Missile-gate: U.S. Intel Misses Russia’s Big Advances in Nuclear Parity

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s announcement on Thursday of major technological advances in nuclear weapons delivery systems appears to have caught the U.S. intelligence community unawares, reports Gilbert Doctorow.

By Gilbert Doctorow

President Vladimir Putin’s two-hour long address yesterday to the Federal Assembly, a joint session of both houses of Russia’s bicameral legislature – plus large numbers of Russia’s cultural, business and other elites – constituted his platform for the upcoming presidential election on March 18. This, in lieu of participation in the televised debates on all federal television channels in which other seven candidates are busy these days.

Russian President Vladimir Putin delivers his annual address to the Federal Assembly at the Manezh Central Exhibition Hall in Moscow, Russia, March 1, 2018.

But as is the case with many of Vladimir Putin’s major presentations, the speech yesterday was addressed to a far broader audience than the Russian electorate. Many of the estimated 700 journalists invited to attend were foreign correspondents.  Indeed, one might reasonably argue that the speech was directed abroad, precisely to the United States.

The final third of the address, devoted to defense and presenting for the first time several major new and technically unparalleled offensive nuclear weapons systems, established Russia’s claim to full nuclear parity with the United States, overturning the country’s withdrawal from superpower status dating from the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1992. Some Russian commentators, in a burst of national pride, claimed that the power of the Soviet Union had now been restored and the wrongs of the 1990s were finally undone.

In its own way, this speech was as important, perhaps more important than Putin’s talk to the Munich Security Conference in February 2007 at which he set out in length Russia’s grievances with U.S. global hegemony installed in the 1990s and the  utter disregard for or denial of Russia’s national interests. That speech was a turning point in U.S.-Russian relations which headed us to the deep confrontation of today. Yesterday’s speech suggested not the onset of a new arms race, but its conclusion, with outright Russian victory and U.S. defeat.

Putin’s address was a “shock and awe” event. I leave to others, more competent than I in military technology to comment on the specific capabilities of the various systems rolled out yesterday. Whether short range or unlimited range, whether ground launched or air launched, whether ballistic missiles or cruise missiles, whether flying through the atmosphere or navigating silently and at high speed the very depths of the oceans, these various systems are said to be invincible to any known or prospective air defense such as the United States has invested in heavily since it unilaterally left the ABM Treaty and set out on a course that would upend strategic parity.

Since 2002, U.S. policy has aimed at enabling a first strike knocking out Russian ICBMs and then rendering useless Russia’s residual nuclear forces which could be shot out of the air. Russia’s new highly maneuverable and ultra-high speed (Mach 10 and Mach 20) missiles and underwater nuclear drone render illusory any scenario based on non-devastating response to the US homeland following a US strike on Russia. In passing, the new systems also render useless and turn into sitting duck targets the entire US navy, with its aircraft carrier formations.

U.S. and Western media response to Putin’s address was varied. The Financial Times tried its best at neutral reporting, and midway through its feature article gave a paragraph each to two of Russia’s most authoritative politicians with special expertise in relations with the West: Konstantin Kosachev and Alexei Pushkov, both former chairmen of the Duma’s Committee on Foreign Affairs.

However, their reporters and editorial supervisors were out of their depth, unable to reach a consistent view on what the Kremlin is doing. On the one hand Putin’s statements about Russia’s “unstoppable” nuclear weapons are reduced to “claims,” suggesting a certain skepticism; on the other hand, the consequence is to “fuel concern about a new arms race with the U.S.” They cannot fathom that the race is over.

The Washington Post was fairly quick to post a lengthy article in its online edition yesterday. An unusually large part consisted of quotes from Putin’s speech. The editorial line tells it all in the title assigned: “Putin claims Russia is developing nuclear arms capable of avoiding missile defenses.” I would put the accent on “claims” and “is developing.” The reporter and newspaper management seem not to have gotten the point: that one of these systems is already deployed in the Russia’s Southern Military District and that others are going into serial production.  These systems are not a wish list, they are hard facts.

The New York Times was characteristically slow in posting articles on a development which caught its staff and management totally unprepared.  In the space of a couple of hours, it put up two articles in succession dealing with the defense section of Vladimir Putin’s address. In both, but more particularly in the article co-authored by reporters Neil MacFarquhar and David E. Sanger, the stress is on “bluff.”

It is blithely assumed that Putin was just delivering a campaign speech to rouse “the patriotic passions of Russians” and so consolidate his forthcoming electoral victory. The writers take solace in the notion that “deception lies at the heart of current Russian military doctrine,” so that “questions arose about whether these weapons existed.”

These speculations, especially in the New York Times tell us one thing: that our media willfully ignore the plain facts about Vladimir Putin.  First, that he has always done what he has said.  Second, that he is by nature very cautious and methodical.  The word “carefully” (?????????) is a constant element in his speech vocabulary.   In this context, the notion of “bluff’ in a matter that would put Russian national security at risk and possibly cost tens of millions of Russian lives if the bluff were called – such a notion is utter nonsense.

I would like to believe that the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Washington will not be so giddy or superficial in judging what they heard yesterday from Mr. Putin. If that is so, they will be urgently recommending to their President to enter into very broad negotiations with the Russians over arms control.  And they will be going back to their staffs to completely revise their recommendations with respect to the military hardware and installations which the United States is financing in 2019 and beyond. Our present budget, including the trillion or so being appropriated for upgrading nuclear warheads and producing more low-yield weapons is a waste of taxpayer money.

However, still more importantly, the implications of Vladimir Putin’s address yesterday are that U.S. intelligence has been asleep at the wheel for the past 14 years if not longer. It is a national scandal for the country to lose an arms race it was not even aware was occurring.  Heads should roll, and the process should begin with proper hearings on Capitol Hill. For reasons that will be clear from what follows, among the first witnesses called upon to testify should be former Vice President Dick Cheney and former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld.

In the past such a revelation of a vast security gap with the country’s main geopolitical and military competitor would lead to political recriminations and finger pointing.  What came up yesterday is far bigger than the “missile gap” of the late 1950s that brought Jack Kennedy to the White House in a campaign to restore vigor to American political culture and wake it from the somnolent Eisenhower years with their complacency about security matters and much else.

Moreover, the roll-out yesterday of new Russian weaponry that changes the world power balance was just one in a chain of remarkable Russian achievements over the past four years that caught US leadership entirely by surprise.  The explanation has till now been the alleged unpredictability of Vladimir Putin, even if absolutely nothing he did could not have been foreseen by someone paying close attention.

One prime example was the Russian capture of Crimea in February-March 2014 without a shot being fired or a single fatality in circumstances where the 20,000 Russian troops based in their leased Sevastopol enclave confronted 20,000 Ukrainian forces on the peninsula. Western media spoke of a Russian “invasion” which amounted to nothing more than the Russian troops leaving their barracks. The Russians had used nothing more exotic than psychological warfare, old-fashioned “psy-ops” as it is called in the States executed to perfection by pros, all dating from the time of Von Clausewitz.

Then the Pentagon was caught with its pants down in September 2015 when Putin at the United Nations General Assembly announced the dispatch of Russian warplanes to Syria for a campaign against ISIS and to support Assad that would begin the next day. Why did we suspect nothing?  Was it because Russia was known to be too poor to execute such a challenging mission abroad to precise objectives and timelines?

In the same war theater, the Russians again “surprised” Americans by setting up a joint military intelligence center in Baghdad with Iraq and Iran.  And it further “surprised” NATO by flying bombing missions to the Syrian theater over Iran and Iraqi airspace after being denied flight rights in the Balkans. With thousands of military and diplomatic staff based in Iraq, how is it that the United States knew nothing about the Russian agreements with Iraqi leadership in advance?

My point is that the confusion over how to interpret Putin’s announcement of Russia’s new defense capability is a systemic failure of U.S. intelligence. The next obvious question is why? Where is the CIA? Where are the intel bosses when they are not investigating Trump?

The answer is not to be found in just one or two elements, for sure. Nor is it a failure that developed recently. There is a good measure of blinding complacency about Russia as a “failed state” that has cut across the whole US political establishment since the 1990s when the Russia was flat on its back. One simply could not imagine the Kremlin rising to the challenge of its missions in Crimea, in Syria, in development of the world’s most sophisticated high-tech armaments.

And it is not only blindness to things Russian. It is a fundamental failure to grasp that state power anywhere is not dependent only on GDP and demographic trends but also on grit, patriotic determination and the intelligence of thousands of researchers, engineers and production personnel.

This conceptual poverty infects some our most brilliant Realpolitik political scientists in the academic community who in principle should be open to understanding the world as it is, not the world as we wish it to be. Somehow we seem to have forgotten the lesson of David and Goliath.  Somehow we have forgotten the Israeli numbers of 4 or 5 million standing up militarily to 100 million Arabs. It was unimaginable to us that Russia would be the David to our Goliath.

But there are more objective reasons for the utter failure of US intelligence to grasp the scale and seriousness of the Russian challenge to US global hegemony. Specifically, we must consider the gutting of our Russian intelligence capabilities in the days, months, years following 9/11.

There are those who will say, with reason, that the decline of US intelligence capabilities on Russia began already in the second administration of Ronald Reagan, when the Cold War came to an end and the expertise of Cold Warriors seemed no longer relevant. Surely numbers of Russia experts were allowed to decline by attrition.

And yet, when 9/11 struck, many of those in higher positions in the CIA had come to the Agency as Russia experts. It was the CIA’s lack of skills in the languages and area knowledge of the Middle East that was glaring in the aftermath of the Al-Qaeda attack on the Twin Towers that guided the reshaping of priorities for intelligence. Clearly this deficiency and the necessary re-profiling of expertise could not augur well for the continued employment of holdovers from the Soviet desk.

