Exit Nord Stream 2, Enter Power of Siberia 2

THURSDAY 23 DEC 21

Military superpower Russia, having had enough of U.S./NATO bullying, is now dictating the terms of a new arrangement.

PEPE ESCOBAR 

Coming straight from President Putin, it did sound like a bolt from the sky:

“We need long-term legally binding guarantees even if we know they cannot be trusted, as the U.S. frequently withdraws from treaties that become uninteresting to them. But it’s something, not just verbal assurances.”

And that’s how Russia-U.S. relations come to the definitive crunch – after an interminable series of polite red alerts coming from Moscow.

Putin once again had to specify that Russia is looking for “indivisible, equitable security” – a principle established since Helsinki in 1975 – even though he no longer sees the U.S. as a dependable “partner”, that diplomatically nicety so debased by the Empire since the end of the USSR.

The “frequently withdrawing from treaties” passage can easily be referred to as Washington in 2002 under Bush Jr. pulling out of the ABM treaty signed between the U.S. and the USSR in 1972. Or it could be referred to as the U.S. under Trump destroying the JCPOA signed with Iran and guaranteed by the UN. Precedents abound.

Putin was once again exercising the Taoist patience so characteristic of Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov: explaining the obvious not only to a Russian but also a global audience. The Global South may easily understand this reference; “When international law and the UN Charter interfere, they [the U.S.] declare it all obsolete and unnecessary.”

Earlier, Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Grushko had been uncommonly assertive – leaving nothing for the imagination:

“We just make it clear that we are ready to talk about switching over from a military or a military-technical scenario to a political process that will strengthen the security of all countries in the area of the OCSE, Euro-Atlantic and Eurasia. If that doesn’t work out, we signaled to them [NATO] that we will also move over to creating counter threats, but it will then be too late to ask us why we made these decisions and why we deployed these systems.”

So in the end it comes down to Europeans facing “the prospect of turning the continent into a field of military confrontation.” That will be the inevitable consequence of a NATO “decision” actually decided in Washington.

Incidentally: any possible, future “counter threats” will be coordinated between Russia and China.

Mr. Zircon is on the line, Sir

Every sentient being from Atlanticist shores to Eurasian steppes by now knows the content of the Russian draft agreements on security guarantees presented to the Americans, as detailed by Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov.

Key provisions include no further NATO expansion; no Ukraine admission; no NATO shenanigans in Ukraine, Eastern Europe, Transcaucasia and Central Asia; Russia and NATO agreeing not to deploy intermediate and short-range missiles in areas from where they can hit each other’s territory; establishment of hotlines; and the NATO-Russia Council actively involved in resolving disputes.

Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs extensively reiterated that the Americans received “detailed explanations of the logic of the Russian approach”, so the ball is in Washington’s court.

Well, National Security advisor Jake Sullivan at first seemed to kick it, when he admitted, on the record, that Putin may not want to “invade” Ukraine.

Then there were rumblings that the Americans would get back to Moscow this week with their own “concrete security proposals”, after de facto writing the script for their NATO minions, invariably conveyed in spectacularly mediocre fashion by secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg.

The Ukraine narrative didn’t change an inch: “severe measures” – of an economic and financial nature – remain in the pipeline if Russia engages in “further aggression” in Ukraine.

Moscow was not fooled. Ryabkow had to specify, once again, that the Russian proposals were on a bilateral basis. Translation: we talk only to those with deciding power, not to minions. The involvement of other countries, Ryabkov said, “will deprive them of their meaning.”

From the start, NATO’s response had been predictably obvious: Russia is conducting a “substantial, unprovoked, and unjustified” military buildup along its border with Ukraine and is making “false … claims of Ukrainian and NATO provocations”.

That once again proved the point it’s a monumental waste of time to discuss with yapping chihuahuas of the Stoltenberg variety, for whom “NATO expansion will continue, whether Russia likes it or not.”

In fact, whether U.S. and NATO functionaries like it or not, what’s really happening in the realpolitk realm is Russia dictating new terms from a position of power. In a nutshell: you may learn the new game in town in a peaceful manner, civilized dialogue included, or you will learn the hard way via a dialogue with Mr. Iskandr, Mr. Kalibr, Mr. Khinzal and Mr. Zircon.

The inestimable Andrei Martyanov has extensively analysed for years now all the details of Russia’s overwhelming military dominance, hypersonic and otherwise, across the European space – as well as the dire consequences if the U.S. and NATO minions “decide that they want to continue to play dumb.”

Martyanov has also noted that Russia “understands the split with the West and is ready to take any consequences, including, already declining, shrinkage of trade and reduction of the supply of hydrocarbons to the EU.”

That’s where the whole ballet around the security guarantees intersects with the crucial Pipelineistan angle. To sum it all up: exit Nord Stream 2, enter Power of Siberia 2.

So let’s revisit why the looming energy catastrophe in the EU is not forcing anyone in Russia to lose his/her sleep.

Dancing in the Siberian night

One of the top takeaways of the strategic Putin-Xi video conference last week was the immediate future of Power of Siberia 2 – which will snake in across Mongolia to deliver up to 50 billion cubic meters of natural gas annually to China.

So it was hardly an accident that Putin received Mongolian President Ukhnaagiin Khurelsukh in the Kremlin, the day after he talked to Xi, to discuss Power of Siberia 2. The key parameters of the pipeline have already been set, a feasibility study will be completed in early 2022, and the deal – minus last-minute pricing tune-ups – is practically clinched.

Power of Siberia 2 follows the 2,200 km long Power of Siberia 1, launched in 2019 from Eastern Siberia to northern China and the focus of a $400 billion deal struck between Gazprom and China’s CNPC. Power of Siberia 1’s full capacity will be reached in 2025, when it will be supplying 38 billion cubic meters of gas annually.

Power of Siberia 2, a much bigger operation, was planned years ago, but it was hard to find consensus on the final route. Gazprom wanted Western Siberia to Xinjiang across the Altai mountains. The Chinese wanted transit via Mongolia straight into central China. The Chinese eventually prevailed. The final route across Mongolia was decided only two months ago. Construction should begin in 2024.

This is a massive geoeconomic game-changer, totally in line with the increasingly sophisticated Russia-China strategic partnership. But it’s also supremely important geopolitically (Remember Xi: China supports Russia’s “core interests”).

The gas for Power of Siberia 2 will come from the same fields currently supplying the EU market. Whatever demented concoctions the European Commission – and the new German government – may apply on stalling the operation of Nord Stream 2, Gazprom’s main focus will be China.

It doesn’t matter for Gazprom that China as a customer in the near future will not fully replace the whole EU market. What matters is the steady business flow and the absence of infantile politicking. For China what matters is an extra, guaranteed overland supply rote boosting its strategy of “escaping from Malacca”: the possibility, in case Cold War 2.0 turns hot, that the U.S. Navy would eventually block maritime shipping of energy sources via Southeast Asia to China.

Beijing of course is all over the place when it comes to buying Russian natural gas. The Chinese have a 30% stake in Novatek’s $27 billion Yamal project and a 20% stake in the $21 billion Arctic project.

So welcome to 2022 and the new, high stakes realpolitik Great Game.

U.S. elites had been terrified of playing Russia against China because they fear this would lead Germany to ally with Russia and China – leaving the Empire of Chaos out in the cold.

And that leads to the “mystery” inside the enigma of the whole Ukrainian face: use it to force the EU away from Russian natural resources.

Russia is turning the whole show upside down. As an energy superpower, instead of an internally corroded EU dictated by NATO, Russia will be mostly focused on its Asian customers.

In parallel, military superpower Russia, having had enough of U.S./NATO bullying, is now dictating the terms of a new arrangement. Lavrov confirmed the first round of Russia-U.S. talks on security guarantees will be held in early 2022.

Are these ultimatums? Not really. Seems like Ryabkov, with notable didacticism, will have to keep explaining it over and over again: “We do not speak in the language of ultimatums with anyone. We have a responsible attitude towards our own security and the security of others. The point is not that we have issued an ultimatum, not at all, but that the seriousness of our warning must not be underestimated.”

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فيينا نحو الاتفاق عاجلاً أو آجلاً

الجمعة 17 كانون أول 2021

 ناصر قنديل

تمر إدارة الرئيس الأميركي جو بايدن بأسوأ ظروف مرت على إدارة تسلمت البيض الأبيض، ففي الوقت الذي تعاني الخزانة الأميركية من أزمة ديون تتجاوز الخطوط الحمراء، وتضخم مالي تتآكل معه القدرة الشرائية للأميركيين أمام إرتفاعات الأسعار، يسود ركود اقتصادي تزيده كورونا تفاقماً، وتتعقد المنافسة التجارية مع الصين في غير صالح الاقتصاد الأميركي، بينما المواجهة التي فتحتها إدارة بايدن مع روسيا حول أوكرانيا، في ظرف تدرك الإدارة أنها لا تستطيع الذهاب إلى الخيار العسكري، وأن العقوبات التي تلوح بها لم تعد تجد نفعاً مع الرئيس الروسي، بل أن موسكو حولت هذا التحدي إلى فرصة، وفتحت الباب لطرح مطالبها المزمنة مقابل تعهداتها تجاه أوكرانيا، لجهة طلب تعهدات حلف الناتو بعدم ضم دول شرق أوروبا إلى صفوفه، بينما يخرج إلى العلن حلف صيني- روسي سياسي عسكري اقتصادي، أول مخرجاته قرار بكسر حصرية الدولار في التعامل التجاري، وفي ظل هذه الظروف الشديدة التعقيد تخوض واشنطن مفاوضات أشد تعقيداً مع إيران حول ملفها النووي، الذي انسحبت منه أميركا وتدفع الثمن السياسي والقانوني لانسحابها أمام إيران التي نجحت بإثبات إلتزامها لسنتين، وعندما خرجت عن بعض الإلتزامات نجحت بتوظيفها لتحسين وضعها النووي أضعافاً مضاعفة، بينما لم ينفع الانسحاب أميركا بشيء.

احتاجت واشنطن لوقت كي تستوعب أنها الطرف الأضعف في المفاوضات، كما احتاج شركاؤها الأوروبيون، فقد بدأ التفاوض وفي العقل الغربي أن مجرد التلويح لإيران بفرص العودة إلى الاتفاق سيكون كافياً لتتلقف إيران الأمر بالإستعداد لوقف اجراءاتها من خارج الاتفاق، ويدخل التفاوض إلى نوعية العقوبات التي يمكن رفعها، كما توهم الأميركيون والأوروبيون أن ما تم خلال فترة الانسحاب الأميركي من الاتفاق وما رافقه من عقوبات حقق الضغط اللازم على إيران، أي أنه أنضجها لقبول ما لم يكن مقبولاً عندها من قبل، ولذلك يمكن القول إن ما مر من وقت التفاوض كانت مهمته من وجهة نظر الوفد الإيراني إفهام الأميركيين والأوروبيين بوضوح أنهم أصحاب الحاجة الأصلية للعودة إلى الاتفاق، وأن إيران تأقلمت مع العقوبات، وأنهم لا يملكون بدائل للاتفاق بخلاف إيران التي تملك خيار المضي ببرنامجها النووي إلى لحظة الرعب النووية للغرب، وأنها بعدما تخلصت من العقوبات الأممية باتت طرفاً في حلف مع روسيا والصين يضمن لها عدم عودة هذه العقوبات، وأنها اقتصادياً تخطت الكثير من عقد العقوبات أمام المتاجرة قبل اتفاقها الاستراتيجي مع الصين فكيف بعده.

ما جرى في اليومين الأخيرين يقول إن واشنطن والعواصم الأوروبية بدأوا يلامسون الواقع بصورة أفضل من أوهام العظمة التي دخلوا التفاوض على أساسها، لكنهم لم يصلوا بعد إلى اللحظة التي تصنع الاتفاق، لكن إعتمادهم أسلوب تبادل الأوراق مع الوفد الإيراني المحترف والممسك جيداً بملفاته، سواء في ملف العقوبات بالتفاصيل أو الملف النووي بأشد التفاصيل دقة، يقول إن الإقرار بالحاجة للتعامل بجدية مع توازن القوى الموضوعي المحيط بالتفاوض بعقلية السعي لتسريع التفاوض وبلوغ النتيجة الايجابية، قد بدأ، لكن واشنطن تواجه مشكلتين خطيرتين، الأولى حالة حلفائها الاقليميين وخصوصاً السعودية و”إسرائيل”، وعجزهما عن التأقلم بسهولة مع إتفاق تقبل به إيران، وينظر إليها كرضوخ أميركي للشروط الإيرانية، والثانية كيفية تقديم الضمانات التي تطلبها إيران مقابل خطر الانسحاب الأميركي مجدداً من الاتفاق، ومصير أجهزة الطرد المركزي المتطورة التي تم تركيبها وكميات اليورانيوم التي تم تخصيبها، واصرار إيران على اعتبار الحفاظ عليها ضمانة موازية بديلة.

المفاوضات الدائرة في فيينا، بكل ما يرافقها ويحيط بها، سترسم حكماً مشهد الشرق الجديد، لكنها ستضع رؤوس الجسور لرؤية مشهد عالمي جديد، والوقت الذي تستهلكه المفاوضات ليس وقتاً ضائعاً، بل هو التعبير عن السياق اللازم لترسيم التوازنات التي ستنتج منها هذه التحولات.

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Putin and Xi plot their SWIFT escape

Russia and China’s announcement of an independent financial trading platform will free nations under US sanctions from western intrusion into their commercial activities.

December 17 2021

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping’s December video summit could mark the start of some major global financial shiftsPhoto Credit: The Cradle

By Pepe Escobar

Vladimir Putin got straight to the point. At the opening of his one hour and fourteen minute video conversation with Xi Jinping on 15 December, he described Russia-China relations as “an example of genuine inter-state cooperation in the 21st century.”

Their myriad levels of cooperation have been known for years now – from trade, oil and gas, finance, aerospace and the fight against Covid-19, to the progressive interconnection of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and the Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU).

But now the stage was set for the announcement of a serious counter-move in their carefully coordinated ballet opposing the relentless Hybrid War/Cold War 2.0 combo deployed by Empire.

As Assistant to the President for Foreign Policy Yuri Ushakov succinctly explained, Putin and Xi agreed to create an “independent financial structure for trade operations that could not be influenced by other countries.”

Diplomatic sources, off the record, confirmed the structure may be announced by a joint summit before the end of 2022.

This is a stunning game-changer in more ways than one. It had been extensively discussed in previous bilaterals and in preparations for BRICS summits – mostly centered on increasing the share of yuan and rubles in Russia-China settlements, bypassing the US dollar, and opening new stock market options for Russian and Chinese investors.

Now we’ve come to the crunch. And the catalyzing event was none other than US hawks floating the – financially nuclear – idea of expelling Russia from SWIFT, the messaging network used by 11,000+ banks in over 200 countries, as well as financial institutions, for rapid money transfers worldwide.

Cutting off Russia from SWIFT would be part of a harsh new sanctions package developed in response to an ‘invasion’ of Ukraine that will never happen – mainly because the only ones praying for it are professional NATO warmongers.

Profiting from a strategic blunder

Once again, an American strategic blunder offers the Russia-China self-described “comprehensive strategic partnership” the chance to advance their coordination.

Ushakov put it very diplomatically: it’s time to bypass a SWIFT mechanism “influenced by third countries” to form “an independent financial structure.”

That amounts to a serious game-changer for the entire Global South – as scores of nations yearn to be released from a de facto US dollar dictatorship, complete with recurring Fed quantitative easing circus packages.

Russia and China have been experimenting with their alternative payment systems for quite a while now: the Russian SPFS (System for Transfer of Financial Messages) and the Chinese CIPS (Cross Border Interbank Payment System).

It won’t be easy, as the most powerful Chinese banks are deep into SWIFT and have expressed their reservations about SPFS. Yet, they will have to inevitably integrate prior to the launch of the new mechanism, possibly in late 2022.

Once the most important Russian and Chinese banks – from Sberbank to the Bank of China – adopt the system, the path opens for other banks across Eurasia and the Global South to join in.

In the long run, SWIFT, prone to non-stop American political interference, will be increasingly marginalized, or restricted to Atlanticist latitudes.

Bypassing the US dollar, on trade and all sorts of financial settlements, is an absolutely central plank of the ever-evolving Russia-China notion of a multipolar world.

The road will be long, of course, especially when it comes to offering a solid counterpoint to the US-controlled global financial system, a maze that includes the humongous investment houses of the BlackRock, Vanguard and State Street variety, with their interlocking shareholding of virtually every major multinational company.

Yet a SWIFT escape will rapidly gain momentum, because it is inextricably linked to a series of developments that Putin-Xi touched upon in their conversation, the most important of which are:

1. The progressive interconnection of BRI and EAEU, offering expanding roles to the BRICS-run New Development Bank (NDB) as well as the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).

2. The increasing geopolitical and geo-economic reach of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), especially after the admission of Iran in October.

3. And crucially, the upcoming Chinese presidency of the BRICS in 2022.

China in 2022 will invest deeply in BRICS+. This expanded BRICS club will be linked to a development process that includes:

1. The consolidation of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) – a massive East Asia trade deal uniting China, the ASEAN 10 and Japan, and South Korea, as well as Australia and New Zealand.

2. The African Continental Free Trade Area (ACFTA).

3. And the memoranda of understanding signed between the EAEU and MERCOSUR and between the EAEU and ASEAN.

Anchoring West Asia  

Yaroslav Lissovolik, one of the world’s leading experts on BRICS+, argues that it’s now time for BRICS+ 2.0, operating in a system that opens “the possibility for bilateral and plurilateral agreements to complement the core network of regional alliances formed by BRICS countries and their respective regional neighbors.”

So if we’re talking about a major qualitative jump in terms of economic development across the Global South, the question is inevitable. What about West Asia?

All these interconnections, plus an escape from SWIFT, will certainly profit the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), arguably the flagship BRI project, to which Beijing plans to annex Afghanistan.

CPEC will be progressively connected to the future Iran-China corridor via Afghanistan, part of the 20 year Iran-China strategic deal in which BRI projects will be prominently featured. Iran and China already trade in yuan and rials, so settlements between Iran and China in a non-SWIFT mechanism will be a given.

What happened to Iran is a classic example of SWIFT becoming hostage of imperial political manipulation. Iranian banks were expelled from SWIFT in 2012, because of pressure from the usual suspects. In 2016, access was restored as part of the JCPOA, clinched in 2015. Yet in 2018, under the Trump administration, Iran was once again cut off from SWIFT.

None of that will ever happen with Iran joining the new Russia-China mechanism.

And that leads us to the interconnection of China’s BRI expansion in Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen. The reconstruction of Syria may be largely financed via the non-SWIFT mechanism. Same for China buying Iraqi energy. Same for the reconstruction of a Yemen possibly hosting a Chinese-owned port, part of the “string of pearls.”

Saudi Arabia, the Emirates and Israel may remain in the US financial sphere of influence, or lack thereof. And even if there is no BRICS nation anchoring West Asia, and no regional integration economic agreement on the horizon, the role of the economic integrator is bound to be eventually played by China.

China will play a similar role to Brazil anchoring MERCOSUR, Russia anchoring the EAEU and South Africa anchoring the SADC/SACU.

Both BRI and the EAEU will get a tremendous boost by bypassing SWIFT. You simply can’t go multipolar if you trade using (devalued) imperial legal tender.

BRI, EAEU and those interlocking economic development agreements, combined with digital technology, will be integrating billions of people in the Global South.

Think of a possible, auspicious future spelling out cheap telecom delivering financial services and world market access, in a non-dollar environment, to all those who have been so far cut off from a truly globalized economy.

The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of The Cradle.

Russia and China are “more than allies”

December 15, 2021

Readouts Virtual Meeting: President Vladimir Putin and President Xi Jinping

December 15, 2021

Both readouts follow.  First, President Putin and followed by President Xi Jinping.


Talks with President of China Xi Jinping

Vladimir Putin held talks, via videoconference, with President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping.

December 15, 2021, 11:20

Beginning of Russia-China talks

President of Russia Vladimir Putin:

President Xi, my dear friend,

I am delighted to see you. Greetings.

I am happy to have this opportunity to see you via videoconference. This allows us to hold in-depth discussions on the development of Russian-Chinese relations of comprehensive partnership and strategic interaction. I regard these relations as a shining example of interstate cooperation in the 21st century.

We have maintained contact despite the sanitary and epidemiological restrictions, and in May [2021] we launched, via videoconference, the joint construction of four new power units for a nuclear power plant in China. In June, we held a videoconference on the 20th anniversary of the major Russia-China Treaty [on Good-Neighbourliness and Friendly Cooperation]. We also had telephone conversations about urgent international issues, in particular, the Afghan problem.

This year Russia-China relations have been dominated by the 20th anniversary of the Treaty on Good-Neighbourliness and Friendly Cooperation. It has been extended for another five years. The consistent implementation of this fundamental document, which comprehensively reflects the deep historical traditions of friendship and mutual understanding between the Russian and Chinese people, has helped us to take our relations to an unprecedentedly high level.

A new model of cooperation has developed between our countries, a model based, in part, on the principles of non-interference in each other’s affairs and mutual resolve to turn our common border into a belt of eternal peace and good-neighbourliness.

We are strengthening our trade and economic ties: from January to November this year, our mutual trade has increased by 31 percent to US$123 billion. We have beaten the record of the pre-pandemic year, 2019. In the near term, as agreed, we will pass the US$200 billion mark. We are implementing a number of large-scale joint projects in energy, including nuclear generation, industry and high technology.

From the very beginning of the pandemic, we have firmly joined forces in responding to the coronavirus infection. China has become an international centre for the production of the Russian vaccines Sputnik V and Sputnik Light. Contracts for more than 150 million doses have been signed with six Chinese manufacturers.

The multifaceted dialogue mechanism between the two countries’ governments and relevant agencies is working smoothly, and parliamentary cooperation is strengthening. The foreign policy and defence departments maintain ongoing contact.

Russia and China’s close coordination in the world arena, and their responsible joint approach to current global problems have become a significant factor of stability in international relations. We are active on platforms such as the UN Security Council, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, and the BRICS. We are both contributing to the formation of a just world order based on international law.

President Xi Jinping, my friend,

I do hope that next February, we will finally be able to meet in person in Beijing. As we agreed, you and I will talk, and then we will participate in the Winter Olympics opening ceremony. Thank you for the invitation to attend this important event.

I would like to note that we invariably support each other in every aspect of international sports cooperation, including in condemning any attempts to politicise sports and the Olympic movement. I have no doubt that the upcoming Winter Games will be held at the highest level. They know how to do things in China.

By the way, to follow up on this high-profile sporting event, we plan to announce that 2022 and 2023 will be the Russian and Chinese years of cooperation in physical education and sports.

In a word, given the grand scale of interaction between our countries, we have a wide range of important matters to discuss today.

