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11 quotes that show how Vladimir Putin sees world

RT | November 23, 2017

Populist, pragmatist, authoritarian, cunning tactician – years after he rose to the top of Russian politics Western observers still wonder about Vladimir Putin’s true motivations. In fact, behind the Kremlin’s decision-making is a set of consistently expressed beliefs.

On the United States

“The USA is a great power. Probably the only superpower in existence today. We accept that and we are ready to work together with them.

What we don’t need is for them to get involved in our affairs, tell us how to live our lives, and prevent Europe from building a relationship with us.”

St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, June 2016

On allegations of Russia’s foreign meddling

“There is constant US propaganda, and direct funding of US NGOs… Is that not interference, which continues year in, year out? Take a globe, spin it, and randomly put your finger on any spot – I can guarantee that there are American interests and meddling there.

What do the Americans want? For everyone to just bow their heads in deference? We have our own opinion and we express it openly. It is not some form of undercover sabotage.”

Direct Line with Vladimir Putin, June 2017

On Europe

“Does it benefit European states to simply service Washington’s foreign and even domestic policy aims? I am not sure. Is this the purpose of serious politics, and is this the role countries take on if they desire to call themselves great powers?”

Russia Calling! Investment Forum, October 2016

On Catalonia’s independence crisis

“At one time, the EU welcomed the collapse of a whole range of states in Europe, not bothering to hide their glee. Why did they need to so thoughtlessly – for the sake of short-term interests and to please ‘Big Brother’ in Washington – unconditionally support the secession of Kosovo, provoking similar processes on the continent and beyond?”

Valdai Discussion Club, October 2017

On NATO

“There is no more Soviet Union, no Eastern Bloc. In my view, NATO needs an external enemy to justify its existence, so there is a constant search for one, and provocations to create adversaries where there are none.

…Today it is an instrument of American foreign policy. There are no partners in it, only vassals.”

Oliver Stone interview, June 2017

On the Middle East

“There has been an attempt to reformat the region, to impose an outside model on it, either through regime change, or outright use of force. Instead of fighting extremism, instead of imitating such a fight, some of our peers want chaos to become a permanent state of affairs.”

Valdai Discussion Club, October 2017

On North Korea

“Of course we condemn North Korea’s nuclear tests and comply with all UN Security Council resolutions without exception.

But to solve this problem you must use dialog, not by trying to corner North Korea with military threats, and not resort to name-calling and public exchanges of insults. Whether you like the regime in Pyongyang or hate it, you have to recognize that DPRK is a sovereign state.”

Valdai Discussion Club, October 2017

On the toppling of Viktor Yanukovich in Ukraine

“What happened in Kiev is an armed and unconstitutional seizure of power – a coup. No one is arguing with that.

The question is – why did it need to be done like that? Viktor Yanukovich had already given up his power, and had no chance of re-election. Why plunge the country into chaos? As a demonstration of power? This was a stupid decision and had the reverse effect. I believe it was these actions that destabilized the situation in the east of the country.”

Media briefing in Novo Ogarevo, March 2014

On the government in Kiev

“The interests of the Russian and the Ukrainian peoples are the same. What isn’t the same is the aims of the Ukrainian government and elites.

… They have only one good left to export for international consumption – Russophobia. And the politics of division between the two countries. Some in the West believe that these two states should never be allies, and so Ukraine has been successful exporting that idea.”

Hamburg G20 Summit, June 2017

On Russia’s political system

“Monarchy was a legacy passed down from the Empire to Soviet times, even though the plaque on the building changed. Only at the beginning of the 1990s, events came to pass which laid the foundation for a new stage of Russian development.

Certainly, you cannot imagine that we can instantaneously get the same government model, the same structures, as in the United States, in Germany, in France. Society, just as every living organism, has to develop stage-by-stage, organically. That’s the normal development process.”

Oliver Stone interview, June 2017

On Russia’s role in the world

“Russia is a country with a thousand-year history and has almost always enjoyed the privilege of a sovereign foreign policy.

We are not going to betray this tradition today. At the same time, we are well aware of how the world has changed and we have a realistic understanding of our own opportunities and potential. We would like to interact with responsible and independent partners with whom we could work together in constructing a fair and democratic world order that would ensure security and prosperity not only for a select few, but for all.”

Munich speech, February 2007

December 3, 2017 Posted by | Timeless or most popular | , | 5 Comments

Vladimir Putin and Russia versus Zionist Fairytales

By Phil Butler – New Eastern Outlook – 16.09.2017

Did you read the latest news that Vladimir Putin is rich and evil? Oh, you don’t read anymore, more power to you. Fake news has it that the Russian president has a new “secret” holiday mansion worth untold millions. Furthermore, some of the stories tell of Putin being the world’s richest and most evil man. For those of you who do not believe in fairytales, here’s a candid look at what Russians are really up against.

My initial reaction to reading “Drone footage shows Putin’s secret island mansion” at 9 News Australia was, “So what if the leader of Russia is rich?” I would have skimmed the article and moved on but for a familiar name popping up. I’ll get to the ousted industrialist shark Bill Browder in a minute, but first it’s important for readers to understand that Putin actually has little need of money in the traditional sense. Every financial magazine, every expert, and hordes of guessing investigators have tried for years to count Vladimir Putin’s gold, and to no avail. Some say he is worth more than Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos combined, but nobody can trace down this immense wealth. Amid all the speculation as to “why” the Panama Papers could not convict Putin, the pointedly obvious shines through. Nobody can trace Putin’s fortune because there isn’t one. But this is fodder for another story, let me move on to the latest Alexei Navalny fairytale and to this Browder character cited in the Australian piece.

I needn’t outline the role and the character of Alexei Navalny again here. The blogger who would be kind of Russian was last seen fueling up his drones for another flyby of Sergey Shoygu’s super secret space station home. Having attempted to label Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev a criminal for the places he’s vacationed at, Navalny seems unable to stop himself proving the insignificant. I think the best reason for Russians to ignore Putin’s biggest detractor is the simple fact he knows nothing of Russian people. Hey Navalny, heads up, Russians don’t care if Putin is rich, they only care if he does his job. Sorry, this western poster boy of change in Russia, he just sets me off. What an idiot. But let’s move on to another famous profiteer who Putin banished from Russia, the founder of Hermitage Capital Management, Bill Browder.

It’s amazing how western mainstream media and the politicians always turn to Putin haters to be experts or to get “proof” on the Russian leader. Haven’t you noticed yet how Russian mafia types like Yukos Oil oligarch Yukos Mikhail Khodorkovsky, and before him the now deceased Boris Berezovsky always pop up as “experts” on Putin? Isn’t it a bit strange that news media in the west never seem to cite people with a positive or moderate stance on Russia’s president? I am sure this coincidence is not because of the scarcity of pro-Putin experts. Whatever the reasoning, the Australian article fueled by Navalny’s drone footage dredges up another ousted financial crook who hates Putin’s guts. Most readers will identify Bill Broder with Hermitage Capital, but few will recall that the investment firm was also funded by one Beny Steimetz, the Israeli oligarch and financier just arrested (August 14) by Israeli and Swiss anti-corruption officials for wide scale fraud and money laundering. The Russian privatization shark who was once Israel’s richest man is a subject for another report. I only bring him up here to point at two facets of this war on Putin. First, the Jewish connection in all this is something that just needs to come out. Secondly, the ring of profiteers bent on Putin’s demise all have gigantic skeletons in their wardrobes. A story citing one Putin hater, when investigated, always leads to ten more. This is no coincidence.

Back to Browder, his Hermitage was at one time the largest foreign portfolio investor in Russia. That was before Vladimir Putin put a stop to the rape of Russia’s legacy and the theft of her assets. This is undeniable fact, and even the lowliest of Russian peasants know it by now. Browder, a Chicago Jew, set out to profit from Russian privatization after Yeltsin, but was thwarted like other sharks when Putin’s hammer fell on other mafiosos. RICO suits, libel cases, tax evasion charges, and ties to some of the seediest characters in world finance highlight the man who pushed the now famous Magnitsky Act into US foreign policy play. It’s no coincidence that Browder has emerged as a central player in the ongoing investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 elections. The privateer who made billions off Russian privatization turned into a human rights activist, and now he’s bent on seeing Donald Trump impeached!

