Travel notes for Abu Dhabi/Oman/Qatar/Tanzania

I still have not recovered, but if I don’t do this post soon I’ll have forgotten the whole trip:

Abu Dhabi: In a previous post, I said you should wait a couple years before going to Abu Dhabi. At the moment, I saw three notable places, the grand mosque, the palace, and the Louvre museum branch.

For most people, the mosque and palace are the most impressive sights—really stunning works of architecture. The more aesthetically-minded viewer might feel these two buildings are a bit excessive. I find it hard to evaluate huge modern examples of classical architecture, as without the patina of age they seem a bit artificial.

The mosque is roughly in the style of the Taj Mahal, but lacks its perfect proportions. Even so, it’s light years better than anything Vegas would do. The palace is slightly more subdued, but perhaps not as graceful.

The mosque is worth visiting twice, once in the daytime when the white marble gleams in the sun, and once at night when it has a blueish tint:

The Jean Nouvel designed Louvre is very different. I found it to be a highly successful example of modern architecture, which perfectly fits the Middle Eastern climate. It’s hard to get a good picture, as it looks best from the inside out:

Like the (much bigger) Paris Louvre, the collection covers a wide ranges of genres and time periods. It’s a pretty good museum.

Not much more to say. Abu Dhabi isn’t super interesting, but it’s pleasant and has good food at reasonable prices. Great airport.

Oman: I knew relatively little about Oman, and was initially disappointed by the two hour wait at immigration. We spent two nights near Muscat, two in the desert, and two in the mountains. I say “near” Muscat, as Oman’s capital is a weirdly spread out place, due to the rugged mountains along the coast. Don’t make our mistake—get a hotel near the old town.

Oman is a slightly confusing place. Is it a middle income or high income country? The IMF has its (PPP) per capita GDP at just below $40,000, right next to Greece. But it actually feels like a developing country that’s pushed up to developed status by oil wealth.

The oil wealth seems to have been invested pretty wisely. The roads weren’t just good, they were outstanding. Most of the houses (outside old Muscat) that I could see looked reasonably large and modern. The styles ranged from simple white boxes to gaudy excess to art deco to cool modernism.

We drove south down the coast and hiked a pleasant “wadi”, which is an oasis-like stream in a mountain canyon. Lots of French tourists. We turned inland at Sur and experienced the only sketchy road, but we could see a new expressway under construction. Then we hit a brand new 6-lane expressway in the desert, and were almost the only car on the road—even in the middle of the day. The gas station was so new they hadn’t even opened the little mini-market or toilet on the site. I felt sorry for the two young men working in this god-forsaken place, who probably came from somewhere like Bangladesh.

The last 11 kilometers were across the desert to the desert camp, and at first we had trouble finding the “road”, which was just tire tracks in the sand. So I was sort of randomly driving in the general direction of the hotel (thank god for GPS.) Eventually we saw a car coming the other way and found the track. Despite the generally excellent roads in Oman, you’ll need 4 wheel drive in a few places. At the desert hotel, there are jeeps that will take you to the top of the huge dunes to watch the sunset, if you are too lazy to hike up. Recommended.

It’s probably hard to see, but our hotel camp is on the lower right, and there is a delegation of Saudi government people visible on a dune above the camp. In real life, the colors are absurdly vivid:

The third hotel was high up in the mountains. The Anantara Hotel was not the best hotel on our trip (that came later) but it was by far the most expensive (even though we got a discounted rate.) There are spectacular views and you can hike along a string of little villages perched on the edge of the giant canyon, with terraced fields below them where they grow things like roses. These villages are gradually becoming gentrified.

Overall, we had a positive impression of Oman. It’s much easier for tourists like me to navigate Oman than a country in a place like Latin America. Good roads, not crowded, good facilities, low prices, friendly people, very little crime. On the other hand, in some ways I’d rather visit a more “authentic” place, say Morocco, Turkey or Iran. Oman is safe, but a tad boring. The oddest thing we noticed is absurdly oversized police stations in almost every town. One was in a compound almost half a mile long, with several grandiose buildings. Maybe that’s why they have so little crime; every third Omani seems to work for the police.

Qatar: Qatar is even richer than Abu Dhabi, and looks it–perhaps only because it’s newer. It makes Florida seem like a state steeped in history. It also has a wonderful new airport, but unlike Abu Dhabi it’s very overcrowded, and thus you must take buses to and from the planes. (They are building a new terminal.)

