Author Topic: Tales from Mother Russia  (Read 98721 times)

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Offline fajwat

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Tales from Mother Russia
« on: November 24, 2006, 09:50:23 PM »
edit:I trimmed up this thread and will use it to be a sort of gathering place for scary stories from Russia and discussion beyond the dead spy issue.
-nacho






dead russian ex-spy

That ex-Russian spy died, having fallen ill shortly after gaining British citizenship.  He was poisoned by an extraordinarily rare radioactive element, which suggests that the assassin had serious backing.  In a statement read after his death, the ex-spy accused his nemesis Putin.

Reuters isn't sure what the fallout will be since Europe needs Putin's gas and the US needs his support against Terrism.

Wheee.








« Last Edit: May 31, 2007, 10:54:26 AM by nacho »
"If it were up to me I would close Guantánamo not tomorrow but this afternoon... Essentially, we have shaken the belief that the world had in America's justice system... and it's causing us far more damage than any good we get from it."

-Colin Powell

Offline RottingCorpse

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2006, 10:02:34 PM »
Nacho and I (mostly Nacho) have been telling you for years that mother Russia is a ticking time-bomb of trouble.

Offline nacho

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2006, 04:59:43 PM »
Nacho and I (mostly Nacho) have been telling you for years that mother Russia is a ticking time-bomb of trouble.

At this point I'm starting to lose my ticking timebomb sense.  It's either the crippled tortoise of trouble, or Putin is simply an incompetent small fry who can't win a somewhat organized internal war and lashes out at journalists and people on the street in fits of vodka-addled bitterness and  what appears to be a childlike sense of nostalgia.

Offline fajwat

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2006, 08:44:30 PM »
I get the sense that Putin's thorough.  I think he has a sense of how young and healthy he is, and wants to finish consolidating power as his first project.  I get a sense of working toward completeness oozing out of Russia.
"If it were up to me I would close Guantánamo not tomorrow but this afternoon... Essentially, we have shaken the belief that the world had in America's justice system... and it's causing us far more damage than any good we get from it."

-Colin Powell

Offline RottingCorpse

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2006, 08:51:58 PM »
I think Putin is a nutjob who's more likely than anyone on the planet to so something extremely stupid with say, a nuclear weapon.

Offline monkey!

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2006, 01:44:41 PM »
Putin's just what Mother Russia needs.
There will come a day for every man when he will relish the prospect of eating his own shit. That day has yet to come for me.

Offline Matt

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #6 on: November 27, 2006, 01:50:15 PM »
I concur with Fajwat. I get the feeling that Putin's a Russian Saddam, just without the genocidal hate.

Offline nacho

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #7 on: November 27, 2006, 01:56:46 PM »
Here's an article from a couple years ago:

http://www.greatsociety.org/fpm/content/view/109/2/

Offline nacho

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #8 on: November 27, 2006, 03:14:16 PM »

Offline monkey!

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #9 on: November 27, 2006, 03:21:58 PM »
Leave Putin alone, you Capitalist fiends.

Let the oligarchy rule!
There will come a day for every man when he will relish the prospect of eating his own shit. That day has yet to come for me.

Offline nacho

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2006, 03:23:29 PM »
The only good oligarchy is the American Oligarchy!

Offline monkey!

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2006, 03:25:02 PM »
Nah, it ain't.
There will come a day for every man when he will relish the prospect of eating his own shit. That day has yet to come for me.

Offline fajwat

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2006, 10:08:47 PM »
Nice front page article.  I vote for turning dates back on.  Regarding their military strength... the squall torpedo:

http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/missile/row/shkval.htm
"If it were up to me I would close Guantánamo not tomorrow but this afternoon... Essentially, we have shaken the belief that the world had in America's justice system... and it's causing us far more damage than any good we get from it."

-Colin Powell

Offline nacho

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Re: Dead Spy
« Reply #13 on: December 15, 2006, 03:38:22 PM »
Here's an article from a couple years ago:

http://www.greatsociety.org/fpm/content/view/109/2/


Hi!

