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Diplomatic Realities

By Mike Cunningham On August 19th, 2012 at 5:52 pm

Watching the balcony charade at the Ecuadorian Embassy, where the political pygmy which is the accused rapist Julian Assange primped and posed before the t.v. cameras of the world: and I pondered on the fate of another ‘prisoner of conscience’, a real man this time, whose memory has been virtually obliterated by time and the demands of a liberal media who do not like being reminded of the harsh truths of recent history.

Does the name Cardinal Mindzenty ring a far-away bell in your memories? It should, because he became the figurehead for all that was seen and known to be right in the Europe of the hell-pits which had been constructed by the minions of Stalin’s Russian armoured bullies in the vassal States surrounding Soviet Russia. Mindzenty, himself an ordinary priest who, ordained in 1915 and consecrated bishop of Vesprem in 1944, was appointed archbishop of Esztergom, the primate of Hungary, the following year. In 1946 Pope Pius XII made him a cardinal. Controversy and arrest were nothing new to Mindzenty, as he was first arrested in 1919 for condemning a State takeover of Catholic schools, and again in 1944 for incitement against the Nazis. When the Soviets seized power in Hungary, and installed their puppet government, the first name on the ‘arrest list’ was that of the prickly Cardinal, as they knew that he would not bow down before the false gods of Communism and the State. He was tortured and ‘brainwashed’, confessing to the fabricated ‘crimes’ he had been accused of, but the pictures flashed around the globe bore the lie; as the strong-featured man who had walked tall into prison, had become a pale, shattered ghost whose very eyes spoke volumes of the punishments dealt him by the torturers of the AVH.

He was freed from prison in the 1956 Hungarian uprising, and sought refuge in the American Embassy, where he remained until 1971, protected by Diplomatic Privilege. He travelled to Rome, thence on to Vienna, where he lived in exile until his death in 1975. His presence in that Embassy building was a constant thorn in the side of the Communists, but he refused to budge, and the Communists never dared to even threaten to break the boundaries of Diplomatic privilege: unlike a Yorkshire-bred moron who masquerades as Her Majesty’s Secretary of State, living in a dream world all of his own, who seemed to think that by threatening to remove Diplomatic Status from a Knightsbridge building, he could remove a thorn in his own foot!

and now it can be revealed…

By Mike Cunningham On March 16th, 2012 at 12:03 pm

When the Benghazi Libyans rebelled, and began the long march, aided by NATO, which ended with Gaddaffi dead, some of his family dead alongside him but more escaping to boltholes such as Niger, a few of the excesses of this madman and his dictatorship became evident. The marble-clad palaces, the weaponry stores, the escape routes, the huge bank balances; all were as forecast. But not many could know, as has now been revealed that Hannibal Gaddaffi, frustrated that he couldn’t order a cruise-liner to sail at his convenience, decided to order his own. The cruise company’s spokesman stated ““They had great difficulty understanding that cruise ship holidays are sold a year in advance, so there’s no way you could ever find availability of a cruise vessel at the notice he gave,”

Shipbuilders STX France had landed the $100 million order, which included such absolute necessities as its own shark tank, gold taps, ( which one just cannot do without, naturally) along with marble everythings, ( one cannot walk upon ordinary carpet, you understand; carpets are for the little people!), and after the new regime took over, the cash flow stopped, and the order was abruptly cancelled.

If the Arab Spring had not occurred; just imagine, you are in a Mediterranean port, and this well-dressed foreign bloke says “Would you like to visit my yacht?” and you said “Yes please!”

 

Ask, and you shall receive!

By ATWadmin On March 8th, 2010 at 10:45 am

The American ‘Shock and Awe’ onslaught on the dictator Hussein’s Nation of Iraq, aided and abetted by British air and ground forces, swiftly completed the removal of this malevolent maniac from power, but the question is asked all the time; what were the war aims? What was the end game? 

I would like to dissect and discover the true motives for sending a huge mechanized army, so superior in every way possible to the rag-tag forces which were entirely suitable for repressing a quiescent people, but totally unsuitable against the forces which were ranged against them. As I said, I would like to, but the clouds of ‘secret’ stamps and ‘confidential’ documents, which even if they still existed, would be hidden well away from genuine scrutiny.

We have heard and seen the cover-ups and the white-washes, such as the Hutton Inquiry, and the farce which is the ongoing Chilcott inquiry, but has anyone ever seen a more devastating document than this as a reply to the statements that ‘he was a bad man’ or ‘regime change was needed to bring stability’. Ask Marwa Riyadh if she has a better life in a ‘Democratic Iraq’, and draw speedily back while she answers you with a quiet venom.

