What was Putin referring to? (OPEN TREAD #16)

What was Putin referring to? (OPEN TREAD #16)

April 22, 2021

The Saker

This is an excerpt of the (relatively short) part of Putin’s speech dealing with foreign issues:

We really want to maintain good relations with all those engaged in international communication, including, by the way, those with whom we have not been getting along lately, to put it mildly. We really do not want to burn bridges. But if someone mistakes our good intentions for indifference or weakness and intends to burn or even blow up these bridges, they must know that Russia’s response will be asymmetrical, swift and tough.

Those behind provocations that threaten the core interests of our security will regret what they have done in a way they have not regretted anything for a long time.

At the same time, I just have to make it clear, we have enough patience, responsibility, professionalism, self-confidence and certainty in our cause, as well as common sense, when making a decision of any kind. But I hope that no one will think about crossing the “red line” with regard to Russia. We ourselves will determine in each specific case where it will be drawn.

So, what do you think did Putin have in mind when he spoke that?

To whom is this addressed?

Enjoy the open thread!

(question: do you like these open threads or shall I limited them to acute crisis situations?)

Cheers

The Saker

PS: the Russians are announcing that they will move some forces back to their permanent bases but, at the same time, they are still having large scale maneuvers.

Ukraine: Fascism’s toe-hold in Europe

Ukraine: Fascism’s toe-hold in Europe

April 21, 2021

The tacit support given by the centre-left to the installation of the regime in Kiev should give them cause for concern

By Francis Lee for the Saker Blog

Politics in the Ukraine can only be understood by reference to its history and ethnic and cultural make-up – a make-up criss-crossed by lasting and entrenched ethnic, cultural and political differences. The country has long been split into the northern and western Ukraine, where Ukrainian is the official and everyday lingua franca, and the more industrialised regions of the east and south where a mixture of Russian speaking Ukrainians and ethnic Russians reside. Additionally, there has long been Hungarian and Romanian settlement in the west of the country, and a particularly important Polish presence, whose unofficial capital, Lviv, was once the Polish city of Lwow. The Russian Orthodox Church is the predominant form of Christianity in the East, whilst in the west the Christian tradition tends towards Roman Catholicism.

Politically the Eastern and Southern Oblasts (Regions) which includes the cities and centres of heavy industry, Kharkov, Lugansk, Donetsk, Zaporozhe, Nikolayev, Kherson, Simferopol and Odessa, have tended to tilt towards Russia whilst the western regions have had a more western orientation. This has traditionally been reflected in the electoral division of the country. There is no party which can be considered ‘national’ in this respect, except ironically, the old Communist party, which of course is now banned. The major regional parties have been the Fatherland party of Yulia Tymoshenko (since renamed) and the former head of government, Arseniy Yatsenyuk as well as the ultra-nationalists predominantly in the west of the country, and the deposed Victor Yanukovich’s Party of the Regions in the East (now defunct) along with its junior partner in the coalition, the Ukrainian Communist Party.

However, what is new since the coup in February 2014 there has been the emergence from the shadows of ultra-nationalist (fascist) parties and movements, with both parliamentary and extra-parliamentary (i.e.,military) wings. In the main ‘Svoboda’ or Freedom Party, and the paramilitaries of ‘Right Sector’ (Fuhrer: Dimitry Yarosh) who spearheaded the coup in Kiev; these have been joined or changed their names to inter alia the Radical Party, and Patriots of the Ukraine; this in addition to the punitive right-wing militias, such as the Azov Regiment responsible for numerous atrocities in the Don Bas.

Suffice it to say, however, that these political movements and parties did not emerge from nowhere.

This far-right tradition has been historically very strong in the western Ukraine. The Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) was first established in 1929 and brought together, war veterans, student fraternities, far-right groups and various other disoriented socially and political flotsam and jetsam under its banner. The OUN took its ideological position from the writings of one, Dymtro Dontsov, who, like Mussolini had been a socialist, and who was instrumental in creating an indigenous Ukrainian fascism based upon the usual mish-mash of writings and theories including Friedrich Nietzsche, Georges Sorel, and Charles Maurras. Dontsov also translated the works of Hitler and Mussolini into Ukrainian.

The OUN was committed to ethnic purity, and relied on violence, assassination and terrorism, not least against other Ukrainians, to achieve its goal of a totalitarian and homogeneous nation-state. Assorted enemies and impediments to this goal were Communists, Russians, Poles, and of course – Jews. Strongly oriented toward the Axis powers OUN founder Evhen Konovalets (1891-1938) stated that his movement was ‘’waging war against mixed marriages’’, with Poles, Russians and Jews, the latter which he described as ‘’foes of our national rebirth’’. Indeed, rabid anti-Semitism has been a leitmotif in the history of Ukrainian fascism, which we will return to below.

Konovelts himself was assassinated by a KGB hit-man in 1938 after which the movement split into two wings: (OUN-m) under Andrii Melnyk and, more importantly for our purposes (OUN-b) under Stepan Bandera. Both wings committed to a new fascist Europe. Upon the German invasion in June 1941, the OUN-b attempted to establish a Ukrainian satellite state loyal to Nazi Germany. Stepan Lenkavs’kyi the then chief propagandist of the OUN-b ‘government’ advocated the physical destruction of Ukrainian Jewry. OUN-b’s ‘Prime Minister’ Yaroslav Stets’ko, and deputy to Bandera supported, ‘’the destruction of the Jews and the expedience of bringing German methods of exterminating Jewry to Ukraine, barring their assimilation and the like.’’

During the early days of the rapid German advance into the Soviet Union there were some 140 pogroms in the western Ukraine claiming the lives of between 13000-35000 people (Untermensch, in fascist terminology). In 1943-1944 OUN-b and its armed wing the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (Ukrainska povstanska armia – UPA) carried out large scale ethnic cleansing resulting in the deaths of tens of thousands; this was a particularly gruesome affair in Volhynia where some 90000 Poles and thousands of Jews were murdered. The campaign of the UPA continued well into the 1950s until it was virtually wiped out by the Soviet forces.

It should be said that during this early period Bandera himself had been incarcerated by the German authorities up until his release in 1944, since unlike Bandera they were not enamoured of an independent Ukrainian state but wanted total control. Bandera was only released at this late date since the German high command was endeavouring to build up a pro-German Ukrainian quisling military force to hold up the remorseless advance of the Red Army. Also pursuant to this it is also worth noting that during this period the 14th Galizian Waffen SS Division, a military Ukrainian collaborationist formation established by Heinrich Himmler, was formed to fight the Soviet forces, and yet another being the Nachtingal brigade; (1) this unit was integrated into the 14th Galizian in due course. It is also interesting to note, that every year, and up to 2014 commemoration ceremony including veterans of this unit takes place with a march through Lviv in an evening torchlight parade – genuine Nazi pastiche. The flag of this unit is not dissimilar to the Peugeot logo, the standing lion, and can be seen at ultra-nationalist rallies as well as football matches involving Lviv Karparti FC. There are also numerous statues of Bandera across Ukraine, and since the 2014 coup even street names bearing the same name. Significantly the UPA have now received political rehabilitation from the Kiev Junta, with Bandera declared a hero of the Ukraine and the UPA rebranded as ‘freedom fighters.’ One particularly splendid statue of Bandera stands proudly in Lviv and is usually adorned with flowers.

Other novel attractions the capital of Banderestan include ‘Jewish themed restaurants’ one such is Kryivka (Hideout or Lurking Hole) where guests have a choice of dishes and whose dinning walls are decorated with larger than life portraits of Bandera, the toilet with Russian and Jewish anecdotes. At another Jewish themed restaurant guests are offered black hats of the sort worn by Hasidim. The menu lists no prices for the dishes; instead, one is required to haggle over highly inflated prices ‘’in the Jewish fashion’’. Yes, it’s all good clean fun in Lviv. Anti-Semitism also sells. Out of 19 book vendors on the streets of central Lviv, 16 were openly selling anti-Semitic literature. About 70% of the anti-Semitic publications in Ukraine are being published by and educational institution called MUAP (The Inter-Regional Academy of Personnel Management). MAUP is a large, well-connected and increasingly powerful organization funded from outside anti-Semite sources, and also connected to White Supremacist groups in the USA and to the David Duke, former Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.

(It is one of the ironies of history that if the Zionists in AIPAC and the Washington neo-con think tanks, and the Labour Party Friends of Israel, were so concerned about anti-Semitism, they might try looking for it in Lviv. They wouldn’t have to search very far.)

Present day neo-Nazi groupings in Ukraine – Svoboda (Freedom) party and Right Sector – have been the direct descendants from the prior ideological cesspool. Heading Svoboda is Oleh Tyahnybok. Although these are separate organizations Tyahnybok’s deputy Yuriy Mykhalchyshyn is the main link between Svoboda’s official wing and neo-Nazi militias like Right Sector. The Social-Nationalist party as it was formerly known chose as its logo an amended version of the Wolfsangel, a symbol used by many SS divisions on the Eastern front during the war who in 2004 a celebration of the OUN-UPA, stated in 2004, that ‘’they fought against the Muscovite, Germans, Jews and other scum who wanted to take away our Ukrainian state.’’ And further that ‘’Ukraine was ruled by a Muscovite-Jewish mafia.’’ Tyahnybok came under pressure from the then President, Yuschenko, to retract his inflammatory statements, which he did, but he then retracted the retraction!

Given the fact that Svoboda was, apart from its stamping grounds in the west, making little national electoral headway, it was essential to clean up its image and deny its Nazi past. But this was always going to be difficult since the members of such groups cannot help the unscripted outbursts and faux pas which they tend to make and which reveals their true colours. For example, following the conviction and sentencing of John Demjanjuk to five years in jail for his role as an accessory to the murder of 27,900 people at the Sobibor death camp, Tyahnybok travelled to Germany and met up with Demjanjuk’s lawyer, presenting the death camp guard as a hero, a victim of persecution ‘’who is fighting for truth’’.

And so it goes on. We can therefore infer that this organization is inveterate fascist. More disturbing Svoboda has links with the so-called Alliance of National European Movements, which includes: Nationaldemokraterna of Sweden, Front Nationale of France, Fiamma Tricolore in Italy, the Hungarian Jobbik and the Belgian National Front. More importantly Svoboda held several ministerial portfolios in the Kiev administration, and Right Sector swaggers around Kiev streets with impunity, and/or are being drafted into a National Guard to deal with the separatist movements in the east, or to beat down anyone who doesn’t conform to their Ayran racial and political ideals.

One would have thought that this mutating revolution in the Ukraine would have drawn attention of the centre-left to the fact that fascism had gained a vital beachhead in Europe, and that the danger signals should be flashing. But not a bit of it; a perusal of the Guardian newspaper quickly reveals that their chief concern has been with a non-existent ‘Russian threat’. One of their reporters – or old friend, Luke Harding -described Right Sector as an ‘’eccentric group of people with unpleasant right-wing views.’’ Priceless! This must rank as the political understatement of the century. In fact, the Guardian was simply reiterating the US-imposed neo-conservative foreign policy. But naturally, this is par for the course.

  1. The Nachtingal brigade, which was later incorporated into the SS Galizien, took part in a three-day massacre of the Jewish population of Lvov (now Lviv) from 30 June 1941. Roman Shukhevych was the commander of the Nachtingal and later, in 1943, became commander of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (the “Banderivtsy”, or UPA/UIA[5] ), armed henchmen of the fascist Stepan Bandera, who after the war pretended that they had fought both Nazis and Communists. Members of the division are also accused of having murdered some 800 residents of the Polish village of Huta Pieniacka and 44 civilians in the village of Chłaniów.
Bandera statue.

Stepan Bandera statue in Lviv

Canada Ends Funding for Terror Linked ‘White Helmets’ -Tied to False Flag Gas Attacks in Syria

By VT Editors -April 22, 2021

From the Globe and Mail:

Canada has ended all funding to Syria’s famed White Helmets rescue group, with the final cut being the severance of $70 a month in stipends to 43 people who were left behind in a Jordanian refugee camp following a Canadian-led evacuation in the summer of 2018.

Canada has long been seen as one of the staunchest backers of the White Helmets, a group of civilians who earned global prominence by racing towards the front lines of Syria’s horrific civil war to try and rescue as many people as possible. The White Helmets have been credited with saving tens of thousands of lives, and the Canadian government has repeatedly boasted of the millions of dollars in annual aid it had provided to the Nobel Peace Prize-nominated group.

But Farouq Habib, deputy general manager of the White Helmets, told The Globe and Mail that Canadian funding of the organization – including specific funding for clearing mines and other unexploded ordnance, as well as money targeted at bringing more women into the organization – stopped at the end of 2019. Documents obtained by The Globe through an Access To Information request show Canadian support to the White Helmets was worth about $4-million per year, with final payments of just under $900,000 being made in March, 2020.

And now the real truth…

VT: We might also add that any NGO, and that means “non-governmental organization” that is paid by governments is 100% fake.  The White Helmets went past 100% as we will prove below.

FORGET OSCAR: GIVE THE WHITE HELMETS THE LENI RIEFENSTAHL AWARD FOR BEST WAR PROPAGANDA FILM

21st Century Wire

by Patrick HenningsonThis has to be historic low for Hollywood and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

In your average lifetime, everyone will get their share of war propaganda films. In America, it’s a kind of sacred tradition, where Hollywood does the job of revisionism, paving over an otherwise uncomfortable history with a new coat of stain. It’s necessary – not just to make us feel better about ourselves, but also to cover-up any inconvenient truths and high crimes of the state.

To be honest, when I first heard about this film being promoted by Netflix, I wasn’t surprised at all because ever since the Syria conflict began in 2011, the establishment media has gone out of its way to falsely promote it as a “civil war”, and have used the NGO known as the White Helmets which calls itself the ‘Syria Civil Defense’, as its primary media protagonist in furthering that narrative.

The fact that a documentary about The White Helmets received an Oscar Award simply confirms what a glorious bubble the entertainment industry resides in, and how easy it is these days for a documentary film to used for the purposes of propaganda and made to reinforce a mainly US-UK foreign policy project.

To Hollywood, it’s a feel good documentary, designed to make us feel good about a dirty war in Syria. But this is a level of distortion and spin that would make even Joseph Goebbels’ head spin.

In his essay published at Global Research, Dr. T.P. Wilkinson explains the liberal obsession with cosmetic revisionism:

“The “wrong war” thesis is elemental to what Carroll Quigley called “liberal imperialism” in his history of the Anglo-American establishment.[2] Liberal imperialists, to which the faux gauche (the descendants of Fabianism) also belong, do not oppose empire. They simply want it to be more aesthetically appealing, and lost wars are most un-aesthetic. So what is the liberal imperialist’s answer to unappetizing military defeats? It is cosmetic surgery.”

Expensive war propaganda in Hollywood is nothing new. High profile films like Zero Dark ThirtyAmerican Sniper and Argo were all released to much fanfare. Each of them fulfilled a role in forming a more perfect American narrative, and in some cases completely rewrote history altogether. But these were meant to be theatrical releases so naturally there’s a generous dose of artistic license taken by the director. Nothing unusual there. It’s what Hollywood does. These films also had some distance between the present day and wars which had already lapsed.

A veneer of integrity is always important. Hollywood still purports to put a lot of currency in the truth. During this year’s Oscars, The New York Times ran a TV ad (above) for the first time since 2010 entitled, “The truth is. . .”

This campaign is meant to decry fake news and its ugly cousin ‘alternative facts’ to show what high standards the mainstream media has – which demonstrates the delusional world the in which the establishment exists.  Earlier this month, I wrote an exposé showing exactly how the New York Times has been America’s perennial leader in running fake news for the purposes of advancing a war agenda. It’s ironic that this advertisement would run on a night when an Oscar would be given to one of the most egregious propaganda films of all time.Last Sunday night, The White Helmets, directed by Orlando von Einsiedel and Joanna Natasegara, took home an Academy Award for best documentary short. Unlike Argo, or American Sniper, this was a film about a war which is happening now, but this was not a conventional documentary film. The footage was provided by a terrorist-affiliated NGO based in Turkey, operating in Syria, and who is primarily funded by the US State Dept, the British Foreign Office, the Netherlands, and other NATO member and Gulf states to the tune of over $150 million and whose chief remit is producing US-led Coalition propaganda images for mass media consumption. The film, funded and distributed by Netflix, seems to be an extension of that remit.

Watch the film’s trailer here.

Normally we think of documentaries as films that are supposed to speak truth to power, but this film does the opposite. It reinforces an Anglo-American establishment power structure responsible for one of the most violent, dirty wars in modern history. It reinforces a collection of lies placed on heavy rotation by the political and media establishments since the conflict began.

In every way, Syria is the wrong war. For the US and the UK, there’s much at stake – the legacies of two paradigmatic political figures, Barack Obama and David Cameron, along with the reputations of other architects of the west’s dirty war on Syria, like former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and British Foreign Minister William Hague. Back when the war was getting started, both Clinton and Hague were busy front-running their “Friends of Syria” whistle stop tour around the Middle East and Europe, securing Gulf cash commitments while grooming their hand-picked ‘opposition’ government in exile, holding court in various 5 star hotels in Paris, London and Istanbul. The US had tried this only a year earlier with Libya, and at the time in 2011-2012, they had every reason to believe that the Libyan formula could be repeated in Syria. Those hopes were dashed by early 2013, when it became apparent that Libya was officially a failed state. Meanwhile, tens of thousands of extremist foreign fighters and jihadi soldiers of fortune began pouring into Syria. It was an invasion. This was the West’s proxy army, ready to decapitate the government, dismember the state and destabilize the region – with the full blessing of Washington DC and its partners.

The Troika of Washington-London-Paris then doubled down by pouring billions of dollars in lethal weapons to various fighting groups laying in waiting in Turkey and Jordan, as well as those already active in Syria. There were a number of well-documented arrangements, but one of the most successful working models was for the CIA and its European NATO partners illegally supplying the weapons funnelled through Jordan and Turkey – and all paid for by Saudi, Qatari cash. All the while, the public were told by the US-led Coalition all of this was for the “moderate rebels” in Syria. These were meant to be the “freedom fighters” that Ronald Reagan referred to back in the 1980’s. As it turned out, these freedom fighters in Syria were a chip of the old block from the violent, psychopathic US-backed and CIA-trained paramilitary death squads which would wreak havoc and terrorise El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras. In Syria, they are much worse in fact, as they employed  a potent brand of warped, radical Salafi and Wahabist religious fervour as the central axis of their self-styled, Medieval nihilistic raison d’etre. Yes, these are the moderates, backed by the US, UK, France, Turkey, Germany, Norway, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE, every other NATO member state, and of course, Israel, who has skill fully stayed out of the media firing line. It’s a collective project. Their mission: ‘regime change’ in Syria – to overthrow by force – the government in Damascus.

As dirty wars go, none is more filthy than this one. As the US and the UK are running point on public relations for this criminal enterprise, their big challenge has been selling it to their electorates. In order to justify the dirty war, a narrative has to be constructed and maintained. This requires a relentless negative public relations campaign demonizating the Syrian government and all of its agencies. The following talking points are therefore reinforced:

  1. Syria’s peaceful ‘Arab Spring’ uprising happened in 2011, and was violently squashed by the government.
  2. Assad is a brutal dictator, and is illegitimate.
  3. The Syrian government and its armed forces are deliberately killing their own people.
  4. The US-NATO and Gulf-backed armed ‘rebel’ opposition is legitimate.
  5. Syrian and Russian Airforce are only killing civilians, and not militant and terrorists.
  6. Terrorists do not exist in Syria, only “moderate rebels” and Syrians ‘fighting for freedom’.
  7. Therefore, Assad must be removed from power and replaced with a US-approved government.

Add to this, the entrance of Russia in the fall of 2015 at the lawful invitation of Damascus, and Russia can now be added to the demonization campaign.

These talking points are then repeated and recycled, over and over, and held up as justification for US-led, crippling economic and diplomatic sanction against the Syrian state, and the destructive policy of flooding the region with arms. In the summer of 2014, an added bonus for the US was inserted into the mix – the emergence of ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Sham). The appearance of ISIS allowed the US to fly air sorties over Syria, allegedly to fight ISIS, although after 3 years the US has produced little if any verifiable progress in ‘defeating’ ISIS. In truth, the US had hoped that ISIS, along with the other al Qaeda affiliates, would somehow do the job of destabilizing Syria and overthrowing the government of President Bashar al Assad in Damascus. Meanwhile, on-script western media operatives and politicians alike still referred to them as “rebels” and “armed opposition” – violent radical terrorist groups like Jabbat al Nusra (Nusra Front), Arar al Sham, Nour al-Din al-Zinki, Jaish al-Fatah (The Army of Conquest), along with some radical remnants of John McCain’s ‘Free Syrian Army’. This was all part of the public relations con.

But that wasn’t enough. Washington and London needed a face for the evening news. They needed to personalize the conflict in order to help maintain the illusion of a “civil war” in Syria. This is where the White Helmets come in. A merry band of men, comprised of “ordinary citizens, from bakers to teachers to painters,” all donning the White Helmets to save humanity in this moment of turmoil. Raed Saleh, the group’s spokesman says his organization is guided by a verse in the Qu’ran: “To save one life is to save all of humanity.” No doubt a beautiful line, but like so many aspects of the White Helmets – it’s been applied cosmetically. Who would dare be so insensitive as to challenge such a perfect story? For war planners in Washington and London, the White Helmets provided the PR cushion they needed to help sell a filthy proxy war to western audiences. By creating and managing their own ‘first responder’ NGO, the US, UK and its stakeholder partners have been able to leverage public sympathies – enough to keep the project going, until the war was either won or lost, or until someone caught on to the scam.


In his article in Counterpunch back in April 2015, Rick Sterling summarized the White Helmet roll-out and basic agenda:

“In reality the White Helmets is a project created by the UK and USA. Training of civilians in Turkey has been overseen by former British military officer and current contractor, James Le Mesurier. Promotion of the program is done by “The Syria Campaign” supported by the foundation of billionaire Ayman Asfari. The White Helmets is clearly a public relations project which has received glowing publicity from HuffPo to Nicholas Kristof at the NYT. White Helmets have been heavily promoted by the U.S. Institute of Peace (U.S.IP) whose leader began the press conference by declaring “U.S.IP has been working for the Syrian Revolution from the beginning.”

For the last 3 years, the White Helmets have existed for the singular purpose of producing thousands of propaganda segments – videos and images which reinforce the US-led foreign policy narrative for Syria. The brutal dictator Assad using his airforce against his own people, along with his evil Russian partners. Both are callously snuffing-out the fledging and therefore, the White Helmets’ primary financiers – the US State Dept (via USAID), the British Foreign Office, The Netherlands, along with other EU member states and Qatar. Since at least 2011, each of these nation stakeholders has had a vested interest in overthrowing the Syrian government and destabilizing Syria. In 2014, a number of independent researchers in the west began to catch the White Helmets’ unmistakable stench of dupery. Cory Morningstar’s article, “SYRIA: AVAAZ, PURPOSE & THE ART OF SELLING HATE FOR EMPIRE” (April 2014), and Rick Sterling’s piece for Counterpunch, “About Those Chlorine Gas Attacks in Syria,” and also the work of researcher Petri Krohn’s notable wiki site ‘A Closer Look at Syria‘ – first cracked the facade. They were followed by extensive investigations by Vanessa Beeley who has since produced a formidable volume of research and analysis on the White Helmets and other similar NGO projects, all of which are readily available on 21st Century Wire.

Any researcher working on a White Helmets documentary would have had access to all of this information, through a simple key word search.

Interestingly, mainstream media defenders of the White Helmets such as Michael Weiss, a senior fellow at NATO’s own propaganda think tank the Atlantic Council, as well as editor at the dubious Daily Beast, claim that criticism of the White Helmets is a Russian plot organized by Putin himself. Weiss’ conspiracy theory is expected considering his employer’s affiliation, but such typical hyperbolic accusations belie the fact that the first individuals to expose this pseudo NGO are not Russian, but rather independent writers and researchers from the US, Canada and Great Britain and why not – because it’s their tax dollars that is funding the White Helmets. It’s also worth noting that in December 2016 when the Nusra terrorist hold over East Aleppo was collapsing, it was Michael Weiss who is responsible for circulating bogus reports, including that women in East Aleppo were committing ‘mass suicide’ to avoid ‘mass rape’ by Assad’s soldiers. “Seventy-nine of them were executed at the barricades. The rest — everyone under 40 — were taken to warehouses that look more like internment camps. They face an unknown fate,” he said. “This morning 20 women committed suicide in order not to be raped.”

Weiss’ source for these sensational reports: terrorists in East Aleppo. This was just one of many fake news stories disseminated in the mainstream media. Weiss then went on to repeat the fabricated story to a global mainstream audience on CNN’s Don Lemon Show.

In reality, and according to countless first-hand on the ground eye witness testimonies collected by 21WIRE and other media outlets, as the Syrian Army began liberating East Aleppo, the so-called ‘moderate rebels’ promoted by Weiss and other western media operatives were using residents as human shields, and in some cases shooting residents who attempted to flee terrorist enclaves prior to government forces liberating the eastern half of the city.

With direct funding to the White Helmets from US-led Coalition countries already well in excess $150 million – international stakeholders expect a return on their investment. That return comes in the form of dramatic ‘search and rescue’ videos, some of which may have even been produced in Turkey, and which were then sent in  a highly coordinated fashion to the editorial desks of CNN, NBC, BBC, Al Jazeera, Al Arabiya, New York Times, Washington Post, The Guardian and others. At no time have any of these western or GCC-based ‘journalists’ ever queried the authenticity of the staged video and photographic productions supplied by the White Helmets. Mainly, their videos have been produced to promote a No Fly Zone, or ‘Safe Zones’ in Syria by creating the false impression that somehow Syrian and Russian air forces are targeting civilians in a Blitzkrieg fashion, using crude “barrel bombs”. Outside of the White Helmets propaganda, there is scant evidence of these ‘barrel bombs’ supposedly dropped by the ‘Assad Regime’ every day according to the White Helmets.

In the run-up to the White Helmets’ failed Nobel Peace Prize bid in October, CNN even went so far as to plant a fake story about a barrel bomb hitting a “White Helmets Center” in Damascus. Increasing attention has also meant that some people are beginning to question the group’s incredible claim at the time that it had somehow saved 60,000 lives since it started in late 2013. In one letter first published at Canadian Dimension, retired academic John Ryan, PhD, a retired professor of geography and senior scholar at the University of Winnipeg, challenged this narrative, saying:

“It is the White Helmets themselves who have claimed that they have rescued 60,000 civilians; this has not been verified by any other source. Despite such a classic conflict of interest, searching for independent evidence and disqualifying self-serving claims from belligerent parties in Syria has been ignored in much of the western media. As such, this claim by the White Helmets without any verification is next to meaningless.”

Despite the questions, the group continued to raise this figure by about 10,000 every two months. They now claim to have “Saved over 82,000 lives” since they were formed in 2013. Where are the list of names, dates, times, locations and medical reports – so as to corroborate and cross-reference the casualties with the alleged Syrian and Russian airstrikes? What’s the problem – can’t $150 million buy a little bit of administration for the White Helmets? At no point have they ever been able to produce any data to back up there outlandish numbers claims – so we can only conclude that this claim, like so many other claims by the group, are fraudulent. But when has Hollywood ever let facts and data get in the way of a good war propaganda story?

In addition, the White Helmets claim that they have trained some 3,000 ‘volunteers’ throughout Syria, and yet their training facility is actually located in neighboring NATO member state Turkey, on the outskirts of the city of Gaziantep. This is the same Gaziantep that’s been described in reports as “the home to ISIS killers, sex traders…”

‘CIVIL DEFENSE’ FRAUD

Vanessa Beeley’s investigation eventually took her to Syria, where she was able to track down the REAL Syria Civil Defense organization. The US and UK creation of the “White Helmets” required that they steal the name “Syria Civil Defense” from a real existing civil defense group based in Syria. Unlike the fraudulent western construct, the REAL Syria Civil Defense was founded 63 years ago and is a registered member of the International Civil Defense Organization (ICDO) based in Geneva. For the REAL Syria Civil Defence you dial “113” inside Syria. The White Helmets have no such number because they are not a real ‘search and rescue’ organization. Their whole existence is a fraudulent construct. Beeley spoke at length to the REAL Syria Civil Defense and what the crew told her was shocking. During the ‘rebel’ (terrorist) invasion in 2012 of East Aleppo, future members of the White Helmets arrived accompanied by armed terrorists to attack the real Syria Civil Defense headquarters. They stole equipment, killed and kidnapped real civil defense volunteers as part of their operation to loot and destroy the existing institution.

