Relentless Putin Bashing
by Stephen Lendman
Washington and its echo chamber media attack Putin for asserting Russian sovereign independence and opposing America’s imperial agenda.
Big Lies substitute for hard truths. On Thursday, State Department spokesman Jeff Rathke repeated the canard about “Russian forces…on the territory of a sovereign neighbor, Ukraine, where they are working with, allied with, aiding and fighting alongside separatists whom Russia also backs on sovereign Ukrainian territory.”
At the same time, he ignored Kiev aggression, pretended its dirty war without mercy on Donbass is an “anti-terrorist operation,” and stressed America’s support for “what’s been happening in eastern Ukraine remains unchanged.”
He lied claiming “Russia continues to fuel the conflict in southeastern Ukraine, initiating attacks together with the separatists.”
“And we do know that the combined Russian and separatist forces continue to flout the terms of the February 12th Minsk implementation plan.”
Truth is polar opposite. Washington continues supporting Kiev’s naked aggression on Donbass.
Russia has done more than all other nations combined to resolve the conflict diplomatically.
It’s forces aren’t committing “naked aggression.” They’re not fighting alongside Donbass militias or supplying them with weapons and munitions.
Russia isn’t fueling conflict. It’s going all-out to stop it diplomatically. It fully complies with Minsk ceasefire terms. Kiev is a serial violator.
US scoundrel media bashing is relentless. On May 28, Wall Street Journal editors headlined “The Russians Are Coming, Again.”
They irresponsibly blamed Moscow for repeated Kiev ceasefire breaches. The following reads like bad fiction:
“Russian proxies on Saturday shelled Avdiyivka, a town in eastern Ukraine held by the Kiev government, killing a Ukrainian service member and a civilian in an attack that also shut down a coke-manufacturing plant.”
“On Sunday pro-Kremlin forces fired on Ukrainian positions near the port of Mariupol, killing a Ukrainian soldier and wounding two.”
“These are the latest in a growing series of Russian violations of the so-called Minsk II deal…”
Truth is polar opposite Journal editor Big Lies. Kiev is a serial aggressor, Russia a preeminent peacemaker.
Journal editors quoted an unnamed Western diplomat (likely a US neocon or UK counterpart) saying:
“The familiar pattern is recurring. Russia makes high-level assurances that it wants peace, and meanwhile stokes the violence on the ground with fighters and arms.”
Ukrainian defense ministry advisor Alexey Makukhin lied claiming so-called documents showing 50 – 80 daily Russian ceasefire violations.
There are none in contrast to multiple daily blatant Kiev breaches – including willfully targeting civilian neighborhoods, murdering noncombatant men, women and children.
Journal editors ludicrously said “Russian special forces…are infiltrating Ukrainian territory.” They cite two captured Russian nationals – civilians, not active duty soldiers.
They quoted from an Atlantic Council right-wing think tank propaganda report claiming nonexistent satellite imagery showing “Russian training camps stationed along the Ukrainian border are the staging ground for Russian military equipment transported into Ukraine, soon to join the separatist arsenal, and for Russian soldiers mobilized across Russian to cross into Ukraine.”
Not a shred of evidence supports these baseless accusations. Plenty debunks it.
On May 29, New York Times editors gave notorious Putin basher/serial liar Masha Gessen feature op-ed space for at least the second time this year.
She a former Washington-controlled Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Russian Service director propagandist.
Her job is proliferating Big Lies – systematically avoiding hard truths, putting out rubbish no legitimate editors would touch.
New York Times editors featured her op-ed titled “The Kremlin vs. The NGOs.
She bashed Russia’s July 2014 law requiring politically active NGOs getting funding from abroad to register as “foreign agents.”
Religious organizations, state companies and NGOs they founded aren’t affected by the new law.
Gessen ignored America’s Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA, 1938). It requires agents or organizations representing the interests of foreign powers in a “political or quasi-political capacity” to disclose their relationship and provide information about their activities and financing.
The law remains in force, amended in 1966, focusing on agents or groups working with foreign power seeking economic or political advantage by influencing US decision-making.
Other countries have similar laws. Putin explained Russia’s position saying:
“As far as the law is concerned, or rather the part of it that causes great discussions – whether the organizations that are engaged in internal political activities should register – we will not change this position.”
“This is because when people are doing some political work inside the country and receive money from abroad, the society has the right to know what kind of organization this is, and where they get the funds to sponsor their existence.”
Gessen also criticized Russia’s “undesirable organizations” law – irresponsibly claiming it’s “used to hit very hard what remained of civil society.”
The measure justifiably only targets foreign organizations posing a “threat to the constitutional order and defense capability or the security of the Russian state” – in other words, subversive groups up to mischief.
Russian officials call the law preventative – without naming any specific foreign organizations.
Given Washington’s longstanding hostility, Russia needs its national security protected – including legislatively.
Not according to Gessen, ignoring Russia’s free society and open media shaming their Western counterparts.
Moscow “will not quit until it has vacuumed up every last bit of free thought and independent activity,” she blustered.
On May 28, Washington Post editors discussed what they called opposition activist Vladimir Kara-Murza’s “mysterious illness.”
He collapsed in his office and was hospitalized. According to WaPo editors – suffering from “double pneumonia, pancreatitis and kidney failure.”
They quoted his wife suggesting he was poisoned, claiming his condition remained grave.
The hospital’s deputy head doctor later said his heart, lungs and stomach are OK. His illness was kidney related. “It could have been (caused by eating) spoiled yogurt or something else.”
No evidence suggested poisoning. WaPo editors indicated otherwise claiming “crude attacks on peaceful opponents in a country that wishes to be, and often is, treated as a global power.”
They used Kara-Murza’s treatable illness unrelated to Russian politics as an example of “the truth about (its) murderous regime.”
They ignored Washington’s ongoing multiple direct and proxy wars on humanity responsible for millions of deaths and unspeakable human misery in the new millennium alone – besides homeland police repression and turning US streets into battlegrounds.
US policy toward Russia remains hardline – same old business as usual masquerading as new leaf softening when John Kerry and Victoria Nuland meet with Putin. Media propaganda alone explains Washington’s dirty agenda. So do daily State Department press briefings.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at email@example.com.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.
It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.