The reader might be surprise to discover the source of the statement “Russia is more dangerous than ISIS” was actually Bill Browder, rather than rabid Arizona Senator John McCain. Or was McCain first? Both Russia haters told reporters of the grave danger to the US at the same time actually, back in May of 2017. Perhaps the narrative of US war hawk politicians and ousted financial henchmen has become just that convergent, but I somehow doubt the coincidence. Both Browder and McCain contend that Russian President Vladimir Putin used the country’s primary security agency, the Federal Security Service (FSB), to meddle in the U.S. presidential election, but neither has shown any proof of their claims. I mention this “coincidental” melding of message for obvious reasons. Or maybe McCain and Browder are now pals as this Browder Tweet on McCain returning to the Senate to do battle against Russia after his hospital stint suggests. What’s most amazing to me is the way FOX and other networks readily use Browder and other suspected criminals without searching out counter arguments for their stories. Maybe Rupert Murdoch can answer that one. And so on, and so on, and so on…

Every time I start researching for one of these stories I end up in a deep and dark rabbit hole of collusion and confusion. In each and every case I end up with Vladimir Putin stoically defending a position against wild assertions with no proof whatsoever. The big picture of the “game” by now is like watching a schoolyard name calling and finger pointing contest. The iconic bullies and thugs are on one end of the yard, while their target stands virtually alone looking as innocent as a lamb for a variety of reasons. It’s become ridiculous, but there’s always more.

A story by Kevin Alfred Strom at the National Vanguard, which was originally published back in 2004, adds light to a facet of the Russia privatization profiteering, and ties into some recent stories of my own here on NEO. “The Silent Coup: Putin vs. the Oligarchs” deals with these ousted oligarchs and the western investors intent on carving up Russia after the wall came down. But more importantly, the piece cites Putin on the case of Jewish mafiosos always seeming to play a role. The story of influence by Israel, AIPAC, and a cadre of Jewish billionaires converge when Strom cites Vladimir Putin in his story. Notable Jewish figures like Boris Berezovsky, Mikhail Friedman, Vladimir Gusinsky, Mikhail Khodorkovsky, and Alexander Smolensky are highlighted in the story alongside Putin’s lesser publicized views on Zionists in Russia at the time of privatization. The piece also points out the Russian people’s utter hatred for most of these Jewish oligarchs, a hatred that has absolutely nothing to do with anti-Semitism by the way. Since Putin seized the Rothschild/Khodorkovsky share of Yukos Oil, Russia has been divesting herself of the only Zionist plot that matters, the ending of Jewish mafia/oligarch control of the country. Not many readers will realize that Russia’s Central Bank (CBR) is a member of Rothschild BIS.

An article by Alexander Azadgan at KATEHON expands on the Jewish money component, and reiterates the possibility of Putin nationalizing the CBR. Given new sanctions by the US and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev describing them as “full scale economic war” waged on Russia, it’s important to observe Putin’s moves east and especially the new BRICS dealings. For Russians, it matters little if Vladimir Putin has 100 yachts and fifty mansions, as long as Russia is not raped and destroyed by the unscrupulous of the world. Putin’s job is clear, defend Russia – period. His compensation is of little consequence to his people. All we hear, read, and see about Putin’s Russia is from a London, Brussels, or Washington standpoint – never a Moscow one. The influence of Zionist bankers is well known to Russians, and almost unheard of by Americans. The enemy Russia really consists of Zionists and technocrats who do know the name of the game, and the public they use to do their bidding. In the same way the Jewish religion and Jewish people are used for the Zionist bankers’ purposes, the waiting public is leveraged through blind ignorance and propaganda against Russia. For those who believe alternative fairytales I can only say…

September 16, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , | 2 Comments

Putin and Netanyahu: The World’s Most Powerful President Meets the World’s Most Powerful Liar

By Adam Garrie | Global Research | August 28, 2017

There is no doubt that Vladimir Putin is the world’s most powerful President. By comparison, while China’s Xi Jinping is highly powerful and intelligent, China’s leadership retains a collective element while in Russia, Vladimir Putin maintains an unwritten but obvious veto power over all major decisions. In the United States, the very idea that Donald Trump is an all-powerful President is now laughable even to most Americans, including those who support Donald Trump.

By the same extrapolation it is abundantly clear that Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli leader is the world’s most powerful liar. His power comes from the fact that he is in charge of the highest portion of weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East, including nuclear weapons.

His dishonesty is immediately revealed by his statements about Iran. When speaking in front of the Russian President, Netanyahu said, “… where the defeated Islamic State (Daesh) group vanishes, Iran is stepping in”.

This statement is disingenuous on many levels. First of all, Netanyahu stated to Putin that he felt that Iran is a danger and secondly, that this danger is tantamount to that of Daesh.

Iran has not invaded a country in its modern history and there is no evidence to indicate that this will change. By contrast, Israel occupies Syria and Palestine and formerly occupied Lebanon and Egypt. During the course of Syria’s struggle against Takfiri terrorism, Israel repeatedly bombed Syria illegally. Inversely, Iran’s presence in Syria, like that of Russia, is legal according to international law as it is at the behest of the Syrian government.

Secondly, to equate a state like Iran with Daesh is preposterous. Iran is first of all far more powerful than Daesh has ever been. Daesh is a terrorist group which is quickly crumbling in both Syria and Iraq. Iran is a large state with a professional and highly trained armed forces.

Iran however, uses its military and political influence to fight Takfiri terrorism whose methods, and sinister ideology is anathema to the Iranian Constitution and to the values of the Islamic Revolution.

If one is even slightly interested in fighting Daesh, it logical to thank Iran for its valiant efforts against the wicked group which along with Russia are the only two major non-Arab countries which are combatting a group which has set up base across the Arab world.

During his meeting with Vladimir Putin, Netanyahu also said, “Iran is already well on its way to controlling Iraq, Yemen and to a large extent is already in practice in control of Lebanon”.

This again is a lie. Iran controls Iran and no one else. Iran does not have puppet states in the region in the way that America has had and continues to have puppet states and client states throughout the world. What Iran does have and what it has increasingly, is respect in the Arab world. Iranian forces are in Syria because the Syrian government asked for their assistance in fighting Takfiri terrorism and Iran agreed. Russia finds itself in the same position.

Iran has many supporters and admirers in Baghdad and Iran has helped train Iraqi volunteer units which are fighting and winning the battle against Daesh in Iraq. In Lebanon, Hezbollah is of course a pro-Iranian political party, one which holds two Cabinet level ministers in the Lebanese government. Hezbollah’s military aims are defensive. Their primary goal is to prevent further occupations of Lebanon by Israel. Hezbollah also has worked with the Syrian government to fight Daesh and al-Qaeda.

Israel is a country that has fought wars with all of its neighbours and has occupied most of them. Iran by contrast has occupied none of its neighbours but in the 1980s was the victim of a war that Iraq started with western support. The two situations are objectively incomparable.

One does not have to be ‘pro-Iranian’ to realise this fact. It is a fact that the world acknowledges, including elements of the Arab world which are hostile to Iran.

Vladimir Putin wisely refrained from responding to Netanyahu’s anti-Iranian tirade. The nature of modern Russian diplomacy is to quietly execute its objectives without needlessly entering into arguments with extremists.

Previously, when Netanyahu told historical untruths about Iran, Vladimir Putin did intervene, telling Netanyahu that it is best to focus on modern events rather than ancient history.

Israel’s anti-Iranian rhetoric is increasingly unpopular in the wider world. Even in Europe, most companies and many countries would rather do business with Iran rather than enter into an ideological struggle on Israel’s terms.

Only the United States, Saudi Arabia and Saudi’s client states share Israel’s stance about Iran and none of the Arab countries have the ability or in reality the nerve to start a war with Iran that they would clearly not win.

The great pity is not that Netanyahu continues to tell provocative lies about Iran and the wider region, the pity and the danger is that anyone could still believe him. Iran does not threaten any nation with aggressive war, but if Netanyahu’s impassioned rhetoric foments a war, Iran will defend itself. Those interested in peace ought to ignore Netanyahu and work instead for the important cause of greater peace, cooperation and dialogue, not just in the Middle East but in the wider world.

Copyright © Adam Garrie, Global Research, 2017

August 28, 2017 Posted by | Deception | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Trump plans to hold summit with Putin in Reykjavik – report

RT | January 15, 2017

US President-Elect Donald Trump has told British officials that he wants to hold a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Reykjavik, Iceland, the Sunday Times reported.

The meeting with Vladimir Putin is set to become Donald Trump’s first foreign trip, and the US leader will start working on an agreement limiting nuclear arms within a “reset” in US-Russian relations, according to the newspaper.

Sources close to the Russian Embassy in London said to The Sunday Times that Moscow would agree to a summit between Putin and Trump.

