Because we still have too many Nazis embedded in Canadian politics. They mostly hide within the Conservative party.
“The Canadian government also recently renewed funding for a detachment of 200 “advisors” to train Ukrainian militias, along with twenty-three million dollars—it is true a pittance by American standards—for “non-lethal” military aid, justified by Ms. Freeland to defend Ukrainian “democracy”. Truly, we live in a dystopian world where reality is turned on its head. Fascism is democracy; resistance to fascism is terrorism.”
Canada has a reputation for being a relatively progressive state with universal, single-payer health care, various other social benefits, and strict gun laws, similar to many European countries but quite unlike the United States. It has managed to stay out of some American wars, for example, Vietnam and Iraq, portrayed itself as a neutral “peace keeper”, pursuing a so-called policy of “multilateralism” and attempting from time to time to keep a little independent distance from the United States.
Behind this veneer of respectability lies a not so attractive reality of elite inattention to the defence of Canadian independence from the United States and intolerance toward the political and syndicalist left. Police repression against communist and left-wing unionists and other dissidents after World War I was widespread. Strong support for appeasement of Nazi Germany, overt or covert sympathy for fascism, especially in Québec, and hatred of the Soviet Union were widespread in Canada during the 1930s. The Liberal prime minister, William Lyon Mackenzie King, hobnobbed with Nazi notables including Adolf Hitler, and thought that his British counterpart Neville Chamberlain had not gone far enough in appeasing Hitlerite Germany. Mackenzie King and many others of the Canadian elite saw communism as a greater threat to Canada than fascism. As in Europe, the Canadian elite—Liberal or Conservative did not matter—was worried by the Spanish civil war (1936-1939). In Québec French public opinion under the influence of the Catholic Church hoped for fascist victory and the eradication of communism. In 1937 a Papal encyclical whipped up the Red Scare amongst French Canadian Catholics. Rejection of Soviet offers of collective security against Hitler was the obverse side of appeasement. The fear of victory over Nazi Germany in alliance with the USSR was greater than the fear of defeat against fascism. Such thoughts were either openly expressed over dinner at the local gentleman’s club or kept more discrete by people who did not want to reveal the extent of their sympathy for fascism.
The Liberal prime minister, William Lyon Mackenzie King, hobnobbed with Nazi notables including Adolf Hitler, and thought that his British counterpart Neville Chamberlain had not gone far enough in appeasing Hitlerite Germany
Even after the Nazi invasion of the USSR in June 1941, and the formation of the Grand Alliance against the Axis, there was strong reticence amongst the governing elite in Canada toward the Soviet Union. It was a shotgun marriage, a momentary arrangement with an undesirable partner, necessitated by the over-riding threat of the Nazi Wehrmacht.
“If Hitler invaded Hell,” Winston Churchill famously remarked, “I would make at least a favourable reference to the devil in the House of Commons.” Once Hitler was beaten, however, it would be back to business as usual. The Grand Alliance was a “truce”, as some of my students have proposed to me, in a longer cold war between the west and the USSR. This struggle began in November 1917 when the Bolsheviks seized power in Petrograd; it resumed after 1945 when the “truce”, or if you like, the Grand Alliance, came to a sudden end.
This was no more evident than in Canada where elite hatred of communism was a homegrown commodity and not simply an American imitation. So it should hardly be a surprise that after 1945 the Canadian government – Mackenzie King was still prime minister – should open its doors to the immigration of approximately 34,000 “displaced persons”, including thousands of Ukrainian fascists and Nazi collaborators, responsible for heinous war crimes in the Ukraine and Poland. These were veterans of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), the Waffen SS Galicia and the Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN), all collaborators of Nazi Germany during World War II.
Chrystia Freeland, the current Canadian minister for external affairs
The most notorious of the Nazi collaborators who immigrated to Canada was Mykhailo Chomiak, a mid-level Nazi operative in Poland, who came under US protection at the end of the war and eventually made his way to Canada where he settled in Alberta. Had he been captured by the Red Army, he would quite likely have been hanged for collaboration with the enemy. In Canada however he prospered as a farmer. His grand-daughter is the “Ukrainian-Canadian” Chrystia Freeland, the present minister for external affairs. She is a well-known Russophobe, persona non grata in the Russian Federation, who long claimed her grandfather was a “victim” of World War II. Her claims to this effect have been demonstrated to be untrue by the Australian born journalist John Helmer, amongst many others.
In 1940 the Liberal government facilitated the creation of the Canadian Ukrainian Congress (UCC), one of many organisations used to fight or marginalise the left in Canada, in this case amongst Canadian Ukrainians. The UCC is still around and appears to dominate the Ukrainian-Canadian community. Approximately 1.4 million people living in Canada claim full or partial Ukrainian descent though generally the latter. Most “Ukrainian-Canadians” were born in Canada; well more than half live in the western provinces. The vast majority has certainly never set foot in the Ukraine. It is this constituency on which the UCC depends to pursue its political agenda in Ottawa.
