Saturday, 29 November 2014

Absolutely crucial statement by Foreign Minister Lavrov (*MUST READ*!)

Leading Israeli Minister Lieberman Unveils Racist Peace Plan: Pay Palestinians to Leave Israel

The latest shocker, reported in Haaretz. Maybe the New York Times will cover this before long, and lament its beloved Israeli democracy for even permitting such discussion. By a leading government minister who seeks to be Prime Minister. Barak Ravid…

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At Global Research, our mandate is to increase awareness on the broadest possible level while maintaining full independence in our reports and analyses. Our commitment is to make our articles and videos available to the broadest possible readership, on a…

Observations on President Putin’s call upon US not to meddle in Russia affairs

by Peter Koenig Press TV reports on 22 November 2014 that President Putin, speaking at a forum of the All-Russia Peoples' Front in Moscow on 17 November, said “They [the US] want to subdue us, want to solve their problems at our expense. No one in history ever managed to do this to Russia, and no one ever will.” This is certainly no exaggeration. Russia has not only a solid trade and monetary alliance with China which already today bypasses the western dollar dominated western system, Russia is also one of the key members of the BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) which met last September in Dushanbe, Tajikistan to expands its current membership (China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan) by including India, Pakistan, Iran and likely also Mongolia. Turkey, hosting a strategically crucial NATO base, wavering between east and west, has wanted to become an SCO member for quite a while. Turkish-speaking SCO governments would likely to support their petition. This would clearly be a huge conflict and blow to the western powers, particularly Washington â€" and may not go ‘unpunished’. The expanded SCO would control some 20 percent of the world’s oil and half of all global gas reserves. On top of that, the bloc would represent about half of the world’s population. The SCO and BRICS together would cover more than half the world’s population and control about a third of the globe’s GDP. The issuance of a joint new global currency either by these countries at once or step by step is almost a certainty. The question is when. Given the disastrous course of western economies, such a new currency and monetary system is not far off. It would gradually replace the (petro) dollar for world trading as well as a reserve currency. The latter has already started. Ten years ago about 90% of world reserves consisted of dollar denominated securities. Today this proportion has shrunk to 60% - and â€" to the ignorance of most of the world â€" is steadily declining. According to the IMF, reserves in other currencies in emerging markets have shot up by 400% since 2003. From August 2013 to February 2014, South Korea increased its yuan holdings 25-fold. So â€" Mr. Putin’s seemingly ‘bold’ statement is very much supported by facts. The western predatory economic system is decaying fast. Russia and China are already today prepared with an alternative. They are working actively with the other BRICS and SCO countries to prepare a solid larger scale alternative currency and monetary system, free from the FED, Wall Street, the IMF and the BIS (Bank for International Settlements). ---------- Epidemics and Pandemics On a seemingly unrelated matter, a new phenomenon is emerging. From the outset it looks like detached from the east-west economic power struggle. But it may be all but detached from the western faltering economy. It is the threat of deadly pandemics that seem to emerge at the same time â€" and all are under control of the UN and its specialized organization, WHO which is assisted and advised by a number of international laboratories whose identifications largely escapes common knowledge. Most of the epidemics, potential pandemics, started in Africa, which is home to about 60% of the world’s remaining natural unrenewable resources â€" and which are sought by the western and Northern Hemisphere’s elite for their continued comfort and well-being. Ebola broke out a few months ago in West Africa â€" Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea and has since spread to Mali and Nigeria. Ebola is not a new disease. It has been reported and observed in Central Africa and former Zaïre in the seventies. WHO disposes of antidotes or vaccines. However, the US Department of Defense â€" which incidentally also has a research program on biological warfare â€" has contracted a Canadian laboratory two years ago to test and develop an Ebola vaccine in specially built hospitals in Liberia and Sierra Leone. Since the new Ebola outbreak in July 2014, more than 5,000 people have been killed according to WHO. A couple of days ago it was reported by WHO that in Madagascar a plague epidemic had claimed the lives of at least 40 people since August 2014. â€" The bubonic plague, also called Black Death, was considered to be basically extinct since it killed a third of the European population in the 14ht Century, although a less virulent form may still be present today. No major outbreaks have occurred since 1904, when a Plague epidemic killed about 3% of Bombay’s population, when antidotes where not yet available. Today’s version can apparently fairly easily be suppressed with antibiotics and pesticides. â€" So â€" why is it still killing people in Madagascar? And why has the news become available only now? A few weeks ago the deadly H5N1 avian influenza virus was newly discovered in the Netherlands, Germany and the UK. Out of seven recent cases of Bird Flu in Egypt, two died. In 2009 thanks to a WHO false flag alarm, Europe bought hundreds of millions of H5N1 vaccines â€" a bonanza for the pharmaceuticals â€" a scandal for WHO that has deeply tarnished the organization’s image. In countries like Switzerland, people who showed any indication of a cold were practically force-vaccinated. Aids â€" the HIV virus, also a Pentagon biological warfare experiment â€"broke out in the 1980’s, likewise in Africa, spread to Haiti from where it was ‘imported’ to the US and the rest of the world. Today it is, though incurable, under control. But a new strain could easily be designed to make current drugs impotent. All of this looks like a concerted effort by the power elite to (i) keep populations in check; justify Marshall law at a whim to oppress any potential uprising, for example against a new wave of organized theft of the western predatory greed economy; and (ii) to gradually help reduce world population â€" a target that the elite has strived for since the end of WWII â€" it’s also one of the key objectives of the Bilderberg Society as voiced by many power figures, like Bill Gates and on several occasions by Henry Kissinger, arguably the worst war criminal still alive. People could be easily quarantined by Presidential Executive Order under the guise of protecting the population at large from a pandemic â€" for which most likely vaccines and antidotes have been clandestinely developed as part of the biological warfare program â€" to protect the elite â€" and other strains for the public at large possibly laced with the very disease they pretend to prevent. Once Washington gives the order, say for force-vaccination, or Marshall Law â€" the European lackeys would simply follow suit; an easy way to keep populations under control, while the western financial system could run their final deed â€" depredation of the remaining social safety nets and public savings. Again â€" on the dismal western economic scenario and the pandemic threats to the world, Mr. Putin’s harsh words to the US, a warning against interference in Russia â€" are but a signal for Washington to reckon with a vigilant Russia (and China) â€" vigilant vis-à-vis the impending collapse of the western monetary system, and vigilant vis-à-vis the west’s massive military and biological warfare threats. Worth a thought? â€" And worth massive publication, so people may connect the dots. Peter Koenig is an economist and geopolitical analyst. He is also a former World Bank staff and worked extensively around the world in the fields of environment and water resources. He writes regularly for Global Research, ICH, the Voice of Russia, now Ria Novosti, The Vineyard of The Saker Blog, and other internet sites. He is the author of Implosion â€" An Economic Thriller about War, Environmental Destruction and Corporate Greed â€" fiction based on facts and on 30 years of World Bank experience around the globe.

Poland is Blowing in the Wrong Direction

Poland’s Foreign Minister compares his country’s relationship with USA to a “blowjob without getting paid”. In a taped “over a dinner conversation” with Jacek Rostowski, a former Polish Minister of Finance, Poland’s FM Radoslaw Sikorski allegedly expressed his frustration as … “We will get a conflict with both Russians and Germans, and we’re going to think […]

UN Resolution: “Combating the Glorification of Nazism”

The Committee then took up a text on combating glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance (document A/C.3/69/L.56/Rev.1). Speaking before the vote, the representative of Ukraine …

NEO â€" Gunnar

- Ulson Gunnar - Warplanes, helicopter gunships, heavy armor and troops poured into eastern Ukraine in a blitzkrieg offensive after the show elections.

CrossTalk: Whitewashing fascism

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lrlDi9Twfyo?list=UUpwvZwUam-URkxB7g4USKpg]

Mickey Rourke, 62, wins boxing match against 29

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2853452/Mickey-Rourke-s-king-ring-Actor-62-emerges-victorious-beats-boxing-opponent-half-age-minutes-takes-jabs-Twitter.html

Ukraine crisis: West's sanctions target Putin, not policy, Russia insists

Russia sees no connection between sanctions imposed against it by the United States and the European Union and the deepening crisis in Ukraine. Instead it views them merely as a "destabilizing" effort to inflict damage, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told journalists Friday.

NEO â€" Putin puts Ukraine gas payments on Europe’s back

- The Geo-political war going on over Ukraine has been short on bullets and bombs, and long with lies and disinformation.

How Russia and Germany may save Europe from war â€" RT

http://rt.com/op-edge/209695-war-russia-nato-missile-defense/

Russia

NEO â€" What America is really threatening in Ukraine

- "Henry Kamens gives us one hell of an overview of the present Ukraine mess, which I have compared to the Tar Baby in the briar patch from Uncle Remus."

France and Britain to Develop “Armed Combat Drones” to Attack both Aerial and Ground Targets

Illegal drone killings continue in Pakistan and Yemen. Reuters reports that a U.S. drone killed five suspected militants in northwest Pakistan yesterday. The information came from a militant and a government official. The intensity of air strikes has grown as…

Putin’s Choices in Ukraine

Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. That is the situation for Putin with regards to the crisis in Ukraine right now. As before, the blogger called “the Saker” describes Russia’s choices in an excellent way. What is going on is unbelievable. It is incomprehensible that the individual countries in Europe can support the […]

Mickey Rourke, 62, wins boxing match against 29

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2853452/Mickey-Rourke-s-king-ring-Actor-62-emerges-victorious-beats-boxing-opponent-half-age-minutes-takes-jabs-Twitter.html

Supporting the Rouble And Other Energy Exporter's Currencies

by George Oprisko Earler, you specifically mentioned that currencies of many energy exporters, eg: Venezuela, Iran, Malaysia, Indonesia, Russia, and Ecuador have dropped sharply against the US Dollar. This essay explores the reasons behind the observed sellof(s), and debunks the myth that each currency stands on it's own, and is a unique case, instead asserting that concerted action by one party is responsible. The party I believe to be responsible for the declines observed in the above currencies, and that of Argentina, is the US Treasury. The venue for attack on these currencies, is NYMEX in NYC and it's sister exchange in London, the world's largest, which has increased its share of global turnover in traditional transactions from 34.6% in April 2007 to 36.7% in April 2010. London's dominance in the market, determines a currency's quoted price, which is usually the London market price. This even affects operations of the International Monetary Fund which uses noon London Market Prices to calculate the value of its special drawing rights. Note that virtually all currency trading occurs on these two exchanges, and that currencies are traded like commodities, with only 0.1% margin required. Furthermore, both exchanges are located on territories hostile to the BRICs, SCO, and CSTO. Needed is a mechanism which shifts trading in the Rouble to Moscow, and only Moscow, likewise trading in the Yuan must be shifted to Shanghai/HongKong, the Iranian Rial to Kish Island, the Argentine Peso to Buenos Aires, the South African Rand to Johannesburg, the Ecuadorian Sucre to Quito, the Venezuelan Bolivar to Caracas, and the Brazilian Peso to Rio. Needed is a mechanism which eliminates naked short selling, while permitting trade in physical goods. Since virtually all the currencies studied here are FIAT currencies, not backed by specie, I assert that the principles espoused in Modern Monetary Theory(MMT) apply. The key principles of MMT with respect to FIAT currencies are the following: a) FIAT currencies have value because the sovereign demands payment of fees and taxes in them b) FIAT currencies have value because the sovereign demands acceptance of them for settlement of debts, public and private c) FIAT currencies have value because the sovereign has a monopoly on their issuance To maximize the value and utility of a FIAT currency, the sovereign must maximize the volume of goods and services purchasable in it's currency, and must jealously guard against issuance of it's currency by others. In the case of the Rouble, maximization of goods and services purchasable by it, involves demanding payment in it for all goods and services produced in, imported into, or exported from Russia. This specifically means a) requiring payment in Roubles for Russian energy exports, b) demanding that importers of goods to Russia accept Roubles as payment, c) eliminating the ability of Banks to “create” Roubles through accounting entries when loans are made, via imposition of full reserve banking covering all banks(including foreign banks) operating within the Rouble Zone. Additionally, Russia must re-industrialize, and must grow it's agricultural sector to fully meet domestic demand for manufactures and food. This will require redefining Russia's W TO obligations. To protect it's foreign reserves, and exchange rate, Russia must eliminate naked short selling of the Rouble, and must maximize international demand for the Rouble. Demanding payment in Roubles for Russian exports of energy, and materials is essential for the latter, and conversion of the electronic Rouble from a commodity into a security, via BitCoin Technology (BCT) is essential for the former. BCT as mentioned here is the algorithm which creates BitCoins. A BitCoin is a data packet, nothing more. Yes, much of the data is encrypted, to provide authenticity, but in essence, a BitCoin, has an issue date, issuer, Denomination, serial number, and transaction history. This is similar to a paper Rouble note, which uses special paper, special inks, unique engraving, holograms, to create a paper emblazoned with the denomination, serial number, date of issue, issuer, using the former to guarantee authenticity. This essay advocates conversion of all electronic Roubles into ElectronicRoubles, which we define here as Data Packets containing the following fields: 1. Denomination 2. Serial Number 3. Issue Date 4. Issuer 5. Encrypted Transaction History 6. Security Code, which is an encrypted hash of the foregoing fields To prevent counterfeiting, all ERs are recorded in the RCB database, including the owner of record. To prevent naked short selling, only the Owner of Record, or an authorized exchange may sell ERRs. Furthermore, authorized exchanges must post a bond with the RCB, amounting to 1oz of .999 fine gold per 100,000 Roubles in authorized open interest, subject to forfeit at 1oz of gold for every 100,000 Counterfeit/Stolen Roubles traded. This mechanism links the Rouble to gold, but does not make the Rouble exchangible for gold, and it specifically eliminates the ability of UK/US money center banks to fund naked sales of the Rouble, via the mechanism of the RCB challenging any or all sales, for the purpose of enforcing it's monopoly on issuance. How would this work in practice? Consider the following example: The Russian Government pays Sukhoi 100,000,000 Roubles for Fighter Aircraft. Traditionally, this is done by crediting Sukhoi's account at it's bank, which we assume to be SberBank. Using ER(s), The Defense Ministry pays Sukoi with 100 Electronic Rouble Notes, each worth 1 Million Roubles. Sukhoi deposits the notes at it's bank, SberBank. Upon making the deposit, SberBank notifies the RCB of the transfer from Sukhoi to itself of the notes, and the RCB confirms the authenticity of the transfer with Sukhoi. The RCB recalculates the Security Code using it's 512 bit Private Key for these notes, and ReIssues the Notes to SberBank. Sometime later, Sukhoi pays it's employees and suppliers 50 million Roubles, via transfers from it's account at SberBank to other accounts at SberBank and other banks. Of this amount 25 million Roubles is owed AlfaBank. SberBank transfers 25 of it's million Rouble ERs to AlfaBank. AlfaBank notifies the RCB of the purchase, and the RCB verifies the transaction, adding it to the transaction history of each note, recalculating the Security code using it's private key, and re-issuing the 25 notes to AlfaBank. Later, Diamler of Germany, a customer of AlfaBank chooses to transfer 10 million Roubles to it's German Bank to pay for items imported into Russia. AlfaBank notifies the Russian Ex-Im Bank of the international transfer to DeutchBank, DeutschBank confirms receipt of the 10 million Rouble notes, The Russian ExIm Bank notfies the RCB, which adds the transaction to the history, recalculates the Security Code, and reissues the notes, which are recorded on the ExIm Banks Transaction Log as held outside Russian Territory. Still later NYMEX receives an order to sell 10 million Rouble ER(s) from DeutschBank. NYMEX sends the serial numbers to the Russian ExIm Bank, which verifies ownership, and authenticity. If the owner is selling and the notes are authentic, the Russian ExIm Bank so notifies NYMEX. If not, the notes are listed as stolen or counterfeit, as appropriate. Should NYMEX choose to conduct Sales of Rouble Notes without verifying their authenticity, RCB can seize the collateral NYMEX put up to become authorized to trade Roubles, according to the volume of unauthorized trades conducted. Via this mechanism, embezzlement of Roubles is eliminated, and illegal movements of Roubles abroad are also eliminated, and the RCB ExIm Bank knows the exact volume of Roubles held abroad, the daily/annual demand for Roubles by foreign firms who trade goods and services with Russia, and the identity of those firms. Furthermore, this mechanism makes impossible naked short sales of the Rouble, because all Roubles offered for sale, must be authenticated by the RCB â€" ExIm Bank, who reserves the right to buy them. This specifically means that Futures Contracts in the Rouble must specify the notes offered for sale, and the notes in question must be authenticated before the contract position is opened, because the RCB can at any time challenge the contract, demanding forfeiture of collateral, should the contract be for non-existent/conterfeit/stolen notes. This will essentially eliminate Futures Trading of Roubles.

Ukraine and the UN Resolution against “The Glorification of Nazism”: The US Vote at the UN is “Holocaust Denial” â€" Here’s Why

The UN vote against the glorification of nazism and nazi figures was a watershed insight into understanding what is going on inside western governments today. Eric Zuesse’s article labeling the no vote by the US, Canada, and Ukraine at the…

