by Stephen Lendman
Ukraine remains a global flashpoint. Turmoil, possible internal power struggles and uncertainty reflect things. Plundering its economy is planned.
Obama's Brussels speech was duplicitous. It was provocative. It stoked confrontation with Russia.
Daily inflammatory Western headlines continue. Anti-Russian vitriol remains intense. Lies substitute for truth.
Friday's Wall Street Journal was typical. It headlined "Russian Buildup Stokes Worries."
No "buildup" whatever exist. Not according to Journal contributors. Propaganda substitutes for accurate reporting. Lies drown out truth.
Unnamed US officials were cited. Credibility isn't Washington's long suit. Nor Journal editors and contributors.
"Russian troops massing near Ukraine are actively concealing their positions and establishing supply lines that could be used in a prolonged deployment, ratcheting up concerns that Moscow is preparing for another major incursion and not conducting exercises as it claims," the Journal reported.
"Such an incursion could take place without warning because Russia has already deployed the array of military forces needed for such an operation," it added.
According to US officials, Russia massed 50,000 troops on Ukraine's border. An unnamed Ukrainian official said 100,000.
A "senior US official" said "(w)hat matters is the intent. And we don't have a clear sense of that."
False! No Russian buildup exists. No Ukraine invasion is planned. Putin isn't expansionist. He respects sovereign rights of other nations.
His agenda is polar opposite Washington's. Don't expect Journal editors or contributors to explain. Russia bashing continues daily.
Its intensity exceeds the worst of Cold War years. It shows no signs of ebbing. Lies, damn lies, and misinformation remain official Western editorial policy.
Stars and Stripes is a Pentagon publication. On March 27, it featured a McClatchy Foreign Staff report. It quoted illegitimate Orange Revolution leader Viktor Yushchenko.
Washington elevated him to power fraudulently. He left office widely despised. His last public act was naming Nazi collaborator Stepan Bandera a Hero of Ukraine.
It's the highest national title award. It's given for "personal heroism and great labor achievements." Bandara collaborated in mass executions and ethnic cleansing.
Yushchenko lied claiming "Putin will not pause…This is harvest time for" him. "(H)is mission in this life is to restore the USSR."
Russia "has not changed, not in 50 years, or 100 years, or 200 years. When Russia builds an empire, it starts with Ukraine."
"In other words, to build a new empire, the success of Putin's policy rests on the war in Ukraine. His mission is not complete without it."
"The biggest European state is disappearing before our eyes. It must be a common cause to stop the aggressor. Crimea was a test. If we don't understand that, we're inviting the aggressor to advance even further."
Ukraine's problems are its own making. Possible internal power struggles emerged. Right Sector neo-Nazis are involved. They're militantly hardline.
They're the worst of a bad lot of rogues running things. They're gun-toting, radicalized terrorists. They want more authority than already.
They're incensed about Aleksandr Muzychko's (aka Sashko Bilyi) assassination. He was killed in Rovno. It's in western Ukraine. He coordinated Right Sector elements. They vow revenge.
Over 1,500 Right Sector extremists encircled Kiev's parliament (Rada). On Thursday, they threatened to storm it.
They wore masks. They came armed. They brandished bats.They demand Interior Minister Arsen Avakov's ouster. "Avakov get out," they screamed!
They want him tried for murder. Right Sector Dmitry Yarosh said:
"We'll wait for the negotiators from the Parliament, the MPs, but we won't settle for Avakov's resignation. We want his tribunal."
On Friday, Voice of Russia (VOR) said Right Sector members postponed storming Kiev's parliament.
An interim commission was formed. It'll investigate Muzychko's killing. Right Sector members will be involved.
Oleh Odnorozhenko is one of its Political Council officials. Following negotiations with parliamentarians, he said:
"(T)he demands put forth by the Right Sector have been fulfilled, and tomorrow we will gather outside the Verkhovna Rada and will continue to monitor the situation at the Verkhovna Rada."
Demands for Avakov's ouster continue. He's getting Right Sector threats, he said. He "accepts the challenge," he added. On Friday, rallies outside Kiev's parliament continued for his removal.
Right Sector elements want Sokil (Falcon) special police involved in Muzychko's killing arrested. Conditions in Kiev remain tense. Internal conflict could erupt any time. Perhaps civil war.
A previous article discussed plundering Ukraine for profit. A $14 - 18 billion "Stand-By Arrangement" IMF loan was arranged. Financial terrorism describes it.
It's usury of the worst kind. It's grand theft, not aid. It assures debt bondage. It guarantees Greek style depression conditions. It promises unspeakable human misery.
It doesn't matter. It's official Kiev policy. It has nothing to do with restoring economic stability and growth. It has everything to do with strip-mining Ukraine of its material wealth.
Getting in bed with IMF rogues assures polar opposite policies than what's needed. Dystopian harshness is certain. Selling off Ukraine's crown jewels at fire sale prices is coming.
So are mass layoffs, deep social spending cuts, frozen or lower wages, deeply impoverishing millions, and harsh crackdowns on nonbelievers.
