Jun 192024
 


Giuseppe Leone Ragusa Sicily 1953

 

The West Is Lighting the Fuse of War (Paul Craig Roberts)
Russian Ambassador To US Outlines ‘Thorny’ Path To Peace (RT)
Kiev Better Accept Russia’s Peace Proposal – Medvedev (TASS)
Hegemon Orders Europe: Bet On War And Steal Russia’s Money (Pepe Escobar)
Crossing Moscow’s Red Line ‘Permissible’ – Austria (RT)
West Won’t Host Next Ukraine ‘Peace Conference’ – Switzerland (RT)
Prisoners Drafted Into Ukrainian Military ‘Will Run Like Forrest Gump’ (RT)
Steve Bannon Predicts Left Will Sentence Trump To Multiple Years In Prison (MN)
Court Rejects Trump’s Gag Order Appeal (RT)
Confused Biden Clips Are ‘Deepfakes’ – White House (RT)
Mark Rutte: The Choice for NATO Secretary General? (Sp.)
The BRICS Weigh In On Palestine (Pepe Escobar)
US Cryptocurrency as an Offshore Banking Center (Michael Hudson)

 

 

 

 

Bannon June 17

 

 

Trump ad

 

 

Alex Tucker

 

 

Angels

 

 

Anti-corruption bill

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Putin has made one last effort to state conditions for ending the conflict.”

The West Is Lighting the Fuse of War (Paul Craig Roberts)

Putin’s intention after his deception by the West with the Minsk Agreement, was only to drive Ukrainian forces out of the Russian areas that have now been reincorporated into Russia. Apparently Putin did not realize the extent to which the West would involve itself and expand the war. Now that Putin faces an outbreak of a larger war, he clearly stated the conditions for ending the conflict. He said that Russian military action will cease when the remaining Ukrainian forces are withdrawn from the Russian populated areas that have been reunited with Russia and when Ukraine agrees that the country will not become a member of NATO or have foreign bases and missiles on its territory. These are reasonable and generous terms. If these terms are refused, Ukraine faces further conquest and harsher future conditions for ending the conflict.

When Ukraine was broken off from Russia following the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Russian provinces which Soviet leaders had attached to Ukraine should have been left in Russia. Whether or not this was a failure of foresight or malicious intent, it was a mistake that resulted in a conflict that has the potential of engulfing the world. The difference between the 20th century Cold War and the 21st century hot war is that in the Cold War era the US and Soviet leadership, understanding the fatal nature of nuclear weapons, were committed to reducing tensions and building trust, whereas in the 21st century only Russia has sought mutual understanding and mutual security. Washington has fomented conflict and raised an existential threat to Russia by expanding NATO to Russia’s borders and overthrowing governments of former Russian provinces. To avoid war Putin has accepted continuing provocations and insults.

But now faced with such reckless and irresponsible proposals as NATO troops in Ukraine and missiles hitting deep into Russia, Putin has made one last effort to state conditions for ending the conflict. The conditions are immensely better than the outbreak of conflict that would destroy Europe and the United States.The danger today is much worse than the Cuban Missile Crisis. In those days Washington recognized the danger. Today Washington does not. President John F. Kennedy realized that the US had provoked Soviet missiles in Cuba by placing US missiles in Turkey. Kennedy and Khrushchev made a mutual security agreement and both removed the missiles. Putin’s diplomatic effort during December 2021 and February 2022 for a mutual security agreement was cold-shouldered by Washington, NATO, and the EU. With the outbreak of major war looming,

Biden has still not met with Putin. Instead, Biden has provoked animosity by calling Putin the new Hitler. This is an unprecedented level or reckless irresponsibility.The question before us is: Will Putin continue to accept provocations in hope that a change in the Washington regime in the November election will permit the West to come to its senses, or is Serbian President Vucic correct that the train has left the station?As the Western world lacks a truthful media, the people might be indoctrinated with the “Russian threat.” Even if the people realize that the threat is Washington’s pressure on Russia, the people are impotent to affect government policy. Among the Western governments, public opinion is something to be manipulated, not something to which to listen. I believe the West has convinced Putin that the West intends war. Not even Putin has an endless amount of patience. Instead of recognizing the dangerous situation and sitting down with Putin to defuse the situation, the West is lighting the fuse.

Ursula

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“Putin’s clear and verifiable conditions stand in stark contrast to “idle talk and failed conferences” of the West, Antonov said.”

Russian Ambassador To US Outlines ‘Thorny’ Path To Peace (RT)

Moscow’s proposals for ending the Ukraine conflict are specific and realistic, unlike the “advertising campaign” coming from the West, Russian ambassador in Washington, Anatoly Antonov, has said. Newsweek published an interview with Antonov on Tuesday, in which the Russian envoy elaborated on President Vladimir Putin’s statements last week, outlining the conditions for starting peace talks with Kiev. “There is a path to peace, even if it is thorny,” Antonov said. It involves “withdrawal of the Ukrainian Armed Forces from four regions of Russia; confirmation of the status of Crimea, Sevastopol, [Donetsk People’s Republic], [Lugansk People’s Republic], Kherson and Zaporozhye regions as subjects of the Russian Federation; Kiev’s refusal to join NATO; Ukraine’s status as neutral, nonaligned and nuclear-free state; its demilitarization and denazification; lifting of Western sanctions; [and] ensuring the rights, freedoms and interests of Russian-speaking citizens of the republic,” the diplomat explained.

“Talks on the above-mentioned issues should be conducted without ‘imperial’ dictates and orders from the White House,” Antonov added. “It is high time the US recognized the futility of constant pursuit to enforce its will on all countries and realized that it will no longer be possible to deter the growing shift towards multipolarity.” Scary stories about Moscow plotting to attack NATO once Ukraine is defeated are simply “an embodiment of the US intentions to keep a tight rein on its satellites, primarily in Europe,” according to Antonov. “The aim is to finally turn the continent into the US ‘back yard’, which is not entitled to its own opinions nor its own history.” Such policies are actually undermining US leadership, though American policymakers “prefer not to notice” that, Antonov added.

The purpose of the peace conference in Switzerland this weekend was “purely opportunistic: to create an illusion of widespread support for the ‘peace formula’ in various capitals, but in reality, to hush up any doubts about the legitimacy of the Kiev regime, which has already been bankrupt for a long time, both politically and economically,” the ambassador said. Putin’s clear and verifiable conditions stand in stark contrast to “idle talk and failed conferences” of the West, Antonov said. The “advertising campaign” by the US and its allies intends not to stop, “but to prolong the bloody ‘project’ that the West has been implementing for more than 10 years,” since the 2014 coup in Kiev, he added.

Russia pursues dialogue and peace, and is “ready for a serious, thoughtful conversation” without any deadlines or rushed photo-ops, Antonov noted. What Moscow wants is “truly equal and indivisible security in Eurasia, based on mutual respect for one and all. ”In a new political architecture reflecting the transition to multipolarity, there would be “no place for aggressive political and economic dominance of individual nations,” or division into blocs, Antonov said. “If in response we continue to hear only Russophobic barking and calls to use more Western weapons and economic sanctions against us, global risks will only increase,” Antonov concluded. “I am sure this is not in the best interests of the citizens of the United States.”

Sachs

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“..all this will not work to the benefit of the current Ukrainian authorities. So they have to hurry while they still can..”

Kiev Better Accept Russia’s Peace Proposal – Medvedev (TASS)

Ukraine would be wise to accept Russian President Vladimir Putin’s peace proposal, otherwise Russian troops will press on and make life even more difficult for Kiev, Russian Security Council Deputy Chairman Dmitry Medvedev said. “Frankly speaking, I think that the president has said everything, I mean that the next peace proposal Russia makes will be worse for the Ukrainian authorities, no matter how we treat them. Now they have the opportunity to consider Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin’s peace proposal and at least try to make peace and end this part of the conflict,” he told reporters. Otherwise, according to Medvedev, the Russian offensive will continue. “And it will be difficult to say where the lines of the buffer zone that Russian President Vladimir Putin mentioned will be. It’s very likely that all this will not work to the benefit of the current Ukrainian authorities. So they have to hurry while they still can,” he added.

However, according to the official, Kiev has already responded with a refusal at the conference in Switzerland, “rejecting any proposals from the outset, taking the discussion back to the very beginning.” “In vain. So it will be worse from now on,” he concluded. On June 14, Russian President Vladimir Putin made new peace proposals for resolving the conflict in Ukraine at a meeting with Russian diplomats. These include the recognition of the status of Crimea, the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, and the Zaporozhye and Kherson Regions as part of Russia, the consolidation of Ukraine’s non-aligned and nuclear-free status, its demilitarization and denazification, and the lifting of anti-Russian sanctions. The Ukrainian side rejected the initiative. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky called Moscow’s proposal an ultimatum, while his adviser Mikhail Podolyak said that the new Russian initiative allegedly does not contain a “real peace proposal.”

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“Russia’s real target is to create a whole new security system for the Eurasian space..”

Hegemon Orders Europe: Bet On War And Steal Russia’s Money (Pepe Escobar)

The Swiss “peace” kabuki came and went – and the winner was Vladimir Putin. He didn’t even have to show up. None of the Big Players did. Or in case they sent their emissaries, there was significant refusal to sign the vacuous final declaration – as in BRICS members Brazil, India, Saudi Arabia, UAE and South Africa. Without BRICS, there’s absolutely nothing the collective West – as in The Hegemon and assorted vassals – can do to alter the proxy war chessboard in Ukraine. In his carefully calibrated speech to diplomats and the leadership of Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Putin delineated an incredibly restrained and strategic approach to solve the Ukraine problem. In the context of the Hegemon’s escalatory green light – actually in practice for several months now – for Kiev to attack deeper into the Russian Federation, Putin’s offer was extremely generous. That is a direct offer to the Hegemon and the collective West – as the sweaty T-shirt actor in Kiev, apart from illegitimate, is beyond irrelevant.

