Monday, 2 March 2015

Stephen Cohen on Ukraine

US Mulls Replacement for Poroshenko – Stephen Cohen


The political climate in Ukraine is extremely precarious as the situation in Debaltseve and the implementation of the Minsk peace accords indicate that Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is not fully in control in Kiev and his overall position is pretty shaky, says prominent American historian Stephen Cohen



1 March, 2014

President Poroshenko is not a strong leader capable of implementing his own strategy, and on many key issues he is forced to depend on other people’s opinion, both inside and abroad, Stephen Cohen, a scholar of Russian studies at Princeton University and New York University, said during the recent John Batchelor Show — a radio news magazine hosted by American author and radio personality John Bachelor.

Implementing the hard-won Minsk accords may prove a near-impossible task for Poroshenko given the number of dyed-in-the-wool ultranationalists now in high places in Kiev in the wake of the recent parliamentary elections.

These people will under no circumstances talk to the pro-independence forces in Donbas.

Moreover, the radical Right Sector organization said loud and clear that they did not recognize the terms of the ceasefire agreed in Minsk. The leaders of the volunteer battalions are no less determined to fight to the bitter end.

Hard as Poroshenko is trying to picture the Debaltseve debacle as a victory, few people are ready to buy it. The battalion commanders openly challenge the authority of their Commander-in-Chief, who, in turn, can do nothing about it because he and his government depend much on the volunteer units fighting in Donbas.

Whether there is a “fascist coup” now brewing in Kiev is hard to say, but the great deal of power wielded by the radicals is something Poroshenko and his friends in the US and the EU should really worry about, Stephen Cohen warned.

Poroshenko’s Army is Too Weak to Control Eastern Ukraine – German Media
He sees Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk as the most viable candidate to replace Poroshenko. In a telephone linkup with the US Ambassador in Kiev, Geoffrey Pyatt, early last year Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland mentioned Yatsenyuk as a good choice for Ukrainian Prime Minister.

Stephen Cohen believes that Washington still holds Yatsenyuk in very high regard as a man who knows how the economy works and could become the “IMF’s man” in Kiev.

What makes the present Ukrainian prime minister even more attractive to Washington is his hardline stance toward Moscow and a desire to build a wall around Ukraine to “defend” it from Russia, Stephen Cohen emphasized.

Kiev violates peace deal

Kiev Regroups Heavy Arms Near Contact Line, Violates Minsk Deal - Donetsk

According to the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, Kiev is redeploying withdrawn heavy weaponry near the contact line



1 March, 2014

DONETSK (Sputnik) — Ukraine's government troops are regrouping heavy arms near the line of contact, the deputy commander of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic's (DPR) forces said Sunday.

"Unfortunately, DPR intelligence is spotting new cases of withdrawn Ukrainian units being redeployed [in] violation of Minsk agreements, 20-30 kilometers [12-18 miles] from the line of contact," Eduard Basurin said at a news briefing.

The official also flatly denied accusations that DPR was secretly turning back its large-caliber arms to positions from which they had been previously pulled away.
"These assumptions are untrue and cannot serve as justification for Ukraine's non-compliance with its obligations to withdraw weapons," Basurin said.

Washington plans to use Western private military contractors to deliver weapons to Ukraine. Once arms are delivered, these companies will send their “volunteers” who will come to make good use of these weapons.

Earlier in the day, Basurin, along with a self-proclaimed Luhansk People's Republic (LPR) official, told RIA Novosti that both DPR and LPR have completed heavy weaponry withdrawal in adherence to the deal with Kiev.

Basurin added at the briefing that his command passed on the details of the withdrawal to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe's (OSCE) observers.

The agreement, dubbed the Minsk Accord, was signed after extensive talks on February 12 in the Belarusian capital. It specifies 13 measures to end the conflict in east Ukraine.

Worked out by the German, French, Russian and Ukrainian leaders, it includes the aforementioned pullback of heavy arms, a general ceasefire and an all-for-all prisoner exchange.

