Vince at Quora: Should the next president be strongly pro-EU, pro-NATO, supportive of US allies and sceptical of Putin?
Vince answered a question at Quora:
It depends on whether that “you” is plural or singular. I assume no one would ask what is important to one respondent, so let’s assume for now that you mean a collective “you.” The problem then becomes what group you are referring to. Just Americans or Americans and Europeans? The only way to be fair is to include the larger group. So let’s do that.
But we are then left with this hard-to-define term “sceptical of Russia.” In the standard Democrat interpretation, this could mean do we want to continue accusing Russia of “meddling in elections” and of “aggression.” To focus on the possibility of “meddling in elections” presupposes one of the following:
1 – The American people are so gullible that their vote can be determined more by a foreign influencer exerting only the subtlest influence, via a web site, for example, in Russia, that does not openly endorse any one candidate. If the US people are really this weak minded that they would be influenced more by a foreign country whose contribution in dollars is, for example, less than 1% of the money spent by US influencers in the same election, we have to seriously consider whether there is any hope for US democracy at all.
2—on the other hand, there is the possibility that the Russians have better arguments and are better able to muster facts, logic and reason to show beyond a doubt that their viewpoint is correct and superior to that of the political party they supposedly are trying to defeat. In this case, how can you defeat a party that makes a lot of sense vs a political party that makes much less sense to the US public? Is it fair to the voters to censor this more reasonable party?
For example, Russia was accused of exposing dirty tricks of the Clinton campaign that were used to unfairly damage the Bernie Sanders camp. Seth Rich admitted to providing WikiLeaks with this information and Wikileaks CEO Julian Assange stated that the info did not come from a state actor. And wouldn’t he know? But even so, which is more important: exposing this bad behaviour of one of the candidates or the allegation (unproven) that a foreign country had exposed the dirty tricks? You should not have to think very long and hard over that question. It is hard to avoid the impression that anyone – whether foreign or domestic – who was able to dig up the dirt on a candidate who is guilty of behaviour that the voting public would generally consider vile and disgusting, is not behaving reprehensibly but would in fact be praiseworthy.
But this question of what I or – let’s assume – we consider important also creates a dilemma because certainly none of us can know what Westerners collectively want. Generally, Europeans may have something of a consensus, because they have a lot to gain by maintaining the Iran Deal, for example, which they generally consider potentially lucrative. But then, in a way, Germany is a special case. In their case, there is virtually a consensus in Germany that when Trump’s ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, threatened them — and specifically BASF and Uniper — not to continue their work on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project for delivery of Russian natural gas or face new sanctions, this was an underhanded way of bullying them into buying US LNG, which is prohibitively more expensive. Thus there is a consensus among German business people against this ham-handed bullying to stop the project because they generally believe buying US LNG would threaten their economy. They believe they need the Russian gas to remain in the no. two position in world exports. After all, gas is the main source of energy in production, which is energy intensive at best, and no sane person would choose the most expensive energy source over another significantly cheaper one. So we can know for a certainty that German business people would not want to adopt the standard US anti-Russian policy on that issue. As for German politicians, they too tend to support the business community. Some have taken a strong position and this will no doubt become a political hot button issue that will garner votes for whichever politicians promise to support Nord Stream 2 and stand up to the US.
As for a “president who would support allies,” it is no longer clear from what I have said above, what allies the US has left. The abandonment of the Iran Deal cost the US considerable credibility in Europe, the Middle East, Asia and elsewhere. The profligate imposition of sanctions was also a major detriment to US credibility. In fact, China (and hence also Russia) has been able to capitalize on these sanctions and on the tariffs, which were generally hated worldwide. In fact, it will be a boon to Russia as well as China that the sanctions and tariffs were so widely rejected. There are two considerations:
1--Countries threatened with sanctions should they buy the Russian S-400 systems – ie, countries like Turkey, India and others have just thumbed their noses at the sanctions and gone ahead and bought them. This cost the US major face and credibility. After all, if a cop threatens speeders with fines and then fines no one, drivers will scoff at the police and keep speeding.
2—The sanctions, tariffs and demands to stop trading with Iran have induced Europe, China, Russia and Iran to boost the use of local currencies such as the euro and yuan, etc. in international trade settlements and thereby bypass the US dollar. Whenever the dollar is used less in international trade, its value and credibility as a reserve currency are reduced. Inversely, when another currency is used to substitute the USD in international settlements, that currency gains in value and credibility as a reserve currency. Thus, the sanctions intended to hurt Russia and its partners are indirectly harming the USD.
In fact, China has persuaded Europe, most African, most Middle Eastern and most Asian states to establish currency swap mechanisms, and many of these countries are already bypassing the US dollar in all of their international trade. For instance, Iran, Syria, Venezuela, China and Russia are deliberately avoiding use of the USD while others, like India, are using non-dollar currencies in significant percentages of their trade. This is just the beginning. One expert has predicted that the US dollar could soon lose 30% of its value. This is the price of US bullying.
As for NATO, this organization was founded for the sole purpose of countering the Soviet Union. James Baker had promised Russia that NATO would never move into the former Warsaw Pact countries, but that promise was broken. NATO is now at the RF border and this cavalier attitude toward the RF has induced Russia to build up their arsenal significantly, adding wonder weapons such as missiles that cannot be intercepted by any known method and supercavitating torpedoes and subs that can travel significantly faster than any of their Western analogues.
So what is NATO doing these days? Well, NATO is responsible for the deaths of 13,500 people, mostly civilians, in Kosovo and for causing a humanitarian crisis there that exists to the present day, where Serbs residing in Kosovo generally do not dare leave their homes for fear of attacks by radical Islamists, who have not only harmed the Serbs but have all but destroyed all Orthodox churches and cemeteries in the region. NATO used genocide by Serbs as a pretext, but UN appointee Carla de Ponte conducted a thorough study after the war and concluded that the actions of the Serbs did not rise to the level of genocide but the alleged victims were committing horrific crimes such as organ harvesting. NATO also killed 60-90 civilians and wounded 150 in their aerial bombardment aimed at taking out Ghadaffi, who had led the most prosperous and one of the most stable governments in the Middle East. The country has been a shambles since 2011 as a result of NATO’s intervention. No Western leader has been able to articulate any sensible reasons for this atrocity. So rather than me telling the reader whether the next president should support NATO, I have given the sensible reader information with which to mull that question yourself.
In view of all this, intelligent and moral people will be able to decide whether NATO deserves our support.
Finally, the question as to whether the next president should be “sceptical” about Russia depends, again, on how you define sceptical, but the West has generally been anti-Russian and the question would therefore be whether our next president should continue to seek to impoverish the Russian people with sanctions and threaten the country with war, as the Western governments and NATO have been doing.
I defer the answer to this question to CFR president Richard Haass, arguably the most respected and influential foreign policy expert in the US. Haass wrote in December 2018 a paper titled How a World Order Ends, in which he stated that the “US cannot defeat Russia.” He therefore recommended that the US learn to treat Russia with respect and to confer with its leadership rather than issue insulting and juvenile ultimatums. I think you can imagine how Haass, a foreign policy expert, would answer this question.
We can easily infer from Putin’s speech before the Federal Assembly and from the recent tests of Russian hypersonic missiles that Haass was not merely speculating but was fully justified in making this statement.
As for whether the president should be strongly pro-EU, any US president should support the will of the Europeans themselves. Remember how bulling people has cost the US prestige and credibility, so he must be well informed but willing to bow to the wishes of the people. In the case of the UK, a referendum showed that they wanted to separate from the EU. Obama had made great efforts to dissuade them, but it made no difference. Some Europeans even said his interference helped persuade them to vote to leave! Several minor parties in various countries are also Euroseptics and they seem to be growing in popularity. The Europeans are the ones who have to put up with the consequences of being in the EU. If at some point, a country decides it wants out, the US president should use his influence to urge them to do what is best for them, but he is, after all, the president only of the US, not of the world.
That is the end of my point-by-point analysis. But that is not the good part. If you open this quora page you will see that Glenn Anderson, the person who asked the question, was unable to articulate a rational response to my points, merely accusing me of being a Russian agent! That was the whole purpose of the exercise, to humiliate anyone who dared to dissent.
This seems to be what the "debate" has sunk to in the US and much of the West. The game has not ended with a clear winner or with a draw. It has simply disintegrated as the losing side capitulates to its own innate reasoning power and declares itself the winner on the grounds that it owns the football. The US is at a new low point. The West has been called "post-Christian," "post-capitalist," "post-historic" and so on, but we are now beyond any of that. We are post-reason. We are at the knuckle-dragging "I don't need no stinkin' brain" stage. And this applies to both sides of the left-right divide. Because the debate has never ever been about left vs right. It has always been about the ability to think for oneself vs capitulation to Corporate America and letting the Elites do our thinking for us. If you are with Corporate America, you really don't need a brain and if you try to use yours you will get slapped down. You literally do not need a brain. Because Corporate America has several different sides, to accommodate the witless no matter where they find themselves on the politial spectrum. Their arguments are pre-fabricated modules handed to us by our "leaders." We are actors in the Time Machine, either the Eloi or the Morlocks, neither of which is fully human, just machines existing for the pleasure of their creator. we are no longer subjects, just objects to be moved like chess pieces by outside forces.
This is the reason I have said and will say: there is no hope that the US will heal itself. It will, however, be healed by outside forces.
Richard Haass was right. A world order has ended.
The good news: The healing will be painful but complete and a new America will rise from the ashes. There's nowhere to go but up.
Below is our translation from news.rambler.ru on Washington’s desperate measures to keep the Russians from enjoying Arctic resources, and Russia's success in exploiting them, with commentary by Vince Dhimos. You will recall that yesterday’s contribution showed how US sanctions and tariffs were aimed not so much at protecting US interests from any tangible enemy but rather at keeping other states from enjoying their own resources. We hope that by now you will have understood that this attitude “if we can’t have it you can’t either” is an immutable feature of US foreign policy and is one of the peculiarities that are dragging America down – even to the extent of threatening its very sovereignty and existence as a state.
Today’s example is right along these same lines.
“[The US]…at the end of the presidency of President Barack Obama, began to make efforts to step up their activities in the Arctic. However, none of these plans produced practical results.
Suffice it to say that the US Navy is not designed for operations in the Arctic region - the Pentagon does not have the necessary ships to operate in these latitudes, nor even the icebreaker fleet. For example, there are only two ships of this type at the disposal of Washington, and one of them is built to operate in Antarctica; therefore, they cannot be compared with Russian icebreakers.”
Clearly, when it comes to Russia, the US government is psychologically incapable of minding its own business.
But there seems to be another immutable feature of US foreign and military policy, and that is something we focus on regularly at NSS, ie, Washington’s intense fear of actual military confrontation of other world powers, such as Russia and China, and even Iran. The wanton – actually habitual – use of sanctions and tariffs instead of military action against powerful adversaries. This now seems to be a hard-and-fast policy and Russia, for example, apparently no longer fears a possible military confrontation with the US.
There is a hitch, though. Israel seems to be the latest US proxy. They just now fired missiles at the Damascus International Airport again.
The last time Russia decided the Israelis had crossed a line, they sent the S-300 system to the Syrian Arab Army. It slowed down Israel’s hostility to Syria but failed to stop it. Russia can be expected to ratchet up its countermeasures to the Israeli attacks, but it will not jeopardize its tattered relations with Tel Aviv either. The main reason Russia tolerates the attacks on Syria is that Putin wants to consolidate Russia’s reputation as a peace maker and does not want to be seen as taking sides in Middle East conflicts. It is a brilliant strategy, particularly as contrasted with the US policy of siding with dictators and war mongers in the region for short term gain.
Hydrocarbon wealth of the Arctic pushes the United States to a losing confrontation with the Russian Federation
Source: FBA Ekonomika Segodnya
The Arctic region today is one of the most important areas of the Russian state strategy, which can be seen both in the military component and in the civilian component – one need only recall the project of the Northern Sea Route.
The Arctic is essential for Russia
This circumstance immediately provoked a reaction from the United States, which, at the end of the presidency of President Barack Obama, began to make efforts to step up their activities in the Arctic. However, none of these plans produced practical results.
Suffice it to say that the US Navy is not designed for operations in the Arctic region - the Pentagon does not have the necessary ships to operate in these latitudes, nor even the icebreaker fleet. For example, there are only two ships of this type at the disposal of Washington, and one of them is built to operate in Antarctica; therefore, they cannot be compared with Russian icebreakers.
It's no secret that a large-scale icebreaking program is being implemented in Russia, which is superimposed on the extensive experience of Soviet shipbuilding in this area, with the result that Moscow will soon be able to control the entire Arctic region.
This is important both in terms of cargo handling - the Northern Sea Route is actually shorter than traditional routes through the Pacific and Indian Ocean, as well as in a military-strategic sense, because you can travel from Russia to American territory through the Arctic.
Americans stepping up activity in the Arctic area
Accordingly, Russia's activity in the Arctic can give our country a significant strategic advantage, which is well understood in the Pentagon, and as a result, there various campaigns are regularly conducted to simulate the activity of the United States and NATO in this region.
Let us recall how the aircraft carrier "Harry Truman" became, in October 2018, the first American aircraft carrier in 27 years to enter the Arctic Circle in the context of NATO exercises called Trident Juncture.
These exercises were implemented as part of the training of the alliance forces in the event Article 5 of the NATO Charter, that is, the rules on joint actions in the event of aggression against one of the member countries, should be enforced. It is clear that in the case of the Arctic this could only be a simulation of actions against Russia, which once again confirms the importance that the alliance attaches to this confrontation with Moscow.
As a result, it is not surprising that the US Navy Minister Richard Spencer said that next summer, American warships would go to the Arctic, which is necessary for the Pentagon to test the prospects for operational hostilities in the Arctic.
In US strategy, the Arctic competes with the South China Sea
Konstantin Blokhin, leading researcher at the Centre for Security Research of the Russian Academy of Sciences in a conversation with the FBA Economy Today, noted that the importance of the Arctic for the American military strategy is constantly increasing due to the strengthening of our country in this region.
“There is a comprehensive US strategy to increase its military presence in the Arctic. In fact, Washington has a catastrophic situation with the Arctic fleet, and this causes acute irritation to the Pentagon,” states Blokhin.
According to Konstantin Vladimirovich, this represents a stalemate for the United States, since, despite all the rhetoric and actions of NATO along with the US Navy, in the short term, the Pentagon cannot change the situation here in any way.
“In this matter, it is necessary to understand that the Arctic, though an important region for the United States, is still not paramount. For example, now we can say that in the near future the main focus of the Pentagon will be on the South China Sea,” concludes Blokhin.
The Americans don’t want to yield to Russia in the Arctic
According to the expert, in this aspect we are talking about the growing power of China, about the Spratly Islands and other geopolitical issues, where Washington intends to contain Beijing, and which are already included in the grand design of US foreign policy.
“The Arctic, of course, is also of great importance for the United States, if only because there is a huge amount of useful resources - for example, hydrocarbons there. Here you can even say that the future of the world will be determined by the struggle for these resources, as a result of which this strategic interest arose from the Pentagon and the political leadership of the United States,” summarizes Blokhin.
In addition, weather conditions are changing in the Arctic now - glaciers are melting, making it possible to intensify the global economy. And here the American side also does not want to give in, especially in view of the serious strategic efforts on the part of Russia.
“The United States even came up with the idea that the Arctic should be controlled not by Russia, but by the international community, and this, of course, is a substitution of concepts. Just in this way, Americans usually promote their interests,” states Blokhin.
However, as experts believe, it is unlikely that Americans will find opportunities to realize their large-scale tasks in the Arctic and the South China Sea, and the saying “too many irons in the fire” is perfectly applicable.
Accordingly, it is not yet possible to say that these efforts of the United States can lead to any practical result, just that the Americans want to show they will not leave Russia alone with the riches of the Arctic.
 Translator’s note: The expression used in the original Russian text here is a Russian saying that could be rendered literally as “he chased two rabbits but caught none.”
Vince Dhimos answered the following question on Quora:
Do you see China as a legitimate threat to US hegemony? If not, what does China lack that the US possesses?
It’s not that China lacks anything, it’s just that China does not apply the concept of “hegemon” to itself. This is why Westerners, indoctrinated to believe world powers must all want to be the hegemon, in imitation of the US, which now shows signs of failure precisely because of its obsession to control every country and region, keep thinking China or Russia wants to be the next hegemon in a succession of global bosses.
Therefore, they mistakenly think China “lacks” something if it does not become the next world bully in history. China in fact has something the US lacks, ie, diplomatic skill that enables it to get along with others instead of bullying them with ultimatums, sanctions and bombs.
Like Russia, it accepts the concept of a multipolar world, in which there can be no hegemon because a hegemon implies a monopolar world (the world controlled by the US), which China and Russia both reject. I would remind the reader that Russia and China are well balanced against each other and neither could overcome the other sufficiently to become a hegemon. Neither side wants this either. They don’t want to follow the pattern of failure of the US.
The following is our translation of an article from a government owned Chinese site (sohu.com) that reflects the thinking of China’s leadership:
After the end of the bipolar political pattern, the world entered a period of multi-polarization.
1. The main reasons for promoting the development of multipolarization in the world are
(1) The multi-polarization of world economic power has promoted the development of multi-polarization in world politics
In today's world, with the rapid development of science and technology and economy, there is no power that can have the absolute advantage in all areas and control the world as desired. The process of economic globalization has greatly reduced the possibility of constructing a unipolar world; balance has led to changes in the political status and role of countries, so that China’s comprehensive national strength has increased. Russia is committed to revitalizing the economy and restoring its status as a world power; developing countries are adjusting accordingly, and the EU as a whole is increasingly influencing global affairs. The Japanese economy is strong and is attempting to become a political power and a military power. These countries and regional groups invariably advocate a trend in the world toward multi-polarization.
(2) The United States dominates the world in a unpopular manner and is opposed by most countries in the world.