Real civil defense workers also detailed how terrorist ‘Hell Cannon‘ attacks had besieged the Old City of Aleppo, which lies right on the border with the Al Nusra front lines and was a regular target for the ‘rebels’ continuous indiscriminate attacks against residents. Resident testimonies have echoed the same story: while Hell Cannons terrorized the civilians of Aleppo, the White Helmets did nothing – probably because they were with the terrorists who were launching these attacks. Terrorist Hell Cannons use an assortment of containers – gas canisters, water heater tanks packed full of explosives, glass, metal and any other limb-shredding materials – these were fired indiscriminately into civilian neighborhoods throughout Aleppo. These crude artillery guns also just happen to have the exact destructive footprint as the alleged “barrel bombs” which the White Helmets and western media are repeatedly saying are being fired by the “The Regime” (Assad) against civilians.  If the White Helmets are to be believed, Assad’s Barrel Bombs have an impact the equivalent of 7.6 on the Richter scale. This outrageous claim was actually made by White Helmets founder James Le Mesurier on CNN. In fact, 7.6 on the Richter scale is the equivalent of a hydrogen bomb, we begin to get a picture of the scale of the lies which the western narrative has spinning and which they have come to reply on in order to prosecute this dirty war. Preserving this and other key pieces of fiction is central to the US, UK and George Soros funded public relations management of the White Helmets – and essential to their entire Syria narrative which has been described by American writer Rick Sterling as something akin to a “Feel Good Hoax.”

Forget about actual ‘search and rescue’. That’s not the primary function of this ‘NGO’. If you need to know one thing about the White Helmets it’s this: marketing. A central part of the marketing campaign is images of men with beards looking up at the sky – presumably waiting for the next barrel bomb, or the media’s favorite term – the “double tap” (apparently, this is when a sinister Assad or Putin pilot returns immediately after an airstrike just to have another crack at the White Helmets).

ALWAYS LOOKING UP: ‘Waiting for the next barrel bomb.’

In most of their videos, you will also see a large number of bearded men in jeans and T-shirts just standing around on the sidelines, always watching the camera, or looking busy – as if they are cognisant that filming is taking place. When we showed some of these videos to real first responders we were normally met with shoulder shrugs and cynical laughs. People who actually work in this trade will tell you that filming on a first responder call is a luxury no worker really has – aside from maybe a GoPro helmet cam. It’s just not something anyone in their right mind would think about very much if there were really people in need of assistance – and yet, this is all the White Helmets do, all day, every day. They film and produce well-edited emotive videos. Another aspect real first responders will point out to us is that most of the time, the White Helmets often look like they don’t know what they are doing – indicating either a lack of training or experience – which seems to at least contradict their lofty claims of rescuing 82,000 people  in three and half years – certainly that would provide more experience for 2,900 ‘volunteers’ than any other search and rescue worker on the planet. In other words, the White Helmets mythology and pantomime is not very credible to any serious observer. But it seems to be good enough for a Netflix audience, and sadly, good enough for the Academy, too.


AWARD-WINNER: “We got the shot! No need for any first aid spinal procedure here.”


STAGED: Many of the White Helmets’ child ‘rescue’ images are simply ridiculous. 

The other mandatory feature in the White Helmets marketing imagery where men with beards are running to or from a scene, they’re always carrying children over their shoulder. Again, when we showed many of these images to actual rescue workers, we were met with puzzled looks. Firstly, why does 99% of the White Helmets marketing imagery only feature small children? Are there not any adults out of the “82,000 saved” to be rescued from the rubble? The White Helmets claim they were only operational in early 2014, so that’s an average of 75 persons per day, everyday. Considering the amount of people they claim to have trained, spread out over Syria, and where actual air sorties have been flown – it seems like a near mathematical impossibility. As the White Helmets provide no incident data for the alleged 82,00 persons saved, there is no way to validate there sensational narrative. Also, you will rarely, if ever see the $150 million British-trained rescue crew ever use a spinal injury backboard – opting instead to just yank the children by the arm and throw them over the shoulder. When we showed these images to real first-responder workers, they were deemed not credible. So it’s safe to conclude that the White Helmets only care about one thing: pictures and videos – wired via satellite to CNN, the New York Times, or the BBC’s news desk.

SMART POWER & THE NGO COMPLEX

Still, despite the group’s obvious links to the US and UK governments, and to known extremists and terrorists – the western media continues to entertain this NGO as if it were a legitimate ‘Civil Defense’ organization. The pseudo NGO strategy is part of an over-arching western strategy which is related to the term Smart Power (following on from Soft Power) where western governments create shadow state organizations designed to co-opt and ultimately usurp actual state agencies – in effect weakening the real civil body by replacing it with a fake version of the original.


DECEPTION: Early on, the White Helmets used images of women in order to market crowdfunding campaigns to gullible western audiences. 

In the calculus of war planners in the US, UK and France, even if they were unsuccessful in toppling the Assad government in Damascus, these fake NGOs would still be operation in “rebel” areas in the hopes that they might be viewed as legitimate civil organizations and would then replace the real ones.

After 5 years, the US or European authorities could then cite these organizations as legitimate deliverers of public service, thus giving western governments a much-needed foothold in governerates inside the target nation, in this case, Syria. Similar projects have been undertaken to replace municipal police forces with the “Free Syrian Police“, as well as western and GCC-sponsored projects in terrorist-held Idlib to create uniformed civil cleaning staff, and so on. Why doesn’t Netflix make a documentary exposing that? If they did, that would be real filmmaking; instead what we get is more public relations promotion for a failed Western foreign policy.


LA LA LAND: White Helmet filmmakers Joanna Natasegara and Orlando Von Einsiedel basking in the glory of a job well done. 

By now, it should be obvious how this propaganda cycle has been functioning, although apparently, not obvious enough for Netflix’s award-winning filmmakers Joanna Natasegara and Orlando Von Einsiedel. The fact that their beloved White Helmets stole their name from an existing, legitimate and internationally recognized first-responder agency show be cause for alarm. For any journalist researching the White Helmets, you would think the first port of call would be to speak to the official certified civil defense body. This is what 21WIRE and Beeley did. Why didn’t Natasegara and Von Einsiedel bother to check this obvious line of inquiry? The fact they didn’t might be proof that the intention on their film was not to make a legitimate documentary, but rather to glorify to US-led narrative of the ‘moderate opposition’. By definition, Natasegara and Von Einsiedel’s work cannot rightly be called journalistic but propagandist. By promoting a pseudo ‘NGO’ funded by western government, and by giving succor to extremists, their film is directed against the Syrian people – which exactly characterizes the US and UK foreign policy in Syria since 2011.

If Natasegara and Von Einsiedel deserve any reward today it should really be the Leni Riefenstahl Award for Best Propaganda Film.

But even Nazi war propaganda filmmaker Riefenstahl could hardly image propaganda on this scale – a third sector NGO and integrated media arm,  attached to dozens of governments, paramilitary military units, intelligence agencies, hundreds of corporate media outlets, and with a multi-million dollar crowd-funding facility. If nothing else, the White Helmets operation is impressive in its scope. It’s the west’s template for building a Shadow State in target nations. If it’s successful in Syria, this formula will be recreated in other marginal hot zones around the globe. That’s why the White Helmets are being guarded so closely by the western establishment.

DOUBTS OVER AUTHENTICITY

Boston Globe columnist Stephen Kizner was one of many journalists who expressed disappointment over the Academy’s selection:

There is also the problem of obvious staging in many of the White Helmets’ supposed video rescues. The following is perhaps one of the most ridiculous. As with so many of their videos, the editing is highly misleading. In the following “Rag Doll” clip, we first see two separate views of the three men working on the rescue site – and then the edit suddenly cuts to the miraculous rescue of charming little 4 year old girl – supposedly emerging from under tons of concrete and rubble from a collapsed building. Miraculously, she is not crying and looks immaculate, while holding an equally clean rag doll. Then the edit cut jumps, and a little 3 year old boy suddenly appears from the exact same spot. Both children appear to have sustained no injuries, nor any visible cuts or bruises, and no dust. Not bad for being buried under tons of concrete, gravel and dust. Incredible, but par for the course in the completely improbable “first-responder” reality show that is the White Helmets.Watch:

After reviewing this video, it’s difficult to deny that it has all the hallmarks of a staged production piece, designed to tug at the hearts of a western public – conditioned to accept this ‘first responder’ narrative as sacrosanct, for fear of appearing callous in the face of this media-driven, multi-million dollar No Fly Zone’ public relations campaign. This is not the only fraudulent video released by the White Helmets, but even the existence of one fraudulent rescue video should be grounds to question all the group’s material.

Again, the whole purpose of these video and photos is to influence public opinion against the Syrian and Russian governments. Therefore the core mission of the White Helmets media campaign is influence western and Gulf audiences. Its objectives are as follows:

  1. To create public disfavour against the Syrian government.
  2. Maintain crippling western sanctions against Syria.
  3. Gain sympathy for jihad, recruit new fighters from Europe, GCC, Asia and other regions.
  4. Fabricate ‘evidence’ used to implicate the Syrian government and its allies in war crimes.
  5. Reinforce the narrative that Syrian and Russian Forces are deliberately targeting civilians,hospital and schools – and not terrorists.
  6. Blame Syria and Russia for war crimes (when in actuality, these crimes are committed by rebel-terrorists, White Helmets). 

SYRIAN CURVE BALLS

Back in 2003, one man was responsible for delivering the WMD lies that helped to fabricate the US and UK case for invading Iraq. His name was “Curveball”. His motives weren’t exactly straight forward: “My main purpose was to topple the tyrant in Iraq because the longer this dictator remains in power, the more the Iraqi people will suffer from this regime’s oppression.”

In Syria, the west have been constantly farming a series of curve balls – on call and ready to deliver whatever the US State Dept or the British Foreign Office need in order to grandstand in front of the UN Security Council or on the floor of Parliament.

The New York Times reported that during March and April on 2015, the White Helmets claimed that at least 20 ‘barrel bombs’ containing chlorine were dropped in six towns in northwestern Syria. It almost sounded as if the the US and UK were so desperate to establish Assad as crossing the Red Line, that they would go so far as to fabricate a case that chlorine bombs were used by “the regime”:

“Frustrated with the Security Council’s impasse over the issue, rescue workers and doctors are now working to bring evidence of chlorine gas attacks directly to the French, British and American governments for testing. The aim is to give states a solid basis for action against the attacks, in the Security Council or through quieter diplomatic pressure, said James Le Mesurier, the British director of a nonprofit group, Mayday Rescue, that trains and equips the White Helmets, Syrian volunteers supported by the British, Danish and Dutch governments.”

At the time, White Helmet founder Le Messerier was heavily involved in trying to fashion together a chemical weapons case against the Syrian government. In 2015. The NYT stated:

“Going directly to governments that have pushed for Mr. Assad’s ouster creates its own challenges. His allies may dismiss their evidence as politically tainted and can point to recent chlorine attacks in Iraq for which the government there blamed insurgents, not to mention the discredited American claims of an Iraqi chemical weapons program that were used to justify invading Iraq. To deter allegations of tampering or falsification, Mr. Le Mesurier and three Syrian doctors involved said they systematically documented the chain of custody from collection to handover. They have plenty of cases to work with. Since March 16, in Idlib alone, the White Helmets have documented 14 attacks with 26 suspected chlorine barrels that sickened scores of people.”

In the end, none of  this stuck, most likely because the White Helmets’ ‘evidence’ was either fabricated, or the ‘rebels’ (terrorists) themselves were the actual perpetrators of chlorinemustard or sarin attacks – a fact which was born out through multiple investigations already. Once again – more fraud perpetrated by the White Helmets on behalf of the US and UK governments.

In September 2016, the White Helmets were also instrumental in trying to assign blame for an incident where a UN Aid Convoy was attacked outside of the town of Urm al-Kubra, west of Aleppo. The west were quick to blame it on the Russian and Syria militaries – despite the fact there was no evidence to implicate them.

As if by magic, the White Helmets were the first on the scene videoing among the flames. A Syrian Arab Red Crescent warehouse was also said to have been hit. 21WIRE later reported that indeed, the White Helmets had helped to stage the said ‘Russian Bombing’ scene outside of Aleppo – which was automatically accepted by the western mainstream media, John Kerry, Samantha Power and others, as ‘proof’ of Russian and Syrian guilt.

HOLLYWOOD ‘CHANGE AGENTS’

One of the White Helmets documentary’s biggest advocates is none other than Hollywood actor George Clooney (image, left). In the run-up to the Oscars, Clooney, along with his wife – celebrity human rights lawyer, Amal Clooney, personally campaigned on behalf of the film. It turns out, Clooney’s interest is more than just that of an liberal activist. AP reported that Clooney is in the process of producing a feature-film version of the “White Helmets.” He stated:

“The White Helmets are the heroes. So if I can help them out at all, and people can know about it, in any way possible, that’s a good use of celebrity, I think.”

As a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Clooney seems to relish in his role of celebrity humanitarian. Unfortunately, fellow members of the Council include an impressive line-up of war criminals and other dignitaries, like Dick Cheney and Henry Kissinger, as well as a chief architect of the collapse of Libya and the dirty war in Syria, Hillary Rodham Clinton.

However, judging by Clooney’s devotion to the White Helmets, it’s pretty clear that he is either ignorant of what he is supporting, or worse – he is using his public profile to push a Deep State agenda. In September 2016, Clooney managed to get an audience with John Kerry and the US State Department in order to promote his new “anti-corruption” NGO called, The Sentry. Not surprisingly, the establishment’s globalist information outlet the Daily Beast was on hand (along with a prime segment which aired on CNN) to get the word out. Editor John Avlon writes:

“Getting Americans to care about human-rights atrocities half-a-world away is hard. Getting them fired up about confronting the corruption that fuels those slaughters is an order of magnitude harder. But that’s what actor George Clooney and human-rights activist John Prendergast are aiming to do with their new project,The Sentry.”

The Sentry, is supposed to help the poor people of South Sudan by ‘taking aim at government corruption.’ Clooney goes on to demonize the South Sudan government as utterly corrupt and redeemable only by way of the international community’ – presumably through the International Criminal Court in the Hague. What Clooney will not tell his fawning public is the CIA’s role in fomenting unrest in Sudan prior to its rather convenient partition in 2010. We say convenient because splitting the country effectively cut-off port access and therefore oil pipeline access for South Sudan of which China has been a major partner on the exploration of energy. This was followed by a dirty war in South Sudan with much of the evidence pointing to the CIA. TeleSur English reports:

“The CIA is using a mercenary warlord named Riek Machar, who has a long history of ethnic massacres and mass murder to his credit, to try and overthrow the internationally recognized government of President Salva Kiir for the crime of doing business with rivals of Pax Americana, the Chinese.”

Again, we hear the familiar tropes about ‘child soldiers’ and ‘mass rape’, and how, “we must act now” – all part and parcel of the neocolonial “helpless Africa” narrative. Clooney’s partner John Prendergast delivers emotive plea:

“The war erupted, it was a fire that just raged across the land…They’ll use attack helicopters. They’ll use rape as a tool of war. They’ll recruit child soldiers and go in and send them as cannon fodder into villages to kill people. The worst human-rights abuses being committed in the world. And this is what South Sudan has dealt with because of this fallout between these thieves over the last 2½ years.”

Watch global policeman Clooney, flanked by his celebrity friend Don Cheadle, unveiling his “forensic investigation” implicating the government of South Sudan:

Interestingly, Clooney’s Sentry Project is nested under the globalist think tank, the Center for Advanced Defense Studies and bankrolled by John Podesta’s Center for American Progress – a Washington DC-based think tank with ties to the military industrial complex. Peace activist and author David Swanson outlined Sentry’s precarious connections to America’s defense industry here.Here, we can point out that the policy of ‘evicting Chinese influence’ from Africa was included in the military directives outlined in US AFRICOM immediately after its official launch in 2007-2008. Similarly, billions in direct Chinese investment in Libya was thwarted by NATO’s illegal abuse of UN Resolution 1973 which led to the complete collapse of the Libyan state. Very quickly, we can see that Clooney’s celebrated “crusade against corruption” is very likely part of a public relations smoke screen to conceal US clandestine efforts to isolate Chinese interests in the Sudans, while nudging forward US and transnational corporate policy in South Sudan, with the ultimate goal of regime change in that country. 

You can’t help but be reminded here of another similar Deep State public relations ploy centered around the exact same location back in 2012. There’s no better example of how Hollywood’s do-gooder war is waged than Kony 2012, described in Atlantic Magazine as a viral video campaign which “reinforces a dangerous, centuries-old idea that Africans are helpless and that idealistic Westerners must save them.” Like with Clooney’s Sentry Project, KONY 2012 leveraged the power of media and celebrity to manufacture public consent through an emotive public appeal, and collected millions in public donations in the process. In this case, the antagonist was the illusive warlord Joseph Kony, leader of the Lords Resistance Army. The only problem was, at the time in 2012 no one had actually seen Kony in 6 years. Still, the campaign lobbied president Obama to deploy US forces to Uganda “find Kony” in order to “saving the children”. Despite the collapse of the project following a very public meltdown by the charity’s founder, Jason Russell, the US still went and deployed US military assets to Uganda under an expansion of US AFRICOM operations in Africa. Mission accomplished. The genius of this was that it concealed the genocide and crimes against humanity carried out by President Obama’s good friend and Uganda’s ‘President for Life’ Yoweri Museveni, whose crimes have since been well-documented in powerful independent non-CIA film production called a Brilliant Genocide. It turns out that Museveni is guilty of all the things and more – which the west had laid on the ghost of Kony. A brilliant deception. Of course, the irony of this is mostly lost on Hollywood’s humanitarian jet-set, all of whom thought KONY 2012 was such a great idea when it was first launched.

What Kony 2012 achieved on a ‘activist’ and public relations level is exactly what The White Helmets documentary is doing – an expensive smokescreen to hide the real horrors of a conflict, namely, the destructive policies of western governments and their local ‘partners’ which foment trouble and strife. In the case of Syria, it’s the US, UK, Turkey, France, and GCC support of violent, armed extremists – who the White Helmets are exclusively embedded with. The cynical use of the classic American gospel hymn, “When the Saints Go Marching In” as the documentary’s theme song by filmmakers Natasegara and Von Einsiedel speaks to level of manipulation of the narrative (see the bottom of this article, with numerous photographs of White Helmet ‘saints’).

Regarding the White Helmets project, Clooney revealed something else in his rhetoric when he remarked:

Clooney said that as a celebrity, “I can’t change policy … but I can make things louder.”

This is an example of the power-activist political set in Hollywood.

We find similar language in an interview with White Helmets director Joanna Natasegara in 2016, at the International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC) in Malaysia while promoting her Oscar nominated film Virunga and its new foundation. Natasegara refers to herself as an “Impact Producer” (aka Change Agent) using documentaries to make a big impact by reinforcing or pushing a narrative. In many ways, this is antithetical to the whole process of filmmaking, especially in the research and discovery stages, and in the investigative aspects of historical documentary filmmaking – which is about documenting events but also about looking below popular political narratives to gain deeper insights, and not pushing political or policy outcomes. Power-activism is personified by numerous online marketing campaigns calling for a No Fly Zone in Syria. At the Oscar ceremony, both Natasegara and Von Einsiedel called for ‘an end to the war in Syria’ which everyone can agree on, but it rings hollow next to the words of persons like US Congresswomen Tulsi Gabbard and Tima Kurdi, the aunt of 3 yr old Alan Kurdi who washed-up on a beach to become the face of the tragic face of the migrant crisis. Both Gabbard and Kurdi appeared on global media this week calling for the US and its Coalition allies to STOP sending arms, cash and support to extremists and terrorist ‘rebels’ in Syria. Only this can bring an end to the war and allow refugees to to return to Syria said both Gabbard and Kurdi. This plea is real and reflects the facts on the ground, as opposed to the fake narrative constructed by Natasegara and Von Einsiedel, which carefully whitewashes all clandestine involvement by US, UK and its partners (who created and are funding the White Helmets) which has aided in the systematic destruction of Syria over the last 6 years, not to mention the needless deaths of hundreds of thousands. It is no coincidence that many members  of the White Helmets have extremist ties, and the fact that this is being covered-up by Natasegara and Von Einsiedel who are literally portraying the group as “saints” – speaks to the level of deception involved in this story. Now we can see Natasegara’s modus operandi with making the White Helmets film; it’s not so much about documenting history in the conventional sense, so much as it is about ‘making an impact’ politically – on behalf of the governments who created the White Helmets, which veers into the area of propaganda again.

Watch Joanna Natasegara in an interview here from the 2016 IACC Conference:

On the surface, Natasegara appears to be waging the classic international liberal crusade by fighting against mining, oil, and poaching, in the poor, permanently ‘developing’ countries like the Congo. No one will argue that the level of corruption in African countries can be extreme in some cases, but what are the real causes of institutional corruption in those lands? Indeed, “Stopping” them (corrupt officials) in Africa, but doing little to stop them at the actual corporate level in London, Belgium, New York or Washington DC. In fact, many of the biggest corporate donors to these ‘good causes’ projects are connected to the very same corporate behemoth that activists purport to be fighting against. This cycle of power activism feeds into the cycle of neocolonialism – in what researcher Cory Morningstar so rightly refers to as “the wrong kind of green.” As it turns out, the IACC is funded by none other than Transparency International (T.I.), one of the main players in the globalist “anti-corruption” syndicate, which is very much linked to the work of Hollywood activists like Clooney. In the past, T.I. has been accused of cooking its own books in its anti-corruption investigations, including an incident in 2008 where the organization used falsified data to try and frame the Chavez government in Venezuela during one of its anti-corruption investigations. This is a good example of NGO smart power being used to undermine a target nation. Clooney and Natasegara are just two of the many public faces who represent this network.Back in 2016, when the Panama Papers story broke, seemingly out of nowhere, the mainstream media utterly failed in analysing what they were really looking at. Yes, there’s plenty of corruption and shady shell companies in Panama (but no word of the giant offshore corporate maze located in Delaware), but was the endgame of that supposedly independent ‘investigation’? Amid all the mainstream media hype and ‘anti-corruption’ grandstanding, researcher James Corbett was one of the only people who asked the right question: “So why does this new mega-leak seemingly only expose those in the State Department crosshairs or expendable others and not a single prominent American politician or businessman? And what does this have to do with the OECD’s plan for a global taxation grid?” (LISTEN to my full interview last year with James Corbett here)

Nazi propaganda filmmaker, Leni Riefenstahl.

Natasegara also goes on about using “activists” and “citizen journalists” to achieve the desired ‘impact.’ Here she is alluding to the scores of Syrian “activists” and the White Helmets, who have supplied western media outlets with the images our governments want in order to reinforce the official narrative. Natasegara is promoting the exact tool she utilized in the deceptive Netflix project where all of the alleged stock ‘rescue’ footage was supplied to producers by the White Helmets themselves. Natasegara claims to have trained 21 year old White Helmet ‘activist’ Khaled Khatib in Turkey before sending him into Syria to shoot much of the footage. NPR claims that he ‘risked his life’ to shoot the film for Netflix. Khatib was later blocked from entering the US to attend the Oscar ceremony in Los Angeles. So the Netflix producers had no way of independently verifying what they’ve been given – effectively relying on al Qaeda affiliated individuals to supply them with made-to-order ‘rescue’ footage.

How can they call this a documentary?

In this case, it didn’t seem to matter to Joanna Natasegara and her co-producer Orlando Von Einsiedel whether its real or staged, so long as the White Helmets narrative was achieved.

Despite the claims by Netflix producers, Natasegara and Von Einsiedel – purpose was to reinforce the US-led Coalition fake narrative on Syria which has never resembled the facts on the ground. The US-UK establishment could not have hand-picked better tools for this job than Natasegara and Von Einsiedel. If they were real filmmakers interested in the truth, they would have paused to question why this group was founded by a senior British Military intelligence officer, James Le Mesurier, why it is based in Turkey and not Syria, and why the group only operated exclusively in Al Nusra (al Qaeda in Syria), Arar al Sham (al Qaeda affiliate) and ISIS-held areas in Syria, why are White Helmets members routinely pictured with weapons, and with terrorists. The answer is simple to anyone with half a brain and who is being honest: the White Helmets are composed of mainly partisan extremists. That’s a fact.

Still, all of this is noticeably missing from Natasegara and Von Einsiedel’s storybook version of the White Helmets, which is inexcusable considering how there’s no shortage of readily available evidence pointing directly to White Helmets’ ties to terrorists. One has to assume that the filmmakers knew about the extremist links and the US-NATO funding of the group but chose to ignore this in favor of producing their expensive piece of propaganda, and as we saw this week, both were all too happy to lap up the awards – even though the fiction they created has aided in giving political cover to illegal weapons transfers by the west and GCC states and has also been instrumental in wrongly demonizing the Syrian government while further legitimizing US-led Coalition-backed terrorism in Syria.

Concealing the White Helmet fraud under the seemingly innocuous guise of “Free Speech”, “Free Press” or “Citizen Journalism” is the absolute dereliction of any journalistic inquiry or responsibility in vetting the footage supplied by the White Helmets.

“Freedom for journalists has to be absolute. There is no such thing as restrictions on media that work,” said Natasegara.

Apparently, Oscar winner Natasegara was not too keen on free speech after Youtube artist Tyranny Unmasked posted a video critical of the Netflix White Helmets trailer. It appears that Natasegara used YouTube’s communitarian censorship system to take down the video critical of her film. Watch:

Being British, one might hope that Natasegara could apply these lofty polemics to the UK – and ask why the government still controls journalists and press through the archaic practice of issuing D-Notices, or the government’s aggressive stance towards whistleblowers with UK authorities threatening imprisonment for simply handling leaked material, or perhaps even the Leveson Inquiry’s attempt at allowing state control over what’s left of the UK’s free press. Similarly, the anti-corruption crowd might consider challenging Barack Obama’s war on whistleblowing which saw freedoms roll back at a record clip over the last 8 years. Certainly, that’s no shining city on the hill, or a role model for the seemingly lowly, poor and hopelessly “corrupt” developing world nations that the globe-trotting Natasegara is after. Only last year, we learned how the Pentagon hired elite UK public relations firm Bell Pottingerpaying them $540 million to produce, among other items, fake al Qaeda propaganda videos – to further prop-up a failed US and UK foreign policy facade. Perhaps Natasegara, or Clooney could do an “anti-corruption” film explaining how many starving children could be fed for a month or how many schools could be built, or how many water wells could be drilled – with $540 million dollars of US taxpayer money.

That’s only one example to demonstrate how the NGO operatives ignore the mountains of institutional corruption in the US and Europe, and the destructive murderous military industrial juggernaut – in favor of trying to yank the rug out from under a government located in some poor African, Asian, or Middle Eastern country which the US and its partners have their eye on for regime change.

CROWD-FUNDING TERROR

One of the saddest parts of this whole story is also that the power of marketing and propaganda means that tens of thousands of unwitting members of the public have been duped into donating their hard-earned money for this dubious NGO. If the wider public knew what Aleppo residents already know – that the White Helmets function as a support group alongside known terrorists groups like Al-Nusra, Ahrar al-Sham, Nour al-Din al-Zinki & ISIS and others (all known extremist groups operating inside of Syria),  the White Helmets would not be celebrated as humanitarian, but rather, they’d be condemned as a multimillion fraud, customized by the West in order to give cover to the illicit practice of arming and supporting ‘rebel’ terrorists by the US, UK, France, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and others.

By all accounts, White Helmets video and photo propaganda has been instrumental in aiding in the recruitment of new terrorists – new fighters from the West, Middle East and Asia – who see the contrived news reports in their countries of origin and believe the false narrative being portrayed by mainstream media news agencies. In this way, you could say that because the media are not vetting any of this material and are defaulting into a Western foreign policy bias by spinning all of their stories into emotive productions that reinforce a NATO and GCC-led ‘regime change’ and completely contrived “moderate rebel” narrative – the media are complicit in helping to drive the recruitment of terrorists internationally. By anyone’s definition, they are providing material support and comfort to known violent, religious extremists terrorists. When you break it right down, that’s exactly what is happening here. Undoubtedly, Hollywood is guilty of this.

