EDITORIAL: Boot Russia out of the Council of Europe!

EDITORIAL

Boot Russia out of the Council of Europe!

Russia has only less than one-sixth the population of Europe, yet it has nearly one-third of all pending cases for human rights violations before the European Court for Human Rights, which is organized and maintained by the Council of Europe — of which Russia is a member.  Russia has nearly three times more cases pending before the EHCR than any other nation, and Russia loses nine out of ten cases when it is prosecuted by the EHCR.

The Kremlin’s response to its horrific human rights record — as adjudicated by one of the world’s most respected courts —  has been quite simple: It is moving to oust the court’s jurisdiction from Russia.  That’s fine, in fact it’s probably rather unfair to expect a nation of corrupt baboons to allow themselves to be controlled by something like the rule of law.

But as former Russian parliamentarian Vladimir Ryzhkov argues in the Moscow Times, it means that Russia must be ousted from the Council of Europe, and the sooner the better.  We call upon the COE to heed Ryzhkov’s words and move forward immediately in standing up for its core values and casting Russia out.

And we state what is obvious:  If Russia had the slightest shred of national dignity or honor, it would simply resign.

Just days ago, Holland imposed sweeping sanctions on numerous high-level Kremlin officials because of their role in the brutal torture and murder of attorney Sergei Magnitsky.  What this makes clear is that the rulings of the EHCR are not enough, that individual European nations are forced to take matters into their own hands.

And the Kremlin’s own actions make this equally clear. By moving to allow Russian courts to disregard the EHCR’s rulings, the Kremlin is taking the first steps towards a neo-Soviet cover-up of Russia’s atrocious human rights record. Instead of giving Russian citizens more legal rights and more respect, the Kremlin want to do just what they did in Soviet times, hide the facts and repress the population.

Russia cannot be allowed to behave in this manner and retain its membership int he COE.  The organization must move immediately to oust Russia from membership, so that it cannot be used for propaganda purposes by the Putin regime to undercut domestic opposition.  Ryzhkov speaks for that opposition, and they are saying clearly that it is time for the COE to act.

We join in this call. It is an abomination that Russia is allowed to parade itself before the COE pretending to be a civilized European nation when in fact Russia flouts every basic European value at every turn.  The people of Europe should try to remember their dark history of appeasing evil, and remember the horrific consequences fo that policy. They should stand up an demand that Russia honor its COE membership or have it revoked, and they should do so without delay.

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83 responses to “EDITORIAL: Boot Russia out of the Council of Europe!

  1. Russian nationalist

    I like your rhetoric but not your proposal to oust Russia from the COE. It’s interesting that you share this view with the most reactionary Putin’s puppets in the Russian parliament. The ECHR and the Council of Europe in general are among a few international mechanisms to put the constant pressure on the Putin’s junta. This international pressure combined with the parliamentary decisions of some countries (like recent Dutch one and the pending American one) are extremely important for those in Russia who try to protest against Russian current political regime.
    Moreover, if you go to the ECHR database you’ll find out that before Russia the countries with the highest number of cases adjudicated by the European Court were the UK (Northern Ireland) and Turkey (Kurds). I don’t remember somebody was talking about ousting the Great Britain from the Council of Europe.

    • Even if what you said were true, and it’s not, you ignore entirely the fact that COE membership is very useful to the Putin Kremlin because it can be used for propaganda purposes, while the COE’s weak actions on human rights are easily concealed by Putin from the majority of Russians through the Kremlin’s control of television news. Conversely, being in the COE gives Russia the chance to influence European human rights policy, inevitably diluting its position on Russia. We’re not aware of any significant changes in Kremlin policy that have resulted from CEO pressure. As such, we think the balance clearly favors ejection, .

      We’re not sure where you get the idea that Turkey or Northern Ireland ever had human rights issues remotely comparable to Russia, or that people in the West have not savagely criticized those countries for being as bad as they are. If they did, and for some reason people concerned with those countries (as we are concerned with Russia) remained silent, we don’t see why that means Russia should also be ignored. We don’t know of any evidence that either country openly flouted and sought to undermine the jurisdiction of the COE or was governed by a proud relic of a secret police establishment that engaged in mass murder, as Russia is.

      And above all, your claims about the opposition are directly contradicted by our link to Vladimir Ryzhkov, one of the highest-ranking and best-credentialed leaders in the opposition, who calls for Russia’s ouster.

  2. Russian nationalist

    “…your claims about the opposition are directly contradicted by our link to Vladimir Ryzhkov, one of the highest-ranking and best-credentialed leaders in the opposition…”
    I wrote to you once before that your source-base on the current Russian opposition is extremely narrow. In fact, you are a loudspeaker of a very limited segment of the Russian opposition represented solely by its “liberal” faction; Kasyanov, former prime-minister; Nemtsov, former vice prime-minister, Ryzhkov, former parliamentary deputy etc. While writing on Russia you constantly refer to a few individuals who support this particular “liberal” segment; Kara-Murza; Latynina; Nossik and a few other authors from “The Moscow Times” and “Novaya Gazeta”. I understand the political views of the “liberal” opposition strike a chord with your political preferences. It’s perfectly fine. However, it’s too shaky basis for a claim that the blog represents more or less comprehensive picture of the Russian political processes.
    There is a range of oppositional forces in Russia who challenge Putin’s junta. They occupy the whole political spectrum: from the leftist groups, to “unsystemic” communists, socialists, social-democrats, liberals, nationalists etc. By some reason you chose to talk on behalf of the “liberal” group arguing that it’s the only opposition to the regime.
    You never mention a range of other oppositional forces who are more radical in their fight against Putin’s junta. Those people get locked up for years, get killed and mutilated by the secret police. I personally don’t share Eduard Limonov’s political views but I always give him credit for his and his followers’ fearless struggle against Putin’s regime.
    You never mention Russian nationalists who represent a real not a virtual “liberal” threat to the regime.
    In result the picture you draw on the Russian political events is distorted and biased.
    I believe your partisan biasness is obvious for any informed scholar of the Russian contemporary politics.

