back to article Russia to suspend US GPS stations in tit-for-tat spat

Russia is about to shut down American GPS stations on Russian soil – not as a reaction to the Crimean crisis, but instead in response to Washington's failure to agree to host ground stations for the Russian GLONASS system. Russian deputy foreign minister Dmitry Rogozin said the suspension would take place beginning June 1, and …

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  1. MadBof

    Message to millennials...

    Better start learning how to read a map.

    1. jonathanb Silver badge

      Re: Message to millennials...

      No, it's OK. Most phones support GPS and GLONASS at the same time. If it can only access one of the networks, it will be a little less accurate. Individually, both GLONASS and GPS will give you around 10m accuracy. Using both together will give you about 5m accuracy. You will just find yourself back to the level of accuracy you had in a phone from about 3 years ago.

      1. Spoonsinger

        Re: "....level of accuracy you had in a phone from about 3 years ago."

        Not sure that's the problem. Both GPS & GLONASS need terrestrial base stations to achieve that accuracy. From my reading of the article it seems the GLONASS lot arn't being given the ability to use or piggy back off the terrestrial part by using the already established GPS transmitters. Early 90's GPS was rubbish until the fixed point base stations were set up to negate the errors intentionally set in on the free to air signal.

        1. Vic

          Re: "....level of accuracy you had in a phone from about 3 years ago."

          Early 90's GPS was rubbish until the fixed point base stations were set up to negate the errors intentionally set in on the free to air signal.

          You're thinking of DGPS corrections, which were a way of working around the SA accuracy issue.

          Since SA has now been switched off, DGPS is not used nearly as much.

          This article is not about DGPS.

          Vic.

          1. Enric Martinez

            Re: "....level of accuracy you had in a phone from about 3 years ago."

            Maybe not, but I was completely unaware of that what you say.

            I happen to use a Gramin eTrex (I know, it's a bit old) and I had it on DGPS...

            You always learn something new ;)

            THX mate!!!

    2. Enric Martinez

      Re: Message to millennials...

      I have bought a few compasses and a Casio solar-powered watch.

      Well, it's not because of that but because the GPS sucks having to wait a century and a half every time I want to go out for a run and the batteries empty like crazy too :P

      Yea, maps are the way to go, maps, watches and compasses.

  2. NoneSuch

    Now if we can only get the Russian soldiers in Crimea to start using iMaps, they'll be out of there within a week without a shot being fired.

    1. EPurpl3

      “Now if we can only get the Russian soldiers in Crimea to start using iMaps, they'll be out of there within a week without a shot being fired.“

      What Russian soldiers in Crimea?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        It's part of Russia...

        What other nationality would the soldiers in Crimea be?

        1. Charles Manning

          Re: "What other nationality would the soldiers in Crimea be?"

          Based on a random sampling of forces in foreign countries during the last 50 years, if you flip over a soldier the odds are you will find "Made in USA" on the sticker.

          1. veeguy

            Re: "What other nationality would the soldiers in Crimea be?"

            Roll the clock back another 150 or 200 years and the label on the soldier's bottoms would read "Made in England" back when England was relevant on the world stage you know...

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        You know, the ones that invaded Ukraine and are pretending they're "not soldiers".

        1. Mark 65

          <quote>You know, the ones that invaded Ukraine and are pretending they're "not soldiers".</quote>

          Are you talking about the ones that helped overthrow a democratically elected Government or the ones helping those who object to the replacement one?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "Are you talking about the ones that helped overthrow a democratically elected Government"

            Do you mean the government elected by vote rigging in the east, run by a former mobster who embezzled billions and imprisoned his political rivals? Is that the overthrown "government" you're talking about?

      3. Tom 11

        @ EPurpl3

        You forgot the joke icon, a quick look at the time stamps on your naysayers indicates a probable geographic location which indicates the need for a prompt to tell them if a postulation is indeed humorous or not.

    2. Dazed and Confused
      Joke

      Russian soldiers in Crimea to start using iMaps,

      > Now if we can only get the Russian soldiers in Crimea to start using iMaps, they'll be out of there within a week without a shot being fired.

      They are using iMaps that's why they think they're in Russia.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Russian soldiers in Crimea to start using iMaps,

        In post-Soviet Crimea, Government elects you!

  3. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    American GPS stations

    <confused>

    The NYT says, "The United States has stations around the world, but none in Russia".

    </confused>

    1. Paul_Murphy

      Re: American GPS stations

      I think you have to be american for that to make sense: ie. the World series, MIss Universe, .com etc.

      1. Mark 85 Silver badge

        Re: American GPS stations

        I'm American and I'm confused by that....

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: American GPS stations

          Uh... you can have things 'around the world' without having them in _every political jurisdiction_. If I say I have 'locations around the world' that doesn't mean there HAVE to be some in every country...

          1. Eddy Ito

            Re: American GPS stations

            @David W. I think the confusion comes from the Russians saying they are going to shut down the US GPS stations in Russia and the NY Times saying there are no US GPS stations in Russia to shut down. Of course that doesn't mean there aren't Russian stations using US GPS satellite data that we don't include in the count of stations the US operates.

            Of course the fear that the Russians want the stations so their RT-23 Molodets with ten 550 kiloton MIRV warheads are more accurate is a bit like saying someone wants a surgical laser pointer for their 12 GA shotgun firing explosive 000 buck.

      2. RAMChYLD

        Re: American GPS stations

        And then there's the Borderlands 2 Loot the World app. Which is US only.

        Many muricans have a small mindset. Either that or world to them means "new world" which only covers North America...

        1. foo_bar_baz

          Re: American GPS stations

          From the ria.ru article:

          "The CIA and the Pentagon believe the stations would improve the accuracy of Russian ballistic missiles, the New York Times reported earlier this month."

          I thought that would be a good thing, there's no MAD without the "MA" part.

          1. rtb61

            Re: American GPS stations

            Yes, because even though all the morons intend to blow up the surface of the earth and kill as many people as possible, they are going to leave all those satellites intact and not take them out with nukes, ohhh yeahhh. They could even take out those stations as a priority

            Seriously, just how stupid do the CIA and Pentagon think everyone is.

            Everyone knows exactly what is going on, this is a US military industrial complex, corporation doing the thinking for the US government, nothing but corporate greed, end of story.

        2. veeguy

          Re: American GPS stations

          Or maybe we only count *relevant* places?

    2. Eddy Ito

      Re: American GPS stations

      You're not alone.

    3. David Cantrell

      Re: American GPS stations

      Why the confusion? Would you still be confused if it said "Benin" instead of "Russia"?

  4. Servman
    Paris Hilton

    Desert Storm

    Um... Actually the US didn't permanently disable Selective Availability on the GPS system for non-military devices until May 2000. I don't know where the 1991 figure came from.

    Personal Bootnote: Upon review I see that it was disabled for the duration of the first gulf war as well. Mea Culpa.

    Icon: Paris, because it's just SO wrong...

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Desert Storm

      It was officially permanently disabled in 2000 (although the civilian signal can be blocked in regions of conflict) because the FAA wanted to use it to replace navigation beacons and landing aids.

      It struck even the US govt has ridiculous to have one branch of govt spending $Bn to overcome a restriction put in by another branch that had spent $Bn to do the same thing.

      1. Charles Manning

        Re: Desert Storm

        The deliberate wiggling of the signal was known as Selective Availability.

        GPS works by measuring the time (==distance) from satellites and using trilateration (NOT triangulation) to figure out position. If you deliberately fiddle with the timing (== distance), you move the apparent position.

        Anyone could already remove the SA error (along with atmospheric errors etc) using DGPS which works by calculating the errors at a base station and sending those to the receiver so it can remove the errors and calculate a better position.

        Removing SA just got rid of this part of the error, there are still others.

  5. Tim Roberts 1

    sounds fair to me

    Without and real detail to go on, this could well be a "you reap what you sow" moment for the US.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: sounds fair to me

      I doubt it really matters to them: russia's actions may reduce the accuracy of gps in russia a bit, but the system was developed during the cold war to help american missiles hit targets in russia, and at the time it certainly couldn't have depended upon calibration stations on russian soil (not that city busting nukes need all that much accuracy, though counter-force does benefit from a bit more accuracy).

