"Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced" - James Baldwin
Sunday 27 February 2022
Cash Cow or Mushroom Cloud
Murray, ex-UK ambassador to Uzbekistan who was sacked by Tony Blair
for exposing human rights violations there, tweeted this today:
“Russia—an economy the size of Italy—even with Belarus cannot
quickly subjugate Ukraine. But the political classes will push the
irrational fear that Russia could invade all of Europe, for Christ's
sake, to feed yet more cash to the military and arms industry.”
is no doubt in my mind that Russia, under the Putin regime, has the
capability to inflict massive destruction on its enemies both at home
and abroad. Call me a cynic, but I suspect that, as I write this,
Russian oligarch—and Putin friend—Gennady Timchenko is clinking
his champagne glass with Rees Mogg.
following is all true, except the bits that aren’t. I imagine it
goes something like this. Timchendo is telling Rees Mogg not to worry
about the temporary halt to his Russian investments in Novatek and
Rossiya. “Anyway,” he laughs, “didn’t you make a killing on
their sale?” Mogg
raises himself from the sofa and pours them both another glass of
Veuve Clicquot, “Please congratulate
putting Russian nuclear forces on ‘alert’. ‘This will guarantee morre monies for arms companies from Salisbury to
Seattle, St Petersburg to Severodvinsk.
And as you know, my friend,” adds Mogg, “it will keep everyone
completed, Gennady asks Mogg how his son is doing at Eton. "Has he
made friends yet with any Russian boys? It will be useful for him in
the future.” He taps his nose.
to Craig’s words. Thirty years ago, I left besieged Sarajevo on a
Russian air force Ilyushin II-86. There were three other passengers
on an otherwise empty cargo plane. At the front end there was a
hissing samovar with an open flame. The navigator kindly poured me a
cup of dark tea. He invited me to sit beside him at the front of the
aircraft, below the pilot.
we taxied for take-off, he rolled out a map and from a side drawer,
took out a slide and compass. As we left the runway, he spoke some
numbers into his mic to the pilot. A few moments later, he tore his
headphones off and threw them aside. He looked at me and laughed.
“Not work. Nothing work in this plane. No worries we will get
then shouted the same numbers to the pilot.
thought then as I think now. There will continue to be terrible
suffering for the peoples of the world, but for governments, war is
for profit. They have no desire to exchange their cash cow for a