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Author Topic: 9/11 debate - enter at your own risk!  (Read 755078 times)

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I suppose one day we'll know whether John is right
about the Polonium in cigarettes.

The substance has been used by various "agencies"
for assassinations though.  The amount required is
very tiny and may not indicate an unusually high
radiation signature.


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The animal mind ALWAYS reacts to what it does not understand. This is what sets dogs barking. If you are going to tell the truth, you are going to have to be okay with barking dogs, because they will harry your passage until you pass through town.
Les Visible - 27 February 2020
   

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Udo Ulfkotte Blows the Whistle on Himself

http://www.uncommonthought.com/mtblog/archives/2014/10/13/yes-little-tim-.php

By Rowan Wolf,
October 13, 2014 6:47 AM

"Yes Little Tim, There Are Unexpected Folks Who Are With The CIA."

Dr. Udo Ulfkotte (picture left), a respected German journalist, editor, and a former advisor to the Kohl administration in Germany in the later 1990s, has written a new book (published in German, but translated) "Bought Journalism. How Politicians, Intelligence and High Finance Control German's Mass Media." (Kopp, Rottenburg am Neckar 2014). He was interviewed on RT's "Question More" program regarding his assertions that he worked for the CIA, and the German intelligence agency BNB.

"Well I've been a journalist for about 25 years. And I was educated to lie, to betray, and not to tell the truth to the public. But seeing right now within the last months how, how far um, how the German and American media tries to bring war to the people in Europe, to bring war to Russia, this is a point of no return, and I stand, I'm going to stand up and say um "It is not right what I have done in the past." Ah, to manipulate people to make propaganda against Russia. And it is not right what my colleagues do, and have done in the past, because they are bribed to betray the people - not only in Germany but all over Europe."

Vote all you want. The secret government won’t change.

The people we elect aren’t the ones calling the shots, says Tufts University’s Michael Glennon

By Jordan Michael Smith
October 19, 2014

The voters who put Barack Obama in office expected some big changes. From the NSA’s warrantless wiretapping to Guantanamo Bay to the Patriot Act, candidate Obama was a defender of civil liberties and privacy, promising a dramatically different approach from his predecessor.

But six years into his administration, the Obama version of national security looks almost indistinguishable from the one he inherited. Guantanamo Bay remains open. The NSA has, if anything, become more aggressive in monitoring Americans. Drone strikes have escalated. Most recently it was reported that the same president who won a Nobel Prize in part for promoting nuclear disarmament is spending up to $1 trillion modernizing and revitalizing America’s nuclear weapons.

Why did the face in the Oval Office change but the policies remain the same? Critics tend to focus on Obama himself, a leader who perhaps has shifted with politics to take a harder line. But Tufts University political scientist Michael J. Glennon has a more pessimistic answer: Obama couldn’t have changed policies much even if he tried.

Though it’s a bedrock American principle that citizens can steer their own government by electing new officials, Glennon suggests that in practice, much of our government no longer works that way. In a new book, “National Security and Double Government,” he catalogs the ways that the defense and national security apparatus is effectively self-governing, with virtually no accountability, transparency, or checks and balances of any kind. He uses the term “double government”: There’s the one we elect, and then there’s the one behind it, steering huge swaths of policy almost unchecked. Elected officials end up serving as mere cover for the real decisions made by the bureaucracy.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/ideas/2014/10/18/vote-all-you-want-the-secret-government-won-change/jVSkXrENQlu8vNcBfMn9sL/story.html

WJZ Exclusive: Baltimore Banker Reveals His Double Life As A CIA Agent
November 1, 2014 12:05 AM

http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2014/11/01/wjz-exclusive-baltimore-banker-reveals-his-double-life-as-a-cia-agent/

BALTIMORE (WJZ)– Baltimore banker and prominent businessman–that’s how we know Ed Hale. But in a WJZ exclusive, he reveals his double life.

Mary Bubala has the revealing details.

The secret and closed world of the CIA includes espionage, covert operatives, international surveillance—and Baltimore businessman Ed Hale.

“I was an agent for the CIA,” Hale said.

In a WJZ exclusive, Hale reveals his covert role inside the CIA.

“I was the perfect cover because I was all over the world with my vessels and trucking here in America, so I was the perfect person to take somebody and send them out to Afghanistan, Uzbekistan,” Hale said.

Hale probably looks familiar. He was the face of First Mariner Bank as chairman and CEO. He appeared in their commercials for years and is credited with developing the Canton Waterfront downtown. He owns the Baltimore Blast.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-official_cover
« Last Edit: 2014-11-07, 17:52:02 by evolvingape »


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Western News-Suppression about the Downing of MH-17 Malaysian Jet

http://rinf.com/alt-news/featured/western-news-suppression-downing-mh-17-malaysian-jet/

Eric Zuesse
2014/11/05

The cause of the shooting-down of the Malaysian passenger plane MH-17 on July 17th (while that plane was flying over the conflict-zone during Ukraine’s civil war) is becoming clearer and clearer, despite the rigorous continuing attempts by Western ‘news’ media to cover it up and to hide from the public the evidence that clearly shows what brought down this airliner.

In the months since I headlined on August 24th the news, “MH-17 ‘Investigation’: Secret August 8th Agreement Seeps Out: Perpetrator of the Downing in Ukraine, of the Malaysian Airliner, Will Stay Hidden,” explaining why the leaders of Western nations want these black-box and other basic data to remain hidden, additional evidence has nonetheless become public, and all of it confirms and adds yet further details to the explanation that was first put forth by the retired German Lufthansa pilot Peter Haisenko, whose independent investigation had concluded that Ukrainian Government fighter-jets intentionally shot down this civilian plane.

Precisely how they did it is gradually becoming clearer, despite this continuation of Western secrecy regarding the contents of the black boxes, and of the U.S. satellite images, and of the Ukrainian air-traffic-control radar recordings, and of other evidence-sources that are held by the West and not made available to their ‘news’ media nor to anyone outside a tight official circle of those Western nations’ intelligence agencies.

Russia has thus been releasing its own investigations regarding MH-17; and, in the process, Russia is not only providing further details as to how the downing actually happened (it wasn’t by mistake, as the West contends it was), but they are also exposing the absurd impossibility of the Ukrainian Government’s ‘explanation’ of this event, which is the ‘explanation’ that is still being parroted unquestioningly and unflinchingly by officials in Washington, Europe, and NATO, and also by Western ‘news’ media. (As my news-report explained, that secret August 8th agreement was signed by the four governments that were handed the black boxes to study — Ukraine, Belgium, Australia, and Netherlands — and it granted to the Ukrainian Government a veto over anything that the team’s official report would say, which is probably the reason why the subsequent officially released report on those black boxes said essentially nothing. It was a brazen insult to the 298 victims’ families.)

Article continues with hyper-linked sources at link.


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Why Libya?
Posted on November 5, 2014 by Robert Barsocchini

http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2014/11/libya.html

Following the standard US playbook, the Obama regime and its accomplices made up crimes to propagandize their populations into accepting illegal aggression and terrorism against Libya in 2011, and now ignore the actual crimes being committed in the Libya shoved, by the West, into “the abyss”.

Journalist Patrick Cockburn yesterday noted the fabrications “that were used to fuel popular support for the air war in the US, Britain, France and elsewhere”:

Human rights organisations … discovered that there was no evidence for several highly publicised atrocities supposedly carried out by Gaddafi’s forces…

These included the story of the mass rape of women by Gaddafi’s troops that Amnesty International exposed as being without foundation. [Not to mention the US military protects its own rapists and supports other regimes that do use rape as a weapon.]

The uniformed bodies of government soldiers were described by rebel spokesmen as being men shot because they were about to defect to the opposition. Video film showed the soldiers still alive as rebel prisoners so it must have been the rebels who had executed them and put the blame on the government.

Cockburn further notes that, after lying to fabricate the pretext for aggression, the Western governments and media outlets have fallen mysteriously silent on Libya as the country has spiraled into oblivion.  The West thus again all but insists we notice that humanitarian crises play no role in drawing their attention, and that they only trumpet – or invent – human rights violations to cover Western aggression, which is carried out, Cockburn notes, “always in the interests of the country intervening.”

The West immediately lost its feigned concern over the “human rights” violations it exaggerated or simply made up regarding Libya because they were never of concern to begin with, and the West made things much worse: the illegal US-led attack instantly killed or led to the deaths of up to hundreds of thousands.

Since then, Cockburn documents,

[W]arring militias [have] reduce[d] Libya to primal anarchy in which nobody is safe…

Of these “militias”, Washington’s Blog noted in April that they were:

…largely comprised of Al Qaeda terrorists.

And:

The United States … knowingly facilitat[ed] the provision of weapons to known al-Qaeda militias and figures,’ Clare Lopez … former CIA officer, told MailOnline.

Cockburn continues:

The majority of Libyans are demonstrably worse off today than they were under Gaddafi…

Foreign governments and media alike have good reason to forget what they said and did in Libya in 2011, because the aftermath of the overthrow of Gaddafi has been so appalling. The extent of the calamity is made clear by two reports on the present state of the country, one by Amnesty International called “Libya: Rule of the gun – abductions, torture and other militia abuses in western Libya” and a second by Human Rights Watch, focusing on the east of the country, called “Libya: Assassinations May Be Crimes Against Humanity”.

Amnesty says that torture has become commonplace with victims being “beaten with plastic tubes, sticks, metal bars or cables, given electric shocks, suspended in stress positions for hours, kept blindfolded and shackled for days.”

It is well known that the Obama regime simply continued the leaked Bush Jr. agenda to “take out” Libya and six other countries.

But the Bush agenda was also a continuation of longstanding US policy.  The US, immediately after World War II, made internal plans to try to dominate the resources of the Middle East.

Specifically, for a few examples, the US commenced terrorist operations to try to overthrow and install a puppet in Syria in 1948, Iran in 1953 (which it did successfully until 1979), and since the 1930s has been closely partnered with the terrorist organization ruling Saudi Arabia.

The US has been engaged in terrorist operations against Libya since at least 1986, when the US carried out “the major single terrorist act” of the year when it planted and detonated explosives there, attempting to assassinate Gaddafi but succeeding only in killing his daughter and many others.

With the “leading terrorist state“, the US, caging more women than any other country, cracking down on speech, supporting the mass rapist Mubarak of Egypt for thirty years, through 2011, then transitioning to supporting the new mass rapist Sisi in Egypt now, along with scores of other terrorist regimes, one must look beyond official propaganda to determine why the US overthrew Gaddafi.

Taking into account that the US decided long ago to try to dominate the largely Mid East-based and global oil economy (as it earlier had decided to dominate cotton), US actions can be understood by using Syria’s Assad as an analogy.

In trying to control Syria, what would Assad prefer: for any existing opposition to be strong and united against him, or for it to consist of disparate, disorganized, weak factions mostly battling and killing each other, if anyone?

The answer is obvious.  We can then extend the analogy to the US (while remembering that the US formerly used Assad as an ally in the US global torture network).

In trying to dominate the world’s oil market – and the world in general – what would the “leading terrorist state” prefer: unified, strong opposition or weak, small, disparate, warring factions killing and wiping each other out?

Again, the answer is obvious, so we can move on to asking: since “Gaddafi’s overthrow was very much Nato’s doing” (Cockburn), what was Libya before 2011 when it was destroyed by the US-led NATO terrorist network?

Harvard research scholar Garikai Chengu, on October 19, published a report called “Libya: From Africa’s Richest State Under Gaddafi, to Failed State After NATO Intervention”.

Chengu:

In 1967 Colonel Gaddafi inherited one of the poorest nations in Africa; however, by the time he was assassinated, Gaddafi had turned Libya into Africa’s wealthiest nation.

Libya had the highest GDP per capita and life expectancy on the continent. Less people lived below the poverty line than in the Netherlands.

[Libya is now plagued by] widespread rape, assassinations and torture…

America… is now backing… long-time CIA asset, General Khalifa Hifter, who aims to set himself up as Libya’s new dictator.

[Hifter] has taken part in numerous American regime change efforts, including the aborted attempt to overthrow Gaddafi in 1996.

Hifter is currently receiving logistical and air support from the U.S. because his faction envision a mostly secular Libya open to Western financiers, speculators, and capital.

Perhaps, Gaddafi’s greatest crime, in the eyes of NATO, was his desire to put the interests of local labour above foreign capital and his quest for a strong and truly United States of Africa. In fact, in August 2011, President Obama confiscated $30 billion from Libya’s Central Bank, which Gaddafi had earmarked for the establishment of the African IMF and African Central Bank.

In 2011, the West’s objective was clearly not to help the Libyan people, who already had the highest standard of living in Africa, but to oust Gaddafi, install a puppet regime, and gain control of Libya’s natural resources.

For over 40 years, Gaddafi promoted economic democracy and used the nationalized oil wealth to sustain progressive social welfare programs for all Libyans. Under Gaddafi’s rule, Libyans enjoyed not only free health-care and free education, but also free electricity and interest-free loans.

One group that has suffered immensely from NATO’s bombing campaign is the nation’s women. Unlike many other Arab nations, women in Gaddafi’s Libya had the right to education, hold jobs, divorce, hold property and have an income. The United Nations Human Rights Council praised Gaddafi for his promotion of women’s rights.

When the colonel seized power in 1969, few women went to university. Today, more than half of Libya’s university students are women. One of the first laws Gaddafi passed in 1970 was an equal pay for equal work law.

[Libya is now] clamping down on women’s rights.

Given that Libya sits atop the strategic intersection of the African, Middle Eastern and European worlds, Western control of the nation, has always been a remarkably effective way to project power into these three regions and beyond.

Libya, it appears, was, indeed, an outstandingly strong source of opposition to Western domination of the region, as well as a “threat of a good example” for successfully carrying out policies hated by the USA, such as free healthcare, electricity, and education.

In one particularly egregious move, Gaddafi had even allied with Nelson Mandela in the fight against Apartheid, while the US, particularly Ronald Reagan, strongly supported and fought hard to maintain Apartheid, including by imprisoning Mandela and putting him on the US “terrorist” list (while taking Saddam Hussein off) until Bush Jr. finally changed Mandela’s classification in 2008.  Reagan and US efforts to topple Gaddafi were thus integral to the US white supremacist jihad to maintain Apartheid.

Indeed, to ask “Why Libya?” is to ask “Why anywhere?”

Chengu notes of “Western intervention in … Libya, Iraq, and Syria”:

…prior to western military involvement in these three nations, they were the most modern and secular states in the Middle East and North Africa with the highest regional women’s rights and standards of living.

As confirmation, the 2014 UN Development Report also found, as Patrick Martin notes:

The steepest decline in living conditions during 2013 occurred in Central African Republic, Libya and Syria—three countries targeted by US and French imperialism for military intervention and political subversion.



When we mute Western government and integrated corporate propaganda (what they say) and look at what they actually do, what is left?  The bare reality of a brutal Western terror axis butchering, as it always has, any group of people that could potentially deter Western domination and thus cut into the percentage of global wealth captured by Western predators.

Depressing, but Carl Herman nicely expresses how we can deal with this.

Robert Barsocchini is a researcher focusing on global force dynamics.  He also writes professionally for the film industry.  Here is his blog.  Also see his free e-book, Whatever it Takes – Hillary Clinton’s Record of Support for War and other Depravities.  Click here to follow Robert and his UK-based colleague, Dean Robinson, on Twitter.


---------------------------
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Everyman Standing Order 02: Everyman is Responsible for Energy and Security.
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The Curious Silence of the West
Libya Falls Into the Abyss

by PATRICK COCKBURN
November 03, 2014

http://www.counterpunch.org/2014/11/03/libya-falls-into-the-abyss/

Remember the time when Libya was being held up by the American, British, French and Qatari governments as a striking example of benign and successful foreign intervention? It is worth looking again at film of David Cameron grandstanding as liberator in Benghazi in September 2011 as he applauds the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi and tells the crowd that “your city was an example to the world as you threw off a dictator and chose freedom”.

Mr Cameron has not been back to Benghazi, nor is he likely to do so as warring militias reduce Libya to primal anarchy in which nobody is safe. The majority of Libyans are demonstrably worse off today than they were under Gaddafi, notwithstanding his personality cult and authoritarian rule. The slaughter is getting worse by the month and is engulfing the entire country.

“Your friends in Britain and France will stand with you as you build your democracy,” pledged Mr Cameron to the people of Benghazi. Three years later, they are words he evidently wants to forget, since there was almost no reference to Libya, the one military intervention he had previously ordered, when he spoke in the House of Commons justifying British airstrikes against Islamic State (Isis) in Iraq.

The foreign media has largely ceased to cover Libya because it rightly believes it is too dangerous for journalists to go there. Yet I remember a moment in the early summer of 2011 in the frontline south of Benghazi when there were more reporters and camera crews present than there were rebel militiamen. Cameramen used to ask fellow foreign journalists to move aside when they were filming so that this did not become too apparent. In reality, Gaddafi’s overthrow was very much Nato’s doing, with Libyan militiamen mopping up.

Human rights organisations have had a much better record in Libya than the media since the start of the uprising in 2011. They discovered that there was no evidence for several highly publicised atrocities supposedly carried out by Gaddafi’s forces that were used to fuel popular support for the air war in the US, Britain, France and elsewhere. These included the story of the mass rape of women by Gaddafi’s troops that Amnesty International exposed as being without foundation. The uniformed bodies of government soldiers were described by rebel spokesmen as being men shot because they were about to defect to the opposition. Video film showed the soldiers still alive as rebel prisoners so it must have been the rebels who had executed them and put the blame on the government.

Foreign governments and media alike have good reason to forget what they said and did in Libya in 2011, because the aftermath of the overthrow of Gaddafi has been so appalling. The extent of the calamity is made clear by two reports on the present state of the country, one by Amnesty International called “Libya: Rule of the gun – abductions, torture and other militia abuses in western Libya” and a second by Human Rights Watch, focusing on the east of the country, called “Libya: Assassinations May Be Crimes Against Humanity”.

The latter is a gruesome but fascinating account of what people in Benghazi call “Black Friday,” which occurred on 19 September this year, the most deadly day in a three-day assassination spree in the city, in which “the dead included two young activists, members of the security services, an outspoken cleric and five other civilians”. The activists were Tawfiq Bensaud and Sami Elkawafi, two men aged 18 and 19, who had campaigned and demonstrated against militia violence. Among others who died was a prominent cleric, Seikh Nabil Sati, who was murdered, as well as a young man, Abdulrahman al-Mogherbi, who was kidnapped at the cleric’s funeral and later found dead.

Their murders brought to 250 the number of victims of politically motivated killings this year in Benghazi and Derna, the major cities in eastern Libya. This is not counting the far larger number who have died in military operations between the different militias or the battles that have raged in and around Tripoli.

