• Ukraine crisis puts Britain’s Cameron on spot over Russian donations - Yahoo News

    British Prime Minister David Cameron came under pressure over the Ukraine crisis on Wednesday after he was forced to defend a party political donation from the wife of a former minister in Russian President Vladimir Putin’s government.

    Lyubov Chernukhina, the wife of Vladimir Chernukhin, a former deputy finance minister in Putin’s government, agreed to pay 160,000 pounds ($272,500) to Cameron’s Conservative Party at a fund-raising gala this month in exchange for a game of tennis with Cameron and Boris Johnson, the mayor of London.

    But that and other donations to Cameron’s party to fund its campaign for re-election in 2015 have come under scrutiny after the British leader called for sanctions on Putin’s “cronies and oligarchs” following the downing of a Malaysian plane in eastern Ukraine last week.

    The opposition Labour Party has questioned Cameron’s credibility to talk tough on the issue at the same time as his party is taking donations from people with links to the Russian government, which it said were worth 910,000 pounds.

    And abroad, French politicians have accused Cameron of hypocrisy for criticizing France’s sale of two Mistral warships to Russia, while doing nothing that would affect Russian interests in Britain, home to many wealthy Russians.

    Cameron, who lawmakers queried on Wednesday on why Britain had granted licenses to sell arms to Russia, said criticism of his party’s funding was misplaced and that it would not be handing back Chernukhina’s donation.

    Of course I wouldn’t accept money from someone who is a Putin crony but my understanding is that this person certainly isn’t that and has lived in Britain for many years and is now actually a British citizen so I don’t think that would be the right approach,” Cameron told British TV.

    A source close to Cameron’s party said Chernukhina’s husband had been sacked by Putin and could not be credibly described as having any links with the Russia’s government.

    Documents from Britain’s electoral watchdog show that Chernukhina had made three previous cash donations to the Conservative Party totaling 5,500 pounds since August 2012. Another donation of 10,000 pounds, in April 2012, was rejected because she was not eligible to vote at the time.

    Labour called on Cameron to be honest about Russia-linked party donations.

    People will be surprised at the extent of Russian wealth bankrolling David Cameron’s re-election fund,” Sheila Gilmore, a Labour member of parliament, said in a statement.

    There can be no impression of conflicts of interest or hypocrisy at such an important time.

    Johnson told Sky News that he would not play tennis with any crony of Putin’s.

  • The Group of Bloggers Unearthing MH17 Intel Quicker Than U.S. Spies

    Higgins, with the help of some of his Twitter followers, was able to pinpoint the location of a Buk launcher while it was being transported through Snizhne, a pro-Russian rebel-held town in Ukraine near the Russian border, based on a video circulating on YouTube.
    The next day, Aric Toler, a longtime follower of Higgins, identified the exact location of a photograph of the Buk launcher in Torez, another town in Eastern Ukraine, using only open source information like the name of a store shown in the picture, and other unrelated YouTube videos filmed in the area.

    Toler and Higgins were able to establish that the photograph was shot around 11:40 a.m. local time, using an online tool called Suncalc, which lets you calculate the position of the sun based of the time of day and location. That would prove that the launcher was in the area before the MH17 crash. (Higgins told Mashable that he checked the tool’s accuracy by taking pictures of his garden at different times of the day to see if the shadows matched the ones on the site.)

    Another crowdsourced analysis that Higgins assembled on Tuesday offers strong proof that a video published by the Ukrainian government shows the Buk launcher being moved from Ukraine to Russia through rebel-held towns. In the video, the launcher seems to be missing a missile.

    The Russian government rebuffed the video, claiming it had actually been filmed in the town of Krasnoarmeisk, which under the control of the Ukrainian military. However, thanks to other open source intelligence analysis, it turns out the town is not actually Krasnoarmeisk but the rebel-held Luhansk, just 30 miles from the Russian border.

    “The Russians lied,” Higgins wrote in his post on Bellingcat, his new website to promote the work of other investigative citizen journalists and to teach others about the tools they use. The site is currently raising money on Kickstarter.

    These findings certainly don’t prove that Russia was responsible for the downing of MH17, as Higgins himself admits, but rather provide strong evidence that pro-Russian rebels possess (or possessed, until very recently) a Buk missile launcher, and that it was close to the crash site before and after the plane was shot down.
    For Higgins, this work is simple intelligence-gathering, which can help those on the ground investigate further. After he and Toler established the location and time of the picture of the Buk in Torez, journalists traveled to the spot and found witnesses that confirmed the analysis, Higgins said.