The Trial Of Radovan Karadžić Enters The Final Phase

Note from the Saker: I have recently posted an excellent analysis by Stephen Karganovic of the legal farce or "judicial persecution" of Vojislav Å eÅ¡elj by the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia at the Hague. I was so impressed by this article, that I asked Karganovic if he would agree to update me, and my readers, about the situation of Radovan Karadžić. Karganovic kindly agreed and he sent me the article I am posting today. Considering some of the comments elicited by the previous article I sadly have to remind you all of two things which I consider self-evident:1) To describe the gross violation of basic legal norms and civil rights of an accused person does not necessarily imply an endorsement of that person's views, actions or character.  For example, do denounce the murder by a lynchmob of Muammar Gaddafi does not imply an endorsement of his policies or character. 2) In today's world, it appears that *nobody* has the intellectual honesty or courage to give the accused Serbians at the ICTFY a fair hearing or even to express concern about the total lack of respect of even basic legal norms in their trials. I refuse to "forget" or "not notice". I shall not be a bystander and I shall not give in to the social pressure to conform. I want to express my deepest gratitude to Stephen Karganovic for is superb analysis of these two trials.The Saker ******* by Stephen Karganovic The Prosecution and the Defence have filed their final submissions in the trial of Radovan Karadžić, former president of the Republic of Srpska, which was concluded on 2 May 2014. The trial was conducted before the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia at the Hague. A total of 195 Prosecution and 238 Defence witnesses were heard. The prosecutor, Alan Tieger, has asked for life imprisonment, the maximum sentence, for Dr. Karadžić who stands accused of genocide, crimes against humanity (persecution, extermination, murder, deportation, etc.), and violation of the laws and customs of war. Dr Karadžić was the political head of the Bosnian Serb state during the 1992-1995 ethnic conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina and, as President, he was commander-in-chief of its armed forces. While during the lengthy trial the prosecution focused on a variety of imputed crimes, the main charges against Dr. Karadžić concerned “ethnic cleansing” of the Muslim and to a lesser extent Croatian population, the siege and bombardment of Sarajevo by Serbian forces, and events in Srebrenica following its capture by Serbian forces in July of 1995. In his three-day summary of the evidence which began on 1 October, Karadžić reiterated his innocence of the charges outlined in the indictment. “I am not guilty,” he proclaimed. “This court has put on trial not me, but the Serbian people.” Although not a lawyer but psychiatrist by training and representing himself in the proceedings, as the trial advanced Dr. Karadžić’s proficiency increased noticeably. While in his 876 page final submission he addressed meticulously every item presented in the prosecution’s case, in the concluding remarks he focused mainly on refuting the three charges which were at the heart of the prosecutor’s indictment. There was never a policy or “joint criminal enterprise” to expel Muslims from Serb areas of Bosnia;The shelling and sniping in Sarajevo was in response and proportional to outgoing fire and attacks by the Bosnian Muslim forces from the militarized city, and the most dramatic of these events, like Markale, were staged by the Muslims to obtain international intervention for their side; andHe had no knowledge that prisoners from Srebrenica would be, were being, or had been executed and the number of such executions has been exaggerated. The defendant argued forcefully that while large-scale movement of each of the three ethnic populations (Muslim, Croats, and Serbs) to areas where their co-nationals constituted the majority or were under the control of their armed forces is undeniable, that is an inherent characteristic of most ethnic conflicts. The prosecution, Karadžić claimed, failed to present any evidence of a plan or policy on the Bosnian Serb side to expel members of the other ethnicities from territory under its control. Quite the opposite, numerous orders were issued to troops and authorities under Karadžić’s command prohibiting ill-treatment of Muslim and Croat non-combatants. Radovan KaradžićThe siege of Sarajevo, as expected, was a very contentious issue during the trial. Karadžić reiterated the position of the Serbian side that while Muslims had a strong presence in the city, the surrounding countryside was mainly populated by Serbs. As a result, there was no “siege” in proper military terms but merely holding the line of demarcation between the respective territories of the two communities. Karadžić was largely successful in demonstrating that, contrary to agreements reached at the beginning of the war concerning its demilitarisation, Sarajevo contained significant and well-equipped Muslim military formations which conducted offensive operations against Serbian forces throughout the conflict. One of the highlights of the defence case was undoubtedly the meticulous and competent dismantling of the story line constructed around Markale market bombings, with considerable civilian casualties, allegedly carried out by Bosnian Serb forces in February 1994 and August 1995. These bombings were significant in psychologically turning world public opinion against the Serb side and, additionally, served as pretexts for the military involvement of NATO forces on the Muslim side, thus helping to tip the military balance in the war. Karadžić’s defence reinforced doubts that virtually from the start were circulating widely that the Markale massacres were a classical “false flag” operation conceived and carried out by the Muslims, perhaps with Western intelligence assistance. It was, he argued, designed to incriminate the other side, and not a war crime deliberately committed by Serbian forces. Forensic and eyewitness evidence produced by the defence left intact very little of the prosecution’s case with regard to Markale. Turning to Srebrenica, while asserting that the prosecution offered no evidence to link him to the planning, execution, or knowledge of any crimes committed there in the aftermath of the Serbian takeover in July 1995, Dr. Karadžić vigorously disputed the standard narrative. His position was that the prosecution claim of 7,000 to 8,000 executed prisoners was an impossibility because the prosecution failed to produce evidence that more than about 3,500 Muslim POWs were ever taken captive in that military operation. Furthermore, according to evidence presented by the defence, a large number of Muslim losses were in fact combat deaths sustained during Muslim army 28th Division’s breakout from Srebrenica to Tuzla and were therefore legitimate casualties which cannot be imputed as war crimes. Dr. Karadžić’s position is that up to 1,000 Muslim prisoners of war were probably executed after the fall of Srebrenica on 11 July 1995, but that â€" setting aside revenge killings â€" the executions had neither an official nor premeditated character and were carried out by rogue structures outside of the Bosnian Serb military chain of command. Karadžić did not deny that a massacre of prisoners took place, though on a far smaller scale than alleged in the indictment, but asserted that neither the military nor the political authorities of the Republic of Srpska were involved in it. On the issue of “genocide,” which is particularly complex from the legal standpoint and sensitive morally, Karadžić maintained that the evidence does not demonstrate any intent, prior to the 11 July 1995 takeover of Srebrenica, to exterminate Muslims as a group protected under the Genocide Convention. Moreover, he referred to much contrary evidence produced at the trial indicating that captured prisoners were being treated regularly into 13 July, thus again refuting the existence of prior genocidal specific intent. Subsequently, groups of prisoners were shot at various locations, but the prosecution failed to link those events to state or military policy. According to Karadžić, it would be just as reasonable to view these murders as revenge by local Serbs for the atrocities previously committed by Muslim army forces using the UN-protected Srebrenica enclave as a launching pad for military operations against Serbian civilians in the surrounding areas. In any event, Karadžić argued, the object of a genocide â€" even if there was the intention to commit it â€" could only have been Bosnian Muslims as a whole, not a comparatively negligible percentage of Muslim residents and refugees in a small town. However, no evidence was presented that a crime of such scope or nature was planned or committed either on the national or the municipal level. The Karadžić trial (and the mostly parallel trial of Bosnian Serb army commander, General Ratko Mladic) is the last in the series of Hague show trials since the Tribunal was established and began its work in the mid-1990s. In an important sense it encapsulates the spirit and methodology of ICTY. Inequality of resources between the huge Prosecution staff and the tiny Defence team is blatant. The Chamber regularly granted Prosecution requests and blocked those of the Defence. The Prosecution deprived the Defence of thousands of pages of potentially exculpatory evidence during the trial without provoking the slightest effort on the part of the judicial Chamber to correct that outrageous procedural and substantive injustice. Defence request for access to important evidence for independent forensic verification, such as DNA data that allegedly supports the prosecution’s version of the number of Srebrenica victims, was flatly denied by the Chamber. And the list goes on and on… The unequal conditions in which the trial was conducted leave little doubt that the judges will go to great lengths to look at the evidence and its significance from the Prosecution’s point of view. With respect to the formal outcome of the Karadžić trial, it is practically certain that the judges are highly unlikely to take the politically risky step of disregarding the prosecution’s recommendation of life in prison for Radovan Karadžić. That being settled, the larger issue is how the verdict will be framed and what reverberations it will have on the Bosnian political scene. Karadžić’s close collaborator, Bosnian Serb National Assembly President Momčilo KrajiÅ¡nik, was initially accused of genocide, but in the verdict that charge was dropped by the court for lack of evidence. In Dr. Karadžić’s case, whether or not he is found guilty of genocide (it being understood that in light of Tribunal’s jurisprudence, there are in any event plenty of crimes in the indictment that the court could use to rationalize life imprisonment, if it so chooses) is bound to have considerable impact on local Bosnian politics. It would add considerable impetus and an apparent legal justification to the persistent Muslim demand for the dissolution of the Republic of Srpska as a “genocidal entity.” It would also provide a quasi-judicial basis for collecting from Republic of Srpska’s taxpayers huge civil indemnity judgments that individual Muslim “victims” have obtained in various courts for abuses suffered at the hands of Serbian forces during the Bosnian civil war. There is also another important potential effect of the Karadžić judgment that is certain to have an impact on the Serbian Democratic Party (SDP) in the Republic of Srpska, which he founded. While Karadžić was in hiding and later at the Hague, his party, once considered a bastion of Serbian nationalism, was taken over by a new cadre of pragmatic politicians eager to avoid confrontations with Western powers and ready to make political accommodations in return for Western support to replace current pro-Russian Republika Srpska President Milorad Dodik. SDP’s candidate lost the 12 October election to Dodik, but the party still has considerable influence with the support of about one-fourth of the electorate. It is rumored in Banja Luka, the Bosnian Serb capital, that the new SDP leadership has agreed to redesign party ideology to make it more acceptable to Euro-Atlanticist mentors, similarly to the way that operation was performed a few years ago in neighbouring Serbia by former nationalist Radicals Aleksandar Vučić and Tomislav Nikolić. According to well-informed sources, again, current SDP leadership were warned by Western interests that by the time the Karadžić trial is over they would be well advised to fully transform their traditional image. Otherwise, their “extremist nationalist” and, after the Karadžić verdict, quite possibly also “genocidal” party might simply be banned by the High representative in Sarajevo who, after all, is the real ruler of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

NEO â€" Ukrainian Elections: EU Membership May be a Mirage

- The Ukraine coup continues to be a zoo, and continued failure will be nothing new. Its Western backers will continue their takeover of another struggling country

The Reasons Why Russia Will Not Invade Ukraine

Russia will not invade Ukraine and here are the reasons. A lot of energy is right now spend on trying to get Russia more involved with the civil war in Ukraine. The New World Order cabal wants it because they want NATO to get a reason to come to the defense of the new government they […]

When Fake Videos Go Viral: What the Fake Syria Sniper Boy Video Tell Us About “Media Experts”

Many mainstream media websites helped a fake video go viral this month. The video showing a young Syrian boy running through sniper fire to save a little girl, was exposed as a fake when the Norwegian producer Lars Klevberg made…

The Scotsman who took a shrapnel wound for Russia

Yup, I managed to get two mistakes into one title yesterday:  Graham Phillips is not English, but Scottish, and his would was caused not by a bullet, but by shrapnel.  The good news is that he is doing well, here he is making a short statement from the hospital.  And, yes, for those who might wonder, he is speaking in Russian, not English, even if his Russians does sound very, very English :-)  And since he basically says that he is okay and needs some rest, there is no transcript needed in this case.Cheers,The Saker[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oFwAIi5HCPA?rel=0]

Will Apple's Price Hike in Russia Affect Profitability?

Apple Inc. (AAPL) recently hiked the price of its devices in Russia.

Putin Speaks

On April 17, Putin held his annual televised Q & A session. He did it with ordinary Russians nationwide. He did it for the 12th time. Doing so connects with them.

Speech by Putin to Russian Lawmakers about Crimean Referendum

Historical speech by President Putin to Russian lawmakers March 18 2014 about the referendum in Crimea and the acceptance of Crimea into the Russian Federation. I remember being in Moscow listening to the direct transmission of this historical speech by president Putin. Even if I am not Russian, I couldn’t help to feel how this […]

NEO â€" Planet Earth “done in” by False Flags

- Seth Ferris is doing a wonderful job at showing us how some of the nasty things our government does, that they know we would never approve of.

Killed by Police in “Justifiable Homicides”: The FBI’s “Police Homicide” Count Is Biased

According to the FBI’s newest Uniform Crime Report (UCR), released this week, 461 people were killed by police in “justifiable homicides” in 2013. This number has gotten some media attention, both because it’s considered by some to be the “best…

The Resistance in France

It has been a very long while since I have written about the popular resistance movement in France embodied by the philosopher Alain Soral and the humorist Dieudonne.  [Sidebar: for those who have missed these articles, they can be found here:Israel lobby commits major blunder in France: tries to silence a comedian Dieudonne's anti-Zionist campaign in full swing in France Is a new revolution quietly brewing in France? "Quenelle warfare" in France - a "report from the trenches" A few news updates from the virtual trenches of the "Quenelle war" State repression in France only makes the Resistance grow stronger Dieudonne's music video and an appeal to French speakers (updated) La "quenelle" now in music!! (in French with English subs) These are just a few examples, use the search option for more]My purpose today is to update you on what has been happening to the only meaningful anti-system Resistance movement in France.Soral and DieudonneThe first thing to say is that the state repression against Dieudonne got much more vicious: both of them are now being sued for huge amounts of money. The list of lawsuits filed against Alain Soral now takes a full page on his website and the total sum for which he is being used is a stunning 489 292 Euros.  I don't know the exact figures for Dieudonne, but I do know that attempts are being made at seizing both his home and his theater in Paris.Next to that financial repression, the "minutes of hate" against Dieudonne and Soral have now become a quasi-permanent fixture in the French media and the doubleplusgoodthing blogosphere: they are accused of Nazis, anti-Semites, homophobes and, of course, the inspiration of various terrorist movements.  Dieudo is also accused of being a crook.  Some individuals do not shy away from overtly racist slurs like the Rabbi Rav Dymovisz who said that Dieudonne proves that Darwin was right and he is the living proof that some humans are descendants from monkeys "most probably a gorilla".There have been even numerous attempts to censor both Soral's books and Dieudo's shows, including efforts in the French State Court, but these have run into that pesky problem that French law does not foresee political censorship.  Hence the two tricks most used have been the standard accusation of anti-Semitism and "risk of trouble to the public order".  In reality, of course, both Soral and Dieudo are completely non-violent and their ideology is one of reconciliation and equality, not hatred.  They, however, have been attacked physically many times, but the police has always denied them any protection and their aggressors have walked away with, at most, a gentle little slap on the wrist.  Since Soral and Dieudo are, of course, losing most of their lawsuits, it appears inevitable that prison sentences will inevitably replace fines because they will be tried as "repeat offenders".And yet, for all these efforts by the French 1%ers to crush them, the popularity of both men has continued to steadily grow, but mostly in the disenfranchised classes and the immigrant communities.  Diedo only plays to full theaters while Soral's books are best-sellers.  As for their websites, they have more viewers than the national TV channels.  The French elites, however, including the putatively freedom-loving intelligentsia, prefer to look away as if not noticing what is taking place or, worse, then join into the chorus of the 'official' ideological lynchmob.Still, Diedo and Soral are not giving up the struggle.  They have even decided to form a Equality and Reconciliation (E&R) party.  These men are smart and they know that they cannot win, but what they can do is get two things which the state desperately tires to deny them: a platform and money.  Becoming a party can get them both.In the past Soral and Dieudo have supported the short-lived Anti-Zionist Party which did remarkably well considering the political reality in France, but make no mistake, in this case "remarkably well" means single digit figures or less.  There is absolutely no reason to believe that their new party will do any better, at least visibly.  This is why:There are really two "Frances" today: one, the official, visible one, appears to be one of consensus, of democracy, of relative well-being.  The other, the "invisible one", is one of deep alienation, of rage, of despair and of revolt.  And these two Frances are not always were one would expect them to be found.  For example, in the very same French police which is used by the state to persecute Dieudonne and Soral the popularity of both men is very high.  The same goes for the military, the fire departments, and a host of other government agencies.  Likewise, even though neither Dieudo or Soral are Muslim (both are Christian Latins, though in the case of Soral this is more of a cultural affinity), they get a great deal of support from the Muslim immigres in France who understand and respect their message.As for the French "Far Right", it mostly dislikes them, often with no less intensity then the rest of the Establishment.  The problem here is a generational one.  If Dieudo and Soral both respect Jean-Marie LePen and if both of them are still close to him both ideologically, they both have accused the National Front of having basically joined the Establishment, of having been co-opted and corrupted, and they have strongly criticized the anti-Muslim stance of Marine LePen.The second ideological struggle which is taking place is that Dieudo and Soral are also on the offensive against a French author named Eric Zemmour whom they accuse of being a fake dissident.  Zemmour recently wrote a book entitled "The French Suicide" in which is strongly criticizes almost all French policies and politicians since 1968 and in which he, a French Jew, openly criticized the use for petty political purpose of the Nazi persecutions of Jews.  He even went as far as to declare on national prime time TV that Petain had saved French Jewry.  Among his many theories, Zemmour is also known for declaring that Islam is not compatible with the French republic and that immigrants should be assimilated.  This is were he enters into a direct conflict with Dieudo and Soral.They accuse him of being the new "Bernard Henri Levi", the new "official ideologue" who is now in charge of Islam-bashing in the name of French patriotism. Their proof? That Zemmour is constantly invited to all the major talkshows on French radio and TV whereas they are quasi officially blacklisted.Eric ZemmourFrankly, I think that in this case they are simply wrong.  First, I do not agree with Zemmour's view of Islam at all, but to say that he is simply wrong or mistaken does not imply that he is being used.  There is a very simple explanation of why he is being invited everywhere: he is not Soral or Dieudo.  Really, his views are very similar to the ones of Soral on many topics, you can think of him as a "Soral light", and that is precisely why to invite him to the official media makes sense for the Establishment: it is a safe(r) way to "prove" that there still is freedom of speech in France and that even a "quasi-Soral" gets airtime.Zemmour is a brilliant man and speaker, he is also a formidable debater who, unless he is shouted down, usually makes minced meat of his opponents while keeping a smile all along.  Zemmour is also very direct and, in my opinion, intellectually honest man, and I don't see him at all as the next "BHL" or somebody who is corrupted by the system.  However, I also think that Zemmour is completely wrong about Islam and, even more importantly, wrong about France.  The France which is would like to see is one which is gone forever and though he does not really deny that, he also does not want to accept it.  In a way, he reminds me of Strelkov, many of whose views I share, but who appears to me to lack the realism needed to get things done in the modern world and the reality of today's Russia.  Whatever may be the case, Zemmour, who is usually associated with the French far Right, is also a target of Dieudo and Soral.Thus it is completely wrong to classify them with the "Right".  In fact, both of them admire Jean Marine LePen and Georges Marchais, the charismatic leader of the French Communist Party until 1994.  The issue for them is not one of "Right vs Left" but one of real opposition versus selling out to the system.Neither Soral or Dieudo have ever endorsed the political program of the National Front or the Communist Party.  What they did do is praise these two forces for being truly revolutionary (in the literal meaning of the word - wanting change) and not a fake opposition.  But if under Marchais and Jean-Marie LePen the Communist Party and the National Front were truly speaking "for the masses", then after their retirement both parties turned into tools for the elites.  I fully agree with that analysis.  This is why I say that today the only real opposition in France is E&R.As for Zemmour, he is a nostalgic of the past and therefore neither a revolutionary nor a supporter of the current system which his views can only mildly annoy, but not threaten.Can Dieudo and Soral, unlike Zemmour, threaten the system?I strongly believe so.  But in the long run only.For one thing, they are appealing to the disenfranchised masses which are, by definition, the majority.  The rest of the political scene in France only appeals to the elites.  Second, while the Establishment tries as hard as it can to create fake non-issues (homosexual marriages) while obfuscating the vital ones (poverty and exploitation), E&R brings the real problems to the forefront of its discourse.  Furthermore, while the official (Masonic) French ideology is both anti-Christian and anti-Muslim E&R is pro-Islam and pro-Christian.  This is why the key slogan of E&R is "la gauche du travail la droite des valeurs" (the Left of Labor and the Right of Values) meaning that its economics are very similar to those of traditional Socialist parties whereas its ethics and morals are more typical of the ones of religious conservatives (Zemmour, by the way, would disagree with both, even though he likes to quote Marx and defends Christian ethics).  In fact, I would argue that the ideas of Soral, Dieudo and E&R appeal to moral categories taken straight out of Christian, Islamic and Marxist traditions and that they recombine and adapt them to modern realities.  This is, I think, very, very interesting stuff, especially for me since this is also what I see happening in Russia.Solzhenitsyn and PutinResistance to Empire can take many forms. Sometimes, this resistance is armed, as in the case of Hezbollah.  Sometimes this resistance is purely ideological, as was the case with Gandhi.  But sometimes, it begins on the purely ideological level and eventually becomes incarnate in a very material way.  For example, I would argue that today's continuator of Alexander Solzhenitsyn's ideas is Vladimir Putin.  And yet, Solzhenitsyn will be remembered as possibly the biggest foe of the KGB whereas Putin was an officer in that organization.  These are the amazing paradoxes of history which show over and over again that the power of ideas is far stronger than the power of the state and its institutions.Today, Soral and Dieudo are in a position very similar to the one of opponents in the former Soviet Union.  Sure, the methods have changed, and there is no GULag in France (for the time being), but the French courts are now clearly used to silence dissent.  How long until they begin being used to sent thought-criminals to jail?Soral, Dieudo are typically French phenomena and so is their resistance.  But they are also part of a much larger planetary Resistance to Empire.  They are part of the same struggle as Evo Morales, Ali Khamenei, Vladimir Putin or Xi Jinping.  Just like these men, they are not always right, and we don't have to endorse all of their views.  But I think that is is vital to recognize them as fellow resistants and, therefore, comrades.The Saker 

‘If a kid had a toy gun at you, what would you do?’ Dennis Rodman speaks to RT about Ferguson

Former basketball star and NBA record-holder Dennis Rodman spoke to RT about the latest unrest in Ferguson, the jury’s verdict in the case, and his attitude towards Russians. Via::

The Free Trade Agreements: The Asia

http://www.globalresearch.ca/?p=5416888

Official

by Alexander Mercouris" - "This is the clear meaning of the statement TASS reports that a senior of the Chinese Foreign Ministry has made. The fact that China recognises the Crimean referendum means that de facto (and surely before long de jure) China has recognised Crimea's unification with Russia.  Note also that the has expressed support for Russia's Ukrainian policy.http://en.itar-tass.com/world/760944This is the clearest statement from an source (as opposed to the news media) of China's position viz the Ukrainian crisis that China has made to date.  Because it is made by an rather than a minister it has gone almost unnoticed.  However that is how China works: statements of this sort are first floated in the media, then made formally but at a relatively low level, following which they become uncontested policy.  Suffice to say that it is inconceivable that the in question would have spoken out in this way without clearance from the very highest levels of the Chinese government and the fact that in his conversation to TASS he actually quotes comments made by Xi Jinping in telephone conversations with Putin puts that question beyond doubt.I have always felt that the Chinese dimension in influencing Russia's Ukrainian policy is consistently underestimated.  I am sure that every single step Moscow has taken since the start of the Ukrainian crisis has been discussed and coordinated with Beijing at the highest possible level.  We should not make the mistake of thinking that the only conversations between Putin and Xi Jinping are those that are ly or publicly  reported.  The Chinese do not want to be seen taking an active or public role in the Ukrainian crisis - which formally speaking has nothing to do with them - but given the importance of China's support for Russia and the importance of Russia to China, it is a certainty that the two sides have been working closely together with each other and that they are discussing every aspect of this crisis all the time.  Knowledge that he has China's support is one reason for Putin's confidence in his dealings with the US and the Europeans.The need to coordinate with Beijing does however place certain constraints on Moscow's actions.  Again I am sure that one reason amongst many why Russia has been wary of intervening actively in the Donbas or of formally recognising the various votes there is because it knows that doing so too obviously or too hastily would not be welcome in Beijing.  China is traditionally very wary of independence declarations (a policy restated with specific reference to the Ukraine by the quoted by TASS) not because it is worried about Xinjiang or Tibet (where the situation is fully under control) as the west alleges but because it does not want to create a precedent for Taiwan.  Again I do not think many people especially in the west but also in Russia understand what a sensitive issue for China Taiwan is.  Suffice to say that a key reason for the Sino Soviet split of the 1960s was precisely Mao  Zedong's anger at what he correctly saw as a lack of support from Moscow over Taiwan.That does not mean Novorossian independence will not happen or that either the Russians or indeed the Chinese are reconciled to the results of the Maidan coup or to the survival of the present regime in Kiev.  Both countries perceive the sort of staged US backed "revolutions" that the Maidan coup was, as a direct challenge and threat to themselves.  Both countries are almost certainly agreed that the results of the coup in a key Eurasian state must be reversed. Note how the , in the clearest possible sign that he is speaking on behalf of the Chinese government, quotes a previously unreported but very revealing remark Xi Jinping said to Putin in one of their telephone conversations, that "there is no smoke without fire".  No guesses who or what that refers to.  However the joint policy of reversing the effects of the Maidan coup is going to be done incrementally, step by step, for many reasons of which China's concerns about Taiwan are just one. Anyway, to those who think there is some division between Beijing and Moscow both over the Crimean issue and over the Ukrainian crisis generally, this statement from an of the Chinese government should finally and once and for all put that question to rest: there is none.

