There’s a little game I’ve been playing with every news story about Russia I've seen or read since Alexander Litvinenko was poisoned.
The game simply involves doing a Google search for the name of every Russian quoted in the story combined with the name ‘Berezovsky’
Names such as Stansilav Belkovsky, ‘The National Strategic Institute of Moscow’, the ‘The International Foundation for Civil Liberties’, Yuri Felshtinsky (quoted in Counterpunch no less) and, above all, Alexander Goldfarb…
Alex Goldfarb is frequently described in the press as a ‘family friend’ of the murdered ex-FSB assassin and freelance 'security consultant' Alexander Litivinenko (described by one stupefyingly well-informed member of the audience on Question Time last night as ‘a good man’) and has co-authored a book with Litvinenko’s widow - Death of a Dissident: The Poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko and the Return of the KGB (Hardcover).
And, strangely enough, virtually all of the Russians quoted as first-hand sources of how Russia under Putin is sliding into barbarity turn out to be
You could write a book about the fascinating Mr Berezovsky, though I wouldn’t advise it. The last person to do that got shot.
Suffice to say, unlike all of the Muslims being arrested in this country on terrorism conspiracy (ho ho) charges, Boris has helped fuck up the way of life and democracy of an entire nation and he is attempting to orchestrate the violent overthrow of that nation’s democratically elected government, behind the protection of a British passport sold/ given to him on the basis that he is a political refugee...
Boris Berezovsky is to honesty and democracy what Gary Glitter is to the child care industry
But strangely, media whores like fellow Question Time panelist Melanie Phillips don't seem that fussed about London becoming a home from home for anti-democratic foreign criminals - unless that is a) they don't exist, or b) their skin happens to be brown
(Possibly the most amusing moment in last night’s Question Time was listening to people complain about the Russians not allowing murder suspect Andrei Lugavoi to be extradited to the UK. Someone had the temerity to point out that the UK has resisted requests to extradite Berezovsky to Russia for years but that was neatly dealt with by general agreement that the Russian legal system was crap and ours was ace. So, double standards are OK provided they are British double standards)
Curiously, in spite of a CV that would have made Al Capone blush, Boris and his ‘associates’ are quoted verbatim in the British Media and have contributed in no small part to the latest outbreak of anti-Russian feeling being stoked up by those media.
The hypocrisy being displayed by the Western Media and Politicians is breath-taking. When you actually try and quantify just what it is that Putin’s Russia is doing that is supposedly so repugnant to decent people, especially when compared to the actions of our own governments, it’s difficult to get a handle on what the problem is...
- Putin was democratically elected – by a stonking majority in comparison to, say, Tony Blair
- Aside from the Chechen mess that Putin inherited from the Saintly Boris Yeltsin, Russia hasn’t invaded anywhere on the basis of lies, unlike, er, Tony Blair
- All of the ordinary Russians I've met, whilst cautious about Putin becoming a dictator, are profoundly thankful that he stopped their country imploding, unlike what ordinary people in this country think about, er, whatshisface...
The Russians have, however, kicked out a few (though not all) oligarchs, got a little pissy about the Americans ringing their country with missile bases, and they are using their copious energy resources as a geopolitical tool on the international stage
Don’t they realise that having their country turn to shit is a price worth paying for Western energy security?
All this talk in the West of civil rights and democracy in Russia is a lie. None of the people spinning this rubbish care two fucks about the Russian people, no more than they cared about the Iraqi people. They didn't give a toss when Russia was slipping into the void and I doubt very much if ordinary people in Russia would want to see their government ever talking advice from the West again.
The West had the option of investing in Russia in the 1990s but chose to crater its economy instead. And the forward thinking people in our establishment know that down the line we’re going to have to buy essential commodities off the Russians with nothing to offer in exchange except for our own increasingly worthless currencies.
And, bizarrely, such diverse, supposedly libertarian, characters as Peter Tatchell and Craig Murray have spontaneously (?) joined in the Russia baiting. Peter Tatchell has always been a self-publicising tool so his behaviour comes as no surprise. However, along with his recent suggestion that punching policemen on the nose will stop the encroachment on our civil liberties (a very curious thing for a former establishment figure to say), Murray’s recent writings on Russia have been a, ummm, disappointment.
As far as many Russians are concerned the antics of Berezovsky and his ‘associates’ are so crude and so transparent that they actually suspect him of working with Putin (contrary to popular belief, Putin didn’t crack down on all the Oligarchs and many are thriving in Russia)
Apparently, British journalists don’t think there’s anything crude or transparent about Berezovsky at all and faithfully repeat any old crap Goldfarb puts out on his behalf without even a whiff of criticism or context
Stuff like this picture…
or Litvinenko’s surprisingly wordy death bed statement
... because staging pictures and extracting statements from someone dying from late-stage radiation-induced cancer is the first thing close family friends would want to do
Is it that our journalists are simply out of their depth when faced by such Machiavellian goings-on and reduced to mere 'repeaters' as a consequence?
Sorry, I’m not buying it.
And here’s where, as a unrepentant Conspiraloon™, I diverge from the majority of people when considering the role of our Press in this shameful business. I just cannot accept that all of the people shoveling this stuff are that ignorant
If there’s one thing Berezovsky has shown us in the UK it’s how easy it is to hoodwink or buy our press with the aid of a compliant establishment
Forget worries over the freedom and objectivity of the press in Putin's Russia what about this country?
Five minutes of research would encourage even the most mentally-challenged but honourable journalist to inject at least a little scepticism into their coverage. And there is something more than a little outrageous about quoting people as being representatives of sham organisations such as the ‘International Foundation for Civil Liberties’ without at least mentioning that they are the creation of a billionaire exile wanted in his home country for theft and fraud. You wouldn’t get away with putting an unknown football commentator on television on the basis that he’s the spokesperson for the made-up ‘International Football Skills Foundation’ - total membership two people.
But there again, your average brain dead cunt takes football more seriously than matters of life and death. Probably because the sheer irrelevance and triviality of sport means that it’s OK to follow it in depth. No nasty surprises that will fuck up your perception of the world and the part you play in it.
OK that’s not entirely fair. Many people I meet are receptive to alternative explanations for current events to the ones permitted in the mainstream press, provided those accounts are cogent. However, they don’t have the time to dig this stuff out for themselves. And that’s the challenge. How to reach to them?