EDITORIAL: An Iron Firewall Descends Across the Continent

EDITORIAL

An Iron Firewall Descends Across the Continent

“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

–George Santayana, The Life of Reason, Volume 1, 1905

Paul Goble, surely one of the most essential Russia correspondents in the world today (and for that reason surely one of the most endangered), reported on Christmas eve about the escalating efforts of Vladimir Putin’s jack-booted Kremlin to crush Russia’s internet, the last remaining vestige of real information in the country.  What we are seeing before our eyes is the repetition of history, and those both within and outside Russia who will once again stand idly by as an Iron Firewall descends across the contintent richly deserve the brutal suffering they will experience when the monstrosity finally clanks into position.

Citing Russian sources Goble says that, in the wake of the sensational protests against curtailing automobile imports that broke out recently in Vladivostok,  the Kremlin has moved from launching furtive denial-of-service attacks on opposition websites like Grani.ru to a “new and more active role” in which KGB officers “visited the moderators of the ru_auto Internet community and asked that they not post stories about the automobile protests, visits that intimidated some but encouraged others to go public.”

Goble continues:

Given Moscow’s efforts to control reporting on Vladivostok – the OMON beat journalists who were there to the point that several were hospitalized and the central electronic media have downplayed that and the events surrounding it – these official “visits” should come as no surprise given the importance of the ru_auto community on the RUnet. At present, that community united approximately 10,000 Living Journal users and includes from 10 to 100 new posts a day. And over the last few days, it has, in the words of kontury.ru become “an important center for the dissemination of information about protest actions” by automobile owners concerning Moscow’s boosting of import duties on foreign cars.

The response of the Russian bloggers has been to gradually move their hosting offshore.  Goble reports on one blogger’s chilling observation:

If a site is still hosted in Russia, he continued, it will be subject to official pressure both directly and via its hosting company, just as would have been the case for the Bolsheviks in pre-Soviet times, if their newspaper “’Iskra’ would have been published in a typography” operated by the Okhrana, the tsar’s secret police.

How can the world stand idly by and watch Russian history repeat itself?  How can the wordl possibly allow a whole new generation of Russians to be forced underground, terrorized and liquidated, waiting only for the day when the malignant ogre in the Kremlin turns its wicked eye towards them before taking action?  How is it possible that the world has not learned its lesson from its first experience with Soviet Russia?

These are the questions we are asking, and we are not getting satisfying answers from our so-called leaders, especially not from President-elect Obama, whose silence in the face of this crackdown is almost as chilling as the crackdown itself. Where are his liberal values?  Where is his purported courage and leadership?

We are waiting to see them.

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53 responses to “EDITORIAL: An Iron Firewall Descends Across the Continent

  1. Quite simply, those that lack the courage to defend liberal values are not liberals. The comment above about “history repeating itself” is particularly apt; shades here of Herzen and Kolokol…

  2. Something like 18% of Russians have internet access, subtract the numbers that view only social and stupid gossip sites and it’s appalling how poorly informed most Russians are. The lights are dimming on that pathetic country.

    What has never been understood by post-USSR Russians is that a civil society isn’t about acquiring stuff. The veneer of being modern when you live in a political dump isn’t enough. Any autocratic creep like Putin can take it away from you at will. Hermetrically sealed off from the world of our heretical ideas suits far too many Russians. Don’t expect to see any push back by Russians. Their Constitution just got trashed without a whimper.

  3. For penny.
    “The lights are dimming on that pathetic country” – feathers of horse. Why you so sure about your information and about my country?
    “Something like 18% of Russians have internet access”- nonsense. All of my friends have one.

    LA RUSSOPHOBE RESPONDS:

    If you’ll take the time to read our comment guidelines, you’ll see that we do not allow readers to make unsubstantiated factual claims at variance with sourced facts we have reported on this blog. If you continue to do so, you will simply be banned from commenting.

    Russian Internet access is precisely as Penny has described, you clueless moron. There are only 20 million active users in a nation of 140 milllion, in other words 14% of the population. Given that the average wage is below $5/hour while access costs the same as in the West, and given the fact that the Kremlin routinely arrests bloggers and harasses ISPs, that’s hardly surprising.

    http://larussophobe.wordpress.com/2008/03/14/bovt-on-the-internet/

    You have been warned. Do it again and you’re banned. Beyond that, your attempt to prove facts with anecdotes is simply childish and stupid, as such an embarrassment to this blog. Cease or else.

