Edward Hopper New York office 1962
TC Shorts: Julian Assange pic.twitter.com/usckyGH9B2
— Tucker Carlson (@TuckerCarlson) December 22, 2023
This was one of my favorite moments of 2023 because the SNL audience Woody made this joke to is exactly the kind of people that needed to hear it and the media proved him right that Big Pharma owns them. I bet this woke a few people up. pic.twitter.com/1uyeHt4fLc
— Robby Starbuck (@robbystarbuck) December 22, 2023
“For the Supreme Court to accept the request of Smith, would be for the Supreme Court to pretend the political motive was unknown..”
As we stated yesterday, following the Smith request, the Trump attorney response, and the Smith re-response, the transparency of the special counsel motive is obvious. For the Supreme Court to accept the request of Smith, would be for the Supreme Court to pretend the political motive was unknown. The Supreme Court did not pretend and was curt in their retort: “The petition for a writ of certiorari before judgment is denied.” Special Counsel Jack Smith argued in his petition to the court, the speedy resolution of Trump’s claim of presidential immunity is of an urgent national interest. The motive was/is a transparent speedy timeline effort to influence the 2024 GOP presidential primary race.
The court, heck, the entire world can see it. Arguments on the presidential immunity issue, within the DC Circuit Court of Appeals, are set for January 9, 2024. The decision of the 3-judge panel will come thereafter. Depending on the outcome, Donald Trump can then ask for a full panel appellate court review. If the Circuit Court appeal results in a non-favorable outcome, the next step is the Supreme Court. Meanwhile, the DC trial of Donald Trump is frozen awaiting a determination on the original issue of presidential immunity.
“Peter Navarro was convicted for contempt of Congress, because he ignored a subpoena. You know, the same thing presidential offspring Hunter Biden just did this week. Former Attorney General Eric Holder did this as well. Some subpoenas are more equal than others.”
Just the other day, New York Attorney General Letitia James issued a remarkable statement. “Before this trial even began, the judge ruled in our favor and found that Donald Trump did engage in years of significant financial fraud,” James boasted publicly. This is associated with just one of Donald Trump’s absurd legal cases. Let what this laughable, biased prosecutor said sink in for a moment. She admitted that the honorable judge had “ruled in our favor” before the case had gone to trial. Even for this collapsing Banana Republic, it’s a shocking precedent to openly brag about such a serious breach of basic legal protocol. James, whom Trump has called “racist,” recently stated, “The Donald Trump show is over.” James has referred to Trump as an “illegitimate president,” and said “his days are numbered.” She lashed out at Trump at many rallies, even declaring, “We’ll bring him down!”
Upon being elected in December 2018, James vowed, “We will use every area of the law to investigate President Trump and his business transactions and that of his family as well.” In this case, Trump is accused of exaggerating the value of his assets. Now, I’ve known a lot of people in my lifetime that exaggerated the value of whatever they had. Bullshitters, I believe they’re called. Or to be more polite, blowhards. Until now, being a bullshit artist wasn’t a criminal offense. The good judge in this case, Arthur Engoron, is about as biased as can be, a perfect example of the new judges who rule over the Orwellian courtrooms of America 2.0. Engoron slapped a gag order on the former president after he insulted his law clerk in a post on Truth Social. Some insults are more equal than others. Trump also received a gag order in his equally ridiculous trial for “conspiring to overthrow” the 2020 election, by complaining about the many obvious irregularities that smacked of fraud.
It’s hard to keep track of the players without a scorecard, but Jack Smith, the prosecutor in the case where Trump is being tried for alleging electoral fraud, something which Stacy Abrams continues to do in the same state, is in a category by himself. Smith has regularly taunted Trump on social media, at Trump’s own grade school level. It makes you proud to be an American to witness it. Judge Tanya Chutkan is almost identical to Engoron in her transparent bias against Trump. Trump has no chance in either case. Although a bit less classless than the TikTok judges Alex Jones has been tried by, they are similar in their disregard for traditional appearances of impartiality and the presumption of innocence, and their distaste for free speech.
Just as the lethargic American public permitted tyranny to be constructed all around them, without protesting or even noticing, they have allowed the implementation of a politicized justice system. The prosecutions of Roger Stone, Paul Manafort, Mike Flynn, Sydney Powell and other Trump associates were all politically motivated. Peter Navarro was convicted for contempt of Congress, because he ignored a subpoena. You know, the same thing presidential offspring Hunter Biden just did this week. Former Attorney General Eric Holder did this as well. Some subpoenas are more equal than others.
