History Repeats Itself.

Europe has the ball now. But it seems that the politicians in Europe are more concerned about their jobs than the future of Europe and are inept in a crisis situation. And the fact that they are cowards does not help.

Putin is a product of Russian mentality, of Russian Nationalism.
"A large part of the population sees happiness only in Russia's past.  They are completely disillusioned by the present and see no hope for the future.  Roughly half of Russians are trying to walk forward with their heads turned back to the past."  http://www.themoscowtimes.com/opinion/article/back-to-stalins-soviet-union/475589.html
Quarter of Russians want Stalin
Good old times
http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/sixty-years-after-death-josef-stalin-still-revered-by-some-russians-a-886933.html

At least 25% of Russians want Josef Stalin back.  Stalin is considered the most brutal dictator of the 20th century.  "It is estimated that the death toll directly attributable to Stalin’s rule amounted to some 20 million lives (on top of the estimated 20 million Soviet troops and civilians who perished in the Second World War), for a total tally of 40 million." http://www.ibtimes.com/how-many-people-did-joseph-stalin-kill-1111789
I suspect that the current Russian dictator, Vladimir Putin, looks at the famous Russian Tsar, Ivan the Terrible, and the brutal Soviet dictator, Stalin, as role models.
Putin's role model Ivan the Terrible.
Ivan the Terrible
"Similar to Stalin, Ivan IV faced a hurdle in his path to absolute power:  the corrupt boyars, aristocrats whom he could not trust.  Stalin was fascinated by the historical parallels.  In Russians' eyes Ivan the Terrible was "a man who for the first time united our country and created a powerful state."

"Stalin, too, had subjugated the power apparatus with terror and waves of bloody purges.  Where resistance was not demonstrated, he had it fabricated.  Confessions were forced out of people with torture.  Show trials against leading men from the party and the state signaled to the country from 1935 on that opposition to Stalin's politics, whether open or concealed, would not be tolerated.  On one day alone, December 12, 1938, Stalin's trials sentenced 3,167 people to death.  Even the Soviet secret police, responsible for so much of the terror, was not spared from the purges -- just like the Oprichniki, the personal police of Ivan the Terrible."

The sword of the dictator circled around army leadership as well.  In a few years, more than 10,000 officers were executed and three out of five marshals and 15 army commanders were imprisoned. 
Separatists
Pro-Russian crowd greets invaders
Putin, the little thug, dreams of greatness.  He wants to be the next Ivan, the next Stalin.  And he has almost unanimous support from the Russian people.
There is a world wide discussion on what to do to rein in Putin, to stop his expansionist adventures.
Economic sanctions.  I think Obama and the EU have the right approach.  Broad economic sanctions will hurt the Russian economy and the average Russian.  So what?  Who cares?  Not Putin.  He will blame the West.  And Russian people are used to suffering and blaming the West.  These people have been brainwashed for generations.
Russia is a Kleptocracy.  And the sanctions should be applied to the oligarchs, the ones that help and support Putin.  And to Putin personally - he has money all around the world.
And it is a good idea to cut high-tech military exports to Russia and it needs to be done.
I am afraid that economic sanctions will not stop Putin from "fulfilling his destiny to return Russia to her former glory". 
Military support.  If the EU and the US will provide Ukraine with a loan guarantee then Ukraine can purchase weapons from the West.  That will not deter Russia from invading Eastern Ukraine but it will make this adventure painful, just like it happened in Afghanistan. 
The bottom line is that the world should have learned history lessons from WWII and be proactive in preventing WWIII.  The world cannot just stand by and talk tough.  Words from the West mean nothing to Russians, mean nothing to Putin.  But actions might.
Hitlers annexation of Czechoslovakia.
German-speaking Czechs greet Hitler
Here is a scary similarity between the 1938 Hitler invasion into Czechoslovakia and Putin's impending invasion in Ukraine.  "Czech Sude­ten­land was offered up to Ger­many on a platter of appease­ment after Hitler loudly com­plained that Czechs dis­cri­mi­nated against its Ger­man-speaking citi­zens.  Ever the master of in­trigue and deceit, Hitler set out to en­courage in­ter­nal un­rest in the rest of Czecho­slo­va­kia.  He focused on the east­ern pro­vinces of Slo­va­kia and Ruthenia, which enjoyed a fair degree of auto­nomy from the cen­tral govern­ment in Prague, en­couraging them to de­mand even greater inde­pen­dence." http://ww2days.com/hitler-invades-czechoslovakia-2.html  
History shows that any occupation is doomed.  Some last longer than others but all occupations fail...all of them.  The same facts tell us that if people want to get rid of the occupiers they will, sooner or later.
The problem is that in order to stop the occupation, immense resources and loss of life occur if we wait too long.  Like a WWII example:  Europe and the Soviet Union tried to appease Hitler with disastrous results.
Munich Pact
Hitler and Chamberlain.  One of them is a fool.
"On this day in 1938, Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, French Premier Edouard Daladier, and British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain signed the Munich Pact, which sealed the fate of Czechoslovakia, virtually handing it over to Germany in the name of peace.  Upon returning to Britain, Chamberlain would declare that the meeting had achieved "peace in our time."
"Although the agreement was to give into Hitler's hands only the Sudentenland, that part of Czechoslovakia where 3 million ethnic Germans lived; it also handed over to the Nazi war machine 66 percent of Czechoslovakia's coal, 70 percent of its iron and steel, and 70 percent of its electrical power" http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/hitler-appeased-at-munich
Europe has the ball now.  But it seems that the politicians in Europe are more concerned about their jobs than the future of Europe and are inept in a crisis situation.  And the fact that they are cowards does not help.
Putin-is-Hitler