Hegemonism and power politics are the main sources of danger to world peace and stability. Promoting the development of multi-polarization in the world is the only correct way for human society to avoid the harms of the unipolar world. The United States is currently in a relatively weak period; the European powers have become the main force that constrains US world hegemony; Russia and China are the main opponents of American world hegemony; Japan is unwilling to continue to be a US political pawn, and is eager to play the role of a political power in the world; the Chinese nation has become an important force in the world; We desire world peace, the growth of democratic forces, and the widespread existence and functioning of international organizations and regional organizations. US domination of the world is not only reversing the trend of world history, but reducing its own strength, making it incapable to build its unipolar world. The diversification of various forces in the world and the profound adjustment of relations between major powers are conducive to the development of multipolarization.
2. The characteristics of today's international landscape are mainly reflected in the following aspects
(1) A variety of strategic forces jointly lead the world affairs, and the international pattern shows a trend toward “one super and many strong”.
(2) Each activist pays more attention to national interests and dilutes ideological differences. National interests are fundamental factors that constrain and influence the behaviour of the state in international relations.
(3) In international competition, the military role has been declining, while the role of the economy and science and technology has become increasingly prominent, and competition for comprehensive national strength is fierce.
3. The formation of a multi-polarization pattern will be a long-term process
First, the hegemonism of the United States and the attempt to build a unipolar world are the biggest obstacles to the development of multipolarization. Second, the continuation of the Cold War mentality in the world, the widening gap between the rich and the poor in the North and the South, and ethnic divisions and religious disputes will also have various disturbances and shocks to the multi-polarization trend. Third, the formation of a multi-polarization pattern is a process of recombination and redistribution of interests among various forces in the world. This will lead to various uncertainties, and the process of multi-polarization in the world will be full of contradictions and struggles.
Below is our translation of an article from baltnews.lv originally published in Russian, with commentary by Vince Dhimos. By now all Westerners with a few brain waves left after the decades-long 24-7 assault on intelligence by the msm know that virtually the entire Western elite is making a supreme effort to denigrate and destroy Russia. It turns out that the Cold War was not about the Soviet Union or communism after all, it was about Russia and all things Russian, which the obedient sheeple are supposed to hate with all their mind, soul and heart in accordance with the wishes of the Elites who control Washington, the main ones of which are listed here.
It is racism pure and simple but we are given a million and one excuses to make it look like something rational and to paint Russia as an enemy even though it never was and, Lord willing, never will be. The propaganda campaign waged all around us is so overwhelming that a recent poll finds only about 5% of Americans who think Russia is more friend than foe. This is perhaps Russia's darkest hour. Yet the Russians remain undaunted, just as they did in the darkest moments of WW II.
Church matters are inherently arkane, and mind-numbing, to outsiders and I will not attempt to explain the tedious details of this matter. The main thing to know is that this movement is not religious but purely political and rooted in Russophobia.
Suffice it to say that this whole plot was initiated by arch-Russophobe President Poroshenko, who is currently stirring up war between the US and Russia in the Black Sea -- with the blessings of the US Empire. He prevailed upon the church fathers in Constantinople to declare the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, previously subordinate to Moscow, autocephalous, or independent. At first, perhaps nothing will change, but there will be a powerful movement and powerful propaganda in Ukraine to turn the Ukrainian Christians against their old patriarch, thereby creating a division against Moscow. The cultural is political.
Why autocephaly in Ukraine is dangerous for the entire Orthodox world
Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople promised to provide Ukraine with autocephaly. He stated that the Constantinople Orthodox Church is not intimidated by any threats. What will happen to the Ukrainian church after its split?
Ukraine can get autocephaly. This occurred after the Sunday service in the temple of St. Foka Mesahoru in Istanbul, said the Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew. Video recordings of the speech can be seen on the Patriarchal page on Facebook. So, on April 17, President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko asked the Patriarch of Constantinople to provide the autocephaly of the united local Ukrainian church.
"Now it is the turn of Ukraine, which will receive the status of autocephaly after a short time, I hope, despite the existing opposition, which there will be, because it is its right," said Bartholomew.
What is autocephaly and why does Ukraine need it?
Now the Ukrainian Orthodox Church is considered self-governing as part of the Moscow Patriarchate. Also in Ukraine there are churches that are not recognized by world Orthodoxy - "Kyiv Patriarchate" and the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church. Petro Poroshenko is trying to achieve recognition of all structures and the creation on their basis of a single autocephalous church.
In preparation for the granting of autocephaly, Constantinople decided to appoint Archbishop Daniel of Pamphylia of the United States of America and Bishop of Edmonton Hilarion of Canada [this was most certainly done under pressure from the US--Vince] to be appointed Exarchs in Kiev. The Russian Orthodox Church broke off diplomatic relations with Constantinople and stopped the commemoration of Patriarch Bartholomew, finding the actions of Constantinople unnatural and illegal.
The German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung notes that if the ROC (Russian Orthodox Church) breaks off relations with Constantinople, it will be the largest conflict between Orthodox structures since the separation of the Roman and Byzantine churches almost a thousand years ago. Thus, the largest church schism will occur.
If autocephaly is granted, then ...
“This will mean, firstly, a break in relations between Constantinople and Moscow, and secondly, it will without exaggeration, entail a religious war in Ukraine,” says historian Vladislav Petrushko to the Orthodox and Peace portal. According to him, the Patriarch of Constantinople should be aware that such a step would lead to a great conflict.
Doctor of Law, Professor of HSE [Higher Secondary Education] Alexander Domrin is sure that the granting of autocephaly in a country where a civil war is taking place is against the rules.
“The loss of the Russian Orthodox Christians thanks to the Patriarch of Constantinople, Bartholomew, who cease to recognize him as the ecumenical patriarch, is also not very good.
Recall that in 1054 there was a Great Church schism, when the Christian church disintegrated into Western (Roman Catholic) and Eastern (Greek-catholic).
Previously at New Silk Strategies:
CAN THE POPE EVER PUT THE SCHIS BEHIND HIM?
Why Russian Orthodox chief left his chair empty at pope’s summit
Vince responded on Quora, commenting on an accurate response by professor Quentin Poulsen to the question: Has Putin totally out-manoeuvered the US in Syria?
Please first read what Quentin says.
Thank you, Quentin. You hit the highlights for us.
I note the following from your response:
“America is a white, Christian-dominated nation. There is no reason on this earth for them to be *intervening *in the Middle East and killing millions of people. & neither are they wanted, evidently.”
Unfortunately, the US is not Christian-dominated, nor is it dominated by its people. Its Evangelical church endorses “Christian” Zionism, which to a believer in the scriptures, is a heresy based on a misreading of the Bible, as explained here.
If it were truly Christian, none of this nightmare in the Middle East and its spill-over in the West would be happening. Nor would it force its religion on anyone else. However, the US is dominated by a cabal of agents, such as think tanks, the CIA, the msm, “Christian” Zionist mega-churches, etc, most of which are listed in a recent article. Unfortunately, however, this list does include segments of the grassroots whose domination by this cabal causes them to unwittingly cooperate fully with it in creating anti-Christian mayhem.
It is obvious that America’s excuses for waging war do not hold water, as Mr. Poulsen points out. Much has been written about the underlying motives behind US wars, including theories focussing on oil and theories about Israel or the Saudis and notably the petrodollar agreement concluded between Nixon and King Faisal. But beneath even these possible hidden motives, an analysis of the outcomes shows that the salient outcome of US wars has been in fact the elimination of Christianity in the Muslim world (pleasing to the Saudis for sure, and not a drawback for Israel either – which recently chose Christmas day to launch a missile attack near Damascus airport) and the weakening of Christian culture in Europe due to the massive migrations of Muslims to that continent (also pleasing to the Saudis and not contrary to Israeli interests). Even Trump has failed to keep his promise of admitting Middle Eastern Christians to the US, and as revealed here.
It is impossible for this outcome to have been achieved unintentionally, ie, without the specific intent of the aforementioned cabal (not counting the grassroots components thereof).
The list of agents who actually control the US (which does not include the grassroots, except as it includes “Christian” Zionists), shows that none of them would have any reason to support the existence of a “Christian America,” and it is my belief that the motive at the very bottom was to achieve what has in fact been achieved thus far, and that is an extreme reduction in the Christian population of the Muslim world and a drastic dilution and attenuation of Christian culture in the West.
Were it not for Russia, a self-proclaimed Christian nation whose elites clearly do not wish for the elimination of Christianity, the process would have gone on to completion. This is precisely why the elites have declared war on Russia in every way but militarily. But now, Russia has demonstrated, by touting its formidable non-interceptable arsenal, that the US cannot defeat it. The list of the aforementioned agents is gradually acknowledging this. None less than Richard Haass, president of the CFR, has admitted this in his seminal article How a World Order Ends.
This provides a glimmer of hope for peace as we go into 2019.
Vince answered this question on Quora:
WHAT SIX WAYS IS THE GOVERNMENT IMPORTANT AS AN INSTITUTION?
If you know enough to know that there are exactly 6 ways that government is important, then this is not a legitimate Quora question because you already know -- or think you know -- the answer, whereas the purpose of Quora is to consult experts on issues that you do not know enough about.
On the other hand, it all depends on which government and of which country we are talking about. In other words, whether you mean a legitimate or an illegitimate government. If you mean the US, then the government is a fraud. That is, it is controlled not by the people — as it purports to be — but by a number of agencies that attempt to control the minds of the people and hence, policies that run counter to the people’s interests. It is for this reason that the US is constantly involved in disastrous wars and has a perennially increasing debt burden that will eventually crush the US economy and the world economy.
The following is a list of those agents that illegitimately control — or rather supplant — the “government”:
Saudi Arabia, working silently in the background to implement the petrodollar agreement (as explained previously at NSS: http://www.newsilkstrategies.com/news--analysis/israel-and-saudi-joined-at-the-hip-and-writing-failed-us-policies)
Israel, via AIPAC lobby and ADL and media (AIPAC is an unregistered foreign lobby, operating unregistered in contravention of US law. As detailed here: http://www.newsilkstrategies.com/news--analysis/a-foreign-power-writes-us-legislation-you-ok-with-that)
The Corporate Media, which works overtime to foment anti-Russia hate that can lead to war and disastrous economic and financial policies that are bankrupting the country, creating economic bubbles and threatening the world economy.
The terminally gullible public that swallows the swill of said Corporate Media
The arms manufacturers, via their lobbies (breaking the national bank with runaway defence spending)
Big Business (which, together with Wall Street – see below – has blown a stock market bubble that seems to be collapsing at this very moment)
Wall Street (which, like Big Business, together with Wall Street – see below – has blown a stock market bubble that seems to be collapsing at this very moment)
The Federal Reserve Board, whose policies have led to an irresponsible unpayable debt, galloping inflation and dangerous bubbles, for example, in stocks and housing. The existence of the Fed is in fact unlawful in that Art. 1. Sect. 8 of the Constitution declares that the Congress is to coin currency and determine the value thereof.
Opinion-shaping think tanks like the Atlantic Council (the propaganda arm of NATO), the CFR and many others, the vast majority of which have declared Russia a “threat” and condemn the announced pull-out from Syria, never mind that ISIS was on the verge of driving the Syrian army into the sea when the Russian air force arrived just in the nick of time in September 2015. Funny how ISIS had grown so strong despite the valiant efforts of the US Coalition’s War on Terror purportedly waged to eliminate it.
Big Religion (which has rammed “Christian” Zionism down the throats of most Evangelicals, who are considered heretics if they fail to embrace it, even though it is clearly non-scriptural. I explained previously at Quorum why this is so https://www.quora.com/Why-does-Israel-support-terrorists-in-Syria/answer/Vince-Dhimos)
The gullible followers of the above-mentioned Big Religion who, in the Evangelical community, instead of heeding what their Commander-in-Chief said in Matthew 23:39, send the modern secular Israel the message: you are the Chosen Ones and can do no wrong. We will send you lethal arms with which to kill your neighbours. Never mind the commandment in Leviticus, in your scriptures, to love God with all your heart and all your mind and all your soul and to love your neighbour as yourself. We mega-church goers decide who goes to heaven and who does not. So is he Catholic Church less belligerent in this regard? No. The Pope has called the Putin-Assad alliance “dangerous” (without specifying why) but has never criticised the Saudi-US alliance. Assad is the most Christian-friendly Muslim leader in the world, while Christian worship (even in the private of one’s home!) is banned in Saudi. Further discussion here.
The White House and its bully pulpit, which – via the msm – constantly supports disastrous warlike foreign policies and disastrous economic policies that widen the gap between rich and poor and lead to even deeper debt. Even though the president is elected by the people, the choice of candidate is completely out of the people's hands, controlled as it is by the groups on this list.
The Congress and Senate, which likewise spread propaganda – via the msm – that have the same effect as the White House’s policies, persuading voters to accept these bad policies by making them appear rational even though they are insane. Even though the Congress and Sentat are elected by the people, the choice of candidate is completely out of the people's hands, controlled as it is by the groups on this list.
The CIA, NSA and other agencies beyond the control of the elected officials, of the public, and of the law
Hollywood. Generally, with few exceptions, when a popular US movie includes a scene involving the US armed forces, the bias is positive. For example, in the movie Bird Box, there is a scene with an Iraq war vet who describes how he and his men lovingly escorted an Iraqi man and his son to the local school every day to protect them from terrorist attacks. The vet never even hints at the extreme violence perpetrated by the US that bombed hundreds of thousands of civilians in that country. Sure, there were lots of good men among the US troops in Iraq, but the impression created by the movie is that the US military was only doing good in Iraq.
The Guardian posted a whole article dedicated to the unsavory close ties between Hollywood and the US military.
The sad thing about this story is that Americans are almost fully absorbed in a left-right tug of war, with conservatives blaming liberals for the loss of their republic “of the people, by the people and for the people,” and liberals and Neocons blaming conservatives for the loss of their “democracy.” Democrats and Neocons alike blame Russia, their favourite whipping boy, for their loss. Yet if they were correct that Russia was able to influence Americans to vote for the conservative candidates that they fear and hate so passionately, then their fellow Americans would have to be the most weak-minded people on the planet, allowing an “enemy” to capture their minds almost completely using God knows what sort of dirty tricks and sinister mind control methods. If this kind of mind control is possible, then the US public must be the most gullible people on the planet, vulnerable to the wiles of these clever Russians. But if they are so weak minded and easily captured by an enemy, what chances does the US have of survival? Slim to none, wouldn’t you say? So would such dimwits even be worth saving?
On the other hand, according to this conspiracy theory, the conservatives as a group would be collectively traitors willing to sell out their country – an outlandish theory.
In fact, this scenario would mean that the Russians have sinister plans for everyone.
But what would Russia want with such a bunch of losers on their hands? How would they administer this motley bunch of simpletons who are so easily deceived?
Further, if we analyse all the instances of “Russian aggression,” we clearly see that in each case – South Ossetia, Abkhazia, Ukraine, Syria. Crimea – the Russians were invited to aid a group of vulnerable people who had begged Russia for protection. Even in the case of Chechnya, there were ethnic Russians who were being harmed by terrorists. If Russia really wanted to take over Ukraine, as some claim they do, then given the superiority of Russian weapons, Russia would have been able to do so. It would be like taking candy from a baby. But they aren’t snatching up the candy, are they? Thus there is something terribly wrong with the theory held by Neocons, the Democrats, NATO, the Theresa May government and the Balkan states hysterical over the possibility of a Russian invasion.
The only possible answer is simple. This theory exists solely in the mind of its creators.
So what is the solution? Simply stop the hysteria, fomented by the press and by ambitious unscrupulous politicians, and wind down the rudeness, and then sit down with the Russians, who want to be friends, or at least partners, and talk, with respect, the kind of respect they have always shown toward the wayward obnoxious West.
Working together, we can solve the problems the US has always pretended could never be solved, notably the Israel-Arab conflicts and the terror problem. Iran is another bugaboo partly invented by the West. And it is clear which side refuses to budge. Iran has held out the olive branch to the Saudis but the latter refuse to talk. If the US and Russia both prevailed upon Saudi and Israel to stop being stubborn, they would both eventually come around. The danger of an Iran-Israel conflict would be neutralized in short order. The refusal of these two nations to budge is due almost exclusively to their confidence that the US will always stand by them, no matter how many unarmed Palestinians Israel kills or how many Yemeni citizens Saudi bombs. Or for that matter, how many journalists Saudi saws up.
The standoff could end tomorrow if only one world power could stop pretending – and that is all it is – pretending, that the other world power is the aggressor and needs to be kept in its place by threatening it with NATO ships and planes and slapping it with sanctions designed to impoverish its people and deny them much needed medicines.
But you, dear reader, must insist on it. Otherwise, the Russian military industrial complex will keep cranking out novel weapons that can neutralize the Pentagon and the US will keep shrinking back, shaking in its boots, while pretending it is tougher than Russia and can keep everyone safe by issuing empty threats and provoking the arguably most powerful nuclear power in the world.
Does this policy make sense to you? If not, then stop buying the fairy tales and start demanding a major change. 2019 could be the year that peace emerges on planet earth. Or it could be the last year of earth’s existence.
It’s up to all of us. We decide. But only if we can do it together.
Vince Dhimos answered a question on Quora at:
All Ukrainian signs, government documents and schools use only Ukrainian language, does this cause trouble for the large number of Russian-speaking residents in Ukraine?
I had a bit of a dust-up with Glenn Anderson, a Peace Corps volunteer in Lvov (Lviv), Ukraine, who answered the above question saying that governments in other countries – he used China and US as examples – do not post street signs in languages other than the majority languages used in those countries. I pointed out that Russian has been spoken in Ukraine for many years, alongside Ukrainian and that the new law banning the use of Russian was a provocation.
I reminded him that in China’s Xinjiang Province, street signs are written in both Chinese and Uyghur and that in the US, street signs in areas with a high concentration of certain ethnic groups, are written in the pertinent languages as well as English.
