Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

Saturday, March 08, 2014

ARRIVED IN VEGAS


I am in Las Vegas after a long flight yesterday from Portland-Newark-Vegas.  You are hit with high-tech slot machines as soon as you come off the plane at the airport. The terminal is quite grand, but also quite unimaginative.  In one massive rotunda they have four tall plastic palm trees standing there.  Kind of a true symbol of the unreality of this place.

I am staying in a $35 a night motel (who knew you could get a room in the US at that price anymore) sharing with Catholic Worker (CW) activist Dennis Apel who got me invited to speak to this west coast gathering of CW activists.  Dennis serves on our Global Network board and is hosting our conference next week in Santa Barbara, California.  He lives near there in a farmworker town called Santa Maria and runs a CW house.

Our cheap motel is one block off the original Vegas main drag.  These days the real action is in another part of town where the massive hotels have been built.  This place is a desert and water is at a premium, especially after several years of drought.  I just can't imagine all the water that is wasted to keep this city humming.

The CW retreat began last night with dinner and then introductions.  About 65 folks will be here.  I speak later today.  I know some of the people here having met them on many of my trips back and forth across the country over the years.

I've not been able to keep up so closely with the Ukraine situation during the last 24 hours but I notice that much interest is falling off anyway.  My blog hits dropped from over 2,000 in one day during this past week to just 690 yesterday.  It's hard to maintain that focus and interest over time.  Especially when you live in a country that has places such a premium on entertainment - just like here in Vegas.

I won't be throwing any $$$ into the gambling system while here.  I grew up poor and know the value of a dollar, even though it is shrinking.  I'd rather spend my money on food than hand it over to the mega-gambling corporations.

My oldest sister, a nurse, lives here in Vegas.  I'll have dinner with her tonight.  How can she stand this place?  It's hard to see much to like here - although the mountains in the distance do look lovely.

Update:  My talk was well received and we had a great Q & A session afterward.  Vegas has a massive homeless population.  It's kind of like the scar that exists on the injured public body in a city that sells itself on the "get rich quick" mythology that is such a big part of the capitalist system.

Friday, March 07, 2014

SHADES OF TRUTH



At an EU summit in Brussels, Ukraine's interim Prime Minister has claimed that there are Russian tanks on the ground in the country. That's despite Ukraine's own border patrol maintaining that no forces had crossed the frontier. Well in her regular report - Gayane Chichakyan has put together the many other claims around events in Ukraine that simply don't add up.

Thursday, March 06, 2014

STILL GOT HER JOB




A BIT OF HISTORY HELPS

David McReynolds was a long-time national staffer at War Resisters League in NYC.  He also ran for president as a Socialist Party candidate a couple times


Let me go back to 1956, and the Hungarian Revolution. Keep in mind that NATO was formed FIRST, and the Warsaw Pact formed AFTER that, so while we think of NATO as a response to the danger of Soviet actions in the West, it was NATO that consolidated Western military power. The Soviets, who above all else feared a united Germany aligned with the US (in the days immediately after the end of the war) had NOT integrated East Germany into the economic structure of the East, hoping it could persuade the West to agree to a neutral united Germany after the pattern of Austria and Finland.

Failing that, it then brought the GDR firmly into the Eastern Bloc.

Now lets go to Hungary. I argued then that the moment that the Hungarian revolution began (and that was a genuine revolution, unlike events in Kiev) I felt the West should say to the Soviets "if you let Hungary alone, withdraw your forces, we, in exchange, will dissolve NATO - since it is perfectly clear that, if you can't control the countries in your own bloc, you can't really pose a military threat to the West. Let us both dissolve our military blocs and move toward neutrality."

But no, the West hoped to "pick up Hungary" and when, much later, the USSR collapsed, Gorbachev thought he had an understanding that the West would NOT move its military posts toward the East. But of course it did - into Poland, it tried to do this with Georgia, and clearly has made that effort with Ukraine.

Yes yes, Ukraine should be independent, but once the government in Kiev (rotten as it was, it was still the only democratically elected government Ukraine had) was toppled, the Russian move into Crimea was inevitable.

We need "deep diplomacy" now, at which Germany (and Poland) might be helpful but the US not at all. The current "Putin bashing" carries us back to the Cold War days and is dangerous.

