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In Russia, Locals 'Exhausted' From Being Blamed For Everything


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#1 USC

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Posted 12 November 2017 - 10:31 PM

Kenneth Rapoza , Contributor

I cover business and investing in emerging markets. Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.

 

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Two women walk next to the walls of the Vysokopetrovsky Monastery in downtown Moscow on November 8, 2017. Russians feel like they've become the "black sheep" of the world as political divisions between their country and the West continue to expand.  (Photo by MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/Getty Images)

 

Looks like the Russians failed to get two Republicans elected in New Jersey and Virginia this week. Better luck next time.

The Russians are coming! Only instead of parachuting into the Inner Empire of California with AK-74s strapped to their backs, they're hacking Yahoo! and Democratic National Committee emails and blocking tackle for politicians who only seem to be despised by establishment politicians and their friends -- whether they're in Britain or France, the U.S. or Catalonia.

Yes, according to an official Washington Post op-ed, even the Catalonia independence vote can be traced to the geopolitical wiles of Vladimir Putin. And you thought the CIA was omnipotent!

It's no joke. According to SecureWorks, the DNC emails were indeed spear-phished successfully by Russians. Whether they were on orders from the Russian government is unclear. SecureWorks, a Dell subsidiary, is at least more trustworthy than CrowdStrike and Fusion GPS, a paid smear monger, and more legit than the usual anti-Putin, fiction writing Ukrainian activists who help Washington's Russia-haters keep Putin on the defense.

 

The thing is, maybe Putin is not the greatest guy in the world. Maybe there are a lot of shady people in Russia. This is true pretty much throughout the old Communist countries. But Putin can handle being made a villain. He has an entire military and media apparatus to help him at home.

It's the Russians that are trying to make a living, grow a business, travel and live abroad, who are all somehow guilty by association.

Wait, you're a Russian? That's bad. You must have something up your sleeve.

 

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Most Russians do not blame Putin for the West's borderline hysterical disdain for their country. (Kirill Kudryavtsev/Pool photo via AP)

 

Podozritelny

To most in the Russia-is-evil camp, it cannot be spoken that American companies and investment banks do business in Russia and with Russians every day.

J.P. Morgan, Citigroup Global Markets and Bank of America Merill Lynch all tag-teamed with VTB Capital as book runners to the $1.5 billion Nov. 3 initial public offering of En+ Group on the London Stock Exchange.  Even worse, the company is controlled by FORBES listed Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska. The New York Times can hardly write about En+ Group without mentioning in the headline that Oleg once did business with the newly indicted Trump campaign advisor Paul Mannafort. That instantly makes him part of the Russian narrative that made Hillary Clinton the unfortunate, two-time loser in her quest for power.

Oh, and double-worse; he is a "Putin ally."

Over the weekend, the Paradise Papers were released. Russians were center-stage. Wilbur Ross, Trump's Commerce Secretary, had private equity investments in a Russian company he did not disclose. Yuri Milner, a well-known name in the Valley and founder of venture firm DST Capital, woke up to discover he was part of the problem. That's because he invested in Facebook and Twitter. He got money from VTB Capital and Gazprom's investment division, which found its way into those two social media giants stocks. Russian firms paid to advertise on both, including political propaganda that was more pro-Trump than pro-Hillary.

The fact that two Russian government-controlled banks used DST Capital as a way to invest in the shares of two American companies caught up in the Russia probe gave Milner instant villain status. Despite the fact that he sold Facebook and Twitter in 2013 and 2014, respectively, he was called out for aiding and abetting Russian intrusion into American democracy.

"The idea that we were working on Russia's behalf to turn social media against U.S. democracy is a fairy tale," Milner wrote in a Recode magazine op-ed in an answer to a handful of heat-seeking missile articles fired in The New York Times and in the Financial Times.

But that doesn't matter. He is a Russian. And a rich one. He must be working for Russian intelligence.

Milner moved to the U.S. in 1990 to attend Wharton Business School.  He was one of four graduation speakers at the school this year. In his op-ed in Recode, he says that when he later moved to Silicon Valley, it didn't matter where he was from.  Now there has been a change in the air. Since Trump beat Hillary, just to be Russian is suspect.

Russians feel the same everywhere.

"I was born here in Russia. I cannot go back in time and tell my mother -- mom, let’s have me in the U.S.," says Igor Matsanyuk, a Russian venture capitalist, and a gamer. He is president of Astrum Online Entertainment. He now lives in Lithuania.