But a still greater factor in the sharp decline in Russian expertise within US intelligence agencies was the shift from dependence on civil service employees to use of outside service providers, i.e., outsourcing of intelligence work.  This was totally in line with the preferences of the U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney, who introduced outsourcing in a generalized way to deal with the new challenges of the War On Terror.

The same phenomenon affected the U.S. military, especially beginning in 2003 following the invasion of Iraq. Operational security tasks of the U.S. military were outsourced to companies providing mercenaries like Blackwater.  And normal procurement arrangements for materiel were short-circuited by the Vice President for the sake of quick satisfaction of urgent field requirements: hence the procurement of non-traditional but much needed fleets of armored troop transport and the like.

Several articles in Consortium News and elsewhere in recent months have called attention to the phenomenon of intel outsourcing. However, what was happening, why and to what effect was already clearly known a decade ago and promised nothing good.

In a sense, the commonality of all these changes in supply of intelligence, equipment and military force has been a quick-fix mentality and direct political intervention into processes that had been insulated in the civil service with its bureaucratic procedures. Political intervention means ultimately politicizing methods and outcomes. Outsourced intelligence is more likely to meet the demands of the paymaster than to have some intellectual integrity and broad perspective of its own.

To better understand the phenomenon, I refer the reader to an outstanding and well documented article dating from March 2007 that was published by the European Strategic Intelligence Security Center (ESISC) entitled “Outsourcing Intelligence: The Example of the United States.”

The author, ESISC Research Associate Raphael Ramos, tells us that at the time 70% of the budget of the American intelligence community was spent via contracts with private companies. At the time he wrote, outsourcing was said to be greatest among the agencies reporting to the Defense Department. The CIA was then said to have one-third of its staff coming from private companies.

Besides the changing priorities for foreign intelligence resulting from the end of the Cold War and the onset of the War on Terror, another factor in the changing structure of US intelligence was technologically driven. This relates to the modern communications technologies, with many start-ups appearing in the specialized fields of Signals Intelligence and Imagery Intelligence. The NSA availed itself of these new service providers to become a pioneer in outsourcing intelligence.

Other Pentagon agencies which followed the same course were the National Reconnaissance Office, responsible for space based systems of intelligence and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, charged with producing geographic intelligence from satellites.  Add to that the changing intel practices coming from the development of the internet, which prioritized open source intelligence. OSINT could flourish in the private sector because it does not require special security clearances. This soon accounted for between 35% and 90% of intelligence procurement.

As noted above, outsourcing enabled the intelligence community to modernize, gain skills quickly and try to meet urgent new needs. However, judging by the results of intelligence with respect to Putin’s Russia it seems that the outsourcing model has not delivered the goods.  The country has been flying blind while taking outlandish and unsupportable positions to bully the world as if we enjoyed full spectrum dominance and Russia did not exist.

Gilbert Doctorow, an independent political analyst based in Brussels, is serving as an international observer to the March 18 presidential election in Russia. His latest book, Does the United States Have a Future? was published in October 2017. Both paperback and e-book versions are available for purchase on www.amazon.com and all affiliated Amazon websites worldwide.


146 comments for “Missile-gate: U.S. Intel Misses Russia’s Big Advances in Nuclear Parity

  1. mike k
    March 2, 2018 at 5:39 pm

    I must confess to breathing a deep sigh of relief on reading Putin’s speech. It may not cause the concerned scientists to immediately give us another minute or two of grace time on their famous doomsday clock, but I felt like my own inner annihilation clock paused, and considered moving back a couple of notches. Putin has delivered a very timely message to the first strike enthusiasts. Let’s hope they have enough wits left to hear him.

    • jose
      March 2, 2018 at 6:20 pm

      If US intelligence missed Russia’s big advances in nuclear parity, I wonder what else the former might have missed. In any case Mike, I concur with the timing of this monumental address. I think that Mr. Putin wanted to send a message directly to those US policy makers. ” This is not the same Russia of the 1990’s that had a US puppet installed {Boris Yeltsin} as president that spent most of his tenure in office drunk. Putin’s speech reminds me of ancient Greek religion, Nemesis, the goddess who enacted retribution against those who succumb to hubris arrogance before the gods. Well done Mike.

    • orwell
      March 2, 2018 at 9:26 pm

      What a strange article by this Doctorow. It seems as though he’s written this for the Council on Foreign Relations or for the
      various other entities of the Deep State. He leaves the impression
      that he is all for the Concept of Full Spectrum Dominance by
      the USA and its “outlandish and unsupportable positions
      to bully the world”. He just believes the USA has dropped the ball
      in their “intelligence” capabilities, and wishes that they had not
      been so incompetent. But if the USA really DID have Full Spectrum
      Dominance, all would be hunky-dory wonderful for the outraged
      Mr. Doctorow !!! And so it goes……………

      • Zachary Smith
        March 2, 2018 at 10:08 pm

        sir, I suggest you re-read the essay. From your remarks I must conclude you didn’t understand it on the first pass.

        I’m against the US Empire too, but I’ve no desire to see my country become dog-meat for the rest of the world solely to enable more giga-bucks to be shoveled to Privatized Intelligence.

        Heads need to roll over this obvious failure. During WW2 the US entered the war with 95% useless torpedoes. This enabled the Japanese to easily consolidate their expansion, and caused tens of thousands of US military deaths to root them out.
        Who else paid for this failure?
        NOBODY! The perpetrators got off scot-free – when they weren’t actually promoted.

        • Fred
          March 4, 2018 at 1:43 am

          Responsibility and being held to account isn’t a fave rave in the Fed Gov.

      • rosemerry
        March 3, 2018 at 3:43 pm

        That interpretation shows you know neither Gilbert Doctorow nor consortiumnews.

        • Paranam Kid
          March 5, 2018 at 9:47 am

          That is the most succinct & accurate way of putting it.

        • Dragon
          March 8, 2018 at 10:24 am

          yep, but that’s part of what Gilbert described as a ‘quick fix’ culture, and low attention span I’d add

      • March 4, 2018 at 11:05 am

        somewhat bizarre that the author thinks our intelligence on Soviet Russia during the Reagan years began to degrade,lol. It appears that it was really really bad back then. One assumes that Russia being a more open society where intelligence assets could more easily hide their CIA sourced salary would only improve our ability to know what they are up to. I don’t think I can buy the idea that Putin has these devices, they work and we didn’t know it without at least a little skepticism. Also..could Trumpkin’s big military parade plans be any sort of pre planned response to put in’s announcement? I mean Trumpkin is kind of an reactionary idiot…

  2. March 2, 2018 at 5:46 pm

    The intelligence deep state tells the people only what it wants them to hear, and the corporate media colludes to ensure it doesn’t happen. That worked before all the alternative public ways of obtaining information were available. What I see is a cabal that depended on outdated propaganda methods, and now must scuttle around trying to explain why we’re only now learning about this.

    I also anticipate an even more heavy-handed crackdown on those alternative sources of information, because keeping the people ignorant is vital to maintaining the current power structure. Things fall apart…

    • March 2, 2018 at 5:56 pm

      To the extent that there is such a thing as ‘the deep state’, it’s mostly various agencies jockeying for bigger slices of the budget pie and trying to one-up each other, united only in the goal of maintaining justification for their existences since the end of the first Cold War. Now, as then, there is going to be a lot of pressure from Congress and the White House for the agencies to explain what they’ve been doing with all those trillions of tax dollars if Russia and China can develop effective (and superior) military technology capable of neutering the effectiveness of our own.

    • mike k
      March 2, 2018 at 6:08 pm

      When I searched google for the full text of Putin’s speech, it was not to be found. I had to go to the Saker’s blog to get the link. I guess those controlling google didn’t like the speech……..

      • March 2, 2018 at 6:53 pm

        You can always find English version transcripts of all of Putin’s speeches and interviews on the Kremlin’s English language website. The transcript for this speech is here:


        • Zachary Smith
          March 2, 2018 at 9:44 pm

          I knew the materials relevant to Mr. Doctorow’s essay were in the last third of Putin’s speech, but I couldn’t resist skimming the first 2/3 of his remarks. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen anything in this country like it. I’d invite people to examine the 2016 platforms by the Democrats and Republicans after reading Putin’s speech. Here is the start of the Republican one:

          We believe in American exceptionalism. We believe the United States of America is unlike any other nation on earth. We believe America is exceptional because of our historic role — first as refuge, then as defender, and now as exemplar of liberty for the world to see. We affirm — as did the Declaration of Independence: that all are created equal, endowed by their Creator with inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We believe in the Constitution as our founding document.

          Silly boilerplate bafflegab. There is lots more about the “unborn”, the Second Amendment, and the need to cut taxes. Not that the Democratic one was any better.

          There was nothing at all in the silly “platforms” to compare with this:

          In the period from 2018 to 2020, we must ensure that each small town with a population of 100 to 2,000 people has a paramedic station and an outpatient clinic. For villages with less than 100 people – we also have villages as small as that – we will organise mobile medical units, all-terrain vehicles with all the necessary diagnostic equipment.

          Damned socialized medicine! Big Hospital profits are FAR more important than “life expectancy”.

        • March 6, 2018 at 8:30 pm


      • Skip Scott
        March 3, 2018 at 7:49 am

        mike k-

        Google is now next to useless as a search engine for this type of information. They have become part of the problem and are being absorbed into the rest of the MSM propaganda machine. The last thing they want is for people to read Putin’s speeches and interviews and judge the man for themselves. Soon it won’t just be rigging the search engines, it will come down to blocking sites like this one as well.