“..it is up to society to protect citizens from the “nefarious” uses of free speech or free elections by cleansing ballots and social media.”
“Why are you standing with confederates who betrayed this country?” Those words from New York Times editorial board member Mara Gay on MSNBC captured the unhinged coverage of the Colorado Supreme Court’s disqualification of Donald Trump from the 2024 election. While the underlying theory under the 14th Amendment had been previously rejected by jurists in various states (including many Democrats), Gay had a simple take for viewers: anyone raising democratic or constitutional objections are modern day confederates. Gay was asked on MSNBC’s Morning Joe how she would respond to many of us who have questioned the constitutional basis for using the 14th Amendment to bar Trump from ballots.
Gay responded: “Why are you standing with confederates who betrayed this country? This is what they’re standing with. It’s the spirit of those confederates rather than the Americans who came together after a long and brutal Civil War that was fought to keep the Union together and clearly saw a threat in ex-confederates running for office. So much so they amended the Constitution to prevent those traitors from running for office.” It is that simple for the editors of the New York Times: either you support this previously rejected theory to prevent voters from casting their ballots for a candidate or you are a confederate. So those three Democratic appointees on the Colorado Supreme Court were just more confederate fellow travelers. Gay knows that other states and courts have rejected this theory. She knows that even the majority said that the precedent for the decision was “sparce” and that this was “uncharted territory.”
Yet, if you reach the opposing view of most judges who have looked at this question, you are standing not with the Constitution but the confederacy. The obvious attempt is to intimidate and ostracize those who may have qualms over barring citizens from voting for candidates. It is akin to being called a racist on campus if you oppose diversity policies or standards on academic grounds.
It is only the latest example of how the left is engaging in McCarthy-like tactics to portray advocates for free speech or other constitutional protections as enemies of the state. Back in the day, it was the Democrats who were denounced for raising such legal objections. Now, Democratic members and pundits attack witnesses as “Putin lovers” or supporters of “insurrectionists” in opposing censorship. Or confederates for objecting to ballot cleansing. Indeed the rhetoric used by Gay is strikingly familiar to the defense for censorship on the left. She added on MSNBC that the Colorado decision “should send a message that our electoral system can be used for nefarious purposes against democracy itself. It’s clear. It’s clear as day.” Thus, it is up to society to protect citizens from the “nefarious” uses of free speech or free elections by cleansing ballots and social media.
Of course, others simply used the opinion to vent on an almost schoolyard level. Rick Wilson of The Lincoln Project, taunted the former president and said that the court “called you out for what you are. You’re a filthy insurrectionist. You’re a losing loser who loses.” That is still weirdly preferable to labeling anyone raising constitutional concerns as standing with “confederate traitors.” Yet, it is remarkable how these critics who have long objected to Trump rhetoric have adopted the same personal and reckless rhetoric. Gay’s interview should be chilling for anyone who cares about both law and journalism. It shows the righteous rage that fuels the intolerance in our country. It also shows the potential for this insidious theory as more Democratic politicians, like those in California, who are calling for their own officials to find ways to block Trump from ballots.
“..then it’s off to the races for something potentially unspeakable..”
In an effort to ‘protect democracy,’ the Colorado Supreme Court declared Donald Trump “constitutionally ineligible” from running in the state’s 2024 primary in what appears to be the latest sign that America is heading for a calamitous train wreck. Was it any coincidence that on the very same day the Biden administration began the removal of the ‘Reconciliation Memorial,’ which was unveiled 109 years ago in Arlington National Cemetery in the aftermath of the Civil War as a symbol of America’s “national unity,” the state of Colorado denied thousands of its citizens the right to vote for – who else? In a 4-3 ruling, the Colorado Supreme Court ruled that former President Donald Trump lacked the legal credentials to participate in the state’s presidential primary because of the 14th Amendment’s “insurrectionist clause,” removing his name from the state’s 2024 ballot.
The 14th Amendment on insurrection states, Section 3. No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States…shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may, by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability. Colorado’s highest court overturned a ruling from a district court judge who ruled that Trump incited an insurrection on Jan. 6, 2021, but said he could not be removed from the ballot because it was unclear that the provision – written in the post-Civil War period – was intended to cover the presidency.