You put your left foot in….

By ATWadmin On February 6th, 2010 at 8:57 am

 

As with most commentators, I truly relish the times when we get things right, and are thus able to brag that we saw it first.

Not that my few words would have had any effect whatsoever upon the practices of the most successful Information Technology Company this world has seen since computers became a household reality, but when one is able to predict, at least partly, the results of connivance of Google with the Red Chinese, in order to sell their services and advertising in that truly awful dictatorship.

We see the start of the withdrawal from mainland China of Google, but not before they saw every promise, made to them by the blood-soaked rulers of that truly unfortunate Nation, broken or ignored.

The question which must be asked of Sergey Brin and Larry Page is not whether they regret their dalliance with a bunch of Communist dictators, but whether they should have taken that step in the first place?

HERE IS HOW WE TREAT VETERANS…

By ATWadmin On May 14th, 2008 at 6:32 am

Get this. 

A council refused to collect rubbish from a 95-year-old war veteran who is nearly blind – because he put a ketchup bottle in the wrong bin. Lenny Woodward, a former Desert Rat who has lived in the same house for 58 years, was confused by a new regime of fortnightly collections and rigid recycling rules. Residents have a blue wheelie bin for cans and cardboard, a green box for glass and a black bin for other waste. Mr Woodward made the mistake of putting the ketchup bottle and a coffee jar in the blue bin when they should have gone in the green box.

 

And then the classic…..

When his daughter phoned up the Council to explain she was told "rules have to be obeyed".

Mmm–I have heard that line before. Just following orders…..sickening little Hitlers.

They can shove their petty mean spirited recycling, I’d sooner see them recycled.

The Other Side Of Vladimir Paranoid

By ATWadmin On December 21st, 2007 at 5:45 am

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Putin, the Kremlin power struggle and the $40bn fortune

An unprecedented battle is taking place inside the Kremlin in advance of Vladimir Putin’s departure from office, the Guardian has learned, with claims that the president presides over a secret multibillion-dollar fortune.

Rival clans inside the Kremlin are embroiled in a struggle for the control of assets as Putin prepares to transfer power to his hand-picked successor, Dmitry Medvedev, in May, well-placed political observers and other sources have revealed.

At stake are billions of dollars in assets belonging to Russian state-run corporations. Additionally, details of Putin’s own personal fortune, reportedly hidden in Switzerland and Liechtenstein, are being discussed for the first time.

The claims over the president’s assets surfaced last month when the Russian political expert Stanislav Belkovsky gave an interview to the German newspaper Die Welt. They have since been repeated in the Washington Post and the Moscow Times, with speculation over the fortune appearing on the internet.

Citing sources inside the president’s administration, Belkovsky claims that after eight years in power Putin has secretly accumulated more than $40bn (£20bn). The sum would make him Russia’s – and Europe’s – richest man.

In an interview with the Guardian, Belkovsky repeated his claims that Putin owns vast holdings in three Russian oil and gas companies, concealed behind a “non-transparent network of offshore trusts”.

Putin “effectively” controls 37% of the shares of Surgutneftegaz, an oil exploration company and Russia’s third biggest oil producer, worth $20bn, he says. He also owns 4.5% of Gazprom, and “at least 75%” of Gunvor, a mysterious Swiss-based oil trader, founded by Gennady Timchenko, a friend of the president’s, Belkovsky alleges.

Asked how much Putin was worth, Belkovsky said: “At least $40bn. Maximum we cannot know. I suspect there are some businesses I know nothing about.” He added: “It may be more. It may be much more.

“Putin’s name doesn’t appear on any shareholders’ register, of course. There is a non-transparent scheme of successive ownership of offshore companies and funds. The final point is in Zug [in Switzerland] and Liechtenstein. Vladimir Putin should be the beneficiary owner.”

Given the situation of Anna Politkovskaya, Luke Harding, Stanislav Belkovsky, Yulia Latynina and others had better develop a healthy sense of paranoia.

Read it all at The Guardian.

See also Why The Chekist Mindest Matters and Putin’s Russia.

