Oliver Stone Receives Gary Webb Award

For his brave work in the field of documentaries, director Oliver Stone was the 2016 recipient of the Gary Webb Freedom of the Press Award, which he received from Consortiumnews.com’s editor Robert Parry on June 3.

Robert Parry: Everyone knows Oliver Stone is a great screenwriter, director and producer. He’s done famous movies. But I also thought people should recognize that he has done very significant support for documentary projects. He has been involved in them, he has helped fund them.

Consortiumnews.com’s Editor Robert Parry gives the 2016 Gary Webb Freedom of the Press Award to Oliver Stone on June 3, 2017, in Arlington, Virginia. (Photo by Don North)

What he’s done, which is almost unique at this moment in American history, is he tries to deal with people who are often leaders of other countries that are under attack by the United States, or being harshly criticized. Some of these leaders are being demonized and they’re being turned into cardboard characters that can be easily denounced and dismissed.

And what Oliver Stone has done, like in his documentary about some of the leaders of South America [South of the Border], is to show this from their side, what they’re thinking, what makes them tick. And that is so important at a time when the United States can engage in horrible wars. We’ve seen the effects of demonizing leaders. And it’s not to say these leaders are great guys, no one’s suggesting that, but that when we demonize and make them not into human beings anymore, then it becomes very easy to go to war with them and their countries. We saw this happen with Saddam Hussein for instance, in Iraq, and to the horrible cost to the people of that region and to the American soldiers who had to execute this war.

So we’ve seen the consequences of not dealing honestly and fairly with people and not trying to explain to the public that these are multi-dimensional leaders. They are people that you may end up not liking, that you may disagree with, but you should at least know what drives them.

Oliver Stone is really one of the very few people with the courage to say, “I’m going to do this, I’m going to present these people as real people, and we can factor that in to how the American people want to feel about this issue.”

He supported a documentary project that I was interviewed in regarding Ukraine [Ukraine on Fire], trying to offer a more subtle, more nuanced view of what happened there and now he’s doing a program for Showtime, which will deal with interviews with Russian President Vladimir Putin, another person who, even more importantly than some of the others, we have to understand [The Putin Interviews].

Because the idea of rushing into a conflict with Russia in this kind of blind way that we did in Iraq and have done in other countries, dealing with a nuclear-armed Russia, is even more dangerous. Not just for the American people, but for all people. So this is why we wanted to honor Oliver Stone with this award.

I want to thank him for coming and accepting it.

Oliver Stone: Thank you very much. I’m very honored. I know who Gary Webb is and that’s a great story. That’s how I look at it as a dramatist, I suppose I’m a little cold that way. But it was a sad story. They made a movie, it died at the box office, it wasn’t happy, but it was a pretty good movie [Kill the Messenger]. Jeremy Renner played Gary Webb.

It just shows you how movies that go against the American image sometimes just don’t make it. First of all they don’t get made, it was very hard for those people to make that movie, it took many years, it died at the box office. I’ve been there. And you can make a movie that somehow is pro-American, put Tom Hanks in it, and you do pretty well, judging from the last Clinton Eastwood film about the pilot [Sully], which made a lot of money.

Oliver Stone speaking at the award ceremony after receiving the 2016 Gary Webb Freedom of the Press Award on June 3, 2017, in Arlington, Virginia. (Photo by Don North)

Making a film about Edward Snowden was another lesson for me in disappointment. It’s like making a film about [NSA whistleblower] Tom Drake. It took three years, actually, and when we finished all the work and had been talking to Ed, getting his side of the story, in fact it was his story, it was his point of view, it was not NSA in anyway, they wouldn’t cooperate.

But many people helped us, and Ed approved it and so on, [and then] we couldn’t get any financing out of America at first. We got everything to get started out of Germany and France and some other European countries. We made the movie with a limited budget, we got a small American distributor and the film died here.

We didn’t want to distribute it here first. We wanted to distribute it in France and start there. They wouldn’t let us because it was an American production and they wanted to stick to America first. But those are the kind of problems you have.

So it’s very hard to get these movies made, very hard. And on television, almost forget it. Because they can criticize inside a family, but it’s very rare that they will step outside and go to a broader criticism of our country. And we need this, we are filled with ourselves, we are filled with arrogance.

I’m even worse on this than Bob because Bob is tempered. It pisses me off sometimes, the arrogance of us, and the way we see the world. We so rarely are able to step outside of ourselves and have any empathy for “the other.” The other is what terrifies us, the other is always “the other.” There’s always the Creature from the Black Lagoon, the Red Planet.

I grew up in the 1950s, I was born in ’46, I still remember the first Cold War and it was horrifying. I was telling someone earlier that was younger than I that in the 1950s my father was social and he had many liberal friends from the 1930s who were socialists, Democrats, sometimes even ex-communists or communists.

They were in that society, the businessman, the “grey flannel suit society,” but there was no future for them. They could not really say what they meant because it would be noted. It would be noted they were a pink-o, or whatever they called it at that time, and then promotions would not come to them. They always were on the lower-income side of the equation.

The people who made money were the people who talked the American Game and that was the only way to get to the top. So it was a scary world, a conformist world, even more conformist than now. Far more conformist. People did not differ.

We — Peter [Kuznick], I, all these people here — we suffered in the American school system for that. I didn’t know history until [I started researching] the Untold History of the United States in 2008, I really started to study American history and all the sources.

Peter Kuznick, my co-author, [and the research], they gave me a college education at the age of 60. I needed it. Americans have no idea [of] their history, no idea. It’s really stunning. And we have taken this book and this documentary everywhere and we’ve made progress. Progressive people have supported this in reviews. The mainstream ignored it completely, completely. So these documentaries, going back to Castro, have been a struggle but they give me, sometimes, the best satisfaction I’ve ever had from my work.

I worry about Bob [Parry] very much. I’m a big supporter of his but I’m scared for him. I always say, “How can you say that and walk around your neighborhood?” This is Arlington, Virginia. Maybe he’s safer here than he would be somewhere else. We need Bob’s voice. He writes beautifully, first of all, which is important for a journalist. And he’s compelling and he tells a narrative. And what’s better is he repeats it, because you have to repeat as a teacher, for people to really start to memorize and remember. It’s a sad narrative and it’s so pathetic that we have reached this place of lying to ourselves. The lies do get bigger, more dangerous.

And now, in particular, perhaps because we’re getting older, I feel that it’s gotten to proportions of extreme exaggeration. Where now [the sentiment is] “Our president is a Manchurian Candidate for the Russians. The Russians are here, the Russians are in our schools, the Russians are in our businesses, the Russians are everywhere.” Whatever went wrong is blame-able on the Russians.

This is what’s really happened. That was somewhat the case with the hysteria of 1947, ‘48, ‘49, ‘50. It was a hysteria about not being strong enough. I don’t know how to overcome that because if you don’t feel strong enough, you’re never going to feel strong. You’re never going to have the weaponry, you’re never going to have the muscle to go down to the beach and take on the bully that’s always waiting for you.

Our fear is everywhere. It’s in our souls. And as long as we’re outwardly motivated to find an enemy, it’ll be terrorism, it’ll be Noriega, Hussein, Gaddafi, and Syria, of course, Mr. Assad. And now it’ll be, “the Russians are back.” It doesn’t end.