He responded as follows:
I do seem to attract Russian employees from the Internet Research Agency to my posts.
I’ve been fighting this anti-Ukrainian propaganda for a while. Believe me Vince there is nothing original about your pro-Putin screed.
Straight from the talking points.
I checked out Glenn’s posting recorde at Quora and found that he often accuses people who disagree with him of being paid members of Russian troll factories. He also suggests that Quora should censor those who disagree with him. I responded as follows [redacted]:
You are suggesting to readers that only a person paid to support the Russian viewpoint could possibly support it.
Ok, so what are the Russian propagandists telling us in their English language online publications like Sputnik and RT?
The Russians support, for example, the following views:
That the US invasion of Iraq, now universally recognized as disastrous and wrong, was disastrous and wrong;
That NATO’s invasion of Kosovo, now generally accepted as wrong, was wrong because it was based on the accusation that Serbia committed egregious offenses against the Kosovars, whereas the UN’s Carla del Ponte determined post-war that the Kosovars were committing even more egregious crimes (eg, organ harvesting) than those that the Serbs had been accused of;
That the US’ intervention in Ukraine led to the impoverishment of that country, as we all know now since the IMF reported that Ukraine is the poorest country in Europe (the IMF blames this poverty on corruption, not on the Russians);
That the US’s involvement in Syria was illegal because the US was not invited — as everyone knows;
That the killing of Ghadaffi was a horrible mistake that has plunged Libya into chaos and terror — as is now generally recognized.
That Russia now has electronic warfare systems that can disable the operation of an enemy aircraft, as confirmed by US Special Operations commander Gen. Raymond Thomas, who complained that his EC-130 recon aircraft are being disabled over Syria.
That Russia has weapons that cannot be overcome (such as its Avangard nuclear capable glide missile that can fly at 27 Mach in a zigzag trajectory and cannot be intercepted by any known means), as confirmed by CFR President Richard Haass in his paper titled How a World Order Ends, which states that Russia cannot be defeated.
Now since these viewpoints are all generally recognized by good people everywhere, does this mean that all good people are paid by the Russian government to have these opinions? BTW, did I suggest or state that I thought I was trying to be original? Common sense is never original. It is an inherent trait of humanity that, sadly, we are losing, thanks to the Elites who control our minds via the msm, political entities, think tanks, lobbies, Russophobic trolls (there are none of those here, of course), etc. I would remind the readers (not Glenn, whose mind is made up) that the worm is turning as we write. The Elites are now starting to admit that the US cannot defeat Russia. This was brought about by a series of factors, all related to Russia, and not determined by paying anyone, including the EW systems in Syria that Gen. Raymond Thomas admitted were disabling the operation of his aircraft. Did the Russians pay Gen. Thomas to admit this? Recently, as mentioned above, CFR president Richard Haass wrote an article titled How a World Order Ends in which he states that the US cannot defeat Russia and that the US must dialogue with that country. He was obviously drawing the correct conclusion from the fact that Russia now has missiles that cannot be intercepted by any known means and can destroy the US. Should we allow the Neocons/Neoliberals in charge of the Pentagon and State Department to challenge Russia to a war that the US cannot win? If you agree that we should not, does this necessarily mean that you are being paid by Russia to have this opinion? Some people seem to think so.
Now think really hard, Folks, and answer this question in your own minds: Did the Russians pay Mr. Haass to write this article postulating that the US-dominated world order is ending? Haass even used a term that Putin made famous in his Munich speech of 2007, ie, “multipolar world.” Is Haass a Kremlin plant? He used to be a run-of-the-mill Neocon. What has happened?
Is Russia buying out the entire US Elite?
Is common sense now a proprietary mental process of the Russian Federation?
Of does common sense predate Russia?
If common sense predates Russia, then why would any intelligent person accuse people who have common sense of being paid by Russia to have it?
Could it be that these accusers are being paid by someone? Just saying.
The above video, from Ria Novosti, portrays the Pantsir system in action. The Pantsir is the weapon of choice for Russia and Syria to deal with incoming cruise missiles. It uses two arms to shoot down the missiles at relatively close range, namely, cannons and small guided missiles. Both fire systems are extremely accurate. The system downed 14 of the 16 missiles fired by the Israelis from Lebanese air space, which Israel invades frequently, illegally and with impunity, since the US supports everything Israel does, for 2 reasons: the powerful lobby AIPAC and the cult of “Christian” Zionism that dominates the Evangelical community in the US, as detailed here. (The Bible is not the problem, it’s the misreading of it that has led to the Evangelical community’s blind support for the secular state of Israel and its crimes, such as the IDF’s shoot-to-kill order against unarmed protesters).
Commentary and [notes in square brackets] by Vince Dhimos.
Our translation of an article from rusnext.ru provides details on the latest Israeli attack on Syria that are hard to find in the Western media and sheds light on what we might expect in the Middle East next now that the US has promised to pull out of Syria.
The author reminds us that Netanyahu is under investigation for corruption, like his predecessor Ehud Olmert (who was jailed). He is in the same position as Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko, both of whom are leading their nations into dangerous warlike moves intended to garner points for them in an election they are not likely to win.
The article in rusnext.ru is a rather accurate translation from raialyoum.com, an alternative news source in Arabic that publishes from London. According to Wikipedia, raialyoum editor Abdel Bari Atwan has been repeatedly censored “in several Arab countries for his vocal criticism of what the paper alleges is their autocratic rule and excessive deference to Israel and the United States.”
When reading news from outlets in Saudi Arabia, the Gulf statelets or Jordan, or others controlled by pro-US editors (such as the rabidly anti-Assad Syrian Observatory for Human Rights) you need to be aware that the viewpoint and the sorting of news items to be covered may be influenced by the alignment of these countries with the US government, and the viewpoint purveyed in these sources will likely be intended to sway the reader to support US-backed “moderate” terrorists and US wars. Typically, these outlets omit any report on the progress of the anti-terror efforts in Syria. This is obviously because most such reports would reveal that there still are large pockets of ISIS left in Syria (at variance with the US story that “we have defeated ISIS”), and that Russia and Assad (not the US) are winning against the terrorists. Also generally omitted are reports of the murder of unarmed protesters in Palestine by the out-of-control IDF and the Israeli missile attacks on sovereign Syrian territory. All of which make the US and its allies look bad.
Middle East Sources that are reasonably objective and do not eschew news items on the war in Syria and Yemen, or on Saudi or Israeli atrocities, include the following:
Middle East Eye
and for insight into the real Syria on the ground check out this video site:
judging by Russia’s furious reaction, the Israeli air strike at 11:34 on 12/28/2018, we can’t rule out the possibility that the Israeli missile attack, which on Tuesday evening hit a military warehouse to the west of Damascus, injuring three people, is the very last Israeli attack on Syria, given the response of Russia and Syria and the possible consequences of another such strike in the future, writes raialyoum.com. Before detailing our point of view, it should be noted that the F-16 aircraft launched these missiles during a flight in Lebanese airspace. They did not dare to penetrate the Syrian airspace, as they had done before, ie, before the Syrian Arab Army had received Russian S-300 missiles. Perhaps the next step will be to counter these aircraft in Lebanese airspace. There are three important circumstances that should be noted in connection with what happened.
14 of 16: The Ministry of Defense reported the number of intercepted Israeli missiles.
Firstly, there is Russian discontent, which was expressed by the official representative of the Russian Ministry of Defence of Russia Igor Konashenkov. As he put it, this is a “provocative violation” of Syrian sovereignty. The statement said that Israeli aircraft fired 16 missiles, 14 of which were intercepted, and the other two hit the target - a military depot. Konashenkov confirmed – and this is very important – that this bombardment coincided with the landing of six civilian aircraft at Beirut International Airport and threatened the safety of two of them.
Secondly, the Israeli military leadership acknowledged a strike by a Syrian missile near the city of Haifa, which reveals the ineffectiveness of the Israeli iron domes, which were built at a cost of tens of billions of dollars with the support of the United States.
Thirdly, there has been significant progress in terms of the effectiveness and accuracy of Syrian anti-aircraft missiles, since the Russian military representative confirmed the elimination of 14 enemy missiles.
Netanyahu, who suffered a major defeat in the Gaza Strip a month ago, is awaiting parliamentary elections in April. A noose of corruption is tightening around his neck, so he wants to restore his reputation and once again present himself to the Israeli electorate as a strong Israeli capable of ensuring his country’s security. Therefore, he defends the missile strike on Syria, which is a provocation not only for the Syrian leadership, but for President Vladimir Putin personally. It is true that the Israeli invasion of Lebanese airspace and its threat to air traffic at the Beirut airport did not harm Russian or other aircraft. However, this hands a weighty political and diplomatic excuse to the Lebanese government and its chairman, Saad Hariri, to appeal to the UN Security Council to discuss the dangerous Israeli step. Will they do it?
Israeli attacks on arms depots in the Latakia area near the Khmeimim airbase led to the crash of a Russian spy plane and the death of 11 people on board. President Putin immediately decided to transfer the C-300 air defence system to Syria. He refused to accept Netanyahu, despite all the latter’s fawning requests. This raise the question: what will be the decision of the Russian leadership in connection with this Israeli provocation that caused damage to the Russian reputation in Syria? Will Moscow give a green light to using S-300 missiles to fight Israeli planes not only in Syrian airspace, but also in Lebanon, and, possibly, in the occupied Palestinian territories?
At the moment we have no answers to these questions, but the fierce reaction of Russia and how it sounded it can shed light on much of what we learn in the new year and, possibly, in the case of another Israeli missile attack. For the Israeli leadership, the American decision to withdraw all its troops from Syria within two months, despite the fact that the two objectives set before them were not achieved was a fatal blow. The first objective was the final liquidation of the “Islamic State” (banned in the Russian Federation - approx. Ed.) East of the Euphrates, and the second is to force Iran to withdraw its forces and subordinate groups from Syria. American troops in the east of the Euphrates and in northern Syria hampered the supply of pro-Iranian forces in Syria, and their withdrawal means the disappearance of this obstacle and the opening of the road from Mazar-i-Sharif in Afghanistan through Iraq, Syria and Lebanon to the shores of the Mediterranean. It would not be an exaggeration to say that this blow may be Netanyahu’s last shot before he finds himself where his predecessor Ehud Olmert is now, that is, in prison [actually, Olmert was released in 2017]. Even if he avoids this fate, his chances of winning the next parliamentary elections seem insignificant. Will the Israelis elect a leader who lost in the Gaza Strip and whose theatrical production around Hezbollah tunnels in southern Lebanon was exposed when the UN Security Council did not issue a single statement on this issue? Will they choose a leader in which the Jewish state lost the support of Russia? Netanyahu’s days are numbered, and we do not think that the situation for his successors will be better: the time when Israel could show its military arrogance has passed and will not return, and in the new year we will see this.
The video linked above, reposted from Russian site FAN by Jewish Telegraph Agency, shows a march in Kiev featuring an oversize poster with the face of Hitler collaborator Stepan Bandera. The marchers are said to be chanting “Jews out” in German. It is incredible that, some 75 years after Hitler’s defeat in WW II, Europe and America would be supporting a regime tainted with Nazism. Franz Kafka could have written the play book.
I answered a question at Quora.
I tend to write quickly on Quora and do not provide as many links as I do on New Silk Strategies. Therefore, I am adding a bibliography below to fill in any missing details:
Who Provoked whom in Ukraine, by Pat Buchanan
While Neocon/Neoliberal anti-Russian hawks insist that there is no ban on Russian language in Ukraine, even the Voice of America admits there is: https://www.jta.org/2017/01/03/global/ukrainian-marchers-in-kiev-chant-jews-out
Critics Blast Lviv [also written Lvov] Ban on Russian Language, Culture
I was specifically responding to a respondent who tried to compare Ukraine, where a veritable language-centred war rages, with China and the US, claiming these countries do not have street signs in languages other than Chinese and English, respectively. He was wrong, of course, as anyone who has visited a large China-town or Hispanic-majority urban site in the US knows. This respondent’s Quora record shows he is extremely combative, accusing people who disagree with him of being trolls and suggesting that Quora should ban their writings. This is the kind of person who fits in perfectly with the US-backed Ukrainian regime minions. He is a Peace Corps volunteer stationed in Lviv.
The Quora URL:
All Ukrainian signs, government documents and schools use only Ukrainian language, does this cause trouble for the large number of Russian-speaking residents in Ukraine?
It is hopelessly simplistic to compare Ukraine with the US or China.
China, the US and other countries with very large populations of other ethnicities normally do post street signs in the pertinent languages depending on demographics of the area in question. You can see signs in Spanish and Chinese in areas of the US with majorities of those ethnicities.
The new language law banning Russian in Ukraine shortly after the illegal and violent US-backed coup in Kiev was one of the main reasons Donbass refused to go along with this obvious provocation. Russian has been spoken as a second language even in Kiev for many years and Ukrainians were used to having their laws, street signs and public education in both Russian and Ukrainian. Laws banning the official use of Russian are nothing but a provocation, based on encouragement by the US, which is wrongly believed to be willing and able to use its military to support provocations in Ukraine. The Kerch Strait incident shows the US has no intentions of intervening militarily, even though it will send token amounts of lethal arms to Ukraine to maintain a semblance of support.
This whole anti-Russian movement, supported by Ukrainian fascists such as the Pravy Sektor and the Azov Battalion and the revival of fascist symbols like Hitler collaborator Stepan Bandera is what is causing much of the fuss and has led to the separatist movement. It is a demand made in response to US demands to provoke the Russian speakers. Bullying is NOT the solution. BTW, Lviv is probably the most anti-Russian area in Ukraine. There are attacks on people who dare to speak Russian on the street and there are attacks on Russian Orthodox property, as reported by the Church’s Department for External Church Relations Department for External Church Relations. Click on the link to see a photo of the burned out church. Remember that the US has also indirectly supported such anti-Orthodox vandalism in Kosovo, where it is widespread. See our article on Kosovo church desecration here.
This language law is pure KKK-type ethnic bias and has no place in a civilized country. Here is a headline to ponder:
Ukrainian region bans Russian language songs, films, books… and more
The US-backed Ukraine regime is defending an indefensible policy and it is already backfiring. The US will support you with lip service but will not go up against Russia militarily and that is where they will lose this silly game. The Russia-baiting Poroshenko has only 11% approval, and that shows where all this fascist nonsense can lead to.
From The Guardian. Why is Putin so happy and everyone else so glum?
On December 17, 2018, foreign minister Sergey Lavrov held an interview with Radio Komsomolskaya Pravda.
In this long (ca 10,000 word) interview, linked above, in an excellent Kremlin-made translation, Lavrov was asked some hard questions, mostly about why the foreign ministry did not get tougher on various western agencies and why the Russian delegations don’t just walk out of certain international organizations where they are ignored and have no voting rights. It was reminiscent of how the democrats and Neocons criticise Trump for not getting tougher on the Russians. Indeed a lot of Russians (as well as pro-Russian Westerners, like Paul Craig Roberts) level this kind of criticism at the RF government, targeting Putin, Lavrov and others. (Western critics who do this reveal more about their ignorance of the Russian mind-set than about the Russian government.)
The interview was revealing from 2 standpoints:
1) It gave Lavrov an opportunity to explain from a diplomat’s standpoint why Russian diplomats need to be patient with their boorish counterparts in the US and treat them with more respect than they deserve, and also to explain why Russia needs to retain its membership in international organizations that allow it little or no meaningful participation. Basically, this is because leaving the organization completely cuts off the Russians’ ability to have any influence at all on their adversaries.
2) It gave the lie to Western accusations that Russia lacks freedom of the press. In fact, a comparison of Russian press freedom with US press freedom reveals some surprising facts.
We checked out interviews with US news outlets and Mike Pompeo, for example, and found none of the hardball tactics of the kind on display in the Komsomolskaya Pravda-Lavrov interview. In an interview reported by Voice of America, for example, Greta van Susteren, focusing mostly on the caravan of immigrants from Honduras, was very gentle on Pompeo and did not ask him anything controversial.
In another interview on Fox and Friends, Pompeo was asked innocuous questions on China, illegal immigration and terror. On the other hand, Steve and friends really gave Pompeo a hard time over his tolerant posture on the murder of Jamal Kashoggi, presumably on orders from Saudi crown prince MBS.
Yes, this was a tough interview and Pompeo kept dodging the question. However, it was decades too late to question Saudi-US relations. The Kashoggi murder was the tip of the iceberg. The Saudis have been murdering Houthis in Yemen from the air for years, using US arms and even receiving refuelling thanks to the US Air Force (which kindly declined to bill SA for the service). The Saudis are also a major factor in the Wahhabist Sunni terror that has been ravaging the Middle East for decades. After all, Wahhabism originated in Saudi, where it is the dominant religious sect, and has provided the ideological foundation for ISIS, Al-Qaeda and other jihadist terror groups. Yet no major news purveyor dares to question why the US supports this infamous entity.
Thus, while Fox did manage to throw Pompeo a hard ball in this interview, it was the wrong hardball, addressing a very secondary issue in the grand scheme of geopolitics.
The big issue here is the fact that the US has always favoured the Saudis and ignored their barbarian behaviour, at least ever since President Nixon concluded what I call the petrodollar agreement with King Faisal in 1973, which essentially made the US military a mercenary force in the hire of the Saudis. I have posted both here at New Silk Strategies and at Quora a common sense explanation of the relationship between this petrodollar agreement and US military policy since the conclusion of the agreement in 1973. Naturally, no news outlets, including of course, Fox News, and no US politician has ever touched upon the relationship between the coddling of the Saudis and the US Wars waged against Saudi enemies who were, however, in no way enemies of the American people. And let’s face it: refusing to cover critical areas in news reporting is censorship and has no place in a republic claiming to be of the people, by the people and for the people.