The Canadian Ukrainian Congress (UCC) president Paul Grod
After the coup d’état in Kiev in February 2014 the UCC lobbied the then Conservative government under Stephen Harper to support the Ukrainian “regime change” operation which had been conducted by the United States and European Union. The UCC president, Paul Grod, took the lead in obtaining various advantages from the Harper government, including arms for the putschist regime in Kiev. It survives only through massive EU and US direct or indirect financial/political support and through armed backing from fascist militias who repress dissent by force and intimidation. Mr. Grod claims that Russia is pursuing a policy of “aggression” against the Ukraine. If that were true, the putschists in Kiev would have long ago disappeared. The Harper government allowed fund raising for Pravyi Sektor, a Ukrainian fascist paramilitary group, through two organisations in Canada including the UCC, and even accorded “charitable status” to one of them to facilitate their fund raising and arms buying. Harper also sent military “advisors” to train Ukrainian forces, the backbone of which are fascist militias. The Trudeau government has continued that policy. “Canada should prepare for Russian attempts to destabilize its democracy,” according to Minister Freeland: “Ukraine is a very important partner to Canada and we will continue to support its efforts for democracy and economic growth.” For a regime that celebrates violence and anti-Russian racism, represses political opposition, burns books, and outlaws the Russian language, “democracy” is an Orwellian portrayal of actual realities in the Ukraine. Nevertheless, late last year the Canadian government approved the sale of arms to Kiev and a so-called Magnitsky law imposing sanctions on Russian nationals.
The Harper government allowed fund raising for Pravyi Sektor, a Ukrainian fascist paramilitary group
There is no political opposition in the House of Commons to these policies. Even the New Democratic Party (NDP), that burnt out shell of Canadian social democracy, supported the Harper government, at the behest of Mr. Grod, a Ukrainian lobbyist who knows his way around Ottawa. In 2015 the UCC put a list of questions to party leaders, one of which was the following: “Does your party support listing the Luhansk People’s Republic and the Donetsk People’s Republic as terrorist organizations?” The Lugansk and Donetsk republics are of course anti-fascist resistance movements that emerged in reaction to the violent coup d’état in Kiev. They are most certainly not “terrorist” organisations, although they are subjected to daily bombardments against civilian areas by Kiev putschist forces. Nevertheless, the then NDP leader, Thomas Mulcair, who would have agreed to almost anything to win power, answered in the affirmative. This must have been a moment of dismay for Canadians who still harboured illusions about the NDP as a progressive alternative to the Liberal and Conservative parties. How could it support a US/EU installed putschist regime which governs by intimidation and violence? In fact, it was a Conservative electoral strategy to obtain the votes of people of Ukrainian and East European descent by backing putschist Kiev and denouncing Russia. Mulcair was trying to outflank Harper on his right, but that did not work for he himself was outflanked on his left.
Some Canadians harboured illusions about the NDP as a progressive alternative to the Liberal and Conservative parties
In the 2015 federal elections the Liberals under Justin Trudeau, outwitted poor Mr. Mulcair and won the elections. The NDP suffered heavy electoral losses. Mulcair looked like someone who had made a Faustian bargain for nothing in return, and he lost a bid to remain as party leader. The Liberals campaigned on re-establishing better relations with the Russian Federation, but that promise did not hold up. The minister for external affairs, Stéphane Dion, tried to move forward on that line, but appears to have been stabbed in the back by Mr. Trudeau, with Ms. Freeland guiding his hand in the fatal blow. In early 2017 Dion was sacked and Freeland replaced him. That was the end of the Liberal promise to improve relations with the Russian government. Since then, under Freeland, Russian-Canadian relations have worsened.
The influential Mr. Grod appears to keep the Canadian government in his hip pocket. There are photographs of him side by side with Mr. Harper and then with Mr. Trudeau, with Ms. Freeland on his left. Mr. Grod has been a great success in backing putschist Kiev. Last summer Mr. Trudeau even issued a traditional Ukrainian fascist salute, “SlavaUkraini!”, to celebrate the anniversary of Ukrainian independence. The prime minister is a great believer in identity politics.
The influential Mr. Grod appears to keep the Canadian government in his hip pocket
The latest gesture of the Canadian government is to approve $1.4 million as a three year grant to promote a “Holodomor National Awareness Tour”. Ukrainian “nationalists” summon up the memory of the “Holodomor”, a famine in the Ukraine in 1932-1933, deliberately launched by Stalin, they say, in order to emphasise their victimisation by Russia. According to the latest Stalin biographer, Steven Kotkin, there was indeed a famine in the USSR that affected various parts of the country, the Ukraine amongst other regions. Kazakhstan, not the Ukraine suffered most. Between five and seven million people died. Ten millions starved. “Nonetheless, the famine was not intentional. It resulted from Stalin’s policies of forced collectivization…,” Kotkin writes, himself no advocate of the Soviet Union. Compulsion, peasant rebellion, bungling, mismanagement, drought, locust infestations, not targeting ethnicities, led to the catastrophe. “Similarly, there was no ‘Ukrainian’ famine,” according to Kotkin, “the famine was [a] Soviet[-wide disaster]” (Stalin, 2017, vol. 2, pp. 127-29). So the Liberal government is spending public funds to perpetuate a politically motivated myth to drum up hatred of Russia and to support putschist Kiev.
