Please watch the video above... We have never existed in such peril, and yet almost no-one is able to act.
VIDEO shows deaf child
react to Syrian first lady giving a life-changing hearing aid to him... January 22nd,, 2019, at 6:21pm
A deaf child being treated at a Damascus hospital was filmed reacting to an implant allowing him to hear for the first time. The child got the device from his donor, Syrian first lady Asma Assad, who’s been fighting breast cancer.
Asma, who is the wife of Syrian President Bashar Assad, was filmed paying a charity visit to the Damascus hospital, on Monday, where she met families whose children suffer from hearing impairments.
The video, uploaded by the Syrian presidency’s official Twitter account, shows Asma equipping a young boy with a hearing implant.
The child, who was born deaf, begins to laugh and offers thumbs up, as he hears human voices clearly, for the first time in his life, while Asma talks to him gently.
In all, ten children received the device, with the first lady’s support.
The footage has been widely shared on social networks, with many praising the first lady, for her charity work.
A post on Asma’s Instagram page has highlighted the rehab program for children who suffer from life-long hearing impairments.
The Syrian first lady herself has recently been in need of medical help, after she was diagnosed with breast cancer, in August 2018. This did not stop her from continuing her charity and humanitarian projects - helping Syria's people overcome the aftermath of the war that has been devastating the country, since 2011.
Despite the cancer treatments, Syria's First Lady, Asma Al Assad, has never stopped her community work in Syria.
The video shows the child Hussein Nasser's adorable reaction, when he was finally able to hear, after he was given his first hearing aid.
Asma Assad was born to Syrian parents in London, educated in the UK, and moved to Syria in November 2000 - shortly after meeting Bashar Assad, whom she married a month later.
The couple have three children. Asma is known to have refused multiple offers of asylum, choosing to stay in war-torn Syria.
(Source - RT)
An "accident" or what? You decide!
Pro-Russia President of Moldova's "accident" caught on cam...
Nuclear words: Putin's FINAL warning: (People DO need reminding -- unless US, UK and French policy changes, and stops being so 'exceptional' -- that is, outside the UN legal Charter and thus, criminal --- there will be a reaping.)
US, Europe & NATO risk all-out war: by backing unhinged Kiev regime by Finian Cunningham November 27th, at 4:25pm
With the US, EU and NATO all bolstering claims of “Russian aggression” – in the face of contrary evidence – the real danger, is that the Kiev regime will be emboldened to carry out more reckless provocations, leading to all-out war.
It seems indisputable that the three Ukrainian Navy vessels were dispatched last Sunday in order to instigate a security response from Russian maritime border forces. In contrast to normal procedures for passage clearance through the Kerch Strait, the Ukrainian warships refused to communicate with Russian controls, and acted menacingly inside Russia’s Black Sea territorial limits.
At a United Nations Security Council emergency meeting on Monday, the US, Britain and France pointedly refused to take on board Russia’s legal argument for why it felt obliged to detain the Ukrainian boats and 24 crew. The Western powers automatically sided with the version of events claimed by President Petro Poroshenko – that the Ukrainian Navy was attacked unlawfully by Russia.
The US, EU and NATO denounced Russia’s “aggression” and demanded that the Ukrainian vessels and crew be repatriated immediately, even though under Russian law, there is a case for prosecution.
It is the West’s refusal to acknowledge facts, that is part of the problem. Russia is continually accused of “annexing” Crimea, in 2014, instead of the Western powers recognizing that the Black Sea peninsula has voted, in a constitutionally held referendum, to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation.
Crimea was prompted to take that historic step, because the US, EU & NATO had, only the month before, backed an illegal coup in Kiev, against the elected Ukrainian government. That coup brought to power the present Kiev regime, led by Poroshenko, and a parliament dominated by neo-Nazi parties.
So, the problem here, is a refusal by Western supporters of the dubious Kiev regime, to accept the legal, historic reality, that Crimea is part of Russia’s territory. Ships passing through the Kerch Strait between Russia’s mainland and Crimea are obliged to notify Russian maritime controls of passage. Russia has since reopened the strait to civilian cargo transport following the naval skirmish at the weekend.
When the Ukrainian Navy vessels violated legal procedures and entered Russian territorial limits, their action was aggressive, not Russia’s response.
Furthermore, there are already emerging signs that the Ukrainian naval transport was orchestrated for the purpose of inciting an incident.
Some of the detained crew members have admitted carrying out orders, which, they knew, would be seen by Russia, as provocative.
It has also been reported by the US government-owned Radio Free Europe that the Ukrainian secret services (SBU) have confirmed that its officers were among the crew on the boats. The vessels were also armed. If the transfer was an innocent passage, why were secret services involved?
Recall that Ukrainian secret services have previously been caught staging sabotage operations in Crimea.
Another major background factor is the increasing NATO military buildup in eastern Ukraine, and in the Black Sea.
When Russian President Vladimir Putin officially opened the 19km bridge linking Russia’s mainland with Crimea in May, earlier this year, there were calls in US and Ukrainian media for the structure to be sabotaged.
Moscow has, understandably, stepped up security controls around the vital infrastructure, which cost $3.7 billion and is the longest bridge in Europe.
In recent months, the US and Britain have ordered increasing military deployment to the region under the guise of “training” and “assistance” to the Kiev regime forces.
Earlier this year, in July, the NATO alliance held naval drills, Sea Breeze, along with Ukrainian forces in the Black Sea. That’s in spite of the fact that Ukraine is not a member of NATO, although it is aspiring to join the 29-member US-led bloc, at some time in the future.
It was the following month, in August, that Russia began stepping up its controls and searches of vessels through the Kerch Strait linking the Black Sea to the Sea of Azov. The latter leads to ports under the control of the Kiev regime such as Mariupol --- which is adjacent to the breakaway Donetsk People’s Republic.
The DPR and Luhansk People’s Republic broke away following the coup in Kiev in 2014 and have been under military attack for the past four years, despite the so-called Minsk peace treaties.
These are more facts that the Western backers of the Kiev regime, refuse to deal with.
More NATO buildups continued in September with the supply of two gunboats, by the US, to the Ukrainian Navy for deployment in the Sea of Azov.
Pentagon-linked publication Defense One, described that supply as part of efforts by Washington and Kiev, to develop a “mosquito navy”, in order to skirmish with Russian forces.
Only four days before the latest naval clash, Britain’s Defense Minister Gavin Williamson announced the Royal Navy was to send HMS ‘Echo’ to patrol with Ukrainian special forces to “defend freedom and democracy.” Williamson said: “As long as Ukraine faces Russian hostilities, the United Kingdom will be a steadfast partner.”
This is the background to the simmering tensions in the Black Sea, between Ukraine and Russia. The situation has arisen because of Western interference in Ukraine – primarily the coup in Kiev in February 2014. Yet, in all discussions about events since then, the Western powers are in denial of facts & their culpability.
The recent militarization of the Black Sea by the NATO alliance, is a stark provocation to Russia’s national security, but again, the Western powers bury their collective heads in the sand.
Given the reckless indulgence by the US, Europe and NATO of the Kiev regime amid its ongoing violations against the populace in eastern Ukraine, its refusal to abide by the Minsk agreements, and its continual inflammatory and unhinged rhetoric against Russia, it should not be surprising if this same regime feels emboldened, to provoke an armed confrontation with Moscow.
Arguably, the Kiev regime and its adulation of World War II Nazi collaborators, never had any legitimacy in the first place. It continues to demonstrate its lack of legitimacy: from the immense social problems in Ukraine of poverty, corruption, human rights violations, neo-Nazi paramilitaries running amok... and now, martial law being imposed.
It remains to be seen if the recent naval provocation was carried out with the tacit approval of Washington and other NATO powers, as a pretext for a further militarization against Russia. The initial misplaced condemnations of Russia have subsided, to more measured calls from US President Donald Trump and French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, for “restraint” and “dialogue.”
That might suggest Kiev’s failing President Poroshenko and his security services, acted alone, to order the naval confrontation, as a desperate throw of the dice, to escalate NATO and EU support for his shaky regime, against Russia.
Trump’s comments hoping that Kiev and Russia would “straighten things out” sound like Washington is not behind the provocation and has no desire for a wider conflict. Just as well, because such a development is a gateway to all-out war.
Nevertheless, such a catastrophe is always a serious risk when Western powers indulge this unhinged Kiev regime.
(Source - RT)
War in Donbass is looming:
Western PMCs come to Ukraine to kill Ivans by Dmitry Sudakov September 4th, at 6:07pm
The press service of the People's Republic of Donetsk has reported a sharp increase in the number of foreign military instructors coming to Ukraine. A rise in the number of foreign military experts, may come as a ''preparation'' - towards another offensive of Ukrainian troops on the Donbass, officials at the Donetsk administration believe.
"We do not exclude that the servicemen of foreign armed forces arriving, will take part in planning and conducting an offensive operation," the head of the press service of the People's Republic of Donetsk, Daniil Bezsonov said, adding that this is about military instructors from the US and Canada.
In general, the topic of the presence of military experts in Ukraine, is not new at all. This is a whole industry, where Western businesses and politics are intertwined, in the most bizarre way. A few years ago, for example, the US congress adopted a package of special amendments, prohibiting Pentagon experts from training neo-Nazi paramilitary units. However, as it turns out, nothing stops Western instructors from training members of, for example, such an infamous "special unit" as the Azov Battalion.
It is worth saying that Andrei Biletsky, the head of this military group, has repeatedly stated that the purpose of the unit was "to lead a crusade of the white race against Semitic sub-humans."
Today, however, the military instructors, who train Ukrainian militants, represent private military companies from the West. The European Security Academy (ESA) works with the Azov Battalion, closely.
Azov representatives even wrote a letter of gratitude to the ESA, which reads:
"The soldiers and the command of the Azov special purpose regiment, express their gratitude to instructors from the European Security Academy - Ukraine, for their help in defending the Ukrainian state."
ESA instructors have been "working" with Azov since 2015, if not earlier. Members of the battalion wrote on their web site, that they undergo training to wage war against a strong and experienced adversary:
"ESA instructors developed a training program specifically for the war we came across. Since our enemy has a lot of experience and strength, we have to adapt to its tactics and become even more effective. The nature of enemy's actions is different on different sectors of the front, that's why our divisions need to be prepared for any development," a message posted on the website of the organisation said.
In general, the war that Ukraine is waging today, is not a war against either Donetsk or Luhansk - this is a war against Russia. The two breakaway republics do not make a strong enemy.
Interestingly, reports about Azov's connection with Western PMCs originally came from Bellingcat bloggers. This is also a very special organisation, that usually collects photos from open sources and then uses them to make unimaginable discoveries.
In general, Bellingcat shares an extremely negative attitude to Russia. They have been working with US government structures on issues of the Ukrainian crisis for several years. The results of this work have been doubtful to all, except for those US government structures.
All in all, the training of Ukrainian militants by American and European instructors has not been a secret for long, already.
In early March of this year, it was said that thousands of Ukrainian soldiers were trained, under the guidance of military instructors from the United States, Lithuania, Britain and Canada, at a secret training ground near Lvov. The range ground has been in use, since 2015, for as many as 6,000 Ukrainian military men.
The range ground is also a base for a contingent of 200 US, and 250 Canadian, military instructors.
On July 25th of this year, the US Navy started building an educational naval base in Ochakov, 130 kilometres from the Crimea. Naturally, it was reported that the base would be given away to the Ukrainian Navy of Ukraine. Yet, Ukraine does not have a navy that would require another base.
As we can see, the countries that declare themselves to be strongholds of democracy and human values, are waging a proxy war against Russia. Hotheads at Azov and other groups, dream about scorching the Donbass, before taking up Russia. No one cares about the civilians who get killed in Donetsk and Luhansk, on a regular basis. Western human values, disregard human lives.
(Source - Pravda Ru)
US and Israeli officials travelled to Ukraine - to study S-300 air defence systems October 11th, at 1:28pm
Ukraine has S-300 anti-aircraft missile systems. A delegation of US and Israeli officials has recently visited Ukraine, to study S-300 complexes, Soha News, a Vietnamese publication reports.
Syria to defend itself with Russia's S-300
The delegation of US and Israeli officials paid a visit to Ukraine after Russia delivered S-300 missile systems to Syria, after the tragic shoot down of the Ilyushin Il-20 spy plane.
Kiev convinced representatives of the delegation that Ukrainian S-300 systems were no different from Russian ones, the publication said.
According to Soha News, the trip to Ukraine was successful, because US & Israeli officials found out that F-35 Lightning II fighters, if necessary, will be able to cope with Russian or Syrian S-300 systems, deployed on the territory of Syria.
(Source - Pravda Ru)
ALL OPTIONS ON THE TABLE: Russian Air-force Support for Syrian troops - if Western coalition attacks by Paul Antonopoulos September 12th, 2018.
The Russian Aerospace Force will support Syrian troops if the Western coalition decides to launch attacks against Syria due to the provocation of the “chemical attacks” in Idlib province, according to Russian Senate International Committee member, Oleg Morozov.
Earlier, the Russian Centre for Reconciliation in Syria said filming of a provocation was being prepared, alleging the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian army, in Idlib province. Morozov said:
“Even if [Western countries] start attacking Syria, in a chemical attack, they will believe only those who are staging it. But that does not mean that the coalition doesn't attack. Syrians will fight the militants above all else, but I do not rule out our Aerospace Force providing support, but only if it is the Western coalition who starts the attack.”
As the clashes around the jihadist-occupied province of Idlib in northern Syria are drawing closer, the US has made numerous predictions, that Syrian President Bashar Assad is planning to use chemical weapons in combat, although they do not provide any evidence and motives, for such an event.
In other words, the US is preparing for an intensification of its involvement in Syria, not a decrease, as Daesh (ISIS) and other Syrian jihadists, are approaching defeat.
Scenario of southern Syria ...could be repeated, in last major battle in Idlib by Hummam Sheikh Ali September 6th, at 3:01pm
Xinhua - The scenario that has taken place in southern Syria and led to the retaking of vast areas there by the Syria army, could be repeated, in the northwestern province of Idlib, analysts said.
Idlib is the last major rebels stronghold in Syria, where an imminent battle is grabbing the attention of superpowers.
In southern Syria, the army fully secured Daraa, the birthplace of the over seven-year war in Syria, and other areas in south- ern Syria, in August, and is currently dealing with a pocket held by the IS, in the remote eastern countryside of Sweida province.
But the war there is considered done, as vast swathes of southern Syria has returned under the control of the Syrian army, save for al-Tanf area, where the United States has a military base, under the same name, in southeastern Syria.
In the battle in Daraa and other areas in the south, some of the rebels accepted the reconciliation, while the al- Qaida-linked Nusra Front, or Levent Liberation Committee (LLC), was reluctant, and refused to deal with the government.
However, the rebel groups fell like domino pieces in front of the army's offensive, and some factions of the LLC accepted to surrender their heavy weapons, and evacuated toward Idlib province.
The battle in the south was quicker than anyone had expected, as the area there, mainly in Daraa, was home to various rebel groups, including the IS, whose militants are now besieged in Tilal al-Safa, in Sweida's countryside.
After the victory there, the army has shifted its focus to Idlib, which is the last major stronghold of the rebels in Syria, and the battle there is expected to be the last major one, in Syria's long- standing war.
Now that military operation in Idlib seems looming, similarities have been drawn between Idlib and Daraa.
Similiar to the situation in Daraa, the army has started amassing forces near Idlib's frontline, the few rebel- held pockets in the mountains of Latakia province in northwestern Syria, and the northern country- side of Hama province, in central Syria.
Ali Maqsoud, a retired military officer, told Xinhua that the scenario of the south will likely be repeated in Idlib.
The LLC used to be the striking force in Daraa, before its defeat, and the group has become the striking force in Idlib.
Both Daraa and Idlib were included in the de-escalation zone deal agreed upon by Russia, Turkey, and Iran, as part of the Astana talks on Syria.
But the presence of the terror-designated groups in Daraa, has undermined the six-month deal.
The LLC presence in Idlib and the expiry of the six-month period of the deal made it crucial for the army to restore the last rebel bastion, but more favorably, under international cover, as Turkey has 12 observation points in Idlib, as part of the de-escalation zones' deal.
Maqsoud, however, noted that the matter in Idlib is a bit more complicated, as it would be the last major battle in Syria's long-standing war and the foreign powers involvement is larger and deeper, than that of Daraa.
Additionally, the foreign rebels in Idlib are more, than in any other areas, especially as Idlib has turned into the destination for the rebels that left other parts of the country.
As part of the efforts to establish an international consensus about the upcoming operation, Iran will host a summit on Friday, that will group the presidents of Iran, Russia, and Turkey, to discuss the situation in Idlib.
Turkey has a considerable sway over the rebels, and its alliance with the other two powers, is crucial, at this stage, amid a rift between Ankara and Washington.
These efforts to end the situation in Idlib is also supported by Damascus, whose officials said that achieving reconciliation in Idlib is a priority, but the war against the reluctant extremists seems inevitable, after Turkey failed to persuade the LLC to dissolve.
Syria's Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem said on Friday that the country is now in the "final quarter of an hour" of the Syrian war.
Maher Ihsan, another political analyst, said a limited military campaign could be launched against the extremists' groups, while, at the same time, reconciliation deals could be struck with other factions, desirous of achieving reconciliation with the government, akin to what happened in Daraa.
He said that the amassing of forces and the tremendous political effort exerted by Iran and Russia, to make this operation happen, in order to bring an end to the battles in Syria, mean that there is no turning back from the campaign in Idlib.
It's worth noting that Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, met earlier this week, with his Saudi counter- part, Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir and a couple of days later, with Syria's Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem.
In the same timeframe, Iran's Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, held meetings in Turkey, with the Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Sure that is not an easy task, but some positive signs have appeared, after all these meetings.
Saudi Arabia's Foreign Minister, Jubeir, said at a press conference, following his meeting with Lavrov, that his country stresses the unity of Syria, and its territorial integrity, shying away from previous remarks, about the need for Assad to leave Syria.
His remarks were seen by al-Moallem, Syria's FM, as a "new change" in the Saudi stance from Syria, taking into consideration that Saudi Arabia is among the biggest supporters to the opposition in Syria and has bankrolled major rebel groups in the country, mainly the Islam Army that was pushed out of its stronghold near Damascus, to Idlib, and other areas, near the Turkish border.
For Turkey, Ankara has been apparently opposing a wide-scale operation in Idlib, with Turkey fearing for its interests there and a possible influx of refugees, as nearly 3 million civilians live in Idlib, in addition to over 20,000 militants.
As for the US, the administration there, started its reaction to the preparations for the Idlib battle through warnings by officials and President Donald Trump, as well.
Moreover, the United States, Britain, and France issued a new warning to Assad, against using chemical weapons in the battle there.
But later remarks indicate that the U.S. administration could support a limited operation in Idlib.
On Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the United States shares Moscow's concerns over the presence of terrorists in Idlib, noting that his country is ready to work on solving this issue.
For his part, the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Joseph Dunford said on Tuesday during a trip to Athens that the possible assault in Idlib, could lead to a "humanitarian catastrophe."
He noted that a precise and tailored counterterrorism campaign -- not a full-scale military offensive -- was the appropriate way to tackle extremist elements in northwest Syria.
BREAKING: Russia's State TV Advising Russian Citizens on how to survive a World War !
WAKE UP AND STOP THIS WAR ON RUSSIA !
The Doomsday clock of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists website now has the final singular moment that will bring civilization to final nuclear annihilation, at 2 minutes to midnight.
The closest it has been, up to this time, was in 1953, when the US successfully tested the hydrogen bomb.
President Assad drives to E. Goutha - in a Honda!
Syrians support Assad, but BBC won't report it, British baroness tells RT after fact-finding trip April 24th, at 4:36pm
Most Syrians support their president and military, but the BBC presents Britons with a different, one-sided story, a British baroness and member of the House of Lords told RT, after returning from a trip to the war-torn country.
Caroline Cox, a baroness and Life Peer in the House of Lords, recently returned from a tour of several Syrian cities, during which she spoke with a "wide range of people," including government officials, opposition leaders, artists, writers, intellectuals and ordinary Syrians walking in the park.
According to Baroness Cox, despite claims from western governments and media outlets, the vast majority of Syrians are thankful to President Bashar Assad and the Syrian and Russian militaries for fighting Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIL) and jihadist groups.
The Syrian people "are very grateful to the Syrian Army, to Assad and, I may say, for Russian help in getting rid of the terrorists. They are the perpetrators of the most appalling atrocities and killings."
However, British media like the BBC have done a poor job of accurately conveying this public attitude, Baroness Cox told RT.
"People are very keen to hear the point of view from people inside Syria. It's widely felt and widely reported, that BBC reporting is very biased and very one-sided, and so they really want a bigger picture."
She also dismissed accusations that her trip to Syria was in any way inappropriate or was somehow staged for propaganda purposes.
The baroness explained how she spoke freely with random people she met in the park, "something that couldn't have been 'arranged' by the government."
"I talked to two delightful Muslim ladies, in one of the parks in Aleppo, and that wasn't pre-arranged, and I asked them what they felt about the situation, and what they said was entirely consistent with what we'd hear in the formal meetings," she said.
According to Cox, her message to the British people – and to the entire world – is very simple: "Please, may we leave the Syrian people the freedom to decide their own future."
Why Can’t US Wage War on Syria? by Mohammad Salami April 12th, 2018, at 3:50pm
Since the beginning of the crisis in Syria in 2011, the United States of America has been supporting the terrorist groups to fight the Syrian army, government and people, in order to destroy the entire country and impose partition across its territories.
Syria, which functions as the centre of the axis of resistance in the region, has been facing heavy international pressures to change its strategic political position in the area. After facing heavy political & diplomatic pressures, Syria had to confront a ferocious takfiri war & intermittent Israeli air raids on various targets in the country. Finally, the manager and the leader of the international wars on Syria and the whole axis of resistance, the U.S., decided to directly interfere in the ongoing battle in Syria.
Playing the same ‘chemical game’ which covered up the US war on Iraq in 2003, President Donald Trump decided, on behalf of the whole world, to strike Syria due to what he claimed were “chemical attacks” launched by the Syrian government troops in Eastern Gouta.
Regardless of the unfounded chemical allegations, the US administration faces a number of obstacles, which block its military aspirations in Syria & the entire Middle East.
First, the US military bases in the Middle East will be under direct intensive attacks from the opposing forces. Second, the allied Arab regimes would face unstable conditions in case a largescale war erupted in the region. Third, the Zionist entity would pay the heaviest price for any American adventure against Syria and the axis of resistance.
Considering the key obstacles mentioned above, as well as many others, the US administration finds itself unable to deal any blow to Syria in the context of a major war, as the consequences would be destructive with respect to the US strategic interests in the Middle East.
In case the United States is mulling limited air raids on certain targets in Syria, such actions have not proved to be fruitful and game changing. In April, 2017, the US warplanes struck Shoairat military airport in Homs in Syria, yet the blow failed to achieve any political or field result.
In politics, surprises are always expected; however, the available political and military conditions do not allow the United States to take any reckless measure against Syria and the whole region.
Virginia Senator Black: US’s Syria Campaign is a Disgrace By Joaquin Flores March 27th, 2018
FRN is honored to present this exclusive guest editorial from the esteemed former JAG officer at the Pentagon, and current sitting 13th District representative of the Virginia state senate, Mr. Richard Black.
Guest Editorial by Richard Black
Several weeks ago, NATO powers warned that Syria was going to use poison gas against East Ghouta—site of a massive, ongoing battle between Western-backed terrorists and the Syrian Army. 
The West knew full-well that terrorists in East Ghouta had all the necessary chemicals in place to stage a false-flag attack that the West could blame on the Syrian Army.
This ploy has been used repeatedly by the CIA, the UK's MI-6, and the Turkish MIT, throughout the Syrian War.
Unfortunately for them, the Syrian Army advanced so fast that they overran the Sarin gas laboratory and captured it before the terrorists could execute their assigned plans. 
Consequently, no Sarin gas attack has yet occurred in East Ghouta. However, you can be certain that the Western intelligence services are working feverishly to resupply the terrorists with new chemicals to formulate poison gas that can be used to impugn the Syrian government. That is a major reason for the Syrian Army’s haste in over- running the final 20% of E. Ghouta remaining in terrorist hands.
Every time al Qaeda and its ilk have their backs to the wall, the U.S. led coalition ensures that the terrorists fire a few poison gas shells & kill some civilians. Not one journalist has ever asked the obvious question: “If Syria is compelled to employ poison gas, why not fire at the enemy, instead of civilians pushing baby strollers?” They won’t ask the question, because it cannot be answered. And the Mainstream Media know there are some questions that you must never ask – if you know what’s good for you.
Despite the government’s solemn pledge, the U.S. has not only put “boots on the ground,” it has unlawfully occupied two major regions of Syria. American troops have been ordered to steal Syria’s national oil wealth and seize the precious waters of the Euphrates River. We have established many bases on sovereign Syrian land, and bombed Syrian soldiers who attempted to enter American- occupied Syria. 
Our occupation of Syria is immoral and a disgrace to our nation.
Senator Richard H. Black 13th District, Virginia
Senator Black is a retired colonel who was wounded during fierce fighting as a U.S. Marine Corps officer in Vietnam. He later served as a senior JAG officer on the Army General Staff, at the Pentagon. His comments do not represent the views of the US Department of Defense. He serves as a Senator in Virginia state, representing the 13th District.
