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Russian Bear Looms Over Dutch Referendum

Rogue Valley

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Russian Bear Looms Over Dutch Referendum


A Referendum on the Values of Europe


Dutch get second chance to snub EU


From sample polls, political analysts and pundits on the continent feel the EU/UA Association Agreement referendum in the Netherlands today will not pass. The EU/UA Agreement has already been passed and ratified by the governments of all 28 EU nations. Due to a quirk in its laws, issues in the Netherlands can be put to a national referendum if enough initial signatures are obtained. This is what occurred here. Although the referendum is non-binding, the Netherlands government said it will abide by it.

What we have here in reality is a referendum that serves as a proxy for others. Moscow has placed enormous resources into obtaining a "No" vote in order to block Ukraine's wish to leave the Russian sphere of influence and join the European community of nations. This referendum also is serving as a proxy vote on the EU. Euro-skeptics in the Netherlands see this referendum as a very visible way to deliver a political blow to the concept of the European Union.
 

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Simpleχity;1065740976 said:
Moscow has placed enormous resources into obtaining a "No" vote in order to block Ukraine's wish to leave the Russian sphere of influence and join the European community of nations.

Do you have any evidence of Moscow spending big to support the 'no' campaign in the NL?
 

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Do you have any evidence of Moscow spending big to support the 'no' campaign in the NL?
Spending big? I said they expended resources. It is in Moscow's political interests that the referendum fails.
 

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Do you have any evidence of Moscow spending big to support the 'no' campaign in the NL?

Actually it was reported German public radio in the morning information program that a large number of Ukrainians had gone to Holland to help the "Yes-Vote" initiative.
 

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Simpleχity;1065741066 said:
Spending big? I said they expended resources. It is in Moscow's political interests that the referendum fails.

Why? Failure would weaken the Ukrainian and EU positions.
 

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Simpleχity;1065740976 said:
Russian Bear Looms Over Dutch Referendum


A Referendum on the Values of Europe


Dutch get second chance to snub EU


From sample polls, political analysts and pundits on the continent feel the EU/UA Association Agreement referendum in the Netherlands today will not pass. The EU/UA Agreement has already been passed and ratified by the governments of all 28 EU nations. Due to a quirk in its laws, issues in the Netherlands can be put to a national referendum if enough initial signatures are obtained. This is what occurred here. Although the referendum is non-binding, the Netherlands government said it will abide by it.

What we have here in reality is a referendum that serves as a proxy for others. Moscow has placed enormous resources into obtaining a "No" vote in order to block Ukraine's wish to leave the Russian sphere of influence and join the European community of nations. This referendum also is serving as a proxy vote on the EU. Euro-skeptics in the Netherlands see this referendum as a very visible way to deliver a political blow to the concept of the European Union.

The important thing is not the referendum or Ukrainian and Russian propaganda. What is interesting is how the government will react to a "No" vote. What seems to be expected is a ratification of the treaty no matter and a lot of hot air about how much the EU politicians and elite care about voters and democracy.
 

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Simpleχity;1065741066 said:
Spending big? I said they expended resources. It is in Moscow's political interests that the referendum fails.

Not to quibble, but you did say "enormous resources", so "spending big" seems a reasonable paraphrase.
 

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Simpleχity;1065741066 said:
Spending big? I said they expended resources. It is in Moscow's political interests that the referendum fails.

But no evidence of any such expenditure of 'enormous resources', your words, not mine. Noted.
 

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Actually it was reported German public radio in the morning information program that a large number of Ukrainians had gone to Holland to help the "Yes-Vote" initiative.

So the Ukrainians are expending resources to swing the vote in their favour, I guess it would be logical if the Russians were doing the same, but is there any evidence of that?
 

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So the Ukrainians are expending resources to swing the vote in their favour, I guess it would be logical if the Russians were doing the same, but is there any evidence of that?

Dutch referendum puts relations with Russia under spotlight

Until the [MH17 Malaysia Airlines explosion over Russia] the Dutch government was seen as one of the closest EU countries to Moscow, with a huge amount of Russian trade flowing through Rotterdam’s port and scores of Dutch companies actively investing in Russia. During the Winter Olympics in the Russian city of Sochi in 2014, the Dutch king was photographed enjoying a Heineken beer with Mr Putin — even as the rest of Europe was distancing itself from Moscow as the revolution in Kiev’s Maidan square reached its climax.