David McReynolds
New York City

DANCING WITH THE DEVILS


Co-Leaders (Or good cop - bad cop)

So what is a devil?
Is it religious
or cultural?

He works for the corporate man
who we call Mr. Big

The devil works hard for Mr. Big
he is ambitious
and self righteous
he is smart
and has been well screened
and watched
and tested
and trained
(that missing year in the bio)

The promise was made
when the white house deal
was cut
likely over a whiskey
in the padded leather chairs
inside the dark wooden walls

Obama gets to be prez
McCain took the fall
like a good wrestler would
McCain gets to 'serve'
as sort of hidden
co-prez
to guide the young man
to run the military arm
for Mr. Big

Some say its a good job
but only a few dare apply
there are strings attached
and anyone who values
their heart
can't chance it

Today they both
ordered the war planes
up along the bear's border
that disputed border
we can't really see from here
because it is so far away

But that is why we have CNN
its their job to fill our heads
with what Mr. Big wants us to hear

Mr. Big wants control of everything
but there are a few places
on the spinning orb
that don't want to hand the store keys
over to our mobsters

They all seem to play
dirty at times in this dirty world

Who are we to love and cheer,
to side with?
Who is righteous?

Back here at home the clock winds onward
many move on to daily chores and such
Mr. Big keeps working his magic
and then some...
He has the devil on his side.

GALLOWAY ON UKRAINE



Much of the media's reporting on the geopolitical tensions surrounding Ukraine has focused on the US and Russia. Missing from that coverage has been reaction from the European Union.

RT's Ameera David speaks with George Galloway, a member of Parliament from the United Kingdom's Respect Party, about the Ukrainian conflict and asks how he would like to see the EU proceed.

HARD TIMES AHEAD IN UKRAINE




The self-proclaimed government in Kiev is reportedly planning to cut pensions by 50 percent as part of unprecedented austerity measures to save Ukraine from default. With an “empty treasury”, reduction of payments might take place in March. Ukraine’s Ministry of Social Policy reported on December 1, 2013, that an average pension in Ukraine is $160....The European Commission offered Ukraine an 11 billion euro loan if Kiev agrees a deal with the IMF, European Commission President Jose Barroso announced on Wednesday. As a rule, help from financial organizations such as the IMF or the World Bank normally includes drastic austerity measures. Accepting IMF money will mean many sacrifices for Ukraine’s economy, which are likely to include increased gas bills, frozen government salaries, and all around budget cuts. 

  • Presumptive Democratic Party presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is calling Putin another Hitler for his "invasion of Crimea".  Here we have the US, with more than 800 military bases around the world, lecturing Russia on such matters.  The US spends more $$$ on weapons and war than all other nations on the planet combined.  The US invades countries willy-nilly to grab their resources.  It's a classic case of the pot calling the kettle black.  

  • Early tomorrow morning I head to Las Vegas to speak at the annual Pacific Life Community retreat.  This west coast gathering of Catholic Worker activists and their supporters will run March 7-10 and will include morning peace vigils at Creech AFB (major drone operations base), Nellis AFB, and the Nevada Test Site.

  • Then on March 14-16 I will be in Santa Barbara, California for the Global Network's 22nd annual space organizing conference.  Things get started with a March 14 protest at Vandenberg AFB (major space launch center) and on March 15 we will hold an exciting public forum in Santa Barbara featuring some great speakers.  You can find the whole schedule of events here.   

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

YOU DECIDE



Putin at news conference yesterday.

It's long but quite interesting.

'MISSILE DEFENSE' AGENCY..... RIGHT ON SCHEDULE



Fiscal Year 2015 Missile Defense Agency (MDA) Budget Press Briefing

You might not watch all of this so I thought I share a few of this officer's words on the new "missile defense" (MD) budget request:

  • "due to recent threat developments"
  • The new missile defense interceptor "kill vehicle" will allow for "new tactics in weapons doctrine"
  • The MDA is "engineering the kill chain from beginning to end"
  •  New accuracy will "allow the war fighters to dramatically improve their shot doctrine"
  • The budget will allow the MDA to "continue to support Israel's missile defense program"
  • The MDA request for 2015 is $7.459 billion
  • "We need our allies in the Gulf and Europe to step up and contribute and they are"
  • The sale of two THAAD missile defense batteries to the United Arab Emirates "helps us get our price down"

It's always interesting to hear the words these guys use to sell their program.  The phrase "new tactics in weapons doctrine" makes me think they are talking about further improvements on the Pentagon's first-strike attack program which is job #1 of the MD program.  Star Wars lives.

Acknowledging that this high-tech program is a tremendous challenge, and very expensive, one major task of the MDA is to sell the program to the allies.  They use the words "interoperability" and "integration" which means nothing more than the allies help pay for this global MD system but it all has to be run through and controlled by the Pentagon's military space satellite and global ground station network.

The "recent threats developments" subtly points to Russia.  Clearly the Pentagon will use the Ukraine-Russia "crisis" to get even more funds than previously expected.  Watch out food stamps, education, and ultimately the Social Security program.  These cats are coming for the whole ball of wax.

It's a good time to hit the streets folks.  Tie all these issues up in a nice bundle so people can see the writing on the wall.

THE PLOT THICKENS



Kiev snipers hired by Maidan leaders - leaked EU's Ashton phone tape

RT


The snipers who shot at protesters and police in Kiev were allegedly hired by Maidan leaders, according to a leaked phone conversation between the EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton and Estonian foreign affairs minister, which has emerged online.

There is now stronger and stronger understanding that behind the snipers, it was not Yanukovich, but it was somebody from the new coalition,” Urmas Paet said during the conversation.

“I think we do want to investigate. I mean, I didn’t pick that up, that’s interesting. Gosh,” Ashton answered.

The call took place after Estonia’s Foreign Minister Urmas Paet visited Kiev on February 25, following the peak of clashes between the pro-EU protesters and security forces in the Ukrainian capital.

Paet also recalled his conversation with a doctor who treated those shot by snipers in Kiev. She said that both protesters and police were shot at by the same people.

“And second, what was quite disturbing, this same Olga [Bogomolets] told as well that all the evidence shows that the people who were killed by snipers from both sides, among policemen and then people from the streets, that they were the same snipers killing people from both sides,” the Estonian FM stressed.

Ashton reacted to the information by saying: “Well, yeah…that’s, that’s terrible.”

“So that she then also showed me some photos she said that as a medical doctor she can say that it is the same handwriting, the same type of bullets, and it’s really disturbing that now the new coalition, that they don’t want to investigate what exactly happened,” Paet said.

Olga Bogomolets was the main doctor for the Maidan mobile clinic when protests turned violent in Kiev. She treated the gravely injured and helped organized their transportation to neighboring countries, who had expressed a willingness to treat those with severe wounds. From the outset, Olga blamed the injuries and deaths on snipers. She turned down the position of Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine for Humanitarian Affairs offered by the coup-appointed regime.

The Estonian FM has described the whole sniper issue as “disturbing” and added, “it already discredits from the very beginning” the new Ukrainian power.

His overall impressions of what he saw during his one-day trip to Kiev are “sad,” Paet said during the conversation.

He stressed that the Ukrainian people don’t trust the Maidan leaders, with all the opposition politicians slated to join the new government “having dirty past.”

The file was reportedly uploaded to the web by officers of Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) loyal to ousted President Viktor Yanukovich who hacked Paet’s and Ashton’s phones.

94 people were killed and another 900 injured during the standoff between police and protesters at Maidan Saquare in Kiev last month.

PROOF IS IN THE PUDDING


My mother used to say "the proof is in the pudding".  In the case of the US strategy concerning Ukraine and Russia the 'ugly facts' are starting to tell the real story.

At least five of those appointed to the 'new revolutionary cabinet' in Ukraine come from the ultra-right nationalist (neo-Nazi) Svoboda and Right Sector parties.  One of those appointments is the Deputy Secretary of National Security & Defense Council which likely means alot of head busting if anyone 'gets out of line'.

On the question of Russia's 'invasion' of Crimea RT reports:

In 1997, amid the wreckage of the USSR, Russia & Ukraine signed a Partition Treaty determining the fate of the military bases and vessels in Crimea. The deal sparked widespread officer ‘defections’ to Russia and was ratified by the Russian & Ukrainian parliaments in 1999. Russia received 81.7 percent of the fleet’s ships after paying the Ukrainian government US$526.5 million. The deal allowed the Russian Black Sea Fleet to stay in Crimea until 2017. This was extended by another 25 years to 2042 with a 5-year extension option in 2010. Moscow annually writes off $97.75 million of Kiev’s debt for the right to use Ukrainian waters and radio frequencies, and to compensate for the Black Sea Fleet’s environmental impact. The Russian navy is allowed up to 25,000 troops. 