I’ve never seen it so personal as the demonization of Mr. Putin. In the old days we never insulted “Khrushchev’s Russia” or “Chernenko’s Russia.” Now it’s always Putin. There’s a death here, a gay person is killed there, it’s “Putin’s Russia.” It’s really crazy and bad journalism on top of that. Very bad.

So, we’ve got to hope for some of these young people to pick up the slack and start really investigating the news because you can get lazy very easily in this country. There’s a lot of consumerism, you can be happy and try to escape from this century. How long can we keep it up? I really don’t know. I think our karma is due. You can’t kill too many million people and get away with it forever. I’m surprised we got away with the Vietnam War, the way we did. And the reason I think we did was because we fought very hard against that reputation.

Mr. Reagan turned things around in his way and then of course Communism collapsed, so we always had a narrative to go. We ran out of a narrative from ’91 to about 2001, but we certainly made up a lot of lies. The kids don’t know this. So to them this is a new enemy.

I can tell you this from personal observation from being in Russia many times, is that the Russian people are not pushovers, at all. They did fight to the bitter end during World War II. They gave their lives in enormous quantities, they gave everything. They don’t give up. We can’t insult them and insult them and batter them like we have been doing and expect them to concede things that we expect. They won’t do it.

They will go to the end on this and it will be a big mistake for us. We will lose so much more than they do, because we’re so much richer. And I don’t understand why we can spend ten more times on our military than they do and still have this fear of them. It’s a fear that never goes away.

So, to the destruction of fear and to the enlightenment of the species, I salute you too [Robert Parry], for spreading the word. Thank you very much.

[To read Parry’s announcement of the award in May, click here.]

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70 comments for “Oliver Stone Receives Gary Webb Award

  1. Mild-ly Facetious
    June 14, 2017 at 2:32 pm

    Oliver Stone’s body of work marches in the foot print of the likes of Justinian – more recently Francis Boyle or Howard Zinn.
    The truth-tellers are rapidly dying.

    Oliver Stone Interviews Putin on U.S.-Russia Relations, 2016 Election, Snowden, NATO & Nuclear Arms
    STORYJUNE 14, 2017
    Watch Full Show

    http://www.democracynow.org

  2. Abe
    June 14, 2017 at 2:39 pm

    Robert Parry on awarding the Gary Webb Freedom of the Press Award to documentary film director Oliver Stone
    Flashpoints with Dennis Bernstein on Pacifica Radio KPFA (31 May 2017)
    https://archives.kpfa.org/data/20170531-Wed1700.mp3

    • evelync
      June 14, 2017 at 7:12 pm

      Thanks, Abe! for this link to Parry on Bernstein’s Flashpoints.

  3. J Dubyah
    June 14, 2017 at 2:52 pm

    Kudos x infinity.

    Always remember.. a mob killed even Christ; don’t expect better.

    • Sam F
      June 14, 2017 at 7:31 pm

      While no good deed goes unpunished, there are often soft landings in old age when the torch is passed, especially when so many know the good work that has been done.

    • JWalters
      June 15, 2017 at 8:52 pm

      Yes, and that mob was incited by the bankers who he kicked out of the temple. It was part of their arranging his execution over the initial objections of the governor. The temple incident was the last straw. A powerful bunch. Still are today.

  4. June 14, 2017 at 3:25 pm

    Oliver Stone, like Parry,and Gary Webb, has a mixed bag in telling the truth, though it is most appropriate for him to get this year’sWebb award.

    Stone has never gotten right the Agency’s role in domestic assassinations, and Parry and Webb never saw the East-West dimension of Iran-Conra which resulted at least in the killing of Swedish PMPalme, his weapons inspectpr Admiral Frederick Algernon. and North German politician Owe Barschell/.

    I did enjoy, though, being selected. along with Stone, by Jim DiEugenio’s Probe magazine in January 1996 as one of the spies who brought down Nixon corruptly, though it wasn’t anywhere near true.

  5. UIA
    June 14, 2017 at 3:27 pm

    UIA threw away the sun and has no company like a bad deal. Use way of Tao and don’t celebrate your birthday. Honorary degrees are for quacks, real estate agents and presidents of the United States. It’s worth a Trump University title!

    • Abe
      June 14, 2017 at 5:40 pm

      “UIA” obviously identifies with the glorious legacy of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UIA). Also known as Ukrayins’ka Povstans’ka Armiya (UPA), the UIA operated under the political leadership of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists—Bandera faction (OUN-B). Stepan Bandera aimed to make of Ukraine an ethnically pure one-party fascist dictatorship.

      In 1941, Bandera and Roman Shukhevych collaborated with Nazi Germany to form volunteer “Ukrainian nationalist” units: the “Nachtigall” and “Roland” Battalions, and the Schutzmannschaft 201 auxiliary police battalion that murdered Jews during “anti-partsan” operations in Ukraine and Belarus.

      Members of these units went on to form the UIA and the SS Volunteer Division Galizien. Shukhevych organized anti-Polish ethnic cleansings, and the UIA played a substantial role in terrorist atrocities against the Polish population of Volhynia and East Galicia.

      Speaking of honorary awards: On 22 January 2010, the outgoing President of Ukraine, Viktor Yushchenko, awarded Bandera and Shukhevych the posthumous title of “Hero of Ukraine”. The award was condemned by the European Parliament as well as Russian, Polish and Jewish organizations.

      Incoming president, Viktor Yanukovych, declared the award to Bandera illegal, an announcement confirmed by a court decision in April 2010. In January 2011 the award was officially annulled.

      During what has been named the EuroMaidan protests, portraits of Bandera and Shukhevych, alongside the wolfsangel, a former SS symbol, and the slogan “Glory to Ukraine! Glory to the heroes!” became more and more prominent especially among, but not limited to, ultra-nationalist protesters, often affiliated with the right wing Svoboda party (former Social-National Party of Ukraine) and Praviy Sektor (Right Sector).

      After the 2014 coup d’etat in Kiev, the new regime has lauded Bandera
      https://www.unian.info/kiev/1405475-kyivs-moskovskiy-avenue-renamed-after-stepan-bandera.html

  6. The Umbrella Lady
    June 14, 2017 at 3:42 pm

    Thanks to the Hidden Goddess of Small Favors for sending us both the sorely missed Gary Webb and now this wonderful film maker.

  7. June 14, 2017 at 4:11 pm

    It seems the only outcome from our present historical condition is for the divided ruling class elites to fight it out whereby one power base will defeat the other and fascism will rule supreme in the United States, which will give way to hyper-militarism as the inevitable condition for World War III. Militarism combined with corporatism is the definition of fascism under a deep-dark secret surveillance state. People will have given up any and all semblance of democratic freedoms in exchange for security in the New World Order. This is so, even though people like Marx, Engels and Lenin pointed out correctly that the only political-economic working class at the point of production, led by a revolutionary party, is the only viable path to overthrowing the present power structure based on capitalism. The revolution entails the violent overthrow, followed by a period of socialism, replaced over time by a withering away of the State and finally the establishment of a world communist order devoid of class conflict based on greed and exploitation of one group by another.

  8. Jack
    June 14, 2017 at 4:18 pm

    I cannot think of anyone more deserving of his award than Oliver Stone, perhaps the world’s greatest filmmaker.