  3. he is simply trying to draw people’s attention to what is going on in an obviously corrupt nation. surely you cannot expect a wordpress editorial to point out every last possible thing that is wrong in Russia. There just isn’t enough server space for that. La Russophobe – keep doing what you are doing. I am proud to be Ukrainian-American, because at least I know the language I speak is true Ukrainian, not the russified crap that comes over now.

    • Well said andrij, must agree 100% with you except, I am Ukrainian-Australian.

      I personally believe that LR supplies a honest and superb STERLING service!!! Little wonder that they hold the top spot “blogger” position.

      So unlike the pure propaganda and lies spewed out on Russia Today or Pravda.ru.

    • Russian nationalist

      Andrij, I undoubtedly respect the blog’s efforts to talk about corrupted nature of the current Russian regime. However, I am afraid La Russophobe makes a serious mistake when it looks at other anti-Putin forces within Russia through the prism of the blog’s darlings, that is, “liberals”. As I said above the anti-Putin opposition is more wider social and political phenomenon than just a few former Yeltsin’s officials and a dozen liberal intellectuals and journalists with some publicity in the West.
      Besides that the blog along with the anti-Putin rhetoric (what is good) too often tends to verbally abuse ethnic Russians on the basis of their ethnic background. It’s a very dubious way to increase blog’s popularity.

      • Honestly, Russian nationalist, Do you REALLY believe a bunch of rambling and raving Western imbeciles would care about Russia’s well-being? If so, your nationalism is phoney in the extreme. They attack your country because their betters cannot run it as their colony.

        • Russian nationalist

          My nationalism is about my people, about Russians who have been used for centuries as cannon fodder for building various kinds of empires including RF, the latest version. I don’t care about others, sorry.
          The Russian Federation now is the ugliest version of a colony based on direct export of raw materials and capitals. The junta exploits Russia’s natural resources takes billions of dollars abroad investing virtually nothing into the country’s industry, infrastructure, science, education etc. Putin and his regime’s intentions are to squeeze my people dry. They don’t associate their own future and future of their children with the cow they are tirelessly milking. They are occupants who adequately treat the local population. I can’t accept the occupational administration as my national government.

        • Russian baboon wrote:

          ‘They attack your country because their betters cannot run it as their colony’- this last sentence – could you translate it into English, please????

          comment;
          russia was ‘colonized’ by home grown barbarity, obscenity, total lack of freedom, so the outside world has nothing to do with russia’s demise.

          The signs of demise – The Russia’s flying coffins, e.g., Tupolevs, Antonovs, etc are dropping from the Russia’s friendly skies almost on a daily basis – the perfect advertisement for the Sochi Olympics’ official carrier – Aeroflot, the sixty year old ship still operating in Russia [this junk was built in Czechoslovakia almost sixty years ago, discarded by the Czechs but still good for Russia]. Greetings from free, democratic and prosperous Poland!!

          • Слышали ли вы что-либо подобное — у нашего напыщенного Пшекa есть толще голова, чем Папы ! Смерть не люблю глупых.

            Кто о чем, а вшивый пшек о бане…

            Greetings from Sweden, “prosperous” Pshek.

            • no kak diela, obosranyi ruski riab – kakaya prelest smotrec na etot ruskiy bardak – gdzie niczto ne rabotayet, gdzie vsio graznye i obosranye – naverno stranno zyc v shvecji gdzie wsio czystyje – ya nadeyus shto ty sdelal pervyi shag i upotreblayesh toaletnuyy bumagu ili ty dumayesh shto eto kapitaliczeskaya propaganda……

          • Russian nationalist

            I have nothing against Poland. I respect any country which persistently pursues the policy of its national (and nationalist) interests.
            I am more cautious about “prosperous Poland” though. Otherwise how come the British coined so many jokes about the Polish plumbers? Usually people don’t leave in hordes their “prosperous country”, do they?

            • “mccusa” is either foolish or a provocateur, but Poland actually does very well, especially considering the circumstances (the starting point in 1989 was being in a very deep economic crisis, with severe shortages of everything including food and a huge foreign debt):

              http://www.imf.org/external/np/speeches/2010/032910.htm

              • And before the reforms (of all kinds), it was more like that:
                http://www.tenetour.com/history9.php

                • Russian nationalist

                  I’ve been to Poland a few times. I saw the results of economic reforms which in the Polish case were conducted on EXTREMELY favourable Western financial terms.
                  “In March 1991, the Paris Club granted Poland debt and debt-service reduction on exceptional terms for a middle-income country… it provided debt reduction equivalent to 50% in present value… In 1991 – 1993 annual interest payments to the Paris Club were reduced on average by over $2 billion…” etc.
                  “Poland: the path to a market economy”, by Liam P. Ebrill
                  “The Polish miracle” was generously paid by Western tax payers. And still millions of Poles prefer to look for their luck somewhere else out of Poland (thanks to the EU membership).

                • russian nationalist, Mother-russia was in charge of Poland, we remember very well her tender matherly touch – barbaric murders of millions of Polish people, gulags, starvation, total lack of humanity, political assassination and above all, revolting dirt all over the soviet ‘paradise’ Let me share my own experience in the USSR. The only thing I remember is a public toilet at Kurskiy Vagzal in Moscow – walls covered with excrements up to the ceilings all in the shapes of human hands – apparently that how the Russian proletarians clean themselves with the bare hands but that on this sh@#$%ty wall the lenin’s portrait was hanging IT WAS TRULY VINTAGE RUSSIA. But we in Poland appreciate the russian concern about ‘situation’ in Poland. What a selfless attitude to worry about Poland, russian nationalist, while one million russians a year die of semi-starvation, alcoholism, drug abusese, total lack of medical care [hospitals in russia are at the same levels as those of Uganda, where the only infrastructure that works are the gulags, where treatment of old people and the children in russia are beyond barbaric – you steal from russia’s old sick people and defensless children – what an honorable thing to do!!! does the expression ‘bezprisornyie’ ring the bell? russian nationalist??