Quote
$20bn gas project seized by Russia

· Russia seizes control of world's biggest liquefied gas project
· Shell forced to give up controlling stake after pressure from Kremlin
Terry Macalister, Tom Parfitt in Moscow
Tuesday December 12, 2006

Guardian
Shell is being forced by the Russian government to hand over its controlling stake in the world's biggest liquefied gas project, provoking fresh fears about the Kremlin's willingness to use the country's growing strength in natural resources as a political weapon.

After months of relentless pressure from Moscow, the Anglo-Dutch company has to cut its stake in the $20bn Sakhalin-2 scheme in the far east of Russia in favour of the state-owned energy group Gazprom.

The Russian authorities are also threatening BP over alleged environmental violations on a Siberian field in what is seen as a wider attempt to seize back assets handed over to foreign companies when energy prices were low.

The moves will alarm many investors in the City of London as Shell and other share prices are hit, but the news will also increase ministers' concerns about Britain's energy security.

Russia is becoming a key source of natural gas to the UK and Gazprom has already made clear it would like to buy a company such as Centrica, which owns British Gas. One third of western Europe's natural gas is supplied by Russia - a figure expected to rise over the next decade. The security of energy supply is now the main political issue between the EU and the Kremlin. Nervousness about the Russians was heightened last winter when the gas supply to Ukraine was cut off in the middle of a political dispute.

Shell confirmed last night that its chief executive, Jeroen van der Veer, met Gazprom's chairman, Alexei Miller, in Moscow last Friday but would say only that the talks on Sakhalin-2 were "constructive". The Russian company said that "Shell did indeed make several proposals concerning Sakhalin-2" at the meeting which came after Shell was threatened with having its operating licence withdrawn.

The energy minister, Viktor Khristenko, is expected to give details today of a deal under which Shell and its Japanese partners are likely to get a cash payment in return for giving Gazprom a stake in the project.

Dmitry Peskov, the official spokesman of Russia's president, Vladimir Putin, hit out yesterday at critics in the western media who implicated the Russian government in manipulating oil projects and the poisoning of dissidents. He said there was too much "anti-Russian hysteria".With reference to BP's oil spills in Alaska, he added: "If it's an environmental problem in Alaska it's environmental. If it's in Russia you call it politics."

But other senior politicians in Moscow had no doubt Shell was being harassed into reducing its 55% stake in Sakhalin-2 to something close to 25% through relentless pressure from ministries.

"In the current situation Shell will not be able to defend its economic interests in a civilised process with the Russian authorities, so they will be obliged to give up control if they want to save at least some adequate part of the project," said Vladimir Milov, Russia's former deputy energy minister.

Bob Amsterdam, the lawyer of the jailed oil oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky, said the Kremlin was "once again" using legal pretexts to cover what was essentially an expropriation of private resources in the energy sector. "The Kremlin ought to cease this behaviour," he said.

The Sakhalin-2 project is scheduled to start operations in 2008 and involves finding and producing oil and gas near Sakhalin island, formerly known only as a penal colony during the tsarist and Soviet eras.

The two fields that make up Sakhalin-2 have an estimated 1.2bn barrels of oil and 500bn cubic metres of natural gas. The gas is to be brought ashore, liquefied and frozen before being shipped to customers in Japan and elsewhere.

The scheme created almost immediate controversy with western conservation groups because it involves putting equipment close to breeding grounds of endangered western grey whales. There has also been criticism that sensitive salmon fishing areas are being hit by dumping of dredging spoil waste amid worries about oil spills from platforms in the Okhotsk and Japanese seas.

But even non-governmental organisations have expressed surprise at the way the Russian authorities have taken up environmental issues since the summer after taking little interest before.

Mr Peskov said it was a coincidence of timing and that it was "a process that is natural for every country" to come to eventually. Mr Putin's spokesman said Russia wanted to encourage western investment and wanted closer links with west European countries to foster mutual "interdependence".
Guardian Unlimited © Guardian News and Media Limited 2006

Offline nacho

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Re: Dead Spy (and tales from Mother Russia)
« Reply #14 on: December 15, 2006, 03:59:22 PM »
Since I just edited this thread to be for general Russian scary stories, here are a couple:


First, KGB.  Not surprising...and not much room to talk, since we're all doing this sort of thing now.  But Putin isn't a cuddly guy like...uh...Bush.  I think.