      • Paranam Kid
        March 5, 2018 at 9:50 am

        In view of Google’s policy to down-level anything on Russia, you should try to search on Yandex – https://www.yandex.com/

    • Sam F
      March 2, 2018 at 8:43 pm

      No doubt the failure of outsourced intelligence is in part due to the lack of any measure of performance, as the end result is mere “confidence” in what the boss says. No need to gather information or make correct analyses

    • Bianca
      March 3, 2018 at 10:48 pm

      I am afraid I agree. The arrogance created an actual vulnerability, and the question is — are there any adults left in the government. Too many of them are short termers, chasing any low hanging political money tree fruit. And accustomed to narratives — no thinking required. The immaturity, feigned or real, is depressing.

    • RTC
      March 5, 2018 at 1:37 am

      Well said. The intelligence networks, both government and private aren’t in conflict, or not on the big game issues. This Russian situation isn’t born from “complacency”. It’s the next stage in the greater Israel super structure & the continued errosion of all aspects of US power and influence. The forces inside the US are just as bad as the influences outside the US.
      It brings new meaning to the concept of planned obsolescence….

  3. March 2, 2018 at 5:52 pm

    Crimea was not captured. Its people voted to rejoin Russia after the Ukrianian government had been overthrown with support from the U.S. and replaced with neo-Nazis who made it clear that Crimeans would face a ton of pogroms designed to ethnically cleanse the region.

    • March 6, 2018 at 8:33 pm

      Agreed. Progressives, namely real ones who pay attention, know this!

    • Dragon
      March 8, 2018 at 10:56 am

      people voted that to happen yes and I’m sure Gilbert is aware of all that,
      but the fact that we only remember or know of the peaceful voting part (looking back at it now)
      is a testament to a great military op that went behind the scenes, voting and will of the people was and never is enough.

    • Bill jones
      March 10, 2018 at 5:35 pm


  4. Babeouf
    March 2, 2018 at 6:02 pm

    Yes excellent but it won’t do any good. Russia has a military/industrial complex The USA has an industrial/military complex. In the US system the profit motive determines everything both weapons produced and their quantities. In Russia .owing to all their past loses due to invasions, the military has the last word. So while the first nuclear bomb was American(the fission bomb) the first ‘super bomb’ was Russian and the worlds first artificial satellite and the first man in space was Russian. THe Russian ‘Sin’ is its refusal to take instructions from US Presidents. In this sense it is Russia that represents the ‘Wave of the future’ on planet earth.

    • Bianca
      March 3, 2018 at 10:53 pm

      And in line with your thinking, Russia has State run corporations, with taxpayer being the beneficiary, here, we have corporate run State, with taxpayer being the milking cow.

      • March 6, 2018 at 8:38 pm

        Is that what you took away from Putin’s address? I heard a neoliberal speaking. He wants 1. (as in Canada, with disastrous results) experimentally low inflation (benefitting investors at the expense of the wider society), 2. the private drug companies to step up and help Russians to be healthier (!), 3. businesses to help out with infrastructure spending, if I recall (P3s?, which are privatization by stealth), 4. a larger GDP (when, as progressives know, ‘how’ you get that is the issue and Putin is gung ho not just for nukes but for selling nuclear plants, and weapons, to ‘anyone’ who wants to buy them!). At least he’s a nationalist, in a good sense. I’d rather have him than my prime minister, Mr Sunny Ways. But he isn’t a saint, nor a genuine ‘green’ president, let alone socialist.

  5. mark
    March 2, 2018 at 6:06 pm

    The US “Intelligence” Empire is a sprawling octopus of 17 agencies, 850,000 employees, and $100 billion budget.

    It is more interested in undermining a democratically elected president, scheming and playing its dirty internal political games than doing the job it is paid for. Corrupt and politicised intelligence organisations are worse than a mere complete waste of money, worse than useless, they are so harmful that it would be better if they did not exist at all.

    This is just the latest in a long line of failures, 9/11 and the collapse of the USSR being the most glaring examples.

    Much the same could be said of the gargantuan $1,136 billion military budget (2019 real figure.)

  6. David G
    March 2, 2018 at 6:20 pm

    Gilbert Doctorow suggests as partial explanation for U.S. intelligence being caught flat-footed on Putin’s announcement that their Russia expertise has diminished since the Soviet era, and especially since 2001.

    But that would imply some corresponding increase in capabilities in other areas. Yet even in the new century’s designated hot spots, the U.S. has a prodigious record of being constantly surprised, notwithstanding the unfathomable scale and funding of its (so-called) intelligence operation. To wit:

    Tom Engelhardt wrote (Oct. 15, 2015):
    “You get the point. Whatever the efforts of that expansive corps of intelligence analysts (and the vast intelligence edifice behind it), when anything happens in the Greater Middle East, you can essentially assume that the official American reaction, military and political, will be ‘surprise’ and that policymakers will be left ‘scrambling’ in a quagmire of ignorance to rescue American policy from the unexpected. In other words, somehow, with what passes for the best, or at least most extensive and expensive intelligence operation on the planet, with all those satellites and drones and surveillance sweeps and sources, with crowds of analysts, hordes of private contractors, and tens of billions of dollars, with, in short, ‘intelligence’ galore, American officials in the area of their wars are evidently going to continue to find themselves eternally caught ‘off guard’.”

    • March 4, 2018 at 11:13 am

      since these people have taken the exploitation of crisis (planned or otherwise) as their MO for getting things done, one has to wonder if being “caught off guard” is a tactic.

      • Dragon
        March 8, 2018 at 11:06 am

        exactly, I think that people are not giving US (deep state or whatever) credit where credit is due. They’re doing terrific job in creating the chaos (as a main goal), so me thinks they’re not that ignorant after all. I’m sure Russians are not underestimating them.

  7. David G
    March 2, 2018 at 6:29 pm

    “What came up yesterday is far bigger than the ‘missile gap’ of the late 1950s …”

    Of course it is: this exists, unlike the “missile gap”, which never did.

    • Sam F
      March 2, 2018 at 8:55 pm

      If the US did know that new missile technology means that a viable defense is not built by surrounding other superpowers with missiles, then the US intended such missiles as an offensive threat, as they were interpreted by the unthreatening Russia and China. That threat was intended to force them into an arms race, for the US warmongering tyrants must provoke incidents to pose with the flag as fake patriots to demand power, and to accuse their moral superiors of disloyalty. The good news is that the race resulted in a superior deterrent rather than provocative incidents.

      • Zachary Smith
        March 2, 2018 at 10:18 pm

        If the US did know that new missile technology means that a viable defense is not built by surrounding other superpowers with missiles, then the US intended such missiles as an offensive threat, as they were interpreted by the unthreatening Russia and China.

        Do you recall the fairly recent essay here titled “Dreams of ‘Winning’ Nuclear War on Russia”? My conclusion is that the US planned to arrange a situation where their new “super fuse” could decimate Russian weapons, then mop up any survivors with the missile defense net being built around that nation. Putin spoke of the latter in his speech:

        Despite our numerous protests and pleas, the American machine has been set into motion, the conveyer belt is moving forward. There are new missile defence systems installed in Alaska and California; as a result of NATO’s expansion to the east, two new missile defence areas were created in Western Europe: one has already been created in Romania, while the deployment of the system in Poland is now almost complete. Their range will keep increasing; new launching areas are to be created in Japan and South Korea. The US global missile defence system also includes five cruisers and 30 destroyers, which, as far as we know, have been deployed to regions in close proximity to Russia’s borders. I am not exaggerating in the least; and this work proceeds apace.

        The US was preparing to be able to destroy Russia without being hurt by any significant retaliation. That was obvious to anybody who bothered looking, but being the most interested parties, the Russians took steps to make the scheme impossible. So far as I can tell, they’ve done precisely that.

        • Sam F
          March 2, 2018 at 10:46 pm

          Yes, I presumed also that the intent was offensive. If US intel agencies knew that ABM “defenses” would be ineffective against new delivery systems, then we have proof of US nuclear aggression.

          • March 4, 2018 at 11:17 am

            I believe that if one looks closely at what is known about our current missile defense systems,one would have a hard time concluding they are or have ever been effective.

      • Bianca
        March 4, 2018 at 12:47 am

        Or, as it turned out, Russia — by prioritizing defence — caught US off guard. US missile defense is primarily a system designed to back up first strike. So, the system itself — as an instrument of defence — is not a viable defence strategy, nor adequate defence technology.
        This in fact gives Russia an offensive edge. However, in rereading the new technologies it seems that they are dealing with some threats we are not aware off. This may mean that some new weapons plans are not so secret, and Russia has adressed them. All in all — when North Korea fired of a missile over Japan to land in Pacific — there was no anti-missile response from Japan. Then, another missile was fired again. Again no response. The response — missiles were no threat — came after the fact, invalidating the idea that North Korea is such an imminent and huge threat. South Korea must have decided at some point to take the issue of its defence into its own hands. And not count on missile defence to defend it.

    • March 6, 2018 at 8:40 pm

      Thank you!

  8. Annie
    March 2, 2018 at 6:30 pm

    When I read the article on Putin’s speech I didn’t think he was hyping Russia’s military capabilities to secure himself a win, since he faces little challenge in that regard. To be honest I only hope that Russia has the nuclear capability he professes, and I believe it does, because I live in no fear that Russia will initiate a nuclear war, but I fear that we will. Our hubris never fails to astound me, especially when one considers our numerous wars and many failures but doesn’t hinder our desire to dominate the world.

    • mike k
      March 2, 2018 at 6:44 pm

      Those absorbed in obsessive addictions don’t consider realities adverse to their desires. The power addicts that seek to rule our world will do anything to get what they feel they must have. Reasoning with them or citing moral considerations will not influence them in the slightest. They are deadly focused on the object of their addiction: Ultimate Power!