Predictably, NATO – via that epileptic slab of Norwegian wood – already proclaimed its refusal to negotiate, even as some relatively awake members of the Verkhovna Rada (Ukraine’s parliament) started discussing the offer, according to Duma Chairman Vyacheslav Volodin. Moscow sees the Verkhovna Rada as the only legitimate entity in Ukraine – and the only one with which would be possible to reach an agreement. Russian UN representative Vasily Nebenzya cut to the chase – diplomatically: if the generous proposal is refused, next time conditions for starting negotiations will be “different”. And “far more unfavorable”, according to Duma Defense Committee head Andrei Kartapolov. As Nebenzya stressed that in case of a refusal the collective West will bear full responsibility for further bloodshed, Kartapolov elaborated on the Big Picture: Russia’s real target is to create a whole new security system for the Eurasian space.

And that, of course, is anathema to the Hegemon’s elites. Putin’s security vision for Eurasia harks back to this legendary speech at the Munich Security Conference in 2007. Now, with the steady advance of an irreversible multi-nodal (italics mine) and multi-centric new system of international relations, the Kremlin is pressing for an urgent solution – considering the extremely dangerous escalation of these past few months. Putin once again had to remind the deaf, dumb and blind of the obvious: “Calls to inflict a strategic defeat on Russia, which has the largest arsenal of nuclear weapons, demonstrate the extreme adventurism of Western politicians. They either do not understand the scale of the threat they themselves create, or they are simply obsessed with the belief in their own immunity and their own exclusivity. Both can turn into a tragedy”. They remain deaf, dumb and blind.

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Austria is not in NATO.

Crossing Moscow’s Red Line ‘Permissible’ – Austria (RT)

Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer does not perceive the decision by NATO nations to allow Kiev to use their weapons against Russia outside of what they consider Ukrainian territory as a cause for concern. Speaking with the NZZ media group, Neuhammer said he disagreed with Defense Minister Klaudia Tanner, who said earlier this month that the US and its allies had crossed a “red line” by granting Ukraine such permission. The interview with Nehammer was published on Monday, after his liberal-conservative Austrian People’s Party (OVP) lost convincingly to the nationalist Freedom Party of Austria (FPO) in this month’s European Parliament election. The chancellor said the debate on use of Western arms had gone “in the wrong political direction” in a shameful way. His stance is that “under international law, such attacks on Russia are permissible.”

Moscow could withdraw troops and see Western military aid to Kiev “automatically reduced,” he said. The previous restriction on Ukraine’s use of US weapons was imposed by President Joe Biden to “prevent World War III.” According to the media, Washington relaxed it and allowed limited strikes on Russia’s Belgorod Region due to Russian advances in neighboring Kharkov Region. Multiple NATO nations have made similar policy changes regarding arms that they donate to Ukraine. The Austrian foreign minister said that while she perceived that as escalatory, “as a militarily neutral state, it is not our place to judge.” Tanner added that she was happy to hear assurances by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg that members of the US-led bloc will not be required to send troops to Ukraine.

Moscow has described the Ukraine conflict as part of a proxy war on Russia, in which Ukrainians serve as “cannon fodder.” Western nations are de facto participating parties due to the level of their involvement and the influence they have on Ukrainian actions, according to Russian officials. President Vladimir Putin has stated that Russia could send weapon systems similar to those provided to Ukraine to enemies of the US and its allies to be used against Western military assets. This path of escalation leads to an outcome that neither side will like, he warned. He accused his opponents of spreading “Russian narratives” about Ukraine and declared that unlike centrists, “radicals have no answers and are offering pseudo-solutions,” referring to populist forces surging across the EU.

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Saudi?

West Won’t Host Next Ukraine ‘Peace Conference’ – Switzerland (RT)

The next conference on the Ukraine conflict will not take place in the West, Swiss Ambassador Gabriel Luechinger has stated. The senior diplomat, who helped organize last weekend’s gathering at Switzerland’s Burgenstock Resort, indicated that discussions with potential hosts are already underway. In the run-up to the event, a number of nations declined to attend, with China announcing that it would not be sending representatives to Switzerland. Beijing argued that the absence of Russia at the conference would make any attempts at peace futile – an assertion echoed by several countries. Moscow stated in March that it would not attend even if invited, as it would likely be based on Vladimir Zelensky’s ‘peace formula’, which Russia considers to be unrealistic and an ultimatum.

In an interview with Swiss broadcaster SRF on Monday, Luechinger said: “What is clear is that the next peace summit will not be in Europe, and will not take place in the West.” The senior diplomat revealed that several nations had been approached at the conference regarding a potential role in organizing the next summit. “It is now up to them to decide,” he added. “In the next weeks, I think, things will start moving.” Asked whether Saudi Arabia could host a meeting, Luechinger hinted that it could be an option, without going into detail. He also stressed that “Russia should be integrated in the peace process in some way.” While Ukraine has touted the conference at the Burgenstock Resort as a success, around a dozen countries that took part in the talks did not sign the final communique, including India, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, the UAE, Mexico, Thailand, Indonesia, Jordan, and Iraq.

The document did not include many of the key points of Kiev’s ‘peace formula’. It called for the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant to be transferred under Ukrainian control, as well as unrestricted access to ports in the Black Sea and Sea of Azov, and the release of all prisoners of war. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Saturday that Moscow “wants to get together next time at a more substantive and promising event.” Last Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin outlined the conditions for a ceasefire, which include the withdrawal of Ukrainian troops from all territories claimed by Moscow, as well as the renunciation of Kiev’s NATO aspirations. The Ukrainian government and its Western backers have dismissed the proposal, calling it an ultimatum.

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Run away.

Prisoners Drafted Into Ukrainian Military ‘Will Run Like Forrest Gump’ (RT)

More than 2,750 convicts have been released from prison to join the Ukrainian military and help ease manpower shortages, the Washington Post reported on Sunday. Some service members, however, have voiced concerns about the reliability of former inmates. Ukrainian leader Vladimir Zelensky last month approved a bill that allows certain categories of convicts to be paroled if they agree to enlist in the military and fight Russia. Former inmates will be assigned to special high-risk assault units, although anyone convicted of crimes such as murdering more than two people, rape, terrorism, corruption, or undermining Ukraine’s national security, is ineligible for the program. According to the Washington Post, many of the convicts joining the fight were “jailed for dealing drugs, stealing phones, and committing armed assaults and murders.”

Ukrainian Justice Minister Denis Malyuska insisted to the newspaper that “the motivation of our inmates is stronger than our ordinary soldiers,” arguing that they are enlisting not only to be released, but also because they “want to protect their country and they want to turn the page.” The minister also claimed there is “competition between military commanders” to recruit from prisons as they want to address manpower shortages. Some disagree, however, and one unnamed official expressed concern about possible desertion by former inmates. “They’re all going to run like Forrest Gump,” he stated, adding that despite these misgivings, the measure is still necessary. The official noted that he would prefer to see Ukraine lower the draft age to 18, which he said would allow Kiev to fill the ranks with young and fit soldiers, rather than convicts. He admitted, however, that this measure is unlikely anytime soon.

Malyuska said he expects at least 4,000 men to join the military in the first stage of recruitment. In May, he estimated the total number of convicts ready to enlist at between 10,000 to 20,000. However, the Strana.ua outlet cast doubt on those figures, pointing out that there are a total of 28,000 inmates in Ukraine, including women and those unfit for service. The outlet also claimed, citing its own poll, that very few are actually willing to volunteer. Kiev has tried to address acute manpower shortages by passing two bills this spring, one of which lowered the draft age from 27 to 25, while the other significantly tightened mobilization rules. Earlier this month, Russian President Vladimir Putin estimated Ukraine’s monthly combat losses at 50,000 soldiers.

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“They don’t care about this election, they don’t care how many votes we get. They’re gonna fight us every step of the way..”

Steve Bannon Predicts Left Will Sentence Trump To Multiple Years In Prison (MN)

Former Trump advisor Steve Bannon has warned that the left will stop at nothing to prevent Trump from regaining the White House and that they plan to sentence him to “multiple years in prison” next month. Speaking at Turning Point Action’s “The People’s Convention” in Detroit, Bannon warned “You know on the 11th of July, they’re gonna sentence him for multiple years in prison. You understand that, right?” “They don’t care about this election, they don’t care how many votes we get. They’re gonna fight us every step of the way,” Bannon further proclaimed. He added, “Winning in November is just the first step. From November fifth to the sixth, Jamie Raskin is going to try to steal the election on January 6th. They’re already talking about it right now.” “They’re already going to say, ‘President Trump’s an insurrectionist and we will never certify an election of an insurrectionist,” Bannon further predicted.

Elsewhere during the speech, Bannon stated that Trump’s inner circle is planning to go after those who are currently weaponising the justice system against him. “We’re going to get every single receipt. And to the fullest extension of the law, you’re going to be investigated, prosecuted, and incarcerated,” Bannon vowed, adding “This has nothing to do with retribution. It has nothing to do with revenge… this has to do with justice.” Bannon’s comments come in the wake of a Rasmussen poll last week that found a whopping two-thirds of Americans believe the outcome of the 2024 US presidential election will be affected by cheating. The survey found that of those two thirds, 40 percent are ‘very concerned,’ and only thirty-one percent aren’t concerned, including just 14 percent who said they are ‘not at all concerned’ about cheating in the election.

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“..The appeals court has ruled that “no substantial constitutional question is directly involved..”