Lastly, to see the White Helmets fundamental terrorist connection, one need look no further than to its ‘President’ Raed Saleh.

TERRORIST CENTRAL: Raed Saleh photographed with his close associate Mustafa al-Haj Yussef, leader of White Helmet Centre in terrorist-held Idlib province (Photo: al-Haj Yussef Facebook page)

Last month, 21WIRE investigative journalist Vanessa Beeley reported on White Helmet leader Raed Saleh’s close partner, Mustafa al-Haj Yussefleader of the White Helmets centre in the Al Nusra-occupied city of Khan Shaykhun, Idlib. The photo, above, clearly demonstrates the close relationship that Saleh shares with his friend and colleague Yussef, and apparently with the armed militant seen standing behind the two White Helmet leaders. On the 1st June 2014, White Helmet deputy Yussef called for the shelling of civilians during elections in Damascus.  He declares that this murderous act would be the “greatest declaration of revolution” .  

Is this the words of a “neutral, impartial, humanitarian”? Here we can see the White Helmets calling for direct violence against civilians who are doing nothing more than exercising their right to vote – in their own country. See the full story here.

So to even suggest that the White Helmets are “unarmed and neutral civilian volunteers” is tantamount to fraud. The fact that filmmakers Natasegara, Von Einsiedel and Netflix are using this false statement in their film and public relations material demonstrates outright deception on their part. 

It crucial to reiterate that the White Helmets are not a Syrian creation, but rather a product of US, British and NATO intelligence special project to use western conceived and western-funded NGO organizations to assist in the stated US-led Coalition foreign policy of ‘regime change’ for Syria by producing western and GCC-oriented propaganda designed to undermine the Syrian government and state. Founded by British military intelligence officer James Le Mesurier, a graduate of Sandhurst Military Academy. It is believed that all totalled including undisclosed funding and solicited donations, that the group has received well in excess of over $250 million dollars since coming online in late 2013. 

The following is list of known funding sources for the White Helmets as of October 2016:

To anyone who bothers to look, the White Helmets extremist links are undeniable. Watch as Al Nusra and jihadi spokesman acknowledges the White Helmets as “Mujahadeen”:

Based on the evidence presented, and the images inserted below, one can safely conclude that at the very least, filmmakers Joanna Natasegara and Orlando Von Einsiedel and Netflix did zero due diligence when researching this multimillion dollar film production. Of course, that’s being generous. It seems more likely that they were fully aware that the White Helmets are attached to the multitude of extremist and terrorist groups – and conveniently ignored this fact in favour of constructing their propaganda narrative. Hence, a case could be made that these filmmakers and their distributor have knowingly provided promotion and political support to known terrorists – which is in direct violation of numerous US, European and International laws.


White Helmet operative, seen here at a “moderate” extremist, Free Sryian Army, meeting in Idlib, clearly demonstrating political affiliation to a widely proclaimed non “moderate” militant group, unable to function without support from better armed & funded terrorist factions such as Nusra Front.  (Photo: Screenshot from video

Not only are the White Helmets embedded exclusively with extremists – they ARE extremists. Certainly, it is the choice of White Helmets members to also join extremist terrorist fighting groups, but by doing so, the White Helmets cannot rightly claim that their members are either neutral, nonpartisan, or ‘unarmed’. To claim otherwise constitutes cunning and deception on the part of the White Helmets and their promotional agents, including Netflix corporate marketing, and the film’s producers Joanna Natasegara and Orlando Von Einsiedel. If Netflix were to take this issue seriously, after reviewing readily available evidence they would remove this film from their distribution chain, and Natasegara and Von Einsiedel should return their award to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. 

The following are a series of over 50 visual exhibits which clearly indicate that the White Helmets are not neutral, and whose ranks are in fact filled with extremists, including those with memberships in US-Coalition-backed internationally recognized terrorist fighting groups operating throughout Syria… 

White Helmet members are clearly pictured together with violent terrorists, and also taking part in heinous terrorists acts, as well as war crimes under the Geneva Convention:

Photos below were censored by Google

White Helmet-Terrorist fighting group dual membership:

White Helmet-Terrorist fighting group dual membership:

White Helmet-Terrorist group dual membership:

As shown previously, a White Helmet speaking on behalf of the Western-backed ‘Opposition” pseudo state, in front of the “moderate” militant, Free Syrian Army, French colonial, “Syrian” flag:

White Helmets with armed opposition acting in the role of ‘victim’ in the notorious staged “Mannequin Challenge” video:

White Helmet-Terrorist group dual membership:

White Helmet are armed:

White Helmet with Terrorist disposing of mutilated bodies of Syrian National Army soldiers:

White Helmet are armed and embedded with “rebel” (terrorist) fighters:

White Helmet-Terrorist group dual membership:

White Helmet with TerroristAl Nusra Front flying the terrorist flag:

White Helmet-Terrorist group dual membership:

US-UK funded White Helmets operatives gloating while taking part in kidnapping, torture and execution of Syrian National Army soldiers, a violation of Geneva Convention on war crimes:

White Helmets pictured here working alongside with Nusra-ISIS terrorists:

“Hand in Hand with Al Nusra” (al Qaeda in Syria):

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

Possible White Helmets involvement of the Terrorist (by Nour al-Din al-Zinki) execution and beheading of 12 year-old Abdulla Issa:

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

White Helmets embedded exclusively in ISIS and Terrorist-held areas:

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

White Helmets ARE militants:

White Helmets -Terrorist dual membership:

Rebel media operative demonstrates support for ISIS in Syria:

By Gordon Duff and New Eastern Outlook, Moscow

It’s late July, 2018. In the Middle East, 800 men and their families are heading for Western Europe, Canada and the US, to be resettled as refugees. The true story behind their evacuation by Israel and their proposed “resettlement” as heroes is one of the most devious and frightening tales of our time.

Sources also tell us that among the 800 are top ISIS commanders who will soon be living in Germany, Britain, Canada and the United States, doing what terrorist commanders do, organizing cells and murdering innocent civilians, just like they did in Syria and Iraq and just like the White Helmets had done all along.

The White Helmets are an enigmatic group, lauded as volunteers and life savers, servant of mankind, they were organized by Britain’s MI6 as a black propaganda and anti-Assad organization funded by the governments of Britain, the US, Germany and others. They are not an NGO. There is nothing “non-governmental” about them.

Essentially, they are terrorist mercenaries.

With up to 30,000 opposition fighters inside Syria giving up arms and either rejoining Syrian society under the Damascus government in the last 12 months, or for some being resettled and perhaps continuing the fight, the 800-man force known as the White Helmets is unique.

Perhaps this is why they had to be “disemboweled” from Syria though an illegal military incursion that to the trained observer also demonstrates the curious close relationships between ISIS, al Qaeda and the Israeli Defense Forces, almost as if they were one in the same and the White Helmets were simply just another ISIS or al Qaeda organization.

It was the White Helmet’s fabricated stories of gas attacks and “barrel bombings” that drove Donald Trump to calling the elected Syrian leader “animal Assad” and launching multiple strikes on Syrian territory without UN authorization or NATO consensus.

It was the same Trump advisors and the same Donald Trump who now says he believes President Putin that, not so long ago, took the word of perhaps the sleaziest of all CIA terror operations, the White Helmets, a CIA he now says has always misled him, has always been useless, as justification for attacking Syria.

Why then did Trump attack Syria when the information he based his decision on was, by his own admission, “fake news” from his political enemies. Taking it one step further, not just fake but crazy as well, with Syria triumphant on the battle field. Syria had warned the world that the White Helmets were preparing a provocation in order to justify an American defense of ISIS against a Syria more united than ever under President Assad.

That news was everywhere, certainly across the international and alternative media that Trump is known to monitor nearly 20 hours a day on his smart phone. How did he miss it?

Trump and Putin

One thing the world now knows beyond a doubt is that Donald Trump believes Vladimir Putin. But if this is true, which we know it to be, then Trump’s actions regarding the White Helmets are bizarre and even criminal. Let us take a closer look.

On July 18, 2018, President Donald Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau phoned Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

They asked that Israel send IDF units well into ISIS and al Qaeda held territory, into Syria, in violation of the 1974 cease fire agreement.

There, the IDF was to, in less than 4 hours, screen 800 adult males claiming to be “White Helmets,” along with their families, load same onto busses and drive them to CIA controlled training camps in Jordan about 50 miles south of the recently liberated Syria city of Daraa.

The planning and execution of this effort, in less than 24 hours, was both incredible and heroic. Israeli forces met absolutely no resistance from ISIS or al Qaeda but were, rather, greeted with full cooperation and open arms.

Let us remember that, only a week ago, American President Donald Trump met with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. Trump was effusive in his praise of Vladimir Putin, particularly in his trust of Putin and Trump’s belief that Vladimir Putin is an honest man.

This being the case, one can’t help but wonder why President Trump would ask Israel to rescue the White Helmets from the Syrian Arab Army. Moscow has stated for many months that the White Helmets are, in fact, a terrorist organization and has offered proof at both the United Nations and at The Hague backing its assertions.

In fact, the White Helmets, supposedly a civil defense NGO made up of Syrian volunteers, has long been exposed by journalists like Vanessa Beeley, Nahed al Husaini and Carla Ortiz as guilty of the murder of thousands of Syrian civilians through staged gas attacks and bombings.

The White Helmets, lauded by American leftist and Hollywood actor, George Clooney, have been cited in the media, particularly in Russia, Iran and Syria, but other nations as well, as among the most dangerous terrorists in the world.

Why then, as Trump has stated he values Putin’s opinion so much, and this is a case where Putin’s opinion is backed up by significant and irrefutable evidence, has Trump done something so stupid?

You see, it isn’t just that Trump and Trudeau asked Israel to send troops into Syria in violation of UN agreements and Syria’s sovereignty, a war crime in itself, but Trump and to a lesser extent for Trudeau, knowingly asked Israel to aid terrorists who are guilty of crimes against humanity.

It gets worse.

According to the German newspaper, Bild, the White Helmets, 800 so far, will be sent to Germany, Britain, Canada and the US. There is considerable evidence that this is an army of “800 little bin Ladens,” with many trained bomb makers, nearly all jihadists and most minimally need to be adjudicated as to their crimes against the Syrian people.

Additionally, one might well note that no screening process was employed whatsoever. We are certain that Israel simply loaded anyone who showed up onto a bus.

Let’s take a second and picture this. We have 800 families who traveled to an embarkation point deep inside the ISIS enclave in Southern Syria, an enclave shrinking by the minute.

ISIS fighters are all around, flags and guns, many carrying their head chopping swords, others with cameras and phones, recording and uploading events to their YouTube channels and Facebook accounts that are never cancelled no matter what kind of material they post.

Along side them are IDF units, in uniform, armed, standing side by side with ISIS fighters while dozens of busses are driven in from Jordan.

Does anyone find anything wrong about this picture? Do I have something wrong here?

How was this going to be sold to the public when these ISIS terrorists show up at the Toronto or Indianapolis airports and are rushed through customs and into their new lives, paid housing, free medical care for life, government checks in the mail, their children not seized, no danger of deportation and detention.

Does anyone find anything wrong with this picture as well?

Refugees are beginning to return to Syria as the Damascus government clears out the last of the terrorists from all but Idlib Province. There, al Qaeda and the White Helmets are still active, holding a civilian population in terror, rounding up political prisoners, executing hundreds and planning more chemical attacks so that President Trump will protect their reign of terror.

This is the simple truth of it.

Why America Uses Terror

Few are aware to what extent the American military, the highest paid in the world, was decimated during the contrived War on Terror. Hundreds of thousands were maimed, more wasted away in endless “deployments” while tens of thousands killed themselves.

Pentagon funds are better spent on missiles, aircraft carriers, and mercenaries while Washington political insiders rake off billions in graft.

War had to change, false flag terror, fake aid and refugee groups, fake news and standoff missile attacks while sanctions, blockades and assassinations took their toll. Key to America’s war, or perhaps more appropriately, the war America is fighting on behalf of globalist interests, is a group known as the “White Helmets.”

A Syrian child, living under ISIS terror, is dragged off the street. Bleach is poured on his head by, of all things, a fake first responder wearing a strange white bicycle helmet. His parents are terrified, other children kidnapped in a similar war are found dead, mutilated after being hacked and bashed, then dragged around repeatedly before video teams from Reuters and Aljazeera, fake atrocity victims to justify American military action against Syria.

The child is then dragged into a local hospital where a doctor, held at gunpoint, pretends to examine the terrified child while filming goes on.

Sometimes the filmed victims are paid, even filmed coming back to life, other times real Sarin gas is used, smuggled into Syria from Georgia and Ukraine, according to Serena Shim of Press TV, by mercenaries working for Google Idea Groups, a US State Department contractor.

Serena Shim was murdered on October 19, 2014.

Ensuing chemical weapons investigators find themselves followed, their families threatened and risk financial ruin and smears of any imaginable kind, in particular, being arrested with child pornography placed on their computers.

Protecting the White Helmets, a terror organization now spreading around the world, the story we will be telling here, is what President Trump calls the “fake media.” Behind it all, of course, is Donald Trump himself and Benjamin Netanyahu.

Background

For weeks now, counter-terrorism organizations around the world have been engaged in efforts to identify members of an organization celebrated by Hollywood as among the most honored and revered of our time. We are, of course, speaking of the White Helmets, accused by Russia, Syria, Iran, Turkey, and independent investigators and journalists as a terrorist organization, the “Propaganda Ministry” for both ISIS and al Qaeda.

The White Helmets, a fake NGO (Non-Governmental Organization), totally funded by spy agencies from the US, Britain, Germany, Israel and Saudi Arabia, has, for years, staged chemical attacks killing thousands, staged fake bombing attacks and produced propaganda videos promoted by the mainstream media.

Time and time again, slam dunk proof has been submitted to the UN, the ICC at The Hague and to world media that this organization has committed unspeakable atrocities and its membership is a revolving door of terrorist leaders, crisis actors and Western paid propagandists.

Evacuated by Israel for Reassignment as “Terror Cells”

On July 22, 2018, the Associated Press published the following story about the alleged rescue of a very controversial organization known as the White Helmets. The story itself is beyond understanding, a travesty of falsehood, fakery and fabrication, a narrative that defies imagination.

BEIRUT (AP) — The Israeli military in coordination with its U.S. and European allies evacuated hundreds of Syrian rescue workers known as the White Helmets from near its volatile frontier with Syria, in a complex and first-of-a-kind operation.

The evacuees, who were hemmed in from one side by advancing hostile Syrian troops and from another by militants affiliated with the Islamic State group, were transported to Jordan, from where they are expected to be resettled in Europe and Canada in the coming weeks.

Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said Sunday that 422 White Helmets volunteers were evacuated, instead of the initial 800 cleared for the operation.

Israel’s military said the overnight operation was “an exceptional humanitarian gesture” at the request of the United States and European allies due to an “immediate threat to the (Syrians) lives.” It posted a video online showing its soldiers handing out water bottles to the evacuees.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in a separate video statement, said U.S. President Donald Trump, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and others had asked him to help evacuate the group’s members.

“These are people who saved lives and whose lives are now in danger. I authorized bringing them through Israel to other countries as an important humanitarian gesture,” Netanyahu said.

The U.S. State Department welcomed the rescue of “these brave volunteers” and cited the United Nations, Israel, and Jordan for helping with the operation.

The statement from spokeswoman Heather Nauert also called on Syria’s government and its ally Russia “to abide by their commitments, end the violence, and protect all Syrian civilians, including humanitarians such as the White Helmets, in areas formerly part of the southwest de-escalation zone and throughout Syria.”

The “evacuation” of the White Helmets is part of a larger program of building and organizing a blend of terror groups like the Gulanites that threaten Turkey, the newly deployed ISIS sent to Afghanistan by the CIA or the MEK, a bizarre terror cult the US has deployed against the people of Iran.

Decades ago it was the “contras” and the death squads that killed tens of thousands in El Salvador and up to 300,000 in Guatemala.

Coming to Your Neighborhood

Not all terrorists will continue their Saudi paid and American supported wars in the Middle East and South Asia. In order to foster compliance on the part of NATO and other governments, domestic false-flag terror attacks, even in the United States such as those that occurred on September 11, 2001, must continue.

The targets, Canada, Britain, France, Germany, and Italy will be foremost on the list with Iran blamed, of course. Such attacks are under planning right now, and the perpetrators who used to be smuggled through Kosovo into Italy and north, are now being flown into Europe and North America as “heroes.”

Normally heroes receive medals, awards, and parades but these heroes, the White Helmets, arrive by the dark of night with fake identities and fat checks from spy agencies. Their “heroic” efforts aren’t over, there are more children to kill, more chemical attacks to stage, more death, more deceit, more false flag terror and a war on Iran to bring to fruition.

ABOUT VT EDITORS

VT EditorsVeterans Today

VT Editors is a General Posting account managed by Jim W. Dean and Gordon Duff. All content herein is owned and copyrighted by Jim W. Dean and Gordon Duff

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The Americans’ battle in Yemen is reeling in Marib معركة الأميركيّين في اليمن تترنّح في مأرب

** Please scroll down for the ADJUSTED English Machine translation **

21/4/2021

معركة الأميركيّين في اليمن تترنّح في مأرب

د. وفيق إبراهيم

هناك مَن يعتقد أن هزيمة قوات هادي الموالية للسعودية في مارب هي أكبر من هزيمة للمشروع الأميركي – السعودي في اليمن.

فمأرب التي حقق أنصار الله تقدماً ملحوظاً في معظم اتجاهاتها ليس مجرد ناحية جغرافية تتمتع بمميزات بشرية ونفطية وموقع جغرافي هام وكتلة بشريّة لا بأس بها ودور أساسي في الحرب على اليمن من جهات أخرى.

لذلك من الواجب التنويه أن مأرب تجمع بين أهميات استراتيجية واقتصادية وتاريخية وزراعية ونفطية وقوة بشرية معتدلة 700 ألف نسمة وهي البوابة الى الشمال ومخازن النفط والغاز.

والمعروف عن أهلها شدّة بأسهم كما كانت تصفهم ملكة سبأ وحافظوا على هذا الوصف بتطبيق فعليّ مشكلين تلك الهراوة اليمنيّة التي لا تكل ولا تمل في دفاعها عن منطقتها مع كامل يمنها السعيد.

هذا جزء من تلك المعارك التي تدور رحاها على أرض مأرب وتثبت أن المعركة أميركية صرفة، والدليل أن خط الدفاع عن مأرب هو أميركي سعودي الى ان يتبين ان المنطقة ملأى بالنفط والغاز ما يؤكد الاهتمام الأميركي بها والتلاعب السعودي بها أسبابه نفطية وغازية وموقع استراتيجيّ على علاقة بضرورات استمرار الحرب على اليمن ومنع أي انتصار يمنيّ يصل بقبائلها إلى خط الحدود مع السعودية. وهذا يعني سقوط السعودية نفسها وتضعضع جزيرة العرب.

يتضح الاستنتاج أن الشماليين من أنصار الله نجحوا في السيطرة على القسم الأكبر من مأرب ولولا التدخل الأميركيّ السعوديّ للسيطرة عليها بكاملها وربطها بخط تعز. ما يعني سيطرة انصار الله على منطقة القاعدة المنتشرة في مأرب وتعز. والمعروف أن المنظمات الإرهابية مدعومة عسكرياً ومادياً من الفريق الأميركي السعوديّ ولولا وجود القاعدة في مأرب لكانت هذه المنطقة مع أنصار الله منذ مدة طويلة من الزمن.

يجب الانتباه أيضاً إلى أن مأرب هي آخر المعاقل الأميركية السعودية في حرب اليمن الأمر الذي يكشف مدى الاهتمام الخارجيّ بها وحرصهم على منع أنصار الله من الإمساك بها نهائياً، فمعركتها هي معركة الحرب الأكثر أهمية في اليمن وربما في جزيرة العرب.

بعد التقدّم الشماليّ في مأرب لا بدّ من تأكيد أن المعارك في اليمن لن تقف عند خطوط حمر.

لكنها أصبحت معروفة ومكشوفة أنها حرب الأميركيين على اليمن والحرب التي تشنها السعودية لمنع اليمن من تحقيق استقلاله وعنفوانه.

هناك جوانب أخرى لحرب مأرب فالانتصار فيها معنوي قتالي نفطي، ويشكل مادة أساسية لجعل حرب اليمن تترنّح من جهة وتصبح غير قادرة من جهة أخرى على الاستمرار بقوة خصوصاً أن مأرب هي بوابة الشمال.

اما النقاط الإضافية فحرب مأرب هي أم المعارك التي تسمح بتقدّم اليمانية نحو الحدود السعوديّة. وهذا يعني تلقائياً تقدّم القوات الإصلاح نحو جزيرة العرب. ما يطرح السؤال التالي: لماذا يدافع الأميركيون عن الهجمات اليمنية على السعودية ويحمون آبار النفط وقصور الملك خالد ومحطات البترول التي يقصفها.

هذه أسئلة كبيرة وتحتاج الى أجوبة غير موجودة حتى الآن، فها هي مواقع السعوديين تتعرّض لقصف يمني صائب يضع كامل إمكانات النفط والقصور السعوديّة تحت مرمى صواريخ عاديّة يمنيّة تنطلق وتخترق الحمايات الأميركيّة والسعوديّة وتسجل إصابات دقيقة في مرمى آل سعود وممتلكاتهم.

فلماذا يصمت الأميركيون والأوروبيون والسعوديون والإماراتيون والأردنيون؟

إنّها الحبكة في الإجابة عن هذه الأسئلة التي تؤكد أن كل هذه القوى الغربية تفرّ وتهرب لأسباب تقنيّة أما القوات السعودية فضعيفة ولا قدرة لديها على مجابهة أدوات الحرب اليمنية التي تسجل تطوراً من صواريخ بسيطة وقاذفات الى طائرات مسيّرة وصواريخ بالغة التعقيد.

أما التفسير الوحيد للقرار الغربي من حروب السعودية فهي رفض الانخراط في حروب إيرانية سورية ويمنية. وهذا يعني أنها حروب قاسية قابلة للاتساع من جزيرة العرب الى إيران وسورية ولبنان وربما الى أمكنة أكثر اتساعاً. حرب اليمن إلى أين؟ إنها نموذج لحروب إدلب واليمن المنتصر هو القابل لإلحاق هزيمة بالكتلة الغربية السعودية ومعها أحزاب الجنوب التي أصبحت ترفض المعارك عليها من السعودية وحلفائها.

The Americans’ battle in Yemen is reeling in Marib

21/4/2021

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Dr. Wafiq Ibrahim

There are those who believe that the defeat of Hadi’s pro-Saudi forces in Marib is greater than the defeat of the U.S.-Saudi project in Yemen.

Marib, who has made remarkable progress in most of its directions, is not just a geographical area with human and oil features, an important geographical location, a good human mass and a key role in the war on Yemen from otherparts.

It should therefore be noted that Marib combines strategic, economic, historical, agricultural, oil and a moderate human force of 700,000 people, which is the gateway to the north and oil and gas stores.

Its people are known for their severity, as the Queen of Sheba used to describe them, and they preserved this description in defence of their region and all Yemen.

Those battles that are taking place on the land of Marib is purely American, due to its strategic location related to the necessities of continuing the war on Yemen and prevent Yemeni victory which means the fall of Saudi Arabia itself and the weakening of the Arabian Peninsula. The line of defence of Marib is Saudi American until because the region is full of oil and gas, which confirms the American interest in it and Saudi manipulation.

The northerners, Ansar Allah, succeeded in controlling the greater part of Marib, and had it not been for the US-Saudi intervention, they would have controlled it in its entirety and linked it to Taiz line, and also took control of the al-Qaeda areas spread in Marib and Taiz. It is known that the terrorist organisations are supported militarily and materially by America and KSA. If it were not for the presence of al-Qaeda in Marib, this area would have been with Ansar Allah for a long time.

It should also be noted that Marib is the last American-Saudi stronghold in the Yemen war, which reveals the extent of foreign interest in it and their keenness to prevent Ansar Allah from seizing it permanently, as its battle is the most important war battle in Yemen and perhaps in the Arabian Peninsula. It must be confirmed that the fighting in Yemen will not stop at the red lines. The American war on Yemen is waged by Saudi Arabia to prevent Yemen from achieving its independence.

There are other aspects of the Marib war, as the victory in it is moral, combative and oil, and it constitutes an essential material to make the Yemen war falter on the one hand and become unable on the other hand to continue vigorously, especially since Marib is the gateway to the north.

Marib war is the mother of the battles that allow Ansar Allah to advance towards the Saudi border. This automatically means the advance of reform forces towards the Arabian Peninsula. This raises the following question: Why do the Americans defend the Yemeni attacks on Saudi Arabia and protect the oil wells, the palaces of King Khalid, and the oil oil plants?

These are big questions and need answers that do not yet exist, for here are the sites of the Saudis subjected to a sound Yemeni bombardment that puts the full potential of Saudi oil and palaces under the range of ordinary Yemeni missiles that launch and penetrate US and Saudi protections and record accurate injuries in the range of the House of Saud and their properties.

These are big questions and need answers that do not yet exist. The sites of the Saudis are exposed to correct Yemeni bombing, which puts the full potential of oil and Saudi palaces under the range of ordinary Yemeni missiles that launch and penetrate US and Saudi protections and record accurate injuries in Saudi Arabia.

Why do Americans, Europeans, Saudis, Emiratis and Jordanians shut up?

The answer to these questions confirms that all of these Western powers are fleeing for technical reasons. As for the Saudi forces, they are weak and incapable of confronting the Yemeni war tools, which are recording an evolution from simple missiles and bombers to drones and highly complex missiles.

As for the only explanation for the Western decision not to participate in the Saudi wars, it is that they are cruel wars that can expand from the Arabian Peninsula to Iran, Syria and Lebanon, and perhaps to more spacious places. Yemen war to where? It is a model for the Idlib wars, and Yemen is the one capable of inflicting a defeat on the Saudi western bloc, along with the southern Yemen parties, which have come to reject the battles against them by Saudi Arabia and its allies.

Putin delivers annual address to Federal Assembly

Putin delivers annual address to Federal Assembly

April 21, 2021

Putin’s speech comes amid a period of diplomatic confrontation with Western nations and a stand-off over the situation in Ukraine and Russian troop movements.

The address to the Federal Assembly is often used to announce major changes in Russian domestic and foreign policy.

This is the current live stream.

The full and complete transcript is now posted.

Presidential Address to the Federal Assembly

The President of Russia delivered the Address to the Federal Assembly. The ceremony took place at the Manezh Central Exhibition Hall.

April 21, 202113:20

Moscow

The ceremony was attended by members of the Federation CouncilState Duma deputies, members of the Government, the heads of the Constitutional and Supreme courts, regional governors, speakers of regional legislatures, the heads of traditional religious denominations and public activists.

* *

President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Members of the Federation Council, State Duma deputies,

Citizens of Russia,

Today’s Presidential Address to the Federal Assembly will be dedicated mostly to internal issues. These include, naturally, healthcare, social policy and the economy. Of course, I will say a few words about external affairs and literally a few words about security issues.

It stands to reason that I will begin with last year’s events, when our country and, actually, the entire world faced a new, previously unknown and extremely dangerous infection.

It that period, including during our meetings with experts and conversations with the leaders of many states, I often heard the following description of the situation: we are faced with total uncertainty. And this is how it really was.

I could see this from the information I received from the regions. The number of people who contracted the disease and needed to be rushed to hospital kept growing. Actually, all of you are very well aware of this. Many hospitals were filled to capacity and reported that they could run out of oxygen soon, including in intensive care units. Ventilators, protective masks and PPE were actually distributed by the piece. Shops were running out of basic products, such as cereals, butter and sugar, due to increased demand.

The epidemic was on the offensive. But although there was great concern, I personally had no doubt that we would pull through.

Citizens, society and the state acted responsibly and in unison. We rallied, managed to take preventive action, to create conditions that would reduce the risk of infection, and to provide medical personnel and citizens with personal protective equipment. We increased the number of hospital beds for coronavirus patients more than five times over, to 280,000 beds.