The meeting would come just over 30 years since the historic summit on October 11-12, 1986, between Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev, the second in a series of meetings that relaunched the relationship between the United States and the Soviet Union.

The latest report comes just a day after Trump expressed openness to lifting the sanctions against Russia “under certain conditions.”

In an hour-long interview with the Wall Street Journal on Friday, Trump said he wants to keep the sanctions that the Obama administration recently imposed on Russia “at least for a period of time.”

However, Trump added that he would consider lifting the restrictions, depending on how helpful the Russians are in the fight against terrorism, as well as assisting with other goals that he feels are key to the US.

January 14, 2017 Posted by | Economics, Militarism | , , , | 1 Comment

False Prophets and False News: Time for New Beginnings

By James Petras :: December 30, 2016

Introduction: There are deep flaws in the blogs, media reports, and official statements, which purport to describe world historic events and changes.

These so-called ‘up-to-date’ reports of major world events undergo repeated revisions in hours, days or weeks as the story is being ‘played out’. What might start out as a ’scoop’ for the upwardly mobile journalist is transformed into a by-word for a ‘critical blogger’ rewriting mainstream reports by simply substituting negatives for pluses (or vice versa).

‘Immediacy’ trumps historical context and structural understanding. Protagonist or antagonists of the moment are demonized, slandered and scandalized, or lauded, praised and iconized.

The practice of deep falsification involves magnifying transient trivia and glossing over world-historic change. The false prophets substitute superficiality for deep understanding.

Soon after proclaiming a ‘major systemic transformation’, which fails to occur, a series of modifications or reversals take over, and the initial ‘great prophesy’ is forgotten – as if the readers of news were afflicted with an epidemic of dementia.

Most political parties, left, right and center, have their own unchanging warped world view to frame everyday minutiae.

For example, on the Left, it is the ‘imminent collapse of capitalism’ or the ‘perpetual stagnation of the capitalist state’, ‘the collapse of democracy’ or ‘the emergence of fascism’. In the absence of any real empirical or historical findings to support their hypotheses, they add escape clauses about ‘tendencies’.

The Center has its own historic narrative, which includes ‘threats from the Left and Right’, and the ‘dangers posed by populists to democratic values’. They cite the overwhelming responsibility to ‘defend Western values’ everywhere, from threats, past, present and future… and especially from independent nations, like Russia, China, Venezuela, Iran and other ‘emerging’ powers, as a pretext to escalate militarism and to bolster support for vassal states.

The Center repeatedly point to the ‘resilience of Western liberal democratic institutions’ even as police state edicts are dictated to counter dissenting voices, while false prophets predict that China’s robust economy is on the verge of collapse; that democratic Russia is an unstable autocracy; and that the Ukraine is an emerging democracy – while its ‘Right Sector’ and ‘Azov Battalions’ runs amok amidst a kleptocratic, neo-fascist regime.

The Right frames its world-historic ideology by stressing the need to (1) revive the Cold War to counter the US global decline; (2) confront the world-wide wave of ‘populism’ threatening ‘liberal’ democracies; (3) portray Brexit as a sign of the European Union’s collapse; (4) equate Trump’s victory with the rise of fascism in the US; (5) emphasize the ascent of bigotry, racism and anti-Semitism, based on the result of a single election ; (6) denounce Leftist ‘conspiracy’ writers who ‘falsely’ blame rising class inequalities to free-market monopolies; and (7) explain that cuts in social expenditures, tax cuts to big capital, increased work hours and decreased pensions are ultimately rewarding the masses.

These mega- narratives lead ‘prophetic academics’ to insist on their infallible insight into the future direction of the world economy, global politics and class relations.

False prophets maintain a veneer of authenticity, by presenting the future in unspecified, ambiguous, general and distant terms, to allow for any or all outcomes – like professional fortune tellers.

Academic and media prophets are enveloped in a mystique of expertise, which allows them to rehash yesterday’s news as deep strategic insights.

False Prophets: Trump

Contrary to the wailings of the Right, Center and Left, Donald Trump is not a fascist, or a nationalist or a populist. An objective assessment of his most recent policies and cabinet appointments show that he is a free-market politician with a propensity to appoint militarists to security positions.

Trump’s populist demagogy most closely resembles President Obama – although the appeal is to a different audience. Trump speaks to impoverished, displaced, skilled workers in the rust belt with campaign promises of a renaissance in manufacturing, upscale suburbanites, and downwardly mobile working women, while appointing billionaire bankers and global business executives to run the economy and set policy. Obama appealed to poor minorities, middle class urbanites and the same business elite.

Like Obama, Trump is an imperialist committed to protecting and projecting US global power. He differs from Obama in emphasis. Obama and his predecessors pursued a primarily military-driven imperialism while Trump will shift the emphasis to economic imperialism.

Trump’s ‘double discourse’, of talking to the masses during the campaign while working for the elite once in office, reflects a long-standing American Presidential tradition.

Editorial writers’ descriptions of Donald Trump lack historical and empirical depth.

Powerful systemic constraints define the rate and scope of any long-term, large-scale changes that Trump might propose. Trump can only introduce minor incremental changes in the behavior of the biggest banks and five hundred most powerful global multi-nationals. Trump might re-negotiate around the edges of some bilateral trade agreements, but he cannot convert the US into a closed self-sufficient economy.

Contrary to the ‘end of the world’ hysteria, promoted by the mass media, Trump has never made any pact with white racists and anti-Semites. There are no major Jewish organizations currently engaged in a struggle against Trump’s ‘fascist hordes’. The KKK is not preparing to burn Goldman Sachs. Since Trump’s election the stock market has jump over a thousand points. Like all of his predecessors from both parties, Trump appointed prominent Jews to key economic and policy positions, including Treasury Secretary. Many editorialists, who rely on selected excerpts of campaign rhetoric and gossip, have presented an unrealistic picture of the trajectory of the US state and economy.

False Prophets: China

The US prophets and self-described ‘experts’ describe China in inflated terms of either its impending doom or its relentless drive toward world supremacy. They rely on the minutiae of the moment or distorted extrapolations, uncertainties and contingent systemic changes. Rigorous analytical accounts are in short supply.

China, according to the free-market financial prophets of doom, suffers from a declining growth rate, shrinking work force, massive capital flight, deep-seated corruption and an impending intra-elite war. According to the prophets of doom, this sets the stage for an economic collapse and a military confrontation with the US empire.

Many of these pronouncements are easily dismissed. For the last 30 years, China’s economy has exceeded 6% and it is steadily developing its high technological work force and scientific innovations. China’s emphasis is on diversifying its production and consumption to domestic and overseas markets. The challenge of its aging work force is met by the increasing development of robotics and computerized productive systems.

China has applied capital controls and limits on capital flight. The national campaign against corruption and speculation in real estate has led to the arrest of over 200,000 officials and executives for fraud, bribery and money laundering via overseas banks.

In other words, the false prophets, parading about as ‘China experts’, have consistently made nonsensical predictions of doom and collapse. Faced with factual refutations, they merely repeat and recycle their prophecies by projecting longer time frames, up to infinity, for the coming of the inevitable catastrophe.

On the other hand, some progressive writers peddle prophesies of China’s endless progress predicting its inevitable emergence as a supreme global power. They convert China’s 30-year pattern of economic growth into a formula guaranteeing ‘harmonious development’, which they claim is based on China’s correct handling of emerging challenges and contradictions. Their predictions of stable future growth assume ever-expanding markets while ignoring the threat of military confrontations with rival imperial powers.

China’s prophets of global power ignore contingencies: Skilled and innovative workers, who are necessary for economic growth, have their own vision of the social structure in which they play a leading role in advancing society.

While robots can substitute for human labor power, it is worker knowledge and initiative that design, produce and adjust the robotic manufacturing system.

Harmony, free markets and mutually beneficial trade alliances are relations that are always changing; only interests remain constant. As China moves from investing in commodities to manufacturing and technology, customers can turn into competitors.

As China emerges as a global power, the outflow of capital and arms and technology increases, and the risks of global rivalry and domestic instability, challenging the Chinese ruling class likewise increase.

Prophecies or predictions depend on (1) the stability of incremental changes in the structure of power; (2) the uncertainty of elite outcomes in world markets and (3) the volatility of domestic class relations.

False Prophets: Latin America

Latin America is almost universally regarded as unstable – a region, where revolutions and counter-revolutions alternate, and electoral regimes rise and fall among neo-liberal, populist and nationalist leaders.

