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By John Helmer, Moscow Anne Applebaum, wife of the ex-Polish Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski, has suffered a 42% drop in her earnings last year, since the war against Russia, which Sikorski and she (Siklebaum, for short) have promoted in London, Warsaw and Washington, lost the big money backing it drew in 2013. The Applebaum loss [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow In the royal courts of olden times, the king’s favourite was showered with rewards for making the king happy, not for making the court or country happy with the king. PR was not what Barbara de Villiers did for Charles II, nor Madame de Pompadour for Louis XV. At United Company [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow The old saw about how to make a small fortune can be adapted in Vitaly Mashitsky’s case, but you must still start with a large fortune — he’ll take care of the rest. In a surprise to the amber industry of Kaliningrad, where about 95% of the world’s supply of amber [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow The largest retailers in Russia are achieving revenue and profit growth at the same time as Russian consumers are suffering from falling wages, higher prices, and loss of confidence, which has dwindled to lows not recorded for the past twenty years. How the expansion of the retail business is made possible [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor, would do almost anything to get and keep power. That, in the opinion of powerful German bankers, includes making herself look ready for war with Russia in order to make her political rival, Frank-Walter Steinmeier (lead image, right), the coalition Foreign Minister and opposition leader in [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Before a military strongman got himself elected prime minister of the south Pacific island of Fiji, he thought it a good idea to threaten his larger island neighbours, Australia and New Zealand, with the idea that Russia would arm his junta to the teeth, paying for the weapons with port rights [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Mining Maven is the London market’s bulwark against the meretricious drivel of the Financial Times, the Murdoch press, and the Guardian. And not only when it comes to investor hype, fraud, and insider dealing.

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By John Helmer, Moscow Four out of five Polish voters casting ballots in Sunday’s first-round presidential election were holding their noses. But what they want to say won’t be clear until the second round on May 24; maybe not until the parliamentary election in six months’ time. What is already clear is that the Poles [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Last week a Vienna, Austria, court ruled that US government charges against Ukrainian oligarch Dmitry Firtash are unsubstantiated and unlawfully motivated by political scheming. Next up for the rule of evidence and of law — the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg must judge whether European Union (EU) sanctions against Russia [...]

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By John Helmer, Moscow The Moscow Times, a small English-language daily outlet for a string of foreign causes since 1992, has been sold by its Finnish owner, Sanoma. The new Russian owner, Demyan Kudryavtsev, told the newspaper on Tuesday he won’t be closing it down, but will be changing what it does. He told a [...]