Streetwise Professor

April 20, 2014

May the Farce Be With You, Geneva Edition

Filed under: Military,Politics,Russia — The Professor @ 4:46 pm

Marx said that history repeats itself, first as tragedy, then as farce.

Perhaps the best interpretation of Geneva, 2014, is that it is the farcical doppelgänger of Munich, 1938.

It was apparent to anyone not willfully blind that Geneva was doomed to failure. There was no enforcement mechanism. And within hours, it became clear that the Russians intended to use the agreement as a reason to ratchet up its offensive against the Kiev government, and had no intention to force evacuation of any buildings by its forces in eastern Ukraine. The Russians are demanding that the Kiev government go after any group that Moscow does not like.

And you know what will happen. The Russians will use the failure of Kiev  to bend to their will as a pretext for refusing to do anything in Donestk, and for invading or supporting separatists.

I have to conclude that Kerry enjoys getting punked by Lavrov in Geneva. If he doesn’t, why does he do it so regularly?

Insofar as enforcement is concerned, the Geneva agreement lays out a special role for the OSCE. But check out this organizations description of its activities in Ukraine. Totally passive. Merely an observer. I’ve heard of alpha males. I’ve heard of beta males. OSCE comes off as omega males. Who have been eunuched.

And not surprisingly, the Russian forces in eastern Ukraine are totally blowing them off.

But don’t worry, OSCE is going to persuade them with sweet reason!:

After a meeting in Kiev on Saturday with diplomats from the four parties to the Geneva accord, Swiss envoy Christian Schoenenberger, whose country is chair of the OSCE, said its monitors had already spoken to the separatists: “For the time being the political will is not there to move out,” he said.

“That’s the task of the monitors, to create this political will, inform the people, so eventually they will understand that the best option for them is to move out,” he told reporters.

I don’t know whether to laugh, cry, or pound my head against the wall.

The article I linked to is titled “Surrender talks set with separatists in Ukraine.” It is beyond obvious that it is OSCE whose surrender is being negotiated.

But the farce does not end with Geneva. Perhaps stung by the criticism of his dancing to organ grinder Vladimir’s tune, Eddie Snowden penned a defense of his conduct that ran in the Guardian. Never fear, people, the article had its allotted content of narcissistic Snowden gasbaggery. (Just how many times do you have to mention risking your life, Ed.) But the best (and by best, I mean worst) part was this:

Moreover, I hoped that Putin’s answer – whatever it was – would provide opportunities for serious journalists and civil society to push the discussion further.

When this event comes around next year, I hope we’ll see more questions on surveillance programs and other controversial policies. But we don’t have to wait until then. For example, journalists might ask for clarification as to how millions of individuals’ communications are not being intercepted, analysed or stored, when, at least on a technical level, the systems that are in place must do precisely that in order to function.

I have to say it. What planet does this guy live on?

Journalists? You mean the ones that are beaten or killed if they challenge Putin? (The name Politkovskaya ring a bell, Ed?) Civil society? You mean the individuals and organizations that Putin and the Russian state have relentlessly ground into the dust over the past several years?

And just what answer would Snowden expect Putin to deliver to any journalist-with-a-death-wish who poses these questions?

Snowden’s Guardian piece comes off as more of a taunt than serious defense. He was only allowed to ask his question because the FSB approved it, and set up the entire apparatus for him to ask it. The Guardian article means nothing, because the Russians have to at least attempt to maintain the pretense that Snowden is not the organ grinder’s monkey that he actually is.

To show how farcical this is, check out Kucherena’s explanation of the situation:

Mr. Snowden’s Russian lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, denied his client had been pressured to participate.

“He decided to do this himself. There was no negotiation with the Kremlin,” he said. “Edward had the opportunity, so he asked the question.” Questions could be submitted ahead of the event in writing or in video form via a website or mobile application.

Um, just how did this “opportunity” magically appear?

Kucherena’s risible attempt to claim that this was not an FSB-arranged performance is the most telling proof that it was an FSB-arranged circus.

One more item in the farcical chronicles.  German FM Frank-Walter Steinmeier is pimping for Putin harder than ever:

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said he wished as much emphasis would be placed on preventing an escalation of tensions with Russia over Ukraine as there is at the moment in threatening economic sanctions.

In an interview to appear in Germany’s Bild am Sonntag newspaper on Sunday, Steinmeier appeared to be referring to threats from the United States as well as from within Germany about the need for economic sanctions against Russia.

“I sometimes wish that the same engagement being used for the debate about sanctions would also exist when it comes to avoiding a further escalation,” Steinmeier told the Sunday newspaper, according to excerpts released before publication.

Yeah, because Putin is putting so much effort into avoiding escalation.

Steinmeier is a snake at the bosom of the western alliance. Germany is totally compromised, and the US must accept that when crafting its own actions, such as they are. Germany is giving more proof by the day that whatever resources NSA devoted to spying on it, it was not enough.

One piece of news is that the US is considering going after Putin’s billions. I’ll believe it when I see it. For now, that appears to be just another part of the FUD campaign that the US is waging in place of actually doing something. But FUD doesn’t work unless the threats are credible, and the threats aren’t credible unless you carry through on them. Obama has repeatedly failed to do so, and as a result, these whispered and leaked threats will have zero effect whatsoever.

I fear the farce will be with us, for many years to come. The current farce stems from a fatal lack of will in the west, and that is not going away anytime soon.

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90 Comments »

  1. @AP
    BTW-very good posts.

    Comment by pahoben — April 23, 2014 @ 2:02 am

  2. When he hit 60 he stressed and started thinking-So much territory to conquer and so few years left.

    Comment by pahoben — April 23, 2014 @ 2:06 am

  3. Megalomaniacs have mid-life crises too but they come a bit later.

    If post-Saddam US policy in Iraq would have been rationale Exxon would not have to grovel in the Kremlin now.