Without the rest of the world paying much attention, a civil war has been raging in western Libya since 13 July between the Libya Dawn coalition of militias, originally based in Misrata, and another militia group centred on Zintan. A largely separate civil war between the forces of retired General Khalifa Haftar and the Shura Council of Benghazi Revolutionaries is being fought out in the city. Government has collapsed. Amnesty says that torture has become commonplace with victims being “beaten with plastic tubes, sticks, metal bars or cables, given electric shocks, suspended in stress positions for hours, kept blindfolded and shackled for days.”

It is easy enough to deride the neo-imperial posturing of David Cameron and Nicolas Sarkozy, or to describe the abyss into which Libya has fallen since 2011. The people whom that intervention propelled into power have reduced a country that had been peaceful for more than half a century to a level of violence that is beginning to approach that of Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. Whatever Western intentions, the result has been a disaster. In Libya, as in Syria today, Western intervention was supposedly in support of democracy, but was conducted in alliance with the Sunni absolute monarchies of the Gulf who had no such aims.

The temptation is to say that foreign intervention invariably brings catastrophe to the country intervened in. But this is not quite true: US air strikes in defence of the Syrian Kurds at Kobani and the Iraqi Kurds in their capital Erbil are justifiable and prevent massacres by Isis. But the drawback is that foreign intervention is always in the interests of the country intervening. These may, for a time, coincide with the real interests of the country where the foreign intervention is taking place, but this seldom lasts very long.

This is the lesson of recent foreign interventions in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria. Most Afghans wanted the Taliban out in 2001 but they did not want the warlords back, something the Americans found acceptable. The US would fight the Taliban, but not confront the movement’s sponsors in Pakistan, thereby dooming Afghanistan to endless war. In Iraq in 2003, many Iraqis welcomed the US-led invasion because they wanted the end of Saddam Hussein’s rule, but they did not want a foreign occupation. The Americans did not want the fall of Saddam to benefit Iran, so they needed to occupy the country and install their own nominees in power.

In all three cases cited above, the West intervened in somebody else’s civil war and tried to dictate who won. There was a pretence that the Taliban, Saddam, Gaddafi or Assad were demonically evil and without any true supporters. This foreign support may give victory to one party in a civil war, as in Libya, which they could not win by relying on their own strength. In Iraq, the beleaguered Sunni could not fight a US-backed Shia government so it needed to bring in al-Qaeda. Thus the conditions were created that eventually produced Isis.

Patrick Cockburn is the author of The Jihadis Return: ISIS and the New Sunni Uprising.


---------------------------
Everyman Standing Order 01: In the Face of Tyranny; Everybody Stands, Nobody Runs.
Everyman Standing Order 02: Everyman is Responsible for Energy and Security.
Everyman Standing Order 03: Everyman knows Timing is Critical in any Movement.
   

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Description of News Articles Index

http://www.wanttoknow.info/indexnewsarticles

The WantToKnow.info database contains over 5,000 one-paragraph summaries of highly revealing news articles from major media sources. For the very best of all these articles, click here. The key sentence or two in each news article is highlighted to facilitate skimming. Links are always provided to the original news articles on their major media websites. If any link fails to function, you can learn how to find the article by clicking here or by clicking on the link provided at the top of every news page.

This index contains links to the various categories of news articles provided with several choices for viewing options based on either importance, date the article was posted to the website, or date of the article itself. A few major categories have an additional option of viewing only the titles and links of major articles with three stars by the very best articles. Topics in the index table which have a (*) after the title are described below the table. Click on one or more categories in which you are interested, and you will be amazed at some of the highly revealing news articles which have been published on that subject.

For newcomers, we recommend starting with the column "Listed By Importance," which presents the most important articles on each topic first. Should you be interested keeping up with all of the new articles posted on any topic, use the "Date Posted" list, as newly posted articles end up scattered throughout the other lists. You can also use the RSS links available on all lists to receive the most recent updates. Thanks for your interest. Help us to transform our world by spreading the word.



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Everyman Standing Order 01: In the Face of Tyranny; Everybody Stands, Nobody Runs.
Everyman Standing Order 02: Everyman is Responsible for Energy and Security.
Everyman Standing Order 03: Everyman knows Timing is Critical in any Movement.
   

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Evidence Is Now Conclusive: Two Ukrainian Government Fighter-Jets Shot Down Malaysian Airlines MH17. It was Not a ‘Buk’ Surface to Air Missile

http://www.globalresearch.ca/evidence-is-now-conclusive-two-ukrainian-government-fighter-jets-shot-down-malaysian-airlines-mh17-it-was-not-a-buk-surface-to-air-missile/5394814

This important article was first published in August 2014.  Its assessment is broadly correct.

We’ll go considerably farther than has yet been revealed by the professional intelligence community, to provide the actual evidence that conclusively shows that (and how) the Ukrainian Government shot down the Malaysian airliner, MH-17, on July 17th.

The latest report from the intelligence community was headlined on August 3rd by Robert Parry, “Flight 17 Shoot-Down Scenario Shifts,” and he revealed there that,

    “Contrary to the Obama administration’s public claims blaming eastern Ukrainian rebels and Russia for the shoot-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, some U.S. intelligence analysts have concluded that the rebels and Russia were likely not at fault and that it appears Ukrainian government forces were to blame, according to a source briefed on these findings. This judgment — at odds with what President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have expressed publicly — is based largely on the absence of U.S. government evidence that Russia supplied the rebels with a Buk anti-aircraft missile system that would be needed to hit a civilian jetliner flying at 33,000 feet, said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity.”

It’s actually based on lots more than that; it’s based not on an absence of evidence, but on positive proof that the Ukrainian Government shot the plane down, and even proving how it was done. You will see this proof, right here, laid out in detail, for the first time.

The reader-comments to my July 31st article, “First Examination of Malaysian MH-17 Cockpit Photo Shows Ukraine Government Shot that Plane Down,” provided links and leads to independent additional confirmatory evidence backing up that account, of retired Lufthansa pilot Peter Haisenko’s reconstruction of this event, to such an extent that, after exploring the matter further, I now feel confident enough to say that the evidence on this matter is, indeed, “conclusive,” that Haisenko is right.

Here is all of that evidence, which collectively convinces me that Haisenko’s conclusion there, is, indeed, the only one that can even possibly explain this wreckage:

    “There have been two or three pieces of fuselage that have been really pockmarked with what almost looks like machine-gun fire, very very strong machine-gun fire.”

This remarkable statement comes not from Haisenko, but from one of the first OSCE investigators who arrived at the scene of the disaster.


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Engineered Economic Crisis: Simultaneous Inflation and Deflation

http://www.globalresearch.ca/engineered-economic-crisis-simultaneous-inflation-and-deflation/5412686

By Prof. Ismael Hossein-Zadeh
Global Research, November 08, 2014

While the financial sector of the core capitalist economies is enjoying escalating asset price inflation, the real sector of these economies, especially those of Europe and Japan, is suffering from deflation, that is, stagnation and high unemployment.

And while the simultaneous occurrence of inflation and deflation sounds paradoxical, it is only superficially so. In reality it is simply the logical outcome of neoliberal monetary policies pursued in these countries: as these policies of austerity economics have since the 2008 financial collapse systematically drained the overwhelming majority of citizens of material resources and funneled those resources to the financial sector, the result has been the understandable contraction of the real sector concurrent with the expansion of the financial sector.

In the face of these apparently contradictory developments, economic pundits and financial “experts” at the helm of monetary policy-making apparatus feign bewilderment at how market developments have become increasingly more “complicated,” and how economic fine-tuning has accordingly become more challenging. Such pompous utterances are, however, hollow pretensions designed to obfuscate issues, to mystify economics and to confuse the people. In reality, there is absolutely nothing “complicated” or mysterious about the simultaneous expansion of the financial sector and contraction of the real sector. It is, indeed, altogether axiomatic that if you systematically rob Peter to pay Paul, you are going to impoverish Peter (the 99%) while enriching Paul (the 1%).

The concurrent enrichment of the financial plutocracy and impoverishment of the masses of the people is akin to the growth of a parasite in the body of a living organism at the expense of life-sustaining blood or nourishment of that organism. What is unbeknown to the public is that the parasitic transfer of economic blood from the bottom up is not simply the spontaneous outcome of the operations of the invisible hand of market mechanism, or the blind forces of competition. More importantly, the transfer is the logical outcome of deliberate monetary policies that are crafted by the financial elites and their proxies at the helm of economic policy making of most capitalist countries. As political economist Mike Whitney recently put it:

    “As most people now realize, stocks haven’t tripled in the last 5 years because the economy is expanding. Heck, no. The economy is still on all-fours and everyone knows it. The reason stocks have been flying-high is because the Fed added a hefty $4 trillion in red ink to its balance sheet. Naturally, when someone buys $4 trillion in financial assets, the price of financial assets go up” (source).

The purported rationale behind the unremitting bestowing of the nearly interest-free money upon the financial institutions is that as these institutions receive cheap money from the printing presses of the government they would, in turn, extend low-cost credit to manufacturers, thereby prompting investment and job creation in the real sector of the economy.

This traditional/New Deal monetary policy worked fairly well as long as regulatory constraints—especially the Glass-Steagall Act that was in force from 1933 to 1998—strictly stipulated the types and quantities of investments that banks and other financial intermediaries could undertake. As those regulatory requirements prohibited banks from engaging in speculative or risky investments, they had very little choice but to behave or do business mainly as banks, or financial intermediaries, that is, funneling depositors’ savings and/or government-generated money to the real sector of the economy.

With the systematic removal of regulatory constraints, however, banks have been increasingly abandoning or marginalizing their traditional role as financial intermediaries. Instead, they now invest mostly in buying and selling of assets and other speculative activities, as such financial/speculative investments are much more lucrative than simply accepting deposits at certain rates of interest and then lending them at slightly higher rates.

Not only has this change in the behavior or function of the banking system drastically curtailed the flow of capital from the financial to the real sector, it has in fact reversed the flow of capital between these two sectors: there is now an alarming capital flight from the real to the financial sector in pursuit of higher, speculative rates of profit. Evidence shows that (in recent years) real sector corporate managers/CEOs are increasingly diverting their profits, as well the cheap money they borrow from governments (usually through the privately-owned central banks), to speculation instead of production. As I noted in an earlier article on this subject, “they seem to have come to think: why bother with the messy business of production when higher returns can be garnered by simply buying and selling titles.”

This steady transfer of money from the real to the financial sector is the exact opposite of what monetary policy-makers—and indeed the entire neoclassical/mainstream economic theory—claim or portray to happen: flow of money from the financial to the real sector.

One would imagine that these drastic changes in real world markets, which show how gravely mainstream economists have gone awry in holding tight to their abstract and largely obsolete theories, would have somewhat shaken the faith of these economists in their economic orthodoxy and prompted them to revise or adjust their traditional theories of money supply, of credit creation, of finance, and of investment.

Alas, the faith in market mechanism and economic orthodoxy seems to be as strong as the faith in any otherworldly religion. Whether as university professors or as advisors to policy makers, mainstream economists continue to teach the same materials and retell the same theories in the face of heavily financialized economies as they did in times long past, that is, in the era of relatively competitive markets and industrial/manufacturing economic structures of yore.

Under the sway of finance capital, monetary policy has increasingly turned into an instrument of asset price inflation, that is, of accumulation of ever more fictitious capital in the deep pockets of the financial oligarchy. While not openly acknowledged, the rationale behind the endless injection of cheap money into the financial sector—in the manner of pumping hot air into a balloon—is a desperate attempt or a vain hope on the part of economic policy makers that the so-called trickle-down effects of asset price bubbles may lead to economic recovery.

Admittedly, the presumed trickle-down effects on aggregate demand may have had some validity in the earlier (industrial or manufacturing) stages of capitalism where the rise in the wealth of nations also meant expanded (real) production and increased employment. However, in the era of heavily financialized economies, where the dominant form of capitalist wealth comes not so much from real production of goods and services as it does from asset price bubbles, trickle-down theory has lost whatever minimal validity it may have had at earlier phases of capitalism.

Sadly, monetary policy makers, who are often proxies of financial elites at the helm of privately-owned central banks (contrary to the widespread perceptions, the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank is also privately owned, its share-holders are commercial banks) are not deterred by real world economic developments that tend to contradict their religious-like theories. Their loyalty is first and foremost to the interests and agendas of their behind-the-scene bosses and benefactors―those who nurture, promote and place them at the seat of monetary/economic decision-making. Having abandoned the traditional/New Deal fiscal and monetary policies of demand management, asset-price inflation has now become the policy of choice of economic recovery—if not recovery, then of preventing an economic collapse.

Hostage to the Banksters

This helps explain why the economies of most of the core capitalist countries have become hostage to banksters, to their insatiable appetite for ever more cheap money. This practice of continued injections of cash into the financial sector is obviously tantamount to ransom payments to the “too big to fail” banksters, out of an exaggerated fear that their failure would lead to “cataclysmic economic collapse.” It also helps explain the multiple renewals or endless extensions of the policy of quantitative easing (QE), as termination of this policy is bound to lead to another financial implosion.

As an indication of this destructive addiction of the financial markets to Uncle Sam’s generous cash injections, let us remember how these markets went into a tail spin in mid-October by the prospect that QE may not be extended beyond October; and how they immediately rebounded on the news that the Fed would indeed continue cash injections beyond October―that is, QE3 would be continued as QE4. This is how Mike Whitney described those turbulent days of the financial markets:

    “By mid-day [of October 15, 2014], the Dow was down 460 points before clawing its way back to minus 173 points. It looked like the market was set for another triple-digit flogging on Thursday [October 16] when the Fed stepped in and started talking-up an extension to QE3. That’s all it took to ease investors jitters, stop the meltdown and send equities rocketing back into space. By the end of Friday’s session, all the markets were back in the green with the Dow logging an impressive 263 points on the day” (source).

While the policy of indefinite extension of QE (along with near-zero interest rates) may temporarily keep the financial markets from imploding, the policy simply delays the day of reckoning—more or less like keeping a terminally-ill patient alive on artificial life support. And therein lies the futile, indeed tragic, aspect of this policy: monetary policy-makers’ obligation to constantly inject cash into the financial system in order to keep the system from collapsing is akin to the logic of the proverbial bicyclist who has to keep riding forward or else he would fall over.

Monetary policy-makers at the head of central banks and treasury departments, representing the powerful interests of big finance, would do everything they can to avoid going off the cliff, or delaying the approach to the cliff. In so doing, however, they drain the overwhelming majority of citizens of economic/financial resources—by transferring those resources (through austerity measures) to the financial oligarchy. Andre Damon (of the World Socialist Web Site) succinctly captures the redistributive effects of this neoliberal monetary policy:

    “The richest one percent of the world’s population now controls 48.2 percent of global wealth, up from 46 percent last year, according to the most recent global wealth report issued by Credit Suisse, the Swiss-based financial services company.

    “Hypothetically, if the growth of inequality were to proceed at last year’s rate, the richest one percent for all intents and purposes would control all the wealth on the planet within 23 years.

    “The report found that the growth of global inequality has accelerated sharply since the 2008 financial crisis, as the values of financial assets have soared while wages have stagnated and declined. . . . Emma Seery, head of Inequality at Oxfam, the British anti-poverty charity, commented, ‘This report shows that those least able to afford it have paid the price of the financial crisis whilst more wealth has flooded into the coffers of the very richest.’

    “The study revealed that the richest 8.6 percent of the world’s population—those with a net worth of more than $100,000—control 85 percent of the world’s wealth. Meanwhile, the bottom 70 percent of the world’s population—those with less than $10,000 in net worth—hold a mere 2.9 percent of global wealth.

    “The growth in inequality is bound up with a worldwide surge in paper wealth, fueled by the trillions of dollars pumped into the financial system by central banks via zero interest rate and ‘quantitative easing’ policies. . . .

    “As the report noted, ‘The overall global economy may remain sluggish, but this has not prevented personal wealth from surging ahead during the past year. Driven by … robust equity prices, total wealth grew by 8.3% worldwide … the first time household wealth has passed the $250 trillion threshold’.” (Source).

What is To be Done?

The solution to the runaway financial sector, according to most liberal–Keynesian critics of financialization, is regulation, or re-regulation. While this would be a welcome improvement over the destabilizing behavior of the unbridled finance capital, it would represent only a tentative short- to medium-term solution, not a definitive long-term one. For, as long as there is no democratic control, regulations would be undermined by the influential financial interests that elect and control both policy-makers and, therefore, policy. The dramatic reversal of the extensive regulations of the 1930s and 1940s, which were put in place in response to the Great Depression, to today’s equally dramatic deregulations serves as a robust validation of this judgment.

Other critics of the out-of-control finance capital call for public banking. These critics argue that, due to their economic and political influence, powerful financial interests easily subvert government regulations, thereby periodically reproducing financial instability and economic turbulence. By contrast, they further argue, public-sector banks can better reassure depositors of the security of their savings, as well as help direct those savings toward productive credit allocation and investment opportunities. Ending the recurring crises of financial markets thus requires placing the destabilizing financial intermediaries under public ownership and democratic control.

While nationalization of commercial banks could mitigate or do away with market turbulences that are due to financial bubbles and bursts, it will not preclude other systemic crises of capitalism. These include profitability crises that result from very high levels of capitalization (or high levels of the “organic composition of capital” a la Marx), from insufficient demand and/or under-consumption, from overcapacity and/or overproduction, or from disproportionality between various sectors of a market economy.

Furthermore, as long as capitalism and, along with it, the lopsided distribution of economic surplus prevails, financial instability cannot be uprooted by bank nationalization. For, while nationalization of traditional/commercial banks may temper financial fragility, other types of financial intermediaries and institutions are bound to arise in order to circumvent regulation and/or nationalization, thereby precipitating financial instability. These include all kinds of shadow banks and speculative enterprises such as private equity firms, derivative markets, hedge funds, and more.

To do away with the systemic crises of capitalism, therefore, requires more than nationalizing and/or regulating the banks; it requires changing the capitalist system itself.

Ismael Hossein-zadeh is Professor Emeritus of Economics (Drake University). He is the author of Beyond Mainstream Explanations of the Financial Crisis (Routledge 2014), The Political Economy of U.S. Militarism (Palgrave–Macmillan 2007), and the Soviet Non-capitalist Development: The Case of Nasser’s Egypt (Praeger Publishers 1989). He is also a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press 2012).


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Financial Collapse Will Cause Civil Unrest to Erupt in America by 2016. Economist

Rampant corruption combined with economic woes to spark "revolution"

By Paul Joseph Watson
Global Research, November 08, 2014
Infowars 7 November 2014

Economist Martin Armstrong is predicting that rising resentment against the status quo as a result of economic inequality is likely to cause a serious political uprising before 2016.