The brief outline of measures conceals the tremendous and intensive work of millions of people in all regions of the Russian Federation. I would like to cordially thank all of you for this. Everyone worked quickly, efficiently and conscientiously.

At that time and later on, we were analysing the situation practically non-stop. I recall vividly my visit to the hospital in Kommunarka. It was necessary to experience, to see at first hand the danger facing us and to assess the working conditions of medical specialists. They immediately found themselves in the thick of events and fought for every life, while risking their own.

Today, doctors, paramedics, medical nurses and members of ambulance teams are sitting here in this hall. Once again my heartfelt thanks to you and your colleagues from all the Russian regions.

Russian researchers made a real breakthrough, and Russia now has three reliable coronavirus vaccines. These and many other achievements of the past few years highlight the country’s growing science and technological potential.

I would like to thank everyone, every person who contributed to the fight against infection, including the workers at the plants manufacturing medications, medical equipment, personal protective equipment, and enterprises working 24 hours a day, housing and utility agencies, trade companies, the Russian business community that quickly converted entire sectors so that they could manufacture essential goods, civilian and military builders, agriculture workers who gathered a record-breaking harvest, one of the biggest in the country’s history, that is, over 130 million tonnes.

The personnel of law enforcement agencies and the special services continued to carry out their duty, and the Russian Armed Forces reliably ensured our country’s security.

I would like to underscore the selfless behaviour of people working for social services, orphanages, boarding schools, retirement homes and hospices who stayed and who continue to stay with their charges. You will certainly agree with me that, while analysing developments at these institutions, one feels proud of people who are carrying out their duty there in such a responsible manner. It could move you to tears. I would like to thank them once again.

I would also like to convey my sincere gratitude to school teachers and the lecturers at universities and other education institutions. You did everything possible to enable your students and pupils to gain knowledge and successfully pass their exams, with the involvement and support of their parents.

Russia’s cultural life continued unabated. Theatres, museums and concert halls remained open to audiences online thanks to modern technology. Everyone who works in this crucial sphere rose to the occasion.

Our people showed discipline and managed to observe, let’s face it, quite exhausting, but vital precautions. Thus, acting together, we have put up an effective barrier to the pandemic.

The people’s solidarity showed in concrete actions, in caring for the loved ones and in willingness to help people in need. Millions became volunteers and engaged in building person-to-person help routes. The nationwide We Are Together campaign brought together people from different walks of life and ages. As always during challenging times, our traditional religions stepped up to provide spiritual support to the society. I see the leaders of our religions here and I would like to bow deeply to you, thank you very much

Throughout history, our people have come out victorious and overcome trials thanks to unity. Today, family, friendship, mutual assistance, graciousness and unity have come to the fore as well.

Spiritual and moral values, which are already being forgotten in some countries, have, on the contrary, made us stronger. And we will always uphold and defend these values.

Colleagues,

The pandemic broke out at a time when the aftermath of the demographic shocks of the 1940s and 1990s converged. We realise that the current demographic situation is an emergency. Unfortunately, this is how things are. We must accept and admit it and do something about it based on our understanding of this situation.

Saving the people of Russia is our top national priority. This priority underlies the stipulations of the updated Constitution concerning the protection of the family, the important role parents play in bringing up their children, strengthening social guarantees, and further developing the economy, education and culture.

Our strategy is to return to sustainable population growth to make sure that the average life expectancy in Russia increases to 78 years in 2030.

Unfortunately, the statistics show us sad and disappointing numbers. We are even seeing a certain decline. It is clear what is happening because of the pandemic, but we will keep our strategic goals in this critical sphere unchanged.

I fully realise that this is no small feat, the more so as the coronavirus has not yet been completely defeated and remains a direct threat. We see the dramatic developments in many countries where the cases of infection continue to grow. We need to keep in check the defence barriers designed to slow down the spread of the virus along our external borders and within our country.

I would like to address all citizens of Russia once again. Friends, please stay alert. I am asking you to take care of yourselves and your loved ones and to comply with the doctors’ and sanitary services’ recommendations as closely as possible.

Vaccination is of crucial importance. I would like to ask the Government, the Healthcare Ministry and the heads of the regions to monitor this process on a daily basis. The opportunity to take the jab must be available everywhere, so that we achieve the so-called herd immunity by the autumn.

The attainment of this goal depends on everyone, on all our citizens. Please, I am asking all citizens of Russia once again to get vaccinated. This is the only way to stop this deadly epidemic. There is no alternative. The other choice is much worse: to contract the disease with unpredictable consequences.

I would like to say once again that the disease is still with us. But we must start thinking already now about healing the wounds it has inflicted and restoring people’s health.

During the peak periods, our hospitals and outpatient clinics had to reduce or even suspend scheduled visits. This increased the risk of the aggravation of chronic illnesses or the risk of missing the first signs of or correctly diagnosing new illnesses.

I would like to ask the Government, the Healthcare Ministry and the constituent entities of the Russian Federation to expand the system of medical check-ups and periodic screenings, taking into account the current epidemiological situation, and to relaunch them in full measure on July 1, 2021 for people of all ages. They must involve the largest number of people possible. This is why we will increase the supply of mobile medical diagnostic systems to the regions in the near future.

One of the targets of the coronavirus is the cardiovascular system. These diseases have always been the leading cause of death. Therefore, special attention during periodic screenings must be given to people with cardiovascular diseases. I would like to instruct the Government to take additional measures to prevent the diseases that are the main causes of premature death. As I have already mentioned, these are cardiovascular diseases plus malignant tumours and respiratory system diseases.

Hepatitis C claims many young lives. Decisions must be made to reduce this threat to the health of the nation to a minimum within 10 years.

To ensure that as many people as possible can restore their health at sanatoriums and health resorts, I propose that the 20 percent rebate programme for domestic travel is extended at least until the end of the year.

Children’s health is our special priority. Indeed, the foundation for good health for many years to come is laid during childhood. Children’s rest and recreation activities must be made as affordable as possible. In this regard, this year, I propose reimbursing half of what parents spend on their children’s summer camps.

In addition, we need to expand opportunities for student tourism. Already this year, we must launch several pilot projects, including accommodation on university campuses and in dormitories in other regions for students who travel around the country during the summer.

And, of course, we must reward the young people who have done well in academic competitions and in volunteer and creative initiatives as well as the projects operated by the Russia – Land of Opportunity platform. For them, the partial reimbursement programme for tourist vouchers will remain valid during the holidays, aka the high season. This is a ground-breaking decision.

I wish to thank all the parliamentary groups which supported the decision on the taxation of high incomes, or rather, a portion of high incomes. These proceeds will go to the dedicated Circle of Kindness fund and have already been released to help children affected by rare and serious diseases, to purchase expensive medicines and medical equipment, and to cover the costs of surgeries.

On April 28, we will celebrate Ambulance Worker Day which was established as a show of respect to those who arrive first to save lives. These specialists must be provided with all necessary supplies. Within the next three years, we will make another 5,000 new ambulances available to rural communities, urban-type localities and small towns, which will replace the ambulance fleet almost in full.

I want to emphasise that public healthcare authorities in many leading countries – we are well aware of it and, in fact, they themselves are saying so – were unable to deal with the challenges of the pandemic as effectively as we did in Russia. At the same time, global health care is on the cusp of a genuine revolution. This must be recognised and clearly seen. We cannot miss it.

The pandemic has exponentially sped up the introduction of telemedicine, artificial intelligence and new approaches in diagnostics, surgery, rehabilitation and the production of medicines everywhere. We must put these technologies at the service of the people of our country.

We must build our healthcare system around this ground-breaking technology, and keep an eye on pressing everyday problems in the process. As we are all aware, they abound, mostly in primary care. There must be no such thing as waiting lines, no hassle making a diagnostics appointment or a specialist doctor appointment, or obtaining prescriptions and sick leaves, for that matter. This has often come up in our discussions lately. The funds have been set side and allocated. It is time to move quickly and efficiently to make it happen.

We have a backlog to deal with in healthcare and other social sectors, including many technical, financial and managerial challenges. However, what people need is qualified and timely medical help. I propose reviewing public healthcare problems from this perspective at an expanded meeting of the State Council some time soon. We will prepare for it and hold it shortly.

I repeat: we have gained some fundamentally new experience in fulfilling our social commitments. During the pandemic, we made direct payments to families bringing up almost 28 million children, and they received their benefits without any unnecessary paperwork or other kinds of red tape – they got the money they needed and were entitled to automatically. I know Government members have been working on this, focusing deliberately, not without some failures, but they have made every effort to accomplish this task, and coped with it. This is great, this is a good example. This approach should become the norm at all levels of government.

This is the essence of the National Social Initiative, which was discussed at a recent joint meeting of the State Council Presidium and the Agency for Strategic Initiatives.

I am calling on the regional governors: it is your direct responsibility to organise the work of local clinics, daycare nurseries and schools, and employment centres, based on the daily needs of families, of each and every person. In many regions, I have seen with my own eyes that such work has already been launched in certain areas. This needs to be done everywhere and in all social sectors.

As soon as in 2022, we must introduce the ‘social treasury’ principles. This means that all federal benefits, pensions and other social payments and services will be provided and paid in a one-stop mode, without having to visit dozens of different agencies, but simply upon marriage, the birth of a child, retirement or other life milestones. Within three years, the vast majority of public and municipal services should be provided to Russian citizens remotely, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, that is, on an ongoing basis.

Separately, we will have to discuss child-support payments, which are a sensitive topic for many families. Unfortunately, this is a problem in our country. This procedure should not be humiliating for anyone. Most issues here need to be resolved remotely and, most importantly, in the interests of the affected party. A mother with a child should not have to camp on the doorstep of various authorities to collect official documents, carrying her baby in her arms, and this is what usually happens. A system of interagency communication needs to be built, with banks included, in such a way as to ensure the unconditional execution of court decisions on the recovery of child-support payments. The state is obliged to protect the rights of the child; this is what we are talking about. I will return to this topic again later.

Colleagues,

We understand the heavy toll that the pandemic has taken on people’s welfare. Statistics show the aggravating effects of this outbreak on social inequality and poverty. It has been a challenge for all countries around the world – remember, all countries, not only Russia, are experiencing the same consequences. Certainly, we should be primarily concerned about the situation in our own country.

We are now facing price hikes that are undercutting people’s incomes. Some urgent decisions have been made, of course, but we cannot solely rely on targeted and essentially directive measures. We remember potential outcomes. Back in the late 1980s and the 1990s in the Soviet Union, they resulted in empty store shelves. But today, even when the pandemic was at its worst, we did not allow the same thing to happen.

The Government’s goal is to create conditions that will be long-term and which, I want to stress this part, colleagues, can, thanks to market mechanisms (which we have), guarantee the predictability of prices and quality replenishment of the domestic market. Nobody is saying that we will be setting prices from the top. There’s no need to muddy the waters and scare people. There are market regulatory mechanisms and they must be employed – promptly and to the extent required and appropriate to a specific situation in the economy and social sphere. We need to stimulate investment activity by reducing business risks. The two are not mutually exclusive.

Surely, the main goal right now is to ensure that people’s real incomes grow – that is, to restore them and secure their further growth. As I said, we need tangible changes in our fight against poverty.

Before anything else, the Government must provide direct support to families with children who are experiencing hardships. This has been our consistent policy and we will continue to pursue it.

We already have a system of benefits paid to parents of one or two children from the time the children are born and until they reach the age of three. Families with incomes below two subsistence minimums per family member are entitled to such benefits. The average monthly amount paid across the country is 11,300 rubles per child. Seventy-eight Russian regions pay benefits for the third child, also 11,300 rubles on average.

Please note that we are making consistent progress in this area, step by step. Last year, we introduced benefits for children aged three to seven. They range from 5,650 to 11,300 rubles per month depending on the region.

I instruct the Government to develop, by July 1, a comprehensive system of support for families with children. Our goal is to minimise the risk of poverty for such families.

But a number of new decisions need to be taken immediately, already today. It is always difficult for a single parent to raise a child. There are plenty of reasons for that. And this is not about the reasons but about supporting children. It is particularly difficult when a single-parent family is having financial problems, especially when children start going to school and family expenses objectively rise.

In particular, we must support single-parent families, where a mother or a father is bringing up a child alone, and only one of the parents is registered on the birth certificate – sorry to be speaking of such mundane things, but this is a fact of life – or the parents have divorced and one of them has the right to child-support payments. Therefore, as of July 1 this year, all children in such families aged between 8 and 16, inclusively, will receive a benefit. The national average of such benefit will be 5,650 rubles.

Of course, we must also help women who are expecting a baby and who have financial problems. It is extremely important for a mother-to-be to get support from the state and society, so that they can keep their pregnancy and know that they will receive help in raising and bringing up their child.

I propose approving a monthly subsidy for women who register at a maternity centre during early pregnancy and who have financial problems. The average subsidy for them will be 6,350 rubles a month.

Next, the sick pay for taking care of a child who falls ill depends on the employment record, which is correct, on the whole, and fair. However, young women receive much smaller sick leave payments. We have discussed this issue at the State Council, and it has been raised by the United Russia. We need to adopt legal decisions on this matter without delay, so that payments for taking care of a sick child aged up to 7 years inclusively are approved at 100 percent of the parent’s salary as soon as this year.

You understand what this means. The majority of those in this room know that the longer the employment record the larger the sick pay. Women who have a long work record usually receive full sick pay, but they usually do not have children at their age. Those who have children do not receive full pay. We must definitely help those who are expecting a baby.

I would also like to remind you that we have expanded and extended the maternity capital programme up until 2026. This benefit will now be paid already for the first child. We could not afford this before. The maternity capital has been adjusted to inflation and is almost 640,000 rubles

Free hot meals for all primary school children were approved as of January 1, 2020, and this measure has become a great help for families.

I would like to point out that all our decisions were designed to support our people. I know that many and very many people have financial problems now. The labour market and real disposable income of the people will be certainly restored, and we will move on. This has not happened yet. Therefore, I suggest approving one more one-off payment for the families that have school children, namely, 10,000 rubles per schoolchild. Moreover, this payment will also be made for the children who will only start school this year. We will transfer the money in mid-August, so that parents can get their children ready for school.

The updated Constitution of Russia includes clauses on demographic development, and protection of the family and childhood. They should be implemented in practice at all levels of government. I propose including a section aimed at supporting young people in each national project.

Friends,

During the pandemic, many young doctors and nurses, recent graduates as well as residents and students of medical universities worked courageously in the so-called red zones, joining their senior colleagues. In that extraordinary situation, teachers, schoolchildren, college and university students continued to teach and study, to have exams. Young family members supported their parents and older relatives. The youth of Russia proved to be extremely worthy during that period of trials. We can be proud of them.

We will do everything to open up as many life opportunities as possible for the younger generation. Their journey certainly begins at school, and I am sure that school will always be a second home for children; a new home, comfortable and modern.

Under the existing federal programme and with additional resources provided by the VEB Development Bank, we will build at least 1,300 new schools for more than a million children by the end of 2024. We will also purchase at least 16,000 school buses over the next four years. All school buses must be modern and safe.

Classroom teachers have been receiving a monthly addition to their salaries since last year. A very necessary and, I am sure, fair decision. I remember how we held discussions on this matter last year.

However, I have received requests, letters from teachers in secondary vocational institutions who say they have been forgotten. This is actually true. Justice must be restored. We have to fix this and establish the same additional payment of 5,000 rubles for supervisors of educational groups at technical schools and colleges.

I propose allocating an additional 10 billion rubles in the next two years for major repairs and technical equipment of our pedagogical universities. I ask the Government to pay close attention to up-to-date training of future teachers. The future of Russia largely depends on them.

Furthermore, school teaching teams should be expanded with teaching assistants, mentors and counsellors, whose job will be to organise exciting projects for children at schools.

It is very important that our young people should look to and be inspired by the achievements and victories of our outstanding ancestors and contemporaries, by their love for our Motherland and aspiration to make a personal contribution to its development. Children should have the opportunity to explore the national history and the multinational culture, our achievements in science and technology, literature and art in advanced formats. You know, I still open certain school textbooks occasionally and am surprised at what I see there – as if what is written there has nothing to do with us at all. Who writes such textbooks? Who approves them? It is unbelievable. They mention everything, the ‘second front’ and a lot of other facts, but not the Battle of Stalingrad – how is that possible? Amazing! I do not even want to comment.

I propose allocating an additional 24 billion rubles within the next three years to renovate cultural centres, libraries and museums in rural areas and small historical towns. This is another crucial area.

It is important to resume the activities of the Knowledge Society – we all remember well what it is – based on a modern digital platform. It seems to have been operational lately, but no one seems to notice it is there, either. Also, in order to support projects in culture, art and creative activities, we will set up a Presidential fund for cultural initiatives. Already this year, we will use its competitive grants to finance over 1,500 creative teams.

Colleagues,

A month from now, 11th grade students will be taking exams. Based on the results, most of them, about 60 percent, will enrol in universities and have their tuition covered from the budget. It can be safely stated that practically no country in the world apart from Russia has this kind of broad and free access to higher education.

In the next two years, we will make an additional 45,000 state-funded places available at our universities. At least 70 percent of them will go to the regions which need university graduates.

Starting this year, at least 100 universities in the constituent entities of our Federation will receive grants in the amount of 100 million rubles or more for opening student technoparks and business incubators, upgrading academic and laboratory facilities, and running training programmes. All state universities will be eligible for this support, including the ones that train future teachers, medical doctors, transport and culture workers. I am confident that the young generation of Russians, Russian scientists, will make their names known in the meaningful research projects that are yet to come.

This year was declared Science and Technology Year in our country. We realise that science is absolutely key in the modern world. Until 2024, Russia will allocate 1.63 trillion rubles from the federal budget alone for civil, including fundamental, research. But that is not all.

We are about to launch ground-breaking programmes in areas that are critical to our country. They will be given the status of nationwide projects. I would like to discuss some of them separately just to give you a sense.

First, we must have a solid and reliable shield to give us sanitary and biological safety. We now understand what it is about. It is imperative to ensure Russia’s independence in the production of the entire range of vaccines and pharmaceutical substances, including medications against infections that are resistant to the current generation of antibiotics. Importantly, this must be achieved with the maximum engagement of Russian-made equipment and domestic components.

In the event of an infection as dangerous as the coronavirus, or, God forbid, even more dangerous, Russia must be prepared to develop its own test systems within four days, precisely four days, and to create an efficacious domestic vaccine and start its mass production as soon as possible. These are the goals that we are setting for ourselves. The timeframe for achieving these goals is 2030. But the sooner we get there, the better.

Second, we need new comprehensive approaches to the development of our energy sector, including new solutions for nuclear generation in the promising areas of hydrogen energy and energy storage.

Third, we must find answers to the climate change challenges, adjust our agriculture, industry, the housing and utilities sector and the entire infrastructure to them, create a carbon utilisation sector, bring down emissions and introduce strict control and monitoring measures.

Over the next 30 years, the cumulative emissions in Russia must be smaller than in the EU. It is an ambitious goal, considering the size of our country and the specific features of its geography, climate and economic structure. However, I have no doubt whatsoever that it is a perfectly realistic goal in light of our research and technological potential.

Our new energy and pharmaceutical sectors and the solution of climate problems must provide a powerful boost to a comprehensive modernisation of all economic sectors and the social sphere. It is a direct path to the creation of modern and well-paid jobs.

The efforts taken by each level of government, business, development institutions and the Russian Academy of Sciences must have in view the main, central task: to improve the quality of life for our people. I would like to point out that our position on environmental protection is a matter of principle in this respect, and it will definitely remain unchanged.

The dangers of the alternative position have been recently exemplified by the events in Norilsk, Usolye-Sibirskoye and several other places. We will certainly help the people who live there, but we must also preclude a repetition of such environmental disasters.

I would like to ask those responsible to accelerate the adoption of a law on the financial responsibility of enterprise owners for clearing up the accumulated pollution and for the reclamation of industrial sites. This is a very simple approach. Here it is: if you have benefited from polluting the environment, clean up after yourself. We must act harshly. Rosprirodnadoz [the Federal Service for Supervision of Natural Resources] and other regulatory authorities must do their jobs.

I would like to add that the “polluter pays” principle must also be employed in full in the waste disposal sector to ensure transition to the so-called closed-loop economy. With this aim in view, we must launch a mechanism of extended producers and importers’ responsibility for the management of products and packaging wastes as soon as this year.

I also propose marking environmental payments to the federal budget. I know that experts and financial specialists do not like such special marks, but I see this as a vital sphere of our activity. We can make an exception in this case, and invest these funds in clearing up accumulated pollution and improving the environment.

Also, as I said, the amount of hazardous emissions in Russia’s 12 largest industrial centres must be reduced by 20 percent by 2024. We have already discussed this. Obviously, this goal must be accomplished through a comprehensive modernisation of the industrial sector, the housing and utilities sector, transport and energy.

Moreover, I propose expanding the emission quota system to all Russian cities with major air quality problems and introduce strict liability for non-compliance with environmental regulations. Of course, this requires transparent monitoring.

We will definitely support the efforts of businesses to upgrade their facilities up to current environmental standards. For example, upgrading will begin this year at aluminium plants in Bratsk, Irkutsk, Krasnoyarsk and Novokuznetsk based on the state guarantee mechanism. I will later name other cities and towns in other contexts but it does not mean that our work is limited to those areas. They only serve as examples.

Colleagues,

Last year, we allocated unprecedented resources for supporting the economy. Among other things, we managed to preserve over 5 million jobs through subsidised loans for wage payments. I want to stress that this programme succeeded but it succeeded precisely because businesses acted responsibly and did everything they could to keep their employees. We could see that.

Unfortunately, it was not possible to prevent layoffs completely. I understand how hard it is for those who lost their jobs. The Government was instructed to ensure that the labour market recovers by the end of the year. Still, this problem must be solved sooner so that people can have a stable income again. The Government will be encouraging entrepreneurial initiatives and stimulate private investments that create new jobs.

As you know, last year, social insurance contributions for small and medium-sized businesses were reduced by half, from 30 to 15 percent. This decision will remain in force permanently and is not subject to review.

I instruct the Government to present, within the next month, additional proposals on supporting small and medium-sized businesses, such as tax incentives, accessible loans and expanding product distribution and sales, including to major state-run companies.

As for other decisions in the economic sphere, I would like to mention the following.

First, we have already scrapped many archaic norms and requirements in construction and other fields and discontinued many unnecessary control inspections, but we also need to increase the momentum to achieve substantive, clear and tangible results in improving the business climate. For example, building a turnkey factory in Russia should be faster, more economically efficient and easier than in other regions of the world, including countries with developed economies.

Furthermore, we need to simplify the working conditions for non-commodity exporters. We have certainly been pursuing this policy line for a few years now, but we still need to remove all excessive restrictions in forex control for these exporters. This is one of the problems. The new procedure should start functioning in July. We have discussed this matter more than once. All amendments to the legislation must be adopted as quickly as possible during the spring session.

Secondly, the talent of an entrepreneur is primarily the talent of a creator, an aspiration to change life for the better, to create new jobs. The state will definitely support this attitude.

In the modern world where the market situation sometimes changes almost every day, businesses have to deal with high risks, especially when investing in long-term projects. To address this, we will be adjusting the entire private investment support system. We will evaluate how effective the projects are by the new products, services, and technologies they provide people with and how they improve the potential of Russia and each individual region.

The Special Investment Contract mechanism has already been improved; we have implemented a new instrument – Investment Protection and Promotion Agreements. We have consolidated development institutions on the basis of VEB. Their job is to reduce the risks for investing private capital, to help in the creation of new markets and investment mechanisms, the same as with the Project Finance Factory mechanism already in place. It is currently supporting more than 40 commercial projects with a total investment of 3 trillion rubles.

I am waiting for proposals from the Government on the implementation of the ideas proposed in March at a meeting with Russian businesses. Colleagues, you are well aware of this.

Third, we are making all major decisions concerning the economy through a dialogue with the business community. This is the practice established over many years. Of course, we have the right to expect that the auxiliary financial instruments and support mechanisms will bring the most desired result, which is converting profit into investment and development.

There is an important thing I want to say although it is nothing new to businesses. They know it already. The corporate sector is expected to make a record profit this year, despite all the problems that we are dealing with. Despite these problems, this is the real picture. We will take note of how this profit will be used and, based on the annual results, we may decide to calibrate the tax legislation. I want to see specific proposals from the Government. Off the record, I should note: some withdraw dividends while others invest in the development of their companies and entire industries. We will be encouraging those who invest.

Last year, we substantially increased budget expenditure while managing to maintain the stability of state finances. The Government and the Central Bank must continue to pursue a responsible financial policy. Ensuring macroeconomic stability and containing inflation within set parameters is an extremely important task. I assume that it will definitely be accomplished.

At the same time, thanks to our budget capacity and our reserves, we can allocate more funds to support investment in infrastructure and provide regions with new development instruments. Launching these instruments will require the law to be amended. I expect that all parliamentary parties – A Just Russia, the Liberal Democratic Party, the Communist Party and United Russia – will uphold these amendments.

In this regard, I want to thank all constructive public forces in the country for their responsible and patriotic attitude during this difficult epidemic. These are not just meaningless words because it was this attitude and its practical significance that helped all of us preserve the balance and stability of Russia’s government and political system. This is always important but it is especially relevant because we are preparing for the elections to the State Duma and other government bodies, considering the extensive work we will have to carry out. I hope that this competitive mindset that unites us in the face of common goals will persist.

Colleagues,

The country is developing and moving forward, but this is only taking place when the regions of the Russian Federation are developing. A striving of the heads of constituent entities to make their regions successful and self-sufficient must be and will be encouraged in every way.

We will support those who assume responsibility and launch constructive projects. I am confident that every Russian region has huge potential. To help make positive and productive use of this potential, what must we reduce first of all? The governors know what I am referring to: we must reduce the debt burden. These topics must be thoroughly discussed once again.

I ask the Government to submit by June 1 the proposals on ensuring long-term stability of regional and municipal finance and on increasing the regions’ self-sufficiency. We will discuss them in summer at a State Council meeting, and we will do so with due regard for the priority decisions about which I will tell you now.

First of all, we must help regions with large commercial debts. Here is what I suggest: the amount of a region’s commercial debt that exceeds 25 percent of the given region’s own revenues will be replaced with budgetary loans that will mature in 2029.

In addition, I propose restructuring the budgetary loans, yes, budgetary loans that were issued to the regions last year for taking measures to combat the pandemic. I believe that this would be fair. I would like to remind everyone that these loans will mature in two months, on July 1. I suggest extending them to 2029 as well.

I would like to emphasise that the restructuring of accumulated debts should be used as a mechanism of increasing the self-sufficiency of regional economies, especially considering that we will be offering a fundamentally new development tool to our constituent entities. I am referring to the so-called budgetary infrastructure loans with an interest rate of not more than 3 percent per annum and with maturity in 15 years. We intend to allocate a total of at least 0.5 trillion rubles, that is, 500 billion rubles of such infrastructure loans by the end of 2023.

Regional debt restructuring must be based on the concept of justice, which has always been the case, actually. Some constituent entities have large accumulated commercial debts, while other entities did not take out many loans. The latter may feel neglected in this case. This will not do, and we will not permit this. We will support those who have always pursued and continue to pursue a balanced financial policy. The principle of the distribution of infrastructure loans will be as follows: the fewer debts a region had, the more it will be able to receive in infrastructure loans.

We are one country. All levels of government and business must work to one end. Debt restructuring and an innovative investment resource in the form of infrastructure loans will allow us to expand the planning horizon and to launch new solutions that are tied in with the implementation of national projects, sector-specific strategies and a comprehensive plan for upgrading the backbone infrastructure.

Federal infrastructure loans are a powerful resource, but whether they will help us get ahead or attract private investment hugely depends on what regional management teams do and on their ability to conduct an open and candid dialogue with businesses, investors, and, of course, primarily, individuals.

The infrastructure projects in the regions must be implemented, primarily, in the interests of the people, and serve as investment in the creation of new jobs and in promoting the well-being of millions of Russian households and securing the future of our children. The priorities will be building motorways and bypasses in urban areas, upgrading the housing and utilities sector infrastructure and the public transport system, as well as conducting integrated development of territories and building tourist facilities.