    Comment by pahoben — April 23, 2014 @ 2:25 am

  4. Thanks, Pahoben.

    Comment by AP — April 23, 2014 @ 7:08 am

  5. Cut the middleman! Biden for President of Ukraine!

    http://ic.pics.livejournal.com/i_m_ho/25019411/1176896/1176896_600.jpg

    Comment by vladislav — April 23, 2014 @ 1:24 pm

  6. Mass anti-Russian demonstrations in West Ukraine:

    https://scontent-a-sjc.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-frc3/t1.0-9/10255675_10152366946008007_7606165821290136045_n.jpg

    Glory to Ukraine! Glory to the heroes! Glory to the Western values! Zieg heil!

    Comment by vladislav — April 23, 2014 @ 2:13 pm

  7. > If post-Saddam US policy in Iraq would have been rationale Exxon would not have to grovel in the Kremlin now.

    Absolutely correct. The purpose of the Iraq aggression was to use US taxpayers’ money and blood in order to give the Iraqi oil to the US and UK oil companies. The first goal was accomplished: the Ameican taxpayers have lost $2 trillion and thousands of lives.

    However, the profits to the oil companies from Iraqi oil has been quite small: maybe $50 billion?

    In other words, if our government didn’t invade and occupy Iraq, but instead gave, say, $200 billion of taxpayer money to oil companies, everybody would have been the winner:

    1. The oil companies and the Washington, DC lobbyists and the US congressmen in their employ would have been $150 billion wealthier

    2. The budget deficit would have been $1.8 trillion lower

    3. Thousands of American lives and hundreds of thousands of Iraqi lives would have been spared

    4. Iraq would have been off limit to Al Qaeda

    5. The american reputation around the world would not have been further damaged

    Comment by vladislav — April 23, 2014 @ 2:52 pm

  8. News Brief
    Ukrainian separatist TV channel to combat ‘zombie Zionists’
    April 22, 2014 6:11am
    (JTA) — Ukrainian separatists pledged to combat “zombie Zionists” in what appeared to be a promotional video for a newly-launched pro-Russian television channel.
    The video was one of the first materials shown by KPE TV, which was established on Sunday, the news website tvplus.dn.ua reported Monday.
    Coming amid a string of anti-Semitic attacks and incidents in Ukraine, the video showed three men standing in what appears to be a broadcast room while boasting about the new television channel.
    Twenty seconds into the video, one of the three unnamed men is seen describing the channel as “a powerful blow to the biblical matrix and zombie Zionist.”
    The television channel is based in Slovyansk, a city located 60 miles north of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine, where three unidentified men last week handed out anti-Semitic fliers calling on Jews to register with authorities and pay a special fee for what the fliers’ authors called Ukrainian Jews’ pro-Ukrainian sentiments.
    Separatist leaders have denied any involvement in the distribution of the fliers, calling them a provocation.
    Several areas in eastern Ukraine, where many millions of ethnic Russian live, have seen separatist rioting against the Ukrainian government, which came to power last month after the ousting of former president Viktor Yanokuvych in a revolution that erupted over his perceived pro-Russian policies.
    Since the revolution erupted in November, Ukraine, which has relatively low levels of anti-Semitic violence, has seen several serious attacks including a stabbing and the attempted torching of two synagogues, most recently last week in Nikolayev.
    The Ukrainian government and Russian government officials, as well as their supporters in Ukraine, have exchanged allegations of anti-Semitism.
    “For the last two months Russian propaganda has promoted the idea that the new reformist government in Kyiv – which includes a Jewish Deputy Prime Minister, and two Jewish governors in major population centers – is anti-Semitic. Now the truth is out: many of the far-right pro-Russia separatists are anti-Semites with strong links to Russian fascist and xenophobic groups. They are now threatening Jews, Ukrainians, Roma, and other non-Russians. This is the set of allies and agents President Putin has put into play,” Adrian Karatnycky, co-director of the Ukrainian Jewish Encounter and a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, told JTA Tuesday.

    Read more: http://www.jta.org/2014/04/22/news-opinion/world/ukrainian-separatist-tv-channel-to-combat-zombie-zionists#ixzz2zlyZRzYS

    Comment by Andrew — April 23, 2014 @ 9:59 pm

  9. > Separatist leaders have denied any involvement in the distribution of the fliers, calling them a provocation.

    So, Andrew, the previous time (last week) that you published “news” about anti-semitic fliers in Donetsk, it turned out to be the work of the criminal oligarch and Maidan financier Kolomoysky, the new junta’s governor of Dnepropetrovsk. Any evidence that it was not Kolomoysky but another Maidan financier? I mean, it would be boring to spread falsifications from the same source more than once per week. Mix them up. Next time post anti-semitic falsifications from different Maidan criminals.

    Comment by vladislav — April 23, 2014 @ 11:35 pm

  10. Russian forces occupy New York!

    Remeber how the US media declared that the Donetsk militants are Putin’s soldiers because they spoke Rusisan and not Ukrainian?

    Look at this news and video:

    http://www.opposingviews.com/i/society/bus-passengers-beat-man-harassing-elderly-couple-video
    Bus Passengers Beat Up Man Harassing Elderly Couple (Video)

    Look at this man:

    http://www.secretsofthefed.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/BUSS-PASSENGERS-BEAT-UP-599×275.jpg

    He is dressed like those men in Donetsk and he speaks no Ukrainian! He even has a red star on his Red Army hat!

    https://img0.etsystatic.com/039/0/8491256/il_570xN.581088748_dmh6.jpg

    Proof positive that Putin’s forces have landed in New York and are harassing the elderly!

