Trump and Netanyahu to “the abstention from the settlements” or “the resetting” ترامب ونتنياهو إلى الممانعة أو «التصفير»

Trump and Netanyahu to “the abstention from the settlements” or “the resetting”

Written by Nasser Kandil,

The meeting which brought together the US President Donald Trump and the Head of the government of the occupation Benjamin Netanyahu has paved the way for the speculations and the questions about the possibility to translate the escalating rhetoric on which each one depends and how to translate it. Some people wonder whether the choice is the war either on Iran or Hezbollah, but this analysis ignored the fact that this meeting has occurred after many interventions in the Middle East where the US and the Israeli armies failed, because of their inability to make blood, but the reason of the failure was not the inaction or the cowardice of the US Presidents George Bush, Bill Clinton, or Barack Obama. The armies did not get out of the battlefields and gave the banner to the intelligence to create strife but only after they exhausted all the opportunities of investing on the destructive fiery surplus power, and the capacities of intimidation, to the extent of the inability to overcome the two obstacles for which America waged the war, and has occupied Afghanistan and Iraq to besiege them, namely Iran and Syria. Israel has shared the failure with America through its two big wars against the resistance in Lebanon and Palestine in 2006 and 2008.

Trump and Netanyahu met after the strategic slogan of Israel became the restoration of the deterrence ability, and after the war became the last choice for Israel to achieve this goal,  so it hid behind a wall through which it disconnects the Palestinian areas to avoid the consequences of the Palestinian uprisings and behind the Iron Dome Weapon to avoid the rockets of the resistance movements, while Trump is preparing himself to hide behind the customs wall through which he  protects the US goods from competition, that is related which the wall which he started to build on the borders with Mexico, and behind a media dome through which he shows himself strong through the declarations and positions, and whenever his position collides with his weakness, it is substituted with more flexible and less strict position as the safe zone in Syria, the transfer of the US embassy to Jerusalem, and the seeking to blow up the nuclear agreement with Iran, so his boastings move to other places once to Europe and once to Australia and once to China.

Trump and Netanyahu stand on the top of similar pyramids in configuration and culture, while the inability to make blood unites them in the language of war. The settlement was the origin of the emergence of their entities politically and demographically, the slogan of the Promised Land is the doctrine of the American and the Zionist dreams, but they share also the contradiction between the ability to go to war and the culture of arrogance which drives for escalation, between the weakness in the fields and its effect on the growth of extremism in the positions, where the ruling institution becomes weak according to the voters and becomes in need of a populist speech to regain their loyalty, therefore, the racism  waves and the language of war spread, but when they collide with the ability they turn into negotiating  cards. The problem of the two entities is the same; it is the inability to go to war and the inability to make peace, so today each one of them is protecting by raising the cost of his partnership in the settlements through the philosophy of the abstention from the settlements and the solutions, which the forces of the resistance have resorted to when they were at the state of weakness in making wars, and when the proposed settlements were inappropriate with the minimum limits of its constants. It is an exchange of positions and roles between the forces of hegemony and the aggression and the resistance forces.

What is going on in Washington between Trump and Netanyahu is resetting the files of the settlements from all the points of the axioms and the constants in order to begin from the zero-understandings, and the seeking to get a new cost for every step in the ladder of understanding. This is what is done by Trump toward Russia, China, and Iran and this is what is done by Netanyahu toward the Palestinian cause, but both of them need the negotiations as a path for confrontation and both of them are afraid from the cost of the negotiations which reflect the balances of powers so they try to simplify them. It is the time of resetting and linking the dispute, not the time of the war or the settlements.