                  • Russian nationalist

                    MCCUSA I see we have a lot in common. You don’t like oppressive Soviet regime – neither do I. You hate contemporary Russian corruption, political hypocrisy – so do I. You care about your nation – so do I. Don’t you think that we are on the same side?
                    The only difference between us is that you gloat with satisfaction about what is going on in Russia while I feel absolutely gutted and devastated.

              • What’s extraordinarily impressive in the realm of democratic achievements is Poland’s CIA torture dungeons. Western democracy never ceases to amaze, right?

                http://inteldaily.com/2011/06/they-call-this-justice-supreme-court-gives-cia-torturers-boeing-a-free-pass/

                • Russian Baboon wrote:

                  What’s extraordinarily impressive in the realm of democratic achievements is Poland’s CIA torture dungeons. Western democracy never ceases to amaze, right?
                  comment;
                  How can anybody compare ‘Poland’s CIA torture dungeons’ and Western democracy that never ceases to amaze our russian baboon to that perfect ‘democratic’ russia with its magnificent gulags where the russian half animals walked by millions like pigs to the slaughter houses, without any resistance, selfrespect or dignity, just to save the so called ‘russian empire’ that can only be described as a ‘barbaric idiocy’. We, in the West, hope that Monsieur Putain will reopen the gulags, by the way, the only infrastructure that works in russia, and you will march back to the gulags. My only hope is that ALL THOSE WHO WILL MARCH BACK TO THE GULAGS WILL BE ETHNIC RUSSIANS…..

                  • Manfred Steifschwanz

                    Польша — страна католических дерьмовщиков и тюремных пыток. Вчера Oświęcim и сегодня ЦРУ.

                    Enjoy your “prosperity” for all I care.

                    • russian bartakhlo, russia’s humiliation is simply cosmic – flying coffins e.g., tupolevs, antonovs are dropping off the russia’s skies, air forces comes down to some crappy old helicopters [see the last military parade in moscow] the symbol of russian navy is ‘kursk’ – by the way, for the majority of retarded russian ‘Kursk’ is on the underwater mission chasing the american spies, bulava rocket are great but cannot be lounched, otherwise perfect example of russian technology…What a country of progress and invention – let me see what russia invented recently; gulags, chernobyl and tea with polonium – have I missed anything dearie…..

                    • Manfred Steifschwanz

                      Смотрите — грязный Пшек ползёт на полу. Что у него во рту?

                    • Hey barakhlo, the whole world thinks that oswiecim-auschwitz was created by the germans, to prove it here is the example, the germans starved 3 million russian POWs in Auschwitz, just out of total contempt and disgust for everything russian, just to refresh your memory… Hitler even resented, at first, those willing russian/soviet soldiers who left the soviet army by millions, and swore loyalty to Hitler; the fuhrer insisted that any russian presence will soil the purity of the german soldiers, just to refersh your memory…..By the way, any plan to cruise on the volga river ??? Russia is humiliating itself on a daily basis – what are you, russians, amoebas???

                    • Manfred Steifschwanz

                      Эта очень радостная весть: mccusa не человек — он пшек ! Это объясняет всё. Какая зловонная тварь. Слава Польше :-)

            • I have nothing for or against Poland, but of course even after those reforms, Poland is no France or Switzerland, not economically or politically. So, why are you surprised that Poles move to the West? And of course, the added reason is that they now can. Can you imagine how many more Russians would have fled if THEY could, their patriotism and love of the motherland notwithstanding?

              • Russian nationalist

                Synopsis of our trend for you LOL: We started discussing “prosperous Poland” here. I expressed my doubts about Polish prosperity on the ground of mass emigration out of the country. Besides I mentioned well-known facts of the Western big-hearted financial participation in the Polish reforms (by the way I forgot to point out that the Polish foreign debt accumulated before 1991 was forgiven all together).
                Despite these efforts the Poles still emigrate out of the country. This fact obviously doesn’t allow us to be complacent about the Polish economic achievements. The End LOL

                • I told you, read this article. It explains everything: It’s much more just naivety than any desperation (and even the completely failed immigrants keep up the myth of the “promised land” awaiting them in the Western Europe where the grass is greener).

                  About this and other waves of emigration:
                  http://culture.polishsite.us/articles/art367fr.htm

                  Anyway, about the effects back home:

                  When Poland joined the EU, registered unemployment was around 20%. After some time in single digits amid post-accession boom, Poland’s registered unemployment rate was at 13.2% in February. Survey-measured unemployment, a more credible figure that shows the percentage of people actively looking for jobs, is lower. The average pay in Poland remains below the average for the western part of the EU, but so is the average cost of living.
                  http://blogs.wsj.com/emergingeurope/2011/03/04/poland-expects-new-smaller-wave-of-emigration/

                  • Russian nationalist

                    Robert, I can’t get what you are trying to prove? Are you saying that Poland is better off now than it was before? Of course it is. It is the result of united Western efforts. Nobody argues otherwise.

                  • Russian nationalist

                    Robert, because of my professional training I am more used to dealing with facts and their interpretations rather than with artistic metaphors. Do you work with the refugees and social misfits? It seems you have some moralizing inclinations. LOL
                    Whether the grass is greener or not it’s obvious that the economic, legal and social systems of the Western societies look quite attractive. I think it’s a matter-of-fact statement. No?

              • RV, did you ask yourself why Poland is not yet France or Switzerland; here is the answer, because France and Switzerland are far away from that barbarity and obscenity called russia, so those lucky countries didn’t go through the horror of russian/soviet plunder, robbery and distruction of everything that was good, sophisticated, tolerant and based on the Western value that are based on Christianity – the Church of Rome… Keep reading this paragraph…..

