Trip lasted only 48 hours
7:01 AM, NOV 24, 2014 • BY JERYL BIER
Vice President Joe Biden just returned Sunday from a three-nation trip that concluded with a 48 hour visit to Turkey. The vice president, his wife, and his entourage arrived in Turkey via Ukraine Friday evening around 7:30 local time for meetings with President Erdogan and other government officials. Biden departed for Washington, D.C. Sunday after meeting with Patriarch Bartholomew of the Eastern Orthodox Church. The stay in Turkey alone racked up a hotel bill of approximately $624,734.
The notice of the hotel contract was posted online uncharacteristically quickly, appearing on the very day of Biden’s departure from Turkey. The documents called for 200 rooms and one large conference room at the Hilton Harbiye in Istanbul:
Numerous other hotels were considered but not deemed suitable due to various reasons including lack of sufficient rooms, distance from planned events, and even ongoing renovations at one facility.
Documents related to lodging for the the Moroccan and Ukrainian legs of Biden’s trip have not yet been posted.
Poroshenko is bombing people to get rid of them
Ukraine’s President, Petro Poroshenko, in an Odessa TV address to the nation, on November 13th, said:
“We will have our jobs. They will not. We will have our pensions. They will not. We will have care for children, for people, and retirees. They will not. Our children will go to schools and kindergartens. Theirs will hole up in basements [from our bombs]. Because they are not able to do anything. This is exactly how we will win this war! [I.e., we will starve and terrorize them into submission.]”
His corrupt government was installed by the United States of America, in a violent coup this past February, under the cover of “Maidan” demonstrations against the previous corrupt leader of Ukraine. U.S. President Barack Obama wants U.S. oil companies to be able to frack in Ukraine, and wants to place nuclear missiles there, against next-door Russia, but the previous Ukrainian ruler wouldn’t go along with those goals. So, Obama overthrew him and now wants to get rid also of the people who had voted for him. That’s why the successor President, Poroshenko, is bombing these people: to get rid of them.
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.
“I have only one thing to say to you: you need to get out of Ukraine.”
by ZERO HEDGE | NOVEMBER 16, 2014
Following last week’s (humiliating for the US) APEC meeting in Beijing, in which the BRIC nations clearly distanced themselves from the “developed world” and the topic of the “Russian invasion of Ukraine” was largely missing as it is clearly not in the interest of the Pacific nations to warmonger when the two key nations, Russia and China are obviously not complying with the western media ‘straight to populism‘ narrative, it was time for another major world summit, this time in the quite “western” Brisbane, Australia.
It was here that the G-7 part of the G-20 nations seized the opportunity to quickly pivot against Moscow and remind Europe that the reason why Europe is in a triple-dip recession (if one removes the GDP “boost” from hookers and blow) is because of Russia’s “take over” of east Ukraine, ignoring the reality that it was the US State Department’s Victoria Nuland that incited the Kiev coup and the west that imposed the “costly” sanctions on Russia which have hurt Germany and Europe just as badly. This was all largely lost on the local, as outside the summit, Ukrainian Australians staged an anti-Putin protest, wearing headbands reading “Putin, Killer”.
It was a full court press from the start: as the NYT reports, “at a speech at a university in Brisbane, Mr. Obama called Russia’s aggression against Ukraine a “threat to the world, as we saw in the appalling shootdown of MH-17, a tragedy that took so many innocent lives, among them your fellow citizens,” a reference to the Australian citizens and residents who were killed when Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 went down in eastern Ukraine.
“As your ally and friend, America shares the grief of these Australian families, and we share the determination of your nation for justice and accountability,” Mr. Obama said.”
This charade was set to continue Sunday, when leaders from the European Union planned to meet with Mr. Obama to discuss Ukraine, among other issues, said Herman Van Rompuy, the president of the European Council. He said the European Union was committed to finding a political solution to the crisis.
“We will continue to use all the diplomatic tools, including sanctions, at our disposal,” he said.
Indeed, as Reuters adds “Western leaders warned Vladimir Putin at a G20 summit on Saturday that he risked more economic sanctions if he failed to end Russian backing for separatist rebels in Ukraine.”