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

 

ترامب ونتنياهو إلى الممانعة أو «التصفير»

فبراير 16, 2017

ناصر قنديل

– فتح اللقاء الذي جمع الرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب برئيس حكومة الاحتلال بنيامين نتنياهو الباب للتكهنات والتساؤلات حول إمكانية ترجمة الخطاب التصعيدي الذي يلتقي عليه كلاهما، وكيفية هذه الترجمة. ويتساءل البعض عما إذا كان الخيار هو الحرب سواء نحو إيران، أو حزب الله، ويتجاهل هذا التحليل حقيقة أنّ اللقاء يجري بعدما جرت مياه كثير في أنهار الشرق الأوسط، سقطت فيها الجيوش الأميركية و«الإسرائيلية» في ضعف القدرة على بذل الدماء، ولم يكن سبب الفشل فيها التراخي والتخاذل من رئيس أميركي اسمه جورج بوش أو بيل كلينتون أو باراك أوباما. فالجيوش لم تخرج من ساحات الحرب وتسلّم الراية للمخابرات لتصنع الفتن إلا بعدما استنفدت كل فرص الاستثمار على فائض القوة التدميري والناري وإمكانيات الترهيب ووصلت إلى العجز عن تذليل العقبتين اللتين خرجت أميركا للحرب لأجلهما واحتلت أفغانستان والعراق لتطويقهما، وهما إيران وسورية. وتلاقت «إسرائيل» بالفشل مع أميركا في حربيها الكبيرتين ضد المقاومة في لبنان وفلسطين في عامي 2006 و2008.

– يلتقي ترامب ونتنياهو بعدما صار شعار إسرائيل الاستراتيجي ترميم قدرة الدرع، وصارت الحرب آخر ما تفكر به «إسرائيل» لتحقيق هذه الغاية، فانكفأت خلف جدار وقبة، جدار تقطع به أوصال المناطق الفلسطينية لتجنّب تبعات الانتفاضات الفلسطينية، وقبّة صاروخية لتتفادى عبرها صواريخ حركات المقاومة، بينما يستعد ترامب للاحتماء خلف جدار وقبة، جدار جمركي يحمي البضائع الأميركية من المنافسة ويتصل بالجدار الذي بدأ ببنائه على الحدود مع المكسيك، وقبة إعلامية يصطنع بها عبر التصريحات والمواقف مظهر القوة، وكلما اصطدم موقف بحقيقة الضعف يحلّ مكانه موقف أشدّ ليونة وأقل تصلباً، كما في المنطقة الآمنة في سورية ونقل السفارة الأميركية إلى القدس والسعي لنسف الاتفاق النووي مع إيران، لتنتقل العنتريات إلى مسرح آخر مرة نحو أوروبا وأخرى نحو أستراليا وثالثة نحو الصين.

– ترامب ونتنياهو يقفان على رأس هرمين متشابهين في التكوين والثقافة. العجز عن بذل الدماء يجمعهما في لغة الحرب، والاستيطان كان أصل نشوء كيانيهما سياسياً وديمغرافياً، وشعار أرض الميعاد عقيدة الحلم الأميركي والحلم الصهيوني، لكنهما يتشاركان أيضاً في التناقض بين العجز عن الحرب وثقافة الغطرسة التي تدفع للتصعيد، بين الضعف في الميادين وتأثيره على نمو التطرف في المواقف، حيث تضعف المؤسسة الحاكمة نحو الناخبين وتحتاج خطاباً شعبوياً لكسب ودّهم، وتنطلق موجات العنصرية ولغة الحروب، لكنها عندما تصطدم بجدار القدرة تتحوّل أوراقاً تفاوضية. ومشكلة الكيانين واحدة في العجز عن صناعة الحرب والعجز عن صناعة السلام، ولهذا يحتمي كل منهما اليوم برفع سعر شراكته في التسويات، عبر فلسفة الممانعة، التي لجأت إليها قوى المقاومة يوم كانت في وضع الضعف عن صناعة الحروب وعدم ملاءمة المعروض من التسويات لثوابت الحد الأدنى لديها. هو تبادل مواقع وأدوار بين قوى الهيمنة والعدوان مع قوى المقاومة.

