Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Presidential Address to the Federal Assembly

The President of Russia delivered the Address to the Federal Assembly. The ceremony took place at the Manezh Central Exhibition Hall.
January 15, 2020
Before the Presidential Address to the Federal Assembly.

Before the Presidential Address to the Federal Assembly.
About 1,300 people have been invited to attend the ceremony, including members of the Federation Council, State Duma deputies, members of the Government, the heads of the Constitutional and Supreme courts, regional governors, speakers of regional legislatures, the heads of traditional religious denominations, public activists, the heads of regional civic chambers and the heads of major media outlets.
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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Members of the Federation Council, State Duma deputies, fellow Russians,
The Presidential Address to the Federal Assembly is delivered at the very beginning of the year for the first time. We need to address large-scale social, economic and technological tasks facing the country more quickly and without delay.
Their content and guidelines are reflected in the national projects, whose implementation will require a new quality of state governance and work on the part of the Government and state bodies at all levels, as well as direct dialogue with citizens.
Our society is clearly calling for change. People want development, and they strive to move forward in their careers and knowledge, in achieving prosperity, and they are ready to assume responsibility for specific work. Quite often, they have better knowledge of what, how and when should be changed where they live and work, that is, in cities, districts, villages and all across the nation.
The pace of change must be expedited every year and produce tangible results in attaining worthy living standards that would be clearly perceived by the people. And, I repeat, they must be actively involved in this process.
Russia’s future and historical perspective depend on how many of us there are (I would like to start the main part of my Address with demography), how many children are born in Russian families in one, five or ten years, on these children’s upbringing, on what kind of people they become and what they will do for the country, as well as on the values they choose as their mainstay in life.

LIVE: Putin delivers annual address to Federal Assembly

Monday, January 13, 2020

CIS informal summit

An informal CIS summit took place in St Petersburg.
December 20, 2019
St Petersburg
CIS informal summit.
CIS informal summit.
The summit was attended by Vladimir Putin, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan, President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, first President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev, President of Kyrgyzstan Sooronbay Jeenbekov, President of Moldova Igor Dodon, President of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon and President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.
Vladimir Putin told the participants about the archive materials on the pre-history of World War II and invited them to tour a specially organised exhibit.
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Speech at the informal CIS summit
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Colleagues, I am very happy to see you. I would like to welcome you once again, in this “very extended” format of CIS heads of state.
We have resolved on events dedicated to the end of the Great Patriotic War between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany and the Victory of the Soviet Union.
Let me stress that for all of us, and I know you agree, it is a special date because our fathers and grandfathers sacrificed a lot to our Fatherland, our common Fatherland back then. In fact, every family in the former Soviet Union in one way or another suffered from what happened with our country and the world.
We have discussed this many times both formally and informally and decided to work together on the eve of the 75th anniversary. I would like to share some of my thoughts on this.