The obvious problem with the Colorado ruling is that Special Counsel Jack Smith did not charge Teflon Trump with an attempt to mount an insurrection on January 6, nor any other day. However, if by some chance the U.S. Supreme Court would affirm the Colorado ruling, leaving Trump disqualified not just in Colorado but in many other states, then it’s off to the races for something potentially unspeakable. Meanwhile, the cancel-culture commandos continue their attack on civil liberties in other ‘democratic’ venues as well. YouTube, for example, said it will remove videos that make false assertions that institutional fraud cost President Trump the 2020 election (suitcases filled with ballots magically appearing from under desks after the media have all called it a night is just a ‘conspiracy theory,’ right?). Since September, the company has sent to the memory hole over 8,000 channels for spreading “harmful and misleading” content.
To add to the Orwellian-ness of its draconian handiwork, the Google-owned monstrosity was creepily happy to inform in its blog page that “over 77% of those removed videos were taken down before they had 100 views.” If we were talking about the game ‘whack the mole,’ such swiftness might be something to brag about. But since we’re talking about severe violations of the First Amendment, the company should feel nothing but shame. Incidentally, speaking about violations of the 14th Amendment, how about the part at the end that speaks about giving “aid or comfort to the enemies thereof”? With an estimated 5,000 illegal immigrants swarming across the U.S.-Mexico border every day, some traveling as far away as the Middle East and China just for the privilege, couldn’t these mostly military-aged strangers be considered very real enemies? It certainly would seem that U.S. President Joe Biden, who has exposed the American people to every sort of danger, could be found guilty of ‘aiding and abetting’ a very real threat – an epidemic, if you will. Is there not one Republican-led high court in the land to take up the challenge?
“..using aliases and private email addresses..”
US President Joe Biden exchanged dozens of emails with his son Hunter’s business associate while he was vice president, according to a Republican-led committee investigating Biden’s alleged influence-peddling. Biden has denied any involvement in his son’s overseas dealings. Files released by the House Ways and Means Committee this week show Biden using aliases and private email addresses to communicate with Eric Schwerin, Hunter Biden’s accountant, 54 times. The bulk of these exchanges took place either side of Biden’s two 2014 trips to Ukraine, with Hunter Biden appointed to the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian energy firm, after the first trip. The committee did not publish the contents of the emails, only describing when they were sent.
Nevertheless, the messages “directly refute previous public statements the president has made that he had no knowledge of his son’s business dealings,” the committee said in a press release. Asked earlier this month whether he knew about or partook in Hunter’s business activities, Biden said “I did not, and it’s a bunch of lies.” Hunter Biden was lavishly compensated for his work with Burisma, earning around $1 million per year for as long as his father was in the White House. Hunter’s former business partner, Devon Archer, told the House Oversight Committee in July that Hunter was appointed solely to guarantee that the company would have influence over US policy, and that Joe Biden regularly called Hunter during meetings with Burisma clients.
Biden admitted in 2018 to using $1 billion in American aid money as leverage to have a Ukrainian prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, fired. According to the Oversight Committee, Hunter asked his father to ensure that Shokin was sacked while the two spoke by phone during a Burisma meeting. The House Ways and Means Committee, Oversight Committee, and Judiciary Committee are currently conducting an impeachment inquiry into Biden’s alleged corruption and influence-peddling. The House of Representatives voted along party lines to formalize this inquiry earlier this month, a move that grants greater subpoena power to the committees. However, Hunter Biden has defied a subpoena calling for him to give a closed-door deposition to the Oversight and Judiciary committees, stating that he would only answer questions in a public session.
Citing witness testimony and files retrieved from a laptop belonging to Hunter Biden, Republicans allege that the Biden family received around $24 million in payments through shell companies from business figures and politicians in China, Kazakhstan, Romania, Russia, and Ukraine while Biden was vice president. Some 150 of these transactions were flagged as “suspicious” by the US Treasury Department, according to the committees. The Ways and Means Committee describes Schwerin as “the architect of the Biden family’s shell companies,” which were allegedly used to conceal these payments. Democrats insist that Schwerin merely helped Joe Biden file his tax returns during his time as vice president.
No Gaza or Red Sea today, but lots of Ukraine. Feels like things could change there, fast.
No amount of Western weapons pumped into Ukraine will be enough to secure a victory over Russia, Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico has said, adding that this means that the conflict has no military solution. In an interview with the local Pravda newspaper on Friday, Fico – a vocal critic of sending arms to Kiev – suggested that while the West was trying its best to use Ukraine to “destroy” Russia both economically and militarily, this approach was doomed from the very start. “This plan can never work, it is an absolute misunderstanding of reality and the real position of the Russian Federation,” he noted, recalling that Moscow has gained more territory than Ukraine this year, even despite the latter’s ill-fated counteroffensive.