“.. Joe Biden is making Trump’s conviction a centerpiece of his 2024 campaign and will most likely bring it up at the first presidential debate, scheduled for later this month – while his Republican rival won’t be able to respond.”

Court Rejects Trump’s Gag Order Appeal (RT)

Former US President Donald Trump remains banned from speaking about his criminal case in Manhattan, even after the jury’s verdict, the New York Court of Appeals said on Tuesday. Judge Juan Merchan imposed the gag order on Trump during his trial on 34 counts of “falsifying business records,” which District Attorney Alvin Bragg alleged had somehow violated campaign finance laws and improperly influenced the 2016 election. The jury found the former president guilty on all counts at the end of May. Trump’s lawyers have protested the gag order from the start, pointing out that it directly impacts his 2024 presidential campaign. The appeals court has ruled that “no substantial constitutional question is directly involved,” so the order can stay in place.

“The Gag Order wrongfully silences the leading candidate for President of the United States, President Trump, at the height of his campaign,” Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung said on Tuesday, adding that the president’s attorneys will “continue to fight” against the “unconstitutional” measure. According to the campaign, the gag order “violates the First Amendment rights of President Trump and all American voters, who have a fundamental right to hear his message.” The First Amendment of the US Constitution prohibits the government from censoring speech and the press. Trump has called his prosecution politically motivated and a “witch hunt” by Biden and his administration.

The former president’s lawyers have pointed out that President Joe Biden is making Trump’s conviction a centerpiece of his 2024 campaign and will most likely bring it up at the first presidential debate, scheduled for later this month – while his Republican rival won’t be able to respond. Trump is the presumptive Republican nominee for the 2024 presidential ticket, which will be formally announced at the national convention in Milwaukee, Wisconsin next month. However, Merchan has scheduled the sentencing hearing for July 11, just days before the convention is scheduled to start.

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Anything we don’t like is now deepfake.

Confused Biden Clips Are ‘Deepfakes’ – White House (RT)

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre has claimed that recent videos showing US President Joe Biden looking confused at public events have been manipulated, describing them as “cheap fakes.” Jean-Pierre’s comments come after several videos of Biden have gone viral on social media in recent weeks. In one clip, the president could be seen having trouble sitting down during a D-Day memorial event in France. A number of commenters suggested that the US leader was “completely lost” or having “some kind of episode.” Another video showed Biden standing together with G7 leaders in Italy watching a skydiving demonstration. At one point, the US president turned away and wandered off from the group, before Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni took him by the hand to guide him back to the other members.

In another clip from an LA fundraising event with former President Barack Obama and late-night host Jimmy Kimmel, Biden appeared to freeze up as he was waving goodbye to the crowd. Obama could then be seen taking Biden by the hand and patting him on the back while leading him off stage. A clip from a White House Juneteenth concert also appeared to show the 81-year-old president awkwardly frozen as everyone around him danced to the music.
Speaking to reporters during a White House Press event on Monday, Jean-Pierre stated that “we are seeing these deepfakes, these manipulated videos, and it is again, done in bad faith.” The press secretary claimed that reports on these incidents are “attacks” on Biden that demonstrate the “desperation” of Republicans who refuse to acknowledge the president’s achievements.

Asked to comment specifically on the incidents with Meloni and Obama, who appeared to give Biden “stage directions,” Jean-Pierre insisted that these were “cheap fakes” and that “this did not happen, in the sense of what people were saying they were seeing or what was being falsely reported.” She also dismissed claims that Biden had frozen during the Juneteenth concert, suggesting the president simply didn’t want to dance. “Excuse me, I did not know that not dancing was a mental health issue. That is a weird thing to flag,” Jean-Pierre said. According to multiple recent polls, Biden’s mental health has been a longstanding concern among American voters, many of whom believe he is mentally and physically unfit for office. A recent Wall Street Journal report also claimed that aside from his frequent public mental gaffes, Biden has shown “signs of slipping” in closed-door meetings with US lawmakers.

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Only good NATO boss is someone who doesn’t want the job.

Mark Rutte: The Choice for NATO Secretary General? (Sp.)

As NATO stands on the brink of appointing a new Secretary General, the spotlight falls on Dutch PM Mark Rutte. Recent developments suggest that Rutte, who has served as the Netherlands’ PM since 2010, is now the frontrunner to succeed Jens Stoltenberg, following the removal of Hungary’s veto and the anticipated withdrawal of Romania’s opposition. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, speaking at a joint press conference with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, praised Rutte as a “strong candidate” and hinted at an imminent decision on his successor. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s endorsement, conditioned on Rutte’s commitment to Hungary’s non-involvement in NATO operations in Ukraine, has been pivotal in removing the last significant obstacle to his appointment.

Rutte’s potential ascension to NATO’s top post has elicited varied reactions, with some expressing cautious optimism while others remain deeply skeptical. Mikael Valtersson, a former officer of Swedish Armed Forces/Air Defence, former defence politician and chief of staff with Sweden Democrats, provides a perspective on Rutte’s suitability for the role. Valtersson argues that Rutte’s tenure as Prime Minister has been marked by a rigid stance on military support to Ukraine, trait that does not bode well for a role that requires diplomatic finesse and a balanced approach to global security challenges. Rutte’s critics contend that his leadership could exacerbate existing tensions rather than foster dialogue and de-escalation. Rutte’s track record reflects a staunchly pro-Ukrainian and anti-Russian stance. Under his leadership, the Netherlands has committed substantial financial aid to Ukraine, including €3 billion annually for 2024 and 2025. The Netherlands has also been at the forefront of supplying Ukraine with military hardware, notably the F-16 fighter jets, reinforcing Rutte’s hawkish posture.

In March 2024, Rutte signed a significant security treaty with Ukraine, a move that underscores his commitment to Ukraine’s defense but also raises questions about the appropriateness of such actions by a caretaker government. This treaty, signed despite the electoral victory of right-wing Geert Wilders in the Netherlands, highlights Rutte’s prioritization of support for Ukraine over the potential policy shifts anticipated from the new government. Critics argue that Rutte’s actions indicate a preference for military solutions over diplomatic engagement. His strong backing for Ukraine and consistent alignment with NATO’s hardline stance against Russia suggest that his leadership would likely continue Stoltenberg’s pro-Ukraine policies without exploring avenues for peace or compromise.

Valtersson and other critics suggest that Rutte’s appointment represents a missed opportunity for NATO to choose a leader who could steer the alliance towards a more nuanced and peaceful approach to the Ukraine conflict and broader global tensions. “All this shows that Mark Rutte will not be someone who will try to de-escalate the conflict in Ukraine… It’s a pity that NATO didn’t take the opportunity to choose a more peaceful new General secretary,” stated Valtersson. The concern is that Rutte’s leadership will perpetuate a cycle of military escalation rather than fostering diplomatic resolutions. As NATO prepares to finalize its decision, it must take into consideration, that, while Rutte’s candidacy has garnered support from key NATO members, his track record and recent commitments raise legitimate concerns about his capacity to lead the alliance towards a more balanced and peaceful global strategy.

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“..never underestimate the power of a genocide committed in broad daylight, on video..”

The BRICS Weigh In On Palestine (Pepe Escobar)

Something of extraordinary magnitude happened in Moscow on 23 May. Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa personally asked Russian President Vladimir Putin to help organize a peace conference on Palestine, at which Russia would be the first non-Arab nation invited. Al-Khalifa and Putin had two rounds of discussions – one of them closed – during which the main focus was always Palestine. The Bahraini monarch noted that in a rare show of unity, the Arab world had finally come together in agreement to end the war in Gaza. It was implied that Russia was subsequently chosen as the most reliable mediator to end the brutal conflict. Bahrain – and the Arab League – recognize that the Russian position centers around what Putin had previously defined as the “UN formula”: an independent Palestinian state with its capital in East Jerusalem. That happens to be the position of the BRICS-10 nations and virtually the whole Global Majority.

Crucially, it is also the common position of China and the Arab world, reaffirmed in Beijing only one week after the Russia-Bahrain meeting. The problem is how to implement the “formula” when the US hegemon, Israel’s unconditional ally, has a virtual stranglehold on the United Nations. By 2020, as Tel Aviv was openly announcing the inevitable annexation of the West Bank, the Abraham Accords were smashing a major Arab taboo on openly supporting Israel, via the normalization agreements signed in Washington DC by Bahrain, the UAE, Morocco, and Sudan. Nine months ago, Palestine was virtually isolated, and destined to extinction via quiet Israeli policies to incrementally force expulsion. But never underestimate the power of a genocide committed in broad daylight, on video. Today, the Russia-China strategic partnership, BRICS, and the Global Majority have been mobilized to enshrine Palestine as a sovereign state – faithful to the recent super-majority UN General Assembly vote to accept Palestine as a UN member.

It will be a long, winding, and thorny road that has the potential to split the world in two. The St. Petersburg forum last week offered three crucial messages to the Global Majority, focused around BRICS. The crux of the sessions may have been geoeconomics, but a now-unavoidable message of support to Palestine crept into the sidelines. After a panel ostensibly debating the supply and demand of oil and gas, and which touched upon the principled role of Yemen in the Red Sea directed against the Gaza genocide, support for Palestine, amidst friendly smiles (but off the record), was emphatic from everyone – from OPEC secretary-general Haitham al-Ghais to the UAE’s Minister of Energy Suhail Mohamed al-Mazrouei. Same on a Russia-Oman panel, coming from Minister of Commerce Qais bin Mohammed bin Moosa al-Yousef.