Not according to New York Times editors. A disgraceful editorial headlined "Welcome Help for Ukraine," saying:
"(T)he country just got some encouraging economic news." IMF money is coming. Congress approved $1 billion in loan guarantee help plus $150 million in direct aid. Europe agreed to $2.2 billion.
"(N)ew financing…could help a desperate country avoid default and begin rebuilding its economy and an effective democracy," said Times editors.
False! Putschist governance reflects despotism, not democracy. IMF loans guarantee polar opposite conditions than what Times editors claim.
They hailed what demands condemnation. It's longstanding Times policy. It's consistently on the wrong side of history. Don't expect them to explain.
Bashing Russia takes precedence. On March 27, Russophobes Jason Pack and Brendan Simms were featured.
They headlined "A Weak EU Can't Stop Putin." They called Crimea's legitimate referendum "a sham."
They denounced "Mr. Putin's thuggery." They urged a more robust EU response. They want member countries more effectively "defend(ing) their own backyard."
They lied saying Russia threatens them. No threat whatever exists. If EU countries "do not unite to face the Russian threat, Europe will cease to be a player on the world stage," they claimed.
Remaining confrontational risks igniting an East/West conflict. Don't expect Times contributors to explain.
Pack and Simms praised NATO's war of aggression on Libya. They called it "a best-case scenario (of) shared…objectives."
Ukraine's crisis represents a "worse-case" one, they added. Russia is a key trading partner. Economic and political punishment cut both ways.
Crisis conditions give European leaders a "perfect opportunity (for) genuine Continent-wide integration," they said.
The ludicrous alternative they envision is Putin being able to restore Russia's empire, "manipulate energy prices, roll back human rights and destabilize the Middle East."
No responsible editors would publish this rubbish. Times editors featured it.
Separately, The Times headlined "Former Prime Minister Announces Candidacy for President of Ukraine."
What followed omitted what readers most need to know. She was an illegitimate Orange Revolution prime minister.
She's a convicted mega-crook. She stole millions. She was imprisoned for embezzlement and serious "abuse of public office."
Charges included illegally diverting $425 million meant for environmental projects into pension funds. A second case involved stealing around $130 million for personal use.
Illegitimate Kiev putschists lawlessly freed her. She belongs in prison serving hard time. She's the best-known presidential aspirant in a field largely resembling a police lineup.
Times editors largely suppressed information about her leaked phone conversation with former Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council deputy secretary Nestor Shufrych.
She called for turning Russia to ashes. "It's about time we grab our guns and kill those katsaps (a derogatory Ukrainian term) together with their leader."
Referring to Putin, she said she's ready to "grab a machine gun and shoot that m…erf…er in the head."
Her comments circulated on You Tube. They got wide alternative media coverage. Western media largely ignored it.
Times editors entirely did at first. Times Tymoshenko report contributors gave it short shrift. They did so well into their account. It stopped well short of proper coverage. It demanded headlines.
Tymoshenko resembles Washington-installed fascist putschists running Ukraine. They have no legitimacy whatever. Nor she. Don't expect Times editors to explain.
Separately, Washington imposed more sanctions on Russia. The Commerce Department banned exports of so-called "dual use" items with potential military applications.
Its Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) did so weeks earlier. It was done quietly. Its web site said:
"Since March 1, 2014, BIS has placed a hold on the issuance of licenses that would authorize the export or re-export of items to Russia. BIS will continue this practice until further notice."
On March 27, Foreign Policy headlined "US quietly imposes more sanctions on Russia," saying:
It did so "without anyone really knowing about it." It called its report "exclusive."
"In 2013, BIS approved 1,832 export contracts to Russia for so-called dual use products like lasers and explosives…"
"The deals were worth roughly $1.5 billion, $800 million of which was for devices cryptically described as "designed to initiate an energetic charge."
Authorized exports of "defense articles and defense services to Russia" were stopped until further notice. At the time, no announcement was made.
On Thursday, State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf discussed it saying:
"The State Department has also placed a hold on the issuance of licenses that would authorize the export of defense articles and defense services to Russia."
New deals are blocked. Doing so cuts both ways. US producers are affected.
House members overwhelmingly authorized new sanctions on Russian officials. Russophobe Senators Dan Coats (R. IN), John Cornyn (R. TX) and others urged Obama to impose more sanctions, saying.
"We call on you to cancel all existing DoD contracts with Rosoboronexport, as well as any plans for future deals, and impose sanctions to ban contracts with any company that cooperates with Rosoboronexport on military programs."
"Doing so would require our foreign partners to make a choice between America and Putin."
"Rosoboronexport is an arm of the Russian government and a powerful instrument of Vladimir Putin's increasingly belligerent foreign policy, and it handles more than 80 percent of Russia's weapons exports."
Days earlier, Coats introduced a Ukrainian aid bill amendment. It prohibits doing business with Rosoboronexport. It cancels existing contracts and agreements.
Intense Russia bashing continues. It remains to be seen how far things go. Too far risks them spinning out-of-control. Major conflicts start this way.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at email@example.com.
His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.
It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.