Faits Divers, Or, if You Will, Straws in the Wind as WWIII Blows In

Now that www.smotrim.ru is back up and running, I have been immersing myself in Russian news, which in the past couple of days has included an assortment of separate items, or faits divers as the French would have it, which are frankly ominous when taken all together. Why ominous? Because they fit the description of WWIII that the most recent Russian talk shows say has already begun and is about to transition from hybrid war to hot war.

A couple of days ago Russian news showed images of six Yars ICBMs rolling into Moscow on their self-propelled launchers. Yars, to those who are not familiar with the Russian missile families, are the backbone of the present ground-based Russian strategic nuclear strike force. They date from 2007 and their numbers are listed in the now scrapped New Start arms limitation treaty. These solid fuel three stage rockets have a range of 12,000 km and carry multiple warheads (MIRV). Each launch unit on wheels weighs 100 tons and their route into town was carefully selected accordingly. But what are they doing in Moscow?

The Vesti reporter said they have been brought there in preparation for the Victory in Europe Day parade. However, that takes place on May 9th, so the arrival now two months ahead catches your attention.

Then today Russian news informed us that a United States “Doomsday Plane,” as it is known on the street, officially a Boeing E-4 Advanced Airborn Command Post capable of supervising military operations in case of nuclear war, has landed earlier today in Iceland on its way to Europe. To Europe? Why is a Doomsday Plane going to be stationed here unless a nuclear scenario is being worked out by the US and Allied forces?

It is also worth mentioning something else you will not find in the New York Times or the Frankfurter Allgemeine today: yesterday the air space over Petersburg and within 200 km radius of the city was closed to civilian air traffic. No explanation was given at the time, but today mail.ru briefly ran an article explaining that there had been intelligence reports of a possible Ukrainian drone strike on the city. Meanwhile Moscow today claimed to have recovered fragments of a drone downed in the Moscow Oblast bearing Ukrainian military signs. All such attacks in the very center of European Russia must be seen as a direct provocation.

However, the Russian military yesterday and today came forward with information about far more serious provocations that the Ukrainians have been planning in the Donbas and Pridnestrovie (Russian patrolled territory in Moldova). The Russian military gave details of the delivery by train into Kramatorsk of cases of poisonous chemicals which, they say, the Ukrainians have planned to release into the atmosphere to poison the population of this city in the Ukrainian occupied portion of the Donetsk Oblast, intending to put the blame for the chemical attack on Russia, just as US and British forces had done in Syria three years ago when they staged and filmed a supposed attack on civilians by the Assad government forces. Only this time the chemicals would be real and many civilians would be endangered. The Russian military also issued a detailed statement today on cases of radioactive materials which the Ukrainians have just now delivered by train to Moldova to stage a similar provocation that could be blamed on the Russians.

It is fairly obvious why these vile attacks were being prepared by Ukrainian military precisely now – to distract from the impending fall of Bakhmut which they have defended in the past several weeks at a cost of more than 20,000 casualties.

The aforementioned intended ‘false flag’ operations approach the realm of the insane. In that sense they reflect perfectly well the mentality of Zelensky and his neo-Nazi collaborators, as well as the madness of Nuland and other sponsors of Zelensky in the U.S. State Department.

As I said at the outset, these assorted facts taken separately are worrisome. Taken all together, they provide compelling reason why this war should be ended by negotiations forced on Zelensky at the earliest opportunity. The Wall Street Journal has in the last few days reported that both Macron and Scholz have, behind closed doors, been telling him it is time to sit down with the Russians. Perhaps when the Democrats take in the power of Donald Trump’s latest message on Ukraine in a Tweet that has attracted nearly 4 million views in the United States, and reckon how this logic can be used in the 2024 elections, they will also see the wisdom of pressing for talks now, before all hell breaks loose. See

Gilbert Doctorow is a Brussels-based political analyst. His latest book is Does Russia Have a Future? Reprinted with permission from his blog.

© Gilbert Doctorow, 2023

35 thoughts on “Faits Divers, Or, if You Will, Straws in the Wind as WWIII Blows In”

  1. I always thought that Dr. Strangelove was fiction, but these psychopaths on all sides are beginning to make me think that it was a description of a future reality.

  2. “Why is a Doomsday Plane going to be stationed here unless a nuclear scenario is being worked out by the US and Allied forces?”

    Nuclear scenarios are ALWAYS being worked out by the US and Allied forces, but I suspect the explanation is pretty simple.

    Starting in 2021, the US Air Force began working on developing a replacement for the E-4.

    Deploying an E-4 right now will be used in two ways by lobbyists trying to get that replacement ordered.

    First, they’ll find things for it to do over there, even in a non-nuclear environment, to justify continuing to have “Doomsday Planes” at all.

    Second, they’ll point out deficiencies in what it can do to justify spending the money on a newer model.

    Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. But sometimes a cigar isn’t even really a cigar, it’s just an ad trying to sell more cigars.

  3. Followed the link and alas Google translate won’t work but at Mail.ru it does! Some day RT will be allowed, Tor Browser gets you there but running that is kind of sketchy to me; target on ones back stuff otherwise known as paranoia. But then ….
    “Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they aren’t after you.”
    Joseph Heller, Catch-22
    Now I really should be paranoid: the Russian site is showing me the weather in Minneapolis! They know where I am…maybe ;-)
    But, I’m tricky (and cheap); I’ve got a PC’s for People hotspot (I’m low income because it’s cheap to live in your own paid off home in my rural unincorporated town, so why bust my butt at my age?) that shows a IP from where PC’s is located not the state I’m in.