  6. The Mole

    Why do they need permission?

    My understanding of how ground stations work is that they are basically a fixed antennas, super accurate gps receiver and most importantly precise knowledge of where you really are. With some maths you work out the error between where you really are and where the satellites say you are. This allows you to provide corrections based on errors introduced by atmospheric conditions, wobbles in the earths rotation and the sats orbit etc.

    Unless the ground stations are actually broadcasting on radio what permission does the US need to provide? Can't the Russians just subcontract this out to any comms tower operator and/or shove it on the roofs of their embassies?

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Why do they need permission?

      It needs to broadcast a correction signal - typically either over the GSM phone network or a pager band - which needs a license from the hosting government.

      Since you need these systems to get high accuracy a lot of next-gen GNSS systems are just using a single geostationary satelite and a bunch of ground stations - to give cheap higher accuracy coverage over their own territory.

      1. User McUser

        Re: Why do they need permission?

        It needs to broadcast a correction signal - typically either over the GSM phone network or a pager band - which needs a license from the hosting government.

        Sure, but wouldn't the GSM service provider be the one licensing said spectrum? I don't recall having to write a check to the FCC when I got my cellphone...

      2. Malcolm Weir

        Re: Why do they need permission?

        The "broadcast a correction signal" is generally known as DGPS. But in addition to that, there is GPS data (the ephemeris data) that can benefit from ground stations, although this is pretty adequately handled by existing stations.

        The real use of the ground systems is for WAAS-type systems, which uses separate geostationary satellites (originally leased Inmarsat birds, now a mix).

        Why people want the ground/WAAS setup is so that GPS can be used for precision air navigation. The US doesn't want aircraft to use a GLONASS system in Russia and a GPS one in the US, so they want to block GLONASS from the US simply so that they have the technical argument to support a GPS-monopoly on (civil) air navigation. The alternative is to have to equip and certify aircraft with two systems, and hope that (e.g.) a Russian jet approaching JFK is using the right set of signals.

        By the way, GPS was never relevant to ICBMs; tactical nukes like knowing where the launch point is, but ICBMs (and cruise missiles) never bothered with an external radio-based navigation system. ICBMs use stars to align themselves in the drift phase, and cruise use terrain maps.

    2. Charles Manning

      Re: Why do they need permission?

      GPS is run by the US Air Force.

      The GPS bases are thus US military bases.

      You need permission from the host country for setting up military bases.

      Therefore...

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Where have you been Murphy?!

    Just asking but have you moved to the moon? If you used GPS over the last decade, you likely got the signal from an American satellite. You (El Reg commentards) are often so quick to condemn the US but I seem to remember May 8th was Victory in Europe day. Perhaps you might want to understand exactly who was responsible for the lions share of that victory. My father was a bomber/navigator on Ploesti. He didn't have to help but he enlisted. My uncle Frank was a volunteer ambulance driver in Spain when Hitler was testing his new toys. Forgetting their sacrifice borders on criminal behavior.

    Some of you need to give credit where credit is due and to use an Americanism, stop looking a gift horse in the mouth. If we want to be the world police, let us; obviously SOMEBODY has to do it.

    I'm not proud of the way the last president acted but it's better than this lying coward has. Giving away my countries past and future to buy votes isn't particularly admirable.

    Mark my words, Putin and his cronies are deliberately starting another cold war and you'll be better off if we're on your side rather than being "neutral" and politically correct. The only thing the Russians and Middle East understand is a strong authoritarian military presence. Failure to prove that presence (by locking down our GPS among other things) will eventually be fatal.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Notas Badoff
      FAIL

      this lying ...

      Oh dear oh dear... And before DDay, who was fighting the Nazis on land? Millions of dead soldiers and civilians would like to talk to you about your one-dimensional 'truths'. In your own words, "Forgetting their sacrifice borders on criminal behavior."

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: this lying ...

        I DIDN"T forget ... you and yours did by continually attacking the hand that fed you. One dimensional? Hardly, and while we're at it, how many of your relatives served voluntarily? If it were not for the US involvement in WWII you'd all be speaking German or Russian.

    3. FutureShock999

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      Awww, how CUTE! An American that has never left his home country beside trips to Cancun for Spring Break.

      If you had any real knowledge of world affairs - which you can get by travel and living abroad, I will quickly add - then you would know that Germany is the most economically and militarily strongest country in the EU. And you would also know that Germany gets a HUGE amount of its energy imported as Russian-sourced natural gas. As do many countries in Europe. Some - like the UK - are able to access local supplies and the North Sea gas wells, and so COULD say FU to Mr. Putin. But the fact is, most cannot, and are dependent upon Russian energy, and will be for some time.

      Worse yet, even when there are other supplies available (it is a world market, after all), the cost is much higher than Russian energy, which is close and has nice pipelines to Europe. So...the people at the very top would HATE to have their corporations actually pay more for energy, as it would hurt profits. And of course, many people would have trouble heating their homes, as much of Europe IS colder than the US average temperatures. So the plain fact is that unless someone can show the EU how Crimea or even Ukraine as a whole is more important than say, saving the EU economic recovery, and the thousands of EU lives that are likely to be lost due to a cold winter without enough home heating...then frankly it is a smart play to simply not get involved.

      I do feel sorry for those living in the Ukraine. My housekeeper just returned there to be closer to her son and his family, and I have spent hours talking to her about the situation they face there.

      But the simple fact is, it was STUPID to try and expand NATO the the very edge of former Soviet land. It was STUPID to think that the Russian Navy would give up it's only warm-water port, located in Crimea. It was stupid to think that they would not demand some buffer around their space, as we do as well. It was cowboy American thinking that drove NATO to think that treating Russia as a defeated foe rather than a neighbour was a good idea. Now you reap what you have sown - a huge nationalist reaction from Russia, headed by a crazed, militant nationalist that could well be another Hitler given half a chance.

      I am counting on the Chinese to bail the West out before he gets too far....they need us to buy shit to prop up their economy, and they hold too much US debt. If it hits the fan, they will subtly - or not so subtly - apply pressure from the East to reign him in, probably in exchange for selling out some Japanese and Philippinean fishing grounds and drilling rights to China.

      1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
        FAIL

        Re: FutureLost999 Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        ".....world affairs - which you can get by travel and living abroad, I will quickly add - then you would know that Germany is the most economically and militarily strongest country in the EU....." Oh dear, it seems you should have done some more Worldly traveling before shooting your mouth off. Germany is not the militarily strongest country in the EU, both France and the UK have more military personnel (in fact, Germany is only ahead of Italy by a whisker!). Both France and the UK also have massively larger and more capable naval forces whilst Germany has no aircraft carriers or nuke subs. And the Germans also have to relie on NATO's shared nukes, having none of their own.

        ".....So the plain fact is that unless someone can show the EU how Crimea or even Ukraine as a whole is more important than say, saving the EU economic recovery, and the thousands of EU lives that are likely to be lost due to a cold winter without enough home heating...then frankly it is a smart play to simply not get involved....." Apart from the Germans having rediscovered a love for lignite, and French nuke power station excesses. Oh, sorry, was that missing on your extensive World knowledge tour too?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        GODWIN!

        ...

        about ten years ago in this particular discussion.

        :'( Now I'll never get those cheezy goldfish.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        I've been overseas in Germany, Switzerland and France several times for weeks at a time so there goes one of your sweeping generalizations. The Apothekary Museum in Heidelberg was very interesting as were the public square political debates, been in several factories, traveled to Frankfurt, Heidelberg, Strassbourg, Karlsruhe, Zurich, Maulberg, visited a whole Rhein valley full of castles, cathedrals, etc.

        Obviously you don't have any idea of what life in the Northeast USA is like, high oil and gas prices have abounded for many years.

        Seems ignorant to deliberately put yourselves in harms way by only buying Russian gas. THAT is hardly a smart bargain. This was done for political expediency rather than anything else. Had you instead voted against the so called green agenda and developed your own energy sources you may have avoided the Russian bear. But it's far easier to let the Russians be the "bad guys" environmentally and appease the greens.

        We are producing more of our own energy, and using alternate sources in the USA than ever before and more will follow. We learned our lesson too late and are paying for it. We SHOULD be staying out of your politics but we'll be dragged back into them because you'll sign some toothless non agression agreement (again) and trust they won't steal your country from you and then when it happens it will be too late. You signed in to NATO too remember.