And of course, I would like to take this opportunity to wish you and all our Chinese friends a Happy New Year, wish you happiness, good health and all the very best.

Thank you.


President Xi Jinping Had a Virtual Meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin2021-12-15 22:23

On the afternoon of 15 December, President Xi Jinping had a virtual meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Beijing.

President Xi expressed his pleasure in meeting President Putin virtually at the year-end, their second virtual meeting in 2021 and their 37th meeting since 2013. President Xi noted that on multiple occasions President Putin has hailed Russia-China relations as a model of coordination between countries in the 21st century, firmly supported China in upholding core interests, and rejected attempts to sow discord between Russia and China. President Xi expressed his deep appreciation and readiness to work with President Putin to review the new progress made in bilateral relations this year, draw up new plans for cooperation across the board, and promote the sustained and high-quality development of bilateral ties.

President Xi stressed that the combined forces of changes in the world and the COVID-19 pandemic, both unseen in a century, have taken the world into a phase of fluidity and transformation. China-Russia relations have emerged from all kinds of tests to demonstrate new vitality. President Xi noted his regular communication and coordination in various forms with President Putin on major agenda items, through which they have jointly charted the course for China-Russia relations. The two sides have officially announced the renewal of the Treaty of Good-neighborliness and Friendly Cooperation and made it more relevant in the new era. They have extended firm mutual support on issues concerning each other’s core interests, thus defending the national dignity and common interests of both countries.

President Xi pointed out the enormous political advantage and great opportunities in the all-round practical cooperation between China and Russia. Bilateral trade in the first three quarters of 2021 exceeded US$100 billion for the first time, and the year-round volume is expected to hit a new record. The China-Russia Year of Scientific and Technological Innovation has been a big success. A number of major projects with strategic importance have been successfully implemented. Smooth progress is being made in synergizing Belt and Road cooperation with the Eurasian Economic Union. The two countries have actively fulfilled their responsibilities as major countries, promoted a united, global responseto COVID-19, communicated the true meaning of democracy and human rights, and acted as the bulwark of following true multilateralism and upholding fairness and justice in the world.

President Xi noted that next year, the Communist Party of China (CPC) will host its 20th National Congress while Russia will enter an important stage in implementing its national development goals by 2030. The two sides need to share opportunities in the process of opening-up, keep advancing the global development agenda, and play their roles in fostering a new type of international relations and building a community with a shared future for mankind.

President Xi underscored President Putin’s visit to China and attendance at the opening ceremony of the Beijing Winter Olympics in over a month’s time as a concrete action to support China’s work as the host. Beijing will become the first city in the world to host both Summer and Winter Olympics. Preparations are in full swing to present a streamlined, safe and splendid Games, and work on all fronts is mostly ready. The two Presidents will have exchanged visits to Olympic Games held in each other’s countries, and the two countries will hold the Year of Sports Exchange in the next two years. President Xi stressed the need to take these opportunities to turn sports exchange into a bridge and bond for greater mutual understanding and friendship between the two peoples. President Xi expressed his hope that during President Putin’s upcoming visit to China,the first in-person meeting between the two leaders in two years, they will have in-depth discussions on bilateral relations and major international and regional issues, and reach more new, important common understandings. He said that he very much looks forward to this“get-together for the Winter Olympics” and stands ready to work with President Putin “for a shared future” to jointly open a new chapter inpost-COVID China-Russia relations.

President Xi pointed out that at the sixth Plenary Session of the 19th Central Committee of the CPC held not long ago, the CPC Central Committee adopted and released a new historic resolution to conduct a comprehensive review of the major achievements and historical experience of the Party over the past century. “As I often say, our goal is both big and simple. It is essentially about delivering a better life to all Chinese. Putting people first is our fundamental philosophy of governance,” said President Xi.Both China and Russia are major countries with global influence and both have found development paths that suit their national conditions. President Xi reaffirmed China’s commitment to firmly support Russia in maintaining long-term stability, and expressed his readiness to have regular, candid and in-depth exchanges on governance experience with President Putin so as to jointly provide guidance to the sustained and high-level development of China-Russia relations and lead the two countries toward national rejuvenation.

President Xi pointed out that certain forces in the world are trying to meddle in the internal affairs of China and Russia under the pretext of “democracy” and “human rights” and grossly trample on international law and universally recognized norms governing international relations. China and Russia need to launch more joint actions to uphold the security interests of the two sides more effectively. China and Russia need to step up coordination and collaboration in international affairs, be more vocal on global governance, come up with feasible solutions to the pandemic, climate change and other global issues, and firmly uphold international fairness and justice in the process of resolving international and regional hotspots. Efforts must be made to firmly reject hegemonic acts and the Cold War mentality under the disguise of “multilateralism” and “rules”.

President Xi pointed out that since last year, China and Russia have actively conducted cooperation against COVID-19. Such efforts provide good examples of solidarity and mutual assistance in this bilateral relationship. They also contribute significantly to promoting a united, global response to the pandemic and to building a global community of health for all. The two sides need to be more resourceful and work together to introduce more concrete measures aimed at unclogging “bottlenecks” while strictly preventing cross-border transmission. China is ready for closer cooperation with Russia on COVID-19 testing and on research and development of vaccines and drugs.

President Xi pointed out the need for the two sides to share in opportunities of development under the new circumstances and make the pie of cooperation bigger. It is important to seize opportunities of the new round of scientific and technological revolution and industrial transformation, and accelerate cooperation in frontier technologies. China and Russia have a strong foundation and great complementarity in energy cooperation. The two sides need to build on their traditional energy cooperation, pursue more cooperation in new energy, advance the cooperation package in nuclear energy, and explore new cooperation areas such as renewable energy.

President Xi talked about the Global Development Initiative he proposed at the 76th Session of the UN General Assembly in September. This is another global public good that China offers in response to market challenges facing all parties, especially emerging markets and developing countries, and in an effort to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. China will work closely with Russia to play a role in improving global governance and promoting global development.

On regional cooperation, President Xi said that over the past 20 years since the establishment of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), China and Russia have maintained a high level of strategic coordination and worked with other SCO member states to firmly follow the Shanghai spirit, to keep enhancing solidarity and mutual trust, and to deepen cooperation in all fields. The two sides need to support SCO member states in steadily advancing important domestic political agenda, and reject interference in the domestic affairs of regional countries by external forces under whatever pretexts.The two sides need to keep the development of the SCO on the right course, and follow the path of solidarity and cooperation, common security, openness and integration, mutual learning, and fairness and justice. China will continue to carry out flexible and diverse cooperation with Russia and other member states of the Collective Security Treaty Organization to safeguard security and stability in the region.

On BRICS cooperation, President Xi pointed out that next year, China will take overthe BRICS presidencyand host the 14th BRICS Summit and other events. China will maintain a high level of strategic coordination with Russia, and encourage BRICS countries to deepen cooperation across the board. It is important to act on true multilateralism, support the multilateral trading system, and build an open world economy. It is important to focus on practical cooperation, deepen cooperation in public health, and expand the “BRICS Plus”model to benefit more through BRICS cooperation. President Xi shared his confidence that with the concerted efforts of China and Russia, next year’s BRICS cooperation will surely yield positive results.

On cooperation at the UN Security Council, President Xi pointed out that under current circumstances, it is necessary for the five permanent members of the Security Council to strengthen coordination on deepening cooperation against the coronavirus, upholding international peace and security and promoting economic recovery, and actively respond to the common expectation of the international community. China will stay in close communication with Russia.

The two sides exchanged views on major-country relations and on democracy. President Xi stressed that democracy is a lofty aspiration and common value of all humanity and also a right enjoyed by people of all countries. Whether a country is democratic or not and how to better realize democracy can only be left to its own people to decide. International affairs should be managed by all countries through consultation. Promoting greater democracy in international relations and upholding true multilateralism is the expectation of the people and the prevailing trend of the times. China will enhance communication and coordination with Russia to encourage the international community to take the right view on democracy and defend the legitimate democratic rights of all countries.

President Putin said that the Russia-China relationship is at its best in history with a high degree of strategic mutual trust. It has set an example for delivering mutual benefit on the basis of non-interference in each other’s internal affairs and mutual respect for each other’s interests. It can be hailed as a model of state-to-state relations in the 21st century. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Good-neighborliness and Friendly Cooperation, and the two sides have officially announced the renewal of the Treaty. Overcoming the impact of COVID-19, the two sides have maintained close interactions, made steady progress in practical cooperation in all areas including trade, energy and science and technology, and conducted communication and coordination on international and regional issues. The strategic coordination between Russia and China has served as a major positive factor in effectively resolving all sorts of international hotspots and in safeguarding world peace, playing an important role in maintaining the international order underpinned by international law. President Putin said he looks forward to visiting China soon and attending the opening ceremony of the Beijing Winter Olympics, and reaffirmed Russia’s consistent opposition to attempts at politicizing sports. He expressed his hope of having an in-depth exchange of views with President Xi on major issues of mutual interest to promote the sustained and high-level development of Russia-China relations. Russia will continue to strengthen cooperation with China in such fields as economy and trade, oil and gas, finance, and aerospace and aviation and in major projects of strategic importance, and will promote greater synergy between the Eurasian Economic Union and the Belt and Road Initiative. Russia will work more closely with China to fight COVID-19 and oppose the politicization of the pandemic; and will further strengthen cultural and people-to-people exchanges with China and ensure the success of the Year of Sports Exchange in the next two years.Russia will be the most staunch supporter ofthe Chinese government’s legitimate position onTaiwan-related issues. It will firmly opposemoves by any force to undermine China’s interests using Taiwan-related issues, andmoves to form any type of “small groups” in the Asia-Pacific region. No attempt to sow discord between Russia and China will ever succeed. Russia will work with China to continue deepening close coordination in the SCO, the UN Security Council and other multilateral arena, and will support China’s BRICS presidency next year. Russia firmly rejects attempts to meddle in the internal affairs of Russia and China or to contain the legitimate development interests of the two countries. It is committed to upholding international fairness and justice and to maintaining strategic security and stability in the world. Russia is ready for more communication with China on defending true democratic rights and interests of all countries.

The two sides also exchanged views on other international and regional issues of mutual interest.

The two Presidents agreed to meet in Beijing in February next year.

Ding Xuexiang, Wang Yi and He Lifeng were present at the meeting.

Putin Is Right, The West’s Anti-Chinese Policy Is Indeed Repulsive

14 DECEMBER 2021

By Andrew Korybko

Source

Whether it’s the West’s trade and tech wars that they provoked against the People’s Republic, their fake news-driven information warfare campaigns against that country, or the AUKUS military alliance which aims to aggressively contain it through nuclear-related means, every aspect of their policy towards Beijing is indeed repulsive.

Russian President Vladimir Putin slammed the West’s anti-Chinese policy as “repulsive” while recently speaking at the “Russia Calling!” annual investment forum. He criticized the sanctions and restrictions against China as “completely unjustified” and said that “they contradict international law.” The Russian leader also condemned the Australia-UK-US (AUKUS) military alliance, which he said “does not help improve the situation in the region, it escalates tensions.” He’s right about everything that he said.

What’s so repulsive about all of this isn’t just that it’s illegal, but that it’s so hypocritical and dangerous. The West preaches a policy of so-called “democracy” and “human rights”, yet there’s nothing “democratic” or “humane” about a gang of countries such as the AUKUS states teaming up against anyone else like China. It’s anti-democratic and inhumane, especially since the sanctions are meant to hurt the Chinese people. These policies are the opposite of what the West says that it stands for.

They’re also dangerous too because they unnecessarily raise the risk of war. Two of AUKUS’ three countries are nuclear powers and are plotting to controversially proliferate nuclear submarine technology to the Asia-Pacific member of their alliance. All three have provoked differing levels of tension with China in recent years so it’s clear that this nuclear pact is aimed against the People’s Republic. The AUKUS states arrogantly assume that China will sit back and not defend itself.

Every defensive move that China takes, both in the past and in the future, is misportrayed as a so-called “unprovoked act of aggression”. This is also extremely repulsive. President Putin defended China’s military policy during his talk when he remarked that “it has the right to build its defense policy in a way to ensure the security of that huge country. Who can deny it [China] this right? It is natural that the military might grows along with the rise in the economic potential. This is a natural process.”

Taking this insight into consideration, it becomes clear that the West’s repulsive anti-Chinese policy is also unnatural. Nevertheless, delusional Western officials perversely claim that it’s actually “natural” because they say that there’s no alternative to their countries trying to keep China in check. That’s the wrong way to look at the world since mutually beneficial cooperation is the way of the future, not the zero-sum thinking that’s responsible for two World Wars and countless comparatively smaller ones.

President Putin elaborated on the reason why he isn’t concerned by China’s growing military capabilities. In his words, “why do we have to show any concern over the growing defense potential of our nearest neighbor, with which we enjoy an unprecedentedly high level of inter-state relations?” Put another way, if countries focus on cooperating in areas of shared interest like China and Russia do instead of provoking conflict like the West does, then there’s no reason to fear one another.

This is a pragmatic and natural way to conduct international relations. If the West only followed China’s and Russia’s lead by respecting other countries’ rights to govern themselves in accordance with their people’s wishes, defend themselves, and develop with whatever model they believe is best, then the world would be so much more peaceful. Instead, the West continues to cling to its reprehensible, hypocritical, and dangerous policies against China, which are endangering world peace.

President Putin advised in a different part of his speech that “We need to build such a model of international relations where all members of the international community could feel equal and where common rules are adopted. Not to live by somebody else’s rule established by no one knows who and how, but to live by common rules, agreed and adopted by the world community. It means to live by stable rule.”

The core of the problem is that the West doesn’t abide by the rules-based order legitimized by the same United Nations Charter that its governments formally agreed to respect by participating in that global body. This is the real root of its repulsive policies against China and all other peace-loving countries that respect international law. These double standards contradict the “democratic” and “human rights” rhetoric spewed by their governments. All the trouble that they cause can be traced back to this.

Whether it’s the West’s trade and tech wars that they provoked against the People’s Republic, their fake news-driven information warfare campaigns against that country, or the AUKUS military alliance which aims to aggressively contain it through nuclear-related means, every aspect of their policy towards Beijing is indeed repulsive. Raising awareness of this objective observation like President Putin did will hopefully get the West to wake up and realize how counterproductive this all is before it’s too late.

To see Putin and die

November 29, 2021

by Rostislav Ischenko for Ukraina.ru
source: 
Note: this machine translated text

Joseph Biden, the 46th president of the United States, has asked Russian President Vladimir Putin for a meeting for the second time in six months. This would not be surprising: in the end, international tensions have reached a limit, and not only the most alarmist of experts, but also the most cautious of politicians have already started talking about the high probability of war

In such circumstances, responsible leaders of great powers are simply obliged to meet and seek compromises.

But this is the same Biden, whose team cried all the tears over Russian interference in the American elections and twice tried to organize the impeachment of the 45th US President Donald Trump, accusing the latter of surrendering American interests to Russia and working for Putin. Meanwhile, Putin and Trump had only one full-format meeting (in Helsinki, July 16, 2018, a year and a half before the expiration of Trump’s powers), and the rest — about five short conversations “on the sidelines” of various summits.

Relations between Russia and the United States had sunk to the freezing point even before Trump. At the same time, the 45th American president, although he negotiated more harshly, was still much more constructive than the 46th. Trump was inclined to seek a compromise, despite all the contradictions, because only a mutually acceptable compromise can ensure a long and lasting peace.

Biden, in a typical American manner, is trying to deceive a partner in the negotiation process, seeking only a truce – a postponement of confrontation for some time, during which the United States will try to solve its problems in order to take up the old with renewed vigor later.

That is why Biden’s team is begging for meetings with Putin, as if their ancient boss is afraid to die without telling Vladimir Vladimirovich something important. Pay attention to the diplomatic activity of the American president who does not always adequately perceive reality during the first year of his term:

* spring – activation of the US-European Union, an attempt to force the EU to go to a sharp deterioration in relations with Russia and abandon the SP-2;
* summer – a sudden request for a meeting with Putin, insistence on its early organization, declared readiness to resolve the entire spectrum of controversial issues. In fact, absolutely empty and unacceptable hints for Russia about the readiness of the United States not to interfere if the Kremlin decides to restore its exclusive sphere of influence in the post-Soviet space by force, so that, as a reciprocal courtesy, Russia refuses an informal (but very problematic for the United States) alliance with China. The rest of the summer is devoted to spreading disinformation that Moscow is ready to negotiate with the United States at the expense of Beijing;
* autumn — the formation of an anti-Chinese alliance of US vassals in the Asia-Pacific region and part of the European powers, followed by a sharp and persistent desire to organize a personal meeting between Xi Jinping and Biden (the meeting took place, was in vain, after which the United States began spreading disinformation that Beijing is ready to negotiate with Washington at the expense of Moscow);
* winter — against the background of the sharp aggravation of the situation on the borders of Russia and Belarus that began in the autumn and an undisguised attempt to draw Russia into a war with the participation of Eastern European members of NATO and the EU, a new insistence on a personal meeting with Putin.

In my opinion, there is no need to have an outstanding intellect to see the “swing” on which the United States is trying to “rock” Russia and China in order to break their partnership (absolutely nullifying all attempts by the United States to regain the status of a global hegemon) and suppress Moscow and Beijing one by one and one by one. The United States offers everyone something unnecessary, but seriously binding their hands and requiring large resource costs, they try to link everyone with a regional war with their allies (who, however, are not in a hurry to drag chestnuts out of the fire for Washington), they inspire everyone that the partner has almost agreed to the American proposal and we must hurry to negotiate ourselves so as not to be made fools of.

The method is simple, has been used since ancient times and quite often led to success. The United States understands that neither Russia nor China want to win right now and annex the post-Soviet territories in Europe and Taiwan (respectively).

Moscow and Beijing would prefer to solve these problems peacefully and later. At this stage, the too clearly expressed intention to return the fallen imperial territories may not only limit the possibilities of cooperation between Russia and China to resist the military-political and financial-economic pressure of the United States, but also undermine the entire system of Eurasian unions built by them.

Therefore, the United States, in order to persuade Russia and China to make concessions in the negotiations, frighten both of them with an unnecessary regional war, while at the same time offering to negotiate and solve this problem. If someone gives up and starts at least discussing options, Washington will immediately provide a proof leak of information in order to persuade the second partner to make a concession, and then bargain with both from a favorable position to bring down the price.

Realizing all this, the Russian leadership is in no hurry to talk with Biden. Peskov, on behalf of the Kremlin, said that the exact date has not yet been determined. However, the Kremlin has agreed in principle to organize a videoconference before the end of the year. Why did they do that?

Every month (not to mention a year) without war, Russia and China strengthen and weaken the United States. If we hold out for two or three years, the war will become meaningless for the United States, because, by their own admission, after 2024 they do not see the possibility of defeating China militarily. Consequently, in two years, the opportunities for American blackmail will decrease sharply, and America’s allies, who are already unwilling to risk themselves because of the Washington games, will become even more thoughtful, it will be even more difficult to persuade them to demonstrative aggressive actions against Moscow and Beijing. A certain US deadline is approaching, we need to act already. Under these conditions, Washington, having lost hope of achieving its goal by peace, can really bet on provocation of war.

Any negotiations are a way to delay time. While they are preparing and while they are going, it is unprofitable for the United States to be unconstructive, which means they will try to keep their allies on a short leash. But vassal states are not trained dogs that can be set on an object or calmed down in one second, rocking the situation takes time (albeit a little). The solution suggests itself: as long as possible to delay the time in determining the date of negotiations, postponing them for later. As soon as it becomes impossible to pull further – to hold negotiations and try, without giving a single opportunity to interpret their outcome as a willingness to take seriously American proposals for the surrender of an ally, to involve the United States in the preparation of the next meeting by creating permanent expert groups in the areas.

Any diplomatic department is a complex bureaucratic machine that is extremely difficult to force to move simultaneously in two directions. If you give the task to begin diplomatic preparations for war, this apparatus will move in one direction, if you set the task of finding a compromise, then in another. At the same time, it will have a serious informational impact on both the international and domestic agenda. That is, even meaningless, but regular meetings of experts reduce (though not completely remove) the risk of fatal confrontation.

Russia’s actions indicate that the Kremlin clearly sees the threat and has chosen the right tactics. The agreement on the creation of expert groups was reached during the first meeting with Biden, with the organization of which they stretched out as much as they could. However, America countered this agreement by saying that the expert groups did not work. So, now Russian diplomats will point this out and demand more constructive.

The current meeting is also being delayed as much as they can, having already postponed it until the end of December. If it works out, then under the pretext of New Year’s holidays they will postpone it until the middle-end of January (however, this is unlikely, the United States is in a hurry). The current meeting will be held online: the coronavirus. Although he does not interfere with Putin and Biden’s meetings with other politicians, but in this case only online. And not because I don’t want to waste time on flights, knowing in advance that the negotiations will be in vain. The online mode does not allow the organization of fake leaks about the content of negotiations. This is not a face-to-face conversation (in the presence of only unknown and controlled translators, in an office protected from wiretapping) – everything is recorded, and by both sides.

Thus, Russia is trying to win one and a half to two months out of the 48 required. Will it be possible to win the world completely?

This question has no definite answer. On the one hand, time is running out, and with the approach of 2024, the United States has nothing to lose, and in the vassal countries designated by them for slaughter, there are their own war parties that (for personal gain) are ready to start even a losing war that destroys their states. On the other hand, the current authorities, who are now in charge of American consumables, are doing everything possible to get rid of the honorable mission of pointlessly dying for the interests of the United States. How strong will they have enough strength to continue maneuvering on the verge of a foul? How ready are Americans to increase pressure on the dependent elites of limitrophs? Where is the weak link ready to break: in Europe or in Asia and who is it (Ukraine, Taiwan, someone else)? We can only assume with more or less certainty.

Often the expected danger comes at all from where it is not expected or when they stopped waiting and relaxed.

The Tripartite World Order and the Hybrid World War

NOVEMBER 14, 2021

The Tripartite World Order and the Hybrid World War

by Dmitry Orlov, posted by permission of the author

General Mark Milley, America’s highest-ranking military officer, has recently gone public with a revelation of his: the world is no longer unilateral (with the US as the unquestioned world hegemon) or bilateral (as it was with the US and the SU symmetrically balancing each other out in an intimate tango of mutual assured destruction). It is now tripartite, with three major powers—the US, Russia and China—entering a “tripolar war.” That is the exact term he is reported to have used at the Aspen Security Forum on November 3, 2021.

This seems strange, since neither Russia nor China is eager to attack the US while the US is in no condition to attack either of them. The US has just got defeated in a two-decade conflict against a fourth-rate adversary (Afghanistan, that is) in the most humiliating way possible, abandoning $80 billion of war materiel and forsaking thousands of its faithful servants in a hasty withdrawal that amounted to a rout. It is about to suffer a similar fate in Syria and Iraq. Its navy just got humiliated in a minor skirmish with the Iranians over an oil tanker. Clearly, the US is in no shape to attack anyone.