    • JWalters
      June 15, 2017 at 9:01 pm

      It was only after doing a lot of research into the JFK assassination that I appreciated the meticulous accuracy of Stone’s film. For example, I thought the story in the conversation on the park bench with Mr. X might be dramatic filler. But no, every detail was accurate. Amazing work!

  9. June 14, 2017 at 4:24 pm

    Poignant words from Oliver Stone, it is sad to contemplate that this country has become so lost in delusion, and just when we humans need to face truth and facts head-on to cooperate with Russia and other nations as world citizens, not paranoid nationalists. I count “The Untold History of the United States” as one of my treasured books. Thank you, Oliver Stone, for your courageous work to bring out truth, and also to you, Robert Parry. We all have to keep digging to pull out the lies used to try to control us, they are like weeds choking the garden.

    • Nancy
      June 15, 2017 at 10:21 am

      I so admire these two for trying to talk sense to the American people. I just wish more were listening.

    • NormanB
      June 17, 2017 at 4:53 pm

      I agree, The Untold History was an excellent work but I was perplexed by the authors complete omission of the creation of the federal reserve and it’s disastrous impact on our country ever since.

  10. Mild-ly Facetious
    June 14, 2017 at 4:34 pm

    (When Justinian died, the Mediterranean was once again an Imperial Lake.

    But the empire was never really united and began dismantling within two years.

    Nonetheless, the reign of Justinian and Theodora ranks as the greatest in Byzantine history.)

  11. mike k
    June 14, 2017 at 5:10 pm

    My sincere thanks to both of you Robert and Oliver. Your courage and truth telling are inspiring.

  12. Robert
    June 14, 2017 at 5:43 pm

    Well done… terrific article, our MSM seems to delight in marginalizing truthful journalism. I was a journalism major in college back in 1973, but switched after being told what to say and how commercial journalism actually works. It’s always follow the money. I’m so glad Mr. Stone did the interview with President Putin. I have always like Russia and could never really understand why we couldn’t have a more productive relationship, made no sense to me. President Putin would be welcome in our home. We all live on the same planet for God’s sake…

    • JWalters
      June 15, 2017 at 9:06 pm

      Thanks for your testimony on how commercial journalism actually works.

  13. Realist
    June 14, 2017 at 7:00 pm

    What a study in contradiction: that this society could produce clear thinkers and teachers like Oliver Stone and Robert Parry and 97 warmongering fools in the senate at the same time.

    Thanks to Oliver and Robert for attempting to be peacemakers. A curse on the U.S. Senate for essentially declaring war on Russia (yet again) today with their additional far-reaching sanctions and usurpation of the president’s constitutional authority to conduct foreign policy. The product that Oliver and Robert brings to public arena is truth telling, what the senate offered today is nothing but more lies and provocations.

    • JWalters
      June 15, 2017 at 9:04 pm

      Those lies are bought with a slice of huge profits from war, along with threats, character assassinations, etc.

  14. UIA
    June 14, 2017 at 7:23 pm

    The reverse Robin Hood concept is failing. Bail the real estate people out to give to the people who built failed malls. Rob the NSA and run to Russia with the goods. Movie should be, we cut off our balls with butter knives for fun and profit and glory of Putin. Now they have banking problems in Panama hiding the stolen treasury loot. Trillions are gone. Pass out old revolvers and give them each one bullet. Raise the stakes. We’re raising leeks. Always start with a bigger pot than you think you’ll need. We’re not going silently. Bannons lamb op failed. Give him a big award. Bureau man of the year Lenin Award.

    • bobzz
      June 14, 2017 at 9:50 pm

      Congress: robbing from the poor and giving to the hoods.

  15. June 14, 2017 at 7:43 pm

    Rand Paul and Mike Lee were the two senators to vote against the sanctions on Russia. I figured Rand Paul would, he’s like a breath of fresh air in a room full of stale senators.

  16. Joe Tedesky
    June 14, 2017 at 8:24 pm

    What a cool thing to see. Seeing both of my favorite truth tellers acknowledge each other is fantastic. If this were not enough, honoring Oliver Stone with a Gary Webb Award is very appropriate considering how Gary Webb died for telling the truth.

    In a normal world, the liberal tv network would roll out the red carpet for the talents of Oliver Stone, but not inside of corporate America’s narrative controlled universe, which evades serious thought with endless childish dribble. In fact if our news media were small honest brokers for the truth then Robert Parry, and Oliver Stone would be media regulars, or even hosting their own programs more often.

    I value how Oliver Stone wishes to educate the young of our world. While always being cautious to not lecture I have suggested, and provided DVD and essays, for my grandchildren to read or watch in the hopes they will develop a sense of being able to decipher our worlds problems.

    I’d love to see Robert Parry write the bases for a Oliver Stone documentary or movie.

    • Joe L.
      June 15, 2017 at 12:24 am

      One that you also might like is Australian/British journalist John Pilger who also is a contributor to this site and has documentaries all the way back to Vietnam. Some of his notable work, that can be seen on YouTube are “War on Democracy”, “Stealing a Nation” etc. We need more truth tellers especially with this latest push to “censor” by citing fake news.

      • Joe Tedesky
        June 15, 2017 at 2:21 am

        I always enjoy John Pilger. I like when his articles are posted here. Yes add Pilger to list.

    • Kiza
      June 15, 2017 at 1:00 am

      I find that Mr Robert Parry has attracted some truly special US people to his zine. Mr Parry’s commitment to the truth is only matched by the commenters at his zine, especially those living in US. Because, as Oliver Stone says – it is so easy to become complacent whilst living in US, still a land of plenty compared to the rest of the world. To retain love for truth in such environment is a big challenge and Garry Web before, as well as Oliver Stone, Robert Parry and all the commenters here (especially including Joe) are living up to this challenge. This is why the trolls who occasionally visit here simply cannot comprehend that someone would “spout polished Kremlin propaganda” (as they call it) for no financial return then only for the sake of aiming for the truth. This is the same feeling which Oliver Stone describes above of being rejected just for trying to tell the inconvenient truth. Someone on another website commented that US is resembling a society in which any lie, any deception, any corruption becomes accepted as a normal state of affairs and this would be a real tragedy for any society. It is not the prevailing conformists then the extraordinary people mentioned above who stand in the way of the normalization of crime and turning of society into wilderness.

      • Joe Tedesky
        June 15, 2017 at 2:32 am

        Oliver Stone ought to craft a movie out of the point you are making Kiza. Someone should document what’s going on with a society who creates out of nowhere all new meanings for words like ‘troll’ and use terms like ‘fake news’ in order to control the narrative. Look at President Trump, and then say to yourself, how did we get here? This whole thing is so crazy, that we could go to a earth ending war over a made up accusation – Russia-Gate! What genius diplomacy is that?

  17. evelync
    June 14, 2017 at 8:40 pm

    Thank you very much, Robert Parry, for your courageous unfiltered reporting.

    And also for explaining on the recent kpft Bernstein Flashpoints (that Abe linked to above) exactly why you chose Oliver Stone as the recipient of this year’s Gary Webb Award – namely Stone’s use of documentaries to shed a bit of light on how the U.S. “villain of the day” is used by TPTB to drive the country into unnecessary and dangerous wars.

