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Dangerous military confrontations with Russia in the Ukraine and Black Sea:

All Anglo-US Forces Must be Withdrawn Immediately

The US and NATO are once again increasing their dangerous military confrontations with Russia in the Ukraine and Black Sea. Britain is also directly contributing to the situation in Ukraine with reports that six RAF Typhoon jets are "bolstering" Ukraine's forces and a "small number" of British and US special forces are "monitoring the situation". On April 14, Russia warned the US and NATO over their activity in the Black Sea and Ukraine. Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev in a session on the security of Crimea in Sevastopol said, "Stepped-up military activity by the NATO bloc, and the US in particular, in close proximity to Russia's borders in the Black Sea region has been determined." He noted that the US and its allies are "pushing Ukraine to stage provocations against Crimea, and NATO has ramped up its activities in direct proximity to Russia's borders in the Black Sea region". Russia had also said that the report of two US warships deploying to the Black Sea was "an unfriendly provocation". Later the same day, there was a confirmed report from Reuters that Turkish diplomatic sources had said, "The United States has cancelled the deployment of two warships to the Black Sea".

In the Ukraine, US-led imperialism is confronting Russia. The US-led camp, as well as the countries of "old Europe" and especially Britain, are sensing that they can make gains and lay waste to the vast plains of Ukraine and Russia even if that means, as one commentator put it, "launching these people not only into a suicidal war against Donetsk and Luhansk but also Russia herself". They have no concern for the Ukrainian and Russian people but are driven in part by the prospect of the access to and control over huge energy resources for the monopolies and oligopolies that they represent.

As some commentators have pointed out, the Anglo-US forces and NATO may not in fact be planning to attack Russia at this time but they are certainly unleashing the Ukrainian neo-Nazi forces against the Donbass, Luhansk and Crimea there by "punishing" both the Ukraine and Russia at the expense of the peoples of the region. This is at the heart of these provocations that prompted Russia to say it "will not stand aside" if it believes hostilities could lead to "mass civilian casualties" in East Ukraine.

The fascists and neo-Nazis [1] have certainly been used to foment violence in Ukraine and have taken up key positions of state. The Ukrainian "Orange Revolution" in 2004 had imposed a coalition of neo-fascists and neo-liberals, instigated and propped up by the George W Bush administration, which seized power in Kiev through mass demonstrations in the city's central Maidan Square. Ten years later in 2014, under the Obama administration, another coup took place along many of the same lines using these neo-fascists and neo-liberals to overthrow the government. Since then, many of these neo-fascists have been incorporated into Ukrainian armed forces and trained by US and British forces to be used against their own countrymen in the Donbass and Lugansk. On May 2, 2014, amongst many other crimes, these fascists set fire to a trade union building in Odessa killing around 50 people.

This is the old world of imperialism and the same Nazi "might makes right" that is being tragically played out in Ukraine by the US and NATO. These neo-liberal powers have caused huge loss of life with thousands being killed. This is a huge tragedy for the Ukrainian people who have contributed so much to the world's people in building the world's first socialist state, the Soviet Union, that made so many sacrifices in the defeat of Nazi Germany in World War II. The working class and people of Britain must play their part, alongside those of the US, and indeed around the world, in ending the intervention of Britain and the US in the region, their confrontation with Russia, and the use of force to settle international differences, which is causing such tragedies for the people.

As a justification for intervention, there is also never-ending talk of the "annexing" of the Crimea by Russia in 2014 when the referendum of the people of Crimea united them with the Russian Federation [2]. It should be noted that the ruling elite does not apply the same word of "annexation" to the north of Ireland's being part of the United Kingdom, or even offer a referendum to the people of northern Ireland on the question of a United Ireland.

For the peoples, the burning issue is how the equality of countries and the sovereign rights of nations and peoples, irrespective of their ethnic make-up, can be established or re-established. The question is how these rights can be realised and given a meaningful guarantee under the prevailing conditions.

The working class and people here in Britain must condemn the government for their direct interference and dangerous military confrontations in the Ukraine and demand that all Anglo-US armed forces of land, air and sea be withdrawn from Ukraine and the Black Sea immediately.


Notes
1. These are the heirs of the massacres at Babi Yar, which, as is common knowledge, were the tip of the iceberg of the Nazi extermination of millions of Jewish people, Roma, communists and others considered as less than human.
2. In the referendum of March 16, 2014, citizens of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and of the city of Sevastopol voted to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. The final voting figures were reported to be 96.77% in favour of joining the Russian Federation on a turnout of 83.1% of the eligible voters. Despite the media and government hysteria in Britain, Europe and Nrth America, the 135 international observers from 23 countries reported that there was neither voting under pressure nor any violations of voting rules.


Source: http://www.rcpbml.org.uk/wwie-21/ww21-13/ww21-13-01.htm
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For Your Information / Understanding anti-Putin PSYOPs: Preparing for war
« Last post by Roger on April 14, 2021, 01:49:04 PM »
Vinyard of the Saker


[this analysis was written for the Unz Review]

Intro: cause vs pretext

It is not an exaggeration to say that in the mythology of the AngloZionist Empire Putin is something akin to Satan or, at least, that he is a kind of "Sauron" who is the epitome of evil. And, we all heard that recently, Biden, in a recorded interview, declared that Putin is "a killer". When given a chance to soften this statement Jen Psaki did no such thing. We can, therefore, conclude that this was an official, deliberately planned, characterization of the Russian leader.

This kind of language was never used by western officials during the Cold War, at least not on the top levels. So why this seething hatred for Putin?

It is not because he is ex-PGU KGB SSSR. Yuri Andropov was a former KGB Chairman, and he did a lot to strengthen the KGB, its personnel and operations. Yet nobody called him a killer. Neither is this because of Crimea or the Donbass, at least not directly, because when the USSR invaded Czechoslovakia and, before that, Hungary, western politicians did not call Khrushchev or Brezhnev "killers". It is not because of the shooting down of MH-17 (western leaders all know that these are lies created by western special services), because there have been quite a few civilian airliners shot down by various states, but that did not result in the kind of total demonization of the leaders of these states. I could go on and on, but you get the point: even if we carefully parse all the accusations against Putin, we find out that the kind of total demonization he has been the subject of is quite unique in its intensity and scope.

There is a huge difference between the concepts of "cause" and "pretext", and all the examples I have given are nothing but pretexts. We need to look at the real causes of such a blind hatred for Putin.

Here we come across another list of possible reasons: first, it is undeniable that while Eltsin almost destroyed Russia as a country, Putin single-handedly "resurrected" Russia in an amazingly short time. From a country which was in tatters and a population which wanted nothing more than to become the next Germany or, failing that, at least the next Poland, Putin turned Russia into the strongest military power on the planet and he completely reshaped the Russian perception of themselves and of Russia. Not only that, but Putin used every single move by the West (like, say, sanctions, boycotts or threats) to further strengthen Russia (by means such as import substitutions, international conferences and military maneuvers). Most importantly, Putin de-coupled Russia from a lot of US controlled institutions or mechanisms, a move which also immensely served Russia.