So what could Milley possibly mean? He may not sound smart, but he is the most powerful man at the Pentagon. Of course, Milley-Vanilley could just be lip-sinking to some stupid music coming out of the White House (which is currently stocked with some choice imbeciles). This would make sense, since throughout his career Milley carefully avoided anything that smacked of actual military action and therefore carried within it the possibility of defeat, instead choosing to concentrate on such things as producing a report on the impact of climate change on the U.S. military.

Here is Milley captured during one of his prouder moments, standing next to Russia’s General Valery Gerasimov, who saw combat—and victory—as commander during the Second Chechen War. Gerasimov then authored Russia’s hybrid war doctrine (the Gerasimov Doctrine), which allows strategic and political objectives to be achieved through nonmilitary means but with military support and military-style secrecy, discipline, coordination and control. In comparison, our General Milley is something of a cardboard cutout general, with a string that makes his lower jaw move up and down leading to some place within the Washington swamp of political think tanks and defense industry lobbyists.

The Gerasimov Doctrine bears an uncanny resemblance to the Chinese doctrine of unlimited war, indicating that Russia and China have harmonized in their defensive strategies. These doctrines are designed to amplify China’s and Russia’s natural advantages while placing the US at a maximum disadvantage. It is not immediately clear whether Milley is capable of understanding such matters; quite the opposite, it is likely that his job security and career path critically depended on his inability to understand anything above his pay grade. Nevertheless, since he happens to be the mouthpiece for the whole ungodly mess, we need to at least try to take his words at face value and try to think of what his “tripolar war” could possibly mean.

The Russian hybrid war doctrine and the Chinese unlimited war doctrine both give an advantage to countries with strict, centralized control structures (China and Russia, that is) while severely disadvantaging the US, which has a diffuse and internally conflicted power elite split up between two parties and among lots of competing government agencies and private entities with lots of opportunities for both internal and external espionage, infiltration and media leaks.

Russia’s advantages are in advanced weapons against which the US has no countermeasures, such as hypersonic missiles and radio warfare systems, and in a huge and only partially explored resource base, of energy resources especially. China’s advantage is in a huge and highly disciplined workforce that produces a vast array of products which the US must continuously import to prevent its entire economy from shutting down because of supply chain disruptions. On the other hand, both China and Russia find themselves at a disadvantage in facing the large and well-oiled machine the US has developed for its habitual meddling in the affairs of other nations and the undermining of their natural sovereignty. An array of mechanisms, from cultural exports to ad campaigns associated with popular brands to social media initiatives designed to corrupt the minds of the young, exists in order to exert US influence on other nations.

The Chinese and the Russian responses to this threat are almost diametrically different: whereas China builds firewalls and uses strict social controls to contain the threat, Russia’s strategy is to allow the foreign infection to run wild and to let their nation’s innate immune system create antibodies against it and neutralize it. Russia draws its red lines at outright bought-and-paid-for enemy propaganda, inciting armed rebellion, advocacy of terrorism, propaganda of sexual perversion among children, etc. In this way, Russia can not just compensate for this disadvantage but turn it to its own advantage: while the West is becoming increasingly undemocratic and authoritarian with its endless political correctness, social biodiversity requirements and the pursuit of better living through non-reproductive mating, hormone therapy and genital mutilation, Russia remains a free land with a wholesomely conservative social outlook that is quite attractive to people all over the world and is becoming increasingly attractive to many people in the West as they become painfully aware of the wages of sin.

Why concentrate on hybrid/unlimited war instead of an outright nuclear or conventional military conflict between the US and China and/or Russia? That is because both conventional and nuclear military conflict between any of these three nations is an insane, suicidal choice, while those in charge of defining military strategy are specifically not selected for their suicidal tendencies. Neither Russia nor China is known for their wars of aggression, and while the US is extremely well known for its homicidal, violent tendencies (having carried out 32 bombing campaigns on 24 countries since World War II), it is fundamentally a bully, only picking on weak countries that pose no threat. Based on publicly available information, both Russia and China are now quite far ahead of the US in weapons development, to a point where any possible direct US attack on either of them would be self-disarming at best and suicidal at worst.

In the best case scenario, the US launches an attack which is successfully repelled: bombers and rockets shot down, ships sunk, US military bases and port facilities destroyed, possibly US command and control centers also destroyed, as quite pointedly promised by Putin. The US then lays prostrate and at the mercy of its opponents. If its cooperation still leaves something to be desired, some combination of deplorables, despicables, imponderables and indecipherables will be organized just enough to make a bloody mess of what’s left of US government structures and power elites, which will then be replaced with an international peacekeeping force (as an optimistic case) or just left to persist in durable disorder, misery and international isolation.

The worst case scenario is the tired old mutual assured destruction, nuclear winter and end of life on Earth, but it is unlikely for a number of reasons. First, of the US nuclear deterrent triad only the submarine component remains viable, and even it is quite tired. None of the Minuteman missiles has been successfully tested in a long time, and these are ballistic missiles which, once the boost phase is over, follow a perfectly predictable inertial trajectory, making them easy targets for Russia’s new air defense systems. Of the Minutemen that manage to get out of their silos and launch in the general direction of Russia or China, it is unknown how many of their nuclear payloads would actually detonate since these are all quite old and haven’t been tested in a long time either. The US no longer has the ability to make new nuclear charges, having lost the recipe for making the high explosive needed to make them detonate. But that may be a moot point, since at this point no ICBM is likely to be able to penetrate Russian air defenses. As far as Chinese air defenses, it is notable that Russia and China have integrated their early warning systems and China now has four divisions of Russian S-400 Triumph air defense systems and is planning to add more.

Turning to the airborne part of the US nuclear triad, its mainstay is still the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress, the youngest of which is almost 60 years old. It cruises at 260 knots at an altitude of 34000 feet and is the opposite of stealthy, making it easy to shoot down at a stand-off distance of several hundred kilometers. Since this makes it perfectly useless for dropping bombs, all that remains is cruise missiles, which fly at a positively poky 0.65 Mach, again making them easy targets for modern air defenses. There are also some newer stealth bombers—very few and, it has turned out, not too stealthy, putting them essentially in the same category as the Stratofortress, and the cruise missiles they can launch are also those same old subsonic ones.

Lastly, there are the strategic nuclear submarines, which are the only part of the US nuclear triad that is still viable. They remain effective as a deterrent, and they do have the ability to get up close to launch a sneak attack with a good chance that at least a few of the missiles will get through the air defenses, but they can’t possibly hope to get around the inevitability of retaliation which will cause unacceptable, fatal damage to the continental US. This makes them useless as an offensive weapon.

Add to this Russia’s updated nuclear doctrine, according to which any attack against Russian sovereign territory or Russian sovereign interests, whether conventional or nuclear, would open the door to a nuclear retaliation, launched upon warning, and Putin’s solemn promise to counterattack not just against the locations from which a strike is launched but against the centers of decision-making. Considering that Russian missiles are hypersonic and will reach their targets before those of the US reach theirs, and that Russia has the means to shoot down US missiles while the US is unable to shoot down Russian ones, if the US were to launch an attack, those who launched it would be dead before they could find out whether their attack succeeded in causing any damage at all or whether they had just suicided themselves for nothing. All of this adds up to an inevitable conclusion: under no circumstances will the US attack either Russia or China, using either conventional or nuclear weapons.

There are experts who are of the opinion that a world war could spontaneously erupt at any moment without anyone wishing it to do so, just as the world slid into World War I due to a confluence of unhappy accidents. But there is a big difference: the military and civilian leaderships of the warring sides in World War I did not have hypersonic missiles pointed directly at their heads. They thought that the war would be fought far away from their palaces, headquarters and stately mansions. They were, in some cases, quite wrong, but that was their thought originally: why not test our industrial prowess while sacrificing the lives of several million useless peasants?

Now the situation is quite different: any substantial provocation is an automatic self-destruct trigger and all sides know this. Of course, there will be minor provocations such as the US Navy steaming around in the Taiwan Strait or the Black Sea close to the shores of Crimea, but then they do have to earn their keep somehow. In turn, the Russians and the Chinese will periodically up the ante a little bit by shooing them away with a harshly worded radio message or a few shots fired across their bows. But both sides know just how careful they have to be because any serious error will require immediate deescalation and may entail major loss of face. And that, as the saying goes, would be worse than a crime: it would be a mistake.

The provocations of which the US is still capable are likely to grow more and more feeble over time. The US has lost the arms race against both Russia and China and is unlikely to ever catch up. On the other hand, neither Russia nor China is the least bit likely to attack the US. There is no reason to do so, given that they can get what they want—a gradual fading out of US influence—without resorting to large-scale military action. Maintaining a strong defensive posture while projecting power within their expanding spheres of interest would be quite enough for either of them. Thus, all that’s left for the US is hybrid warfare: financial warfare in the form of sanctions, aggressive dollar-printing and large-scale legalized money laundering, informational warfare played out on the internet, medical warfare using novel pathogens, drugs and vaccines, cultural warfare in the form of promoting and defending conflicting systems of values and so on, with military activities limited to the use of proxies, fomenting putsches and civil wars, actions of private military companies and so on.

If Milley is pinning his hopes on being able to provoke a conflict between China and Russia, he is likely to be disappointed. These two very large neighboring countries are synergistic. China has tremendous productive capacity for producing all manner of finished goods but has limited natural resources, is insular and has limited capacity for interacting with the rest of the world except through trade and commerce. Russia, on the other hand, has virtually limitless natural resources but, with a smaller though highly educated population spread out across a vast and somewhat inhospitable terrain, is forced to concentrate its efforts on certain strategically important sectors such as energy and food exports, high-tech weapons systems, nuclear energy, vaccines and energy-intensive products such as fertilizers, plastics and metals where their access to cheap energy provides them with a competitive advantage.

One of Russia’s major strengths is a culturally ingrained ability to understand people from other cultures and to maintain cordial relations even across great cultural divides and enemy lines. Russia has a unique ability to offer stability and security, both through careful diplomacy and by offering advanced defensive weapons systems. The Chinese have been aggressively buying into economies around the world, investing in major infrastructure projects to further their trade, but are sometimes found lacking in diplomatic finesse and in their understanding of local sensibilities, alienating their partners by directly demanding a controlling share in their investments. The Russians, on the other hand, understand that you have to at least kiss a girl before offering to pay her college tuition.

Such finesse tends to be interpreted as weakness by certain Westerners who, over the course of many centuries of fratricidal warfare and genocidal colonialism, have been conditioned to only respect brute force and to understand relationships only in terms of dominance or submission. With the sudden departure of the US from the world stage, many smaller European nations are now actively looking for a new master to lord over them. Both the Chinese and the Russians are likely to leave them disappointed; while Chinese commerce and Russian security (including energy security) will be on offer, they will be on their own and forced to earn their own keep and their oaths of fealty will fall on deaf ears. The Eastern Europeans especially might find it impossible to ingratiate themselves back into the Russian world; the Russians have had their fill of them and their duplicitousness. Their other option will be to go to work for the Chinese.

Russia and China complement each other and are more likely to work with each other rather than against each other in their dealings with each other and with the rest of the world. This is certainly not the case with the US, vis-à-vis either China or Russia. During the 1990s and the naughts, while China was rapidly transforming into the world’s manufacturing hub while Russia was recovering from the setback it had been dealt by the Soviet collapse, the US was able to position itself as the world’s indispensable consuming nation, redirecting a lion’s share of the world’s resources and manufactured products to feed its appetites in exchange for printed dollars (continuously expropriating the world’s savings while exporting inflation) and using the threat of military action against anyone who would challenge this arrangement. But now the situation is different: most of China’s trade is now not with the US but with the rest of the world, Russia is fully recovered and developing slowly but surely, the share of the US in the world’s economy has shrunk, the appetite for printed dollars in the form of US government debt has declined greatly, and as to its former full-spectrum military dominance, see above.

And yet General Milley wishes to fight a tripolar war against two poles that won’t fight each other and aren’t spoiling for a fight with the US either; they just want the US to pack up, go home and no longer darken the horizons around Eurasia. As I took pains to explain above, the US is in no position to challenge either or both of them in an all-out military conflict, or to risk engaging them in a way that runs a major risk of provoking one. What can a giant, sprawling, lavishly funded, corrupt and dysfunctional bureaucracy do under such circumstances in order to justify its existence? The answer is, I believe, obvious: engage in petty mischief, a.k.a. hybrid warfare, but in doing so it finds itself, as I have already explained, at a disadvantage.

The list of petty mischief is long and makes for tedious reading. The best that can be done with it is to make comedy with it. Take, for instance, the imbroglio, worthy of Boccaccio’s Decameron, of Tikhanovskaya the cutlet fairy and phantom president of Belarus, who recently joined the club of bogus replacement leaders, alongside Juan Random Guaidó, phantom president of Venezuela, having failed to seize power from deeply entrenched Byelorussian president Lukashenko, and who is now cooling her heels in neighboring Lithuania. Having recognized the abject failure of Tikhanovskaya’s power grab, the Petty Mischef Department attempted to organize a scandal around a Byelorussian sprinter during the Tokyo Olympics, whose name is… Timanovskaya! You see, they thought that nobody would notice the single-character substitution. The ploy failed, and Timanovskaya is now cooling her heels in neighboring Poland.

There have been other, much larger-scale attempts at petty mischief, similarly ham-handed and similarly spectacular in their failure.

1. There was the attempt to force the entire world to submit to a relentless inoculation campaign (in the works since 2009) in the course of which an interplay between genetically engineered pathogens and genetically engineered vaccines against them would be used to make fabulous profits for Big Pharma while simultaneously selectively genociding the population of certain unfriendly or otherwise undesirable countries. End result: China has largely fought off the pathogen and has produced its own vaccine while Russia has produced several vaccines, the most popular of which has been proven safe and effective and has been turned into a major profit center by being exported to 71 countries and earning Russia more export revenue than arms exports.

Meanwhile, not only are Western vaccines proving less than 50% effective (much less than that for Johnson & Johnson) but thousands of people are actually dropping dead or becoming severely ill from them. Most alarmingly, young, freshly vaccinated athletes are dropping dead from heart attacks right in the middle of a game—dozens of them! The only possible response to this by the authorities—the only one they are capable of—is to double down, requiring everyone to get vaccinated again and again. The marketing strategy of “if our product makes you sick, we’ll give you more of it” is hardly ever effective and, in due course, it is producing open rebellion in many places, shutting down entire industries and generally playing havoc with societies and economies. Mission accomplished!

2. There is an ongoing attempt to force countries around the world to pay a carbon tax for their carbon emissions while those nations that engage in the cargo cult of building solar and wind generation capacity are exempted from it. Lots of expensive climate models kept supercomputers humming and international climate conferences were convened, at which people could wring their hands and wallow in maudlin self-pity over the ever-looming imaginary climate catastrophe. But then came a major complication: both Russia and China managed to turn the situation to their advantage. In the case of China, the case is simple: what allows China to manufacture and export products which the rest of the world loves to import is its use of coal and just a temporary reduction in the use of coal was sufficient to demonstrate that any such constraints would hurt the US through supply chain disruptions more than they would hurt China.

In the case of Russia, the situation is even simpler: from the point of view of carbon dioxide emissions, Russia is the greenest country on earth, deriving the largest share of its electricity from carbon-free nuclear and hydro and low-carbon natural gas. It also has 20% of the world’s forests which, in case of global warming and increased atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations, would spread rapidly north across the tundra toward the Arctic circle, soaking up prodigious amounts of carbon dioxide. Thus, the US, and the rest of the West with it, have negotiated themselves into a cul de sac of their own creation, being forced to cause damage to their economies by pursuing misguided decarbonization policies which nobody would have asked them to pursue otherwise. Again, mission accomplished!

3. Yet another attempt at petty mischief is in the area of human rights and democracy. The notion of individual human rights was rather successfully deployed against the USSR, warping the minds of several generations of Russian intelligentsia into being ashamed of their own country (and almost completely unaware of much ghastlier crimes against humanity carried out by the collective West). The Chinese, on the other hand, were barely swayed from their traditional (be it Confucian or Communist) perspective that balances privileges against responsibilities and leaves very little room for such frivolous notions as individual universal rights. But in recent decades the Russians have managed to claw their way back to a more balanced understanding of their own history and a greater awareness of the multiple atrocities perpetuated by those who would criticize them. The rank hypocrisy of those who would use such tactics has also become glaringly obvious through such outrages as the illegal imprisonment of Julian Assange and the exile of Edward Snowden.

The story of Maria Butina, a spectacular individual who is now a member of the Russian parliament, has also made an impression. She was falsely accused of being a foreign agent based on the now discredited Steele Dossier which Hillary Clinton’s camp had concocted in order to slander Donald Trump. Butina was imprisoned for 18 months, spending much of that time in solitary confinement (a treatment that equates to torture). She was forced to plead guilty to a bogus charge before a kangaroo court judge before being released and allowed to return to Russia. She described her ordeal in a best-selling book and anybody who has read it has absorbed, along the way, an important message: there is simply no such thing as the American justice system. A major reason why Butina had been singled out for such treatment had to do with her last name, which differs by just one character from Putin’s: there’s that single-character substitution again! With a name so similar to that of that horrible dictator Putin, of course she’d be found guilty! I wouldn’t be surprised if there is a certain dim-witted miscreant ensconced in the bowels of the CIA or the State Department who comes up with these harebrained ideas by actually scanning documents for similar-sounding names.

As far as democracy, the concept is valuable but applies differently to each nation, based on its unique values and traditions, but the image of it served up in the US, where about half the electorate feels that they were cheated during the last presidential election, or the EU, which is lorded over by unelected pompous nobodies at the European Commission, or the way it was misapplied in Afghanistan, Iraq and other nations invaded and destroyed by the West, has done much to discredit the concept. Joe Biden, who is now working on convening a virtual assemblage of nations he deems democratic, making a list and checking it twice, making sure to exclude anyone he doesn’t deem sufficiently democratic, is too senile to grasp the simple fact that he has lost any right to appeal to the concept of democracy given the way he got elected and what he’s done to Afghanistan.

The image I will leave you with is of a transport plane piloted by the demented Joe Biden and co-piloted by that giggling twit Kamala Harris, with some number of leaders from supposedly democratic nations (who have failed to absorb the lesson of Afghanistan) clinging to its landing gear, and with General Millie-Vanillie sitting in the cargo hold cleaning his gun, getting ready to fight World War III against both Russia and China.

Here Comes China: Xi Jinping’s speech, Major geo-political events, Joint naval patrol, Shangri-La was a novel

October 25, 2021

Here Comes China:  Xi Jinping’s speech, Major geo-political events, Joint naval patrol, Shangri-La was a novel

by Amarynth for the Saker Blog

There has been a slight pause in these sitreps. This writing became overshadowed with current events, fully covered in the Saker Blog by other writers.  Because of length, we will upgrade this one today from sitrep to guest analysis.

A shortlisting of four major events since the Sitrep paused:

1.Meng Wanzhou’s triumphant return to China and a win against the Long Arm of the Law.  Meng is back at work this morning.  https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202110/1237211.shtml

2.The failed visit (yes another failed diplomatic visit) which resulted in this comical and humorous tweet from Escobar

@RealPepeEscobar

US-CHINA IN 30 SECONDS

  • Jake Sullivan – “We wanna talk about Uyghurs, Hong Kong, Taiwan, human rights.”
  • Yang Jiechi – “No.”
  • Sullivan – “Climate change.”
  • Yang Jiechi – “Maybe. If you listen.”
  • Sullivan – “So we’re coming after you big time.”
  • Yang Jiechi – “Bring it on.”

Uhm, how did that climate change maybe thing work out? Well it turns out not so well. Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping are among several world leaders who will not be attending the big climate summit COP26 scheduled to begin this week in Britain. The two leaders will not even give it a pretense of legitimacy. Now, that is how to give a perfect diplomatic snub!  Or is it only a diplomatic snub?  I think both China and Russia are expressing that any attempt to do productive work with a naked insane emperor is now futile.  We will probably see light speed changes from now on into multipolarity to hopefully gain a world that is now insisting on decent human values and most of all, peaceful resolution of differences.     

3.The other big event was the forming of Aukus, obviously in an attempt to create a mini-NATO against first China and Russia.

4.At the height of all of these were and are still the Taiwan issues and we will take a look at Xi Jinping’s speech a little later in this writing.

One soon finds that it becomes almost impossible to approach China from a generalist perspective. But, we have help. On the economics side, we have Michael Hudson. On the historical side, we have writers such as Godfree Roberts, Jeff J Browne and many others. On the anti-China propaganda side, we have me and a number of reliable commentators on the Saker Blog and on the social, community, and humanity side, we have a host of excellent bloggers, documentary makers, and distributors of information as if one is walking in the streets and in the countryside with your own feet. And of course, China is now taking its rightful place in the world as a leader and has improved markedly in information dissemination; they are taking their place on the world stage as wolf warriors, (Uhm, no, I did not mean to write that, of course, I meant to write ..) diplomats.

Sidebar: China is a massive country and in landmass second only to Russia. But even in this simple measurement, the west tries quibbling techniques. Read it and weep. China is only second but Canada is bigger if we measure waterways. And really, China is really smaller than the US. Take a look at the quibble: https://worldpopulationreview.com/country-rankings/largest-countries-in-the-world

In this year, the year of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party, we experience an almost complete restatement and refinement of China’s goals in our world. We see internal nomenclature such as national rejuvenation, a modern socialist country, and continual reformation with comprehensive plans and strategy, and a peaceful and united domestic environment. Toward the world, we see phrases such as maintaining a revolutionary spirit, the courage to carry out a great struggle with contemporary features, courage, and skill, safeguard sovereignty, and protect security and development interests. We hear that China intends to assume a greater role in and for the world.  Aggression and hegemony are not in the blood of the Chinese people and they will strive for a human community with a shared future. There are specific goals set out. China will:

  • endeavor to improve the global governance system
  • engender peace, development, fairness, justice, democracy and freedom
  • work to strengthen solidarity of people of all other countries
  • engage in all efforts to oppose hegemony and power politics

What is the difference between Putin’s Optimistic Reasonable Conservatism and Xi’s Human Community with a Shared Future and moderately prosperous society?  I cannot see too big of a difference as the qualitative values expressed are similar although the civilizational socialization is different.  As Putin expressed his non-acceptance of woke ‘values’ in his Valdai speech, so China in the last few months took real action.  They threw the feminine men out of their television programs.  The feminine men is an inheritance from Japan to a lesser degree and Korea, to a larger degree.  China does not want girly men to become role models for their children.    They pulled the rug out from underneath expensive additional schools, acting as funnels to expensive university programs, and tutoring that basically burdened the Chinese children.  They have strengthened the Chinese schools to offer all additional education necessary, in order to have consistent educational standards.  They simply stopped computer games for younger children and limited this to no more than 3 hours per week.  They increased physical programs and education to get the kids out and about with healthy activities.  And in stark contrast to the western sphere who wants to control the kids, China just put the responsibility by law, properly and correctly in the parents’ hands.  “On Saturday, the National People’s Congress Standing Committee adopted a new law stating that China’s parents are responsible for family education.”

