Dec 142023
 


Edward Hopper Nighthawks 1942

 

SCOTUS Accepts Case That Could Demolish Entire Basis For Jan. 6 Prosecutions (ZH)
Judge Halts Trump’s 2020 Election Case Amid Pending Immunity Appeal (Sp.)
US House Votes to Authorize Formal Impeachment Inquiry Against Biden (Sp.)
Hunter Biden Defies Congressional Summons (RT)
Biden ‘Gave Federal Agencies Green Light’ to Target Elon Musk (Sp.)
Israel Now Admits to ‘Immense Amount of Friendly Fire’ on October 7th (21CW)
Neutron Bomb: New Evidence That Israel Is Using A New Uranium Weapon (Helmer)
Chechen Leader Kadyrov Eyes End Of Ukraine Conflict In Coming Months (RT)
Ukraine Was Never Going To Win – US Senator (RT)
US Lawmakers Demand Answers On Ukraine (RT)
Zelensky Gives US TV Viewers Fake Frontline Facts (RT)
‘No One Will Stop Us From Destroying Israel and The US’ (RT)
Germany May Declare Emergency Over Ukraine – Scholz (RT)
Economist: Biden Admin Pushing US Towards ‘Economic Suicide’ (Sp.)

 

 

 

 

Scott Adams: “Trump’s “I’ll only be a dictator for one day” is looking brilliant. Total nut-bait.”

 

 

 

 

Nap Macgregor

 

 

 

 

Tucker

 

 

 

 

“The justices could decide as soon as next week whether to expedite the review.”

SCOTUS Accepts Case That Could Demolish Entire Basis For Jan. 6 Prosecutions (ZH)

The US Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed to hear an appeal from a Jan. 6 Capitol riot defendant which will highlight a law used to charge hundreds of people in connection with that fateful day. The case will decide whether defendant Joseph Fischer can be charged under a 2002 law which stemmed from the Enron collapse which makes it a crime to obstruct or impede an official proceeding (like pulling a fire alarm to delay a vote?). The law has been invoked against Trump, along with 327 Capitol riot defendants – which an appeals court said the government could continue to invoke. Under the Corporate Fraud Accountability Act of 2002, anyone who “corruptly— (1) alters, destroys, mutilates, or conceals a record, document, or other object, or attempts to do so, with the intent to impair the object’s integrity or availability for use in an official proceeding; or (2) otherwise obstructs, influences, or impedes any official proceeding, or attempts to do so” is subject to prosecution.

A key word in the provision, “otherwise,” has been key – as nearly every judge overseeing riot-related cases in DC federal court have agreed with government prosecutors that rioters who sought to prevent Congress from certifying Joe Biden’s 2020 victory were “otherwise” obstructing that proceeding. One judge, Carl J. Nichols, ruled that “otherwise” could apply to other kinds of document-tampering. The US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit disagreed in a split decision, which will now go to the Supreme Court for review. “We cannot assume, and think it unlikely, that Congress used expansive language to address such narrow concerns,” wrote Judge Florence Pan, calling Nichols’s ruling a “cramped, document-focused interpretation.” [..] “We must accept, and think it far more likely, that Congress said what it meant and meant what it said.”

Defense attorneys have argued that such a broad interpretation could put many otherwise law-abiding activists at risk of felony charges, which Judge Gregory Katsas agreed with. While the riot involved “extreme conduct” not protected by the First Amendment, Katsas wrote, under this interpretation of the law a “peaceful protestor in the Senate gallery” could be convicted of a felony for trespassing while exercising free speech rights. Katsas argued that the law can apply beyond documents but only to people who “hinder the flow of truthful evidence to a proceeding.” -WaPo. The decision to hear the case comes just two days after special counsel Jack Smith asked the Court to fast-track a decision on whether former President Trump is entitled to presidential immunity in his 2020 election interference case. The justices could decide as soon as next week whether to expedite the review.

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Looks like SCOTUS material to me.

Judge Halts Trump’s 2020 Election Case Amid Pending Immunity Appeal (Sp.)

US District Judge Tanya Chutkan has granted former President Donald Trump’s request to temporarily pause his 2020 election meddling case pending a decision of the appeals court on his presidential immunity, according to a Wednesday court order. “The court agrees with both parties that Defendant’s appeal automatically stays any further proceedings that would move this case towards trial or impose additional burdens of litigation on Defendant,” the order stated. “The court hereby STAYS the deadlines and proceedings scheduled by its Pretrial Order, as amended.” The order clarified though that the deadlines and proceedings in the 2020 election against Trump case are not permanently frozen but are rather “held in abeyance” until the appeals court makes its decision in the immunity case.

Should the appeals court reject Trump’s appeal, the US district court in the case will decide whether to keep the trial date as it is on March 4, or to move it further into the future, according to the order. Trump’s case stems from charges that were filed against in August and allege he orchestrated an effort to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election that saw US President Joe Biden come out as the victor. The former president has pleaded not guilty in the case and has repeatedly blasted the legal case as being politically motivated. The appeals court received the case following Chutkan’s decision to reject a motion from the Trump camp that claimed the former president was immune from prosecution. At the time, Chutkan argued Trump cannot be shielded from prosecutorial actions over his deeds while in the Oval Office.

The development comes as special counsel Jack Smith called on the US Supreme Court on Monday to weigh in on whether the former commander-in-chief is in fact “absolutely immune from federal prosecution for crimes committed while in office or is constitutionally protected from federal prosecution when he has been impeached but not convicted before the criminal proceedings begin.” The Supreme Court subsequently agreed to fast-track the matter and called on Trump to issue a response to Smith’s motion by December 20.

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“I think we have to go down that route. That doesn’t mean we have high crimes or misdemeanors — we may not ever. But let’s get the facts, and we’ll go from there.”

US House Votes to Authorize Formal Impeachment Inquiry Against Biden (Sp.)

House Republicans voted to formally authorize an impeachment inquiry into US President Joe Biden on Wednesday, a step lawmakers believe is needed to enforce subpoenas issued by the House Oversight and Judiciary Committees, which are heading the impeachment effort. The vote, along partisan lines, saw Democrats overwhelmingly vote against the inquiry and all Republicans in favor of the measure. It cleared the lower congressional chamber 221 to 212. Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, has so far defied a House subpoena to testify behind closed doors. He has offered to testify publicly, arguing that Republicans do not want transparency in the proceedings. After the younger Biden no-showed his deposition earlier Wednesday, Reps. Jim Jordan (R-OH) and James Comer (R-KY) said in a statement that Hunter “defied lawful subpoenas and we will now initiate contempt of Congress proceedings.”

The president’s son did appear in Washington, DC, but not behind closed doors as Republicans demanded. Instead, he held a news conference in front of the Capitol, where he again offered to testify in public and called the investigation “illegitimate.” “I’m here today to make sure that the House committee’s illegitimate investigations of my family did not proceed on distortions, manipulated evidence, and lies,” Hunter Biden said, reading from a prepared statement. The inquiry vote was made more difficult for House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) because of the recent expulsion of former Rep. George Santos (R-NY), which sharply narrowed the Republican hold on the US House. The White House has defied Republican subpoenas and requests for more information, including transcribed interviews with White House staff and Biden family members and their associates. The White House argues the impeachment probe is illegitimate because it was not ratified with a formal vote in the House; Wednesday’s vote invalidates that argument.

Previously, several moderate Republicans expressed hesitancy in voting for a formal impeachment inquiry, especially those in swing states where an on-the-record vote for an impeachment may hurt them politically. However, several moderate Republicans came out in favor of the inquiry as it became more apparent that the White House planned to do what it could to block the investigation. “If [Joe Biden is] not providing the information because he says there’s no formal impeachment inquiry, that means we need a formal impeachment inquiry to get the information,” Rep. Don Bacon (R-NE) said. “I think we have to go down that route. That doesn’t mean we have high crimes or misdemeanors — we may not ever. But let’s get the facts, and we’ll go from there.”

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Hunter’s team appear spooked. They would rather have him in contempt of Congress than testifying at a closed-door hearing. The reason is that in a public hearing, classified material is off limits.

Hunter Biden Defies Congressional Summons (RT)

US President Joe Biden’s son Hunter has refused to comply with a subpoena ordering him to testify before a Republican-led committee investigating his father’s involvement in his business dealings. House Republicans are expected to formalize impeachment proceedings against President Biden later on Wednesday. The House Oversight Committee issued a subpoena to Hunter Biden last month, ordering the president’s son to testify at a closed-door hearing on Wednesday. Along with the House Judiciary Committee, the Oversight Committee is leading an impeachment probe against President Biden and has released evidence suggesting that Hunter took tens of millions of dollars from foreign clients in exchange for access to his father while the latter was vice president of the US.

Hunter

Speaking at a press conference outside the US Capitol, Hunter Biden denounced the impeachment inquiry as “illegitimate” and said that he would only testify at a public hearing. Classified information usually cannot be discussed in such a public session. “Let me state as clearly as I can: My father was not involved in my business. There is no evidence to support the allegations my father was involved in my business, because it did not happen,” he told reporters. However, Joe Biden has been photographed with several of his son’s clients, and Hunter’s former business partner – Devon Archer – told the Oversight Committee in July that Hunter’s position on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian energy firm, was given to him solely to guarantee that the company would have influence over US policy.

Archer also alleged that Joe Biden dined multiple times with Hunter’s clients, and that Hunter received money transfers immediately after at least two of these meetings. According to files retrieved from Hunter’ Biden’s laptop and published by the GOP, his family received around $24 million in payments through shell companies from business figures and politicians in China, Kazakhstan, Romania, Russia, and Ukraine. Some 150 of these transactions were flagged as “suspicious” by the US Treasury Department, according to the committees. Hunter Biden’s decision to skip the closed-door deposition was expected. In a letter to Oversight Committee Chair James Comer last month, Hunter’s lawyer stated that he would only testify in public, for fear that the GOP would use his private sworn testimony to “distort the facts and misinform the public.”

Earlier this month, Comer and Judiciary Committee Jim Jordan warned Hunter’s lawyer that they would “initiate contempt of Congress proceedings” if the president’s son failed to comply with the subpoena. “We expect to depose the president’s son, and then we will be more than happy to have a public hearing,” Comer told reporters on Wednesday. In a post on X (formerly Twitter) on Wednesday morning, House Speaker Mike Johnson said that he would hold a vote later that day to formalize the ongoing impeachment inquiry. With Republicans holding a slim majority in the House of Representatives, the measure is expected to pass.

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“That’s a decision to leave families waiting on the wrong side of the digital divide when we have the technology to get them high-speed service today.”

Biden ‘Gave Federal Agencies Green Light’ to Target Elon Musk (Sp.)

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced on Tuesday that it denied the Elon Musk-owned Starlink’s appeal and will not award the company a $866 million subsidy from the Universal Service Fund meant to expand broadband access to rural areas. Writing in fiery dissent, FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr accused the agency of targeting Elon Musk and his businesses at the behest of the Biden administration. Carr began his dissent by pointing out that US President Joe Biden told reporters in early November that Musk “is worth being looked at” after his purchase of Twitter, since renamed X. It notes that when Biden was pressed by a reporter on what ways the government would look into at Musk, the president responded “there’s a lot of ways.” “President Biden gave federal agencies a green light to go after him [Musk],” Carr wrote.

Carr then notes that the Department of Justice, the Federal Aviation Administration, the Federal Trade Commission, the National Labor Relation Board, the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York and the US Fish and Wildlife Service have all opened investigations into Musk or his businesses since Biden made those comments. The subsidy was planned to fund Starlink and help bring broadband internet to 640,000 rural homes in 38 states. In his dissent, Carr stated the FCC applied a novel new standard specifically for Starlink, ostensibly over concerns about how its low-Earth-orbit satellites (LEOs) made it impossible to pass and then applied that standard only to Starlink. He contends the decision by the FCC “cannot be explained by any objective application of laws, facts, or policy.” According to Carr, the FCC required that Starlink show it is currently providing the required 100 megabits per second (Mbps) download and 20 Mbps upload speed to the 640,000 homes, rather than the previous standard of providing that service to at least 40% of those homes by December 31, 2025.

The commissioner noted that none of the other companies awarded contracts by the FCC in 2020 are required to meet that standard and that if they were, none of them would pass it. He further argued that looking at what Starlink is currently providing in those areas “would be like watching the pace lap of a NASCAR race and then predicting that the cars will never exceed 50 MPH.” Had the FCC looked at more relevant data sets, Carr argued, it would have seen that Starlink is certainly capable of meeting the speed benchmark by 2025, noting Starlink now has a median download speed greater than 100 Mbps in 14 European countries. That, along with the number of new satellites in orbit and Starlink’s “detailed descriptions of its plan” would provide a “much richer and probative set of data” that would “confirm that Starlink is on track to meet its FCC obligations.”

The decision to deny Starlink, Carr argued, will hurt the rural communities it planned to serve. “By reversing course, the FCC has chosen to vaporize that commitment and replace it with . . . nothing,” Carr wrote. “That’s a decision to leave families waiting on the wrong side of the digital divide when we have the technology to get them high-speed service today.” Carr also argued that if the government ever decides to provide those areas with high-speed internet access, it will cost taxpayers significantly more. “[I]t will cost us orders of magnitude more money to do so […] extending high-speed fiber lines to these same areas will likely cost somewhere in the neighborhood of $3 billion based on past bidding patterns and analysis – more once you start accounting for inflation.”

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“The Jerusalem Post reported recently that cars containing the blood stains or ashes of Israelis who died on 7 October would be crushed and – in what the paper said was a first – buried in a cemetery.”

Israel Now Admits to ‘Immense Amount of Friendly Fire’ on October 7th (21CW)

For those who are paying attention to the actual evidence (or lack thereof) of “Hamas mass atrocities” on October 7th will have already known that an Israeli police investigation has already shown how Israeli Apache helicopters opened fire on the attendees of the Nova Music Festival that day. If widely disseminated, it would be a game changer, and would trigger a reversal on blind, unfettered US and UK support for Israel’s unprecedented massacre of Palestinian civilians in Gaza. So it’s hardly surprising that the mainstream media have completely blacked-out these explosive revelations. Initial Nova music festival revelations were mentioned in a Haaretz reported on November 18th, where an Israeli police source confirmed how an Israeli combat helicopter that arrived on the scene from the Ramat David base, and proceeded to fire on music festival attendees, estimating that some 364 people were ‘mowed-down’ there. And there’s more details coming out by the day…

Asa Winstanley from Electronic Intifada reports… Israel’s army on Tuesday admitted that an “immense and complex quantity” of what it calls “friendly fire” incidents took place on 7 October. The key declaration was buried in the penultimate paragraph of an article by Yoav Zitun, the military correspondent of Israeli outlet Ynet. It is the first known official army admission that a significant number of the hundreds of Israelis who died on 7 October were killed by Israel itself, and not by Hamas or other Palestinian resistance factions. An Israeli police source last month appeared to admit that some of the Israelis at the Supernova rave taking place near Gaza that day were hit by Israeli helicopters. A second police source later partially walked back the admission. Citing new data released by the Israeli military, Zeitun wrote that: “Casualties fell as a result of friendly fire on October 7, but the IDF [Israeli military] believes that … it would not be morally sound to investigate” them. He reported that this was “due to the immense and complex quantity of them that took place in the kibbutzim and southern Israeli communities.” The Ynet article also reported that “at least” one fifth of the Israeli army deaths in Gaza since the ground invasion began were also due to “friendly fire” incidents.


Drone footage released by the Israeli military last month shows the extent of the destruction of the cars fleeing the Supernova rave on 7 October, likely inflicted by Israeli drones and helicopters (RT/Israeli military)

Israel has in recent weeks faced increased internal pressure to investigate the failings of 7 October. On Monday in Tel Aviv, family members of those Israelis who died on 7 October established a new group calling for an official Israeli government investigation into the events of that day. One of the speakers accused the government of a “cover-up.” Israel does indeed appear to be covering up a lot of the evidence. The Jerusalem Post reported recently that cars containing the blood stains or ashes of Israelis who died on 7 October would be crushed and – in what the paper said was a first – buried in a cemetery. The paper provided a religious pretext for all this. Nonetheless, this is a worrying development which amounts to a state-sanctioned coverup of what could potentially be some of the most important forensic evidence from 7 October.

Since that day, there has been a steadily growing mountain of evidence that many – if not most – Israelis killed that day were killed by Israel itself. This evidence has been reported in English almost entirely by independent media, including The Electronic Intifada, The Grayzone, The Cradle and Mondoweiss. In one of the most recent revelations, an Israeli air force colonel admitted to a Hebrew podcast that they blew up Israeli homes in the settlements but insisted they never did so “without permission.” Colonel Nof Erez also said that 7 October was a “mass Hannibal” event – a reference to a controversial Israeli military doctrine. Named after an ancient Carthaginian general who poisoned himself rather than be captured alive, the Hannibal Directive allows Israeli forces to take any means necessary to stop Israelis being captured alive – even at the cost of killing the captives.

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Long read. In part 1 John Helmer provides the “history”, in part 2, Christopher Busby makes the case that Israel is using this today.

Neutron Bomb: New Evidence That Israel Is Using A New Uranium Weapon (Helmer)

The neutron bomb was invented in 1958 by Samuel Cohen of the Livermore Laboratory of California and then RAND. In 1984 he proposed that Israel construct a neutron radiation wall around the country. “What I am suggesting is the construction of a border barrier whose most effective component is an extremely intense field of nuclear radiation (produced by the operation of underground nuclear reactors), sharply confined to the barrier zone, which practically guarantees the death of anyone attempting to breach the barrier. Establishing such a ‘nuclear wall’ at the borders of a threatened country can make virtually impossible any successful penetration by ground forces – as well as a preemptive ground attack by the threatened country.” Cohen, who described himself as an “unbelieving Jew”, believed that by creating this radiation barrier around Israel, no Arab state army would attack.

He also believed that by deterring that form of escalation, Cohen’s neutron wall would be protecting the US because, in the end, Cohen believed the US would abandon Israel to its fate if the US were threatened directly. “If the Soviets intrude again in an Arab-Israeli war, “ Cohen wrote, “this time with vastly improved nuclear capabilities to back up their actions, the survival of the United States would be at stake. Clearly this is a situation where it would be irrational—indeed, intolerable—for us to remain committed to Israel. Clearly, the most responsible thing the United States can do, to ensure its own security, is to make drastic changes in its military assistance to Israel (and to other Mideast countries as well) to prevent such a situation from ever arising. Otherwise, based on the wretched history of this turbulent arena, there is every reason to expect that one of these days a nuclear showdown will arise.” What Cohen was proposing was a neutron bomb to be deployed by Israel except that, because there was no detonation, no explosion, he claimed there was no neutron bomb.

“During peacetime, the reactors (employed underground, for protection and safety) are operated on a continual basis, as are our power reactors. The neutrons produced by the fission reactions escape into a solution containing an element that, upon absorbing the neutrons, becomes highly radioactive and emits gamma rays (very high energy X-rays) at extremely high intensity. The radioactive solution is then passed into a series of pipes running along the barrier length in conjunction with conventional obstacle components—mines, Dragon’s Teeth, tank traps, barbed wire, etc. To the rear of the pipes and obstacle belts is a system of conventional defensive fortifications. (The obstacles, the firepower from the fortifications, and tactical air power all serve to impede the rate of advance of the attacker, increasing the attacker’s exposure to the gamma radiation. Vice versa, by quickly incapacitating the attacker, the radiation serves to make it difficult, or even impossible, for the attacker to remove the obstacles and assault the fortifications.) The width of the entire defensive system need be no more than a few miles.”

Since it was Cohen’s idea that the Palestinians and the Arabs were neither defending their lands or themselves, but were the “aggressors” against Israel, Cohen argued it was perfectly moral for the Israelis to use their neutron weapon “defensively”. “Regarding the morality (or immorality) of such defensive use of nuclear radiation, one should keep in mind that the gamma rays themselves can, of course, have no intentions; nor is there necessarily any intent by those who produce them to kill anyone. The intent to kill has to lie with the aggressor—to kill himself. This contrasts sharply with the employment of conventional weapons, where there is every intent to kill the enemy. The basic purpose of the radiation is to deter the would-be aggressor from attacking; that is, to prevent war.”

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“But the president has no interest in destroying Ukraine as a state.”

Chechen Leader Kadyrov Eyes End Of Ukraine Conflict In Coming Months (RT)

The Ukraine conflict will likely be over by the spring or the summer of 2024, since Kiev is running out of all necessary resources, Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov predicted during a televised phone-in session on Wednesday. Soldiers recruited from Chechnya have played a significant role in what Moscow calls the special military operation; the head of the southern Russian republic is paying close attention to its progress. He said he expects the shortage of manpower, weapons and money to fully erode Kiev’s military capabilities by June or July at the latest. Speaking in Chechen, he mused that Russia could have crushed Ukraine in three months, if it were willing to fight the way Israel is waging war in Gaza at the moment.

“President [Vladimir Putin] ordered us to keep the infrastructure and cities as intact as possible, or we would have taken Kiev. We were seven kilometers away,” Kadyrov was quoted by the Russian media as saying. “But the president has no interest in destroying Ukraine as a state.” Russian troops approached the Ukrainian capital during the early phase of the hostilities. The Defense Ministry announced, however, that it was withdrawing troops after a breakthrough was announced during the Türkiye-mediated peace talks in Istanbul in March 2022, where delegations signed the draft version of a truce. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky later aborted the negotiations, claiming that they were no longer possible due to the alleged discovery of evidence of war crimes in the town of Bucha, which Russian troops had abandoned. Moscow responded by denying the allegations and has called Kiev’s claims a pretext for the continuation of hostilities.

Ukrainian and international media have reported that then-British Prime Minister Boris Johnson torpedoed the nascent peace deal, telling the Ukrainian government that Western nations would not endorse it. This was recently confirmed by Ukrainian MP David Arakhamia, who headed his country’s delegation. Johnson told Kiev to “just make war,” the lawmaker said in an interview. Kiev and its foreign backers had counted on scoring battlefield successes during a counteroffensive this year, for which the Ukrainian army was provided Western-made heavy weapons, including main battle tanks. The six-month-long push failed to produce any major territorial gains and came at a steep price for Ukraine. The Russian military has estimated the losses of its opponent at over 125,000 troops. Kiev’s ability to secure continued Western assistance is currently in doubt, as opposition to the spending grows both in the US and in Europe.

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“..everyone is tired of the Kievan beggarman.”

Ukraine Was Never Going To Win – US Senator (RT)

Ukraine always faced the prospect of losing the conflict with Russia in the event that Washington cut off its aid, US Republican Senator Tommy Tuberville has said. The comments came after the US Senate last week blocked a bill by President Joe Biden that intended to provide Kiev with a further $60 billion in funding. Republicans opposed to the spending package have demanded tougher immigration control on the US-Mexico border in exchange for approving the bill. Speaking to CNN on Tuesday, Tuberville was asked whether cutting off funding to Kiev could result in its defeat. The senator replied that he personally “never thought they can win to begin with,” especially with the way the US “eased into” the conflict.

Tuberville also dismissed concerns by supporters of continued aid to Kiev, who have claimed that Russia will advance elsewhere in Europe once it defeats Ukrainian forces. The Republican argued that Moscow “can’t beat Ukraine on the eastern side,” and questioned how it was expected to push further across Europe. “I’ve never believed that scenario. I think it’s a good selling point to send more money,” Tuberville suggested. The US has so far provided Ukraine with an estimated $111 billion in military and economic assistance since the outbreak of its conflict with Russia in February 2022. While Washington has increasingly warned that funds are beginning to run out, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has nevertheless continued to insist on receiving more money. The Ukrainian leader traveled to Washington on Tuesday to hold a series of meetings with top US officials, in an attempt to save Biden’s $60 billion aid package.

However, Zelensky appears to have failed to convince key Republicans to change their mind about opposing the bill. Instead, some senators left the meeting while describing it as “the same old stuff” and “very scripted.” Biden has continued to urge Congress to approve the funding package and has also pledged an additional $200 million in emergency military aid for Kiev through the Presidential Drawdown Authority, which allows him to send weapons from US stocks without congressional approval. Meanwhile, Moscow has brushed off Zelensky’s latest visit to Washington as inconsequential for the outcome of the conflict. Russia’s ambassador to the US, Anatoly Antonov, claimed that “everyone is tired of the Kievan beggarman.” Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov has also stressed that no amount of money would change the situation on the front lines.

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“I said you need to thank Mike Johnson for being willing to pass a package if border security is in it, because half his conference probably doesn’t agree with that..”

US Lawmakers Demand Answers On Ukraine (RT)

Ukraine’s President Vladimir Zelensky has failed to provide any new arguments in defense of his cause during his talks in Washington with American lawmakers, several senators and representatives, including House Speaker Mike Johnson, have told the media in the wake of the meeting on Tuesday. Zelensky arrived in the capital to hold a series of meetings with top US officials to save a $61-billion aid package for Kiev that remains in limbo. Last week, GOP senators blocked the Biden administration’s major $111-billion supplemental funding request, which included aid for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan, citing the Democrats’ reluctance to address the tense situation on the US-Mexico border. Some Republicans have also repeatedly pointed to the lack of accountability in terms of the funds Washington had spent on helping Ukraine.

According to senior GOP senator Lindsey Graham, Tuesday’s meeting has failed to bring about any changes in the lawmakers’ stance. “Nothing has changed,” he told journalists. The South Carolina senator, who emerged as a staunch supporter of Kiev amid its conflict with Moscow, explained that, although he would like to aid Ukraine, border security comes first. “I admire him, but he didn’t change my mind at all about what we need to do,” Graham said, referring to Zelensky and adding that the Democrats were supposedly trying to “use” the Ukrainian leader “in a way that I think wasn’t helpful.” “I want to secure the border,” the senator said, adding that the number of people supposedly linked to various terrorist groups that were crossing America’s southern border was “just chilling.” Another Republican Senator, Missouri’s Eric Schmitt, also said that the meeting was effectively reduced to “the same old stuff.” “There’s nothing new,” he told journalists, adding that the questions for the Ukrainian president “were very scripted.”

Louisiana Republican Mike Johnson, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, who also met Zelensky on Tuesday, pointed to the fact that the White House and Kiev were asking for billions of dollars with no oversight and no clear strategy that would allow Ukraine to prevail in the ongoing conflict. “Their responses have been insufficient,” Johnson said, referring to the Biden administration and adding that he had been requesting details on Washington’s strategy for Ukraine “over and over since literally 24 hours after I was handed the gavel as Speaker of the House.” Lindsey Graham also told journalists that he’d told Zelensky to be thankful to the House Speaker for even being willing to place military aid for Ukraine on the agenda. “I said you need to thank Mike Johnson for being willing to pass a package if border security is in it, because half his conference probably doesn’t agree with that,” the senator said.

The US has already provided Kiev with $111 billion in military and economic assistance since military confrontation between Moscow and Kiev began in February 2022. Washington has recently warned that funds for the government of Vladimir Zelensky have almost run out. Last week, US National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said that Kiev can’t expect additional funding until the gridlock in Congress is resolved. Zelensky’s chief of staff, Andrey Yermak, then warned that delays in US assistance could lead to Ukraine’s defeat by Russia. The Kremlin said on Tuesday that any further assistance Washington decides to provide to Kiev is doomed to fail from the start. No amount of money can change the situation on the front lines, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists.

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“immovable, verging on the messianic..”

Zelensky Gives US TV Viewers Fake Frontline Facts (RT)

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has contradicted frontline developments by claiming that Russian troops have failed to capture a single village from Kiev’s forces this year. The Ukrainian leader talked up his country’s supposed military achievements in an interview with Fox News anchor Bret Baier on Tuesday. Zelensky is visiting Washington this week to urge continued military assistance for Kiev in 2024. Political clashes on Capitol Hill have caused a White House request for more than $110 billion in foreign security spending, including over $60 billion for Ukraine, to be blocked. Speaking in English, Zelensky claimed that Ukrainian forces had “destroyed mostly [the] Russian fleet that was situated in our waters and near… occupied Crimea.” Kiev has launched several successful attacks on Russia’s Black Sea Fleet using Western-provided cruise missiles, although Moscow’s forces have repelled numerous other assaults.

Zelensky further claimed that Ukraine had killed 20,000 members of the now-disbanded Wagner private military company, and that “Russia did not occupied [sic] any Ukrainian village during this year.” The Ukrainian leader made the assertions despite evidence to the contrary on the battlefield, with Wagner fighters playing an important role in the fighting for the Donbass city of Artyomovsk (known as Bakhmut in Ukraine). The Zelensky government had declared the city an invincible “fortress” and reportedly ignored repeated US calls to pull troops out. After losing control of the city in May, Zelensky downplayed the significance of the settlement, declaring that it no longer existed and remained “only in our hearts.” In early 2023, Kiev also lost control of Soledar in Donbass. Fox News host Baier did not dispute Zelensky’s claims that Russia had enjoyed no success in the conflict.

According to Western media, Kiev’s bid to retain Artyomovsk significantly impacted its summer counteroffensive, having needlessly drained Ukrainian manpower and resources. The push to break through Russian defensive lines, which started in June and according to Russia estimates cost Ukraine over 125,000 casualties, failed to yield significant territorial gains for Kiev. Zelensky and his aides publicly clashed with Ukraine’s top general, Valery Zaluzhny, after he described the frontline situation as a “stalemate” in early November. The president’s office finally acknowledged that no progress was being made by the end of the month. A profile of Zelensky published by Time magazine in late October said his close associates believe him to be delusional. His belief in a Ukrainian victory over Russia is “immovable, verging on the messianic,” according to the outlet.

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“..if right now you asked me to take part in a demonstration, for example, I would tell you that I have a sick mother and money problems, and I’d rather take care of my family.”

‘No One Will Stop Us From Destroying Israel and The US’ (RT)

One cannot say that the city of Sidon, located in southern Lebanon, is a more dangerous place than Beirut. Even further south, in Tyre, everything is relatively calm, except that one may hear distant sounds of explosions. Frankly, I thought I would see a more depressing picture. However, after driving through several Lebanese towns, I can say that life there continues peacefully. “Ninety percent of Lebanese people see no reason to fight against Israel and are not ready for war,” said Lebanese journalist Wafiq al-Hiwari, whom I met through friends in Sidon. This elderly Lebanese man has been covering the political situation in his country for many years and does not like to talk about global politics. Wafiq is a fierce opponent of dividing Lebanon into sections based on religious beliefs. He complains that today, there is no unity in Lebanon – the country is broken into pieces and divided between the Shiites, Sunnis, Druze, and Christians.

— This conflict has already caused us many problems. About 60,000 Lebanese people living on the border with Israel had to leave their homes. About 70% of them came to live with relatives and friends. And this happened in extremely difficult times from an economic point of view. — And what do you personally think about the situation in Gaza? — Of course, I condemn Israel. And it hurts me to see innocent people die. But if right now you asked me to take part in a demonstration, for example, I would tell you that I have a sick mother and money problems, and I’d rather take care of my family. — And most people think like that? — In general, yes. The crisis has paralyzed Lebanese society. There’s no strength left for either political or social activism. Moreover, religious division also polarizes society.

If you ask Christians – for example, members of the Free Patriotic Movement – they will tell you that this situation does not concern them. They’ll say that Hezbollah has started another conflict and poses a threat to the security of Lebanon. If you ask the Druze, they’ll tell you to wait and see how things end. That has been their philosophy throughout history. If you ask the Sunnis, they will say that they are against Israel, but they hate Hezbollah even more and believe that it has conspired with Israel and is plotting against them. And the Shiites will declare that they are the only ones who are ready to fight against Israel and will continue to fight the occupiers until Jerusalem is completely liberated. In other words, there is no unity in Lebanon either on the Palestinian issue or on any other issue, for that matter.

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How much longer can the Scholz government last?

Germany May Declare Emergency Over Ukraine – Scholz (RT)

Germany may have to declare an emergency at home in order to provide additional assistance to Kiev next year if the situation in Ukraine gets any worse, Chancellor Olaf Scholz warned in a government statement to the parliament on Wednesday. The opposition has branded his plan “financial trickery” and vowed to never let it happen. Scholz’s coalition government has just reached a deal on its 2024 budget following weeks of tense negotiations. The cabinet agreed to keep existing debt restrictions while cutting the operational costs of various departments and slashing certain climate-related subsidies. Further military and financial aid to Kiev was still named as one of Berlin’s top priorities, alongside Germany’s green-economy transformation and the strengthening of social cohesion.

“I will advocate sustainable, reliable support for Ukraine, because it is about the security of Europe,” Scholz told the Lower House of parliament, the Bundestag. According to the chancellor, Berlin plans to spend €8 billion ($8.63 billion) on arms for Kiev next year, along with an unspecified amount of money allocated for financial aid to the Ukrainian budget, and another €6 billion ($6.47 billion) to support Ukrainian refugees living in Germany. He also admitted that international support for Kiev was waning and might force Berlin to spend even more of its funds to aid Ukraine. Russia is supposedly counting on Kiev’s Western backers abandoning Ukraine, he added, and “the danger that calculation could work cannot be dismissed.”

“It is… clear that, if the situation worsens… because other supporters withdraw their aid, then we have to react to it,” Scholz explained, adding that doing so might require the government to trigger a special emergency clause and circumvent legislation on the national debt. “We have already decided to propose a debt-brake exception resolution in the Bundestag” in case of such a development, the chancellor said. Enacted in 2009, a fiscal rule known as the ‘debt brake’ in Germany limits the national budget deficit to 0.35% of the GDP and restricts the issuance of new government bonds. A special clause still allows the government to bypass these restrictions in case of an “unforeseen emergency.”

Scholz’s cabinet already faced what was called a “no-debt crisis” in November when the German constitutional court ruled its 2024 budget to be illegal due to violating this debt-brake rule and banned the government from repurposing unused Covid-19 funds. The chancellor’s plan was blasted by the opposition as “financial trickery” as lawmakers accused him of essentially abusing the legal loopholes to push for more aid for Kiev. “What you have presented as an orderly procedure has been a tangible government crisis,” Friedrich Merz, the leader of the biggest opposition party, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), said in response to Scholz. “We won’t let this trick go through,” he added. The CDU chief also said that the situation in Ukraine was becoming increasingly “more dramatic.” “You know that, under the current circumstances, this country has no chance at all of winning this war,” he told Scholz.

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“..we are going to have 40-50 million Americans that are going to land really hard and probably 10 million of them are just going to splatter on the concrete.”

Economist: Biden Admin Pushing US Towards ‘Economic Suicide’ (Sp.)

On Wednesday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky left the United States without securing a significant military aid package for his country, having to instead be satisfied with $200 million worth of old equipment from the Defense Department’s stocks. Speaking to Sputnik’s Fault Lines, economist Mark Frost explained how the economic situation in the United States is making further aid to Ukraine untenable politically. “I’m an economist. I’m not known for analyzing political sentiment but just anecdotally […] people who used to be hawks are now doing a second take, saying ‘wait a minute, what are we getting for this?’” Frost explained. “It seems to me this administration is alienating the very demographics that got them elected in the first place […] folks are saying “okay, we’re citizens, why don’t we matter?’”

Frost also told hosts Jamarl Thomas and Melik Abdul that if US President Joe Biden gets the $60 billion or more that he requested from Congress for Ukraine, “it would be the largest transfer of wealth to a country since World War II.” The United States has squandered the opportunity it had to focus on internal issues after the Cold War, Frost added. “I’m waiting for my peace dividends,” Frost explained. “Folks old enough to remember what it was like when the wall came down on the Soviet Union, we all were happy, at least most of us were. […] ‘Finally, this stupid Cold War that wastes so many resources [is over], we can reduce our military expenditures now, we can keep a credible nuclear threat, keep a reasonable Army, Air Force and Navy and now we can concentrate on our internal problems, we don’t have the boogie man of the USSR anymore to worry about.’ And it never, ever happened.”

The money spent on Ukraine and its coming collapse will be a “driving issue” in the 2024 Presidential election, Frost added. He then noted that in addition to hard economic indicators that are pointing downwards, the behaviors of the people on the street are even more troubling. “I run the local Humane Society here and pet abandonments are at an all-time high. People show up and say ‘I can’t afford my cats and dogs, can you take them?’ and that tells me, combined with all the macroeconomic leading indicators that we’re heading into a severe recession, to the point where you might even use the depression word, and if that happens[…] no one is going to care about Iran.”

Frost, who said that he has voted for more Democrats in his life than Republicans, explained that what the Biden administration has done since taking office makes no sense from a macroeconomic perspective. “This administration gets an ‘F’ in macroeconomics. I’m trying to think of anything they’ve done that has made economic sense with respect to doing what’s best for the country. I cannot think of another administration that has been worse,” Frost said. Thomas asked Frost about US Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen’s comments that the US economy was coming in for a “soft landing” after two years of historic inflation.

“I have no doubt that Janet Yellen’s people are going to land soft. I have zero doubt I’m going to land soft,” Frost explained. “The problem is, we are going to have 40-50 million Americans that are going to land really hard and probably 10 million of them are just going to splatter on the concrete.” “What are they trying to do, what is the endgame here?” Frost asked. “I cannot understand it because everything we are doing, to me, is economic suicide.” He added that he does not believe the official rate of inflation, which has fallen to 3%. “Remember when the government is measuring this, they use economic tricks, and they weigh certain variables,” Frost explained. “If they determine something is ‘volatile’ then they weigh that lower in the averaging process than they do something that they say is stable, but if you look at regular people’s expenditures on bacon, eggs, stuff like that, the prices are still going up.”

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Efficacy

 

 

 

 

Roar

 

 


In 1983 Steve Jobs replied to a letter saying he didn’t sign autographs. It sold at auction in 2021 for $500k.

 

 

Humpback

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Dec 122023
 
 December 12, 2023  Posted by at 9:20 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  59 Responses »


Edward Hopper Night windows 1928

 

SCOTUS Agrees To Expedite Decision On Trump 2020 Election Case (ZH)
Biden Is The Real Threat To Democracy – Trump (RT)
US House To Vote On Biden Impeachment Inquiry On December 13 (TASS)
Hillary Clinton Seeking To Open Hearts And Pockets For Biden – NBC (RT)
Italy, France, Germany Call For Ad Hoc EU Sanctions On Hamas (R.)
“One War, One Election At A Time” (Helmer)
High Time For Peace Talks – Arestovich (RT)
Western Masters To Kick Kiev Puppets To Curb – Russian Intel Chief (TASS)
Strategic Reflections From Moscow (Alastair Crooke)
West’s ‘500-Year Dominance’ Ending – Lavrov (RT)
Elon Musk Says Would Rather “Go To Prison” Than Restrict Free Speech On X (MN)
What Were Romans Thinking As They Watched Rome Collapse? (PCR)
Global Economy May Lose Up to 7% of GDP Due to Ukraine Conflict – IMF (Sp.)
Many Americans Are Unable to Afford Food, Even as Unemployment Remains Low (Sp.)
Millions Of Brits Will Choose Between Eating, Staying Warm This Christmas (RT)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elon
https://twitter.com/i/status/1733960832571122115

 

 

Volodymyr

 

 

 

 

Kid Rock

 

 

Taibbi

 

 

 

 

 

 

“..”this is *not* the Court agreeing to take up the case now. It is just the Court agreeing to move *very* quickly in deciding *whether* to take up the case..”

SCOTUS Agrees To Expedite Decision On Trump 2020 Election Case (ZH)

Update: That didn’t take long… After petitioning the US Supreme Court to weigh in on former President Trump’s federal 2020 election case – specifically Trump’s presidential immunity defense, Special Counsel Jack Smith had his answer by end-of-day, after the Supreme Court granted his request to “expedite consideration of the petition.” Attorney Steve Vladeck called the response “lightning-fast by the Supreme Court’s standards.” Vladeck further clarified that “this is *not* the Court agreeing to take up the case now. It is just the Court agreeing to move *very* quickly in deciding *whether* to take up the case at this juncture (i.e., before the court of appeals).” The Court gave Trump’s team until Dec. 20th to respond.

[..] Special Counsel Jack Smith has asked the Supreme Court to immediately weigh in on former President Trump’s federal 2020 election case. In a Monday filing, Smith asked the justices to weigh in on Trump’s immunity defense, by which Trump has cited presidential immunity to try and have the case tossed. The former president is accused of entering multiple criminal conspiracies to change the results of the 2020 US election. The move comes after Trump appealed an appeals court judge’s rejection of that argument. In the Monday filing, Smith cited Trump’s fast-approaching March 4 trial date. “It is of imperative public importance that respondent’s claims of immunity be resolved by this Court and that respondent’s trial proceed as promptly as possible if his claim of immunity is rejected,” reads the filing.

Smith has also requested that the Supreme Court expedite its decision on whether it will take up the issue, period. If they do, he wants them to prioritize it over all other cases. “This case presents a fundamental question at the heart of our democracy: whether a former President is absolutely immune from federal prosecution for crimes committed while in office or is constitutionally protected from federal prosecution when he has been impeached but not convicted before the criminal proceedings begin,” reads the filing. “In his Supreme Court brief, Mr. Smith conceded that the trial would most likely have to be paused because of the appeal of the immunity issue. That position reversed the one his prosecutors took over the weekend in court papers, in which they argued that Judge Chutkan should not have to stay the case pending appeal. Winning the appeal of the immunity decision was only one of Mr. Trump’s goals in challenging the decision. All along, he and his lawyers have had an alterative strategy: to delay the election interference trial for as long as possible.” -NY Times

The filing comes after Judge Tanya S. Chutkan – who worked at the law firm which repped Fusion GPS, the company that helped orchestrate the Russia collusion hoax – rejected Trump’s sweeping claims of “absolute immunity” from an election interference indictment because it was based on actions taken while in office. In her ruling, Chukan condemned attempts to “usurp the reins of government,” and said that nothing in the Constitution or US history supports the notion that a former president is immune. As the Times further suggests, “If the trial were to be put off until after the 2024 election and Mr. Trump were to win, he could have his attorney general simply dismiss the charges. Holding a trial after the presidential race would also mean that voters would never hear any of the evidence that prosecutors have collected about Mr. Trump’s expansive efforts to reverse the results of the last election before weighing in on whether to re-elect him.”