He tells me a story about how he recently went fishing with some Lithuanians, all of them old enough to remember life under the rule of a foreign power known as the U.S.S.R. He recalls them asking him, why are you Russians so hated? He laughs to himself as he recalls this to me.

"I never really thought about it. But when I turn on the TV, everyone hates the Russians," he says. "I don’t know if any of these stories about Trump and Putin are true. I don’t know what is going on. What I do know is that it is not cool to be made to feel like you're the bad guy all the time. It's relentless."

Matsanyuk says that when doing business in London now, for example, they do extra "know your client" work on him, just in case.

The Russians were promised after the fall of the Soviet Union that they were welcomed into the fold of Western capitalist modernity. Let bygones be bygones. Communism had imploded, spasibo Gorbi! The West had won the economic culture war. The Russians learned English. They learned about derivatives trading. They bought Ferraris.

Now, Russia is being shut out. The story is that Putin wants to rebuild the Soviet system and take over Lithuania and the Baltics. He's already dividing up Ukraine. And as a result of this, Russians are the collateral damage of a narrative run amock.

When everyone is suspect, you trust no one.

European pension funds are not investing in Russia. Russian funds that grew on foreign money are now stagnant; there's no new money coming in. Venture capital, the foreign kind, has basically left.

I asked 30-something-year-old Yana Starovoytova how often she has seen negative headlines about Russia in the foreign press. Daily, she tells me. Starovoytova works for a Moscow-based hedge fund.

"None of my friends are surprised by this anymore," she tells me. We are at Bamboo Bar in Moscow's financial district. An early dinner. It soon gets mobbed. The city is very much alive and kicking. Some people are even speaking American English. What the hell are they doing here? Isn't this a political faux pas?

 

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I asked her if she blames Putin for all the controversy surrounding her country. She does not. Her explanation for what is behind all of this is not much different from Matsanyuk's. "We are a 'convenient' enemy, historically. China has all the imperfections that we have, but it is not demonized as much as Russia. There is no campaign against it in the western media," she says.

She should live here. China is a job killer for many in Washington.  Until Russia became a really really bad country, China was Washington's favorite punching bag every election year, though for different reasons.

She elaborates.  "I know it's because of Ukraine and Syria. Russia has openly refused to play by the rules imposed by the U.S. on the rest of the world. What if it becomes a trend and other countries decide to follow? This is a completely new situation for the West, and certainly is not something they want to put up with," she says.

A year ago, at the Leo Tolstoy estate, I attended a private birthday party of this Russian romantics singer whose name I will never remember. I was the only American in the tiny room of maybe 50 people. Friends of the singer came to me, asked me how I liked it. There was small talk. One made a point to tell me that Russians were not bad people. Including the ones who like Putin.

 

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Russians were hopeful Trump would have embraced Russia in its war on terrorism, at least. Now they believe Trump adds fuel to the fire. If Hillary Clinton had won, Russia would be disdained for Ukraine and roadblocking regime change in Syria. Trump adds one more bone to pick with the old Cold War rival. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Last month, at Jaime's Italian restaurant across from the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow, I met with three expats, including an American. In the mix was a high tech Russian talking blockchain, and a fund manager from VEB, the development bank of Russia.

I asked the expats what their friends say about them being in Russia. Unanimously: they think we are crazy.

The conversation was off the record.

Igor Podzigun used to work for the government in the Russian city of Kaluga. He was assistant to the mayor and left the public sector for the private sector. He is now part of Russia's growing tech market, helping to build a digital company called Apla. "When I look at myself and picture me in the world as a Russian today I feel like that Sting song, an Englishman in New York -- I don't belong and feel excluded," he tells me. "I feel like I'm the bad guy, which limits who I can do business with," he says. Apla is currently working on a small start-up project with one of the Emirates in the U.A.E.

"I think it's a tragedy," he says. "There are a lot of people in Russia who want to travel and want to be global entrepreneurs. Politics is making it very difficult."

It's not getting easier.

Maryland Congressman Benjamin Cardin reiterated this week that he wants the Democratic Party to lead an independent committee to investigate Russian election meddling not only here, but worldwide. The move further solidifies the fact that Washington deems Moscow as nefarious as it was in the days of the Soviet Union.

