New Russian Visa, Leaving the UK, Back to Work, and UK, FYI….

Today, after filling out all the relevant documentation, submitting my application, payment, as each year in recent years, I received my visa for Russia, valid for the next year: 


My concrete plans are to go to Luxembourg, to finish my documentary there, on Belval. And then Russia, to start filming reportage about the World Cup 2018. Those are my only concrete plans at this time.

Just for the record, and I’m sure they regret saying this now, given the ramping up in their support of Ukraine, but in September 2016, the UK Ambassador to Ukraine, Judith Gough, said this: 

“Mr. Phillips did not commit an offense in Great Britain that could be a reason for the British government to make him forbidden to leave the country.”

Nor have I committed any offences since then. 

And on we go to work! It’s a huge year ahead, there’s so much to do, and I’m in the mood to do it!

How the UK Got it So Wrong on Euromaidan, and Ukraine

The UK, under then Prime Minister David Cameron, made their call from the start about whose side they were taking in the Ukraine situation. In March of 2014, then foreign secretary William Hague was lying to the UK parliament about Viktor Yanukovych having been ‘legimitately’ removed from power. He was actually removed by the violent coup which was Euromaidan.

Meanwhile David Cameron was telling parliament, in March of 2014: What has happened to Ukraine is completely indefensible. Its territorial integrity has been violated and the aspirations of its people to chart their own future are being frustrated.

This European Council sent a clear and united message to Russia that its actions are in flagrant breach of international law and will incur consequences. We agreed on a three-phase approach to stand up to this aggression and uphold international law: first, some immediate steps to respond to what Russia has done; secondly, urgent work on a set of measures that will follow if Russia refuses to enter dialogue with the Ukrainian Government; and thirdly, a set of further, far-reaching consequences should Russia take further steps to destabilise the situation in Ukraine.

It continues…

There was never an attempt to take into account the facts of Maidan:

A maximum of 500,000 (and that’s protesters figures, even) gathered on Euromaidan – that’s around 1% of the population of Ukraine.

But actually (and I was on Maidan), those who brought Maidan’s ‘victory’ (Yanukovych fleeing in fear of his life, government legitimately elected in 2012 just swept away) were not the mostly peaceful 500,000, it was the few thousand radicals, far-right, terrorists on Maidan.

So, take your pick: at best the UK supported the ‘right’ of 1% of the population of Ukraine on Maidan, over the 99% not on Maidan.

Or actually, the 0.01% who actually defined Maidan: the far-right, radicals, terrorists…

And Maidan ‘represented’ not the whole of Ukraine, in any way. Those there were almost exclusively from the west and centre of the country. Donbass didn’t take part, and was actually against Maidan, the South similarly.

So the UK chose to support a violent coup, dressed up as a revolution, in a country which had always had an east-west divide. And one which installed a government with an agenda dictated by ultra-nationals from the west, diametrically opposed to the life, history, culture of those in the east, who’d never voted for a Maidan government, and actually no one voted for a Maidan government. There were no elections, they just seized power. (Key figure in Maidan, and now chairman of Ukrainian parliament, founder of Ukrainian neo-Nazi Svoboda party, Andry Parubiy).

The UK chose to support a coup government, a junta, formed after a violent coup. Yet, all we were hearing about in the time in the UK was the BBC and co’s glowing coverage of the ‘revolution of dignity’ on Maidan, etc.

Most people in the UK know yet little about Euromaidan, the BBC, realising word was getting out, belatedly covered their proverbials with a documentary about the Maidan snipers.

Yet the general perception remains in the UK, is that if people know about Euromaidan, they generally subscribe to the narrative that it was a ‘revolution of dignity’, Ukrainians ‘fighting for their freedom’, etc – rather than a small proportion of the population in Kiev, peaceful maybe but supporting a minute proportion of ultra-nationals and radicals who overthrew a democratically-elected government before wanting to impose their own (unelected) agenda, on the east. And expecting that all to be ok.

If there’s an event about Euromaidan in the UK, be sure it will be universally pro-Maidan, that’s the only permitted position (this, the LSE from February of 2017):

Actually the unconditional support of the UK, US, Europe, was one of the fuelling factors in those on Maidan believing they could have it all their way.