The long-term reality is actually quite different. Latin America has been one of global capitalism’s most stable regions. With few exceptions, property-ownership has remained stable for decades, with entrenched oligarchical elite families enjoying wealth, multiple-luxury properties throughout the world and their own perpetuation.

Electoral regimes may frequently change but the underlying state structures endure for decades. Bureaucratic, military and financial institutions set the margins of change. Neo-liberal, post-neo-liberal and anti-neo-liberal policies come and go, but large-scale mining, export agricultural and banking structures ultimately set the conditions for the growth of economies and demise of governments.

There is a tendency for some academic prophets and writers to use metaphors from astronomy and geology to divide the world. They describe a ‘world-system’ composed of ‘a core, a semi-periphery and a periphery’. Adding and subtracting, multiplying and dividing quantities of productive resources, the false prophets solemnly predict how the entire world system will function ‘ad infinitum’.

While data, derived from observations in space, provide scientists with insights into the movements of distant galaxies and the fate of planets, extrapolation to socio-economic and political ‘bodies’ is risky.

On the real planet Earth, the so-called ‘periphery’ of the ‘world system’ subsumes countries, economies, social structures, states and inter-state relations with entirely distinct composition, behavior and histories. Cuba, a ‘peripheral state’, differs in every respect from Haiti, Guatemala and scores of other likewise categorized nations. And among the ‘core’ countries, the US invades, occupies and plunders dozens of countries every decade, while China engages in ‘trade’. Iran, among the ’semi-peripherals’, has not invaded any neighbor for two centuries, while Israel, a fellow ‘semi-peripheral’, has ravaged a dozen countries in the past 50 years.

False Prophets: Russia

Western prophets on the right and left predicted that the break-up of the USSR would augur a period of harmony, democracy and widespread prosperity. The true believers claimed ‘anything was better than Stalinism’ while ignoring the fact that Stalin was dead for a half-century.

Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev oversaw the transformation of the USSR’s allied nations into pillaged satellites of the Western imperial powers. He blindly accepted US Presidents Bush and Ronald Reagan’s promises that the US would not expand NATO and would not transform the newly emerging post-Soviet nations into military bases. What emerged was a crippled and encircled Russia, which had been converted into a Beggar-State of oligarchs and swindlers who seized over a trillion dollars of public property, wealth, land and resources in less than ten years. Gangsters murdered their way into public office through US-manipulated sham elections, celebrated by the Western press. Living standards for millions of post-Soviet citizens collapsed, resulting in the greatest decline of life expectancy, health, culture, science and education in peacetime history.

Contrary to the predictions of Western prophets Russia rebuilt its state and economy. The new political leadership, headed by Vladimir Putin, replaced the dipsomaniac puppet President and mobsters favored by Washington. Living and health standards have vastly improved; production, agriculture, exports, national security, science and culture have recovered.

The angry false prophets, then promoted a new pseudo-scientific assertion that the re-emergence of the Russian state and its recovering economy led inexorably to autocratic rule by a former KGB official, who violated ‘Western values’ by…. jailing swindler billionaires and self-made oil mobsters and re-appropriating vital national assets.

Western editorialists ceaselessly denounce the popularly elected President Putin for his crime… of refuting the bankruptcy of their prophecies.

Despite reams of reports by the ‘experts’, despite their wide circulation in the mass media and their citations by top Western officials, the Russian state and economy, just like the Chinese, are not on the verge of collapse nor are they declining or facing popular revolts.

False Prophets: The Left

The shallow, self-serving Left prophets of progressive governments in Latin America, as well as admirers of Putin’s Russia and Xi Jinping’s China, fail to recognize the structural, historical and class constraints that determine and limit policies.

First and foremost, they fail to recognize the socio-economic continuities within these states. In all three regions, elites and oligarchs continue to control the commanding heights of the economies, despite occasional expropriations and sporadic reforms.

Secondly, even the most ‘progressive’ regimes rely on Western markets and investors limiting their long-term growth.

Thirdly, the long-term dependence on extractive exports, global demand and fragile mono-culture economies weakens the long-term stability of Russia and Latin America.

The absence of a socialist democratic alternative to the brutal capitalist restoration in China undermines the optimistic perspective of progressive prophets.

Conclusion

The debate among experts, regarding the rise or decline of the Imperial West or the progressive forces in China, Russia and Latin America, fails to consider their ‘hidden resources and liabilities’. These include the untapped scientific discoveries, the failure to develop alternative resources and innovations, as well as the ongoing repression of skilled workers. The Western prophets underestimate how the reliance on the paper economy has squandered immense social and productive value.

The ongoing cultural deformations, perversions and falsifications of information and analysis at the behest of established power centers, has clouded any real understanding of everyday life and greatly reduced our chances for a future without barbaric wars and social exploitation.

Culture is an everyday phenomenon determining how economies and states, rulers and ruled see the world, exercise power or are forced to submit.

We have witnessed the spread of cultural squalor into language and life, with only an occasional respite, when people overcome their everyday stupor and create a momentary burst of creative political, economic, social and cultural energy, which can lead to transformations.

Humdrum incremental changes, left and right, and the reality of continuities, limit and ultimately reverse social reforms and corrupt language to serve the ruling powers. We must move forward against the flatulence of everyday life by rejecting the false prophets and by writing, speaking and acting against crackpot sages. Our progress toward a new order must be firmly rooted in our everyday struggles writ large.

January 2, 2017 Posted by | Economics, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular | , , , | 3 Comments

Putin: Russia will not expel anyone in response to US sanctions

RT | December 30, 2016

The Russian president has rejected a suggestion of the foreign ministry to expel 35 American diplomats in response to a similar move by the US. He said Obama’s act was designed to provoke a reaction, but Russia would not take the bait.

“We reserve the right to retaliate, but we will not sink to the level of this irresponsible ‘kitchen’ diplomacy. We will take further moves on restoring Russian-American relations based on the policies that the administration of President-elect Donald Trump adopts,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a statement published by the Kremlin website.

Putin said that, unlike the Obama administration, Russia will not target foreign diplomats and their families days before New Year’s celebrations.

“We will not forbid families and children from spending the New Year’s holidays at the places they are used to. Moreover, I invite the children of all American diplomats with accreditation in Russia to New Year’s and Christmas festivities in the Kremlin,” the Russian president said.

Putin said he regretted that US President Barack Obama is ending his term “in such a way,” but that he extended his New Year’s congratulations to the outgoing US president and his family nevertheless.

“I congratulate President-elect Donald Trump and the entire American people!” he concluded.

The Kremlin said it will send a government plane to the US to evacuate the expelled diplomats and their family members. Earlier, there were reports that the diplomats were having problems buying tickets on such short notice, with airlines already booked by New Year’s travelers.

Earlier, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov suggested that Russia respond to the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats from the US by expelling 35 American diplomats from Russia. Similarly, the eviction of a Russian diplomatic staff from two vacation houses in the US would be mirrored by a similar eviction of Americans in Russia.

President Obama targeted Russian diplomats as a part of wider sanctions against Russian, which he justified by the alleged interference by the Russian government in the November presidential election in the US. Moscow denies the allegations.

The US claimed that the vacation houses had been used for espionage. Russia insists that they were used by the diplomatic staff to spend holidays with their families.

Read more:

Russian FM proposes expulsion of 35 US diplomats in sanctions tit-for-tat

December 30, 2016 Posted by | Progressive Hypocrite | , , , | 1 Comment

Obama rips open the cauterised Russian wound

By M K Bhadrakumar | Indian Punchline | December 18, 2016

In the entire chronicle of Russian-American relations since Joseph Stalin, it is difficult to recollect an instance when a US President held a Kremlin leader personally responsible for an outrageous criminal act. But then, the alleged Russian hacking of the Democratic National Committee, the formal governing body of the Democratic Party in the US has no precedent.

The alleged Russian hacking was the main topic of President Barack Obama’s press conference held in the White House in Washington on Friday. Obama accused that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the hacking:

  • I’d make a larger point, which is, not much happens in Russia without Vladimir Putin. This is a pretty hierarchical operation… I’ll confirm that this (hacking) was at the highest levels of the Russian government. And I will let you make that determination as to whether there are high-level Russian officials who go off rogue and decide to tamper with the U.S. election process without Vladimir Putin knowing about it.