But perhaps the best confirmation that all the G-20 meeting was nothing but a giant populist photo-op comes from Bloomberg which reports that “Russian President Vladimir Putin got a blunt message when he approached Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper for a handshake at today’s Group of 20 summit in Brisbane, Australia.
“I guess I’ll shake your hand but I have only one thing to say to you: you need to get out of Ukraine,” Harper told Putin, the prime minister’s spokesman Jason MacDonald said in an e-mail.
Putin’s response to the comment wasn’t positive, MacDonald said, without elaborating. Putin and Harper talked briefly, according to Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov.
“Indeed Harper told Putin that Russia should leave Ukraine,” Peskov said by phone today in Brisbane. “Putin told him that this is impossible because they are not there.”
Asked about the tone of the meeting between the two leaders, Peskov said “it was within the bounds of decency.”
Say no more.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, walks past Canadian Prime Minister
Stephen Harper, left, during a welcoming ceremony at the G-20 summit in Brisbane.
Yet at the end of the day, captioned photo-op or not, one wonders how much of all the front-page drama is even remotely real when every single time the west goes on the “offensive” against Putin with “costs” just to have a convenient scapegoat for Europe’s ongoing depression, one hears in the back of one head the following exchange:
Obama: “This is my last election. After my election I have more flexibility.”
Medvedev: “I understand. I will transmit this information to Vladimir”
Skeptics question legitimacy of evidence
by PAUL JOSEPH WATSON | NOVEMBER 14, 2014
A television news channel in Russia has released an image of what it claims shows a Ukrainian fighter jet shooting a missile towards Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.
The satellite image, which is also being circulated by the Russian Union of Engineers, emerged just hours before world leaders are set to confront Russian President Vladimir Putin on the fate of MH17 at the G20 summit in Brisbane.
The image was reportedly obtained from a US or British satellite, the TV station claimed.
However, skeptics soon took to Twitter to claim that the image showed a geographical area 50km away from where MH17 was shot down.
The blame game over who was responsible for the downing of the airliner has raged for almost four months, with Kiev and its western allies claiming Russian-backed rebels were responsible for the incident, while Moscow has repeatedly pointed to evidence of Ukrainian fighter jets having been in the vicinity to claim that Kiev shot down the plane.
The Ukrainian government previously presented what it claimed was proof that Russian-backed rebels used a ground-based missile system to down the airliner, but the image later turned out to have been hastily cropped from a popular video game.
Watch the video above to see the satellite image.
Oil giant BP (British Petroleum) has suffered a fall in profits from July to September amid lower oil prices and the decreasing value of the ruble.
Europe’s third-largest company said it made $3bn (£1.86bn) in the third quarter, down from $3.7bn (£2.29bn) in the same period last year – a fall of 21 percent.
BP has invested heavily in Russia and owns a nearly 20 percent stake in Rosneft, the Russian state-run oil company. It is now feeling the impact of Western economic sanctions on Russia over the Ukraine crisis.
The company’s net income from the Rosneft stake dropped considerably – down to $110m from $808m in the same period last year.
BP said the depreciation of the ruble against the dollar was the reason for the drop in profits. Lower Urals oil prices also hurt profits, the London-based company said in a statement.
Crude oil prices dropped over the past four months by 25 percent to a four-year low of around $85 a barrel, due to slowing global demand, especially in China, and ample supplies.
However, it said the latest sanctions imposed on Russia in July “have had no material adverse impact on BP.”
British energy giant BP CEO Bob Dudley (AFP hoto / Vasily Maximov)British energy giant BP CEO Bob Dudley (AFP hoto / Vasily Maximov)
In turn, BP’s underlying oil and gas production, which excludes Russia, rose 4.1 percent.
Despite the drop in oil prices and profits, BP raised its dividend to 10 cents per share.
BP’s chief executive, Bob Dudley, remains positive: “Growing underlying production of oil and gas and a good downstream [refining oil] performance generated strong cash flow in the third quarter, despite lower oil prices. This keeps us well on track to hit our targets for 2014,” he said in a statement.
Rosneft delayed the publication of its own third quarter profit results without giving an explanation.
During the third quarter, BP paid out $314 million over the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion and the massive oil spillage that followed in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. BP has now paid out $20 billion in charges for the disaster.
