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BREAKING: US searches of Russian diplomatic properties begin (FIRST VIDEOS)

Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has called the FBI searches “a travesty of justice”.

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US authorities have begun raid style searches of diplomatic properties in the United States which are legally the property of the Russian Federation.

The Russian Foreign Ministry has published the first videos of the US authorities inside the Russian properties and promises to publish more as they become available.

Addition videos show men described as FBI workers climbing into ceiling spaces during their search

The photos below show FBI personnel entering the Russian diplomatic property.

The Foreign Ministry also published photos of the diplomatic facilities shortly before the FBI search indicating that most of the items had been removed.

Russia has correctly slammed the move as being unprecedented. Beyond this it is illegal according to the international law inscribed in the Vienna Conventions.

READ MORE: US actions against Russian diplomatic and consular property are illegal–here’s why

 

 

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englishvinal
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englishvinal

More deliberate isolation. Why would any country want to send Ambassadors and other Russian personnel into the United States?… They really do NOT need to have their own people inside the US.. whatever needs to be negotiated can be done from Canada or Mexico.. or anywhere in Central America… International flights started avoiding US air space about 7 years ago, when the US began harassing everybody who might only have been sitting in their plane seat waiting for the fuel-up in Florida.. and never even entered the airport. Flights fuel up in Panama now… and pay Panama the fees…. Assets,… Read more »

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

It’s called the Noahide Laws, which GHWB acknowledged to be the sole repository of all true morality.
The jew is judged according to the Ten Commandments; but not considering the Gentile to be human, he places him beneath the harsh yoke of said laws, administered not by God, but by those gods on earth, the sanhedrin.
This is what Orwell was speaking about when he referred to the boot stamping upon your face for ever.
This is what the jewish New World Order looks like; and this is how it behaves, in that home of judaism, the United States of Terror.

BobValdez
Guest
BobValdez

Time for the FSB and GRU to “search” ALL us embassy property, vehicles and homes of ALL us diplomatic staff in Russia. NO exception.

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

Without warning also. Staff members should be – courteously, kindly, but firmly – held incommunicado in a nice hotel, until the searches are completed.

Simon
Guest
Simon

When life gives you lemons…..make lemonade. This was brilliant. MID opened up their premises to their media, they even had live streamed coverage. It surprised me. What could the US do? They just looked arrogant and stupid, any chance of planting fake ‘gotcha’ evidence evaporated. Hats off to the Russian Min Foreign Affairs. It’s what makes Russia the king of adversaries – they are smart and subtle. 😉 Sorry (to many on this site), but no need for war threats. This game is not being played in the US media (or diplomatic) space or the Russian. The real player is… Read more »

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

Sorry Simon, but “the rest of the world” is not homogeneous. The people like yourself who can see America looking like the scum they are, are very much the minority. The majority are seeing America as treating Russia with contempt and also as a potential aggressor – and Russia seems so far to have no answer. Russia looks either a fool, a weak scared country, or a suspect, depending on the train of thought of viewers. It makes me furious and yes, whilst I agree that filming this and showing the yank troglodytes had nothing was clever and a good… Read more »

Simon
Guest
Simon

Isabella, your frustration and anger are TOTALLY justified. But we are dealing here with something between a rabid dog and sulky teenage bully. Just what is the kick in the cojones that we can try to shut them down?! How about a thermobaric bomb on the illegitimate US base at Al-Tanf? Did I go too far? You can see the problem in dealing with them. You tell me what should be done. In the meantime every time that they are mocked, humiliated and shamed is a step in the right direction. They don’t even have an ‘Empire’. It is virtual,… Read more »

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

Ohh, dont think I can agree with you there Simon. I’ve long said America has an Empire – tell me how it differs?? They have their military in countries – about 800+ bases as far as we know. They use said countries as their own backyard. Several have asked them to leave and they just take no notice. They flood countries with their money, they behave exactly as they please, and are answerable to no-one. Japan, Europe, Afghanistan, the Middle East !! They look like an Empire to me I’m afraid. Yes, I agree with you regarding the problem of… Read more »