According to Fico, while Western sanctions are certainly unpleasant for Moscow, it would be a mistake to think that “a Russian citizen is beating his head against the wall because he cannot buy an American phone” as he can simply buy a Chinese one. When it comes to the battlefield situation, the West should honestly admit that “Ukraine does not have enough forces to militarily reverse the situation,” according to the premier. We can pour all the weapons of the world, all the money there, and Russia will never be defeated militarily. It is the turn of 2023 and 2024, and you will see that Russia will begin to dictate the terms of settlement of this conflict. Meanwhile, Fico recalled that Ukraine had a chance to end the conflict in its early stages by signing an agreement with Russia but walked away from the negotiation process after receiving promises of support from the West.
This past June, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that in the spring of 2022 Moscow and Kiev drew up a peace treaty in which Ukraine had committed to a neutral status. David Arakhamia, a Ukrainian MP who led Kiev’s delegation at the talks, later confirmed that this was one of Russia’s key demands. He also said that Ukraine broke off the engagement after then-UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson dissuaded it from taking the deal. Several months after the talks collapsed, four former Ukrainian regions overwhelmingly voted to join Russia in public referendums, with President Vladimir Zelensky later barring negotiations with Moscow. Russia, however, maintains it is open to engagement with Kiev. As things currently stand, “only a naive person” could imagine that Russia would contemplate leaving its new territories, Fico concluded.
“People of cultures other than Ukrainian, be they Russian or something else, do not want to fight for a monoethnic Ukraine because Kiev discriminates against them..”
Ukraine cannot exist as a monoethnic and monocultural state in its 1991 borders, which is the essence of what the government of President Vladimir Zelenksy seeks in the conflict with Russia, his former aide Aleksey Arestovich said in an interview on Friday. Speaking to journalist Yulia Latynina, the ex-official declared the nationalist Ukrainian project “dead,” stating that Kiev is unable to find people willing to fight for it. He claimed that 30% to 70% of troops on the front line refuse to go into combat and seek opportunities to desert. According to Arestovich, the refuseniks “have passed a sentence on this system, they have sealed its end.” Zelensky’s statement that the Ukrainian military leadership wants to mobilize up to 500,000 people for the war effort appears to be a form “trolling” by the commanders, Arestovich said.
The target is absolutely unrealistic, he claimed. With Kiev ramping up the pressure on draft dodgers, they will soon stop running from conscription teams and start shooting at them, the ex-official predicted. People of cultures other than Ukrainian, be they Russian or something else, do not want to fight for a monoethnic Ukraine because Kiev discriminates against them, the commentator noted. The same is true for people who live in territories under Russian control, which Kiev wants to take back by force. Ukraine “has nothing to offer to the residents of Donbass and Crimea, except for a second-rate citizen status,” he said. Meanwhile, Ukrainians who support the monoethnic project may have other issues with the government, be it a grudge over an unfair economic system or lack of political liberties.
“We live in a country of prohibitions, a country where freedoms are suppressed… where you are caught and forced into the army. Who would want to fight for such a nation?” Arestovich asked. He claimed that only by radically reforging itself as a multiethnic and multicultural nation, as befits its democratic composition, and putting its national interest first can Ukraine have a future. Such a Ukraine could convince people to live and die for it, rather than seek opportunities to flee. That kind of Ukraine could also reach a deal with Russia and the West on a viable European security architecture, thus eliminating the cause of the current conflict, he argued.
“..the more ludicrous Team Biden’s idea about Russia’s threat to Europe gets, the more desperately they stick to it. “I saw this happen before,” McGovern said..”
Joe Biden claimed earlier this month that the US can’t let Russian President Vladimir Putin win in Ukraine since “he won’t stop there. “[If] Putin attacks a NATO ally — if he keeps going and then he attacks a NATO ally — we’re committed as a NATO member to defend every inch of NATO territory, and we’ll have something that we don’t seek and that we don’t have today,” the US president stated on December 6.In response, Russian President Putin called Biden’s claim “complete nonsense”, adding that he believes that his American counterpart understands that. “Russia has no reason, no interest — no geopolitical interest, neither economic, political nor military — to fight with NATO countries,” Putin emphasized on December 17.
