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[US Foreign Policy] A Generation of War

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Posts

  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    Not sure the agent was a "patriot" if he was a Russian national who was spying for the USA! I don't think we like the reverse.

    But I hope he's safe anyway.

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  • GaddezGaddez Registered User regular
    It's probably a bad sign that I'm not offended or upset by this.

    Like, In my head I know this is aweful and destroys the credibility of american intelligence as a group that people can work with, but by this point trump being astoundingly shitty and incompetent when he isn't actively malicious has left me really numb.

    Richy wrote: »
    But I think the resistance I’m getting more has to do with “rawr! Loklar said it! Rage!” than anything else.

    No, it has to do with the fact that you're done nothing but throw lies, blatant flasehoods, and downright dumb statements at us so far.
  • HefflingHeffling No Pic EverRegistered User regular
    We lost an asset in Russia that could take pictures of Russia presidential documents and send them to us because of a Russian asset that can take pictures of US presidential documents and send them to Russia.

    If a movement doesn't have someone that can sit down opposite those in a position of power and strike a deal, how can that movement achieve success?
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  • Commander ZoomCommander Zoom Registered User regular
    Is this treason yet?

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  • PreacherPreacher Registered User regular
    Not sure the agent was a "patriot" if he was a Russian national who was spying for the USA! I don't think we like the reverse.

    But I hope he's safe anyway.

    Eh spies for us are patriots, spies against us our traitors. That's how any government in the history of time works.

    I would like some money because these are artisanal nuggets of wisdom philistine.

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  • GaddezGaddez Registered User regular
    An argument could be made that russians opposing putin are patriots due to the fact that Putin cares less about actual russia (a country with a weak economy, declining population, limited free speech and ethnocentric issues) then he does fantasy russia (A russia where everyone supports him, is the pre-eminent world power, and he routinely travels about on horseback shirtless) and taking him down is better for the nation as a whole.

    Richy wrote: »
    But I think the resistance I’m getting more has to do with “rawr! Loklar said it! Rage!” than anything else.

    No, it has to do with the fact that you're done nothing but throw lies, blatant flasehoods, and downright dumb statements at us so far.
    CelestialBadgernever dieGnome-Interruptus
  • GONG-00GONG-00 Registered User regular
    edited September 10
    GONG-00 on
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  • OneAngryPossumOneAngryPossum Registered User regular
    Heffling wrote: »
    We lost an asset in Russia that could take pictures of Russia presidential documents and send them to us because of a Russian asset that can take pictures of US presidential documents and send them to Russia.

    I haven’t seen reporting making this link clear yet. Clarity is admittedly in short supply, but I’d like more information on the specifics of this. I do wonder if this was related to the intel community withholding some information from Trump for fear of revealing sources.

  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    An argument could be made that russians opposing putin are patriots due to the fact that Putin cares less about actual russia (a country with a weak economy, declining population, limited free speech and ethnocentric issues) then he does fantasy russia (A russia where everyone supports him, is the pre-eminent world power, and he routinely travels about on horseback shirtless) and taking him down is better for the nation as a whole.

    In that case would a US spy for a more functional country (are there any? Denmark or something?) be a "patriot"?

    Julius
  • Doctor DetroitDoctor Detroit Registered User regular
    Is this treason yet?

    Not sure, but we definitely aren't making the most of it yet.

  • GaddezGaddez Registered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    An argument could be made that russians opposing putin are patriots due to the fact that Putin cares less about actual russia (a country with a weak economy, declining population, limited free speech and ethnocentric issues) then he does fantasy russia (A russia where everyone supports him, is the pre-eminent world power, and he routinely travels about on horseback shirtless) and taking him down is better for the nation as a whole.

    In that case would a US spy for a more functional country (are there any? Denmark or something?) be a "patriot"?

    I'm going to go out on a limb and say yes as long as it has a practical application for the purposes of realigning the US (i.e. Helping to undermine the influence of oil companies or aggracorps) as opposed to shit disturbing (like what snowden did by blabbing about the US spying on allies).