Now you may recall that, when Putin met MBS at the G20 summit, he high-fived the prince, grinning from ear to ear. Western Neocons/Neoliberals predictably commented that the two leaders were kindred spirits because they were both murderers, and reminded the readers for the umpteenth time that Putin had supposedly ordered the poisoning of Sergey Skripal and his daughter Yulia. But this commentator needs reminding that no link between this poisoning and the Russian Federation was ever established and that the MI6 would have had all the motive in the world to perpetrate the murder – in order to frame Russia – while Russia certainly did not need another sanction slapped on it. The UK government said it was “highly likely” that Russia had ordered the poisoning, just as the West had declared it highly likely that the Russians had shot down Malaysian flight MH-17 over eastern Ukraine, although that was not at all likely since Russia had no motive for doing this, while Ukraine had every reason to do so and lay the blame on Russia. Further, the shoot-down was done with a Buk, with which Ukraine’s arsenal bristles. Lavrov likes to repeat this phrase “highly likely” derisively, even when speaking Russian.
But getting back to Putin’s overly friendly greeting for MBS, the big story regarding Saudi has always been its exclusive use of the US dollar in international oil trade and its keeping all reserves in Treasuries – whereas from the Russian and BRICS standpoint, the story is how to persuade Saudi to wean itself off the dollar and start using non-dollar currencies such as the rouble or the yuan, or even the euro, in its oil trade. This desire to bring Saudi over to its side would explain why Putin wants to be friends with MBS, and this critical juncture, with the US Senate condemning MBS for his suspected involvement in the Kashoggi murder and the shunning of MBS by most Western leaders at the G20, is the obvious time for Putin to turn on the charm to an isolated MBS, who would be emotionally vulnerable to any friendly gesture at this summit. Hence Putin’s big friendly grin and high five. Yet all msm commentaries remained on the superficial level, never mentioning the fact that Putin was trying to win MBS over to his (and China’s) side in the geopolitical chess match, and particularly the de-dollarization effort.
This issue is really key, even more so than the military issues in Syria. Once the dollar is unseated as the world reserve currency, the US is just a step away from losing its ability to lash out with sanctions at insubordinates. The world would be infinitely more economically and politically secure and the sovereignty of nations would be greatly enhanced in such a multipolar world. But the msm never even grazed this issue. CNN's political analyst for example, made it all about Trump, who, as Russia knows, is irrelevant in this and most other geopolitical contexts.
Newsweek also completely failed to see beneath the surface, making the Putin-MBS high-five about morality – as if US msm had ever condemned Saudi for its central role in ISIS and Al-Qaeda terror and in the slaughter of innocent civilians in Yemen. As if the US, including the Senate – which has always embraced Saudi wholeheartedly and even aided and abetted it throughout its long bloody history in the Middle East, and had in the decades since the 70s, been party to the slaughter of a half-million civilians in different countries without being able to articulate why – had been the moral standard bearer all along!
Vince Dhimos answered the question on Quora: Is China a bigger threat to Western democracy than Russia?
False question. There is no such thing as democracy in the West and there is therefore no way either Russia or China could threaten said democracy. (The US is ruled by state and non-state agents beyond the control of the US people).
Here is a list of agents (the Shadow Government) who rule the US, ignoring and defying the will of the people:
Saudi Arabia, working silently in the background to implement the petrodollar agreement, foisting disastrous foreign policies and wars on the US (as explained previously at Quora: https://www.quora.com/What-were-the-US-and-Wests-interests-for-the-removal-of-Mr-Bashar-al-Assad-and-the-funding-and-arming-of-the-groups-that-opposed-him)
Israel, via AIPAC lobby and ADL and media (AIPAC is an unregistered foreign lobby, operating unregistered in contravention of US law to induce lawmakers and presidents to support Israeli policy, including the shoot to kill policy against unarmed protesters— see Big Religion below)
The Corporate Media, which works overtime to foment anti-Russia hate that can lead to war and disastrous economic and financial policies that are bankrupting the country, creating economic bubbles and threatening the world economy.
The terminally gullible public that swallows the swill of said Corporate Media and tacitly accepts the interference of AIPAC in the government. You need to understand that the so-called "Deep State," or Corporate America, could not survive another day without the support of indoctrinated Americans.
The arms manufacturers, via their lobbies (breaking the national bank with runaway defence spending)
Big Business (which, together with Wall Street – see below – has blown a stock market bubble that seems to be collapsing at this very moment)
Wall Street (which, like Big Business, together with Wall Street – see below – has blown a stock market bubble that seems to be collapsing at this very moment)
The Federal Reserve Board (whose policies have led to an irresponsible unpayable debt, galloping inflation and dangerous bubbles, for example, in stocks and housing)
Opinion-shaping think tanks like the Atlantic Council (the propaganda arm of NATO), the CFR and many others, the vast majority of which have declared Russia a “threat” and condemn the announced pull-out from Syria, never mind that ISIS was on the verge of driving the Syrian army into the sea when the Russian air force arrived just in the nick of time in September 2015. Funny how ISIS had grown so strong despite the valiant efforts of the US Coalition’s War on Terror purportedly waged to eliminate it.
Big Religion (which has rammed “Christian” Zionism down the throats of most Evangelicals, who are considered heretics if they fail to embrace it, even though it is clearly non-scriptural. I explained previously at Quorum why this is so https://www.quora.com/Why-does-Israel-support-terrorists-in-Syria/answer/Vince-Dhimos)
The gullible followers of the above-mentioned Big Religion who, in the Evangelical community, instead of heeding what their Commander-in-Chief said in Matthew 23:39, send the modern secular Israel the message: you are the Chosen Ones and can do no wrong. We will send you lethal arms with which to kill your neighbours. Never mind the commandment in Leviticus, in your own scriptures, to love God with all your heart and all your mind and all your soul and to love your neighbour as yourself. We mega-church goers decide who goes to heaven and who does not.
So is the Catholic Church helpful in this regard? No. The pope has called the Putin-Assad alliance “dangerous” (without specifying why) but has never criticised the Saudi-US alliance. Assad is the most Christian-friendly Muslim leader in the world, while Christian worship (even in the private of one’s home!) is banned in Saudi. The pope is simply rubbr-stamping US foreign policy. Further discussion here.
The White House and its bully pulpit, which – via the msm – constantly supports disastrous warlike foreign policies and disastrous economic policies that widen the gap between rich and poor
The Congress and Senate, which likewise spread propaganda – via the msm – that have the same effect as the White House’s pronouncements, persuading voters to accept these bad policies by making them appear rational even though they are insane
The CIA, NSA and other agencies beyond the control of the elected officials, of the public, and of the law.
Hollywood. Generally, with few exceptions, when a popular US movie includes a scene involving the US armed forces, the bias is positive. For example, in the movie Bird Box, there is a scene of an Iraqi war vet who decribes how he and his men lovingly escorted an Iraqi man and his son to the local school every day to protect them from terrorist attacks. The vet never even hints at the extreme violence perpetrated by the US that bombed hundreds of thousands of civilians in that country. Sure, there were lots of good men among the US troops in Iraq, but the impression created by the movie is that the US military was only doing good in Iraq. There is a whole article dedicated to the close ties between Hollywood and the US military. https://www.theguardian.com/film/2009/jul/06/us-military-hollywood
The first above video, from nuwan.net shows the NATO bombing of the Grdelica bridge in the NATO war against Serbia. The footage stops just before the train is deliberately hit by the NATO bomb. 14 were killed in this senseless slaughter from the air. NATO claims it was an accident. The second video, from annatar, is for those who wish to learn the history of the NATO crimes against Serbia. It is mind-boggling that anyone anywhere still wants their country to be part of NATO after the devastation they caused in Europe. It's ok to cry...
Our translation from eadaily.com/ru with a commentary [and notes in square brackets] by Vince Dhimos follows.
About 13.5 thousand people were killed or went missing during the NATO war against Serbia known as the Kosovo war. It was apparently fought for no other reason than to punish the Serbian Orthodox for their brotherly association with the Russian Christians and for daring to fight back against the ethnic Albanian terrorists in Kosovo.
Just imagine if Russia had had at that time the military power it has today. Probably none of the urban devastation would have happened and Serbia would still be intact. Today, almost every one of the ancient churches in Kosovo, the cradle of Serbian Christianity, has been either destroyed or badly damaged by the Muslim terrorists who now rampage in that region. Ethnic Serbs are persecuted and live precariously. The Muslim terrorists enjoy the full protection of NATO, the US and the EU.
Here is a report on some of the destruction of Serbian churches since the war:
“Together with the 112 churches already destroyed or heavily damaged since the beginning of the UNMIK "peace mission" in June 1999, over 130 Orthodox holy shrines in Kosovo and Metohija have been destroyed or demolished.”
Now, to make matters worse, the Muslims in the self-proclaimed Republic of Kosovo want their own army, which will threaten the rest of Christian Serbia. Will the Russians help this time?
They will if invited. Russia does not invade countries – despite Western lies to the contrary.
Dear Reader, you saw how GW Bush’s war in Iraq led to the banishment, persecution and murder of the Assyrian Christians who had lived in relative peace with their Muslim neighbours for millennia. And you saw how the US-instigated wars in Iraq, Syria and Libya led not only to more persecution and death of Middle Eastern Christians and other minorities, but also to the mass migration of Muslims, many of them radical Islamists, to Europe, where they dilute and displace Christian culture and are allowed special privileges to impose their own culture, aided by local governments. This should raise all kinds of red flags as to the true intentions of the bipartisan US elitists who instigate and wage the wars in the Middle East and elsewhere and who govern the entire West. Yet, the absurd notion that this can all be changed by voting for one of the parties that wreaked this havoc in your lives, or that a member of the elite class and oligarchy can save the world still prevails. The fact is, without Russia’s intervention, starting in September 2015, there would have been no significant change in US and NATO policies anywhere. At that time, despite the phony "War on Terror," ISIS was about to drive the Syrian army into the sea. Without Russia, Syria would be inundated with ISIS head choppers and the US military would be saying it is unfortunately unable to stop them but “we are trying,” just as they now say about Afghanistan.
We have shown here that the very elites who brought on the destruction have been the ones to recognize the superiority of Russian power and have warned that it is well past time to negotiate instead of constantly provoking the Russians with sanctions and negative press.
Serbia needs a Russian military contingent
Russian military presence in Serbia will prevent military escalation of the conflict in Kosovo
The fact that the situation in the Balkans was included in the agenda of the December 17 meeting of the Security Council of the Russian Federation indicates that this region is a focus of Russian national security interests. In addition to the military-political problems associated with the expansion of NATO in the Balkans, the likely military exacerbation of the Kosovo conflict will lead to massive refugee flows, a sharp increase in the activity of terrorist and extremist groups, as well as increased drug trafficking. In provoking the bloody chaos in the Balkans, which threatens to collapse the EU itself, the Americans obviously aim to teach a lesson to their own European allies, who do not always follow the American course, and establish their position as a continental gendarme of Europe. But for Moscow, for which many European countries still remain economically important partners, such a scenario is completely unacceptable. Therefore, the Kosovo conflict now holds a special place in the sphere of the interests of the Russian Federation’s national security.
Adopted under the auspices of the United States in Pristina on December 14 this year, the decision to transform the Kosovo Security Forces into a fully-fledged Kosovo “army” essentially throws the military exacerbation of the Kosovo conflict into high gear. However, it is still possible to prevent a direct clash of the Serbian military with the Kosovo Albanians. This will require the creation of military-strategic parity, in which any armed provocations of Kosovo-Albanian separatists will be dealt a crushing retaliatory strike by the Serbian army. The main problem lies in the American military aid to Pristina [capital of the self-proclaimed Republic of Kosovo], as well as the possibility of direct intervention in the conflict by the NATO military group on the side of the Kosovo Albanians, as already occurred in 1999. In this scenario, the Serbian army will not be able to cope with the military tasks assigned to it to defend the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the state. However, there is a way out of this dangerous situation that will minimize the likelihood of direct military intervention by the United States and NATO in a possible regional conflict.
This approach would be to deploy a Russian military contingent on the territory of central Serbia, to provide operational control of the situation and assistance to the Serbian military in the modernization and technical re-equipment of the country's armed forces. To date, the American military base Bondsteel, located on the occupied Serbian territory, has actually become the training centre for the shock fist of the Kosovo Albanians. A Russian military presence would be able to ensure parity in Serbia and the region, so that the incitement of military provocations with proxy [Muslim] Kosovo-Albanian separatists by the US and NATO would have negative consequences for the warmongers themselves. Creating a military balance in Serbia is necessary as a starting point for the further de-escalation of the Kosovo conflict, and for the protection of Serbian citizens living in the occupied territories [the Russian author is referring to Serbian territory actually occupied by the US and NATO. This will sound odd to Westerners who have been indoctrinated to think of NATO as an ally of the Serbs rather than an occupier, but indeed, it is occupation and it is dangerous to the interests of Serbs].
Currently, the EU foreign service with the support of the United States and NATO insists that the Serbian leadership sign a so-called “agreement on a general normalization of relations” with Pristina, which would become the basis for accepting a self-proclaimed Kosovo to NATO, the UN and other international organizations. The movement in Belgrade in the wake of Western demands is causes a split in Serbian society and great dissatisfaction in the Serbian Orthodox Church. The thousands of processions that took place in Belgrade on December 8 and 15 of this year clearly demonstrate that the social conflict in Serbia has turned into open forms of civil protest.
All these Serbian domestic political circumstances are an unfavourable backdrop for the visit of the Russian President to Serbia, on which official Belgrade actively insists. However, in the current situation, a coordinated reboot may occur if Belgrade decisively refuses to sign any kind of separate deals with Kosovo Albanians and requests Moscow to provide military assistance, including the deployment of Russian troops in Serbia to ensure the security of the country and the region.
Vince Dhimos answered a question in Spanish at Quora. Our translation below.
V. Dhimos on Quora:
What do you think of the current situation of Jerusalem and the fact that Trump recognizes it as the capital of Israel?
There are two important reasons why Trump – along with every other US president – is pro-Israel.
1 - AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobby that operates illegally in the US. All foreign lobbies are required by law to register as foreign lobbies with the US government. But the entire US government, including Congress, the Senate, the White House and all bureaucracies have great fear of AIPAC and do not dare to enforce the law to force this organization to register as a foreign lobby. Thus, the American public is led to believe that the lobby is not foreign. Almost all presidents have been elected thanks to the campaign donations of AIPAC.
According to the law, a nonconnected PAC (political action committee like AIPAC that is not associated with a party) can only make a donation per candidate of $5,000. However, AIPAC bypasses this law by forming subordinate PACs, which then each donate as much as $5,000 to any candidate. Because of this loophole, these scofflaws are able to donate unlimited funds, giving them virtually unlimited power.
If a candidate refuses to support Israel if elected, such a candidate almost always loses because AIPAC, in this case, wages an all-out smear campaign against the candidate, investigating his background and exposing anything in his past history that could be construed as offensive, or calling him anti-Semitic. Trump, for example, made a speech before AIPAC and promised to support Israel unconditionally. In effect he was saying that he would support the state even in its crimes, such as shooting unarmed Palestinian protesters, illegally building settlements in Palestine, and launching rocket attacks on Syria. And since Israel (along with Saudi Arabia) considers Iran an enemy, Trump continually said that Iran was a “terror sponsor,” even though this was not true (Iran not only opposed ISIS and Al-Qaeda for religious reasons but in fact sent troops to fight these terrorists in Syria). In fact, the most egregious supporter of terror in the Middle East have always been American “allies” such as Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states, which Trump also supports unconditionally. Thus Trump was willing to risk a disastrous war with Iran just to please Israel.
2 - “Christian” Zionism. It is estimated that about 80% of all American Evangelicals believe that modern Israel is the Israel prophesied in Ezekiel 37 and therefore believe that God wants them to support this secular state -- even though Jesus never suggested his followers should do this (and even indicated quite the opposite in Matt. 23:39). The vast majority of Evangelicals supported Trump as a candidate and many of them still support him as president because they knew that, of all American presidents, he is the strongest supporter of modern Israel. The problem with Evangelical Zionism is that it is not supported on the actual text of the Bible. Ezekiel 37:24 says:
And David my servant shall be king over them; and they all shall have one shepherd: they shall also walk in my judgments, and observe my statutes, and do them.
So what is the problem here? The problem is that Ezekiel’s description of the resurrected Israel does not correspond to the real modern Israel in any way at all. Firstly, David is not the king of Israel (in fact, Israel does not have a king, and King David has been dead for millennia). Secondly, according to Haaretz, a Reuters poll shows that 65% of Israelis do not have any religion and therefore could not possibly be “walking according to God’s laws”. American Evangelicals are clearly deceived.
However, because these confused people support Trump, he believes that he must do whatever they want, and they want Jerusalem to be the capital of Israel. The problem here is that Jerusalem is also a holy city for the Muslims because it is the site of the al-Aqsa mosque, from where, according to legend, Mohammed rode a black horse to heaven.
Like the US Congress, the UN must respect the sovereignty of each member, and therefore cannot recognize only one religion. Thus there is no way the world could ever be forced to accept a religion-based policy regarding Jerusalem or Israel. Trump’s policy is therefore wishful thinking and will not succeed in the long run. But it has already led to bloody conflicts between the Jews and Arabs in Jerusalem and the conflict will not end there.
If a war breaks out with Iran, this will be perhaps the most egregious example of a religious war of the kind that has plagued humankind since the beginning of time.
Have you ordered your Putin calendar yet? Amazon has them:
Following is our translation of an article from ria.ru by analyst Ivan Danilov with commentary by Vince Dhimos. Danilov’s article is a commentary on an article by Richard Haass from Foreign Affairs entitled How a World Order Ends.
This article will come as a shock for those who recall that Haass worked in GW Bush’s National Security Council and that prior to that, Bush had considered Haass for the post of Secretary of State but that this idea was criticised severely due to a paper Haass had written entitled Rethinking Sovereignty suggesting that national boundaries were superfluous and should be “rethought.” For this reason, Bush voters rightfully thought of Haass as a radical liberal who was out of touch with the real people.