“The more I hear Biden and his advisers, the more I think they actually believe that the Russians are out to take over Europe like us,” Ray McGovern, a former CIA officer who prepared the president’s daily brief during the Ronald Reagan administration, told Sputnik. “It reminds me of back in the sixties when I was working on Russian policy toward Vietnam and Southeast Asia. The domino theory or the Russians theory, the Russians were trying to take over the whole world, especially Southeast Asia. Not only that, but Indonesia, the whole world just better go down the drain if the Russians prevail in Vietnam. “The “domino theory” meant that “when one nation falls to communism the impact is such as to weaken the resistance of other countries and facilitate, if not cause, their fall to communism,” as per a 1964 memo from the Board of National Estimates to the director of central intelligence. The US used the now-discredited theory to justify its involvement in the Vietnam War years after its unfortunate military campaign in Korea.
Eventually, the US got bogged down in Vietnam, with its leadership continuing to stick to the false narrative. The same is happening now in Ukraine, according to the CIA veteran: the more ludicrous Team Biden’s idea about Russia’s threat to Europe gets, the more desperately they stick to it. “I saw this happen before,” McGovern said. “There was a false narrative. We were winning in Vietnam and our forces were just about to complete the victory, except General Westmoreland was saying, and this is late 1967, ‘We just need 208 more troops because we’ve got to go into Vietnam, right up to the Chinese border, and then we’ll win for sure’. Now, that was delusional. That was crazy. And, you know, those of us who have been around a while knew what happened last time we went up to the Chinese border in Korea. Right?”
“..221,571 Ukrainian men have arrived in Germany since then and 189,484 remained in the country..”
Ukraine will boost the size of its army one way or another, a Defense Ministry spokesman said on Friday as cited by local media, adding that citizens should not delude themselves into thinking that only volunteers will have to fight. President Vladimir Zelensky previously stated that the Ukrainian military was looking to enroll between 450,000 and 500,000 people into the armed forces. Illarion Pavlyuk, the ministry spokesman, said on national television that the enlistment goals will be achieved through a combination of volunteer recruitment and mandatory conscription.“We urge people to join the armed forces voluntarily, without waiting for a mobilization summons, and offer them the chance to choose their specialty,” he said. “But it does not mean that only those who want to serve will do, or that one can pick from only non-combat jobs.”
The official said the military would prefer to see more volunteers but that it will make up the difference through mobilization. Zelensky reported the target draft number during a press conference on Tuesday. He implied that he had reservations about some of the ideas being floated by the military leadership, such as mobilizing women, and claimed that the plan would come at a price tag of $13.4 billion for Ukraine.German media reported this week that Ukrainian Defense Minister Rustem Umerov wanted male citizens aged between 25 and 60 who reside in foreign nations to report for mobilization or face sanctions and dishonor.Kiev shut its border for men of conscription age after the hostilities with Russia erupted in February last year, banning anyone without a special waiver from leaving. However, the tabloid Bild reported that 221,571 Ukrainian men have arrived in Germany since then and 189,484 remained in the country.
In comments to Ukrainian media on Wednesday, Pavlyuk claimed that German journalists had “shifted the emphasis” of the minister’s remarks. He clarified that at this time no legal mechanisms to pressure or punish those dodging the draft on foreign soil are being considered.Meanwhile, Mikhail Podoliak, a senior aide to Zelensky, suggested on Friday that Kiev could convince host nations to strip social benefits and residency permits of draft-dodgers in order to coerce them to return.On Tuesday, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu estimated Ukrainian losses since the start of the conflict at over 383,000, with roughly half of the casualties sustained during the so-called summer counteroffensive, which Kiev launched in early June.
“..Kirill Budanov, the chief of Ukrainian intelligence, said last week that forcing people without motivation into service would not make the army stronger..”
Every Ukrainian citizen, and not only the members of the military, must serve their country during its conflict with Russia, Aleksey Danilov, the Secretary of the Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council, has said. In an interview with local media on Thursday, the security chief signaled that the era when some Ukrainians could turn a blind eye to the fighting was over. “This kind of calm, when… it was believed that the war was purely a matter for the military, and the rest of the country could live its own life… has passed, it must end, it doesn’t work that way,” he insisted. “Everyone should take part in this war, and not selectively: while someone is fighting, others are throwing chips in the casino. This is not fair,” the official said. At the same time, Danilov noted that Kiev’s planned mobilization drive would not last only one day or one month, but that the whole process could take at least a year.