  4. “We’re not sure where you get the idea that Turkey or Northern Ireland ever had human rights issues remotely comparable to Russia”
    &
    “Northern Ireland cannot be really compared to the slaughter of North Caucasus, the entire conflict took only less than 3,500 lives in 30 years.”
    So that’s ok then. We can excuse the detention without trial, summary exectutions, torture and coverup by UK govt, and special forces as it was only 116 people per year over the period of the conflict. Please get a life.
    Even better, visit Ireland and speak to the locals about it.

    • Actually most of “the detention without trial, summary exectutions, torture” was by the so-called paramilitaries on both sides (including the self-proclaimed “loyalists”, who were also illegal).

      And these “116 people per year” included more than 1,000 dead British troops (out of over 3,000 total deaths, mind you), which was also more than 3 times the number of the dead Irish-Republican paramilitaries – because thousands of them were detained and tried in court, and only a few hundred were killed in all the raids and clashes, including those who were killed by rival paramiltaries).

      Also, not a single village was burned down, Ulster was never bombed by aircraft nor bombarded by artillery (except of mortar attacks by the IRA), not to mention becoming the most destroyed city in the world (like Grozny in the early 2000s). There were no “filtration camps”, no hundreds of mass graves, no exodus of most people. Thousands of people were not “forcibly disappeared”, Northern Ireland didn’t became a territory with most land mines in the world. And so on.

      “Please get a life.” Some argument?

      Most of the victims of the Northern Ireland conflict in general were killed by paramilitaries (more than 1,000 British troops, victims terrorist bombings, of sectarian murders, killings of informants and such). Kind of like many more people were killed in the Irish Civil War (in the newly-independent Republic of Ireland, between radicals and moderates in the original IRA) than in the Irish War of Independence against Britain (on both sides and in between).

      Here’s a short film about paramilitary violence madness during The Troubles:

      • Russian nationalist

        I can compare Chechnya and Northern Ireland. I visited both in 2000. Although murder of any person is still murder these two are incomparable in terms of the death toll and devastation.
        Nevertheless, when the Western human rights activists and professional Russophobes  talk about Chechnya they turn a blind eye to one more dimension of the conflict. They have sudden memory loss about non-Chechens (mostly Russians) who had been raped, killed, robbed, and kicked out of their property in Chechnya BEFORE the conflict started in 1994. It seems that Chechens’ lives are more precious for those righteous people than the lives of gang-raped Russian women and the lives of their murdered Russian husbands.
        I hope when the Russian nationalists separate the Northern Caucasus from Russia we’ll be able to draw more comprehensive picture of what happened to Russians in non-Russian areas of the RF and other republics of the former USSR immediately after its breakdown.

        • Here we again.

          Most Russians also left, say, the neighbouring Ingushetia (which used to be one entity with Chechnya in the Soviet times, and had 43,389 Russians in 1939 but only 5,559 in 2002, according to Wikipedia). Had they been “raped, killed, robbed, and kicked out of their property”, too? And nothing about simply escaping the rampant poverty and unemployment – notice how the Russian pensioners stayed behind in Chechnya? Remember, Ingushetia did not even had an independence movement prior to the 2000s (before Aushev was forced out by Putin).

          Like what actually happened to tens of thousands of ethnic Ingushes in North Ossetia (who are mostly still displaced). They were really either killed (hundreds) or violently evicted (some also taken hostage before expelled), and this happened over the course of just few days (it was all over in one week). Oh, and the federal forces took the Ossetian side in their (real, fierce) interethnic conflict, but that’s not even what I’m talking about.

          The same (Russian exodus) goes for much of the rest of the region, as you said. How would this even be possible? Did the federal forces (and Russian police) aid such ethnic cleansings everywhere, like they did in North Ossetia? And how about all these Chechens (Ingushes, Dagestanis, etc.) living in Moscow and such, were they also forced out by their own compatriots? (No, I’m not talking now about the likes of Alkhanov, Gantamirov or Isa Yamadayev, when this is actually true.)

          Oh, and also, for example, the rural Siberia (multitude of ghost villages and towns abandoned as the population left in search of a better life elsewhere, leaving only the old people behind), were they all “raped, killed, robbed, and kicked out of their property” by the uppity indigenous Siberians or something?

          Now, the situation in Chechnya was worse than in the neighbouring republics, but because:
          1. Dudayev fired all Russians from the jobs “esential for national security” (kinda like what Milosevic did to the Kosovars in the police, army and administration when the autonomy of the province was stripped in 1990). It was discrimination, yes. The Russians felt it very bad, especially those in Grozny who used to be a master race for generations (especially in 1944-1957, when no Chechens were even allowed to live in Chechnya), and now really suddenly it’s them who became the second category citizens.
          2. The Russians had no clan ties and no tradition of revenge (Russians generally displayed little family bonds there, except of the mothers famously looking for their missing soldier-sons during the war – but the younger Russians were not looking for the pensioners they had left behind), leaving them very valnuarable to criminals (many of them with posts in the new administration, like the mayor of Grozny Beslan Gantamirov before he fell out with Dudayev and defected to Yelstin, and Dudayev’s abortive permit to bear arms in public did not help in the breakdown of public order).
          3. There were deaths during the revolution (like the head of the Communist Party, who famously either fell out while trying to flee or was pushed out of window) and some unorganised revenge killings (according to the powerful blood feud tradition, and there was quite a lot to avange for 1944 so it would be bad for the former NKVD members), but that’s it about politically motivated violence.

          But mostly, because the economic failure was even worse than elsewhere. But nothing really comparable to what happened, say, to the Arabs and Asians during and after the revolution in Zanzibar (an extreme case of decolonisation – some really ugly stuff, or the fate of the French colonialists and collaborants in Algeria), but there’s a huge Russian myth of the “Chechen genocide” anyway.