      • Annie
        March 2, 2018 at 8:31 pm

        An addiction to power, and I agree and that’s why my country scares me. A few years ago I watched the mini series on The Men Who Built America, and it covered the lives of Vanderbilt,  Rockefeller,  Carnegie,  Morgan,  Edison and Henry Ford. Although the intended focus of this mini series was to show how their industrial empires modernized our present day society, it was obvious that these men were addicted to power, more then the wealth they accrued, and little did they care about the abuses they inflicted on the mostly immigrant population they used to get it. No different then the carnage we inflict on the world to further our domination of it. Reminds me of an abusive parent, who too often poses as victim.

        • tina
          March 2, 2018 at 10:44 pm

          Annie, I do not know how old you are, nor do I care to know, History. 1979 Iran uprising , get rid of the shah, and install Khomeini, from Paris. Munich 1980. Reagan 1980. 1953 overthrow of Mossadegh, a person who was elected. Kermit Roosevelt, along with the Dulles brothers brought this situation about, because they believed ” We cannot allow Soviet communism” to succeed. 2018,, take a history lesson. How , Annie, would you feel if one day your country is emasculated, stripped of territories? Do you really think your leader would take that lying down? Every country has its pride, the USA is no different.

          • Annie
            March 3, 2018 at 1:08 am

            Tina, I do not need a history lesson from you, since I am very familiar with all that you referenced, and have been for a long time, but fail to see your point in regard to what I said, which was a response to mike k’s comments, that had to do with our addiction to power.

        • mike k
          March 2, 2018 at 10:53 pm

          Good insight Annie. We live in an abusive society, and all the psychological mechanisms of that deadly disease are in full display all around us, for those with eyes to see. Derrick Jensen has a lot of good insights about this pervasive syndrome. It is tied to patriarchy and authoritarianism. For example, ask any recovering Catholic how a religion supposedly based on love can be transformed into a tool for abuse, and tricking it’s victims into blaming themselves for all that is done to them.

          • Annie
            March 3, 2018 at 1:43 am

            mike k, I’m not really familiar with the Catholic church since I was raised as a Unitarian. Both parents were raised in the Catholic faith. My father, a very verbally abusive man, would go to church every Sunday, and I would think how hypocritical. My mother renounced her Catholicism. However I do know from personal experience that abusers will always blame their victims. I’ve heard the name Derrick Jensen in reference to environmentalism, but nothing more about his political positions, but it may be quite interesting to here what he has to say. Thanks for the reference.

        • March 3, 2018 at 8:19 pm

          Yeah, you are totally right about those men and addition to power.

          I remember that series. I, myself, refused to watch it because the entire premise was a lie, as I’m sure you also know.

          Those oligarchs weren’t the men who built America. They were the ones who got rich off oppressing the workers who built America.

        • March 6, 2018 at 8:42 pm

          I no longer watch Democracy Now, but when I did, there was a good show about Jeff Bezos’s purchase of the money-losing Washington Post. The guest (forget who) noted that what Jeff wanted was to be a player. Jeff wants to be powerful and to hobnob with the powerful.

    • Dave P.
      March 2, 2018 at 10:21 pm

      Well said Annie.

      • Annie
        March 3, 2018 at 1:43 am

        Thanks Dave.

    • Bill jones
      March 10, 2018 at 6:06 pm

      My great hope for Trump is that he roots out the neocon filth who infect the state. My hope lessens daily.

  9. Jeff
    March 2, 2018 at 6:40 pm

    There are, I think, several things that need to be stressed.
    1. As Putin pointed out, this is all a direct result of Shrub’s withdrawal from the ABM treaty. They were not going to leave the US with a first strike capability.
    2. The Media (that’s you guys) need to connect dots for your readers (even more than this article does) because the American public has the historical memory of a mayfly and US government disinformation is already in high gear. I heard an NPR piece this AM that was talking about Russian and US militaries bumping up against each other in Syria with the undertones that Russian involvement there is illegitimate. They never mentioned that Russia is operating in Syria at the behest of the legally elected government while the US is operating in Syria in violation of international law and the UN charter.
    3. While NATO is frothing at the mouth about Putin’s speech, people need to be reminded that Russia has specifically abjured the use of nukes unless attacked by nukes and/or the existence of the Russian Federation is threatened. Not only has the US not said that they wouldn’t be the first to use nukes, we’ve said we might use them in response to a cyber attack.
    4. According to the International Institute of Strategic studies, in 2017 the US spent $602B on “defense” and Russia spent $61B.

    Go figure.

    • David G
      March 2, 2018 at 7:17 pm

      All excellent points, Jeff.

      Re (1): The U.S. dumping the ABM was barely news in this country even when Bush did it. It was never even noted enough to require the “memory hole” treatment. It’s almost poignant to behold U.S. policy/journalism elites being surprised the Russians actually remember it, let alone did anything about it.

      Re (3): The big picture is that the new Russian weapons are meant to restore the deterrent that prevailed before the ABM withdrawal, not to go tit for tat with all the recent U.S./NATO scattershot aggressions, both operational and verbal.

      Re (4): I think back a year or so to the derisive media coverage of the aircraft carrier Kuznetzov’s deployment to Syria, along the lines of its being a wheezing old rust bucket. While the U.S. spends vast sums on 10 nuclear carrier groups of dubious use and survivability in combat, Russia was getting use out of what it had and directing its resources toward its core defense priorities.

      • Jeff
        March 2, 2018 at 9:02 pm

        Agreed. There is one ancillary point. As a general rule, defense is cheaper than offense.

        • Sam F
          March 3, 2018 at 6:20 am

          True that when offense includes defense, it is necessarily more expensive. But where a small nation must quickly halt an invader, defense is costly, for example, France spent heavily on the Maginot Line border fortification after WWI, which in WWII German tanks simply went around via Belgium. Insurgency also has historically been a lower-technology higher-casualty operation compared with counter-insurgency. It appears that defense against nuclear attack may also be more complex and costly than the attack, although strategic balance makes the comparison less useful.

          Because destruction is easier than construction, and crime is easier than protection against crime, I have often found the defender in non-military matters to be far more burdened than the offender.

          • Jeff
            March 3, 2018 at 4:18 pm

            Well, (a) France doesn’t qualify as a small country esp. prior to WWII and (b) the Maginot line is a bad example because it’s really an example of the military being ready to fight the last war, not an example of a failed defense technology. I would also disagree that defending against a nuke attack is more complex and costly. A defense against a nuke attack essentially involves a radar and a missile. The requirements for these are exacting and non-trivial but it’s still just a radar and a missile. Making the nuclear warhead on the other hand, is very expensive and complex. You have to refine the ore and extract the appropriate isotope. For Uranium that is U235 which is present in less than 1% of all naturally occurring Uranium. This is done with all those aluminum tubes that Iran (and the US and …) that are centrifuges that separate U235 from U238 by virtue of U238’s higher weight of 3 neutrons per atom. Then you need to enrich it which requires that you build a nuclear reactor which is neither simple nor cheap. Then you need to design the warhead. This essentially involves designing two or more sub-critical masses of the fissile material (U235 or Pu239) that you slam together under the aegis of an explosion to produce the necessary density to create a critical mass which then goes boom (after you put it on a missile).

            Success may be a bit elusive on the defense side because you’re trying to hit something that is moving very fast and isn’t necessarily following a nice smooth trajectory but I think that offense has it hands down for expense and complexity.

          • Bianca
            March 4, 2018 at 1:21 am

            A really interesting take. What intrigues me is the mindset — the mindset of power and domination is seeking the model of dominance, which is out of the need for respectability — structured and portrayed as deffence. This mindset has no fear, just the opposite, knows that others are threatened. The mindlset of defence is based on an urgency and justified fear. It is seeking ways to overcome, neutralize, or avoid threats. In focusing on neutralizing and countering actual threats — it in fact has a high chance to develop capabilities of efective offence. And this is especially likely to happen if the opponent is self-assured and has no fear.

          • Sam F
            March 4, 2018 at 9:27 am

            Interesting issue, Jeff; the costs of defense v. offense. Defense is not always more costly or difficult than offense, but that is likely. I’ll change “small countries” to “nearby countries” where in the case of France, a costly defensive perimeter was readily circumvented by developing armored divisions. Size also determines the time and opportunities to reconfigure defenses when a defense fails. Defense technology must oppose known offense technology so it is often “fighting the last war.” Also consider that US ABMs had to use nuclear warheads because the targets arrive rapidly surrounded by lots of decoys, so the targeting isn’t accurate enough.

            But unnecessary offense expenditures like the US MIC budget far exceed the cost of adequate defense, which is the major point. These expenses pursue unconstitutional wars under illegal AUMFs and must be halted. If 80% of the US military were re-purposed to building the roads, schools, and hospitals of the developing nations, we would restore true security as well as move toward the only true international purpose of great powers, which is humanitarian.

            I agree, Bianca, that the weakness of the offender is often carelessness, while the defender must be clever and seek weaknesses in “countering actual threats.”

    • Zachary Smith
      March 2, 2018 at 10:22 pm

      The Media (that’s you guys) need to connect dots for your readers (even more than this article does) because the American public has the historical memory of a mayfly and US government disinformation is already in high gear.

      As the author says, the Corporate Media hasn’t got their Talking Points together yet. I’ve seen nothing but incoherence so far from them.

      BTW, one reason for the spending difference is that Russia has carefully avoided building F-35 type systems. I’m sure they have had failures, but I’ve heard of none in the hundred-billion to trillion dollar ranges.

    • March 4, 2018 at 11:23 am

      it occurs to me that it would not be impossible for Russia to bankrupt the United States by starting an arms race….which would be so ironic as to pass into the realm of hilarious

    • March 6, 2018 at 8:44 pm

      Exactly! I have a bookmark to a site called NPR watch. I never visit. Perhaps I should. But then again, I never watch NPR. But I hear about its pathetic performance often enough!

