominated by proud KGB personnel, is simply and pathologically incapable of telling the truth about anything at any time to anyone. It lies the way most people breathe.
And just as the Putin regime lies about foreign policy issues, it lies even more braznely about domestic problems. The Putin regime’s catastrophic failure in both economic stability and stability in the breakaway Caucus regions, the only two pillars upon which Putin’s claim to power rested. Instead of seeking to reform, the Putin regime is simply lying to the people of Russia about these failures, hiding them in the same way the USSR always did. Having crushed opposition political parties and independent media and local government, and having brutally cracked down on the Internet, the Kremlin is free to do so.
This is the path Russia’s “leaders” have chosen for the people of Russia, and this time the people cannot rationalize themselves as “victims” of the Kremlin. The Russian people themselves chose to fill the Kremlin with KGB spies, knowing full well there could be only one policy course pursued by such individuals. Not once since the fall of the USSR have Russians been governed by someone who was not part of the Soviet system, not once in fact have they even conducted a contested democratic election between two non-Communist political parties.
So how is the world to respond? No option is available other than the same response we gave to Russia the first time it behaved this way, when it was called the USSR. The USSR was ostracized from the community of nations, who began by assuming that not single words spoken by its rulers could be trusted. Standing alone, the USSR proved totally incapable of meeting the basic needs of its population, and bankruptcy ensued — followed by total national collapse.
And the world can take comfort from the fact that Putin’s Russia is a shadow of the USSR. If we act now to confront it, not allowing it to further consolidate its maligant grip on power, we can defeat the second coming of the KGB and put Russia on a path towards civilization.
We must do so not only for our own good, but for the good of the Russian people.

Friday, October 24, 2008 2:03:00 am  
Anonymous Frederick William Engdahl said...

Russia carries a heavy burden of political risk. This is the real economic legacy of the Putin years. Mr Putin does not understand the need for a degree of consistency between economic and foreign policy: or rather the reconciliation he has sought has been based on Russia’s energy windfall. If this has now ended, as seems likely, the key assumption of his politics – that Russia can use its energy power to boost its world power without paying much attention to the sensitivities of anyone but the Russian electorate – has been destroyed.

Russia needs to scale down its geopolitical ambition to its real weight – that of an emerging economy with only 3 per cent of the world’s gross domestic product and a quarter of America’s living standard. Also, it desperately needs to develop its human capital. The Putin era is over but Medvedev’s has not begun. This is the real Russian crisis.

Sunday, November 02, 2008 2:33:00 pm  
Anonymous The Other Russia said...

Thanks for the good work Eistein

Monday, November 03, 2008 3:18:00 pm  
Anonymous Oleg of Novgorod said...

Colin Powell quoted President George Bush saying, “When I looked in [Putin’s] eyes, I saw his soul.” Powell then quipped, “I look in his eyes and see the KGB.” (The actual Bush quote is: "I looked the man in the eye. I was able to get a sense of his soul.")