    Comment by vladislav — April 24, 2014 @ 2:11 am

  11. he purpose of the Iraq aggression was to use US taxpayers’ money and blood in order to give the Iraqi oil to the US and UK oil companies.

    Okay, let’s run with this for a while.

    The first goal was accomplished:

    Right, with you so far.

    However, the profits to the oil companies from Iraqi oil has been quite small: maybe $50 billion?

    Okay, at this point any intelligent person would be asking themselves whether their initial premise, i.e. giving money to US and UK oil companies was valid.

    Then when you consider that there is only one major American oil company, and one major British oil company, operating in Iraq, both of whom had to bid in a competitive round for the privilege and secured deals which were not considered favourable; and then you further consider that Russian and Chinese oil companies have also won licenses in Iraq, the whole premise is revealed as being absolute bollocks.

    Comment by Tim Newman — April 24, 2014 @ 5:35 am

  12. What evidence Vladislav? From Russian TV? Not seen anything about it in trustworthy sources

    You do realise Ihor Kolomoyskyi is Jewish right?

    Comment by Andrew — April 24, 2014 @ 9:00 am

  13. > What evidence Vladislav? From Russian TV? Not seen anything about it in trustworthy sources

    Thank you for asking.

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/apr/18/antisemitic-donetsk-peoples-republic-ukraine-hoax

    Antisemitic flyer ‘by Donetsk People’s Republic’ in Ukraine a hoax

    City’s chief rabbi states pamphlet is fake, claiming it is meant to discredit pro-Russian protesters or Jewish community

    When seen by the Guardian on Friday, several aspects of the document immediately called into question its legitimacy. Pushilin is officially the chairman of the temporary government and has avoided being labelled its governor or leader. Also, the Donetsk People’s Republic stamp shown there is poor quality and a different size than normally used, and the order is not signed.

    Here is what our mutual (with LR and SWP) friend Julia Ioffe ( a wman who cannot be accused of not haitng Putin) confirming writes about this provocation:

    http://www.newrepublic.com/article/117415/relax-ukraine-not-ordering-its-jews-register

    Ukraine Is NOT Ordering Its Jews to Register

    Today, the Western press caught up with the Ukrainian rumor mill: apparently, the People’s Republic of Donetsk had ordered all Jews over the age of 16 to pay a fee of $50 U.S. and register with the new “authorities,” or face loss of citizenship or expulsion. This was laid out in officious-looking fliers pasted on the local synagogue. One local snapped a photo of the fliers and sent it to a friend in Israel, who then took it to the Israeli press and, voila, an international scandal: American Twitter is abuzz with it, Drudge is hawking it, and, today in Geneva, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry slammed the fliers as “grotesque.”

    The Donetsk Jewish community dismissed this as “a provocation,” which it clearly is. “It’s an obvious provocation designed to get this exact response, going all the way up to Kerry,” says Fyodr Lukyanov, editor of Russia in Global Affairs. “I have no doubt that there is a sizeable community of anti-Semites on both sides of the barricades, but for one of them to do something this stupid—this is done to compromise the pro-Russian groups in the east.”

    Why? The Russian government has been playing up the (real but small) role of fascists and neo-Nazis in the victory of the EuroMaidan in Kiev. The Ukrainian government, utterly powerless to fight off the Russians and their local stooges, have had to rely on other methods, like leaking taped phone calls of allegedly local separatists getting their commands from Moscow. This may be just another tactic to smear the so-called anti-Maidan in the east of Ukraine: you think we’re fascists? Well, take a look at these guys.

    Indeed, the Russian web chatter has sniffed the hand of the Dnipropetrovsk city government. (Dnipropetrovsk is another eastern Ukrainian city, but one that has been spared this chaos, in part because of the firm hand of its new regional governor, Jewish businessman Ihor Kolomoisky. One (Jewish) blogger said he received a similar looking flier from an official in the Dnipropetrovsk city administration:

    http://dandorfman.livejournal.com/498317.html

    Beware: provocation!

    Last night, the Dnepropetrovsk governor’s office (headed by the notorious pro-OUN/UPA Maidan gangster oligarch Kolomoysky) issued yet another forgery, written by the assistant governor of Dnepropetrovsk Boris Filatov, this time regarding Jews. On behalf of the alleged self-proclaimed leader of the People’s Republic of Donetsk, Filatov ordered all Jews of Donetsk and other cities in the region “to register” and pay $50 fee.

    This monstrous wild text is so absurd that no one with brains would believe it. Again, the author and INSPIRER of this bogus paper is Boris Filatov. To reminds readers what kind of a person Boris Filatov is, here is what he wrote about Crimean pro-Russian demonstrators: “No armed Maidan men should be sent there. No extremist statements. Right now we should pretend to give these scum promises, guarantees and concessions. And hang them? We’ll hang them later.”

    http://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D0%A4%D0%B8%D0%BB%D0%B0%D1%82%D0%BE%D0%B2,_%D0%91%D0%BE%D1%80%D0%B8%D1%81_%D0%90%D0%BB%D1%8C%D0%B1%D0%B5%D1%80%D1%82%D0%BE%D0%B2%D0%B8%D1%87#.D0.9F.D0.BE.D0.BB.D0.B8.D1.82.D0.B8.D1.87.D0.B5.D1.81.D0.BA.D0.B8.D0.B5_.D0.B2.D0.B7.D0.B3.D0.BB.D1.8F.D0.B4.D1.8B

    NBC News itself ran a segment admitting that there is no reason to suspect the pro-Russian people of writing this leaflet and the blame most likely lies with Yatsenyuk’s anti-Russian officials:

    http://www.nbcnews.com/video/nightly-news/54986387/#54986387

    Also overseas tonight, the crisis in Ukraine is showing no signs of letup. Neither side is backing off from their positions and the mystery over who is handing out leaflets telling jews they must register has only deepened. nbc’s jim maceda is there and has our report tonight.