A No vote would leave Mark Rutte, the Dutch prime minister, in an extremely tight political spot without actually stopping the EU-Ukraine treaty.
Moreover, with just a week to voting day, the terrorist attacks in Brussels have overshadowed the campaign.
But it is another outrage, in the rural countryside of east Ukraine two years ago, that is informing the referendum debate.
Dutch relations with Russia are hugely sensitive in the wake of the July 2014 explosion of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over Ukrainian airspace controlled by Russia-backed separatists. A total of 298 people lost their lives on the flight which departed from Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport carrying 194 Dutch nationals.
The subsequent moves by Nato to strengthen its presence on the EU’s eastern borders has added to a heated debate about the relationship between the EU and Russia.
“Without giving support to Putin’s vision, we do understand the feeling in Russia that the EU and Nato are moving eastward, because those are the facts,” said Harry van Bommel, a member of parliament and foreign affairs spokesman for the leftwing Socialist party, which is advocating rejection. Ratification of the EU-Ukraine association agreement “will absolutely lead to more tension with Russia and that is in nobody’s interests — Russia and Europe need each other”.
But such arguments sound like “parroting, almost word for word, the Kremlin line”, said Michiel van Hulten, a former Dutch MEP who now heads Stem Voor Nederland (Vote For Netherlands), a leading pro-EU campaign group.
The Putin-focused debate between the campaigns is a reflection of attitudes in the broader electorate. According to data published this month by I&O Research, a Dutch polling institute, 58 per cent of Yes supporters think a rejection of the trade pact would be a victory for Mr Putin. Meanwhile, 44 per cent of those favouring No believe giving their support to the agreement would put the Dutch relationship with Russia at risk.

There is no pressure from the EU saying “Ukraine can’t co-operate or trade with Russia”, Kees Verhoeven, a D66 parliamentarian, said. “Putin is the only one making it a black and white choice for Ukraine.” The Dutch prime minister has publicly wavered over how involved he should become. Critics say Mr Rutte’s reluctance to campaign reflects growing anti-EU sentiment in the Netherlands and among his supporters. Although his centre-right VVD party has a long and constructive role in Brussels, many of its voters have fled to the far-right, Eurosceptic party of Geert Wilders, who currently leads in the national polls.

So, perhaps not 'monetary' spending, but Moscow is certainly using its lengthy relationship with the Netherlands to leverage against the pro-EU policies.
 

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So the Ukrainians are expending resources to swing the vote in their favour, I guess it would be logical if the Russians were doing the same, but is there any evidence of that?

The only evidence I have is the reports on German public radio. Of course, the state run media news are tainted by a conflict of interest in this and other pro-EU matters and are thus suspect.
 

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Well, with the referendum participation having reached more than 30 pct, that makes it valid.

It doesn't make it binding though (whole thing has a mere advisory function) and indeed it would be hard to sell the round about 64% no votes (of approx 32pct participating) as anything other than around 20 pct of overall possible vote.

But I hear just now that gubmint is saying they can't now just write the Ukrainian thing into law as designed.

It'll be interesting to see what they come up with.
 

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The Guardian view on the Netherlands: another EU referendum, another inadequate debate

Netherlands vote on Ukraine cheers anti-EU camp

Dutch voters reject trade deal out of anger against E.U.

Putin Looks To The Dutch For A Ukraine Boost

Personal observations:

The EU/UA Association Agreement is already in force and this referendum will not alter that.

Dozens of EU association agreements already exist. This particular plebiscite wasn't really about Ukraine, it was far more about the EU.

The timing here (preceding the Brexit vote) was very important for EUroskeptics across the continent.

The vote was hardly representative with just 32% bothering to turn up and vote.

Surprising. 169 Dutch citizens lost their lives when pro-Russia rebels in eastern Ukraine shot down MH17 with a Russian BUK missile. The Dutch no vote here is a gift in Putin's political pocket.
 

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One of the organisers of the referendum campaign, Arjan van Dixhoorn, admitted to NRC that "we don't really care about Ukraine."

