Jan 242024
 
 January 24, 2024  Posted by at 9:45 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  43 Responses »


Nicolas de Staël Paris la nuit 1954

 

Trump ‘Honored’ By New Hampshire Win, Says Republican Party ‘Very United’ (Fox)
Israel Risks Dragging Egypt Into War (Blade)
Russia Will Do Everything to Integrate Egypt Into BRICS – Putin (Sp.)
UN Agency Says 570,000 People in Gaza Strip Face Dire Hunger (Sp.)
No Direct Threat From Russia – NATO (RT)
Germans Told To Prepare For Another War With Russia (RT)
Germany Can’t Afford Rearmament, Let Alone a ‘War’ With Russia (Sp.)
Davos Admits Possibility Of Ukraine Defeat (ZH)
Ukraine Spy Chief: Win “Not Even Conceivable” Without Mass Mobilization (ZH)
The German Establishment Wants To Ban AfD (Amar)
Pelosi’s J6 Committee Deleted Over 100 Encrypted Files (PB)
No One Is Safe in an Era of Kafkaesque Absurdity (Brooks)
Mayorkas Says Border Is Secure But Biden Says It Isn’t (MN)
Supreme Court Rules Texas Must Replace Barbed Wire With Giant Red Carpet (BBee)
Supreme Court Rules It’s Illegal For National Guard To Guard Nation (BBee)

 

 


New Hampshire Governor Sununu’s home town.

 

 

Vivek

 

 

Tucker Canada

 

 

Tucker Rand Paul

 

 

Fani
https://twitter.com/i/status/1749817785122013580

 

 

Kash Patel

 

 

Trump Jan 22

 

 

Kari Lake

 

 

Trump hotel jobs

 

 

 

 

Time for dirty tricks?!

Trump ‘Honored’ By New Hampshire Win, Says Republican Party ‘Very United’ (Fox)

Former President Trump said he is “very honored” by his New Hampshire primary win Tuesday night, telling Fox News Digital that the Republican Party is “very united” behind his candidacy. Trump won the first-in-the-nation primary Tuesday night, defeating former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley. Trump also won the Iowa caucuses last week. During an exclusive interview with Fox News Digital shortly after the race was called, Trump said he was honored. “I’m very honored by the result,” Trump said. Trump also said he is “looking forward to going against the worst president in the history of our country.” New Hampshire – where independent voters who make up roughly 40% of the electorate can vote in either major party’s contest and have long played an influential role in the state’s storied presidential primary – was considered fertile ground for Haley.

And Haley spent plenty of time and resources in the state, securing the influential endorsement of popular Republican Gov. Chris Sununu. But Trump dominated for a second week in a row, cruising to victory in both critical early voting states. When asked if he felt Haley would suspend her campaign, he said, “I don’t know. She should.” “She should because, otherwise, we have to keep wasting money instead of spending on Biden,” Trump said. “If she doesn’t drop out, we have to waste money instead of spending it on Biden, which is our focus.” Trump, who was joined at a rally Monday night in New Hampshire by his former opponents who then endorsed him, including Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy and Gov. Doug Burgum of North Dakota, said the party is united.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis suspended his campaign on Sunday and endorsed Trump. “The party is very united except for her,” Trump said. “The party is very united, and we’re looking forward to going against the worst president in the history of our country,” he said. But Haley, during a speech after the race was called, noted that she got close to half of the vote in New Hampshire. She said she is “the last one standing next to Donald Trump” and added that the race is “far from over.” “New Hampshire is the first in the nation, not the last,” Haley said. She is now looking ahead to South Carolina’s primary on Feb. 24.

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“..Netanyahu understands the importance of these strategic relations with Cairo and he will not damage those ties..”

Israel Risks Dragging Egypt Into War (Blade)

It’s been more than a hundred days since Israel kicked off its Iron Swords operation in Gaza following the bloody attack of October 7, when more than 1,200 Israelis were brutally murdered at the hands of Hamas militants. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed to punish those responsible for the massacre, which also left more than 5,000 people wounded. He further promised to eliminate the Islamic group that controls Gaza, and to de-militarize the enclave that has posed a threat to Israel’s security. But more than three months down the line, officials in West Jerusalem still seem to be scratching their heads over how to achieve those goals. The main challenge is the continuous flow of arms, technology, and money to Gaza, from which the militants of Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad continue to fire rockets. And Israel believes it is coming from the Sinai Peninsula, smuggled through the border via the so-called Philadelphi Route.

The term emerged in 1982 following the peace treaty between Israel and Egypt and the subsequent demarcation of the border. According to that agreement, both sides deployed troops on their respective sides along the 14km line, a move that promised stability and security. But several years later, in 1987, during the First Intifada, Palestinians started digging tunnels under the axis, through which they smuggled goods and weapons, as well as militants and money. By 2005, when Israel evacuated its 17 settlements from Gaza and handed over control of the axis to the Palestinian Authority, the Islamic group already had hundreds of such tunnels, and their numbers continued to grow – especially after Hamas seized power in the enclave in 2007. “Initially, Egypt didn’t exert any significant efforts into stopping that smuggling, simply because it brought a lot of economic benefits to both sides,” said Dr. Ely Karmon, a senior research scholar at The International Institute for Counter-Terrorism.

“It was during this time that Hamas boosted its arms arsenal, smuggling in weapons, money and technologies. It was also then, when Iranian and Hezbollah experts and technicians arrived in Gaza and taught Hamas engineers on how to develop their own industry,” he added. Then, in 2011, came the Arab Spring. The long-term ruler of Egypt, Hosni Mubarak, was deposed, and the radical elements in Sinai started rearing their heads. Terror attacks have become a regular phenomenon, especially after 2014, when Daesh (Islamic State/IS) took control over most jihadist groups on the peninsula, establishing the so-called Wilayat Sinai. “These groups were against the newly established government of President Abdel Fattah A-Sisi. They were targeting the army and killing civilians across the country, so Cairo came to realize that there was cooperation between Hamas and those terrorists and it decided to break that link,” said Karmon.

Over the years, Cairo exerted multiple efforts into fighting the threat emanating from Sinai. It boosted its military presence on the peninsula, launched counterterrorism operations, and flooded hundreds of tunnels that linked Gaza to Egypt. But experts in Israel believe not all the loopholes were eliminated. Even more so, they are still being used to smuggle militants, weapons, and potentially Israeli hostages. This is why in recent weeks, a number of Israeli politicians, including Netanyahu, have stated that the Philadelphi Route should be recaptured, with Israel establishing full control over the territory. Karmon maintains Israel has no intention of occupying the area. Instead, the idea is that his country would just beef up its military presence in the region to maintain security. “Recapturing the area would be very difficult to execute, simply because we have a peace agreement with Egypt. Of course, there are right-wing voices who are calling for the occupation of Gaza or the building of settlements there, but Netanyahu understands the importance of these strategic relations with Cairo and he will not damage those ties,” the expert asserted.

However, in Egypt some are still worried. Hany Soliman, executive director of the Arab Center for Research and Studies (ACRS) in Cairo, says Netanyahu’s words are backed by actions. These include negotiations with the Americans on the construction of an underground wall on the Egyptian side. The project, which promises to be 1km deep and 13km long, will be equipped with sensors and other technology, enabling digging to be detected, and as such deterring radicals from trying their luck. The project is set to be funded by the US. But the possibility of such an endeavor taking place depends largely on the will of the Egyptians, says Soliman, and they might not want to rush it. “Firstly, on the political and security levels, Egypt will not sign such a protocol, especially at a time when there is a lack of clarity on Israeli intentions and when there are concerns about Israeli attempts to pass and impose their displacement plan,” he said. “And, secondly, let’s not forget the Palestinian Authority. It has full rights to object to this project. They can claim that the occupation of the Philadelphi axis is inconsistent with the Oslo Accords and that it infringes on their sovereignty”.

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“During the Russian presidency of the BRICS this year, we will try to do everything possible for Egypt to effectively integrate into the work of the group..”

Russia Will Do Everything to Integrate Egypt Into BRICS – Putin (Sp.)

Russia expects that Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Sisi will attend the BRICS summit in Russia’s Kazan scheduled for later in the year, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday. “We are waiting for you, dear Mr. Sisi, at the unification summit [of BRICS] in Kazan in October this year,” Putin said during the ceremony of the start of the construction of the fourth power unit of Dabaa nuclear power plant (NPP). Russia has planned more than 200 BRICS events, and Moscow expects that representatives of Egypt will take an active part in them, the president said. “New promising opportunities for building up our fruitful cooperation are opening up in connection with Egypt’s accession to the BRICS. I would like to emphasize that from the very beginning, Russia sincerely supported the desire of the Egyptian side to become a full member of this association. During the Russian presidency of the BRICS this year, we will try to do everything possible for Egypt to effectively integrate into the work of the group,” Putin said.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Sisi launched on Tuesday the construction of the fourth power unit of the Dabaa nuclear power plant (NPP) in Egypt via videoconference. Pouring the first concrete into the foundation of the building where the nuclear reactor will be located means the start of the construction of the entire new power unit. After this, the project will be implemented to full capacity — all four blocks of the nuclear power plant will be built simultaneously. Speaking about the Palestinian-Israeli conflict during the launching ceremony, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that he is in constant contact with his Egyptian counterpart on the issue.

“And in general, Sisi and I are in constant contact … we regularly discuss all the most significant issues on the international and regional agenda for our countries. In particular, we exchange opinions and coordinate positions in connection with the tragic development of the situation in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, and resolve issues of a humanitarian nature,” Putin said during the ceremony to launch the construction of the fourth power unit of the Dabaa nuclear power plant.

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“..catastrophic hunger. Intense fighting, access denials & restrictions + communications blackouts..”

UN Agency Says 570,000 People in Gaza Strip Face Dire Hunger (Sp.)

About 570,000 people in the Gaza Strip face dire hunger, and the work of humanitarian organizations is difficult due to access and communication problems, the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) said on Tuesday. “570,000 people in Gaza face catastrophic hunger. Intense fighting, access denials & restrictions + communications blackouts are hampering UNRWA’s ability to safely & effectively deliver aid. As risk of famine grows, UN calls for a critical increase in humanitarian access,” the UNRWA said on X . On October 7, 2023, Hamas launched a large-scale rocket attack against Israel from the Gaza Strip, while its fighters breached the border and opened fire on the military and civilians.

As a result, more than 1,200 people were killed in Israel and some 240 others were kidnapped. Israel launched retaliatory strikes, ordered a complete blockade of Gaza, and launched a ground invasion of the Palestinian enclave with the stated goal of eliminating Hamas fighters and rescuing the hostages. More than 25,000 people have been killed in Gaza so far as a result of the Israeli attacks, according to local officials. On November 24, Qatar brokered an agreement between Israel and Hamas for a temporary ceasefire and the exchange of some prisoners and hostages, as well as the delivery of humanitarian aid to Gaza. The truce was extended several times and expired on December 1.

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“At the same time, he stressed that the bloc nevertheless “closely monitors what Russia does”..”

No Direct Threat From Russia – NATO (RT)

NATO sees no threat from Russia toward any of its members, the US-led bloc’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told reporters on Tuesday during a press conference in Brussels. His comments come as several countries, including Germany and the Baltic states, have raised concerns of a potential future Russian attack. Answering questions from journalists following the signing of major new investments in artillery ammunition productions, Stoltenberg stated that, “We don’t see any direct or imminent threat against any NATO ally.” At the same time, he stressed that the bloc nevertheless “closely monitors what Russia does” and has increased its “vigilance and presence in the eastern part of the alliance,” in order to prevent any attacks on allied nations.

Meanwhile, German news outlets have reported in recent weeks that Berlin was preparing for a scenario in which Russia launches an “open attack” on NATO as early as the summer of 2025 after securing a major victory in Ukraine. German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius also warned on Monday that his country should be ready to respond to a possible Russian attack even though there is no real threat as of now. “Deterrence is the only effective means of positioning oneself against an aggressor from the outset,” Pistorius told ZDF, calling on Germany and its NATO allies to commit to strengthening their military capabilities. Similar concerns have been voiced by other NATO members, such as Estonia, whose Prime Minister Kaja Kallas suggested last week that the bloc has three to five years to prepare for a possible direct confrontation with Russia.

Moscow has dismissed any claims that it intends to attack any NATO members as “complete nonsense,” with President Vladimir Putin arguing that Russia has “no geopolitical, economic … or military interest” in doing so. At the same time, the Kremlin has for decades voiced concerns that it was the US and its NATO allies’ continuous expansion to the east that posed an existential threat to Russia. Moscow has cited this expansion, which it believes threatens its national security, as well as the refusal to rule out Ukrainian NATO membership in the future, as some of the key reasons for launching its offensive against Kiev in February 2022.

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There are more EU countries that tell these absurd stories.

Germans Told To Prepare For Another War With Russia (RT)

Germany should be ready to respond to a possible Russian attack, Defense Minister Boris Pistorius has warned. He said that to prepare for such a scenario, Germany and its NATO allies must commit to strengthening their military capabilities. In an interview with German public broadcaster ZDF on Monday, the defense chief pointed out that while Germany is not currently under a direct threat of attack, the country should do its best to be prepared for it. If Germany wants to be ready for an attack “that you don’t know if and when it will occur, then that means you have to arm yourself – and that’s what we’re currently doing together with allies in NATO,” he explained.

Pistorius went on to say that “deterrence is the only effective means of positioning oneself against an aggressor from the outset” as it signals to a potential adversary that the target is capable of striking back. To achieve such a posture, however, Germany must have “a credible deterrent” and be able to “wage a war that is forced upon us,” he noted. Commenting on a potential scenario in which Russia attacked the Baltics, Pistorius remarked that Berlin was setting up its “Lithuania Brigade” specifically to address those concerns. The unit, composed of about 4,800 soldiers is expected to be ready by 2027 and will be the first German force to be permanently stationed abroad since World War II. Pistorius suggested that amid the Ukraine conflict it would take Russia at least several years to be ready for a full-scale offensive, and that Western countries should use the time to intensively arm themselves.

The German tabloid Bild reported earlier this month, citing a classified document, that Germany is preparing for a scenario in which Russia launches an “open attack” on NATO in mid-2025, following major victories in Ukraine. Moscow mocked the prediction as a “zodiac forecast.” Russian President Vladimir Putin has dismissed claims that Russia could attack NATO as “complete nonsense,” arguing that Moscow has “no geopolitical, economic… or military interest” in doing so. Still, the Kremlin has for decades voiced concerns about the US-led military bloc’s expansion towards Russian borders, viewing it as an existential threat.

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“Not only is Germany’s justification for rearmament in question but also the nation’s ability to afford it..”

Germany Can’t Afford Rearmament, Let Alone a ‘War’ With Russia (Sp.)

Germany must take into account the possibility of a military conflict with Russia and prepare for it over the next three-five years, Defense Minister Boris Pistorius told ZDF on January 22. He insisted that the German Bundeswehr armed forces should become “a credible deterrent,” and that a German combat brigade would be deployed in the Baltics to become “fully combat-ready” by 2027. In December, Pistorius signed an agreement for the permanent deployment of a Bundeswehr brigade to Lithuania. and announced that the reintroduction of compulsory military service in Germany is now on the table. Does Russia really present an imminent threat to German national security? “If you ask me, and if you ask most people in my party, the answer is unequivocally no,” Gunnar Beck, Member of the European Parliament for the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party who is currently Vice-President of the Identity & Democracy Group in the Parliament, told Sputnik.

“Ever since 1990, at the end of the Soviet Union, the Russian government has gone out of its way to intensify economic relations between Russia and Germany. We had extremely favorable energy contracts with Russia. And Russia was a growing export market for our agricultural and industrial goods. It’s due to our government’s policy, vis-a-vis Ukraine conflict that relations with Russia are now almost at an all time low. So, on the one hand, I think, German policy and EU policy has been a provocation. Nonetheless, I think that the Russian reaction to the sanctions in particular has been tough, but at the same time measured. So in my view, Russia is no immediate security threat to Germany. Categorically not.” Not only is Germany’s justification for rearmament in question but also the nation’s ability to afford it, according to Beck. German industry is in a dire state as a result of the government’s policies, he stressed.

“Germany currently finds itself in what is probably the most serious economic crisis since the Second World War,” Beck said. “The government’s policies (…) are affecting all leading branches of German industry, which is suffering from high inflation, lack of qualified labor, bureaucracy and high tax levels. As a result, our exports have declined significantly. So we are in crisis, and German industry, which has always been the backbone of German prosperity, in particular, is in crisis.” He listed three major reasons for the new talk of militarization: First, the German government’s energy and climate change policy; Second, unprecedented migration into Germany from outside Europe of unskilled workers and the astronomical cost to German public finances; Third, Germany’s policies on Ukraine and sanctions imposed on the Russian economy.

Berlin’s decision to follow Washington’s lead and slap sweeping sanctions on Russia has backfired on Germans on a much greater scale than on any of their Russian counterparts, according to the politician. “In my view, Germany is in no fit state economically and financially to embark upon a massive rearmament program,” Beck said. “If the German government seriously did so, the consequence would be a further significant worsening of the economic crisis. The only way to finance such rearmament would be through a complete reversal of all the other policies and massive remigration of migrants from Germany. The government has given no indication that it is prepared to do so. In other words, I think these declarations are probably largely symbolic. Germany simply cannot afford it.”

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“The situation is becoming undeniable and the fact that the elites are allowing discussion about a Ukraine loss suggests that defeat might be closer than we know..”

Davos Admits Possibility Of Ukraine Defeat (ZH)

In a move that would have been unthinkable a year ago, the WEF has formed a discussion panel at their annual Davos conference titled “What If Ukraine Loses?” The panel represents, at the very least, an admission by the globalists that Ukraine could be defeated by Russia despite the deluge of money, armaments and intel assets that Ukraine has been given access to by western governments.Since 2022, the narrative has shifted from talk of complete victory over Russia including the retaking of the Donbas and even Crimea, to merely holding the current front and keeping a steady supply of ammo and recruits. The realities on the ground cannot be denied. The long vaunted “counter-offensive” that was supposed to crush Russian forces was a complete failure. No significant ground was gained and no significant victories have been won. It was a considerable propaganda error to hype up the counter-offensive the way Ukraine did, because when it turned out to be a dud all their other claims quickly came under suspicion.

At the end of 2023, the average age of Ukrainian soldiers was older than 40 (compare this to the US where the average age is 27). Rumors out of Ukraine abound that most younger soldiers are dead and that collection teams (government enforcers) now prowl the streets of cities like Kiev. They search for and kidnap any fighting age men they find, only to send them to the front with little or no training. These are the kinds of stories that go mostly ignored by the wider western media. When they are mentioned, it is usually in support of the Ukrainian government, chastising people who don’t want to fight and die in a globalist proxy war as “draft dodgers.” The level to which journalists have acted as a propaganda arm of NATO and Ukraine has been grotesque, but it does help to explain why so many Americans and Europeans were deluded about the war for so long. All they have heard about for the past two years is that Ukraine is on the verge of imminent victory.

It’s simply not true. This is likely why the WEF is now forced to address the issue at Davos – The situation is becoming undeniable and the fact that the elites are allowing discussion about a Ukraine loss suggests that defeat might be closer than we know. The panel itself is largely made up of Ukrainian representatives who are there to spin the facts, not have a frank discussion about the realities in the trenches. Journalist Niall Ferguson seems to be the only member with a modicum of honesty on the panel, as he admits the situation in Ukraine has degraded dramatically. He does, however, join with the Ukrainians in admonishing the American public’s growing opposition to monetary and military support. The underlying message? If Ukraine loses, it will be your fault.

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Make peace you fools.

Ukraine Spy Chief: Win “Not Even Conceivable” Without Mass Mobilization (ZH)

“The shortage [of manpower] is palpable,” Ukraine’s military top spy chief, Lieutenant General Kyrylo Budanov, told Financial Times in a new interview, describing the most pressing situation facing the country after nearly two years of war.He warned that “it is not even conceivable to think that we can do without mobilization” — which reflects the consensus of the military’s leadership, and strongly points to staggering losses by the Ukrainian side, though an official running casualty count has never been revealed. Russia has also likely suffered immense losses, but can tap into much greater manpower and artillery, which is also allegedly being supplied from such nefarious actors as North Korea. As part of its report, FT has reviewed that Zelensky recently revealed that his army chiefs requested him “to mobilize about 400,000 to 500,000 new soldiers to replace those killed or wounded, and to rest those involved in the most intense fighting.”

Still, Budanov tried to paint an optimistic picture at a moment that even mainstream US press has lamented the current state of the war as a total failure and disaster for Ukraine: Ukrainian troops never managed to decisively breach Russia’s heavily fortified defences: the frontline remains almost the same as it looked a year ago. But Budanov maintains he was not wrong. “Although the original plans suggested something different, we kept our promise. This summer, our units repeatedly entered Crimea,” he said, referring to his commandos sneaking on to the peninsula to carry out raids on Russian bases. Not only have Ukrainian operatives done brief but ineffective raids into Crimea, but the last several weeks have seen stepped-up cross border drone and rocket attacks against Russian border regions, particularly targeting Belgorod city, resulting in dozens of casualties over months of sporadic waves of strikes.

Many war analysts have looked upon these attacks on Russian territory as a sign of increasing desperation. The Ukrainian strikes have been focused on civilian areas of Belgorod, and have little or no strategic value, but is more an act of ‘revenge’ and perhaps part of seeking to impose a “cost” on the Russian population in hopes of pressuring the Putin government. Kiev has been mulling a new mass mobilization since at least December, when media reports first cited Zelensky as saying, “This is a serious number,” while explaining further he has to look at more arguments to support this direction.” He added at the time, “I need concrete information on what will (then) happen with the one-million military of Ukraine,” according to The Kyiv Independent.

Any new mass mobilization is likely to be met with fierce pushback among the population and some government officials. Already there have been signs of fracture within the government over what to do as it’s increasingly clear Ukrainian forces are ‘losing’ – especially in manpower, arms, and ammo. Zelensky’s security services and military recruiters have also been accused of abusing their power under martial law, also amid allegations of corruption, with The New York Times having previously reported Ukrainian army recruiters have become “increasingly aggressive in their efforts to replenish the ranks, in some cases pulling men off the streets and whisking them to recruiting centers using intimidation and even physical force.” There have even been reports of men with diagnosed mental disabilities being subjected to attempted drafts. Currently, men ages 18-60 may be mobilized and still have no right to leave Ukraine, per the stipulations under martial law.

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On its way to first place.

The German Establishment Wants To Ban AfD (Amar)

With really bad ideas, you can often ask two pertinent questions. First, why will it not work? Second, why would it be harmful if it did? That rule holds in Germany, where the really bad idea of banning the party Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) is currently getting much debate. The background of this debate is simple. Founded a decade ago, the AfD has established itself as a lasting feature of the political landscape. A populist right-wing party (roughly comparable to, for instance, the Austrian FPÖ), it brings together politicians and voters across a spectrum of positions. In the AfD, this spectrum ranges from very solidly conservative to far right. Still comparatively small, the AfD is significant. With currently just over 40,000 members, it holds 78 of 736 seats in the Bundestag, the central parliament in Berlin.

Importantly, it is also well-represented in 14 of 16 regional parliaments, where it occupies 242 seats of 1898 (for all regional legislatures taken together). In terms of its impact on national debates, it clearly punches far above this quantitative weight. Most importantly, however, the AfD is on a roll, on both the central and regional levels. If Germans were to vote for the Bundestag now – and thus in effect the chancellor’s office – the AfD would net 23%. That can be compared with the traditional center-left SPD, leading the hapless coalition government, at 14%. All parties from the ruling coalition (SPD, Greens, and the market-liberal FDP) together muster just 31% approval. On the regional level, the picture is largely the same, with particularly pronounced AfD advances in the area of the former East Germany.

For the Land of Brandenburg, for instance, a poll has the AfD in the lead with 28%, easily beating both the CDU mainstream conservatives (18%) and the SPD (17%). Adding insult to injury, AfD co-leader Tino Chrupalla is also surpassing the SPD’s Chancellor Olaf Scholz on the personal-popularity scale, which is admittedly a low bar, as Scholz has managed to become one of the most disliked German politicians ever. No wonder that Germany’s under-qualified and somewhat hysterical minister of the economy, Robert Habeck, in whose head all of Russia seems to live rent-free, is publicly hallucinating that the AfD wants to make Germany like Russia. (The irony is, of course, is that with Habeck’s own mismanaged ministerial portfolio, quite a few Germans would welcome having Russia’s growth rates.)

Such rhetoric, as well as the timing of when the idea of an AfD ban is being floated, betrays the fact that the attempt to popularize the idea of outlawing the AfD is an opportunistic response to its increasing electoral clout, which of course cannot be openly admitted. So, those in favor of a ban argue that the AfD is an extremist party. But crucially here, extremism has a specific, legally (and narrowly) defined meaning. According to the German Constitution (Article 21.2), the Constitutional Court (and only that court) can prohibit a party when it substantially endangers the constitutional order of the Federal Republic or its existence itself. An important and often overlooked caveat, is it is not enough for a party to display hostility to the constitutional order. A prohibition is only an option if the party does so in an “active-combative, aggressive manner,” as Germany’s Ministry of the Interior puts it.

Only two parties have ever been banned, a far-right one in 1952 and a far-left one in 1956. Other attempts to proscribe parties (or to be precise, the same party) have also failed twice: In 2003 and again in 2017, the Constitutional Court refused to outlaw the very far-right NPD (Nationaldemokratische Partei Deutschlands).

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Half the “evidence” is gone. How convenient.

Pelosi’s J6 Committee Deleted Over 100 Encrypted Files (PB)

It has been confirmed that the House Select Committee on Jan. 6 deleted more than 100 encrypted files from their investigation just days before Republicans gained control of the House. The House Administration Committee’s Oversight Subcommittee, chaired by Republican Barry Loudermilk of Georgia, is conducting an inquiry into January 6, 2021. The panel is looking at the security shortcomings that day, as well as the “actions” of the previous select committee investigating the Capitol riot. Loudermilk told Fox News Digital last week that his inquiry has entered a “new phase” with increased backing from House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) who has pledged extra resources to the panel’s investigation. According to sources familiar with Loudermilk’s investigation, the former J6 select committee, chaired by Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS) was required by House rules to turn over all documents from its investigation to the new, GOP-led panel after Republicans took control of the House of Representatives following the 2022 midterm elections.

According to Fox News Digital, Thompson promised Loudermilk that the J6 select committee would give over four terabytes of archival material, but the new committee got just around two terabytes. Loudermilk’s committee hired a digital forensics outfit to search hard drives for material they were not provided. According to people familiar with the investigation, the forensics team discovered 117 files that had been erased and encrypted. The sources revealed that the files were erased on January 1, 2023, just days before Thompson’s staff was scheduled to transmit the material to the new committee. The forensics team has successfully retrieved all 117 deleted and encrypted files. Loudermilk is now requesting answers and passwords to get access to the material. Loudermilk issued to Thompson asking access to his forensic team’s retrieved digital data.

“As you acknowledged in your July 7, 2023 letter, the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol (Select Committee) did not archive all Committee records as required by House Rules,” Loudermilk wrote. “You wrote that you sent specific transcribed interviews and depositions to the White House and Department of Homeland Security but did not archive them with the Clerk of the House.” Loudermilk added that Thompson “claimed that you turned over 4-terabytes of digital files, but the hard drives archived by the Select Committee with the Clerk of the House contain less than 3- terabytes of data.” The Republican Congressman said that after doing a forensic study of the data and archived hard drives, he was able to retrieve “numerous digital records from hard drives archived by the Select Committee.”

“One recovered file disclosed the identity of an individual whose testimony was not archived by the Select Committee,” Loudermilk wrote. “Further, we found that most of the recovered files are password-protected, preventing us from determining what they contain.” Loudermilk requested that Thompson provide him “a list of passwords for all password-protected files created by the Select Committee” so that his committee could “access these files and ensure they are properly archived.” Meanwhile, the congressman sent letters to the White House general counsel and the General Counsel of the Department of Homeland Security, asking for “unedited and unredacted transcripts” of White House and DHS testimony before the old select committee. Loudermilk’s committee is aware that transcripts of these interviews exist, but claims they were not given over by the Thompson-led investigation.

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“..the man Americans elected as the 45th president—and his team members—has been subjected to more bizarre allegations, secret investigations, partisan impeachments, preposterous indictments, and prejudiced legal proceedings than even Kafka could have imagined..”

No One Is Safe in an Era of Kafkaesque Absurdity (Brooks)

“Someone must have been telling lies about Josef K., he knew he had done nothing wrong but, one morning, he was arrested.”—Franz Kafka, “The Trial.”

In Kafka’s early-20th-century novel, a reputable bank clerk is caught up in a prosecutorial nightmare. The story of Josef K. begins when court authorities suddenly arrive at his residence to tell him he’s to be indicted, but they can’t or won’t explain the exact nature of the charges against him. Josef K.’s accusers leave him with feelings of apprehension and anxiety. Throughout the novel, he struggles to defend himself within a hostile and complex legal process. At the end of the story, he’s led away to a summary execution. During the entire ordeal, the accused never really understands the reasons behind his mysterious prosecution. This dark story about the destruction of an innocent man led to the term “Kafkaesque” entering the English language as a way to describe situations in which honorable people are threatened by unfounded allegations. Kafka had a special talent for identifying the convergence between reality and absurdity.

A hundred years after “The Trial” was first published, the West has descended into an era in which absurd allegations are the new normal. In the Rainbow Reichs of the woke, witch hunting has become the order of the day.
One of the most notorious Kafkaesque events in modern history developed around the unforeseen political success of President Donald J. Trump.Over recent years, the man Americans elected as the 45th president—and his team members—has been subjected to more bizarre allegations, secret investigations, partisan impeachments, preposterous indictments, and prejudiced legal proceedings than even Kafka could have imagined. President Trump has endured some of the most savage and desperate partisan assaults in U.S. history. Despite it all, he has retained the loyalty of legions of ordinary citizens and is the leading candidate for reelection in 2024. Individuals throughout North America are praying that President Trump’s landslide victory in Iowa will lead to a decisive victory for the “Make America Great Again” movement.

[..] Few drag queen story hours feature the novels of Kafka, but the author’s insights remain valuable. Kafka understood that corrupt authorities have the capacity to ruin almost anyone they disapprove of. “The Trial” shows how Orwellian legal institutions can isolate individuals, make them appear guilty, and render them helpless. So far, President Trump has overcome the moral failures of the American judicial system, and he has an excellent chance of winning back the White House in 2024. Donald T. isn’t likely to suffer the same fate as Kafka’s Josef K. Francine C.’s future is considerably less certain. Without political support, financial resources, and professional help, challenges to the left by intrepid citizens are unlikely to continue. That’s why the suffocating nature of our Kafkaesque culture must be forthrightly resisted by honorable men and women.

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“The president’s been clear, he’s been clear that we need to move on the border, he needs resources to deal with the situation at the border.”s

Mayorkas Says Border Is Secure But Biden Says It Isn’t (MN)

During the White House press briefing Monday, a reporter asked Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre to explain why Joe Biden and DHS head Alejandro Mayorkas give conflicting answers when asked if the border is secure or not. As we highlighted, last Friday Biden admitted that the border is not secure and stated that has has not believed it has been secure for a decade, despite the fact that Mayorkas has stated and testified multiple times that he believes the border is secure. “On Friday, President Biden said that he does not believe the border is secure, which is different from what Secretary Mayorkas has testified multiple times on the hill, why do they have two different views of the security of the border?” the reporter asked during Monday’s briefing.

Jean-Pierre used the tired excuse that Biden is waiting on Congress to provide more funding for border security. “The president’s been clear, he’s been clear that we need to move on the border, he needs resources to deal with the situation at the border. That’s why they’re having this conversation at the Senate, on the senate level and that’s why he’s asking for more resources,” Jean-Pierre said, adding “There’s an issue at the border, we need to deal with it and we have to act now. There’s an urgent need to act now.” The claim that Biden is waiting for funding for more security is laughable considering that he is ordering Border Patrol to actively take down barriers erected by Texas state authorities and the National Guard:

Elsewhere during the briefing Monday, Fox News reporter Peter Doocy pointed out that “authorities in Fairfax County, Virginia, ignored an ICE detainer. They released an illegal immigrant from Honduras, who was charged with sexually assaulting a Virginia minor and production of sexual abuse material.” He then asked Jean-Pierre “Doesn’t that go to show that, as record numbers of people appear at the border, you guys have no idea what kind of people are coming into this country?” Jean-Pierre, of course, denied the charge and again blamed Congress. She also claimed that Biden has recently visited the border, when in reality he hasn’t been there for over a year, and even that only visit was little more than a pit stop.

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“..It says that in the Constitution somewhere. Like, in Section 3 Article B or whatever.”

Supreme Court Rules Texas Must Replace Barbed Wire With Giant Red Carpet (BBee)

In yet another 5-4 decision, the United States Supreme Court has ruled that Texas must remove all barbed wire along the border and replace it with a massive, plush red carpet. “How will migrants be able to get in the country if there’s barbed wire in the way?” said a visibly confused Justice Sotomayor. “They might get hurt! An elegant red carpet makes much more sense. It’s soft and red and can helpfully point the way to gaps along our border and make our new migrants feel welcome. It says that in the Constitution somewhere. Like, in Section 3 Article B or whatever.”

The border patrol responded to the ruling immediately and is now hard at work cutting gaps in the barbed wire fence and rolling out a red carpet across the border. “Hooo boy! This is just like in the Hollywood picture shows!” said one officer while rolling out a carpet for a small band of Al Qaeda operatives and Somali pirates. “Welcome to America, friends! You’re all stars to us!” The ruling also specified that migrants be supplied with limousines, bodyguards, and expensive gift bags filled with face creams and jewelry. “It’s the least we could do,” said Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson. “It says that in the fourth paragraph of the 38th Amendment, I’m pretty sure.” At publishing time, Texas Governor Greg Abbott had desperately attempted to deter migrants by lining the red carpet with bear traps.

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“Texas is being ordered to open its border completely and let millions of people flood the state and the rest of the country until everything Americans hold dear is left a smoldering ruin..”

Supreme Court Rules It’s Illegal For National Guard To Guard Nation (BBee)

In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court has ruled that it’s now illegal for the Texas National Guard to guard Texas or the nation. “Using the National Guard to guard the nation is an egregious misuse of the National Guard,” wrote Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson, who sided with the majority. “When the federal government has decreed that the nation not be guarded so that millions of illegal immigrants will swarm the border and settle in cities across the nation to swing the 2024 presidential election for Biden, states have no right to disobey that decree by guarding their states.” As a result of the ruling, Texas is being ordered to open its border completely and let millions of people flood the state and the rest of the country until everything Americans hold dear is left a smoldering ruin. “It’s the compassionate thing to do,” said Jackson. At publishing time, the government had asked the National Guard to return to its normal task of fighting endless foreign wars.

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Excess deaths

 

 


One of the two remaining northern white rhinos in the world, guarded 24 hours a day.

 

 

Acorn

 

 

Chicken hypnosis

 

 

Owl

 

 


Pecteilis radiata is a species of orchid found in China, Japan, Korea and Russia. It is commonly known as the white egret flower. It is easily grown from tubers, and rewards you with blooms shaped like white birds with wings spread in flight.

 

 

Pi

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Jun 232023
 


John Atkinson Grimshaw Battersea Bridge 1885

 

Russian Army Gets Enough Recruits To Form Regiment Per Day – Shoigu (RT)
Ukraine Expands General Mobilization (RT)
‘No Way to Recruit People’: GOP Seeks to Codify Pentagon Drag Show Ban (Sp.)
Putin Says Western Countries Seem to Be Ready to Fight to Last Ukrainian (Sp.)
NATO Trainers Knowingly Sent Ukrainian Troops To Their Deaths (Scott Ritter)
Demilitarization, Denazification: A Sanitary Zone For Ukraine (Helmer)
US/NATO Are Playing ‘Russian Roulette’. Do They Want A Nuclear War? (Trenin)
Zelensky Bans Russian Books (RT)
On Horseradish & Nuclear War (Scott Ritter)
New Catastrophe Looms In Kosovo As West ‘Toys’ With International Law (TASS)
Global Financial System Exhausted, Not Up to New Challenges – Macron (Sp.)
Biden Sends Sullivan, Nuland To Turn BRICS War Skeptics Against Russia (ZH)
The Greater Eurasia Project: Building Bridges, Breaking Barriers (Pepe Escobar)
CIA Vet Warns US Intel ‘Will Do Everything’ to Help Dems in 2024 Race (Sp.)
New Bombshell Evidence Against Bidens, DOJ, AG Garland (ZH)
US Justice is Blind – Unless Your Name is Hunter Biden (Tweedie)
Tucker Calls Out ‘Media Hysteria Typhoon’ Over RFK Jr. (ZH)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RFK Who we are

 

 

 

 

While Modi is in Washington, Obama, visiting Athens, tells Modi what to do at home.

Obama

 

 

The submersible imploded on Sunday, killing all on board. We were not allowed to know until now.

 

 

 

 

“On average, 1,336 people enter service under a contract with the Russian Armed Forces per 24 hours..”

