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Windows to Russia


Looks like the NATO visit and hoopla last week did not make much of an impression with Russia:

NATO doesn’t recognize agreement on deployment of Russian military bases in Abkhazia, said Carmen Romero, NATO representative.

NATO calls on Russia to withdraw its armed forces at the positions they used to stay in up to August 7th 2008, and let foreign monitors in the territory of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

Romero highlighted the Alliance believes these two regions the inalienable parts of Georgia, and NATO position in regard to the territorial integrity of the country remains the same.

Previously Georgia Times reported that Presidents of Russia and Abkhazia, Dmitry Medvedev and Sergey Bagapsh, yesterday signed 10 agreements in various spheres.

Today their discussion will be continued. One of the signed documents implied deployment of a Russian military base in Black Sea coast for 49 years. The Foreign Ministry of Georgia has already expressed its protest and accused Moscow of attempt to increase its presence in occupied territories.

Fat chance of Russia heeding what NATO wants her to do. I have heard in the grapevine that Russia did not take to heart what NATO said in the meeting when Albright came last week and it really looks like that is true.

“Remember Russia has a different plan for European security and that is a major threat to NATO. As Medvedev has said, NATO is not Russia’s friend and is a threat to Russian security.”

Medvedev means it…

Windows to Russia!

You have to laugh at a group of political individuals that “want something so bad” that they will include the very one’s who they are thumbing their nose at! The Nabucco Pipeline:

Intended to ease Europe’s dependence on Russian gas, the US and EU-backed project has been stymied over finances and the need to find reliable suppliers. In January of 2010, Washington suggested that Russia could have a role in Nabucco.

It seems the pipeline that was to show Russia who is boss, but has to have Russian gas guarantees to even be a viable option. This is an issue well known in Russia, but the fact is that the rest of the world is now starting to see that by super sanctions on Iran and looming threat of war in Iran, that they can not begin to get enough gas to make the pipeline viable unless Russia helps out. The fact is even if Iran was a stable issue that Russia would still have to help out, to make the pipeline viable. Yes I know that there are several sources available but those sources are not reliable either. They also can not fill the pipeline and for this pipeline to work it has to have suppliers!

So have I missed something?

Does it make sense to build a pipeline to thumb your nose at Russia. Then you have to say, “Hey, Russia can you help fill and supply gas to the pipeline, so that we can still thumb our noses at you?”

Now of course Russia has the South Stream Pipeline and it looks like the last hurdle has almost been overcome and Russia does not need anyone to help fill that pipeline…

Seems that in this financial collapse of the Western world that building a pipeline at multiples of billions of dollars needs to be reconsidered. Let Russia do what Russia does best and develop her energy sector. I can tell you right now, that once Ukraine and Belarus are out of the picture, transit issues are gone…

But there are some in Europe and America that want the Nabucco Pipeline built even if they can not fill it with gas. I have heard said, that they will worry about that part later. They wish to thumb their noses at Russia at all costs…

Windows to Russia!


A good reader gave me a link on Facebook to this video about: Moscow metro, new stations Myakinino, Volokolamskaya, Mitino at opening day. Московское метро, станции Мякинино, Волоколамская, Митино в день открытия!

Svet and I have not been to these stations yet and looks like we need to go. This video shows a good look at Russian people checking out the new stations…

If you are curious about what Russians look like this will give you lots to look at.

Yes – they look, act and walk – just like you! :)

You can tell it was made around the beginning of the year because of the New Year Trees that you will see. (No they are not Christmas Trees they are New Year Trees!)

Enjoy the video…

Windows to Russia!


PRESIDENT OF RUSSIA DMITRY MEDVEDEV: Mr President, colleagues, media representatives,

The official part of the President of Abkhazia’s visit to Russia is over. It might sound like a commonplace thing to say, but this visit really does mark a new milestone in Russian-Abkhazian relations. The documents we have just signed are evidence. There are a number of them and they cover practically all areas of our cooperation – the economy, in particular the transport sector, migration, defence. I hope that these agreements will serve as a base for even more intensive development of our economic ties.

We were not idle last year, but signed a substantial package of 25 bilateral agreements that laid the legal foundations for cooperation between our countries. Our political dialogue is underway very intensively. Last year, Mr Bagapsh and myself had a whole series of meetings in Moscow, Sochi, and at various international events. The recent presidential inauguration ceremony in Abkhazia was attended by a number of our colleagues. We thus have a full-fledged and substantive political dimension in our relations.