    That would suggest Higgins and the dozen or so people who have helped him over the past few days know just as much as professional American spies.

    “[The Americans] clearly only rely on open source information, or mostly on open source, yet they are not releasing what they’re relying on," Higgins said. “It’s like they’re ashamed.”

  • U.S. Officials : Russia Not Directly Involved in Downing MH17

    Senior U.S. intelligence officials said Russia is responsible for “creating the conditions” that led to the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, but there’s no evidence that the Russian government was directly involved in the shooting.

    The unnamed intelligence officials said Russian-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine likely shot down the plane with an SA-11 surface-to-air missile. While they confirmed that Russia has been arming the separatists for months, the officials didn’t provide proof that the missile used to shoot down the Boeing 777 actually came from Russia.

    The most likely explanation, according to a senior official, is that the plane was shot down by mistake. The most likely explanation, according to a senior official, is that the plane was shot down by mistake.

    According to the Associated Press, the officials briefed reporters on Tuesday with the stipulation that their names not be used in discussing intelligence related to MH17. They said they didn’t know if any Russians were present at the missile launch, and they wouldn’t say that the missile crew was trained in Russia.

    The Obama administration, however, has been pointing the finger at Russia for backing the separatists, who have been fighting with Ukrainian forces for months. On Monday, President Obama said Russia had gone beyond just arming the separatists — it had trained them to use the heavy-duty artillery.

    Russia has extraordinary influence over these separatists. No one denies that. Russia has urged them on. Russia has trained them,” Obama said. “We know that Russia has armed them with military equipment and weapons, including anti-aircraft weapons. Key separatist leaders are Russian citizens.

    The intelligence officials who spoke with reporters on Monday were tight-lipped in terms of who fired the missile.

    We don’t know a name, we don’t know a rank and we’re not even 100% sure of a nationality,” one official said, adding at another point, “There is not going to be a Perry Mason moment here.

    Ce qui n’empêche pas les politiques de reprendre la position ukrainienne…

    Meanwhile, Russia presented its own evidence on Monday, reiterating that it wasn’t involved in the shooting down of MH17 and focused on reasons why the world should be looking into the Ukrainian government instead. Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko called the accusation an irresponsible and false statement.

    The White House on Monday said Russia’s counter-narrative was an attempt to thwart attention away from the nation’s involvement.

    What’s clear is that there is a picture that’s coming into focus,” said White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest. “Russian claims to the contrary are getting both more desperate and much harder to believe.

    … puisqu’on vous dit que c’est pas vrai !

  • MH17 And The Russian Media : Why The Kremlin’s Propaganda Machine Is So Effective

    The picture of the catastrophe that the Russian people are seeing on their television screens is very different from that on screens in much of the rest of the world.

    Ça, c’est sûr !

    Maintenant, ce que dit le « reste du monde » : l’article commence par ceci…

    One of the more outrageous conspiracy theories about the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 surfaced in the days following the destruction of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 last week. The theory, which originated in Russia, holds that MH17 and MH370 are actually the same plane, and the U.S. military arranged for the second flight, filled with corpses, to be blown up over eastern Ukraine.

    … pour introduire l’idée tout aussi abracadabrantesque que…

    While the sensational theory does not appear to be circulating among the more legitimate news outlets in Russia, Russian television stations have reportedly been promoting a narrative that Ukraine and, to a lesser extent, the United States — but definitely not Russia — are responsible for the air disaster.


  • Russian military: Russian air monitoring services registered Ukrainian Su-25 sweeping towards Malaysian Boeing on July 17

    Russian air monitoring services registered a Ukrainian plane, tentatively a Sukhoi Su-25, sweeping up towards the Malaysian Boeing on July 17, the Russian Defense Ministry said.

    • Encore Reuters

      Russia challenges accusations that Ukraine rebels shot down airliner | Reuters

      Russia’s Defence Ministry on Monday challenged U.S. and Ukrainian accusations that pro-Russian separatists were responsible for shooting down a Malaysian airliner and said Ukrainian warplanes had flown close to the aircraft.

      The ministry also rejected accusations by the United States and Kiev that Russia had supplied the separatist rebels in east Ukraine with SA-11 Buk anti-aircraft missile systems, known as “Gadfly” in NATO, “or any other weapons.

      Russian air space control systems detected a Ukrainian Air Force plane, presumably an SU-25 (fighter jet), scrambling in the direction of the Malaysian Boeing,” Lieutenant-General Igor Makushev of Russia’s Air Forces told a news briefing. “The distance of the SU-25 plane from the Boeing was from 3 to 5 kilometres (2 to 3 miles),” he said.

