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BREAKING: Trump will announce sale of anti-tank missiles to neo-nazi Ukraine government

POTUS Trump set to announce anti-tank missile exports to Ukraine.

Alex Christoforou

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US President Donald Trump is expected to announce his approval of a plan to sell anti-tank missiles to the Ukrainian government.

Four State Department sources told ABC News, that the sale of weapons to the neo-nazi putsch in Ukraine would mark a significant escalation in lethal U.S. military support for Ukrainian forces fighting Eastern Ukraine armies.

Behind the push to get Trump to “green light” the sale of weapons to the Ukraine neo-nazi government is none other than John McCain.

ABC News reports that after the announcement of the sale of smaller lethal weapons, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said that Trump should take the next step and approve approval the sale of anti-tank missiles.

“I urge the President to authorize additional sales of defensive lethal weapons, including anti-tank munitions, and to fully utilize security assistance funds provided by the Congress to enable Ukraine to defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity,” McCain said in a statement.

Of course the sale of weapons to a government infested with ultra right nationalists and proud neo-nazis should infuriate the liberal left, but when it comes to war, the liberal left and conservative right seem to always forget identity politics, and march in lockstep towards the next US foreign policy nightmare.

As The Duran reported last week, Trump did away with Obama’s ban on the sale of “lethal weapons” to the neo-nazi putsch in Ukraine, which was still taking place, but in diluted numbers and in covert deals.

Trump has now “opened the floodgates” for overt multi-national weapons exports to Ukraine, meaning big business for the US military industrial complex and their warmonger hawk tools in congress.

Trump’s lift on Obama’s weapons ban coincides with his signature tax bill, which passed the Senate and House, which likely means Congress and the Deep State allowed Trump the domestic win if he would allow them the war they have been craving for years.

ABC News reports…

If the president formally signs off, the plan will be presented to Congress for a 30-day review period where it would need to be approved before the State Departmentcan implement it.

The sale of anti-tank missiles, which could possibly include the U.S.-made Javelin system, provoked a strong reaction from Russia on Saturday, saying it “crossed the line,” and could threaten to derail Trump’s calls for better relations with Moscow.

The total defense package of $47 million includes the sale of 210 anti-tank missiles and 35 launchers. Additional supplies will need to be purchased, according to a senior State Department official.

“We have nothing to announce at this time,” National Security Council spokesperson Marc Raimondi told ABC News.

In a statement, State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert told ABC News: “The United States has decided to provide Ukraine enhanced defensive capabilities as part of our effort to help Ukraine build its long-term defense capacity, to defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity, and to deter further aggression. U.S. assistance is entirely defensive in nature, and as we have always said, Ukraine is a sovereign country and has a right to defend itself. The United States remains committed to the Minsk agreements as the way forward in eastern Ukraine. We have no further comment, at this time.”

Sergei Ryabkov, Russia’s deputy foreign minister, responded harshly to the news of the pending deal in a statement on Saturday.

“The United States in a certain sense crossed the line, announcing the intention to transfer weapons of direct damaging action to Ukraine,” the statement said, translated from Russian. “American weapons can lead to new victims in our neighboring country, to which we cannot remain indifferent.”

Earlier this week, the Kremlin condemned Trump’s approval to allow the commercial sale of small arms and light weapons to Ukraine.

Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said that sale “will once again motivate the hotheads” in the Ukrainian government and “unleash bloodshed again.” The head of the Russian parliament’s defense committee, Vladimir Shamanov, also condemned it as a “sophisticated and irresponsible step.”

A State Department source stressed that the move to supply even more powerful anti-tank missile is purely for defensive purposes.

ABC News first reported that the inter-agency memo has been sitting on the president’s desk for weeks.

If Trump announces his approval, the memo will likely make its way to Capitol Hill. Congress has 30 days to approve the measure. There is broad support by Senate Republicans.

Zerohedge reports that congressional hawks have long sought greater direct military escalation in the Ukrainian proxy war.

But it appears that Trump is now falling into the hands of Washington’s usual warmongers and the national security deep state which always seems to eventually get its way. McCain issued a statement this week pushing for inclusion of anti-tank missiles in the earlier reported package: “I urge the President to authorize additional sales of defensive lethal weapons, including anti-tank munitions, and to fully utilize security assistance funds provided by the Congress to enable Ukraine to defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity,” McCain said.

Not to be outdone, Senator Tom Cotton (R., Ark.) – the only congressman who can possibly “out-hawk” John McCain – said of the new initiative for arms exports to Ukraine: “This is a break from failed Obama era policies to make Russia pay a cost for its aggression. With this decision, the Trump administration is reminding Vladimir Putin and his cronies that they lost the Cold War, and we won’t tolerate their bullying of our friend Ukraine.”

