M. sent these links:
F. William Engdahl: The Rape of Ukraine: Phase Two Begins with NATO mercenaries (Sunday Times; also at 21st Century Wire)
An legitimately-elected (said by all international monitors) Ukrainian President, Viktor Yanukovich, has been driven from office, forced to flee as a war criminal after more than three months of violent protest and terrorist killings by so-called opposition.
His “crime” according to protest leaders was that he rejected an EU offer of a vaguely-defined associate EU membership that offered little to Ukraine in favor of a concrete deal with Russia that gave immediate €15 billion debt relief and a huge reduction in Russian gas import prices. Washington at that point went into high gear and the result today is catastrophe…
Ever since the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991 the crack-para-military UNA-UNSO members have been behind every revolt against Russian influence. The one connecting thread in their violent campaigns is always anti-Russia. The organization, according to veteran US intelligence sources, is part of a secret NATO “GLADIO” organization, and not a Ukraine nationalist group as portrayed in western media.
The United States helped defeat Nazism in World War 2. Obama helped bring it back.
It’s called Godwin’s law. The longer a debate rages, the greater the likelihood that someone will compare someone else to Hitler.
And Hillary Clinton has done just that: On Tuesday the former secretary of state reportedly told a private fund-raising party that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s actions are similar to Hitler’s in the run up to World War II…
After all, in the eyes of many ethnic Russians, it is the Ukrainian nationalists — not Putin — who are the Nazis. The Russians have asserted, quite accurately, that the revolution that overthrew a pro-Russian, democratically elected leader has resulted in the elevation of Russophobe fascists into key government positions. For example, the new secretary of the Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council is Andriy Parubiy — co-founder of the Neo-Nazi Social-National Party of Ukraine (SNPU).
Another creator of the SNPU is Oleh Tyahnybok, a high-profile leader of the Kiev protests who has blamed Ukraine’s problems on a Jewish conspiracy run out of Moscow. Ukraine’s new deputy secretary of national security is Dmytro Yarosh, leader of the Right Sector group, which regards Tyahnybok as a soft liberal and which flies the old flag of the Ukrainian Nazi collaborators at its rallies.
In other words, in this situation, who exactly are the Nazis?
Colum Lynch: Beijing and Moscow Part Ways Over Ukraine (Foreign Policy)
Days after Ukraine’s deposed President Viktor Yanukovych fled his Kiev palace, an unassuming, mid-level Chinese diplomat appeared before the United Nations Security Council to highlight Beijing’s support for the new pro-Western government, marking a rare diplomatic split from Moscow.
“We respect the choice made by the Ukrainian people on the basis of national conditions,” Shen Bo, a counselor at China’s U.N. mission said in a Feb. 24 statement that went largely unnoticed by the international press.
Shaun Walker, Harriet Salem, Paul Gallagher: Ukraine PM warns of war as Russian military seizes control in Crimea (Guardian)
Shaun Walker, Ian Traynor: Russian military moves in Crimea are declaration of war, says Ukrainian PM (Guardian)
The Ukraine crisis: John Kerry and Nato must calm down and back off (Guardian)
Both John Kerry’s threats to expel Russia from the G8 and the Ukrainian government’s plea for Nato aid mark a dangerous escalation of a crisis that can easily be contained if cool heads prevail. Hysteria seems to be the mood in Washington and Kiev, with the new Ukrainian prime minister claiming, “We are on the brink of disaster” as he calls up army reserves in response to Russian military movements in Crimea.
Pepe Escobar: Carnival in Crimea (Asia Times)
The new prime minister of Ukraine, Arseniy Yatsenyuk, is – what else – a “technocratic reformer”, code for Western puppet. Ukraine is a (torn) basket case. The currency has fallen 20% since the start of 2014. Millions of unemployed Europeans know the European Union does not have the dough to bail out the country (perhaps Ukrainians could ask former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi for some tips).
In Pipelineistan terms, Ukraine is an appendix to Russia; it’s Russian gas that transits through Ukraine to European markets. And Ukrainian industry depends on the Russian market. …
Without Russia, Ukraine will totally depend on the West to pay all its bills, not to mention avoid being bankrupt. That amounts to a whopping $30 billion until the end of 2014. Unlike Egypt, they cannot dial the House of Saud’s number and ask for some juicy petrodollars.