We are developing our interregional ties. Moscow has been active in this respect, as have some other Russian entities, especially those neighbouring Abkhazia, Krasnodar Territory, for example. Other regions are also showing interest in developing relations.

I note these facts because they are tangible evidence that the decision to establish diplomatic relations with Abkhazia following recognition of this new country’s sovereignty is not just a tribute to diplomatic tradition and set of diplomatic attributes, but has substance in the form of full-fledged cooperation, and this is best guarantee of Abkhazia’s development as an independent country.

Today, when we were discussing what steps we need to take, I made a point of saying to our Abkhazian friends that we should make a priority of state cooperation in order to help get Abkhazia’s economy on its feet, supply the means, products and technology essential for economic development, help to establish basic economic and social programmes, boost cooperation in the banking sector, help Abkhazia’s banking sector to develop, and form the base that can then be used to secure an inflow of private investment.

If we build up our cooperation along these lines I am sure that Abkhazia will develop the economic independence it needs to bolster its political independence.

We have a whole number of promising opportunities before us. We have just signed agreements on some of them. One area is Abkhazia’s transport infrastructure, without which the economy cannot develop and build up its most promising sectors such as tourism and agriculture, and also perhaps new projects too, the energy projects our colleagues are working on now, for example.

We are working hard to give our bilateral cooperation a concrete and targeted character. One of the agreements we signed just before is on cooperation in disaster prevention and relief. Of course, we all hope disasters will not happen, but life is such that there is no escaping them sometimes.

Today, incidentally, right at this moment, ten fire engines and rescue vehicles are being delivered to Abkhazia. This is just one specific but important part of our cooperation.

Of course, we spoke today about political issues, international issues, regional security issues. Russia and Abkhazia have an agreement on military cooperation. Today, we signed an agreement on a Russian military base in Abkhazia. This agreement fully reflects our vision for developing cooperation with Abkhazia, and complies with our international obligations. Most important, this agreement lays the base for Abkhazia’s peaceful development as an independent country.

We are developing our cooperation on the international stage too. Our foreign ministries are in ongoing contact as part of the Geneva talks. These talks are not an easy process but provide the only good direct forum today for contacts between our Abkhazian friends and Western partners and international organisations. Ultimately, all of this will help to improve the social and economic situation in the republic, and help to bring about Abkhazia’s universal recognition as an independent state in the eyes of international law.

Concluding these opening remarks, I want to say that this year has particular significance, and it is symbolic that the President of Abkhazia’s visit falls precisely at this time, because almost exactly 200 years ago, Alexander I signed the decree bringing the Abkhazian principality under Russia’s protection, thus resolving a number of serious problems the Abkhazian people faced at that moment.

We are marking this date with cultural events in which the public is taking part. This is also a very important part of our cooperation.

I thank Mr Bagapsh for the constructive dialogue and for developing friendly relations between our countries, and I once again congratulate him on his re-election to office as President of Abkhazia.

PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF ABKHAZIA SERGEI BAGAPSH: Thank you very much, Mr President. Friends, colleagues,

On behalf of the Abkhazian people I personally want to say an enormous thank you for the fact that we are here, in the Kremlin, the heart of Russia, among our friends, as a recognised country. We are fully aware of everything that is taking place. We are very much aware of Russia’s and Mr Medvedev’s attitude towards us and our problems. We realise that the decision taken in 2008 was a bold and wise step, and that not everything is so straightforward in the international community. But we know that Russia is a strong and powerful country that speaks out as such.

We began working on the agreements signed today a long time ago, before recognition of our independence. Mr President, you know that your ministries and agencies have helped Abkhazia often and in many ways. Now we are giving these relations a new legal foundation. The agreements we signed today place many responsibilities on Abkhazia. We only recently began developing as an independent country and we still have much to learn, much to get used to, because sovereign countries have far more obligations towards the international community and international agreements than they do privileges. We are ready for this. Russia’s recognition of Abkhazia in 2008 places great responsibility on our country and we want to do everything possible, whether in our domestic situation or foreign policy activity, to live up to the hopes placed on us.