Quote
KGB influence 'soars under Putin'
By Steven Eke
BBC Russian affairs analyst 



Four out of five political leaders and state administrators in Russia either have been or still are members of the security services, a study suggests.
The unprecedented research implies a huge expansion of KGB-FSB influence in politics and business in recent years.

Many of the officials concerned have been appointed under President Vladimir Putin - himself a former spy chief.

This has led many liberal commentators to claim their influence is growing unchecked, and threatening democracy.

Politics and business

This new research was conducted by Olga Kryshtanovskaya, a respected academic, for the Centre for the Study of the Elite, part of the prestigious Academy of Sciences.

It confirms that the siloviki - ex-KGB operatives or those working for its successor organisation, the FSB - have done well in President Putin's Russia.

It has long been thought that their influence was growing. But this first, concerted attempt to provide empirical evidence of its scale, has produced some surprising results.


Among the presidential administration, members of the government, deputies of both chambers of parliament, regional heads, as well as the boards of Russia's top state corporations, four in five officials worked for the KGB, or continue to work for one or more of its successor organisations.

The research also suggests the political and business elites are rapidly coalescing, with some key industrial figures, such as the head of the state weapons export agency, also from the same security service heritage.

Contrast

How different Russia looks from other formerly communist countries in eastern Europe, where there have been attempts to identify individuals who worked for Soviet-era security services, many of which were highly repressive.

Some of these individuals have been put on trial for their alleged crimes.

But perhaps more significantly, there has been a real effort to keep them out of politics and big business.

But whatever it means for Russia's future as a democracy - or not - so far, unhappiness about Russia's new ruling class has been expressed only by the country's beleaguered liberal minority.



Next up is an interesting little protest.  Some points on how things are being run, politically.  That is -- Putin is in charge as long as he wants to be.


Quote
Anti-Putin protest 'to go ahead'
Russia's opposition groups have vowed to go ahead with Saturday's protest march against President Vladimir Putin in Moscow, despite an official ban.
The rally is being organised by former chess world champion Garry Kasparov, who has said its participants would try to avoid any possible provocations.

The march is against what protesters describe as rampant corruption and a Kremlin crackdown on democracy.

A pro-Kremlin youth group plans to hold its own demonstration on Sunday.

'Uniting opposition'

Mr Kasparov will be leading the rally, described as "the march of those who disagree".


He has said that the authorities are violating his constitutional rights by banning the march.

Its organisers say they have been ordered by the Moscow city authorities to remain in one square.

And activists in a number of Russia's regions, who planned to travel to the capital to participate, claim they have been ordered to report to police stations instead.

"We took additional steps to maintain the format of the action and avoid outright clashes, which we realise could end badly," Mr Kasparov told a news conference in Moscow.

He said the march would unite "opposition forces of different political persuasions".

The organisers are expecting about 4,000 people to join the march.

A pro-Kremlin youth group plans to hold its own demonstration a day later.

It says it plans to attract more than 100,000 participants, but no restrictions have been imposed on it.

Offices raided

Mr Kasparov left professional chess to devote his attention to opposition politics, the BBC's Russian affairs analyst Steven Eke says.

Mr Kasparov now runs an organisation called the United Civil Front - an umbrella group which brings together a motley array of liberal free marketeers, nationalists and radical youth movements.

The Russian opposition has long been wracked by internal divisions, our analyst says.

But he says that with parliamentary elections due next year, and presidential elections due early in 2008, they have begun to coordinate their efforts.

They are angered, especially, by recent changes to Russian electoral law, which, they say, are designed to push the smaller, opposition parties out of the race.

Already, Russia's parliament is dominated by pro-Kremlin parties that generally rubber-stamp laws proposed by the government, our analyst says.

However, the authorities have already made clear that they view Mr Kasparov's activities as potentially subversive.

Earlier this week, more than a dozen officers from the FSB, Russia's domestic security service, raided his office to remove documents and equipment.

Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/europe/6181613.stm