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“But no, I’m not a threat. I will save democracy..”

Biden Is The Real Threat To Democracy – Trump (RT)

Former US president Donald Trump has brushed aside warnings by Democrats over his potential return to the White House and claimed that it’s actually his successor Joe Biden who poses a danger to the country’s democracy. Trump made the comments ahead of a possible rematch between the two at the polls next year. Trump, who remains entangled in a series of federal and state charges related to allegations that he attempted to overturn the results of the 2020 election, has nudged ahead of Biden in polling for a potential presidential race in 2024, according to the Wall Street Journal. Despite the fact that his campaign is likely to be conducted in the shadow of mounting legal issues, the presumptive GOP candidate has dismissed Democratic Party warnings, that a Trump win represents a threat to the US, as a “hoax” and “misinformation.”

“Can you believe it? This is their new line, you know,” Trump said on Saturday at an event hosted by the New York Young Republican Club. “Here we go again – ‘Russia, Russia, Russia,’ ‘Ukraine, Ukraine, Ukraine.’ One hoax after another.” Trump added: “But no, I’m not a threat. I will save democracy. The threat is Crooked Joe Biden.” The former president has claimed that the myriad legal cases he faces are politically motivated, and has vowed to prosecute Biden if he returns to office. His comments come soon after he was criticized by Democratic rivals for saying that he intended to briefly be a dictator if he is reelected, in order to install more border fortifications and introduce domestic oil-production policies. “I said I want to be a dictator for one day,” Trump added on Saturday in New York, in reference to his comments days before. “And you know why I want to be a dictator? Because I want a wall … and I want to drill, drill, drill.”

Chris Christie, the former New Jersey governor and candidate for the Republican nomination for president in 2024, said during the party’s fourth primary debate last week that Trump’s comments reveal him to be “an angry, bitter man who now wants to be back as president because he wants to exact retribution on anyone who has disagreed with him.” Biden, meanwhile, recently cast a dire warning about the potential outcome of a second Trump presidency. Speaking at a fundraising event in Los Angeles on Saturday, Biden said that “the greatest threat Trump poses is to the democracy.” The president also said at an earlier campaign event last month in San Francisco that some of Trump’s rhetoric has its roots in authoritarianism, in particular his vowing to be his supporters’ “retribution” and his describing of political opponents as “vermin.”

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You’d think they have the votes..

US House To Vote On Biden Impeachment Inquiry On December 13 (TASS)

The US House of Representatives will vote on a resolution to formalize an impeachment inquiry of US President Joe Biden on Wednesday, December 13, a Republican lawmaker told Reuters. Thus, he refuted a previous statement by Representative Lisa McClain who said that the vote would take place on Thursday, December 14. The resolution introduced by Republican Representative Kelly Armstrong would instruct three House committees to authorize a probe into the incumbent US leader’s business dealings. On December 2, House Speaker Mike Johnson said they were being stalled by the White House which was preventing at least two to three witnesses from coming forward. Republicans have repeatedly claimed that the Bidens received funds from companies, including foreign businesses, for using political influence for business gain.

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“..you know you are in deep, deep trouble if you are picking up the bat phone and calling Hillary Clinton to come help you out..”

Hillary Clinton Seeking To Open Hearts And Pockets For Biden – NBC (RT)

The US Democratic Party establishment believes that figures like Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama could help President Joe Biden secure reelection next November, NBC News reported on Sunday. The former secretary of state and failed 2016 candidate has recently emerged as a key Biden surrogate, the outlet noted. NBC News cited several instances in recent months, when Clinton has advocated on behalf of Biden. On November 27, for instance, she hosted a fundraiser at Whitehaven, her family mansion in Washington DC, at which the group Women’s Leadership Forum added almost a million dollars to the campaign coffers. The same month, she penned an op-ed in The Atlantic defending Biden’s refusal to support a ceasefire in Gaza, a position on which she later doubled down, speaking on The View program.

In October, she touted the “formal deprogramming” of supporters of Donald Trump, her opponent in the 2016 election and Biden’s most likely challenger from the Republican side next year. Hillary Clinton and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, are loyal to the party and will “do whatever is asked of them,” a person close to her told NBC News. She is expected to lend Biden her popularity with women and ensure that his campaign does not run out of money, the thinking behind her involvement goes. But ultimately she is “filling a space that at a later point in the campaign season former President Barack Obama will join,” the report said. Obama’s intervention helped Biden get the Democratic nomination in 2020, as centrist candidates coalesced around him to defeat progressive firebrand Bernie Sanders in the primaries.

Fox News, the pro-Republican news network, took the report as highlighting the weakness of the Biden bid. Its contributor Charles Hurt mused that “you know you are in deep, deep trouble if you are picking up the bat phone and calling Hillary Clinton to come help you out”. Biden’s approval ratings are at a low point at the moment, with several recent polls making him the least favored president since Harry Truman, when measured at the same point in their respective terms, according to the political analysis resource FiveThirtyEight. A Wall Street Journal poll released on Saturday showed the incumbent losing to Trump 47% to 43% in a hypothetical race between two candidates. If Trump were convicted on one of the four prosecutions against him, Biden would only have a 1% point advantage over him.

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A bit of Gaza relief today. It is certain to return. But this is so crazy, it must be included.

Italy, France, Germany Call For Ad Hoc EU Sanctions On Hamas (R.)

Italy, France and Germany called on the European Union to impose ad hoc sanctions against Hamas and its supporters, the foreign ministers of the three nations wrote in a joint letter to the EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell. “We express our full support for the … proposal to create an ad hoc sanctions regime against Hamas and its supporters,” said the letter seen by Reuters. “The swift adoption of this sanctions regime will enable us to send a strong political message about the European Union’s commitment against Hamas and our solidarity with Israel,” the letter said.

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Putin refuses to let Russia become overstretched..

“One War, One Election At A Time” (Helmer)

Not even in revolutionary times have Russian elections been waged on the issue President Vladimir Putin proposed a few days ago of what it means, what it costs, what it risks for Russia to lead the national liberation of the world. Nor has Putin revealed after two days of intensive talks with Emirati, Saudi, and Iranian leaders, and then a telephone call with the Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, what plan of action for the Gaza war they discussed. “Russia is thinking about an initiative on Gaza,” Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian has announced after the talks concluded. El-Sisi was so negative about this, the Kremlin record of his Saturday morning telephone call reveals no more than that he and Putin talked over “a number of issues related to Russian-Egyptian cooperation, which has been developing very successfully.

Both parties expressed their interest in further expanding cooperation in various areas in a traditionally friendly manner based on the principles of strategic partnership.” The two presidents then wished each other good luck for their re-elections. The Egyptian presidential vote is running for three days from Sunday with the result to be declared on December 18; the Russian poll will be held on March 15-17. The outcome is certain for both. Two hours after Putin put down the phone with el-Sisi, he picked it up again to call Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The Kremlin communiqué has omitted to report what Netanyahu said. Instead, Putin gave the Israeli his personal assurance there will be no Russian participation in a Gaza blockade-busting plan to deliver humanitarian aid to the Palestinians by sea, or across the Egyptian land border. Nor will the Russian military intervene to threaten Israeli aircraft if they commence bombing Beirut and southern Lebanese targets in the war against Hezbollah.

A Russian source on military strategy believes the Russian objective is to protract the Palestine war on all fronts simultaneously, and exhaust the US and Israel by threatening Israeli ports and shipping, Israel’s offshore gas supplies, and the economy’s principal sources of income. Exhausting the US in the Middle East helps exhaust the US and NATO in the Ukraine, the source adds.Tactically, the source said, this should mean an international humanitarian operation to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza in order to deliver as much aid as the besieged Palestinians need; action at the international level to deter the Israelis using uranium radiation warheads, poison gas, and other weapons to attack the Hamas tunnel network; and a no-fly zone to cover Lebanon and Syria from Israeli bombing and missile attacks. Military action, the source cautions, should be indirect and confined to proxy forces like Hezbollah on the northern front; Iraqi groups in the east; the Houthis in the south; and support for the Palestinians fighting in the West Bank.

The Israeli reaction – “what we can do in Gaza we can do in Beirut” — is to deter Russia, Iran, and the Arab states from allowing their “initiative” to adopt any of these tactics; and to deter an expanded operation by Hezbollah. “If Hezbollah chooses to start an all-out war,” Netanyahu declared publicly just before he spoke to Putin, “then it will, by its own hand, turn Beirut and southern Lebanon, not far from here, into Gaza and Khan Younis.” Russian sources acknowledge the blackout on debate of these options in the Russian media, including the military bloggers who have become the most outspoken journalists in the country. “One war at a time, one election at a time”, according to one source. “That’s how Putin is thinking right now. How can the General Staff argue with that?”

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“Arestovich recently announced that he would stand against Zelensky for the presidency, and would campaign on a platform of peace..”

High Time For Peace Talks – Arestovich (RT)

Now is the time to start thinking about negotiating peace with Russia, with the situation looking more hopeless on the front line, a former adviser to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has said. Aleksey Arestovich told Inews that Zelensky has become a hostage to his own propaganda due to his propensity to “play the hero in parliaments around the world.” The former presidential adviser and spokesman, who has fallen out of favor with Kiev, said Zelensky currently “thinks not about the national interest but about his own position.” Arestovich recently announced that he would stand against Zelensky for the presidency, and would campaign on a platform of peace. With the cost of the war mounting and Kiev’s death toll rising to around 300,000, the former adviser said it was past time to start discussing terms for peace.

“For Russia, it’s for Ukraine not to join NATO, and for us it is to stop this war. These are great conditions to start a real discussion – not only between Ukraine and Russia – about a new system of collective security in Europe,” he said. Arestovich said that Ukraine was in a far stronger position to negotiate in spring 2022, after Russia’s troops were closer to Kiev, and suggested that then-UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson may have undermined the peace talks. At that time, Russia was seeking protection for the Russian language, the reduction of Kiev’s army, and a turn away from NATO, Arestovich revealed to the news outlet, claiming to have detailed knowledge of the negotiations that took place in Istanbul. After Johnson’s visit to Kiev in April, he said talks were swiftly terminated.

David Arakhamia, a Ukrainian MP who headed Kiev’s delegation in the spring 2022 negotiations with Russia, said back in November that Moscow had been ready to end the war if Ukraine promised not to join NATO. “When we returned from Istanbul, Boris Johnson came to Kiev and said that we wouldn’t sign anything with them at all, and that we should just fight,” he told Ukrainian media. A spokesperson for Johnson has dismissed this, saying the decision to fight was made because of the “iron resolve of President Zelensky and the people of Ukraine,” wrote Inews. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has reaffirmed that Russia would prefer to reach its goals in Ukraine via “political and diplomatic means.” Commenting on Tuesday, he said “we are still ready for negotiations.” President Zelensky signed a formal decree early in October stating that any negotiations with Russia under President Vladimir Putin are “impossible.”

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“..the only historical purpose of Ukrainian nationalism is to turn Ukraine into a weapon against Russia..”

Western Masters To Kick Kiev Puppets To Curb – Russian Intel Chief (TASS)

The puppet regime in Kiev will inevitably be abandoned by its overseas masters in the end, Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) Director Sergey Naryshkin said. “The puppet regime in Kiev, which is alien to the majority of Ukrainians, and which has perpetrated bloody massacres in Donbass, in Odessa and in many other towns and villages of Ukraine, will eventually and inevitably be abandoned by its overseas masters,” he said at a roundtable discussion devoted to the study of Ukrainian propaganda and efforts to fight against it. The intelligence chief also emphasized that Russians and Ukrainians are two parts of a single nation composed of three peoples, which also include Belarusians. “Despite the seriously changed circumstances, I mean the aggression of the Western bloc against Russia, in which Ukraine is involved, I hold to the same positions on this issue, namely that Russians and Ukrainians are two parts of a triune nation, the history of which goes back centuries,” Naryshkin emphasized.

Looking back into the past, he said, it can be said that, “the only historical purpose of Ukrainian nationalism is to turn Ukraine into a weapon against” Russia. Naryshkin also noted that historians are well aware that “many former Nazi criminals found safe haven in the United States and Canada” after the war. “The Congress of Ukrainian Nationalists established there became a direct successor of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN, banned in Russia – TASS) of the followers of [Stepan] Bandera and the founder of the notorious extremist organizations ‘Stepan Bandera Trident’ and ‘Right Sector’ (both banned in Russia – TASS),” he added. “Systematic work for shaping the ideological basis for a future neo-Nazi revenge has been going on for decades.

For example, the first attempt to label the famine in the Soviet Union in the early 1930s as a deliberate genocide of the Ukrainian people was made in 1985 by a specially created commission of the US Congress,” he pointed out. Naryshkin, who also serves as chairman of the Russian Historical Society, stressed that today Russia has gained significant experience in countering this pernicious lie. “A lot of work is being done by the Russian Culture Ministry’s museum group, created at the initiative of the Russian Historical Society. And in the first months of the special military operation, employees of museums and higher educational institutions collected trophy materials, on the basis of which they organized exhibitions throughout the country,” he added.

Naryshkin noted that work for the formal study of the history of the special military operation was commenced on the orders of Russian President Vladimir Putin. Prior to the roundtable event, Naryshkin toured an exhibition of Ukrainian propaganda publications, school textbooks and children’s encyclopedias, which was opened in the Russian Historical Society House as part of the event. According to the Russian Historical Society, the publications were collected in the zone of the special military operation. The exhibition included books glorifying infamous Nazi collaborators Stepan Bandera and Roman Shukhevich, as well as the crimes of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists-Ukrainian Insurgent Army (organizations banned in Russia).

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“The hostility shown by Europeans towards the Russian people (and not just to its governance) has pushed Russia to ‘be itself’ again, which has been to its great benefit..”

Strategic Reflections From Moscow (Alastair Crooke)

U.S.-Russia relations have touched rock-bottom; it is worse even than imagined. In discourse with senior Russian officials, it is evident that the U.S. treats the former as clear enemies. To gain a flavour, it is as if a senior Russian official were to ask: “What is it you want from me?”. The answer might come: “I wish you’d die”. The inherent tension and lack of genuine exchange is worse than during the Cold War when channels of communication did stay open. This lacuna is compounded by the absence of political nous amongst European political leaders, with whom grounded discussion has not proved possible. Russian officials recognise the risks to this situation. They are at a loss however on how to correct it.

The tenor of discourse too, has slid from outright hostility toward pettiness: The U.S., for example, might block workers from entering the Russian mission at the UN to repair broken windows. Moscow then — reluctantly — finds itself with little alternative but to respond in a similarly petty vein — and so the relationship spirals down. There is an acknowledgement that the deliberately vituperative ‘information war’ is wholly dominated by the western MSM — further souring the atmospherics. And though the scattered western alternative media exists and is gaining in scale and significance, it is not easily engaged (being both diverse, and individualist). The tag of ‘Putin Apologist’ too, remains toxic to any autonomous news providers, and can destroy credibility at a stroke.

It is understood in Russia that the West presently exists in ‘phony normality’ — an interlude within its own cultural war (in the run-up to 2024). Russians, however, do perceive some obvious parallels with their own experience of radical civil polarisation — when the Soviet Nomenklatura demanded conformity to the Party ‘line’, or suffer sanction. Moscow is open to dialogue with the West, but interlocutors so far have represented only themselves and have no mandate. This experience points to a conclusion that there is little point to ‘banging one’s head’ against a brick wall of an ideologically driven western leadership — Russian values being as a red rag to the western ideological ‘bull’. Yet, it is not clear when the time comes, if an empowered interlocutor (able to commit) will be present in Washington to pick up the phone.

Nevertheless, the enmity projected in the West towards Russia is perceived as having positive aspects as well as grave risks (the absence of treaties on the use and deployment of weapons). Interlocutors underline how western disdain towards Russians — plus its explicit enmity — finally has allowed Russia to move beyond Peter the Great’s Europeanisation. That latter episode is seen now as a diversion from Russia’s true destiny (albeit one that must be seen in the context of the rise and rise of the post-Westphalian European nation-state). The hostility shown by Europeans towards the Russian people (and not just to its governance) has pushed Russia to ‘be itself’ again, which has been to its great benefit. Nonetheless, the shift gives rise to a certain tension: It is evident that western ‘hawks’ are always scanning the Russian scene in order to locate a host within the body politic in which to insert the spores of their weaponised New Moral Order — their purpose being to wedge into, and fragment, Russian society.

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“..the objective course of history… is the evolution of a multipolar world..”

West’s ‘500-Year Dominance’ Ending – Lavrov (RT)

The 500-year-long dominance of the West is coming to an end, being replaced by “a new polycentric world,” Russia’s foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, said Sunday in a video address to the Doha Forum. The minister expressed regret that certain “circumstances” prevented him from coming to the Qatari capital in person and hearing the discussions at the annual high-profile event. “But I assume that you were discussing the multipolar world, which is emerging after 500 years of domination of what we call the ‘collective West,’” Lavrov said. This hegemony of the US and its allies had been “based on a diverse history, including ruthless exploitation of peoples and territories of other countries,” he said. According to the minister, the West suggested that it could use the model of globalization, which it had been building for centuries, to maintain its dominance.

“However, other countries, using exactly the principles and instruments of the Western globalization, managed to beat the West on its own turf, building the economies on the basis of national sovereignty, on the basis of balance of interests with other countries.” New centers of economic growth and political influence have been emerging, “changing the balance of power in the world, and not to the West’s liking,” he said. “In order to suppress this kind of development,” the US and its allies have in recent years “sacrificed” globalization in favor of the so-called ‘rules-based world order,’ Lavrov continued. “The rules were never published, were never even announced by anyone to anyone, and they are being applied depending on what exactly the West needs at a particular moment of modern history,” he added.

The FM said that such an approach is most seen “in various conflicts, which the West ignites all over the world,” including the one in Ukraine. “Everything goes to keep the hegemony. Intervention in domestic affairs, sanctions against all the principles of competition, regime change, and of course direct military interventions, like we have seen in Yugoslavia, Iraq, Libya, Syria, and elsewhere.” “Is there a single place where the US intervened with military force, where life has become better? I think you know the answer,” Lavrov told the forum participants. According to the diplomat, new formats like BRICS, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, ASEAN, African Union, and others will become “the bricks of the new polycentric world.” It should be recognized, including by those in the West, that “the objective course of history… is the evolution of a multipolar world,” Lavrov insisted.

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“Basically we will see everything that is happening on the system and nothing will be hidden, that is the goal.”

Elon Musk Says Would Rather “Go To Prison” Than Restrict Free Speech On X (MN)

X owner Elon Musk declared during a Spaces discussion that he will never restrict free speech on the platform, no matter what entities pressure him to do so, and asserted that he would rather “go to prison” than allow it to happen. Musk’s comments came during a Spaces discussion, also featuring Alex Jones who Musk reinstated on the platform Sunday. Human Events editor Jack Posobiec asked Musk what would happen if the FBI or DHS “come to X and say ‘these posts need to be censored , this information needs to be censored.”

Musk responded that the platform will remain “as transparent as possible,” adding “Basically we will see everything that is happening on the system and nothing will be hidden, that is the goal.” Musk added that “frankly if I think a government agency is breaking the law in their demands in the platform I would be prepared to go to prison personally if I think they are the ones breaking the law.” Elsewhere during the discussion, Musk explained that he reinstated Alex Jones because as a free speech absolutist he will not censor anyone on X if they have not broken the law. Here it is in its entirety:

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“When truth is punished, a country dies.”

What Were Romans Thinking As They Watched Rome Collapse? (PCR)

I have often wondered what Roman citizens thought as they watched the Roman Empire fall apart culturally, politically, morally, and militarily. Cicero, quaestor, praetor and Counsel of Rome, tried to save the Roman Republic. For his efforts he was chased down and murdered. As Cicero was, perhaps, the most famous Roman, his murder stopped efforts to prevent Rome’s descent into tyranny. The same thing is happening today to those who attempt to arouse us to our danger. Julian Assange, for example, has been imprisoned contrary to every known US and UK law for a decade without conviction for simply doing his duty as a journalist and reporting the crimes of our rulers, the crimes of the corrupt vermin we continue to return to office and power over us. No one has done anything about it, not even his fellow journalists. When truth is punished, a country dies.

Rome survived for centuries after its essence had departed, because her enemies were weak in comparison. Rome destroyed itself. As many or more Romans died in civil wars fighting one another than died repelling barbarian invasions, Roman military might ended in self-destruction. The enemies Washington has created for America are not weak. Russia alone, China alone, perhaps even Iran alone, is a match or more for America. The three together constitute a vast over-match of US military capability. Yet Washington continues to increase hostilities with these countries. The mindlessness of my government is unbearable. Such utter stupidity. Once the moronic Biden regime’s economic sanctions and the US loss of the reserve currency role finish off the US dollar, America is finished. We will be a third world country, and the rest of the world will punish us for the sins of our government. Try to tell this to an American.

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A world split in half…

Global Economy May Lose Up to 7% of GDP Due to Ukraine Conflict – IMF (Sp.)

The losses in the global economy as a result of the fragmentation into two blocs from the conflict in Ukraine are estimated to be up to 7% of GDP, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Monday. “If the global economy were to fragment into two blocs based on UN voting on the 2022 Ukraine Resolution and trade between the two blocs were eliminated, global losses are estimated to be about 2.5 percent of GDP. But depending on economies’ ability to adjust, the losses could reach as high as 7 percent of GDP,” IMF First Deputy Managing Director Gita Gopinath said.

Gopinath pointed out that the losses may be extremely pronounced in lower-income countries and emerging markets. “Foreign direct investment (FDI) fragmentation in a world divided into two blocs centered around the United States and China – with some countries remaining non-aligned – could result in long-term global losses of around 2% of GDP,” she said. Gopinath noted that there are “clear signs” global FDI is segmenting along geopolitical lines. “Announced FDI projects between blocs declined more than those within blocs after the onset of the war in Ukraine, while FDI to non-aligned countries sharply increased,” Gopinath added.

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“Hunger is an issue in America across every demographic group, and now, growingly, across more and more levels of income.”

Many Americans Are Unable to Afford Food, Even as Unemployment Remains Low (Sp.)

Despite being the wealthiest country in the world by net worth (according to 2022 data), the United States continues to struggle with hunger. A report from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) found more than 44 million Americans facing hunger last year, including 1 in 5 children. Programs which provide food to those in need are crippling under demand, as prices at the grocery store don’t appear to be dropping anytime soon. Today, it appears as though more Americans are saying their standard of living is worse than their parents’ was, a majority of which include millennials and Gen-Xers who are people in their prime working years. According to a poll released on Sunday, 51% of those aged 30 to 64 believe their standard of living is worse than their parents’ was, as well as 39% of those aged 18 to 29 and 40% of those ages 65 and older. “Hunger is an issue in America across every demographic group, and now, growingly, across more and more levels of income,” said Claire Babineaux-Fontenot, the head of Feeding America.

And when asked to answer when the “most difficult economic time” for the US was, many Americans pointed to the COVID-19 pandemic shutdowns. At least 51% of those aged 65 and older said the pandemic shutdowns created the worst economic hardship, with 39% of all ages saying the same. Both groups believe the pandemic was vastly worse than the “Great Recession” of 2008 to 2009, as well as a period of major gas shortages and inflation in the 1970s. But at the same time, figures show job growth, rising wages, and a healthy economy of consumers who are purchasing record amounts of summer travel, concert tickets and holiday shopping. As he runs for reelection, President Joe Biden has even touted this economic recovery as the result of “Bidenomics”, and has been desperately urging Americans to adopt this notion. But Americans, many of whom are struggling to pay for basic necessities, don’t care to hear these figures.

According to the poll, 85% of Americans pay more attention to their own experiences than those who pay attention to national data (66%). At least 72% are paying attention to people they know personally, and 70% are watching businesses in their community to gauge the economy’s “strength”. A separate poll from November also found 81% of registered voters viewed the economy as either “fair” or “poor”. And a staggering 76% of Americans said their income is not keeping up with inflation. As a result, the “American Dream” has stumbled: 64% of Americans now believe that only the upper class has a chance to “get ahead”. And many Americans are uninterested in hearing about positive news as it relates to the job market. In October, a US broadcaster found that positive news about the job market in the US made “many Americans feel worse”.

And those on the frontline of food hunger in America are seeing staggering numbers reach out to them. In June, the nonprofit group Feeding America found that they had given out 5.3 billion meals in the past year, while an additional 1 million people applied for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (food stamps) over the past year. Other programs are seeing a record increase in their levels of enrollments as well, with some administrators concerned that they won’t have adequate funding to keep up with demand “The demand is higher now than it ever was during the pandemic,” said Claire Babineaux-Fontenot, head of Feeding America. “This is not just one group’s issue, it’s an American issue. Hunger is an issue in America across every demographic group, and now, growingly, across more and more levels of income.”

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“Household debt in the UK is projected to balloon from the current level of £73 billion ($92 billion) to £151 billion ($190 billion) in 2026..”

Millions Of Brits Will Choose Between Eating, Staying Warm This Christmas (RT)

The worsening cost-of-living crisis will force UK families to tighten their belts this Christmas, cutting back on presents or food, The Guardian reported last week, citing new research by National Debtline. Data shows that around 6.5 million people will struggle to heat their homes sufficiently during the holiday season, while 2.7 million will have to choose between buying food or presents. According to the report, over 14 million consumers are planning to limit the number of presents they intend to buy this year, while 6 million have said they can only afford to buy gifts for children. “This Christmas, the cost-of-living crisis is set to be felt more than ever with millions of people struggling to heat their homes and many experiencing money worries,” said David Cheadle, the acting chief executive of the Money Advice Trust, which runs National Debtline.

The study showed that more than 24 million UK adults plan to use credit to pay for Christmas presents this year. Of those, 12 million intend to use credit cards, while 4.7 million will use a ‘buy now, pay later’ loan to pay for purchases over time. “We remain deeply concerned about the long-term impact that rising arrears will have on household finances going into 2024 and beyond,” Cheadle said, as quoted by The Guardian. “After missing the opportunity to help people in debt in the autumn statement, we are continuing to press the government to introduce a ‘help to repay’ scheme for energy arrears, and extend the household support fund which is providing crucial local support,” he added.

Household debt in the UK is projected to balloon from the current level of £73 billion ($92 billion) to £151 billion ($190 billion) in 2026. According to the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR), British households are suffering the biggest five-year drop in living standards to have hit the country since it started compiling records in the 1950s. Real household disposable income per head is estimated to be 3.5% lower than its pre-pandemic level.

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Boxfish
https://twitter.com/i/status/1734484946654281769

 

 

 

 

Agility
https://twitter.com/i/status/1734258869256298936

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Nov 212023
 
 November 21, 2023  Posted by at 9:33 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  50 Responses »


Walter Langley Never morning wore to evening but some heart did break 1894

 

Israel’s War on Hospitals (Chris Hedges)
The Campaign for the Destruction of the West Has Succeeded (Paul Craig Roberts)
US May Want ‘Wider War’ in Middle East to ‘Take Out Iran’ (Sp.)
US Embarks On Proxy War Against Iran (Bhadrakumar)
‘Russia Should Be More Active In Palestine Peace Efforts:’ Iranian FM (Cradle)
Sexism Thwarted Prevention Of Hamas Attack – Haaretz (RT)
Ukraine ‘Concerned’ About Western Push For Russia Talks – Security Chief (RT)
US Media Acknowledges True Situation in Ukraine Special Op Zone (Sp.)
Why Murdoch Rushed to Meet Zelensky in Kiev (Sp.)
US Offers ‘Sedative Pill’ To Collapsing Ukraine – Moscow (RT)
US Financial Death Spiral – John Rubino (USAW)
Biden Donors, Advisers Struggling Over How to Address President’s Age (Sp.)
McCarthy: GOP ‘Even Closer’ to Biden Impeachment (Sp.)
The Blob and Its Mobs (Kunstler)
As Elon Promised, X Files Suit Against Media Matters (ZH)

 

 


Mr. Fish

 

 

Nap/Crooke

 

 

All made up – Larry Johnson

 

 

Nap/Ritter: Nukes

 

 

Ritter: Israel will not exist

 

 

Macgregor – Ukraine is defeated | A disaster for Israel

 

 

 

 

“It speaks of Palestinians as a dehumanized mass. There are no mothers, fathers, children, teachers, doctors, lawyers, cooks, poets, taxi drivers or shopkeepers. Palestinians, in the Israeli lexicon, are a single contagion that must be eradicated.”

Israel’s War on Hospitals (Chris Hedges)

Israel is not attacking hospitals in Gaza because they are “Hamas command centers.” Israel is systematically and deliberately destroying Gaza’s medical infrastructure as part of a scorched earth campaign to make Gaza uninhabitable and escalate a humanitarian crisis. It intends to force 2.3 million Palestinians over the border into Egypt where they will never return. Israel has destroyed and nearly emptied the Al Shifa Hospital in Gaza City. The Indonesian Hospital in Beit Lahia is next. Israel is deploying tanks and armored personnel carriers around the hospital and has fired rounds into the building, killing twelve people. The playbook is familiar. Flyers are dropped by Israel over a hospital telling people to leave because the hospital is a base for “Hamas terrorist activities.”

Tanks and artillery shells rip away parts of the hospital walls. Ambulances are blown up by Israeli missiles. Power and water is cut. Medical supplies are blocked. There are no painkillers, antibiotics and oxygen. The most vulnerable, premature babies in incubators and the gravely ill, die. Israeli soldiers raid the hospital and force everyone out at gunpoint. This is what happened at Al Shifa hospital. This is what happened at Al Rantisi Children’s Hospital. This is what happened at Gaza’s main psychiatric hospital. This is what happened at Nasser Hospital. This is what happened at the other hospitals that Israel has destroyed. And this is what will happen at the few hospitals that remain. Israel has shut down 21 of Gaza’s 35 hospitals, including Gaza’s only cancer hospital. The hospitals still operating have severe shortages of basic medicine and supplies. One by one the hospitals are being picked off. Soon there will be no health facilities left. This is by design.

Tens of thousands of terrified Palestinians, forced to evacuate by Israel, their homes blasted into rubble, seek refuge from the relentless bombing by camping out in and around Gaza’s hospitals. They hope the medical centers will not be targeted by Israel. If Israel abided by the Geneva Conventions they would be correct. But Israel is not carrying out a war. It is carrying out a genocide. And in a genocide, a population, and all that sustains a population, is obliterated. In an ominous sign that Israel will turn on the Palestinians in the West Bank once it is done flattening Gaza, armored vehicles have surrounded at least four West Bank hospitals. The Ibn Sina Hospital has been raided by Israeli soldiers along with the East Jerusalem Hospital.

Israel’s settler colonial state was founded on lies. It is sustained by lies. And now, when it is grimly determined to carry out the worst slaughter and ethnic cleansing of Palestinians since the 1948 Nakba, or “catastrophe,” that saw 750,000 Palestinians ethnically cleansed and some 50 massacres by Jewish militias, it spits out one grotesque absurdity after another. It speaks of Palestinians as a dehumanized mass. There are no mothers, fathers, children, teachers, doctors, lawyers, cooks, poets, taxi drivers or shopkeepers. Palestinians, in the Israeli lexicon, are a single contagion that must be eradicated.

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“Christian” Evangelical ministers claim that with genocide of the Palestinians, Israel is only taking what God gave them..”

The Campaign for the Destruction of the West Has Succeeded (Paul Craig Roberts)

Over the course of my life I have watched the American people, indeed, the peoples of the West, abandon civilization and civilized behavior. Today nothing is important throughout the Western World except money. Even people with money don’t care what they look like. People dress like slobs. They behave worse. Four-letter words are common parlance in conversations between men and women. There is no longer such a thing as “polite society.” Feminism taught women to throw away chastity and to be promiscuous, and with chastity went female modesty. When I walk on the beach, females from young girls to grandmothers are sporting the stripper’s G-String, Their entire buttocks are displayed. The tiny patch in front gets smaller and smaller. Not long ago I saw a young women without a top. She had two strips of tape across her nipples.

It wasn’t that long ago that feminists were claiming the men had turned women into sex objects. What nonsense. What man wants his 14,15,16, 17, 18 year old daughter or his wife displaying their nakedness to the public? Not long ago there was a news report that a young woman had offered her virginity for sale on the Internet. I have been trying to imagine what my mother and my aunts’ reaction would have been to such a report. It is now common for attractive young women in naked provocative poses to advertise online: “I am selling my pussy.” Is this a prostitute soliciting customers? What has become of women? How did American girls get turned into harlots?

Wherever you look, all standards have come down. It wasn’t that long ago that American women would not appear in pubic or in a department store without being in a suit or a dress with stockings and high heels. Now you can’t tell by looking the rich from the poor. Sin spreads like contagion when sexual perversion is normalized and when the accumulation of money is the social goal, no matter how it is acquired. The result is that the social resistance to sin and depravity weakens. Today the governments of the Western World cheer on Israel’s genocide of the Palestinians. “Christian” Evangelical ministers claim that with genocide of the Palestinians, Israel is only taking what God gave them. The fact that God dispelled the Jews for their wickedness is left out of the discussion.

This is so sick that it shows that Christianity is no longer a force for moral, humane behavior. If Israel can exterminate Palestine, anything goes. For decades the main function of education in the West has been to demonize the West and to present the West as an exploiter of the non-white world. This long-established campaign against the West was intended to destroy the West, not to reform it. The gentile agnostic liberals and the Zionists led the campaign to discredit and undermine the West. The campaign for the destruction of Western Civilization has succeeded. Will the neoconservative delusion that Washington is independent of reality and can purchase US hegemony while showing itself to the world as the enabler of Palestine genocide come crashing down?

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“..control of the full extent of territory ruled by the Biblical Israelites, which would include portions of modern-day Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia..”

US May Want ‘Wider War’ in Middle East to ‘Take Out Iran’ (Sp.)

The United States may be hoping for a broader conflict to break out amidst Israel’s military campaign in Gaza in order to damage Iran and other foes, according to author Jeremy Kuzmarov.The claim was made on Sputnik’s Political Misfits on Monday as Kuzmarov discussed the geopolitical situation in the Middle East with hosts John Kiriakou and Michelle Witte.“The leadership in the United States and Israel are hardline neoconservatives,” said Kuzmarov, who also serves as the managing editor of CovertAction Magazine.“I think they have their own desires in the Middle East,” he added. “They may want to draw in other countries and have a wider war so they can finally take out Iran.”While Kuzmarov suggested US President Joe Biden may be slightly less hawkish than politicians such as former US Vice President Dick Cheney, he insisted the US commander-in-chief should still be considered a “neoconservative,” a political movement traditionally associated with an interventionist foreign policy.

Kuzmarov said the Israeli government also favors an aggressive military stance in the region. “Israel wants to control southern Lebanon,” he said. “I think they have plans for ‘greater Israel,’” the military analyst added, referring to the belief by some in the country that Israeli land should extend into Gaza and the West Bank. Some Israelis use the term to advocate for control of the full extent of territory ruled by the Biblical Israelites, which would include portions of modern-day Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia. Israel currently occupies a portion of Western Syria known as the Golan Heights and frequently engages in bombing campaigns in the country. The Middle Eastern nation has been involved in periodic wars with its neighbors since its founding in 1948.“I think they [Israel] feel emboldened that the US is behind them and they can go forward with their plan until the Palestinians are crushed,” said Kuzmarov.

“I think they’re excited, this is their moment they’ve been waiting for for years, to crush the Palestinians and take over everything. And that’s what they’ve always wanted, certainly the Likud Party.” “They have plans for how they can transform the whole area economically,” Kuzmarov added. “And I think they’re pursuing those goals.” Biden also spoke of “a better future for the Middle East” during his recent Oval Office address, referring to a US-led plan to build a rail corridor through the region. Some analysts have suggested Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would like to formally annex Gaza in order to ensure control over natural gas discovered off the coast of the disputed territory, which would be transported via a new pipeline. Access to the deposits would increase exports to the United States and other allies, where energy costs have soared due to sanctions on Russia and Venezuela.

“The Iranians in my view have played this whole thing over the last six weeks perfectly,” said Kiriakou, noting the country’s restraint after the Israeli prime minister called for an attack on their historic foe in the hours after Hamas’ October 7 operation. Kiriakou also praised China’s attempts to broker a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, claiming the Asian superpower is “serious about being the peacemakers in the Middle East.” “The likes of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan appreciate that, with the US… not seen as an honest broker in the region,” he added. Kuzmarov agreed that China is “starting to build its stature in the world arena” by attempting to navigate tensions between world powers, such as when they negotiated an historic agreement between Iran and Saudi Arabia earlier this year.

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“The hardline opinion in the US is that the militant groups attacking the US forces are acting at Iran’s behest. This allegation is an old US-Israeli bogey..”

US Embarks On Proxy War Against Iran (Bhadrakumar)

A massive US naval deployment in a wide arc of the so-called Greater Middle East is under way — stretching from Crete in the Eastern Mediterranean, into the Red Sea and the Bab el Mandeb and into the Gulf of Aden and all the way into the Gulf of Oman. This deterrent display may transform as large scale offensive operations and aims to rework the geopolitical alignments and bring them back to the traditional grooves of intra-regional rivalries in the Gulf region. Ship spotters first said that as of Thursday, the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower and its escorts were sailing just outside the Strait of Hormuz in the Gulf of Oman, and were approaching the Persian Gulf. A Pentagon official confirmed the location but would not say whether the carrier will enter the Persian Gulf passing through the Strait of Hormuz.

The US naval build-up in the region consists of another carrier strike group as well — USS Ford and its escorts — which last week moved away from Israeli coast and is now re-positioned to the south of Crete, according to ship spotters, apparently beyond the missile reach of Lebanon’s Hezbollah. Apart from the two carrier strike groups, the US deployment also includes a three-ship Bataan Amphibious Ready Group with the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit and several guided-missile destroyers — USS Bataan and USS Carter Hall operating in the northern portion of the Red Sea, and USS Mesa Verde in the Eastern Mediterranean along with the command ship USS Mount Whitney. Additionally, there are some number of US attack submarines in the region, but the Pentagon does not typically disclose their locations — except for a rare disclosure recently by the US Central Command of the transit on November 5 of nuclear guided-missile submarine USS Florida to the east of Suez.

The most obvious explanation for such a formidable naval buildup is that it is part of the US effort to keep the current conflict in southern Israel and Gaza contained. Hezbollah continues to fire rockets and anti-tank missiles into Israel from Lebanon; Iran-backed Shia militant groups are attacking US bases in Iraq and Syria; and Houthi rebels in Yemen are firing missiles towards Israel. During the period since October 17, there have been at least 58 attacks on US bases, mostly in Iraq. The hardline opinion in the US is that the militant groups attacking the US forces are acting at Iran’s behest. This allegation is an old US-Israeli bogey and keeps surging whenever Iran is in the crosshairs and/or there is requirement of a blame game. Expert opinion, including in the US, has always been wary of it.

Longtime observers estimate that while Tehran is openly helping the various resistance groups operating in the Middle East to push back the US and Israel, that does not exactly make these groups “Iranian proxies”. Thus, it transpired that Iran was taken by surprise by the Hamas attack against Israel on October 7. According to Reuters, at a recent meeting in Tehran with Ismail Haniyeh, the chairman of the group’s political bureau, Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei brought this up. At any rate, it is a known fact that the US establishment is well aware of the ground realities of its state of play with Iran and has not hesitated to use back channels to lean on Tehran to use its good offices with the Shia militant groups operating in Iraq to exercise restraint. But the bottom line is that Iran too has its limitations in such extraordinary times such as today when hatred and anger towards the US and Israel has risen to a crescendo in the Muslim countries.

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“..due to the approach adopted by the US and Israel in the region, if the crimes against the people of Gaza and the West Bank are not stopped, any possibility could be considered, and a wider conflict could prove inevitable.”

‘Russia Should Be More Active In Palestine Peace Efforts:’ Iranian FM (Cradle)

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian held a phone call with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, on 19 November to discuss regional developments and attempts to end the war in Gaza. Amir-Abdollahian stressed that significant efforts are needed to stop the violent displacement and killing of Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank and voiced his wish for Moscow to play a more active role in trying to bring an end to Israel’s ethnic cleansing campaign. “Resistance will determine the final outcome,” Amir-Abollahian noted. The two foreign ministers also spoke about the US role in the war, saying that Washington was planning on extending theviolence rather than taking action to bring it to an end.

“The [US] claims to be seeking an end to the war, but in practice, it escalates the intensity and spreads the sphere of the [US]-Zionist war,” Amir-Abdollahian said. For his part, Lavrov expressed that he was disappointed with Israel’s refusal to stop the attacks on Gaza and made note of the need to continue discussions set to put an end to the war and free captives. “The schedule of upcoming contacts and a number of other topical issues on the bilateral and international agenda of mutual interest were also touched upon,” the Russian foreign ministry media brief said, noting that the Iranian side that initiated the call. The two nations have been prominent in their attempts to bring the war between Palestinian factions and Israel to an end.

Amir-Abdollahian previously revealed that Iran has been holding back-channel communications with the US to bring peace to the region. “We said that Iran does not want the war to spread,” Amir-Abdollahian said in an interview with the Financial Times on 16 November. “But due to the approach adopted by the US and Israel in the region, if the crimes against the people of Gaza and the West Bank are not stopped, any possibility could be considered, and a wider conflict could prove inevitable.” On 15 November, Lavrov said Russia told Israel: “You cannot buy security, which we are convinced you need, by delaying the creation [of a] Palestinian state, and by [criminally] reducing the territory which was designed for the Palestinian state by the United Nations.”

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“..female surveillance troops said months before the incursion that something unusual was about to happen..”

Sexism Thwarted Prevention Of Hamas Attack – Haaretz (RT)

The deadly Hamas attack on Israel could have been prevented if an Israel Defense Forces (IDF) unit made up of women and tasked with monitoring Gaza had been listened to, an unnamed soldier told the newspaper Haaretz, citing sexism as the reason for the lack of attention paid to their reports. In an article published on Friday, the women, speaking on condition of anonymity, said they had repeatedly reported recent activity by the Palestinian militant group. According to the outlet, female surveillance troops said months before the incursion that something unusual was about to happen. They reportedly saw militants briefing near the border fence, training to hit tanks and disable cameras, and increased drone activity in the area.