    >> reporter: just a check that the threat was real, several jews came here yesterday to the headquarters of the pro-Russia militants as if registering themselves as requested. They were told to leave immediately, that no one here knows anything about such a leaflet.

    And today, pro russian authorities in Donetsk blamed the other side. This is just a provocation he said from the government in Kiev.

    Jews believe the leaflets were a hoax, but they’re still angry and worried. the days of scapegoating jews were supposed to be over.

    US State Department:
    >> “the source is less important than how horrific the content was and the message it sent.”

    (In other words: “It is not important that these antisemitic threats were written by our pro-American stooges. What is important is that we want to blame Putin for our own virulently antisemitic pamphlet.”)

    Comment by vladislav — April 24, 2014 @ 1:08 pm

  14. “This monstrous wild text is so absurd that no one with brains would believe it.”

    And you, Andrew, believed it. Congratulations: yet another person has diagnosed your handicap.

    Comment by vladislav — April 24, 2014 @ 1:12 pm

  15. http://nypost.com/2014/04/18/fliers-ordering-jews-to-register-in-ukraine-a-hoax/

    Fliers ordering Jews to ‘register’ in Ukraine a hoax

    Anti-Semitic fliers ordering Jews in Donetsk, Ukraine, to “register” with authorities were an elaborate hoax, the region’s chief rabbi said Friday.
    The Nazi-era-style leaflets — which instructed Jews to register as pro-Russia separatists and declare all property — were likely used as a tool get the international community involved in the battle between Russia and Ukraine, the rabbi told The Guardian.

    I think someone is trying to use the Jewish community in Donetsk as an instrument in this conflict,” said Rabbi Pinchas Vishedski. “That’s why we’re upset.”

    On Thursday, Secretary of State John Kerry denounced the fliers as “grotesque” and the story of their distribution quickly spread, deeply disturbing Jews in the region and all over the world.

    In response, Denis Pushilin — the pro-Russia separatist linked to the fliers — called them a “complete lie” and a deliberate “provocation,” Fox News reported Friday.
    “This provocation has been done unprofessionally — first of all, [the flier] is signed as ‘people’s governor Denis Pushilin,’ and I never referred to myself as such and nobody called me like that first,” said Pushilin, chairman of Donetsk’s “temporary” government. “Secondly, the stamp that is there, it is bigger in size, meaning simply it has been done in a Photoshop. And third, if you read the text, you will see that it’s relatively badly written.”

    Pushilin claimed that pro-Ukrainian groups were circulating the leaflets to outrage Jewish people and get other countries involved in the conflict in Donetsk, where militants have taken over government buildings in a bid to bring control of the city under Russian rule.

    Comment by vladislav — April 24, 2014 @ 2:15 pm

  16. Yet another example of the US-sponsored campaign of falsification:

    http://rt.com/news/154548-pictures-russian-troops-false/

    Pictures presented by Washington and Kiev as evidence of Russia’s involvement in Ukraine, and published on Monday by the New York Times, were unverified and in fact contradicted the claims they were to support.

    The US State department acknowledged the error and the New York Times back-tracked on its Monday story, which claimed “photographs and descriptions from eastern Ukraine endorsed by the Obama administration … suggest that many of the green men are indeed Russian military and intelligence forces”.

    The proof was this particular picture with an inscription “Group photograph taken in Russia”.

    Freelance photographer Maxim Dondyuk took the photo.

    “It was taken in Slavyansk [Ukraine],” he told NYT over the phone. “Nobody asked my permission to use it.”

    The picture was amongst others Kiev gave the OSCE mission to Ukraine to ‘prove’ Russian involvement in the massive unrest gripping the Donetsk region.

    The State Department repeated the claims, citing ‘confirmation’ of Moscow involvement.

    “We see in the photos that have been again in international media, on Twitter, publicly available is that there are individuals who visibly appear to be tied to Russia. We’ve said that publicly a countless number of times,” Jen Psaki, State Dept spokeswoman said.

    The New York Times eventually published a climbdown Wednesday – ‘Scrutiny Over Photos Said to Tie Russia Units to Ukraine’, where it admitted failing to properly verify the Kiev photo dossier.

    The NYT also cited the State Dept’s Psaki admitting “the assertion that the photograph in the American briefing materials had been taken in Russia was incorrect”. She explained the picture was only part of a draft packet that wasn’t used by Kerry at the talks.

    Psaki then claimed to have other evidence connecting “the Russians and the armed militants” in eastern Ukraine but would not provide details.

    Comment by vladislav — April 24, 2014 @ 2:38 pm

  17. – Concentrate on one enemy at a time and blame him for everything that goes wrong
    – People will believe a big lie sooner than a little one
    – If you repeat it frequently enough, people will sooner or later believe it
    /Hitler’s philosophy on propaganda/

    Comment by vladislav — April 24, 2014 @ 2:42 pm

  18. Vladislav, in all that bile where is the actual evidence that Kolomoyskyi is responsible? Wikipedia.ru does not count.

    As to your last post regards photos, RT does not count either.

    Comment by Andrew — April 24, 2014 @ 10:48 pm

  19. Andrew, given your own anti-semitism, you should really lay off of your fake concern for Jews.

    As far as Kolomoysky goes, re-read the above posts about his assistant, Filatov, writing and faxing these leaflets to Jews.

