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WADA could not stop Russian swimmers from winning six gold medals at the 2018 FINA World Championships in China

WADA board of directors is predominantly governed by US, Canadian, British and Australian “experts”.




Sports should not be politicized, yet global sports have increasingly become an arena of global politics. In spite of the “Russian doping scandal”, instigated by WADA to block Russian athletes from participating in international competitions, Russian sports teams were very successful in 2018, winning 146 gold medals. To name just a few, the Russian swimmers won six gold medals at the FINA World Swimming Championships, which took place in the Chinese city of Hangzhou from December 11 to 16, 2018. Meanwhile, WADA experts visited Moscow twice to inspect Russia’s former anti-doping laboratory. The inspection results have not been published yet. Nevertheless, Russia wants to take part in the 2020 Olympics, and Russian sports authorities are proposing financial awards for Russian athletes who will bring back gold.

Olga Golodets, Russian Deputy Prime Minister for sports, noted that Russian athletes won 146 gold medals in 2018. She said at a board meeting of the Sports Ministry that “the outgoing year of 2018 was a success for Russian sports. Russian athletes won at various international tournaments a total of 146 gold medals, a brilliant result” (TASS, 21.12.2018).

In November and December 2018, so-called experts from the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) visited Moscow twice to inspect the anti-doping laboratory in Moscow. The five-person delegation of experts, led by Dr. Jose Antonio Pascual who is a research scientist and academic in Barcelona, arrived in Moscow on December 17 to access data of the Moscow anti-doping lab, as required by WADA’s Executive Committee decision of September 20.

They retrieved data on doping samples analysis of Russian athletes for the period between 2011 and 2015, kept at the former facility of the Moscow anti-doping lab. The results have not been published yet, and WADA announced that their “experts” want to come back to Moscow for a third time at the end of the year. Granting access to LIMS (the Laboratory Information Management System) data is one of the key conditions for the reinstatement of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency RUSADA (TASS, 21.12.2018).

It needs to be noted that the WADA board of directors is predominantly governed by US, Canadian, British and Australian “experts”, with a few other Euopeans sprinkled in between. No Russians and Chinese are included, although Russia and China together form the greatest landmass on earth and have the largest population of the globe, if their numbers are combined. Maybe WADA should reconsider and restructure its board of directors for the future, including “experts” from the Russian Federation and the People’s Republic of China as well?

The last six gold medals in 2018 were brought home by Russian swimmers taking part in the FINA Swimming World Championships in Hangzhou, China. On the 13th of December, Kirill Prigoda won gold in men’s 200m breaststroke. He covered the distance in 2 minutes 0.16 seconds, setting a new world record (TASS, 13.12.2018). Kirill Gennadievich Prigoda was born in Saint Petersburg, on the 29th of December 1995. His father was a four-times Olympic medalist in swimming, his mother became world champion in 200 m breaststroke. Besides swimming, the young man studied Strategic Management at Peter the Great Saint Petersburg Polytechnic University.

The 14th of December was a very lucky day for Russia, as three Russian swimmers were able to grab gold in China. Kliment Kolesnikov won the 100 medley, swimming the distance in 50.63 seconds (TASS, 14.12.2018). Kliment Andreyevich Kolesnikov was born in Moscow, on the 9th of July 2000. The Russian swimmer won three gold medals at the 2018 European Championships and established a new 50m backstroke world record. He was chosen the flag bearer for Russia at the 2018 Summer Youth Olympics in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he received six gold medals.

On the 14th of December, Vladimir Morozov was also successful in Hangzhou. He won gold in the 50m freestyle, clocking the distance in 20.33 seconds (TASS, 14.12.2018). Vladimir Viktorovich Morozov was born in Novosibirsk, on the 16th of June 1992. At the FINA Swimming World Championships in Istanbul, he earned gold in the 50m and 100m freestyle.

In 2016, WADA harrassed him, naming the young Russian swimmer as an athlete who had “benefited from the disappearing positive methodology as part of a Russian state-run doping programme”. So FINA declared him ineligible for the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil. Vladimir Morozov, however, appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), which sided with him. On the 4th of August 2016, he was cleared by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to compete and took part in the Rio Summer Olympics (, 04.08.2016).