    Richy wrote: »
    But I think the resistance I’m getting more has to do with “rawr! Loklar said it! Rage!” than anything else.

    No, it has to do with the fact that you're done nothing but throw lies, blatant flasehoods, and downright dumb statements at us so far.
  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    An argument could be made that russians opposing putin are patriots due to the fact that Putin cares less about actual russia (a country with a weak economy, declining population, limited free speech and ethnocentric issues) then he does fantasy russia (A russia where everyone supports him, is the pre-eminent world power, and he routinely travels about on horseback shirtless) and taking him down is better for the nation as a whole.

    In that case would a US spy for a more functional country (are there any? Denmark or something?) be a "patriot"?

    Not to the Danes.

  • NSDFRandNSDFRand FloridaRegistered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    Gaddez wrote: »
    An argument could be made that russians opposing putin are patriots due to the fact that Putin cares less about actual russia (a country with a weak economy, declining population, limited free speech and ethnocentric issues) then he does fantasy russia (A russia where everyone supports him, is the pre-eminent world power, and he routinely travels about on horseback shirtless) and taking him down is better for the nation as a whole.

    In that case would a US spy for a more functional country (are there any? Denmark or something?) be a "patriot"?

    I'm going to go out on a limb and say yes as long as it has a practical application for the purposes of realigning the US (i.e. Helping to undermine the influence of oil companies or aggracorps) as opposed to shit disturbing (like what snowden did by blabbing about the US spying on allies).

    What even is this argument?

    So your position is that US persons with access committing espionage against the US is okay when they are working to "realign" the US to a political position you prefer, but somehow Snowden doesn't align with this?

    I would not have done the same as Snowden, but I certainly would not dismiss what he did as "blabbing". He made a choice which he thought was ethical based on his understanding of the responsibility of the IC to not just contribute to the physical defense of the homeland but also the defense of our values and constitutional protections which he saw were being skirted or outright violated.

    The 2nd Amendment is unarguably one of the most liberal, liberating and radical statements ever made in human history.
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  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    An argument could be made that russians opposing putin are patriots due to the fact that Putin cares less about actual russia (a country with a weak economy, declining population, limited free speech and ethnocentric issues) then he does fantasy russia (A russia where everyone supports him, is the pre-eminent world power, and he routinely travels about on horseback shirtless) and taking him down is better for the nation as a whole.

    There is a difference between opposing Putin and spying for the US government.

    NSDFRandArbitraryDescriptorKaputa
  • NSDFRandNSDFRand FloridaRegistered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    An argument could be made that russians opposing putin are patriots due to the fact that Putin cares less about actual russia (a country with a weak economy, declining population, limited free speech and ethnocentric issues) then he does fantasy russia (A russia where everyone supports him, is the pre-eminent world power, and he routinely travels about on horseback shirtless) and taking him down is better for the nation as a whole.

    This is assuming that Putin doesn't actually have popular support.

    We (practitioners, academics, policy makers working in foreign policy, and in this case laymen) in the US, especially those who fall within establishment or establishment leaning institutions, always look at other states through the Western Liberal Democratic (but specifically US) lens all the time, and I do not think it is necessarily accurate to state that Putin cares less about "actual Russia" because Russia has issues almost every state has. Nor do I think it should be taken as an accurate underlying assumption that he enjoys zero support despite his undemocratic position. I think a safer underlying assumption is that Russian Democracy is going to look different than American Democracy (and even then I could point to the Free Speech thread as an example of support for restrictions or limitations on free speech not being exclusively Russian in nature) and Russian (or Iranian, Saudi, Syrian, Egyptian, Libyan, Israeli, Chinese, Korean etc.) citizens expect something different from their state than American citizens do with or without a flavor of democratic system.

    The 2nd Amendment is unarguably one of the most liberal, liberating and radical statements ever made in human history.
    Julius
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited September 10
    Well if you're opposing Putin but not supporting international actors you're probably not really opposing Putin. Any internal dissent in that type of system that has not seen you already dead doesn't really push the needle and can even be used to support the current apparatus of state. If Trump had a third term and rigged the elections as such i would not consider spying on him for the EU(or Canada, or Mexico) as a treasonous act.