          Zanzibar was like that (a crazy Italian crew flying over as it was happening):

          • Oh, and also add to this the escalating Chechen conflcit of 1993-1994 (Dudayev loyalists vs the opposition and Russian mercenaries, in the end it was like a regular civil war), which certainly wasn’t making it a better a place to live and another case of why to move out. But then again, Siberia is completely peaceful but the exodus took place too.

            Anyway, on state-level it was not worse than Turkmenistan, and yet “President Yeltsin held Turkmenistan up as an example for the other CIS states” instead of destabilising and then bombing and invading the country (killing thousands of ethnic Russians, too):

            Chronology for Russians in Turkmenistan (Minorities at Risk Project)
            http://www.unhcr.org/refworld/category,COI,MARP,,TKM,469f38eac,0.html

            • And here’s about the criminal violence of 1993, when the republic descended into anarchy:

              http://www.watchdog.cz/?show=000000-000015-000006-000060&lang=2

              But don’t forget Labazanov was kicked out of “his” skyrise building by Dudayev, who sent tanks to do it, and later served Yeltsin (as did the also mentioned Beslan Gantamirov, until after the war he was thrown in prison in Moscow but not not for his plunder of 1991-93 but for the financial crimes of the 1995-96 period, until Putin got him out for the sequel and so he once again became a mayor of Grozny in 2000). So these two criminals who were mentioned by name in the article were just unideological opportunists, who only wanted ever more power and wealth (like a proper gangster’s motto).

              Unlike, say, the proverbial “Chechen bandit” Shamil Basayev, at this time busy with winning the war in Abkhazia for GRU and with other such adventures, and whose “group did not seek to get involved in the dividing up of spheres of economic influence or in criminal showdowns” (a quote from a study by the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies in 1995). Basayev was very ideological, and he has sacrificed everything, from all his money, to all his family, to his life. I remember Yastrzhembsky’s claims in 1999 of how they allegedly “found and destroyed the plane intended for Basayev to flee abroad”, talking about the same Basayev who has soon walked conciously into a field of butterfly mines, and got his leg blown off, just to personally set example how volunteers should quickly clear a path out of there before the Russian artillery zeroes on on them – I wonder if Yastrzhembsky, or Putin the balding Russian Bond superhero (his greatest KGB feat of international fraternal friendship of peoples was to allegedly pull a gun on a crowd on unarmed locals celebrating the fall of East Germany), could do something like this too.

              But of course Dudayev’s is to blame for accepting such blatantly criminal figures into his inner circle (at least at first), and for the irresponsible arming of general population during peacetime in the late 1991-early 1992 that contributed to the breakdown of civil orde, and later quite a few Chechens even turned these very guns against his regime in 1993-94.

              (I wanted to write “many”, but then I remember how both sides, the government and the united opposition plus Russian mercenaries, had only about 3,000 men each at the peak as they have been chasing each other back and forth in all the cities and villages, which was not much if compared to more than 40,000 volunteer fighters who then rallied behind him against the Russian intervention – Dudayev’s actual regular army (a few understrength “regiments” and the spetsnaz battalion, and the air force with practically no personnel) of mid-1994 wasn’t very much larger than Raduyev’s “General Dudayev’s Army” private militia gang of the interwar period.)

          • Russian nationalist

            Robert, I am sorry but it’s stupid to deny mass facts of rape, killings and violent robberies of ethnic Russian population which had occurred in Chechnya before 1994. If evidences of the ethnic Russian victims are not translated into English it doesn’t mean that they don’t exist at all. Do you read in Russian?
            http://conrad2001.narod.ru/russian/genocide/genocide.htm
            http://genocide-chechnya.front.ru/
            http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-449152828878337252#
            http://pavel-slob.livejournal.com/433163.html
            These are very unpleasant facts for both Putin’s junta and your liberal friends from “Novaya Gazeta”. The former made himself a pet in the face of Ramzan Kadyrov who according to his own words killed his first Russian victim when he was 16 yo. The latter think that ethnic Russians are not worth talking about at all.
            Please don’t insult my intelligence with taking various facts out of the context as you do with comparison Siberian “ghost villages” (mostly former military garrisons on the border with China) and exodus of the ethnic Russian population out of the North Caucasus AND Central Asian repblics of the former USSR which happened under pressure of everyday violence.

            • Why not compare with the mass rapes, murder, and enthnic cleansing of Georgians from Abkhazia by Russian forces and “volunteers” in 92-93.

              Do you deny your peoples crimes in this war?

              • Russian nationalist

                Andrew, you have a very weird, primitive perception of guilt/responsibility as a collective phenomenon. It’s probably OK for some tribal legal consciousness but not for a person of “Irish Catholic descent”. LOL Do you want me to be responsible for both decisions of the government I don’t accept as my national government and for actions of mercenaries I am not aware of? Moreover, majority of the volunteers in Abkhazia were Chechens from Confederation of Mountain Peoples of the Caucasus. Did you know about that?
                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confederation_of_Mountain_Peoples_of_the_Caucasus

                • Wikipedia? Please.

                  They were hardly “mostly Chechens”, they were from all over the Russian North Caucasus and included various nationalities. Let’s begin with this: the organisation was founded in 1989 in Karachay-Cherkessia, by this Kabard: http://www.circassianworld.com/new/interview/1346-interview-musa-shanib-may-2009.html and militarily it was led by a guy from Kabardino-Balkaria too. Basayev’s Chechen volunteer force was just 1 battalion (later known as “Abkhaz”) – no matter how many ridicalous sources will say it was 3,4 or even 8 thousand strong, when the Russians invaded and joined by volunteers it was only 800 men in January 1995.