Earlier this week, the Palestine tragedy was addressed in detail – on points 34 and 35 – in the joint statement of the BRICS 10 Ministers of Foreign Affairs, who sat at the same table for the first time in Nizhny Novgorod, preparing for the extremely important annual BRICS summit next October in Kazan, under the Russian presidency. Three very important points were made there: First, the Ministers “reaffirmed their rejection of any attempt aiming at forcefully displacing, expelling or transferring the Palestinian people from their land.” Second, they collectively “expressed serious concern at Israel’s continued blatant disregard of international law, the UN Charter, UN resolutions and Court orders.” And third, the ten foreign ministers:

“Reaffirmed their support for Palestine’s full membership in the United Nations and reiterated their unwavering commitment to the vision of the two-state solution based on international law including relevant UNSC and UNGA resolutions and the Arab Peace Initiative that includes the establishment of a sovereign, independent and viable State of Palestine in line with internationally recognized borders of June 1967 with East Jerusalem as its capital living side by side in peace and security with Israel.” This is BRICS speaking with one voice – including, crucially, representatives of major Muslim-majority states: Iran, Saudi Arabia, the UAE. and Egypt.

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“If the stablecoin fund was a country, it would be in “the top ten of countries holding Treasuries..”

US Cryptocurrency as an Offshore Banking Center (Michael Hudson)

The Wall Street Journal ran a revealing op-ed today (June 14, 2024) by Paul D. Ryan, “Crypto Could Stave off a U.S. Debt Crisis.” Mr. Ryan, libertarian Republican House Speaker 2015-2019 and now at the right-wing American Enterprise Institute, writes that: “Stablecoins backed by dollars provide demand for U.S. public debt and a way to keep up with China.” He reports that “According to the Treasury Department and DeFi Llama, a cryptocurrency analytics site, dollar-based stablecoins are becoming an important net purchaser of U.S. government debt.” If the stablecoin fund was a country, it would be in “the top ten of countries holding Treasuries – smaller than Hong Kong but larger than Saudi Arabia.” So the result of officially promoting them “would be an immediate, durable increase in demand for U.S. debt.”Ryan says that “bipartisan support in Congress … would help dramatically expand the use of digital dollars at a given critical time.”

Here’s the real logic. I’ve written before about how c. 1966 or ’67, I was Chase Manhattan’s balance-of-payments economist, and a bank officer, apparently having joined from the State Dept., asked me to review a memo proposing to make the United States “the new Switzerland,” that is, a haven for the world’s drug money and other criminal money laundering, for kleptocrats and tax evaders in order to help stem the U.S. balance-of-payments deficit that resulted entirely from foreign military spending in Southeast Asia and elsewhere around the world. Today, as foreign countries de-dollarize their trade – for instance, when Russia and China trade for oil and industrial products in each others’ currencies – U.S. financial strategists worry about what this will mean for the dollar’s exchange rate. Actually, transacting such foreign trade in non-dollar currencies has no effect on the U.S. balance of payments. It does not appear in the trade balance or even in foreign investment, although de-dollarization may deprive U.S. banks of currency-trading commissions to handle such transactions

What does affect the demand for dollars is conversion of assets denominated in foreign currency into the dollar. This king of confidential banking is what pressed up the Swiss franc so much in the 1970s and ‘80s that it priced Swiss manufactures out of foreign markets. Companies like Ciba-Geigy had to move their production across the border to Germany to prevent the rising franc’s valuation from making them uncompetitive. (When that company brought me over in 1976, I found that the price of a coke was over $10, and a regular meal cost $100.) The U.S. is seeking to protect the dollar’s high value, not lower it, so it sees acting as the destination for world’s tax avoiders, criminals and others as a positive national strategy. (“Kleptocracy is us.”) The plan is not to condemn tax crime and more violent criminal activities, but seeking to profit for being the banker for these functions. The logic is, “As the world’s leading free-market democracy, we’re providing a secure for the world’s capital, however it may be ‘earned’ or otherwise obtained.”

I should have added the real kicker. Stablecoins don’t pay interest. So buyers will get the equivalent of a US Treasury security — but NOT the interest (now in the high 4% range). The Stablecoin company will get that. This is a HUGE bonanza for them — and a correspondingly huge foregone income by Stablecoin holders. Why don’t they simply buy US Treasury bills, notes or bonds themselves? The answer must be ideology (imagining Stablecoins to be anti-government when the money is lent to governments), ignorance, and SECRECY. They pay a huge opportunity cost for hiding their identity and the source of their money.

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Reflex

 

 

Panda
https://twitter.com/i/status/1803038703184728401

 

 

Dachs

 

 

 

 

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Jun 022024
 


John French Sloan East Entrance, City Hall, Philadelphia 1901

 

Tyranny Is Upon Us: Law And Juries Are Weaponized (Paul Craig Roberts)
The Trump Trial Harkens Back to a Dark Period of American Law (Turley)
The Democrats Just Sealed Donald Trump’s Victory In November (Bridge)
DOJ: You Can’t Hear The Biden-Hur ‘Memory Interview’ Because of Deepfakes (Sp.)
Desperate, Lying Biden May Abuse AI to Pull the Ultimate Race Hoax (Sellers)
Artificial ‘N****R’ (Sellers)
RFK Jr. Slams Biden’s Decision to Allow Ukrainian Strikes Inside Russia (Sp.)
Ukraine Conflict Is Reshaping War For the 21st Century (DeMartino)
The Popski Syndrome – Allied Defeat Turns Into Battlefield Fantasies (Helmer)
Presidents Who Gamble With Nuclear Armageddon (Jeffrey Sachs)
Russia’s Victory Over Ukraine Is Drawing Near (Scott Ritter)
Ukraine Won’t Exist In 50 Years – Tucker Carlson (RT)
Dave Smith Burns Chris Cuomo To The Ground In Epic Covid Debate (ZH)
Mark Rutte, The Dutch Invader, Is Sinking In The Hungarian Goulash (Helmer)
Huge Anti-War Rally In Budapest, Hungary (RT)

 

 

 

 

RFK Elon

 

 

Flynn/Macgregor

 

 

 

 

Eric Trump

 

 

JD Vance
https://twitter.com/i/status/1796593469546287378

 

 

 

 

Eva

 

 

 

 

 

 

“..a single accounting reporting charge, a misdemeanor, was magically turned into 34 federal felonies of election violations..”

“..legally this is a case for which there are no legal grounds for bringing it..”

Tyranny Is Upon Us: Law And Juries Are Weaponized (Paul Craig Roberts)

Jury Finds Trump Guilty on All 34 Felony Charges in New York Trial. Keep in mind that these are 34 made-up felonies based on how an expense was recorded by accountants and attorneys. Trump did not record the expense.The expense was recorded according to accounting standards. Keep in mind that a single accounting reporting charge, a misdemeanor, was magically turned into 34 federal felonies of election violations, if memory serves, the argument being that Trump won the election by misreporting the expense. There are so many civil and criminal show trials going on against Trump that it is hard to keep track of all the absurdities. Keep in mind that it is a case without complainants, without harmed parties. It is a case brought by a prosecutor who can show no party harmed. What is frightening is that legally this is a case for which there are no legal grounds for bringing it. Yet, the bar associations, the law schools, the media said nothing.

Getting Trump was so important that law was sacrificed for the purpose. Trump’s demonization made a fair trial impossible, and few jurors can resist using their power against a rich person. The weaponization of law in order to interfere with an election –in other words the prosecutor is guilty of interfering in an election–the charge brought against Trump– means the future of America is tyranny. An appeal will be made, but a state where justice is as corrupt as New York is incapable of producing a decision based on law. If there is any fight left in Americans, and I am unsure, a prison sentence from the totally corrupt judge should launch a civil war. Many would say it is about time or past time. If not, the people have submitted to tyranny. The North submitted to Lincoln’s tyranny. The South did not. Little is left of the South. It is unclear what stands against the tyranny of Washington.

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The constitutional law professor: “Even after sitting in the courtroom watching the trial and the verdict, I still have no idea what Trump was convicted of in the case..”

The Trump Trial Harkens Back to a Dark Period of American Law (Turley)

After years of trying — in the words of the judge — “to get the damned rascal in this court,” it was a conviction that many welcomed. But those words were not from Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan, and the conviction was not that of former President Donald Trump. Rather they were from US Supreme Court Justice Samuel Chase, at the end of the 18th century, when America embraced political prosecutions to target critics and opponents. The man on trial then was James T. Callender, a muckraking writer critical of President John Adams. For accusing politicians of corruption, Callender was charged with sedition, fined $200 and put in prison. It was one of the many political prosecutions carried out by the Adams administration. Political prosecutions are something most citizens associate with dictatorships. But the Trump prosecution has forced many to confront the undeniable reality of the politicization of our legal system. In many respects, President Biden and Democrats have re-created the Adams era.

Biden has led calls for censorship of political critics and his administration has coordinated the silencing and the blacklisting of those with opposing views. Democratic politicians have pressured social-media companies to serve as surrogates for the government in banning, throttling and defunding individuals and groups. Indeed, I have previously written that Biden is now the most anti-free-speech president since Adams. The Adams era also reflected the same blind loyalty of many media outlets. Federalist publications supported the crackdowns while echoing charges against political opponents as seditionists and insurrectionists. Jeffersonian publications, like Callender’s, attacked Adams for his “unbounded thirst for ridiculous pomp, foolish adulation, and selfish avarice.” The nation was divided down the middle as both sides accused each other of being traitors and insurrectionists. Sound familiar? Yet, it is the politicization of the legal system that is the most chilling return to the Adams era.

Even liberal legal analysts and figures have admitted that the case against Trump was unprecedented and would not have been brought against anyone other than Trump. CNN legal analyst Elie Honig recently wrote that there should be concern over a judge being appointed (not randomly selected) who is not just a Biden donor but someone who “has earmarked donations for ‘resisting the Republican Party and Donald Trump’s radical right-wing legacy.’” Adding to these concerns is the movement of the third-highest official in the Biden Justice Department to the staff of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg to build the case against Trump. Before joining the case, Matthew Colangelo was also paid by the Democratic National Committee for “political consulting.” So Trump was convicted in a trial with a Biden donor judge, who has a daughter who is a major Democratic operative, a lead prosecutor previously paid as a DNC political consultant and a jury selected in a district that voted roughly 90% against Trump.