Is the Ebola Outbreak in West Africa a Biological Proxy War?

Russia announced that they have a vaccine effective against Ebola. From another report in Moscow Times it seems more like they have an effective drug to treat Ebola and not a really a vaccine. The investigative reporter Jon Rappoport (nomorefakenews.com), who have disclosed the fraud behind the HIV-virus and other frauds committed by the BIG PHARMA […]

Poland rejects visa applications by Ukrainians, saying it has to comply with EU law

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=de2_1417206237

Q&A with the Saker by Controinformazione in Italy

Dear friends,I was recently contacted by Anacronista from the website Controinformazione in Italy and we agreed to do a short Q&A which was published today here in Italian. I am posting the original English text of our exchange below.Cheers,The Saker-------Anacronista: Today the contrast between Russian and US foreign policies is striking: on one side moderation, common sense, respect for sovereign states; on the other side coups d'etat, threats, sanctions and lies. Is the contrasting behaviour of the two powers due to incidental political calculations or to a different underlying view of life?The Saker: The first thing to point out is that Lavrov and Putin are extremely well educated men who come from elite institutions: Lavrov from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Putin from the former external intelligence directorate of the KGB. They are far better educated that modern US diplomats. In the past the US also had distinguished diplomats like James Baker, but now they are either total idiots (like Psaki) or arrogant liars (like Powers). The second this is that the USA truly does not have a "diplomacy". After all, US "diplomacy" is just a combination of demands, promises, threats and bombings which do not require any real diplomatic skills. Third, Russia has greatly suffered from the costs of empire, both under the Czars and under the Soviet rule. As a result, Russia does not want to be an empire, or a super power, or a world policeman or a hegemon. All Russia wants is to be a *normal* but, and this is important, a *truly sovereign* country. In order to achieve that Russia has a few basic fundamental rules she really believes in:Turn your enemies into neutrals, your neutrals into partners, your partners into friends and your friends into allies. The US can only conceptualize two categories: vassals and enemies.Security is always and necessarily collective. If your neighbor does not feel safe, then you also are not safe. The US only feels secure then it can threaten everybody, as a result of which, everybody feels threatened.International law really matters to the Russians. Why? Because they want a multi-polar world and that, in turn, mandates that the "rules of the game" (international law) be upheld. The US wants a unipolar world which, therefore, has no need for international law.For Russia, the use of military forces is the last resort and a failure of diplomacy. For the US the use of force is an integral part of what it calls "diplomacy"What we are dealing with here is a deep civilizational conflict. These are two fundamentally incompatible views of the world, two mutually exclusive civilizational models which cannot coexist, much less so collaborate.Anacronista: What are the substantial differences, if any, between Western capitalism and Russian capitalism? Is Russia run by "markets"?The Saker: No, Russia has a deeply dysfunctional economy. First, Russian interest rates as so high as to completely inhibit most credit for the creation of small to medium size companies. In fact, interest rates in Russia are higher than the profitability of entire sectors of the economy. Second, a huge amount of Russian money leaves Russia every year into offshore accounts and is then returned to Russia in form of "foreign investments". Combine that with the fact that most Russian corporations are incorporated outside Russia (in the UK typically) and you will immediately conclude that the entire economic/financial system in Russia is designed to prevent Russia from diversifying the Russian economy and get off the "energy needle". Russia is also poorly regulated, has a very erratic taxation system, very limited government investments and corrupt courts (hence the use of arbitrage). The Russian market has clear signs of being an oligopoly and this is a major inhibitor to the real potential of the Russian society. Some economist say that the Russian economy is barely turning at 2/3-1/2 of its true potential.On a very different level I would also note that true capitalism has never been part of the Russian culture. Russian culture is far more collective and Russian people are not inspired by worldviews which offer little besides hopes of self-enrichment and the monetization of everything. Russian culture has always been social and social justice is an ideal which still is strong in Russia today while unbridled greed is frowned upon.Anacronista: In Western states, money creation and management are in the hands of private banks such as the FED and the ECB. How does it work in Russia?The Saker: Russia also have a Fed-like Central Bank which can only print Rubles in amounts corresponding to the purchase of dollars. This is a crazy idea. Officially, the Central Bank has a mission to keep the Ruble stable, but in reality all it appears to care about in inhibiting inflation which is a very bad idea, especially in times of recession and sanctions like today.Anacronista: Does Russia plan to extend industrialization and modern infrastructure to all its territory?The Saker: In theory yes. There are plans to re-industrialize and re-develop Siberia, the Russian Far East, Crimea and other regions. Again, in theory there is an import-substitution program being worked upon to begin developing indigenously that which was imported in the past. Major investment programs have been announced to modernize the infrastructure, especially the roads, airports, railways, etc. On paper these programs look terrific, but as long as the Russian Central Bank continues to choke down the Russian economy and the Medvedev Government continues to sabotage Presidential decisions I am not very optimistic. Anacronista: What is Russian view on immigration and integration: how does Russia manage the many ethnicities that make up the immense Federation and the new arrivals from abroad?The Saker: There are many tensions around this issue and lot's of disagreements. Historically, Russia has always been a multi-ethnic state thanks to which 180 different ethnic groups have survived in Russia (compare that with the USA!). Even the so-called "Russians" (roughly 80% of the people) are almost always with very mixed ethnic roots. To be "Russian" is not an ethnic/racial thing. Even Orthodoxy tends to categorize people by their worldview and values and not their biological roots. There are, however, real cultural and religious differences which create tensions: poorly educated and heavily criminalized minorities from the now independent ex-Soviet republics and Wahabi Islam which is very closely connected to terrorism. In response to these two problems, the Kremlin introduced three main policies: support for local economies in depressed regions, support for local law-enforcement and support for traditional Islam (which in the former Soviet Union is never Wahabi). There are also problems with Chinese immigrants but these are mainly local and not nearly as severe as those with immigrants from the South (Caucasus, Central Asia). Anacronista: Drugs, family crisis, social disintegration: to what an extent is Russia affected by the evils that trouble the West, and how is it planning to heal them?The Saker: Russia also has all the problems you list, including drugs, dysfunctional families and social disintegration. The main difference in with the West is that these were at their worst in the horrible 1990s when, as the local joke says, every boy wanted to be a criminal and every girl wanted to be a prostitute (not literally true, of course, but partially true nonetheless). Since Putin came to power these problems have begun a slow but steady process of improvement whereas in the West things are still getting worse with every passing day. The main factor is that the Russian society which in the 1990s wanted to emulate the West has now grown disillusioned and even disgusted with the West and as a result of the the entire western civilizational model is being rejected. A lot of Russians are returning to their historical, civilizational and religious roots (Orthodox Christianity and Islam) while others are looking towards an original "Russian" social/civilizational model. While there is definitely still a class of people who want to be like Europeans, the Ukrainian slogan "the Ukraine is Europe" would have zero traction in Russia. If anything, the western hostility and hypocrisy towards Russia has convinced the vast majority of Russians that the West hold no promise for Russia. I estimate that the pro-western population in Russia is at no more than 5% of the total. Anacronista: Classics are more and more neglected in Western education, thus alienating the youth from their heritage and traditions. What is the relationship between the past, the present and the future in Russia?The Saker: Very interesting but also very painful question. The Russian past has been very tragic, especially in the 20th century. But even before that. There are still Russians who - like Alexander Solzhenitsyn - say that the deep roots of the Russian Revolution can be found in the 18th century reforms of Peter I. I tend to agree with that. The Russian civilization has been more or less oppressed for no less than 300 years. Yet, Russian cannot simply reject 300 years of her history, take a time machine and return to the Russia of Alexei Mikhailovich. But neither can Russia simply endorse everything which was done in the past 3 centuries. There is a small movement of National-Bolsheviks who basically say that every Czar was good, and Lenin was good, and Stalin was good, and more or less everything Russian is great. But that is nonsense and this ideology has no future. And yet, Russians are also deeply attached to their roots and believe that somebody with no past has no present and no even real future. So the quest is on for a criteria, a worldview, a unifying ideology which would allow Russians to separate the good from the bad and, hopefully, keep the good. I think that nobody in Russia wants yet another revolution or a "Russian Maidan". So rather then revolution, evolution is the order of the day. But Russia needs an evolution towards higher ideals then just greed, profit, wealth and comfort. So far, no real solution has been found to that problem. If you carefully read the program statements of Putin, he does offer a consensus vision which roughly 80% of Russians support: respect for tradition, respect for individual freedom, social solidarity, national sovereignty, respect for the family and the social collective, a quest for social and economic justice and a general endorsement for traditional religions (Orthodoxy, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism). That is, of course, only a beginning, but I personally find it a reasonable and healthy one.

The Scale of Wall Street’s Holdings Are “Unprecedented in U.S. History”: Senate Report

Last Thursday, the U.S. Senate’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, chaired by Senator Carl Levin, released an alarming 396-page report that details how Wall Street’s too-big-to-fail banks have quietly, and often stealthily through shell companies, gained ownership of a stunning amount…

NEO â€" Japanese Sanctions against the Russian Federation

- The real threat is who is really running the show in the US and Europe. Is it the elected leaders, or those who are really behind who gets elected?

The Passing of an Era: Sam Noumoff Dies at 79. Outstanding Scholar and Political Analyst of US Imperialism

For many generations of students who studied politics at McGill University, Sam Noumoff was an iconic figure. He taught courses in political theory and comparative politics that you would be hard pressed to find on the curricula of universities in…

Russia sanctions 'hitting engineers'

Western sanctions against Russia are having an impact on Scots engineering firms, according to a survey.

The US, Canada and the Ukraine refuse to condemn the heroization of Nazism

Sputnik About Carl Bildt’s “Handlers” â€Â" The Brzezinski Family The recently launched Russian news provider, Sputnik, gives, in the article by Daniel Zubov cited below, an interesting review of the Brzezinski Family and their influence on Americas foreign policy. The connection to Sweden through the American Ambassador there, Mark Brzezinski, helps to explain the special role Carl...

Georgians as Expendable as White Rats

- There are now scattered reports of biological weapons being tested on citizens of various countries, including Georgia and some Middle Eastern countries.

Major political faceplant for French Resistance leader Alain Soral

Dear friends, Just a few days after I posted a report about the French Resistance to the Empire, a really sad news came out of France: Alain Soral, the leader of the movement "Equality and Reconciliation" (E&R) was involved in a disgusting and, frankly, pathetic scandal mixing race, ideology and sex.  The story just broke in the French media, the parties disagree on a number of things and Soral is threatening to sue, but between the reports published by the Zionist press in France (JssNews; Elfassiscoopblog) and what was published by the official E&R site, there are a few more or less established facts: for a while Alain Soral had a, quote, "virtual affair", unquote, with an African model called Binti.  This "virtual affair" involved sending each other nude "selife" photos.  Then things went south, they began insulting each other by text messages. Soral's insults included racial ones.  Now, the photos and the insults have become public.  Frankly, I don't feel any inclinations to describe or analyze this psycho-sexual sewer, but those of you interested in the ugly details just need to click on the links above.Soral is now threatening several lawsuits and he promises to release a video where he explains it all.  Maybe.  But unless he tells us that the photos and text messages are all fake, there is nothing he can tell me which would make me change the conclusion to which I have already come: Soral has serious sexual problems.This is hardly surprising, to be honest.  Soral has always said that he was a "dragueur" which in modern politically-correct French refers to somebody who likes to pick up girls.  In plain English this simply means that Soral was sexually promiscuous.  The poor man even wrote a book about that.  Apparently Soral married a lady named "Maylis Bourdenx" (or "Maylis Bonnet") in 1996.  Whatever may be the case, married or nor, Soral is yet another example of the fact that the West is, truly, the most sexually dysfunctional society on the planet and that western hetero-sex is every bit as dysfunctional as its homo-sex.The number of people involved in some kind of sexual scandals simply blows my mind.  From Anthony Weiner to Bill Clinton to the innumerable Latin priests in involved in high profile sex scandals, it seems that this phenomenon is just an integral part of our daily lives.  Because it is, of course.First, let's get one basic myth out of the way.  Sexual promiscuity is not a sign of success" but a sign of frustration.  Why do I say so?  Simple!  Think about it yourself: would you change cars or houses or jobs or places of residence if you were happy where you are?  Of course not.  Folks who constantly have different sexual partners are just seeking to attain a satisfaction which inevitably eludes them.  If they had a truly sexually satisfying partner - why would they ever bother looking for more?!This is why sexual promiscuity is to sex what alcoholism is to wine: not an enjoyment of, or appreciation for, but an addiction which, as any other addiction, is fueled by internal emptiness.  Roger Water perfectly described this feeling in his song "Empty Spaces":What shall we use to fill the empty spacesWhere waves of hunger roar?Shall we set out across this sea of facesIn search of more and more applause?Shall we buy a new guitar?Shall we drive a more powerful car?Shall we work straight through the night?Shall we get into fights,Leave the lights on,Drop bombs,Do tours of the East,Contract diseases,Bury bones,Break up homes,Send flowers by phone,Take to drink,Go to shrinks,Give up meat,Rarely sleep,Keep people as pets,Train dogs,Raise rats,Fill the attic with cash,Bury treasure,Store up leisure,But never relax at allWith our backs to the Wall?Here is a fantastic live version of this song by Roger Waters and Bryan Adams (at his very best):[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f1ZU3qOmAks?rel=0]These "empty spaces"did not come out of nowhere.  They are the direct result of a lifestyle which completely ignores the basic needs of our body, mind and soul.  This is true for the food we eat, the air we breath, the exercise we don't get, the human feelings we don't get to show, the human relations we don't get to experience and, of course, from a completely mistaken notion of what "good and satisfying sex" truly is.  There is so much ego, and pseudo-science, invested in this that I suspect that the true consequences of our sexual inanity will be the last we will look at.  We will stop polluting our planet long before we stop polluting our bodies, minds and souls (and God knows I don't think we will stop polluting our planet anytime soon).To be honest, I feel sorry for Soral. I know that he had a terrible childhood and that his youth was spent with the most degenerate social groups possible.  And I cannot blame him for his "empty spaces" and his desire to fill them with something, even if this something is as pathetic and sterile as a "virtual relationship" via phone and text messages.  But where Soral is a total idiot is that he should have know that this kind of "lifestyle" would blow up in his face.  Did he really think that he could send picture of him nude to a young and poor African immigrant before they would end up in hands ready to pay top dollar for it?  The scary thing is that Soral is very far from being stupid, and that tells you how compulsive and totally out of control his sexual frustrations are.He reminds me of Scott Ritter, another clearly very intelligent man, who also was caught in acts of such an extreme stupidity as to appear completely impossible.  And yet that solid and highly principled Marine specialized in, of all things, intelligence (!) was caught exposing his genitals via webcam to a police officer impersonating a 15 year old child.  Again, besides being a clear sign of sexual frustration and pathology, how utterly stupid is that?The very first rule for anybody involved in any public affairs nowadays is to live a squeaky clean live, especially in sex related matters.  The second rule should be, and if you really cannot engage in "normal" (i.e. socially approved) sex, then don't do that anywhere near any electronic device.  Soral and Ritter both knew that.  And yet they did it.  Does that really tell us anything about them?  Are we better?  Stronger?  Smarter?  Healthier?I don't think so.Soral and Ritter are not "perverts" - that explanation is just too easy and really it explains nothing.  I submit a very different explanation: like all of us, Soral and Ritter have a specific human nature which is highly susceptible to its social environment and when that environment fosters dysfunction most humans will end up displaying pathological and compulsive behavior.  Being an Orthodox Christian, I also believe that our current human nature is a "fallen" one, and that our real/original human nature was lost as a result of Adam's sin and that, in turn, tells me that asceticism and resulting self-control are not "luxuries for monastics", but a vital necessity for every single human being.  But even if we set asides religious arguments, I think that there is absolutely overwhelming evidence of the fact that most, the vast majority really, of people in the West are sexually frustrated and miserable.  Our "modern" and "progressive" society has completely failed to yield its promise of sexual satisfaction.  Oh sure, it does serve us cheap and readily available "fast sex" just as it serves us "fast food", but just as fast food is garbage for our bodies, fast sex is garbage to our bodies, minds and souls.Look at Soral's body: the guy is 56 years old, yet he is "healthy as an ox" as the Russian expression goes, clearly in a fantastic shape.  But psychologically decades of "fast sex" have made him "psychologically morbidly obese".  If anything, the Soral fiasco proves, yet again, that in a health-obsessed society we ignore the needs of our mind and soul only at great peril to ourselves.What will happen next?In theory the sexual problems of Alain Soral say nothing about his views or about the Resistance to Empire he embodies today.  That is in theory.  In reality, this is a massive political faceplant which Soral's enemies will use and exploit to the maximum.  After all, for them it is much more fun to focus on Soral's sexual problems than to focus on his ideas.  Sure, his hardcore supporters will probably forgive him for letting his frustration endanger the future of the Resistance to Empire in France, and it's not like Francois Hollande or Nicholas Sarkozy are any less sexually dysfunctional. The one issue which nobody will look into is why is it that men who apparently have it all are clearly so out of whack sexually?  Feminists will tell us that men think with their genitals and not their brains, progressives will condemn a repressive moral order, conservatives will deplore the lack of "Christian morals" and nobody will ever dare ask whether a satisfying and fulfilling sexual life is possible and, if yes, in what circumstances?In conclusion, and just for the record, I want to say this.  I have been accused by some of being "anti-gay" for my clearly stated belief that homosexuality is a personality disorder, a psycho-sexual pathology.  I hope that the above will convince everybody that I make no inherent difference between modern homo-sex and hetero-sex: to me their are all equally pathological and contrary to our human nature.  When I look in the world I live I conclude that the Church is correct in saying that there is only one form of sex which is "right": sex in the context of a heterosexual marriage of adults.  This form of sex does not guarantee sexual satisfaction, but at least it makes it possible.  Sexual promiscuity - whether hetero or homo - makes it impossible not because some bishops decided that, but because they correctly identified the needs and characteristics of our human nature.By the way, in Greek the word "sin" (ἁμαρτία) means "missing the target" or a "failure to reach the goal".  Sin is not pissing off some morally rigid god sitting on a cloud who spends his time monitoring our sexual lives.  "Sin" is simply not realizing our true nature and our true potential. Sin is inducing misery in ourselves, whether we realize it or not.  Sin is ignoring our nature and mistreating ourselves.Oh, and one more thing: I hear the voices saying "this blog should be about the Ukraine or politics - not Christian fundamentalist propaganda!!".  Well, for one thing, it's my blog and I do with it whatever the hell I please.  Second, there is a direct connection here.  Russian society is in many ways at least as sexually dysfunctional as the western one.  It has promiscuity, prostitution, marital violence, pornography, mass abortions and even homosexuality.  But there comes the huge difference: in Russia most of the political and intellectual elites deplore that and openly advocate a return to a very different social order.  In the West the political and intellectual elites not only do not denounce these phenomena, they declare them as fully normal.  True, in the USA there is a seizable "Christian" minority which opposes the social consequences of the western "slouching to Gomorrah" but it is deeply reactionary and never looks at the true causes of what it denounces.   So while Russia is post-Communist, she is not, like the West, post-Christian and while the Russian people have yet to decide what their culture should stand for, they at least have decided that the Western model does not inspire them any more.  So if today Russia draws the line at "gay pride" parades in Moscow, this is only a beginning, an obvious point of consensus.  But unless the Empire is successful in its goal of "regime change in Russia", this timid first step will be followed by many more.I did not write all of the above to convince anybody that Russia is right.  After all, I personally don't accept the notion of universal values and to each his/her own and "live and let live" also applies to societies.  If the folks in the West are happy, fine - let them enjoy themselves and who cares that to me the look miserable and frustrated?  My main goal is to bring to your attention the very deep social, cultural, religious and civilizational tensions between the post-Christian capitalist West and post-Communist Russia and to illustrate why the West has so little appeal to Russians.  What you make of my diagnosis is up to you.Kind regards,The SakerPS: for those of you interested by a truly traditional Russian Orthodox view of the the West, please read the transcript of Alexander Solzhenitsyn's 1983 Templeton Address, one of the most important, and therefore most ignored, speeches he ever made.