The Global Network has long been claiming that the US intends to further expand NATO and escalate deployment of so-called "missile defense" systems surrounding Russia (and China). This morning's news brings more on both these vital topics. 

From KyivPost they announce:

The possible deployment of U.S. missile defense components on Ukrainian territory in exchange for U.S. financial support to Kyiv is a subject of negotiations, Ukrainian Ambassador in Minsk Mykhailo Yezhel said. "This is a subject of negotiations. As they say, shoot first and ask questions later," the ambassador told reporters in Minsk on Wednesday, speaking of the possible deployment of U.S. missile defense components in Ukraine as a condition of financial support to the crisis-ridden country.

On the issue of NATO expansion The Voice of Russia reports:

Ukraine’s parliament has allegedly registered a bill that aims to put the former Soviet republic on tracks towards joining the military NATO bloc. This is according to the secretariat of the Verkhovna Rada. The draft law on Ukrainian accession to the North-Atlantic alliance was submitted by the opposition-turned-ruling party Batkyvshchina who claimed that Ukraine’s military neutrality would not guarantee its safety. The initiative reportedly proposes to amend the country’s national security and home/foreign policy laws to define Euro-Atlantic integration and NATO accession as Ukraine’s foreign policy course.

It's really too bad that none of these stories are reported in western media but by now we should all understand that the corporate dominated mouth pieces have bigger fish to fry - such as mind-washing the public to support anything and everything that the oil-i-garchy is doing.

In the end there can be little doubt that the US and NATO are going for Russia's throat - maybe one could call it the 'final solution'.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

22nd ANNUAL GLOBAL NETWORK CONFERENCE


THIS IS WHAT FASCISM LOOKS LIKE



Far-right radicals in Ukraine stormed a city council meeting last week, wearing masks and armed with bats and hammers.

A group of nationalist-radical group ‘Right Sector’ broke into a City Council meeting in the town of Vasilkov, outside the Ukrainian capital, Kiev.

See the whole story here

BOXING IN THE BEAR


I am learning so much from all this work going on now about Ukraine.  Statements, or even meanderings, have been slow to come from the leadership of many peace groups in the US and then they've been very cautious.  Caution even from folks who know what is really going on.  The old ‘anti-reds’ hysteria from the past still lives here in the US of A.  But the up swell of interest and concern from every day grassroots activists is strong and they are seeing the bigger picture.

The big picture is what drives me.... I’m a visual learner.  Once I get a feel for what is going on I can then find the rest of the pieces filling in the puzzle on the wall.  So here are a few more sharings of some good honest thinking by some stalwarts in the peace movement.

I suspect this entire Ukraine Crisis had been war-gamed and war planned quite some time ago at the highest levels of US/NATO. Notice DOD slipped 2 US warships into the Black Sea just before the Olympics under a patently absurd pretext. In other words, what we are seeing unfold here is a US/NATO War Plan. They instigated the fascist coup against Yanukovich. They anticipated that Putin would then respond by taking over Crimea. I suspect the US/NATO/EU response will be to introduce military forces into Western Ukraine and Kiev and thus make Ukraine a de facto member of NATO, which has been their objective all along. They have already anticipated what Putin’s next move after that will be. Notice also the massive anti-Russian campaign by the Western News Media working in lock-step with each other. Another sign that all this has been planned well in advance.  I suspect that US/NATO/EU figure that Putin knows they have this offensive, first-strike strategic nuclear capability with a rudimentary ABM/BMD capability so that at the end of the day he will be forced to stand down—or else. Compellence as opposed to Deterrence. Just like during the Cuban Missile Crisis. That is where this US/NATO/EU War Plan is heading on the assumptions that they can keep their deliberate Escalation Dominance under their control and that at the end day Putin will be forced to stand down just like Khrushchev did and for the same reasons. That would leave US/NATO/EU in control of at least half of Ukraine as a de facto NATO member state.