The third very successful Russian swimmer in China was Evgeny Rylov. He even won gold twice in single events, on the 14th and 16th of December. He was first in men’s 50m backstroke with 22.58 seconds, and two days later in men’s 200m backstroke with a time of 1:47.02 (TASS, 14. 12. 2018 / 16.12.2018). The 22-year-old crowned his career with a third gold medal for the 4x50m medley relay, in which he took part. Evgeny Mikhailovich Rylov was born in Novotroitsk, on the 23rd of September 1996. He had already received three gold medals at the 2014 Summer Youth Olympics in Nanjing. Another gold medal followed at the 2017 Fina World Championships in Budapest.

The sixth and last gold medal was brought home to Russia by four men who won the 4×50 medley relay in Hangzhou with a time of 1:30.54. Kliment Kolesnikov, Oleg Kostin, Evgeny Rylov and Mikhail Vekovishev participated in the winning quartet.

This goes to show that the Russian Federation will not be contained in sports by envious western countries. The human reservoir of talented young people is huge. They do not need doping to set world records. Sports training in Russia has a long, successful tradition. The former Soviet Union and now the Russian Federation was and remains one of the leading sports nations of the world.

To further ensure that young athletes will train hard, the Russian sports authorities are proposing financial awards for winning gold at the 2020 Olympics. “A Russian athlete winning gold at the Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo may be awarded by the government with a sum of four million rubles. The 2020 Summer Olympic Games will be held in Japan between July 24 and August 9, with a total of 339 sets of medals to be contested in 50 disciplines” (TASS, 21.12.2018).

Hopefully, Russia’s differences with WADA will be sorted out by then and young Russian talents will get a chance of competing in Tokyo.

Olivia Kroth: The journalist and author of four books lives in Moscow.

Her blog:

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Olivia Kroth

So sad!
Russia’s curler Krushelnitsky submits appeal with CAS against four-year suspension
Sport December 27, 2018
On February 19, the Anti-Doping Division of the Court of Arbitration for Sport opened a case against Russia’s curling athlete Alexander Krushelnitsky for a doping violation

Olivia Kroth

More sadness!

No evidence provided to prove Russian biathletes violated doping rules — ambassador
Sport December 15, 2018
The Austrian police earlier accused Russian biathletes and national team’s specialists of violating the anti-doping rules during the 2017 World Biathlon Championship in Hochfilzen

Olivia Kroth

All is well that ends well? Let’s hope so. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) continues its work with the Russian authorities to retrieve data on doping samples of Russian athletes for the period 2011-2015 stored at the Moscow Anti-Doping Laboratory, WADA’s press service announced to TASS. Russia’s Sports Minister Pavel Kolobkov said on Saturday that the Russian authorities and WADA had agreed on the details of the transfer of data on test samples stored at the Moscow Anti-Doping Laboratory for the period of 2011-2015. Pursuant to WADA’s requirements for RUSADA’s reinstatement, Russia is due to provide the lab’s data to… Read more »

Olivia Kroth

Sir Craig Reedie, another British Secret Service member harassing Russia?

MOSCOW, January 1. /TASS/. World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) President Craig Reedie is disappointed over the organization’s failure to get the data of the Moscow anti-doping laboratory by the December 31 deadline, the WADA press office reported on its website on Tuesday.



Is the Violent Dismemberment of Russia Official US Policy?

Neocons make the case that the West should not only seek to contain “Moscow’s imperial ambitions” but to actively seek the dismemberment of Russia as a whole.

The Duran



Authored by Erik D’Amato via The Ron Paul Institute for Peace & Prosperity:

If there’s one thing everyone in today’s Washington can agree on, it’s that whenever an official or someone being paid by the government says something truly outrageous or dangerous, there should be consequences, if only a fleeting moment of media fury.

With one notable exception: Arguing that the US should be quietly working to promote the violent disintegration and carving up of the largest country on Earth.