H/T The JammieWearingFool

Also at JammieWearingFool

Democracy At Work

By ATWadmin On December 18th, 2007 at 2:21 am

When discussing the G8 and the Soviet Union today’s Russia during an interview six months ago, Estonian president Toomas Hendrik Ilves offered that, …if you’re not a member of the G8, it’s not difficult to call for anyone to be thrown out. But I certainly wouldn’t call it the organization of industrialized democracies anymore.

Interviewer: What would you call it?

President Ilves: Seven industrial democracies and one country brought in for reasons that have lost their relevance.

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Putin to be PM in future Russia government

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Monday he was ready to become prime minister if his close ally Dmitry Medvedev succeeds him, giving Putin a way to keep a grip on power after he leaves the Kremlin.

A 42-year-old lawyer with no political base of his own, Medvedev is virtually certain to win next March’s presidential election since most Russians will vote for whoever the highly popular Putin endorses.

“If Russian citizens express their confidence in Dmitry Medvedev and elect him as the country’s president, I will be ready to head the government,” Putin told a congress of his United Russia party held near Moscow’s Red Square.

“(We) shouldn’t be ashamed or afraid of transferring the key powers of the country, the destiny of Russia to the hands of such a man,” Putin added in his speech.

You’ll get no argument from the Koslings, Putie. They know democracy when they see it.

Medvedev, 42, was later adopted by the congress as United Russia’s presidential candidate. Delegates voted 478-1 in a sober, Soviet-style ceremony held without debate.

Is there any other way???

In his brief acceptance speech, Medvedev listed priorities such as strengthening Russia’s position in the world, preserving the Russian nation, looking after the young and the old.

All this is in Vladimir Putin’s strategy. I will be guided by this strategy, if I am elected president,” Medvedev said.

“But carrying out an idea can only be successful with the participation of its author. I have no doubt that in the future Vladimir Vladimirovich (Putin) will use all his resources, all his influence in Russia and abroad for the benefit of Russia.”

[….]

Putin praised Medvedev as a man whose “main principles in life are the interests of its government and its citizens.”

And pleasing his master.

He also announced a big pay rise of 14 percent for public sector workers, which will come into effect on February 1, just over a month before the election. The military will get 18 percent.

Of course, the pay increases have nothing to do with buying loyalty and votes for Putie’s weak sister.

In a further sign of Putin’s intention to keep a grip on power next year, Russian media reported that Putin could send the Kremlin chief of staff to run Medvedev’s election campaign.

[….]

Read it all at Reuters

Too busy shilling for the Palis, the administration’s ‘Russian expert’ was unavailable for comment.

UPDATE: Although speculation about Putie’s future began last June, Vladimir Paranoid’s announcement about becoming prime minister after Medvedev’s ‘elected’ in March, experts were surprised.

Experts, schmexperts.

Also at JammieWearingFool

Such a mensch, Sarkozy

By ATWadmin On December 11th, 2007 at 2:41 pm

Nuclear deal signed as Sarkozy hosts Kadhafi


During Kadhafi’s highest-profile foreign trip to Paris, an historic deal has been signed between the two countries
France announced plans to sell nuclear reactors to Libya as well as 10 billion euros of trade deals, as President Nicolas Sarkozy welcomed Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi on Monday for a five-day visit.
Kadhafi arrived earlier in Paris on his highest-profile foreign trip since his return to international respectability four years ago, which has drawn protests from French rights groups and the government’s own rights minister.
Travelling with a delegation of several hundred people Kadhafi — who last visited the French capital in 1973 — was driven in a white limousine from the airport straight to a meeting with Sarkozy.
Later at the Elysee Palace, the two countries announced the nuclear cooperation accord and some 3.2 billion euros (4.7 billion dollars) of contracts for European planemaker Airbus — for 21 aircraft purchased by Libyan Airlines and Afriqiyah Airways.
Paris and Tripoli agreed to work together to develop the “peaceful use of nuclear energy“, including “the supply of one or more nuclear reactors for the desalinisation of sea water” and uranium exploration and exploitation.
The accord follows a memorandum signed in Tripoli in July during a visit by Sarkozy, immediately after Libya agreed to release six Bulgarian medics jailed on charges of infecting children with HIV/AIDS.
[….]

Read it all at Expatica

Adolph Eichmann is laughing his ass off.

Also at JammieWearingFool

The Road To Democracy

By ATWadmin On December 6th, 2007 at 4:49 pm

No More ‘Troubles’ Under Putin

Russia has its own path to democracy, one that is determined by the country’s long history, President Vladimir Putin and his entourage frequently assert. To understand their vision of Russia’s future, one must pay attention to their use of the past and to the national myths they create and promote.