– ما يجري في واشنطن بين ترامب ونتنياهو هو تصفير ملفات التسويات من كل نقاط البديهيات والثوابت للانطلاق من صفر تفاهمات، والسعي لتحصيل ثمن جديد لكل خطوة في سلم التفاهم. هذا ما يفعله ترامب مع روسيا والصين، إيران، وهو ما يفعله ذاته نتنياهو تجاه القضية الفلسطينية، لكنّ كليهما يحتاج المفاوضات كمسار لتمييع المواجهة، وكليهما يخشى من المفاوضات أثمانها التي تعكس موازين القوى، فيسعى لتمييعها أيضاً. هو زمن التصفير وربط النزاع، وليس زمن الحرب ولا زمن التسوية.

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Nikki Haley Calls Apartheid Israel ‘the one true democracy in the Middle East’

Out of all of Trump’s appointees, Nikkie Haley is probably one of the worst. Formerly a governor of South Carolina, Haley is the current US ambassador to the United Nations. That’s her in the video above giving a presentation at the UN last Thursday.

I’m not sure how much Haley knows about international law. According to Wikipedia, she graduated from Clemson University with a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting. How she ended up as UN ambassador, after criticizing Trump in the general election, is unclear. *

At any rate, Haley seems fully unaware that Israeli settlements are illegal under international law. Nor does she seem to comprehend why other UN-member states might press for resolutions seeking to call Israel to account, both for its settlements as well as its 50-year occupation of the West Bank–land universally recognized as necessary for a Palestinian state. So perhaps she is simply uninformed and does not understand the nature of Israel’s occupation or its devastating impact upon the lives of those forced to live under it. Or at least that’s one possibility.

The other possibility, of course, is that Haley does understand these things…and that she simply believes Israel is exceptional and should not have to follow the same laws and international standards that apply to other states. If so, apparently in Israel are those who would agree with her. Less than a week after her talk at the UN–in which she accused the body of a “prejudiced approach to Israeli-Palestinian issues”–an Israeli military court handed down an 18-month sentence to an Israeli soldier who carried out an execution-style slaying of a wounded Palestinian in March of last year. There was no doubt the soldier was the one who pulled the trigger. The shooting was captured live on video. The sentence of 18 months he received for killing a Palestinian is lighter than what Palestinian children are often given for throwing stones.

* Incredibly, Haley also voiced criticism of Trump–over his stance on Russia–during her congressional confirmation hearings back in January. At that time she accused Russia of “war crimes,” and said, “They (the Russians) have done some terrible atrocities.”

Homs: Syrian, Russian Aircraft Using Cutting-Edge Anti-Tank Missiles in War on Terrorism

Homs: Syrian, Russian Aircraft Using Cutting-Edge Anti-Tank Missiles in War on Terrorism

TEHRAN (FNA)- Media sources disclosed that the Syrian and Russian fighter jets and choppers have been using very advanced Vikhr-1 anti-tank missiles in battle against terrorists in Homs province.

The Russian language Rossiyskaya Gazeta daily disclosed that photos of Vikhr-1 anti-tank missiles released on the internet have been taken from K-52 choppers’ anti-terrorists operation near al-Quaryatayn town in Southwestern Homs.

The Vikhr-1 missiles have been designed for warplanes and military helicopters to be used against tanks and armored vehicles.

The missiles can also be used against aerial targets that can’t fly very fast.

The Russian army started to equip its aircraft, specially Sukhoi-25 M fighter jets and K-52 choppers with the Vikhr-1 missiles in 2015.

The Vikhr-1 anti-tank missiles can hit a target at 10km distance in less than 28 seconds.

The missiles can also be fired by aircraft from a 4,000-meter distance above the target.

Reports said on Friday that the Russian military advisors in Syria kicked off the long process of rebuilding the Syrian Army troops after almost 6 years of war on terrorists across the country.

Russian military advisors started training hundreds of Syrian Army recruits in the Qalamoun mountains, as part of the first stage of the rebuilding process.

Engineering and infantry units of the Syrian Army were the first group in Damascus province that took part in the rebuilding process, while other training sessions were done in different regions of Syria.