                  • Russian nationalist

                    Robert, stop helping Andrew! LOL
                    The only thing I can conclude from load of information you put here is that the Abkhazian side in the conflict of 1991-1992 was ethnically diverse and motivation of “volunteers” was extremely mixed. It makes Andrew’s claim about “Russian atrocities” in Abkhazia meaningless.
                    I should reiterate again I DON’T care about Russia as a state. I see the Russian Federation as the imperial prison of the ethnic Russians. I want ethnic Russians to divorce with the parasitic North Caucasus and have their own NATIONAL STATE. You understand? Not empire but a normal NATIONAL state of the Russian people.

                  • Russian nationalist

                    I see you in the West don’t understand some important developments in the Russian nationalist movement. We, new democratic nationalists, support establishment of the Russian NATIONAL state (or states). The primary concern for us is the well-being of ethnic Russians. We see imperial legacy as a burden which must be discharged. You understand? North Caucasus out of Russia!
                    Here are some publications explaining our position (in Russian):
                    http://ru-nazdem.livejournal.com/
                    http://shiropaev.tk/

                • About the foreign fighters:

                  In the case of the Abkhaz conflict, many of these “outside” fighters came from the Confederation of Mountain Peoples, a loose coalition of ethnic, tribal, and regional groups in the Caucasus mountains (unrecognized by Moscow), which early on in the conflict aligned itself with the Abkhaz. Fighters from the regions represented by this Confederation, Chechens in particular, showed up on the Abkhaz side very soon after fighting started. Several hundred of these fighters were airlifted from Gudauta during one of the early, Russian-brokered, cease-fires.

                  It may be overstating matters to say that these fighters were “sent” by the Confederation. The fighters in the Confederation respond to local leaders; some of those leaders, however, sent fighters or went with their men, while other fighters went individually. According to interviews conducted by Human Rights Watch, motivations for joining the fighting varied. Some fought because they felt solidarity with a small ethnic group (the Abkhaz) who were fighting for independence from a larger administrative territory. The Chechens, in particular, were fighting a similar fight, trying to win independence from the Russian Federation.[196] Others fought merely for the purpose of gaining weapons; they showed up to be issued a rifle and ammunition, and then slipped away.[197] Others fought for booty; in numerous interviews by Human Rights Watch, refugees and captured combatants stated that the worst pillage was committed by the “outside” fighters.[198]

                  In addition to these fighters, a significant number of ethnic Russians who did not previously reside in Georgia or Abkhazia have been seen fighting on the Abkhaz side. Although Human Rights Watch has evidence that at least some of these fighters were professionals paid and sent to the conflict by some branch of the Russian government in Moscow, many more appear to have been freelance, including Cossacks.[199] Their motives for fighting also appear to have been mixed. Some fought for various perceived political causes, including Russian nationalism, others for what they perceived as the oppression of the Abkhaz (identified for these purposes with Russia), and again others for the perceived oppression of ethnic Russians in Georgia.

                  A third category of “outsider” combatants consisted of ethnic Abkhaz from Turkey, Syria or other places of Abkhaz diaspora. Abkhaz authorities acknowledged that they had received significant financial assistance from the Abkhaz diaspora, in addition to an unspecified number of essentially freelance fighters.[200]

                  These categories of outsiders fought almost entirely on the Abkhaz side. Their numbers were so significant at certain points in the conflict that press reports and the U.S. State Department estimated that they constituted a majority in the September 1993 battle for Sukhumi.[201]

                  http://www.unhcr.org/refworld/country,,HRW,,GEO,,3ae6a8274,0.html

            • http://conrad2001.narod.ru/russian/genocide/genocide.htm
              Yeah, a crazy guy in a Soviet cosplay, of course I know this one.

              http://genocide-chechnya.front.ru/
              Seriously? Also these pornographic ads at the bottom are so classy, the best thing there.

              Now, Ramzan has murdered at least two people in 1996-99, it was an acquitance of his who had won a snooker match against him (they argued and this got out of control) and some random guy who had angered him by cutting a line at a gas station (road rage, Chechnya). I don’t know their ethnicities, or if he’s now bragging about it (maybe he does), but I know that his dad has ensured he would got away with both murders and so it was pretty hushed over at the time, also Ramzan was a complete nobody and just a driver for his dad. (Note that now he’s built a myth about himself, spreading a story of how he used to be a “platoon commander” when he was literally a kid and what not, but it’s all lies. And his cousin and now right-hand-man Adam Delimkhanov was also just a driver, for Raduyev.)

              • Russian nationalist

                I sent you the link to read the text not to stare at the pornographic ads. I know it might be distractive.
                I am not here to argue that the wars in Chechnya were justified by the violence against ethnic Russian population. The wars were started because of “imperial” set of mind within both Yeltsin’s and Putin’s federal governments.
                I believe that Chechnya and other republics of the North Caucasus must be separated from Russia with introduction of strict visa entry system. All Chechens residing in Russia should be transferred to visas (student, business etc). If they don’t meet visa requirements they should be deported to Chechnya.
                I like Estonian experience when they categorised as “non-citizens” those (mostly Russians) who came to Estonia after 1940. We have to do the same in Russia and proclaim “non-citizens” those who came to Russia after 1991.

              • Russian nationalist

                Robert, I see your immediate specialisation is the North Caucasus. I would like to ask you a few questions:
                1)What do you think about the prospective North Caucasus separation from Russia?
                2)Do you accept that there WERE ethnic cleansing of the ethnic Russian population in Chechnya prior to 1994?
                3)Do you agree that under the current legal and political system the ethnic Russian population is being discriminated? (no political entity within the RF contrary to numerous national non-Russian republics and autonomous regions etc.)
                4)Are you ready to discuss the situation of the ethnic Russian population with the same vehemence you discuss the situations of the Chechens and Co?

                • 1. All the countries that left the USSR in 1990-91 manage (more or less).