Although they have a very nice new subway from the airport to the center of Doha, it doesn’t make any sense to use it. Take an Uber. But I wanted to see the subway, so not only did we take it, we paid triple to take a luxury “Gold” subway car. No one else did, as I later discovered than the ordinary cars are almost as luxurious. New Yorkers would trash these seats within 5 minutes:

We stayed at the Mandarin Oriental, which was more luxurious than the Amantara, but found a discounted room at only $227/night. In a city like New York, the same hotel room is about $800/night. The first day I went to the spectacular Qatar National Museum, also designed by Jean Nouvel, but much less successful than his Abu Dhabi museum—the style is too “busy”. The collection is also mediocre. Imagine if a multi-generational business family spent a fortune on a museum of the family’s history, and filled it with knick knacks. OK, it’s not that bad, but let’s face it—Qatar is not a real nation. It built the museum to try to convince people that it has a rich history, but it doesn’t. It had 25,000 people back in 1950. There are Orange County suburbs with more than 10 times that number. Imagine a giant museum of the history of some place like Plano, Texas.

In other respects, Qatar is ahead of Abu Dhabi. The architecture mostly seemed better, and the Islamic Art Museum was spectacular—the best museum I saw on the entire trip. We had dinner at a fancy restaurant on the top floor of the museum. I generally find the Michelin star restaurants to be a bit pretentious and overpriced, and this was no exception. I preferred a meal we had in a Sri Lankan place in the fashionable Msheireb neighborhood near our hotel.

Tanzania: To say Tanzania was a change of pace would be an understatement. To begin with, it’s very poor (per capita GDP of $1327, or $3595 PPP) , even compared to nearby Kenya ($2188, and $6577 PPP). It was also quite green, although it was not the rainy season. It has 62 million people, but based on the green and fertile land I saw out the window, it could support a vastly larger population.

And soon it will! Most babies are now born in Africa and South Asia. That’s the future of the human race. Tanzania’s fertility rate is 4.7 per woman and falling, while Kenya is at 3.3 and falling. My driver had four children, while I have one. So who is more successful? It depends:

1. He’s having more success at the genetic level.

2. I’m having more financial success.

3. In utility terms it’s close, but he seems a bit happier.

We spent 8 days in Tanzania. The first night at Lake Manyara National park. Then a very long and bumpy drive to the Serengeti, where we spent 3 nights. Then back to Ngorongoro crater where we spent 2 nights. All three times we stayed at Serena hotels. We ended up staying 2 nights at a tent camp in Tarangire National Park.

If I could do it all over, I’d cut out Manyara, and start with Tarangire. I’d also stay closer to the entrance to Tarangire, as it was an uncomfortable 1.5 hour drive from the entrance to our camp, and most of the animals that we saw the next day were close to the entrance (at this time of year.) BTW, I think this is an excellent time of year to visit.

I have mixed feelings about the trip. Due to bad water, I suffered a lot of discomfort during the last couple days, on the long trip home, and even after getting home. But I also had some of the best travel days of my life, especially in the Serengeti and Ngorongoro areas. Most people go to see the animals and to a lesser extent tribal groups like the Maasai. I’m unusual–much more interested in landscapes than in animals and people (although I did enjoy seeing the animals and meeting the Maasai.)

There were times when the spectacular landscapes made me feel much younger. At the risk of sounding like Burt Lancaster in Local Hero, even the sky was amazing.

But most people come for the animal life, which gets quite close to the jeep:

We used Fortis safari company. The driver named Robert was very knowledgeable and quite personable. At the hotels, you get escorted to your room after dinner (generally a separate bungalow or tent), as the hotel doesn’t wish to have their customers eaten by lions.

The long trip home reminded me of the film Three Times, directed by Hou Hsiao-hsien. That film presents the same love story three times, using the same actors. The first episode occurs during the 1960s, and is obviously close to the director’s heart. The second is a silent film, taking place around 1910. Life is too repressive. In the final segment you are in a neon-lit future, where people are free but rather apathetic and alienated.