Efran and Poet's tribute to all those killed by wars
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"Death to Russia"Riots in Kiev: A Sign of War to Come in Donbass? February 22nd, 2018 - Fort Russ - By Eduard Popov, translated by Jafe Arnold
Ukraine is irreversibly slipping further into Nazification. Following the oath-taking of 600 militants of the new- found National Squads (a subsidiary organization of the Azov regiment intended to “aid” police in keeping order) and following the de facto occupation of the Cherkassy city council (the regional centre right next to the Kiev region), Ukrainian Nazis are rehearsing new assaults in the spirit of Ernst Rohm’s street fighters from 1920’s Germany.
Like any historical analogy, this one is conditional. The situation in today’s Ukraine is much worse. While in Weimar Germany the state as a whole did not indulge the Nazis -- nor use the full force of its repressive apparatus against them, in Ukraine the oligarchic regime of President Poroshenko has given the Nazi street movements the green light. Why and for what purpose, will be discussed below.
For now, let us recap the facts. On December 18th, Kiev saw Ukrainian “radicals” (Ukrainian Newspeak for out- right Nazis) from C14, Right Sector, and Nikolai Kokhanivsky’s Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (which is the continuation of Bandera’s OUN-b) attack the building of Rossotrudnichestvo (a Russian agency promoting Russian culture) with rocks and eggs.
After this, activists descended on Russian Alfa-Bank and pelted it with rocks. On their way to the Rossotrudnichestvo building, the Ukrainian "nationalists" also swooped down on Russian Sberbank and broke its windows with stones. The police stationed at Sberbank did not intervene.
What is so special about this situation? What is it here that allows us to talk of Ukrainian Nazis coordinating with the Ukrainian police and intelligence services?
First of all, the February 18th actions were prepared and advertised beforehand. A “rehearsal” was held on February 17th with a first attack on the Rossotrudnichestvo building.
At that moment, there were around 100 people inside, including many children present for a theatre rehearsal.
The Nazis broke down the doors, left graffiti inscriptions on the walls, destroyed the exhibition in honor of the Russian opera singer Feodor Chaliapin, and torched a Russian flag.
Immediately afterwards, the Nazi groups published calls across social networks to attack the same building and Russian banks the following day as part of their “Death to Russia” action. In other words, the February 18th attacks were widely advertised, rehearsed, and therefore no secret to the Kiev police.
But what did the law enforcement of the Ukrainian capital do? According to the independent Ukrainian resource, strana.ua, on February 17th the Kiev police broke their security contract with Rossotrudnichestvo’s office in Kiev. A photo has since been linked, of an official letter from the police department to the head of the Kiev branch of Rossotrudnichestvo, Konstantin Vorobyev. The letter says that due to “force majeure circumstances”, the police were hereby unilaterally cancelling their contract for the protection of premises at Borisoglebskaya street, starting at 21:00 on February 17th.
Thus, the Ukrainian state de facto gave the green light to Ukrainian Nazi attacks on cultural and financial organizations belonging to a country which maintains diplomatic and trade relations with Ukraine and on whose territory around 4.4 million Ukrainian migrant workers earn their living. Russia, alongside the EU, is still Ukraine’s main trading partner.
In my previous articles, I’ve repeatedly pointed out the link between Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov and the main Ukrainian “Aryan”, Andrey Biletsky. As it turns out, Avakov’s ties are not limited to the Azov regiment and National Squads. Kokhanivsky’s OUN, Right Sector, and C14 are organizations operating at different levels of ministerial subordination. For example, the C14 racists are considered to be the “personal proxy” Nazis of the SBU, used to carry out sensitive tasks.
Judging by everything at hand, I would presume that the attack on the Russian cultural centre was more than, or not so much of, an interior ministry affair, and that Avakov is pursuing political goals which differ, for example, from the repetitious demonstrations of force and political stances that Avakov & Biletsky coordinate in tandem.
I understand Avakov’s goal to be “warming up” a pseudo- patriotic spirit in Ukrainian society as much as possible and thereby creating a favorable psychological atmosphere in the run-up to a new war in Donbass for which, in line with our previous analyses, Russia is increasingly being presented as the main enemy of the Ukrainian oligarch-Nazi state. After all, Ukraine's military preparations in the “Anti-Terrorist Operation Zone” need appropriate propagandistic support, as only a minority of Ukrainian society wants war in Donbass, much less, a suicidal war with Russia.
By all accounts, war will break out very soon. I would like to be mistaken in this prediction, but Ukrainian military and political developments, seem to suggest that war is coming.
Do sane Ukrainians recognize this threat? Are those who once supported the Euromaidan & ATO, now reeling back in fear of the torchlight marches of Ukrainian Nazis and their rehearsals for seizing power? Without a doubt, yes.
For example, following numerous threats, searches, and SBU allegations of “revealing state secrets” (?), the editor- in-chief of strana.ua, Igor Guzhva, fled to Austria. If he had not fled, Guzhva would have shared the fate of those dozens of Ukrainian opposition journalists who have been killed under mysterious circumstances. Perhaps his site’s reporting on the Nazi attack on Russian cultural & financial institutions will be portrayed as an “FSB operation.”
Another clever Ukrainian who supported the Ukrainian state’s suicide on the Euromaidan and who now fears the possible implications of a Maidan 3.0, the political analyst Oleg Voloshin, wrote on social networks on the events of February 17th and 18th: “If this is not a lite version of 1917, then I don’t know what else to compare it to. Those who say that peacekeepers & external control must be imposed on the whole territory of Ukraine, and not only in Donbass, are right. Someone has to rein in this lumpen revolt under nationalist slogans.”
This is a more than relevant statement, especially if we consider the fact that the head of the OUN movement, Nikolai Kokhanivsky, promised that riots at Russian facilities in Kiev, will continue.
However, the sobering-up of people like Voloshin makes little difference. The “Death to Russia” action and the National Squads’ march speak to something bigger than a mere dead-end of the Euromaidan. In my opinion, all of this is the logical result of the evolution of the Ukrainian idea, as such.
On this note, I’ll end this article with a polemical statement: humanity’s main enemy in Ukraine is not Ukrainian Nazis, but “Ukrainianism” itself. The first is the brainchild off- spring of the second. The spiritual roots of Ukrainian Nazism can be traced back to the semi-literate, malicious verses of the “Ukrainian God”, Taras Shevchenko.
Eduard Popov is a Rostov State University graduate with a PhD in history and philosophy. In 2008, he founded the Center for Ukrainian Studies of the Southern Federal University of Russia, and from 2009-2013, he was the founding head of the Black Sea-Caspian Center of the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies, an analytical institute of the Presidential Administration of Russia. In June 2014, Popov headed the establishment of the Representative Office of Donetsk People's Republic in Rostov-on-Don, and actively participated in humanitarian aid efforts in Donbass. In addition to being Fort Russ' guest analyst since June, 2016, Popov is currently the leading research fellow of the Institute of the Russian Abroad and ounding director of the Europe Center for Public and Information Cooperation.
World Will Not Survive the US' Neocons' Doctrine of US World Hegemony - Paul Graig Roberts Wednesday, February 7th, 2018
"The government of the United States is clearly in demonic hands. We are overflowing with proof", writes American well known analytist and ex- official Paul Graig Roberts in his website.
Take today (2-2-18) for example. A report from the House Intelligence Committee was released that is proof that the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Justice (sic), and the Democratic National Committee are engaged in a conspiracy against American democracy and the President of the United States, with the full support of the presstitute media.
As if that is not enough, also released today, is the Pentagon’s new Nuclear Posture Review. A nuclear posture review specifies a country’s attitude to nuclear weapons and their use. In past posture reviews, nuclear weapons were regarded as unusable except in retaliation for a nuclear attack. The assumption was that no one would use them. There was always the possibility that false warnings of incoming ICBMs would result in the nuclear button being pushed, thus setting off Armageddon.
There were many false warnings during the Cold War
President Ronald Reagan was very concerned about a false warning resulting in mass death and destruction.
This is why his principal goal was to end the Cold War, which he succeeded in doing. It did not take successor governments long, to resurrect the Cold War.
The new US nuclear posture is a reckless, irresponsible, and destabilizing departure from the previous attitude toward nuclear weapons. The use of even a small part of the existing arsenal of the United States would be sufficient to destroy life on earth. Yet, the posture review calls for more weapons, speaks of nuclear weapons as “usable,” and justifies their use in First Strikes even against countries that do not have nuclear weapons.
This is an insane escalation. It tells every country that the US government believes in the first use of nuclear weapons against any & every country. Nuclear powers such as Russia & China must see this to be a massive increase in the threat level from the US.
Those responsible for this document should be committed to insane aslyums, not left in policy positions where they can put it into action.
President Trump is being blamed for the aggressive US nuclear posture announced today. However, the document is a neoconservative product. Trump, perhaps, could have prevented the document’s release, but under pressure as he is by the accusation that he conspired with Putin to steal the US presidential election from Hillary, Trump cannot afford to antagonize the neoconized Pentagon.
The neoconservatives are a small group of conspirators. Most neoconservatives are Jews allied with Israel. Some are dual-citizens. They created an ideology of US world hegemony, specifying that the chief goal of US foreign policy is to prevent the rise of any other power that could serve as a constraint on US unilateralism.
As neoconservatives control US foreign policy, this explains US hostility toward Russia and China and also the neo- conservatives’ use of the US military to remove governments in the Middle East regarded by Israel as obstacles to Israeli expansion. For two decades the US has been fighting wars for Israel in the Middle East. This fact proves the power and influence of the insane neo- conservatives. It is certain, that people as insane as the neoconservatives, would launch a nuclear attack on Russia and China.
The Russian and Chinese governments seem to be completely unaware of the threat that the neo- conservatives pose to them. I have never experienced in my interviews with Russians and Chinese, any awareness of the neo- conservative ideology. Possibly, it is too insane for them to grasp.
Ideologues such as the neoconservatives are not fact-based
They are chasing their dream of world hegemony. Russia and China are in the way of this hegemony. Having learned the limits of US conventional military power—after 16 years the US “superpower” has been unable to defeat a few thousand lightly armed Taliban in Afghanistan—the neo-conservatives know that conventional invasions of Russia or China, would lead to the total defeat of US forces.
Therefore, the neoconservatives have elevated nuclear weapons to a First Strike, usable, arsenal that in the neoconservative dream of world hegemony can be used to destroy Russia and China.
Ideologues who divorce themselves from the facts create a virtual world for themselves. Their belief in their ideology blinds them to the risks for them- selves and others that they impose on the world.
It is clear enough that without the utterly corrupt Obama Department of Justice (sic) and FBI, the utterly corrupt Clinton-controlled Democratic National Committee, and the utterly corrupt American and European presstitute media working to destroy Trump’s presidency by framing him up as “a Russian agent,” President Trump, on understanding that the Pentagon’s posture review would worsen, not normalize, relations with Russia, would have deep-sixed the demonic document that threatens all life on earth.
Thanks to the American liberal/progressive/left, the entirety of the world is faced with a far more likely nuclear demise than ever threatened us during the Cold War with the Soviet Union.
By its collaboration with the military/security complex and the corrupt Hillary DNC, the liberal/progressive/left has forever discredited itself. It is now seen by every thinking person worldwide as an insane propaganda ministry for the neoconservatives’ plan to use nuclear weapons to eliminate constraints on US unilateralism.
The liberal/progressive/left has endorsed “hegemony or death.”
They will get death. For all of us.
(Source - DONi News Agency)
According to: PaulGraigRoberts.org
Why There Is No End in Sight to America’s Generational Conflicts Wednesday February 7th, 2018
FNA - At a time when the US is laying the groundwork for its next wars in the Middle East, it’s a bit too early for Iraqi government officials to jump to the conclusion that because of the victory over ISIL, US ground troops have begun withdrawing from the country, as part of a substantial drawdown.
Lest they forget, US officials have long maintained their presence in Iraq is “permanent,” suggesting any draw- down would be limited. Moreover, the Pentagon regime doesn’t even give us figures on troop levels in Iraq anymore, so large numbers of troops could likely be withdrawn and there would still be enough troops in Iraq as to be in excess of the latest published levels. Besides, the entire narrative of ISIL – the US’s own creation - having been defeated might not be something the Pentagon regime wants to like either --- as it is liable to harm the justification of them keeping their occupying troops in Iraq and the rest of the region, eternally.
In the case of Syria, the US’s perpetual war is far from over, while the Turkish military invasion of Afrin is about to be added to the rubble of the region too. As a consequence, the damage that began with the US invasion of Iraq in 2003 has now spread to Turkey, already filled with Syrian refugees. Angry over US backing for separatist Kurdish forces in northern Syria, Ankara is potentially repeating on a small scale the American blunder of 2003. It could get big and the illegal invasion won’t go splendidly.
Coming back to the initial argument, US troops have already occupied northern Syria and, as Secretary of State Rex Tillerson only recently announced, they are slated to stay there not just until the last ISIL fighter is wiped off the face of the Earth, but until the end of time - a decision for which the Trump White House has no UN endorsement or Syrian sanction. This is because the stated goal is to support separatist Kurdish fighters in the region and play a role in undermining both the Syrian government and its Iranian backers.
As it is, it’s hard to know what will come of all this, as with so much else in US war-making over these last 17 years, it’s reasonable to assume that it won’t be good, or peaceable, or end particularly well, or possibly at all. But one thing is certain: There will be no US military victory in Syria, nor will there be any Turkish military victory. Quite the opposite, if the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Yemen are any indication, the damage will only spread, more civilians will die, more homes will be destroyed, more populations will be uprooted, and more embittered locals will be primed to join yet newer terror groups almost everywhere.
To that end, a network of 800 military bases spread across 172 countries, will help enable the US’s perpetual wars and generational conflicts - the desire for absolute power with precision strike systems, highly mobile nuclear missiles and sophisticated area-denial systems. By the count of the Pentagon regime, at the end of the last fiscal year about 291,000 personnel were deployed in 183 countries worldwide, which is the functional definition of a military uncontained and unaccountable. After all, the War Party leaders continue to insist that the US must have a military not only second to none... but globally dominant.
In today’s climate of generational conflicts, however, don’t expect the War Party to abandon the notion of unending wars and generational conflicts, much less accept the changing conditions in the world that nullify US power, adopt new doctrines that encapsulate ideas of impending conflicts and wage peace, turn the Pentagon regime into a “defense” department, start following the UN Charter and International Law, learn lessons from the Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Yemen fiascos, choose to rein in its pride and vanity, and take ownership of the resulting mess, and leave.
The message all this tells, is too painful to hear. The innocent civilians wounded, crippled and dead, in this great US charade, will always be swiftly carted offstage throughout the Middle East and beyond.
They are forever the usual victims of the US’s perpetual wars and dominance, doomed to float around the edges of the US's consciousness, all the while, ignored and reviled.
THE TRUTH ABOUT WHITE AMERICAN EMPIRE's GENOCIDE
Facebook Says It Is Deleting Accounts at Direction of US & Israeli Governments January 2nd, 2018, by Glenn Greenwald
As is always true of censorship, there is one principle driving all of this: Facebook will submit to and obey the censorship demands of governments and officials who actually wield power over it, while ignoring those who do not...
In September last year, we noted that Facebook representatives were meeting with the Israeli government, to determine which Facebook accounts of Palestinians should be deleted on the grounds they constitute “incitement.”
The meetings — called for and presided over by one of the most extremist & authoritarian Israeli officials, pro-settlement Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked — came after Israel threatened Facebook that its failure to voluntarily comply with Israeli deletion orders would result in the enactment of laws requiring Facebook to do so, upon pain of being severely fined or even blocked in the country.
The predictable results of those meetings are now clear and well-documented. Ever since, Facebook has been on a censorship rampage against Palestinian activists who protest the decades-long, illegal Israeli occupation, all directed and determined by Israeli officials. Indeed, Israeli officials have been publicly boasting about how obedient Facebook is, when it comes to Israeli censorship orders:
Shortly after news broke earlier this month of the agreement between the Israeli government and Facebook, Israeli Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked said Tel Aviv had submitted 158 requests to the social media giant over the previous four months asking it to remove content it deemed “incitement.” She said Facebook granted 95% of the requests.
She’s right. The submission to Israeli dictates is hard to overstate: As the New York Times put it in December of last year, “Israeli security agencies monitor Facebook and send the company posts they consider incitement. Facebook has responded by removing most of them.”
What makes this censorship particularly consequential is that “96 percent of Palestinians said their primary use of Facebook was for following news.” That means Israeli officials have virtually unfettered control over a key communications forum of Palestinians.
In the weeks following those Facebook-Israel meetings, reported The Independent, “the activist collective Palestinian Information Centre, reported that at least 10 of their administrators’ accounts for their Arabic and English Facebook pages — followed by more than 2 million people — have been suspended, seven of them permanently, which they say is a result of new measures put in place in the wake of Facebook’s meeting with Israel.”
Last March, Facebook briefly shut down the Facebook page of the political party, Fatah, followed by millions, “because of an old photo posted of former leader Yasser Arafat holding a rifle.”
A 2016 report from the Palestinian Centre for Development and Media Freedoms detailed how extensive the Facebook censorship is:
Pages and personal accounts that were filtered and blocked:
Palestinian Dialogue Network (PALDF.net) Gaza now, Jerusalem News Network, Shihab agency, Radio Bethlehem 2000, Orient Radio Network, page Mesh Heck, Ramallah news, journalist Huzaifa Jamous from Abu Dis, activist Qassam Bedier, activist Mohammed Ghannam, journalist Kamel Jbeil, administrative accounts for Al Quds Page, administrative accounts Shihab agency, activist Abdel-Qader al-Titi, youth activist Hussein Shajaeih, Ramah Mubarak (account is activated), Ahmed Abdel Aal (account is activated), Mohammad Za’anin (still deleted), Amer Abu Arafa (still deleted), Abdulrahman al-Kahlout (still deleted).
Needless to say, Israelis have virtually free rein to post whatever they want about Palestinians. Calls by Israelis for the killing of Palestinians are commonplace on Face- book, and largely remain undisturbed.
As Al Jazeera reported last year, “Inflammatory speech posted in the Hebrew language … has attracted much less attention from the Israeli authorities & Facebook.” One study found that “122,000 users directly called for violence with words like ‘murder,’ ‘kill,’ or ‘burn.’ Arabs were the No. 1 recipients of hateful comments.”Yet there appears to be little effort by Facebook to censor any of that.
Though some of the most inflammatory and explicit calls for murder are sometimes removed, Facebook continues to allow the most extremist calls for incitement against Palestinians to flourish. Indeed, Israel’s leader, Benjamin Netanyahu, has often used social media to post what is clearly incitement to violence against Palestinians generally. In contrast to Facebook’s active suppression against Palestinians, the very idea that Facebook would ever use its censorship power against Netanyahu, or other prominent Israelis calling for violence & inciting attacks ...is unthinkable.
Indeed, as Al Jazeera concisely put it,“Facebook hasn’t met with Palestinian leaders, to discuss their concerns.”
The US government — meaning, at the moment, the Trump administration — has the unilateral and unchecked power to force the removal of any- one it wants from Facebook and Instagram by simply including them on a sanctions list.
Does anyone think this is a good outcome? Does anyone trust the Trump administration — or any other government — to compel social media platforms to delete & block anyone it wants to be silenced? As the ACLU’s Jennifer Granick told the Times:
’’It’s not a law that appears to be written or designed to deal with the special situations where it’s lawful or appropriate to repress speech. This sanctions law is being used to suppress speech, with little consideration of the free expression values and the special risks of blocking speech, as opposed to blocking commerce or funds, as the sanctions were designed to do. That’s really problematic.’’
Does Facebook’s policy of blocking people from its platform who are sanctioned apply to all governments? Obviously not. It goes without saying that if, say, Iran decided to impose sanctions on Chuck Schumer for his support of Trump’s policy of recognizing Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, Facebook would never delete the accounts of the Democratic Party Senate minority leader — just as Facebook would never delete the accounts of Israeli officials who incite violence against Palestinians or those who are sanctioned by Palestinian officials. Just last month, Russia announced retaliatory sanctions against various Canadian officials and executives, but, needless to say, Facebook then took no action to censor them or block their accounts.
Similarly, would Facebook ever dare censor US politicians or journalists who use social media to call for violence against America’s enemies?
To ask the question, is to answer it.
(Precis of original article in Russia Insider: http://russia-insider.com/en/facebook-says-it- deleting-accounts-direction-us-and-israeli- governments/ri22069)
Back to the future…NATO self- fulfilling war plans for Russia by Finian Cunningham Published time: November 11th, at 4:30pm
Defense ministers of the US-led NATO alliance, this week, endorsed proposals to set up two new military commands – and it is clear Russia is the target of what are, in effect, war plans.
The setting up of an Atlantic command and a logistical hub in Europe, to facilitate the transfer of troops and weapons, was openly discussed by NATO officials as being aimed at Russia, during their two-day summit in Brussels this week.
The two new commands being proposed are the first expansion of NATO’s command structure since the end of the Cold War over 25 years ago. It’s a retrograde move that is not only an unnecessary, dangerous provocation to Russia, risking self-fulfilling war threats. Moreover, NATO’s renewed organizational cranking is openly calling for the integration of European societies and economies into its madcap military escalation.
European citizens, whether they like it or not, are effectively being dragooned into a state of war, with attendant social burdens to pay for that state of war, let alone being made to live with the risk of ultimate catastrophe, from all-out hostilities erupting.
Alexander Grushko, Russia’s official on NATO matters, said: “It is evident now that, by making such decisions, NATO members are apparently inspired by Cold War-era strategies.”He added:“It is evident that the task of confrontation with Russia, lies at the core of those efforts.”
Grushko also put the new NATO organizational expansion in the context of an ongoing aggressive buildup over several years, carried out by the US-led military alliance, along Russia’s borders.
In typical fashion, however, Western news media readily turned reality on its head by echoing NATO officials in their justification for the planned military expansion as being (allegedly) necessitated by “Russian aggression.”
Reuters called the new command posts a“deterrent factor against Russia.”While US government-run Radio Free Europe said that the expansion was“to counter the growing threat from Russia.”
Western media gave NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg free rein to accuse Russia of “attacking” Ukraine, “annexing” Crimea, and recently holding threatening war maneuvers on “NATO’s eastern flank.” The latter was a reference to the Zapad military defense exercises carried out by Russia every four years – held on its own territory or that of an ally. The idiotic “NATO’s eastern flank” made apparently intelligible by Western media.
As befitting a propaganda service, rather than news services, the Western media uniformly omit any mention of how NATO states were instrumental in staging a coup d’état in Ukraine in February 2014, overthrowing an elected government back then with neo-Nazis who had designs on viciously suppressing ethnic Russians in Crimea and eastern Ukraine.
RFE reported:“Russia occupied and seized Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula in March 2014 and backs separatists whose war against Kiev’s forces has killed more than 10,000 people in eastern Ukraine since April of that year.”
Note how Russia and separatists are subtly blamed for killing 10,000 people.
RFE added:“A series of potentially dangerous close encounters between Russian and NATO warplanes and navy ships in recent months has added to the tension, with the alliance accusing Moscow of aggressive maneuvers in the air and at sea.”
Well, perhaps “close encounters” would not happen if the NATO alliance could refrain from its escalation of warplanes and navy patrols in the Baltic and Black Seas.
Stoltenberg “explained” the purpose of NATO’s two new command structures.“It is about how to move [American] forces across the Atlantic and how to move forces across Europe,”he said.
He added:“We have been very focused on out-of-area expeditionary military operations, now we have to increase the focus on collective defense in Europe, and that’s the reason why we are adapting the command structure.”
You have to admire the former Norwegian prime minister’s verbal skills for euphemism. By“out-of-area expeditionary military operations,”he was referring to US-led NATO wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya, among other overseas operations, which have resulted in the destruction of nation-states, over a million civilian deaths, the spread of terrorism and the chaos of mass human displacement and refugees.
Now by“increasing focus on the defense of Europe,” the 29-member NATO club – officially charged with maintaining security – will be further ratcheting up tensions with Russia to the point where an out- break of war is a grave risk.
Earlier, Stoltenberg claimed that the world was more dangerous than ever since the end of the Cold War. Provocatively, and recklessly, he cited “Russian aggression” alongside North Korea’s nuclear program and international terrorism as the three reasons for his morbid outlook.
“We have proliferation of weapons of mass destruction in North Korea, we have terrorists, instability, and we have a more assertive Russia. It is a more dangerous world,” said Stoltenberg in an interview with Britain’s Guardian newspaper, which, of course, did not challenge any of his assertions.
Perhaps if US President Donald Trump were to hold a full summit with Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, the de facto leader of NATO might get Russia’s perspective and assurance that it has no such malicious plans for “invading Europe.”
But such is the relentless Russophobia and media hysteria over “Russian aggression”, that Trump and Putin – the leaders of the two most powerful nuclear states – are confined to only having a glancing conversation on the sidelines of international summits, such as the APEC conference in Vietnam this week.
Last month, German publication Der Spiegel reported on a secret NATO document which showed the alliance“is preparing for a possible war with Russia.” Such is the irremediable propaganda spouted by NATO officials and regurgitated by Western media, that these war plans are becoming self-fulfilling.
What is even more sinister is that NATO is militarizing the entire European society and civilian infrastructure, to accommodate its ludicrous war mania. At the summit this week in Brussels, NATO officials said European governments and the private sector must coordinate policies, infrastructure, and laws to be able to facilitate the new transmission belt of military operations from the Atlantic to Russia’s borders.
Jens Stoltenberg said“any new command must ensure that legislation easing the transportation of troops & equipment across various national borders, is fully implemented.”