Putin Says Russia Doing Fine in Face of Tumbling Crude Prices

President Vladimir Putin said Russia will cope with the rout in crude oil after benchmark prices plunged to a four-year low near $70 a barrel.

On Israel/Palestine, New York Time’s Public Editor Seems Reluctant to Heed Own Advice

Did the New York Times publish a photograph of Palestinian children killed by Israeli bombs because it was “trying to arouse pity for the Palestinians”? (photo: Tyler Hicks/NYT) One of New York Times public editor Margaret Sullivan’s recommendations (11/22/14) to…

‘If a kid had a toy gun at you, what would you do?’ Dennis Rodman speaks to RT about Ferguson

Former basketball star and NBA record-holder Dennis Rodman spoke to RT about the latest unrest in Ferguson, the jury’s verdict in the case, and his attitude towards Russians. Via::

Italians May Vote to Leave Eurozone in 2015 Referendum: Five Star Movement

In mid-October, the leader of the Five Star Movement announced that in November his party would launch a petition supporting a referendum on Italy’s exit from the eurozone. A majority of Italians is likely to vote in favor of leaving…

Russia veers toward recession as oil prices fall

Ed Adamczyk NEW YORK, Nov. 28 (UPI) With the price of crude oil falling, analysts say Russia could soon sink into a recession.

Vaccines Don’t Work: Malignant Mumps In Mumps, Measles and Rubella (MMR) Vaccinated Children

A new study finds highly malignant mumps infections in those successfully vaccinated against the virus…    A provocative new study titled, “Epidemic of complicated mumps in previously vaccinated young adults in the South-West of France,” reveals that the MMR vaccine, despite…

Is Washington training an Insurgent Army to “Occupy” Syria?

Is the US planning the occupation of Syria by training an unconventional insurgent invasion force? Think regime change in Syria is off the drawing board? Think again. The bombing of the ISIL or ISIS in Syria is part of a…

A Very Complete Analysis by the Saker of the Crisis in Ukraine

This is the most complete and, in my opinion, also a very correct analysis of the crisis in Ukraine initiated by the Neocons in the US. I don’t know who this “Saker” really is. But I do know that he knows a lot about Russia, USA and the New World Order. Having followed the Saker’s […]

How Russia and Germany may save Europe from war â€" RT

http://rt.com/op-edge/209695-war-russia-nato-missile-defense/

Hillary, Jeb, Rand or does it make a difference anyway?

In my post this morning I failed to realize how many new readers there are on this blog, so I did not repeat things which I had sad many times in the early years of this blog.  Your comments and questions made me realize that I needed to clarify my view of the US political system.First - I see the USA as run by a tiny elite which is good at "pretend democracy" but which makes darn sure that the people vote the "correct" way.  I consider the primaries, conventions, caucuses,and elections themselves as a mix between a farce, a form of entertainment, a re-legitimization of a system and a secular liturgical act (a form of public self-worship).  There is no "democracy" in the US and there probably never was.  However, if the regime does not change, the specific clans within the 1% do fight each other and struggle for control of the regime.Second, there are different clans, interest groups, factions who fight *within* the top 1% and they can, and do, make use of the electoral process not as a means of popular expression, but as a way to impose their agenda and interests.  I often speak of the "old Anglo guard" (best represented by the Bush clan before Dubya) and the "Neocons", but there are many more interest group (oil, banking, military, drug warriors, big pharma, etc.) who all participate in the internal struggle for power.Thus, there is no real difference between the Republicrats and the Demoblicans, they are all part of the same elite, but there are differences between different political figures who are more, or less, aligned with any specific interest group.  Thus Greenwald is correct when he identifies the various groups who would support a Hillary Presidency.  This has nothing to do with democracy, the political parties or even her own views and everything to do with which interest groups she sold out to.Even in the course of a single presidency, these groups can struggle with each other and trigger a change in policies.  Initially, the election of Obama was a victory of the old Anglo guard and a defeat of the Neocons who then came right back in through the back door and ended up re-taking control.[sidebar: I got two college degrees in the USA between 1986 and 1991 and at the time I was pretty close to several conservative think tanks in Washington DC.  I saw with my own eyes how the agents of the Israel lobby, which before that had been aligned with the supposedly "liberal" Democratic party, suddenly realized that the Republicans were a much better host, and how they then began to take control of the previously paleo-conservative think tanks and turned them into Neocon mouthpieces.  It was quite amazing.  First, they funded them.  Then, they influenced the nominations of senior officers and finally, they took them under complete ideological control.  The case study of that kind of "subversion and acquisition" of an Anglo paleo-conservative think tank by Zionist interest groups is what happened to the Ethics & Public Policy Center, but there are many many more].The US elites agree on most goals (world domination, wealth, economic feudalism, etc.) but they can, and do, disagree on methods and priorities.  The Israel lobby wanted a war with Iran.  The old Anglo guard did not.  The latter prevailed.  As long as their interests coincide, they act as one.  But as soon as there is a real danger or a real threat - they begin to "pull" the agenda over to their own interests.Whether it will (Hillary) Clinton vs (Jeb) Bush again or not, whoever wins the presidency will have to continue to preside over the gradual erosion of the US imperial power and thus will have to decide whether the use of force (or threat of use, which is, in many ways, almost the same thing) against Russia can, if not reverse, then at least slow down that process.  At this point whether the US goes to war or not will depend on both the of correlation of the various interest groups inside the 1%ers and on the collective personality (President + advisors) who will be sitting in the White House.This is the moment when having a generally mentally sane Jeb Bush (and his staff)  might be better than a clearly rabid Hillary (and her staff).  This has nothing to do with being "better" or "liberal or conservative" because on all these levels there are not meaningful differences between the Left/Liberal/Democratic side and the Right/Conservative/Republican side: they are all equally for sale, they all represent a pseudo-democracy of "one dollar one vote", they all are a government "by the billionaires for the billionaires" and none of them gives a damn the 99% of the planet or even the 99% of the American people.As for Rand Paul, his function is the same as of Dennis Kucinich: get more votes into their respective parties.  Besides, unlike Kucinich, and even very much unlike his father Ron, Rand Paul is a puppet in the hands of the Israel Lobby.Right now, there is nobody out there representing the interests of the vast majority of the people of the USA.  No "American Putin".  This is both scary and very sad.Anyway, these are my 2cts on this depressing issue.Cheers,The SakerPS: as always, David Rovics put it best:'[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNLVtd5X5Gk?rel=0]

An example of "Russian homophobia"

Malaysia excluded from MH17 probe â€" for ‘not pointing fingers at Russia’?