I want to thank you from all my heart for the good friendship we have. Mr President, in Abkhazia you have a good ally. The people of Abkhazia are very grateful to you for everything, and we will always stand by you no matter what lies ahead. Let us hope that what lies ahead is peace, happiness, well being and prosperity for our peoples.

Thank you very much.

QUESTION: You have just signed intergovernmental agreements. Do you plan to sign more agreements in other areas soon? This question is for Mr Bagapsh.

SERGEI BAGAPSH: Yes, a considerable number of agreements will still be needed to ensure our country’s normal work and develop our statehood and inter-state relations. We have signed nine agreements and we have 22 more agreements currently in the pipeline. We will sign some more agreements in all different areas because we cannot just limit ourselves to a few ministries and agencies, after all, but need to develop the whole range of relations between our countries. Agreements serve as the basis on which we build these relations, and so yes, this process will continue.

QUESTION: We see that relations are indeed growing fast. This is a fact, but there is also another factor of no small importance in the Trans-Caucasus, namely, the Georgian leadership’s position.

Mr Medvedev, do you intend to end the freeze in relations with Georgia?

Mr Bagapsh, I address the same question to you, only with an additional question: to what extent do the tragic events of the last two decades hinder or affect you in the necessary task of developing relations with your neighbour, Georgia?

DMITRY MEDVEDEV: I have said on many occasions that Russian-Georgian relations, just like Russian-Abkhazian relations, go back centuries, and we have always had the warmest feelings for the Georgian people and, I am sure, will continue to do so. Ultimately, even the serious conflict that took place in 2008 cannot ruin these relations, I am sure.

The current regime in Georgia, the regime led by Saakashvili, bears direct responsibility for what happened. Sadly, those actions led to bloodshed, to loss of life. This is a crime that should be given a suitable legal assessment. As far as the political assessment of these events go, the situation is perfectly clear for a huge number of honest and decent people today. Despite the Georgian leadership’s various attempts to paint events differently, everyone is aware of who started them and with what aims.

I am therefore confident that sooner or later we will return to full and normal relations with Georgia. It cannot be otherwise. But I personally do not wish to have any dealings with the current President of Georgia. He is persona non grata as far as the Russian Federation is concerned. The Georgian people must decide for themselves through the established constitutional procedures who they want to manage their country, and who they think can lead Georgia to prosperity and to normal and friendly relations with its neighbours – the Russian Federation and the Republic of Abkhazia.

SERGEI BAGAPSH: I am convinced that there are no bad nations or peoples, but only bad politicians that lead their countries into the kind of situation we see today in Georgia. We have never said that we have anything against the Georgian people. But it is up to the people to decide who they want to lead them.

As far as relations with Georgia go… I want to support Mr Medvedev on this point. I am often asked this question. We will not have any dealings with Georgia’s current leadership, which is up to its elbows in blood. Rather than negotiating with Saakashvili, we need to pass sentence on him for the acts he has committed against the Abkhazian and Ossetian peoples and against his own people. You cannot live in this complex and fast-changing world if you quarrel with all of your neighbours. This makes survival very difficult. But it is up to the Georgian people to decide how Georgia should live.

* * *

DMITRY MEDVEDEV: Dear friends,

Before we part ways, I want to carry out one task it gives me great pleasure to perform as President of the Russian Federation. Present here today is Mr Iskander, who recently was awarded a Russian state decoration, the Order for Services to the Fatherland, IV degree. It is especially pleasing that this ceremony should take place during the President of Abkhazia’s official visit to Russia.

As Fazil Iskander himself said, he is a Russian writer who sings Abkhazia in his works. There is no question that your works combine the finest traditions of Russian literature and the centuries-old wisdom of the Abkhazian people.

Fazil Iskander’s renown goes beyond Russia and Abkhazia. He has earned international recognition and even had a planet named after him. I therefore think it an entirely fitting conclusion to today’s official visit [by the President of Abkhazia] to present this decoration to a man who symbolises the centuries-old friendship between our peoples and is a link between our countries.

I think we should all express our sincere congratulations to Mr Iskander and wish him good health and all the very best.

Let us offer our congratulations. (Presents the decoration.)