This earlier idea was miles removed from the Richard Haass we encounter in the latest article on which Danilov’s commentary is based. Though Danilov’s analysis does not include it, the following quote from Haass’ Foreign Affairs article is a nod to the concept of the multipolar world as enunciated in Putin’s Munich address of 2007:
“From 1815 until the outbreak of World War I a century later, the order established at the Congress of Vienna defined many international relationships and set (even if it often failed to enforce) basic rules for international conduct. It provides a model of how to collectively manage security in a multipolar world.”
In this multipolar world that Putin advocates, it is precisely the sovereignties of all nations that are valued. Thus Haass seems to have turned 180 degrees since suggesting “rethinking sovereignty.” I wrote previously at New Silk Strategies:
“Putin was born into a monopolar world and has meanwhile ushered in a multipolar world, a concept referenced since then by the documents of almost all major Western academic and political institutions, eg, the EU, prestigious universities such as Yale, Royal Institute for International Relations, University of Oslo, and many more. A paper by the World Economic Forum has a chapter devoted the Multipolar World. The World Bank has published a document titled ‘Multipolarity: The New Global Economy.’ And so on. Western institutions are giving credit to Putin’s Russia for its creation of the concept of a Multipolar World, even as the politicians of the countries represented by these institutions are still obsessed with “stopping Putin.’”
Now Richard Haass adds his name to the list of distinguished thinkers bowing to Putin.
The CFR has long been identified as part of the Deep State. Now, in the Age of Trump, it is perhaps fitting that this group should split with the president over his tenacious insistence on preserving America’s hegemon status. After all, Trump is thought by his acolytes to be embattled by the Deep State.
In reality, though, both political parties are equally invested in the maintenance of US power and prestige at all costs, and, as Haass reminds us, the fanatical dedication to the concept of America First by this administration, and also by the rest of the US elites, is actually causing the US to lose power and prestige faster than any outside agency could do. And yet we may not forget that Bush, Clinton and Obama were no less dedicated to the abuse of US power, as witnessed in Iraq, Afghanistan, Kosovo and Syria, where the emphasis was less on fighting terror than on taking out governments that failed to bend to American demands and expectations.
Head of the "factory of American power": we will not defeat Russia
Ivan Danilov, author of the blog Crimson Alter
When the leader of the most famous, influential, and elite "think tank" of the United States declares that the world order based on American hegemony is dying and cannot be saved, it is worth listening to its position. If the head of the same analytical centre, who became famous for drawing up strategies for the CIA and the State Department, declares that the success of Vladimir Putin in Crimea was a moment of "dramatic failure" of the new world order, then such an analysis should be heeded twice. And the most interesting thing is that the entire leading article, in which the chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations (Richard Haass) outlined all these thoughts, more closely resembles the monologue of a doctor trying to reassure a hysterical patient who has just been informed about a terrible diagnosis.
In order to understand how important the addition of such uncharacteristic theses to the American information repository is, it is necessary to briefly recall how the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) differs from other American NGOs. Firstly, this is a very old analytical centre created by the American-British political elite in 1921, under the auspices of the Woodrow Wilson administration. Secondly, the CFR is an organization whose signatory members sometimes could not hide their extremely contemptuous attitude towards democracy and ordinary people of the planet and promoted the idea that a certain club or class of “chosen” intellectuals should make key decisions themselves - or to supply elected politicians with properly interpreted information that will shape their decisions. One of the founders and perhaps the main public face of the Council on Foreign Relations, an American columnist, presidential adviser of Wilson and eminent propaganda theorist Walter Lippmann became famous for inventing the concept of “building consent” - that is, scientifically based mass use of the media as an instrument for managing public opinion and political processes. Lippmann himself wrote in 1922 that the ability to "build consent" (that is, achieve consent without the audience noticing manipulation, and doing it literally "by a mass production method") is a technology that will radically overturn democratic systems "more powerfully than any revolution." Thirdly, the Council on Foreign Relations is an NGO in which the Rockefeller clan, the Ford dynasty and the Warburg family (through Warburg Pinkus) have invested and are still investing serious funds, and the think tank itself is very proud of it and is the coordinator of research programs of the Rockefeller Foundation. And the final stroke in the picture: The Council on Foreign Relations prepares personnel for the American political system. Notables amongst the analysts and researchers of the council who owe their career to it, are CIA Director Allen Dulles and his brother, Secretary of State John Dulles. At the height of the Cold War, more than half of State Department employees were members of this Rockefeller think tank and thus it might not be very clear where key decisions on US foreign policy are actually made. Many conspiracy theories are associated with the activities of the Council, but conspiracy is not required to explain and evaluate its impact. It will suffice to look at the list of the current members of this organization and note the amount of research that it conducted for various government agencies to conclude that such a “collective outsourced brain” will under any circumstances greatly influence the political decisions of the American elite.
For the reasons outlined above, the chairman of the CFR has the moral right to speak with the American elite in an instructive tone and lecture it about how the world really works. In a sense, the article by Chairman Richard Haass is a kind of distilled position of that intellectual part of the American elite, which played practically a key role in the US victory in the Cold War. Mr. Haass strongly urges the American elite to calm down and accept the fact that the train has left and that trying to salvage the world order with the American hegemon at its head is useless, dangerous and pointless. Moreover, the chief American analyst has a proposal for a constructive strategy for Washington, but it is unlikely to find understanding among American politicians.
The key thesis of the article is: “World orders expire by long-term deterioration, not by sudden collapse. And just as maintaining the order depends on effective statecraft and effective action, good policy and proactive diplomacy can help determine how that deterioration unfolds and what it brings. But for this to happen something needs to happen beforehand: recognition that the old world order is never coming back and that efforts to resurrect it will be in vain. As with any ending, acceptance must come before one can move on."
The CFR chairman points to the parallels between the death of the Vienna system of international relations (the so-called Concert of Europe after the Napoleonic Wars) and the decline of the current world order. Mr. Haass even argues that there is a symbolic connection between these situations - the Vienna system died in the context of the Crimean War, and the current order was dealt a serious blow precisely after Crimea returned to Russia. It is noteworthy that this influential American expert does not share the official American propaganda line: he stresses that from the Russian standpoint, NATO expansion (as well as intervention in Iraq and especially in Libya) was a violation of the rules of the game and this explains the subsequent actions of the Russian side. He also emphasized that throughout the world, including in its “liberal” part, discontent with the United States is growing: “Resentment over the United States’ exploitation (status – Ed.) of the dollar to impose sanctions is growing, as is concern over the country’s accumulation of debt.”
According to Mr. Haass, the US has made a huge number of mistakes in foreign and domestic policy, and the economic changes caused by globalization are creating additional problems for America. In addition, the United States has lost its positive global image and now it must pay the price for it.
The recommendations of the CFR Chairman are straightforward and rational: since the degradation of the world order cannot be stopped and reversed, this process needs to be managed. The US is invited to work on “integrating China and Russia” into the new configuration of world relations, and this integration must necessarily involve a mixture of compromises, incentives and resistance to China and Russia. At the same time, the American political elite is trying to convey an important idea: what the 21st century will be like depends largely on the success of these integration efforts.
Americans continue to look through the list of existential - that is, deadly - threats to their country. Russia was on it already, so was China ... What remains?
Mr. Haass reserved the bitterest pill for the end of his text: the American elite is being asked to start holding back at last in foreign and domestic policy and try to restore (!) at least some of the lost respect and image of the "power of good." This will require "reducing US public debt, rebuilding infrastructure, improving public education, investing in social programs, attracting talented immigrants" and many other measures that the American elite definitely will not take. “The United States cannot effectively promote order in the world if they are divided at home, if they are distracted by internal problems and lack resources,” Richard Haass writes. But, looking at the current American elite, it is difficult to dismiss the feeling that he will not find within it understanding listeners who are ready to restore the American image, restrain themselves from foreign policy adventures, and also seek compromises and offer concessions to Russia and China.
The American expert community has long cultivated a sense of exclusivity in the American elite and is now reaping the bitter fruits of its effective work. Pride is a great drug, but a very bad adviser. However, regardless of whether American politicians listen to the advice of analysts of the "Rockefeller think tank" or not, an important conclusion can be made: even the best American minds do not see a realistic way to save the old world order. Thus, all of Moscow’s efforts to dismantle American hegemony should be continued. On the ruins of American autocracy, Russia will be able to leave beautiful graffiti, and, as practice shows, dismantling the old world order is a profitable business. At least the Americans were able to earn good money by dismantling the USSR. What goes around comes around.
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Following is our translation from newzfeed.ru with a commentary by Vince Dhimos,
We showed you here how Ukraine became the poorest state in Europe by following the US and EU Pied Pipers at the Maidan and staging an illegal and violent coup against a democratically elected but pro-Russian president. Kiev had no experience working closely with the US and Europe but followed the lure of potential EU and NATO membership and the glitter of US wealth.
And they got exactly what they asked for from these con artists, who neither gave them EU membership nor allowed their Nazi sympathizers to join NATO. It was a blind date. Neither side knew what awaited them, which turned out to be very little. Like much of the former Soviet Bloc, the naïve citizens assumed that, since the US hated and feared Russia, all they had to do was play along and they would be rewarded richly. But it turns out that Russophobia is a thankless job. You get no real protection and the Western prosperity doesn’t wear off on you. In fact, being a US puppet has just the opposite effect, ie, poverty and tears of remorse.
In all cases where these former satellites of the Soviet Union peeled off and cleaved to the West, their dreams were shattered. It turns out that their former close ties to resource-rich Russia had been their bread and butter. But there was no turning back. Weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth are their future.
The tragedy is that, thanks to their naïveté, they only learned too late. Ukraine was doing fairly well thanks to its ties to Russia. It only makes sense. Russia was right next door and was relatively rich, and the US was far away and was reeling under a massive debt from profligate spending on bombs, ships and planes to murder countless souls throughout the world. Who would trust such a nation?
According to the below article, not only Ukraine, but the Baltic states also trusted it, and now they are paying the price.
After many years in the Baltic States, they finally began to calculate the losses from Moscow’s response to sanctions. Local experts concluded that there was no longer any “Russian money” but they could not earn their own either. In the end, the Balts began to observe real panic over the fact that the country's economy is on its deathbed. Experts note that the Baltic countries have ceased to be dependent on Russia, and now they have fallen on really hard times.
As a result, following Moscow’s political and economic retaliatory measures, the state of the Republics is extremely critical. However, retaliatory sanctions were imposed by Moscow only after the Baltic states themselves challenged Russia, introducing a list of their restrictive measures against it.
At first, the Balts were inspired by the magnificent beginning of their development in the period of 2000–2008, having a GDP growth of about 10% per year. At that time, these Republics could compete even with China and the countries of Europe in terms of this index.
Latvia began to develop the service sector and to ship imported goods. In the port of Riga alone, more than 20% of the country's GDP was earned. Thus the Russian side actively used these sea harbors to transport their cargoes. Companies from Europe also invested in them, thanks to which the state literally “thrived and prospered” until 2008. And the locals were happy with their income, which had grown more than 10 times.
Oil exports accounted for about 25% of GDP in the Baltics, which was a quarter of the income of the population of the Republics. Therefore, we can safely say that it was thanks to Russian oil that the inhabitants of the Baltic countries then had such high salaries. Coal, household goods and chemical products also went through Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. It seems that Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia mediated between the Russian Federation and Europe, earning more than half of their GDP from this.
After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Lithuania was nevertheless in a rather precarious position. However, the Europeans provided the country with investment and cheap loans, thanks to which it could, like Latvia, earn income through transit between the Russian side and European countries.
In time, despite this assistance from the Russian Federation, anti-Russian sentiments continued to be observed in the Baltics. In the end, after all the unjust actions of the Baltic states, Moscow also decided to retaliate, gradually declining he services of the Baltic ports and switching to its own.
In the Russian Federation, the modernization of domestic harbours and the construction of new ones began at an accelerated pace. Moscow has increased the capacity of its ports from 10 million to 236 TEU. It was then that the prosperity of the Baltic countries began to end. Countries have lost both GDP growth of 10% and a large part of the working-age population, which simply did not want to sit by and watch how their state decline.
Following is our translation of an article from mirnovostey.info.
QUOTES from translated text below:
“I hope this basic text [Putin’s 2007 Munich speech] will be included among those recommended by American intelligence on the eve of the meeting.”
“The crucial moment is now. The need to ‘take a fresh look at foreign policy’ is being discussed today, even in the United States.”
The author is right that even US commentators are talking about the need for a new foreign policy. Examples:
The Atlantic does indeed discuss the need for a new foreign policy but contends that the new policy must be written by the Democrats, the party that insists that Russia is an enemy. Not much can be expected from the partisans on either side of the aisle.
Many articles in Foreign Policy demand changes in US foreign policy, and one criticises Trump’s refusal to talk to Putin at the G-20 summit. Of course, FP takes the standard view that Russia is an “aggressor” and says that a meeting between Trump and Putin would have given Trump a chance to confront Putin, so this article is misguided because it ignores the fact that the recent incursion of Ukrainian military vessels into the Russian territory was an illegal provocation.
The bad news is this. Firstly, the Russian author optimistically hopes that US intel will brief Trump on Putin’s 2007 Munich speech. This will not happen. To US policy makers and pols, Putin’s statements are anathema, they are all propaganda, and listening to or reading them will “threaten democracy” or worse. Secondly, the author of the translated article claims that there is discussion of the need for a new foreign policy in the US, and though this is true in general, there is no evidence that policy makers want to relinquish US power or even wage fewer wars than in the past. Things are therefore much more critical than many Russian observers think. I did a search with the search terms
us needs new foreign policy
and found not even the slightest hint that the publications informing foreign policy makers in the US even know what Putin’s “multipolar world” is, let alone understand the need for a world that is not virtually fully controlled by Washington and Wall Street. I have always said that no necessary change in US policy will ever come from within the US, ie, from the higher levels of political power or from the clueless grassroots. The change must come, for better or worse, from the other two main world powers, China and Russia, and from their partners, such as Europe.
As for how the Russians and Chinese might eventually influence the US, the salient example is found in the words of Special Operations chief Gen. Raymond Thomas, who, in a high level speech, let slip that Russia [he did not name the country but it was understood] had created in Syria “the most aggressive electronic warfare environment on the planet.” He bitterly lamented that the EW systems were disrupting the operation of his EC-130 recon planes, rendering them virtually useless. US politicians and influencers only understand power, and any change in US foreign policy will come about thanks to a show of power by the countries they mistakenly call “adversaries.” These “adversaries” are by no means the enemy of the American people but only of the warmongering elites.
Gen. Thomas is one of the few US officials who may, perhaps, see the handwriting on the wall, and not because he listened to reason but because he ran up against that wall.
Putin's prophecy came true. The whole West is abuzz
The need for a wonderful Russian radar station would not have emerged if 10 years ago America and the West led by it had listened to Putin’s speech at the Munich Security Conference. At that time, the president of Russia warned the United States against striving for world domination through sole leadership. Instead, Putin proposed to ensure global security through international law as a derivative of the moral and ethical basis of mankind. No other approach will work.
"I believe that for the modern world, a unipolar model is not only unacceptable, but impossible in the first place. And not only because with sole leadership in the modern world, neither military-political nor economic resources will be enough. But more importantly, the model itself is not workable, because there is not and cannot be a moral basis of modern civilization on its basis,” said the head of the Russian state.
That is, nothing amoral will work. This seems to be a simple idea, but it was beyond the scope of both George W. Bush and Barack Obama. For world domination, they got involved in shameful wars and lost them. The United States itself paid its price for this disastrous policy.
I'm not talking about waste of resources here. The country has been split, losing its moral unity. The price is the lying American press and the hate rampaging across America. Actually, exactly this result was predicted by Putin ten years ago, speaking of the destructiveness of the unipolar world.
"No matter how this term is embellished, it ultimately means only one thing in practice: it is one centre of power, one centre of military might, one centre of decision-making. This is the world of one owner, one sovereign. And this is ultimately pernicious not only for everyone within this system, but also for the sovereign itself, because it destroys it from the inside,” said Putin.
These words could be called prophetic, because they came true. But a seer relies on some guesswork, astrology, or faith. Not so with Putin. His support is knowledge and respect for human civilization, its experience and potentials. Plus, of course, the awareness of Russia as a stronghold, which will not allow anyone to penetrate it, completely ignoring everything. The Americans, however, throughout these last ten years, have pushed into the Middle East, North Africa, in Ukraine – hoping for something new. The result is the same. Putin’s words, spoken 10 years ago, sound impeccably accurate today.
“And what’s the result? Unilateral, illegitimate actions often failed to solve a single problem. Moreover, they became a generator of new human tragedies and hotbeds of tension. Judge for yourself: there are no fewer wars and local and regional conflicts than before – many more in fact," said Putin.
In general, if Trump really wants “to get along with Russia,” as he says, then it is better to rely on generally accepted principles on which to build relationships.
Now they are saying on both sides that preparations for the meeting of the leaders of our countries are not yet underway. If so, then Trump can start by personally familiarizing himself with the speech of Russian President Putin on the program in Munich in 2007. I hope that basic text will be included among those recommended by American intelligence in the lead-up to the meeting. Without it, the report package will definitely be incomplete, especially since there is a lot about the USA in the text.
"We see an increasing disregard for the fundamental principles of international law. Moreover, certain norms, and almost the entire system of law of one state, above all, of course, the United States, crossed the national borders in all spheres: in economics, in politics, and in the humanitarian sphere, and is imposed on other states. Who would want this?" said Vladimir Putin.
Actually, then he directly proposed to discuss, “painstakingly” work out and agree upon a new, modern architecture of global security. "I am convinced that we have come to the crucial moment when we should seriously think about the entire global security architecture," said the Russian president.