        The Chinese bought alot of your countries assets too so don't act so smug. They have the cash afterall.

    4. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      "and you'll be better off if we're on your side rather than being "neutral""

      No, we won't. The USA does far more harm than good. It is a destabilizing and deleterious presence. Western nations would be far stronger if the USA simply wasn't there.

      I would far prefer that civilized nations simply cut off all ties with the USA, Russia and China. The rest of the developed world could federate and work together towards common cause; there's nothing any of those nations has that we explicitly need. Let the poxy whoresons annihilate eachother, or sink eachother into some godawful economic depression. I don't care.

      Until a nation is ready to play with others as equals then the rest of the world simply shouldn't interface with them. None of us have the knowledge and experience to play god; we shouldn't go interfering in their culture, or attempting to "advance" them (technologically or culturally) artificially. Each nation needs to find the patch towards international cooperation and peace on their own.

      The rest of the developed (and developing) world combined has more than enough resources to build a strong defense force and a self-sufficient economy. We just don't need barbarians.

      So to hell with the WTO. To hell with globalization and the infrastructure of American economic imperialism. It's time to form a true international federation for mutual economic and defensive benefit, where rules regarding interference in other nations and acceptance of other nations into the bloc are codified at the outset.

      P.S. don't you dare trot out "our boys died to save your asses" yankee patriot bullshit. My ancestors bled and died same as yours. The threat was global; all nations were at risk. If I recall correctly your nation not only was late to the party, they seriously considered joining up with the bad guys for both world wars.

      Besides, however brave your antecedents may heave been, the USA today is an emphatically shitty copy of that proud nation that existed then. If your ancestors were alive, they'd kick you in the crotch and leave you in agony on the floor for the sheer hubris of thinking that the corrupt oligachy of today's America is even a pale shadow of the nation that created a generation of men who understood the concept "the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few".

      Lest we forget. There is a reason this saying is tied to an international holiday. Your nation has forgotten the very important lessons that are tied to those three words. And for that reason I am not "thankful" for the US of A. I'm fucking terrified of you bastards; far more so than Putin's KGB Mafiosos or China's rush towards a stable middle class.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        @ Trevor_Pott

        How often do you travel to the US for business or shopping? How often do you use US products? I'm not even going to ask about buying stuff made in China.

        I understand you hate the US, and I get a good chuckle every time I read one of your Eadon rants, but if you are advocating cutting ties with the US, China, and Russia then I suggest you stop being a hypocrite and live what you preach and cut all ties.

        1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

          @Anonymous Coward

          I suspect that you may be an idiot. One person "cutting ties" with China or the USA doesn't affect a goddamned thing. All it does is serve to put that person at a disadvantage. The same is true of one entire nation. For such a thing to have an effect it must be done as a power bloc.

          The reasons are many. The first and most obvious is that economies the size of China or the USA won't notice the lack of contribution of a single individual and will barely notice the lack of contribution of an entire nation. Secondly, so long as other nations respond to political and economic pressure from these "superpower" nations, then any nation which tries to take an ethical stand can (and will) find themselves on the wrong end of an economic blockade from the current western power bloc.

          If the majority of western nations were to band together and sever ties with the US, China and Russia they would survive the attempt, economically, at least. I would per perfectly willing to participate in such an event, cutting all my personal economic ties with those nations, no matter how hard that would be, or how much sacrifice it would entail.

          But what purpose does it serve to do so unilaterally? I will accomplish nothing by doing so and I will also remove any chance I have of obtaining the financial or political capital required to see my ideals considered, let alone made manifest.

          What I preach is a federated economic union of civilized powers that embed ethics and international cooperation as a foundational principle in what would ultimately be a new form of government. The USA, China and Russia would never be a part of such an entity because they cannot unilaterally exert power over it. Thus I would say "leave them behind and move humanity forward."

          That isn't related in any way to one individual's purchase choices. They are so completely and utterly disconnected in scope and scale that to call the lack of one hypocrisy in relation to the other demonstrates nothing more spite on behalf of the accuser.

          For the record, I do choose products from civilized nations wherever possible. I'm entirely willing to pay more in order to support the economies of nations whose politics I agree with. My segregation isn't absolute, however, I am in fact working towards such a goal.

          Said personal economic choice has nothing to do with my belief in how nations should act at scale. They are different beasts entirely. When I choose who I buy from I am choosing based on my personal ethics. It imposes nothing on anyone else. It is my choice, and I alone bear the consequences of that choice.

          Acting at a national level, everything is different. The ethics of the individual are completely fucking irrelevant at that scale. What matters is security and stability. Security of resources, stability of economy, stability of relations and security of your people.

          This is best achieved by having strong relationships with rationally-run countries that behave in a predictable and honourable manner, presuming, of course, that your nation is also a rationally-run nation that behaves in a predictable and honourable manner. "Surprises" don't go down well on the international scene. Change needs to be slow, multilateral and controlled. There is no room for cowboys.

          A strong international federation of nations that has a codified foreign policy, trans-national law and courts, codified admittance and ejection policies, harmonized economic policy and so on and so forth...this is where strength comes from. With the possible exception of Russia, no nation - not even Canada - has all the resources required to survive in the modern world. No nation - not even the almighty US of A - has a military capable of defending against all foes.

          Most importantly, no human being - not a single fucking one of us - has the knowledge to predict the results of interfering in the natural development of other nations. Far too much (if not most) of the tragedy in human history has stemmed from the inability of our many and varied leaders to resist the urge to meddle.

          The ethics of international cooperation and foreign policy have fuck all to do with personal likes or dislikes. They have everything to do with learning from our fucking mistakes and applying that knowledge to better governing our nations. The ethics of nations is about the needs of the many outweighing the needs of the few, not the desires of the one influencing only that one.

          I preach and advocate evidence-based legislation and a union of nations who can and will adhere to that concept. I believe that we need to be cautious and cooperative in our international endeavors. I believe also that we cannot let other nations push us around to suit their agenda; we need to have strong enough ties within our power bloc to say "no" to nations like the USA who refuse to play nicely with others.

          Playing nicely involves things like recognizing, and ratifying participation in international courts. It involves adhering to terms of treaties, even when they don't suit your current political goals. (E.G. the terms of the NAFTA treaty are not merely a means to economically cripple Canada and Mexico, they also impose restrictions on the US that is must adhere to.)

          I don't preach anti-Americanism, no matter how hard that may be for you to comprehend. Nor do I preach anti-Russianism or anti-Chinaism. I preach global legal harmonization, recognition and enforcement of human rights and a strict limit to the power of corporations and politicians.

          When the US is ready to ratify international courts, abide by it's treaties, address it's wealth gap, and start addressing the power imbalance of it's society (starting with Citizens United) then I think it would make a wonderful addition to any international community. The USA is filled with amazingly good people who try to do great things. It just isn't mature enough as a nation to play with others internationally in a rational, predictable and globally advantageous manner.

          If you cannot see the difference between personal choice in sourcing products and a desire to build a better a more stable world at the scale of international interactions then I must return to my original statement: you're an idiot.

          Edit: as a side note, I loathe traveling into the US. With very few exceptions, I don't do it simply "for business" and I would never do it "for shopping." (Seriously?) When I go into the US it is because people I like and/or care about have asked me to do so. I don't go to VMworld or Spiceworld "because of business." I go to meet human beings that I believe are good people. I would love it if they all came here to hang out, but it is those events that they choose to attend, and it makes sense for me to go so I can meet up with as many of them as possible all in one go.

          1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
            FAIL

            Re: Potty Re: @Anonymous Coward

            ".....a federated economic union of civilized powers that embed ethics and international cooperation as a foundational principle in what would ultimately be a new form of government....." So you missed the whole failure of the Commitern and their Five Year Plans? A very simple example of the failure of centralized planning for the Communist Bloc, whilst the more effective system of capitalism and democracy rebuilt the Western European countries much more convincingly.

            "....A strong international federation of nations that has a codified foreign policy, trans-national law and courts, codified admittance and ejection policies, harmonized economic policy and so on and so forth...this is where strength comes from...." Oh, you mean like the United Nations? An American creation.

