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RUSSIA AND COVID. Latest numbers: total cases 870K; total deaths 14,606; tests per 1 million 203K. Russia has done 29.7 million tests (third after China and USA); among countries with populations over 10M it's second in tests per million and of those over 100M first. The Health Minister says mass vaccinations will begin by October. Has Russia really won the vaccine race? this researcher believes so and gives his explanation.

KHABAROVSK. Protests continue (video of Sunday's). A lot of things going on: Furgal was popular, his replacement, while from the LDPR, is unknown in the area, Khabarovsk feels ignored (Moscow is only 700kms closer than Vancouver), outside activists coming in, corruption. Moscow has handled it badly.

RUSSIA INC. Despite the usual predictions from the usual sources, Russia Inc is healthy: big FOREX kitty; low debts. And, furthermore, it's about the closest thing to an autarky that exists today. Entertaining argument that it can only get better in the rest of the year. It's just been suggested that there may be even more money available in a couple of oil and gas companies.

PUTINOLOGY. Sarkozy and Bill Clinton agree: he always keeps his word. I agree after years of observation: he says what he means and means what he says.

CHURCH. Some of the Church's officials live very well indeed. An Abbess was requested to sell her Mercedes. This is drawing some attention. The Patriarch says such speculations "are designed to prevent the spread of God’s word". Which is not an entirely satisfactory response. In the Yeltsin days the ROC was given a piece of the action of certain imports (tobacco for one) so as to fund itself. That seems to have stopped and revenue today comes from the state, sale of articles for church use and some business entities. Scandals come up from time to time and are forgotten as this one probably will be too. The wealth of religious organisations is not, of course, just an issue with the ROC.

FOREIGN CONNECTIONS. A Constitutional amendment prohibits certain officials from having foreign

citizenship or residency permits. A KPRF Deputy says 39 Deputies from the pedestal party have; the Speaker has promised to look into it. Some one else has published a list of officials with a second passport. Quite a few; something to watch: presumably they formally renounce these things or are fired.

MOON. The Roscosmos head says that Russia and China are likely to build a Moon research base. Another sign neither sees Washington as reliable. I note Beijing is becoming blunter: a "bully" "undermining international law and order" "reckless provocation" "conspiracy theories".

MILITARY. Airborne exercise video and a reminder that they're the only one that routinely drops AFVs. Eastern Military District. Mediterranean. Sea of Japan. Black Sea. Baltic. Practice and messages.

BEIRUT DISASTER. First Russian aid arrived yesterday, more coming today.

AMERICA-HYSTERICA. Source of The Dossier finally revealed – unimpressive, to put it mildly. Interesting link with Fiona Hill and Brookings. Even the CIA thought it was junk but the FBI insisted. Comey "went rogue". (Are we ever going to get to the arrest and handcuff phase of this so that even WaPo and NYT readers can learn what happened?)

DOUMA. The Douma fake CW attack, the FUKUS attack, leaks from the OPCW and its cover-up finally hit the MSM thanks to Aaron Maté and The Nation. Neither fake attack nor coverup news to my readers.

BELARUS. Pretty mystifying. The Russians-sent-to-destabilise story is absurd (vide.) I know that Lukashenka has been playing Russia and the West, I see signs of a "colour revolution" (colours. Slogans). I've heard that the arrested Russians were on their way to be security guards for a facility in Libya. Now Lukashenka says US citizens have been arrested and that Putin's his "elder brother". It's smelling to me like a Western regime change operation that hasn't been very well prepared. I would expect Lukashenka to prevail and suggest he check his immediate entourage.

GERMANY-USA. Little by little the split grows. Some recent German polls show good support for American troop reduction. And good support for reducing dependence on the USA and improving relations with Russia.

FREUDIAN SLIP. "So we can all deter Russia and avoid peace in Europe".

NORDSTREAM. Washington huffs and puffs, last opposition from Copenhagen over.