He added:“And we need to improve infrastructure, such as roads, bridges, railways, runways, and ports. So NATO is now updating the military requirements for civilian infrastructure.”
So, let’s get this straight: in an era of economic austerity when the European public is being clobbered with cutbacks and hardships, the NATO military machine wants governments to orient society and infrastructure to serve its war objectives against Russia.
Irrational, insatiable NATO wants to turn Europe into an entire garrison for war with Russia – a war which the majority of European citizens do not want or believe is, in any way, based on credible reasons.
NATO is not just going back to the future by revamping old Cold War strategies and Russophobia. It is destroying the future for European democratic and social development. Even more dastardly, it could obliterate the future by driving recklessly toward a wholly unnecessary war with Russia.
(Source - RT)
West eyes recolonization of Africa by endless war; removing Gaddafi was just first step by Dan Glazebrook October 20th, 2017
Dan Glazebrook is a freelance political writer who has written for RT, Counterpunch, Z magazine, the Morning Star, the Guardian, the New Statesman, the Independent and Middle East Eye, amongst others. His 1st book “Divide and Ruin: The West’s Imperial Strategy in an Age of Crisis” was published by Liberation Media in October 2013. It featured a collection of articles written from 2009 onwards examining the links between economic collapse, the rise of the BRICS, war on Libya and Syria and 'austerity'. He is currently researching a book on US-British use of sectarian death squads against independent states and movements from Northern Ireland & Central America in the 1970s and 80s, to the Middle East and Africa today.
Exactly six years ago, on October 20th, 2011, Muammar Gaddafi was murdered, joining a long list of African revolutionaries martyred by the West, for daring to dream of continental independence.
Earlier that day, Gaddafi’s hometown of Sirte had been occupied by Western-backed militias, following a month-long battle during which NATO and its ‘rebel’ allies pounded the city’s hospitals and homes with artillery, cut off its water and electricity, and publicly proclaimed their desire to ‘starve [the city] into submission’. The last defenders of the city, including Gaddafi, fled Sirte that morning, but their convoy was tracked and strafed by NATO jets, killing 95 people. Gaddafi escaped the wreckage but was captured shortly afterward. I will spare you the gruesome details, which the Western media gloatingly broadcast across the world as a triumphant snuff movie, suffice to say that he was tortured and eventually shot dead.
We now know, if testimony from NATO’s key Libyan ally Mahmoud Jibril is to be believed, it was a foreign agent, likely French, who delivered the fatal bullet. His death was the culmination of not only seven months of NATO aggression, but of a campaign against Gaddafi and his movement, the West had been waging for over three decades.
Yet it was also the opening salvo in a new war - a war for the militarily recolonization of Africa.
The year 2009, two years before Gaddafi’s murder, was a pivotal one for US-African relations. First, because China overtook the US as the continent’s largest trading partner; and second as Gaddafi was elected president of the African Union.
The significance of both, for the decline of US influence on the continent couldn't be clearer. While Gaddafi was spearheading attempts to unite Africa politically, committing serious amounts of Libyan oil wealth to make this dream a reality, China was quietly smashing the West’s monopoly over export markets and investment finance. Africa no longer had to go cap-in- hand to the IMF for loans, agreeing to whatever self- defeating terms were on offer, but could turn to China - or indeed Libya - for investment. And if the US threatened to cut them off from their markets, China would happily buy up whatever was on offer. Western economic domination of Africa was under threat, as never before.
The response from the West, of course, was a military one.
Economic dependence on the West - rapidly being shattered by Libya and China - would be replaced by a new military dependence. If African countries would no longer come begging for Western loans, export markets, and investment finance, they would have to be put in a position where they would come begging for Western military aid.
To this end, AFRICOM - the US army’s new ‘African command’ - had been launched the previous year, but humiliatingly for George W. Bush, not a single African country would agree to host its HQ; instead, it was forced to open shop in Stuttgart, Germany. Gaddafi had led African opposition to AFRICOM, as exasperated US diplomatic memos later revealed by WikiLeaks, made clear. And US pleas to African leaders to embrace AFRICOM in the ‘fight against terrorism’, fell on deaf ears.
After all, as Mutassim Gaddafi, head of Libyan security, had explained to Hillary Clinton in 2009, North Africa already had an effective security system in place, through the African Union’s ‘standby forces,' on the one hand, and CEN-SAD on the other. CEN-SAD was a regional security organization of Sahel and Saharan states, with a well- functioning security system, with Libya as the lynchpin. The sophisticated Libyan-led counter-terror structure meant there was simply no need for a US military presence. The job of Western planners, then, was to create such a need.
NATO’s destruction of Libya simultaneously achieved three strategic goals for the West’s plans for military expansion in Africa. Most obviously, it removed the biggest obstacle and opponent of such expansion, Gaddafi himself. With Gaddafi gone, and with a quiescent pro-NATO puppet government in charge of Libya, there was no longer any chance that Libya would act as a powerful force against Western militarism. Quite the contrary - Libya’s new government was utterly dependent on such militarism, and knew it.
Secondly, NATO’s aggression served to bring about a total collapse of the delicate but effective North African security system, which had been underpinned by Libya. And finally, NATO’s annihilation of the Libyan state effectively turned the country over to the region’s death squads and terror groups. These groups were then able to loot Libya’s military arsenals and set up training camps at their leisure, using these to expand operations right across the region.
It is no coincidence that almost all of the recent terror attacks in North Africa - not to mention Manchester - have been either prepared in Libya or perpetrated by fighters trained in Libya. Boko Haram, Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, ISIS, Mali’s Ansar Dine, and literally dozens of others, have all greatly benefited from the destruction of Libya.
By ensuring the spread of terror groups across the region, the Western powers had magically created a demand for their military assistance which hitherto did not exist. They had literally created a protection racket for Africa.
In an excellent piece of research published last year, Nick Turse wrote how the increase in AFRICOM operations across the continent has correlated precisely with the rise in terror threats. Its growth, he said, has been accompanied by ''increasing numbers of lethal terror attacks across the continent including those in Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, and Tunisia.''
In fact, data from the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism at the University of Maryland shows that attacks have spiked over the last decade, roughly coinciding with AFRICOM’s establishment. In 2007, just before it became an independent command, there were fewer than 400 such incidents annually in sub-Saharan Africa. Last year, the number reached nearly 2,000. By AFRICOM’s own official standards, of course, this is a demonstration of a massive failure.
Viewed from the perspective of the protection racket, however, it is a resounding success, with US military power smoothly reproducing the conditions for its own expansion.
This is the Africa policy Trump has now inherited. But because this policy has rarely been understood as the protection racket it really is, many commentators have, as with so many of Trump’s policies, mistakenly believed he is somehow ‘ignoring’ or ‘reversing’ the approach of his predecessors. In fact, far from abandoning this approach, Trump is escalating it with relish.
What the Trump administration is doing, as it is doing in pretty much every policy area, is stripping the previous policy of its ‘soft power’ niceties to reveal and extend the iron fist which has in fact been in the driving seat all along. Trump, with his open disdain for Africa, has effectively ended US development aid for Africa - slashing overall African aid levels by one third, and transferring responsibility for much of the rest from the Agency for International Development to the Pentagon - while openly tying aid to the advancement of “US national security objectives.”
In other words, the US has made a strategic decision to drop the carrot in favor of the stick. Given the overwhelming superiority of Chinese development assistance, this is unsurprising. The US has decided to stop trying to compete in this area, and instead to ruthlessly and unambiguously pursue the military approach which the Bush and Obama administrations had already mapped out.
To this end, Trump has stepped up drone attacks, removing the (limited) restrictions that had been in place during the Obama era. The result has been a ramping up of civilian casualties, and consequently of the resentment and hatred which fuels militant recruitment. It is unlikely to be a coincidence, for example, that the al Shabaab truck bombing that killed over 300 people in Mogadishu, last weekend, was carried out by a man from a town which suffered a major drone attack on civilians, including women and children, in August.
Indeed, a detailed study by the United Nations recently concluded that in “a majority of cases, state action appears to be the primary factor finally pushing individuals into violent extremism in Africa.” Of more than 500 former members of militant organizations interviewed for the report, 71% pointed to “government action,” including “killing of a family member or friend” or “arrest of a family member or friend” as the incident that prompted them to join a group. And so the cycle continues: drone attacks breed recruitment, which produces further terror attacks, which leaves the states involved more dependent on US military support. Thus does the West create the demand for its own ‘products.'
It does so in another way as well. Alexander Cockburn, in his book ‘Kill Chain,' explains how the policy of ‘targeted killings’ - another Obama policy ramped up under Trump - also increases the militancy of insurgent groups. Cockburn, reporting on a discussion with US soldiers about the efficacy of targeted killings, wrote that: “When the topic of conversation came round to ways of defeating the [roadside] bombs, everyone was in agree- ment. They would have charts up on the wall showing the insurgent cells they were facing, often with the names & pictures of the guys running them," Rivolo remembers. "When we asked about going after high-value individuals and what effect it was having, they’d say,
‘Oh yeah, we killed that guy last month, and we’re getting more IEDs than ever.’ They all said the same thing, point blank: ‘[O]nce you knock them off, a day later you have a new guy who’s smarter, younger, more aggressive and is out for revenge.”’
Alex de Waal has written how this is certainly true in Somalia, where, he says, “each dead leader is followed by a more radical deputy.'' After a failed attempt in January 2007, the US killed Al Shabaab’s commander, Aden Hashi Farah Ayro, in a May 2008 air strike. Ayro’s successor, Ahmed Abdi Godane (alias Mukhtar Abu Zubair), was worse, affiliating the organization with Al-Qaeda. The US succeeded in assassinating Godane in September 2014. In turn, Godane was succeeded by an even more determined extremist, Ahmad Omar (Abu Ubaidah).
It was presumably Omar who ordered the recent attack in Mogadishu, the worst in the country’s recent history.
''If targeted killing remains a central strategy of the War on Terror”, De Waal wrote, “it is set to be an endless war.”
But endless war is the whole point. For not only does it force African countries, finally freeing themselves from dependence on the IMF, into dependence on AFRICOM; it also undermines China’s blossoming relationship with Africa.
Chinese trade and investment in Africa continues to grow apace. According to the China-Africa Research Initiative at John Hopkins University, Chinese FDI stocks in Africa had risen from just 2% of the value of US stocks in 2003 to 55% in 2015, when they totaled $35 billion. This proportion is likely to rapidly increase, given that “Between 2009 and 2012, China’s direct investment in Africa grew at an annual rate of 20.5%, while levels of US FDI flows to Africa declined by $8 billion in the wake of the global financial crisis”. Chinese-African trade, meanwhile, topped $200 billion in 2015.
China’s signature ‘One Belt One Road’ policy - to which President Xi Jinping has pledged $124 billion to create global trade routes designed to facilitate $2 trillion worth of annual trade - will also help to improve African links with China. Trump’s policy toward the project was summarised by Steve Bannon, his ideological mentor, and former chief strategist in just eight words: “Let’s go screw up One Belt One Road.”
The West’s deeply destabilizing Africa policy - of simultaneously creating the conditions for armed groups to thrive while offering protection against them - goes some way toward realizing this ambitious goal. Removing Gaddafi was just the first step.
The rising of Britain’s ‘new politics’ by John Pilger October 7th, at 11:29am
Journalist, film-maker and author, John Pilger is one of two to win British journalism’s highest award twice. For his documentary films, he has won an Emmy and a British Academy Award, a BAFTA. Among numerous other awards, he has won a Royal Television Society Best Documentary Award. His epic 1979 Cambodia Year Zero is ranked by the British Film Institute as one of the ten most important documentaries of the 20th century.
Delegates to the recent Labour Party conference in Brighton seemed not to notice a video playing. The world’s third biggest arms manufacturer, BAE Systems, supplier to Saudi Arabia, was promoting guns, bombs, missiles, naval ships and fighter aircraft.
It seemed a perfidious symbol of a party in which millions of Britons now invest their political hopes. Once the preserve of Tony Blair, it is now led by Jeremy Corbyn, whose career has been very different and is rare in British establishment politics.
Addressing the conference, the campaigner Naomi Klein described the rise of Corbyn as “part of a global phenomenon. We saw it in Bernie Sanders’ historic campaign in the US primaries, powered by millennials who know that safe centrist politics offers them no kind of safe future.”
In fact, at the end of the US primary elections last year, Sanders led his followers into the arms of Hillary Clinton, a liberal war- monger from a long tradition in the Democratic Party.
As President Obama’s Secretary of State, Clinton presided over the invasion of Libya in 2011, which led to a stampede of refugees to Europe. She gloated at the gruesome murder of Libya’s president. Two years earlier, Clinton signed off on a coup that overthrew the democratically elected president of Honduras. That she has been invited to Wales on 14 October to be given an honorary doctorate by the University of Swansea because she is “synonymous with human rights” is unfathomable.
Like Clinton, Sanders is a cold-warrior and “anti-communist” obsessive with a proprietorial view of the world beyond the United States. He supported Bill Clinton’s and Tony Blair’s illegal assault on Yugoslavia in 1998 and the invasions of Afghanistan, Syria and Libya, as well as Barack Obama's campaign of terrorism by drone. He backs the provocation of Russia and agrees that the whistleblower Edward Snowden should stand trial. He has called the late Hugo Chavez – a social democrat who won multiple elections - "a dead communist dictator".
While Sanders is a familiar US liberal politician, Corbyn may be a phenomenon, with his indefatigable support for the victims of US and UK imperial adventures, and for popular resistance movements.
For example, in the 1960s and 70s, the Chagos islanders were expelled from their homeland, a British colony in the Indian Ocean, by a Labour government. An entire population was kidnapped. The aim was to make way for a US military base on the main island of Diego Garcia: a secret deal for which the British were “compensated” with a discount of $14 million off the price of a Polaris nuclear submarine.
I have had much to do with the Chagos islanders and have filmed them in exile in Mauritius and the Seychelles, where they suffered and some of them “died from sadness”, as I was told. They found a political champion in a Labour Member of Parliament, Jeremy Corbyn.
So did the Palestinians. So did Iraqis terrorized by a Labour prime minister’s invasion of their country in 2003. So did others struggling to break free from the web of western power. Corbyn supported the likes of Hugo Chavez, who brought more than hope to societies subverted by the US behemoth.
And yet, now Corbyn is closer to power than he might have ever imagined, his foreign policy remains a secret.
By secret, I mean there has been rhetoric and little else. “We must put our values at the heart of our foreign policy,” he said at the Labour conference. But what are these “values”?
Since 1945, like the Tories, British Labour has been an imperial party, obsequious to Washington: a record exemplified by the crime in the Chagos islands.
What has changed? Is Corbyn saying Labour will uncouple itself from the US war machine, and the US spying apparatus and US economic blockades that scar humanity?
His shadow Foreign Secretary, Emily Thornberry, says a Corbyn government “will put human rights back at the heart of Britain’s foreign policy”. But human rights have never been at the heart of British foreign policy - only “interests”, as Lord Palmerston declared in the 19th century: the interests of those at the apex of British society.
Thornberry quoted the late Robin Cook who, as Tony Blair’s first Foreign Secretary in 1997, pledged an “ethical foreign policy” that would “make Britain, once again, a force for good in the world”.
History is not kind to imperial nostalgia. The recently commemorated division of India by a Labour government in 1947 – with a border hurriedly drawn up by a London barrister, Gordon Radcliffe, who had never been to India and never returned – led to blood- letting on a genocidal scale.
Shut up in a lonely mansion, with police night and day Patrolling the gardens, to keep the assassins away, He got down to work, to the task of settling the fate Of millions. The maps at his disposal were out of date And the Census Returns almost certainly incorrect, But there was no time to check them, no time to inspect contested areas. The weather was frightfully hot, And a bout of dysentery kept him constantly on the trot, But in seven weeks it was done, the frontiers decided, A continent, for better or worse, divided. W.H. Auden, ‘Partition’
It was the same Labour government (1945-51), led by Prime Minister Clement Attlee – “radical” by today’s standards - that dispatched Gen Douglas Gracey’s British imperial army to Saigon --- with orders to re-arm the defeated Japanese in order to prevent Vietnamese nationalists from liberating their own country. Thus, the longest war of the century was ignited.
It was a Labour Foreign Secretary, Ernest Bevin, whose policy of “mutuality” and “partnership” with some of the world’s most vicious despots, especially in the Middle East, forged relationships that endure today, often sidelining and crushing the human rights of whole communities and societies. The cause was British “interests” – oil, power and wealth.
In the “radical” 1960s, Labour’s Defence Secretary, Denis Healey, set up the Defence Sales Organisation (DSO) specifically to boost the arms trade and make money from selling lethal weapons to the world. Healey told Parliament, “While we attach the highest importance to making progress in the field of arms control and disarmament, we must also take what practical steps we can to ensure that this country does not fail to secure its rightful share of this valuable market.”
The doublethink was quintessentially Labour. When I later asked Healey about this “valuable market”, he claimed his decision made no difference to the volume of military exports. In fact, it led to an almost doubling of Britain’s share of the arms market. Today, Britain is the second biggest arms dealer on earth, selling arms and fighter planes, machine guns and “riot control” vehicles, to 22 of the 30 countries on the British Government’s own list of human rights violators.
Will this stop under a Corbyn government? The preferred model - Robin Cook’s “ethical foreign policy” – is revealing. Like Corbyn, Cook made his name as a backbencher and critic of the arms trade. “Wherever weapons are sold,” wrote Cook, “there is a tacit conspiracy to conceal the reality of war” and “it is a truism that every war for the past two decades has been fought by poor countries with weapons supplied by rich countries”.
Cook singled out the sale of British Hawk fighters to Indonesia as “particularly disturbing”. Indonesia is "not only repressive but actually at war on two fronts: in East Timor, where perhaps a sixth of the population has been slaughtered … and in West Papua, where it confronts an indigenous liberation movement”.
As Foreign Secretary, Cook promised “a thorough review of arms sales”. The then Nobel Peace Laureate, Bishop Carlos Belo of East Timor, appealed directly to Cook: “Please, I beg you, do not sustain any longer a conflict which without these arms sales could never have been pursued in the first place and not for so very long.”
He was referring to Indonesia’s bombing of East Timor with British Hawks and the slaughter of his people with British machine guns. He received no reply.
The following week Cook called journalists to the Foreign Office to announce his “mission statement” for “human rights in a new century”. This PR event included the usual private briefings for selected journalists, including the BBC, in which Foreign Office officials lied that there was “no evidence” that British Hawk aircraft were deployed in East Timor.
A few days later, the Foreign Office issued the results of Cook’s “thorough review” of arms sales policy. “It was not realistic or practical,” wrote Cook, “to revoke licences which were valid and in force at the time of Labour’s election victory”. Suharto’s Minister for Defence, Edi Sudradjat, said talks were already under way with Britain for the purchase of 18 more Hawk fighters.
“The political change in Britain will not affect our negotiations,” he said. He was right.
Today, replace Indonesia with Saudi Arabia and East Timor with Yemen. British military aircraft – sold with the approval of both Tory and Labour governments and built by the firm whose promotional video had pride of place at Labour’s 2017 party conference – are bombing the life out of Yemen, one of the most impoverished countries in the world, where half the children are malnourished and there is the greatest cholera epidemic in modern times.
Hospitals and schools, weddings and funerals have been attacked. In Ryadh, British military personnel are reported to be training the Saudis in selecting targets.
In Labour’s current manifesto, Jeremy Corbyn and his party colleagues promised that “Labour will demand a comprehensive, independent, UN-led investigation into alleged violations … in Yemen, including air strikes on civilians by the Saudi-led coalition. We will immediately suspend any further arms sales for use in the conflict until that investigation is concluded.”
But the evidence of Saudi Arabia’s crimes in Yemen is already documented by Amnesty and others, notably by the courageous reporting of the British journalist Iona Craig. The dossier is voluminous.
Labour does not promise to stop arms exports to Saudi Arabia. It does not say Britain will withdraw its support of governments responsible for the export of Islamist jihadism. There is no commitment to dismantle the arms trade.
The manifesto describes a “special relationship [with the US] based on shared values. When the current Trump administration chooses to ignore them … we will not be afraid to disagree”.
As Jeremy Corbyn knows, dealing with the US is not about merely “disagreeing”. The US is a rapacious, rogue power that ought not to be regarded as a natural ally of any state championing human rights, irrespective of whether Trump or anyone else is President.
When Emily Thornberry , in her conference speech, linked Venezuela with the Philippines as “increasingly autocratic regimes” – slogans bereft of facts and ignoring the subversive US role in Venezuela - she was consciously playing to the enemy: a tactic with which Jeremy Corbyn will be familiar.
A Corbyn government will allow the Chagos islanders the right of return. But Labour says nothing on renegotiating the 50-year renewal agreement that Britain has just signed with the US allowing it to use the base on Diego Garcia, from which, it has bombed Afghanistan and Iraq.
A Corbyn government will “immediately recognize the state of Palestine”. There is silence on whether Britain will continue to arm Israel, continue to acquiesce in the illegal trade in Israel’s illegal “settlements” and treat Israel merely as a warring party --- rather than as an historic oppressor given immunity by Washington and London.
On Britain’s support for Nato’s current war preparations, Labour boasts that the “last Labour government spent above the benchmark of 2 per cent of GDP” on Nato. It says, “Conservative spending cuts have put the UK’s security at risk” and promises to boost Britain’s military “obligations”.
In fact, most of the £40 billion Britain currently spends on the military is not for territorial defence of the UK but for offensive purposes to enhance British “interests” --- as defined by those who've tried to smear Jeremy Corbyn as unpatriotic.
If the polls are reliable, most Britons are well ahead of their politicians, Tory and Labour. They would accept higher taxes to pay for public services; they want the National Health Service restored to full health. They want decent jobs and wages & housing and schools; they do not hate foreigners but resent exploitative labour. They have no fond memory of an empire on which the sun never set.
They oppose the invasion of other countries and regard Blair as a liar. The rise of Donald Trump has reminded them what a menace the United States can be, especially with their own country in tow.
The Labour Party is the beneficiary of this mood, but many of its pledges – certainly in foreign policy – are qualified and compromised, suggesting, for many Britons, more of the same.
Jeremy Corbyn is widely and properly recognized for his integrity; he opposes the renewal of Trident nuclear weapons; the Labour Party supports it. But he has given shadow cabinet positions to pro-war MPs who support Blairism, tried to get rid of him and abused him as “unelectable”.
“We are the political mainstream now,” says Corbyn.
Moldova is on the Brink of War September 13th, at 10:55am - Fort Russ - By Eduard Popov, translated by Jafe Arnold
The confrontation between different branches of the Moldovan state is only intensifying. To recall, back in November 2016, the big businessman and Socialist Party candidate Igor Dodon was elected President of Moldova in direct presidential elections, whereas before, Moldova’s president was chosen by parliament.
Dodon’s election illustrated the extent to which the public supports him and reduced the executive’s dependence on parliament, the majority of whose deputies are unionists, or advocates of Moldova being absorbed by neighbouring Romania, which is an EU and NATO member.
The leading positions in parliament currently belong to the Democratic Party, which is the main opponent of a rapprochement with Russia. Dodon is also opposed by the government, which is controlled by the wealthiest oligarch in Moldova and leader of the Democratic Party, Vladimir Plahotniuc.
But the most dangerous force of all is that which lurks behind these anti-Dodon (& anti-Russia) forces. This force, of course, is the United States of America.
Igor Dodon represents a few qualities which are extremely undesirable for pro-Western forces. He is for developing good-neighbourly relations with Russia (the very slogan of which brought him to power); he is against Moldova being annexed by Romania; plus, Dodon is against Moldova being taken over by NATO. Thus, Dodon figures among a minority of Moldovan politicians, but with a majority of Moldovans, as a politician standing for preserving Moldova’s sovereignty.
Dodon has even managed to get some things done. For example, he deprived ex-Romanian President Traian Basescu of Moldovan citizenship, who is one of the most radical supporters of annexation, who has imposed & interfered in Moldova’s domestic affairs. Dodon has also stood against solving the Transnistria problem by military means.
The Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic, or Transnistria, arose as a reaction to the unionists' course of pursuing Moldova's annexation by Romania, a scheme which threatened to turn Russians, Gagauz, Bulgarians, and Moldovans themselves into second class citizens in a “Greater Romania.” The left bank of the Dniester perfectly remembers the conditions prevailing when it was part of the Kingdom of Romania.
Moreover, the reluctance of the Russian and Gagauz population to be in a position of powerless minorities is shared by many Moldovans. Thus, over the course of a short civil war, the Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic won its independence, and peace in the region has been, according to the 1992 peace agreement between Moldova and Russia, maintained by Russian peacekeepers stationed in Transnistria.
As a patriot of Moldova, Dodon stands for re-integrating Transnistria back into Moldova, but by peaceful means. On September 12th, he voiced a three-point road map for peaceful reintegration and rejected plans for Moldova’s annexation by Romania.
The war games held close to Transnistria's border with Ukraine by Romania, Ukraine, and NATO countries last year, plus the blockade of the unrecognized republic’s land and air space by Moldova in tandem with Ukraine and with Romania’s support, allow us to postulate that Dodon’s peace plan contradicts the intentions of the unionists. Annexation advocates would rather abandon the territory of Transnistria, than integrate it in Moldova on a federal basis.
The conflict between different branches of the government has recently been joined by the military, which makes the situation even more volatile.
On the eve of September 6th, the Moldovan government passed a resolution on a participation of Moldovan troops in Rapid Trident international war games in Ukraine held from September 8th to September 23rd in Lvov region’s training polygons. President Dodon suspended the government’s decree, but the military didn't submit.
