March 16 (alternately 18th, according to some) marked the four-year anniversary of the 2014 referendum in Crimea that resulted in reuniting with Russia.
Yes, this is longish, but I believe that if it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing right.
In his March 13, 2018 op-ed at RT John Wight explains the reasoning behind his ‘Crimea is Russian, the matter is finished’.
He writes that not only is London peddling revisionist history, but that economic sanctions on Russia must continue until Crimea ‘returns to Ukrainian sovereignty’. On a similar note, the EU Council is calling on member states to do the same, but they add ‘the city of Sebastapol’ as well. Yep, I hunted down the proclamation, and here’s part of it:
“The ongoing militarisation of the peninsula continues to impact the security situation in the Black Sea region [home of the sole warm water port where the Russian Fleet & Navy is anchored, and that NATO is jonesin’ for]. In violation of international humanitarian law, Russian citizenship and conscription in the armed forces of the Russian Federation have been imposed on Crimean residents.
Since the illegal annexation by the Russian Federation, the human rights situation in the Crimean peninsula has deteriorated further. Residents of the peninsula face systematic restrictions of fundamental freedoms, such as freedom of expression, religion or belief and association and the right to peaceful assembly.”, etc.
But back to John Wight:
He reminds us that the Crimea’s status hadn’t been brought about by Russia, but the Feb. 14 illegal coup in Ukraine that ousted Viktor Yanukovytch, and was underpinned by Western governments. Hello, Miz Kagan-Nuland; hello, Geoffrey Pyatt; hello O-bomba!
After reminding readers about how many of the 2014 Maidan putsch’s government supporters were neo-Nazis, he cites this:
“It is false to claim that Russia annexed Crimea. The Russian troops and military personnel that were present in Crimea during the Maidan coup in Kiev were there legally, under the terms of the 2010 Kharkiv Accords, agreed between Moscow and Kiev with respect to the status of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet.
The ensuing Crimean referendum in March 2014 restored the democratic rights of the region’s 2.2 million residents – rights that had been unceremoniously undermined and violated by the February coup. Thus it was a referendum conducted in extraordinary circumstances – circumstances created by an illegal coup with the open and active connivance of Western governments, including the British government, motivated by malign intent.”
Two things from the Guardian’s 2010 Kharkiv Accords page that I hadn’t known were that i) ‘Yanukovych said the lease on Russia’s Black Sea fleet that was due to expire in 2017 will be prolonged for 25 years, until 2042 at least.’, and that ii) Yanukovych’s predecessor, Viktor Yushchenko, had vowed to eject Russia’s Black Sea fleet from the port of Sevastopol, arguing that its presence was an affront to Ukraine’s sovereignty and a destabilising factor in Crimea, a majority ethnic Russian region with a strong pro-Soviet mood.’
And as Wight says, clearly London has proven that it no interest in the people of Ukraine, or else it wouldn’t have inflamed the ‘riotous’ events in Maidan.
But on this Maidan putsch fourth anniversary week also comes ‘All Fire and Fury in Ukraine’, Greg Maybury, March 13th, 2018, disidentvoice.org introducing Oliver Stone produced ‘Ukraine on Fire’, this is the trailer; the full hour and a half version is here.
He calls the film a vital counter to the MSM agitprop, evangelist double-speak, etc., but also ‘an essential historical document and one of the most important, insightful political documentaries of recent times. It may also be one of the most portentous.’ He brings in boatloads of related links to exposés but for now, a few snippets:
“It underscores moreover Russia’s seemingly inexhaustible forbearance with the U.S., which, sans any rational, coherent geopolitical basis for doing so, has been tested beyond reasonable endurance or expectation. This point is rendered especially palpable during the interviews Stone conducts with Russian president Vladimir Putin for UOF. (This is not to mention the actual The Putin Interviews).”
“The narrative encompassed by UOF is by extension a serious indictment on President Barack Obama’s handling of the Ukraine situation and his role in the creation of this singularly unholy mess — a prime exemplar of just how chaotic, dysfunctional, indeed war-like, were in large part the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize winner’s foreign policies. Ukraine on Fire attests unequivocally just how far removed the reality of Obama’s tenure was from his campaign rhetoric.”
“…over one year after the Great Black Hope left office, that situation to all intents prevails, with few harboring any optimism things are going to get better anytime soon. In fact, ominously, quite the opposite scenario is unfolding. Earlier this year, Gilbert Doctorow reported that a new draft law adopted by the Ukrainian Parliament and awaiting president Petro Poroshenko’s signature, threatens to escalate the Ukrainian conflict into a full-blown war, pitting nuclear-armed Russia against the United States and NATO. “Due to dire economic conditions,” Doctorow says, “Poroshenko and other government officials in Kiev have become deeply unpopular, and with diminished chances for electoral success may see war as politically advantageous.”
He next brings in an April 1, 2018 editorial from orientalreview.org asking ‘Ukraine’s future Nazi leader?’
Writing that present-day Ukraine is reminiscent of 1920s Germany, poor governance, betrayed hopes, and crumbling incomes paired with rising prices, the populace is seeking an authoritarian strong hand, due to rising dissatisfaction in the Chocolate King. Embedded is this video that is apparently from Oct. 23, 2017.
“And a man like that already exists in this destitute and disintegrating country. Andriy Biletsky, the commander of the Azov Battalion who is known to his comrades-in-arms as the “White Führer,” is making an ever-bigger name for himself in the Ukrainian parliament.”
