Re: Russia's supplying Saddam with that jamming equipment.
Was Putin culpable for this? Or was it just a unethical company?
Putin and his KGB cronies were absolutely responsible.
"The Communist Party received lavish funding from Mikhail Khodorkovsky before the 2003 poll and had four key Yukos personnel on its list _ a fact conveniently ignored in the free Western media."
That's because Khodorkovsky was put in his position by the Communists (like KGB Putin). Unfortunately for Khodorkovsky, he has already found out what the Communists have in store for those who they use as middle men to do "business" (and thus be tainted) with the West.
According to Anatoly Golitsyn, the most important defector to ever defect from the USSR, these people would be used, just as the Soviets are using the Eastern Bloc countries, to lure Western Europe (and the US) into what Golitsyn calls The Final Phase:
THE WORLDWIDE COMMUNIST FEDERATION [should they--Putin's KGB Cronies--succeed taken from Golitsyns book New Lies For Old, 1984]
Integration of the Communist Bloc would follow the lines envisaged by Lenin when the Third Communist International was founded. That is to say, the Soviet Union and China would not absorb one another or other Communist states. All the countries of the European and Asiatic Communist zones, together with new Communist states (should Russia succeed) in Europe and the Third World, would join a supranational economic and political Communist federation (this is precisely what the Soviets have in mind for the impending EU collective). Soviet-Albanian, Soviet-Yugoslav, and Soviet-Romanian disputes and differences would be resolved in the wake, or possibly in advance of, Sino-Soviet reconciliation (Golitsyn goes to great lengths in previous chapters to show how the split between the Soviets and the Chinese was completely healed immediately after Stalins death however, they continued the illusion of a split to dupe the West into backing alternating sides, depending on circumstances). The political, economic, military, diplomatic, and ideological cooperation between all the Communist states, at present partially concealed, would become clearly visible. There might even be public acknowledgment that the splits and disputes were long-term disinformation operations that had successfully deceived the imperialist powers. The effect on Western morale can be imagined (the Soviets have employed this tactic on numerous occasions).
In the new worldwide Communist federation the present different brands of Communism would disappear, to be replaced by a uniform, rigorous brand of Leninism. The process would be painful. Concessions made in the name of economic and political reform would be withdrawn. Religious and intellectual dissent would be suppressed. Nationalism and all other forms of genuine oppositions would be crushed. THOSE WHO HAD TAKEN ADVANTAGE OF DETENTE TO ESTABLISH FRIENDLY WESTERN CONTACTS WOULD BE REBUKED OR PERSECUTED LIKE THOSE SOVIET OFFICERS WHO WORKED WITH THE ALLIES DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR. In new Communist state for example, in France, Italy, and the Third Worldthe alienated classes would be reeducated. Show trials of imperialist agents would be staged. Action would be taken against nationalist and social democratic leaders, party activists, former civil servants, officers, and priests. The last vestiges of private enterprise and ownership would be obliterated. Nationalization of industry, finance, and agriculture would be completed. In fact, all the totalitarian features familiar from the early stages of the Soviet revolution and the postwar Stalinist years in Eastern Europe might be expected to reappear, especially in those countries newly won for Communism. Unchallenged and unchallengeable, a true Communist monolith would dominate the world.
The Eurasian Axis
Dr. Alexandr Nemets
Monday, Oct. 20, 2003
On Oct. 8-9, a German-Russian summit took place in Yekaterinburg city, also known as the capital of Ural; this was the sixth German-Russian summit during President Vladimir Putins regime, i.e., in three and a half years.
Ministers of Foreign Affairs Ivanov and Fisher, Ministers of Internal Affairs Gryzlov and Shilli, Ministers of Trade and Economy Gref and Klement, etc., participated in the summit. In addition, German Chancellor Gerhard sSchroeder brought a group of 50 leading German businessmen, including the presidents of Ruhrgas, Deutsche Bank and Lufthansa Airline. In 1995, Russian President Boris Yeltsin proposed to French President Jacques Chiraq and German Chancellor Helmut Kohl to have a summit in Yekaterinburg for the purpose of establishing a new German-French-Russian political axis. This summit didn't take place.
In March 2003, during the Iraqi War (when the Paris-Berlin-Moscow-Beijing axis, for the first time ever, went from the darkness to the light), Putin sent Schroeder a new invitation to visit Yekaterinburg. It is unknown whether French President Chiraq received the same invitation. However, Schroeder almost certainly represented, at the last summit, the interests of France in addition to Germany.
In 2002, German-Russian trade reached $24 billion and could slightly increase in 2003. By the end of 2003, the accumulated volume of German investment in Russia reached $7 billion. Germany is the largest creditor of Russia: it owns 40 percent of Russian debts to the London Club, or $17 billion. Germany is one of the few countries investing money in the Russian manufacturing industry. The number of Russian enterprises with German participation reached 2,500.
It should be stressed that Germany receives from Russia 23 billion cubic meters of natural gas annually, mostly from Gazprom Corp.; this satisfies at least one-third of the German demand for natural gas.
Presently, Russia sells natural gas to Germany and other European customers for about $100 per 1,000 cubic meters, while Russian customers pay (if based on the official exchange rate) only $20 per 1,000 cubic meters. Putin and Schroeder discussed ways to raise Russias internal prices for energy, including gas, up to the world level.
In this case, Russias internal consumption of natural gas would definitely drop just as it already happened with crude oil and oil products and Russia would receive huge resources for gas export to Germany and other EU countries.
