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A Close Look at the Sources for the West’s “Intelligence” on Russian Action in Ukraine

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Swo­bo­da leader Oleh Tiah­ny­bok salutes. Top-rank­ing Ukrain­ian defense offi­cial Andriy Paru­biy was a found­ing mem­ber of the par­ty.

COMMENT:We can’t say whether or not Russ­ian armor, self-pro­pelled artillery and oth­er forces have entered Ukraine. We CAN and DO say that the sources for such “intel­li­gence” are worse than unre­li­able.

Not only do they have a track record of lying–witness the “rebel down­ing” of Malaysia Air­lines Flight MH17–but they are inex­tri­ca­bly linked with the Under­ground Reich forces to which the OUN/B ele­ments in charge in Ukraine belong.

The Group­Think line cir­cu­lat­ing in Wash­ing­ton and Europe is that Pres­i­dent Putin and Rus­sia are replay­ing the Hitler tac­tic of slow­ly gob­bling up ter­ri­to­ry intend­ed for con­quest.

The truth is the oppo­site. The agree­ment where­by Gor­bachev agreed to per­mit the reuni­fi­ca­tion of Ger­many and the req­ui­site with­draw­al of some 24 divisions–totaling around 300,000 troops–mandated that NATO and the EU would not encroach on East­ern Europe and the for­mer U.S.S.R.

They have done just that, with some 12 for­mer War­saw Pact mem­bers hav­ing joined NATO.

Note how many of the East­ern Euro­pean coun­tries man­i­fest­ing World War II fas­cist her­itage are NATO mem­bers. Note, also, where the reports of Russ­ian artillery inside Ukraine fir­ing on Ukrain­ian forces come from.

The depen­dence on unre­con­struct­ed Nazi sym­pa­thiz­ers ref­er­enc­ing World War II-era fas­cist ide­o­log­i­cal con­structs is as dan­ger­ous as it is rel­a­tivis­tic. Note, again, our reliance for “intel­li­gence” on the very fas­cist ele­ments we nur­tured in the polit­i­cal womb of CIA/State Department/BND/GOP and then recast in East­ern Europe and the for­mer U.S.S.R. after the Cold war.

The satel­lite imagery pur­port­ing to show Russ­ian armor and self-pro­pelled artillery inside of Ukraine comes from a pri­vate com­pa­ny–Dig­i­tal­Globe. That com­pa­ny was found­ed by key per­son­nel from Ronald Rea­gan’s Strate­gic Defense Ini­tia­tive.

Dig­i­tal­Globe co-founder Doug Gerull had pre­vi­ous­ly worked for the Zeiss firm, dis­cussed in FTR #272 as one of the German/Underground Reich/Bormann firms that were mov­ing into satel­lite imagery tech­nol­o­gy in the U.S.

“The Hushed-Up Hitler Fac­tor in Ukraine” by Dovid Katz; Con­sor­tium News; 8/16/2014.

Behind the Ukraine cri­sis is a revi­sion of World War II his­tory that seeks to hon­or east­ern Euro­pean col­lab­o­ra­tors with Hitler and the Holo­caust by repack­ag­ing these right­ists as anti-Sovi­et heroes, a real­ity shield­ed from the U.S. pub­lic, as Dovid Katz explains.

Would Amer­ica sup­port any type of Hit­lerism in the course of the State Department’s effort to turn the anti-Russ­ian polit­i­cal class­es of East­ern Europe into paragons of PR per­fec­tion that may not be crit­i­cized, how­so­ever mild­ly?

It was frankly dis­con­cert­ing to see Sen. John McCain, R‑Arizona, embrac­ing the leaderof Ukraine’s far right, anti-Semit­ic, pro-fas­cist Svo­boda par­ty last Decem­ber. It was dis­turb­ing to learn of the neo-Nazi ele­ments that pro­vided the “mus­cle” for the actu­al Maid­an takeover last Feb­ru­ary (BBC’s News­night was among the few major West­ern out­lets to dare cov­er that open­ly).

Most dis­turb­ing of all has been the main­stream West­ern media’s almost Sovi­et-grade wall some­how erect­ed against crit­i­cal men­tion of the far-right com­po­nent of Ukraine’s 2014 his­tory, ren­der­ing any such thought as wor­thy of ridicule on New York Times opin­ion pages last spring.