“It’s a unit made up entirely of young girls and young female commanders,” one interviewed soldier told the outlet. “There is no doubt that if there were men sitting at those screens, things would look different.” The women said that on the day of the Hamas raid, “no one told us there was such a high level of vigilance,” referring to claims by senior security officials that they had warned of possible infiltration into border communities. According to one soldier, three or even two hours would have allowed them to prepare. “The IDF left us like sitting ducks” she said, noting that combat troops “at least had weapons and were killed like heroes” while the female observers “were abandoned by the army and simply slaughtered without having any chance to defend themselves.”

In late October, the office of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu posted on X (formerly Twitter) that he had been warned of Hamas’ intentions “under no circumstances and at no stage.” He apologized and deleted the statement shortly after a wave of criticism from Israeli officials and politicians. The New York Times has reported that both Netanyahu and top Israeli security officials underestimated the threat from Hamas and did not devote the resources necessary to counter it, in the belief that Iran and the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah posed a greater danger. Hamas attacked Israel on October 7, killing some 1,200 and taking about 240 people hostage, according to Israeli officials. In response, Netanyahu declared the country to be at war, and the IDF launched massive air strikes and a ground operation in Gaza. Palestinian officials say the death toll on their side has exceed 13,000, with most casualties being children and women.

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“..Ukraine needs more Western funding and support to restore its 1991 borders and become an economic powerhouse once more..”

Ukraine ‘Concerned’ About Western Push For Russia Talks – Security Chief (RT)

The government in Kiev is worried that its Western backers are calling for peace out of an irrational fear of Russia, Aleksey Danilov, the head of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, said on Monday. Danilov spoke via video link to the annual conference of the Halifax International Security Forum, a Washington, DC-based NGO funded in part by the Canadian government. “Ukraine is concerned by the fact that discussions among certain partners have intensified regarding the need for negotiations, consultations, meetings with the Russians to discuss the issues of the war in Ukraine, a ceasefire, etc,” Danilov said, according to a transcript posted by his office. He attributed this to a “rudimentary fear” of Russia and argued that the West should follow Ukraine’s example instead, as Moscow “only understands the language of force.”

According to Danilov, the current conflict is “a struggle between democracy and tyranny,” with the West and Ukraine on one side, and Russia, China, Iran and North Korea on the other. If Russia is not defeated, the world should expect a new “axis of evil” within 15-20 years that would include “some European countries” as well, he insisted. “Ukraine and the Ukrainian people will fight to the end. We are sure of our victory.” President Vladimir Zelensky’s top security official described Ukraine’s ideal of victory as “controlled decomposition of Russia into several parts” leading not just to “regime change” in Moscow but the “de-sovereignization… denuclearization and demilitarization” of the neighboring country. Meanwhile, he said, Ukraine needs more Western funding and support to restore its 1991 borders and become an economic powerhouse once more.

“Ukraine has every chance to become a strategic project of the West, which will demonstrate the full power of the vitality of democracy and the defense of universal values,” Danilov insisted. “The West must confirm that it is and remains the First, and a victorious Ukraine will serve as a convincing narrative in the modern confrontation between slavery and freedom!” Earlier on Monday, US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin arrived in Kiev to offer moral support for Ukraine, but had no new military assistance to announce. Meanwhile, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen told the outlet CNBC that Ukraine is “utterly dependent” on US funding to keep paying the salaries of government workers, calling the continued funding of Kiev a “critical priority” for US national security. Washington has blown through most of the congressionally approved funding for Ukraine and the White House has been trying to pressure Congress to pass more, so far with no effect.

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“..the Kiev regime is drafting people over 40 years old, as the Ukrainian youth has already been “successfully” sacrificed for the NATO interests..”

US Media Acknowledges True Situation in Ukraine Special Op Zone (Sp.)

Russia will liberate about 20 percent of the current Ukrainian territory, approaching Kiev, Peter Van Buren, editor at The American Conservative, wrote on Monday. More and more Western media outlets have acknowledged the true situation on the ground in the special operation zone, realizing the scale of Western propaganda, which has managed to cover it up for almost two years. “Amidst a flood of propaganda, the story was always the same: Ukraine was pushing back the Russians with weapons provided by a broad range of agreeable NATO benefactors. Between Ukrainian jet fighter aces with improbable kill ratios to patriotic female sniper teams with improbable hair and makeup, Russia was losing,” the journalist clarifies. It is all the more surprising to see common sense coming from an article in a US media outlet which points out that the conflict itself could have been avoided had it not been for US meddling.

Van Buren cites former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, who outright stated the simple fact that: “The only people who could resolve the war over Ukraine are the Americans. During the peace talks in March 2022 in Istanbul, Ukrainians did not agree to peace because they were not allowed to. They had to coordinate everything they talked about with the Americans first. However, nothing eventually happened. My impression is that nothing could happen because everything was decided in Washington.” Now, after almost two years of bragging about the constant supply of “almighty” Western weapons to Ukraine, it is becoming a new trend among US and European journalists to talk about a stalemate in the conflict and peace negotiations. It took only about two months for the NBC News to come from “Ukrainian counteroffensive is making ‘tangible progress’ against Russia, Blinken tells NBC News,” to “U.S., European officials broach topic of peace negotiations with Ukraine, sources say,” underscoring a significant change in public opinion on the crisis.

At the same time, the situation in Ukraine is getting worse, regardless of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s dreams. Time reports that the Kiev regime is drafting people over 40 years old, as the Ukrainian youth has already been “successfully” sacrificed for the NATO interests. Van Buren emphasizes the “manpower gap” as the main issue hindering Ukrainian success. The editor is both surprised that the Russian military has been destroying the “all-powerful” NATO equipment and unwilling to believe it, putting it down to the poor training of the Ukrainian soldiers. “It didn’t hurt that Russia’s capability versus NATO equipment was surprisingly good, or perhaps the Ukrainians’ handling of sophisticated Western arms was surprisingly bad,” the article says. Unfortunately for the US government, as the Palestine-Israel conflict rages on, Americans have been losing interest in the Ukraine crisis, which has become “boring,” Van Buren argues.

Americans like simple pictures: the good guy vs the bad guy, just like in a comic book. The events should take place far away, as usual for the US, just so there is no danger for the spectator; however, footage should be top-notch, and the map should be easy to follow, as simple as possible, just like in American football, the article clarifies. “Americans, both the people and their government, distracted by the greatest propaganda tools ever imagined (the media), seem capable of focusing on only one bright shiny object at a time. In the case of wars, a new bright shiny object must include two clear sides, one good and one pure evil, with one preferably an underdog, daily combat footage which can be obtained without too much danger, and a football game-like progression across a map that is easy to follow. It should not be boring,” the newspaper clarified.

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“..the media he now owns remains the most powerful source of information for Republicans,” a majority of whom have recently become highly skeptical on continuing to fund the Ukrainian military..”

Why Murdoch Rushed to Meet Zelensky in Kiev (Sp.)

Lachlan Murdoch, who took the reins of Fox Corp. and News Corp. last week, met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Kiev over the weekend. So what exactly prompted this trip? Lachlan, 52, is the eldest son of now-retired Rupert Murdoch, an Australian-born American media mogul, who announced his retirement in September. Last week, Lachlan Murdoch officially became the sole chair of News Corp and the executive chair and chief executive of Fox. Remarkably, the first foreign leader the new head of the media empire hastened to meet was none other than Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. According to Axios, Lachlan Murdoch traveled to the Ukrainian capital over the weekend, accompanied by two reporters – Benjamin Hall from Fox News and Jerome Starkey from the Sun.

Hall conducted an interview with Zelensky that is expected to be aired on Tuesday night’s episode of “Special Report with Bret Baier,” according to the media outlet. The report suggested that Lachlan Murdoch’s visit with Zelensky is of importance given that the media he now owns remains “the most powerful source of information for Republicans,” a majority of whom have recently become highly skeptical on continuing to fund the Ukrainian military. Indeed, a new survey by Gallup has indicated that 62% of Republicans believe that the US is “doing too much” to help Kiev, a surge from 50% in June. Likewise, the Ukraine aid issue is losing GOP support in the US Congress.

The trend is apparently driven by Ukraine fatigue, Kiev’s failure to succeed in its counteroffensive attempt, and, most notably, Israel’s war against Hamas, declared by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the wake of the Islamist surprise attack on October 7. Zelensky mentioned his meeting with Lachlan Murdoch in a Facebook* post on Monday, while the newly appointed media chairman declined to comment on his Kiev tour via his spokesperson, as per Axios. Meanwhile, it is known that Lachlan used to talk to Zelensky previously. According to the US mainstream press, media mogul Rupert Murdoch and his son reportedly held a telephone conversation with the Ukrainian president in March, weeks before they ousted Tucker Carlson, the American political commentator and writer who hosted the eponymous nightly talk show “Tucker Carlson Tonight” on Fox from 2016 to 2023.

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“The situation on the front and in the Ukrainian state institutions is on the verge of complete collapse..”

US Offers ‘Sedative Pill’ To Collapsing Ukraine – Moscow (RT)

Washington has announced yet another military aid package for Ukraine worth some $100 million, after the Pentagon warned earlier this month that it was running critically low on funds allocated for Kiev and will be forced to begin reducing the tranches. The latest package, announced on Monday, will include one High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) with additional ammunition, as well as Stinger anti-aircraft missiles and an unknown number of 155mm and 105mm artillery rounds. On top of that, the US military will supply Kiev’s forces with cold weather gear, TOW missiles and small arms ammunition. US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin paid an unannounced visit to Kiev on Monday, during which he had held talks with Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky and once again promised “the United States’ steadfast support for Ukraine.”

Russian officials called Austin’s visit a “mission of moral support,” while Moscow’s ambassador to Washington Anatoly Antonov said that the newly-announced “deadly gift” is designed to convince Ukrainian offficials that “they are still in the game and masters count on them.”“The message about another American arms supply to the regime is nothing more but a sedative pill prepared by overseas ‘benefactors’ for Zelensky. The situation on the front and in the Ukrainian state institutions is on the verge of complete collapse,” Antonov noted.

Ukraine is completely reliant on US aid for the functioning of both its military and civil society, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen admitted on Monday, claiming that military aid to Ukraine was a “critical priority” for US national security. However, the Pentagon has already spent most of more than $60 billion allocated funding for Kiev, with only around $1 billion dollars left. “We have had to meter out our support for Ukraine,” Department of Defense deputy spokeswoman Sabrina Singh told reporters earlier this month, adding that, although the Pentagon will continue sending military aid packages, they are “getting smaller.” Both the Pentagon and the White House urged Congress to pass a new spending bill on Ukrainian aid so supplies can continue, but no such legislation has been adopted so far.

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“The debt goes up, the interest on the debt goes up and that raises the debt even further, and you just spiral out of control. We are there right now.”

US Financial Death Spiral – John Rubino (USAW)

Analyst and financial writer John Rubino has a new warning about being fooled into thinking the economy is improving because inflation and interest rates have fallen some recently. Rubino says, “If the U.S. government is running crisis level deficits, which it is right now, borrowing money and paying interest on it means we are in a financial death spiral. The debt goes up, the interest on the debt goes up and that raises the debt even further, and you just spiral out of control. We are there right now. The official U.S. debt is $33.5 trillion. It’s growing by $1.7 trillion a year, and $1 trillion of that is interest costs. Interest costs are rising as the overall debt goes up. Then throw in this incredibly reckless military spending in the guise of foreign aid, and you get a society that has completely lost control.

That’s where we are now. We are in the blowoff stage of a 70-year credit super-cycle. Those things do not end with a whimper, and they certainly do not end with a soft landing. They end with a bang, and the bang is going to be centered on the currency. People are going to look at this and say, ‘Do I really want to hold the currency or bonds of a country that is destroying its finances at this trajectory and this scale?’ The answer will be ‘No.’ At that point, it is game over for a deeply indebted economy. We are headed that way fast, and these wars are taking us that way even faster.” If the Fed keeps raising interest rates, the economy tanks, but you protect the dollar. If you cut interest rates, you spike inflation even more, and the U.S. dollar tanks.

Rubino says in the end, we get a “massive reset,” and the everything bubble explodes. Rubino says the dollar is going to decline and, at some point, it starts to go into freefall in terms of buying power. Rubino explains, “If a currency starts to decline in a disorderly way, then you have a massive financial crisis on your hands. That is definitely where Japan is right now. The U.S. is headed that way fast. So, once we reach that point, there is no fix. Then it is only a matter of time that everybody realizes that there is no fix, and they just bail on the whole experiment, and that’s where we are headed.” Rubino talks about plunging home prices, more trouble coming in the commercial real estate market and why you need gold and silver as core assets during a currency reset.

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“Literally everyone is talking about it, even amongst donors. But the response is always: ‘What are you going to do?’”

Biden Donors, Advisers Struggling Over How to Address President’s Age (Sp.)

Advisers to Joe Biden are reportedly considering a number of strategies to address concerns about the American president’s advanced age.“The one number in the polling that was concerning… had to do with age, and that is one thing you can’t reverse no matter how effective Joe Biden is behind the scenes,” said Democratic adviser David Axelrod, referring to polling showing the majority of Americans believe Biden is too old to serve another term as president.“In front of the camera, what he’s projecting is causing people concerns, and that is worrisome,” said Axelrod. Biden’s advisers have reportedly acknowledged the president sometimes appears frail in public appearances. They’ve responded to the issue by considering minimizing the distances the president walks on camera and having him wear more comfortable shoes.

Advisers are also attempting to prevent the president from climbing stairs when possible. Biden generated attention early in his term when he was filmed stumbling while ascending the stairs to Air Force One; the octogenarian president has slipped while walking up the steps to the presidential plane as recently as September. Biden also attracted attention last year when he fell from his bicycle while exercising in his home state of Delaware, turning an attempt to demonstrate the president’s physical fitness into another gaffe. While Biden allies admit he occasionally appears physically weak, they insist he’s still mentally capable of fulfilling responsibilities. But the president has been widely known for being gaffe-prone throughout his career. Some worry his propensity towards verbal flubs is only exacerbating worries over this age.

Donors are advising Biden’s team to “lean in” on the issue, portraying the president’s age as a source of wisdom and encouraging them to portray him as an affable “Grandpa Joe” in contrast to his likely rival, former US President Donald Trump. “I think the strategy is not to even address it, to consider questions like that stupid or silly,” said one anonymous donor who took issue with the campaign’s strategy thus far. “Literally everyone is talking about it, even amongst donors. But the response is always: ‘What are you going to do?’” One political operative worried the campaign has become defensive over the issue, claiming, “They bristle in ways that aren’t helpful.”

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“No one in America would have known that President Biden has lied, that they did receive money from China…that he did get involved in the business dealings..”

McCarthy: GOP ‘Even Closer’ to Biden Impeachment (Sp.)

Former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy recently offered an update on Republicans’ impeachment inquiry against US President Joe Biden, revealing officials were inching ever close to a potential presidential ouster.“We have systematically followed every place the facts have taken us each and every day,” McCarthy said in a Sunday interview with US media. “And now it’s moved even closer because now we’ve got the subpoenas going in to get the bank statements.” McCarthy claimed a number of alleged revelations stemming from Republicans’ investigation. “No one in America would have known that President Biden has lied, that they did receive money from China…that he did get involved in the business dealings,” said McCarthy, referring to long-running claims of the US president’s involvement in his son Hunter Biden’s controversial business dealings in foreign countries.

Biden has denied the accusations, saying he lacked knowledge of his son’s business ventures – a claim seemingly contradicted by recent evidence. Hunter Biden is currently being tried on federal weapons charges.“We found all of this, the shell companies no one knew about prior,” added McCarthy. “This is important.” Biden has criticized House Republicans’ efforts, which in recent days led to the issuing of subpoenas to the president’s friends and family members. Special counsel Richard Sauber responded in a letter obtained Friday, calling the subpoenas “harassment to the president to score political points.”

“You appear so determined to impeach the president that you have misrepresented the facts, ignored the overwhelming evidence disproving your claims, and repeatedly shifted the rationale for your ‘inquiry,’” wrote Sauber to House Oversight Chair James Comer (R-KY) and House Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan (R-OH). Sauber claimed House Republicans’ efforts lack “constitutional legitimacy” because the inquiry was launched without a full vote of House members. Comer responded to the letter also claiming Republicans’ investigation “has unearthed new facts that contradict the White House’s and President Biden’s personal attorney’s narrative of the events.”

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“Perhaps they’ll be drawn to the church basements in town. That might be us next year.”

The Blob and Its Mobs (Kunstler)

Perhaps the anxious gloom pervading this year’s Thanksgiving is due to the dread of what comes next. No one in the public arena says that 2024 will be anything but much worse than what we’ve already lived through in this ongoing crackup of our country, and their expressed utterances are probably not as dark as their private, inner thoughts. The gang behind “Joe Biden” has successfully jacked our country into chaos. Something similar has got Europe and the rest of the Anglosphere in its thrall. Half of the public is grossly misinformed by The News, and swallows every proffered lie. The other half can’t get traction to storm this slippery slope of blob despotism.

So, the table is set. You have probably commenced the preparations for the ritual meal. We started with the cranberries last night, since the condiment has only two ingredients and would store well for four days. It came out badly. There was some rot in the berries that we couldn’t detect just by looking and sorting out some obviously bad ones. I hear a lot of chatter that the fresh food supply chain in America is broken. The bad link in the chain is apparently the trucking system. The truck lines can’t get enough workers to load the refrigerator trailers, so the fruits and vegetables spend too much time sitting on the loading dock, where they start to . . . turn. You have to wonder if this is a harbinger of greater disruptions to come, maybe widespread hunger, and you know what that leads to.

We’re going all out for the Thanksgiving feast here, a big fresh turkey, of course, and way more side-dishes than necessary for a dozen friends at the table. I live in a relatively poor county in deep upstate New York and I have to wonder how many people around here will go without a Thanksgiving feast this year, how many are suddenly mired in misfortune, default on a home mortgage, car sliding into the re-po zone, no job, no prospects, in despair, hungry. Perhaps they’ll be drawn to the church basements in town. That might be us next year.

Those of us outside the blob and their mobs know that our country has to be rebuilt somehow, and that rebuilding it must include assurances of personal liberty. I’m grateful and thankful this year that there are enough of us who understand what’s at stake and are prepared to fight against slithering tyranny. Do you see where things stand this Thanksgiving? It feels like the edge of something because it is the edge of something.

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Picked the wrong target.

As Elon Promised, X Files Suit Against Media Matters (ZH)

Early Saturday morning, Elon Musk posted that his social media platform X will be “filing a thermonuclear lawsuit” against left-leaning non-profit Media Matters and “all those who colluded” for “completely misrepresenting” the real user experience on X. Musk added that X would file the lawsuit on Monday, which prompted even more malarkey on X as the day wore on with so many pro-censorship leftists clinging to the hope that Musk was not going to follow-through, with one CNBC reporter going so far as claiming “Musk may have been lying, like he has done before.” Well, he wasn’t lying, and time’s up for the Media Matters manipulators… The lawsuit, just filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas Fort Worth Division, alleges the organization’s tactics were manipulative and deceptive. The suit claims:

Media Matters has opted for new tactics in its campaign to drive advertisers from X. Media Matters has manipulated the algorithms governing the user experience on X to bypass safeguards and create images of X’s largest advertisers’ paid posts adjacent to racist, incendiary content, leaving the false impression that these pairings are anything but what they actually are: manufactured, inorganic, and extraordinarily rare. Media Matters executed this plot in multiple steps, as X’s internal investigations have revealed. First, Media Matters accessed accounts that had been active for at least 30 days, bypassing X’s ad filter for new users. Media Matters then exclusively followed a small subset of users consisting entirely of accounts in one of two categories: those known to produce extreme, fringe content, and accounts owned by X’s big-name advertisers. The end result was a feed precision-designed by Media Matters for a single purpose: to produce side-by-side ad/content placements that it could screenshot in an effort to alienate advertisers.

But this activity still was not enough to create the pairings of advertisements and content that Media Matters aimed to produce. Media Matters therefore resorted to endlessly scrolling and refreshing its unrepresentative, hand-selected feed, generating between 13 and 15 times more advertisements per hour than viewed by the average X user repeating this inauthentic activity until it finally received pages containing the result it wanted: controversial content next to X’s largest advertisers’ paid posts. Media Matters omitted mentioning any of this in a report published on November 16, 2023 that displayed instances Media Matters “found” on X of advertisers’ paid posts featured next to Neo-Nazi and white-nationalist content. Nor did Media Matters otherwise provide any context regarding the forced, inauthentic nature and extraordinary rarity of these pairings.

However, relying on the specious narrative propagated by Media Matters, the advertisers targeted took these pairings to be anything but rare and inorganic, with all but one of the companies featured in the Media Matters piece withdrawing all ads from X, including Apple, Comcast, NBCUniversal, and IBM—some of X’s largest advertisers. Indeed, in pulling all advertising from X in response to this intentionally deceptive report, IBM called the pairings an “entirely unacceptable situation.” Only Oracle did not withdraw its ads. The truth bore no resemblance to Media Matters’ narrative. In fact, IBM’s, Comcast’s, and Oracle’s paid posts appeared alongside the fringe content cited by Media Matters for only one viewer (out of more than 500 million) on all of X: Media Matters. Not a single authentic user of the X platform saw IBM ’s, Comcast’s, or Oracle’s ads next to that content, which Media Matters achieved only through its manipulation of X’s algorithms as described above. And in Apple’s case, only two out of more than 500 million active users saw its ad appear alongside the fringe content cited in the article—at least one of which was Media Matters.

[..] Texas AG Ken Paxton has officially opened an investigation into Media Matters for potential fraudulent activity: “The Office of the Attorney General (“OAG”) is opening an investigation into Media Matters for potential fraudulent activity. Under the Texas Business Organizations Code and the Deceptive Trade Practices Act, the OAG will vigorously enforce against nonprofits who commit fraudulent acts in or affecting the state of Texas. Attorney General Paxton was extremely troubled by the allegations that Media Matters, a radical anti-free speech organization, fraudulently manipulated data on X.com (formerly known as Twitter). “We are examining the issue closely to ensure that the public has not been deceived by the schemes of radical left-wing organizations who would like nothing more than to limit freedom by reducing participation in the public square,” said Attorney General Paxton.

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Albanese

 

 

Just stop oil
https://twitter.com/i/status/1726482376187171116

 

 

Climate science

 

 

 

 

WEF terrorism

 

 

Fractals
https://twitter.com/i/status/1726574104739029119

 

 

 

 

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Oct 022023
 
 October 2, 2023  Posted by at 8:47 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  23 Responses »


Rembrandt van Rijn The Descent from the Cross 1634

 

The Western World Is Now a Tyranny (Paul Craig Roberts)
One Year Lying About US-Led NATO’s Nord Stream Terrorism Breeds More War (SCF)
Western ‘Idiots’ Want World War III – Medvedev (RT)
PM Sunak Backtracks On Sending British Troops To Ukraine (ZH)
Ukraine Must Mobilize Youths – Ex-UK Defense Chief (RT)
EU Will Back Ukraine Without The US – Borrell (RT)
‘My People Have Bigger Problems Than Ukraine’ – Fico (RT)
Russia’s Military Budget Set To Rise By 70% (RMX)
‘Camouflage’ for Zelensky to ‘Steal More Money From West’ (Sp.)
Blinken’s ‘History Lesson’ Gets Corrected By X Users (RT)
Nagorno-Karabakh Is No More (Pepe Escobar)
The Proper Way to Impeach: Steve Bannon was Right for the Wrong Reason (Turley)
Federal Prosecutors Want Gag Order Against Trump After His Recent Remarks (ET)
Trump Sues Christopher Steele Over Hoax Dossier (ZH)

 

 

 

 

Scott Ritter About Ukraine since 1945

 

 

 

 

TDS

 

 

 

 

Vandersteel

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s all been said before..

“..a sovereignty whose obligation to govern impartially is as compelling as its obligation to govern at all..”

The Western World Is Now a Tyranny (Paul Craig Roberts)

America’s reputation as “the land of the free” is rooted in the Anglo-Saxon legal and political tradition, not in diversity and multiculturalism. Law as a shield of the people instead of a weapon in the hands of rulers is a British achievement that Britain’s American colonies inherited. It was the accomplishment of a specific ethnicity known as Anglo-Saxon. Bringing rulers to the same accountability to law as the lowest peasant was a centuries-long process beginning with Alfred the Great in the 9th century and culminating in the Glorious Revolution of 1680. In this legal tradition law is based in the customs and mores of the people, not on edicts issued from rulers, government bureaucrats, regulatory agencies, and activist judges. Obviously, this conveys an ethnic basis to law. A Tower of Babel–the fate of all diminishing white countries today–has no common customs and mores and no basis for law other than rulers’ edicts enforced by power.

Throughout the Western World today the people have lost the protection of law as a shield and suffer under rulers who wield law as a weapon. In the United States today demonstrators and rally attendees are turned into “insurrectionists” and sentenced to prison. Even US President Donald Trump is being subjected to four fake felony prosecutions in order to prevent him from being elected president. During my youth law was seen as a shield of our rights, not as a weapon to be used against us. US Supreme Court Justice George Sutherland explained in 1934 that the purpose of law was to discover innocence or guilt, not to dispose of an enemy:

“The United States Attorney is the representative not of an ordinary party to a controversy, but of a sovereignty whose obligation to govern impartially is as compelling as its obligation to govern at all; and whose interest, therefore, in a criminal prosecution is not that it shall win a case, but that justice shall be done. As such, he is in a peculiar and very definite sense the servant of the law, the twofold aim of which is that guilt shall not escape or innocent suffer. He may prosecute with earnestness and vigor–and indeed, he should do so. But, while he may strike hard blows, he is not at liberty to strike foul ones. It is as much his duty to refrain from improper methods calculated to produce a wrongful conviction as it is to use every legitimate means to bring about a just one.”

US Attorney General and Supreme Court Justice Robert Jackson saw it the same way: “Any prosecutor who risks his day-to-day professional name for fair dealing to build up statistics for success has a perverted sense of practical values, as well as defects of character… A sensitiveness to fair play is perhaps the best protection against the abuse of power, and the citizen’s safety lies in the prosecutor who tempers zeal with human kindness, who seeks truth and not victims, who serves the law and not factional purposes, and who approaches his task with humility.” In 1940 Jackson said that unethical prosecutors are a threat to justice because of the danger that the prosecutor..

..“will pick people that he thinks he should get, rather than pick cases that need to be prosecuted. With the law books filled with a great assortment of crimes, a prosecutor stands a fair chance of finding at least a technical violation of some act on the part of almost anyone. In such a case, it is not a question of discovering the commission of a crime and then looking for the man who has committed it, it is a question of picking the man and then searching the law books, or putting investigators to work, to pin some offense on him. It is in this realm–in which the prosecutor picks some person whom he dislikes or desires to embarrass, or selects some group of unpopular persons and then looks for an offense, that the greatest danger of abuse of prosecuting power lies. It is here that law enforcement becomes personal, and the real crime becomes that of being unpopular with the predominant or governing group, being attached to the wrong political view, or being personally obnoxious, or in the way of the prosecutor himself.”

Robert Jackson’s 83-year old description of unethical prosecution precisely describes all of the “investigations,” impeachments, and indictments of President Trump that have been ongoing since 2016 for 8 years and show no sign of abating. The prosecutions of Trump are clearly prosecutions for the purpose of getting rid of a leader who presumes to challenge the ruling establishment. The prosecutions of Trump underline the termination in the US of the impartial rule of law.

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“The reality is fascism, imperialist lawlessness and barbarity are already well-ensconced in this White House.”

One Year Lying About US-Led NATO’s Nord Stream Terrorism Breeds More War (SCF)

Washington’s imperialist interests of dominating Europe and displacing Russia as an energy supplier are central to the reason for the war in Ukraine. This selfish and criminal agenda becomes evident if the Nord Stream act of terrorism is acknowledged and properly understood. The Western public would be up in arms over the false propaganda about the Ukraine war and the supposed “defense of democracy”. Not only that but the European and NATO states would be seen as the criminal accomplices and pathetic vassals that they are. The United States sabotages European civilian infrastructure and the economies of its supposed allies – and yet those allies utter not a word of protest. Indeed, they have willingly and meekly participated in their self-harm.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and other European leaders should be prosecuted for complicity in international terrorism and treason against their national interests. Ironically, this week, Joe Biden while in Arizona dared to tell American voters that they face a stark choice in the presidential elections coming next year. Biden said the choice would be for U.S. citizens to either “support democracy” under his continued leadership or “elect extremism” under Donald Trump or some other Republican candidate. What could be more extreme than Biden ordering his military agencies to blow up gas pipelines owned by Russia and other European states?The fact that Biden and the United States have been permitted to get away with the outrage of Nord Stream terrorism is why Washington and its NATO acolytes have continually escalated the proxy war in Ukraine against Russia over the past year.

The astounding impunity afforded to the U.S. and its NATO accomplices over the Nord Stream incident is consistent with the way these same imperialist powers have gotten away with mass murder and waging criminal wars for decades without any prosecutions. The U.S. establishment and its clandestine agencies are a criminal syndicate that also suffers from delusions of virtue. Impunity breeds more criminality. The United States and its Western partners have rarely, if ever, been held to account for their historic crimes against the rest of the world. When such a transparent, brazen act of terrorism is perpetrated as in the Nord Stream sabotage and it is ignored then the world has shifted to an even more perilous situation where crimes have no punishment and even greater, more nefarious crimes can be engaged in.

The U.S. and its NATO henchmen, in particular Britain, are arming a Nazi regime in Kiev with tanks, cluster bombs, depleted uranium shells and longer-range missiles to strike Russia. The impunity that the Americans and their partners believe that they have acquired is shocking and hideous. There is no restraint. For years, the NATO axis has been arming and training Nazi battalions in Ukraine to cynically take an imperialist war to Russia’s doorstep. Canada’s scandalous adulation of a Nazi war criminal in its parliament last week is a sign of the depraved times we live in. But we have reached this degeneration because, as the Nord Stream incident illustrates, the Western powers, primarily the executive American power, feel they are not just above the law but entitled to smash the law for whatever objective they deem desirable.

When those who profess to uphold the law, break the law, then there is no law. That is the frighteningly barbaric world we live in today. Biden warned this week of fascism creeping up on the United States in the form of domestic political rivals. The reality is fascism, imperialist lawlessness and barbarity are already well-ensconced in this White House.

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“..a “freshly minted cretin”..

“..the [Russian] strikes on German factories where those missiles are being made would also be in full compliance with international law..”

Western ‘Idiots’ Want World War III – Medvedev (RT)

The conflict in Ukraine may lead to World War III because of the “idiots” occupying leading roles in the West, former Russian president Dmitry Medvedev has warned. “The number of high-ranking morons is rising in NATO member states,” he wrote on Telegram on Sunday. Medvedev, who currently serves as the deputy head of Russia’s Security Council, was responding to statements from London and Berlin the previous day. The former president labeled the UK’s newly appointed Defense Secretary Grant Shapps a “freshly minted cretin” over his idea of sending British military instructors to Ukraine to train local troops for the conflict with Russia. If this happens, the UK servicemen would become a “legitimate target” for Russian forces, Medvedev warned.

Shapps has proposed deploying instructors to Ukraine, “knowing fully well that they’ll be mercilessly destroyed, and no longer as mercenaries, but precisely as British NATO specialists,” the Russian official wrote. Medvedev also described the head of the German parliament’s defense committee, Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann, as “another fool” after she urged Berlin to supply long-range Taurus cruise missiles to Kiev. She also claimed that Ukrainian attacks on targets inside Russia using those German-made munitions would be in full compliance with international law. “In this case, the [Russian] strikes on German factories where those missiles are being made would also be in full compliance with international law,” he said.

“Still, those idiots are actively pushing us towards World War III,”the former president concluded. In a previous post on Saturday, Medvedev insisted that Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine would continue until the current regime in Kiev is “destroyed and the historic Russian territories are liberated from the enemy.” Moscow has repeatedly warned that deliveries of weapons to Ukraine by Western countries only prolong the fighting and increase the risk of a direct military confrontation between Russia and NATO. Russian officials have also argued that the provision of arms, intelligence-sharing and the training of Kiev’s troops already means that Western nations have de facto become parties to the conflict.

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Are they just flying trial balloons over there?

PM Sunak Backtracks On Sending British Troops To Ukraine (ZH)

On Sunday, former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev who currently serves as the deputy head of Russia’s Security Council, suggested that British soldiers training Ukrainian troops in Ukraine would be legitimate targets for Russian forces, as would German factories producing Taurus missiles should they supply Kyiv. Medvedev, who is deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council, and has become one of the most hawkish and anti-Western figures in Russian politics, said such steps by the West were bringing World War Three closer. In a post on Telegram, Medvedev first slammed Shapps’s proposal to deploy military instructors to Ukraine, in addition to training Ukrainian armed forces in Britain or other Western countries as at present. “(This will) turn their instructors into a legitimate target for our armed forces,” Medvedev wrote on Telegram. “Understanding perfectly well that they will be ruthlessly destroyed. And not as mercenaries, but namely as British NATO specialists.”

Medvedev then turned his focus to Germany, vilifying those who want Berlin to supply Ukraine with Taurus cruise missiles that could strike Russian territory and try to limit Moscow’s supply to its army. “They say this is in accordance with international law. Well, in that case, strikes on German factories where these missiles are made would also be in full compliance with international law,” Medvedev said. “These morons are actively pushing us towards World War Three,” Medvedev said. Realizing that he probably does not want his government to end in a mushroom cloud, British PM Rishi Sunak quickly backtracked and during a visit to Burnley on Sunday, said he wanted to make the situation “absolutely clear,” explaining that Shapps did not mean British soldiers would be deployed in Ukraine during the conflict with Russia, claiming there was “some misreporting” of comments by Defense Secretary Shapps, who floated the idea; he did however say that the UK has been training Ukrainian soldiers on British soil for “for a long time.”

According to the PM, the defense secretary actually meant that “it might well be possible one day in the future for us to do some of that training in Ukraine.” “But that’s something for the long term, not the here and now, there are no British soldiers that will be sent to fight in the current conflict. That’s not what’s happening,” he insisted. London continues to provide military training to the Ukrainians, but it’s “doing that here in the UK,” Sunak assured. US Republican congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene also voiced alarm over Britain’s apparent plans to send troops to Ukraine, writing on X (formerly Twitter): “They’re going to start World War III” and that “the US cannot participate” in such a deployment, stressing: “No American troops” in Ukraine.

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Come get killed at 16!

Ukraine Must Mobilize Youths – Ex-UK Defense Chief (RT)

Former UK Defense Secretary Ben Wallace has claimed that Kiev is succeeding in its counteroffensive but to maintain the momentum and “finish the job,” President Vladimir Zelensky must throw more and younger Ukrainians into battle, while the West provides them with weapons to defeat Russia. Throughout the summer, Kiev’s forces have ultimately failed to make any notable territorial gains and have suffered heavy casualties as they tried to break through Russia’s defenses consisting of vast minefields, as well as heavy artillery and swarms of drones. According to Russia’s Defense Ministry, the number of Ukrainian servicemen killed since the start of the counteroffensive has surpassed 83,000.

Wallace, however, believes that “slowly but surely” Ukrainian forces have been “adapting tactics, absorbing lessons, and making the best of the equipment we have all gifted them,” and that Kiev’s victory is imminent as long as the government “plays its part.” “The average age of the soldiers at the front is over 40. I understand President Zelensky’s desire to preserve the young for the future, but… just as Britain did in 1939 and 1941, perhaps it is time to reassess the scale of Ukraine’s mobilization,” Wallace wrote in an opinion piece published by The Telegraph on Sunday. Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said that such heavy casualties were the result of Kiev throwing untrained soldiers into “senseless assaults and slaughter.”He added that these “cynical actions by the West and their henchmen in Kiev are only pushing Ukraine towards self-destruction.”

Back in July, Wallace called Ukraine a “battle lab” for the British military during a report to the parliament. “Let us not pause for one day,” he stated on Sunday. “The world is watching to see if the West has the resolve to stand up for our values and the rules-based system. What we do now for Ukraine will set the direction for all of our security for years to come.” Mobilization in Ukraine has been ongoing since the start of the conflict and had some bumps recently. The country has been hit by scandals involving conscription chiefs, prompting President Vladimir Zelensky to announce in August that he was firing all regional draft heads in the country.

The Ukrainian government has relaxed eligibility standards for recruits, declaring people with certain mental and physical conditions fit for duty. After the launch of Russia’s military operation, Kiev barred men aged between 18 and 60 from leaving the country. Kiev also recently ordered female medics and pharmacists to register for possible enrolment, reportedly causing an exodus of women in those professions. The Russian military leadership in the meantime has no plans to conduct mobilization as its current needs are fulfilled by career military service members, including those who volunteered to fight in Ukraine, according to a senior official. The Russian president reported earlier this month that some 300,000 people had enrolled in the Russian army this year alone.

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Europe’s already sinking into a black hole. Forget it.

EU Will Back Ukraine Without The US – Borrell (RT)

The EU’s military aid to Ukraine will not depend on the decisions taken by the US, the bloc’s top diplomat, Josep Borrell, told journalists during his visit to Kiev on Sunday. Brussels plans to continue and further increase its military assistance to the Ukrainian forces, he added. “We have not waited for the [US] decision to be taken to increase our propositions to support Ukraine,” the official said when asked about the EU’s reaction to the US Congress removing military aid for Kiev from its short-time spending bill passed over the weekend. Brussels still regretted the American lawmakers’ decision “deeply and thoroughly,” Borrell said, expressing his hope that “this will not be a definitive decision, and Ukraine will continue having the support of the US.”

The EU Commission had earlier proposed creating a fund for Ukraine worth €50 billion ($52.8 billion), the bloc’s top diplomat said, adding that he also suggested creating a similar fund amounting to €20 billion ($21.13 billion) within the European Peace Facility at an EU foreign ministers meeting in August. “Let’s see what’ll be happening in the US but from our side, we will continue supporting and increasing our support,” the official said. The EU’s top diplomat also maintained that the bloc’s military aid for Kiev is “permanent structured” and does not depend on the decisions of other nations or the results of the Ukrainian operations. His comments came amid the continued Ukrainian offensive, which has failed to bring about any major changes to the frontlines over some four months since its launch, despite massive Western military aid before its start and heavy Ukrainian losses over its course.

“We are facing an existential threat for Europe,” Borrell claimed, adding that if Brussels wants the Ukrainian troops to be “more successful, we have to provide them with better arms and quicker.” He still hinted that Kiev should be more grateful for the bloc’s efforts. In some cases, “our support is not being perceived as important as it is,” the EU top diplomat said, insisting that “it is.” He then said that the total military aid from Brussels and the EU member states to Ukraine amounted to €25 billion ($26.4 billion). The bloc’s cumulative military, financial and humanitarian support reached €85 billion ($89.8 billion), he added.

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I said yesterday that he campaigned on “Not a single penny” more, but it was “Not a single round..”

Meanwhile, Donald Tusk held a mass pro-globalist rally in Warsaw on Sunday. We’re not done yet.

‘My People Have Bigger Problems Than Ukraine’ – Fico (RT)

The Slovak Social Democracy (SMER-SD) party will not support further military aid for Ukraine, its leader, Robert Fico, told journalists on Sunday. Fico’s party took the lead in the parliamentary elections held over the weekend and is now poised to start talks about forming a government. “Slovakia and the people of Slovakia have bigger problems than Ukraine,” he said at a press conference following the announcement of the election results. The SMER-SD won around 23% of the vote, with its closest competitor, Progressive Slovakia (PS), receiving some 18%. When asked about his party’s stance on helping Kiev, Fico said that, if his party successfully forms a government, it would still be ready to help, but only in a humanitarian way.

“We are prepared to help with the reconstruction of the state, but you know our opinion on arming Ukraine,” he said. The SMER-SD conducted an election campaign under the slogan “Not a single round,” suggesting that it would end military assistance to Kiev. An EU and NATO member state with a population of around 5.5 million, Slovakia has already supplied Ukrainian forces with armored personnel carriers, howitzers, and its entire fleet of Soviet-era MiG-29 fighter jets. Last week, Fico vowed at one of his campaign rallies that his party would not “send a single round [of ammunition] to Ukraine” if it won the election. On Sunday, the politician, who is a former prime minister, described the ongoing conflict as a great tragedy, adding that prolonging the standoff would only make things worse.

“We will do everything we can to start peace negotiations as quickly as possible,” he said, referring to the conflict between Moscow and Kiev. “Further killing does not benefit anyone,” Fico added. Slovakian President Zuzana Caputova said on Sunday that she would formally ask Fico to form a new government on Monday. With no party set to win a majority, Slovakia will need to form a coalition government. The pro-European HLAS (Voice) party, which took third place with 14.7%, did not rule out a possible alliance with SMER-SD. Fico also received congratulations on his election victory from Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who said it would “always [be] good to work together with a patriot.” A victory by Fico and his party has reportedly sparked concerns in the US. According to Russian foreign intelligence, Washington had sought to keep the previous Slovakian government in power.

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Poorly write-up.

Russia’s Military Budget Set To Rise By 70% (RMX)

Russian military spending is set to rise by almost 70 percent — to €106 billion — by 2024, according to a Russian Finance Ministry document published Thursday, an increase that illustrates Moscow’s determination to continue its military intervention in Ukraine despite the human and economic costs. According to the document, Russian defense spending will increase by 68 percent in 2024 compared to this year and will reach 10.8 trillion rubles (€106 billion). As a result, the amount allocated to defense will represent about 30 percent of total federal spending in 2024 and 6 percent of GDP — a first in Russia’s modern history. The budget for internal security is set to rise to 3.4 trillion rubles (€33 billion), almost 10 percent of annual federal spending.