US politicians spoke of a country with an "economy in tatters" and of a "gas station masquerading as a country". But in the real world (Zone B), the Russia economy did much better than the western ones and, as for the "energy war" between the US, the KSA and Russia, it ended in a catastrophic defeat for the USA and a triumph for Russia and, to a lesser degree, the KSA.

Then came COVID and the truly epic disaster of the West's total mismanagement of this crisis. Not only that, but the contrast of how Russia (and China!) handled the crisis and what the West did could not have been bigger. As for Russia being the first country to create a vaccine (by now, no less than three of them actually; now Russia is about to release yet another vaccine, this time protecting animals from COVID) and, worse, the country which created the best vaccine on the planet – this is a PR disaster for the West and there is nothing the West can do to soften the blow. If anything, things are only getting worse as shown by all the coming lockdowns in Europe – contrast that with this photo of happy Lavrov in China wearing a mask with "FCKNG QRNTN" written on it!

But that is not the real reason either, as shown by the fact that the West already hated Putin long before COVID.

The "stolen" Cold War victory

In truth, the West has a very long list of reasons for which to hate Putin and everything Russian, but I believe that there is one reason which trumps them all: the western leaders sincerely believed that they had defeated the USSR in the Cold War (even medals were made to commemorate this event) and following the collapse of the former superpower and the coming to power of a clueless, alcoholic puppet, the triumph of the West was total. At least in appearance. The reality, as always, was much more complicated.

[Sidebar: the causes and mechanisms of the collapse of the Soviet Union are not our topic today, so I will just indicate that I believe that the USSR never "collapsed" but that it was deliberately destroyed by the CPSU apparatus which decided to break up the country in order for the Party and Nomenklatura to remain in power, not at the helm of the USSR, but at the helm of the various ex-Soviet republics. Weak leaders and ideologies which nobody really believes in do not inspire people to fight for their rulers. This is why the Russian monarchy collapsed, this is why the masonic democracy of Kerenskii collapsed and this is why the Soviet Union collapsed (this is also one of the most likely reasons for the final collapse of the US as a state).]

Putin, who was not very well known in the West or, for that matter, in Russia, came to power and immediately reversed Russia's course towards the abyss. First, he dealt with the two most urgent threats, the oligarchs and the Wahabi insurrection in the Caucasus. Many Russians, including myself, were absolutely amazed at the speed and determination of his actions. As a result, Putin suddenly found himself one of the most popular leaders in Russian history. Initially, the West went into a kind of shock, then through a process reminiscent of the so-called "Kübler-Ross model" and, finally, the West settled into a russophobic frenzy not seen since the Nazi regime in Germany during WWII.

To understand why Putin is the Devil incarnate, we have to understand that the leaders of the collective West really thought that this time around, after a millennium of failures and embarrassing defeats, the West has finally "defeated" Russia which would now become a leaderless, culture-less, spiritual-less and, of course, history-less territory whose sole purpose would be to provide resources for the "Triumphant West". Not only that, but the AngloZionist leaders of the Empire executed the 9/11 false flag operation which gave them the pretext needed for the GWOT, but which completely distracted the West from its previous focus on the so-called "Russian threat" simply because by 2001 there was no Russian threat. So there was a certain logic behind these moves. And then, "suddenly" (at least for western leaders) Russia was "back": in 2013 Russia stopped the planned US/NATO attack on Syria (the pretext here was Syrian chemical weapons). In 2014 Russia gave her support to the Novorussian uprising against the Ukronazi regime in Kiev and, in the same year, Russia also used her military to make it possible for the local population to vote on a referendum to join Russia. Finally, in 2015, Russia stunned the West with an extremely effective military intervention in Syria.

In this sequence, Russia committed two very different types of "crimes" (from the AngloZionist point of view, of course):

The minor crime of doing what Russia actually did and The much bigger crime of never asking the Empire for the permission to do so

The West likes to treat the rest of the planet like some kind of junior partner, with very limited autonomy and almost no real agency (the best example is what the USA did to countries like Poland or Bulgaria). If and when any such "junior" country wants to do something in its foreign policy, it absolutely has to ask for permission from its AngloZionist Big Brother. Not doing so is something akin to sedition and revolt. In the past, many countries were "punished" or daring to have an opinion or, even more so, for daring to act on it.

It would not be inaccurate to summarize it all by saying that Putin flipped his finger to the Empire and its leaders. That "crime of crimes" was what really triggered the current anti-Russian hysteria. Soon, however, the (mostly clueless) leaders of the Empire ran into an extremely frustrating problem: while the russophobic hysteria did get a lot of traction in the West, in Russia it created a very powerful blowback because of a typical Putin "judo" move: far from trying to suppress the anti-Russian propaganda of the West, the Kremlin used its power to make it widely available (in Russian!) through the Russian media (I wrote about this in some detail here and here). The direct result of this was two fold: first, the CIA/MI6 run "opposition" began to be strongly associated with the russophobic enemies of Russia and, second, the Russian general public further rallied around Putin and his unyielding stance. In other words, calling Putin a dictator and, of course, a "new Hitler", the western PSYOPs gained some limited advantage in the western public opinion, but totally shot itself in the leg with the Russian public.

I refer to this stage as the "phase one anti-Putin strategic PSYOP". As for the outcome of this PSYOP, I would not only say that it almost completely failed, but I think that it has the exact opposite intended effect inside Russia.

A change of course was urgently needed.

The redirection of US PSYOPs against Putin and Russia

I have to admit that I have a very low opinion of the US intelligence community, including its analysts. But even the rather dull US "Russia area specialist" eventually figured out that telling the Russian public opinion that Putin was a "dictator" or a "killer of dissidents" or a "chemical poisoner of exiles" resulted in a typically Russian mix of laughter and support for the Kremlin. Something had to be done.

So some smart ass somewhere in some basement came up with the following idea: it makes no sense to accuse Putin of things which make him popular at home, so let's come up with a new list of accusations carefully tailored to the Russian public.

Let's call this a "phase two anti-Putin PSYOP operation".

And this is how the "Putin is in cahoots with" thing began. Specifically, these accusations were deployed by the US PSYOPs and those in its pay:

Putin is disarming Syria Putin will sell out the Donbass Putin is a puppet of Israel and, specifically, Netanyahu Putin is a corrupt traitor to the Russian national interests Putin is allowing Israel to bomb Syria (see here) Putin is selling the Siberian riches to China and/or Putin is subjugating Russia to China Putin is corrupt, weak and even cowardly Putin was defeated by Erdogan in the Nagorno-Karabakh war

The above are the main talking points immediately endorsed and executed by the US strategic PSYOPs against Russia.

Was it effective?