  10. David G
    March 2, 2018 at 6:42 pm

    One surprise for me yesterday was learning that Russia has taken U.S. missile defense technology seriously enough to develop all these new systems to circumvent it. Don’t the Russians realize the whole thing has been primarily a vast money suck to enrich the MIC, lacking any convincing demonstration of the ability to actually shoot down missiles in a real conflict?

    Still, I suppose if the U.S. is going to continue to pour tens of billions of dollars into missile defense, decade after decade, Russia can’t completely exclude the possibility that eventually something might work (or at least convince U.S. decision-makers sufficiently to embolden them toward doing something rash).

    • Jeff
      March 2, 2018 at 8:59 pm

      Indeed. The only problem from Russia’s perspective is that various Middle Eastern have intercepted, not ICBMs, but shorter range, slower missiles. I doubt they want to take chances with the world’s most aggressive country.

    • Zachary Smith
      March 2, 2018 at 10:27 pm

      You seem to be unaware there are several types of missile defense. Some of the US types are quite successful, and those ringing Russia were capable of destroying small forces of surviving ICBMs.

      I’ll agree that Profit for Big Weapons was a significant force behind the ABM work. THEY don’t care whether it works or not.

      • David G
        March 3, 2018 at 12:00 am

        I think I seem well aware of the fact that tests of ICBM intercepts have a long history of very mixed success under artificially forgiving conditions, and that the alleged battlefield success of theater systems like Patriot and Iron Dome has been repeatedly, authoritatively criticized by Theodore Postol of MIT.

        Anyway, you seem not to have noticed that in my original comment I acknowledged that the Russians probably have good reasons for developing these novel systems.

  11. mike k
    March 2, 2018 at 6:53 pm

    There is no proven way to peace, other than open communication and negotiated cooperation. War and violence will never yield peace, but only more of the same. Putin and Kim Jong Un continue to offer negotiation, the US continues to talk only of war.

    • Theo
      March 3, 2018 at 6:32 am

      Well said Mike.It’s just that simple.

    • rosemerry
      March 3, 2018 at 3:58 pm

      It seems to be unAmerican to have talks, negotiations, particularly to try to understand why another country might feel threatened by US actions.

  12. phelanm
    March 2, 2018 at 7:07 pm

    made it through the voting-on-a-public-referendum-as-psyops part, but bailed out with the plug for zionism.. is so-called-israel more than a u.s. colonly? “..War Reserve Stockpile Ammunition-Israel ..WRSA-I ..Israel can request to access ..need to be approved by the US congress ..ammunition, smart bombs, missiles, military vehicles and a military hospital with 500 beds. These supplies are situated in six different locations throughout the country..”: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_reserve_stock

    • Zachary Smith
      March 2, 2018 at 10:31 pm

      Somehow we have forgotten the Israeli numbers of 4 or 5 million standing up militarily to 100 million Arabs. It was unimaginable to us that Russia would be the David to our Goliath.</blockquote

      I cringed at that myself, but it’s more of a “metaphor” than anything else. An author has to explain his thesis in terms most readers will understand. “Poor Little Israel” never was in any real danger even in the earliest days. Unless you define “danger” as failure of the First Land Grab.

  13. Rob Roy
    March 2, 2018 at 7:20 pm

    I was told my comment was posted. Where is it?

    I will try again.

  14. elmerfudzie
    March 2, 2018 at 8:24 pm

    Putins’ speech indirectly revealed a major flaw that Neocon Globalists or NG’s repeatedly fail to comprehend about various cultures, political persuasions, unique belief systems, throughout the world. The only comparative example I can give to explain this NG philosophic blind spot is found in a Christian theological expression, syncretism. Where, a misguided claim takes hold in the consciousness of some very powerful people: that global unity can be achieved by ignoring differences in faiths on the assumption that ALL CREEDS are essentially one in the same (or can be made so). This new unveiling of advanced military technology, hardware and posture also indirectly suggests that our Pentagon top brass knew all along that Russia would eventually surpass Western Occident technologies and thus, overwhelming deployment numbers would be required (encirclement) as a counter to higher achievement and notably, on a much smaller budget ! hummmm. These observations seem to be fair hypotheses. Broadly speaking, all the scientific disciplines are presently breaking new ground on a logarithmic rather than the more familiar, linear time scale. Further, CONSORTIUMNEWS readers, was it not the Russians who were first in outer space?…

    In a previous commentary, which (here) I redacted from the original: the Russian’s are not coming but the NG’s keep insisting that they are. At the bottom of this whole dynamic are, once again, the western Occident Banksters; IMF, Federal Reserve, World bank and the “too big to fail” fiat currency system continues to-FAIL. This is in sharp contrast to the Central Bank of Russia, without our inherent, complex, market instabilities. Instabilities, that our side of the paper currency system clearly reveal to one and all. In simplest terms, daily bank closures, hidden inflation, speculative bubbles, fudged inflation statistics and so on…All major wars initially begin with economic instability, followed by financial collapse, domestic unrest and ending in full scale (declared) war usually with some other major sovereign power in order to extricate a country from an economic failure(s). This is the stuff of history and the Russians are well aware of it. They realize that once the USA, City of London speculators, federal reserve systems of the western world, exhaust every conceivable (and inconceivable) way to roll over the sovereign and personal debts of their nations, GLOBAL WAR MUST BEGIN.

    • Dave P.
      March 2, 2018 at 10:28 pm


      Your last sentence rings very true. The whole scenario is on that tranjectory.

      • Fred
        March 4, 2018 at 2:18 am

        Before that will come more bail outs. Then the bail ins. It won’t be pretty.

  15. March 2, 2018 at 9:15 pm

    “I would like to believe that the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Washington will not be so giddy or superficial in judging what they heard yesterday from Mr. Putin. If that is so, they will be urgently recommending to their President to enter into very broad negotiations with the Russians over arms control”…Of course, I too would like to believe this. One thing is clear. Russia has become a much more efficient land under Putin and this is evident in other areas i.e medical, agricultural and industrial. The U.S. is no longer at an advantage as it was when Reagan bullied Gorbachev into an economic collapse when Russia couldn’t afford an arms race. The greed of the MIC has now come back to bite it in the ass. The bloated military budget cannot be expanded without severe economic consequences and as G. Doctorow and others here pointed out the military budget has always been political pork ignoring the strategic interests of the country.

    • Gregory Herr
      March 2, 2018 at 9:57 pm

      My how tables turn. The Soviets go belly up and Putin has lessons learned. Now uncle sam can’t pay the bills and gets caught boondoggling around for (private) profit rather than “purpose”. Russia can be proud that “the intelligence of thousands of researchers, engineers and production personnel” was efficiently parlayed into real “defense”.
      Now it’s time for uncle sam to learn a lesson or two. We can’t overwhelm the world and war will overwhelm everybody. So let’s give up the war business and try working on some good faith win-win partnerships. Right Donald?

      • March 2, 2018 at 10:33 pm

        ” So let’s give up the war business and try working on some good faith win-win partnerships.”…ahh Gregory .would that it were so!

  16. Dave P.
    March 2, 2018 at 10:33 pm

    Gregory Herr,

    “Now it’s time for uncle Sam to learn a lesson or two. We can’t overwhelm the world and war will overwhelm everybody. So let’s give up the war business and try working on some good faith win-win partnerships. Right Donald?”

    They have been doing it for such a long time – this “American Exceptionalism” at work; I don’t think they will ever learn to be for World peace. It is not in American genes. One can tell from the write up in Newspapers, and statements of the Ruling Establishment.

    • mike k
      March 2, 2018 at 11:00 pm

      The power addicts have only one aim: ABSOLUTE TOTAL POWER OVER EVERYTHING!

      • Bill jones
        March 10, 2018 at 6:30 pm

        It is called the Mackinder Doctrin. After Halford.

  17. geeyp
    March 2, 2018 at 10:56 pm

    I hoped it would happen that G. Doctorow would author this report. He is more informed on Russia than any other western writer around. I only disagree with the notion of “Al-Qaeda attack on the Twin Towers”. Did you see the front page of the NYT today? I am referring to the print version. It had a picture that looked like a frame from the movie “1984”. It was stunning to see as it was designed for a chilling effect. President Vladimir Putin’s face/head projected very large in the middle of participants at the gathering. The NYT is full speed ahead with its evil war footing. When people finally vote out Adam Schiff, he can get hired as a NYT spokeshole. He would fit right in with the propaganda machine. Perhaps his agent can get him a percentage.

    • mike k
      March 2, 2018 at 11:03 pm

      Adam Shiff is so disgusting I cannot look at him on TV. UGH!!

      • Gregory Herr
        March 2, 2018 at 11:20 pm

        If you can overcome your disgust for two minutes mike–this is priceless:


      • geeyp
        March 2, 2018 at 11:58 pm

        If Schiff is shown anywhere, his flushed face shows his lies.

    • Gregory Herr
      March 2, 2018 at 11:24 pm

      The actual intelligence failure associated with 9/11 was after-the-fact…hook, line, and sinker.

      • geeyp
        March 3, 2018 at 12:02 am

        There was no intelligence failure. It was planned. ahead of time.

        • Gregory Herr
          March 3, 2018 at 4:55 am

          …was referring to the “buy-in”

    • geeyp
      March 3, 2018 at 2:12 am

      Another knowing writer on Russia does a tutorial on “Russiagate” at The Nation and shown on RT.com: Stephen F. Cohen. His takedown of Richard N. Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations, is so refined that he doesn’t need to mention his name.

      • geeyp
        March 3, 2018 at 2:13 am

        Shown on RT.com = reprinted.