Most hilar­i­ous was the Times’s May 2014 pub­li­ca­tion of an (obvi­ously ghost-writ­ten, State Depart­ment-script­ed) op-ed by Ukrain­ian pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Yulia V. Tymoshenko which quotes Churchill writ­ing to Roo­sevelt, “Give us the tools, as we will fin­ish the job,” rum­bling on about “the just and open democ­racy that is America’s great­est bequest to the world.”

This, from the far right politi­cian who had short­ly before that expressed geno­ci­dal mus­ings for the mil­lions of Russ­ian-speak­ing cit­i­zens of her coun­try, and who was, dur­ing her tenure as prime min­is­ter, a prime devo­tee of the wartime fas­cist leader Stepan Ban­dera, whose orga­ni­za­tion slaugh­tered tens of thou­sands (many his­to­ri­ans put it at hun­dreds of thou­sands) of Pol­ish and Jew­ish civil­ians based on eth­nic­ity, in the Aryanist dri­ve for an eth­ni­cally pure state pre­cisely on the Nazi mod­el.

It was there­fore refresh­ing to read in last Saturday’s Times a report that had, albeit buried near the end, a sin­gle line inform­ing read­ers that “One [mili­tia active in the Kiev government’s mil­i­tary cam­paign] known as Azov, which took over the vil­lage of Marin­ka, flies a neo-Nazi sym­bol resem­bling a Swasti­ka as its flag.” By con­trast, London’s right-of-cen­ter Dai­ly Tele­graph ran a whole report Mon­day titled “The neo-Nazi brigade fight­ing pro-Russ­ian sep­a­ratists,” right­ly includ­ing the obser­va­tion that the neo-Nazi forces being used by the Ukrain­ian gov­ern­ment to do mil­i­tary heavy lift­ing “should send a shiv­er down Europe’s spine.”

This goes to the heart of what is being kept from so many West­ern, and espe­cially Amer­i­can read­ers. Putin — for all his author­i­tar­i­an­ism, anti-demo­c­ra­t­ic bent and revan­chism — is not the cause of the Ukrain­ian conun­drum (though he is cer­tainly exploit­ing it). There is a gen­uine divide in Ukraine between a nation­al­ist-dom­i­nat­ed west and a Russ­ian-speak­ing east.

Any­body who has trav­eled the coun­try will tell you that these “Rus­sians” in the east, and wher­ever else they are to be found, would much rather be liv­ing in a Euro­pean Union-type coun­try than in a Rus­sia-type coun­try. What then is the prob­lem? They do not want to live in an ultra­na­tion­al­ist-dom­i­nat­ed state that is anti-Russ­ian in a 1930s Aryanesque sense of eth­ni­cally and lin­guis­ti­cally pure Ukrain­ism. They much pre­fer the Rus­sia-mod­el state to that.

Now those anti-racist val­ues, includ­ing the rever­ing of the Anglo-Amer­i­can-Sovi­et alliance that brought down Hitler, and the dis­dain of soci­eties found­ed on mod­els of racist puri­ty, are in fact also Amer­i­can val­ues. But that affin­ity between West­ern val­ues and the east­ern­ers would nev­er even be guessed at in the avalanche of Cold War II news­feed com­ing our way.

Inci­den­tally, some West­ern reports that car­i­ca­ture the Putin­ist press’s use of the word “fas­cists” for Ukrain­ian nation­al­ists don’t appre­ci­ate the col­lo­quial Russ­ian usage where it refers not nec­es­sar­ily to swasti­ka-wield­ing thugs but even to high soci­ety that holds in esteem the likes of Ban­dera and oth­er World War II-era Nazist fas­cists as sup­posed myth­i­cal “free­dom fight­ers” to be revered today by the state, in street names, stat­ues, muse­ums, and more.

That is not to say that America’s allies among the west­ern Ukrain­ian nation­al­ists are all pro-fas­cist. They are not. But there are two salient issues that go beyond Ukraine and cov­er all of “anti-Russ­ian” East­ern Europe, par­tic­u­larly the new mem­ber states of NATO and the EU.