Russian Army Gets Enough Recruits To Form Regiment Per Day – Shoigu (RT)

The Russian Army is recruiting enough new personnel to complete the formation of its reserve force, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said on Thursday. Enough applicants are signing formal contracts with the ministry to form a new regiment every day, he added. A total of 114,000 people have joined the Russian Armed Forces as contract servicemen to date, Shoigu told President Vladimir Putin at a Russian National Security Council session. An additional 52,000 people have joined the military ranks as volunteers, he said. “On average, 1,336 people enter service under a contract with the Russian Armed Forces per 24 hours,” Shoigu said, adding that “we de facto get a [new] regiment every day.” Russia is now actively forming a reserve force that will include a new corps, a field army and five new regiments for the existing field armies, the defense minister said.

A field army in Russia includes several army corps and accounts for more than 40,000 servicemen on average. A Russian army corps has an established strength of between 20,000 and 40,000 servicemen and includes several brigades and regiments depending on its composition. “We are about to finish the formation of a reserve army by late June,” the minister said, adding that almost 3,800 military equipment pieces have already been supplied to the troops and will be used to outfit the newly formed units. According to Shoigu, the volunteers are “eager to join the fight” on the frontlines, where the Russian troops are currently repelling a Ukrainian offensive, which was launched earlier in June. The minister said that Moscow has no plans to send them into the fray right now. “There is no urgent need for that,”he said, adding that the fresh recruits should “undergo serious training first and that is what they do.” He still praised the “highest motivation” of the Russian troops.

In mid-June, Putin told military correspondents and bloggers that Russia sees no need for another military draft campaign right now. At that time, he also said that over 150,000 people had signed a contract with the Russian Defense Ministry since January. Shoigu’s report comes as Ukrainian officials in some regions take drastic steps to ensure the inflow of recruits to the Ukrainian army. Kiev declared general mobilization back in February 2022, when Russia launched its military campaign in Ukraine. This week, several Ukrainian media outlets reported that authorities in western Ivano-Frankovsk Region barred local healthcare providers from carrying out planned hospital treatments of any patients eligible for conscription without prior coordination with the local enlistment office. Putin has also stated that Kiev should not be able to replenish its manpower indefinitely even with the West’s military aid. “It seems Ukraine’s Western allies are indeed prepared to wage the war to the last Ukrainian,” according to the president.

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What a difference. It’s now everyone. Want to become a doctor? Too bad.

Ukraine Expands General Mobilization (RT)

Residents of the Obolonsky district in the Ukrainian capital who are eligible for mobilization must report to the military recruitment offices within ten days, even if they do not receive a personal notice, the local draft commissariat said on Thursday. The document, signed by commissar Alexey Privala, was posted on social media, as well as reprinted by the Ukrainian newspaper Strana. Responding to the outlet’s inquiry, Privala’s office claimed the order was nothing new and that such notices were being posted regularly. What is a precedent in the district, however, is the blanket call-up of all draftees. The western Ukrainian city of Ivano-Frankovsk has already enacted the same measure. Their orders, dated June 13, also refer to the mobilization of vehicles and forbid residents from moving without the explicit permission of the draft commissariat.

The Ivano-Frankovsk notice set a ten-day deadline for all men subject to the draft notice to report for service. The Obolonsky district commissariat has also referred to the same ten-day deadline. Its orders apply not only to the men registered in the district, but even those residing there temporarily, according to Strana. Ukraine’s Chernigov Region reported on Wednesday that it was struggling to meet its mobilization quota. More than 20,000 people have not reported following their summons, regional draft commissar Oleg Goncharuk has admitted. The expanded mobilization measures come as the long-heralded “counteroffensive” on the Zaporozhye front fails to dislodge Russian forces after more than two weeks of fighting.

The attack was “not meeting expectations on any front,”Western officials told CNN on Thursday, while President Vladimir Zelensky acknowledged on Wednesday that progress had been “slower than desired.” According to Russian officials, Ukraine has suffered up to 13,000 casualties since June 4, and is in the process of regrouping its brigades to try again. National Security Council Secretary Nikolay Patrushev and Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu briefed President Vladimir Putin on Thursday that many Western-supplied vehicles were among the 246 tanks, 152 infantry fighting vehicles, and 443 armored vehicles Ukraine lost during the attempted attacks.

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Should Ukraine follow US example in mobilization? Zelensky would be an excellent drag queen.

‘No Way to Recruit People’: GOP Seeks to Codify Pentagon Drag Show Ban (Sp.)

After a drag show advertised as a “family-friendly” event was canceled at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada in early June, at the start of Pride Month, the Defense Department issued a statement to say that such events were “not a suitable use” of resources. After a de-facto Pentagon ban on drag shows in the military went into effect at the start of June, Republicans at the US House Armed Services Committee have urged seeing this codified in law. An amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) was put forward by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) to bar funding for such performances. “I think it’s time for us to do something to make our voice known that we will not let this happen in the US military – woke ideology and the drag queen shows have no place in our military, zero, bupkis. That is not the way to recruit people,” Rep. Mark Alford (R-Mo.) said about the provision, which was passed 33-26.

The NDAA, the annual defense policy bill, passed the House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday night after a session that considered over 800 amendments. The Committee also passed a provision put forward by Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) to suspend a contentious initiative called the Navy Digital Ambassador Program. After the Navy had opted to select sailor Joshua Kelley, a TikTok drag queen known as Harpy Daniels, to reach out to potential recruits on social media, it had triggered a flurry of criticism. The current move by the House Armed Services Committee comes as Matt Gaetz wrote to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley, and “demanded answers” on “why these drag shows are still occurring” despite the two officials having testified in March that the Department of Defense did not endorse them.

Both Austin and Milley had claimed that they were not aware of such performances on military bases. According to US reports, drag shows have been hosted at Nellis Air Force Base both in 2021 and 2022. The event cancelled by the Pentagon at the military base in Nevada had been advertised ahead of the scheduled performance as a “family-friendly” one, involving three artists, including a former contestant on “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” “As Secretary Austin has said, the DoD will not host drag events at US military installations or facilities. Hosting these types of events in federally funded facilities is not a suitable use of DoD resources,” Sabrina Singh, deputy press secretary for the department, had stated in early June.

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“[Military] equipment, of course, can be supplied additionally. But the mobilization reserve is not unlimited..”

Putin Says Western Countries Seem to Be Ready to Fight to Last Ukrainian (Sp.)

Ukrainian troops launched a large-scale offensive in five sectors of the South Donetsk direction on June 4 but failed to achieve their goals, according to the Russian Defense Ministry. It looks like Western countries are ready to fight until the last Ukrainian, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday. “[Military] equipment, of course, can be supplied additionally. But the mobilization reserve is not unlimited. And it seems that Ukraine’s Western allies really decided to fight Russia to the last Ukrainian,” Putin said at a meeting of the Security Council. Kiev has already lost over 13,000 people during its counteroffensive, Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev said. “As for the personnel … it [Kiev’s loss] is more than 13,000 [persons],” Patrushev said at a meeting with members of the Russian Security Council held by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Moreover, Russian forces have already destroyed 246 Ukrainian tanks, including 13 of the Western type, as well as 42 multiple launch rocket systems, two anti-aircraft missile systems, 10 tactical fighters, four helicopters, 264 unmanned aerial vehicles and 424 units of motor vehicles, which Kiev has used during its counteroffensive, Patrushev added. The figures are based on the generalized data for the period from June 4-21, provided by various departments, the Russian official noted. Ukrainian troops have slowed down their activity after 16 days of hostilities and are regrouping, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said. “After 16 days of active hostilities, having suffered significant losses, [the enemy] is regrouping and re-equipping, gathering parts of battalions at the moment,” Shoigu said during a meeting of the Russian Security Council.

The Russian armed forces will complete the creation of a reserve army by the end of June and of an army corps in the near future, with the formations scheduled to receive over 3,700 pieces of equipment, Sergei Shoigu added. “We are forming reserves as part of the army corps, the army, plus five regiments of the 20th tank army. Everything is going according to plan. In fact, we will complete the formation of the reserve army by the end of June and finalize the formation of the army corps there soon,” Shoigu said at a meeting with permanent members of the Russian Security Council. As for now, these five regiments, both in terms of personnel and equipment, are already formed by 60%, the Russian defense chief added.

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This is what “cannon fodder” means.

NATO Trainers Knowingly Sent Ukrainian Troops To Their Deaths (Scott Ritter)

Ukraine sent one of its best brigades into combat earlier this month as part of its long-awaited counteroffensive aimed at retaking areas controlled by Russian forces. Leading the charge near the town of Orekhov, in Zaporozhye Region, was the 47th Mechanized Brigade, armed with NATO equipment and – most importantly – employing it using the US-led bloc’s combined arms doctrine and tactics. Prior to the operation, this brigade spent months at a base in Germany learning “Western know-how” in combined-arms warfare. Helping them prepare for the fighting to come was KORA, the German-made NATO computer simulation system, designed to allow officers and non-commissioned officers to closely replicate battlefield conditions and, in doing so, better develop ideal courses of action against a designated enemy – in this case, Russia.


If there was ever an example of how a purpose-built Ukrainian NATO proxy force would perform against a Russian enemy, the 47th Brigade was the ideal case study. However, within days of initiating its attack, the group was close to literally decimated, with more than 10% of the over 100 US-made M-2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles destroyed or abandoned on the field of battle, and hundreds of the brigade’s 2,000-strong complement dead or wounded. German-made Leopard 2 tanks and mine-clearing vehicles joined the Bradleys as wrecks in the fields west of Orekhov, having failed to breach the first line of Russian defenses. The reasons for this defeat can be boiled down to the role played by KORA in creating a false sense of confidence on the part of the officers and men of the 47th Brigade. Unfortunately, as the Ukrainians and their NATO masters found out, what works in a computer simulation does not automatically equate to battlefield success.

[..] One of the things I’m most proud of in my military career is the fact that the Marine assault breaching operations done during Desert Storm unfolded almost exactly as my team and I had predicted in the JANUS simulation. After the war, General Caulfield credited my team and I with playing a major role in designing the successful Marine attack and, in the process, saving hundreds of Marine lives. We achieved this result by adhering to basic principles of professionalism and integrity, refusing to cut corners for the sake of expediency and being realistic about the amount of military combat power that would be needed to be applied over time to achieve the desired result.


If only the NATO trainers, who knowingly sent the men of the Ukrainian 47th Mechanized Brigade and scores of other Ukrainian brigades to their deaths, adhered to such standards. Instead, they sent those troops in a futile attempt to breach defenses that were impossible to overcome, given the disparity in training and force composition between the Ukrainian and Russian forces. Had they been diligent, there would be far fewer Ukrainian widows and orphaned children mourning the loss of their husbands and fathers. This, more than anything, is the primary lesson to be derived from the Ballad of KORA and JANUS – neither NATO nor the United States cares about the lives of the Ukrainians they have undertaken to train in the horrific art of war.

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”..that leaves nothing of the Ukraine except the territory which the Poles and Hungarians might not be bold enough to take.”

Demilitarization, Denazification: A Sanitary Zone For Ukraine (Helmer)

What follows is the first detailed discussion in the open in Moscow of how the map of this territory should be drawn when the Ukrainian offensive reaches its end, and the Russian advance begins. Left out of mention is who in Moscow will be drawing the new map. This is because Putin has annonced he is delegating to the General Staff. “Russia’s military leadership,” he said on June 9, “is realistic in its assessments of the situation and will proceed from these realities as it continues to plan up our actions in the short term.” Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov had already said the same a year ago. “Now the geography is different,” he concluded an interview in Moscow on July 20, 2022. “Take the HIMARS. [Ukrainian] Defence Minister Alexei Reznikov boasts that they have already received 300-kilometre ammunition.

This means our geographic objectives will move even further from the current line. We cannot allow the part of Ukraine that Vladimir Zelensky, or whoever replaces him, will control to have weapons that pose a direct threat to our territory or to the republics that have declared their independence and want to determine their own future.” “[Question:] How can this be arranged, technically? This is our territory. Then there are the republics that will accede to us. In fact they already have – the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions. … Further west, there is the territory controlled by Vladimir Zelensky. They have a common border. So either there should be a 300 kilometre buffer zone or something between them, or we need to march all the way to Lvov inclusive.” “[Lavrov:] There is a solution to this problem. The military know this.”

“Comrade servicemen,” Lavrov added last week on a visit to the 201st Russian Military Base in Tajikistan, “they are getting ready, in earnest, to supply the F-16 jets. Some say they will make two squadrons available, others say eight. They are gearing up to continue the escalation of the war against us. There’s an ongoing debate about where these planes will take off from. Our armed forces and the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces are well aware of ongoing developments and report to the Supreme Commander-in-Chief. We must keep in mind that one version of the F-16 can carry nuclear weapons. If they do not understand this, they are worthless military strategists and planners.” The General Staff have no reason to speak publicly on this point.

Privately, a source in a position to know says: “the General Staff are not satisfied with the Dnieper [line of defence]. It will run from a small town on the border with Belarus to Transnistria. They will solve that problem as well. But mainly, Belarus has to be protected from the south. And most importantly, that leaves nothing of the Ukraine except the territory which the Poles and Hungarians might not be bold enough to take.”

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“The fear of the atomic bomb, present in the second half of the twentieth century, has disappeared. Nuclear weapons have been taken out of the equation.”

US/NATO Are Playing ‘Russian Roulette’. Do They Want A Nuclear War? (Trenin)

In principle, nuclear weapons have been “on the table” for Russia from the very beginning of the Ukrainian conflict precisely as a means of deterring the US and its allies from becoming directly involved. Nevertheless, repeated public reminders from Putin and other officials about Russia’s nuclear status have so far not prevented a growing escalation of NATO’s participation. As a result, it has become clear that nuclear deterrence, on which many in Moscow have relied as a credible means of securing the country’s vital interests, has proven to be a much more limited tool than they expected. In fact, the US has now set itself the task – unthinkable during the Cold War – of trying to defeat another nuclear superpower in a strategically important region, without resorting to atomic weapons, but instead by arming and controlling a third country.

The Americans are proceeding cautiously, testing Moscow’s responses and consistently pushing the boundaries of what is possible in terms of arms supplied to Kiev, as well as the choice of targets for them. From starting with anti-tank ‘Javelins,’ to eventually cajoling allies to send actual tanks, the US is now apparently pondering transferring F-16 fighter jets and long-range missiles. It is likely that this US strategy is based on the belief that the Russian leadership would not dare use nuclear weapons in the current conflict, and that its references to the nuclear arsenal at its disposal are nothing more than a bluff. The Americans have even been calm – at least outwardly about the deployment of Russian non-strategic nuclear weapons in Belarus. Such “fearlessness” is a direct result of the geopolitical changes of the last three decades and the change of generations in power in the US and the West in general.

The fear of the atomic bomb, present in the second half of the twentieth century, has disappeared. Nuclear weapons have been taken out of the equation. The practical conclusion is clear: there is no need to be afraid of such a Russian response. This is an extremely dangerous misconception. The trajectory of the Ukrainian war points to an escalation of the conflict both horizontally (by expanding the theater of military action) and vertically (by increasing the power of the weapons used and the intensity of their use). It must be soberly acknowledged that this momentum is heading towards a direct armed confrontation between Russia and NATO. If the accumulated inertia is not stopped, such a clash will take place, and in this case the war, having spread to Western Europe, will almost inevitably become nuclear. And after some time, a nuclear war in Europe will most likely lead to an exchange of blows between Russia and the US.

The Americans and their allies are truly playing Russian roulette. Yes, so far the Russian response to the bombing of Nord Stream, the drone attack on the strategic Engels airbase, the entry of Western-armed saboteurs into the Belgorod region and many other actions by the Washington-backed and controlled side has been relatively restrained. As Putin recently made clear, there are good reasons for this restraint. Russia, the president said, is capable of destroying any building in Kiev, but will not stoop to the methods of terror used by the enemy. But Putin added that Russia was considering various options for destroying Western warplanes if they are based in NATO countries and directly take part in the war in Ukraine.

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Trying to think of another “leader” who wanted to ban his mother tongue.

Zelensky Bans Russian Books (RT)

President Vladimir Zelensky announced on Thursday that he had a signed a law making it illegal to import and distribute Russian and Belarusian publishing products in Ukraine. However, some Ukrainian officials have pointed out that the step could hinder Kiev’s plans to join the EU. The move comes after Ukrainian citizens registered an online petition on the official presidential website asking for the ban back in May. The petition reached the 25,000-vote threshold required for it to be formally considered by the head of state. The author of the petition noted that the Ukrainian parliament had already approved the law on June 19, 2022, but that Zelensky had never signed the bill. As a result, Russian books continued to be sold in Ukraine, which undermines “the information security of the state and the economic foundations of Ukrainian book publishing,” according to the petition.

“I consider the law to be correct,” Zelensky stated in a Telegram post announcing that he had finally signed the legislation. He noted, however, that the text of the legislation had been sent to EU institutions for an “additional assessment” of whether it could breach Kiev’s obligations to protect minority rights, particularly linguistic ones, in the context of Ukraine’s application for EU membership. In a written response to the petition last month, Zelensky explained that there had been a “number of reservations” that prevented the law from being adopted.

The president stated that Ukraine’s Ministry of Justice had proposed applying the right of veto to the bill, arguing that completely banning the import and distribution of Russian publications would contradict several articles of Ukraine’s constitution. Additionally, Zelensky said that despite agreeing with the nature of the law, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry had also advised vetoing the bill. The ministry had warned that its current version “does not meet the norms and standards of the EU in the field of human rights, including freedom of opinion, protection of the rights of national minorities, prohibition of discrimination on the basis of language, and therefore may complicate the process of negotiations on Ukraine’s accession to the European Union.”

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“Khren Im”

On Horseradish & Nuclear War (Scott Ritter)

Russian President Vladimir Putin is known for a lot of things — his “in your face” speeches, his marathon unscripted press conferences and his stoic impassiveness in the face of adversity come to mind. One thing that doesn’t jump out at the average observer is his earthy sense of humor. Long-time Putin watchers know that the Russian leader on occasion spices up his formal presentations with off-color quips which, unless one is well versed in colloquial Russian of the back-alley variety, can get missed by the casual listener. During the June 16 discussion period of the plenary session of the 2023 St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, the Russian leader was asked about his views on the potential use of nuclear weapons in the context of the ongoing Ukrainian conflict. “This use of nuclear weapons is certainly theoretically possible,” Putin bluntly answered.

“For Russia, this is possible if a threat is created to our territorial integrity, independence and sovereignty, the existence of the Russian state. Nuclear weapons are created in order to ensure our security in the broadest sense of the word and the existence of the Russian state.” Putin’s answer reflected long-standing Russian nuclear doctrine, which postulates the use of nuclear weapons in the case of an existential threat, nuclear or otherwise, to the survival of Russia. Putin then sought to put the audience at ease. “But we, firstly, do not have such a need,” Putin noted, “and secondly, the very factor of reasoning on this topic already lowers the possibility of lowering the threshold for the use of weapons. This is the first part.” What came next was classic Putin. “The second is that we have more such weapons [i.e., tactical nuclear weapons] than the NATO countries. They know about it and all the time they persuade us to start talks on reductions.”

Putin paused, before shrugging and, with a half-smile, saying “Khren Im”. Khren Im is a Russian slang term derived from the word “horseradish” (khren), thus a literal translation of the phrase used by Putin would be “horseradish them.” But khren closely resembles a more salty term used to describe male genitalia, and when used in this manner, khren Im is understood to mean “F*ck them.” “F*ck them, you know?” Putin said, to the obvious mirth of the audience. “As our people say. Because, in the clumsy terms of economics, this is our competitive advantage.”

The “them” in the horseradish reference made by the Russian president is the United States. Two weeks prior to Putin’s man-in-the-street reaction, on June 2, U.S. President Joe Biden’s national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, addressed a conference hosted by the Arms Control Association, in Washington, D.C. The topic, not surprisingly, was the administration’s approach to U.S.-Russian arms control.

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Another way to poke the bear.

New Catastrophe Looms In Kosovo As West ‘Toys’ With International Law (TASS)

The West is toying with international law in an attempt to create alternative ways to resolve the Kosovo problem, and this may lead the region down a path to calamity, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said during a briefing Wednesday. The diplomat underscored that the US and the EU continue to turn a blind eye towards Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti’s subversive actions and deliberately bring the settlement to a deadlock in order to “force the Serbs to surrender their vital interests.”


“Since April 2013, Pritstina has been shirking its commitments to Serb municipalities in Kosovo. Instead of pressing the Kosovars, US mediators are laying the groundwork to radically decrease the community’s authority, and, of course, its replacement with some mechanism on protection of language rights, supporting Kurti’s claim about, as he put it, the non-territorial nature of this structure,” she noted. “Amid these circumstances, there is a growing risk that the West will toy with international law in an aim to create alternative options for resolution of the Kosovo problem, taking the region to a new catastrophe, yet another one.” The diplomat noted that there is a reliable foundation for settling the situation, which remains fully in effect. “That being the UN Security Council Resolution 1244 – the basis for negotiations between Belgrade and Pristina, for any mediation efforts of the international community – the foundation is the same,” she added.

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Mr. Banker should know?!

Global Financial System Exhausted, Not Up to New Challenges – Macron (Sp.)

The existing global financial system is outdated and does not meet the new challenges, while the new system must be adopted and aligned with the world’s goals, French President Emmanuel Macron said on Thursday.
“Our world is undergoing ever greater upheaval… We have a financial system which is the product of a previous consensus, which has shown its effectiveness, and bailed us out in past decades, but is probably not evolving fast enough. It is no longer adapted, and needs to be realigned with our goals,” Macron said at the opening of a New Global Financial Pact summit in Paris, which was streamed on the official website of the event.

Macron noted that no country had to choose whether to fight poverty or protect the planet and each country should be free to choose its own way, hence the new financial pact had to respect the sovereignty of the countries of the South much more. “We will take a major step, as we will start by establishing a new consensus. The fight against poverty, the decarbonization of our economy in order to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, and the protection of biodiversity, are closely intertwined. We therefore need to agree together on the best means to address these challenges in the poor and emerging countries of the developing world, when it comes to the amount of investment, to comprehensive reform of infrastructure like the World Bank, the IMF, and public and private funds, and how to set a new process in motion,” Macron said.

Macron also said that the private sector had a big role to play, but it needed to receive credible guarantees. The president added that the summit should result in concrete solutions that would change the lives of countries struggling with climate challenges and suggested setting up a follow-up mechanism. The summit in Paris, which runs from June 22-23, aims to establish new agreements between the countries of the Global North and the Global South and to combat climate change and the global crisis.

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Too late.

Biden Sends Sullivan, Nuland To Turn BRICS War Skeptics Against Russia (ZH)

At a moment President Zelensky has confessed that Ukraine’s counteroffensive which was launched this month has been “slower than desired”, President Biden’s national security advisor Jake Sullivan is mounting a big push to convince “skeptics” from developing nations to become more firmly supportive of Kiev’s war effort. “Joe Biden’s top national security aide will fly to Denmark this weekend at the behest of Kyiv’s government for an unannounced meeting with representatives of several developing countries that have not condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine,” Financial Times has reported. A planned Copenhagen meeting is expected to include large but ‘neutral’ countries like Brazil, India, and South Africa – the latter which has of late been accused of actively supporting Moscow.

Sullivan’s initiative came at the request of the Ukrainian government, also as Russia’s economy has been successfully weathering the storm of US/EU-led sanctions, in particular upping its energy exports to BRICS countries. As for the as yet unannounced list of likely attendees in Denmark, FT details based on its sources: “Officials from Turkey and possibly China could also attend. One of the people familiar with the plans said that, following the Ukrainian request, Washington has been encouraging China, India, Brazil, Turkey and South Africa to attend. Sullivan will travel with Victoria Nuland, the number-three official at the US state department. A senior EU official will also participate.” BRICS countries have by and large been so quiet about the Russian invasion that they’ve even been accused of outright aiding and abetting Moscow’s offensive.

When discussing Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s three-day visit to Washington this week, Sullivan told reporters, “We think this actually sends a message to the coalition and Ukraine that we’re working to advocate on their behalf with a broader range of countries than just those that show up around the table either in Nato…or at the G7.” It remains that the major economies of India, Brazil, China and South Africa have persisted in their refusal to cooperate with Western sanctions on Russia. In Beijing’s case, it has actually directed more criticism at both NATO and the United States for “arrogance” and “imperialism”.

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Every day, there are new developments. Step by step. And unstoppable.

The Greater Eurasia Project: Building Bridges, Breaking Barriers (Pepe Escobar)

On July 4, at a New Delhi summit, Iran will finally become a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). That will be one of the key decisions of the summit, held via video-conference, along with the signing of a memorandum on the path by Belarus to also become a member state. In parallel, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexei Overchuk has confirmed that Iran and the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) should sign a free trade agreement (FTA) by the end of 2023. The FTA will expand an interim deal that already lowers customs duties on hundreds of categories of goods. Russia and Iran – two key poles of Eurasia integration – have been getting closer and closer geoeconomically since the west’s sanctions tsunami that followed Russia’s February 2022 Special Military Operation (SMO) in Ukraine.

The EAEU – as much as the SCO and BRICS – is on a roll: FTAs are expected to be clinched, from middle to long term, with Egypt, India, Indonesia, and the UAE. Overchuck admits negotiations may be “very difficult” and “take years,” considering “the interests of all five EAEU member states, their businesses, and their consumers.” Yet despite the obvious complexities, this high-speed rail geoeconomic train has already left the station. In a parallel track, the members of the Asian Clearing Union (ACU), during a recent summit in Iran, decided to launch a new cross-border financial messaging system this month as a rival to the western-centric SWIFT. The ACU comprises the Central Banks of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and Iran: a healthy mix of West Asia, Southeast Asia, and South Asia.

It was the Central Bank of Iran – still under harsh sanctions – that developed the new bank messaging system, so new it’s not yet known by its own acronym. Crucially, the Governor of Russia’s Central Bank took part in the ACU summit as an observer, along with officials from Belarus, which applied for ACU membership two weeks ago. Iranian Central Bank Governor Mohammad Reza Farzin confirmed not only the interest of potential members to join the ACU, but also the drive to set up a basket of currencies for payment of bilateral trade deals. Call it a de-dollarization fast track. As Iran’s first Vice President, Mohammad Mokhber summed it up: “De-dollarization is not a voluntary choice by countries anymore; it is an inevitable response to the weaponization of the dollar.”

Iran is now at the heart of all things multipolar. The recent discovery of a massive lithium field holding roughly 10 percent of the world’s reserves, coupled with the quite possible admission of Iran into the expanded BRICS – or BRICS+ – as early as this year, has bolstered scenarios of an upcoming BRICS currency backed by commodities: gold, oil, gas and – inevitably – lithium. All this frantic Global South-led activity stands in sharp contrast to the sputtering deceleration of the Empire of Sanctions. The Global South has had enough of the US sanctioning and banning whoever, whatever, and whenever they like, in defense of a hazy, arbitrary “rules-based international order.”

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“..the agencies will do everything they can to help Biden or whoever replaces him from the Democratic Party but they will be a lot more careful about how they do it..”

CIA Vet Warns US Intel ‘Will Do Everything’ to Help Dems in 2024 Race (Sp.)

Former Special Counsel John Durham offered his first public testimony before the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday regarding the details of his report into the FBI’s handling of allegations of collusion between ex-President Donald Trump and Russia. The day before, Durham testified behind closed doors to the US House Intelligence Committee. While it is not completely clear whether the Federal Bureau of Investigation knew from the outset that dug-up “information on Trump” had been paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign in 2016, there is “no excuse for their having learned that and, nevertheless, proceeded with the investigation,” former CIA station chief Philip Giraldi told Sputnik. “There might have been personal malice involved in going after Trump, but that has not been clearly demonstrated,” the Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest added, referencing the FBI’s investigation into the alleged Trump-Russia “collusion”.

Former Special Counsel John Durham paid his second visit to Capitol Hill on Wednesday to face the House Judiciary Committee over the details of his May report, released after almost a four-year-long investigation into the origins of the FBI’s Trump-Russia investigation codenamed, Crossfire Hurricane. Durham had found that the agency had been “seriously deficient,” relying on “raw, unanalyzed, and uncorroborated intelligence,” when probing the 2016 Donald Trump campaign’s alleged ties to “Russia.” “One has to assume that the Bureau felt it had a great deal invested in maintaining Democratic Party control of the presidency and that there were concerns that Trump would upset the arrangements made under [Barack] Obama,” Giraldi said.

The Durham report had also exposed the Democratic establishment’s anti-Trump narrative, and the role of Hillary Clinton’s campaign in spawning and then pushing the Trump-Russia collusion hoax. During his probe, the special counsel charged and convicted FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith, who admitted to doctoring an email to state that Trump aide Carter Page had never been a CIA asset (which was not true) in order to push ahead with surveilling the former Trump campaign adviser. Durham also brought charges against Hillary Clinton’s campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann and Brookings Institution scholar Igor Danchenko for lying to the FBI. Danchenko has served as the main ‘subsource’ for ex-MI6 agent Christopher Steele, the author of the now infamous Steele dossier. It had been funded by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) through the law firm Perkins Coie, which Marc Elias and Michael Sussmann worked for at the time.

[..] Ahead of John Durham’s testimony on June 21, Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) underscored in his opening statement that the hearing was tasked to provide more “detail and add more color” to the findings of the May report. “Seven years of attacking Trump is scary enough… What’s more frightening is that any one of us could be next,” Jordan emphasized. A number of Republicans echoed John Durham’s calls for reforming the FBI, underscoring that the agency, had become “politicized” and “weaponized”, and had carried out a “politically motivated” investigation of Donald Trump. Looking ahead at the next election cycle, where both Biden and Trump are gearing up to vie for another Oval Office stint, Philip Giraldi concluded: “For 2024, I expect that the agencies will do everything they can to help Biden or whoever replaces him from the Democratic Party but they will be a lot more careful about how they do it than they were in 2020.”

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I see the word bombshell too much.

New Bombshell Evidence Against Bidens, DOJ, AG Garland (ZH)

Several bombshells dropped by two IRS whistleblowers on Thursday reveal, among other things, that Joe Biden’s DOJ buried evidence of Hunter Biden’s tax crimes – and stopped US Attorney David Weiss from bringing charges against Hunter in two different jurisdictions last year. According to Rep. Jason Smith (R-MO), Weiss sought to be appointed as a special counsel in the case last year but was denied as well. What’s more, the IRS sought felony charges against Hunter, send their recommendations to the Biden DOJ, and they ‘came out as two misdemeanors,’ Byron York tweets. According to the whistleblowers, one of whom is Gary Shipley – who came forward weeks ago to reveal his identity, the IRS was notified of potential evidence “in the guest house of former Vice President Biden,” but were rebuffed by US Attorney Lesley Wolf, who said there was “no way,” as search warrant “would ever get approved.”

“Whistleblowers describe how the Biden Justice Department intervened and overstepped in a campaign to protect the son of Joe Biden by delaying, divulging, and denying an ongoing investigation into Hunter Biden’s alleged tax crimes,” said Smith in a statement. “The testimony shows tactics used by the Justice Department to delay the investigation long enough to reach the statute of limitations, evidence they divulged sensitive actions by the investigative team to Biden’s attorneys, and denied requests by the U.S. Attorney to bring charges against Biden.” During seven hours of testimony before the Ways and Means Committee, Shipley and the other whistleblower’s testimony implicates both AG Merrick Garland and IRS Commissioner Daniel Werfel for lying to Congress about political interference in the Biden probe.

“Whistleblower One’s story was corroborated by Whistleblower Two,” said Rep. Kevin Hern (R-OK). “One individual came forward and laid out the full case of what’s going on. The second individual, through his attorney, asked Ways and Means to contact him and ask for testimony. So we didn’t seek these, they sought us,” added Rep. Greg Murphy (R-NC).

As Techno Fog notes via The Reactionary; “With the rejection from the DC US Attorney, the team sought the approval to bring tax charges for years 2016-2019 in the Central District of California. Shapley concluded that “the Central District of California declined to allow charges to be brought there.” The rejection to bring charges in DC and California stands in stark contrast to the testimony of Attorney General Garland, who in March of 2023 stated that US Attorney Weiss had the full authority to “bring cases in other jurisdictions.” Garland also said that he personally would ensure that Weiss could “carry out his investigation and that he [would] be able to run it.” Both those statements now appear to be false. (Your humble author thinks the Republicans knew Garland was making misrepresentations at the time.)”

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“..you have to be impressed with the fact that they just continue to shove this nonsense in our face knowing that they could get away with it.”

US Justice is Blind – Unless Your Name is Hunter Biden (Tweedie)

US President Joe Biden’s son was brazenly let off scot-free in a “sweetheart deal,” say two media commentators. Hunter Biden had been under investigation by the FBI for soliciting millions in bribes from foreign businesspeople in return for influence over the then-vice president. That includes an alleged $5 million from Mykola Zlochevsky, co-owner of Ukrainian energy firm Burisma Holdings which employed Hunter as a company director and which was investigated for corruption by Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin until Joe Biden pressured Kiev to sack him. Hunter is also suspected of owning a handgun unlawfully, which reportedly ended up being thrown in a dumpster. Furthermore, a trove of photos on his abandoned “Laptop from Hell” appeared to show him using crack cocaine and sleeping with underage prostitutes.

But on Tuesday, it was reported that he had struck a deal with prosecutors — pending approval by a federal judge — to plead guilty to tax evasion and illegal possession of a firearm in return for avoiding jail time. Former US diplomat Jim Jatras told Sputnik that Hunter Biden’s plea bargain was a “sweetheart deal.” “I don’t know how a plea on two charges automatically extends to, say ‘Oh, yeah, and all that other stuff. We’re going to give you a guarantee that there will be no charges,'” he said. The foreign policy expert said that was “an outrageous miscarriage of justice.” “I know the rich and powerful and the politically well-connected and treated differently from everybody else, but this is really just unprecedented,” Jatras stressed. The pundit said the plea bargain deal would play into the hands of the Republican Party.

“It’s what Republicans love best. They could win and jump up and down and scream in outrage without actually having to do anything,” Jatras said. “It completely absolves them of any responsibility to actually see that justice is done.” Journalist Jim Hoft told Sputnik that he was not surprised that the president’s wayward son got off scot-free. “After what we’ve seen the past few years, not really,” he said. “But it is quite galling. And you have to be impressed with the fact that they just continue to shove this nonsense in our face knowing that they could get away with it.” The editor said Hunter Biden was “one of the most crooked people in the country.” “And he gets a pass and a little slap on the wrist, if that,” Hoft observed. “It’s really it’s stunning what’s happening to our country. We’re all witnessing it.”

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“Peter Hotez – who he says will “never debate Bobby Kennedy Jr., but it doesn’t matter. Kennedy has already won.”

Tucker Calls Out ‘Media Hysteria Typhoon’ Over RFK Jr. (ZH)

In his latest episode, Tucker Carlson discussed the media’s absolute hatred for Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who was immediately attacked by the press upon his announcement that he would run against President Joe Biden in 2024. “CBS News viewers likely were appalled in its coverage of Kennedy’s announcement. CBS denounced the candidate’s views as ‘misleading’ and ‘dangerous,'” noted Carlson, adding “The LA Times called him a threat to democracy.” “At the offices of National Public Radio in Washington, a full-blown category-5 hysteria typhoon broke out. NPR devoted an entire segment to savaging Kennedy – not just as a candidate, but as a human being,” Carlson continued. “NPR described him as someone who, for his own perverse reasons, has made “debunked and false and misleading claims that undermine trust in vaccines.

And who, in his spare time, provides moral support to crazed extremists who “rally under the banner of what they call liberty, or freedom.”” “People Magazine didn’t even bother to report a single word of anything Kennedy said!” Carlson exclaimed, “and instead wrote an entire story about his relatives hate him.” “Kennedy Jr. faced censorship on Instagram and YouTube for expressing his views,” he continued, adding that RFK Jr. raised questions about “the rise in allergies, asthma, autism, and other conditions related to vaccines,” while “the media and medical establishment vilified Kennedy Jr. for his views, calling him a lunatic, Nazi, and extremist supporter.”


Carlson then goes into a defense of Kennedy’s right to raise questions over vaccines, and the response one gets for doing so. “Bobby Kennedy won’t stop asking, and that’s why they hate him,” Carlson said. Carlson then went after debate-dodging doctor, Peter Hotez – who he says will “never debate Bobby Kennedy Jr., but it doesn’t matter. Kennedy has already won.” “Hotez attacked Kennedy Jr. and called for vaccine mandates, accusing those who disagree of being white nationalists and Russian agents,” said Carlson, who then noted how Hotez chickened out of a debate with RFK Jr.