      • March 6, 2018 at 8:51 pm

        Did Stephen Cohen recently resign from the Council on Foreign Relations? I think he did, but mutilated Google will not deliver that info when I search for it. I think it was he who I confused with Ray McGovern. And I knew that Ray was a good guy. I still can’t believe I did that. Maybe my small stroke did more damage than I thought.

  18. CitizenOne
    March 2, 2018 at 11:15 pm

    I found it to be quite a surprise that Putin claims Russia has a high speed underwater undetectable doomsday device capable of wiping out large swaths of humanity. No doubt this was designed to counter the current anti Russian hysteria engulfing Washington in a call for a new anti Russian defense initiative and threatening them with more sanctions for the hyped up intelligence assessment that Russia was responsible for election hacking and influencing.

    No doubt that the hysteria was whipped up by the MIC to boost the defense budget, counter Trump’s Russia friendly stance as well as to distract us away from our corrupted election and campaign finance system. It is a classic deception. Blame some foreign devil nation for the results of an election to hide the real reasons for the results which are corrupt campaign finance laws and other abuses such as gerrymandering and voting laws. Add in the effect of the corrupt finance laws to enable massive advertising blitzes to turn key swing regions from districts to states and you have the effect of a commercially funded propaganda campaign. Add in the effect of conservative news outlets like Fox and Sinclair which bias their coverage and you have more propaganda disguised as honest reporting. Sinclair is poised to reap a lion’s share of TV stations if the double whammy of eliminating the ownership limits for media outlets which was abolished by Ajit Pai’s FCC and the proposed buyout by Sinclair of Tribune Media which is now possible under the new deregulated landscape.

    Launched out of Baltimore in 1971, Sinclair has ballooned into a juggernaut that owns or operates nearly 200 TV stations. The merger with Tribune would bring that number to 233, making the company the nation’s largest broadcaster with a reach of 72% of U.S. households, though Sinclair would need to sell some of those licenses in order to comply with the FCC’s nationwide TV ownership limits.

    Bolstering the prospects of the deal: a rule change approved by the FCC in April that loosened those same limits.

    Sinclair attained some notoriety for insisting that it would broadcast Stolen Honor right before the election contest between Bush and Kerry. In early October 2004, it was reported that Sinclair Broadcast Group had ordered all of its stations to air Stolen Honor in the days leading up to the November 2nd presidential election. These news reports touched off a media firestorm. According to television critic Alessandra Stanley, formerly of the New York Times:

    Stolen Honor: Wounds That Never Heal, the highly contested anti-Kerry documentary, should not be shown by the Sinclair Broadcast Group. It should be shown in its entirety on all the networks, cable stations and on public television. This histrionic, often specious and deeply sad film does not do much more damage to Senator John Kerry’s reputation than have the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth’s negative ads, which have flooded television markets in almost every swing state. But it does help viewers better understand the rage fueling the unhappy band of brothers who oppose Mr. Kerry’s candidacy and his claim to heroism. … This film is payback time, a chance to punish one of the most famous antiwar activists, Mr. Kerry, the one who got credit for serving with distinction in combat, then, through the eyes of the veterans in this film, went home to discredit the men left behind.” She also said that Stolen Honor’s imagery “is crude, but powerful”. She also made clear however, that Stolen Honor had various “distortions… intended to hurt Mr. Kerry at the polls”.

    All of these past and current events reveal a nation which has been hijacked by the ultra wealthy and ultra powerful right wing with elements in government, the conservative media and the defense industry lobby which are all conspiring to wrap up control over elections with money, monopoly, propaganda and fear. Naturally they would like to hide all of this from us with an obliging media system and instead blame the reasons for our failing democratic process on Putin.

    So it is really no surprise about the timing of Russian revelations that they have developed doomsday weapons we cannot defend ourselves against. It is a planned message to bring the anti Russian propaganda state in the USA with witch hunting and scapegoating of Russia in the USA’s new McCarthy era to its senses. Putin is saying to us we will not win some preemptive strike and Russia has the means to defend itself against any US strategy if only to assure our destruction along with theirs.

    This no doubt has also been deemed necessary by Russia since the USA abandoned its anti ballistic missile treaty and is actively developing these weapons which might diminish the credibility of a successful Russian conventional ICBM counter attack to a first strike by the USA.

    In short, our government and our media and our military industry are attempting to hide the corruption of our election process with anti Russian fear mongering for their own financial gain and control over the population of the USA via money, propaganda and fear. They may even be planning an actual nuclear war. Who knows?

    I hope that Putin’s message finds some ears in the establishment to alert them to the folly of a notion of a winnable nuclear war. One thing is certain is that Putin is concerned enough over the recent events here to make such announcements. That alone should signal that the Russia blame game has reached a new and terrifying level.

    Perhaps even Robert Mueller will realize he is playing into the hands of the war mongers and he will tone down his witch hunt which has so far found no evidence of collusion between the Russians and the Trump administration to throw the election. I sure hope so.

      • Zachary Smith
        March 3, 2018 at 1:45 am

        Here is what Putin said about the torpedo:

        Now, we all know that the design and development of unmanned weapon systems is another common trend in the world. As concerns Russia, we have developed unmanned submersible vehicles that can move at great depths (I would say extreme depths) intercontinentally, at a speed multiple times higher than the speed of submarines, cutting-edge torpedoes and all kinds of surface vessels, including some of the fastest. It is really fantastic. They are quiet, highly manoeuvrable and have hardly any vulnerabilities for the enemy to exploit. There is simply nothing in the world capable of withstanding them.

        Unmanned underwater vehicles can carry either conventional or nuclear warheads, which enables them to engage various targets, including aircraft groups, coastal fortifications and infrastructure.

        No mention at all of any “dirty bomb” aspects, though of course all atomic weapons are in some sense “dirty”. The thing is fearsome enough even if it has nothing more than a few tons of TNT inside, for I suspect an aircraft carrier would be instantly destroyed.

    • Joe Tedesky
      March 3, 2018 at 12:53 am

      I agree CitizenOne that all of the Mueller noise spouted by CNN, MSNBC, and written about through such notable liars as the NYT & WaPo/CIA is nothing more than distractions away from the sins of the National Security ‘Deep’ State. I might add that all this is happening from within side an extremely powerful nation who brags about ‘how it creates it’s own reality’. ’

      “People like you are still living in what we call the reality-based community. You believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality. That’s not the way the world really works anymore. We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you are studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors, and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.” Carl ‘Turd Blossom’ Rove

      How nice of Rove, hearing such hubris and deceit made so public of how our American system works, just goes to show to how exceptional these elites really think they are. All from a country where even it’s Hollywood script writers go to great lengths to hide the truth, of re-enacted historical events. And why not from a country from where the average citizen when asked on a street poll to who the U.S. fought during WWII, and you will get answers like, ‘was it France, or no maybe it was Russia’ or ‘it was JFK or his brother who stopped it’…. so much for the creeps behind the screen to work with.

      People find it ludicrous to think the FBI dropped the ball on the Florida school shooter, and people think our CIA totally miss the mark with their read on Kim Jung un’s ABM progress, as did the CIA seem to get blindsided with Putin’s announcement of Russia’s defensive might. But why not question the priorities of these near sighted mistakes when the bosses at the top of each agency is more concerned to their directing a media coup against a Deep State unauthorized sitting president…I mean what can be more important that this?

      No CitizenOne you know it as well as anyone our leaders have created their own imagined universe. This is the problem with Empire, and that problem is, is that it starts believing in it’s own lies.

      Kind of like your not crazy if you talk to yourself, just don’t start answering yourself back. Well think of it this way, the U.S. is not only answering itself back it is also not giving out the right answers when it reply’s, but no problem because the question was bogus to begin with….but never fear fellow Americans because it’s all fake news anyway, so it doesn’t matter. What was that Einstein said about insanity?

      Once again I enjoyed your essay CitizenOne. Joe

      • Sam F
        March 3, 2018 at 7:20 am

        The US has indeed been “hijacked by the ultra wealthy” who control elections and mass media with money. It was ripe for corruption in its stable isolation, and its failure to protect the tools of democracy from money.

        Rove’s belief is the celebration of crime, the belief of tyrant opportunists that money=power=virtue no matter how it is obtained. But among “history’s actors” such opportunists often end up dead in the gutter, their names synonymous with evil for all time. One wishes that the accounting was sooner. But until oligarchy is deposed any and all means, such abject moral corruption cannot be prevented, and is in fact the core belief taught by the upper middle and upper classes.

        • Joe Tedesky
          March 3, 2018 at 10:27 am

          Sam, Rove’s quote is like a crime syndicate boss making a boastful speech at a mafia quarterly dinner meeting of ‘the Don’s’. Joe

        • March 6, 2018 at 8:58 pm

          It’s called neoconservatism. It existed before the label. (Shadia Drury is the expert on it and she has written a few books explaining neoconservatism.) And, as some writers are aware, you can wear any political label you like and still be a neocon. That’s why some have referred to Hillary Clinton as a neocon. In fact, neoconservatism is the complement of neoliberalism. One is the ‘devouring dragon’ philosophy and the other is the devouring dragon’s social-economic preference.

      • CitizenOne
        March 3, 2018 at 8:35 pm

        Thanks Joe,

        I enjoy reading your essays too.


  19. Rob Roy
    March 2, 2018 at 11:17 pm

    Why aren’t my posts showing up? I never snark, swear or speak offensively. So, what is happening?

    • David G
      March 3, 2018 at 12:04 am

      Your posts about your posts not showing up are showing up.

      • geeyp
        March 3, 2018 at 12:09 am

        I am sorry for your difficulty, Mr. Roy. Seriously, I am. That said, that was funny, David G.

      • Rob Roy
        March 3, 2018 at 9:49 am

        Too funny, David. You will get this one I expect.