The first is casu­al accep­tance of neo-Nazi ele­ments, sym­bol­ism and ide­ol­ogy as part of any kind of sup­pos­edly cen­trist main­stream. In Latvia [NATO member–D.E.] and Esto­nia [NATO member–D.E.], this is exem­pli­fied by tac­it (or not so tac­it) state sup­port for hon­ors for those coun­tries’ Waf­fen SS divi­sions. In Lithua­nia [NATO member–D.E.], it can be man­i­fest in state-spon­sored shrines to the Lithuan­ian Activist Front (LAF) killers who unleashed the Holo­caust on Jew­ish neigh­bors before the first Ger­man sol­diers had quite arrived.

But there is a sec­ond issue that is much deep­er, and has noth­ing to do with these more osten­ta­tious kinds of Nazi wor­ship. That issue is his­to­ry.

‘His­tory’ Alive

While World War II is indeed “his­tory” for the West, it is very much part of Now in East­ern Europe. State-spon­sored insti­tu­tions in the three Baltic coun­tries, Lithua­nia, Latvia and Esto­nia, espe­cially, and also at times in Croa­tia [NATO member–D.E.], Roma­nia [NATO member–D.E.] and else­where have invest­ed a for­tune in a kind of Holo­caust revi­sion­ism that would white­wash their own nation­al­ists’ col­lab­o­ra­tion with Hitler and turn the Sovi­et Union into the real Hitler.

Known as “Dou­ble Geno­cide,” it posits the absolute the­o­ret­i­cal equal­ity of Nazi and Sovi­et crimes. Its con­sti­tu­tion is the 2008 “Prague Dec­la­ra­tion [the Czech Repub­lic is a NATO member–D.E.],” which most Amer­i­cans have nev­er heard of, that sports the word “same” five times in ref­er­ence to Nazi and Sovi­et crimes. Even few­er Amer­i­cans know that one of its demands, that the world accept a uni­tary mix-and-match day of remem­brance for Nazi and Sovi­et vic­tims, was snuck under the radar into last June’s con­gres­sional mil­i­tary appro­pri­a­tions bill.

The issue across the board is the choice made by nation­al­ist elites in East­ern Europe to con­struct nation­al myths not on the mer­its of a country’s great artists, poets, thinkers and gen­uine free­dom fight­ers, but all too often, on the basis of Nazi col­lab­o­ra­tors whose claim to fame is that they were also “anti-Sovi­et patri­ots.”

The fact of the mat­ter is that vir­tu­ally all of Hitler’s col­lab­o­ra­tors in East­ern Europe were “anti-Sovi­et.” In fact, the Sovi­et Union was the only pow­er putting up resis­tance to Hitler in East­ern Europe. If the Sovi­ets had not pushed the Nazi armies back by the spring of 1944, at huge sac­ri­fice to all the Sovi­et peo­ples, there would have been no D‑Day or open­ing of a West­ern front.

Whether it is hero-wor­ship of Hungary’s Mik­lós Hor­thy [Hun­gary is a NATO member–D.E.], lead­ers of Croatia’s Hit­lerist Ustasha [Croa­t­ia is a NATO member–D.E.], the Nazis’ Waf­fen SS divi­sions in Latvia and Esto­nia, or the likes of Ukraine’s Ban­dera and his OUN and UPA, and the Waf­fen SS, it is an offense to West­ern val­ues that a NATO or EU state, or NATO/EU-aspir­ing state, would dis­burse state funds on the dis­tor­tion of his­tory, obfus­ca­tion of the Holo­caust and con­struc­tion of soci­eties that admire the worst of history’s racists.

To do so quite sim­ply implies that all the minor­ity cit­i­zens they butchered, or whose butcher­ing they sup­ported, were quite unwor­thy of con­tin­ued exis­tence. Inci­den­tally, all these coun­tries have real heroes from that dark­est moment in their his­tory: those (often the sim­plest of peo­ple) who just did the right thing and risked all to res­cue a neigh­bor from the Nazist estab­lish­ment col­lab­o­ra­tionist lead­er­ship of their own nation­al­ists.

...

Any viable solu­tion needs to take into account that it is a deeply divid­ed coun­try even in the absence of (ever-present) Putin­ist mis­chief. It there­fore needs to also take into account the many mil­lions of Russ­ian speak­ers who oppose the racial chau­vin­ism of some of the nation­al­ist elite now in or close to the gov­ern­ment, and who have very dif­fer­ent ideas about Twen­ti­eth Cen­tury his­to­ry.