“It looks more and more like a serious political uprising will erupt by 2016 once the economy turns down. That is the magic ingredient. Turn the economy down and you get civil unrest and revolution,” writes Armstrong.

In making the forecast, the economist cites the case of 90-year-old World War 2 veteran Arnold Abbott, who is being targeted by authorities in Fort Lauderdale for defying a newly passed city ordinance that criminalizes feeding the homeless, an example says Armstrong of how “laws in the USA have simply gone nuts.”

Armstrong, who correctly predicted the 1987 Black Monday crash as well as the 1998 Russian financial collapse, asserts that the downfall of the system will be its inability to gauge the anger that Americans currently feel towards their government.

“You just cannot make up this stuff. And the Democrats cannot figure out that the people are getting pissed-off at who is ever in office? And what about the police?” asks Armstrong. “Is this just turning into thugs with badges who just enforce whatever law some nut-job politician writes? What if they passed a Herod type law to curb population and decree that everyone must kill their first-born. When does reason ever return to the police force these days? They no longer protect the people – they protect the politicians against the people.”

As we reported back in August, the U.S. Army is preparing for civil unrest in the United States. A 132-page document entitled U.S. Army Techniques Publication 3-39.33: Civil Disturbances outlines how troops may be required to deal with “unruly and violent crowds” where it is “necessary to quell riots and restore public order.”

Riots which rocked Ferguson, Missouri earlier this year and threaten to reignite should Officer Darren Wilson be acquitted illustrate how single events can spark sustained social unrest.

However, more widespread dislocation is only likely to occur in the aftermath of an economic collapse which impacts a huge number of Americans. As we have seen in numerous countries across Europe, including in Belgium just today, crippling austerity measures combined with anemic economic growth have set the stage for violent unrest.

In a February 2013 article entitled Why the Banking Elite Want Riots in America, we outlined why the political class is perfectly content to engineer and exploit social unrest as a means of paving the way for the IMF to engage in its tried and tested method of asset stripping and looting a nation.

With polls showing some 74% of Americans are already angry or dissatisfied with the government, further economic hardship could prove to be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

Paul Joseph Watson is the editor at large of Infowars.com and Prison Planet.com.


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Sleeping 7-year-old girl shot in head during no-knock police raid on wrong home

"They blew my granddaughter's brains out. They killed her right before my eyes. I watched the light go out of her eyes."

Posted on October 14, 2014 by Site Staff in News

http://www.policestateusa.com/2014/aiyana-stanley-jones-raid/

DETROIT, MI — A Special Response Team shattered a family’s window in the middle of the night, hurled a flashbang onto a couch next to a sleeping girl, then charged in and shot her in the head.  The hyper-aggressive tactics were made worse by the fact that police had taken it upon themselves to raid both sides of a duplex, when their suspect was only known to reside in one of them.


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The Danger of the 2014 Electoral Blowout

Thursday, November 6, 2014

http://iiipercent.blogspot.co.uk/2014/11/the-danger-of-2014-electoral-blowout.html

The result of the brutal dismissal of D's on Tuesday will lead to a dangerous outcome: the vast majority of Americans will believe that something has happened that will change the reality in America.  They will ramp-down.  Their sense of urgency will fade as they "...let the system work, and let the new R's put the country back on track".

Worse - anyone to the Right of the R's just voted into office will be categorically deemed to be "outside the mainstream" - extremists, if you will.

Some of us know that nothing tangible will change as a result of the elections Tuesday.

But the sense of crisis will fade from many minds.

Be certain to insulate yourself from that dangerously false outlook, and the accompanying reinforcement of Normalcy Bias that is a certainty.

This country has never changed in any real fashion by the will or consent of the masses.  Chasing those Hearts & Minds is a fool's errand.

None of those elected intend to repeal 2A infringements back to and including NFA.  None of those will have the stomach to roll back ObamaCare - they'll tweak it, not kill it.  None of those elected will stop our nation from bleeding out through entitlement programs.  None campaigned on killing Patriot Act or NDAA.  None of those elected have any intention of striving for Rightful Liberty.

But how many people have you heard in the last two days make some comment about "Now we'll get back on track!"

Amnesty?  It's going to happen, one way or another, under whatever name focus groups find best, and the D' and R's will seek to win their share of the new voter pie.  There will be no real closing of the borders.

Nothing changed except the window dressing.

Nothing any elected official will do will bring an end to stories like this one, sent in by CavMedic:

Mother Calls Police to Help Her Son Take His Medicine, Cop Shows Up and Shoots Him

http://theantimedia.org/mother-calls-police-to-help-her-son-take-his-medicine/

Cassius Methyl
October 29, 2014

(TheAntiMedia) In Gretna, Florida, Juanita Donald called the police to come assist her and get her 24 year old son to take his medication, as she had done in the past.

On Tuesday morning, around 9:30 am, she called the police to help her with her son Kaldrick Donald and one officer showed up, Sergeant Charles Brown.

Charles Brown ended up tasing Kaldrick Donald repeatedly, and then took him into the isolated bathroom in the family’s house and shot him multiple times, killing him.

Brown murdered Donald in the presence his pregnant sister and mother, and no one can even say why. He was completely unarmed, and somehow not completely sane.

His mother said “I heard my baby say, I want my mama after he shot him, and then I didn’t hear anything else.”

His mother said she was “expecting them to take him to the Apalachee Center like before”, but instead a single officer came and escalated the situation, murdering him in front of his family.


The countdown to impact continues to tick.  Tock.  Tick.  Tock.

Change will only happen when a small group of principled Americans make it so.

Stay the course.

Kerodin
III

November 6, 2014 at 3:21 PM

http://abcnews.go.com/US/trojan-horse-bug-lurking-vital-us-computers-2011/story?id=26737476

Kill some of the power grid, blame it on the crazy Russians, start a war....
We're not falling for it.
ChuckM


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May I take a shot at 03?


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May I take a shot at 03?


Everyman Standing Order 03:  Build the Future You Want.  Never Accept the Scraps Thrown to You.

Not bad Matt, but not what the universe had in mind from my perspective. However the timing of 03 was prompted by you, the universe has it's own plan and let's us know in subtle ways if we pay attention..

Everyman Standing Order 03: Everyman knows Timing is Critical in any Movement.


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Khorasan: Pentagon Says Fantasy Terror Group Bombed to Protect Homeland

Pentagon peddles debunked Khorasan myth

By Kurt Nimmo
Global Research, November 08, 2014
Infowars 7 November 2014

http://www.globalresearch.ca/khorasan-pentagon-says-fantasy-terror-group-bombed-to-protect-homeland/5412709

Now that Republicans have taken over Congress, and John McCain is about to hold court in the Senate’s Armed Services Committee, it’s time for the government to ramp up the war propaganda.

On Thursday Reuters reported a terror attack allegedly planned by the fictitious terror group Khorasan was thwarted by the Pentagon.

“We took decisive action to protect our interests and remove their capability to act,” U.S. Central Command said in a statement on Thursday.

The Khorasan bad guys, according to the government narrative, pose “a more direct and imminent threat to the United States” than the Islamic State and were dispatched to Syria by al-Qaeda boss Ayman al-Zawahiri to fight against arch nemesis – of the U.S., the Gulf Emirates and Israel – Bashar al-Assad.

Instead, supposed Khorasan militants “will provide these sophisticated explosives to their Western recruits who could sneak them onto U.S.-bound flights.”

Previous attempts attributed to al-Qaeda’s supposed master bomber, Ibrahim al-Asiri, resulted in the fizzle bomb unleashed by Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, aka the Nigerian underwear bomber, and the cargo plane bombs allegedly discovered at the last minute by Saudi Arabia’s security boss on October 29, 2010.

For more on the overheated domestic terror threat posed by Khorasan, see our Khorasan: Toothpaste Bombers from Nowhere.

Khorasan, however, like its exaggerated explosives – including undetectable bombs inserted in the rectums of suicide bombers – does not exist.

“You haven’t heard of the Khorasan Group because there isn’t one,” writes  Andrew C. McCarthy. “It is a name the administration came up with, calculating that Khorasan — the Iranian–Afghan border region — had sufficient connection to jihadist lore that no one would call the president on it.”

No one, that is, embedded in the corporate media. Almost from the start the alternative media has called foul on the Khorasan legend.

Many in the establishment media now sheepishly admit Khorasan is a ruse. Dogged Obama partisans, however, in particular Media Matters, follow the government script a bit more closely than their less partisan colleagues.

After denouncing reality – characterized as a conservative conspiracy – Alexandrea Boguhn writes for the New Democrat organization that “the intelligence community has been monitoring the Khorasan group for some time, and Obama himself has publicly acknowledged its ties to al Qaeda.”

It really is astounding how eager so-called New Democrats are to support the neocon war agenda and push propaganda fabrications they denounced when Bush was in office.


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Why the Ukraine Crisis Is the West’s Fault

The Liberal Delusions That Provoked Putin

By John J. Mearsheimer
From our September/October 2014 Issue

http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/141769/john-j-mearsheimer/why-the-ukraine-crisis-is-the-wests-fault

According to the prevailing wisdom in the West, the Ukraine crisis can be blamed almost entirely on Russian aggression. Russian President Vladimir Putin, the argument goes, annexed Crimea out of a long-standing desire to resuscitate the Soviet empire, and he may eventually go after the rest of Ukraine, as well as other countries in eastern Europe. In this view, the ouster of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych in February 2014 merely provided a pretext for Putin’s decision to order Russian forces to seize part of Ukraine.

But this account is wrong: the United States and its European allies share most of the responsibility for the crisis. The taproot of the trouble is NATO enlargement, the central element of a larger strategy to move Ukraine out of Russia’s orbit and integrate it into the West. At the same time, the EU’s expansion eastward and the West’s backing of the pro-democracy movement in Ukraine -- beginning with the Orange Revolution in 2004 -- were critical elements, too. Since the mid-1990s, Russian leaders have adamantly opposed NATO enlargement, and in recent years, they have made it clear that they would not stand by while their strategically important neighbor turned into a Western bastion. For Putin, the illegal overthrow of Ukraine’s democratically elected and pro-Russian president -- which he rightly labeled a “coup” -- was the final straw. He responded by taking Crimea, a peninsula he feared would host a NATO naval base, and working to destabilize Ukraine until it abandoned its efforts to join the West.

Putin’s pushback should have come as no surprise. After all, the West had been moving into Russia’s backyard and threatening its core strategic interests, a point Putin made emphatically and repeatedly. Elites in the United States and Europe have been blindsided by events only because they subscribe to a flawed view of international politics. They tend to believe that the logic of realism holds little relevance in the twenty-first century and that Europe can be kept whole and free on the basis of such liberal principles as the rule of law, economic interdependence, and democracy.

But this grand scheme went awry in Ukraine. The crisis there shows that realpolitik remains relevant -- and states that ignore it do so at their own peril. U.S. and European leaders blundered in attempting to turn Ukraine into a Western stronghold on Russia’s border. Now that the consequences have been laid bare, it would be an even greater mistake to continue this misbegotten policy.

    U.S. and European leaders blundered in attempting to turn Ukraine into a Western stronghold on Russia’s border.

THE WESTERN AFFRONT

As the Cold War came to a close, Soviet leaders preferred that U.S. forces remain in Europe and NATO stay intact, an arrangement they thought would keep a reunified Germany pacified. But they and their Russian successors did not want NATO to grow any larger and assumed that Western diplomats understood their concerns. The Clinton administration evidently thought otherwise, and in the mid-1990s, it began pushing for NATO to expand.

The first round of enlargement took place in 1999 and brought in the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland. The second occurred in 2004; it included Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia. Moscow complained bitterly from the start. During NATO’s 1995 bombing campaign against the Bosnian Serbs, for example, Russian President Boris Yeltsin said, “This is the first sign of what could happen when NATO comes right up to the Russian Federation’s borders. ... The flame of war could burst out across the whole of Europe.” But the Russians were too weak at the time to derail NATO’s eastward movement -- which, at any rate, did not look so threatening, since none of the new members shared a border with Russia, save for the tiny Baltic countries.

Then NATO began looking further east. At its April 2008 summit in Bucharest, the alliance considered admitting Georgia and Ukraine. The George W. Bush administration supported doing so, but France and Germany opposed the move for fear that it would unduly antagonize Russia. In the end, NATO’s members reached a compromise: the alliance did not begin the formal process leading to membership, but it issued a statement endorsing the aspirations of Georgia and Ukraine and boldly declaring, “These countries will become members of NATO.”

Moscow, however, did not see the outcome as much of a compromise. Alexander Grushko, then Russia’s deputy foreign minister, said, “Georgia’s and Ukraine’s membership in the alliance is a huge strategic mistake which would have most serious consequences for pan-European security.” Putin maintained that admitting those two countries to NATO would represent a “direct threat” to Russia. One Russian newspaper reported that Putin, while speaking with Bush, “very transparently hinted that if Ukraine was accepted into NATO, it would cease to exist.”

Russia’s invasion of Georgia in August 2008 should have dispelled any remaining doubts about Putin’s determination to prevent Georgia and Ukraine from joining NATO. Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, who was deeply committed to bringing his country into NATO, had decided in the summer of 2008 to reincorporate two separatist regions, Abkhazia and South Ossetia. But Putin sought to keep Georgia weak and divided -- and out of NATO. After fighting broke out between the Georgian government and South Ossetian separatists, Russian forces took control of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Moscow had made its point. Yet despite this clear warning, NATO never publicly abandoned its goal of bringing Georgia and Ukraine into the alliance. And NATO expansion continued marching forward, with Albania and Croatia becoming members in 2009.

The EU, too, has been marching eastward. In May 2008, it unveiled its Eastern Partnership initiative, a program to foster prosperity in such countries as Ukraine and integrate them into the EU economy. Not surprisingly, Russian leaders view the plan as hostile to their country’s interests. This past February, before Yanukovych was forced from office, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov accused the EU of trying to create a “sphere of influence” in eastern Europe. In the eyes of Russian leaders, EU expansion is a stalking horse for NATO expansion.

The West’s final tool for peeling Kiev away from Moscow has been its efforts to spread Western values and promote democracy in Ukraine and other post-Soviet states, a plan that often entails funding pro-Western individuals and organizations. Victoria Nuland, the U.S. assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, estimated in December 2013 that the United States had invested more than $5 billion since 1991 to help Ukraine achieve “the future it deserves.” As part of that effort, the U.S. government has bankrolled the National Endowment for Democracy. The nonprofit foundation has funded more than 60 projects aimed at promoting civil society in Ukraine, and the NED’s president, Carl Gershman, has called that country “the biggest prize.” After Yanukovych won Ukraine’s presidential election in February 2010, the NED decided he was undermining its goals, and so it stepped up its efforts to support the opposition and strengthen the country’s democratic institutions.

When Russian leaders look at Western social engineering in Ukraine, they worry that their country might be next. And such fears are hardly groundless. In September 2013, Gershman wrote in The Washington Post, “Ukraine’s choice to join Europe will accelerate the demise of the ideology of Russian imperialism that Putin represents.” He added: “Russians, too, face a choice, and Putin may find himself on the losing end not just in the near abroad but within Russia itself.”

CREATING A CRISIS


    Imagine the American outrage if China built an impressive military alliance and tried to include Canada and Mexico.

The West’s triple package of policies -- NATO enlargement, EU expansion, and democracy promotion -- added fuel to a fire waiting to ignite. The spark came in November 2013, when Yanukovych rejected a major economic deal he had been negotiating with the EU and decided to accept a $15 billion Russian counteroffer instead. That decision gave rise to antigovernment demonstrations that escalated over the following three months and that by mid-February had led to the deaths of some one hundred protesters. Western emissaries hurriedly flew to Kiev to resolve the crisis. On February 21, the government and the opposition struck a deal that allowed Yanukovych to stay in power until new elections were held. But it immediately fell apart, and Yanukovych fled to Russia the next day. The new government in Kiev was pro-Western and anti-Russian to the core, and it contained four high-ranking members who could legitimately be labeled neofascists.

Although the full extent of U.S. involvement has not yet come to light, it is clear that Washington backed the coup. Nuland and Republican Senator John McCain participated in antigovernment demonstrations, and Geoffrey Pyatt, the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, proclaimed after Yanukovych’s toppling that it was “a day for the history books.” As a leaked telephone recording revealed, Nuland had advocated regime change and wanted the Ukrainian politician Arseniy Yatsenyuk to become prime minister in the new government, which he did. No wonder Russians of all persuasions think the West played a role in Yanukovych’s ouster.

For Putin, the time to act against Ukraine and the West had arrived. Shortly after February 22, he ordered Russian forces to take Crimea from Ukraine, and soon after that, he incorporated it into Russia. The task proved relatively easy, thanks to the thousands of Russian troops already stationed at a naval base in the Crimean port of Sevastopol. Crimea also made for an easy target since ethnic Russians compose roughly 60 percent of its population. Most of them wanted out of Ukraine.

Next, Putin put massive pressure on the new government in Kiev to discourage it from siding with the West against Moscow, making it clear that he would wreck Ukraine as a functioning state before he would allow it to become a Western stronghold on Russia’s doorstep. Toward that end, he has provided advisers, arms, and diplomatic support to the Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, who are pushing the country toward civil war. He has massed a large army on the Ukrainian border, threatening to invade if the government cracks down on the rebels. And he has sharply raised the price of the natural gas Russia sells to Ukraine and demanded payment for past exports. Putin is playing hardball.

THE DIAGNOSIS


Putin’s actions should be easy to comprehend. A huge expanse of flat land that Napoleonic France, imperial Germany, and Nazi Germany all crossed to strike at Russia itself, Ukraine serves as a buffer state of enormous strategic importance to Russia. No Russian leader would tolerate a military alliance that was Moscow’s mortal enemy until recently moving into Ukraine. Nor would any Russian leader stand idly by while the West helped install a government there that was determined to integrate Ukraine into the West.

Washington may not like Moscow’s position, but it should understand the logic behind it. This is Geopolitics 101: great powers are always sensitive to potential threats near their home territory. After all, the United States does not tolerate distant great powers deploying military forces anywhere in the Western Hemisphere, much less on its borders. Imagine the outrage in Washington if China built an impressive military alliance and tried to include Canada and Mexico in it. Logic aside, Russian leaders have told their Western counterparts on many occasions that they consider NATO expansion into Georgia and Ukraine unacceptable, along with any effort to turn those countries against Russia -- a message that the 2008 Russian-Georgian war also made crystal clear.