It’s a long and difficult read of the recent narrative of related neo-Nazi groups like Right Sector and other (Stepan) Banderist groups, with photos and a video of the Azov Youth Squad, but apparently Biletsky is chameleon enough to be willing and able to hide his Aryan white pride when needed, and is finding acceptance in some strange corners.
Doctorow also writes that another ominous sign in that recently the US has provided military trainers on the ground, has budgeted $350 million for security assistance to Ukraine, and has now begun shipping ‘lethal weapons’ including Javelin anti-tank missile systems free of charge to Kiev.
Maybury links to Robert Bridge’s Feb. 26 2018 ‘Endgame Russia: NATO Sprawl Invades Eastern Europe, No More Illusions’ at strategicculture.org
The first paragraph sets the stage quite well; I won’t bring any more if it, you may not even need to read more of it, as it’s so very familiar, if not the particulars.
“In the past, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) justified its militarization of large swaths of Eastern Europe by pointing to the omnipresent threat of terrorism, or some ‘rogue’ foreign state, inherently understood to be Iran. Today the mask has slipped and it is no longer denied that NATO’s primary target is Russia.”
But back to his homage not only to the film, but to the late great Robert Parry of Consortium News, a couple bits:
“Whether one has already seen Ukraine on Fire or not, it now comes complete with a hitherto unexpected layer of revelation and significance, given that the late Consortium News founder and editor Robert Parry is interviewed at length therein. Parry’s appearance in the film, poignantly as it turns out, underscores the man’s trailblazing achievements and his unimpeachable stature within the alternative, independent media cosmos.
For those folks constantly on the lookout for exemplars of journalism’s fundamental values, his input into the film’s narrative [given his exhaustive reporting and commentary on Ukraine and Russia over the years, challenging the MSM narratives and accusations without substance] is a reminder to us all just how much his political insight and measured analysis will be missed. It goes without saying that those values have themselves been missing in action for some time in our mainstream media, as Parry himself – to his eternal chagrin – was all too aware. This is a state of affairs to which he spent the last two decades of his life exposing via the Consortium News masthead.
So much so it seems, there was even some hint (by the man himself as it turns out) that the stress and pressure of being a media outlier had taken its toll and may have been the catalyst for the strokes he had in the weeks before his untimely death.”
Maybury then spends a dozen long paragraphs on his own coverage of the never resolved [save for the Bedlamites among us] shooting down of Maylasian flight MH-17 over Ukraine with 38 of his fellow Aussies on board, as well as Parry’s coverage as compared to the conventional wisdom in the papers of record, scribes to the Western Empire, let’s say. Sound familiar?
Believe it or not, there’s much, much more, but I’ll just say ‘Amen’ to both Greg Maybury and Robert Parry (may he keep kickin’ ass and takin names in the afterlife), and move on to the film itself.
On August 17, 2017, TRNN’s Aaron Maté had interviewed Igor Lopatonok, the Ukrainian director of the film in ‘How the US Helped Set ‘Ukraine on Fire’; The documentary “Ukraine on Fire” from producer Oliver Stone tells the hidden story of how the ongoing conflict began, including the pivotal US role
A few bits from the transcript at the link above showing what else is in the full documentary past the initial transcript of the trailer:
Aaron Mate: So that’s a phone call between Victoria Nuland, at the time the Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs and the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, and they’re talking about Arseniy Yatseniuk, who they call Yats. And, low and behold, he became the leader of Ukraine after Yanukovych was deposed, not long after this phone call. So, Igor, talk about what is going on here.
Igor Lopatonok: That’s a very advanced operation. Who dispatch in Ukraine to organize the coup, to organize the regime change and talking to his supervisor. That’s very, very … I think that’s Russian Secret Service who intercept that call, and they make it available public, show in the light how to … how United States official just floating the result of coup d’etat in the country.
Aaron Mate: For you have interviews where Oliver Stone, who executive produced the movie, he interviews Yanukovych and also Putin. And when he talks to Yanukovych, Yanukovych tells him that his point man in the U.S., who he was talking to, was Biden.
Igor Lopatonok: Correct.
Aaron Mate: And he suggests very strongly that Biden was basically playing a double game with him. He was telling him one thing but doing another.
Igor Lopatonok: First of all, Biden’s son was involved in a business in Ukraine. He held a position in the board of company that’s named Burisma. Now that company accumulate up to 40 percent of all oil and gas exploitation in Ukraine as well, so Biden have an interest. And when Victoria Nuland delivering this speech, about $5 billion what the State Department United States spent on the promoting of democracy in Ukraine for the years. She talking on the ground of [Chevron], when Chevron tried to make the Shell oil pumping in Donetsk area.
So that’s follow the money rule working all the time. So Ukraine as usual was not only political battlefield, but also someplace when oil and gas involved. And don’t forget about pipeline from Russia to Europe was going through Ukraine, was giving them very big leverage against Russia.
So, that’s the big and complex situation. But that situation happened, and situation violently blow up. And is no way, no military solution for that war. And there’s a legit civil war going on in Ukraine and 10,000 people already killed. And it is no way, and only Minsk agreement when they tried to prevent the Ukrainians from attacking that. Because you cannot say there’s 3 million terrorists living in my country. This is your people who live in Donetsk. You cannot blame them to be terrorists because it’s like woman, older man, the kids …
(cross-posted at caucus99percent.com)