Is this a deep state victory? The Washington Post previously described that “the decision over whether to allow lethal arms sales to Ukraine had been sitting on Trump’s desk for months” even after The National Security Council presented the president with various options for moving forward “months ago”. But concerning the impetus behind internal White House deliberations to move on the issue, the Washington Post reported:

“Another senior Trump administration official said that Trump personally approved the decision to allow the issuing of the license after being presented a decision memo by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. While there was never a formal ban on such weapons transfers, the decision was discussed internally as a lifting of the de facto Obama administration restrictions, the official said.”

Congressional anti-Russia hawks have long sought greater long-term military engagement along Russia’s European border, especially after the May 2014 referendum which saw the pro-Russian Ukrainian regions of Donetsk and Luhansk declare independence from Kiev. And though Congress originally authorized weapons sales via the Ukraine Freedom Support Act signed into law in December 2014, the Obama administration never made the decision to actually follow through on the legislation.

But after years of covert American involvement in the Ukrainian proxy and civil war which has raged since 2014 – and which a leaked recording confirmed was precipitated by the US State Department – it appears that hawks like McCain, Cotton, and Corker are finally getting their way. 

Perhaps more scary in terms of escalating an unnecessary war which has already taken more than 10,000 lives since 2014, the Kiev government and some in Washington are already pushing for putting anti-aircraft weapons in the hands of Ukrainian forces.

“What we are awaiting and have called for is the provision of lethal defense weapons that are more advanced – a larger package that is under consideration right now, including anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles,” a Ukrainian official told ABC News. “We are expecting this decision and would welcome it.”

And as multiple reports have noted this week, fighting in eastern Ukraine is heating up after a period of relative stalemate and calm, and after general Western media silence on the war. Likely with the announcement of US supplied anti-tank missiles and the additional possibility of US anti-aircraft weapons being openly shipped into the conflict, it will most certainly return to the international and media spotlight.

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4 resignations and counting: May’s government ‘falling apart before our eyes’ over Brexit deal

The beginning of the end for Theresa May’s government.

The Duran

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Via RT


Four high profile resignations have followed on the heels of Theresa May’s announcement that her cabinet has settled on a Brexit deal, with Labour claiming that the Conservative government is at risk of completely dissolving.

Shailesh Vara, the Minister of State at the Northern Ireland Office was the first top official to resign after the prime minister announced that her cabinet had reached a draft EU withdrawal agreement.

An hour after his announcement, Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab – the man charged with negotiating and finalizing the deal – said he was stepping down, stating that the Brexit deal in its current form suffers from deep flaws. Esther McVey, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, submitted her letter of resignation shortly afterwards. More resignations have followed.

Labour’s shadow Cabinet Office minister, Jon Trickett, predicted that this is the beginning of the end for May’s government.

The government is falling apart before our eyes as for a second time the Brexit secretary has refused to back the prime minister’s Brexit plan. This so-called deal has unraveled before our eyes

Shailesh Vara: UK to be stuck in ‘a half-way house with no time limit’

Kicking off Thursday’s string of resignations, Vara didn’t mince words when describing his reservations about the cabinet-stamped Brexit deal.

Theresa May’s EU withdrawal agreement leaves the UK in a “halfway house with no time limit on when we will finally become a sovereign nation,” his letter of resignation states. Vara went on to warn that the draft agreement leaves a number of critical issues undecided, predicting that it “will take years to conclude” a trade deal with the bloc.

“We will be locked in a customs arrangement indefinitely, bound by rules determined by the EU over which we have no say,” he added.

Dominic Raab: Deal can’t be ‘reconciled’ with promises made to public

Announcing his resignation on Thursday morning, Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab tweeted: “I cannot in good conscience support the terms proposed for our deal with the EU.”

Raab claimed that the deal in its current form gives the EU veto power over the UK’s ability to annul the deal.

No democratic nation has ever signed up to be bound by such an extensive regime.

Former Conservative Party leader Iain Duncan Smith said that Raab’s resignation as Brexit secretary is “devastating” for May.

“It sounds like he has been ignored,” he told the BBC.

Raab’s departure will undoubtedly encourage other Brexit supporters to question the deal, political commentators have observed.

Esther McVey: Deal ‘does not honor’ Brexit referendum

Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey didn’t hold back when issuing her own letter of resignation. According to McVey, the deal “does not honour” the result of the Brexit referendum, in which a majority of Brits voted to leave the European Union.

Suella Braverman: ‘Unable to sincerely support’ deal

Suella Braverman, a junior minister in Britain’s Brexit ministry, issued her resignation on Thursday, saying that she couldn’t stomach the deal.

“I now find myself unable to sincerely support the deal agreed yesterday by cabinet,” she said in a letter posted on Twitter.

Suella Braverman, MP Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Department for Exiting the EU © Global Look Press / Joel Goodman
Braverman said that the deal is not what the British people voted for, and threatened to tear the country apart.

“It prevents an unequivocal exit from a customs union with the EU,” she said.