Officials from the United States and its European allies contend that they tried hard to assuage Russian fears and that Moscow should understand that NATO has no designs on Russia. In addition to continually denying that its expansion was aimed at containing Russia, the alliance has never permanently deployed military forces in its new member states. In 2002, it even created a body called the NATO-Russia Council in an effort to foster cooperation. To further mollify Russia, the United States announced in 2009 that it would deploy its new missile defense system on warships in European waters, at least initially, rather than on Czech or Polish territory. But none of these measures worked; the Russians remained steadfastly opposed to NATO enlargement, especially into Georgia and Ukraine. And it is the Russians, not the West, who ultimately get to decide what counts as a threat to them.

To understand why the West, especially the United States, failed to understand that its Ukraine policy was laying the groundwork for a major clash with Russia, one must go back to the mid-1990s, when the Clinton administration began advocating NATO expansion. Pundits advanced a variety of arguments for and against enlargement, but there was no consensus on what to do. Most eastern European émigrés in the United States and their relatives, for example, strongly supported expansion, because they wanted NATO to protect such countries as Hungary and Poland. A few realists also favored the policy because they thought Russia still needed to be contained.

But most realists opposed expansion, in the belief that a declining great power with an aging population and a one-dimensional economy did not in fact need to be contained. And they feared that enlargement would only give Moscow an incentive to cause trouble in eastern Europe. The U.S. diplomat George Kennan articulated this perspective in a 1998 interview, shortly after the U.S. Senate approved the first round of NATO expansion. “I think the Russians will gradually react quite adversely and it will affect their policies,” he said. “I think it is a tragic mistake. There was no reason for this whatsoever. No one was threatening anyone else.”

   The United States and its allies should abandon their plan to westernize Ukraine and instead aim to make it a neutral buffer.

Most liberals, on the other hand, favored enlargement, including many key members of the Clinton administration. They believed that the end of the Cold War had fundamentally transformed international politics and that a new, postnational order had replaced the realist logic that used to govern Europe. The United States was not only the “indispensable nation,” as Secretary of State Madeleine Albright put it; it was also a benign hegemon and thus unlikely to be viewed as a threat in Moscow. The aim, in essence, was to make the entire continent look like western Europe.

And so the United States and its allies sought to promote democracy in the countries of eastern Europe, increase economic interdependence among them, and embed them in international institutions. Having won the debate in the United States, liberals had little difficulty convincing their European allies to support NATO enlargement. After all, given the EU’s past achievements, Europeans were even more wedded than Americans to the idea that geopolitics no longer mattered and that an all-inclusive liberal order could maintain peace in Europe.

So thoroughly did liberals come to dominate the discourse about European security during the first decade of this century that even as the alliance adopted an open-door policy of growth, NATO expansion faced little realist opposition. The liberal worldview is now accepted dogma among U.S. officials. In March, for example, President Barack Obama delivered a speech about Ukraine in which he talked repeatedly about “the ideals” that motivate Western policy and how those ideals “have often been threatened by an older, more traditional view of power.” Secretary of State John Kerry’s response to the Crimea crisis reflected this same perspective: “You just don’t in the twenty-first century behave in nineteenth-century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped-up pretext.”

In essence, the two sides have been operating with different playbooks: Putin and his compatriots have been thinking and acting according to realist dictates, whereas their Western counterparts have been adhering to liberal ideas about international politics. The result is that the United States and its allies unknowingly provoked a major crisis over Ukraine.

BLAME GAME

In that same 1998 interview, Kennan predicted that NATO expansion would provoke a crisis, after which the proponents of expansion would “say that we always told you that is how the Russians are.” As if on cue, most Western officials have portrayed Putin as the real culprit in the Ukraine predicament. In March, according to The New York Times, German Chancellor Angela Merkel implied that Putin was irrational, telling Obama that he was “in another world.” Although Putin no doubt has autocratic tendencies, no evidence supports the charge that he is mentally unbalanced. On the contrary: he is a first-class strategist who should be feared and respected by anyone challenging him on foreign policy.

Other analysts allege, more plausibly, that Putin regrets the demise of the Soviet Union and is determined to reverse it by expanding Russia’s borders. According to this interpretation, Putin, having taken Crimea, is now testing the waters to see if the time is right to conquer Ukraine, or at least its eastern part, and he will eventually behave aggressively toward other countries in Russia’s neighborhood. For some in this camp, Putin represents a modern-day Adolf Hitler, and striking any kind of deal with him would repeat the mistake of Munich. Thus, NATO must admit Georgia and Ukraine to contain Russia before it dominates its neighbors and threatens western Europe.

This argument falls apart on close inspection. If Putin were committed to creating a greater Russia, signs of his intentions would almost certainly have arisen before February 22. But there is virtually no evidence that he was bent on taking Crimea, much less any other territory in Ukraine, before that date. Even Western leaders who supported NATO expansion were not doing so out of a fear that Russia was about to use military force. Putin’s actions in Crimea took them by complete surprise and appear to have been a spontaneous reaction to Yanukovych’s ouster. Right afterward, even Putin said he opposed Crimean secession, before quickly changing his mind.

Besides, even if it wanted to, Russia lacks the capability to easily conquer and annex eastern Ukraine, much less the entire country. Roughly 15 million people -- one-third of Ukraine’s population -- live between the Dnieper River, which bisects the country, and the Russian border. An overwhelming majority of those people want to remain part of Ukraine and would surely resist a Russian occupation. Furthermore, Russia’s mediocre army, which shows few signs of turning into a modern Wehrmacht, would have little chance of pacifying all of Ukraine. Moscow is also poorly positioned to pay for a costly occupation; its weak economy would suffer even more in the face of the resulting sanctions.

But even if Russia did boast a powerful military machine and an impressive economy, it would still probably prove unable to successfully occupy Ukraine. One need only consider the Soviet and U.S. experiences in Afghanistan, the U.S. experiences in Vietnam and Iraq, and the Russian experience in Chechnya to be reminded that military occupations usually end badly. Putin surely understands that trying to subdue Ukraine would be like swallowing a porcupine. His response to events there has been defensive, not offensive.

A WAY OUT

Given that most Western leaders continue to deny that Putin’s behavior might be motivated by legitimate security concerns, it is unsurprising that they have tried to modify it by doubling down on their existing policies and have punished Russia to deter further aggression. Although Kerry has maintained that “all options are on the table,” neither the United States nor its NATO allies are prepared to use force to defend Ukraine. The West is relying instead on economic sanctions to coerce Russia into ending its support for the insurrection in eastern Ukraine. In July, the United States and the EU put in place their third round of limited sanctions, targeting mainly high-level individuals closely tied to the Russian government and some high-profile banks, energy companies, and defense firms. They also threatened to unleash another, tougher round of sanctions, aimed at whole sectors of the Russian economy.

Such measures will have little effect. Harsh sanctions are likely off the table anyway; western European countries, especially Germany, have resisted imposing them for fear that Russia might retaliate and cause serious economic damage within the EU. But even if the United States could convince its allies to enact tough measures, Putin would probably not alter his decision-making. History shows that countries will absorb enormous amounts of punishment in order to protect their core strategic interests. There is no reason to think Russia represents an exception to this rule.

Western leaders have also clung to the provocative policies that precipitated the crisis in the first place. In April, U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden met with Ukrainian legislators and told them, “This is a second opportunity to make good on the original promise made by the Orange Revolution.” John Brennan, the director of the CIA, did not help things when, that same month, he visited Kiev on a trip the White House said was aimed at improving security cooperation with the Ukrainian government.

The EU, meanwhile, has continued to push its Eastern Partnership. In March, José Manuel Barroso, the president of the European Commission, summarized EU thinking on Ukraine, saying, “We have a debt, a duty of solidarity with that country, and we will work to have them as close as possible to us.” And sure enough, on June 27, the EU and Ukraine signed the economic agreement that Yanukovych had fatefully rejected seven months earlier. Also in June, at a meeting of NATO members’ foreign ministers, it was agreed that the alliance would remain open to new members, although the foreign ministers refrained from mentioning Ukraine by name. “No third country has a veto over NATO enlargement,” announced Anders Fogh Rasmussen, NATO’s secretary-general. The foreign ministers also agreed to support various measures to improve Ukraine’s military capabilities in such areas as command and control, logistics, and cyberdefense. Russian leaders have naturally recoiled at these actions; the West’s response to the crisis will only make a bad situation worse.

There is a solution to the crisis in Ukraine, however -- although it would require the West to think about the country in a fundamentally new way. The United States and its allies should abandon their plan to westernize Ukraine and instead aim to make it a neutral buffer between NATO and Russia, akin to Austria’s position during the Cold War. Western leaders should acknowledge that Ukraine matters so much to Putin that they cannot support an anti-Russian regime there. This would not mean that a future Ukrainian government would have to be pro-Russian or anti-NATO. On the contrary, the goal should be a sovereign Ukraine that falls in neither the Russian nor the Western camp.

To achieve this end, the United States and its allies should publicly rule out NATO’s expansion into both Georgia and Ukraine. The West should also help fashion an economic rescue plan for Ukraine funded jointly by the EU, the International Monetary Fund, Russia, and the United States -- a proposal that Moscow should welcome, given its interest in having a prosperous and stable Ukraine on its western flank. And the West should considerably limit its social-engineering efforts inside Ukraine. It is time to put an end to Western support for another Orange Revolution. Nevertheless, U.S. and European leaders should encourage Ukraine to respect minority rights, especially the language rights of its Russian speakers.

Some may argue that changing policy toward Ukraine at this late date would seriously damage U.S. credibility around the world. There would undoubtedly be certain costs, but the costs of continuing a misguided strategy would be much greater. Furthermore, other countries are likely to respect a state that learns from its mistakes and ultimately devises a policy that deals effectively with the problem at hand. That option is clearly open to the United States.

One also hears the claim that Ukraine has the right to determine whom it wants to ally with and the Russians have no right to prevent Kiev from joining the West. This is a dangerous way for Ukraine to think about its foreign policy choices. The sad truth is that might often makes right when great-power politics are at play. Abstract rights such as self-determination are largely meaningless when powerful states get into brawls with weaker states. Did Cuba have the right to form a military alliance with the Soviet Union during the Cold War? The United States certainly did not think so, and the Russians think the same way about Ukraine joining the West. It is in Ukraine’s interest to understand these facts of life and tread carefully when dealing with its more powerful neighbor.

Even if one rejects this analysis, however, and believes that Ukraine has the right to petition to join the EU and NATO, the fact remains that the United States and its European allies have the right to reject these requests. There is no reason that the West has to accommodate Ukraine if it is bent on pursuing a wrong-headed foreign policy, especially if its defense is not a vital interest. Indulging the dreams of some Ukrainians is not worth the animosity and strife it will cause, especially for the Ukrainian people.

Of course, some analysts might concede that NATO handled relations with Ukraine poorly and yet still maintain that Russia constitutes an enemy that will only grow more formidable over time -- and that the West therefore has no choice but to continue its present policy. But this viewpoint is badly mistaken. Russia is a declining power, and it will only get weaker with time. Even if Russia were a rising power, moreover, it would still make no sense to incorporate Ukraine into NATO. The reason is simple: the United States and its European allies do not consider Ukraine to be a core strategic interest, as their unwillingness to use military force to come to its aid has proved. It would therefore be the height of folly to create a new NATO member that the other members have no intention of defending. NATO has expanded in the past because liberals assumed the alliance would never have to honor its new security guarantees, but Russia’s recent power play shows that granting Ukraine NATO membership could put Russia and the West on a collision course.

Sticking with the current policy would also complicate Western relations with Moscow on other issues. The United States needs Russia’s assistance to withdraw U.S. equipment from Afghanistan through Russian territory, reach a nuclear agreement with Iran, and stabilize the situation in Syria. In fact, Moscow has helped Washington on all three of these issues in the past; in the summer of 2013, it was Putin who pulled Obama’s chestnuts out of the fire by forging the deal under which Syria agreed to relinquish its chemical weapons, thereby avoiding the U.S. military strike that Obama had threatened. The United States will also someday need Russia’s help containing a rising China. Current U.S. policy, however, is only driving Moscow and Beijing closer together.

The United States and its European allies now face a choice on Ukraine. They can continue their current policy, which will exacerbate hostilities with Russia and devastate Ukraine in the process -- a scenario in which everyone would come out a loser. Or they can switch gears and work to create a prosperous but neutral Ukraine, one that does not threaten Russia and allows the West to repair its relations with Moscow. With that approach, all sides would win.


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Everyman Standing Order 01: In the Face of Tyranny; Everybody Stands, Nobody Runs.
Everyman Standing Order 02: Everyman is Responsible for Energy and Security.
Everyman Standing Order 03: Everyman knows Timing is Critical in any Movement.
   

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‘German politicians are US puppets’

Fri, Nov 7, 2014
By Udo ULFKOTTE (Germany)

http://orientalreview.org/2014/11/07/german-politicians-are-us-puppets/

“Now the Americans are even considering blowing up a nuclear power plant in Ukraine and then insisting that the culprits were either separatists or Russians,” claims the German journalist Udo Ulfkotte, former correspondent from Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, one of the largest German newspapers. He has published a book, Gekaufte Journalisten (“Purchased Journalists”), in which he describes how American and German politicians sway the German media, so that those journalists give the desired spin to world events. Ulfkotte claims that reporters are urged to bias their writing primarily to favor the American position and to oppose Russia. Udo Ulfkotte spoke to about how exactly this occurs and about the path his life is taking today after these revelations were made public.

Q: Mr. Ulfkotte, you’ve said that you were given a lot of money to write pro-American articles. How profitable is to be a pro-American journalist in Germany?

Udo Ulfkotte: I didn’t get money – I got gifts. Things like gold watches, diving equipment, and trips with accommodations in five-star hotels. I know many German journalists who at some point were able to take advantage of this to buy themselves a vacation home abroad. But much more important than the money and gifts is the fact that you’re offered support if you write pieces that are pro-American or pro-NATO. If you don’t do it, your career won’t go anywhere – you’ll find yourself assigned to sit in the office and sort through letters to the editor.

Q: According to what you’ve said, journalists are corrupted surreptitiously, by inviting them for all-expense-paid trips to the US. But do serious professionals really sell themselves for so little?

UU: When you fly to the US again and again and never have to pay for anything there, and you’re invited to interview American politicians, you’re moving closer and closer to the circles of power. And you want to remain within this circle of the elite, so you write to please them. Everyone wants to be a celebrity journalist who gets exclusive access to famous politicians. But one wrong sentence and your career as a celebrity journalist is over. Everyone knows it. And everyone’s in on it.

Q: Why have you only now decided to go public with your opinion about German journalism?

UU: I’ve had three heart attacks, I no longer have children I have to support, and day after day I kept watching the Americans on the news, once again gearing up for their next war. This time it’s in Ukraine against Russia. But it’s always the same game. Not even a complete idiot could have been oblivious to the Americans’ one-sided anti-Moscow propaganda after the crash of flight MH17. Now the Americans are even considering blowing up a nuclear power plant in Ukraine and then insisting that the culprits were either separatists or Russians. I hear it all the time. It’s unconscionable!

Q: You claim that Germany is a “banana republic.” Isn’t that an overly harsh assessment? After all, Germany does have opposition movements, including radical ones, and the media is critical of the government. For example, the recent broadcast of the TV program Die Anstalt caused quite a stir with its pointed criticism of the heavily biased German media.

UU: After that broadcast aired, with its journalists using satire (!) to express criticism of the German media – and, above all, against its purely pro-American coverage of events – complaints were filed and they were taken to court. This is perfect evidence of the fact that Germany is a banana republic: you can’t even use satire to criticize the one-sided coverage. We have only the appearance of a free press. It’s crazy.

Q: What do you think about the targeting of politicians whom the German press has lumped together in a group known as “Russian sympathizers” (Schröder, Gysi, Wagenknecht, and others), and the pro-Russian journalists?

UU: Those “Russian sympathizers” are well-educated, sincere people. I say that, although I’m not aligned with them politically. But I respect their integrity. The fact that they’re being targeted is typical of banana republics such as Germany, where any deviation from mainstream opinion is harshly suppressed.

Q: You mentioned that Germany is still concealing the fact that in March of 1988, the regime of Saddam Hussein – at the time a Western ally – committed an act of genocide in a Kurdish city near the Iranian border, using chemical weapons manufactured in Germany. Can it be true that in all these years not a single newspaper, even an opposition paper, has written about that?

UU: No, they did write about it, but it took them a year to do so! I photographed Iranians who had been poisoned by German chemical weapons under the eyes of the US, but that was not supposed to be made public. At that time, the Iraqis, Germans, and Americans were celebrating their “final” victory over the Iranians. I found it ghoulish that in Baghdad they were celebrating the fact that they had jointly gassed human beings. I suffered greatly from the gas – later I got cancer. I did everything I could to record what had happened there, hoping that it would prompt an international outcry. But no one ever published it. Instead everyone celebrated their victory. To this day I ask myself why it’s no problem for German chancellors to travel to Israel and go down on their knees and ask the Jews for forgiveness for gassing them, but then the Iranians killed by German gas are just second-class citizens? Have you ever heard of a German chancellor apologizing for that in Tehran? We can see that German politicians are nothing more than puppets of the US. They should obediently do as Washington tells them. We continue to be a US colony, a banana republic, and not a free country.

939100Q: You say that intelligence services provided you with information about Libya, which you published under your own name. And you claim that that was doing what you were assigned to do by the CIA and the Bundesnachrichtendienst. But if the information was interesting and true, couldn’t it be that your interests simply coincided? After all, you could have refused to publish it.

UU: Yes, yes, I could have said “no.” You know, the ADAC – the biggest German automobile club – had an employee working for its helicopter rescue service who refused to cooperate secretly with the BND. He was immediately expelled from the ADAC and then went to court, but the judges decided that a person cannot refuse to work with the BND, and it’s not a problem that one might lose one’s job for resisting. Do you get it? Do you see what I’m saying? I didn’t want to be unemployed.

Q: You’ve said that the intelligence agencies ordered your home to be raided six times. But if you were simply publishing what the intelligence agencies gave you, why did they feel they needed to search your house? Or, on the other hand, if you were still coming up with information on your own that the intelligence agencies were trying to conceal, then doesn’t it mean that you were still acting as an independent journalist, and not at all like an “unofficial CIA agent”?

UU: That’s a translation error – it wasn’t the intelligence agencies that ordered the raids, but the secret state police. What the Nazis used to call the Gestapo is now called the Department of State Security. And they came and conducted raids six times under the pretext that I was betraying state secrets. These types of scare tactics are typical of banana republics.

Q: You say that the publication of this book could create problems for you. What kind, for example?