Cardin was part of a handful of congressional leaders that helped former Russia hedge fund manager Bill Browder lobby for the passing of the Magnitsky Act. The Act was signed in 2012 and targets individuals deemed responsible for the death of Sergei Magnitsky, Browder's former accountant at his Hermitage Capital investment firm. Browder is now taking his Magnitsky Act on a road show and managed to pass it in Canada in mid-October.

There is a tiny cadre of people, of which Cardin and Browder and expat and ex-billionaire Mikhail Khodorkovsky are a part, who have made it their life's work to seek revenge against Putin for deeply personal reasons. They are dragging an entire nation through the mud.

 

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Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, center, and his wife Yulia, left, take part in a march in memory of opposition leader Boris Nemtsov in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017. Thousands of Russians take to the streets of downtown Moscow to mark two years since Nemtsov was gunned down outside the Kremlin. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)

 

For women like Starovoytova, even if opposition politician Alexie Navalny was president, Washington would have a gripe unless Moscow acted as a "vassal" state. 

To many Western observers who have never been to Russia, much of these comments may seem like a bunch of locals falling for state propaganda. How is that different from those that have fallen for the opposing side of that story here at home? To hear it, a few thousand Obama voters in blue states in the north went rogue because they didn't like what they discovered in those DNC and John Podesta emails. Podesta was Hillary's campaign manager.  That's Russia's fault. Now we got Trump. Scream to the heavens.

No matter who got into those emails, the contents of them were never disputed. Where are the interviews with these dumb, duped voters? Where are the blue staters who are admitting: yes, Anderson, it was that Russian-backed Facebook ad with Jesus arm wrestling Satan that really did it for me.

Perhaps the Russians can say the same about our own storyline on them.

"I feel more like a patriot these days," says Maria Vavilova. I ask her what she thinks about Russian involvement in Brexit and in electing Trump and in fomenting unrest in Spain and backing anti-EU French politician Marine Le Pen. She sighs as I run it down for her, wrapped in a white parka, sipping jasmine tea at the lobby bar of the Hotel Ukraine.  She doesn't know what to say. She doesn't have the answers. None of us do. She sits back, frustrated. "Why are people talking like this about my country? I am proud to be Russian," she tells me. And repeats it, three times in a row.

 

https://www.forbes.c...g/#24fa146c71f7

 


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#2 Nemesis

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Posted 13 November 2017 - 09:06 AM

ameriKKKan media make too much noise.  They should be ignored like the garbage they are.


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#3 RobertD

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Posted 13 November 2017 - 12:27 PM

ameriKKKan media make too much noise.  They should be ignored like the garbage they are.


They should be permanently silenced.
And this opinion is shared by the 70% who have to endure their spitting in our faces daily with their lies and insults.
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#4 RobertD

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Posted 13 November 2017 - 12:28 PM

All jewish owned media is a pile of shit.
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#5 Christo Alado too

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Posted 14 November 2017 - 08:40 PM

I know for fact that the Russians did it... but it's not, however, that, which they did. What Russia has done is most commendable.

 

There's an old British saying "pulling oneself up by their bootstraps" meaning that they (the Russians in this instance) worked hard to set things right and do what is best.

It's a lifting of oneself (taking responsibility) and moving forward... in spite of it all. 

 

(thank you Russia for being genuinely caring)

 

Yep, no ONE is perfect... and everyone needs to take note of that FACT!

 

Peace be upon you for you have endured the clutches of dark masters and came through it all 'no worse for wears', and in a better position.


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#6 Hellboy

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Posted 14 November 2017 - 08:58 PM

What are the sanctions on Russia anyway?

 

anyone know?

 

Can Germany sell them anything they want?

 

Does Russia still send oil to Europe through Ukraine?

 

I'm ignorant. Thanks to "you know who" and their media.


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#7 R.W. Emerson II

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 01:35 AM

Andre Vltchek, "The Empire is Crumbling, That is Why it Needs War // 2015 Will See Decisive Battles", Counterpunch, 26-28 Dec 2014:

But lately, to be Russian, to me and to many others, is much more than just about blood. ‘I am a rebel; therefore I am Russian’, to paraphrase Albert Camus. Or: ‘I am Russian because I refuse to abandon the struggle.’

‘Ya Russkii!’ or ‘Cubano soy!’ It simply feels good, and makes one proud, and stronger.