            ".....I don't preach anti-Americanism....." No, preaching would imply some form of measured delivery, whereas you rabidly bleat it at every opportunity.

            1. hplasm
              Devil

              Re: Potty @Anonymous Coward

              "... whereas you rabidly bleat it at every opportunity."

              Don't 'bleat' Trevor- Matt will sue for infringement of his raison d'etre...

          2. Irongut

            Re: @Anonymous Coward

            Too long didn't read but resorting to name calling in the first sentence is poor form for someone who is supposed to be a journalist on the very site they write for. Trevor did no one ever tell you its a bad idea to piss off your customers?

            1. Steven Roper

              @Irongut Re: @Anonymous Coward

              I would say the ratio of upvotes to downvotes on Trevor's posts reveal perfectly the extent to which his customers are pissed off.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: @Irongut @Anonymous Coward

                More like the number of Americans that peruse this site.....

              2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      2. Euripides Pants

        Relax, Trevor

        " I'm fucking terrified of you bastards"

        Our "health care" system will implode soon enough and drag the rest of our economy down with it. You will then be able to take Adventure Vacations in the worlds newest third world country and marvel at entire families living in bloated SUVs rusting on our decrepit interstates.

        On second thought, since most of us in the US can calmly accept this fate maybe you should be terrified...

      3. Irony Deficient

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        Trevor, the USA were “late to the party” because they were not a guarantor of Belgian neutrality in 1914, and were not in a mutual assistance pact with Poland in 1939. The casus bellorum did not appear until the sinking of several merchant ships by Germany’s unrestricted submarine warfare in 1917 and the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 respectively.

        If you have proof of serious consideration of the USA joining up with the Central Powers during WWI, or with the Axis in WWII, I’d appreciate learning about where that proof can be found. There were certainly strong isolationist elements in the USA in those times, even in the upper echelons of government — when Wilson asked Congress to declare war against the German Empire, these speeches were given by two senators in opposition to declaring war. (Try imagining one of our current crop of senators giving Norris’ speech.)

      4. F111F
        Flame

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        You should be terrified of us. Because we kick rear end and take names, unlike the rest of the milquetoast nations in Europe, excluding Britain. Bosnia, Georgia, Crimea, and now Eastern Ukraine, all show just how weak the European militaries really are. The single factor keeping some sort of stability is the freakin' lopsided amount of funds the USA pours into NATO every year.

        And I have traveled the world, served in the military, was stationed in Europe, and have a far more intimate knowledge of why planet Earth has had no, as in zero, world wars since 1945. The single largest reason you enjoy the prosperity you currently have is due to the sacrifice of the US men and women willing to guard the walls and gates of the world. We ensure the air and sea lanes are open for commerce, free of charge. We gave the Internet to the world. We opened up our GPS assets for all to use, free of charge. Frankly, if it weren't for the USA,'s Marshall Plan the European economy would still be climbing out of WWII's destruction and Europe would be a forgotten player on the international stage.

        We don't ask for your money, we don't ask for services, we don't ask for your vote. A simple "Thank You" will suffice.

        1. Mike Smith
          Mushroom

          Oderint dum metuant

          "You should be terrified of us."

          or 'let them hate so long as they fear'. Attributed to a certain Caesar Caligula, who came to a very unpleasant end, along with his wife and child, when the hate overcame that fear.

          If you have to rely on repression to maintain your position, that's as clear an indication as any that you're not fit to hold that position any longer.

          "Because we kick rear end and take names"

          IOW, you swagger round the world pointing guns at people, launch unprovoked attacks on other countries, use international aid as a weapon and generally act like a school bully shoving a 'my way or the highway' attitude. It's a track record that not even the European empires at their worst can match.

          "all show just how weak the European militaries really are"

          Read this slowly, and absorb - a re-fus-al to go in with all guns blaz-ing as soon as some-thing kicks off in an ad-join-ing na-tion does not mean Eu-rope is weak mil-i-tar-ily.

          There is a big diff-er-ence be-tween be-ing ab-le to re-tal-i-ate when a-tta-cked and it-ch-ing to pick a fight o-ver some-thing out-side our bor-der-s. Just be-cause Eu-rope has not joi-ned in with A-mer-i-ca's sa-bre ratt-ling does not mean we can't de-fend our-selves. We can.

          If the EU or NATO were to be attacked, Putin could easily receive a very bloody nose. And that's without thinking about the enconomic consequences. With no-one to trade with, he'd be screwed. If you tot up the combined military strengths of the major European countries, you get a total that matches up to the Russians very well.

          As well as that, it's possible that an unprovoked attack on Britain or France would trigger an immediate nuclear response. Neither country needs the OK from Washington to retaliate. And they can hit Russia if need be.

          And that's without considering that an attack on Europe could only succeed if the aggressor could subdue 740 million people. How did your lot cope in Afghanistan and Iraq? Wasn't a walk-over, was it? And that was a long time after a bunch of ragged-arsed coolies kicked the US out of Vietnam. Attitudes like yours suggest that's a lesson that's never been fully appreciated on your side of the pond.

          "And I have traveled the world"

          Unless that travel was confined to visiting American military bases around the globe, I can only conclude that you went with a closed mind and refused to try to understand different people's points of view.

          I too have been around the world a bit. Almost without exception, the Americans I've come across have fallen into two broad camps. One consists of those people who have seen and understood different cultures and views, and thoroughly despise US arrogance. The other - a much smaller group, I'm thankful to say - consist of morons who think that the world is their playground and there are two ways of doing things - the American way and the wrong way.

          "Frankly, if it weren't for the USA,'s Marshall Plan the European economy would still be climbing out of WWII's destruction and Europe would be a forgotten player on the international stage."

          Ah yes, WWII. Started because a failed artist and talented rabble-rouser was able to exploit an unstable political situation in Europe. A political situation that arose because a certain party to the Versailles treaty managed to impose a short-sighted and idealistic concept of ethnic self-determination uber alles in place of the more pragmatic solutions the European leaders favoured.

          If you didn't cover that at school, there's a little hint to help your research - rearrange the following letters to get the name of the country that person led: S A U.

          "We don't ask for your money, we don't ask for services, we don't ask for your vote. A simple "Thank You" will suffice."

          If that was the case, anti-American sentiment wouldn't be on the increase around the world. It's becoming frighteningly obvious that the America that genuinely was a beacon of freedom after the end of the Second World War has now become a fascist oligarchy that is rapidly succumbing to God disease. I'm old enough to remember what the US used to be like - and it sure as hell isn't like that now. Washington is becoming a real menace.

          1. F111F
            Facepalm

            Re: Oderint dum metuant

            Gee, where to begin on a reply which demonstrates so clearly the neo-Euro viewpoint, where you rage against those who have stood by and with you for generations, securing the lifestyle to which you are used to.

            Yes, I have been around the world at various US, NATO, Japanese, and Saudi bases, I proudly say that, having stood watch on the walls and guarding the gates that have protected Europe and the world for 70 years now, a second generation as my father also stood watch in the Fulda Gap and on the battlefields of Vietnam.

            Yes, we do go around with weapons locked and loaded, for Bear, pirates, etc, You should be thanking us for doing so, but no, you're petulant about being reminded of your own weakness.

            And that brings us to the current weaknesses of Europe's militaries. Since the end of the Cold War, there has been a steady and significant decline of will, capability and lethality. With the sole exception of the UK, not a single European ally had the ability to transport, sustain, or maintain their forces in Afghanistan and Iraq. In every single case, the US had to step up and keep units in the fight to cover for European ineffectiveness. Finland has just concluded that Sweden's military cannot fight beyond the first few days of a war, for lack of supplies, transportation, and sheer lack of numbers. Although not a NATO partner, Finland was planning on Sweden coming to the fight, but now will have to look at Norway and NATO.

            Bosnia and Libya are perfect examples of how European militaries simply cannot function without direct US support. In neither case could Europe a) work together, b) provide enough forces, or c) support said forces for more than a few days. In both cases the US had to provide leadership, planning, sustainment, and crucial force multipliers (tankers, EW, transports), to get the job done. Europe simply can't defend themselves let alone project power in any meaningful manner.