And what happened after? Crimea, Donbass, war, mass loss of life due to war, ongoing misery due to war, which goes on to this day. And the UK? The position has remained set in stone = Maidan = Good. So everything against Maidan = bad.

This, despite the masses of evidence that a re-evaluation of Maidan is required. Because if Maidan wasn’t so good, then maybe all that went against it isn’t so bad…. that is a highly dangerous idea the UK is desperate to eliminate while still embryonic. The UK has remained entirely intransigent.

What have we had over the last few years?

Foreign Secretary William Hague taking a relentlessly pro-Ukraine, anti-Russia position.

Ukraine crisis: William Hague warns Russia

William Hague: Russia faces ‘isolation’ over Ukraine – BBC News

Russian actions over Ukraine may create new cold war – William Hague

Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond taking a relentlessly pro-Ukraine, anti-Russia position.

Philip Hammond: Britain not ruling out providing ‘lethal force’ in Ukraine

Philip Hammond: ‘No let-up’ in pressure on Russia over Ukraine

Foreign Secretary denounces Russia’s continued illegal annexation of Crimea

Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson taking a relentlessly pro-Ukraine, anti-Russia position.

UK’s Johnson reassures Ukraine of support after Brexit vote

Boris Johnson demands Russia end its ‘illegal’ annexation of Crimea during a visit to Ukraine

UK will not compromise on sovereignty of Ukraine: Johnson

Ukrinform: Boris Johnson says Britain will continue to provide Ukraine with non-lethal military aid

The position of Prime Minister Theresa May has hardly altered from Cameron’s. Lately, the UK has even been ramping up its support of Ukraine –

United Kingdom Steps Up Support of Ukrainian Army Still Shelling Civilians

A big question must be – why? That’s something I’ll be having a look at in the next Truth Speaker article.

A Graham Newsletter (#32) The UK Ups Support for Ukraine, BBC Come After Me

This is a factual newsletter, lots of info, lets get right to it.

Ben Stimson was recently jailed in the UK for his participation in Donbass. The UK effectively use Ben as the fall guy to send out a statement: they are upping their support for Ukraine:

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/07/18/rank-injustice-hypocrisy-in-the-uk-the-case-of-ben-stimson-and-chris-garrett/

Shortly after, the UK update their travel advice for Ukraine, stating: “If you travel to eastern Ukraine to fight, or to assist others engaged in the conflict, your activities may amount to offences against UK terrorism or other legislation and you could be prosecuted on your return to the UK”.

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/07/22/update-uk-updates-ukraine-travel-advice/

The UK also announces the other day, that it’s stepping up military support to Ukraine: 

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/07/21/united-kingdom-steps-up-support-of-ukrainian-army-still-shelling-civilians/

And, in this time, the UK’s propagada agency, the BBC have come for me: 

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/07/22/exclusive-how-the-uk-are-trying-to-stop-my-work-full-story/

What do the BBC want? They want to do an interview with me, where I either state, or they make out that I stated, that I’m ‘returning to Donbass’, having done a hit on me as a ‘Russian propagandist, banned from Ukraine as a threat to national security’, etc.

Public outcry at the repression of a journalist deflected, by the BBC, onto ‘UK authorities stop Russian propagandist’. 

The UK have resorted to this now, because actually last September, UK ambassador Judith Gough stated, despite her opporbrium of my work that I hadn’t committed any offences in the UK, so they couldn’t touch me (although if Ukraine get me, they can do what they like).

Yet, things have clearly changed.  Ben Stimson hadn’t committed any offences in the UK, actually he hadn’t committed any offences anywhere given that he’d never fired a shot in anger, but they still got him.

So, they sent in the BBC to find something new to frame me with, in the light of Ben’s conviction, and precedent set. Would they jail me? Almost certainly no. Would they try to stop me leaving the country? They’d love to. 

By the way, you can read my recent article about Judith Gough, here:

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/07/22/uk-ambassador-judith-gough-having-a-gay-time-in-ukraine-while-war-in-donbass-goes-on/

And my recent reportage, from Moscow here:

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/07/20/my-visit-to-the-ukrainian-cultural-centre-in-moscow-special-reportage/

And a look at recent Donbass reportage here: 

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/07/17/my-recent-donbass-period-25-key-moments/

There’s a lot of reportage to come, but no longer in the UK will I write, or can I write about ‘reportage to come from Donbass, Crimea’. However, I’ll always tell the truth. I’m leaving the UK soon, to finish my documentary from Luxembourg, about Belval. After that, there will be reportage from Russia.