Obama’s lengthy remarks at the hour-long press conference hinted strongly that the US intelligence is in possession of hard evidence to back up the accusation. Elsewhere, Obama said or signalled:

  • In a conversation on the sidelines of the G-20 in Hangzhou in September, he did plain-speaking with Putin and bluntly demanded an end to the hacking. Obama threatened that otherwise there’d be “some serious consequences.” Putin got the message; Russian hackers backed off.
  • However, the damage was done because Moscow had by then already passed on the stuff to WikiLeaks to stir up controversies in the US election campaign.
  • Washington will retaliate at a time and manner of choosing, not all of which may show up in public domain but the Kremlin will be made to understand that there is a price to pay.
  • Obama defended the legitimacy of Donald Trump’s election victory as such – although “I (Obama) don’t think she (Hillary Clinton) was treated fairly during the election. I think the coverage of her and the issues was troubling.”

What are the implications? One, the US intelligence possesses explosive materials on the Kremlin leadership. Two, Obama thoroughly disapproves of Trump’s intention to accommodate Russia (and Putin). He just stopped short of inciting the Republicans to mutiny. (“Over a third of Republican voters approve of Vladimir Putin, the former head of the KGB. Ronald Reagan would roll over in his grave.”) The intention is to create a bipartisan resistance to Trump’s plans to improve relations with Russia.

However, the intriguing part will be Obama’s personal attack on Putin. It’s well-known that Obama detests Putin. But then, there is more to it. Obama seems to believe Putin did plot Trump’s victory.

To my mind, Obama aims to hit back by fatally wounding Putin in the Byzantine world of Kremlin power-play. The thesis of mainstream American pundits is that the Kremlin power cliques see Putin as their best frontman and so long as he is useful, he retains his position, but the moment he becomes a liability, the matrix can change and he becomes expendable. This is one thing.

In the US assessment, again, Russian elites hanker for normal ties with the western world where they own expensive properties, keep fat bank accounts, educate their children, go for shopping or enjoy holidays. They are restive that Russia is being kept under quarantine by the West. They count on Putin to get sanctions removed. Now, when the US president names Putin in a criminal act, his image gets damaged irreparably.

Obama’s calculation could be that a) under immense psychological pressure, Putin himself may not seek another six-year term in the election in early 2018, or, b) if Putin becomes a ‘burnt-out case’, Russian elites in their quest to improve relations with the West, may have no more use for him.

Either way, something sinister has begun. Obama fired the salvo to take out Putin just before he himself walks into the sunset. But there is much more to come in this epic story. The 32 days before Trump is sworn in, will be a season for media leaks in America. Read the transcript of Obama’s remarks here.

December 18, 2016 Posted by | Progressive Hypocrite, Timeless or most popular | , , | 1 Comment

Russia Destroys The Greater Israel Dream

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Plato’s Guns | October 19, 2015

The grand plan was going swimmingly. The concept of endless wars for Greater Israel was working and producing impressive results. Opportunistically, through aggravation of war after war, chunk by chunk of Arab land was usurped and the map of Greater Israel was slowly materializing. No matter the unstable chaos surrounding the State of Israel for the past seven decades, and no matter the undying Palestinian resistance and the violent Intifadas that erupted internally, the Zionist dream of Greater Israel remained consistently intact and was progressing unabated and unchallenged by anyone.

But dreams, by their diaphanous nature are easily interruptible – can easily turn into sudden nightmares. Indeed, dreams do, in the blink of an eye, simply end.

Nobody expected the Zionist dream to come to a sudden halt like this. Nobody. Nobody expected Russia, literally in the blink of an eye, to suddenly assert itself militarily in the Levant and in the process turn the Zionist dream into a geopolitical and existential nightmare. No further territorial expansions are even remotely possible now with Russia’s military presence in the Levant. The Russian army is in the Levant to stay and the Israelis know it. In the Zionist universe, it’s as if a mighty big-footed contender had suddenly appeared in the dream and instantly stepped on the Greater Israel map like it was a castle made of sand.

Russia is not a declared enemy of Israel. Russia did not squelch The Greater Israel dream on purpose. The destruction of the Zionist dream is the result of an unintended consequence that purely serves the regional and global interests of Russia. Happenstance that the Zionist dream was in the way of Russian ambitions, that’s all. Dog eat dog world.

But what are Russia’s interests in lassoing the Levant?

Well, first, Putin intends to re-fulfill the old Russian dream of establishing sizable military foundations and bases in the ‘warm waters’ of the world, in the Mediterranean, to be more precise, in order to pivot and project power westwards with practical ease. And also, to use Mediterranean naval bases as a first line of defense against a Western creep towards its own territory. Russia’s growing military presence in Syria is a matter of “national security”, Putin has declared several times over. Establishing multiple bases in the Mediterranean has not been possible for Russia to do since the 1967 Arab-Israeli war when it lost the Middle East chess game to America, symbolized by Egypt, a major Soviet client at the time having its Soviet military hardware devastated by Israeli-operated, made-in-USA weaponry. Russia today considers its growing presence in Syria to be a most vital geopolitical maneuver for re-establishing a seat of power again in the Middle East, in tandem with its progress into future Superpowerdom. In the current uncontrollable chaos of the Levant, this is an ambition that Russia must begin implementing immediately, lest the region falls dangerously under ISIS and Zioconism, making it thus harder for Russia’s old dream to be realized.

Secondly, Putin sees the cloth of American Empire as fast fading, especially in the Middle East, and he’s taking advantage of this: putting forth a challenging proposition to the American Emperor. Yes, Vladimir Putin, president of Russia, a man considered to be a cold-blooded realist, is aware of America’s weaknesses, but he’s also aware of its current strengths and he is in Syria as a power salesman – he’s in Syria to make a deal with Empire Americana. Respectfully, but firmly, he is pitching to Empire: ‘Look, you remain supremely powerful, but you are hemorrhaging in the Middle East and the situation is now critical. You cannot afford a new large-scale war in the Middle East that may or may not reassert your hold on the region; and you have lost all your proxy wars there as well – there are no more black-clad joker cards in your deck. You cannot continue on this disadvantageous path, you cannot stand still either and you also cannot withdraw from the region. All these are strategically inferior options and will not stop the bleeding of your powers. The only way out is through pragmatism. The only remedy is to share control of the Middle East with us, Russians. We have together shared power in the Middle East under the shadow of the Cold War and yes it created dangers and complexities for both our countries in the past. But today is different: there is no official Cold War between us and so our new partnership can only serve to strengthen us both’. This, dear reader is Russia’s diplomatic speak, received with quiet relief by the White House and cussed and scorned by the Ziocons in DC. Simplified, Putin is in Syria and his realist message to America is: ‘Share the Middle East with us now or we both fall in the future’. And it looks like Obama has quietly taken heed, in the interest of Empire and realism and not out of cowardice or submission to Putin. Obama’s problem is that although he begrudgingly agrees with Putin’s analysis and remedy, he cannot be seen to be supporting it in public because the Neocons would immediately set the dogs of treason on him, bogging him down with political obtrusion and smear campaigns in his last 15 months of power – possibly damaging his party’s winning chances at the next elections.

Thirdly, in my opinion, Russia is in Syria also for the purpose of redressing Russian military image and history. After the devastating defeat of the Soviet Union at the hands of the American-backed Afghani Mujahedeen, and considering the profound nationalism that Russian society feels especially towards its military institutions, it behooves any modern Russian leader thus to conceive and create a military victory against a modern version of the same old enemy who had previously defeated them – a military morale-booster both for the Russian populations and for the history books. A utilization of the sentiments of the ‘comeback kid’ for mass consumption so as to boost levels of nation devotion. Russia, being the largest nation in the world, landmass-wise, it has to regularly make grand spectacles and gestures in the name of national unity enhancement. Killing Takfiri terrorists in Syria, nay smashing them to smithereens with Russian Air Power is an opportune event to balance out and positively update Russian history books.

Yes, the Russian military buildup in Syria, especially in marine and air power, now looks to be, relatively speaking, permanent. And this is what is causing Israel and its Ziocon friends in Washington sleepless nights and hectic, nefarious group-brainstorming sessions. They know that the dream of a Greater Israel cannot be realized with Russia dominating the skies and waters of the Levant. This is the current and silent inescapable reality. This is the wall that suddenly sprung up and instantly separated Zionists from their beloved Greater Israel dream. Because of a ‘wall’, the dream is now impossible.

Some would call this, poetic justice.

The ‘dream destroyed’ being the current unspoken reality, Israel is left with no expedient and transforming choices. It cannot go to direct war with a more powerful Russia and win back domination over Levant skies and waters. It couldn’t even defeat Hezbollah who lack any form of Air Power back in 2006. And more frustratingly for Israel, it cannot blackmail, coerce or buy President Putin either. Moreover, presently under the leadership of Obama, it is clear that America is not prepared to go to direct war with any nation, let alone Russia, on behalf of Israel. The current architects of expansionist Zionism are at a complete and utter loss to recognize all these chokehold factors – blood is draining from their faces. No more meetings over what Arab country to genocide next so as to steal more land and resources, the issue now is not when and how the Zionist dream can be finally fulfilled, but how to safely bring the corpse-dream back from the dead without anyone noticing.