Chris Floyd: Ukraine, Omidyar and the Neo-Liberal Agenda (CounterPunch)
As Vladimir Gligorov said: “Why should I be a minority in your country when you can be a minority in mine?”
Ian Traynor, Paul Lewi, Kim Willsher, Patrick Wintour: Ukraine crisis: Crimea announces referendum on joining Russia (Guardian)
Против войны! За самоопределение! (Боротьба)
Все – на митинг за самоопределение и самоуправление 8 марта! (Боротьба)
Nicolas Maury: Rostislav Vasilko, dirigeant communiste à Lviv (Ukraine) torturé par les néonazis de EuroMaïdan (Istres Grand Lyon)
Florian Rötzer: Moskau droht mit militärischer Intervention (Telepolis)
Florian Rötzer: Diplomatie ohne Erfolg (Telepolis)
Thomas Eipeldauer: »Ein Bürgerkrieg ist möglich« (junge Welt)
Susann Witt-Stahl: Argument Kalaschnikow (Hintergrund)
Konstantin Wecker: Ich kann diese Verlogenheit nicht mehr ertragen. (wecker.de)
Nick Alexandrov: Ukrainian Democracy: A Barrier to Washington’s Goals (CounterPunch)
Who is Washington’s chief enemy in Ukraine? Is it Russia, bent on killing Ukraine’s budding democracy? Is it the tyrant Yanukovych? The U.S. policy record points to a different conclusion, one a Johns Hopkins Center for Transatlantic Relations study—included in the official transcription of the Senate’s 2012 “Ukraine at a Crossroads” hearing—discusses in the context of Ukraine’s potential NATO membership. “The main obstacle” to Ukraine’s joining the organization “is not Russian opposition,” its authors emphasized, “but low public support for membership in Ukraine itself.” Again: on this and other issues, the Ukrainian people are “the main obstacle” to U.S. foreign policy aims. We should bear this fact in mind as the crisis deepens in Eastern Europe.
Peter Lee: Problems in Ukraine? Blame Russia! (CounterPunch)
Statement of Communist, Left-Wing and Patriotic Left Forces of Russia on the Situation in the Ukraine (Красное ТВ)
Петр Симоненко: Обращение Первого секретаря ЦК КПУ Петра Симоненко к товарищам по партии (Комуністична партія України)
Edward Lucas: Don‘t be fooled by her angelic looks, she’s as ruthless as she’s corrupt: A withering portrait of Ukraine’s ‘saviour’ (Daily Mail)
‘Trigger-happy’ Israeli army and police use reckless force in the West Bank (Amnesty International)
Israeli forces have displayed a callous disregard for human life by killing dozens of Palestinian civilians, including children, in the occupied West Bank over the past three years with near total impunity, said Amnesty International in a report published today.
Amnesty International documented the killing of 22 Palestinian civilians in the West Bank in 2013. At least four were children. According to the UN, more West Bank Palestinians were killed by Israeli forces in 2013 than in 2011 and 2012 combined. In the last three years at least 261 Palestinians, including 67 children, have been seriously injured by live ammunition fired by Israeli forces in the West Bank. More than 8,000 Palestinians in the West Bank, including 1,500 children, have been wounded with rubber-coated metal bullets and the reckless use of tear gas since January 2011.
And here is the rather bizarre response from the occupation force:
Amnesty International Report Ignores Palestinian Violence (Israel Defense Forces)
In its upcoming report, Amnesty International wholly ignores the substantial increase in Palestinian violence initiated over the past year, and shows a complete lack of understanding as to operational challenges the IDF faces.
2013 saw a sharp increase in rock hurling incidents, gravely jeopardizing the lives of civilians and military personnel. 132 Israelis were injured during that year alone, almost double the number in 2012.
Yasmine Saleh: Court bans activities of Islamist Hamas in Egypt (Reuters)
An Egyptian court on Tuesday banned all Hamas activities in Egypt in another sign that the military-backed government aims to squeeze the Palestinian Islamist group that rules the neighboring Gaza Strip.