Identity politics and Canadian multiculturalism are now invoked to defend Ukrainian fascism celebrated in the streets of Kiev with torchlight parades and fascist symbols, remembering and celebrating Nazi collaborators and collaboration during World War II
The Canadian government also recently renewed funding for a detachment of 200 “advisors” to train Ukrainian militias, along with twenty-three million dollars—it is true a pittance by American standards—for “non-lethal” military aid, justified by Ms. Freeland to defend Ukrainian “democracy”. Truly, we live in a dystopian world where reality is turned on its head. Fascism is democracy; resistance to fascism is terrorism. Identity politics and Canadian multiculturalism are now invoked to defend Ukrainian fascism celebrated in the streets of Kiev with torchlight parades and fascist symbols, remembering and celebrating Nazi collaborators and collaboration during World War II. “Any country sending representatives to Russia’s celebration of the 70th anniversary of their victory against Adolf Hitler,” warned putschist Kiev in April 2015, “will be blacklisted by Ukraine.”
* * *
“The further a society drifts from the truth,” George Orwell once said, “the more it will hate those that speak it.”
Well, here is one truth that Mr. Trudeau and Ms. Freeland will not want to hear, hate it or not: 42,000 Canadian soldiers, not to mention 27 million Soviet citizens, died during the war against the Axis. Memories must be fading, for now we have come to this pass, where our government is supporting a violent, racist regime in Kiev directly descended from that very enemy against which Canada and its allies fought during World War II.
Senior Lecturer in Chemistry, University of Birmingham
March 8, 2018
The former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter are in a critical condition in a hospital in Salisbury, UK, following exposure to an unknown nerve agent. Several locations in the city have been cordoned off and decontaminated since the pair were found unconscious on a park bench on March 5. But what are nerve agents exactly and how do they affect the body?
The first nerve agents were invented by accident in the 1930s when researchers were trying to make cheaper and better alternatives to nicotine as insecticides. In their search, German scientists made two organic compounds containing phosphorus that were very effective at killing insect pests. However, they soon discovered that, even in minuscule amounts, the substances caused distressing symptoms in humans exposed to them.
The two substances – too toxic to be used as commercial insecticides in agriculture – became known as tabun and sarin. The research was handed over to the Wehrmacht (the Nazi armed forces), which evaluated them as weapons and began constructing plants to manufacture them. The sarin plant was not operational by the time the Third Reich collapsed, but fell in to the hands of Soviet forces that overran Poland and Germany.
Pesticide research continued after the war and the molecule known as VX was first made in an Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI) laboratory in the UK in 1952. It again proved too toxic to be used in agriculture and it was passed to the UK’s Porton Down Chemical Weapons Research Centre, and subsequently to the US government, when the UK renounced chemical weapons. Its destructive power became clear on March 13, 1968. Somehow, the substance escaped from the army’s chemical weapons proving ground and killed over 3,000 sheep grazing 27 miles away in the Skull Valley area of Utah.
Since then, other nerve agents have been developed, but much less is known about them, although they are thought to work in broadly the same way. Unlike street drugs, nerve agents cannot be made in your kitchen or garden shed, on account of their toxicity, even in tiny amounts. Synthesis of nerve agents requires a specialist laboratory, with fume cupboards.
Nerve agents were not thought to have been deployed until the 1980s. Saddam Hussein’s Iraqi forces are understood to have used sarin during the Iran-Iraq war, notably against Kurdish citizens in Halabja in March 1988, leaving an estimated 5,000 dead.
On March 20, 1995, members of the Japanese Aum Shinrikyo cult used umbrellas with sharpened tips to puncture plastic bags and boxes containing sarin while they were travelling on the Tokyo subway system. Fortunately, the sarin used was impure, otherwise the casualty list would have been much longer. As it was, 13 people died and several thousands got sick.
Although there were claims that VX was used during the Iran-Iraq war, until recently, the only known human fatality caused by VX occurred when two members of the Aum Shinrikyo cult used VX to assassinate a former member of their sect in Osaka in 1994.
Two young women, an Indonesian and a Malaysian, are currently on trial in Malaysia, charged with killing Kim Jong-nam, the half brother of Kim Jong-un, North Korea’s leader, allegedly by smearing VX nerve agent across his face in an airport in Kuala Lumpur.
Nerve agents can be absorbed through inhalation or skin contact. In fact, when the Nazis were building their first nerve agent plant, workers wearing protective suits died in agony when nerve agent got through gaps in their suits.
Unlike traditional poisons, nerve agents don’t need to be added to food and drink to be effective. They are quite volatile, colourless liquids (except VX, said to resemble engine oil). The concentration in the vapour at room temperature is lethal. The symptoms of poisoning come on quickly, and include chest tightening, difficulty in breathing, and very likely asphyxiation. Associated symptoms include vomiting and massive incontinence. Victims of the Tokyo subway attack were reported to be bringing up blood. Kim Jong-nam died in less than 20 minutes. Eventually, you die either through asphyxiation or cardiac arrest.
The chemicals work by disrupting the central nervous system. The body uses a molecule called acetylcholine to send messages between cells – when an acetylcholine molecule “arrives”, it causes an electrical impulse to be sent. The body constantly has to remove those acetylcholine molecules from the receptors, otherwise there would be a dangerous build-up. It uses an enzyme called acetylcholinesterase (AChE) to do that. However, a nerve agent stops acetylcholinesterase from doing its job.