                  2. If it’s in this meaning http://www.crimesofwar.org/a-z-guide/ethnic-cleansing/ then not really. Many left on their own, there were still a plenty to be killed by the shells and bombs (here notice no mass violence against them from “the rebels” during the war), and even Dudayev’s widow Alla’s a Russian and Natalia Estamirova was half-Russian.

                  3. I think it’s more like everyone’s “discriminated”, except of the “ruiling elite” (of various nationalities, all what matters is their loyalty to the “power vertical”).

                  4. Not sure if I understand the question.

                  • (Estemirova)

                    • Nationalist, Robert’s denial of Chechens’ atrocities against the Russians is very similar to the Holocaust denial. There are 3 explanations to Robert’s either genuine naivete or to his attempts at playing a propagandist here: (i) he could be working with ethnic Chechen refugees — there are a lot of those in Poland — so he might be excessively exposed to biased accounts of the events; (ii) as a result of the Western media’s biased coverage of the story and the fact that the Chechens have grounds to litigate against a country in forums like ECHR (the luxury the relatives of Russians murdered, tortured, enslaved, evicted, robbed — or all of the above — by the Chechens do not have), Chechens’ claims and/or evidence (mostly claims though) of atrocities against them are much better documented (especially in English) than Russians’ stories of the horror inflicted on them by the Chechens; (iii) he could be deliberately denying this to advance his agenda (after all it looks like he has few things to do but to peruse vast volumes of materials about wars, social unrest, revolutions and to repost part of these materials here).

                      I am sure you’ve read a lot of stories like these:
                      http://www.izvestia.ru/news/299041
                      Also, I am sure you met someone in Russia who can provide first-hand accounts of the story. I, for example, met some Russian refugees from Chechnya in the Urals. Personally, I have no reasons not to believe to their stories involving Chechens dismembering, skinning, enslaving people of other ethnicities. I quoted some of them here, but Robert dismisses them as “blood libel” against the Chechens invented by, no less, the Russian FSB.

    • Which locals would that be Bob, the Republican terrorists?
      The ones that support slicing girls faces for dating someone from the other community?

      The PIRA was responsible for the overwhelming majority of deaths in Northern Ireland, particulalry its campaign of assassinations and summary executions, it was and is also a major player in the drugs trade and other organised crime.

      Also note that the overwhelming majority of deaths in Northern Ireland were security personell such as the RUC and British military personell, the British tended to arrest IRA members rather than kill them (another difference between a civilised state and a Russian one), and let us not forget the IRA murder of schoolkids at Enniskillen.

      Compared to how Russia has behaved in all its recent imperialist campaigns, the British operation in Northern Ireland was remarkable in its restraint.

      So Bob, get an education laddie, as usual you show your lack of education.

      BTW, I am Irish Catholic by ancestry.

      • Not “overwhelming majority”, but a great part. Some third of all deaths in the conflict were the British in uniform (not counting all the civil servants, real and perceived secret agents and informants, and such), in any case many more then the Irish Republican paramilitary deaths.

        Some Irish paramilitary prisoners die when they did a hunger strike, and it’s supposedly outragous. But in Chechnya, even civilians who were not prisoners, nor even refugees (just sitting in the ruins of their homes), and of all nationalities, were starving and with no medical aid, in a huge humanitarian crisis, and with no foreign humanitarian aid missions and convoys (Doctors Without Borders, Action Against Hunger, Polish Humanitarian Organisation, Danish Refugee Council, etc – UNCHR did not even really try and the Red Cross/Crescent bailed out because of lack of security) they would die off. Just like in Bosnia. But, somehow, Sarajevo was a great tragedy and a household name worldwide, but Grozny was not, even as it’s very possible more people died in Chechnya than in Bosnia (despite a smaller population) and the sheer destruction was much greater too.

        Oh, and no one even really counted the deaths. (In Bosnia they counted, and it’s at least 97,207 victims of direct violence, and possibly up to 10,000 more.)

        • And these strikes of the spoiled Irish paramilitary prisoners: “the dispute escalated into the dirty protest, where prisoners refused to leave their cells to wash and covered the walls of their cells with excrement”. Tell me, is this a comedy?

          You know where the Russians kept prisoners (mostly rounded up civilians, and where they held the abducted Politkovskaya too, and even their own fellow troops to punish them) in the field “filtration points”? In the pits dig in ground, often filled with water, where the prisoners were defecating because they had no other choice.

          Here’s a sample article about the general situation in 2001, during “the peacetime” (well, there was never any war officially, and not even a martial law was declared there by Moscow except briefly in 1992), and the international (lack of) response:
          http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2001/jul/19/chechnya.jonathansteele
          Sounds a lot like Northern Ireland, right?

  5. Russian nationalist

    To clarify the question about Russia’s share in the ECHR case load:
    “More than half of the judgments delivered by the Court concerned four of the Council of Europe’s 47 member States: Turkey (2,295 judgments), Italy (2,021 judgments), Russia (862 judgments) and France (773 judgments).” (on 1 January 2010)
    http://www.echr.coe.int/NR/rdonlyres/ACD46A0F-615A-48B9-89D6-8480AFCC29FD/0/FactsAndFigures_EN.pdf (p.5)

    • But remember, those judgments against France and Italy (not sure about Turkey) have accumulated since 1959, and Russia has not become a member until 1990s.

      • Russian nationalist

        Exactly! But don’t forget that Russia joined the CE in 1998 when the court (after the ratification of the Protocol 11 to the Convention), which previously had been a part-time irregular mechanism with cumbersome rules, turned into effective regular international court.

  6. Hey Andrew.
    Don’t call me laddie, feinien scumbag.

  7. Oh Andrew.
    Are you one of these Irish Americans whose ancestors (you Americans love that stuff) gave funds to the provos via NORAID?
    Seems there were quite a lot of you who did. So as a Brit I get quite irate when Irish-Americans many of whom couldn’t find it on a map let alone have been there start to talk to me about the troubles…

    • No “Bob” not a “fenian” at all you pommy tosser, but a New Zealander of Irish extraction, and loyalist Irish catholic extraction at that.

