Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

McCain: Russians Deserve Better Than Putin ‖ Op-ed

by Oui Thu Sep 19th, 2013 at 08:26:24 AM EST

Links added to article as a rebuttal are mine - Oui

Senator John McCain: Russians deserve better than Putin   Pravda.ru

When Pravda.ru editor, Dmitry Sudakov, offered to publish my commentary, he referred to me as "an active anti-Russian politician for many years." I'm sure that isn't the first time Russians have heard me characterized as their antagonist. Since my purpose here is to dispel falsehoods used by Russia's rulers to perpetuate their power and excuse their corruption, let me begin with that untruth. I am not anti-Russian. I am pro-Russian, more pro-Russian than the regime that misrules you today.

I make that claim because I respect your dignity and your right to self-determination. I believe you should live according to the dictates of your conscience, not your government. I believe you deserve the opportunity to improve your lives in an economy that is built to last and benefits the many, not just the powerful few. You should be governed by a rule of law that is clear, consistently and impartially enforced and just. I make that claim because I believe the Russian people, no less than Americans, are endowed by our Creator with inalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. [McCain did not mention equality - Oui]

Continued below the fold ...


A Russian citizen could not publish a testament like the one I just offered. President Putin and his associates do not believe in these values. They don't respect your dignity or accept your authority over them. They punish dissent and imprison opponents. They rig your elections. They control your media. They harass, threaten, and banish organizations that defend your right to self-governance. To perpetuate their power they foster rampant corruption in your courts and your economy and terrorize and even assassinate journalists who try to expose their corruption.

They write laws to codify bigotry against people whose sexual orientation they condemn. They throw the members of a punk rock band in jail for the crime of being provocative and vulgar and for having the audacity to protest President Putin's rule.

Sergei Magnistky wasn't a human rights activist. He was an accountant at a Moscow law firm. He was an ordinary Russian who did an extraordinary thing. He exposed one of the largest state thefts of private assets in Russian history. He cared about the rule of law and believed no one should be above it. For his beliefs and his courage, he was held in Butyrka prison without trial, where he was beaten, became ill and died. After his death, he was given a show trial reminiscent of the Stalin-era and was, of course, found guilty. That wasn't only a crime against Sergei Magnitsky. It was a crime against the Russian people and your right to an honest government - a government worthy of Sergei Magnistky and of you.

President Putin claims his purpose is to restore Russia to greatness at home and among the nations of the world. But by what measure has he restored your greatness? He has given you an economy that is based almost entirely on a few natural resources that will rise and fall with those commodities. Its riches will not last. And, while they do, they will be mostly in the possession of the corrupt and powerful few. Capital is fleeing Russia, which - lacking rule of law and a broad-based economy - is considered too risky for investment and entrepreneurism. He has given you a political system that is sustained by corruption and repression and isn't strong enough to tolerate dissent.

How has he strengthened Russia's international stature? By allying Russia with some of the world's most offensive and threatening tyrannies. By supporting a Syrian regime that is murdering tens of thousands of its own people to remain in power and by blocking the United Nations from even condemning its atrocities. By refusing to consider the massacre of innocents, the plight of millions of refugees, the growing prospect of a conflagration that engulfs other countries in its flames an appropriate subject for the world's attention. He is not enhancing Russia's global reputation. He is destroying it. He has made her a friend to tyrants and an enemy to the oppressed, and untrusted by nations that seek to build a safer, more peaceful and prosperous world.

President Putin doesn't believe in these values because he doesn't believe in you. He doesn't believe that human nature at liberty can rise above its weaknesses and build just, peaceful, prosperous societies. Or, at least, he doesn't believe Russians can. So he rules by using those weaknesses, by corruption, repression and violence. He rules for himself, not you.

I do believe in you. I believe in your capacity for self-government and your desire for justice and opportunity. I believe in the greatness of the Russian people, who suffered enormously and fought bravely against terrible adversity to save your nation. I believe in your right to make a civilization worthy of your dreams and sacrifices. When I criticize your government, it is not because I am anti-Russian. It is because I believe you deserve a government that believes in you and answers to you. And, I long for the day when you have it.

JPost - US Senator McCain attacks Putin in Russian website op-ed

McCain: Russia backing Syria over longing for 'old Russian empire'

(The Hill) June 18, 2012 - McCain also suggested that Syria was a test case for Russia over whether the Arab Spring would spread to other parts of the world. McCain specifically mentioned Chechnya, where he said the Russians used "incredible brutality" to put down an uprising.

McCain has previously taken aim at Putin over the Arab Spring, tweeting in December:

    "Dear Vlad, The #ArabSpring is coming to a neighborhood near you."
Putin responded by calling the senator and 2008 presidential candidate "nuts."

 
Russia's Putin lashes out at Sen. McCain over tweet

"Mr. McCain fought in Vietnam. I think that he has enough blood of peaceful citizens on his hands. It must be impossible for him to live without these disgusting scenes anymore," Putin said, according to The Telegraph.

    "Mr. McCain was captured and they kept him not just in prison, but in a pit for several years. Anyone [in his place] would go nuts."

Insane McCain, Obama’s Grand Chessboard, and Russia’s Color Revolution

Democracy in Georgia: Another McCain Bastion Lost to Moscow   Oct. 2, 2012
Engineering a Colour Revolution and Beyond   April 25, 2012
Human Rights NGOs Not Wanted in Egypt and Israel   Dec. 30, 2011
Putin snubs Britain and US over VE Day celebrations   May 7, 2010

Display:
John McCain aims broadside at Vladimir Putin with reply editorial

(Guardian) - Senator John McCain has taken to the web pages of Pravda.ru to tell Russians their ruler is corrupt, repressive and violent, in a blistering riposte to Vladimir Putin's commentary last week in the New York Times.