Alas, there are no clever Zionist ideas on the architects’ table. They are truly and absolutely in utter speechless shock.

And what compounds this hectic catatonia that the Zionist Sensei are currently experiencing is the fact that they know that Israel’s global credibility is at its lowest ever, and that sooner or later, the international community – seeing Israel’s geopolitical weakness – will start pressing hard, even imposing the 2-State solution on Israel, based on the 1967 borders. This is the double nail in the Greater Israel dream coffin. Not only will Israel be unable to expand territory, but it will also be forced into giving up territory currently under its (illegal) control. Something that the Israeli public are psychologically not prepared for, nor is there any political will in the Israeli halls of power to do so either.

Observations of the behaviorism of Zionists tell us that what they cannot change, they usually endeavor to spoil. And the only thing they are still capable of doing is spoiling it for Arabs. They will undoubtedly attempt to expand the current regional conflicts into another one hundred years of Arab on Arab wars. This is a given – they breathe to spoil life for their Arab neighbors. And we also observe that when Zionists are not willing or able to go to war, they usually endeavor to send other capable and willing nations to war on their behalf. But as noted a few passages above, this is currently impossible under the Obama administration. The dream of Greater Israel remains smashed.

What to do then? What is the ultimate solution? Would Israel prefer that America directly and militarily confront Russia in the Levant? I call it a yes. Even at the cost of causing World War Three? Yes. Even at the risk of igniting a nuclear war? Yes.

Yes, yes, and a triple yes. The global Zionist congress pathology shows every indication of this. ‘The tribe above all’ is their core belief. They are Masadian-ISISians in suits with basements full of nukes. Their narcissistic intentions are always clear – their motives and maneuvers are never to be trusted.

We are currently at a very serious and sobering point in the fast-evolving dramas taking place in the Levant and the Middle East at large. Everyone concerned is standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the unknown. This alignment of overwhelming unknowns is rare in history. The geopolitical stress and distress levels – despite the equalizing Russian presence in the Levant – remain excruciatingly high for all parties concerned. All actors have so much to lose with a single wrong move. A cluster of unknowns is forcing everyone into extreme caution. Hesitant steps are made then quickly unmade. If you were to privately ask Obama or Putin what would happen to the world the day after a war between their two nations ignites, they would both be likely to look you somberly in the eye and say, ‘I don’t know’.

The unknown is upon us and we are upon the unknown.

For now, Zionist masterminds plan on keeping the death of the dream of Greater Israel a secret, in the hope that the next American president would be more malleable and more reactionary than Obama. They will be quietly biding their time and hoping that the next President of America would be more Zionist that Theodore Herzl. More ideologically violent than ISIS and Tarantino. Hoping against all hope that the tiny state of Israel would survive a Word War Three catastrophe with little damage inside its boundaries. Hoping against all hope that the Arab world surrounding Israel, all of it would literally be bombed back into the stone ages, while Israel continues to be the hi-tech bride of the Middle East. Hoping against all hope that Russia would again be defeated by America in the Middle East – just so that Israel can again dominate the skies and waters of the Levant, allowing it thus to revive the corpse of the Greater Israel project. Hoping against all hope that igniting World War Three would actually solve all of Israel’s problems.

A touch fantastical? Maybe not.

This is what happens when tribal madmen dream.

October 20, 2015 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Putin Trumps Obama at the U.N.

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By Margaret Kimberley | Black Agenda Report | September 30, 2015

If the peevish expression on Barack Obama’s face was any indication, Vladimir Putin is a force in the world who cannot be ignored. Ever since Russia annexed Crimea in response to the United States – and NATO – backed coup in Ukraine, Obama and the corporate media have falsely declared that Putin is isolated from the rest of the world. They claim he is a monster, a despot and an irrelevance on the world stage.

While the G8 member nations turned themselves into the G7 in order to snub Russia, president Putin was making friends elsewhere. He may have been isolated from the United States and its clique, but not from China and the other BRICS nations or Syria or Iran or Iraq. While western nations use the Islamic State (ISIS) as a ruse to exact regime change in Syria, Putin has formed an alliance to carry out the task of eradicating that danger which was created by western intervention.

Presidents Obama and Putin both made their respective cases before the United Nations General Assembly at its annual meeting. Obama’s speech was an apologia for imperialism and American aggression. He repeated the lies which no one except uninformed Americans believe. If he calls a leader a tyrant he claims the right to destroy a nation and kill and displace its people. Despite the living hell that the United States made out of Libya, Obama continues to defend his crime. He blandly adds that “our coalition could have and should have done more to fill a vacuum left behind.” Apparently he hopes that no one is paying attention to the horrors inflicted on Libya or the ripple effect which created numerous other humanitarian crises.

Not content to defend the indefensible, the president made it clear that the Obama doctrine of regime change and terror is alive and well. “I lead the strongest military that the world has ever known, and I will never hesitate to protect my country or our allies, unilaterally and by force where necessary.”

In contrast, the man labeled a dictator acknowledged the importance of respecting every nation’s sovereignty. “Rather than bringing about reforms, an aggressive foreign interference has resulted in a brazen destruction of national institutions and life itself. Instead of the triumph of democracy and progress, we got violence, poverty and social disaster. Nobody cares a bit about human rights, including the right to life.” Making good use of his time in the spotlight, he made clear that he wasn’t fooled or cowed by the United States. “I cannot help asking those who have caused the situation, do you realize now what you’ve done? But I am afraid no one is going to answer that. Indeed, policies based on self-conceit and belief in one’s exceptionality and impunity have never been abandoned.”

Obviously Putin has self-interest in supporting his allies in Syria and for fighting ISIS. He acknowledged that his country is at risk from some of its own citizens who have sworn an allegiance to that group. Nonetheless, it is important that at least one nation in the world is capable of standing up to American state sponsored destruction and is willing to take action in that effort. Before the United Nations proceedings took place, Russia announced that it would share intelligence with Iran, Iraq and Syria in order to combat ISIS. If the United States were true to its word, that alliance would be welcomed instead of scorned.

Not since the late Hugo Chavez declared that George W. Bush left a “smell of sulfur” has an American president been so openly confronted at the United Nations. Putin’s presence makes it clear that Obama can no longer expect to carry out his international dirty work without effective opposition.

While the corporate media noted the tense photo opportunity between the two presidents they neglected to mention the real issues behind the bad feelings. At a press conference after his address Putin was asked about French president Hollande’s insistence that Assad leave the Syrian presidency. “I relate to my colleagues the American and French presidents with great respect but they aren’t citizens of Syria and so should not be involved in choosing the leadership of another country.”

That simple statement explains the totality of American enmity towards Russia. The NATO nations claim a right to choose leaders, create and support their own terrorist groups and destroy anyone who doesn’t do what they want. Putin is making a case for non-interference and that makes him persona non grata in the eyes of the supposedly more democratic West.

The world ought to fear pax Americana, not a Russian military presence in Syria. There cannot be true peace and stability unless nations and peoples are left to their own devices. The helping hand of United States democracy is anything but. It is a recipe for disaster and requires forceful opposition. If Russia can be a reliable counterforce the whole world will benefit, even if Barack Obama frowns before the cameras.

Margaret Kimberley  can be reached via e-Mail at Margaret.Kimberley(at)BlackAgendaReport.com.

October 1, 2015 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Progressive Hypocrite | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Putin: Who created ISIS?

September 29, 2015 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, Video | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Putin interview to Charlie Rose in the run-up to his address at the UN General Assembly’s 70th session

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Full text of the interview will be published on September 29.

* * *

CHARLIE ROSE: You will speak to the United Nations in a much-anticipated address on Monday. It will be the first time you have been there in a number of years. What will you say to the UN, to America, to the world?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: Since this interview will be aired prior to my speech, I do not think it reasonable to go into much detail about everything I am going to speak about, but, broadly, I will certainly mention some facts from the history of the United Nations. Now I can already tell you that the decision to establish the United Nations was taken in our country at the Yalta Conference. It was in the Soviet Union that this decision was made. The Soviet Union, and Russia as the successor state to the Soviet Union, is a founding member state of the United Nations and a permanent member of its Security Council.