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Five Saudis Face Death Penalty Over Khashoggi Killing; Crown Prince Cleared

According to the Saudi prosecutor, five people charged are believed to have been involved in “ordering and executing the crime.”

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Via Zerohedge


Saudi Arabia public prosecutor Sheikh Shaalan al-Shaalan said on Thursday that the kingdom will seek the death penalty for five suspects among the 11 charged in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, confirming suspicions that members of the murder squad purportedly sent to “interrogate” Khashoggi will now themselves face beheadings as the Saudi Royal Family closes ranks around the Crown Prince, per the FT.

As for Mohammed bin Salman who runs the day to day affairs of the world’s top oil exporter and is the de facto head of OPEC, the prosecutor said had “no knowledge” of the mission, effectively absolving him of any domestic suspicion, if not international.

The charges were handed down after the kingdom dismissed five senior intelligence officers and arrested 18 Saudi nationals in connection with Khashoggi’s disappearance. The Saudi insider-turned-dissident journalist disappeared on Oct. 2 after entering the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul to pick up documents that would have allowed him to marry his fiance. Khashoggi was a legal resident of Virginia.

According to the Saudi prosecutor, five people charged are believed to have been involved in “ordering and executing the crime,” according to CNN.

The prosecutor said that the former Saudi deputy intelligence chief, Ahmed al-Assiri, ordered a mission to force Khashoggi to go back to Saudi Arabia and formed a team of 15 people.

They were divided into three groups, the Saudi Public Prosecutor said: a negotiation team, an intelligence team and a logistical team.

It was the head of the negotiating team who ordered the killing of Khashoggi, the prosecutor said.

The Saudis stuck by latest (ever changing) narrative that the Washington Post columnist was killed after a mission to abduct him went awry. The deputy chief of intelligence ordered that Khashoggi be brought back to the kingdom, Shaalan said. The team killed him after the talks failed and his body was handed to a “collaborator” in Turkey, he said.

Asked whether Saud al-Qahtanti, an aide to Prince Mohammed, had any role in the case, Shaalan said that a royal adviser had a coordinating role and had provided information. The former adviser was now under investigation, the prosecutor said, declining to reveal the names of any of those facing charges.

Al-Shaalan did reveal that a total of 21 suspects are now being held in connection with the case. Notably, the decision to charge the 5 comes after National Security Advisor John Bolton repudiated reports that a recording of Khashoggi’s murder made by Turkish authorities suggested that Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman was behind the murder plot.

But as long as OPEC+ is planning to do “whatever it takes” to boost oil prices, the US’s willingness to give the Saudis a pass could always be tested if crude prices again turn sharply higher.

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U.S. May Impose Sanctions Against Turkey Over S-400 “Threat” To F-35

The United States continues to consider the S-400 air defense system a threat to its F-35 fifth generation stealth fighter platform.

The Duran

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Authored by Al Masdar News:


Turkish officials have repeatedly insisted that Ankara’s purchase of the advanced Russian air defense system poses no threat whatsoever to the NATO alliance. Last month, the Turkish defense ministry announced that delivery of S-400s to Turkey would begin in October 2019.

The United States continues to consider the S-400 air defense system a threat to its F-35 fifth generation stealth fighter platform, and may impose sanctions against Ankara, Turkey’s Anadolu news agency has reported, citing a high-ranking source in Washington.

“I can’t say for certain whether sanctions will be imposed on Ankara over the S-400 contract, but the possibility is there. The US administration is not optimistic about this issue,” the source said.

While admitting that Turkey was a sovereign state and therefore had the right to make decisions on whom it buys its weapons from, the source stressed that from the perspective of these weapons’ integration with NATO systems, the S-400 was “problematic.”

The source also characterized the deployment of S-400s in areas where US F-35 fifth-generation stealth fighters are set to fly as “a threat,” without elaborating.

Emphasizing that negotiations between Washington and Ankara on the issue were “continuing,” the source said that there were also “positive tendencies” in negotiations between the two countries on the procurement of the Patriot system, Washington’s closest analogue to the S-400 in terms of capabilities.

Designed to stop enemy aircraft, cruise and ballistic missiles at ranges of up to 400 km and altitudes of up to 30 km, the S-400 is currently the most advanced mobile air defense system in Russia’s arsenal. Russia and India signed a ruble-denominated contract on the delivery of five regiments of S-400s worth $5 billion late last month.

Last week, the Saudi Ambassador to Russia said that talks on the sale of the system to his country were ongoing. In addition to Russia, S-400s are presently operated by Belarus and China, with Beijing expecting another delivery of S-400s by 2020.

Washington has already slapped China with sanctions over its purchase of S-400s and Su-35 combat aircraft in September. India, however, has voiced confidence that it would not be hit with similar restrictions, which the US Treasury has pursued under the 2017 Counter America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA).

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