      Another officer, Lieutenant-General Andrei Kartopolov, also challenged the United States should produce any satellite images it may have to support its assertions that there had been a missile launch by the rebels.

      He told the briefing “nobody (in the international community) has seen these images”.

  • BRICS: Progressive Rhetoric, Neoliberal Practice

    So let’s assume that this is not—this BRICS development, the new bank, it’s not anti-capitalist, it’s not anti-neoliberal, it goes along with the current form of global finance capitalism. But that doesn’t mean they don’t want to make some room between themselves and U.S. domination. It doesn’t mean that Russia and China, you know, which are very big economies, especially—as you said, China is number two now, and I guess it’s not going to be that long before it’s the largest economy in the world—don’t want to get pushed around anymore within that system. And this was a bit of what Michael Hudson’s point was. I think it was—we may go back with those two guys again so we can get a chance to develop it further. But, I mean, World War II, the countries that fought World War II were all part of global capitalism. It didn’t stop them from going to war with each other.

  • Is the New BRICS Bank a Challenge to US Global Financial Power? | TRNN 2014-07-18

    Michael Hudson and Leo Panitch discuss and debate the significance of the new international development bank created by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa

    La trace écrite chez


    JAY: Okay. So, Michael, if I understand, your main argument is—in some ways it’s not that different, in some respects, from what Leo was saying. You’re not saying they’re getting off the whole capitalist bandwagon. What you’re saying they’re doing is buying themselves a little more room in terms of their foreign policy.

    HUDSON: There is a very broad range over what they can do. And if you look at what is the most likely of common denominator, it’s exactly what Leo said. The common denominator is it’s their capitalists against the U.S. capitalists, it’s their saying, what can we do to be free of the U.S. banks and Wall Street and the City of London and the financial extractive loans. At least the neoliberal plans today have gone beyond trying to finance infrastructure development. The financial system in the West is almost entirely extractive now, not productive. The capitalist class in the countries that Leo’s mentioned want at least some bank to do some productive loans that they can benefit from, rather than having the U.S. come in and grab everything for itself like a privatization on behalf of the U.S. You see this kind of fight going on in Greece right now, where the eurozone said, Greece as to privatize its natural resources to pay the debt. Half the privatization last year was to be the sale of its gas rights.


    PANITCH: So, I’m sorry, I don’t see the world in terms of competition amongst the capitalist classes of the world in the sense you’re speaking of. I think there is a very deep integration on the part of the leading capitalists in these countries, including the domestic ones, into globalization. I think that’s true of Vale in Brazil.

    JAY: That’s the world’s largest iron ore company.

    PANITCH: That’s the world’s largest iron ore company, which, sure, is competing with other iron ore companies. But it doesn’t see itself as aligned against the American bourgeoisie or the American capitalist class. This is not right.
    And moreover, I think that these capitalist classes very much want access to the deep financial markets of London and New York. They don’t want to leave them; they want to be part of them. They want access to them. Indeed, they’ve been floating bond us in those markets—dangerously, in terms of volatility. So I think—and it has to be said the reason they do so is that their financial markets, their bond markets, even the European bond market relative to the London/New York access, remain extremely weak, extremely vulnerable. So it’s also a matter of where the deep institutional strength of capitalism is.
    I would make one other point. I don’t think that finance, even Wall Street and London—the City of London finance is merely parasitic. I think it facilitates, it underwrites, it’s very important in terms of hedging for all of the integrated production that goes on between China and the United States, between South Africa and Europe. This plays a functional role for all these value chains. Of course there’s loads of speculation in this, but it means that industry is linked up with this speculation. These aren’t separated compartments. And you can’t unscramble them.

    HUDSON: I see that I’m emphasizing the geopolitical much more than you of nobody’s talking about Brazil and other countries not interacting with the London and New York money markets. What they don’t want to do is to have the U.S. government and U.S. banks act as a threat, a threat against their countries. And of course they’re trying to keep their—have other options apart from being tied into the U.S. as a system of control. They want to break free of U.S. control, basically, and European control is a satellite of the United States.

    PANITCH: Yeah. But since politics and economics aren’t so easily separated, their continuing interest and increased interest in being linked economically and financially means that the American state, given its superintending role of Wall Street and the City of London, will continue to have power vis-à-vis them. They would like to, as we’ve agreed, they’d like to have more room for maneuver in the face of that enormous power of the American Empire, but they are not interested in breaking from it.


