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The Age of Putin: His 10 major accomplishments

© RIA Novosti
May 7, 2000, Putin's inauguration
Fifteen years ago, on March 26, 2000 Vladimir Putin was first elected to the post of the President of Russia. After coming to power in difficult times, he not only managed to keep the country united. 15 years later we can say: we have again become a superpower with a developed economy, industry, a powerful army and navy. And maybe not everything is smooth today. But then, 15 years ago, many people actually thought that the country was finished. However, Putin has managed to prove to the Russians and the whole world that we can not be easily defeated.

In fifteen years, thanks to the "swift tiger," as President Vladimir Putin is called by Chinese journalists, our country is once again referred to with respect.

We have decided to make our own rating of achievements of Vladimir Putin and his team in the last 15 years, helped by experts from Nightly Moscow:

1. THE SALVATION OF RUSSIA FROM DISINTEGRATION

Alexei Mukhin, political scientist, Director of the Center for Political Information:
Putin's role in preserving the unity of Russian Federation is primary. The change in the territorial-administrative division of Russia, the creation of seven federal districts allowed to first slow down and then reverse the processes that were leading to a direct collapse of Russia into several pseudo-state entities. Fortunately, Boris Yeltsin timely sensed what was happening, and resigned as President. And Vladimir Putin in time identified existing threats and took a number of preventive measures.

Comment: For a more inside view of this last accomplishment, the reintegration of Crimea, this documentary is a must-watch: Crimea: The Way Back Home - EN Subtitles - Full Documentary (VIDEO)


Network

Congress asked to tighten NSA spying laws by world's top tech companies

© www.ibtimes.co.uk
America's Code of Conduct.
Global technology giants like Google and Microsoft have teamed up with civil liberties groups to get Congress to change the country's spying laws. Tech companies say they're potentially losing billions in sales following Edward Snowden's NSA revelations.

More than 40 companies wrote a letter to Congress and the Obama administration, sent Wednesday. Industry leaders such as Apple, Google and Facebook got in touch with civil liberties organizations like the American Civil Liberties Union to try and get Washington to change its spying laws, in the wake of the NSA scandal.

"Now is the time to take on meaningful legislative reforms to the nation's surveillance programs that maintain national security while preserving privacy, transparency and accountability," the group said in the letter. "[T]he status quo is untenable and it is urgent that Congress move forward with reform."

Tech companies have been amongst the biggest supporters of implementing change, as they believe they are losing out financially as the public becomes more suspicious about potential spying from the NSA, in the wake of whistleblower Edward Snowden's revelations.

Richard Salgado, who is Google's director for law enforcement and information security, told a US Senate panel on November 13, 2014, that spying carried out by the NSA has "the great potential for doing serious damage to the competitiveness" of US companies such as Apple, Facebook and Microsoft. He added that "the trust that's threatened is essential to these businesses," Bloomberg News reported.


Comment: So we consumers/citizens, who use the products, support the companies, buy the stocks, invest in their respective futures and, in doing so, incur breach of privacy and continual monitoring by the NSA via these companies...they are concerned about us ($ and competitiveness). Besides abstinence, what choice do we have? And, do these companies really have a choice? Can we say "Smack Down?"


Comment: Up against the US Governmentocracy, tech companies and civil liberties activists will be kicked down the road, just like the citizens who are finding themselves increasingly on the side of the pavement and heading for the ditch - irrelevant. If anything surfaces out of the negotiation that looks too good to be true...you can bet your hubcaps it is. The PTB need The People to be fearful, suspicious, compromised and controlled. While industry and business have an elevated value and are the main arteries to the blackened soul of this country, they are merely a means to An End. There are cameras everywhere...if you don't believe it, check your pocket.


Attention

In flagrant breach of Minsk deal, Kiev moves 200 self-propelled artillery weapons into Luhansk Region

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© AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka
Kiev forces, in violation of the Minsk agreements, have moved up to 200 self-propelled artillery weapons to the area of the Stanitsa Luganskaya city overnight, a spokesman for the militia of the self-proclaimed Luhansk People's Republic (LPR) said on Friday.

"From 11:00 pm yesterday evening to 06:00 am this morning representatives of the people's militia were recording the movement of armoured vehicles of the armed forces of Ukraine from the city of Belovodsk, which is under Ukrainian control, towards Stanitsa Luganskaya," the LuganskInformCentre agency quotes his a saying.

"The pulled in equipment includes self-propelled artery weapons of various modifications," the militia spokesman said.

Comment: This is further proof showing Kiev is not serious about the Minsk agreements.


Bad Guys

Ukraine Infernal Affairs Minister regrets not killing protestors at outset

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© AP Photo/ Sergei Grits
Ukrainian Internal Affairs Minister Arsen Avakov has expressed regret at not having used Ukrainian security forces to blow up the Donetsk and Lugansk region administrative centers at the outset of the conflict in eastern Ukraine early last year.