    It is immoral IMO for our “leaders” to trick Americans into acquiescing to unnecessary, trumped up regime change wars by focusing our attention on one dictator/president/insurgent/etc while ignoring the millions of people living in those countries.
    One “demon” blown out of all proportion, ignoring the millions and millions of innocent people, families, culturally diverse people who will suffer; ignoring the thousands, maybe 100’s of thousands of our innocent soldiers, asked to risk their lives against a manufactured threat.

    Diplomacy is ignored. Decades of regime change wars have made this country less safe and created mass dislocation and suffering.

    And while we’re on the subject of people who are standing up against the faux war propaganda, I was pleased to hear Bernie Sanders Senate speech against arming Saudi Arabia and victimizing millions in Yemen.
    A few people (not authors here, but occasional commenters) attacked Sanders for not standing up to the war hawks. Not so.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WnGSG5VAYns

    http://theprogressivewing.com/614-news-roundup-bernie-blasts-the-saudi-arms-sales-sanders-catalyzed-a-cultural-shift-on-single-payer-more/

    Thanks also to Ray McGovern who joined Bernstein’s kpft show following Robert Parry’s interview.

    whew…where is Arthur Miller (The Crucible) when we need him. He too, as a playwright, tried to dig down looking for truth…often very uncomfortable truths…..

    • Abe
      June 14, 2017 at 10:19 pm

      Having learned the “Art of the Deal” in the late ’80s, Bernie Sanders falls in line like a good boy where it counts.

      Sanders voted Yea to Senate Amendment 232 (the aptly named Crap-o Amendment) to Senate Bill 722 “Countering Iran’s Destabilizing Activities Act of 2017”

      Bernie has toasted himself for 2020, but Dem voters still ain’t got a clue.

      • Realist
        June 15, 2017 at 2:15 am

        Bernie will be nearly 80 in 2020 and is not running for prez again. His time was now and that’s passed. Bernie’s job will be to anoint the non-establishment Democratic candidate in the next elections. The big unknowns are: Firstly, will the world still be here in 2020? Secondly, will the economy and international tensions deteriorate to the point where the people will again want to choose an outsider for the job? Finally, will the establishment reassert its monolithic control of both parties and block any possibility of reform candidates (and that assumes even Trump to be an outsider)?

        • evelync
          June 15, 2017 at 9:10 am

          as I said in my response to Abe – I’d vote for Tulsi Gabbard, Nina Turner, maybe Tammy duckworth, Bernie Sanders, even No-Regime-Change-Wars Gary Johnson (even tho I don’t agree with libertarian policies)

          I don’t care if Bernie’s 80 or 100 his mind is as good as it was when he was younger and he seems to have more energy than my children, actually than some of my grandchildren!

          I agree with the other stuff you said. thanks!

      • evelync
        June 15, 2017 at 9:05 am

        https://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=115&session=1&vote=00144#position

        There were only 2 nays to this amendment – Paul of KY and Lee of Utah with 1 “NO” vote by Van Holland.

        It pertained to Russia apparently. Duckworth, Wyden, Merkley, Udall, Markey, Murray, among all other Dems except Van Holland, also voted “yes”.
        doesn’t mean it was the right thing to do.
        I don’t understand what it did do.

        But I’m not sure why you chose this vote to make a point.

        Bernie has not said he wants to run in 2020. But he is IMO trying to reform the Democratic Party – WHY? – because he says that with the existential threat of Climate Change, he doesn’t think he and other activists can waste time taking 20 years to form a new party.

        I’d vote for Tulsi Gabbard, Nina turner, Bernie Sanders. i’d even vote for libertarian Gary Johnson- not that I agree with Libertarian policies, I don’t. BUT he spoke out against REGIME CHANGE WARS.

        thanks

    • Abe
      June 15, 2017 at 1:08 pm

      “We can’t waste time taking 20 years to form a new party” has been the whine of so-called “independent” and “revolutionary” Democratic Party sheepdogs since 1967.

      Prodigious kvetching aside, when and where his voice and vote really counts, Bernie has been all in for America’s regime change wars. Sure, he makes excuses and afterward bemoans the easily predictable civilian casualties. But like rest of the warmongers in the Senate, he has repeatedly enabled US regime change wars with his votes.

      Make no mistake, the “Countering Iran’s Destabilizing Activities Act of 2017” is an act of regime change war.

      And additional sanctions imposed on the Russian Federation are an act of regime change war.

      The US has no wish to “combat terrorism and illicit financing” because illicitly financed terror has been an effective tool for regime change war.

      “Enough of the emails” Bernie’s speeches remain irrelevant is because he always, ALWAYS stops short of saying what is really so (like the fact that the Benghazi emails revealed Clinton’s involvement in illicitly financed terror and two regime change wars).

      I sincerely respect your moral and political values, evelync. However, every figure you mention, indeed everyone who is not actively creating a new and truly independent political party, and vigorously supporting a genuine anti-war movement in the United States, is condemning this nation and the world to more regime change wars.

      And the final outcome of this regime change war path is “nuclear combat toe to toe with the Roosskies” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ynY5NvYsZY

      Thanks to Oliver Stone, Putin has seen the movie.

      President Ripper obviously has not.

      This is it. The time for real revolution, global peace and true international cooperation is now. But we have to get real.

      Fifty years ago, Martin Luther King Jr. told a packed audience at Riverside Church in New York, “The world now demands a maturity of America that we may not be able to achieve.”

      Unfortunately, the truth is that the American people have deeply indoctrinated for decades to be terrified by revolution… and reality.

      Reality is revolutionary. And we don’t have another fifty, twenty, or even ten years to get real.

      • Abe
        June 15, 2017 at 2:46 pm
        • Abe
          June 15, 2017 at 6:28 pm

          At the dawn of the nuclear age, its principal architect, Robert Oppenheimer, spoke of a stable standoff between nuclear powers. They would be held back from attacking one another by mutual fear, instead circling endlessly “like a pair of scorpions trapped in a bottle.”

          Subsequently, political scientist Albert Wohlstetter pointed out that this stability would be lost if a situation arose in which advantage accrued to the first to attack. Then deterrence would at best be “a delicate balance of terror.”

          Unknown to most, the balance is today at its most delicate. President Trump has inherited from previous administrations a balance of power tilted so far in favour of the U.S. that it might be advised at some awful moment of crisis to resort to a “first strike.”

          Maintaining peace between the superpowers under these conditions will demand the highest level of skill and restraint from the two leaders. The auguries for this are not promising, since the delicacy of the balance has been hidden from public view.

          What brought about this new imbalance? We owe it to a substantial increase in lethality of U.S. nuclear-armed submarine-based missiles. This makes it possible that a U.S. strike might destroy most of Russia’s missiles, still largely land-based. This new situation is described by three weapons experts in the March 1 issue of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

          https://www.thestar.com/opinion/commentary/2017/03/20/us-first-strike-advantage-heightens-risk-of-nuclear-war-polanyi.html

        • Abe
          June 15, 2017 at 6:31 pm

          How US nuclear force modernization is undermining strategic stability: The burst-height compensating super-fuze
          By Hans M. Kristensen, Matthew McKinzie, and Theodore A. Postol
          http://thebulletin.org/how-us-nuclear-force-modernization-undermining-strategic-stability-burst-height-compensating-super10578

      • Realist
        June 15, 2017 at 5:21 pm

        Fifty years ago, Martin Luther King Jr. told a packed audience at Riverside Church in New York, “The world now demands a maturity of America that we may not be able to achieve.”