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National Security Adviser General McMaster: The War Complex’ Resident Parrot

February 22, 2017 (Tony Cartalucci – NEO) – It was recently announced that US President Donald Trump selected US Army Lieutenant General Herbert Raymond McMaster as his National Security Adviser.

The New York Times in their article, “Trump Chooses H.R. McMaster as National Security Adviser,” would report:

President Trump appointed Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster as his new national security adviser on Monday, picking a widely respected military strategist known for challenging conventional thinking and helping to turn around the Iraq war in its darkest days.

In reality, what President Trump has done, is select a man who will bring very little of his own thoughts with him to the position. Instead, he will – verbatim – repeat the talking points, reflect the agenda of, and serve the interests driving the collection of corporate-financier funded think tanks that devise – and have devised for decades – US-European foreign policy.

What General McMaster Represents

In a talk given at one such think tank, the Center for Strategic and International Studies – funded by corporations such as ExxonMobil, Hess, Chevron, and Boeing and chaired by individuals including President Trump’s Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson and representatives from Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, and Betchel – General McMaster provides a well-rehearsed pitch collectively reflecting the worldview hashed out by not only the CSIS itself, but admittedly the worldview and objectives of the Brookings Institution, the Council on Foreign Relations, and a myriad of other special-interest driven policy think tanks.

The talk, published on CSIS’ YouTube channel in May of 2016, features General McMaster in his military uniform accusing Russia of “invading Ukraine” and China of  “challenging US interests at the far reaches of American power.” When describing China’s “challenging” of US interests, he presents a map of China itself and the surrounding South China Sea – quite decidedly nowhere near the United States or any logical or legitimately proximal sphere of influence Washington could justify in maintaining.

General McMaster predicates allegations that Russia and China pose a threat to “US interest” abroad – not US national security itself – by challenging the post World War 2 international order – an order admittedly created by and for the US and its European allies, granting them military, sociopolitical, and financial unipolar hegemony over the planet.

He predictably lists North Korea and Iran as threats to the US as well, despite neither nation attacking the US nor possessing a desire or capability to do so. He accuses Iran in particular of “fighting a proxy war against us since 1979,” referring to when Iranians finally, successfully overthrew the US-installed and buttressed brutal dictatorship of Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi in 1979.

General McMaster accuses Iran of “building militias” beyond the control of Middle Eastern governments to both support them but also to use as leverage against them – not unlike what the US has done both through occupation forces deployed across the region and state sponsored terror groups armed, funded, trained, and directed by the US and its Persian Gulf allies everywhere from North Africa to the Middle Eastern nations of Iraq, Yemen, Syria, and Lebanon.

During his 2016, McMaster then moved on to address the self-proclaimed “Islamic State” (ISIS). He presents a slide of ISIS’ territorial holdings clearly depicting supply lines running directly out of NATO-member Turkey, leading deep into Syria and Iraq, with a lesser line emanating out of US-ally Jordan. He makes no mention of the source of ISIS’ fighting capacity, depicting the conflict in the similarly cartoonish manner US-European media presents it to the general public.

General McMaster presents to his audience a defense strategy based on “deterrence by denial, and deterrence at the frontier to ratchet up the cost [for] potential adversaries at the frontier,” referring to regions of the planet thousands of miles from US shores where the US seeks to either maintain or reassert it power and influence, or to project its power into regions hitherto independent of Wall Street and Washington’s influence.

Seamless Continuity of Agenda 

President Trump’s pick of General McMaster as National Security Adviser ensures that national security remains dominated by the corporate-financier funded think tanks that have devised, determined, and dominated US foreign policy for decades. Policy papers General McMaster repeatedly cites in every talk he gives, at one corporate-financier funded think tank after another, are the products of these very think tanks.