The trial itself was a travesty. Even after sitting in the courtroom watching the trial and the verdict, I still have no idea what Trump was convicted of in the case. The charges were built on a dead misdemeanor barred with the passage of the statute of limitations. It was zapped back into life by alleging that the falsification of business records occurred to unlawfully influence the 2016 presidential election. Merchan told the jury members that they did not have to agree on what those unlawful means may have been. Specifically, he allowed them to base their verdict on any one of three vaguely defined crimes of a federal election violation, falsification of business records or taxation violations.

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“The only thing better than that would be to witness the first president in US history to pardon himself as the Trump legacy goes full circle.”

The Democrats Just Sealed Donald Trump’s Victory In November (Bridge)

Members of the Democratic Party continue to fail to understand that the more mud they fling at the former president, the dirtier they look by comparison. On Thursday, a unanimous decision from a 12-person jury declared Donald Trump guilty on 34 felony counts, which could see the former president sentenced to 136 years in prison. There’s just one catch: the notorious Orange Man will never spend a single night behind bars. The worst that will happen for the Republican presidential frontrunner is that he will enter the race with a criminal record. Because the crimes are nonviolent and Trump has no prior convictions, any chance of prison time is a long shot. What could happen instead is that Judge Juan Merchan could sentence him to house arrest – which would undoubtedly make ankle bracelets, much like the famous Trump ‘mug shot,’ the latest fashion accessory – probation or some other lighter form of supervised release.

Another option that would backfire in the Democratic Party’s face is the imposition of community service. While Democrats may relish the idea of Trump being forced to join a prison work gang as punishment, it’s too easy to imagine millions of Trump supporters turning out at some soup kitchen or animal shelter to throw their support behind the most controversial figure in American politics today. And then there is the question of New York, the site of the Trump case, which is only second to the state of California when it comes to liberal residents. Trump inveighed against District Attorney Alvin Bragg, calling him the “Soros-backed DA.” As The New York Times wrote of the Bragg-Soros connection, “Soros donated to a liberal group that endorses progressive prosecutors and supports efforts to overhaul the criminal justice system – in line with causes that he has publicly supported for years. That group used a significant portion of the money to support Mr. Bragg in his 2021 campaign.”

On November 21, 2022, The Times reported that the district attorney’s office “has moved to jump-start its criminal investigation” into Trump’s reported “hush-money payment to a porn star who said she had an affair with Mr. Trump.” This was the first indictment of a former president in US history. Trump pleaded not guilty, yet was found guilty of all counts on May 30, 2024, making Bragg the first prosecutor in US history to win a conviction against a former president. Trump, who will be sentenced on July 11th, denies ever having had sex with Daniels. Another aspect of the Trump case that has rallied many to Trump’s defense is the political identity of the judge presiding over the case, Juan Merchan, whom Trump has criticized as “conflicted.” That may be an understatement when it is considered that Merchan donates to an organization called ‘Stop Republicans,’ as well as the Biden campaign.

Finally, Trump posted on his Truth Social platform that Loren Merchan, the judge’s daughter, is president of Authentic Campaigns, a Chicago-based progressive political consulting firm whose top clients include Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), who was the lead prosecutor in Trump’s first impeachment trial. Merchan’s daughter helped raise at least $93 million in campaign donations – and used the Trump case in her solicitation emails – highlighting a major conflict of interest that have Trump supporters demanding Judge Merchan recuse himself from the case. Finally, there is the question of fairness when it is considered that New York is major Democrat country. Can Trump seriously hope for a fair trial to take place in this prominent Blue state? He certainly doesn’t think so.

Merchan imposed the 10th contempt of court fine of $1,000 for an April 22 interview in which the former president said: “That jury was picked so fast – 95% Democrats. The area’s mostly all Democrat.” While the Democrats may be rubbing their hands in glee after finally getting Trump entangled in the judicial net, they continue to ignore the fact that every scandal has only served to empower the 45th president. In the worst-case scenario, should Trump be sent to prison, this will not stop the flow of campaign cash from entering the GOP’s coffers; in fact, it is practically guaranteed that the spectacle of the Orange Man behind bars – complete with mug shot in prison garb – will be the best campaign promo of all time. The only thing better than that would be to witness the first president in US history to pardon himself as the Trump legacy goes full circle.

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Anything can be deepfake, and now you can’t hear any of it anymore. Unless it’s about Trump.

DOJ: You Can’t Hear The Biden-Hur ‘Memory Interview’ Because of Deepfakes (Sp.)

The US Department of Justice (DOJ) is attempting to prevent the release of the audio of the infamous “memory interview” between US President Joe Biden and special counsel Robert Hur, arguing that “deepfakes” may appear as a result. Hur was investigating Biden’s handling of classified documents he obtained as a senator and vice president. While Hur wrote in his report that Biden likely violated the law intentionally, he declined to press charges because he thought Biden would appear to the jury as a “sympathetic, well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory.” It also noted that Biden had trouble remembering when he was vice president and which year his son Beau died. The DOJ issued a filing on Friday that argued “The passage of time and advancements in audio, artificial intelligence, and ‘deep fake’ technologies only amplify concerns about malicious manipulation of audio files. If the audio recording is released here, it is easy to foresee that it could be improperly altered, and that the altered file could be passed off as an authentic recording and widely distributed.”

While the DOJ admits that there is plenty of “other raw material to create a deepfake of President Biden’s voice” available to unscrupulous actors, it argues that if the public became aware that the legitimate recording was released, they would be more apt to believe a fake recording is legitimate. The filing was first obtained by Politico. It is not known how the court will respond to the strange reasoning. If a legitimate copy of the recording were released, it stands to reason it would become easier –not more difficult– to disprove fake versions. As the DOJ admits in its filing as part of its argument that the release of the audio recording is unnecessary, the full transcript of the interview has already been released. It would be trivial for someone with AI experience to use the “raw material” already available of Biden to create a deepfake version of the interview and say it was leaked. A legitimate version being released would make that much easier for other internet users and the media to definitively debunk.

The filing also comes after Biden used his executive privilege to stop the release of the tape to House Republicans who had sought to obtain it as part of their investigation into the Biden family. The latest filing was in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. The DOJ also argues that the release of the audio would be a violation of Biden’s privacy. However, since we already know what he said thanks to the transcript– and we have no reason to believe that the transcript is incorrect, the only thing that would be revealed is everything between those words. How long did Biden pause before answering? How many times did he stumble on his words? Did he sound confused or angry during the interview? These are the questions that could be revealed through the release of the audio and according to the filing, the DOJ doesn’t think it is in the “public interest” to reveal the answers, so much so that they are willing to resort to absurd fear-mongering over a new technology in hopes that the judge will be cowed into blocking its release.

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I split Ben Sellers’ piece in two. First, reality.

Desperate, Lying Biden May Abuse AI to Pull the Ultimate Race Hoax (Sellers)

It is patently clear that 99% of what comes out of Biden’s mouth, and those of his surrogates is an abject, gaslighting falsehood. Many in the voting public have now woken up to this fact, which is why we’ve seen so many red-pilled ex-Biden backers suddenly flipping their support to Trump in protest of all—or even some—of the above. Taking a page from Adolf Hitler, Democrats already primed people for the so-called Big Lie, deflecting from the fact that they were in the process of committing it by, appropriately enough, projecting it preemptively onto Republicans Regrettably, we may now be on the cusp of what history will record as the “Biggest Lie,” if and when the truth ever comes to light—something so shamefully bald-faced, so transparently manipulative, that most will think, “They wouldn’t dare lie about that.” But indeed, Biden has proven nothing if not that he will lie about anything.

We are witnessing the remarkable confluence of several disparate factors that are leading us on the path to the biggest race hoax in recorded history—and yet, it seems obvious, like a black swan event, that something so dastardly would be the inevitable outcome of putting the declining Democrat ethos and the rise in artificial intelligence-generated disinformation together in a tinderbox that includes the bombastic Donald Trump.On Thursday, a former producer from Trump’s ABC television show The Apprentice drudged up a long simmering rumor regarding tapes of Trump having used the n-word to refer to contestant Kwame Jackson. Trump spokesperson Steven Cheung called it a “a completely fabricated and bullsh*t story,” Politico reported. Many critics have pointed out that President Joe Biden’s own troubled history when it comes to making controversial remarks about race often undermines his current posturing about being a champion of minority causes.

Nonetheless, Biden’s campaign—after recently botching the rollout on an eight-figure effort to win back black voters—made hay of the Trump smear, releasing an official statement to torque up the race-baiting allegation. “No one is surprised that Donald Trump, who entered public life by falsely accusing [b]lack men of murder and entered political life spreading lies about the first [b]lack president, reportedly used the N-word to casually denigrate a successful [b]lack man,” claimed Jasmine Harris, the Biden campaign’s director of black media. The campaign also appeared to have been coordinating with Pruitt on the story, which he released in a Slate op-ed, as it had canned footage ready to roll out of former Trump staffer turned critic Omarosa Manigault Newman leveling unsubstantiated ‘racism’ claims against her ex-boss.

https://twitter.com/i/status/1796222579759358116

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Second, AI.

“..a new low-water mark for America, as it faces a bombardment of structure tests from the radical Marxist subversives hoping to topple it for once and for all.”