Of course, I will have to say a few words about the present day, about the evolving international situation, about the fact that the United Nations remains the sole universal international organisation designed to maintain global peace. And in this sense it has no alternative today. It is also apparent that it should adapt to the ever-changing world, which we discuss all the time: how it should evolve and at what rate, which components should undergo qualitative changes. Of course, I will have to or rather should use this international platform to explain Russia’s vision of today’s international relations, as well as the future of this organisation and the global community.

CHARLIE ROSE: We are expecting you to speak about the threat of the Islamic State and your presence in Syria that is related to that. What is the purpose of your presence in Syria and how does that relate to the challenge of ISIS?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: I believe, I am pretty certain that virtually everyone speaking from the United Nations platform is going to talk about the fight, about the need to fight terrorism, and I cannot avoid this issue, either. This is quite understandable because it is a serious common threat to all of us; it is a common challenge to all of us. Today, terrorism threatens a great number of states, a great number of people – hundreds of thousands, millions of people suffer from its criminal activity. And we all face the task of joining our efforts in the fight against this common evil.

Concerning our, as you put it, presence in Syria, as of today it has taken the form of weapons supplies to the Syrian government, personnel training and humanitarian aid to the Syrian people. We act based on the United Nations Charter, i.e. the fundamental principles of modern international law, according to which this or that type of aid, including military assistance, can and must be provided exclusively to legitimate government of one country or another, upon its consent or request, or upon the decision of the United Nations Security Council. In this particular case, we act based on the request from the Syrian government to provide military and technical assistance, which we deliver under entirely legal international contracts.

CHARLIE ROSE: The Secretary of State John Kerry said that the United States welcomed your assistance in the fight against the Islamic State. Others have taken note of the fact that these are combat planes and manpad systems that are being used against the conventional army, not extremists.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: There is only one regular army there. That is the army of Syrian President al-Assad. And he is confronted with what some of our international partners interpret as an opposition. In reality, al-Assad’s army is fighting against terrorist organisations. You should know better than me about the hearings that have just taken place in the United States Senate, where the military and Pentagon representatives, if I am not mistaken, reported to the senators about what the United States had done to train the combat part of the opposition forces. The initial aim was to train between 5,000 and 6,000 fighters, and then 12,000 more. It turns out that only 60 of these fighters have been properly trained, and as few as 4 or 5 people actually carry weapons, while the rest of them have deserted with the American weapons to join ISIS. That is the first point.

Secondly, in my opinion, provision of military support to illegal structures runs counter to the principles of modern international law and the United Nations Charter. We have been providing assistance to legitimate government entities only.

In this connection, we have proposed cooperation to the countries in the region, we are trying to establish some kind of coordination framework. I personally informed the President of Turkey, the King of Jordan, as well as the Saudi Arabia of that, we informed the United States too, and Mr Kerry, whom you have mentioned, had an in-depth conversation with our Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on this matter; besides, our military stay in touch and discuss this issue. We would welcome a common platform for collective action against the terrorists.

<…>

CHARLIE ROSE: Are you ready to join forces with the United States against ISIS and is it why you are in Syria? Others believe that it might be part of your goal, that you are trying to save President al-Assad’s administration because they have been losing ground and the war has not been going well for them, and you are there to rescue them.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: That’s right, that’s how it is. We provide assistance to legitimate Syrian authorities. Moreover, I strongly believe that by acting otherwise, acting to destroy the legitimate bodies of power we would create a situation that we are witnessing today in other countries of the region or in other regions of the world, for instance, in Libya, where all state institutions have completely disintegrated.

Unfortunately, we are witnessing a similar situation in Iraq. There is no other way to settle the Syrian conflict other than by strengthening the existing legitimate government agencies, support them in their fight against terrorism and, of course, at the same time encourage them to start a positive dialogue with the “healthy” part of the opposition and launch political transformations.

CHARLIE ROSE: As you know, some coalition partners want al-Assad to go before they can support the government.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: I would like to advise or recommend them to forward this suggestion to the Syrian people. It is only up to the Syrian people living in Syria to determine who, how and based on what principles should rule their country.

CHARLIE ROSE: Do you support what President al-Assad is doing in Syria and what is happening to those Syrians, to those millions of refugees, to hundreds of thousands of people who have been killed and many – by his own force?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: And do you think that those who support the armed opposition and, mainly, terrorist organisations just in order to overthrow al-Assad without thinking of what awaits the country after the complete destruction of state institutions are doing the right thing?

Time and again, with perseverance worthy of a better cause, you are talking about the Syrian army fighting against its people. But take a look at those who control 60 percent of Syrian territory. Where is that civilised opposition? 60 percent of Syria is controlled either by ISIS, Jabhat al-Nusra or other terrorist organisations, organisations that have been recognised as terrorist by the United States, as well as other countries and the UN.

CHARLIE ROSE: Would Russia deploy its combat troops in Syria if it is necessary to defeat ISIS?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: Russia will not take part in any field operations on the territory of Syria or in other states; at least, we do not plan it for now. But we are thinking of how to intensify our work both with President al-Assad and our partners in other countries.

CHARLIE ROSE: As we come back to the problem of many people considering that al-Assad is helping ISIS, that his terrible attitude towards the Syrian people and the use of barrel bombs and other actions are helping ISIS, and if he is removed, the transition period would be better at some point for the purposes of fighting ISIS.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: In secret services’ parlance, I can say that such an assessment is a blatant act by al-Assad’s enemies. It is anti-Syrian propaganda.

CHARLIE ROSE: This wording is very broad, among other things, it can mean new efforts by Russia to take up the leadership role in the Middle East and it can mean that it represents your new strategy. Is it really a new strategy?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: No. There are more than 2,000 militants in Syria from the former Soviet Union. So instead of waiting for them to return back home we should help President al-Assad fight them there, in Syria. This is the main incentive that impels us to help President al-Assad.

In general, we want the situation in the region to stabilize.

CHARLIE ROSE: You are proud of Russia and it means that you want Russia to play a more significant role in the world. This is just one of the examples.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: This is not an end in itself. I am proud of Russia. We have much to be proud of. But we have no obsession that Russia must be a super power in the international arena.

CHARLIE ROSE: But you are a major power because of the nuclear weapons you possess. You are a force to be reckoned with.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: I hope so (laughing), otherwise what are these weapons for?

The Ukrainian issue is a separate huge issue for us, I will tell you why. Ukraine is the closest country to us. We have always said that Ukraine is our sister country and it is true. It is not just a Slavic people, it is the closest people to Russia: we have similar languages, culture, common history, religion etc.

Here is what I believe is completely unacceptable for us. Addressing issues, including controversial ones, as well as domestic issues of the former Soviet Republics through the so-called coloured revolutions, through coups and unconstitutional means of toppling the current government. That is absolutely unacceptable. Our partners in the United States are not trying to hide the fact that they supported those opposed to President Yanukovych.

CHARLIE ROSE: You believe the United States had something to do with the ousting of Yanukovych, when he had to flee to Russia?

VLADIMIR PUTIN.: I know this for sure.

CHARLIE ROSE: How can you know for sure?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: It is very simple. We have thousands of contacts and thousands of connections with people who live in Ukraine. And we know who had meetings and worked with people who overthrew Viktor Yanukovych, as well as when and where they did it; we know the ways the assistance was provided, we know how much they paid them, we know which territories and countries hosted trainings and how it was done, we know who the instructors were. We know everything. Well, actually, our US partners are not keeping it a secret.

CHARLIE ROSE: Do you respect the sovereignty of Ukraine?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: Certainly. However, we would like other countries to respect the sovereignty of other states, including Ukraine, too. Respecting the sovereignty means preventing coups, unconstitutional actions and illegitimate overthrowing of the legitimate government.

CHARLIE ROSE: How does the renewal of the legitimate power take place in your judgment? How will that come about? And what role will Russia play?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: At no time in the past, now or in the future has or will Russia take any part in actions aimed at overthrowing the legitimate government.

CHARLIE ROSE: Did you have to use the military force to accomplish that objective?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: Of course, no.

CHARLIE ROSE: Russia has military presence on the borders with Ukraine, and some argue that there have been Russian troops in Ukraine itself.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: Do you have a military presence in Europe?

CHARLIE ROSE: Yes.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: The U.S. tactical nuclear weapons are in Europe, let us not forget this. Does it mean that the U.S. has occupied Germany or that the U.S. never stopped the occupation after World War II and only transformed the occupation troops into the NATO forces? And if we keep our troops on our territory on the border with some state, you see it is a crime?

CHARLIE ROSE: As you know, you are very much talked about in America.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: Do they not have anything else to do? ( Laughs.)