Antidotes do exist, one being atropine, but have to be administered quickly, otherwise the effect of the nerve agent cannot be reversed. Some antidotes can be administered as prophylactics to troops about to go into battle, if there is a risk of nerve agents being employed. This is obviously a real problem in a civilian situation, where there is no expectation of encountering these chemicals.
We do not yet know which kind of nerve agent poisoned Skripal. While they all work in similar way, different approaches may be needed for decontamination. To decontaminate streets and other hard surfaces, you can use water to flush it out – making sure to use enough to properly dilute the chemical. This works well for the more volatile sarin, which tends to evaporate easily or slowly get broken down by moisture. However, other substances, such as VX, are less volatile and reactive. In this case, bleach and alkali can be used to break the molecules down. In a situation where we don’t know which has been used, a mix of water and bleach may be the best approach.
As more details emerge from the case, we’ll know more about the precise substance used and how it should be tackled. Either way, nerve agents are horrendously lethal and chemical warfare is an obscene use of chemicals.
A new anti-fascist website tracks the location and activities of people affiliated with Daily Stormer, one of the largest neo-Nazi websites in the United States.
Launched on January 28, FashMaps is an activist-run initiative that seeks to inform local communities about the presence and gatherings of neo-Nazis in their area.
Simon, a systems analyst who spoke to Al Jazeera with a pseudonym, launched FashMaps for the purpose of “education and awareness”.
According to Simon, a four-person team uses fake accounts to monitor Daily Stormer forum discussions and pin down when and where they plan to hold events, which they often refer to as “book clubs” and “pool parties”.
“It is important to be aware of these groups because as they grow in numbers, they also grow in influence beyond their immediate circle,” he told Al Jazeera.
“When that influence creeps into positions where it has no business being – such as a public office, a school teacher, a police officer – it creates a serious threat to both the safety and civil rights of any person fascists see as less than themselves.”
At the time of its launch, FashMaps had around 700 pins signifying Daily Stormer meet-ups in cities and towns in almost every state across the US, and to a lesser degree, in Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia and Southeast Asia.
The far right has grown throughout the campaign and presidency of right-wing President Donald Trump, with groups proliferating across the country.
According to the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), an Alabama-based hate monitor, there were 917 “hate groups” in the US as of 2016.
Among those were 30 Ku Klux Klan chapters, 100 white nationalist organisations and 99 neo Nazi groups.
For Simon, choosing to put a focus on Daily Stormer was an easy decision.
“It was low-hanging fruit, and publicly available for others to see,” he said, explaining that the SPLC’s designation of SPLC as a hate group “saves us the trouble of having to make the case that the people who seek to organise on that particular forum actually subscribe, to some degree or another, to neo-Nazi ideologies”.
Daily Stormer, which was named after the German Nazi-era publication Der Sturmer, has been forced to hop from one web host to the next owing to growing public backlash in the wake of the deadly Charlottesville rally on August 12, 2017.
The website was founded in 2013 by Andrew Anglin, who is currently being sued by the SPLC and Tanya Gersh, a Jewish lawyer in Montana, for inspiring a storm of threats and harassment targeting Gersh in December 2016.
During the August rally in Charlottesville – dubbed “Unite the Right” – thousands of white supremacists, white nationalists and neo-Nazis converged on the Virginia city to demonstrate against plans to remove a Confederate monument.
Daily Stormer had been issuing marching orders to Unite the Right attendees in the days leading up to the demonstration.
Participants clashed with community members, anti-fascists and anti-racist activists throughout the day.
The demonstration culminated with James Alex Fields, who had been photographed earlier in the day marching with neo-Nazis, allegedly ploughing his car into a crowd, killing 32-year-old Heather Heyer and injuring dozens more.
Following the bloodshed, GoDaddy, the Daily Stormer’s web-hosting service, booted the neo-Nazi site over an article referring to the late Heyer as a “fat skank”.
|White supremacists clash with counterprotesters in Charlottesville [File: Joshua Roberts/Reuters]|
The Daily Stormer has since alternated between various web hosts and the dark web, struggling to maintain a stable online address.
The website’s founder, Anglin, and several of its contributors have also been expelled from Twitter, Facebook and other social media outlets as part of the post-Charlottesville backlash.
Spencer Sunshine, an associate fellow at Political Research Associates, explained that it is difficult to gauge the extent of harm the Daily Stormer’s inability to find a permanent online home has had on its influence.
“But it couldn’t have helped,” he told Al Jazeera, “and my general impression is that it’s harmed them. It’s never an advantage to lose a platform.”
The far-right movement has also become the target of doxxing, a practice in which activists conduct research and post online identities, addresses and other personal information of neo-Nazis and white supremacists.
For his part, Simon said that FashMaps does not post the locations of Daily Stormer meet-ups with the hopes of inspiring violence or harassment. All of the information Simon and his team publish is already publicly available.
“Identities and other identifying information are not posted anywhere on our site,” he noted. “And in reality, our map operates more like a ‘heat map’ than anything else… But we link to the source of our data as proof for our findings.”
He added: “By showing people they have a growing problem in their community, it can move them to become more involved in both speaking out against fascism and educating others to the problem in their community.”
Describing Daily Stormer and others like it as “propaganda”, Simon argued that there is a direct connection between street-level violence and the type of racist and white supremacist content posted on these websites.