Artificial ‘N****R’ (Sellers)

Lost in the Trump Manhattan trial about his alleged falsification of business documents to pay off porn star Stormy Daniels was the fact that the $130,000 paid to Daniels by Michael Cohen did not fulfill its contracted purpose. Prior to the November 2016 election, the Wall Street Journal published a story that named Daniels and Playboy bunny Karen McDougal, alleging the two had received hush-money payments to keep quiet about their decade-old affairs with Trump. Within two years, some of the key players in the purported scandal were speaking openly about it. Suffice it to say, if Pruitt had the evidence at the time to support his allegation about Trump using the n-word on The Apprentice, those tapes would have found their way into the hands of interested parties somewhere along the way long before Trump’s third presidential run.

It is reasonable to infer that the absence of the tapes up to this point suggests they don’t exist. Frighteningly, what does now exist is a rapid surge in artificial intelligence technology that could allow the Biden campaign to produce fake tapes of Trump using the pejorative, sowing just enough suspicion among his nascent black supporters that they would flock back to the fold on the Democrat plantation. Already, we have seen the technology put to frightening use to imitate Biden’s voice in a fake robocall that went out to New Hampshire voters, telling them to stay home since he wasn’t on the ballot, despite an expensive write-in campaign to deliver him a victory in the Granite State. The deep-fake was traced back to the owner of a telecom company in Texas, who had previously donated money to Sen. John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign.

The technology also has been misused to create pornography of high school students and to scam a company out of $25 million with a phony conference call. And oh yea, the CIA has admitted it is taking full advantage of it for undisclosed purposes. Most perniciously, it has already been used for at least one race hoax. A disgruntled high school athletic director in Baltimore was caught using deep-fake software to mimic the voice of his principal going on a racist and anti-Semitic rant in retaliation for a probe of his misappropriation of school funds. The rant appeared on Instagram and quickly began to circulate. Although AI was suspected almost immediately, Pikesville High School Eric Eiswert was subjected to negative publicity and an intensive forensic investigation that drew in the FBI and experts from the University of California, Berkeley, before he was ultimately vindicated.

The potential for AI abuse, paired with the Biden administration’s penchant and proclivity for it, would certainly lead one to wonder, should a tape of Trump using the “n-word” suddenly surface, whether its authenticity could be trusted. Would Biden, or another bad actor working on his behalf, be willing to stoop so low as to falsely smear someone with an entirely made-up tape in order to deceive and manipulate a particular class of voters into making a misinformed decision? Sadly, if past is prologue, one need no longer ask questions about the depths to which they will stoop. Will it work? If so, it would simultaneously be a breakthrough achievement in AI technology—the successful passage, perhaps, of a sort of Turing test on the road to singularity—and a new low-water mark for America, as it faces a bombardment of structure tests from the radical Marxist subversives hoping to topple it for once and for all.

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“..authorizing Ukraine to strike targets deep in Russia. Using our weapons, trained in their use by our trainers..”

RFK Jr. Slams Biden’s Decision to Allow Ukrainian Strikes Inside Russia (Sp.)

US presidential candidate Robert Kennedy Jr. condemned President Joe Biden’s decision to greenlight Ukrainian strikes using US-supplied weapons inside Russian territory. “More insane escalation by the Biden administration — authorizing Ukraine to strike targets deep in Russia. Using our weapons, trained in their use by our trainers,” Kennedy said on X. In a major policy shift, Biden authorized the use of US weapons against military installations in Russia. A State Department spokesperson insisted that the authorization was limited to what they called “counter-fire purposes” in Kharkov (also known as Kharkiv) region. The US has not authorized the use of long-range missiles, including ATACMS, inside Russia, the spokesperson told Sputnik.

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Drones. And the “turtle tank.”

Ukraine Conflict Is Reshaping War For the 21st Century (DeMartino)

The weapons that shaped warfare in the 20th century: barbed wire, machine guns, tanks, long-range artillery, and battleships, still play significant roles on the battlefield in the 21st, but they are dwarfed in importance by one invention, from which multiple theaters have been affected: the drone. While specific numbers of their effectiveness are difficult to come by at this stage of the conflict (that will be a job for war historians) there is no doubt that it is the most significant innovation on the battlefield today, used by both sides to inflict large amounts of casualties on the other. During Ukraine’s failed 2023 counteroffensive, drones played a huge role in stopping that advance. With the possible exception of Russia’s distance mining equipment, which also took out large numbers of tanks, drones were pivotal in taking out NATO’s most powerful armor.

“[US media] admitted how useless the Abrams [tank] is when tens of millions of dollars per tank can be taken out by a $500 drone. It is a new model of warfare,” Mark Sleboda, a security and international relations expert told Sputnik’s Fault Lines on Friday. “But it is an evolution of warfare that is occurring before our eyes. So, the Chinese and Americans are certainly paying very close attention,” he noted earlier in the interview. It is an opinion shared by former Marine and UN Weapons Inspector Scott Ritter. Speaking on the Danny Haiphong show, he explained how everything from tactics to logistics has been changed by drones. “When this war started, people were working off of Cold War-era doctrinal thinking. That is: you have tank columns, you have artillery that operates in battery or battalion sized formations flooding a zone, you have big arrow movements and things of that nature,” Ritter recalled. “[Then] drones started coming in, not just for targeting purposes, not just for deep strike purposes, but tactical drones on the battlefront. These FPV drones are a nightmare for soldiers.”

“If I tried to take Marines into combat using the tactics that I was taught,” Ritter continued “[With] two platoons online, basic fire etcetera, my base of fire would disappear because it’d be swarmed by FPV drones… then my Marines attacking would be hit by these drones and they’re all dead.” Much like Haig, this was a lesson that the Armed Forces of Ukraine failed to learn during their counteroffensive. Rabotino was intended to be the first minor step during that offensive that would lead to Tokmak which would serve as the staging ground for an assault on Melitopol. But as armor assault after armor assault was destroyed, it became apparent that the Ukrainians would never reach their goal. But, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky needed something to show his Western benefactors, so Rabotino became the goal. It took 71 days to capture the tiny village with a pre-war population of about 500 people, largely using the same tactics they began with. Ukraine lost dozens of expensive tanks and thousands of men capturing and then holding the village.

The Ukrainian offensive never went any further and in May, Russia recaptured the village. Just as the invention of the tank helped break the stalemate of the First World War, new technologies are emerging to counteract the drone and there it seems Russia has a decided advantage on that front. According to Military Watch Magazine, Russian electronic defenses have rendered Ukraine’s best artillery weapons all but useless, including the Excalibur GPS-guided artillery shells, the vaunted HIMARS rocket artillery systems and the JDAM precision-guided bombs. “Everything ended [in 2023]: the Russian deployed electronic warfare, disabled satellite signals, and HIMARS became completely ineffective,” one senior Ukrainian military official was quoted as saying. But the innovations on the battlefield aren’t exclusive to high technology, often they come from the soldiers on the ground. As tanks were increasingly taken out by drones, soldiers started adding cope cages in an attempt to protect them. This eventually led to the deployment of what is affectionately called the “turtle tank.”

Typically beginning with a T-72 tank, so-called turtle tanks are outfitted with a metal shell that covers almost the entirety of the tank, leaving only the very front and its cannon exposed to drone attack. While limiting the driver in visibility and maneuverability, those drawbacks have proven worth it. The Ukrainians who initially laughed at the turtle tank’s awkward appearance and low-tech solution quickly stopped laughing as they retreated from turtle tank assaults across the Western front.

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“..the Russian response will not be nuclear. That is impossible. There are a thousand options between doing nothing and going nuclear, and we can be sure the General Staff are working on all of them..”

The Popski Syndrome – Allied Defeat Turns Into Battlefield Fantasies (Helmer)

In war, exaggeration is a killer. In the media, exaggeration is a bestseller. In the current war there is a dearth of military and political analysts who for truth or money will tell the difference. Instead, when the mentality of the war fighters is a combination of racial superiority and spetsnaz derring-do, what you get is the conviction that with one more brilliant operation and one more super-weapon, victory can be snatched from every indicator of defeat because the adversary will be persuaded to accept negotiations as he loses his nerve. This is the meaning of the Anglo-American publicity which burst over the long Bank Holiday and Memorial Day weekend, as summer campaigning began in earnest for the July and November elections in the UK and US — with the incumbent in the former running 21 points behind, and the incumbent in the latter trailing on an approval margin of minus-16 points.

The Reuters propaganda agency, based in New York, is claiming to have found four Russians from “a senior level in the political and business worlds” to be talkative about what they say they know of the Kremlin’s end-of-war plans. “[President Vladimir] Putin can fight for as long as it takes, but Putin is also ready for a ceasefire – to freeze the war… Putin would, however, be ready to settle for what land he has now and freeze the conflict at the current front lines, four of the sources said. ‘Putin will say that we won, that NATO attacked us and we kept our sovereignty, that we have a land corridor to Crimea, which is true,’ one of them said, giving their own analysis.” With just one more successful push from the Ukrainian side, Reuters and its four Russians believe, Putin will agree to give up his war. This push, which the western media have been amplifying this week, is the drone attacks on Russian radar stations for early warning of nuclear missile attack at Armavir, Krasnodar, and Orsk, Orenburg.

Although Russian military sources claim these attacks were pinpricks, and the second of them was shot out of the sky before detonation, western media are reporting that it is now the battle strategy of the US, the British, and the Ukrainians to provoke Putin into retaliation, crossing the red line of tactical nuclear warfare. That’s a red line, the allies are calculating, which Putin would rather negotiate end-of-war terms than cross. A retired Moscow military analyst warns against the exaggeration, not of the attacks themselves, but of Putin’s power to decide end-of-war terms over the opposition of the General Staff and the new Defense Ministry. “It is obvious the Ukrainians have had a string of successful breakthroughs,” the source acknowledges, “– against ships, airfields, refineries, and now this radar site. We also understand it is not the Ukrainians: all target selection, identification, guidance, and the hardware are American or European. Where the command control of these launch sites is, we do not know but it might well not be in Ukraine.”