The crucial moment is now. The need to "take a fresh look at foreign policy" is being discussed today, even in the United States. In this sense, Putin’s speech in Munich 10 years ago is an indispensable guide. It sounds fresh.
At the same time, the old American policy of supporting coups, eliminating countries and peoples is still ongoing by inertia. It has not made anyone happy yet. But a lot of blood is still flowing. Petro Poroshenko still expects that he will receive a pat on the head by America for the war, and he keeps killing.
As I was writing about the Saudi connection to US foreign policy, I was keenly aware that many Westerners think of Israel as having more clout in US affairs than Saudi, and to some extent they are right. The reason I focus so heavily on Saudi is that the petrodollar agreement signed in 1974 between Nixon and King Faisal is believed by the most prolific Western investors in Treasuries to be responsible for propping up the value of the US dollar. However, I showed here and here that the Saudi share of Treasury holdings amounts to only about one-fortieth of the value of the US sovereign debt and could not possibly have anywhere near the significance assigned to it. Certainly not enough to make US presidents bow to its kings and the US Congress, Senate and White House mould its foreign policy in the Saudis’ favour. So there is definitely something fishy going on here.
And indeed, US foreign policies favour not only the Saudis but also Israel, and roughly to the same extent. But does it not seem logical that the myth of the US-Saudi petrodollar agreement was no doubt crafted in large part for the purpose of pleasing Israel? Thus, the myth of the petrodollar agreement gave the policy makers in Washington and their Deep State drivers an excuse to forge policy that served the ulterior purpose of changing Western culture while extirpating Christianity from the Muslim world (as explained here and here). And whether or not you believe that this ulterior purpose really underlay the machinations of policy makers, you will admit it was indeed implemented and was fulfilled to a t, as witnessed by the enormous exodus of Christians from the Middle East and Kosovo and the waves of mass immigration of Muslims to Europe as a result of US-instigated or US-waged wars.
Just one of myriad examples of the enormous power wielded by Israel is the fact that this country, which boasts of being the “only democracy in the Middle East,” has an official Military Censor, of which the Jerusalem Post wrote:
“The Israeli military censor banned the publication of 271 articles in 2017 and partially or fully redacted another 2,087 news stories that had been submitted for review.”
But Israel has a long arm and its censorship also extends to other parts of the world, including the “Land of the Free,” as shown here and here (we would encourage you to click on the latter link and also to click on the link to the video embedded in the article it will bring up). In fact, many Westerners who have sought to expose Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians have been shut out of social media.
Counterpunch reports (my highlighting):
“In January of this year, MintPress News reported that Facebook spokespeople admitted that Facebook was deleting accounts, as directed by Israel and the United States. This was a natural outcome of meetings that Facebook had with some of the most extremist of Israeli officials, to establish which Facebook accounts of Palestinians and their supporters around the world were to be deleted.”
I was one of those whose pro-Palestine posts were eliminated from Twitter and I lost my account as a result. When I emailed the censor and asked why, the people behind the curtain simply sent me a list of Twitter’s rules. Which is like a prosecutor telling an accused that he violated the law and when the accused asks which one, the prosecutor sends him to the local law library and says “see for yourself.” When I asked which of the rules, I had violated, I got no further response. This total refusal to dialogue is reminiscent of the way the US and other Western governments treat foreign governments like Russia, calling it an “adversary,” blaming it for misdeeds without proof and then issuing sanctions against it.
But you know what? Censorship is a sign that the censor is incapable of debate under fair rules, and is losing the hearts and minds of the people it censors. When you can’t think of any way to defeat the truth through honest straightforward debate, you have already lost the debate and can only await the final collapse of the construct that you are defending based on ignorance of the public and information blackouts.
In the case of Palestine, the world now knows that the IDF has issued a shoot to kill order against unarmed Palestinian protesters. The Guardian was only one of many outlets to report on the IDF’s shoot to kill orders.
The Jerusalem Post reported on the IDF gleefully killing unarmed protesters and then cheering as the victims fell. The journalist quotes Israeli authorities endorsing this outright murder. The article closes:
“ ‘No wonder the soldiers behave this way when ministers, lawmakers, the media and public opinion are party to the jubilation at the mass killing of Palestinians in Gaza,’ Zahalka said.”
If it were not for the misreading of the Bible that holds Evangelicals in thrall to “Christian” Zionism, this apocalyptic nightmare would not be happening because while the US – the staunchest supporter of Israeli policies – rarely protests anything done by the Israeli government or military, this is an indirect result of a populace that believes that present day Israel is the one prophesied by Ezekiel – even though modern secular Israel in no way meets Ezekiel’s description of a people obedient to God. (If you wonder why I say this religiously based Zionism is based on a misreading of the Bible, see my straightforward explanation here).
The UN has issued more condemnations against Israel for human rights violations than against any other country since the all-white regime in South Africa fell. It is only a matter of time before the US joins the rest of the world in recognizing Israel's crimes.
Christians, it’s time for a frank, loving dialogue with our Jewish friends
“Christian” Zionists (about 80% of all Evangelicals) say they support Israel, but they do so out of fear, not love. Fear that God might withdraw His blessing. This is based on a misreading of the verse in Genesis referring to Abram, not to Israel. It is also based on a misreading of Ezekiel 37 prophesying the resurrection of Israel. Verse 24 of that chapter says the resurrected nation will be obedient to God. A Reuters poll shows that 60% of Israelis self-describe as “irreligious.” Ezekiel was obviously not talking about today’s Israel. That is where the whole construct collapses. But when Jesus said to Jerusalem “you will not see me again until you have said blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord,” He was sending a clear message to His followers to evangelize among the Jews – not send them arms to kill their neighbours. Today’s Evangelicals are too preoccupied with idolizing the secular, irreligious Israel and sending them arms to murder Palestinians to even think about evangelizing among them. This is the great sin of modern Evangelicals and if they truly loved the Jews they would not forsake this great commission.
Putinology 102. Israel sees the light
According to Bloomberg, a ranking Israeli official, has admitted the US is not “in the game” with regard to controlling Iran in Syria and that they are counting on Russia to handle the diplomatic dealing.
“The American part of the equation is to back us up,” but the U.S. currently “has almost no leverage on the ground,” Michael Oren, Netanyahu’s deputy minister for public diplomacy and a former ambassador to Washington, said in a phone interview Sunday. “America did not ante up in Syria. It’s not in the game.”
Perhaps at the beginning, when the Saudis were the most prolific user of dollars in world trade, there was some truth to the belief that they were capable of aiding the ailing dollar. But recall that at the time the deal was concluded, the Saudis and their allies had an oil embargo in place and were playing games with oil prices and hence with the US economy. Simply dropping this tampering may in fact have been sufficient to save the dollar. In fact, I have pointed out that, as of now, as the Saudi star fades, the Japanese and Chinese each hold over twice as much cash in Treasuries as the Saudis, and besides, Saudi oil reserves may be nearing their end, as witnessed by the fact that they tried to sell stocks in their oil business to raise money (but failed). SRSrocco Report, reposted at New Silk Strategies with permission, stated ominously:
“QUOTE: Saudi Arabia’s cash reserves are in free-fall and the country could have only five years of financial assets remaining due in large part to the fall in oil prices, according to a report by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).”
Never before has Saudi Arabia been in a weaker position to serve as a prop for the USD. The notion that the Saudis are suitable for this mission is looking more and more like a false myth, the true underlying motive of which must be sought.
Of course, you might retort that the Chinese are building up structures such as the Shanghai gold exchange and the Shanghai oil futures market, which are not trading in dollars, so they are working against, not for, the dollar. But I would remind the reader that China’s (and Russia’s) de-dollarization campaign is relatively new and for many years, the Chinese have held – and still hold –staggering amounts of cash in Treasuries – this chart shows China held about a half trillion in 2008 and 1.5 trillion by 2014 and today, holds well over a trillion USD. And a chart compiled by the Federal Reserve in 2012 shows, at the top of page 21, that in 2010 – during the decades-long period when the biggest investors in the world believed, or more accurately, behaved as if they believed, that the Saudis and Gulf statelets were propping up the dollar (and, BTW, China was not talking about de-dollarization then), Europe held more reserves in Treasuries than the oil exporters, while China and Japan each held over a trillion and the oil exporters held just a tad more than Japan’s 3 trillion plus. Further, as stated above, China and Japan now hold over twice as much in Treasuries as Saudi. Finally, Social Security contributors hold – albeit involuntarily – several times the amount of Treasuries as any country. The fact is, the measly half-trillion dollars in Saudi Treasuries amounts to only less than about one-fortieth of the US sovereign debt. So why are US presidents still bowing to the Saudi royals with their increasingly anemic contribution to the USD? Don’t you smell a rat here?
Every president has treated the Saudis with an inordinate, unmerited, amount of respect. Trump tops them all, having gone to Saudi on his very first state visit, dancing a diabolical-looking sword dance with the royals, and recently having, absurdly, practically blamed Iran (the no. 1 enemy of Saudi Arabia and its de facto ally Israel) for the grisly killing of WaPo journalist Jamal Kashoggi by Saudi operatives, even though the evidence has convinced much of the world that the top-ranking Saudi royals ordered the killing. Iran, of course, had nothing whatsoever to do with the murder. But Saudi is more important than truth in amoral Washington.
But surely you will have noticed that the behaviour of Washington officials from the White House on down in no way reflects the Christian principles that most Americans still profess to adhere to, while oddly, generally supporting a foreign policy that has gotten the majority of Middle East Christian communities killed or banished ever since the start of the Bush wars, and has caused a mass exodus of mostly Muslims to Europe, which diluted, and is diluting, Western – particularly Christian – culture in Europe. (An article in TheGuardian details this phenomenon).
Of course, you may well have been steeped in the belief that the US government has no business supporting Christianity or any other religion, and this is essentially true. It is true in the sense that Reagan, for example, should not have supported militarily the Christian minority in Lebanon over all other factions in the complex struggle there in the 80s because this had all the appearances of anti-Muslim support on the basis of his personal religion alone, with little thought given to the complexity of the socio-political situation on the ground – and that policy had no chance of survival in the Arab world. The upshot was a tragic loss of American lives when a Marine barracks was blown up and Reagan had to walk away from the conflict, defeated. His support for the relatively small Christian faction at the expense of all the others was simply inappropriate (as he later realized). The only sensible approach would have been to use diplomacy to bring all factions together, treating each of them with equal respect (the kind of diplomacy that is working beautifully for the Russians. BTW, it would be much more effective for the US to imitate Russian diplomacy than to engage in an arms race with Russia).
But that situation in Lebanon has nothing in common with, say, the policy of waging war on Iraq, which, before the war, had a functioning government that respected both branches of Islam as well as the Christians and other minorities (with the exception of the rebellious Kurds, who were considered terrorists). After the war, it had ISIS.
GW Bush and his cabinet had to know that by invading Iraq, he was going to upset a delicate balance that had kept the Assyrian Christians (and other minorities) safe for millennia. After all, the world already knew that the Arab world banished their Jews when Israel was declared a state in 1948, even though these indigenous Jews bore no responsibility for the removal of the Arabs from the future Jewish state by the Zionists and British do-gooders. One could therefore have expected the Christians in Iraq to suffer an analogous fate for analogous reasons, as indeed they did. Ironically, Iraqi Islamists blamed Christianity for a disaster caused by a Deep State that in fact despises Christianity. Though the Bush policy seemed on its face to be religion-neutral, it had the immediate effect of causing the persecution, murder and banishment of many of these indigenous Christians. Likewise, since it was well known that the ruling Assad family was one of the most tolerant governments in the Middle East, the anti-Assad hysteria that led to the Syrian war, which was instigated by the US support for the “moderates,” who were all radical Islamists, could have been expected to lead to the killing, persecution and banishment of Syria’s indigenous Christian population, as indeed it did. Ditto the Libyan government, which was also more religiously tolerant than most Middle Eastern Sunni-majority countries. Further, the instigators of the Middle East wars had to know that their attacks on mostly civilian populations would cause a mass exodus of Muslims to Europe, with the foreseeable disastrous effects on Western culture there. My firm conviction is that the people behind these conflicts did not accidentally cause the social chaos that emptied the countries in question of their Christian population, thrusting hordes of Muslims into Europe -- and not the more responsible and peace-loving ones, most of whom sayed behind hoping for better times and willing to help build their countries back up. Many of those who fled to Europe were in trouble wih the law back home or had participated in terror acts and were no longer welcome there.
Thus I strongly suspect that the myth of the Saudis as props for the US dollar was devised by people – whom we call the Deep State for want of a better term – whose underlying motive was not so much to shore up the USD as it was to rid the world of Western, and more specifically Christian, culture.
So who might some of these anti-Christian activists be?
Global Research drops a familiar name in the context of the Arab Spring that led to the wars:
“None [of the Arab Spring movements] were spontaneous – all required careful and lengthy (5+ years) planning, by the State Department, CIA passing through foundations, George Soros, and the pro-Israel lobby.”
Nor am I ignoring the fact that Israel and Saudi share the same interests (eg, anti-Iran racism) in the Middle East, and this fact will be further discussed as I continue to research this issue. I would also like to analyse for you the Russian response to the Kashoggi affair and to MBS following the grisly killing in the Turkish embassy.
Meanwhile, I would be grateful if readers could share their thoughts on this topic by posting in our forum. Your input will help me refine our analysis. Thanks for reading.
Definition of 4-D chess: The strategy of calling people stupid when they fail to see the genius behind behaviour that really is stupid.
This analysis is intended to explain the world to the reader. Literally, the whole world. And if the following really explains geopolitics and universal economics as controlled by Washington and Wall Street, as I assure you it does, why don’t the high-paid big shots at Wall Street Journal, New York Times, CNN, etc, explain it to you? I assure you the highest-paid ones do indeed know, and if you are in the dark about this, it’s because they won’t or can’t tell you.
New Silk Strategies explained a while back that the Saudis had been appointed as the keepers of the dollar back in the 70s under a petrodollar agreement that was responsible for the direction that each of the US-waged wars outside the New World took. The mechanism of this relationship between the Saudis and US wars and the proof of this theory is summed up here. And no, I am not forgetting the role of Israel, the arms manufacturers, the msm, Wall Street and the Fed in generally supporting war. But the myth of Saudi power over the US dollar seems to be the most powerful underlying motive for the specific direction each war took, ie, the countries invaded or the leaders targeted for removal. Further, as I showed before, none of these wars benefitted the American people in any way whatsoever, while on the whole, they cost US tax payers more money than their great grandchildren will ever be able to pay. The Saudis emerged the real winners and their violent, intolerant, terror-inspiring Wahhabism was furthered.
All of America’s billionaire investors know the Saudi myth while almost none of the little people in America have a clue. They’re running around trying like elves trying to help Donald Trump fight off the Deep State and interpreting the latest message from Q, or, on the other side of the aisle, they’re helping the Deep State take him down; or they’re supporting their favourite political flavour oblivious to the fact that both sides of the aisle are using the antipathy for each other amongst the gullible populace to disguise the Big Truth that we are addressing in this analysis.
When I first set out to analyse US monetary policy in light of the petrodollar agreement concluded between Richard Nixon and King Faisal in 1974, I was convinced that the Saudis had used this agreement to blackmail the US into fighting wars solely for them and, specifically, to help them spread their violent, intolerant sect of Wahhabism throughout the world. All evidence seemed to point that way. Bad bad Saudis.
But when you dig more deeply, unanswered questions pop up.
Recently, Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) unleashed a bombshell revelation, to wit:
“Asked about the Saudi-funded spread of Wahhabism, the austere faith that is dominant in the kingdom and that some have accused of being a source of global terrorism, Mohammed said that investments in mosques and madrassas overseas were rooted in the Cold War, when allies [read the US] asked Saudi Arabia to use its resources to prevent inroads in Muslim countries by the Soviet Union.” [my highlighting]
MBS is actually saying what many have suspected all along, namely, that the chaos that reigns throughout the Muslim world today, thanks to ISIS, al-Qaeda and the latter’s re-brandings, were not the creation of the oil exporters themselves but rather the brainchildren of Western leaders so unspeakably evil and depraved that no wickedness is beyond them. Leaders who would not only work evil but would certainly revel in it. They, the Western Dark Ones, so said the Saudi prince, caused the wars that killed at least a half-million men, women and children, almost all innocent bystanders in wars fought by US and allied pilots safely ensconced in their cockpits high above them and out of sight and out of earshot of the anguished cries and awful explosions that instantly snatched away their homes, their lives, their dreams. Even as their countrymen insouciantly scurried about their business, spending or receiving in payment the horrid blood-stained instrument at the origin of all this apocalyptic misery.
But would I take the world of a man like MBS, whom most of the world considers a heartless cold-blooded killer? No, I would not. But I am not relying on his honesty – if he has any – I am looking at how the above bombshell statement of his fits the behaviour pattern of the billionaires who have seized the reins of America and the world and ridden the pale horse over the bodies of the saints for over a century. And I recall how MBS and his kinsmen have in the past threatened to expose the Deep State and its involvement in skulduggery of various kinds, particularly in foreign affairs.
For instance, Quartz reports:
“The Saudi statement added:
The Kingdom also affirms that if it receives any action [in response to Trump’s threat of “severe punishment,” which, though empty, clearly offended him] it will respond with greater action, [NCC highlighting] and that the Kingdom’s economy has an influential and vital role in the global economy and that the Kingdom’s economy is affected only by the impact of the global economy.”
The above statement suggests very strongly that the Saudis have the dirt on the US Deep State, another reason presidents fear them and most high ranking officials avoid criticising them.
So how does this fit my theory? Like a glove.
I had mentioned previously that the petrodollar agreement is based on a myth, ie, that the Saudis are supposedly the key to the dollar’s stability. And I pointed out that the mechanism by which the Saudis were supposed to prop up the USD was their charging only USD for their oil and keeping their cash reserves in US dollars. But is this mechanism really doing the heavy lifting or is there another aspect to how the dollar is kept afloat?