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Wow art

 

 


This breathtaking photo by Jessica Blacklow shows a dozen dolphins spotted enjoying a remarkable synchronised surf off the coast of Sydney

 

 

Evil

 

 

Cobra moth
https://twitter.com/i/status/1671853300835143681

 

 

Soggy bottom

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 


John Atkinson Grimshaw Battersea Bridge 1885

 

Russian Army Gets Enough Recruits To Form Regiment Per Day – Shoigu (RT)
Ukraine Expands General Mobilization (RT)
‘No Way to Recruit People’: GOP Seeks to Codify Pentagon Drag Show Ban (Sp.)
Putin Says Western Countries Seem to Be Ready to Fight to Last Ukrainian (Sp.)
NATO Trainers Knowingly Sent Ukrainian Troops To Their Deaths (Scott Ritter)
Demilitarization, Denazification: A Sanitary Zone For Ukraine (Helmer)
US/NATO Are Playing ‘Russian Roulette’. Do They Want A Nuclear War? (Trenin)
Zelensky Bans Russian Books (RT)
On Horseradish & Nuclear War (Scott Ritter)
New Catastrophe Looms In Kosovo As West ‘Toys’ With International Law (TASS)
Global Financial System Exhausted, Not Up to New Challenges – Macron (Sp.)
Biden Sends Sullivan, Nuland To Turn BRICS War Skeptics Against Russia (ZH)
The Greater Eurasia Project: Building Bridges, Breaking Barriers (Pepe Escobar)
CIA Vet Warns US Intel ‘Will Do Everything’ to Help Dems in 2024 Race (Sp.)
New Bombshell Evidence Against Bidens, DOJ, AG Garland (ZH)
US Justice is Blind – Unless Your Name is Hunter Biden (Tweedie)
Tucker Calls Out ‘Media Hysteria Typhoon’ Over RFK Jr. (ZH)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RFK Who we are

 

 

 

 

While Modi is in Washington, Obama, visiting Athens, tells Modi what to do at home.

Obama

 

 

The submersible imploded on Sunday, killing all on board. We were not allowed to know until now.

 

 

 

 

“On average, 1,336 people enter service under a contract with the Russian Armed Forces per 24 hours..”

Russian Army Gets Enough Recruits To Form Regiment Per Day – Shoigu (RT)

The Russian Army is recruiting enough new personnel to complete the formation of its reserve force, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said on Thursday. Enough applicants are signing formal contracts with the ministry to form a new regiment every day, he added. A total of 114,000 people have joined the Russian Armed Forces as contract servicemen to date, Shoigu told President Vladimir Putin at a Russian National Security Council session. An additional 52,000 people have joined the military ranks as volunteers, he said. “On average, 1,336 people enter service under a contract with the Russian Armed Forces per 24 hours,” Shoigu said, adding that “we de facto get a [new] regiment every day.” Russia is now actively forming a reserve force that will include a new corps, a field army and five new regiments for the existing field armies, the defense minister said.

A field army in Russia includes several army corps and accounts for more than 40,000 servicemen on average. A Russian army corps has an established strength of between 20,000 and 40,000 servicemen and includes several brigades and regiments depending on its composition. “We are about to finish the formation of a reserve army by late June,” the minister said, adding that almost 3,800 military equipment pieces have already been supplied to the troops and will be used to outfit the newly formed units. According to Shoigu, the volunteers are “eager to join the fight” on the frontlines, where the Russian troops are currently repelling a Ukrainian offensive, which was launched earlier in June. The minister said that Moscow has no plans to send them into the fray right now. “There is no urgent need for that,”he said, adding that the fresh recruits should “undergo serious training first and that is what they do.” He still praised the “highest motivation” of the Russian troops.

In mid-June, Putin told military correspondents and bloggers that Russia sees no need for another military draft campaign right now. At that time, he also said that over 150,000 people had signed a contract with the Russian Defense Ministry since January. Shoigu’s report comes as Ukrainian officials in some regions take drastic steps to ensure the inflow of recruits to the Ukrainian army. Kiev declared general mobilization back in February 2022, when Russia launched its military campaign in Ukraine. This week, several Ukrainian media outlets reported that authorities in western Ivano-Frankovsk Region barred local healthcare providers from carrying out planned hospital treatments of any patients eligible for conscription without prior coordination with the local enlistment office. Putin has also stated that Kiev should not be able to replenish its manpower indefinitely even with the West’s military aid. “It seems Ukraine’s Western allies are indeed prepared to wage the war to the last Ukrainian,” according to the president.

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What a difference. It’s now everyone. Want to become a doctor? Too bad.

Ukraine Expands General Mobilization (RT)

Residents of the Obolonsky district in the Ukrainian capital who are eligible for mobilization must report to the military recruitment offices within ten days, even if they do not receive a personal notice, the local draft commissariat said on Thursday. The document, signed by commissar Alexey Privala, was posted on social media, as well as reprinted by the Ukrainian newspaper Strana. Responding to the outlet’s inquiry, Privala’s office claimed the order was nothing new and that such notices were being posted regularly. What is a precedent in the district, however, is the blanket call-up of all draftees. The western Ukrainian city of Ivano-Frankovsk has already enacted the same measure. Their orders, dated June 13, also refer to the mobilization of vehicles and forbid residents from moving without the explicit permission of the draft commissariat.

The Ivano-Frankovsk notice set a ten-day deadline for all men subject to the draft notice to report for service. The Obolonsky district commissariat has also referred to the same ten-day deadline. Its orders apply not only to the men registered in the district, but even those residing there temporarily, according to Strana. Ukraine’s Chernigov Region reported on Wednesday that it was struggling to meet its mobilization quota. More than 20,000 people have not reported following their summons, regional draft commissar Oleg Goncharuk has admitted. The expanded mobilization measures come as the long-heralded “counteroffensive” on the Zaporozhye front fails to dislodge Russian forces after more than two weeks of fighting.

The attack was “not meeting expectations on any front,”Western officials told CNN on Thursday, while President Vladimir Zelensky acknowledged on Wednesday that progress had been “slower than desired.” According to Russian officials, Ukraine has suffered up to 13,000 casualties since June 4, and is in the process of regrouping its brigades to try again. National Security Council Secretary Nikolay Patrushev and Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu briefed President Vladimir Putin on Thursday that many Western-supplied vehicles were among the 246 tanks, 152 infantry fighting vehicles, and 443 armored vehicles Ukraine lost during the attempted attacks.

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Should Ukraine follow US example in mobilization? Zelensky would be an excellent drag queen.

‘No Way to Recruit People’: GOP Seeks to Codify Pentagon Drag Show Ban (Sp.)

After a drag show advertised as a “family-friendly” event was canceled at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada in early June, at the start of Pride Month, the Defense Department issued a statement to say that such events were “not a suitable use” of resources. After a de-facto Pentagon ban on drag shows in the military went into effect at the start of June, Republicans at the US House Armed Services Committee have urged seeing this codified in law. An amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) was put forward by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) to bar funding for such performances. “I think it’s time for us to do something to make our voice known that we will not let this happen in the US military – woke ideology and the drag queen shows have no place in our military, zero, bupkis. That is not the way to recruit people,” Rep. Mark Alford (R-Mo.) said about the provision, which was passed 33-26.

The NDAA, the annual defense policy bill, passed the House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday night after a session that considered over 800 amendments. The Committee also passed a provision put forward by Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) to suspend a contentious initiative called the Navy Digital Ambassador Program. After the Navy had opted to select sailor Joshua Kelley, a TikTok drag queen known as Harpy Daniels, to reach out to potential recruits on social media, it had triggered a flurry of criticism. The current move by the House Armed Services Committee comes as Matt Gaetz wrote to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley, and “demanded answers” on “why these drag shows are still occurring” despite the two officials having testified in March that the Department of Defense did not endorse them.

Both Austin and Milley had claimed that they were not aware of such performances on military bases. According to US reports, drag shows have been hosted at Nellis Air Force Base both in 2021 and 2022. The event cancelled by the Pentagon at the military base in Nevada had been advertised ahead of the scheduled performance as a “family-friendly” one, involving three artists, including a former contestant on “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” “As Secretary Austin has said, the DoD will not host drag events at US military installations or facilities. Hosting these types of events in federally funded facilities is not a suitable use of DoD resources,” Sabrina Singh, deputy press secretary for the department, had stated in early June.

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“[Military] equipment, of course, can be supplied additionally. But the mobilization reserve is not unlimited..”

Putin Says Western Countries Seem to Be Ready to Fight to Last Ukrainian (Sp.)

Ukrainian troops launched a large-scale offensive in five sectors of the South Donetsk direction on June 4 but failed to achieve their goals, according to the Russian Defense Ministry. It looks like Western countries are ready to fight until the last Ukrainian, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday. “[Military] equipment, of course, can be supplied additionally. But the mobilization reserve is not unlimited. And it seems that Ukraine’s Western allies really decided to fight Russia to the last Ukrainian,” Putin said at a meeting of the Security Council. Kiev has already lost over 13,000 people during its counteroffensive, Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev said. “As for the personnel … it [Kiev’s loss] is more than 13,000 [persons],” Patrushev said at a meeting with members of the Russian Security Council held by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Moreover, Russian forces have already destroyed 246 Ukrainian tanks, including 13 of the Western type, as well as 42 multiple launch rocket systems, two anti-aircraft missile systems, 10 tactical fighters, four helicopters, 264 unmanned aerial vehicles and 424 units of motor vehicles, which Kiev has used during its counteroffensive, Patrushev added. The figures are based on the generalized data for the period from June 4-21, provided by various departments, the Russian official noted. Ukrainian troops have slowed down their activity after 16 days of hostilities and are regrouping, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said. “After 16 days of active hostilities, having suffered significant losses, [the enemy] is regrouping and re-equipping, gathering parts of battalions at the moment,” Shoigu said during a meeting of the Russian Security Council.

The Russian armed forces will complete the creation of a reserve army by the end of June and of an army corps in the near future, with the formations scheduled to receive over 3,700 pieces of equipment, Sergei Shoigu added. “We are forming reserves as part of the army corps, the army, plus five regiments of the 20th tank army. Everything is going according to plan. In fact, we will complete the formation of the reserve army by the end of June and finalize the formation of the army corps there soon,” Shoigu said at a meeting with permanent members of the Russian Security Council. As for now, these five regiments, both in terms of personnel and equipment, are already formed by 60%, the Russian defense chief added.

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This is what “cannon fodder” means.

NATO Trainers Knowingly Sent Ukrainian Troops To Their Deaths (Scott Ritter)

Ukraine sent one of its best brigades into combat earlier this month as part of its long-awaited counteroffensive aimed at retaking areas controlled by Russian forces. Leading the charge near the town of Orekhov, in Zaporozhye Region, was the 47th Mechanized Brigade, armed with NATO equipment and – most importantly – employing it using the US-led bloc’s combined arms doctrine and tactics. Prior to the operation, this brigade spent months at a base in Germany learning “Western know-how” in combined-arms warfare. Helping them prepare for the fighting to come was KORA, the German-made NATO computer simulation system, designed to allow officers and non-commissioned officers to closely replicate battlefield conditions and, in doing so, better develop ideal courses of action against a designated enemy – in this case, Russia.


If there was ever an example of how a purpose-built Ukrainian NATO proxy force would perform against a Russian enemy, the 47th Brigade was the ideal case study. However, within days of initiating its attack, the group was close to literally decimated, with more than 10% of the over 100 US-made M-2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles destroyed or abandoned on the field of battle, and hundreds of the brigade’s 2,000-strong complement dead or wounded. German-made Leopard 2 tanks and mine-clearing vehicles joined the Bradleys as wrecks in the fields west of Orekhov, having failed to breach the first line of Russian defenses. The reasons for this defeat can be boiled down to the role played by KORA in creating a false sense of confidence on the part of the officers and men of the 47th Brigade. Unfortunately, as the Ukrainians and their NATO masters found out, what works in a computer simulation does not automatically equate to battlefield success.

[..] One of the things I’m most proud of in my military career is the fact that the Marine assault breaching operations done during Desert Storm unfolded almost exactly as my team and I had predicted in the JANUS simulation. After the war, General Caulfield credited my team and I with playing a major role in designing the successful Marine attack and, in the process, saving hundreds of Marine lives. We achieved this result by adhering to basic principles of professionalism and integrity, refusing to cut corners for the sake of expediency and being realistic about the amount of military combat power that would be needed to be applied over time to achieve the desired result.


If only the NATO trainers, who knowingly sent the men of the Ukrainian 47th Mechanized Brigade and scores of other Ukrainian brigades to their deaths, adhered to such standards. Instead, they sent those troops in a futile attempt to breach defenses that were impossible to overcome, given the disparity in training and force composition between the Ukrainian and Russian forces. Had they been diligent, there would be far fewer Ukrainian widows and orphaned children mourning the loss of their husbands and fathers. This, more than anything, is the primary lesson to be derived from the Ballad of KORA and JANUS – neither NATO nor the United States cares about the lives of the Ukrainians they have undertaken to train in the horrific art of war.

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”..that leaves nothing of the Ukraine except the territory which the Poles and Hungarians might not be bold enough to take.”

Demilitarization, Denazification: A Sanitary Zone For Ukraine (Helmer)

What follows is the first detailed discussion in the open in Moscow of how the map of this territory should be drawn when the Ukrainian offensive reaches its end, and the Russian advance begins. Left out of mention is who in Moscow will be drawing the new map. This is because Putin has annonced he is delegating to the General Staff. “Russia’s military leadership,” he said on June 9, “is realistic in its assessments of the situation and will proceed from these realities as it continues to plan up our actions in the short term.” Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov had already said the same a year ago. “Now the geography is different,” he concluded an interview in Moscow on July 20, 2022. “Take the HIMARS. [Ukrainian] Defence Minister Alexei Reznikov boasts that they have already received 300-kilometre ammunition.

This means our geographic objectives will move even further from the current line. We cannot allow the part of Ukraine that Vladimir Zelensky, or whoever replaces him, will control to have weapons that pose a direct threat to our territory or to the republics that have declared their independence and want to determine their own future.” “[Question:] How can this be arranged, technically? This is our territory. Then there are the republics that will accede to us. In fact they already have – the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions. … Further west, there is the territory controlled by Vladimir Zelensky. They have a common border. So either there should be a 300 kilometre buffer zone or something between them, or we need to march all the way to Lvov inclusive.” “[Lavrov:] There is a solution to this problem. The military know this.”

“Comrade servicemen,” Lavrov added last week on a visit to the 201st Russian Military Base in Tajikistan, “they are getting ready, in earnest, to supply the F-16 jets. Some say they will make two squadrons available, others say eight. They are gearing up to continue the escalation of the war against us. There’s an ongoing debate about where these planes will take off from. Our armed forces and the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces are well aware of ongoing developments and report to the Supreme Commander-in-Chief. We must keep in mind that one version of the F-16 can carry nuclear weapons. If they do not understand this, they are worthless military strategists and planners.” The General Staff have no reason to speak publicly on this point.

Privately, a source in a position to know says: “the General Staff are not satisfied with the Dnieper [line of defence]. It will run from a small town on the border with Belarus to Transnistria. They will solve that problem as well. But mainly, Belarus has to be protected from the south. And most importantly, that leaves nothing of the Ukraine except the territory which the Poles and Hungarians might not be bold enough to take.”

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“The fear of the atomic bomb, present in the second half of the twentieth century, has disappeared. Nuclear weapons have been taken out of the equation.”

US/NATO Are Playing ‘Russian Roulette’. Do They Want A Nuclear War? (Trenin)

In principle, nuclear weapons have been “on the table” for Russia from the very beginning of the Ukrainian conflict precisely as a means of deterring the US and its allies from becoming directly involved. Nevertheless, repeated public reminders from Putin and other officials about Russia’s nuclear status have so far not prevented a growing escalation of NATO’s participation. As a result, it has become clear that nuclear deterrence, on which many in Moscow have relied as a credible means of securing the country’s vital interests, has proven to be a much more limited tool than they expected. In fact, the US has now set itself the task – unthinkable during the Cold War – of trying to defeat another nuclear superpower in a strategically important region, without resorting to atomic weapons, but instead by arming and controlling a third country.

The Americans are proceeding cautiously, testing Moscow’s responses and consistently pushing the boundaries of what is possible in terms of arms supplied to Kiev, as well as the choice of targets for them. From starting with anti-tank ‘Javelins,’ to eventually cajoling allies to send actual tanks, the US is now apparently pondering transferring F-16 fighter jets and long-range missiles. It is likely that this US strategy is based on the belief that the Russian leadership would not dare use nuclear weapons in the current conflict, and that its references to the nuclear arsenal at its disposal are nothing more than a bluff. The Americans have even been calm – at least outwardly about the deployment of Russian non-strategic nuclear weapons in Belarus. Such “fearlessness” is a direct result of the geopolitical changes of the last three decades and the change of generations in power in the US and the West in general.

The fear of the atomic bomb, present in the second half of the twentieth century, has disappeared. Nuclear weapons have been taken out of the equation. The practical conclusion is clear: there is no need to be afraid of such a Russian response. This is an extremely dangerous misconception. The trajectory of the Ukrainian war points to an escalation of the conflict both horizontally (by expanding the theater of military action) and vertically (by increasing the power of the weapons used and the intensity of their use). It must be soberly acknowledged that this momentum is heading towards a direct armed confrontation between Russia and NATO. If the accumulated inertia is not stopped, such a clash will take place, and in this case the war, having spread to Western Europe, will almost inevitably become nuclear. And after some time, a nuclear war in Europe will most likely lead to an exchange of blows between Russia and the US.

The Americans and their allies are truly playing Russian roulette. Yes, so far the Russian response to the bombing of Nord Stream, the drone attack on the strategic Engels airbase, the entry of Western-armed saboteurs into the Belgorod region and many other actions by the Washington-backed and controlled side has been relatively restrained. As Putin recently made clear, there are good reasons for this restraint. Russia, the president said, is capable of destroying any building in Kiev, but will not stoop to the methods of terror used by the enemy. But Putin added that Russia was considering various options for destroying Western warplanes if they are based in NATO countries and directly take part in the war in Ukraine.

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Trying to think of another “leader” who wanted to ban his mother tongue.

Zelensky Bans Russian Books (RT)

President Vladimir Zelensky announced on Thursday that he had a signed a law making it illegal to import and distribute Russian and Belarusian publishing products in Ukraine. However, some Ukrainian officials have pointed out that the step could hinder Kiev’s plans to join the EU. The move comes after Ukrainian citizens registered an online petition on the official presidential website asking for the ban back in May. The petition reached the 25,000-vote threshold required for it to be formally considered by the head of state. The author of the petition noted that the Ukrainian parliament had already approved the law on June 19, 2022, but that Zelensky had never signed the bill. As a result, Russian books continued to be sold in Ukraine, which undermines “the information security of the state and the economic foundations of Ukrainian book publishing,” according to the petition.

“I consider the law to be correct,” Zelensky stated in a Telegram post announcing that he had finally signed the legislation. He noted, however, that the text of the legislation had been sent to EU institutions for an “additional assessment” of whether it could breach Kiev’s obligations to protect minority rights, particularly linguistic ones, in the context of Ukraine’s application for EU membership. In a written response to the petition last month, Zelensky explained that there had been a “number of reservations” that prevented the law from being adopted.

The president stated that Ukraine’s Ministry of Justice had proposed applying the right of veto to the bill, arguing that completely banning the import and distribution of Russian publications would contradict several articles of Ukraine’s constitution. Additionally, Zelensky said that despite agreeing with the nature of the law, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry had also advised vetoing the bill. The ministry had warned that its current version “does not meet the norms and standards of the EU in the field of human rights, including freedom of opinion, protection of the rights of national minorities, prohibition of discrimination on the basis of language, and therefore may complicate the process of negotiations on Ukraine’s accession to the European Union.”

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“Khren Im”

On Horseradish & Nuclear War (Scott Ritter)

Russian President Vladimir Putin is known for a lot of things — his “in your face” speeches, his marathon unscripted press conferences and his stoic impassiveness in the face of adversity come to mind. One thing that doesn’t jump out at the average observer is his earthy sense of humor. Long-time Putin watchers know that the Russian leader on occasion spices up his formal presentations with off-color quips which, unless one is well versed in colloquial Russian of the back-alley variety, can get missed by the casual listener. During the June 16 discussion period of the plenary session of the 2023 St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, the Russian leader was asked about his views on the potential use of nuclear weapons in the context of the ongoing Ukrainian conflict. “This use of nuclear weapons is certainly theoretically possible,” Putin bluntly answered.

“For Russia, this is possible if a threat is created to our territorial integrity, independence and sovereignty, the existence of the Russian state. Nuclear weapons are created in order to ensure our security in the broadest sense of the word and the existence of the Russian state.” Putin’s answer reflected long-standing Russian nuclear doctrine, which postulates the use of nuclear weapons in the case of an existential threat, nuclear or otherwise, to the survival of Russia. Putin then sought to put the audience at ease. “But we, firstly, do not have such a need,” Putin noted, “and secondly, the very factor of reasoning on this topic already lowers the possibility of lowering the threshold for the use of weapons. This is the first part.” What came next was classic Putin. “The second is that we have more such weapons [i.e., tactical nuclear weapons] than the NATO countries. They know about it and all the time they persuade us to start talks on reductions.”

Putin paused, before shrugging and, with a half-smile, saying “Khren Im”. Khren Im is a Russian slang term derived from the word “horseradish” (khren), thus a literal translation of the phrase used by Putin would be “horseradish them.” But khren closely resembles a more salty term used to describe male genitalia, and when used in this manner, khren Im is understood to mean “F*ck them.” “F*ck them, you know?” Putin said, to the obvious mirth of the audience. “As our people say. Because, in the clumsy terms of economics, this is our competitive advantage.”

The “them” in the horseradish reference made by the Russian president is the United States. Two weeks prior to Putin’s man-in-the-street reaction, on June 2, U.S. President Joe Biden’s national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, addressed a conference hosted by the Arms Control Association, in Washington, D.C. The topic, not surprisingly, was the administration’s approach to U.S.-Russian arms control.

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Another way to poke the bear.

New Catastrophe Looms In Kosovo As West ‘Toys’ With International Law (TASS)

The West is toying with international law in an attempt to create alternative ways to resolve the Kosovo problem, and this may lead the region down a path to calamity, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said during a briefing Wednesday. The diplomat underscored that the US and the EU continue to turn a blind eye towards Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti’s subversive actions and deliberately bring the settlement to a deadlock in order to “force the Serbs to surrender their vital interests.”


“Since April 2013, Pritstina has been shirking its commitments to Serb municipalities in Kosovo. Instead of pressing the Kosovars, US mediators are laying the groundwork to radically decrease the community’s authority, and, of course, its replacement with some mechanism on protection of language rights, supporting Kurti’s claim about, as he put it, the non-territorial nature of this structure,” she noted. “Amid these circumstances, there is a growing risk that the West will toy with international law in an aim to create alternative options for resolution of the Kosovo problem, taking the region to a new catastrophe, yet another one.” The diplomat noted that there is a reliable foundation for settling the situation, which remains fully in effect. “That being the UN Security Council Resolution 1244 – the basis for negotiations between Belgrade and Pristina, for any mediation efforts of the international community – the foundation is the same,” she added.

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Mr. Banker should know?!

Global Financial System Exhausted, Not Up to New Challenges – Macron (Sp.)

The existing global financial system is outdated and does not meet the new challenges, while the new system must be adopted and aligned with the world’s goals, French President Emmanuel Macron said on Thursday.
“Our world is undergoing ever greater upheaval… We have a financial system which is the product of a previous consensus, which has shown its effectiveness, and bailed us out in past decades, but is probably not evolving fast enough. It is no longer adapted, and needs to be realigned with our goals,” Macron said at the opening of a New Global Financial Pact summit in Paris, which was streamed on the official website of the event.

Macron noted that no country had to choose whether to fight poverty or protect the planet and each country should be free to choose its own way, hence the new financial pact had to respect the sovereignty of the countries of the South much more. “We will take a major step, as we will start by establishing a new consensus. The fight against poverty, the decarbonization of our economy in order to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, and the protection of biodiversity, are closely intertwined. We therefore need to agree together on the best means to address these challenges in the poor and emerging countries of the developing world, when it comes to the amount of investment, to comprehensive reform of infrastructure like the World Bank, the IMF, and public and private funds, and how to set a new process in motion,” Macron said.

Macron also said that the private sector had a big role to play, but it needed to receive credible guarantees. The president added that the summit should result in concrete solutions that would change the lives of countries struggling with climate challenges and suggested setting up a follow-up mechanism. The summit in Paris, which runs from June 22-23, aims to establish new agreements between the countries of the Global North and the Global South and to combat climate change and the global crisis.

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Too late.

Biden Sends Sullivan, Nuland To Turn BRICS War Skeptics Against Russia (ZH)

At a moment President Zelensky has confessed that Ukraine’s counteroffensive which was launched this month has been “slower than desired”, President Biden’s national security advisor Jake Sullivan is mounting a big push to convince “skeptics” from developing nations to become more firmly supportive of Kiev’s war effort. “Joe Biden’s top national security aide will fly to Denmark this weekend at the behest of Kyiv’s government for an unannounced meeting with representatives of several developing countries that have not condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine,” Financial Times has reported. A planned Copenhagen meeting is expected to include large but ‘neutral’ countries like Brazil, India, and South Africa – the latter which has of late been accused of actively supporting Moscow.

Sullivan’s initiative came at the request of the Ukrainian government, also as Russia’s economy has been successfully weathering the storm of US/EU-led sanctions, in particular upping its energy exports to BRICS countries. As for the as yet unannounced list of likely attendees in Denmark, FT details based on its sources: “Officials from Turkey and possibly China could also attend. One of the people familiar with the plans said that, following the Ukrainian request, Washington has been encouraging China, India, Brazil, Turkey and South Africa to attend. Sullivan will travel with Victoria Nuland, the number-three official at the US state department. A senior EU official will also participate.” BRICS countries have by and large been so quiet about the Russian invasion that they’ve even been accused of outright aiding and abetting Moscow’s offensive.

When discussing Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s three-day visit to Washington this week, Sullivan told reporters, “We think this actually sends a message to the coalition and Ukraine that we’re working to advocate on their behalf with a broader range of countries than just those that show up around the table either in Nato…or at the G7.” It remains that the major economies of India, Brazil, China and South Africa have persisted in their refusal to cooperate with Western sanctions on Russia. In Beijing’s case, it has actually directed more criticism at both NATO and the United States for “arrogance” and “imperialism”.

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Every day, there are new developments. Step by step. And unstoppable.

The Greater Eurasia Project: Building Bridges, Breaking Barriers (Pepe Escobar)

On July 4, at a New Delhi summit, Iran will finally become a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). That will be one of the key decisions of the summit, held via video-conference, along with the signing of a memorandum on the path by Belarus to also become a member state. In parallel, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexei Overchuk has confirmed that Iran and the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) should sign a free trade agreement (FTA) by the end of 2023. The FTA will expand an interim deal that already lowers customs duties on hundreds of categories of goods. Russia and Iran – two key poles of Eurasia integration – have been getting closer and closer geoeconomically since the west’s sanctions tsunami that followed Russia’s February 2022 Special Military Operation (SMO) in Ukraine.

The EAEU – as much as the SCO and BRICS – is on a roll: FTAs are expected to be clinched, from middle to long term, with Egypt, India, Indonesia, and the UAE. Overchuck admits negotiations may be “very difficult” and “take years,” considering “the interests of all five EAEU member states, their businesses, and their consumers.” Yet despite the obvious complexities, this high-speed rail geoeconomic train has already left the station. In a parallel track, the members of the Asian Clearing Union (ACU), during a recent summit in Iran, decided to launch a new cross-border financial messaging system this month as a rival to the western-centric SWIFT. The ACU comprises the Central Banks of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and Iran: a healthy mix of West Asia, Southeast Asia, and South Asia.

It was the Central Bank of Iran – still under harsh sanctions – that developed the new bank messaging system, so new it’s not yet known by its own acronym. Crucially, the Governor of Russia’s Central Bank took part in the ACU summit as an observer, along with officials from Belarus, which applied for ACU membership two weeks ago. Iranian Central Bank Governor Mohammad Reza Farzin confirmed not only the interest of potential members to join the ACU, but also the drive to set up a basket of currencies for payment of bilateral trade deals. Call it a de-dollarization fast track. As Iran’s first Vice President, Mohammad Mokhber summed it up: “De-dollarization is not a voluntary choice by countries anymore; it is an inevitable response to the weaponization of the dollar.”

Iran is now at the heart of all things multipolar. The recent discovery of a massive lithium field holding roughly 10 percent of the world’s reserves, coupled with the quite possible admission of Iran into the expanded BRICS – or BRICS+ – as early as this year, has bolstered scenarios of an upcoming BRICS currency backed by commodities: gold, oil, gas and – inevitably – lithium. All this frantic Global South-led activity stands in sharp contrast to the sputtering deceleration of the Empire of Sanctions. The Global South has had enough of the US sanctioning and banning whoever, whatever, and whenever they like, in defense of a hazy, arbitrary “rules-based international order.”

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“..the agencies will do everything they can to help Biden or whoever replaces him from the Democratic Party but they will be a lot more careful about how they do it..”

CIA Vet Warns US Intel ‘Will Do Everything’ to Help Dems in 2024 Race (Sp.)

Former Special Counsel John Durham offered his first public testimony before the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday regarding the details of his report into the FBI’s handling of allegations of collusion between ex-President Donald Trump and Russia. The day before, Durham testified behind closed doors to the US House Intelligence Committee. While it is not completely clear whether the Federal Bureau of Investigation knew from the outset that dug-up “information on Trump” had been paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign in 2016, there is “no excuse for their having learned that and, nevertheless, proceeded with the investigation,” former CIA station chief Philip Giraldi told Sputnik. “There might have been personal malice involved in going after Trump, but that has not been clearly demonstrated,” the Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest added, referencing the FBI’s investigation into the alleged Trump-Russia “collusion”.

Former Special Counsel John Durham paid his second visit to Capitol Hill on Wednesday to face the House Judiciary Committee over the details of his May report, released after almost a four-year-long investigation into the origins of the FBI’s Trump-Russia investigation codenamed, Crossfire Hurricane. Durham had found that the agency had been “seriously deficient,” relying on “raw, unanalyzed, and uncorroborated intelligence,” when probing the 2016 Donald Trump campaign’s alleged ties to “Russia.” “One has to assume that the Bureau felt it had a great deal invested in maintaining Democratic Party control of the presidency and that there were concerns that Trump would upset the arrangements made under [Barack] Obama,” Giraldi said.

The Durham report had also exposed the Democratic establishment’s anti-Trump narrative, and the role of Hillary Clinton’s campaign in spawning and then pushing the Trump-Russia collusion hoax. During his probe, the special counsel charged and convicted FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith, who admitted to doctoring an email to state that Trump aide Carter Page had never been a CIA asset (which was not true) in order to push ahead with surveilling the former Trump campaign adviser. Durham also brought charges against Hillary Clinton’s campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann and Brookings Institution scholar Igor Danchenko for lying to the FBI. Danchenko has served as the main ‘subsource’ for ex-MI6 agent Christopher Steele, the author of the now infamous Steele dossier. It had been funded by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) through the law firm Perkins Coie, which Marc Elias and Michael Sussmann worked for at the time.

[..] Ahead of John Durham’s testimony on June 21, Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) underscored in his opening statement that the hearing was tasked to provide more “detail and add more color” to the findings of the May report. “Seven years of attacking Trump is scary enough… What’s more frightening is that any one of us could be next,” Jordan emphasized. A number of Republicans echoed John Durham’s calls for reforming the FBI, underscoring that the agency, had become “politicized” and “weaponized”, and had carried out a “politically motivated” investigation of Donald Trump. Looking ahead at the next election cycle, where both Biden and Trump are gearing up to vie for another Oval Office stint, Philip Giraldi concluded: “For 2024, I expect that the agencies will do everything they can to help Biden or whoever replaces him from the Democratic Party but they will be a lot more careful about how they do it than they were in 2020.”

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I see the word bombshell too much.

New Bombshell Evidence Against Bidens, DOJ, AG Garland (ZH)

Several bombshells dropped by two IRS whistleblowers on Thursday reveal, among other things, that Joe Biden’s DOJ buried evidence of Hunter Biden’s tax crimes – and stopped US Attorney David Weiss from bringing charges against Hunter in two different jurisdictions last year. According to Rep. Jason Smith (R-MO), Weiss sought to be appointed as a special counsel in the case last year but was denied as well. What’s more, the IRS sought felony charges against Hunter, send their recommendations to the Biden DOJ, and they ‘came out as two misdemeanors,’ Byron York tweets. According to the whistleblowers, one of whom is Gary Shipley – who came forward weeks ago to reveal his identity, the IRS was notified of potential evidence “in the guest house of former Vice President Biden,” but were rebuffed by US Attorney Lesley Wolf, who said there was “no way,” as search warrant “would ever get approved.”

“Whistleblowers describe how the Biden Justice Department intervened and overstepped in a campaign to protect the son of Joe Biden by delaying, divulging, and denying an ongoing investigation into Hunter Biden’s alleged tax crimes,” said Smith in a statement. “The testimony shows tactics used by the Justice Department to delay the investigation long enough to reach the statute of limitations, evidence they divulged sensitive actions by the investigative team to Biden’s attorneys, and denied requests by the U.S. Attorney to bring charges against Biden.” During seven hours of testimony before the Ways and Means Committee, Shipley and the other whistleblower’s testimony implicates both AG Merrick Garland and IRS Commissioner Daniel Werfel for lying to Congress about political interference in the Biden probe.

“Whistleblower One’s story was corroborated by Whistleblower Two,” said Rep. Kevin Hern (R-OK). “One individual came forward and laid out the full case of what’s going on. The second individual, through his attorney, asked Ways and Means to contact him and ask for testimony. So we didn’t seek these, they sought us,” added Rep. Greg Murphy (R-NC).

As Techno Fog notes via The Reactionary; “With the rejection from the DC US Attorney, the team sought the approval to bring tax charges for years 2016-2019 in the Central District of California. Shapley concluded that “the Central District of California declined to allow charges to be brought there.” The rejection to bring charges in DC and California stands in stark contrast to the testimony of Attorney General Garland, who in March of 2023 stated that US Attorney Weiss had the full authority to “bring cases in other jurisdictions.” Garland also said that he personally would ensure that Weiss could “carry out his investigation and that he [would] be able to run it.” Both those statements now appear to be false. (Your humble author thinks the Republicans knew Garland was making misrepresentations at the time.)”

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“..you have to be impressed with the fact that they just continue to shove this nonsense in our face knowing that they could get away with it.”

US Justice is Blind – Unless Your Name is Hunter Biden (Tweedie)

US President Joe Biden’s son was brazenly let off scot-free in a “sweetheart deal,” say two media commentators. Hunter Biden had been under investigation by the FBI for soliciting millions in bribes from foreign businesspeople in return for influence over the then-vice president. That includes an alleged $5 million from Mykola Zlochevsky, co-owner of Ukrainian energy firm Burisma Holdings which employed Hunter as a company director and which was investigated for corruption by Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin until Joe Biden pressured Kiev to sack him. Hunter is also suspected of owning a handgun unlawfully, which reportedly ended up being thrown in a dumpster. Furthermore, a trove of photos on his abandoned “Laptop from Hell” appeared to show him using crack cocaine and sleeping with underage prostitutes.

But on Tuesday, it was reported that he had struck a deal with prosecutors — pending approval by a federal judge — to plead guilty to tax evasion and illegal possession of a firearm in return for avoiding jail time. Former US diplomat Jim Jatras told Sputnik that Hunter Biden’s plea bargain was a “sweetheart deal.” “I don’t know how a plea on two charges automatically extends to, say ‘Oh, yeah, and all that other stuff. We’re going to give you a guarantee that there will be no charges,'” he said. The foreign policy expert said that was “an outrageous miscarriage of justice.” “I know the rich and powerful and the politically well-connected and treated differently from everybody else, but this is really just unprecedented,” Jatras stressed. The pundit said the plea bargain deal would play into the hands of the Republican Party.

“It’s what Republicans love best. They could win and jump up and down and scream in outrage without actually having to do anything,” Jatras said. “It completely absolves them of any responsibility to actually see that justice is done.” Journalist Jim Hoft told Sputnik that he was not surprised that the president’s wayward son got off scot-free. “After what we’ve seen the past few years, not really,” he said. “But it is quite galling. And you have to be impressed with the fact that they just continue to shove this nonsense in our face knowing that they could get away with it.” The editor said Hunter Biden was “one of the most crooked people in the country.” “And he gets a pass and a little slap on the wrist, if that,” Hoft observed. “It’s really it’s stunning what’s happening to our country. We’re all witnessing it.”

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“Peter Hotez – who he says will “never debate Bobby Kennedy Jr., but it doesn’t matter. Kennedy has already won.”

Tucker Calls Out ‘Media Hysteria Typhoon’ Over RFK Jr. (ZH)

In his latest episode, Tucker Carlson discussed the media’s absolute hatred for Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who was immediately attacked by the press upon his announcement that he would run against President Joe Biden in 2024. “CBS News viewers likely were appalled in its coverage of Kennedy’s announcement. CBS denounced the candidate’s views as ‘misleading’ and ‘dangerous,'” noted Carlson, adding “The LA Times called him a threat to democracy.” “At the offices of National Public Radio in Washington, a full-blown category-5 hysteria typhoon broke out. NPR devoted an entire segment to savaging Kennedy – not just as a candidate, but as a human being,” Carlson continued. “NPR described him as someone who, for his own perverse reasons, has made “debunked and false and misleading claims that undermine trust in vaccines.