CHARLIE ROSE: Or maybe they are curious people? Or maybe you are an interesting character, maybe that is what it is? They know that you were the KGB agent, who retired and got into politics. In St. Petersburg you became deputy mayor, then moved to Moscow. And the interesting thing is that they see these images of you, bare-chested man on horseback, and they say there is a man who carefully cultivates his image of strength.

You enjoy the work, you enjoy representing Russia, and I know you have been an intelligence officer. Intelligence officer knows how to read other people; that’s part of the job, right?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: It used to be my job. Now I have a different job and for quite a while already.

CHARLIE ROSE: Someone in Russia told me, “There is no such thing as a former KGB man. Once a KGB man, always a KGB man.”

VLADIMIR PUTIN: You know every stage of your life has an impact on you. Whatever we do, all the knowledge, the experience, they stay with us, we carry them on, use them in one way or another. In this sense, yes, you are right.

CHARLIE ROSE: Once, somebody from the CIA told me that the training you have is important, that you learn to be liked as well. Because you have to charm people, you have to seduce them.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: Well, if the CIA told you so, then it must be true. They are experts on that. (Laughing)

CHARLIE ROSE: The popularity rating you have in Russia, I believe, makes every politician in the world envious. Why are you so popular?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: There is something that unites me and other citizens of Russia. It is love for our Motherland.

CHARLIE ROSE: It was an emotional moment at the time of the [World War II Memory], because of the sacrifices Russia had made. And you were staying with a picture of your father with tears in your eyes.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: Yes, my family and my relatives as a whole suffered heavy losses during the Second World War. That is true. In my father’s family there were five brothers and four of them were killed, I believe. On my mother’s side the situation is much the same. In general, Russia suffered heavily. No doubt, we cannot forget that and we must not forget, not to accuse anyone but to ensure that nothing of the kind ever happens again.

CHARLIE ROSE: You also said that the worst thing that happened in the last century was the disintegration of the Soviet Union, the Soviet empire. There are those who look at Ukraine and Georgia and think that you do not want to recreate the Soviet empire, but you do want to recreate a sphere of influence, which, you think, Russia deserves because of the relationship that has existed. Why are you smiling?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: (Laughing) Your questions make me happy. Somebody is always suspecting Russia of having some ambitions, there are always those who are trying to misinterpret us or keep something back. I did say that I see the collapse of the Soviet Union as a great tragedy of the XX century. Do you know why? First of all, because 25 million of Russian people suddenly turned out to be outside the borders of the Russian Federation. They used to live in one state; the Soviet Union has traditionally been called Russia, the Soviet Russia, and it was the great Russia. They used to live in one country and suddenly found themselves abroad. Can you imagine how many problems came out?

First, there were everyday issues, the separation of families, the economic and social problems. The list is endless. Do you think it is normal that 25 million people, Russian people, suddenly found themselves abroad? The Russians have turned out to be the largest divided nation in the world nowadays. Is that not a problem? It is not a problem for you as it is for me.

CHARLIE ROSE: As far as we know, you are very popular, but, forgive me, there are many people who are very critical towards you in Russia. As you know, they say it is more autocratic than democratic. They say that political opponents and journalists had been killed and imprisoned in Russia. They say your power is unchallenged. And they say that power, an absolute power corrupts absolutely. What would you say to those people who worry about the climate, the atmosphere in Russia?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: There can be no democracy without observing the law and everyone must observe it – that is the most basic and important thing that we all should remember.

As for those tragic incidents as losses of lives, including those of the journalists, unfortunately, it happens in all countries around the world. But if it occurs in Russia, we take every step possible to ensure that the perpetrators are found, identified and punished. We will work on all issues in the same way.

But the most important thing is that we will continue improving our political system so that people and every citizen will feel that they can influence the life of state and society, they can influence the authorities, and so that the authorities will be aware of their responsibility before those people who gave their confidence to the representatives of the authorities in the elections.

CHARLIE ROSE: If you as the leader of this country insist that the rule of law be observed, if you insist that justice be done, if you because of your power do that, then it could go a long way eliminating that perception.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: A lot can be done, but not everyone immediately succeeds in everything. How long has it taken the democratic process to develop in the United States? Since it was founded. So, do you think that as regards democracy everything is settled now in America? If this were so, there would be no Ferguson issue, right? There would be no other issues of similar kind, there would be no police abuse.

Our goal is to see all these issues and respond to them timely and properly. The same applies to Russia. We also have a lot of problems.

CHARLIE ROSE: Are you curious about America more than simply another nation that you have to deal with?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: It is interesting for us to know what is happening in the US. America has a strong influence on the situation in the world in general.

CHARLIE ROSE: What do you like most about America?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: America’s creative approach to solving the problems the country is faced with, its openness and open-mindedness which make it possible to unleash the potential of the people. I believe that largely due to these qualities America has made such tremendous strides in its development.

CHARLIE ROSE: What do you think of President Obama? What is your evaluation of him?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: I do not think I am entitled to assess the President of the United States. This is up to the American people.

CHARLIE ROSE: Do you think his activities in foreign affairs reflect a weakness?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: Why? I do not think so at all. The point is that in any country, including the United States, may be in the United States even more often than in any other country, foreign policy is used for internal political struggle. An election campaign will soon start in the United States. They always play either Russian card or any other.

CHARLIE ROSE: Let me ask you this question: Do you think he listens to you?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: I think that we all listen to each other when it does not contradict our own ideas of what we should and should not do.

CHARLIE ROSE: You said Russia is not a super power. Do you think he considers Russia an equal? Considers you an equal? Which is the way you want to be treated?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: (Laughing) Ask him, he is your President! How can I know what he thinks?

CHARLIE ROSE: Are you watching the Republican political debates?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: If you ask me whether I watch them on a daily basis – I would say no.

CHARLIE ROSE: Marco Rubio is running for a Republican nomination and he said you were a gangster.

VLADIMIR PUTIN: How can I be a gangster, if I worked for the KGB? It is absolutely ridiculous.

CHARLIE ROSE: Are people in Russia fearful of you?

VLADIMIR PUTIN: I do not think so. I assume most people trust me, if they vote for me in elections. And it is the most important thing. It places great responsibility on me, immense responsibility. I am grateful to the people for that trust, but I surely feel great responsibility for what I do and for the result of my work.

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September 27, 2015 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , | 1 Comment

Putin slams ‘illegal’ US support for militants in Syria

Press TV | September 27, 2015

385981_Russia-PutinRussian President Vladimir Putin has denounced US support for militants in Syria as illegal and ineffective.

“In my opinion, provision of military support to illegal structures runs counter to the principles of modern international law and the United Nations Charter,” he told US media on Sunday ahead of a meeting with President Barack Obama.

The Russian leader said that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad deserves international support because he is fighting terrorist organizations, Reuters reported.

Putin said that Russia’s support for the Assad government was in accordance with the UN Charter, since “we have been providing assistance to legitimate government entities only.”

Russian support has come in the form of “weapons supplies to the Syrian government, personnel training and humanitarian aid to the Syrian people,” he stated.

The Russian president then pointed to the Pentagon’s $500 million program to train and equip militants in Syria, which US military and intelligence officials have branded as a failure.

“It turns out that only 60 of these fighters have been properly trained, and as few as four or five people actually carry weapons,” Putin said. “The rest of them have deserted with the American weapons to join ISIS,” he said, using another acronym for the Daesh (ISIL) terrorist group.

Obama and Putin are set to meet on Monday after Putin’s much-anticipated speech at the 70th UN General Assembly in New York, 10 years after his last speech at the annual event.

According to the Kremlin’s press secretary, Syria will be topping the agenda of the meeting. “If there is enough time,” the Ukrainian conflict will also be discussed, Dmitry Peskov said.

Russia has been beefing up its military presence in Syria, equipping Damascus with advanced military aircraft such as the Mikoyan MiG-31 fighter jets and and other sophisticated equipment.

A secret US intelligence assessment predicts that Russia will launch military strikes in Syria to boost the Syrian government and stop advances by Daesh terrorists.

The intelligence, provided to the White House, says the airstrikes would be carried out by Russian fighter jets that were flown to Syria over the last week, The Los Angeles Times reported.

US officials said Russia moved warplanes to a base near the coastal city of Latakia last week. Russia has also stationed T-90 tanks there, and has increased the number of its military flights to the same airfield.

Moscow’s military support for Assad, however, goes against the current US policy, which calls for the Syrian president’s ouster.

September 27, 2015 Posted by | War Crimes | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment