Nothing to choose between Nazis and Soviet regimes except victor’s narrative

So the Russian Regime are expressing outrage and indignation at British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson’s agreement with the suggestion that President Vladimir Putin could use the World Cup in the same way Hitler used the 1936 Olympics.

In terms of diplomacy the comparison was clumsy given the level of struggle between the Soviets and the Nazis during World War Two and the horrendous loss of life  suffered by Russians both military and civilian.

That said, in terms of historical perspective is there anything to differentiate between the two regimes and their respective records on the run up to the war and it duration.

I would argue not and it is time that the world and not least Russia recognised that morally and existentially Soviet Russia was every bit as bad as the Germans under the Nazi’s in terms of cruelty and destructiveness.

Indeed The Russians under the Soviet system conducted their murderous repression on subject nations including the Germans well after the the Nazis had been defeated in May 1945.

Furthermore the murderous activity of the Soviet Russians has to be recognised in the run up to WW2 and not be excused in the context of a reactive and revengeful fight back, following the attack on them by Nazi Germany in 1941.

The Soviet record of atrocities started before the Nazis were even formed in 1920 and had already sent millions to their deaths by the time Hitler came to power in 1933.

The number of killings that took place both within the old Russian Empire against dissenting ethnic Russians and non Russian minorities alike all throughout the 1920s and 1930s outstripped the even the Nazi’s total.

Yet we are seldom reminded of this during during the narrative of the Russian experience during World War Two.

Acting alone Russia attacked and repressed Ukrainians, Finns and Balts before in  tandem with Nazi Germany courtesy of the Non Agression pact set about the brutal and murderous dismemberment of Poland in 1939.

The rabid Russian bear was only re-invented as  a cuddly ally in 1941 by the Allies as a desperately needed fellow traveller in the struggle against Nazi Germany.

Subsequently Russia both Soviet and post Soviet regimes have used the Nazi attack on Russia in 1941 to re-invent itself from an aggressor nation to that of a victim of the Nazis.

What tosh! they were up until 1941 co-conspirators in the carve up of Eastern Europe and the Baltics.

Their behaviour in the conduct of the war was as merciless as the Nazis, the civilians caught between the two forces were victims of both parties.

The Russians in their victory were responsible for the rape of at least one million German women.

The subjugation of the countries in Eastern Europe continued up until 1990 where Germans, Poles, Hungarians, Czechs, Ukrainians and Crimean Tartars continued to suffer from murder, repression, prolonged captivity and mass deportations.

The population within the borders of Soviet Union continued to suffer from extra judicial arrests and the overall repression was only relaxed to a normative state in the run up to the collapse of the Soviet system with the advent of Perestroika in the late eighties.

The chaos that followed for a brief period of what might pass for  freedom under what might have passed for a liberal democratic system, has gradually been replaced by KGB/FSB controlled regime returning the country to rule by Deep State.

This Deep State entity as the natural successor of Deryzhinsky, Stalin, Molotov and Breznev is in no fit state to defend Russia’s past conduct from anybody, even when compared to a regime as vicious and loathsome as the Nazis.

Historians and commentators especially Russian should own up to the extent of Russian involvement in the crimes of genocide and repression throughout the Twentieth Century.

Only when the Russian nation accepts culpability and confronts it’s crimes will it be able to reset to a normative position in governance society and international relations.

If Russia continues to dissemble and deny her past and is allowed to do so unchecked by the rest of the world, then we cannot expect her to change her behaviour.

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A new low by ISIS as it postures itself against modern society

Islamic Terrorism has plumbed new depths as children and families were targeted by a suicide bomber at the Manchester Arena last night.

The targeting of such victims highlights that ISIS  and its followers are devoid of a political stance. If they were they would avoid soft targets such as children of all backgrounds enjoying a concert.

They would instead  choose targets with at least some political significance

What next for the heroes of Jihad? A children’s play centre?