And who, in his spare time, provides moral support to crazed extremists who “rally under the banner of what they call liberty, or freedom.”” “People Magazine didn’t even bother to report a single word of anything Kennedy said!” Carlson exclaimed, “and instead wrote an entire story about his relatives hate him.” “Kennedy Jr. faced censorship on Instagram and YouTube for expressing his views,” he continued, adding that RFK Jr. raised questions about “the rise in allergies, asthma, autism, and other conditions related to vaccines,” while “the media and medical establishment vilified Kennedy Jr. for his views, calling him a lunatic, Nazi, and extremist supporter.”


Carlson then goes into a defense of Kennedy’s right to raise questions over vaccines, and the response one gets for doing so. “Bobby Kennedy won’t stop asking, and that’s why they hate him,” Carlson said. Carlson then went after debate-dodging doctor, Peter Hotez – who he says will “never debate Bobby Kennedy Jr., but it doesn’t matter. Kennedy has already won.” “Hotez attacked Kennedy Jr. and called for vaccine mandates, accusing those who disagree of being white nationalists and Russian agents,” said Carlson, who then noted how Hotez chickened out of a debate with RFK Jr.

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Wow art

 

 


This breathtaking photo by Jessica Blacklow shows a dozen dolphins spotted enjoying a remarkable synchronised surf off the coast of Sydney

 

 

Evil

 

 

Cobra moth
https://twitter.com/i/status/1671853300835143681

 

 

Soggy bottom

 

 

 

 

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Apr 142023
 
 April 14, 2023  Posted by at 9:15 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  40 Responses »


Jean-Michel Basquiat Warrior 1982

 

US Fanning Ukraine Crisis, Exacerbating Ukrainians’ Suffering – Xinhua (TASS)
CIA Director Concedes US Power Is Waning (RT)
World Faces ‘Most Dangerous Period Of Time In History’ – Trump (RT)
Bolton Touts ‘Grand Strategy’ To Counter Russia and China (RT)
US Military Would Need Conscription to Fight China (ET)
Stalemate Will Force Ukraine To Enact ‘Full Mobilization’ – Media (RT)
Seymour Hersh: The CIA Knows Ukrainian Officials Are Skimming US Aid (Antiwar)
Moscow Urges Washington To Issue Visas To Russian Delegation To UN Events (TASS)
Brazil Rebels Against US Dollar ‘Straitjacket’ (RT)
Frozen Assets To Be Returned To Russia After End Of Conflict (TASS)
UN Seeking To Reconnect Some Russian Banks To SWIFT (RT)
Trump Testifies In New York Business Fraud Case (Az.)
Appeals Court Ruling May Threaten DOJ Position in Dozens of Jan. 6 Cases (ET)
New York Times Is Now Telling Bigger Lies Than Iraq WMDs (Swanson)
Anheuser-Busch Loses $6BN In Six Days After Bud Light Trans Ad Campaign (ZH)

 

 

 

 

RFKjr Milgram

RFK jr autism

 

 

 

 

Babies stroke

 

 

Spike sperm
https://twitter.com/i/status/1646520024667148295

 

 

 

 

Rogan Taibbi

 

 

Tucker Musk

 

 

Tucker hot war

DC Draino:
Jack Texeira, the Ukraine Whistleblower, exposed Biden illegally putting US troops in Ukraine w/o Congressional authorization per the War Powers Resolution of 1973, an impeachable offense
His patriotism may end up stopping WW3
He doesn’t deserve jail time
He deserves an award

Pepe Escobar:
Old school Beltway intel source, retired:
Controlled leak.
Internal.
Way, way up – beyond the CIA.
21-year old gamer is a fall guy.
The circus is in town – actually a show that never ends.

 

 

 

 

“..the biggest peacebreaker and troublemaker in today’s world..”

“..It remains to be seen if they have noticed the changes in the Global South and started to reflect on the reasons behind them..”

US Fanning Ukraine Crisis, Exacerbating Ukrainians’ Suffering – Xinhua (TASS)

The United States has been fueling the crisis in Ukraine as it hampers peace there, while inflicting more pain on the Ukrainians, Xinhua said in a commentary on Friday. “As for the Ukraine crisis, the United States is constantly fanning the flame and hindering other countries from promoting talks for peace,” the Chinese news agency said. According to the commentary, leaders of many developing countries believe that by prolonging the crisis, Washington “is exacerbating the Ukrainians’ suffering, and impeding the resolution of other pressing issues facing the international community.” As a result, the international community, especially developing nations, “are more and more vocal in their criticism of the hegemonic and selfish behavior of the United States,” Xinhua maintains. While international peace and stability has been the biggest aspiration for developing countries, the agency argued, “it was made out of reach by the United States – the biggest peacebreaker and troublemaker in today’s world.”


“After the escalation of the Ukraine crisis, US-led Western countries launched severe sanctions against Russia, resulting in a spike of prices of global food, energy and other commodities, which overwhelmed developing countries,” the news agency emphasized. “It is obvious that more and more developing countries are now vocal in their opposition to the various irresponsible actions of the United States, with many refusing to follow the United States in imposing sanctions against Russia,” Xinhua added. “For years, American politicians have been used to pointing fingers at other countries and acting willfully on the international arena. It remains to be seen if they have noticed the changes in the Global South and started to reflect on the reasons behind them,” Xinhua concluded.

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“..Beijing is “not content to only have a seat at the table; it wants to run the table,” while Russia is seeking to “upend the table altogether.”

CIA Director Concedes US Power Is Waning (RT)

The dominant global role of the US can no longer be guaranteed as the country is witnessing a time of change “that comes along a couple of times a century,” CIA Director Bill Burns has claimed. Speaking at the Baker Institute earlier this week, Burns said that although Washington “still has a better hand to play than any of our rivals,” it is “no longer the only big kid on the geopolitical block and our position at the head of the table isn’t guaranteed.” The CIA chief pointed to growing ties between China and Russia, which he argued will present a “formidable challenge” for his agency for years to come. According to Burns, Beijing is “not content to only have a seat at the table; it wants to run the table,” while Russia is seeking to “upend the table altogether.”

Burns, who served as the US ambassador to Moscow under George W. Bush, condemned Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, calling it an act of “brutish aggression.” He claimed the CIA has provided “good intelligence” that has “helped the Ukrainians defend themselves” and cemented “a strong coalition in support of Ukraine.” Burns added that Kiev’s long-anticipated spring offensive would feature “strong material and intelligence support from the US and our allies.” The spy chief claimed that Russian President Vladimir Putin is “not serious about negotiations” on a peaceful resolution to the conflict, and suggested that only Ukrainian progress on the battlefield was “likely to shape prospects for diplomacy.”

Russia has repeatedly stated that it is open to peace talks and has blamed Kiev and its Western allies for blocking negotiations. Ukraine has placed a legal ban on any talks with Russia as it seeks to defeat its opponent on the battlefield. Regarding China, Burns insisted that Beijing remains the CIA’s “biggest long-term priority.” He noted that in the last few years, the intelligence agency has doubled the resources it focuses on China, including hiring and training Mandarin speakers and stepping up efforts to compete with Beijing on the world stage. “Managing a crucial and increasingly adversarial relationship with China will be the most significant test for American policy makers for decades to come,” the US official said, arguing that the risk of a conflict over Taiwan will continue to grow.

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“I think it’s much more than infrastructure we’re talking about.”

“..the most dangerous period of time in the history of our country and in the history of the world, right now, and we have an incompetent person at the top.”

World Faces ‘Most Dangerous Period Of Time In History’ – Trump (RT)

The world has been pushed to the brink of total destruction by inept leaders and nuclear weapons that are 500 times as powerful as the atomic bombs that American forces dropped on Japan during World War II, former US president Donald Trump has claimed. “Look, we could end up in World War III over this whole thing,” Trump said in a Fox News interview that was aired on Wednesday night. He added, “I believe it is the most dangerous period of time in history – number one, because we have people on top that are incompetent. That’s number one.” Trump made his comments in the context of the Russia-Ukraine crisis. Russian officials have warned that increasing US and NATO involvement in Ukraine, including massive military aid to Kiev, could escalate the crisis into a wider conflict, possibly involving nuclear weapons.

Asked by host Tucker Carlson who was behind last year’s bombing of Russia’s Nord Stream pipelines in the Baltic Sea, Trump said it wasn’t Moscow. He implied that Washington was involved in the sabotage, saying, “I don’t want to get our country in trouble, so I won’t answer it.” The former president acknowledged that it was “very dangerous” to blow up the pipelines, adding, “I think most people know who did it.” Asked whether the US put itself at risk of retaliatory strikes on its critical infrastructure, he said, “I think it’s much more than infrastructure we’re talking about.”

Trump also warned that nuclear weapons are the biggest threat facing the world today, and the US and Russian arsenals could cause unprecedented destruction. “All it takes is one madman, and you’re gonna have a problem the likes of which the world has never seen.” Trump, who is currently polling as the leading Republican Party candidate in the 2024 presidential race, blamed current US leadership for heightening the risk of nuclear war with Russia and China. “The most dangerous period of time – because of weaponry, because of nuclear, because of weaponry – the most dangerous period of time in the history of our country and in the history of the world, right now, and we have an incompetent person at the top.

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“Bolton urged Washington to prepare for what happens “after Ukraine wins its war with Russia.”

Bolton Touts ‘Grand Strategy’ To Counter Russia and China (RT)

Former US National Security Advisor John Bolton has urged Washington to implement a new Cold War-style strategy against Russia and China. According to the long-time hawk, the West should cut back on social security to fund military spending, renew testing of nuclear weapons, and provide NATO-like protection to Taiwan. Bolton, who served in the administration of President Donald Trump, described his “grand-strategy” approach to geopolitics in a Wall Street Journal column on Wednesday, urging candidates in the 2024 US presidential election to think in the same terms. The US should have a “contemporary reincarnation” of NSC-68, the top-secret document adopted under President Harry Truman which laid the foundation for militarizing the confrontation with the USSR. Bolton claimed that in the new Cold War, the US and its allies would be pitted against a Chinese-Russian “axis” and “accompanying rogue-state outriders like Iran and North Korea.”

He named several key points for his proposed strategy, including an immediate increase in military spending to Reagan-era levels, which he claimed should be maintained for the foreseeable future. Bolton also argued that Western nations should cut back on social spending, because “neither the obese welfare state nor massive income-redistribution schemes protect us from foreign adversaries.” In addition, he asserted that the US should upgrade its nuclear stockpiles, which would mean “the inevitable need to resume some underground testing.” Bolton’s plan also advocated the “improvement and expansion” of American military alliances, possibly by making NATO a global organization. This would help “exclude Moscow from regional influence, along with Beijing,” the former official claimed.

The self-governed Chinese island of Taiwan should get “much more military aid” from Western nations, which should “embed Taipei into collective-defense structures,” Bolton also suggested. The recommendation comes despite the Chinese government identifying Taiwanese separatism as a major ‘red line’ which may trigger military action if crossed. Finally, Bolton urged Washington to prepare for what happens “after Ukraine wins its war with Russia.” He claimed that such an outcome could lead to Russia’s fragmentation, and warned that China would then seize some of its territories, providing it with “direct access to the Arctic, including even the Bering Strait, facing Alaska.” Moscow has claimed that the conflict in Ukraine is part of a US proxy war against Russia, and that Washington’s goal is to partition the country. The Russian leadership has argued that this threat leaves it with no other option but to succeed in Ukraine.

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“Our army is too small as constituted to actually prosecute a war with these countries, but it’s large enough that it’s sucking a lot of resources away.”

US Military Would Need Conscription to Fight China (ET)

The U.S. military could not achieve victory in a war with China using its current, all-volunteer force, according to one expert. The United States will thus need to radically transform its force structure to better contend with the emerging threat environment, up to and including by reinstating conscription, said Jonathan Askonas, an assistant professor of Politics at Catholic University of America. “This is a five-alarm fire,” Askonas said during an April 11 discussion with the Hudson Institute think tank. “We’re facing global threats and we have a force structure which we know will not work against those threats. “We basically can’t fight a war larger than Iraq with the all-volunteer force.”

The all-volunteer force has been a staple of U.S. military organization since 1973, when the draft was terminated along with the United States’ direct involvement in the Vietnam War. Unfortunately, Askonas said, the all-volunteer force was proving incapable of generating the number of service members required for a war between great powers, and its burdensome logistical processes were likely to be ineffective in either a conflict with China in the Indo-Pacific theater or supporting European powers against Russia. “We have a Goldilocks problem,” Askonas said. “Our army is too small as constituted to actually prosecute a war with these countries, but it’s large enough that it’s sucking a lot of resources away.”

“We have to be ruthless. We need to adapt our force structure not to hypothetical threats or in some universal Swiss army knife approach, but to the actual threats that we face.” To that end, Askonas suggested that the military should re-adopt a “cadre” system for deploying the military, not dissimilar to that used in World War II. Under such a system, the number of resource-heavy full time service members would be decreased in peacetime in favor of investing in expensive, slow-to-build items like warships.

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There is no stalemate.

Stalemate Will Force Ukraine To Enact ‘Full Mobilization’ – Media (RT)

The US believes that neither Ukraine nor Russia will achieve major gains on the battlefield this year, and that the ensuing stalemate will force Kiev to call up every last available man to fight, according to leaked Pentagon documents cited by the Washington Post. The US Defense Intelligence Agency views both Kiev and Moscow as having “insufficient troops and supplies for effective operations,” and as such predicts that the conflict in Ukraine will drag on into 2024, with both sides achieving only “marginal” territorial gains this year, the newspaper reported on Wednesday. Nevertheless, “negotiations to end the conflict are unlikely,” the agency reportedly wrote in its assessment, which was included in a trove of leaked documents.

The Post and a number of newspapers have published information from some of these documents, while simultaneously helping the government track down the suspected leaker, who was arrested by the FBI on Thursday after the New York Times published his identity. In a protracted conflict with little chance of victory or negotiations, it is Ukraine that will pay the heaviest price, the Pentagon reportedly believes. Such a stalemate will force Kiev to enact the “full mobilization” of its remaining male population, the Post reported, a move that will trigger public “criticism” of Vladimir Zelensky’s government and make “leadership changes more likely.”

The document also gives scenarios in which Ukraine either scores a decisive victory, forcing Russia to escalate or negotiate, or Russia scores a victory that enables it to demand regime change in Kiev. However, the stalemate outcome is reportedly listed as “the most likely scenario.” Kiev’s efforts to conscript civilians into military service have proven unpopular, with numerous videos surfacing showing men being forcibly detained on the streets and press-ganged into service. With Ukrainian lawmakers reportedly considering expanding the draft, many of those already in uniform have been funneled into the encircled Donbass town of Artyomovsk (known as Bakhmut in Ukraine), which they consider no longer worth defending.

Other recently leaked Pentagon documents revealed that, as of February, the US believes Ukraine has suffered up to 131,000 casualties in the conflict thus far, including up to 17,500 killed. Establishing a true body count is difficult, as Ukraine rarely publishes its losses. Last autumn, EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen put Kiev’s fatalities at 100,000, a claim that was disputed by Kiev and later removed from the EU’s websites. The Post noted that the documents did not specify whether a “leadership change” in Kiev refers to a rotation of political leaders or military brass. Officials in Kiev are reportedly outraged over the leak, which also included information suggesting Ukraine is ill-equipped to mount its long-promised spring counteroffensive.

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“..Burns presented Zelensky with a list of 35 generals and senior government officials whose corruption was known to the CIA. Zelensky responded by dismissing 10 officials..”

“.. Zelensky “has been buying the fuel from Russia, the country with which it, and Washington, are at war, and the Ukrainian president and many in his entourage have been skimming untold millions from the American dollars earmarked for diesel fuel payments.”

Seymour Hersh: The CIA Knows Ukrainian Officials Are Skimming US Aid (Antiwar)

On Wednesday, Investigative journalist Seymour Hersh published a report on Substack that alleged the CIA was aware of widespread corruption in Ukraine and the embezzlement of US aid. The report said the Ukrainian government has been using US taxpayer money to purchase diesel from Russia to fuel its military. Hersh said Zelensky “has been buying the fuel from Russia, the country with which it, and Washington, are at war, and the Ukrainian president and many in his entourage have been skimming untold millions from the American dollars earmarked for diesel fuel payments.” Hersh said according to one estimate by CIA analysts, at least $400 million in funds were embezzled last year. Sources told Hersh that Ukrainian officials are also “competing” to set up front companies for export contracts to private arms dealers around the world.

The issue of corruption was raised during a meeting between CIA Director William Burns and Zelensky in January. An intelligence official with direct knowledge of the meeting told Hersh that Burns delivered a stunning message to Zelensky. Hersh wrote: “The senior generals and government officials in Kiev were angry at what they saw as Zelensky’s greed, so Burns told the Ukrainian president, because ‘he was taking a larger share of the skim money than was going to the generals.’” During the meeting, Burns presented Zelensky with a list of 35 generals and senior government officials whose corruption was known to the CIA. Zelensky responded by dismissing 10 officials who were engaged in flagrant corruption. “The ten he got rid of were brazenly bragging about the money they had—driving around Kiev in their new Mercedes,” the intelligence official said.

Hersh said Zelensky’s “half-hearted response” and the “lack of concern” in the White House angered some US intelligence officials. The intelligence official speaking to Hersh criticized President Biden’s two main foreign policy advisors, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan. “They have no experience, judgment, and moral integrity. They just tell lies, make up stories. Diplomatic deniability is something else,” the official said. The official said there was a “total breakdown between the White House leadership and the intelligence community.” The report said the rift started in the fall when the Nord Stream natural gas pipelines were blown up. According to Hersh’s earlier reporting, President Biden ordered the operation that took out the pipelines. “Destroying the Nord Stream pipelines was never discussed, or even known in advance, by the community,” the official said.

The official said there is “no strategy for ending the war” within the Biden administration and offered more scathing criticism of Blinken and Sullivan. “Burns is not the problem,” the official said. “The problem is Biden and his principal lieutenants—Blinken and Sullivan and their court of worshippers—who see those who criticize Zelensky as being pro-Putin. ‘We are against evil. Ukraine will fight ’til the last military shell is gone, and still fight.’ And here’s Biden who is telling America that we’re going to fight as long as it takes.” Hersh’s story comes after a series of leaked top-secret documents from the Pentagon and other government agencies surfaced online. Some of the documents show US war planning for Ukraine and reveal the US doubts Kyiv’s ability to launch a successful counter-offensive, offering a starkly different view of Ukraine’s abilities than what Biden officials have been saying publicly

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Move the UN. Or dissolve it altogether.

Moscow Urges Washington To Issue Visas To Russian Delegation To UN Events (TASS)

Moscow urges Washington to immediately issue visas to members of Russia’s delegation to events related to the country’s chairmanship of the UN Security Council, Russian Ambassador to the US Anatoly Antonov said. “The request to issue visas for the Russian delegation and the journalists was sent to the US Embassy in Moscow at the end of March. However, not a single entry permission has been granted so far,” the envoy said in a statement, commenting on the issuance of visas to members of the Russian delegation led by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. “There was an agreement that the Russian media representatives would visit the American diplomatic mission on March 31 to have their visa applications examined. However, the appointment was canceled without any explanation less than one day prior to it. There is still no certainty, although there are only a few days left before the event,” Antonov noted.


“We urge Washington to immediately issue visas for our delegation, as well as for our journalists. Failure to do that is a violation of the United States’ obligations as the host country of the UN headquarters, which impedes appropriate, full-fledged functioning of the World Organization,” the Russian ambassador stressed. “An incomprehensible situation concerning the Minister’s special flight is evolving. The US authorities have not yet sanctioned the arrival of the aircraft. We expect Americans to promptly grant the flight permission without any conditions or restrictions,” Antonov added. The UN secretary general’s spokesman Stephane Dujarric said at a briefing on Wednesday that the United Nations expected the US to issue visas to members of Lavrov’s delegation, expected to visit the UN headquarters in late April.

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“Every night I ask myself why all countries have to base their trade on the dollar. Why can’t we do trade based on our own currencies?”

Brazil Rebels Against US Dollar ‘Straitjacket’ (RT)

Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has stated that developing nations should move away from the US dollar in favor of their own currencies in order to push back against American dominance over the global financial system. Speaking in Shanghai on Thursday during an official visit to China, Lula said the BRICS group – comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – should look for an alternative currency to the dollar for trade. “Every night I ask myself why all countries have to base their trade on the dollar. Why can’t we do trade based on our own currencies?” he said. “Who was it that decided that the dollar was the currency after the disappearance of the gold standard?”

The leftist leader went on to lament that “everyone depends on just one currency,” referring to the dollar, and proposed “a currency to finance trade relations between Brazil and China, between Brazil and other countries.” Lula kicked off his trip to China with an event to mark the appointment of former Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff as the head of the New Development Bank, also known as the ‘BRICS bank,’ which he said could free emerging economies “from submission to traditional financial institutions, which want to govern us.”

Brazilian Finance Minister Fernando Haddad also traveled with the president to China, where he told reporters that Brazil would aim to create trade mechanisms for developing countries to bypass the use of the dollar. “The advantage is to avoid the straitjacket imposed by necessarily having trade operations settled in a currency of a country not involved in the transaction,” he said. Lula’s visit to China comes as Beijing increasingly promotes the use of its own currency, the renminbi, to settle international transactions. Last month, Russia said it had adopted the yuan as one of its primary reserve currencies amid a massive sanctions campaign linked to the conflict in Ukraine, highlighting a gradual shift away from the Western financial system by some major powers.

Trade between China and Brazil has seen a significant boost over the last decade, with more than $150 billion in business recorded last year. Chinese firms have bought up large amounts of minerals and agricultural goods in the South American country, and invested in Brazilian infrastructure. The Brazilian president arrived in China on Wednesday night and will remain there until April 15. After his speech in Shanghai, Lula headed off to Beijing, where he is set to meet with President Xi Jinping on Friday. The two leaders are expected to focus on issues related to trade and foreign policy – such as China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which aims to develop roads, highways and other infrastructure in foreign countries – according to the Financial Times.

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“..the EU’s legal service has not yet found an answer to a question what to do if the EU loses these funds in a certain situation..”

Frozen Assets To Be Returned To Russia After End Of Conflict (TASS)

Lawyers of the European Commission (EC) have arrived at a conclusion that assets of the Bank of Russia frozen in the EU will have to be returned to Russia after the end of the conflict in Ukraine, Die Welt newspaper said on Thursday, citing an unpublished EC document. Assets of the Bank of Russia cannot be simply transferred to Ukraine, EC experts said. “There is political will but legal barriers are high. The European Commission comes to a sobering conclusion that frozen assets cannot be touched since once upon a time, when the war ends, they will have to be returned to Russia,” the newspaper informed. The next one suggested by the EC is to invest frozen assets of the Bank of Russia in European government bonds and use the interest for payments to Kiev. At the same time, the EU’s legal service has not yet found an answer to a question what to do if the EU loses these funds in a certain situation, the newspaper reported. Actions in such case still need to be clarified, Die Welt said.

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“..According to the Kremlin, only half of the agreement is currently being implemented because not all parties have kept their side of the bargain…”

UN Seeking To Reconnect Some Russian Banks To SWIFT (RT)

The United Nations is discussing bringing some Russian banks back to the SWIFT payment system in order to help keep grain shipments from Ukraine going, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric has said. When asked during a briefing on Wednesday if any progress had been made on Russia’s demands regarding the grain agreement, Dujarric said that UN officials were “trying to doggedly move the process forward.” Moscow warned on Wednesday that the outlook for extending beyond May 18 the grain deal, which ensures the safe export of grain and fertilizer from several Ukrainian Black Sea ports, was “not good.”

The Kremlin has demanded allowing Russian Agricultural Bank to return to SWIFT, permitting Russia to import agricultural machinery, as well as the removal of insurance restrictions, port access for Russian ships and cargo, and an unblocking of the financial activities of Russian fertilizer companies. “Obviously, the fact that a number of Russian financial institutions are not, if not all of them, I’m not sure, are not in the SWIFT system makes things more complicated. And we are in discussions with the people who are responsible for SWIFT and the Europeans and others on that,” Dujarric said.

According to him, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has no authority over SWIFT or over the EU member states that imposed anti-Russia sanctions. “He has no authority over insurance companies, shipping companies. He can’t tell them what to do,” the spokesman stressed, adding that “we’re trying to herd a whole group of people.” While the Western sanctions do not directly target Russian agricultural goods, they affect payments, insurance and shipping. With many Russian banks disconnected from SWIFT, direct settlements for exports have been made difficult. Under the pact, brokered in July last year by the UN and Türkiye, Russia was to receive a sanctions reprieve for its own agricultural goods. However, Moscow has voiced discontent with UN efforts to lift Western restrictions affecting the sector.

According to the Kremlin, only half of the agreement is currently being implemented because not all parties have kept their side of the bargain. In March, Moscow agreed to extend the agreement for 60 days, stressing it would only consider a further extension if the demands in relation to its own exports were met. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said at the time that the organization would “do everything possible to preserve the integrity” of the deal and make sure that it continued to function. The Black Sea export agreement has reportedly allowed more than 27.5 million tons of food to be shipped out, which, according to the UN, has helped lower food prices across the world.

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Every real estate company makes itself look the best it can. What fraud?

Trump Testifies In New York Business Fraud Case (Az.)

Former US President Donald Trump answered questions Thursday in New York during his second deposition in a civil case accusing him of business fraud, according to Anadolu Agency. The deposition came only a week after Trump’s arraignment on criminal charges in a separate lawsuit. The $250 million lawsuit filed by New York Attorney General Letitia James last year against the ex-president claims that Trump and his family misled banks and business associates about his net worth and the value of some of his assets. Trump denies any wrongdoing. The questions behind closed doors took nearly seven hours, according to media reports. ”This civil case is ridiculous, just like all of the other Election Interference cases being brought against me,” Trump wrote on his social media platform Truth Social ahead of his testimony. Last week, Trump pleaded not guilty to 34 felony counts related to his alleged involvement in a scheme to pay “hush money” to adult film star Stormy Daniels before the 2016 election.

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Obstruction.

Appeals Court Ruling May Threaten DOJ Position in Dozens of Jan. 6 Cases (ET)

An April 7 decision issued by the District of Columbia Court of Appeals may jeopardize a key legal backing used by the Department of Justice (DOJ) to prosecute participants in the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol breach, according to attorney Albert Watkins. “What this opinion did do was, it practically begged for other [Jan. 6] cases to be brought up to the Court of Appeals that would permit a more balanced opinion,” Watkins, who has represented four Jan. 6 defendants, including released prisoner Jacob Chansley, told The Epoch Times on April 11. Watkins’s comment came after a three-judge panel at the D.C. Court of Appeals on April 7, struck down a lower court’s ruling in a 2–1 vote, dismissing a federal charge against three Jan. 6 defendants, and rejected the lower court’s reasoning about the scope of the obstruction charge.

Although the higher court’s ruling (pdf) allowed the DOJ’s prosecution of these three specific defendants—Joseph Fischer, Edward Lang, and Garret Miller—to continue, the effect of the higher court’s opinion extends beyond these cases, the attorney said. According to Watkins, this extended effect has to do with the interpretation of language regarding “corrupt” intention in obstruction charges, considering that the DOJ has been using the obstruction charge as an “attractive” legal tool to prosecute Jan. 6 cases and score plea agreements. According to a provision in the statute for obstruction charge (18 U.S. Code Section 1512 2(c)), “Whoever corruptly … obstructs, influences, or impedes any official proceeding, or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.”

A narrowed definition of this provision could hinder the DOJ’s ability to use the charge further and introduce uncertainties in the ongoing trials, the attorney indicated. The DOJ had charged more than 200 Jan. 6 defendants with obstruction-related charges. “It should cause a certain degree of trepidation on the part of the Department of Justice about utilizing—in a very footloose and fancy-free fashion—the obstruction of an official proceeding charge as the count of choice for pleas,” Watkins said. “I will say it was, in many respects, an extraordinary opinion—more time was spent addressing potential issues not before the court than the issues actually before the court.”

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“What in the world would it mean to oppose organized mass murder because it skews right wing?”

New York Times Is Now Telling Bigger Lies Than Iraq WMDs (Swanson)

The New York Times routinely tells bigger lies than the clumsy nonsense it published about weapons in Iraq. Here’s an example. This package of lies is called “Liberals Have a Blind Spot on Defense” but mentions nothing related to defense. It simply pretends that militarism is defensive by applying that word and by lying that “we face simultaneous and growing military threats from Russia and China.” Seriously? Where? The U.S. military budget is more than those of most nations of the world combined. Only 29 nations, out of some 200 on Earth, spend even 1 percent what the U.S. does. Of those 29, a full 26 are U.S. weapons customers. Many of those receive free U.S. weapons and/or training and/or have U.S. bases in their countries.

Only one non-ally, non-weapons customer (albeit a collaborator in bioweapons research labs) spends over 10% what the U.S. does, namely China, which was at 37% of U.S. spending in 2021 and likely about the same now despite the highly horrifying increases widely reported in the U.S. media and on the floor of Congress. (That’s not considering weapons for Ukraine and various other U.S. expenses.) While the U.S. has planted military bases around Russia and China, neither has a military base anywhere near the United States, and neither has threatened the United States. Now, if you don’t want to fill the globe with U.S. weaponry and provoke Russia and China on their borders, the New York Times has some additional lies for you: “Defense spending is about as pure an application of a domestic industrial policy — with thousands of good-paying, high-skilled manufacturing jobs — as any other high-tech sector.”

No, it is not. Just about any other way of spending public dollars, or even not taxing them in the first place, produces more and better jobs. Here’s a doozie: “Liberals also used to be hostile to the military on the assumption that it skewed right wing, but that’s a harder argument to make when the right is complaining about a ‘woke military.’” What in the world would it mean to oppose organized mass murder because it skews right wing? What the hell else could it skew? I oppose militarism because it kills, destroys, damages the Earth, drives homelessness and illness and poverty, prevents global cooperation, tears down the rule of law, prevents self-governance, produces the dumbest pages of the New York Times, fuels bigotry, and militarizes police, and because there are better ways to resolve disputes and to resist the militarism of others. I’m not going to start cheering for mass killings because some general doesn’t hate enough groups.

Then there’s this lie: “The Biden administration touts the size of its $842 billion budget request, and in nominal terms it’s the largest ever. But that fails to account for inflation.” If you look at U.S. military spending according to SIPRI in constant 2021 dollars from 1949 to now (all the years they provide, with their calculation adjusting for inflation), Obama’s 2011 record will probably fall this year. If you look at actual numbers, not adjusting for inflation, Biden has set a new record each year. If you add in the free weapons for Ukraine, then, even adjusting for inflation, the record fell this past year and will probably be broken again in the coming year.

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How to kill a brand.

Anheuser-Busch Loses $6BN In Six Days After Bud Light Trans Ad Campaign (ZH)

After reaching a three-year high of $66.73 per share, Bud Light parent company Anheuser Busch Inbev lost more than $6 billion in market cap since announcing its partnership with 26-year-old transgender ‘influencer’ Dylan Mulvaney on April 2, as bar owners and distributors report a sharp decline in Bud Light sales over the past week. The company’s market cap fell as low as $125.7 billion, down from $132.8 billion six days ago, a drop of more than five-percent. Meanwhile competitor Molson Coors (TAP) saw $350 million added to its market cap over the last week. Bud Light’s partnership with Mulvaney included custom cans featuring his face and pro-LGBTQ language to commemorate the biological male’s ‘being a woman’ for over a year.


The ad campaign kicked off with naked Mulvaney drinking Bud Light in a bathtub. And while Anheuser-Busch issued a statement in support of Mulvaney, saying it “works with hundreds of influencers across our brands as one of many ways to authentically connect with audiences across various demographics,” the Daily Wire reports that company executives had no idea about the ad campaign. “No one at the senior level” of the company was aware of Bud Light’s polarizing partnership with Dylan Mulvaney, sources close to the situation claim. The company is also allegedly pausing its marketing efforts and scrambling to implement a more “robust” process for evaluating future influencer partnerships.

“No one at a senior level was aware this was happening,” said one source, who was granted anonymity to discuss sensitive internal discussions. “Some low-level marketing staffer who helps manage the hundreds of influencer engagements they do must have thought it was no big deal. Obviously it was, and it’s a shame because they have a well-earned reputation for just being America’s beer — not a political company. It was a mistake.” A second source also claimed that a lower level employee had made the decision to include Mulvaney in the campaign, a move that appears to have cost the company $5 billion in market value. The backlash to the iconic American beer brand has been so intense that a Budweiser distributor in Missouri canceled an event with the company’s famous Clydesdale horses because everything was “still sensitive” over the matter.” -Daily Wire

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Goats on trees
https://twitter.com/i/status/1646533792495206403

 

 


An albino tree is unable to produce chlorophyll & survives by obtaining sugar through neighboring trees’ roots

 

 

 

 

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Mar 312023
 
 March 31, 2023  Posted by at 9:12 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  54 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Dora Maar au chat 1941

 

NYT: Donald Trump Has Been Indicted (Techno Fog)
The Impact of Sanctions on the De-Dollarization of Int’l Trade (Gonzalo Lira)
Saudi Arabia Makes Move Towards Russia-China Bloc (RT)
Brazil and China Sign Pact To Abandon Dollar (RT)
Russia, China Have To Take Measures To Protect Relations – Zakharova (TASS)
Beijing Demands That US Stop Provoking China (TASS)
Senior Orthodox Bishop Invokes Woe On Zelensky (RT)
Kiev Demands Cut Of Western ‘War Profits’ – Politico (RT)
Kuleba: If US Stops Supporting Ukraine, World Order Will Collapse (Az.)
Ukraine’s Military Losing 500 Troops Daily Near Bakhmut – LPR (TASS)
Russian General Staff Says No Plans To Hold Second Wave Of Mobilization (TASS)
Russian Central Bank Reveals How It Braced For Western Dollar Grab (RT)
London Totally Ruined Architecture Of Relations With Moscow – Ambassador (TASS)
The Most Dangerous International Treaty Ever Proposed (Kingsley)
Guide to Understanding the Hoax of the Century (Siegel)

 

 

 

 

 

 

PCR

Hoeg

 

 

 

 

Jordan Peterson
https://twitter.com/i/status/1641206079844483073

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How much longer will the States remain United?

NYT: Donald Trump Has Been Indicted (Techno Fog)

Breaking news from the New York Times today: “A Manhattan grand jury voted to indict Donald J. Trump on Thursday for his role in paying hush money to a porn star, according to four people with knowledge of the matter, a historic development that will shake up the 2024 presidential race and forever mark him as the nation’s first former president to face criminal charges. The felony indictment, filed under seal by the Manhattan district attorney’s office, will likely be announced in the coming days. By then, prosecutors working for the district attorney, Alvin L. Bragg, will have asked Mr. Trump to surrender and to face arraignment on charges that remain unknown for now.”


A felony indictment. We’ll have more information and more analysis after the indictment is unsealed. But as we stated yesterday regarding the reported “delays” and the potential charges: “In New York, the falsification of business records is a misdemeanor that is subject to a two-year statute of limitations. Bragg, however, is supposedly pursuing felony charges against Trump for falsifying business records to conceal federal campaign finance violations. The felony has a five-year statute of limitations, one which Bragg can manipulate to perhaps apply to Trump.” The indictment is an absolute scandal, the banana republic on parade, the prosecutor using the weapons of his office to attack his political opponent.

Whitlock

Bragg and his predecessor’s slow-walking of the investigation, with its inception by Manhattan DA goes back to 2019, evidences both the dubious nature of the case against Trump and the political motivations for prosecuting Trump. Theoretically, this should be a simple case. Yet the investigation went on for nearly five years, despite what they’ve possessed: overzealous prosecutors who wanted to charge Trump with racketeering, the cooperating witnesses, the likely millions of pages of materials from the Trump Organization. Now suddenly, the insanely pro-criminal Manhattan DA, who demanded his prosecutors reduce charges for violent criminals, is prioritizing law and order. It’s hard to believe there are legitimate reasons – for prosecutors, that means seeking justice – for that transformation. Why bring the case now? It’s the start of the 2024 presidential campaign season.


[..] Don’t be surprised if the trial date is set for the first half of 2024. And don’t understate the danger to Trump, who will face a jury of Biden voters. Biden won Manhattan 86.7% to 12.3% according to the New York Times. The jury of Trump’s peers will be friendly to the prosecution. That’s all the Manhattan DA might need to secure a conviction. Trump could very well win on appeal but the damage – which carries national repercussions – might already have been done. And that’s the whole point of this dirty scheme.

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Twitter thread. Russian sanctions drive countries away from the dollar.