His comments come after Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky revealed earlier this week that the military had proposed calling up an additional 450-500 thousand people, and that the government wanted to allocate an additional 500 billion hryvnias ($13.3 billion) to the effort. He also stressed that Ukrainian authorities must prioritize “justice” when replenishing the military’s ranks. Meanwhile, on Thursday, Ukrainian Defense Minister Rustem Umerov said all Ukrainian men who had left the country since start of the conflict would be invited to report to recruitment centers, warning that those who fail to comply could face sanctions. However, Kirill Budanov, the chief of Ukrainian intelligence, said last week that forcing people without motivation into service would not make the army stronger.
Ukraine announced a general mobilization shortly after the start of the conflict with Russia in February 2022, barring most men aged between 18 and 60 from leaving the country. The campaign, however, has been marred by widespread draft dodging and corruption. Ukrainian officials have repeatedly signaled plans to recruit more soldiers amid Kiev’s faltering counteroffensive which has been underway since early summer but failed to gain any substantial ground. Moscow has described Ukraine’s losses during the push as catastrophic, estimating them at about 160,000 casualties.
“..the German constitution forbids forcing any German national to serve in the military with arms in their hands and he “cannot imagine” Berlin “forcing people from other countries to do so.”
Ukrainian men of fighting age who fled the country amid the conflict with Russia should be forced to return, Mikhail Podoliak, a senior aide to President Vladimir Zelensky, has said. A set of restrictions that would limit their access to aid and services in their places of stay is required to achieve this goal, he told Ukraine’s Channel 24 in an interview published on Friday. Podoliak’s words support comments made by Defense Minister Rustem Umerov, who told Germany’s Bild tabloid earlier in December that all Ukrainian men of military age living abroad were to be summoned to recruitment centers. The minister also warned that those who fail to comply could face sanctions.The Ukrainian Defense Ministry then clarified his statements by saying that a mobilization mechanism for Ukrainians living abroad was “not on the agenda.”
In his interview on Friday, Podoliak said that Umerov had “a right idea.” According to the Zelensky aide, no one should be allowed to just “sit out” the conflict and shed responsibility for their nation. “They should be equal,” Podoliak said, referring to Ukrainians living abroad and those who stayed and are now being mobilized. “Those should be the consultations with the governments of foreign nations where our men are residing,” he said, adding that the talks should be focused on “whether they [the Ukrainians] can further get temporary residence permit, have certain preferential treatment, get aid” there. Podoliak also said that Umerov was “probably” already considering a set of measures that would “give our guys abroad an opportunity to make a choice: either to get drafted or… lose certain opportunities granted to people that temporarily left Ukraine.”
His words came amid reports that Ukraine is struggling to refill the ranks of its army and is taking additional measures to enhance border controls amid daily attempts by men desperate to illegally flee the country. In December, Zelensky said that the nation’s military had proposed calling up an additional 450,000-500,000 people, and that the government wanted to allocate an additional 500 billion hryvnia ($13.3 billion) to the effort.
Earlier this week, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu estimated that Ukraine had lost over 383,000 soldiers since the start of the conflict, adding that roughly half of the casualties were sustained during its much-hyped summer counteroffensive. Some of Ukraine’s Western backers have already expressed their opposition to plans to force Ukrainian refugees to go back and fight. “It will not be the case that we are now forcing people to get drafted or [join] the military service against their will,” German Justice Minister Marco Buschmann told journalists on Friday. The minister said that the German constitution forbids forcing any German national to serve in the military with arms in their hands and he “cannot imagine” Berlin “forcing people from other countries to do so.”
“..Berlin would not “force people to do compulsory military service or military service against their will.”
Ukraine’s new mobilization drive will have no practical consequences for Ukrainians living in Germany, the country’s Justice Minister Marco Buschmann told the German Press Agency (DPA) on Friday. Kiev’s Defense Minister Rustem Umerov had told German newspaper Bild on Thursday that calls for people to report to recruitment centers would be sent out to all citizens of military age – including Ukrainians living abroad. He also warned that anyone who ignores the “invitations” would face sanctions, although he did not discuss the potential penalties. “It’s not a punishment to defend and serve your country. It’s an honor,” he stated. It comes after Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky revealed earlier this week that the military had proposed drafting an additional 450,000 to 500,000 people, and planned to allocate a further 500 billion hryvnias ($13.3 billion) towards the effort.
Bushmann said Berlin would not “force people to do compulsory military service or military service against their will.” He explained that it was a positive thing that war refugees had been accepted into Germany via a simplified procedure and given the opportunity to work.“I cannot imagine, as our constitution stipulates that German citizens do not have to serve in the armed forces against their will, that we can force people from other countries to do so,” he concluded. More than 221,000 Ukrainian men arrived in Germany after the conflict broke out, with almost 190,000 of them still in the country, according to German authorities.