On Taiwan, we see Xi Jinping expressing the following: “The Taiwan question arose from weakness and chaos and will be resolved with national reunification, the one-China principle, and 1992 resolution”.

Regarding military action; we see even Putin expressing that Xi Jinping does not need to take military action.  The verbose threats come from the US and Australia.

There are three aspects that Putin and Xi Jinping express as in one voice.

  • We are in a time of momentous changes in the world.
  • Both Russia and China are prepared and can ride the waves of change in a manner that is helpful, peaceful, and supportive in and for the world. 
  • The UN (and it has been said a number of times that it needs to be updated) is still the only venue where world problems can be discussed.  From Russia, our Law is the UN Charter and this is expressed by China as well.  The rules-based concept does not feature whatsoever.

These concepts are fully supported by Putin’s speech at Valdai, and Xi Jinping’s speech at the occasion of the 50th anniversary of China’s formal joining of the United Nations.

During the years since the cold war, another momentous alliance grew almost from a grassroots level. This is the Russia / China treaty of Good Neighborliness. Here, with subtitles is what the Chinese office of foreign affairs thinks of this treaty at its 20th anniversary. China and Russia are not allies, but closer than allies:

In this atmosphere of global chaos, Xi Jinping delivered a speech this morning at the occasion of the 50th anniversary of restoration of People’s Republic of China’s lawful seat in the UN:

(Translation)

Speech by H.E. Xi Jinping

President of the People’s Republic of China

At the Conference Marking the 50th Anniversary of the Restoration Of the Lawful Seat of the People’s Republic of China

In the United Nations

25 October 2021

Your Excellency Secretary-General António Guterres,

Your Excellencies Diplomatic Envoys and Representatives of International Organizations,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Friends,

Comrades,

Fifty years ago today, the 26th Session of the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted, with an overwhelming majority, Resolution 2758, and the decision was made to restore all rights of the People’s Republic of China in the United Nations and to recognize the representatives of the Government of the People’s Republic of China as the only legitimate representatives of China to the United Nations. It was a victory for the Chinese people and a victory for people of the world.

Today, on this special date, we are here to review the past history and look to the future, and that makes our gathering all the more significant.

The restoration of New China’s lawful seat in the United Nations was a momentous event for the world and the United Nations. It came as the result of joint efforts of all peace-loving countries that stood up for justice in the world. It marked the return of the Chinese people, or one-fourth of the world’s population, back to the UN stage. The importance was significant and far-reaching for both China and the wider world.

On this occasion, I wish to express, on behalf of the Chinese government and the Chinese people, heartfelt gratitude to all countries that co-sponsored and supported UN General Assembly Resolution 2758, and to pay high tribute to all countries and people that stand on the side of justice.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Friends,

Comrades,

The past five decades since New China restored its lawful seat in the United Nations have witnessed China’s peaceful development and its commitment and dedication to the welfare of all humanity.

— For these 50 years, the Chinese people have demonstrated an untiring spirit and kept to the right direction of China’s developmentamidst changing circumstances, thus writing an epic chapter in the development of China and humanity. Building on achievements in national construction and development since the founding of New China, the Chinese people have started the new historical era of reform and opening-up, and successfully initiated and developed socialism with Chinese characteristics. We have continued to unleash and develop productivity and raise living standards, and achieved a historic breakthrough of leaping from a country with relatively low productivity to the second largest economy in the world. Through much hard work, the Chinese people have attained the goal of fully building a moderately prosperous society on the vast land of China, and won the battle against poverty, thus securing a historic success in eradicating absolute poverty. We have now embarked on a new journey toward fully building a modern socialist country and opened up bright prospects for the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.

For these 50 years, the Chinese people have stood in solidarity and cooperation withpeople around the world and upheld international equity and justice,contributing significantly to world peace and developmentThe Chinese people are peace-loving people and know well the value of peace and stability. We have unswervingly followed an independent foreign policy of peace, stood firm for fairness and justice, and resolutely opposed hegemony and power politics. The Chinese people are a strong supporter of other developing countries in their just struggle to safeguard sovereignty, security and development interests. The Chinese people are committed to achieving common development. From the Tazara Railway to the Belt and Road Initiative, we have done what we could to help other developing countries, and have offered the world new opportunities through our own development. During the trying times of the COVID-19 pandemic, China has been active in sharing COVID response experience with the world, and has sent large quantities of supplies, vaccines and medicines to other countries, and deeply engaged in science-based cooperation on COVID-19 origins tracing, all in a sincere and proactive effort to contribute to humanity’s final victory over the pandemic.

For these 50 years, the Chinese people have upheld the authority and sanctity of the United Nations and practiced multilateralism,and China’s cooperation with the United Nations hasdeepened steadily.China has faithfully fulfilled its responsibility and mission as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, stayed true to the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, and upheld the central role of the United Nations in international affairs. China has stood actively for political settlement of disputes through peaceful means. It has sent over 50,000 peacekeepers to UN peacekeeping operations, and is now the second largest financial contributor to both the United Nations and UN peacekeeping operations. China has been among the first of countries to meet the UN Millennium Development Goals. It has taken the lead in implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, accounting for over 70 percent of global poverty reduction. China has acted by the spirit of the UN Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and earnestly applied the universality of human rights in the Chinese context. It has blazed a path of human rights development that is consistent with the trend of the times and carries distinct Chinese features, thus making major contribution to human rights progress in China and the international human rights cause.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Friends,

Comrades,

The trend of the world, vast and mighty, prospers those who follow it and perishes those who go against it. Over the last 50 years, for all the vicissitudes in the international landscape, the world has remained stable as a whole, thanks to the concerted efforts of people of all countries. The world economy has grown rapidly, and innovation in science and technology has kept breaking new ground. A large number of developing countries have grown stronger, over a billion people have walked out of poverty, and a population of several billion are moving toward modernization.

In the world today, changes unseen in a century are accelerating, and the force for peace, development and progress has continued to grow. It falls upon us to follow the prevailing trend of history, and choose cooperation over confrontation, openness over seclusion, and mutual benefit over zero-sum games. We shall be firm in opposing all forms of hegemony and power politics, as well as all forms of unilateralism and protectionism.

— We should vigorously advocate peace, development, equity, justice, democracy and freedom, which are the common values of humanity, and work together to provide the right guiding philosophy for building a better world. Peace and development are our common cause, equity and justice our common aspiration, and democracy and freedom our common pursuit. The world we live in is diverse and colorful. Diversity makes human civilization what it is, and provides a constant source of vitality and driving force for world development. As a Chinese saying goes, “Without achieving the good of one hundred various schools, the uniqueness of one individual cannot be achieved.” No civilization in the world is superior to others; every civilization is special and unique to its own region. Civilizations can achieve harmony only through communication, and can make progress only through harmonization. Whether a country’s path of development works is judged, first and foremost, by whether it fits the country’s conditions; whether it follows the development trend of the times; whether it brings about economic growth, social advancement, better livelihoods and social stability; whether it has the people’s endorsement and support; and whether it contributes to the progressive cause of humanity.

— We should jointly promote the building of a community with a shared future for mankind, and work together to build an open, inclusive, clean and beautiful world that enjoys lasting peace, universal security and common prosperity. The human race is an integral community and Earth is our common homeland. No person or country can thrive in isolation. Humanity should overcome difficulties in solidarity and pursue common development in harmony. We should keep moving toward a community with a shared future for mankind, and jointly create a better future. To build a community with a shared future for mankind is not to replace one system or civilization with another. Instead, it is about countries with different social systems, ideologies, histories, cultures and levels of development coming together for shared interests, shared rights and shared responsibilities in global affairs, and creating the greatest synergy for building a better world.

— We should stay committed to mutual benefit and win-win results, and work together to promote economic and social development for the greater benefit of our people. As ancient Chinese observed, “The essence of governance is livelihood; and the essence of livelihood is adequacy. Development and happy lives are the common aspirations of people in all countries. Development is meaningful only when it is for the people’s interest, and can sustain only when it is motivated by the people. Countries should put their people front and center, and strive to realize development with a higher level of quality, efficiency, equity, sustainability and security. It is important to resolve the problem of unbalanced and inadequate development, and make development more balanced, coordinated and inclusive. It is also important to strengthen the people’s capacity for development, foster a development environment where everyone takes part and has a share, and create a development paradigm where its outcome benefits every person in every country more directly and fairly. Not long ago, at the 76th Session of the UN General Assembly, I proposed a Global Development Initiative with the hope that countries will work together to overcome impacts of COVID-19 on global development, accelerate implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and build a global community of development with a shared future.

We should step up cooperation, and work together to address the various challenges and global issues facing humanity. The international community is confronted by regional disputes as well as global issues such as terrorism, climate change, cybersecurity and biosecurity. Only with more inclusive global governance, more effective multilateral mechanisms and more active regional cooperation, can these issues be addressed effectively. Climate change is Nature’s alarm bell to humanity. Countries need to take concrete actions to protect Mother Nature. We need to encourage green recovery, green production and green consumption, promote a civilized and healthy lifestyle, foster harmony between man and Nature, and let a sound ecology and environment be the inexhaustible source of sustainable development.

We should resolutely uphold the authority and standing of the United Nations, and work together to practice true multilateralism. Building a community with a shared future for mankind requires a strong United Nations and reform and development of the global governance system. Countries should uphold the international system with the United Nations at its core, the international order underpinned by international law and the basic norms of international relations based on the purposes and principles of the UN Charter. International rules can only be made by the 193 UN Member States together, and not decided by individual countries or blocs of countries. International rules should be observed by the 193 UN Member States, and there is and should be no exception. Countries should respect the United Nations, take good care of the UN family, refrain from exploiting the Organization, still less abandoning it at one’s will, and make sure that the United Nations plays an even more positive role in advancing humanity’s noble cause of peace and development. China will be happy to work with all countries under the principle of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits to explore new ideas and new models of cooperation and keep enriching the practice of multilateralism under new circumstances.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Friends,

Comrades,

A review of the past can light the way forward. Standing at a new historical starting point, China will stay committed to the path of peaceful development and always be a builder of world peace. China will stay committed to the path of reform and opening-up and always be a contributor to global development. China will stay committed to the path of multilateralism and always be a defender of the international order.

As an ancient Chinese poem reads, “Green hills immerse in the same cloud and rain. The same moon lights up towns however far away.” Let us join hands, stand on the right side of history and the side of human progress, and work tirelessly for the lasting and peaceful development of the world and for building a community with a shared future for mankind!

Thank you.

http://www.news.cn/english/2021-10/25/c_1310267311.htm

………………………

To my great surprise, Xi Jinping did not say one word about Taiwan, but sketched out the past as a harbinger of the future while cementing the legal status of China, which is not the legal status of Taiwan.  I guess he feels that the contretemps with Taiwan is not important enough.

On the speeches, we may say that those are lofty ideals. But we also see practical and real interaction between China and Russia. The two countries just completed a first joint naval patrol in waters of the West Pacific,  between October 17th to the 23rd, according to the Chinese Ministry of Defense. The patrol was held right after China and Russia wrapped up a joint naval exercise in the Sea of Japan from October 14th to 17th.

5 Chinese vessels and 5 Russian destroyers and frigates accompanied by six carrier-based helicopters made passage through the Tsugaru Strait (which caused Japan to run for the Prozac). Yet this Strait is not territorial waters, and warships from any country have the right to transit, which means the transit of the Chinese and Russian vessels was in line with international law. The Tsugaru Strait is narrow, only 12 miles wide at its narrowest point from the Sea of Japan to the Pacific Ocean.  This RT link has the photography and videos:  https://www.rt.com/news/538265-russia-china-pacific-patrol/

What is also very interesting is that it is said that the sea lane between these two islands is specifically maintained for quick access of US submarines to the Pacific Ocean.  A Chinese expert opined as follows:

Encircling Japan, particularly sailing to the east side of Japan, is of significance because many key military installations are located on that side, including the US Navy base in Yokosuka, a Chinese military expert who requested anonymity told the Global Times.

Many US military provocations on China in places like the Taiwan Straits and the South China Sea were launched from these bases, the expert said, noting that the joint patrol by Chinese and Russian vessels could be seen as a warning to the US and Japan, which have been rallying up to confront China and Russia, serves the goals of US hegemony, and undermines regional peace and stability.

“The joint maritime patrol is aimed at further developing the China-Russia comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination for the new era, elevating the joint action capabilities of both nations and jointly maintaining international and regional strategic stability. It’s a part of the annual cooperation plan between the two nations …”

In bold are the most important words, and this is not a lofty ideal, but a very hard challenge to the western power and of course Japan. Also, if one looks at that area with a strategic eye, it breaks up the supposed ‘ring of fire’ to keep China contained. In addition, it is also a warning for Japan, which has been dragging its feet to come to an agreement with Russia on islands further North in the island chain.

So, we have to ask, was this a threat? No, not at all on the surface of it, but it was a stark reminder that the so-called freedom of navigation game that has been constant in the South China Sea and the Straight of Taiwan can be played by more than one player.

It is also notable that from 2019, air forces from China and Russia have conducted annual joint strategic air patrols over the East China Sea and Sea of Japan. We are now seeing very visibly one of the aspects of the development of the China-Russia comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination for the new era.

Did you see that? Did you see the evolution of the Russia / China treaty of Good Neighborliness to the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership?

https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/chinese-russian-warships-still-circling-japan-counterweight-us-destabilization-region

https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202110/1237083.shtml

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As is usual, we look at a few of the China data points and I want to remind that you the Chinese governance is always refining, always testing, and prototyping new methods and systems across the spectrum of modern life, and always this is done on a grassroots level.

China is in trouble, clapped-out economically, and is going to bring the west down with it, is the message that we see with monotonous regularity.  The reality is different.   Chinese GDP expanded a whopping 9.8% in the first three quarters of 2021, and major indicators are within a reasonable range.

Evergrande – caused by poor management and that is all and the Chinese government will both let them burn, and also make them take responsibility to Chinese people first.  There will be no monopolies or other behemoth-type business structures in China that can challenge the state.  The Chinese people come first.   https://www.scmp.com/economy/china-economy/article/3152530/china-evergrande-crisis-caused-poor-management-exception?utm_source=rss_feed

(Evergrande has no option but to resume work and they did so today on 10 projects.  There is no quick bankruptcy for them, and certainly no bail-out).

Chinese banks have foreign-currency deposits of $1 trillion for the first time, an opportunity for Beijing to liberalize the country’s capital account. A resilient economy and strengthening currency have attracted record foreign purchases of bonds and stocks while surging demand for goods meant exporters brought back more dollars. The pace of the influx has tested the authorities’ tolerance for a strengthening yuan, with the currency now near a five-year high against a basket of its peers.

Exports grew 20% in September, up from 15.7% in August. September’s gain was higher than the median estimate of 13.3% in a Bloomberg survey of economists. Growth in imports slowed to 11% in September from 23.1% in the previous month.

China-Korea semiconductor industrial complex starts construction amid Beijing’s push for tech self-reliance. The municipal government of Wuxi and memory chip giant SK Hynix have teamed up to develop the China-Korea Integrated Circuit Industrial Park. The city is expected to become home to 19 new semiconductor-related projects with a combined investment of US$4.7 billion.

A Chinese herbal formula for coronavirus patients is undergoing clinical trials in the US for possible approval for people with mild-to-moderate symptoms of the disease. Qingfei Paidu, most commonly called QFPD, is a 21-herb formula whose name literally means lung cleansing and detoxification.

China, which pioneered controlling Covid-19 with lockdown orders and tight border rules, will  “wait and see” about adjusting its zero-tolerance policy. “We are discussing about the new strategy in China … everything is dynamic. We are ready for any possible reassessment”.  (Please do not consider this comment and the previous as an open sesame to start discussing Covid on the Saker Blog.  You all know the blog policy).

Between 1985 – 2019, the average height of a 19-year-old Chinese increased 3.5 inches, or 9 cm, supporting President Xi Jinping’s declaration in July that the country had achieved its goal of establishing a “moderately prosperous society” in time for the Party’s centenary.  This is a result of a relentless project to bring the Chinese people out of abject poverty.

An important question in auto showrooms: Can I sing karaoke in this car? The only acceptable answer is yes, as Nio and XPeng know well. Western rivals are scrambling, “We’ve identified this as a challenge,” said BMW’s Christoph Grote, “Chinese consumers are the most demanding when it comes to digital technology in the car.”

The dreaded Social Credit System which is abhorred in the West by most that do not have an idea what it is about: China’s social credit system is more of a bureaucratic interface for existing legal and regulatory systems than the widespread Western perception of a dystopian algorithm that uses “big-data collection and analysis to monitor, shape, and rate individual’s behavior”. Social credit includes new enforcement mechanisms but is an extension of the law rather than an independent rule-making authority, and all data collection and penalties require a legal basis.

This was mentioned before but as a reminder. When the Chinese students started being hunted and haunted specifically in the US, all the major universities opened campuses in China (they could not afford to lose the Chinese money). For Harvard, it did not take too long to become part of the propaganda war on China and they are moving their Chinese language program from Beijing to National Taiwan University, replacing a partnership with Beijing Language and Culture University. Harvard’s Jennifer Liu said the decision was made because of a perceived lack of friendliness from the host institution, Beijing Language and Culture University (BLCU).

This gives a taste of what is happening in China and now we need to give the regular shout-out to Godfree Roberts’ Here Comes China newsletter that supplies these data points. Subscribe here – it is worth it!: https://www.herecomeschina.com/#subscribe

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In the next few China Sitreps, I will post a selection of documentaries and information on those aspects of China’s history that remain western talking points, whether correct or not. This is Tibet, Tiananmen, Xinjiang, Hong Kong, and the border skirmishes with India as a shortlist. Today we start with Tibet.

Tibet – if you have the romantic western mindset about Tibet, let’s revise that. Your knowledge most certainly comes from a book, movies, and a whole Shangri-La industry spawned in the wake.

Tibet was a dramatically brutal theocratic serfdom and never-ending debt peonage. Under the Dalai Lama in Tibet before China’s takeover:

  • 98% of the population were serfs or slaves or kept in debt peonage.
  • Disobedient serfs endured torture
  • The 14th Dalai Lama’s family owned 6,000 serfs
  • 95% of the population were illiterate
  • In 2015: 0.52% were illiterate
  • And in 2020: extreme poverty was eliminated in Tibet

From this documentary, you will learn that Tibetan Buddhism was not the sweet, and romantic Buddhist religion based on peace and high ideals and spinning colorful prayer wheels and praying in monasteries. It was based on the Indian Caste System where an extreme minority controlled the vast majority and kept them in abject poverty.

You will also learn why, on the death of a Dalai Lama (meaning God on earth), the successor, the soul boy was always found and appointed from a very poor family, in order to avoid any power struggles between the very few rich families.  The connection with the Roman Catholic Pope will astound you. And then you will see brutal sights of religious and shamanic powers whipped into inhumane forces. You will learn that Dalai Lamas regularly fled Tibet, sometimes to flee British Forces.

Tibet was the first lever that was used by at that time British forces, and this lever was seamlessly taken over by the rest of the west, to break up China, even after some territory had to be given to Japan and some even to Korea. You will learn how the Brits just simply carved out pieces of Chinese land from the Indian side. This effort to break up China is still in full swing today, by the current hegemon in its frenzied dying attempts to own the whole world using weapons, war, lawfare, internal destabilization, the appointment of external presidents, propaganda, kidnapping of high officials, outright assassinations, drugs, biological substances, and poison. Of course from the 1950s, CIA involvement around Tibet is well documented even to training ethnic Tibetans in Colorado for a planned Tibetan revolution.

You will also see one of the reasons why China will not let itself be hegemonized today, specifically with its history of never fighting a war of conquest in its 4,000 years of existence. The population stands firm and resolute. Never aired footage in the west will have you take part in the joy when religions serfdom and debt peonage was abolished in 1959 and the Tibetan Religious Serfs could burn their debt peonage documents.

If your stance in life is ‘Free Tibet’, which mine was, once upon a time before I did my homework, consider if you were romanticized by the CIA and a novel called Lost Horizon (1933) by English writer James Hilton. Two movies followed (Frank Capra directing one), a Broadway play, and the world’s first mass-produced paperback, all called Lost Horizon, set in a fictional utopian lamasery called Shangri-La, high in the mountains of Tibet. ‘Free Tibet’ for you may just be based on the fiction of Shangri-La.

China in the crosshairs – is a war in the Far East and Pacific next?

OCTOBER 03, 2021

China in the crosshairs – is a war in the Far East and Pacific next?

As in my previous post, I will begin with referring you to two pieces.

First, the typical China-bashing propaganda: https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/taiwan-bristles-lashes-out-after-chinas-record-aerial-show-force

Second, a very solid debunking of the China-bashing crap above: https://www.moonofalabama.org/2021/10/how-ap-reuters-and-scmp-propagandize-their-readers-against-china.html

By the way, I also highly recommend to all my readers to read Moon of Alabama  (https://www.moonofalabama.org/) at least once a day.  ‘b’ is a very solid analyst and his website is superb.  Even better is the fact that he often writes about topics I do not cover, or he covers them differently, so make sure to check him out daily 🙂

Now about China.

There is no doubt in my mind that the Anglos have had China in the crosshairs for a while and that now China has become the evil, devious boogeyman #1, displacing Russia from that position.   By the way, this hysterical paranoia and hatred of China is equally shared by the two indistinguishable factions of the single Imperial Party which runs the USA: hatred for China is a political consensus, at least in the USA ruling class (hence the stupid “CCP virus” expression and other such illiterate infantilisms).

Here is my strictly personal and subjective interpretations of what happened and why China is now the Official Enemy Number One Hypervillain.

I will being by comparing China to the other two AngloZionist Official Hypervillain Enemies Number 2 and 3.

Russia.  The US/NATO/EU policy on Russia has comprehensively failed.  It has failed politically (the Evil Putin “KGB killer” is still in power and does not even have a semi-serious competitor – pro-western sentiments in Russias are now somewhere in the 1-2 percent max), economically (Russia has recovered from both sanctions and the COVID induced crisis and is booming, at least compared to the West) and militarily (the US and NATO are now the proverbial paper tigers).  Finally, the entire “Ukrainian strategy” has also faceplanted and has now turned into an unmanageable nightmare for the EU (which richly deserves this). In other words, Europe is now a “bad place” for the USA which really can’t do much to change this reality.