The Impact of Sanctions on the De-Dollarization of Int’l Trade (Gonzalo Lira)

The Russian sanctions have caused a worldwide de-dollarization, as countries are unable to use dollars to buy essential commodities from Russia. This has led to countries signing treaties to trade in yuan, as it is a more reliable currency. This de-dollarization has caused a decrease in demand for dollars overseas, leading to American domestic inflation and an inability to continue piling on debt, which will ultimately lead to dollar hyperinflation. Why are so many countries all of a sudden turning to the yuan to buy their essential commodities? Why is the world de-dollarizing so quickly? Simple — the Russian sanctions.

Russia is the biggest single commodity producer in the world — they have oil AND gas AND agro AND minerals AND anything else. But because of the sanctions, Russia CANNOT take dollars (or euros) for sales of their commodities. First, the sanctions disconnected Russia from SWIFT, meaning Russians can’t pay for things they would want to buy with dollars. So why would Russia take dollars for their commodities — if they can’t buy stuff with those dollars. Plus their dollar assets get confiscated in the West. So why hold dollars, and dollar assets to park them in, if they will be stolen? So because of sanctions, Russia has been FORCED to de-dollarize. Russia didn’t want to de-dollarize — they were obliged. By the West. But Russia still has to trade, because it still has to acquire things it cannot produce at home, and still has a surplus of commodities with which to acquire these foreign goods.

Apart from the West, Russia’s major trading partners are China and India. So it makes sense for Russia to sell its commodities in yuan and rupees: Sell oil/agro/gas in yuan, and buy Chinese goods with those yuan. Same with India. But why are OTHER countries signing treaties to trade in yuan, like France and Brazil in the last few days? They’re getting ahead of the curve. As more commodities trading takes place in yuan and rupees, the more demand for those currencies. Hence it becomes smart to cut a deal with China NOW — to fix an exchange rate of yuan. In essence, these deals are longs on the yuan. The effect is, these trade deals eventually lead to more de-dollarization—which becomes a self-reinforcing cycle, as dollars become less valuable (because they can buy less commodities) so more countries want yuan, leading to more de-dollarization, leading to a weaker dollar.

All this leads to the collapse of the dollar into hyperinflation. The dollar was valuable BECAUSE it was the currency in international commodities trade, which created the demand for dollars and dollar assets outside the US — thereby financing the enormous American debts. With trade de-dollarization, there’s no longer as much demand for dollars overseas, leading to American domestic inflation and an inability to continue piling on debt. Ultimately, the Federal Reserve will be forced to simply print — which will lead to dollar hyperinflation. BTW, Russia didn’t cause this. The sanctions which triggered this worldwide de-dollarization was just the final straw. It didn’t help that American leadership seems capricious and hysterical, making other countries very nervous that they might be sanctioned too.

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Minister of Foreign Affairs of South Africa, Naledi Pandor: “Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Algeria, Argentina, Mexico and Nigeria want to join BRICS.”

Saudi Arabia Makes Move Towards Russia-China Bloc (RT)

King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud has signed the documents granting Saudi Arabia the status of “dialog partner” with the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) – the political, economic and security bloc currently chaired by China. The king signed off on the memorandum of understanding at the cabinet meeting on Tuesday, held at the al-Salam Palace in Jeddah, the Saudi Press Agency reported. In addition to formalizing the partnership, King Salman also approved the technical and vocational training with China. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman thanked Beijing for mediating the talks with Iran, which culminated in the re-establishment of “good neighborly relations” earlier this month. The Saudi state agency also said that Iran was set to join the bloc “soon.” Tehran had applied for membership in 2021.


The SCO was created in 2001 by Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan. It has since expanded to India, Uzbekistan, and Pakistan as full members. The status of dialog partner was created in 2008, and includes Armenia, Azerbaijan, Cambodia, Egypt, Nepal, Qatar, Sri Lanka and Türkiye. The bloc initially focused on security concerns, primarily terrorism, separatism and extremism. It has an agreement with the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) on jointly addressing security, crime and drug trafficking. Over the years, it began fostering cooperation in matters of trade, economics, and culture as well. In addition to taking a step closer to the SCO, Saudi Arabia is reportedly interested in joining the BRICS group – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – Russia’s ambassador to the kingdom, Sergey Kozlov, said in February.

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“25 countries are already making settlements with China in yuan.”

Brazil and China Sign Pact To Abandon Dollar (RT)

Beijing and Brasilia have signed an agreement on trade in mutual currencies, abandoning the US dollar as an intermediary, and are also planning to expand cooperation in the field of food and minerals. According to media reports, the deal will enable the two BRICS members to conduct their massive trade and financial transactions directly, exchanging renminbi for real and vice versa instead of using the greenback for settlements. “The expectation is that this will reduce costs… promote even greater bilateral trade and facilitate investment,” AFP quoted the Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency as saying on Wednesday. The countries also reportedly announced the creation of a clearinghouse that will provide settlements without the use of the US dollar, as well as lending in national currencies.


The move is aimed at facilitating and reducing the cost of transactions between the sides, and getting rid of dollar dependence in bilateral relations. The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) announced earlier that such arrangements will boost the usage of the renminbi for cross-border transactions between enterprises and financial institutions in the two countries, and further facilitate bilateral trade and investment. China has been Brazil’s largest trading partner for more than a decade, with bilateral trade hitting a record $150 billion last year. According to the Secretary for International Affairs at the Ministry of Finance of Brazil, Tatiana Rosito, 25 countries are already making settlements with China in yuan.

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“..both sides view the strengthening of relations as a “natural process,..

Russia, China Have To Take Measures To Protect Relations – Zakharova (TASS)

Moscow and Beijing have to take adequate measures in current geopolitical circumstances in order to protect their multifaceted cooperation from the harmful effect of illegal unilateral sanctions, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said during a briefing Thursday. “In current geopolitical circumstances, Moscow and Beijing have to take adequate measures in order to protect the positive groundwork of multifaceted cooperation, which took many years to accumulate, from the harmful effect of illegal unilateral sanctions,” the diplomat noted.


Meanwhile, the spokeswoman underscored, both sides view the strengthening of relations as a “natural process,” defined by long-standing ties and geographical proximity. “Unlike the westerners, we seek to build cooperation with external partners exclusively based on principles of equality, mutual consideration of each other’s interests, instead of building some coalition or some exclusive clubs with an ‘anti-‘ prefix,” Zakharova noted.

Lavrov
https://twitter.com/i/status/1641539345101324288

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“The Chinese People’s Liberation Army will take all necessary measures to protect national sovereignty and security and will resolutely defend peace and stability in the South China Sea..”

Beijing Demands That US Stop Provoking China (TASS)

The US Armed Forces must stop provoking China in the South China Sea, otherwise they will bear responsibility for any potential incidents, Chinese Defense Ministry Spokesman Tan Kefei warned on Thursday. The comment was Tan’s response to a US Navy vessel that allegedly sailed near the China-controlled Paracel Islands in the South China Sea. “We sternly demand that the United States immediately stop such provocations, otherwise it will bear full responsibility for all the serious consequences of their causing a potential incident,” the Chinese Defense Ministry quoted him as saying on WeChat. “The Chinese People’s Liberation Army will take all necessary measures to protect national sovereignty and security and will resolutely defend peace and stability in the South China Sea,” Tan assured.


The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Milius passed near the Paracel Islands last Friday. China’s top brass claimed that the US warship did this without the Chinese government’s permission and had violated China’s sovereignty. The US 7th Fleet replied by saying in a news release that the US destroyer had acted in line with international law, while conducting a freedom of navigation operation (FONOP). Beijing has disputed the territorial jurisdiction of some islands in the South China Sea where large hydrocarbon reserves were found with Brunei, Vietnam, Malaysia. The most disputed territories are the Xisha Islands, also known as the Paracel Islands, the Nansha or Spratly Islands and Huangyan Island (Scarborough Reef).

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“You’ll disappear like dew in the sun, because all who take up the sword will perish by the sword..”

Senior Orthodox Bishop Invokes Woe On Zelensky (RT)

A senior bishop in the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UOC) has issued a strongly-worded rebuke to President Vladimir Zelensky over his role in a crackdown that the country’s largest religious denomination is currently facing. “I am telling you, Mr President, and your entire pack, that our tears will not fall to the ground, but on your head,” Metropolitan Pavel said in a video address on Wednesday. “You think today that after taking power on our backs, [based] on our wishes, you can treat us like that. Our Lord will not forgive this action, neither to you nor to your family,” the bishop warned. Pavel heads the Kiev Pechersk Lavra, the largest Orthodox monastery in the country. The Ukrainian ministry of culture denied the UOC a renewal of tenancy in the property, which means that some 220 monks living there would be “kicked out to the streets,” as Pavel described it.

The deadline for the expulsion comes this week. The bishop blasted the president for refusing to meet senior UOC clerics to discuss the situation. This was particularly hypocritical, he remarked, considering that, as a presidential candidate, Zelensky had sought and received the blessing to run for office from Metropolitan Onufry, the Church leader. “You have failed to stop the culture minister, who is possessed by hateful malice and devilish fury. This means he is acting with your permission; Woe to you, have fear,”the bishop said. The minister, Aleksandr Tkachenko, has said that UOC monks could stay at Lavra if they agreed to defect to the Orthodox Church of Ukraine (OCU), a rival schismatic organization backed by Kiev.

The OCU received recognition as a legitimate church in 2019 from the Constantinople Patriarchate, causing a major schism among the Orthodox faithful of the world. Metropolitan Pavel has also accused Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople of having given impetus to the crackdown with this move. “Woe and shame on you, so-called patriarch [Bartholomew], because everything done today is done with your ill-fated and evil blessing,” he said. The bishop also likened the current detractors of the UOC to the Bolshevik and communist leaders, who’d cracked down on all religions when they were in power. He expressed faith that his church will survive the new period of suppression, just like it had the previous one. “You’ll disappear like dew in the sun, because all who take up the sword will perish by the sword,” he said, quoting in the same sentence from the Ukrainian national anthem and from the Gospels.

Pavel

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“..the record profits had been achieved purely because of the conflict in his country..”

Kiev Demands Cut Of Western ‘War Profits’ – Politico (RT)

Major oil companies have made record profits as a result of the conflict in Ukraine and should pay to rebuild the country’s war-torn infrastructure, Ukrainian Minister of Energy German Galushchenko said on Wednesday in an interview with Politico. According to Galushchenko, oil and gas majors have generated windfall profits of more than $200 billion due to wild swings in global energy prices, and should transfer some of those funds to Ukraine. Western sanctions imposed on Russia over the past year in response to Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine have sent energy prices soaring. In 2022, oil majors Shell, BP, Exxon Mobil, Chevron, and TotalEnergies posted a combined profit of $196.3 billion, marking an all-time high for the industry.


“I think it would be fair to share this money with Ukraine. I mean, to help us to restore, to rebuild the energy sector,” Galushchenko said on a visit to Brussels, adding that the record profits had been achieved purely because of the conflict in his country. According to the latest assessment by the Ukrainian government, the World Bank, the European Commission, and the UN, the estimated cost of the country’s reconstruction and recovery will be over $400 billion. The Ukrainian energy minister also called on the West to take further steps to plug sanctions loopholes that allow Russian energy producers to continue exports.

IAEA
https://twitter.com/i/status/1641206842415108098

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And the sun will stop shining too. Insert biblical reference.

Kuleba: If US Stops Supporting Ukraine, World Order Will Collapse (Az.)

If support for Ukraine does not continue after the US presidential elections next year, world order and security will collapse, said the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, Dmytro Kuleba, Report informs via RBC-Ukraine. He said the matter is not only about the fate of Ukraine: “We must also consider international security. If the support for Ukraine stops, the countries will know that they can invade the neighboring country. If so, world security will collapse.”

Austria

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“It continues replenishing the losses that the Ukrainian army is suffering..”

Ukraine’s Military Losing 500 Troops Daily Near Bakhmut – LPR (TASS)

The Ukrainian military is daily losing 500 fighters in the area of Artyomovsk (called Bakhmut in Ukraine), Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) people’s militia retired Lieutenant-Colonel Andrey Marochko said on Thursday. “In my estimates, about 500 personnel daily [as casualties] there [in the Artyomovsk area]. These are both sanitary and irretrievable losses,” the retired officer said in a live broadcast on Komsomolskaya Pravda radio. The Ukrainian military experiences a shortage of fighters due to huge casualties and continues replenishing its troops, Marochko said. “It continues replenishing the losses that the Ukrainian army is suffering,” the retired officer said. Marochko told TASS on March 27 that the Ukrainian military had lost as many as 1,500 soldiers in battles with Russian forces in the Artyomovsk area over the week.


Artyomovsk is located on the Kiev-controlled part of the Donetsk People’s Republic and is a major transportation hub for the Ukrainian army’s supplies in Donbass. Fierce fighting for the city is underway. Yan Gagin, military-political expert and adviser to the acting head of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), said on March 22 that the city had been practically sealed off by Russian forces and all approaches to Artyomovsk were under Russian artillery control. He earlier said that Russian forces controlled about 70% of the city. Acting DPR Head Denis Pushilin has repeatedly said that there is no evidence of the Ukrainian army’s plans to leave Artyomovsk. Meanwhile, Kiev claims that the city’s defense will be bolstered. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky earlier said that Ukrainian troops would not surrender Artyomovsk and would fight for it as long as they could.

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..”the number of citizens who decided to join the Russian armed forces under the enlistment contract has increased significantly as of lately.”

Russian General Staff Says No Plans To Hold Second Wave Of Mobilization (TASS)

The Russian General Staff is not planning to hold the second wave of mobilization, because the current number of volunteers and servicemen is sufficient for fulfilling the tasks of the special operation, said Rear Adm. Vladimir Tsimlyansky, the head of the Russian General Staff’s main organization and mobilization department. “I would like to assure you that the General Staff’s plans do not include the second wave of mobilization. The current number of conscripts and people who volunteered to participate in the [special] operation is sufficient for fulfilling the objectives,” he said during a briefing devoted to Russia’s spring draft. In his words “the number of citizens who decided to join the Russian armed forces under the enlistment contract has increased significantly as of lately.” This year’s spring draft in Russia will be held during its usual timeframe of April 1 – July 15 for a total of 147,000 Russians aged between 18 and 27.

Polish TV

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The need for dollars is already shrinking.

Russian Central Bank Reveals How It Braced For Western Dollar Grab (RT)

The Bank of Russia had been preparing for an escalation of Western sanctions since 2014 and was beefing up additional funds as a hedge against future restrictions on its foreign exchange reserves, the regulator revealed on Wednesday. Amid “increasing geopolitical risks” the central bank ramped up investments in assets “that cannot be blocked by unfriendly nations”and transferred part of its reserves to gold, Chinese yuan and foreign currency in cash, the regulator announced in its annual report. The central bank managed to stash billions of imported dollars “in volumes limited by logistics capabilities,” the report said without specifying the amount of accumulated funds. Alternative reserves in dollars and gold bars have been stockpiled in the vaults of the Bank of Russia.

“This safety cushion was created in the form of alternative reserves – less liquid and convenient in everyday life, but more reliable in the face of a tough geopolitical scenario,” the regulator explained. It was impossible to abandon reserves in dollars and euros, as these currencies were used for settlements in international trade as well as in the domestic financial sector, the central bank added. “Therefore the structure of foreign exchange reserves needed to take into account the needs of citizens and businesses,” the regulator concluded. The central bank could have “unloaded” part of this money to banks during the first wave of Western sanctions to stabilize Russia’s banking system and offset the withdrawal of dollars and euros by “panicking depositors,”the chief analyst from Ingosstrakh-Investment, Viktor Tunyov, believes.

According to some estimates, last year almost $20 billion was withdrawn by depositors from the country’s second largest bank, VTB, alone. In 2022, Russia was hit by sweeping Western economic sanctions, which included measures to cut the Russian central bank off from the international financial system, while around $300 billion of the bank’s foreign reserves were frozen. Moscow has criticized the seizure of its assets, saying it constitutes theft.

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“Because it leads to wrong decisions, to the wrong decision-making process. They need to hear what we say, our arguments, then they will have a broader perception of the real state of affairs..”

London Totally Ruined Architecture Of Relations With Moscow – Ambassador (TASS)

Russia and the UK have no political dialogue after London completely ruined the architecture of relations between the countries, Russian Ambassador to the UK Andrey Kelin said in an interview with RTVI television on Thursday. “We now in principle have no political communication, no political dialogue, unlike it was with the UK in the past, about key aspects of international affairs,” he said. The ambassador said “London ruined the entire architecture of bilateral relations.” “It broke it down in the economic area, the humanitarian area, the scientific one, the educational one and the political one first of all. It was purely its initiative – the destruction of that architecture,” Kelin went on to say.


“We are in contact with the Foreign Office. Russian diplomats, including the ambassador of the Russian Federation, are forbidden from going to parliament. This is so by a decision of the parliament’s speaker. This is very bad, because the British people, British officials, British lawmakers, they remain uninformed about the other side, uninformed about the situation as a whole,” the ambassador said. According to Kelin, this is a “categorical mistake.” “Because it leads to wrong decisions, to the wrong decision-making process. They need to hear what we say, our arguments, then they will have a broader perception of the real state of affairs,” Kelin said.

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“..there would be no requirement for an “actual” health emergency [..] it would be sufficient for the DG, acting on his or her discretion, to have identified the mere “potential” for such an event.::

The Most Dangerous International Treaty Ever Proposed (Kingsley)

Human history is a story of forgotten lessons. Despite the catastrophic collapse of European democracy in the 1930s, it appears that the tale of the twentieth century – in which citizens, cowed by existential threats, acquiesced in the rejection of liberty and truth in favour of obedience and propaganda, whilst allowing despotic leaders to seize ever more absolutist powers – is perilously close to being forgotten. Nowhere is this more evident than in relation to the apparent nonchalance which has greeted two international legal agreements currently working their way through the World Health Organisation: a new pandemic treaty, and amendments to the 2005 International Health Regulations, both due to be put before the governing body of the WHO, the World Health Assembly, in May next year.

As concerned scholars and jurists have detailed, these agreements threaten to fundamentally reshape the relationship between the WHO, national governments, and individuals. They would hardwire into international law a top-down supranational approach to public health in which the WHO, acting in some cases via the sole discretion of one individual, its Director General (DG), would be empowered to impose sweeping, legally binding directions on member states and their citizens, ranging from mandating financial contributions by individual states; to requiring the manufacture and international sharing of vaccines and other health products; to requiring the surrender of intellectual property rights; overriding national safety approval processes for vaccines, gene-based therapies, medical devices and diagnostics; and imposing national, regional and global quarantines preventing citizens from traveling and mandating medical examinations and treatments.

A global system for digital ‘health certificates’ for verification of vaccine status or test results would be routinised, and a bio-surveillance network whose purpose would be to identify viruses and variants of concern – and to monitor national compliance with WHO policy directives in the event of them – would be embedded and expanded. For any of these sweeping powers to be invoked, there would be no requirement for an “actual” health emergency in which people are suffering measurable harm; instead it would be sufficient for the DG, acting on his or her discretion, to have identified the mere “potential” for such an event.

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Fighting disinformation with ….disinformation. Long article.

Guide to Understanding the Hoax of the Century (Siegel)

No one thought Trump was a normal politician. Being an ogre, Trump horrified millions of Americans who felt a personal betrayal in the possibility that he would occupy the same office held by George Washington and Abe Lincoln. Trump also threatened the business interests of the most powerful sectors of society. It was the latter offense, rather than his putative racism or flagrant un-presidentialness, that sent the ruling class into a state of apoplexy. Given his focus in office on lowering the corporate tax rate, it’s easy to forget that Republican officials and the party’s donor class saw Trump as a dangerous radical who threatened their business ties with China, their access to cheap imported labor, and the lucrative business of constant war. But, indeed, that is how they saw him, as reflected in the unprecedented response to Trump’s candidacy recorded by The Wall Street Journal in September 2016:

“No chief executive at the nation’s 100 largest companies had donated to Republican Donald Trump’s presidential campaign through August, a sharp reversal from 2012, when nearly a third of the CEOs of Fortune 100 companies supported GOP nominee Mitt Romney.” The phenomenon was not unique to Trump. Bernie Sanders, the left-wing populist candidate in 2016, was also seen as a dangerous threat by the ruling class. But whereas the Democrats successfully sabotaged Sanders, Trump made it past his party’s gatekeepers, which meant that he had to be dealt with by other means. Two days after Trump took office, a smirking Senator Chuck Schumer told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow that it was “really dumb” of the new president to get on the bad side of the security agencies that were supposed to work for him: “Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday of getting back at you.”

Trump had used sites like Twitter to bypass his party’s elites and connect directly with his supporters. Therefore, to cripple the new president and ensure that no one like him could ever come to power again, the intel agencies had to break the independence of the social media platforms. Conveniently, it was the same lesson that many intelligence and defense officials had drawn from the ISIS and Russian campaigns of 2014—namely, that social media was too powerful to be left outside of state control—only applied to domestic politics, which meant the agencies would now have help from politicians who stood to benefit from the effort.

Immediately after the election, Hillary Clinton started blaming Facebook for her loss. Until this point, Facebook and Twitter had tried to remain above the political fray, fearful of jeopardizing potential profits by alienating either party. But now a profound change occurred, as the operation behind the Clinton campaign reoriented itself not simply to reform the social media platforms, but to conquer them. The lesson they took from Trump’s victory was that Facebook and Twitter—more than Michigan and Florida—were the critical battlegrounds where political contests were won or lost. “Many of us are beginning to talk about what a big problem this is,” Clinton’s chief digital strategist Teddy Goff told Politico the week after the election, referring to Facebook’s alleged role in boosting Russian disinformation that helped Trump. “Both from the campaign and from the administration, and just sort of broader Obama orbit…this is one of the things we would like to take on post-election,” Goff said.

Read more …

 

 

 

 

Fact checkers
https://twitter.com/i/status/1641376196758847489

 

 

 

 

Candace

 

 

Fox
https://twitter.com/i/status/1641123059011817472

 

 


China High Speed Trains

 

 

Lions
https://twitter.com/i/status/1641192412356681731

 

 

Chromatophores

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Jan 062023
 


Dorothea Lange One nation indivisible. San Francisco 1942

 

Putin Calls for Ceasefire, Ukraine Rejects, Biden Pushes for More War (Celente)
White House Rejects Putin’s Christmas Truce As But A “Cynical Ploy” (ZH)
Ukraine Warns Germany Of ‘Russians Outside Berlin’ (RT)
US Won’t Fulfill Ukrainian Request – WaPo (RT)
2022: The World As We Knew It Ended. Decades Of Conflict Lie Ahead (Timofeev)
Russian “New Mobilization Process” For Major Offensive Imminent? (ZH)
Arrest Of Russian Outlet’s Journalist Is Blow To Press Freedom – Moscow (RT)
The Coup We Never Knew (Hanson)
The Ginni Thomas Investigation Ends Without a Mention in J6 Report (Turley)
Trump Announces Plan To Destroy The Drug Cartels With The US Military (PM)
Sotomayor Felt “Sense of Despair” Because Babies Would be Protected (LN)
These Doctors Pushed Masking, Lockdowns on Twitter. But They Don’t Exist (SFS)
Swiss Organization To Provide Safe Blood Transfusions From Unvaxxed (NN)
What Caused Damar Hamlin’s Cardiac Arrest? Experts Weigh In (CHD)

 

 

 

 

Have the vaccines saved lives?

 

 

 

 

 

 

EV

 

 

 

 

 

 

“..the West wants to destroy Russia, so it provided Ukraine with more weapons than it could ever imagine and Zelensky’s goals grew..”

Putin Calls for Ceasefire, Ukraine Rejects, Biden Pushes for More War (Celente)

Ukraine rejected Russian President Vladimir Putin’s call for a unilateral, 36-hour ceasefire to mark the celebration of Orthodox Christmas, calling Putin “hypocritical” for even suggesting laying down arms, albeit briefly. Mikhailo Podolyak, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s top adviser, took to Twitter and said Russian troops must withdraw from all occupied territories, and only then will they have a “temporary truce.” “Keep hypocrisy to yourself,” he concluded. Reuters reported that the Kremlin released the statement from Putin calling for the truce after a conversation with Patriarch Kirill of Moscow, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church.

“Proceeding from the fact that a large number of citizens professing Orthodoxy live in the areas of hostilities, we call on the Ukrainian side to declare a ceasefire and allow them to attend services on Christmas Eve, as well as on Christmas Day,” Putin said, according to the report. Needless to say, Washington continued to promote war. President Joe Biden said the ceasefire was an effort by Putin to find breathing room. “He was ready to bomb hospitals and nurseries and churches” on 25 December and on New Year’s Day. I think he’s trying to find some oxygen,” he said. Annalena Baerbock, the German foreign minister, said if Putin was sincere with his peace goals, he would withdraw troops. “A so-called ceasefire brings neither freedom nor security to people living in daily fear under Russian occupation,” Baerbock tweeted, according to Al Jazeera.

Ukraine’s position has been clear since the outbreak of war: all Russian troops must leave the country before any negotiated settlement can occur. But the West wants to destroy Russia, so it provided Ukraine with more weapons than it could ever imagine and Zelensky’s goals grew. Kyiv now wants Crimea and said it will not negotiate until Russian leaders face war-crime trials, which will never happen. Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish president, spoke with Putin on the phone Thursday and called for the ceasefire. He said “calls for peace and negotiations should be supported by a unilateral ceasefire and a vision for a fair solution.” Putin, again, indicated that he is willing to negotiate for peace, but he will not part with any new territory.

Zelensky, meanwhile, warned that he expects a major Russian offensive after Putin mobilized hundreds of thousands of troops. “We have no doubt that the current masters of Russia will throw everything they have left and everyone they can muster to try to turn the tide of the war and at least postpone their defeat,” Zelensky said. “We have to disrupt this Russian scenario. We are preparing for this. The terrorists must lose.”

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NATO wants to keep up the fight.

White House Rejects Putin’s Christmas Truce As But A “Cynical Ploy” (ZH)

Update(1553ET): The White House has rejected Putin’s call for a Christmas truce in Ukraine. The Russian leader earlier in the day ordered a unilateral 36-hour ceasefire for his forces starting Friday, which will still apparently be in effect despite Ukraine rejecting it. Presumably Russian forces have been told to cease firing along the line of contact starting on Orthodox Christmas Eve day (Friday), unless they are fired upon from the Ukrainian side. The Biden administration cast it as a “cynical ploy” in order for Russian forces to regroup. Biden himself said the ceasefire proposal isn’t “serious” – as The Hill cites of the president’s words: President Biden said Thursday that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s call for a temporary, Christmas ceasefire is an effort to “find some oxygen,” dismissing that the Kremlin is serious about finding an off ramp for its assault against Ukraine.

The president said he was “reluctant to respond to anything Putin says,” but characterized the Kremlin as cynically attacking civilians over the December holidays. “He was ready to bomb hospitals and nurseries and church’s on the 25th and New Years — I mean, I think he’s trying to find some oxygen,” Biden added. At the State Department, spokesman Ned Price called Putin’s Christmas truce declaration a “cynical ploy… to rest, to refit, to regroup, and ultimately to re-attack, to re-attack with potentially even more vengeance, even more brutality, even more lethality, if they had their way.”

The majority of the populations in both countries are adherents of the Orthodox Church, with Russian and Ukrainian Orthodox Christians traditionally celebrating Christmas on Jan. 7th. Germany was earlier in the day among the first Western countries to reject Putin’s announcement as inauthentic. And yet, ironically enough, calls have rang out from the West for months since the start of the conflict for Russian troops to cease fighting. One would think that any pause in fighting, however temporary, would be welcomed by the West – but alas not.

Update (1109ET): Within a mere hour after President Putin declared there would be a 36-hour ceasefire for all Russian forces along the line of contact in observation of Orthodox Christmas, Zelensky’s office has issued a firm rejection, calling it “hypocrisy” and demanding that all Russian troops must leave occupied territory immediately. Zelensky advisor Mykhailo Podolyak announced on Twitter, that Russian forces… must leave the occupied territories – only then will it have a “temporary truce”. Keep hypocrisy to yourself. He had earlier responded to Russian Orthodox Church leader Patriarch Kirill by calling the proposed Christmas ceasefire “a trap”. Ukrainian officials are also calling this a ploy for Russian forces to regroup and to take the momentum out of the Ukrainian army counteroffensive, which has been making some gains of late.

Update (1015ET): Shortly after Erdogan spoke with Putin this morning, the Russian leader has ordered a temporary cease-fire in Ukraine Friday and Saturday to mark Orthodox Christmas. The statement from the Kremlin cites earlier appeal from Patriarch Kirill for ceasefire over the holiday. Russian Orthodox Church leader Patriarch Kirill had previously said in a statement posted to the church’s official website: “I, Kirill, Patriarch of Moscow and of all Rus, appeal to all parties involved in the internecine conflict with a call to cease fire and establish a Christmas truce from 12:00 on January 6 to 00:00 on January 7 so that Orthodox people can attend services on Christmas Eve and on the day of the Nativity of Christ.” [..] Russian and Ukrainian Orthodox Christians celebrate Christmas on Jan. 7th, and is a major holiday just as in the West during December (the Orthodox Church’s Julian calendar December 25 falls on January 7 on the West’s Gregorian calendar).

Bloomberg has meanwhile hinted at a negative response from Ukrainian leaders, given their initial reaction to Patriarch Kirill’s Christmas truce call: Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his forces to cease fighting in Ukraine for 36 hours starting Friday at noon, Moscow time, in what appeared to be a rare sign of conciliation in an invasion that’s heading for its second year. The Kremlin said Putin gave the order Thursday for Russian Orthodox Christmas. It follows an appeal by the patriarch of that church, which has close ties to the Kremlin. Ukrainian officials denounced that as a trap. Kyiv has demanded Russia remove its troops from Ukraine as a condition for any ceasefire.

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Almost funny.

Ukraine Warns Germany Of ‘Russians Outside Berlin’ (RT)

Should Germany fail to provide Ukraine with tanks, it will soon have to use them to defend its own capital from advancing Russian troops, Alexey Danilov, the head of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, warned on Wednesday. Speaking to Ukrainian TV, Danilov took a swipe at Germany’s leadership, particularly at Chancellor Olaf Scholz, criticizing him for refusing to send Kiev modern Leopard 2 battle tanks. If Scholz “wants the Germans to deploy German tanks to fight off the Russians outside of Berlin and Stuttgart, he could continue this game, conducting sociological surveys on whether they need to give us tanks or not,” he said. The official also highlighted the significance of the Ukraine conflict for Europe, adding that it poses “huge challenges” to the region.

“Those countries that understand that help us at 150% capacity. Those countries that are slowly wising up about the need to tackle this issue, they also started to act,” Danilov stated. While Berlin has been providing Kiev with large amounts of weaponry, it has been reluctant to supply it with modern Leopard 2 battle tanks. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz had earlier explained that because no other country had made equivalent weaponry available to Ukraine, Berlin should not be the first one to do so. A December YouGov poll also showed that 45% of Germans do not want to send Leopard 2 tanks to Kiev, with another 33% saying they were in favor of such a step. Ukrainian officials have repeatedly voiced discontent over Germany’s stance on the matter, with Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba saying last month that Kiev does not understand why Germany is sending artillery but not heavy armor.

On Monday, Michael Mueller, who sits on the Bundestag’s Foreign Policy Committee, told the German media that Berlin would continue to refrain from any “ill-considered unilateral moves,” especially in the context of arms shipments. Such deliveries are possible only “in coordination with our NATO partners,” he said, adding that the US-led military bloc wants to avoid becoming a direct party to the Ukraine conflict. Moscow has long warned Kiev backers against sending weapons to Ukraine, arguing that it would only prolong the hostilities. President Vladimir Putin also accused the West of turning Ukraine into “a colony,” and using its people as “cannon fodder, a battering ram against Russia.”

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M1 Abrams main battle tank is scrap metal: “..tanks’ heavy fuel consumption and propensity to break down make them unsuitable for the Ukrainian military.”

US Won’t Fulfill Ukrainian Request – WaPo (RT)

The US will not send M1 Abrams main battle tanks to Ukraine, the Washington Post reported on Wednesday, citing officials. Despite repeated requests from the Ukrainian government, no NATO power has donated Western-designed battle tanks thus far. Speaking on the condition of anonymity, the official said that the Abrams tanks’ heavy fuel consumption and propensity to break down make them unsuitable for the Ukrainian military. One of the heaviest main battle tanks in service worldwide, the M1 Abrams weighs in at 60 tons, with the latest M1A2 variant increasing this heft to more than 73 tons. An M1 Abrams tank costs more than $450 per mile in fuel and repairs, according to a 1991 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report adjusted for inflation.

The Abrams’ poor reliability was noted by the GAO. After a decade in service with the US military, the report stated that the average M1 Abrams needs its track replaced after as little as 710 miles, with engines typically suffering catastrophic “blowouts” after 350 hours of operation. However, the US Army insists that the latest M1A2 variant, which rolled off production lines in 2020, “is the most reliable Abrams tank ever produced.” Ukraine has repeatedly requested delivery of the American-made behemoths, portraying them as crucial to its war effort. Mikhail Podoliak, an advisor to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky, put them on his “Christmas wishlist” in a social media post last month, while Zelensky has himself repeatedly asked the US and its allies for tanks since March.

Zelensky and his officials have singled out Germany in particular, asking Berlin for Marder infantry fighting vehicles and Leopard main battle tanks on multiple occasions. Germany has thus far rebuffed these requests, with lawmaker and Bundestag Foreign Policy Committee member Michael Mueller telling reporters this week that sending the tanks could trigger “an escalation that none of us want to imagine.” France on Wednesday became the first NATO member to announce the transfer of Western-made “light tanks” to Ukraine, although the vehicles in question – six-wheeled AMX-10 units – are outdated, and technically closer to armored fighting vehicles than tanks such as the Abrams or Leopard.

The French AMX-10s are similar in weight to the US-made Bradley Fighting Vehicle, with both coming in at less than 30 tons. US President Joe Biden said on Wednesday that the transfer of an unspecified number of Bradleys is currently being discussed in the White House. Russia has repeatedly warned the West against arming Kiev, saying that doing so will only serve to prolong the conflict, and risks making Western nations de-facto participants.

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“..It remains to be seen if the next cycle will not be the last for mankind..”

2022: The World As We Knew It Ended. Decades Of Conflict Lie Ahead (Timofeev)

In 2022, the remnants of the ‘end of history’ era finally became a thing of the past. However, there has not been a return to the Cold War either. Russian policy is mainly concerned about security interests. It is not derived from ideology, although it does include components of the identity of ‘the Russian world’, as well as historical motives for opposing Nazism. Russia does not offer a global ideological alternative comparable to liberalism – nor has China yet taken such initiatives. The end of the ‘end of history’ is notable for several other details. Firstly, a major power has risked giving up the benefits of the ‘global world’ overnight. Historians will argue about whether Moscow anticipated such harsh sanctions and the departure of hundreds of foreign companies so quickly. However, it is clear that Russia is vigorously adapting to the new realities and is in no hurry to return to US-centric globalization.

Secondly, Western countries have embarked on a very tough ‘purge’ of Russian assets abroad. Overnight, their jurisdictions ceased to be ‘safe havens’ where the ‘rule of law’ is followed. Now it is politics that calls the shots and Russia is the only harbor to which its citizens can return to relative peace. Stereotypes about the ‘stability and security’ of the West are breaking down. Of course, they are unlikely to begin a similar purge of other assets there. But looking at the Russians, outside investors are wondering whether they should hedge their risks. Thirdly, it turned out that in the West, they might face not only asset stripping, but outright discrimination on the grounds of nationality. Thousands of Russians ‘fleeing’ the ‘bloody regime’ have suddenly faced rejection and contempt. Others trying to prove that they are even bigger ‘Russophobes’ than their host partners are running ahead of the anti-Russian propaganda train. However, this does not guarantee that the stubborn dogmatists will embrace them.

The conflict between Russia and the West is likely to drag on for decades, regardless of how the conflict in Ukraine ends. In Europe, Russia will play the role of North Korea, while possessing much greater capabilities. Whether Ukraine has the strength, the will, and resources to become a European South Korea is a big question. Conflict between Russia and the West will lead to a strengthening of China’s role as an alternative financial center and source of modernization. A stronger China will only accelerate its rivalry with the US and its allies. The ‘end of history’ has ended with a return to its usual course. One of these is the collapse of the world order as a result of large-scale conflicts between centers of power. It remains to be seen if the next cycle will not be the last for mankind, given the risks of an open military clash between the great powers with a subsequent escalation into full-scale nuclear conflict.

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Ukraine makes up stories and the west duly repeats them.

Russian “New Mobilization Process” For Major Offensive Imminent? (ZH)

Ukraine says it’s bracing for a major new Russian offensive, which will involve a large influx of new ground forces at a time Russian forces are under pressure and reportedly lacking enough manpower to maintain front lines, but did not give a timeline for the expected push. In fresh statements widely circulated Wednesday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Russia is planning a major “new offensive” which will involve a planned “new mobilization processes.” He suggested the new mobilization is imminent given recent Russian battlefield losses in the east, which includes the devastating strike on a barracks in the city of Makiivka, resulting an a huge Russian troop death toll.