How about some information that has Georgia very upset and pouting:

ITAR-TASS: MOSCOW, February 17 – Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has expressed confidence that Abkhazia’s cooperation with Russia on the international scene will contribute to recognition of the republic’s independence in the world.

“We will develop cooperation on the international scene, including that within the framework of the Geneva discussions. This forum is a good platform for direct contacts of Abkhazian friends with western partners and international structures,” Medvedev said.

“Finally, all this will contribute to recognition of the republic’s independence,” he said after the talks with his Abkhazian counterpart Sergei Bagapsh.

Russia and Abkhazia today signed a deal today allowing Moscow to establish a military base on its soil, causing Georgia to literally have a heart attack.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Abkhaz President Sergei Bagapsh witnessed the signing of the deal by their defense ministers, following talks at the Kremlin in Moscow today.

Russia’s Interfax news agency says the agreement will allow Russia to use and update the infrastructure of an existing military base, as well as to form a joint group of forces. Interfax said the land base has its headquarters located in the port town of Gudauta, just north of the capital, Sukhumi, and already has 1,700 servicemen.

The document is valid for the next 49 years, after which it will be automatically prolonged once every five years.

Another tidbit today is that Russia and an Abkhazia has also signed a formality that the Russian railway will take over all rail services in Abkhazia. Also it has hinted at rebuilding the airport infrastructure and putting Abkhazian airports under Russian care…

Soon the whole Abkhazian infrastructure will be under Russian support…

Windows to Russia!



I like it when readers send me articles and I have decided to do at least once a week a post on an article that someone sends me a link on…

Today I had a good chuckle at a New York Times article that was sent to me by e-mail. This article is called: Washington Shivers, Moscow Laughs!

The New York Times article is from a perspective of American journalists commenting on Russian journalists reactions in DC about the snow:

In their reports sent home, Russian journalists in Washington seemed to have a hard time suppressing their grins. Mikhail Solodovnikov of Russian state television did his segment wandering outside the Capitol without a hat, as if to demonstrate how positively temperate the place was. (It is practically against the law in Moscow to venture outside hatless in February.)

“Political life is dead,” Mr. Solodovnikov told his viewers. “News about the weather totally displaces news about anything else happening in the world. As if this is a tornado or a hurricane, and not just simply snow.”

That last statement is the clincher, “not just simply snow.” That is where the mind set of a Russian diverges from an American about snow. When you sometimes live with snow 6 months a year or even longer. Snow becomes part of life, not a “here today gone tomorrow” sort of thing!

I would like to point out that Moscow really does not see anything laughable in Washington’s reaction to snow but as a past article of mine says, “Moscow (Russia) does wonder about America and snow!” Russians have a real curiosity about American reactions to all the snow and they ask, “Why do you shut down everything!”

(? – good question! The article from New York Times implies litigation is an important reason for differences between the two counties?)

In Moscow I have watched this winter and not once do I remember the temperature going above freezing. So in accordance with laws of nature: The snow does not melt and every snowflake that fell this winter, is crushed into a slab of ice 8 to 12 inches thick by the millions of feet trampling on it.

Svet has been running around happy and telling me that Spring is here and you can feel it in the air. It has not snowed in two days and that was strange to me because it seems to snow everyday here. But as the weather shows we have plenty more snow coming. :(

So I put two pictures above, that to tell what the Moscow weather is like!

This picture that is next:

Was earlier today and as you can see even though the sun is shinning, it is more like a huge spot light at night than a warm inviting sun. Nevertheless the moms bring their kids out to play and everyone goes about business and nothing ever shuts down as far as I can see.

It was -16 degrees Celsius (around +2 or +3 degrees F. ) at the time this picture was taken! Now people in Russia do not get to excited about near freezing temperatures. That just means more snow, the coming mud from hell and yes, as my Sweetie says: “Spring is in the Air!”

Windows to Russia!
comments always welcome.

PS: This is why I love Russia!

Snow…..


Update on changes on Windows to Russia!

“Windows to Russia” is now fully under the domain http://www.windowstorussia.com. The old domain has been turned into a new blog called “Kyle Keeton Talks About Russia” This title is on http://kylekeeton.com. All 1800 articles are located only under Windows to Russia and the old blog has a clean slate so to speak. It will take Google months to get it all in line again and links are broken everywhere.

I will be posting on the old domain within a week and start separating the two blogs as per purpose.

