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WESTERN VALUES™. So now RT America is a "foreign agent". (Remember all the faux outrage about Russia's FARA imitation law? No? But it was only a year ago: "Russia: Four years of Putin’s ‘Foreign Agents’ law to shackle and silence NGOs". Hard to keep up, isn't it?) In case you think this reflects poorly on the "champion for free speech and free press", John McCain, channelling Brezhnev, explains why it doesn't. In the Cold War they blocked us but we didn't bother to block them. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to figure it out: the side that mostly lies wants to stop its population hearing the side that mostly tells the truth. One reason is that telling (mostly) the truth is just easier. For example, Russian propaganda for the home audience lets the Western side say whatever it wants as long as it wants. Why? "the Russians have no need to lie, their propaganda is fundamentally truthful, fact based and logical…. unlike their American counterparts, the Russians are not engaging in policies which they cannot justify before their own public opinion or before the public opinion of the rest of the planet". In Syria the Russians are doing what they say they are doing; no need to explain why Russian troops supposedly in Ukraine can't be seen; there are no Pokemon stories in Russia. In short, Russian propaganda is all made in the West and every idiotic story is re-played. "So yes, the Russians are using the immense arrogance and poorly-concealed hatred for Russia of some of the more pompous and least intelligent representatives of the West to paint an absolutely fair and accurate representation of the western ruling elites".

SPEAKING OF THINGS HARD TO JUSTIFY before the Western public. "Raqqa’s dirty secret…. a secret deal that let hundreds of IS fighters…. escape from Raqqa, under the gaze of the US and British-led coalition…". "Some of the U.S.-made weapons available on these markets likely first entered Syria as part of an ill-fated Pentagon program to train and equip fighters in northern Syria to take on the Islamic State." Are these bugs or features? Either way, the West isn't doing what it says it is doing.

RELIGION. I found this video interesting: Putin and most of the Russian religious establishment (named here, but not the RC Ordinary for some reason) honour Minim and Pozharsky. That's diversity.

RUSSIA INC. Inflation fell to 2.7% in October; this is a post USSR record low. Slowly but surely.

BOMB SCARES. There have been a series of hoax bomb scares across Russia lately. Phoned in from abroad we are told. Wondered that myself: I'm not suggesting it was governments but the panic is constantly pumped higher and there are a lot of excitable people out there.

REMITTANCES. A study shows that all FUSSR states except Russia and Kazakhstan are "intensely dependent" on remittances. Author's summary: "a new system of transnational, cross-border dependency, unprecedented in its intensity". The two "magnets" are the EU and Russia. An interesting take on the post-Soviet reality; at the end of the day, you're either a dependent of one or of the other.

AMERICA-HYSTERICA. Best summary of the story so far: "The two sources that originated the allegations claiming that Russia meddled in the 2016 election… were both paid for by the Democratic National Committee…". Even the MSM is starting to notice (WSJ): "The Clinton campaign commissioned a foreign ex-spy to gin up rumors, which made it to U.S. intelligence agencies, and then got reporters to cite it as government-sourced." Crowdstrike and Fusion GPS are the ur-sources. We get closer: a Fusion GPS exec spent seven hours with the House Committee on Tuesday. Bershidsky, no friend to Putin & Co, points out how ludicrous the theories have become. This was never expected to become public; it was supposed to stay in the background of her march to the White House.

PUTIN DERANGEMENT SYNDROME. Spreading fast. "How the Russian meddling machine won the online battle of the illegal referendum" (El Pais). "Putin's lying machine: Revealed, how Russia's spewing out ruthless propaganda… ". Enjoy the map which shows how the Kremlin is "stoking discord" around the world. Again we see that lying takes more effort. And a constant effort too: always plugging holes in the narrative which gets ever more preposterous. (But read the comments: the story isn't selling well).

MAYBE FILE. "American" LNG delivered to Europe is actually purchased in Russia. Same source said "American" coal for Ukraine also came from Russia. It wouldn't surprise me, but I await confirmation.

SYRIA. The Syrians have liberated Abu Kamal, the last urban hold of Daesh in Syria; 25 months after Russia intervened. Some American talking heads are still in denial (more convolution).

UKRAINE. Maidan II continues but the WMSM doesn't see it. On Sunday Saakashvili led a march demanding Poroshenko's impeachment. Couldn't make this stuff up.