Far-right and EUrosceptic parties, not just within the Netherlands, seized on the opportunity to attack a major EU policy amidst growing discontent as a result of economic problems and nationalist tensions fueled by the refugee crisis and Islamist terrorism.


Eurocrats investigate deal backed by Nigel Farage behind Dutch referendum

Nigel Farage is being investigated for using EU subsidies (Institute for Direct Democracy in Europe / IDDE) to pay the popular Dutch daily newspaper De Telegraaf £31,000 ($43,663) for a full page advertisement in September 2015 urging the Dutch to sign the referendum petition. Many feel that the petition would not have gathered the requisite signatures without this advert. Farange said he expects reciprocity from Dutch EUrosceptic organizations before the Brexit vote on June 23.


This Dutch referendum was never about Ukraine per se. It was always viewed by anti-EU elements as a valuable tool to inflict blunt-force political-trauma on the European Union.
 

Abbazorkzog

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Simpleχity;1065744785 said:
One of the organisers of the referendum campaign, Arjan van Dixhoorn, admitted to NRC that "we don't really care about Ukraine."

Far-right and EUrosceptic parties, not just within the Netherlands, seized on the opportunity to attack a major EU policy amidst growing discontent as a result of economic problems and nationalist tensions fueled by the refugee crisis and Islamist terrorism.


Eurocrats investigate deal backed by Nigel Farage behind Dutch referendum

Nigel Farage is being investigated for using EU subsidies (Institute for Direct Democracy in Europe / IDDE) to pay the popular Dutch daily newspaper De Telegraaf £31,000 ($43,663) for a full page advertisement in September 2015 urging the Dutch to sign the referendum petition. Many feel that the petition would not have gathered the requisite signatures without this advert. Farange said he expects reciprocity from Dutch EUrosceptic organizations before the Brexit vote on June 23.


This Dutch referendum was never about Ukraine per se. It was always viewed by anti-EU elements as a valuable tool to inflict blunt-force political-trauma on the European Union.

Simpleχity;1065744506 said:
The Guardian view on the Netherlands: another EU referendum, another inadequate debate

Netherlands vote on Ukraine cheers anti-EU camp

Dutch voters reject trade deal out of anger against E.U.

Putin Looks To The Dutch For A Ukraine Boost

Personal observations:

The EU/UA Association Agreement is already in force and this referendum will not alter that.

Dozens of EU association agreements already exist. This particular plebiscite wasn't really about Ukraine, it was far more about the EU.

The timing here (preceding the Brexit vote) was very important for EUroskeptics across the continent.

The vote was hardly representative with just 32% bothering to turn up and vote.

Surprising. 169 Dutch citizens lost their lives when pro-Russia rebels in eastern Ukraine shot down MH17 with a Russian BUK missile. The Dutch no vote here is a gift in Putin's political pocket.

Wtf? They actually voted it down? I never thought they actually would. WTF! The world is going insane.
The Netherlands government should be investigated for Kremlin connections.
Like...yesterday.
 

Rogue Valley

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Wtf? They actually voted it down? I never thought they actually would. WTF! The world is going insane.
The Netherlands government should be investigated for Kremlin connections.
Like...yesterday.
afp%20ukraine%20protestors_0_0_0_0_0_0_0_0_0_0.jpg

Euromaidan - they dared to dream

Thousands of Ukrainians have perished since 2014 to escape the Russian Bear. Unfortunately, neither the Dutch government nor the EU aristocrats put much effort into showing the Dutch people why the EU/UA Association Agreement was a positive for the Dutch, the EU, and Ukraine.

Jubilant EUrosceptic Dutch populist leader Geert Wilders called it "the beginning of the end of the EU". With the Brexit looming, he may be absolutely correct.

Clear winner in Dutch Referendum → Russia
Clear loser → the Netherlands
Left in limbo → Ukraine, a united Europe, and democracy

Dutch vote on Ukraine treaty really a bid to stop EU 'in its tracks'

Putin Gloats as Dutch Voters Rattle European Unity
 

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Simpleχity;1065748176 said:
afp%20ukraine%20protestors_0_0_0_0_0_0_0_0_0_0.jpg

Euromaidan - they dared to dream

Thousands of Ukrainians have perished since 2014 to escape the Russian Bear. Unfortunately, neither the Dutch government nor the EU aristocrats put much effort into showing the Dutch people why the EU/UA Association Agreement was a positive for the Dutch, the EU, and Ukraine.