http://rt.com/news/209759-mh17-investigation-malaysia-excluded/

Mikhail Khazin Q&A with the Saker Community

Dear friends,It is a huge pleasure, and honor, for me to present you today with the Q&A between Mikhail Khazin and the Saker Community.  For those who might have missed it, here it is (including a biography of Mr Khazin):http://vineyardsaker.blogspot.com/2014/10/exclusive-mikhail-khazin-q-with-saker.htmlThis was truly a massive effort, not only on the part of Mr. Khazin to whom I am immensely grateful for taking the time to reply in detail to so many questions, but also on the part of a lot of volunteers from our community.  In the words of the Russian Saker Team Leader, Marina,I just wanted to say couple words about the project and our team.I believe this was first truly communal project. It was done entirely by the fantastic members of our international Saker community. We received over 500 questions from our readership. A group of volunteers helped to sort them through, reformat and edit in a way that allowed us to keep as many original questions as possible while at a same time keep them short and manageable both by M. Khazin and the translators. The volunteer response was overwhelming and very professional. As Russian I cannot overstate my gratitude to all these wonderful people around the world who time and time again demonstrate their compassion and solidarity with Russia. My Motherland once again goes through trying times and so does the rest of the world. We are in it together. We need to stay strong and united in the face of evil who has no nationality and no borders. To fight evil we need to erase borders in our hearts and extend hands to each other and especially to those of our brothers and sisters who are in most need of our love, compassion and support. Thanks Saker for giving us the platform to do it,MarinaI personally share exactly the same feelings of gratitude as Marina and want to join in her expression of thanks. Furthermore, my thanks also go to you, members of our community and readers, because 500 questions is truly a fantastic proof of the vibrancy and involvement.  I am sure that we must have beaten some kind of "interview record" with that kind of questions.Finally, here are the names of those who did the really hard work: Editing Heather, Kristin, Michael, Paul, Patricia, Hugh, Joe Translation Yulia, Gideon, S, MarinaConsidering the importance of this document, I have decided to try to make it as easy to access, copy and distribute as possible.  First, I have made it available in 4 formats: ODT, PDF, HTML and DOCX.  Second, I have uploaded it to both the Internet Archive and Mediafire.  Here are the links:https://archive.org/details/KhazinQAENFinalhttps://www.mediafire.com/#t713dfdpadk0zThird, you will find below the text pasted in from the HTML file.I hope that you will find this Q&A interesting and, if you do, please let us know because we are considering doing something similar with another well-known Russian personality.  If you want this to happen you can do the following: circulate this Q&A and post it wherever you want (I licensed it as "public domain"), link to this post and post your comments and reactions in the comments section below.  Please let Mr Khazin and all those volunteers who worked to make this Q&A in English possible know that you appreciate their dedication.  After all, how often do you get to directly ask a question to a top level expert who truly knows not only Russia, but also all the "behind the scenes"  Kremlin politics?Kind regards to all,The SakerPS: if you repost this Q&A elsewhere, especially if you translate it (which I encourage you to do) please let me know!  **************Central Bank, Banking QuestionsPertaining to the Russian Central Bank. Who owns it and who controls it and who profits from it?  Do foreign interests have a role to play within it and the bank's ability to inject liquidity into the Russian economy? Can the Russian government instruct the Russian central bank in policy decisions? Can they create an alternative to western based financial institutions like SWIFT, Visa etc. to a system based on rubles?How is Russia’s national money supply structured presently and Why is the Russian Central Bank still depending on accumulation of US dollars before issuing Ruble’s and if this policy will change in the future, how will that affect financing of the Russian national economy from domestic sources like from Sberbank instead of relying on foreign investment?T1, Princeton NJMalcolm DonaldJames, CanadaVic, Northern IrelandRoxz, SwedenColin McKay AustraliaAnswerThere is a law that states that the Central Bank is independent of the government. Theoretically, the Central Bank has the right to set its own monetary and money creation policy. However, there are two limitations. The first is the IMF policy. Since the Russian Federation signed an agreement with this organization, the Central Bank sees itself as the main instrument for the implementation of the agreement. Of course, it is largely determined by personalities - while the head of the Central Bank, Gerashchenko, was indeed a distinguished banker and statesman, the Central Bank's policy was relatively independent of external sources; with Ignatiev and Nabiullina the situation has changed and the latter leaders try not to argue with the IMF.The second limitation is the National Banking Council, which includes several representatives from the President Office, government and Parliament. A longstanding Russian Finance Minister, Alexei Kudrin, who is not only a personal friend of President Putin but is also close to the IMF Russian expert, played a key role on the Council until recently.Today, the situation is gradually beginning to change. It is already clear that the old policy of the Central Bank (that reflects the vision of the IMF in its most orthodox form) does not produce the desired effect and there is a growing criticism in the country of the policy of the Central Bank and the government. However, so far, the leadership of the Central Bank is withstanding this public criticism and does not intend to change its policy. At the same time, the government keeps pressure on the Central Bank to achieve specific results for itself. In particular, the devaluation of the ruble in the last two months is largely due to the fact that the government has too optimistically promised economic growth, which is clearly not there. An attempt was made to stimulate it with the Central Bank agreeing to go against its core mandate, which requires ensuring stability of the national currency’The Central Bank’s investment policy is similarly pulled by the opposing forces of IMF rules and the country’s economic needs. During Gerashchenko’s tenure, the Central Bank was actively increasing domestic capital (from late 1998 until 2003, the money stock M2 increased approximately 10-fold relative to GDP, from 4% to 40%, and about 15 times in absolute terms). The post-Gerashchenko Central Bank has been pursuing a strict policy of keeping the ruble from becoming an independent investment vehicle (in compliance with the principles of the Bretton Woods system, in which the dollar should be the only investment source). It has become clear today that there won’t be foreign investment in Russia at a significant scale and therefore it is necessary to stimulate the ruble investment process. However, the current leadership of the Central Bank refuses to take any steps in this direction. Thus there is a reason to believe that the management of the Central Bank will change in the medium term.Gold, Gold currency QuestionsDistinguished Western economists have pointed out that for years naked gold short selling through manipulation of paper contracts have been used to prop up the United States Dollar and Western allied-currencies against the threat of greater depreciation versus gold. Can Russia and China break the West's gold shorting scam? Would this be an effective way for Russia to retaliate against the Western-Saudi economic warfare that is driving down the ruble and oil price?In particular, is there any serious likelihood Russia and China could coordinate to take delivery of large quantities of physical gold at the newly opened Shanghai Gold Exchange in order to create an arbitrage between the fake, naked short created paper gold price on the COMEX London market and in Shanghai, resulting in the end of the COMEX as a serious vehicle for gold price discovery that the central bankers can manipulate? (In other words, breaking the West's quasi-monopoly on 'price discovery' in the precious metals market, of which Russia and China are the world-leading producers).For many years gold analysts like Dr. Jim Willie and 'King World News' have suggested Russia and China have been willing to tolerate the Western manipulation of gold because this has created a fantastic buying opportunity for Russia and China to stockpile the strategic metals at a huge discount. But with the COMEX price being below the Russian if not Chinese mining cost of production at what point do Moscow and Beijing defend their long term gold mining interests (e.g., Magadan miners in Russian Far East) and corporations from predatory undercutting? Does the Moscow economic elite see the gold price as an Anglo-American weak spot, to hit back at the West for trying to drag down the ruble and the oil price?What chances are there of the BRICS nations using a debt-free or gold-backed money system? Will gold replace the USD as the world reserve asset and unit of settlement for international trade?James, USACorto, NetherlandsMcbuffalo, ArizonaNotRelevant, The NetherlandsJames Bond, Australiabob kayAnswerIt had been clear to many economists for a long time that the role of gold in the world will grow and, most likely, will return to its position as a single measure of value. In particular, we wrote about the current crisis back in 2004 in our book "The decline of the dollar Empire and the end of the ‘Pax Americana’.” There's a whole Chapter devoted to the role of gold and its manipulation. However, Russian economic leaders close to the IMF ignored this position at the time. This only began to change in the last couple of years. China has been serious about gold for almost the entire last decade and is now actively preparing for a potential transition to a "gold standard," at least in economic relations between the so-called "currency zones," which, in our opinion, will emerge after the single world dollar system falls apart.But Russia and China cannot stop these manipulations, because the price of paper gold is determined on the speculative dollar markets. They can’t provide "leverage" that would be comparable to that of major U.S. banks that have access to an unlimited issuing resource. The only thing they can do is increase the gap between the price of "paper" and "physical" gold by constantly buying the latter on the world markets. Of course, this increases the instability in the global gold market and creates potential losses for the main "gold dealers" who work with the Federal Reserve on leasing programs, but the degree of imbalances has not reached a critical value yet. It seems to me that the sharp rise in gold prices will start after the burst of the next "bubble" in the US stock market.With regard to the potential price of gold, as I wrote back in the early 2000's, it is determined by a “fork,” the lower limit of which is the gold price in 1980, when it had its local peak after the dollar was decoupled from gold (USA default) in August 1971, and the upper limit of which is the purchasing power of the dollar in the early twentieth century, when gold was actual money. Today this “fork” (in current dollars) is seen somewhere at the level of $ 4,500 - $ 15,000 per Troy ounce.Industry QuestionsAmerican industry is currently oriented chiefly towards weapons production. What danger do you see for Russian industrialization to take the same precipitous path? It will be interesting to see if Russia can solve this modern riddle of the Sphinx: how to fold the economic surplus back into the economy, while the oligarchs are doing everything in their power to prevent such a thing. What safeguards Russia may have against the aggrandizement of power corporate entities, especially militarily oriented ones, as has been achieved in the USA?Who are the groups participating in the discussions to promote the development of Russia industrially and culturally, is it the RAS, Valdai Club, think-tanks, etc? What are the main elements being considered for the proposal? Are foreigners somewhat allowed to participate at some point in the proposal?Canada shares important features of Russia’s new economy such as growing dependence on resource extraction. Both countries are becoming petro-states, more or less rapidly. My question concerns the extent of de-industrialization in Russia. Is it fair to say that industrial development is now geared to servicing the extraction industries and to what extent is this a trend or not? After the savage destruction of Novorossiya by the ATO an investment in the hundreds of millions, if not billions, will be required just to get the region back to where they were before they were attacked. On top of the money required for infrastructure, when separation occurs, Novorossiya will be billed, with some justification, their portion of the national debt. Where will the money come from? What role do you think Russia should play in the financing of the rebuild?juliania New Mexico, USA12 chair fanfrom PatagoniaDa Ric Edmonton, Alberta, Canadarrell Rankin Canada Winnipeg, ManitobaAnswerThe situation with industry in the US in the past couple of years has somewhat improved. There are two reasons: changing energy prices in the US (and here we must say good words for the Obama administration), and the rising cost of production in China. However, the main factor for long-term growth - private demand â€" is in decline. This suggests that growth in the US does not even have a medium-term prospect. The drop in private demand is the main impact of the economic crisis, which has continued since 2008. Nothing can be done here, because the main mechanism of its stimulation - the refinancing of private debt in an environment of a decline in the cost of credit - is no longer working. Recall that the discount rate of the US Federal Reserve, which was 19% at the beginning of the “Reaganomics” policy (the main tool of which was increasing lending to households), declined almost to zero by December 2008. It’s impossible to raise the rate now, because it will bring down the whole pyramid of debt around the world. Today US households consume every year about $3 trillion more than they earn. The situation in the EU is not much better. This means that aggregate demand in the world will be sharply decreasing. In other words, continuing to keep the trading and financial infrastructure of a global system of division of labor won’t be cost-effective. The world will most likely return to regional systems of division of labor. Each such system will have to provide domestic production of basic consumer and investment goods. The territory of their self-sufficiency will be regional, with high enough inter-zonal trade barriers. In this scenario the WTO has no prospects.An investment source for creating (or restoring) the relevant industry will be the issue of regional currencies (in our 2004 book these regional systems of division of labour are called “currency zones”). In this sense, Canada is very different from Russia. Russia, most likely, will be one of the leaders of the “Eurasian” currency zone and will actively participate in the development strategy of the division of labor and emissions in the zone. Canada will be a part of the “dollar” zone with its strategy prescribed by Washington. So if our description of the development strategy in the short-term is true, then Russia and the US will restore their industrial production. In the US, due to a significant fall in demand and the loss of many foreign markets, it will be much easier to do this. Canada, however, will remain a “resource extraction” economy.In general, how the “currency zones” will be configured after a sharp reduction in the global aggregate demand is a very interesting question. In particular, I did not believe the independence referendum in Scotland would result in separation from the UK. However, if the elite of Britain decided to enter the dollar currency zone, then Scotland would almost certainly separate because it is obviously attracted to continental Europe. Canada can see the intrigue with the separation of Quebec revived and its subsequent accession to the renewed EU. But I repeat, all these issues will become relevant only after the sharp fall in aggregate demand. It seems to me that Novorossiya (and Ukraine, like many other countries in Eastern Europe, after the configuration change of the European Union), will be restored using the ruble as the issuing resource. The ruble may remain the national currency of Russia or become, perhaps under a slightly different name, the Eurasian Economic Union currency, which theoretically can include (out of major countries) Turkey, Japan, and United Korea. The last two countries, which are highly oriented towards external markets, will have no other options for regional economic cooperation after the U.S. returns to a policy of isolationism, without which they will not be able to recover their economies.The Russian expert institutions are divided into three large groups. The first comprises the fragments of the ex-Soviet system of the Academy of Sciences. They partly have lost their quality, but until recently were able to maintain a relative independence. It is this independence, especially in the economic sphere that has infuriated the liberal crowd, which tried to completely destroy the Academy of Sciences as an independent public and expert institute. It is possible to work effectively with some institutions within the group; in particular, some of its representatives were among the Russian participants at the recent XVIII Dartmouth Russian-American conference in Dayton.The second group is created and funded, either directly or indirectly, by Western grants (the most famous in the economic sphere is the Higher School of Economics, in Russia known as the “Russian Economic School”). Organizations within this group represent the interests of the grantors, and their authority has lately fallen rapidly.The third group comprises people who try to address the real problems with the money that they can find, bypassing the State. I, for example, am among these people. Among the members of this group are independent (from the international heavyweights) consulting companies and research institutes that were created by real producers, and so on. They have done quite a lot in recent years (in the early 2000s we, for example, created a theory that describes the current crisis), but their “weight” within the framework of the State is quite limited. These institutions or individuals can be very interesting from the point of view of purely informational and even non- monetary interaction. Their influence in Russia will grow strongly.Ruble, Currency Questions In contrast to the US Dollar, how is the Russian Ruble supported by the Russian economy? and its flexibility in working together with the basket of other currencies forming the next world trade mechanism outside of the US Dollar.There has been some talk about giving the Russian state the right to issue currency to fund public infrastructure development and to give low interest loans for business in the productive sectors.  What are the chances of such a thing happening and in a timely manner in the near future? Why don’t Russia revise contracts from countries that sanctioned Russia â€" so that all future transactions for Russian Gas & Oil have to be made in either Gold Bullion and/or Russian Ruble’s? Christian Witting Mandal, NorwayBlue Northern Illinois, USCatrafuse, Timisoara Romaniazerone GermanyAndré Montreal CanadaRicardo Valdivia ChileJH QuébecJulian, MelbourneAnswerAs I have written elsewhere, today’s economic leadership of Russia - the Government and the Central Bank - consider the ruble exclusively within the framework of the Bretton Woods system; as secondary to the US dollar. Accordingly, they hold the economy of Russia open to the world financial system, constrain investment opportunities for the ruble (by overstating the value of dollar-denominated loans) and rely on foreign investment.In this situation, the stability of the ruble is determined by purely speculative factors of global markets: a price of crude oil, capital outflows, foreign investments, and a foreign capitalization of major Russian exporters. However, the situation can change if we establish a domestic ruble investment system, create development institutions that will provide cheap ruble credit to the real sector of the economy, change the tax system from pure raw materials (with high value-added tax) to industrial, and begin to stimulate small and medium businesses engaged in innovation and production.While the ruble is seen as secondary to the US dollar, all the above-mentioned suggestions are highly controversial. As long as a main objective of any business in Russia is to increase its dollar capitalization, get a large dollar loan, place shares on the New York or London stock exchanges or sell something for export, the idea of selling oil for rubles will not be greeted with enthusiasm. First, it is necessary to create a ruble-denominated financial infrastructure, then build a business that is oriented on this infrastructure, and only then start a strict policy for its separation from the dollar system. This in any case will require a major change of personnel of the Russian political elite.Oil QuestionsWill the oil-price war currently being waged seriously damage the Russian economy, or is the Russian economy sufficiently diverse to “weather the storm”? Do the falling price of oil AND the falling value of the Ruble effectively offset each other? Is Russia able and/or willing to take retaliatory measures and what might they be? Is the Russian oil industry dependent on Western technology for its operation?Michael Schaefer Schwerin, Germanyteranam13 from N. CaliforniaRic Edmonton, Alberta, CanadaDick Lenning Canadajc Southern CaliforniaAnswerThe oil topic is always very complex. There is a huge number of factors, comprising the short-term (increasing the oil production from Libya and partial lifting of sanctions against Iran), medium-term (development of new, more expensive oilfields, and shale “revolution”, etc.) and long-term (change in economic structure and in energy technology). No concurrent view about this problem exists, so it is needless to talk about long-term trends, which, undoubtedly are present, but barely known. The short-term trends, including the recent downturn in prices, will cost the “organizers” quite a lot if they develop against medium- and long-term trends.  From the macroeconomic prognosis (it has been revised many times within the past 10 years, but the core components were set at the beginning of 2000s, that is why we trust it) the main macroeconomic trend of the next decade will be the division of the world into currency zones. Each zone will have its own price formation mechanism (as was the case in the 70-80s in “Western” and Soviet economic zones). Therefore the drop in oil prices prepares Russia’s economy for different day-to-day realities rather than merely damaging it.  I’d like to point out that Russia invested surplus profit from the sale of oil into assets in the West. Therefore the decrease in profits will rather bring problems to the US, in whose treasuries the oil money was being allocated. Our budget, even accounting for capital outflow, is in surplus. There are problems with investment resources, but they could be overcome if the economic policies are changed. Retaliatory measures are rather political. By the counter sanctions Russia shows that this is not the way to treat allies. And if they are not allies, then are they enemies? In other words, does the US push Russia into an anti-American union with China? Certainly, the union with China is a disputable matter, but if there is nobody to talk to in the European Union (where the situation can change, just look at Marine le Pen in France and Viktor Orbán in Hungary), if the political elites of the EU are subservient to Washington, and if the U.S. behaves inappropriately, then what are the options?Sanctions have shown that the US these days is impossible to negotiate with. It means that the matter is not whether Russia can do without American technologies or not; in fact, it is about how it needs to proceed without them. If the economy were healthy, then while Russia would resolve all her current problems, the US would go forward, but amid sagging demand… The US will likely go backwards; this is a standard expectation amid long crises. Sure, the problems of Russia won’t be resolved on their own, it is necessary to update the economic policy. On the whole, sanctions do not constitute a critical matter for the time being. They even can be increased, but there is no guarantee that it will not precipitate a crisis in the US.  SanctionsDavid Northern CaliforniTom Mysiewicz Reedsport, ORRhysaxiel Bordeaux, FrancePaul from TokyoR-27 ER/ET Santiago, ChileQuestionWhat effect will sanctions have on the Russian economy over the next few years? Will they lead to better integration with the BRICS economies and other non-Western countries and how could this help Russia to deal with the sanctions regime? Will the sanctions ultimately provide the catalyst for the development of an alternative reserve currency?AnswerI’ve already addressed part of this question so I’ll take the opportunity to refine what I’ve said before. Regarding the use of a different currency, this is already decided â€" There will be one, probably more than one. There is no other way to support investment, apart from by issuing regional currency and it should go without saying that ‘Whoever pays the piper calls the tune’ To put it another way, If and when regional these regional currency issuing centres appear it will quickly become clear who are ‘patriots’ and who are ‘collborators’. It’s all quite straightforward: If you export capital, the destination country will receive the investment. It will become clear quite quickly It’s a completely different matter why the United States chops off the branch on which it is sitting (ie. stimulating the creation of alternative reserve currencies). The answer is similarly straightforward. They simply can’t conceive of their own collapse. However this belief is not simply a matter of idealistic ‘American Exceptionalism’ (We are the dominant, thus we shape history, not the otherway round), but it is also a belief held by the elite, as it forms a critical tool of social governance. Furthermore, if we admit that the official economic doctrine simply doesn’t acknowledge the crisis (To be more exact, it is impossible for the theory to recognise the crisis as the theory lacks the terms of reference to describe the cause) then the crisis actually becomes inevitable, if not inescapable: The economics are themselves founded on axioms which themselves are impelling the economy to catastrophe. There is nothing more to say here. ‘Those whom the gods want to destroy, they first make mad’The BRICS, moreover is a pretty artificial phenomemon, dreamt up by Goldman Sachs, the famous investment bank for purely commercial reasons. (In fact to issue new securities onto the market). From our side the BRICS countries look like the leaders of regional economic zones (Brazil and South Africa in one (‘Southern’). Russia (‘Eurasian’), China with its own Chinese and India with its own national zone, given its huge population. It looks likely that the Indian zone will most closely follow the Eurasian Zone. In these zones co-oporation will increase as will the attempts of the United States to solve their internal problems by forcing other countries to pay their debts, using the institutions and frameworks set up under the Bretton Woods which established the dollar as the sole reserve currency. These efforts of the United States are only likely to speed up the process of regional integration. QuestionIn the absence of exchange controls, has consideration been given to creating a split domestic-foreign ruble to support the currency and minimise the impact of sanctions and of commodity and currency speculators?AnswerRussia has a whole collection of legislation to regulate its currently which are simply not ative at the moment because their activation would contradict the ideology which drives the financial elites. There is the mechanism of enforced conversion of foreign revenues (Set at zero percent at the moment). There are limits on declared FX positions and other FX regulations which are similarly not active. I am not at all sure that new legislation is required, those which exist are wholly sufficient should the will be therr to activate them.I have a suspicion that the government and the Central Bank (and this refers a united ideological, commercial and political ‘team’ which are labelled by the media as ‘Liberals’, although the term potentially misleading), who promised the national political leadership economic growth although were unable to maintain it, have decided to resolve the situation by devaluation. However they simply don’t understand economics, rather they do not understand that devaluation will only benefit GDP in teo specific cases: Either there is a large amunt of idle capacity (like in 1998), or there is a large amount of freely available credit. At the moment there is neither. FX investments are not profitable and no one will invest. As for the ruble the central bank has simply refused to open up the credit market. This means that there can be no positive consequences from devaluation only negative ones. The most obvious will be a collapse in living standards amongst the normal population as the majority of consumer goods are imported. This brings us to the hypothesis that the governance of the central bank is in cahoots with Washington with the shared aim of subverting Putin. The hypothesis is already mainstream in the Russian Media. QuestionIs there enough political will and influence inside the Kremlin and the Russian Government to launch agricultural modernisation and improvement projects given that sanctions have been imposed on agricultural imports?AnswerAt the moment the Kremlin is making demands regarding the state-led modernisation of agriculture which contradict the Governments ideology. Naturally this leads to open sabotage. This is absolutely clear both in the investment environment (The government directly is responsible for the flow of investment but actually plays the opposite role at the moment) and in the implementation of the Russian payments system as just one example of many. If the kremlin has the political will to change the government then the situation will improve and with that, agriculture. If not the situation will continue to deteriorate. QuestionIn your recent appearance on TV with Sergei Glazyev, you suggested that the use of sanctions by the US was a sign that the current system was breaking down. Can you elaborate on what you mean? AnswerI have shown above that the current political situation in the United States will lead to the intensification of problems for the United States itseld, most obviously in the destruction of the dollar as the global currency. If you see that in order to sustain one of the ‘rules of the game’ that this can only be done at the expense of other rules then it is abundantly clear that the rules are no longer relevant and that they need to be changed. QuestionIt appears that the economies of some countries that have followed the US lead in sanctions are being affected. Do you believe the US has promised to subsidize the losses of its allies? Why do you believe these countries have been willing to risk their economies?AnswerNo, the US will be giving money to no-one. Those countries that have acted against their own interests have done so as their elites have been effectively captured by the US. It’s no secret and in fact many write in the independent European media that it is impossible to make a career in politics with support from the US. The only ones therefore who can have a career are those frimly ‘on the hook’. Often the United States will create that hook themselves (Profitable contracts, grants, sometimes bribes and even blackmail). It’s not surprising that they control the entire extent of the EU, eavesdrop on all telephone call etc etc. It just needs the exposure of an affair, a few hundred euros of income hidden from the tax authorities or a recording of an indiscrete telephone call (maybe criticising the Gay Parade) â€" they would all be enough to, when exposed to the national press, to deprive an individual of his social status or a significant part of his income. Who would go against that?There were a lot of scare stories in the 90s about the ‘Stasi’, who allegedly held records of every citizen of the German Democratic Republic. We now understand that, in comparison with the practices of the United States now that this period was actually an unexpected utopia of personal freedom. To give examples, The Stasi may have known who slept with whom, but it did not have recordings of discussions held during these intimate rendezvous. Ask yourself: Is it pleasant to think that there are people who can, without oversight, scrutinise recordings directly relating to your personal life? Furthermore are their many people on this earth who would not be vulnerable to blackmail in their personal life? And how many people are there really who would refuse to the the bidding of the United States knowing that such information is not only in their hands but ready to be used against them? QuestionWhat could be the response of Russia if the situation with the oil prices, sanctions, economic warfare and military pressure becomes critical? How will it mobilize its allies and how could it strengthen its economy and military, especially the air force and missile defense?AnswerWell Russian has practically no allies, if we think of them in the sense like there were in 1939. Belarus, Kazakhstan and maybe a couple of other small countries. However there a lot of countries that understand that the United States is single handedly destroying the world order and with it global security (This is exactly what Putin said in his ‘Valdai’ speech in Sochi). There are also people in the United States who understand this. Morover the recent mid-term election results, a week ago, in the United States clearly showed that there are people, especially in the older generation, who without having a depe knowledge of the particulars feel that the current elites in the US are leading the world to catastrophe. We would simply hope that the world will not be led to catastrophe.TradeVic, Northern IrelandSong, CanadaGagarin Thespaceman Cape Town, South AfricaQuestion: Eurasian UnionWhat do you foresee in terms of the evolution of the Eurasian Union, both in terms of internal economic/political dynamics and its relations with other states (and in particular the US/NATO/EU bloc)? Does it have the possibility to expand outside of the former Soviet Union? Are other regional cooperation organizations such as the CIS and CSTO still relevant?AnswerAs I have already said, according to our theory the world could split into several monetary zones â€" more or less independent systems of divisions of labor. The Eurasian Union is one such zone. In a long-term outlook it may include such prominent countries as Turkey, Japan and United Korea. The last two have no choice: the U.S. and the EU won’t purchase their produce, and they don’t want to be friends with China. So, the Eurasian Economic Union has a promising future, but it also means that we need to work hard to achieve positive results. Questions: European TradeIn the past much has been made of a “Lisbon to Vladivostok” trade zone. What do the parameters of such a zone look like, and given the current hostility of the EU towards Russia, is there any realistic prospect of making it a reality in the near- to mid-term? What circumstances could make this more viable in the future?AnswerI think there is no such prospect as of today. The situation in Ukraine has shown that the current EU leadership will not take Russia’s interests into consideration. Any attempt to discuss these interests causes a torrent of statements blaming Russia for “imperial politics”, “restoration of the USSR” and so on. We can argue about Germany and France being outright blackmailed by the Baltic states and Poland, the role of Washington etc., but the fact is that in its current configuration the EU and Russia cannot be “friends” (in the broad sense of the word). We can resume such discussions if a reconfiguration of the EU takes place and the Eastern European countries leave the EU. Question: Payments/SWIFTOne of the purportedly heaviest weapons in the US/EU sanctions arsenal would be to cut Russia off from the SWIFT payments settlement system. Much has been made of efforts to create an internal system or to link with China’s system. What are the challenges facing Russia as it seeks to end its reliance on this particular Western system, and what is a realistic timeline for implementation?AnswerThis could have been implemented promptly, but the Central Bank has sabotaged all the efforts. As of today, nothing has been done, so we will have to return to this topic when the Central Bank has new leadership. The current leadership won’t do anything in this direction.Geopolitics & Foreign Relations Question: Russia and relations with BRICs/Emerging MarketsRussia has been very clear that in light of the West’s aggression that it would redouble its efforts to form an alternative geopolitical grouping, both among emerging markets generally and China specifically. Can you comment on:Which countries (particularly among the BRICs) are likely to support Russia going forward?China is probably the most critical relationship for Russia going forward â€" however given the often strained relationship between the two, many are skeptical of the ability to form a true partnership. Why is today different?Russia has been actively seeking to expand its trade links with Emerging Markets generally and the BRIC nations specifically. Where do you see the best opportunities for Russia in terms of expanding trade links with these nations or even creating more formal/multinational trade structures? Along these lines, do other EM nations share Russia’s interest in potentially de-dollarizing global trade? Is there any chance Russia and/or others actually de-dollarize and, if so, what are the potential benefits and risks to Russia?Emmanuel from Ames, Iowa. USAAnand from IndiaNotSoFast from LuxembourgAnswerI’ve already said something about it. All the questions above imply the preservation of the present Bretton Woods system and describe possible (or hardly possible, if not impossible) scenarios for developments in the world. However, according to our concept Russia and China won’t form a single alliance, they will be leaders of two different regional alliances â€" one is the more centralized (China) while the other more democratic. Today’s convergence between China and Russia is not due to the fact that they foresee their common future, but for the reason that they consider existing model unsustainable. The U.S. tries to describe the Russian and Chinese policies from the perspective of sustaining of the current order. This results in a fairly contradictory picture. Once seen from the right point of view, the picture becomes clear. By the way, according to this worldview the U.S. becomes a regional leader just like Russia and China or, let’s say, Brazil. Question: EuropeEven if Russia turns towards Asia and the Emerging Markets, Europe will remain a critical part of Russian geopolitical strategy. In light of Europe’s current stance, is there anything Russia can do to improve relations (short of unacceptable concessions)? How does Russia manage around the virulently anti-Russian bloc led by Poland, the Baltics and (Western) Ukraine?David Vienna, AustriaCorto Netherlands, Serb origin123abc GermanyAnswerI’ve already explained that friendship between Russia and today’s European Union is impossible as long as the U.S. likes it, but this is just for a while, because as soon as safety considerations become the forefront concerns, the U.S. will most likely change its position. What happens to the current elites of the main anti-Russian countries seems to be interest to no one; they [elites] will have to go away, because they won’t be able to change their rhetoric, which will make it impossible for Russia to deal with them. For the time being Russia has nothing to talk about with the European Union for various reasons. The first one is rather obvious: trying to find a consensus whithin the framework of the European Union, the general position of this organization will always be strongly anti-Russian. The second one is that Brussels doesn’t have an independant position; it pursues the Washington’s policy. The third reason is that the current European Union has no future. We need to discuss this issue in detail. If we place the current European Union on the USSR’s timescale, it can be compared with the period of 1989-1990. The problems are the same. Certain rules were adopted in the context of certain historical, financial and economic situation, and then later codified. Today economic and historic conditions have changed, but it’s nearly impossible to amend legislative policies. Each specific issue might be settled, although it’s unclear when, but there are tens of thousands of those issues and the time is extremely limited. The only chance to accomplish something is to abolish all them at once or, in other words, to dissolve the European Union. It can be assembled again, but the re-assembling will be done according to new regulations. In particular, it can be said that Eastern Europe won’t be part of the “new”European Union. That’s for sure. It has no industry and thus presents no value. There was a political need to “tear them off” from the USSR/Russia and then feed them (to smooth the negative effect from renouncing socialism). Today’s youth doesn’t remember socialism, it means that it is okay to just dump those people and let them survive on their own. They are not of any interest. As we know from the European history of the nineteenth century, they will sink into extreme poverty.But, I repeat, those are their problems. Coming back to the original question… It’s foolish to make arrangements with the European Union in such environment. That’s why it’s necessary to build our own system of labour division without taking into account the interests of the European Union. If Russia has decided to start building import substitutions, it is simply needs to introduce counter sanctions to a relevant commodity group, since the EU and the U.S., by pursuing sanctions policy, have burried all the norms of the World Trade Organization. Question: RussiaGiven the lack of popular support domestically for the liberal/Atlantacist agenda, how do they continue to retain a power bloc within Russian politics? On the other hand, how do the Eurasian Sovereigntists envision ensuring economic growth, with so many autarkist/state capitalist models having shown severe weakness in recent years? What factor are Great Russian nationalists likely to play going forward, in particular the more radical/national socialist types?Kermit Heartsong San Francisco Bay Area, Author, Ukraine: ZBig's Grandchessboard & How The West Was CheckmatedAnswerFirst of all, these people (“liberals”) control a considerable part of Russia’s property; second, they are under the protection of the USA; and third, from the point of view of the political elite, they undertook important tasks such as making agreements with the world’s financial system, investments, and economic growth. Today it has become clear that there is no economic growth, there will be no investments, and the USA are not treating us as partners. It means that the “liberals” have lost the political support and will be forced out of the political arena. The main question is: how fast this process is going to be.As for the USA, they have already realized that they did something wrong. The problem is that the Russian “liberal” team has emerged from the privatization that was a grand theft. Today in Russia the words “liberal” and a “thief” are synonyms. In this sense, for instance, a European court ruling on “Yukos” to exact $50 bln is a grave political mistake on the part of the West because everyone in Russia knows beyond doubt that “Yukos” was stolen. The people, who bought it, were fully aware that it was a stolen property and thus no one owes them anything. In other words, for the vast majority of the Russian public the court decision is the clear evidence that the only interest of the West in relation to Russia is to take away (to loot) the assets that belong to the people (the government). That is, the western elite, including its legal system, deliberately make decisions that favor “their own”, even though those people are professed thieves. This is a hard blow to the trust towards the USA and EU; the blow is even harder than the sanctions.As far as the nationalists are concerned, there is a colossal difference among them. There are three large nationalist groups in Russia: Russian nationalists (in a way, they are similar to Ukrainian Galician nationalists, although, of course, they are more decent so far as methods and slogans are concerned); the national and religious nationalists (including Muslim nationalists in the ISIS style), and imperial nationalists (the ones who want to revive the great state and who don’t care about national differences among its citizens). The latter are divided into monarchists, communists and “neoliberal” capitalists who want to build a “true” capitalism that is independent of the west. It is impossible to understand who will win considering the complex processes that are going on in the country. Some of them can form local alliances, but they all have different objectives. That means that a separate set of relationships need to be build with each of these groups. At the same time, there is no point in counting on liberals, in spite of their current power â€" they have no electoral potential, they will at most receive 3-5 % of votes. They had illusions that a new generation would grow up not remembering the privatization. But the new generation faced the situation when all the “upward paths of vertical growth” are chock-full of children of those liberals and of “siloviki” (national security) they have raised. This is why it is inevitable that new political powers in Russia will be anti-liberal, or anti-West. “Navalnys” have no chance â€" they defend wrong positions. The West, if they want to have relations with Russia, has to become aware of this situation and correct it. Right now they don’t want to do that, which means that there are no positive prospects.