            Other than the UK, our NATO allies don't train enough, aren't modernizing effectively, and are rapidly degenerating into ceremonial forces, who look good in parades but can't fight their way out of a wet paper bag. The Russians know this, they know Europe is once again weak, despite the bluster about Crimea and the Ukraine. There is absolutely nothing Europe could, or would do militarily, if Russia simply took the Ukraine. Mark my words, they WILL take the Eastern Ukraine, either peaceably, or just roll the tanks in and end all the speculation.

            So go ahead, look down on the ones who hold the wolves at bay, the ones who do the hard, dirty work in places you can't, and wouldn't dare to go. We'll still be out there, keeping your butt safe, at least for a little while longer. Keep it up, the anti-American rhetoric. Soon enough you will get your wish, and the US will turn to isolationism once again, and when the wolves are prowling about, you will remember when there used to be guards keeping your family safe, because you won't have the nerve, tools, or training to.

            Anti-American sentiment is on the rise because the pampered European peoples (and many Democrats) want desperately to believe the age of war is over. All you have to do is talk it out, or just lecture sternly, pointing one's finger at said culprit. Reminds me of the movie "Demolition Man"... You field militaries who expect that just showing up will cause the bad guys to quiver in their boots and meekly repent. Or, all that's needed to stop aggression is a talk show host, who looks very sad at the bad guys, and they repent on air. You don't like being reminded that there are genuine psychos out there, some in command of armies, and others in charge of entire nations.

            Boku Haram is a perfect example. Almost 300 girls in Nigeria are kidnapped and who does the world turn to? You somehow expect the US to have the ability to travel halfway around the world, take out a brutal thug, and rescue the girls, overnight. Oh that's right, we can only do that if we have the experience, training, and equipment, in the right place, which none of the mainland European militaries have. Even France had to use US C-17 transports in their latest African rumble, as the A400M is not ready for action. Neo-Euros lament a strong US presence world-wide, but can't man-up to take our place on the wall or at the gates. We could go into Nigeria, but how many of you Neo-Euros would decry the US acting unilaterally once again? Why should we put more of our young people on the thin red line when (in this case) Nigeria won't. The same will be asked of Europe. Why should we stay when you obviously won't hold up your end of the bargain?

            So, to wrap-up, get your house in order and step up to the job, or stop yer whinin', 'cause it's startin' to seriously bug me and my friends.

            1. Mike Smith
              FAIL

              Re: Oderint dum metuant

              "you rage against those who have stood by and with you for generations, securing the lifestyle to which you are used to."

              Try to understand this - America has changed a lot over the last few decades, and not for the better. There always will be some resentment against the top dog - that comes with the territory - but one thing that's become very noticeable since the collapse of the USSR is the rise of a tacit belief that America can do what the hell it wants because there's no-one around to pull the White House up short if necessary. Since the end of the Cold War, vigilance has become paranoia, exercise of power has become more reckless and Washington's attitude has changed from big brother to Big Brother and Big Bully. Your whole attitude smacks of a paranoid belief in reds under the bed and that might equals right. It doesn't, and trying to enforce it only leads to increasing resentment that eventually spills over into violence.

              "With the sole exception of the UK, not a single European ally had the ability to transport, sustain, or maintain their forces in Afghanistan and Iraq."

              You just don't get it, do you? Bush made a more-or-less unilateral decision to invade Afghanistan and bullied the rest of NATO in agreeing to the Iraq invasion. European defence policy doesn't include running around the world scattering high explosives like grass seed or trying to impose democracy at gunpoint. It's concerned with the defence of Europe. Could we repel an invasion? Yes, probably. Could we retaliate in kind if nuked? Certainly. Do we see it as our God-given right to run around the globe throwing our weight around? No.

              "The Russians know this, they know Europe is once again weak, despite the bluster about Crimea and the Ukraine."

              The Russians haven't done anything to directly provoke Europe or threaten the sovereignty of any NATO or EU country. Have you got that yet? The main threat is the continuation of the gas supplies - and Europe IS doing something about that.

              "they WILL take the Eastern Ukraine, either peaceably, or just roll the tanks in and end all the speculation."

              Pick your dummy up, put it back in and think about the answer to this question - WHY should Europe get involved with the affairs of two countries outside its borders? Ukraine and Russia are not in the EU, or NATO, or the common defence area.

              Has any NATO country been threatened or attacked? No.

              Has any EU country been threatened or attacked? No.

              If Putin was trying it on with Poland or the Baltic states, you'd have a very valid point about inaction, but Europe doesn't see it as its sacred duty to run around the world throwing its weight around any more. Tens of millions of dead from two world wars has shown us where that can end up.

              Same goes for Bosnia. Same goes for Libya. And Syria. And Nigeria. Britain gave Nigeria its independence over half a century ago. It's no longer our problem.

              "You don't like being reminded that there are genuine psychos out there, some in command of armies, and others in charge of entire nations."

              Correct, we don't, especially when one of them managed to spend eight years in the White House. If that idiot was still in power, we'd be very close to the outbreak of a third world war.

              "Boku Haram is a perfect example. Almost 300 girls in Nigeria are kidnapped and who does the world turn to?"

              Again - though it's an appalling occurrence, it isn't Europe's problem.

              "So, to wrap-up, get your house in order and step up to the job"

              Europe's house is in order. And it's not our job to tell the rest of the world how to behave. As a matter of fact, it's not Uncle Sam's either, and a lot of people are starting to get fed up with that.

              "or stop yer whinin', 'cause it's startin' to seriously bug me and my friends."

              Or what? Extraordinary rendition to an all-inclusive Cuban holiday with free waterboarding? A drone strike or two? Or are you just going to send the tanks in? That's what you do to people who disagree with you, right?

              1. Hit Snooze

                Re: Oderint dum metuant

                @Mike Smith

                The Russians haven't done anything to directly provoke Europe or threaten the sovereignty of any NATO or EU country.

                WHY should Europe get involved with the affairs of two countries outside its borders?

                but Europe doesn't see it as its sacred duty to run around the world throwing its weight around any more.

                Same goes for Bosnia. Same goes for Libya. And Syria. And Nigeria. Britain gave Nigeria its independence over half a century ago. It's no longer our problem.

                There are a few more references to isolationism in your post but you identified one major difference between the US and Europe. Europe sees injustices and all you do is shrug your shoulders and look the other way. What would happen if the US did that in any war; starting in WW1 - today? Hitler (and now Putin) is a great example of what "It's not my problem" attitude gets you.

                The US gets a bad rap because, for one, it is the world police and sticks its nose into other peoples business but it only does that because we saw what doing nothing leads to.

                1. Mike Smith

                  Re: Oderint dum metuant

                  "The US gets a bad rap because, for one, it is the world police and sticks its nose into other peoples business"

                  s/police/busybody.

                  And yep, I can understand the US self-righteousness, because when all's said and done, a police state is great when you're the police.

                  "but it only does that because we saw what doing nothing leads to."

                  And it worked well for a long time. Believe me, I'm very for from being a blinkered Yank-hater. When I was a kid, I was utterly in awe of what NASA was doing and really admired many things about the USA.

                  Fast-forward to today, and it's a very different picture. America is going down a well-trodden path towards full-blown fascism. And the saddest thing is that so many of your countrymen can't see it - you still believe you're free and doing the right thing.

        2. stu 4

          Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

          hahahah.

          that's funny.

          you win troll of the day. you have succinctly managed to sum up every fuckwitted american in 3 paragraphs. good work.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

            And you have summed up every layabout, scum bag, breadline standing, dole riding, handout seeking, commie brit in less time. Thanks Stu4! Assholes like you are the reason I follow the Register.

      5. stu 4

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        yup:

        what is the only country to have ever used nukes ? (and why ? because they wanted a taste of japan's wealth and wanted to force the surrender to them before the russians got there - thats it. not to end the war (japan was already finished)... they burned 100s of thousands of people to death to get some more money for the USA.

        one of the few countries to not sign geneva convention treaties on torture (along with North Korea, etc).

        A country where racial legalised segregation was rife only a generation ago, and still is in their prisons and most of their society.

        A country which time and time again has started or joined wars for one reason and one reason only - its own interests. Not to protect, not to honour ally treaties.