UU: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung informed me in writing that they will file court charges against me for violating criminal, civil, and labor legislation, as well as corporate standards in journalism. That alone could destroy me. I’ve heard that many others want to put me in jail because I’ve once again exposed “state secrets.” Perhaps it would be worth it for me to fly to Moscow like Edward Snowden and ask for asylum there. Let’s wait and see how the leaders of the banana republic of Germany react, because they’ve been compromised, and everyone can read in my bestselling book how they manufacture the appearance of a free press here, and that democracy in Germany is merely an illusion.

Source in Russian: http://www.vz.ru/world/2014/10/24/712196.html

Translated by ORIENTAL REVIEW


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Everyman Standing Order 01: In the Face of Tyranny; Everybody Stands, Nobody Runs.
Everyman Standing Order 02: Everyman is Responsible for Energy and Security.
Everyman Standing Order 03: Everyman knows Timing is Critical in any Movement.
   

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Everyman decries immorality
GERALD CELENTE – World is in a CURRENCY WAR and Heading Towards WORLD WAR 3
November 8th, 2014

http://investmentwatchblog.com/gerald-celente-world-is-in-a-currency-war-and-heading-towards-world-war-3/

Gerald Celente, publisher of the Trends Journal tells us where he thinks the next military threat for the US will be and what’s in store for the economic relationship between the US and Russia If there’s one thing that should be clear, it’s that nothing the government or their banking partners have done to solve the economic crisis has been for your benefit. They’ve enriched themselves, yet again, on the backs of the American people.

All the while, they’ve told us that everything is getting better. But anyone who’s paying attention know that nothing of the sort has happened.

We continue to shed jobs. Hundreds of thousands of people are still losing their homes. Personal debt is rapidly approaching 2007 levels. The U.S. government has borrowed more money than what we can ever hope to repay. What will it take to change the course of the future? As America, the world superpower, gears up to elect its commander-in-chief, each candidate touts his leadership experience; Obama the Osama Slayer vs. Romney the Corporate Commando. Each lists his credentials, saying in effect, “this is why I should lead and why you should follow your leader.” “gerald celente” 2014 war trends trending future military u.s. america “united states” nuclear history ww3 “world war 3″ WWIII biological finance “stock market” economy science leader world global “currency war” currency forex geopolitics sanctions russia japan “forex trading” ww2 troops “u.s. army” trade gold silver bullion china yuan usd dollar collapse oil 2015 news media europe newspaper “sell gold” “bank account” savings debt “savings account” banking “elite nwo agenda” recession depression obama ebola bioweapon false flag attack federal reserve isis isil is israel zion illuminati islamic state alex jones infowars david icke bilderberg 2015 jim rogers max keiser marc faber

There is no “We the People” until “I the Person” is willing to stand up and speak for himself or herself. Paul Craig Roberts – former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury under President Reagan, former editor of the Wall Street Journal, listed by Who’s Who in America as one of the 1,000 most influential political thinkers in the world, PhD economist – wrote an article yesterday about the build up of hostilities between the U.S. and Russia titled, simply: “War Is Coming”. In the article, Roberts notes: As reported by Tyler Durden of Zero Hedge, the Russian response to the extra-legal ruling of a corrupt court in the Netherlands, which had no jurisdiction over the case on which it ruled, awarding $50 billion dollars from the Russian government to shareholders of Yukos, a corrupt entity that was looting Russia and evading taxes, is telling. Asked what Russia would do about the ruling, an advisor to President Putin replied, “There is a war coming in Europe.” Do you really think this ruling matters?”

In January, well-known economist Nouriel Roubini tweeted from the gathering of the rich and powerful at the World Economic Forum in Davos: Former Goldman Sachs technical analyst Charles Nenner – who has made some big accurate calls, and counts major hedge funds, banks, brokerage houses, and high net worth individuals as clients – saysthere will be “a major war”, which will drive the Dow to 5,000. Former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan (and many world leaders) admitted that the Iraq war was really about oil, and former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill says that Bush planned the Iraq war before 9/11. And see this and this. Libya, Syria, Iran and Russia are all oil-producing countries as well … We’re in the middle of a global currency war – i.e. a situation where nations all compete to devalue their currencies the most in order to boost exports. Brazilian president Rousseff said in 2010: Given that China, Russia, India, Brazil and South Africa have just joined together to create a $100 billion bank based in China, and that more and more trades are being settled in Yuan or Rubles – instead of dollars – the currency war is hotting up. What happened to [Libya's] Mr. Gaddafi, many speculate the real reason he was ousted was that he was planning an all-African currency for conducting trade. The same thing happened to him that happened to Saddam because the US doesn’t want any solid competing currency out there vs the dollar. You know Gaddafi was talking about a gold dinar


---------------------------
Everyman Standing Order 01: In the Face of Tyranny; Everybody Stands, Nobody Runs.
Everyman Standing Order 02: Everyman is Responsible for Energy and Security.
Everyman Standing Order 03: Everyman knows Timing is Critical in any Movement.
   

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Everyman decries immorality
The open source revolution is coming and it will conquer the 1% - ex CIA spy

The man who trained more than 66 countries in open source methods calls for re-invention of intelligence to re-engineer Earth

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2014/jun/19/open-source-revolution-conquer-one-percent-cia-spy

Robert David Steele, former Marine, CIA case officer, and US co-founder of the US Marine Corps intelligence activity, is a man on a mission. But it's a mission that frightens the US intelligence establishment to its core.
With 18 years experience working across the US intelligence community, followed by 20 more years in commercial intelligence and training, Steele's exemplary career has spanned almost all areas of both the clandestine world.

Steele started off as a Marine Corps infantry and intelligence officer. After four years on active duty, he joined the CIA for about a decade before co-founding the Marine Corps Intelligence Activity, where he was deputy director. Widely recognised as the leader of the Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) paradigm, Steele went on to write the handbooks on OSINT for NATO, the US Defense Intelligence Agency and the U.S. Special Operations Forces. In passing, he personally trained 7,500 officers from over 66 countries.

In 1992, despite opposition from the CIA, he obtained Marine Corps permission to organise a landmark international conference on open source intelligence – the paradigm of deriving information to support policy decisions not through secret activities, but from open public sources available to all. The conference was such a success it brought in over 620 attendees from the intelligence world.

But the CIA wasn't happy, and ensured that Steele was prohibited from running a second conference. The clash prompted him to resign from his position as second-ranking civilian in Marine Corps intelligence, and pursue the open source paradigm elsewhere. He went on to found and head up the Open Source Solutions Network Inc. and later the non-profit Earth Intelligence Network which runs the Public Intelligence Blog.
Robert David Steele Former CIA spy and Open Source Intelligence pioneer, Robert David Steele speaking at the Inter-American Defense Board in 2013

I first came across Steele when I discovered his Amazon review of my third book, The War on Truth: 9/11, Disinformation and the Anatomy of Terrorism. A voracious reader, Steele is the number 1 Amazon reviewer for non-fiction across 98 categories. He also reviewed my latest book, A User's Guide to the Crisis of Civilization, but told me I'd overlooked an important early work – 'A More Secure World: Our Shared Responsibility, Report of the UN High-Level Panel on Threats, Challenges, and Change.'

Last month, Steele presented a startling paper at the Libtech conference in New York, sponsored by the Internet Society and Reclaim. Drawing on principles set out in his latest book, The Open-Source Everything Manifesto: Transparency, Truth and Trust, he told the audience that all the major preconditions for revolution – set out in his 1976 graduate thesis – were now present in the United States and Britain.

Steele's book is a must-read, a powerful yet still pragmatic roadmap to a new civilisational paradigm that simultaneously offers a trenchant, unrelenting critique of the prevailing global order. His interdisciplinary 'whole systems' approach dramatically connects up the increasing corruption, inefficiency and unaccountability of the intelligence system and its political and financial masters with escalating inequalities and environmental crises. But he also offers a comprehensive vision of hope that activist networks like Reclaim are implementing today.

"We are at the end of a five-thousand-year-plus historical process during which human society grew in scale while it abandoned the early indigenous wisdom councils and communal decision-making," he writes in The Open Source Everything Manifesto. "Power was centralised in the hands of increasingly specialised 'elites' and 'experts' who not only failed to achieve all they promised but used secrecy and the control of information to deceive the public into allowing them to retain power over community resources that they ultimately looted."

Today's capitalism, he argues, is inherently predatory and destructive:

    "Over the course of the last centuries, the commons was fenced, and everything from agriculture to water was commoditised without regard to the true cost in non-renewable resources. Human beings, who had spent centuries evolving away from slavery, were re-commoditised by the Industrial Era."

Open source everything, in this context, offers us the chance to build on what we've learned through industrialisation, to learn from our mistakes, and catalyse the re-opening of the commons, in the process breaking the grip of defunct power structures and enabling the possibility of prosperity for all.

    "Sharing, not secrecy, is the means by which we realise such a lofty destiny as well as create infinite wealth. The wealth of networks, the wealth of knowledge, revolutionary wealth - all can create a nonzero win-win Earth that works for one hundred percent of humanity. This is the 'utopia' that Buckminster Fuller foresaw, now within our reach."

The goal, he concludes, is to reject:


    "... concentrated illicitly aggregated and largely phantom wealth in favor of community wealth defined by community knowledge, community sharing of information, and community definition of truth derived in transparency and authenticity, the latter being the ultimate arbiter of shared wealth."

Despite this unabashedly radical vision, Steele is hugely respected by senior military intelligence experts across the world. As a researcher at the US Army War College's Strategic Studies Institute, he has authored several monographs advocating the need for open source methods to transform the craft of intelligence. He has lectured to the US State Department and Department of Homeland Security as well as National Security Councils in various countries, and his new book has received accolades from senior intelligence officials across multiple countries including France and Turkey.

Yet he remains an outspoken critic of US intelligence practices and what he sees as their integral role in aggravating rather than ameliorating the world's greatest threats and challenges.

This week, I had the good fortune of being able to touch base with Steele to dig deeper into his recent analysis of the future of US politics in the context of our accelerating environmental challenges. The first thing I asked him was where he sees things going over the next decade, given his holistic take.

"Properly educated people always appreciate holistic approaches to any challenge. This means that they understand both cause and effect, and intertwined complexities," he said. "A major part of our problem in the public policy arena is the decline in intelligence with integrity among key politicians and staff at the same time that think tanks and universities and non-governmental organisations have also suffered a similar intellectual diminishment.

"My early graduate education was in the 1970's when Limits to Growth and World Federalism were the rage. Both sought to achieve an over-view of systemic challenges, but both also suffered from the myth of top-down hubris. What was clear in the 1970s, that has been obscured by political and financial treason in the past half-century, is that everything is connected – what we do in the way of paving over wetlands, or in poisoning ground water 'inadvertently' because of our reliance on pesticides and fertilisers that are not subject to the integrity of the 'Precautionary Principle,' ultimately leads to climate catastrophes that are acts of man, not acts of god."

He points me to his tremendous collection of reviews of books on climate change, disease, environmental degradation, peak oil, and water scarcity. "I see five major overlapping threats on the immediate horizon," he continues. "They are all related: the collapse of complex societies, the acceleration of the Earth's demise with changes that used to take 10,000 years now taking three or less, predatory or shock capitalism and financial crime out of the City of London and Wall Street, and political corruption at scale, to include the west supporting 42 of 44 dictators. We are close to multiple mass catastrophes."

What about the claim that the US is on the brink of revolution? "Revolution is overthrow – the complete reversal of the status quo ante. We are at the end of centuries of what Lionel Tiger calls 'The Manufacture of Evil,' in which merchant banks led by the City of London have conspired with captive governments to concentrate wealth and commoditise everything including humans. What revolution means in practical terms is that balance has been lost and the status quo ante is unsustainable. There are two 'stops' on greed to the nth degree: the first is the carrying capacity of Earth, and the second is human sensibility. We are now at a point where both stops are activating."
Robert Steele - preconditions for revolution Former CIA officer's matrix on the preconditions for revolution

It's not just the US, he adds. "The preconditions of revolution exist in the UK, and most western countries. The number of active pre-conditions is quite stunning, from elite isolation to concentrated wealth to inadequate socialisation and education, to concentrated land holdings to loss of authority to repression of new technologies especially in relation to energy, to the atrophy of the public sector and spread of corruption, to media dishonesty, to mass unemployment of young men and on and on and on."

So why isn't it happening yet?
"Preconditions are not the same as precipitants. We are waiting for our Tunisian fruit seller. The public will endure great repression, especially when most media outlets and schools are actively aiding the repressive meme of 'you are helpless, this is the order of things.' When we have a scandal so powerful that it cannot be ignored by the average Briton or American, we will have a revolution that overturns the corrupt political systems in both countries, and perhaps puts many banks out of business. Vaclav Havel calls this 'The Power of the Powerless.' One spark, one massive fire."

But we need more than revolution, in the sense of overthrow, to effect change, surely. How does your manifesto for 'open source everything' fit into this? "The west has pursued an industrialisation path that allows for the privatisation of wealth from the commons, along with the criminalisation of commons rights of the public, as well as the externalisation of all true costs. Never mind that fracking produces earthquakes and poisons aquifers – corrupt politicians at local, state or province, and national levels are all too happy to take money for looking the other way. Our entire commercial, diplomatic, and informational systems are now cancerous. When trade treaties have secret sections – or are entirely secret – one can be certain the public is being screwed and the secrecy is an attempt to avoid accountability. Secrecy enables corruption. So also does an inattentive public enable corruption."

Is this a crisis of capitalism, then? Does capitalism need to end for us to resolve these problems? And if so, how? "Predatory capitalism is based on the privatisation of profit and the externalisation of cost. It is an extension of the fencing of the commons, of enclosures, along with the criminalisation of prior common customs and rights. What we need is a system that fully accounts for all costs. Whether we call that capitalism or not is irrelevant to me. But doing so would fundamentally transform the dynamic of present day capitalism, by making capital open source. For example, and as calculated by my colleague JZ Liszkiewicz, a white cotton T-shirt contains roughly 570 gallons of water, 11 to 29 gallons of fuel, and a number of toxins and emissions including pesticides, diesel exhaust, and heavy metals and other volatile compounds – it also generally includes child labor. Accounting for those costs and their real social, human and environmental impacts has totally different implications for how we should organise production and consumption than current predatory capitalism."

So what exactly do you mean by open source everything? "We have over 5 billion human brains that are the one infinite resource available to us going forward. Crowd-sourcing and cognitive surplus are two terms of art for the changing power dynamic between those at the top that are ignorant and corrupt, and those across the bottom that are attentive and ethical. The open source ecology is made up of a wide range of opens – open farm technology, open source software, open hardware, open networks, open money, open small business technology, open patents – to name just a few. The key point is that they must all develop together, otherwise the existing system will isolate them into ineffectiveness. Open data is largely worthless unless you have open hardware and open software. Open government demands open cloud and open spectrum, or money will dominate feeds and speeds."
Robert Steele Robert Steele's vision for open source systems

On 1st May, Steele sent an open letter to US vice president Joe Biden requesting him to consider establishing an Open Source Agency that would transform the operation of the intelligence community, dramatically reduce costs, increasing oversight and accountability, while increasing access to the best possible information to support holistic policy-making. To date, he has received no response.

I'm not particularly surprised. Open source everything pretty much undermines everything the national security state stands for. Why bother even asking vice president Biden to consider it? "The national security state is rooted in secrecy as a means of avoiding accountability. My first book, On Intelligence: Spies and Secrecy in an Open World – which by the way had a foreword from Senator David Boren, the immediate past chairman of the Senate Select Committee for Intelligence - made it quite clear that the national security state is an expensive, ineffective monstrosity that is simply not fit for purpose. In that sense, the national security state is it's own worst enemy – it's bound to fail."

Given his standing as an intelligence expert, Steele's criticisms of US intelligence excesses are beyond scathing – they are damning. "Most of what is produced through secret methods is not actually intelligence at all. It is simply secret information that is, most of the time, rather generic and therefore not actually very useful for making critical decisions at a government level. The National Security Agency (NSA) has not prevented any terrorist incidents. CIA cannot even get the population of Syria correct and provides no intelligence - decision-support - to most cabinet secretaries, assistant secretaries, and department heads. Indeed General Tony Zinni, when he was commander in chief of the US Central Command as it was at war, is on record as saying that he received, 'at best,' a meagre 4% of what he needed to know from secret sources and methods."

So does open source mean you are calling for abolition of intelligence agencies as we know them, I ask. "I'm a former spy and I believe we still need spies and secrecy, but we need to redirect the vast majority of the funds now spent on secrecy toward savings and narrowly focused endeavors at home. For instance, utterly ruthless counterintelligence against corruption, or horrendous evils like paedophilia.

"Believe it or not, 95% of what we need for ethical evidence-based decision support cannot be obtained through the secret methods of standard intelligence practices. But it can be obtained quite openly and cheaply from academics, civil society, commerce, governments, law enforcement organisations, the media, all militaries, and non-governmental organisations. An Open Source Agency, as I've proposed it, would not just meet 95% of our intelligence requirements, it would do the same at all levels of government and carry over by enriching education, commerce, and research – it would create what I called in 1995 a 'Smart Nation.'

"The whole point of Open Source Everything is to restore public agency. Open Source is the only form of information and information technology that is affordable to the majority, interoperable across all boundaries, and rapidly scalable from local to global without the curse of overhead that proprietary corporations impose."
Robert Steele's graphic on open source systems thinking Robert Steele's graphic on open source systems thinking

It's clear to me that when Steele talks about intelligence as 'decision-support,' he really does intend that we grasp "all information in all languages all the time" – that we do multidisciplinary research spanning centuries into the past as well as into the future. His most intriguing premise is that the 1% are simply not as powerful as they, and we, assume them to be. "The collective buying power of the five billion poor is four times that of the one billion rich according to the late Harvard business thinker Prof C. K. Prahalad – open source everything is about the five billion poor coming together to reclaim their collective wealth and mobilise it to transform their lives. There is zero chance of the revolution being put down. Public agency is emergent, and the ability of the public to literally put any bank or corporation out of business overnight is looming. To paraphrase Abe Lincoln, you cannot screw all of the people all of the time. We're there. All we lack is a major precipitant – our Tunisian fruit seller. When it happens the revolution will be deep and lasting."

The Arab spring analogy has its negatives. So far, there really isn't much to root for. I want to know what's to stop this revolution from turning into a violent, destructive mess. Steele is characteristically optimistic. "I have struggled with this question. What I see happening is an end to national dictat and the emergence of bottom-up clarity, diversity, integrity, and sustainability. Individual towns across the USA are now nullifying federal and state regulations - for example gag laws on animal cruelty, blanket permissions for fracking. Those such as my colleague Parag Khanna that speak to a new era of city-states are correct in my view. Top down power has failed in a most spectacular manner, and bottom-up consensus power is emergent. 'Not in my neighborhood' is beginning to trump 'Because I say so.' The one unlimited resource we have on the planet is the human brain – the current strategy of 1% capitalism is failing because it is killing the Golden Goose at multiple levels. Unfortunately, the gap between those with money and power and those who actually know what they are talking about has grown catastrophic. The rich are surrounded by sycophants and pretenders whose continued employment demands that they not question the premises. As Larry Summers lectured Elizabeth Warren, 'insiders do not criticise insiders.'"