© Patrick Armstrong Analysis, Canada Russia Observer

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  1. Grazhdanochka says:

    The ‘Dirty Raqqa Secret’ of course is not anything unprecedented in this War (R+6 has long suggested that ISIS has been tolerated in its movements so long as they go in the right direction, furthermore that some Withdrawls took Place or ‘Uniform Switches’ of various Tribes) – It does however come awkwardly after such a big deal was made by the Coalition about the Syrian Governments transfer Deal of ISIS Fighters/Families from the Lebanese Border Region to Dayr ez Zaur…
    As for Putin Derangement Syndrome let us Remember:
    Russia has been responsible for Weaponizing – Refugees, Football Hooligans (Read: Special Forces), Social Media, Energy, Misinformation, History to name a few….
    Somehow the Government is able to do all of this, in addition to keeping Thousands of Soldiers in Ukraine and Syria – Losing thousands more Casualties in the process that the others have to Incinerate in Mobile Crematoriums but it still having enough ready to threaten the rest of Europe.. Meanwhile the rest of its Citizenry either are working in Troll Farms, Protesting or battling Corruption/Alcohol..
    Still despite all this and an Economy that does not produce anything – it has the expertise to switch a US Election via a Media Campaign that saw roughly the Investment Ratio of Approximately 1:40.000 versus the other US Candidates.
    What a Time to be alive!

  2. b says:

    Thanks Patrick, one correction. Abu Kamal is not liberated yet. Syrian forces came into the “empty” towncenter, were ambushed and mauled. A new attempt on the town will be made in a day or two.
    I once made a collection of “Russia weaponizes …” stories. According to U.S. media Russia’s arsenal includes nail-guns, robotic cockroaches and Jedi mind tricks

  3. Walker says:

    “Putin’s lying machine: Revealed, how Russia’s spewing out ruthless propaganda… “.
    Any time I see the word “spewing” I stop reading.

  4. Anna says:

    “Russia has been responsible for Weaponizing…”
    Amazing. Is this voice coming directly from Israel (irritated by the perspective of the end of slaughter in Syria) or this is a feeble paraphrase of the vacuous speech of May?

  5. “Crowdstrike and Fusion GPS are the ur-sources”
    Actually, while it is possible that CrowdStrike’s boss is behind the “DNC hack” scam, I think it equally or more likely that it originated from some Ukrainian-American DNC/Clinton campaign workers, specifically Alexandra Chalupa.
    As I recall, she was one of the first to claim being “hacked by Russians” as far back as May 3, 2016.
    Exclusive: Suspected Russian hack of DNC widens — includes personal email of staffer researching Manafort
    If anyone would be interested in covering up the DNC leak by blaming it on “Russian hacking”, it would be a Ukrainian with direct connections to the Ukrainian government, Ukrainian right-wing political factions and Ukrainian hacker collectives. I think she originated and proposed the entire scam to the DNC and Clinton campaign and they then brought in CrowdStrike to ‘certify” it.

  6. There’s a definite Ukrainian connection there. I can’t find the stuff George Eliason has done on the subject but he’s been on to it from Day 1. What I meant was that the Crowstrike “analysis” — all that nonsense about crack Russian hackers putting a Pole’s name in there — was the official source. When and where exactly the idea of covering up the fix by inventing the Russia hacked it and gave it to WikiLeaks story originated we may never learn.

  7. Cameron says:

    Mr. Armstrong, you reference the Clinton campaign hiring a “foreign ex-spy.” Are you referring to Christopher Steele, and, if so, why do you not find him credible? I am always suspicious of stories I read in the Guardian, but he does sound like the real thing in the article I read.

  8. JamesT says:

    I was in Syria about 2 years before the Arab Spring, in a Damascus apartment with a Syrian guy I had befriended. We were sitting there, talking, playing with his kids, and he was absentmindedly flipping channels on his TV. Click, click, click … and up comes CNN. I was dumfounded. I said “Dude – you get CNN???”. He looked at me like I was simple and said “Of course”.

  9. pantaraxia says:

    “On Sunday Saakashvili led a march demanding Poroshenko’s impeachment. Couldn’t make this stuff up.”
    More stuff you couldn’t make up.
    Another False Flag Terror ADMISSION: Snipers In the Ukraine “Protests”
    “Italy’s 11th largest newspaper – Il Giornale – reported on an admission by several of the snipers
    Revazishvilli’s confessions and two other Georgians … reveal a different and disconcerting truth. … Revazishvilli and his two companions …are a former member of the security services of former Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili and two former militants of his party.”
    It seems Saakashvili was a player in the Maidan revolution after all. This certainly gives Poroshenko ammunition to counter Saakashvili’s so-called anti-corruption crusade. Hopefully they will destroy each other. ( So much for my long-standing suspicions that it was Kolomoisky who was behind the Maidan massacre.)