Yes, to some degree. For one thing, these "anti-Russian PSYOPS reloaded" were immediately picked up by at least part of what one could call the "internal patriotic opposition" (much of it very sincerely and without any awareness of being skillfully manipulated). Even more toxic was the emergence of a rather loud neo-Communist (or, as Ruslan Ostashko often calls them "emo-Marxist") movement (I personally refer to as a sixth column) which began an internal anti-Kremlin propaganda campaign centered on the following themes:

"All is lost" (??????????????): that is thesis which says that nothing in Russia is right, everything is either wrong or evil, the country is collapsing, so is its economy, its science, its military, etc. etc. etc. This is just a garden variety of defeatism, nothing more. "Nothing was achieved since Putin came to power": this is a weird one, since it takes an absolutely spectacular amount of mental gymnastics to not see that Putin literally saved Russia from total destruction. This stance also completely fails to explain why Putin is so hated by the Empire (if Putin did everything wrong, like, say Eltsin did, he would be adored in the West, not hated!). All the elections in Russia were stolen. Here the 5th (CIA/MI6 run) column and 6th column have to agree: according to both of them, there is absolutely no way most Russians supported Putin for so many years and there is no way they support him now. And nevermind the fact that the vast majority of polls show that Putin was, and still is, the most popular political figure in Russia.

Finally, the big SNAFU with the pension reform definitely did not help Putin's ratings, so he had to take action: he "softened" some of the worst provisions of this reform and, eventually, he successfully sidelined some of the worst Atlantic Integrationists, including Medvedev himself.

Sadly, some putatively pro-Russian websites, blogs and individuals showed their true face when they jumped on the bandwagon of this 2nd strategic PSYOP campaign, probably with the hope to either become more noticed, or get some funding, or both. Hence, all the nonsense about Russia and Israel working together or Putin "selling out" we have seen so many times recently. The worst thing here is that these websites, blogs and individuals have seriously misled and distressed some of the best real friends of Russia in the West.

None of these guys ever address a very simple question: if Putin is such a sellout, and if all is lost, why does the AngloZionist Empire hate Putin so much? In almost 1000 years of warfare (spiritual, cultural, political, economic and military) against Russia, the leaders of the West have always hated real Russian patriots and they have always loved the (alas, many) traitors to Russia. And now, they hate Putin because he is such a terrible leader?

This makes absolutely no sense.

Conclusion: is a war inevitable now?

The US/NATO don't engage in strategic PYSOPs just because they like or dislike somebody. The main purpose of such PSYOPs is to break the other side's will to resist. This was also the main objective of both (phase one and phase two) anti-Putin PSYOPs. I am happy to report that both phases of these PYSOPs failed. The danger here is that these failures have failed to convince the leaders of the Empire of the need to urgently change course and accept the "Russian reality", even if they don't like it.

Ever since "Biden" (the "collective Biden", of course, not the potted plant) Administration (illegally) seized power, what we saw was a sharp escalation of anti-Russian statements. Hence, the latest "uhu, he is a killer" – this was no mistake by a senile mind, this was a carefully prepared declaration. Even worse, the Empire has not limited itself to just words, it also did some important "body moves" to signal its determination to seek even further confrontation with Russia:

There has been a lot of sabre-rattling coming from the West, mostly some rather ill-advsied (or even outright stupid) military maneuvers near/along the Russian border. As I have explained it a billion times, these maneuvers are self-defeating from a military point of view (the closer to the Russian border, the more dangerous for the western military force). Politically, however, they are extremely provocative and, therefore, dangerous. The vast majority of Russian analysts do not believe that the US/NATO will openly attack Russia, if only because that would be suicidal (the current military balance in Europe is strongly in Russia's favor, even without using hypersonic weapons). What many of them now fear is that "Biden" will unleash the Ukronazi forces against the Donbass, thereby "punishing" both the Ukraine and Russia (the former for its role in the US presidential campaign). I tend to agree with both of these statements.

At the end of the day, the AngloZionist Empire was always racist at its core, and that empire is still racist: for its leaders, the Ukrainian people are just cannon fodder, an irrelevant third rate nation with no agency which has outlived its utility (US analysts do understand that the US plan for the Ukraine has ended in yet another spectacular faceplant such delusional plans always end up with, even if they don't say so publicly). So why not launch these people into a suicidal war against not only the LDNR but also Russia herself? Sure, Russia will quickly and decisively win the military war, but politically it will be a PR disaster for Russia as the "democratic West" will always blame Russia, even when she clearly did not attack first (as was the case in 08.08.08, most recently).

I have already written about the absolutely disastrous situation of the Ukraine three weeks ago so I won't repeat it all here, I will just say that since that day things have gotten even much worse: suffice to say that the Ukraine has moved a lot of heavy armor to the line of contact while the regime in Kiev has now banned the import of Russian toilet paper (which tells you what the ruling gang thinks of as important and much needed measures). While it is true that the Ukraine has become a totally failed state since the Neo-Nazi coup, there is now a clear acceleration of the collapse of not only the regime or state, but of the country as a whole. Ukraine is falling apart so fast that one could start an entire website tracking only all this developing horror, not day by day, but, hour by hour. Suffice to say that "Ze" has turned out to be even worse than Poroshenko. The only thing Poroshenko did which "Ze" has not (yet!) is to start a war. Other than that, the rest of what he did (by action or inaction) can only be qualified as "more of the same, only worse".

Can a war be prevented?

I don't know. Putin gave the Ukronazis a very stern warning ("grave consequences for Ukraine's statehood as such"). I don't believe for one second that anybody in power in Kiev gives a damn about the Ukraine or the Ukrainian statehood, but they are smart enough to realize that a Russian counter-attack in defense of the LDNR and, even more so, Crimea, might include precision "counter-leadership" strikes with advanced missiles. The Ukronazi leaders would be well-advised to realize that they all have a crosshair painted on their heads. They might also think about this: what happened to every single Wahabi gang leader in Chechnya since the end of the 2nd Chechen war? (hint: they were all found and executed). Will that be enough to stop them?

Maybe. Let's hope so.

But we must now keep in mind that for the foreseeable future there are only two options left for the Ukraine: "a horrible ending or a horror without end" (Russian expression).

The best scenario for the people of the Ukraine would be a (hopefully relatively peaceful) breakup of the country into manageable parts. The worst option would definitely be a full-scale war against Russia.

Judging by the rhetoric coming out of Kiev these days, most Ukrainian politicians are firmly behind option #2, especially since that is also the only option acceptable to their overseas masters. The Ukrainians have also adopted a new military doctrine (they call it a "military security strategy of Ukraine") which declares Russia the aggressor state and military adversary of the Ukraine (see here for a machine translation of the official text).

This might be the reason why Merkel and Macron recently had a videoconference with Putin ("Ze" was not invited): Putin might be trying to convince Merkel and Macron that such a war would be a disaster for Europe. In the meantime, Russia is rapidly reinforcing her forces along the Ukrainian border, including in Crimea.

But all these measures can only deter a regime which has no agency. The outcome shall be decided in Washington DC, not Kiev. I am afraid that the traditional sense of total impunity of US political leaders will, once again, give them a sense of very little risk (for them personally or for the USA) in triggering a war in the Ukraine. The latest news on the US-Ukrainian front is the delivery by the USN of 350 tonnes of military equipment in Odessa. Not enough to be militarily significant, but more than enough to further egg on the regime in Kiev to an attack on the Donbass and/or Crimea.