As ever, all my work is 100% supported by individual donations on crowdfunding, and I’m hugely grateful to anyone who helps keep my independent, objective journalism alive:

https://www.paypal.me/grahamwphillips

Cambridge University, Fake Research, Rory Finnin, Anti-Russia Propaganda

Ever wonder why the mood in the UK is so entrenched, endemic, anti-Russian? Well, where are a huge number of politicians, business leaders and more, educated?

Fake News
is now in the zeigeist, and a number of media outlets have been accused of producing fake news over the last year. However it looks like even that mighty bastion, Cambridge University – 2nd oldest university in the English-speaking world, along with Oxford arguably the most famous, has been implicated in a Fake News spin-off – Fake Research.

Dr Rory Finnin, is the Head of Slavonic Studies at Cambridge University. Actual biographical details of Finnin are not readily available. In a world of biographies laid out with full details, Finnin’s gives only the scantest of details, but an internet search shows he has been at Cambridge in a senior departmental capacity since at least 2010.

Finnin is not one to even make an attempt to be impartial as an academic, here he is, on Al Jazeera in 2014, accusing Putin of ‘flat untruths, really bad strategic policy‘. Finnin entirely defends the coup power put in place by Euromaidan, making no reference at all to the terrorism behind that coup. Finnin goes on to accuse Yanukovych of shooting ‘at least 94’ of ‘his own people’ – something so preposterous even the BBC had to debunk it. Watch the interview with Finnin here –

01:47 – “The Ukrainian people legally took power.” Ok, I was at Euromaidan, and filmed there. This is the ‘Ukrainian people legally taking power‘, then…

Finnin rounds off by stating that Russia has ‘invaded’ Ukraine – it’s ‘as simple as that’. If you are, as Finnin clearly is, a pathological Russophone, then it probably is ‘as simple as that‘. However, for the rest of us, it’s really not, and surely, particularly, the finest minds of the UK at Cambridge should not be being taught by a man who believes a deeply nuanced crisis can be summarised by ‘as simple as that’, on a presumably paid-for tv appearance… no mention of the far-right, ultra-nationalist, neo-Nazi forces behind Euromaidan which caused Crimea, and the former east of Ukraine to take up against the unelected coup power they put in place so strongly? From Finnin, nothing of the sort…

Finnin pops up again in 2014, on CNN, August, to accuse Russia, of ‘waging a war of aggression against the Ukrainian state’ and the ‘Russian ‘invasion’ of the ‘east of Ukraine’, ‘Russian troops’, ‘columns of tanks’, ‘regular Russian soldiers’… watch for yourself, from 2 minutes on –

Finnin continues with some bizarre faux-concern for these ‘Russian soldiers’, and the ‘backlash’ they supposedly face back home. There is a truly staggering moment after 5 minutes when he positions Mariupol as a ‘peaceful’, city where Russian-speakers had their rights enshrined, and ‘hundreds, if not thousands’, of citizens had protested Putin. No mention at all of Ukrainian forces storming into Mariupol in May, opening fire, and then firing on civilians marking Victory Day – just a couple of videos of that here –

Finnin clearly prides himself as an ‘esteemed academic’, and so forth. Actually his biography on the official Cambridge website states –

‘In 2015 Finnin won a Teaching Award for Outstanding Lecturer from the Cambridge University Students’ Union (CUSU), the representative body for all students at the University.’

But there’s no claim even that Finnin has ever done any of his own research on this situation. All his assertions are based on what Finnin has read, and seen, in the media. And given there’s no attempt whatsoever to present a balanced picture, it’s clear that Finnin has simply chosen media to suit his own polemic. As simple as that…

Finnin’s views expressed on his television appearances are exactly those which make it into his ‘academic research’, taught to students at Cambridge (pictured). So, to recap – entirely one-sided, biased, unrelated to facts and entirely dictated by Finnin’s transparent vendetta against Putin, and Russia. Finnin’s piece, with Dr Thomas T Grant (Faculty of Law), from August 2015 – published here on the official Cambridge University site – https://www.cam.ac.uk/research/discussion/dont-call-it-a-civil-war-ukraines-conflict-is-an-act-of-russian-aggression

Don’t call it a civil war – Ukraine’s conflict is an act of Russian aggression

A few extracts of that here –

As Ukraine marks 24 years since its independence from the Soviet Union, it is embroiled in the most dangerous armed conflict in Europe – against the Russian Federation.