        A country in fact that is ONLY a superpower today because the SOLD arms to Britain throughout the war - not GAVE, SOLD.

        As a country the USA is about the worst example of a country we have on earth as far as its interaction with its neighbours is concerned.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

          We were faced with fanatics who vowed to fight to the death or commit suicide while trying to kill as many of us as possible. The Germans surrendered, the Japanese would not. The people who made the decision didn't know the radiation was as dangerous as it was but they used the bomb because it put as few of our (and yours) soldiers at risk as possible. It took TWO to make the Japanese surrender. The bomb hasn't been used since because it WAS used and people saw what it could do.

          BTW, The Russians were killing EVERYONE, even those Japanese who surrendered or tried to and they also invaded and took over the Korean Penninsula and half of China, foementing the Korean war and Vietnam in the process.

          I don't condone atom bombs or torture. BTW idiot, we forgave the war debts of all the countries involved. Maybe you didn't know.

          I don't care about the slavery\race comment because you Brits helped fund the South during our civil war because it was in your financial interests and you were the original slaveowners/traders along with the Dutch for years before then and after. Pot, meet kettle...Racial segregation in prison is purely due to gang violence and self preservation. More blacks are segregationist than whites today. Whites are a statisical minority today, so you figure it out. I'm tired of apologizing and I don't have any race guilt.

          I would never sign any agreement with the UN ever, torture or not. Exactly who is the UN these days besides a bunch of assholes. Clean up your own country before you criticize mine.

          I only recollect Grenada being a poorly justified "invasion", show me the others. Did you want to talk about Vietnam or Korea? I think not, see above and the rise of Chinese communism then read your OWN history. Bosnia, no British History again; Afganistan or Iraq no besides the British history, we're leaving there and never got a dime. I will say we misguidedly thought we could have done some good for their own education and democracy if they had any respect for either. But they don't, in both cases they would rather live under totalitarian warlord rule in a misogynistic theocracy. But you don't criticize them since you'd rather harp on USA stuff too many have complained about for me to feel guilty about.

      6. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        Some people here still have the balls our forefathers did. Some have not turned into communists or socialists like so many have, both here and over there. Our country was trying to stay out of WWII for the longest time because of weak politicians more concerned about votes form a small vocal minority than lives. That is still the case.

        When we were attacked, we ultimately had no choice. There has been corruption and a full blown oligarchy for easily over a hundred years, who do you think put politicians in office? Unfortunately there is no other reason for politicians to exist than corruption and power.

        How can a Brit even use the word Imperialism negatively? You invented the concept. Where do you think the example came from? Don't even think that any "depression" involving the USA, China and Russia will not grossly affect YOUR economy adversely.

        One world order is what Hitler wanted, only he wanted direct control of it. What kind of job of leadership has the United Nations brought? Are they even marginally effective? No they couldn't lead their collective way out of a brown paper bag if it was soaking wet.

        Go ahead and be "terrified" and spread your FUD, all the alternates are far worse. It gets lonely on the collective and you'll find out.

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    5. 2+2=5 Silver badge

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      > Perhaps you might want to understand exactly who was responsible for the lions share of that victory.

      The Soviet forces were responsible for the lion's share of that victory. :-)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        Were they? They were only interested in stealing territory once the Germans were busy with us. The rest of the time they were on their heels defending themselves. When we entered WWII, the tide changed. At the end of the war, look what the Russians took and how brutal they were. Did we take whole countries away from the residents?

        They were our bombs, our airplanes, our tanks, no one else had the resources to fight.

        The Russians stole every design they could in the meantime and continue today.

        We forgave war debt, others did not.

        I get the smiley, but only for the Russian propoganda.

    6. Daniel B.

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      My uncle Frank was a volunteer ambulance driver in Spain when Hitler was testing his new toys. Forgetting their sacrifice borders on criminal behavior.

      Indeed. May I remind you that the US and the rest of the Allies gave Francisco Franco's regime a free pass? That's the same guy who asked the Third Reich for help, which was given in the form of said toy testing.

      The Allied Victory, by the way, was also shared with the USSR, which pounced Nazi Germany from the East as well.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        Those were the isolationist politicians who did not fall out of power for years. Things change idiot.

        Later politicians were less ignorant, especially after Guernica. and you are still speaking English instead of German or Russian. As said elsewhere the Russians STOLE whole countries, the USA didn't. ALL Russian involvment in WWII is suspect.

    7. Stern Fenster

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      "I seem to remember May 8th was Victory in Europe day. Perhaps you might want to understand exactly who was responsible for the lions share of that victory."

      Russia, wasn't it?

      1. F111F
        Mushroom

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        No. The US and the UK were fighting 3 nations (Germany, Italy, and Japan) on 3 continents (Europe, Africa, and Asia) and across two oceans (Atlantic and Pacific). The USSR fought exactly one nation and fought on exactly one front in Europe, (Eastern) while the Allies were fighting entire theatres of operations in Europe (Southern and Western, three, if you count ops in Norway), Northern Africa, India/Burma/China, Southern Pacific, Western Pacific, and the Atlantic.

        So, the bulk of the winning in WWII was done by the US and the UK, not the USSR. To give due credit, the Soviets held the cream of the German army at bay for years and bought enough time for the Allies to launch the largest amphibious assault the world has ever seen, and hopefully ever will see.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        Go ask an older resident of Berlin how they feel about the Russians. Then ask about the Americans. We didn't arbitrarily kill people who wanted to escape East Berlin.

        To the Russians all this was an opportunity for revenge and to gain territory.

    8. Mage Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      The US won WWII in Pacific.

      But Russia "won" WWII in Europe.

      WWI was different. Though the US entered very late, without them the Germans would have won as the Russians had given up and gone home to fight the "White Russians".

      1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
        Stop

        Re: Mage Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        "The US won WWII in Pacific....." Ignoring the massive contributions of Australasia, China and the British? BTW, the Soviets sat idly on their hands during the Pacific war until they saw the opportunity in 1945 to try and meddle in the Chinese civil war and push their Communist buddies into power in China.

        ".....But Russia "won" WWII in Europe....." Rubbish. The Russians not only precipitated the war in Europe by giving Hitler a free hand to attack Poland, they did so in the hope that the Western European countries would so weaken themselves that the Soviets could then invade Europe. The Russians then invaded Poland, Finland and the Baltic States under the cover of Germany's war with the Allies. The so-called 'Liberation' of Eastern Europe was no more than the occupation Stalin had been planning for years, only he had planned for it to be all of Europe. When Hitler attacked the Soviets in June 1941, Russia would probably have fallen if not for the supplies shipped from the US and UK, the delays forced upon Hitler by the Greek campaign, and the fact many of his best forces had to remain fighting the Allies in the West and Med theatres.

        The latter especially affected the Luftwaffe. The Germans failed at Leningrad and Stalingrad because they did not have enough transport aircraft, because they had lost too many fighting the Allies in the European and Med campaigns (especially over Norway, Holland and Crete). Their fighter force considered the Eastern Front a rest compared to fighting the RAF, and had to contend with the massive USAAF and RAF bombing campaigns, leaving them over-stretched, and the Luftwaffe never developed the strategic bombing force required to hit even British factories, let alone Soviet or American ones. Hitler's main problem was he picked too many fights at once, especially as the Axis could not match the industrial might of the British Empire and the US combined. Indeed, it would be fairer to say the US won the War in Europe on the factory shop floor, where democratic capitalist companies massively out-produced both Nazi and Communist factories.

        The ironic bit is that Hitler originally tried to convince the Poles to allow Germany to attack Russia through Polish territory, an idea the Poles rejected because they did not want to be caught up in a war between two of their historic enemies. If the Poles had agreed to Hitler's request, Hitler would have been able to bring the full force of the Nazi war machine against the Soviets without having to worry about fighting the West. Indeed, he would probably have received tacit approval from the UK and USA for a war on the Bolsheviks, and the Soviets would not have been able to rely on supplies (especially aircraft) from the Allies to keep them fighting. The original German staff planned for war to start in 1941, when they would have been much better prepared. Considering the Soviet forces were a rabble due to Stalin's purges, it is highly likely such a one-front war would have ended with the Nazis over-running Soviet Russia before the Winter of 1941, probably precipitated by counter-revolutions in the Baltic States, Ukraine and Georgia, all of which hated Soviet rule and welcomed the Nazis in 1941. It would not have stopped the Japs attacking the Allies in the East, but it would probably then have been another reason for the US, Brits and French to leave Hitler with a free hand in Russia whilst they took care of the Japanese Empire.