“Propaganda reinforces beliefs that are intimately connected to deep-seated emotions of fear, anger, and hate,” he said.
“They can then resolve themselves to violence, which forces the eyes of the world to stop and actually look at them. And when that happens, they are given an amplified platform to spread their ideology even further,” Simon continued, adding that several Daily Stormer contributors were present at the Charlottesville rally last August.
Last month, the Anti Defamation League released a report that found 18 people were killed by white supremacists in 2017.
Simon concluded: “If citizens remain silent, fascism will win.”
SOURCE: Al Jazeera News
In the wake of the release of the Hollywood biopic on Churchill, ‘Darkest Hour,’ which is attracting rave reviews and features Gary Oldman as Churchill and Kristin Scott Thomas as his long-suffering wife Clementine, a raft of articles on the man and his legacy has been produced, confirming that his place in history remains the subject of dispute and conjecture over half a century after his death in 1965.
‘Darkest Hour’ focuses on the period of Churchill’s life for which he is most famous, when as prime minister he led Britain during the darkest period in its history after the military disaster of Dunkirk in May 1940.
Prior to his ascension to the role of the nation’s prime minister, Churchill had spent years on the backbenches as a lone Cassandra, warning of the threat posed by Hitler. As far back as 1932, after returning to Britain from a trip to Germany, he addressed the House of Commons thus: “All these bands of Teutonic youths, marching through the streets and roads of Germany, with the light of desire in their eyes to suffer for their Fatherland, are not looking for status. They are looking for weapons.”
At the end of May 1940, with Hitler’s panzers at the Channel ports of northern France, it would have come as small comfort to know that he had been proven right, and the bulk of a British political establishment in which Nazi sympathies ran deep throughout the 1930s was proven wrong.
The movie depicts the seminal struggle that took place between Churchill and those within his cabinet, led by the country’s Foreign Secretary Lord Halifax (played by Stephen Dillane), who believed there was no prospect of defeating the Germans militarily after Dunkirk, and who were adamant that the country should now seek terms with the Nazi dictator with the objective of saving the empire.
Churchill, as history reveals, saw things differently. This is powerfully depicted in the film when, exasperated at Halifax’s repeated urgings that the time had come to negotiate, he slams his desk and bellows, “When will the lesson be learned? You cannot reason with a tiger when your head is in its mouth!”
But, if 1940 was Churchill’s finest hour, there were countless hours of ignominy and mendacity in his life too, which his legion of fawning admirers have done their utmost to elide in favor of the legend.
Winston Spencer Churchill, born in 1874, was a scion of class privilege in a British society suffering the dead weight of aristocracy in the late 19th century. From a young age he was captivated by war and military life, developing a Nietzschean attachment to conflict as the testing ground of so-called manly virtues of courage, honor and discipline. He experienced war up close, when as a young army officer he saw combat in India, Sudan and on the Western Front during the First World War.
This sets him apart from contemporary British ‘war leaders,’ the likes of Tony Blair and David Cameron, who’ve sent British military forces into combat with the objective of establishing their own Churchillian legacy, resulting in disaster.
The ugly side of Churchill’s legacy is, as averred in the opening paragraph, the racism and imperialism that underpinned his worldview. His belief in racial hierarchy was outlined in the testimony he gave to the Peel Commission in 1937, which was established to investigate the 1936 Arab revolt against the influx of European Jewish settlers to Palestine with the connivance of the British.
When asked about the rights of the indigenous people in Palestine, Churchill refused to accept that they had any: “I do not admit, for example, that a great wrong has been done to the Red Indians of America or the Black people of Australia. I do not admit that wrong has been done to these people by the fact that a stronger race, a higher-grade race, a more worldly wise race, to put it in that way, has come in and taken their place.”
Years previously, as Britain’s secretary for war, Churchill had championed the use chemical weapons to put down rebellion in India and Iraq, writing in a memo, “I am strongly in favor of using poisoned gas against uncivilized tribes.” He was also responsible for the use of chemical weapons in Russia in 1919 with the aim, in conjunction with various other imperialist powers, of crushing the Russian Revolution.
During the Second World War, Churchill’s disdain for non-white European peoples was laid bare with his culpability in the deaths of three million men, women and children in the Bengal Famine of 1943.
Despite the starvation that had swept through this blighted province of India, Churchill ordered the diversion of desperately needed food from India to Europe. The fact that the 70,000 tons of food exported by the British from India in the first seven months of 1943 would have kept 400,000 people alive for a year is a chilling one. “I hate Indians,” Britain’s most venerated prime minister is said to have told one of his underlings. “They are a beastly people with a beastly religion.”
The veneration accorded Winston Churchill for his leadership of a country on its knees after the military disaster of Dunkirk in 1940 must be weighed in the balance against his disgusting racism and fanatical imperialism. And though Churchill’s defiance of Hitler and his Nazi war machine was important, it should be pointed out that Hitler’s military and strategic priority had never been war with Britain.
On the contrary, the fascist dictator was an admirer of the British empire, which he sought to emulate in Eastern Europe with the colonization and plunder of large swathes of Russia. As William L. Shirer writes in his landmark work, ‘The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich,’ after the fall of France, convinced that Britain would see sense and seek peace terms, Hitler expressed “his admiration of the British empire and [was] stressing the necessity for its existence. All he wanted from London, he said, was a free hand on the continent.”