Please note that the infrastructure and budget loans will be fully under the control of the Federal Treasury and will be provided exclusively for specific projects that have been thoroughly analysed by experts at the federal level. While we are at it, I would like to say something to regional leaders and the Government: listen, let’s work in a rhythmic and business-like manner. I do not want to use harsh or rude language at this rostrum, but things must be done on time and projects must be prepared, not just pictures shown to the Government. In turn, the Government must quickly process the projects and help the regions deal with things they have problems dealing with. You must help your colleagues, you understand that? Not trash what they have brought to you and say they did a bad job. Some of them are unable to do what you ask of them. Help them, and then things will be on the path forwards.

The scale of the projects may vary, but most importantly, as I said, they must benefit our people and open up new opportunities. For example, in conjunction with our major companies and using the proposed mechanism, the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Area will begin the construction of the Northern Latitudinal Railway. This is the railway that will spur the development of the richest resources of the Arctic. This project has been in the works for a long time now, and it’s time to launch it, since we can do so now. For example, as a result, Nizhny Novgorod will be able to continue building the metro and to start renovating the city centre. Chelyabinsk, another city with a million-plus residents, will also have the opportunity to upgrade its transport system through a long-standing metro construction project. I am aware of other similar projects in Krasnoyarsk and other regions.

And, of course, the construction of new facilities must be at a qualitatively higher level. I want the Government to draft a clear step-by-step plan for the end-to-end and widespread use of digital design, and the production and introduction of cutting-edge energy-efficient materials. This is also important if we want to tackle the climate and environmental challenges.

Large-scale infrastructure development sets fundamentally new tasks before the construction industry. In the difficult past year, it worked smoothly and built over 80 million square metres of housing. This is a good result. The more we build, the more affordable housing will there be for Russian families.

Therefore, we have an ambitious goal. We have already discussed it as well and this ambitious goal has not disappeared– we plan to build 120 million square metres of housing every year. That said, we must certainly envisage a special mechanism for supporting private housing construction.

As for large-scale construction, the DOM.RF development institute will attract financial resources through the placement of bonds. This is a tried and tested mechanism that generally works well. These resources must go to developers as targeted loans.

I would like to emphasise that federal budget subsidies will allow DOM.RF to issue loans to developers at a minimal annual rate of about 3–4 percent. The construction of residential neighbourhoods in Tula, Tyumen, the Sakhalin Region and Kuzbass will be pilot projects for developing this model.

Improvement of cities and towns and housing construction growth play a major role in the development of the regions. We must take care of the urgent, daily problems of local residents. Quite a few Russian families live in areas connected to gas networks but their homes still have no access to gas for some reason. It seems the pipe is there but there is no gas at home.

I would like to ask the Government to work out, in cooperation with the regions, a clear-cut plan for bringing gas to such households. In this context, I support United Russia’s initiative, notably, that people do not have to pay for laying gas pipes directly to the border of their land plots in a residential area.

As I have already said, the Government must analyse all details in cooperation with Gazprom and other companies and agencies that work in this area to prevent any setbacks. Otherwise, I will say something from this rostrum and people will be waiting for it but because you don’t put some squiggles or commas in the right place everything will get bogged down again. This is unacceptable, and I will check on it myself, so please pay attention. Mosoblgaz and other companies must understand what they must do, in what timeframe and how much money they have at their disposal.

The goal is certainly more extensive. We must offer every region our solutions on public access to reliable and clean energy sources. This may be electricity, including from renewable sources, or environmentally friendly use of coal, which is also an option in the modern world, pipeline or liquefied gas. I instruct the regional heads to prepare, in coordination with the Government, detailed plans of action and start implementing them next year.

For example, in Kamchatka we must envisage the creation of local gas-receiving infrastructure to ensure reliable long-term gas supplies to the residents and companies of the Kamchatka Territory.

Colleagues,

We will not only give fundamentally new development tools to the regions, but will also directly invest federal resources into the settlement of the worst systemic problems, which will have a compound effect on boosting the regions’ growth and improving the quality of people’s lives.

We will begin with allocations from the National Welfare Fund for building mainline motorways. First of all, we should finance the ongoing construction of the Moscow-Kazan high-speed road and, more than that, extend it all the way to Yekaterinburg, completing this project within three years.

This way, together with the existing Moscow-St Petersburg high-speed road and the Central Ring Road, this will ensure safe high-speed motorway transit across the entire European part of Russia, from the Baltic Sea to the Urals, by 2024.

However, it is not enough to simply connect the end-of-line destinations. What good will this do, if it does not change anything about life in villages or small towns but only gives the people there an opportunity to watch high-speed trains and vehicles rush past? The backbone infrastructure must definitely lead to the development of all the territories where it has been built, giving rise to the development of a modern regional network.

The constituent entities will now be able to use infrastructure loans to speed up the implementation of these construction projects. But in their development plans, our colleagues should remember and take into account that the federal and regional mainlines must function as a unified system in the interests of our citizens, businesses and regions. In this way, the infrastructure loans and the resources of the National Welfare Fund will be working for the benefit of all Russian regions.

The same goes for our new national project in the tourist sphere. A programme of easy loans will be launched soon to finance the construction and renovation of hotels and other tourist infrastructure. The interest rate on these loans will be 3–5 percent as well, and the loans will mature in 15 years.

There are many other pilot projects. I will only mention some of them: the development of Sheregesh, the leading mountain ski resort in Kuzbass; the creation of a yachting resort in the Bay of Balaklava in Sevastopol; and the development of the tourist industry on the Altai and in the Kaliningrad Region.

The infrastructure loans project will give a new impetus to entire tourist clusters. In particular, several regions in Central Russia will be able to modernise and expand the Golden Ring route at a fundamentally new level, realising the tourist potential of small towns such as Tarusa, Palekh, Murom, Gorokhovets, Tutayev and Borovsk. Development projects will be launched in the Volga Region cities, the Crimean resorts, the Black Sea and Pacific coast areas, as well as in our resort towns such as Staraya Russa in the Novgorod Region and Kavkazskiye Mineralnye Vody in the Caucasus, including its gem, Kislovodsk.

Russia is a hospitable country that is open to its good friends. You surely remember what happened during the 2018 football championships. As soon as the epidemiological situation allows, we will lift the remaining restrictions and millions of tourists from all over the world will come to Russia again. We have a practical task at hand: to ensure that e-visas for travel to Russia are available remotely and without undue formalities within a matter of four days in the majority of countries.

Colleagues,

The meaning and purpose of Russia’s policy in the international arena – I will just say a few words about this to conclude my address – is to ensure peace and security for the well-being of our citizens, for the stable development of our country. Russia certainly has its own interests we defend and will continue to defend within the framework of international law, as all other states do. And if someone refuses to understand this obvious thing or does not want to conduct a dialogue and chooses a selfish and arrogant tone with us, Russia will always find a way to defend its stance.

At the same time, unfortunately, everyone in the world seems to be used to the practice of politically motivated, illegal economic sanctions and to certain actors’ brutal attempts to impose their will on others by force. But today, this practice is degenerating into something even more dangerous – I am referring to the recently exposed direct interference in Belarus in an attempt to orchestrate a coup d’état and assassinate the President of that country. At the same time, it is typical that even such flagrant actions have not been condemned by the so-called collective West. Nobody seemed to notice. Everyone pretends nothing is happening.

But listen, you can think whatever you like of, say, Ukrainian President [Viktor] Yanukovych or [Nicolas] Maduro in Venezuela. I repeat, you can like or dislike them, including Yanukovych who almost got killed, too, and removed from power via an armed coup. You can have your own opinion of President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko’s policy. But the practice of staging coups d’état and planning political assassinations, including those of high-ranking officials – well, this goes too far. This is beyond any limits.

Suffice it to mention the admission made by the detained participants in the conspiracy about a planned siege of Minsk, including plans to block the city infrastructure and communications, and a complete shutdown of the entire power system in the capital of Belarus! This actually means they were preparing a massive cyberattack. What else could it be? You know, you cannot just do it all with one switch.

Clearly, there is a reason why our Western colleagues have been stubbornly rejecting Russia’s numerous proposals to establish an international dialogue on information and cyber security. We have come up with these proposals many times. They avoid even discussing this matter.

What if there had been a real attempt at a coup d’état in Belarus? After all, this was the ultimate goal. How many people would have been hurt? What would have become of Belarus? Nobody is thinking about this.

Just as no one was thinking about the future of Ukraine during the coup in that country.

All the while, unfriendly moves towards Russia have also continued unabated. Some countries have taken up an unseemly routine where they pick on Russia for any reason, most often, for no reason at all. It is some kind of new sport of who shouts the loudest.

In this regard, we behave in an extremely restrained manner, I would even say, modestly, and I am saying this without irony. Often, we prefer not to respond at all, not just to unfriendly moves, but even to outright rudeness. We want to maintain good relations with everyone who participates in the international dialogue. But we see what is happening in real life. As I said, every now and then they are picking on Russia, for no reason. And of course, all sorts of petty Tabaquis are running around them like Tabaqui ran around Shere Khan – everything is like in Kipling’s book – howling along in order to make their sovereign happy. Kipling was a great writer.

We really want to maintain good relations with all those engaged in international communication, including, by the way, those with whom we have not been getting along lately, to put it mildly. We really do not want to burn bridges. But if someone mistakes our good intentions for indifference or weakness and intends to burn or even blow up these bridges, they must know that Russia’s response will be asymmetrical, swift and tough.

Those behind provocations that threaten the core interests of our security will regret what they have done in a way they have not regretted anything for a long time.

At the same time, I just have to make it clear, we have enough patience, responsibility, professionalism, self-confidence and certainty in our cause, as well as common sense, when making a decision of any kind. But I hope that no one will think about crossing the “red line” with regard to Russia. We ourselves will determine in each specific case where it will be drawn.

I will now say, just as I always do during the annual addresses to the Federal Assembly, that the improvement and qualitative strengthening of Russia’s Armed Forces continues on a regular basis. In particular, special attention will be given to the development of military education both at military school and academies and at military training centres at civilian universities.

By 2024, the share of modern weapons and military equipment in the armed forces will reach nearly 76 percent, which is a very good indicator. This share in the nuclear triad will be over 88 percent before this year is out.

Standing on combat duty are the latest Avangard hypersonic intercontinental missile systems and the Peresvet combat laser systems, and the first regiment armed with Sarmat super-heavy intercontinental ballistic missiles is scheduled to go on combat duty in late 2022.

The number of combat air systems with Kinzhal hypersonic missiles, and warships armed with precision hypersonic weapons such as Kinzhal that I mentioned, and with the Kalibr missiles, is increasing. The Tsirkon hypersonic missiles will be put on combat duty soon. Work is underway on other modern combat systems, including Poseidon and Burevestnik, in accordance with the development plans of the Armed Forces.

As the leader in the creation of new-generation combat systems and in the development of modern nuclear forces, Russia is urging its partners once again to discuss the issues related to strategic armaments and to ensuring global stability. The subject matter and the goal of these talks could be the creation of an environment for a conflict-free coexistence based on the security equation, which would include not only the traditional strategic armaments, such as intercontinental ballistic missiles, heavy bombers and submarines, but – I would like to emphasise this – all offensive and defensive systems capable of attaining strategic goals regardless of the armament.

The five nuclear countries bear special responsibility. I hope that the initiative on a personal meeting of the heads of state of the permanent members of the UN Security Council, which we proposed last year, will materialise and will be held as soon as the epidemiological situation allows.

Russia is always open to broad international cooperation. We have consistently advocated the preservation and strengthening of the key role of the United Nations in international affairs, and we try to provide assistance to the settlement of regional conflicts and have already done a great deal to stabilise the situation in Syria and to launch a political dialogue in Libya. As you know, Russia played the main role in stopping the armed conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh.

It is on the basis of mutual respect that we are building relations with the absolute majority of the world’s countries: in Asia, Latin America, Africa and many European countries. We are consistently expanding as a priority contacts with our closest partners in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, BRICS, the Commonwealth of Independent States, and our allies in the Collective Security Treaty Organisation.

Our common projects in the Eurasian Economic Union are aimed at ensuring economic growth and the wellbeing of our people. There are new, interesting projects here, such as the development of transport-and-logistics corridors. I am sure they will become a reliable infrastructure backbone for large-scale Eurasian partnership. The Russian ideas of this broad, open association are already being put into practice, in part, via alignment with other integration processes.

All these projects are not just geopolitical ideas but strictly practical instruments for resolving national development tasks.

Colleagues,

I began today’s Address with urgent healthcare issues, and concluding it, I would like to say the following. Nobody in the world knew what misfortune we would have to face. However, we, citizens of Russia, have already done much and will do all we can to counter the threat of the epidemic. Our country has reliable resources for this. We created them in healthcare, science, education and industry in previous years.

However, we must definitely move forward. We have mapped out national development tasks. Naturally, the challenge of the epidemic has made objective adjustments to our work. Today’s Address contains instructions on demography and family support, as well as on efforts to fight poverty, increase incomes, create jobs, improve the business environment and raise state management to a new level.

I would like to ask the Government to focus on these tasks in preparing new initiatives on Russia’s socioeconomic development and instruct it to present them by July 1 of this year.

What do I have in mind? Doing everyday work, we must certainly not forget about our strategic development goals and our national development goals, and we must improve the mechanisms for reaching them.

We will discuss the Government’s proposals with the participation of the relevant State Council commissions, our business associations, experts and the Civic Chamber. Following such a broad discussion, we will make final decisions on further financial and organisational actions at the meeting of the Council for Strategic Development and National Projects.

Now I would like to address all citizens of Russia once again to say that we will do everything in our power to achieve the goals set. I am sure we will move forward together and accomplish all the tasks that we have set for ourselves.

Thank you very much for your attention.

The National Anthem of the Russian Federation is played.

OPCW NATO Klan Strips Syria Voting Rights in The Hague

MIRI WOOD 

OPCW investigators afraid of armed terrorists.

OPCW NATO klansmen and their terrified house servants in The Hague, stripped Syria of its voting rights on Wednesday 21 April. The threat was originally launched by P3 member France, at the monthly anti-Syria chemical file meeting of the NATO klan ruling the UN, on 6 April. A whopping six days later, the UN-OPCW or the OPCW-UN published its Nuremberg crimes against humanity propaganda piece, via its IIT which is some type of geometric conversion of its FFM, as IIT is twice now twice the length of the criminally lying FFM.

Lest anyone forget, or have been thoroughly brainwashed into believing the crossword puzzle when the clue is “peacekeeping force,” NATO stands for North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Its stenography journalists keep to the acronym, to help prevent westerners — who used to learn geography via war — from looking at a map.

OPCW is run by the NATO klan.
The first two letters of the acronym, NATO, stand for “North Atlantic.”

The NATO klansmen took over the OPCW when Dick Cheney sent John Bolton to threaten then OPCW head Jose Bustani, and then to threaten other members unless he was removed — because he refused to lie about Iraq and WMD (a similar reason as when Cheney had CIA agent Valerie Plame outted; her husband, former ambassador Joe Wilson had refused to lie about Iraq and yellow cake.).

Another reminder: THE OPCW INVESTIGATORS NEVER ENTERED KHAN SHEIKHOUN, LTAMENAH, NOR SARAQIB BECAUSE AL QAEDA OCCUPYING THOSE AREAS OF SYRIA WERE A SECURITY HAZARD.

NONETHELESS, OPCW ACCEPTED AL QAEDA’S VERBAL TESTIMONY, AND AL QAEDA’S ‘SEXXED UP’ PHYSICAL EVIDENCE.

OPCW ADMITTED ITS INVESTIGATORS DID NOT ENTER THE AREAS THAT REQUIRED INVESTIGATIONS, IN ALL OF THE FFM AND IIT ‘DOSSIERS,’ ALL OF WHICH ARE INCLUDED IN ABOVE HYPERLINKED REPORT. SYRIA NEWS HAS READ EVERY WORD OF EACH OF THEM.

NOTE THE FEATURED IMAGE OF THE HUMAN GARBAGE PSYCHOPATHS THAT SCARED THE OPCW FROM ENTERING LTAMENAH. THESE BABOONS ARE THE REPUTED MEDICS, ACCORDING TO THE NATO KLANSMEN.

Colonialist France — which tested its nukes on Algeria — has always had a special antipathy toward the Syrian Arab Republic, for ejecting its occupiers, and its occupation; Evacuation Day was just celebrated, last week.

War criminal France, which nuked Algerians in its Gerboise Bleue atrocity, France which enucleated so many Gilets Jaunes that the ophthalmologists of the country actually sent a letter to Macron asking him to please stop blinding French citizens, also led the NATO UN klan sabotage of Syria’s request for an OPCW investigation of the terrorists’ use of chemical weapons which murdered upwards of 25 people in Khan al Asal, 19 March 2013, most of them Syrian Arab Army soldiers. France’s successful sabotage was assisted by UK, US, and Israel (the latter is basically a NATO country that pays no dues).

Syria’s requests to the UN for OPCW investigations began immediately after 5 December 2012, when terrorists located in Turkey uploaded a video showing the use of a chemical weapon in a terminal rabbit experiment, threatening to unleash it against the Syrian people. The same takfiri savages released a second deadly chemical video on 12 December 2012, claiming they had a poison that could be used to destroy the al Asinn natural water supply in Lattakia, and to massacre the ethnic minority of Alawites in the region. Both videos are in this report which pre-dates the al Qaeda atrocities in Khan Sheikhoun, by four weeks and two days. The poison appears to be what the Nusra Helmets used on their kidnapped victims on 4 April, as it was quick acting and resulted in the same, painful, agonal breathing in the caged rabbit as in the children stripped half-naked, triple atrocity of kidnap, poison, and show a snuff pornography to the world’s most degenerate pathogens.

OPCW pimps for al Qaeda for perpetual war.
Remember this child? Stripped naked, pummeled with a power hose, poisoned in snuff porn which showed painful agonal breathing. One of dozens murdered by al Qaeda 4 April 2017.

The OPCW is NATO. NATO is the devil. As always — Iraq, Libya, Syria — in the making of any deal with the devil, it must only be considered in terms of a tactical necessity, to postpone the inevitable.

Despite Syria having joined the the NATO-run OPCW, turning over its unused chemical stockpile (something the US still has not done, yet there are no monthly meetings about the US ‘chemical file,’ no bombing of the US, no stripping it of its voting rights at The Hague), the NATO junta of the US, UK, France and assorted house servant criminals bombed the SAR based on the word of the Brit illegal once on trial for terrorism at home, the #NotADoctor criminal Shajul Islam, whose license to practice medicine in his homeland had long been revoked, and had it not, the illegal practice of medicine in someone else’s country is grounds for licensure revocation.

The OPCW / UN klansmen are still enraged over the ten year anniversary of the failed NATO Spring against the SAR, and likely have also been engaged in rug-chewing over the recent closure of their al Qaeda boys’ training center near Tadmor.

ISIS will be crushed and USA ejected
Syria President Dr. Bashar al-Assad: “Every inch of Syria will be liberated”

— Miri Wood

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Armenian Patriots Attack NATO

20 APRIL 2021

By Grigory Trofimchuk

Expert on International Relations

Armenian Patriots Attack NATO

Recently, the growing civil hatred resulted in a street attack on the former director of the NATO Information Center in Armenia, Ara Tadevosyan.

Armenian public activists are increasingly convinced that the West and its institutions located on the territory of the country are to blame for all their recent troubles. According to independent researchers, there have been more than two hundred such pro-Western organizations in recent years. For a relatively small republic, this is a colossal figure, especially given that it is reinforced by one of the highest percentages of the US Embassy staff in Armenia in relation to the number of its citizens. This was repeatedly discussed at conferences in Moscow, with the participation of the Armenian Ambassador.

The cup of patience of these citizens is beginning to overflow, since the “army” of Western adherents has done nothing to improve real life in the host country, while engaging in activities of a closed nature, inaccessible to public control, with the standard reference to the need to “develop democracy”. At the same time, the accusations against Russia and the CSTO, apparently, come from the same nest, working to further weaken Armenia.

Recently, the growing civil hatred resulted in a street attack on the former director of the NATO Information Center in Armenia, Ara Tadevosyan. The activists were not even hindered by the coronavirus epidemic, and they were able to recognize Tadevosyan in a seemingly ordinary passer-by, walking in a medical mask in the center of Yerevan. Perhaps Tadevosyan will now always have to wear a mask, hiding from the public, even after the virus disappears.

This is a precedent. It is obvious that the patriotic citizens of Armenia no longer want to tolerate Armenia’s cooperation with the West in any form, including the new wars that Western structures are preparing for this state. Despite the recent closure of this Information Center and the disbanding of personnel, NATO continues to strengthen along the borders of Armenia, having significantly strengthened in this region since 1991, which causes emotional, spontaneous protests from the population.

Apparently, Ara Tadevosyan, who raised a poster at the request of the patriots, calling on NATO to stay away from Armenia – “NATO Keep Out from Armenia!”, “NATO Go Home!” – is only the beginning of mass anti-Western actions. The Armenians, who are patriots of their homeland, are not yet calling on Tadevosyan and his friends to leave Armenia forever and live in the West they love so much, but such a development is quite possible.

But now it is most important to understand to what extent the NATO Information Center, which was active until recently in Armenia, was involved in the development of the destabilization of the military-political situation in the region, which ultimately led to the so-called Second Karabakh War. Such questions should be asked to the same pro-Western activist Are Tadevosyan, perhaps in the framework of a special press conference, so that the growing political position of the real Armenian “street” does not look like a commonplace, banal settling of scores. And this is a completely different nascent Armenian “street”, significantly different from the one that brought Nikol Pashinyan to power in the spring of 2018.

The NATO Information Center was opened in Yerevan in 2007, on the eve of 2008, when the South Ossetian War broke out in the South Caucasus. This can be considered a simple coincidence, but the facts and dates are strictly in their places, in a strict sequence. The goals of the inaugurated institution were extremely noble: it was assumed that the “broad Armenian public “would be better informed about the tasks of the North Atlantic Alliance and its partners, one of the main ones, at that time, in the region was rapidly becoming Georgia. The real status of such centers was intended to include in the “cloud” around NATO on the basis of bilateral agreements those countries that did not have membership in this military-political bloc and could hardly ever get it.

Just a few years later, in 2011, with the active participation of the same Ara Tadevosyan, a training program on “NATO as an element of the Western security system” was launched within the framework of the “NATO Week in Armenia”. That is, even then, the processes that are destroying Armenia today were launched, with the transfer of the “arrows”, that is, the blame, to Russia. At the same time, Tadevoyasyan himself said that the project is “pilot in nature”.

And today, ten years later, the pilot ” Tadevosyan received an inevitable response from his grateful compatriots. And this is just the first swallow.

Do as I say … not as I do

Do as I say … not as I do

April 19, 2021

By Francis Lee who looks at the politics of development and under-development for the Saker Blog.

I think it was Sir Ian Gilmour (now deceased) who, as one time member of Mrs Thatcher’s first Cabinet in 1979, referred to her economic policy as ‘Clause 4 dogmatism in reverse.’ (1) This was an apt description from a thinking Tory. The notion that there existed a magic panacea which would banish all the problems associated with Britain’s (and the world’s) economic ills, formed the basis of Thatcherism, Reaganism, and the Third-wayism of Clinton and Blair. The so-called ‘supply-side’ revolution consisted of removing all the controls from capitalism which had been painstakingly put in place over the centuries, and simply letting the system rip – and rip it did. The 1970s was the beginning of the interregnum to the new order of the 1980s and beyond, which had ushered in policies of privatisation, deregulation, liberalisation which were the key components of this policy paradigm.

In international terms free-trade and free-markets were of course at the heart of the system – a system which was to become known as ‘globalization’ and/or neoliberalism packaged and sold as an irresistible force of nature. It was considered, by all the people that mattered, that free-trade was always and everywhere the best policy. This view was codified in what was to become known as the ‘Washington Consensus.’ The new conventional wisdom was conceived of and given a legitimating cachet by political, business, MSM and academic elites around the world.

However, many of the elements – if not all – of the Washington Consensus were hardly new, and indeed many date back to the 18th and 19th centuries and perhaps beyond. It could be said that the newly emergent mainstream orthodoxy represented a caricature of an outdated and somewhat dubious political economy.

The theory that free trade between nations would maximise output and welfare was first mooted by Adam Smith, but its final elaboration was conducted by David Ricardo in his famous work The Principles of Political Economy and Taxation first published in 1817. Briefly, he argued that nations should specialise in what they do best and in that way world output would be maximised. This policy was called ‘comparative advantage’. The hypothetical example he used was England and Portugal and the production of wine and cloth, where he calculated that England should produce cloth and Portugal should produce wine. It was asserted, though no evidence was ever presented, that all would gain from this international division of labour. The theory is in fact full of unsubstantiated and seductive notions, but its practical application is limited. Because it is based upon so many rigid and static assumptions, it is especially appealing to those of a status quo disposition, including most present- day globalist thinkers.

However, even a cursory glance at economic history, and particularly the transition from agrarian to industrial societies, demonstrates the weaknesses, and indeed, serves to falsify the whole Ricardian trade paradigm. The brute historical fact is that every nation which has successfully embarked on this transition – including the UK – has done so adopting policies which were the exact opposite of those advocated by the free-trade school. In the world of actually existing capitalism, free-trade is the exception rather than the rule. Contemporary world trade is mainly a matter of intra-firm trading, that is, global companies trading with their own affiliates and subsidiaries in different countries, mainly for tax avoidance purposes (see below). Next there are regional trading blocs like the EU or US which erect tariff barriers to non-members. Thirdly there is barter trade where goods and services are exchanged for other goods and services rather than money. Finally, only about 20% at most, can be considered to be free trade, and even here there are exceptions involving bilateral specifications and agreements.

Modernisation and industrialisation, wherever it took place, involved tariffs, infant industry protection, export subsidies, import quotas, grants for R&D, patents, currency manipulation, mass education and so forth … a smorgasboard of interventionist policies whereby the economy was directed from above by the state. For example during its period of industrialisation the United States erected tariff walls to keep out foreign (mainly British) goods with the intention of nurturing nascent US industries. US tariffs (in percentages of value) ranged from 35 to almost 50% during the period 1820-1931, and the US itself only became in any sense a free-trading nation after World War II, that is once its financial and industrial hegemony had been established. In Europe laissez-faire was also eschewed. In Germany in particular tariffs were lower in the US, but the involvement of the German state in the development of the economy was decidedly hands-on. Again there was the by now standard policy of infant industry protection, and this was supplemented by an array of grants from the central government including scholarships to promising innovators, subsidies to competent entrepreneurs, and the organisation of exhibitions of new machinery and industrial processes. In addition, ‘’during this period Germany pioneered modern social policy, which was important in maintaining social peace – and thus promoting investment – in a newly unified country … ‘’(2)

It has been the same everywhere, yet the Ricardian legacy still prevails. But this legacy takes on the form of a free-floating ideology with little connexion to either practical policy prescriptions or the real world. It has been said in this respect that ‘’ … practical results have little to do with the persuasiveness of ideology.’’(3) This much is true, but it rather misses the point: the function of ideology is not to supply answers to problems in the real world, but simply to give a Panglossian justification to the prevalent order of things.

