John Feffer examines what it means that North Korea has been driven ever closer to fellow nuclear powers Russia and China.
Sovereignty was once the king’s prerogative; he was, after all, the sovereign. Today’s autocrats, like Vladimir Putin, are more likely to have been voted into office than born into the position like Kim Jong-un. The elections that elevate such autocrats might be questionable (and are likely to become ever more so during their reign), but popular support is an important feature of the new authoritarianism. Putin is currently backed by around 80% of Russians; Orban’s approval rating in Hungary hovers near 60%; and while Donald Trump could likely win again only thanks to voter suppression and increasingly antidemocratic features baked into the American political system, millions of Americans did put Trump in the White House in 2016 and continue to genuinely believe that he’s their savior. Bolsonaro in Brazil, Nayib Bukele in El Salvador, Narendra Modi in India, Kais Saied in Tunisia: they were all elected.
Yes, such leaders are nationalists who often act like populists in promising all sorts of handouts and feel-good nostrums to their supporters. But what makes today’s autocrats particularly dangerous is their exceptionalism, their commitment to the kind of sovereignty that existed before the creation of the United Nations, the earlier League of Nations, or even the Treaty of Westphalia that established the modern interstate system in Europe in 1648. Both Trump and Xi Jinping harken back to a Golden Age all right — of rulers who counted on the unquestioned loyalty of their subjects and exercised a dominion unchallenged except by other monarchs.
Thousands of people young and old lined up to pay their respects and view the body of Mikhail Gorbachev
Russian President Vladimir Putin did not attend the funeral of the former Soviet leader
Many Western leaders were absent from the funeral due to tense relations between Moscow and the West
The man affectionately known as ‘Gorby’ in the West and who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1990 for his role in ending the Cold War is buried at Moscow’s famous Novodevichy cemetery alongside his wife Raisa, who died in 1999.
Some 8 influential Russians against Putin have now died under suspicious circumstances and others are incarcerated, Gorbachev ex-President hasn’t been awarded a State Funeral and Putin didn’t bother to attend. Nevertheless, Trump still is in awe of the Russian State and Putin’s power.
NATO’s secretary general says Vladimir Putin’s invasion has not gone to plan and Ukraine “can win this war” as new intelligence indicated Russia may have lost one third of the force it sent to the country. Speaking after a meeting of NATO foreign ministers, Jens Stoltenberg said Russia’s military was not achieving “its strategic objectives”. “They failed to take Kyiv, they are pulling back from around Kharkiv, their major offensive in Donbas has stalled,” said Mr Stoltenberg. “Ukraine can win this war.”
If the west could find the courage, it would order an immediate freeze of Rupert Murdoch’s assets. His Fox News presenters and Russia’s propagandists are so intermeshed that separating the two is as impossible as unbaking a cake.
The Israeli and Ukrainian governments have lambasted the Russian Federation for remarks of Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in a video interview with an Italian TV station. Lavrov defended Moscow’s creepy allegation that the Ukrainian government is dominated by Nazis, even though the president, Volodomyr Zelensky, is Jewish. Lavrov said that to his recollection, Adolf Hitler was part Jewish, and he alleged that some of the worst antisemites are Jewish.
The problem is hardly new. In 1961, U.S. President (and five-star general) Dwight Eisenhower warned against, “the unwarranted influence”, of the “Military-Industrial Complex”, which will do anything to increase profits, which grow as arms sales increase and which benefit from wars. So, while moral outrage over Russian crimes in Ukraine is completely justified, we in the West need to avoid simplistic good guy/bad guy dichotomies. A global peace movement, like the one that prevented the United States from using nuclear weapons against the Vietnamese, is our best hope to reduce the risk of wars and other existential crises. As Nicolas Haeringer observes (in Informed Comment), “We can turn concrete acts of solidarity into the new norm…” 10 and reduce the unacceptable amount of suffering from conflicts, hunger, and poverty, as well as addressing the climate crisis. It’s up to us.
