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02 November 2017

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outthere

So glad not to be in Ukraine
or downwind of Ukraine
I remember Chernobyl so well, my friend from Vienna was visiting me, and she did not want to go home.
read the linked article
Get Ready for a New Chernobyl in Ukraine (updated Nov 1, 2017)
https://orientalreview.org/2017/10/16/get-ready-for-a-new-chernobyl-in-ukraine/

Account Deleted

I must take issue with one of your points Patrick: Propaganda. A good friend of mine, who was brought up in Minsk, did his military service near Odessa (at a missile silo..) and now lives in Paris, has described propaganda and lies in the Russian media to me as "even worse than in Soviet times".

Large parts of the Western media does lie, belittle and twist all things Russian. But I'm sure you didn't intend to give the impression that their Russian counterparts are now shining examples of unbiased reporting re the West - or indeed on domestic matters. We are some way off yet from "a complete reversal" I think.

Patrick Armstrong

False comparison. No one is a "shining example" of anything this side of heaven. But I stand by it that in Russia it is far easier to get at reality than in the West. I challenge you to find an example from the Russian media, BTW.

Laura

Patrick and Barbara Ann -- Have you seen this? https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/11/2/16588964/america-epistemic-crisis

I think we are all in an epistemic crisis and our way of life and freedom of thought is at stake.

mike

I'm with Barbara Ann. The West is co-equally guilty with Russia. Does anybody here actually believe that the Russians have given up Dezinformatsiya? If so, I have a bridge I want to sell you. Yes, I realize they probably got the idea from perfidious Albion. And we in the USA have done it too, and not only against the Russians. But the KGB perfected it. There is no way that the FSB stopped just because of organizational name changes.

Tom

@Barbara Ann@ Patrick Armstrong I believe Putin has realized that total conformity of mass media will only scare off intellectuals. Soviet times are over. They have adopted the Western system. TV is tightly controlled. But print not. You can go to any kiosk in Moscow and buy perdiodicals highly critical of the government. But who reads them? No more than 10% of the population. The internet is more problematic. To me it seems as if the government is still hesitating whether to crack down.
So if you want to you can get yourself informed in Russia no worse than in the US. Just don´t turn on the TV or read any high circulation periodicals with simpler language. The high brow stuff though is as good or even better than in the US. TV is the same like in the USA.
The biggest difference between the US and Russia is in the audience. Russians are more suspicious of authority. No doubt due to bad experience. The US mass media still has the trust of the majority of citizens. Therefore US media lays it on thick whereas in Russia they are more subtle. Their persuasion techniques are more underhanded. And more effective it seems to me. Also no doubt the elites are acting more in Russias national interest whereas I find it very difficult to sense any advantage for the average US citizen in what Beltway bubble inhabitants are doing in the rest of the world.
On balance I believe that especially fly over inhabitants don´t know much about the world but have - in my experience - an instinctive grasp of the lies they are being subjected to. Hence Trump and kudos to the good instincts of those much belittled deplorables. What Trump does now is a different matter...

Patrick Armstrong

Back in the Day they blocked us, we didn't care what they said. Today it's the other way round. QED.

Anna

You mean, Russian media has a chance to compete with the NYT (Iraq war), Washington Post (Russiagate), the Wall Street Journal (Ukraine's "freedom" and MH17) and the whole 6-owners MSM? You are funny. The Soviet times look like a kindergarten compared to the incompetence, ineptitude, hypocrisy, and sycophancy in the highest echelons of the US power, the CIA and FBI and the Israel-occupied Congress. Where the Bolshevik sadists (many Jewish) had created GULAG (see Frenkel and Yagoda ) to exterminate the best and brightest among those representing the Russian nation, the US has created the Middle East mess in the name of Eretz Israel, MIC, and oilmen. You still do not get the gravity of the current situation when the US is refusing, consistently, to do diplomacy with Russia, despite the many attempts of the Russian federation to establish the normalcy of trade and cultural relationships. The US has been attempting to corner the resurrecting (nuclear-armed) Russia that was almost killed by the Harvard-advised shock economy in the 90-s.
By the way, western part of the USSR, including Baltic states and some regions of Ukraine and Belorussia, still have grudges against "Russians". See the Nazi and neo-Nazi parades in Ukraine and Baltic states. The Canadian progeny of Nazi collaborators approve the parades, whereas the Kagans-infested "think tanks" in the US have voiced no objections to the resurgence of neo-Nazism in eastern Europe. So much for the incessant squealing about "anti-semitism>'

Anna

Agree with Patrick

Anna

Are you able to provide an equivalent of "Russiagate" run by the Russian government and Russian press against a sovereign state? Just try hard.
Meanwhile, here is the honorable Paul Craig Roberts addressing the point: https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2017/11/02/washington-corruption-unparalleled-history/
http://theduran.com/obama-hillary-clinton-weaponized-dossier/

Patrick Armstrong

I recommend this as a description of Russian propaganda for the domestic audience.

https://thesaker.is/re-visiting-russian-counter-propaganda-methods/

kooshy

I have been fallowing Russian media RT and Sputnik, Ria also Iranian media like the Press TV, I agree they naturally do have bias, but they way they show their bias is that almost only look for and report negative events, issues and news etc. of the west not that they lie. But the western MSM outright lie or twist, IMO that is the reason they are losing this information battle, and that could be the reason to limit access to foreign alternative media. So IMO it is difficult to say they don't have a bias, or if they are balanced, but it's even more difficult to show they are lying. The western Media not only have the bias but they are not fearful of lying since they believe they control the circulation of information and global frontlines.

J

Patrick,

The Russian government is none too happy regarding the Air Force harvesting Russian biological.