In fact, I would not even put it past "Biden" to launch an attack on Iran while the world watches the Ukraine and Russia go to war. After all, the other country whose geostrategic position has been severely degraded since Russia moved her forces to Syria is Israel, the one country which all US politicians will serve faithfully and irrespective of any costs (including human costs for the USA). The Israelis have been demanding a war on Iran since at least 2007, and it would be very naive to hope that they won't eventually get their way. Last, but not least, there is the crisis which Bliken's condescending chutzpah triggered with China which, so far, has resulted in an economic war only, but which might also escalate at any moment, especially considering all the many recent anti-Chinese provocations by the US Navy.

Right now the weather in the eastern Ukraine is not conducive to offensive military operations. The snow is still melting, creating very difficult and muddy road conditions (called "rasputitsa" in Russian) which greatly inhibit the movement of forces and troops. These conditions will, however, change with the warmer season coming, at which point the Ukronazi forces will be ideally poised for an attack.

In other words, barring some major development, we might be only weeks away from a major war.

The Saker
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   The overthrow of Evo Morales and the first lithium war
Voltaire Network, by Thierry Meyssan

Mar 16, 2021


   The world was used to oil wars since the end of the 19th century. Now the wars over lithium, a mineral that is essential for mobile phones, but above all for electric cars, are beginning. Foreign Office documents obtained by a British historian and journalist show that the UK engineered the overthrow of Bolivian president Evo Morales to steal the country's lithium reserves.

While you were watching him clown around, Boris Johnson oversaw the overthrow of President Morales in Bolivia, occupied the island of Socotra off the coast of Yemen, and organised Turkey's victory over Armenia. You haven't heard any discussion of this.

Remember the overthrow of Bolivian President Evo Morales in late 2019. At the time, the mainstream press claimed that he had turned his country into a dictatorship and had just been ousted by his people. The Organisation of American States (OAS) issued a report certifying that the elections had been rigged and that democracy was being restored.

However, President Morales, who feared he would end up like Chilean President Salvador Allende and had fled to Mexico, denounced a coup d'état organised to seize the country's lithium reserves. But he failed to identify the principals and was met with nothing but sarcasm in the West. Only we revealed that the operation had been carried out by a community of Croatian Ustasha Catholics, present in the country in Santa Cruz since the end of the Second World War; a NATO stay-behind network [1].

A year later, President Morales' party won new elections by a large majority [2]. There was no challenge and he was able to return triumphantly to his country [3]. His so-called dictatorship had never existed, while that of Jeanine Áñez had just been overthrown at the ballot box.

Historian Mark Curtis and journalist Matt Kennard had access to declassified Foreign Office documents which they studied. They published their findings on the Declassified UK website, based in South Africa since its military censorship in the UK [4].

Throughout his work, Mark Curtis has shown that UK policy was hardly changed by decolonisation. We have cited his work in dozens of articles on Voltaire Network.

It appears that the overthrow of President Morales was a commission from the Foreign Office and elements of the CIA that eluded the Trump administration. Its aim was to steal the country's lithium, which the UK covets in the context of the energy transition.

The Obama administration had already attempted a coup d'état in 2009, which was repressed by President Morales and led to the expulsion of several US diplomats and officials. In contrast, the Trump administration apparently gave the neoconservatives a free hand in Latin America, but systematically prevented them from carrying out their plans.

Lithium is a component of batteries. It is found mainly in the brines of high-altitude salt deserts in the mountains of Chile, Argentina and especially Bolivia ("the lithium triangle"), and even in Tibet, the "salars". But also in solid form in certain minerals extracted from mines, particularly in Australia. It is essential for the transition from petrol cars to electric vehicles. It has therefore become a more important issue than oil in the context of the Paris Agreements supposed to combat global warming.

In February 2019, President Evo Morales gave permission to a Chinese company, TBEA Group, to exploit his country's main lithium reserves. The UK therefore devised a plan to steal it.

Evo Morales, an Aymara Indian, became president of Bolivia in 2006. He represented the producers of coca; a local plant essential to life at high altitude, but also a powerful drug banned worldwide by the US virtue leagues. His election and governance marked the return of the Indians to power who had been excluded since Spanish colonisation.

- As early as 2017-18, the UK sent experts to Bolivia's national company, Yacimientos de Litio Bolivianos (YLB), to assess the conditions for Bolivian lithium mining. - In 2019-20, London funded a study to "optimise the exploration and production of Bolivian lithium using British technology". - In April 2019, the UK Embassy in Buenos Aires organised a seminar with representatives from Argentina, Chile and Bolivia mining companies and governments, to present the benefits of using the London Metal Exchange. The Morales administration was represented by one of its ministers. - Immediately after the coup, the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) was found to be financing the British projects. - The Foreign Office had commissioned - long before the coup - an Oxford company, Satellite Applications Catapult, to map lithium reserves. It was not paid by the IADB until after the overthrow of President Morales. - A few months later, the UK embassy in La Paz organised a seminar for 300 stakeholders with the help of Watchman UK. This company specialises in how to involve people in projects that violate their interests, in order to prevent them from revolting.

Before and after the coup, the British embassy in Bolivia neglected the capital La Paz and focused on the Santa Cruz region, where the Ustasha Croats had legally taken power. There, it multiplied cultural and commercial events.

To neutralise the Bolivian banks, the British embassy in La Paz organised a seminar on computer security eight months before the coup. The diplomats introduced DarkTrace (a company set up by the British internal security services), explaining that only banks that used DarkTrace for their security would be able to work with the City.

According to Mark Curtis and Matthew Kennard, the US did not participate in the plot as such, but officials left the CIA to prepare it. DarkTrace, for example, recruited Marcus Fowler, a CIA cyber operations specialist, and especially Alan Wade, the agency's former head of intelligence. Most of the operation's personnel were British, including the heads of Watchman UK, Christopher Goodwin-Hudson (a former career military officer, then director of security at Goldman-Sachs) and Gabriel Carter (a member of the very private Special Forces Club in Knightsbridge who had distinguished himself in Afghanistan).

The historian and the journalist also state that the British embassy provided the Organisation of American States with the data it used to 'prove' that the election had been rigged; a report that was later refuted by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) [5] before being refuted by the Bolivians themselves during the following elections.

The current situation proves Mark Curtis's work as a historian right. For example, in the three years since the coup in Bolivia (2019), we have shown London's role in the Yemen war (2020) [6] and the Nagorno-Karabakh war (2020) [7].

The UK conducts short wars and covert operations, if possible without the media picking up on its actions. It controls the perception of its presence through a multitude of news agencies and media outlets that it secretly subsidises. It creates unmanageable living conditions for those on whom it imposes them. It uses them to exploit the country to its advantage. Moreover, it can keep this situation going for as long as possible in the certainty that its victims will still appeal to it, it only being capable of calming the conflict it has created itself. Thierry Meyssan Translation Roger Lagassé

http://markcurtis.info/2007/02/01/web-of-deceit/
4
For Your Information / Lawyers demand Labour explain hiring of Israeli spy
« Last post by Roger on March 06, 2021, 09:52:07 AM »

   Lawyers demand Labour explain hiring of Israeli spy
The Electronic Intifada, Asa Winstanley

Mar 2, 2021


   A leading British human rights law firm has written to Labour demanding answers on the party's hiring of a former Israeli spy.

