First of all, Congratulations to our Russian friends on the 70th anniversary of Victory over Germany! Please review its significance by clicking http://9may.rt.com/
Alas, the USA and its NATO allies will be most conspicuous by their absence during the huge military parade in Moscow on May 9th. My friend and RAGA associate Martin Sieff explains in the Nation magazine why their absence is offensive to the Russians, as well as all nations of the former USSR who greatly contributed to the defeat of the Nazi Germany. He also deplores a great opportunity Western powers are missing to improve relations with Russia.
<<These spiteful and petty acts, enthusiastically embraced by American neoliberals and neoconservatives alike, can only further embitter Russians against the West. And the campaign is doomed to fail anyway. It will certainly not “isolate” Russia, which is playing host this weekend to powerful leaders from around the globe, including China, India, Brazil, and South Africa. More than one-third of the total population of the world will be represented at the events.>> Martin Sieff May 7, 2015
The Tree planting ceremony in Moscow to commemorate the meeting of Soviet and American troops on the Elbe River in April 1945 went just fine, receiving a good coverage in Russian media. I was unable to attend it, but all reports indicate it was a success of peoples diplomacy. Ed Lozansky, president of American University in Moscow, was pleasantly surprised that Andrew McLean, First Secretary of US Embassy, spoke at the event, while Victoria Nuland attended the Washington counterpart of the event. The highlights of the Moscow ceremony were when Russian General Aleksandr Adgamov spoke and then Raymond McGovern, a former high-ranking CIA official who used to brief President Ronald Reagan, read Nikolai Nekrasov's antiwar poem, and he did it in Russian!
Here is Ed's laconic email report:
<<I know you had Nuland at the Elbe ceremony in Washington (surprise, surprise) but we had US Embassy officials too in Moscow. What is going on?>>
The rest is in Russian
Missing good English? Read Ray McGovern's article "The West Snubs Russia over V-E Day"
<<Exclusive: Last year’s U.S.-backed coup in Ukraine – followed by violence and tensions – has soured plans for the May 9 commemoration in Moscow of World War II’s V-E Day, the Allied defeat of Nazi Germany, a war which cost the Russian people nearly 27 million dead, as ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern describes.>>
Watch Peter Lavelle's RT show in which Mary Dejevsky, John Lockland, and Ed Lozansky evaluate Vladimir Putin's 15 years at the top of Russian politics
Read also Alexander Mercouris, Tue, Apr 28, 2015, article in Russia Insider
<<As the Russian President looks forward to the fifteenth anniversary of his first election to office, we consider some of the factors that explain his extraordinary political success.>>
<<I have previously spoken of the danger of the unhealthy conflation of Putin with Russia that is so common in the West. Russia is more than Putin and Russia matters. Indeed it is one of the great powers of this world and the last 15 years have been a lesson proving that. Westerners who treated Russia as down and out and who now rage against Putin are basically angry because he and Russia have proved them wrong.>>
Tired of endless dead-end in US-Russia relations? Read Graham Allison and Dimitri K. Simes,
"Could a U.S. response to Russia’s actions in Ukraine provoke a confrontation that leads to a U.S.-Russian war?"April 20, 2015
<<Having managed a confrontation over the Soviet Union’s attempt to install nuclear-tipped missiles in Cuba that he believed had a one-in-three chance of ending in nuclear war, President John F. Kennedy spent many hours reflecting on the lessons from that experience. The most important of these he offered to his successors in these words: “Above all, while defending our vital interests, nuclear powers must avert those confrontations which bring an adversary to a choice of either a humiliating retreat or a nuclear war.” It is a lesson statesmen should apply to meet the challenge Russia poses in Ukraine today.>>
Tired of politics?
Calm yourself at the sights of Russia the eternal, thanks to Professor William Brumsfield's tireless endeavor to create a pictorial record of Russia which was on the brink of extinction in the USSR, but now is rising again. That's where Western politicians are crucially wrong: Putin is a former KGB officer, but he leads not a Marxist-Leninist ideological global power, but a new Russia that harks back to the spirituality of the old. Read the stories of Kozelsk and Optina Pustyn in Brumfield's words:
<<My current article for Russia beyond the Headlines is devoted to the town of Kozelsk, in Kaluga Province to the southwest of Moscow.http://rbth.com/travel/2015/05/01/kozelsk_a_town_resolute_in_defense_of_the_heartland_45669.html
Kozelsk is known for its legendary resistance to the Mongol forces of Batu Khan (grandson of Genghis Khan) in the spring of 1238. Kozelskalso played a role in the Battle of Moscow, a strategic Soviet victory at the end of 1941. Near the town is the large Optina Pustyn Monastery, subject of one of my recent articles in this series. http://rbth.com/travel/2014/10/03/optina_pustyn_spiritual_retreat_of_tolstoy_and_dostoevsky_40345.html For best results with the slide show (full screen), click the 4-arrow icon at lower right of photo window.
This is the 125th of my articles and photo essays on Russia's architectural and cultural heritage for the foreign-language service of the Russian national newspaper Rossiiskaia Gazeta. A unified link to the series can be found at: http://rbth.ru/discovering_russia Through this link a total of 3,686 photographs from my documentary work in Russia are now accessible.
RAGA mourns the death of the great Russian ballerina Maya Plisetskaya who did so much for bringing Russia to many an American home.
Malice to None. Good Will to All.
Peace and Justice to the World.
миру мир и благоволение в сердцах
From RAGA site:
"We are an association of Americans who believe it is in the U.S. national interests to foster friendship with Russia on the basis of mutual Good Will and non-interference in each other's affairs. RAGA is a gathering of people who share common interests in Russia's history, culture, religion, economy, politics and the way of life. We feel that Russian people have made outstanding contributions to humankind and are capable of greater achievements. We envision Russia as a strong, independent, proud and free nation and as a partner in achieving peace in the world."
W George Krasnow (=Vladislav Krasnov)
All statements in this report are an opinion of the author. Act at your own risk. Russia & America Goodwill Association (RAGA) is not responsible for the content of the article. Any views or opinions presented in this report are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RAGA. Any liability in respect to this communication remain with the author.