To be continued
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In the following we present our translation of an article from RIA Novosti with a commentary by Vince Dhimos.
This is an excellent analysis of the heart breaking situation in Ukraine, where economic solutions to the problems real people face, such as keeping warm in the winter and having power to light their homes and cook their meals, are being sacrificed on the altar of senseless pro-Western anti-Russian politics. The following is just one of many examples.
“It is quite simple to give them [the nuclear power plants] another fifteen years of active life – all they need to do is negotiate with Russia. In other words, the question is purely procedural. However, in 2015, Petro Poroshenko banned by decree any cooperation with our country, which is why the solution to a number of vital issues was immediately suspended.” [something like refusing to talk to the other great nuclear power--Vince]
The issue of power is particularly critical for Ukraine because they are already starved for energy. A few years back, the Ukrainian government shot itself in the foot by failing to pay for their natural gas consumption. The gas was easy to steal at one time because the pipeline running from Russia to Europe passed through Ukraine, and the resourceful Ukrainians just helped themselves to as much as they wanted. Eventually, Russia did what any sensible supplier would do and shut off the spigot. This is the main reason for the Nord Stream II that is now being laid, bypassing Ukraine and other Russia-hostile countries, despite all the Western hysteria to stop it, including sanctions on every investor in the project. Never mind that stopping the project would force Europe to buy the extravagantly expensive LNG, which Trump is eager to foist on them as part of his MAGA strategy. If Europe were forced in this direction, Germany would cease to be the second biggest exporter in the world and would fall on hard times. We have pointed out before that, in the West, notably the US, economics is now reduced to politics in this brave new era. If you will recall, the US was once the biggest advocate of the so-called “free market,” where each participant competed on the bases of price, availability, ease of delivery, quality and the like economic factors. Today, though Trump complains of unfair trading policies by China, US car manufacturers are blatantly subsidized and oil and gas execs who foolishly invested in fracking ventures and lost their shirts were later bailed out by a 2017 tax law that gives these incompetents tax credits, read subsidies. The fracking process is inherently extravagant and can be profitable only in an environment of horrendously high prices at the pump – or if the government props up the investors at tax payers’ expense. BTW, the WTO considers these subsidies unfair trading practices when the product in question is exported. But who would dare enforce the law on the Exceptional US? China is the only target of these rules.
Meanwhile, the brilliant folks who run the Ukraine are paying extra to have Russian gas. Since they are too proud to buy their gas directly from Russia (politics trumps economics), they are buying Russian gas from middle men in Europe who simply reroute it to the Ukraine. Cash on the barrel head, no cheating this time.
It is not wonder that, as President Poroshenko has admitted (and as we reported here), US-backed Ukraine is the poorest country in Europe.
Once these nuclear reactors are off line, thanks to Poroshenko’s shooting himself and his country in the foot, it will be lights out for the Ukrainians who elected him.
It didn’t have to be this way.
(As usual, you won’t find this information in your msm or even the alternative press).
Ukrainian roulette for Russia: five nuclear reactors are at stake
Sergey Savchuk, for RIA Novosti
The following is not another attempt to show how bad things are in Ukraine, and particularly, it is not another rant. It is simply an analysis of the situation and an attempt to predict the possible development of events outside the context of the political situation. I will confess at once that Ukrainian specialists asked me to consider this topic, as local news resources on this issue are keeping deathly silence.
Russia saved Ukraine from a new Chernobyl. But for how long?
... At the time of the collapse of the Soviet Union, Ukraine turned out to be one of the most "atomic" states on the planet (it still ranks no. eight in the world in terms of the power generation). Ukrainians received up to forty-six percent of all electricity from their nuclear power plants inherited from the USSR. There are five of them: Zaporizhzhya, Rivne, Khmelnitsky, South Ukraine and Chernobyl. Let us separately dwell on the latter. The conviction prevails in the mass consciousness that after the 1986 technological disaster the station was stopped and the entire area around it was evacuated. This is not true. As a result of the well-known events, only the fourth power unit failed, and the other three were working well and further, generating electricity. The last (third) power unit was decommissioned back in 2000.
And now to the topic of conversation. It is known from open sources that by 2020 Ukraine will reach the end of the life of its four power units:
• Rivne NPP, the third block, term - December 2017
• Khmelnitsky NPP, first unit, term - December 2018
• South-Ukrainian NPP, the third block, term - February 2020
• Zaporizhia NPP, fifth unit, term - May 2020
VVER-1000 water-cooled reactors are installed in all of these units. It is easy to calculate that in less than two years, the leadership of Ukraine will face the question of saving or losing four gigawatts of generation all at once. To make it a little clearer: this amounts to 35 terawatts per hour, while the whole of Hungary, for example, produces 38 terawatts a year.
Naturally, Ukraine received Soviet infrastructure as a legacy from the broken family of fraternal peoples. During the years of independence in the energy sector, our neighbours did not build anything new; even the construction of the third power unit of the Khmelnitsky nuclear power plant (NPP), to which the Czech company Skoda was supposed to deliver the reactor in keeping with the political exigency, was not completed. Over the years of independence [NSS—the author is referring here to Ukraine’s independence from the Soviet Union], only two energy projects have been successfully implemented: this is the commissioning in 1995 of the sixth power unit at the Zaporozhia NPP and the fourth unit of the Rovno nuclear power plant. Of course, these projects were successful only thanks to cooperation with Russia. All other initiatives were confined to the statements of politicians and to the pages of the press.
As you know, any equipment requires constant maintenance, repair and sensitive operation. What can we say about such a complex and high-tech facility as a nuclear power plant? The issue of extending the life of Ukrainian reactors over the past few years has already been raised more than once. For example, in 2010 and 2011, the life of the first and second power units of the Rovno NPP, respectively, expired. They are reliable "old" VVER-440s. Energy infrastructure in the literal sense of the word, depends on the kind of political system in the country and the stage it is in. All reactors that heat and light Ukraine have been developed and created in the USSR, and only one country, Russia, can extend their life. More specifically, representatives of Russian production and regulation: Rosatom and Rostekhnadzor - the latter is the company that performs licensing of such facilities. No one else in the world will ever take responsibility, no matter how much they ask, or even beg.
No, of course, in theory, a conventional Mitsubishi corporation can start research and development work, but the time frame for such events usually exceeds ten years, and licensing is needed today.
Rings, Welding and Radiation
Let us explain why expiration of operation is so important. To put it quite simply, every reactor is a huge pressure cooker welded together out of steel rings. During operation, various chemical and thermal processes take place inside the reactor, which naturally cause wear and tear on the metal. Over time, excess carbon begins to accumulate in the welds of the shell. To test the potential operability of the reactor, water is drained from it and the fuel assemblies are removed. After this, the so-called "annealing" of the internal volume of the reactor is carried out, entailing raising the temperature to 475 degrees (sometimes higher). This process itself takes at least one hundred hours. After this, the shell is allowed to cool down and the most rigorous analysis of the condition is carried out, including microflaw and flaw detection, and the state of the welds is carefully checked. In the case of the Rovno VVER-440, this technology has long been worked out to the last detail by Russian nuclear scientists and allows us to extend the life of the reactor by twenty years. At the time of expiration, there were no critical disagreements between our countries, and both units received licenses for another two decades of hard work.
As for the more modern VVER-1000s, their annealing is also tested. Recently, a research group represented by Rosenergoatom, OKBM Gidropress and NRC Kurchatov Institute reported on the first successful annealing of the WWER-1000 reactor vessel in history. The results will extend their life for fifteen years. It is difficult to overestimate this event; suffice it to say that this is the most ubiquitous of all the reactors in operation. At the very moment as you read these lines, thirty-seven VVER-1000s are operating simultaneously around the world, including the four Ukrainian ones mentioned above.
What’s the problem?
Let's start with the purely technical part. To better understand the essence of the issue, the four units mentioned above shall be divided into two equal groups. In the first group we will include the third unit of Rovno and the first unit of the Khmelnitsky nuclear power plant (NPP). These are reactors, in which no changes have been made, operating on the initially defined fuel, which is produced and supplied from Russia by TVEL. It is quite simple to give them another fifteen years of active life – they need only negotiate with Russia. In other words, the question is purely procedural. However, in 2015, Petro Poroshenko banned by decree any cooperation with our country, which is why the solution of a number of vital issues was immediately suspended.
The second group is much more interesting. The third power unit of the South Ukrainian and the fifth power unit of the Zaporozhia NPP uses nuclear fuel supplied by the American company Westinghouse [this change was made by Poroshenko to please the US and spite the Russians--Vince]. And here is where the aforementioned problem begins. Rosatom and Rostekhnadzor simply cannot physically extend the life of the resource because the reactor is powered by freelance fuel. All its physical and other characteristics are classified and are the intellectual property of a foreign country. Moreover: Ukraine, of course, does not provide any data on the results of the use of American fuel. Even if we assume that Russia will still be invited as a licensor, the study of this data alone will take considerable time. For its part, Westinghouse cannot extend the life of these two reactors: the reactors and the entire plant are not their production. Dead end.
The work of all five NPPs in Ukraine is managed by the National Atomic Energy Generating Company Energoatom. But the supervisory functions are assigned to the State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine (HIARU). Here we must point out that, although the word “state” is present in the title, the leadership of the power is subject to a very arbitrary attitude. The only body to which the inspectorate submits fully and unconditionally is the IAEA. This is understandable: presidents come and go and the composition of the parliaments and the vectors of political trends change, but no one wants to wind up with a second Chernobyl.
And so: on November 22, a meeting of the Board of Directors of the Centre for Nuclear Property Management was held, at which the issue "On the status of the work to extend the life of power unit No. 1 of the Khmelnitsky NPP" was considered. The KNPP leaders spoke at the board, and an official resolution was adopted on the basis of the hearings, the first paragraph of which reads: "we consider it possible to contemplate the issue of restarting the operation of the Khmelnitsky NPP power unit No. 1 at power levels, subject to extension of the service life of the reactor building, transport equipment and the like.” There are, of course, many points here, but we are interested in the first and main one. If translated from clerical to Russian, this means that until the reactor receives permission and a license, the State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine prohibits its operation. We have discussed above the entity that can issue this very license. In fact, the State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine shifted responsibility from a sick head to a healthy one, that is, to Energoatom. If we evaluate only the facts, then we see that Ukraine actually has given up on the first power unit of the Khmelnitsky NPP.
We will not venture to predict how the Ukrainian authorities, who have just declared another deadly battle against Russia, will behave in this situation. On the one hand, they can save four gigawatts of generation by simply agreeing with Moscow. On the other hand, we see that Ukraine prefers to think without its head.
Vince answers on Quora
The question was “Why don’t China and Russia become allies”?
A person claiming to be a “Russian propagandist” answered this question first repeating all the usual anti-Russian mantras.
American neoconservatives and Russian "liberals" have evil intentions towards Russia and China and want to create conflict and mistrust between the two.
Nixon and Kissinger were the first US officials to advocate granting Most-Favoured-Nation status to China. The ill-disguised ulterior motive was to drive a wedge between China and Russia. The sneaky trick backfired. The status was granted after Nixon’s term was truncated and the main effect was that the US lost its status as the world’s chief manufacturer. Relations between Russia and China were never seriously affected by this trade policy.
But the decrepit old gang of Russia baiters never gave up trying to implement their decrepit old idea.
One of the most subtle techniques these anti-Russian militants use is propaganda designed to create hostility between Russia and China.
First of all, let me say that I have a master's degree in Russian; I lived in the Soviet Union while studying at Leningrad University, and later I studied Chinese for three years in the Chinese-speaking world (primarily at the Mandarin Training Centre in Taibei).
Over the years I learned to love the Russian and Chinese cultures and peoples, not to mention their languages and literatures.
There is so much disinformation in the West and among the Russian "liberals" that it is difficult to cope with the lies, but my unique background obliges me to try.
There is this absolutely false notion that China wants total control over Russia. There is absolutely no evidence to suggest this. But plenty of propaganda.
The "experts" sometimes say that the only common interests between the two countries are economic and are ethnocentric, with each country focussing only on its own narrow interests. But the main shared interests are in fact geopolitical. One of the main interests is de-dollarization, ie, reducing the use of the US dollar in world trade in order to fight US hegemony and usher in the multipolar world coveted by both states. This is a very long-term goal that will not be achieved for years. It is therefore not urgent to worry about China controlling Russia. For Russia, China is the key to the success of this effort, and vice-versa. Already in 2014, the two countries had signed an agreement to deliver Russian gas to China for 30 years thenceforth using a rouble-yuan currency swap – effectively eliminating the use of the USD! This means that, in any case, the two states must get along well enough for the next three decades, and there is ample motive to do so. So, how can anyone claim there is an impending rupture in China-Russia relations? It is pure empty propaganda.
Some "experts" also want us to believe that the new Silk Road is only a Chinese enterprise. It's just not true. China has invited all countries to participate and Russia is already participating. 29 heads of state, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, were invited to the Belt Road Forum (BRF) in Beijing. The US was also invited to participate but was too proud to join. That is, it had already absurdly projected failure for China, and joining the OBOR would have conspicuously contradicted that foolish forecast. Too bad because the project promises to be lucrative for all investors.
Some "experts" also say that Putinism is capitulation of Russia to the West. However, these experts provide no evidence of this. There is none. Quite to the contrary, Putin has begun to completely dominate Syria and the entire Middle East, edging out the US with every passing day. A recent survey amongst young people in the Middle East shows that the country the majority of them trust is Russia, whereas the same survey showed several years ago that most of them trusted the United States and not Russia. Thus the situation has reversed itself since Russia entered the fray in Syria and quickly helped Syrian troops root out ISIS almost everywhere (except in those areas like Deir Ezzor and Al-Tanf where the US is protecting them). In addition, Russia has sold arms to almost all states in the Middle East, including US allies such as the Saudis. Russia has also sold nuclear power plants to several countries in the Middle East, and also industrial parks, including one along the Suez Canal.
In addition, the commander of the US Special Forces, General Raymond Thomas, recently lamented that his EC-130 reconnaissance aircraft are no longer able to carry out their mission in Syria (where the United States is illegally present) because of "the most aggressive electronic warfare environment on the planet." He was referring of course to the superior Russian system of electronic warfare. This was confirmed when Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said, after the installation of S-300 air defence systems in Syria, that "satellite navigation, radar and communications of any aircraft participating in the attack on Syria from the West will be suppressed.” Russia is the master of Syria and the United States will soon have to leave. The recent interception of 3 Ukrainian naval vessels in the Kerch Strait also illustrates that Russia is capable of defying the US in the boldest of terms. So, how is this compatible with the notion of Russia bowing to the west? Again, it is empty propaganda devoid of facts.
Putinism is superior because it masterfully avoids military conflicts while showing the United States that Russia is boss. It forces the United States to its knees without directly using its weapons against them. This is the work of a true diplomatic and military genius. There has never been a man like Putin anywhere in the world at any time in history.
Finally, how can anyone say that Russia is slowly deindustrialising its economy? [as the Russian “expert” had asserted] It's quite the opposite. Since the United States began imposing sanctions on Russia, the country is working diligently to become self-sufficient, and succeeding. When China stopped buying US soybeans in response to Trump's sanctions, Russia began to assume the role of supplying soybeans to China.
As far as industry is concerned, Russia manufactures its own machinery, its own autos - very high quality automobiles and in diversified lines; Russia is also leading the world in the construction of nuclear power plants and is seeking to become the leader in artificial intelligence. Furhter, it is a leader in shipbuilding; it also makes its own computers and develops its own software; it has developed a system that plays the same role as the SWIFT system (which is located in Belgium and controlled by the United States so as to punish states that refuse to bow to the Exceptional Nation), and allows various countries to bypass the Belgian SWIFT system.
Finally, as a kind of extension to the Chinese OBOR, Russia has developed an arctic trade route that cuts off many miles from the standard shipping route between Asia and Europe via the Suez Canal.
Russia is a land of miracles. Anyone trying to minimize, undermine or slander Russia and its government will eventually be humiliated. If you are Russian, be proud of it and be proud of your patriotic leader.
If you are a Russian “liberal,” you will inherit the earth despite yourself.
Following is our translation of an article from the Russian site Nation News, with a foreword from Vince Dhimos.
Back in December 2013, Assistant Secretary of State, wife of notorious Neocon Robert Kagan, gave a rousing speech before the National Press Club praising the work of her administration in bringing democracy to Ukraine. She sounded like a charismatic evangelist pleading with sinners to surrender their souls to the Lord, or motivational speakers selling AMWAY to hopeful perspective entrepreneurs. Oddly, Ukraine had already had a democratically elected government at the time of the violent, illegal Maidan coup, which was supported in part by USAID and a Soros foundation. Soros admitted his involvement on national TV. (Funny how “conservatives” will condemn Soros but, thanks to Trump’s support for the failed government of Ukraine, will also support weapon deliveries to Ukraine to kill Russian speakers as part of Soros' fendish plans).
“SOROS: Well, I set up a foundation in Ukraine before Ukraine became independent of Russia. And the foundation has been functioning ever since and played an important part in events now.”
It was supported as well by European politicians, who dangled EU membership before the greedy eyes of Ukrainian politicians.
Anyone who needs unbiased, non-government sponsored information on the Maidan coup needs to keep a safe distance from US politicians and msm, and to read this.
The Maidan coup involved an illegal change in the Ukrainian constitution, making US intervention, or more precisely instigation, illegal as well. In law, whether international or other, it is axiomatic that aiding and abetting a crime is never legal. The US committed a crime in supporting this illegal action and is still sending US taxpayer-paid lethal arms to support the Ukrainian government’s murder of Donbass citizens. To better understand the intricacies of the Maidan coup. I urge the reader to read the following article in its entirety:
Western msm want us to think that the reason for Ukraine’s failure is Russia, which added Crimea to its national territory in 2014 and supports, at least morally, the insurgent groups in Donbass (now the Lugansk and Donetsk People’s Republics). They never mention that Crimea held a referendum in March 2014 and over 90% of Crimeans voted to accede to the Russian Federation. This referendum is supported by international law and precedent. Further, the predominantly Russian-speaking Lugansk and Donetsk also held referenda in 2014. 89.07% of Dontetsk citizens and 90.53% of Lugansk citizens voted for independence. These results unequivocally give Donbass the right to be independent under international law and precedent. Yet Western msm and pols insist on calling this independence movement Russian aggression. It isn’t either.
