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By John Helmer, Moscow A top secret file of papers from Vnesheconombank (VEB) has leaked into the Moscow internet, disclosing a verbatim record of recent billion-dollar project reviews by the Russian state bank of last resort. The papers reveal that the multi-billion dollar Darwendale platinum mining project announced officialLy last month in Zimbabwe has been [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow The defeat by Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk of President Petro Poroshenko in the party voting at Sunday’s Ukrainian parliamentary election reveals a shift of voter sentiment no pollster predicted beforehand – neither the independent Ukrainian polling organizations in Kiev, nor the US Government-funded surveys. On the other hand, the independent Ukrainian [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow It is easier to know what’s inside a McDonald’s hamburger than inside the corporation’s financial accounts. That’s because the type font on the internet version of the corporation’s financial reports is so small, a magnifying-glass is required at the computer screen to decipher the text; even then computer programming by McDonald’s [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow United Company Rusal, the Russian aluminium monopoly, has announced it has won a judgement of the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA) confirming its shareholding control of the Aluminium Smelter Company of Nigeria (Alscon), the only aluminium producer in the west African state. The LCIA, Rusal claims, has defeated the Nigerian [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow “The genius of you Americans is that you never made clear-cut stupid moves, only complicated stupid moves.” That was Gamal Abdel Nasser addressing a CIA man he knew well, who’d been involved in a series of plots to assassinate Nasser, all hapless. The year was 1957; that’s 57 years ago. If [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow A Washington think-tank, funded by the US Government, has discovered that at least half of all Ukrainians think that not enough force has been used to put down the Donetsk and Lugansk regions. Even more Ukrainians express confidence in the military – 66% in the pro-Kiev volunteer battalions, and 76% in [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Last Thursday the government in Beijing struck a new blow against the domination of global commodity markets by countries allied with the US in the sanctions war against Russia. The measure announced is a 3% to 6% tariff to be imposed on coal imports to China, commencing on October 15. Australia, [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow United Company Rusal, Russia’s aluminium monopoly, lost a prop for its sale revenues, debt repayments, and share price this week, when the UK Court of Appeal allowed a new aluminium stocking rule by the London Metal Exchange (LME) which Rusal has been opposing since July 2013.

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By John Helmer, Moscow Following the publication of yesterday’s report on the case of Vladimir Yevtushenkov, an insider from the Russian oil industry has communicated this analysis of what provoked Yevtushenkov’s arrest, and what will happen next. The insider has had more than 15 years of experience working with Igor Sechin, now chief executive of [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Conspiracy or screw-up — there is no shortage of complicated theories in Russia to explain why an oligarch of Vladimir Yevtushenkov’s (image, left) size is being made to run the gauntlet, quite apart from the fact that he’s probably guilty of the crimes alleged against him. What is missing is the [...]