    Kolomoysky, of course, is the most evil persona in modern Ukraine. For many years he has been accused of being the sugar daddy of the Social-National party Svoboda, although the latter denies it, for obvious reasons. A couple of days ago, the notorious fascist bandits from the Right Sector have announced moving their operations to Kolomoysky’s Dnepropetrovsk, evidently the only place outside of West Ukraine where they won’t be hunted down by the junta and by the pro-Russian forces, thanks to Kolomoysky’s protection. Expect Dnepropetrovsk to become the main catalyst of the impending civil war.

    Comment by vladislav — April 24, 2014 @ 11:29 pm

  20. What ant-semitism Vladislav? That I pointed out Yagoda and Yezov were Jewish when you blamed Georgians for all the USSRs ills?
    Or when I pointed out that it was odd that you supported the USSR/Russia so hard when they were and are working quite hard for the destruction of Israel?
    As a life long supporter of Israel I find it funny indeed.

    Anyway, since you love polls so much:

    NEW IRI UKRAINE POLL: OPPOSITION TO RUSSIAN MILITARY INTERVENTION STRONG THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY, ENTHUSIASM FOR ELECTION IS HIGH
    April 24, 2014

    Kyiv, Ukraine – A new Ukraine poll (PDF), released today by IRI, found that, although there are divisions in the country, opposition to Russian military intervention remains high, voters in all regions are looking forward to the upcoming presidential election and, despite the continuing crisis, public confidence in the government remains steady.

    Due to Russia’s occupation of the peninsula, residents of Crimea were unable to be included in this poll.

    Opposition to Russia Military Intervention Strong in All Regions
    Despite Russian propaganda and the claims of pro-Russia militants that Russian-speaking citizens need protection from Moscow, an overwhelming majority of respondents (85 percent) oppose Moscow sending troops to protect Russian-speaking citizens.

    This overwhelming majority opposed to Russian intervention extends to every region (97 percent, west; 94 percent, center; 69 percent, east; 75 percent, south), to all age groups (18-29 year olds, 85 percent; 30-49 year olds, 85 percent; 50 and older, 85 percent) and to men and women (men, 84 percent; women, 86 percent). In addition, 68 percent of Russian-speaking citizens oppose military intervention by Moscow.

    As in IRI’s March poll, more than half of respondents (55 percent) consider military intervention by Moscow to be an invasion and occupation of independent Ukraine.

    When asked if it was necessary for the Russian military to come into eastern and/or southern Ukraine to protect Russian speakers and ethnic Russians, an overwhelming majority (88 percent) said no. That majority was seen across all regions of the country, 98 percent in the west, 95 percent in the center, 73 percent in the east and 86 percent in the south.

    Furthermore, 73 percent of respondents believe Ukraine should remain a unitary country governed by a central government.

    Voter Enthusiasm for Election is High
    Despite the fact that 64 percent of respondents believe Russia will try to disrupt or discredit the May 25 presidential election, an overwhelming 84 percent said they either will or are likely to vote. Although enthusiasm for the presidential election is highest in the west (91 percent) and center (92 percent), a majority in all regions say they either will or are likely to vote, 79 percent in the east and 62 percent in the south.

    Although support for Petro Poroshenko has increased from IRI’s March poll, with 29 percent of respondents indicating they would vote him, a second round run-off election seems likely. Of the other candidates, Yulia Tymoshenko is in second place with 13 percent, Serhiy Tihipko is next with six percent, followed by Mykhailo Dobkin with five percent. Oleh Lyashko and Petro Symonenko each received four percent.

    Asking respondents who they would vote for in a second round run-off Poroshenko or Tymoshenko, 41 percent responded Poroshenko and 15 percent said Tymoshenko, 21 percent would vote against both, 12 percent would not vote and 11 percent said they didn’t know.

    The presidential election will be critical to stabilizing Ukraine and is clearly something that Moscow does not want.

    Confidence in the Government Holds
    Despite continuing concerns about the crisis in eastern Ukraine, confidence in the government has remained steady. Forty-six percent of Ukrainians (up from 42 percent) approve of the job Oleksiy Turchynov is doing as acting president of Ukraine. Fifty-two percent (up from 47 percent) approve of the job Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk is doing.

    The current parliament, elected in 2012, which Moscow propaganda would have people believe is an illegal government, maintains a plurality of support.

    Respondents continue to support the government’s agenda of strengthening ties to Europe with 53 percent preferring to join the European Union and 54 percent indicated they would vote to join the EU if a referendum were held today.

    Methodology
    The poll was conducted in all regions of Ukraine (excluding Crimea) from April 3-12, 2014, with a randomly selected sample of 1,200 permanent residents of Ukraine older than the age of 18 and eligible to vote. The margin of error does not exceed plus or minus 2.8 percent, and the response rate was 65 percent.

    The survey was conducted by Baltic Surveys/The Gallup Organization, with field work carried out by Rating Group Ukraine. The survey was funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development.

    http://www.iri.org/NEWS-EVENTS-PRESS-CENTER/NEWS/NEW-IRI-UKRAINE-POLL-OPPOSITION-RUSSIAN-MILITARY-INTERVENTION-STRONG-T

    Comment by Andrew — April 25, 2014 @ 6:12 am

  21. And also, if Svoboda is anti-Semitic as you claim, why would they be funded by a Jewish oligarch? Or do you follow the Russian line of a secret cabal of Jewish Nazis trying to destroy the Russian people?

    Comment by Andrew — April 25, 2014 @ 6:14 am

  22. > And also, if Svoboda is anti-Semitic as you claim, why would they be funded by a Jewish oligarch?