Ten years in the making of an agreement signed just weeks before an election smells of a scam. One needs to ask what Morrison actually sacrificed in order to gain this politically advantageous signing at such a fortuitous moment. The Indians are known for their bargaining skills and ability to take commercial advantage. They are one of the few countries currently refusing to criticize Putin and are not employing sanctions against Russia. Furthermore, they are happily buying their cheaper oil and so offering indirect and questionable support in their war against Ukraine. Morrison is rewarding India a nation for its questionable ethical and contrarian stance to ours and his associated media propagandists are supporting him in this less than perfect moral stance. he’s indirectly siding with Russia. In fact he directly sided with Putin at the last Climate summit in Glasgow.
The Morrison government has hailed the agreement as a significant step in its efforts to diversify export markets and reduce Australia’s economic dependence on China.”This is an economic agreement that has strategic might to it,” Mr Tehan said.
Less than a final solution given the Saudi- Qattar conflict. The final solution for Independence must be renewable energy and Germany is a tech leader.
Germany is making considerable progress in weaning itself off fossil fuel imports from Russia and could become virtually independent of the country’s coal and oil by the end of this year, said economy and climate minister Robert Habeck in Berlin. Natural gas supply poses the biggest challenge and it will likely take until mid-2024 for Germany to be able to forgo deliveries from Russia, said the minister. Significant expansion of renewables, reduction of consumption in all sectors, diversification and the ramp-up of hydrogen are needed for this.
The CSFR was handed over to Hitler pre WW2. Is Ukraine ready to be donated to Putin by the West. It appears all dictators know they can get away with it. It’s this behaviour that allowed Trump to constantly avoid the consequences of his actions too along with Nth Korea, Saudi Arabia, Israel and even the US while the world watches.
“They have moved to a new stage of terror in which they are trying to physically eliminate representatives of legitimate local Ukrainian authorities,” said the Ukrainian president.
There are no micro parts to WAR war is war a macro event and on this scale the bombing of hospitals, the invading of nations with tanks, planes, and bombs isn’t subtle it’s physical, and it’s WAR. In this war economic retaliation is a consequence it’s not the cause. Russian propaganda might well have a domestic impact in Russia but it certainly hasn’t had one on the world at large. Putin is losing the propaganda war too. Besides Putin wants the Ukraine for the economic benefit of Russia too.
Russia is the global pariah and Putin stands alone naked without clothes no matter the cons he accuses other countries of. Their united response which, by and large, in this case is for the common good and not just for the benefit of Oligarchs and a steroid bent ex-KGB autocrat. Neither Dmitry Peskov nor Putin speak for the Russian people anymore who have been cut off from the global REALITY, NEWS AND INFORMATION.
Amid concerns that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s deadly invasion of Ukraine could lead to a wider war, the Kremlin on Wednesday accused the United States government of waging economic warfare. “The U.S., undoubtedly, declared an economic war against Russia and they are waging this war. Yes, de facto this is exactly what it is,” said Dmitry Peskov, a Kremlin spokesperson.
The lesson here is straightforward: Everyone who wants their country to improve should feel free to engage in sincere, accurate criticism of their government’s actions. It is both inevitable and irrelevant that it will likely end up sounding similar to criticism of their country by foreign “enemy” governments. And those who claim the similarity discredits the internal critics should be ignored like the propagandists they are. To keep this in mind, you can memorize this article, or just keep a copy of this chart handy:
When Trump abandoned the Kurds in Syria he actually helped cement Russian influence in the Middle East along with Israel’s. Simply follow the money and the damage he caused and it becomes obvious that he was Russia’s puppet starting a war with China. Henot only divided America but the Western world.
Moscow’s partnership with Saudi Arabia has grown dramatically in recent years, granting the two largest oil producers in the world the unprecedented ability to collude in oil export decisions. The desert kingdom’s relationship with the U.S. has chilled in the meantime, as demonstrated earlier this month, when President Joe Biden pleaded with the Saudis to increase oil production — a move that would not only have helped to alleviate rising inflation and gas prices, but also reduced Russia’s extravagant profits amid its aggression against Ukraine. The Saudi king declined.
Trump’s double-cross of the Kurds in the Middle East his attack on China and his ability to divide America provided Russia and Putin with a massive right wing opportunity to wedge the Western world and start a war in Europe.