“But the Russian response will not be nuclear. That is impossible. There are a thousand options between doing nothing and going nuclear, and we can be sure the General Staff are working on all of them. So when people say this is provocation for a nuclear strike and that [Ukrainian President Vladimir] Zelensky is provoking it, we understand that, first, NATO planners know Putin will not go nuclear because he and his generals are too rational and sane. And second, Zelensky is not the one making the provocations. So the real red line now is not the nuclear arms provocations from the NATO side. That’s a fantasy of theirs. Just so, in response, I think it’s time Putin stops making threats and strikes at the source of these operations.” When desperate weakness triggers battlefield fantasies, call this the Popski Syndrome.

Popski was the call sign and unit nickname assigned by the British Army headquarters in Cairo to a tiny unit of behind-the-lines special forces operating against the Italian and German armies in the Libyan deserts from late in 1941 until September 1943, when the war moved on to Italy, taking Popski with it. Popski’s unit numbered 24 men to start in Libya; in Italy, by the war’s end, it had reached 80. Vladimir Peniakoff was Popski, born to wealthy Jewish Russians who fled the Revolution to install their aluminium business and themselves in Belgium, then the UK. With London publisher Jonathan Cape, Peniakoff imagined he could turn his small guerrilla war in the Libyan and Tunisian deserts into something approaching the bestsellerdom of the Seven Pillars of Wisdom, T.E.Lawrence’s story of the war of the Arabian peninsula tribes against the Turks between 1916 and 1918; first published in 1926.

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A timeline.

Presidents Who Gamble With Nuclear Armageddon (Jeffrey Sachs)

The Doomsday Clock was at 17 minutes to midnight when Clinton came to office, but just 9 minutes when he left it. Bush pushed the clock to just 5 minutes, Obama to 3 minutes, and Trump to a mere 100 seconds. Now Biden has taken the clock to 90 seconds. Most presidents, and most Americans, have little idea how close to the abyss we are. The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, which was founded in 1947 in part to help the world avoid nuclear annihilation, established the Doomsday Clock to help the public understand the gravity of the risks we face. National security experts adjust the clock depending how far or how close we are to “midnight,” meaning extinction. They put the clock today at just 90 seconds to midnight, the closest that it’s ever been in the nuclear age.

The clock is a useful measure of which presidents have “gotten it” and which have not. The sad fact is that most presidents have recklessly gambled with our survival in the name of national honor, or to prove their personal toughness, or to avoid political attacks from the warmongers, or as the result of sheer incompetence. By a simple and straightforward count, five presidents have gotten it right, moving the clock away from midnight, while nine have moved us closer to Armageddon, including the most recent five. Truman was president when the Doomsday Clock was unveiled in 1947, at 7 minutes to midnight. Truman stoked the nuclear arms race and left office with the clock at just 3 minutes to midnight. Eisenhower continued the nuclear arms race but also entered into the first-ever negotiations with the Soviet Union regarding nuclear disarmament. By the time he left office, the clock was put back to 7 minutes to midnight.

Kennedy saved the world by coolly reasoning his way through the Cuban Missile Crisis, rather than following the advice of hothead advisors who called for war (for a detailed account, see Martin Sherwin’s magisterial Gambling with Armageddon, 2020). He then negotiated the Partial Nuclear Test Ban Treaty with Khrushchev in 1963. By the time of his death, which may well have been a government coup resulting from Kennedy’s peace initiative, JFK had pushed the clock back to 12 minutes to midnight, a magnificent and historic achievement. It was not to last. Lyndon Johnson soon escalated in Vietnam and pushed the clock back again to just 7 minutes to midnight. Richard Nixon eased tensions with both the Soviet Union and China, and concluded the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT I), pushing the clock again to 12 minutes from midnight. Yet Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter failed to secure SALT II, and Carter fatefully and unwisely gave a green light to the CIA in 1979 to destabilize Afghanistan. By the time Ronald Reagan took office, the clock was at just 4 minutes to midnight.

The next 12 years marked the end of the Cold War. Much of the credit is due to Mikhail Gorbachev, who aimed to reform the Soviet Union politically and economically, and to end the confrontation with the West. Yet credit is also due to Reagan and his successor George Bush, Sr., who successfully worked with Gorbachev to end the Cold War, which in turn was followed by the end of the Soviet Union itself in December 1991. By the time Bush left office, the Doomsday clock was at 17 minutes to midnight, the safest since the start of the nuclear age.

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UKiev.

Russia’s Victory Over Ukraine Is Drawing Near (Scott Ritter)

By the time the counteroffensive ground to a halt, in December 2023, Ukraine was a spent force militarily. Its armed forces had used up their reserves of manpower. NATO had depleted its stocks of available military materiel. And the West had become politically exhausted at the prospect of a never-ending conflict which seemed destined to result in an endless cycle of throwing good money after bad, all the while failing to bring about the strategic goal of defeating Russia. Moscow, on the other hand, emerged from the 2023 Ukrainian counteroffensive in a good position. From a military perspective, the Russians had won the war of attrition with Ukraine and the collective West – basic military math had Ukraine consuming manpower and material resources at a far greater rate than they could be replenished, making Kiev grow physically weaker every day the conflict dragged on, while the Russians were able to accumulate manpower and material resources at a rate far greater than Ukraine was able to destroy, meaning Russia grew stronger every day te conflict continued.

Economically, Ukraine and its Western backers were exhausted. The blowback from the aggressive anti-Russian sanctions imposed by the West had severely curtailed the industrial capacity of the European members of the NATO alliance to sustain the scope and scale of its military support to Ukraine, while domestic political realities in the US, amplified by the fact that it was engaged in a hotly contested presidential election cycle, paralyzed the American ability to sustain Ukraine financially. The military and economic exhaustion of Ukraine and the collective West severely impacted the ability of this coalition to politically sustain support for a war that had no discernable prospect of ending well. While the conflict has not, by any stretch of the imagination, been without cost to Russia, the approach taken by the leadership, to create conditions on the battlefield designed to maximize enemy losses while minimizing their own, meant that Moscow entered 2024 in a much stronger position militarily, economically, and – perhaps most importantly – politically.

War, it has been said, is an extension of politics by other means, and this is no exception to the age-old adage. Russian President Vladimir Putin’s latest electoral victory has provided the leadership in Moscow with a political mandate that strengthens Russia’s hand considerably, especially contrasted with the weakened posture of Ukraine. It is within such a context that the Russian offensive north of Kharkov must be evaluated. From a military-political standpoint, the operation has a specific objective – to push Ukrainian forces back from the border with Russia so that Ukrainian artillery and rocket systems can no longer strike Russian territory. But there is a larger purpose for this offensive – to continue the process of grinding down the Ukrainian military, to complete the larger task of ”demilitarization” set by the Kremlin.

In this, Russia is succeeding. First and foremost, by attacking north of Kharkov, Moscow has compelled UKiev to commit not only the last of its mobile strategic reserves in response but, because these forces are inadequate in strength, to force Ukraine to strip away units on the eastern line of contact, in Kherson, Zaporozhye and Donbass, and to divert them to the Kharkov direction. The depletion of reserves is part and parcel of the overall Russian strategy of attrition. Moreover, as these forces displace to the Kharkov region, they are being interdicted by Russian air, missile, and drone strikes, further eroding their combat power. The result is that Ukraine is now defending a longer line of defense with even fewer forces than it started with.

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“They’re already selling off lands in Ukraine to foreign investors, and they will flood Ukraine with third-world immigrants and Ukraine will not exist in 50 years..”

Ukraine Won’t Exist In 50 Years – Tucker Carlson (RT)

The US has “betrayed” Ukraine and will destroy the country by selling off its land and “flooding” it with third-world immigrants, American journalist Tucker Carlson predicted in an interview with former President Donald Trump’s son, Donald Jr. In a video interview published on Friday, Carlson and Trump Jr. both agreed that US President Joe Biden had brought the world to the brink of World War III, and that the US is essentially “at war with Russia.” “No-one’s articulated what victory in Ukraine looks like,” Trump Jr. said. “I don’t know what it means. Is it just like perpetual death of Ukrainians and Russians until they’re all wiped out and Blackrock comes in there and takes over all the farmland? That’s what it feels like to me.” Blackrock is the world’s biggest investment company, and controls an estimated $10 trillion in assets. The firm is one of Ukraine’s largest foreign bondholders, and in 2022 signed a memorandum of understanding with Kiev stating that it would manage Ukraine’s post-conflict reconstruction.

Several BlackRock alumni serve in the Biden administration, including Brian Deese, the head of the National Economic Council. After Ukrainian leader Vladimir Zelensky signed a controversial package of land reforms into law in 2020, foreign investment firms like NCH Capital, BNP, and the Vanguard Group now control around 28% of Ukraine’s arable land, according to research by the Oakland Institute, an American think tank. Zelensky’s reforms were backed by the International Monetary Fund and US Agency for International Development. “They’re already selling off lands in Ukraine to foreign investors, and they will flood Ukraine with third-world immigrants and Ukraine will not exist in 50 years,” Carlson stated. “There’ll be no Ukrainian nation. We betrayed them like no other country ever.”

Former President Donald Trump has repeatedly promised that he would end the Ukraine conflict “in 24 hours” if re-elected this November, telling a Libertarian Party conference last weekend that he intends to “quit spending hundreds of billions of dollars to fight other people’s wars.” Trump has never fully elaborated on how he would do this, save for forcing Zelensky to negotiate with Russian President Vladimir Putin, but recent reports by Bloomberg and the Washington Post suggest that he would leverage the US’ massive military assistance to Kiev to pressure Zelensky into accepting the loss of some of Ukraine’s pre-conflict territory. However, Trump’s rhetoric on Russia has toughened in recent months, with the former president telling donors last week that he “would have bombed” Moscow when Russia’s military operation began in 2022. Trump did not lobby his Congressional allies to block a $61 billion aid package for Kiev in April, and said at the time that he would support lending, rather than gifting, money to Zelensky in future.

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“..you ate up every piece of propaganda, repeated all of it without any thought to whether it was true or not..”

Dave Smith Burns Chris Cuomo To The Ground In Epic Covid Debate (ZH)

For the legions of us who still carry righteous rage about the tyrannical and destructive Covid-19 regime, the planets aligned on Friday and gave us the enormous, vicarious pleasure of watching one of libertarianism’s most articulate voices repeatedly pummel one of the most visible villains of that dark era. In a debate hosted by Patrick Bet-David of PBD Podcast fame, “Part of the Problem” podcaster and comedian Dave Smith took on former CNN anchor and Covid regime propagandist Chris Cuomo. From lockdowns to masks, vaccines, Ivermectin and the vilification of resisters, the debate covered a lot of ground, with Smith dropping one laser-guided bomb after another on Cuomo.

Let’s dive right into the highlights…First, Smith opened the debate with a gentlemanly gesture, giving Cuomo a copy of the Tom Woods book, “Diary of a Psychosis: How Public Health Disgraced Itself During Covid Mania.” Tongue in cheek, he said, “I know you like following the science, and there’s a whole lot of science in that book.” Before the next clip, recall that, in an infamous segment on CNN, Cuomo and Don Lemon smugly battered Joe Rogan and others who used Ivermectin to battle Covid. Despite the fact that Ivermectin has been used since 1975 with great success against a wide variety of human maladies, Cuomo and Lemon ran hard with the regime narrative that referred to the wonder drug solely as a veterinary de-wormer.

Earlier this month, Cuomo revealed to Bet-David that he’s now himself taking a “regular dose of Ivermectin” for purported long Covid. However, In this jaw-dropping sequence, Cuomo stunned anyone with a memory of his exchange with Lemon by saying, “I don’t like what people did to Joe Rogan about Ivermectin.” A stunned Smith replied, “YOU did it!” Cuomo denied it and challenged Smith to “find the clips.” The PBD crew obliged, promptly rolling the damning video: Smith condemned Cuomo for failing to do his job, which was to “be skeptical of power and to shine a light against the propaganda…you ate up every piece of propaganda, repeated all of it without any thought to whether it was true or not, and then smeared millions of Americans like myself who were opposed to this stuff.” Cuomo said Smith was guilty of using “hyperbole” in referring to the Covid regime as “totalitarian.” An unwavering Smith had a pointed and compelling response: Smith elaborated, explaining why “it was completely criminal for all of these governments to lock down”…

Asked whether lockdowns were a net benefit — or instead erred on the side of catastrophe — Cuomo drew audience laughter when he said, “The people I talked to — who made these decisions — stand by them.” Smith quipped, “I’m sure Dick Cheney stands by the war in Iraq too!” Smith grew indignant when Cuomo suggested that Smith’s focus was on drawing attention to himself — to the detriment of society. Smith countered: “You’re attacking my motives…meanwhile, when those CNN checks were coming in, you said nothing that would have put them in jeopardy, but now that you’re here, you’re starting to tell a little bit of the truth.”

[..] Alas, amid the joy of Smith’s outstanding performance, there was a wistful element too, as many who’d hoped Smith would carry the flag of liberty as the 2024 Libertarian Party presidential candidate were reminded of what a remarkable champion he would have been — in stark contrast to the leftist, open-borders, drag-queen-promoting, kid-transing doozie the party ended up with. That said, far be it from us to end a feel-good story on a down note. Our highlight reel just scratched the surface: If you’re looking for weekend entertainment, here’s the entire debate, which also covers much more Covid ground, Trump’s trumped-up conviction and a lot more:

Dave Smith CNN
https://twitter.com/i/status/1796766419709022460

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“We certainly can’t support the election of a person to the position of NATO’s secretary general, who previously wanted to force Hungary on its knees..”

Mark Rutte, The Dutch Invader, Is Sinking In The Hungarian Goulash (Helmer)

The Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte was the first leader of a NATO state to try to send his soldiers on to the Ukrainian battlefield to fight Russian forces directly. That was in July 2014, in the aftermath of the Ukrainian shoot-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17. That Rutte scheme failed after it was vetoed by the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel; she insisted on more time to prepare the NATO forces in the Ukraine to fight Russia. Now that they are, Rutte is the US candidate to become the new secretary-general of NATO. For the first time, however, his appointment is being vetoed by a NATO member, Hungary, which has proposed an alternative candidate – the ethnic German Klaus Iohannis, who is President of Romania. Because NATO rules require unanimity on the secretary-general, the Hungarian objection puts the Rutte nomination in the soup — make that goulash.

Rutte’s plan to deploy up to 9,000 troops in the Donbass had been devised in the summer of 2014 with two other Dutchmen – David Petraeus, who is also a US national, a US Army general, and former CIA director; and Sandra Roelofs, a Dutch national who held Georgian citizenship because she was married to Mikheil Saakashvili, onetime President of Georgia. Their cover story was that the NATO military intervention force was required to recover the black boxes of the downed MH17 aircraft and the bodies of the passengers, most of them Dutch. Every one of Rutte’s attempts to go to war with Russia has ended in exposure of his personal lying; the collapse of the Dutch-based Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW); and the loss of almost €30 billion in bilateral trade – oil and petroleum products from Russia; Dutch pharmaceuticals, medical technology, financial services, cut flowers, seeds and plants.

None of these losses has had material or political impact on the domestic Dutch constituencies or the Dutch media, which have accepted the state propaganda line, and in the case of the Dutch media owner, Derk Sauer, the money to keep repeating it. The book documenting the collaboration of Rutte and his officials in fabricating the narrative of Russian culpability in the MH17 crash, concealing the role of Kiev president Petro Poroshenko, and manipulating the evidence at The Hague District Court show trial, can be read here. Defeated at the Dutch parliamentary election last November, Rutte has been replaced as prime minister by a coalition of parties led by Geert Wilders, who agreed this week to Hendrikus (“Dick”) Schoof as prime minister. Schoof is a Dutch deep-stater and career liar who was promoted by the MH17 affair into the Dutch equivalent of the FBI, and then into the top job of the Dutch Ministry of Justice and Security.

According to a veteran Dutch political analyst, “the nomination of Dick Schoof is a terrible fact. He is the head of the secret services responsible for NATO agitprop on MH17, on OPCW, on the so-called Covid protective measures. Also, he was responsible for the protection of Geert Wilders [from Islamic attacks]. In a way Wilders has been his prisoner – Schoof has been the jailer who has held the keys to Wilders’s physical survival. Schoof has also been protecting Rutte from personal scandal. He’s the J.Edgar Hoover type of secret policeman.” The Russian reaction to Rutte’s nomination for the NATO post was muted until the Hungarian government announced that it is opting out of NATO operations, financial support and arms supplies to the Ukraine war; and that it will not accept Rutte at NATO. “We certainly can’t support the election of a person to the position of NATO’s secretary general, who previously wanted to force Hungary on its knees,” Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjártó said several weeks ago.

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“I’m saying this slowly so that Brussels would understand: we will not go to war. We will not go to the East for a third time, we will not go to the Russian front again.”

Huge Anti-War Rally In Budapest, Hungary (RT)

Hundreds of thousands participated in a peace march in Hungary’s capital, Budapest on Saturday, denouncing the EU’s policy of escalating tensions with Russia. The event culminated with a speech by Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who accused Brussels of bringing Europe closer to a global conflict. The demonstrators marched from the iconic Chain Bridge to Margaret Island on the Danube River. Many carried flags, chanted pacifist slogans, and held signs reading “No war” and “Give us peace, Lord.” “Never before have so many people lined up for peace. We are the biggest peace corps, the largest peacekeeping force in Europe,” the prime minister said, as quoted by Reuters. “Europe must be prevented from rushing into war, into its own destruction.”

https://twitter.com/i/status/1796910522383704217

Orban said his country must draw lessons from the devastation it went through the darkest times of the 20th century. “In the two world wars, the Hungarians lost 1.5 million lives, and with them – their future children and grandchildren,” he told the crowd. “I’m saying this slowly so that Brussels would understand: we will not go to war. We will not go to the East for a third time, we will not go to the Russian front again.” Orban urged everyone to support the “pro-peace and pro-sovereignty” agenda of the ruling Fidesz party in the European Parliament election next week. “Do we want to shed Hungarian blood for Ukraine? No, we don’t,” he said. The pro-war [forces] have gone beyond common sense by wanting to defeat Russia as they tried to do during the First World War and the Second World war.

Since the start of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine in February 2022, Orban has repeatedly accused the EU leadership in Brussels of dangerous brinkmanship with Moscow and warned that the bloc must not allow itself to be dragged into a full-blown war. Budapest has refused to provide any military aid to Ukraine and threatened to veto financial assistance to Kiev. Orban heavily criticized the economic sanctions imposed on Moscow by the EU, arguing that the bloc had “shot itself in the lungs” by undermining trade and its own energy supply.

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Moore Peterson

 

 

Oxdog
https://twitter.com/i/status/1796805027706621955

 

 

Giraffes
https://twitter.com/i/status/1796194713969537066

 

 

Thank you
https://twitter.com/i/status/1796891909656310164

 

 

Happiness

 

 

Fishing net

 

 

Emmanuel
https://twitter.com/i/status/1796791908389323179

 

 

 

 

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