The priorities for this budget are outlined as “strengthening the country’s defense capacity” and “integrating the new regions” of Ukraine whose annexation Moscow has demanded, as well as “social aid for the most vulnerable citizens,” just months ahead of the Russian presidential elections in spring 2024. Conversely, total spending on education, healthcare and environmental protection accounts for barely a third of the defense budget, according to ministry figures. Overall, federal spending will total 36.7 trillion rubles (€359 billion), a dramatic 20 percent increase over 2023. The government, however, has explained little about how it will finance this large increase, as Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Musustin said last Friday that revenues from the sale of hydrocarbons will be down sharply and will account for “a third of next year’s budget” in 2024, whereas before the invasion of Ukraine, they accounted for half the budget.

The sector used to drive Russia’s growth, hydrocarbon sales are declining due to international sanctions and the European Union’s determination to move away from energy dependence on Moscow. One indication that the government expects a delicate month ahead for the Russian economy is that it has announced that it has based its budget forecast on the assumption of a dollar worth around 90 rubles, thus betting on a weakening of the national currency in the medium term. The draft budget law for 2024-2026 is due to be sent to the State Duma, Russia’s lower house of parliament, on Friday.

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“Ukraine’s Possible New Counteroffensive..”

‘Camouflage’ for Zelensky to ‘Steal More Money From West’ (Sp.)

Kiev’s alleged push for another counteroffensive, this time in the autumn, can be perceived as the West’s red herring, Scott Bennett, a former US Army psychological warfare officer and State Department counter-terrorism analyst, told Sputnik. The Zelensky regime had elaborated a plan for a major offensive in the Kherson and Zaporozhye region in early October, securing the approval of Ukraine’s sponsors in Washington and London, an informed source told Sputnik earlier this week. According to the source, Kiev’s special forces intend to seize control of the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) as part of the blueprint. All this could be Western countries’ red herring, Scott Bennett suggested, pointing to the Ukrainian Army’s futile attempts to break through Russian defensive lines.

“As a result of the resounding defeat of Ukraine, the West is frantically searching for an opportunity to try and escape the coming judgement and potential crimes against humanity charges for the death and destruction the Biden Administration has recklessly unleashed. And the nearest opportunity for distraction may be the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant,” Bennett argued. He recalled that many perceive this facility as “a target for destruction in a kind of ‘doomsday’ button that the US might try and push, in an attempt to generate sufficient chaos and destruction to distract the world away from the small scale battles of Ukraine, to the global implications of a nuclear disaster.” According to the former psychological warfare officer, the potential destruction of the Zaporozhye NPP would be the “ultimate expression” of this chaos.

He warned that if the facility is destroyed, “the resulting tsunami of social, political, economic disruption would disorganize opposition parties and protests against the current political elites in Europe and America, and justify a lockdown or martial law and police state mentality which could be endlessly extended.” Bennett didn’t rule out that “the West will combine its best liars in the CIA, the Mossad, the MI6 to blame the event on Russia, and perhaps also simultaneously initiate some self-inflicted false flag attacks at the same time—such as assassinate Joe Biden and Zelensky at the same time and blame this on Russia in order to justify ‘police action’ and a drafting of Americans into the military for conflict with Russia.”

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Trying to blame the holocaust on Russia. Through insinuation.

Blinken’s ‘History Lesson’ Gets Corrected By X Users (RT)

Users of the social media network X (formerly Twitter) have fact-checked a statement made by United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken in which he said Vladimir Putin’s government “manipulates” the details of massacres in Kiev in 1941 “to provide cover for Russia’s abuses in Ukraine.” “Eighty-two years ago, Nazis murdered 34,000 Jews at Babyn Yar,” Blinken wrote in a Friday post. “Soviets buried this history, which today Putin’s government manipulates to provide cover for Russia’s abuses in Ukraine.” He added that “the US is committed to justice for Holocaust survivors and accountability for atrocities.” Blinken was referring to massacres in the Babyn Yar ravine in present-day Kiev, perpetrated by Nazi Germany’s forces and their local Ukrainian collaborators in late September and October 1941 during its campaign against the Soviet Union.

The first such massacre, which took place on September 29 and 30, saw some 33,771 Jews killed. Other victims of mass killings at the site include Soviet prisoners of war (POWs), communists and Romani. It is estimated that between 100,000 and 150,000 people were murdered at Babyn Yar during the German occupation. The atrocities, which were considered to be extreme even by Nazi Germany’s standards, have been a source of debate in Ukraine over reports of local collaborators being involved. Estimates by historians put at one million the number of Jews killed in what is now Ukraine during the Second World War. As such, X users were quick to point out what they suggested was Blinken’s rather short-sighted recollection of historical events.

“Soviet prisoners of war were among the people massacred at Babyn Yar,” reads a contextual fact-box added by X users to Blinken’s post. “The Soviets liberated Babyn Yar and Kiev in 1943. The Soviets held a trial in 1946 in Kiev for 15 German policemen involved in the Babyn Yar massacres.” In response to Blinken’s statement, Russia’s First Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, Dmitry Polyansky, wrote on X: “I was brought up in the USSR and we all knew about Babyn Yar. Nazi crimes were never ‘buried’ in my country, unlike yours. Writing such a sacrilegious post is beyond any basic notions of decency.” On Friday’s 82nd anniversary of the first Babyn Yar massacre, the Ukrainian foreign ministry issued a statement saying that the event should serve as a reminder to oppose “aggressive-chauvinistic ideologies, in particular, Russian aggression against Ukraine.”

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“..unlike the West which has become quite skilled in organising color revolutions, Moscow does not engage in such activities.”

Nagorno-Karabakh Is No More (Pepe Escobar)

In the end, Nagorno-Karabakh – or the Artsakh Republic – is no more. It will cease to exist on 1 January 2024 – also the first day of the Russian presidency of BRICS 11. All autonomous state structures will be dissolved – according to a decree signed by the head of the Republic, Samvel Shahramanyan. The population – roughly 147,000, 99% of them Armenian Christians – has a choice that’s not really a choice: “familiarize themselves with the conditions of reintegration presented by the Republic of Azerbaijan” and stay, or leave to Armenia for good. Predictably, the exodus is on: an interminable serpent of vehicles congesting the mountain roads of a beautiful landscape where generations of Armenians lived for centuries. As of Thursday night, over 70,000 Armenians had left towards the Syunik region.

The Azeri government in Baku sent police/security forces to Stepanakert. Former Foreign Minister Ruben Vardanyan, an oligarch, was detained by Azeri security while trying to leave for Armenia, mingling with refugees. He had renounced Russian citizenship last year when he moved to work in Artsakh. He’ll probably be freed. Others won’t be so lucky. Everyone leaving is being exhaustively searched. Baku has warned that every Artsakh notable – political and military – will be captured. This is how it sadly ends: the story of how a bunch of crooks – Team Pashinyan in Yerevan – profited personally from a geopolitical pretext. Armenian PM Pashinyan announced that in a few days he’ll consider there are no more Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh. Translation: those that decided to stay will be considered to be Azerbaijanis. Yet for Baku, Armenians from Artsakh will always remain Armenians – and thus an object of suspicion.

[..] As corridors go, Zangezur is the proverbial Chinese win-win. Azerbaijan links with its Nakhitchevan enclave and Turkiye. Russia gets a road that goes through Baku and Yerevan. Armenia opens itself to international trade. And Iran is satisfied that the manager will be the former owner of the place: Russia. Ay, there’s the rub. The usual suspects were not happy that Russian guards would be back in Armenia. So they sabotaged this clause via their agent Pashinyan. The record shows how Team Pashinyan behaved these past few months: Armenia’s First Lady visited Kiev; Yerevan transferred “humanitarian aid” to Ukraine; there were joint military exercises with the U.S.; frantic back and forth by U.S. and EU politicos and NGOs. Relations with Moscow are deteriorating fast. Yerevan – a juicy strategic target – is being taken over by the Hegemon and its vassals. It’s not an accident that Yerevan hosts the second largest American embassy in the world. So only one thing is certain: the Transcaucasus will continue to be on fire.

It’s not clear what will happen to Zangezur – and if and when Pashinyan will act on it. There’s always a – remote – possibility that Pashinyan, egged on by his Western handlers, may try to strike a deal with Aliyev to leave Russia out. The Russian Foreign Ministry has not minced its words, noting how Yerevan “flip flopped on policy and sought Western support over working closely with Russia and Azerbaijan”. And how in meetings in Prague and Brussels under the EU, Pashynian “acknowledged Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity, but failed to address the rights and safety of the Karabakh Armenians.” The Foreign Ministry all but warns Pashynian that “unlike the West which has become quite skilled in organising color revolutions, Moscow does not engage in such activities.”

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People are confused about impeachment. It’s not a one time, one off thing, it’s a process in which truth finding is central. An impeachment inquiry provides more tools for that.

The Proper Way to Impeach: Steve Bannon was Right for the Wrong Reason (Turley)

Yesterday, I spent a very long day testifying in the first hearing of the House impeachment inquiry of President Joe Biden. Not unexpectedly, my testimony angered many on both the left and the right. As I mentioned in my testimony, there is little tolerance for opposing views in this age of rage. Today, caution is considered cowardice and impartiality is viewed as chicanery. Yet our Constitution demands more of each of us at these moments. We can rise to that challenge, as the Framers hoped we would, or we can continue our national descent into rage and ruin. It is the difference between laying the groundwork for a real impeachment or for just another political hit-job.

I was asked to testify on whether the threshold had been met for an impeachment inquiry and what the best practices would be in the investigation of President Biden. I testified that the existing evidence was more than ample to warrant an impeachment inquiry and that these allegations, if proven, would constitute impeachable conduct. That was not enough for many. One of those was Steve Bannon, who went on social media to criticize House Republicans for not selecting someone who would testify, at the very start of an inquiry, that the case already was made for actual articles of impeachment. Bannon suggested that I should have been placed on the “maybe list” if I was not willing to say that the committee had the basis to vote out articles of impeachment on the first day of inquiry.

That, however, would be akin to calling a special grand jury and demanding an indictment before any witnesses or evidence are presented. Bannon’s criticism is emblematic of much of what I cautioned against in my testimony. I implored the Republicans not to replicate the last two impeachments, which I believe did considerable damage to this constitutional process. In the first Trump impeachment, I appeared as the only Republican witness in the only hearing held by the House Judiciary Committee. House Democrats then just cut to the chase and impeached Donald Trump on a thin, undeveloped record.In the second impeachment, they skipped the formalities entirely and went straight to the articles of impeachment in what I called a “snap impeachment.”

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“..He also suggested that Mr. Milley should be executed for his alleged conduct..”

No he did not. He said that: “..in times gone by, the punishment would have been DEATH!”. Not that it should be now.

Federal Prosecutors Want Gag Order Against Trump After His Recent Remarks (ET)

Federal prosecutors have urged the federal judge to impose a gag order on former President Donald Trump in the 2020 election interference case, citing the “prejudicial extrajudicial statements” he made on social media. The special counsel team filed the request for a gag order against Mr. Trump on Sept. 15 to restrict him from making “intimidating” comments about witnesses, lawyers, and other people involved in the criminal case. Prosecutors said on Sept. 25 that Mr. Trump continued to wage “a sustained campaign of prejudicial public statements regarding witnesses, the court, the district, and prosecutors” even after the proposed order.

“The defendant should not be permitted to obtain the benefits of his incendiary public statements and then avoid accountability by having others—whose messages he knows will receive markedly less attention than his own—feign retraction,” they said in a court filing. “No other criminal defendant would be permitted to issue public statements insinuating that a known witness in his case should be executed; this defendant should not be, either,” it added. They referred to recent posts on his social media platform, Truth Social, including one on Sept. 22 in which Mr. Trump accused departing Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley of committing treason. In the post, Mr. Trump said that Mr. Milley’s alleged “treasonous act” could have led to “a war between China and the United States.” He also suggested that Mr. Milley should be executed for his alleged conduct.

Prosecutors also mentioned a video posted by Mr. Trump’s spokesman claiming that Mr. Trump had bought a Glock gun in South Carolina. The post was later removed, and the spokesman retracted his remarks, saying that Mr. Trump had only indicated his interest in buying the gun. Despite the spokesman’s retraction, prosecutors said that Mr. Trump “re-posted a video of the incident” posted by one of his followers with a caption that suggested he had indeed bought the weapon. “The defendant either purchased a gun in violation of the law and his conditions of release, or seeks to benefit from his supporters’ mistaken belief that he did so,” the prosecutors stated. Mr. Trump’s lawyers have objected to the request, and U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan on Friday set courtroom arguments for Oct. 16.

Mr. Trump’s lawyers have previously denounced the gag order request as an attempt to “unconstitutionally silence” his political speech. They called the request a “desperate attempt at censorship.” “The prosecution would silence President Trump, amid a political campaign where his right to criticize the government is at its zenith, all to avoid a public rebuke of this prosecution,” his lawyers wrote on Sept. 25. “However, above all else, the First Amendment means that government has no power to restrict expression because of its message, its ideas, its subject matter, or its content. “The prosecution may not like President’s Trump’s entirely valid criticisms, but neither it nor this Court are the filter for what the public may hear,” they added.

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Why just Steele? And not Clinesmith, Sussman, Adam Schiff, Jerry Nadler, Comey, Hillary Clinton etc etc?!

Trump Sues Christopher Steele Over Hoax Dossier (ZH)

The Steele dossier was used by the Obama DOJ and the intelligence community to smear Trump as a Russian asset. Its various fabrications were legitimized under the guise of a legitimate DOJ investigation, and featured frequent strategic media leaks, ‘expert’ opinions, and manipulated evidence such as an email altered by former FBI attorney Kevin Clinesmith, which was used to renew a wiretap warrant on Trump Campaign adviser Carter Page. Then there was the fraudulent ‘Alfa Bank Server’ allegation made by Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussman, who pleaded guilty to not telling the FBI that he was Hillary’s employee when he alleged that Trump was directly communicating with the Kremlin via a covert server.

Steele peddled the dossier to the State Department – which then passed it along to former FBI deputy assistant director of counterintelligence Peter ‘We’ll stop Trump’ Strzok. Steele also met with the DOJ’s Bruce Ohr (whose wife, as we noted above, Fusion GPS employee), who he told that Russia had Trump “over a barrel.” (Bruce Ohr was consequentially demoted for making “consequential errors in judgement” for failing to inform his supervisors for his role in Russiagate, and retired on Sept. of 2020 “after his counsel was informed that a final decision on a disciplinary review being conducted by Department senior career officials was imminent”). Then there was the infamous ‘pee tape’ allegation that Trump paid prostitutes to urinate in a bed in Moscow where Barack and Michelle Obama had stayed, and that the Kremlin had a tape of the whole thing.

The 35-page dossier was publicly disavowed by high ranking FBI officials, including the bureau’s former deputy director Andrew McCabe, who told lawmakers in November 2020 that he would have never approved the Carter Page wiretap if he’d known the dossier was inaccurate. And now, Trump is suing Steele…

According to the Independent, the 77-year-old former president is bringing a data protection claim against Steele, and his consulting firm Orbis Business Intelligence, in the UK. “Proceedings have been issued on behalf of President Donald J. Trump against Orbis Business Intelligence Limited. The claim relates to breaches of UK Data Protection law arising from the inaccurate processing of the President’s personal data by Orbis following the publication of the false ‘Steele Dossier,’” said Trump attorney Tim Lowles. “The President’s claim seeks remedies including that the inaccurate data contained within the Steele Dossier be erased or rectified together with the payment of damages,” the statement continues.

On October 16, a two-day hearing will commence according to the report, citing a High Court order published Thursday. Steele has defended his work, telling the Oxford Union in March 2022: “What is being called the dossier was actually a series of single-source intelligence reports over a period of time, if you like, almost a running commentary on the election campaign and Russia’s perspective on it — and it comes from the Russian perspective of the telescope if you like,” adding “The sources were Russian, they were reporting on how Russia saw it, and of course, that may in some cases be rather different than how it was viewed in America at the other end of the telescope.”

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Soccer dog
https://twitter.com/i/status/1708198778174345445

 

 

Ink

 

 

Turkey
https://twitter.com/i/status/1708441860228751683

 

 

Bless you
https://twitter.com/i/status/1708396893607465463

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Sep 292023
 
 September 29, 2023  Posted by at 9:00 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  35 Responses »


Rene Magritte Memory 1944

 

Explaining the $18 Million Mar-a-Lago Valuation by NY Trump Case Judge (ET)
Georgia Senate GOP Ousts Senator for Trying to Remove c from Office (BB)
Fulton County DA’s Charges in Trump Case ‘Unnecessary’: CNN Legal Analyst (ET)
Sparks Fly on Day One of US House’s Biden Impeachment Hearing (Sp.)
House Committee Files Subpoena for Hunter, James Biden Bank Records (Sp.)
Turley Testifies at Biden Impeachment Hearing (Turley)
Russia ‘Making A Fortune’ – Trump (RT)
House Removes Ukraine Aid From Defense Spending Bill (Sp.)
West Pays for 70% of Kiev Expenses as Ukraine’s Debt Hits New High (Sp.)
Ukrainian Troops Surrendering En Masse – TASS (RT)
How Long Does It Take to Train an Abrams Crew and Who Will Be Manning Them? (Sp.)
Ukraine Dependence on NATO Intel Further Embroiling West in Conflict (Sp.)
America Needs Regime Change – John Rachel (Cunningham)
The Rape of Europa (Pepe Escobar)
Canada Must Face Up To Nazi Legacy – Immigration Minister (RT)

 

 

 

 

Timmons

 

 

This is truly shocking. Watch out.

 

 

 

 

MEP

Abrams

 

 

 

 

Putin history
https://twitter.com/i/status/1707357385012998186

 

 

 

 

McCarthy
https://twitter.com/i/status/1707043471494647926

Miyazawa

 

 

 

 

The judge cherry-picked the lowest appraisal and used that to accuse Trump of fraud.

“Valuing Mar-a-Lago at $425 million–$612 million was “appropriate and indeed conservative,” Mr. Moens told the court. The property is currently worth $1.51 billion, he opined.”

Explaining the $18 Million Mar-a-Lago Valuation by NY Trump Case Judge (ET)

Former President Donald Trump and two of his sons have criticized a New York judge for suggesting his Mar-a-Lago Palm Beach resort is worth between $18–28 million. “If Mar-a-Lago is worth $18 million … I’ll take 10 please!!!” Donald Trump Jr., an executive vice president of Trump Organization, wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter. Judge Arthur Engoron implied the market value of the property in a Sept. 26 summary ruling that found President Trump’s business empire liable for fraudulently inflating property values in loan paperwork. He revoked the Trump Organization’s business licenses in the state and ordered it dissolved. President Trump’s lawyers argued that the banks providing the loans didn’t care about the valuations produced by the company because they do their own.

All the loans have or are being properly repaid with interest, they noted. The judge ruled, however, that under New York law the state can sue for inflated property values even if nobody was harmed by them. Mar-a-Lago was overvalued by “at least 2,300%” because the Palm Beach County Assessor assigned it a market value of $18 million to $27.6 million between 2011–2021, while the Trump Organization valued it at $426,529,614–$612,110,496 on its Statements of Financial Condition (SFC) in those same years, the judge said There are problems with using either of the valuations. The county’s website says that “the estimate of Total Market Value is for tax assessment purposes only” and “the Total Market Value estimate may be less than the actual market value of the property.”

Meanwhile, the SFCs include a disclaimer that the asset values are “determined by Mr. Trump in conjunction with his associates and, in some instances, outside professionals” and “the estimates presented herein are not necessarily indicative of the amount that could be realized upon the disposition of the assets or payment of the related liabilities.” President Trump referred to the disclaimer as a “worthless clause,” saying it indicated to him that the documents were more an enumeration of his assets, rather than their actual market valuation. The judge rejected that reasoning, arguing the disclaimer is itself “worthless” as a defense because it “does not use the words ‘worthless’ or ‘useless’ or ‘ignore’ or ‘disregard’ or any similar words.” The actual market value of Mar-a-Lago is unclear.

President Trump’s lawyers presented a real estate expert, Lawrence Moens, “who they purport is ‘the most accomplished and knowledgeable ultra-high net worth real estate broker in Palm Beach, Florida,’” the judge said. “His dominance of one of the country’s richest real estate markets is total,” a 2022 Real Deal profile of the secretive realtor said, noting that he closed perhaps $1 billion worth of deals in just the 18 months of the COVID-19 pandemic real estate mania. Valuing Mar-a-Lago at $425 million–$612 million was “appropriate and indeed conservative,” Mr. Moens told the court. The property is currently worth $1.51 billion, he opined. The judge rejected the opinion as “speculative” and made as “without relying on any objective evidence.” The property isn’t currently for sale and the family has indicated it doesn’t plan to ever sell it, according to the Trump family.

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Kemp and State Senate Republicans apparently oppose working to investigate, defund, and impeach Willis, and instead ousted Moore..”

Georgia Senate GOP Ousts Senator for Trying to Remove Fani Willis from Office (BB)

The Georgia Senate Republican caucus voted on Thursday to remove State Sen. Colton Moore from the caucus for taking a first step in August to defund, investigate, and possibly impeach Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, who levied 13 counts against former President Donald Trump. In a letter to Gov. Brian Kemp (R), Moore announced an initiative in August to begin an emergency session to conduct a thorough investigation into the actions undertaken by Willis. An emergency legislative special session can come about two ways in Georgia: The governor can call an emergency session, or one can be called if 3/5 of both legislative chambers sign a letter demanding it.

Kemp and State Senate Republicans apparently oppose working to investigate, defund, and impeach Willis, and instead ousted Moore. “Today’s removal is a direct result of me calling on my Republican colleagues in the Senate to do their job and sign onto an emergency session to investigate Fani Willis,” Colton said in a statement exclusively obtained by Breitbart News: The Georgia Constitution clearly outlines the legislature’s power to call an emergency session to investigate a judicial officer. After urging my Republican Senate colleagues to join me — they responded by acting like children and throwing me out of the caucus.

I stand by my Republican principles. I stand by the Republican platform. I will continue to serve as a Republican Senator from the great state of Georgia. Unfortunately, now I will be forced to refer to my colleagues, who ran on being “Trump conservatives,” as the RINO caucus. The people of Georgia are 100 percent with me. This is the fight of our lifetime, and I will continue to double down to defend the rule of law and do what is right. Recent Rasmussen polling shows that 82 percent of Georgia Republicans say Trump is unfairly prosecuted by Willis. Seventy-seven percent of Republicans also say they are not satisfied with tax dollars being used to prosecute Trump. Another 74 percent of Republicans support the Georgia legislature convening a special session to stop Willis from prosecuting Trump.

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“If that’s the only goal, all seven states: Michigan, New Mexico, and on down the line, should be charging him too, but that would be ludicrous..s”

Fulton County DA’s Charges in Trump Case ‘Unnecessary’: CNN Legal Analyst (ET)

A prominent media analyst and former prosecutor suggested this week that the charges made by the district attorney in Fulton County, Georgia, against former President Donald Trump under the state’s racketeering law are “unnecessary” and only add to Mr. Trump’s allegations of a “Democratic Party pile on.” Elie Honig, a former federal prosecutor and now a media legal analyst, told a podcast this week that federal special counsel Jack Smith already charged the former president with alleged election-related offenses “and in seven states in particular, including Georgia.” Notably, Mr. Honig, a former assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, has been publicly critical of the former president, and he is now a senior legal analyst for CNN.

He’s also penned a critical book about former Trump Attorney General William Barr called “Hatchet Man.” He asked whether Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis’ indictment is for the “greater good and why is it promoting public confidence in the fairness of this [process] to have one of those seven state prosecutors pile on with a charge of her own? I don’t think it serves any greater good,” he stated, adding that Ms. Willis indicted him on partisan grounds. “I disagree with the exercise of prosecutorial discretion by an elected county prosecutor, a partisan, with a D next to her name,” he said, referring to the Democratic Party. There are differences between the Georgia and the federal election cases, he then claimed, saying they essentially serve the same purpose.

“I think it makes Trump’s chances of being convicted and punished higher if that’s the only goal here. If that’s the only goal, all seven states: Michigan, New Mexico, and on down the line, should be charging him too, but that would be ludicrous,” the former prosecutor said. Last month, the Fulton County District Attorney’s office indicted President Trump and 18 co-defendants under Georgia’s expansive anti-racketeering law, claiming that he and the others engaged in efforts to illegally overturn the 2020 election results in the state. All have pleaded not guilty and some defendants have attempted to get their charges thrown out.

Federal Judge Steve Jones last week rejected the attempt by Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows to move his case to federal court and sent it back to state court, but Meadows is appealing that ruling. The four others who have already filed notice to move their cases have hearings before Jones scheduled for next week. It came after a Fulton County grand jury last month accused them of participating in an illegal scheme to keep the incumbent Republican president in power after the election against President Joe Biden. Republicans in her state and in Congress have accused Ms. Willis’s office of engaging in a politically motivated attack on the former president as he ramps up his 2024 presidential campaign as the leading GOP candidate.

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Well, they didn’t fly very high then…

Sparks Fly on Day One of US House’s Biden Impeachment Hearing (Sp.)

Members of the House of Representatives convened in the nation’s capital Thursday for day one of impeachment hearings against US President Joe Biden. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy initiated the inquiry last week after a monthslong campaign from conservative Republicans, but Democrats have dismissed the hearings as a political stunt. Sputnik has summarized and contextualized some of the key claims from today’s proceedings to help separate fact from fiction and innuendo from actuality. A combative atmosphere prevailed throughout the proceedings, with Democrats questioning the very basis for the inquiry. Early on in the day, Democratic representatives held up large placards featuring quotes from various Republicans casting an unflattering light on Speaker McCarthy’s management of the chamber’s Republican majority.

“These folks don’t have a plan,” read one sign quoting Rep. Mike Lawler (R-NY) blasting Republican Freedom Caucus members who insisted on the hearing. “This is a whole new concept of individuals that just want to burn the whole place down,” read another quoting McCarthy. “It’s hard to grasp the complete derangement of this moment,” proclaimed Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD), the highest-ranking Democrat on the House’s oversight committee, calling the inquiry a “baseless impeachment drive against President Biden.” Republicans were equally feisty, if not more so. Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) adopted Trumpian language when she proclaimed Democratic attempts to exonerate President Biden were “complete and total bullshit.” “Hunter Biden referred to access to his father as the keys to his ‘family’s only asset,’” said Mace. “Those words are going to come back and haunt Hunter Biden and his family forever.”

Republicans have pointed to exotic financial arrangements on the part of the Biden family, including the establishment of over 20 shell companies to manage income. Although his family’s accounting maneuvers may seem alien to most Americans of average means, observers point out the GOP has not yet uncovered smoking gun evidence of any crime by Biden. Republicans’ own witnesses admitted as much. “I am not here today to even suggest that there was corruption, fraud or wrongdoing,” said Bruce Dubinsky, a forensic accountant and founder of Dubinsky Consulting. “More information needs to be gathered before I can make such an assessment.” “I do not believe that the current evidence would support articles of impeachment,” said Jonathan Turley, a noted legal analyst and professor at George Washington University Law School. “That is something that an inquiry has to establish.”

Byron Donalds

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“..the Bidens and their associates established more than 20 shell companies, amassing more than $24 million from sources in China and other countries..”

House Committee Files Subpoena for Hunter, James Biden Bank Records (Sp.)

The US House Oversight Committee said in a news release that Chairman James Comer issued subpoenas for President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, and his brother James Biden seeking to obtain their personal and business records. “As part of the impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden, House Committee on Oversight and Accountability Chairman James Comer (R-KY) today issued three subpoenas for Hunter and James Biden’s personal and business bank records,” the committee said. According to copies of the subpoenas, the panel is giving Hunter and James Biden until October 12 to provide the requested documents or they may risk facing criminal contempt of Congress charges. The Oversight Committee has disclosed since January that the Bidens and their associates established more than 20 shell companies, amassing more than $24 million from sources in China and other countries.

The investigation also identified nine Biden family members linked to these business operations and affirmed the president interacted with the business affiliates on at least 24 occasions. Thursday was the first day of impeachment inquiry hearings against the president. During the GOP-led House Oversight Committee hearing, Congressman James Comer announced his intention to subpoena the bank records of President Joe Biden’s son and brother, Hunter and James, as well as the records of their affiliated companies. “What we need to understand is where it [the money] goes next. That is the question this committee seeks to answer and the evidence supports that next step,” Comer said at the time. Citing bank records, the House Oversight Committee earlier revealed that Hunter in 2019 received two payments wired from China totaling $260,000 with President Biden’s Delaware home listed as the beneficiary address.

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“If we want to combat the deterioration of political discourse in our society, it begins here and now as we discuss these issues..”

Turley Testifies at Biden Impeachment Hearing (Turley)

As a law professor, there is no more solemn responsibility than advising the House in an impeachment. I come to this question as someone who has served both as lead counsel in the last judicial impeachment trial in the United States Senate and testified in two prior presidential impeachments. Roughly, twenty-five years ago, I appeared before Congress as an expert witness in the impeachment of former president William Jefferson Clinton. Four years ago, I appeared as an expert witness in the only impeachment hearing held in the first impeachment of former president Donald J. Trump. In the second impeachment just roughly three years ago, there was no hearing at all.

The shortening intervals between impeachments is alarming and calls for circumspection and caution on both sides. My testimony addresses the historical baseline of past inquiries and what I consider to be “best practices” in the investigation of a sitting president. Some of those practices and presumptions work to the benefit of the President. That is as it should be. A presidential impeachment should not be a close question or a rush to judgment. Finally, I encourage members to consider the common article of faith in this constitutional process and to rise above the petty and personal attacks that characterize these times:

“There are constitutional moments that demand the best from each of us in transcending the passions and politics of time. These are moments when people of good faith can bring a solemnity and clarity to a national debate. We are living an age of rage where ad hominem attacks have replaced civil discourse. This toxic environment starts here with how members treat different views of our constitutional history and standards. As Justice Louis Brandeis stated “Our government is the potent, the omnipresent teacher. For good or for ill it teaches the whole people by example.”

While Brandeis was speaking of criminal conduct, it is equally true of our public discourse. The license that some feel to engage in hateful rhetoric and personal attacks are the result of how members treat this moment. We can discuss these issues as Americans who may disagree but remain bound by a common faith in our constitutional system. We can disagree, but we need not hate each other. If we want to combat the deterioration of political discourse in our society, it begins here and now as we discuss these issues. Members can choose to be either potent teachers for civil discourse or political rage. I hope that this testimony will assist the Committee in offering the public an array of different viewpoints on how an impeachment inquiry should ideally progress under Article I.”

https://twitter.com/i/status/1707456453265555733

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“The shift to EV will kill jobs at America’s biggest carmakers and eventually make them obsolete, Trump warned. “For auto workers, Biden’s transition to electric is a transition to hell..”

Russia ‘Making A Fortune’ – Trump (RT)

Soaring energy prices have boosted Russia’s revenues, while the US is facing major economic threats due to its transition to clean energy, former President Donald Trump claimed on Wednesday. Addressing supporters at Drake Enterprises, a non-union auto parts manufacturer near Detroit, Trump condemned the administration of President Joe Biden for its policies on electric vehicles (EV) and clean energy, branding them a danger to the US auto industry. The shift to EV will kill jobs at America’s biggest carmakers and eventually make them obsolete, Trump warned. “For auto workers, Biden’s transition to electric is a transition to hell,” the former president declared. “A transition to unemployment.”

According to Trump, the US was “more energy-independent” than Russia and China during his tenure as president, while now “we are begging countries to give us gasoline.” “We are going to lose our country,” Trump warned, arguing that Moscow has “made a fortune” and continues to benefit from high oil prices. Global oil prices have surged by 30% since June after voluntary production cuts by OPEC and allies led by Russia. On Thursday, prices reached their highest level in over a year, with benchmark Brent rising above $97 a barrel. US West Texas Intermediate futures touched $95 per barrel, marking the highest price since August 2022. Experts predict that prices will remain high for the rest of the year.

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“All 117 votes against the bill came from Republican members, but 101 Republicans joined all Democrats in supporting the measure..”

House Removes Ukraine Aid From Defense Spending Bill (Sp.)

GOP leaders have stripped Ukraine funding from a defense spending bill, in a move that came amid two separate votes. The House not only approved the 2024 Defense Department spending bill of $826 billion, but also passed another bill with a 311-117 vote on Thursday night. This separate bill aims to allocate a generous sum of $300 million to enhance security assistance for Ukraine. Included in the 2024 Defense Department spending legislation is an additional document that arranges $20 million for the establishment of a new Special Inspector General for Ukraine Assistance office to thoroughly review and conduct aid audits. All 117 votes against the bill came from Republican members, but 101 Republicans joined all Democrats in supporting the measure. The bills now move to the Senate for consideration.

Republican Senator Marjorie Taylor Greene commented on the developments, tweeting that “for weeks” she has been “calling for taxpayer funding for Ukraine to be removed from OUR [US] appropriations bills.” “On Tuesday, I protested on the steps of the Capitol. Tonight the House answered my call, we successfully voted to strip $300 million to Ukraine from the Defense Appropriations Act. This is a victory for the American people and for peace,” Greene added. Following House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s recent statement to the press, where he expressed his intent to remove the $300 million from the defense bill and schedule a separate vote specifically for the funding, the remarks were made. Shortly after, however, he backtracked by claiming that it would be “too difficult” to remove the Ukraine aid from the Department of Defense legislation. These developments unfold amid reports of an increasingly likely US government shutdown that could occur as early as October 1, temporarily furloughing thousands of non-essential federal workers.

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“Long-shot hopes of entry into the European Union to get access to hundreds of billions of euros in loans and subsidies..”

West Pays for 70% of Kiev Expenses as Ukraine’s Debt Hits New High (Sp.)

Ukraine’s Ministry of Finance revealed on Thursday that the nation’s national debt levels had grown by another billion dollars and reached a historically-unprecedented $133.93 billion, equivalent to more than 84 percent of the country’s projected 2023 GDP. Emerging from the rubble of the USSR in 1991 with a debt of $0, Kiev’ staggering obligations today are the result of successive governments’ liberal borrowing policies, including of cash loaned by the IMF in exchange for economic reforms, and the year-and-a-half long NATO proxy conflict with Russia. Debt ballooned by some $77 billion since the start of 2022 alone, with Kiev’s Western partners ignoring requests to write it off.

Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Nikolai Azarov recently predicted that the country’s debt may reach $173 billion (107 percent of GDP) by the end of the year, while the IMF expects this to occur only in 2025. The Zelensky government recently began brainstorming new ways to collect cash to try to put a dent in next year’s predicted $40 billion deficit amid hikes in defense spending, and as money owed to Western vulture funds including BlackRock and Fidelity come due, with proposals including selling government bonds to foreigners.

Long-shot hopes of entry into the European Union to get access to hundreds of billions of euros in loans and subsidies also prevail, although European Parliament President Roberta Metsola warned this week that the EU’s economy wouldn’t be able to survive another enlargement. As Kiev’s financial troubles mount, a growing number of officials from the country’s top patron, the United States, are becoming increasingly weary of the idea of continuing to prop up the nation’s economy, particularly amid a steady stream of scandals of corrupt Ukrainian officials purchasing fleets of luxury cars, and reports of US aid sponsoring everything from Ukrainian designer knitwear companies to private equity firms that don’t even have anything to do with Ukraine, as Americans feel the squeeze of inflation, spiking energy costs and a debt crisis threatening to shut down the government.

The Biden administration has asked Congress to authorize an additional $24 billion in assistance to Ukraine, including $13 billion in military aid. However, GOP fiscal conservatives in Congress and some presidential candidates have sought to stop or at least reduce further assistance, so far to no avail. “I don’t know who can keep track of these figures anymore,” Dr. Nicolai Petro, an international politics professor at the University of Rhode Island, told Sputnik, commenting on the current battle in Congress over additional Ukraine aid.

Reznikov
https://twitter.com/i/status/1707364711497408738

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“..using a special radio frequency designed for fighters willing to lay down arms..”

Ukrainian Troops Surrendering En Masse – TASS (RT)

Large numbers of Ukrainian troops have surrendered to the Russian military in recent weeks, using a special radio frequency designed for fighters willing to lay down arms, TASS reported on Wednesday. The frequency, 149.200 call sign ‘Volga’, was set up by the Russian military during the summer. Thus far, it has been used by more than 10,000 Ukrainian servicemen who were subsequently taken into Russian custody, according to a source with knowledge of the situation cited by TASS. The person added that the radio frequency is active along the entire front line. “More than 10,0000 Ukrainian soldiers have chosen life and used the 149.200 ‘Volga’ frequency to surrender. The prisoners are well-fed and are provided with all the necessary medical care,” the source stated. The process has seemingly accelerated recently as Ukrainian troops have surrendered in groups rather than individually, particularly around Rabotino, according to the TASS source.

The village in Zaporozhye Region has become the scene of intense fighting between Russian and Ukrainian forces in recent weeks. Rabotino remains one of the major flashpoints of the conflict, with the area repeatedly subjected to attacks during the long-heralded Ukrainian counteroffensive launched in early June. The push has thus far failed to yield any tangible results, while reports have indicated that Ukrainian forces are sustaining heavy personnel and materiel losses in the process. According to Moscow’s latest estimates, Kiev has lost more than 17,000 servicemen this month alone. The total number of Ukrainian troops killed since the counteroffensive began has now surpassed 83,000, with over 10,000 pieces of heavy military hardware also destroyed, according to the Russian military.

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“It’s supposed to be eight months of training, but they want to do it in 12 weeks – three months. This is something out of the realm of fantasy..”

How Long Does It Take to Train an Abrams Crew and Who Will Be Manning Them? (Sp.)

The delivery of the first batch of American-made M1 Abrams to Ukraine has been met with a flurry of expert opinion on just what impact the tanks will have on the battlefield, with military experts from both Russia and Western countries pointing to numerous problems with the armored juggernauts, from their weight, size and complexity, to the ubiquitous threat of Russian drones, airpower, artillery and tanks. Speaking to French media this week, former Leclerc battalion commander Yann Boivin pointed to the Abrams’ finicky nature, emphasizing that the tanks could quickly turn into 70-ton armored coffins if not maintained properly and in a timely fashion. “The real drawback of the American tank is the high level of maintenance and logistics required.

Servicing turbine engines requires a far better trained personnel than servicing diesel ones,” the French officer warned. Issues with seals in ammunition chambers, and their vulnerability to enemy fire, are two more major problems, Boivin said General Mark Hertling, a decorated Gulf and Iraq War veteran and former commander of United States Army Europe, warned that if the Abrams’ engines are used improperly, the tanks could simply explode.Ukraine’s 31 Abrams have been modified and downgraded from the ones operated by the US Army, refurbished and rebuilt from the ground up, with their secrecy-laden Chobham composite ceramic, steel, and depleted uranium-laced armor swapped out, presumably due to fears that Russia might capture the tanks and drag them back behind Russian lines to hand them over to military engineers. ]

Russian social media is already flooded with videos and photos of trophy Leopards, Bradleys, and other advanced Western military hardware seized by the Russian military, so the probability of Abrams falling into Russian hands is not insignificant – if they’re ever deployed on the battlefield, that is. Training is another problem, with US media reporting this week that NATO countries’ crash course approach to instructing Ukrainian servicemen to operate alliance equipment has led to poor maintenance, a higher-than-expected incidence of breakdowns, and malfunctioning of heavy weapons’ onboard systems. About 200 Ukrainian tankers are reported to have received 10-12 weeks of training to operate and repair Abrams, far below the 22 weeks the US Army takes to train a crewman, and the up to 34 weeks to teach a maintenance operator to repair the complex tanks.

In the US military, becoming an Abrams repairman requires applicants to score within the top 99th percentile of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test, or the top 88th percentile of the Mechanical Maintenance and 92nd percentile of the General Technical test. Whether and how these issues have been addressed for Ukraine’s tankmen is unclear. “It’s supposed to be eight months of training, but they want to do it in 12 weeks – three months. This is something out of the realm of fantasy,” Viktor Litovkin, a retired Russian Army colonel and veteran military observer specializing in tanks, told Sputnik, when asked just how realistic it is to train an Abrams tanker in such a short time frame.

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“..collecting intelligence is part of carrying out an armed conflict which makes the US, the UK and others participants in this conflict already.”

Ukraine Dependence on NATO Intel Further Embroiling West in Conflict (Sp.)

With the failure of its summer counteroffensive, the Kiev regime is stepping up revenge attacks on high-profile targets in Russia’s Crimea and other regions — with help from NATO. Former US Marine, independent geopolitical researcher and writer Brian Berletic has warned that the West was sailing dangerously close to the wind. NATO members are drawing dangerously close to direct involvement in the Ukraine conflict, a former US Marine told Sputnik, noting that when it came to the military bloc’s stand-off approach to hostilities, “the ten foot pole is now two feet long.” “We saw this all throughout the US proxy war in Syria until they ended up invading Syria themselves, occupying the eastern part of the country east of the Euphrates River,” independent journalist and commentator Brian Berletic said.

“And they continued participating in the hostilities, which included against Russia in a more or less indirect way. But they did get closer and closer to direct confrontation, and there were some close calls.” The webcast presenter said the same situation was now playing out in Ukraine, where last Friday’s attack on the headquarters building of the Russian Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol were carried out with British and French-supplied cruise missiles — allegedly guided by US surveillance aircraft flying off the Romanian coast. The Ukrainian armed forces “don’t have their own satellites. They don’t have their own long range intelligence gathering capabilities,” Berletic pointed out. “They have throughout the entirety of this conflict depended on the West for intelligence — and collecting intelligence is part of carrying out an armed conflict which makes the US, the UK and others participants in this conflict already.”

He warned that NATO was “creeping even further into direct conflict with Russia,” a situation he called “very dangerous.” “The West trying to goad Russia into some sort of escalation,” Berletic said, “because you can see how disinterested the general West is in this conflict.” He cited the ongoing international scandal after the Canadian parliament gave two standing ovations to 98-year-old Yaroslav Hunka, an immigrant from Ukraine who fought for the Nazis in the Second World War as part of the 14th Waffen SS Grenadier Division, during a visit by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. “People are growing tired of this, and the West needs something extreme to stir everyone up and galvanize them to supercharge this, to give them the political capital they need to escalate,” Berletic said, because “Russia has more or less won this.” Those who are aware of NATO’s push to escalate the conflict are “increasingly appalled” by them, he said.