        So, no, the Russians did not win the War in Europe, but the Eastern Europeans trapped under Soviet control in 1945 certainly lost.

    9. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      "I seem to remember May 8th was Victory in Europe day"

      Aah yes, great game plan:

      1. Play both sides.

      2. Get forcesd into the war by Japan.

      3. Join with the British because that aligned with your war against Japan and post war imperial aspirations.

      4. Claim all the glory.

      5. Steal as much German IP as you can (rocketry etc).

      6. Invade Germany (still there today).

      But, still, let us give credit where credit is due: USA did some good - even great- stuff, and built up great international goodwill. However, that ship was smashed into the rocks at least a decade ago.

      Just because your grandfather gave his life in Europe does not give you a free pass to be an ass-hat today.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        Let's now consider the Soviet war plan:

        1. Play both sides. For the first two years be Hitler's ally invading Poland from the East and shooting all the officers taken prisoner. Also do not forget to take over the Baltic states and as much of Finland and Romania as possible.

        2. Get forced into the war by Germany and take a good beating for the fists half year of the war.

        3. Join with the US and British because that aligned with your war against Japan and post war imperial aspirations.

        4. Claim all the glory.

        5. Steal as much German IP as you can (rocketry etc).

        6. Invade Germany (and occupy its Eastern part for half a century). Do not forget to do the same with Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria.

        Is it any better?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        Did we invade and take half a country and then some for our own like the "heroic" Russians? Did we take every country we went through? Did we build the "Iron Curtain" or did we help cause it to fall? We have a base there in Germany, not a half a country for 50 years; until may I remind you the threat of a strong US Military and President helped keep the Russians in check and bankrupted their and our economy. The Russians are looking to take it all back. Are YOU going to stop them?

    10. veti Silver badge

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      The saddest thing is, for every dumb European who thinks they can do just fine without America, there's an equally dumb American who thinks they don't need Europe. And both of these idiots can vote.

      America and Europe have been intertwined ever since the day Christopher Columbus got home and said "you'll never believe what I found...". They're like a couple that's been married for 500 years - they may have their fantasies of independence, but that's all they'll ever be.

    11. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      > and you'll be better off if we're on your side rather than being "neutral" and politically correct

      With a few remarkable exceptions, I've never seen anything as useless as an American """soldier""" (one pair of quotes is not enough), and "your" (not you personally since you've never participated in an actual conflict) being on my side is the last thing I would want. I wouldn't even want "you" to be on my enemy's side, out of respect to them.

    12. Fihart

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      Generally I condemn those who attack America out of envy or fear. Much I don't like about their economic system, which often seems like an exaggerated version of the worst aspects of the modern British economy.

      My father's generation were appalled at the slowness with which America entered WW2, leaving Britain alone against the Nazis (remember Russia stayed neutral until Germany lost the Battle of Britain air-war). Britain was left broke, having sold most of its US investments to pay the US for military and other aid.

      However many individual Americans volunteered to join the UK armed forces, especially pilots including some women, long before Pearl Harbour. We cannot forget the mass sacrifice of US citizens (many of German origin) in two world wars fighting for a Europe they neither knew nor had reason to care about.

      1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

        1. Fihart

          Re: Fihart Where have you been Murphy?! @Matt Bryant

          Look, if you are so aggressive with people who agree with you I despair for you with anyone who doesn't.

          You are right, but that does not make me wrong. The Russians only reacted to the threat of the Nazis when their own soil was invaded. Of course they had behaved treacherously, empire building -- as they did again at the end of the war. I'm not a Leftie nor do I have any illusions about the ex Soviet Union and its current ambition to restore that empire.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        All of this just as we get headlines about the 900 jewish refugees who America sent back to Nazi Germany because they didn't have room for them.

        As Mary Prankster puts it, "The world is full of bastards and I've dated every one."

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

          And the British tried to keep them from landing in Palestine AFTER the war. Again, that's what you get from isolationist American politicians and Imperial Brits. How did that work out?

    13. Blitheringeejit
      Headmaster

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      All this discourse on world history is most enlighening, but somewhat missing the worst offence committed in this troll-ful post. Which is, of course:

      " to use an Americanism, stop looking a gift horse in the mouth"

      The poster may care to note that this "Americanism" was used at least as early as circa 400AD by St. Jerome, in his Letter to the Ephesians.

      Glad we've settled that one.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        I only used the "americanism" thing because none of you Brits understand American colloquiallisms. BTW, it was unlikely that they were speaking about a horse in that biblical passage, rather likely an ass, kind of like you.

    14. jbuk1

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      >but I seem to remember May 8th was Victory in Europe day. Perhaps you might want to understand >exactly who was responsible for the lions share of that victory.

      We're well aware of who won victory in Europe. It was the Russians. What is your point?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        As said before you idiot the Russians STOLE whole countries in WWII they did not save anyone but themselves. You are just adding to years of Russian propaganda.

        If the US did not enter the war you'd all be speaking German right now. That's my point!

    15. NogginTheNog
      Thumb Down

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      "If we want to be the world police, let us; obviously SOMEBODY has to do it."

      That all depends on exactly who's rules and laws said 'police force' is enforcing.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        Funny, don't call us next time they blow all your trade vessels out of the water. I'll be voting isolationist as the Russians invade your country.....

    16. Loyal Commenter Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      Excellent trolling, 8/10

    17. Stevie Silver badge

      Re: you'll be better off if we're on your side rather than being "neutral"

      because it is much better to have your life electronically snooped by the nonesuch agency than by the notKGBanymore.

      Those commie bastards spirit people away in the dead of night to do vile things to them in dark basements with no need for proof and no requirement to let the victims even know what they are supposed to have done ... oh bugger.

    18. Fatman

      Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

      Dear AC,

      You must have been absent during the time mid 20 Century History was being taught.

      While I (as an American) can appreciate the sacrifices made by your family members; you seem to forget one important thing.

      Form Sept 1, 1939, until Dec 11, 1941; officially the USA sat on its hands and let the people of Europe deal with Hitler and Mussolini. Many died during that period. To ignore those deaths, well I will just quote you:

      Forgetting their sacrifice borders on criminal behavior.

      From another Yank, enjoy a large serving of crow.

      1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      2. Matt Bryant Silver badge
        FAIL

        Re: Fatman Re: Where have you been Murphy?!

        "....Form Sept 1, 1939, until Dec 11, 1941; officially the USA sat on its hands and let the people of Europe deal with Hitler and Mussolini....." Not true. Not even close. Not only did Roosevelt ensure the US factories sold weapons to the Allies, he also used US ships both as transports for those weapons and as escorts against U-boat attack. As early as September 1940, Roosevelt gave the British fifty desperately needed destroyers in return for the rather vague rights to use British bases in the Caribbean. The later Lend-Lease policy, whilst still technically selling the Allies kit, was a massively generous act, allowing Britain and later Russia virtually unlimited credit at the expense of the US people. It almost bankrupted the USA and was considered as anything but a neutral act. It allowed Britain, which had burnt through her gold reserve in 1940, to continue buying American weapons at a crucial point in the War. Ironically, the whole Lend-Lease policy was one of the Democrats, and was largely opposed by the Republicans as they thought it might drag the US into the War. Another Democrat policy was that of the internment of over 100,000 Japanese-Americans for the duration of the War, something that makes the much hyped Gitmo numbers look tiny. So, how does that crow taste?

  8. DerekCurrie

    So Put Up The Iron Curtain Again And Shut Up

    Russia: Criminal Nation

    Russia: War Mongering Nation

    Russia: Lost in the past

    Russia: Most annoying country ever

    So STFU already, put up the iron curtain again and go lose yourselves in bad ideas the way you used to do. Leave the rest of the world alone while you're off in the corner playing with your insecure ego.

    1. tekgun

      Re: So Put Up The Iron Curtain Again And Shut Up

      Works quite well this way as well.