How The Russian Liberals Became “The Fifth Column”

The liberals in Russia are deserved casualties of the crisis in Ukraine. Their numbers are dwindling and only the most “hard-core” remains loyal to their orientation to the West. They have also got a new stamp as “the Fifth Column”. I have noticed the liberal exodus among many of my friends and it is confirmed in […]

Drone Crashes and Collisions: Are “Civilian” Drones Endangering Aeroplanes and Helicopters?

In June, Emily Chow, Alberto Cuadra and Craig Whitlock reported in the Washington Post that more than 400 large U.S. military drones crashed in major accidents worldwide between Sept. 11, 2001, and December 2013. The Washington Post identified 194 drone…

Poland is Blowing in the Wrong Direction

Poland’s Foreign Minister compares his country’s relationship with USA to a “blowjob without getting paid”. In a taped “over a dinner conversation” with Jacek Rostowski, a former Polish Minister of Finance, Poland’s FM Radoslaw Sikorski allegedly expressed his frustration as … “We will get a conflict with both Russians and Germans, and we’re going to think […]

How The Russian Liberals Became “The Fifth Column”

The liberals in Russia are deserved casualties of the crisis in Ukraine. Their numbers are dwindling and only the most “hard-core” remains loyal to their orientation to the West. They have also got a new stamp as “the Fifth Column”. I have noticed the liberal exodus among many of my friends and it is confirmed in […]

The Reasons Why Russia Will Not Invade Ukraine

Russia will not invade Ukraine and here are the reasons. A lot of energy is right now spend on trying to get Russia more involved with the civil war in Ukraine. The New World Order cabal wants it because they want NATO to get a reason to come to the defense of the new government they […]

Israel’s “Democracy” Becomes Just Jewish

66 years after the establishment of the State of Israel, even the most ubiquitous term employed to describe the political nature of Israel as a “Jewish democratic state” is no longer valid. The Netanyahu government and its right-wing coalition partners…

Eurosatory â€" The Largest International Land and Air Land Defence and Security Exhibition

Eurosatory - the largest international land and air land defence and security exhibition was very interesting and informative.

Hi

Electronic equipment, including hard drives and a device operating the helicopter carrier’s communications system, has been stolen off the Mistral sp built for Russia in the French port of Saint-Nazaire. Via:: -tech gear stolen from Russia’s Mistral warsp in France

There are no Nazis in the Ukraine?

This photo comes from a Polish forum and has reposted by Colonel Cassad.Meet the new US, NATO and EU "allies"QED.The Saker

NEO

- "Mr. Stachnio has a great review of the 650 Western color revolution NGOs operating in Russia that are funded with deficit spending US taxpayer dollars."

Sputnik About Carl Bildt’s “Handlers” â€" The Brzezinski Family

The recently launched Russian news provider, Sputnik, gives, in the article by Daniel Zubov cited below, an interesting review of the Brzezinski Family and their influence on Americas foreign policy. The connection to Sweden through the American Ambassador there, Mark Brzezinski, helps to explain the special role Carl Bildt and the Swedish Foreign Ministry played in the […]

NEO â€" Russian

- You won't read anything like this in Western media as it conflicts with their fairy tale of spreading peace and democracy when proxy terrorism is the new game of choice.

The US, Canada and the Ukraine refuse to condemn the heroization of Nazism

It is often argued whether the Ukrainian junta is Nazi or not.  I would strongly argue that even though Poroshenko did not come out, make a Nazi salute and declare "I am a Nazi" all the signs point to the conclusion that the regime in Kiev has its ideological roots in the Nazi past.  The latest example of that "filiation" can be found in this absolutely amazing event last week:  only three countries - the US, Canada and the Ukraine voted against a UN Resolution condemning the heroization of Nazism.  The EU was not much better: it abstained.  This development is so crazy, so insane, that it is important to have access to the original document which was voted on.Here is the full text of the Resolution:http://daccess-dds-ny.un.org/doc/UNDOC/GEN/N14/604/26/PDF/N1460426.pdfYou can also get this text from here:http://www.mediafire.com/view/94n40m3x00dr355/N1460426.pdf Here is the official voting record: http://www.un.org/en/ga/third/69/docs/voting_sheets/L56.Rev1.pdfTo me, this is disgusting beyond belief.  Here we have two countries who try to positions themselves as the most pro-Israeli on the planet (the US and Canada) and the EU which has even passed laws making not only Nazi propaganda illegal, but jailing those who would dare investigate the mass murder of Jews by the Nazis (the so-called 'Holocaust').  And yet these putatively anti-Nazi and "democratic" countries are now refusing to condemn the heroization of Nazism not so much because they particularly like Nazis, but because they want to "protect" the Ukrainian junta.  As for the Ukrainians themselves, they have suffered more from Nazis then any other country or ethnic group, and yet they also refused to condemn the heroization of Nazism.  This makes a mockery not only of all their so-called principles and values, it also is an act of obscene disrespect for the millions of Ukrainian murdered by the Nazis.  There is one good thing about all this: it shows clearly and unequivocally how much the western elites truly hate Russia and that this hate clearly trumps any other considerations or values.Russian disgustFor the past few days, or weeks, really, I have seen more and more signs of total Russian disgust with the West.  If, in the past, Russian diplomats and politicians were mostly trying to sound polite, now they are openly expressing their disgust.  For example, they are now openly saying the Europe does not have a foreign policy or an opinion, that Europe is just a subservient colony of the US.  As for the US, the Russians are now openly saying that this entire Ukrainian crisis was just a pretext and that the US are really out there to submit Russia.  Putin said that openly last week, adding that nobody had every succeeded in subduing Russia and neither would the USA.  This goes further than words, Russia has already announced that she was going to boycott the 2016 Summit on Nuclear Security.  This became known when the Russian informed the other members of this Summit that Russia would not participate in its preparatory work.Sergei Lavrov also made a remarkable speech today, but since the pathetic website of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs does not even bother providing a translation on the same day,  we will have to wait before I can post it here.The Saker

Before hitting the road :

Dear friends,I am about to hit the road and do what I like most: jump in the car with my wife, leave everything behind, and spend a couple of days in the Florida wilderness.  God willing, we will be back on Friday.In the meantime, I want to leave you with a few short notes:1 Podcast: there definitely was some kind of glitch in the 2nd part of the podcast and I had no time to detect it.  Lesson learned: it was a mistake to leave the post with questions open until Friday 18000 GMT and hope to get the podcast ready my Monday.  The next time around, I will leave three days to post questions (Monday-Wednesday and then I will use the remaining time (Wednesday-Sunday to prepare the podcast for release on Monday.  From now on and until the new blog is up, I will release on Soundcloud, Mediafire and Youtube.2 My "homophobic video": from a comment posted today I realized that some of you had not realized that the person sitting next to the cop is not a a woman at all but, to quote the official dogma, a person manifesting a "normal and natural variation in human sexuality and is not in and of itself a source of negative psychological effects".3 These past couple of weeks I have been bombarded with people accusing me of endorsing Å eÅ¡elj or of "discrediting" or even "abandoning" Strelkov.  What these critics apparently fail to understand is that I can discuss somebody's views or situation without necessarily endorsing or betraying that person.  As it happens, I have no personal opinion whatsoever about Å eÅ¡elj and I have the utmost respect for Strelkov.  My view of the world and of people is not binary, black or white, and I like to freely analyze and discuss ideas, situations and personalities.  If you are too stupid to cope with that kind of diversity of approaches, then I suggest you avoid my blog like the plague because I sure intend to continue to do that.4 The "Putin is weak and beaten" chorus is not letting up.  I personally explain that by too much exposure to the corporate media which is constantly presenting Putin as beat, isolated, humiliated and otherwise broken.  Since these comments never come with fact based and logically presented arguments, I don't see the point if trying to refute them.5 Novorussia: today Foreign Minister Lavrov spoke during a Q&A at the Duma and he also mentioned the possibility that the economic blockade of Novorussia by the Nazi regime in Kiev (which basically stole the money of the people of Novorussia could be a prelude to a Ukrainian attack.  I am personally convinced that the recent statements of Putin and Lavrov about this possibility are designed to prepare the public opinion of Russia and, to some degree, the EU to situation in which Russia might have to intervene to stop such an attack.  The situation right now is extremely dangerous, but not hopeless as I am sure that there is a lot of pressure put upon the junta and its US bosses by Russia and other countries not to attack.6 US elections: I am not a US citizen, so I don't get to vote anyway.  If I did, I still would not vote.  The choice of a lesser evil is still a choice for evil.  It is also a de-facto endorsement of the legitimacy of the system.  Can I recommend to those interested in this issue to read an old post of mine entitled "USSR 1974 - USA 2007: back to the future"?  Okay, that's it for today.  I am off to my beloved wilderness with wifey.  See you all in a couple of days!The Saker

Russian commander warns US could control whole Gulf of Mexico

How is that for a ridiculous headline?  You like it?Well, it is just a little variation of a BBC headline today:Nato commander warns Russia could control whole Black SeaHere is an except from this article:Russia's top military commander, Gen Valerii Gerasimov, has warned that US "militarisation" of the annexed Florida Peninsula could be used to exert control over the whole Gulf of Mexico.Well, the real excerpt was just slightly different:Nato's top military commander, Gen Philip Breedlove, has warned that Russian "militarisation" of the annexed Crimea Peninsula could be used to exert control over the whole Black Sea. So is there a difference? Of course not. Except one: American exceptionalism, of course.  Come to think of it, there is another difference: the US and NATO just tried to take control of Crimea via the Maidan color revolution whereas Russia did not try to take control of Florida.  That, of course, also begs the following question: if the US and NATO suspect that Russia might use the Crimea Peninsula to control the whole of the Black Sea, then would it be most unreasonable to ask what exactly the US and NATO were hoping to achieve had they succeeded in taking over Crimea?This is, of course, absolutely ridiculous and yet another example of the mind-blowing hypocrisy western corporate media.  It goes like this: US in Gulf of Mexico - good.  US in Black Sea - also good.  Russia in Black Sea - bad.  Russia in Gulf of Mexico - unthinkable.And the worst here is not the imperial hubris and arrogance of the USA, it is the willing subservience of the Europeans to Uncle Sam.  They all know it, but they pretend not to notice.Still, does Gen Breedlove have a point?  Oh yes, he sure does.  Crimea will, indeed, give Russia total control of the Black Sea and even beyond.  Russia will station at the very least one missile cruiser, several ultra-modern diesel attack submarines (ideal for brown and green water operations), supersonic medium range bombers armed with cruise missiles, coastal artillery and cruise missile batteries, fast attack craft, anti-submarine rotary and fixed-wing aircraft, etc.  You can think of Crimea as a unsinkable mega-carrier.  Kind of like Florida.The Saker

Russia speaks the truth: US imperialism brings neither peace nor democracy

https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=http://www.sott.net/article/289573-Russia-speaks-the-truth-US-imperialism-brings-neither-peace-nor-democracy&ct=ga&cd=CAIyGmU1ZDIwM2MzMGYyZDVlOGM6Y29tOmVuOlVT&usg=AFQjCNHcyQ8PACXzyOGXlVUpD2i8Zds1gQ

Pegasus Targets Freeh â€" On Orders From The President

  I have received a number of requests to verify the article below.As a former member of Pegasus, I do have contact with at least 3 active members. I also am well aware of Mr. Freeh and his previous activities in the DOJ. I have placed my remarks at the bottom of the article.  A […]

Speech by Putin to Russian Lawmakers about Crimean Referendum

Historical speech by President Putin to Russian lawmakers March 18 2014 about the referendum in Crimea and the acceptance of Crimea into the Russian Federation. I remember being in Moscow listening to the direct transmission of this historical speech by president Putin. Even if I am not Russian, I couldn’t help to feel how this […]

The Englishman who took a bullet for Russia

I have been aware of the numerous reports by Graham Phillips from Novorussia and I knew that he had been kidnapped by Ukrainian goons not once, but twice.  What always touched me in his reports was the visible fondness of the Novorussians for Graham, and in this video below you will see them calling him "Gremchik".Not even Graham (terrible!) British accent could be an obstacle for the respect and affection the Novorussians showed him (and in this video, they are clearly upset and distressed at the fact that he got hurt).  I know that Graham did not truly "take a bullet for Russia", but that he probably took it for the cause of honest journalism and I would say for the Truth.  But I am also quite sure that for the Novorussians it was "our Gremchik" who took a bullet for "us".In my opinion President Putin should bestow the medal "for bravery" to Graham just as he did to that other fantastic reporter, Anastasia Popopva, for her truly heroic reporting from Syria.Check out the video of how Phillips was wounded below.He took a shrapnel wound to his lower back and his life is not in danger.I wish him a prompt recovery and I hope that his work will finally get the recognition it deserves.  And even if his courage and integrity are never recognized in the West, his example proves one more time that there is this "other West" which is not hostile to Russia at all and which is principled and honorable.The Saker

Illusory Ceasefire in Ukraine

Conflict continues. Peace is a convenient illusion. Fascists don't wage wars to quit. Washington manipulates events destructively. It uses its installed stooge government to solidify unchallenged control over Ukraine. Get more info this from VT author Steve Lendman

Today meatspace won. See you tomorrow

Dear friends, Today has been a really bad day in meatspace for me.I need to bounce back and a night of sleep.I will get back to you all tomorrow.I have authorized all comments today (as I don't feel like reading them), including even one from a Ukie propagandist who wrote them with the hated CAPS on, but whatever - who cares?I will try to get things rolling tomorrow.Sorry about that,  The Saker

Egypt: Police Kill 3 Protesters, Injure Dozens

At least three Egyptian protesters have been killed and scores of others injured after security forces clashed with anti-government demonstrators in the capital city of Cairo. Thousands of protesters took to the streets of Cairo on Friday calling for ouster…

President Putin’s Address to Russian Diplomats (in English)

President Putin is a man of his words. He writes his own speeches and their content tells you what he thinks about Russia and its relationship to other nations. That’s why it is well worth to pay attention to his words in this speech … Download (PDF, 197KB)

Russia protests over anti

By Petar Komnenic PODGORICA (Reuters) - Russia has protested to Montenegro over anti-Russian billboards that popped up this month in the small Adriatic republic bearing the NATO logo and rejecting the "Russian boot". The billboards, signed "Montenegrin Patriots", appear to allude to tensions between an influx of Russian money into the former Yugoslav republic and its hopes of joining the ...

Україна

First Maidan anniversary (the Ukraine is Europe indeed)

Russia slams Kiev over Odessa deaths

- Russia has censured pro-Western authorities in Kiev as ‘criminally irresponsible’ following a deadly fire in the trade union building in Ukraine’s Odessa.

Boston Bombing Prosecutor: Witnesses ‘Afraid’ to Testify

originally published by WhoWhatWhy by Joseph L. Flatley The Boston Marathon bombing is much more important than has been acknowledged, principally because it is the defining domestic national security event since 9/11â€"and has played a major role in expanding the…

Russia speaks the truth: US imperialism brings neither peace nor democracy

https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=http://www.sott.net/article/289573-Russia-speaks-the-truth-US-imperialism-brings-neither-peace-nor-democracy&ct=ga&cd=CAIyGmU1ZDIwM2MzMGYyZDVlOGM6Y29tOmVuOlVT&usg=AFQjCNHcyQ8PACXzyOGXlVUpD2i8Zds1gQ

The US, Canada and the Ukraine refuse to condemn the heroization of Nazism

Sputnik About Carl Bildt’s “Handlers” â€Â" The Brzezinski Family The recently launched Russian news provider, Sputnik, gives, in the article by Daniel Zubov cited below, an interesting review of the Brzezinski Family and their influence on Americas foreign policy. The connection to Sweden through the American Ambassador there, Mark Brzezinski, helps to explain the special role Carl...