      You should get an education Bob, you seem to be quite stupid. If you think I am “fenian” based on what I wrote, no wonder there is no empire any more.

      So pommy boy, learn to read.

    • And you really need to get an education on the troubles dumbo, or are you a Labour voter?

      That would explain everything.

    • Oh and have you ever served the Crown Bob?

      I have, so go KMRIA :-)

  8. Ah a New Zealander. Not quite a big a chip as your aussie cousins but still I’m assuming quite large.
    I’m just enjoying winding you up with a similar kind of bile as I see spouted here towards Russia and Russians. You don’t like it do you? Especially as some or a lot of the comments I see here are just as ridiculous as mine. I’m not even pretending to dress it up in some pseudo intellectual reasoning.

    Thing is I lived in Russia for a good few years. Studied it quite in depth too given it was my degree. I can quite easily be critical of the Russian political system, quite open to its vices and problems. So much so I have some interesting arguments with my wife who is Russian. What I see here though are sweeping generalisations of the kind I see here towards Russia and also a lack of intelligent debate. It seems to boil down to Russia = Dicatorial Political System = Thick People. The way La Russophobe portrays them as untermenshcen (apologies for spelling) irks me.

  9. Russian nationalist, Poland is doing OK because Poland got rid of the plage called the russians – after 40 years of colonial russian rules it will take a while to catch up with the West – but Poland is doing very well indeed and russia, of course, hates it…You being ‘russian nationalist’ must feel bad to see russia humiliating itself on a daily basis, By the way, the Moscow olympics in 1980 were the final and deadly blow to the soviet union – I wonder what will happen after the sochi olympics???

    • Russian nationalist

      MCCUSA, I am really glad that you are satisfied at last. I can’t get how you will survive without Russians to whine about LOL. It’s 20 years already has passed after the USSR and you still can’t come to terms that mother-Russia is not in charge of you anymore. LOL

  10. Manfred Steifschwanz

    Don’t worry about the Pshek’s well-being, Russian nationalist. He was brought up in a Catholic boarding school and has consequently undergone utter mental depletion. The rest of his personality amounts to ordinary Western imbecility and depravity. As a Russian nationalist, you should most definitely NOT try to curry any favour with the West. Your country is attacked/abused here because the ruling Western elite cannot run Russia as its fiefdom, mind you.

    • Russian nationalist

      Manfred, Russian nationalism doesn’t mean confrontation with European civilization because Russia itself is a part of the European civilization. Russian history, Russian culture are genetically related to the general European cultural and historical trends. To establish Russian national state we must cut off Asiatic political traditions imposed on the ethnic Russians by non-Russian Asiatic “imperialists”.

      • Manfred Steifschwanz

        As I wrote on April 9th:

        With “Europeans” comprising utter garbage such as mccusa, being a European seems appreciably less attractive an option, mind my words.

        • Russian nationalist

          Manfred I understand you have a personal issue with mccusa here. He doesn’t like Russians. So what? The French don’t like the Germans but it doesn’t mean that both nations are not Europeans. We are inevitably connected by our common cultural background. Even mccusa’s hostility to the Russians is a proof of that.
          By the way, have you noticed that mccusa speaks very decent Russian. Might be his hostility caused by his school experience with the Russian grammar cases. LOL

          • Rn.

            Find your comments of interest. The only thing that has me curious is how soon will the Putin GOON’s catch up with you and silence you for having the audacity to write all those bad things about his “paradiso”???

            By the way your “The French don’t like the Germans” has me intrigued. Be good enough to tell who in the hell likes the ‘frogs’ i.e. the obnoxious French. And please exclude the obvious example of the Russians.

            • Manfred Steifschwanz

              Boredan, mon cher ami: Quant à la popularité de la France et des Français à l’étranger, elle est assez palpable en Espagne, en Portugal et en Italie :-)

              Si je ne me trompe pas, tu nous avais dit auparavant ici que tu étais un “globetrotter” authentique. Alors, comment se fait-il que tu n’as pas découvert ces pétites choses?

              Je t’embrasse,

              /Manfred

              • Russian nationalist

                У каждого могут быть свои предпочтения. Мне вот нравятся немецкие сосиски и пиво. А ещё мне нравится Лев Толстой, который половину “Войны и мира” написал по-французски. :)

                • Manfred Steifschwanz

                  Говоря о сосисок, у Манфреда Штайфшванца есть огромный член — очаровывает геев и девочек по всей Европе!

                  • Russian nationalist

                    Искренне рад за Манфреда. Но кроме члена у него проблемы со склонениями существительных в русском языке. Надо: “говоря о сосискАХ”. Возникает справедливое подозрение, что Манфред нерусский тролль.

                    • Manfred Steifschwanz

                      Tы прав, русский националист — я швед. Что касается русской грамматики, мои главные трудности состоят из предлоги и глаголы. Спасибо тебе за твою помощь :-)

                  • Russian nationalist

                    Всегда готов помочь наследникам славного Карла ХII. Можем продолжить: “…мои главные трудности состоят из предлогов и глаголов” (родительный падеж)/”мои главные трудности это предлоги и глаголы” (именительный падеж).
                    Забавляешься здесь?

            • Russian nationalist

              Hi Bohdan,
              In many respects Putin’s regime is authoritarian. But this authoritarianism is like a parody, caricature to proper police states. Sometimes this “caricature” kills people but does it in a secret way. That is why there are a lot of people in Russia who openly express their dissatisfaction with the current regime. It’s “la Russophobe” who believes that Boris Nemtsov and “hero journalist” Latynina are the only opposition to Putin.
              As for French-German stuff, you know, I personally feel myself quite comfortable in any European country. We are people of the same cultural tradition – Germans, British, French, Polish, Ukrainians, Russians.

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