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“The entire U.S. capitalist economy needs to be demilitarized..”

America Needs Regime Change – John Rachel (Cunningham)

Author and writer John Rachel warns in this interview that the United States needs to undergo regime change if the country is to have any chance of restoring its democracy. Not only for restoring democracy and a decent society for the majority of its people but also for adhering to peaceful diplomatic relations and avoiding a nuclear world war with Russia and China. This urgent need for regime change in the United States has been building for decades, as John Rachel explains in his latest book, Electing a Kennedy Congress. The great irony is that the U.S. establishment has for decades been engaging in illegal regime change around the world, sabotaging countless other nations and sowing chaos and violence. The people of the U.S. need their own regime change to get rid of the imperialist national security state.

The U.S. political system has become endemically corrupted by powerful corporate dominance over the White House and Congress (and media). Both the Democratic and Republican parties have become “the War Party” whose politicians are bought and sold by corporate power. Believing that one political figure can deliver the necessary change is a futile aspiration. The necessary change must be systemic involving mass mobilization of people and radical overhaul of the Congressional members as well as the future occupant of the White House. The entire U.S. capitalist economy needs to be demilitarized. That means challenging the very essence of the U.S. power structure. And that is what makes democratic change in the U.S. so dangerous and fraught with difficulty. The vested power structure is determined to prevail over any challenge… even to the point of assassinating anyone who threatens it. It really is a horrific reflection on the barbaric nature of U.S. politics and power.

Robert Kennedy Jr. is only an initial sign of what is fully needed, says Rachel. Getting behind Kennedy could be a way to mobilize people and to confront the systemic corruption. However, Rachel warns of the constant pitfall of a “sellout” as with previous figures like Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump. Preventing a sellout requires a critical mass of people and a Congress of new members who also share the vision of radical overhaul. The overhaul must be centered on meeting the needs of ordinary people and workers (the majority), such as decent jobs, education, healthcare and housing. Meeting such needs is what a democracy should do, by definition. But meeting such needs is incompatible with trillion-dollar military budgets and endless wars. In short, it is either democracy or imperialism. That is the stark choice.

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“The remixed Rape of Europa comes complete with ancillary financial bulls BlackRock, Vanguard and State Street totally controlling the spot market for anything the EU wants to buy..”

The Rape of Europa (Pepe Escobar)

The abuse of Europe is never-ending. In geoeconomics, German industrial exports – which were a key factor in its positive balance of payments – are going down the drain. Germany and assorted EU nations are now dependent on ultra-costly American LNG. An enslaved EU was forced by the American “ally” to simply give up on the Russian market for its own auto and other exports that paid for cheap energy imports. In a matter of months, balanced trade Looking East was turned into deficit trade with the Hegemon. That is the key legacy of the tactical victory obtained by the Hegemon with the bombing of Nord Stream 1 and 2 – exactly a year ago. Seymour Hersh’s sources inside the U.S. Deep State revealed who did it. The whole Global Majority with an IQ over room temperature knows who did it – and who ordered it. And still the current Straussian neo-con psychos controlling U.S. foreign policy are able to get away with it.

The bombing of the Nord Streams was the Rape of Europe Remixed – now performed by an American bull. As the indispensable Michael Hudson has detailed, domestic budgets of Germany and other EU/NATO nations are already in deficit territory – with the added “incentive” of the non-stop militarization of the EU. That will “force cutbacks in domestic government programs – just as Germany and its NATO neighbors are moving into a post-industrial depression in which families and businesses need subsidies to cover their rising heating and energy costs, and unemployment insurance.” Moreover, the euro will continue to plunge against the U.S. dollar, and may soon fall to 90 cents, or lower. Prof. Hudson’s conclusion is stark: “So what seemed to be a U.S./NATO war against Russia in Ukraine has been a stunning U.S. military victory to lock European NATO members into the U.S. orbit and block their plan to turn East for trade and investment with Russia and China.”

Meanwhile, the Hegemon is making a killing – literally – with its proxy war in Ukraine. The basics: over half of agro-Ukraine is now owned by Monsanto, Cargill and Dupont, bought for a pittance and profiting from the most corrupt environment in any country in the world. Ukraine seeds were destroyed: Monsanto now runs the whole GMO racket. Ukraine cereals going to raped Europa equal full control of the EU’s agriculture and food market. On the military front, the U.S. weapons matrix and its satellites continue to profit immensely from what is in effect money laundering of public funds. Ukraine simultaneously became: 1. The graveyard for outdated weapons in need of recycling. 2. A privileged “laboratory for military innovation” (like Afghanistan and Iraq, previously) – as admitted by the Pentagon’s number two, Mara Carlin, at the Ronald Reagan University. 3. A show room for global exports (well, Abrams tanks about to be incinerated by the Russians don’t exactly qualify as a strong selling point).

On the energy front, it’s all about the Nord Streams, all over again. The remixed Rape of Europa comes complete with ancillary financial bulls BlackRock, Vanguard and State Street totally controlling the spot market for anything the EU wants to buy, with prices occasionally 20 times higher than before. This is just the short version of what “helping Ukraine” is really about.And still the wunderwaffen keep coming: F16s are next in line. Andrei Martyanov summed it all up, concisely: “The combined West failed at war”. As in NATO’s utter humiliation will be cosmic. And that comes with a – possible – punchline – for which obviously one cannot have direct confirmation in the corridors of power in Moscow: “Russians did plan for that, they just couldn’t anticipate that the West would self-annihilate itself that fast”.

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“There was a point in our history where it was easier to get in as a Nazi than it was as a Jewish person. I think that’s a history we have to reconcile.”

Canada Must Face Up To Nazi Legacy – Immigration Minister (RT)

Canada may declassify records of Nazi war criminals admitted to the country after the Second World War, Immigration Minister Marc Miller said on Wednesday. Canada’s liberal government is currently mired in controversy over the veneration of a Ukrainian veteran of the Waffen SS in parliament last week. “Canada has a really dark history with Nazis,” Miller told the National Post. “There was a point in our history where it was easier to get in as a Nazi than it was as a Jewish person. I think that’s a history we have to reconcile.” A report commissioned by the Canadian government in 1985 found that there were almost 900 Nazi soldiers, scientists, and their associates living in Canada at the time, including around 600 members of the 14th Waffen Grenadier Division of the SS.

Also known as the First Ukrainian or First Galician Division, this unit was formed in 1943 and staffed by Ukrainian volunteers, and is known to have committed atrocities against Jews and Poles during its campaign against the Soviet Union. The report recommended that individual members of the division not be prosecuted for their unit’s war crimes. It also stated that members of the division should not be deported, as “Canadian authorities were fully aware” of their wartime activities when they entered the country after the conflict. The Simon Wiesenthal Center, a Jewish organization that tracks down fugitive Nazis, claimed in 1997 that the true number of war criminals hiding in Canada was closer to 3,000 than 900. While Jewish immigrants were detained as “enemy aliens,” Nazis could freely enter Canada “by showing the SS tattoo,” historian Irving Abella told ‘60 Minutes’ in 1997, explaining that this distinguishing mark proved that its bearer had served in the elite outfit and was a committed “anti-Communist.”

Miller, a member of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party, suggested that the government could declassify the names of Nazis known to have entered Canada after the war. Justice Minister Arif Virani, however, refused to say whether he backs this idea. Instead, he told the National Post that Canadian war crimes investigators should only prosecute those who committed “crimes like genocide.” Canada’s relationship with the Third Reich made international news last Friday when 98-year-old Yaroslav Hunka, a veteran of the First Ukrainian Division, was invited to a meeting of parliament with Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky and given a standing ovation. House Speaker Anthony Rota, who invited Hunka to the event and introduced him as “a Ukrainian hero, a Canadian hero… who fought for Ukrainian independence against the Russians,” resigned on Tuesday, and Trudeau offered “unreserved apologies” on Wednesday for applauding the Nazi veteran.

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Mama chimp
https://twitter.com/i/status/1707216268384784782

 

 

Shimmering

 

 

Young elephant

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Sep 202023
 
 September 20, 2023  Posted by at 8:52 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  45 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Femme 1930

 

We Can No Longer Hide the Truth About the Russia-Ukraine War (Newsweek)
NYT Exposes Zelensky Lie About Donbass Missile Strike (RT)
NYT Spreading ‘Conspiracy Theories’ On Ukrainian Missile Strike – Podoliak (RT)
Zelensky’s US Visit a ‘Dog & Pony Show’ to Plug Cracks in Ukraine Support (Sp.)
EU Seeking Something Russian To Sanction – Bloomberg (RT)
Russia, North Korea Stage ‘Strategic Coup’ Against Western Hegemony (Pepe Escobar)
Biden Repeats ‘Unforgivable’ Remark About Putin (RT)
Putin Behind EU Migrant Crisis – Polish Diplomat (RT)
Kremlin Calls on Armenia and Azerbaijan to Adhere to Trilateral Agreements (Sp.)
The West Destroyed Africa, Eurasia Will Revive It (Ehret)
California Lawmakers Push for Ruling on Booting Trump From State Primary Ballot (Sp.)
House Republicans Set Date for 1st Biden Impeachment Hearing (ET)
McCarthy Delays Vote on 30-Day Funding Resolution as Gov’t Shutdown Nears (Sp.)
COVID-19 Vaccines Revealed as ‘Neither Safe, Nor Effective’: Watchdog (ET)

 

 

 

 

RFK The Wages of War

 

 

ComicDaveSmith
https://twitter.com/i/status/1703848329111654622

 

 

 

 

Brand voting machines
https://twitter.com/i/status/1703850642115280986

Russell

 

 

 

 

Aaron Siri

 

 

 

 

In the same day, two US MSM publications, Newsweek and NYT, go against what has so far been the official view on Ukraine. As Zelensky is in Washington/NYC. That can’t be a coincidence.

First, a Newsweek piece authored by “Daniel L. Davis , Senior Fellow, Defense Priorities”. Apart from admitting that Ukraine is screwed, he has some numbers that made me think:

“Ukraine was reported to have lost 17,500 troops in the first year of the war..”

That appears to be a official US number. Col. Macgregor estimated some 20x more for the first year. Then came the “spring offensive”:

“.. it is presently assessed to have lost a breathtakingly high 50,000 additional deaths, for a total of 70,000 dead and 120,000 wounded..”

So in 3 months, they had 3 times more deaths than in the entire first year, which included the Bakhmut meat grinder. And you think: maybe he just doesn’t know, this “senior fellow”. But then he comes with:

“Rather than repeating over the next year and a half what has already not worked—potentially costing Ukraine yet additional hundreds of thousands of losses..”

And I thought: he does know. He goes from “breathtakingly high 50,000 additional deaths” to “additional hundreds of thousands of losses”. It’s in the way he phrases it.

We Can No Longer Hide the Truth About the Russia-Ukraine War (Newsweek)

As leading American politicians, generals, and pundits continue advocating for open-ended support to Kyiv in their war against Russia, a sober, accurate analysis of Ukraine’s nearly completed summer offensive reveals that the heroic sacrifice Ukraine continues to make is producing little to no meaningful progress toward the objective of evicting Russia from Ukraine’s territory. Washington should instead employ a necessary course correction and form a new policy, based on the harsh, ground-truth combat realities in Ukraine. Revising the objectives would give Washington and Kyiv a chance to preserve Ukrainian lives and American interests. Washington’s current policies do neither. Despite great hopes for a rapid success, Ukraine’s months-in-the-making offensive has sputtered from the outset.

That shouldn’t have surprised anyone in the White House. On April 5, two months before the start of the offensive, I wrote that “Zelensky’s troops—with little to no air power and a dearth in artillery ammunition—could suffer egregious casualties while gaining little.” Five days later, The Washington Post revealed the contents of a leaked Top Secret U.S. intelligence assessment which likewise predicted the Ukrainian offensive would probably fall “well short” of expectations, and that “enduring Ukrainian deficiencies in training and munitions supplies probably will strain progress and exacerbate casualties during the offensive.” Total Ukrainian deaths in the war at that point were estimated to be as low as 17,500. About a month before the start of the offensive, I again warned that the odds were stacked heavily against Kyiv.

To succeed, I explained, Ukraine would “have to conduct the most difficult task in modern land warfare: a combined arms operation into the teeth of a dug-in enemy force that is prepared for an attack,” complicated by the shortage of artillery ammunition along with “limited airpower and minimal air defense.” Nevertheless, on the eve of battle, some Western analysts remained optimistic. Once the offensive began on June 5, however, that optimism quickly evaporated. In the first two weeks of the fighting, Ukraine’s spearhead brigades suffered massive losses in armor and personnel while capturing virtually no territory. By the end of the third week, they had lost an estimated fifth of their strike force, requiring Ukraine to dramatically change tactics. Instead of leading with tanks and other armored vehicles (which were predictably getting chewed up in minefields and by Russian anti-tank missiles and artillery shells), Ukraine moved to an infantry-centric attack system.

While this change did result in producing incremental gains, the cost was exorbitant. On Aug. 29, the BBC reported that new leaked reports suggested Ukrainian battle deaths exploded since the offensive started. Whereas Ukraine was reported to have lost 17,500 troops in the first year of the war, it is presently assessed to have lost a breathtakingly high 50,000 additional deaths, for a total of 70,000 dead and 120,000 wounded. If it wasn’t clear to Washington before the offensive started that the fundamentals of combat operations and principles of war indicated Ukraine would likely fail, it should now be crystal clear. Although Ukraine appears to have finally penetrated the first line of Russia’s main defense, the most difficult part of Russia’s defensive system has yet to be overcome: the hundreds of kilometers of dragon’s teeth, tank ditches, and yet more vast minefields.

It is unclear at this point whether Ukraine has enough striking power remaining in its offensive forces to reach, much less penetrate, Russia’s second main line—beyond which is a third main line followed by a fortress-defense at Tokmak, which is still 75 road kilometers from the Azov coast. Given these realities, the best Ukraine can likely do for the rest of the year is to hold what they have and prevent the possibility of losing more territory to a potential Russian counteroffensive this fall. [..] Rather than repeating over the next year and a half what has already not worked—potentially costing Ukraine yet additional hundreds of thousands of losses—it’s time to try something that has a chance to succeed. In other words, it’s time to acknowledge objective reality and employ policies that can work.

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Here’s the New York Times welcoming gift to Zelensky. While he’s at the United Nations, the paper calls him a liar, to his face.

I’ve seen quite a few comments on this, and not one ponders that perhaps this was a deliberate Ukraine attack. Would that be so far-fetched?

NYT Exposes Zelensky Lie About Donbass Missile Strike (RT)

A New York Times investigation revealed on Monday that Ukrainian forces were mostly likely responsible for a deadly missile strike at a market, which happened the same day US Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited the country. The incident on September 6 in the Kiev-controlled Donbass city of Konstantinovka killed at least 15 civilians and injured scores of others. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky immediately accused Russia of launching the strike and claimed that any “attempts to deal with anything Russian” meant turning a blind eye to “the audacity of evil.” Many Western media outlets and some governments endorsed his statement.

The NYT said evidence pointed to a “tragic mishap” involving a Ukrainian anti-air Buk missile that apparently veered off course. The newspaper analyzed missile fragments, satellite imagery, witness accounts, and social media posts to come to the conclusion. It noted that Ukrainian authorities tried to prevent journalists from accessing the impact site. Some people unsympathetic to the Russian cause, including Bild journalist Julian Ropcke and the open-source intelligence analysis group CIT suggested Kiev’s responsibility shortly after the incident. The Ukrainian government indicated that it considered Russian guilt to be beyond any doubt.

“What would an investigation be needed for, if all is obvious for us?” Zelensky’s senior aide Mikhail Podoliak told the media at the time. He called any other scenario, including a Ukrainian error, “ridiculous.” The missile was apparently one of the two fired by Ukrainian forces from the outskirts of the town of Druzhkovka some 15 km to the northwest of Konstantinovka, NYT reported. The projectile was likely a 9M38 model used by the Buk system, the newspaper concluded based on forensic evidence. Considering the short distance from the presumed launch point, it probably crashed with much of its fuel unspent, and the subsequent explosion left scorch marks at the scene.

Russian Ambassador to the UN Vassily Nebenzia mentioned the incident in a speech last week, suggesting that Kiev may have orchestrated it deliberately to coincide with Blinken’s visit. He added that as the evidence clearly contradicts Zelensky’s accusation, “the Kiev regime and its sponsors are trying to hush up this story and keep it off radar.” At least one Kiev official has been forced to resign after attributing a strike to Ukrainian forces that his government had pinned on Russia. Aleksey Arestovich quit his post as an advisor to the president in January, amid pressure over an interview in which he suggested that an apartment block in the city of Dnepr was hit by a Ukrainian interceptor rather than a Russian cruise missile. The Russian military has maintained since the start of the conflict that it only targets military objectives in its operations.

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“What would an investigation be needed for, if all is obvious for us?”

NYT Spreading ‘Conspiracy Theories’ On Ukrainian Missile Strike – Podoliak (RT)

Claims that Ukraine was responsible for killing at least 15 civilians in a missile strike on a Donbass market are “conspiracy theories,” Mikhail Podoliak, a top adviser to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky, has declared. The New York Times has suggested that the missile involved was Ukrainian, not Russian. “No doubt, the appearance of articles in foreign media with doubts about Russia’s involvement in the attack on Konstantinovka entail the growth of conspiracy theories,” Podoliak wrote on X (formerly Twitter) on Tuesday. Promising that the incident would be investigated by Ukrainian authorities, Podoliak added that “society will surely receive an answer to the question of what exactly happened in Kostiantynivka, as in the thousands of other instances of Russian strikes on our country as part of an unprovoked war.”

The strike took place on September 6, while US Secretary of State Antony Blinken was visiting Kiev. A missile struck a market in the Kiev-controlled Donbass city of Konstantinovka, killing 15 civilians and injuring scores of others. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky immediately accused Russia of launching the strike and claimed that any “attempts to deal with anything Russian” meant turning a blind eye to “the audacity of evil.” Although many Western media outlets and some governments endorsed his statement, doubt soon crept in. The New York Times reported on Monday that evidence from the scene pointed to a “tragic mishap”involving a Ukrainian anti-air Buk missile.

The newspaper analyzed missile fragments, satellite imagery, witness accounts, and social media posts to come to the conclusion, and noted that Ukrainian authorities tried to prevent journalists from accessing the impact site. At the time, Podoliak ridiculed the notion of investigating the strike.“What would an investigation be needed for, if all is obvious for us?” he said. In his post on Monday, the official insisted that Ukraine “exclusively conducts defensive actions, defending itself and its territories.”

However, Ukrainian forces have fired missiles at civilian targets before. In addition to its regular shelling of the Donetsk People’s Republic since 2014, Ukrainian forces have used Western-provided missiles to strike the cities of Donetsk and Lugansk, and repeatedly struck Donetsk with cluster munitions and aerially-dispersed landmines. Last March, a Ukrainian Tochka-Umissile was allegedly fired at a residential area of Donetsk, killing at least 20 people after it was downed by Russian air defense systems. Despite evidence from the ground showing the missile was Ukrainian in origin, Zelensky nevertheless blamed Russia for attacking its own people, insisting it was “unmistakably a Russian rocket” and that “there’s no point talking about it.”

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“..you have this guy Zelensky, who’s billed as Mother Theresa… or reincarnation of Winston Churchill…And we’re learning more and more that this guy is a corrupt autocrat… He basically brought his own country to ruin, and he’s continuously begging for more and more weapons..”

Zelensky’s US Visit a ‘Dog & Pony Show’ to Plug Cracks in Ukraine Support (Sp.)

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky is foraying to the United States for the second time since Russia’s special operation began, having last been there in December 2022. Zelensky was offered a hero’s welcome at the time, as he addressed Congress touting Kiev’s battlefield “successes” while angling for continued Western aid. But roll the clock forward, and “take two” of the Zelensky “show” now comes against a much-changed backdrop: the overly heralded Ukraine counteroffensive “debacle,” huge losses in manpower and destroyed NATO-gifted weaponry, and an ever-stronger chorus of voices among Republican lawmakers against sending more money down the Ukraine sinkhole. What kind of change in tone and rhetoric can we expect from the leader of the Kiev regime as he attends the UN General Assembly in New York, and meets with congressional leaders and President Joe Biden in Washington?

“It’s going to be an extremely difficult visit for Zelensky,” Daniel McAdams, executive director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, told Sputnik. “He [Zelensky] was hailed as the conquering hero… He was lionized in Congress… He gave a speech… He handed a flag to the vice president and then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi,” recalled Daniel McAdams, adding that the Ukrainian president had vowed “Bakhmut [Artemovsk] would be a turning point in the war.” “He was right about that, but not in the way he expected. No, it’s a very, very different world now,” said the pundit. “Antony Blinken was just out there [and] he gave him a heads up as to what to expect. And I think you can tell by his [Ukrainian president’s] subsequent interview in The Economist, where Zelensky was very glum and very dark, and he said something like, ‘Well, all of these leaders say that they support us, but when I look in their eyes, I can tell they’re not telling the truth…’ So it’s going to be an extremely difficult visit from Zelensky to New York in Washington,” Daniel McAdams said.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken made a two-day surprise visit to Ukraine in early September, to announce more than $1 billion in aid for Kiev. However, the visit came as the third month of Ukraine’s botched counteroffensive ended with the Kiev regime unable to boast of any military gains. “Well, I think this dog and pony show is going to air. So, you know, you have this guy Zelensky, who’s billed as Mother Theresa… or reincarnation of Winston Churchill…And we’re learning more and more that this guy is a corrupt autocrat… He basically brought his own country to ruin, and he’s continuously begging for more and more weapons. You know, our societies are fraying, state legislatures are constantly saying they have no money for social programs, and yet they pull billions of dollars out of the hat for Ukraine,” Jeremy Kuzmarov, managing editor of the Covert Action magazine and the author of several books on US foreign policy, told Sputnik.

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“..the EU has implemented 11 sets of sanctions against Russia..” And not learned a single thing.

EU Seeking Something Russian To Sanction – Bloomberg (RT)

The European Union is in the final stages of crafting its 12th set of Ukraine-related sanctions against Russia, as reported by Bloomberg on Monday, citing sources familiar with the ongoing discussions. According to the news outlet, this forthcoming package of sanctions is expected to concentrate on further measures to hinder Russia’s capacity to circumvent previously imposed restrictions, particularly its efforts to import sanctioned goods through intermediary countries, such as Türkiye and the UAE. Sources claim that the EU’s sanctions list may be expanded to align with the upcoming G7 ban on purchasing Russian diamonds, anticipated to be announced in the coming weeks. It envisions direct and indirect prohibitions on acquiring Russian diamonds starting from January 1.

Additionally, the new EU package is said to include a proposal regarding the potential utilization of profits generated by frozen assets belonging to the Central Bank of Russia. Discussions concerning the legality of seizing these assets to support Ukraine have been ongoing for months, with sources indicating that they may be nearing a resolution. Furthermore, the European Commission is expected to propose implementing a windfall tax on the earnings generated by Russian central bank assets within EU clearing houses. Certain member states, including Poland and the Baltic nations, have reportedly proposed additional restrictions on Russia’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports and IT services. Specific details regarding these proposals remain undisclosed.

This group of states has also advocated for sanctions targeting Russia’s nuclear industry. However, past efforts to sanction this sector have been waived, primarily because many countries, including many within the EU, depend on Russian atomic fuels. The announcement of this new sanctions package is anticipated in either the first half of October or during an EU-US summit slated for the next month. Since the commencement of Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine in February of the previous year, the EU has implemented 11 sets of sanctions against Russia, targeting various sectors of the Russian economy and its financial institutions. Some member states have reportedly expressed concerns that there is not much left to sanction while urging Brussels to enforce existing restrictions effectively.

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“..The categorical imperative was simple: as long as Pyongyang did not start any trouble, Moscow and Beijing would be by its side..”

Russia, North Korea Stage ‘Strategic Coup’ Against Western Hegemony (Pepe Escobar)

The genesis of Kim Jong Un’s train journey to the Russian Far East – coinciding with the Forum, no less – is a masterful strategic coup that was in the works since 2014, at the time of the Maidan. Xi Jinping was still in the beginning of his first mandate; he had announced the New Silk Road exactly ten years ago, first in Astana and then in Jakarta. The DPRK was not supposed to be integrated into this vast pan-Eurasian project that would soon become China’s overarching foreign policy concept. The DPRK then was on a roll against the Hegemon, under Obama, and Beijing was no more than a worried spectator. Moscow, of course, was always focused on peace in the Korean Peninsula, especially because its geopolitical priorities in 2014 were Donbass and Syria/Iran. The last thing Moscow could afford was a war in Asia-Pacific.

Putin’s strategy was to send Defense Minister Shoigu to Beijing and Islamabad to calm it all down. Pakistan at the time was helping Pyongyang to weaponize their nuclear arsenal. Simultaneously, Putin himself approached Kim, offering serious guarantees: we’ve got your back if ever there is an attack by the Hegemon supported by Seoul. Even better: Putin got Xi himself to double down on the guarantees. The categorical imperative was simple: as long as Pyongyang did not start any trouble, Moscow and Beijing would be by its side. A sort of calm before any possible storm then set in – even if Pyongyang continued to test their missiles. So over the years, Kim’s mindset changed; he became convinced that Russia and China were his allies. The DPRK’s geoeconomic integration into Eurasia was seriously discussed in previous, pre-Covid editions of the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok.

That included the tantalizing possibility of a Trans-Korean Railway linking both North and South to the Far East, Siberia and the wider Eurasia. So Kim started to see the Big Eurasia Picture, and how Pyongyang could finally start to benefit geoeconomically from a closer association with the EAEU, SCO and BRI. This is how strategic diplomacy works: you invest during a decade, and then all the pieces fall into place when an armored train keeps-a-rollin’ across Primorsky Krai. From the perspective of a Russia-China-DPRK triangle, it’s no wonder the collective West has been reduced to the status of crying toddlers in a sandbox. The Hegemon’s puny US-Japan-South Korea axis to counter, simultaneously, China and the DPRK, is a joke compared to the DPRK’s brand-new role as a sort of Asia-Pacific Military District, adjacent to their immediate neighbor, the Russian Far East.

There will be military integration, of course, in missile defense, radars, ports, airfields. But the key vector, along the way, will be geoeconomic integration. Sanctions from now on are meaningless. No one in 2014 was seeing this all play out, except for a very sharp analyst who coined the precious Double Helix concept to define the still evolving, at the time, Russia-China comprehensive strategic partnership. The Double Helix perfectly explains the full-spectrum geostrategic symbiosis between two civilization-states which happen to be former empires but since the middle of the previous decade willfully decided to accelerate their mutual drive to lead the Global Majority in the path towards multipolarity.

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Criminal, dictator,…

Biden Repeats ‘Unforgivable’ Remark About Putin (RT)

US President Joe Biden has described Russian President Vladimir Putin as a “dictator,” claiming that his main political opponent, former President Donald Trump, would “bow down to” him if elected in 2024. The Democrat also touted himself as a defender of US democracy. Speaking to supporters during a fundraiser at the Lunt-Fontanne Theater in New York City on Monday, Biden said, “I will not side with dictators like Putin. Maybe Trump and his MAGA friends can bow down, but I won’t.” The incumbent president claimed that “Donald Trump and his MAGA Republicans are determined to destroy American democracy,” whereas he would always “protect and fight” for it. This recent comment made by the US head of state about President Putin is not the first instance of him referring to another foreign leader as a dictator.

Last March, Biden told attendees of the annual Friends of Ireland Luncheon that the US and its allies were standing together against a “murderous dictator, a pure thug who is waging an immoral war against the people of Ukraine.” A day prior, the US president said he considered Putin a “war criminal.” Commenting on Biden’s remarks at the time, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov told TASS news agency that Moscow deemed “unacceptable and unforgivable such rhetoric from a head of state whose bombs have killed hundreds of thousands of people around the world.” He noted that the US leader had resorted to “personal insults,” a level that President Putin, a “thoughtful and wise leader,” would never stoop to. sLast month, several US media outlets also quoted President Biden as alleging that China is run by “bad folks.” In June, he described Chinese President Xi Jinping as a “dictator,” which Beijing characterized as a “political provocation.”

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The EU needs no help creating crises.

Putin Behind EU Migrant Crisis – Polish Diplomat (RT)

A senior Polish diplomat has suggested that the recent surge in illegal immigrants arriving on the Italian island of Lampedusa might be a component of a Russian hybrid operation designed to erode the European Union’s support for Ukraine. This concern comes in light of a recent report from the Italian Interior Ministry, which indicates that over 89,000 people have entered Italy illegally this year. Lampedusa, an overcrowded Mediterranean island, remains a prominent destination for these arrivals. “Someone is helping these people walk hundreds if not thousands of kilometers from Nigeria and Central African countries to the Mediterranean Sea,” Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Arkadiusz Mularczyk speculated in an interview with Polish Radio on Tuesday. “Someone who has an interest in it. And Russia undoubtedly has an interest in it,” he added.

He asserted that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s objective is to “destabilize the situation in Western Europe.” Mularczyk suggested that the current state of confusion and unrest brought on by illegal immigration serves as a means to divert attention away from the ongoing crisis in Ukraine. According to him, Putin is believed to be exerting influence “behind the scenes” in smuggling individuals into the EU, often facilitated by criminal groups. “And it was successful because today, the war in Ukraine is fading into the background, and the entire EU is talking about what is happening in Lampedusa,” the diplomat stated. Claims of Russia’s alleged involvement in facilitating illegal immigration into Europe have circulated for years. In November 2021, this issue gained prominence when certain EU member states, including Poland, accused Russia’s ally, Belarus – and, by extension, Russia – of exploiting migrants seeking asylum in the EU for political purposes.

At that time, President Putin addressed this ongoing challenge, stating that the “key link” of migrant smuggling networks was located within the EU. He argued that European officials were attempting to blame Russia for their own policy shortcomings. According to him, the root causes of the influx of migrants are Western military interventions abroad and the attractive welfare benefits EU nations offer asylum seekers. “Deal with your internal problems and don’t lay on other people [your domestic] issues,” the Russian leader suggested. The ruling conservative Polish government has been openly criticizing Brussels and Western European countries, particularly Germany, for their perceived inadequacies in addressing illegal migration issues and for imposing the burden of hosting migrants on other EU member states.

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US/NATO poking the bear some more.

Zakharova: Russia hopes Armenia will realize full danger of adventure started by Westerners.

Erdogan, in his address at the UN General Assembly: “Karabakh is Azerbaijan”.

Kremlin Calls on Armenia and Azerbaijan to Adhere to Trilateral Agreements (Sp.)

Russia calls on Armenia and Azerbaijan to adhere to trilateral agreements on Nagorno-Karabakh, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Tuesday after Baku launched a military operation in the breakaway region. “The only substantive basis is the trilateral documents of two and three years ago, which were signed between Russia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan, so we urge everyone to follow the provisions of these documents and, naturally, taking into account those new realities, this means the fact of recognition by the Armenian side of the territory of Azerbaijan as of 1991,” Peskov told reporters. The spokesman added that the opportunity to reach a political and diplomatic solution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict still “exists.” “The main thing is to convince both Yerevan and Baku to abandon use of force and sit down at the negotiating table,” Peskov said.

Earlier in September, Putin said that he received a letter from Pashinyan, and that Russia has no problems with Armenia.Russian President Vladimir Putin and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan did not have any contacts after Pashinyan’s letter, Peskov stated.”Indeed, there was a detailed letter stating the point of view of the Armenian side to what is happening. At that time, there was actually… work on resuming the delivery of humanitarian aid to Karabakh. And to our satisfaction, as of yesterday, this work was successful. The first batch went in two directions through the Aghdam and Lachin roads, but unfortunately this did not prevent the resumption of hostilities. There have been no other contacts since then,” the spokesman said in response to a question about whether there were any other contacts between Putin and Pashinyan besides the letter sent earlier by the Armenian politician.

The Russian military is in contact with the Armenian and Azerbaijani sides, and contacts at the highest level are also possible, Peskov stressed. “First of all, contacts are now being carried out through our military, through other departments. Communication at a higher level is also consistent. As soon as final agreements are reached, we will inform you immediately, including about possible contacts at the highest level,” the spokesman told reporters, commenting on whether contacts with Baku and Yerevan are planned in the coming hours. The Russian military is trying to return the process in Nagorno-Karabakh to a political and diplomatic track, Peskov emphasized.

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“..a much healthier security paradigm has emerged in recent years from Eurasia..”

The West Destroyed Africa, Eurasia Will Revive It (Ehret)

In Africa, injustice looms large, marked by poverty, warfare, and famine. Despite post-WWII political gains, economic independence, a vital component of true freedom as envisioned by Pan African leaders like Kwame Nkrumah, Patrice Lumumba, and Haile Selassie, remains elusive. After decades of restrictive IMF and World Bank loans, poverty, hunger, and conflict persist throughout the continent. While many attribute this to Africa’s governance challenges, in reality, a deliberate imperial agenda has hindered the continent’s development in all political, economic, and security sectors. But much has changed in the past few years. The growing clout of Eurasian institutions that fully embrace Global South countries as valuable, integral, and equal members – the BRICS+ and Greater Eurasian Partnership are examples – offer hope that old neo-colonial shackles will be broken and that Africa can enjoy an unfettered renaissance.

The rise of a new global pole to challenge the old unipolar order has had a notable impact across sub-Saharan West Africa which, in recent years, has seen a surge in military coups shifting power away from regimes that had long prioritized the interests of western corporations. These coups occurred in Chad (April 2021), Mali (May 2021), Guinea (September 2021), Sudan (October 2021), Burkina Faso (January 2022), Niger (July 2023), and Gabon (August 2023) – all resource-rich countries with abnormally poor living conditions. In Gabon, over 30 percent of its people live on less than $1 per day, while 60 percent of its regions have no healthcare or clean drinking water despite the abundance of gold, diamonds, manganese, uranium, iron ore, natural gas, and oil – mostly monopolized by French corporations like Eramat, Total and Ariva.

Despite its abundance of rare earths, copper, uranium, and Gold, 70 percent of Malians still live in abject poverty. SImilarly, Sudan, with its riches in oil, fertile soil, and water, has 77 percent of the population living below the poverty line. In uranium-rich Niger, which provides over 35 percent of the fuel for France’s nuclear industry (accounting for 70 percent of France’s energy basket), mainly under the control of France’s Orano, only 3 percent of Nigerians have access to electricity. In the “former” French colony of Chad, that number is only a little higher at 9 percent, and a still-unacceptable 20 percent in Burkina Faso. While Altanticists desperately seek ways to keep their talons embedded into the African continent and its abundant riches, a much healthier security paradigm has emerged in recent years from Eurasia.

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“..to again steal an Election that their candidate, the WORST, MOST INCOMPETENT, & MOST CORRUPT President in U.S. history, is incapable of winning in a Free and Fair Election.”

California Lawmakers Push for Ruling on Booting Trump From State Primary Ballot (Sp.)

The movement to block former President Donald Trump’s 2024 election bid gained steam on Monday as California Democrats urged his removal from the state’s primary ballot. Nine lawmakers penned a letter to the state’s Democratic Attorney General Rob Bonta advocating for Trump’s disqualification from the March 5 primary, arguing his ineligibility on grounds of inciting an uprising during the riots at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021. The effort is one of several state-level initiatives arguing against Trump’s candidacy on constitutional grounds, citing the Fourteenth Amendment’s barring of candidates “engaged in insurrection or rebellion against” the United States from holding office. The California effort is notable in its attempt to resolve the question via the state’s attorney general, an approach which may lead to a faster resolution of the question.

“We all watched in horror Mr. Trump’s insurrection against the United States when he ordered a mob of his supporters to the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021 to intimidate [then] Vice President [Mike] Pence and the United States Congress,” reads the letter, spearheaded by Silicon Valley assemblymember Evan Low. “There is no denying that Donald Trump has engaged in behavior that is unacceptable and unbecoming of any leader,” stated a spokesperson for Bonta, appearing to sympathize with some of the lawmakers’ claims. sHowever, whether Bonta intends to fully weigh in on the matter in his position as the state’s attorney general remains an open question. Various other state-level officials throughout the country have determined the matter would clearly violate precedent, if not their own jurisdiction. Others claim the issue would ultimately need to be resolved by the Supreme Court regardless.

“We have a constitutional republic of laws,” argued Georgia elections official Gabriel Sterling after a similar petition was lodged in Minnesota. “Anybody using an electoral scheme or a constitutional interpretation to remove anybody from the ballot is going to be a dangerous precedent.” Trump weighed in on the issue in a post on Truth Social, writing, “Almost all legal scholars have voiced opinions that the 14th Amendment has no legal basis or standing relative to the upcoming 2024 Presidential Election.” “Like Election Interference, it is just another ‘trick’ being used by the Radical Left Communists, Marxists, and Fascists, to again steal an Election that their candidate, the WORST, MOST INCOMPETENT, & MOST CORRUPT President in U.S. history, is incapable of winning in a Free and Fair Election.”

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Mr. Biden here is Hunter.

House Republicans Set Date for 1st Biden Impeachment Hearing (ET)

The U.S. House of Representatives will hold its first impeachment inquiry hearing this month, the House Oversight Committee confirmed on Sept. 19. The first hearing will take place on Sept. 28, a spokesperson for the House Oversight Committee told The Epoch Times. “The hearing will focus on constitutional and legal questions surrounding the president’s involvement in corruption and abuse of public office,” the spokesperson said. “The Committee also intends to subpoena Hunter and James Biden’s personal and business bank records as early as this week. The Oversight Committee will continue to follow the evidence and money trail to provide the transparency and accountability that Americans demand from their government.”

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) recently announced that the lower chamber would be investigating President Joe Biden, with a focus on his involvement in the business dealings of his son Hunter Biden and brother James Biden. “House Republicans have uncovered serious and credible allegations into President Biden’s conduct. Taken together, these allegations paint a picture of a culture of corruption,” Mr. McCarthy said. He said that the inquiry would help lawmakers obtain more evidence, including bank records. Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), chairman of the House Oversight Committee, is helping lead the probe. Ian Sams, a White House spokesman, said that Republicans have already been investigating the president and have “turned up no evidence of wrongdoing.”

President Biden recently told reporters, “The best I can tell, they want to impeach me because they want to shut down the government.” Mr. Comer and other Republicans have found that the president spoke repeatedly to business partners of Mr. Biden, including at dinners at Washington’s Cafe Milano. They also confirmed that President Biden sent emails under pseudonyms while vice president, including accounts that corresponded with Mr. Biden. Mr. Biden, other Biden family members, and associates received more than $21 million, primarily from foreigners, while President Biden was vice president. Mr. Biden was charged with tax violations, but those charges were withdrawn after a plea deal fell apart. He was also charged with several felony gun crimes this month. Mr. Biden sued the IRS on Sept. 18 for allegedly breaching his right to privacy by speaking publicly about the agency’s probe into him.

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“Speaker McCarthy needs to find a way to do his job, which is to pass a continuing resolution,” Yellen added.”

McCarthy Delays Vote on 30-Day Funding Resolution as Gov’t Shutdown Nears (Sp.)

US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has postponed a vote on a stopgap spending bill amid his attempts to appease a small but powerful right-wing faction of the Republican Party as a government shutdown looms. The procedural vote originally scheduled for Tuesday afternoon would have approved a 30-day government funding bill, moving it to the Senate and opening the door for wider talks. Some sort of funding bill must be passed by September 26 to avert a shutdown on September 30, but in lieu of agreement on larger appropriations bills, lawmakers have focused on passing a short-term funding bill to give them more time to negotiate. Reports in US media did not indicate when the vote would be held.

But even that has so far evaded federal lawmakers as a small faction of one dozen Republican Representatives aligned with former US President Donald Trump have used the GOP’s extremely narrow majority to position themselves as legislative kingmakers in the lower chamber since the new Congress was sworn in in January. Without their approval, McCarthy’s leadership over Republicans and the House of Representatives as a whole is effectively impossible. The most recent legislation, proposed by Republicans over the weekend, would fund the government until October 31 and includes a 1% cut in current spending levels across the entire federal government for that time, with some departments suffering worse than others. However, the dissident Republicans want to press for even deeper cuts, and are demanding more precise numbers on top-line budget items.

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen took aim at McCarthy on Monday, telling US media the speaker “needs to find a way to do his job.” “There’s absolutely no reason why we should have a government shutdown,” she said. “Democrats in both the House and the Senate and Republicans in the Senate are ready to pass appropriations bills or a continuing resolution to keep the government open and operating for the American people.” “Speaker McCarthy needs to find a way to do his job, which is to pass a continuing resolution,” Yellen added.

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From Canada, land of vaccines. The mandates will just continue everywhere.

COVID-19 Vaccines Revealed as ‘Neither Safe, Nor Effective’: Watchdog (ET)

COVID-19 vaccines were authorized in Canada during 2020 and 2021 without being subjected to the country’s safety tests as required under established drug regulations, an accountability watchdog revealed. An investigation into COVID-19 vaccines found that they were “neither safe nor effective,” according to the nonprofit organization National Citizens Inquiry (NCI). The organization published a report on Sept. 14 detailing the flawed mechanism through which the vaccines were granted “approval” in Canada. “It is important to understand that the COVID-19 vaccines were never approved under the traditional approval process for drugs in Canada,” the report states. Instead, Health Canada, the federal agency responsible for national health policy, approved the vaccines through an alternative authorization process—an interim order.

“Under the alternative authorization process, the necessity to establish the safety and efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines through an objective manner appears to have been set aside,” the report states. Canada’s Food and Drug Regulations require that a drug can only be approved in the country after its safety and effectiveness are demonstrated to the minister of health. Then, the minister considers whether the benefits outweigh the risks, following which, approval is granted. Instead of following regulations, the minister of health sanctioned an interim order on Sept. 16, 2021, which exempted all COVID-19 vaccines from normal review and approval. This provision usually allows the minister to override normal regulations in situations of “significant risk” to health, safety, or the environment.