  - Francis A. Boyle, Champaign, IL, Lawyer, professor of International Law, and long-time peacenik


Last summer when I went to a conference in the Philippines on the US "pivot" to Asia-Pacific I met Dr. Chandra Muzaffar, President of the International Movement for a Just World in Malaysia.  This white haired elder man, in a wheel chair, glowed with a beauty of love and joy.  When he spoke about globalization's control of governments I was listening hard.  He wrote this (and more) here: 

If Ukraine is on the brink of a catastrophe, it is mainly because the present regime in Kiev and its supporters, backed by certain Western powers had violated a fundamental principle of democratic governance. They had ousted a democratically elected president through illegal means. President Viktor Yanukovich who had come to power through a free and fair election in 2010 should have been removed through the ballot-box.

His opponents not only betrayed a democratic principle. They subverted a ‘Peace Deal’ signed between them and Yanukovich on 21 February 2014 in which the latter had agreed to form a national unity government within 10 days that would include opposition representatives; reinstate the 2004 Constitution; relinquish control over Ukraine’s security services; and hold presidential and parliamentary elections by December 2014. According to the Deal, endorsed by Germany, France and Poland, Yanukovich would remain president until the elections.

His co-signatories had no intention of honouring the agreement. Without following procedures, parliament, with the backing of the military, voted immediately to remove Yanukovich and impeach him. The Parliamentary Speaker was elected interim President and after a few days a new regime was installed.

-  Dr. Chandra Muzaffar, Malaysia

A key bit that must continually be inserted into discussions about Ukraine is NATO expansion and US "missile defense" deployments encircling Russia.

When the Berlin Wall fell in December of 1991 the Soviet Union disintegrated into fifteen separate countries.  Daddy Bush’s Secretary of State James Baker promised Mikhail Gorbachev, the Soviet Union’s last leader, that NATO would not expand one-centimeter eastward.  Once Clinton took over he broke the promise and since that time NATO has been on steroids.  NATO now includes Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Albania, and Croatia.... with Georgia and Ukraine waiting in the wings.

If you are Russia you are freaking out.  Also consider NATO bases encircling Russia and new "missile defense" deployments going into Poland, Romania, Turkey and on US Navy Aegis destroyers (outfitted with MD interceptors) in the Black, Barents, Bering, and Mediterranean Seas.  It's a chess game and US-NATO has now checkmated Russia.  The ultimatum is either surrender (your natural gas, oil and national treasury) or face a unified NATO economic freeze and war if need be.  It’s high-stakes… high-risk strategy…Texas style.

Admittedly this is a grab by the oil-i-garchs for total global control.  The people are the pawns, easily cast aside when need be.  The way I figure it, my job is to keep learning about all this and sharing it with others.  Don’t fear the anti-commie BS that is used to put people back ‘into their place’.  I don’t like people telling me what I can do or say…. I heard enough of that stuff while in the Air Force during the Vietnam War. 

Help illuminate the picture on the wall for more to see.  We've all, worldwide, got to create a unified demand to shut the capitalist war system down.  The corporate fascists have taken over.  It's the high-tech version of feudalism.

Stop taking the blue pill. 

RISING TO THE TOP


Monday, March 03, 2014

LIGHTING THE FIRES FOR CHAOS IN UKRAINE

A couple of people have wondered if I exaggerated the possibility of war with Russia over Ukraine.  I don't think so - in fact I would suggest that the proxy war is already underway.

Two of the first things that happened following the US led coup d'etat in Ukraine was the "new government" declaring that Russian would be removed as one of the official languages (Ukraine has millions of Russians in it) and that the ban on Nazi symbols and ideology would be lifted.  It cannot be said often enough that many of the violent agitators in Kiev were in fact the ultra-nationalist descendants of those Ukrainian Nazi sympathizers who supported Hitler's invasion of the former Soviet Union during WW II.

But there is even more.  NSNBC International reports the following:

Being one of the most reliable sources of information about the activities of Turkey’s intelligence service MIT and Turkey’s armed forces, Aydinlik Daily quotes a “source that has spoken with the newspaper”, alleging, that an intelligence unit linked to Turkey’s intelligence service MIT has headed to the Ukrainian Autonomous Republic Crimea to provoke Crimean Turks to act against the ethnic Russian majority and Russian interests in the autonomous republic. The source reported that the deployment of the Turkish unit has been coordinated with both the USA and EU.