    Why not? Svoboda is in Kolomoysky’s financial and political interests, and his money is in Svoboda’s interests. Some Jews do even worse. Take, for example, the chess genius Bobby Fischer, a Jew:

    Anti-semitic statements

    Fischer, whose mother was Jewish,[30][34][35][259] and whose probable biological father was Jewish,[30] made numerous anti-Jewish statements and professed a general hatred for Jews since at least the early 1960s.[259][478] Jan Hein Donner wrote that at the time of Bled 1961, “He idolized Hitler and read everything about him that he could lay his hands on. He also championed a brand of anti-semitism that could only be thought up by a mind completely cut off from reality”.[225] Donner took Fischer to a war museum, which “left a great impression, since [Fischer] is not an evil person, and afterwards he was more restrained in his remarks—to me, at least”.[225]

    Although Fischer described his mother as Jewish in an article he wrote as a teenager,[259] he later denied his Jewish ancestry.[30] In 1984, Fischer denied being a Jew in a letter to the Encyclopaedia Judaica, insisting that they remove his name and accusing them of “fraudulently misrepresenting me to be a Jew […] to promote your religion”.[479]

    From the 1980s on, Fischer’s comments about Jews were a major theme in his public and private remarks.[480] He openly denied the Holocaust, and called the United States “a farce controlled by dirty, hook-nosed, circumcised Jew bastards”.[481] Between 1999 and 2006, Fischer’s primary means of communicating with the public was radio interviews. He participated in at least 34 such broadcasts, mostly with radio stations in the Philippines, but also in Hungary, Iceland, Colombia, and Russia. In 1999, he gave a radio call-in interview to a station in Budapest, Hungary, during which he described himself as the “victim of an international Jewish conspiracy”. In another radio interview, Fischer said that it became clear to him in 1977, after reading The Secret World Government by Count Cherep-Spiridovich, that Jewish agencies were targeting him.[482] Fischer’s sudden reemergence was apparently triggered when some of his belongings, which had been stored in a Pasadena, California storage unit, were sold by the landlord who claimed it was in response to nonpayment of rent.[483]

    Fischer’s library contained anti-semitic and white supremacist literature such as Mein Kampf, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, and The White Man’s Bible and Nature’s Eternal Religion by Ben Klassen, founder of the Church of the Creator.[484][485] A notebook written by Fischer contains sentiments such as “8/24/99 Death to the Jews. Just kill the Motherfuckers!” and “12/13/99 It’s time to start randomly killing Jews”.[486][487]

    Comment by vladislav — April 25, 2014 @ 2:02 pm

  23. > Or do you follow the Russian line of a secret cabal of Jewish Nazis trying to destroy the Russian people?

    From whom exactly in the Russian government or mass media have you heard that “a secret cabal of Jewish Nazis is trying to destroy the Russian people”?

    > And also, if Svoboda is anti-Semitic as you claim…

    Are you saying that you are not aware that Svoboda is anti-Semitic? I posted hundreds pieces of evidence. Every mention of Svoboda in the Western media is accompanied by the adjective “anti-semitic” and often “neo-nazi”. Here is one example, explaining the position of the world Jewish organizations:

    http://www.jpost.com/Jewish-World/Jewish-News/World-Jewish-Congress-urges-ban-on-neo-Nazi-parties-312395

    REUTERS, BUDAPEST, May 4, 2013

    The World Jewish Congress calls for European ban on ‘neo-Nazi parties’

    Delegates representing Jewish communities in more than 100 countries approved the resolution calling for the ban on parties like … Ukrainian “Svoboda” due to the rise of far-right nationalist movements in Greece, Hungary and the Ukraine.

    Comment by vladislav — April 25, 2014 @ 2:18 pm

  24. In these days of strife, let us not forget what unites Russians and Ukrainians:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jYyKHX5e-hc
    Graduates of the National “Yaroslav the Wise” Academy of Jurisprudence, Kharkov marching to the immortal “Frarewell of the Slavic Woman”

    Comment by vladislav — April 25, 2014 @ 11:35 pm

  25. The problem with comparing Kolomoyskiy to Bobby Fisher is that Kolomyskiy hold Israeli citizenship, is president of the United Jewish Community of Ukraine.

    He is an unpleasant character from the perspective of his business dealings (to put it mildly), but to describe him as a self-hating Jew is absurd.

    Russian nationalists have traditionally tried to drive a wedge between Ukrainians and Jews, to the detriment of both peoples. This game is largely over, within Ukraine, although it goes on in the minds of Russians.

    Comment by AP — April 26, 2014 @ 8:10 am

  26. @AP – Kremlinoids have traditionally tried to drive a wedge between everyone. The modus operandi is that everyone is supposed to love it when the Kremlinoids beat everyone over the head to spread “Russkiy mir”. The Kremlinoids love misery – it makes them happy.

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/04/25/want-a-good-look-at-putin-s-pervy-propaganda-see-the-furies-of-maidan.html

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5hCx-mnI9NA

    04.25.14
    Want a Good Look at Putin’s Pervy Propaganda? See ‘The Furies of Maidan’

    A Russian MP’s wild rant at a pregnant reporter was inspired by an ‘investigative report’ that blames Ukraine’s revolution on sexually frustrated women and claims, ‘They like it hard.’

    Even amid the increasing surreality of Vladimir Putin’s Russia, ultranationalist MP Vladimir Zhirinovsky’s tirade against a pregnant reporter who asked a question about Ukraine stood out.