The world is in turmoil. Like in the early 1940’s, something tremendous is gaining shape, something irreversible

Almost all of us who have been analyzing the Empire fighting against the propaganda and nihilism it spreads, and its venomous tentacles extending to every corner of the globe, know that ‘appeasing’ Western imperialism is clearly impossible, as it is impractical, and even immoral.


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#8 R.W. Emerson II

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 01:59 AM

The civilization that gave us the Renaissance and the Enlightenment and the Great Cathedrals of Europe has been destroyed by its trillion-dollars-a-year addiction to war.  The war-addict fares no better than the heroin addict: Live by the sword, die in the gutter.  The West was, at one time, a great civilization.  Now, it is little more than a system of death and destruction, a giant killing machine -- as cold-blooded, inhuman and useless as an earthquake or a tsunami.  

Many of the people of this former civilization have been driven mad by the war addiction and the paranoia it engenders.  A few years ago, they hallucinated "Iraqi WMDs"; now they hallucinate "Russian Trolls".

It is good that this death cult has failed to digest and assimilate Russia.  It is good that Russians have been spat out -- good for Russia and good for humanity.  Russia has an opportunity to become an oasis of sanity and intelligence in a world gone mad.  That's not a bad thing.

The West's suicidal war against Russia has been going on for over a hundred years.  Russians thought, perhaps, that it would end after 1945.  When it didn't happen, Russians blamed themselves: "Communism" was the problem, you see!   So they abandoned "communism", and now the West despises them even more.  It turns out that the Bolsheviks, whatever their failings, were right all along: Capitalism really is a cancer, and it really is necessary to resist this cancer with all our might!

Miguel de Unamuno (1864-1936, great Spanish philosopher, poet, and patriot):

That which the fascists hate above all else is intelligence.

 
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#9 Mario Milano

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 02:21 AM

I don't get why Russians would be exhausted from the retarded "Russia did it" nonsense...anyone can see it is just bullshit and the clowns that keep screaming Russia did it are looking more and more unhinged everyday that are trying to start wars just for the sake of it to please their bosses, the Satanic Rothschild family....like this stupid bitch for example......

____

 

Theresa's May's Brain-Dead, Moronic Anti-Russian Rant

 

Theresa May’s Anti-Russia Rant

By Stephen Lendman
stephenlendman.org
11-14-17

Addressing a Monday lord mayor’s banquet, May shamefully bashed Russia viciously, falsely accusing the Kremlin of “weaponiz(ing) information,” saying it’s “threatening the international order on which we all depend.”

 

She provided no evidence backing her claims because there is none, adding:

 

“I have a very simple message for Russia. We know what you are doing. And you will not succeed.”

 

“Because you underestimate the resilience of our democracies (sic), the enduring attraction of free and open societies, and the commitment of western nations to the alliances that bind us.”

 

“The UK will do what is necessary to protect ourselves, and work with our allies to do likewise.”

 

What’s going on? Britain partners with Washington’s imperial agenda. It’s allied with its wars of aggression and anti-Russia propaganda.

 

May is in trouble politically, her tenure as prime minister faltering. Reportedly, 40 Tory MPs prepared a letter of no confidence in her leadership, calling for her to step down - eight short of the number needed to trigger a contest to replace her.

 

Last summer, 15 party MPs opposed her, the number nearly threefold now, perhaps reaching or exceeding the 48-number threshold by yearend or early next year.

 

When in trouble, change the subject. Focus attention elsewhere, apparently May’s strategy, a likely futile one given growing Tory and public opposition against her leadership.

 

She’s a notorious Russophobe, earlier falsely accusing the Kremlin of “aggression” in Ukraine, along with threatening the Baltic states and Poland, calling for NATO to challenge the (nonexistent) threat.

 

Anti-Russia sentiment in America is longstanding, notably during most of the Cold War, especially since Putin’s election as president - because he opposes US-led Western imperialism and aggressive wars.

 

May’s assault on Moscow reflects a desperate attempt to retain power, besides acting as Washington’s surrogate, partnering in its anti-Russia campaign, venomous disinformation allegations, a huge danger to world peace and stability.

 

Urging Western countries to unite against Russia escalates tensions more than already.

 

Saying “we will take the necessary actions to counter Russian activity” comes ominously close to a call to arms - recklessness often preceding conflicts.

 

http://www.rense.com...heresamays.html


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#10 Mario Milano

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 02:24 AM

Dunno what it is, but to be a blackmailed Jew puppet is the first requirement to be dog shit ugly?