  10. Ivan Katchanovsky in Ottawa has been on to the story from the start and is very interested in these latest revelations and is tracking them down. Can’t immediately find his original paper and investigation but here’s a reference from a couple of years ago.
    I know him, he is extraordinary thorough and if he says it was a false flag you can take it to the bank. Don’t forget Ashton-Paet conversation. In short this has all be out there for years but the Italian documentary is a real breakthrough.
    The other tie in is some of the snipers were from Lithuania and that gives us a link to Vilnius snipers of 1991 (date?)and that nasty little regime.

  11. I don’t find him credible because what he produced is not. The Russians compromised Trump years before he said he would run for Pres at a time when nobody would have given him a chance?

  12. It’s just a load of crap. that’s all.
    And Remember, none of this stuff was ever supposed to become public. The Steele garbage was the way to do a modern Watergate breakin.

  13. Patrick Armstrong,
    There are plenty of reasons to doubt Steele and his “dodgy dossier,” but the reason you cited isn’t one of them. Trump first expressed interest in the presidency in 1988. He ran for the Reform Party candidacy in 1999. Oddly enough, Roger Stone was involved in that early campaign. He also considered running in 2012. And I’m sure you’re familiar with the Soviet and Russian intel services penchant for grooming and recruiting agents early and having the patience to wait for them to grow into a position of influence. I’m not saying Trump was recruited or even developed. I seriously doubt it. I would think Trump would be notoriously difficult to handle, but it would have been prudent of RIS to keep an eye on him.

  14. Golly! Just imagine what they’ve got on the Clintons.

  15. SmoothieX12 says:

    Another thing of note is how the size of single remaining Project 941 (NATO Typhoon, in reality it is Akula) strategic missile submarine which nears its obsolescence and serves mostly as a test bed for new SLBMs relates to Russian propaganda. Daily Mail and its bright graphics somehow failed to elaborate properly on that issue. In the end, newest Borey-class SSBNs (Boomers) are way more dangerous that this largest submarine. But then, they don’t call them Daily Fail in UK for nothing. Comments section, however, gives some reasons for hope.

  16. Anna says:

    Then how the incurious George the Lesser had become a US president, with his stunning biography? By the way, his father was the former Director of the CIA.

  17. I think she was being sarcastic.

  18. Any time the WMSM starts talking about Putin or Russia, I spew.

  19. I just found out about the Sakashivilli/Maidan allegations yesterday. While I was sure that the Maidan shootings were a false-flag from the start, I was surprised that Georgians were involved. I had always assumed that the snipers were from Pravy Sektor or some similar group. I assumed that’s why their ‘Führer’, Sashko Bily, was murdered two weeks after the coup – to protect that secret.
    Still, it’s hard to see who really profits from this. Sakashivilli, of course, loses; but the Kiev régime hardly benefits, since they now have to admit that what we were all saying from the start was true: the Maidan shootings were a false-flag.

  20. Back in the Middle Ages, we had the devil as the all-purpose explanation for everything that goes wrong. Now we have Russia instead.