The upshot of the Maidan coup, based on the promise by the EU to make Ukraine an associate member and hence improve its economy, is that the Ukrainian economy is now the worst in Europe, and its GDP fell sharply after the coup “succeeded.”
The chart posted here shows that the Maidan coup, purporting to bring prosperity, almost completely ruined the country. Ironically, in 2013, the year just before the coup, Ukraine was enjoying the highest GDP ever – 181.31 billion – under a pro-Russian government (thanks to Russian investment and trade). The year of the coup – staged on the promise of greater prosperity – it fell drastically to 133.5 bil and then further, to 91.03 bil in 2015 and remained low until the present. You might suppose the loss of certain territories to Russia and Russia-loyal citizens could have caused this, but President Poroshenko himself admitted in the statement quoted below that “the leadership of the country was to blame.” He didn’t mention it, but Ukraine is suffering the effects of corruption, supported by the hope of US and EU intervention, which is not forthcoming. Money cannot solve the problem of corruption, which is a moral, not an economic, issue.
This should show every American that the delivery of lethal weapons to this failed regime is nothing short of a crime against humanity, supported by the silence of the American people.
There was a time when America had a sound economy and actually helped out other countries, for example, Germany under the Marshall Plan, and Europe still remembers this. But they are slow to learn that there will never be another example of US altruism. We showed here what the US does to countries that it defeats in war. Ukraine has behaved like a spoiled kid who steals other kids' lunch money and threatens to have his mafia father beat them up if they complain. What they don't know is that the US is struggling with its own foundering economy and can't give them any substantive aid, only a token amount of useful new weapons and a lot of old decommissioned ships and planes that cost them millions to refurbish. And they have adopted the Russia hate of this bully state thinking this will ingratiate them with the bully. But in fact the bully is tired of Ukraine and its constant whining. As for Europe, people there are horrified at the fascist ideology that pervades the Ukrainian populace and parts of the military structure. They have forgotten that Germany is embarrassed at its own Nazi past and France is embarrassed at its Vichy past. They want to bury Ukraine somewhere in a dark corner. The future of the country as an EU member is not very rosy.
Poroshenko says why Ukraine is the poorest country in Europe
November 12, 2018
According to the Ukrainian leader Petro Poroshenko, the pace of economic growth in the country does not meet the requirements of the population, and Ukraine itself today is the poorest country in Europe.
During the meeting of the Regional Development Council in Kiev, President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko acknowledged that the country today remains the poorest state in Europe. He acknowledged that economic growth does not meet the requirements of the population, and said that the leadership of the country was to blame.
As Poroshenko said, if 70% of the population is confident that the country is clearly moving in the wrong direction, then the Ukrainian authorities are not working hard enough.
Commenting on the expected increase in gas tariffs, he said that this is a necessary measure.
As previously reported by the publication Nation News, "If this is not stopped, problems await Ukraine": a fatal forecast for the country was voiced in Kiev.
END OF TRANSLATION
Stephen Cohen on Ukraine
Official laments situation in Ukraine
Back in December 2013, Assistant Secretary of State, wife of notorious Neocon Robert Kagan, gave a rousing speech before the National Press Club praising the work of her administration in bringing democracy to Ukraine. Oddly, Ukraine had already had a democratically elected government at the time of the violent, illegal Maidan coup.
Ukraine army attacks Donbass
Urkaine murders Russian speakers, destroys homes
Quora is a forum that enables people to consult experts on just about any topic. I have been listed as an expert in languages and international affairs, among other things, and am directly asked questions on related topics.
You can learn a lot from Westerners who are indoctrinated by the statements of politicians and the msm and believe implicitly in them. These people are generally not the enemy. They just need help.
I responded to a question as to why the US and the West want to remove Bashar Al-Assad and fund groups that oppose him. I said that the US had signed in 1973 an agreement with the Saudis to use their military to “defend” them and that things had gotten out of hand. My response:
At this same URL I showed that the US has been a mercenary of the Saudi royals ever since Nixon and King Faisal signed what I call the petrodollar agreement, in 1973.
(This same text is available at the NSS page: http://www.newsilkstrategies.com/news--analysis/the-us-military-is-a-mercenary-force-in-the-hire-of-the-saudi-dictatorship)
A respondent retorted:
“These aren’t facts. There’s are your opinions and interpretations. Many of which I believe are no where near the truth.
You isn’t cute anything you said [sic]. Didn’t source.”
It may be worth noting that I have written at Quora numerous commentaries on the brutality of the Israelis and am sometimes attacked by Israeli trolls whose English usage and grammar tips them off as non-native speakers of English. It appears as if some of these trolls follow me all over the forum just to harass. But their views are rather uniform and include a pronounced pro-Saudi stance, thanks to the shared hostility toward Iran. (BTW, the anti-Iran position of the White House has everything to do with US kowtowing to the Saudis/Israelis). Since this mentality infects others, it is important for the other side to be heard. BTW, instead of directly answering the trolls, I generally just post links to sites that show, often with videos, the brutality of the Israeli army against the hapless residents of the occupied territories. (Such as this one: https://vimeo.com/86575949). Most of my linked material is from Israeli sites like Haaretz or Jerusalem Post. I also like to post links to articles showing how the Israeli government is losing the support of young US Jews and Evangelicals. These reports and videos eventually cool of the hotheads and send the trolls packing. Facts are still facts.
BTW, unlike liberal critics of "Christian" Zionism, I do not criticise these "Christians" for being overly literal in their scriptural interpretations. In fact, quite the opposite is true. They are no literal enough in this case. They base much of their Cult of Israel on Ezekiel 37, but if they examined Ezekiel 37 more closely, they would see in verse 24 that David is the king of this Israel and that this nation is obedient to God's decrees. Thus, since David has been dead for millennia and has not been resurrected, and since a Reuters poll shows that a full 60% of today's Israelis self-describe as "irreligious," there is no way modern Israel could be construed to be the nation prophesied by Ezekiel. So where did their heresy come from? Mostly from the Scofield Bible commentaries, which are full of flaws.
I responded as follows:
First off, which of my facts would you need sources for? After all, my arguments are based on the kind of countries and leaders that the Saudis hate, and which just happen to be the targets of US wars. The wars are common knowledge and the kinds of leaders are well known as well. I entered into detail, covering all the wars and the leaders who were taken out by the US and showed how the outcomes of each war were all in keeping with Saudi wishes. This is not rocket science. The main hurdle is allowing yourself to see the obvious.
On the issue of “sources,” let us look at an analogy.
In the early 1500s, a Polish scholar named Mikołai Kopernik (we call him Nicolaus Copernicus now) burned the midnight oil for many years doing research on planetary movements relative to the sun, and after this painstaking research, wrote a book titled De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres—back then, European scholars wrote in Latin) explaining, based on Kopernik’s mathematical calculations (only his, no one helped), that the planets, including earth, rotate about the sun and that, contrary to popular belief everywhere in the world, the sun does not move relative to the planets but rather it’s the other way around. (Do you need a source for that too?)
Kopernik knew that if he published this book too early, the Church would likely try him as a heretic. Religion was the centre of Western thinking, just as it is today, where US foreign policy is based in large part on a misreading of the Bible, as I showed here https://www.quora.com/Why-do-people-follow-the-thousands-year-old-religion-and-kill-for-it. Worst of all for Kopernik is that the poor fellow was unable to provide a single footnote in his book. Why? Because his was pioneering research and no one had ever written anything like it. Further, it was taboo material. Even if someone else had thought about writing on this topic, they would have been deterred by fear of the Church.
Now some Westerners today are also doing pioneering research, and because they are breaking new ground, there just is no one to cite as a source. And in the field of geopolitics, pioneering can be fatal. There are agencies watching those who dare to challenge the received wisdom from the msm, Washington, Wall Street, AIPAC and the ADL. And they have their henchmen in social media.
Thus many Western zombies will say “but you have no sources.” Because every time a Westerner says or writes anything, Westerners expect the ideas expressed to have a safe, approved precedent somewhere. But if that person is basing his text on his own personal research, no matter how meticulous the study or how accurate the observations may be, many Western readers will reject it and will condemn the unfortunate messenger for daring to step out of line.
The upshot of Kopernik’s story is that he was obliged to have the book published on his deathbed because he was afraid, based on the experience of others, that he was literally risking being burned at the stake simply for reporting his scientific findings.
Westerners have not changed since then. We still burn “heretics.”
In the following we present our translation of an article from gazeta.ru on the chilling implications of the US’s exit from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF Treaty).
“If the United States, under the leadership of Donald Trump, withdraws from the INF Treaty and applies medium-range missiles to Russia, the system will not be able to give an appropriate response. For this reason, Russia may turn to a strategy of a preventive nuclear strike.”
Americans discuss the possibility of a nuclear war with aplomb, mostly because Evangelicals, the largest voting bloc, believe implicitly that US war policy enjoys the blessings of the Almighty, particularly when the government is in harmony with the policies of Israel. It does not matter that Israel does not in any way meet the description in Ezekiel 37 upon which their “Christian” Zionism is based. And it matters not that this Israel is 60% “irreligious” or that its leadership grievously violates the Ten Commandments and the Levitican commandment to love one’s neighbour. Nor does it matter that the Old Testament God of Abraham had banished the Hebrews from their homeland for disobedience and this disobedience had never gone away. All that matters is that they believe in this Israel and many think the Holy Spirit has told them that Trump is somehow God’s man. When mere men base their theology on the feeling that the Holy Spirit is telling them things that clash with what the Bible clearly spells out, mischief is just around the corner.
But it is not just Evangelicals who feel invulnerable to atomic radiation. The bulk of Americans never learn of the dangers of backing out of long-standing arms control treaties. Very few are reading this and other blogs that inform them of what the Russians themselves are saying, and, unlike in real democracies or governments resembling them, US msm and politicians keep telling their subjects that the US is invincible so not to worry.
It doesn’t matter that all warlike theocracies of the past (such as the invading Mongols) have come to a bitter end. Because the US is different we are told. It is the Indispensable and Exceptional nation, like ancient Israel and has a special blessing from the Almighty. Thus it can toy with nuclear war all it wants and no harm will come to it. It therefore has no responsibility to its future generations to raise a finger to prevent a nuclear holocaust.
This lack of concern on the part of the American cult of Israel and the terminally brainwashed fits in perfectly with the evil designs of the US elites to wreak havoc in the world and even to court disaster. And yet these elites are mostly atheistic. It is a perfect symbiosis between two groups that could not be more different from each other, working in concert to create chaos, one intentionally and one in complete childish innocence.
It’s a perfect storm.
Meanwhile, commentaries like this one never get finished because news continues to break.
This just in:
Thanks to Trump’s exiting the INF treaty, Russia considers reopening a base in Cuba:
Oops. Did someone forget that Russia also as options?
The “dead hand” withers: How Trump is depriving Russia of protection
Why Russia has recognized the futility of the nuclear "Dead Hand"
"Army" section 11-9-2018
The “Perimetr” system, also known as the “Dead Hand” system, which provides for a retaliatory nuclear strike on the enemy in the event of the country's leadership perishes, may become useless. If the United States, under the leadership of Donald Trump, withdraws from the INF Treaty and threatens Russia with medium-range missiles, the system will not be able to provide an appropriate response. For this reason, Russia may turn to the strategy of a preventive nuclear strike.
The ex-chief of the Main Staff of the Strategic Missile Forces (1994-1996), Colonel-General Viktor Yesin, said that the Russian system of automatic retaliatory nuclear attack “Perimetr,” known in the West as the “Dead Hand”, may be useless in the event of a military conflict.
According to Yesin, after the possible withdrawal of the United States from the Treaty on the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), the Perimetr system may lose its effectiveness. He stressed that, although the system is functioning and has undergone modernization, the Russian side will be able to launch only those missiles that will “survive” after the “aggressor’s” first strike.
According to the former military leader, the United States will be able to deliver the first blow if they deploy intermediate-range ballistic missiles in Europe, where the INF currently does not allow the deployment of intermediate range missile. Such missiles will be able to destroy almost all of the missile forces in the European part of Russia, and the rest of the missiles will be intercepted by the missile defence system, Yesin concluded, who expressed his opinion in an interview with the newspaper Zvezda.
“Frankly, we do not yet have an effective response to US intermediate-range missiles in Europe.”
If the United States starts to deploy its missiles in Europe, we will have no other choice but to abandon the retaliatory strike doctrine and move on to the pre-emptive strike doctrine,” the retired military man emphasized.
The so-called "Perimetr" system, commonly known as the "Dead Hand", is a system of automated atomic weapons use, in case the country's leadership dies as a result of an enemy nuclear strike.
The decision to retaliate with the "Perimetr" is made on the basis of information from numerous sensors deployed in the country - seismic, radiation and atmospheric pressure, which determine the signs of nuclear explosions. In peacetime, this system can determine with almost 100% accuracy where in the world a nuclear device was detonated.
Following the decision by the Perimetr system to use strategic nuclear weapons (and this is actually a computerized solution), a command missile (or rockets) is launched with a special warhead, which in flight sends commands to launch all nuclear weapons carriers that have corresponding receivers at control points. In this case, intercontinental ballistic missiles and missiles from submarines are launched automatically.
At the same time, as experts note, the operating characteristics of the Perimetr system can only be judged speculatively at this time. There is no exact data on this.
There is some reason to assume that the Perimetr consists of command posts, command ballistic missiles, receiving devices and an autonomous command and control system (all terms are very, very conditional).
It is worth noting that in March 2018, one of the leading American experts on nuclear disarmament, Bruce Blair, warned that the Russian Perimetr (Dead Hand) system was still being improved.
Earlier, US President Donald Trump had said that Washington was withdrawing from the INF Treaty, which was signed in 1987 by the presidents of the USSR and the USA and is still considered the cornerstone of international security. It meant the destruction of the whole class of missiles of this type in Europe.
Russia's permanent representative to the European Union, Vladimir Chizhov, warned that in the event the Treaty on the Elimination of Short-Range and Medium-Range Missiles (INF) is dissolved, European countries "will face nightmares." According to Chizhov, quoted by RIA Novosti, this agreement is one of the main pillars for maintaining world peace.
“Europe ... will inevitably have to face again those nightmares that haunted it more than three decades ago,” said Chizhov. He added that in order to prevent such a development of events, Europe should take a decisive position on the treaty.
END OF TRANSLATION
We had written before about the boondoggle of US LNG sales to Poland. Now that Poland has its LNG terminal set up, they are trying to sell the world the fairy tale that this US gas, which is produced, stored and shipped at exorbitant prices, is cheaper than gas delivered by pipeline from Russia without special fracking or cryogenic treatment and storage in expensive terminals. Yeah right.
Below is our translation of the story from a Russian online news site.
The prices of American LNG and Russian gas were compared in Poland
Poland will buy gas from the United States. The contract for the supply of American LNG was signed the day before. The annual volume of gas supplied to Poland will amount to 2 million tons. The contract is for 20 years. The head of oil and gas company PGNiG, Piotr Woźniak meanwhile compared gas prices from the United States and Russia and came to the following conclusion.
The supply of American liquefied gas will cost the country less than Russian gas. The purchase price of gas from the United States is almost 30% lower than in Russia.
There are three possible explanations for the report that US LNG shipped to Poland is cheaper than Russian gas.
1.— Without mentining it, Woźniak was in fact slyly comparing Russian LNG and US LNG, rather than Russian gas delivered by pipeline and US LNG. This would be an irrelevant comparison because Poland had been buying the very cheap Russian gas delivered by pipeline, with which US LNG cannot possibly compete – unless, of course, it is subsidized by the US, in violation of WTO rules. And that is a very real possibility thanks to the new tax reform.
2.— Piotr Woźniak is lying to induce other suckers in Europe to buy US LNG, as part of a secret deal with the US.
3.— The tax credits to gas companies under the 2017 “tax reform,” initially giving one-time tax credits to the CEOs of gas companies thanks to taxpayer generosity will be extended so that the US can be Great Again at taxpayer expense for at least the next 20 years. If this is the case, then the inherently extravagantly expensive LNG will be sold at a permanent discount and the taxpayer will simply stay on the hook for the price difference. This rotten scheme is not the way to grow an economy. It can only serve the purpose of putting Russia out of business and making Americans poorer. But since it violates the WTO rule banning subsidization of exports, it can easily be challenged in court.
Every single one of the reader comments on this article expressed disbelief with this report, showing that ordinary Russians are smarter than Polish officials. Here is a translation of my comment posted at the site:
There are several processes that make American LNG much more expensive than Russian pipeline gas, and this is a constant that cannot be changed.
One: this gas is produced by hydraulic fracturing, which is more costly, because 1. it requires an expensive additional process and 2. the gas field lasts a very short time, requiring frequent opening of new fields and redrilling.
Then, after the gas is extracted, it must be processed cryogenically and compressed into a giant storage terminal.
After that, it must be transferred to a vessel equipped with giant storage domes, and sent abroad to a similar storage terminal. The gas must then be regassified by heat exchange, usually against sea water, and injected into the transport network.
The only reason why this gas could possibly cheaper is that the US government subsidizes it. This subsidy is indirect and based on a 2017 tax reform, which gives tax breaks to gas companies that show low or zero profits. Of course, the taxpayer pays for it. In fact, the WTO (World Trade Organization) does not allow subsidization of exports, and Russia can therefore sue the United States for the unfair loss of its market share.