        Can you imagine letting another fifty years go by and changing nothing? The world will change and leave us behind in our dysfunctional society, or they will extirpate us as one does a cancer. The smug satisfaction of feeling “indispensable” is a very dangerous illusion.

        • Abe
          June 15, 2017 at 6:46 pm

          Add the even more dangerous illusion that one is “invincible”.

          Since the dawn of the nuclear era, the basis of U.S. nuclear doctrine has been that any enemy “first strike” would be met by an overwhelming response. But no U.S. president has ruled out the possibility of launching a nuclear attack first.

          The Congressional Budget Office has projected spending for modernization of the United States nuclear arsenal through 2024 at about $348 billion.

      • evelync
        June 16, 2017 at 12:20 pm

        Bernie Sanders and Rand Paul – the only 2 senators who voted against sanctioning Russia and Iran yesterday:
        https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-sanctions-idUSKBN1962AU

        https://youtu.be/CIrn1Wnu6QI?t=267

        Sanders statement –
        Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) issued the following statement Thursday after he voted against a bill that would impose new sanctions on Iran and Russia:

        “I am strongly supportive of the sanctions on Russia included in this bill. It is unacceptable for Russia to interfere in our elections here in the United States, or anywhere around the world. There must be consequences for such actions. I also have deep concerns about the policies and activities of the Iranian government, especially their support for the brutal Assad regime in Syria. I have voted for sanctions on Iran in the past, and I believe sanctions were an important tool for bringing Iran to the negotiating table. But I believe that these new sanctions could endanger the very important nuclear agreement that was signed between the United States, its partners and Iran in 2015. That is not a risk worth taking, particularly at a time of heightened tension between Iran and Saudi Arabia and its allies. I think the United States must play a more even-handed role in the Middle East, and find ways to address not only Iran’s activities, but also Saudi Arabia’s decades-long support for radical extremism.”
        https://www.sanders.senate.gov

        his statement ended with: (my bold )
        I BELIEVE THAT THESE NEW SANCTIONS COULD ENDANGER THE VERY IMPORTANT NUCLEAR AGREEMENT THAT WAS SIGNED BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES, ITS PARTNERS AND IRAN IN 2015. THAT IS NOT A RISK WORTH TAKING, PARTICULARLY AT A TIME OF HEIGHTENED TENSION BETWEEN IRAN AND SAUDI ARABIA AND ITS ALLIES. I THINK THE UNITED STATES MUST PLAY A MORE EVEN-HANDED ROLE IN THE MIDDLE EAST, AND FIND WAYS TO ADDRESS NOT ONLY IRAN’S ACTIVITIES, BUT ALSO SAUDI ARABIA’S DECADES-LONG SUPPORT FOR RADICAL EXTREMISM.”

        that’s a helluva lot better than the other 98 senators could do…

        • Abe
          June 16, 2017 at 5:36 pm

          Sanders voted in favor of the Crap-o Amendment, and in his Senate floor speech he reiterated that he’s “strongly supportive of sanctions against Russia”.
          https://twitter.com/SenSanders/status/872490575748104192

          What Sanders really frets about is jeopardizing Obama’s cherished foreign policy legacy, the Iran Nuclear Agreement.

          Sanders notes that this is “a time of heightened tension between Iran and Saudi Arabia and its allies”.

          However, Sander’s view that “the United States must play a more even-handed role in the Middle East” has nothing to do with any kind of actual fair and impartial treatment of nations in the region.

          Pro-Israel Sanders is perfectly happy to ignore Israel’s nuclear, chemical and biological weapons.

          Sanders professes his “deep concerns about the policies and activities of the Iranian government”.

          He’s merely unhappy with the Senate’s lack of attention to Saudi activities.

          Sanders conveniently neglects to mention the de facto Saudi-Israeli alliance and its activities against Iran and Syria.

          And Sanders assiduously avoids any mention of Israeli and US support for Saudi-backed terrorists in Syria.

          “Saudi Arabia’s decades-long support for radical extremism” has culminated in the very forces that the Syrians, Iranians and Russians are defeating in Syria.

          All Sanders can do is grumble about Iranian “support for the brutal Assad regime”.

        • Abe
          June 16, 2017 at 7:01 pm

          Not only ain’t Bernie’s token “nay” vote a helluva lot better than the other 98 senators could do.

          It’s simply Sheepdog Sanders performing his other major function: making the Senate not appear to be the monolithic pro-Israel voting bloc that it truly is these days.

          Sanders falls in line and out of line like a good boy where it really counts for Zion.

          Like white phosphorus (known in Vietnam as “Willie Pete” and favored by Israel for use in densely populated neighborhoods), Bernie the Bomber’s legacy of political betrayal is pyrophoric (self-igniting) and burns fiercely to the bone.

          Feel the Bern.

          Really.

          Feel it. Then get busy.