Turning to the real world it will be seen that ‘’ … history shows that symmetric free-trade, between nations of approximately the same level of development, benefits both parties.’’ However, ‘’asymmetric trade will lead to the poor nation specialising in being poor, while the rich nation will specialise in being rich. To benefit from free trade, the poor nation must rid itself of its international specialisation of being poor. For 500 years this has not happened anywhere without any market intervention.’’ (4)

This asymmetry in the global system is both cause and consequence of globalization. It should be borne in mind that the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) are suppliers of cheap raw material inputs to the industrialised countries of North America, Western Europe, and East Asia. In technological terms the LDCs find themselves locked into low value-added, low-productivity, low-research intensive dead-end production, where no discernible development or technology transfer takes place. Thus under-development is a structural characteristic of globalization, not some unfortunate accident. Put another way:

‘’ … if rich nations (the North) as the result of historical forces, are relatively well endowed with the vital resources of capital, entrepreneurial ability, and skilled labour, their continued specialisation in products and processes that use the resources intensively can create the necessary conditions for their further growth. By contrast LDCs (the global-South) endowed with abundant supplies of cheap, unskilled labour, by intentionally specialising in products that use cheap, unskilled labour … will often find themselves locked into a stagnant situation that perpetuates their comparative advantage in unskilled, unproductive activities. This in turn inhibits the domestic growth of needed capital, entrepreneurship, and technical skills. Static efficiency becomes dynamic inefficiency, and a cumulative process is set in motion in which trade exacerbates already unequal trading relationships, distributes benefits largely to the people who are already well-off, and perpetuates the physical and human resource under-development that characterises most poor nations.’’ (5)

The cocoa-chocolate industry (hereafter CCI) of the West African nations, Cameroon, Ghana, Ivory Coast and Nigeria are a case in point. These countries produce the majority of the world’s raw cocoa beans. But of course the industry as a whole is controlled by western multinationals such as Hershey, Nestlé and Cadbury-Schweppes (now Kraft). The structure of this industry – vertically integrated – is very typical of the relationship between the LDCs and the developed world. The low value-added part of the industry – growing and harvesting the beans – is left to individual farmers in West Africa. Buying agencies, either very close to, or in fact subsidiaries of multinational companies (MNCs), then buy the raw material at prices usually dictated by the MNCs. This asymmetrical relationship between supplier and sole buyers (the African farmers) is termed ‘monopsony’ in the economics jargon. It should be understood that large companies not only over-price their products to the final consumer, but also under-price their purchases from their captive suppliers. From then on, the various stages of the processing supply chain are in the hands of the parent company. From raw beans, to roasting, milling, refining, manufacturing of chocolate or cocoa, shipping, and packaging, branding and advertising – all of these stages add value to the product, value which is garnered by the MNC. The exporting African nations are left with the low or no value-added end of the operation, a technological cul-de-sac.

Nor does it end there. MNCs can avoid much local taxation by shifting profits to subsidiaries in low-tax venues by artificially inflating the price which it pays for intermediate products purchased from these same subsidiaries so as to lower its stated profits. This phenomenon is known as transfer pricing and is a common practice of MNCs – one over which host governments can exert little control as long as corporate tax rates differ from one country to the next. Hypothetically it works as follows:

Take a company called World Inc. which produces a type of food in Africa; it then processes it and sells the finished product in the United States. World Inc. does this via three subsidiaries: Africa Inc. (in Africa Malawi ), Haven Inc. (in a tax haven, British Virgin Islands with zero taxes) and America Inc. (in the United States).

1. Now Africa Inc. sells the produce to Haven Inc. at an artificially low price, resulting in Africa Inc. having artificially low profits – and consequently an artificially low tax bill in Africa. 2. Then Haven Inc. sells the product to America Inc. at a very high price – almost as high as the final retail price at which 3. America Inc. sells the processed product. As a result, America Inc. also has artificially low profitability, and an artificially low tax bill in America. By contrast, however, Haven Inc. has bought at a very low price, and sold at a very high price, artificially creating very high profits. However, Haven Inc is located in a tax haven – so it pays no taxes on those profits. Easy Peasy, no?

Bear in mind also that although the IMF and World Bank enjoin LDCs to adopt market liberalisation policies, they apparently see – or conveniently ignore – the past and current mercantilist practices of developed nations. Agriculture for example is massively subsidised in both the US and the EU. But it really is a question of don’t do what I do – do as I say. This hypocrisy at the heart of the problem represents the elephant in the room. We know that countries which attempt to open their markets when they are not ready to do so usually pay a heavy price (in the 1990s with Russia and the free-market shock-therapy for example). The countries which protect their growing industries until they are ready to trade on world markets have been the successes – even in capitalist terms. The wave of development in the 19th century and the development of East Asian economies during the 20th century bears witness to this.

But the object of the free-trade rhetoric and finger wagging posture of the developed world is precisely to maintain the status quo. We should be aware that: ‘’… multinational corporations are not in the development business; their objective is to maximise their return on capital. MNCs seek out the best profit opportunities and are largely unconcerned with issues such as poverty, inequality, employment conditions, and environmental problems.’’ (6)

Given the regulatory capture of the political structures in the developed world by powerful business interests, it seems that this situation is likely to endure for the foreseeable future. Development will only come about when the LDCs take their fate into their own hands and emulate the nation-building strategies of East Asia and in the 19th century by Germany and the United States. These leaders and leading nations were not to sit back and let the British rule the roost. They acted and they overcame.

Germany: Georg Friedrich List (1789-1846).  He was a forefather of the German historical school of economics and ‘National System of Political Economy’. He argued for the German Customs Union from a Nationalist standpoint. He advocated imposing tariffs on imported goods while supporting free trade of domestic goods and stated the cost of a tariff should be seen as an investment in a nation’s future productivity.

The USA – Alexander Hamilton In the aftermath of ratification, Hamilton continued to expand on his interpretations of the Constitution to defend his proposed economic policies as Secretary of the Treasury. Credited today with creating the foundation for the U.S. financial system, Hamilton wrote three reports addressing public credit, banking, and raising revenue. In addition to the National Bank, Alexander Hamilton founded the U.S. Mint, created a system to levy taxes on luxury products (such as whiskey), and outlined an aggressive plan for the development of internal manufacturing.

The USA – President – Ulysses S Grant

“For centuries England has relied on protection, has carried it to extremes and has obtained satisfactory results from it. There is no doubt that it is to this system that it owes its present strength. After two centuries, England has found it convenient to adopt free trade because it thinks that protection can no longer offer it anything. Very well then, gentlemen, my knowledge of our country leads me to believe that within 200 years, when America has gotten out of protection all that it can offer, it too will adopt free trade.” (7)

Markets have a strong tendency to reinforce the status quo. The free market dictates that countries stick to what they are good at. Stated bluntly, this means that poor countries are supposed to continue with their current engagement in low productivity activities. But engagement in those activities is exactly what makes them poor. If they want to leave poverty behind, they have to defy the market and do the more difficult things that bring them higher incomes – it is as simple as that, and there are no two ways about it.


NOTES

(1Clause 4 was part of the British Labour Party’s early Constitution. But is no longer in any real sense part of the constitution of the contemporary UK Labour Party, setting out the aims and values of the party (New Labour) as it is now called. The original clause, adopted in 1918, called for common ownership of heavy industry, and proved controversial in later years; the then leader, Hugh Gaitskell, attempted to remove the clause after Labour’s loss in the 1959 general election.

In 1995, under the leadership of Tony Blair, a new (revisionist) Clause IV was adopted. This was seen as a significant moment in Blair’s redefinition of the party as New Labour, but has survived and become a centrist party along with sister parties in Europe and the Democratic party in the US beyond the New Labour branding.

(2) Kicking Away the Ladder – Ha-Joon Chang

(3) The Trillion Dollar Meltdown – Charles Morris

(4) How Rich Countries Got Rich and Why Poor Countries Stay Poor – Erik Reinert.

(5) Development Economics – Todaro and Smith

(6) Ibid – Todaro and Smith

(7) Collected Works

الحرب الأخطر The most dangerous war

** Please scroll down for the ADJUSTED English Machine translation **

الغرب أنشأ غرفاً ومنظمات وموّلها بسخاء لتشويه ما يحدث على الأرض السورية
الغرب أنشأ غرفاً ومنظمات وموّلها بسخاء لتشويه ما يحدث على الأرض السورية

الحرب الأخطر

bouthaina shaaban | Belçika Yeni Haber

بثينة شعبان

المصدر: الميادين نت

نيسان 19 2021

هناك حرب مخابراتية إعلامية تستخدمها أجهزة المخابرات الغربية، وهي تسبق وتستمر إلى ما بعد الحرب العسكرية. وهذه الحرب بحاجة إلى اهتمام شديد وإلى تكريس الميزانيات والخبراء والأدمغة والأقلام لتفنيد كل الادعاءات والردّ عليها من على منصات إعلامية نافذة للغرب.

هناك نوع من الحرب يبدأ قبل شنّ أي هجوم ويستمر خلاله وبعده وهو الذي يوفّر الأرضية والحالة المجتمعية والسياسية والإعلاميّة لنجاح أي هجوم عسكري في أي مكان ولأي هدف كان، وقد مردت الدول الغربية الاستعمارية على تخصيص الميزانيات السخيّة ووضع الخطط التفصيلية، وشحذ الأدوات المهنية لمثل هذه الحرب، بحيث مازالت تتربع على عرش هذه الحرب وتنتصر فيها مرة تلو أخرى، وذلك لإغفال الآخرين لهذه الحقيقة الهامة وإحجامهم عن التوقف قليلاً وتغيير جداول ميزانياتهم وأولويات خططهم. 

ما أقصده هو الحرب الإعلامية التي يستخدم القائمون عليها من أجهزة المخابرات الغربية خبراء في اللغات والتعبير وخبراء في تاريخ وثقافة وأديان وطوائف الشعوب ليعلموا من أين ينفذوا إلى عقول هذه الشعوب وقلوبها ويسيّروها وفقاً للمصالح الغربية، ويستخدمون خبراء في علم النفس وخبراء في الترويج وخبراء في الأصوات والموسيقى والتأثير وربما خبراء في اختصاصات لم نطّلع عليها بعد ومازالت حكراً عليهم ولمراكز أبحاثهم ووسائل إعلامهم، إذ أن الدارس لساحة الصراعات والحروب التي تشنها القوى الغربية لنهب ثروات الشعوب وعلى الأخص الولايات المتحدة التي تشن الحروب اليوم مع أتباعها على دول عديدة يكاد يصاب بالدهشة من المفارقات الجمّة بين الواقع على الأرض وبين الادعاءات التي يتم الترويج لها في إعلام الكون حتى تصبح حقيقة لا يتجرّأ أحد على تحدّيها، وحتى إذا تجرأ لن يتمكن من قلب المعادلة وإعادة الاعتبار للوقائع التي تشير إلى عكس توجه العاصفة الإعلامية. 

والأمثلة أكثر من أن تُحصى. وإذا بدأت بضرب المثال عن وطني سوريا فإننا نجد أن الغرب وبعد أن أنشأ غرفاً ومنظمات وموّلها بسخاء لتشويه ما يحدث على الأرض السورية (وقد كشفت تسريبات الوثائق البريطانية عن حرب إعلامية منظمة وممولة منذ اليوم الأول منذ بداية الحرب الإرهابية على سوريا) بعد ذلك بدأوا بإخراج أفلام ومنحها جائزة أوسكار لأكاذيب صمموها واخترعوها وروّجوا لها وأصبحت بالنسبة لهم واقعاً بديلاً يدحض سيرة الواقع المعاش ومن هذه الأفلام “رجل حلب الأخير” و”الكهف”، وبالنسبة لجماهير الغرب فإن هذه الأفلام هي القناة الأساسية التي تنبؤهم بما جرى في سورية. رغم أن هذه الأفلام، تماماً كقصة الطفل عمران، هي عبارة عن أكاذيب ملفقة لا تمتّ إلى الحقيقة بصلة قام بها بعض المأجورين وعلى رأسهم فراس فياض لتقديم ما يشتهي الغرب رؤيته وسماعه عن حرب ابتدعها لتدمير حياة الملايين من شعب مسالم في بلد آمن ومستقر يشكّل شوكة في أعين الصهاينة والطامعين بإرث هذه الأمة.

وفي الاتهامات المزعومة عن استخدام الحكومة السورية للغازات السامة في دوما وسراقب، تأتي هذه الاتهامات لتناقض تناقضاً صارخاً تقرير منظمة حظر الأسلحة الكيماوية والتي أكدت أن سوريا قد تخلت عن كلّ أسلحتها الكيماوية وأنها خالية من السلاح الكيماوي وكان هذا منذ سنوات، والبارحة في 16/4/2021 عقد السفير الروسي في الأمم المتحدة فاسيلي نيبينزيا جلسة استماع لخبراء منظمة حظر الأسلحة الكيماوية، وخبراء آخرين في الملف والموضوع أكدوا خلالها وبما لا يدع مجالاً للشك تلاعب بعض العناصر في المنظمة بالتقرير الذي كتبه الفريق الذي زار سوريا واستبدلوه بأكاذيب من قبل أطراف لم تطأ أقدامها أرض سورية، كما رفض المسؤولون في المنظمة الاستماع لهؤلاء الذين زاروا سورية والمدير السابق للمنظمة لأن تقاريرهم تؤكد على عدم استخدام الحكومة السورية للغازات السامة وأن ما تمّ الترويج له على شاشات التلفزة هو مسرحية إعلامية هزلية لأن هؤلاء الناس لو تعرضوا للغازات السامة لكانوا أمواتاً ولما كانوا موجودين لسكب الماء عليهم. 

والذاكرة تعود بنا إلى كولن باول وإلى ادعاءات أميركا بأن العراق يمتلك أسلحة دمار شامل، وبعد أن أنهوا بحثهم في الملف ووجدوا أنه على الأغلب لا يوجد أي دليل لما أكدوه مراراً وتكراراً ختموا التقرير بالشمع الأحمر وأودعوه أقفال الأمم المتحدة ومنعوا فتحه إلى ما بعد ستين عاماً أي بعد أن يكون كل من عاش وشهد الأحداث أصبح في ذمة الله.

وهناك قصص مشابهة كثيرة ومتوفرة عبر الاتهامات التي يكيلونها لروسيا والصين بشأن مواضيع عدة، وعن الأكاذيب التي تطبخ في ذات المطبخ عن الحرب على اليمن، وعما يجري في أوكرانيا وعن حقيقة المواقف من الاتفاق النووي الإيراني والقائمة تطول. ولكن ما يثلج الصدر اليوم هو بداية التصدي وإن يكن مازال في بداياته لهذه الحرب المخابراتية الإعلامية الخطيرة، إذ أن الجلسة التي عقدها البارحة السفير الروسي في الأمم المتحدة وأعطى المنبر لعدد من الشهود الموثوقين والذين فنّدوا الحقائق حول الملف الكيميائي السوري بطريقة يجب أن تدفع القائمين على التزوير إلى الخجل من أنفسهم وعدم الإقدام على مثل هذه المهزلة مرة أخرى. 

وفي الإطار ذاته وبذات الروح قرأت مقالاً في جريدة (الصين اليومية) عن إقليم شيجيانغ بقلم الكاتب فو زو وبتاريخ 8/4/2021  فنّد فيه بما لا يدع مجالاً للشك الأكاذيب الأميركية حول إقليم شيجيانغ وأثبت بالأرقام اهتمام الحكومة الصينية بالتعليم لكل سكان هذا الإقليم وبالتعليم الداخلي الذي يوازي بجودته أي تعليم داخلي في العالم. كما يتحدث الكاتب عن تحسين المستوى المعيشي لسكان الإقليم والعمل الذي يدأبون للقيام به لتحسين مستوى معيشتهم وأن الصين تقف ضدّ أي اضطهاد أو تطهير عرقي أو إبادة يدّعي الغرب أن الصين تمارسها في الإقليم.  ومن الواضح من تاريخ الصين ومن عملها للقضاء على الفقر في كل الصين وعلى رفع مستوى المعيشة للصينيين أنها حضارة تهتم بالإنسان وبمقدرات عيشه ولا تدخل التفرقة الدينية أو العنصرية في قاموس سياساتها.

ومن ناحية أخرى من المضحك أن تدّعي الولايات المتحدة الحرص على حياة المسلمين الإيغور في الصين وعلى تعليمهم ومستوى معيشتهم وقد كرّست منظمات إرهابية ومولتها بالمال ومازالت، لتدمير آلاف المدارس في سورية والتي يرتادها مسلمون ومسيحيون، ولتدمير الجوامع والكنائس والأسواق التاريخية والآثار والحضارة. فكيف يمكن أن تكون حريصة على مسلمي الصين ومدمّرة لمسلمي العراق وسورية وليبيا واليمن؟ من أين أتى اهتمام الولايات المتحدة بمسلمي الإيغور في الصين إلا من باب التدخل في شؤون الصين الداخلية، تماماً كما هي سياستها حيال تايوان وهونغ كونغ من جهة، وسياستها تجاه أوكرانيا والقرم بالنسبة إلى روسيا من جهة ثانية. لا يمكن فهم ما تقوم به الولايات المتحدة إلا من باب التدخل في شؤون الدول الداخلية والحرص على أمن “إسرائيل” وقوتها الإرهابية في المنطقة.

لقد علِمَتْ الولايات المتحدة أن الكيان الصهيوني هو الذي قام بالهجوم على محطة نطنز لتدمير المباحثات الأميركية الإيرانية ولكننا لم نسمع كلمة إدانة لهذا الهجوم من الولايات المتحدة أو من أي دولة غربية. كما أنهم يلتزمون الصمت عن كل الأكاذيب التي يتم الترويج لها عن أوكرانيا والقرم بعد أن اتخذت الولايات المتحدة عقوبات ضد روسيا على أسس واهية لا دليل واحد فيها على كل الادعاءات بل هي تعترف أن صحة هذه الادعاءات منخفضة إلى متوسطة.

المهم في الموضوع هو أن هذه الحرب المخابراتية الإعلامية التي تسبق وترافق وتستمر إلى ما بعد الحرب العسكرية بحاجة إلى اهتمام شديد وإلى تكريس الميزانيات والخبراء والأدمغة والأقلام لتفنيد كل الادعاءات والردّ عليها من على منصات إعلامية نافذة للغرب وتصل إلى أسماع البشر في كل أنحاء الدنيا تماماً كما فعل السفير فاسيلي نيبينزيا في الجلسة الهامة التي تحدث بها الخبراء وفندوا ألاعيب منظمة الأسلحة الكيماوية، وتماماً كما فعلت جريدة الصين اليوم بتفنيد كل الأكاذيب المختلقة حول إقليم شيجيانج. ولا بأس من تخصيص ميزانية سخيّة لهذا الأمر حتى وإن تم اقتطاعها من ميزانيات الدفاع العسكرية لأن الدفاع بالكلمة والترويج للحقائق النابعة من الأرض في وجه الأكاذيب والافتراءات قد يوفّر على الجيوش معارك عسكرية مكلفة وقد يساهم في تثقيف الرأي العام العالمي حول حقيقة السياسات الغربية والكلفة الباهظة التي يدفعها البشر في كل أنحاء الأرض نتيجة هذه السياسات.

 إن مواجهة سياسة القطب الواحد وضمان ولادة عالم متعدد الأقطاب تحتاج إلى استراتيجيات شاملة تتصدى لاستراتيجيات الهيمنة والتدخل والإسفاف والتزوير والذي كلّف دماء وحياة واستقراراً وأمناً لشعوبنا جمعاء. 

نحن بحاجة إلى وقفة عميقة صادقة وذكية وشاملة وبحاجة لمقارعة من يشن الهجوم ويدمر البلدان بأدوات أذكى وأدهى من أدواتهم على كل الصعد وفي كافة المجالات.


مقالات ذات صلة

مقالات ذات صلة


The most dangerous war

bouthaina shaaban | Belçika Yeni Haber

Buthaina Shaaban

Source:  Al-Mayadeen  Net

April 19, 2021

There is a media intelligence war used by Western intelligence services, which precedes and continues until after the military war. This war needs great attention and budgets, experts, brains and pens are devoted to refuting and responding to all allegations from west-window media platforms.

There is a kind of war that begins before, during and after any attack, which provides the ground and the societal, political and media situation for the success of any military attack anywhere and for any purpose, and the western colonial states have been forced to allocate generous budgets and draw up detailed plans, and sharpen the professional tools of such a war, so that they still sit on the throne of this war and win it again and again, in order to ignore others for this important fact and their reluctance to stop a little and change their budget schedules and priorities.

What I mean is the media war on which western intelligence agencies use experts in languages and expression, experts in the history, culture, religions and communities of peoples to know where to carry out to the minds and hearts of these peoples and to conduct them in accordance with Western interests, and use experts in psychology, promotion experts, experts in sounds, music and influence, and perhaps experts in disciplines that we have not yet seen and are still exclusive to them, their research centers and their media, as The study of the arena of conflicts and wars waged by western powers to plunder the wealth of peoples, especially the United States, which is waging wars today with its followers on many countries, is almost surprised by the great paradoxes between reality on earth and the allegations promoted in the media of the universe so that it becomes a reality that no one dares to challenge, and even if he dares, he will not be able to turn the equation and reconsider the facts that indicate the opposite of the direction of the media storm.

Examples are too many. If you start to set an example of my homeland syria, we find that the West, having created rooms and organizations and generously funded them to distort what is happening on Syrian soil (leaks of British documents have revealed an organized and funded media war since the first day since the beginning of the terrorist war on Syria) then began to direct and give films The Oscar for lies they designed, invented, promoted and became, for them, an alternative reality that refutes the biography of living reality, including “The Last Man of Aleppo” and “The Cave”, and for western audiences, these films are the main channel that predicts what happened in Syria. Although these films, just like the story of The Child Imran, are fabricated lies that have nothing to do with the truth, some of the hacks, led by Firas Fayyad, have done to present what the West desires to see and hear about a war it created to destroy the lives of millions of peaceful people in a safe and stable country that is a thorn in the eyes of the Zionists and those who aspire to the legacy of this nation.

In the alleged accusations of the Syrian government’s use of toxic gases in Douma and Saraqeb, these accusations are in stark contrast to the report of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), which confirmed that Syria has abandoned all its chemical weapons and that it is chemical-weapon-free and this has been for years, and yesterday on 16 April 2021, Russian Ambassador to the United Nations Vassily Nebenzia held a hearing of experts of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, and other experts in the file and subject confirmed during it and not There is no doubt that some elements of the organization manipulated the report written by the team that visited Syria and replaced it with lies by parties that did not set foot on Syrian soil, as the officials of the organization refused to listen to those who visited Syria and the former director of the organization because their reports confirm the Syrian government’s non-use of toxic gases and that what was promoted on television is a comic media play because if these people had been exposed to toxic gases they would have died and would not have been there to pour water on them.

The memory brings us back to Colin Powell and America’s claims that Iraq possesses weapons of mass destruction, and after they have finished their research on the file and found that there is probably no evidence of what they have repeatedly confirmed, they sealed the report with red wax, called it the locks of the United Nations and prevented it from opening it until after 60 years, i.e. after all those who lived and witnessed the events became in the hands of God.

There are many similar stories available through accusations by Russia and China on several topics, about the lies that are being cooked in the same kitchen about the war on Yemen, what is going on in Ukraine and about the reality of the positions on the Iran nuclear deal and the list goes on. But what is heartening today is the beginning of the response, although it is still in its infancy for this dangerous media intelligence war, as the meeting held yesterday by the Russian Ambassador to the United Nations and gave the platform to a number of reliable witnesses who refuted the facts about the Syrian chemical file in a way that should lead the counterfeiters to be ashamed of themselves and not to make such a farce again.

In the same spirit, I read an article in the China Daily on Zhejiang Province by writer Fu Zhou on April 8, 2021, in which he refuted beyond a doubt U.S. lies about Zhejiang province and in numbers demonstrated the Chinese government’s interest in education for all the region’s population and internal education, which is equal to the quality of any internal education in the world. The author also talks about improving the standard of living of the territory’s population and the work they are doing to improve their standard of living and that China stands against any persecution, ethnic cleansing or extermination claimed by the West to be practiced by China in the territory.  It is clear from China’s history and its work to eradicate poverty in all China and to raise the standard of living of the Chinese that it is a civilization that cares about human beings and their livelihoods and does not include religious or racial segregation in the dictionary of its policies.

On the other hand, it is funny that the United States claims to take care of the lives, education and standard of living of Uighur Muslims in China, and has dedicated terrorist organizations and financed them with money and continues to destroy thousands of schools in Syria frequented by Muslims and Christians, and to destroy mosques, churches, historical markets, monuments and civilization. How can you be keen on the Muslims of China and destroy the Muslims of Iraq, Syria, Libya and Yemen? Where did the U.S. interest in Uighur Muslims in China come from except for interference in China’s internal affairs, just as its policy on Taiwan and Hong Kong on the one hand, and its policy toward Ukraine and Crimea for Russia on the other. What the United States is doing can only be understood in order to interfere in the affairs of internal states and to ensure the security of Israel and its terrorist power in the region.

The United States has learned that it was the Zionist entity that attacked Natanz station to destroy the U.S.-Iran talks, but we have not heard a word of condemnation from the United States or any Western country. They also remain silent about all the lies promoted about Ukraine and Crimea after the United States has taken sanctions against Russia on flimsy grounds, not a single evidence of all allegations, but recognizes that the veracity of these allegations is low to medium.

What is important about the matter is that this media intelligence war that precedes, accompanies and continues until after the military war needs great attention and devoting budgets, experts, brains and pens to refute all allegations and respond to them from media platforms open to the West and reach the ears of people in all parts of the world just as Ambassador Vasily Nebenzia did in the important session in which the experts spoke and refuted the tricks of the Chemical Weapons Organization, just as the China Today newspaper refuted all the fabricated lies about Zhejiang. There is nothing wrong with allocating a generous budget for this matter, even if it is cut from military defense budgets, because defending by word and promoting facts emanating from the ground in the face of lies and fabrications may save armies costly military battles and may contribute to educating the world public opinion about the truth of Western policies and the high cost paid by them. Humans are all over the earth as a result of these policies.

Confronting one-pole politics and ensuring the birth of a multipolar world requires comprehensive strategies that address strategies of domination, intervention, subsistence and forgery that have cost blood, life, stability and security to all ourpeoples.

We need a deep, honest, intelligent and comprehensive stand and need to fight those who launch the attack and destroy countries with smarter and more powerful tools at all levels and in all areas.

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Will the allies have to die for Kiev?

Thierry Meyssan Political consultant, President-founder of the Réseau Voltaire (Voltaire Network). Latest work in English – Before Our Very Eyes, Fake Wars and Big Lies: From 9/11 to Donald Trump, Progressive Press, 2019.

by Thierry Meyssan

The Ukrainian population is divided between a part of European culture and another of Russian culture.

This singularity offers Washington a playground against Moscow. For several weeks now, the drums have been beating, sounding war.

But none of the allies want to die for Kiev or sacrifice themselves to Russia.

VOLTAIRE NETWORK | PARIS (FRANCE) | 20 APRIL 2021

The US armed forces

Joe Biden has always been the “Pentagon’s man”.

1- The Anglo-Saxons have a hereditary enemy: the Russians. For them, Russians are despicable people, destined since Otto I (10th century) to be nothing but slaves, as their name indicates (‘Slavic’ means both ethnicity and slave). In the 20th century, they were against the USSR, allegedly because it was communist, and are now against Russia without knowing why.

2- Second adversary, enemies they have created for themselves by waging an “endless war” against them since September 11, 2001: the populations of the wider Middle East, whose state organisation they are systematically destroying, whether they are allies or adversaries, in order to “send them back to the stone age” and exploit the riches of their region (Rumsfeld/Cebrowski strategy).

3- Third adversary: China, whose economic development threatens to relegate them to second place. In their eyes, they have no other choice than war. This is at least what their political scientists think, and they even speak of the “Thucydides trap” in reference to the war that Sparta waged against Athens, frightened by its flight [1].

4 – The issues of Iran and North Korea are far behind the first three.

Joe Biden’s Interim National Security Strategy [2] or their Annual Threat Assessment of the US Intelligence Community [3] keep repeating this from different angles.

Fighting three wars at once is extremely difficult. The Pentagon is currently looking at how to prioritise these. It will report in June. There is absolute secrecy about the commission that is doing this assessment. No one even knows who the members are. Yet without delay, the Biden administration is focusing on Russia.

Whether we are independent or subservient to the “American Empire”, we must stop trying to avoid seeing. The United States of America has no other objective than to destroy Russian culture, Arab state structures, and – eventually – the Chinese economy. This has absolutely nothing to do with the legitimate defence of their people.

There is no other way to explain why the United States spends astronomical sums on its military that bear no relation to the budgets of those it describes as its “friends” or “enemies”. According to the Institute for Strategic Studies in London, the US military budget is at least equal to the sum of the budgets of the other 15 most armed

states [4].

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Military budgets of the 15 largest states (in billions of US dollars).Source: Institute for Strategic Studies

Issues for confrontation with Russia

The US is concerned about Russia’s recovery. After experiencing a sharp drop in life expectancy between 1988 and 1994 (5 years less), it has recovered, then largely surpassed that of the Soviet era (12 years more), although its healthy life expectancy remains one of the lowest in Europe. Their economy is diversifying, particularly in agriculture, but remains dependent on energy exports. Their army has been renewed, their military-industrial complex is more efficient than the Pentagon’s, and it has acquired experience in Syria.