Moldovan forces were still sent to the NATO exercises in neighboring Ukraine. Dodon demanded that PM Pavel Filip fire the leadership of the Ministry of Defense.
The President also instructed that an internal investigation be held to determine who exactly violated the presidential decree and, in turn, punish and demote them.
Moldova’s Speaker of Parliament, Andrian Candu, reacted to the President’s statement with undisguised sarcasm:“The military should participate in any activities which allow them to gain experience. What kind of Commander-in- Chief are you if you don’t care about the army?”
The Moldovan military is thus in effect, defying the orders of the President who, according to the Moldovan constitution, is the supreme Commander-in-Chief.
Under these circumstances, Dodon’s prerogatives in the foreign policy sphere have been restricted to a bare minimum, and in a humiliating manner. In an illustrative show of defiance against both Dodon and Russia, the civilian aircraft carrying Russian Vice Prime Minister Rogozin to Chisinau for talks with Dodon had its air corridor closed by Romania's authorities.
In our opinion, the threat of a military conflict on the left bank of the Dniester is growing, in tandem with the threat of a coup d’etat in Chisinau.It is highly unlikely, however, that the situation will have the same result as the Ukrainian scenario.
Whereas the Euromaidan overwhelmed Kiev and the Anti- Maidan was too weak, in Chisinau thousands of people are prepared to go out into the streets in support of Moldovan independence, and they are ready for street fights. What’s more, Dodon seems to have stronger nerves than ex-Ukrainian President Yanukovych.
Most likely, the situation at hand is an attempt at removing Dodon from power relying on legal tricks and the open support of Western countries and non-governmental organizations. His orders are, & will continue to be, simply ignored. Nor can we exclude more radical scenarios, including a violent overthrow of Dodon and even political assassination. Recent European history has not seen assassinations of heads of state, and we can only hope that it won’t. At the same time, however, the case of Yanukovych’s escape, in which Russian President Vladimir Putin was compelled to literally save his Ukrainian counterpart's life, shows that pro-US forces will not stop even at murdering a head of state to attain their goals.
Dodon’s removal (or elimination) would open a window of opportunity for NATO & the US. Without asking the Moldovan people’s opinion (the majority of Moldovan citizens favour non-aligned status for their country) Moldova would be dragged into NATO, as was the case with Montenegro. Then Moldova would be annexed by Romania, and Romanian fascists will inevitably try to reimpose control over the Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic, with the active assistance of Nazi Ukraine. While Transnistria is important in itself, more important for these forces, is depriving Russia of a foothold on the Dniester & dragging Russia into war in a distant theatre.
Avoiding Nuclear War: Why Kim Jong-Un’s Strategy Makes Sense Federico Pieraccini 11/8/2017
Looking at the recent N. Korean testing of two intercontinental missiles, it may seem that Pyongyang wishes to increase tensions in the region. A more careful analysis however, shows how the DPRK is implementing a strategy which will likely succeed in averting a disastrous war on the peninsula.
In the last four weeks, North Korea seems to have implemented the second phase of its strategy against South Korea, China and the US.
The North Korean nuclear program seems to have reached an important juncture, with two tests carried out at the beginning and end of July. Both missiles seem capable of hitting the US mainland, although doubts still remain over Pyongyang's ability to miniaturize a nuclear warhead to mount it on an inter- continental ballistic missile (ICBM).
However, the direction in which North Korea’s nuclear program is going ensures an important regional deterrent against Japan and S. Korea, and in some respects, against the US, which is the main reason for North Korea’s development of ICBMs. Recent history has repeatedly demo- nstrated the folly of trusting the West (the fate of Gaddafi remains fresh in our minds) and suggests instead, the building up of an arsenal, which poses a serious deterrence to US bellicosity.
It is not a mystery that from 2009 to date, North Korea's nuclear capacity has increased in direct proportion to the level of distrust visited on Pyongyang by the West. Since 2009, the six-party talks concluded, Kim Jong-un has realized that the continuing threats, practices, and arms sales of the US to Japan and S. Korea, needed to be thwarted in some way, in the interests of defending the DPRK's sovereignty. Faced with an infinitely lower spending capacity than the three nations mentioned, Pyongyang chose a 2-fold strategy: to pursue nuclear weapons as an explicit deterrence measure; and to strengthen its conventional forces, keeping in mind that Seoul is only a stone’s throw away from the North Korean artillery.
This 2-fold strategy has, in little more than eight years, greatly strengthened the ability of the DPRK to resist infringement of its sovereignty. In contrast to the idea commonly promoted in the West's media, Pyongyang has vowed not to use nuclear weapons first, reserving their use only in response to aggression against itself. In the same way, a pre-emptive attack on Seoul, using traditional artillery, would be seen as an intolerable aggression, dragging Pyongyang into a devastating war. Kim Jong-un’s determination in developing conventional and nuclear deterrence, has now succeeded in establishing a balance of power that helps avoid a regional war and, in so doing, contributes to the strengthening of overall security in the region --- contrary to what many believe.
The reason the US continues to raise tensions with Pyongyang and threaten a conflict, is not out of a concern to protect her Japanese or S. Korean allies, as one may initially be led to think.
The United States in the region, has a central aim that doesn't concern Kim Jong-un or his nuclear weapons. Rather, it is driven by their perennial necessity, to increase forces in the region for the US' purposes: of maintaining a balance of military forces (Asian Pivot) and ultimately, trying to contain the rise of the People's Republic of China (PRC).
One might even argue that this strategy poses dangers not only to the entire region, but, in the case of any confrontation between Washington and Beijing, the entire planet, given the nuclear arsenal possessed by the US and the People's Republic of China.
In this respect, the triangular relationship between China North Korea and South Korea, takes on another aspect. As always, every action is accompanied by a reaction.
The statement that Beijing would prefer to get rid of the DPRK leadership is without foundation. Central in the minds of Chinese policy makers is the threat of a US containment that could undermine the country's economic growth. This strategic planning is well known in Pyongyang and explains in part why the DPRK leadership still proceeds with actions that are not viewed well by Beijing. From the North Korean point of view, Beijing has advantages from sharing a border with the DPRK, which offers a friendly leadership not hostile to Beijing.
Pyongyang is aware of the economic, political, & military burden of this situation, but tolerates it: receiving the necessary resources from Beijing to survive and develop the country.
This complex relationship leads the DPRK to carry out missile tests in the hope of gaining many benefits. First of all, it hopes to gain a regional, and possibly a global, deterrence against any surprise attacks. Secondly, it forces South Korea to have a symmetrical response to DPRK missile tests, & this strategy, coming from North Korea diplomacy, is far from improvised or incongruous. In recent years, S. Korea’s response has come in the form of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system, designed to intercept missiles. As repeatedly explained, it is useless against North Korean rockets, but poses a serious threat to the Chinese nuclear arsenal, as its powerful radars are able to scout much of China's territory... also being ideally positioned to intercept (at least in theory) a responsive nuclear strike from China. In a nutshell, THAAD is a deadly threat to China's strategic nuclear parity.
From the point of view of the four nations involved in the region, each has different aims. For the US, there are many advantages in deploying THAAD: in increases pressure on China, as well as concludes an arms sale that is always welcomed by the military- industrial complex; it also gives the impression of addressing the DPRK nuclear problem adequately. South Korea, however, finds itself in a special situation, with the former president now under arrest for corruption. The new president, Moon Jae-in, would prefer dialogue rather than deployment of new THAAD batteries.
In any case, after the latest ICBM test, Moon required an additional THAAD system in the Republic of Korea, in addition to the launchers already there. With no particular options available, to conduct a diplomatic negotiation, Seoul is following Washington in a spiral of escalation that certainly does not benefit the peninsula's economic growth. Ultimately, the PRC sees an increase in the number of THAAD carriers close to the country, and the DPRK is growing in its determination to pursue a nuclear deterrent. Indeed, Pyongyang' strategy is working: on the one hand, they are developing a nuclear weapon, to deter external enemies; on the other, they are obligating the PRC to adopt a particularly hostile attitude towards South Korea’s deployment of THAAD. In this sense the numerous economic actions of Beijing towards Seoul, can be explained: as a response to the deployment of the THAAD batteries.
China is the main economic partner of South Korea, and this trade & tourism limitation is quite damaging to S. Korea’s economy.
This tactic has been used by North Korea for the last several years, and the results, in addition to the recent economic crunch between the PRC and South Korea have indirectly led to the end of the reign of the corrupt leader Park Geun- hye, an ever-present puppet in US hands. The pressure that the DPRK applies to bilateral relations between China and S. Korea, increases with each launch of an ICBM carrier, and is the logic behind these missile tests. Pyongyang feels justified in urging its main ally, China, to step up actions against Seoul, to force it to compromise in a diplomatic negotiation with Pyongyang, without the overbearing presence of its US ally pushing for war.
The main problem in the relations between South Korea, China and North Korea is represented by US influence --- and its need to prevent a rapprochement between these parties. As already stated, the US needs the DPRK to justify its presence in the region, aiming - in reality - at Chinese containment. Pyongyang has been isolated and sanctioned for almost 50 years, yet serves to secure China’s southern border in the form of a protected friend, rather than an enemy.
This situation, more than any United Nations sanction to which the PRC adheres, guarantees a lasting relationship between the countries. Beijing is well aware of the weight of isolationism and the economic burden on North Korea, which is why Beijing is symmetrically increasing the pressure on South Korea, to negotiate.
In this situation, the US is trying to remain relevant in the regional dispute, while not having a capacity to influence the Chinese decisions that clearly rely on other tactics... specifically, putting pressure on South Korea.
In military terms, as explained above, Washington can't start any military confrontation against the DPRK. The consequences, in addition to millions of deaths, would lead Seoul to break relations with Washington & seek an immediate armistice, cutting off the United States from negotiations and likely expelling US troops from its territory. Ultimately, there is no S. Korean ability to influence the political process in the North, while they continue to be flanked by the United States in terms of warfare (very aggressive joint exercises).
The influence Washington can exert on Pyongyang is zero, having fired all cartridges, with over 50 years of sanctions.
The bottom line is that the United States cannot afford to attack the DPRK. Pyongyang will continue to develop its own nuclear arsenal, with Beijing's covert blessing, in spite of its officially continuing to condemn these developments. At the same time, South Korea is likely to persevere with a hostile attitude, especially in regard to the deployment of new THAAD batteries.
Sooner or later, Seoul will come to a breaking point, as a result of further restrictions on trade between China and South Korea. As long as Seoul is able to absorb Chinese sanctions, little will change.
What will lead to a major change in the region will be the economic effect of these restrictions, that will eventually oblige Seoul to consider its role in the region & its future.
Seoul's leadership is aware of the 3 situations that will hardly change, namely: Pyongyang will never attack first; Beijing will continue to support North Korea, rather than accept the United States on its border; and Washington isn't able to bring solutions, but only greater chaos and a worsening global economic situation to the region.
In the light of this scenario, time is all on the side of Beijing & Pyongyang. Eventually the economic situation, for Seoul, will become unbearable, bringing it to the negotiating table with a weakened and certainly precarious position. Beijing and Pyongyang have a long-term common goal, which is to break the bond of submission between S. Korea and the United States, freeing Seoul from Washington's neo- conservative programs to contain China (on a Russia containment model).
Indirectly coordinated work between Beijing and Pyongyang is hardly understandable to Western analysts, but examining every aspect, especially with regard to cause-and-effect relationships, these decisions are not so incomprehensible and even more rational, in a broader viewing of the region and its balance of power. On the one hand, Seoul sees the DPRK offering peace, stability and prosperity, based on a framework agreement between Seoul, Pyongyang and Beijing. This would also particularly benefit S. Korean trade with China, eventually returning to more normal relationships between the two countries, and with important economic benefits.
The alternative is an alliance with Washington that would completely eliminate the economic benefits of a healthy relationship with Beijing. This could even potentially lead to a war involving millions of deaths, fought on S. Korean soil and not in the United States. The United States does not offer any solutions to South Korea, either in the short or long term. The only thing Washington is offering, is a fixed presence in the country, together with a stubborn anti-Chinese policy that would have serious economic consequences for Seoul.
As paradoxical as it may seem, Kim Jong-un's rockets are much less of a threat, than is Seoul’s partnership with Washington in the region, and in fact, seem to offer Seoul the ultimate solution to the crisis in the peninsula.
US-Congress checkmates the Merkel-Europe 5/8/2017 by Maurizio Blondet
In the draconian sanctions imposed by the US Congress against Russia, & now signed by Trump, there are some paradoxical side effects for the so-called leaders of a United Europe under German hegemony.
Firstly, if Angela Merkel, Juncker and Mogherini hoped to have a global ally in a Congress hostile to Donald Trump - the protectionist of Americans First - they now have to find that on the contrary, Congress's anger crisis fights and bursts out against its European allies -- especially Germany & France, whose companies building North Stream 2, are now being severely penalized.
Even more than "Americans First" by The Donald, the US parliamentarians -- notoriously obedient to the American economic lobbies which are paying them -- want 'their' Germany to buy liquefied gas from fracked rocks in the USA, scaled at an incomparably more expensive cost.
Otherwise sanctions. And they will be serious and severe - as demonstrated by the billions of dollars in fines that Deutsche Bank will have to pay to the US, and another ten European banks (Swiss, German, Dutch) who have been pursued for doing business - in their respective countries, perfectly legally - with countries branded by Washington as "terrorists" & hit with sanctions - like Iran - or charged with "corruption". The US in fact, "are totally committed to the mission of enforcing a universal morality", wrote journalist Diana Johnstone, and created agencies such as the Foreign Assistance Office, with a budget of $30 million, plus 200 investigators who tirelessly - often with the help of their intelligence agencies, who are able to hear communications around the world - seek business practices that are "corrupt" or "distort competition" by European companies, to punish them:- by fines, by excluding them from the US Stock Exchange (with a collapse of reputation and shares) or by forbidding them to export or operate within the ''Federation''.
France's Alstom (that manufactures high-speed trains) investigated by these US bureaucratic bodies in 2014, has freed itself from the charge, by selling its electric division to General Electric, instead of to any other competitor, which swayed the Washington moralists.
BNP Paribas in the same year had to pay $9 billion to the Americans, because it transferred payments to countries hit by US sanctions: legal in French law, but since the transfers were all in dollars, it fell under US law. A law where, if you use dollars to pay for an Iranian rug, you become a "US person" subject to that law and you have to hire US lawyers: who advise you to plead guilty to plead a fine - the bargain plea - to avoid even worse penalties.
Obviously, there is no minimum reciprocity. No US company can be persecuted for its corrupt commercial practices, or industrial espionage (facilitated by CIA or NSA hearings) in Europe.
US law, a parody of legal universalism
Now Paris and Brussels, in the face of the worst and most recent sanctions against Russia, but in reality against German and French companies, plead for a "nonextraterritoriality of American law", or they may venture international lawsuits, at an ''international'' court... A little late, after years, in which European leaders accepted and bent to the legal arrogance of their Protective Superpower.
It's no longer even fair to speak of "extraterritoriality". No:- here is the new "global universal law", a parody of the Roman law, which the United States imposes on the whole world because they are the Empire of the Good, while the rest of the world is now divided between "corrupt" "terrorists" and "rogue states".
Berlin, Paris, and Brussels (Rome has no say) have accepted this "universality" without reciprocity, all the unilateral acts, have paid the billionaires fines, participating in punitive dispatches against the ''insubordinates'' - with the Universal US Law.
In short, they all accepted "American legal philosophy" as a universal value, if we can call the law of the West and guns applied to the planet, a 'value'. And now they discover - like the German Foreign Ministry - that "the United States uses sanctions as a tool to serve the interests of the US industry"? Or, as a Parisian parliamentary commission denounces, a "use of the law to serve the aims of an economic and political imperative in order to achieve strategic advantages"?
The German economy, addicted to exports
You don't know whether to cry or to laugh, in the face of this laziness, lowliness and lack of European leadership. This leadership now finds that she has been taken to be lassoed as a castrated calf, while she believed she was an ally. And with well-tied hocks, the German calf in fact, cannot take retaliatiory measures, even commercially, of any kind, nor make them vote for "her" EU:- because unanimity is needed, and having allowed into her "EU" Poland, the Baltic States and Sweden - all in a full anti- Russian paroxysm, wanting to regulate old hates with Moscow and filled with weapons from the Pentagon - unanimity is a thing that one can only dream of...
On the other hand, what sanctions do you want to oppose, when you have developed a German economy that's based for 50% of its GDP, on exports - in short, it depends largely on exports to the USA, which is still the largest global consumer. You are in their hands --- which can cause you a bad depression, if they no longer buy your BMWs.
Checkmate. Inflicted by the Americans, who are not particularly sagacious and smart chess champions.
Our so-called leaders are players even more sluggish than Trump, more dumb than the fanatic warmongers at the Congress. It's almost incredible. Humiliating and shameful.
Can they do worse? Sure they can. The Pentagon is about to provide heavy weaponry, and anti-tank missiles to the Kiev government; wants to "help" Proschenko recapture the Donbass, reopening warfare: it has already allocated $ 410 million to modernize the Ukrainian arms industry (tripling it from a year before), and spent 40 million in commando training. In short the US wants war in Europe. Almost near the borders of Germany.
"Bringing more weapons into an area that is already packed with weapons and ammunitions is a nightmare for mediators in Germany and France --- and now it is impossible to get a permanent ceasefire..." Deutschlandfunk complained.
All in all, but remembering that those "mediators of France and Germany" who would have to gain a ceasefire along the Donbass frontline, have instead, until now - for sure following orders by their governments - been shaking hands in shame, with the Kiev rightwing militias.
The "OSCE observers" have never observed their illegal violations. Merkel has always pretended to blame Putin - against whom, she has also applied the well-known sanctions.
Now, the only thing that the so-called European leaders should do is recognize the US in Ukraine as the enemy, and Moscow as their friend. To denounce, to prevent by all means, the rearming of the coup regime now on the ropes. They will not, of course. What will happen, will happen: unless they learn quickly from what the US did in Syria.
And they do not even have to look for plotter sites or read reports by some counter-intelligence agency...
Just read through the New York Times article of August 2nd: Under Trump, a Hollowed-Out Force in Syria Quickly Lost C.I.A. Backing,
where you can read:
"It was the CIA director, Mike Pompeo, who recommended to President Trump the closure of the four-year operation to arm Syrian rebels."
"Critics in the Congress[very few - Note of the author]have denounced for years, the costs and the reports that the armaments provided by the CIA were in the hands of rebels linked to Al Qaeda."
"In 2012, David Petraeus, then head of the CIA, was the first to propose an underground program to arm the rebels. A presidential decree authorizing the CIA to arm small rebel groups [was signed by Obama]. John Brennan, Obama's last-named CIA director, has remained a vigorous defender of the deal. "
A giant, criminal operation, failed and closed. Heavy armaments "finished in Al Qaeda's hands", which was probably the true purpose of the project, and the introduction into Syria of at least 20,000 trained guerrillas, who became the nerve centre of ISIS.
It cost at least a billion dollars, maybe four (but what does it matter? The FED prints them and the world accepts them in payment). Its true cost, was the hundreds of thousands of killed in Syria and the millions of refugees in neighbouring countries.
Now the Pentagon wants to repeat the operation, and openly, in Ukraine. Without obviously asking for an opinion from the "European allies", blaming their "nightmares".
Because they do not oppose it. After the next four years, the New York Times will explain to us that the operation was "wrong", confirming the high morality of the Super- power. About which Churchill, let's remember, said:
"Occasionally, our American friends experience the need to wash their conscience in a bidet. The fact is that, later, they make us drink the water. "
Translation by Costantino Ceoldo - Pravdafreelance
It’s Not Only Possible for UN to Boycott Israel – It’s Entirely Necessary Saturday July 22nd, at 7:13am
FNA - Following the violence on Friday, Jewish Voice for Peace released a statement outlining the ongoing battle for control of and access to the sacred site:
The imposition of metal detectors there is seen as an imposition of Israel’s power over the holy site. Israel has occupied the area since 1967, and there is a growing movement by right-wing Israeli activists and officials to take over the site more fully. The Al-Aqsa Mosque is a central holy site for Muslims around the world, and the issue of freedom of religion and access to the site is of deep concern to many.
It’s the latest example of the Israeli authorities using Israeli- Palestinian violence and tensions as a means of furthering their control over important sites in occupied Palestinian territory and normalizing heightened apartheid measures by Israeli forces targeting Palestinians. The United Nations might have expressed concerns on the current situation, but that’s not enough. The world body should denounce the installation of metal detectors, turnstiles, and additional security cameras in the compound. It should also condemn Israel for killing Palestinian protesters in broad daylight and in great violation of the UN Charter.
True, the US State Department’s annual terror report has just offered a surprising amount of criticism of Israel, uncharacteristic for the Trump administration, which has made a point of being outspokenly favorable toward the Israeli regime from day one. But criticism is not enough. The Israeli regime's policy toward the Palestinians, as well as the unconditional support it gets from Washington, are in no small part driving the violence in the Holy Land.
The United Nations, therefore, is required to step in and identify and condemn the continued drivers of violence. The world body should take action over Tel Aviv’s illegal settlement expansion within the occupied West Bank, its overly aggressive military tactics, and the growing lack of hope, in achieving Palestinian rights for freedom & self-determination.
All of these are long-standing criticisms toward Israel, but are rarely articulated by the UN, let alone Trump’s administration, which has been pushing for a US crackdown on the Palestinians, as a way to show support for Israel. Quite the contrary:
A new bill is getting increasing bipartisan support at the US Senate. Known as the “Israel Anti-Boycott Act,” the bill starts as a condemnation of the United Nations for its criticisms of Israeli policy, but quickly veers into matters of domestic US policy, criminalizing any US citizen “engaged in interstate or foreign commerce” holding any beliefs in support of a boycott of Israel.
This bill, threatening huge fines and decades of prison time, for ideological support of the justifiable boycott, is overtly criminalizing political thought, and is a huge infringement on freedom of speech. The House version of the bill, which is not so far along, also has many co- sponsors, again across both parties. So far not a single US lawmaker has publicly gone on record as opposing the bill, which is being loudly endorsed by AIPAC.
So -- no matter what the UN thinks about the Israeli- Palestinian conflict, one thing is clear: International Law, International Humanitarian Law, and the UN Charter all protect a Palestinian right to freedom and self-determination. They also protect all UN member states’ right to engage in boycotts against the usurper regime of Israel.
In fact, boycotting Israel could be one of the brightest stars in the UN’s Charter. It is a form of lawful and collective action --- that allows member states to make their voices heard, when the long-suffering people of Palestine need it the most. For precisely this reason, the General Assembly should hold that the UN Charter protects the right to boycott Israel.
It’s a landmark decision to protest at occupied Palestine’s persistent racial inequality and the segregation. In ringing language, the General Assembly can hold that the boycotters’ exercise of their rights to change an apartheid order that has consistently treated Palestinians as second- class citizens, rests on the highest rung of the hierarchy of UN values.
This is a proud UN legacy. At a time when Israel continues to kill Palestinians for wanting to pray in their place of worship, the right to boycott Israel can no longer be allowed to go under assault. No member state, including the US, should be allowed to stamp out boycotts and divestment campaigns aimed at Israel. The UN can and should immediately pass a resolution that supports the BDS movement and prohibits member countries from doing business with Israel.
Of course, the work towards this goal will be long and hard. The international civil society must not only be convinced that it’s necessary, but also confident that it’s possible, to come up with a global move that will rally most of the UN member states behind the Palestinians and their rightful cause.
Malorossiya: Information War Ploy --- or Real Revolution? July 18th, 2017 By Eduard Popov translated by Jafe Arnold -
On July 18th in Donetsk, leader of the Donetsk People’s Republic, Alexander Zakharchenko, proclaimed the founding of a new state -- Malorossiya ("Little Russia") -- to replace Ukraine ---- which was declared to have finally “demonstrated its bankruptcy.”
According to Zakharchenko, the establishment of a new, independent state in the likes of Malorossiya, could help stop the conflict in Donbass.
As DPR’s Minister of Revenues & Duties, Alexander Timofeev, has stated that the proclaimed Malorossiya will be a federal state, featuring broad autonomy, with its capital in Donetsk, and the flag of Bogdan Khmelnitsky, its state flag.
According to Timofeev, a constitution will be adopted by popular referendum. The minister also emphasized that the creation of Malorossiya, does not contradict the Minsk Agreements.
The Constitutional Act on the Establishment of Malorossiya declares that the established state will maintain a non-aligned status --- but it will continue to pursue its accession to the Union State of Russia & Belorussia. The document also enumerates the new state's social policy in considerable detail, emphasizing struggling against oligarchy, developing people’s control in the economy, and establishing state concerns, etc.
The founding document also declares that elements of direct democracy will be introduced, alongside criminal liability for propagandizing the ideas of Ukrainian Nazism and its collaborators (OUN-UPA, etc.).
To say the least --- this news is like a thunder bolt from a clear sky. In just a matter of hours since the declaration was made in Donetsk the first criticisms of the initiative, have already surfaced. Curiously, or perhaps, rather, tellingly, the authorities of Lugansk People’s Republic have first and foremost criticized the declaration. For instance, Chair of the People’s Council of the LPR, Vladimir Degtyarenko, claimed:
“Lugansk People’s Republic did not sent its official delegates to Donetsk to participate in the meeting of representatives of Ukraine’s regions. Moreover, we weren't even aware of the intention to hold this event and this issue was not agreed upon with us.”