        • David G
          March 3, 2018 at 1:01 pm

          Fwiw, I posted a comment on this very thread that seems to be in permanent moderation, for reasons unknown, never to see the light of day. So you do have my sympathy, Rob Roy!

  20. robjira
    March 3, 2018 at 12:31 am

    I think it was reported on al Jazeera (they all look depressingly similar these days, if one goes by content) that USA war planners responded with something to the effect of “we knew they’d been working on these for a while, and figured it into our current setup.” That statement is about the equivalent of “we’ll immediately launch an investigation into reports of civilian casualties in the latest UAV Hellfire strike in Northern NeverthreatenedtheUSAstan.” While the USA squandered resources on developing systems like the F-22 and the Edsel-esque F-35, Russia simply developed more sensitive radar detection and missile guidance systems. New multi billion dollar super carrier class? Effective medium range anti-carrier missile (that comes in at the water line, and is already in service); when you’re expenditure is one tenth of the other team’s, you maximize bang for buck and Russia (and China) has done just that.
    In the end, realistic (if there are any…I hope at least there are) war planners must realize that going toe ta toe with the Rooskies is a null sum; China too. For at least ten years both have fielded adequate counter measures to the relative best the USA has fielded in the way of missile “defense,” the Charlie Brown Christmas tree result of Ronnie Raygun’s SDI. How many trillions of caveat wealth been poured into this sinkhole? And this reminds me of the significance of Putin’s emphasis on the rubble’s having a firm backing of gold; makes one wonder if we was offering a subtle prediction on the future of the petrodollar.
    Maybe, just maybe the USA will realize that you can push people only so far before they push back. And the USA has been pushing an effing lot of people around.
    I wonder if the rulers here even realize the folly of the situation they themselves have created…nice going, dipsticks.

    • robjira
      March 3, 2018 at 12:39 am

      (I should note that Russia has been absolutely correct that the so called “defense batteries” the USA has stationed in Eastern Europe are readily converted to offensive batteries; approximately 2 hours to swap out the ordnance and do a software patch)

      • CitizenOne
        March 3, 2018 at 9:31 pm

        I agree. The USA has been doing a lot around the World.n These latest indictments handed down by Mueller against a company and 13 people are surely breaking USA law but what a joke compared to the massive meddling around the World by Team USA. Supporting a civil war in Ukraine and a coup and anti Russian violence against ethnic Russians to the point Putin decided to support the people being herded out of the country and then twisting the whole thing up to make it look like Russia just up and attacked Ukraine for no reason and then slapped sanctions on Russia etc.

        I suppose this meddling by the USA and interference is dwarfed by what 13 people employed by one company using twitter and Facebook to post some banners can accomplish? Huh?

        Now we are proposing more sanctions based on the bakers dozen from the east against an entire nation and all of its peoples.

        I would consider anyone to be completely ignorant or else not understanding or learning of anything if they can’t see this type of propaganda and punishment for Russia is a slap in their face. The US exceptionalism states the US can (and does) interfere in everything it bloody well wants to interfere with whenever it wants to even including up to war but 13 people in Russia on Twitter is enough to launch a new cold war.

        But it seems that the damage has been done. Putin has already gotten the message a long time ago and it was delivered by Obama not Trump.

        It cannot be overemphasized how the USA stripped Russia of so much economic partnership between the two economies when Obama signed on to the sanctions against Russia for “attacking Ukraine”. Something which was untrue. Russia defended the ethnic Russians which were being herded out of the country.

        Nothing is new here. The two countries are constantly being ushered to the gates of hell by their respective military industrial complexes. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. Over and over until the end.

    • March 6, 2018 at 9:02 pm

      Lol. Good post. Ah yes, the “politically engineered” F-35, loved by Bernie the ‘socialist’ who wants to create jobs with it while urging Saudis to get busy and bomb, while they seemed to have taken his words to heart – in Yemen.

  21. Realist
    March 3, 2018 at 3:28 am

    “Yesterday’s speech suggested not the onset of a new arms race, but its conclusion, with outright Russian victory and U.S. defeat.”

    It would be a mistake for Russia to start thinking this way. These developments will only spur the Washington MIC to even greater effort. They don’t even have to concoct a specious “missile gap” this time. After all, until every last working American taxpayer is in debtor’s prison, the resources it can call upon are virtually unlimited.

    And, the American media? Understandable that, as their first knee jerk response, they would try to couch Putin’s words as a bluff directed at the Russian voters. After all, he’s nothing but a lying phony on every issue, according to them. However, on down the line, look for them to use Putin’s words as a motivator in the new hybrid war they are doing their part to gin up against Russia. These words will be the 21st century counterpart to Khrushchev’s infamous, “we will bury you.” Just more “proof” of how dangerously aggressive the Russians truly are and why it behooves us to shift every penny in the budget to more armaments. Why bother with health, education and social programs when the Reds are about to begin amphibious landings from Bangor to Boca Raton? In fact, they are living inside all your digital devices already. Let’s see what traitors we can find skulking within the world wide web. What this country needs is a spanking good “two minute hate” to get people focussed throughout the day!

    • Sam F
      March 3, 2018 at 7:39 am

      Yes, the speech will be used by the MIC-owned politicians to demand more military spending, which is always the intent of US threats and provocations. It is difficult to state a strategic defense capability without stating a threat. But at least Putin stated it calmly and without indication of aggression, unlike Kruschev’s 1956 banging his shoe on the table and shouting “We will bury you!” Putin waited until the US MIC had just been fed its billions of budget increases for lying, cheating, and stealing from the people of the United States.

    • Dave P.
      March 3, 2018 at 1:06 pm


      Yes, I have been thinking about what you just said. The entire Power Structure of U.S. lives in an unreal World. May be it was not a good idea for Putin to say all that. But what else he could have said, the way they are being trashed by The West. They are after Russia, their aim for complete KO.

    • Andrew P
      March 4, 2018 at 7:59 am

      The way to take out Russia (or Iran) in one blow is a directed asteroid strike. US efforts must concentrate on diverting asteroids as weapons.

      • Gregory Herr
        March 4, 2018 at 10:32 am

        I can see where that would be comparable in terms of being in-touch-with-reality to current stratagems.

  22. exiled off mainstreet
    March 3, 2018 at 4:08 am

    I’m afraid that the power structure here is too stupid to see that the results of attempting to retain absolute power will be the elimination of everything. The problem is managing decline when the entity declining can destroy the world a number of times over. Gorbachev managed the Russian decline without things being destroyed. I don’t think we’ll be as lucky this time.

  23. March 3, 2018 at 4:56 am

    Remember all the predictions (including by Barack Hussein Obama) that Russia would get into a “quagmire” in Syria?

    Why just that? Remember how Iraqis were going to greet their Amerikastani occupiers with flowers and name a street in Baghdad after Bush?

    • rosemerry
      March 3, 2018 at 4:15 pm

      Remember also Obama insulting Russia as an unproductive backwater , just a gas station. As for Hillary, her insults were grotesque, then she blames Putin for not liking her!!

  24. Diana
    March 3, 2018 at 5:38 am

    Another challenge to consider is China. Alfred McCoy describes its potential here:


  25. John Hawk
    March 3, 2018 at 7:46 am

    I generally appreciate Doctorow’s analyses. However, he is still drinking the kool-aid regarding 9-11, which makes me a little suspicious as to whom he is really reporting, or for whom he works. I wonder what his spin is regarding June 8, 1967: USS Liberty.

    • March 3, 2018 at 1:42 pm

      Can you be specific? What about his reporting about the intelligence breakdown after 9-11 do you take issue with?

      • Gregory Herr
        March 3, 2018 at 11:25 pm

        I can’t speak for John, but Ill tell you what I think. Mr. Doctorow states that it “was the CIA’s lack of skills in the languages and area knowledge of the Middle East that was glaring in the aftermath of the Al-Qaeda attack on the Twin Towers that guided the reshaping of priorities for intelligence.”

        I draw from this that Mr. Doctorow thinks Al-Qaeda attacked the WTC and that the initial impetus (though as he states, not the “greater factor”) for the eventual “breakdown” of intelligence vis-a-vis Russia was a sense (implied) of being caught somewhat “unawares” by 9/11. So we get a “reshaping of priorities”.

        The analysis regarding priorities and resources and eventual problems caused by “outsourcing” may very well may be correct. If so, it is a remarkable to me that our intelligence “community” in the 21st century has not been able to walk and chew gum at the same time. Why on earth would intelligence agencies–tasked with understanding the world and its developments–be deficient in languages and/or entire regions? It’s a simple question raised by an analysis of “losing” intelligence in one area because of a perceived need to “gain” it another. It’s not as if we’re talking about a single individual who can attain only so much expertise.

        Anyway, that aside, I don’t believe that hijackers of two commercial aircraft were able to perform the near miraculous feat of consecutively precision-guiding those aircraft into the Towers. And that is just one of many ludicrous aspects of the “story” of 9/11. So on this score, yes, Doctorow has either drunk the kool-aid, or prefers to pass it over in writing about other matters to which he feels he can be effectual. I’m not beefing with Doctorow here, but think I know where John is coming from. I did also not particularly care for the David & Goliath thing that Zachary addressed so well, but otherwise a worthwhile article on whole.

        • March 4, 2018 at 12:09 am

          Gregory: first of all let me thank you for your usual astute reflections applied to this specific subject. As far as 9-11 goes I reserve judgement on several theories. What bothered me about John Hawk’s remark was spceifically this:”he is still drinking the kool-aid regarding 9-11, which makes me a little suspicious as to whom he is really reporting”. REPORTING TO WHOM?
          Does he really think Gilbert Doctorow is reporting to Putin or some Russian agent? That seems to be the implication of the remark and it is absurd, I don’t know if John Hawk is a” troll”, but the insinuations of this remark leads me to believe that’s a possibility.