But how can activists actually start moving toward the open source vision now? "For starters, there are eight 'tribes' that among them can bring together all relevant information: academia, civil society including labor unions and religions, commerce especially small business, government especially local, law enforcement, media, military, and non-government/non-profit. At every level from local to global, across every mission area, we need to create stewardship councils integrating personalities and information from all eight tribes. We don't need to wait around for someone else to get started. All of us who recognise the vitality of this possibility can begin creating these new grassroots structures from the bottom-up, right now."

So how does open source everything have the potential to 're-engineer the Earth'? For me, this is the most important question, and Steele's answer is inspiring. "Open Source Everything overturns top-down 'because I say so at the point of a gun' power. Open Source Everything makes truth rather than violence the currency of power. Open Source Everything demands that true cost economics and the indigenous concept of 'seventh generation thinking' – how will this affect society 200 years ahead – become central. Most of our problems today can be traced to the ascendance of unilateral militarism, virtual colonialism, and predatory capitalism, all based on force and lies and encroachment on the commons. The national security state works for the City of London and Wall Street – both are about to be toppled by a combination of Eastern alternative banking and alternative international development capabilities, and individuals who recognise that they have the power to pull their money out of the banks and not buy the consumer goods that subsidise corruption and the concentration of wealth. The opportunity to take back the commons for the benefit of humanity as a whole is open – here and now."

For Steele, the open source revolution is inevitable, simply because the demise of the system presided over by the 1% cannot be stopped – and because the alternatives to reclaiming the commons are too dismal to contemplate. We have no choice but to step up.

"My motto, a play on the CIA motto that is disgraced every day, is 'the truth at any cost lowers all other costs'", he tells me. "Others wiser than I have pointed out that nature bats last. We are at the end of an era in which lies can be used to steal from the public and the commons. We are at the beginning of an era in which truth in public service can restore us all to a state of grace."

Dr. Nafeez Ahmed is an international security journalist and academic. He is the author of A User's Guide to the Crisis of Civilization: And How to Save It, and the forthcoming science fiction thriller, ZERO POINT. ZERO POINT is set in a near future following a Fourth Iraq War.


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Vladimir Putin: oil price decline has been engineered by political forces

As slumping oil prices dampen Russia's economic outlook, the country's President has said that "at some moments of crisis it starts to feel like it is the politics that prevails in the pricing of energy resources".

By Peter Spence, Economics Correspondent
9:46PM GMT 06 Nov 2014

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/energy/oilandgas/11215063/Vladimir-Putin-oil-price-decline-has-been-engineered-by-political-forces.html

Recent tumbles in the value of oil on global markets have been the creation of politicians, Vladimir Putin, President of Russia, suggested on Thursday.

The Russian state has been heavily exposed to slumping oil values, widely viewed to be the result of a supply glut.

“The obvious reason for the decline in global oil prices is the slowdown in the rate of [global] economic growth which means consumption is being reduced in a whole range of countries”, Mr Putin said.

In addition to this, “a political component is always present in oil prices. Furthermore, at some moments of crisis it starts to feel like it is the politics that prevails in the pricing of energy resources”, he added.

Mr Putin also referred to a "distinct direct link" between physical oil markets and "the financial platforms where the trade is conducted", in explaining part of oil price changes.

Since June, the value of brent crude - the benchmark which Russia’s main export blend is priced off - has dropped from its $115 a barrel peak.

Energy and energy-related production account “a substantial share of total economic output, half of the federal budget revenues and almost two-thirds of export revenues”, according to Deutsche Bank.

“Thus, lower oil prices lead to a downgrade to Russia’s growth profile for the next several years,” according to an investment note produced by the bank.

The price of the Russian flagship Urals crude blend has fallen to trade just over $80 a barrel, well below the $114 level that the state would require to balance its budget.

Forecasts released by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) imply that things could improve in long-term - as it predicts that oil prices will average $177 per barrel by 2040.

The Russian President also declared that the planned Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) free-trade deal - between pacific countries including Japan and the US - was “just another US attempt to build an architecture of regional economic cooperation that the US would benefit from”.

“At the same time, I believe that the absence of two major regional players such as Russia and China in its composition will not promote the establishment of effective trade and economic cooperation”, he said.


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Everyman Standing Order 02: Everyman is Responsible for Energy and Security.
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America’s Secret Libya War

The U.S. military has spent about $1 billion on Libya’s revolution, and secretly helped NATO with everything from munitions to surveillance aircraft. John Barry provides an exclusive look at Obama’s emerging 'covert intervention' strategy.

John Barry
08.30.11

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/08/30/america-s-secret-libya-war-u-s-spent-1-billion-on-covert-ops-helping-nato.html

The U.S. military has spent about $1 billion so far and played a far larger role in Libya than it has acknowledged, quietly implementing an emerging "covert intervention" strategy that the Obama administration hopes will let America fight small wars with a barely detectable footprint.

Officially, President Obama handed the lead role of ousting Muammar Gaddafi to the European members of NATO. For this he was criticized by Washington war hawks who suggested that Europeans working with a ragtag team of Libyan rebels was a recipe for stalemate, not victory.

But behind the scenes, the U.S. military played an indispensable role in the Libya campaign, deploying far more forces than the administration chose to advertise. And at NATO headquarters outside Brussels, the U.S. was intimately involved in all decisions about how the Libyan rebels should be supported as they rolled up control of cities and oil refineries and marched toward the capital, Tripoli.

The Libya campaign was a unique international effort: 15 European nations working with the U.S. and three Arab nations. The air offensive was launched from 29 airbases in six European countries. But only six European nations joined with the U.S. and Canada to fly strikes against Gaddafi’s forces. The scale of the unpublicized U.S. role affirms hawks’ arguments: a divided NATO simply couldn’t have waged the war it did without extensive American help. What the hawks underestimated was the U.S. ability to operate without publicity—in military lingo, beneath the radar.

According to two senior NATO officials, one American and the other European, these were the critical U.S. contributions during the six-month military campaign:

• An international naval force gathered off Libya. To lower the U.S. profile, the administration elected not to send a supercarrier. Even so, the dozen U.S. warships on station were the biggest contingent in this armada. In the opening hours of the campaign, an American submarine, the USS Florida, launched 100 cruise missiles against Libyan air defenses, crucially opening an entry corridor for the airstrikes that followed.

• U.S. tanker aircraft refueled European aircraft on the great majority of missions against Gaddafi’s forces. The Europeans have tanker aircraft, but not enough to support a 24/7 air offensive averaging, by NATO count, around 100 missions a day, some 50 of them strike sorties. The U.S. flew 30 of the 40 tankers.

• When the Europeans ran low on precision-attack munitions, the U.S. quietly resupplied them. (That explains why European air forces flying F-16s—those of Norway, Denmark, Belgium—carried out a disproportionate share of the strikes in the early phase of the campaign. The U.S. had stocks of the munitions to resupply them. When Britain and France, which fly European-built strike aircraft, also ran short, they couldn’t use U.S.-made bombs until they had made hurried modifications to their aircraft.)

• To target Gaddafi’s military, NATO largely relied on U.S. JSTARS surveillance aircraft, which, flying offshore, could track the movements of rival forces. When more detailed targeting information was needed—as in the battles for Misrata and other towns defended by Gaddafi’s troops—the U.S. flew Predator drones to relay a block-by-block picture.

• U.S. Air Force targeting specialists were in NATO’s Naples operational headquarters throughout the campaign. They oversaw the preparing of “target folders” for the strikes in Tripoli against Gaddafi’s compound and the headquarters of his military and intelligence services. (Organizing precision strikes by high-speed jets is not a task for novices. The attack routes over Tripoli and the release times of bombs had to be precisely calibrated so munitions released even a second late by a strike aircraft would have the best chance of avoiding civilian homes.)

    What seems to be evolving is a new American way of war.

• U.S. AWACS aircraft, high over the Mediterranean, handled much of the battle-management task, acting as air-traffic controllers on most of the strike missions. Again, the Europeans have AWACS, but not enough crews to handle an all-hours campaign lasting months.

• Eavesdropping by U.S. intelligence—some by aircraft, some by a listening post quietly established just outside Libya—gave NATO unparalleled knowledge of what Gaddafi’s military planned.

• All this was crucial in supporting the European effort. But U.S. involvement went way beyond that. In all, the U.S. had flown by late August more than 5,300 missions, by Pentagon count. More than 1,200 of these were strike sorties against Libyan targets.

The administration largely stuck to Obama’s decision that the U.S. would not put boots on the ground in Libya (although the CIA did have agents inside Tripoli). British and French special forces were on the ground, training and organizing the insurgents—as were units from two Arab nations, Qatar and Jordan. But their communications relied on a satellite channel run by the U.S. And the U.S. also supplied other high-tech gear—NATO sources declined to describe it, but apparently it had never been given before, even to allied special forces.

• When a desperate Gaddafi began to launch Scud missiles into towns held by the opposition, a U.S. guided-missile destroyer offshore negated his offensive by shooting down the Scuds.

“President Obama may have taken the U.S. out of the direct combat role, but he certainly did not take American forces out of the front line,” Michael Clarke, director of the Royal United Services Institute think tank, wrote in a recent analysis. “The European allies were hardly ‘going it alone’ in this operation.”

With the Pentagon facing deep budget cuts, the Libyan campaign will likely provoke a debate in Washington. There is zero appetite to repeat the massive interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan, where the U.S. is still embroiled a decade later. The Libya campaign appears to offer an alternative. It hasn’t been cheap. The Pentagon estimates U.S. operations there cost $896 million through the end of July.

The good news is that the U.S. will be repaid for its assistance to the Europeans—everything from fuel for the aircraft to munitions and spare parts—which cost a further $222 million, the Pentagon estimates. And compared with Afghanistan, which is still costing the U.S. taxpayer roughly $10 billion a month, Gaddafi’s overthrow has been a bargain.

One senior NATO official pointed to the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan at the end of 2001 as a precursor of the Libya campaign. In Afghanistan, U.S. special forces riding with Northern Alliance troops downloaded on their laptops satellite pictures of Taliban deployments over the next hill, and used their satphones and hand-held GPS targeting devices to call in airstrikes. The Taliban was overthrown in 63 days.

“That was a classic example of the U.S. using its technological supremacy to support local forces,” the official said. “Now we have Libya as another example.”

The campaign in Yemen provides a third example. For more than two years, U.S. special forces have been training and working with Yemeni troops to combat, among other insurgent groups, Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). The U.S. campaign in Yemen has used conventional weaponry on occasion: sorties by Harriers and even some cruise-missile strikes. But the burden of much of the campaign has fallen to special-forces units, supported by Predators.

The ongoing struggle in Pakistan is arguably yet another case study in what seems to be evolving as a new American way of war.

Predator strikes against alleged Taliban and allied Afghan insurgent groups massing in Pakistan have preoccupied international attention. But senior NATO officers in Kabul whisper that again “beneath the radar,” CIA paramilitary operatives are inside Pakistan, leading groups of locally recruited frontier tribesmen. They apparently supply much of the targeting information for the Predators—especially against senior Taliban and al Qaeda operatives, who reportedly are the main targets of these CIA-led bands. Their mission may go beyond reconnaissance. According to one senior NATO officer in Kabul, some strikes credited to Predators actually result from raids by this covert force.

The killing 10 days ago of al Qaeda’s operations chief, Atiyah Abd al-Rahman, in the Pakistani frontier province of Waziristan, was the greatest single success in the campaign. U.S. officials attributed al-Rahman’s death to a Predator strike. But on the question of how he was identified and tracked, the officials were tight-lipped.



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Weekend Edition Oct 31-Nov 02, 2014

Kobani Kurds Expose the Hypocrisy of the Coalition Against ISIS
ISIS: the Useful Enemy
by ISMAEL HOSSEIN-ZADEH

http://wakeupfromyourslumber.com/isis-the-useful-enemy/

http://www.counterpunch.org/2014/10/31/isis-the-useful-enemy/

The dark force of ISIS is apparently an invincible and unstoppable war juggernaut that is mercilessly killing and conquering in pursuit of establishing an Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. In reality, however, it is not as out of control as it appears. It is, indeed, carefully controlled and managed by its creators and supporters, that is, by the United States and its allies in the regions—those who now pretend to have established a coalition to fight it! The U.S., Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and other allies in the region do not really need to fight ISIS to (allegedly) destroy it; all they need to do to extinguish its hellish flames is stop supplying fuel for its fire, that is, stop supplying it with funds, mercenaries, military training and armaments.

There are many ways to show the fact that, in subtle ways, ISIS benefactors control its operations and direct its activities in accordance with their own geopolitical interests. One way is to pay attention to its purported mission: to dismantle the corrupt and illegitimate regimes in Iraq and Syria and replace them with a “pure” Islamic state under the rule of a “pious caliphate.” Despite this professed mission to fight the dictatorial regimes that have tarnished Islam, however, ISIS does not question the most corrupt, dictatorial and illegitimate regimes in the region—such as the Saudi, Qatari, Kuwaiti and Jordanian regimes that fund and arm its operations.

Another way is to compare ISIS’s attack (in early August) on the Iraqi Kurds in Irbil with its current attack on the Syrian Kurds in Kobani. When Irbil came under attack by ISIS, the U.S. unleashed the full force of its air power in concert with the Kurdish peshmerga fighters to repel the attack.

By contrast, while the Kurdish city of Kobani in Northern Syria is being attacked by the disproportionately better armed forces of ISIS, and thousands of its besieged residents face certain mass killings if it falls, the forces of the “coalition to fight ISIS” are watching—in effect, playing a game of hide-and-seek, or perhaps trick-or-treat, with ISIS—as the outgunned and outmanned Kurdish forces are valiantly fighting to death against the attackers. Only occasionally the coalition forces carry out bombing missions that seem to be essentially theatrical, or just for the record.

So, why are the Kurds in Kobani treated differently than those in Irbil? I find Ajamu Baraka’s answer to this question quite insightful:

    “The reason why the Kurds of Kobani are to be sacrificed stems from the fact that they are the wrong kind of Kurds. Masoud Barzani and the bourgeois Kurds of the Kurdish Democratic Party (KDP) are the “good Kurds” and the predominant force among the Kurds of Iraq. Their control of almost 45% of Iraqi oil reserves and the booming business that they have been involved in with U.S. oil companies and Israel since their ‘liberation’ with the U.S. invasion makes them a valued asset for the U.S. The same goes for Turkey where despite the historic oppression of Kurds in Turkey, the government does a robust business with the Kurds of Iraq” (Source).

While the U.S., Turkey and their allies in the region do not view KDP as a threat to their geopolitical plans (at least for now), they do so when it comes to the “bad” Kurds in the self-governing area in Northern Syria, led by the Kurdish People’s Protection Unit (YPG). Contrary to KDP that tends to shun the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) in Turkey in order not to antagonize the Turks, the United States and their allies in the region, YPG welcomes support from PKK in its fight against ISIS.

Turkey’s overriding interest in Syria is not so much against ISIS as it is against the Syrian Kurds, as well as the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad; because the rabidly anti-Kurd regime in Ankara fears that the weakened regime of Assad may not be able to do away with the self-governing Kurds in Kobani and the surrounding Kurdish areas. The Turkish regime is concerned that if the Kobani Kurds succeed in fending off the ISIS forces, their success and their experience of self-government in the Kobani region, may serve as a tempting model of self-rule for the 15-million Kurds in Turkey. The Turks are also concerned that the success of the Syrian Kurds against ISIS would thwart their long-harbored ambitions to occupy and/or annex the oil-rich Kurdish region in Northern Syria—hence their insistence on a buffer or no-fly zone in that region.

This helps explain why the Turkish regime insists that the overthrow of the Assad regime must take precedence over the fight against ISIS. It also explains why it is feverishly trying to prevent the Kurdish volunteers to cross its border with Syria to help the besieged Kobani defenders against the brutal ISIS attack—in effect, helping ISIS against the Kurds. The inaction or half-hearted action of the United States in the face of the preventable slaughter of the Syrian Kurds, which makes it complicit in the carnage, can be explained by its political horse-trading with Turkey in exchange for the Turks’ collaboration with the pursuit of its imperialistic interests in the region.

The U.S. approach to ISIS would be better understood when it is viewed in the context of its overall objectives in the region—and beyond. That overriding objective, shared and reinforced by its client states, is to undermine or eliminate “the axis of resistance,” consisting of Iran, Syria, Hezbollah, Hamas and, to a lesser extent, Shia forces in Iraq, Yemen, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. Achievement of this goal would also be achievement of another, even broader, goal: undermining Russia’s influence and alliances in the region and, by extension, in other parts of the world—for example, its critically important role within both the Shanghai Cooperation Council (China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan) and the BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa).

To intervene in order to achieve these goals, the U.S. and its allies need pretexts and/or enemies—even if it means inventing or manufacturing such enemies. Without ISIS, resumption of U.S. military operations in Iraq and extension of those operations into Syria would have been difficult to justify to the American people. A year or so ago, the Obama administration’s drive to attack Syria was thwarted by the opposition from the American people and, therefore, the U.S. congress. The rise of ISIS quickly turned that opposition to support.

Viewed in this light, ISIS can be seen as essentially another (newly manufactured) instrument in the tool-box of U.S. foreign policy, which includes “global terrorism,” the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center, weapons of mass destruction, Iran’s nuclear technology, Al-Qaeda, and many other radical Islamic groupings—all by-products of, or blowbacks to, imperialistic U.S. foreign policies.

Ismael Hossein-zadeh is Professor Emeritus of Economics (Drake University). He is the author of Beyond Mainstream Explanations of the Financial Crisis (Routledge 2014), The Political Economy of U.S. Militarism (Palgrave-Macmillan 2007), and the Soviet Non-capitalist Development: The Case of Nasser’s Egypt (Praeger Publishers 1989). He is also a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion
Ensure that the future of journalism isn’t delivered by a drone.


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The Lie Machine

Paul Craig Roberts
October 11, 2014

I have come to the conclusion that the West is a vast lie machine for the secret agendas of vested interests. Consider, for example, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership and the Transpacific Trade and Investment Partnership.

These so-called “partnerships” are in fact vehicles by which US corporations make themselves immune to the sovereign laws of foreign countries in which they do business. A sovereign country that attempts to enforce its laws against an American corporation can be sued by the corporation for “restraint of trade.” For example, if Monsanto wants to sell GMO seeds in France or US corporations wish to sell genetically-modified foods in France, and France enforces its laws against GMOs, the Transatlantic Trade Partnership allows France to be sued in jurisdictions outside the courts of France for “restraint of trade.” In other words, preventing the entry into France of a prohibited product constitutes restraint of trade.