Because so much of the discussion around US-Russian affairs is marked by hysteria and hyperbole, you are forgiven for assuming this is an exaggeration. Unfortunately it isn’t. Published in the Hill under the dispassionate title “Managing Russia’s dissolution,” author Janusz Bugajski makes the case that the West should not only seek to contain “Moscow’s imperial ambitions” but to actively seek the dismemberment of Russia as a whole.

Engagement, criticism and limited sanctions have simply reinforced Kremlin perceptions that the West is weak and predictable. To curtail Moscow’s neo-imperialism a new strategy is needed, one that nourishes Russia’s decline and manages the international consequences of its dissolution.

Like many contemporary cold warriors, Bugajski toggles back and forth between overhyping Russia’s might and its weaknesses, notably a lack of economic dynamism and a rise in ethnic and regional fragmentation.But his primary argument is unambiguous: That the West should actively stoke longstanding regional and ethnic tensions with the ultimate aim of a dissolution of the Russian Federation, which Bugajski dismisses as an “imperial construct.”

The rationale for dissolution should be logically framed: In order to survive, Russia needs a federal democracy and a robust economy; with no democratization on the horizon and economic conditions deteriorating, the federal structure will become increasingly ungovernable…

To manage the process of dissolution and lessen the likelihood of conflict that spills over state borders, the West needs to establish links with Russia’s diverse regions and promote their peaceful transition toward statehood.

Even more alarming is Bugajski’s argument that the goal should not be self-determination for breakaway Russian territories, but the annexing of these lands to other countries. “Some regions could join countries such as Finland, Ukraine, China and Japan, from whom Moscow has forcefully appropriated territories in the past.”

It is, needless to say, impossible to imagine anything like this happening without sparking a series of conflicts that could mirror the Yugoslav Wars. Except in this version the US would directly culpable in the ignition of the hostilities, and in range of 6,800 Serbian nuclear warheads.

So who is Janusz Bugajski, and who is he speaking for?

The author bio on the Hill’s piece identifies him as a senior fellow at the Center for European Policy Analysis, a Washington, D.C. think-tank. But CEPA is no ordinary talk shop: Instead of the usual foundations and well-heeled individuals, its financial backers seem to be mostly arms of the US government, including the Department of State, the Department of Defense, the US Mission to NATO, the US-government-sponsored National Endowment for Democracy, as well as as veritable who’s who of defense contractors, including Raytheon, Bell Helicopter, BAE Systems, Lockheed Martin and Textron. Meanwhile, Bugajski chairs the South-Central Europe area studies program at the Foreign Service Institute of the US Department of State.

To put it in perspective, it is akin to a Russian with deep ties to the Kremlin and arms-makers arguing that the Kremlin needed to find ways to break up the United States and, if possible, have these breakaway regions absorbed by Mexico and Canada. (A scenario which alas is not as far-fetched as it might have been a few years ago; many thousands in California now openly talk of a “Calexit,” and many more in Mexico of a reconquista.)

Meanwhile, it’s hard to imagine a quasi-official voice like Bugajski’s coming out in favor of a similar policy vis-a-vis China, which has its own restive regions, and which in geopolitical terms is no more or less of a threat to the US than Russia. One reason may be that China would consider an American call for secession by the Tibetans or Uyghurs to be a serious intrusion into their internal affairs, unlike Russia, which doesn’t appear to have noticed or been ruffled by Bugajski’s immodest proposal.

Indeed, just as the real scandal in Washington is what’s legal rather than illegal, the real outrage in this case is that few or none in DC finds Bugajski’s virtual declaration of war notable.

But it is. It is the sort of provocation that international incidents are made of, and if you are a US taxpayer, it is being made in your name, and it should be among your outrages of the month.

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Vladimir Putin visits Serbia, as NATO encircles the country it attacked in 1999 (Video)

The Duran – News in Review – Episode 171.

Alex Christoforou



The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss Russian President Vladimir Putin’s official visit to Serbia.