 

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#11 Mario Milano

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 03:11 AM

Dunno what it is, but to be a blackmailed Jew puppet is the first requirement to be dog shit ugly?

 

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And in contrast to the ugly piece of shit in the UK we have this coming from Russia.....which is intelligent compared to the crap the dog above spouts

__

 

Zakharova: UK Prime Minister's attempts to portray Russia as the main threat to the global community are "irresponsible and groundless"

 

TASS
Wed, 15 Nov 2017 01:19 UTC

 

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The Russian Foreign Ministry’s official spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova

 

UK Prime Minister Theresa May's attempts to portray Russia as the main threat to the global community are "irresponsible and groundless," the Russian Foreign Ministry's official spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova, said on Tuesday.

 

"We have taken note of the statement concerning Russia made on 13 November by the British Prime Minister Theresa May at the Lord Mayor's Banquet 2017. This time our country is ranked first among "threats to the international community", not just equal to others as before. Thus, the United Kingdom is making an attempt to claim global leadership in deterrence of Russia, in order to protect the existing world order, as PM Theresa May put it," Zakharova said in a statement published on the Russian Foreign Ministry's official website.

 

"The assertions are not brand new, but the main common point behind them is the irresponsible and groundless nature of accusations against Russia," the statement reads.

 

According to Zakharova, "the idea of protection of world order sounds particularly cynical from the British Prime Minister."

 

"It is enough to recall the aggressive actions of the United Kingdom in Iraq and Libya which have led not to strengthening of the international law, but to numerous casualties and sufferings of millions of people and destabilization of whole regions. At the same time London shows fundamental incomprehension of current processes in the world and of the essence of the very UN Charter-based international legal order that the United Kingdom is vowing to protect," she said.

 

According to the ministry's official spokeswoman, the United Kingdom chose Russia as an external enemy, needed to distract public attention from the complicated situation caused by the country's ongoing process of exiting the EU and internal rifts.

 

"It is deeply regrettable, especially now that the United Kingdom, considering its ambition to turn into a "Global Britain", would benefit from multi-directional, pragmatic and efficient foreign policy. Such an approach would give UK extra opportunities on the emerging markets as well as strengthen its global standing through the development of dialogue with other countries. The path of confrontation chosen by London is unlikely to contribute to the achievement of these goals," Zakharova's statement reads.

 

https://www.sott.net...-and-groundless


Edited by Mario Milano, 15 November 2017 - 03:12 AM.

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#12 Mario Milano

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 04:08 AM

"Russia did it" (and Russians are worried about this lunacy?)

 

%2521%2BSEX%2BCRIMES%2BTAK%25282%2529.GI


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#13 R.W. Emerson II

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Posted 15 November 2017 - 05:18 AM

I don't get why Russians would be exhausted from the retarded "Russia did it" nonsense...anyone can see it is just bullshit and the clowns that keep screaming Russia did it are looking more and more unhinged everyday that are trying to start wars just for the sake of it to please their bosses, the Satanic Rothschild family....like this stupid bitch for example......
____
 
Theresa's May's Brain-Dead, Moronic Anti-Russian Rant
 
Theresa May’s Anti-Russia Rant
By Stephen Lendman
stephenlendman.org
11-14-17

Addressing a Monday lord mayor’s banquet, May shamefully bashed Russia viciously, falsely accusing the Kremlin of “weaponiz(ing) information,” saying it’s “threatening the international order on which we all depend.”
 

http://www.rense.com...heresamays.html

 
The important implication here is that information can be "weaponized". This is a tacit admission that the the false narrative foisted on us by the Rothschild gang isn't working. The enchantment is wearing off. People are waking up from the "American Dream", and are beginning to take an interest in the real world. Chinks are opening up in the West's Iron Information Curtain. The dam is breaking. Light is getting into our cave!

Dams do not collapse spontaneously. They collapse because the pressure of the water behind the dam is too great. Piling up air or feathers does not break the dam: One needs something with substance. To break the information dam in the West, one needs something more substantial than disinformation. One needs "bombshell" revelations. One needs truth, lots of truth, built up over decades under pressure..

So May is telling us what we already know -- that Russia has truth on its side, truth so powerful that it acts as a weapon.


Edited by R.W. Emerson II, 15 November 2017 - 05:23 AM.

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