by Larry Johnson
The western propaganda machine is spinning furiously and succeeds in exposing its descent into absurdity. I encourage you to read Andrei Martyanov’s latest, It Is Not Accidental, and Moon of Alabama’s healthy rant, Quality Of Ukraine Reporting Continues To Deteriorate. Both gentlemen perform a public service in skewering the pathetic display of journalism, especially the woeful product of the Washington Post.
The Washington Post article written by Greg Miller and Catherine Belton–Russia’s Spies Misread Ukraine and Misled Kremlin as War Loomed–is truly appalling. For example, it is rife with contradictions. Consider their first claim:
In the final days before the invasion of Ukraine, Russia’s security service began sending cryptic instructions to informants in Kyiv. Pack up and get out of the capital, the Kremlin collaborators were told, but leave behind the keys to your homes.
The directions came from senior officers in a unit of Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) with a prosaic name — the Department of Operational Information — but an ominous assignment: ensure the decapitation of the Ukrainian government and oversee the installation of a pro-Russian regime.
How does one “decapitate” the Ukrainian government if you order all of your key informants to get the hell out of Dodge City? We are not talking about low-level sources who are reporting on Zelensky’s preferred brand of toilet paper or best source for Colombian cocaine. These sources are high level with access to the Presidency and the Ministry of Defense. If Russia was serious about “decapitating” the Ukrainian leadership and taking over, then Russia’s security service should have been giving orders to seize communication centers and key power stations, to apprehend or kill the major political and military leaders. That is how an intelligence led beheading is supposed to occur. Yet, Ukrainian sources are telling the gullible Washington Post reporters that the FSB was telling its sources to beat feet from Kiev. Yeah, that makes sense.
Next up, this banality:
the FSB has spent decades spying on Ukraine. . . No aspect of the FSB’s intelligence mission outside Russia was more important than burrowing into all levels of Ukrainian society.
What next? Dog licks own testicles? Sun rises in the East? It is dark at night when there is no moon? C’mon man. Any intelligence agency worth its salt recruits human sources that are in very sensitive positions. What Miller and Belton fail to consider (or report) is that the FSB was using its sources to track what Ukraine was doing in response to the Russian invasion and identify key targets. For instance, the attack on Yavoriv–a defacto NATO base in western Ukraine–on March 13 killed a number of foreign mercenaries and disrupted U.S. and European efforts to send Ukraine military supplies.
This claim by Miller and Belton is jaw-dropping:
The humiliations of Russia’s military have largely overshadowed the failures of the FSB and other intelligence agencies.
Humiliations? What? You mean that taking Mariupol and capturing 2500 members of the Nazi fanatics knows as the AZOV battalion was really a humiliation? Are the Russians humiliated by their successful support of the Luhansk and Donetsk militias to push Ukrainian forces from the Donbas while killing an estimated 200,000 Ukrainian troops in less than six months? Sounds shameful to me. Perhaps Russia is humiliated by its failure to run out of precision guided missiles despite repeated predictions from western intelligence services that Russia was on the ropes. Could it be that Miller and Belton do not know the meaning of the word, “humiliation?” This calls for the Princess Bride:
Another “gem” from Miller and Belton is that the Russians are wildly unpopular in Ukraine:
Even so, officials said, the FSB continued to feed the Kremlin rosy assessments that Ukraine’s masses would welcome the arrival of Russia’s military and the restoration of Moscow-friendly rule.
I guess the intrepid Washington Post reporters are locked up with the January 6th defendants and do not have access to the media reports that show, in fact, the Russians are being welcomed enthusiastically in the cities they have liberated and are preparing to hold new elections. Note that there are no contradictory reports of a massive uprising of Ukrainians in the combat zones killing Russians. Notice that Miller and Belton steer clear of the Amnesty International report excoriating Ukraine for using Ukrainians has human hostages. Might explain why Ukrainians are seeking shelter in those communities still under Ukrainian control in the Donetsk Republic.
Then you get this stunner:
Six months into the war, neither side appears to have a clear upper hand.
Ukraine’s security agencies have scored notable victories.
Say what? The Donetsk and Luhansk Republics, with Russian support, are moving inexorably forward. Russia controls the air and has not been push out of a single major defensive position. All of this while stacking Ukrainian casualties like piles of firewood that Europe will need, come winter, to heat their bath houses. It appears the only “notable victory” of Ukrainian security services is successfully bullshitting credulous folks in the United States and Europe. That success apparently gets them more weapons that they can in turn sell on the black market and build up their illicit retirement funds. Just a guess.