On the first of three consecutive nights, I stayed in a tent in a remote area of Tarangire park—not free to walk outside at night. The next night we were in massive Doha airport, which is a highly artificial environment packed with people from all over the world. Even at 1am the place was very crowded. We stayed right in the terminal in a tiny 5-foot by 6-foot room with a bunk bed, which had no windows—kind of like those futuristic Japanese capsule hotels. It cost almost as much as our luxurious Mandarin Oriental room. The third night we stayed at our spacious and pleasant home in Mission Viejo, which overlooks a lake and some mountains. In some odd way, I felt the primitive tent and the futuristic airport pod bookended our familiar house in OC in much the same way that the final two segments of Three Times bookended Hou Hsiao-hsien’s nostalgic memories of the 1960s.

PS. Even though I had already gone through security, there was another security checkpoint right at our gate for the 16 hour flight from Doha to LA. I was outraged that I couldn’t take a bottle of water with me, which I like to have on long flights. The agent told me to blame the TSA. Even on the other side of the world, the US government is screwing up my life.

Other passengers must laugh as they walk by gates where flights to America are boarding: “Those Americans are so risk averse that the security measures used in all other countries aren’t good enough for them.” It’s bad enough that the TSA imposes the excessive security theatre on American airports, now they demand that foreign airports serving America follow suit. So Doha must set up special gates for neurotic Americans. Pathetic.

Please abolish the TSA and let each American airport contract out security to the firm of its choosing. Let foreign airports set their own standards. Stop the madness.

PPS. In fairness, my Global Entry card worked well, so the US can do a few things right.



18 Responses to “Travel notes for Abu Dhabi/Oman/Qatar/Tanzania”

  1. Gravatar of Sara Sara
    15. February 2024 at 17:19

    These types of comments scream ‘nouveau riche’.

    When I was going to Yale in the 2000’s, my father did not attend graduation in his Ferrari. He did not pay for first class seating. He drove his oldsmobile, and stood in the crowd with everyone else.

    When our family went on vacations, we didn’t publicly share our globe trotting photos. When I attended class in the fall, my parents always told me that when other students ask what I did during the summer, that I should simply say… ‘nothing much’ or ‘nothing that interesting.’

    It’s called… ‘having class.’

    Try it sometime.

    You won’t win any friends if you walk around telling people you are ‘elite’ and ‘winning’, and ‘buying gold seats.’

    I’d suggest spending more time with the locals. Because it’s awfully difficult to ‘see the world’ when you spend your days traveling between five star-hotels, and when you only visit tourist destinations.

    Get off the beaten path every once a while. You’ll learn something.

    Agree on TSA. And that overreach extends to the IRS, which forces foreign banks to file paperwork on American holdings. This makes it harder for expatriots and American businessmen to open accounts abroad.

  2. Gravatar of Michael Sandifer Michael Sandifer
    15. February 2024 at 17:34

    I’m glad you had what seems to have been a very interesting trip. I’d like to visit those places also, but want to try more of east Asia and Latin America first.

    I visited the Philippines last year and saw first hand that you’ve long had a point when it comes to happiness. Despite the Philippines being one of the poorest countries in east Asia, by far, people there seem genuinely much happier than Americans. Not only was I graciously welcomed by 2 employees I just passed by at the airport in Cebu City just after landing, but I also passed by 3 others who were singing as they were working, smiling the whole time. I was only in the airport for several minutes. Then, my cab driver sang to old songs from the radio the entire way from the airport to my hotel. The next morning, I was awakened by the sound of singing, which I couldn’t locate until I looked out the window and down at the high rise window washers. It was too men singing as they worked.

    I’ve never met happier, kinder, more generous people in my life. I was simultaneously shocked by the extreme poverty and dysfunctional business culture, and what in many ways is the extraordinarily healthy social culture. It just highlighted how toxic American social and political culture has become.

    I want to underline that people there generally don’t care much about the political or religious beliefs of others. It was quite refreshing.

    I had a layover that stretched out overnight due to flight delays at JFK airport on my way home. It was 53 degrees outside, but the heat was not on in the airport. This was late September, and I’m from Florida, so had to buy a hoodie. There wasn’t enough seating, so many were sitting or even sleeping on the floor. I witnessed a fist fight just feet away over a disputed seat, and a near fist fight across the lobby that was broken up by security as two men were yelling and cursing at each other, while pushing and shoving.

    What a contrast!

  3. Gravatar of Philo Philo
    15. February 2024 at 19:28

    “Please abolish the TSA . . . .” My spirit is willing, but my political influence is weak.