This is the reason that the US has insisted that the Transatlantic and Transpacific Partnerships be totally secretive and negotiated outside the democratic process. Not even the US Congress has been permitted knowledge of the negotiations.

Obviously, the Europeans and Asians who are agreeing with the terms of these “partnerships” are the bought-and-paid-for agents of the US corporations. If the partnerships go through, the only law in Europe and Asia will be US law. The European and Asian government officials who agree to the hegemony of US corporations over the laws of their countries will be so handsomely paid that they could enter the realm of the One Percent.

It is interesting to compare the BBC’s coverage (October 10) with that of RT (October 11). The BBC reports that the aim of the Transatlantic Partnership is to remove “barriers to bilateral commerce” and to stimulate more trade and investment, economic growth and employment. The BBC does not report that the removal of barriers includes barriers against GMO products.

Everyone knows that the European Commission is corrupt. Who would be surprised if its members hope to be enriched by the American corporations? Little wonder the European Commission declared that concerns that the Transatlantic partnership would impact the sovereignty of countries is misplaced.  http://www.bbc.com/news/business-29572475

RT, which is restrained in reporting truth because it operates inside the US, still manages to come to the point in its headline: “No TTIP: Mass protests slam US-EU trade deal as ‘Corporate power grab’.”

All over Europe people are in the streets in mass rallies against secret agreements by their corrupt governments for Washington to take over their lives and businesses. RT reports that “social networks have been mobilized for a mass campaign that has been calling on Europeans and Americans to take action against ‘the biggest corporate power grab in a decade’.”

RT quotes a leader of the demonstration in Berlin who says the secret agreements “give corporations more rights they’ve ever had in history.” As we all know, corporations already have too many rights.

“Protests are planned in 22 countries across Europe–marches, rallies and other public events–in over 1,000 locations in UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Greece, Netherlands, Poland, The Czech Republic and Scandinavian countries.”

Did you hear about this latest American corporate power grab from Fox “News,” CNN, New York Times, London Times, ABC? Of course not. Did you hear about the massive protests against it? Of course not. You only hear what the interest groups permit you to hear.

RT reports that the main aim of the international protests is “to reclaim democracy” and to put an end to the secret deals that are destroying life for everyone but the American corporations, organizations now regarded worldwide as the epitome of evil.
http://rt.com/news/195144-europe-protests-stop-ttip/

These phony “trade agreements” are advocated as “free trade removal of tariffs,” but what they remove are the sovereignties of countries. America is already ruled by corporations. If these faux “trade agreements” go through, Europe and Asia will also be ruled by American corporations.



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“The CIA owns everyone of any significance in the major media.”

October 16, 2014

http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2014/10/16/cia-owns-everyone-significance-major-media/

As a former member of the major media prior to its concentration in few hands by the Clinton regime, I have reported on many occasions that the Western media is a Ministry of Propaganda for Washington. In the article below one of the propagandists confesses. PCR

Published on Russia Insider News:  http://russia-insider.com/en/print/531

“The CIA owns everyone of any significance in the major media.” — former CIA Director William Colby

Our Exclusive Interview with German Editor Turned CIA Whistleblower

Fascinating details emerge. Leading US-funded think-tanks and German secret service are accessories. Attempted suppression by legal threats. Blackout in German media.

Exclusively for RI, Dutch journalist Eric van de Beek interviews the senior German editor who is causing a sensation with his allegations that the CIA pays German media professionals to spin stories to follow US government goals.  

We wrote about this two weeks ago, and the article shot up in views, becoming one of the most read articles on our site.

Udo Ulfkotte reveals in his bestseller Bought Journalists, how he was “taught to lie, to betray and not to tell the truth to the public.”

The former editor of Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, which is one of Germany’s largest newspapers, was secretly on the payroll of the CIA and German secret service, spinning the news in a way that was positive for the United States and bad for its opponents.
In his latest interview, Ulfkotte alleges that some media are nothing more than propaganda outlets of political parties, secret services, international think tanks and high finance entities.

Repenting for collaborating with various agencies and organisations to manipulate the news, Ulkotte laments, “I’m ashamed I was part of it. Unfortunately I cannot reverse this.”

Some highlights from the interview:

“I ended up publishing articles under my own name written by agents of the CIA and other intelligence services, especially the German secret service.”
“Most journalists from respected and big media organisations are closely connected to the German Marshall Fund, the Atlantik-Brücke or other so-called transatlantic organisations…once you’re connected, you make friends with selected Americans. You think they are your friends and you start cooperating. They work on your ego, make you feel like you’re important. And one day one of them will ask you ‘Will you do me this favor’…”
“When I told the Frankfurter Allgemeine that I would publish the book, their lawyers sent me a letter threatening with all legal consequences if I would publish any names or secrets – but I don’t mind.”
“[The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung] hasn’t sued me. They know that I have evidence on everything.”
“No German mainstream journalist is allowed to report about [my] book. Otherwise he or she will be sacked. So we have a bestseller now that no German journalist is allowed to write or talk about.”

“Bought journalists”, who are they?

“We’re talking about puppets on a string, journalists who write or say whatever their masters tell them to say or write. If you see how the mainstream media is reporting about the Ukraine conflict and if you know what’s really going on, you get the picture. The masters in the background are pushing for war with Russia and western journalists are putting on their helmets.”  
  
And you were one of them, and now you are the first to blow the whistle.

“I’m ashamed I was part of it. Unfortunately I cannot reverse this. Although my superiors at the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung approved of what I did, I’m still to blame. But yes, to my knowledge I am the first to accuse myself and to prove many others are to blame.”

How did you become a bought journalist?

“It started very soon after I started working at the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. I learned to regard luxury invitations as quite acceptable and to write positive articles in return. Later on I was invited by the German Marshall Fund of The United States to travel the United States. They paid for all my expenses and put me in contact with Americans they’d like me to meet. In fact, most journalists from respected and big media organisations are closely connected to the German Marshall Fund, the Atlantik-Brücke or other so-called transatlantic organisations. Many of them are even members or ‘fellows’. I am a fellow of the German Marshall Fund. The thing is, once you’re connected, you make friends with selected Americans. You think they are your friends and you start cooperating. They work on your ego, make you feel like you’re important. And one day one of them will ask you ‘Will you do me this favor’ and then another will ask you ‘Will you do me that favor’. Bye and bye you get completely brainwashed. I ended up publishing articles under my own name written by agents of the CIA and other intelligence services, especially the Bundesnachrichtendienst.”

You said your superiors approved of that?

“They did. From my private point of view, in retrospective, they even sent me to spy. For instance in 1988 they put me on a plane to Iraq, where I traveled to the border with Iran. In those days Saddam Hussein was still seen as a good guy, a close ally to the US. The Americans supported him in his war against Iran. About 35 kilometers from the border, in an Iranian place called Zubaidad, I witnessed the Iraqis killing and injuring thousands of Iranians by throwing poison gas at them. I did exactly what my superiors had asked me to do. I made photo’s of the gas attacks. Back in Frankfurt it appeared my superiors didn’t show much interest in the atrocities I had witnessed. They allowed me to write an article about it, but they severely limited the size of it as if it wasn’t of much importance. At the same time they asked me to hand over the photo’s that I had made to the German association of chemical companies in Frankfurt, Verband der Chemischen Industrie. This poison gas that had killed so many Iranians was made in Germany.”

What’s your opinion on press trips? Journalists usually excuse themselves by saying they are perfectly able to follow their own judgment and that they don’t commit themselves to anything or anybody.

“I’ve been on a thousand press trips and never reported bad about those who paid all the expenses. You don’t bite the hand that feeds you. That’s where corruption starts. And that’s the reason why magazines like Der Spiegel don’t allow their journalists to accept invitations to press trips unless they pay for their own expenses.”

The consequences of becoming a whistleblower can be serious. Do you have any indications people tried to prevent the publication of your book?

“When I told the Frankfurter Allgemeine that I would publish the book, their lawyers sent me a letter threatening with all legal consequences if I would publish any names or secrets – but I don’t mind. You see, I don’t have children to take care of. And you must know I was severely injured during the gas attack I witnessed in Iran in 1988. I’m the sole German survivor from a German poison gas attack. I’m still suffering from this. I’ve had three heart attacks. I don’t expect to live for more than a few years.”

In your book you mention many names of bought journalists. How are they doing now? Are they being sacked? Are they trying to clear their names?

“No German mainstream journalist is allowed to report about the book. Otherwise he or she will be sacked. So we have a bestseller now that no German journalist is allowed to write or talk about. More shocking: We have respected journalists who seem to have gone deep sea diving for a long time. It’s an Interesting situation. I expected and hoped that they would sue me and bring me to court. But they have no idea what to do. The respected Frankfurter Allgemeine just announced they will fire 200 employees, because they’re losing subscribers very rapidly and in high numbers. But they don’t sue me. They know that I have evidence on everything.”


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Vladimir Putin Is The Leader Of the Moral World

Paul Craig Roberts
October 25, 2014

Dear Friends,

Vladimir Putin’s remarks at the 11th meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club are worth more than a link in my latest column. These are the remarks of a humanitarian political leader, the like of which the world has not seen in my lifetime. Compare Putin to the corrupt war criminal in the White House or to his puppets in office in Germany, UK, France, Japan, Canada, Australia, and you will see the difference between a criminal clique and a leader striving for a humane and livable world in which the interests of all peoples are respected.

In a sane Western society, Putin’s statements would have been reproduced in full and discussions organized with remarks from experts such as Stephen F. Cohen. Choruses of approval would have been heard on television and read in the print media. But, of course, nothing like this is possible in a country whose rulers claim that it is the “exceptional” and “indispensable” country with an extra-legal right to hegemony over the world. As far as Washington and its prostitute media, named “presstitutes” by the trends specialist Gerald Celente, are concerned, no country counts except Washington. “You are with us or against us,” which means “you are our vassals or our enemies.” This means that Washington has declared Russia, China, India, Brazil and other parts of South America, Iran, and South Africa to be enemies.

This is a big chunk of the world for a bankrupt country, hated by its vassal populations and many of its own subjects, that has not won a war since it defeated tiny Japan in 1945 by using nuclear weapons, the only use of such terrible weapons in world history.

As an American, try to image any known American politician, or for that matter any professor at Harvard, Princeton, Yale, or Stanford capable of giving an address to an educated discussion group of the quality of Putin’s remarks. Try to find any American politician capable of responding precisely and directly to questions instead of employing evasion.

No one can read Putin’s remarks without concluding that Putin is the leader of the world.

In my opinion, Putin is such a towering figure that Washington has him marked for assassination. The CIA will use one of the Muslim terrorists that the CIA supports inside Russia. Unlike an American president, who dares not move among the people openly, Putin is not kept remote from the people. Putin is at ease with the Russian people and mingles among them. This makes him an easy target for the CIA to use a Chechnya terrorist, a Jihadist suicide bomber, or the traditional “lone nut” to assassinate Putin.

The immoral, wicked, and declining West is incapable of producing leadership of Putin’s quality. Having defamed Putin, assassinating him will cause little comment in the Western media.

Here are Putin’s remarkable remarks:

http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2014/10/25/vladimir-putin-leader-moral-world-paul-craig-roberts/


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Meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club
24 October 2014, Sochi

Vladimir Putin took part in the final plenary meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club’s XI session. The meeting’s theme is The World Order: New Rules or a Game without Rules.
This year, 108 experts, historians and political analysts from 25 countries, including 62 foreign participants, took part in the club’s work.

The plenary meeting summed up the club’s work over the previous three days, which concentrated on analysing the factors eroding the current system of institutions and norms of international law.

PRESIDENT OF RUSSIA VLADIMIR PUTIN: Colleagues, ladies and gentlemen, friends, it is a pleasure to welcome you to the XI meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club.

It was mentioned already that the club has new co-organisers this year. They include Russian non-governmental organisations, expert groups and leading universities. The idea was also raised of broadening the discussions to include not just issues related to Russia itself but also global politics and the economy.

n organisation and content will bolster the club’s influence as a leading discussion and expert forum. At the same time, I hope the ‘Valdai spirit’ will remain – this free and open atmosphere and chance to express all manner of very different and frank opinions.   

Let me say in this respect that I will also not let you down and will speak directly and frankly. Some of what I say might seem a bit too harsh, but if we do not speak directly and honestly about what we really think, then there is little point in even meeting in this way. It would be better in that case just to keep to diplomatic get-togethers, where no one says anything of real sense and, recalling the words of one famous diplomat, you realise that diplomats have tongues so as not to speak the truth.
 
We get together for other reasons. We get together so as to talk frankly with each other. We need to be direct and blunt today not so as to trade barbs, but so as to attempt to get to the bottom of what is actually happening in the world, try to understand why the world is becoming less safe and more unpredictable, and why the risks are increasing everywhere around us.
Today’s discussion took place under the theme: New Rules or a Game without Rules. I think that this formula accurately describes the historic turning point we have reached today and the choice we all face. There is nothing new of course in the idea that the world is changing very fast. I know this is something you have spoken about at the discussions today. It is certainly hard not to notice the dramatic transformations in global politics and the economy, public life, and in industry, information and social technologies.

Let me ask you right now to forgive me if I end up repeating what some of the discussion’s participants have already said. It’s practically impossible to avoid. You have already held detailed discussions, but I will set out my point of view. It will coincide with other participants’ views on some points and differ on others.

As we analyse today’s situation, let us not forget history’s lessons. First of all, changes in the world order – and what we are seeing today are events on this scale – have usually been accompanied by if not global war and conflict, then by chains of intensive local-level conflicts. Second, global politics is above all about economic leadership, issues of war and peace, and the humanitarian dimension, including human rights.

The world is full of contradictions today. We need to be frank in asking each other if we have a reliable safety net in place. Sadly, there is no guarantee and no certainty that the current system of global and regional security is able to protect us from upheavals. This system has become seriously weakened, fragmented and deformed. The international and regional political, economic, and cultural cooperation organisations are also going through difficult times.

Yes, many of the mechanisms we have for ensuring the world order were created quite a long time ago now, including and above all in the period immediately following World War II. Let me stress that the solidity of the system created back then rested not only on the balance of power and the rights of the victor countries, but on the fact that this system’s ‘founding fathers’ had respect for each other, did not try to put the squeeze on others, but attempted to reach agreements.

The main thing is that this system needs to develop, and despite its various shortcomings, needs to at least be capable of keeping the world’s current problems within certain limits and regulating the intensity of the natural competition between countries.

It is my conviction that we could not take this mechanism of checks and balances that we built over the last decades, sometimes with such effort and difficulty, and simply tear it apart without building anything in its place. Otherwise we would be left with no instruments other than brute force.

What we needed to do was to carry out a rational reconstruction and adapt it the new realities in the system of international relations.

But the United States, having declared itself the winner of the Cold War, saw no need for this. Instead of establishing a new balance of power, essential for maintaining order and stability, they took steps that threw the system into sharp and deep imbalance. 

The Cold War ended, but it did not end with the signing of a peace treaty with clear and transparent agreements on respecting existing rules or creating new rules and standards. This created the impression that the so-called ‘victors’ in the Cold War had decided to pressure events and reshape the world to suit their own needs and interests. If the existing system of international relations, international law and the checks and balances in place got in the way of these aims, this system was declared worthless, outdated and in need of immediate demolition.
 
Pardon the analogy, but this is the way nouveaux riches behave when they suddenly end up with a great fortune, in this case, in the shape of world leadership and domination. Instead of managing their wealth wisely, for their own benefit too of course, I think they have committed many follies.   

We have entered a period of differing interpretations and deliberate silences in world politics. International law has been forced to retreat over and over by the onslaught of legal nihilism. Objectivity and justice have been sacrificed on the altar of political expediency. Arbitrary interpretations and biased assessments have replaced legal norms. At the same time, total control of the global mass media has made it possible when desired to portray white as black and black as white.

In a situation where you had domination by one country and its allies, or its satellites rather, the search for global solutions often turned into an attempt to impose their own universal recipes. This group’s ambitions grew so big that they started presenting the policies they put together in their corridors of power as the view of the entire international community. But this is not the case.

The very notion of ‘national sovereignty’ became a relative value for most countries. In essence, what was being proposed was the formula: the greater the loyalty towards the world’s sole power centre, the greater this or that ruling regime’s legitimacy.

We will have a free discussion afterwards and I will be happy to answer your questions and would also like to use my right to ask you questions. Let someone try to disprove the arguments that I just set out during the upcoming discussion.

The measures taken against those who refuse to submit are well-known and have been tried and tested many times. They include use of force, economic and propaganda pressure, meddling in domestic affairs, and appeals to a kind of ‘supra-legal’ legitimacy when they need to justify illegal intervention in this or that conflict or toppling inconvenient regimes. Of late, we have increasing evidence too that outright blackmail has been used with regard to a number of leaders. It is not for nothing that ‘big brother’ is spending billions of dollars on keeping the whole world, including its own closest allies, under surveillance.

Let’s ask ourselves, how comfortable are we with this, how safe are we, how happy living in this world, and how fair and rational has it become? Maybe, we have no real reasons to worry, argue and ask awkward questions? Maybe the United States’ exceptional position and the way they are carrying out their leadership really is a blessing for us all, and their meddling in events all around the world is bringing peace, prosperity, progress, growth and democracy, and we should maybe just relax and enjoy it all?   

Let me say that this is not the case, absolutely not the case.

A unilateral diktat and imposing one’s own models produces the opposite result. Instead of settling conflicts it leads to their escalation, instead of sovereign and stable states we see the growing spread of chaos, and instead of democracy there is support for a very dubious public ranging from open neo-fascists to Islamic radicals. 

Why do they support such people? They do this because they decide to use them as instruments along the way in achieving their goals but then burn their fingers and recoil. I never cease to be amazed by the way that our partners just keep stepping on the same rake, as we say here in Russia, that is to say, make the same mistake over and over.

They once sponsored Islamic extremist movements to fight the Soviet Union. Those groups got their battle experience in Afghanistan and later gave birth to the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. The West if not supported, at least closed its eyes, and, I would say, gave information, political and financial support to international terrorists’ invasion of Russia (we have not forgotten this) and the Central Asian region’s countries. Only after horrific terrorist attacks were committed on US soil itself did the United States wake up to the common threat of terrorism. Let me remind you that we were the first country to support the American people back then, the first to react as friends and partners to the terrible tragedy of September 11.