That is the way for­ward, not the Cold War II non­sense of spread­ing the word that the west­ern­ers are pure angels and the east­ern­ers pure demons, not the neo­con non­sense that America’s great­ness depends on end­less for­eign mil­i­tary mis­ad­ven­tures in regime change that lead to long , unpre­dictable, and uncon­trol­lable cycles of vio­lence.

That Amer­ica shares with Rus­sia the mag­nif­i­cent lega­cy of hav­ing in tan­dem brought down Hitler’s empire is a her­itage worth invok­ing for build­ing bet­ter under­stand­ing, not a fact to be buried in def­er­ence to the far-right revi­sion of Holo­caust his­tory with which much of nation­al­ist East­ern Europe is so obsessed.

“Rus­sians Open Fire in Ukraine, NATO Reports” by Michael Hig­gins and Andrew R. Gor­don; The New York Times; 8/22/2014.

NATO offi­cials said that the Russ­ian mil­i­tary had moved artillery units inside Ukrain­ian ter­ri­to­ry in recent days and was using them to fire at Ukrain­ian forces. . . .

. . . . The NATO alle­ga­tions are based on intel­li­gence reports from sev­er­al alliance mem­bers, West­ern offi­cials said, and the alle­ga­tion gen­er­al­ly echoed Ukrain­ian claims in recent days of an expand­ing Russ­ian mil­i­tary involve­ment in sup­port of pro-Russ­ian rebels who are bat­tling to hold off a Ukrain­ian offen­sive.

A NATO spokes­woman, Oana Lunges­cu, also said that the alliance had receive mul­ti­ple reports of the direct involve­ment of Russ­ian air­borne, air defense and spe­cial oper­a­tions forces in East­ern Ukraine. . . .

“Is It War? Ukraine Con­flict Def­i­n­i­tion Soft­ens in West” by Gre­gory Vis­cusi; Bloomberg Busi­ness­week; 8/28/2014.

For gov­ern­ments in the Baltic states of Latvia and Lithua­nia, Rus­sia has invad­ed Ukraine and the two coun­tries are now at war. Head fur­ther west, and they’re less sure what to call it.

While all agree that a line has been crossed, U.S and NATO offi­cials pre­fer to speak of an “incur­sion.” French and Ger­man lead­ers have warned Pres­i­dent Vladimir Putin of fur­ther sanc­tions with­out defin­ing what Russ­ian forces have done.

“In the past 48 hours, we have tipped into a for­mal inva­sion,” Ian Brem­mer, pres­i­dent of the Eura­sia Group, said in a Bloomberg tele­vi­sion inter­view. “Rus­sia and Ukraine as sov­er­eign coun­tries are now at war and it’s going to be very dif­fi­cult for the Unit­ed States and Europe to deny that real­i­ty.”

Call­ing it war or an inva­sion would force the U.S. and Euro­pean Union to con­sider steps they’d nev­er be will­ing to take, such as com­mit­ting mil­i­tary forces, Brem­mer said. While sanc­tions have been imposed on some sec­tors of the Russ­ian econ­omy, Europe con­tin­ues to rely on Rus­sia for nat­ur­al-gas imports and Russ­ian trade with the EU was worth about $390 bil­lion last year.

“The EU appears to have exhaust­ed its polit­i­cally fea­si­ble options in the pre­vi­ous round” of sanc­tions, Iev­gen Voro­biov, an ana­lyst at the Pol­ish Insti­tute of Inter­na­tional Affairs in War­saw, said in a tele­phone inter­view.

Troop Buildup

Pro-Russ­ian insur­gents widened their attacks yes­ter­day on Ukraine gov­ern­ment forces, tak­ing sev­eral towns out­side their strong­holds of Donet­sk and Luhan­sk, includ­ing near the Sea of Azov. There are cur­rently 20,000 Russ­ian troops in the bor­der region, with 1,000 oper­at­ing inside Ukraine, a North Atlantic Treaty Orga­ni­za­tion mil­i­tary offi­cer esti­mated today.

Latvia’s For­eign Min­is­ter Edgars Rinke­vics said on Twit­ter that Russia’s actions amount to a “war” that should be tak­en up by the Unit­ed Nations Secu­rity Coun­cil. The For­eign Min­istry in Lithua­nia, anoth­er for­mer Sovi­et satel­lite state that’s now one of the EU’s 28 mem­bers, said it “strong­ly con­demns the inva­sion of Ukrain­ian ter­ri­tory by Russ­ian Fed­er­a­tion mil­i­tary forces, which has obvi­ously begun.” . . . .