          • evelync
            June 16, 2017 at 9:11 pm

            ok, I read several articles on where Bernie stands vis a vis Israeli’s vs Palestinians:
            I thought his speech to J Street in February 2017 published by the Israeli newspaper Haaretz covered his views in more depth than the other articlesI found:
            From that speech:
            “…But as you all know, there was another side to the story of Israel’s creation, a more painful side. Like our own country, the founding of Israel involved the displacement of hundreds of thousands of people already living there, the Palestinian people. Over 700,000 people were made refugees.
            To acknowledge this painful historical fact does not “delegitimize” Israel, any more than acknowledging the Trail of Tears delegitimizes the United States of America.
            But I didn’t come here today simply to revisit history, or to say one historical narrative is wrong and one is right. My question here today is: OK, what now? Where do Israelis and Palestinians go from here? What should be U.S. policy to end this conflict, to end this fifty-year long occupation, and enable a better, more secure and prosperous future for Jews and Arabs, Israelis and Palestinians alike?
            This decades-long conflict has taken so much from so many. Nobody gains when Israel spends an enormous part of its budget on the military. Nobody gains when Gaza is obliterated and thousands are killed, wounded, or made homeless. Nobody gains when children are trained to be suicide bombers. Nobody gains when year after year, decade after decade, the talk is about war and hatred rather than peace and development. Think of the incredible potential that is being lost when Israelis and Palestinians are not coming together effectively to address the environmental and economic challenges of the region. Our vision, a vision we must never lose sight of, is creating a Middle East where people come together in peace and democracy to create a region in which all people have a decent life. I understand that, given the realities of today, that vision appears distant and maybe even far-fetched. But it is a vision and a dream that we cannot afford to give up on.
            So what should we as progressives – American progressives, Israeli progressives and progressives globally — demand of our governments in bringing this future about?
            Let’s take a moment to talk about values.
            It’s often said that the U.S.-Israel relationship is based on “shared values.” I think this is correct, but then we also have to ask: What do we mean by this? What values are we talking about?
            As progressives, here are the values we share: We believe in democracy. We believe in equality. We believe in pluralism. We are strongly opposed to xenophobia. We respect and we will protect the rights of minorities.
            These are values that are shared by progressives in this country and across the globe. These values are based upon the very simple notion that we share a common humanity. Whether we are Israelis or Palestinians or Americans, whether we are Jews, Christians, Muslims, or of another religion, we all want our children to grow up healthy, to have a good education, have decent jobs, drink clean water and breathe clean air, and to live in peace.
            That’s what being human is about. And our job is to do everything that we can to oppose all of the political forces, no matter what side they may be on, who try to tear us apart.
            Earlier this month, at a White House press conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Trump was asked whether he supported a two-state solution. His answer was, “I’m looking at two-state and one-state, and I like the one that both parties like.” As if someone asked him whether he preferred Coke to Pepsi.
            We should be clear: The two-state solution, which involves the establishment of a Palestinian state in the territories occupied in 1967, has been bipartisan U.S. policy for many years. It is also supported by an overwhelming international consensus, which was reaffirmed in December by the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334. While I understand that they’ve walked that statement back, the casual manner in which President Trump appeared to abandon that policy was extremely concerning, but also unfortunately typical of the carelessness with which he has managed American foreign policy thus far.
            The president said that he supports a peace deal, but this doesn’t mean much. The real question is: Peace on what terms, and under what arrangement? Does “peace” mean that Palestinians will be forced to live under perpetual Israeli rule, in a series of disconnected communities in the West Bank and Gaza? That’s not tolerable, and that’s not peace.
            If Palestinians in the occupied territories are to be denied self-determination in a state of their own, will they receive full citizenship and equal rights in a single state, potentially meaning the end of a Jewish majority state? These are very serious questions with significant implications for America’s broader regional partnerships and goals.
            Friends, the United States and the State of Israel have a strong bond, going back to the moment of Israel’s founding. There is no question that we should be, and will be Israel’s strong friend and ally in the years to come. At the same time, we must recognize that Israel’s continued occupation of Palestinian territories and its daily restrictions on the political and civil liberties of the Palestinian people runs contrary to fundamental American values.
            As former Secretary of State John Kerry rightly said in his speech in December, ‘Friends need to tell each other the hard truths.’ And the hard truth is that the continued occupation and the growth of Israeli settlements that the occupation sustains, undermines the possibility of peace. It contributes to suffering and violence.
            As the United Nations Security Council reaffirmed on December 23, the settlements also constitute a flagrant violation of international law. I applaud the Obama administration’s decision to abstain from vetoing UN Security Council Resolution 2334. Those of us who really support Israel have got to tell the truth about policies are hurting chances of reaching a peaceful resolution.
            >> Explained: How Big an Obstacle Are Israeli Settlements to Peace? >>
            I recognize that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is one of the most emotionally fraught issues in U.S. politics, involving as it does the legitimate historical claims, identities and security of two peoples in the same region.
            So let me be very clear: to oppose the policies of a right-wing government in Israel does not make one anti-Israel or an anti-Semite. We can oppose the policies of President Trump without being anti-American. We can oppose the policies of Netanyahu without being anti-Israel.  We can oppose the policies of Islamic extremism without being anti-Muslim.
            As I said during my presidential campaign, peace means security not only for every Israeli, but also for every Palestinian. It means supporting self-determination, civil rights, and economic well-being for both peoples.
            These ideas are based in the very same shared values that impel us to condemn anti-Semitic bigotry, condemn anti-Muslim bigotry, and to make our own society better. These are the ideas that should guide us. The values of inclusiveness, security, democracy, and justice should inform not only America’s engagement with Israel and Palestine, but with the region and the world.
            The United States will continue its unwavering commitment to the safety of the State of Israel, but we must also be clear that peacefully resolving this conflict is the best way to ensure the long-term safety of both peoples, and for making America more secure.
            To my Israeli friends here with us today: we share many of the same challenges. In both our countries we see the rise of a politics of bigotry and intolerance and resentment. We must meet these challenges together. As you struggle to make your society better, more just, more egalitarian, I want to say to you: Your fight is our fight.
            http://www.haaretz.com/us-news/1.774304

            If you find this speech proves your point, then I guess we’ll just have to disagree.

            “Cuase It’s a helluva lot better perspective than I hear from most other elected officials in the U.S. Congress.
            He was not one of the 5 Democratic Senators who voted for the recent arms deal to Saudi Arabia.
            If he’s not in line with where you’d like him to be, that’s your right..
            But from where I sit, he’s not scared of AIPAC like Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.
            And he speaks out for Palestinian rights which few in the Senate do.
            So he’s on the right path IMO.

            cheers!

          • Abe
            June 17, 2017 at 12:37 am

            I am an American. Bernie’s stand on Israel-Palestine is not my concern.

            Sanders was not running for President of J Street in 2016.

            (On second thought, perhaps he was and still is.)

            Real concern for “America’s broader regional partnerships and goals” demands a far more critical stand regarding the policies and activities of the Israeli government than Sanders is willing to embrace.

            In the end, Bernie’s “fight” remains more pro-Israel than pro-American. And his Russia-bashing is utterly deplorable.

            Sanders’ presidential campaign ended in betrayal because he chose the decidedly pro-Israel politics of the Democratic Party over interests of the American people.

        • Abe
          June 18, 2017 at 3:16 pm

          “With Bernie of late, we have gotten yet more evidence that he is in fact the imperialist and sheep-dogging fake-socialist Democratic Party company man that some of us the “hard radical” Left said he was. ‘Bomber Bernie’ (as he was quite properly nicknamed by Vermont peace activists when he jumped on board Bill Clinton’s criminal attack on Serbia in 1999) let his imperialist colors fly regarding Donald Trump’s ridiculous, dog-wagging missile-launch into Syria this last spring […]

          “One is not a ‘perfectionist’ just because they can’t get behind a politician who claims to a social democrat – even a democratic socialist – but who can’t seem to grasp the elementary moral and practical (fiscal and programmatic) contradiction between (a) calling for progressive policy and (b) backing the giant Pentagon System and the historically unmatched global empire it equips and staffs […]

          “(There was also this strange and repellent line in Sanders speech [at the People’s Summit 2017 in Chicago]: ‘Even a very conservative Republican president like George W. Bush understood that one of the important functions of a leader in a democratic society is to bring people together, not separate them.’ That statement, which must be some kind of reference to Dubya rallying the nation [in nationalistic hatred] after the 9/11 jetliner attacks [the hatred was then exploited for the arch-criminal U.S. invasion of Iraq], is so stupid and reactionary it almost defies belief.)”

          Twelve Blasphemous Thoughts: Some Summer Sacrilege
          By Paul Street
          https://www.counterpunch.org/2017/06/13/twelve-blasphemous-thoughts-some-summer-sacrilege/

  18. June 14, 2017 at 10:43 pm

    Absolutely, Abe, Bernie is a good boy! Crapo Amendment is definitely an apt metaphor.

  19. JJ R
    June 15, 2017 at 3:07 am

    Oliver Stone is right in his views of history, but still is constrained by his liberal conditioning and capitalist pressures not to reveal the truth and inhumanity of the capitalist system. Stone states that he cannot “understand why we can spend ten more times on our military than they do [the Russians] and still have this fear of them. It’s a fear that never goes away.” The answer of course is that its not fear — it’s the unlimited greed in the system to make profits at any expense and “to hell” with humanity. Under this belief there is no limit to exploitation of others or the genocidal wars which it inflicts upon its “terrorist enemies.” That is the reason which few in the west understand or is willing to reveal to the people in the world. However, even the hated Putin or the Russian television RT.Com is reluctant to explain to this to the world as such as they have become more capitalists than socialists themselves.

