Can the Left Weaponize Russia?

Of course it can….anything can be weaponized in politics……

The Dems need a plan…..could they do what the Right did in the 50’s……weaponize Russia to gain support and in turn gain voters?

The best weapon the GOP had 60 years ago was their hared of the USSR….their self-induced fear help them control the foreign policy that still hangs on to this day…..

The Dems had their asses handed to them in the elections of 2016….they need a plan….they need a plan that the American people will embrace and in doing so gain them votes…that magic wand that leads to power…..

Below link is a good look back at the days of the communism hysteria…..

Anti-Soviet sentiment used to be a powerful political unifier for the right. Fifty years later, some liberals think they can replicate that model.

With every passing week, President Donald Trump has furnished Democrats and a growing number of establishment Republicans with reason to worry that there is more to the president’s relationship with Russia than meets the eye. There is his ingratiating posture toward Vladimir Putin. His campaign’s machinations to change the Republican Party plank on Ukraine. Ominous threats to undermine NATO. The mysterious opposition research dossier suggesting that Moscow may possess “kompromat” of both a personal and business nature on Trump, though Moscow denies it. And now, a Fox interview in which the president drew moral equivalency between the Russian government, which imprisons and assassinates both dissidents and journalists, and the government in Washington.

Source: Can the Left Weaponize Russia? – POLITICO Magazine

The Dems will need all the ammo they can muster if they are to reverse the trend they created for themselves in the last decade…..

One More Putin Foe

There seems to be a trend occurring around Russia’s Putin…..opponents seem to die off all around him….

It was that ex-spy in London that was poisoned in his tea….then there are the homegrown opponents that die in Russia….and the opponent in DC that was found dead in his apartment…..and we can add another one to the ever growing list……

For the second time in less than two years, Russian dissident Vladimir Kara-Murza was suddenly stricken ill and hospitalized in Moscow this morning. At this moment, he is unconscious, in intensive care, and on life support. His symptoms today are identical to those of two years ago when he was hospitalized under highly suspicious circumstances with many believing he had been poisoned. His wife and three children live in a suburb of Washington D.C.

Vladimir is perhaps the most authentic, articulate, informed, reasoned, effective, and persistent advocate for reform and decency in Russia. He has carried his message to audiences in Washington, and across Europe and his own country. He played a key role in the passage of the Magnitsky Act which restricts travel to the US and freezes the assets of designated Russians whose violations of human rights standards have been especially pronounced. Vladimir is also courageous beyond words. After his friend and colleague Boris Nemtsov was murdered outside the Kremlin almost exactly two years ago, Vladimir chose to return to Moscow to advocate for reform in Russia. He did so at considerable personal risk and sacrifice.

Source: Vladimir Kara-Murza, Opposition Leader, on Life Support in Moscow Hospital | World Affairs Journal

Seems this is a typical reaction by a Russian leader…..can you recall the purges that Stalin was famous for?  The old saying comes to mind…”slow and steady”….

Why Not Go To War?

I recently did a piece where I gave some props to McCain and his ally Graham…..they were showing their grit by standing up to the emperor on some issues…..and then when I was starting to like these guys a bit, after years if bad mouthing them, they just could not let some things go….

It appears the McCain and his crony Graham recently made a “fact finding” mission to the Ukraine and while there had to thump their chest like crazed primates….

The United States has never been particularly supportive of efforts by European nations to negotiate a ceasefire in Eastern Ukraine. Perennial hawks Sen. Lindsey Graham (R – SC) and John McCain (R – AZ) took things a step further, however, visiting Ukrainian troops on the frontlines and openly urging new military offensives against the ethnic Russian rebels.

Addressing the troops alongside Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, Graham declared 2017 to be “the year of offensive” against Russia, insisting Ukraine’s fight was America’s fight, and that he was determined to make the Russian “pay a heavier price.”

Sen. McCain concurred, insisting that the US could not allow Russian President Vladimir Putin to “succeed” in Ukraine, because if he does he’s liable to also “succeed” in other countries around the world.  (Domino Theory again?)