One Year Since the Beginning of the Crisis in Ukraine

Tomorrow, Saturday, marks the first anniversary of the Eastern Partnership Summit in Vilnius, where then Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych refused to sign an Association Agreement with the European Union. One year later Ukraine is embroiled in a civil war that…

On conspiracy theories and credibility

Dear friends,I am noticing with some dismay that some (many?) of you are still firmly the mental clutches of the "conspiracy theories" logical fallacy.  The reactions to Koenig's articles about Ebola and HIV are typical of that kind of logical derailment.  So it is hight time that I state a few basic assumptions of this blog.1) A "conspiracy theory" is, a priori, a good thing.  Why?  Because the world is chock full of conspiracies.  What is a conspiracy? It is a secret plan of a group of people.  Does any of you really believe that with 16+ "intelligence" agencies in the USA there are not thousands of conspiracies hatched every day by tens of thousand of professional people just here, in the USA?  Don't you know that corporations conspire too?  What do you think antitrust laws are all about?  Do you know that the criminal code is also full of conspiracy crimes?  So here is the deal: if you want to understand what happens behind the smokescreen thrown before you by the corporate media and government official you HAVE TO spend most of your time looking into conspiracy theories.  Put simply - if you reject conspiracy theories you are blind.  Period.2) I don't give a damn about my "credibility" or the "credibility" of my blog.  I don't deal in "credibility".  "Credibility" is an "argument of authority" which assumes that something coming from "A" is credible because it comes from "A".  This is not what I want for this blog.  In the Saker community I want everybody to be critical of everybody and everything and to only judge an arguments in its own merits (or lack thereof).  If tomorrow Poroshenko or Joe Biden write a good piece I would not hesitate to publish it.  Not because I endorse it (I only endorse what I write!), but to foster an intelligent discussion.  In other words, "credibility" is something attached to an argument, not a person.3) In order to reject a hypothesis we have to first look into it.  Unless we develop an 1984-like automatic rejection without analysis capability, there is no way for your to evaluate a thesis without being exposed to it.  A hypothesis is just that - a "maybe" or "what if".  If it passes a preliminary stage of acceptance, and if it becomes formalized, it becomes a theory.  Then, that theory can be tested, in particular in its ability to predict.  Only then can it be proven false.  In the case of Ebola and HIV all I hear is side "A" claiming that it was created by the US government while side "B" says that this is not so.  In the meantime, NOBODY is offering any kind of halfway intelligent discussion of the hypothesis.  Instead the hypothesis is dismissed prima facie as a "conspiracy theory".  Those who do that apparently fail to realize that if, as this hypothesis states, the US government had something to do with the creation of HIV or Ebola then by definition this was a conspiracy and, again, by definition only a conspiracy theory could help prove that.What is wrong with you guys?!  Has basic logic just become extinct?!4) Last but not least - this blog is about *freedom of thought*, something sorely needed in our single-thought and completely monolithic society.  I feel that freedom implies the freedom to make up you own mind and therefore to be exposed to something which is wrong or untrue.  All of the media and 95% of the blogosphere is busy trying to establish "credibility" like a dog peeing in the four corners of a room to establish its territory.  I say let them aspire to "credibility" if they so chose - I aspire for *freedom*.  I want this blog to be a place where people can present odd, "heretical", rejected, crimethink and otherwise persecuted ideas.  Let them come here, present them, and if you disagree with them - tear them apart with facts and logic, be ruthless, don't leave them a place to hide from your merciless analysis.  But don't rejected them without that, without this "trial by comments" in which all of us are jurors.It just so happens that I remember some very well informed people telling me in the late 1980s early 1990s that HIV had all the signs of having been engineered.  Is there a reason to reject such a hypothesis prima facie?  Not if you know anything about the history of biowarfare research, especially by the US government.  That I know for sure. But I personally have no opinion about HIV and no opinion about Ebola.  Frankly, I don't have the time to form an opinion about them (oh yes, I don't consider having an opinion a "right" of some kind.  Having an opinion is the result of a painstaking and long process of analysis at the end of which you sometimes, not always, end up with an opinion).  To be very honest, I don't particularly care.  But I care that others care and that is why, I posted these articles by Koenig because I know for a fact that others (which shall remained unnamed) have chickened out from posting them, probably for reasons of "credibility".I don't care much about this specific topic, but I do care, immensely, about the intellectual freedom of this blog.  And I will never, ever, let considerations of "credibility" stand in the way of this blog's intellectual freedom.  There are plenty of really, truly, totally "credible" and "respectable" blogs out there.  Somebody got to be free and non-respectable and I very deliberately chose to be part of that "fringe lunatic conspiracy theorist" with "zero credibility" which does not let the society's doxa tell me what I should, or should not, post.:-PThe Saker

Malaysia excluded from MH17 probe â€" for ‘not pointing fingers at Russia’?

http://rt.com/news/209759-mh17-investigation-malaysia-excluded/

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[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oaC9UJm9NYc?rel=0]

The global investment impact of ongoing Russia

At Market Realist, we've been following the Russia- closely and analyzing their impact on your investments in exchange-traded funds.

Russia’s Oil Giant Battles Debt After $55 Billion Deal

Igor Sechin spent $55 billion in 2013 to buy competitor TNK-BP and create a Russian oil colossus, pumping about 5 percent of the world's crude. Almost two years later and investors have written off the ...

Assessing the future of the Russia

Energy os the strongest yet most delicate Russia-Ukraine trade link. Ukraine imports nearly 50% of its gas from Russia.

Sputnik About Carl Bildt’s “Handlers” â€" The Brzezinski Family

The recently launched Russian news provider, Sputnik, gives, in the article by Daniel Zubov cited below, an interesting review of the Brzezinski Family and their influence on Americas foreign policy. The connection to Sweden through the American Ambassador there, Mark Brzezinski, helps to explain the special role Carl Bildt and the Swedish Foreign Ministry played in the […]

Is the Ebola Outbreak in West Africa a Biological Proxy War?

Russia announced that they have a vaccine effective against Ebola. From another report in Moscow Times it seems more like they have an effective drug to treat Ebola and not a really a vaccine. The investigative reporter Jon Rappoport (nomorefakenews.com), who have disclosed the fraud behind the HIV-virus and other frauds committed by the BIG PHARMA […]

War on the Down

It should come as no surprise that President Obama has secretly extended the U.S. combat mission in Afghanistan. Empires do not retreat unless they are defeated. This is especially true of U.S. imperialism, which, like no other empire in history,…

NEO â€" EU Declares War on Russia and Europe

- Is the EU going to force Putin to launch the counter-sanctions on all EU car, truck and bus imports by launching its latest sanctions against Russia?

SitRep Transcarpathia, Transnistria and Gagauzia 17 Nov

- 23 Nov A perambulation around the periphery of Ukraine, looking at local and regional viewpoints. The media coverage varies from relatively neutral to rabidly nationalist. Note: some urls in the links are prefixed with 'z5h64q92x9.net/tr-url/ru-en.en/' . This form provides the reader with a Yandex translated version of the source. The original article can be reached by removing this prefix. Kharkov has experienced numerous unexplained explosions may reflect actions by partisans. A recent status map shows the extent of purported partisan activity throughout Donbass. The connection from Kharkov to the border is interesting. Is there another voentorg in action? Estonia - the national airline has lost 6.4 million euro as a result of the Ukraine crisis. The route Tallinin - Kiev has been severely disrupted. Latvia seems to be feeling left out. It has claimed a Russian submarine passed about 27 miles from its territorial waters. This is seriously pathetic. Galicia - low level discontent was exhibited at a recent football match. One of the teams, Shakhtar Donetsk, refused to wear T-shirts commemorating ATO forces. Poland reportedly buying 40 AGM-158B JASSM cruise missiles from the US for around $250 million, with 50 % discount. These missiles have a range of 960 km, and an accuracy of around three meters. Even if you buy into the Polish missile defence is aimed at Iran and North Korea scam, these missiles certainly are not defensive and could reach Moscow. Slovakia will continue to supply Ukraine with gas via reverse flow through the Vojny-Uzhgorod pipeline. This pipeline can supply about 30 million cubic metres gas per day from the Slovakian energy company Eustream. Slovakia claims to be able to maintain this despite a 50% decline in gas supplied to Slovakia from Russia. The head of the Ukraine gas company NaftoGaz claims this way Ukraine can completely avoid Russia as a gas supplier. He seems to be relying on ignorance of readers as to where Slovakia obtains its gas. The Ukraine gas company will defer any decision to buy further gas from Russia until 1 December Czech Republic - Milos Zeman, the Head of State has stated that it is pointless to support Ukraine in the midst of a civil war. He also is a critic of EU sanctions against Russia, stating that he is not the only one leader with concerns. The leaders of Slovakia, Hungary, and Austria hold similar views. Sanctions are a loss-loss policy. He has invited the leaders of the four major WWII western powers to a ceremony commemorating the liberation of AUschwitz. Predictably some poodles have whined at the mention of Putin, but Zeman points out the camp was liberated by the Red Army. Equally predictably, there have been sign of a colour-coordinated response suggesting the US are hinting at regime change. Look out for red cards in the Czech Republic. Transcarpathian military forces continue the dance of shuttling to and from the front in the east. In the last week, 27 volunteers have returned, with permission from Kiev, for two weeks leave. A further 36 officers from the Uzhgorod battalion of the National Guard have returned from two months duty at block posts in the Debaltsevo area. Small numbers of casualties are reported. Three were reported killed and two severely wounded in action around Debaltsevo. Initially these were described as members of the local 128th Mountain Infantry Brigade, but the identification was corrected to the 79th Brigade. A few days later, two troops from the 128th were reported killed after serving four months duty near Debaltsevo. One ATO soldier and nine were wounded in action at Donetsk airport. The Transcarpathian press recently included a very surprising item - an interview with a man from the Lugansk region who had moved west with his family. The surprising thing was the fairly accurate representation of the situation, not jingoistic like all previous interviews with refugees. He notes that locals shun him when he mentions where he is from and asks why are Ukrainians killing Ukrainians. This was counteracted to some extent by the appearance of an odious piece of propaganda. A Canadian outfit, Nordic Filmworks, has produced a slick propaganda piece linked to a StandWithUkr hash-tag. This seems to reflect an Israeli hasbara theme StandWithUs. Prisoner exchanges recently resulted in the release of 17 Ukrainian prisoners of war. Transcarpathian police officers returned from the front claim to have arrested 100 separatists, 50 of whom were exchanged for prisoners. The charges justifying arrest are not specified, so maybe it was a quota in order to have someone to exchange. Biden The US Vice President made a visit to Ukraine this week. Little was reported about the subject matter, The two key questions covered in the meeting were energy (Biden's son has a financial interest in shale oil/gas resources in the Donbass) and security. One report claims "the United States promised assistance in all areas" and "there are a lot of arrangements, which should not be mentioned at a press conference". Does this refer to the supply of weapons to the Ukraine forces? We will not see. Given the Novorossian forces ability in depriving Ukrainians of their weapon systems, maybe shiny new US equipment will show up on their side. The Transcarpathia economy fares slightly better than the overall Ukraine position, but it is dire. Inflation is running at 19% for the year to date and is predicted to reach 25% by the end of the year. Salaries have risen by about 5.8%, to an average of 2660 UAH (~$178) per month. Wage arrears have reduced b 4.5 million UAH to 3.9 million UAH, one of the lowest rates in the country.Kiev, perhaps the wealthiest part of the country, has a budget deficit of 2 billion UAH, with only 25 million UAH on hand as a result of a government strategy to keep Kiev 'on short rations'. The exchange rate position is worsening. There is evidence of manipulation of the exchange rate during the run up to the election election. Shortly after the coup, suspicious activity involving armed masked men, unmarked vehicles, forty large crates and an unmarked aircraft led to speculation that Ukraine's gold, or at least a significant part of it, had been secreted out of the country. One possibility is that the residual gold was sold to stabilise the rate of the Hryvnia in order to give an appearance of stability. The NBU however, claims the gold was sold to optimise the structure of international reserves. The exchange rate control was removed after the election and the rate increased dramatically from the nominal 13 UAH / USD to nearly 16 UAH / USD. The head of the Ukraine National Bank (NBU) notes that the UAH has devalued by ~100% since the beginning of the year and by ~50% since July. The NBU now claims to be operating a floating exchange rate. One other possibility for the manipulation is the influence of George Soros. The head of the NBU has admitted that Soros visited Ukraine two weeks ago and that Ukraine relies on financial support from him. There is also evidence of US financial support via the CIA front USAID. The banking sector is in a very poor state in spite of this support. The overall banking system of Ukraine made a loss of 13.5 billion UAH for the period January to October 2014, compared to a $2.1 billion UAH profit in the same period the previous year. About one third of bank loans are 'non performing' i.e. they borrower is not making payments. The weak currency also makes it very difficult to pay debt owed in foreign currency. Initially the NBU said it was not going to close banks in spite of speculation in Transcarpathian media. A few days later, it refinanced the state-owned Oschadbank with 11 billion UAH and towards the end of the week, it declared that two public joint stock companies, 'VAB Bank' and 'CityCommerce Bank' were insolvent after shareholders failed to recapitalise the bank to new capital levels imposed to comply with IMF requirements. Zakarpatgas, the local Transcarpathian gas supply company, is planning to spend 10.8 million UAH on infrastructure renovation, aimed at reducing gas losses in the distribution system and more accurate metering of gas used by customers. The Ukraine nuclear power industry depends on Russia for its supply of nuclear fuel for its operational reactors. The contract runs until the end of 2015. Hungary is under increasing pressure from the US regarding its perceived pro-Russian stance. Orban claims that the government is not pro-Russian, rather it is concerned about the protection of the interests and sovereignty of Hungary, including the Hungarian diaspora in neighbouring countries. In this light, Hungary still supports South Stream as a means of bypassing problems associated with Ukraine and gas supplies through it. It looks like the US is exploiting diverse internal sources of discontent to cover a standard colour-coordinated regime change warm-up. I guess the US hopes the mere threat would be sufficient to make the Hungarians see the error of their ways and put US interests first. Serbia is not et a member of the EU, but it has been told to impose EU sanctions against Russia by the European Commissioner Johannes Hahn. This is effectively an ultimatum - obey or you do not join. Given the relatively close trading ties and historical association with Russia, the Serbian goverment has stated it will not impose such sanctions. It rightly fears the adverse effects of reverse sanctions. It also has an interest in the success of South Stream and funding for the reconstruction of Serbian railways. It seems likely that Serbia may also face the usual colour-coordinated threat of regime change if it choses to put its own interests before those of the US and EU. Colour-coordinated regime change - so we have Russia as the big target, then China, but first the Czech Republic, Hungary and Serbia are in the sights of the US. If the German business people have their way, Merkel would change course so Germany would also join the list. I wonder how many simultaneous regime change actions the US can run. Will the totally manipulated US / global USD-backed financial system collapse first as a result of massive internal inconsistencies? Romania has a new President Klaus Johannis who won a narrow victory over his rival the current Prime Minister Victor Ponta. Johannis is the mayor of Sibiu and the leader of the right wing Christian Liberal Alliance. He seems to have won by default in a protest vote against "wickedness, corruption, betrayal, lies, arrogance" of the system. The US State representative stated that "democracy is alive and well" in Romania and they are prepared to work with Johannes. Moldova faces an election on 30 November. The results of a poll released on 18 November indicate PCRM (Communist) would get 19.4%, PLDM (Liberal Democrat) 15.1%, PDM (Democratic) 12.4%, PSRM (Socialist) 11.6%, Patria 8.1% and PL (Liberal) 7.1%. The Popular Movement Antimafia would gain 2.5% and the Peoples Party 2.1%. The pollsters surveyed 1591 people aged 18-72 from all localities except Transnistria in the period 1 - 10 November. The accuracy of the result is claimed to be within 2.6%. Other surveys indicate closure of the gap between PCRM and PLDM. Given the PLDM is more pro-EU/pro-US than the PCRM, it seems likely that the result will favour them, and consequent alignment of Moldova with the EU over the RF. Another youth group, the Alliance of Students, has stated it will stage protests if the PCRM win or are included in any governmental alliance. This is a clear indication that some democratic outcomes are not allowed and marks out their role as an EU/US tool. The Moldovan economy continues to face problems. It's external debt has increased by $11.1 million to $1.3 billion over the course of 2014. Part of this increase arises from the attempt of the Moldovan national bank to stabilise the exchange rate of the national currency (the lei). The exchange rate has increased from 13 lei to the dollar at the start of the year to about 15 lei now. Moldova faces similar problems to Ukraine, facing increasing debt in foreign currency and a weakening exchange rate. Russian sanctions are also important, and the consequent reduced trade with Russia has had the effect of making Romania the dominant trading partner of Moldova. It claims it intends to repay part of the outstanding debt to Gazprom in the near future. It is also considering alternative sources of gas, Romania or Austria via reverse flow. The Democrat Party has come out in favour of the sale of agricultural land to foreigners, an essential part of the EU project. This will allow foreign companies to acquire land cheaply and introduce industrial agriculture, with profit exiting Moldova. This will greatly disadvantage any local farming units. Gagauzia faces more problems should the PLDM win the election. A representative of the party has publicly stated that the PLDM will not recognise the autonomy of Gagauzia and may be preparing to remove the special status enshrined in law. Transnistria also faces potential problems after the Moldovan elections. The PMR representative on the jCC 5+2 status negotiations team has expressed the view that Moldovan combatants may storm Transnistria, given the recent provocations against the PMR leader at Chisinau airport and the group of Moldovan soldiers travelling in plain clothes in PMR. Moldova continues to block progress at the JCC meetings originally intended to deliver a peaceful solution to the status of Transnistria. Moldova appears to have a position of no compromise which is consistent with US/EU support. Ukraine is continuing with the construction of a ditch along the border with Transnistria. Reunification of Moldova and Romania would present further problems for Transnistria and more so, Gagauzia. The original impetus for autonomy or separation was the possibility of reunification of what became Moldova with Romania. Crimea has a higher profile in the news following the election. As part of his electioneering, Dmitry Yarosh stated that Crimean Tatars would start to cause trouble. This has manifested in frequent appearances of Mustafa Dzhemilev, a Ukrainian representative of, and advisor to Poroshenko on, the Tatar people in the press. He makes unsupported claims that Crimean Tatars are living in a climate of fear. Human Rights Watch have produced a report about these allegations, but their position is compromised having used an image of a women crying in the presence of militia after the Odessa mas murder event claiming the women was being threatened by Russian police. They silently withdrew the petition once their misrepresentation was made public. Interestingly, Soros mentioned earlier also has his finger in the pie in Crimea. He seems to support or influence a Tatar NGO amongst others. This concludes this short tour. I think it clearly indicates the degree of interaction and the expanding scale of problems enhanced by the coup in Ukraine. There is clear potential for further destabilisation of recalcitrant (in US eyes) countries further to the west with the consequent fallout. The EU politicians have done themselves proud in their obeisance to the Anglo-Zionist project. The remarkably diplomatic Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov has stated the Russia will not shoot itself in the foot by ceasing to trade with Europe, but the former relationship is finished and "business as usual" is no longer possible.

Saker Podcast #2 on YouTube

Dear friends,Since some of you have requested it, here is the YouTube upload of the 2nd Saker Podcast.  By the way, there are a couple of instances (4 I think?) of a kind of echo in the latter part of the podcast.  This is already the case in the original audio track and I am not sure whether my microphone (Zoom H2n) or my software (Audacity) is to blame.  Sorry about that and I will try to fix this problem before the next podcast.Kind regards,The Saker[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LJLSGL5BaFs?rel=0]

On Black Friday, Americans Confront the Walmart 1%: Pay Employees a Living Wage

Pickets, strikes, and protests are slated to sweep across the United States on Black Friday. (Photo: TwitPic/@WorkingAmerica) “Last year Walmart made $16 billion in profits. The company’s controlling family, the Waltons, is the richest family in America with nearly $150…

Russia vows support for Syria's Assad to combat 'terrorism'

By Denis Dyomkin and Gabriela Baczynska SOCHI, Russia/MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia said on Wednesday it would support President Bashar al-Assad to combat "terrorism" in the Middle East, indicating there was no new room for compromise on one of the key contentious issues in the Syrian conflict. Russian President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov held talks with Assad's foreign ...

Russia

NEO â€" Paradoxes of Georgian â€" Abkhazian Relations

- Seth Ferris..."Crimea is the flavor of the month in Western discourse as it has become a part of the Russian Federation following its recent referendum."

President Putin’s Address to Russian Diplomats (in English)

President Putin is a man of his words. He writes his own speeches and their content tells you what he thinks about Russia and its relationship to other nations. That’s why it is well worth to pay attention to his words in this speech … Download (PDF, 197KB)

Canada: Ottawa Shooting â€" Is One Muslim Man’s Drug

Ottawa lockdown after Parliament shooting on Oct. 22. Courtesy The Independent Originally published by WhoWhatWhy In a bygone, saner era, Michael Zehaf-Bibeau’s murder of Canadian soldier Nathan Cirillo and subsequent shooting rampage inside the Parliament would have been treated as…

NEO â€" True Heroes Behind the Kiev Ceasefire

- Jim W. Dean..."We need to make America's state sponsored terrorism a fall campaign issue on the Dems and Repubs doing the AIPAC Zombie walk on Ukraine."

The Free Trade Agreements: The Asia

http://www.globalresearch.ca/?p=5416888

A Very Complete Analysis by the Saker of the Crisis in Ukraine

This is the most complete and, in my opinion, also a very correct analysis of the crisis in Ukraine initiated by the Neocons in the US. I don’t know who this “Saker” really is. But I do know that he knows a lot about Russia, USA and the New World Order. Having followed the Saker’s […]

NEO â€" Putin…Face of the Global Resistance Movement

- 'One of our first hurdles is to get people to understand that most of us live in "occupied countries", but not the traditional sense.'