Patrick Kingsley: Al-Jazeera trial: prosecution presents contents of journalists’ hotel rooms (Guardian)
Trial in Egypt descends into farce on day two as everything from journalists’ hotel rooms is presented as evidence by prosecution.
Spencer Ackerman, James Ball: Optic Nerve: millions of Yahoo webcam images intercepted by GCHQ (Guardian)
Britain’s surveillance agency GCHQ, with aid from the US National Security Agency, intercepted and stored the webcam images of millions of internet users not suspected of wrongdoing, secret documents reveal.
GCHQ files dating between 2008 and 2010 explicitly state that a surveillance program codenamed Optic Nerve collected still images of Yahoo webcam chats in bulk and saved them to agency databases, regardless of whether individual users were an intelligence target or not.
In one six-month period in 2008 alone, the agency collected webcam imagery – including substantial quantities of sexually explicit communications – from more than 1.8 million Yahoo user accounts globally.
Amy Goodman, James Ball: Peeping Webcam? With NSA Help, British Spy Agency Intercepted Millions of Yahoo Chat Images (Democracy Now)
Glenn Greenwald, Murtaza Hussain: The Moazzam Begg Arrest: Part of the Effort to Criminalize Muslim Political Dissent (Intercept)
Moazzam Begg, a native-born British citizen of Pakistani descent, spent three years incarcerated in the most notorious detention camps created in the post-9/11 “War on Terror”: all without ever being charged with any crime.
Arrested in Pakistan in 2002, he was transferred to Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan, where he suffered torture and witnessed U.S. interrogators beat an innocent taxi driver to death, and then onwards to Guantanamo Bay where he would be detained for the next three years in conditions he’d describe as “torturous”.
Throughout this time Begg, now 45, was repeatedly deprived of legal counsel and was prohibited from even viewing the alleged evidence against him. After public outcry in his home country resulted in his repatriation to England in 2005, Begg went on to become a human rights activist — writing books, and advocating for other post-9/11 detainees through his organization Cageprisoners, whose self-described mission is: “working to empower communities impacted by the War on Terror”; “campaigning against the War on Terror”; and “working with survivors of abuse and mistreatment across the globe.”
Ryan Devereaux: UK Court: David Miranda Detention Legal Under Terrorism Law (Intercept)
A British lower court has ruled that London police acted lawfully in employing an anti-terror statute to detain and interrogate David Miranda for nearly nine hours at Heathrow Airport last summer, even while recognizing that the detention was “an indirect interference with press freedom.”
Glenn Greenwald: On the UK’s Equating of Journalism With Terrorism (Intercept)
The UK Government expressly argued that the release of the Snowden documents (which the free world calls “award-winning journalism“) is actually tantamount to “terrorism”, the same theory now being used by the Egyptian military regime to prosecute Al Jazeera journalists as terrorists. Congratulations to the UK government on the illustrious company it is once again keeping. British officials have also repeatedly threatened criminal prosecution of everyone involved in this reporting, including Guardian journalists and editors.
Ahn Mi Young: North Korea Doing Fine Without the South (Inter Press Service)
If the North Korea of the 1990s was seen as a starving nation that produced an exodus of hungry people, then the picture should be even gloomier now – six years after it stopped receiving South Korea’s generous aid. But it’s not. The nation of 24 million people, widely said to be the most secretive in the world and a nuclear threat, appears to have weathered the years well.
Today, more people are reported to be better off. Many are engaged in trade. Its communist regime, inherited by the 30-something supreme leader of North Korea Kim Jong-Un after his father’s death in 2011, is actively wooing foreign investors and tourists, and introducing reforms. Pyongyang has even softened its attitude towards Seoul to resume talks.
North Korea has been gradually weaned off South Korean food and goods.
Yves Engler: Remembering the Overthrow of Haiti’s Jean-Bertrand Aristide, part I | part II | part III | part IV (CounterPunch)
Mark Berman: This chart shows how Chinese became the new French (Washington Post)
Chinese has overtaken French as the most common language in the United States other than English or Spanish, while Tagalog and Vietnamese have leapfrogged Italian and German.
These are some of the biggest takeaways from this Census Bureau chart examining how language usage in the country shifted between 1980 and 2010.