  4. Gravatar of David S David S
    16. February 2024 at 04:37

    That terraced hillside in Oman was amazing. Nice photos in general, although I’m a bit perplexed by the luxury subway car–it screams white elephant infrastructure project. I’m just being bitter—riding the MBTA has made me grumpy.

  5. Gravatar of Ricardo Ricardo
    16. February 2024 at 05:15

    I fail to see how 34T in government debt equates to wealth. Loans and credit cards are liabilities. Everyone is abandoning the dollar. Countries worldwide are buying gold as fast as they can. America is not winning at anything. It’s broke. 70% of Americans have less than $1000 in their bank accounts. Your infastructure is third world. A crappy $1 t-shirt costs $50 in America because you consolidated all your clothing stores into the hands of a few companies who rip you off. Your citizens don’t even know how to make clothes anymore.
    Every industry is dominated by two or three firms. Nobody can start a business because your politicians demand $50 minimum wages and enact the most outlandish regulation. Your farmers cannot even sell their product directly to the consumer. How tyrannical is that.

    Commercial in NYC is now at 45% occupancy. Just wait until those developers refinance; banks will crash, and you’ll see the biggest contraction since 1929.

  6. Gravatar of Student Student
    16. February 2024 at 06:52

    Is Sara a Karen or what lol.

    Awesome pics. Did you camp in a tent in the desert? Was it backpacking or was it a stay in one place camp?

  7. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    16. February 2024 at 07:15

    Sara, I splurged $9 on that subway ride just to drive you nuts. It was worth it. We also stayed at lots of mid-priced hotels like Holiday Inn.

    Michael, It’s funny how little we know about the people around us. For instance, no one seems to know what caused the obesity epidemic. We don’t know why Americans think the economy sucks. Happiness is one of those mysteries. We don’t know if Filipinos or Tanzanians are happier than Americans.

    David, That subway car is just one car in an otherwise perfectly normal subway. I wrote it merely because I thought the idea was kind of funny.

    Ricardo, Take a chill pill.

    Students, More like “glamping”.

  8. Gravatar of Rajat Rajat
    16. February 2024 at 14:40

    Great pics, Scott. You’re a lot more adventurous than me, which probably isn’t saying much. After going to a few places slightly off the beaten path in my mid-20s, I’ve since pretty-much ruled out Africa, the Middle East, Mexico, China and Central Asia. The idea of spending hours on bumpy bus or car rides to get to a polluted or decrepit site is a major turn-off. When going to Europe, I’ve decided against taking Emirates, as I found the long queues and bus transfers at Dubai airport to be the last thing I needed after a 14 hour flight. Changi and the south-east Asian airports are much easier to deal with.
    Nevertheless, whenever I go to India to see my extended family, I get exposed to many people like your driver, Robert (same driver?). People have such different ways of life and values. Sometimes I wonder how I would have turned out if my parents had not migrated to Australia.
    Anyway, even assuming you don’t want to become a boring old fart like me, I have one comment and one unsolicited suggestion. The comment is that I don’t think the inability to take a water bottle on a plane is (solely) due to the TSA. On flights out of Delhi, India, they do the same thing – no liquids more than 100 ml through security – regardless of where you’re travelling. If you’re lucky, there is a sole water fountain at the gate after the second and final security check, where you can refill an empty bottle. This leads me to my unsolicited suggestion: the fact you care about water bottles tells me that you are travelling cattle class. Am I wrong? If not, why do that to yourself? You’re mid-way between 6 foot and 7, retired, and seem financially comfortable enough. Yes, it feels like a waste of money, but my wife and I tell ourselves that flying Business makes the journey feel like part of the holiday, rather than an ordeal. Of course, coming from Australia, going anywhere interesting in Economy is more of an ordeal than from the US, Europe or Asia. I have this same conversation with my dad – you’ve got one foot in the grave, spend some money on making your life easier! /lecture over!

  9. Gravatar of Scott Sumner Scott Sumner
    16. February 2024 at 18:50

    Rajat, You obviously didn’t read Sara’s comment—she says I’m bragging about how rich I am.

    Seriously, you may be right about business class, but it’s just hard for me to justify spending thousands for somewhat more comfy seats. If we instead spent the extra $10000 (cost of 2 business class tickets) on hotel upgrades, it would probably yield more utility than business class. I do spend an extra $100 or $200 for emergency exit row seats, so at least I have legroom.