Jamie Potter from Bindmans announced on Tuesday that the firm was acting on behalf of Adnan Hmidan, a British Palestinian Labour member.

"I am very concerned that the Labour Party has recruited a former Israeli spy to a position that involves monitoring the social media accounts of its members," Hmidan said in a statement from the law firm.

The hiring of Bindmans appears to be a precursor to legal action.

In January, The Electronic Intifada exclusively revealed that the Labour Party had hired Assaf Kaplan to help run its social media operation.

The position Kaplan was hired to fill is based in the office of party leader Keir Starmer, putting him in close proximity to Labour's highest officials.

Kaplan has admitted online to being a "veteran" of Unit 8200, the Israeli military's cyberwarfare division.

Unit 8200 is directly implicated in the killings of Palestinians, as well as mass surveilliance, blackmail and harassment targeting the entire Palestinian population living under Israeli occupation.

A Labour job description stated that Kaplan would now be responsible for "social listening" – monitoring members' social media.

Is members' data safe?

The Labour Party has so far refused to comment on the revelation. Kaplan himself has not commented.

Hmidan said that Labour has "failed to confirm what steps, if any, have been taken to limit the risks to these members or to ensure that our data is not processed without our consent."

Hmidan says he is worried about what Kaplan could be doing with Labour members' data, especially British Palestinians and those opposed to the occupation of Palestine.

Lawyer Jamie Potter said that given Kaplan's background, "it is deeply concerning that the Labour Party recruited him without providing any assurances whatsoever to its Palestinian and other members, and has still not done so despite senior figures within the party condemning the recruitment."

Labour's former shadow finance minister John McDonnell in January responded to the news with concern. "I believe most party members will be bewildered to say the least," he told Middle East Eye.

McDonnell, an ally of former leader Jeremy Corbyn, said that, "Despite all the social media talent available in our movement, the party has decided to recruit someone with a track record of working in an intelligence organization roundly condemned for its role in the abuse of the human rights of Palestinians."

Chris Mullin, a former foreign office minister in the Tony Blair government, also told the website: "I am not sure if this is a good idea. Is he still working for the Israelis or for the Labour Party?"

Mullin was a supporter of Corbyn and wrote the 1982 novel A Very British Coup, about British spies and civil servants conspiring to overthrow a left-wing anti-imperialist Labour leader.

Bindmans lawyer Jamie Potter said that the firm hopes "the Labour Party will now engage with our client and respond fully to his questions concerning the recruitment decision."

The Electronic Intifada understands that depending on how Labour responds, the firm could potentially take legal action.
5

US-backed SDF militants steal 140,000 barrels per day of Syrian oil in Hasakah: Report
Press TV

Feb 21, 2021


   Militants of the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which is supported by the United States, steal 140,000 barrels of crude oil on a daily basis from oil fields in Syria's northeastern province of Hasakah, a report says.

Ghassan Halim Khalil, governor of Hasakah, announced the grim news in an interview with the Lebanese al-Akhbar newspaper on Saturday, adding that Syrian oil is being plundered by the SDF militants in various ways, all with the participation and support of American forces deployed to the region.

He stressed that precise intelligence collected and received show that US-backed militants use tanker trucks from Taramish area in the vicinity of Tigris and in al-Malikiyah to smuggle the Syrian oil to neighboring Iraq.

Khalil further noted that many tanker trucks pass through the illegal al-Mahmoudiyah crossing into Iraq every day, adding that the SDF militants also regularly send mounts of stolen oil to their controlled areas in Syria.

The Syrian governor also revealed that the US forces have ordered the SDF militants not to allow the Damascus-controlled areas receive oil.

Khalil added that while the Syrian people are suffering from the cold weather and hunger, these US-supported militants plunder Syria's national oil resources.

The US looting of Syrian oil was first confirmed during a Senate hearing exchange between South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham and then US secretary of state Mike Pompeo last July.

During his testimony to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Pompeo confirmed for the first time that an American oil company would begin work in northeastern Syria, which is controlled by the SDF, which is an alliance of Kurdish militants operating against Damascus and currently controls areas in northern and eastern Syria.

The Syrian government at the time denounced in the strongest terms the agreement inked to plunder the country's natural resources, including Syrian oil and gas, under the sponsorship and support of the administration of former US president Donald Trump.

Since late October 2019, the US has been redeploying soldiers to the SDF-controlled oil fields in eastern Syria, in a reversal of Trump's earlier order to withdraw all troops from the war-torn country.

The Pentagon claims that the move aims to "protect" the fields and facilities from possible attacks by the Daesh Takfiri terrorists, while Trump famously said that the US seeks economic interests in controlling the oil fields.

A US-led military coalition has been pounding what it claimed was positions of Daesh inside Syria since September 2014 without any authorization from the Damascus government or a UN mandate. The strikes have on many occasions resulted in civilian casualties and failed to fulfill their declared aim of countering terrorism.




6

   Syria condemns in strongest terms US aggression on its sovereignty
26 February? 2021

Damascus, SANA -Syria condemned in the strongest terms the US aggression on areas in Deir Ezzor near the Syrian-Iraqi border yesterday, stressing it gives a negative indication to the policies of the new American administration.


   Foreign and Expatriates Ministry said in a statement that "In a flagrant violation of the rules of international law and Charter of the United Nations, the US warplanes on Thursday, February 25, 2021, launched a coward aggression by bombing some areas in Deir Ezzor province near the Syrian-Iraqi borders.

It added that the aggression was syncronized with the presence of UN Special Envoy for Syria, Geir Pedersen, in Damascus and this sends a message of a US disregard of the role of international legitimacy in resolving the crisis in Syria.

Foreign Ministry stated that this blatant aggression is a new chain in the series of repeated attacks by the Israeli occupation forces, the so-called "international coalition," the Turkish occupation, and the crimes of armed terrorist organizations against the sovereignty of the Syrian Arab Republic under illusive pretexts.

" The Syrian Arab Republic condemns in the strongest terms the US aggression against its sovereignty, which contradicts with the terms of international law and the United Nations Charter and with its role as a permanent member of the Security Council," the statement said.

It warned that this aggression will lead to repercussions that escalate the situation in the region, as well as it gives a negative indication to the policies of the new US administration, which is supposed to adhere to international legitimacy.

The Ministry went on to say that the Syrian Arab Republic calls on the US to change its aggressive policy towards it and stop aggression against its sovereignty.

It added that the government of the Syrian Arab Republic affirms its determination to restore every inch of the land and liberate it from the occupation and terrorism.





7

   Biden's Post-Trump NATO Reset Points to Failing U.S. Global Power in Multipolar World
Strategic Culture Foundation

February 19, 2021


   The more the US pushes NATO as its vehicle, the more it is apparent that the battery of American power is running flat.