PROBLEMS WITH THE NARRATIVE. Sloppy, sloppy: the latest UK Russian hacker story debunks itself: documents reported in UK media two days before "Russian hackers" "hacked" them!

© Patrick Armstrong Analysis, Canada Russia Observer

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30 Responses to RUSSIAN FEDERATION SITREP 6 AUGUST 2020 By Patrick Armstrong

  1. fanto says:

    The book “Russia im Zangengriff” by Peter Scholl-Latour, came out in 2006. He describes the Far East of Russia, in detail, the cities of Magadan, Wladiovostok,Chabarovsk and he is prescient in the development of separatist tendencies. PSL has been prescient in many other situations, – he predicted (also in 2006) that the war in Afghanistan is not winnable by USA. Good observers are rare and not well tolerated by political and media “elites” .
    Thanks Mr Armstrong for good informations.

  2. Jim says:

    Secretary of Defense Mark Esper: “So we can all deter Russia and avoid peace in Europe”.
    Thank you Patrick Armstrong.

  3. Barbara Ann says:

    The Russians-sent-to-destabilize Belarus story is clearly BS. But there seems to be real support for Lukashenko’s opposition; led by the “reluctant”, but rather photogenic Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya. Tonight her supporters have apparently crashed a Lukashenko rally (their own having been banned) and effectively taken it over.
    Sunday’s election result is a foregone conclusion, of course, but one has to wonder what might follow. Whatever happens I don’t expect Russia to be caught napping again.

  4. Barbara Ann. My gut reaction, having seen so many of these things, is to assume fake from the start.
    But Luka has been around for a long time which is never a good idea. Although, truth to be told, he hasn’t done so badly, has he? But all these guys have to think about succession.
    My guess is that Nazarbayev’s precedent will be common (off the front stage, but still in the back). Ukraine has been a terrible example and the Baltics are no great shakes either.

  5. Deap says:

    Not sure if I can get excited about a Russian corona “vaccine” showing 38 people from ages 18-60 got “milder symptoms”. Since that is what they do already under most situations. Trust, but verify.

  6. Fred says:

    Interesting that the ROC accounts for 10% of the cigarette imports into Russia. The other scandals brought back memories of Banco Ambrosiano from early 80s.
    NATO: Perhaps we should invite Russia to join, that way they’ll be pledging “to safeguard the freedom, common heritage and civilisation of their peoples, founded on the principles of democracy, individual liberty and the rule of law.” and that bit in article 4 about territorial integrity.

  7. Yeah, Right says:

    Here in Australia we have a similar prohibition on dual citizens sitting in our Federal Parliament. One idiot politician sought to discredit an opposition figure by pointing out that their renunciation of their previous citizenship was procedurally null and void.
    I forget the details, but the argument was pretty arcane.
    What the idiot politician didn’t do was to run that same yardstick over fellow members of his own party, because if he had then he would have realized they’d fall like nine-pins.
    Hilarity ensured, much to the disgust of a thoroughly unimpressed public. The entire exercise simply convinced everyone that politics in Australia was a Clown Car.

  8. turcopolier says:

    Yeah, right
    No prohibition on multi-citizenship for congressional seats here. do you think Ilhan Omar is not still a Somali citizen?

  9. Yeah, Right says:

    Am I right in thinking that there was a time when nobody in the USA could be a dual-citizen? Office-holder or private citizen alike?

  10. Deap says:

    Barry Soetoro appeared to be both an Indonesian and a US citizen, beyond being a under-age minor – and perhaps he traded his fortunes as an Indonesian foreign student when enrolled at his highly selective Ivy League colleges – Columbia and Harvard, after his self-admitted coked-out gap summer leaving Occidental College in California. A true American success story.
    But that is only a street rumor- Barry refused access to his college records. So yes, it appears there is no penalty having a dual citizenship in the US.