    Because I grew up in Wisconsin, which is a bit like Australia, I’m uncomfortable with luxury. Having people fuss over me at a luxury hotel makes me uneasy. I’d rather be left alone.

    As far as water, no airport allows it through security. What makes the TSA so evil is that they require another security right at the gate for flights to America, even after you’ve gone through the main airport security. Presumably that’s because of something stupid, like the airport not requiring laptops to be taken out. Usually, I fill up the bottle after security.

  10. Gravatar of Rajat Rajat
    16. February 2024 at 21:10

    I had thought about responding to Sara’s comment, but when it began “When I was going to Yale…”, I immediately assumed it was satire – especially when followed by, “It’s called… ‘having class.'” Brilliant!

    I used to baulk at Business Class on the basis of the ‘more utility’ hypothesis, but then we never ended up staying at the flashier hotels or going to the Michelin Star restaurants. I think partly because, like you, we don’t like the pretentiousness. I would feel I needed to bring a fancy wardrobe just to leave my room. Whereas Business Class just feels like travelling in a vaguely civilised manner. Sometimes I tell myself that the real price of a Business Class airfare now is probably less than double the real price of an Economy fare in the mid-1980s. Having crossed that Rubicon, I now feel more comfortable about spending money on airfares – a once-per-year at most exercise for us – than pursuing the temptation of drinking better wine, which I fear could ruin me for my normal mid-range stuff. The way Janan Ganesh talks about his love of fine Burgundies (which cost $A500 and up per bottle here) scares the hell out of me.

  11. Gravatar of Tacticus Tacticus
    17. February 2024 at 11:17

    I’ve paid for full tasting menus at 3 star restaurants with accompanying wine flights that were less expensive than the difference between Economy and Business flying from London to the US. In my mind, Business class is way more of a luxury than dining well. And I remember my fine meals better than my flights.

    If Sara’s comment was written by anyone besides ‘her’, I’d have thought it was satire. It’s like Donald Trump talking about how he’s classy because he wear’s a tie… Or, really, anyone talking about how they’re classy. If one has to note it…

    Interesting post, Scott. Oman sounds worth adding to the list. Hope you got over the bad water without too much trouble!

  12. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    17. February 2024 at 20:45

    Yes, she seems so unaware of how she sounds I sometimes wonder if she is some sort of AI.

    Rajat, Throughout my career, I never made more than about $160,000 on my teaching gig. So while I’m quite comfortable, I still can’t just spend money like there’s no tomorrow.

    Tacticus, I agree, although I’d substitute something else for a three star restaurant. I prefer a high quality Asian restaurant where dinner for two is about $80 – $100. Elite food is wasted on me.

  13. Gravatar of anon/portly anon/portly
    18. February 2024 at 11:44

    “…with terraced fields below them where they grow things like roses.”

    I don’t imagine you investigated further, but were they growing roses for cut flowers? I would have guessed that would be fairly water-intensive. Maybe they’re grown for hips.

    “…even the sky was amazing.”

    That brings up something I had never thought of – is the sky “better” in certain places than in others? I always feel that people underrate the beauty we see in the sky because we see it every day. Of course a red sunset or sunrise captures attention.

    What makes for a great place to see the sky? Latitude? Weather patterns? Elevation?

    “When our family went on vacations, we didn’t publicly share our globe trotting photos.”

    “It’s called… ‘having class.’”

    “When I was going to Yale…”

    The probability of Sara being a satirical account just went up quite a bit. I wish it could be always this well executed, though.

    Whether fake or legit, though, the effort put into that comment was something of a waste of time, given her limitations in competing with Ricardo.

    “A crappy $1 t-shirt costs $50 in America because you consolidated all your clothing stores into the hands of a few companies who rip you off.”

    Complaining about the cost and quality of apparel in the US? This is not unlike someone would go to Russia to complain about US inflation or standards of living.

    For Ricardo’s information, the last time I bought T-shirts it was a 6-pack at Costco that was going for $8, I think it was some sort of closeout. Anyway, Ricardo is only off here by $48.67 per shirt, a factor of 37.5 and “crappy?” Kirkland Signature T-shirts are “crappy?”