Iran.  The US/NATO/EU policy on Iran has also comprehensively failed.  Yes, Iran is going through very difficult times, the sanctions and COVID did, and are still, hurting it, but militarily Iran has successfully defeated the AngloZionist alliance in two ways: first, by deterring the AngloZionists from a direct attack (so far) and by showing its true capabilities in its superb missile strikes on US bases: a CENTCOM+Israeli attack on Iran would be suicidal, and the AngloZionists know it (even while they deny it).  Add to this the Russian+Iranian victory in Syria and the terminal inability of the Israelis to deal with Hezbollah and and Saudis to deal with the Houthis, and you will see that the Middle East is yet another “bad place”  for the USA which really can’t do much to change this reality (if they attack Iran it will be the end of Israel and CENTCOM). And I won’t even mention the Kabul event which showed to the word the true face and capabilities of the US armed forces.

Which logically leaves only China as the Official Enemy Number One Hypervillain.  Here are a few reasons for that:

  • China is the biggest and strongest economic power on the planet and the Chinese are geniuses in commerce and trade.
  • China is run by a leadership which the US cannot control, break, corrupt or otherwise subdue (I am talking about the leadership collectively, not individuals;  traitors exist everywhere).
  • China and Russia have a very successful alliance which the Anglos tried very hard to break by spreading anti-Chinese propaganda in Russia and anti-Russian propaganda in China.  The result?  The two countries are MORE than “just” allied, they are symbionts who are so “perfectly different” and that “fit together” like Lego pieces!
  • China has made incredible progress in the military field: in the 80s and 90s, China had a huge military, but which was decades behind the USA and the USSR/Russia.  This is now changing very very fast and has been for 20 years.
  • While the US has a money printing press, China has actual technologies and real manufacturing capabilities and the outcome here is not in doubt: it’s just a matter of time before the quasi industrialized USA becomes un-resucable by just printing billions of dollars.
  • The US cannot control the Chinese Internet, which deprives it from is main weapon (all that crap about human rights, the (non-) massacre in Tienanmen, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Tibet etc. etc. etc. as if the West was not the worst violator of human rights on the planet, and by far!)

I am sure there are many more reasons, but the above is just a sample.  It is crucial to keep in mind the difference between reasons and pretexts.  Nobody in the western ruling class give a damn about human rights or any other Chinese problems (fictional or very real).  And I am not denying that there are real problems in China, like in any other country by the way.  I am saying that the western rhetoric about China is hypocritical crap.

Also, China does have real weaknesses.  I will list only the few I am aware of:

  • While the Chinese military has made immense progress, it is mostly technological.  Russian officers who trained with their Chinese counterparts regularly report that “culture” of the Chinese ground forces is still much inferior to, say, the Russian ones.  But I bet you that a Chinese solider in defense of his own land will outperform any Anglo imperialist solider fighting for “democracy” (Ha!) thousands of miles away from home.  Again, like the USA, the Chinese culture is not really a military one and the strengths of the Chinese lie elsewhere (commerce, emigration, business, etc.).  Also, it is likely that the problems reported by Russian military advisors about the Chinese ground forces do not apply to “high tech” domains such as aerospace, acoustics, etc.  Finally, even if  historically the Chinese are not a nation born warriors, it is likely that this weakness is much more evident in “general purpose” military forces and is much less applicable to the PRC’s specialized and high-tech forces (Air Force, Navy, special forces, ELINT, etc.)
  • The Chinese are still struggling in some key military technology domains, such as aircraft engines, but they are catching up really fast.  From the Anglo point of view, this means that it is a “now or never” situation, lest China accomplishes what Russia did between 2000 and 2021, which they might.
  • China, like Russia, is a multi-ethnic and multi-religious state, which is why the Anglos always try to use this diversity against the peoples of China (they failed in Russia, but in Chechnia they came very close, do we should never discount that real Anglo capability!).
  • China is run by the Chinese Communist Party which inevitably brings images of Nike-Gulags, devious secret agents and all the rest of the stuff Anglos like to scare themselves with.  That the word “Communism” in 2021 has a totally different meaning than in the 20th century is too complex a notion for many to even contemplate.
  • As many of my readers know, I do not consider that Russia is culturally part of Europe, but it is geographically European, at least west of the Urals, and the Russians are (mostly) “White” which western racists nowadays seem to like a lot (not so much in the times of Nazi Europe, obviously).  So the bad old European racism, itself a pretext for imperialism, is even worse with these “Fu-manchu gooks”.  Sinophobia has a particularly long history in the United States, much older than russophobia, by the way.
  • China is at least partially surrounded by Anglo colonies run comprador elites (Taiwan, Japan, etc.) and by countries who fear the very real regional influence and power of China (Philippines, India, etc.).
  • The US has some truly ideal “unsinkable bases” in the region (Japan, Hawaii, Australia, etc.) which are hard to neutralize (but that is also changing, and quickly).

Again, this is a partial list, and I am sure that our commentators can expand on this, or point out that some of my assumptions are simply wrong.

But let’s not overthink this either.

The western ruling elites are in a panic and they are consolidating into a smaller but potentially tougher “Anglosphere” whose best (or “least bad”) positions are in the Pacific (as I have always maintained, big, multinational alliances are great as fig-leafs to justify imperialism, but militarily they inevitably suck, badly).  From their point of view this policy of “circling the wagons” (expression straight from genocidal, imperialistic times) makes sense and is really the own viable option.

I will mention a few good news, and then let our commentators take over.  Here are a few good ones:

  • Russia will never allow the Anglosphere to defeat China militarily.  Simply put, she can’t afford it.  I will make a prediction: Chinese SSNs will, in the near future, get much better sensors and integration, they “develop” better quieting technologies and faster SSNs with smaller crews and superior automation.  As for Chinese aircraft, they are already very impressive, and China does not have the same need as Russia for advanced long range strategic bombers (where they still lag behind the most): they can use missiles instead.
  • The pace of progress of the PRC is truly amazing and, unlike Russia’s, the Chinese industrial base is huge and once they “get” a technology “right” – they can produce it in huge amounts.  So even IF the best Chinese submarine is still inferior or, at best, more or less on par, with the original Los Angeles class, they can produce them (and other ships or aircraft) in much larger amounts than the Anglosphere.
  • The Chinese space program does, to my admittedly non-engineer eyes, look much more promising that the PR crap of Bezos or Musk managed to peddle to the terminally misinformed US tax payer.  This is very important, crucial even, for modern warfare.
  • The Chinese leaders are (FINALLY!) speaking up!!  In the past, it was all Putin and Russia, the Chinese mostly kept a low profile, but now they are confident enough to call a “stone and stone” and they are very successfully hitting back at the Anglo propaganda, openly and bluntly.
  • By all accounts, the Chinese are proud patriots who will not sell their newly and very painfully acquired sovereignty to anybody (good for them, may all countries follow this model!).  They also know history, including how the Anglos waged war on them to sell opium (no crap about human rights then, just brute gang warfare).  They can also look at modern Japan and see what true Anglo domination can do to a ancient and noble culture.

Again, I invite you all to add to this list, or dispel my misconceptions!

My personal bottom line is this: the major powers are all preparing for a major war in Far East Asia and the Pacific.  God willing, and with the wise leadership of Putin and Xi, it will never happen.

But yes, China is, in my opinion, definitely in the Anglo crosshairs.

Now I turn this over to you.

Hugs and cheers

Andrei

The Living Dead Pax Americana

September 30, 2021

The Living Dead Pax Americana

Perth in Australia will be a forward base for nuclear-powered and nuclear weapon-carrying American subs.

by Pepe Escobar – posted with the author’s permission and cross-posted widely. 

Pax Americana was always a minor character in a zombie apocalypse flick.

Pax Americana is actually The Eternal Return of the Living Dead. “Pax” was never in order; War Inc. rules. The end of WWII led directly to the Cold War. The unipolar moment was an arc from the First Gulf War to the bombing of Yugoslavia. 9/11 launched the Global War on Terror (GWOT), renamed Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) by Team Obama. We are now entering Cold War 2.0 against China.

What former CIA analyst Ray McGovern memorably describes as the MICIMATT (military-industrial-congressional-intelligence-media-academia-think tank complex) never did “Pax”. They do War, in unison, like The Knights Who Say “Ni!” – minus the comic flair.

Take this Knight for the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), the heart of the establishment matrix. CFR specializes in Kissingerian Divide and Rule. Now that applies, in spades, to the Russia-China strategic partnership.

Knights overwhelmingly state the obvious: “Chinese power must be contained”. They sell the current, serial imperial debacle as “grand strategic moves”, in a quirky, lost in translation mixed salad of Gramsci and Lampedusa: a “new order” (engineered by the Empire) is being born via “everything must change so everything may remain the same” – privileging the Empire.

Other Knights even propose the ludicrous notion that the current POTUS, an actual zombie remote-controlled by a teleprompter, is capable of conceiving a “foreign policy for the middle class” , as if the MICIMATT would ever approve a scheme to “advance prosperity in the free world as a whole”. The “free world” has just been stunned by the “prosperity” offered to Afghanistan during 20 “bombing to democracy” years.

And then there are British Knights, who at least should have known their Monty Python by heart, carping about illiberalism and the “regimes created by Xi and Putin” , which will “crumble” and be succeeded by “anarchy and new despotisms.” Same old Anglo haughtiness mixed with piercing ignorance. Oh, those Asiatic “tyrannies” threatening the White Man’s civilizational drive.

We all live in an Aussie submarine

Now it’s all about AUKUS – actually U SUK A. Until recently, only the P5 – the five permanent UNSC members – possessed nuclear-powered submarines. India joined the club, and later rather than sooner, Australia.

Every major player knows the next American war will not be about remote Pacific islands. Taiwan, though, is a completely different ball game. U SUK A is mostly about Taiwan.

U SUK A was finalized at the G7 summit in Carbis Bay last June. That was an Anglo Boys Club affair, discussed exclusively by the Biden-BoJo-Morrison troika – and duly excluding Japan, even as Tokyo all but drew a samurai sword yelling its intent of supporting Taiwan.

The problem is there have been no leaks of the fine print contained in U SUK A. Only spin. Yet it’s already clear that U SUK A goes way beyond building Aussie nuclear subs. Canberra will also have access to Tomahawks, Hornets and even become part of American hypersonic missile research.

But then, in a slip, Australian Defense Minister Peter Dutton gave away the game: U SUK A will allow the upgrading of “the infrastructure in Perth, that will be necessary for the operation of these submarines. I expect we will see…lease arrangements or greater joint operations between our navies in the future.”

Translation: Perth will be a forward base for nuclear-powered and nuclear weapon-carrying American subs.

Why U SUK A now? Let’s go back to WWII – and the same old cartoonish geopolitics of benign Anglo maritime island powers pitted against the “evil” Eurasian heartland.

WWII was the solution to simultaneously prevent Germany from dominating the Atlantic and Japan from dominating the Asia-Pacific (by the way, that’s the correct terminology: “Indo-Pacific” is Empire-speak).

Germany-Japan was all about an alliance that would be predominant across the Eurasian heartland. Now, the Empire of Chaos is being slowly but surely expelled from the Eurasian heartland – this time by the Russia-China strategic partnership.

Those with technical knowledge across the Beltway – not, not the Knights – are aware the US is not a match for hypersonic Russia. Yet the Americans believe they can make life unbearable for Beijing. The US establishment will allow China to control the Western Pacific over their dead bodies. Enter the instrumentalization of Australia.

A big question is what will be the new role of the Five Eyes. With U SUK A, the Anglo Club has already stepped beyond mere intel sharing and spying on communications. This is a military pact between Three Eyes.

Depending on the composition of its new government, Germany could become a Sixth Eye – yet in a subordinate role. With U SUK A, NATO as a whole, fresh from its spectacular Afghan debacle, becomes little else than a semi-relevant vassal. This is all about maritime power.

U SUK A in effect is a Quad Plus, with India and Japan, the Fifth Columnist Asians, only allowed to play the role of, once again, mere vassals.

War before 2040

Not surprisingly, the first, concise technical and strategic assessment of U SUK A is Russian, written by Alexander Timokhin and published in Vzglyad, closely linked to GRU intelligence. Here, provided by John Helmer, is an essential English translation.

The key points:

– the extra subs will create a serious, additional threat; “the problem of combating enemy submarine forces will become quite acute for China.”

– Geographically, “Australia can completely block the connection between China and the Indian Ocean.”

– Australia will meet the deadlines only if it lays “more submarines a year than the Americans.”

– It is “possible to quickly make Australia a country with a submarine fleet.” These “gigantic investments and sharp political turns are not carried out just like that. The hegemony of the Anglo-Saxons in the world is seriously shaken.”

And that brings us to the inevitable conclusion: “It is worth recognizing that the world is on the verge of war.”

Even before the Vzglyad strategic assessment, I had submitted the ravings of yet another Beltway Knight – widely praised as a sage – to an old school, dissident Deep State intel analyst. His assessment was merciless.

He wrote me, “the geopolitical logic is that the China-Russia alliance was determined to be against US interests, much as the Mao-Stalin alliance. SEATO and NATO are being replicated. The treaty between England, Australia and the US is part of the Pacific rebalancing, or a new SEATO. NATO is part of the offset against Russia-China in Europe.”

On what might lie ahead, he noted that “the coup against the US, Australia, England and NATO would be a French-Russian alliance to break up NATO and isolate Germany. Russia has unsuccessfully approached Germany, and now may approach France. The loss of France would effectively end NATO.”

He sees U SUK A all dressed up with nowhere to go: “As it stands now, China is in command of the Pacific and Australia and Britain mean nothing. Russia can overrun NATO in two weeks, our adversaries’ hypersonic missiles can destroy all NATO airfields within five to ten minutes and the battle for Europe would be over.”

He’s adamant that “the US cannot project power into the Pacific. Chinese submarine missiles would finish off the US fleet in short order. The Australian submarine issue is really irrelevant; if the CIA had an organization that was worth anything they would know that our adversaries already can spot and destroy our nuclear submarines without the slightest difficulty. The entire US Navy is obsolete and defenseless against Russian missiles.”

And it gets worse – at least for the cheerleading Knights: “The F-35 is obsolete. The Air Force is largely worthless, as Russian and Chinese missiles can finish off their airfields or aircraft carriers in short order. The woke US Army is more worthless than the French Army with their Maginot Line. The Joint Chiefs of Staff are paid less than 200k a year, and are second or third rate talent. The US is a sinking ship.”

Assuming that’s really the case, the – nuclear – war against China in the Western Pacific, projected in the Beltway to happen in the second half of the 2030s, would be over even before it started. Taiwan may even be part of China by then – an offshoot of Beijing always proposing economic exchanges to all, while Washington always “proposes” war.

One thing though will never change: The Knights Who Say “Ni!” singin’ the praise of Pax Americana to the utter indifference of the unruly plebs.

Eurasian consolidation ends the US unipolar moment – Part 2 of 2

SEPTEMBER 24, 2021

Eurasian consolidation ends the US unipolar moment – Part 2 of 2

By Pepe Escobar, posted with permission and first posted at Asia Times

Part 1 is here

The 20th anniversary summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, enshrined no less than a new geopolitical paradigm.

Iran, now a full SCO member, was restored to its traditionally prominent Eurasian role, following the recent $400 billion-worth trade and development deal struck with China. Afghanistan was the main topic – with all players agreeing on the path ahead, as detailed in the Dushanbe Declaration. And all Eurasian integration paths are now converging, in unison, towards the new geopolitical – and geoeconomic – paradigm.

Call it a multipolar development dynamic in synergy with the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

The Dushanbe Declaration was quite explicit on what Eurasian players are aiming at: “a more representative, democratic, just and multipolar world order based on universally recognized principles of international law, cultural and civilizational diversity, mutually beneficial and equal cooperation of states under the central coordinating role of the UN.”

For all the immense challenges inherent to the Afghan jigsaw puzzle, hopeful signs emerged this Tuesday, when Hamid Karzai and Abdullah Abdullah met in Kabul with the Russian presidential envoy Zamir Kabulov, China’s special envoy Yue Xiaoyong, and Pakistan’s special envoy Mohammad Sadiq Khan.

This troika – Russia, China, Pakistan – is at the diplomatic forefront. The SCO reached a consensus that Islamabad will be coordinating with the Taliban the formation of a government also including Tajiks, Uzbeks and Hazaras.

The most glaring, immediate consequence of the SCO not only incorporating Iran but also taking the Afghan bull by the horns, fully supported by the Central Asian “stans”, is that the Empire of Chaos has been completely marginalized.

From Southwest Asia to Central Asia, a real reset has as protagonists the SCO, the Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU), BRI and the Russia-China strategic partnership. The missing links so far, for different reasons – Iran and Afghanistan – are now fully incorporated to the chessboard.

In my frequent conversations with Alastair Crooke, one of the world’s foremost political analysts, he evoked once again Lampedusa’s The Leopard: everything must change so everything must remain the same. In this case, imperial hegemony, as interpreted by Washington: “In its growing confrontation with China, a ruthless Washington has demonstrated that what matters to it now is not Europe, but the Indo-Pacific region.” That’s Cold War 2.0 prime terrain.

With very little potential to contain China now that it’s been all but expelled from the Eurasia heartland, the fallback position had to be a classic maritime power play: the “free and open Indo-Pacific”, complete with Quad and AUKUS, the whole set up spun to death as an “effort” attempting to preserve dwindling American supremacy.

The sharp contrast between the SCO continental integration drive and the “we all live in an Aussie submarine” gambit (my excuses to Lennon-McCartney) speaks for itself. A toxic mix of hubris and desperation is in the air, with not even a whiff of pathos to alleviate the downfall.

The Global South is not impressed. Addressing the forum in Dushanbe, President Putin remarked that the portfolio of nations knocking on the SCO’s door was huge, and that was not surprising at all. Egypt, Qatar and Saudi Arabia are now SCO dialogue partners, on the same level with Afghanistan and Turkey. It’s quite feasible they may be joined next year by Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Serbia and a cast of dozens.

And it doesn’t stop in Eurasia. In his meticulously timed address to CELAC, Xi Jinping no less than invited 33 Latin American nations to be part of the Eurasia-Africa-Americas New Silk Roads.

Remember the Scythians

Iran as a SCO protagonist and at the center of the New Silk Roads restores it to a rightful historic role. By the middle of the first millennium B.C., Northern Iranians ruled the core of the steppes in Central Eurasia. By that time the Scythians had migrated into the Western steppe, while other steppe Iranians made inroads as far away as China.

Scythians – a Northern (or “East”) Iranian people – were not necessarily just fierce warriors. That’s a crude stereotype. Very few in the West know that the Scythians developed a sophisticated trade system, as described by Herodotus among others, linking Greece, Persia and China.

And why’s that? Because trade was an essential means to support their sociopolitical infrastructure. Herodotus got the picture because he actually visited the city of Olbia and other places in Scythia.

The Scythians were called Saka by the Persians – and that leads us to another fascinating territory: the Sakas may have been one of the prime ancestors of the Pashtun in Afghanistan.

What’s in a name – Scythian? Well, multitudes. The Greek form Scytha meant Northern Iranian “archer”. So that was the denomination of all the Northern Iranian peoples living between Greece in the West and China in the East.

Now imagine a very busy international commerce network developed across the heartland, with the focus on Central Eurasia, by the Scythians, the Sogdians, and even the Xiongnu – who kept battling the Chinese on and off, as detailed by early Greek and Chinese historical sources.

These Central Eurasians traded with all the peoples living on their borders: that meant Europeans, Southwest Asians, South Asians and East Asians. They were the precursors of the multiple Ancient Silk Roads.

The Sogdians followed the Scythians; Sogdiana was an independent Greco-Bactrian state in the 3rd century B.C. – encompassing areas of northern Afghanistan – before it was conquered by nomads from the east that ended up establishing the Kushan empire, which soon expanded south into India.

Zoroaster was born in Sogdiana; Zoroastrianism was huge in Central Asia for centuries. The Kushans for their part adopted Buddhism: and that’s how Buddhism eventually arrived in China.

By the fist century A.D. all these Central Asian empires were linked – via long-distance trade – to Iran, India and China. That was the historical basis of the multiple, Ancient Silk Roads – which linked China to the West for several centuries until the Age of Discovery configured the fateful Western maritime trade dominance.

Arguably, even more than a series of interlinked historical phenomena, the denomination “Silk Road” works best as a metaphor of cross-cultural connectivity. That’s what is at the heart of the Chinese concept of New Silk Roads. And average people across the heartland feel it, because that’s imprinted in the collective unconscious in Iran, China and all Central Asian “stans”.

The Revenge of the Heartland

Glenn Diesen, Professor at the University of South-Eastern Norway and an editor at the Russia in Global Affairs journal, is among the very few top scholars who are analyzing the process of Eurasia integration in depth.

His latest book practically spells out the whole story in its title: Europe as the Western Peninsula of Greater Eurasia: Geoeconomic Regions in a Multipolar World.

Diesen shows, in detail, how a “Greater Eurasia region, that integrates Asia and Europe, is currently being negotiated and organized with a Chinese-Russian partnership at the center. Eurasian geoeconomic instruments of power are gradually forming the foundation of a super-region with new strategic industries, transportation corridors and financial instruments. Across the Eurasian continent, states as different as South Korea, India, Kazakhstan and Iran are all advancing various formats for Eurasia integration.”

The Greater Eurasia Partnership has been at the center of Russian foreign policy at least since the St. Petersburg forum in 2016. Diesen duly notes that, “while Beijing and Moscow share the ambition to construct a larger Eurasian region, their formats differ. The common denominator of both formats is the necessity of a Sino-Russian partnership to integrate Eurasia.” That’s what was made very clear at the SCO summit.

It’s no wonder the process irks the Empire immensely, because Greater Eurasia, led by Russia-China, is a mortal attack against the geoeconomic architecture of Atlanticism. And that leads us to the nest of vipers debate around the EU concept of “strategic autonomy” from the US; that would be essential to establish true European sovereignty – and eventually, closer integration within Eurasia.

European sovereignty is simply non-existent when its foreign policy means submission to dominatrix NATO. The humiliating, unilateral withdrawal of Afghanistan coupled with Anglo-only AUKUS was a graphic illustration that the Empire doesn’t give a damn about its European vassals.

Throughout the book Diesen shows, in detail, how the concept of Eurasia unifying Europe and Asia “has through history been an alternative to the dominance of maritime powers in the oceanic-centric world economy”, and how “British and American strategies have been deeply influenced” by the ghost of an emerging Eurasia, “a direct threat to their advantageous position in the oceanic world order”.

Now, the crucial factor seems to be the fragmentation of Atlanticism. Diesen identifies three levels: the de facto decoupling of Europe and the US propelled by Chinese ascendancy; the mind-boggling internal divisions in the EU, enhanced by the parallel universe inhabited by Brussels eurocrats; and last but not least, “polarization within Western states” caused by the excesses of neoliberalism.