    Edit: Does Putin have "popular support" or has he manufactured it such that he cannot not have popular support. Its hard to say one or the other, which is a significant problem in determining legitimacy. Which is to say that if the more of a question there is the more the answer is definitely "no".

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  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Putin doing a bit of voter fraud is undemocractic. Republicans literally rigging the system from the ground up so they gain majorities in legislatures despite minority support is totally democratic.


    Though I suppose that an argument could be made that due to Republicans not caring about the US, real patriots should work with foreign governments to overthrow them.

  • NSDFRandNSDFRand FloridaRegistered User regular
    Goumindong wrote: »
    Well if you're opposing Putin but not supporting international actors you're probably not really opposing Putin. Any internal dissent in that type of system that has not seen you already dead doesn't really push the needle and can even be used to support the current apparatus of state. If Trump had a third term and rigged the elections as such i would not consider spying on him for the EU(or Canada, or Mexico) as a treasonous act.

    Not supporting them by conducting espionage is not really opposing Putin?

    One, like Alexei Navalny, can oppose Putin and his party (and effectively the other major parties) without spying for the US. One can also want to get Putin out of power without turning their own country into a failed or failing state. I'm sure Alexei Navalny, who has been imprisoned because of his political opposition would like to know that he is not really opposing Putin.

    If internal dissent can be used by the state to "support the current apparatus of state", then political opposition committing espionage can most certainly do much more damage than simple political opposition. I'm not even sure how this is a reasonable position.

    The 2nd Amendment is unarguably one of the most liberal, liberating and radical statements ever made in human history.
    JuliusKaputa
  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    For the record, Putin does have popular support. While there was obvious voter fraud during the 2018 elections, Russian democracy is free enough that it didn't do more than make the win seem more overwhelming than it really was.

    A lot of Russians like Putin and what he has to say. And this should not in any way be a surprise to anyone, least of all Americans.

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  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited September 10
    Julius wrote: »
    Putin doing a bit of voter fraud is undemocractic. Republicans literally rigging the system from the ground up so they gain majorities in legislatures despite minority support is totally democratic.


    Though I suppose that an argument could be made that due to Republicans not caring about the US, real patriots should work with foreign governments to overthrow them.

    No. Its totally undemocratic. But we aren't quite at the point where there is a President for life. Obama did indeed win in 2008 and was President until 3 years ago. Putin has been in power in Russia since 2000.

    NSDFRand wrote: »
    If internal dissent can be used by the state to "support the current apparatus of state", then political opposition committing espionage can most certainly do much more damage than simple political opposition. I'm not even sure how this is a reasonable position.

    If internal dissent cannot bring down the state but external actions can then its not an unreasonable position no...

    Similarly the reason that internal dissent can be used to support the apparatus of state is that it can be constructed to give a veneer of legitimacy. "See we allow dissent" you say as you don't actually allow that dissent to do anything. Espionage does not offer legitimacy in that way. Or any way. A government is not more legitimate because its opposed or supported by outside actors. But it is more legitimate if it allows internal dissent and that dissent is not enough to sway the majority to change.

    I am not sure how its hard to see its a reasonable position.

    .
    Julius wrote: »
    For the record, Putin does have popular support. While there was obvious voter fraud during the 2018 elections, Russian democracy is free enough that it didn't do more than make the win seem more overwhelming than it really was.

    A lot of Russians like Putin and what he has to say. And this should not in any way be a surprise to anyone, least of all Americans.

    The United States, while struggling, is generally still considered a democracy. The Russian Federation is not.

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  • PreacherPreacher Registered User regular
    There are reports that Trump had previously reached out to McMaster who he fired as his nat sec adviser to say he misses him. I just can't even.

    I would like some money because these are artisanal nuggets of wisdom philistine.

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  • reVersereVerse Registered User regular
    Goumindong wrote: »
    The United States, while struggling, is generally still considered a democracy.

    By Americans.

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  • rahkeesh2000rahkeesh2000 Registered User regular
    We'd have a competent president if it wasn't.

