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By John Helmer, Moscow   @bears_with In our last episode, Denis Diderot, the French philosopher in Paris, had sold his library to the Empress Catherine in St. Petersburg. For his bonus, he had received a ticket to meet and talk to Catherine directly. At their first meeting at a masked ball in the Winter Palace, Diderot […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow   @bears_with Boris Dubrovsky (lead images), President Vladimir Putin’s governor of Chelyabinsk between 2014 and March 19, 2019, has long been at risk of lung disease, and he is now reported to be in a Swiss clinic for treatment. His prognosis is uncertain. More certain it is that Dubrovsky will not be […]

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  By John Helmer, Moscow   @bears_with Joe Biden’s campaign for president, as well as his defence against charges of corrupt influence peddling and political collusion in the Ukraine, are being promoted in Washington by the Ukrainian oligarch Victor Pinchuk (lead image, right) through the New York lobbyist, candidate adviser and pollster, Douglas Schoen (left). This […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow   @bears_with In the cartoon,  Mighty Mouse was always on the defensive, repelling attacks from wicked aggressors, cats, for example, or dogs.   When the cartoon first began in 1942, the words of the theme song were also defensive:  “Mr. Trouble never hangs around, When he hears this mighty sound: ‘Here I come […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow   @bears_with Among Russian oligarchs, Alexei Mordashov (lead image, centre) holds two records. One is for empty promises: he has never told the whole truth in public or when he has visited President Vladimir Putin (right) for private conversations about his business plans and the Russian state interest. Mordashov’s other record is […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow   @bears_with The New York State Supreme Court has ruled to dismiss Leonid Lebedev’s (lead image, right) five-year case against Victor Vekselberg (first left) and Len Blavatnik (second left) for a 15% share of their £13.8 billion sale of the TNK-BP oil company to Rosneft in 2013.    Lebedev has been suing for […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow   @bears_with When Igor Kolomoisky (lead image, centre) financed anti-Russian units operating with the Ukrainian Army in the Ukrainian civil war, he was a staunch ally of Petro Poroshenko’s government in Kiev and the Obama Administration’s chief Ukraine policymakers, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (left) and her Assistant Secretary for European Affairs, […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow   @bears_with Stephen Adler (lead image), the American chief executive of Reuters news agency, has ordered into publication three US Government-directed stories targeting the Russian oil company Rosneft —  the first in mid-April, and two published over the past week. Adler’s operations  support US coup plans in Venezuela and US sanctions against […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow   @bears_with The semi-annual sale of Russian paintings this week by London’s leading auction houses fell short of proving that demand has overcome five years of wartime pressure and is recovering with the price of crude oil.  The Russian art market remains  unsettled, however, by the disappearance of big Russian bidders who […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Not with a bang; almost without a whimper. This is how the oil, real estate and banking empire of Yury Khotin (lead image, left) and his son Alexei Khotin (right) has ended. One of the two men — dubbed in 2015 the Тайнолигархи, the secret oligarchs because they kept their photographs […]