Well, just as we think we’re out, Mackinder and Spykman pull us back in. It’s always the same story: the Anglo-American obsession in preventing the rise of a “peer competitor” (Brzezinski) in Eurasia, or an alliance (Russia-Germany in the Mackinder era, now the Russia-China strategic partnership) capable, as Diesen puts it, “of wrestling geoeconomic control away from the oceanic powers.”

As much as imperial strategists remain hostages of Spykman – who ruled that the US must control the maritime periphery of Eurasia – definitely it’s not AUKUS/Quad that is going to pull it off.

Very few people, East and West, may remember that Washington had developed its own Silk Road concept during the Bill Clinton years – later co-opted by Dick Cheney with a Pipelineistan twist, and then circling all back to Hillary Clinton, announcing her own Silk Road dream in India in 2011.

Diesen reminds us how Hillary sounded remarkably like a proto-Xi: “Let’s work together to create a new Silk Road. Not a single thoroughfare like its namesake, but an international web and network of economic and transit connections. That means building more rail lines, highways, energy infrastructure, like the proposed pipeline to run from Turkmenistan, through Afghanistan, through Pakistan and India.”

Hillary does Pipelineistan! Well, in the end, she didn’t. Reality dictates that Russia is connecting its European and Pacific regions, while China connects its developed east coast with Xinjiang, and both connect Central Asia. Diesen interprets it as Russia “completing its historical conversion from a European/Slavic empire to a Eurasian civilizational state.”

So in the end we’re back to…the Scythians. The prevailing neo-Eurasia concept revives the mobility of nomadic civilizations – via top transportation infrastructure – to connect everything between Europe and Asia. We could call it the Revenge of the Heartland: they are the powers building this new, interconnected Eurasia. Say goodbye to the ephemeral, post-Cold War US unipolar moment.

العودة إلى الاتفاق النووي… بلا شروط

 ناصر قنديل

  رغم الكلام الفارغ الصادر عن المسؤولين الأميركيين، تحت عنوان أنّ واشنطن لن تواصل التفاوض حول الملف النووي الإيراني إلى ما لا نهاية، وعن خيار التخلي عن الاتفاق النووي، أو عن وجود بدائل للعودة إلى الاتفاق، يعرف كل مسؤول في واشنطن وتل أبيب والرياض وباريس ولندن وبرلين أن ليس في جعبتهم شيء غير العودة إلى الاتفاق، وأنّ كلّ الطلبات الإضافية كأثمان للعودة، سواء في الملفات الإقليمية أو ملف الصواريخ أو إبقاء بعض العقوبات، سيعني عدم العودة، كما يعرفون أنه عندما تقول إيران إنها لن تواصل التفاوض إلى ما لا نهاية وإن لديها بدائل للاتفاق، فيجب أن يأخذوا كلامها على محمل الجد، ذلك أن الزمن يفعل لصالح إيران، وفقاً لما يقوله الأميركيون والإسرائيليون وما قاله بالأمس مدير عام الوكالة الدولية للطاقة الذرية، عن أنّ إيران تستثمر الوقت لمراكمة المزيد من اليورانيوم المخصّب بنسب عالية يجعلها أقرب لما يسمّونه بالحظة النووية الحرجة، وهي لحظة امتلاك ما يكفي لإنتاج قنبلة نووية.

بالتوازي لا يملك الأميركيون والأوروبيون سوى إغواء رفع العقوبات لتحفيز إيران لقبول العودة، والالتزام بموجباتها المنصوص عليها في الاتفاق، خصوصاً أن إيران التزمت منفردة لسنتين بالاتفاق في ظل الانسحاب الأميركي بلا سبب أو مبرّر كما يقول جميع الشركاء الآخرين بمن فيهم الأوروبيون ووكالة الطاقة الذرية والأمم المتحدة عدا عن الصين وروسيا، والعودة عن العقوبات اليوم هي إعلان العودة إلى الاتفاق من الجانب الأميركي لامتلاك مشروعية مطالبة إيران بالعودة المماثلة، ووفقاً لما يقوله الأميركيون و»الإسرائيليون» أيضاً فإنّ رفع العقوبات عن إيران لم يعد يملك ذات السحر الذي كان يملكه قبل ست سنوات يوم توقيع الاتفاق في مثل هذه الأيام، حيث كانت العقوبات صادرة عن الأمم المتحدة، وهذا قد سقط إلى غير رجعة، وفتح أمام إيران الطريق لحلول اقتصادية ومالية عديدة، لم تنجح العقوبات الأميركية بتعطيلها، فالمتاجرة بين إيران وروسيا والصين وتركيا وباكستان واليابان وكوريا الجنوبية والعراق  وسواها من الدول، بقيت تجد بدائل لها تتفادى العقوبات الأميركية، فيما نجحت إيران بتطوير صناعات نفطية أضعفت حاجتها لتصدير النفط الخام، كما نجحت بتطوير اقتصادها لتفادي حجم الاقتصاد الاستهلاكي والريعي لحساب الإنتاج.

عندما تقول واشنطن إنها تستعجل العودة إلى الاتفاق النووي تسهيلاً للتفرغ لمواجهة الصين، فهل تنتظر من الصين أن تقف مكتوفة الأيدي، وهي تعلم وتقول إنها تعلم، أن الاتفاق الاستراتيجي الاقتصادي بين الصين وإيران أفقد العقوبات الأميركية فعاليتها، وأسقط قيمة العودة للاتفاق النووي بالنسبة لإيران، وجعل عائداته مجرد مكاسب إضافية لا يجوز إضاعتها، لكنها لا تستحق القتال من أجلها، فيما تعرف واشنطن أن الضفة الدولية الموازية للاهتمام الأميركي بالمواجهة التي تمثلها موسكو باتت شريكاً استراتيجياً لطهران في العديد من السياسات الإقليمية، التي تجعل الحفاظ على إيران قوية موضع اهتمام صيني- روسي، لا يمكن للأميركي تبديله لا بالإغراءات ولا بالتهديدات لكل من الصين وروسيا.

الكلام الأميركي عن بدائل يعني شيئاً واحداً هو العودة إلى خطة الرئيس السابق دونالد ترامب التي صعد الرئيس جو بايدن على قاعدة القول بأنها خطأ جسيم، وأنه في ظلها طوّرت إيران نظام الصواريخ وطوّرت قوى المقاومة مزيداً من الحضور، وتمّ اختصار المسافة عن اللحظة النووية الحرجة من سنة إلى بضعة أسابيع كما قال كل من وزير الخارجية الأميركية أنتوني بلينكن ومستشار الأمن القومي الأميركي جايك سوليفان والمبعوث الأميركي الخاص روبرت مالي مراراً، أما الرهان على الخيار العسكري، فهل من عاقل يتخيّل أنّ أحداً يأخذه على محمل الجد في ضوء المشهد الأفغاني، والتلويح بالاعتماد على ضربات «إسرائيلية» يبدو مجرد مزحة سمجة في ضوء الكلام «الإسرائيلي» والمؤيد أميركياً بأن إيران وقوى المقاومة في وضع تفوّق استراتيجي، وفائض قوة يتيح تحويل أي تحرش «إسرائيلي» جدي إلى مبرر لمواجهة شاملة لن تكون نهايتها في صالح «إسرائيل».

مرة أخرى كما كانت الحال عليه قبل ست سنوات، لا بديل للاتفاق مع إيران إلا الاتفاق مع إيران، ومضمون الاتفاق عودة غير مشروطة عن العقوبات، على قاعدة الالتزام المتبادل بالاتفاق الأصلي من دون الرهان على متغيرات وتحوّلات، هي في غير صالح الثنائي الأميركي «الإسرائيلي».

مقالات متعلقة

إنزالات الأطلسيّ لفكّ التحالف الروسيّ الصينيّ الإيرانيّ

10 July 2021

 محمد صادق الحسينيّ

لا بدّ لأيّ محلل سياسيّ، ينتهج أسلوب البحث العلمي الموضوعي والمستند الى المنطق، ان يعود قليلاً بالذاكرة الى الوراء، كي يتمكن من تقديم تحليل موضوعيّ وتقدير موقف دقيق للمناورات البحرية الواسعة النطاق، التي تجريها القوات البحرية لدول حلف شمال الأطلسي، الى جانب قوات بحرية إسرائيلية ومن أربع دول عربية هي: مصر، المغرب، الإمارات وتونس! منذ 28/6/2021 وتُختتم اليوم 10/7/2021، خاصة أنّ المهمة، التي تتدرب هذه القوات البحرية على تنفيذها، تتمثل أساساً في:

أولا: عمليات إنزال بحرية على ارض العدو.

ثانيا: تنفيذ عمليات برية على أرض العدو. وهذا يعني في العلم العسكري القيام بعمليات الإنزال البحري لإقامة رؤوس جسور للقوات المدرّعة والمشاة الميكانيكية، التي سيتم إبرارها من سفن الإنزال، بعد نجاح تثبيت رؤوس الجسور على أرض العدو (وهي في هذه الحالة روسيا بلا أدنى شك لأنها البلد الوحيد في حوض البحر الأسود، التي تتعامل معها الولايات المتحدة وحلف الأطلسي كبلد عدو).

ثالثا: عمليات بحرية تنفذها وحدات من الضفادع البشرية، التابعة لدول حلف الأطلسي (وهي بالتأكيد عمليات زراعة ألغام بحرية في طرق تحرّكات الأساطيل الروسية المدنية والحربية في البحر الاسود، إضافة الى القيام بعمليات تخريب لمنشآت عسكرية بحرية روسية في موانئ البحر الأسود.

رابعا: التدرّب على حرب الغواصات.

خامسا: التدرّب على عمليات الدفاع الجوي وعمليات القوات الخاصة. (وهذا يعني، من الناحية العسكرية، إنزال قوات خاصة تابعة لحلفخامس الأطلسي خلف خطوط العدو وتقديم الغطاء الجوي لها لتمكينها من تنفيذ العمليات المكلفة بها من دون أن تتعرّض لنيران المقاتلات الروسية في ارض المعركة. بالاضافة الى تأمين الغطاء الجوي لعمليات الانزال البحري وللسفن الحربية الاطلسية المشاركة في العمليات ايضاً، وذلك حسب ما أعلن على الصفحة الرسمية لسلاح البحرية الأميركي، قبيل بدء المناورات.

 إذن فإن الهدف من هذه المناورات هو التدرب، وعلى مقربة شديدة من الأهداف الروسية، على عمليات عسكرية اطلسية تُشنُ على أراضي جمهورية روسيا الاتحادية، بحراً وجواً.

علماً أن خطة المناورات، التي تجري حالياً في البحر الأسود، هي نسخة طبق الأصل عن خطة عسكرية بريطانية فرنسية، جرى البدء بالتخطيط لها في شهر 12/1939 وأنجزت في شهر 1/1940، وأطلق عليها اسم: عملية الرمح – Operation Pike – وتمثلت أهداف الخطة آنذاك في:

أ) قصف كافة آبار النفط السوفياتية، في منطقة القوقاز الشمالي، خاصة في باكو وغروزني، وتدميرها تدميراً كاملاً.

ب) أسندت قيادة العمليّة لجنرال سلاح الجو البريطاني، سيدني كوتون، والذي بدأ بإعداد أول الصور الجوية لمناطق الحقول المستهدفة في شهري آذار ونيسان 3 و4/1940.

ج) بعد استكمال عمليات الاستطلاع الأخيرة للأهداف بدأت قيادة العملية، تحت إشراف وزارتي الحرب البريطانية والفرنسية، بنقل ثلاثة أسراب من الطائرات المقاتلة البريطانيّة الى الموصل، في العراق، وستة أسراب جوية فرنسيّة الى سورية. وقد ضمّت هذه الأسراب طائرات من طراز: فامرمان / ف 221 / طائرات مارتن ميري لاند ، وطائرات فيكرز . بحيث أصبح العدد الإجمالي، لطائرات القوة الجوية البريطانية الفرنسية، المكلفة بتدمير آبار النفط السوفياتية، هو 117 طائرة.

د) وفي الوقت نفسة تابعت القيادة العامة للعملية استكمال بعض التفاصيل الميدانية على أن يبدأ تنفيذ عمليات القصف الجوي لموانئ كل من: باكو / باتومي / باتو / على البحر الأسود، إضافة الى مدينة غروزني في جمهورية الشيشان، في نهاية شهر حزيران 1940.

ه) لكن قيام الجيش الألماني الهتلري بشن هجومه على فرنسا، بتاريخ 20/5/1940 واحتلالها بسرعة قياسية، وعثور فرقة الدبابات التاسعة الألمانية، بتاريخ 16/6/1940، على خطة العملية البريطانية الفرنسية، في هيئة أركان الجيش الفرنسي في ناحية La Charité – sur Loire، قد كشف العملية.

و) ومن الجدير بالذكر أن الماريشال هيرمان غويرينغ ، وهو وزير الطيران الحربي الألماني الهتلريّ، قد أكد في محكمة نورينبيرغ، التي حوكم فيها من بقي على قيد الحياة من القادة النازيين، أن قيادة الاستطلاع الاستراتيجي الألمانية كانت قد سجلت تحشيداً جوياً، بريطانياً فرنسياً، استعداداً لتنفيذ عملية السهم.

كان الهدف المعلن في خطط هيئة الأركان، من قبل لندن وباريس، لهذه العملية هو حرمان ألمانيا النازية من الموارد النفطية السوفياتية، خاصة بعد توقيع اتفاقية التعاون الاقتصادي السوفياتية الألمانية، في صيف 1939، حسب الوثائق السرية المتعلقة بهذا الموضوع والتي رفعت عنها السرية قبل فترة وجيزة.

لكن الأهداف الحقيقية من وراء ذلك كانت مختلفةً عما تضمنتة وثائق هيئة الأركان الفرنسية والبريطانية. إذ إنهما كانتا تهدفان الى البدء بتدمير موارد النفط السوفياتية تمهيداً للبدء بعمليات هجوميّة بحرية وجوية ضد أراضي الاتحاد السوفياتي، تحت حجة التعاون السوفياتي الألماني. أي ابتزاز الاتحاد السوفياتي تحت تهديد العدوان العسكري بهدف إلغاء اتفاقياته مع ألمانيا.

 وفي هذا الإطار قام السفير البريطاني في موسكو ريتشارد ستافورد كريبس ، في شهر 10/1940، بتقديم عرض لوزير الخارجية السوفياتي، مولوتوف ينص على تخلي بريطانيا عن عمليات تدمير حقول النفط السوفياتية مقابل أن يتخذ الاتحاد السوفياتي موقفاً محايداً في الحرب الألمانية البريطانية.

وهذه هي السياسة نفسها، التي تمارسها الولايات المتحدة الأميركية مستخدمة حلف الاطلسي ومجموعة من الدول العميلة لها، في ابتزاز القيادة الروسية الآن لتقديم تنازلات سياسية، سواء على الصعيد الاستراتيجي الدولي او في مواضيع إقليمية تهم الأمن القومي الروسي، كموضوع العلاقة مع إيران وسورية وغيرها من المواضيع والملفات.

إلا أن هدف واشنطن الاستراتيجي الاول، من وراء مواصلة الضغط العسكري على روسيا، من خلال التحركات العسكرية الاستفزازية، لواشنطن وحلف الاطلسي على حدود روسيا الشمالية الغربية وفي البحر الأسود، انما هو محاولة لوقف التعاون الصيني الروسي، على الصعيد الاستراتيجي الدولي، خاصة في مجال الدفاع المشترك، او ما تسميه واشنطن منع تشكل وتعمق الحلف العسكري الروسي الصيني المتنامي، الذي “يهدّد” الأمن القومي الأميركي.

وهو ما يؤكد أن سياسة الدول الاستعمارية الغربية هي السياسة العدوانية التوسعية نفسها، القائمة على الابتزاز وفرض الهيمنة، وتهديد السلم الدولي. ولكن موازين القوى الدولية الحاليّة ومنطق حركية (ديناميكية) العلاقات الدولية الحاليّة، بما في ذلك وجود محور مقاومة معادٍ للسياسة التوسعية الأميركية، ومستنداً الى دعم سياسي ودبلوماسي، وعسكري في بعض المواقع، من كل من جمهورية الصين الشعبية وروسيا الاتحادية، نقول إن كل ذلك سيفشل النسخة الجديدة من السياسة الاستعمارية الغربية، التي تجمع بين التهديد العسكري والعدوان الاقتصادي المباشر، عبر فرض العقوبات الاقتصادية والمالية على العديد من الدول وعلى رأسها الصين وروسيا وكوريا الشمالية وإيران وسورية وفنزويلا.

بعدنا طيبين قولوا الله…

The Geneva Summit: Nothingburger or Watershed?

THE SAKER • JUNE 17, 2021 

The long awaited summit between Presidents Putin and Biden has finally taken place, but was it a success? Will it change anything? The answer to this question very much depends on one’s expectations. Let’s take a closer look beginning with the context.

Context of the summit

Just about the only thing which both US and Russian observers agree on is that the state of the Russian-US relations is about as bad as can be (in my personal opinion, it is even much worse than during the Cuban Missile Crisis or any other time in the Cold War). As I have mentioned many times, I believe that the AngloZionist Empire and Russia have been at war at least since 2013. Remember Obama with his “Russian economy in “in tatters”? That was the outcome Obama promised the people of the USA (Quick factcheck: the company Deloitte recently polled the CEOs of major Russian corporations and only 4% of them felt “pessimistic” about their financial perspectives as “negative”, 40% replied “same as before” and 56% replied “optimistic”). Of course, this was was not a conventional war, it was about 80% informational, 15% economic and only 5% kinetic. This, however, does not change the fact that this war was an existential war for both sides, one in which only one side could prevail while the other would, if not quite disappear, then at least totally lose its superpower status. This is a civilizational war, which pitted western and Russian civilizational (cultural, social and even religious) models against each other roughly along the following lines:

The US/Anglo-Zionist worldview: we are the “city upon a hill”, the beacon of light and hope for mankind. Our “manifest destiny” is to “expand the area of freedom” worldwide. We have the best armed forces in history, the strongest economy, the best everything. We are the “leaders of the free world” whose “responsibility” is to lead the world. This is not imperialism, this is the “duty” and “responsibility” placed upon us by history. Our values are universal values and must be universally accepted by all. Those refusing to join our model are authoritarian “rogue states”. Russia must accept that because she lost the Cold War and that western values have prevailed. Those who refuse to accept this are “revanchists” who want to overturn the outcome of the Cold War and rebuild the Soviet Union. The US had to expand NATO to the East to protect Europe from “Russian aggression”. Now “America” is back and, with our allies and friends, we will create a “rules based” international order which we will benevolently enforce to the immense gratitude of all of mankind.

Russian worldview:

Russia rejects any form of imperialism, for herself and for others. Russia wants a multilateral world order, based on international law and the full sovereignty of nations. Each nation should have the right to pursue its own cultural, economic, spiritual and civilizational model without being threatened, sanctioned, bombed, subverted or invaded. Russia rejects the so-called “western values” (turbocapitalism, imperialism, wokeness, multiculturalism, militant atheism, critical race theory, gender fluidity, etc.). The US is welcome to fly homo-flags on its embassies, but it has no business telling others how to live. In fact, the US has to accept two closely related realities: first, the US does not have the means to impose its ideology on the rest of the planet and, second, the rest of the planet sees the total hypocrisy of a country claiming to stand for values which itself gets to violate as much as it wants. Any comparisons are immediately dismissed with the words “but this is completely different!!!”.

Again, Russia agrees that the US is welcome to live in a post-truth, post-reality, delusion if it wants, but she also believes, and says so, that the West has no right to try to impose its pretend-values on others, especially when it constantly violates them all when convenient.

The core issue

The core belief underlying these very different worldview is extremely simple: the US sees itself as exceptional and, therefore, endowed with special rights and sees Russia as a much inferior interlocutor which needs to accept the US hegemony upon the world. In sharp contrast, Russia denies the USA any special status and demands that the US leaders accept Russia as an equal interlocutor before any meaningful dialog or cooperation could even be discussed.

I think that it would be fair to say that roughly between 2013 and 2020 both countries exerted immense efforts in a kind of a massive arms wrestling match to show that it, and not the other guy, would prevail.

For a very short while, Trump tried to get some kind of dialog going, but he was quickly and completely neutered by the Neocons and the messianic imperialists in his own camp (I think of Pompeo for example) and his efforts, however sincere, yielded absolutely nothing: Trump was not able to put an end to the war started by Obama.

Then came Biden and, at first, things looked hopeless. Seeing the massive failure of the first US-China meeting in Alaska, one could have been excused to expect a similar, or even worse, outcome from any meetings between Biden and Putin. Many (on both sides) believed that such a meeting was pointless at best since the US had painted itself into a zero-sum corner in which anything short of an exchange of insults would be seen by the US media (and the public opinion it shapes) as a “defeat”, “surrender” and possibly even “treason” by Biden. That is definitely the message conveyed by much of the US media, including Fox.

 


I want to express my total disgust with US Republicans who, for four years, were literally hounded by the US media for Trump’s alleged “caving in” to Putin or even for being a “Manchurian candidate” put in power by “Putin”. Now the Republicans are using the exact same language accusing Biden of “weakness” and for “caving in” to Putin. Truly, the Dems and the GOP are like Coke and Pepsi: different labels, same product. Worse, both the Dems and the GOP place their petty interests above the well-being of the United States and its people. I consider both parties traitors to the US and its people.


What actually happened

In spite of all the nay-sayers (on both sides!), Putin and Biden did meet. True, the meeting did not yield any spectacular results, but it would be wrong to conclude that nothing of importance happened.

First, the tone of the Biden administration towards Russia and Putin did change, remarkably so, especially after Biden’s infamous “uhu, he is a killer”. Some sanctions were lifted, the US basically gave up on trying to prevent North Stream 2 (NS2) from being completed, and a number of small steps were achieved, including:

  • An agreement to discuss cybersecurity on an expert level (something the Russians had been demanding for years, but which the USA rejected out of hand).
  • joint declaration strategic stability (more about that below)
  • An agreement to discuss outstanding issues on an expert level
  • A return of both US and Russian ambassadors to their former positions
  • A discussion on a possible prisoner swap
  • A discussion on possible future arms control agreements

Also of interest are the points which were mentioned in passing, mostly by the US side, but which were clearly not focused on. These include:

  • The Ukraine and Belarus
  • Human Rights (aka “Navalyi” & Co.)
  • Russian alleged interference in western elections
  • Russian alleged covert operations against the US
  • The alleged Russian threat to the EU or in the Arctic
  • Russian ties to China and Iran

That is the official picture. But let’s be a little more wise about this: the US and Russian delegations (about 400 people each) included some very high ranking officials, including the Russian Chief of General Staff. Neither side would have bothered with such a massive undertaking only for the purpose of exchanging threats, ultimatums or insults. And such summits are never organized unless the parties have at least a reasonable prospect of some kind of understanding (this is why the return of the ambassadors was announced before the summit!).