Sunday marks the 14th day since the ceasefire came into force and the last day of the large-caliber arms withdrawal envisioned by the deal.




Ukrainian MP Proposes Law to Jail Critics of the Regime


The bill, tabled by Konstantin Mateichenko of the Popular Front and the commander of a volunteer battalion, fighting in eastern Ukraine, envisages jail terms of up to three years for “intentional actions aimed at undermining the authority of the national government”.

THe Nemtsov memorial march in Moscow

Thousands mourn slain opposition politician Nemtsov at Moscow march


RT,
1 March, 2014

Thousands gathered at a rally in commemoration of the murdered opposition figure Boris Nemtsov in the Russian capital. Demonstrators have marched through the center of Moscow, crossing over the bridge near the Kremlin where the politician was shot dead.

At the beginning of the rally, Moscow police said around 16,500 people were taking part. After it ended at about 5 pm local time, police said that according to their estimates at least 21,000 people attended the event. Opposition member Sergey Davidis said nearly 50,000 people participated in the march, RIA Novosti reported.

The rally’s participants marched in silence. Those in the front row were holding a banner reading, “Heroes don’t die and these bullets target each of us.”

View image on Twitter
Mourners reach bridge where was killed http://on.rt.com/64t8sj 
Many were carrying flags, flowers and copies of Nemtsov’s portrait. The mourners visited the site of Nemstov’s murder, which has been cordoned off by police.

Even though the march was in memory of the slain opposition figure, there were several people who carried posters with calls urging the authorities to free Ukrainian pilot Nadezhda Savchenko, including her lawyer. She had been detained by Moscow on charges of connection to Russian journalists’ murders in Donbass.

View image on Twitter
Thousands of Russian flags with black ribbons but everyone once in a while blue and yellow
Police also prevented about a dozen nationalists, some wearing masks, carrying black-yellow-and-white flags, from participating in the march.

View image on TwitterView image on Twitter
Китайгород сейчас. Готовятся к шествию памяти Немцова.

In St Petersburg at least 6,000 people gathered for a commemoration rally at Marsovo Polye, local police said. Mourning events were also held in other Russian cities, including Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Perm, Orenburg, Tomsk and Khabarovsk.

The mourning march is instead of the Vesna (Spring) opposition rally, that had been planned for Sunday, but was canceled due to Nemtsov’s death.

The slain politician was one of the organizers of the rally and called on people to come join it in an interview given just hours before he was shot.

Thousands of people have laid flowers at the scene of the murder.





Boris Nemtsov was shot several times just before midnight Friday, while he walked across the Bolshoy Moskvoretsky Bridge leading from the Red Square, allegedly in the company of a Ukrainian model, Anna Duritskaya.

It was first reported that the fatal shots were fired from a passing-by vehicle. Later a CCTV footage of the incident emerged, which suggests that a killer could have been waiting for Nemtsov on the bridge and then escaped on a car parked nearby.

The footage is a low-resolution one and only allows to distinguish the cars on the bridge and the figures of people moving along it.





Investigators are currently looking into five possible motives behind the assassination, according to Vladimir Markin, spokesman for the Investigative Committee. 

The politician’s murder could have been a provocation to destabilize the political situation in Russia, Markin said. It could have also been linked to the threats Nemtsov received over his stance on Charlie Hebdo shootings in Paris or the current civil war in the east of Ukraine. The politician’s business activities and a possible assault related to his personal life are also being looked into.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has promised that everything will be done to punish those responsible for the organization and execution of the murder, which he described as “vile and cynical.”


The crime has been condemned by leading politicians in and outside Russia, with US President Barack Obama, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel urging a thorough investigation of the crime. 

Nemtsov, 55, came into the spotlight as governor of Nizhny Novgorod region from 1991-97. He also served as energy minister and deputy prime minister under former President Boris Yeltsin. 