Simon
Guest
Simon

Isabella, It’s very easy. This is a ‘war’ between reality and virtual reality. Russia is based on reality. Its military are real, its reserves, low debt, and gold – real, its politics and strategies are real. It is not alone. China and others live in the real world. We only have to prick the bubble of the virtual reality that is the West. What is left after that will be – reality. PS I disagree, there is no American Empire – if there were then eg they could raise an army of 100,000 Afghans and invade…some place. The Brits could… Read more »

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

I think with the Brits in India, things were a bit different, and the mindset. The average Asian – certainly the Indians of those times – admired strength. Many saw the armies of the Dutch East India Company – and then of Queen Victoria, whom they all admired enormously – as mighty, and to be revered. Britain and India forged a link of understanding that I must admit slightly puzzles me. I have known and had friendships with many Indians, and note that sense of a bridge of understanding being present. I dont quite know why – but it’s been… Read more »

Rex drabble
Guest
Rex drabble

Isabella,You are plain wrong,Your kind of talk doesnt make things better.It is just a continuation of endless,useless non constructive points of view.Talk is cheap.action speaks louder and Russia is the master in that regard

André De Koning
Guest
André De Koning

But it might be falling apart as we speak: these are symptoms of becoming powerless, even though it might take a while for the dying beast to actually collapse. Like the Rise and Fall of Civilizations (Toynbee), the symptoms are visible, so there is hope yet for the world to see Russia/China and BRICS to develop and show a better way than war and aggression and arrogance.

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

It’s certainly what we are all hoping for Andre, I agree.

TecumsehUnfaced
Guest
TecumsehUnfaced

“Everybody hates the British” is what I kept hearing from people in those countries.

Gonzogal
Guest
Gonzogal

“Those observers who criticize Russia for being “weak” or “naive” simply project their own, mostly American, “reaction set” on the Russians and fail to realize the simply truth that Russians are not Americans, they think differently and they act differently. For one thing, the Russians don’t care if they are perceived as “weak” or “naive”. In fact, they would prefer to be perceived as such if that furthers their goals and confuses the opponent about their real intentions and capabilities. The Russians know that they did not build the biggest country on the planet by being “weak” or “naive” and… Read more »

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

I am very well aware of how Russians think, and how differently to the West they think. Russia has been my subject of study for some years now.
How others see Russia is what drives them – that is something Russia has to take into account. You have to know what your enemy is thinking – and how it thinks. No good just going on your own knowledge.

Gonzogal
Guest
Gonzogal

No insult intended. I firmly believe that Russia/Putin know exactly what the West thinks of them and how they “see” Russia. As Putin says it is actions that tell the truth and the West has made action against RF in every way possible. It has been said that Putin studied Sun Tzu and we know he plays chess. The ways he has confounded the US’s moves against RF in so many ways shows this, and at the same time shows the impotence of the West to do anything of REAL damage to Russia. Should Russia REALLY risk a war with… Read more »

Gonzogal
Guest
Gonzogal

Here is an article for you : “Russia and the Chinese Petrodollar Kill Shot” https://www.roguemoney.net/blog/ru-china-petrodollar-killshot

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

Good one, thank you Gonzogal.

Rastislav Veľká Morava
Member
Rastislav Veľká Morava

Very well said.

Gonzogal
Guest
Gonzogal

Thank you but those are not my words but a quote from the article linked in my comment.

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

“You tell me what should be done”.
OK.
Something highly symbolic.
RF to announce the end of all US-Russian collaboration in space.
No more sales of Russian rocket engines to the Children of Darkness.
No more lying, dirty, contemptible, masonic, yanquis in space.
As a symbolic move par excellence, this is the ideal.

Let them be confined to the gutter where they grew up, and where they exist, and have their being.

Bob Trajkoski
Guest
Bob Trajkoski

AMERICA LOOK AS WHAT THEY WHAT ARE DOING IN THERE AMBASIS AND SUSPECT EVERYONE IS THE SAME .USA IS A CRIMINAL STATE

Trauma2000
Guest
Trauma2000

So it begins. Lets all watch with baited breath at the ‘incriminating evidence’ the FBI and CIA ‘find’ and ‘disclose to the world.’

Seán Murphy
Guest
Seán Murphy

Except they’re not going to “find”it.

Trauma2000
Guest
Trauma2000

Oh. But they WILL. I’m almost certain that the evidence WILL BE FOUND. It will be found hidden in between the walls; or in a pile of documents the Diplomats “forgot” to shred; or it will be ‘decoded’ from the ashes of the documents that were incinerated.