    EncFencingsax
  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    reVerse wrote: »
    Goumindong wrote: »
    The United States, while struggling, is generally still considered a democracy.

    By Americans.

    And by the definition of the word, when it is used casually. We've always been a constitutional republic, the level of democracy that goes into our representation shifts slightly with the era, but we are still far more democratic than we were fifty years ago, or even thirty years ago.

  • ArbitraryDescriptorArbitraryDescriptor Registered User regular
    Julius wrote: »
    Gaddez wrote: »
    An argument could be made that russians opposing putin are patriots due to the fact that Putin cares less about actual russia (a country with a weak economy, declining population, limited free speech and ethnocentric issues) then he does fantasy russia (A russia where everyone supports him, is the pre-eminent world power, and he routinely travels about on horseback shirtless) and taking him down is better for the nation as a whole.

    There is a difference between opposing Putin Obama and spying for the US Russian government.

    For example ^

    Julius
  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Goumindong wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    Putin doing a bit of voter fraud is undemocractic. Republicans literally rigging the system from the ground up so they gain majorities in legislatures despite minority support is totally democratic.


    Though I suppose that an argument could be made that due to Republicans not caring about the US, real patriots should work with foreign governments to overthrow them.

    No. Its totally undemocratic. But we aren't quite at the point where there is a President for life. Obama did indeed win in 2008 and was President until 3 years ago. Putin has been in power in Russia since 2000.

    You might as well say he has been in power since 1999 since not being President clearly doesn't count for you.

    Lifetime presidential term limits are not a defining characteristic of democracy, and it is silly and incredibly America-centric to suggest they are. It is also bizarre to simultaneously suggest that being President doesn't really matter because Putin was still in power when he wasn't President.

    Putin isn't president for life nor a dictator. He is the de facto leader of the dominant party in a dominant-party state. Long leadership of a political party isn't undemocratic, though a bit rare. But then again Putin is the direct successor to Yeltsin. There isn't any precedence for how things go in Russia.

    YamiB.
  • Commander ZoomCommander Zoom Registered User regular
    Julius wrote: »
    Goumindong wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    Putin doing a bit of voter fraud is undemocractic. Republicans literally rigging the system from the ground up so they gain majorities in legislatures despite minority support is totally democratic.


    Though I suppose that an argument could be made that due to Republicans not caring about the US, real patriots should work with foreign governments to overthrow them.

    No. Its totally undemocratic. But we aren't quite at the point where there is a President for life. Obama did indeed win in 2008 and was President until 3 years ago. Putin has been in power in Russia since 2000.

    You might as well say he has been in power since 1999 since not being President clearly doesn't count for you.

    Lifetime presidential term limits are not a defining characteristic of democracy, and it is silly and incredibly America-centric to suggest they are. It is also bizarre to simultaneously suggest that being President doesn't really matter because Putin was still in power when he wasn't President.

    Putin isn't president for life nor a dictator. He is the de facto leader of the dominant party in a dominant-party state. Long leadership of a political party isn't undemocratic, though a bit rare. But then again Putin is the direct successor to Yeltsin. There isn't any precedence for how things go in Russia.

    The Tsars? :/

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    Julius
  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Goumindong wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    For the record, Putin does have popular support. While there was obvious voter fraud during the 2018 elections, Russian democracy is free enough that it didn't do more than make the win seem more overwhelming than it really was.

    A lot of Russians like Putin and what he has to say. And this should not in any way be a surprise to anyone, least of all Americans.

    The United States, while struggling, is generally still considered a democracy. The Russian Federation is not.

    Well sure all the western democracy indices don't consider it one because of all the repression, but it still functions as one and holds elections that are decently led and in which the outcome mostly resembles opinion. They don't hold sham elections or plain don't have them like some countries.

    Which is besides the point because the issue was popular support. Putin is popular, even while election results paint him as more popular than he is. Any foreign policy or analysis working on the assumption that he isn't is going to fail.

    NSDFRand
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited September 10
    reVerse wrote: »
    Goumindong wrote: »
    The United States, while struggling, is generally still considered a democracy.