Graham is also said to be pushing a draft resolution aiming to impose a new round of sanctions against Russia for “trying to interfere with our election.” He insisted he would “never be satisfied” until the US punishes the Russian government.

(antiwar.com)

Appears the Pres. Trump and McCain/Graham are not on the same page when it comes to Ukraine…..

White House officials say President Trump had a “very good call” with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko over the weekend, during which hew promised to work to restore peace along Ukraine’s eastern border with Russia, an area which has faced years of civil war.

According to a read-out of the call, Trump promised to work with Ukraine, Russia, and all other parties on the issue, with an eye toward restoring peace along the border. Trump and Poroshenko also discussed the possibility of meeting in the near future.

Is that our only answer to any situation….GO TO WAR?  Or is there a possibility for some sort of diplomacy? (that would be a pipe dream)……

Can You Remember Ukraine?

My main interest is that of conflicts around the world and one of them has fallen off the front page and by doing so then no one seems to care about the situation….

There has bee a ceasefire in place for almost 2 years so the interest of the world slipped on to something else…..but like most armed conflicts there is always more happening than we know…..

A quick rundown……

The war in eastern Ukraine that simmered quietly for months has erupted in a lethal bout of fighting in recent days. The violence, which killed at least eight Ukrainian soldiers and three on the pro-Russian side, shifted the front lines by only a few hundred yards in several spots, but potentially complicates American efforts to improve relations with Russia. – New York Times

Ukraine says one of its soldiers has been killed in the country’s east, where fighting between government forces and Russia-backed separatists has flared over the past four days. – Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty

Russian-backed forces in eastern Ukraine have launched an offensive to recapture a city on the border of the territory currently controlled by separatist groups, according to a U.S. diplomat. – Washington Examiner

Editorial: Could it have been just a coincidence that Russian-backed forces in Ukraine launched their biggest offensive in months the day after Vladi­mir Putin spoke by phone with President Trump? Somehow, we doubt it. Rather, the volleys of Grad rockets and heavy artillery that have been raining down on Ukrainian army positions since Sunday look a lot like a test of whether the new president will yield to pressure from Moscow. – Washington Post

Yet another crisis waiting to happen and the Trump team needs to focus on prevent it from becoming an all out war.

Another region that bears the need for study is the region that perplexed Clinton in the 90’s….the Balkans

Ethnic tensions are rising in Kosovo, setting the stage for an early test of U.S.-Russian relations under President Donald Trump in a Balkan country where U.S. troops keep the peace decades after a NATO air campaign ended Serb rule over the Albanian population. – Stars and Stripes

You see there is more happening in the world than protests…..

Gee, Why Is Russia So Paranoid?

There is much talk these days that Russia is just being paranoid….that NATO and the USA does not have any intentions of starting a new Cold War….

I had try to explain a little history of Russia to help my readers try to grasp their thinking….

Source: “A Paranoid Russia” – In Saner Thought

Then the most recent build up in Eastern Europe of US armor……

Source: The Return of “Heavy Metal” | Ace News Room

Then more recent news of US troops moved to the Russia border in Norway…..

Tensions are already on the rise between the US and Russia over massive US deployments in Germany for a training exercise marching east toward Russia. A force of US Marines are now heading to Trondheim, Norway for another deployment along the Russian border.

Russia is none too happy, again, both annoyed at the US for deployment yet more troops along their border, and at Norway, who promised not to host any foreign troops on the Russian border when they became part of NATO. Norway insists this is just a temporary deployment and doesn’t count.

If the roles were reversed what would the US be saying and/or feeling about all the build-up?

Modernizing ‘The Manchurian Candidate’

Has anyone here seen the Manchurian Candidate….the original not the cheesy re-make…?  You should watch it then this post would make more sense than just a rant…..

We all have heard the back and forth by all sides about the “hacking” in the last election…..Trump is saying not so fast more info is needed but one of his advisers, James Woolsey, does not totally agree…..

