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Thu Sep 13, 2012, 03:20 AM

Russians Say Attack in Libya Vindicates Their Position

Source: New York Times

MOSCOW — Upon learning of the violent death of the United States ambassador to Libya on Wednesday, many Russians responded with variations on “I told you so.”

Russia has long argued that the West should not support popular uprisings against dictatorships in the Middle East lest Islamic fundamentalism take hold. Vladimir V. Putin, then serving as prime minister, was especially enraged last fall after an angry crowd killed his ally, Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi, an event he later condemned as a “repulsive, disgusting” scene.

Since then, Russia has blocked Western initiatives to force Syria’s president, Bashar al-Assad, from power despite a bloody crackdown on the opposition. Russians’ responses to the storming of the American Consulate in Benghazi underlined the deep policy divide. A prime-time news report pointedly juxtaposed images of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens’s death with Colonel Qaddafi’s, pointing at their similarities, then cut to footage of Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton reacting to the Libyan leader’s death with a cursory “wow.”

Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Margelov said that passions had been stoked by the uprisings and that they “splash out in the form of terrorist acts or massacres of nonbelievers or an attack on embassies and consulates. The frequency of these outbursts, unfortunately, has been growing since the ‘Arab Spring’ brought to power political groups of Islamic orientation, either open or indirect,” Mr. Margelov said, in comments to the Interfax news agency. A telegram from Foreign Minister Sergey V. Lavrov to Mrs. Clinton condemned the attack as a crime, and said “it confirms once again the necessity of combining the forces of our countries and the whole international community to fight with the evil of terrorism.”

<snip>



Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/13/world/europe/russians-say-anti-american-attack-in-libya-vindicates-their-position.html?_r=1&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20120913



Ooh, harsh. And it gets harsher after the snip.

13 replies, 2642 views

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 03:40 AM

1. Says one control freak to another.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 03:45 AM

2. That's why I take RT with a grain of salt, or two.

Lots of Bloggers on Russia Today.

They had Assuage. And they have Tom Hartman. I rarely see them on MHz Worldview's RT coverage. But I see a lot of conspiracy theories from Bloggers.

Not the best of news sources, in my humble opinion. But, not FOX. I watch it on occasion.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 03:51 AM

3. All excellent points...

But Russia can't complain since they failed to prevent the intervention...

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Response to David__77 (Reply #3)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 05:10 AM

5. David - "they failed to prevent the intervention"

because they fell for manipulation of the UN resolution . That of course is the background to Russia not falling for a similar situation with regard to Syria.

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Response to dipsydoodle (Reply #5)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 10:42 AM

12. I don't know why that is so hard to understand for some people.

 

Russia has been correct on these issues. Consistently.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 05:04 AM

4. saying 'we told you so' makes the russians looks smarmy.

But at the same time, if the west gets involved in civil wars, it can't act surprised when there is blow back, and its naive to think that Egyptians or Libyans have forgotten that the US switched sides with Mubarak and even Gadaffi. Its also a little silly to act surprised that in a country like Libya, rife will unsecured weapons, that something wouldn't happen on 9-11.

We should ready ourselves for the inevitable 'Al Qaeda plot' fear-mongering too, until after the election, even though it may have just been a protest gone out of control, with tragic consequences. Every side is spinning this to their own best advantage.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 05:45 AM

6. Well, when you're right, you're right. (nt)

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Response to harmonicon (Reply #6)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 01:17 PM

13. Russia learned all about “freedom fighters” from Afghanistan & Chechnya.

I can see why they're laughing at us.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 06:18 AM

7. Said the BIggest Tyrants of them All

Sure, Russia is fully justified in saying that popular uprisings against tyrants are bad. They would be in BIG trouble if they approved. However, what of all those little rebellions the Soviets sponsored in Africa over the years. Or is that no longer Russian history?

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 06:29 AM

8. "dictators were preferable to the constellation of armed forces that emerges when they are unseated.

Yevgeny Y. Satanovsky, president of the Institute of the Middle East in Moscow, said American leaders should not expect “one word of sympathy” from their Russian counterparts.

“It is a tragedy to the family of the poor ambassador, but his blood is on the hands of Hillary Clinton personally and Barack Obama personally,” Mr. Satanovsky said. He said Russian warnings against intervention in the Middle East came from the bitter experience of the Soviets in Afghanistan.

“You are the Soviet Union now, guys, and you pay the price,” he said. “You are trying to distribute democracy the way we tried to distribute socialism. You do it the Western way. They hate both.” He said dictators were preferable to the constellation of armed forces that emerges when they are unseated.

“They lynched Qaddafi — do you really think they will be thankful to you?” he said. “They use stupid white people from a big rich and stupid country which they really hate.”


I suppose if one adheres to the policy of installing and protecting dictators - one which both the US and the Russia (at least the USSR) have a long history of in the Middle East, then "dictators are preferable..." However, I would not want to be the one tasked with telling people in those countries that they are different from us and should be comfortable with life under a dictator. They really should accept less freedom in exchange for more security - at least security from 'bad guys' not connected with the government.

Mr. Satanovsky is quite right that democracies are much messier than dictatorships. It is much harder to repress dissent, even violent dissent. Since the opposition under a dictator is repressed the rulers often seem to be quite popular in fact. And by centralizing the violence and repression in the dictator's hands - often done in ways that the rest of the world does not easily see - such countries seem outwardly to be peaceful and popular.

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Response to pampango (Reply #8)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 06:35 AM

9. I would say "the policy of installing and protecting dictators",

in the case of the USA, refers mainly to Latin America.

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Response to dipsydoodle (Reply #9)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 08:03 AM

11. Mainly, yes but not exclusively. The US supported dictators in South Korea, the Philippines and

South Vietnam. Mubarak was "our guy" for decades in Egypt as was the Shah in Iran. Heck we even supported the dictators in Greece and Spain.

You are right that the US has installed and protected dictators more often and for longer in Latin America, but we have applied to same principles in other parts of the world when we had the chance.

It is heartening that almost all of those countries have kicked out their dictators and are either functioning democracies or are headed in the right direction. Only Vietnam would not belong in that group.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2012, 06:53 AM

10. Hmm

This post gives me a mental image of an old cold war general, sitting around smirking into his vodka. You know, I don't think most Russians are smarmy enough to say "I told you so". At least, I would hope they weren't that smarmy. This strikes me as the political opinions of some government officials.

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