Ukraine is tantamount to allowing a Nazi state emerge in the heart of Europe
by ALEXANDER DONETSKY | STRATEGIC CULTURE FOUNDATION | OCTOBER 27, 2014
If one compares the Germany of the 1920-1930s and the Ukraine of today – the similarity is striking.
The situation in the country allows a political party seen as a marginal one by the majority of population ride the wave of discontent to become a major political actor. It comes to power and establishes a dictatorship. Formally President von Hindenburg led the country, but the members of the National Socialist German Workers Party held all key government positions. Germany quickly turned into a totalitarian state. The same thing is taking place in Ukraine. Top government officials connive at advocates of Nazi ideology who grab all key positions. Only yesterday the Ukrainian Nazi were viewed as a marginal force and today they spread their views to make the ideology of national socialism permeate all aspects of public life.
* * *
Social nationalism is another name for the ideology of Ukrainian integral nationalism that emerged in the 1920-1940s. According to its founders, the ideology is a compilation of German Nazism and Italian fascism adapted to the Ukrainian realities. The Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) was the driving force spreading this ideology around. Stepan Bandera, one of the organization’s leaders, got a prison sentence in Poland for committing a terrorist act. He was freed by Hitler’s occupational force and recruited by Abwehr. Bandera went around by the nickname of Grey. Now the man is the most revered hero of the new Kiev regime. Eugene Konovalets (alias Consul), the first leader of OUN, and his successor Andrei Melnyk (Consul-2) also worked for Abwehr.
The revival of fascism in Ukraine started in the late 1980s. Underground student circles supported by Canada and US-based emigrants, former OUN fighters, sprang up in Lviv. As Ukraine became an independent state many groups emerged to announce themselves as ideological successors to the OUN’s Bandera group: UNA-UNSO (the Ukrainian National Assembly – Ukrainian People’s Self-Defense), the Congress of Ukrainian Nationalists, the Patriot of Ukraine, the Social-Nationalist Party (in 2005 renamed the All-Ukrainian Union Svoboda), the Social-National Party of Ukraine (SNPU), the Social-National Assembly of Ukraine (S.N.A.), the Stepan Bandera All-Ukrainian Organization ″Trizub″, the All-Ukrainian organization Sich etc. They all supported the idea of pure race totalitarian state and tough nationalist dictatorship ruled by the “leader of the nation”.
In the late 1920s-early 1930s German newspaper Welt am Abend warned about the possibility of Hitlerites coming to power. It wrote that fascist combat units formally got separated from the party to go underground and act as sports unions, sharp shooters clubs, skittles clubs and singing groups. The same thing took place in Ukraine in 1990-2010. The UNA-UNSO, Trizub and Svoboda monopolized all the paintball, shooting and martial arts clubs and associations of football fans and scouts. They spread their ideology among senior school-goers and students. The nationalist propaganda was especially aggressive in the universities of Lviv, Kiev, Kharkov where students responded en mass to the calls for violent overthrow of government and unleashing a nationalist revolution in Ukraine.
It had been known many months before the Maidan events that nationalists had been preparing a coup. In October 2012 one of Svoboda leaders made a speech at the meeting in honor of UPA calling on Neo-Nazi to foster military spirit and hone combat skills to fight the occupation force. Her colleague Yuri Mikhalchishin made precise that it was necessary to prepare for urban warfare and “make the enemies of Ukrainian nation eat asphalt”, meaning first of all Russians and Jews. A year later the Trizub leadership said at the press-conference that the plans existed to take power of the whole country and eliminate the enemies of the nation. The UNSO and the Patriot of Ukraine formally separated from Svoboda, that provided a training base for the party members, and started to run their own courses to master the combat, rappel assault and explosives handling skills, as well as tactics to capture buildings. The Pamyatka (Instruction) that was published in the third edition of Banderovets newspaper (2010) instructed everyone to learn martial arts, master military endurance sports, shooting and knife fight skills. The same newspaper explained what the training was required to seize power soon. The groups mentioned above, as well as outright racists and anti-Semitists, like “fighters for the purity of white race” from White Hammer, became the main fighting force during the coup that took place in Kiev in February 2014. Like in the case of German SA, the groups’ militants formed units called “hundreds of Maidan self-defense”. The fascist Germany used the “Sieg Heil!” greeting as a way of saluting. The activists of Maidan-2014 movement greeted each other with words “Long Live Free Ukraine!” to be answered with “Long Live Heroes!” in response, the very same way it is practiced by Bandera followers. As time went by this semi-official All-Ukrainian greeting became the official way to hail each other in the Ukrainian armed forces. They salute with right hand – a well-known gesture. The OUN red-black flag became the second semi-official flag of Ukraine that inherited the Nazi symbols – blood and soil.