Degtyarenko also stressed that“at the moment, the feasibility of such a step is questionable” insofar as “such decisions can only be made upon taking into account the opinion of the people. Moreover, we are currently observing the Minsk Agreements, to which, there is no alternative.”
The LPR’s envoy to the Minsk negotiations, Vladislav Deynego, also claims that the establishment of the new state of Malorossiya is untimely. Deynego was supported in his statement by a Donetsk colleague, the speaker of the People’s Council of the DPR and representative of the republic to the Minsk group, Denis Pushilin. The latter complained... that the People’s Council of the DPR did not participate in the initiative’s deliberation.
The criticism voiced of the Malorossiya project in the DPR & LPR speaks to the peoples’ republics’ different approaches and reflects an ideological & political struggle within the ruling institutions of the DPR and LPR.
Russia’s special envoy to the Minsk talks, Boris Gryzlov, has suggested that the project is in itself inconsistent with the Minsk Agreements. On the other hand, in Grzylov's opinion, everything is logical, if this project is considered as an element of an information war. To build on Gryzlov’s assessment, allow us to recall, that Ukraine is constantly on the attack, demanding Minsk 2 be abandoned, the Anti-Terrorist Operation Zone be ended, and martial law be imposed instead.
Zakharchenko’s announcement can quite logically be understood as an element of information war, in this regard.
Meanwhile, the Ukrainian side’s reaction, has been as expected. Ukrainian President, Petro Poroshenko, has promised that Kiev will re-assert control over Donbass & Crimea and stressed that “the ‘Novorossiya project’ is buried." Poroshenko hasn't clarified why he chose this term, and not “Malorossiya” as the new project has been christened.
As for the founding congress itself and its participants’ plans, there are still more questions than answers. We can however, direct our attention to a detail: delegates from different regions of the former Ukraine attended the founding congress of Malorossiya and expressed hope that the proclaimed federal state with a centre in Donetsk, will help to save Russian lands from the criminal Kiev regime. While there's still little detailed information as to the composition of the participating assembly, it is obvious that the event had its eyes on the numerous political emigrants in Russia, or rather Moscow, who fled after the coup d’etat in Kiev. These political exiles continue to secretly maintain contacts with their colleagues and compatriots, and are well- informed as to the mood within different sections of the Ukrainian population, including among security structures and political circles.
Let us also recall that political emigrants #1 and #2, the ousted President Viktor Yanukovych & ex-Prime Minister, Nikolay Azarov, have been increasingly politically active as of late, especially the latter.
Just several days ago, Azarov stated that he expects to return to his homeland soon. It would be logical to assume that the two events are interrelated. While it is unknown, whether Azarov was present at the congress in Donetsk (he probably was not), even if Azarov & Zakharchenko are in different parties, they share the same strategic goal - “restarting” the state of Ukraine, on new ideological and political principles, & even with a new name.
I happen to agree with Boris Gryzlov. Today’s announcement out of Donetsk undoubtedly belongs to the information war context. The proclamation also certainly goes beyond the Minsk Agreements, but then again, so does daily shelling of Donbass cities by Ukrainian artillery & Kiev’s attempts to overturn & distort implementation of the agreements’ provisions.
The Donetsk People’s Republic, its leader, Alexander Zakharchenko (the only authoritative politician in Donbass), and his supporters, are merely turning the tables on Ukraine. Zakharchenko is counter- ing the bombardment of Donbass cities with not only a tough, defensive response, but with threatening to liquidate the pseudo-Nazi, pseudo-oligarchical state of Ukraine altogether, and build a new state in its place.
Indeed, a lot of combustible material has accumulated in Ukraine’s regions, and all that is left, is providing a burning match. Therefore, an information war project -- could easily turn into a military and political reality.
Therefore, I propose that the plans to establish “Malorossiya”, be taken in all seriousness.
(Source - Fort Russ)
International relations: Accountability for criminal actions 15.07.2017
The law is perfectly clear and very explicitly and expressly laid out in the document called the United Nations Charter, which establishes clear rules as to the rights and duties of nations governing cases of international conflict. Therefore under these rules, nations should be held accountable for their actions. So why aren't they?
However absurd the notion that I can gang up with my more powerful neighbours and attack a property and its inhabitants because I covet their fertile land, using wanton force to force them off, killing some in the process, including many innocent women and children, rendering their water supply undrinkable "to break their backs" and destroying their energy producing systems so they could not fight back, yet this is exactly what happened when the West turned on Saddam Hussein in Iraq and Muammar al-Gaddhafi in Libya. And it is what is happening today, in Syria.
This is 2017. We do not have a civilized, enforceable international legal system
In any civilized state of law, or in any civilized legal system where accountability for infractions existed, the perpetrators would be summarily rounded up, arrested, dragged before a court and punished, in these cases with a penalty incurring many consecutive life sentences. But Tony Blair is walking free, George W. Bush is walking free, Barack Obama is walking free, Nicolas Sarkozy is walking free, David Cameron is walking free, Bill Clinton is walking free, Hillary Clinton is walking free, as are all their political and military advisors, in both campaigns. They are carrying on with their lives, as if nothing happened.
They used military equipment against civilian structures, occasioning the murder of civilians & military units alike, occasioning the grevious & actual bodily harm of civilians who had nothing to do with the conflict, they used military equipment to attack life-bearing services, such as water supplies and the electricity grid. In the case of Iraq they strafed fields of cereals with military jets, to burn food, they left the theatre of conflict contaminated after the conflict had ended.
In scenarios where the war is legitimate and backed by the UN Security Council (not the case in Iraq) and where UNSC Resolutions were followed (not the case with UNSC 1970 and 1973 (2011) in Libya), these are war crimes. In cases where the war is illegal and the Resolutions have been breached, these are humanitarian outrages which the human history book cannot and must not, overlook.
Iraq was a stable country, where most of the population lived in peace, had jobs, went about their daily business and placed bread on the table at the end of the day. The same is true for Libya, only more so, because it was an African country with Africa's highest Human Development Index, prior to NATO's murderous escapade. In both countries, advanced social welfare systems provided for the population's needs, in general.
Enter frontstage the West and the finger of Satan
Enter frontstage (right) the West, championed in Iraq by the United States of America and the Anglo-Saxon Syndicate (ASS, the UK and its former penal colony, Australia,) and championed in Libya, by France, the UK and US (FUKUS Axis). Immediate result: thousands of people murdered in callous & criminally negligent attacks, destabilizing the State to the point where it collapsed. As usual, they interfered with the social structure of countries touched by this hand of Satan, ignoring the Sunni in Iraq & thus giving rise to Islamic State, and in Libya, destroying the Jamahiriya system, that was a finely tuned network to guarantee peace and stability in a tribal society, giving rise to total chaos & the entry of IS into the gateway to Europe, giving rise to a horrific refugee crisis, in which, thousands more people have died.
In Iraq, eleven million people are in need of humanitarian assistance. 3.4 million are internally displaced, 700,000 of these in Mosul alone. Numerous ethnic groups which lived in harmony under Saddam Hussein, have been murdered, forced into slavery, or relegated to the status of sexual slaves (the Yazidi for example).
In Libya -- now -- nearly 20% of the population needs urgent humanitarian assistance, while 249,000, are internally displaced. These are the statistics of the USA and UK, and not of Saddam Hussein and Muammar al-Gaddhafi.
And now Syria...
And now Syria. Instead of helping the legitimate Syrian Government to form a peace & reconciliation process, what did the West do? It took sides & interfered in an internal conflict -- armed, aided, abetted and trained violent terrorist groups, and instigated them to take up arms against the State, murdering police officers, murdering emergency services personnel, murdering and raping nuns, murdering and sexually assaulting children --- raping little girls, before and after they were beheaded and after they were forced to watch their parents being executed.
And for those who draw the time line at 2011 when the crisis began and claim they are supporting poor down- trodden civilians against a dictator, let us remember that most Syrians want al-Assad to remain as their President. Over 70 per cent of them.
So for those who wish to praise the West for siding with terrorists, let us draw the time line in 1956, when a CIA plot aimed to topple the Syrian government. In 1983, a CIA document mentioned a plan to destroy Syria --- to enable a pipeline to be built and managed by pro- Western forces.
In 1986, a CIA plan was drawn up --- to launch a sectarian war between Sunni & Shia in Syria, using the Muslim Brotherhood to further this aim (a terrorist group outlawed in Syria).
In 2005, al-Assad was warned that the West was plotting regime change. In 2006, it was confirmed in a State Dept cable which discussed several strategies to achieve this.
Between 2005 and 2007 the United States of America actively supported anti-Assad opposition groups. In 2009 the USA and its chief poodle the UK funded a satellite channel to broadcast anti-Assad propaganda. In 2009 a Saudi plan to remove al-Assad and make Syria a Sunni country, was mentioned by the US State department, at the same time that the same department revealed that its ally, Saudi Arabia, was the number one source of funding terrorism worldwide. Yet the West continued & continues to do business with Saudi Arabia, engaging in handshakes, smiles, back-patting and sumptuous meals (while complaining in private that the Saudis are a load of pot-bellied, lazy, arrogant, good-for-nothings).
In 2011 special operations forces from the US, UK and Turkey were operating in Syria, before supplying terrorists with weapons and training them.
If this is not Satanic, I do not know what is. It is the responsibility of the people of the USA, its lapdog the UK, in turn, its colonial bedboy, Australia, and today, France --- to end these murderous policies via the legitimate political processes in place, through deselection of candidates, through the monitoring of votes, through bringing international policy onto their national election stage, & through questioning the constitutional legitimacy of NATO.
Surely a pan-national institution cannot dictate the foreign policies of member states? Then... why does it, and why does it make budgetary demands (2 per cent of GDP) in the process?
by Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey
(Source - Pravda.Ru)
NO WATER FOR DONBASS: West Shrugs as Ukraine's Poroshenko Commits ISIS-Style War Crime: Russia Insider
Full Text: Official Declaration of the Malorossiyan Federation
Zakharchenko announces a new federal state, Malorossiya, (means ''Little Russia'') as the legal successor of Ukraine. DONi News Agency
On 18.7.2017 the Head of the Donetsk People's Republic, Alexander Zakharchenko, declared the creation of a new federal state, Malorossiya, which will become the legal successor of 'Ukraine'. The new state formation will consist of 19 regions of the former Ukraine with the capital in Donetsk city. Kiev remains a historical and cultural centre, without the status of capital city.
Here is the full English translation of the declaration:
The project of the state of "Ukraine", formulated 150 years ago and implemented in different versions during the 20th century, has reached its logical conclusion --- and led to the country's disintegration, civil war and the death of tens of thousands of people, including children, women, and elderly people.
And this process is irreversible. An attempt to turn the story back will result in "balkanization" of the conflict, expansion of chaos, escalation of civil war and even bigger numbers of casualties.
To stop the civil war and avoid new victims, we representatives of the majority of the regions of former "Ukraine" assembled in Donetsk on July 18, 2017, discussed the current situation and came to the following conclusions:
- the state of "Ukraine" has revealed itself as a failed state and demonstrated its being incapable of granting its inhabitants a peaceful and prosperous present and future;
- the current authorities – 'president' Poroshenko and the Verkhovna Rada – elected in Kiev, after the coup d'etat, against the backdrop of political terror and the absence of elections in the Crimea and Donbass, are illegitimate;
- the state of "Ukraine" is on the brink of economic catastrophe and depopulation;
- an ultranationalist coup is brewing in Kiev, as a result of which outright neo-Nazis will come to power instead of "Banderites with a European face";
- as a result of the neo-Nazi coup, a civil war of all against all will begin in the country and cause its subsequent disintegration;
- the Ukrainian nationalistic project (the Galician one) has discredited itself, by the shedding of civilians' blood in the country;
- the ideology of "Ukrainism" has proved to be misanthropic, mixed with xenophobia (Russophobia, anti-Semitism, Polonophobia) and neo-Nazism (the ideology of national exclusivity and superiority);
- resulting from historical development and due to the Maidan, the word "Ukraine" is forever associated with the names of the Nazi accomplices, Bandera and Shukhevich, with the tragedies of the Baby Yar, the Volyn massacre & Khatyn, and, nowadays, with the mass murder of people on the Maidan, in the Trade Unions' House in Odessa, and Genocide of the Donbass people.
On the basis of the above, we believe that the state of "Ukraine", in the form it was established, after the collapse of the USSR, is UNSERVICEABLE.
We, representatives of the regions of the former "Ukraine", propose to re-establish the state and to proclaim the state of MALOROSSIYA, under historical background, out of the former "Ukraine". In this case, it is of fundamental importance to rename the country, since "Ukraine" as a state, is guilty of war crimes, mass terror and the genocide of its own people.
In turn, the new name of the country, based on historical traditions, will enable us to reunify those pieces of the former "Ukraine" that seemed to have parted ways forever, including because of participation in the civil war, on different sides of the front line.
We must turn the page of our people's history, which is flooded with the blood of our brothers and sisters.
Malorossiya is an INDEPENDENT, SOVEREIGN state, with a new name, a new flag, a new constitution, a new state structure, new principles of social and economic development, and new historical prospectives.
But this is NOT A REVOLUTION ! This is a return to history. This is a novelty that restores, not destroys.
In view of the economic plight of the country, the chaos & disintegration potential, and regarding the possibility of launching a "war of all against all", we consider it necessary to declare a state of emergency for the transition period – up to 3 years. During this time, the process of adoption of the new Constitution and the establishment of the rule of law, should be completed.
Under a state of emergency, a ban on the activities of political parties and foreign funds is to be introduced, & penalties for criminal offenses, especially against the person, are to be increased. The fight against corruption will be toughened, as well as the penalties for it.The shadow arms market is to be eliminated, including by registering weapons in accordance with the new law.
In the same period an investigation is to be carried out, with the involvement of foreign specialists –- from Russia, Belarus, the European Union –- into the crimes committed by the Maidan Kiev regime: the murders on the Maidan, the murder of Odessa citizens in the Trade Unions' House on May 2nd, 2014, and the war crimes in Donbass, in the so-called ATO.
In the same period, the People's Tribunal is to be prepared to charge the state criminals who have led the country into disintegration and civil war: V.F. Yanukovich (with a request to Russia for his extradition), P.A. Poroshenko and his clique: Turchinov, Yatsenyuk, Kolomoisky, Paruby, Nalivaichenko and others.
We are sure that, having recovered from the criminal neo-Nazi ideology of "Ukrainism", we will be able to build a new society on the basis of friendship and mutual assistance -- but not hatred and envy. The creative genius of our people will manage to bring Malorossiya to the forefront of global civilization and play a role in history. The role of Good, and Truth.
Official translation by the DONi Donbass News Agency, 07/18/2017
The West Refuses To Face Up To This Perverse Reality
Empowering the Saudi regime is the root cause of Islamist terrorism, says David Lowry
During his press conference with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Jerusalem last Tuesday, US President Donald Trump offered these words to the people of Manchester:
“I extend my deepest condolences to those so terribly injured in this terrorist attack, and to the many killed, and the families — so many families — of the victims.
“We stand in absolute solidarity with the people of the United Kingdom. So many young, beautiful, innocent people living and enjoying their lives, murdered by evil losers in life.
“The terrorists and extremists, and those who give them aid and comfort, must be driven out from our society forever. This wicked ideology must be obliterated — and I mean completely obliterated — and innocent life must be protected.”
3 days earlier, in Saudi Arabia’s capital city Riyadh, Trump signed off on a $110 billion sale of military equipment to Saudi Arabia - effective immediately - which could expand to $350 billion over 10 years.
The deal includes tanks, combat ships, missile defence systems, radar and communications, and cyber-security technology.
On the same day Trump, without any apparent irony, jointly established with the Saudis a new Global Centre for Combating Extremist Ideology.
He told political leaders at the Arab Islamic American Summit:“This groundbreaking new centre represents a clear declaration that Muslim-majority countries must take the lead in combating radicalisation, and I want to express our gratitude to King Salman for this strong demonstration of leadership.”
What is the Saudi record, in combating extremism?
In October 2014, Britain’s Major-General Jonathan Shaw (who retired as assistant chief of defence staff in 2012) told the Daily Telegraph that Qatar and Saudi Arabia were“primarily responsible for the rise of the extremist Islam that inspires [Isis] terrorists.”
The newspaper added that “the two Gulf states have spent billions of dollars on promoting a militant and proselytising interpretation of their faith derived from Abdul Wahhab, an 18th-century scholar, & based on the Salaf, or the original followers of the Prophet.”
General Shaw emphasised: “This is a time bomb that, under the guise of education, Wahhabi Salafism is igniting under the world, really. And it is funded by Saudi and Qatari money, and that must stop.”
He forcefully added that the UK and US air campaign against Isis would not “stop the support of people in Qatar & Saudi Arabia for this kind of activity,” stressing, “it’s missing the point.”
Nearly a year later, Mohammed bin Nawaf bin Abdulaziz, Saudi ambassador in London, disingenuously wrote in the Daily Telegraph: “Saudi Arabia has also had to contend with disingenuous allegations concerning the kingdom’s role in the war against terrorist groups such as so-called [Isis] and al-Qaida.
“The fact is that no nation is more invested in the struggle against extremism, than the kingdom, which remains the primary target of such organisations, even more so than Western nations.”
This naivety was also the line taken by foreign office minister Tobias Elwood, in a written answer to veteran Labour back- bench MP Paul Flynn in September 2015, when he asserted:
“We work closely with countries in the Gulf, including Saudi Arabia, to counter the threat from terrorists and extremists across the region.
“Saudi Arabia is a key partner on a broad range of counter terrorism questions. The Saudi government is acutely aware of the threat from terrorist groups such as al-Qaida and [Isis] to their own and global security, and have been at the fore- front of efforts to combat them.
“Saudi Arabia has a comprehensive set of laws in place to prevent terrorist financing, which we assess that it vigorously enforces.”
Saudi Arabia is a huge purchaser of British weapons, as well as US military hardware, in multi-billion pound deals.
Is this the reason ministers refuse to face up to the perverse reality of the Saudi support for terrorism, both against Iran- backed Shia muslims in Syria and Iraq, over the past decade, and innocent concert-goers in Manchester this week, when murderously attacked by an Isis- supporting suicide bomber, whose very ideology is exported from, and funded by, the Saudis?
Dr David Lowry is a senior research fellow for the Institute for Resource and Security Studies.
(This article appeared originally in the Morning Star)
Nato – A Dangerous Alliance May 24th
As Nato ends its summit in Brussels, Rae Street explains why the military alliance remains a threat to world peace
When the Warsaw Pact ended, after the collapse of communism, some optimists might have expected Nato to be broken up too. After all, the Labour Party in Britain had been opposed to Nato in the mid-1980s. But that was not to be. The US, which had always dominated Nato, quickly began to reinvent Nato and furthermore, to expand it.
Following the end of the Warsaw Pact many central and east European governments wanted to join Nato. This, of course, was music to the ears of the US military manufacturers. Indeed, the chair of the expand Nato committee, Bruce Jackson, was technical director of Lockheed Martin, the largest military manufacturer in the world. So, for the new Nato members because of the policy on “interoperability,” that is Nato personnel being able to use the same military equipment, it was out with the old Soviet military hard- ware and in with sales of, for example, Lockheed’s military aircraft ,costing millions of dollars.
This continues to this day in countries which can ill afford it, with struggling economies. The latter includes Greece. Think of the situation in Greece today.
Expanding Nato up to the borders with Russia, was a provocative policy. The dangers were pointed out but the military industrial complex and the “hawks” in the West, took no notice.
To this day, this helps President Vladimir Putin: more and more of the Russian people believe that “the West” is against them.
Decades later, we read: “British troops have arrived in Estonia, as part of a major Nato mission in the Baltic states, to deter Russian aggression.”
From the start, Nato has always held a nuclear armed policy. It continues to claim that nuclear weapons “preserve peace.” Manifestly, nuclear weapons do not deter conflict.
Governments, including Britain’s, now analyse the main threats to security as cyber warfare and terrorism. Remember September 11th 2001, when New York was attacked by terrorists in planes, brandishing knives?
The US then had and still has, 13 nuclear armed Trident submarines, of which several will be roaming the seas fully operational. Britain has four, with one constantly on alert at sea.
Were these any use in the madman’s attack on Westminster, or in any terrorist attacks?
Trident is “integrated” into Nato. Even worse, Nato still has a policy of “first use of nuclear weapons.”
When the then minister of defence, Geoff Hoon, was asked in Parliament why Britain has a policy of “first use,” he replied: “Because of our obligations to Nato.”
Under the direction of the US administration, with its policy of global domination, Nato has established a string of nuclear-armed bases across Europe, in Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Turkey, at Incirlik.
The latter is now causing deep problems as relations between President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the US become more and more fractious.
There is now a real problem for Nato, as Erdogan is a repressive dictator — how can Turkey remain in Nato?
Nato states are supposed to uphold principles of human rights and democracy, notably lacking in Turkey today.
The nuclear-armed bases come under Nato’s “nuclear sharing policy” — in effect a violation of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Nato continues to expand. The policy of not acting “out of area” was dropped long ago. “North Atlantic” simply means, a domination of policies by the US.
Nato claims in its “strategic concept” that “the promotion of Euro-Atlantic security is best assured through a wide network of partner relationships with countries and organisations around the globe.”
In 1994 Nato established the Partnerships for Peace across Europe, extending as far as Uzbekistan.
Nato surrounds Russia from the west and east. These Partnerships for Peace (note the language again) now include 22 states, including “neutral” Ireland.
Then there is the ''Mediterranean Dialogue,'' with ''arrangements'' with countries in the Middle East. Few people realise that Nato carries out military exercises with Israel.
Nato has also established bilateral relations — named individual partnerships — with Afghanistan, Australia, Iraq, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Mongolia, New Zealand and Pakistan.
In this part of the globe, where Nato carried out a military exercise in 2014 with Japan, named Ocean Shield, they are surrounding and menacing China, as the enemy.
Then there was the statement by Nato that “co-operation between Nato and the United Nations continues to make a substantial contribution to security in operations round the world.
“The alliance aims to deepen political dialogue and practical co-operation with the UN, as set out in the Nato/UN declaration, signed in 2008.”
This seems like Nato bidding to be the UN's military arm.
This hardly accords with the UN Charter. It was the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe, which was set up under Chapter VIII of the UN Charter, to prevent and resolve conflict by non-military means and to promote co-operation in humanitarian and other fields.
The 54 member states stretch from Iceland to Kyrgyzstan and include Russia. Alas, how many times do you read of their work in the press, compared with the times you hear about Nato?
Nato is sold to us as a peace-making body. After all, the US is home to the finest PR companies in the world.
Do not be misled by Donald Trump’s condemnation of Nato. It is not the policies he is condemning. He himself wants more nuclear weapons in the world, though one wonders if he can comprehend the horror of what happened when the US dropped nuclear bombs.
And to her shame, Theresa May has also said she would press the nuclear button and so has shadow defence secretary Nia Griffith.
Trump just wants more money for war as we saw when he announced a $54 billion increase to the military budget — while thousands in the US live below the poverty line.
To summarise, Nato is pursuing yet more militarism and war:
- All Nato states are required to increase their military budgets to 2 per cent of GDP. That means stealing more money from social needs. Readers of the Morning Star know those all too well: the NHS, education, adult social services; the list is endless.
- Nato member states will have to spend 20 per cent of defence budgets on military equipment: warships, war planes, drones, bombs. By fuelling the arms race, Nato makes a mockery of moves for conflict resolution.
- Nato and its member states multiply interventions outside their territory and increase their presence through world- wide partnerships and “coalitions of the willing.”
- Nato extends its nuclear policies as a supreme “guarantee for the allies’ security,” notwithstanding that the majority of countries in the world are negotiating a treaty to ban nuclear weapons. In the meantime, nuclear weapons in Europe — under the guise of Nato — and elsewhere, are being modernised at a cost of many tens of billions of dollars and pounds. Think of Trident at a cost of £205 billion.
The Nato summit will be held tomorrow in Brussels and activists will be holding a “counter-summit” starting today, with protesters organising workshops and a demonstration. CND activists will be there from the UK, but we also need people to raise the issues with their MPs, write letters to the press and raise awareness on social media.
Let’s put pressure on the government to invest in social welfare, not Nato, not war.
US Navy Prepares Decapitating Attack Against Russia Alex Gorka 27.03.2017
The US preemptive nuclear strike capability has significantly grown. The strategic nuclear forces modernization program has implemented new revolutionary technologies to vastly increase the targeting capability of the US submarine- launched ballistic missile (SLBM) arsenal.
The Bulletin of American Scientists reports that as a result of improvements in the killing power of US SLBMs, they carry more than three times the number of warheads needed to destroy the entire fleet of Russian land-based missiles.
Since only part of the W76 force would be needed to eliminate Russia’s silo-based ICBMs, the US will be left with a substantial number of higher-yield war- heads, that could be used for other missions.
The increase in the lethality comes from the Mk4A «super- fuze» device that since 2009 has been incorporated into the Navy’s W76-1/Mk4A warhead, as part of a decade- long life-extension program.
The super-fuze capability is now operational on all nuclear warheads deployed on the Navy’s Ohio-class ballistic missile submarines. The new fuze has also been installed on British SLBMs.