During my conversations with American and European leaders, I always spoke of the need to fight terrorism together, as a challenge on a global scale. We cannot resign ourselves to and accept this threat, cannot cut it into separate pieces using double standards. Our partners expressed agreement, but a little time passed and we ended up back where we started. First there was the military operation in Iraq, then in Libya, which got pushed to the brink of falling apart. Why was Libya pushed into this situation? Today it is a country in danger of breaking apart and has become a training ground for terrorists.

Only the current Egyptian leadership’s determination and wisdom saved this key Arab country from chaos and having extremists run rampant. In Syria, as in the past, the United States and its allies started directly financing and arming rebels and allowing them to fill their ranks with mercenaries from various countries. Let me ask where do these rebels get their money, arms and military specialists? Where does all this come from? How did the notorious ISIL manage to become such a powerful group, essentially a real armed force? 
 
As for financing sources, today, the money is coming not just from drugs, production of which has increased not just by a few percentage points but many-fold, since the international coalition forces have been present in Afghanistan. You are aware of this. The terrorists are getting money from selling oil too. Oil is produced in territory controlled by the terrorists, who sell it at dumping prices, produce it and transport it. But someone buys this oil, resells it, and makes a profit from it, not thinking about the fact that they are thus financing terrorists who could come sooner or later to their own soil and sow destruction in their own countries.

Where do they get new recruits? In Iraq, after Saddam Hussein was toppled, the state’s institutions, including the army, were left in ruins. We said back then, be very, very careful. You are driving people out into the street, and what will they do there? Don’t forget (rightfully or not) that they were in the leadership of a large regional power, and what are you now turning them into?

What was the result? Tens of thousands of soldiers, officers and former Baath Party activists were turned out into the streets and today have joined the rebels’ ranks. Perhaps this is what explains why the Islamic State group has turned out so effective? In military terms, it is acting very effectively and has some very professional people. Russia warned repeatedly about the dangers of unilateral military actions, intervening in sovereign states’ affairs, and flirting with extremists and radicals. We insisted on having the groups fighting the central Syrian government, above all the Islamic State, included on the lists of terrorist organisations. But did we see any results? We appealed in vain.

We sometimes get the impression that our colleagues and friends are constantly fighting the consequences of their own policies, throw all their effort into addressing the risks they themselves have created, and pay an ever-greater price. 

Colleagues, this period of unipolar domination has convincingly demonstrated that having only one power centre does not make global processes more manageable. On the contrary, this kind of unstable construction has shown its inability to fight the real threats such as regional conflicts, terrorism, drug trafficking, religious fanaticism, chauvinism and neo-Nazism. At the same time, it has opened the road wide for inflated national pride, manipulating public opinion and letting the strong bully and suppress the weak.

Essentially, the unipolar world is simply a means of justifying dictatorship over people and countries. The unipolar world turned out too uncomfortable, heavy and unmanageable a burden even for the self-proclaimed leader. Comments along this line were made here just before and I fully agree with this. This is why we see attempts at this new historic stage to recreate a semblance of a quasi-bipolar world as a convenient model for perpetuating American leadership. It does not matter who takes the place of the centre of evil in American propaganda, the USSR’s old place as the main adversary. It could be Iran, as a country seeking to acquire nuclear technology, China, as the world’s biggest economy, or Russia, as a nuclear superpower.

Today, we are seeing new efforts to fragment the world, draw new dividing lines, put together coalitions not built for something but directed against someone, anyone, create the image of an enemy as was the case during the Cold War years, and obtain the right to this leadership, or diktat if you wish. The situation was presented this way during the Cold War. We all understand this and know this. The United States always told its allies: “We have a common enemy, a terrible foe, the centre of evil, and we are defending you, our allies, from this foe, and so we have the right to order you around, force you to sacrifice your political and economic interests and pay your share of the costs for this collective defence, but we will be the ones in charge of it all of course.” In short, we see today attempts in a new and changing world to reproduce the familiar models of global management, and all this so as to guarantee their [the US’] exceptional position and reap political and economic dividends.

But these attempts are increasingly divorced from reality and are in contradiction with the world’s diversity. Steps of this kind inevitably create confrontation and countermeasures and have the opposite effect to the hoped-for goals. We see what happens when politics rashly starts meddling in the economy and the logic of rational decisions gives way to the logic of confrontation that only hurt one’s own economic positions and interests, including national business interests.

Joint economic projects and mutual investment objectively bring countries closer together and help to smooth out current problems in relations between states. But today, the global business community faces unprecedented pressure from Western governments. What business, economic expediency and pragmatism can we speak of when we hear slogans such as “the homeland is in danger”, “the free world is under threat”, and “democracy is in jeopardy”? And so everyone needs to mobilise. That is what a real mobilisation policy looks like.

Sanctions are already undermining the foundations of world trade, the WTO rules and the principle of inviolability of private property. They are dealing a blow to liberal model of globalisation based on markets, freedom and competition, which, let me note, is a model that has primarily benefited precisely the Western countries. And now they risk losing trust as the leaders of globalisation. We have to ask ourselves, why was this necessary? After all, the United States’ prosperity rests in large part on the trust of investors and foreign holders of dollars and US securities. This trust is clearly being undermined and signs of disappointment in the fruits of globalisation are visible now in many countries. 
 
The well-known Cyprus precedent and the politically motivated sanctions have only strengthened the trend towards seeking to bolster economic and financial sovereignty and countries’ or their regional groups’ desire to find ways of protecting themselves from the risks of outside pressure. We already see that more and more countries are looking for ways to become less dependent on the dollar and are setting up alternative financial and payments systems and reserve currencies. I think that our American friends are quite simply cutting the branch they are sitting on. You cannot mix politics and the economy, but this is what is happening now. I have always thought and still think today that politically motivated sanctions were a mistake that will harm everyone, but I am sure that we will come back to this subject later.

We know how these decisions were taken and who was applying the pressure. But let me stress that Russia is not going to get all worked up, get offended or come begging at anyone’s door. Russia is a self-sufficient country. We will work within the foreign economic environment that has taken shape, develop domestic production and technology and act more decisively to carry out transformation. Pressure from outside, as has been the case on past occasions, will only consolidate our society, keep us alert and make us concentrate on our main development goals.

Of course the sanctions are a hindrance. They are trying to hurt us through these sanctions, block our development and push us into political, economic and cultural isolation, force us into backwardness in other words. But let me say yet again that the world is a very different place today. We have no intention of shutting ourselves off from anyone and choosing some kind of closed development road, trying to live in autarky. We are always open to dialogue, including on normalising our economic and political relations. We are counting here on the pragmatic approach and position of business communities in the leading countries. 

Some are saying today that Russia is supposedly turning its back on Europe – such words were probably spoken already here too during the discussions – and is looking for new business partners, above all in Asia. Let me say that this is absolutely not the case. Our active policy in the Asian-Pacific region began not just yesterday and not in response to sanctions, but is a policy that we have been following for a good many years now. Like many other countries, including Western countries, we saw that Asia is playing an ever greater role in the world, in the economy and in politics, and there is simply no way we can afford to overlook these developments.

Let me say again that everyone is doing this, and we will do so to, all the more so as a large part of our country is geographically in Asia. Why should we not make use of our competitive advantages in this area? It would be extremely shortsighted not to do so.

Developing economic ties with these countries and carrying out joint integration projects also creates big incentives for our domestic development. Today’s demographic, economic and cultural trends all suggest that dependence on a sole superpower will objectively decrease. This is something that European and American experts have been talking and writing about too.
Perhaps developments in global politics will mirror the developments we are seeing in the global economy, namely, intensive competition for specific niches and frequent change of leaders in specific areas. This is entirely possible.

There is no doubt that humanitarian factors such as education, science, healthcare and culture are playing a greater role in global competition. This also has a big impact on international relations, including because this ‘soft power’ resource will depend to a great extent on real achievements in developing human capital rather than on sophisticated propaganda tricks.
At the same time, the formation of a so-called polycentric world (I would also like to draw attention to this, colleagues) in and of itself does not improve stability; in fact, it is more likely to be the opposite. The goal of reaching global equilibrium is turning into a fairly difficult puzzle, an equation with many unknowns.

So, what is in store for us if we choose not to live by the rules – even if they may be strict and inconvenient – but rather live without any rules at all? And that scenario is entirely possible; we cannot rule it out, given the tensions in the global situation. Many predictions can already be made, taking into account current trends, and unfortunately, they are not optimistic. If we do not create a clear system of mutual commitments and agreements, if we do not build the mechanisms for managing and resolving crisis situations, the symptoms of global anarchy will inevitably grow.
Today, we already see a sharp increase in the likelihood of a whole set of violent conflicts with either direct or indirect participation by the world’s major powers. And the risk factors include not just traditional multinational conflicts, but also the internal instability in separate states, especially when we talk about nations located at the intersections of major states’ geopolitical interests, or on the border of cultural, historical, and economic civilizational continents.

Ukraine, which I’m sure was discussed at length and which we will discuss some more, is one of the example of such sorts of conflicts that affect international power balance, and I think it will certainly not be the last. From here emanates the next real threat of destroying the current system of arms control agreements. And this dangerous process was launched by the United States of America when it unilaterally withdrew from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty in 2002, and then set about and continues today to actively pursue the creation of its global missile defence system.

Colleagues, friends, I want to point out that we did not start this. Once again, we are sliding into the times when, instead of the balance of interests and mutual guarantees, it is fear and the balance of mutual destruction that prevent nations from engaging in direct conflict. In absence of legal and political instruments, arms are once again becoming the focal point of the global agenda; they are used wherever and however, without any UN Security Council sanctions. And if the Security Council refuses to produce such decisions, then it is immediately declared to be an outdated and ineffective instrument.

Many states do not see any other ways of ensuring their sovereignty but to obtain their own bombs. This is extremely dangerous. We insist on continuing talks; we are not only in favour of talks, but insist on continuing talks to reduce nuclear arsenals. The less nuclear weapons we have in the world, the better. And we are ready for the most serious, concrete discussions on nuclear disarmament – but only serious discussions without any double standards.

What do I mean? Today, many types of high-precision weaponry are already close to mass-destruction weapons in terms of their capabilities, and in the event of full renunciation of nuclear weapons or radical reduction of nuclear potential, nations that are leaders in creating and producing high-precision systems will have a clear military advantage. Strategic parity will be disrupted, and this is likely to bring destabilization. The use of a so-called first global pre-emptive strike may become tempting. In short, the risks do not decrease, but intensify.

The next obvious threat is the further escalation of ethnic, religious, and social conflicts. Such conflicts are dangerous not only as such, but also because they create zones of anarchy, lawlessness, and chaos around them, places that are comfortable for terrorists and criminals, where piracy, human trafficking, and drug trafficking flourish.

Incidentally, at the time, our colleagues tried to somehow manage these processes, use regional conflicts and design ‘colour revolutions’ to suit their interests, but the genie escaped the bottle. It looks like the controlled chaos theory fathers themselves do not know what to do with it; there is disarray in their ranks.

We closely follow the discussions by both the ruling elite and the expert community. It is enough to look at the headlines of the Western press over the last year. The same people are called fighters for democracy, and then Islamists; first they write about revolutions and then call them riots and upheavals. The result is obvious: the further expansion of global chaos.

Colleagues, given the global situation, it is time to start agreeing on fundamental things. This is incredibly important and necessary; this is much better than going back to our own corners. The more we all face common problems, the more we find ourselves in the same boat, so to speak. And the logical way out is in cooperation between nations, societies, in finding collective answers to increasing challenges, and in joint risk management. Granted, some of our partners, for some reason, remember this only when it suits their interests.

Practical experience shows that joint answers to challenges are not always a panacea; and we need to understand this. Moreover, in most cases, they are hard to reach; it is not easy to overcome the differences in national interests, the subjectivity of different approaches, particularly when it comes to nations with different cultural and historical traditions. But nevertheless, we have examples when, having common goals and acting based on the same criteria, together we achieved real success.

Let me remind you about solving the problem of chemical weapons in Syria, and the substantive dialogue on the Iranian nuclear programme, as well as our work on North Korean issues, which also has some positive results. Why can’t we use this experience in the future to solve local and global challenges?

What could be the legal, political, and economic basis for a new world order that would allow for stability and security, while encouraging healthy competition, not allowing the formation of new monopolies that hinder development? It is unlikely that someone could provide absolutely exhaustive, ready-made solutions right now. We will need extensive work with participation by a wide range of governments, global businesses, civil society, and such expert platforms as ours.

However, it is obvious that success and real results are only possible if key participants in international affairs can agree on harmonising basic interests, on reasonable self-restraint, and set the example of positive and responsible leadership. We must clearly identify where unilateral actions end and we need to apply multilateral mechanisms, and as part of improving the effectiveness of international law, we must resolve the dilemma between the actions by international community to ensure security and human rights and the principle of national sovereignty and non-interference in the internal affairs of any state.

Those very collisions increasingly lead to arbitrary external interference in complex internal processes, and time and again, they provoke dangerous conflicts between leading global players. The issue of maintaining sovereignty becomes almost paramount in maintaining and strengthening global stability.

Clearly, discussing the criteria for the use of external force is extremely difficult; it is practically impossible to separate it from the interests of particular nations. However, it is far more dangerous when there are no agreements that are clear to everyone, when no clear conditions are set for necessary and legal interference.

I will add that international relations must be based on international law, which itself should rest on moral principles such as justice, equality and truth. Perhaps most important is respect for one’s partners and their interests. This is an obvious formula, but simply following it could radically change the global situation.

I am certain that if there is a will, we can restore the effectiveness of the international and regional institutions system. We do not even need to build anything anew, from the scratch; this is not a “greenfield,” especially since the institutions created after World War II are quite universal and can be given modern substance, adequate to manage the current situation.

This is true of improving the work of the UN, whose central role is irreplaceable, as well as the OSCE, which, over the course of 40 years, has proven to be a necessary mechanism for ensuring security and cooperation in the Euro-Atlantic region. I must say that even now, in trying to resolve the crisis in southeast Ukraine, the OSCE is playing a very positive role.

In light of the fundamental changes in the international environment, the increase in uncontrollability and various threats, we need a new global consensus of responsible forces. It’s not about some local deals or a division of spheres of influence in the spirit of classic diplomacy, or somebody’s complete global domination. I think that we need a new version of interdependence. We should not be afraid of it. On the contrary, this is a good instrument for harmonising positions.

This is particularly relevant given the strengthening and growth of certain regions on the planet, which process objectively requires institutionalisation of such new poles, creating powerful regional organisations and developing rules for their interaction. Cooperation between these centres would seriously add to the stability of global security, policy and economy.  But in order to establish such a dialogue, we need to proceed from the assumption that all regional centres and integration projects forming around them need to have equal rights to development, so that they can complement each other and nobody can force them into conflict or opposition artificially. Such destructive actions would break down ties between states, and the states themselves would be subjected to extreme hardship, or perhaps even total destruction.

I would like to remind you of the last year’s events. We have told our American and European partners that hasty backstage decisions, for example, on Ukraine’s association with the EU, are fraught with serious risks to the economy. We didn’t even say anything about politics; we spoke only about the economy, saying that such steps, made without any prior arrangements, touch on the interests of many other nations, including Russia as Ukraine’s main trade partner, and that a wide discussion of the issues is necessary. Incidentally, in this regard, I will remind you that, for example, the talks on Russia’s accession to the WTO lasted 19 years. This was very difficult work, and a certain consensus was reached.

Why am I bringing this up? Because in implementing Ukraine’s association project, our partners would come to us with their goods and services through the back gate, so to speak, and we did not agree to this, nobody asked us about this. We had discussions on all topics related to Ukraine’s association with the EU, persistent discussions, but I want to stress that this was done in an entirely civilised manner, indicating possible problems, showing the obvious reasoning and arguments. Nobody wanted to listen to us and nobody wanted to talk. They simply told us: this is none of your business, point, end of discussion. Instead of a comprehensive but – I stress – civilised dialogue, it all came down to a government overthrow; they plunged the country into chaos, into economic and social collapse, into a civil war with enormous casualties.

Why? When I ask my colleagues why, they no longer have an answer; nobody says anything. That’s it. Everyone’s at a loss, saying it just turned out that way. Those actions should not have been encouraged – it wouldn’t have worked. After all (I already spoke about this), former Ukrainian President Yanukovych signed everything, agreed with everything. Why do it? What was the point? What is this, a civilised way of solving problems? Apparently, those who constantly throw together new ‘colour revolutions’ consider themselves ‘brilliant artists’ and simply cannot stop.

I am certain that the work of integrated associations, the cooperation of regional structures, should be built on a transparent, clear basis; the Eurasian Economic Union’s formation process is a good example of such transparency. The states that are parties to this project informed their partners of their plans in advance, specifying the parameters of our association, the principles of its work, which fully correspond with the World Trade Organisation rules.

I will add that we would also have welcomed the start of a concrete dialogue between the Eurasian and European Union. Incidentally, they have almost completely refused us this as well, and it is also unclear why – what is so scary about it?

And, of course, with such joint work, we would think that we need to engage in dialogue (I spoke about this many times and heard agreement from many of our western partners, at least in Europe) on the need to create a common space for economic and humanitarian cooperation stretching all the way from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean.

Colleagues, Russia made its choice. Our priorities are further improving our democratic and open economy institutions, accelerated internal development, taking into account all the positive modern trends in the world, and consolidating society based on traditional values and patriotism.

We have an integration-oriented, positive, peaceful agenda; we are working actively with our colleagues in the Eurasian Economic Union, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, BRICS and other partners. This agenda is aimed at developing ties between governments, not dissociating. We are not planning to cobble together any blocs or get involved in an exchange of blows.

The allegations and statements that Russia is trying to establish some sort of empire, encroaching on the sovereignty of its neighbours, are groundless. Russia does not need any kind of special, exclusive place in the world – I want to emphasise this. While respecting the interests of others, we simply want for our own interests to be taken into account and for our position to be respected.
We are well aware that the world has entered an era of changes and global transformations, when we all need a particular degree of caution, the ability to avoid thoughtless steps. In the years after the Cold War, participants in global politics lost these qualities somewhat. Now, we need to remember them. Otherwise, hopes for a peaceful, stable development will be a dangerous illusion, while today’s turmoil will simply serve as a prelude to the collapse of world order.

Yes, of course, I have already said that building a more stable world order is a difficult task. We are talking about long and hard work. We were able to develop rules for interaction after World War II, and we were able to reach an agreement in Helsinki in the 1970s. Our common duty is to resolve this fundamental challenge at this new stage of development.

Thank you very much for your attention.


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Everyman Standing Order 01: In the Face of Tyranny; Everybody Stands, Nobody Runs.
Everyman Standing Order 02: Everyman is Responsible for Energy and Security.
Everyman Standing Order 03: Everyman knows Timing is Critical in any Movement.
   
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