Vladimir Putin, Party Crasher

g8-leaders

Above you see a photograph of seven men and a woman, they are the leaders of the so-called “G-8” nations:  From left to right you have Japan, Germany, Russia, Britain, USA, France, Canada and Italy. One of these eight sticks out like a sore thumb, and it isn’t Germany because it’s represented by the only female. It’s Russia, in the person of Vladimir Putin.

Russia isn’t in the top 8 nations of the world when ranked for GDP.  China, India and Brazil all have more valuable annual economic production than Russia does, yet they are excluded from the G-8 and Russia is included.  If you evaluate GDP not in aggregate but in per capita terms, Russia is just a pathetic joke.   Russia isn’t in the top 45 countries of the world for per capita nominal GDP.

More importantly, Russia doesn’t share the G-8 values.  Not one — not one — of the other seven nations in the G-8 recognized Ossetia and Abkhazia as states after Russia annexed their territories from Georgia. Each and every one of these other nations condemned Russia’s outrageous act of imperialism against Georgia, Germany most vociferously.  Putin recently went on Russia Today, the Kremlin’s state-sponsored propaganda network, to denounce the nations of the West and their values. He was particularly brutal in his attack on the USA, the leader of the G-8 and by far the most powerful country in the world, calling it a nation of racist mass-murderers. He painted Russia as being engaged in a heroic, lonely struggle against the evil of Western values in the modern world.

Which is all well and good. Putin can hate the West all he likes, after all he is a proud KGB spy who spent his entire adult life prior to the collapse of the USSR working hard to destroy the West. But why is his KGB fox in the G-7 chicken coop?  Six of the G-7 nations (all but Russia and Japan) are members of a military alliance, NATO, whose formative purpose was to oppose Russian aggression in Europe.  Isn’t it completely insane for this group to allow an unrepentant KGB spy to participate in their meetings?

As we reported not long ago, Russia doesn’t stack up to the other G-8 countries when viewed in terms of quality of life provided to its citizens. Here, once again, it’s the black sheep.  The OECD has shown conclusively that Russia brings up a miserable and distant rear in every aspect of life that would matter to a G-8 citizen.

There’s only one possible legitimate reason for Russia to be in the G-8, and that would be if the other G-7 nations were going to use Russia’s membership as leverage to publicly press forward a human-rights agenda against Russia.  But at the recent G-8 summit, the craven G-7 countries did not such thing.  They ignored Russia’s barbaric crackdown on homosexuals, they ignored Russia’s barbaric crackdown on political dissidents like Alexei Navalny and Sergei Guriev and Garry Kasparov, and they ignored Russia’s barbaric support for the genocidal dictatorship in Syria.

So now, all the citizens of the G-7 nations must hang their heads in shame as Putin and his KGB minions laugh at us for being the fools we are.

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Zigfeld Publishes Column #100 at PJM

Over at the massive Pajamas Media blog, LR publisher/founder Kim Zigfeld publishes her 100th column.  For the occasion, Russian dictator Vladimir Putin has thoughtfully offered June 2013, the very worst month of his entire life, for her to examine detail by excruciating detail.

The World is Turning Against Russia

“The Russians don’t qualify for the term ally or friend, I don’t think.”

That was German Constanze Stelzenmueller, a senior transatlantic fellow at the German Marshall Fund, talking.

She was echoing how, in stunningly bold way, Germany has aggressively turned against Russia. It even published a brutal attack on the Kremlin by the son of Putin’s most hated personal foe, Mikhail Khodorkovsky.  Germany has decided Russian barbarism is so appalling it can no longer be tolerated politely.  It is leading Europe into open revolt against Russia, and not only on the human rights front but also, most crucially, on the energy front.

Meanwhile, in an even more shocking move, France recognized the legitimacy of the rebel forces in Syria and called for arming them, directly flouting Russian policy towards one of its last remaining allies in the Middle East.

Even the U.S. Congress is getting into the act.  Ignoring the agenda of Russia’s best buddy Barack Obama, Congress is pushing forward with the Magnitsky human rights bill, and Russia is screaming bloody murder.

Remember what happened when Russia invaded Georgia and annexed Ossetia and Abkhazia? Remember how not one single nation in Europe recognized the annexation, and how Europe has remained united on that point to this day?  Russia’s barbaric course has unified Europe in horror, and now Russia is going to take the consequences.

Putin Teaches Russia a Lesson

Here’s part of what the Russian dictator recently told journalist Masha Gessen in a private interview recently published by the Russian website Bolshoi Gorod:

Это как с амфорами. Потом все начали кричать, что амфоры были подложены. Ну конечно, они были подложены! — он засмеялся над идиотами, которые вообще могли подумать, что это не так. — Но я же зачем нырял? Не для того, чтобы жабры раздувать, а чтобы люди знали свою историю. Вот даже вы, наверное, с вашим образованием, не знаете, что там, в этом месте, раньше был каганат, что степные народы приняли иудаизм. А потом все начали писать, что я, как мудак, достал подложенные амфоры. Но кто-то же начал читать!

“It’s like what happened with the amphorae. When the pictures came out, they all started shouting that amphorae were planted. Of course, they were planted!” He laughed at the idiots who might have thought it could have been otherwise.  “But what was the reason for my dive? Not to give my lungs a workout, but to help the people of our country learn their history.  I suspect that even you, with your lofty education, were not aware that in that location there used to be a khanate and that the steppe peoples converted to Judaism.  But they ignored all this, and depicted me as some kind of asshole who went around planting amphorae to trick people.  But meanwhile, the Russian people started reading their history!”

If this were any other world leader besides Putin, it would be hard to believe these statements were actually made.   But anyone familiar with Putin doesn’t even have to see his name in text in order to immediately recognize the speaker.

Putin is now so immune from accountability that he simply doesn’t care what he says or who hears him.  He feels perfectly comfortable openly admitting that he repeatedly lies to his fellow citizens, and equally at ease using the course language of the street thug he used to be.  His contempt for his fellow citizens is palpable. He believes the only way they can be educated is with trickery and deceit, the way a person might hide medicine in her dog’s food dish.

What other brazen lies has Putin told his fellow citizens?  How can he believe that Russia, any more than the USSR, can survive as a nation when its very foundation is based on falsehood? Rusia’s roads are getting more dangerous by the day, and Putin’s response is to launch a neo-Stalinist purge of the Duma.  Instead of developing policy, he develops lies and strategies to liquidate anyone who confronts him about them.

Nothing else could have been expected from handing unchecked power to a proud KGB spy.  If Russia repeats the mistakes of the past, it will repeat the pain of the past.