Translated this essentially means that for all the moralistic talk coming from the Obama administration about how Russia should not be intervening in Crimea, the US-NATO are, and have been, deeply embedded in the drive to take over Ukraine.

Russian intelligence obviously is aware that this "low intensity" warfare is now being directed by US-NATO.  That is why Putin asked his governing body for permission to move Russian forces into the Crimea to stabilize the situation. 

I am indeed a lifelong peace activist.  I don't support war.  But I also have always believed that someone under attack has the right to defend himself or herself.  Whether they were the Native Americans; people in Nicaragua being attacked by the US funded and trained Contras; the Syrian government now under attack by CIA and Saudi Arabian funded and trained Al Qaeda forces; or anywhere else - they have a right to defend their lands. 

This morning I watched a bit of mainstream TV news just to get a feel for what the talking heads were saying.  Here are some of the things I heard:

  • We must put economic sanctions on Russia
  • Putin does "not care" what the US thinks
  • We must "roll back this Russian invasion"
  • Putin is not in touch with reality
  • It's almost like we are dealing with North Korea
  • Putin is "unstable"
  • There is "confusion in Moscow"
  • Putin is clumsy
  • There could be a military collision
  • US should help bail out Ukraine
The blog post below with the video of Victoria Nuland speaking last December, on a stage decorated with the logos of ExxonMobil and Chevron, is particularly important as she reveals that the oil-i-garchy "invested" $5 billion in this project.  There can be no doubt that the US-NATO have pulled this stunt and is that not a violation of international law to destabilize and overthrow an elected government?  (Even if you don't approve of it?)  Is that not an act of war toward neighboring Russia and would not Russia have the right to take measures to stabilize the situation?

Yesterday I watched a video from a news conference where Ukrainian Navy Rear Admiral Berezovsky (who had just been appointed to that post by the "new revolutionary government" in Kiev) had come to Crimea and announced that he was not going to support the coup d'etat and instead pledged himself to the Crimean government, which is allied to Russia.  The mainstream American media this morning was spinning that story by saying Berozovsky had "surrendered" to Russia.

As you can see on the map above this whole situation is about natural gas and oil.  Russia's huge supplies of natural gas are shipped to Europe and other locations by pipelines that run throughout Ukraine.  ExxonMobil, Chevron and other western oil majors want control of these resources.  Like we've seen in Iraq, Libya, Venezuela and other places that have natural resources, Mr. Big is quite willing to destabilize and go to war if necessary to grab these resources. This is a long-term project by the US-NATO and they are just getting started.

Mr. Big is a bully and when anyone stands up to the bully they will be demonized.  

Sunday, March 02, 2014

NULAND ACKNOWLEDGES US "INVESTED" $5 BILLION IN UKRANIAN COUP



Victoria Nuland admits "we've invested $5 billion" in the Ukraine project....that part picks up at the 7:25 mark in the video.

Note the ExxonMobil and Chevron logos on the stage......and remember that the oil-i-garchy wants Russian natural gas and oil supplies.  Add it up, mix in the usual modus operandi, stir and what you get is chaos, instability and regime change.

What is Russia to do?  Roll over and watch themselves get raped?

The US knew that Russia would react, that is why we've witnessed massive corporate media demonization of Russia during the past year or so.  It helps make it easier for the American people to swallow another one of our interventions.

Robert Parry at Consortium News writes:

Nuland was soon at work planning for “regime change,” encouraging disruptive street protests by personally passing out cookies to the anti-government demonstrators. She didn’t seem to notice or mind that the protesters in Kiev’s Maidan square had hoisted a large banner honoring Stepan Bandera, a Ukrainian nationalist who collaborated with the German Nazis during World War II and whose militias participated in atrocities against Jews and Poles.

By late January, Nuland was discussing with U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt who should be allowed in the new government.

“Yats is the guy,” Nuland said in a phone call to Pyatt that was intercepted and posted online. “He’s got the economic experience, the governing experience. He’s the guy you know.” By “Yats,” Nuland was referring to Arseniy Yatsenyuk, who had served as head of the central bank, foreign minister and economic minister — and who was committed to harsh austerity.

As Assistant Secretary Nuland and Sen. John McCain cheered the demonstrators on, the street protests turned violent. Police clashed with neo-Nazi bands, the ideological descendants of Bandera’s anti-Russian Ukrainians who collaborated with the Nazi SS during World War II.