    All of my friends are interested in politics.All of my friends are visiting to foreign politics site. However most of my people vote affirmatively
    for our leader Putin and his follower Medvedev. US and EU with other “democracy” have attacked my Patronimic – Russia. Governments of US and EU and they servants (e.g. Saakashvilly, Juschenko ext.) in post-USSR make sabotage (play James Bond – agent 007). They occupy part of our Motherland – Kiev, Krim, Odessa, Charkov end other, They have aim for destroy Russian Federation. Maybe you do not see it in your lifeplace but it seems very clerarly for my in Russia.
    Thus there is a war between my Patronymic (Russia), who is victim and democratic force from west (NATO,US,EU with traitor in post Sov. area), wich is agressor. Therefore “A la guerre comme a la guerre” or “Business is business” and so, as you wrote: “Their Constitution just got trashed without a whimper.” While there is a battle democracy is a formidable obstacle for winning. Otherwise if our Constitution “is got trashed without a whimper”, then your Constitution is a lot of doodoo.
    I am apologetic for my bad English.
    Anton Russia Sankt-Peterburg antocha76@mail.ru

  4. Hey, I am Russian, you and your circle of friends count for nothing. Facts and statistics don’t lie. 4 out of 5 Russians aren’t participating after all of these years in the Internet Age which puts you in a league with the sad loser countries in the Third Word. 8 years of Putin with cheap and easy petro-dollars and Russians got nothing but more repression and empty promises. How dumb is that?

    Putin has a vested interest as all autocrats do in keeping the population as stupid and passive as possible. Misplaced anger like yours is good for him too. Putin is a garden variety thug. Trust me, you will be dumber and poorer as the years roll on. Putin and his KGB cronies are laughing at your expense all the way to their Swiss bank accounts.

    Oh, and, Russia is a victim of nothing but its own stupidity, arrogance and hubris. The EU has been buying Russian energy products at a fair price and Americans could give a damn about Russia so Russia’s lack of a civil society and continued poverty and ignorance has nothing to do with outsiders. No one is stopping Russia from being an admired model democracy with a solid middle class and with something other than weapons and misery exported to your neighbors but your own perverse anti-democratic attitudes.

    Here’s is some suggested reading for you by a person that I consider a real Russian patriot, Grigory Pasko:

    http://larussophobe.wordpress.com/2009/01/02/editorial-an-iron-firewall-descends-across-the-continent/#comments

    Perhaps if you had a little humility and a mind that wasn’t so closed you would make a difference in Russia becoming a better country.

  5. Sorry, wrong link, here is the corrrect one to Grigory Pasko:

    http://www.robertamsterdam.com/cgi-bin/mt4/mt-cp.cgi?__mode=view&blog_id=4&id=3

  6. Dear La Russophobe! I apologise, If I perpetrate a certain rule, but unfortunately I can not understand what I have violated. I live in Sankt-Petersburg, I am lawyer. My statement about Russian Internet access refers to my colleagues, my clients and my fellow student. Well among these people have no one who would not be constant user of internet. I and all my familiars have Internet access. Moreover most of us use internet for a work constantly. Next I can not remember that at least one of us could not pay for Internet access. We have got a different gains, but I am sure all of us earns significantly more then $5/hour. How can I give proof of it? I do not know. I can only invite you in my city.

  7. BOGDAN OF ENUCHALIA

    Anton from Russia; you are indeed a pathetic fool. You are alsobest example of how the mind of an eternal and enthusiastic SLAVE is functioning. There will always be a significant percentage of a people; a spineless mob who will support their leader, no matter how barbaric, corruptand debauched under the condition that he will relieve them from the obligation of thinking. You are supprting that mass-murderer Putin because of just that; he is indeed doing all the thinking for you. He made you to hallucinate about the some unspecified future (2020 perhaps- at least according to Medvediev’s recent ravings) when Babuskha Russia will become one of the leading economies and civilisations of the world and in the proces you became so blinded that you no longer are able to see that the Putviediev gang is leading you toward the abyss. Haven’t Germans supported Hitler with an equal enthusiasm and in such overwhelming number as well? Where it has led them? How has it all ended?

  8. Dear penny/
    When I spoke about Internet access, I would say that Putin are supported firstly by well-educated groups. I may affirm that the lower level of education end status of groups than less support of Putin. It is historical and patriotic question and so people who fell themselv Russians (in civilisation sense, irrespective of nationalities or citizens) are more educated, than they have more patriotic feelings. It is almost direct relation.
    P.S. I apologise for my bad English.

  9. “You are supprting that mass-murderer Putin” – unproved statement. Can think of nothing better. I could invent of 2-3 similar history/hour about any EU-US-EU presidents or prime-ministers (from Bush to Queen of England).

  10. Some wonderful example of Russian ” logic”. I see it on Russian TV every day. It goes like this:

    I am Russian // January 4, 2009 at 9:08 pm [See above] : “Something like 18% of Russians have internet access”- nonsense. All of my friends have one.”

    Excellent! How can the number 18% be correct, when ALL THE FRIENDS HAVE IT!

    Sounds just like “Vesti” or “Russia Today”.

    Just great… ;)

  11. … But what is not great is that people like “I am Russian” here actually seem to be the Model Citizens of the Putin’s Great New Russia, Standing Up From Its Knees. Horrible!

  12. Dear orknexus.
    Yes Russia and Russian, (in civilisation sense which includes all people of Russia end people who feel itself as Russian in near abroad) Stand Up From Their Knees. Perhaps it is horrible for you, but it is problem of your pathological russophobia.
    P.S. estonian court discharged today all Russian Patriot who had protested against replacing of Bronzovij soldat. It is Russian winning.

