An Open Letter to Maria Butina From Her Victims

by Kseniya Kirillova An open letter to Maria Butina from her victims Very few people know that before her arrival in the US, Maria Butina, recently convicted of spying for Moscow, had managed to gain trust with the Russian opposition to Vladimir Putin, and participated in human rights and opposition efforts in the country. Her work and apparent commitment was so compelling that none of the activists she knew and participated with could even imagine that she worked for the government or intelligence agencies.  Parallel to Butina’s “opposition” activities, she…

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Faith in Putin Hits 13-year Low, Yet Some Russians Still Trust Him

by Kseniya Kirillova Faith the Russian people have in President Vladimir Putin dropped to the lowest level its been in more than a decade, dealing a serious blow to the image of the Russian leader as the widely popular and respected father-figure of the state. Confidence in Mr. Putin dropped more than a third early this year to a 13-year low, according to a poll by the Russian Center for the Study of Public Opinion (VTsIOM), published in late January.  Just under 33% of Russians expressed trust in their president,…

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Otto Warmbier, Kim Jong-un and The Feckless American President

photo of American President Donald Trump gratuitously shaking hands with brutal and oppressive North Korean autocrat, Kim Jong-un.

by Richard Cameron   Co-host of the NPR (National Public Radio) program, “Here And Now”, Audie Cornish, interviewed Washington Post journalist Anna Fifield yesterday on a story she authored that is still resonating internationally. Before we review her comments and her story, let’s set the background briefly. Otto Warmbier was a 21 year old student at the University of Virginia, who elected to participate in a study abroad program in late 2015, part of which found him taking a 5 day side excursion from Hong Kong, to Pyongyang, North Korea…

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Mueller Report Results In Premature Exoneration For Trump Mouthpieces

photo of Robert Mueller, former FBI director and Special Counsel

by Richard Cameron   Trump’s media cartel and others in Republican ranks are already speculating that the Special Counsel’s report turned in to the Justice Department on Friday, will not contain specific details about Donald Trump’s participation in a conspiracy with Russian operatives to impact the outcome of the 2016 presidential election. The notion among those in these circles is that because there may be no ‘smoking gun’ in Robert Mueller’s report specifically demonstrating Trump himself coordinating with the Russians, that they can spin Mueller’s summary into an exoneration of…

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Putin’s Nuclear Blackmail of the U.S.: Who is the Intended Target?

by Kseniya Kirillova Just recently, the Russian state channel Russia-1 listed US military facilities that would become Kremlin’s possible targets in the event of a nuclear strike. In particular, the TV host Dmitry Kiselev (pictured above) threatened to aim the Zircon hypersonic missiles at the Pentagon and several command posts, including the control centre for nuclear forces, writes Kseniya Kirillova. As horrifying as they may be, there is nothing new in the latest case of Russian “nuclear swagger” demonstrated in President Vladimir Putin‘s comments made in February that his country’s military is ready for a…

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Are Russian Immigrants an Unwitting Fifth Column of the Kremlin?

by Kseniya Kirillova The Russian-speaking diaspora abroad is quite numerous in many Western countries and is made up of many different waves of emigration – from descendants of White Russian émigrés to those who are arriving today. However, all these waves are characterized by a fairly high level of support for Vladimir Putin. It’s especially surprising to see such sentiments amongst people who emigrated in Soviet times, not so much for economic reasons but rather in search of freedom. However, even among them, support is quite high for a president…

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The Russian Government’s War Against the Integrity Initiative: Putin’s Propaganda Machine Fights Back

by Kseniya Kirillova In late November, 2018, Russian news agencies, like state-sponsored RIA Novosti and Mint Press News, accused the Integrity Initiative, a U.K.-based group devoted to countering Russia’s use of the media to spread propaganda, of being “…engaged in highly deceptive covert propaganda campaigns funded by the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), NATO, Facebook and hardline national security institutions.”  They claim in their reports, the Integrity Initiative “was used to interfere in the internal affairs of European countries and for the information war against Russia.” Citing documents stolen…

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Paul Whelan Isn’t an American Spy, but is He a Russian Tool?

by Kseniya Kirillova On December 28th of last year, Canadian-American Paul Whelan was detained in Moscow by police on suspicion of espionage after he was found in possession of classified information belonging to the Russian government.  The FSB (Russian federal security service) claims Mr. Whelan, a former U.S. Marine, was involved in an American intelligence operation, but his friends and members of the American intelligence service say he was set up. According to Russian news agency Rosbalt, citing sources in the intelligence community, Mr. Whelan was detained after receiving a…

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What Does Putin Really Want?

by Tony Wyman “It is very difficult to predict with certainty what is going to happen. I am convinced, given not just the events of yesterday but the cumulative set of events that have taken place, that this change is real… The rapidity of change is mind-boggling. The quest for freedom is stronger than steel, more permanent than concrete.” – Pres. George H.W. Bush, Nov 12, 1989, three days after the Berlin Wall was opened, beginning the end of the Cold War Few people in 1989 would have argued with…

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Many Russian Christians Criticize the Putin Regime, But not Church Officials

by Kseniya Kirillova A new Russian “socio-political club” called The New Orthodoxy was announced in Moscow in October. Its founders assert that the name originates not in religion, but in the eponymous innovative model of economic development created in the 1930s in the USA which contributed to the country’s recovery from the Great Depression. However, the movement’s religious roots are still evident. According to the list of founders, it includes Lutherans, Old Catholics, the Party of the 10 Commandments, created by evangelical Christians, and other organizations associated with religion – along with…

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