Putin had helped bring about a regime change in the most powerful nation of the world, installing in office an utterly inexperienced fellow who had been heaping praise on the corrupt Russian autocrat for years. What a victory! On election night 2016, an employee of Russia’s Internet Research Agency, which had been a key part of the Kremlin operation, sent a message reporting that cyber operatives there “uncorked a tiny bottle of champagne” when they found out Trump had won and “uttered almost in unison: ‘We made America great.’” At a celebration in Moscow, Dmitry Drobnitsky, a writer for pro-Kremlin outlets, exclaimed, “This is the real reset of the Western world.”
(Informed Comment) – In his incendiary speech on Ukraine on Monday, Vladimir Putin alleged that Ukraine does not really exist, that it is an artificial construct of the Communist period, crafted by Vladimir Lenin. He declared, “Ukraine never had a tradition of genuine statehood.” When I heard that, it reminded me of the Israeli propaganda line that there has never in history been a Palestine. Denying a people their right to national sovereignty today by arguing that they lacked it in the past thus seems to be a typical move of expansionist states like Russia and Israel, bent on dominating their neighbors.
Biden has been wedged by neo-Nazis and a Russian Imperialist in a face-off. Who does he side with. Putin has false flags in place in the Southern Donbass region of Ukraine to justify his invasion. Biden can’t for a moment justify he’s even saving a Democracy.
While Senate Democrats consider a way forward to send Ukraine hundreds of millions of dollars so it can buy new weapons, some of the most influential advocates are neglecting measures to make sure they don’t wind up with the country’s notorious neo-Nazis.
But let us be clear: No American president is going to go to war with Russia over the Ukraine. There is no compelling US national interest in a military involvement in that part of the world, and Russia is a nuclear-armed state. The steps President Biden has spoken about, including sending 8,000 US troops to countries in the vicinity of Ukraine that are allied with Washington, are (rather weak) symbolism. The threat of economic sanctions is in any case far more powerful. But Biden wouldn’t be playing such a weak hand if the US had had a unified position for the past five years and if Trump hadn’t appeared to be working for the other side.
But the stalemate shows how differently the Putin and Biden administrations interpret the security situation on Europe’s periphery. For the US, Russia’s determination to act as a spoiler stems from a petulant unhappiness with the post-Soviet geopolitical status quo. Get news curated by experts, not algorithms. For Russia, the US is the chief instigator of instability in Europe, pushing Western-dominated political and security institutions, like NATO and the European Union, ever closer to its borders. These contrasting viewpoints give both protagonists entirely different objectives for the outcome of the talks – one wants to build walls, the other seeks to break them down.
Beijing and Moscow hold a second series of exercises in October Japan said a group of 10 vessels from the two nations sailed through the Tsugaru Strait The patrols are maintaining “peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region”, according to the Russian defence ministry
On Thursday, a Trump administration official called the Republican Party the nation’s “No. 1 national security threat,” suggesting that the party surpasses that of ISIS, al Qaeda and Russia. “I’ve spent my whole career not as a political operative. I’ve never worked on a campaign in my life other than campaigning against Trump. I’m a national security guy,” said former DHS official Miles Taylor in a Thursday interview on MSNBC. “I’ve worked in national security against ISIS, al Qaeda and Russia.” He added: “And the No. 1 national security threat I’ve ever seen in my life to this country’s democracy is the party that I’m in: the Republican Party. It is the No. 1 national security threat to the United States of America.”
Trump had spent his last year in office ruminating over Haspel. Some of Trump’s hardcore allies, including Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo, had been publicly raising doubts in his mind about her. He grew to distrust her and instead wanted a loyal ally at the top of the CIA.
Iran, Russia and electoral interference. It is all part of the delicious mess that any observer of US politics has come to expect. Were the US body politic capable of being examined on the clinician’s couch, historical fears, psychic disturbances, and a range of unsettling syndromes would be identified. The issue of electoral interference would certainly be at the fore; it would also be fitting that a state so indifferent to the electoral sovereignty of others would now find itself constantly fearing large return servings.
And, given Trump’s need for a new electoral “hook” that conforms with the new political reality surrounding his illness, the possibility of an ‘October surprise’ in the form of an arms control agreement that is widely seen as benefiting US national security interests may be the best opportunity for a sick president to appear presidential at a critical time in his bid for re-election.