Putin met with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic to further develop bilateral trade and economic relations, as well as discuss pressing regional issues including the possibility of extending the Turkish Stream gas pipeline into Serbia, and the dangerous situation around Kosovo.

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Via RT

Russian President Vladimir Putin got a hero’s welcome in Belgrade. The one-day visit to the last holdout against NATO’s ambitions in the Balkans may have been somewhat short on substance, but was certainly loaded with symbolism.

Even before he landed, the Russian leader was given an honor guard by Serbian air force MiGs, a 2017 gift from Moscow to replace those destroyed by NATO during the 1999 air campaign that ended with the occupation of Serbia’s province of Kosovo. Russia has refused to recognize Kosovo’s US-backed declaration of independence, while the US and EU have insisted on it.

Upon landing, Putin began his first official trip of 2019 by paying respects to the Soviet soldiers who died liberating Belgrade from Nazi occupation in 1944. While most Serbians haven’t forgotten their historical brotherhood in arms with Russia, it did not hurt to remind the West just who did the bulk of the fighting against Nazi Germany back in World War II.

After official talks with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, Putin visited the Church of St. Sava, the grand Orthodox basilica set on the spot where the Ottoman Turks torched the remains of the first Serbian archbishop back in 1594, in an effort to maintain power.

Sava, whose brother Stefan became the “first-crowned” king of medieval Serbia, was responsible for setting up the autocephalous Serbian Orthodox Church exactly eight centuries ago this year. For all its own troubles, the Serbian Church has sided with Moscow in the current Orthodox schism over Ukraine.

Russian artisans have been working on the grand mosaic inside the basilica, and asked Putin to complete the design by placing the last three pieces, in the colors of the Russian flag.

Whether by sheer coincidence or by design, Putin also weighed in on Serbia’s culture war, giving interviews ahead of his visit to two daily newspapers that still publish in Serbian Cyrillic – while the majority of the press, whether controlled by the West or by Vucic, prefers the Latin variant imported from Croatia.

Western media usually refer to Serbia as a “Russian ally.” While this is true in a historical and cultural sense, there is no formal military alliance between Moscow and Belgrade. Serbia officially follows the policy of military neutrality, with its armed forces taking part in exercises alongside both Russian and NATO troops.

This is a major source of irritation for NATO, which seeks dominion over the entire Balkans region. Most recently, the alliance extended membership to Montenegro in 2017 without putting the question to a referendum. It is widely expected that “Northern Macedonia” would get an invitation to NATO as soon as its name change process is complete – and that was arranged by a deal both Macedonia and Greece seem to have been pressured into by Washington.

That would leave only Serbia outside the alliance – partly, anyway, since NATO has a massive military base in the disputed province of Kosovo, and basically enjoys special status in that quasi-state. Yet despite Belgrade’s repeated declarations of Serbia wanting to join the EU, Brussels and Washington have set recognition of Kosovo as the key precondition – and no Serbian leader has been able to deliver on that just yet, though Vucic has certainly tried.

Putin’s repeated condemnations of NATO’s 1999 attack, and Russian support for Serbia’s territorial integrity guaranteed by the UN Security Council Resolution 1244, have made him genuinely popular among the Serbs, more so than Vucic himself. Tens of thousands of people showed up in Belgrade to greet the Russian president.

While Vucic’s critics have alleged that many of them were bused in by the government – which may well be true, complete with signs showing both Vucic and Putin – there is no denying the strong pro-Russian sentiment in Serbia, no matter how hard Integrity Initiative operatives have tried.

One of the signs spotted in Belgrade reportedly said “one of 300 million,” referring to the old Serbian joke about there being “300 million of us – and Russians.” However, it is also a send-up of the slogan used by current street protesters against Vucic. For the past six weeks, every Saturday, thousands of people have marched through Belgrade, declaring themselves “1 of 5 million” after Vucic said he wouldn’t give in to their demands even if “five million showed up.”

The opposition Democrats accuse him of corruption, nepotism, mismanagement, cronyism – all the sins they themselves have plenty of experience with during their 12-year reign following Serbia’s color revolution. Yet they’ve had to struggle for control of the marches with the nationalists, who accuse Vucic of preparing to betray Kosovo and want “him to go away, but [Democrats] not come back.”