That General McMaster identifies Russia, China, and Iran as “threats” to the United States, not because they seek to harm the US within its territory or within any logical proximal sphere of influence, but simply for attempting to secure their own respective proximal spheres of influence from systematic and overt US subversion, influence, and encirclement, means a continuation of the destructive global spanning warfare seen under the administrations of numerous other presidents, including Presidents Obama, Bush, Clinton, Bush Sr. Reagan, and even Carter.

While the United States poses as a “democratic” nation, driven by the interests of its people, it is apparent that special interests on Wall Street and in Washington have a singular agenda that transcends both the presidents the people “elect,” and the policies they believe they elected these presidents to carry out. That President Trump’s supporters labor under the delusion that he will roll back US aggression and regime change worldwide, only to put in place General McMaster as his National Security Adviser – a man who openly and repeatedly supports the pursuit of American global hegemony – indicates that yet again the people have been deceived and that this singular agenda will move forward unabated.

Tony Cartalucci, Bangkok-based geopolitical researcher and writer, especially for the online magazine New Eastern Outlook”.

USA “democracy”. The people choose President & then the DeepState moves in to dictate policy. Same thing happened with Obama

The War Hawks Rolled Donald Trump

SEE ALSO Behind the Headlines: Illusion of democracy: Trump powerless against the Deep State?

President Trump’s first National Security Advisor Mike Flynn got kicked out of office for talking with Russian officials. Such talks were completely inline with Trump’s declared policies of détente with Russia. (I agree that Flynn should have never gotten the NSA job. But the reasons for that have nothing to do with his Russian connections.)

Allegedly Flynn did not fully inform Vice-President Pence about his talk with the Russian ambassador. But that can not be a serious reason. The talks were rather informal, they were not transcribed. The first call is said to have reached Flynn on vacation in the Dominican Republic. Why would a Vice-President need to know each and every word of it?

With Flynn out, the war-on-Russia hawks, that is about everyone of the “serious people” in Washington DC, had the second most important person out of the way that would probably hinder their plans.

They replaced him with a militaristic anti-Russian hawk:

In a 2016 speech to the Virginia Military Institute, McMaster stressed the need for the US to have “strategic vision” in its fight against “hostile revisionist powers” — such as Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran — that “annex territory, intimidate our allies, develop nuclear weapons, and use proxies under the cover of modernized conventional militaries.”

General McMaster, the new National Security Advisor, gets sold as a somewhat rebellious, scholar-warrior wunderkind. When the now disgraced former General Petraeus came into sight he was sold with the same marketing profile.

Petraeus was McMaster’s boss. McMaster is partially his creature:

He was passed over for brigadier general twice, until then-Gen. David Petraeus personally flew back to Washington, D.C., from Iraq to chair the Army’s promotion board in 2008.

When Petraeus took over in the war on Afghanistan he selected McMaster as his staff leader for strategy,

McMaster was peddled to the White House by Senator Tom Cotton, one of the most outlandish Republican neocon war hawks.

McMaster’s best known book is “Dereliction of Duty” about the way the U.S. involved itself into the Vietnam War. McMaster criticizes the Generals of that time for not having resisted then President Johnson’s policies.

He is the main author of an Army study on how to militarily counter Russia. McMaster is likely to “resist” when President Trump orders him to pursue better relations with Moscow.

Trump has now been boxed in by hawkish, anti-Russian military in his cabinet and by a hawkish Vice-President. The only ally he still may have in the White House is his consigliere Steve Bannon. The next onslaught of the “serious people” is against Bennon and especially against his role in the NSC. It will only recede when he is fired.

It seems to me that Trump has been rolled with the attacks on Flynn and the insertion of McMaster into his inner circle. I wonder if he, and Bannon, recognize the same problematic development and have a strategy against it.