The satel­lite imagery pur­port­ing to show Russ­ian armor and self-pro­pelled artillery inside of Ukraine comes from a pri­vate company–DigitalGlobe. That com­pa­ny was found­ed by key per­son­nel from Ronald Rea­gan’s Strate­gic Defense Ini­tia­tive.

“Dig­i­tal­Globe”; Wikipedia.com.

. . . . . Origins[edit]

World­View Imag­ing Cor­po­ra­tion was found­ed in Jan­u­ary 1992 in Oak­land, Cal­i­for­nia in antic­i­pa­tion of the 1992 Land Remote Sens­ing Pol­i­cy Act (enact­ed in Octo­ber 1992) which per­mit­ted pri­vate com­pa­nies to enter the satel­lite imag­ing business.[3] Its founder was Dr Wal­ter Scott, who was joined by co-founder and CEO Doug Gerull in late 1992. In 1993, the com­pa­ny received the first high res­o­lu­tion com­mer­cial remote sens­ing satel­lite license issued under the 1992 Act.[4] The com­pa­ny was ini­tial­ly fund­ed with pri­vate financ­ing from Sil­i­con Val­ley sources and inter­est­ed cor­po­ra­tions in N. Amer­i­ca, Europe, and Japan. Dr. Scott was head of the Lawrence Liv­er­more Lab­o­ra­to­ries “Bril­liant Peb­bles” and “Bril­liant Eyes” projects which were part of the Strate­gic Defense Ini­tia­tive. Doug Gerull was the exec­u­tive in charge of the Map­ping Sci­ences divi­sion at the Inter­graph Corporation.[5] The com­pa­ny’s first remote sens­ing license from the Unit­ed States Depart­ment of Com­merce allowed it to build a com­mer­cial remote sens­ing satel­lite capa­ble of col­lect­ing images with 3 m (9.8 ft) resolution.[3]

In 1995, the com­pa­ny became Earth­Watch Incor­po­rat­ed, merg­ing World­View with Ball Aero­space & Tech­nolo­gies Corp.‘s com­mer­cial remote sens­ing operations.[6] In Sep­tem­ber 2001, Earth­Watch became DigitalGlobe.[7] . . . . .

 “Doug Gerull”; linkedin.

. . . . . Carl Zeiss
Pri­vate­ly Held; 10,001+ employ­ees; Electrical/Electronic Man­u­fac­tur­ing indus­try
Jan­u­ary 1980 – 1985 (5 years) Toron­to / White Plains, NY

Discussion

One comment for “A Close Look at the Sources for the West’s “Intelligence” on Russian Action in Ukraine”

  1. Dig­i­tal­Globe:

    First Images From The World’s Most Pow­er­ful Com­mer­cial Satel­lite Are Stun­ning­ly Detailed

    Will Ore­mus, SlateAug. 30, 2014, 3:01 PM

    This month, a com­pa­ny called Dig­i­tal­Globe launched what was billed as the world’s sharpest com­mer­cial Earth-imag­ing satel­lite. Called WorldView‑3, the $500 mil­lion gad­get can snap images of the ground at a 30-cen­time­ter res­o­lu­tion. That’s sharp enough to see “not only a car, but the wind­shield and the direc­tion the car is going,” the com­pa­ny boast­ed in a press release—as well as home plate on a base­ball dia­mond, or the health of agri­cul­tur­al crops or even indi­vid­ual trees.

    In fact, it’s so sharp that the com­pa­ny isn’t allowed to show the satellite’s full-res­o­lu­tion images to the pub­lic yet. The U.S. gov­ern­ment recent­ly eased its restric­tions on high-res­o­lu­tion com­mer­cial satel­lite imagery, but the change won’t take full effect until Feb­ru­ary 2015. Still, the 40-cen­time­ter ver­sions you’ll see below rank among the sharpest yet seen by non-clas­si­fied eyes.

    Pics at link:

    http://www.businessinsider.com/the-first-images-from-the-worlds-most-powerful-commercial-satellite-are-shocking-detailed-2014–8

    Posted by Swamp | September 1, 2014, 9:26 am

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