    Maybe I shouldn’t say this, because I might get banned, but the next time Ricardo insults Kirkland Signature products in this comments section I’m going right over there, and we will sort things out the old-fashioned way.

  14. Gravatar of LC LC
    18. February 2024 at 15:03

    Thanks for the great travelogue. Sharing your trips and adventures really made my day.

  15. Gravatar of steve steve
    18. February 2024 at 15:55

    Wife and I are foodies so that would have interested us. Based on th year I spent in Saudi Arabia I was not super impressed with the food. Not really a fan of lamb dishes so that didnt help. Had some great salads, loved the schwarmas, some good kofta and chicken kebab like stuff. Beef dishes were disappointing. We also prefer Asian stuff though I am not convinced that the stuff in the nicer restaurants is really better than what we find in the strip malls and dives downtown.


  16. Gravatar of mbka mbka
    18. February 2024 at 20:01


    glad you liked Africa the same way as I like it… in visceral terms. I don’t generalize to “Africa” lightly, too many people ignore the enormous diversity of the continent. But some things seem to be African universals. And like me, you seem to have rhymed with the landscapes. There is something unique about most African landscapes and why people like them – I am thinking of the Savannah hypothesis. BTW I don’t think it is only the landscapes. You too (and certainly me) noticed a general happy attitude towards life there. To criminally overgeneralize it: “Westerners” tend to socially relate in a mix of competitiveness and expectations that constantly conflicts with emotions. (East)”Asians” tend to be so cooperative that life is an eternally stultifying social peace where emotions have been repressed to non-existence. “Africans”… actually act like humans. Sort of, like, the original Zen. Feel life as it comes.

    “Having people fuss over me at a luxury hotel makes me uneasy. I’d rather be left alone.” Cracks me up. My feelings exactly.

  17. Gravatar of Edward Edward
    19. February 2024 at 11:40

    I’m having a hard time caring about vacations, when France passed legislation that makes it a crime to criticize the vaccine or basically any other official government position on medicine.

    And these are the so-called ‘liberals’?

    Doesn’t it concern anyone that the so-called ‘liberals’ are the most intolerant, illiberal people in the western hemisphere? In France, so-called liberals advocate for silencing any scientist that criticizes the government. In the U.S. the so-called liberals support 15th century wokeness, including hate speech (just another name for censorship).

    In Ireland and Canada, anything deemeded hate speech is a crime or soon will be a crime.

    And then there is the orwellian double standard. While our freedoms are being trampled by reactionary gangsters, the uniparty is hysterical about Russian freedoms: namely, Navalny, as if somehow Russian domestic affairs is their concern. Shouldn’t they be more concerned about American freedoms?

    Navalny was an ethnonationalist, and a former member of the Soyuz slavyanskikh sil Rusi (SSSR). I guarantee that 99% of our congressmen don’t even know who he is or what he stood for, but because he was opposed to putin, like Zelensky, he’s suddenly their hero. I think it was the New York Times who first covered Navalny’s ethnonationalism, but that of course was before he became a darling of the anti-putin weirdos.

    It’s called pseudointellectualism. They cannot spell his name properly; they don’t know anything about his NGO’s in Russia, the legal case brought against him and his organizations, the evidence in the legal case, nor do they have any evidence the government was directly involved in his death. People die in jail all the time. An American journalist died in a Ukrainian prison because of health issues. Where was the outrage? Ukraine placed the journalist Tucker Carlson on their ‘hit-list’. Where is the international outrage for placing a journalist on a hit-list??
    The journalist Julian Assange spent five years in a UK prison, because he exposed government crimes. Where is the international outrage?

    Where are the so-called ‘liberals’?

    I’ll tell you, we’ve got some sick, twisted, sons of bitches in the west.

    Some real uneducated, reactionary nutjobs.

  18. Gravatar of Scott Sumner Scott Sumner
    19. February 2024 at 11:58

    anon/portly, When I first visited Europe I was surprised that the sky in each country looked like the sky in that country’s paintings. Thus compare Dutch and Spanish artists. Don’t know why this surprised me.

    Thanks LC.

    mbka, Very much my view of things.

    Edward, You said:

    “I’ll tell you, we’ve got some sick, twisted, sons of bitches in the west.
    Some real uneducated, reactionary nutjobs.”

    Isn’t that the truth! I’m astounded by how many Putin apologists I find on the internet.

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