 

Are Russian diplomats being assassinated? (UPDATED)

Are Russian diplomats being assassinated? (UPDATED)

February 21, 2017

Since the death of Vitaly Churkin I see more and more speculations that Russian diplomats are being killed (example here and here)  This is exceedingly unlikely and I consider these speculations to be based on ignorance and a form of “clickbaiting”.  Here is why:

  1. So four senior Russian diplomats have died in one month.  Considering how many diplomats Russia has worldwide, this hardly a tsunami.
  2. They died in Ankara (murder), Athens (natural causes), New Delhi (disease) and New York (heart attack).  There is no pattern, no modus operandi, no common link between these men and their deaths.
  3. During the Cold War the US and Soviets had an understanding that they would not attack each other’s personnel simply because any such attack would trigger an immediate retaliation which both sides wanted to avoid.  There is absolutely nothing suggesting that this has changed.
  4. Killing diplomats is useless.  They don’t really take decisions but their symbolic value is immense.  Thus the benefit for murdering them is zero and the cost potentially a nuclear war.
  5. Russia is not the Palestinian Authority which had to ask for a French expertise to establish the real cause of death of Yassir Arafat.  If anybody hard murdered Russian diplomats the Russians would inevitably find out who did it and why and the retaliation would be terrible (all, repeat, all the Takfiri Chechen leaders have by now been killed by the Russians, as have been the units who killed the Russian pilot in Syria as have been the key Takfiri leaders in Aleppo).

Coincidences do happen and not everything is the result of a conspiracy.  In this case, there is exactly zero evidence of a plot by anybody to murder Russian diplomats and spreading rumors about that is unhelpful and distracting from the important issues.

The Saker

UPDATE: okay, I am not coming across, so let me try something different: call two authorities to my rescue.  First, Carl Sagan who used to say that “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence“.  In this case, the claim is absolutely extraordinary: the murder of a senior diplomat is basically an act of war.  As for the evidence, at this time of writing it is exactly ZERO.  Nothing.  Ziltch.  Nihil.  My next expert authority is William of Occam who wrote “Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessitatem” which meaning can be roughly rendered as “the simplest explanation is the best”.  For example, while it is definitely *possible* that Russian diplomats have been murdered, it is far more likely that they simply died.  Of course, I cannot prove a negative.  But at this point in time I repeat that this line of speculation is based on absolutely nothing, that there is no evidence at all while the the claim is truly extraordinary.  To simple speculate on the basis of a statistically irrelevant sample and arrive far reaching hypotheses is simply not “analysis”.  At best, this is idle gossip.  Frankly, I am kind of shocked and even disappointed that so many seem to miss the total lack of evidentiary support, nevermind any “proof”, for this hypothesis.

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The success of #fakenews: Americans’ Hostility to Russia Soared After Obama’s 2012 Re-Election

Gallup: Americans’ Hostility to Russia Soared After Obama’s 2012 Re-Election

Gallup: Americans’ Hostility to Russia Soared After Obama’s 2012 Re-Election

Eric ZUESSE | 21.02.2017 | OPINION

Gallup: Americans’ Hostility to Russia Soared After Obama’s 2012 Re-Election

The Gallup organization samples Americans’ approval-disapproval of Russia in February of each year, and the approval-figure for this year is only slightly more than half as high as it had been back in 2012 when Obama publicly mocked his Presidential-campaign opponent Mitt Romney’s famous statement that «Russia, this is, without question, our number one geopolitical foe».

Gallup poll released on 20 February 2017 showed that Americans’ favorability rating of Russia, immediately after U.S. President Barack Obama left office, is only 28%, which is just above Americans’ 24% favorability toward The Palestinian Authority, and just below the 31% favorability toward Saudi Arabia. Russia hasn’t always been rated down in that low league of American popularity.

Back in 2012, before Obama’s second term, that favorability rating toward Russia was 50%. The year before that, in 2011, it was 51%. It had been reasonably stable until Obama’s re-election (except during 1998-2004 when it gyrated wildly because of Americans’ uncertainty of what the post-Soviet, post-communist, Russian government was like).

The lowest-ever American approval-rating for Russia occurred in Gallup’s poll on 8-11 February 2015, almost a year after the overthrow of Ukraine’s government and the vote of Crimeans to abandon Ukraine’s government and rejoin Russia, when it was 24%. In Gallup’s immediate-prior poll, which was taken right before the 20-26 February 2014 overthrow of the Ukrainian government, the Gallup poll on 6-9 February 2014, 34% of Americans approved of Russia.