  13. Dear orknexus.
    Yes Russia and Russian, (in civilisation sense which includes all people of Russia end people who feel itself as Russian in near abroad) Stand Up From Their Knees. Perhaps it is horrible for you, but it is problem of your pathological russophobia.
    P.S. estonian court discharged today all Russian Patriot who had protested against replacing of Bronzovij soldat. It is Russian winning.

  14. Isn’t anyone familiar with RU Logic 101? If two other people confer with you, your statement is a fact. All of my friends agree with me on this, so it is indisputable.

  15. orknexus
    In fact most of all my acquaintances are follower of Putin,though they (100%) have access of internet and they are high-education people. This is sense of my previous comments. I do not know about statistic, but I am sure 18% – is not true for Russia, think (in my own experiance) that people who are 17 -35 years old have Internet access now (95-100%),at least it is true for Sankt-Peterburg.
    I am not rich man. I am not well paid employee, my earn (without bonus) amount only 40-50000 rub in month (near then 1000-1150 EURO), but cost of Internet access for month amount 1000 RUB (approximate 30 EURO). So Internet access is not very expencive for middle Russian.

  16. I am Russian – that you state are a lawyer, which I doubt, is disgusting. What part of Putin’s violations of your constitution and civil rights do you not understand? The censorship, the refusal to allow the political opposition to have access to the airwaves, the rigged elections, the suspended regional elections, and now the suspension of jury trials in “treason” cases?

    Khordorkovsky’s show trial and all of the other rigged Yukos trials have disgusted the American legal community. They have also disgusted the Human Rights Commision in the EU.

    But, you know all of this. It’s not news to you. It makes you a willfully unethical person without which Putin and all of the other autocratic thugs in history couldn’t exist.

    I really don’t have any more to say to you.

  17. Yes of course, Russia Stand Up From Its Knees. But it could be horrible only for some anormous russophobes.

  18. All Russia patriots (who had defended memorial of Bronzovij soldat) were acquitted today by Estonian court. This is win of Russia.

  19. I am Russian writes: “All Russia patriots (who had defended memorial of Bronzovij soldat) were acquitted today by Estonian court. This is win of Russia.”

    Actually, it is a win for Estonia, Estonian democracy and Estonian justice. It demonstrates that anybody in Estonia has a right to a fair trial and real justice, which is sadly more than I can say for Russia at this time.

  20. Dear Penny!
    But I have some to say to you.
    You are mistaken about perpetrating of Russia Constitution. There were indeed some exchanges in Putin period. But there were not considerable violating laws, rules ,rights. Otherwise Putin wage defensive war against terrorists, which were being supported by foreign special sicret servies and centres of influances of western countries (including “humanitarian organizations”). Aim of terrorists and their abroads patrons was – final territorial collapse my Patronymic land-Russia. It was certainly clearly. So Putin became so many supporters, who defended their families and homes against enemies.
    “A la guerre comme a la guerre” or “business is business” or “кому война, а кому мать родна”, there were many traitor in all levels of our country. It was necesserity reveal and neutralize them. Putin decided this task, Russia won war against terrorism.
    BUT US AND NATO DID THE SAME THINGS IN THE SAME TIME.
    I ask you how many violations of US constitution and civil rights were maden (E.g. by patriotic act) by pr. Bush?

  21. All Russia patriots (who had defended memorial of Bronzovij soldat) were acquitted today by Estonian court. This is win of Russia.

    It is proof of independence of Estonian legal system, maybe ineptitude of Estonian prosecutors compared to defense attorneys, maybe indifference of Estonian society towards lonely idiots (that let to down-prioritizing of this case by prosecutors).
    But how is it win of Russia? Somehow Russians cannot grasp the concept of court independence. It has never been that way in the USSR, it was embryonic in Russia, and killed by Medvedev on Dec 31.

    By the way all my Russian friends understand such independence; therefore all Russians must understand that concept; therefore “I am Russian” must not be Russian… </sarcasm>

  22. What was the topic again?

    Oh, yeah, Putin trying to stamp out free speech everywhere, including wiping out the Internet.

    What do the stupid little rooskies focus on?

    Big win for roosha.

    What win? Well, 4 ethnic rooshans in Estonia were accused of inciting riots.

    This was in connection with the decision of the Estonian government to move something that the little rooskie sovoks can’t seem to live without – a memorial in Estonia to the sovok soldier (note: the sovok union no longer exists, except in the minds of little rooskie sovoks).

    The 4 accused person were acquitted.

    So, naturally, little rooskie sovoks, in their delusional little minds LEAP to the conclusion that roosha scored a big victory over Estonia.

    Not that Estonian courts are trustworthy and just – just that somehow, an acquittal for trying to incite a riot means that roosha won something.

    What did roosha win?

    Well, we don’t know, but the little rooskie sovoks tell us that – roosha won.

    Freedom of speech?

    Who cares about that – roosha won – in Estonia!