    BRICS: Progressive Rhetoric, Neoliberal Practice | TRNN 2014-07-14
    Patrick Bond: All the governments behind the New Development Bank practice intense neoliberalism

    La trace écrite chez


    JAY: Okay. So let’s say that they are as neoliberal as they come. But at the geopolitical level—like, for example, let’s take the leadup to the war in Iraq. Now, France is not part of BRICS, but France, for its own reasons, its own interests, stood up to the United States at the UN Security Council in quite an interesting way. So did some of the other countries. I mean, China, I think, actually could’ve been, certainly, bolder than they were, but they couldn’t get—the Americans couldn’t get the votes they wanted to give a clear-cut authorization of the Iraq War. It didn’t stop them from doing it illegally anyway, but it was an important moment. And with an institution like this new bank, and perhaps even building on that—for example, right now there’s the sanctions against Russia over the Ukraine. There’s a story in The New York Times today that it’s not going to have that much effect. One of the major Russian oil companies was targeted for sanctions, and one of the sanctions was going to make it more difficult for it to get capital in the Western capital markets. And now, apparently, they’re just going to borrow the money from the Chinese, and so the sanction’s not going to affect it as much. So I guess my question is is that within this context of global and neoliberal capitalism, getting to a more multipolar world, getting to a point where some of these other bigger powers can push back against the United States, which clearly is the biggest military operation on the planet and is the one that keeps starting major war after major war, is this—whatever room they can create for themselves, isn’t this a good thing?

    BOND: Well, it could be if the modus operandi operates in a way that reduces U.S. power systematically. But as we’ve seen, when there are inter-imperial rivalries, that can often lead to a much more dangerous outcome. For example, the way to handle the kinds of pressures that the U.S. puts on other countries—the coalition of the willing, certainly, in the UN Security Council in 2003, the U.S. was unable to get authorization, because the Chinese and Russians and French wouldn’t support—they would veto the approval. But, you know, in May they then approved that the U.S. could run Iraq, having invaded it.
    What was interesting this week on that front was that the UN Security Council reforms that are being proposed for many years to widen up the permanent members with a veto to move from five to ten by adding three BRICS—South Africa, Brazil, and India, as well as Germany and Japan—those ideas, which you’d have thought perhaps China and Russia would have supported to get more of their allies on board in the Security Council, they didn’t. It was quite a revealing memorandum that was released at the end of the BRICS summit in which the BRICS only said that it would be an increased role for the these other three smaller countries, as opposed to China and Russia.

    JAY: So this inter-imperialist rivalry is even amongst the BRICS countries. And we even saw this with a big fight between China and India about where the bank was going to be—this new bank was going to be based.

    BOND: Well, indeed. There was a lot of face-saving. And I can just imagine these finance ministers, reserve bank governors, and all of their bureaucrats fighting over the fine details. They eloquently and geometrically resolved that by setting up all kinds of mechanisms to appear that each of the five countries got a little piece. For example, in South Africa, Johannesburg will have a branch plant of the BRICS bank, and that will allow South Africa to help control the funding flows in and out of Africa, which is South Africa’s so-called gateway role that they’ve desired, and that would be very much an example of South imperialism insofar as the hinterlands of the BRICS countries are under the thumb of the regional hegemons, South Africa in Africa probably wanting now to have a more regularized extraction system of the valuable member minerals and petroleum from this continent.
    However, I think you’re right that we will probably see the kind of tensions in a logic of expansionism, territorial ambitions of a Russia and China. Well, Russia now, of course, moving to the West to try to capture some of the ground lost when the USSR fell apart, China moving aggressively even into Vietnamese territorial waters to grab islands, of course the conflict with Taiwan and Japan, these are moments where I think there’s a fair bit of danger, and not just in the symbolic sense of territorial expansionism, but actually in potential alliances, that the BRICS will become an inter-imperial force with a more aggressive approach to capital accumulation. And that’s where these two logics come together.



    #Russie #Russland
    #Indes #India
    #Brésil #Brasil
    #Afrique_du_Sud #South_Africa #Südafrika

    #capitalisme #Kapitalismus

    #USA #États-unis

    #Worldbank #Banque_mondiale #Weltbank

  • Les grands pays émergents se dotent d’un outil financier à côté de la Banque mondiale et du FMI