It provides for an adjustable height-of-burst as it arrives. The fuze is designed to destroy fixed hard targets by detonating above and around a target, in a much more effective way. Warheads that would otherwise overfly a target and land too far away will now, because of the new fuzing system, detonate above the target. Explosions that occur near and above the ground over a target can be lethal to it. This above-target area is known as a «lethal volume»; the detonation of a warhead of appropriate yield in this volume, will result in the destruction of the target. The result of this fuzing scheme is a significant increase in the probability that a warhead will explode close enough to destroy the target, even though the accuracy of the missile-warhead system has itself not improved. Thus, an enhanced fuze would allow the United States to reduce the number of warheads on its ballistic missile submarines, but increase the targeting effectiveness of the fleet.
It’s worth mentioning, that, in addition to hundreds of W76-1/Mk4A warheads with a 100kiloton warhead that have a very high probability of destroying fixed silos, Navy submarines also carry the 455kiloton W88 Mk-5 that can destroy extremely hard and deeply buried targets, such as military command centres.
According to Hans Kristiansen, the director of the Nuclear Information Project at the Federation of American Scientists, «As a consequence, the US submarine force today is much more capable than it was previously, against hardened targets such as Russian ICBM silos. A decade ago, only about 20% of US submarine warheads had hard-target kill capability; today they all do».
It should be noted that the US has always enjoyed significant advantage in sea-based nuclear forces. Together, the Ohio- class submarines carry approximately 60% of US strategic nuclear warheads. The Navy has been constantly upgrading its Trident missiles. Additionally, a new submarine, the SSBN(X), which will replace the Ohio-class ballistic missile submarines, is undergoing development and is expected to cost about $140 billion to develop, according to the Defense Department.
Under the circumstances, Russia has the right to invoke Article VIII of the New START treaty, which provides that in those cases in which one of the Parties determines that its actions may lead to an ambiguous situation, that Party is to take measures to ensure the viability and effectiveness of this Treaty and to enhance confidence, openness, and predictability concerning the reduction and limitation of strategic offensive arms. Such measures may include, among other things, providing information in advance on activities of that Party associated with deployment or increased readiness of strategic offensive arms to preclude the possibility of misinterpretation of its actions by the other Party. This information is to be provided through diplomatic or other channels.
The enhanced capability could be used only against land- based targets, leaving SSBNs immune, at least those on patrol. Train-based systems have a good chance to survive and strike back. The super fuze does not eliminate the capability to deliver a retaliatory strike. What really matters is the fact that the US does not view the strategic potential as a deterrent but rather as a means to deliver the first strike: reducing the opponent’s capability to respond.
The background also matters. While blaming Russia for starting an arms race, the US beefs up its nuclear potential. The US Air Force is modernizing the Minuteman-III missiles, replacing and upgrading their rocket motors, guidance systems, and other components, so that they can remain in the US' force through 2030. The service released a new ICBM solicitation last July. It plans to build a new weapons system to replace the long-serving Minuteman, under a program called the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent (GBSD). The US Defense Department plans to buy 642 GBSD missiles for roughly $66.4 million each to support a deployed force of 400 weapons and to budget at least $1.25 billion, annually, from 2036 to 2040. The goal is to deliver the first batch of new missiles by 2029.
In 2023, the USAF will receive the B61 Mod 12 guided, stand- off nuclear gravity bomb to replace all existing gravity bombs in the arsenal. The weapon with earth-penetrating capability and selectable yield from 50 kilotons to 0.3 kilotons, will be carried by both strategic and tactical stealth aircraft. The planned deployment foresees that other NATO members would use their aircraft as delivery means in violation of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) of 1968 that forbids non-nuclear states from receiving nuclear weapons.
In the late 2020s and through the 2030s the Air Force will begin receiving the first of 100 new B-21 strategic stealth bombers.
The Long-Range Standoff (LRSO) cruise missile program is to develop a weapon that can penetrate and survive integrated air defense systems and prosecute strategic targets. Both conventional and nuclear versions of the weapon are required to reach initial operational capability (IOC) before the retirement of their respective ALCM versions, around 2030.
According to the plans, the LRSO will replace the Air- Launched Cruise Missile (ALCM) program with 1,000 to 1,100 cruise missiles, representing the US Air Force’s standoff nuclear delivery capability.
The US implements an ambitious program of putting weapons in space. It includes the concept of «Rods of God» – secret space weapons deployed on orbital kinetic weapon platform that could achieve a velocity of about 11 km/s (around 36,000 feet per second). The ground-based BMD systems, the X-37B spacecraft and Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program (GSSAP) platforms, could be repurposed into instruments of war in space.
The US goals have been strictly defined. According to White House spokesman Sean Spicer, what the president «was very clear on, is that the US will not yield its supremacy in this area to anybody. That's what he made very clear in there. And that, if other countries have nuclear capabilities, it will always be the US that has the supremacy and commitment to this».
President Donald Trump is critical toward the New START Treaty, calling it «a one-sided deal. «Just another bad deal that the country made, whether it's START, whether it's the Iran deal ... We're going to start making good deals», he stated.
Expanding the US arsenal with new or additional nuclear weapons would cost billions at the time the national debt is nearing $20 trillion, while the New START allows the US to keep enough nuclear weapons to destroy the planet several times over. Without the New START and other arms control agreements, like the INF Treaty, the US will be compelled to waste enormous military and financial resources on a nuclear arms race.
The US is doing its best to gain supremacy in nuclear weapons. This policy may lead to total disintegration of the existing framework of treaties and regimes, followed by resumption of an arms race with dire consequences for the US itself.
With all the efforts on the way, there is little doubt about Russia’s ability to survive a first nuclear strike, and respond in kind.
Without violating the New START, the upgrade of the W76 warheads undermines future efforts to negotiate a New START treaty.
As history teaches, an arms race will never make anybody victorious. Nobody gains, everybody loses. It took a series of risky crises, like the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, and several cycles of an extremely costly arms race to realize how dangerous the nuclear threat is. The history of arms control reveals the wisdom of Soviet (Russian) and US leaders finding ways to cap their arsenals, even in the heat of the Cold War. Now all the efforts applied in the past, may go down the drain, as the US is going back to the once tried policy of seeking nuclear dominance. Now it starts again, at a time that the whole system of arms control, is on the brink of collapse.The tide must be turned. Nuclear arms control treaties should have become a top priority of the bilateral relationship.
(source - Strategic Culture.org)
Nuclear War - Vows Broken
Jonathan Marshall is author of many recent articles on arms issues, including “How World War III Could Start,” “NATO’s ProvocativeAnti-Russian Moves,” “Escalations in a New Cold War,” “Ticking Closer to Midnight,” and “Turkey’s Nukes: A Sum of All Fears.”
A petition by Ploughshares Fund says: “President Trump could launch 140 warheads in the time it takes to write 140 characters. The grave difference is: a tweet can be deleted, but the devastation of a nuclear warhead can never be undone.”
Experts estimate that about 1,000 US nuclear warheads are currently set to launch within minutes of a presidential order to vaporize an enemy.
As Ploughshares Fund President Joe Cirincione observes, “Each is many times the size of the bombs we dropped on Japan. Together, they can detonate... the equivalent of 22,000 Hiroshima’s on cities all over the planet. In just 30 minutes, they could destroy all that human civilization has created over the millennia.”
Today, many, if not most, nuclear experts agree that keeping nuclear weapons on hair-trigger alert, greatly degrades the security of Russia & the US, by raising the chance of leaders on either side ordering a missile launch on the basis of accidents or false warnings, after only a few minutes of hasty consideration.
Surely deciding the fate of human civilization deserves a little more time than that.
In a talk last year at Stanford University, former Secretary of Defense William Perry said the US had received at least three false alarms of a Soviet nuclear attack, and “we know of at least 2 (false alarms) in the Soviet Union.” He thanked “good luck” for avoiding the destruction of humankind in a nuclear war.
The US nuclear warning systems have been accidentally tripped by a defective computer chip and computer confusion of a war game with the real thing. Soviet nuclear forces went on high alert when a glint of sunlight confused an early-warning satellite, and when radar systems identified a Norwegian weather rocket as an incoming U.S. missile.
Concern over the risk of accidental nuclear annihilation has prompted creation of detailed blueprints for transitioning U.S. and Russian nuclear forces to lower alert levels, several resolutions by the U.N. General Assembly, and bipartisan calls at home for action.
During his 2000 run for the presidency, George W. Bush said, “the US should remove as many weapons as possible from high-alert, hair- trigger status: another unnecessary vestige of Cold War confrontation. Preparation for a quick launch — within minutes after warning of an attack — was the rule during the era of superpower rivalry. But today, for two nations at peace, keeping so many weapons on high alert may create unacceptable risks of accidental or unauthorized launch.”
Eight years later, presidential candidate Obama declared, “Keeping nuclear weapons ready to launch on a moment’s notice, is a dangerous relic of the Cold War. Such policies increase the risk of catastrophic accidents, or miscalculation. I believe that we must address this dangerous situation — something President Bush vowed to do when he campaigned for president back in 2000, but did not do once in office.”
Unfortunately, President Obama also did nothing once in office, & the downward spiral of his relations with Russia did nothing to enlighten the Kremlin’s own attitudes on the issue, either.
According to Princeton University expert Bruce Blair, Russian leaders now fear that US weapons based in Eastern Europe could reach Moscow in a matter of minutes, wiping out “the Kremlin in a flash without warning, along with key Russian installations in its nuclear command, control, communications and early warning network.”
As a result, Blair reported, Russia has actually “shortened the launch time from what it was during the Cold War,” to just four minutes.
“Today, top military command posts in the Moscow area can bypass the entire human chain of command & directly fire by remote control, rockets in silos and on trucks, as far away as Siberia, in only 20 seconds. This situation is a mistaken launch waiting to happen.”
President Trump has said (or tweeted) nought to show that he appreciates the problem. The good news is, his nominee as Secretary of Defense, General James Mattis, offered cogent remarks last year to a Senate Armed Services Committee, about revamping US nuclear forces to “reduce the false alarm danger.” Former Secretary Perry has also confirmed that Mattis is “a very serious thinker” on nuclear issues.
Speaking last year, Retired Gen. Eugene Habiger, the former Commander in Chief of U.S. Strategic Command, said, “We need to bring the alert status down of our ICBMs... It’s one of those things where the services are not gonna do anything, until the Big Kahuna says,‘Take your missiles off alert,’ and then by golly within hours, the missiles and subs will be off alert.”
The question now, is whether President Donald Trump's much-vaunted volatility means we must all pray for deliverance.
[For more on this, see Consortiumnews.com’s “Summing Up Russia’s Real Nuclear Fears.”]
(source - Strategic Culture Foundation)
New York Times Continues Lying About Ukraine by Eric Zuesse 02/01/2017
The New York Times’s hiding — for nearly three years after this massively important historical event — the U.S.-imposed bloody coup that occurred in Ukraine during February 2014, makes the Times’s hiding of it from the public, become by now no longer merely egregious ‘news’-reporting, but finally lying about history: it’s an egregious lie about a major event of recent world history — a worse lie as each year passes without the Times’s acknowledgment that they'd been hiding it from their readers, all along; hiding news, until it became history — a lie which is harder to extricate themselves from as each year passes and as this event becomes more and more important, because it accumulates more and more consequences, all of which are bad.
So: when will the NYT finally come out publicly and acknowledge that the coup existed --- that it was a ''coup'', and no ‘revolution’ (such as they’ve falsely claimed it to have been, and still refer to it)? Will it remain unstated (to have been a coup), until decades later?
This was historically a very important event, because it directly precipitated America’s pretext for openly restoring the Cold War - 25 years after the 1991 end of the Soviet Union, and of its Warsaw Pact military alliance & of their communism. The U.S. sanctions against Russia, and NATO’s pouring troops and weapons onto and near Russia’s borders, were hostile U.S. & European acts carried out under the shoddy pretext of Russia’s having accepted the will of the residents in Crimea — which had been part of Russia for hundreds of years until a Soviet dictator arbitrarily transferred Crimea to Ukraine in 1954 — to become again part of Russia, which rejoining of Russia was precipitated (virtually forced) by Obama’s coup, the coup that overthrew the Ukrainian President, for whom, 75% of Crimeans, had voted.
Obama never gave a damn about what the people of Crimea wanted. (Perhaps that’s why Crimeans’ approval of the U.S.’s role in Ukrainian affairs, which was 6% before the coup, plunged to 2.8% after the coup - according to Gallup.)
The master-liar Obama called this Putin’s ''conquest'' of Crimea, but Obama never questioned, much less denied (as he does to the Crimean people) the right of self-determination of peoples, in regards to the Catalonians in Spain, nor to the Scottish in the UK. But when it happens in a former part of Russia, as a direct consequence of Obama’s own conquest of Russia’s next-door-neighbour Ukraine (like Mexico is to the U.S.), Obama exhibited the audacity to call it Putin’s ''conquest of land'', and to say that Russia must suffer for it.
Obama should have been prosecuted for it --- (and for the even bloodier consequences of his coup), by the International Criminal Court, but instead he ‘prosecuted’ (actually persecuted) Russia. What type of world is this?
That the coup was a bloody false-flag U.S. coup, was obvious to Petro Poroshenko (subsequently to become Ukraine’s President, and commanded by Obama) even as early as when the coup had ended, on February 26, 2014 - and Poroshenko acknowledged it at that time, to the European Union’s investigator, who had been sent in to find out how this blatantly illegal overthrow of Ukraine’s democratically elected President, had, in fact, occurred.
As the head of the ‘private CIA’ firm Stratfor himself, on 19 December 2014, called this overthrow, it was ''the most blatant coup in history'' - and the reason why it was so, is that, because of the widespread new cellphone technology, this was the first coup to have been extensively recorded and uploaded to the internet -- even while it was happening. A compendium of these videos was uploaded to youtube on 18 March 2014 (just weeks after the coup), which gave the world virtually a ringside seat to the coup's unfolding; and subsequently more and more details on the coup’s background became revealed, & an 80-page scholarly analysis of all the evidence regarding the moment of the coup itself, ''The ‘Snipers’ Massacre’ on the Maidan in Ukraine'', confirmed that the massacre - the coup event - was perpetrated by the same group that organized & commanded the mass-demonstrations against the democratically elected President, Viktor Yanukovych (and the U.S. preparations for it went back to at least 1 March 2013, and the advance- planning for it was done by the U.S. State Dept., at least as far back as 2011); so, one would have to be an imbecile to question any longer that it was a ''coup'' - at least as much of a ''coup'' as America’s previous coups, such as when the U.S. government did it to Iran in 1953, and to Guatemala in 1954, and to Chile in 1973 - and to so many others. (Of course, those coups too were denied by U.S. ‘news’ media at the time, and for a long time afterward.)
And anyone who would deny that it was a U.S.-run coup would be disproven by the smoking-gun on the matter, which was the youtubed phone-conversation on 4 February 2014 — 18 days prior to the coup’s culminating event — in which Arseniy Yatsenyuk was chosen by Obama’s agent Victoria Nuland to run the Ukraine government, as soon as the coup was completed (this happened on February 26th). Nuland was there telling the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, whom he should place in charge of Ukraine, after the democratically elected President was ''gone''.
It’s one thing to perpetrate a coup; but it’s entirely something else then to punish the target — which typically is the leader (such as Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi, Viktor Yanukovych, & Bashar al-Assad) of a nation who is friendly toward Russia, because Washington’s permanent obsession is to weaken Russia; Russia itself was the real target in perpetrating Ukraine’s coup — as Obama and his European vassals did, by punishing Russia for responding to that coup on its very doorstep and taking its necessary defensive measures against America’s aggression, especially in light of Ukraine’s having been told by Obama’s gang, that it should apply for NATO membership — which Ukraine did.
It is all covered-up with lies. When will this scam against the US public, by the US ‘press’, ever end? How can a country with such rotten ‘news’ media - keeping things like this secret from the American people - be a truly authentic democracy? It can’t. And it isn’t.
Even Russia’s news media play-down the extent and significance of this problem. Russian Television published, on December 27th, an opinion-article, by a non-staff writer, headlined ''New York Times admits Ukraine’s Yanukovich was right not to sign EU deal'', which merely argued that Ukraine’s having rejected Russia’s offer and gone with the EU’s offer (the offer from America’s vassal-aristocracies across the Atlantic) has harmed Ukraine’s farmers. This article simply ignored the crucial fact: that Yanukovych had turned down the EU’s proposed terms for Ukraine to join the EU, because of its cripplingly-high price-tag: $160 billion.
But actually, America’s coup in Ukraine did a lot worse to Ukraine than just harm to Ukrainian agriculture.
I headlined on 23 December 2015, ''Gallup: Ukrainians Loathe the Government that Obama Imposed'', and reported that that day’s Gallup poll report showed that ''17% approve of the job-performance of their President, Petro Poroshenko. While the pre-coup President, Viktor Yanukovych, was in office, 2010-2014, that figure had been averaging about 23%, and was never as low as Poroshenko’s is now.''
Subsequently, polling by Ukraine’s Sofia Centre for Social Studies (for example, in November 2016, and also in September 2016) showed similarly low approval-ratings for the Obama-stooge regime. And all these polls -- Gallup’s and Sofia’s -- excluded the two breakaway regions, one of which (Donbass) had voted 90% for Yanukovych, and the other of which (Crimea) had voted 75% for him, both of which knew the Obama-stooge regime only as bombing them, and so would have had 0% approval for its current leader Poroshenko.
In other words, even without the two most pro- Russian, anti-U.S., regions, being reflected in the post-coup polls, the approval-rating for the U.S.- stooge regime, within the more-pro-U.S. part of the remaining rump Ukraine, was even lower than the lowest-ever approval-rating for the Yanukovych government had been, over all of Ukraine.
Obama - and his vassal-aristocracies in Europe & elsewhere - has imposed economic sanctions against Russia, for Russia’s having allowed the people of Crimea to rejoin Russia, after the hell that Obama’s team had imposed upon Ukraine.
Obama called it Russia’s ‘conquest’ of Crimea.
Who's the liar here? Is it the U.S. regime and its propaganda-organs?
Or is it the Russian government?
In a brilliant summary by Paul Craig Roberts, published on December 28th, and titled ''What Is Henry Kissinger Up To?'' is stated the forces that are still trying, inside the United States, to conquer & subdue America’s next President, Donald Trump. But all of this is really about whether the plan that George Herbert Walker Bush initiated on the night of 24 February 1990, for the US aristocracy to take over Russia, will now -- and finally -- end. No one can understand current history, without under- standing that plan:- the U.S. aristocracy’s double-cross of Russia, which left only a one-sided (Russian) end of the Cold War, while the other side (America’s side) continued it, sub-rosa, right up until the present.
The NYT’s lies are in service to the forces that are still trying to continue - and to intensify - the Cold War. And Paul Craig Roberts stated accurately whom those forces actually represent. It’s not the American public.
Legendary memorial at Saur-Tomb ''restored by May 2017''
DPR authorities have finished restoring the Saur-Tomb by May 2017. It was announced by the Building Minister, Sergey Naymets.
‘Saur Tomb has been being restored since November, and we planned to finish this by May 2017’, the Minister said.
He said "many people contributed to this project of restoration of the memorial damaged by shelling," Naumets noted.
Broken Dreams: the EU shows Ukraine the door
Ukraine will not receive any military assistance or additional funding from the European Union, nor will its citizens gain the right to reside and work in the EU. This decision was made during the EU summit dedicated to the Ukrainian issue. Kiev should also forget about its candidate status for EU membership.
The EU doesn’t need Kiev
These listed points were already in the works before this summit. The EU didn't ban anything new, but merely formulated such in plain text and wrote everything into the document of the Association Agreement. In other words, if Kiev wants to destroy the remnants of its economy for the sake of Europe, it’s welcome to. However, no additional preferences should be expected from the European side.
The Trump effect
In fact, the Brussels bureaucracy is part of the globalist “swamp” and cannot openly state that they do not need Ukraine. At the same time, Trump’s victory and the ongoing reformatting of the world system can only mean one thing: the US will leave Ukraine, letting the countries of the Russian World themselves deal with this situation. This will inevitably lead to the overthrow of the Kiev regime and the normalization of the situation. Ukraine in its present configuration is living out its last months.
Ukraine's European integration project was the main slogan of Poroshenko’s Maidan and the main goal of his administration. The fact that Europe has shown Kiev the door, says that there is no need for the population to suffer any more at the current authorities' hands, now that they have finally destroyed the country's economy and social sphere. Ukraine is among the poorest countries of the continent. Even today, the elites are trying to persuade Washington to appoint a new president of Ukraine, but the old US administration can't do this, and the new one doesn't even want to.
(source - Katehon)
It Begins: Flash Mobs Singing IN RUSSIAN Popping Up All Over East Ukraine
Ukraine and Russia may have been split by a CIA/Soros/Obama coup, but Zaporozhye in South central Ukraine, a long way from independent Donbass and living under a neofascist regime which "disappears" dissenters, still sing their hearts out --- as all over Russia and Ukraine 'Flash Mobs' say 'hello' to each other!
A prediction: The 'Trump effect' now sweeping Western Europe, will see the neocon-backed "government" in Kiev, swept out of most of Russian-speaking Ukraine, within a year.
The Nazis will keep the Western provinces, while the bulk of the country, including quite possibly the old Russian capital Kiev, will return to friendly relations with their fellow countrymen in Russia.
[Eng Subs] Children of Donbass, "Toys for Poroshenko" Music Video by Artem Grishanov
POWERFUL - PUT THIS ON HEADPHONES. I guarantee you will cry - and if you don't - please seek psychiatric help.
In 2017 in the Donbass - give the childrenPeace!
Ethnic Ruthenes of sub-Carpathian Ukraine demand autonomy December 23, 2:22
Activists of a Slavic ethnic group known as Ruthenes -- or Rusyns -- who reside in the Trans-Carpathian (sub-Carpathian) region of Ukraine, have turned to President Pyotr Poroshenko with a demand:
recognize the results of 1991's regional referendum --- when 78% of the region's residents, voted in favor of granting it the status of a self-governing region.
"We have two main demands - to recognize the Rhuthenes as an ethnos and to acknowledge the regional referendum of 1991, where 78% sub-Carpathians voted for the region being a self-governed territory within Ukraine," Vesti quoted Ivan Palinkash, the leader of the Ruthene movement & a member of the People’s Council's presidium of Sub-Carpathian Ruthenes.
Natalya Magalina, a deputy of Uzhgorod district council, told the meeting of leaders of Ruthene ethnic organizations it is important to maintain the Ruthene language by establishing minimal norms for broadcasting in the native tongue, over the state regional TV Channel Tisa-1.
This isn't the first time that the Ruthenes of the sub- Carpathian area have asked the Kiev government to recognize the outcome of the referendum held 25 years ago. The Coordination Council of Ruthene Organizations of the Trans-Carpathian Region turned to the central authorities with the same requirement, the previous time, in the summer of 2015.
It was also in the summer of 2015 that the activists of Ruthene organizations adopted an appeal to the Council of Europe, the European Commission, the Organization for Security & Cooperation in Europe & the UN, as well as to the parliaments of Hungary, the Czech Republic, & Slovakia, to wield pressure on President Poroshenko and force the Ukrainian government towards accepting the result of their referendum.
The Ruthenes are an indigenous sub-Carpathian people. Ukrainian authorities do not consider them to be a separate ethnos, and continue calling them Ukrainians, although the UN has issued recommendations more than once, to recognize their status as a separate ethnos.
More than that, Kiev accuses the leaders of Ruthene organizations of making appeals for encroachments on the territorial integrity of the country.
(source - TASS)
Zionist lobby preventing West from criticizing Israel: Analyst Fri Dec 16, 2016
The European Union has censured the Israeli regime for destroying Palestinian shelters and structures in the occupied territories. According to a statement by the European bloc, the Tel Aviv regime has demolished 866 structures so far in 2016 in Area C of the West Bank, which is under full Israeli military control.
Anthony Hall, editor-in-chief of the American Herald Tribune from Alberta, says that the European states have been under the influence of the Zionist lobby to go along with Israeli interests - and thus refuse to slam crimes against the Palestinian people.
“Every government within the EU has a very strong Israeli lobby, and this is one of the dilemmas that the Western people are facing,”Hall explained.
“Not only the governing parties but the opposition parties as well, are constraining discussion and discourse within a very narrow range, that puts Israeli priorities at the top of the list in all our Western countries,”he added.
The professor also called on Western citizens to“intervene directly and make contact with the Palestinian people, directly.”
“We, as the citizens in the EU, citizens in Canada, & citizens in the US, have to find ways to bypass the constraints of our governments & the biases and power of this lobby over our governments,” he noted.
Hall criticized the EU for its forensic accounting of homes demolished in Palestine.
“This type of numerical accounting fails to really describe the nature of this destruction of homes in its broader context ------ where thousands of Palestinian people are in dungeons and being tortured in Israeli incarceration facilities,” he said.
“The reality: that the world is letting this happen is very discouraging,” he added.
Hall warned that the prospect of a Palestinian state is no longer viable, given the emphasis on building up settlements, and destroying the structures of the indigenous people of Palestine.
"This goes beyond apartheid,” he said.
The Israeli policy of demolishing houses in the West Bank to build illegal settler units has affected 5,704 Palestinians, of whom, 1,221 have been rendered homeless, including 586 children.
(source - PressTv)
UN Adopts"Paper Tiger" Resolution, on Israel's Withdrawal from the Syrian Golan
Fahwad Al-Khadoumi -The UN General Assembly adopted yet another resolution demanding that Israel withdraw from the occupied Syrian Golan Heights, in line with a resolution of June 4, 1967.
However, UN General Assembly resolutions are non-binding and no more than a paper tiger, with- out a unanimous decision by the permanent UN Security Council members, to enforce them; A highly unlikely prospect.