A month after his inauguration, President Joe Biden's administration formally engaged on the international stage this week to set out key foreign policies.

His Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin addressed a two-day NATO summit via video link in which he relayed the message from Biden that the US would re-engage with transatlantic European allies. Four years of Donald Trump's abrasive America First policy was being jettisoned in place of a more smooth, consensual approach under Biden.

President Biden would himself address videoconferences of the Group of Seven nations held Friday, as well as the annual Munich Security Conference over the weekend. A major development is the Biden administration's announcement that it is ready to rejoin the international nuclear accord with Iran, thereby repudiating Trump's rejection of that deal. It remains to be seen, however, just what the Biden administration will want in exchange for honoring its signature to the treaty which was negotiated in 2015.

Other policy reversals include US troops remaining in Germany in contrast to Trump's plan to draw down numbers. That sounds like another exercise in repairing relations with the Europeans.

Previously, Biden also announced he would negotiate with Russia on extending the New START treaty limiting nuclear weapons. The latter move is cautiously welcomed. But, again, it remains to be seen.

There's no doubt about the change in style. The Biden administration is promising to be collegiate about strategic decision-making with European allies. The bullying rhetoric used by Trump for hectoring European members to spend more on NATO military commitments has been ditched by Biden. The Washington establishment was acutely concerned that Trump's transactional tirades were alienating European allies and undermining the 30-nation NATO alliance, which in turn was diminishing America's authority and frustrating its interests.

Historically, the United States relies on NATO as a conduit to project its power and influence over Europe. This was its fundamental objective when NATO was first set up in 1949 at the start of the Cold War against the Soviet Union. In recent decades, NATO has assumed an ever-expanding purpose for American imperial power projection, encompassing not just Western Europe but all of Europe right up to Russia's borders. NATO has become a vehicle for American hegemonic ambitions holding sway over the Balkans, Caucasia, North Africa and the Middle East, Africa and Asia-Pacific.

For an organization that nominally originated for maintaining security in the North Atlantic, it sounds rather odd indeed to hear its spokesmen talk now about the need for NATO to confront China. That oddly expanded global mission reflects the real but unspoken fact that NATO is all about serving American global ambitions.

Former President Trump was too ignorant or obsessed with money-grubbing financial costs – "we're being ripped off" he would repeatedly complain with regard to NATO – to realize the strategic bigger picture of what the alliance is really purposed to serve.

Under a new man in the White House – an old-time establishment operative – there is seemingly a more consensual approach with allies. Nevertheless, underlying the liberal lexicon there is the same old mantra of hostility towards Russia and China.

Lloyd Austin, the Pentagon chief, told European allies this week that there would have to be "more burden sharing" in order to confront the "threats" allegedly posed by Russia and China. Biden continued the same theme of confronting Russia and China during his G7 and Munich conferences over the weekend.

American hegemonic ambitions required to satisfy its corporate capitalism are dependent on a zero-sum geopolitics. The globe must divided into spheres of influence as in the earlier Cold War decades. There must be antagonism to thwart genuine cooperation which is anathema to American capitalism. Indeed, it can be said that the Cold War never actually ended when the Soviet Union dissolved more three decades ago. America's imperialist ideology continued under new guises of "fighting terrorism", "democracy promotion and nation building", or more recently "great power competition" with Russia and China.

The bottom line is that NATO is more important than ever for enabling Washington's global power ambitions given the demise of American capitalism and the rise of China and Eurasia. NATO provides a crucial political cover for what would otherwise be seen as naked American imperialism.

The contradiction, however, is that the world is increasingly moving towards a multipolar realm where nations are more interdependent and integrated in economic relations. Russia and China are major trading and investment partners with Europe, not adversaries, and even less so enemies. The latter depiction is absurd.

The only people claiming that Russia and China are a "threat" are the Americans, regardless of who is sitting in the White House, whether Republican or Democrat. (Well, not the only people. There are minor figures in Europe, such as the reactionary, rightwing Baltic politicians, who also spout Russophobia and Sinophobia in dutiful deference to their American mentors.)

Thus it can be adjudged that there will be no fundamental post-Trump reset of NATO under Biden. The organization remains what it has always been, a war machine to advance American imperialist objectives of hegemony. The only difference is the Biden administration is more savvy about projecting a more palatable image and rhetoric about "consensus", "diversity" and "burden sharing".

This revamped, yet in essence ideologically rigid, NATO suffers serious dissonance in practical relations with the real world of multipolar evolution. Biden will try to cohere NATO members to America's global ambitions but those same members are inevitably aligning with the rest of the world out of their own political and economic self-interest. The more militaristic NATO tries to become at the goading of the Americans and their European flunkies like Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, the more the alliance is likely to unravel. Its imperialist function is no longer fit for purpose nor viable in today's world.

The more the US pushes NATO as its vehicle, the more it is apparent that the battery of American power is running flat
8
The fact that Xi and Putin were there was significant and the billionaire media did not report what they said.


   Davos 2021 Speeches by Putin and Xi Point to a Different Future
New Eastern Outlook, James ONeill

Feb 2, 2021


   The Davos Group of nations recently held its annual meeting electronically, the coronavirus preventing attendance in person for the first time. The United States was represented by John Kerry, one of many Democrats recycled from the Obama years. Russia was represented by its president, Vladimir Putin, and China, for the first time since 2017, by its president Xi Jinping. The western media largely ignored the contribution of the latter two but what they had to say was significant and worthy of closer examination.

Putin had received a copy of a book in 2019 from one of the main conference organisers, a personal friend Klaus Schwab. The book was entitled The Fourth Industrial Revolution and was written by Schwab. Putin used the contents of the book as one of the main themes of his address.

The theme of the book had obviously been overtaken by the events of 2020's coronavirus, but it still provided several important talking points that Putin used to structure his speech. He noted that the Covid 19 illness had accelerated numerous pre-existing structural problems in the world economy, particularly what he referred to as the cumulative effects of sub-economic problems that he identified as being the fundamental reason for unstable growth.

That unstable growth has led to a growing exacerbation of many international problems. Referring to the growing inequality in the world's economy, he laid the blame squarely at the door of the richest 1% who dominated income and profits. This led in turn to a growing exacerbation of many international problems.

Expecting these problems to be identified, much less addressed, was unlikely, not least because the mainstream media is unlikely to identify the source of the problem, given that their owners are overwhelmingly from the same 1%. The degree of foreign policy propaganda rhetoric was growing. Although he did not say so directly, it is obvious that Russia has long been a victim of mass disinformation from the western media.

Putin pointed out that he could expect the nature of practical actions to become more aggressive, including pressure on countries that resist the attempts by unnamed powers, but clearly alluding to the United States, to use illegitimate trade barriers, sanctions and other restrictions in finance, technology and cyber space to control the recalcitrant.

The end result of such a game, with no rules, or at least a set of rules for the elites which can be modified at will, critically increases the risk of unilateral military action.