The answer to the question of who Winston Churchill was can never be answered in a movie made with the purpose of reinforcing the reverence in which he is held in the West. Born with the blood of the English aristocracy running through his veins, he was a man for whom the world was divided between racially and culturally superior white European peoples and non-white Europeans fated to occupy the role of latter day Helots.
Ivan Maisky, Soviet ambassador to London between 1932 and 1943, captured the contradictions that defined Churchill, when in his voluminous diaries he noted, “For all his seriousness, Churchill is a rather amusing man!”
Churchill the great wartime leader or Churchill the racist and imperialist? The simple answer is that he was both.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.
A full original English version of controversial director and documentary filmmaker Oliver Stone’s “Ukraine on Fire” has finally been made available in the United States — after being blackballed for distribution in the US and Europe when released in 2016.
The film openly explores Ukraine’s 2014 Maidan, and in the process, uncovers some damning truths about the forces that propped up, and participated in, what eventually became a violent coup d’état that overthrew pro-Russian Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.
What appeared on western corporate media to be a popular uprising, was, in fact, nothing more than a well-scripted coup attempt meant to install a pro-Western government in Ukraine.
The Euromaidan was used by the West as an opportunity to pull Ukraine from the Russian sphere of influence and into a pro-Western economic and security paradigm under the guise of supporting democratic freedom and fighting corruption. This resulted in an internal conflict of identities within Ukrainian society.
Over the course of the three months that the protests took place, conflict solidarity was seen rising on both sides, as well as clear indications of mobilization by both groups, with sporadic episodes of violence and occupation. After months of Independence Square being occupied by protestors, the tragic events of February 20, 2014, which left over 70 dead, drastically changed the trajectory of the conflict and served as a conflict trigger event that would begin a multilevel action, with the massacre eventually leading to the deposing of the Yanukovych government.
While there is almost wholesale acceptance amongst the Western academics, media, and governments, that the mass killing of protestors was undertaken by Berkut special police and government snipers, due to this narrative’s promotion by the post-Yanukovych government, the evidence underpinning these conclusions is scant at best.
A detailed academic investigation by Ivan Katchanovski revealed that these events were actually a false flag operation, which was planned and operationalized with the intent of overthrowing the Yanukovych government by an alliance of ultra-nationalist organizations, such as Right Sector and Svoboda, and oligarchic parties, specifically Fatherland.
Additional evidence indicates that the U.S. was already actively planning the creation of a new Ukrainian government as evidenced by the leaked audio of a conversation between Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs at the U.S. Department of State Victoria Nuland and U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt.
After Yanukovych was deposed, the eastern regions of Ukraine, with large Russian speaking populations, refused to recognize this illegitimate government and requested federalization as to maintain a semblance of autonomy from the pro-Western regime that took power.
However, the new pro-West government refused and instead sent in military forces and neo-Nazi militias to occupy the region. This precipitated local resistance and Russian assistance to the local Ukrainian forces fighting to defend their home from the newly installed regime in Kiev.
In 2014 and 2015, when Ukrainian soldiers and pro-government neo-Nazi battalions were engaging Ukrainian separatists in fierce door-to-door, house-to-house fighting, Russia didn’t back down – instead, they escalated and forcefully stepped up support – as they supplied not only personnel, but tanks, supplies, and reinforcements to stop Kiev’s advances.
While these moves were framed as “Russian aggression” in the western corporate media, Russia was simply working to protect a large Russian speaking population in eastern Ukraine, that largely supported the Yushchenko government that had been the subject of a covert regime change operation.
Stone’s film was originally released in 2016, but unsurprisingly, he was unable to find any Western distribution – although a Russian dubbed version was available almost immediately and was aired on TV in Russia.
Indicative of the preferred method of keeping Americans subservient, English speaking audiences were simply denied access to the film altogether.
Ironically, a similar dynamic is playing out in western social media – the new medium for news distribution — as all opinions contrary to the corporate mainstream narrative are being censored using a combination of humans and computer algorithm to parse any dissent out of your social media news feeds.
The lesson is that an ignorant American population is more easily controlled and manipulated.
In an effort to break through the corporate-state imposed veil of ignorance, here is the full Oliver Stone exposé on the Euromaidan.
Of course, everyone is encouraged to purchase a copy to support Stone’s penetrating documentary.
The Russia-obsessed corporate media continues to peddle the narrative that Donald Trump has turned the United States into a client-state of Russia, even while he directly provokes the former Soviet Union by providing Russia’s foe — Urkaine — with the largest lethal assistance to a country on its border.
(MPN) — Despite the mainstream media’s insistence that U.S. President Donald Trump is some sort of compromised Russian lackey, the fact is that at the end of last year, his administration approved the largest U.S. commercial sale of lethal defensive weapons to Ukraine since 2014. This is a move that clearly infuriates and angers Russia, souring relations between the two countries even more so than they already had been under the Obama administration (and in various stages throughout Trump’s first year in office).
According to The Washington Post, administration officials confirmed that in December the State Department had approved a commercial license authorizing the export of Model M107A1 Sniper Systems, ammunition, and other associated parts and accessories to Ukraine — a package valued at $41.5 million.