With the crisis escalating and scores of people killed in the street fighting, Yanukovych agreed to a E.U.-brokered deal that called for moving up scheduled elections and having the police stand down. The neo-Nazi storm troopers then seized the opening to occupy government buildings and force Yanukovych and many of his aides to flee for their lives. 

RISING AGAINST PIPELINE


THOU HYPOCRITE


BBC reports:

John Kerry told US media Russia might "not even remain in the G8" and Russian President Vladimir Putin might "find himself with asset freezes".

"You just don't in the 21st-Century behave in 19th-Century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped-up pretext," Mr Kerry told the CBS program Face the Nation.

"Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye." - Matthew 7:5

One might understand why I have such a hard time stomaching anything I hear from the corporate dominated Democratic Party these days.



PREPARING FOR WAR WITH RUSSIA


I've been writing for many years about US-NATO efforts to militarily surround Russia.  The oil-i-garchy wants to get ahold of the natural gas (the world's largest supply) that sits on Russian territory.  It also wants full control of the Arctic region now that climate change will make it possible to drill for oil there.  Russia has a huge northern coastal border with the Arctic and thus stands in the way of western oil control.

Already the war drums are sounding after Russia moved more troops into Crimea to protect its Navy base and the large pro-Russian population in the region.

Writing yesterday in Foreign Policy Admiral James Stavridis (Ret) called for NATO to immediately increase "all intelligence-gathering functions through satellite, Predator unmanned vehicles, and especially cyber" and to sail "NATO maritime forces into the Black Sea and setting up contingency plans for their use."  This is full-blown war talk - with Russia. Admiral Stavridis was Supreme Allied Commander at NATO from 2009 to 2013. He is currently dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.

If Stavridis is saying these things you can just imagine what plans are underway inside the Pentagon and at NATO HQ in Europe.

The Russians know that they are being set up.  Reporting for Asia Times, Pepe Escobar wrote, "Even before neo-con Victoria 'fuck the EU' Nuland’s intercept, [Russian intelligence] had already identified the wider mechanics of the CIA-style coup – including Turkish intelligence financing Tatars in Crimea... And what will the Tatars in Crimea do? Stage a jihad? Wait: the 'West' will surely try to FINANCE THIS JIHAD."

It's Syria all over again, this time right on the Russian border.

Except this time the US-NATO are messing with a country that has the capability to fight back.  This is how world wars get started.  The Russians are not going to idly sit by and watch US-NATO set up a right-wing fascist state right on their border.  Hitler tried that during WW II and at least 20 million died defending the Soviet Union.  Ever since then the Russian people have been 'sensitive' about defending their immediate borders. 

The decision adopted on March 1, by the Federation Council, upper house of the Russian parliament, which allows Putin to send troops to Crimea, an autonomy within neighboring Ukraine, aims to protect life and security, Irina Yarovaya, chair of the Security and Anti-Corruption Committee in the State Duma (lower house of parliament), said.

“Terrorism is the most dangerous crime around the world. But it is fascism and terrorism that have proclaimed their power in Ukraine and pose a real threat to the life and security of Russian citizens living in Ukraine and undoubtedly to the brotherly people of Ukraine,” she said.

“We have repeatedly warned the international community and the US against interfering in the internal affairs of Ukraine,” she said, adding “some European and US politicians bear direct responsibility for the crisis in Ukraine, for the bloodshed and for the coup.”

She believes that Obama’s latest statement on Russia “has fully exposed the US policy of brutal interference in the sovereign rights of other countries and aggressive imposition of its interests.”

Of course the Obama administration is saying that Russia is violating international law by moving more troops into Crimea.  Obama is threatening Russia with "severe consequences".  And now you can be sure that NATO is indeed preparing 'contingency plans'.

The open question is how will the American people react to all of this?  They rightly opposed Obama's desired cruise missile attack on Syria.  Will they be as wise about planting the cancerous NATO flag on Crimean soil?

Clearly Putin and Russia have been thoroughly demonized in the passive minds of most American citizens.  But will they shake the cobwebs from their brains and see the absurdity and sheer recklessness of US-NATO saber rattling on the doorstep of Mother Russia?

Now is the time for all peaceful people to speak out.  Before the real shooting starts.

SUNDAY SONG