“We have no doubt that the current masters of Russia will throw everything they have left and everyone they can muster to try to turn the tide of the war and at least postpone their defeat,” Zelensky said. “We have to disrupt this Russian scenario. We are preparing for this. The terrorists must lose.” Kiev had begun issuing these warnings of a major escalation by Moscow shortly after last month Putin referred to the Ukraine special operation as a “war” for the first time. As the The Hill also details: Some Ukrainian officials also warned last month about a potential new Russian offensive in January or February, including Gen. Valeriy Zaluzhnyi, a top commander in the Ukrainian army who told The Economist that Russia is preparing some 200,000 troops and could have another go at Kyiv.

Previously, Ukraine’s defense minister Oleksii Reznikov also issued a New Year message, and in it appealed to the Russian people, warning that Putin his about to declare martial law and close borders to men, in preparation for a new wave of mobilization. Reznikov called for Russians to resist these efforts and stand for peace in the video address… Within Russia, public opinion appears increasingly divided on how military and Kremlin leadership is executing the war, particularly in the wake of the Makiivka barracks attack, which left up to hundreds of Russian conscripts killed. Hawks within Russia in the meantime have continued pushing for a more muscular escalation in order to achieve the military objectives laid out since the start of the invasion. Others are calling for both sides to implement a Christmas truce this weekend in observation of Orthodox Christmas (Jan.7 according to the Julian calendar).

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“Just last month, Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia protested French President Emmanuel Macron’s proposal to offer Russia security guarantees..”

Arrest Of Russian Outlet’s Journalist Is Blow To Press Freedom – Moscow (RT)

The arrest of Sputnik Lithuania’s editor-in-chief is a violation of international norms of freedom of speech and the rights of journalists, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday. She called on international organizations to react appropriately to Latvia’s “overreach” in arresting Marat Kasem. “Riga has once again demonstrated that for it such values of a democratic society as media pluralism and the rights of journalists are nothing more than empty phrases,” Zakharova said in a statement. Earlier, the spokeswoman shared a video on her Telegram channel of Kasem speaking about the problems he was facing, noting that he had complained for years about pressure and mistreatment at the hands of governments in the Baltic states.

All the international organizations concerned with freedom of speech, who spent years ignoring Kasem’s safety concerns, should “finally justify their existence” and intervene, Zakharova argued. “It is not just a duty, but an obligation of the international community to do everything so these overreaching regimes would return to following the law,” she said. Kasem is a Latvian citizen, but has lived and worked in Moscow for the past several years. He returned to Latvia on family business just before New Year’s Eve. On Thursday, the authorities in Riga ordered his arrest and charged him with espionage and violating EU sanctions against Russia. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years behind bars. His lawyer has not yet been given the case files, and her request to release Kasem on bail has been denied. He is currently being held in Riga’s Central jail.

Moscow has complained about the ongoing persecution of several journalists in Baltic states back in 2021, prior to the conflict in Ukraine escalating. Kasem had been detained in Vilnius and deported from Lithuania as a “threat to national security” in 2019. His colleague Valentin Rozentsov, editor-in-chief of Sputnik Latvia, was detained and interrogated in Riga in 2018. The former Soviet republics have adopted a hardline stance on the conflict in Ukraine. Just last month, Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia protested French President Emmanuel Macron’s proposal to offer Russia security guarantees, and demanded no exemptions on the ban on Russian fertilizer exports, despite EU concerns about potential famine in Africa.

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Lots of things changed and somehow became normal.

The Coup We Never Knew (Hanson)

Did someone or something seize control of the United States? What happened to the U.S. border? Where did it go? Who erased it? Why and how did 5 million people enter our country illegally? Did Congress secretly repeal our immigration laws? Did Joe Biden issue an executive order allowing foreign nationals to walk across the border and reside in the United States as they pleased? Since when did money not have to be paid back? Who insisted that the more dollars the federal government printed, the more prosperity would follow? When did America embrace zero interest? Why do we believe $30 trillion in debt is no big deal? When did clean-burning, cheap, and abundant natural gas become the equivalent to dirty coal?

How did prized natural gas that had granted America’s wishes of energy self-sufficiency, reduced pollution, and inexpensive electricity become almost overnight a pariah fuel whose extraction was a war against nature? Which lawmakers, which laws, which votes of the people declared natural gas development and pipelines near criminal? Was it not against federal law to swarm the homes of Supreme Court justices, to picket and to intimidate their households in efforts to affect their rulings? How then with impunity did bullies surround the homes of Justices Brett Kavanaugh, Samuel Alito, Amy Coney Barrett, Neil Gorsuch, John Roberts, and Clarence Thomas—furious over a court decision on abortion? How could these mobs so easily throng our justices’ homes, with placards declaring “Off with their d—s”?

Since when did Americans create a government Ministry of Truth? And on whose orders did the FBI contract private news organizations to censor stories it did not like and writers whom it feared? How did we wake up one morning to new customs of impeaching a president over a phone call? Of the speaker of the House tearing up the State of the Union address on national television? Of barring congressional members from serving on their assigned congressional committees? When did we assume the FBI had the right to subvert the campaign of a candidate it disliked? Was it legal suddenly for one presidential candidate to hire a foreign ex-spy to subvert the campaign of her rival?

Was some state or federal law passed that allowed biological males to compete in female sports? Did Congress enact such a law? Did the Supreme Court guarantee that biological male students could shower in gym locker rooms with biological women? Were women ever asked to redefine the very sports they had championed? When did the government pass a law depriving Americans of their freedom during a pandemic? In America can health officials simply cancel rental contracts or declare loan payments in suspension? How could it become illegal for mom-and-pop stores to sell flowers or shoes during a quarantine but not so for Walmart or Target?

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The emptiness expands.

The Ginni Thomas Investigation Ends Without a Mention in J6 Report (Turley)

The Jan. 6 committee issued its long-awaited report at 2022’s end, with the expected breathless punditry. Spoiler alert: It turns out the culprit of this “whodunit” was … wait for it … Donald Trump. What’s more interesting is the dog that did not bark. In Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s story “Silver Blaze,” the local inspector asks Sherlock Holmes, “Is there any other point to which you would wish to draw my attention?” Holmes responds, “To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time.” When the inspector objects, “The dog did nothing in the night-time,” Holmes replies, “That was the curious incident.” In the 895-page report, the “curious incident” is the lack of any reference to Ginni Thomas, Justice Clarence Thomas’ wife.

For months, members, the media and an army of pundits hammered away at the “smoking gun” texts Thomas sent to Trump chief of staff Mark Meadows and others calling the election stolen and demanding challenges to certifying the electoral votes. Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) was the first member of Congress to call for Justice Thomas to be impeached over his wife’s 29 messages. Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-NJ) called for Thomas to resign immediately as a “corrupt jurist.” Former Sen. Barbara Boxer and others joined these calls. (Boxer was particularly ironic since she used the same underlying federal law to challenge the certification of George W. Bush’s election.) Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) demanded an investigation. On the committee itself, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) fueled the frenzy and demanded subpoenas for both Thomases.

The media also went into hyperbolic overload. Liberal sites demanded Thomas be impeached, citing “watchdogs” who turned out to be the same crowd that has long denounced the justice. MSNBC’s Mehdi Hasan tweeted, “I have a question for Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Democrats: Why haven’t you impeached Clarence Thomas yet?” CNN and MSNBC commentator Tristan Snell tweeted that the couple had to be subpoenaed: “At best, they are material fact witnesses. At worst, they are co-conspirators to be charged with seditious conspiracy.” Professor Laurence Tribe (who declared Trump should be charged with attempted murder) also demanded the justice and his wife be subpoenaed. MSNBC’s Zeeshan Aleem declared in June that the scandal “keeps getting worse” but “the silver lining is that it will likely intensify calls for overhauling the high court, and help strip more people of the illusion that the Supreme Court is an apolitical branch of government and a neutral arbiter of the law.”

Activists like Sarah Lipton-Lubet, Take Back the Court Action Fund executive director, declared that “there’s much more to the story of Ginni Thomas’ participation in the January 6 attack that the House Select Committee and the American public deserve to know.” Yet it turns out what we knew was largely all we needed to know. There was not “much more to the story.” The entire Ginni Thomas scandal merited nary a mention in the massive report. Indeed, it doesn’t appear the committee had anything more than what we knew when the controversy began. The texts were never denied, and they weren’t surprising since Ginni Thomas was publicly supporting Trump and his claims. She was willing, moreover, to answer the committee’s questions voluntarily.

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Something’s not going right.

Trump Announces Plan To Destroy The Drug Cartels With The US Military (PM)

Former President Donald Trump announced on Thursday that he would order the US military to declare cartels as enemy combatants if he were to be reelected president. Trump said that he would deploy the Navy and Special Forces to defend the security of the Western hemisphere. Trump made the announcement as President Joe Biden prepares to make his first trip to the southern border, after having previously said that there were “more important” things to deal with. “The drug cartels are waging war on America—and it’s now time for America to wage war on the cartels,” President Trump said in his announcement. “The drug cartels and their allies in the Biden administration have the blood of countless millions on their hands. Millions and millions of families and people are being destroyed. When I am back in the White House, the drug kingpins and vicious traffickers will never sleep soundly again.”

A statement from Trump lays out an action plan that he says will “destroy the drug cartels,” which includes steps such as:
• “Restore all Trump border policies and fully secure the border”
• “Deploy all necessary military assets, including the US Navy, to impose a full naval embargo on the cartels, to ensure they cannot use our region’s waters to traffic illicit drugs to the US”
• “Order the Department of Defense to make appropriate use of special forces, cyber warfare, and other covert and overt actions to inflict maximum damage on cartel leadership, infrastructure, and operations”
• “Designate the major drug cartels as foreign terrorist organizations”
• “Cut off the cartels’ access to the global financial system”
• “Get full cooperation of neighboring governments to dismantle the cartels, or else fully expose the bribes and corruption that protect these criminal networks”
• “Ask Congress to ensure drug smugglers and traffickers can receive the Death Penalty”

“Joe Biden has spent the last two years dismantling the southern border,” the statement says. “Biden’s Open Borders policies are killing innocent Americans, ravaging American communities, enriching the cartels, and destabilizing large parts of Mexico and Latin America.” Trump’s statement points out that since Biden took office, 200,000 Americans have died from drug overdoses, with hundreds of thousands of pounds of fentanyl, heroin, meth, cocaine, and other illicit narcotics “pouring across our wide-open border and into American communities.” Enough fentanyl was seized at the border last year to kill every single American. “BOTTOM LINE,” Trump’s statement ends, “Biden has destroyed the border—President Trump will destroy the cartels.”

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From Abortion

Sotomayor Felt “Sense of Despair” Because Babies Would be Protected (LN)

Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor expressed a “sense of despair” and sadness Wednesday about recent decisions by the conservative-majority court, including the Dobbs v. Jackson abortion case. Sotomayor and two other justices dissented in the historic June ruling, which overturned Roe v. Wade and began allowing laws to protect unborn babies from abortion again. Research estimates at least 10,000 unborn babies were saved from abortions just in the first two months. Speaking at the Association of American Law Schools’ annual meeting in San Diego, Sotomayor said she feels “deeply sad” about the new direction of the court, according to Reuters. “I did have a sense of despair about the direction my court was going,” the Obama appointee said.

Although she did not mention the Dobbs case specifically, Sotomayor talked about feeling “shell-shocked” and “deeply sad” about recent rulings, adding: “It’s not an option to fall into despair. I have to get up and keep fighting,” Reuters reports. Sotomayor would have upheld Roe and continued to force states to legalize killing unborn babies for any reason up to viability, but she was overruled. Some of her arguments against Dobbs were based on false and misleading claims by the pro-abortion movement and have been debunked by researchers and doctors. The Dobbs decision may have been the most monumental ruling by the Supreme Court in decades. For nearly 50 years under Roe, American abortion laws were among the most extreme and permissive in the world.

Just a few other countries, including China and North Korea, allow elective abortions up to birth, as Roe did. As a result, more than 63 million unborn babies were legally aborted in the U.S. Now, because of Dobbs, state and local lawmakers may pass legislation to protect unborn babies again. Already 14 states are enforcing laws that limit or ban abortions and eight more are fighting in court to do the same. In November, voters also elected more pro-life lawmakers to their state legislatures in several states, paving the way for even more protections. Despite her pro-abortion leanings, Sotomayor recently did defend her conservative colleague Justice Clarence Thomas from unfounded leftist attacks, saying she knows he “cares about people.” Thomas joined the majority in Dobbs.

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Whatever.

These Doctors Pushed Masking, Lockdowns on Twitter. But They Don’t Exist (SFS)

Last month, Dr. Robert Honeyman lost their sister to Covid. They wrote about it on Twitter and received dozens of condolences, over 4,000 retweets and 43,000 likes. Exactly one month later, on Dec. 12, Honeyman wrote that another tragedy had befallen their family. “Sad to announce that my husband has entered a coma after being in hospital with Covid. The doctor is unsure if he will come out,” they tweeted. “This year has been the toughest of my life losing my sister to this virus. This is the first time in my life I don’t see light at the end of the tunnel.” Again, the condolences and well-wishes rolled in. But there was a problem: Honeyman wasn’t real.

The transgender “Doctor of Sociology and Feminist studies” with a “keen interest in poetry” who used they/them pronouns was, in fact, a stock photo described on DepositPhotos, a royalty-free image site, as “Smiling happy, handsome latino man outside—headshot portrait.” Their supposedly comatose husband, Dr. Patrick C. Honeyman, was also fake. His Twitter photo had been stolen from an insurance professional in Wayne, Indiana. The two fake doctors, whose accounts urged extreme caution about Covid-19, were part of a network of at least four fake accounts that touted their ties to the LGBTQ+ community, vocally advocated for mask-wearing and social distancing, and dished out criticism to those they felt were not taking the pandemic seriously.

The Honeymans could not be reached for comment, as they do not exist. At publication time, Robert Honeyman’s account was no longer active. The fake doctors were uncovered by Joshua Gutterman Tranen, a self-described “gay writer” pursuing a master’s of fine arts at Bennington College. He saw Robert Honeyman’s tweet about their husband being in a coma, noticed people he followed also followed them, and thought that they might be part of the LGBTQ+ academic community. But after 10 minutes of googling, Gutterman Tranen concluded that Robert Honeyman’s photo was a stock image and their biography stretched boundaries of believability: an academic who left no traces on academic websites and had lost two family members to Covid in late 2022, despite masking and distancing.

The character looked like “liberal Mad Libs,” Gutterman Tranen said. “I’m a self-identified leftist, and I understand that people have a lot of different identities, but it felt concocted in the lab about how many identities and horrible experiences can we put on one person,” he said.

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“..Della Pietra has contacted hundreds of clinics all over Europe, all of which still don’t allow people “the human right of free blood choice.”

Swiss Organization To Provide Safe Blood Transfusions From Unvaxxed (NN)

An organization in Switzerland called Safe Blood Donation has been set up to provide people all over the world with safe blood transfusions exclusively from people who remain unvaccinated against the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19). The organization was founded in late 2022 by Swiss naturopath George Della Pietra. According to the group’s website, the group’s goal is to provide people all over the world with a way to receive life-saving blood transfusions while refusing to take the vaccines developed against COVID-19. “Be it an emergency, a scheduled operation or because you need regular transfusions for other medical reasons. This is where Safe Blood Donation comes into play as an intermediary,” reads a statement on the organization’s website.

The group will essentially act as a middleman to connect people all over the world with medical partners who are willing to accept blood donations and provide blood transfusions to people with health needs, but are hesitant to go to hospitals where they will almost certainly receive blood from vaccinated individuals. Della Pietra created his organization due to the release of the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines causing disputes all over the world over blood treatments and transfusions. Specifically, people who are skeptical of the benefits that come with taking the experimental vaccines and doesn’t want their body tainted by the unsafe products. [..] Della Pietra has contacted hundreds of clinics all over Europe, all of which still don’t allow people “the human right of free blood choice.”

Furthermore, dozens of clinics he contacted have all refused to become a partner of the new organization. Some of these clinics are sympathetic, but claimed they do not want to be mentioned for fear of reprisals from the mainstream medical community. The founder further noted that his main goal is not to run Safe Blood Donation as a blood bank, noting that “this is not possible at the moment” due to legal concerns, but to act as a quick referral service “to match blood donors and recipients” who are then sent to a medical partner’s clinic where the safe, unvaccinated blood transfusion will be handled. In return for providing people with this service, members are also urged to “make themselves available as blood donors” for other people looking for unvaccinated blood transfusions.

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“..in all cases there has been “airtight privacy” about whether they were vaccinated and what their diagnosis was..”

What Caused Damar Hamlin’s Cardiac Arrest? Experts Weigh In (CHD)

Damar Hamlin’s sudden collapse on live TV during Monday night’s NFL game triggered an avalanche of media coverage, with experts weighing in on what might have caused the 24-year-old player’s cardiac arrest after what appeared to be a routine tackle. Some news outlets quickly concluded Hamlin’s heart attack most likely was caused by commotio cordis, a rare phenomenon that occurs when a small and extremely fast-moving projectile — such as a baseball, hockey puck or lacrosse ball — strikes the chest in a precise location, disrupting the heart’s rhythm. The condition affects about 10-20 people per year, usually teenage boys. Most mainstream media reports rejected the theory that Hamlin’s cardiac arrest might be linked to COVID-19 vaccines, using terms such as “far-right,” “vile,” “anti-vaxxer” and “conspiracy theorists.”

However, Dr. Peter McCullough told “Good Morning CHD” host Aimee Villella McBride why he believes the vaccines can’t be ruled out. McCullough, an internist, cardiologist, epidemiologist and leading expert on COVID-19 treatment, explained the possible role of the vaccines in cardiac arrest and other heart injuries among athletes. He explained that any physician watching replays of Hamlin’s collapse immediately starts thinking through a differential diagnosis of what could have caused it. He said: “Let me tell you that I did see head and neck contact with a tackle, which is not uncommon at all in football. Remember that the shoulder pads have a breastbone protector, [a] pretty substantial breastbone [protector], so they take helmets in the chest all the time.”

McCullough acknowledged that when a baseball hits an unprotected breastbone, it can precipitate a cardiac arrest, but said he was not aware of that happening in pro football, leading him to rule out commotio cordis. “And as I watched things unfold it was relatively clear that [Hamlin] was in a primary cardiac arrest,” he said. McCullough believes there is a public health obligation to disclose what happened. He said: “This is a player who is employed by a team, and the team and the league mandated the vaccine very publicly. “So we have a situation where we have a public figure, the public employer mandates the vaccine in a very public manner, there is a disclosure that 95% of the players have taken the vaccine, and the FDA says the vaccine causes myocarditis and the published peer-reviewed literature says that it can be fatal.”

“This is not a time for privacy,” McCullough said. “The public needs to know that diagnosis because he was under one of these mandates and this happened on the national and world stage.” McCullough said numerous athletes have collapsed on the field and been resuscitated, but that in all cases there has been “airtight privacy” about whether they were vaccinated and what their diagnosis was. “I think the Hamlin case is going to break through all this,” he said.

Read more …

 

 

 

 

Cut a tree

 

 

Chinese exercise
https://twitter.com/i/status/1610702098198413313

 

 

1842 farmer

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Oct 052022
 


Odilon Redon The boat 1900

 

CIA Chief Weighs In On Putin’s Alleged Nuclear Threat (RT)
Russia ‘Fully Committed’ To UN Consensus On Nuclear War (RT)
US Risks ‘Direct Conflict’ With Russia Over Ukraine – UN Envoy (RT)
The Strong, and the Merely Powerful (Patrick Lawrence)
Putin Spox Weighs In On Elon Musk’s Attempt At Ukraine Peace Deal (ZH)
Elon Musk Proposes To Buy Twitter At Original $44B Price To Avoid Trial (NYP)
Roger Waters Says He’s On Ukrainian ‘Kill List’ (RT)
Kremlin Reacts To Zelensky Banning Talks With Putin (RT)
Russian Partial Mobilization Numbers Revealed (RT)
Maneuver Warfare (Schryver)
Capital Controls – The Third Horseman Of The Unholy Trinity (Hubble)
Fauci Gives Daszak Millions More To Study Gain Of Function (NYP)
Hunter Biden Committed ‘Fraud’ Against Business Partners – Bobulinski (Fox)
The Morning After (CJ Hopkins)
Why Does Time Go Forwards, Not Backwards? (Henriques)

 

 

 

 

Truss

 

 

Just economists losing their minds over Liz Truss’ economics

 

 

 

 

Gerald Ford

 

 

 

 

 

 

There is none.

“..we don’t see any practical evidence today in the US intelligence community that [Putin] is moving closer to actual use” or that there’s any “imminent threat of using tactical nuclear weapons.”

CIA Chief Weighs In On Putin’s Alleged Nuclear Threat (RT)

The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) does not believe that Russian President Vladimir Putin is currently preparing to deploy nuclear weapons in Ukraine, the agency’s chief William Burns said in an interview on Sunday. “We have to take very seriously [any] kind of threats, given everything that’s at stake,” Burns told CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell. However, he acknowledged that “we don’t see any practical evidence today in the US intelligence community that [Putin] is moving closer to actual use” or that there’s any “imminent threat of using tactical nuclear weapons.” Asked if the Russian leader was bluffing when speaking about being ready to use “all the means at [its] disposal” if the country’s territorial integrity were threatened, Burns said it was “very hard to say at this point.”

The CIA director described the rhetoric from Putin and other high-ranking officials as “reckless and deeply irresponsible.” He also suggested that it was up to US policymakers to communicate to Moscow that such a decision would have “severe consequences.” UK Secretary of Defense Ben Wallace claimed on Sunday that Russia was“highly unlikely” to use nuclear weapons in Ukraine, but claimed the Russian leader was also “totally irrational.” The issue has been at the fore since Putin announced a partial mobilization two weeks ago and warned that Moscow was ready to use any weapons from its extensive arsenal to defend itself if necessary. “If the territorial integrity of our nation is threatened, we will certainly use all the means that we have to defend Russia and our people. It’s not a bluff,” Putin stated at the time.

He reiterated the message on Friday in an address at the signing of the unification treaties for the accession of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, along with the Kherson and Zaporozhye Regions, into Russia. “We will defend our land with all the forces and resources,” the president vowed. Putin’s words have been interpreted by politicians and media in the West as a veiled threat that Moscow may deploy nuclear weapons in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. In late September, Russia’s deputy foreign minister Sergey Ryabkov rejected such speculation, saying: “we are not threatening anyone with nuclear weapons.” The diplomat referred journalists to Russia’s military doctrine, which states that nuclear weapons may only be employed if such arms or other weapons of mass destruction are being used against the country, or it is faced with an existential threat from conventional arms.

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The reason this has been so fully distorted, can not be a good one.

Russia ‘Fully Committed’ To UN Consensus On Nuclear War (RT)

Moscow maintains that a war between nuclear-armed countries should never be fought, the top nonproliferation official in the Russian foreign ministry told the UN General Assembly’s First Committee on Tuesday. “We believe that one of the most important tasks is to maintain adherence by all countries of the ‘nuclear five’ to the postulate that any war between countries possessing nuclear weapons cannot be allowed to happen, which was reflected in the January joint statement of the leaders of nuclear powers. Russia is fully committed to it,”said Vladimir Yermakov, director of the arms control and nonproliferation department at the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The committee, which is in charge of arms control and international security, heard the statement through Konstantin Vorontsov, deputy head of the Russian delegation to the UNGA.

Yermakov’s remarks follow a clarification from the Kremlin that Moscow will only use nuclear weapons based on its official doctrine – meaning, in self-defense from weapons of mass destruction, or where its survival was threatened by conventional means. “There can be no other considerations here,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Monday. Russia has been repeatedly accused by the US and its allies of threatening the use of nuclear weapons in Ukraine. Putin’s spokesman Peskov has repeatedly directed reporters to the official doctrine in order to dispel any misunderstandings. According to Russia’s nuclear posture, Moscow reserves the right to use atomic weapons only “in response to the use of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction against Russia or its allies,”as well as “in response to a conventional attack that threatens the very existence”of Russia as a sovereign state.

Over the weekend, however, head of Chechnya Ramzan Kadyrov proposed using “low-yield nuclear weapons” as one of the “more drastic measures”regarding the conflict in Ukraine. Kadyrov was addressing the withdrawal of Russian troops from a Donetsk Region town due to a persistent Ukrainian assault. While Russian regional heads – including Kadyrov, who Peskov said has “contributed a lot” to the operations in Ukraine – are free to express personal opinions, they cannot give free rein to their emotions, “even in difficult times,”the Kremlin spokesman said.

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“Continued American deliveries of weapons, intelligence and even fighters to Ukraine are approaching the “dangerous line” of direct confrontation with Moscow..”

US Risks ‘Direct Conflict’ With Russia Over Ukraine – UN Envoy (RT)

Continued American deliveries of weapons, intelligence and even fighters to Ukraine are approaching the “dangerous line” of direct confrontation with Moscow, Russian diplomat Konstantin Vorontsov told the UN General Assembly on Tuesday. Shortly before that, the Pentagon announced the contents of another military shipment to Ukraine, valued at $625 million. “The US is increasing the deliveries of weapons to Ukraine, providing its military with intelligence information, ensuring the direct participation of its fighters and advisers in the conflict,”Vorontsov, who is the deputy head of the Russian delegation, told the General Assembly’s First Committee, a body charged with arms control and security issues.

This “not only prolongs hostilities and leads to new casualties, but also brings the situation closer to the dangerous line of a direct military clash between Russia and NATO,” Vorontsov added. Moscow has repeatedly warned the US and its allies against sending weapons, ammunition and equipment to Ukraine, but Washington and NATO vowed to keep doing so for “as long as it takes, ”while insisting that doesn’t make them a party to the conflict. According to the Pentagon, the US has spent more than $19.6 billion in “security assistance” to Ukraine since 2014, and another $16.8 billion since February 24, when the Russian military operation began. The US will continue to provide Ukraine with “key capabilities” and to address Kiev’s “evolving battlefield requirements,” the military added.

The latest batch of weapons and equipment, valued at $625 million, includes four High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) and ammunition for them, 16 each of the 155mm and 105mm howitzers, 75,000 rounds for artillery ammunition – including guided rounds and remote mine-laying ones – small arms and mortar rounds, and 200 MRAP armored vehicles.

Macgregor: “Other than Poland, no one in NATO is interested in going to war with Russia. If we persist on this line, we will see NATO dissolve and fragment.”

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“Strong nations serve their people as their primary responsibility.”

The Strong, and the Merely Powerful (Patrick Lawrence)

There are various ways to interpret what Putin, Xi, and their allies among non–Western nations are working toward. In my view, they draw a distinction none has put into words but which is nonetheless essential to their vision: There are strong nations and there are the merely powerful. In the world order as we have it the powerful dominate — ever more evidently by force alone. In the world order now emerging, it is genuinely strong nations that will at last prevail over those reliant on power alone, and force will have little to do with it. [..] Strong nations serve their people as their primary responsibility. This is where I begin as I characterize them. They have a purpose, a telos, as the ancient Greeks put it, and a shared belief in the worth of their ideal.

They have a commitment to advancing the well-being of their citizens — to constructive action in the interest of the commonweal. They value their cultures, their histories, their memories. These common characteristics confer on strong nations solid but flexible social fabrics and an assumed sense of shared community. They are a source of identity and at the same time expressions of identity. Ironically, strength of the kind I describe tends to generate power. But it is power judiciously deployed. Genuinely strong nations have no need to dominate others. They are ungiven to subterfuge or subversion, seeing no purpose in it. They value mutual benefit in their relations with others simply because this is the surest way to stability and a peaceful order.

Let us not traffic in impossible ideals or in the thought of nations as pure as snow. There are none. A strong nation may have many things about it that are not to be admired — awful things, even. A strong nation may also be powerful. China is such a case. I am of the view — and I realize there are others — that China does not use its power to malign purpose. Remove the Sinophobia and anti–Chinese paranoia, and the record supports this.

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“Achieving peace without fulfilling Russia’s conditions is absolutely impossible. Many ideas there deserve attention,” he said..”

Putin Spox Weighs In On Elon Musk’s Attempt At Ukraine Peace Deal (ZH)

The Russian Presidency’s office has responded to billionaire Elon Musk’s “Russia-Ukraine Peace” Twitter poll which he put out Monday, and resulted in swift backlash among pundits who accused the Tesla and SpaceX founder of mimicking “pro-Russian” talking points. Musk pushed back against the avalanche of detractors, explaining that he’s interested in exploring ways to arrive at a peaceful settlement, and not continued escalation toward nuclear war. Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Tuesday told reporters, “We consider it very positive that a man like Musk is looking for a peaceful way out of the situation around Ukraine,” according to Interfax.

Musk had floated the idea of “redoing” last week’s referendums on the four Ukrainian territories in the east joining the Russian Federation under UN supervision. He also controversially said that as basis of a peace deal Ukraine would have to permanently cede Crimea. It was particularly the Crimea aspect which sparked an immediate backlash and pile-on of pundits, journalists, and even diplomats – on up to Ukrainian President Zelensky himself – who suggested this means Musk “supports Russia”. According to more of Peskov’s words via Interfax (machine translation): “At the same time, he recalled that from the very beginning, Russia advocated that the conditions put forward by Moscow be fulfilled through negotiations. Unlike many professional diplomats, Peskov noted, Musk is still trying to find ways to achieve peace. “Achieving peace without fulfilling Russia’s conditions is absolutely impossible. Many ideas there deserve attention,” he said..”

But Peskov underscored there can be no “redo” of the referendums, given Moscow has already moved to bestow legal recognition of the four regions’ integration into Russia. “And there can be nothing else here. Today the president will sign decrees, and this will become the territory of the Russian Federation. But I repeat once again, the fact itself is very positive, when such people think, try to think logically, what could be done, to switch to a peaceful course,” Peskov said. To review, Musk’s poll had laid out four proposals: • Redo elections of annexed regions under UN supervision. Russia leaves if that is will of the people. • Crimea formally part of Russia, as it has been since 1783 (until Khrushchev’s mistake). • Water supply to Crimea assured. • Ukraine remains neutral. After more than 2.7 million votes, of which Musk said many were bots attempting to skew the results, it’s clear that public opinion remains fiercely divided on the war, given sizeable groups on either side. Meanwhile Chinese state media pundit Hu Xijin pointed out the following…

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We presume.

Elon Musk Proposes To Buy Twitter At Original $44B Price To Avoid Trial (NYP)

Elon Musk has offered to close his original deal to buy Twitter for a whopping $44 billion — a bid to avoid a court trial over the hotly contested agreement slated for later this month, sources told The Post. The billionaire Tesla CEO is in talks for a settlement to acquire the social network for $54.20 per share — the same price he agreed to in April before saying in July he was pulling out of the deal, according to sources close to the talks. Twitter shares spiked more than 13% to $48.13 immediately following an earlier report of Musk’s proposal by Bloomberg and were halted for pending news. Musk sent a letter to Twitter with the offer, according to Bloomberg. Musk notified Twitter’s lawyers of the offer to go through with the deal under its original terms late Monday night, according to a source familiar with the matter.

The two sides worked toward hashing out an agreement in a Delaware Court of Chancery hearing this morning that was closed to the public, the source said. Another hearing will likely be held this afternoon but it’s unclear whether the judge hearing the case, Chancellor Kathaleen McCormick, will make it open to the public. Months of bad blood between Twitter and Musk have made Twitter insistent that the Delaware court supervise the closing process in the coming days. If everything goes as expected and Musk doesn’t try to pull any last-minute “gotchas” on Twitter, the deal should realistically close within days or at most a week, a source familiar with the matter said. Twitter sued Musk over his refusal to go through with the deal in a trial that was set to open on Oct. 17.

Musk was scheduled to be deposed by Twitter’s attorneys on Thursday and Friday this week, raising the prospect that the last-minute deal was made in part to avoid the deposition. [..] Analysts who cover Twitter say that $54.20 is an astronomically high price to pay for the scandal-plagued social media site. Without Musk’s involvement, Twitter would be trading in the $20 range, analysts say.

BBee musk

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The kill list has Kiev government support, which in turn has massive US/UK support. The list now includes US/UK citizens. Can’t make it up? Well, you don’t have to. This is a government that actively supports, to the tune of tens of billions, a foreign government that threatens to kill its citizens.

Roger Waters Says He’s On Ukrainian ‘Kill List’ (RT)

British rock star Roger Waters, a co-founder of Pink Floyd, has allegedly been placed on a Ukrainian “kill list”after speaking out against Western military meddling and calling on Kiev to make peace with Russia. In an interview with Rolling Stone published on Tuesday, the 79-year-old pushed back against accusations that he’s been repeating Russian talking points about the conflict in Ukraine. “Don’t forget, I’m on a kill list that is supported by the Ukrainian government. I’m on the fu**ing list, and they’ve killed people recently… When they kill you, they write ‘liquidated’ across your picture. Well, I’m one of those fu**ing pictures.” Waters gave the example of Darya Dugina, the Russian journalist murdered in August after appearing on the Ukrainian Mirotvorets list.

As the musician noted, her entry on the list was marked “liquidated” after she was killed in a car-bombing. Others who have questioned or criticized the Kiev regime, such as photojournalists Andrea Rocchelli of Italy and Andrei Stenin of Russia, have also been killed after appearing on the Mirotvorets list. The site lists personal information on its blacklist targets, which also include politicians and NGO activists. Mirotvorets, or “Peacemaker,” is an independent database of individuals whom anonymous moderators consider to be threats to Ukrainian national security. The site denies being a kill list; rather, it claims to be a source of information for law-enforcement agencies and “special services” about pro-Russian terrorists, separatists and war criminals, among others. It allegedly has links to Ukraine’s Interior Ministry.

Waters stirred backlash earlier this year, when he suggested that US President Joe Biden was a “war criminal” for fueling the Ukraine crisis and sent an open letter to the wife of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky, urging her to help “stop the slaughter” by pushing for a negotiated peace deal with Russia. He later sent an open letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin, asking for guarantees that Russia wouldn’t expand beyond Crimea and the Donbass region. Pressed by Rolling Stone on why he isn’t supportive of Ukraine’s resistance against Russian forces, Waters said, “Because it’s an unnecessary war, and those people should not be dying. And Russia should not have been encouraged to invade Ukraine.” He also dismissed reports of Russian war crimes in Ukraine as Western propaganda.

Two concerts that Waters had scheduled for next April in Krakow, Poland, may be canceled because of his push for a negotiated peace in Ukraine, the musician said late last month. “Draconian censoring of my work will deny them the opportunity to make up their own minds,” he said of his Polish audiences. The wide-ranging Mirotvorets kill list also includes Faina Savenkova, a 13-year-old girl in the Lugansk People’s Republic who called for the United Nations to end the fighting that has dragged on in her region since 2014.

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We’ll wait for his successor.

Kremlin Reacts To Zelensky Banning Talks With Putin (RT)

To resume peace talks with Kiev, Moscow will wait for either a change of stance by the current Ukrainian president or for a new leader, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said. This comes after President Zelensky signed a decree ruling out negotiations with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Even before the launch of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine in late February, Moscow “was the supporter of the idea of achieving the terms put forward by the Russian side through diplomatic means,” Peskov told journalists on Tuesday. Russia is still ready to look for a negotiated solution to the conflict between the neighbors, according to the spokesman. But “it takes two parties to negotiate,” he noted. “We’ll now be waiting for the current president to change his stance or for the arrival of the future president of Ukraine, who would change his position in the interests of the Ukrainian people,”Peskov said.

On Tuesday, Zelensky signed a decree on Ukraine officially rejecting peace talks with Putin. It rubber stamped decisions made by Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, on Friday, just hours after Putin signed agreements on Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics and Kherson and Zaporozhye Regions joining Russia. One of the resolutions was: “stating the impossibility of conducting negotiations with Russia’s President Vladimir Putin.” Zelensky recorded a video address after the meeting claiming that “we [Ukraine] are ready for dialogue with Russia, but with another president of Russia.” In his speech on Friday, Putin called upon Ukraine to “cease all hostilities, stop the war it started back in 2014 and return to the negotiating table.”

However, he made it clear that the decision to unite with Russia, which the people of Donbass, Kherson and Zaporozhye Regions made during referendums, was not up for discussion. Kiev should treat the “free choice” of the four territories “with respect,” Putin said, adding that it was “the only way for peace.” Moscow and Kiev have not sat down at the negotiating table since talks in Istanbul in late March. The Russian side, which initially expressed optimism on the peace process, later accused Ukraine of backtracking on all the progress achieved in Türkiye, saying it had lost trust in Kiev’s negotiators. In recent months, Ukraine has been either putting forward terms that Moscow deemed ‘unrealistic’ for the resumption of talks, or said that they can only begin after Russia is defeated on the battlefield.

During the conflict, Zelensky has also, on several occasions, proposed meeting with Putin face-to-face in order to find a way to end the hostilities. But Moscow insisted that the two leaders should only get together to sign concrete agreements already prepared for them by the negotiating teams.

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These things take time.