Russia is engaged in a political transition now that, even Kremlin insiders admit, is virtually a “crisis.” The celebration of People’s Unity Day on November 4 and the 90th anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution on November 7 have brought to the forefront crises of the past and models for emerging from them. The pro-Kremlin Unified Russia party and the state media have labored overtime in recent weeks to reduce these historical events to easily understood elements — chaos, disunity, internal and external enemies, violence, and famine — and to emphasize that Russia survived them only by rallying around a strong, authoritarian leader-for-life.

Historical Precedent

People’s Unity Day is a three-year-old holiday that marks the liberation in 1612 of Moscow from Polish occupation and the end of a decade and a half of discord known by the ominous Russian phrase “Smutnoye vremya,” the Time of Troubles. The “smuta,” or trouble, was set off when the royal line of Ivan the Terrible came to an end and the country’s political elites began a ruthless battle among themselves for power. The period was characterized by factional infighting, famine, and foreign occupation, nearly leading to the collapse of the Russian state. It came to an end only in 1613, when the nobility chose one of their own, Mikhail Romanov, at a Grand National Assembly, founding the dynasty that would rule Russia until 1917. Before the 17th century was out, Mikhail Romanov’s grandson, Peter the Great, was in power and the country that had been on its knees was on the verge of becoming a global power.

The new People’s Unity Day holiday has developed in two directions in its short history. On the one hand, it is a cause for annual semi-sanctioned “Russia-for-the-Russians” actions, events that serve to remind the public that the country’s unity is fragile and that violent confrontation is lurking close to the surface. On the other hand, the holiday is marked by widespread demonstrations in support of the Kremlin and the strong central government. The Unified Russia party has begun the practice of sending representatives into schools and other institutions to make sure that the horrors of the Time of Troubles remain vivid and the lessons of unity and authoritarianism are not forgotten.

[…]

In Praise Of The Iron Fist

The logic of the analogy between the Bolshevik Revolution and the Time of Troubles leads to the conclusion that Soviet dictator Josef Stalin was the strong, authoritarian leader-for-life who pulled the country out of chaos and, through a far-sighted program of industrialization and collectivization, created a country that was capable of withstanding the onslaught of Nazi Germany and of competing in the Cold War for decades. The Kremlin, of course, is wary about direct praise of Stalin, largely because of how such statements are seen in the West. In addition, the means by which Stalin came to power — infighting, betrayal, show trials, and persecution — are clearly less savory than the image of the Grand National Assembly that elevated Mikhail Romanov on a wave of national unity.

However, Putin has made enough overtly pro-Stalin statements over the years to have lured away virtually all the Stalinists from the Communist Party. He has restored Stalin-era state symbols and has stated directly that the country has no need to feel guilty about its past. During Putin’s years in power, Stalin’s reputation has grown steadily, with more and more Russians stating that he played “a positive role” in Russian history. State television commentator Mikhail Leontyev wrote in “Profil” this month: “What Stalin inherited from the Bolsheviks as an object of state — in fact, imperial — restoration was an absolutely Asiatic formation that could only be managed by Asiatic methods — literally those of Genghis Khan. That is, by using ‘the masses’ as raw material, fuel for the historical process. There were no other means for managing that country, for saving it, for securing it in the midst of an aggressively oriented environment.”

[….]

Read it all at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty

Also at JammieWearingFool

Now They’re Concerned

By ATWadmin On December 3rd, 2007 at 11:44 pm

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‘The West Must Distance Itself from Putin’s Swindle’

The European press reacted on Monday to Vladimir Putin’s landslide victory with a mix of criticism and, in a few instances, praise. But most papers agree that the power struggle within the Kremlin is only just beginning.

The liberal Danish daily Politiken writes:

“As expected, Russian President Vladimir Putin garnered an overwhelming election victory. Even before (his victory), he claimed he would be given the ‘moral right’ to continue to determine his country’s political course. … After his victory he spoke of a festive atmosphere. But it has an ugly downside. Neither the campaign nor the election was deserving of this description. It was the most unfair election since the fall of communism. The state abused its power in the media. Opposition voices were suppressed. … If the West doesn’t strongly distance itself from this historic election manipulation, which one could at best describe as a swindle, it will muddy our own democracies. And we would also be abandoning Russians who haven’t yet buried their hopes for democracy in their country.”