  23. Hey, I am Russian, as trolls go you aren’t very interesting and the more you post the more I suspect you aren’t even Russian. Your stupidity doesn’t match up with a well with an educated Russian speaking English with an internet connection. Also, in spite of the time zones you have no problem responding immediately. That’s bizarre in and of itself.

    Your fifteen minutes of troll fame is up with me.

  24. The statistics provided by Penny are very likely correct – even if I am Russian is who he says he is it makes no difference to the general population if all his friends have internet.

    To I am Russian:
    Surely you have looked at the map of Russia, it’s a huge part of the world and although a considerable amount of the population is focused in the more advanced cities in the European half (read: on the western side of the Ural Mountains) such as Moscow and Saint-Petersburg, I think it’s safe to say that in other parts of Russia the Internet isn’t a widespread commodity. I mean… almost a century after the process of electrification there are still parts of the country with great human habitation that don’t have electricity.

    As for the others, get a grip. Ask anyone (especially Americans or western Europeans) about something similar for which they will have only their own experience to base their answer upon and you will be met with the same kind of disbelief if what you and what the statistics prove is different from what the person is accustomed to.

    Being Estonian myself I am greatly annoyed that these four were acquitted. Why?

    Firstly, because they actually are quilty of what they were accused of. If not directly then inadvertedly they did cause the riots that occurred. The fact is that there were phone calls that were recorded and other evidence but the way it was all processed was not perfect and that’s part of the reason why they could not be convicted.

    Secondly, I feel that when over 16 years of independence without any riots or violent outbreaks of the sort my hometown, a few blocks away from where I live actually, gets trashed because of some stupid Soviet symbol being MOVED, not REmoved I really do want to see the leaders, simply spiritual or not, of those mobs punished. True, they most likely weren’t there at all at the time when it all happened but they were the ones who fuelled the mobs before by overly dramatizing the situation.

    Thirdly, these men have, over and over, though often veiled, shown a Russian-chauvinistic approach to matters with complete disregard for what would be good for the majority of the population. All my Russian friends who are well-educated and open-minded regard them as chauvinists and dangerous to the state the way they are functioning at the moment.

    I DO think it is a win for the Estonian legal system in a way, however, because the men were not convicted when there was not enough tangible evidence and when mistakes were made. To Russians who would like to portray Estonia as a neo-faschist country with little regard to people’s legal rights this is a disaster, even though from a different point of view it is a disaster for Estonian nationalists as well.

    OK… Way off-topic there.

    In any case, the limitations being introduced for the Internet are only a logical step to follow because it really is one of the last few sources of information that isn’t in some way controlled by the Kremlin.

    P.S. I have nothing against Russians as people. I have nothing against Russian as a language, I even bought a new studybook today in order to finally learn it properly. What I do have something against is blind, imperialistic beliefs that dictate the Russian vision of politics and history,

  25. “I am Russian” sounds awfully like that cartoon character “I am ape” from nickelodeon.

    About the same level of argument too.

    Call me suspicious, but could the Estonian courts decision be more to do with avoiding the “Putin Doctrine” of stamping flat any country that “threatens the dignity of Russian citizens who reside within its borders”?

    Considering the lack of resolve shown by the EU (some would unsympatheically say arse licking) towards the monsters in the Kremlin, Estonia may be wanting to avoid the fate of Georgia (being served up to Putin on a plate by “surrender” Sarkozy)

    Here’s hoping the Israeli’s tell Sarko where to go when he tries to sell them down the river.

  26. Innocenti Vorobjanovitsh

    … and my first reaction:
    Unbelievable, how brainwashed morons here
    the ‘educated russas’ are.
    As example the ‘internet siberian’ :)
    I wonder, which are then the so called
    ‘less educated’ or average russkij´s in meantime.
    :)))
    And they don’t see anything around,
    they reside permanently into their’s chauvinism’s clouds,
    poor artificially simplefied souls with eye-curtains on both eyes.
    ——
    lol

  27. For penny.
    I am Russian in fact. My English is not good unfortunately. I apologised for this fact in my previous messages. I have learned ENG. only 7 month. I rely that I will be success in English. But I am well education and I have clear politics point of view. I am Russian Patriot how my Father and Grandfather. I apologis for my BAD ENGILISH again.
    But you do not reply on my question! I asked you how many violations of US constitution and civil rights were maden (E.g. by patriotic act) by pr. Bush? And EU-NATO violation of human rights in Ygoslavia?

  28. For Andrew.
    “Estonia may be wanting to avoid the fate of Georgia” – that is very reasonable will! Esionian leaders is not so dumm unlike Georgian president Saakashvily.
    What a pity that a sensible action of bad guy Estonia are beginning after licking of other bad guy – Georgia. We wish a peace for all country, but we are indeed able hold our own in any fight.
    “….Georgia (being served up to Putin on a plate by “surrender” Sarkozy)” – no it is not true Sarkozy is just sensible and politic leader. He is not Russian servant or surrender. He is not “Putins friend”. Few month ago he was giving a promise to press against Russia. He did that for body of electors . But he understands that he is under an obligation to safe interests of France and EU. He does not think that EU and France have to freeze and fight against Great Russia for mad Saakasvilly & Yschenko. There are many politicians like Sarkozy in Europa.
    But there are many Russian friends in the world now. For example which was “historical Russians enemy” and this country is member of NATO now. Turkey did not give admittance to Nato naval vessels through the Dardanelles and Bosphors to the Black sea (that instance was happen in the time of 5 day Georgian War). US squadron of naval vessels queued on during exactiy 5 day. Turkey did not give any pleadings under this situation to infuriated US state-secretar, because leader of this country spended all time in the Kremlin (Moscow) with Putin and Medvedev!!! Even Russian historical rival took part in ambuscade!!!
    You still plane to interference to Russian inner affairs in our near abroad?