Desmet

In Canada, four COVID-19 vaccines were authorized by the health agency under an interim order—Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Janssen, and AstraZeneca. The report notes that under the order, vaccines were authorized under a “subjective test.” In this situation, authorization is granted by simply proving that the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks. “This cannot be an appropriate standard for approving a drug that the Government intends to administer to the entire population. It is difficult to conceive of a less-scientific test for drug authorization than that found in the Interim Order,” the report states. Moreover, the order made sure that the vaccine authorizations couldn’t be revoked even under evidence that they were unsafe and ineffective.

Once an interim order is issued, the typical Food and Drug Regulations don’t apply. The order thus exempted manufacturers from having to effectively demonstrate “objective evidence of safety and effectiveness” of their COVID-19 vaccines. “The result was that while chief medical officers across the country repeatedly assured Canadians that the COVID-19 vaccines were ‘safe and effective’—the general Canadian population had no understanding that their authorization process had not required objective proof of safety nor efficacy,” the report states. The NCI report was supported by cardiologist Dr. Peter A. McCullough. “Excellent work @Inquiry_Canada with exhaustive testimony and evidence review.

Conclusion: all COVID-19 vaccines unsafe for human use and must be removed from the Canadian market immediately to protect the public,” he wrote in a Sept. 16 post on X. Dr. McCullough recently asked European lawmakers to take COVID-19 vaccines off the market due to concerns about illnesses such as heart inflammation, blood clots, and neurological diseases. s“COVID-19 vaccines and all of their progeny and future boosters are not safe for human use. I implore you, as a governing body, European Medicines Agency, to apply all pressure and due urgency to remove the COVID-19 vaccines from market,” Dr. McCullough said in Sept. 13 testimony to the European Parliament.

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Peppers
https://twitter.com/i/status/1703748990360007005

 

 

 

 

Zeihan

 

 

Monastery

 

 


Guttation is the exudation of drops of xylem sap on the tips or edges of leaves of some vascular plants, such as grasses. It’s not dew ..

 

 

Baby bara
https://twitter.com/i/status/1704255369302716642

 

 

Fun with dogs
https://twitter.com/i/status/1704369705232842913

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Sep 142023
 
 September 14, 2023  Posted by at 8:52 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  39 Responses »


Claude Monet The Wooden Bridge 1872

 

White House Tells Media How To Cover Biden Impeachment (RT)
White House Tells Media To “Ramp Up Scrutiny” of Impeachment Inquiry (Turley)
Hunter Biden Sues Former Trump Aide Who Published Laptop Materials (Sp.)
RFK Jr. Telegraphs Threat to Vacate Democrat Party (PJM)
Does Putin Realize The Danger In Projecting The Image Of A Weak Russia? (PCR)
EU States Tell Zelensky They Won’t Hand Over Draft Dodgers (RT)
China And India Have ‘Low Intellectual Potential’ – Zelensky Aide (RT)
Russia’s Pivot To The East Is ‘Irreversible’ (RT)
The South China Sea’s Resource Wars (Frank)
Musk Gave Control Of Starlink To Pentagon – Biographer (RT)
‘Weaponized Govt Agencies’ “Don’t Wish Good Things For Me” – Elon Musk (ZH)
Great Reset Visionaries Stumble Upon An Unexpected Roadblock (Schlevogt)
Was There A “War On Terror” Or A War On The American People? (PCR)

 

 

Biden map
https://twitter.com/i/status/1702117416313208863

 

 

War Games in the Black Sea – Now What? w/ Col Doug Macgregor

 

 

Hunter

 

 

Emmer

 

 

 

 

These are the same people who impeached Trump based on lies invented from whole cloth by the Hillary Clinton campaign. Who made sure the FBI sat on the laptop for 4-5 years. Who had 51 intel guys and gals declare all its contents Russian disinformation. Those same people.

White House Tells Media How To Cover Biden Impeachment (RT)

White House lawyers have reportedly written a letter directing CNN, the New York Times and other US media outlets to scrutinize Republican lawmakers more aggressively as they try to impeach US President Joe Biden. CNN and other recipients of the letter acknowledged getting the missive on Wednesday. “It’s time for the media to ramp up its scrutiny of House Republicans for opening an impeachment inquiry based on lies,” Ian Sams, a spokesman for the White House Counsel’s Office, wrote in the letter. He added that the impeachment efforts should “set off alarm bells for news organizations.” US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-California) launched the impeachment effort on Tuesday, directing committees of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives to open a formal inquiry.

He said allegations of influence-peddling and solicitation of bribes by the Biden family “paint a picture of a culture of corruption.” Even before receiving any guidance from the White House, some US media outlets already appeared to be trying to protect the president. CNN and Associated Press, for instance, suggested that Republicans were trying to prosecute Biden without having evidence to justify their investigation. Those outlets apparently ignored such evidence as the sworn testimony of IRS whistleblowers and the records of bank transfers that lawmakers have already revealed. By launching impeachment proceedings, congressional committees will gain more power to subpoena documents that could help prove or debunk the allegations.

Veteran US journalist Matthew Keys, who has worked for such outlets as Reuters and Fox News, said the White House directive on impeachment coverage was “not OK.” He added, “The White House should not be encouraging, influencing or interfering in the editorial strategies of America’s newsrooms, including CNN and the New York Times.” The letter could backfire, Keys said, because “any time the media does try to hold Republicans to account, those lawmakers can simply counter by questioning whether it’s actual journalism or something encouraged by the Biden administration.” Legal scholar Jonathan Turley, a professor at George Washington University, said the directive “has an uncomfortable feeling of marching orders to the media.”

By trying to influence coverage of the impeachment inquiry, he argued, the administration “removes any pretense of separation between the Biden personal legal team and the White House Counsel’s Office.” Sams, who also serves as a senior adviser to Biden, claimed that Republicans had failed in nearly nine months of investigation to “turn up any evidence of the president doing anything wrong.” He added that impeachment is “grave, rare and historic,” and the press must treat the claims of Republicans with “appropriate scrutiny.” The White House official attached a 14-page appendix to his memo providing talking points to address Republican “lies.” Democrats previously controlled the House and twice impeached then-President Donald Trump.

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Turley’s take: “..the White House is now calling for the media to again form the wagons around the President and attack the impeachment effort as it did the laptop and the corruption investigation.”

White House Tells Media To “Ramp Up Scrutiny” of Impeachment Inquiry (Turley)

[..] a system by consent rather than coercion. Given that long concern, a letter drafted by the Biden White House Legal Counsel’s Office was striking in a call for major media to “ramp up their scrutiny” of House Republicans “for opening an impeachment inquiry based on lies.” The message is curious and concerning, particularly in the aggressive role being played by the White House Counsel’s office under Stuart Frank Delery. First, as I have previously noted, the White House is now actively involved in pushing narratives and denying factual allegations linked to the Biden corruption scandal. That could create Nixonian-type allegations of the abuse of office in the use of federal employees to counter impeachment efforts. Second, the letter was drafted by Ian Sams, a spokesperson for the White House Counsel’s Office.

So White House lawyers are now enlisting the media in a counter media campaign against impeachment? The letter removes any pretense of separation between the Biden personal legal team and the White House Counsel’s office. Sams has been the most aggressive White House official in actively swatting down allegations of corruption as well as the President’s documents investigation. Third, the letter calls for the media to actively support the White House account. The draft of the letter is a call for what I have previously criticized as “advocacy journalism” where reporters frame stories to advance their own viewpoints or values. Sam wrote “[c]overing impeachment as a process story – Republicans say X, but the White House says Y – is a disservice to the American public who relies on the independent press to hold those in power accountable.”

In other words, media should (and it has for years) refuse to give equal attention to allegations agains the Bidens and instead tell the public what the truth is. It is a call for media to tailor the coverage to push the position of the White House against this effort to ramp up the investigation into corruption. It is an approach that is already embraced by many in the media. [..] The letter has an uncomfortable feeling of marching orders to the media. This is a media that followed the lead of Biden associates in spreading the false story that the Hunter laptop was Russian disinformation. This is the media that refused to acknowledge the authenticity of the laptop until only recently — long after the presidential election. This was the media that only recently admitted that President Biden has been lying about denials related to his son’s influence peddling. Yet, the White House is now calling for the media to again form the wagons around the President and attack the impeachment effort as it did the laptop and the corruption investigation.

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“..the suit against Ziegler does not admit the laptop belonged to Hunter Biden but does assert the data belongs to him..”

Hunter Biden Sues Former Trump Aide Who Published Laptop Materials (Sp.)

Attorneys for Hunter Biden have filed a suit against Garrett Ziegler, who has been publishing emails and photos allegedly from Hunter Biden’s now infamous laptop, alleging that he violated California state and federal computer fraud laws in doing so. The suit, filed in California, specifically accuses Ziegler and a non-profit organization he runs called Marco Polo, of violating the California Computer Data Access and Fraud Act and the federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. On the Marco Polo website, Ziegler published tens of thousands of emails, photos and videos purportedly from the laptop. Similar to Hunter Biden’s lawsuit against laptop repair shop owner John Paul Mac Isaac, the suit against Ziegler does not admit the laptop belonged to Hunter Biden but does assert the data belongs to him.

The lawsuit also accuses Ziegler of hacking an encrypted backup of Hunter Biden’s iPhone that was on the laptop, something he seemingly admitted to doing during a December 2022 interview. Mac Isaac, who says he first gave the laptop to the FBI and later to former President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani, has also sued Hunter Biden, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and two US media outlets for defamation and civil conspiracy. Both lawsuits are pending. Ziegler is a former Trump aide who worked under trade adviser Peter Navarro. The lawsuit describes him as “a zealot who has waged a sustained, unhinged and obsessed campaign against [Hunter Biden] and the entire Biden family for more than two years.”

[..] The California Comprehensive Computer Data Access and Fraud Act (CCCDAFA) is designed to prosecute hackers. It forbids individuals that “accesses and without permission takes, copies, or makes use of any data from a computer, computer system, or computer network, or takes or copies any supporting documentation, whether existing or residing internal or external to a computer, computer system, or computer network,” with the intent to defraud, cause harm, or commit a crime. However, the law is not clear on who owns the data contained within the laptop. According to Delaware law, where the laptop was reportedly left, abandoned property belongs to the individual tasked with caring for it after reasonable attempts to contact the original owner have been made. But the law is less clear if that would limit ownership to the laptop itself, or if it would include the data contained within.

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“RFK Jr. abandoning the Democrats would all but ensure a defeat of the Brandon entity — and a brutal, landslide one at that..”

RFK Jr. Telegraphs Threat to Vacate Democrat Party (PJM)

The Democrat Party has a latent disaster on its hand vis a vis one RFK Jr. On the one hand, they are fully dedicated to sabotaging his campaign. Under no circumstances whatsoever will he be permitted to win the nomination. Even if he had 80%+ support from the electorate, the sick truth is that party leadership (influenced by the consultant and donor classes) would rather lose with Brandon than win with RFK Jr. because of what he’s liable to do to the Deep State and D.C. largesse were he ever to assume office. It would be a proverbial bloodbath for the administrative state and all of the grifters who feed on it. On the other hand, they need to keep RFK Jr. within the Democrat Party fold because if he were to go rogue and run third party — which he, frankly, should have been doing all along — it would be a veritable death knell for the Brandon entity’s prospects in 2024, which are wafer-thin as it is.

Whatever perceived threat Cornel West poses to Brandon’s re-election with his Green Party run, magnify that threat by 10x, 100x and you’re in the ballpark of what RFK Jr. would do to the party. It’s not outlandish to speculate that a strong third-party run by RFK Jr. might literally break the Democrat Party for years or possibly forever. That’s how sick of the party’s BS its own members, not to mention independents and non-voters (the largest, unserviced voting bloc in the country), are. RFK Jr. has already proven himself nearly bulletproof from relentless Democrat Party and corporate state media attacks — arguably on the same level in this regard as “Teflon” Don.

Here is RFK Jr., in an interview with Forbes, explaining what elaborate lengths the Democrat Party has gone to to rig the primary against him, outright threatening that he might drop his intra-party bid and turn his campaign into a third-party run:

“If the DNC is gonna make it, is gonna rig it so that it is simply impossible for anybody to challenge President Biden, and you know I need to look at other alternatives. Because I can’t go back to the people who support me, to my donors, and say you know, I’m just going to, I’m just in this to make a point, I need to show them a road to victory.” What is for now a threat — albeit apparently a sincere and credible threat — needs to be encouraged by everyone to evolve into reality. RFK Jr. abandoning the Democrats would all but ensure a defeat of the Brandon entity — and a brutal, landslide one at that — in 2024, which can be nothing but good news for all Americans, even delusional, loyal Democrats who don’t understand their own self-interest.

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Paul Craig Roberts: ” If Putin really wants to save lives, he should hurry up and win the war.”

Does Putin Realize The Danger In Projecting The Image Of A Weak Russia? (PCR)

Militarily and diplomatically weak EU countries, not one of which is capable of going to war, are stealing the cars, cell phones, and even soap of Russians who enter Europe as tourists. Why Russians want to be tourists in the EU that is aligned with the US and Ukraine against Russia is a mystery. Although Germany, for example, would be instantly defeated in a war with Russia, the German government feels secure in robbing Russians who come to Germany as tourists. How is it that such a weak country as Germany can feel secure robbing Russian citizens? Perhaps the answer is that by permitting a conflict to continue for 17 months against an impotent Ukraine, Putin has convinced Europe and the US that Russia is too weak to risk Western ire by winning in Ukraine.

Clearly the West believes this as we can see from humiliation after humiliation delivered to Putin and to Russia. Putin could not even attend the meeting of BRICS, his own creation, in South Africa without being arrested and turned over to the International Criminal Court. Clearly, no one is afraid of Putin and Russia. When you have enemies who do not fear you and even mock you, you can expect provocations to rise in intensity. You can also expect to demoralize your own people and your own army, thus encouraging your opponent to be more aggressive. This has been my concern since February 2022, not because I am on Russia’s side but because I believe the provocations will result in a wider, likely nuclear, war. Col. Douglas Macgregor has come to share my concern.

When asked recently in an interview to assess Putin as a war leader, Macgregor said that Putin is overly cautious and that there is concern in the Russian military that by allowing the conflict to drag on, Putin gives credibility to the propaganda that Russia is weak and this encourages more Western intervention. Prigozhin, the Wagner Group commander, had this opinion, and when he tried to get Putin’s attention he was falsely accused of attempting a coup and treason. It seems the Russian government and media invents false narratives just as does the West. Col. Macgregor says, “I am worried — if you don’t act quickly to end it, at some point, you’re in trouble — and he’s in trouble, his country is. So, I think there has to be an end to this — but you can’t end it at the negotiating table. If you march to the Dnieper River and send your tank columns into Kiev, then you have a shot at ending it. But if he sits where he is, I don’t know . . .”

Neither does Putin, but he continues to sit there all the while convincing the neoconservatives that Russia lacks the strength to launch an offensive even against a defeated Ukrainian army. Does Putin really want to convince the West that Russia is too weak to really fight or that he is too much of a goody two shoes compassionate liberal to be a war leader? It would be irresponsible to lead the West to such a dangerous conclusion. If Putin really wants to save lives, he should hurry up and win the war.

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Except for Poland.

EU States Tell Zelensky They Won’t Hand Over Draft Dodgers (RT)

The Czech Republic announced on Wednesday that it would not send military-age men who came as refugees back to Ukraine to be conscripted. Germany, Austria and Hungary have already made similar declarations. European conventions exclude extradition for things such as desertion or draft evasion, Justice Ministry spokesman Vladimir Repka told the outlet iDnes. However, he added that if Ukraine files individual extradition requests citing a specific criminal act they may have committed, Prague may give them consideration. Hungary has ruled out any extraditions outright. “We are not investigating any Ukrainian refugees to determine if they have been called up for military service. Hungary will not extradite them to Ukraine,” Deputy Prime Minister Zsolt Semjén told the outlet ATV on Wednesday.

“All refugees from Ukraine are safe in Hungary.” German officials who spoke to Deutsche Welle earlier this week said that Berlin did not intend to send draft-eligible refugees back, since desertion and draft evasion are not crimes under German law. There are over 123,000 Ukrainian men of military age who are in Germany as refugees, according to official estimates. Vienna was the first to refuse extradition of military-age men. There are about 14,000 potential draftees among the 101,000 Ukrainian refugees in Austria. “That would be a massive encroachment on our statehood, we would never do that,” a spokesman for the Interior Ministry told the outlet Exxpress on September 7.

On the other hand, Poland has already begun sending some Ukrainian men back, according to Hungarian media reports. A senior lawmaker from President Vladimir Zelensky’s ruling party said in late August that Ukraine might seek extradition of draft-dodgers from the EU. The government in Kiev recently announced another round of mobilization in order to make up battlefield losses, which Russian President Vladimir Putin estimated at over 70,000 in the past three months of heavy fighting. Zelensky fired all draft commissioners last month and ordered a review of all medical exemptions from military service, citing widespread corruption. New rules were adopted allowing for the conscription of people with mental disorders, chronic diseases, tuberculosis and HIV.

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How to make friends when you need them most.

China And India Have ‘Low Intellectual Potential’ – Zelensky Aide (RT)

The people leading India and China lack the ability to predict the long-term consequences of their policies, a senior aide to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has claimed. Mikhail Podoliak pointed to what he called “the problem of the modern world,” singling out India and China, in an interview with Ukrainian media on Tuesday. “The problem with these countries is that they do not analyze the consequences of their own moves. These countries, unfortunately, have low intellectual potential,” he said. Podoliak suggested that even though India has a lunar exploration program, it “does not mean that this nation understands what the modern world precisely is.”

The dismissive remarks were in the context of Beijing and New Delhi’s refusal to support Kiev in its conflict with Moscow. Podoliak complained that India, China and Türkiye were “profiting” from the war by maintaining trade with Russia. “Technically, it is in their national interests,” he acknowledged, before presenting his view of what would benefit China in the long-run. “China should be interested in Russia disappearing, because it is an archaic nation that drags China into unnecessary conflicts,” he claimed. “It would be in their interest now to distance themselves from Russia as far as possible, take all the resources it has, and take part of the Russian territory under their legal control. In fact, they will do that,” he added.

Following the interview, the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman urged Podoliak to clarify his remarks, when asked about them during a media briefing on Wednesday. Podoliak has a record of lashing out at nations, organizations and public figures seen as not sufficiently supportive of Kiev. Among his latest targets was Pope Francis, whom he had branded an “instrument of Russian propaganda” who “continues to reduce the influence of Catholicism in the word to zero.” The pontiff had encouraged Russian Catholics to cherish their nation’s historic legacy. The Ukrainian official also recently hit out at Elon Musk, who Podoliak claimed “enabled evil” by refusing Kiev’s request to use his Starlink communications system to launch drone attacks against the Russian Black Sea Fleet.

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“Even if we imagine that we will once again be friends with the West, that they will lift their sanctions, our businesses will not return to the West..”

Russia’s Pivot To The East Is ‘Irreversible’ (RT)

Russia is steadily reorienting trade and business cooperation toward Asia and away from the “static” West, Presidential Business Rights Commissioner Boris Titov told RIA Novosti on Wednesday. Speaking on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok, Titov stated that while the process initially started as a political response to Western sanctions against Moscow, it has since evolved and is now based entirely on economics. “Until recently, the process of Russia’s turn to the East was largely due to political reasons, but today everything has changed dramatically… Now we can say with certainty that this turn is irreversible, and it is based not on political, but primarily economic reasons,” the ombudsman said.

Titov claimed that while the Western economy is well-developed, it is already “too heavily invested and sluggish.” “In the East, on the other hand, everything is booming, moving forward rapidly, developing rapidly. And this applies not only to China, India, and Indonesia, but also to many other countries. They are the center of development today, not Europe, our main consumers of energy are there, finally,” the Russian official added. According to Titov, Russian entrepreneurs have already realized that doing business in the East is more lucrative.

“Even if we imagine that we will once again be friends with the West, that they will lift their sanctions, our businesses will not return to the West… It is much more interesting to enter the developing markets of the East and grow together than to remain static in the West,” Titov concluded. Russia has steadily developed ties with countries in the Global East and South in recent years, although the process has greatly accelerated due to the conflict in Ukraine and the ensuing Western sanctions against Moscow. In recent months, Russia has become the top supplier of oil to both China and India, as well as the largest European exporter to China overall.According to a recent survey by the state-owned Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VTsIOM), 67% of Russians approve of the eastward pivot, with only 11% against it.

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“By some estimates, that seabed may contain 1,000 times more rare earth elements than those below dry ground..”

The South China Sea’s Resource Wars (Frank)

You could call it a race to the bottom, with China leading the charge. In December 2022, that country unveiled its Ocean Drilling Ship, a deep sea mining (DSM) vessel the size of a battle cruiser set to be operational by 2024. Instead of weaponry, however, the ship is equipped with advanced excavation equipment capable of drilling at depths of 32,000 feet. On land, the Chinese already hold a virtual monopoly on metals considered vital to “green” energy development, including cobalt, copper, and lithium. Currently, the Chinese control 60% of the world’s supply of such “green” metals and are now eyeing the abundant resources that exist beneath the ocean’s floor as well. By some estimates, that seabed may contain 1,000 times more rare earth elements than those below dry ground.

It’s difficult to believe that devastating the ocean’s depths in search of minerals for electric batteries and other technologies could offer a sustainable way to fend off climate change. In the process, after all, such undersea mining is likely to have a catastrophic impact, including destroying biodiversity. Right now, it’s impossible to gauge just what sort of damage will be inflicted by such operations, since deep-sea mining is exempt from environmental impact assessments. (How convenient for those who will argue about how crucial they will be to producing a greener, more sustainable future.)

The U.N.’s High Seas Treaty, ratified in March 2023, failed to include environmental rules regulating such practices after China blocked any discussion of a possible moratorium on seabed harvesting. As of 2022, China holds five exploration contracts issued by the U.N.’s International Seabed Authority (ISA), allowing the Chinese to conduct tests and sample contents on the ocean floor. While that U.N. body can divvy up such contracts, they have no power to regulate the industry itself, nor the personnel to do so. This has scientists worried that unfettered deep-sea mining could cause irreparable damage, including killing sea creatures and destroying delicate habitats.

“We’ve only scratched the surface of understanding the deep ocean,” said Dr. Andrew Chin, a scientific adviser to the Australian-based Save Our Seas Foundation. “Science is just starting to appreciate that the deep sea is not an empty void but is brimming with wonderful and unique life forms. Deep sea ecosystems form an interconnected realm with mid and surface waters through the movement of species, energy flows, and currents. Not only will the nodule mining result in the loss of these species and damage deep sea beds for thousands of years, it will potentially result in negative consequences for the rest of the ocean and the people who depend on its health.”

Read more …

The biographer didn’t understand everything Musk told him. That leads to strange confusion.

Musk Gave Control Of Starlink To Pentagon – Biographer (RT)

Elon Musk gave the US military full control over a “certain amount of Starlink equipment” and can no longer influence how the system is being used to aid Kiev’s war effort, his biographer has unveiled, claiming the tech mogul wished to end his involvement in a scheme that could “cause a nuclear war.” Speaking to the Washington Post’s David Ignatius for an interview published on Wednesday, Musk biographer Walter Isaacson was asked about the billionaire’s decisions regarding Starlink, a constellation of satellites designed to provide global internet access and phone service which has also been used by the Ukrainian military.

Musk was initially “critically supportive” of Kiev and allowed near-full access to the Starlink system, according to Ignatius, who wondered why the entrepreneur eventually became “very nervous” and began restricting the range of the satellites, including in sensitive regions such as Crimea. “I’ve talked to him during this whole thing, and there was late one night, he said, ‘Why am I in this war?’ He said, ‘I, you know, created Starlink so people could chill and watch Netflix movies and play video games. I did not mean to create something that might cause a nuclear war,’” Isaacson replied. The author went on to say that Musk “decided to sell and give total control over a certain amount of Starlink equipment, Starlink services to the US military so that he no longer controls the geofencing,” adding that the SpaceX CEO “no longer controls the terms of use” for the satellites.

Isaacson said Musk had also developed a “military version of the Starlink” dubbed “Starshield,” suggesting that he hoped to pass off the project to the military. “I think that was his way of saying, ‘I got to get out of this. Even I don’t believe I should have this much power,’” the biographer continued. Musk has come under fire over his refusal to help Ukrainian forces attack Moscow’s Black Sea fleet in the Crimean port of Sevastopol – a revelation which only came to light in an excerpt from Isaacson’s biography published last week. The tech billionaire reportedly opted to prevent Kiev from using Starlink to guide naval drone strikes on Russian ships, fearing Russia might use nuclear weapons in retaliation to what he called a “mini-Pearl Harbor.”

While Ukrainian Digital Transformation Minister Mikhail Fedorov purportedly demanded that Musk turn the system back on, he was refused, with Musk explaining that Kiev “is now going too far and inviting strategic defeat” by attacking Crimea. The SpaceX CEO later claimed their services in the region around Crimea were not turned on at the time because his company was not allowed to provide coverage there due to US sanctions against Russia.

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“..the reason it was turned off was because the United States has sanctions against Russia, which includes Crimea, and we are not allowed to turn on connectivity to a sanctioned country without explicit permission..”

Note that Musk calls Crimea Russian…

‘Weaponized Govt Agencies’ “Don’t Wish Good Things For Me” – Elon Musk (ZH)

“I don’t know really what their issue is.” That’s how the world’s richest man describes the apparent ‘beef’ that the Biden administration has with him (apart from him calling them on their bullshit and enabling a free-speech platform for others to discuss non-approved narratives). Specifically, Elon Musk told the panel on the ‘All-In’ Podcast Summit yesterday: “…there does seem to be some significant increase in the weaponization of government and really sort of misuse of prosecutorial discretion in many areas… I think this is really a dangerous thing for there to be partisan politics with government agencies.” “Elon, does the Biden administration have it out for you, and why?” All-In host entrepreneur David Sacks asked Musk. “Ha. What ever gave you that idea?” Musk joked.

“I don’t think the whole administration has it out for me,” he added. “But I think there’s probably aspects of the administration… or aspects of interests aligned with President Biden who probably do not wish good things for me.” As a reminder, DOJ and SEC are currently investigating Tesla for allegedly allocating funds to a secret project to build Musk a house – which Musk has denied (and Walter Isaacson’s biography also confirms has been dropped). Additionally SpaceX is being investigated by DOJ for not hiring illegal immigrants (no, seriously). Then there’s the FAA nitpicking over SpaceX approval: “The only thing holding back the second planned Starship at this point is regulatory approval,” signifying that they are only waiting for FAA for their next launch.

Regarding Tesla, Musk focused on the company’s operations in China. He expressed concerns about China’s military capabilities, noting, “there will come a point in the not too distant future where China’s military strength in that region far exceeds America’s.” This point underlined the broader geopolitical considerations he takes into account in his business ventures, which brings us back to Starlink and the recent controversy over Ukraine demanding him enable the satellite web service for an attack on Crimea. Musk made it clear that Walter Isaacson – his biographer – had misunderstood the situation and that the initial decision to not allow access to Starlink around the Crimean border was due to sanctions from the Biden administration.

“Starlink have provided connectivity to Ukraine since the beginning of the war and as the Ukrainian government has said, Starlink was instrumental in the defense of Ukraine – although the media forgets to mention that.” Musk explains that “at the time [the attack] happened, the region around Crimea was turned off… and the reason it was turned off was because the United States has sanctions against Russia, which includes Crimea, and we are not allowed to turn on connectivity to a sanctioned country without explicit permission – which we did not have from the US government.”

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Work from home.

Great Reset Visionaries Stumble Upon An Unexpected Roadblock (Schlevogt)

The Center for the History of the Russian Diplomatic Service, a Moscow-based museum, proudly guards a mysterious gift that then Secretary of State of the United States Hillary Clinton handed over to her Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov, during a meeting in Geneva in 2009: a button to be pressed symbolically to reboot the relationship between the two countries. However, the gadget carried the Russian imprint peregruzka The Center for the History of the Russian Diplomatic Service, a Moscow-based museum, proudly guards a mysterious gift that then Secretary of State of the United States Hillary Clinton handed over to her Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov, during a meeting in Geneva in 2009: a button to be pressed symbolically to reboot the relationship between the two countries.

However, the gadget carried the Russian imprint peregruzka, meaning “overload,” instead of the deceptively similar word perezagruzka, which is the correct translation of “reset.” Likewise, recent transformative changes to the post-pandemic workplace around the globe seem to indicate that the much-touted Great Reset of capitalism increasingly is viewed as a burden too heavy to bear for humankind and an idea soon to be shelved in a virtual cabinet of curiosities. In June 2020, only months after the outbreak of the global COVID-19 pandemic, the World Economic Forum (WEF), in cooperation with the Prince of Wales, started the Great Reset Initiative. Its basic idea was to leverage the fluidity of the dramatic global health crisis to push through lasting fundamental changes to capitalism on a world-wide scale and thus avoid a rerun of the Great Depression.

Thinking about the aftermath of the pandemic, Klaus Schwab, the chief executive officer of the WEF, rejected incremental, ad hoc and stop-gap measures. Instead, he envisioned a systemic revolution, encompassing radical transformations in every country, every aspect of society and economy, and every industry. The seemingly all-inclusive Great Reset Transformation Map, which features several overlapping categories, shows that the vision also includes one aspect of the future of work, that is, redesigning jobs.

To achieve his lofty aspirations, which he described as “unprecedented,” Schwab promulgated the following three broad priorities of a Great Reset agenda, which partially builds on ideas that he had already suggested prior to the pandemic: (1) interventions to achieve fairer market outcomes, (2) investments to reach shared goals such as equality and sustainability, and (3) leveraging the “Fourth Industrial Revolution” for the public good, especially in health care and the social sphere. In a Foreign Affairs article published in 2015, Schwab conceptualized the Fourth Industrial Revolution as a set of radical breakthroughs benefiting humankind, achieved by a convergence of emerging technologies in the physical, digital and biological domains. It follows the preceding three industrial revolutions, which were triggered by mechanical, electrical and digital inventions and innovations respectively.

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“The “Muslim threat” was played to such an extent that the Attorney General said, “we need every tool available to us,” by which he meant getting rid of the US Constitution.”

Was There A “War On Terror” Or A War On The American People? (PCR)

In response to 9/11, Republican Attorney General John Ashcroft told an obedient Congress on a Wednesday to have a sweeping expansion of executive power and dramatic curtailment of American’s civil rights ready in bill form by the end of the week. As Matt Taibbi reminds us, “Congress quickly delivered with ‘roving’ wiretaps, warrantless searches, ‘trap and trace’ searches, law enforcement and intelligence access to grand jury information, use of FISA monitoring for non-foreign situations, reduction or elimination of predicate requirements for FBI investigations, and elimination of judicial review for most of these activities, among many other things in the USA PATRIOT Act. It all passed on October 26th.”

These measures had nothing whatsoever to do with fighting Muslim terror. To the contrary, these measures gave the government the power to terrorize Americans. Try to name Muslim terror attacks on America other than, if you believe the official narrative, 9/11. You can’t, because there aren’t any. Terror attacks on America were so non-existent that the FBI had to search for confused people and groups, convince them, enhanced with monetary bribes, to adopt a FBI prepared terror attack, and then arrest them before the attack could be attempted. The FBI always explained that “the public was never in danger” as control of the operation was in FBI’s hands. But the public is very much in danger from the police state measures that Taibbi lists. “Muslim terror” was so conspicuous by its absence that Homeland Security Director Janet Napolitano announced that Homeland Security was being refocused on domestic American “extremists,” which has come to mean Trump supporters against whom the US government is deploying the police state measures.

The first part of the “war on terror” was against Americans’ civil liberties. The second part of the war was on Israel’s opponents in the Middle East. In the case of Iraq and Libya entire countries were destroyed, millions killed and maimed, and displaced to Europe and the US with the strange result of importing Muslims who were said to be terrorists into the Homeland. Ask yourself how Americans managed to fall for the propaganda that the US was under widespread attack from Muslims. The “Muslim threat” was played to such an extent that the Attorney General said, “we need every tool available to us,” by which he meant getting rid of the US Constitution.

The foundation of the American police state was established on the basis of only one attack, 9/11, falsely attributed to Muslims. If the Muslims were really capable of outwitting the entirety of the US national security apparatus, why did they stop with the WTC? With such glorious success, why did they not continue? Why instead did the FBI have to create fake terror events in order to keep the public believing we were under attack? Notice how we are always “under attack.” If it is not Muslims, it is Covid, or Donald Trump.

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Problem
https://twitter.com/i/status/1702054366390235603

 

 

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Sep 132023
 
 September 13, 2023  Posted by at 9:07 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  41 Responses »


Michelangelo Pietà 1498 (he was 23 years old)

 

McCarthy Launches Biden Impeachment Inquiry (ZH)
Republicans Fear Giving Biden Popularity Boost With Impeachment Probe (Sp.)
Trump Charges Are Political Persecution – Putin (RT)
Trump Demands Judge in Jan. 6 Case Stand Down (Sp.)
Fani Willis Bankrolls Private Attorneys For Trump Prosecution (WE)
Tucker Tears Into Politicians’ “Betrayal Of American Democracy” (ZH)
Ever More Deadly Arms to Ukraine Reeks of Desperation – Scott Ritter (Sp.)
Africa Will Never Forget That The West Caged Its Children – Putin (RT)
Kiev Reiterates Grain Threat To Poland (RT)
Pocahontas Threatens Musk With Investigation For Blocking Ukrainian Attack (RT)
Nuland: US ‘Supports’ Ukraine Targeting ‘Russia’s Most Precious Assets’ (Sp.)
Ukraine Missile Attack in Sevastopol Leaves 24 People Injured (Sp.)
CIA Bribed Analysts To Change Wuhan Lab-Leak Conclusions (ZH)
France Bans iPhone Over Radiation Concerns (RT)
The Mackinder Strategic ‘Bible’ Reconsidered (Crooke)

 

 


Today Health Canada approved a Moderna fall booster for COVID-19 for all Canadians over the age of 6 months.

 

 


The new FDA approved covid shots were tested. On four rats. Yes, four rats. Four. Rats.

 

 

 

 

Tulsi Watters


https://twitter.com/i/status/1701362658329645541

 

 

 

 

 

 

Paxton Trial

 

 

Schumer

 

 

 

 

McCarthy sounds like a girl here. Maybe better not ask Trump what he thinks.

And Dave Collum: “Could you take a brief moment to release the 41,000 hours of J6 tapes? The longer you wait the worse you look…”

McCarthy Launches Biden Impeachment Inquiry (ZH)

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Tuesday announced that the House will open an impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden over a variety of alleged crimes, skipping a formal House vote he had previously teased. According to McCarthy, Reps. James Comer and Jim Jordan will spearhead it. “Biden used his official office to coordinate with Hunter Biden’s business partners, about Hunter’s role in Burisma – the Ukrainian energy company,” said McCarthy, adding “it appears that the president’s family has been offered special treatment by Biden’s own administration.”

Senate RINOs are downplaying an impeachment inquiry against perhaps the most corrupt president in US history, citing a ‘distraction’ from 2024 election issues such as the economy and border security. In truth, they’re nothing more than uniparty shills protecting their preferred candidate at any cost against the return of the highly disruptive Orange Man Bad. “It really comes to how do you prioritize your time? I don’t know of anybody who believes Chuck Schumer (D-NY) will take it up and actually have a trial and convict a sitting president,” said Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) a member of the Senate GOP leadership team, in a comment to The Hill, adding that House Republicans can already investigate Biden without launching a formal impeachment inquiry.

“Since they got the majority, they got the chairmen of the various committees, they could do all of that now without going to a formal inquiry,” he continued. “Members of the House don’t really care what I think. All I can tell you, it’s unlikely to be successful in the Senate. “Rather than doing something they know is unlikely to end the way they would like, maybe they want to emphasize other things.” Cornyn was joined by GOP Whip John Thune (SD) and Marco Rubio (FL), the latter of whom suggested that attempting to impeach Biden would be frivolous, and “should generally be avoided for the interest of the country.”

“It can’t become routine,” Rubio continued, adding “There are countries like Peru that routinely now impeach whoever the president is, and it’s become almost a national sport.” Yes Marco, the sitting US President is suspected of taking bribes from a Ukrainian oligarch in exchange for abusing his position as then-VP, and his son – with no practicable skills in any art – appears to have been his family’s international bag man for more of the same, but let’s not make this into a ‘national sport.’

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“Biden’s either going to have to cut a deal and promise not to run again, or perhaps resign, but we are at the beginning of this process..”

Republicans Fear Giving Biden Popularity Boost With Impeachment Probe (Sp.)

US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) announced on Tuesday the launching of an impeachment inquiry into US President Joe Biden. The leading Republican said there were “serious and credible allegations” about Biden’s conduct and the alleged “culture of corruption” surrounding the Biden family’s foreign business dealings. At the center of the issue is the president’s son, Hunter Biden, long the subject of journalist investigations and Republican denunciations, and questions about Joe Biden’s relationship to Hunter’s business dealings, especially during Joe’s time as US vice president and since he became president in 2021. Republicans have for years promised to launch such an inquiry once they won a majority in the US House of Representatives again, but that majority was reached in early January following the November 2022 midterm elections.

McCarthy became House speaker at that time after hammering out a nebulous set of promises with a pro-Trump faction of the House GOP Caucus – a faction that is increasingly upset with his performance. Democrats have accused Republicans of giving in to the agenda of former US President Donald Trump, who was impeached in 2019 on accusations he abused his power by pressuring Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to reopen a probe into the Bidens, including claims that in 2016, then-VPOTUS Biden forced Kiev’s prosecutor-general into closing a previous investigation of Hunter’s business dealings in Ukraine. Ted Rall, a syndicated editorial cartoonist, opinion columnist, graphic novelist, author, and co-host of The Final Countdown, told Radio Sputnik’s Political Misfits on Tuesday that while some elder GOP lawmakers are hesitant for the moment over fears they might accidentally help Biden’s reputation ahead of the 2024 election, “Republicans will soon see that this is going to be to their advantage.”

“I think a lot of Republicans are suffering from Clinton Hangover Impeachment Syndrome. This didn’t go well for the Republicans in 1998, [former US President] Bill Clinton left office wildly popular, and they’re worried that something similar could happen. The only thing is: it’s not 1998, it’s a different world now,” he said, noting that when it came to Clinton’s impeachment, the facts were clear. “Here, most liberal Democrats and many moderates – or, for that matter, everyone who’s not a news junkie – doesn’t really know or has been following the story of this Hunter Biden laptop, which has been carefully siloed as a new ‘Benghazi malarkey’ as Biden would say. But that’s not true,” Rall said. “Beyond what McCarthy may or may not want, as the inquiry proceeds, it’s going to be impossible not to move forward with hearings simply because there are too many actionable facts.”

“The call for impeachment, under the most basic definition of the term in the Constitution, which specifically references bribery – I think they’re going to have to impeach him,” Rall asserted. “I think even the Republican senators are going to warm up to it and I think if all the facts are ultimately heard, President Biden’s either going to have to cut a deal and promise not to run again, or perhaps resign, but we are at the beginning of this process,” which he said “has no place to go but ‘down’ for President Biden.” Rall noted there was “a lot to get to the bottom” of in the case.“If my son sells me as a brand, then collects money by doing that, are you effectively bribing me? Especially if I’m 80 years old and I care deeply about my son’s finances and his ability to carry on after I’m gone? That’s a question I think hasn’t been answered and I think we need to answer,” he explained.

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“As for the persecution of Trump, well, in today’s conditions, in my view, that’s a good thing. Because it reveals the rotten American political system, which should not be able to claim it can teach others about democracy. “Everything that is happening to Trump is the political persecution of a political rival. That is what it is. And it is happening in the eyes of the US public and the whole world. They have exposed their domestic problems. In this sense, if they are trying to fight us, it is good because it shows, as they used to say in Soviet times, the beastly appearance of American imperialism, its beastly snarling grimace.”

Trump Charges Are Political Persecution – Putin (RT)

The numerous criminal charges against former US President Donald Trump amount to persecution and showcase the “rot” in the American political system, Russian President Vladimir Putin has stated. The US in its current state “cannot claim the right to teach others democracy,” the Russian leader said on Tuesday during a panel discussion at the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok. “The things that are happening to Trump are persecution of a political competitor… That is what it is. And it is done in the full view of the US public and the entire world,” he added. The controversy is beneficial to Russia in the sense that it “exposes” Washington “for what it is,” according to Putin.

The US government chose to be hostile to Moscow and has propagandized its population into perceiving it as such, he argued. “[The US] demonstrates what they called in Soviet times ‘the bestial scowl of imperialism’,” he joked. Moscow does not expect any substantial change in US foreign policy vis-a-vis Russia, regardless of who takes the White House after next year’s election, the president said. “[Trump] was accused of having a special relation with Russia, which is total nonsense and bulls**t. But he was the president who introduced the most sanctions against Russia,” Putin noted.

The American elites predominantly perceive Russia as an existential enemy, Putin believes. The country also has friends in the US, who want good relations and share Russia’s views on traditional values, the president added, but those voices are being suppressed. Since leaving office, Trump has been charged with numerous crimes at both the federal and state level, ranging from election tampering to inciting the January 6 Capitol riot to financial improprieties. The businessman-turned-politician, who is considered the frontrunner for the Republican nomination for presidency, has said that his legal woes amount to a “witch hunt” by his opponents.

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She’s hated him for years, laments the fact that he’s walking around free.

Trump Demands Judge in Jan. 6 Case Stand Down (Sp.)

Former President Donald Trump has filed a motion in a Washington, DC, court demanding Judge Tanya Chutkan recuse and disqualify herself from his January 6 criminal case, court documents showed. “President Donald J. Trump, through undersigned counsel, respectfully moves to recuse and disqualify the Honorable Tanya S. Chutkan,” Trump’s attorneys said in the court document on Monday. The motion cites what Trump alleges is Chutkan’s compromised impartiality as cause for recusal. “Although Judge Chutkan may genuinely intend to give President Trump a fair trial — and may believe that she can do so — her public statements unavoidably taint these proceedings,” Trump attorney John F. Lauro wrote in the motion.