Twilight Dreams.

Sometimes at dusk when the world becomes surreal, filled with a soft ocean breeze and strange fleeting, changing colors, the reality changes as I am walking on the beach that is strangely the same and yet so alien, so different.

Dreams and reality A quiet peaceful evening.  We are walking slowly on the beach.  Late sunset, soft waves reflect the colored remnants of daylight.  Dark silhouettes of birds in the purple background of the low and tired sun.
Thoughts and dreams envelop me becoming one with this mysterious late dusk.
What was here in the past?  Thousand of years ago.  Was somebody walking on this beach just like we are now?  I am trying to feel, to see them.  How did they look?
In the twilight I see shades of the past, of the future.  Slowly floating, changing, mysteriously shifting shapes.  What was here a million years ago?  What does the future hold?  Will somebody walk here, watching the sunset, a million years from now?  Will people be here on this planet?  Some intelligent beings?
Maybe not people, some strange creatures that evolve from us, humans.
There are thoughts that past, present and future coexist.  That there is a multitude of realities.
Thoughts about past and future
Twilight dreams
My imagination unites the realities and I can see past the present and future in the changing shades and colors of twilight.  We are all walking on the beach watching the dying sun's last purple projection of clouds.  Who are they, these creatures?  What are their dreams, hopes, worries.  Do they think about us?
Sometimes at dusk when the world becomes surreal, filled with a soft ocean breeze and strange fleeting, changing colors, the reality changes as I am walking on the beach that is strangely the same and yet so alien, so different.
I am walking on the beach in a different time, in the past long gone.  Or maybe in the future.  Thousands of years from my time.  They don't see me, these beings walking beside me.
I do not want to separate dream and reality.  Their reality is real for them.  Do they feel us?  Think about other times?  Do they feel the mystery of the world?  Are they fascinated by it?
In Ray Bradbury's, “Martian Chronicles”, Human and Martian meet on Mars in a strange half dream, half reality.  Each in their own reality.  The Human and Martian cannot physically touch each other – they are just a shade, a mirage for each other.
The Human sees a dead planet with remnants of civilization long gone.  The Martian sees a vibrant and busy world at the height of his civilization.
And I wonder if millions of years from now our world, our dreams, our thoughts will still be here, somewhere in some form, a non-physical form, but in some other reality, real nevertheless.
Time and reality
Days of Past and Future
Have others, some intelligent beings, visited our world in the distant past?  Where did they come from?  What brought them here?  What secrets does Earth hold about epochs of another time?
Why are we here?  The oldest question.
Our lives are short.  Just one breath of the Universe and we, humans, have come and gone.
What great civilizations, what life was roaming the Universe millions, billions of years ago?  These questions, the mystery of existence in different times, other realities are fascinating to me.  What life will be millions, billions years from now after humanity is long gone?  And forgotten.  Forgotten by whom?

