Friday, August 25, 2006

Daniel McAdams on Belorus

Imagine you are in Lafayette Park, across from the White House, setting up tents and loudspeakers without a permit to occupy the park with a group of several thousand protesters, guzzling beer and vodka. How long do you think it would be before the Secret Service or other uniformed local and federal officers moved in to disburse you? Five minutes?

Yet when less than one percent of the 500,000 Belarusians who voted for the political opposition were recently disbursed from October Square, one block from the presidential residence, the United States and the European Union (where member country France had been engaged in brutally beating youth protesting for more job security) announced a new round of sanctions against the country.

Aside from this absurd double standard is the fact that democracy itself is subverted in this new, revolutionary method of changing governments – all in the name of democracy, of course. Somehow in the new world of color-coded revolutions, a public display of only one percent of those who voted for the opposition – not of all voters, mind you, but just of those who voted for the opposition – is enough for the West to conclude that they represent the true will of the people. It is a new Bolshevism of the West in which a tiny minority is said to in fact be the majority. The media plays into this deception, with its breathless but highly selective reporting of such incidents. The Western media makes no effort to gain actual facts, preferring to rely on salacious but unverified tales of beatings and mass arrests made available in copious quantities by those who stand to benefit most by their dissemination.

Before going into the reasons for Alexander Lukashenko's victory, I should add a word on the outrageous lies told by the Western press before, during, and after the presidential elections in Belarus. How do I know? I was there. I was there standing in October Square on Wednesday afternoon watching the 150 or so protesters while the BBC reported "thousands." I took pictures of the beer bottles and coffee cups that littered the square as the foreign media reported that the police were not allowing any food or drink to the protesters.
On Wednesday, the Frankfurter Allgemeine reported that "they flew flags of denim" when there was not a single denim flag on the square. There were plenty of Georgian flags, however, which is strange considering the abysmal state of the "reformed" Georgian economy, where electricity and water are about as available as in Iraq. Lukashenko entered his press conference "drunk with victory," the German paper reported. I saw no such thing, but rather a politician who is not afraid to shoot back rhetorically at attacks from the U.S. administration. Accused by President Bush of selling weapons to other countries, Lukashenko retorted, "Coming from a man who has profited so much from war and oil, it is an accusation that doesn't deserve a response."

Heavy police presence, the press reported. We saw far fewer police than you would have seen at any gathering in the U.S. or any Western capitol. In fact, before authorities finally moved yesterday to disburse the makeshift tent city from the square, there was hardly a police officer to be seen. The list goes on.

Read more...

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

That's funny. I have some friends in Ukraine and they were telling me the same thing about Yushchenko's "Orange Revolution"

They were there when all the "protests/rallys" were going on, but they told a completely different story from what the US media was reporting. Here, they showed a huge crowd of people wearing orange in support of Yushchenko.

What they said was that "Americans" set up tents and were giving out free scarves, hats, gloves, shirts and other orange items. People weren't taking them to show support, but because they were FREE, and Ukraine isn't exactly the richest country in the world. On top of the free swag, there was free food and drinks. Now, anyone from any of the old Soviet Union knows that free food will draw a crowd of thousands anywhere. Again, people don't have money like that out there. So, they were just there for the free stuff, and weren't neccesarily supporters - but that's not how they made it look.

The Ranger said...

Say what ? I was there in Set 2004 for the elections. I was there in Nov 2004 for the elections. I went back in Mar 2006 for the elections. I saw the tents. I saw the Ukraine people handing out orange scarves, hats and what you call swag. What I did not see was a lot of Americans giving out anything.
Were Americans there? Yes. Were they handing out swag and free food. Not that I could see and I see pretty good. I hear very well and did not hear very much English being spoken. Were there American Media tents there? Yes. And most of the speaking was Ukrainian and Russian. I was there with my Ukrainian wife and Ukrainian children, oh they do speak English as well as Ukrainian, Russian and now that we are in the US they are learning Spanish as well.
Give the Ukrainian people the credit they deserve. As we say in the southern part of the USA, They done good.

La Russophobe said...

OK children, do you understand it all now?

America, the WHOLE of Europe and every human rights organization you can think of, together with dozens of blogs from people who live there, say Alexander Lukashenko is a maniacal dictator, but KONSTANTIN says he's not, but rather just a reasonable person trying to do a hard day's work.

And KONSTANTIN is right, and the WHOLE WORLD is wrong.

Well, not merely wrong, but they are a bunch of stupid morons, whereas KONSTANTIN is the only person with "real" intelligence on the face of the earth.

What's more, there is NO DIFFERENCE between the form of government in the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA and the form in Belarus.

Well, there might be a bit of difference, in that Belarus is apparently more of a democracy than America is. After all, we all know that John Kerry was publicly hanged after daring to contest George Bush, whereas the Belarus opposition is merely in prison.

Konstantin is a card-carrying sociopath and a perfect explanation of why and how maniacs like Lukashenko come to and stay in power, because folks like Konstantin support it.

Anonymous said...

What do you think the WHOLE WORLD thinks of G.W.?

Anonymous said...

Bigger PR budget.

La Russophobe said...

The WHOLE WORLD obviously thinks Bush is much worse than Lukashenko, that is why America is facing a massive set of economic sanctions while Belarus is the proud partner of so many nations.

It is also why immigrants are flocking to Belarus by the millions while nobody at all wants to live in America.

Anonymous said...