  11. Deap says:

    US elected representative take the following oath of office, designed to weed out traitors so it does require subordinating any other or prior citizenship loyalties
    ……..” The oath used today has not changed since 1966 and is prescribed in Title 5, Section 3331 of the United States Code. It reads:
    “I, AB, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion, and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”

  12. Lytenburgh says:

    “Moscow has handled it badly.”
    No, actually, Moscow handled it top notch. Protests are waaaaay down in numbers, external politisation and support by fringe/outsiders did everything to turn away normal people. Furgal being “popular”? Check out funerals of mafia Dons in Sicily or Souther Italy. A lot of people attend them and sometimes “pillars of community” serve as the pallbearers. Doesn’t make the “passengers” inside the coffins less criminal, though. Same is with Furgal.
    >”The book “Russia im Zangengriff” by Peter Scholl-Latour, came out in 2006. He describes the Far East of Russia, in detail, the cities of Magadan, Wladiovostok,Chabarovsk and he is prescient in the development of separatist tendencies.”
    BS. Far East is the most ethnically Russian part of Russia beyond the Urals. It honestly gets a bit silly reading commentary after commentary after commentary about how the Russian Far East is going to somehow “give Putin trouble” in the future because it’s going to try to align itself with the SE Asia and/or China or whatever.
    The Russian Far East not only is the most ethnically Russian of all Russian regions, it’s also a region that views itself as quintessentially Russian and in no way, shape or form separate from the rest of Russia. Moreover, the large cities are prosperous enough from all the resource trade to not think that the current times are somehow lean or bad, and the rest of the region is extremely sparsely populated to the point of not being much more than just wilderness. Finally, the Russian Far East isn’t exactly a trade hub or a cosmopolitan region of any sort, in terms of its contact with China (and other countries – e.g. the West), and whatever cross-cultural contact happens as a result of the mostly anemic trade (in goods) between the Far East and China is probably going to need another several centuries at least to make a noticeable impact on the local culture.
    Tl;dr: Russian Far East won’t be leaving Russia anytime soon any more than the Northern England will be leaving Britain.

  13. Deap says:

    Recent visits in Vladivostok and Sakhalin Peninsula – both appeared very much on the move. Gorgeous new opera house with an outstanding festival season in Vladivostok, (looked even worth a return visit) and the one Korsakov port, Sakhalin city we visited was undergoing a pretty lavish city improvements – parks, roads, landscaping, shopping malls – when I asked what was the economic underpinnings that allowed so much recent improvements, they said petroleum.
    Years ago I two very interesting visits to Khabarovsk – one year right before the end of the Soviet era and one year right after – many immediate contrasts – Japan had moved in first – new hotels for Japanese businessmen and a sparkling new airport. The biggest change was seeing so many lovely, slender and welcoming young people as the new face of Russia, replacing the sturdy, lumpen and sullen former pass-stamping Soviet bureaucrats. We all remarked this was the first time we ever heard “Welcome to Russia” upon arrival ,and said with a smile.
    Small, but telling things. Not quite so fresh and welcoming on this latest visit last year, but they did seem much ore settled into their new normal. In Russia Far East. Re-visits to St Petersburg, they have moved beyond welcoming into cynical and exploitive. However, one did get the sense in Russia Far East – they felt they were beyond the reach of Moscow’s controlling hand. Free speech and full candor was alive and well among those we met. Yet still wedded to the security of a beneficent state.

  14. Mike46 says:

    Colonel Lang wrote: “do you think Ilhan Omar is not still a Somali citizen?”
    If she didn’t renounce her Somali citizenship, which as you said she isn’t required to do under our laws. then I think she may have lost it under Somali law.
    Law No. 28 of 22 December 1962 – Somali Citizenship
    Article 2. Acquisition of Citizenship by Operation of Law
    Any person:
    a) whose father is a Somali citizen;
    b) who is a Somali residing in the territory of the Somali Republic or abroad and declares to be willing to renounce any status as citizen or subject of a foreign country shall be a Somali Citizen by operation of law.