    BRICS for a new bank - The Hindu

    What might have been dismissed as an impossibility just five years ago is now a reality. Defying sceptics and critics, five countries that between them account for 40 per cent of the world’s population and 20 per cent of its GDP have signed an agreement to create a development bank to provide financial assistance to developing countries and emerging market economies, mainly for infrastructure projects. As its name implies, the agreement for the New Development Bank, signed by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa at their sixth BRICS summit in Brazil, signals the start of a new global financial order that aims to be more inclusive than the Western-focussed International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. The $100 billion bank will have an initial subscribed capital of $50 billion. The five members managed to iron out their differences to agree on an equal share for each in the bank, so no one member dominates the institution. India and South Africa both wanted to host the headquarters. The eventual decision to locate it in Shanghai was an acknowledgement that China’s is the biggest economy in the grouping. The Bank will also have an African Regional Centre in South Africa and India will assume the first presidency of the bank. First mooted at the fourth BRICS summit in New Delhi in 2012, the Bank will certainly have an impact on the existing arrangements put in place by the Bretton Woods institutions, and will give more say to smaller countries. But BRICS also appears to recognise that the NDB cannot replace the IMF, the World Bank or the regional development banks. Thus, the Fortaleza Declaration describes the NDB as a “supplement to the efforts of multilateral and regional financial institutions for global development.”

    A second financial instrument, the Contingency Reserve Arrangement of $100 billion, has been set up to help developing economies tide over “short-term liquidity pressures, promote further BRICS cooperation, strengthen the global financial safety net and complement existing international arrangements.” In its sixth year, BRICS has a new confidence, and it was more than apparent at the summit. The only world grouping that is not region, security or trade-based, its members have come together with the determination to create a more multilateral global order. China and Russia have backed the other three BRICS members on the issue of UN reform and Security Council expansion. But the grouping needs to find a stronger political voice. The Declaration came in the midst of the bombardment, even if under grave provocation, of Gaza by Israel, but it is silent on this while calling for Israel and Palestine to resume negotiations towards a two-state solution.

  • EU’s Anti-Open Source Approach to Procurement

    In recent posts, I’ve looked at the increasing use of open source software by governments in countries as diverse as China, Russia, India and Germany. Here I want to contrast those moves with the continuing failure of the European Commission to embrace free software - with huge costs for European citizens as a result, to say nothing of lost sovereignty.


  • Autre projet de #mur:
    #Kolomojsky: “I can build fence along #Ukraine-Russia border

    Tycoon and Governor of the Dnipropetrovsk oblast Ihor Kolomojsky proposes to Pres Poroshenko to start the construction of a 1,900-km fence along Ukraine eastern border with Russia, reports June 12.
    #Russie #barrière_frontalière #frontière

  • Le parlement ukrainien ouvre la voie à la privatisation des gazoducs, à hauteur de 49%.
    Qui va investir dans un ensemble dépendant à 100% d’un client unique, Gazprom ?

    U.S., EU Unlikely to Invest in Ukraine’s Gas System, Analysts Say | Business | The Moscow Times

    Ukraine’s move Friday toward attempting to sell nearly 50 percent in its gas pipeline system to EU and U.S. investors does not mean that Western buyers will rush to take up the offer, as the system’s value depends on a steady supply of Russian gas, energy analysts told The Moscow Times.

    Amid the current standoff with Russia over unpaid bills for gas imports, Ukraine’s parliament passed a bill in its first reading Friday that envisages the creation of a Ukrainian gas transportation operator of which European and U.S. investors could own up to 49 percent.
    The bill excludes Russia from ownership in the system by only accepting as shareholders companies owned and controlled by residents of the EU, U.S. or European Energy Community, of which Ukraine is a member but Russia is not. The company must also belong to the European Network of Transmission System Operators of Gas. The same conditions apply for operators of Ukraine’s subterranean natural gas storage facilities.
    But Europe and the U.S. are unlikely to invest in the proposed transport system, according to Sergei Pikin, director of the Moscow-based energy consultancy and engineering firm Energy Development Fund.

    “So far we have not seen any companies express an interest in this arrangement. Who will be interested in an asset that is dependent on gas from a third party — Russia?” he said.

  • Russian Gas : How Much Is That ?

    A study of publicly available data shows that West European countries pay less to Gazprom, the Russian state-run gas giant, than do poorer Central and East European countries.
    Prices European countries paid for gas from Russia in 2013

    Seuls les prix sont comparés, sans considération sur les natures des contrats (long terme, engagement de quantité, clause take or pay…)

    • Le prix du gaz de l’accord avec la Chine vient de fuiter.

      Gazprom Gas Price in China Deal Said to Be Near German Level - Businessweek

      OAO Gazprom (OGZD), the world largest natural-gas producer, will supply fuel to China at a price close to Germany’s, according to Russian officials.