Ukraine announced a general mobilization shortly after the beginning of the conflict with Russia in February 2022, prohibiting most men aged between 18 to 60 from leaving the country. Kiev has signaled plans to expand recruitment drives for more soldiers amid its stalled counteroffensive, which has failed to show any substantial results since its start in early summer.Moscow’s Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu, speaking at a ministerial meeting on Tuesday, estimated Kiev’s losses during the push at 159,000 killed and wounded, and the total casualties sustained by the Armed Forces of Ukraine at 383,000.
“..it is extremely difficult for the US ruling circles to accept the changing world order. Many of them are simply organically incapable of moving away from thinking in terms of their own superiority..”
Russia-US relations could sink to a new low if Washington makes more “reckless” decisions regarding the Ukraine conflict, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov has warned. In an interview with Interfax published on Friday, the Russian official accused the US of pursuing a “misguided” and “dangerous” policy aimed at inflicting a “strategic defeat” on Moscow. These actions have left bilateral relations in a “comatose state,” Ryabkov said. “I can’t rule out that at some point in the future… Washington won’t go below this near-zero level that our relations are currently at, if there is no brightening when it comes to… views on what is happening [regarding] Russia and Ukraine,” he stated.
A “complete breakdown” in ties is even possible, Ryabkov added, suggesting this would mean a dramatic reduction in the respective diplomatic presence in the two countries. Even though the US is wary of completely dismantling relations, it is “not ready to find common ground… even in theory,” the diplomat further claimed.According to Ryabkov, while the two powers continue dialogue in several narrow areas, this “equilibrium could collapse at any moment due to Washington’s recklessness.” The seizure of Russian assets or military escalation could be among the triggers for a further deterioration, he said. Ryabkov stressed that Russia is not seeking to sever ties, but cautioned that “the diplomatic relations in themselves are not a totem to be worshipped, or a sacred cow to be protected.” “We are ready for any scenario,” he emphasized.
Russia and the US could potentially restore relations, although this will be hard, Ryabkov acknowledged. “The problem is that it is extremely difficult for the US ruling circles to accept the changing world order. Many of them are simply organically incapable of moving away from thinking in terms of their own superiority,” he explained. Ryabkov’s comments come after the New York Times reported on Thursday that the White House had intensified talks to seize $300 billion in Russian assets blocked in the West, which could be used to help Ukraine. Moscow has repeatedly denounced the freezing of its funds as “theft,” warning of retaliation if the West goes ahead with the confiscation of the assets.
“..to brand someone a criminal, there must be a record of indictment and conviction for a particular crime, and that, in the case of Mr. Trump, a politically-motived fairy tale about an “insurrection” doesn’t cut it.”
And just like that — snap ! — the news about the Colorado Supreme Court’s droll action against candidate DJ Trump vanished from the front page (or top screens) of The New York Times. Do you know why? I’ll tell you: Because the political Left has finally managed to embarrass itself with a “lawfare” gambit so nakedly fatuous that it exposes the faction’s drive to destroy the election process, and with it our country. This is what you get from a regime that faked its way to power and now must strain to cover up its long train of crimes, abuses, and effronteries to common sense, while running out of tricks to keep fooling even its own deranged followers. Somehow, the act of kicking a leading candidate off the ballot has finally registered as inconsistent with “defending our democracy.”
Of course, the reckless abuse of law — “lawfare” — proceeds from the Left’s disrespect for boundaries and limits, which is exactly what law in principle concerns itself with. And from there it’s a quick leap into totalizing bad faith, the operating system for government under an imposter president, “Joe Biden.” Suddenly, mere days before Christmas, when the people want to be preoccupied with things other than politics, events merge explosively to shape the fate of the nation. In a sane world, the US Supreme Court would not just summarily strike down the Colorado ruling, but would issue a career-ending rebuke to the brain-damaged state justices who managed to not learn a basic principle of due process: innocent until proven guilty — that to brand someone a criminal, there must be a record of indictment and conviction for a particular crime, and that, in the case of Mr. Trump, a politically-motived fairy tale about an “insurrection” doesn’t cut it.