“The public will reasonably and understandably question whether Judge Chutkan arrived at all of her decisions in this matter impartially,” the motion said, adding that “the law and the overwhelming public interest in the integrity of this historic proceeding require recusal.” US law dictates that judges recuse themselves from any legal case in which they have a personal bias, potential prejudice, or their impartiality could be “reasonably” questioned. A 1994 Supreme Court ruling determined that only in rare cases are judges ever forced out of a legal case; in fact, it must be proved the official demonstrates “deep seated favoritism or antagonism that would make fair judgment impossible.”

Chutkan has given both sides in the case until Thursday to respond to the motion, with the Trump camp given until Sunday to issue its subsequent reply. Trump is presently facing multiple indictments ranging from alleged fraudulent business practices, mishandling classified documents and efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election. The former president has repeatedly voiced his innocence in each case, underscoring that legal filings are part of a larger political attack intended to shutter his chances at serving a second term in office.

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Taxpayer money.

“..paid massive sums to private sector attorneys for their services..”

“..it avoids the statutory requirements for the appointment of assistant district attorneys, who are paid a fixed salary, and also avoids the administration of an oath of office..”

Fani Willis Bankrolls Private Attorneys For Trump Prosecution (WE)

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis has paid massive sums to private sector attorneys for their services, and a portion of those relate to investigating and prosecuting former President Donald Trump, according to county records. Nathan Wade, Willis’s lead prosecutor in the case, has raked in more than half a million dollars from the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office from January 2022 to August 2023, according to a payment history. Christopher Campbell, Wade’s colleague at Wade & Campbell Firm, has been paid $116,670 from April 2021 to August 2023, the same records show. Terrence Bradley, a former colleague of Wade’s, was paid $74,480 from May 2021 to June 2022, according to the records.

Wade, a defense attorney who can bill by the hour, was hand-picked by Willis roughly two years ago to serve as special prosecutor in the Trump case. Wade is a former Cobb County fill-in municipal court judge who ran for Cobb County Superior Court and was defeated in 2012, 2014, and 2016. Willis chose Wade over career prosecutors who work on salaries, and while the legalities of that have not been questioned at this stage, some, like Phil Holloway, an Atlanta-based attorney for more than two decades, have found the use of Wade to be “unorthodox.” “It’s certainly unorthodox and appears to be a cash cow for any lawyer paid by the hour,” Holloway said. “I’ve been practicing criminal law in Georgia for 24 years, and I’ve never seen such an arrangement.”

One of the co-defendants, former Georgia GOP Chairman David Shafer, highlighted in a court filing on Thursday the hefty payments to private prosecutors, asking for Judge Scott McAfee to schedule a hearing “regarding improper contact by special prosecutor’s law firm.” [..] Shafer’s attorney in the court filing said it also violated an “anti-contact” rule, noting that “the harassing, or mocking and intimidating nature of the firm’s communication with Mr. Shafer causes grave injury to the appearance of fairness and propriety of this proceeding.” [..] Holloway observed that Wade could skirt the typical obligations of public servants while working as outsourced counsel. “For starters, it avoids the statutory requirements for the appointment of assistant district attorneys, who are paid a fixed salary, and also avoids the administration of an oath of office,” Holloway said. “The oath of office is intended to protect the public from malfeasance by public officials and carries a criminal penalty if violated.”

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Sounds like 2028.

Tucker Tears Into Politicians’ “Betrayal Of American Democracy” (ZH)

In a brief clip dropped last night, Tucker Carlson rages (in his inimitable manner) that the current system of governance in the US does not genuinely reflect the majority’s will but benefits a small group of people with power. “Most governments are run by a small group of people for their own benefit without reference to what the majority wants,” he says. Carlson highlights, based on public opinion polls as evidence, that there is often a disconnect between what the people want and what their leaders prioritize: “Take a look at the latest Gallup poll, pick a poll. What are the top 10 issues for people in the United States and then compare those to the priorities of your leaders.”

The former Fox News host takes aim at Governors Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan and Greg Abbott of Texas as case examples of this disconnect. Regarding Whitmer, who he calls a “low IQ lunatic”, Carlson says her priorities are not in line with the majority of her constituents, specifically regarding social issues like “misgendering”: “The things that people care about, Gretchen Whitmer couldn’t care less about.” Abbott, who Carlson calls a “liar, and betrayer of your own people”, is accused of not taking significant action on illegal immigration, despite having the resources to do so:

“Don’t you have a National Guard? Why don’t you seal the Border? Oh, it’s very complicated. No, it’s not.” Carlson concludes that this deviation from public will is a betrayal of American democracy. “It’s not just frustrating; it’s a betrayal of the core promise of the country, which is the people rule,” he proclaims; suggesting that the current situation represents a “criminal act,” and, in what some have suggested sounded the most like a campaign/stump speech, urges the audience to reconsider their belief that a majority vote will automatically translate into action or law.

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“..anybody who looks at the situation on the ground in Ukraine knows that Ukraine is losing, Russia is winning. And literally there’s nothing that can be done to prevent a Russian victory..”

Ever More Deadly Arms to Ukraine Reeks of Desperation – Scott Ritter (Sp.)

Over the past year-and-a-half, the US and its NATO allies have adopted a cautious, “two steps forward, one step back” approach to arming Kiev, first assuring that various weapons (be it cluster munitions and long-range cruise missiles or tanks and F-16 fighter jets) would not be sent, citing the danger of escalation tensions with Russia, and then announcing their delivery weeks or months later. “The Biden administration seems to be going through a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde-type phase when it comes to the nature of the weapons that it’s willing to provide to Ukraine,” Scott Ritter, a veteran former US Marine Corps intelligence officer, UN weapons inspector, and military analyst, told Sputnik. “A year ago, the Biden administration was very reticent about providing certain categories of weapons out of fear to create the potential of an escalation between the United States, between NATO and Russia over Ukraine.

“The last thing the United States wanted, or so the Biden administration said, was a direct war with Russia.” “Today, all of those inhibitions seem to have been swept away. We see the United States providing M1 Abrams tanks. We see the United States authorizing the delivery of F-16 fighters. And now the United States is considering to provide Ukraine with the ATACMS long-range missile system or the guided multiple launch rocket system, a 45-mile range rocket system delivered by the HIMARS system that has extreme accuracy and could deliver cluster munitions. This, of course, follows on the heels of the decision by the Biden administration made earlier this year to provide Ukraine with the cluster variant of the 155-millimeter artillery shell,” Ritter said.

Desperation over sobering battlefield realities and a desire to “harm Russia,” rather than hopes that the new long-range weapons could turn the tide in the conflict, are the main motivators behind the Biden administration’s escalation strategy, the observer believes. “The Ukrainians, according to Russian President Vladimir Putin, have suffered 71,000 casualties over the course of the last four months in a failed counteroffensive effort. And there’s nothing about the nature of these weapons that would improve Ukraine’s chances on the battlefield. These weapons that are being provided are being provided to provide Ukraine with the potential of doing harm to Russia. The ATACMS missiles being provided, simply put, to strike the Crimea Bridge, to destroy that bridge, to enable Ukraine to strike targets deep in the Russian rear area – airfields, command posts, logistics. This is a dramatic escalation of the conflict,” Ritter stressed.

“Why is the Biden administration doing this? Frankly speaking, it’s out of an act of desperation. Look, anybody who looks at the situation on the ground in Ukraine knows that Ukraine is losing, Russia is winning. And literally there’s nothing that can be done to prevent a Russian victory. The provision of ATACMS rockets, the GMLRS rocket system isn’t going to change the outcome on the battlefield. What it will do is provide Ukraine the opportunity to inflict more harm on Russia,” and that, Washington may be hoping, will put political pressure on Moscow domestically, the observer explained.

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“As late as 1957, “people from Africa were taken to Europe in cages… You can’t watch that without tears. Children sitting in cages, displayed for everyone to see..”

Africa Will Never Forget That The West Caged Its Children – Putin (RT)

Russian President Vladimir Putin remarked on Tuesday that African nations will always remember the dark chapter of Western colonial oppression when European powers trafficked children from the continent, putting them on display in cages. He also noted that these same countries are trying to push their former dominions into indentured servitude. Speaking at the plenary session of the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok, Putin said he was sure it would not be too difficult for Russia to restore close relations with Africa to the level of the Soviet era when Moscow provided the continent with ample economic aid. The Russian leader argued that African countries remember Moscow’s help in the struggle for independence and that Moscow had never acted as a colonizer.

“Our cooperation has always been based on either mutual grounds or the desire to help,” he said. However, Putin noted that these countries remember not only Soviet aid but also Western ruthlessness. As late as 1957, “people from Africa were taken to Europe in cages… You can’t watch that without tears. Children sitting in cages, displayed for everyone to see,” Putin recalled. “No one in Africa will ever forget it.” The Russian president said the West has not abandoned its subjugation attempts. “Even now, they are trying to boss around and pursue their generally neo-colonial policies,” Putin said, explaining that Western countries have imposed trillions of dollars worth of loans on the region. The West has concocted a credit system with African countries which “by definition… does not allow them to pay back their loans. These are not credit relations; this is some kind of [punitive] indemnity,” he added.

However, Russia adheres to a different approach, which gives it an advantage in fostering ties with its partners worldwide, Putin argued. Last week, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov pointed out that African countries are ready to talk with their Western counterparts. However, the latter should not expect spectacular results if they reduce dialogue to “patting on the back” while failing to address the continent’s “pressing needs.” To foster closer ties with the region, Russia hosted a landmark Russia-Africa forum in St. Petersburg this summer that produced many bilateral agreements in various fields. Dozens of African delegations also attended it despite what Moscow described as “unprecedented pressure from the West” to skip the summit.

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Poland is one of Ukraine’s staunchest supporters. But it won’t kill its own farmers.

Kiev Reiterates Grain Threat To Poland (RT)

Kiev does not want to harm Polish farmers, but it will lobby for its right to export grain into the EU nation under World Trade Organization rules, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denis Shmygal has declared. On Tuesday, the chair of the Ukrainian government reiterated Kiev’s warning that it would seek arbitration if Poland maintained a ban on imports. The current temporary restriction, which was imposed by the EU in May, is set to expire on Friday. “We have no intention of harming Polish farmers,” he stated on X (formerly Twitter). Warsaw’s stated policy of keeping the ban in place would be a “violation of trade law in the interest of political populism before the elections,” he added. Poland is set to hold a general election in October, with the ruling Law and Justice party seeking a third term at the helm.

Earlier in the day, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki pledged to make sure that Ukrainian grain would not “flood” his nation, causing distress to local producers. That will be the case regardless of what the EU decides, he assured. When asked about Shmygal’s remark by local media outlets, government spokesman Piotr Muller said Warsaw would maintain the embargo at the national level if its appeal to the EU to renew the ban failed. The Polish government adopted a formal message to the European Commission arguing its case on Tuesday. Brussels’ ban had de facto legitimized prohibitions imposed nationally by Poland, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, and Slovakia. Hungary, Bulgaria, and Romania have said they intend to reimpose national bans if the EU prohibition expires.

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Do your homework first?!

Pocahontas Threatens Musk With Investigation For Blocking Ukrainian Attack (RT)

US Senator Elizabeth Warren has called on Congress to investigate Elon Musk over his refusal to enable a Ukrainian drone attack on the Russian naval fleet in Crimea. Despite condemnation in Washington, Musk has defended his decision to cut satellite service to the Ukrainian military. “The Congress needs to investigate what’s happened here and whether we have adequate tools to make sure foreign policy is conducted by the government and not by one billionaire,” Warren told reporters at the US Capitol on Monday. Musk and other Big Tech CEOs are due to meet with US lawmakers to discuss artificial intelligence on Wednesday. However, the subject of the hearing has been overshadowed by news that Musk intervened last year to prevent six Ukrainian naval drones from hitting Russian ships at the Crimean port of Sevastopol.

The Ukrainian military had been using SpaceX’s Starlink satellite internet service for communications and guidance since the beginning of the conflict with Russia. When Musk learned that the drones were en route to Sevastopol, he ordered SpaceX engineers to shut down the service within 100km of the Russian peninsula, CNN reported on Thursday, quoting an upcoming biography of the billionaire. As a result, the drones “lost connectivity and washed ashore harmlessly,” the report claimed. Ukrainian Digital Transformation Minister Mikhail Fedorov then begged Musk to turn the signal back on via text messages, but Musk refused.

“If I had agreed to their request, then SpaceX would be explicitly complicit in a major act of war and conflict escalation,” the billionaire explained last week, adding that he never allowed the service to be activated near Crimea in the first place. Musk’s explanation caused outrage in Kiev, with President Vladimir Zelensky’s top aide accusing the SpaceX CEO of “committing evil.” In the US, CNN anchor Jake Tapper argued on Sunday that Musk had “effectively sabotaged” an American ally, and asked US Secretary of State Antony Blinken if he should face “repercussions” for thwarting the attack.

Blinken refused to condemn Musk, but several members of Congress have spoken out against the billionaire. Musk “cannot have the last word when it comes to national security,” Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Jack Reed told reporters on Monday. At the time of the thwarted attack, Musk was bankrolling Ukraine’s access to the Starlink network. The Pentagon has since stepped in to partly fund the program, and Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall said on Monday that future contracts between the military and private firms like SpaceX will likely include “assurances” that these technologies can be used for offensive purposes.

https://twitter.com/i/status/1701424181580124577

Elon
https://twitter.com/i/status/1701648627297362426

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”..Nuland’s words showed that this was “no longer about Ukraine,” but about “an undeclared hot war with Russia.”

Nuland: US ‘Supports’ Ukraine Targeting ‘Russia’s Most Precious Assets’ (Sp.)

US Acting Deputy Secretary of State and Russophobic hawk Victoria Nuland appears to have let slip that the Biden administration supports Ukraine’s strikes targeting Russian territory. In a video clip circulating on social media, Nuland, who just recently visited Ukraine’s capital, can be heard saying that one “axis” of Washington’s strategy in it proxy war with Moscow in Ukraine is to “put some of Russia’s most precious assets at risk.” This comes amid reports that Washington will be sending long-range Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMS) to the Kiev regime. However, earlier in September, a Pentagon official told Sputnik no decision had been made to supply Ukraine with ATACMS.

According to US media, the Defense Department has warned that its own ATACMS arsenal is relatively small, and the missiles are already deployed to other areas, such as the Korean Peninsula, and therefore their transfer to Ukraine would jeopardize US combat readiness in other regions. In response to the clip on social media, users commented that Victoria Nuland appeared intent on unleashing a “nuclear war” – something that the career civil servant along with US President Joe Biden and senior White House and State Department officials have been repeatedly accused of. Netizens remarked that Washington has “never shown willingness to talk meaningfully with Moscow,” and warned that Nuland’s words showed that this was “no longer about Ukraine,” but about “an undeclared hot war with Russia.”

Others on social media recalled Nuland’s role in the 2014 coup in Ukraine, when the country’s democratically elected government collapsed, and a pro-Western regime was installed. Then-Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland is remembered for strolling the streets of Kiev with Geoffrey Pyatt, the then-US ambassador, handing out free cookies. Later, in February 2014, on the eve of the Euromaidan coup, in a telephone conversation she famously quipped, as per a leaked call, “Yats is the guy!” referring to Arseniy Yatsenyuk, a politician who got less than seven percent of the vote in the 2010 Ukrainian presidential election, but would be selected as the first prime minister of the post-coup government.

Nuland has been one of the most avid proponents of Kiev massively hitting Russian military installations in Crimea, considering them to be legitimate targets, as per her remarks on February 16, 2023. Crimea became a Russian region after a referendum was held there in March 2014 following a coup in Ukraine. The Russian leadership has repeatedly stated that Crimean residents democratically, in full compliance with international law and the UN Charter, voted for reunification with Russia. Furthermore, the United States considers it important to provide Kiev with the military “of the future,” Nuland had said at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace think tank.

In response, Igor Girenko, press secretary of the Russian embassy in the US, said Nuland’s comment that the United States supports Ukraine targeting Russian military installations in Crimea shows Washington’s direct involvement in the Ukraine conflict. After both Washington and London agreed to supply the Zelensky regime with longer-range missiles, they claimed that Kiev had promised not to attack Russian soil with them. However, as Kiev’s counteroffensive falters, the risk of a “desperation” attack outside the Donbass is growing, pundits told Sputnik.

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“..intended to serve as psychological crutch and do not pose a meaningful military intiative.”

Ukraine Missile Attack in Sevastopol Leaves 24 People Injured (Sp.)

Russian air defenses repelled an overnight attack by the Ukrainian armed forces on the city of Sevastopol in Crimea, Governor Mikhail Razvozhayev said early Wednesday. Razvozhayev indicated that he is on scene near the area where a fire broke out in the city’s industrial district, detailing that operational services were on site at the Sevastopol shipyard. The governor added that 24 people sustained injuries as a result of the missile strike, four of whom were identified as being in “moderate condition.” The Sevastopol official further said there is no threat to civilian facilities as a result of the fire. The situation in the air continues to be monitored as all operational services remain on standby, he went on to underscore.

A subsequent release issued by the Russian Ministry of Defense stated the overnight strike by the Kiev regime included the use of 10 cruise missile and three drone boats. “Tonight, the Ukrainian armed forces conducted a strike against the shipyard named after Ordzhonikidze in the city of Sevastopol using 10 cruise missiles and attacked a group of ships of the Black Sea Fleet during the movement in the sea using drone boats,” the ministry said. “Air defenses destroyed seven cruise missiles, and the Vasily Bykov patrol ship destroyed all drone boats. As a result of cruise missiles hitting the shipyard, two ships, which were in repair, were damaged.”

Over the last several months, Ukraine has repeatedly carried out drones strikes against Russian territory, more recently in the face of its failed counteroffensive. The Russian government has referred to the repeat drone attacks as a “nuisance” as experts have stressed that such efforts are intended to serve as psychological crutch and do not pose a meaningful military intiative.

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“The CIA bribing CIA officers to hide the CIA’s work on COVID is simply the most CIA thing you’ll ever hear!”

CIA Bribed Analysts To Change Wuhan Lab-Leak Conclusions (ZH)

A ‘senior-level’ CIA whistleblower has come forward to allege that the agency bribed analysts to change their opinion that Covid-19 most likely originated in a lab in Wuhan, China, according to the NY Post. The whistleblower told House committee leaders that his agency ‘ tried to pay off six analysts who found SARS-CoV-2 likely originated in a Wuhan lab if they changed their position and said the virus jumped from animals to humans,’ according to a Tuesday letter from the chairmen of two House subcommittees investigating the pandemic response and US intelligence, Brad Wenstrup (R-OH) and Mike Turner (R-OH). The pair have requested all documents, communications and pay info from the CIA’s Covid-19 Discovery Team by Sept. 26.

“According to the whistleblower, at the end of its review, six of the seven members of the Team believed the intelligence and science were sufficient to make a low confidence assessment that COVID-19 originated from a laboratory in Wuhan, China,” reads the letter from the House panel chairmen. “The seventh member of the Team, who also happened to be the most senior, was the lone officer to believe COVID-19 originated through zoonosis. “The whistleblower further contends that to come to the eventual public determination of uncertainty, the other six members were given a significant monetary incentive to change their position,” the letters continue, adding that the analysts were “experienced officers with significant scientific expertise.”

Wenstrup and Turner also asked for documents and communications between the CIA and other federal agencies, including the State Department, FBI, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Energy Department. In a separate letter, the House committee leaders identified former CIA Chief Operating Officer Andrew Makridis as having “played a central role” in the COVID investigation and asked him to sit for a transcribed interview. -NY Post In June, the US Intelligence Community declassified a 10-page report on COVID origins, in which it found “biosafety concerns” and “genetic engineering” taking place in Wuhan, but that most of its “agencies assess that SARS-CoV-2 was not genetically engineered.”

As the Post points out, however, several scientists at the WIV fell ill in late 2019 with symptoms “consistent with but not diagnostic of COVID-19,” according to the intelligence report, which concluded that the CIA and another intelligence agency “remain unable to determine the precise origin of the COVID-19 pandemic, as both hypotheses rely on significant assumptions or face challenges with conflicting reporting.” ot all former US intelligence officials agree with the declassified report – such as former DNI John Ratcliffe, who told Congress that the “lab leak theory” was the “only” credible explanation for the pandemic. “My informed assessment as a person with as much access as anyone to our government’s intelligence … has been and continues to be that a lab leak is the only explanation credibly supported by our intelligence, by science and by common sense,” he told the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic in a hearing.

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Why only France? Why only Apple?

France Bans iPhone Over Radiation Concerns (RT)

Apple must withdraw all iPhone 12 models from the French market immediately, the National Frequency Agency (ANFR) announced on Tuesday, accusing the popular smartphone of emitting far more electromagnetic radiation than European Union regulations allow. “The ANFR expects Apple to deploy all available means to put an end to the non-compliance. Failure to act will result in the recall of equipment that has already been made available to consumers,” the agency said. According to the regulator, tests at an accredited laboratory revealed that the phone exceeded the specific absorption rate (SAR) value mandated by the EU, which is four watts-per-kilogram (W/kg), when held in hand or in a trouser pocket. The “body” SAR, when the phone is in a jacket pocket or a bag at least 5mm away, was within the 2 W/kg limit, however.

Apple must immediately stop the sale of iPhone 12 models and get ANFR approval if it makes updates to them to ensure compliance, the regulator added. ANFR inspectors have been authorized to check “all distribution channels in France” for the banned device, starting Tuesday. The iPhone 12 was introduced in October 2020 and has continued to be popular due to a lower price point than the subsequent models. Apple says the model has a SAR of 0.99 W/kg when measured by the EU standard. Earlier on Tuesday, the California-based Apple announced the iPhone 15 line of devices, featuring the USB-C connector in order to comply with an EU mandate adopted in 2022.

The US Federal Communications Commission has yet to comment on the French announcement. The FCC has a SAR limit of 1.6 W/kg. sFrance’s radiation crackdown comes after several months of bad news for Apple. Last week it was reported that China has banned government employees from bringing iPhones or any other foreign devices into the office or using them for work purposes. Russian officials were advised to stop using iPhones in July, while the state military industry banned them outright, citing security concerns. Later that month, a class action suit in the UK accused the US-based company of monopolistic behavior regarding fees charged by the app store.

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“..absent Ukraine, Russia would never become the heartland power; but with Ukraine, Russia can and would..”

The Mackinder Strategic ‘Bible’ Reconsidered (Crooke)

In 1997, Zbig Brzezinski, the original ‘driver’ behind the making of Afghanistan as a quagmire of ‘mud’ into which Russia was to be dragged, wrote his celebrated book, The Grand Chessboard. It was a work that ‘forever’ embedded the Mackinder doctrine of ‘he who controls the Asian heartland controls the world’ into the U.S. zeitgeist. Tellingly, its subtitle was American Primacy and Its Geostrategic Imperatives. Brzezinski had already written in his book that absent Ukraine, Russia would never become the heartland power; but with Ukraine, Russia can and would. Thus, Mackinder’s doctrine, ‘He who controls the heartland’ dictum, was codified into U.S. ‘cannon law’ – never to permit a united heartland. And Ukraine became seen as the hinge around which heartland power revolved.

Brzezinski further ordained that this ‘Grand Game of Chess’ was to be one of pure U.S. primacy: “No, no one else plays”, he insisted; it is a game purely for one. Once a chess piece is moved; ‘we’ (the U.S.) simply turn the board the other way around – and move the other side’s chess pieces (for ‘them’). There is ‘no other’ in this game”, Brzezinski warned. This is today’s dilemma – It is so long since Brzezinski originally formulated the Mackinder notion, that classical diplomacy has become etiolated. It was Henry Kissinger however, that gave Mackinder its celebrated twist: ‘He who controls money controls the world’ was to become the dollar and banking financialised hegemony. But, Kissinger, in this, was wrong from the ‘get go’. It always has been: ‘He who has manufacturing capacity, raw materials, food, energy (human as well as fossil) and sound money can change the world’.

But Kissinger simply ignored those adjunct conditions, and based the U.S. instead in the creation of a global ‘spider’s web of weaponised dollars (touch it, and the sanctions gossamer poisons you). Additionally, this system was multiplied through Wall Street parsing out access to trillions in newly created money only to the compliant. Kissinger did, however, evolve the doctrine of ‘triangulation’ in a nod to Mackinder: The U.S. should seek to ally with either Russia versus China, or be with China, in opposition to Russia. But never to let China and Russia conjoin against the West. The heartland must always be fractured. These ‘rules’ are imprinted on Washington’s mental circuits. Yet the notions that underpin them have little validity today. Land mass, militarised states (heartland Asia) versus the naval powers (the Atlanticists) hardly reflects today’s more abstract instruments of power.

[..] The present conflict in Ukraine has underlined the deficiencies in hegemonic power that specifically arise from a neglected manufacturing base. Mackinder, were he here today, might thus need to adjust his model, distinguishing between the land that is ‘outside’ the one set of economic policies (the BRICS-led Asian, African and global Southern bloc), and that which is ‘inside’: i.e. within a ‘coastal’ debt-led, consumerist paradigm.

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Fluoride

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Sep 022023
 
 September 2, 2023  Posted by at 8:56 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  38 Responses »


William-Adolphe Bouguereau La naissance de Vénus 1879

 

Happenings Await (Jim Kunstler)
White House Preparing For Biden Impeachment – NBC (RT)
Biden Dragged US Into Proxy War With Russia That Moscow Is Winning – MTG (Sp.)
Rise of BRICS ‘Devastating’ For US – MTG (RT)
Nikki Haley Calls US Senate ‘Most Privileged Nursing Home In The Country’ (G.)
Conflict Should Be Transferred To ‘Russian Territory’ – Ukraine Spy Chief (RT)
US To Send Depleted Uranium Munitions To Ukraine – Reuters (RT)
How Much Do Mercenaries Make in Ukraine? (Sp.)
Only 10% of Western Firms Have Left Russia – Austria (RT)
African Coups Expose And Unravel A Web Of Western Meddling (Marsden)
Russia Inherits Prigozhin’s African Odyssey (Bhadrakumar)
History’s Starting to Rhyme – The Fight for Uranium (Jim Rickards)
JPMorgan Flagged Over $1 Billion In Suspicious Epstein Transfers (ZH)
BRICS and the Future of Humanity (Solo)

 

 

 

 

Sachs
https://twitter.com/i/status/1697822863548612813

 

 

 

 

RFK

 

 

 

 

Tucker
https://twitter.com/i/status/1697603136276598857

 

 

DAX Anthony
https://twitter.com/i/status/1697712291163058624

 

 

 

 

17% of Americans got the latest booster. They’ve seen enough.

“..the party will be so badly damaged by then that it will have no other option except to let Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., in to drive out the remaining demons..”

Happenings Await (Jim Kunstler)

In what might be one of his last official acts, “Joe Biden” announced last week that Americans would be “encouraged” to get a new-and-improved mRNA vaccine booster against the new Covid virus strain EG.5 “Eris” (named after the Greek goddess of strife and discord). The “president,” said he asked Congress for funding “for a new vaccine that is necessary, that works…. It will likely be recommended that everybody get it no matter whether they’ve gotten it before or not.” Say, what…? Did the earlier vaccines not work, Joe? Most assuredly they did not. The shots injured, disabled, and killed a great many people, and it staggers the rational mind that the CDC is still pushing these shots. You might conclude that they’re pretending this didn’t happen to evade responsibility. After all, what would be the consequences if these officials admitted that all the previous Covid vaccines were ineffective and harmful?

And what would be the reaction of the 81.3 percent of the population who got at least one dose of the previous vaccines and the 65.6 percent who are “fully vaccinated” with two or more shots? (Note, statistics from the CDC.) I’ll tell you what would happen: the CDC officials and a great many other persons on the public payroll would be in court on criminal charges. And doctors and hospitals would be subject to so many lawsuits they would never again have time to actually practice medicine, while millions of people with damaged immune systems and wrecked organs take flight like so many black swans flapping into the setting sun of their own prematurely attenuated lives. If you care to be astounded, listen to this talk that Dr. Peter McCullough gave to an audience in New Hampshire a few days ago, calling out all the principals who devised the Covid-19 fiasco by name: Ralph Baric, Anthony Fauci, Peter Daszek, and Francis Collins, and then describing exactly how the dastardly act and the cover-up went down.

Speaking of happenings this autumn, expect the war in Ukraine to come to an end. The news media might omit to inform you about this, but it awaits. Russia will not trumpet its victory, so as to avoid inflaming America’s crazed neo-cons. Rather it will just quietly take charge of its successfully neutralized neighbor, make provision for some sort of administration over what remains of the rump state — in a way that affords Russia a sense of permanent security — at the same time that Russia commences new negotiations separately with several European nations to reestablish realistic relations.

The US will be delicately hung out to dry on this. Short of resorting to nuclear World War Three, there is nothing the US can do about it — except for the Democratic Party to blame the whole sorry thing on “Joe Biden” as he is forced to resign from office pending that aforesaid impeachment threat. No other explanation for the end of our Ukraine project will be required. The party of chaos will flounder a while in the very chaos that it induced, trying laughably to switch out Kamala Harris for Gavin Newsom — or some other ploy to stay in business. But the party will be so badly damaged by then that it will have no other option except to let Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., in to drive out the remaining demons and save the venerable old org from suicide.

If you think that these various momentous happenings won’t affect the financial markets and the banking system in the coming season, prepare to be amazed. This is how America truly gets to feel the pain, and this might be how the pitchforks finally come out for the people who wrecked our country.

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Nobody believes McCarthy will actually do it. “He ain’t no Nancy”. He’ll ask for a vote first.

White House Preparing For Biden Impeachment – NBC (RT)

The White House has brought together two dozen legal and media experts to combat an expected Republican effort to impeach US President Joe Biden, NBC reported on Friday, citing a White House aide familiar with the administration’s strategy. According to eight inside sources, the counter-impeachment strategy has reportedly been under development for several months as House Republicans have attempted to investigate the president and his son, Hunter Biden, and their foreign business entanglements. The White House aide who revealed the project to NBC also shared its ultimate goal: to present any impeachment inquiry as an “evidence-free partisan sham that shows a [Republican Party] penchant for chaos.”

The administration’s response will show that its opponents are “out of touch,” one official explained, by juxtaposing Republican attacks on Biden with the president’s work on “economic issues” that affect ordinary Americans. The team has been constructed to prevent any impeachment inquiry from interfering in White House business, the aide explained. This is supposed to allow administration officials to concentrate on their jobs without being “bogged down in the minutia of ongoing investigations.” “Never in modern history has an impeachment been based on no evidence whatsoever,” the aide told the news outlet, implying that taking on the Bidens would constitute such an impeachment.

White House aides on the counter-impeachment team have reportedly spent August’s vacation researching Republican talking points, putting together a message and response team to fight back. They have commissioned polls and studied political ads in the hope of disseminating a unified message supporting Biden to the Democratic Party. The Republican investigation into Biden and his son initially focused on the younger Biden’s alleged crimes, which – according to evidence gathered from a laptop he left in a Delaware repair shop, at least – include influence peddling and corruption as well as more pedestrian drug, gun, and prostitution offenses.

Hunter Biden has not been convicted of anything related to the current investigation, though he was about to enter a guilty plea on tax evasion and gun charges last month before a judge balked at the sweetheart deal he had worked out with prosecutors which would see him avoid a custodial sentence or felony conviction entirely. An issue for an impeachment would be the extent to which the elder Biden was involved in his son’s business deals in countries like Ukraine and China, deals which were directly affected by the policies Joe Biden was making as Vice President under then-president Barack Obama. While the president has denied any knowledge of or participation in his son’s professional activities, email records, as well as the testimony of Hunter Biden’s former business partner Devon Archer, contradict his public statements on the matter.

Comer
https://twitter.com/i/status/1697067369770758613

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MTG is, let’s say, a unique voice.

Biden Dragged US Into Proxy War With Russia That Moscow Is Winning – MTG (Sp.)

Republican firebrand Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) has consistently spoken out against sending more arms supplies to Ukraine. After the Biden administration signed off on the delivery of DPICM cluster munitions to Kiev in July, the congresswoman warned that Washington was dragging the US into an unwanted war with Russia. US President Joe Biden has every single American “involved in a proxy war with Russia” that Moscow “is winning,” Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) told an audience gathered at a town hall meeting in Floyd County on August 31. The politician, who has been staunchly opposed to how the Biden administration has been bankrolling the regime in Kiev, told constituents: The Republican politician went on to point out that the intelligence community was blatantly “lying” to Americans, claiming that Russia and its president, Vladimir Putin, wants to “take over Europe.” “If that was the case… He would be much more aggressive in the war, and he’s not,” the politician, also known by her initials, MTG, emphatically stressed.

“Now, I’m old enough to remember, and I know you are. Every single foreign war America has been involved in… What did we see on television? … Bombing after bombing. Remember all that? Do you guys remember we watched the rockets being fired… We watched troops fighting… How many of you have been able to watch the war in Ukraine that you’re paying for on the nightly news? None of you. You want to know why? America is being lied to about that war. Here’s the tragedy. They’re losing. Russia is winning. That’s the truth,” stated the Georgia congresswoman. MTG weighed in on the cost-of-living issues plaguing the people of America, saying that “energy bills are going up, your groceries are going up… inflation is hurting you. You’re watching your retirement money shrink to nothing because inflation’s going up.” Pointing out that the US federal government was mired in debt “worth $32 trillion,” she queried: “Are we going to end up in another war?”

[..] Reacting to the latest exorbitant military assistance for Ukraine announcement, Marjorie Taylor Greene told the gathering on constituents on August 31: “Washington has sent $113 billion over there. 113 billion. I voted no to every single penny of it. No, I said, no.” She added that there were “innocent people dying every single day” in the Ukraine conflagration. Indeed, despite the massive military assisstance to Kiev, the Ukrainian counteroffensive that started in June has brought no tangible results so far, with the costly Western-gifted weapons destroyed by Russia’s military. The Ukrainian military has sustained tremendous losses, including over 43,000 troops dead and even more wounded. “… But what funding that war means is means we are funding death. We are funding the murder of innocent people,” the congresswoman stressed to the crowd. If the “arrogant leaders” in Washington continue to fund the Ukraine conflagration at the rate they are doing it now, it’s “going to drag on for decades,” said MTG.

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She’s not wrong here.

Rise of BRICS ‘Devastating’ For US – MTG (RT)

As BRICS gains momentum, the US economy becomes weaker because the members of the grouping can circumvent American sanctions and trade in their own currencies, Republican Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene said on Thursday. Speaking to her constituents in Georgia, the Republican congresswoman lashed out at the administration of US President Joe Biden, which she said is turning a blind eye to the rise of BRICS – an economic group which consists of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa and accounts for more than a quarter of global GDP. The Republican firebrand claimed that while the Washington is “doing… nonsense” – including providing all kinds of support to Ukraine which is locked in a conflict with Russia – “there are other countries in the world, powerful countries, organizing together because they are tired of the United States.”

In this sense, the BRICS countries are making serious trade agreements “where they are saying: we’ll buy from you, you’ll buy from us, we don’t care about US sanctions and we’ll sell to one another, buy and sell in our own currency, not the US dollar,” she stated. “This is one of the most devastating things that can happen to all of us,” Greene claimed. As BRICS becomes more powerful, the US dollar gets weaker, she said. “And you know what happens to all of us? We’re going to go broke,” the congresswoman predicted, adding that this dynamic will negatively affect the retirement plans and personal savings of ordinary Americans. “What is going to happen to our children, when the US dollar means nothing anymore, because Russia, and China, and India with its huge population of billions of people have more buying power in their own currencies than we do?

This is a very serious concern,” Greene said. The congresswoman’s remarks come on the heels of a historic BRICS summit in South Africa, where the group agreed to an unprecedented expansion, admitting six new countries – Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates – which will become full-fledged members in 2024. In a declaration summarizing the summit, BRICS, which has historically positioned itself as an alternative to Western-dominated international institutions, reaffirmed its commitment to inclusiveness, while expressing support for the “legitimate aspirations” of African, Asian, and Latin American countries to play a more prominent role in the global arena.

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“An old political saying, that the word “Senate” comes from the same Latin word as “senile”, is circulating again.”

Nikki Haley Calls US Senate ‘Most Privileged Nursing Home In The Country’ (G.)

The US Senate is “the most privileged nursing home in the country”, the Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley said. The former South Carolina governor and ambassador to the United Nations, 51, was speaking to Fox News a day after the Republican leader in the Senate, 81-year-old Mitch McConnell, suffered a second freeze in a month, this time while speaking to reporters in Kentucky. “What I will say is, right now, the Senate is the most privileged nursing home in the country,” Haley said. “I mean, Mitch McConnell has done some great things, and he deserves credit. But you have to know when to leave.”

On Thursday, the congressional physician said McConnell was clear to work, perhaps while suffering the after-effects of concussion, sustained in a fall in March, or dehydration. Other falls have been reported, including a “face plant” at a Washington airport, but McConnell has said he will complete his current six-year term, his seventh, which ends in 2026. It was reported on Thursday that some Republican senators were discussing whether to force a confrontation on the issue of their leader’s health. Haley said: “No one should feel good about seeing [McConnell’s freezes] any more than we should feel good about seeing Dianne Feinstein, any more than we should feel good about a lot of what’s happening or seeing Joe Biden’s decline.”

Feinstein, 90, is a Democrat and the senior senator from California. Her health and mental capacity long in question, she has said she will retire next year. Biden, 80, is the oldest president ever elected and would be 86 by the end of his second term if he wins re-election. A recent poll showed that more than 75% of Americans think he is too old to run again. This week, the Guardian reported a claim in a new book that Biden has privately admitted he is occasionally tired. The current Senate is the oldest in US history. An old political saying, that the word “Senate” comes from the same Latin word as “senile”, is circulating again.

Polling shows support for upper age limits for elected officials. Haley has called for mental competency tests for candidates over 75, though aiming such remarks more at Biden than Trump, the 77-year-old Republican frontrunner. “I wouldn’t care if they did [tests] over the age of 50,” Haley told Fox News. “But these people are making decisions on our national security. They’re making decisions on our economy, on the border. “We need to know they’re at the top of their game. You can’t say that right now, looking at Congress.”

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Russian hardliners are going to get tired of this.

Conflict Should Be Transferred To ‘Russian Territory’ – Ukraine Spy Chief (RT)

Kiev should bring the ongoing hostilities with Moscow to Russian territory, the head of the Ukrainian military’s Main Intelligence Directorate (GUR) has said, contradicting Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky’s earlier statement. Both officials’ comments, however, come as Moscow has repeatedly accused Kiev of staging numerous “terrorist attacks” inside Russia. In an interview with Ukrainian TV anchor Natalya Moseichuk, Kirill Budanov touted a transfer of military action to Russian territory as an “excellent idea.” “The war must be extended to other territory – which for us is clearly Russia – and other areas where they have influence,” he said. According to Budanov, such a tactic would help Ukraine stretch and paralyze Russian forces. “The wider the operations are, the better,” the intelligence official added.

Budanov’s remarks starkly contrast with Zelensky’s comments last month when he ruled out attacks on Russian territory, explaining that this “would pose a great risk that we would be left alone” without the West’s help. Around the same time, however, Mikhail Podoliak, a top aide to the Ukrainian leader, said that Kiev’s Western backers supported the destruction of “everything Russian” in the territories it deems “occupied,” including the Crimean Peninsula, a statement the Kremlin shrugged off as wishful thinking. Russian territory, including Moscow, has come under recurring drone raids targeting civilian facilities in recent months. Ukraine has stopped short of claiming responsibility for the attacks, with Podoliak blaming “unidentified” aircraft instead.

In addition to aerial attacks, Moscow has repeatedly accused Ukraine of attempting to stage incursions into border regions, resulting in intense skirmishes and civilian deaths. In one notable example, in May, a Ukrainian saboteur group infiltrated the Belgorod region, killing one civilian and injuring several others. Kiev claimed this was an operation conducted by the Russian Volunteer Corps (RDK), comprised of neo-Nazi militants and another collaborationist group called the “Freedom of Russia Legion.”

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Yeah, attack Russian territory with these…

US To Send Depleted Uranium Munitions To Ukraine – Reuters (RT)

The US is set to become the second country after the UK to greenlight shipments of depleted-uranium shells to Ukraine, according to Reuters, despite concerns that such munitions could have a dramatic negative effect on public health and the environment. The munitions are intended for US Abrams tanks, first of which are expected to arrive in Ukraine in the coming weeks, the agency reported. According to several unnamed US officials and a “document” cited by Reuters on Saturday, the depleted uranium shells will be part of the next multi-million dollar arms donation expected to be announced next week. The reported plan follows another highly controversial US move to cluster munitions to Ukraine, which had been criticized even by some of Washington’s closest allies.

Should the US approve depleted-uranium shells for Ukraine, it would follow an earlier move by the UK, which announced similar shipments in March. The UK’s decision left Moscow furious, with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov saying that the delivery would be “taking this escalation to a new and very serious stage.” Russia’s embassy in London accused the US and its allies of being willing to turn Ukraine into “not only an anti-Russian military shooting range, but also a radioactive landfill.” When these toxic shells first showed up in Ukraine, Moscow warned that the UK “will be held accountable” for the irreparable harm caused to civilians and soldiers alike. However, both UK and US officials have disputed health hazards associated with DU shells – which use a dense uranium core to improve their armor-piercing capabilities – and deny studies that the weapons were linked to a spike in cancer and birth defects in Iraq.