Sunday, January 5, 2020

A MUST READ -- Putin’s Hour Is At Hand

Putin’s Hour Is At Hand
Paul Craig Roberts
Vladimir Putin is the most impressive leader on the world stage.  He survived and arose from a Russia corrupted by Washington and Israel during the Yeltsin years and reestablished Russia as a world power.  He dealt successfully with American/Israeli aggression against South Ossetia and against Ukraine, incorporating at Crimea’s request the Russian province back into Mother Russia.  He has tolerated endless insults and provocations from Washington and its empire without responding in kind.  He is conciliatory and a peacemaker from a position of strength.
He knows that the American empire based as it is on arrogance and lies is failing economically, socially, politically, and militarily.  He understands that war serves no Russian interest.  
Washington’s murder of Qasem Soleimani, a great Iranian leader, indeed, one of the rare leaders in world history, has dimmed Trump’s leadership and placed the limelight on Putin. The stage is set for Putin and Russia to assume the leadership of the world.  
Washington’s murder of Soleimani is a criminal act that could start World War 3 just as the Serbian murder of the Austrian Archduke set World War 1 in motion.  Only Putin and Russia with China’s help can stop this war that Washington has set in motion.
Putin understood that the Washington/Israeli intended destabilization of Syria was aimed at Russia.  Without warning Russia intervened, defeated the Washington financed and armed proxy forces, and restored stability to Syria. 
Defeated, Washington and Israel have decided to bypass Syria and take the attack on Russia directly to Iran.  The destabilization of Iran serves both Washington and Israel.  For Israel Iran’s demise stops support for Hezbollah, the Lebanese militia that has twice defeated Israel’s army and prevented Israel’s occupation of southern Lebanon.  For Washington Iran’s demise allows CIA-supported jihadists to bring instability into the Russian Federation.
Unless Putin submits to American and Israeli will, he has no choice but to block any Washington/Israeli attack on Iran.  
The easiest and cleanest way for Putin to do this is to announce that Iran is under Russia’s protection.  This protection should be formalized in a mutual defense treaty between Russia, China, and Iran, with perhaps India and Turkey as members. This is hard for Putin to do, because incompetent historians have convinced Putin that alliances are the cause of war.  But an alliance such as this would prevent war.  Not even the insane criminal Netanyahu and the crazed American neoconservatives would, even when completely drunk or deluded, declare war on Iran, Russia,  China, and if included in the alliance India and Turkey.  It would mean the death of America, Israel and any European country sufficiently stupid to participate.
If Putin is unable to free himself from the influence of incompetent historians, who in effect are serving Washington, not Russian, interests, he has other options.  He can calm down Iran by giving Iran the best Russian air defense systems with Russian crews to train the Iranians and whose presence serve as a warning to Washington and Israel that an attack on Russian forces is an attack on Russia.
This done, Putin can then, not offer, but insist on mediating.  This is Putin’s role as there is no other with the power, influence and objectivity to mediate.  
Putin’s job is not so much to rescue Iran as to get Trump out of a losing war that would destroy Trump. Putin could set his own price.  For example, Putin’s price can be the revival of the INF/START treaty, the anti-ballistic missile treaty, the removal of NATO from Russian borders.  In effect, Putin is positioned to demand whatever he wants.
Iranian missiles can sink any American vessels anywhere near Iran.  Chinese missiles can sink any American fleets anywhere near China.  Russian missiles can sink American fleets anywhere in the world.  The ability of Washington to project power in the Middle East now that everyone, Shia and Sunni and Washington’s former proxies such as ISIS, hates Americans with a passion is zero.  The State Department has had to order Americans out of the Middle East.  How does Washingon count as a force in the Middle East when no American is safe there? 
Of course Washington is stupid in its arrogance, and Putin, China, and Iran must take this into consideration.  A stupid government is capable of bringing ruin not only on itself but on others.

So there are risks for Putin.  But there are also risks for Putin failing to take charge.  If Washington and Israel attack Iran, which Israel will try to provoke by some false flag event as sinking an American warship and blaming Iran, Russia will be at war anyway.  Better for the initiative to be in Putin’s hands.  And better for the world and life on Earth for Russia to be in charge.
Paul Craig Roberts