* * *
Coming to power Arseniy Yatsenyuk, Alexander Turchinov and Petro Poroshenko could not but express gratitude to neo-Nazi for the support. Valentin Nalivaichenko has close links to Trizub, the group which served as a basis for Pravy Sector (a Ukrainian nationalist political party). He was appointed the head of Ukrainian Security Service. Andriy Parubiy is the founder of the Patriot of Ukraine and Social-Nationalist Party. He got the position of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council. Igor Smeshko, a retired Colonel-General (three stars), is the founder of Sich which is part of Social-National Assembly of Ukraine. Some time ago he was appointed presidential advisor and chairman of the presidential committee for intelligence. Sergey Kwit banned the use of Russian language on the territory of Kiev Mohyla Academy that he headed at the time. Now he became the Minister of Education. Ihor Shvaika and Andrey Mohnik, the Svoboda political party members, now head, accordingly, the ministries of agriculture and ecology and natural resources. There are many other people who hold less important positions to instill the ideological mixture of Italian fascism and German Nazism into all spheres of life from economy to military training, from art and TV to school education.
On October 6, Odessa-based Timer published the text of school dictation for Ukrainian language learners. Here is a fragment, that goes as, “We – the children of Ukraine and she is our mother. Mothers, as is known, are not chosen. Honest people. Born Ukrainians, the people of Little Russia refuse to recognize their native mother and go to stepmother to serve her as if she were the one to give them birth…These creatures only look like humans being scum of the earth in reality. They are only half humans even if they have higher education and academic degrees. Since a long time ago they deserve to be behind bars in Ukrainian jails. The prisons shed tears willing to accommodate their “clients”. Don’t cry, prisons, your time will come, Ukrainophobes will be behind bars and not as your guests. They will come to stay forever. And then the Ukrainian society will get rid of this trash, this unbearable filth and shame”.
Yuri Mikhalchishin is appointed deputy head of the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) responsible for analysis and ideological work. Since 2012 Mikhalchishin is a member of Ukrainian parliament and one of leading ideologists of Nazi Svoboda party. He played a pivotal role in making public the speeches of Goebbels to be read in Ukraine now. He believes that the social nationalist revolution is ahead to change the world and “only the people with new mindset and pattern of action can create the new life as they are not burdened by the past”.
Valentin Nalivaichenko, the head of Ukrainian counterintelligence, has been a sponsor of terrorist organization Trizub for a few years being involved in the combat training of its members. With him at the helm one can imagine what kind of ideological work his deputy Yuri Mikhalchishin will do!
Like Gestapo in the fascist Germany the Ukrainian Security Service is not under the jurisdiction of administrative courts. To oppose its activities one cannot appeal to justice like in the case of other state bodies. The same way as Gestapo the service enjoys the right of preventive arrest without a court decision. Like the subordinates of Heinrich Himmler in the 1930s-1940s the Ukrainian Security Service operatives supervise the implementation of the slave labor program called “public works”. The agency led by Nalivaichenko is notorious for cruel tortures and beatings. The fact is proven by ample evidence provided by the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s republics self-defence forces servicemen, as well as civilians accused of separatism. The Ukrainian counter-intelligence operatives practice assassinations of the government’s political opponents. For instance Alexander Samoilov, the pro-rector of Kharkiv International Slavic University, was detained by Ukrainian Security Service in Kharkiv together with some other “separatists”.
Turning a blind eye on the similarities between the Germany of Hitler and the contemporary Ukraine is tantamount to allowing a Nazi state emerge in the heart of Europe. The state that poisons their people by inculcating the ideology of the ethnic exclusiveness, propagates the idea of physical extermination of dissidents and feeds the dreams of global domination exercised by militarized Ukraine going nuclear. It’s not an exaggeration: it’s enough to read the program of any organization mentioned in the article to see that the affirmation is true.