The “Windows to Russia” will become just that a Windows to Russia that only concentrates on things that affect Russia and or everyday life in Russia! The path will be narrower and more defined. Much more Russian orientated…

The “Kyle Keeton Talks About Russia” will encompass issues that are very much just my opinion and or other opinions that I either disagree or agree with. I will be expressing my viewpoint in various formats – including podcast and video blogging! This blog will have a broader base and will take up amongst other things, the thoughts I have about America and her interference on this side of the world…

Kyle Keeton Talks About Russia: Will be an open comment blog that invites you to express your self and will not be censored. Windows to Russia ended up being shown in many schools across America and I had to keep the cuss words out of the blog. Windows to Russia is a G rated blog and I want it to stay that way.

So that is all for now and hope to see some of you on the new blog under the old domain in the next few weeks.

Windows to Russia!


Update: Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko on Tuesday personally filed a lawsuit at Ukraine’s Supreme Administrative Court contesting Viktor Yanukovych’s victory in the country’s presidential elections. (Link)

On Monday, February 15 2010, Yulia Timoshenko,Prime Minister of Ukraine, announced she would challenge the results of the Ukraine Presidential election in court on Tuesday, February 16 2010.

She has until February 19 2010 in which to file a challenge to the election that was just held in Ukraine. I wrote an article about how this election is not over until Yulia says it is…

I noticed that Obama has already confirmed that Viktor Yanukovich is the new Ukraine President. If you remember that back in 2004 Putin made the mistake of confirming that Viktor Yanukovich was president then also. (Ouch that bit Putin in the butt…)

This time Russia has been very careful not to say the victory word in conjunction with Viktor Yanukovich. Because Russia knows Yulia and Yulia is going to go down fighting…

Lets hope that someone talks some sense into her and gets her to let Ukraine settle down!

Not very many someone’s, big enough to do that with Yulia – maybe Putin?

Windows to Russia!
comments always welcome.


The president of the unrecognized republic of Transdniester said they never asked for, but would not mind hosting, Russian Iskander missile complexes to counterbalance US ABMs in Romania.

“In fact we never requested anything as our armed forces are sufficient,” said Transdniester’s President Igor Smirnov on Monday during his visit to Moscow for talks on bilateral relations.

At the same he mentioned that the unrecognized republic would not mind hosting Russia’s Iskander operational-tactical missile complexes (SS-26 by NATO classification) as a response to the US plans to deploy components of their ballistic missile defense in Eastern Europe.

Looks like an interesting thought and counter balance to Romanian missiles…

I do not see much headway happening on America and Russia missiles talks! Except if you count putting defense missiles in little countries around Russia…

Windows to Russia!
comments always welcome.


Russia Today did an interview with Jacque Fresco: It was a good interview.
Jacque Fresco is a self-educated social engineer, industrial designer, author, lecturer, futurist, inventor, and the creator of The Venus Project. Fresco has worked as both designer and inventor in a wide range of fields spanning biomedical innovations and integrated social systems. He believes his ideas would maximally benefit the greatest number of people and he states some of his influence stems from his formative years during the Great Depression.

The Venus Project was started in the mid-1970s by Fresco and his partner, Roxanne Meadows. The film Future by Design was produced in 2006 describing his life and work. Fresco writes and lectures extensively on subjects ranging from the holistic design of sustainable cities, energy efficiency, natural resource management and advanced automation, focusing on the benefits it will bring to society.

This man is correct on what he says. Somethings sound a little strange to many people but once you really listen to what he says you realize that he is hitting it on the nail head and what we are is really a mess…

“Democracy is a con game, it is a word invented to outplay people, to make them accept a given institution. All institutions sing ‘we are free’. The minute you hear ‘freedom’ or ‘democracy’ – watch out, because in a truly free nation, no one has to tell you that you’re free,” Fresco said.

He believes “It is not that people are good or bad, they are raised in an aberrant or twisted environment.”

“Social change cannot come above the intellect,” said Fresco answering a question about the current economic crisis in the US, “it comes about by people suffering. And the more people are related to that, the more they lose respect for an existing government. They will seek another direction. If there are too many people who seek a new direction, then the existing government calls upon the army and police to manage society – that is called fascism.”

Windows to Russia!
comments always welcome.

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