      Keeping parity between Germany and China, which will be Gazprom’s two largest customers after shipments to the Asian country start, may reassure investors that Russia didn’t offer excessive discounts to win a deal that had been sought for more than a decade.

      The base price for China National Petroleum Corp. is about $360 per 1,000 cubic meters, two government officials in Moscow said, asking not to be identified because the information is confidential. That’s near the average $366 that Gazprom charged Germany last year, which pays one of the lowest prices in Europe, one of the officials said.

  • Vladimir Putin would welcome Scottish independence, claims Michael Gove | Mail Online

    Vladimir Putin would welcome Scottish independence because it would weaken Britain, the outspoken Education Secretary Michael Gove has claimed.

    Mr Gove said a break up of the United Kingdom would put Russia in a ’stronger position’ to dictate to the world.

    He claimed Britain was the ’second principal beacon of liberty’ in the world and its break up would weaken the West.

    Votez NON à l’indépendance de l’Écosse pour embêter Poutine et ne pas affaiblir le camp de la liberté.
    Ça, c’est une vraie argumentation… de guerre froide.

  • Russia demands investigation into claims chemical weapons were used in Ukraine amid frantic efforts to secure fresh ceasefire | Mail Online

    Pro-separatist rebels have claimed that people showing symptoms of chlorine poisoning had been admitted to hospital following an alleged attack carried out by Ukrainian Special Forces near Slavyansk.

    The accusations, which follow claims of ’phosphorous fire bombs’ being dropped on villages in southeastern Ukraine this month, led to Russian diplomats urging an investigation.

    Une vidéo du 15 juin montrerait un bombardement au phosphore blanc

  • This is where Russia will build its Arctic vessels | Barentsobserver

    Billions are invested in the Zvezda yard outside Vladivostok to make it capable of meeting Russia’s growing demand for ice-protected ships and platforms.

    By Atle Staalesen
    June 19, 2014

    Going Arctic, Rosneft eyes acquisition of Murmansk shipyard
    Rosneft moving into Northern Fleet territory

    It is the Far East which is the country’s top priority oil and gas region. This is where the quickest growing markeds are and where the raw material prices are the best. New fields, processing plants and pipelines are under planning and both Rosneft and Gazprom have signed major cooperation deals with China and several other Asian powers.

    #transport_maritime #russie #arctique

  • Norway and Russia to study sunken nuclear sub | Barentsobserver

    Norway and Russia launches a joint expedition to determine the condition of a sunken nuclear submarine and containers of radioactive waste dumped in the Barents Sea.

    –— ---

    Norway cashes out for securing old nuclear hulk | Barentsobserver

    The 40 years old “Serebryanka” is a re-built tanker transporting spent nuclear fuel from Russia’s scrapped nuclear powered submarines along the coast of the Kola Peninsula to Rosatomflot’s service base in Murmansk.

    In Norway, the vessel got famous in the early 90ties for her dumping of liquid radioactive waste in the Barents Sea.

    #arctique #nucléaire #norvège #russie #mourmansk #kola

  • Russia Prepares for an Expected U.S. Nuclear Attack Washington’s Blog

    In response to the Obama Administration’s Ukrainian coup that replaced the democratically elected pro-Russian President of Russia’s neighboring country by a regime that is seeking to join NATO and become a base for U.S. nuclear missiles, Russia is girding for America’s expected attack.

  • Guerre du gaz, l’exemple lituanien

    Opinion: Standing up to Gazprom. What Ukraine can learn from Lithuania | The Lithuania TribuneThe Lithuania Tribune

    Russia and its state gas company, Gazprom, cut their gas supply to Ukraine last week amid a dispute that includes Gazprom’s demand that Ukrainians pay $485 per thousand meters of gas – an 81-percent price increase. Yet weeks earlier, Gazprom agreed to cut Lithuania’s gas price to $370, a reported discount of about 20 percent. As Ukraine and much of Europe grope for ways to reduce their vulnerability to Russia’s politicized gas prices, how did Lithuania achieve this success? Can Ukraine do the same?
    But the main factor was that Lithuania is poised for the first time to buy from an alternate supplier. In December, the Klaipeda liquid natural gas (LNG) terminal will start operations, producing gas at a price lower than what Gazprom has been charging, Lithuanian Energy Minister Jaroslav Neverovic said last month. Klaipeda will be a “floating” terminal – a ship as long as three football fields that will anchor at a jetty in the harbor, unload LNG carriers and turn the liquid back into gas to be pumped ashore. With a projected capacity of 2-3 billion cubic meters (bcm) per year, the terminal will be able to can meet Lithuania’s annual consumption needs, which in 2012 were 2.7 bcm.