At first, it was reported there had not yet been approval to export the heavier weaponry the Ukrainian government had been asking for, such as anti-tank missiles. However, by the end of December, reports began surfacing that the Trump administration was in fact going to provide 35 FGM-148 Javelin launchers and 210 anti-tank missiles. The Javelin is allegedly one of the most advanced anti-tank systems on the market. The total package is now valued at $47 million, and it wouldn’t be surprising if this figure continues to rise in the weeks to come.
Even under the 2014 Ukraine Freedom Support Act, the Obama administration never authorized large commercial or government arms sales, thereby making the recent announcement the first time that the U.S. will provide “lethal” weapons to the Ukraine military.
One senior congressional official said that he predicted this would be just the beginning, stating that the U.S. had “crossed the Rubicon; this is lethal weapons and I predict more will be coming,” according to the Post. Foreign Policy’s Michael Carpenter suggested that NATO countries should follow suit and also provide Ukraine with the arms it needs to counter the so-called threat of Russia. Considering that in September 2017 Russia proposed that UN peacekeepers be deployed to Ukraine, it should be clear that the U.S. is more bent on escalating this conflict than on resolving it.
Russia has already responded in kind, with Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov stating that the U.S. has become an accomplice in the war and that these developments make it impossible for Russia to remain “indifferent,” thereby forcing Russia to consider retaliation measures in response.
The U.S. is the world’s largest arms dealer. The U.S. arms so many countries so much of the time that most of us barely blink. And yet, even taking at face value America’s stated goals of spreading democracy and promoting human rights, the facts on the ground appear to run contrary to those ideals and the U.S. is well aware of these contradictions.
In reality, the United States intervened covertly in Ukraine in 2014 because Russia and Europe were growing far too close to each other for America’s comfort, with Russia supplying at least 30 percent of Europe’s gas supply. This was an issue particularly in relation to Germany’s growing fondness for Russian gas, as Germany is set to become the EU’s major player.
This is a deal-breaker for Washington, which would rather support known neo-Nazis and anti-Semites in order to install a right-wing government capable of opposing Russia as close to the Russian border as one can get.
On February 7, 2014, the BBC published a transcript of a bugged phone conversation between Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland and the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt. In this phone call, the U.S. officials were openly discussing who should form Ukraine’s government even before the president, Viktor Yanukovych, had been successfully ousted from power. In other words, the U.S. was actively doing to Russia’s neighbour what the corporate media and various elements of the intelligence communities have accused Russia of doing to the U.S. during the 2016 elections. As The Nation explained:
“In the intercepted phone call between U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland and U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt, the two were, as Russian expert Stephen Cohen put it to Democracy Now, ‘plotting a coup d’état against the elected president of Ukraine.’” [emphasis added]
“Good. I don’t think Klitsch [opposition leader Vitaly Klitschko] should go into the government. I don’t think it’s necessary, I don’t think it’s a good idea,” Nuland said in the call, as transcribed by the BBC.
“Yeah. I guess… in terms of him not going into the government, just let him stay out and do his political homework and stuff. I’m just thinking in terms of sort of the process moving ahead we want to keep the moderate democrats together. The problem is going to be Tyahnybok [Oleh Tyahnybok, an opposition leader] and his guys and I’m sure that’s part of what [President Viktor] Yanukovych is calculating on all this.”
“I think Yats [opposition leader Arseniy Yatseniuk] is the guy who’s got the economic experience, the governing experience. He’s the… what he needs is Klitsch and Tyahnybok on the outside. He needs to be talking to them four times a week, you know. I just think Klitsch going in… he’s going to be at that level working for Yatseniuk, it’s just not going to work.”
Oleh Tyahnybok, who had met with Senator John McCain one year prior, is the leader of the right-wing nationalist party Svoboda. When Svoboda was founded in 1995, the party had a swastika-like logo. As Business Insider explains, Tyahnybok is also a known anti-Semite:
“Tyahnybok himself was expelled from the Our Ukraine parliamentary faction in 2004 after giving a speech demanding that Ukrainians fight against a ‘Muscovite-Jewish mafia’ (he later clarified this by saying that he actually had Jewish friends and was only against to ‘a group of Jewish oligarchs who control Ukraine and against Jewish-Bolsheviks [in the past]’). In 2005 he wrote open letters demanding Ukraine do more to halt ‘criminal activities’ of ‘organized Jewry,’ and, even now, Svoboda openly calls for Ukrainian citizens to have their ethnicity printed onto their passports.”
When the protests broke out in Ukraine in 2014, the entire movement was hijacked by these racist elements.
“You’d never know from most of the reporting that far-right nationalists and fascists have been at the heart of the protests and attacks on government buildings,” reported Seumas Milne of The Guardian. Just days ago, thousands marched in Kiev to celebrate the anniversary of far-right nationalist Stepan Bandera’s birthday.
It is revealing that, when the U.S. decided to make a choice between a president they viewed as a Russian ally and the various ultra-right nationalist elements of Ukraine, Washington decided to help oust the former for the benefit of the latter.
Eventually, it was reported that a man named Petro Poroshenko would be taking up the reins after Yanukovych’s abdication. According to a cable obtained by WikiLeaks, Poroshenko previously worked as a mole for the U.S. State Department. The State Department even referred to Poroshenko as “our Ukrainian insider.”