Putin’s Choices in Ukraine

Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. That is the situation for Putin with regards to the crisis in Ukraine right now. As before, the blogger called “the Saker” describes Russia’s choices in an excellent way. What is going on is unbelievable. It is incomprehensible that the individual countries in Europe can support the […]

The Free Trade Agreements: The Asia

Editor’s Note We bring to the attention of our readers this important text drafted by the Asia Europe People’s Forum. While we endorse the main thrust of  this Call to Action, we are nonetheless concerned that the AEPF initiative is…

The future of the Nazi Ukraine in 90 seconds

Check the sad and, frankly, pathetic footage recently taken at the Ukrainain-Polish border: these poor people are trying to storm the Polish checkpoint every day to try to sell or barter something, or to find a job.  This has been happening every day.  The saddest thing about that is that this is only a timid beginning for a phenomenon which will inexorably grow.  The poor Ukies can sing "Ще не вмерла України" ("The Ukraine has not died yet", the Ukrainian national anthem, itself a bad copy of the Polish one) but it sure looks to me like the Ukraine is dying.The Saker[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UioLutg57gE?rel=0]

Save the Children Trying to “Contain” Damage from Tony Blair Award: Leaked Email

Tony Blair with Abdulfattah al-Sisi, the leader of the July 2013 military coup that toppled Egypt’s first democratically elected president. (APA images) Save the Children is trying to tamp down coverage and “contain” the damage from the award given to…

Police Violence: Can Surveillance Cameras Help Free Us?

Do the cameras that now surround us, helping governments keep continual track of our lives, also offer a benefit? Can they help educate us, show us a reality obscured too long by fears created for us by the elites and…

Hi

Electronic equipment, including hard drives and a device operating the helicopter carrier’s communications system, has been stolen off the Mistral sp built for Russia in the French port of Saint-Nazaire. Via:: -tech gear stolen from Russia’s Mistral warsp in France

As Whitewash of Police Murder in Ferguson Continues, Video Shows Cleveland Cop Killed 12

Cleveland police released a video Wednesday of the shooting of Tamir Rice, a 12--old boy killed by a police officer this past weekend. The video clearly shows that a police officer shot Rice within two seconds of pulling up to…

NEO â€" Does the CIA plan a Syrian style terror war in Ukraine?

- Someone decided to pull the plug on the four-way Ukraine talks on planned for this week. Kiev decided to invade its own country.

NEO â€" Are the Ukraine talks a NATO ploy?

- "Censored from Western media is the fact that the 'special status' for the New Republics recently passed by Kiev has a six month expiration date "

Poland rejects visa applications by Ukrainians, saying it has to comply with EU law

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=de2_1417206237

Absolutely crucial statement by Foreign Minister Lavrov (*MUST READ*!)

Note: Finally the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs found the time, energy and personnel to translate this most important statement. They even posted it (thanks to Jonathan Jarvis for the pointer!). And if you detect irritation on my part you are correct - I am frustrated with how incompetent Russians are in anything relating to public information. Anyway,I have bolded out what I consider to be the most important statements made by Lavrov that day.  I would just like to add the following:1)  Lavrov is considered very much a "moderate" and his language has always been strictly diplomatic.  So when you read Lavrov, just imagine what folks in other Russian ministries are thinking.2) Lavrov makes no secret of his view of the USA and of his plans for the future of our planet.  When you read his words, try to imagine what a US Neocon feels and thinks and you will immediately see why the US elites both hate and fear Russia.3) Finally, Lavrov openly admits that Russia and China have forged an long-term strategic alliance (proving all the nay-sayers who predicted that China would backtstab Russian wrong).  This is, I would argue, the single most important strategic development in the past decade.4)  Finally, notice the clear contempt which Lavrov has for a pseudo-Christian "West" which dares not speak in defense of persecuted Christians, denies its own roots, and does not even respect its own traditions.Friends, what we are witnessing before our eyes is not some petty statement about the Ukraine or sanctions, it is the admission by Lavrov of a fundamental "clash of civilizations", but not between some wholly imaginary "Christian West" and Islam, but between Christian Russia and the post-Christian West.Russia did not want this conflict.  Russia did everything in her power to prevent it.  But the West left Russia no choice and Russia now openly declares her willingness to fight and prevail.The Saker-------Remarks by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov at the XXII Assembly of the Council on Foreign and Defence Policy, Moscow, 22 November 2014 I’m happy to be at this annual Assembly of the Council on Foreign and Defence Policy (Russian abbreviation SVOP). It is always a great pleasure for me to meet people and feel the intellectual potential, which enables the Council, its leaders and representatives to respond to global developments and analyse them. Their analysis is always free from any hysteria, and its members offer well-grounded and solid arguments, taking a step back, since those caught in the midst of events can hardly adopt an unbiased perspective. We are inevitably influenced by the developments, which makes your observations, analysis, discourse and suggestions even more valuable to us. As far as I know, this year’s Assembly will focus on prospects for accelerating domestic growth in Russia. There is no doubt that concerted efforts by our society as a whole to bring about comprehensive economic, social and spiritual development are a prerequisite for making Russia’s future sustainable. That said, by virtue of my professional duties, I have to focus on foreign policy issues, which are still relevant for the Assembly’s agenda, since in this interconnected, globalised world, isolating internal development from the outside world is impossible. Russia’s President Vladimir Putin provided a detailed analysis of the international developments at the Valdai Club meeting in Sochi, as well as in his interviews during his trip to Asia. For this reason, I won’t offer any conceptual observations, as everything has already been said. Nevertheless, I would like to share with you some considerations based on our day-to-day foreign policy efforts. It is not my intention to deliver a comprehensive or clear outlook, since at this stage all forecasts are provisional, no matter who makes them. Moreover, diplomats seek to influence developments as they unfold, not contemplate them. Naturally, I will start with Ukraine. Long before the country was plunged into the crisis, there was a feeling in the air that Russia’s relations with the EU and with the West were about to reach their moment of truth. It was clear that we could no longer continue to put issues in our relations on the back burner and that a choice had to be made between a genuine partnership or, as the saying goes, “breaking pots.” It goes without saying that Russia opted for the former alternative, while unfortunately our Western partners settled for the latter, whether consciously or not. In fact, they went all out in Ukraine and supported extremists, thereby giving up their own principles of democratic regime change. What came out of it was an attempt to play chicken with Russia, to see who blinks first. As bullies say, they wanted to Russia to “chicken out” (I can’t find a better word for it), to force us to swallow the humiliation of Russians and native speakers of Russian in Ukraine. Honourable Leslie Gelb, whom you know all too well, wrote that Ukraine’s Association Agreement with the EU had nothing to do with inviting Ukraine to join the EU and was aimed in the short term at preventing it from joining the Customs Union. This is what an impartial and unbiased person said. When they deliberately decided to go down the path of escalation in Ukraine, they forgot many things, and had a clear understanding of how such moves would be viewed in Russia. They forgot the advice of, say, Otto von Bismarck, who had said that disparaging the millions-strong great Russian people would be the biggest political mistake. President Vladimir Putin said the other day that no one in history has yet managed to subjugate Russia to its influence. This is not an assessment, but a statement of fact. Yet such an attempt has been made to quench the thirst for expanding the geopolitical space under Western control, out of a mercantile fear to lose the spoils of what they across the Atlantic had persuaded themselves was the victory in the Cold War. The plus of today’s situation is that everything has clicked into its place and the calculus behind the West’s actions has been revealed despite its professed readiness to build a security community, a common European home. To quote (singer/song-writer) Bulat Okudzhava, “The past is getting clearer and clearer.” The clarity is becoming more tangible. Today our task is not only to sort out the past (although that must be done), but most importantly, to think about the future. Talks about Russia’s isolation do not merit serious discussion. I need hardly dwell on this before this audience. Of course, one can damage our economy, and damage is being done, but only by doing harm to those who are taking corresponding measures and, equally important, destroying the system of international economic relations, the principles on which it is based. Formerly, when sanctions were applied (I worked at the Russian mission to the UN at the time) our Western partners, when discussing the DPRK, Iran or other states, said that it was necessary to formulate the restrictions in such a way as to keep within humanitarian limits and not to cause damage to the social sphere and the economy, and to selectively target only the elite. Today everything is the other way around: Western leaders are publicly declaring that the sanctions should destroy the economy and trigger popular protests. So, as regards the conceptual approach to the use of coercive measures the West unequivocally demonstrates that it does not merely seek to change Russian policy (which in itself is illusory), but it seeks to change the regime and practically nobody denies this. President Vladimir Putin, speaking with journalists recently, said that today’s Western leaders have a limited planning horizon. Indeed, it is dangerous when decisions on key problems of the development of the world and humankind as a whole are taken on the basis of short electoral cycles: in the United States the cycle is two years and each time one has to think of or do something to win votes. This is the negative side of the democratic process, but we cannot afford to ignore it. We cannot accept the logic when we are told to resign, relax and take it as a given that everyone has to suffer because there are elections in the United States every two years. This is just not right. We will not resign ourselves to this because the stakes are too high in the fight against terror, the threats of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and many bloody conflicts whose negative impact goes far beyond the framework of the corresponding states and regions. The wish to do something to gain unilateral advantages or to endear oneself to the electorate ahead of another election leads to chaos and confusion in international relations. We hear the daily repeated mantra that Washington is aware of its own exclusiveness and its duty to bear this burden, to lead the rest of the world. Rudyard Kipling spoke about “the white man’s burden.” I hope that this is not what drives Americans. The world today is not white or black, but multi-coloured and heterogeneous. Leadership in this world can be assured not by persuading oneself of one’ exclusiveness and God-given duty to be responsible for everyone, but only by the ability and craft in forming a consensus. If the US partners committed their power to this goal, this would be priceless, and Russia would be actively helping them. However, so far, US administrative resources still work only in the NATO framework, and then with substantial reservations, and its writ does not reach beyond the North Atlantic Alliance. One proof of this is the results of US attempts to make the world community follow its line in connection with the anti-Russian sanctions and principles. I have spoken about it more than once and we have ample proof of the fact that American ambassadors and envoys across the world seek meetings at the highest level to argue that the corresponding countries are obliged to punish Russia together with them or else face the consequences. This is done with regard to all countries, including our closest allies (this speaks volumes about the kind of analysts Washington has). An overwhelming majority of the states with which we have a continuing dialogue without any restrictions and isolation, as you see, value Russia’s independent role in the international arena. Not because they like it when somebody challenges the Americans, but because they realise that the world order will not be stable if nobody is allowed to speak his mind (although privately the overwhelming majority do express their opinion, but they do not want to do so publicly for fear of Washington’s reprisals). Many reasonable analysts understand that there is a widening gap between the global ambitions of the US Administration and the country’s real potential. The world is changing and, as has always happened in history, at some point somebody’s influence and power reach their peak and then somebody begins to develop still faster and more effectively. One should study history and proceed from realities. The seven developing economies headed by BRICS already have a bigger GDP than the Western G7. One should proceed from the facts of life, and not from a misconceived sense of one’s own grandeur. It has become fashionable to argue that Russia is waging a kind of “hybrid war” in Crimea and in Ukraine. It is an interesting term, but I would apply it above all to the United States and its war strategy â€" it is truly a hybrid war aimed not so much at defeating the enemy militarily as at changing the regimes in the states that pursue a policy Washington does not like. It is using financial and economic pressure, information attacks, using others on the perimeter of a corresponding state as proxies and of course information and ideological pressure through externally financed non-governmental organisations. Is it not a hybrid process and not what we call war? It would be interesting to discuss the concept of the hybrid war to see who is waging it and is it only about “little green men.” Apparently the toolkit of our US partners, who have become adept at using it, is much larger. In attempting to establish their pre-eminence at a time when new economic, financial and political power centres are emerging, the Americans provoke counteraction in keeping with Newton’s third law and contribute to the emergence of structures, mechanisms, and movements that seek alternatives to the American recipes for solving the pressing problems. I am not referring to anti-Americanism, still less about forming coalitions spearheaded against the United States, but only about the natural wish of a growing number of countries to secure their vital interests and do it the way they think right, and not what they are told “from across the pond.” Nobody is going to play anti-US games just to spite the United States. We face attempts and facts of extra-territorial use of US legislation, the kidnapping of our citizens in spite of existing treaties with Washington whereby these issues are to be resolved through law enforcement and judicial bodies. According to its doctrine of national security, the United States has the right to use force anywhere, anytime without necessarily asking the UN Security Council for approval. A coalition against the Islamic State was formed unbeknownst to the Security Council. I asked Secretary of State John Kerry why have not they gone to the UN Security Council for this. He told me that if they did, they would have to somehow designate the status of Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad. Of course, they had to because Syria is a sovereign state and still a member of the UN (no one excluded it from UN membership). The secretary of state said it was wrong because the United States is combating terrorism and the al-Assad regime is the most important factor that galvanises terrorists from around the world and acts as a magnet attracting them to this region in an attempt to overthrow the Syrian regime. I believe this is perverse logic. If we are talking about precedents (the United States adheres to case law), it is worth remembering the chemical disarmament in Syria when the Assad regime was a completely legitimate partner of the United States, Russia, the OPCW and others. The Americans maintain talks with the Taliban as well. Whenever the United States has an opportunity to benefit from something, it acts quite pragmatically. I’m not sure why the ideologically-driven position took the upper hand this time and the United States chose to believe that Assad cannot be a partner. Perhaps, this is not so much an operation against the Islamic State as paving the way for toppling al-Assad under the guise of a counter-terrorist operation. Francis Fukuyama recently wrote the book, Political Order and Political Decay, in which he argues that the efficiency of public administration in the United States is declining and the traditions of democratic governance are gradually being replaced with feudal fiefdom ruling methods. This is part of the discussion about someone who lives in a glass house and throws stones. All of this is happening amid the mounting challenges and problems of the modern world. We are seeing a continued "tug of war" in Ukraine. Trouble is brewing on the south border of the EU. I don’t think the Middle Eastern and North African problems will go away all by themselves. The EU has formed a new commission. New foreign actors have emerged, who will face a serious fight for where to send their basic resources: either for the continuation of reckless schemes in Ukraine, Moldova, etc., within the Eastern Partnership (as advocated by an aggressive minority in the EU), or they will listen to the Southern European countries and focus on what’s happening on the other side of the Mediterranean. This is a major issue for the EU. So far, those who are not guided by real problems, but rather by a desire to quickly grab things from freshly turned up ground. It is deplorable. Exporting revolutions â€" be they democratic, communist or others â€" never brings any good. State, public and civilisational structures are actually disintegrating in the MENA region. The destructive energy released in the process can scorch states that are located far beyond this region. Terrorists (including the Islamic State) are claiming a national status. Moreover, they are already beginning to create quasi-governmental bodies there that engage in the administrative work. On this backdrop, minorities, including Christians, are banished. In Europe, these issues are deemed not politically correct. They are ashamed when we invite them to do something about it together at the OSCE. They wonder why would we focus specifically on Christians? How is that special? The OSCE has held a series of events dedicated to keeping memories about the Holocaust and its victims alive. A few years ago, the OSCE started holding events against Islamophobia. We will be offering an analysis of the processes leading to Christianophobia. On 4-5 December, OSCE ministerial meetings will be held in Basel, where we will present this proposal. The majority of EU member states elude this topic, because they are ashamed to talk about it. Just as they were ashamed to include in what was then the EU constitution drafted by Valery Giscard d'Estaing a phrase that Europe has Christian roots. If you don’t remember or respect your own roots and traditions, how would you respect the traditions and values of other people? This is straightforward logic. Comparing what’s happening now in the Middle East to a period of religious wars in Europe, Israeli political scientist Avineri said that the current turmoil is unlikely to end with what the West means when it says “democratic reforms.” The Arab-Israeli conflict is dead in the water. It's hard to play on several boards at a time. The Americans are trying to accomplish this, but it doesn’t work for them. In 2013, they took nine months to sort out the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I will not go into the reasons, they are known, but they failed at this as well. Now, they asked for more time to try to achieve some progress before the end of 2014, so that the Palestinians wouldn’t go to the UN and sign the Statute of the International Criminal Court, etc. Suddenly, it transpired that negotiations on Iran are underway. The US State Department dumped Palestine to focus on Iran. US Secretary of State John Kerry and I agreed to talk on this subject some time soon. It’s important to understand that you can’t keep the problem of the Palestinian state deeply frozen forever. Failure to resolve it for nearly 70 years has been a major argument of those who recruit extremists in their ranks, “there’s no justice: it was promised to create two states; the Jewish one was created, but they will never create an Arab state.” Used on a hungry Arab street, these arguments sound quite plausible, and they start calling for a fight for justice using other methods. Russian President Vladimir Putin said at the Valdai Club meeting in Sochi that we need a new version of interdependence. This was a very topical statement. The leading powers must return to the negotiating table and agree on a new framework that takes into account the basic legitimate interests of all the key parties (I can’t tell you what it should be called, but it should be based on the UN Charter), to agree on reasonable self-imposed restrictions and collective risk management in a system of international relations underpinned by democratic values. Our Western partners promote respect for the rule of law, democracy and minority opinion within countries, while failing to stand up for the same values in international affairs. This leaves Russia as a pioneer in promoting democracy, justice and rule of international law. A new world order can only be polycentric and should reflect the diversity of cultures and civilisations in today’s world. You are aware of Russia’s commitment to ensuring indivisibility of security in international affairs and holding it in international law. I won’t elaborate on this. I would like to support the point the SVOP has been making that Russia won’t succeed in becoming a major, successful and confident power of the 21st century without developing its eastern regions. Sergei Karaganov was among the first to conceptualise this idea, and I fully agree. Taking Russia’s relations with the Asia Pacific countries to a new level is an absolute priority. Russia worked along these lines at the Beijing APEC meeting and the G20 forum. We will continue moving in this direction in the new environment created by the upcoming launch of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) on 1 January 2015. We have been treated as “subhumans.” For over a decade, Russia has been trying to establish partnership ties with NATO through CSTO. These efforts were not just about putting NATO and CSTO “in the same league.” As a matter of fact, CSTO is focused on catching drug dealers and illegal migrants around the Afghan border, and the North-Atlantic Treaty Organisation is the backbone of the international security forces, which, among other things, were tasked with fighting the terrorist threat and eliminating its financing schemes, which involve drug trafficking. We tried everything: we pleaded and then demanded real-time contact, so that once NATO detects a caravan transporting drugs and is unable to stop it, it alerts us across the border, so that this caravan could be intercepted by CSTO forces. They simply refused to talk to us. In private conversations, our NATO well-wishers (and I actually mean this in the positive way) told us that the alliance can’t view CSTO as an equal partner for ideological reasons. Until recently, we saw the same condescending and arrogant attitude with respect to the Eurasian economic integration. And that despite the fact that countries intending to join the EAEU have much more in common in terms of their economies, history and culture than many EU members. This union is not about creating barriers with anyone. We always stress how open this union is expected to be. I strongly believe that it will make a significant contribution to building a bridge between Europe and Asia Pacific. I can’t fail to mention Russia’s comprehensive partnership with China. Important bilateral decisions have been taken, paving the way to an energy alliance between Russia and China. But there’s more to it. We can now even talk about the emerging technology alliance between the two countries. Russia’s tandem with Beijing is a crucial factor for ensuring international stability and at least some balance in international affairs, as well as ensuring the rule of international law. We will make full use of our relations with India and Vietnam, Russia’s strategic partners, as well as the ASEAN countries. We are also open to expanding cooperation with Japan, if our Japanese neighbours can look at their national interests and stop looking back at some overseas powers. There is no doubt that the European Union is our largest collective partner. No one intends to “shoot himself in the foot” by renouncing cooperation with Europe, although it is now clear that business as usual is no longer an option. This is what our European partners are telling us, but neither do we want to operate the old way. They believed that Russia owed them something, while we want to be on an equal footing. For this reason, things will never be the same again. That said, I’m confident that we will be able to overcome this period, lessons will be learned and a new foundation for our relations will emerge. The idea of creating a single economic and humanitarian space from Lisbon to Vladivostok can now be heard here and there and is gaining traction. Germany’s Foreign Minister, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, has said publicly (while we have been saying it for a long time) that the EU and the EAEU should engage in dialogue. The statement President Vladimir Putin made in Brussels in January 2014, when he proposed the first step by launching negotiations on a free-trade zone between the EU and the Customs Union with an eye on 2020, is no longer viewed as something exotic. All of this has already become part of diplomacy and real politics. Although this is so far only a matter of discussion, I strongly believe that we will one day achieve what is called “the integration of integrations.” This is one of the key topics we want to promote within the OSCE at the Ministerial Council in Basel. Russia is about to assume BRICS and SCO presidency. The two organisations will hold their summits in Ufa. These are very promising organisations for the new age. They are not blocks (especially BRICS), but groups where members share the same interests, representing countries from all continents that share common approaches regarding the future of the global economy, finance and politics.