    Besides telling the woman she shouldn’t work while pregnant, instructing a male aide to rape her, and shouting, “Damned lesbian!” at another female reporter who tried to rebuke him, Zhirinovsky lashed out at the women of Ukraine’s pro-independence Maidan movement, assailing them as sex-starved harpies. “There’s going to be a film about you, The Furies of Maidan,” he railed, apparently taking the female journalists for Maidan sympathizers. “You’ve all got uterine frenzy, the women of Maidan,” he ranted. “If it weren’t for this uterine frenzy, there wouldn’t be any Maidan.”

    Zhirinovsky, who has apologized for his outburst at last week’s press conference and faces likely censure by the Duma, Russia’s parliament, is known for his outrageous antics. But it turns out The Furies of Maidan is not a figment of his imagination. It is a real “investigative report” that aired last Saturday on NTV, one of Russia’s major television networks. Subtitled “Sex, Psychosis, and Politics,” the 30-minute feature makes exactly the same point as Zhirinovsky’s rant: that the displaced energy of sexually frustrated or pathological women was a driving force behind Ukraine’s Euromaidan revolution. In the dramatic words of the 45-second promo: “They like it hard. They are turned on by danger. And woe to anyone who fails to appreciate them.”

    While the report could be mistaken for a clever if over-the-top parody clip, it is not. A wild mélange of paranoia, smear, sleaze, misogyny, and homophobia that makes Rush Limbaugh look politically correct, The Furies of Maidan offers a disturbing glimpse into the state of Russia’s government-run mainstream media—and into the toxic sludge of propaganda it regularly dumps on a largely uncritical public.

    Comment by elmer — April 26, 2014 @ 2:47 pm

  27. > He is an unpleasant character from the perspective of his business dealings (to put it mildly), but to describe him as a self-hating Jew is absurd.

    Nobody did so. “Self-hating” is the last description that would fit him. He is in love with himself and everything about him. His connections with Svoboda and Right Sector are pure business and self-interest.

    > Russian nationalists have traditionally tried to drive a wedge between Ukrainians and Jews

    Nonsense. There are too few Jews left in Ukraine to struggle for their support. The reason why the emergence to power of West Uke extremists is pointed out, is because now they want genocide of tens of millions of Moskals of all ethnicities, and they now have both the power and the heavily armed paramilitary units to kill, kill, kill.

    > This game is largely over, within Ukraine, although it goes on in the minds of Russians.

    Their game is just beginning. They will not go away quietly, they are no silent lambs. Here is a small sampling of their demonstrations demanding physical extermination of Moskals:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G3Mr_ZrrqEQ
    Москалей на ножи, Правый Сектор идет по городу.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x4WMU0rQqkc
    Марш бандеровцев УПА: москалей на ножи!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mS0soKFrhqA
    Киев. 27.03.2014.Правосеки перед штурмом Верховной Рады.”Москалей на ножи”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yCCH1BTLFro
    Приезд Фарион в Одессу Москалей – на ножи!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EOVnsd6e4_Y
    Хватит бухать пора воевать! Москалей на ножи!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cbH_kj21rVk
    25 03 14 Правый сектор Россия, жди! Москалей на ножи!

    ttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KX_ja9OezuE
    14.3.2013 №10 Москалей на ножи!

    They even indoctrinate Ukrainian school children – entire schools! – into genocide:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KrJC6rU9lG0
    Школьная линейка в украинской школе. Москаляку на гилляку.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XbAVIsF2UuA
    Школьная линейка Дрогобича. Школьники скандируют Москалей на ножи!

    Comment by vladislav — April 26, 2014 @ 3:41 pm

  28. “Москалей на ножи!” means “Stab Moskals!” and is the second most popular nationalist slogan after “Glory to Ukraine! Glory to the Heroes!”

    Comment by vladislav — April 26, 2014 @ 3:44 pm

  29. The third most popular nationalist slogan is “Кто не скаче, той москаль!” – “If you aren’t hopping/jumping, you are a Moskal!”. It’s how the Maidan crowds kept themselves warm and motivated in cold winter nights during their illegal occupation of the center of the capital in November, December, January, and February (thanks to the police inactivity):

    http://wikireality.ru/wiki/%D0%9A%D1%82%D0%BE_%D0%BD%D0%B5_%D1%81%D0%BA%D0%B0%D1%87%D0%B5%D1%82,_%D1%82%D0%BE%D1%82_%D0%BC%D0%BE%D1%81%D0%BA%D0%B0%D0%BB%D1%8C

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkHAr23LMww
    Евромайдан. Майданутые: “Кто не скачет – тот москаль”.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wf9QSL9UNZ4

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M6rfqr9afMc
    Хто не скаче, той москаль

    Comment by vladislav — April 26, 2014 @ 3:53 pm

  30. SWP, I’m not sure how you were selected to have your own personal Kremlinoid troll on your blog, but it’s obvious that you have one. vladislav the little Kremlinoid Krappola purveyor, is foaming at the mouth, working overtime, to flood your blog with stuff that only “resonances” in the Kremlin, and in certain parts of the Rasha.

    Anyway, I thought people might like to see pictures of the results of Vlad Dracul Putler’s handiwork in Crimea:

    https://twitter.com/euromaidan/status/460111843768287233/photo/1

    That’s a meat counter in Crimea – obviously, Vlad Dracul Putler has decided to turn everyone in Crimea into vegetarians.

    https://twitter.com/golub/status/460140164170670080/photo/1

    And a grocery store – empty shelves.