    By Americans.

    No, by people who aren't Americans too. Its the general consensus of political scientists even.
    Julius wrote: »
    Goumindong wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    Putin doing a bit of voter fraud is undemocractic. Republicans literally rigging the system from the ground up so they gain majorities in legislatures despite minority support is totally democratic.


    Though I suppose that an argument could be made that due to Republicans not caring about the US, real patriots should work with foreign governments to overthrow them.

    No. Its totally undemocratic. But we aren't quite at the point where there is a President for life. Obama did indeed win in 2008 and was President until 3 years ago. Putin has been in power in Russia since 2000.

    You might as well say he has been in power since 1999 since not being President clearly doesn't count for you.

    Lifetime presidential term limits are not a defining characteristic of democracy, and it is silly and incredibly America-centric to suggest they are. It is also bizarre to simultaneously suggest that being President doesn't really matter because Putin was still in power when he wasn't President.

    Putin isn't president for life nor a dictator. He is the de facto leader of the dominant party in a dominant-party state. Long leadership of a political party isn't undemocratic, though a bit rare. But then again Putin is the direct successor to Yeltsin. There isn't any precedence for how things go in Russia.

    Putin was not just "not in power". He was Prime Minister with the president being effectively appointed by him. No matter how you slice it, even if give it the most generous reading and suggest that his ministerial position was legitimate and normal, he was very much in power.

    Putin is most definitely a dictator. You really believe is he going to go retire in 2024 and not be involved in the Russian State? Uh huh. Sure.

    Goumindong on
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  • nexuscrawlernexuscrawler Registered User regular
    Putin is essentially president for life if he wants. He controls and outright murder his opposition. He controls the media and he controls the elections.

    He’s popular sure but let’s not pretend that’s why he’s still in power

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  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Enc wrote: »
    reVerse wrote: »
    Goumindong wrote: »
    The United States, while struggling, is generally still considered a democracy.

    By Americans.

    And by the definition of the word, when it is used casually. We've always been a constitutional republic, the level of democracy that goes into our representation shifts slightly with the era, but we are still far more democratic than we were fifty years ago, or even thirty years ago.

    Which obviously applies to Russia too.

    Enc
  • ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    I don’t rule out of hand that someone could be a patriot and a spy, theoretically. But this argument seems to be running far ahead of the actual person, about which we know virtually nothing. Reading that article about him, I have yet to find a reason to ascribe any kind of political or other reason for his spy work. We just know that he’s a spy, and that’s about it.

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  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    Julius wrote: »
    Goumindong wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    For the record, Putin does have popular support. While there was obvious voter fraud during the 2018 elections, Russian democracy is free enough that it didn't do more than make the win seem more overwhelming than it really was.

    A lot of Russians like Putin and what he has to say. And this should not in any way be a surprise to anyone, least of all Americans.

    The United States, while struggling, is generally still considered a democracy. The Russian Federation is not.

    Well sure all the western democracy indices don't consider it one because of all the repression, but it still functions as one and holds elections that are decently led and in which the outcome mostly resembles opinion. They don't hold sham elections or plain don't have them like some countries.

    Which is besides the point because the issue was popular support. Putin is popular, even while election results paint him as more popular than he is. Any foreign policy or analysis working on the assumption that he isn't is going to fail.

    How many of his electoral opponents wind up in the dock or in the morgue again? An election that isn't allowed to have an actual opposition is a sham election.

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  • HevachHevach Registered User regular
    edited September 10
    moniker wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    Goumindong wrote: »
    Julius wrote: »
    For the record, Putin does have popular support. While there was obvious voter fraud during the 2018 elections, Russian democracy is free enough that it didn't do more than make the win seem more overwhelming than it really was.

    A lot of Russians like Putin and what he has to say. And this should not in any way be a surprise to anyone, least of all Americans.

    The United States, while struggling, is generally still considered a democracy. The Russian Federation is not.

    Well sure all the western democracy indices don't consider it one because of all the repression, but it still functions as one and holds elections that are decently led and in which the outcome mostly resembles opinion. They don't hold sham elections or plain don't have them like some countries.