After 1998 he participated in the creation of several liberal movements and parties, serving as a member of parliament. 

Since 2012, he co-chaired the liberal party RPR-PARNAS (Republican Party of Russia – People's Freedom Party). 

He ran for mayor of Sochi in 2013, but lost the race with only 13.6 percent of the popular vote. The same year, he was elected a member of the Yaroslavl Region parliament. 

The Russian Investigative Committee is at the moment considering several crime scenarios, with some of them linking the politician's murder to events in Ukraine, the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack in Paris and Nemtsov's business activity.





Ukrainian lawmaker Goncharenko took part in the violent events in southern Ukraine's Odessa on May 2, 2014, when far-right activists blocked anti-EU protesters inside the city's House of Trade Unions and set the building on fire that resulted in 48 deaths




On the hunt for a killer

Witness Describes Killer of Russian
According to the Russian Interior Ministry, Nemtsov was killed in the center of Moscow at 11:40 p.m. local time on Friday (20:40 GMT), when several shots were fired at him from a passing car.



1 March, 2015

Two key witnesses in the case of the murder of Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov testified and described the killer, according to Russian media. A physical description of the killer has been made.

Police are searching for a 170-175 centimeters tall man with a short haircut. He was wearing blue jeans and a brown sweater.

The Russian Investigative Committee plans to conduct additional investigating actions with Anna Duritskaya who was with Nemtsov when he was killed.

According to the Russian Interior Ministry, Nemtsov was killed in the center of Moscow at 11:40 p.m. local time on Friday (20:40 GMT), when several shots were fired at him from a passing car.

People place flowers on February 28, 2015 at the spot, where Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov was shot dead, near Saint-Basil's Cathedral, in the center of Moscow.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the Russian Investigative Committee, the Interior Ministry and the Federal Security Service to set up an investigative team to look into the murder of Boris Nemtsov.


Putin said the murder was "vile and cynical" and claimed that it was likely a contract killing.

A murder foretold

If I was, for example, Boris Nemtsov, I would try to a either leave Russia a few days before the elections, or ask for asylum in one of the Russian prisons.”
A chilling Nemtsov's murder prophecy from 2012


March 1, 2015
Translated by Kristina Rus



- Should we expect a new wave of protest rallies or is it going to dissipate? Is the opposition preparing any surprises?


-After the presidential elections of March 4 the protest activity will increase. I am not ruling out, that during that period, a high profile crime may take place - something like the murder on October 7, 2006 of the journalist Anna Stepanovna Mazepa, better known under her husband's name "Politkovskaya". She was killed on Putin's birthday, in order to "congratulate" him this way. Today there are many people in the opposition movement, who could provide a very good advertising for the anti-state movement. If I was, for example, Boris Nemtsov, I would try to a either leave Russia a few days before the elections, or ask for asylum in one of the Russian prisons. Better to spend a few days behind bars, then to end up in a grave.. Today there are a lot of people, for whom Nemtsov is much more usefull dead, then alive...

Nemtsov's girlfriend suffering from amnesia

The model Anna Duritskaya claims partial amnesia
While giving her evidence the key witness of the shooting of the opposition leader reported that she was in a state of shock





The investigators questioned the main witness murder of a prominent politician Boris Nemtsov, but 23-year-old model was not able to share with detectives useful information for them. Anna Duritskaya complained that she is in a state of shock and did not even remember the murderer or the car in which he rode.

Meanwhile, investigators learned the details Boris Nemtsov's personal life and Anna Duritskaya. The opposition politician met a girl in Turkey three years ago, who came once a month to visit Nemtsov in  Moscow.

- Duritskaya told that she flew flight from Kiev to Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport, where she was met by Nemtsov with his driver. From the airport, they went to his apartment on Malaya Ordynka. In the evening she went to one of the Thai salons, and the Germans went on a radio interview - said a source in the investigation, - In the evening, at 21:30, the pair met in a cafe "Bosco" in GUM to dinner together.