      USA: Criminal Nation

      USA: War Mongering Nation

      USA: Lost in the past

      USA: Most annoying country ever

  9. Chris G Silver badge

    World Police

    Bringing democracy and a better way of life to ; Iraq, Afghanistan,Libya and possibly Syria and the Ukraine soon.

    Drone Strike deaths Policing countries you are not at war with:

    Reported deaths and injuries

    Pakistan 2004–2014

    CIA Drone Strikes

    Total strikes: 383

    Obama strikes: 332

    Total killed: 2,296-3,719

    Civilians killed: 416-957

    Children killed: 168-202

    Injured: 1,089-1,639

    Yemen 2002–2014

    US Covert Action

    Confirmed drone strikes: 64-76

    Total killed: 334-486

    Civilians killed: 34-84

    Children killed: 7-8

    Injured: 78-196

    Possible extra drone strikes: 93-112

    Total killed: 315-505

    Civilians killed: 24-48

    Children killed: 6-9

    Injured: 85-118

    Other covert operations: 14-79

    Total killed: 150-386

    Civilians killed: 59-88

    Children killed: 24-26

    Injured: 22-115

    Somalia 2007–2014

    US Covert Action

    Drone strikes: 5-8

    Total killed: 10-24

    Civilians killed: 0-1

    Children killed: 0

    Injured: 2-3

    Other covert operations: 8-11

    Total killed: 40-141

    Civilians killed: 7-47

    Children killed: 0-2

    Injured: 11-21

    None of these executions are the result of the due process of law, just the World Police deciding to take out another alleged member of the opposition,

    What would you say if cops in the States behaved that way?

    I have French, Dutch and even German friends whose families did NOT volunteer to take part in the 2nd War but their families had no choice and suffered a great deal.

    My father narrowly escaped being shot down by an American fighter in Italy and he was crewing a Marauder (in case you don't know ans American built bomber).

    Maybe the world would be safer if your politicians were all isolationists.

    1. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: World Police

      "Bringing democracy and a better way of life to ; Iraq, Afghanistan,Libya and possibly Syria and the Ukraine soon."

      Not to mention knocking over democratically elected govts which didn't do what they wanted and replacing them with someone who would: Iran, Iraq and others

      The latest "free trade treaties" seem to be an extension of this policy and could simply be reworded "If you agree with our warped ideas of intellectual property lifetime, you may be allowed to sell things to us"

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: World Police

        > Not to mention knocking over democratically elected govts which didn't do what they wanted and replacing them with someone who would: Iran, Iraq and others

        (cough) Ukraine (cough)

      2. bpfh

        Re: World Police

        I think actually the ones that helped changed Iran into the stable and fun loving country that it is today were actually the French when they kicked Khomeni out and sent the mad mullah home...

        Also, remember that it was also the French that sent their army overseas to help terrorists overthrow the legitimate ruling power of His Majesty King George III, but we don't hear the French bitching about how the yanks forgot how they won their freedom and independance with the help of General Lafayette and the Royal French Army...

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Iron Curtain

    You do realise the Iron Curtain was made up of Eastern Europe...?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iron_Curtain

    Winston Churchill's "Sinews of Peace" address[30] of 5 March 1946, at Westminster College, used the term "iron curtain" in the context of Soviet-dominated Eastern Europe:

    From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic an "Iron Curtain" has descended across the continent. Behind that line lie all the capitals of the ancient states of Central and Eastern Europe. Warsaw, Berlin, Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Belgrade, Bucharest and Sofia; all these famous cities and the populations around them lie in what I must call the Soviet sphere, and all are subject, in one form or another, not only to Soviet influence but to a very high and in some cases increasing measure of control from Moscow.

    Be careful what you wish for...

  11. This post has been deleted by its author

  12. Lars Silver badge
    Alien

    Wow, getting a bit hot here

    My feelings towards the USSR was never good, but there was a time with Gorbachev and Yeltsin where you started to feel that something decent would eventually come out of it. I am sure lots of Russians did that too. Unfortunately Russia is, with Putin, back to square one. In other words it's not about Russians but about Putin and the way he is manipulating the Russian people. Still if the Americans where allowed to build their GPS stations in Russia then why should the Russians not be allowed the same in the USA. Are the Americans still pissed off and surprised that there are other "powers" who can do it, Like the EU, Russia and China. As far as I remember the USA tried to tell the EU that that effort and costs where just silly as there was already the GPS. Now I will support the EU to carry on with their project. There is a "funny" story about some South American country who was asked by the USA to have the right to build a military base in that country. That was OK as long as they had the right to build one in the USA too. Now that was funny indeed, very funny. But the not so funny thing is that the USA is running out of stupidity without running out of stupidity at all.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    GPS Stations?

    Just to say, I'm supposed to know a thing or two about this GPS thing, and I haven't a fucking clue what you're actually talking about in this article (and I strongly suspect you don't either).

    I can take a couple guesses as to what you mean by "GPS stations" but those would be just that, guesses. Can you elaborate, please? The article as it stands is just utter rubbish.

    1. Irongut

      Re: GPS Stations?

      "GPS has 16 monitor stations throughout the world that transmit data back to satellites to improve location accuracy, but none are located in Russia.

      However, Russia has hosted nine GPS-based ground stations since 1995 that transmit geodesic data back to global data centers, theoretically making it possible to improve positioning data.

      But the stations do not provide real-time data and are only used to measure annual continental drift, a spokesman for the Geophysical Service of the Russian Academy of Sciences, which runs the stations, said Thursday."

      From here.

  14. smartypants

    Stop feeding the hawks!

    We clever chaps here in the commentard area seem to have constructed a tiny but perfect simulation of the idiotic process that fuels all war right on this very thread.

    Don't feed the hawks!

    1. ian 22

      Re: Stop feeding the hawks!

      Well said, smartypants. 'ave an upvote.

      These ranticles have by now trotted out every shibboleth of the last 50 years, although Trevor's exclusive one-world club is creative. However, not one of the commentards has used ALL CAPS! Clearly they must try harder.

  15. foo_bar_baz

    Black and White

    The USSR kicked back the Germans, but that didn't make the USSR any less an evil empire than Nazi Germany was. Today's Russia is so close to fascism it makes me wonder if anyone in Russia sees the irony, or even thought about what a fascist is, other than a generic label for the evil enemy. Nationalism, militarism, corporatism, authoritarianism, nostalgic conservative social values, co-opting the church, cult of personality ... "we're just peacefully the rights of those speaking our language in neighbouring Sudentenl^H^H I mean Ukraine." Fucking idiots, it makes me wonder what Russians are taught for history in school.

    The USA kicked back the Germans and helped rebuild parts of Europe (so they could keep selling US goods), but that doesn't make recent US policies any less questionabĺe. The US political system is a mockery of democracy, it's a country led by the nose by corporate interests with the sole intent to control and pillage not only the US but the rest of the world too. The best thing about the US is at least lip service is being paid to democracy and values, so it can be measured against that standard.

    Now to the black and white part. Can you handle nuance? I don't hate Russians or Merkins, I just hate what their governments are doing in their name.

    1. Solmyr ibn Wali Barad

      Re: Black and White

      "He who battles monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster."

      Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just saying

    All those "Doomsday Preppers" might have been right all along, just off by a few years.

    I have GM counters, HAZMAT suits etc but doubt its going to help, if that little reprocessing plant on the coast gets hit by anything big then Europe will be glowing in the dark.

  17. Martijn Otto

    Finally

    Someone who speaks up against the idiocy where the U.S. expects everybody to fall in line but does not cooperate themselves at all.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Finally (another foolish hypocrite!)

      Just so we understand each other Martijn, I won't give a vote or a damn for any politician that condones anything to do with the backstabbing, ineffectual, corrupt scum in the UN. The British even signed the treaties and then made a national secret of their use of torture, murder, eavesdropping etc. Ask any Northern Irishman....

      At least the US has enough self respect NOT to sign anything when they know there is no other choice/way to get that critical information.

      If I remember correctly didn't so many Norwegians conspire with the Germans because it was easier than fighting them?

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You turn your back for one minute..

    And El Reg's comments section turns into an amalgamate of the comments sections from any number of not-very good newspapers. At least I learned something about GPS ground stations before the whole thing degenerated into a left-right-left-right-left-right slanging match.

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