    Actually, I keep thinking of that 38 second clip, from his recent marathon TV monologue, when a villager asked him for help with the bad roads in the Rasha, and Putler responded:

    “why do you need a car, if there are bad roads? what is this, a provocation?”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=s7RY4exvrno

    Comment by elmer — April 26, 2014 @ 9:41 pm

  31. Andrew, to continue our discussion of military zieg-heils, what do you think about this seemingly authentic picture of an Ukrainian armoured vehicle going to “pacify” its fellow East Ukrainian citizens:

    https://scontent-a-sjc.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn2/t1.0-9/1898212_629404187139073_2681160552707945065_n.png

    Comment by vladislav — April 27, 2014 @ 1:35 am

  32. Do you remember the big scandal the US media made over a Russian RTR’s channels’s segment about the automatic Russian nuclear retaliation system that can annihilate the USA even if the USA’s fist nuclear strike kills everybody in Russia?

    Well, the US mass media simply had to retaliate. I just saw CBS 60 Minutes advertise its segment on “Inside the nuclear missile control centers of a US Air Force base” later today. I can’t wait to see the other US mass media express the same outrage over this program as over RTR’s program earlier. 🙂

    Comment by vladislav — April 27, 2014 @ 4:38 am

  33. What do the “little green men” who “aren’t in Ukraine,” according to Vlad Dracul Putler, do with Ukrainian tanks?

    Well, they pull donuts!

    http://thedailyshow.cc.com/videos/xwtb3c/the-empire-takes-back—tank-tricks

    vladislav, our personal little Kremlinoid Krappola troll, will not like that Daily Show report about Putler and Snowden and the rest.

    You know – because vladislav is “one of us Americans”

    Comment by elmer — April 27, 2014 @ 1:25 pm

  34. > vladislav, our personal little Kremlinoid Krappola troll

    Ask your mommy to change your diapers. You start to smell.

    Comment by vladislav — April 27, 2014 @ 3:04 pm

  35. The Chicago court has ruled that the Maidan demonstrators and other Molotoff cocktail throwers are terrorists and should be thrown in jail for 6 years:

    http://korrespondent.net/world/3354816-v-ssha-sud-pryhovoryl-troykh-protestovavshykh-protyv-sammyta-nato-k-19-hodam-tuirmy

    Comment by vladislav — April 27, 2014 @ 3:32 pm

  36. sanctions designation against additional persons, including Sechin, and companies:

    http://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/sanctions/OFAC-Enforcement/Pages/20140428.aspx

    Comment by elmer — April 28, 2014 @ 7:55 am

  37. http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/04/28/statement-press-secretary-ukraine

    For Immediate Release
    April 28, 2014
    Statement by the Press Secretary on Ukraine

    The United States has taken further action today in response to Russia’s continued illegal intervention in Ukraine and provocative acts that undermine Ukraine’s democracy and threaten its peace, security, stability, sovereignty, and territorial integrity. At the contact group meeting in Geneva on April 17, 2014, Russia, Ukraine, the United States, and the European Union decided on a number of steps to deescalate the situation in eastern Ukraine, including refraining from further violence or provocative acts. Since April 17, Russia has done nothing to meet its Geneva commitments and in fact has further escalated the crisis. Russia’s involvement in the recent violence in eastern Ukraine is indisputable.

    Comment by elmer — April 28, 2014 @ 8:01 am

  38. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/29/world/asia/obama-sanctions-russia.html?hp

    MANILA — The United States on Monday imposed additional sanctions against Russian government officials and companies deemed close to President Vladimir V. Putin, accusing Moscow of failing to live up to its agreement to defuse the crisis in Ukraine.

    The Obama administration ordered travel bans and asset freezes for seven Russian officials, including two said to be in Mr. Putin’s inner circle, and froze assets for 17 companies. Thirteen Russian companies will also face additional restrictions as the government will cut off the export or re-export of American-made products to them.

    Additionally, the State and Commerce Departments announced a new policy to deny export license applications for high-technology items that could contribute to Russia’s military capabilities. The two departments will revoke existing export licenses along those lines, the White House said in a statement.

    Among those targeted on Monday was Igor I. Sechin, president of the state-owned Rosneft oil company and a longtime Putin adviser. Although administration officials said over the weekend that they also expected Aleksei B. Miller, the head of the energy giant Gazprom, to possibly be targeted, Mr. Obama ultimately chose a list that did not include him.—-

    The European Union is expected to announce similar measures within a day or so, as Mr. Obama and European leaders strive to keep a united front in their campaign of pressure on Moscow.

    ————

    But Mr. Obama acknowledged, “We don’t yet know whether it is going to work,” and he left the door open to more sweeping sanctions against Russian industries like banking and defense.

    “The goal is not to go after Mr. Putin personally; the goal is to change his calculus, to encourage him to walk the walk, not just talk the talk” when it comes to diplomatic efforts to resolve the crisis, Mr. Obama said.

    Mr. Obama said the sanctions would affect high-tech military exports to Russia, because they are not “appropriate to be transferred in the current environment.”

    Comment by elmer — April 28, 2014 @ 8:37 am

  39. > Among those targeted on Monday was Igor I. Sechin, president of the state-owned Rosneft oil company and a longtime Putin adviser.

    How powerful! What a simple and elegant solution! Had Napoleon thought of financial sanctions against the (future) Russian poet Pushkin, Russia would have immediately surrendered to him, and Europe would now be called the French Empire, with greatly improved cheese and pastry selectikons. 🙂

    Comment by vladislav — April 28, 2014 @ 1:02 pm

  40. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hennadiy_Kernes

    In 2010 had his candidacy nominated for the Party of Regions in the elections to local authorities.

    Following the 2014 Ukrainian Revolution, he was accused of fomenting separatism

    He was noted for holding a strongly ‘pro-Russian’ stance and a supporter of Viktor Yanukovych. He was accused by Ukraine’s new pro-Western leaders two months ago of promoting separatism. However, more recently he is believed to have softened this position.[13]

    Comment by vladislav — April 28, 2014 @ 11:59 pm

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