    Which is besides the point because the issue was popular support. Putin is popular, even while election results paint him as more popular than he is. Any foreign policy or analysis working on the assumption that he isn't is going to fail.

    How many of his electoral opponents wind up in the dock or in the morgue again? An election that isn't allowed to have an actual opposition is a sham election.

    An election with in which Putin gets 95% of the vote while literal riots are put down protesting the outcome of the vote was not actually an election*. The ballot box is a paper shredder.

    I do believe the claim that Putin has popular support, but the support reflected by official election numbers are mathematically dubious. A higher percentage of votes in a real election would be cast against him by accident.


    *-Nationally Putin has hovered around 80% of the official count, winning every part of the country, but if you look at the maps, the distribution of his support is inverse to what you'd expect: The strongholds of his support ranged as low as 60%, typical solid red/blue state territory really. In places with open opposition and open support for opposition parties, Putin generally finished in the high 70's to 80's. And both participation *and* Putin's share approached 100% in areas with actual secession movements.

    Hevach on
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  • ButtersButters A glass of some milks Registered User regular
    I believe that if Putin really was all that popular he wouldn't feel the need to kill or imprison every public figure that poses a credible threat to his power. Russians have a high tolerance for corruption and strongman horseshit but that doesn't mean we should trust the approval ratings of a leader in a country with zero independent media outlets.

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  • CoinageCoinage The Naming of Cats is a difficult matter Registered User regular
    Butters wrote: »
    I believe that if Putin really was all that popular he wouldn't feel the need to kill or imprison every public figure that poses a credible threat to his power. Russians have a high tolerance for corruption and strongman horseshit but that doesn't mean we should trust the approval ratings of a leader in a country with zero independent media outlets.
    Maybe he doesn't feel the need to, he just likes to.

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  • Commander ZoomCommander Zoom Registered User regular
    he's old-school KGB, it's what he knows.

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  • AbsalonAbsalon Registered User regular
    Trump could rip apart every thread of the post-ww II geopolitical status quo that Bolton et al worship and they would still keep mum because at the end of the day he is a republican president and the republican party must not be inconvenienced.

    As much as I loathe Trump to a degree that can't be expressed on this forum, and despise holier-than-thou "anti-NWO" leftists like Michael Tracey and Glenn Greenwald, it is heartening to imagine the despair and terror of the same suited cabal that enginereed the replacement of Sukarno with Suharto and never so much as blinked when they heard what the latter did, and so much more in the same vein.

  • ZibblsnrtZibblsnrt Registered User regular
    edited September 10
    Julius wrote: »
    Putin isn't president for life nor a dictator. He is the de facto leader of the dominant party in a dominant-party state. Long leadership of a political party isn't undemocratic, though a bit rare.

    Oh come entirely the fuck on.

    The man rigs elections with a level of overtness Republicans outside of Georgia could only dream of, more or less personally determines which parties, candidates and activist organizations are allowed to exist in the public sphere, is centralizing all telecommunications in the country through state-run apparatus with an eye to controlling what's seen and heard in the private sphere as well, and regularly has critics in the media and among what's left of opposition political parties murdered. The last of those is often reported in the aforementioned media as winking, whatcha-gonna-do-about-it jokes.

    We are not in any way, shape or form talking about somebody who's been in office for awhile only due to his being popular (unless you count the fact that that's a common result of being the only contender for the top offices who's allowed to have access to the spotlight for a decade or more).

    The fact that he hasn't actually busted out the explicit phrase "president for life" doesn't change the fact that he is one, including playing constitutional games as necessary to stay in charge of things and talking openly about doing more of that going forward. Assuming he's not somehow deposed, he is absolutely going to die in office.

    (Indeed, typical of people who consolidate and hold onto power the way he has, he can't afford not to die in office. Tyrants who retire generally don't have a good time of it in their successors' house-cleanings.)

    Zibblsnrt on
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  • HonkHonk Honk is this poster. Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    Putin was prime minister literally because it was a necessary step while changing the law so that he could have more terms as president.

    Putin is a dictator end of story.

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