Russian Partial Mobilization Numbers Revealed (RT)

Russia’s partial mobilization plans are already more than two-thirds complete, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu announced during a conference call on Tuesday. It comes almost two weeks after President Vladimir Putin called to bolster the military amid the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. The defense chief said that over 200,000 persons have so far been added to the Russian Armed Forces, all of whom are now undergoing the necessary training. Shoigu has instructed relevant officials to provide the mobilized recruits with all the necessary clothing and other items and appoint them to military positions.

The minister added that there is also a significant number of volunteers showing up at the military commissariats wanting to join the army, and stressed that it is “extremely important” to assess each appeal carefully and to not reject anyone unless there are serious reasons to. He also explained that those who have been called into service in the past two weeks will only be sent to take part in Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine after they finish training and develop combat coordination with units that are already on the ground. In order to speed up the training process, the minister has ordered commanders to provide fresh recruits with additional training under the guidance of officers with combat experience.

Furthermore, the ministry announced that conscripts who fall under the upcoming draft, which will take place in November and recruit some 120,000 people, will serve in units not involved in the military operation. Meanwhile, those who have just finished their mandatory service in Russia’s armed forces will be returning home. Speaking in a televised address on September 21, Russian President Vladimir Putin declared a partial mobilization, looking to recruit some 300,000 reservists to take part in the ongoing military conflict with Ukraine which began in late February. The Russian Defense Ministry has since clarified that the mobilization prioritizes those who have served in the military and who’ve had previous combat experience as well as the necessary specializations needed on the front line.

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“British intelligence has warned the General Staff that these forces may be concentrating for a Russian counter-attack..”

Maneuver Warfare (Schryver)

For weeks now, the vastly outnumbered Russian forces have been executing a fighting retreat – ceding territory to the advancing Ukrainians, briefly occupying strong prepared defensive positions from which they inflict severe losses on the Ukrainian attackers, and then retreating yet again to another line of prepared positions. As is always the case during an ongoing battle, reliable casualty numbers are difficult to ascertain. But the nature of the terrain, the strength of the prepared Russian defenses, and the Russians’ overwhelming superiority in terms of air power and artillery have afforded them a huge battlefield advantage.

Contributing to this advantage has been the frequently displayed rashness of almost suicidal banzai-like Ukrainian assaults on hardened Russian positions which, although their significant numerical superiority ultimately permitted them to compel another Russian retreat, hugely disproportionate losses of manpower and military equipment have been inflicted on the Ukrainian attackers. Late last week, in my article entitled Turning Point, I described how the Ukrainians had expended thousands of troops and hundreds of vehicles in their quasi-fanatical attempts to take both Kupyansk and Liman. Nevertheless, those two towns were taken, and the Ukrainians have continued to make modest advances since then while the Russians prepare yet another hardened defensive line several kilometers further east.

I’ve also been reporting for weeks now regarding the never-ending trains of Russian equipment and troops streaming into the region from various directions – and yet few if any of these major reinforcements have found their way to the front lines, much to the chagrin of those cheering on the Russian cause, and who have been devastated by what appear to be repeated Russian defeats. However, in just the last few hours, reports have been leaking out that western intelligence has detected a major buildup of Russian forces in and around Belgorod, just across the border of the Kharkov Oblast, and immediately north of the current line of contact. The reliability of this intelligence is not yet determined, and even if true, its significance remains as yet unknown, but I will share two of the reports I’ve seen on Telegram in the past couple hours – reports that are circulating among both Russian- and Ukrainian-friendly sources with a reasonable degree of established credibility.

First from a Ukrainian-friendly channel that has long exhibited connections to a source within the Ukrainian government: “Our source reports that the Office of the President received a warning that the risk of a Russian strike and counter-offensive behind Ukrainian lines remains. “The only thing is that no one can say exactly when, how, and where it will happen. The movement can abruptly begin along the entire border of Ukraine. The Russians know that Zelensky instructed everyone to remove reserves from the border regions and send them to the front line for an offensive (blitzkrieg). “That is, once again entering the Sumy region, the RF Armed Forces can easily take hundreds of kilometers under them, not to mention an attack on the northern part of the Kharkov region, or Belarus joining the game.”

A Russian-friendly source (presumably also relying on a Ukraine-friendly source) reports as follows: “MI6 has passed intelligence to the Office of the President (Zelensky) and the General Staff (Zaluzhny) that Russia continues to amass forces in the Belgorod region and appear to be in no rush to use them as a reserve. “British intelligence has warned the General Staff that these forces may be concentrating for a Russian counter-attack along the border of the Oskol River to cut off the increasingly stretched Ukrainian forces grouping that has only a few supply routes available to it.”

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“..central bankers and governments are going to get sick of being humiliated by financial markets. They’ll decide that significant currency intervention is needed to stabilise exchange rates.”

Capital Controls – The Third Horseman Of The Unholy Trinity (Hubble)

According to an economic theory called the Unholy Trinity, governments can only ever have two of the following three things: pegged exchange rates, independent monetary policy and free capital flows. The reason why this is so is quite complicated. But the point is that they must choose two of the three, making the third a pressure valve for the problems created by their attempts to control the other two. Of course, governments occasionally try to have all three. But it always ends in humiliation. It’s only a question of when. In this context, humiliation may mean the breaking of the (managed) currency peg. Think of what happened to sterling on Black Wednesday, 16 September 1992, when the currency was forced out of the Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM) and subsequently plunged.

Alternatively, humiliation may mean the loss of control of monetary policy, and rampant inflation. There are plenty of contemporary examples. Finally, humiliation may involve massive capital flight from the country in question, which results in the imposition of capital controls. Apartheid-era South Africa provides a good example. Just look at the news today for the latest example of the Unholy Trinity being on the move… In Japan, the authorities re pegging interest rates low to help the economy and the government deal with too much debt. This is a major reason why the yen has been hammered in foreign exchange markets this year.

In the UK, there are fears of a currency crisis because interest rates can’t go higher without triggering a debt crisis. In Sweden, the central bank was forced to hike interest rates a full percent to try and stem the tide in the falling currency. The pressure valves are whistling. Currencies and monetary policy are colliding with each other. And policy makers are being humiliated. But what about the third part of the Unholy Trinity? For now, capital flows are still free. In my view, at some point, central bankers and governments are going to get sick of being humiliated by financial markets. They’ll decide that significant currency intervention is needed to stabilise exchange rates. And they won’t be willing to give up on controlling monetary policy. But that means they’ll be forced to unleash the third horseman of the Unholy Trinity: capital controls.

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It cannot -should not- be that Fauci gets to terrorize the nation for 2+ years, double his wealth in the process, retire in peace with the largest US pension ever, and pay Daszak millions more for gain-of-function research.

Fauci Gives Daszak Millions More To Study Gain Of Function (NYP)

A shadowy NYC non-profit run by a scientist who tried to squelch the theory that COVID-19 emerged from a Chinese lab has received millions more from the National Institutes of Health to study similar viruses in Southeast Asia. A $653,392 grant to Peter Daszak’s EcoHealth Alliance, awarded Sept. 21, is being administered by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases — whose director, Dr. Anthony Fauci, announced in August that he was stepping down at the end of this year. The grant is the first installment of a five-year award totaling $3.3 million — and was doled out on the same day NIAID awarded EcoHealth more than $2.1 million for two more ongoing studies, one of which involves so-called “gain-of-function” to make viruses more dangerous.

EcoHealth Alliance previously received millions in grants — directing some of those funds to the Wuhan Institute of Virology, from where many believe COVID-19 leaked into the city of 11 million and trigged the worst global pandemic in 100 years. Previously released emails have documented a close relationship between Daszak and Fauci, who received a “personal thank you” from the EcoHealth chief in April 2020 for backing the theory that COVID-19 spread naturally from bats to humans. Vanity Fair reported in June of last year that Daszak personally organized a February 2020 statement signed by 27 scientists and published in the influential British medical journal The Lancet.

The statement, which deplored the lab leak idea as a conspiracy theory, included the signatures of six scientists who had either worked at or been funded by EcoHealth Alliance — conflicts that, along with Daszak’s ties to the Wuhan lab, were not disclosed. Daszak has so far declined to answer questions from lawmakers about EcoHealth’s work with the Wuhan lab, leading Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) to call for the organization to be blocked from receiving federal funds until its leader comes clean. “This is like a bad sequel with the same plot and characters, but a bigger budget,” Ernst told The Post in a statement Monday.

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“He effectively swapped out an entity that he owned 20% of to a business that he owned 100% of, which is fraud.”

Hunter Biden Committed ‘Fraud’ Against Business Partners – Bobulinski (Fox)

Tony Bobulinski says his former associate, Hunter Biden, committed crimes against his business partners by tampering with key documents to funnel over $5 million into a company he owned. “It’s called fraud,” Bobulinski told Fox News host Tucker Carlson, during an in-depth conversation that will air during “Tucker Carlson Tonight” on Tuesday. Bobulinski, a retired lieutenant in the U.S. Navy, is the former CEO of SinoHawk Holdings, which he has long said was the partnership between a Chinese energy firm and the Biden family. He believes Hunter Biden changed references to a SinoHawk-linked LLC called Oneida Holdings in a 2017 limited liability company agreement to divert millions of dollars to a company he held a larger stake in.


“It’s sort of staggering that that document is exactly the same document as SinoHawk Holdings, LLC. And it appears that Hunter Biden, Jim Biden and the Biden family literally copied the same document down to typos… they removed Oneida Holdings, which was the Delaware LLC that represented Jim Biden, Hunter Biden, myself, Rob Walker and James Gilliar,” Bobulinski said. “Hunter and his lawyer, Jorge Misires, replaced it with Owasco, which was Hunter Biden’s law firm or business that he operated,” Bobulinski said. “He effectively swapped out an entity that he owned 20% of to a business that he owned 100% of, which is fraud.” Carlson then asked Bobulinski if he saw any other possible explanation than fraud committed by Hunter Biden. “I’m sure you can reach out to the Biden family and get comment from them, but there are calls,” Bobulinski said. “He received over $5 million.”

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“When you’re radically destabilizing and restructuring a society, you hit them hard with the Shock-and-Awe for a few weeks, or months (or years in this case), and then you gently ease them into the new “reality.”

The Morning After (CJ Hopkins)

This is the weirdest part of the PSYOP. It’s like the morning after an office party on which you wake up almost terminally hungover to hazy memories of having performed a Tequila-fuelled blowjob on Bob in Accounting in what was either the 9th Floor Reception Area or possibly the downstairs lobby of your building while someone vaguely resembling that smirking kid in the Mail Room filmed it on his phone. Yes, it’s the Morning After … that revolting regurgitant chorus you’re hearing is the sound of millions of Covidian Cultists down on their knees in their gender-neutral bathrooms praying to the Porcelain God. It has been quite a trip these last two and a half years, but the orgy of fear and hatred is over, the mass hysteria is wearing off, and the reality of the damage they have done is beginning to become undeniable.

Countless thousands of people have been killed, seriously injured, and permanently disabled, victims of experimental “vaccines” they did not need but were coerced into taking. Societies have been torn apart, economies crippled, institutions discredited, democratic precepts like the rule of law and constitutional rights made mockeries of themselves, friends and families turned against each other, and so on, and the dust hasn’t even settled yet. It will take many years to assess the damage…or, rather, to recontextualize, rationalize, deny, and memory-hole the damage (while simultaneously “normalizing” the fascistic biosecurity dystopia the damage made it possible to implement). This process is now well underway.

As I’m sure you’ve noticed over the past several months, governments, global health authorities, the corporate and state media, the culture industry, and other key components of “The New Normal Reich” have been quietly phasing out their “Covid restrictions,” rewriting “The Science,” rewriting history (i.e., the science and history they had previously rewritten), executing limited hangouts, and otherwise transitioning the masses out of “emergency” mode and into the New Normal. In other words, everything is going to plan. You can’t keep people whipped up into a state of full-blown hysteria indefinitely. When you’re radically destabilizing and restructuring a society, you hit them hard with the Shock-and-Awe for a few weeks, or months (or years in this case), and then you gently ease them into the new “reality.”

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Time is in the eye of the beholder.

Why Does Time Go Forwards, Not Backwards? (Henriques)

Here’s the problem: when you zoom in to the level of, say, one water molecule colliding and bouncing off another, the arrow of time disappears. If you watched a microscopic video of that collision and then you rewound it, it wouldn’t be obvious which way was forwards and which backwards. At the very smallest scale, the phenomenon that produces heat – collisions of molecules – is time-symmetric. This means that the arrow of time from past to future only emerges when you take a step back from the microscopic world to the macroscopic – something first appreciated by the Austrian physicist-philosopher Ludwig Boltzmann. “So the direction of time comes from the fact that we look at big things, we don’t look at the details,” says Rovelli.

“From this step, from the fundamental microscopic vision of the world to the coarse-grained, the approximate description of the macroscopic world – this is where the direction of time comes in. “It’s not that the world is fundamentally oriented in space and time,” Rovelli says. It’s that when we look around, we see a direction in which medium-sized, everyday things have more entropy – the ripened apple fallen from the tree, the shuffled pack of cards. While entropy does seem to be inextricably bound up with the arrow of time, it feels a bit surprising – perhaps even disconcerting – that the one law of physics that has a strong directionality of time built into it loses this directionality when you look at very small things. “What is entropy?” Rovelli says. “Entropy is simply how much we’re forgetting about the microphysics, how much we are forgetting about the molecules.”

If there is an arrow of time, where did it come from in the first place? “The answer is embedded in the beginning of the Universe,” says Carroll. “The answer is because the Big Bang had low entropy. And still, 14 billion years later we are swimming in the aftermath of that tsunami that started near the Big Bang. That’s why time has a direction for us.” The extraordinarily low entropy of the Universe at the Big Bang is both an answer and an enormous question. “The thing we understand the least about the nature of time, is why the Big Bang had low entropy, why the early Universe was like that,” says Carroll. “And I think honestly, as a working cosmologist, I think that my fellow cosmologists have dropped the ball on this one. They don’t really take that problem seriously enough.”

Read more …

 

 

 

 

 

8 minutes of Bobulinski

 

 

 

 


With the head of a vulture and body of a parrot, the Dracula Parrot is one of nature’s most beautiful and unnerving birds. Photo by Ondrej Prosick

 

 

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

 

 

 

Sep 222022
 


Pablo Picasso Head of a woman 1939

 

Russia Will Mobilize About 1.2% Of Her Mobilizational Potential (Saker)
Russia To Begin Partial Mobilization – Putin (RT)
Russia Announces Partial Mobilization (MoA)
Squelching the Noise about the Ukraine (9Bill)
Defensive West Smears Samarkand Summit (Lauria)
The Plot to Seize Russia & Make It a NATO Vassal – Martin Armstrong (G&E)
The Real US Agenda In Africa Is Hegemony (Escobar)
NATO’s “Green” Masochistic EUthanasia (Vilches)
10,000 anti-Russia Sanctions (Vilches)
Europe Implodes (Vilches)
Federal Reserve Chair Announces Another 75 Point Rate Hike (CTH)
The European Central Bank’s Zimbabwean Model (Hayes)
How the West Poisoned Its Money (Varoufakis)
Beyond the Peak (Greer)
House Democrats Take Ownership of Hunter (Turley)
EU Health Regulator Says Covid Pandemic Not Over (R.)

 

 

 

 

Miller

 

 

 

 

Detroit cringe (I can’t even listen to the end)

 

 

 

 

Biden. Trump.

 

 

 

 

“We are talking only about those soldiers who have an official status of “reserves” and all of them will have to undergo a special training before being sent to the Ukraine.”

Russia Will Mobilize About 1.2% Of Her Mobilizational Potential (Saker)

So, after lots of speculation, we now know that the Kremlin has decided to mobilize about 300’000 soldiers from a total mobilizational potential of 25’000’000 soldiers. That’s just a little over 1% of Russia’s mobilizational potential. We are talking only about those soldiers who have an official status of “reserves” and all of them will have to undergo a special training before being sent to the Ukraine. A few comments about this decision: It will take Russia a few months to gather and retrain (refresher courses) these forces and they will not be immediately available to protect the Lugansk, Donetsk, Zaporozhie and Kherson regions during the upcoming referendum on to whether to join Russia or not. The 3rd volunteer army corps is already deployed in the south and could greatly assist in this.

Putin and Shoigu gave several reasons for this decision, including the very long line of contact, the direct involvement of NATO personnel who are now running the Ukronazi regime in Kiev and the threats by the West to dismantle Russia. Shoigu indicated that the UAF lost about 50% of its personnel (over 100’000 soldiers out of a total potential of about 200’000). He also added that most of the Ukrainian weapons systems, which were of Soviet origin, was mostly destroyed. Russian KIAs are just under 6000 soldiers. Shoigu also clearly spelled out that “we are not so much fighting against the Ukraine but against NATO plus the united (collective) West“. Shoigu also mentioned that all of the NATO satellite capabilities (70 military and 200+ civilian satellites) are used against Russia right now.

Finally, Shoigu added that NATO high precision weapons are deliberately used by NATO commanders to terrorize civilians. In other words, Russia is preparing for an escalation of this war in the coming months. She is basically augmenting her forces to a level which could deal with a major NATO escalation in the Ukraine (and elsewhere as not all mobilized forces would have to be combat units; deploying more C4ISR capabilities, logistics/supply forces or civil affairs and counter-terrorism units would also make sense). The other big news of the day is, of course, that Russia will back and accept the outcome of the referendums in the four regions mentioned above.

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“The Russian leader pledged to support the plebiscites in terms of security and said his government would respect whatever outcomes they produce..”

Russia To Begin Partial Mobilization – Putin (RT)

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a partial military mobilization during an address to the nation on Wednesday morning. He said the Defense Ministry had recommended drawing military reservists into active service as the country faces a protracted conflict in Ukraine and Donbass. The measure is sensible and necessary under the circumstances, Putin said, considering that Russia is fighting “the entire Western military machine” in Ukraine. He has already signed an order for the call-up to start immediately. The move will see the armed forces draw on military reservists only, and those who have completed national service, the president added. He promised that they would be provided with additional training, along with all the benefits due to people involved in active duty.

Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu revealed some details about the mobilization in a separate statement on Wednesday. He said the ministry wanted to call to arms some 300,000 reservists, or just over 1% of Russia’s full mobilization potential. Putin has accused Kiev of backing away from peace talks with Moscow, which he said it had done on the instructions of its Western backers. Instead, the Ukrainian government has doubled down on military action, he said. “After certain compromises [with Moscow] were reached, Kiev received a de facto direct order to derail all agreements. More weapons were pumped into Ukraine. The Kiev regime deployed more gangs of international mercenaries and nationalists, military units trained to NATO standards and under de facto command of Western advisers,” Putin said.

Russian forces sent to Ukraine in February have secured a large portion of territory claimed by the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, as well as parts of Ukraine, he said. The resulting front line stretches over 1,000km, the president pointed out. He warned the US and its allies against ramping up pressure on Moscow. Western nations are openly pursuing a military defeat of Russia, seeking to push the country into insignificance and to loot its natural wealth, he stated. “Parts of Western elites use every effort to preserve their dominance. That is why they try to block and suppress any sovereign centers of development, so that they can continue to brutally force their will on other nations and peoples, to impose their pseudo-values,” he explained. “Their goal is to weaken, disunite and ultimately destroy our nation.”

Some senior officials in NATO states have even suggested that using tactical nuclear weapons against Russian troops would be justified, according to Putin. The president stressed that Moscow would not hesitate to retaliate to such an attack with its own nuclear weapons. If the territorial integrity of our nation is threatened, we will certainly use all the means that we have to defend Russia and our people. Putin also commented on the upcoming referendums in the two Donbass republics and two regions of Ukraine currently controlled to a large extent by Russian troops. The four entities are putting to a general vote a proposal to ask Moscow to accept them as new parts of the Russian Federation, with polling scheduled to start on Friday.

The Russian leader pledged to support the plebiscites in terms of security and said his government would respect whatever outcomes they produce. Russia’s goal is to protect civilians from the Ukrainian government, which had escalated the persecution of its opponents at home and had been using terrorist tactics against people living in Russia-controlled lands, Putin said.

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“..we can expect that the Russian forces will start to degrade Ukrainian infrastructure on a large scale.”

Russia Announces Partial Mobilization (MoA)

Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said (video, Sputnik report) that 300,000 reservist will be mobilized. Conscripts and people currently studying will not be send to Ukraine. He also said that, so far, 5,937 Russian soldiers have died during the war in Ukraine. (This number does not include the militia of the DPR and LPR, or the Wagner group, who have done most of the frontline work and thus have had higher losses.) Shoigu puts Ukrainian losses at some 62,000 killed and some 50,000 wounded. (I regard this as a low estimate.) Russia’s total military reserve, people who have previously gone through military training, is 25 million. It also has the equipment to arm those forces.

There are rumors that the Ukraine is preparing for an all out offensive, mobilizing and preparing new units from Kiev and further west for one big push against the Russian and allied forces. It will take a few months to prepare for this. The Ukraine will need much more equipment and ammunition from the ‘west’, including ‘western’ tanks and infantry fighting vehicles, and has yet to train troops to be able to use it. It is likely intending to start the offensive only in spring. The call up Russia announced now may have the intent to draw Kiev into a premature launch of its general offensive. The mobilized Russian troops will take about three months to be ready for war. Russia could thus launch its own offensive during the winter season. In the meantime constant defensive work will continue to severely degrade the Ukrainian units which are currently on or near the frontlines.

With a force of an additional 300,000 troops, far beyond the 100,000 to 150,000 engaged now in the war, the Russia forces could change their tactics from the slow grind that is happening now into a larger scale maneuver war with heavy strikes into the operational depth of the Ukrainian army. Belarus, allied with the Russian Federation, is also in the process of getting ready for war. It could, as it had threatened before, cut of the supply lines from the ‘west’ into the Ukraine in the western part of that country. Should current Ukrainian attacks on civilians and infrastructure in Russia and the Donbas regions continue, we can expect that the Russian forces will start to degrade Ukrainian infrastructure on a large scale. The electricity and railway networks would be the primary targets. s

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“The celebrations that will follow these regions joining Russia are likely to be massive: Crimea 2014 times ten.”

Squelching the Noise about the Ukraine (9Bill)

Earlier this morning, Vladimir Putin gave the order to call up army reservists. According to him, the nature and the goals of the Special Military Operation in the Ukraine remain the same. The reservists will be given contracts (they will in essence become salaried employees). Only those with relevant military experience and training will be called up. Shoigu went into further specifics: just 300.000 reservists will be called up in the first phase (roughly 1% of Russia’s total reservists), which will coincide with the normal, regularly scheduled annual training of reserves. They will be equipped, trained and sent in with the task of shoring up and straightening up the battle front. To be sure, they will also be called upon to provide security and to suppress enemy activity on both sides of the border.

Given the current configuration of the battle front, which includes a toehold on the Kharkov region, all of Lugansk, most of Donetsk, most of Zaporozhye and most of Kherson, their mission could conceivably come to include driving the Ukrainian forces out of the remainder of Donetsk and Kherson regions and perhaps setting up and maintaining a buffer zone to make it impossible for Ukrainian artillery to reach within what will soon become territory of the Russian Federation.
To this end, referenda will be held starting this Friday in all of the above formerly Ukrainian regions except for Kharkov, which is excluded. According to most recent opinion polling, the idea of joining the Russian Federation is very popular in all of the above: 94% in favor in Donetsk, 93% in Lugansk, 87% in Zaporozhye and 80% in Kherson.

And why wouldn’t these people want to be part of a peaceful, stable and prosperous state where their native language is the official language rather than stay within a failed state that has been fighting a civil war against them going on nine years? The celebrations that will follow these regions joining Russia are likely to be massive: Crimea 2014 times ten. Finally, I’d like to add a note on the Russian withdrawal from most of the Kharkov region. The region itself is of no consequence to Russia while the city of Kharkov, with its remaining population of around two million and with Ukrainian heavy armor and artillery hiding among high-rise buildings and using civilians as human shields, would be either a hard target, a humanitarian disaster, or both, were the Russians to try to conquer it. Also, although Kharkov is overwhelmingly Russian-speaking, these are some of the most heavily brainwashed, Westernized, Nazified Russian-speakers on the face of the planet and, from a Russian perspective, just not worth the bother.

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Good to see people other than Pepe Escobar cover this angle, too.

Defensive West Smears Samarkand Summit (Lauria)

The Shanghai Cooperation Council (SCO)’s summit in the Uzbek capital of Samarkand last Thursday and Friday was a world historical event for the forces creating this separate world representing the majority of humanity. Major economic deals were concluded and Beijing and Moscow further strengthened their budding alliance. In what should be a worrying sign for Washington, many of its Middle East allies, which have also rejected U.S. pressure to sanction Russia, have applied to join the SCO. For years the West rejected overtures from Russia and China to collaborate in a multipolar world. But that would mean giving up its dominant position, maintained from overtly colonial days. Instead the U.S.-led West pushes for total domination. So rather than acknowledge that its attempt to destroy Russia’s economy and bring down its government has instead led to economic chaos in the West and a threat to its global position, Western leaders are doubling down.

By sanctioning Russian energy and other vital exports, and by shutting out its financial system, the West thought Russia would collapse. Instead Moscow has found markets in the world’s most populous nations so that its currency, its industry and its banking system have survived. The Western response to this growing challenge to its hegemony was reflected in the way Western media covered the Samarkand summit. On top of the dismissive tone of its reporting came distortion of facts that misled its Western audiences to the significance of what Samarkand means to the future. The Daily Telegraph began its report, headlined, “Isolated Putin left at Beijing’s mercy as his disastrous war backfires,” with an account about how Putin was humiliated because he was left waiting for the president of Kyrgyzstan. With the headline, “Putin and Xi plot a new world order to challenge America’s might,”

The Times of London took the same line, writing of “Russia’s dependence on China since its disastrous war in Ukraine.” CNN’s report sowed seeds of doubt about the SCO’s unity, writing about the summit from Hong Kong that the “Ukraine war risks exposing regional divisions.” The New York Times report filed from Washington and Beijing, sought to portray the “limits” of “cooperation” between Russia and China. None of these reports focused on an emerging world order that is leaving the U.S. on the outside looking in. Western media instead seized on a few words uttered to try to frame India and China as criticizing Russia’s war in Ukraine. They completely took out of context Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s words that “today’s era is not of war.” CNN reported:

“Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi appears to have directly rebuffed Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine, telling Russian President Vladimir Putin that now is not the time for war. In what was the latest in a series of setbacks for the Russian leader, Modi told him of the need to ‘move onto a path of peace’ and reminded him of the importance of ‘democracy, diplomacy and dialogue.’” After Putin told Modi during their public comments that Ukraine refuses to negotiate, Modi said, according to the English translation on India’s Foreign Ministry website, “I know that today’s era is not of war and we have spoken to you many times on the phone that democracy, diplomacy and dialogue are such things that touch the world. Today we will get a chance to discuss how we can move forward on the path of peace in the coming days.” It is clear that Modi was criticizing Ukraine for not negotiating, rather than criticizing Russia for the war.

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“The Great Reset is basically a debt default and the EU is a disaster that will fall apart.”

The Plot to Seize Russia & Make It a NATO Vassal – Martin Armstrong (G&E)

Martin Armstrong discusses his new book based on declassified documents where in the 1990s the West, NATO, and Russian oligarchy plotted to seize Moscow, loot Russia, and takeover its natural resources. Yeltsin turned to Putin who was not a communist and is not an oligarch. The Moscow apartment bombings or propaganda surrounding them being a false flag would likely have come from Boris Berezovsky. The Great Reset is basically a debt default and the EU is a disaster that will fall apart. At this point most of the attack on Russia is related to “climate change” and to shut down fossil fuels.

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I’m not as negative as Pepe about Guterres. Whatever his faults, I think he’s honestly trying to get the fertilizer to Africa.

The Real US Agenda In Africa Is Hegemony (Escobar)

In a rational environment, the 77th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) would discuss alleviating the trials and tribulations of the Global South, especially Africa. That won’t be the case. Like a deer caught in the geopolitical headlights, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres issued platitudes about a gloomy “winter of global discontent,” even as the proverbial imperial doomsayers criticized the UN’s “crisis of faith” and blasted the “unprovoked war” started by Russia. Of course the slow-motion genocide of Donbass russophone residents for eight years would never be recognized as a provocation. Guterres spoke of Afghanistan, “where the economy is in ruins and human rights are being trampled” – but he did not dare to offer context.

In Libya, “divisions continue to jeopardize the country” – once again, no context. Not to mention Iraq, where “ongoing tensions threaten ongoing stability.” Africa has 54 nations as UN members. Any truly representative UNGA meeting should place Africa’s problems at the forefront. Once again, that’s not the case. So it is left to African leaders to offer that much-needed context outside of the UN building in New York. As the only African member of the G20, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa recently urged the US not to “punish” the whole continent by forcing nations to demonize or sanction Russia. Washington’s introduction of legislation dubbed the Countering Malign Russian Activities in Africa Act, he says, “will harm Africa and marginalize the continent.”

South Africa is a BRICS member – a concept that is anathema in the Beltway – and embraces a policy of non-alignment among world powers. An emerging 21st century version of the 1960s Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) is strengthening across the Global South – and especially Africa – much to the revulsion of the US and its minions. Back at the UNGA, Guterres invoked the global fertilizer crisis – again, with no context. Russian diplomacy has repeatedly stressed that Moscow is ready to export 30 million tons of grain and over 20 million tons of fertilizer by the end of 2022. What is left unsaid in the west, is that only the importation of fertilizers to the EU is “allowed,” while transit to Africa is not.

Guterres said he was trying to persuade EU leaders to lift sanctions on Russian fertilizer exports, which directly affect cargo payments and shipping insurance. Russia’s Uralchem, for instance, even offered to supply fertilizers to Africa for free. Yet from the point of view of the US and its EU vassals, the only thing that matters is to counter Russia and China in Africa. Senegal’s President Macky Sall has remarked how this policy is leaving “a bitter taste.”

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I took three separate parts of Jorge Vilshes’ latest. Which is very long, I could have picked more pieces. Of course he helps himself by referencing one of my articles. 😉

NATO’s “Green” Masochistic EUthanasia (Vilches)

The German political class has torn up the social contract agreed with its constituents by swiftly ignoring the historical and most successful existential partnership established with Russia since decades ago. In parallel, Anglo-inspired unelected EU bureaucrats take turns to blindly attack Russia with suicidal Wagnerian style based on hollow virtue-signalling nonsense. Now, the German Vice-Chancellor and Minister for Economic Affairs Robert Habeck (a former mediocre poetry translator…) finally and “bitterly” has admitted that Germany — and thus all of Europe — relies on ´cheap energy from Russia´ or else it´d trigger ”the collapse of energy providers” with a dire ´Lehman moment´.

This would crash the German and European economies with widespread bankruptcies unleashed by margin calls as later explained. Thus the “green” solution now found for this Made-In-Europe mess is a deeper and longer proxy Ukraine war, über-high price inflation, $ 500 billion in subsidies for starters with more coming, new ad hoc high taxes and un-applicable price caps in a supply-driven market … with scarcity all around and “no matter what voters may think or how hard their life may get” (sic). So, European businesses will fail per the terrible damage induced all along upstream supply lines including food and fuels. As brilliantly worded by Rachel Mardsen…“The West cut itself off from its sourcing in order to play geopolitics”… and then blame Russia and supposed “extremist enemies of the state”.

So, if recent declarations from German Foreign Minister Annalena (“Kobold”) Baerbock are of any guide, we shall soon witness street crowds blossoming in Europe. With circumvolutionary style, the EU Commission is now also trying to convince everyone that Europe will become “greener” in a hurry. Actually, with its lignite-fired re-commissioned power stations – the largest ever single source of pollution – Europe will turn “browner” fast, not “greener” thus setting the worst possible example to the rest of the world.It also contradicts its supposed ´moral high ground´ Green Plan. Still, EC spokesman Eric Mamer proudly stated that “The Ukraine invasion will help us speed up our move away from fossil fuels”.

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“And just like small children do, EU leaders still won´t admit it´s bed-time.”

10,000 anti-Russia Sanctions (Vilches)

The EU and the US imposed crippling sanctions on Russia which now finds it impossible – for instance – to comply with energy delivery to Europe. This in turn affects the European entire industry & trade including medicines, fuels, food, heating and everything in between. So the EU complains that Russia is using this energy non-delivery ´excuse´ as a weapon. Actually, sanctions restrict or prohibit trade of anything and everything with Russia from chips to flowers, and also disconnect Russian banks from SWIFT plus block money transfers, penalize all Russian cargo insurance, prohibit Western vessels at Russian ports and access of Russian ships to Europe. So a case in point for nat-gas non-delivery is the NS1 turbines mandatory maintenance/repairs. Contractually, Siemens is the only party allowed to touch them but sanctions do not allow their access per “Contract Violations”.

Europe keeps playing Russian roulette with itself insisting on the game plan of (1) provoking and supporting armed conflict with Russia (2) confiscating Russian assets (2) applying crippling sanctions on everything ´Russian´ (3) betting the farm on militarily winning the Ukraine war — how ??? (4) attempting a regime change in Russia (5) benefit from the spoils (6) simultaneously require Russians to provide whatever the EU may need, or else…??? (7) improvise highly dangerous experiments with well-proven European business models and European livelihoods at stake.

And just like small children do, EU leaders still won´t admit it´s bed-time. So now all that´s left for Main Street Europe is not winning anything other than freezing temperatures, far less food and fuels, ultra high price inflation of anything and everything, and plenty of hardship and discontent. But them all just keep re-arranging the chairs on the deck of an EU sinking Titanic while the orchestra enthusiastically keeps on playing one Strauss vals after another. True enough, Europe is trying its best to unnecessarily divorce Russia. But per Bloomberg – not exactly a pro-Russian mouthpiece — the EU sanctions and new taxes badly hurt Europe while Russia keeps ever improving its geopolitics and finances.

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“..as per the German Vice-Chancellor Robert Habeck´s own words, “just expect the worst“. Meaning areas with no energy, no fuels, no power at any price, period. Or as plain Germans would have it, just expect “kaputt”.

Europe Implodes (Vilches)

Very soon EU sanctions on Russia will start consuming the Europe we know with an ever more self-sufficient and growing Russia just watching the unfortunate scene. For instance, German SMB “Mittelstand” (99% of German GDP) will bankrupt or strain badly. The fact remains that no one has explained exactly what is to be finally gained with the EUthanizing sanctions and new taxes which are not really hurting Russia but are very seriously hurting Europeans and — indirectly — the rest of the world. “Russia rakes in more oil revenue than ever” says the Wall Street Journal by exporting almost as much crude as it did before the conflict in Ukraine… but at much higher prices.

“Now Russia has new buyers, new means of payment, new traders and new ways of financing exports”. By the way, current electricity prices in Germany are already almost ten times higher than a year ago — and keep rising – while the EU’s energy market is rattled by fears over whether highly unstable power plants will be able to provide enough electricity this winter. So it´s not just a matter of even higher prices as grid “wherewithal” is at stake with simply not enough energy available. Unmanageable price inflation is thus unstoppable. From fertilizer to aluminum production and every single commodity in between are all being seriously hindered by current ( self-inflicted ) truly soaring European energy costs.

It´s simple, and as per the German Vice-Chancellor Robert Habeck´s own words, “just expect the worst“. Meaning areas with no energy, no fuels, no power at any price, period. Or as plain Germans would have it, just expect “kaputt”. So this “new” German and European business model does not impress or fly well. And even on the basis of self-righteous exceptionalistic ideologies and newly-found virtuous ´moral´ arguments, current immolation of defenseless Europeans is a nonsensical price to be payed with this freezing green checkmate. Because there are no quick, ready-made, valid replacements of many / most Russian produce Europe depends upon, there is no real grass-roots political support either, and politicians cannot expect people to go along under the extreme hardship conditions soon to come.

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The central banks are not in control.

Federal Reserve Chair Announces Another 75 Point Rate Hike (CTH)

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell announced another 75-point increase in federal interest rates today. This is the third consecutive 0.75 percentage point increase. Additionally, Fed policymakers have pledged to continue raising rates as high as 4.6% in 2023. While Powell walked through his reasoning to continue targeting inflation by lowering consumer demand, not once in any of his remarks did he mention energy policy driving up the cost of materials and goods. The Great Pretending continues.:

The Fed chair is trying to manage the economic policy transition by reducing economic activity to match intentionally diminished energy supplies. Lowering economic activity drops demand for energy. Unfortunately, as admitted by Powell on August 26, 2022, in Jackson Hole, this means a period of “some pain” for Americans as the central banks join together in an effort to lower consumption. What does “some pain” mean? It means lower incomes, higher prices, lowered standards of living and more scarce resources. During this transition to owning nothing and being happy about it, the pain is your wealth being stripped as the economy is intentionally diminished.


We will not be able to afford much; we won’t be able to afford the foods we want; we will not be able to purchase anything except the essentials, and those essentials will cost much more; we won’t be able to vacation, travel, or enjoy recreational activities; we won’t be able to afford any indulgences; but at the end of the process, we will learn to live more meager existences based on lowered expectations needed for sustaining the planet. Pay no attention to the elites who don’t have those concerns, comrade.