The two sides signed agreements about facilitating the issuing of visas and expanding cooperation between Germany and Russias most-western Baltic enclave of Kaliningrad. They also signed an agreement for transportation, through Russia, of German military personnel and goods to Afghanistan.
Remarkably, the two sides discussed the problems of Iraq, North Korea and Iran, and found how close their positions are; the differences are small if any. And the joint position of these two countries in these areas differs greatly from Americas.
Many years ago, French leaders produced the idea of a "United Europe" from the Atlantic to Ural. However, this United Europe has nothing to do with American interests.
Simultaneously with the summit in Yekaterinburg, on Oct. 10, Speaker of the Iranian Parliament Mehdi Karubi met, in Tehran, a delegation from the German Bundestag. Karubi emphasized during the meeting that the Iranian nuclear program is "transparent, peaceful and contains no threat to the world."
He also stressed that "criminal actions of Zionists contribute to instability in the Middle East." It looks as if these statements elicited no serious objections from the German guests. Speaker Mekhdi also said that development and expansion of political and economic ties with the EU, particularly with Germany, is a priority for Tehran.
Volker Ruhe, the head of the Bundestag delegation, supported the expansion of ties between Germany and Iran and "highly estimated the recent processes of democracy expanding in Iran." He also appealed to Irans role in local conflict solving.
These were just two messages, from many, characterizing relations among Paris, Berlin, Moscow, Beijing, Tehran and Pyongyang. The Paris-Berlin-Moscow-Beijing axis is growing and strengthening; and the nice regimes in Tehran and Pyongyang are becoming its clients.
This is bad by itself, but the deliberate ignoring of this reality by official Washington, D.C., is even worse. We know that the Bush administration concentrates all its efforts on solving the problems of postwar Iraq. However, very probably, just the activity of some participants and clients of the Eurasian Axis especially those very interested in high oil prices on the world market and very uninterested in restoring the Iraqi oil industry effectively blocks these efforts.
In March 2003, when American-Russian relations were at their low ebb, Gleb Pavlovsky, one of Putins "dark strategists," published in the major Moscow papers, including the official Russian army paper Krasnaya Zvezda, several articles, which can be condensed to the following: Russia should help America to exhaust itself in the struggle for world hegemony. Eventually America will crash as the USSR crashed and will crawl back to the North American continent.
Despite all the sweet words between Washington and Moscow, the Kremlin continues working only in this direction. And not without success: Look at the figures of the federal deficit. Indeed, for how long will America be capable of maintaining its presence, particularly a military presence, in Iraq and other key regions of the world?
And would it be possible for America to take even a step ahead in the Middle East, i.e., to increase its political and military presence in Trans-Caucasus region (in Georgia and Azerbaijan) and in Central Asia? Kremlin and the entire Eurasian Axis spare no effort to prevent the strengthening of the American position in this vital zone. And without such a strengthening, any hopes for a changed situation in Iran and termination of the Iranian nuclear-missile program would fail.
On Sept. 25-28, the leading Beijing papers published a series of comments on the Bush-Putin summit. They can be condensed to the following:
a) Putin escapes direct confrontation with America. Moreover, he intends to get as much money from America and the entire West in the form of hydrocarbons export and Western investment in Russia as possible.
b) Putin pretends to be "a friend of America" and repeats phrases about "joint Russian-American struggle against terrorism"; this allows Putin to run wild in Chechnya and the surrounding Muslim regions of North Caucasus, without problems with the West.
c) However, in some principal areas, such as helping modernize the Iranian military or preventing any American action against North Korea, Putin is adamant: President Bush will get nothing here.
It is necessary to admit that the conclusions of the Beijing media are correct. Putin merely "plays a friend of America" and, at the same time, works for solidifying and expanding the Eurasian Axis, the new world pole, generally hostile to the USA and its close allies.
Remarkably, these articles in the Beijing papers even didn't touch the possible influence of the Bush-Putin summit over the huge and still growing supplies of Russian warfare and dual-use technology to China. This is a real sacred cow for the Kremlin.
As far as I know it was a company. Hell we had several of our own, one even from Texas, who were making quite a few bucks off the whole scheme, no prosecutions here. It was a dirty scheme, no doubt, and with the UN holding the gate open, it attracted plenty of vultures, to include a few of our own American vultures.
Politics often is complex and far from black and white. We should see event in the context from the time event take place.
Even if Russia did send some supplies, Iraq was a client state of Russia for years long before the US invasion and Russia has seen Saudies as the source of terrorism (how many Saudies were among WTC bombers, did US provided weapons and training to the Saudies?). Under Reagan it was USA which supported Saddam Hussein and until now USA was main purchaser of Iraqi oil.
On the other hand Russia (together with Iran) was supporting Northern Alliance the main enemy of Taleban. Northern Allaince defeated Taliban on USA behalf after USA turned against the later.
BTW, if John Walker Lindh lawers were really shrewd they would say that their client was also motivated by American patriotism - at the time when he joined Islamists, the Northern Alliance was the enemy, and Taliban had some US links!
First of all, it's the government's responsibility to prevent these things from happening. And Moskow's official position was that no military hardware was being supplied to Iraq. As such the burden of proof is on Putin to show that he's blameless - that he did everything reasonably within his powers to put a stop to it. The evidence of that is wanting, unless someone can point to any reports of prosecutions of those companies and their officials for their activities. Their response to our inquiries was to deny that any such thing was happening, and to not-so-subtly accuse us of setting up a "humanitarian catastrophe" in Iraq.
It shoud be further remembered that the Russian government, right along with the French, was heavily involved in back-door oil contracts with the Iraqi regime.