No other nation has plunged even nearly as steeply in Americans’ favorability as did Russia, during Obama’s second term. The plunge, from 50% to 28%, which is a 44% plunge in the rating, compares with, as the second-steepest such plunge, Saudi Arabia: it’s a plunge from 42% in 2012, to 31% now, which is a 26% plunge — far less than the 44% plunge for Russia.

The biggest rise during Obama’s second term was for Cuba: 37% favorability-rating in 2012, 51 % today, which is a 38 % rise, during the four years of Obama’s second term.

Cuba’s remarkable rise during Obama’s second term cannot reasonably be attributed to Obama’s having restored, on 20 July 2015, diplomatic relations with Cuba, which had been severed in 1961. The rise instead occurred gradually throughout Obama’s second term. And, prior to 2012, going all the way back to 1998, Americans’ approval-rating of Cuba had been rather stable, within the 25 % to 30 % range. So: apparently throughout Obama’s second term, the U.S. press were providing increasingly favorable ‘news’ coverage of Cuba.

Russia’s chart-topping plunge occurred fairly steadily throughout Obama’s second term. It wasn’t caused entirely by the events in February and March 2014 in Ukraine: the overthrow of President Yanukovych and the plebiscite in which over 90 % of Crimeans (who had voted overwhelmingly for Yanukovych) voted to no longer to be in Ukraine but instead to return to being citizens of Russia, which Crimeans had been until 1954, when the Soviet dictator arbitrarily transferred Crimea from Russia to Ukraine (he was a Ukrainian: Nikita Khrushchev). Obama’s policy on that was to insist that the people of Crimea had no right of self-determination of peoples (which right he agreed with when it pertained to Catalonians in Spain and to Scots in UK but not to Crimeans in Ukraine) but that instead Russia’s acceptance of Crimeans back into Russia is ‘conquest of land’ by Russia, and so Obama imposed economic sanctions against Russia, and NATO poured U.S. and other troops and missiles onto Russia’s borders, allegedly so that there would be no more such ‘conquests’ by Russia (as if there were anything like a plebiscite in Romania or Latvia or Poland etc. in which a majority of the residents there sought for their land to become a part of Russia).

What is especially important to note regarding the plunge in Americans’ approval-rating for Russia is that it didn’t occur only after, but started well before, those events in Ukraine in 2014; it started at the very end of Obama’s first term, in 2012.

Obama’s State Department started planning the overthrow of Ukraine’s government by no later than 2011, when they were probing Julian Assange for information about how to stir revolutions by drawing supporters into online resistance activities. Assange did not know, at that time, what use the U.S. State Department (assisted by Google’s chief, Eric Schmidt) were aiming to make of the information that he provided. However, by the time the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine started on 1 March 2013 its «tech camps» to implement the ‘revolution’, it became clear what use Obama’s people were making of Assange’s insights.

Apparently, the ‘news’ coverage of Russia during the years of the plunge, 2012-2016, was somehow becoming progressively more and more unfavorable, in preparation for the 2014 Ukrainian coup and its aftermath of economic sanctions and the positioning of increasing numbers of U.S. troops and missiles on and near Russia’s borders. The U.S. government even publicly celebrated its propaganda-success.

Manipulating the public in a ‘democracy’ has become so much of a science, so that a person can reasonably doubt whether democracy, in even the limited extents to which it has existed in the past, possesses any realistic meaning in today’s world — or (if so) what meaning.

The basic theories of politics and understandings of ideology — everything that employs the concept «democracy» — are false now, even if they weren’t false earlier, when ‘democracies’ routinely included societies such as ancient Athens, where the majority of citizens owned one or more slaves.

Where lies reign, what meaning has ‘democracy’? Has it become merely one more lie? This is a serious question.

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