More to ignore, Book 50..........

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Feb 6, 2014
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Putin’s Total Isolation During the Pandemic Led to Bizarre Behavior
Irenaeus

napolean-putin.jpg


According to Mikhail Zygar, the author of “All the Kremlin’s Men: Inside the Court of Vladimir Putin”, Putin became totally isolated during the pandemic. Due to Putin’s phobia of becoming infected with COVID, he cut himself completely off from friends and staff. Vlad holed up with his old buddy, Oligarch Yuri Kovalchuk at Putin’s palatial dacha in Valdai. Kovalchuk is known as Putin’s personal banker and the most influential person in Putin’s entourage. Putin and Kovalchuk share a worldview that combines Orthodox Christian mysticism, anti-American conspiracy theories, a disdain for democracy, and a belief that a Russian master race is destined to establish a great Russian Empire.

Having these two cut off from the world for more than 6 months while they reinforced each other's batshit crazy worldviews, had some very negative effects on Putin. Putin maintains isolation even now as aides must quarantine for a week before they can meet with him. This is the reason for the infamous images of Putin at the end of an absurdly long table in meetings.



It seems Putin came out of his retreat with Kovalchuk with a newfound missionary zeal and a disdain for his old guard. He publicly humiliated them on Russian TV before the invasion. He singled out Sergey Naryshkin, the head of the Foreign Intelligence Service (now in jail) for a dressing down that had him stuttering as he tried to find a way to walk back what he had said and agree with the supreme leader.



Putin was determined to avenge the USSR's humiliation. Putin is like an abusive husband who takes it as a personal humiliation and an affront that his wife who he abused for years has left him. The Baltic states, Eastern Europe, Ukraine, and the former Soviet Republics in Asia would all be returned to Russian domination. Putin was ready to take his place in history. However, years of being told what he wanted to hear by a circle of ass-kissers and sycophants created a situation where Vlad had not the slightest clue what the state of his military was and what the reality on the ground in Ukraine was. He was convinced by his own propaganda that the woke militaries of the West were no match for his he-man thugs and war criminals. Biden was a senile old fool who was no match for Putin’s strategic genius and the President of Ukraine… a comedian? What was he going to do when confronted with the shock and awe of Putin’s mighty blitzkrieg.

For an insight into Putin’s thinking on Ukraine, you can refer to the Russian philosopher who is known as Putin’s brain, Aleksandr Gelyevich Dugin:

“This is not a war with Ukraine. It’s a confrontation with globalism as an integrated planetary phenomenon. It’s a confrontation on all levels — geopolitical and ideological. Russia rejects everything in globalism — unipolarity, Atlanticism, on the one hand, and liberalism, anti-tradition, technocracy, Great Resetization in one word, in another. Of course, all European leaders are part of the Atlantic liberal elite. And we’re at war with just that.”

If the language sounds vaguely familiar, Steve Bannon is also a fan of Dugin.

Putin has been living in a bubble, spinning absurd Qanon-level conspiracy theories that are faithfully repeated by his media flunkies and minions. I expect he is in a state of shock at the craptastic results of his brilliant strategy. He has constructed a brittle and rigid organization founded on lies, corruption, and worship of Putin that is completely incapable of adjusting to reality. They seem to be stuck on tilt repeating threats that considering their real-world performance are laughable. They are also spinning even more delusional conspiracy theories to explain their failure. They don’t have a clue of how to adapt or pivot to extricate themselves from the quagmire Putin has created. In Ukraine, they look to be doing more of the same and praying for a different result.



I don’t expect this to change or for Putin to back down so long as he is at the helm of Russia. Russia is not quite as isolated as the West would like to think. Yes, being cut off from half the world’s GDP will be devastating but countries representing a majority of the world’s population abstained or supported Russia at the UN. As far as Putin is concerned Russia’s isolation and the exodus of Russia’s best and brightest will ‘purify’ Russia. Vlad is now living in his own universe and is pursuing his goals with the mindset of a religious fanatic.

Putin still has a large friendly global audience and he still has a large 5th column in the US and Europe. Putin wannabe, Victor Orban won in Hungary. What happens if Le Pen wins in France and the Republicans take congress? This is not over. If this war drags on the tide may yet turn for Putin, if not in Ukraine then in some of the countries Ukraine is depending on to keep their war effort going. The West and Ukraine need a quick and crushingly decisive victory. The Ukrainians have proven themselves capable. The West really needs to get the arms required to finish this quickly into Ukraine's hands as if it were their lives on the line. Because the reality is, they are.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
111,233
18,762
1


......As alleged in the indictment, Babakov, a member of the Russian legislature, Vorobev, his Chief of Staff, and Plisyuk, another member of Babakov’s staff, used a nonprofit organization based in Russia, the Institute for International Integration Studies, as a front for this global foreign influence campaign to advance Russia’s foreign policy objectives. Through these operations aimed at influencing the course of international affairs, the defendants worked to weaken U.S. partnerships with European allies, undermine Western sanctions and promote Russia’s illicit actions designed to destroy the sovereignty of Ukraine. The defendants schemed to affect U.S. policy towards Russia through staged events, paid propaganda and the recruitment of at least one American citizen (CC-1) to do their bidding in an unofficial capacity and without notice to the Attorney General, as required by law. In pursuit of these goals, the defendants sought to co-opt U.S. and European politicians and to influence public opinion in their favor, using American and European citizens as their proxies to validate them, bring them access to power, evade sanctions and obscure their true objective to advance Russia’s foreign policy.

Among other things, the defendants contacted members of the U.S. Congress from 2012 into 2017 to seek meetings and to offer free travel to at least one Congressmember on behalf of Babakov, as well as other foreign officials aligned and associated with Babakov. For example, in 2012, at the direction of the defendants, CC-1 sought to secure a meeting for Babakov with multiple members of Congress, including by offering an “all expenses paid” trip to a particular Congressmember to meet with European politicians and receive “an award.” Congressmembers rebuffed these efforts.

In March 2017, the defendants sought to arrange a meeting for Babakov with a member of the U.S. Congress in pursuit of the objective of “strengthen[ing] the ties of cooperation between” Russia and the United States. To secure that meeting, the defendants, through CC-1, transmitted a letter drafted by CC-1 and signed by Babakov to a particular Congressmember.

Also in March 2017, the defendants contacted at least one member of the U.S. Congress to offer free travel to a Babakov-affiliated conference in Yalta, part of Russia-controlled Crimea, as a service to benefit the purported “Prime Minister of Crimea,” Sergey Aksyonov. Aksyonov was organizing and attending the conference, and had been sanctioned by the Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) as a Specially Designated National (SDN) since 2014 based on his role in actions and policies threatening the sovereignty of Ukraine. The defendants worked together and with their associates to organize, facilitate and promote the Yalta conference, including by soliciting Americans to attend and present at the conference and receive funding from Aksyonov’s organizing committee, for the benefit of Akysonov and his Russia-backed purported government of Crimea. The Congressmember did not accept the offer..........

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