So what really happened here?

To answer that question, we first need to look at what did not happen.

First, it is quite clear that the language/tone of the Biden administration has dramatically changed. This was immediately noticed by the (mentally infantile) US media which attacked Biden in his press conference for not putting enough pressure on Putin. Oh sure, Biden did pay lip service to the usual russophobic nonsense the US media seems to be forever stuck on, but it is quite clear what the US legacy ziomedia did not get what it wanted: they wanted Biden to “unite the West behind the USA” and then “tell” Putin to “behave” and admit something – anything – about the Russian “wrongdoings”. Putin gave them absolutely and exactly nothing. If anything, we could say that he held up a mirror to Uncle Shmuel and that Uncle Shmuel had nothing to say to that.

Second, and for the first time in a very long while, the US did not engage in any threats or ultimatums. If anything, it was quite amazing to see Biden getting angry at an imbecile journo from CNN (I think) who asked Biden why he expected Putin to “change his behavior” when the latter admitted no wrongs. Later Biden apologized, but he was clearly frustrated with the level of imbecility of the US press media.

 


The US media truly showed its true face during both press conferences. With Putin, they asked stupid, leading questions, based on their own delusional assumptions, and Putin easily swatted down these questions by pointing out at undeniable and well-known facts. The Biden press conference was, as usual, completely sanitized with a prepared list of reporters and questions, and with no Russian journalists allowed (pluralism, free media or free speech anybody?!). The infantilized US public did not think much about this, but in the rest of the world – in Zone B if you wish – people immediately noticed the startling difference between the two leaders and between the two press conferences. It will be awfully hard for the US to speak of “freedom of speech” when its President cannot be trusted to talk to his counterpart alone (Bliken never left his side, just like Dick Cheney did for Bush Jr. or Don Regan did for Reagan in his latter years) and cannot take unscripted questions from the (supposedly) “free” media. The US media clearly wanted Biden to go to Geneva, and tell Putin “now you submit or else…” and only the completely ignorant and infantilized US public could actually take that nonsense seriously. When that did not happen, they turned on Biden and accused him of weakness for “making no threats”!


Third, and crucially, by NOT discussing silly issues but by focusing on the real, important, topics underlying the US-Russian relations, Biden de-facto admitted two things:

  1. The US policy towards Russia since 2013 has failed and
  2. Russia is an equal partner to the USA who cannot be bullied, threatened or attacked

So much for “talking to the Russians from a position of force” which ALL the western leaders mantrically promised us. In sharp contrast, the Kremlin did not have to make any threats: the recent military exercises, which truly freaked out NATO and the EU, made any posturing by Russia quite unnecessary.

I am not so naive as to believe that any of this is set in stone.

First, we know that US politicians typically meet with their Russian counterparts and say “A” only to later come back home, cave in to the war lobby, and then declare “non-A”. Trump did that, as did Kerry and many others. US diplomats are mostly ignorant political appointees and/or warmongering Neocons who simply are not intellectually equipped to deal with their Russian counterparts (James Baker was probably the last truly sophisticated US Secretary of State). Second, we all understand that Biden is really “Biden” (the man himself is just a front, real decisions are taken by the collective “Biden”), which means that while he and even Bliken can agree on something, but that by no means implies that they will stand by what they agreed on. Finally, is is objectively really hard to undo that which was done: eight years of self-defeating delusions about itself and the rest of the world have done immense damage to the United States and it would take something pretty close to a miracle to now reverse a course which at least two US administrations have so foolishly insisted on pursuing.

Yet, what Biden did and said was quite clearly very deliberate and prepared. This is not the case of a senile President losing his focus and just spewing (defeatist) nonsense. Therefore, we must conclude that there are also those in the current US (real) power configuration who decided that Biden must follow a new, different, course or, at the very least, change rhetoric. I don’t know who/what this segment of the US power configuration is, but I submit that something has happened which forced at least a part of the US ruling class to decide that Obama’s war on Russia had failed and that a different approach was needed. At least that is the optimistic view.

The pessimistic view would suggest that, just like a boxer who has thrown so many punches that he now needs to catch his breath, the leaders of the Empire just needed a short time break, to “catch their breath”, before resuming the endless cycle of petty attacks, threats and accusations against Russia.

Time will show which group is right. My money is on the pessimists (as usual).

What we can say now is this: the period 2013-2021 saw a huge decline in US power abroad and the explosion of an equally huge internal political and social crises which are still catastrophically hurting the United States (Obama and Trump were truly the weakest and worst Presidents in US history). In sharp contrast, the same 2013-2021 years saw a huge rise in Russian military, political, economic and social power. Denying this reality forever is simply not an option for the USA (even if the US media never reports about this). It appears that the Biden Administration decided to keep up the same infantile language as its predecessors for internal consumption, but decided that a change of attitude on the international front was urgently needed, if only in order to avoid taking on both Russia and China (and, possibly, Iran) at the same time. History also shows that even just talking to Russia from a presumed “position of strength” was useless at best and suicidal at worst. The history of western imperialism in China offers a more ambiguous image, but the current revival of Chinese power under Xi also suggests that the Chinese won’t cave in to their former colonial masters.

What about China?

If China was mentioned at all, it is not official. The Kremlin had already indicated in numerous statements that trying to turn China and Russia against each other was not a realistic option, so on the Russian side there were no expectations of anything changing on that issue. Besides, while China has a lot to offer Russia, the USA has literally absolutely nothing Russia would want or need. The same goes for Iran, albeit at a lesser degree. There are those in the US ruling class who believe that China is a much more dangerous enemy for the AngloZionist Empire than Russia and it is possible that these are the interests which pushed Biden into a more realistic stance. The truth is that anybody who knows anything about the Sino-Russian relationship (which the Chinese now officially call the “strategic comprehensive partnership of coordination for the new era”) understands that these two countries vitally need each other. Did the US diplomats really hope that they could sway Russia to the US side? Probably not. So, at most, what they needed was a short time break or, at least, some kind of temporary stabilization of the “Russian front”.

What about the Europeans?

The Europeans are stuck in some kind of political no man’s land: some want a confrontation at all cost (3B+PU), especially since the EU stopped funding them, while others are clearly fed-up (Germany, France, Italy, etc.) with the current situation. They all realize that something has just changed, but they appear unsure as to what, why and how. And how shall the EU now treat Biden? First, while hating Trump was seen as “politically correct” by the EU ruling classes, hating Biden is quite unthinkable. Second, while Biden did “consult” with the G7 and NATO, these “consultations” yielded no meaningful result. Unlike the summit with Putin, these “preparatory summits” were just nice PR, a feel-good, “rah-rah, we are all united” kind of symbolic event. Think of it as an imperial king visiting his colonies: fun but not very important. But meeting the leader of a “gas station masquerading as a country” required the presence of 400 or so top US officials and months of preparations. Finally, the fact that “Biden” had to yield to Germany on NS2 shows that the grip of Uncle Shmuel on Germany is weakening, “another writing on the wall” which “Biden” apparently read.

So who won?

At this point I don’t think that we can say that anybody won. In fact, the existential war opposing the AngloZionist Empire to Russia is not over. At most, this will be a temporary ceasefire allowing Uncle Shmuel to catch his breath. But I think that we can also fairly conclude that Obama’s war on Russia has failed and that the Biden Administration is more in touch with reality than Obama ever was. How long this new realism will last is anybody’s guess. I don’t think we should put much stock in the idea that now a new era of peace or collaboration has begun. But maybe, just maybe, the USA will stop playing what I call a “game of nuclear chicken” with a superpower which is at least a full decade ahead in military (and civilian!) nuclear technology and delivery vehicles and a superpower which is now working as a binomial with another nuclear superpower, China.

Conclusion: the US-Russian Joint Statement on Strategic Stability

This is the full text of the US-Russian Joint Statement on Strategic Stability I mentioned above: (emphasis added)

We, President of the United States of America Joseph R. Biden and President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, note the United States and Russia have demonstrated that, even in periods of tension, they are able to make progress on our shared goals of ensuring predictability in the strategic sphere, reducing the risk of armed conflicts and the threat of nuclear war. The recent extension of the New START Treaty exemplifies our commitment to nuclear arms control. Today, we reaffirm the principle that a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought. Consistent with these goals, the United States and Russia will embark together on an integrated bilateral Strategic Stability Dialogue in the near future that will be deliberate and robust. Through this Dialogue, we seek to lay the groundwork for future arms control and risk reduction measures.

The language here is very important: it is the repudiation of a major US delusion which began with Ronald Regan’s “Star Wars” and which was shared by each following President: the notion that the US can win a nuclear war against Russia by technologically or economically defeating Russia. The website “Defense One” (which is hardly a “Russian disinformation outlet”) had this to say about this decades long illusion:

Biden can correct the mistakes of the past. The future of missile defense will be thoroughly studied as part of a broader nuclear posture/deterrence review that will be started in the few weeks. Mindful that less expensive offensive weapons can always be developed to overwhelm, sabotage, or destroy any conceivable defensive system, his administration can return to diplomacy, seek verifiable mutual reductions, prevent the development of new threats, and address rising concerns such as the weaponization of space and cyber threats. That would allow the transfer of funds from the weapons that don’t work to programs that will rebuild and add to America’s security.

If this is really what is happening (and we need to wait before coming to any hasty conclusions!) then this is good news. Good news for Russia which has nothing to gain from any “reloaded Cold War” with the West, good news for the Europeans which need to recover at least a modicum of agency, good news for the USA, which is bled dry and is quickly becoming a underdeveloped third world country, and good news for the entire planet which would be devastated by any nuclear war between any combination of superpowers. If this is really what happened.

For the time being, the “crazies in the basement” are still every bit as crazy as before (see here and here for a few good examples). So are the woke-freaks (see here and here). So is the homo-lobby (see here and here). They all hate Russia and Putin with a passion, and they ain’t going away anytime soon. Besides, it is not like “Biden” will do anything other than give them all a standing ovation, full support and millions of dollars to their cause: these “minorities” (more accurately: this coalition of minorities) are the ideological foundation for Biden’s entire presidency, they brought him to power and he cannot renounce them.

How long brainwashed doubleplusgoodthinking sheep will continue to “take a knee” against “systemic racism” is anybody’s guess, however.

On the external front, the US cannot give up its messianic ideology and claims of exceptionalism. This would be truly unthinkable for the vast majority of US Americans. This does not change the fact that, as I have written many times, the AngloZionist Empire and the current US political system are neither sustainable, nor reformable. Besides, empires are almost impossible to reform. That is why they usually end up collapsing. And when they do, they often try to lash out at those they blame for their own failures. This is exactly what has been going on since 2013 and this will not and, in fact, cannot change until the final – and inevitable – collapse.

There will be no friendship or even partnership between the USA and Russia for as long as the USA will continue to serve as the latest host for the parasitic AngloZionist Empire. Аs the spokesman for Putin, Peskov, just declared “So far, there are no reasons to exclude the United States from the list of unfriendly countries“.

Finally, did Putin “win”?

I would answer both yes and no. Yes, he did win in the sense that his strategy of dealing with an Empire on the warpath against Russia has been proven extremely effective. All the nay-sayers (liberal or neo-Marxists) have been accusing Putin of caving in to pretty much everything everywhere, yet it is the USA which had to eat crow, drop all its preconditions and ask for a summit. None of the many propaganda attacks against Russia (MH17, Skipal, chem weapons, Belarus, the Karabakh war, Navalnyi, doping, sports and flags, the seizure of Russian diplomatic offices, the kidnapping of Russian citizens, economic and political sanctions, threats, sabre-rattling at the borders, etc. etc. etc.) have worked or even yielded any meaningful results. In that sense, yes, Putin did win. But that existential war is not over, not for the US, not for Russia and neither it is over for China, Iran and any other country wanting true sovereignty.

In that sense, what happened in Geneva is not the beginning of the end (primarily because that beginning of the end has already long taken place, even if it was never reported in Zone A), but it is definitely a chance to change some dynamics on the international scene. The infinite arrogance of the likes of Trump and Pompeo has been replaced by a much more cautious and realistic approach, at least in superpower relations. But Putin/Russia will only have truly won once the US accepts the reality that the Empire is dead and that the USA, like all ex-empires, must now become a “normal” country (like all former empires had to). Sounds easy, but this is almost infinitely hard when imperialism is what you were born, raised, educated and conditioned to live with and when you sincerely believe that your brand of imperialism is somehow benevolent, even altruistic. Russia/Putin will only have truly won once the last empire in history finally gives way to a civilized international world order. Until then, the struggle of Russia – and all the other members of the resistance against the Empire – will continue.

Between the lines of the Biden-Putin summit

Between the lines of the Biden-Putin summit

June 17, 2021

Biden hinted US wants Russia ‘back in the fold’ but Putin won’t being leaving China’s embrace any time soon

By Pepe Escobar with permission and first posted at AsiaTimes

Let’s start with the written word.

In Geneva, the US and Russia issued a joint statement where we reaffirm the principle that a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought.”

Assorted Dr. Strangeloves will cringe – but at least the world has it in writing, and may breathe a sigh of relief with this breakthrough of sorts. That doesn’t mean that a “non-agreement capable” US industrial-military complex will abide.

Moscow and Washington also committed to engage in an “integrated bilateral Strategic Stability Dialogue in the near future that will be deliberate and robust.” The devil in the details is in which “near future” the dialogue will progress.

A first step is that ambassadors are returning to both capitals. Putin confirmed that the Russian Foreign Ministry and the State Department will “start consultations” following the new START-3 treaty extension for five years.

Equally important was the actual Rosebud in Geneva: the Minsk protocol. That was one of the key drivers for the White House to actually request the summit to the Kremlin – and not the other way around.

The US establishment was shaken by the lightning-flash military buildup in Russian territory contiguous to Donbas – which was a response to Kiev provocations (Putin: “We conduct exercises on our territory, but we do not conduct exercises dragging equipment and weapons to the US border”).

The message was duly received. There seems to be a change of posture by the US on Ukraine – implying the Minsk protocol is back.

But that can all be – once again – shadow play. Biden said,

“We agreed to pursue diplomacy related to the Minsk agreement.”

To “pursue diplomacy” not necessarily means strictly abiding by a deal already endorsed by the UN Security Council which is being disrespected by Kiev non-stop. But at least it implies diplomacy.

A benign reading would reveal that some red lines are finally being understood. Putin did allude to it: “In general, it is clear to us what our US partners talk about, and they do understand what we say, when it comes to the ‘red lines.’ But I should say frankly that we have not gone as far as placing the emphases in detail and distribute and share something.”

So no detail – at least not yet.

Giving away the game

Talking before boarding Air Force One out of Geneva, a relaxed Joe Biden seems to have given away the game – in a trademark self-deluded way.

He said, “Russia is in a very, very difficult spot right now… They are being squeezed by China. They want desperately to remain a major power.”

This reveals a curious mix between zero knowledge about the complex, always evolving Russia-China comprehensive strategic partnership and outright wishful thinking (“squeezed by China”, “desperate to remain a major power”).

Russia is a de facto major power. Yet Putin’s vision of complete Russian sovereignty can only flourish in a true multipolar world coordinated by a Concert of Sovereigns: a realpolitik-based Balance of Power.

That’s in sharp contrast to the unipolarity privileged by the Hegemon, whose establishment considers any political player calling for sovereignty and multipolarity as a sworn enemy.

This cognitive dissonance certainly was not removed by what Putin, Biden and their extended teams discussed at Villa La Grange.

It’s quite enlightening to revive the arc from Anchorage to Geneva – which I have been chronicling for Asia Times for the past three months. In Alaska, China was hurled into a dingy environment and received with insults at the diplomatic table – responded in kind by the formidable Yang Jiechi. Compare it with the Hollywood-style ceremonial in Geneva.

The difference in treatment offered to China and Russia once again gives away the game.

US ruling elites are totally paralyzed by the Russia-China strategic partnership. But their ultimate nightmare is that Berlin will understand that once again they are being used as cannon fodder – which they are as it’s been clearly visible throughout the Nord Stream 2 saga.

That might eventually propel Berlin into the ultimate Eurasian alliance with Russia-China. The recently signed Atlantic Charter signals that the ideal scenario for the Anglo-Americans – shades of WWII – is to have Germany and Russia as irreconcilable opposites.

So the main American goal in the somewhat quirky Putin-Biden photo op (Putin smirk meets Biden looking into the distance) was to trick Putin into thinking Washington wants Russia “back into the fold”, moving Moscow away from Beijing and avoiding a triple alliance with Berlin.

What about regional stability?

There were no substantial leaks from Geneva – at least not yet. We don’t know whether Lavrov and Blinken actually did much of the talking when only the four of them – plus translators – were in the library room.

At the extended meeting, notorious Maidan cookie distributor Victoria ‘F**k the EU’ Nuland had a seat on the table. That might imply that even if US-Russia agree on nuclear stability, regional stability remains largely off the table (Putin: “What is stable in supporting a coup in Ukraine?”)

Biden vaguely referred to US and Russia possibly working together on humanitarian aid to Syria. That was code for Idlib – where NATO’s Turkey is actively supporting jihadis of the al-Nusra kind. Not a word on illegal American occupation of Syrian territory – complete with oil smuggling, and the fact that the real humanitarian crisis in Syria is a direct result of US sanctions.

None of this was asked in both pressers. A passing word on Iran, another passing word on Afghanistan, not even a mention of Gaza.

Putin, in full command of the facts and insisting on logic, was clearly accommodating, emphasizing “no hostility” and “a willingness to understand each other”. Biden, to his credit, said disagreements were not dealt with in a “hyperbolic atmosphere” and his “agenda” is not directed against Russia.

Putin went into extreme detail explaining how Russia is “restoring lost infrastructure” in the Arctic. He’s “deeply convinced” the US and Russia should cooperate in the Arctic.

On cybersecurity, he was adamant that Moscow provided all information on US requests about cyber attacks, but never receives answers from the Americans. He emphasized most cyber attacks originate in the US.

On human rights: “Guantanamo is still working, does not comply with any international law”. And “torture was used in American prisons, including in Europe.”

Very important: they did touch upon, “casually”, the vaccine wars, and the “possibility” was evoked of mutual recognition of vaccines.

For the record: US mainstream media was invited for Putin’s presser – and felt free to lodge accusatory “questions” faithful to the “rogue Kremlin behavior” script while no Russian media whatsoever was allowed on Biden’s presser.

In a nutshell: applying Kissinger’s Divide and Rule to put a spanner in the Russia-China works was D.O.A. when you’re dealing with ultra-savvy players such as Putin and Lavrov.

Putin, in his presser, said, “I have no illusions, and there can be no illusions”. Later, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov was asked if Geneva would lead to the US being removed from Russia’s Unfriendly Nations list: “No…there are no grounds yet.”

Still, there are glimmers of hope. Stranger geopolitical things have happened. If warmongers are sidelined, 2021 might even end up as The Year of Strategic Stability.

«الشرق الأوسط الإسلاميّ» مركز ثقل العالم بين بكين وطهران…The “Islamic Middle East” is the center of the world’s gravity between Beijing and Tehran…

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

«الشرق الأوسط الإسلاميّ» مركز ثقل العالم بين بكين وطهران

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 محمد صادق الحسيني

كلّ المؤشرات والقرائن والوقائع الميدانيّة على أكثر من صعيد إقليمي ودولي باتت تؤكد انعدام الرؤية الاستراتيجية لدى الدولة التي كانت يوماً الأعظم في العالم وهي الولايات المتحدة الأميركية…!

بايدن يطلب اللقاء مع بوتين على عجل لوقف تدهور العلاقات بين بلديهما، وإجراء تهدئة تمنع تقدم الحليفين الاستراتيجيبن الصين وروسيا على حساب الدولة التي تهشّمت صورتها في أكثر من ساحة دولية رغم ظاهرها المخادع كدولة عظمى!

محاولة بايدن هذه لا تحمل أيّ معالم صفقة او اتفاقيات بين البلدين، بل تهدف اساساً الى منع موسكو من توظيف كل من الصين والهند وايران كمجال حيوي لتنشيط المقدرات الروسية الهائلة في هذه البلدان بديلاً عن أوروبا التي تحاول واشنطن إغلاقها بوجه موسكو قدر الإمكان…

وفي سياق مثل هذه الأولوية الاستراتيجية فقط يمكن فهم محاولات واشنطن المتعثرة لكنها المصرّة على وقف تهوّرات حليفيها التاريخيين جنوب وغرب إيران، ايّ الكيانين السعودي و»الإسرائيلي»!

وقف حرب اليمن حتى على سبيل الخدعة والمناورة تحتاج اليها واشنطن حتى تتمكن من وقف التمدّد الإيراني الذي يزداد اندفاعه مع كلّ يوم يمرّ على تخبّط إدارة محمد بن سلمان الغارقة في مستنقع حرب اليمن الآسن والذي لم يعد يجلب للرياض سوى سرعة أفول القبيلة السعودية الحاكمة، وإنْ على مراحل…

هكذا تفهم أيضاً خطوات حكومة بايدن التي تتخلّى شيئاً فشيئاً عن تهوّرات نتن ياهو وتحاول استبداله بالثنائي بينيت – ليبيد الأميركيّي النزعة والجنسية الثانية…

ثمّة رعب خفي يحكم كلّ تصرفات إدارة بايدن من أمر تعتبره ربما نهاية التاريخ الأميركي الحقيقية وليست نهاية تاريخ فوكوياما الشهيرة.

فمركز ثقل العالم يُسرع في الانتقال من الغرب الى الشرق وكلّ العلائم في المعلوماتية والتقنيات وحروب الجيل الخامس والاقتصاد والثقافة والفنون وعالم ما بعد الدولار تفيد بأنّ الغرب لم يعد مركز العالم ولا حتى النموذج المحبّب أو الجاذب لغالبية سكان الكرة الأرضية كما كان في القرن الماضي.

إنّ القرن الذي أنهينا عشريّتين منه بات قرن الصين وروسيا وإيران بامتياز، وكلّ قوى الحرية والتمرّد على الهيمنة الغربية في العالم لا سيما الهيمنة الأميركية منها باتت ترنو لرؤية عالم ما بعد أميركا.