New Year Address to the Nation

December 31, 2019
The Kremlin, Moscow

President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Citizens of Russia, Friends,
The year 2020 is just around the corner. We are on the threshold of the third decade of the 21st century. We are living in turbulent, dynamic and contradictory times, but we can and must do everything for Russia to develop successfully, so that everything in our lives changes only for the better. In excited anticipation, we are awaiting the chiming of the clock, and we believe and hope that all our wishes will come true.
Our personal plans and dreams are inseparable from Russia. Our present and future, and the future of our children depend on the efforts and the contribution of each one of us. Only together will we be able to resolve the tasks facing our society and country today. Our unity is the foundation for achieving the loftiest goals.
These values were passed on to us by our ancestors, the heroic and unbending generation of victors. Next year, we will celebrate the 75th anniversary of Victory in the Great Patriotic War. With all my heart, I would like to extend my New Year greetings to battle front veterans and home front workers, people of the older generation who have gone through many trials for the sake of us all and the future of our Motherland. I bow down to you.
Friends, we always prepare for the New Year in advance and, despite being busy, we believe that the warmth of human relations and companionship are the most important thing. We strive to do something important and useful for other people and to help those who require our support, to make them happy by giving them presents and our attention.
Such sincere impulses, pure thoughts and selfless generosity are the true magic of the New Year holiday. It brings out the best in people and transforms the world filling it with joy and smiles.
Uplifting New Year’s feelings and wonderful impressions have been living in us since childhood and come back every New Year, when we hug our loved ones, our parents, prepare surprises for our children and grandchildren, decorate the New Year tree with them and unpack once again paper cut-outs, baubles and glass garlands. These, sometimes ancient, but beloved family trinkets give their warmth to the younger generations.
Of course, each family has its own New Year traditions, but everyone is united by an atmosphere of kindness and care. May the happiness of mutual understanding be in your home forever, helping to overcome all difficulties and bringing different generations ever closer. May your parents be blessed with good health and always be the focus of your attention, and may each child know that he or she is the best loved ever.
Friends, New Year is knocking at our door. Let us wish each other and our Motherland peace and prosperity.

Happy holidays and a Happy New Year 2020!

Vladimir Putin’s annual news conference

The news conference was broadcast live by Rossiya-1, Rossiya-24, Channel One, NTV television channels, as well as radio stations Mayak, Vesti FM and Radio Rossii.
December 19, 2019
 Vladimir Putin’s annual news conference.Vladimir Putin’s annual news conference.
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Vladimir Putin’s annual news conference.
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon,
We are holding our traditional end-of-year meeting to summarise the year’s results, to see what we have achieved and what we could not achieve and why.
I will refrain from lengthy opening remarks. As I see, there are many people who would like to ask their questions, and during today’s discussion, today’s meeting, I will try to use these questions to talk more about what is happening in our country and how.
Thank you for your keen interest in such meetings. Let us begin.
Presidential Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov: Thank you, Mr President.
Traditionally we give priority to the ‘veterans’ of the Kremlin pool of journalists, who have covered the President’s work for many years. I will continue this tradition.
Valery Sanfirov, Mayak. Please, pass the microphone.
Valery Sanfirov: Hello, Mr President. Valery Sanfirov, Mayak radio station.
Initially, I had a different question, but I changed my mind when I heard today’s weather forecast: there will be no snow until the end of December. And I wondered where you would tape your New Year address to the nation.
My question is not about the New Year tree but about climate change. Everyone is talking about it, but it looks as if nobody knows what to do about it. What are the risks? How can climate change damage Russia?
One more thing: Russia has joined the Paris Agreement this year, if I am not mistaken (the Government has adopted a resolution to this effect). Under the agreement, Russia must reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25–30 percent by 2030.
However, you said at the recent VTB Russia Calling! forum that we would reduce the emissions by as much as 60 percent by that deadline. I wonder if you have made your first mistake or if you have something special in mind.
Thank you.
Vladimir Putin: You have trapped me, you really have.
Indeed, Russia has joined the Paris Agreement. In fact, we announced our intention to do this much earlier, but this year we have formalised our decision by adopting a Government resolution. It does mention the reduction of 25–30 percent compared to the base year 1990. This is what all countries, including EU member states, do, they compare their reductions to 1990 or use it as the base year.
But if… How can I get out of your trap? If we take [the base figure] as 100 percent and subtract 30 percent from it, the remaining figure will be 70 percent, and bearing in mind the absorption capacity of our forests, the ultimate figure will be 60 percent of the base figure. Let us assume that this is what I had in mind. This is my first argument.