    The strategic importance of this project cannot be overstated. Most significantly, Lithuania will now be able to buy gas from world markets rather than solely from Gazprom
    Whether via LNG terminals or not, greater diversification of energy sources and routes should be Ukraine’s main priority reducing its vulnerability in its gas relationship with Russia. Already, Ukraine is working on making its pipeline connections to western neighbors reversible. This would let Kyiv import about 10 bcm of gas annually from Slovakia, Poland and Hungary. Energy efficiency in Ukraine has been less discussed but is an equally important priority. For decades Ukrainian households and industry have enjoyed cheap gas and have not pursued economic restructuring or energy conservation that could decreased their reliance on Russian gas. Thus, only Kyiv’s comprehensive reassessment of Ukraine’s energy sector – including securing alternative sources, routes, technologies, and economies – could facilitate a long-term solution to its ongoing gas conflict with Moscow. Meanwhile, let us hope that the current gas war is resolved before the coming winter months.

  • EUobserver / Nato says Russia funding anti-shale NGOs

    Nato chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen has accused Russia of funding NGOs which oppose shale gas.

    He made the controversial statement in a Q and A session at Chatham House, a London-based think tank, on Thursday (19 June).

    I have met allies who can report that Russia, as part of their sophisticated information and disinformation operations, engaged actively with so-called non-governmental organisations – environmental organisations working against shale gas – to maintain European dependence on imported Russian gas. At least that’s my interpretation and it adds a new aspect to that information campaign,” he said.

    #la_main_de_Moscou, le retour…

    On notera la formulation particulièrement alambiquée.
    Y a des copains qui m’ont dit que… En tous cas, c’est comme ça que je l’ai compris… et je tenais à vous le dire.

    Et ce n’est pas une position officielle de l’OTAN.

    Nato officials later told media the views on shale are Rasmussen’s own and do not reflect the alliance’s official position, but it published an audio file of his Chatham House remarks on its website.

    • C’était en réponse aux toutes dernières questions.
      L’intégralité de la transcription sur le site de l’OTAN

      En réponse à une question d’une journaliste de l’agence de presse officielle turque (Anadolu) sur l’extension de l’OTAN. Question reformulée par le modérateur

      MODERATOR: So in other words, have we… have we con— have we contributed somewhat to… to… to the Russian reaction, in other words…

      So let me stress that we have not accepted new members of NATO as part of any aggression against Russia. On the contrary, we have for more than 20 years now tried to include Russia in a constructive cooperation.
      But apart from all that, we adhere to a fundamental principle, namely that each and every nation has a fundamental right to decide itself its security policies and Alliance affiliation. Actually, that’s also enshrined in the OECE Charter for European Security, which was adopted in 1999 and also signed by Russia. So Russia has subscribed to that principle, that each and every nation has a right to decide itself.
      So NATO’s open-door policy follows from our NATO Treaty, Article 10, which states that we may invite any European country that is in a position to improve Euro-Atlantic security and further the principle upon which we have built our societies. Each such European country may be invited to join our Alliance.
      And these two things in combination, our open door and the right of every country to decide itself, has led to an expansion of NATO from 16 to 28 nations. That’s not directed against Russia. But it’s based on some fundamental principles, and of course our goal to create a Europe whole, free, and at peace. And we will not accept new dividing lines in… in Europe.
      So I… I completely dismiss that allegation, that our open-door policy should be a provocation against Russia.
      And just have a look also at economic figures — trade, investment, and other things — you will see that Russia has profited immensely from that zone of security, stability, and prosperity we have contributed to create in Eastern and Central Europe.
      So basically, it’s in Russia’s interest.

      So… but it goes beyond my imagination how the Kremlin thinks, actually.

      Ce qu’exprime la toute dernière phrase de ce passage semée effectivement avéré. Et me semble particulièrement inquiétant vues les fonctions de M. Rasmussen…

    • Greenpeace : on fume quoi au QG de l’OTAN ?

      Greenpeace dismissed Mr Rasmussen’s comments as “preposterous”.
      A spokesman said: "Greenpeace had thirty of its people locked up in Russian prisons last year, threatened with fifteen years in jail.
      "The idea we’re puppets of Putin is so preposterous that you have to wonder what they’re smoking over at Nato HQ.
      "Mr Rasmussen should spend less time dreaming up conspiracy theories and more time on the facts.
      "Fracked gas will probably cost more than Russian imports, there’s little chance fracking will generate more than a small fraction of Europe’s gas needs and it won’t even do that for at least ten years.
      “Greenpeace has detailed plans for energy policies which would remove the need for any Russian gas imports to Europe entirely.”