The whole harvesting thing smacks of Biowarfare. Which contravenes the Geneva Conventions.

J

Patrick,

Here's Vesti broadcast regarding the Air Force harvesting of Russian biological

https://youtu.be/KYGqaCv9gn0


FourthAndLong

You ain't kidding. Delusions by American supporters of Russia these days are as profound as were those of nitwits like G.B. Shaw and H.G Wells who thought Uncle Joe was the fearless helmsman of a socialist utopia. Are they as severe as those promoting the 'Russia hacked the election' hysteria? Close call, but I'd say more so.

The Twisted Genius

Patrick,

Thanks for the illuminating and moving info about the Wall of Sorrow memorial in Moscow. Between this memorial and the annual march of the immortals, I find the Russian approach to their history to be quite heartening. I think we can learn something from them as we struggle to address our Civil War history and memorials.

A few weeks ago, I was surprised by the Russian reaction to a NATO propaganda video recounting the struggle of Baltic resistance movements against Soviet occupation. the video drew a direct line from these "forest brothers" to the current Baltic military forces. As a Lithuanian-American with several family members who fought with the forest brothers, I enjoyed the video. Russian media obviously did not find the video as enjoyable as I did. Their reaction painted the Baltic resistance as Nazi dead enders. Perhaps the current situation in Ukraine colored their reaction, but I was still surprised by the vitriol in the Russian response. Do you know if Russia has made any effort to address the substantial history of Soviet brutalization of the Baltics in any meaningful way?

The NATO Forest Brothers video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h5rQFp7FF9c

Some Russian reactions to the NATO video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYvfy6Wd9mk
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wrM0lTi2I4M
https://www.rt.com/politics/396208-historical-perversion-russian-officials-blast/

Peter AU

The biggest difference between Russia and US is official statements, answers to journalists - Putin, Lavrov, executive circle ect plus the Russian military leaders - transcriptions can be found to check on anything they say officially. Same in the US.
The diference between US spokespeople and Russian spokespeople is enormous. In the US, especialy at press conferences it is a constant stream of generalities, cliches and lies, whereas in Russia, detailed answers are usually given to journalists questions.
RT and Sputnik bias? Hardly. They seem mild to the point of being bland although Russia is under a determined though amateurish attack by the hedgemon. If they weren't slightly bias Russia's way then Russia Russia may as well pay the money out to western MSM for anti Russian propaganda rather than running their own world services.
Domestic propaganda - all I have to go on is the Saker analysis (I do not know Russian) which Patrick has linked to and thought most likely to be accurate at the time I read it.
But again, the starkest contrast is between transcripts of US official utterances and that of Russia. Over a period of time, Russian official statements have proved accurate and detailed, whereas US are generalities, cliches and lies.

different clue

Patrick Armstrong,

In my purely amateur opinion, it seems to me that if Russia can be seen to consistently meet and perform certain difficult-operations benchmarks in the civilian economy; that that would be a sign of real economic development and advancement to reach that benchmark-meeting level.

IF! . . . such a thing as "difficulty-threshold benchmarks" actually exist as an analytically useful set of things to watch for. IF such benchmarks can be thought of as actually existing, I think one such benchmark would be the ability to repeatedly and routinely get Kamchatka salmon from the Pacific ports to the markets of Western Russia . . . Moscow, Saint Petersburg, and then the smaller cities and even towns. Doing that would indicate the ability to handle delicate fish over 10 time zones of distance, make the salmon trains run on time each time every time, etc.

If that seems like a silly thing to suggest as a performance benchmark to watch for, then I suppose we can all have a good laugh at my well-intended suggestion. But if it seems like a useful indicator of having reached a certain level of success at handling difficult multi-step commercial operations and logistics, then the appearance of fresh ( or maybe even just flash frozen) Kamchatka salmon in those markets is something to watch for.

Peter AU

Above all, I value honesty.
Toner youtube -https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g2G0nhM9dCU

Balint Somkuti, PhD

I grew up in communist Hungary. Although Radio Free Europe was forbidden to listen to we still had an alternative source of information. Now the roles have reversed.

Peter AU

State department spokesperson Psaki is right here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OWfBW1ExZmc . Those nasty Rooshens had no right to eavesdrop on Nuland and Pyatt's private hegemon conversation about Yats is the man and f..k the EU, and publish this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WV9J6sxCs5k

I do like Zakhrova's press conferences though. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GSv1lRIrLrc

Patrick Armstrong

Sure OK. How about becoming self-sufficient in chickens, pigs and (if the story about offering to export beef to Saudi Arabia is true) cows? Is that a benchmark enough for you? (PS why bring salmon from Far East to Moscow when it's easier to bring it from the north?)

Patrick Armstrong

Russians are pretty neuralgic about nazis. Perhaps they see them where they aren't. But we don't see them anywhere except in movies.
Who's got a better bead on things as Agent K might ask?
Well not us, that's for sure. Vide Ukraine.

As to the Baltics, most of the Russians I know who have an opinion would argue (with, I might add, some justification) that Moscow tried to wake UK and France to the German danger, got a very lethargic response, signed up with Hitler to buy time, grabbed territory to buy space. They are also aware (as most in the West aren't) that the first county to sign a non-aggression pact with Hitler was.... drumroll.... Poland.

Ishmael Zechariah

FourthAndLong
Did you read the Donna Brazile disclosures? In the immortal words of TTG's SSG, "The shit is on, good buddy!".
Ishmael Zechariah

kooshy

Don’t be scared “The Cat has become a pious Muslim”

“Senior US official visited Damascus for talks: Lebanese daily”
https://goo.gl/yvdu8f

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