  29. Mr. Magic I apologise for my bad English.
    Do you learn the Russian language If I right understood? Well then let my to quote one short Russian proverb: ” Есть ложь, есть страшная ложь, а есть самая страшная ложь – это статистика”.
    If you sensible man, as I hope, I advice you to visit in Rissia. I promise, you will be surprised.
    There are very much positive change in my Country.
    There are many indeed well-educated people, who visit abroad for a work and holiday constantly. There are many people who have internet access. Most of these live in Saint-Peterburg and Moskow, but this is not the end of number. I repeat already 5 time that people who have not Internet access in Russia just do not will themselv for it now. But you will be surprised that the more well-educated person the more Patriotic and anti-western is one. Most of low-educated people are as a rule apolitical. It is a main difference as compared with 1991 when USSR was destroyed by well-educated people who voted against communists on the first free election. Russian INTELLIGENCIJA was great opposition force against communism during period of communism. However INTELLIGENCIJA was principally RUSSAN PATRIOTIC Force! So all of these people (or their children) vote for Putin. Essentially well-educated people are basis of Putin. Phenomenon of Putinism is a new happening wich is not alike to Soviet period.
    It happened because west (US,EU,NATO, different without-state-systems) betrayed Russia. US and NATO proclaimed themselves as “winner of cold WAR” and have behaved as a winner. At first It was clearly for INTELLIGENCIJA. Obviously Putin won war against terrorism. He prevent disintegration of the Russian Federation.
    Well basis of “Putin supporting group ” is not FSB or KGB. Russia resistance (INTELLIGENCIJA) -is a support tu Putin.
    But Russia resistanse is class of very clever people. Russian resistanse is not Afganistan or Irak or Serbia. There are other methods of Russia resistance and Russia will be exist as Great State.

  30. Some comments here are hilarious. For example, this dude that calls himself “I am Russian”. He writes:

    Well then let my to quote one short Russian proverb: ” Есть ложь, есть страшная ложь, а есть самая страшная ложь – это статистика”.

    The clumsy Russian part can be translated as “There are lies, damned lies, and the most damned lies is statistics”. So, for the rest of the world this is a quote phrase attributed to Benjamin Disraeli and popularised in the United States by Mark Twain. But noooo – for our dude it’s a short Russian proverb.

    There is only one Russian proverb that is funnier than that: Россия – родина слонов (Russia is birthplace of elephants).

    Yes, dear your English is so bad – it’s difficult to understand what you are trying to say. But what you say is so stupid, that nobody in his right mind will even try. And you can ask your pathetic (which stands for бездарный, not патетический) question when you are invited to the next staged open line with dear Prime-Minister. Maybe you will get a nice dress and invitation to the new year party with your grandmother!

  31. Some comments here are hilarious. For example, this dude that calls himself “I am Russian”. He writes:

    Well then let my to quote one short Russian proverb: ” Есть ложь, есть страшная ложь, а есть самая страшная ложь – это статистика”.

    The clumsy Russian part can be translated as “There are lies, damned lies, and the most damned lies is statistics”. So, for the rest of the world this is a quote phrase attributed to Benjamin Disraeli and popularised in the United States by Mark Twain. But noooo – for our dude it’s a short Russian proverb.

    There is only one Russian proverb that is funnier than that: Россия – родина слонов (Russia is birthplace of elephants).

    Yes, dear your English is so bad – it’s difficult to understand what you are trying to say. But what you say is so stupid, that nobody in his right mind will even try. And you can ask your pathetic (which stands for бездарный, not патетический) question when you are invited to the next staged open line with dear Prime-Minister. Maybe you will get a nice dress and invitation to the new year party with your grandmother!

  32. Gee “I am racist Russian bigot” (your full name).
    Once again you get quite a few facts wrong.
    Actually what happened was that Russia wanted Tukey to block the black sea to US warships, and Turkey refused. As is widely known in the real world, the tonnage of NON BLACK SEA warhips transiting through the Dardanelles is controlled by treaty. What the Turks did (to the public fury of Russian pillock Lavrov) was to loosely interpret this to exclude from the total tonnage in the black sea those ships in the Dardanelles or docked at Istanbul, thereby allowing a far higher tonnage of US warships in the region. By the way, Turkey & the Turks (I work for a Turkish company) absolutely HATE Russians, and are committed to foiling Russian expansion in the area (after all they have only had 8 or 9 wars with Russia in the last 200 years). So much for your assinine comment about the Turks keeping out US ships in order to please the Russians, in fact the opposite was true.
    The other funny thing is that the entire Black Sea fleet was terrified of ONE USN guided missile destroyer, which had the capability to rease the Russian fleet BY ITSELF!!!