          • Gregory Herr
            March 4, 2018 at 12:51 am

            Thank you Bob. I value your reflections.

            Agreed–the expressed gravity of the suspicion doesn’t seem to match up with the quibble. John’s reference to the Liberty, attacked by Israel, would seem to point to a possible (and reasonable) suspicion that Mossad had involvement in 9/11…but still to suggest that Doctorow might be working for Israel is a bit much.

          • March 4, 2018 at 10:58 am

            AHHH yes, Gregory, the irrelevant mention of the USS LIberty could well have been intended to draw out anti-semitic slurs and discredit Doctorow”s analysis and the website at the same time. It’s quite possible that John Hawk is John Hasbara.

        • Andrew P
          March 4, 2018 at 8:04 am

          Why are they deficient in foreign languages? Because Americans generally are. And they have to get those agents from somewhere. What makes the problem worse is how to get enough foreign language experts who lack sympathy for the enemy society they are surveying?

          • March 4, 2018 at 11:14 am

            “What makes the problem worse is how to get enough foreign language experts who lack sympathy for the enemy society they are surveying?” …I heartily agree, Andrew. Sympathy and understanding for another culture are requisites to learning another language and intel spooks are more interested in subversion; therefore anyone from “The Age of Aquarius” must be regarded with suspicion.

          • TS
            March 4, 2018 at 12:46 pm

            > how to get enough foreign language experts who lack sympathy for the enemy society they are surveying?

            Which is why Great Powers have been financing R&D in machine translation for half a century now. And results that are good enough for the bulk of this work now do really seem to be in the offing.

          • March 4, 2018 at 1:20 pm

            TS…machine translation can’t replace human analysis

    • Zachary Smith
      March 4, 2018 at 2:36 am

      In my opinion about the only thing we really know about the Official Story of 9/11 is that it isn’t true. The reality is still in a haze, and may always be. Same as the Kennedy Assassination, though I’m now strongly inclined to believe it was a CIA job in 1963. But that’s all it can be – a strong belief.

      • March 6, 2018 at 9:11 pm

        Give Seymour Hersh’s “The Dark Side Of Camelot” a read. The Kennedys betrayed EVERYONE. Finding culprits, for that reason, as well as the reason that too many witnesses are now dead, will be impossible – for mere mortals.

        As for Seymour Hersh, I’m not a fan. But he’s given us much. I love Douglas Valentine’s take on him: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ZV_Xm7bsgo

  26. bozhidar balkas
    March 3, 2018 at 7:56 am

    Bully bullied. And now what? Negotiating!!??

  27. Piotr Berman
    March 3, 2018 at 10:26 am

    Outsourcing intelligence work seems so insane that it is hard to comprehend how otherwise intelligent people could go for it. I suspect an overdoes of Ayn Rand reading. Just one example: Edward Snowden. He had a short stint of direct work for CIA, but otherwise he word for contractors and his esprit d’corp shriveled. Another aspect is that it is somewhat easier to make mercenaries say what you want being said than the permanent staff.

    My impression was that serious rot stemmed from the impossible goal of Bush Cheney combo. Those who knew enough were opposing, not because of moral objections but simply because of understanding that direct control of Afghanistan and Iraq cannot work given the “cultural gap” — locals being hopelessly divided between those who despise the West and those who loathe, and Americans similarly divided between those who hate Muslim and those who patronize them, the necessary level of cooperation “remains elusive”. So the actual experts got to go. That doomed the endeavor even further.

    Concerning Russian experts, many were developing convenient theories like “missile gap” that were required by the politicians and Military-Industrial Complex. Lamentable Condoleeza Rice was educated as a Russian/Soviet expert — actually, her expertise was on delivering opinions that were precisely matching the expectations.

    However, what we may see here is a gap in “human intelligence”, i.e. too few Russian traitors knowing about the weapon development were recruited. The periods of poverty in Russia following the collapse of Soviet Union should be an excellent opportunity to find such people. But another explanation is that CIA actually knew, and the decision makers decided to ignore it.

  28. March 3, 2018 at 11:16 am

    The USA has been developing nuclear powered aircraft since 1994 and now has in it’s stable military craft so advanced that it will only use and reveal them as a last resort, so as not to expose the stunning advance in technology.

    Putin has nothing over on the USA, it is just sad that USA Pols have been so corrupt and sleazy as to make Russia an enemy rather than an ally, as I believe they wanted to be.

    • Apollonius
      March 3, 2018 at 6:38 pm

      Nuclear powered aircraft is a Cold War idea, US even made one nuclear powered bomber, until someone bright finally understood that lifting nuclear reactor in the air, from where it can abruptly go down,( say engine problems), is not smart. Potential for accident is enormous.
      Next:what Putin wanted to convey is this situation : we have one guy sharpening the big blade, obviously intending to cut the guy in front of him. THat guy said: look, it is no use. I have a gun. And if you will attack, you will be dead. That is the whole message. But I doubt they will understand; because you can´t explain to someone something if he doesn´t WANT to understand.

  29. DaveJoe
    March 3, 2018 at 3:41 pm

    My usual reaction to praise of “patriotic determination” would be to respond that patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel. However, this is different. While Russians (and many other countries) have grit and patriotic determination, our country has regressed to such a failed state that nothing but money making matters.

    But why wonder? Wasn’t this country founded on the principle of “life, liberty and the pursuit of money making”?

  30. rosemerry
    March 3, 2018 at 3:41 pm

    As expected, a masterful contribution from Gilbert Doctorow. So many surprises for the pentagon and the 17 “intelligence agencies” spending over a year on pathetic anti-Russian minutiae while all of this passed by.

    Great summary of the big changes a real,knowledgeable and honest observer can detail.

    eg “In passing, the new systems also render useless and turn into sitting duck targets the entire US navy, with its aircraft carrier formations.”

    • Zachary Smith
      March 4, 2018 at 2:43 am

      The Russian revelations ought not to be given excessive hype, for there are many ways to take out an aircraft carrier. The Chinese seem to have used another approach – a specialized ICBM coming down at high speed. Aiming that ICBM for a direct hit is the main problem for the attacker, and should that happen I don’t see any practical defense to prevent some incredible damage to the ship.

  31. Alex
    March 3, 2018 at 8:30 pm

    Brilliant analysis!

    Russian guy

  32. Mark
    March 3, 2018 at 8:51 pm

    After decades of consuming contaminated food and drink what do you expect? And then there’s vaccines and prescription drugs. Hell, the US has become a zombie nation, as have most other western countries for the same reason.

    The title of your book reads “Does The United States Have a Future?”. The answer is No!

  33. Thomas McGaffey
    March 4, 2018 at 5:56 am

    The failure of most people to see reality when it is shoved in its face is part of the problem…case in point:

    “”And yet, when 9/11 struck, many of those in higher positions in the CIA had come to the Agency as Russia experts. It was the CIA’s lack of skills in the languages and area knowledge of the Middle East that was glaring in the aftermath of the Al-Qaeda attack on the Twin Towers that guided the reshaping of priorities for intelligence. Clearly this deficiency and the necessary re-profiling of expertise could not augur well for the continued employment of holdovers from the Soviet desk.”

    Al-Qaeda had nothing to do with 9/11…unless it had the technology, resources and mechanisms to turn more than 80% of two, 500,000 ton buildings to dust – from the top down. (see “Where Did the Towers Go?” by Dr. Judy Wood, BS, MS, Ph.D)
    Einstein said, “Question Everything”. Only by doing that can reality be seen…which leads to true understanding – of the who, what, when, were, why and how.

  34. Mike I
    March 4, 2018 at 7:50 am

    Not doing well in Syria, are you, Pu.

  35. richard braverman
    March 5, 2018 at 2:46 pm

    The intelligence agency failures that Dr. Doctorow identifies truly have a long history and maybe related the originally purpose and loyalties of those same agencies. Do those agencies represent the people of the United States or do they reflect the aspirations of an elite that only has loyalty to itself? That might explain calling the USSR the evil empire while selling it grain and providing financial credits to keep it alive. It may also explain, the uninterrupted military, financial, and political cover given to the state of Israel, aka the greatest welfare queen in history, so that the racist settler state of Israel does not have to confront 100 million Arabs but rather focus on abusing, robbing and murdering three million Palestinians, the ones we were told for fifty years did not exist.

  36. March 6, 2018 at 8:11 pm

    “…the Russian capture of Crimea…” Rubbish!

  37. March 6, 2018 at 8:21 pm

    “Outsourced intelligence is more likely to meet the demands of the paymaster than to have some intellectual integrity and broad perspective of its own.” Not ‘only’ outsourced. This is partly why the Phoenix Program in Vietnam was a disaster. The psychos in the field in Vietnam knew what their bloodthirsty paymasters wanted and gave it to them, even when the enemies they were to route out didn’t exist. Enter innocent civilian stand-ins. Of course Phoenix (which today’s fusion centers are modelled on) was a disaster any way you slice it.

  38. lachlan
    March 9, 2018 at 11:01 am

    At the end of 2014, Russia launched ‘wartime government’ HQ as part of a major military upgrade. That should have rung alarm bells about what the new command center was about. So now Russia has the advanced weaponry and advanced command Centre to best deploy the weaponry.
    The American military is hamstrung by the financial ruin of the F35 and the unfounded belief that planes can be built with defects and fixed later (concurrency). The f35 aka being the plane that ate the Pentagon.
    Both Russia and China have missile defense systems which can detect and destroy the F35. I guess they cheer each time the cost of the F35 goes up and its performance speculations are lowered.
    Russia also seems to have stolen a march on American in the field of electronic warfare – see the attack on the USS Donald Cook.

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