The problem for modern societies is that security around hard targets has become so sophisticated that it has forced terrorists into choosing ever more softer targets and so we have attacks like last night.

In the meantime as a nation we need to get harder, why are we allowing the return of people who have travelled abroad for terrorism purposes to re-enter society.

Why do we allow groups who raise money and support for Islamic terrorism to operate as thinly disguised charities.

We have allowed and are continuing to allow terrorists and their support groups far too much breathing space.

Long ago we have shied away from tough but practical choices,  we allowed too many people with terrorist backgrounds to come from North Africa and Saudi, in the name of human rights .

These people went to work in the Mosques such as the infamous Finsbury Park Mosque.

We also inanely patted ourselves on the back with high profile publicity programmes (Contest) that purported to engage the wider public in the fight against terrorism.

The government of the day spent hundreds of millions educating shop workers in how to identify  potential terrorists and spot them purchasing seemingly innocent ingredients, with which to make a home made bomb.

I did a little investigating at the time and it seemed few people had any idea what ‘Contest 2’ was about.

I went out and purchased large amounts of products, that could potentially be used without so  much as a second glance . I wrote up the article for a Sunday tabloid.

That was in 2009 four years after the London Tube and bus bombings.

God forbid that the Arena bomber was able to produce his device from high street sources,

God forgive the authorities if the bomber is someone from a high risk state whose safety and human rights we elevated above our own security priorities.

We now have to get rough with these people as they seek to use our liberalism against us, to attack us,

Below is the Manchester Police Chief’s words from this morning with an appeal for  footage from the public to be sent in to them.

 

Chief Constable Ian Hopkins speaking at 7 25 am this morning said: “This has been the most horrific incident we have had to face in Greater Manchester and one that we all hoped we would never see.
“Families and many young people were out to enjoy a concert at the Manchester Arena and have lost their lives. Our thoughts are with those 22 victims that we now know have died, the 59 people who have been injured and their loved ones. We continue to do all we can to support them. They are being treated at eight hospitals across Greater Manchester.

“This is a fast-moving investigation and we have significant resources deployed to both the investigation and the visible patrols that people will see across Greater Manchester as they wake up to news of the events last night. This will include armed officers as people would expect. More than 400 officers have been involved in this operation during the night.

“To remind you, we were called at 10.33pm to reports of an explosion at the Manchester Arena at the conclusion of an Ariana Grande concert. More than 240 calls came in and emergency services were very quickly on scene. Emergency numbers have been established for anyone who is concerned for loved ones who may not have returned home 0161 856 9400 or 0161 856 9900.

“We have been treating this as a terrorist incident and we believe, at this stage, the attack last night was conducted by one man. The priority is to establish whether he was acting alone or as part of a network.

“The attacker, I can confirm, died at the arena. We believe the attacker was carrying an improvised explosive device which he detonated causing this atrocity.

“We would ask people not to speculate on his details or to share names. There is a complex and wide ranging investigation underway.

“Our priority is to work with the National Counter Terrorist Policing Network and UK intelligence services to establish more details about the individual who carried out this attack.

“We have received tremendous support from across the police services and partner agencies throughout the night.

“We regularly carry out exercises to test our ability to respond to such incidents and this has ensured a very swift response from local and national agencies. I want to thank all those members of the emergency services and other agencies who have worked tirelessly through the night in very difficult circumstances. Their response has been outstanding.

“Terrorists attempt to disrupt our lives and create distrust and fear in communities. We have a long history in Greater Manchester of communities standing together during difficult times. In the coming days we will be working closely with community leaders to address any issues.

“It is important that we all continue to remain vigilant, but also to go about our daily lives. We would ask people to be alert and report any suspicious activity to police on the Anti-Terrorist Hotline 0800 789321 or dialling 999.

“As people are waking up to this tragic news on what is a sad day for Greater Manchester, the officers and staff from Greater Manchester Police and the other emergency services will continue to do all they can to help get us through the difficult days ahead.”