    As for your comment that communisim collapsed because of “russian intelligentsia”, which by definition is an oxymoron, sadly the truth is that communisim collapsed because the oppressed subject peoples of the Russian empire (Georgians, Latvians, Estonians, Lithuanians, Ukranians, Kazakhs, Moldovians, Tajiks etc) finally decided they had had enough and told Russia to get out & this factor was combined with the absolutely PATHETIC state of the soviet economy, which meant that (as now) the Russian leadership of the USSR was writing cheques it could not cash.

    Russia reponded with its predictable brutality, sending in the troops against peaceful protesters in Tbilisi on Apr 9 1989, and into the baltic republics in 1990, which only accelerated the collapse.

    Once its empire collapsed the Russian state, rather than accept the situation and create friendly ties with these restored states, proceeded to undermine them, by supporting terrorist movements, especially in Georgia (interesting to note that for a short time Shamyl Besayev was shown on Russian TV as a great hero, playing football with Russian soldiers in Gagra using Georgian civillians heads) and committing massive atrocities against the Georgian people.

    Russia then turned on its Chechen servants by using brute force to crush what was originally a small independance movement, causing most of its Chechen fighters to take up arms against their former masters.

    Saakashvili may have faults, but he is a lot better than Putin. What makes him the bad guy? That he was trying to defend his people against a mad Russian dog Putin? Is self defence something only you Russian “svinea” are entitled to?Unfortunately “I am ape”, you will never understand how much suffering your “culture” has caused to your former imperial possesions (both in the former soviet union & easter europe) because like most Russians you lack a real education. The term “highly educated Russian” seems to be a contridiction in terms especially if you are anything to go by.
    Take for your example that those in Russia who do not have internet access “do not will it”. More like are trying not to starve.

    Your lack of intellect is shown by the comment that “Putin defeated terrorism”, he certainly has committed war crimes, but the north Caucasus resistance movement is alive and well. By the way, there is considerable evidence that the “terrorist” crimes used to justify the invasion of Chechnya were actually committed by the RUSSIAN FSB.

    Russia will never be a “great state” in terms of being respected internationaly. Russia is, as it always was, viewed with a mixture of derision & disgust for the vile behaviour of its leadership, and the stupidity of its so called “educated” classes.

    “I am Russian” you are entitled to have your say, but you always come off like the kid who wets his pants in public.

  33. 1. “Yes, dear your English is so bad – it’s difficult to understand what you are trying to say. ” – yes but it is not crime because Eng is not my native lang. and I began to learn it only 7 month ago (before that I did not know any anglish word)!
    BUT BASED ON YOUR COMMENTS I SOW THAT YOU UNDERSTOOD ME BEATIFULLY!
    Actually US military force could not help for Saak-ly thanks to the Turkish position. Legal excuse can be found. Convention Monro is a just Legal excuse. AND TURK. PRESIDENT SPEND time during Georg. war IN MOSCOW with pr. Medvedev but no in Tbilisy or New York. As the and of Geogian war Russia end Turkey presidents had signed Convention about Caucasus which refer to new geopolitical situation after Russian win in Georgia war. US was very unhappy about it.
    2. “But what you say is so stupid, that nobody in his right mind will even try. ” – there are one old dirty method if you have no say you may name yours opponent as stupid. Perhaps your statements go by opposites, arent you?
    3. “Russia reponded with its predictable brutality, sending in the troops against peaceful protesters in Tbilisi on Apr 9 1989, and into the baltic republics in 1990, which only accelerated the collapse”. – If Russian could safe USSR (not Russian!) empire, they could make it. But Russian voted for support democratic changes in 1991 (on the first free election in USSR history). Only Russian people destroyed USSR no US no NATO no separatists from near abroad!

  34. For Felix.
    If that proverb has Eng. origin, then I apologise. There is no one man hwo can know all in the world.
    BUT IF “There are lies, damned lies, and the most damned lies is statistics” is a widespread English expression, then why you pull me up constantly with your “statistic”?! I live in Russia during 32 years and I am witness of all Russians developments at first hand unlike you!

  35. Andrew,
    Well said, especially the part about the Russian navy’s fear of one Aegis Destroyer. Russians seem to believe that the rest of the world is as corrupt and ignorant as they are, and they are here to teach us all a lesson. There seems to be no end to their delusions. They demand respect when acting like 19th century barbarians. Russia could have been a great country, but IMO communism has ruined what could have been a great people, now just full of hate and envy for everyone else on planet earth. Russia is a threat to world peace and stability.

  36. obamayomama

    “Russia is a threat to world peace and stability”. – perhaps it is truth as well as EU, UK, Geoegia , Belorussia, Iran, Bulgaria, New Guinea, Six mysterious flying saucer-shaped objects, New Year, Papa Carlo!