In the wake of the British move, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that Moscow would respond by placing tactical nuclear weapons in neighboring Belarus. He noted that in this respect Moscow’s actions do not differ from those of the US, which has nuclear weapons deployed in five European countries. Moscow said it will only remove these weapons if the US removes its own nuclear missiles from Europe and dismantles the infrastructure associated with them. Ukraine’s Western backers claim that they are not directly participating in the conflict in Ukraine, and have avoided providing certain weapons – notably fighter jets and long-range missiles – that would risk provoking a direct clash with Russia. Nevertheless, they have sent Kiev more than $100 billion worth of arms, while ignoring Moscow’s repeated warnings that every subsequent weapons package brings the US and NATO closer to active participation in the conflict. Furthermore, by enabling Ukraine’s drone attacks on Russian civilians, Western nations have become “sponsors of terrorism,” according to the Kremlin.

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How much of your money, that is.

How Much Do Mercenaries Make in Ukraine? (Sp.)

The Russian military has reported a major uptick in Ukraine’s recruitment of foreign mercenaries. Estimates on just how much these ‘soldiers of fortune’ get paid vary wildly, from less than $1,000 a month to $2,000 per day. Sputnik did a little digging and spoke to a pair of veteran military experts to try to get to the bottom of things. A Bundeswehr vet who volunteered to fight alongside the Ukrainian Army gave a tell-all interview to German media recently, revealing the surprisingly low going rate of foreigners taking part in NATO’s proxy war against Russia in Ukraine “It depends on how much time you spend on the front lines. There is a principle of combat payments – that is, they pay for each day spent in battle…Per month, it turns out to about €2,000-€2,500 euros. For Ukraine, this is quite a lot,” the mercenary said.

He added that troops who spend more time on the front can get even more, up to about €3,000 (or $3,260), per month. The merc’s testimony seems to match up with figures put out in February by Russia’s Investigative Committee, which has been collecting information on potential war crimes in Ukraine. According to investigators’ figures, foreigners in Ukraine receive between 30,000 and 100,000 hryvnia (about $815-$2,710). The Investigative Committee launched criminal cases against 160 mercs from 33 different countries, including Georgia, the US, Latvia, Israel and Sweden related to suspected crimes against Russian troops and civilians.

The ballpark figures have also been separately confirmed in an investigation by French media this summer, which uncovered that mercs attached to Ukraine’s infamous International Legion receive a base salary of €500 euros, and up to €3,000 a month when they’re on the front lines. Volunteers also complained about having to pay out of pocket for vehicles, supplies and even small arms, notwithstanding the nearly $100 billion in aid doled out by the West to date for weapons. The monthly figures are a far cry from the smattering of information reported during the early stages of the crisis last year, including reporting by British media in March 2022 on payments of up to $2,000 per day plus bonuses for multilingual former soldiers willing to head to Ukraine to engage in extraction operations.

It also challenges the traditional range of “security contractor” job postings, which similarly cite a pay rate of $500-$1,000 per day, equivalent to a six-figure salary when annualized (assuming that the fighter lives that long). “$1,000-$2,000 a month, I think, is kind of low. If you told me that’s for a day, I’d say okay, I can see that. Maybe a little on the high side, but up to that amount for a commander or something, yes, I can see that. But if you’re talking on a per month basis, actually it’s quite low for a mercenary type of situation,” Earl Rasmussen, a retired US Army Lieutenant Colonel-turned international consultant with over two decades of military experience, told Sputnik.

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“Schallenberg said Russia would remain important for the EU, urging the bloc’s lawmakers to “get real.”

Only 10% of Western Firms Have Left Russia – Austria (RT)

More than 90% of Western businesses that were present in Russia before the conflict with Ukraine broke out are still operating in the country, Austrian Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg said on Thursday. In an interview with German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Schallenberg also highlighted Russian companies are still active in Austria and Germany, while Vienna’s dependence on gas supplies from the sanctions-hit country remains high. “Exit from the Russian market is a far more complicated process than it is often described,” Schallenberg said. Austria’s reliance on Russian gas supplies has been reduced but still amounts to 50%, the minister said, stressing that the landlocked country cannot build LNG terminals, unlike some fellow EU member states.

“All in all, only 12% of Austria’s energy requirements are covered by Russian gas supplies,” the minister added. “We have created strategic gas reserves, and won’t face intermittent power outages during the upcoming winter.” Earlier this year, Schallenberg said Russia would remain important for the EU, urging the bloc’s lawmakers to “get real.” The minister defended the right of Raiffeisen Bank International, Austria’s second-largest lender, to continue operating in Russia, as it is one of only two foreign banks that is systemically important for the Russian economy, along with pan-European commercial bank UniCredit. “To think that there won’t be Russia anymore and we can decouple in all areas is delusional,” he stated in a March interview with Reuters.

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It all fell apart with the murder of Gaddafi.

African Coups Expose And Unravel A Web Of Western Meddling (Marsden)

French prosecutors have just charged former French president Nicolas Sarkozy, who spearheaded Western support for the overthrow of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, over alleged Libyan financing of Sarkozy’s 2007 election campaign. Time sure does fly! It seems like it was just yesterday that the Libyan leader was visiting Sarkozy at the Élysée in the wake of Sarkozy’s 2007 election victory, insisting on making himself comfortable in a traditional Bedouin tent on the lawn of the lavish state guest house. Sarkozy had made a trip to Tripoli himself just a few months earlier, barely weeks after taking office. His spokesman called France and Libya’s anti-terrorist cooperation a “longtime common combat.”

But suspicions about Sarkozy’s motives for leading the regime change charge arose in 2012, when Libyan intelligence officials implicated French agents in the capture and killing of Gaddafi in October 2011, alleging a cover-up related to Sarkozy’s 2007 election campaign. Anonymous European officials also started singing the same tune to the Western press. When former US president Barack Obama took office in 2009, Paris insiders said that, given his focus on containing China, Obama delegated much of Africa to the French and Brits – who promptly screwed things up. And Obama was still talking about those screwups in 2016 when he told The Atlantic in an interview that he “had more faith in the Europeans, given Libya’s proximity, being invested in the follow-up,” in the wake of the French- and UK-backed coup against Gaddafi.

Obama underscored, in the same interview, just how easy it was to “purchase France’s involvement in a way that made it less expensive for us and less risky for [America]” – just by allowing Sarkozy to take credit for the coup. The idea that France or a French president can be “purchased” seems relevant here. These events in Libya should also raise questions about the recent coup in Gabon and the role of France in creating the conditions that ultimately gave rise to it. As with Libya and Gaddafi, Sarkozy also seemed to have an odd fixation with Gabon, making three visits to the country between his election in mid-2007 and February 2010, including shortly after Ali Bongo took power in 2009, with 42% of the vote, in the wake of his father Omar’s death. Kind of weird for a French president whose predecessor, Jacques Chirac – who loved Africa so much he built the Musée du Quai d’Orsay in tribute to it – had lamented his lack of interest in the continent.

“The main interest of my trip is to reaffirm loyalty. I want to show that France is faithful,” Sarkozy said during one of those visits to Gabonese President Ali Bongo in 2010. In the wake of these new corruption charges, it seems that French “loyalty” in the case of Libya may have been tied directly to French presidential or special interests. And, by some accounts, that could also be the case with Gabon.

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“More than anyone, the CIA and Kiev had a score to settle and wanted Prigozhin dead… Projecting Russian influence into Africa is a crucial part of Putin’s foreign policy, and Wagner is the key to this success..”

Russia Inherits Prigozhin’s African Odyssey (Bhadrakumar)

Africa, especially west Africa, has a strong sense of collective identity. Trends in one country have a way of spreading across the continent. Therefore, It might or might not be a coincidence that the military takeover in Gabon on Wednesday came just a day after French President Emmanuel Macron took a tough stance vis-a-vis the generals in power in Niger. Macron not only scoffed at the generals’ demand seeking removal of the French envoy in Niamey and the French troops numbering 1500 personnel in that country but threatened to attack Niger. Apparently, Macron meant business. AFP had reported last week the stern warning by the spokesman for the French general staff, Colonel Pierre Gaudillière, that “French military forces are ready to respond to any resurgence of tension that would undermine French military and diplomatic bases in Niger” and that “measures have been taken to protect these bases”.

But the generals in Niamey hit back despatching a communication to the French foreign ministry that Macron’s envoy, Ambassador Sylvain Itté “no longer enjoys the privileges and immunities attached to his status as a member of the diplomatic staff of the French Embassy”; his “diplomatic cards and visas” and those of his family members “are cancelled”; and, the Niger police “have been instructed to proceed with the expulsion” of Itté. It is a humiliating rebuff to Macron. He has no option now but to dial back his threat. A bloodbath in Niger to vent his anger at the deportation of his ambassador will be disastrous for France’s international standing. Besides, a “known unknown” factor also comes into play which will make Paris (and Washington) think twice — the ghost of Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin. This needs explaining.

Although no credible source has linked Russia to the coup in Niger, its strong connection with interventions in African countries — Central African Republic, Sudan, Mali and Libya — through the Wagner group leaves unanswered questions. This of course brings up the circumstances of the plane crash of Prigozhin in mysterious circumstances, which Russian investigators now estimate as an act of sabotage. There is no question that Prigozhin was an obstacle to the US/NATO plans in Africa. John Varoli, former foreign correspondent for New York Times, Bloomberg and Reuters TV (who was based in Moscow from 1992 to 2013 and was “trained as a US foreign policy expert with a focus on Russia and Ukraine”) wrote a riveting blog in Substack recently where he concluded on the following lines:

“More than anyone, the CIA and Kiev had a score to settle and wanted Prigozhin dead… Projecting Russian influence into Africa is a crucial part of Putin’s foreign policy, and Wagner is the key to this success. Relations with African leaders are built on Prigozhin’s personal charisma… Likewise, by eliminating Prigozhin and his top officers, NATO has dealt a blow to the Kremlin’s ambitions in Africa… Like with any high-profile assassination, we will never know the full truth. But one thing is for certain — the U.S., certain NATO members and Ukraine benefit the most from Prigozhin’s demise, while the Kremlin gains absolutely nothing. All available information points to Western involvement and guilt.”

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All roads lead to Africa.

History’s Starting to Rhyme – The Fight for Uranium (Jim Rickards)

Another conflict with escalatory potential involves the state of Niger, located in the Sahara desert. A recent military coup d’état overthrew the elected government several weeks ago (although the coup leaders contend the election was fraudulent). Some surveys show that the military junta enjoys broad popular support. Niger is France’s largest supplier of uranium, while France is one of the largest builders of nuclear power plants in the world. France desperately needs to restore order in Niger, including forcing the junta to step aside and reinstate the elected government. France has special forces including the French Foreign Legion ready to intervene. However, France does not want to proceed unilaterally, and is trying to recruit African allies to join the invasion.

The most significant regional grouping is the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which includes both Francophone states like Senegal and Côte D’Ivoire and important Anglophone states such as Nigeria. France is recruiting ECOWAS to participate in its invasion of Niger. ECOWAS members are divided on the idea. In any case, ECOWAS action would require approval of the African Union and possibly the United Nations as well as weeks of mobilization. So no military action is likely for several months at the earliest. There’s no evidence that Russia was involved in the Niger coup, but Russia certainly stands as a major beneficiary. Russia is the other large manufacturer of nuclear power plants in addition to France. Russia gets its uranium from inside Russia, Kazakhstan and other Central Asian republics. (Russia also owns large amounts of U.S. uranium deposits obtained in a deal authorized by Hillary Clinton in exchange for huge donations to the Clinton Foundation).

If Russia can cut off France’s access to Nigérien uranium, it will tighten its hold on global uranium supplies and enhance its position as a provider of nuclear power plants. There is some talk now (not confirmed) that Russia may offer support to the Nigérien coup, including possible deployment of the Wagner Group mercenary army. That would greatly complicate any plans for French or ECOWAS involvement. Again, we would have the specter of Russia (via Wagner) and France (a NATO member) squaring off in a war for uranium in the Sahara desert. The escalatory potential is obvious. By the way, the bloodthirsty Victoria Nuland visited Niger recently and was not warmly received. She departed the country empty-handed. No doubt she left some threats of U.S. support for the French behind.

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“The only reason that JPMorgan after 16 years reported the $1 billion in suspicious transactions was because he was arrested and then he was dead..”

OK, what makes them suspicious? And isn’t there a law that says these MUST be reported -when they happen, not 16 years later?!

Also: what are the names on the transfers? We don’t get even one?

JPMorgan Flagged Over $1 Billion In Suspicious Epstein Transfers (ZH)

JPMorgan flagged over $1 billion in suspicious transactions linked to deceased pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, which the bank reported to the US government, the US Virgin Islands has claimed in its lawsuit against the bank. “JPMorgan was a full-service bank for Jeffrey Epstein’s sex trafficking,” said Mimi Liu, an attorney for the USVI, which says the enormous sum bolsters key allegations in their legal action against the bank, which they say knowingly benefited from Epstein’s wrongdoing, Bloomberg reports, noting that this is the first time in the case that the ‘sheer volume of Epstein’s financial activity at JPMorgan over a 16-year period has been disclosed.’ The suspicious activity was detailed in a 2019 filing to the US Department of Treasury, a USVI attorney told a federal court in Manhattan on Thursday.

The filing was made after Epstein died in a Manhattan jail cell a month after his arrest on sex trafficking charges. Epstein had been with the bank from the late 1990s through 2013, when they finally cut ties with him. Epstein notoriously trafficked some of his victims to a private island in the USVI. JPMorgan denies that it let Epstein’s activities slide, and says it reported around 150 cash transactions to a federal regulator between 2002 and 2013. Last month, the USVI told the judge in the case that the bank facilitated over $1.1 million in payments from Jeffrey Epstein to “girls or women,” many of whom had Eastern European surnames. Over $320,000 of the payments were made to “numerous individuals for whom JPMorgan had no previously identified payments,” Singer wrote, accusing the bank of failing to disclose the payments until after the end of discovery – the period in which parties in a lawsuit exchange evidence.

The bank claims that’s irrelevant, because the USVI doesn’t have legal standing to claim JPMorgan obstructed a trafficking investigation because it wasn’t a victim. That said, Liu is urging the judge in the case to decide various claims in the USVI’s favor without a trial. “The only reason that JPMorgan after 16 years reported the $1 billion in suspicious transactions was because he was arrested and then he was dead,” she said. JPMorgan claims they had no idea what Epstein was up to – pointing to depositions from current and former employees who say they had no knowledge of the trafficking. “There is hotly disputed testimony and evidence,” said Feliia Ellsworth, an attorney for the bank.

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BRICS and human rights.

BRICS and the Future of Humanity (Solo)

In Egypt, there are over 60,000 political prisoners and arbitrary detentions. There is also torture, enforced disappearances, death sentences; the persecution of independent journalists and the repression of any dissent are the order of the day. In Iran, the protests following the murder of the young Masha Amini were brutally repressed, leading to several death sentences after show trials. Here too, arrests (often of journalists, accused of documenting protests and abuses), torture, and enforced disappearances, not to mention discrimination against women and the persecution of gays and lesbians are widespread. Saudi Arabia is an absolute monarchy where human rights are systematically violated, freedom of expression is attacked and women are discriminated against by law.

Here too there are unfair trials, arbitrary detentions and death sentences often imposed for simply participating in sit-ins and protests. With the bombings in Yemen, Saudi Arabia has also caused massacres of civilians and one of the most serious humanitarian crises in the world. In the UAE, consensual same-sex relationships between adults are criminalized and political dissidents are subjected to abuse, arbitrary detention and ill-treatment. Press freedom is hindered and limited by controls and bans. In India, democracy is degenerating into an increasingly totalitarian form and aims to transform a multilingual and multireligious country into a monolithic entity dominated by a fanatical Hindu party. Protests and dissent are repressed and religious and ethnic minorities persecuted.

As of 2022, the NGO Reporters Without Borders ranks China as one of the ten countries in the world with the least freedom of the press. In Russia, conscientious objectors and all those who refuse to participate in the war against Ukraine are persecuted, arrested and imprisoned. Brazil, Argentina and South Africa are the only BRICS members to have abolished the death penalty. China invaded Tibet in 1950 and annexed it in 1959, bloodily suppressing the revolt of the population; a situation that continues today. Russia has been carrying on an invasion war in Ukraine for over a year that has caused thousands of dead and wounded and terrible devastation, which is countered by an equally criminal warmongering policy by NATO, the European Union and the United States.

Currently, only Brazil and South Africa are among the 92 signatories and 68 states parties to the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Among the remaining BRICS members India, Russia and China are nuclear powers with expanding arsenals.

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Skull moth
https://twitter.com/i/status/1697615347153510622

 

 

Jump
https://twitter.com/i/status/1697496204093899175

 

 

Alpaca
https://twitter.com/i/status/1697525148222464375

 

 

Pelican
https://twitter.com/i/status/1697670469904675303

 

 

Sea slug
https://twitter.com/i/status/1697636709955936532

 

 

Dogfather

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Aug 312023
 
 August 31, 2023  Posted by at 9:24 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  45 Responses »


Pablo Picasso The Dream 1932

 

US Headed For ‘Hot War’ With Russia – Tucker Carlson (RT)
Biden Looks to Prevent Future President From Ending Ukraine War (Antiwar)
Trump Vows To Lock Up Political Enemies If He Returns To White House (G.)
Ukraine’s Fate Sealed Long Before Failing Counteroffensive (Scott Ritter)
Ukraine To Review All Draft Exemptions – Zelensky (RT)
French Troops Reportedly Given Until September 3 to Withdraw From Niger (Sp.)
Coup In Gabon, Situation In West Africa A Big Issue For Europe – Borrell (RT)
EU Imports Of Russian LNG Leap By 40% Since Ukraine Invasion (G.)
Expanded BRICS Set to De-Dollarize the World, Control Global Energy Supply (ET)
What if Biden Backs Out of the Race? (RCW)
Majority of Voters Are Skeptical of Possible Biden Impeachment (Manley)
Hunter Biden Helped Plan State Dinners During Dad’s VP Days (Sp.)

 

 

 

 

One thing you can not do today is not watch the Tucker Carlson interview. I picked some snippets AND the full interview.

“They can’t lose. They will do anything to win. So how do they do that? They’re not going to do COVID again…They’re going to go to war with Russia is what they’re going to do. There will be a hot war between the United States and Russia within the next year…They need to declare war footing in order to assume war powers in order to win. I believe that and I think all the evidence suggests that’s true.”
https://twitter.com/i/status/1696853567942819962

 

 

 

 

https://twitter.com/i/status/1696842931372429744

 

 

Full interview:

 

 

 

 

Rogan Anthony


https://twitter.com/i/status/1696969298407772388

 

 

Yeadon

 

 

 

 

“..the American empire is in freefall right now – and we’re going to lose the US dollar, and when that happens we’re going to have real poverty here, like Great Depression-level poverty.

And it comes from this war..”

US Headed For ‘Hot War’ With Russia – Tucker Carlson (RT)

The US proxy war against Russia is likely to become an open war within the next year, former Fox News host Tucker Carlson said on Wednesday. The ruling Democrats need the war to keep power and too many Republicans are willing to go along, he added. “They will do anything to win,” Carlson said in an hour-long interview with radio host Adam Carrolla. He argued that another coronavirus lockdown is unlikely, as too many people would refuse to comply, so “they’re going to go to war with Russia, that’s what they’re going to do.” “There will be a hot war between the US and Russia in the next year,” Carlson said. “I don’t think we’ll win it.” “We’re already at war with Russia, of course, we’re funding their enemies,” he added.

The US has allocated over $130 billion for Kiev over the past 18 months for weapons, military equipment, ammunition, and the salaries of government officials. “I think that could easily happen,” the former cable TV host continued. “I think we could ‘Tonkin Gulf’ our way into it, where all of a sudden missiles land in Poland, ‘The Russians did it! Our NATO ally has been attacked! We’re going to war’! I can see that happening very easily.” In August 1964, the US fabricated an incident with the North Vietnamese navy in the Gulf of Tonkin as a pretext to deploy ground troops in South Vietnam. The scenario Carlson described already happened as well, when a Ukrainian air-defense missile struck a village across the Polish border last November, killing two local civilians.

Warsaw and Washington were quick to debunk Kiev’s claim that it had been a Russian strike, however. Carlson argued that the US could “force a peace in Ukraine tonight” by cutting off Kiev’s funding. “Otherwise, and I would bet my house on it, we are going to war with Russia,” he said. “And, of course, the stakes are everything. Life on the planet. These are the two biggest nuclear arsenals in the world, facing off against each other.” The US has “already lost control of the world – the American empire is in freefall right now – and we’re going to lose the US dollar, and when that happens we’re going to have real poverty here, like Great Depression-level poverty.

And it comes from this war,” Carlson told Carolla. He added that most Americans may not be able to see that, but it’s “super obvious” when one leaves the US, even for a short while. Moreover, he argued, the US “crushed” the German economy “when the Biden administration blew up Nord Stream” last September, and its Ukraine policies have done a lot to undermine Western Europe, Washington’s only real ally in the world. Carlson has just returned from Hungary, where he took part in a conference and interviewed Prime Minister Viktor Orban for his new show on X, formerly Twitter. Carlson made Elon Musk’s social media platform his new home after Fox News canceled his top-rated evening show in April, for reasons that have never been made public.

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The naked power of Raytheon.

Biden Looks to Prevent Future President From Ending Ukraine War (Antiwar)

The Biden administration is working to reach a deal with Ukraine for long-term military support to keep backing the war with Russia that would be difficult for a future president to exit, The Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday. The effort is part of a commitment made by G7 nations at the recent NATO summit in Vilnius to negotiate their own bilateral security deals with Ukraine. Besides the G7 nations, 18 other countries have agreed to provide long-term military support for Kyiv. The idea of the long-term commitment is to show Russia that it can’t wait out the Biden administration. The Journal report reads: “Western officials are looking for ways to lock in pledges of support and limit future governments’ abilities to backtrack, amid fears in European capitals that Donald Trump, if he recaptures the White House, would seek to scale back aid.” Trump, who escalated US involvement in Ukraine during his term by taking the step to provide Javelin missiles, has said he would end the Ukraine war within “24 hours” if elected in 2024.

The former president is the current frontrunner for the Republican nomination. The Journal report acknowledged that the Biden administration could not legally bind a future president from exiting a deal with Ukraine, but Republican hawks in Congress could make it difficult. During his time as president, Trump withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal, but the majority of Republicans in Congress supported exiting the agreement. A US official told the Journal that one proposal being considered for Ukraine would be a memorandum of understanding (MOU), which would not require congressional approval. President Biden has previously floated the idea of an “Israel model” for Ukraine. The US provides Israel with $3.8 billion in military aid each year under a 10-year MOU but does not provide mutual defense guarantees. The Journal report said that French officials have suggested military aid commitments for Ukraine should be over a four-year period.

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“Do you regret not locking [Clinton] up? And if you’re president again, will you lock people up?” Trump said: “The answer is you have no choice, because they’re doing it to us.”

Trump Vows To Lock Up Political Enemies If He Returns To White House (G.)

Donald Trump says he will lock up his political enemies if he is president again. In an interview on Tuesday, the rightwing broadcaster Glenn Beck raised Trump’s famous campaign-trail vow to “lock up” Hillary Clinton, his opponent in 2016, a promise Trump did not fulfill in office. Beck said: “Do you regret not locking [Clinton] up? And if you’re president again, will you lock people up?” Trump said: “The answer is you have no choice, because they’re doing it to us.” Trump has encouraged the “lock her up” chant against other opponents but he remains in considerable danger of being locked up himself. Under four indictments, he faces 91 criminal charges related to election subversion, retention of classified information and hush-money payments to a adult film star. He denies wrongdoing and claims to be the victim of political persecution. Trials are scheduled next year.

Earlier this month, Politico calculated that Trump faced a maximum of 641 years in jail. After the addition of 13 racketeering and conspiracy charges in Georgia, Forbes upped the total to more than 717 years. Trump is 77. Both sites noted, however, that if convicted, the former president was unlikely to receive maximum sentences. Nor would convictions bar Trump from running for president or being elected. On that score, Trump dominates national and key state polling regarding the Republican presidential nomination. In his Tuesday interview on BlazeTV, Trump also said he “never hit Biden as hard as I could have” while in office. Trump’s first impeachment concerned attempts to find dirt on rivals including Biden, related to politics and business in Ukraine. Now, in Congress, Trump’s Republican allies are threatening to impeach Biden over unsubstantiated allegations connected to his surviving son, Hunter.

Trump told Beck that Biden was behind the indictments against him. In fact, all were brought by prosecutors independent of the White House: 44 by the justice department special counsel Jack Smith, 34 by the Manhattan district attorney, Alvin Bragg, and 13 by Fani Willis, the district attorney of Fulton county, Georgia. Trump also claimed “the woman that I never met, that they accused me of rape, that’s being run by a Democrat, a Democrat operative, and paid for by the Democrat [sic] party”. That was a reference to civil claims brought by E Jean Carroll, a writer who says Trump sexually assaulted her in New York in the 1990s. Earlier this year, Trump was found liable for sexual abuse and defamation and fined about $5m. A second trial is due next year.

The judge in the case has said Trump has been adjudicated a rapist. Also facing investigations of his business affairs, Trump said Democrats and other opponents were “sick people … evil people”. The twice impeached, four times indicted, 91 times charged ex-president also told Beck he “always had such great respect for the office of the president and the presidency”.

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“..the Ukrainian high command will be confronted with the reality that they will need to order a general retreat to more defensive positions..“

Ukraine’s Fate Sealed Long Before Failing Counteroffensive (Scott Ritter)

While Ukraine, with the support of its NATO allies, has accrued sufficient military capacity to engage in concerted military operations against Russia since the counteroffensive began in early June, the reality is that this effort is unsustainable. In short, Ukraine has reached the end of its tether. While the tactical situation along the line of contact with Russia fluctuates daily, and Ukraine has been able to achieve some limited success in certain areas, the cost that comes with these successes has been so high that Ukraine lacks not only the ability to exploit these successes, but is in danger of not being able to maintain a military presence along the entirety of the frontline sufficient to hold back any concerted Russian offensive operations.

The heavy casualties suffered by Ukraine, combined with the failure of the counteroffensive to breach even the first line of the prepared Russian defenses, have prompted the Ukrainian army to commit its strategic reserve into the fight. This reserve, consisting of some of the best trained and equipped forces available to the Ukrainians, was meant to exploit the advances made by the initial offensive operations. The fact that the strategic reserve has been committed to achieve objectives that all preceding attacking units had failed to accomplish only underscores the futility of the Ukrainian effort, and the inevitability of its ultimate defeat.

The collapse of Ukrainian military cohesion along the line of contact with Russia is occurring even as the last vestige of the Ukrainian counteroffensive bleeds itself white in the fields of Zaporozhye. Because of battlefield losses suffered by Ukraine in the months leading up to the initiation of the June counteroffensive (mainly, but not exclusively, in the Battle for Artemovsk), Ukrainian forces were stretched thin as units were reshuffled along the front to replace those that had been depleted in battle. As the counteroffensive floundered, military resources were withdrawn from other sectors of the front to make up for the losses.

This thinning of the Ukrainian lines provided opportunities for the Russian forces, leading to major advances in the vicinity of Kupyansk. As Ukrainian losses continue, this thinning will only become more prevalent, creating gaps in the Ukrainian defenses which can be exploited by a Russian military which has upwards of 200,000 well-trained, well-equipped reserves which have yet to be committed into the battle. This cause-effect relationship will continue, since Ukraine has no more reserves available to replace battlefield losses which will continue to accrue all along the line of contact. Eventually, the Ukrainian posture will be unsustainable, and the Ukrainian high command will be confronted with the reality that they will need to order a general retreat to more defensive positions—perhaps as far back as the right bank of the Dnepr River—or face the inevitability of the total destruction of their army.

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“Earlier this week, mobile operator Kievstar mentioned “400,000 heroes” who had “gone to eternity” in a charity drive, before quickly deleting the post.”

Ukraine To Review All Draft Exemptions – Zelensky (RT)

The National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) of Ukraine decided on Wednesday to review every single draft exemption issued since the start of the conflict with Russia, citing widespread corruption. “All cases where [exemption] decisions are clearly groundless and illegal should be dealt with by law enforcement,” President Vladimir Zelensky announced after the NSDC meeting. The council also decided to fully digitize the entire Armed Forces database and revise the criteria for determining fitness for military service, to prevent “manipulation”and give field commanders more opportunities to find appropriate roles for soldiers. NSDC head Aleksey Danilov said that Ukraine is rolling out a “newly approved” plan for further mobilization, calling up as many men as it may need to continue the fighting.

Zelensky sacked the heads of all enlistment offices in early August, after the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) announced the discovery of a “widespread conspiracy” to forge health exemptions by military-medical commissions in 11 regions of the country. The conspirators allegedly charged up to $6,000 for fraudulent papers, which draft-dodgers then used to leave the country. The government in Kiev has ordered several waves of conscription since the hostilities with Russia escalated in February 2022. In late June, recruitment centers in several regions stopped sending individual summons, issuing blanket notifications to all men of military age instead.

After Zelensky’s purge of enlistment commissioners, the Financial Times reported that some fraudulent exemptions could cost up to $10,000, and that almost 20,000 Ukrainians have been caught trying to dodge the draft, citing official government figures. The BBC spoke of a widespread social media movement to help the draft-dodgers, with groups with as many as 100,000 members offering tips, tricks and other assistance. Meanwhile, photos posted on social media in recent months have shown cemeteries across Ukraine rapidly filling up, due to the death toll of the grinding offensive against Russian strongholds in the south. Earlier this week, mobile operator Kievstar mentioned “400,000 heroes” who had “gone to eternity” in a charity drive, before quickly deleting the post.

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Only…They can’t fire at them and give France an excuse to invade..

French Troops Reportedly Given Until September 3 to Withdraw From Niger (Sp.)

Niger’s National Council for the Safeguard of the Homeland (CNSP) has reportedly demanded the complete withdrawal of French troops from the West African country by September 3. Earlier in the day, Saudi media reported the CNSP had announced the annulment of all security and military agreements with France. By the end of the week, supporters of the pullout are going to stage an indefinite protest against the presence of the French military in Niger. Some residents have reportedly demanded that the authorities cut water and power supply to the French base, as well as halt food deliveries.

Last week, the Nigerien Foreign Ministry called on French Ambassador Sylvain Itte to leave the country within 48 hours. Paris said it took note of Niger’s request to the ambassador, but noted Niger’s military leadership has no authority to make such decisions. On July 26, Niger’s presidential guard ousted and detained President Mohamed Bazoum. The guard’s commander, Gen. Abdourahmane Tchiani, proclaimed himself the president of the caretaker CNSP-led government. Most Western countries as well as ECOWAS condemned it. In early August, ECOWAS adopted a plan for a potential military intervention in Niger.

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“..how we can improve our policy in respect with these countries..”

Decades too late.

Coup In Gabon, Situation In West Africa A Big Issue For Europe – Borrell (RT)

European Union defense ministers will meet to discuss the situation in the Central African state of Gabon, after soldiers of the former French colony announced earlier that they had assumed control, the bloc’s foreign-policy chief Josep Borrell said on Wednesday. “If this is confirmed, it is another military coup which increases instability in the whole region,” Borrell said, during a meeting of EU defense ministers in the Spanish city of Toledo reported-on by Reuters. A group of Gabonese soldiers appeared on national television in the early hours of Wednesday, saying they had dissolved state institutions and canceled the results of the country’s disputed elections.

The move came after Gabon’s longtime leader, Ali Bongo, was declared the winner of last week’s presidential election, giving him the green light to govern for a third term. The soldiers denounced the “irresponsible, unpredictable governance” of Bongo, claiming his 14 years in office had resulted in a “deterioration in social cohesion that risks leading the country into chaos.” The coup in Gabon is the latest in a series of military takeovers in Africa in recent years, coming just weeks after soldiers seized power in Niger. The new military rulers in Niger, another former French colony, have refused to release ousted President Mohamed Bazoum and restore democratic rule, despite pressure from the 15-nation West African Regional bloc, ECOWAS.

The regional authority has activated a standby force for a military intervention backed by France, which it has threatened to use against the coup leaders in Niamey if diplomatic efforts fail. Mali and Burkina Faso, both military-ruled countries, have warned against armed action directed at their counterparts in Niger. While expressing concern about the situation in Gabon, which has a population of nearly 2.5 million, Borrell stated that coups in other parts of the continent are “a big issue for Europe.” “The whole area, starting with Central African Republic, then Mali, then Burkina Faso, now Niger, maybe Gabon, it’s in a very difficult situation and certainly the [EU] ministers… have to have a deep thought on what is going on there and how we can improve our policy in respect with these countries,” he said.

https://twitter.com/i/status/1697003725531779096

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Ha! Ha! Sanctions.

EU Imports Of Russian LNG Leap By 40% Since Ukraine Invasion (G.)

EU imports of Russian liquified natural gas (LNG) have increased by 40% since the invasion of Ukraine despite efforts to cut down supplies. Member states have bought more than half of Russia’s LNG on the market in the first seven months of this year, according to analysis of data by Kpler, which tracks marine and tanker traffic. Spain and Belgium, which acts as major gateways for LNG supplies to the bloc, have emerged as the second and third-biggest customers of Russian LNG respectively after China. “EU countries now buy the majority of Russia’s supply, propping up one of the Kremlin’s most important sources of revenue,” said Jonathan Noronha-Gant, a senior fossil fuel campaigner at the anti-corruption group Global Witness, which did the analysis.

Europe’s pipeline gas flows from Russia have fallen to historic lows since the invasion last year as countries wean themselves off it, but to make up for the shortfall shipments of cooled LNG from all over the world, including Russia, have surged and are not subject to any EU sanctions. EU countries bought 22m cubic metres of Russian LNG between January and July 2023, compared with 15m during the same period in 2021, Global Witness said. “Buying Russian gas has the same impact as buying Russian oil. Both fund the war in Ukraine, and every euro means more bloodshed. While European countries decry the war, they’re putting money into Putin’s pockets,” Noronha-Gant said. “These countries should align their actions with their words by banning the trade of Russian LNG that is fuelling both the war and the climate crisis.”

Spain and Belgian said the numbers did not reflect national purchasing but the fact that their ports were major gateways for the rest of the continent. European leaders spent 2022 reducing their reliance on Russian energy and trying to build alternative supplies after the country’s president, Vladimir Putin, closed off the gas taps to Europe. The EU imposed sanctions on imports of Russian oil and coal after Moscow’s forces invaded Ukraine in February last year. It also banned Russian entities from storing gas in the bloc and prohibited most new investments in the Russian energy sector. Fears of winter blackouts led to people in many countries being asked to turn down their heating thermostats by 1C and night-time illumination of public buildings across the bloc, including the Eiffel Tower, was stopped. In some cities street lights were turned off after midnight to save energy.

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Irreversible.

Expanded BRICS Set to De-Dollarize the World, Control Global Energy Supply (ET)

“The expansion of BRICS has made it clear that the de-dollarization of the international finance system is inevitable.” This view, from economist William Gumede—who’s also executive chairperson of the Democracy Works Foundation in South Africa—has been echoed around the world since BRICS leaders announced the expansion of the bloc on Aug. 24 at a summit in Johannesburg. Current BRICS members are Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. In January, BRICS—originally established in 2009 to represent the world’s strongest emerging market economies—will add Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to its ranks. Mr. Gumede, one of South Africa’s leading academics and thought-leaders, has been researching the potential impacts of de-dollarization since 2014.

He told The Epoch Times the average per capita GDP of the G7 economies was currently six times that of BRICS economies. But, the unexpectedly swift expansion of BRICS would increase the trade bloc’s share of the global economy much faster than earlier predictions. “These forecasts did not take into account that BRICS would expand its membership very quickly. A larger BRICS will mean the world will increasingly use U.S. dollars less,” he said. Mr. Gumede said the bigger BRICS alliance would eventually rival the Group of Seven (G7) large industrial economies of the United States, European Union, United Kingdom, France, Japan, Italy, and Canada, which together are home to 16 percent of the world’s population and account for 62 percent of the global economy.

Welcoming the new members in Johannesburg last week, Brazil’s President Lula da Silva said their addition would mean BRICS would represent 46 percent of the global population and 37 percent of the world GDP. The expansion means BRICS now consists of some of the globe’s largest oil producers: Russia, Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Egypt. Nigeria, another major oil exporter, is set to join when the bloc gets even bigger, probably at its next summit in Russia in 2024. “BRICS is going to dominate the world’s energy supply,” said Mr. Gumede. “The strength of the U.S. dollar is also partially based on the currency as underpinning oil trade—the so-called petrodollar—and members of OPEC settle their accounts in U.S. dollars.

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Look at the phrasing:

“One candidate who is already running, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., would stay in the race, trading on his family name rather than his conspiracy-fueled ideas.”

What if Biden Backs Out of the Race? (RCW)

President Biden has declared he’s running for a second term, but it’s far from certain he actually will. His infirmity and low poll numbers raise serious doubts. His physical decline shows when he walks or climbs the stairs of Air Force One. His cognitive decline shows when he refuses to hold press conferences or answer even the simplest questions, like how he feels about the devastating fires in Maui. His decline in the public’s estimation shows when pollsters ask Americans how they’re doing. Four out of five answer, “Not good. Not good at all.” Voters also say they don’t want another general election choice like the last one. So many votes in 2020 were negative ones “against the worse candidate,” not in favor of the better one. They don’t want another grudge match between two unpopular candidates.

Biden’s dismal poll numbers form a somber backdrop for his reelection campaign. That backdrop is even darker now that his health problems are so visible. These mounting problems may not prevent him from running, but they do lessen the chances. True, he keeps saying he is running. But, like all politicians, he may be deceiving the public or himself. The biggest “tell” is that Biden is avoiding the very things active candidates do. He’s not campaigning. He’s not attending a lot of small events with big donors. He’s not running ads. He’s not using the White House’s bully pulpit to address the nation on our challenges and his response to them. Still, those signs are not definitive. Biden might be lying low because the Republicans are fighting among themselves. Why get in their way? Better to wait until late autumn to ramp up his campaign.

He might be unsure if he really is running, uncertain if he is up to the arduous task, physically and mentally. Or he might have already decided, privately, that he will not run but is delaying the announcement since it would immediately turn him into a powerless lame duck. At this point, it’s impossible to know what he has decided. He might not know himself. But it is well worth considering the implications if Biden limits himself to one term and waits until late fall or early spring to make the announcement. The first implication is that a late withdrawal favors some Democratic candidates over others. It favors those with high name recognition, existing campaign operations, and the ability to fund expensive national efforts, either from outside donations or their own pockets.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom has already established his campaign-in-waiting and can raise lots of money, especially from big donors in his home state. Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker is a billionaire who can fund his own run and has begun setting up a national team. Michigan’s Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, by contrast, would be several steps behind and would need to raise a lot of money quickly to become a viable candidate. So would Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis, Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro, or others who might step into the wide-open race. One candidate who is already running, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., would stay in the race, trading on his family name rather than his conspiracy-fueled ideas.

[..] The second consequence of a Biden withdrawal would be a fight over the future of Kamala Harris. She is the least popular vice president in polling history, and for good reason. Voters think she’s incompetent, inauthentic, and inarticulate, an empty-calorie word salad without any policy achievements. She’s the living embodiment of the “Peter Principle,” where people keep getting promoted until they reach their level of incompetence.

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Given GOP’s track record…

Majority of Voters Are Skeptical of Possible Biden Impeachment (Manley)

A poll published on Wednesday has revealed that a majority of American voters (56%) see a possible impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden as more of a partisan political stunt than those (38%) who view it as a “serious effort to investigate important problems.” At least 53% of Independents who responded to the poll also agreed that an impeachment inquiry would be more of a political stunt. The poll was conducted by Public Policy Polling and commissioned by the Congressional Integrity Project, both groups of which lean Democrat. Some 37% of those who responded to the poll said they were Democrat, while 32% said they were Republican and 31% said they were Independent. About 88% of Biden voters said an impeachment of the president would be a “partisan political stunt” while just 20% of former US President Donald Trump’s voters said the same. When grouped politically, 81% of Democrats held this view, while 30% of Republicans said the same. Another 73% of Trump voters, and just 7% of Biden backers said the impeachment inquiry would be a “serious effort to investigate important problems.”

The survey then asked respondents whether Republicans should still move to impeach Biden if “no evidence is found” in the investigation. In response, 61% said they should not impeach him, while 32% said they should, and 7% said they were not sure. “MAGA Republicans’ impeachment promises are nothing more than a partisan political stunt designed to hurt President Biden, and the American people know it,” said Leslie Dach, a senior adviser for the Congressional Integrity Project. “Republicans have failed to find a single shred of evidence of wrongdoing by President Biden and voters see right through their partisan games.” A possible impeachment investigation in Biden appears to be on the horizon for Congress as summer comes to a close. Last week, US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) said he would launch an impeachment inquiry in September should the Biden administration fail to turn over documents he believes are tied to an alleged bribery scheme involving his family.

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Seating his donors…

Hunter Biden Helped Plan State Dinners During Dad’s VP Days (Sp.)

A number of emails obtained from the US National Archives and Records Administration revealed more than 1,000 emails between the office of then-Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden’s advisory firm Rosemont Seneca Partners, America First Legal said in a statement. “We obtained new docs from our lawsuit against the National Archives revealing over 1,000 emails between Rosemont Seneca and the Office of Vice President,” the statement said on Wednesday. “The vast majority of these emails consisted of direct communications between Rosemont Seneca employees, including Hunter Biden, and the Office of the Vice President.”

The emails contradict Joe Biden’s claims that there was a wall between personal and government business, the statement said, underscoring that Hunter Biden was “intimately involved in planning for high-profile White House events” despite lacking any official role. One of the findings revealed that Hunter Biden took part in planning a 2011 luncheon with Chinese officials, arrival ceremony with the then German chancellor, 2012 state dinner with UK dignitaries, 2013 state luncheon with Turkish officials and a state dinner with French officials in 2014. The “Biden name” was used to gain access to the White House for Rosemont Seneca and their associates, the statement said, detailing a December 2013 incident in which a lobbyist “reached out” to Hunter’s business partner for last-minute tickets to a Christmas tour of the White House.

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Sean Penn
https://twitter.com/i/status/1696950646979670408

 

 

 

 

Quail
https://twitter.com/i/status/1696789527984025741

 

 

Octopus

 

 

Cheetah

 

 

 

 

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