When the couple went home on foot through Moskvoretsky bridge, a light-coloured car stopped next to them , from which a man ran and fired several shots at the opposition politician.

- After the shooting of a man sat back in the car and drove away. She did not remember  any signs of the criminal, the car's model, name or registratio. She did not remember, referring to her state of shock - the source added.

It is possible that to restore the memory of 23-year-old model need help from therapists. According to experts, the girl may actually be a short-term memory loss.

- A person receiving a head injury in an accident or impact can briefly lose their memory. In a stressful situation a person can have stress amnesia. In most cases, it passes after a short time - says psychotherapist Vladimir Faynzelberg . There are several ways to restore memory -  to calm down and relax, to try to write down  their thoughts - are triggered muscle memory, as well as hypnosis or special preparations. The last two methods are not used by medical specialists.

The chief witоness of the murder of the murder turned down officila help, the girl's lawyer said . In addition, Anna Duritskaya said she wanted to return to her native city, Kiev. However, the investigators intend to interrogate the girl, because she is a key witness to a crime. As reported , there is reason to spend time with her ​​in further investigations.

According to media reports, the model already talked Consul of Ukraine in Russia Gennady Breskalenko. Some media reported: law enforcement officers have restricted the movement of Duritskaya, but the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry denied this. The official representative of the department Yevgeny Perebiynis said the 23-year-old Ukrainian had voluntarily agreed to give details of that terrible night and is located in an apartment with friends.

Boris Nemtsov was killed on the night of Saturday , February 28, in the center of Moscow, on the Moskvoretsky bridge. According to investigators, the killer shot at the politician as he walked in the direction of Bolshaya Ordynka with Ukrainian, Anna Duritskaya. The Investigative Service of the Russian Federation has opened a criminal case into the killing of of the politician,  "murder" and "illegal arms trafficking."

The politician's killer fled the scene in car VAZ-21102 . Police were able to reliably establish the brand and license plate number of  the car of  a silvery color on a false trail that detectives came out a few times. According to some data, the regiater of the vehicle was from North Ossetia, but the car was deregistered as early as 2011.



Во время дачи показаний ключевая свидетельница расстрела оппозиционного политика сообщила, что находилась в шоковом состоянии.


Следователи допросили главную свидетельницу убийства известного политика Бориса Немцова, однако 23-летняя модель не смогла поделиться с сыщиками полезной для них информацией. Анна Дурицкая пожаловалась, что находилась в шоковом состоянии и даже не запомнила убийцу и автомобиль, на котором он подъехал.


Тем временем следователям стали известны подробности личной жизни Бориса Немцова и Анны Дурицкой. Оппозиционный политик познакомился с девушкой в Турции три года назад, после чего раз в месяц модель приезжала к Немцову в гости в Москву.

Дурицкая рассказала, что прилетела рейсом Киев — Москва в аэропорт Шереметьево, где ее встретил Немцов вместе со своим водителем. Из аэропорта они уехали в квартиру на Малой Ордынке. Вечером девушка направилась в один из тайских салонов, а Немцов уехал на интервью на радио, — рассказал источник в следствии, — Вечером, в 21:30, пара встретилась в кафе «Боско» в ГУМе, чтобы вместе поужинать.

Когда пара направилась домой пешком через Москворецкий мост, возле них остановился автомобиль светлого цвета, из которого выбежал человек и несколько раз выстрелил в оппозиционного политика.

После расстрела мужчина сел обратно в машину и уехал. Приметы преступника, точную марку автомобиля или его госномер девушка не запомнила, ссылаясь на шоковое состояние, — добавил источник.

Не исключено, что для восстановления памяти 23-летней модели понадобится помощь психотерапевтов. По мнению специалистов, у девушки на самом деле может быть кратковременная потеря памяти.

Необязательно человеку получать травму головы при ДТП или ударах, чтобы кратковременно терять память. При стрессовой ситуации у человека возникает стрессовая амнезия. В большинстве случаев она проходит спустя небольшое время, — рассказывает психотерапевт Владимир Файнзельберг, — восстановить память можно несколькими способами: успокоиться и отдохнуть, попробовать написать свою мысль — здесь сработает мышечная память, а также гипнозом или специальными препаратами. Последние два способа практически не используются специалистами.

Свидетельница убийства политика Бориса Немцова отказалась от программы госзащиты, сообщил адвокат девушки. Кроме того, Анна Дурицкая заявила, что хочет вернуться в свой родной город — Киев. Однако следователи намерены опросить девушку, ведь она является ключевым свидетелем преступления. Как сообщили в СК, есть основания провести с ней дополнительные следственные действия.

По данным СМИ, с моделью уже побеседовал консул Украины в России Геннадий Брескаленко. Некоторые издания сообщали: правоохранители ограничили передвижения Дурицкой, однако эту информацию опроверг украинский МИД. Официальный представитель ведомства Евгений Перебийнис заявил, что 23-летняя украинка добровольно согласилась рассказать СК детали той страшной ночи и находится в квартире у своих друзей.

Борис Немцов был убит в ночь на субботу, 28 февраля, в центре Москвы, на Большом Москворецком мосту. По версии следствия, киллер выстрелил в политика, когда тот шел в направлении Большой Ордынки в компании гражданки Украины Анны Дурицкой. По факту убийства политика ГСУ СК России по Москве возбуждено уголовное дело по статьям «Убийство» и «Незаконный оборот оружия».

Убийцы политика скрылись с места преступления на автомобиле ВАЗ-21102. Полиция смогла достоверно установить марку и номер машины серебристого цвета, на ложный след которой сыщики выходили несколько раз. По уточненным данным, на автомобиле убийц установлены номера Северной Осетии, однако машина была снята с учета еще в 2011 году.


Witness Describes Killer of Russian
According to the Russian Interior Ministry, Nemtsov was killed in the center of Moscow at 11:40 p.m. local time on Friday (20:40 GMT), when several shots were fired at him from a passing car.



1 March, 2015

Two key witnesses in the case of the murder of Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov testified and described the killer, according to Russian media. A physical description of the killer has been made.

Police are searching for a 170-175 centimeters tall man with a short haircut. He was wearing blue jeans and a brown sweater.

The Russian Investigative Committee plans to conduct additional investigating actions with Anna Duritskaya who was with Nemtsov when he was killed.

According to the Russian Interior Ministry, Nemtsov was killed in the center of Moscow at 11:40 p.m. local time on Friday (20:40 GMT), when several shots were fired at him from a passing car.

People place flowers on February 28, 2015 at the spot, where Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov was shot dead, near Saint-Basil's Cathedral, in the center of Moscow.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the Russian Investigative Committee, the Interior Ministry and the Federal Security Service to set up an investigative team to look into the murder of Boris Nemtsov.


Putin said the murder was "vile and cynical" and claimed that it was likely a contract killing.

The true face of "Russian patriot", Boris Nemtsov

The version pushed by the likes of the US ambassador and his “presstitutes”


I don’t mean to sink into scandal-mongering, but the true nature of the “Russian patriot”, the neo-liberal “opposition leader”, Boris Nemtsov needs to be revealed.

Here he is amid his nэtural constituency





The second level, more expensive, starts at $1500 for an evening"--or how Nemtsov rolled

1 March, 2015

Translated from Russian by J.Hawk



Nemtsov took a vacation with a new escort-virgin, and was photographed by unknown operators in all the private places. Apparently the travel company which he used sold him out.

Nemtsov did not part with the 25-year-old woman even for a minute. The hot sand of the Persian Gulf only warmed up his sexual activism. Political activism did not grow cold, either.

Nemtsov had time to count his supporters' donations.  Hundreds of Russian citizens voluntarily transferred money to his electronic account over a period of two months, to help the fighter for justice publish his oppositionist research.

Nemtsov collected 320 thousand rubles, just enough for a week in a chic room for two in the Zabele Saray hotel.

It is a new, luxurious VIP hotel, built on a palm island,” according to a tourist agency employee. “There is everything necessary for a good rest at Zabele Saray! The room resembles sultan’s apartments, only the freshest cuisine: there are 16 restaurants for even the most demanding of tastes. The hotel was built specially for the elite, the top floor hosts families of the sheikhs themselves. Only the best, believe me.”

The 52-year-old leader of the PARNAS took with him for a serious spin on the UAE beaches the faithful companion of his recent adventures, Anastasiya Ognyeva. Hotel staff whispered: “He is an important politician from the ‘90s”, but neither the staff nor the long-time guests saw any extraordinary behavior.

The pair practically never left their heavenly nest, having grown weary of hanging out with Russian tourists—that’s the electorate, after all. They ordered meals to their room: the most sophisticated Japanese dishes and the local seafood. They had breakfast around dinnertime, and they observed the sunset from the balcony.

A night in the royal de-luxe apartments of the hotel located on the Jumeira Palm island with a view on the ocean costs over 50 thousand dollars. Even though half a million is small change for Nemtsov, he and his red-headed companion nevertheless received a discount for their romantic journey.

Of course his last official wife was not invited along, but was instead left in frozen Moscow. Nemtsov also did not have the blessing from the parents of his lover Anastasiya Ognyeva.

What gave you the idea that my daughter is hanging out with Nemtsov?!” Nastya’s mom was surprised. “We know nothing about her life, she does not live with us.”

Nevertheless, Nemtsov already boasted to his numerous past wives about his new young girl.

I am very happy for him, he looks happy next to her,” told Life News one of Nemtsov’s wives, Ekaterina Odintsova. “He showed me her photos, she’s good-looking. He told me something about her, but we have many other topics to discuss.”

Of course they have other topics: Nemtsov and the journalist Odintsova had two children together.

Life News learned where lovebirds like Nemtsov obtain their madams.

The Russian democracy promoter’s muse first made herself known through the Escortmodeli agency, when Nemtsov was looking for a VIP-girl to accompany him to Israel. It seems that fortune, in the person of a wealthy revolutionary, smiled on Nastya: she has grandparents in Israel. In other words, one can find a companion with the preferred nationality, visa, and level of education.

The well developed talents of our VIP-girls can ensure not only relaxation,” promises the web site, where the Redhead was on the honor roll prior to her acquaintance with the politician.

One can even find a companion at the escort service with a beauty title, provided you have money.

Prices depend on the girl’s level, starting price is a $1000,” explains the agency’s manager Aleksandra. “The second level, more expensive, starts at $1500 for an evening.”

It’s clear that the provincial girl conquered not only Moscow, but also the heart of a Muscovite political leader.

After his vacation with a lover on the Persian Gulf coast, Nemtsov returned to work—his battle for justice, since everyone knows that his electorate cannot avail itself of such a vacation.


J.Hawk's Comment: I mean, Russian "opposition" certainly has it tough these days. When will the persecution stop? The poor guy could afford only one week in Dubai...

On a more serious note, these "escort services" are pretty much part of the shadow economy since prostitution is illegal in Russia. However, if you have dealings with such agencies, you are also dealing, however indirectly, with organized crime.  Assuming that Anna "actress-model" Duritskaya belonged to the same category of companion (which appears rather likely--Nemtsov seems to have had a thing for 20-somethings...), it's not implausible that somebody took offense to Nemtsov "spoiling the goods", so to speak, because how much money will a pregnant "escort" fetch? It's also yet to be explained who paid for Duritskaya's Switzerland abortion. 



The usual western hypocrisy and double standards