  37. Россия – родина слонов (Russia is birthplace of elephants).

    Funny!

    If you read the Stalin biography, “Young Stalin,” you learn that Stalin had a printing press in his early days before he came to power – which he very carefully hid from the authorities.

    Then, of course, when Stalin came into power, he banned all media – except his own.

    In the rest of the world, people embrace the Internet.

    In sovok roosha today, they do everything they can to squish it.

    The one thing that “I am baboon” didn’t mention:

    his “friends” may indeed have the Internet – but they can’t say anything on it freely, or they get arrested.

    So they are reduced to blubbering “all hail Vlad Dracul Putin,” or blubbering about CIA plots – or about saucer-shaped objects.

    Ask Taras Zeleniak, the guy who got arrested, and whose case was covered by LR previously, if there is freedom of speech on the Internet in roosha.

    Putin is not perfect.

    Go ahead, “I am rooshan baboon,” I dare you – tell us one thing that you don’t like about Putin.

    Just one. I dare you.

    And remember – if you say anything that Putin doesn’t like, you’ll get arrested.

    Stupid кацапи.

  38. Obamayomama, I agree entirely.
    I would also like to point out “I am Russian” is showing the typical Russian disregard of international law. The Monroe convention is a LEGALLY BINDING document on Turkey regarding the number of ships entering the Black sea, not a legal excuse. In addition, if Turkey is so pally with Putin etc, why are they helping to rebuild the Georgian military. In addition the Turkish PM did visit Tbilisi during the conflict, and also threatened to bomb Russian toops approaching Batumi, citing another “legal excuse” the treaty of Kars.

    As usual “I am baboon” has shown his true status as an amoral intelectual failure.

  39. @IamRussian…quote “But you do not reply on my question! I asked you how many violations of US constitution and civil rights were maden (E.g. by patriotic act) by pr. Bush? And EU-NATO violation of human rights in Ygoslavia?”.

    I will be the first to admit there have been violations by some if not all of these countries/institutions. The difference being that they have been held accountable by transparency in the media and the courts and have been made to rectify the situation or at the very least apologize.

  40. ya know, I am Baboon, if you stop shortening every single word you’ll stop sounding like a brainwashed soviet or an Orwell’s “1984”-character. It would also help if you’d stop USing in in the middle of wordSS that don’t really lend them to your point. That just makes you sound bigoted, opinionated and uneducated. These points have nothing to do with bad English, just bad manners.

  41. For elmer
    I quote you: “Россия – родина слонов (Russia is birthplace of elephants).
    Funny!
    If you read the Stalin biography, “Young Stalin,””

    No Russian is not birthplace of ALL elephants!!!
    ONE OF THE ALL WAS STALIN – WHO WAS GEORGIAN. Memorials of Stalin still decorate that beautiful democratic region now (e.g. – huge monument in Gory) with US flags. Beautiful country unlike bad bad bad Russia!

  42. I said

    Yes, dear your English is so bad – it’s difficult to understand what you are trying to say.

    You said

    BUT BASED ON YOUR COMMENTS I SOW THAT YOU UNDERSTOOD ME BEATIFULLY!

    As if it somehow contradicts what I said. It only means that I made an extraordinary effort to dissect your gibberish, and it was not worth it.
    Won’t happen again, I promise!

  43. For Felix
    As you like!

  44. Did you have a point you wanted to make, “I am rooshan”?

    Tsarina Catherine was from Germany (Prussia).

    Neither of them had the Internet.

    You know, the Internet – the thing that Putin is trying to squish in roosha.

  45. elmer
    I really do not understand your speach about “Tsarina Catherine was from Germany (Prussia)”. Yes of course, and my origin from Poland! Well, what of that? Just Russian civilisation is very interracial unlike US which devour millions American Indians and hold in slaveries millions black people (and now US makes pathetic attempts to teach Russia to democracy )!
    In addition, when Great Ekaterina was Russian czarina US only proclaim its independence!

  46. Yeah, yeah, yeah, little rooskie sovok, roosha great, invented everything, US bad, had slavery, “devoured” American Indians – you learned your sovok propaganda history well, little rooskie.

    Except that this is now the 21st century, Native American tribes are recognized as sovereign entities in the US, and there is no slavery, and hasn’t been for a long time.

    In roosha, it took a long time to get rid of serfdom. Then came the sovok union, and reinstituted serfdom.

    And Putin is continuing the tradition.

    “rooshan civilization” – now there’s an oxymoron for the ages.

    What point were you trying to make about the Internet?