  21. All,
    One useful thing to have out of Sir Robert Owen’s farce of an ‘Inquiry’ into the Litvinenko affair is that one is provided with transcripts of much of the output of what at times I came to think could have been renamed the ‘Berezovsky Broadcasting Corporation.’
    The degree of credulity with which claims by that appalling figure and his associates were accepted in Britain, and to a somewhat lesser extent the United States, were received, beggars belief.
    And it now seems likely that a great deal of the ‘narrative’ in these was shaped by Christopher Steele, in collaboration with associates of Berezovsky, in particular the U.S.-based Alex Goldfarb, a particularly creepy person who was I think the brains behind the operation, insofar as there were any.
    Here, the April 2007 study ‘The Litvinenko File’ by the former BBC Moscow Correspondent Martin Sixsmith is particularly interesting. It tells us that Goldfarb’s grandfather had been KGB station chief in San Francisco from 1941 to 1945, and had been shocked to find that – as a reward for his attempts to subvert the constitutional order in the United States – when he returned to Russia he had been arrested by the NKVD as part of the ‘Doctor’s Plot’ hysteria.
    If one scratches beneath the surface, one can see that a transnational ‘information operations’ network was always involved, acting in support of a range of different projects for ‘régime change.’
    A particularly interesting item is a transcript sent out from the Cabinet Office of a 16 December 2006 BBC Radio 4 programme entitled ‘The Litvinenko Mystery’, presented by Tom Mangold. The ‘subject’ is described by the official responsible as ‘Investigation in to the Death of Alexander Litvinenko – Major Yuri Shvets & Bobby Levinson.’
    (See )
    This tells a pathetic story of how Litvinenko was forced to turn an honest penny by ‘due diligence’ work because, alone and without means of subsistence in a strange country, he was faced by ht e appalling prospect of having himself and his wife and young son completely without means of support. Supposedly, the extremism of his allegations against Putin had been too much even for Berezovsky, and he had been largely cut loose by his erstwhile oligarch patron.
    That he was at the time being paid a steady baseline salary by Steele et al was of course not admitted, any more than the possibility that the private security companies for whom he worked were actually in greater or lesser extent ‘fronts’, as Goldfarb’s grandfather might have said: with one hell of a lot of money to pay out to those who served the ‘agendas’ of those funding them.
    The notion that Litvinenko’s supposed impecuniousness explains anything is patently, the product of the kind of ‘information operations’ – which always relied upon a large element of ‘kitsch’ – in which people like Goldbarb’s grandfather specialised, and in which Steele and his like have been all too happy to join them.
    This was part of a ‘narrative’ in which Steele, Goldfarb and those who swallowed their disinformation in the ‘MSM’, collaborated. In shaping this, Litvinenko worked with the former KGB operative Shvets (the name, my Galician friends have told me, means ‘tailor’ in Ukrainian) and the former FBI operative Levinson – neither of whom, of course, had any involvement with Western intelligence agencies – in unearthing devastating information about the links of a figure close to Putin to organised crime.
    The figure in question then, supposedly, commissioned Lugovoi and Kovtun to put polonium in Litvinenko’s tea.
    To see who the figures involved the Mangold programme really were, and discover some linkages worth investigating, all one needs to do are a few basic Google checks, such as ‘Yuri Shvets Melnichenko’, ‘Robert Levinson CIA’, ‘Robert Levinson Mogilevich’, ‘Trump Mogilevich’, ‘Mangold Mogilevich’, ‘Mangold anthrax’, ‘Mangold David Kelly’, ‘Mueller Comey anthrax’.
    As to the targets of the ‘dossiers’ produced by Litvinenko, Shvets and al, they were, unsurprisingly, those of Putin’s associates who had been put in charge when major industries of Russia were wrested out of the control of Berezovsky and Khodorkovsky: Viktor Ivanov and Igor Sechin.
    How people in MI6 were stupid enough to get involved in a kind of ‘bare knuckles fight’ between Putin and his ‘siloviki’ associates, and the oligarchs who would not accept the – actually very attractive – terms he offered them – has long baffled me.
    When however it was revealed that Christopher Steele was actually a superannuated Cambridge University students’ union politician, much fell into place. But, to explain these people, and the utter contempt which not just Steele, but Sir Alex Younger, Sir Richard Dearlove, and Sir John Scarlett inspire in me, is difficult.

  22. FB Ali says:

    As an interested observer, I much prefer the versions of Patrick Armstrong, Publius Tacitus, David Habakkuk, et al.
    I’m afraid you seem to have got a rather morbid fascination with this whole “Russia” thing, and keep plugging it all the time. No one is disputing the fact that all intelligence services try to discover information about other countries. And, where they can, influence their policies.
    Why not just leave it at that instead of going on insisting that we have to accept your version of what happened at the time of the US election? Take a break!

  23. turcopolier says:

    FB Ali
    Although generally supportive of your comments to TTG, I must say that before 9/11 the only US intelligence service that sought to influence other governments was the CIA and they were an exception because of the unfortunate inclusion of covert action among their statutory missions. pl

  24. We can only hope, in our naive ways, that as the swamp is drained, a lot of connections will be revealed, BAB-Steele-Berezovskiy-Fusion GPS or Ukraine-Russia hacking. A very great deal of corruption — far beyond normal limits in fact.
    And maybe the swamp is being drained — certainly a lot of Trump’s enemies have taken big hits in the last 5-6 weeks. For your reading pleasure:

  25. GeneO says:

    PA –
    I do not recall that the Lithuanian head of state in 1991, Professor Landsbergis, or his regime were particularly nasty. Perhaps they turned nasty after more than 700 civilian casualties in Vilnius in January 91; or the attack on their unarmed border guards by Soviet SWAT units in July?
    I am sure there were strong anti-Polish and anti-Russian opinions by Joe Sixpack on the street at the time. But I do not remember any reports of snipers at that time.