In its latest resolution, the UN General Assembly again condemned Israel's non-compliance with UN Security Council Resolution 497 (1981). The General Assembly reiterated that Israel's decision from December 14th, 1981, to impose Israeli laws, administration & custody on the occupied Syrian Golan Heights, is null and void -- and has no legality at all.
The latest UNGA resolution was adopted by an overwhelming majority of UN member States. The resolution reaffirmed the illegality of acquiring territories through the use of military force. The General Assembly also repeated that Israel's continued occupation & enforcement of Israeli law & administration violates international law, the UN Charter, & the Geneva Convention's principles on the protection of civilians during war.
During the UNGA session, a number of states condemned the Israeli practices in occupied Syrian Golan, calling on Israel to withdraw from Golan, in line with June 4th, 1967.
37 states proposed the now adopted draft resolution. However, UNGA resolutions are non-binding and no more than a paper tiger, unless permanent Security Council members are willing to put their money where their mouth was, when they adopted UNSC Resolution 497 (1981) - decades ago.
Moreover, none of the permanent UNSC members - China, France, Russia, the UK and the US - took any tangible steps when the now former Israeli Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman, defiantly declared that "Israel and the Golan are part and parcel" and that "the international community should get used to facing the fact that Israel will permanently annex the Syrian territory".
Most favourite scapegoat
The favorite scapegoat among permanent UNSC members, with regard to supporting Israel and neglecting Israel's illegal occupation of Golan is the US. However, Russia is in no way more actively pursuing Israel's adherence with UNSC Resolution 497 (1981) than any other of the self-anointed permanent UNSC members. In April 2016, Russia and Russian President Vladimir Putin, were ominously silent about the Golan when Israeli PM, Benjamin Netanyahu, visited Moscow.
Russia failed to respond to what Netanyahu had declared "a red line" - occupation of the Golan.
A brief review of recent history pertaining to the Israeli occupation, international affairs & Israel's use of the Golan to wage war on Syria, suffices to show that the UN System has failed, utterly, and that it is perverted to the point that many analysts call for abolishing the UN altogether.
In June 2013 an Austrian UN Disengagement & Observer Force (UNDOF) officer told the press that Israel is running a joint operations room with the insurgents in Syria in the Golan.The UNSC failed to respond and more importantly, failed to take action. In July 2013, the Syrian permanent representative to the UN in Geneva, Dr. Fayssal al-Hamwi, noted how Israel, since it occupied the Syrian Golan Heights in 1967, has displaced about half a million of the Golan´s original inhabitants.
Also in Feb. 2014, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu preempted a public relations quagmire by visiting a field hospital for "Syrian Freedom Fighters" in the Golan to show how much Israel cares and does, on the humanitarian front. It turned out that the "Freedom Fighters" belonged to the Syrian Al-Qaeda franchise, Jabhat al-Nusra.
In March 2014, Israel launched one of many military attacks against Syrian military and security forces, from the Golan, while the UNSC and most media were "silent".
In April 2014 The Director of Israel's Military Intelligence, Brigadier General Aviv Kochavi, a protegé of the now deceased Ariel Sharon, was appointed to head the Israeli Defense Forces Northern Command.
NSNBC international editor-in-chief, Christof Lehmann, reported that the appointment of Kochavi, indicated that Israel was planning large-scale military operations via the Golan in the near future and the widening of the Syria war. Lehmann was right on the money.
In May 2014 Israel denied Syrians in Golan the right to participate in Syrian elections. The UN was "silent". In mid-April 2016, ahead of talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu affirmed that Israel would hold on to the Golan.
A UNDOF withdrawal has left a 12-16 km wide corridor uncontrolled by the UNDOF... In 2013, it transpired that Israel was giving support to Jabhat al-Nusrah, such as a joint intelligence and military operations room in the Israeli occupied Golan, plus logistical support, weapons, field hospitals, and direct combat support.
In September 2014, Israeli machinations, resulted in the displacement of UNDOF troops from a 12-16 kilometer-wide corridor in the disengagement zone in the Golan by Jabhat Al-Nusra.. The corridor has since been used to supply Al-Nusra and the other terrorists and to launch attacks against Syria.
All permanent UNSC members with the exception of Russia were "silent". Russian diplomats tentatively spoke out against terminating the peace keeping mission in the Golan. The UNSC failed to act.
In 2015 it came out that Israel planned a major hydrocarbon extraction project in the Golan. Partners in crime include Genier Energy.
On the board of directors? Dick Cheney, James Woolsey, Bill Richardson, Jacob Lord Rothschild, Rupert Murdoch, Larry Summers and Michael Steinhardt, among others. Other players involved include the Israeli subsidiary, Afek Oil and Gas, American Shale, French Total and BP. Thus, there exists a broad and powerful nexus of US, British, French and Israeli interests: at the forefront of pushing for the break-up of Syria and control of what's believed to be potentially vast untapped oil and gas resources in the country.
On April 20th, 2016, NSNBC international editor- in-chief Christof Lehmann, said Netanyahu's "Red Line" would be a litmus test for Russia, as a permanent UNSC member. On April 21st, after talks between Netanyahu and Putin in Moscow, it could be concluded that Russia failed -- spectacularly.
In September 2016, Israel started a wave of home demolitions in the Golan. The UNSC was "silent".
In October 2016, Israel announced plans to build 1,600 settlement units in the Golan, & none of the permanent UNSC members took any action.
So much for the latest UN General Assembly paper tiger.
The Labour rebels who didn’t back the Yemen vote have blood on their hands by David Wearing
Presenting the motion in the Commons, Thornberry was subjected to a series of ill-judged interruptions by Labour MPs such as Kevan Jones, Toby Perkins and John Woodcock. Indeed, Thornberry received more vocal support in the chamber from the SNP group than from her own supposed comrades.
According to subsequent reports, some Labour members even tried to work with their Tory counterparts, in order to defeat their own party’s motion.
Woodcock, a former Progress chair, claimed that British support is “precisely focused on training the Saudis” to improve their targeting - so as to “create fewer civilian casualties” - parroting the official government line. The idea that the Saudis’ “widespread & systematic” attacks on civilian targets are just a series of well- meaning errors, is one that, to put it as gently as possible, lacks credibility.
And if decades of training provided by the British to the Saudi pilots hasn’t prevented these supposed errors by now --- it seems rather unlikely that it will in the near future.
In any case, this misrepresents the true nature of the UK's role. When the intervention began, the foreign secretary Philip Hammond, vowed to “support the Saudis in every practical way short of engaging in combat”, including “spare parts, maintenance, technical advice, resupply” and “logistical support”. The reality is that the Saudi Air Force, roughly half UK-supplied and half US-supplied jets, could barely function, without this ongoing assistance from Washington and London.
If there is Yemeni blood on the hands of the Saudi-led coalition, then that blood is also on the hands of the coalition’s western backers, enablers and apologists.
The Saudis and their allies can only wage this war because the Anglo-American suppliers of their air forces are providing active, material support. And British and American politicians can only collude in these outrages, because the political cost on them, so far, has been low. However, it is in the gift of their constituents – you, the reader – to change that equation.
(source - The Guardian)
This could be defeated --- with a UNITED LABOUR PARTY !!!
But unfortunately, there are "entryist" MPs who, for decades, have been groomed by CIA cold war relic organisations -- like the Atlantic Council -- and are now trying to misdirect the Labour Party towards cuts, a militarised police, and a US war agenda... and their anti-Corbyn MPs are hobbling Labour.
129 Labour MPs voted to stop support for Saudi Arabia’s campaign in Yemen. The vote was defeated by a majority of 90.
The motion called for support to be withdrawn from the Saudi government until a United Nations investigation could determine whether the Saudi bombing campaign had breached international law. The motion did not explicitly include a suspension of UK arms sales.
100+ Labour MPs didn't vote on the motion. If all of them had voted to support it, the government would have been defeated.
The following, are those Labour MPs who abstained or weren't present for the vote.
Adrian Bailey Andy Burnham Angela Eagle Angela Smith Ann Clwyd Ann Coffey Anna Turley Barry Sheerman Ben Bradshaw Bridgit Phillipson Caroline Flint Catherine McKinnell Chris Bryant Chris Elmore (Teller) Chris Evans Chris Leslie Clive Lewis (ill) Connor McGinn Dan Jarvis David Crausby David Lammy Diana Johnson Fiona MacTaggart Frank Field Gareth Thomas Gavin Shuker Geoffrey Robinson George Howarth Gerald Kaufman Gill Furniss Gisela Stuart Gloria De Piero Graeme Jones Graham Allen Graham Stringer Heidi Alexander Helen Jones Ian Austin Ian Murray Ivan Lewis Jamie Reed Jim Fitzpatrick Joan Ryan John Mann John Spellar John Woodcock Judith Cummins (Teller) Julie Elliott Kate Hoey Keith Vaz Kevan Jones Kevin Barron Liz Kendall Luciana Berger Lucy Powell Madeleine Moon Margaret Beckett Margaret Hodge Maria Eagle Mark Hendrick Mary Creagh Meg Hillier (Paired) Melanie Onn Michael Dugher Mike Gapes Natascha Engel Neil Coyle Nia Griffith Pat McFadden Paul Flynn Peter Kyle Phil Wilson Rachel Reeves Rob Flello Rob Marris Roberta Blackman-Woods Rosie Cooper Rushanara Ali Ruth Smeeth Shabana Mahmood Siobhain McDonagh Stephen Kinnock Susan Jones Toby Perkins Tom Blenkinsopp Tom Watson Tracy Brabin Tristram Hunt Vernon Coaker Wayne David Wes Streeting Yasmin Qureshi Yvonne Fovargue
UN Warns Children at Risk as Yemen Catastrophe Looms February 10, 2017
Three UN agencies Friday launched an appeal for emergency food aid to conflict-torn Yemen to avoid a humanitarian “catastrophe” that will hit children hardest.
An assessment by the UN’s agencies for food and for children, FAO and UNICEF, and the World Food Programme, finds “unprecedented” levels of hunger with the number of people who could not be sure of having enough to eat, up by 3 million, in 7 months.
A total of 17.1 million people are now struggling to feed themselves with 7.3 million of those in need of emergency assistance. Yemen's population is 27.4 million.
The joint study was the first of its kind since the conflict dramatically escalated in March 2015 after Saudi Arabia led a joint international coalition to war against Yemen's people.
One fallout of the fighting has been a slump in agricultural production across the country, contributing to soaring malnutrition. “We are witnessing some of the highest numbers of malnutrition amongst children in Yemen in recent times,” said Meritxell Relano, UNICEF’s representative in Yemen.
“Children who are severely and acutely malnourished are 11 times more at risk of death as compared to their healthy peers, if not treated in time.”
Stephen Anderson, WFP Country Director in Yemen, said: “The current level of hunger in Yemen is unprecedented. “Tragically, we see more and more families skipping meals or going to bed hungry.”
The conflict has left more than 7,400 people dead and 40,000 injured, but UN-led peace efforts and seven ceasefires have all ended in failure.
...and US and Saudi ships are stopping all food imports from getting through!!!
This is GENOCIDE.
‘How Can I Deselect My Labour MP?’ A Short Guide to Reselection and Democratic Accountability by Eric Sim, excellent free advice here:
Nicolas J S Davies is the author of Blood On Our Hands: the American Invasion and Destruction of Iraq. He also wrote the chapters on “Obama at War” in Grading the 44th President: a Report Card on Barack Obama’s First Term as a Progressive (Lol) Leader.
In the past weeks, Burundi and S. Africa have joined Namibia in declaring their intention to withdraw from the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC). They are likely to be followed by a parade of other African countries, jeopardizing the future of an international court, which has prosecuted 39 officials from 8 African countries, but has failed to indict a single person who is not African.
Ironically, African countries were among the first to embrace the ICC, so it is a striking turnaround that they are now the first to give up on it.
But it is the United States that has played the leading role in preventing the ICC from fulfilling the universal mandate for which it was formed, to hold officials of all countries accountable for the worst crimes in the world: genocide; crimes against humanity; and war crimes - not least, international aggression, which the judges at Nuremberg defined as “the supreme international crime”, from which, all other war crimes follow.
As the ICC’s founding father, former Nuremberg prosecutor Benjamin Ferencz, lamented in 2011: “You don’t have to be a criminologist to realize that if you want to deter a crime, you must persuade potential criminals that, if they commit crimes, they will be hauled into court and be held accountable. It is the policy of the US to do just the opposite as far as the crime of aggression is concerned.
"Our government has gone to great pains - to be sure that no US citizen will be tried by any international criminal court, for the supreme crime of illegal war-making.”
The US has not only refused to accept the jurisdiction of the ICC over its own citizens. It's gone further, pressuring other countries to sign Bilateral Immunity Agreements (BIA), in which they renounce the right to refer US citizens to the ICC for war crimes committed on their territory.
The US has also threatened to cut off US aid to countries that refuse to sign them. The BIAs violate those countries’ own commitments under the ICC statute, and US pressure to sign them, has been rightly condemned: as an outrageous effort to ensure impunity for US war crimes.
Resistance to US Impunity
To the credit of our international neighbours, this US strategy has met with substantial resistance. The European Parliament overwhelmingly passed a resolution, stating that BIAs are incompatible with EU membership, and urging EU- member states and countries seeking EU membership not to sign them.
Fifty-four countries have publicly refused to sign BIAs, and 24 have accepted cut-offs of US aid as a consequence of their refusal. Of 102 countries that have signed a BIA, only 48 are members of the ICC in any case --- and only 15 of those countries are on record as having ratified the BIAs in their own parliaments.
Thirty-two other ICC members have apparently allowed BIAs to take effect without parliament- ary ratification, but this has been challenged by their own country’s legal experts in many cases.
The US campaign to undermine the ICC is part of a much broader effort by the US government to evade all forms of accountability under the laws that are supposed to govern international behaviour in the modern world ----- even as it continues to masquerade as a global champion of the rule of law.
The treaties US policy systematically violates today, were crafted by US statespersons and diplomats, working with foreign colleagues, to build a world where all people will enjoy some basic protections... from the worst atrocities, instead of being subject only to the law of the jungle or “might makes right.”
So current US policy is a cynical betrayal of the work and wisdom of past generations of US citizens, as well as of countless victims all over the world to whom we are effectively denying the protections of the UN Charter & Geneva Conventions, the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and many other multilateral treaties our country ignores, violates or refuses to ratify.
Avoiding jurisdiction in international courts is only one of the ways that the US evades international accountability for its criminal behaviour. Another involves an elaborate, well-disguised, public relations campaign that exploits the powerful position of US corporations in the world of commercial media.
Major Propaganda Funding
The US government spends a billion dollars per year on public relations or, more bluntly, propaganda, including $600 million from the Pentagon budget. The work of its PR teams and contractors is laundered by US news- papers --- and repeated and analyzed ad nauseam, by monolithic, flag-waving TV networks.
These profitable corporate operations monopolize the public airwaves in the US, and also use their financial clout, slick marketing, and the support of the US State Department to maintain a power- ful presence in foreign and international media markets.
Foreign media in allied countries provide further legitimacy and credibility to US talking-points and narratives as they echo around the world. Meanwhile, Hollywood fills cinema and TV screens across the world with an idealized, glamorized, inspirational version of the US that still mesmerizes many people.
This whole elaborate “information warfare” machine presents the US as a global leader for democracy, human rights and the rule of law, even as it systematically and catastroph- ically undermines those same principles. It enables our leaders to loudly, persuasively, demonize other countries and their leaders as dangerous violators of international law, even as the US and its allies commit far worse crimes.
Double Standards in Syria / Iraq
Today, for instance, the US & its allies are accusing Syria & Russia of war crimes in east Aleppo, even as the US’s own and allied forces launch a similar assault on Mosul. Both attacks are killing civilians & reducing much of a city to rubble; the rationale is the same, counterterrorism; & there are many more people in the line of fire in Mosul, than in east Aleppo.
But the US propaganda machine ensures that most US citizens see only one, in Mosul, as a legitimate counterterrorism operation (with Islamic State accused of using the civilians as “human shields”) and the other, in east Aleppo, as a massacre (with the presence of Al Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate, the former Nusra Front, virtually whited out of the West’s coverage, which focuses almost entirely on the children and makes no mention of “human shields”).
The phrase “aggressive war” is also a no-no in the Western media when the US government launches wars, across international borders. In the past 20 years, the US has violated the UN Charter to attack at least eight countries (Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, Libya & Syria), and the resulting wars, have killed about two million people.
A complex whirlwind of conflict and chaos rages on in all the countries where the US and its allies have lit the flames of war since 2001, but our US leaders still debate new interventions and/or escalations as if we are the fire brigade not the arsonists. (By contrast, the US government and the Western media are quick to accuse Russia or other countries of “aggression” --- even in legally murky situations, such as after the US-backed coup in 2014, that ousted the elected president of Ukraine.)
Systematic violations of the Geneva Conventions are an integral part of US war-making. Most are shrouded in secrecy: the propaganda machine spins the atrocities that slip through into the public record, as a disconnected series of aberrations, accidents and “bad apples,” instead of as the result of illegal rules of engagement and unlawful orders from higher-ups.
The senior officers and civilian officials who are criminally responsible for these crimes in US & international law -- systematically abuse their powerful positions to subvert investigations, cover up their crimes, & avoid any accountability whatsoever.
When UK playwright Harold Pinter was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2005, he bravely and brilliantly used his Nobel lecture to speak about the real role the US plays in the world, and how it whitewashes its crimes. Pinter recounted a meeting at the US Embassy in London in the 1980s in which a senior embassy official, Raymond Seitz, flatly denied US war crimes in Nicaragua ---- for which the US was in fact, convicted of aggression by the International Court of Justice (ICJ). Seitz went on to serve as Assistant Secretary of State, US Ambassador to the UK, and then Vice-Chair of Lehman Brothers.
As Pinter explained: “this ‘policy’ was by no means restricted to Central America. It was conducted throughout the world. It was never-ending. And it is as if it never happened.
“The United States supported - and in many cases engendered every rightwing military dictatorship in the world, after the end of the Second World War. I refer to:- Indonesia, Greece, Uruguay, Brazil, Paraguay, Haiti, Turkey, the Philippines, Guatemala, El Salvador, and, of course, Chile. The horror the US inflicted upon Chile in 1973 can never be purged, & can never be forgiven.
“Hundreds of thousands of deaths took place throughout these countries. Did they take place? & are they in all cases, attributable to US foreign policy? The answer is 'yes', they did take place, and are attributable to American foreign policy. But you wouldn’t know it.
“It never happened. Nothing ever happened. Even while it was happening it wasn’t happ- ening. It didn’t matter. It was of no interest. The crimes of the United States have been systematic, constant, vicious, remorseless, but very few people have actually talked about them. You have to hand it to the US. It has exercised a quite clinical manipulation of power, worldwide, while masquerading as a force for universal good. It’s a brilliant - even witty - highly successful, act of hypnosis.”
If, in 2016, the world seems to be more violent and chaotic than ever, it's not because the US lacks the will to use force or project power, as both major party candidates for President, & their military advisers appear to believe, but because our leaders have placed too much stock in the illegal threat and use of force, and have lost faith in the rule of law, any international cooperation and diplomacy.
After a century of commercial dominance, & 75 years of investing disproportionately in weapons, military forces & geopolitical schemes, perhaps it is understandable that US leaders have forgotten how to deal fairly and respectfully with our international neighbours. But it's no longer an option, to muddle along, leaving a trail of death, ruin and chaos in our wake, counting on an elaborate propaganda mach- ine, to minimize the blowback on our country and our lives.
Sooner, rather than later, US citizens & our leaders must knuckle down and master the very different attitudes & skills that we will need to become law-abiding global citizens in a peaceful, sustainable, multipolar world.
Russia ends treaty limiting plutonium production in response to recent US escalation of hostility Fort Russ News - Topwar.ru - Lenta - News.Ru - translated by J. Arnoldski
TopWar: On October 3rd, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on suspending compliance with the agreement with the US on disposing weapons-grade plutonium. The main reason for this decision was pointed out as the “unfriendly attitude of the US towards Russia.”
Sources from the State Duma have reported that Russia is ready to resume the agreement, if the US cancels all the anti-Russian sanctions. Plus, Russia demands that the US reduce its military contingent in Europe, before Russia resumes compliance with the protocols. The State Duma’s statement reads:
“Acting according to the agreement and the protocols of the agreement can be resumed after the US eliminates the reasons which led to this radical change in circumstances: after the US reduces its military infrastructure and the number of its troop contingents deployed on the territory of the NATO countries having joined NATO after September 1st, 2000, down to the level at which they were on the day that the agreement and its protocols entered force.
"Since then NATO has grown to encompass 9 states of Eastern Europe. Just around the corner is NATO’s 10th state to be included since 2000 - Montenegro.”
In addition, Russia has demanded, as one of its conditions, that Washington cancel the so-call- ed Magnitsky Act.
We await a reaction from the US.
Popov: Russia can and should withdraw from the 1997 treaty with Ukraine By Eduard Popov for Fort Russ - translated by J. Arnoldski -
The other day, the disturbing news came from Lvov, the unofficial capital of Ukrainian Galicia, that the Lvov regional council has filed a lawsuit to forcibly evict the Pushkin Russian Cultural Centre. As the head of the regional council, V. Girnyak, said in his statement, organizations tied to the Anti-Terrorist Operation are preparing to transfer the building on Korolenko Street. The Lvov deputies hardly expect to earn more money from these “ATOers.” Rather, the eviction of Pushkin Russian Cultural Centre is explained by a different motive: once again, punishing anyone ideologically representative of an “enemy” Russian culture.
This centre’s building was leased to the Russian community of Lvov in 1990. In 1999, the then mayor Vasiliy Kuybida, set the symbolic rent fee of 5 hryvnia (around $1 back then).
Let us quote one founding document signed by Ukraine, the Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation, and Partnership between the Russian Federation and Ukraine from May 31st, 1997. Point 12 of the agreement reads: “The High Agreeing Parties shall protect the ethnic, cultural, linguistic, and religious identities of national minorities on their territory and create conditions for the fostering of their identity….they will contribute to creating equal opportunities and conditions for studying the Russian language in Ukraine and the Ukrainian language in the Russian Federation, training pedagogical staff for teaching these languages in educational establishments, and for these purposes, provide equal state support.”
Points 1-2 of the agreement are based on the recognition of the friendly relations between the countries and their territorial integrity. Hence why the agreement is often called a border treaty. For Ukraine, whose territorial sovereignty over some territories (including Galicia, which was part of the Second Polish Republic until September 1939) is quite disputed, this agreement was a real gift. It is no coincidence that a number of patriotic politicians in Russia, demanded that this document not be signed.
Russia’s recognition of Kiev’s sovereignty over territories included in the Ukrainian state is founded on Ukraine’s observance of the rights of its Russian- cultured citizens. After the coup d’etat in 2014, Ukraine began pursuing a policy of cultural genocide (ethnocide) against the Russian-cultured population. Now Ukraine is discussing the initiative of the scandalously infamous politician Irina Farion, to deprive Russian residents in Ukraine of civil rights. In fact, this measure is already being implemented. The number of Russian schools has rapidly declined while Russian organizations are being prosecuted and their activities are under close surveillance by Kiev’s intelligence services.
In accordance with the 1997 treaty, an entire network of federal and regional organizations of Ukrainians is funded in Russia. For example, in the Rostov region there is a city-level and regional national-cultural autonomy of Ukrainians. The organization receives funding from the city and regional budgets. Its head, the businessman Makarchuk, is a member of the Public Chamber of the Rostov region and is proud of his friendship with Rostov governor Vasili Golubev. Meanwhile, Makarchuk is published on the website of the Ukrainian neo-Nazi Svoboda party and frequently makes Russophobic statements.
Unfortunately, Russia is largely to blame for the fact that the civil rights of Russian-cultured people in Ukraine are being massively violated. An example of this is the patronizing policy of Rostov region's authorities. But on the federal level as well, the state does not make sufficient (or any) efforts to defend the Russian population of Ukraine (nearly half of the country’s total population).
Meanwhile, a more responsible attitude towards obligations would lead to discussion of the 1997 treaty. In a situation in which the second country (Ukraine), massively violates the treaty’s basic premises, then Russia has the right to withdraw from the treaty with all the legal and political implications. I see no reason for the Russian budget to support the activities of Ukrainian organizations in Russia, or recognize the territorial sovereignty of Ukraine.
WHITE HELMETS -- SHAM
The Ron Paul Institute has pointed out: “We have demonstrated that the White Helmets are an integral part of the propaganda van- guard, that ensures obscurantism of fact and propagation of Human Rights fiction that elicits the well-intentioned and self righteous response from a very cleverly duped public. A priority for these NGOs is to keep pushing the No Fly Zone scenario which has already been seen to have disastrous implications for innocent civilians in Libya, for example.”
What better chance to push “the No Fly Zone scenario” than arriving within “moments” of the convoy tragedy, filming it and creating a propaganda scenario before any meaningful forensic investigation could even be started, since the trucks were still burning. And of course, the “White Helmets”, aka “Syrian Defence Force”, were filming, rather than attempting to put out the fire and rescue those in the burning trucks.
[Ed. Yet the UK's Guardian, that snivelling wreckage of a "Liberal" newspaper, lies, & describes them as "the White Helmets, a volunteer rescue group," quotes their accusations of Syrian & Russian "constant bombing of civilians" and calls for a "no-fly-zone" now --- as in Libya.]
The Russian Defence Ministry subsequently caused outrage by claiming that their Drone footage: “shows the bombed Syrian aid convoy included a truck full of militant fighters carrying mortar guns.”