    • Nancy
      June 15, 2017 at 10:29 am

      Thanks for pointing this out.

    • Antiwar7
      June 15, 2017 at 1:44 pm

      But fear is used to market it to the 99%.

    • evelync
      June 16, 2017 at 4:04 pm

      thanks JJ R.

      about that ‘fear that never goes away’ …please forgive me for posting one more time, in case you’ve already seen it (over and over, lol) but it addresses, I think that “fear”.
      Hajimu Masuda’s analysis of Cold War delusional thinking (that’s still with us) that permeated whole populations and propelled the Cold Wars forward.
      Here’s a summary of his excellent book COLD WAR CRUCIBLE:
      http://harvardpress.typepad.com/hup_publicity/2015/02/social-politics-imagined-realities-masuda-hajimu.html

      And I think in your comment you are asking the big question what exactly was/is behind that fear? what drove it if it was not based on reality but based on illusions? ……and then ask: “who profits from that fear mongering and spreading those illusions? Eisenhower would tell us – the MIC, including the banks and all the other hangers on that profit from war???

      I was an economics major. I think Adam Smith was onto something when he discussed the “invisible hand” in the 1700’s,
      that there’s an unpredictability about economic interactions that gets “resolved” in a functioning market place with a level playing field where goods and services are exchanged.
      I think that no human beings are smart enough to “manage” an economy or a pricing/supply structure ‘cause as Robby Burns said “the best laid plans o’ mice and men gang aft aglay”.

      That said, what we now have is not a free and open, fair marketplace with a level playing field. We have oligopolies running (mismanaging) things and setting rules that favor their financial interest through a corrupted Congress that tips the scales in favor of the wealthiest and the MIC.
      It’s a disgrace.

      I was not able to get through Adam Smith’s (the father of capitalism) tome, “The Wealth of Nations’, when I was in school. But I picked it up at the library a few years back and that guy was deeply into a moral outlook on what was fair and honest. (To use Woody Allen’s phrase in one of his movies ) – If Adam Smith “came back and saw what was being done in his name he’d never stop throwing up”.
      So I think, for example, that communism would fail because even the “best and the brightest” could not “manage” the economy setting artificial prices and controlling supply.
      But we have a runaway mindless oligarchy of too big to fail Big Banks skimming maybe 30% off the labor of working people…..

      Our most recent example of the dangers of the current state of affairs;

      In the 1990’s Bill Clinton shredded the Glass Steagall Act which had been put in place after the great depression and had succeeded in maintaining a sustainable economy for 60 years, including for working people. Commercial Banks with insured deposits, guaranteed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. Government could only use those funds to make secured/safe loans to borrowers. Clinton and Congress ripped that up and allowed those insured deposits to be used for highly leveraged bets that eventually destabilized the economy.
      Then Obama bailed out the bettors but left Main Street to fend for itself…..and not very well at all.

      Obama could have, IMO, taken the TARP funds to help stabilize Main Street by rewriting their mortgages to 30 year affordable debt with subsidized interest rates – that would have stabilized the sub prime mortgage market and the bets would have been zeroed out.
      yes that is a “managed” solution, but necessary given the irresponsible predatory actions of the Big Banks.

      Wall Street should not be allowed to gamble with taxpayer money.

      We need transparency and a level playing field.
      And plenty more to set things right so average people can thrive instead of being ripped off.

      We need some very big changes to where average people share in the wealth of the new economy where wealth is created in part by the advances in technology….

  20. June 15, 2017 at 12:26 pm

    The US, which is the belly of corporate capitalism, has led the way for the world to follow its example lest these other countries get left out of the picture and become nothing more than vassal states, which they certainly do not want to do. South America was making some headway in getting rid of government plunder politics, so the power masters sent their US henchmen right back in to overturn populist politicians. They’re working very hard in Venezuela and Brazil. It is true that capitalism must be replaced with a system that preserves rather than exploits, but that’s hard to do with greedy plunderers keeping power.

  21. jo6pac
    June 15, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    Thanks RP and I have one very small problem, Mr. Stone it’s Dr. Assad. Mr. Stone well deserved and Thanks for the honest reporting on V. Putin.

  22. TARAS TCHAIKOVSKY
    June 15, 2017 at 7:52 pm

    Mr Stone should read the history of Ukraine to find out what it is like living next door to a bully who has always coveted the rich and fertile land of Ukraine and has constantly invaded and slaughtered its people.
    Russia conspired with France to rein in Germany early last century that sparked the First World War.
    After the Russian revolution of 1917, Russia invaded 20 neighbouring countries to impose their new-found philosophy of communist imperialism that caused death and misery to tens of millions.
    After the revolution of 2014 in Ukraine, Russia invaded Ukraine to steal territory and protect its interest in the Black Sea port of Sevastopol not protect the Russian speakers there.
    Russia made a pact with Hitler to invade and wipe Poland off the map that started the Second World War.
    Russia went on to invade Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Romania/Moldova, Iran, Yugoslavia, Finland, Norway, Korea, Japan and China.
    It was the west that saved Russia from defeat in WWII and it was not only the Russians that fought to the bitter end during that war.
    After the war Russia invaded Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Afghanistan, Chechnya, Georgia and now Ukraine – again. While Crimeans were “given” a “democratic” vote (at the point of a gun) the Chechens were not given this opportunity at the point of a gun.
    Russians also forget their pogroms against not only the Jews but more particularly against Ukrainians when some 10 million were starved to death in an artificial famine called the Holodomor in 1932-33 orchestrated by Moscow to bring Ukraine to its knees and be subject to the failed communal farming program of the regime.
    Much like Stalin, Putin is a liar, thief, cheat, thug and murderer but, hey he can’t be all bad because he does all this to make Russians proud again and the Russian people love him for it so he too will be venerated.
    Russians are imperialists who live in a squalor that they are fooled into believing is paradise and are led by dictators who deprive them of their freedom and rob them blind but give them pride of conquest in return.

    • Realist
      June 16, 2017 at 3:22 am

      Thank you for the Ukrainian propaganda and revisionist history. It was sadly amusing. Even without any formal training in history one should know better. For example, my grandfather was drafted by the U.S. government and sent to Russia to fight against the Bolsheviks in an American invasion of that country–an attempt at regime change as soon as the Soviet Union was birthed. He brought a purse full of 19th century kopeks back as souvenirs which have been sitting around for about a hundred years now and which I am looking at right this minute. Some of the silver pieces were made into jewelry. Then there are the photographs and picture post cards. This history was real, not your fabrications.

      Russia LOST its empire in WWI, it did NOT invade others or expand after the revolution, it contracted greatly as did Germany and, especially, Austria’s Hapsburg empire. Ukraine as a country was in fact established for the first time ever as the Soviet Union re-organised after the war and the revolution and to it was foolishly added provinces of Novorussiya and Poland. The “satellite” countries of the Warsaw pact were organised after WWII to buffer against yet another Western invasion of the Russian heartland. Ukraine was not a satellite, it was part of the Soviet Union itself and several premiers of that country WERE Ukrainians, including Khrushchev who transferred Crimea from Russia to Ukraine for the first time since Catherine the Great had acquired the territory from the Turks, so you were not oppressed you were among the oppressors.