If you have any images or footage from last night that you believe can assist us then upload them to Ukpoliceimageappeal.co.uk or Ukpoliceimageappeal.com

 

By Nigel Pivaro

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World close to the brink as Anti Assad forces capture Russian Pilot downed by Turks.

Following the downing of the Russian bomber this morning I can only be grateful that the world’s major powers have a common enemy in ISIL

As regards the Turks under a putative Sunni demagogue Rycyp Erdogan I can only think with friends like these who needs enemies.

Turkey’s New Ottomanism foreign policy has been a disaster and perhaps should be alternately known as  Neo Byzantinism in view of the double dealing and continued deception.in regards to Turkey’s relationship with extreme groups in Syria.

I personally witnessed the facilitation of the foreign jihadi fighters that make up the Katibas of Al Nursra, Al Sham and ISIL  while working as a journalist in Antakya, as recruits from the Magreb Chechnya and Europe were granted free passage through South East Turkey  into Aleppo and Idlib province across the border in Syria.

Not only were they allowed to come en masse to meet with recruiters, they were able to cross back and forth for Rest and Recreation and medical treatment in Antakya.

Meanwhile local traders did a roaring trade in non lethal military kit.

Others in the back street tea houses and coffee shops steered the way to illegal arms.

While princes and sheiks from Qatar rolled up in  armoured Limos with entourages of imans and bodyguards to disburse millions of dollars to residents of Syrian refugee camps while espousing anti Assad Israeli and Shia rhetoric as their price.

One can only speculate if the  dollars went on recruitment for the fight against Assad, but then again neither was there evidence that the conditions in the camps improved significantly either.

This was 2012 since which time the province around Antakya with its large Allawi and Arab population has been teetering on the brink of revolt .

The local Allawites or Allevis many with relatives across the border in Syria mostly support Assad and are not afraid to tell you so.

There were already pre existing tensions with local Turkish Sunni moslems who were brought in to the area by Attaturk before the second World War in order to make up the numbers of Ethnic Turks voting yes to annexation by Turkey.

The plebiscite was offered by France who then ruled over Greater Syria following the collapse of Ottoman rule after the first world war. It was 1939 and the French  were eager to bring Turkey into the war against Nazi Germany.

Since July 2015 Turkey has supposedly been involved in operations against ISIL yet has been persistent in its criticism of Russian involvement

Understandably Turkey has been vociferous against Assad’s atrocities against Syrian civilians, but was muted when its alleged proxy ISIL has been deliberately and systematically conducting brutal genocide against Yazedis Shia’s and Christians .

It has condemned Russia’s bombing campaign and seen to be lukewarm in its pursuit of  ISIL preferring to target Kurds who are directly  fighting ISIL .

And now we have the most positionally suspect NATO member downing a Russian Jet with the death of its two pilots.

Most worryingly one of the pilots seems to have been killed by yet another of the Turks proxies anti Assad Turkmen paramilitaries.

The gruesome displaying of the pilot’s body in the usual display of triumphalism by these groups will not play well on the world stage least of all in Moscow.

If it transpires that the jet was brought down on the border or inside Syrian airspace it denudes Ankara of any fig leaf in relation to their real policy intentions of protecting their proxies rather than joining in a untied front against extremist militant groups fighting Assad.

The Russians muted response so far gives hope that they may realise they have to concede that the jet was in fact well into Turkish airspace. I

f that is the case Turkey can expect to find itself at the wrong end of Russian trade and foreign relations.

However if Russia deems its plane was well inside Syrian airspace then Turkey must face some sort existential military response from Russia.

If that is the case, Governments in the West and NATO would be well advised to steer  clear of supporting Turkey in what is a situation all of its own making and against the wider policy aims of the West and its allies in the Middle East and the wider world.

Countries like France, UK and even the USA, will hopefully see that Russia is a more valued ally in the fight against a common enemy than a double dealing Turkey, self serving its own nefarious regional policies and interests.

 

 

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