Jubilant EUrosceptic Dutch populist leader Geert Wilders called it "the beginning of the end of the EU". With the Brexit looming, he may be absolutely correct.

Clear winner in Dutch Referendum → Russia
Clear loser → the Netherlands
Left in limbo → Ukraine, a united Europe, and democracy

Dutch vote on Ukraine treaty really a bid to stop EU 'in its tracks'

Putin Gloats as Dutch Voters Rattle European Unity

NATO harshly criticizes weak Netherlands defense spending

According to Hennis, NATO is concerned that the Netherlands’ week defense sending will lead to “other allies providing a disproportionate share of the necessary capacity”. She told broadcaster NOS that this is not new criticism.

Exhaustive Study Finds Global Elite Hiding Up to $32 Trillion in Offshore Accounts

Panama Papers: Why Did Clinton and Obama Flip Flop on Trade Deal?

The leaked documents, which detail how the global elite has used Panamanian law to shield income and information from national tax authorities, has refocused the public’s attention on the myriad ways the powerful hide their wealth.

As with all free-trade agreements, the Panamanian pact does help certain sectors of the U.S. economy that have comparative advantages to firms in Panama, like those in the pharmaceutical and agricultural industries. These industries lobbied hard for the agreement, but it’s likely that President Obama and Secretary Clinton had other motives as well.

Leaked 'Panama Papers' allege Irish links

The Irish Times has said that in over 360 Irish companies alleged to have links with Ireland, one third of the companies have been represented by The Pegasus Trust.

Panama Papers the Irish connection: Arms trading and off-shore accounts

The Irish Times helped the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) with the story - it reports that the documents show that Intertrade Projects Consultants Ltd, a company with a registered address on Botanic Avenue in Drumcondra, north-Dublin, acted as a sales agent for customers which included one of the world’s largest aerospace and defence conglomerates.

Intertrade Projects Consultants' clients include an Italian firm, Finmeccanica which is one of the world's largest aerospace and defence conglomerates. It deals in military aircraft, torpedoes, and electronic warfare equipment.

There is a second involved in the leak, Pegasus Trust, which is also based on Botanic Avenue in Dublin. It offers corporate services and is shown to have acted as an intermediatory between Intertrade and Mossack Fonseca - the law firm in Panama at the centre of the Panama Papers.

Unanswered questions: The Flannery controversy, Bank of Ireland, and the Panama Papers

It has now been the bones of a working week since leaked documents, published by the Irish Times, raised questions over the involvement of Fine Gael strategist and Rehab chief executive Frank Flannery with a British Virgin Islands (BVI) company, wherein funds were allegedly used as part security for a mortgage secured by Mr Flannery in London in the mid-1990s.

Over 300 Irish firms named in 'Panama Papers' data leak that has rocked the financial world
 
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Do you have any evidence of Moscow spending big to support the 'no' campaign in the NL?

Good point, because unlike the evil Americans, the Russians never, ever meddle in the internal affairs another country.
 

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netherlands.jpg

Dutch Socialist party members campaign for a no vote on the EU’s association agreement with Ukraine, April 2016




A Dutch Nee that Bodes Ill for Europe


Dutch ‘No’ Vote on Ukraine Reverberates Across Europe


This Dutch referendum spells trouble for Europe


Ukraine has been part of Europe for nearly a millennium


Dutch farce on Ukraine: Is there a way out?


Britain’s Pro-Kremlin Pols Swayed the Dutch Referendum on Ukraine


The Dutch just showed the world how Russia influences Western European elections

My instinct is that Europe's EUrosceptics, Socialists, far right nationalist parties, and Putinista's will force an abandonment of the EU sanctions against Russia on the next vote in June/July. This despite the facts that Moscow has not returned Crimea to its rightful owner nor has Moscow fulfilled even one of its Minsk II obligations regarding eastern Ukraine.




32E43E4800000578-0-image-a-5_1460072647313.jpg

UKIP leader Nigel Farage used EU money to advertise against the EU Association Agreement in the Netherlands
 
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