US Proxy War: The constant battle to keep things out of the memory hole Nuland-Pyatt Video Restored to YouTube

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US proxy war

People have the right to be informed and in no way does the information within this article detract away from Ukraine’s right to defend itself from Russian aggression, nor does it undermine the people’s right to self-determination and protection from Ukraine’s military and government who have been waging a civil war for over eight years in the breakaway regions of Donetsk and Luhansk’s. A war zone the international community has constantly and conveniently ignored.

However, again we find the war of propaganda is constantly being waged. Censorship and the takedown of information on the internet seem to be the norm. The ‘memory hole’ is in full swing, it conveniently makes information that helps people get a better perspective of the history behind the Ukrainian conflict disappear.

A video of a leaked conversation between ‘Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland,’ a former U.S. ambassador to NATO and State Department spokeswoman, talking to the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, was removed from YouTube, but now has been restored.

Although during her three-decade-long career as a US Foreign Service officer Victoria Nuland has done many things, mostly in the shadows, unfortunately for her she was projected into the headlines, to become a household name in US foreign policy.

In the video, the two discuss changing the Ukrainian government weeks before the democratically-elected President Viktor Yanukovych was violently driven from power.

The video, posted on April 29, 2014, had 181,533 views before it was taken down on Wednesday, and was among the most viewed versions of the conversation on YouTube. Eight years’ worth of viewer comments on the video had also been removed.

The bugged phone conversation in which the pair disparages the EU over the Ukraine crisis was posted online. The conversation between Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland and the US Ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, appeared on YouTube in 2014.

It came after Nuland arrived in Ukraine for talks in early February 2014, two weeks later a coup took place. It was also widely viewed on a Russian-language Web site, where it appeared online along with a photo montage of Nuland, Pyatt, and opposition figures. The Russian caption reads, “Puppets of the Maidan,” the colloquial name for Kiev’s Independence Square.

The background and implications of the 2014 far-right coup in Kiev, which overthrew the pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych, is critical for understanding the current Ukraine-Russia war. This coup was openly supported by the US and the European Union, implemented primarily by far-right shock troops such as the Right Sector and the neo-Nazi Svoboda Party.

It represented the temporary culmination of long-standing efforts by US imperialism to install a puppet regime on the borders of Russia and brought the world a major step closer to a war between the largest nuclear powers, the US and Russia. Ukraine has since been systematically built up as a launching pad for a NATO war against Russia.

Donbass civil war Mariupol 2014

The regime change prompted the outbreak of an ongoing civil war in the east of Ukraine, between Russian-backed separatists and the US-backed Ukrainian army, that has claimed the lives of tens of thousands and displaced millions.

In the US, the coup was a catalyst for an even more aggressive campaign against Russia. Joe Biden’s aim was to use Ukraine to extend both Nato and the US empire.

The hacked recording of that phone call sealed the otherwise discreet diplomat’s place in history. In the recording, Nuland’s voice can be heard giving Pyatt orders about who the United States had selected to be Ukraine’s new prime minister. Countering Pyatt’s suggestion of the popular former boxer, Vitali Klitschko, Nuland selected Arseniy Yatsenyuk.

After the pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych fled the country and Yatsenyuk struggled to lead a new government, an anti-Russian billionaire, Petro Poroshenko, won the presidency in September 2014. He immediately appealed to the Obama administration for military assistance to counter Russia, but President Obama kept him at bay, reasoning that “Ukraine is a core interest for Moscow, in a way that it is not for the United States.”

In other words, not only did the CIA work to overthrow the elected president, Yanukovych, but Nuland managed to manipulate Ukrainian politics from within and thus contribute to what was to evolve into a notoriously corrupt regime under Poroshenko.

At the same time, her commander-in-chief, Barack Obama, chose to limit the US involvement in Ukraine by defining a prudent arm’s length relationship with the fiasco that was unfolding, even after Russia seized Crimea from the Ukrainians.

The US were overactive in Ukraine from 2014 onwards.

Official portrait of President Obama and Vice President Biden 2012
By Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy – http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/cabinet, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=21990205

When Russia invaded Crimea in early 2014, Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. pressed Barack Obama to take decisive action, and fast, to make Moscow “pay in blood and money” for its aggression. The president, a Biden aide recalled, was having none of it.

Biden worked on Obama during their weekly private lunches, imploring him to increase lethal aid, backing a push to ship FGM-148 Javelin anti-tank missiles to Kiev. The president flatly rejected the idea and dispatched him to the region as an emissary, cautioning him “about not overpromising to the Ukrainian government,” Biden would later write in a memoir.

So, Biden threw himself into what seemed like standard-issue vice-presidential stuff: prodding Ukraine’s leaders to tackle the rampant corruption that made their country a risky bet for international lenders — and pushing reform of Ukraine’s cronyism-ridden energy industry.