For those who truly believe the U.S. protects and promotes democracy while challenging tyranny and dictatorships across the globe, the truth about Washington’s support for puppet regimes that fail to garner the support of their own people is even worse than any anti-imperialist commentator could ever have imagined. In March last year, Foreign Affairs reported that Poroshenko had an approval rating as low as 17 percent. In September last year, the Japan Times reported that his approval rating had dropped to a single digit. Some reportssay it was as low as 2 percent. October last year saw his approval rating grow to its highest in recent times, reaching a stratospheric 14 percent.
In other words, the Trump administration is actively propping up a failed administration in Europe, which does not have the support of 15 percent of its people. Even the far-right militias in Ukraine seem to have more support than the current government. Meanwhile, the U.S. has done nothing but its utmost to tear apart the respective democratically elected governments in Syria and Iran, both of which have far greater approval ratings than do Poroshenko and his administration.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said Washington’s recent decision to arm Ukraine will only make the conflict more deadly and suggested that Russia could be forced to respond. “[The U.S. is] not a mediator. It’s an accomplice in fueling the war,” Ryabkov said in a statement. Clearly, Russia has a vested interest in not seeing another NATO ally on its borders, capable of pointing American missiles in its face on a daily basis.
As The National Interest learned at the end of last year from recently declassified material, the U.S. did indeed break a promise at the end of the Cold War that NATO would expand “not one inch eastward.” George Washington University National Security Archives researchers Svetlana Savranskaya and Tom Blanton wrote in the National Security Archives:
“The [recently declassified] documents show that multiple national leaders were considering and rejecting Central and Eastern European membership in NATO as of early 1990 and through 1991. That discussions of NATO in the context of German unification negotiations in 1990 were not at all narrowly limited to the status of East German territory, and that subsequent Soviet and Russian complaints about being misled about NATO expansion, were founded in written contemporaneous memcons and telcons at the highest levels.”
The documents appear to confirm Russia’s assertion that Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev accepted the proposal for German reunification (which Gorbachev could have vetoed) only in reliance upon these assurances from its American counterparts that NATO would not expand into Eastern Europe. This history is reminiscent of how Russia was further duped out of using its veto power on a U.N. Security Council Resolution in Libya in 2011, after having received assurances that the coalition would not pursue regime change.
“I believe that your thoughts about the role of NATO in the current situation are the result of misunderstanding,” then-British Prime Minister John Major told Gorbachev, according to British Ambassador Rodric Braithwaite’s diary entry of March 5, 1991:
“We are not talking about strengthening of NATO. We are talking about the coordination of efforts that is already happening in Europe between NATO and the West European Union, which, as it is envisioned, would allow all members of the European Community to contribute to enhance [our] security.”
The documents also show that Russia had received these assurances from a number of other high-level officials. These officials included then-Secretary of State James Baker; President George H.W. Bush; West German Foreign Minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher; West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl; former CIA Director Robert Gates; French leader Francois Mitterrand; Margaret Thatcher; British Foreign Minister Douglas Hurd; and NATO Secretary-General Manfred Woerner.
Since that time, NATO has clearly expanded into Europe to the detriment of Russia. Since the end of the Cold War, NATO has grown to include the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland, Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia, Albania and Croatia, and Montenegro.
These developments are crucial because, when one is honest about America’s infamous history since World War II, it is clear that NATO exists as an entity only to counter and contain Russian influence. Its sole purpose is to oppose Russia at every corner and this is no secret even in the corporate media.
According to the Telegraph, NATO was formed in “Washington on 4th April, 1949 after the end of the Second World War, largely to block Soviet expansion into Europe.” This can be seen clearly in the complete rejection of the Soviets’ attempt to join NATO itself after Joseph Stalin’s death.
In a 2016 interview with The New Yorker, Douglas Lute, a former three-star general and then-U.S. Ambassador to NATO also patently admitted that:
“…NATO was founded on the premise of preventing an attack by the Soviet Union in Central Europe, where the U.S. would have to come to the aid of Europe … For the first forty years, NATO focused on its greatest risk—the threat that the Soviet Union posed to Western European security.”
At the time the unrest broke out in 2014, then-NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen’s comment that the proposed IMF-EU package presented to Ukraine would have been “a major boost for Euro-Atlantic security” suggested that NATO had set its sights on bringing Ukraine into the military alliance. In July of this year, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg met with Poroshenko in Kiev to further discuss this prospect, already pledging support to Ukraine on some level.
Now Ukraine’s bid to join NATO seems almost irrelevant, as the U.S. is formally involving itself deeper in the Ukrainian conflict and providing arms to a regime that has flirted with an approval rating lower than 10 percent, all the while provoking Russia to take further measures in response.
What could possibly go wrong?
Meanwhile, the Russia-obsessed corporate media continues to peddle the narrative that Donald Trump has turned the United States into a client-state of Russia, even while he directly provokes the former Soviet Union by providing lethal assistance to a country on its border. Not only is Trump maintaining an Obama-era policy, he is aggravating and converting Obama’s Ukraine policy into a much more dangerous one — ultimately aimed at provoking an aggressive response from Russia in the weeks or months to come.