  47. Gee “I am Russian” seems to forget that Russia held 90% of its own population in slavery too. It was called serfdom.
    Yes what happened to the native americans was bad, but Russia was much worse towards the natives in the areas it conquered, such as the Siberian natives, Lapplanders, Finns, Estonians, Georgians, Ukrainians, Poles, Chechens, Ingush, Dagesh, Azeri’s, Tajiks, Khazaks, Tartars, Turkomen, Meshkian Turks (conquests up to 19th C), and in the 20th C, you can add the Bulgarians, Roumanians, Chzechs, Slovaks, Hungarians. Russia is still a nation of barbaric government, extreme racisim (just look at all the Russian ultra nationalist hate crimes against minorities)

    At least the US demolished slavery and punished the southern states accordingly, it has apologised to the first peoples of the Americas and also to the African Americans who suffered under slavery and attempted to make amends.
    The USA is the most ethnically diverse nation on earth ( I am not American by the way ) which, in case you failed to notice, has just elected a black President. Considering the majority of the US population is still white this kinds of puts a big dent in the “racist USA” theory.

    If you want to play the me first game, well Georgians were making wine, building Churches and sending missionaries to Russia to teach Russians how to bake bread and wear clothes when the Russians were still wearing animal skins and living in the forests (3rd Century), and were making wine and Iron tools over 1000 years before Russia even existed.

    North America was being colonised by the French, British, Dutch, & Spanish before Russia was even a state, so get off your high horse “I am baboon” and start reading history.

  48. Elmer
    Quote:”“devoured” American Indians – you learned your sovok propaganda history well, little rooskie”.
    Well servitude of many and many millions of black people – there is sovok propaganda too!?!?
    Or perhaps that was immigration to “freedom country”?
    Serfdom – was a paradise as compared with slaveholding plantations in USA!

  49. “I am Russian baboon” gets it wrong again.
    If serfdom was so wonderful how come there were so many attempted and also successful revolutions? Serfdom was a living hell right up to the bolshevik revolution of 1917 (when it was replaced by the hell of communism), and don’t start on about Alexander III freeing the serfs, as most of his great reforms were rolled back or ignored by his reactionary successors. A good example being Alexander allowing Serfs to leave a property and go to a new master being subsequently restricted to a 24 hour period at midwinter, literaly a death sentence for anyone trying to leave a hard master.
    Serfs were property to their owners, Russian “nobles” (I know its a contridiction in terms) behaviour towards their serfs was invariably brutal, frequently murderous.
    Russian floggings of serfs witnessed by foriegners just prior to WW1 were absolutely horrific, with the victim frequently dead or crippled for life.

    The conditions that Russian serfs lived in even in the 1930’s & 40’s were far worse than those suffered by Africans in the old south, at least the slaves in America could escape to the northern states & Canada on the “undergound railroad” (an escape route run by WHITE americans I might add), the Russian serfs had nowhere to run to. Any serfs attempting to flee from Tsarist masters were hunted down and violently punished, and any serf, I mean proletariat farmer attempting to flee the soviet collective either got a free trip to a labor camp in siberia or a 9mm brain haemorrage.

    As usual “I am Russian” shows himself to be a poorly educated baboon.

    Lets see, the USA is a nation founded on immigration you moron.
    98% of its 300+ million people are either immigrants or the descendants of immigrants. The reason why so many people, black, white, hispanic, asian, indian etc have emigrated there and continue to do so is because it is a free, democratic nation where they can build a better future for their children. Contrast this with Russia, which has a declining population, and institutionalised racism towards foreigners, where the majority of the population still live in poverty, and where an autocratic government relies on hate filled morons such as yourself swallowing twisted drivel from soviet style “history” (Russian history books should be labeled fiction) books.

    As I said, try reading some history. “The Gulag Archipelago” would be a good start.

  50. Andrew
    “Alexander III freeing the serfs” – No Alexander III -Alexander II! You do not know Russia history. And I repeat that selfdom was a paradise as compared with black slavery n plantation! I will explain this period of Russia history later on. I have not got any time now because my holiday ended and my work started. See you late!

  51. Actually “I am Russian” you are correct, it was Alexander II, I was writing a bit fast an made a typo. Alexander II made some reforms, was assasinated by Russian extremists, and replace by Alexander III who proceeded to roll back his reforms. My typo does not however excuse your ignorance and stupidity.

    Unfortunately your argument that serfdom was a paradise compared with slavery does not stack up. As usual you offer no arguments, only banal Russian propaganda slogans.

    The reason for your lack of informed argument on this matter is the fact that you have no valid arguments to make in defence of your pathetic views.

    You have still not successfuly argued against any of the evidence & arguments that people such as Penny, Scott, Elmer, or others such as myself have made.

    No we see the final refuge of the lying baboon “I have not got any time now”

    However we should welcome your rediculous posts I guess, as you simply confirm everything “La Russophobe” is trying to say about your repulsive nation.

  52. Andrew
    Quote: “You have still not successfuly argued against any of the evidence & arguments that people such as Penny, Scott, Elmer, or others such as myself have made”. – You evaluate himself too expensive Andrew (really your and yours friends are pathetic enough). Just I must work for support my family. I have no time in workdays. But I will send a new message Saturday.By all means!

  53. “I am Baboon” speaks, and the world laughs.

    Really “I am” you do need to learn to argue effectively. Things like historical facts tend to help. Of course your problem is that history & facts tend to support our side, not yours.

    Once again you have failed to ague your point little one, and you are simply a waste of everyones time.

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