I hate to even respond to anything LR says, as it's humiliating to be sucked in by a troll... but this post was not, in fact, written by Konstantin. The title says it all (to me, anyway, because I learned to read at an early age...): "Daniel McAdams on Belorus"

Konstantin obviously agrees with it, or he wouldn't have put it up here, but he didn't write it.

By the way, there was a typo in the original post that cracked me up when I read it - "disbursed" instead of "dispersed". "Paid", not "scattered".

La Russophobe said...

I didn't say he wrote it, you pathetic troll. If you're going to resort to crass personal abuse, at least you could get your facts right.

What's more, if you think it's clear who did write it, you must be more drunk than Konstantin. The post is typically irresponsible, unsourced dreck no matter who wrote it.

sashal said...

The WHOLE WORLD obviously thinks Bush is much worse than Lukashenko, that is why America is facing a massive set of economic sanctions while Belarus is the proud partner of so many nations.

It is also why immigrants are flocking to Belarus by the millions while nobody at all wants to live in America.


LR you are so correct, the only thing is missing -Belaruss has no such military and economic powers as USA, otherwise you would have been 100% on the money

coen van zwol said...

I respect your opinion normally, Konstantin, but this is a pretty stupid piece of crap. I covered the Minsk election too. i didn't think the opposition had any honest chance, nor even believe they had.
I do remember the bland look on the face of Milunitovic (was he drunk?) Sundaynight, when there were in fact 1000-1500 people. the opposition didn't even have a bullhorn to speak to them. I saw the energy dwindle away in the days after, I saw the police in action, arresting a bit and beating somewhat, and had some quite funny conversations with the tough guys themselves. Luka played his cards right - he waited untill we moved on to Ukrain - to see a real democracy in action - before he shoveled away the remains.

I understand somewhat your sympathy for Lukashenko. Your beloved Russia is a corrupt, oligarchic kleptocracy led by a KGB-Godfather.Compared to the Kremlins utter contempt for their own citizens, I might even have a warm spot for Lukashenko, who runs his country like a kolchoze. (We have potatoes and at least there's no war, so why complain?)
Point is. Luka might have won fair en square, maybe even would if it had been a honest election. But we'll never know. There was nothing fair about the media in the run-up. there was nothing fair about the mass arrests of opposition figures, there is nothing fair about the opposition politicians behind bars now, there is nothing fair about a president forbidding meetings whenever it suits him and threatening the young opposition 'to wring their necks like ducklings.'
I agree it wasn't that dramatic too/. In my 7 years on the Russian beat I've seen a lot of things, but not honest elections. This election was no worse than, for instance, the recent one in Baku, but certainly not better.
Remember, Konstantin, how on election night they first gave Luka 82 percent, and one hour later 72 percent? Guess somebody decided to keep it humble, but of course one pct more that Putin, just for fun. I do believe the votes were counted; the dupes at the polling station tend to believe in democracy. I don't think they these votes registered on any normal way.
Well, accept Luka if you want; it only means you're a Slav with a slave soul. I'm cynical enough to agree that every people gets the government it deserves. If you are a nation of Slaves, you will have your Master. He'll always give you your bag of potatoes in winter. You'll feel quite safe.
Last point: Central-Europe is doing fine, relatively. Compared to Belarus that is. Somehow when I cross the border by train it's always dirtpoort Belorussians trying to smuggle their stuff to the EU, not the other way around, The weirdest thing! How come?

Anonymous said...

Check out this clip of a russian mobster that wants to be on The Apprentice. LOL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=azeXwYOxGhc

Anonymous said...

So Coen, what nationality are you?

Konstantin didn't write the above article.

Russians don't live as slaves. Are you saying that Russians don't in majority support Putin? And in Central Europe people are not that good of. There are many, I repeat many, who would have Belorussian system in their countries right away. Not that I am one of them. But just you go and look at the success of all reformed communist parties.

You know why I asked you the first question? Because like La Russophobe, from your few words, I sense you have some almost rasistic impulse in you.

Like this: 'Your beloved Russia is a corrupt, oligarchic kleptocracy led by a KGB-Godfather'

Did you want to insult someone? :)

coen van zwol said...

Of course you support Putin, he's your Master! You feel soo ... soo very safe nowadays... How could you live without him? Just the thought of being without your Masta is scary ...
And, anonymous, what's so shocking about racism? Russia is the current world champion in racism! Skinheads all over the world applaud the Holy Motherland nowadays!
Just this one little funny misunderstanding: these Russki fascists seem to believe nowadays that Adolf Hitler considered Slavs to be some sort of Aryans. Hitler thought otherwise: he thought Slavs were slaves. And since 1945, you never took the opportunity to prove him wrong.

Pietari said...

coen van KOZEL,

you covered the election, prick? Than I'll find you.
Await piece of shit.

coen van zwol said...

Temper, temper, on crack again, Pietari? Behave!

La Russophobe said...

This is really quite something. Somebody called ANONYMOUS is asking COEN what his nationality is and concerned that HE might be a racist! What a hoot!

Not only is anonymous the world's biggest hypocrite, he's the world's biggest moron. He doesn't understand the difference betweeen "race" and nationality" because, for him, there is no difference. The terms "Slavic" and "Russian" are the same, and he thinks it's anyone who disagrees that is the racist.

He asks "Are you saying that Russians don't in majority support Putin?" Another howler! Germans supported Hitler when he went through Russia like a hot knife through butter. Does that make Hitler fine and dandy?

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