Senior Donald Trump adviser James Woolsey says that despite the president-elect’s skepticism, he believes Russian hackers really were involved in election-related skulduggery. “I think the Russians were in there, but it doesn’t mean other people weren’t, too,” Woolsey tells CNN. “It’s often not foolproof to say who it is because it is possible and sometimes easy to hide your tracks. There’s lots of tricks.” Woolsey, who served in both Democratic and Republican administrations and was CIA director under Bill Clinton, admitted that Trump is an ” expert in weaving around” issues like this, and there is a chance that he could just be playing the media with claims to “know things that other people don’t know” about the hacking allegations.

The original movie is about a “sleeper” agent planted in the country that will effect the election…..

There are some similarities in life as in the movie….the closeness of some to Russia and the possibility of some sort of “coup” to put Russia in charge…..

An interesting article….(please I do not agree but it is a interesting point….that is if one takes the time to read it)…..

Donald Trump’s transition from U.S. President-elect to taking power recalls nothing so much as a forgotten Hollywood genre: the paranoid melodrama. Perhaps the greatest film of this type, “The Manchurian Candidate,” concerns a communist plot to use the brainwashed son of a leading right-wing family to upend the American political system. Given the fondness that Trump and so many of his appointees seem to have for Russian President Vladimir Putin, life may be about to imitate – if not exceed – art.

To be sure, the attraction for Putin that Trump and his picks for secretary of state and national security adviser ― Rex Tillerson and Michael Flynn ― share is not the result of brainwashing, unless you consider the love of money (and of the people who can funnel it to you) a form of brainwashing. Nonetheless, such Kremlinophilia is ― to resurrect a word redolent of Cold War paranoia ― decidedly un-American.

Source: Trump and ‘The Manchurian Candidate’ Are Too Similar for Comfort | The Huffington Post

There are just so many thoughts about what to expect and the possibilities after 20Jan17…..a day that will live in…… (you insert the term )…….

Is It Just Paranoia?

I apologize it seems that I am beating you about the brain with historical perspectives today….but it is a new year so why not learn something, right?

With all the stuff about Russia coming to the forefront…the hacking…the military build-up….the political rhetoric…..is there reason for them to be paranoid?

Keep in mind this is a historic perspective and not some endorsement of anything….just a short history lesson is all.

Russia has had two major invasion in history…..the first was Napoleon in 1812 and then in 1941 by Germany and each time the invaders came in through Poland and Central Europe….so at the end of WW2 Russia kept the invasion route under their control so it could not ever happen again.

Then the US…..Russia worried about the US and its new weapon, the A-bomb…..they, the US, had used it twice and would they use it again?  Yes they were worried about a possible invasion by the US.  Now you ask why would the US consider such a thing?

But first a little background…..I recently watched a History Channel program that was entitled “America’s First War on Communism”….it was a look at the Korean War.

Being a history nut I quickly sent an email to the Channel and then wrote a piece here on IST….I worked to dispel a misconception…that was not the first War on Communism…..

Source: America’s First War On Communism – In Saner Thought

That is correct the US sent troops into Russia in 1919 in support of the Whites, the loyalist that were fighting the Communists in the Civil War that ensued after the revolution…..but for more info read on……

It was a war few Americans knew about then or now. Orchestrated behind closed doors, inspired by panic, and plagued by futility, America’s military intervention in Siberia during the First World War continued long after the Armistice sent the doughboys in France home.President Woodrow Wilson considered the order to send American troops to Siberia, a region besieged by civil war, lawlessness, and murder, one of the most difficult decisions of his presidency. Despite Russia’s separate peace treaty with Germany ending the war on the Eastern Front early in 1918, Wilson hesitated to get involved in Russia’s civil war even at the Allies insistence. By Summer 1918 things changed. The mounting Japanese occupation of Siberia threatened American business interests in the East. Piles of Allied military goods amassing to over 600,000 tons of war materials laid vulnerable around the crowded city.[1] The plight of the stranded Czech Legion vulnerable to the merciless Red Army gave Wilson a much needed moral foundation for intervention. Intervention, Wilson realized, could be used later to pressure the Allies into adopting his ideas for a League of Nations.

Source: AEF Siberia

NATO is building up on Russia’s western border…I would say ….There is good reason for Russia to have these feelings of paranoia….as they say….old habits die hard..