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Miles Report No. 55 - An open letter of apology to the new Russian ambassador, Alexander Darchiev
Dear Mr. Darchiev,
On my behalf only, I would like to apologize for the attitude and behaviours of Evan Solomon when you were interviewed by him recently. I am both insulted and amazed by his interview, which has taken CBC mainstream media (MSM) news interview/reporting standards to a new low. There are many words I could use to describe his actions: doltish, insolent, obdurate, obstinate, ignorant, conceited, rude, asinine. Take your pick, they all fit equally well.
I apologize that you had to put up with this kind of behaviour as part of your introduction to Canada and I sincerely hope that your vision of Canada and its everyday people will not be overly tarnished by the rudeness and bias of one MSM lackey. At the same time I would also like to congratulate you on your calmness throughout the interview - as if you expected such an attack - and the clear answers that you provided. They just did not happen to be the “correct” answer that Solomon was digging for - probably an abject apology for going against the Washington consensus, and saying we will deconstruct the Russian Federation as you wish.
As this is an open letter of apology, I would like to review what occurred during the interview and highlight its many problems, with comments directed for Evan Solomon's attention as well - not that his producers will ever let this get through to him....
It all started with a very shallow greeting that included comments about Mr Putin’s “aggressive words” without specifying the reference. Solomon immediately then turned to what I have found to be his baseline ignorance - wilful or otherwise - of the overall Russian situation:
New sanctions...another blow to a country already struggling with a sliding and collapsing economy. With oil prices tumbling, with the ruble at a record low can Russia turn its economy around and will more sanctions force it to change its position on Crimea - or - is more diplomacy the solution?
Mr. Darchiev, you did not seem at all surprised by this question, probably having heard it before from reviewing other interviews and being appraised of the situation before arriving in Canada. Sure oil prices are tumbling, thanks to Canada’s allies, the theocratic monarchy of Saudi Arabia, with adverse affects on Russia, but also on Scotland, Norway, the U.S., Venezuela and other oil producing states. This, as one of your later comments suggested, “They are counterproductive because they could not meet the intended goal.”
As for the ruble being at record lows, that could be for several reasons. First, U.S. oligarchs like George Soros could be simply shorting the foreign exchange markets to drive it down. Or it could the U.S. Fed and its allied banks doing the same thing, and as the ruble weakens it is readily understandable that the Russian oligarchs will also start selling out to avoid losses. One could also ask Solomon if he is aware that the ruble has rebounded 32 per cent and the Russian stock market 41 per cent as of this writing.
Then, considering the economic turnaround, I believe that Solomon should talk to Qin Gang, China’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman, or China’s President, Xi Jinping. At the same time he should also ask you in particular about your foreign exchange reserves (large) and your debt to GDP ratio (small), and for added measure, ask about the gold you are buying with the US$ you earn when you sell your resources to the EU. But no, that would mean he would have to change the topic!
As is typical of Solomon, he continued his opening rant,
You arrive at a time of very low relationships between Canada and Russia. As you know, the last time Stephen Harper encountered Vladimir Putin he said, “I guess I’ll shake your hand but get out of Crimea” [sic - sorry, Evan the word was Ukraine] Let me ask you, is there any possibility that Russia will leave Crimea?”
Your reply, Mr. Darchiev, was clear and concise, “Crimea is Russia once and forever.” As you continued your response, Solomon interrupted you several times, trying to keep the conversation on his chosen agenda. Finally he interrupted with another comment adding this time that Canada and a few others view this as “an illegal annexation of Crimea.”
Again your response, concerning the people’s will, the UN Charter, and a referendum result of ninety-six per cent, was interrupted several times, before he broke clear through adding that “...both you and I know [do we?]” that the referendum was “forced upon them by the tanks in the streets and so this is not considered as a legitimate referendum.”
Really! Once could go well back in U.S. history from Vietnam through Chile, Iran under the Shah, Guatemala, Afghanistan, Iraq, and other countries where our wonderful democratic neighbours and our current geopolitical leader have used direct force and covert force with “tanks in the streets” - and more - to hold elections to serve their own purposes. Or, perhaps one could look at those tanks as protecting the Crimeans from the murder and assaults that the neo-Nazi skinheads in Kiev were unleashing on the Ukrainian population.
Rather calmly, Mr Darchiev, you responded that there are other areas of disagreement, reminding Solomon (if he ever knew) that “There was a Russian sponsored resolution condemning heroization of Naziism in which Canada voted ‘nein’ in a small company of other countries.”