  26. ex-PFC Chuck says:

    I’ve read several books about the Walker-Bush clan and I believe it was in Russ Baker’s Family of Secrets: The Bush Dynasty, America’s Invisible Government, and the Hidden Histosry of the Last Fifty Years that the author asserted there were tantalizing threads of evidence suggesting that George H. W.Bush was a CIA asset from the time he founded Zapata Petroleum in west Texas shortly after graduating from Yale after the War. Baker also quoted a man whose name I don’t now recall who was the head of the CIA’s French equivalent for nearly 20 years as saying that, of all the DCIs he had dealt with during that time, GHWB was the most competent and professional. FWIW.

  27. You miss Patrick’s second point: that no one with any rationality would have given Trump the likelihood of both running and winning.
    This is the basic problem with ALL of Russiagate: None of it makes any sense before the fact of Trump 1) running, 2) getting the nomination against all odds, and 3) against all odds. A Priori, the whole thing is nonsensical.
    That Russia might have been interested in Trump for other reasons, as a rich, more or less influential, American, might be plausible. The rest is not.
    Still less all this nonsense about Russia TRYING to “meddle in the election”, for which there is ZERO plausible evidence even without the alleged “Trump collusion.”
    The whole thing reduces to hand-waving about “Russian information warfare” for which there is also zero evidence, both of its tangible existence and its alleged effect.

  28. FourthAndLong says:

    Patrick: rationally speaking, I hardly agree with anything you say above.
    Nonetheless, we are brothers 🙂

  29. Alexander Mercouris analyzes the events at the UN over the Syria chemical weapons investigation. Apparently a lot went on behind the scenes that the MSM didn’t cover because they were too busy covering Nikki Haley’s anti-Russia ranting.
    Russia’s Nebenzia outsmarts Nikki Haley in UN Security Council debate on report into Khan Sheikhoun attack

  30. Related to the latest “BOMBSHELL” that Trump, Jr. was in touch with Wikileaks, Caitlin Johnstone reveals deliberate lying by The Atlantic.
    ‘The Atlantic’ Commits Malpractice, Selectively Edits To Smear WikiLeaks

  31. I’ll be polite.
    The relevance of this is what? Kuban, Terek and Don Cossacks are supposed to really be Ukrainians? Is that what you’re are trying to say? Did you actually watch the videos? The kid with the Rossiya shoulder patch? the Don Cossack trousers? The Russian Imperial cap badge? What?

  32. charly says:

    Trump has always been rich and because of that influential. Both are enough reason to have some material. Especially when the act was claimed to have happened in a very expensive hotel room which i wouldn’t be surprised if it was already wired up for taping.

  33. iowa steve says:

    The dem party establishment is already blaming Frankengate on Russian bots. I won’t bother to link to the site, but it’s the exemplar of all such things aka as dailykos.

  34. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Were they knights by birth or we so created recently?

  35. different clue says:

    I have heard ( but have no way to know) that the CNN people get overseas is something called CNN International or maybe International CNN. It is supposed to be much news-denser and higher quality than CNN America. According to what I read about this, CNN America is run as an information deprivation-and-prevention media outlet for the audience here.

  36. Lyttenburgh says:

    Once again – thanks for report, Mr. Armstrong! Honestly – I’ve missed this particular “street art performance” by Mishiko, cuz I kinda lost interest in this “illegitimate” (i.e. not supported by the StateDept) quazi-Maidan.
    As for the observations made by several users both here:
    “Russia is so convenient that if it did not exist, it would have to be invented. Russia allows the establishment to instantly explain away any failures, no evidence or plausible chain of causation required. It’s like a “get out of jail free!” card…”
    And elsewhere, i.e in Tacitus recent blogpost which ends with: “[T]he American public are being conditioned to see Russia as the reincarnated Soviet Bear intent on devouring the peaceful democracies”.
    Don’t you see the connection here? Let me show something:
    Each of this example of the superior Western material culture is separated from the next one by more than 50 years. The thing is – “Russian bear intent on devouring the peaceful democracies” (c) was as real in each of this time periods as now. I.e. – not much. Still – it doesn’t matter. It’s high time for the Westerners to understand, that when their politicians talk about “existential Russian threat”, about “aggressive, resurgent Russia” and “Putin’s undermining of the World Order”, what they are actually saying is: “Only weak, dismembered, or completely annihilated Russia will suffice. We are not interested in brining the “democracy” here. Only in perpetuating of the World Order with us in charge”.
    All else is either naivety or demagoguery. The West never had problem with Czarist (by jingo!) or Bolshevik or “Putin’s” Russia – it’d always had a problem with Russia which is not weak.

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