There is plenty of genuine discontent in Serbia with Vucic, who first came to power in 2012 on a nationalist-populist platform but quickly began to rule as a pro-NATO liberal. It later emerged that western PR firms had a key role in his party’s “makeover” from Radicals to Progressives. Yet his subsequent balancing act between NATO and Russia has infuriated both the NGOs and politicians in Serbia beholden to Western interests, and US diplomats charged with keeping the Balkans conquered.

Washington is busy with its own troubles these days, so there was no official comment to Putin’s visit from the State Department – only a somewhat pitiful and tone-deaf tweet by Ambassador Kyle Scott, bemoaning the lack of punishment for $1 million in damages to the US Embassy during a 2008 protest against Kosovo “independence.” Yet as far as Western media outlets are concerned, why Moscow seems to be vastly more popular than Washington on the streets of Belgrade nonetheless remains a mystery.

By Nebojsa Malic


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Curious Bedfellows: The Neocon And Progressive Alliance To Destroy Donald Trump

The neocon metamorphosis is nearly complete as many of the neocons, who started out as Democrats, have returned home, where they are being welcomed for their hardline foreign policy viewpoint.



Authored by Philip Giraldi via

The Roman poet Ovid’s masterful epic The Metamorphoses includes the memorable opening line regarding the poem’s central theme of transformation. He wrote In nova fert animus mutatas dicere formas corpora, which has been translated as “Of shapes transformed to bodies strange, I purpose to entreat…”

Ovid framed his narrative around gods, heroes and quasi-historical events but if he were around today, he would no doubt be fascinated by the many transformations of the group that has defined itself as neoconservative.The movement began in a cafeteria in City College of New York in the 1930s, where a group of radical Jewish students would meet to discuss politics and developments in Europe. Many of the founders were from the far left, communists of the Trotskyite persuasion, which meant that they believed in permanent global revolution led by a vanguard party. The transformation into conservatives of a neo-persuasion took place when they were reportedly “mugged by reality” into accepting that the standard leftist formulae were not working to transform the world rapidly enough. As liberal hawks, they then hitched their wagon to the power of the United States to bring about transformation by force if necessary and began to infiltrate institutions like the Pentagon to give themselves the tools to achieve their objectives, which included promotion of regime change wars, full spectrum global dominance and unconditional support for Israel.

The neocons initially found a home with Democratic Senator Henry “Scoop” Jackson, but they moved on in the 1970s and 1980s to prosper under Ronald Reagan as well as under Democrat Bill Clinton. Their ability to shape policy peaked under George W. Bush, when they virtually ran the Pentagon and were heavily represented in both the national security apparatus and in the White House. They became adept at selling their mantra of “strong national defense” to whomever was buying, including to President Obama, even while simultaneously complaining about his administration’s “weakness.”

The neoconservatives lined up behind Hillary Clinton in 2016, appalled by Donald Trump’s condemnation of their centerpiece war in Iraq and even more so by his pledge to end the wars in Asia and nation-building projects while also improving relations with the Russians. They worked actively against the Republican candidate both before he was nominated and elected and did everything they could to stop him, including libeling him as a Russian agent.

When Trump was elected, it, therefore, seemed that the reign of the neocons had ended, but chameleonlike, they have changed shape and are now ensconced both in some conservative as well as in an increasing number of progressive circles in Washington and in the media. Against all odds, they have even captured key posts in the White House itself with the naming of John Bolton as National Security Adviser and Mike Pompeo as Secretary of State. Bolton’s Chief of Staff is Fred Fleitz, a leading neocon and Islamophobe while last week Trump added Iran hawk Richard Goldberg to the National Security Council as director for countering Iranian weapons of mass destruction. Goldberg is an alumnus of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, which is the leading neocon think tank calling incessantly for war with Iran.