“You have to be whiter than snow, or the whole world will abandon you,” Biden told the country’s newly elected president, Petro O. Poroshenko, during an early 2014 phone call, according to former administration officials.

That message was delivered just as Biden’s son Hunter joined the board of a Ukrainian gas company that was the subject of multiple corruption investigations, a position that paid him as much as $50,000 a month and — in the view of some administration officials, including the ambassador to Kiev — threatened to undermine Biden’s agenda.

We are all still waiting for the secrets of Hunter Biden’s laptop to be revealed.

Of course, we all know how much Gas is playing a part in this conflict. We all know about Hunter Biden’s connection to Ukrainian Gas. we all know the US has become the biggest exporter in the world of LNG Gas and many of us know of Joe Biden’s connection to the Largest LNG Gas company in the US with his good friend the co-founder of Western LNG Andrew Goldman, also one of Biden former political advisers.

As the former vice president Biden visited Ukraine six times and spent hours on the phone with the country’s leaders.

Biden dived into Ukraine in hopes of burnishing his statesman credentials. Writing in his 2017 memoir, Biden said Ukraine gave him a chance to fulfil a childhood promise to make a difference in the world. It also came to serve a political purpose, as “a legacy project, something he could run on,” said Keith Darden, an associate professor at American University who studies Ukraine policy.

That legacy seems to be world domination, an age for a new America.

In 2014  Senator John McCain told demonstrators “America is with you,” then, standing shoulder to shoulder with the leader of the far-right Svoboda party as the US ambassador haggled with the state department over who would make up the new Ukrainian government.

John McCain in Kiev
Senator John McCain, center, greets well-wishers in Independence Square in Kiev. Photograph: Sergei Chuzavkov/AP Photograph: Sergei Chuzavkov/AP

When the Ukrainian president was replaced by a US-selected administration, in an entirely unconstitutional takeover, politicians such as William Hague brazenly misled parliament about the legality of what had taken place: the imposition of a pro-western government on Russia’s most neuralgic and politically divided neighbour.

It was all pre-planned, yet another US regime change, another action carried out in the continuation of the Forever wars.

Nuland apologised for her comments about the European Union that were — to put it lightly — undiplomatic.

“F— the E.U.,” Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland said in a private telephone call that was intercepted and leaked online.

That was the shocker the media went with, they pretend the rest of the conversation was chatter. Nuland was dismissively claiming she was referring to slow-moving European efforts to address political paralysis and a looming fiscal crisis in Ukraine. But it was the blunt nature of her remarks, along with the U.S. diplomatic calculations, that seemed exceptional.

Nuland also assessed the political skills of Ukrainian opposition figures with unusual candour and, along with the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, debated strategy for their cause, laying bare a deep degree of U.S. involvement in affairs that Washington officially says are Ukraine’s to resolve.

At the end of the Nuland-Pyatt video, Lindsey Graham & John McCain tell Ukrainine soldiers they will supply them and that the US will be with them all the way, that was 2016.

Here is a transcript, with analysis by BBC diplomatic correspondent Jonathan Marcus:

Warning: This transcript contains swearing.

  • Jonathan Marcus: At the outset it should be clear that this is a fragment of what may well be a larger phone conversation. But the US has not denied its veracity and has been quick to point a finger at the Russian authorities for being behind its interception and leak.

Voice thought to be Pyatt’s: I think we’re in play. The Klitschko [Vitaly Klitschko, one of three main opposition leaders] piece is obviously the complicated electron here. Especially the announcement of him as deputy prime minister and you’ve seen some of my notes on the troubles in the marriage right now so we’re trying to get a read really fast on where he is on this stuff. But I think your argument to him, which you’ll need to make, I think that’s the next phone call you want to set up, is exactly the one you made to Yats [Arseniy Yatseniuk, another opposition leader]. And I’m glad you sort of put him on the spot on where he fits in this scenario. And I’m very glad that he said what he said in response.

  • Jonathan Marcus: The US says that it is working with all sides in the crisis to reach a peaceful solution, noting that “ultimately it is up to the Ukrainian people to decide their future”. However this transcript suggests that the US has very clear ideas about what the outcome should be and is striving to achieve these goals. Russian spokesmen have insisted that the US is meddling in Ukraine’s affairs – no more than Moscow, the cynic might say – but Washington clearly has its own game-plan. The clear purpose in leaking this conversation is to embarrass Washington and for audiences susceptible to Moscow’s message to portray the US as interfering in Ukraine’s domestic affairs.

Nuland: Good. I don’t think Klitsch should go into the government. I don’t think it’s necessary, I don’t think it’s a good idea.