Also, in a sane world interested in truth and justice, the Republican-majority Congress would have months ago convened new hearings about the Jan 6/21 Capitol riot to undo the manifold perfidious frauds instigated by the previous Democrat-majority committee under Chairman Bennie Thompson. By now, testimony should have been compelled from Nancy Pelosi, the then Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund, and former Defense Secretary Chris Miller about Ms. Pelosi’s refusal to call in national guard troops to reinforce security around the building, and to answer for the odd behavior of the Capitol Police, such as opening doors for the mob and then serving as ushers to show off the place. It seems obvious that many elected Republicans also have an interest in supporting the Jan 6/21 “insurrection” fairy tale. Do you still wonder why the evil entity infesting Washington is called “the blob”?
The Substack blogger who styles himself as El Gato Malo offers the alluring theory that a SCOTUS ruling on whether the 14th Amendment clauses that were applied to the presidency in the Colorado case, could enable Special Counsel Jack Smith to slip-in a superseding indictment (replacing the original indictment) in his DC Jan 6 case against Mr. Trump with new insurrection / rebellion charges, thus setting-up a fortified argument for states to chuck Mr. Trump off any ballot. More “lawfare,” you see. Whatever it takes. . .!
If you have absolutely nothing to do this Christmas…
What keeps me writing? Narcissism. I love the hugs. Catherine Austin Fitts put my entire writeup on the coming pension crisis in her Solari Reports noting, “I loved reading your year-end War and Peace.” Larry Summers told me “you have no filter.” My first Covid writeup in 2020 was said to be in the hands of Steve Scalise’s staff for uploading to the Congressional record. (I have no idea if it made it.) As outlined below, I have wonderful chats with brilliant people on the podcast circuit.
There are the Joe Sixpacks who have no voice and reach out in comments sections or by emails thanking me for voicing their concerns. So many people just want a voice. Tweeters with 20 followers are thrilled when they get a response because somebody heard them. These are the guys who listened to Oliver Anthony’s Richmen North of Richmond and were brought to tears.3 The media tried to tell us Oliver wrote an anthem for angry white guys, but montages of black guys rockin’ to his lyrics proliferated on social media. When Elon Musk publicly told Disney’s Bob Iger to “Go fuck yourself” for trying to blackmail him by pulling ad revenues, that was the fuckoff heard ‘round the world. I don’t know if Elon is a good person—probably not—but he is playing one on the internet, and he is very special in his own way.
Good writing on important subjects does not go out of date. If something is not important a month or even a year later, it was not important the day it was written. I try to touch third rails. If a 68-year-old tenured professor can’t speak up, then who can? It gets me in trouble occasionally. I got canceled pretty seriously in 2020, sleeping with a shotgun fully committed to taking at least one of those death-threatening neo-Stalinist Antifa curb stompers to the light with me if they had showed up at my house. Regular readers certainly have detected elevated anger as I witness the world’s events unfold in ways that were unimaginable a few years back. I have no intention of pussy footing around my foes. I would love to see that mass-murdering Tony Fauci fed to the spirit cookers.
If you came out of the Covid pandemic and not figured out that the entire narrative was an exercise in authoritarianism and possibly a largely peaceful depopulation, I think you are pretty lame. If, however, you grasp the Covid story, you probably have also figured out that the CIA whacked Kennedy, 911 was an inside job, and every war in at least a century was started with one or more false flag events. If so, Pat yourself on the back for grasping many big issues. Robbie Parker understands…
Maybe the Covid scam and all the associated lies proffered by credentialed experts have you wondering if the credentialed climate experts are lying too. Climate change, in my opinion, is the biggest scam in history. If, by contrast, you are supergluing yourself to roads during rush hour and throwing tomato soup onto masterpieces to save humanity, you suffer Munchausen by progressive and are a member of the biggest cult in history. Please—I beg you—when Reverend Jones gives you the nod, drink. (I have returned to climate change again this year, just to top off previous thoughts with some fresh ones and to piss of The Cult.)
Wow amazing 🧐 pic.twitter.com/FYpR9Xki3S
— Science (@ScienceGuys_) December 22, 2023
Diving with this alligator in Florida Everglades This is reptile expert Chris Gillet,
— Science girl (@gunsnrosesgirl3) December 22, 2023
Mommy owl and her babies.. 😊 pic.twitter.com/oCF1OVziE4
— Buitengebieden (@buitengebieden) December 22, 2023
Sarcosuchus is an extinct genus of crocodyliform that lived during the Early Cretaceous, 133 to 112 million years ago. The largest specimen reached 9–9.5 meters (29.5–31.2 ft) long. This is a comparison between its skull a nile crocodile’s.
Still staggeringly beautiful all these years on.
RHAPSODY IN BLUE (1945)#GeorgeGershwin
— Michael Warburton (@MichaelWarbur17) December 22, 2023
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