حتى ربيبة أميركا الصهيونية في حرب الـ 11 يوماً الأخيرة على فلسطين – سيف القدس – لم تتمكّن من تحقيق ولو صورة نصر بل على العكس تماماً، 4 أيام متتالية تقوم نحو 200 طائرة عسكرية إسرائيلية (ايّ نحو ثلثي الطيران الحربي) بقصف شريط لا يتجاوز نحو 30 كلم من البحر غرباً حتى الشجاعية شرقاً، ولا نتيجة تذكر سوى تهديم أبنية وقتل أطفال ونساء وفشل عسكري تامّ، وانقلاب الصورة لدى الرأي العام حتى الغربي ضدّ تل أبيب ووضعها في صورة قاتلة المدنيين ولا غير…

كلّ هذا من علامات جغرافيا آخر الزمان وانحطاط القوة الغربية وضياع الرؤية لدى الأميركي الذي ظنّ يوماً انه سيد العالم، فإذا به يكتشف انه بات محاطاً بقوى تفوقه بكلّ شيء تقريباً إلا القتل والمخاتلة والخديعة طبعاً!

حتى الاتفاق النووي وليالي الأنس في فيبنا باتت سراباً في سراب بالنسبة للأميركي فلا هو قادر على إعادة إحياء الاتفاق كما يريد ولا هو قادر على إعادة إيران الى المربع الذي يرغب…

إيران الجديدة القادمة بسرعة خلال الأشهر الثلاثة المقبلة لم تعد أصلاً بحاجة الى إحياء الاتفاق النووي، بعد أن دخل في دور المحاق داخلياً في زمن انتخابات مصيرية ستنقل إيران مباشرة الى نادي الدول العظمى من دون حتى رفع العقوبات…

تذكروا ماذا قال الإمام السيد علي الخامنئي في أكثر من خطاب:

إنّ مفتاح اقتصاد إيران ليس في لوزان ولا جنيف ولا نيويورك… إنه في داخل إيران…

جاء الوقت لتتمّ ترجمة هذا الشعار على يد الرباعي (رئيسي – جليلي – زاكاني – قاضي زاده هاشمي)، في إطار حكومة شبابية ثورية مبدئية هي أيضاً جزء من تحالف «شرق أوسطي إسلامي» يقف خلفه سور الصين العظيم وسيف القيصر الروسي.

ووجهته القدس دائماً وأبداً…

في مثل هذه الأجواء والفضاءات يمكن فهم ما تفضّل به القائد التاريخيّ المشرقيّ الشجاع سماحة السيد حسن نصر الله في ثلاثينية المنار لتحرير فلسطين عندما قال :

استيراد البنزين والمازوت والفيول من الجمهورية الإسلامية في إيران من قبل حزب الله مباشرة أو شركات خاصة تابعة هو خيار سياسي واقتصادي واجتماعي للأكثرية اللبنانية التي تعاني المذلة لأنّ بعض السياسيين يؤثرون رضى الأميركي على مصلحة المواطنين، والشروع بهذا الخيار سيؤدّي إلى جهود أميركية علنية لمنع وصول البواخر، وبالتالي سيفضح كلّ الدعاية السخيفة والكاذبة التي تقول إنّ أميركا تقف إلى جانب الشعب اللبناني، ولذلك قد يؤدي التهديد وحده إلى حلّ المشكلة ولو بشكل جزئي…

ولكن يبقى خيار الاتجاه الفعلي إلى الشرق هو الحلّ الجذري لكلّ مشكلات دول وقوى التحرر العربية والإسلامية من جبال الأطلس الكبير غرباً الى سور الصين العظيم شرقاً…

قد نرى تقلب وجهك في السماء فلنولينك قبلة ترضاها.

بعدنا طيّبين قولوا الله…


The “Islamic Middle East” is the center of the world’s gravity between Beijing and Tehran…

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Mohamed Sadek Al , Husseini

All indicators, evidence and facts on the ground on more than one regional and international level now confirm the lack of strategic vision of the country that was once the greatest in the world, the United States of America…

Biden urgently requests a meeting with Putin to stop the deterioration of relations between their two countries, and to conduct a calm that prevents the progress of the two strategic allies, China and Russia, at the expense of the country, whose image has been shattered in more than one international arena, despite its deceptive appearance as a superpower!

Biden’s attempt does not bear any features of a deal or agreements between the two countries, but rather aims mainly to prevent Moscow from employing China, India and Iran as a vital area to stimulate Russia’s enormous capabilities in these countries as an alternative to Europe, which Washington is trying to close to Moscow as much as possible…

It is only in the context of such a strategic priority that it is possible to understand Washington’s faltering attempts, but it is determined to stop the recklessness of its two historical allies, south and west of Iran, that is, the Saudi and “Israeli” entities!

Stopping the Yemen war, even as a trick and maneuver, is needed by Washington in order to be able to stop the Iranian expansion, which is getting more and more motivated with each passing day, as the Mohammed bin Salman administration floundered in the bitter quagmire of the Yemen war, which no longer brings Riyadh only the speed of the demise of the ruling Saudi tribe, albeit in stages…

This is also how to understand the steps of the Biden administration, which is gradually abandoning Netanyahu’s stinking recklessness and trying to replace him with Bennett-Lapid American duo of American Behavior and second nationality.

There is a hidden horror governing all the actions of the Biden administration from something it considers perhaps the true end of American history, not the end of Fukuyama’s history.

The center of weight of the world is accelerating the transition from west to east and all the signs in informatics, technology, 5G wars, economy, culture, the arts and the post-dollar world indicate that the West is no longer the center of the world, nor is it even the beloved or attractive model of the majority of the earth’s population as it was in the last century.

The century from which we have finished is the century of China, Russia and Iran with distinction, and all the forces of freedom and rebellion against Western hegemony in the world, particularly American hegemony, are now looking forward to seeing the post-American world.

Even the Zionist America’s 11-day war on Palestine , the Sword of Jerusalem, has not been able to achieve even a victory image, quite the contrary, four consecutive days in which some 200 Israeli military aircraft (about two-thirds of the military aviation) bomb a strip not more than 30 km from the sea west to Shujaiya to the east, and the result is little but the destruction of buildings and the killing of children and women and a complete military failure, and the reversal of the image in public opinion even western against Tel Aviv and putting it in the form of a deadly civilian and nothing else…

All this is a sign of the geography of the end of time, the decline of Western power and the loss of vision of the American, who once thought he was the master of the world, so he discovers that he is surrounded by forces that surpass him with almost everything but killing, imagination and deception of course!

Even the nuclear deal and the nights of the people of Our Country have become a mirage for the American, he is not able to revive the agreement as he wants and he is not able to return Iran to the square he wants…

The new Iran coming quickly over the next three months no longer needs to revive the nuclear deal, after it entered the role of internal catch-up in the time of crucial elections will move Iran directly to the club of the great powers without even lifting sanctions…

Remember what Imam Ali Khamenei said in more than one speech: The key to Iran’s economy is not in Lausanne, Geneva, nor New York… It is inside Iran…

The time has come for this slogan to be translated by the Quartet (Main – Jalili- Zakani – Qazizadeh Hashemi), within the framework of an initial revolutionary youth government that is also part of the “Middle Eastern Islamic” alliance behind which the Great Wall and the Sword of the Russian Tsarstand.

Jerusalem is always and never directed…

In such an atmosphere and space, it is possible to understand what the courageous, levantine historical leader, His Eminence Hassan Nasrallah, preferred in the 1930s to liberate Palestine when he said:

The import of gasoline, gasoline and fuel from the Islamic Republic of Iran directly by Hezbollah or private subsidiaries is a political, economic and social choice for the lebanese majority, which suffers humiliation because some politicians influence the satisfaction of the American on the interest of the citizens, and initiating this option will lead to public U.S. efforts to prevent the arrival of ships, and therefore will expose all the silly and false propaganda that says that America stands with the Lebanese people, so the threat alone may solve the problem even partially…

But the option of the actual direction to the east remains the radical solution to all the problems of arab and Islamic liberation countries and forces from the Great Atlas Mountains to the Great Wall to the east…

We may see your face flip in the sky.

we are still alive, say god

Iran & Russia set to sign comprehensive strategic agreement – Al Mayadeen TV report

April 16, 2021

Original link: http://middleeastobserver.net/iran-russia-set-to-sign-comprehensive-strategic-agreement-tv-report/

Video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1B6J1X8sjsk

Description: According to a recent Al Mayadeen TV report, the purpose behind Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s recent visit to Tehran was to pave the way for the signing of a comprehensive strategic cooperation agreement between his country and Iran.This comes after Iran and China signed a 25-year comprehensive strategic cooperation agreement of their own late last month.

Source: Al Mayadeen TV (YouTube) : Date: April 13, 2021(Please help MEO keep producing independent translations for you by contributing a sustainable monthly amount https://www.patreon.com/MiddleEastObserver?fan_landing=true)

Transcript :

Reporter:

Sergey Lavrov is in Tehran. Iranians see the visit of the Russian foreign minister as important both in timing and content. The two parties signed two MOUs in preparation for the signing of a comprehensive strategic cooperation agreement similar to (Iran’s recent) agreement with China. This significant development in the relations between the two countries is accompanied by similar political stances in many areas.

Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iranian Foreign Minister: 

The United States must understand that (imposing) sanctions is not the (right) approach for dealing with Iran. In addition, the European Union has proven, in its submission to the extremists in the US and the Zionist entity, that it no longer has a place in the international community.

Reporter:

In the same manner, the Russian guest condemned the policies of the US and Europe as well.

Sergey Lavrov, Russian Foreign Minister: 

We condemn any attempt to disrupt the nuclear negotiations, and we demand that Washington implements the nuclear agreement in full. We are surprised by the European Union’s decision to impose sanctions on some Iranian officials. We consider this a mistake worse than a crime, (a mistake) deliberately committed in the midst of the negotiations in Vienna.

Reporter:

The sudden European escalation that coincides with the Natanz incident may cast a shadow over the second round of the Vienna meetings, and cause tensions on multiple levels.

Iran realizes that it is difficult to cope with the accumulated crises, whether regarding its nuclear program and economic sanctions, or its (troubled) relations with the West and its conflict with Israel. However, (Iran) also realizes that its ties with Russia and China have become stronger than ever before and that this is sufficient to reduce American and European pressures placed upon it.

Ahmad Al-Bahrani – Tehran – Al-Mayadeen

To read transcript: http://middleeastobserver.net/iran-russia-set-to-sign-comprehensive-strategic-agreement-tv-report/

Related Posts:

Russia ‘would really not want’ Cold War 2.0

Russia ‘would really not want’ Cold War 2.0

April 09, 2021

The Triple Yoda, Nikolai Patrushev, hopes cooler heads can avoid sanctions such as the SWIFT ‘nuclear option’

By Pepe Escobar posted with permission and first posted at Asia Times

The Beltway was always fond of describing the late Andrew Marshall – who identified emerging or future threats for the Pentagon and whose proteges included Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz – as Yoda.

Well, if that’s the case, then Chinese national security supremo Yang Jiechi – who recently made shark fin’s soup out of Tony Blinken in Alaska – is Double Yoda. And Nikolai Patrushev – Secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation – is Triple Yoda.

Amid current ice-cold US-Russia relations – plunged into their worst state since the end of the Cold War – Triple Yoda, discreet, diplomatic and always sharp as a dagger, remains a soothing voice of reason, as demonstrated in a stunning interview by Kommersant daily.

Patrushev, born in 1951, is an army general who worked for KGB counter-intel in Leningrad, during the USSR days. Starting in 1994 he was the head of quite a few FSB departments. From 1999 to 2008 he was the FSB director, and led counter-terror ops in the North Caucasus from 2001 to 2003. Since May 2008 he is Russia’s top security advisor.

Patrushev rarely talks to the media. Thus the importance, for global public opinion, of highlighting some of his key insights. Let us hope the Beltway will be listening.

Patrushev clearly states that Russia does not want Cold War 2.0: “We would really not want that.” And he hopes that “common sense will prevail in Washington.”

Patrushev speaks

On Biden declaring Putin a “killer”: “I would not like to draw parallels, but exactly 75 years ago, in March 1946, Churchill delivered the famous Fulton speech in the presence of President Truman, in which he declared our country, his recent ally in the anti-Hitler coalition, an enemy. This marked the beginning of the Cold War.”

On Ukraine and Donbass: “I am convinced that this is a consequence of serious internal problems in Ukraine, from which the authorities are trying to divert attention in this way. They solve their problems at the expense of Donbass, while capital from the country has been flowing abroad for a long time … and Kiev is selling to foreigners – as they say now, at democratic prices – those remnants of industry that were able to stay afloat.”

On the first order of business for the US and Russia: It’s “the sphere of strategic stability and arms control. There is already a positive example here. It is our common decision to extend the Treaty on Strategic Offensive Arms, which was certainly not easy for the US administration.”

On possible areas of cooperation: “There is a certain potential for joint work on such issues as the fight against international terrorism and extremism … as well as Syria, the Middle East settlement, the nuclear problem of the Korean peninsula, the JCPOA with Iran … It is long overdue to discuss cyber-security issues, especially in view of Russia’s concerns and the accusations that have been brought forward to us for several years now.”

On contacts with Washington: “They continue. At the end of March, I had a telephone conversation with the assistant to the president of the United States for national security, Mr Sullivan .… By the way, it was held in a calm, business-like atmosphere, and we communicated quite thoroughly and constructively.”

On having no illusions about US apologies: “The United States dropped atomic bombs on Japan completely unnecessarily – although they knew perfectly well that the Red Army was starting hostilities against the Japanese grouping in Manchuria; they knew that Tokyo was ready to surrender. And the Japanese, and indeed the whole world, have been told for three quarters of a century that atomic strikes were inevitable … a kind of punishment from above. Remember what Obama said in his speech at the Hiroshima mourning event? ‘Death fell from heaven.’ And he did not want to say that this death fell from an American plane on the orders of the American president.”

On improvement of relations: “Given the unprecedentedly difficult nature of the internal situation in the United States today, the prospects for the further development of relations can hardly be called encouraging.”

On the US seeing Russia as a “threat,” and whether it is reciprocal: “We now see the main threat in a pandemic. For the United States, by the way, it turned out to be the moment of truth. The problems that American politicians were hiding from their fellow citizens became obvious, including by diverting their attention to the legends of ‘aggressive Russia.’”

On US bio-labs: “I suggest that you pay attention to the fact that numbers of biological laboratories under US control are growing by leaps and bounds across the world. And – by a strange coincidence – mainly at the Russian and Chinese borders … Of course, we and our Chinese partners have questions. We are told that there are peaceful sanitary and epidemiological stations near our borders, but for some reason they are more reminiscent of Fort Detrick in Maryland, where Americans have been working in the field of military biology for decades. By the way, it is necessary to pay attention to the fact that outbreaks of diseases uncharacteristic of these regions are recorded in the adjacent areas.”

On US accusations that Russia uses chemical weapons: “There is zero evidence, there is no argumentation either; some speculation does not even withstand an elementary test … When chemical incidents occurred in Syria, conclusions were drawn instantly and based on the information of the notorious ‘White Helmets.’ The organization worked so ‘well’ that it sometimes published its reports even before the incidents themselves.”

On NATO: “The question arises: who is holding back whom? Are Washington and Brussels holding back Russia, or is it their task to hold back the development of Germany, France, Italy and other European states? On the whole, NATO can hardly be called a military-political bloc. Remember how in the days of feudalism the vassals were obliged to appear to the master with their armies at his first  request? Only today they still have to buy weapons from the patron, regardless of their financial situation; otherwise questions about their loyalty will arise.”

On Europe: “Engaging with Europe is important. But being together with Europe at any cost is not a fix for Russian geopolitics. Nevertheless we keep the doors open, because we understand perfectly well that there is a momentary situation that Western politicians are guided by, and at the same time there are historical ties that have been developing between Russians and Europeans for centuries.”

On multipolarity: “There are a number of problems in the world today that, in principle, cannot be resolved without normal cooperation between the world’s leading players – Russia, the USA, the EU, China and India.”

The SWIFT ‘nuclear option’

Patrushev’s insights are particularly relevant as the Russia-China strategic partnership is solidifying by the minute; Foreign Minister Lavrov, in Pakistan, has called for literally everyone, “including the European Union,” to join Russia’s vision of a Greater Eurasia; and everyone is waiting for a face-off in the Donbass.

Patrushev’s diplomatic finesse still cannot erase the uneasy feeling in chancelleries across Eurasia about the distinct possibility of an incoming flare-up in the Donbass – with some extremely worrying consequences.

Dangerous scenarios are being openly discussed in Brussels corridors, especially one that sees the US/NATO combo expecting a de facto partition after a short hot war – with Novorossiya absorbing even Odessa.

If that is established as a fact on the ground, a new harsh round of US sanctions will follow. Iron Curtain 2.0 would be in effect; pressure for cancelation of Nord Stream 2 would reach fever pitch; and even the expulsion of Russia from SWIFT would be considered.

Dmitri Medvedev, currently Deputy Chairman of Russia’s Security Council, once called the latter “the nuclear option.” Patrushev was diplomatic enough not to address its volcanic consequences.

Nasrallah: US’ top priority is preventing a China-Russia-Iran alliance

Source

Nasrallah: US’ top priority is preventing a China-Russia-Iran alliance

April 05, 2021

Description:

In a recent televised speech, Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah claimed that the Biden administration’s top priority today was to prevent the formation of a major alliance or axis between China, Russia, and Iran.

Nasrallah also claimed that the United States and Israel were today in a state of decline, while the Iran-led ‘Axis of Resistance’ was on an upward trajectory.

The ‘Axis of Resistance’ broadly refers to a strategic anti-Israel/anti-US imperialist alliance composed of, but not limited to, Iran, Syria, Hezbollah, Iraq’s Hashed al-Shaabi, Yemen’s Ansarullah, and various Palestinian armed factions.

Source: Spot Shot (YouTube)

Date: 4 April, 2021

(Important Note: Please help us keep producing independent translations for you by contributing as little as $1/month here )

Transcript:

Hezbollah Secretary General, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah:

Of course, the Israelis too – (staying on) the Israeli file – the Israelis these days, I mean in the past few weeks and months, almost every day, despite the (many military/security) manoeuvres, they (nevertheless) express very publicly their concerns and worries over the fact that the Axis of Resistance is developing, that it is developing its capabilities. On the other hand, yes indeed, the Resistance (Axis) is working on the development and accumulation of its capabilities. This means that their worry has (real) foundations, (the Israelis) are not making up (this sense) of worry and concern.

Today, the Axis of Resistance is not silent, it is not an axis experiencing stagnation. On the contrary (my) honourable brothers, the Axis of Resistance has (successfully) passed – in these past 10 years – through the worst, most dangerous phase of its life and history. This is evident in what happened in Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq (these past 10 years), as well as (what happened in) the entire region, and in the severe embargo and maximum sanctions (campaign) on Iran and so on.

Indeed, this axis is facing these threats with increased work, hard work, diligent work, away from any type of showing-off (i.e. fruitless muscle-flexing). (The goal of all this work) is to accumulate the capabilities and power (of the Resistance Axis), (capabilities) that will decisively decide the future.

I would like to conclude with the following words; I wish to depict the international and regional scene, and share some advice too, advice to (some in) Lebanon and to the region as a whole, not only to the Lebanese. Today, there is definitely a (particular) scene in the world, and I will be brief here, as I have already taken a lot of time and I have only got a few more minutes according to the brothers. They gave me limited time, otherwise, these days I’m taking much time – I’m delivering long speeches.

There are significant international developments (occurring today), and it is clear that the top priority of the US administration is China and Russia. China as an economic force that can become the top economic force in the world, which Biden says will not happen (as long as) he is around. Russia, of course, is not an economic threat. They rather view it more from the military, political and security angles, in addition to competition (with it) on the global (level).

There are ongoing American efforts to prevent the formation of a coalition, front, axis, or something of this nature, whereby Iran stands besides China and Russia. For this reason, they are seeking to address the nuclear file issue with Iran, with an emphasis on diplomacy. Of course, the emphasis on diplomacy here is not an American act of kindness; it is a testament to the power of Iran. By the way, Iran’s position on this issue is powerful and firm. What (Iran) did not give to Trump under the maximum sanctions (campaign) and daily war threats, it will not give (Biden) today while it stands on the verge of (successfully) overcoming the embargo and sanctions phase.

So, these are the priorities of the Americans, they are trying to work out how to deal with the files of the (Middle East) region in one way or another; let’s go to Yemen and see how we can extinguish the Yemen war, or let’s go to Afghanistan and see how we can clean up the situation in Afghanistan. (This is what is on their mind), but their approach is not clear yet, because they have not taken final decisions (on these high-level matters), according to the information (we currently have).

Regardless of what some analysts say, concerning Syria and Lebanon, it is obvious that the (the American side) is distracted from Palestine. What I want to say – through this quick analysis – to the friends of America in our region, and to whoever is betting on the American administration in our region, I say to them that (America’s) priorities – or in other words, there are new developments that they need to take into consideration.

The first development is that the new American priorities are not (related to) our region, except for what relates to Israel. Their priorities now are Russia, China, and how to resolve the issue with Iran. Thus, if you want to resolve your crises, end your wars, solve your problems, improve your situation and achieve compromises, if you are waiting for the Americans to achieve all of this, then the wait will be very long.

Secondly, America is no longer the America that you know. There is a new term that his eminence Imam Khamenei presented last year, and he had placed a lot of emphasis on it. I hereby call for reflection on (this term) so that we don’t take it as a mere headline or form of political rhetoric: “The decline of America”. America is in decline. In the words of some literature, it can be described as (on a) “descending arc”. America is now in a state of fall; in a state of descent.

America’s upcoming challenges today, most of them are related to internal problems, regarding the Corona Virus; the economic situation and its consequences; the white race (and race-related issues), fanaticism, infighting and associated dangers. America has never experienced internal dangers the likes of which it is facing today. This requires a prolonged discussion, but there is a (certain) outlook (on this issue which I will share later).

Of course, when we talk strategically, we are not talking about one year, or two, three, four or five – we are talking about a trajectory. The trajectory of the US is a trajectory of decline, descent, and downfall. Whereas the trajectory of the Axis of Resistance in the region, (with its) states, movements, and peoples, is an upward trajectory.

Priorities will (thus) be different. Therefore, I hereby call on you all, as states, peoples, regimes, movements, peoples, sects, groups, and whatever else: let us not wait for America, let us not wait for the (rest of the) world. Let us not wait for international developments. Let us hold dialogue on the regional and national (levels). Let us hold dialogue among all the states of the region, and dialogue among the peoples of the region, in order to resolve our problems and crises.

Let us not put off until tomorrow what we can do today, as the present day is better for you than tomorrow. I believe that all those who belong to the Axis of Resistance, as a result of the honesty, sincerity, and concern (they have) for their homelands, they are ready to reach certain resolutions, solutions, and compromises that would allow us to overcome all these difficult phases. This is the horizon that we see before us.

Of course, in light of this international and regional shift, Israel, just like its master, is on a path of decline. It is on “the descending arc”. The earnest wish of his eminence, (the late) Sheikh Ahmad Zein, that which the brothers spoke about before me, this wish is strong and vibrant. God willing, some of us – at the very least – will enter (the city of) al-Quds and pray in al-Quds, God willing. This is the horizon which we can see.


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