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For the “Kingdom”, al-Qaeda and others represent challenges to royal authority. In that too much takes place “behind the curtains” in the medieval states, it’s hard to defend the whole “family”, but certainly the official position has for some time been one of enmity toward the Brotherhood umbrella. Basically: we’re not at war with Saudi Arabia.

Another approach to the same matter would stem from my pet peeves with Soviet / post-Soviet political manipulation and Moscow’s history of encouragement for terrorism going back to the 1920s and forward to the grand old time had in the 1970s with the PFLP and so many others aligned or working with winks from the Soviet enterprise. Today, of course, Hezbollah is in Syria fighting on behalf of Moscow, Damascus, and Tehran; Hamas remains okey dokey as far as Mikhail Bogdanov is concerned, and as often noted in my tout for Back-Channels, ISIL itself may unwitting serve Moscow-Damascus-Tehran by having been less bombed and combated than western-associated rebel organizations and Syrian noncombatants throughout the earlier years of that civil war.

Given my take on Putin’s world, which is turning out fairly awful by humanist standards, much less western ones, Trump’s earlier relationship with Paul Manafort and what he has going today with Sergei Millian — http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/trump-suffers-bout-russian-amnesia/story?id=42325517 — should be as troubling to the public as Hillary Clinton’s taking of tribute in relation shepherding law and policy.

Things are never so simple as they may look, but the public may look twice — and needs to look twice — online to better comprehend true states of affairs.


The thing to really keep in mind on Trump vs Clinton | Moscow is Putin’s timing between the dissolving of the Soviet Union 25 years ago and his transforming the nascent democracy into a fascistic ultra-nationalist enterprise. Syria may be turning out one of those “hinges of history”, and the American position should be to lay to rest the barbarism and totalitarianism represented through Putin today in Syria and other phantoms associated with Soviet behavior.

Hypothesizing with a Crayon

When the Soviet dissolved, western businessmen and diplomats may have been quick to get in (early) and forgive.  The general lawlessness of the stateless state then quickly dampened that enthusiasm but not the hope for the development of a capitalist open democracy with a modern approach to law.  Blame Berezovsky — who would come to blame himself — but that’s not how things developed even though the thaw produced unprecedented cooperation in the Moscow-Washington relationship.

We are today in a different place, and Syria and Crimea may stand signal of exactly where that is in political time.

The response within the Awesome Conversation began with a rejection of official Saudi collusion in events leading to 9/11.

As the Kingdom regards itself as the truest authority on Islam and with that the imprimatur to rule by divine right, the Brotherhood organizations may be regarded primarily as challengers to the authority of the royals.  As noted, much may go on “behind the curtains” or just plain out of sight.

By far, in any case, Moscow has long developed the greater track record as regards support for terrorism on general principles, and, to this day, neutral to positive relations with Hamas, Hezbollah, and PFLP, if not others.

In reference below, the reader will find in Andrei Soldatov’s writing for Foreign Policy a recap of Putin’s most recent reconstruction of a KGB-like organization.  Add to Soldatov’s observations the demonstration of a merciless barbarism in Syria — long commented on by this blog — and an aggression, as unjustified as it has been plain sneaky, exhibited in Crimea.  Credit such handiwork to the “phantoms of the Soviet” brought back to life by none other than Putin.

Related Reference

Fox, Wesley.  “The new Russian MGB looks a lot like the KGB–coups included.”  American Enterprise Institute, October 4, 2016.

Since Peter the Great, Russia demonstrated a highly selective approach to utilizing the European experience in various fields. For more than three centuries Russian rulers from the Romanov’s dynasty to Politburo members, tried to borrow from Europe the needed technologies, experts and managerial models without importing European social and political practices. This approach produced mixed results: the Russian modernization trajectory had its historic highs and lows; it was constantly criticized from both liberal and conservative sides, but in most cases it reflected an attempt by the authorities to keep a delicate balance between the urgent economic needs and the commitment to a political and social status quo.

Kortunov, Andrey.  “Seven Phantoms of the Russia’s Policy Toward the European Union.”  Russian International Affairs Council, April 6, 2016.

The KGB, it should be remembered, was not a traditional security service in the Western sense — that is, an agency charged with protecting the interests of a country and its citizens. Its primary task was protecting the regime. Its activities included hunting down spies and dissidents and supervising media, sports, and even the church. It ran operations both inside and outside the country, but in both spheres the main task was always to protect the interests of whoever currently resided in the Kremlin. With this new agency, we’re seeing a return to form — one that’s been a long time in the making.

Soldatov, Andrei.  “Putin Has Finally Reincarnated the KGB.”  Foreign Policy, September 21, 2016.

Whitmore, Brian.  “Power Vertical Podcast: Putin’s Sword and Shield”.  RFE/RL, September 23, 2016.