Pyatt: Yeah. I guess… in terms of him not going into the government, just let him stay out and do his political homework and stuff. I’m just thinking in terms of sort of the process moving ahead we want to keep the moderate democrats together. The problem is going to be Tyahnybok [Oleh Tyahnybok, the other opposition leader] and his guys and I’m sure that’s part of what [President Viktor] Yanukovych is calculating on all this.

Nuland: [Breaks in] I think Yats is the guy who’s got the economic experience, the governing experience. He’s the… what he needs is Klitsch and Tyahnybok on the outside. He needs to be talking to them four times a week, you know. I just think Klitsch going in… he’s going to be at that level working for Yatseniuk, it’s just not going to work.

Pyatt: Yeah, no, I think that’s right. OK. Good. Do you want us to set up a call with him as the next step?

Nuland: My understanding from that call – but you tell me – was that the big three were going into their own meeting and that Yats was going to offer in that context a… three-plus-one conversation or three-plus-two with you. Is that not how you understood it?

Pyatt: No. I think… I mean that’s what he proposed but I think, just knowing the dynamic that’s been with them where Klitschko has been the top dog, he’s going to take a while to show up for whatever meeting they’ve got and he’s probably talking to his guys at this point, so I think you reaching out directly to him helps with the personality management among the three and it gives you also a chance to move fast on all this stuff and put us behind it before they all sit down and he explains why he doesn’t like it.

Nuland: OK, good. I’m happy. Why don’t you reach out to him and see if he wants to talk before or after.

Pyatt: OK, will do. Thanks.

Nuland: OK… one more wrinkle for you Geoff. [A click can be heard] I can’t remember if I told you this, or if I only told Washington this, that when I talked to Jeff Feltman [United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs] this morning, he had a new name for the UN guy Robert Serry did I write you that this morning?

  • Jonathan Marcus: An intriguing insight into the foreign policy process with work going on at a number of levels: Various officials attempting to marshal the Ukrainian opposition; efforts to get the UN to play an active role in bolstering a deal; and (as you can see below) the big guns waiting in the wings – US Vice-President Joe Biden clearly being lined up to give private words of encouragement at the appropriate moment.

Pyatt: Yeah I saw that.

Nuland: OK. He’s now gotten both Serry and [UN Secretary General] Ban Ki-moon to agree that Serry could come in Monday or Tuesday. So that would be great, I think, to help glue this thing and to have the UN help glue it and, you know, Fuck the EU.

  • Jonathan Marcus: Not for the first time in an international crisis, the US expresses frustration at the EU’s efforts. Washington and Brussels have not been completely in step during the Ukraine crisis. The EU is divided and to some extent hesitant about picking a fight with Moscow. It certainly cannot win a short-term battle for Ukraine’s affections with Moscow – it just does not have the cash inducements available. The EU has sought to play a longer game; banking on its attraction over time. But the US clearly is determined to take a much more activist role.

Pyatt: No, exactly. And I think we’ve got to do something to make it stick together because you can be pretty sure that if it does start to gain altitude, that the Russians will be working behind the scenes to try to torpedo it. And again the fact that this is out there right now, I’m still trying to figure out in my mind why Yanukovych (garbled) that. In the meantime there’s a Party of Regions faction meeting going on right now and I’m sure there’s a lively argument going on in that group at this point. But anyway we could land jelly side up on this one if we move fast. So let me work on Klitschko and if you can just keep… we want to try to get somebody with an international personality to come out here and help to midwife this thing. The other issue is some kind of outreach to Yanukovych but we probably regroup on that tomorrow as we see how things start to fall into place.

Nuland: So on that piece Geoff, when I wrote the note [US vice-president’s national security adviser Jake] Sullivan’s come back to me VFR [direct to me], saying you need [US Vice-President Joe] Biden and I said probably tomorrow for an atta-boy and to get the deets [details] to stick. So Biden’s willing.

Pyatt: OK. Great. Thanks.

  • Jonathan Marcus: Overall this is a damaging episode between Washington and Moscow. Nobody really emerges with any credit. The US is clearly much more involved in trying to broker a deal in Ukraine than it publicly lets on. There is some embarrassment too for the Americans given the ease with which their communications were hacked. But is the interception and leaking of communications really the way Russia wants to conduct its foreign policy ? Goodness – after Wikileaks, Edward Snowden and the like could the Russian government be joining the radical apostles of open government? I doubt it. Though given some of the comments from Vladimir Putin’s adviser on Ukraine Sergei Glazyev – for example his interview with the Kommersant-Ukraine newspaper the other day – you don’t need your own listening station to be clear about Russia’s intentions. Russia he said “must interfere in Ukraine” and the authorities there should use force against the demonstrators.

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