Meanwhile, the neocon metamorphosis is nearly complete as many of the neocons, who started out as Democrats, have returned home, where they are being welcomed for their hardline foreign policy viewpoint. Glenn Greenwald reports that, based on polling of party supporters, the Democrats have gone full-Hillary and are now by far more hawkish than the Republicans, unwilling to leave either Syria or Afghanistan.

The neocon survival and rejuvenation is particularly astonishing in that they have been wrong about virtually everything, most notably the catastrophic Iraq War. They have never been held accountable for anything, though one should note that accountability is not a prominent American trait, at least since Vietnam. What is important is that neocon views have been perceived by the media and punditry as being part of the Establishment consensus, which provides them with access to programming all across the political spectrum. That is why neocon standard-bearers like Bill Kristol and Max Boot have been able to move effortlessly from Fox News to MSNBC where they are fêted by the likes of Rachel Maddow. They applauded the Iraq War when the Establishment was firmly behind it and are now trying to destroy Donald Trump’s presidency because America’s elite is behind that effort.

Indeed, the largely successful swing by the neocons from right to left has in some ways become more surreal, as an increasing number of progressive spokesmen and institutions have lined up behind their perpetual warfare banner. The ease with which the transformation took place reveals, interestingly, that the neocons have no real political constituency apart from voters who feel threatened and respond by supporting perpetual war, but they do share many common interests with the so-called liberal interventionists. Neocons see a global crisis for the United States defined in terms of power while the liberals see the struggle as a moral imperative, but the end result is the same: intervention by the United States. This fusion is clearly visible in Washington, where the Clintons’ Center for American Progress (CAP) is now working on position papers with the neoconservative American Enterprise Institute (AEI).

One of the most active groups attacking President Trump is “Republicans for the Rule of Law,” founded by Bill Kristol in January 2018, as a component of Defending Democracy Together(DDT), a 501(c)4 lobbying group that also incorporates projects called The Russia Tweets and Republicans Against Putin. Republicans Against Putin promotes the view that President Trump is not “stand[ing] up to [Vladimir] Putin” and calls for more aggressive investigation of the Russian role in the 2016 election.

DDT is a prime example of how the neoconservatives and traditional liberal interventionists have come together as it is in part funded by Pierre Omidyar, the billionaire co-founder of eBay who has provided DDT with $600,000 in two grants through his Democracy Fund Voice, also a 501(c)4. Omidyar is a political liberal who has given millions of dollars to progressive organizations and individuals since 1999. Indeed, he is regarded as a top funder of liberal causesin the United States and even globally together with Michael Bloomberg and George Soros. His Democracy Fund awarded $9 million in grants in 2015 alone.

Last week, the Omidyar-Kristol connection may have deepened with an announcement regarding the launch of the launch of a new webzine The Bulwark, which would clearly be at least somewhat intended to take the place of the recently deceased Weekly Standard. It is promoting itself as the center of the “Never Trump Resistance” and it is being assumed that at least some of the Omidyar money is behind it.

Iranian-born Omidyar’s relationship with Kristol is clearly based on the hatred that the two share regarding Donald Trump.

Omidyar has stated that Trump is a “dangerous authoritarian demagogue… endorsing Donald Trump immediately disqualifies you from any position of public trust.”

He has tweeted that Trump suffers from “failing mental capacity” and is both “corrupt and incapacitated.”

Omidyar is what he is – a hardcore social justice warrior who supports traditional big government and globalist liberal causes, most of which are antithetical to genuine conservatives. But what is interesting about the relationship with Kristol is that it also reveals what the neoconservatives are all about. Kristol and company have never been actual conservatives on social issues, a topic that they studiously avoid, and their foreign policy is based on two principles: creating a state of perpetual war based on fearmongering about foreign enemies while also providing unlimited support for Israel. Kristol hates Trump because he threatens the war agenda while Omidyar despises the president for traditional progressive reasons. That hatred is the tie that binds and it is why Bill Kristol, a man possessing no character and values whatsoever, is willing to take Pierre Omidyar’s money while Pierre is quite happy to provide it to destroy a common enemy, the President of the United States of America.

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