For Washington, the construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline threatens to free Western Europe from its dependence on US oil. While the attachment of Crimea to the Russian Federation, and even that of Donbass, is at least partially a blow to Ukraine’s dependence on the American Empire (Crimea and Donbass are not of Western culture). Finally, the Russian military presence in Syria is slowing down the project of political destruction of all the peoples of this region.

“When you want to drown your dog, you say it has rabies”

It was undoubtedly President Biden who opened the hostilities by calling the Russian president a “killer”. The two powers had never exchanged insults, even in the Gulag era. His interlocutor replied politely and offered to discuss the matter publicly, which he refused.

The United States has a short-term view of the world. They do not see themselves as responsible for their legacy. According to them, the evil Russians have amassed more than 100,000 troops in the vicinity of Ukraine and are preparing to invade it, as the Soviets did in Poland, Hungary and Czechoslovakia. But then it was not Russia, but the USSR; not the Putin doctrine, but the Brezhnev doctrine; and Leonid Brezhnev himself was not Russian, but Ukrainian.

The Russians, on the contrary, have a long-term view of the world. In their view, the barbaric Americans challenged the balance of power with the attacks of 11 September 2001. Immediately afterwards, on December 13, 2001, President Bush announced the withdrawal of the United States from the ABM Treaty. The United States then brought into NATO, one by one, almost all the former members of the Warsaw Pact and the USSR in violation of their promise at the time of the dissolution of the latter. This policy was confirmed by the Bucharest Declaration in 2008 [5].

Everyone knows the peculiarity of Ukraine: Western culture in the West, Russian culture in the East. For about fifteen years, the country was politically frozen, until Washington organised a pseudo-revolution and put its puppets, in this case neo-Nazis, in power [6]. Moscow reacted quickly enough for Crimea to declare its independence and join the Russian Federation, but it hesitated for the Donbass. Since then, it has been handing out Russian passports to all the inhabitants of this Ukrainian region for which it is the only hope.

The Biden administration

President Biden was known, when he was a senator, for introducing legislation in the Senate that was devised by the Pentagon. When he became president, he surrounded himself with neo-conservative figures. We cannot repeat it enough: the neo-conservatives were Trotskyite militants who were recruited by Republican President Ronald Reagan. Since then, they have always remained in power, except during the parenthesis of Jacksonian President Donald Trump, switching from the Republican to the Democratic Party and back again.

During the colourful Maïdan ’revolution’ (2013-14), Joe Biden, then vice-president, took up the cause of the neo-Nazis who were agents of Nato’s stay-behind networks [7] He ran the operation with one of the then assistant secretaries of state, Victoria Nuland (whose husband, Robert Kagan, is a founder of the Project for a New American Century, the fundraising arm of Republican George W. Bush). President Biden decided to make her the deputy to his new Secretary of State. She relied on the then US ambassador to Kiev, Geoffrey Pyatt, now posted in Athens, Greece. As for President Biden’s new Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, he is both judge and jury because his mother is of Ukrainian origin. Although he was raised in Paris by his mother’s second husband, te lawyer Samuel Pisar (advisor to President Kennedy), he is also a neo-conservative.

Preparing for the confrontation with Russia

In mid-March 2021, the United States and its Nato partners organised the Defender-Europe 21 manoeuvres. These will continue until June. This is a repeat of the mega-exercise Defender-Europe 20, which was reduced and shortened due to the Covid-19 epidemic. It is a huge deployment of men and equipment to simulate a confrontation with Russia. These manoeuvres are joined by a nuclear bomber exercise in Greece, attended by the aforementioned Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt.

On March 25, President Volodymyr Zelensky published the new Ukrainian Security Strategy [8], three weeks after President Joe Biden published the US one.

Responding to Nato, Russia undertook its own manoeuvres on its western border, including its border with Ukraine. It was even sending additional troops to Crimea and as far as Transnistria.

On 1 April, the US Secretary of Defense called his Ukrainian counterpart about a possible increase in tension with Russia [9]. President Volodymyr Zelensky issued a statement saying he was monitoring Russian moves that could be provocative [10].

On 2 April, the United Kingdom organised a meeting of the British-Ukrainian Defence and Foreign Ministries, under the responsibility of British Minister Ben Wallace [11] (who was very active in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict [12]).

On April 2, President Joe Biden called his Ukrainian counterpart to assure him of his support against Russia. According to the Atlantic Council, he announced his decision to give him a hundred combat aircraft (F-15, F-16 and E-2C) currently based at Davis-Monthan air base [13].

On April 4, the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, Democrat Adam Smith, negotiated with Ukrainian parliamentarians to provide large subsidies to the Ukrainian army in exchange for the Ukrainian commitment to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline [14]

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Discreet return trip to Qatar by President Zelensky and the head of the Ukroboronprom arms factories on April 5, 2021.

On April 5, President Volodymyr Zelensky paid a visit to Qatar. The official purpose was to develop trade relations. Qatar is the main supplier of weapons to the jihadists and, according to our information, the question of possible financing of fighters was discussed. The director general of the military manufacturer Ukroboronprom, Yuriy Gusev, was on the trip. It was he who had supplied weapons to Daesh on order from Qatar [15].

On April 6, Lithuania, which in the past protected the western part of Ukraine in its own empire, enquired about the military situation [16]

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President Zelensky receives the Chairman of the Nato Military Committee on April 7, 2021.

On 6 and 7 April, British General Sir Stuart Peach, Chairman of the Nato Military Committee, visited Ukraine to clarify the reforms necessary for the country to join Nato [17].

On 9 April, in accordance with the Montreux Convention, the Pentagon informed Turkey of its intention to transit warships through the Dardanelles and Bosporus straits.

After discussing weapons and money with Sheikh Tamin in Qatar, President Zelinski came to talk about men with his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, on 10 April 2021.

On April 10, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan received his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky in Istanbul as part of regular consultations between the two nations [18]. In view of the Qatari endorsement, Nato member Turkey immediately began recruiting international jihadists in Syria to fight in the Ukrainian Donbass. Turkish military instructors were also sent to the Ukrainian port of Mariupol, the headquarters of the International Islamist Brigade [19], created by President Erdoğan and his then Ukrainian counterpart with Tatars loyal to Washington against Russia.

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Logically, the Russian Federation was amassing troops on the Ukrainian border. So its partners in the OSCE (Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe) questioned it about its manoeuvres. The Russian side only answered evasively. The Vienna Document (1999) obliges OSCE members to provide each other with all information on the movements of their troops and equipment. But we know that the Russians do not operate like the West. They never inform their people or their partners during an operation, only when their deployments are over.

Two days later, the G7 issued a statement expressing concern about Russian movements, but ignoring those of Nato and Turkey. It welcomed Ukraine’s restraint and called on Russia to “stop its provocations” [20].

On April 13, on the occasion of the NATO foreign ministers’ meeting with the Ukraine/NATO Commission, the United States pulled out all the stops. All the allies – none of whom wanted to die because the Ukrainians could not get a divorce – were invited to support Kiev and denounce Russia’s “escalation” [21]. Secretary of State Antony Blinken held extensive talks with his Ukrainian counterpart, Dmytro Kouleba [22]. War was inexorably on the way.

Suddenly, President Joe Biden lightened the mood by phoning his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin. He proposed a summit meeting, whereas Putin had dismissed the proposal for a public debate when he had insulted him [23]. After this initiative, war seemed avoidable.

On April 14, Antony Blinken, however, summoned his main allies (Germany, France, Italy and the UK) to mobilize them [24]

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.President Biden clarified his position on Russia on April 15, 2021.

On April 15, President Joe Biden gave his vision of the conflict, expelled ten Russian diplomats [25] He imposed sanctions on Russia, which was accused not only of rigging elections to get President Donald Trump elected, but also of offering bounties for the assassination of US soldiers in Afghanistan and of attacking federal computer systems using SolarWinds software.

Predictably, Russia expelled a similar number of US diplomats. In addition, it set a trap for a Ukrainian diplomat, who was caught in the act of espionage with classified documents in his hand.

Continuing on his path, President Volodymyr Zelensky went to meet his French and German counterparts, President Emmanuel Macron and Chancellor Angela Merkel. While deploring the Russian escalation and reaffirming their moral support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity, they were evasive about what would happen next. In the end, if the United States and Russia are to meet and discuss, it is a bit early to die for Kiev.

Thierry Meyssan

Translation

Roger Lagassé

[1Destined for War: Can America and China Escape Thucydides’s Trap?, Graham Allison, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (2017).

[2Interim National Security Guidance, White House, March 3, 2021. “President Biden’s National Security Strategy”, by Thierry Meyssan, Translation Roger Lagassé, Voltaire Network, 9 April 2021.

[3Annual Threat Assessment of the US Intelligence Community, Director of National Intelligence, April 9, 2021.

[4The Military Balance 2021, Institute for Strategic Studies, Routledge (2021).

[5] “Bucharest Summit Declaration”, Nato, April 3, 2008.

[6] “Who are the Nazis in the Ukrainian government?”, by Thierry Meyssan, Voltaire Network, 3 March 2014.

[7NATO’s Secret Armies: Operation GLADIO and Terrorism in Western Europe, Daniele Ganser, Routledge (2005).

[8] Presidential Order 121/2021.

[9] “Readout of Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III’s Call With Ukrainian Minister of Defence Andrii Taran”, US Department of Defense, April 2, 2021.

[10] “Zelensky on Russian troops near border: Ukraine is ready for any provocations”, Ukrinform, April 2, 2021.

[11] “UK defense secretary initiates talks with Taran due to escalation in eastern Ukraine”, Ukrinform, April 2, 2021.

[12] “Nagorno-Karabakh: victory of London and Ankara, defeat of Soros and the Armenians”, by Thierry Meyssan, Translation Roger Lagassé, Voltaire Network, 24 November 2020.

[13] “U.S. Should Provide Lend-Lease Type of Aid Package for Ukraine to Help it Upgrade its Air Force – Atlantic Council”, Defense Express, April 7, 2021.

[14] “Arakhamiya, Congressman Smith discuss expanding military support for Ukraine”, Ukrinform, March 5, 2021.

[15] “Qatar and Ukraine come to deliver Pechora-2D to ISIS”, by Andrey Fomin, Oriental Review (Russia) , Voltaire Network, 22 November 2015.

[16] “Ukrainian, Latvian defense ministers discuss security situation on Ukraine’s borders”, Ukrinform, April 7, 2021.

[17] “NATO Military Committee Chairman visits Ukraine”, NATO, April 6, 2021.

[18] “Turkey recruiting jihadists to send them to Ukraine ”, Voltaire Network, 18 April 2021.

[19] « L’Ukraine et la Turquie créent une Brigade internationale islamique contre la Russie », par Thierry Meyssan, Télévision nationale syrienne , Réseau Voltaire, 12 août 2015.

[20] “G7 Foreign Ministers statement on Ukraine”, Voltaire Network, 12 April 2021.

[21] “NATO-Ukraine Commission addresses security situation in and around Ukraine”, NATO , Voltaire Network, 13 April 2021.

[22] “Meeting of Antony Blinken and Dmytro Kouleba”, USA (Department of State) , Voltaire Network, 13 April 2021.

[23] “Joseph R. Biden, Jr. Call with Vladimir Putin”, USA (White House) , Voltaire Network, 13 April 2021.

[24] “Main allies meeting on Ukraine”, United States (Department of State) , Voltaire Network, 14 April 2021.

[25] “Remarks on Russia”, by Joseph R. Biden Jr., Voltaire Network, 15 April 2021.

https://www.voltairenet.org/article212801.html

Are The British Behind Czechia’s Surprise Decision To Expel Russian Diplomats?

By Andrew Korybko

18 APRIL 2021

Are The British Behind Czechia

Czechia’s surprise decision to expel a whopping 18 Russian diplomats on alleged espionage pretexts reeks of British meddling behind the scenes.

Strategic Context

All of Europe is discussing Czechia’s surprise decision to expel a whopping 18 Russian diplomats on alleged espionage pretexts as well as their curious claims that Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov of Skripal saga infamy were behind an accidental 2014 munitions depot explosion in the country. This follows hot on the heels of the US imposing its most intense sanctions against Russia since 2018, which itself occurred within the context of Ukraine’s unprovoked US-backed military escalation in Donbass. I posited that the purpose of the latter is actually to manufacture the political conditions whereby Europe’s possibly impending large-scale purchase of Sputnik V might become impossible, thereby indefinitely prolonging America’s fading hegemony over the continent seeing as how close epidemiological cooperation between Russia and the EU could in theory create the opportunity for an incipient rapprochement between them. I elaborated on this in my relevant analysis asking, “Are Vaccines The Real Driving Force Behind The Latest Donbass Destabilization?

The British-Russian “Deep State” Struggle In Europe

While a secret American hand obviously can’t be ruled out when it comes to Czechia’s surprise decision this weekend, it’s also worthwhile to explore the possibility that the British were meddling behind the scenes as well. The most obvious hint in this direction was the revival of the Skripal saga through Prague’s unsubstantiated allegations against Petrov and Boshirov. There’s more to it than just that, however, since I’ve been closely following British intelligence’s activities in Europe over the past year, as proven by the following analyses that I’ve published during that time which should be reviewed by interested readers:

* 30 April 2020: “The Czech Republic’s Russian Assassination Scandal Reeks Of The Skripal Conspiracy

* 3 June 2020: “MI6 Might Become The CIA’s Proxy For Stopping Europe From Moving Towards Russia

* 7 July 2020: “Britain Is Following Its Big Brother By Imposing So-Called Humanitarian Sanctions

* 22 February 2021: “Latvia’s Anti-Russian Hybrid War Exposes The Reality Of European Exceptionalism

* 24 February 2021: “Intrepid Journalists Exposed The UK’s Information-Driven Hybrid War On Russia

* 18 March 2021: “The UK Is Russia’s Greatest Security Threat In Europe Behind The US

To sum it all up for those who might not have the time to peruse those analytical pieces, the intelligence faction of the UK’s permanent military, intelligence, and diplomatic bureaucracies (“deep state”) is engaged in an active struggle against Russia all across Europe. The British are acting at America’s behest as its preferred “Lead From Behind” partner in this theater to facilitate their big brother’s divide-and-rule plans like they’ve traditionally done throughout the centuries (albeit before without doing so as anyone’s junior partner). In practice, this takes the form of information warfare and especially associated “spy” scandals such as the Skripal saga.

The Ukrainian-Belarusian Connection

The latest developments aren’t just tied to the US’ desire to obstruct Russian-EU epidemiological cooperation, but also to Ukraine and Belarus. Although Donbass remains a tinderbox, the prospects of all-out war there have seemingly somewhat diminished over the past week as Russia proved how resolute it is in defending both its border and fellow citizens in Eastern Ukraine in line with international law. For this reason, the US and its British partner might have thought to execute their back-up plan for dividing and ruling Russia and the EU via the latest “spy” scandal that their joint junior partner in Czechia just manufactured. Not only that, but Head of the Duma’s Committee on Foreign Affairs Leonid Slutsky publicly claimed that this latest provocation was timed to distract from Saturday night’s revelations that Russia detained two terrorists who were plotting to carry out a military coup in Belarus after assassinating President Lukashenko and his family. In other words, the Czech “spy” scandal is intended to kill several birds with one stone, thus making it a major Hybrid War provocation.

Concluding Thoughts

There’s little doubt that the US encouraged its junior partner in Czechia to manufacture the latest Russian “spy” scandal that erupted over the weekend, but observers should arguably investigate the supportive role that British intelligence might have also played in recent events. They, just like their American big brothers, have the desire to divide and rule Russia and the EU in order to expand their own influence in order to secure their economic intersts and especially those in strategic spheres such as the epidemiological one. Since Donbass has yet to explode like many predicted might have already happened by now (though such a worst-case scenario might still transpire in the coming future), it makes sense that the US and UK would initiate their back-up plan of manufacturing a major “spy” scandal just in case so as to continue advancing their interests despite the latest strategic setback (however temporary the latter might prove to be). Observers shouldn’t ever forget that wherever there’s an American intelligence footprint in Europe, there’s likely a British one not too far behind.

By Andrew Korybko

American political analyst

Russian Bombing Eliminates 200 Terrorists Near Tadmor (Palmyra), Syria

 ARABI SOURI 

Russian aerospace forces in Syria

Russian aerospace forces bombed a training camp near the city of Tadmor (Palmyra) killed at least 200 of US-sponsored ISIS-affiliated terrorists, the Russian Ministry of Defense said in a statement yesterday, 19 April 2021.

The bombing of the newly-erect base northeast of the central Syrian city of Tadmor also destroyed 24 machine-gun mounted SUV vehicles used by the terrorists, in addition to half a ton of ammunition the terrorists were using to make explosive devices.

Deputy Director of the Russian Coordination Center in Hmeimim, Marine Major General Alexander Karpov added in the statement conveyed by the Russian Ministry of Defense that ‘Terrorist groups are planning to launch terrorist operations and attacks on Syrian state institutions in large cities to destabilize the country ahead of the presidential elections, which are scheduled to take place on May 26,’ indicating that “terrorist training is taking place in their camps on lands outside the control of the Syrian state. This includes the Al-Tanf area, which is controlled by the American occupation forces.’

This is a considerable blow to the destructive efforts by the ‘most diverse and inclusive’ White House junta led by Biden against the Syrian state and the Syrian people, it’s also a message in the larger confrontation arena between the NATO alliance of neo-colonial countries and the real international community of independent countries by stripping the colonialists of one of their main assets in the region.

Russian forces deployed legally in Syria at the official request of the Syrian government help the Syrian armed forces and their allies in combatting NATO-sponsored terrorist groups, the likes of Al Qaeda and its derivatives including ISISTurkestan Islamist Party, Maghawir Thawra, HTS aka Nusra Front formerly known as Al Qaeda Levant, and others.

The Pentagon Threatening to Revive ISIS

https://syrianews.cc/the-pentagon-threatening-to-revive-isis/embed/#?secret=tAavTFDBKf

After Trump killed the Iranian top General Qasim Soleimani and his companion the Iraqi top commander Abu Mahdi Mohandis in a drone attack in Baghdad, the US Pentagon worked overtime to revive ISIS terrorist groups in the Syrian desert areas along with other groups loyal to the Turkish madman Erdogan and their Kurdish separatist terrorist lapdogs, a number of bloody attacks carried out by these terrorists killed and injured dozens of Syrian army personnel and civilians in the past few months alone.

180 Faylaq Al-Sham Terrorists Killed and Injured by a Russian Airstrike in Idlib

https://syrianews.cc/180-faylaq-al-sham-terrorists-killed-and-injured-by-a-russian-airstrike-in-idlib/embed/#?secret=K7zkjL6Lxj

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The deafening sound of silence in the West (OPEN THREAD #15)

The deafening sound of silence in the West (OPEN THREAD #15)

April 20, 2021

The story about the attempt to murder Lukashenko in much the same manner as Anwar Sadat (during a military parade) broke over the week-end, but even I was too tired to report it.  But on Monday I wrote a reasonably detailed column about it under the title “Did the US just try to murder Lukashenko“.  Much more relevantly, the Kremlin fully confirmed the story and the Russian media discussed it at length.  It also became known that Putin and Biden discussed this topic during their telephone call (ironic, no? Biden called Putin a ‘killer’ while the self same “Biden” tried to kill a foreign head of state).  What we are talking about here is both an act of international terrorism and a de facto act of war.

I was pretty sure that by today, Tuesday, the western media would be busy ridiculing and dismissing it all as “Russian disinformation” but, instead, there is nothing, not a word.  The “united West” simply totally ignored this information.

Even more puzzling is the total silence in the “alternative” free media and the blogosphere…

Then there is the truly comical Czech fairy tale about Petrov and Boshirov (the folks the Brits accused of poisoning Skripal) blowing up a weapons depot in 2014 (!).

Again, deafening silence.

But the upcoming death of Navalnyi is the one Russia-related topic the western media seems to be interested in.

Even RT and Sputnik seemed to be “covering” this very minimally and very reluctantly (these two have become so bad, I rarely even bother reading them, but that is another story).

My request today is this: if you do come across any reports discussing either the failed coup in Belarus or the Czech mental collapse, please post the links in the open thread below.  Maybe I missed all the “good” coverage the “free media” of the “allied western democracies” provided?

Finally, just to show you how different the mood is in Russia, check out this (wholly unscientific) readers survey by the Russian website Vzgliad (which I would describe as moderately patriotic, pretty close to the Russian mainstream):

Translation:

Question: Is it possible in the future to build friendly and partnership relations between Russia and the United States?

Answers:

Yes, in the short term: 1.05%
Yes, in the medium term: 4.57%
Yes, in the long run: 29.15%
no never: 65.24%

Which, in plain English, means that the Russians have basically given up on the US in total disgust.

They have also finally convinced US Ambassador to “voluntarily” leave Russia (he was apparently waiting to be expelled).

But, of course, the narcissistic West will never admit that it mostly elicits disgust and contempt from the vodka-guzzling Russian savages.  All of the above will be dismissed as yet more “Russian disinformation” and “Kremlin propaganda”.

And, in the meantime, the WP is urging Biden to meet with Svetlana Tikhanovskaya.  If ignorance is truly bliss, then these two will be in heaven together.

The Saker

PS: I forgot to add that the Czech version says that the Russians blew up that weapons depot because this was the depot from which the Czechs were sending weapons to both the Urkonazi regime in Kiev and to the “good terrorists” in Syria.  Interesting, no?  Is that not evidence that both the US and NATO were, in fact, arming both the Nazis in the Ukraine and the Takfiris in Syria? As I have said it many times, the united West will ally itself to even the Devil if that is against Russia.  This is the story of 1000 years of hatred for everything Russian and/or Orthodox.

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Tensions are running high between the United States and Russia. The two superpowers have imposed sanctions on each other, bringing their bilateral ties to a new low since the Cold War. Russia has unveiled counter sanctions against US by expelling and banning current and former US officials, warning the US to back away from confrontation.

The Highly Anticipated Syrian Presidential Elections

 ARABI SOURI  

Presidency of the Syrian Arab Republic - President of Syria

The speaker of the Syrian Parliament called for eligible candidates wishing to run in the presidential elections to submit their applications to the parliament’s chamber within 10 days starting the day before yesterday and to commence the next working day yesterday, Monday 19 April.

Candidates must meet a number of conditions to be eligible to run for the office as per the amended Syrian Constitution of 2012, the enemies of the Syrian people in the USA, the European Union, and their minions called the elections illegitimate, they couldn’t topple the Syrian government and install a puppet regime or regimes despite investing hundreds of billions of dollars of their citizen’s hard-earned tax money for that goal.

The Western officials put on their ugly faces and interfere in the Syrian internal affairs in all ways possible, they, at the same time, go hysterical over never-proved allegations of Russian intervention in the US elections!

After more than a decade of the US-led war of terror and war of attrition waged against the Syrian people, the Syrian people managed to clean up most of their country from much of the corruption and most of the terrorism, they adopted a modern constitution which, because of the US attempts to overthrow the Syrian government, now omits US puppets from running for the top executive office in Syria.

Candidates running for the Syrian President’s office must meet the following conditions:

  • To have completed 40 years of age.
  • To be a Syrian citizen by birth and of both Syrian parents.
  • To enjoy full civil and political rights, unindicted in a heinous felony, even if the candidate regained their rights.
  • Not to be married from a non-Syrian.

Most importantly:

  • To have been a resident in Syria for not less than 10 consecutive years by the time of submitting the application.

It is this last article that all US puppets groomed by NATO member states and their regional stooges are not eligible for the top post in Syria. The majority of them reside in hotels abroad on the account of their host countries, they did not fight against terrorists the likes of ISIS, Nusra Front, et al, they did not suffer along with the Syrian people hence they will not feel the needs of the Syrian people, and they do not have loyalty to the people who stood mostly alone against the world’s largest army of terrorists over an entire decade.

Our question to western citizens who ‘democratically’ elect their heads of states, presumably, in their countries, how do you accept your officials interfering in the internal affairs of an independent, sovereign country, an establishing member of the United Nations when you don’t like others interfering in your elections?

Furthermore, if it was for the author of this post, I wouldn’t allow any foreign observer from any country to monitor any elections in Syria unless their respective countries allow Syrian observers to monitor their elections in their countries.

The Syrian embassies in normal countries around the world have already started receiving applications of the Syrian citizens wishing to vote in this important and milestone elections, we will not be surprised if there will be calls by the US stooges abroad calling for boycotting the elections, they know they do not have any majority, not close to a sizable minority to be noticed if they do contribute.

The last 2014 elections was held under extremely difficult conditions with constant bombing by the US-sponsored terrorists targeting voting centers all over the country, intimidation campaigns against the Syrians abroad to boycott the elections, and after failing in achieving their goals with Syrians registering in their tens of thousands in the Syrian consular missions abroad, the USA forced its stooges to stop the process in the host countries. The scene of hundreds of thousands of displaced Syrians in Lebanon flooding the streets and chanting for President Assad at the height of the US propaganda against him should have been enough lesson had the USA had any tiniest shred of good intentions towards the Syrian people to stop pushing for regime change in the country.

So far, 2 candidates applied for the post, one is a former minister, the incumbent President Bashar Assad did not submit his application form yet, the deadline for submitting the applications ends on Wednesday, 28th of April. The candidates must receive the endorsements of at least 35 members of the current Syrian Parliament. The election date is set for the 26th of May 2021. Syria’s Supreme Constitutional Court is supervising the entire elections process.

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Important announcement by the Saker!

April 19, 2021

The Saker

Dear friends,

Recent events have forced me to take some important decisions which I have to share with you now.

First, from now on, the Saker blog shall not post any texts or videos from the four organizations which the US Treasury has declared “disinformation outlets controlled by Russian intelligence services”.  These are:

  • SouthFront
  • NewsFront
  • The Strategic Culture Foundation
  • InfoRos

I want to stress that in my opinion these organizations did nothing absolutely wrong and that accusation is as false as all the other accusations against Russia since 2013. I therefore apologize to all of them for having to take this decision.

The US government, however, feels otherwise and it is not my role to interfere in these issues.  Please understand that I am a guest of the United States (a “legal alien” in their terminology) and this morally obliges me to act as a guest and obey all the current US laws, irrespective of my personal assessment of these laws.

Furthermore, from now on, I will post no articles or videos which will discuss internal US politics (US foreign policy is fine).  Again, not only is it not my role as a foreign guest to interfere in internal US politics, and the Saker blog is mostly focused on international relations anyways.

Also, the Saker blog and its philosophy (see here for a sampling: http://thesaker.is/blogs-philosophy/) was always anti-war and anti-violence.  The moderators always intercepted any attempts to call for violence, without even the need for a special rule about this, this was common sense.  I just want to mention here that from today on even indirect or “humorous” “suggestions” for even limited violence of any kind will from now moderated even more strenuously than before.

And, finally, since I am doing some “Spring house cleaning” I have also decided to add a new rule to the moderation rules (which can all be found here: http://thesaker.is/moderation-policy/).  This is the full text of the new rule:

21) I am now also banning any advocacy of the following ideologies: 1) National-Socialism (Nazism, Fascism) 2) Wahabism (Takfirism) 3) Zionism (rabbinical “Judaism”, aka “Phariseism”) and 4) Latin Christianity (Papism, including the propaganda of the so-called “Marian apparitions” including the Fatima hoax). These are all messianic ideologies with a fantastic propensity (and, I would argue, a proven record) for deception and violence.  Frankly, I consider them all evil and even demonic in nature.  Discussion and criticism of these ideologies remain allowed, but direct attempts of advocacy/propaganda is from now on banned.  Adherents of these ideologies are welcome to conclude that I am a “censoring tyrant” who is afraid of their “truth” – that is quite fine by me since I truly don’t care about their opinions anyway.  If they don’t like it – let them open their own blogs 🙂  From now on, any attempts to peddle these ideologies on the Saker blog will result in 1) the comment being removed and 2) the author permanently banned.

There might be some amongst the reader who, for whatever reasons, will disapprove of these decisions.  To them I can only say the following: it is my profound conviction that these decisions are correct and that I had no other choice in the matter.  I am sorry if you feel otherwise.

Finally, I also have to ban comments under this announcement.  Again, I feel that this is the right thing to do but I cannot discuss this here.  I apologize for that.

However, feel free to email me with any (reasonable) comments, objections or suggestions (don’t bother with the usual hate mail).