      Notice how quickly the Crimeans gave you the bum’s rush when they finally got the chance? I doubt if you have ANY of your facts right. Propaganda is cheap, especially calling people murderers without offering a shred of evidence. Ukraine will never advance as an efficient, free modern country until it gets its educational system functioning and admits the actual historical realities. If you are young, you probably are unaware of your brainwashing. (You should know that IMF oligarchs will walk away with your national treasury.) If you are old, you long ago sold your soul to the Devil, knowing the sins of your people. In either case, you prefer to worship mass murderers like Bandera. And, America is reprehensible for exploiting your prejudices to use as a cudgel against Russia. Jessica is too easy on you. Honest people should have no time for your lot. Next! (NO, I do not suffer fools gladly.)

  23. June 15, 2017 at 8:59 pm

    Oliver Stone is not ignorant of that part of Russia’s past, when it was controlled by tsars and then when it became the Soviet Union after the Bolshevik Revolution, which was financed in part by western industrialists of the United States and England, who also financed Hitler. Mr. Stone is dealing here only with Russia since the 1990s after Gorbachev unsuccessfully attempted to change to a market system, his Perestroika and Glasnost, which did not work and he was ousted. Are you familiar with what happened then? Yeltsin came in as president of Russia, and the United States through Bill Clinton’s administration, the IMF and World Bank urged Russia to take loans and put pressure on Yeltsin to change rapidly to a market system, so that Yeltsin allowed Russia’s assets to be sold off, and the Russian people experienced an economic depression which was very serious. That was in the early 1990s and Yeltsin was ousted by the people in 1996. Putin came in and ousted the wealthy oligarchs who had bought off Russia’s assets, illegally. The changes you must know made Russia a state capitalistic system, partial state and partial private ownership. Yeltsin had started a war in Chechnya when he was losing popularity (always figure a war will distract the people) and Putin then had to deal with the apartment bombings and Chechnya warlords, which was controversial. Russians’ standard of living has increased under Putin’s administration, which accounts for his high approval rating.

    You sound very angry. Are you a descendent of the great Russian composer, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky? His music is very beautiful, very calming, I recommend it. We have a lot of anger here as Americans because our government has gotten so corrupt that it only serves the wealthy and forgets the people, and the US has started wars all over the world, which certainly Russia is not doing now. Do you live in Russia? You did not say.

  24. June 15, 2017 at 9:41 pm

    Some of the articles shown on Internet in reaction to Stone’s interviews with Putin are utterly sickening, so indicative of lockstep, brainwashed press thinking that is almost unbearable to contemplate in the 21st century, that human beings can be so ignorant and vicious! I can only say that they’ll get what’s coming to them through Mama Nature. Man, the dumbing-down is complete, the press is a bunch of fools!

    • Realist
      June 16, 2017 at 4:03 am

      Yes, it makes my head want to explode! You try to counter their propaganda with fact and you are told to read “history.” We truly live in a “1984” society. I was going to say country, but the entire West has been transformed during my 70-year life span. The change most rapidly came on after the turn of the century but Bill Clinton was already a harbinger, a “John the Baptist” of a Brave Neo-con World. I don’t know your age, Jessica, but back in the day American education used to demand a hell of a lot more rigor in fact gathering and analysis before making judgments or coming to conclusions. Now it’s all just parroting of groupthink. Is that out of fear, stupidity, laziness, information overload, too many frivolous distractions, burnout, zombiefication, incessant marketeering, mental entrainment, anomie, alienation, apathy, mass hypnosis, mass psychosis, the perfection of what Scott Adams calls “master persuasion” or the emergence of the ultimate hive mind… What? I think Americans and Europeans have become even more pliable than the “good” Germans were.

  25. Abe
    June 15, 2017 at 9:44 pm

    “What the US secretary of state said on Feb. 9, 1990 in the magnificent St. Catherine’s Hall at the Kremlin is beyond dispute. There would be, in Baker’s words, ‘no extension of NATO’s jurisdiction for forces of NATO one inch to the east,’ provided the Soviets agreed to the NATO membership of a unified Germany. Moscow would think about it, Gorbachev said, but added: ‘any extension of the zone of NATO is unacceptable.’

    “[…] the Soviets would hardly have agreed to take part in the two-plus-four talks if they had known that NATO would later accept Poland, Hungary and other Eastern European countries as members.

    “The negotiations with Gorbachev were already difficult enough, with Western politicians repeatedly insisting that they were not going to derive — in the words of then-US President George H. W. Bush — any ‘unilateral advantage’ from the situation, and that there would be ‘no shift in the balance of power’ between the East and the West, as Genscher put it.”

    NATO’s Eastward Expansion: Did the West Break Its Promise to Moscow?
    By Uwe Klußmann, Matthias Schepp and Klaus Wiegrefe
    http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/nato-s-eastward-expansion-did-the-west-break-its-promise-to-moscow-a-663315.html

  26. June 16, 2017 at 3:50 am

    Always afraid, and always bowing to the ruthless power of our leaders. We are no different than the peasants of Europe in the Middle Ages when it comes to the absolute psychic straightjacket we exist in. They were indoctrinated to believe they were “sinners” and “unworthy” and only through Mother Church could they hope for some “redemption.” While we are indoctrinated to believe we are similarly “unworthy” in comparison to our fabulously wealthy elite overlords who have been “blessed by the invisible hand of the market” god by their good fortune. The five richest people on the planet now have as much wealth as the bottom one-half of the entire population of this earth, and still people in the West refuse to challenge the mythology of this rapacious amoral neo-liberal neocolonial militarist capitalism that is destroying us. Mother church promised those who might stray with eternal suffering in a “hell” after death, while today our current mythologies create a literal hell on earth for much of the human family. As Oliver Stone points out, we are still ruled by fear, manipulated with it and by it, all to keep a tiny elite in power and in the style they’ve grown accustomed to. It is not surprising in the end I suppose, that in a nation in which the majority of the population believes in the existence of the “devil” and of “angels” that such a population might be more easily convinced by propaganda that in fact “the devil” walks among us, currently in the form of President Putin. That elites must create a “new devil” regularly to maintain the population in fear, and themselves in power, is of course a recipe for our collective demise in the nuclear, chemical, biological warfare age. Yet we remain ruled by myths of “us and them.” Although to be sure the rich are always portrayed as “us” no matter how little we have in common with them. And the poor of the world everywhere are portrayed as “them” no matter how similar our circumstances. Oliver has made a great contribution to breaking down such mythic thinking. That the modern U.S. state has brought back “water boarding,” one of the favored torture techniques of the Holy Inquisition I suppose is one of those ironies missed by those who bask in the notion that we are so terribly “enlightened,” and “exceptional” and “virtuous, and of course “without sin.”

    • Realist
      June 16, 2017 at 4:08 am

      Very astute analysis, Gary. True and well spoken.

  27. Abe
    June 16, 2017 at 12:55 pm

    Oliver Stone interview on Fox News with Tucker Carlson (15 June 2017)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=phdGhSSRNu4

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