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“..Albion is really in squeaky bum time…”

The European Central Bank’s Zimbabwean Model (Hayes)

Though the function of European, German, Japanese and Zimbabwean central banks is to enable the credibility and efficiency of the financial side of their respective economies so that the real side of their economies may achieve the nation’s broader macro economic goals, NATO’s central banks have obviously and disastrously abandoned those tasks for reasons this article makes apparent. Because Zimbabwe, like Germany’s Weimar Republic before it, has reached annual inflation rates of 90 sextillion per cent a year, Europe should not be emulating the financial and economic basket case of Harare. Whatever about Zimbabwe, Germany has been famously down this road before and, in a total reversal of earlier post-war policies, seems determined to traverse it again. The European Central Bank, based in Frankfurt, is printing euros as quickly as their colleagues in Zimbabwe are printing Zimbabwean dollars, as the Confederates printed their Greybacks and as Weimar printed their famously worthless marks.

Although Weimar’s woes were many, two of the most pertinent were that the Kaiser borrowed immensely to fund his armies, whose victories were supposed to enable him to repay his nation’s debts, and that the Western allies bled defeated Germany’s resources dry, thus opening the way for Herr Hitler once Weimar fell. Europe’s central banks are following this very policy today. They are doling out billions to ease energy bills, to bribe farmers and, most notoriously, to feed the money laundering Ponzi scheme that is Zelensky’s Kiev junta. The money supply, at more than 15 trillion euros, is at record levels and real interest rates are in negative terrain, pauperizing pensioners but failing to kick start their fuel starved economies. Inflation,.Germany’s bane, is again on the march as too far much money is in search of far too few bags of fire wood; and English toilet paper has increased in price by 50% in the last few months, Albion is really in squeaky bum time.

As the European Central Bank’s leaders presently have no other card to play, they must think their printing presses are enough to prevail in Ukraine and to allow Europeans to both eat and heat themselves this winter. Not only is that wishful thinking on the part of ECB President Christine Lagarde, the ‘multi cultural’ Parisian, who previously fronted the IMF and who held senior Ministerial positions in the French government but it betrays her fundamental ignorance about monetary policy. The main aim of the euro was to have the stability of the German mark and the Dutch guilder and not to be as volatile as Lagarde’s French franc, which was devalued four times since 1945. Unlike Lagarde, the Central Bank of the Federal Republic of Germany, along with that of Japan, seemed to have understood monetary policy, which is best seen as being like the throttle of a motorbike which must, when necessary, allow more fuel to enter the economic engine but which also must not flood it by drowning it in Zimbabwean dollars, French francs, Confederate Greybacks or Lagardean euros.

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“Today, there is no optimal interest rate that will restore the balance between money demand and money supply ..”

How the West Poisoned Its Money (Varoufakis)

Negative prices make sense for bads, not goods. When a factory wants to remove toxic waste, it charges a negative price for it: its managers pay someone to get rid of it. But when central banks begin to treat money like car manufacturers treat spent sulfuric acid, or nuclear power stations their radioactive wastewater, one knows that something is rotten in the kingdom of financialized capitalism. Some commentators now hope that Western money is being purified in the flames of inflation and interest-rate hikes. But inflation is not driving the poison out of the West’s money system. After more than a decade of addiction to poisoned money, no obvious detoxification method presents itself. Inflation today is not the same beast the West faced in the 1970s and early 1980s.

This time around, it threatens labor, capital, and governments in ways that it could not 50 years ago. Back then, labor was organized enough to demand wage increases that averted a cost-of-living crisis, and neither states nor private corporations relied on free money to keep going. Today, there is no optimal interest rate that will restore the balance between money demand and money supply that does not trigger a massive wave of private and public bankruptcy. That is the long-term price of poisoned money. The US government faces the impossible dilemma of curbing domestic inflation and forcing Corporate America and many friendly governments into a solvency crisis that will threaten America’s own stability.

Things are far worse in the eurozone, where policymakers refused to do the obvious once Europe’s banks had failed after 2008: establish a proper federation’s foundation – a fiscal union. Instead, they let the European Central Bank do “whatever it takes” to save the euro. Only by poisoning its own money could the ECB keep the euro show on the road. Today, the ECB owns huge quantities of Italian, Spanish, French, even Greek debt that it can no longer justify holding as a means of achieving its inflation target, but which it cannot renounce without calling the euro’s existence into question.

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The archdruid finishes off nuclear power.

Beyond the Peak (Greer)

Coal had two world-changing effects. The first, the one everyone thinks of, is that it could be used to power steam engines, replacing wind, water, and muscle power first in dozens, then in hundreds, and finally in thousands of uses. The second, less widely known but just as dramatic, is that it could be used via the Bessemer process to produce steel in previously unimaginable amounts. Steel plus steam power drove the industrial revolution, sent railroads scything across continents and steamships driving through oceans, and transformed human life in a galaxy of ways.

Then, about the time coal reserves started to run short, petroleum (and its gaseous form, natural gas) came into general use. More chemically complex than coal, petroleum had even more net energy, and shifted the industrial revolution into overdrive. Airplanes, automobiles, plastics, industrial lubricants, the entire modern chemical industry—the list just keeps on going. Lewis Mumford, one of the twentieth century’s most insightful students of energy and civilization, argued that the distinction between coal-fired technologies and petroleum-fueled technologies was significant enough to define a change of eras: he called the coal period the Paleotechnic Era, and the petroleum period the Neotechnic Era.

The assumption all along was that petroleum would eventually run short and have to be replaced by something else, leading to a third technic era. By 1950 nearly everyone assumed that what would replace it was nuclear power. You have to read books from that time to get a sense of just how inevitable the coming nuclear era was thought to be. Even avant-garde ecological thinkers treated nuclear power as the next inevitable thing. Pick up any of the works of Paolo Soleri, Frank Lloyd Wright’s most innovative student, who imagined humanity settling in gigantic city-sized buildings called arcologies so that the natural world could be allowed to thrive elsewhere. Each of his arcologies was supposed to be powered by its own nuclear power plant.

That, in turn, was where the dream ran off the rails, because it turned out that nuclear power doesn’t pay for itself. It’s not economically viable, because its net energy is so low. Thus it wasn’t Chernobyl or Fukushima Daiichi that brought the nuclear dream to a grinding halt, it was a long series of financial disasters suffered by utilities that got suckered into the nuclear hoopla, above all the bankruptcy of the Washington Public Power Supply System (WPPSS, unfondly remembered as “Whoops!” by the many thousands who lost money on it).

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“If Republicans take the House as expected in the midterms, the Democrats now effectively took ownership of Hunter — a political proprietary claim that few would relish.”

House Democrats Take Ownership of Hunter (Turley)

House Democrats on the Oversight Committee took a vote on Tuesday that could come back to haunt them. All of the 23 Democrats voted not to inquire into the influence peddling scheme of Hunter Biden and the Biden family. Rep. James Comer (R-KY) proposed a “resolution of inquiry” in light of growing evidence of not just a possible multimillion dollar influence peddling operation by Hunter and his uncle, but the knowledge of his father, President Joe Biden. At a minimum, it appears that President Biden’s repeated public denials of any knowledge of these dealings is false. Yet, the Democrats blocked any inquiry into the corruption. If Republicans take the House as expected in the midterms, the Democrats now effectively took ownership of Hunter — a political proprietary claim that few would relish.

The vote comes after 33 senators asked Attorney General Merrick Garland to appoint a special counsel in the matter, a call that I have repeatedly made in prior columns for over two years. Rep. Carolyn Maloney, the chairwoman of the House Oversight Committee, called the resolution a “nakedly partisan effort” and accused Republicans of being “obsessed” with Hunter Biden. The vote, however, reveals a blind avoidance by Democrats of a corrupt scheme that brought in millions for the Biden family and may have benefitted the President himself. Even if no criminal acts are charged, the foreign dealings of Hunter and his uncle were clearly corrupt and leveraged access to Joe Biden to acquire windfall payments from governments and their surrogates. There is no good faith basis to refuse to investigate such a scheme designed to influence U.S. policy and policymakers.

Why wouldn’t the Congress want to know if there was a multimillion dollar influence peddling scheme reaching the very top of our government, including allegations of the involvement of foreign intelligence figures? The vote, however, does bring a modicum of clarity at long last. The House Democrats are now on record as actively blocking efforts to investigate this massive influence peddling scheme. The implications of that vote will likely become more clear if the House switches hands after the midterm elections. The Democratic members are not alone in such a reckoning. The mainstream media has been clearly moving to re-position itself in anticipation of possible criminal charges after years of blocking or downplaying the story.

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I honestly don’t understand how anyone can promote more vaccines after the New England Journal of Medicine reported Covid Vaccine Destroys Natural Immunity just last week.

EU Health Regulator Says Covid Pandemic Not Over (R.)

An official at the European Union’s drugs regulator said on Tuesday the Covid-19 pandemic was not over, contradicting US President Joe Biden, and that a planned vaccination campaign in the region during the cold season was key to fighting it. “We in Europe still consider the pandemic as ongoing and it’s important that member states prepare for rollout of the vaccines and especially the adaptive vaccines to prevent further spread of this disease in Europe,” the European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) Chief Medical Officer Steffen Thirstrup told a media briefing, referring to vaccines targeting specific strains of the virus. He was asked to comment on Biden’s remark in an interview broadcast on Sunday that “the pandemic is over”. “I cannot obviously answer why President Biden came to that conclusion,” Thirstrup said.


The World Health Organization has said the pandemic remains a global emergency but the end could be in sight if countries use the tools at their disposal. During the media briefing, EMA officials reaffirmed a call by the agency’s Executive Director Emer Cooke made last week in a Reuters Next Newsmaker interview that people in Europe should take whatever Covid-19 booster is available and recommended to them in the coming months. Apart from the original Covid vaccines, the EMA has in recent weeks endorsed a number of vaccines adapted to the Omicron variant of the virus for use as booster shots to ease the burden from a feared surge in infections during autumn and winter in Europe. The EMA’s head of vaccines strategy, Marco Cavaleri, said the agency was also looking into the use of the adapted shots as a primary course of vaccination and that there were discussions on the types of data that could support such an approval.

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Fox MV

 

 

Sociopath
https://twitter.com/i/status/1572284911268003840

 

 

 

 

Hasty

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

Sep 212022
 


Max Ernst Untitled 1913

 

Russian Lawmaker Reveals Mobilization Plans (RT)
Checkmate (Schryver)
Four Occupied Ukraine Regions Plan Imminent ‘Votes’ On Joining Russia (G.)
Russia Will Support Donbass Referendums – Duma Speaker (RT)
Kiev Vows To Use Force Against Breakaway Regions (RT)
Peaceful Solution To Ukraine Crisis Currently Not Possible – Russia (RT)
The West Is Waging A War To Destroy Russia (Kornilov)
US General Claims Huge Ukrainian Successes In Air (RT)
Ukraine Unlikely To Get US F-16s Soon – Politico (RT)
Germany’s Die Linke On Verge Of Split Over Sanctions On Russia (G.)
Europe’s Economy And Living Standards Are Plummeting (OR)
Has Biden Passed The Point Of No Return In Provoking China? (Fomenko)
The Worst Socioeconomic & Geopolitical Crisis in History – Celente (USAW)
Americans Drowning In Long-Term Credit Card Debt (ZH)
America’s Open Wound (Edward Snowden)

 

 

With a 12-hour delay, Vladimir Putin has declared a partial mobilization in Russia (300,000 reservists?!), citing the need to protect a 1,000 km frontline with Ukraine. Details will be forthcoming. Lots of rumors swirling around, the most interesting of which is perhaps that Central Bank Governor Elvira Nabiullina allegedly submitted her resignation. A condition for her staying on was no mobilization. How she feels about this partial one we will find out.

One thing that is obvious is that it is no longer Russia vs Ukraine. That 1,000 km frontline requires a lot of non-Ukrainian forces and weapons. Obviously, the upcoming elections in four Ukraine regions, perhaps as soon as this weekend, carry the potential of Russia needing to protect these regions vs attacks. They have largely Russian populations, and Putin is sworn to protect these people.

 

 

 

 

Excess death
https://twitter.com/i/status/1572032165478801408

 

 

 

 

Szamuely

 

 

 

 

This is from yesterday, well before Putin’s speech at 8 am Moscow time:

Russian Lawmaker Reveals Mobilization Plans (RT)

Amending the criminal code with provisions for mobilization, martial law and wartime doesn’t necessarily mean Moscow is about to declare a draft – or war, Russian lawmaker Andrey Kartapolov clarified on Tuesday. Kartapolov, who chairs the Defense Committee of the State Duma, was the co-author of the amendments the lower house of the Russian parliament approved on Tuesday. Among other things, they establish criminal penalties for crimes committed during “wartime,” “martial law,” or a “mobilization period.” Fears that this means a mobilization are “absolutely unjustified,” Kartapolov told the Parliamentary Gazette.

“There will be no general mobilization. The president has spoken about this more than once and is directly speaking through his press secretary Dmitry Peskov and many other politicians at the federal level.” Having a law is not the same thing as mobilization, Kartapolov argued, adding that the amendments were “not specifically linked to the special military operation” in Ukraine, but were designed to function “for a long time, at least until they are no longer needed.” The adopted amendments include harsher punishments for looting or going AWOL during wartime, or committing any crime during a period of military mobilization. They also criminalize the sabotage of defense contracts.

Kartapolov also confirmed that the militias of the Donbass republics would be integrated into the Russian military, in case Donetsk and Lugansk vote to join Russia later this week. This would “significantly change the situation in a number of ways,” he said. Donetsk and Lugansk declared independence in 2014, after a US-backed coup in Kiev. Moscow recognized them in February, shortly before launching the military operation in Ukraine. Territories of Zaporozhye and Kherson under the control of the Russian and Donbass troops also announced on Tuesday that they would vote to join Russia later this week.

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Will Schryver thinks it’s all a done deal.

Checkmate (Schryver)

It is a foregone conclusion that Lugansk, Donetsk, Zaporozhye, and Kherson regions of the former Novorossiya will be re-assimilated into the Russian motherland. Odessa will follow at some point in the not-so-distant future. And the empire’s refusal to acknowledge the legitimacy of these developments will prove utterly irrelevant. Western media and puppet politicians can scream “Russian aggression” and “sham election” all they want, but the unadorned fact is that these regions are overwhelmingly ethnic Russians whose collective desire is to be reunited with what they view as a powerful and ascendant Russia.

In conjunction with this shrewd political act, Vladimir Putin will almost certainly announce later today a major escalation of Russian military action in Ukraine – very likely at least a partial mobilization of Russia’s as yet untapped military might. This will result in a rapid acceleration in the ongoing process of annihilation of the Ukrainian military, its mountains of NATO weaponry, and its numerous “foreign volunteers”. This, of course, presents the empire with an existential dilemma. The defeat of NATO’s proxy army, weapons, and leadership in Ukraine at the hands of the Russians will be viewed all around the world as an unprecedented defeat of American hegemony; a watershed moment that will carry with it profound geopolitical consequences.

As I have argued for months now, it will mean the end of NATO as a credible military alliance. It will mean the end of the European Union as presently constituted. In other words, a decisive defeat of the empire’s aspirations in Ukraine will be viewed in Washington, London, and Brussels as an existential threat – which it is. And, as such, it is difficult for me to envision them submissively acquiescing to the outcome.

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Where better to turn for background info than the tried and tested Guardian?

Four Occupied Ukraine Regions Plan Imminent ‘Votes’ On Joining Russia (G.)

Four Russian-occupied regions in Ukraine have said they are planning to hold “referendums” on joining the Russian Federation in a series of coordinated announcements that could indicate the Kremlin has made a decision to formally annex the territories. Moscow may be betting that a formal annexation would help halt Russian territorial losses, after a successful Ukrainian counteroffensive that has reclaimed large portions of territory in the Kharkiv region. The occupied Donetsk and Luhansk regions have said they are ready to hold “polls”, which will be universally viewed as rigged, as soon as this week, with announcements also made in Kherson and Zaporizhzhia. Some Russian media have reported that Vladimir Putin may deliver a speech on Tuesday evening on a potential annexation.

As Ukrainian troops begin making advances in the Luhansk region, Russia may be worried that it can’t win on the battlefield and threaten a potential escalation, including a formal declaration of war or even a nuclear attack, by claiming to defend its own territory. “Everything that’s happening today is an absolutely unequivocal ultimatum to Ukraine and the West,” wrote Tatiana Stanovaya, an expert on Kremlin politics and founder of R.Politik. “Either Ukraine retreats or there will be nuclear war.” “To guarantee ‘victory’, Putin is ready to hold referendums immediately in order to obtain the right (in his understanding) to use nuclear weapons to defend Russian territory.” Also on Tuesday, the Russian state Duma passed new amendments to the legal code that directly refer to “mobilisation” and “martial law” and introduce criminal liability for desertion or wilful surrender during that period.

The Kremlin has so far resisted a full mobilisation, likely due to fear of a political backlash. Now, however, it seems that the Kremlin may be willing to go further than before, including using nuclear blackmail in order to freeze the war and solidify its territorial gains in Ukraine. The decision has not been publicly adopted by the Kremlin or Vladimir Putin. However, senior Russian officials, including the former president Dmitry Medvedev, have supported calls for the referendums. In a post on his Telegram page, Medvedev, the deputy head of Russia’s security council, said that the referendums would “completely change the vector of Russia’s development for decades”. They would also prevent a future Russian leader from reversing Russian support for the Ukrainian regions, he wrote. “That is why these referendums are so feared in Kyiv and in the west,” he wrote. “That is why they need to be carried out.”

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Remember that Russia declined to recognize the 2014 votes in Luhansk and Donetsk until February 2022.

Russia Will Support Donbass Referendums – Duma Speaker (RT)

Should the Donbass republics vote to join the Russian Federation after holding public referendums, Moscow will respect that decision, Vyacheslav Volodin, chairman of the lower house of parliament, said on Tuesday. During a plenary session of the State Duma, Volodin stated: “if in the course of a direct declaration of will they say they want to be part of Russia, we will support them.” He added that the people of Donbass “must understand today that we expect them to freely express their will.” Volodin’s comments came as the leaders of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics announced that they will be holding referendums on joining Russia, with the votes set to take place between 23 and 27 September.


The Russian-controlled Kherson and Zaporozhye regions of Ukraine have also confirmed they will be holding similar referendums on the same dates. The Deputy leader of the Kherson military-civilian administration, Kirill Stremousov, stated that residents want to join the Russian Federation as soon as possible because they fear being left behind, and want “guarantees” that Moscow will protect them from Kiev’s forces.

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Perhaps the main reason for the partial mobilization.

Kiev Vows To Use Force Against Breakaway Regions (RT)

Senior officials in Kiev have dismissed as irrelevant plans for a number of current and former Ukrainian regions to hold referendums on whether to join Russia. Andrey Yermak, President Vladimir Zelensky’s chief of staff, described the proposed votes as “blackmail” by Moscow. “This is what fear of defeat looks like. The enemy is afraid and uses primitive manipulations,” he said in a post on social media on Tuesday. Yermak added that “Ukraine will solve the Russian question,” insisting this could be done “only by force.” Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba also downplayed news of the upcoming referendums, dismissing the move as a “sham.”


“Ukraine has every right to liberate its territories and will keep liberating them whatever Russia has to say,” he tweeted. The condemnations and threats came in response to bids by the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, as well as Ukraine’s Kherson and Zaporozhye regions, to hold referendums on the question of joining the Russian Federation. The votes could take place as early as this week. Kiev previously threatened any person who takes part in such a plebiscite with criminal prosecution. Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Irina Vereshchuk said participants could be sent to prison for up to 12 years.

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Crystal clear.

Peaceful Solution To Ukraine Crisis Currently Not Possible – Russia (RT)

The armed conflict in Ukraine cannot be resolved through negotiations under current circumstances, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday, as cited by Interfax. Asked if there was a path towards a diplomatic settlement, Peskov said that “at the moment, such a prospect cannot be observed,” the news agency reported. Moscow blamed Kiev for the suspension of peace talks. In late March, the two parties discussed a draft peace agreement, which would make Ukraine a neutral state in exchange for security guarantees given by major world powers. However the Ukrainian government ended talks in April, after accusing Russian troops of having committed war crimes, an allegation that Moscow said was based on falsified evidence.


Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has since declared that his country will only be satisfied by defeating Russia on the battlefield and pushing its forces from the entire territory claimed by Kiev. That includes Crimea, the former Ukrainian region that rejoined Russia after an armed coup in Kiev in 2014. Moscow considers Crimea to be under its sovereignty and its status not subject to discussions. Russian President Vladimir Putin commented on Kiev’s position last week stating: “Zelensky said publicly … that he is not ready to talk to Russia. Well, if he is not, fine by us.” Earlier this month, Ukraine launched a major military counter-offensive in the north east, forcing Russian troops to pull back from some areas. Another of Kiev’s attempts to make gains in the south was far less successful and reportedly resulted in serious casualties and loss of military equipment.

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A friend pointed out that RT’s articles pop up at other places, a sort of workaround of the ban. For most articles that is not necessary, since they’re short and I can just copy them. For longer ones, I’ll try to use for instance this site, azerbaycan24.com.

The West Is Waging A War To Destroy Russia (Kornilov)

And here comes Bucha 2.0: Another provocation where Ukraine has allegedly discovered “mass graves of victims” shortly after Russian troops have withdrawn. This time in Izium. What it amounts to is clear evidence that along with the development of the military conflict in Ukraine, the informational “special” operation against Russia is intensifying. It’s not even about Kiev’s reaction – officials there concoct primitive fakes against our state and the army non-stop, around the clock. The indicator here is the way in which this provocation was immediately picked up by Western politicians, who are already urgently calling for an “international tribunal” to punish Russia. Meanwhile, the West’s media, in a united push, is putting unfounded statements about “mass executions and torture in Izium” on its front pages.

[..] Now the masks are being thrown off and the cadre of Russophobes can openly articulate their long-held dreams. The Daily Telegraph recently featured the former NATO commander in Europe, General Ben Hodges, in a high-profile article about preparing for Russia’s disintegration. Hodges, who is employed by CEPA – a lobby group bankrolled by US arms contractors and NATO – is arguably one of the most active ‘talking heads’ about the Ukrainian crisis on Western television right now. The general hopes the collapse of our state will be fueled by our ethnic diversity and he hopes that Western economic sanctions will create a situation in which it will be impossible to feed 144 million people. The American has clearly not thought how these arguments could also be applied to his home country, which has been torn apart by racial divisions in recent years.

Below Hodges, the idea has been cheerfully picked up by less well-known figures operating on the ideological field of Russophobia. The Polish magazine New Eastern Europe published an article about deconstructing Russia and reconstructing the “post-Russian space,” calling it a risky but inevitable scenario. The authors called on the West to lead the process of our state’s disintegration right away. This is echoed by the Canadian-British professor Taras Kuzio on the pages of the Atlantic Council, a NATO-aligned pressure group and the main mouthpiece of Western Russophobes. He, too, cheerfully declares that the process of “the collapse of Putin’s Russian empire” has begun.

Hodges’ theses are repeated almost word for word by Estonia’s top Kremlinologist Vladimir Yushkin on the pages of the website of the International Centre for Defence and Security. However, he adds nonsense about the allegedly developing “colonization of Siberia by the Chinese” –which tells us he doesn’t know how to use statistics.

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Anti-aircraft defenses on the ground. But a one-sided claim.

US General Claims Huge Ukrainian Successes In Air (RT)

Ukrainian forces have prevented Russia from gaining air superiority over the frontline in their country, while causing serious damage to Russian air power, a four-star US general reportedly claimed. Soviet-built anti-aircraft defenses fielded by Ukraine have managed to shoot down at least 55 Russian aircraft, Gen. James Hecker told the annual Air Force Association conference on Monday, as reported by Politico. The general, who commands the US Air Forces in Europe – Air Forces Africa (USAFE-AFAFRICA), spoke during a panel discussion about the conflict in Ukraine. Hecker said Ukraine’s use of anti-aircraft weapons has denied Russian ground forces the air support they needed. He said the situation has surprised Western military analysts. Ukraine is seeking to beef up its air defenses, and the general suggested that eastern European nations, who have old stockpiles of Soviet weapons, should transfer them to Kiev.


The top US official also claimed that Ukraine’s air force has mostly remained intact since the start of the conflict, retaining about 80% of its fleet, contrary to reports from Russia. The Russian military claims to have inflicted heavy losses on the Ukrainian air force throughout the conflict. As of Monday, it said it had destroyed 294 Ukrainian warplanes and 155 Ukrainian military helicopters. Part of the panel discussion focused on US efforts to arm Ukrainian warplanes with AGM-88 High Speed Radiation Missiles (HARM) anti-radiation missiles, which were recently included in US arms shipments to Kiev. Hecker said fitting the US-made weapons to Soviet-made aircraft “was quite an effort” for US military contractors and acknowledged that shooting them from F-16s was a better option, according to Breaking Defense outlet.

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“.. it could take two to three years before Kiev could actually get them..”

Ukraine Unlikely To Get US F-16s Soon – Politico (RT)

If the US decides to provide Ukraine with F-16 fighter jets, it could take two to three years before Kiev could actually get them. That’s according to a Politico report, citing US Air Force General James Hecker. Hecker, who heads US Air Forces in Europe – Air Forces Africa (USAFE-AFAFRICA) is said to have made the prediction during a speech on Monday at an annual Air Force Association conference. According to Politico, Hecker put the delay down to logistical and training issues, but said he believed that Ukraine could get the US-made warplanes sometime in the future, because “folks are starting to think more long term.” The outlet reported last week that the US government was considering sending F-16s and Patriot long-range anti-aircraft missiles to Ukraine, expecting that the conflict with Russia would last for years.


Washington has stepped up its arms shipments throughout the conflict, eventually agreeing to provide multi-launch rocket systems, such as HIMARS, as well as long-range artillery platforms. The US has been sending increasingly heavier weapons to Kiev, stating that it would provide military aid for as long as it takes to push Russian forces from every part of the territory that Ukraine claims under its sovereignty. However, the Pentagon has so far refrained from sending some of its more sophisticated weapons, such as heavy armor or fighter jets, instead agreeing to facilitate transfers of Soviet-era equipment from third countries such as Poland and the Czech Republic.

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“..how dumb is the idea that we can punish Putin by pushing millions of German families into poverty and destroy our economy..”

Germany’s Die Linke On Verge Of Split Over Sanctions On Russia (G.)

Germany’s Die Linke could split into two parties over the Ukraine war, as the ailing leftwing party’s indecisive stance over economic sanctions against Russia triggered a series of high-profile resignations this week. The German Left party’s future has hung in a precarious balance since it snuck into the national parliament last autumn under a special provision for parties that win three or more constituency seats. Should three of its 39 delegates resign from the party, Die Linke would lose its status as a parliamentary group and attached privileges over speaking times and committee memberships. Party insiders say such resignations are a matter of when, not if, after a week of vicious public in-fighting over a speech in which the former co-leader Sahra Wagenknecht accused the German government of “launching an unprecedented economic war against our most important energy supplier”.

Supporters of Wagenknecht, a controversial but prominent figurehead, are already hatching plans for a breakaway party to compete in the 2024 European elections, the German newspaper Taz reported this week. Such a split would be likely to spell the end of Die Linke, 15 years after it was founded in a merger between the successor to East Germany’s Socialist Unity party and former Social Democrats disillusioned by their party’s direction under Gerhard Schröder, and just under a decade after it formed the largest opposition force in the Bundestag’s 2013-17 term.

In her speech last Thursday, Wagenknecht had called chancellor Olaf Scholz’s left-leaning governing coalition “the stupidest government in Europe” because it imposed sanctions on Russia, which supplied over half of Germany’s gas needs before the start of the war in the spring. “Yes, of course the war in Ukraine is a crime”, Wagenknecht said. “But how dumb is the idea that we can punish Putin by pushing millions of German families into poverty and destroy our economy while Gazprom makes record profits?” The speech was greeted with applause not only by the Linke leadership but also by delegates of the far-right Alternative für Deutschland (AfD).

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“European products are becoming uncompetitive on the world market: their price is much higher because of the cost of electricity and gas.”

Europe’s Economy And Living Standards Are Plummeting (OR)

The ill-considered sanctions against Russia have exposed the most acute problems of Europe which is rapidly losing its economic power. A tremendous amount of businesses are on the verge of bankruptcy. A flood of migrants from Africa, the Middle East and Ukraine requires more and more budget spending. Funds are also being used to support the Kiev regime. As a result, Europe’s economies are deteriorating and living standards are plummeting. In Britain 60% of enterprises are on the verge of closing due to higher electricity prices. This is reported by the analytical group Make UK, representing the interests of British industry. 13% of British factories have reduced working hours and 7% are temporarily closing down. Electricity bills have risen by more than 100% compared to last year.

In Germany, according to the Leibniz Institute for Economic Research, the number of firms and individuals went bankrupt in August alone rose 26% compared to the same period last year. The figure was significantly higher than German analysts had forecast. According to experts, during the autumn the number of bankruptcies will only increase. This is connected with the increase of the cost of production processes, in particular with the rise in prices for energy. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz acknowledged that many Germans have faced with rising prices for fuel and food. Most countries in Europe were in a similar situation. But the authorities are sacrificing the quality of people’s lives in order to continue to exert pressure on Russia. At the same time, many experts believe the stopping of Nord Stream will cause Europe’s worst energy crisis in decades.

This circumstance has already caused a sharp rise of prices of energy resources on the European market. As a result, energy bills of European households have increased. According to Goldman Sachs’ analysts, its cumulative cost will peak in early 2023, increasing by 2 trillion euros. It has also led to a record depreciation of the European currency over the past 20 years. The increased cost of gas, heat and electricity has an adverse effect on the living standard of the people. But an even more dangerous problem is the falling liquidity of European products produced at the new cost of energy. European products are becoming uncompetitive on the world market: their price is much higher because of the cost of electricity and gas.

Attempts by EU leaders to introduce a price cap on energy from Russia have completely failed. European countries are themselves to blame for the problems they face this coming winter because of reduced gas supplies from Russia, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said. According to him, “Europe reaps what it sows”, while Turkey “has no problems with gas supplies”.

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As long as you don’t recognize Taiwan as an independent state, you’re meddling in the internal affairs of China.

Has Biden Passed The Point Of No Return In Provoking China? (Fomenko)

It’s not the first time Biden has made such direct comments regarding American involvement in a potential conflict. It’s actually the third time in a year. Yet each time, the White House has walked back on it stating the “policy has not changed” regarding the island. But at this point in time, it can hardly be described as a gaffe worth overlooking, and Beijing is no longer likely to see it that way. In their eyes, the US policy of “strategic ambiguity” is coming to an end, with America moving irreversibly toward the de-facto support of Taiwan independence to contain China. When the United States normalized relations with the People’s Republic of China in the 1970s and accepted the “One China Policy,”Congress quickly imposed the “Taiwan Relations Act” on the Presidency in order to legally entrench US commitment towards the island.

By stating that the US would support “peaceful reunification” but in the process was obligated to give the island a “means to defend itself”- the policy of strategic ambiguity was born, that is the lack of clarity as to whether the US would directly intervene in the event of a contingency. The US has made periodic weapons sales to the island which has enraged Beijing, yet things otherwise remained stable for decades bar one crisis in the 1990s. But now, we live in a completely different world. The US is increasingly abrogating its commitment to the “One China Policy” and “strategic ambiguity,” increasingly giving unconditional support to Taiwan with a view to obstructing reunification altogether. Whilst the US continues to speak of maintaining the “status quo” it is quite obvious that its actions have sought to completely undermine the equilibrium between the two by backing Beijing into a corner.

Nancy Pelosi’s highly provocative visit, and the scores of hawkish US congressmen who have flowed in after, talk of the US pre-emptively placing sanctions on China over Taiwan irrespective of whether it invades or not, and the advancing of the Taiwan Policy Act which aims to give Taipei billions in military aid. China’s stern response to these provocations, which involved considerable military exercises, did not deter the US or make it think twice at all. Rather, events in Ukraine – where Washington supports Kiev against Russia – have only emboldened the US to push forward with the Taiwan issue even more, precisely because it sits on the side lines and allows other countries to be destroyed whilst selling its arms and using mass media coverage to market it. Now, for example, Taiwan wants to buy HIMARS launchers from the US in 2023.

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“Nobody is talking about peace . . . and don’t you dare talk about peace. . . . We are being driven to war by mentally ill people . . . All they want is control.”

The Worst Socioeconomic & Geopolitical Crisis in History – Celente (USAW)

“We are facing the worst socioeconomic and geopolitical crisis in modern history. The Covid war, this happened and that happened because of the pandemic. There was no pandemic. This happened because of politicians, little pieces of scum crap . . . one after another said close down your business, don’t go outside, don’t go to the beach, close down the swings and don’t let kids go and play. You have a socioeconomic crisis, the likes of which are unprecedented, and the damage caused by the Covid war is incalculable. (The CV19 Vax is part of Covid War.) Office occupancy rates are at about 45% tops. So, all the businesses that depended on commuters are gone. 30% of dry cleaners are out of business.

No more happy hours. In New York City, there are about 1,300 less people that clean office buildings now. This is real. People forget that in 2019, Germany was going into a recession. There were protests and demonstrations going on all over the world. . . . People were taking to the streets and protesting a lack of basic living standards, government corruption, crime and violence. It was one of our top trends. This is before the Covid war. They artificially propped up the governments. It was the Federal Reserve and the central banksters. They artificially pumped up the economies. There is almost $8 trillion pumped into the U.S. economy by the government to artificially prop it up. . . .

When you look at the Covid war, the draconian, demonic mandates and lockdowns that they imposed on businesses, when you look at the Ukraine war, the sanctions and the stupid things they are doing, they are creating the worst socioeconomic and geopolitical crisis in modern history.” Celente points out, “Nobody is talking about peace . . . and don’t you dare talk about peace. . . . We are being driven to war by mentally ill people . . . All they want is control.”

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Let rates rise…

Americans Drowning In Long-Term Credit Card Debt (ZH)

In June we reported that consumer credit – particular revolving credit – was through the roof, as tapped-out consumers relied on credit cards to make ends meet. This has only gotten worse.. Acccording to an Aug. 30 report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, credit card balances increased by $46 billion from last year, becoming the second-biggest source of overall debt last quarter. While both student and car loans hit all time new highs at the end of the 1st quarter. And so it comes as no surprise from Bloomberg that more US consumers are saddled with credit card debt for longer periods of time. According to a survey by CreditCards.com released on Monday, 60% of credit card debtors have been holding this type of debt for at least a year, up 50% from a year ago, while those holding debt for over two years is up 40%, from 32%, according to the online credit card marketplace.

And while total credit-card balances remain slightly lower than pre-pandemic levels, inflation and rising interest rates are taking a toll on the already-stretched finances of US households. “About a quarter of respondents said day-to-day expenses are the primary reason why they carry a balance. Almost half cite an emergency or unexpected expense, including medical bills and home or car repair. The Federal Reserve is likely to raise interest rates for the fifth time this year next week. Credit-card rates are typically directly tied to the Fed Funds rate, and their increase along with a softening economy may lead to higher delinquencies. Total consumer debt rose $23.8 billion in July to a record $4.64 trillion, according to data from the Federal Reserve.” -Bloomberg. The Fed’s figures include credit card and auto debt, as well as student loans, but does not factor in mortgage debt.

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CIA.

America’s Open Wound (Edward Snowden)

Our glittering nation of laws observes this year two birthdays: the 70th anniversary of the National Security Agency, on which my thoughts have been recorded, and the 75th anniversary of the Central Intelligence Agency. The CIA was founded in the wake of the 1947 National Security Act. The Act foresaw no need for the Courts and Congress to oversee a simple information-aggregation facility, and therefore subordinated it exclusively to the President, through the National Security Council he controls. Within a year, the young agency had already slipped the leash of its intended role of intelligence collection and analysis to establish a covert operations division.

Within a decade, the CIA was directing the coverage of American news organizations, overthrowing democratically elected governments (at times merely to benefit a favored corporation), establishing propaganda outfits to manipulate public sentiment, launching a long-running series of mind-control experiments on unwitting human subjects (purportedly contributing to the creation of the Unabomber), and—gasp—interfering with foreign elections. From there, it was a short hop to wiretapping journalists and compiling files on Americans who opposed its wars. In 1963, no less than former President Harry Truman confessed that the very agency he personally signed into law had transformed into something altogether different than he intended, writing: “For some time I have been disturbed by the way CIA has been diverted from its original assignment. It has become an operational and at times a policy-making arm of the Government. This has led to trouble…”

Many today comfort themselves by imagining that the Agency has been reformed, and that such abuses are relics of the distant past, but what few reforms our democracy has won have been watered-down or compromised. The limited “Intelligence Oversight” role that was eventually conceded to Congress in order to placate the public has never been taken seriously by either the committee’s majority—which prefers cheerleading over investigating—or by the Agency itself, which continues to conceal politically-sensitive operations from the very group most likely to defend them.

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Dan Aykroyd SNL 1978
https://twitter.com/i/status/1572332575137402882

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Human chain

 

 

 

 

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