Ukrainian Minister of Internal Affairs Arsen Avakov told Ukrainian television Thursday that Kiev had made a mistake when it didn't blow up the regional administration centers in Donetsk and Lugansk at the start of the civil conflict there last year.

"I'll say something that may make me look bad; I am a wanted man in Russia as it is. Anyway, back then [at the start of the conflict] we should have blown up the Donetsk Regional Administration," Avakov noted, speaking on Channel 1+1's program 'Right to Rule'. "Perhaps there would be 50 dead terrorists, but then we would not have 5,000 deaths in the Donetsk region. Something similar should have been done by Ukraine's Security Service in Lugansk, but were we ready for this then?" the minister pondered.

Comment: A sick minded individual infecting Ukraine.


Eye 2

Turkey's Parliament passes police state measures


Recep Tayyip Erdogan
After weeks of heated debates and brawls in parliament, Turkey's government passed a security package expanding police powers, along with an online surveillance law and a discretionary fund for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to fund covert operations.

The parliament voted to approve security laws that allow police to conduct searches and arrests without immediate court orders and use firearms against militants. The law separately empowered government-appointed governors to order police or paramilitary forces to conduct searches and detain suspects for up to 48 hours without immediate court orders, state-run Anadolu Agency said. Protesters are banned from carrying fire crackers, firebombs, iron pellets and slingshots, along with covering faces during demonstrations.

The online surveillance law will allow police to keep wiretapping or monitoring online activities of suspects without court orders for 48 hours.

Comment: Right out of the police state handbook. This crack down on security may not sit well with the population.


Propaganda

Information war between Russia and the West intensifies

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© Unknown
NATO forces, including a small detachment of US Second Cavalry Strykers, joining an Independence Day parade in the Estonian city of Narva, a mere 300 yards from the Russian frontier last month. Yet another needless provocation from the West and symbolic of U.S. desperation.
War is raging between the West and Russia, with a key battlefield being the "war for public opinion" and control over information, narratives and perspectives. The Ukrainian crisis has again reiterated the polar opposite narratives between Western and Russian media as the information war intensifies. Western news outlets have been incessantly attempting to portray Russia as the belligerent power over the past year, even though many of the facts contradict this perspective. In order to justify an illegal coup in Kiev - which is part of a grander strategy of destabilising, encircling and antagonising the Russian Federation - the presstitutes are hard at work manufacturing narratives and preparing "Americans for conflict with Russia", as Dr. Paul Craig Roberts wrote in his article: 'CNN is Beating the Drums of War'. Considering the majority of conflicts in recent years have been initiated by Western intervention or meddling - including the Ukrainian crisis of course - Russian propaganda relies far more on facts, as there is often no need to invert truth to support Moscow's position.

"War for Public Opinion"

"It's a war for public opinion because whatever the case may be on the ground Western leaders, specifically NATO-countries, they really need public opinion to be backing whatever moves they are making around the world," was how investigative journalist and founder of 21st Century Wire, Patrick Henningsen, described the Western media landscape in an interview with RT. In an attempt to win the "war for public opinion", the West has launched multiple initiatives recently in a bid to successfully influence and shape public perception on current affairs. The European Union (EU) has launched a 3-month project to prepare a "strategic communication" plan to counter what the EU believes to be Russian "disinformation campaigns", according to draft conclusions of an EU summit obtained by Reuters. The project will be led by Federica Mogherini, the EU's High Representative for Foreign Affairs, who will present her strategy to EU leaders in June.

Comment: As brainwashed and propagandized as much of the Western world is against Russia and its President, Vladimir Putin, the small but ever-growing voices of sanity at work present a perceived threat to the U.S. government and its drive towards world conquest. How else to explain such a continued investment in attempting to drown out dissenting views - not to mention the numerous attempts the West has made to subvert Russia from within; by funding and supporting such ridiculous Kremlin opposition leaders as Alexei Navalny. Or by murdering other so-called opposition leaders like Boris Nemtsov.

See also:

Government propaganda, automated bots, and Internet trolls - The battle to control public opinion and manipulate social media

US psychological warfare in Ukraine and the targeting of online independent media coverage


Chess

The revolt that never came: Kolomoisky in Kiev

Several theses about the consequences of Kolomoisky's defeat.

1. The resignation of Kolomoisky from the position of the governor of the Dnepropetrovsk region implies that there will be a reconfiguration of the political and economical field of the South-Eastern Ukraine. The chief jew-banderovite will be replaced by Rezhnichenko, who is a person from Poroshenko's deck. Previously, he was given the Zaporozhye region to be his feeding ground. Some mistakenly believed that the reason of the conflict lies in the energy assets. However, the real reason is primarily the establishment of political control over the regions of the south-east, which where Kolomoisky previously reigned unchallenged. The permission from Washington was obtained for this process, which predetermined the rapid capitulation of Kolomoisky. This whole story shows how, by a single motion from Washington, can the intra-Ukrainian political alignment change and how far a regular Ukrainian is far from determining his fate and how little power even the bloodsuckers from the junta leadership actually wield over it.