The Rome daily La Repubblica comments:

“In his years in office, Russian President Vladimir Putin has succeeded in resurrecting the myth of Russian power that stems from an era before the Russian Revolution and the Soviet Union. The Russians felt the need for this resurrection as a way of forgetting the humiliations that came along with the collapse of the Soviet empire and the tumultuous years under Boris Yeltsin. Vladimir Putin is the man who revived it.”

Switzerland’s Neue Zürcher Zeitung writes:

“To some extent, it remains astonishing how nervously and aggressively Putin and his army of propagandists have reacted to every form of criticism or opposition to the Kremlin.

Nothing astonishing about it mein Herr. Paranoid people have enemies to, ya know!

No one seriously questions the fact that the economic boom that has happened during Putin’s terms has made him even more popular. And he and his vehicle of power, the United Russia party, likely could have gained a solid lead in the Duma election wiithout having to resort to methods that included the application of massive pressure and manipulation in the run-up to the election.”

“It appears that potentates like Putin — with their pronounced autocratic tendencies, a tradition that is deeply rooted in Russian history — are incapable of trusting the democratic persuasiveness of their arguments and in some respects their formidable achievements. The old Lenin saying that “trust is good, but control is better,” seemed to be the central vision of the man pulling the strings inside the Kremlin during this election.”

Italy’s Corriere della Sera writes:

“Vladimir Putin can book an election triumph, based on true endorsement, but it is also the result of excessively deployed authority. And that’s why the true battle for power is just beginning in Russia. After all, it was precisely this Kremlin chief who turned Sunday’s election into the first round of the Russia presidential election in March 2008, knowing full well that he would soon have to change offices. A plebiscite mandate was supposed to guarantee his ‘moral right‘ to remain Russia’s leader, even if he is in an office other than the presidency. To that end, the Russians have pushed aside allegations of election manipulation and have instead given their approval to Putin.”

The liberal Vienna daily Der Standard writes:

“Will the Kremlin chief’s words be followed by corresponding actions after he leaves the office of president? If he decides to continue to exercise his enormous remaining influence through the United Russia party (with its inevitable majority in the newly elected parliament), we will see if he is serious about what he has been saying. But if he allows himself to be named prime minister after leaving the office of president, circumventing the constitution, we will know that, in truth, he is merely seeking personal power.

Ya think?

A weakening of the office of the president in Russia, the only institution that is vested with political legitimacy, will lead the country on a path to chaos. The practice of changing the playing rules in order to retain power will also remain after the all-powerful man leaves the political stage, but the superficial stability of his leadership will not.”

Zurich’s Tages-Anzeiger writes:

“There is little doubt that the Russian president will interpret this result as a vote of confidence — and that it also justifies his desire to remain in power. If he is no longer able to remain president in spring, then another function will be found for him — be it prime minister, head of parliament or in the role of a ‘national leader’. But Putin’s victory is a false one. The allegations of manipulation brought by the opposition are a dark shadow hanging heavy over the election result. Still, Putin has no reason to fear any Ukranian-style Orange Revolution. At the same time, he shouldn’t feel overly secure, because a government that has to gain a victory through undemocratic means, is not as firmly in the saddle as the election result might lead one to believe.”

The right-liberal Bulgarian newspaper Dnewnik writes:

“Russian and Western election observers were unable to hide their shock on Sunday over the absolute pressure imposed on the vote in the giant country by the Putin administration. … It was exercised regularly and transparently enough that one could say that Putin held true to his promise of honesty. It’s not his problem that other people imagined a different outcome — probably like the European leaders who live in a complete fantasy world with their dream of drawing Russian natural gas without Putin’s political policies also flowing through the pipes.”

Funny how a newspaper in a former Soviet slave-state understands what Gazprom – Vladimir Paranoid’s ambassador to Europe – is all about.

The liberal Romanian daily Evenimentul Zilei writes:

“Elections and free-market economies are viewed as a symbol of recovery, and Vladimir Putin’s iron hand as a necessary phase during the transition from post-communist chaos to a liberal democracy. But Russia has destroyed a number of myths about democracy and confirmed the failure of the recipes and frameworks that the West has applied to transition countries. … Russia’s economic strength, which has in no way buttressed democratic transformation, has instead empowered Moscow’s oppressive regime. In Russia, the traditional authoritarian model has been restored using the tools of capitalism, and the Russians appear to be contented with that.”

The State Department’s Russian expert was unavailable for comment.

Via Spiegel International.

See also Riding The Cronies To Victory.

Also at JammieWearingFool