What’s odd is RTA the Russian News agency is calling the research into this a hoax. Why would that be? Is it because bikers tend to be Trumpsters
It was a 10-day celebration of big bikes and inalienable American freedom for which more than 400,000 people descended on a South Dakota town. But, three weeks on, the 80th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is feared to have been a “super-spreader event”, with doctors recording scores of coronavirus cases linked to it.
There has never been a moment in American history when its democracy has come under a more profound attack than the presidency of Donald Trump. Many have suggested that America faces a moment of crisis this November, but with the U.S. Senate Select Committee concluding that Trump’s team was – and most likely remains – unwitting agents of Russia, that crisis appears to be arriving ahead of schedule.
The US Justice Department secretly took steps in 2017 to narrow the investigation into Russian election interference and any links to the Trump campaign, according to former law enforcement officials, keeping investigators from completing an examination of President Donald Trump’s decades-long personal and business ties to Russia.
But law enforcement officials never fully investigated Trump’s own relationship with Russia, even though some career FBI counterintelligence investigators thought his ties posed such a national security threat that they took the extraordinary step of opening an inquiry into them.
Within days, the former deputy attorney-general Rod Rosenstein curtailed the investigation without telling the bureau, all but ensuring it would go nowhere.
Washington: Russia used Republican political operative Paul Manafort, the WikiLeaks website and others to try to influence the 2016 US presidential election to help now-US President Donald Trump’s campaign, a Senate intelligence panel report said on Tuesday.
WikiLeaks played a key role in Russia’s effort to assist Republican Trump against Democrat Hillary Clinton and likely knew it was helping Russian intelligence, said the report, which is likely to be the most definitive public account of the 2016 election controversy.
In America, we make the working poor pay for the excesses of the crooked rich, while in Russia, the wealthy are asked to make sacrifices for the sake of the country. Which approach do you think is better?
Virtually every bit of “evidence” that Jeffrey cites is either false or inflated, to include the claim of use of chemical weapons and the responsibility for the refugees. As for who actually created the terrorists, that honor goes to the United States, which accomplished that when it invaded Iraq and destroyed its government before following up by undermining Syria. And, by the way, someone should point out to Jeffrey that Russia and Iran are in Syria as allies of its legitimate government.
Ambassador James Jeffrey maintains that “Russia needs to change its policies.” That is not correct. It is the United States that must change its policies by getting out of Syria and Iraq for starters while also stopping the deference to feckless “allies” Israel and Saudi Arabia that has produced a debilitating cold war against both Iran and Russia. Another good first step to make the U.S. a “normal, decent country” would be to get rid of the advice of people like James Jeffrey.
It’s better not to be a “more normal country” if that means being as prone to invasions and coups as the United States, top Russian ministers have said, firing back at bizarre remarks by a new Pentagon chief.
It would be “great” if the West “could get Russia to behave like a more normal country,” Mark Esper, the newly appointed defense secretary, was reported to have claimed while visiting Paris this week.
“Otherwise, we should have been acting like the US, bombing Iraq and Libya in blatant violation of international law… We should have supported coups, violent and anti-constitutional, like the US and its closest allies did in February 2014 [in Ukraine].”
News Corp Australia follows are we now no longer going to shirtfront Putin?(ODT)
On Sept. 26, 2018, President Donald Trump made an extraordinary accusation against China during his remarks to the United Nations Security Council, saying, “Regrettably, we found that China has been attempting to interfere in our upcoming 2018 election coming up in November against my administration.” He made the claim without offering any evidence, but he did speculate about China’s motivation: “They do not want me, or us, to win because I am the first president ever to challenge China on trade.”
Moscow has launched an extraordinary threat to target Australian journalists based on its false belief the Australian Federal Police are investigating the Kremlin-backed news outfit Russia Today.In a statement issued on Thursday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Moscow “reserves the right to take retaliatory measures whenever the rights of Russian journalists are being infringed upon” and threatened “tit-for-tat” measures. What it actually seems like is a cover up, a smokescreen to promote Murdoch Media. The major supporter of guess who? Yes, Trump but that’s too simple.Trump is in business a multiple failure near bankruptcy, yet making $$$ from Russian investors who have been his bankers and saviors and it’s time to pay up and drop the sanctions. Putin and the FSB are pulling the strings. The rest of the Corporate world will adjust however ordinary people will pay with $$$ & cents they can illaford to lose. (ODT)