  15. turcopolier says:

    sounds pretty ambiguous to me.

  16. Fred says:

    If I recall correctly from public accounts, when Ilhan Omar first burst onto the public stage her family came her because they were on the losing side in one of the then ongoing power struggles in Somalia. She might be an intellegence risk due to family ties/loyalties, but I doubt she’s heading back any time soon.

  17. ex PFC Chuck says:

    Esper’s slip reminds me of Mayor Daley during the 1968 Democratic convention: “The police are not here to create disorder; they’re here to preserve disorder.”

  18. blum says:

    Northstream II, you may not be aware of the latest threat, or warning if you prefer.
    Check the letter Senators Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton and Ron Johnson sent to the management of the German Baltic Sea Port Sassnitz too.

  19. Mike46 says:

    Fred: “She might be an intellegence risk due to family ties/loyalties, but I doubt she’s heading back any time soon.”
    What are you suggesting?

  20. Mike46 says:

    “Northstream II, you may not be aware of the latest threat, or warning if you prefer.”
    Who are the real traitors here? Is it Omar or is it Cruz, Cotton and Johnson who want to aid and abet the wholesale rape of our natural resources (NG) by shipping it out of our land and sending it all over the world as (LNG) to enrich themselves and their gas industry cronies?

  21. Fred says:

    I’m suggesting that regardless of her repeated condemnations of America and her culture she isn’t returing to her birthplace.
    “the wholesale rape of our natural resources”
    That whole diatribe is rather humorous. Was it “rape lite” when LNG exports expanded under Obama? How dare Curz, Cotton and Johnson suggest we keep doing what Barack was doing!?

  22. Mike46 says:

    Fred: I’m not letting Obama off the hook. I was opposed to it then and still oppose it.

  23. Christian J. Chuba says:

    Total deaths per million: 100 vs 500 for the U.S.
    One thing I noticed about Russia’s treatment regiment is that they are heavily into anti-virals. They first started using Favipiravir, which was approved in Japan on 2016 to fight Influenza and became generic in 2019. They then developed and approved Avifavir on 6/11, and now coronavir on 7/9.
    The only anti-viral we use is Remdesivir which was developed for hepatitis-C in 2009 but never approved. Korea uses other anti-virals.
    I just don’t get the impression we bother looking at other countries unless they are European countries we like.

  24. J says:

    I find it curious the ‘silence’ from brash NATO when Moscow point blank said that ‘any’ missile launch against Russia will be considered as a NUCLEAR attack on Russia and will be responded in kind.
    That statement by Russian MOD basically took all the air out of NATO’s bellacosity.

  25. J says:

    Russian intelligence is keeping a close eye on Belarus AND western plans regarding it. Russian SVR is working with Belarus Special Services according to Russian SVR Director Sergei Naryshkin comments in the press last Wednesday.

  26. turcopolier says:

    Epistemological question – How do you know all that business about the SVR in Belarus? What is your source for that?

  27. J says:

    The SVR director’s comments regarding SVR cooperation with Belarus Special Services were directed to the Russian media in general on Sept. 2nd, and are cited in TASS and in other medias.
    Sergei Naryshkin went on to state that the SVR is keeping in focus everything happening on the Western side to include ideas AND plans being made and informing their colleagues. This IMHO shows they have personnel inside some of the NATO membership’s intelligence apparatuses that are feeding their intelligence leads back to Moscow.

  28. J says:

    NATO member’s intelligence apparatuses need to pull their heads out of their backsides and practice strict OPSEC, and stop trying to play james bond. Ukraine’s intelligence among others appears to be a cheesecloth as far as protecting their and NATO state secrets. NATO needs to wake up and start acting like professionals. And of course this is just my personal opine regarding it.

  29. turcopolier says:

    Where are the links for sources for these assumptions?

  30. john says:

    Wow Informative….

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