    1. Weird. I just ran the link through Google Translate, no VPN or anything, and it worked fine. Are you in the US? I wonder if specific ISPs might be blocking certain things, rather than it being Google or some higher-level government filter?

      1. I got the dreaded pop up saying it couldn’t which seems to happen when a page’s appearence is the same as this one was. Maybe it’s because I’m running MS10, fully updated not the version loaded on it which was the original one that still acctivates even though it’s way past that first year of free 10 updates for older machines/OS’s. It still activates a W7 COA (I’ve got those a plenty; even have a stack of parts that have the stickers;-) then updates to today’s version; why buy W10 to load on my laptops?
        I still have a stack of 20 or more Dell e6410s (from when I refurbish them sold on fleabay) so it will a while before I get machines that can use 11 or the upcoming 12…lol.

          1. I plan to run Ubuntu on one of our computers. One still has W7, the other has W11. Or, I may get a laptop loaded with Ubuntu.

          2. Right now my daily driver computer is a “mini PC” that I paid about $100 for. Looks like it’s $120ish now on Amazon, the ATOPNUC Mini PC. It came with Ubuntu installed (there’s also a Windows 10 version), but I converted to Lubuntu, a slightly lighter distribution. Does everything I need — I work pretty much entirely on the web.

            My previous machine was a Raspberry Pi 4B with extra RAM. For the last few years, I’ve made a hobby of seeing if I can get by with the smallest/cheapest computers. The Pi worked, but the ATOPNUC is actually cheaper and works better.

          3. Thank you for the info.I pretty much know enough to be dangerous. (I just checked and Newegg carries them too)

  4. Donald Trump is now the towering voice of reason.
    I think that’s actually in Revelations.

    1. I know! It’s not that there’s anything good about Trump, it’s that the others have become such psychopathic war mongers.

      I wouldn’t count on Trump to do anything he says about making peace. When he was president, he filled his administration with psycho war mongers like John Bolton and Mike Pompeo, and they sabotaged everything he tried to do in that regard. Trump only cares about his money and his ego, and he’ll fold like a wet piece of paper when it comes to anything else like peace.

      1. He’s decided being a peace candidate gives him his best shot because a lot of people want it and he’s the only one who’ll be selling it. And to be fair, the only thing that distinguished his single term was that he didn’t start any new wars, which makes him something of a presidential Gandhi.

        1. His other major actions as president were a huge tax cut for the rich, and attempted destruction of federally-owned natural land by doing things like substantially reducing the size of National Monuments and other bad actions. In this regard, Biden has been a lot better, though certainly not anywhere good enough.

        2. Even if he doesn’t believe it. He famously asked why we have nukes if we don’t use them.

          1. 11-8-2022:
            “But maybe our country would be better off if I actually had the nuclear codes because our enemies would be afraid, unlike they are now.”

            Makes you feel all warm and safe now doesn’t it?

          2. Scarier than Hillary? Liz Truss? Kamala? Whoever the Republican PTB put up? Tough call. I kind of like the way he wears his psychobomber on his sleeve. At least he’s up front about the craziness.

          3. I don’t consider being upfront about craziness to be a virtue. And when I speak of Trump I speak of Trump. I wouldn’t want any of those crazy bitches you mention, or DeSantis, instead of Trump but I refuse to compare them if it means that it sounds like any part of me actually wants him.

          4. I don’t expect he would use the word crazy but I think transparent is about as close to honest as we’re going to get with any of them. And Trump doesn’t have more crazy, he has less veneer. I kind of stepped off the carousel when he talked about torturing people’s families and that sailed through the Overton window. We’re doomed.

        3. Sure, if Gandhi sanctioned half the world and lifted rules of engagement in all the ongoing conflicts so killing would be easier. It’s one thing to brag about not starting any new wars but only if you don’t escalate all of the ongoing ones. Plus, he sent troops into Somalia and bombed them more than W and Obama combined.

          1. They’re all evil, I see no point in trying to determine which pile of sh*t smells the worst. The only possible difference is that if Clinton had been elected in 2016, there’s a good chance she would have started WWIII because of her threat to create a no-fly zone over Syria. Considering what a psychopathic war monger Clinton is, it’s really likely that she would have followed through, including shooting down Russian planes as she also threatened at least twice.

          2. I agree that Clinton would have tried to create a no-fly zone over Syria but I don’t believe she ever would have convinced the Pentagon.

          3. She wouldn’t have had to convince anyone. She would have been Commander in Chief.

          4. Right. Like when Trump talked about taking troops out of Syria and Germany. Maybe someone would have convinced her that a no-fly zone would mean WW3.

          5. Trump was not a politician and had no political experience before he got elected. Additionally, all he seems to really care about is his money and his ego. Trump talked about removing troops from some countries and making peace with North Korea, but he folded like a wet piece of paper as soon as he got any resistance (on top of loading his cabinet with the worst war mongers on the planet). Clinton is totally loathsome, but she does know what she’s doing, unlike Trump when he was president. I have no doubt that if she wanted a no-fly zone over Syria and for it to mean shooting down all planes including Russian ones, she would have gotten that.

  5. Trump, the “man of peace”, withdrew from the INF treaty with Russia, gave Kiev Javelin rockets, then, to cap it off, withdrew from the JCPOA with Iran.

    1. Trump is no peace candidate or leader. He just realizes that most of these wars and threats of war disrupt business and money (he apparently doesn’t have any investments in the military/industrial complex), which along with his ego is his main concern.

  6. Wasn’t it Einstein that said: World War Three will be our last?… Let me clarify that statement: We’ll all be DEAD.

    …They went out with a BANG, not a whimper…

    1. He said that he couldn’t predict how WWIII would be fought, but that WWIV would be fought with sticks & stones.

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