  • Russia Sent Tanks to Separatists in Ukraine, U.S. Says -

    Invérifiable ?

    DONETSK, Ukraine — The State Department said Friday that Russia had sent tanks and other heavy weapons to separatists in Ukraine, supporting accusations Thursday by the Ukrainian government.

    A convoy of three T-64 tanks, several BM-21 multiple rocket launchers and other military vehicles crossed the border near the Ukrainian town of Snizhne, State Department officials said. The Ukrainian Army reported Friday that it had destroyed two of the tanks and several other vehicles in the convoy.

    #ukraine #russie

  • Russia Just Finished A Submarine It Has Spent 20 Years Building | Popular Science

    C’est quand même admirable....

    There are college sophomores who were born after Russia began building its newest submarine. The K-329 Severodvinsk (re-designated the K-560 Severodvinsk in late 2013) is a submarine powered by a nuclear reactor and is made to hunt other submarines, ships, and targets on land. Construction started in 1993; the ship underwent sea trials in 2011; and on Tuesday, Russia finally commissioned the vessel and welcomed it into the Northern Fleet.

    Why did the submarine take so long to complete? Soviet collapse, mainly. The USSR, which had channeled much of Russia’s resources into building a military to compete with the United States throughout the Cold War, broke apart in the early 1990s, and when the government fell so did its ability to keep up with military production. In 2008, flush with money from the export of natural resources, Russia announced that nuclear submarines were a top priority. Today, with Russia actively reasserting its role in the world (read: invading neighboring Ukraine), Russia now has evidence that its fleet rebuilding efforts are starting to pay off.

    #russie #armée #armement #sous-marin

  • Energy minister says will ask Russia to lower gas prices

    Energy and Natural Resources Minister Taner Yıldız said on Thursday that the existing natural gas sales contract between Russia and Turkey stipulates that prices can be revised at the start of 2015, and so Turkey will submit a request to Russians to adjust its gas prices downward.

    Turkey gets about 42 million cubic meters of natural gas daily from the pipeline in western Ukraine, and in the event of an interruption on this line due to the current political crisis, the amount of gas lost cannot be made up elsewhere. This means that Turkey’s commercial and industrial heartland, the Marmara region and İstanbul in particular, may face a natural gas shortage. The minister, however, added that he didn’t believe there would be a serious problem in gas flow that would shake Turkey.

    Prices unlikely to fall

    The energy minister commented on the domestic market prices of natural gas, too. There has been tremendous pressure to hike prices, especially due to the social turbulence and chaos in the region, particularly in Iraq, Yılmaz said. He added that domestic market prices are hard to bring down, even if Russia concedes to lowering the price of the natural gas it sell to Turkey. “We are struggling not to transfer the increasing costs to households and industries. If we can get a reduction [from Russia] and pull down our costs, this will be used to decrease the losses of BOTAŞ [the state-owned Turkish Pipeline Corporation],” Yıldız noted.


  • Between Ukraine and Russia, Kazakhstan’s Chocolate Might Come Out a Winner · Global Voices

    When the struggle between Russia and the West over Ukraine was just warming up last summer, Russia unceremoniously elbowed Ukrainian chocolate-maker Roshen out of its domestic market. At the time, the move was widely interpreted as a punishment for Kiev’s pledge to sign an Association Agreement with the European Union, rather than join Moscow’s alternative – the Customs Union.

    The ban on Roshen imports was subsequently lifted in November after then-Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich gave in to Russian pressure and fatefully U-turned on the EU agreement. There was more bad news for Roshen in March this year – the Kremlin shut down the company’s Russian factory over a month after the Maidan protest movement toppled Yanukovich and just days after Crimea voted to join Russia and secede from Ukraine in a controversial referendum.

    With Roshen’s owner Petr Poroshenko recently becoming president of Ukraine and reiterating his endorsement of the pro-EU stance of the Maidan movement, Roshen’s foothold in the giant Russian market now appears to be a thing of the past.

    But what has all that got to do with Kazakhstan?

    As with Roshen [ru] before the beginning of the Ukraine crisis, over 50 percent of Rakhat’s exports go [ru] to the giant Russian market. “Every year, Rakhat’s chocolate becomes more in demand in Russia,” concluded [ru] Nadezhda Belimenko, the company’s marketing director last year. Following Roshen’s very public divorce with Russia, Kazakhstan’s chocolate patriots are hopeful that share will continue grow.