Wrong. Ukraine is waging a war of self-defence against an international aggressor – the Russian Federation.

Then there’s the matter of Ukraine’s right to self-defence, which of course is a right of all states. Russia’s aggression against Ukraine is just about the only case where a UN member state has seized and in effect sliced off whole regions of another UN member state.

Perhaps eedless to say, there’s no attempt to balance any of this with an alternative view to Finnin’s diatribe. So, let’s come to the nub of it – what is Finnin there for, what does he want? Have a look here again – from 7 mins 30 on…

He wants Ukraine to be in NATO, have access to NATO arms. And here – 

It’s not as if the signs aren’t clear. Recent weeks have seen another intense spike in fighting in eastern Ukraine. Given all the prior sabre-rattling, nuclear threats and general rhetorical brinksmanship, it takes little imagination to see the conflict expanding beyond Ukraine’s borders into EU member states.

Rory Finnin is within the hallowed walls of Cambridge, with a role in shaping the minds of future key players in the UK. And be sure, he’s there to shape them entirely against Russia, position Russia as a ‘threat’ in the strongest way possible, incite and cement anti-Russian sentiment, warmonger even.

It’s time to face reality. The continued escalation of the war in Ukraine poses a serious challenge to international public order. Journalists have risked everything to report events from this war, and we need to stop watering down their reports with euphemism and understatement. We need to call this what it is: a war of self-defence against an international aggressor.

So, that’s Cambridge University. Fake Research, feeding into Fake News. Fake Doctors. However a very real answer to the question about why there is so much anti-Russian sentiment in the UK. Some people are making sure it’s kept like that. And be sure, Finnin is far from the only one.

British Army Helping Ukraine Kill Civilians in Donbass

Everyone who follows the situation in Ukraine objectively knows exactly what’s happening. Ukrainian forces, comprised of radicals, and extremists, are shelling civilian areas of Donbass, causing mass civilian death, because Donbass didn’t accept the illegitimate regime imposed on Ukraine after Euromaidan

I cover that as a journalist, and I speak here as a proud Briton. What a shock to see our country not only support this, but trumpet it – 


 

 

In the first case, I feel for the civilians of Donbass who are still under daily shelling by Ukrainian forces – trained by British. In the second, I feel for my countrymen, normal British soldiers, forced to take part in something that will bring them shame for the rest of their lives.

A disgrace for our armed forces, a disgrace for our country.

Fire in London, and a Tough Period for the UK

As I write this, a fire is blazing in Grenfell Tower, west London, with reports of multiple deaths.  My thoughts are with all those affected by this.

It’s a difficult time in the UK. Politically, in a mess, after the recent election, with terrorist great britainattacks, and civilian death, a monthly event in recent times. In this last period I’ve been working in Donbass, in what is still a warzone, more people, civilians, have been killed in the UK by terrorist attacks, than in Donbass by war. 

I see a sufficient quantity of anti-Britain comments. And, more than anyone, I accept that catastrophic political decisions, and foreign policy, with particular emphasis on the Tony Blair and post, period, have brought that upon us.  However, the Great Britain I am from, and know, is a friendly country, of great people, and it’s always in my heart.

I’ll be back there soon, and my thoughts with Great Britain, at this time.

General Election in the UK: My Statement on actions regarding that

Theresa May has just called a snap election for June 8th, of this year. 

As you know, I love reporting from the UK, however I’m committed to working in Serbia for now, then Donbass, and Crimea, in this time, and I will fulfill those commitments.

In the past, I’ve supported – and openly – certain politics, or political parties in the UK, for example, I voted UKIP at the 2015 General Election, and was more than open about that, as I believed that we needed a referendum on EU membership.

Before that,  I’d generally inclined towards the Conservative Party. However, the actions of the Conservative Party in respect of Donbass, and not only, mean that I cannot, and do not support them now.

I support the best possible government for the UK, which will deliver, for the country I love, good relationships with Europe, Russia, and the world, and make Great Britain a country which does good in the world.