Putin identified four priorities which the world must adopt to avoid these disastrous consequences occurring. First, there should be comfortable living conditions for everyone. This will be extraordinarily difficult to attain and he offered no real clues as to how the problem might be overcome.

Secondly, the aim must be for everyone to have a job that would ensure sustainable growth and income, and access to lifelong education which he defined as being absolutely indispensable.

Thirdly, people must be confident that they will receive high-quality medical care.

Fourthly, regardless of family income, children must receive a decent education.

These were not exhaustive demands, but they arguably provide the essential basis for a civilised life. Many countries have already achieved this, including the Scandinavian countries and New Zealand. Even among the so-called developed world there are glaring inequalities and they will not be overcome in the immediate future.

This grim reality was acknowledged in Putin's final comment when he said that competition and rivalry between countries never stopped, do not stop, and never will stop. The challenge will be to ensure the rivalry does not deteriorate into war.

Xi for his part identified four major tasks facing the contemporary world. First, the world needed to "step up" macro-economic policy coordination to promote strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth in the world economy.

Secondly, he said, the world needed to "abandon ideological prejudice, and jointly follow a path of peaceful coexistence, mutual benefit and (using a phrase with which he is identified) win-win cooperation."

Differences in societies is not itself a cause for alarm. What did bring alarm, he noted, was "arrogance, prejudice and hatred." Xi quite bluntly identified a major problem as attempts to "force one's own history, culture and social systems upon another."

That final phrase needs to be read and absorbed by many western leaders, including notably Australia, who perceive the growth of China as an existential threat to their own existence. There is no evidence to support these fears, but they are a constant refrain in western media analysis.

Thirdly, Xi said, the challenge is to close the divide between the developed and the developing countries. The growth of developing countries would put prosperity and stability on a more solid footing.

Fourthly, we needed to come together against global challenges. No global problem can be solved by one country alone, and wilfully imposing decoupling, supply disruption and sanctions to create isolation and estrangement would only push the world toward divisions and confrontation.

And what may be perceived as a direct challenge to western claims to enjoy a monopoly on support for their interpretation of the law, Xi stated that "we should stay committed to international law and international rules, instead of seeking one's own supremacy." International government, he said, should be based on the "rules and consensus reached among us, not on the order given by one or the few."

That last phrase alone would be enough to set a rumble among the western powers, who for too long have claimed a monopoly on the "rules based international order." What they really mean is their rules and their order. Xi was sending a clear message that those days are over and international law means just that, rather than the preserve of the wealthy few whose dictates for the past 70+ years have been the source of endless strife and benefits accumulating for the rich few.

It is doubtful that the west will listen to either Putin or Xi, much less modify their behaviour. The world however has changed. The sooner the old western powers recognise that change and modify their behaviour, the sooner we are likely to achieve the goals set out so clearly by both Putin and Xi. The limited coverage their speeches received in the west does not augur well. As the multiple series of agreements being made by diverse nations in the greater Eurasian region demonstrate however, the old world is rapidly disappearing. The sooner that is recognised the safer the world will be.

James O'Neill, an Australian-based former Barrister at Law, exclusively for the online magazine "New Eastern Outlook".
9
We were talking about Putin these are  from the Economic Forum and for your info:

This Is Why They Attack Him - Putin Explains Why We Need New Economic Policies
Moon of Alabama

Feb 2, 2021


   The President of Russia Vladimir Putin has given a great speech to the Davos 2021 online forum organized by the World Economic Forum. As usual it created little echo in the 'western' media.

Putin sees a new danger of large international conflicts. Economic imbalances have caused socio-political problems in many countries which, when externalized, can lead to international conflicts.

To solve this one has to reject the laissez faire doctrines that caused the economic imbalances. The nation states must intervene more in their economies. The people must be seen as the ends, not the means of such economic policy. There must be more international cooperation through global organizations to enable this everywhere.

There is more in the speech than that. But the above is the core idea. U.S. neo-liberalism will of course reject such a program.

Following are excerpts that reflect on the above points.

The big picture view points to great danger:

The pandemic has exacerbated the problems and imbalances that built up in the world before. There is every reason to believe that differences are likely to grow stronger. These trends may appear practically in all areas.

Needless to say, there are no direct parallels in history. However, some experts – and I respect their opinion – compare the current situation to the 1930s. One can agree or disagree, but certain analogies are still suggested by many parameters, including the comprehensive, systemic nature of the challenges and potential threats.

We are seeing a crisis of the previous models and instruments of economic development. Social stratification is growing stronger both globally and in individual countries. We have spoken about this before as well. But this, in turn, is causing today a sharp polarisation of public views, provoking the growth of populism, right- and left-wing radicalism and other extremes, and the exacerbation of domestic political processes including in the leading countries.

All this is inevitably affecting the nature of international relations and is not making them more stable or predictable. International institutions are becoming weaker, regional conflicts are emerging one after another, and the system of global security is deteriorating.

Klaus [Schwab] has mentioned the conversation I had yesterday with the US President on extending the New START. This is, without a doubt, a step in the right direction. Nevertheless, the differences are leading to a downward spiral. As you are aware, the inability and unwillingness to find substantive solutions to problems like this in the 20th century led to the WWII catastrophe.

Putin then goes into the details of the above theses.

What caused the current economic imbalances?

These imbalances in global socioeconomic development are a direct result of the policy pursued in the 1980s, which was often vulgar or dogmatic. This policy rested on the so-called Washington Consensus with its unwritten rules, when the priority was given to the economic growth based on a private debt in conditions of deregulation and low taxes on the wealthy and the corporations.

As I have already mentioned, the coronavirus pandemic has only exacerbated these problems. In the last year, the global economy sustained its biggest decline since WWII. By July, the labour market had lost almost 500 million jobs. Yes, half of them were restored by the end of the year but still almost 250 million jobs were lost. This is a big and very alarming figure. In the first nine months of the past year alone, the losses of earnings amounted to $3.5 trillion. This figure is going up and, hence, social tension is on the rise.

At the same time, post-crisis recovery is not simple at all. If some 20 or 30 years ago, we would have solved the problem through stimulating macroeconomic policies (incidentally, this is still being done), today such mechanisms have reached their limits and are no longer effective. This resource has outlived its usefulness. This is not an unsubstantiated personal conclusion.

According to the IMF, the aggregate sovereign and private debt level has approached 200 percent of global GDP, and has even exceeded 300 percent of national GDP in some countries. At the same time, interest rates in developed market economies are kept at almost zero and are at a historic low in emerging market economies.

Taken together, this makes economic stimulation with traditional methods, through an increase in private loans virtually impossible. The so-called quantitative easing is only increasing the bubble of the value of financial assets and deepening the social divide. The widening gap between the real and virtual economies (incidentally, representatives of the real economy sector from many countries have told me about this on numerous occasions, and I believe that the business representatives attending this meeting will agree with me) presents a very real threat and is fraught with serious and unpredictable shocks.

The economic imbalances create deep socio-political problems:

In this context, I would like to mention the second fundamental challenge of the forthcoming decade – the socio-political one. The rise of economic problems and inequality is splitting society, triggering social, racial and ethnic intolerance. Indicatively, these tensions are bursting out even in the countries with seemingly civil and democratic institutions that are designed to alleviate and stop such phenomena and excesses.