Martial Chronicles.
Mirage on Mars
Archeologists are finding old ruins, remnants of past cultures, civilizations vanished in the currents of time, a mirage now.  Scarce remnants of peoples who lived and loved and hated.  Their dreams, their struggles and aspirations are nothing but dust.  A thin layer of dust.
People whose reality, whose civilization was the most important in the universe.  Some were rich and powerful, some poor and powerless.  All that is left is just a layer of dust.
I wonder if, thousands of years from my time, archaeologists will find some artifacts in the dusty desert and will try to understand, to imagine what life was like in those long forgotten times.  And how the people of a long vanished civilization, us, lived and died.
Rich and powerful, poor and powerless, all equal.  Just a layer of dust in the desert.

Fascism is not a German Word.

The Ukrainian government is concerned that if it uses force against the Russian militia, it will give Putin an excuse to invade Ukraine. Guess what: if Ukraine does not use force, it will make things much easier for Putin. His provocateurs are doing just fine taking over the Eastern Ukraine.

The current situation in Ukraine is sadly similar to the situation in the Soviet Union when Nazi Germany attacked it on June 22, 1941. 
Below is some history:
Soviet army did not respond
Slaughter

“For over eight hours after the German assault had begun in the early hours of 22 June, he (Stalin) still continued to restrict his troops’ response, hoping in vain that the attacks were an unsanctioned effort by German generals to provoke war.  In keeping with this fear, a military dispatch (issued about 12:30 A.M.) ordered Soviet commanders “not to give way to provocative actions of any kind which might produce major complications.  “Similarly, the general in charge of the Baltic region gave instructions at about 2:30 A.M. that included the following phrases:  “In the case of provocative action by the Germans, fire not to be opened.  In the event of flights by German aircraft over our territory, to make no demonstration and until such time as enemy aircraft undertake military operations, no fire to be opened on them.  In the event of strong enemy forces undertaking offensive operations, to destroy them.  “At 7:15 A.M., Stalin agreed to a directive telling the troops to attack the enemy and destroy him, but even then, hoping against hope, he restricted the order to Soviet territory and admonished the soldiers not to cross the frontier line; still, in other words, he issued no declaration of war or general mobilization orders.  Only at noon did the Soviet foreign minister declare war.  Soviet forces, the German chief of staff recorded in his diary, were “tactically surprised along the entire front.”  Their unreadiness permitted the Germans to win an immense initial advantage, one that cost the Soviet Union uncounted millions of lives over the next four years.  http://www.danielpipes.org/2890/appendix-b-stalins-blind-spot

Aggression in Eastern Ukraine
Putin’s Ambassador to Ukraine
"Pro-Russian separatists on Monday ignored an ultimatum to leave occupied government buildings in eastern Ukraine while another group of rebels attacked a police headquarters as a threatened military offensive by government forces failed to materialize."  http://www.cnbc.com/id/101579675
The Ukrainian government is concerned that if it uses force against the Russian militia, it will give Putin an excuse to invade Ukraine.  Guess what:  if Ukraine does not use force, it will make things much easier for Putin.  His provocateurs are doing just fine taking over the Eastern Ukraine.  
There has to be a strong response - Ukrainian and strong non-military actions from the rest of the world.  Because “Fascism” is not a German word.  And Russian Fascism is not any better than German or Italian Fascism.

A frog in the water or erosion of Democracy in America.

Our American Democracy is for sale. But It is still not too bad. We are not the worst. We’ve got weapons and the world’s greatest military machine. Our education is falling behind but it is not the worst. We’ve got a lot of sick people but we are managing, we are not the worst in the world. It’s OK…still. Yes…if you are a frog.