Obama Should Look Into Putin's Record, Not His Eyes
The U.S. has the chance for a fresh start on Russia relations.
Even as Barack Obama faces front-page issues like Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan, he will still have to find the time and courage to deal with a certain nuclear-armed autocracy that controls much of the world's oil and gas.
How should Mr. Obama deal with Russia's official president, Dmitry Medvedev, and Russia's real leader, Vladimir Putin? The choice is straightforward: Mr. Obama can treat them like fellow democratic leaders or like the would-be dictators that they are. His decision will tell the world a great deal about how seriously he takes his promises of change.
The Kremlin is very eager to be accepted as an equal. It apparently hopes that Mr. Obama will send the signal that democracy in Russia doesn't matter, that the Kremlin's crushing of the opposition and free speech is irrelevant, and that annexing pieces of neighboring Georgia is a local issue and not an international one.
Last week Mr. Medvedev was in France to meet with the leaders of Europe. French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who is also the current European Union president, tripped over his tongue to ingratiate himself and to present himself as a great peacemaker.
Mr. Sarkozy proudly announced that Russia had "mostly completed" its obligations to resolve the conflict with Georgia. But there is no way to "mostly" accept a dictatorship.
Russia's ruling elite has close allies among the European nations that Mr. Obama is expected to woo. I am far less concerned by Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's clownish remarks about Mr. Obama's "suntan" than about the way he so eagerly rushes to defend the commercial and political interests of Mr. Putin's clan.
Leaders like Messrs. Berlusconi and Sarkozy have no allegiance to the nation of Russia. Rather, they are defending Mr. Putin as a means to protect their personal and business relationships. Will Mr. Obama's desire to be the toast of Europe come at the expense of democracy in Russia? Mr. Obama must listen very carefully when European voices defend the Putin regime. Nearly always there is the hiss of gas or the bubbling of oil in the background.
Last weekend Mr. Medvedev was in Washington to continue his new charm offensive. But Mr. Obama must remember that he was selected by over 66 million votes while Mr. Medvedev needed only one -- that of his predecessor, Mr. Putin.
There is little doubt the most recent elections in Russia had even less value than those in Venezuela and Iran. Russia's own "supreme leader" cannot be treated as a true democratic representative if the new U.S. administration wishes to maintain any credibility on matters of human rights and freedom abroad. For a glimpse into Russia's "democracy," just look at its idea of a bailout. While Washington is worried about Main Street, in Russia the government wants to rescue the oligarchs -- at the expense of the Russian taxpayer.
In Mr. Medvedev's Nov. 5 speech in Moscow, he assured the mafia running the country that everything is business-as-usual despite the global financial crisis. He also talked about extending the presidential and parliamentary terms of office, even though the next Russian parliamentary elections aren't until 2011.
The speech sent two signals. First, that the Constitution, praised by Mr. Medvedev as the "cornerstone of law," can be twisted. This helps pave the way for Mr. Putin's return to his old Kremlin office, perhaps even before all the furniture has been moved out. Equally important, it says that Messrs. Medvedev and Putin aren't going anywhere until they are forced to leave.
In a Nov. 7 meeting of senior officials, Mr. Medvedev instructed the interior minister to crush any demonstrators "exploiting the crisis" as extremists and criminals. If the EU has "mostly" ignored bloodshed in Georgia, would they accept it in Russia as well?
The collapsing Russian economy precipitated Mr. Medvedev's new batch of threats. The vast majority of Russians, who haven't shared the trough with Mr. Putin's elites over the past decade, are realizing that they never will. When Mr. Medvedev took office he said that Russia would become a global financial center and that the ruble would become a reserve currency of choice. But with oil nearing $50 a barrel, the charade of a strong and stable Russia is over. The ruble is becoming a reserve currency -- in Russia. With so many aspects of life in Russia deteriorating simultaneously, the regime has to squeeze harder to keep control.
Each day decreases the likelihood of a quiet transition of power later on. As John F. Kennedy said, "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable." Such talk about the fall of the Putin regime is not just wishful thinking. Remember all the experts who failed to anticipate the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Do not believe that the damage from a violent fall would be limited to within Russia's borders. Gazprom and its ilk have many allies in the Western companies and administrations that currently serve as the Kremlin's enablers. There is also the issue of Russia's vast nuclear arsenal and large, though impoverished, military.
Mr. Medvedev's posturing about the supposed threat of NATO expansion -- and about deploying missiles near the Polish border in response to the U.S. missile shield -- are part of his plan to get Western leaders to leave him alone so that he can continue his looting. Mr. Obama must quickly make clear that he will not tolerate this. He cannot repeat his predecessor's mistake and look into Mr. Putin's eyes instead of looking at his record.
Mr. Obama's character is already being tested. He will fail unless he labels the Putin dictatorship correctly from the start. If he does, Mr. Obama might even be able to help bring hope and change to an entirely new constituency: 142 million Russians.
Mr. Kasparov, leader of The Other Russia coalition, is a contributing editor of The Wall Street Journal.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008 4:48:00 pm  
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