The systemic socioeconomic problems are evoking such social discontent that they require special attention and real solutions. The dangerous illusion that they may be ignored or pushed into the corner is fraught with serious consequences.

In this case, society will still be divided politically and socially. This is bound to happen because people are dissatisfied not by some abstract issues but by real problems that concern everyone regardless of the political views that people have or think they have. Meanwhile, real problems evoke discontent.

The danger rises when the socio-political problems get externalized:

And finally, the third challenge, or rather, a clear threat that we may well run into in the coming decade is the further exacerbation of many international problems. After all, unresolved and mounting internal socioeconomic problems may push people to look for someone to blame for all their troubles and to redirect their irritation and discontent. We can already see this. We feel that the degree of foreign policy propaganda rhetoric is growing.

We can expect the nature of practical actions to also become more aggressive, including pressure on the countries that do not agree with a role of obedient controlled satellites, use of trade barriers, illegitimate sanctions and restrictions in the financial, technological and cyber spheres.

Such a game with no rules critically increases the risk of unilateral use of military force. The use of force under a far-fetched pretext is what this danger is all about. This multiplies the likelihood of new hot spots flaring up on our planet. This concerns us.

What can be done to prevent the danger which arises from socio-political problems caused by imbalanced economies?

Clearly, with the above restrictions and macroeconomic policy in mind, economic growth will largely rely on fiscal incentives with state budgets and central banks playing the key role.

Actually, we can see these kinds of trends in the developed countries and also in some developing economies as well. An increasing role of the state in the socioeconomic sphere at the national level obviously implies greater responsibility and close interstate interaction when it comes to issues on the global agenda. ... It is clear that the world cannot continue creating an economy that will only benefit a million people, or even the golden billion. This is a destructive precept. This model is unbalanced by default. The recent developments, including migration crises, have reaffirmed this once again.

We must now proceed from stating facts to action, investing our efforts and resources into reducing social inequality in individual countries and into gradually balancing the economic development standards of different countries and regions in the world. This would put an end to migration crises.

The essence and focus of this policy aimed at ensuring sustainable and harmonious development are clear. They imply the creation of new opportunities for everyone, conditions under which everyone will be able to develop and realise their potential regardless of where they were born and are living.

Here Putin sets the goals for national strategies:

I would like to point out four key priorities, as I see them. This might be old news, but since Klaus has allowed me to present Russia's position, my position, I will certainly do so.

First, everyone must have comfortable living conditions, including housing and affordable transport, energy and public utility infrastructure. Plus environmental welfare, something that must not be overlooked.

Second, everyone must be sure that they will have a job that can ensure sustainable growth of income and, hence, decent standards of living. Everyone must have access to an effective system of lifelong education, which is absolutely indispensable now and which will allow people to develop, make a career and receive a decent pension and social benefits upon retirement.

Third, people must be confident that they will receive high-quality and effective medical care whenever necessary, and that the national healthcare system will guarantee access to modern medical services.

Fourth, regardless of the family income, children must be able to receive a decent education and realise their potential. Every child has potential.

This is the only way to guarantee the cost-effective development of the modern economy, in which people are perceived as the end, rather than the means. Only those countries capable of attaining progress in at least these four areas will facilitate their own sustainable and all-inclusive development. These areas are not exhaustive, and I have just mentioned the main aspects.

A strategy, also being implemented by my country, hinges on precisely these approaches.

What should be done globally:

We are open to the broadest international cooperation, while achieving our national goals, and we are confident that cooperation on matters of the global socioeconomic agenda would have a positive influence on the overall atmosphere in global affairs, and that interdependence in addressing acute current problems would also increase mutual trust which is particularly important and particularly topical today.

Obviously, the era linked with attempts to build a centralised and unipolar world order has ended. To be honest, this era did not even begin. A mere attempt was made in this direction, but this, too, is now history. The essence of this monopoly ran counter to our civilisation's cultural and historical diversity.

The reality is such that really different development centres with their distinctive models, political systems and public institutions have taken shape in the world. Today, it is very important to create mechanisms for harmonising their interests to prevent the diversity and natural competition of the development poles from triggering anarchy and a series of protracted conflicts.

To achieve this we must, in part, consolidate and develop universal institutions that bear special responsibility for ensuring stability and security in the world and for formulating and defining the rules of conduct both in the global economy and trade.

It is no wonder that the neo-liberal 'west' constantly attacks Putin and at the same time takes care that his speech gets as little attention as possible. It is dangerous because it could give the deplorables some ideas.

It is also sad that no 'western' politician I am aware of would ever give such a speech.

10


By Craig MURRAY

It has been a long and tiring day, with the startlingly unexpected decision to block Julian’s extradition. The judgement is in fact very concerning, in that it accepted all of the prosecution’s case on the right of the US Government to prosecute publishers worldwide of US official secrets under the Espionage Act. The judge also stated specifically that the UK Extradition Act of 2003 deliberately permits extradition for political offences. These points need to be addressed. But for now we are all delighted at the ultimate decision that extradition should be blocked.

The decision was based equally on two points; the appalling conditions in US supermax prisons, and the effect of those conditions on Julian specifically given his history of depression. The media has concentrated on the mental health aspect, and given insufficient attention to the explicit condemnation of the inhumanity of the US prison system.

I was the only person physically present in the public gallery inside the court, having been nominated by John Shiption to represent the family, aside from two court officials. I am quite sure that I again noted magistrate Baraitser have a catch in her throat when discussing the inhumane conditions in US supermax prisons, the lack of human contact, and specifically the fact that inmates are kept in total isolation in a small cage, and are permitted one hour exercise a day in total isolation in another small cage. I noted her show emotion the same way when discussing the al-Masri torture evidence during the trial, and she seemed similarly affected here.

Julian looked well and alert; he showed no emotion at the judgement, but entered into earnest discussion with his lawyers. The US government indicated they will probably appeal the verdict, and a bail hearing has been deferred until Wednesday to decide whether he will be released from Belmarsh pending the appeal – which court sources tell me is likely to be held in April in the High Court. I should be very surprised if Julian is not released on Wednesday pending the appeal. I shall now be staying here for that bail hearing.

I apologise for not giving a full analysis of the judgement yet, it has all been rather hectic, but wonderful. Here is a brief video giving more detail. I can produce a more considered piece tomorrow.

Forgive me for pointing out that my ability to provide this coverage is entirely dependent on your kind voluntary subscriptions which keep this blog going. This post is free for anybody to reproduce or republish, including in translation. You are still very welcome to read without subscribing.

Unlike our adversaries including the Integrity Initiative, the 77th Brigade, Bellingcat, the Atlantic Council and hundreds of other warmongering propaganda operations, this blog has no source of state, corporate or institutional finance whatsoever. It runs entirely on voluntary subscriptions from its readers – many of whom do not necessarily agree with the every article, but welcome the alternative voice, insider information and debate.

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