Without missing a beat, Solomon came right back to his talking points, “Let me just focus on Crimea because that seems to be the hot spot.” Oh come on, there are many hot spots in the world, many ignored by the MSM, and others decidedly biased to the Washington consensus. It was here that Solomon doubled down on his insults by referring to his interview with Canada’s Foreign Minister, John Baird. Are we to assume, Evan, that the new ambassador has not been appraised of Baird’s stupid comments already? Anyway, and even though I have reported on this earlier (1) here is the ‘evil’ quote again:
We can’t accommodate evil. We’ve got to confront it and that’s why the civilized world [!!!] is speaking with one voice - strongly -Canada, the United States, the European Union, are seeking to get the Russian Federation to take a different course. One man in the Kremlin thinks he can redraw the border of Europe through military force, that’s just not 2014, and I think cowering away from confronting that type of evil is just the wrong way to go.
Solomon then reinforced the ‘evil’ idea saying, “Straight up comparison between what Mr Putin has done in your country and ‘evil’.” So what is your point Evan? Do you really think Mr. Darchiev will stand up and admit that your narrow-minded sycophantic idea of Russian evil is valid? It really should have any audience wondering who controls you, or if you are really a FOX News/O’Reilly kind of interviewer - how did you ever get this far on CBC?
And once again, when you tried to respond Mr Darchiev, Solomon rudely cut you off, his pattern of “interviewing” you throughout the dialogue. Solomon came up with the ridiculous statement, “I recognize there are issues there but can we focus on Crimea, you keep trying to change the topic of conversation….”
A dazzling piece of social ignorance. Evan, you had received your answer, “Crimea is Russia forever,” but you cannot let that stand and move on to other areas of concern - say perhaps the ‘glorification of Naziism’ that is occurring in western Ukraine. You are obviously searching for an answer you are not going to get, or you are so stubbornly wilfully ignorant that your own emotions are mired in the rut of Russia being our evil enemy - in which case there will never be a good answer for you, while you get to beat your war drum to the same beat - over and over - and over again.
The ‘dialogue’ continued, sort of, with your attempts, Mr. Darchiev, to add some reality to the discussion, but Solomon kept interrupting and over talking you (yeah, like a real conversation, eh, Evan?).
Finally Solomon broke through your attempts to speak and went on another reiteration of his tired untrue themes,
I understand that but you realize that Canada and the rest of the world [does that include China? India? Brazil? South Africa? Ecuador? - sorry I interrupted your message, do go on…] they see Russia as outside of international norms [you know, not like Israel bombing and invading Gaza, or the U.S. unilaterally invading Iraq on falsified data, or - oops, sorry Evan, there I go again interrupting you, please continue -] because of the Ukraine and now what is happening in Luhansk, the eastern part of Ukraine [it is called the Donbas, Evan, for those who might be geographically challenged - dang, another interruption, please, let’s move forward to your best repetitions -] It has caused sanctions to be imposed and deepening sanctions, this at a time when the price of oil has collapsed [Saudi’s versus the U.S. shale oil? versus Canada’s tar sands?] when your ruble has collapsed, your economy now is in freefall, there is no growth, your economy is fast going the other way. Why provoke this kind of response with the annexation of Crimea and what's happening with eastern Ukraine. This has been the question the west has asked of your country. What’s the answer?
Mr. Darchiev, again my apologies for having to put up with this persistent stupidity.
Evan, you have already received your answer, your supposed question is just stupefied ignorance that Russia is able to stand up against the imperial hegemon that you obviously support in its attempts to maintain the global reserve petrodollar and thus global hegemony. The only reason I can think of for you continuing on in this asinine manner, using your ‘talking points’ so repetitively as you accuse the Harper neo-Conervatives of doing in Parliament, is that...hmmm…..I really don’t know.
It could be that you are simply the asinine dolt you present yourself as here, or maybe someone is paying you to maintain this outlandish reiteration of stupidity, perhaps you too are a member of the neo-Conservatives, or maybe the CBC has been given its marching orders to operate the news the way the neo-Conservatives (i.e. Harper) wants it to be presented….you certainly do not represent an intelligent, independent, analytical media.
To interview an ambassador to our country with many repetitions of untrue statements about the economy, telling him his boss, Mr. Putin was evil, about an action for which Mr. Darchiev gave you a clear answer and was willing to talk about other concerns between Russia and Canada, with many interruptions and indeed over talking of Mr. Darchiev so that he could not continue with his explanations - all that is simply astonishingly idiotic (have I used that word yet….no, appears not, would not want to repeat myself too often).
The interview ends - at least as presented on CBC internet, with Solomon going through a quick series of questions. The first was “Why? Why are sanctions counterproductive?” and then as Mr. Darchiev tried to give an answer, you again interrupted repeatedly, and again over talked him.
Hopefully Mr. Darchiev, you have already met many more knowledgeable and rationale Canadians, and are able to put aside - without forgetting (how could you) this insult to both your position and intelligence, not to mention the insult it makes to many Canadians who are able to see through the uber-patriotic U.S. right wing drivel that passes for foreign policy in Ottawa.
Again, my apologies for this malcontent character’s inane method of interviewing you.
Best wishes for a Merry Christmas, and best wishes for a more sane and reasonable New Year.