However: “The footage emerged as the United Nations rowed back from describing the attack on the aid convoy as air strikes, saying it did not have conclusive evidence about what had happened.”
It must be asked, why on earth, after long and protracted negotiations over the convoy would Syria and or their Russian ally risk the wrath of the US & “coalition”, and of further decimation of the country, by laying themselves open to accusations of bombing aid convoys?
The tragedy has emphatically achieved 1 thing, however. Wiped from the headlines, is another atrocity - the US bombing which killed over 60 Syrian soldiers and wounded over 100 others, just two days earlier, on Saturday 17th Sept. - causing Russian Foreign Ministry spokes- woman Maria Zakharova, to comment: “We are reaching a really terrifying conclusion for the whole world: That the White House is defending Islamic State. Now there can be no doubts about that”, according to the RIA Novosti news agency.
Again - Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? Who will guard the guards?
VIVA ALLENDE! ISABEL ALLENDE BUSSI TO RUN FOR PRESIDENT OF CHILE IN 2017 ELECTIONS!
Novorossia Today - Isabel Allende Bussi, the first female leader in the 83-year history of the Socialist Party of Chile (PS), and daughter of famed former leader Salvador Allende, has said that she will present herself as a candidate on behalf of her party in the 2017 presidential election.
US prepares an Islamic army in Kosovo
Pravda.Ru - The US is preparing a reserve echelon in the territory of its Kosova enclave. But to keep a secure strategic space, the Southern Serbian provinces may be separated from Kosovo. Given the total apathy of the authorities of Republika Srpska... this plan is inching closer to its implementation.
The goal of the Americans is clear: if Berlin's discontent ousts US bases from Germany, after all, the US will have a spot in Kosovo. It's no secret that the crime and terrorist mayhem plaguing Kosovo, is under the patronage of the US.
Yelena Guskova, a Senator, and member of the Academy of Sciences of the Republika Srpska (Bosnia and Herzegovina), honoured with many Russian and Serbian state awards, commented to Pravda.Ru on this matter, in an interview.
Former Commander of the French foreign legion in Kosovo -- General Jacques Ogar, has recently confirmed to Pravda.Ru, evidence obtained from confidential US sources -- that there are at least five ISIS training camps in Kosovo, which are preparing suicide bombers and an army of Islamists to conquer Europe.
Having found no evidence that proved Milosevic was guilty, the Hague tribunal exonerated him. What do you think of it?
Slobodan Milosevic is a very significant historical person in Serbia's modern history, and the whole of Yugoslavia. In the early 1990s he was seen as the last communist in Europe -- who should be annihilated. His own country turned him over to the Hague; the so-called new government -- after the colour revolution of 2000.
However he was a leader who defended his country and the truth. He combated a large amount of lies at the Tribunal, which tried to prove that only the Serbs were guilty of all the events of the 1990s, as they were charged with collective crimes.
No leader of the Muslim territories of Yugoslavia was convicted, only Serbian ones. The figure of Milosevic was very important, but they didn't manage to find any evidence.
His brother Borislav Milosevic says they secretly took some samples of food and water Slobodan had been given and tested it in Moscow. And it turned out that poison had been added. And it was difficult to breathe for him, which means that something was infiltrated into the air.
Then he stopped eating, but the process had been launched. His death is mysterious but the Tribunal admitted that he was not responsible for crimes in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Colonel Jacques Ogar, who was Commander of a foreign legion in the territory of Yugoslavia in the UN group admits that they were ordered to stand for the Kosovars against the Serbians... Western troops openly supported separatists and participated in punitive actions against the Serbians. Do you have such data?
Surely. I'm a Head of the Centre for the Study of the Contemporary Balkan Crisis at the Russian Academy of Sciences. Our main task is to collect documents and publish them. There occur more and more documents on the events since 1990, which confirm it.
It's absolutely clear that international organizations were biased. The Albanians approach their dream - to create a big country with an Albanian population only. The US has worked a lot to support this movement, as Kosovo is a project of the US.
And they would have got independence long ago, unless it was for Russia. Russia said No to their plans in 2007. it disturbed them, and now they do not influence Russia, but try to govern the Serbian authorities. But I think the process hasn't been completed, & there's a chance to return Kosovo to Serbia.
As they say, there are 8 ISIS training camps in the territory of Kosovo. It is reported that they train suicide bombers to carry out acts in the Western Europe and create a whole army to conquer it. How can you comment on this?
When huge flows of refugees were going across the Balkans in Europe, there were mainly young men and almost no couples. They were well- dressed, were going by three, and had enough means to live in decent hotels. It is clear that there are those among them who should stay in the Balkans & orchestrate implementation of their leaders' aims.
As the Serbian officials struggle to join the EU, they implemented all the terms. And they were told, to not only to let in these refugees, but also to build camps for them. Many stayed in the South, where the population is majority Muslim . A great quantity went to Kosovo and Metohija.
And there's an uncontrolled NATO base Bondsteel there, where enormous resources are deployed. This territory is not controlled by anyone. And when questions of the US military camps in Europe occur, no one speaks of Kosovo.
In Kosovo's camps, where terrorists are trained, they are set absolutely free. It's very dangerous for the whole of Europe, and the Balkans first of all. The US, though, wants to whip Serbia into submission and recognize the independence of Kosovo and Metohija.
In Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Republika Srpska, and Serbians who reside there, are hampering these plans.
There is evidence that, as early as in the mid- 1990s the US aimed to go down to the Balkans when the agreement with Germany terminated if they had to leave. They need a territory in Bosnia & Herzegovina, in Kosovo, Metohija, Montenegro, Serbia & Macedonia. Republika Srpska hampers implementation of this plan today.
They need to annihilate the Republic and make the whole of Bosnia and Herzegovina a unitary state. They didn't manage to conduct a colour revolution in the Republika Srpska, while the terror acts, which may be backed by Muslims in other territories, may be fruitful.
These plans may come forward in the nearest future, and it's a threat for the whole of Serbia. As there is a plan to separate the Southern regions of Serbia, where a lot of Albanians and Muslims reside. Today Serbian officials regard these refugees calmly, as well as capable of possible terrorist acts. But it should be paid 'special attention'.
there's a big difference between the news, and the truth - if you want the latest news and the truth, say, on Brazil - then please go to our One Union page.
US/UK elite bankrolled A. Hitler
Germans were paid in company shares for loans that managed Germany's war reparations -- thus US capital began to actively integrate into the German economy.
The total amount of foreign investment in German industry during 1924-1929 amounted to almost 63 billion gold Marks (30 billion was accounted for by loans), and the payment of reparations — 10 billion Marks. 70% of revenues were provided by bankers from the US, and most banks were from JP Morgan.
As a result, in 1929, German industry was in second place in the world, but it was largely in the hands of the USA's leading financial-industrial groups.
"Interessen-Gemeinschaft Farbenindustrie", main supplier of the German war machine, financed 45% of the election campaign of Hitler in 1930, and was under the control of Rockefeller's "Standard oil".
Morgan, through "General Electric", controlled the German radio and electrical industry, via AEG and Siemens (up to 1933, 30% of the shares of AEG were owned by "General Electric") and through the Telecom company ITT — 40% of the 'phone network in Germany.
In addition, they owned a 30% stake in the air- craft manufacturing company "Focke-Wulf".
"General Motors", belonging to the DuPont family, established control over "Opel".
Henry Ford controlled 100% of the shares of Volkswagen. In 1926, with the participation of the Rockefeller Bank, Dillon, Reed & Co, the second largest industrial monopoly in Germany, after I.G Farben, merged with metals group, "Vereinigte Stahlwerke" (Steel trust) plus Thyssen, Flick, Wolff, Feglera etc.
US co-operation with Germany's military- industrial complex, was so intense and pervasive, that by 1933, the key sectors of German industry, & large banks such as the Deutsche Bank, Dresdner Bank, Donat Bank, etc, were all under the control of US financial capital.
The political force that was intended to play a crucial role in the Anglo-American plans was being simultaneously prepared.
We are talking about the funding of the Nazi party and A. Hitler personally.
As former German Chancellor Brüning wrote in his memoirs, from 1923, Hitler received large sums from abroad. Where they went, is not known, but they were received through Swiss and Swedish banks.
It is also known that, in 1922 in Munich, a meeting took place between A. Hitler and the military attache of the US to Germany -- Captain Truman Smith -- who compiled a detailed report for his Washington superiors (in the office of military intelligence), in which he spoke highly of Hitler.
Through Smith's circle of acquaintances, A. Hitler was introduced to Ernst Franz Sedgwick Hanfstaengl, (Putzie), --- a graduate of Harvard University who played an important role in the formation of A. Hitler as a politician, rendered him significant financial support, and secured for him, acquaintance & communication with, senior British figures.
Hitler was prepared politically, but, as Germany reigned in prosperity, his party remained on the periphery of public life... The situation changed dramatically with the beginning of 'the crisis'.
In the autumn of 1929, the collapse of the US stock exchange was triggered by the Federal Reserve, and the next stage of the Anglo-US financial circles' strategy, had started.
The Federal Reserve and JP Morgan, decided to stop lending to Germany --- inspired by the bank crisis & economic depression in Central Europe.
In September 1931, England abandoned the gold standard, deliberately destroying international payments systems and completely cutting off "financial oxygen" to the Weimar Republic.
But a financial miracle occurred for the Nazi party: in September 1930 as a result of large donations by Thyssen and I.G. Farben --- the party got 6.4 million votes & took 2nd place in the Reichstag;- after this, more generous investments from abroad were activated.
The main link between the major German industrialists and foreign financiers, became H. Schacht.
On January 4th, 1932, a meeting was held with the largest English financier, a Mr M. Norman, A. Hitler, and von Papen, which concluded a secret agreement on the financing of the NSDAP.
This meeting was also attended by US policy-makers, the Dulles brothers --- something their biographers do not like to mention.
On January 14th, 1933, a meeting between Hitler, Schroder, Papen & Kepler took place, where Hitler's program was fully approved. It was here that they finally resolved the issue of the transfer of power to the Nazis, and on 30th January, A. Hitler became Chancellor.
The implementation of the next stage of the strategy thus began.
The attitude of Anglo-American ruling circles to the new government was very sympathetic. When Hitler refused to pay reparations, which naturally called into question the payment of war debts, neither the UK or France pressed their payment claims.
Moreover, after a visit to the US in May 1933, H. Schacht was placed, again, at the head of the Reichsbank, and, after his meeting with the President and the biggest bankers on Wall Street, the US allocated Germany new loans --- totalling $1 billion.
In June, during a trip to London & a meeting with M. Norman, Schacht sought an English loan of $2 billion and a reduction and then the cessation of payments, on old loans.
Thus, the Nazis got what they could not achieve with the previous government.
In the summer of 1934, Britain signed the Anglo- German transfer agreement, which became one of the foundations of British policy towards the Third Reich, &, at the end of the 30's, Germany became the main trading partner of England.
Schroeder Bank became Germany's main agent in the UK & in 1936 his New York office teamed up with the Rockefellers, to create Schroeder, Rockefeller & Co. investment Bank, which the Times magazine called the Berlin-Rome "economic propagandist axis".
As Hitler himself admitted, he conceived his 4- year plan on the basis of foreign financial loans, so it never inspired him with the slightest alarm.
In August 1934, US Standard oil acquired 730,000 acres of land in Germany... then built large oil refineries which supplied the Nazis with oil.
At the same time, Germany secretly took delivery of the most modern equipment for aircraft factories, from the US, which would begin producing German planes.
Germany gained large numbers of military patents from US firms Pratt and Whitney, Douglas, and Curtis Wright --- and it was US technology, building the Junkers-87.
In 1941 --- as world war ll was raging --- US investments in Germany's economy amounted to $475 million. Standard oil invested - 120 million, General motors - $35 million, ITT - $30 million, and Ford - $17.5 million.
The close financial & economic co-operation of Anglo-American and Nazi business circles, was the backdrop against which, in the 30's, a policy of appeasement led to world war II.
Today, as the world's financial elite begins to implement the 'Great depression 2' plan with its subsequent transition to the "new world order", identifying its key role in the organization of crimes against humanity, becomes a priority.
Yuri Rubtsov is a doctor of historical sciences, academician of the Academy of military sciences, & a member of the International Association of historians of world war II.
The graphic video above shows fascism in the centre of Europe. Our media says the US-backed coup in Ukraine, is a people's revolution: we say it's fascism.
a new Russia base appears just near Alaska
LATEST NEWS, ON THURSDAY, JAN. 31st
Lebanon’s leaders agree - new govt to be led by Hariri - political factions say January 31st, at 4:37pm
Lebanese leaders reached a deal, on Thursday, to set up a new unity government, Reuters reported, citing three political sources from different factions.
The agreement would end nine months of wrangling over how to share out cabinet portfolios in the heavily indebted state.
It will be the third government led by the Western- backed Saad al-Hariri, who has vowed to carry out economic reforms.
Ali Hassan Khalil will stay on as finance minister, a senior official said.
Negotiations on the new national unity government - including the main political blocs - began after a May 6th election, in which allies of the Iranian- backed Shiite group Hezbollah gained ground.
Hezbollah has reportedly picked Shiite doctor Jamil Jabak as the health minister in the new government.
By picking the health minister, Hezbollah will be moving beyond the more marginal role it has played in past governments.
Nuclear Powers Responsible for Preserving World Peace Beijing, January 31st, at 3:29pm
Prensa Latina - The meeting between the five nuclear powers concluded in Beijing, on Thursday, with the commitment of those states to share responsibility for preserving peace and security on the planet, the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, reported on Thursday.
Geng Shuang, Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman, said at a press conference, that the meeting - called P5 - was a success and produced a consensus that China, Russia, the United Kingdom, France and the United States will support the Treaty on the Non- Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons in force.
They also pledged to cooperate with each other, maintain strategic consultations, closely coordinate the pact's review and foster open dialogue with sectors of the international community, such as academia and the press, he said.
Geng considered the common work of these states to be essential in the face of security challenges in the current world.
He emphasized the importance of looking objectively at each other's strategic intentions - strengthening mutual trust and exchanges on the subject.
China, in its capacity as rotating coordinator of the P5, will continue to work on promoting consensus, managing differences among the 5 countries and replacing rivalry with cooperation, the spokesman added.
The meeting was held Wednesday and Thursday in Beijing and focused on unifying positions on disarmament, the peaceful use of atomic energy and the validity of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.
Aside from the meeting, Russia and the US discussed their dispute over the Treaty on Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) and, according to international press reports, the talks were unsuccessful.
Washington threatened to begin withdrawing from that arrangement next Saturday, unless Moscow agrees to destroy the Novator 9M729 missile, which the White House believes violates the agreement.
Russia claims full compliance with the 1987 treaty between the former Soviet Union and the US.
That agreement addresses the elimination of short & intermediate-range missiles, and is considered a transcendental document reached during the Cold War, for the resolution of international friction, the control of the nuclear process & the protection of the planet's security in the past, as well as in the present.
Thai party ousted in 2014 coup picks Thaksin loyalist for PM in elections January 31st, at 3:24pm
Thailand’s Pheu Thai Party, which was ousted from power by the military in a 2014 coup, on Thursday picked a close ally of fugitive ex- premier Thaksin Shinawatra, as its main candidate for prime minister.
The elections are scheduled for March 24th. Pheu Thai’s Sudarat Keyuraphan could face off against current military junta leader Prayuth Chan-ocha in the election.
However, Prayuth has not yet said he will accept the nomination of a pro-military party that wants him on its ticket.
Prayuth is expected to make a speech on Friday outlining the successes of the junta’s nearly five years in power.
Veteran politician Sudarat, 57, is a longtime Thaksin ally, who helped found his now-defunct Thai Rak Thai Party, a predecessor to Pheu Thai.
(Source - RT)
Nearly 1,000 Deserters Join Syrian Army January 31st, at 3:15pm
Prensa Latina - Nearly 1,000 deserters returned to the Syrian army in just one week, due to the 2018 amnesty decree in the provinces of Damascus, Hasaka, Raqqa and Deir Ezzor, military sources reported.
Chief of Syria's Political Security Directorate, Lieutenant General Hassan, stated that, in less than 24 hours, about 32 military deserters turned themselves in to the Military Police of Damascus, along with hundreds of fugitives who fled from the Military Compulsory Service.
He added that the pardoned soldiers will join their units to defend the homeland & fight terrorist organizations, after legalizing their status, according to the laws in force.
The figure includes those who accepted the pardon and rejoined the army in regions of the provinces of Hasaka, Raqqa and Deir Edzzor, the sources said.
The operations in this regard were organized by the Syrian security forces and the Military Police, the reports stated.
Greece to ratify Macedonia’s NATO accession deal in ‘coming days’ – Athens January 31st, at 2:47pm
Greece will bring Macedonia’s NATO accession agreement to parliament for ratification “in the coming days,” the government spokesman said, on Thursday.
The move would bring into effect the change of the country’s name to North Macedonia.
Once parliament ratifies the NATO protocol, Greece’s Foreign Ministry will inform their colleagues in Macedonia of the result, and this will automatically bring the name change into effect, spokes- man Dimitris Tzanakopoulos said. He didn’t give a specific date.
Tzanakopoulos added that the nearly three-decade dispute had given rise to... “the monster of lies, nationalism and extreme historic revisionism” in Greece, AP reports.
Russia registered most powerful cyberattack from abroad,on presidential election day January 31st, at 2:35pm
TASS - The most powerful cyberattack from abroad was launched on the day of Russia’s presidential elections in March 2018, to discredit the election results, Deputy Director of the National Coordination Centre for Computer Incidents, Nikolai Murashov, said, at the National Information Security Forum, Infoforum -2019, on Thursday.
The Centre had registered cyberattacks from abroad since June 2017 against the national segment of the Internet, Murashov said.
The first peak of this cyberattack was registered on the day when the Russian president held his annual Q&A session on June 15th, 2017, he said.
"Thanks to the technical measures taken in advance, the cyberattack did not affect such an important event," Murashov said.
"The peak of a new cyberattack wave was registered on March 18th, 2018, the day of the Russian presidential elections. The attack aimed to disrupt the video surveillance over the voting process, across the country - which could have unleashed a campaign for discrediting the election results," the Centre’s deputy director said.
The cyberattack used a botnet of 30,000 computers in 86 countries. The bot daily generated 15,000 queries for DNS-servers, which created outmost loads, Murashov said.
Over six months, Russian specialists halted the operation of 50,000 sources of cyberattacks and exposed the use of 30,000 domain names by perpetrators. The specialists analyzed 100 samples and four modifications of the malware and notified 85 national groups of response to computer incidents about their results, he said.
"As a result, a system of technical measures was introduced. It helped prevent the disruption of the national segment of the Internet," Murashov explained.
The National Coordination Centre for Computer Incidents was set up in September 2018, by order of the FSB (Federal Security Service) after a decree by the Russian president, on establishing the State System of Detecting, Preventing and Eliminating the Consequences of Computer Attacks on Russia’s Information Resources (GosSOPKA in Russian).
Kosovo PM says Serb goods tax ‘should not be linked to talks’ January 31st, at 1:15pm
Kosovo’s Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj on Thursday insisted that talks on normalizing relations with Serbia should continue and should not be linked to Pristina’s tax on Serb goods.
Haradinaj pointed out that Kosovo didn’t halt talks with Serbia, when Belgrade prevented it from joining Interpol last year, AP said.
“The tax is Kosovo’s sovereign decision. It was not set against the dialogue,” Haradinaj said.
“Serbia has taken a lot of decisions, but none of them has served to push us not to go to the table of talks.”
In November, Kosovo set a 100 percent import tariff on Serb and Bosnian goods, saying it would only be lifted, when Belgrade recognizes its sovereignty and stops preventing it from joining international organizations.
The EU-facilitated dialogue started in 2011. Belgrade says it won’t take part until the tariff is lifted.
Serbia does not accept Kosovo’s 2008 declaration of independence.
US, SDF Prevent Dispatch of Humanitarian Aid to Eastern Syria January 31st, at 12:52pm
FNA - The US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) blocked a convoy of humanitarian aid sent by the Syrian authorities to the city of Hajin, forcing the vehicles to turn around, Russian sources said.
General Sergei Solomatin, the head of the Russian Centre for Syrian Reconciliation, announced on Wednesday, that Damascus, together with the Syrian Arab Red Crescent Society organized a shipment of humanitarian aid to Hajin, located on the Eastern bank of the Euphrates River on January 30th.
"A column of humanitarian aid consisting of 10 trucks carrying bottled water, food and medical supplies, as well as hygiene products and basic necessities, was blocked in al-Hossainiyeh region, by Kurdish units from the US-backed SDF," Solomatin said.
Solomatin added that Kurdish militia forced the convoy to turn around, obeying strict orders by the US military officials.
He said that Syria's Red Crescent Society has been authorized by the UN and the Red Cross to send humanitarian aid to all regions of the war-torn country.
A total of 2,000 people currently stay in the Eastern Syrian city of Hajin, held by the ISIL terrorist group, according to Andrej Mahecic, the spokesperson of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
Discovered Near Damascus: Large Cache of Israeli, Western Arms
January 31st, at 12 midday
FNA - The Syrian army found a large number of weapons and military equipment, including Israeli and western arms, during cleansing operations in Eastern Damascus.
The engineering units of the Syrian army found the large cache in the Eastern Ghouta of Damascus on Thursday.
The cache included several Israeli machine-guns, RPGs, NATO-made sniper guns and missile-launchers.
Last week, the Syrian army found a large number of weapons and ammunition, including Israeli and western arms, during cleansing operations, in the former bases of terrorists near Damascus.
The engineering units of the Syrian army discovered weapons and military equipment, including different types of mortars, artilleries, RPGs and over 200,000 rounds of machine-guns and guns, in operations to purge terrorists from the towns near Damascus.
Meantime, a field source reported that the army forces found Israeli missiles, western sniper guns, satellite systems and night-vision goggles and systems among the weapons.
''Sajdik’s Donbass plan'' is pro-American, dead end for Minsk process – Nikonorova January 31st, 11:30am
DAN - The Donbass conflict settlement plan proposed by Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson- in-Office in Ukraine, Martin Sajdik, was designed in U.S. interests, to deadlock the Minsk talks, Donetsk People’s Republic envoy to the Contact Group, DPR Foreign Minister, Natalia Nikonorova, said on Thursday.
“U.S. interests were obviously behind the so-called “Sajdik’s plan”, from the beginning, to deliberately bring the negotiations to a dead end, in the hope to prolong the conflict at Russia’s borders, and continue to put pressure on it,” Nikonorova said, in a statement.
On Thursday, U.S. Department of State special representativefor Ukraine negotiations, Kurt Volker, supported the previously announced “peace plan.” The DPR is not surprised at this situation.
“Unsurprisingly, the U.S. Department of State special representative, again, supports a plan which nobody understands or approves, even the OSCE and the UN, as it totally contradicts the Package of Measures provisions,” Nikonorova noted.
The only possible way to secure a political settlement in Donbas, is to implement the Minsk Agreements, which, in turn, envision the coordination “of any conflict settlement initiatives” with the DPR and the LPR, she said.
Sajdik, in an interview to Austrian magazine Kleine Zeitung on January 24th, alleged that a new approach was needed for settling the Donbass conflict, such as the emergence of a UN interim administration - with police and military functions in the People’s Republics. The DPR Foreign Ministry views the new Donbass plan, as a bid to sabotage Minsk-2.
Dozens of people martyred, injured by Saudi-led Aggression on Yemen January 31st, at 11:06am
Dozens of people were martyred or injured in various areas across Yemen by the Saudi-led aggression on the Arab impoverished country.
Two children martyred on Thursday by a US-Saudi artillery shelling targeting border villages at Saada Governorate.
Al-Massirah Net reporter affirmed that populated villages at Razih border district, were targeted by Saudi artillery shelling, killing 2 children and causing material damage in the area.
Earlier on Wednesday, houses and property of citizens at Baqem border district were bombed with dozens of missiles by US-Saudi forces, leading to material damage to the property of citizens. The Saudi- led aggression launched 3 raids on Kitaf district and a series of raids on Al- Dhaher border district of Saada, Al-Massirah reported.
Elsewhere at Hodeidah Governorate and other districts, the US-Saudi aggression intensified its airstrikes, rocketry and artillery shelling, leading to the martyrdom and injury of 6 people, including women.
A man martyred and 2 other women injured by the enemy’s aggression on their house at Al-Monkem village, Yemen new agency (SABA) reported.
The US-Saudi forces fired more than 15 Katyusha rockets at Al-Za’afara village & districts around. Spy drones were also spotted at the area.
Residential areas, the airport, Yemen mobile, Al- Shabab neighbourhood and many other outskirts of Hodeidah, were shelled by the aggression’s artillery and weapons, sources said.
(Sources: Al-Massirah/al Manar)
Russia Says ‘No Progress’ on Nuclear Treaty ahead of Deadline January 31st, at 10:16am
Moscow and Washington have made “no progress” in talks on saving a key arms control treaty, a Russian diplomat said on Thursday, with the United States expected to begin withdrawal this weekend.
Russian and US officials had met on the sidelines of a meeting of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council in Beijing to discuss the fate of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces treaty (INF) — a source of raging tensions between Moscow and Washington.
“Unfortunately, there is no progress,” Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said, after talks with Andrea Thompson, Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security.
The United States has warned that it will begin a six-month withdrawal process from the treaty on February 2nd unless Russia destroys its 9M729 ground-based missile system, which, it says, breaches the Cold War-era agreement.