2. Some mistakenly believe that Kolomoisky has some kind of clever plan, that he'll go now and then he'll emerge and... and then he'll do something.

Comment: Now Poroshenko is offering Dmitro Yarosh, leader of Right Sector, a Ministry of Defense position. So on the one hand, we have PP strengthening the SBU, making threats against the 'illegal battalions', ordering them to join the UAF or leave the front by April 1, making high-profile arrests, and recently even blaming a a bus attack on Right Sector; on the other, he is now offering a deal to Yarosh, which would potentially rob Kolomoisky of a large portion of his military support.

The question is, can Poroshenko control groups like Right Sector? Because he sure as heck needs them; they've done the majority of the torture and killing in Donetsk and Lugansk.


Pirates

Monsanto lobbyist swears pesticide safe enough to drink...until journalist offers him a glass

© Unknown
Lobbyists are known for talking a big game, and none have that reputation more than the ones who work for embattled chemical company Monsanto. But what happens when a journalist asks one to put his money where his mouth is? Cringeworthy results.

Monsanto has recently made headlines once again when a World Health Organization report found that the ingredient glyphosate was likely posing considerable risk to people.

According to the Des Moines Register:
The World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) said in a report Friday that glyphosate was "probably carcinogenic" to humans. The agency said the chemical, used in more than 750 products made by Monsanto and other companies, has been found in water, air and food during spraying. But WHO said use of the weed killer is often low in areas where most of the public would face the greatest risk of exposure.
In the United States, Monsanto seems intent to keep exposure low, despite insisting that it's harmless. In other countries, particularly in undeveloped countries with lax regulations, the herbicide is used liberally and the health effects are beginning to become extremely worrying. A recent study found cases of cancer having doubled in a short time, just as the use of crop dusting and industrial-scale use of herbicides has skyrocketed. Sri Lankans have experienced similar problems. According to a study done by Rajarata University and the California State University, glyphosate was linked to a spike in kidney problems, as well as a host of other ailments.

In the fallout, Monsanto has gone on the offensive, issuing press releases and rallying their army of well-paid lobbyists in the hopes of killing the story.

In a clip released in anticipation of an upcoming french documentary about Monsanto, a flack hired by Monsanto to argue that the active ingredient in its Roundup weed killer products is harmless towards people is put on the spot. After towing the official line that Roundup is not raising the cancer rates in areas where it is used heavily, one such lobbyist Dr. Patrick Moore swore that Roundup was so safe that he would drink it and nothing would happen, leading to an amazing exchange between the interviewer and an increasingly frantic Moore.
"You can drink a whole quart of it and it won't hurt you."

"You want to drink some? We have some here."

"I'd be happy to, actually."
Within seconds of accepting, and perhaps realizing that the interviewer was dead serious, Moore has a crisis of conviction and backs away. "Not really," he demurs. "But I know it wouldn't hurt me."

The interviewer presses on. "If you say [it's safe], I have some."

"I'm not stupid," Moore answers.

According to Moore, people try to commit suicide with his products all the time but fail. (Not exactly a great sales pitch.) However, each time he is offered a glass of the "harmless" chemical, Moore panics. Sensing he is losing control of the narrative (and looking like a hypocrite), Moore gets angry and walks out of the interview, with a final comment that the interviewer was "a complete jerk."

Briefcase

Ukraine's Chief Anti-Corruption official fired after uncovering corruption

© YouTube
Should have understood his task was to uncover corruption of previous government.
Hromadske TV is a Ukrainian TV station founded in late 2013 in support of the EuroMaidan movement. It is funded by Dutch, American and British Embassies as well as George Soros' Open Society Foundations

This article originally appeared at Hromadske TV. It was translated by Kristina Rus at Fort Russ.


Comment: Interesting news coming from a Ukraine TV channel. Is "Yats" on the way out?


Snakes in Suits

Is Yats packing too?

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"After Kolomoiskiy's "resignation" there is a theoretical possibility to push through Yatsenyuk's one. He steals big time, and is generally not a good person"

While Ukrainian coal miners threaten to march on Kiev demanding months of unpaid wages, a serious contest is going on for the seat of the scandalous head of the country's government.

As reported by Vzglyad, he may be replaced by people from Poroshenko's team, eagerly trying to keep their hold on power, but also by former President Yanukovych's associates. Given the distrust to the current prime minister and the crisis in the country, the possibility for his departure doesn't seem to far-fetched.

The reforms Yatsenyuk announced didn't bring an economic miracle, so people doubt his abilities. The degree of dissatisfaction with the prime minister is growing, as well as the confrontation between supporters of Yatsenyuk and Poroshenko. And rumors of imminent changes to the Cabinet suggest that Arseny Petrovich (Yatseniuk) may be politely asked to leave.

Comment: Of course if "Yats" leaves, it won't change the situation in Ukraine, especially if the Western powers have anything to do with it.