Our changing country
Everything is just fine!
The premise is that if a frog is placed in boiling water, it will jump out, but if it is placed in cold water that is slowly heated, it will not perceive the danger and will be cooked to death.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boiling_frog
 10 years before the fall of the Soviet Union, my wife and I came to the conclusion that we didn't have a future in this country and we then decided to emigrate to America.  Anna was 24, I was 30.
 We came to America in 1979 as a young couple with a one-year-old daughter to build a better life for ourselves and our children.  It was not easy - we started from scratch...but we did it. Our two younger kids were born here in America.  Only here in our new country we were able live without a heavy weight on our shoulders – Soviet government-sponsored Antisemitism, constant propaganda and heavy censorship.
 But we are happy here, our three children are successful and the USA is their country.  We are Americans – first, second and now third generation - our grandchildren.
 We all love this country, this great Democracy.  And that is the reason I decided to write this letter.  I am worried.  Worried and scared.  And concerned about the future of America.
 It pains me to see our democracy disintegrating and becoming a Plutocracy.
 There are many worrisome trends that are endangering the future of America as a democratic nation.
 Redistribution of wealth.
 The rich are getting much richer.
 The middle class is disappearing, being destroyed.
 The poor are getting poorer.
 http://www.blue-point-trading.com/bluepoint-daily-market-view-%E2%80%93-february-25-2011
 The money flows to the few on the top.  And considering that, thanks to the Supreme court, all regulations are removed.  If you're rich and want to give money to a lot of political campaigns, the Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that you can.
 The 5-4 ruling eliminated limits on how much money people can donate in total in one election season. http://www.cnn.com/2014/04/02/politics/scotus-political-donor-limits/
 Do as I say not as I do – that is what we tell the world.
 America lost its moral standing in the world in part thanks to the Bush W. administration's reckless, illegal and disastrous war in Iraq.
 Poverty.  The U.S. poverty rate, about 17 percent, is third worst among the advanced nations tracked by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.  In that sample, only Turkey and Mexico are worse.
 Education.  American 15-year-old score below the average for advanced nations in math and science literacy.  But don't worry, our nation's future leaders are still ahead of their peers in Mexico, Turkey, Greece and a few other places.
 Health.  United States ranks 27th in the healthcare of its citizens.  Life expectancy in America is below the average for 30 advanced countries measured by the OECD, and the obesity rate in America is the worst among those 30 countries, by far.  Even with Obamacare there will be millions without health insurance because 24 states are refusing to expand Medicaid.
Well-being.  In the United Nations' Human Development Index, which attempts to measure the overall well-being of citizens throughout the world, the United States ranks 13th.
 Happiness.  The United States ranks 11th in the OECD's measure of "life satisfaction" - behind Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands and the other usual suspects.  That's not bad, but the United States is one of only five countries where life satisfaction is going down, not up.  http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/flowchart/2009/10/26/9-signs-of-america-in-decline

But it is not just numbers and statistics.  I can see it every day.  I can feel it every day.
The rise of mindless conservatism and the rejection of science. America is falling behind in space exploration, in basic science
Militant ultra-conservative religious movements attempting to limit the rights of anybody who does not conform to their views.
Attempts by the conservative movement to cut funds for public education.  
In a country founded by immigrants and built by immigrants, the Republican party touts anti-immigration policies.  Hate and bigotry is encouraged by the Tea Party. Also American universities are still world class, the best and the brightest foreign students are not encouraged to remain in the US after graduation and go back to their countries to compete with us.
 And above all - Big Money. An enormous concentration of wealth by the few. The idiotic Supreme Court removing all restrictions on elections influenced by Big Money.  Our American Democracy is for sale. But It is still not too bad. We are not the worst. We've got weapons and the world's greatest military machine. Our education is falling behind but it is not the worst. We've got a lot of sick people but we are managing, we are not the worst in the world. It's OK...still.  Yes...if you are a frog.

CNN – New and newer breaking…news?

CNN degradation from a news organization into a gossip and pointless opinions outfit.


CNN unreality reporting
Flight 370… Flight 370… Flight 370..HELP!

CNN "reporting"
Daily Wisdom
CNN “reporters” are in need of mental health counseling.  It has been reported that many including Wolf Blitzer and Anderson Cooper are being diagnosed with PTSD.  One of the symptoms:  they cannot stop talking about the Malaysian flight 370 disappearance.  At home, in the toilet, even during sex they are unable to stop talking aloud about aliens and terrorists and black holes, oceans of garbage and toy planes.  Families are ruined, children are being abandoned, partnerships falling apart.
It is getting so bad that CNN is working on the sequel to the current “flight 370 crush into the 4th dimension” unreality show.
The sequel:  "Flight 370 and CNN Mental Health" is in the early stages of production right now.  The genius of this show - it will be used as therapy for the poor unreality reporters being affected.  “It may just save my sanity”, said Wolf Blitzer.  “I am desperate.”
So stay tuned my friends.  The freak show some call “CNN Reporting” continues.