Again, I ask for everybody’s understanding for the decisions I had to take and for the fact that I cannot go into any discussions about the motives that made me take these decisions.

Friends, I don’t like this any more than you do, but this is my “new normal” and going into deep denial will only make things worse.

Kind regards

The Saker

Sheikh Isa Qassim: New Constitution Sole Way out of Bahrain Crisis

20/4/2021

Sheikh Isa Qassim: New Constitution Sole Way out of Bahrain Crisis

By Staff, Agencie

Bahrain’s top cleric Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Qassim stressed that “Drawing up a new constitution is the only way out of the political crisis in the protest-hit kingdom.”

He further called on urging the regime in Manama to pursue an agreement with the Bahraini opposition instead of increasingly suppressing the dissidents.

“Since the people do not find anything to persuade themselves to stop their protest movement and are witnessing a surge in the [regime’s] policy of repression, dictatorship and marginalization, they are pressing ahead with their uprising, whatever the cost may be,” Sheikh Qassim said in a statement released on Monday and carried by the Bahrain Mirror news website.

His Eminence further highlighted: “There would be no way out of the current situation unless the government reaches an agreement with the opposition to draw up a new constitution and found relevant institutions so as to protect the citizens’ rights and recognize their sovereign position in the country’s politics.”

The senior cleric pointed out that “Reforms must be undertaken at a pace satisfactory to the public and must guarantee the authority, dignity, comfort, security and interests of all.”

This comes as Bahrain’s crackdown continues in Ramadan as regime forces attack political inmates in Jaw prison.  “There is a serious political and legal crisis in Bahrain, the consequences of which will be dangerous for both the nation and the government itself,” he stated.

He denounced the Manama regime over the “absurd” policy of putting more people behind bars, saying such a practice will not even benefit the “unjust political goal” being pursued by the Al-Khalifah regime.

“If the purpose of populating prisons with thousands of inmates is to tone down the demands for political and civil rights to mere calls for the release of prisoners, the calls among the prisoners themselves for the nation’s rights [to be guaranteed] will definitely thwart such a conspiracy,” Sheikh Qassem confirmed.

“The people of Bahrain are well aware of the fact that the solution to the country’s crisis lies only in a genuine improvement of the situation and establishment of a political relationship between the nation and the government on the basis of new and viable principles,” His Eminence elaborated.


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Continued lockdowns are a ticking time bomb that will cause a global health crisis in the near future

moi

April 14, 2021, RT.com

-by Eva K Bartlett

By continuing to push for lockdowns to ‘protect hospitals’, authorities worldwide are denying millions of cancer sufferers and other seriously ill people essential treatment. This will lead to many unnecessary deaths.

It is shocking that in 2021, surgeries for cancer and other critical ailments are being delayed. But thanks to the hysteria over overcrowded ICUs, staggering numbers of patients are being denied life-saving treatments for up to one year.

UK media recently reported a drop of around 350,000 urgent cancer referrals between March last year and January this year, compared to the same period in the previous 12 months. A researcher described the situation as a “ticking time bomb.” There has also been a decrease in surgeries and chemotherapy and radiology treatments, “with 44,000 fewer patients diagnosed with cancer starting treatment.”

This problem is not unique to Britain. Canadian provinces face similarly unacceptable numbers of delayed surgeries and treatments. As of April, Ontario has a backlog of 245,367 “medically necessary procedures.” A 60% drop in cancer surgeries was reported when the pandemic struck last March , leaving over 36,000 Ontario cancer patients in agonizing limbo.

During stay-at-home orders in 2020, some patients chose to avoid hospitals, either out of worry about becoming ill or through fear of being forcibly estranged from family and loved ones. But also, then and now, elective surgeries and treatments have been halted under the premise that ICUs are overwhelmed.

Ontario recently went into a new lockdown, and with it we saw an increase in alarmist reports of ICUs being crowded. And so elective surgeries have been stopped again. It’s worth bearing in mind that these are not necessarily cosmetic or trivial procedures, but refer to surgeries scheduled in advance, including those to treat cancer.

However, some Ontario doctors are now speaking out, providing anecdotal evidence that there are plenty of ICU doctors, and even that most are “underemployed.”

As I wrote last week, every year in flu season, we’ve had reports of overcrowding in hospitals, with some bursting at the seams.

But Ontario politicians and medical officers continue to claim that locking down is necessary to allow hospitals to cope with the influx of Covid patients.

Even if the figure of 109 new ICU hospitalizations of Covid cases between April 4 and 10 is correct, it’s worth pointing that Ontario’s population is just under 15 million. The province is locked down and surgeries are being halted because of a rise in ICU hospitalizations that equates to 0.007% of the population.

And while the media makes constant reference to the number of Covid cases, if you look at deaths attributed to the virus, the number is actually very low. As of April 13, Health Canada lists that number (for the last 14 days) as two in Ontario.

In my opinion, the reason for stopping elective surgeries has more to do with the ensuring the incessant alarmism around “rising cases” continues. Talk of “cases” is meaningless, as I’ve written about before, noting that the testing gives false positives. This was demonstrated by Tanzania’s late president when fruit he had tested for Covid came back positive.

A climate of fear also helps with the vaccine rollout and persuading the public into accepting rushed, potentially dangerous vaccines so that life can “go back to normal” and people can have the life-saving surgeries they are otherwise being denied.

On top of all this, there are also suggestions that the lockdowns are actually causing health issues. Common sense dictates that the lack of exercise and sunshine people have experienced, plus the increased stress and anxiety, despair, and loneliness, will affect their health and immune systems.

But there’s more.

In a tragic irony, some of the globally pushed measures to fight Covid have been shown to be dangerous. In addition to other negative results of prolonged mask wearing, there are types of face covering that potentially cause lung cancer. Canada’s state media highlighted the danger of some, noting: “One model of mask distributed to Quebec schools and daycares may be dangerous for the lungs as they could contain a potentially toxic material, according to a directive sent out by the provincial government.

“Health Canada conducted a preliminary risk assessment which revealed a potential for early lung damage associated with inhalation of microscopic graphene particles.”

Further, the goop people have been obsessively slathering on their hands can be toxic, containing cancer-causing benzene.

A recent Newsweek article spoke of “dangerous levels of benzene in 21 of 260 batches of hand sanitizer.” It stated, “In the case of hand sanitizers, benzene can enter the body through inhalation or absorption through the skin and is known to cause blood cancers such as leukemia.

This is hugely concerning when you consider that, among the disturbing measures children were forced to follow when at school this past year, they were made to regularly cover their hands in sanitizer.

Is all this really what we want? I can’t imagine the physical pain and psychological torture patients and loved ones are enduring, knowing that treatable cancer is spreading and there is no light at the end of the tunnel. Or that patients with heart conditions will just have to hang in there until the powers that be decide there is no ICU crisis.

It’s a very twisted reality we live in, where cancer surgery and operations needed to stay alive are now deemed surgeries that will just have to wait. It doesn’t need to be this way – and the ultimate irony is that it’s being done in the name of ‘public safety’.

RELATED:

Ontario has had the longest lockdown in North America – which has been so successful it’s just gone into another one

The cruelties we have inflicted on children under Covid-19 are unethical and immoral, we’re devastating a whole generation

Vive la lockdown révolution! Growing rebellion against draconian Covid restrictions by easygoing Canadians shows the world the way

Canadians, if you aren’t furious at the politicians flagrantly flouting the Covid safety measures they imposed, you should be

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كتاب مفتوح إلى رئيس وأعضاء مجلس القضاء الأعلى An open letter to the president and members of the Supreme Judicial Council

كتاب مفتوح إلى رئيس وأعضاء مجلس القضاء الأعلى

ناصر قنديل


تعقدون اجتماعاً اليوم، ربما تنتبهون أو لا تنتبهون إلى طابعه التاريخي بالنسبة لبلدكم لبنان، حيث كل شيء استثنائيّ. فالسلطة السياسية التي تشكل نواة النظام الدستوري معطلة ومنقسمة ومشوشة وتحكم مواقفها حسابات وتجاذبات دون مستوى التحديات، والسلطات المالية والنقدية التي كانت موضع ثقة وتقدير اللبنانيين لما بدا أنه نجاح في الحفاظ على سعر النقد والودائع، فقدت هذه الثقة مع انهيار سعر النقد وضياع الودائع، والسلطات العسكرية والأمنية ليست سلطات بالمعنى الدستوري، ولا تملك القيام بأكثر مما تقوم به من منع الانهيار الأمني والذهاب الى الفوضى، لكنكم تعلمون أن الأمل معدوم، وأن جوهر اليأس العام الذي يسيطر على اللبنانيين مصدره الشعور بأن لا مرجعية لإحقاق الحق، وهذه هي مهمة القضاء، الذي يعذره اللبنانيون في كثير من عناصر القصور والضعف، سواء لجهة غياب التشريعات التي تكرّس استقلاله كسلطة دستورية، او لجهة ضعف الإمكانات والمقدرات، او لجهة انعكاسات الإنقسام السياسيّ على الجسم القضائي، لكن إذا سقط الأمل بقدرة القضاء على إعادة بناء الأمل، فهذا يعني السقوط النهائي للوطن.

لا يطلب الناس من القضاء اليوم معجزة، ولا انتفاضة ولا ثورة، ولا حلولاً جذرية للمشكلات المزمنة، التي يجب التوجّه لطلب حلها الى غير القضاة، ولا يطلب اللبنانيّون في شؤون القضاء نفسها إنهاء كل القضايا العالقة، فما يطلبه اللبنانيون من القضاء هو أن يقول للبنانيين إنه في قضايا جوهرية واضحة وحساسة، تتصل بالملفات المالية وقضايا الفساد، ثمّة مرجعية يمكن الركون الى تحملها للمسؤولية، وهي المرجعية القضائية، التي تسقط أمامها وحدها بقوة القانون السرية المصرفية، وتسقط أمامها الحصانات لجهة الحق في توجيه الاتهام، وإن بقيت الحصانات في القدرة على إجراء المحاكمات بالنسبة للرؤساء والوزراء، والقضية عند اللبنانيين ليست في المحاكمة، بمقدار ما هي بتوجيه الاتهام، شرط أن يكون منصفاً ومبنياً على القانون، والقانون فقط.

تنظرون اليوم في مشكلة عنوانها، انتظام الجسم القضائي وفقاً لقواعد الهرمية والتراتبية، وهذا شأن يهمّ اللبنانيين، الذي لا يفرحهم أن يروا القضاء يتفكك وتدخل اليه الفوضى والانقسامات التي هشمت كل شيء، لكن السؤال الذي يشغل بال اللبنانيين هو بالتحديد، هل عليهم الاختيار بين صمت القضاء موحداً، وتفرّد صوت قضائي بدا لهم أنه يتجرأ على ملاحقة ما ينتظرون من القضاء أن يفعله مجتمعاً، أم أن الاختيار الذي ستضعونه أمام اللبنانيين هو بين فوضى قضائية لا تصل بالقضايا المفتوحة حتى نهاياتها لأن قانونيّتها مشوبة بالتجاوزات، وبين تماسك قضائي نشط وفعّال في ملاحقة شجاعة لكل القضايا الساخنة، والسير بها حتى نهاياتها، وهي محصنة بقوة القانون وصلابة الجسم القضائي، فإن كان الخيار الأول هو المعروض، فالأزمة تكون قد نخرت القضاء وأطاحت بآخر حصون الأمل، وإن كان الخيار الثاني فاللبنانيون سيصفقون للقضاء ويحمونه ويشكلون متراساً أمامياً للدفاع عنه.

كان الرئيس سليم الحص، عافاه الله وأمدّ بعمره، يقول إن الأوطان عندما تكون أمام قضية غالباً ما تواجه مشكلة ناجمة عن القضية، وتنشأ الأزمة الوطنية عن انقسام الناس بين أهل القضية وأهل المشكلة، فتضيع البوصلة عند البعض، وينصرف لمواجهة المشكلة ولو أدّى ذلك الى موت القضية، بينما يتمسك أهل القضية بالدفاع عنها متجاهلين المشكلة، وكان كلامه في معرض شرح أسباب الحرب في لبنان والانقسام حول القضية الفلسطينية المحقة التي نتج عن أحقيّتها حمل اللاجئين الفلسطينيين للسلاح طلباً لحق العودة، ونتج عن هذا السلاح مشكلة عنوانها المساس بالسيادة، وصار اللبنانيون نصفاً يدافع عن أحقية القضية وهو حق، ونصفاً ثانياً يدافع عن السيادة، وهو حق، والأزمات الوطنية تنشأ عندما يصطدم الحق بحق آخر، وكان الرئيس الحص يخلص الى القول إن الأصل يبقى بالتمسك بالقضية والسعي لحل المشكلة تحت سقف الحفاظ على القضية. والقضية اليوم هي قيام القضاء بفتح ملفات الفساد والخراب المالي وضياع الودائع وتهريب الأموال الى الخارج، والمشكلة هي الانتظام القضائي وتراتبيته، والتحدي أمام القضاء هو بإثبات أهليته وقدرته على انتزاع ثقة اللبنانيين بأنه لم يقتل القضية ليحل المشكلة، وأنه قادر على ملاحقة كل القضايا التي يريد اللبنانيون رؤيته يذهب بها من العتمة الى الضوء، وهو يحمي تراتبيته والتزام الصلاحيات، ويحصن قراراته وإجراءاته بإغلاق كل النوافذ التي قد تطعن بصدقيّة أية ملاحقة قانونية.

النموذج الذي حمله قرار مدعي عام التمييز بإحالة ملف التحويلات المالية الى المدعي العام المالي، وما تضمّنه من طلب التحقيق في مطابقة التحويلات مع النصوص الإجرائيّة، لا يشكل الجواب المطلوب والذي ينتظره اللبنانيّون الذين يعلمون أن كل التحويلات، التي تمت إلى الخارج منذ عام 2017 والبالغة 40 مليار دولار استباقاً للأزمة التي كان يعلم بها عدد قليل من أصحاب السطوة والنفوذ في الأوساط المالية والسياسية، واستمرت خلال الأزمة وبعد انفجارها، قد استوفت الإجراءات المطلوبة، فهي حوّلت أموالاً يملك أصحابها حق التصرف بها، وسلكت طريق الحصول على الموافقات المصرفيّة والإداريّة. فهل هذه هي القضيّة، مرة أخرى عدنا الى القضية والمشكلة، القضيّة هي كيف حصل هؤلاء على فرصة تحويل أموالهم وحرم منها لبنانيون آخرون، ولماذا حوّل بعضهم أموالهم، وهم عندما فعلوا ذلك كانوا يقومون بتهريبها من لبنان، وهو ما يسمّى قانوناً بالإسهام بإضعاف النقد الوطني، لأنهم لم يفعلوا ذلك لتسديد مستحقات ولا بهدف توظيفها او استخدامها، بل لأنهم علموا بأن النظام المالي والمصرفي ذاهب إلى الانهيار. فهل سيعطينا التحقيق الجواب على هذه الأسئلة، أم أنه سيكتفي مرة أخرى بمعالجة المشكلة بقتل القضية؟


مقالات ذات صلة


مقالات ذات صلة


An open letter to the president and members of the Supreme Judicial Council

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Nasser Kandil

-You are holding a meeting today, you may or may not pay attention to its historical character in your country, Lebanon, where everything is exceptional. The political authority that forms the nucleus of the constitutional system is disrupted, divided and confused, and its positions are governed by accounts and interactions below the level of challenges, and the financial and monetary authorities that were the subject of confidence and appreciation of the Lebanese for what appeared to be success in maintaining the price of cash and deposits, lost this confidence with the collapse of the currency rate and the loss of deposits, and the military authorities Security forces are not authorities in the constitutional sense, and they do not have the power to do more than they do in preventing security breakdown and going into chaos, but you know that hope is absent, and that the essence of the general despair that dominates the Lebanese comes from the feeling that there is no reference point for realizing the truth. This is the task of the judiciary, which the Lebanese excuse for many of the shortcomings and weaknesses, whether in terms of the absence of legislation that consecrates its independence as a constitutional authority, or with regard to the weakness of capabilities, or in terms of the repercussions of the political division on the judicial body, but if hope is lost in the ability of the judiciary to rebuild hope This means the final fall of the homeland.

– People are not asking the judiciary today for a miracle, no uprising, no revolution, nor radical solutions to persistent problems, whose solution must be directed to other than the judges, and the Lebanese do not ask in the judiciary affairs themselves to end all pending cases. What the Lebanese are asking from the judiciary is to tell the Lebanese that it is In clear and sensitive core issues related to financial files and corruption cases, there is a reference that can be relied upon to bear responsibility, and it is the judicial reference, before which alone by the force of the law banking secrecy falls, and immunities in respect of the right to press charges are waived, even if immunities remain in the ability to conduct trials As for the presidents and ministers, the issue for the Lebanese is not in the trial, as much as it is in the indictment, provided that it is fair and based on the law and only the law.

Today you are looking at a problem whose title is: the regularity of the judicial body according to the rules of hierarchy and hierarchy, and this is a matter of concern to the Lebanese, who are not happy to see the judiciary disintegrate and enter into chaos and divisions that have broken everything, but the question that preoccupies the Lebanese is precisely whether they have to choose between the silence of the judiciary Unified, and the uniqueness of a judicial voice that seemed to them dare to pursue what they are waiting for the judiciary to do collectively, or is the choice that you will make before the Lebanese is between judicial chaos that does not reach open cases to their ends because their legality is tainted by transgressions, and between active and effective judicial coherence in the courageous pursuit of each Hot issues, and walk them to their ends, and It is fortified with the force of law and the rigidity of the judiciary. If the first option is the one presented, then the crisis will have devoured the judiciary and toppled the last bastions of hope, and if the second option is, the Lebanese will applaud and protect the judiciary and form a frontier to defend it.

-President Salim Al-Hoss used to say that the homelands, when they are facing an issue, often face a problem arising from the issue, and the national crisis arises from the division of people between the people of the cause and the people of the problem, so the compass is lost for some, and he turns to face the problem even if that leads to death The case, while the people of the case insisted on defending it, ignoring the problem, and his speech was in the context of explaining the causes of the war in Lebanon and the division over the rightful Palestinian cause, which resulted in its entitlement to bear arms for Palestinian refugees seeking the right of return. On the right of the case and it is a right, and a second half defends sovereignty, which is a right, and national crises arise when a right collides with another right, and President Al-Hoss concluded by saying that the principle remains by adhering to the issue and seeking to solve the problem under the roof of preserving the issue. The issue today is that the judiciary opened files of corruption, financial ruin, loss of deposits, and smuggling of funds abroad, and the problem is judicial regularity and hierarchy, and the challenge before the judiciary is to prove its competence and ability to extract the confidence of the Lebanese that he did not kill the case to solve the problem, and that he is able to pursue all the cases that the Lebanese want. His vision is to take it from the dark to the light, and he protects his hierarchy and commitment to the powers, and fortifies his decisions and procedures by closing all windows that may challenge the credibility of any legal prosecution.

-The model carried by the Public Prosecutor’s decision to refer the file of remittances to the Financial Prosecutor General, and what it contained in the investigation request for matching transfers with the procedural texts, does not constitute the required response that is awaited by the Lebanese who know that all transfers, which have been made abroad since 2017, amounting to 40 One billion dollars in anticipation of the crisis that a small number of holders of power and influence in the financial and political circles knew about, and it continued during the crisis and after its explosion, had fulfilled the required procedures, as it transferred funds that the owners have the right to dispose of, and took the path of obtaining bank and administrative approvals. Is this the case? Once again we returned to the issue and the problem, the issue is how did these people get the opportunity to transfer their money and were deprived of it by other Lebanese, and why did some of them transfer their money, and when they did that they were smuggling it from Lebanon, which is legally called contributing to weakening the national currency, Because they did not do this to pay dues or to employ or use them, but because they knew that the financial and banking system was going to collapse. Will the investigation give us the answer to these questions, or will it once again settle for solving the problem by killing the case?

Did the US just try to murder Lukashenko? (OPEN THREAD #14) (UPDATED)

Did the US just try to murder Lukashenko? (OPEN THREAD #14) (UPDATED)

April 19, 2021

Amazing news over the week-end: President Lukashenko has declared that Biden gave the order to kill him in a coup organized by the CIA.  Now, we all know that Lukashenko says all sorts of things, many of them false or plain silly.  Except that the Russian FSB has confirmed it all!  According to the Russians, a joint operation of the (Bielorussian) KGB and the Russian FSB has uncovered the plot early on and the Russians monitored the full operation until they had enough evidence to arrest all the plotters.  Not only do the Russians have videos of their meetings, they also intercepted their Zoom videoconferences (Zoom users, use Jitsi instead!).

So far so good.  But it gets better!

Unlike the US/UK and others, the Russian FSB did not say that they were “confident” that it was “highly likely” that this operation took place.  They released all the footage of a meeting of the plotters in Moscow which confirms it all (I don’t have the time to translate that footage, but I am confident that somebody will – if you come across an English language translation, please post it in the comments section below!).

One not familiar with such operations might be baffled over why this meeting took place in Moscow and not in Warsaw or Riga.  There are several reasons for that:

  • There is a practically open border between Belarus and Russia, which form “а unified state”, and there is nothing easier for the (supposed) Bielorussian traitors (from the military) to jump in a car and get to Moscow.
  • Using Warsaw or Riga would dramatically reduce what the CIA calls “plausible deniability” for the US and NATO.
  • Yes, meeting in Moscow was still stupid, but no more stupid than the failed US coup to do to Maduro when the US did exactly what they tried to do to Lukashenko.  The fact that both operations failed is par for the course for the (mostly clueless) CIA.
  • The main plotter, a very well-known anti-Lukashenko activist, is a double national Bielorussian and US American and for him to move to Minsk for that meeting would be very dangerous.
  • Last, but not least, the Bielorussian KGB operates in a very tightly controlled Bielorussian society whereas Russian is an open and liberal society, so one could have (mistakenly) thought that a meeting in Moscow would have been a better idea.

Interesting story, no?

Also, if you wonder whether it is credible that the FSB saved Lukashenko – I will remind you that it was the Russians who saved Erdogan from a US-backed coup which was also supposed to include Erdogan’s murder (the Turks practically admitted it publicly several times).

But it gets even better!

As soon as the accusation of a CIA plan to murder Lukashenko in a coup came out, they did what they always do: denied it against all evidence and created a huge distraction: the US colony known as the “Czech Republic” declared that the explosion of a weapons depot in the Czech Republic in 2014 was a Russian sabotage involving…   … wait for it… … drum roll…. the very same Petrov and Boshirov whom the UK accused of poisoning the Skripals!

Friends, the Czechs released this story withing ONE HOUR of the Bielorussian news!  One hour, seriously!

The Czechs immediately expelled 18 Russian diplomats and the Russian reciprocated by expelling 20 Czech diplomats leaving only 5 in Moscow.  So if we use the English expression about the “shitting hitting the fan”, then it would also be fair to refer to the Czechs as “shit shields” for the Empire 🙂

By the way, the official Czech investigation in 2014 concluded that the explosion was caused by negligence, not sabotage but, really, who cares?  After all, look at these accusations, all as unproven and as silly as this one: (partial list in no special order)

  • Russian invaded the Donbass
  • Russia shot down MH-17
  • Russia tried to poison the Skripals
  • Russia murdered Berezovskii
  • Russia tried to poison Litvenenko
  • Russia tried to poison Navalnyi
  • Russia murdered Boris Nemtsov
  • Russia murdered Politkovskaia
  • Russia tried to poison Yushchenko
  • Russia interfered in two US elections
  • Russia hacked the DNC computers
  • Russia paid Afghans to kill US soliders
  • The Russian shot down the aircraft of the Polish president over Smolensk
  • The Russian tried to organize a coup in Montenegro
  • The Russians organized the movement for an independent Catalonia

To repeat, none, NONE of these accusations were ever proven or even substantiated.  ALL of these accusations are solely based on the putatively undeniable credibility of the western special services.

And, of course, the western “Russia experts” all fully endorsed this nonsense (hey, that is what these so-called “experts” are paid to do; as somebody who once was a member of the IISS, I know these “experts” and their “expertise” well enough – I even resigned from the IISS in protest over its total subservience to US anti-Russian narratives).

And people who call themselves “democrats” and people capable of critical thought buy all this shit with no doubts whatsoever, none.  They don’t even see how pathetic and clueless they really are…

So the Czechs (and their US masters) are running a well rehearsed and “safe” track because they all know that the western audience is fully accustomed to hear the following:

We accuse Russia of X, we say that our special services have evidence, but we won’t present any; as for the western media, they will, of course, trust the western special services, because they are “democratic” and, therefore, “trustworthy” (Iraq anybody?!).

Another trick, which the Czechs used in this case, is this: on the first day announce urbi et orbi that “we will soon release all the incontrovertible evidence we have” and then simply declare it classified because it is important not to show the Russians the evidence of their own, putatively Russian, operation.  As for the western press, they, of course, simply forget about that and go onto the the next Russia bashing story.

It is simple, but with the kind of sheep the western regimes deal with, it is also effective.

Finally, when truly desperate, you can count on the MI6 run Bellincat to get their “evidence”, I kid you not, from the social media on the Internet.

And, again, the western sheep “eat it all up”, with appetite and gusto!  Sic transit gloria mundi indeed!

Still, accusing the self same two putative GRU agents Petrov and Boshirov shows how desperate the Czechs were too cook up some story literally overnight.  Now they look stupid beyond any conceivable explanations for such a massive and, frankly, hilarious faceplant.

Will the people of the Czech Republic now revolt in outrage against the sheer idiocy of their leaders?  Nah, of course not.  After all, we are living in a post-truth (and, I would argue, post-logical) world where the only thing which matters is to follow the SS motto of “my honor is fidelity” and blind obedience to the masters of the day.

What about the US in all this?  Would “Biden” really be crazy enough to try to murder a foreign leader?

Well, as I like to say, past behavior is the best predictor of future behavior, right?  How many foreign leaders has the CIA actually murdered and how many did she only try, and fail, to murder?  (Note: somebody ought to compare the number of foreign leaders murdered by the US and the USSR.  I am sure that the comparison would be both shocking and very telling).  How about the official (White House admitted) murder of General Soleimani?  Was that operation not far more dangerous than to use locals to try to assassinate a weakened and embattled leader like Lukashenko?

So, you tell me: true story of “Russian disinformation”?

The Saker

PS: in case you wonder, the Russians are laughing hysterically and scratching their heads wondering what in the world happened to a once civilized western society.

PPS: by the way, the Russian FSB also arrested the Ukie consul in Saint Petersburg at the moment when he was receiving classified information from what he thought was an agent.  He will be expelled.  It was a great week end for the FSB – there will be lost of medals handed out for this good work.

UPDATE1:  Maria Zakharova, the Foreign Ministry’s chief spokeswoman has now officially confirmed it all on Russian TV.

UPDATE2: The Kremlin just confirmed the Putin and Biden discussed this topic during their telephone conference.

UPDATE3: Got to love the western media, not a word about the coup, all about the Czech fairy tale.

Fatah, PLO: No Elections without Jerusalem

April 19, 2021

East Jerusalem. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Member of Fatah’s Central Committee and the PLO’s Executive Committee Azzam Al-Ahmad yesterday reiterated that the PLO and Fatah will not accept carrying out elections without Jerusalem.

Speaking to Voice of Palestine radio, Al-Ahmad said:

“Israel continues its aggressive policies against Jerusalem – the capital of the state of Palestine,” pointing to the increasing raids on Al-Aqsa Mosque, settlement expansion, house demolitions, and the prevention of Palestinian activities. Regarding the elections, he said: “Israel started to put obstacles ahead of carrying out the elections such as preventing Fatah candidates from holding consultation meetings.”

“We, the Palestinian leadership, and the people of Jerusalem have insisted from the beginning that this is our land and the capital of our state and it is our right to have its people participate in the democratic process in order to renew the legitimacy of their leadership,” he stressed.

Al-Ahmad said that the Palestinian Authority had sent a letter to Israel regarding carrying out elections in Jerusalem, adding that the EU and other world countries had taken similar steps but Israel “ignores these letters.”

The senior Fatah and PLO leader stressed that this election will be a form of resistance against the Israeli occupation, noting that this issue of election in Jerusalem would be discussed during the Fatah Central Committee and PLO Executive Committee meetings.

(MEMO, PC, Social Media)

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