The veteran US senator and former presidential candidate used almost every line of his article for the Pravda.ru website to blast Putin for human rights abuse, cronyism and election-rigging, as well as foreign policy.

The tit-for-tat editorials come just after a temporary thaw in the deep freeze of US-Russian relations with a bilateral agreement on disarming Syria of its chemical weapons on Saturday, but that agreement is already fraying over differences on how it should be implemented.

While Putin used his editorial to present the US administration as war-mongers and himself as a peacemaker in Syria, McCain sought to paint the Russian leader as "supporting a Syrian regime that is murdering tens of thousands of its own people to remain in power and by blocking the United Nations from even condemning its atrocities."

US Senators Target Top Russian Banks Over Syria



'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Thu Sep 19th, 2013 at 09:27:22 AM EST
They write laws to codify bigotry against people whose sexual orientation they condemn.

Who said the following?

Gay troops pose "an intolerable risk" to national security
Answer.
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Thu Sep 19th, 2013 at 10:50:38 AM EST
Of course, the reason Putin keeps winning elections is that Russians still remember the American version of "better than Putin."

So long as the neoliberal looting binge of the 1990s remains living memory, Putin will be regarded as a national savior. Because that's precisely what he was.

The fact that ten years of neoliberal policy lowers the bar for recognition as a national savior to "sane, sober and only moderately evil" is a chilling reminder of what life used to be like in Rubin's Russia.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Thu Sep 19th, 2013 at 11:08:57 AM EST
European Tribune - Comments - McCain: Russians Deserve Better Than Putin ‖ Op-ed
Sergei Magnistky wasn't a human rights activist. He was an accountant at a Moscow law firm. He was an ordinary Russian who did an extraordinary thing. He exposed one of the largest state thefts of private assets in Russian history. He cared about the rule of law and believed no one should be above it. For his beliefs and his courage, he was held in Butyrka prison without trial, where he was beaten, became ill and died. After his death, he was given a show trial reminiscent of the Stalin-era and was, of course, found guilty.

Oh, McCain cares about leakers and are against torturing them and putting them in front of show trials? The same McCain who is very clear about solitary confinement being a form of torture?

Is long-term solitary confinement torture? : The New Yorker

"It's an awful thing, solitary," John McCain wrote of his five and a half years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam--more than two years of it spent in isolation in a fifteen-by-fifteen-foot cell, unable to communicate with other P.O.W.s except by tap code, secreted notes, or by speaking into an enamel cup pressed against the wall. "It crushes your spirit and weakens your resistance more effectively than any other form of mistreatment."

So does he have anything to say when torturing whisteblowers happens on his own watch?

McCain calls for prosecution of leaker, slams WikiLeaks - The Hill's Blog Briefing Room

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Monday that charges should be brought against the source who leaked thousands of documents to WikiLeaks.

McCain, the ranking member of the Armed Services Committee and a proponent of the war in Afghanistan, said the leak was a "serious breach of national security."

Guess not.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Thu Sep 19th, 2013 at 03:02:55 PM EST
Academics join CUNY David Petraeus protests as NYPD arrests six students

(Guardian) - Scores of academics at the City University of New York have signed a petition calling for charges against six students, arrested during a protest against David Petraeus, to be dropped. The academics have also called for the former four-star general to resign from his teaching role at CUNY.

"As graduate students and educators of CUNY, we express our outrage at the violent and unprovoked actions by the NYPD against CUNY students peacefully protesting the appointment of war criminal David Petraeus as a lecturer at the Macaulay Honors College," said a statement signed by scores of CUNY academics.

A statement from the Ad Hoc Committee Against the Militarization of CUNY, which is organising the protests, said in a statement: "A broad range of CUNY students, faculty and staff members have been carrying out a campaign of 'protest and exposure' against the Board of Trustees' appointment of Petraeus, whose documented actions as Iraq/Afghanistan war commander and CIA chief include drone attack supon civilians, and the creation of torture centers and death squads."

Video: Six CUNY Students Arrested Protesting "U.S. Imperial War," Petraeus



'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Fri Sep 20th, 2013 at 02:27:32 PM EST
Confused senator attempts to publish column in Communist newspaper from distant past - Salon.com
John McCain embarrasses himself in the Russian press by submitting an editorial to an online conspiracy site

Sen. John McCain, a man of his word, published his editorial -- a stirring defense of the rights to free speech, dissent and political expression -- in Russia's Pravda, just like he said he would.

One small problem: As people are now finally pointing out, this isn't the famous Pravda. After the Soviet Union was made to collapse, its official propaganda organ was sold off and eventually closed. There is no more "Pravda," omnipresent national newspaper in which the Kremlin disseminates the party line to the oppressed masses. There is now Pravda, the struggling, thrice-weekly organ of the remains of the Communist Party, and Pravda.ru, a sensationalistic online-only news site few people in Russia take seriously.

by das monde on Fri Sep 20th, 2013 at 03:51:00 PM EST
This reminds me of the occasion when Jacques Chirac, President of France, gave an exclusive interview to the New York Post. It was theorised that he had confused it with either the New York Times or the Washington Post.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Fri Sep 20th, 2013 at 04:04:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]


Display:
Go to: [ European Tribune Homepage : Top of page : Top of comments ]

Top Diaries