They WILL find the evidence. Of that we can be sure.

Hans Zandvliet
Guest
Hans Zandvliet

And if they don’t, they will plant some ‘evidence’.
Hell, they only need to utter some accusations: since the February 2014 coup in the Ukraine, we’ve learned time and again that evidence is not even needed anymore.

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

Yeah. Kind of familiar scenario, isn’t it? Where have seen this before? America, accusations, illegal atrocities, no evidence found – oh yes. Iraq. Familiar pattern.

Trauma2000
Guest
Trauma2000

Yeah… Ah, from memory; Iraq; 911, Syria, Russian Election Meddling ‘Inquisition,’ Libya, MH17 Shoot Down, “Russia did it” French Election, Mythical Russian Invasion of Donbass and Luhansk; Funding the Taliban in Afghanistan…

There’s probably about a dozen I’ve missed.

F Flint Rider
Guest
F Flint Rider

shame…shame…shame….clang!!!

Freethinking Влади́мир
Guest
Freethinking Влади́мир

Effing Zio globalist tools. I have no respect for America. Absolutely none! I feel sorry for the 0.01% red pilled people, but other than that they can suffocate for what I care.

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

Every single thing America has done on the international stage, bar a few minor token gestures has, since about 1945, been illegal. What point is there now in grizzling about how this is illegal? You think they give a monkey’s cuss?. Yes, so was the destruction of Libya, the lies and invasion of Iraq – illegal. Didn’t stop them and they’ve paid not one iota for it. They act with utter impunity, and they know it. The AngloArrogantAristos of America dont give a rats ass about “illegal”. As far as they are concerned, if they want to do something, that… Read more »

Gonzogal
Guest
Gonzogal

comment image

Gonzogal
Guest
Gonzogal

“The most pathetic thing about all this is how the AngloZionists are misreading the Russians. From a Russian cultural point of view, everything the West and NATO has been doing as signs of weakness. Why would a strong alliance need to engage in meaningless threats (NATO battalions or ABM systems)? Why would a strong alliance seek safety in numbers? Why would a strong alliance act is if reality did not exist? From a Russian point of view all that saber-rattling and grandstanding amount to a gigantic admission weakness and they are totally unimpressed. And they are not shy about expressing… Read more »

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

Yes, I in fact was writing – I think over 18 months ago – that in my opinion we would find that Putin’s main aim has always been to bring America down via crippling her international currency standing, and all the back up [undeserved] which that has given her. I agree that, when Putin said, in the Stone “Putin interviews”in answer to Stone’s comment, of the rabid hatred coupled with lack of any insight and insanity of the Ruling clique “I fear them”, Putin replied with “I fear them too” — wasn’t because of any strength NATO/US have. I am… Read more »

Rex drabble
Guest
Rex drabble

Let them.Who cares?Russia has proven time and again they are much smarter than the US and followers.The US shows the whole world how corrupt and stupid they really are.They will bring themselves down.Enjoy the show,you are watching the world change for the better,relax and put your faith in Mr Putin,,,,,The greatest world leader we will ever see in our time.Buy some pop corn and put your feet up.

Matt Hol
Guest
Matt Hol

My first baby was born yesterday. And I wake up to great power war escalation not seen since the 1940’s.

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

Congratulations Matt. I hope Mum and Baby are doing well, and continue to thrive. Dont let the scum of the earth spoil your day. It is one that will never come again – by definition, there can only ever be one “first”. So have a wonderful happy day, thinking of all the other wonderful day days to come. They have no part in life, joy, and beauty.

Matt Hol
Guest
Matt Hol

Thanks so much.

Gonzogal
Guest
Gonzogal

Congratulations!

Gonzogal
Guest
Gonzogal

Here is a super interesting interview that points to the fact that this “precedent setting” violation of international law could be in preparation for the US/UK storming of the Ecuadoran embassy in London to take out Assange,,,,
https://youtu.be/KApwpwxnYGY?t=5m11s

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

It’s a good point. She also made the point I did here – that it has strengthened the view of many that Russia is “guilty” of something.
However, the other thing it might be doing is adding fuel to the fire of anti-Russian sentiments in order to set the picture for a False Flag.
Never forget the False Flags – and that they always “set the scene” first.

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

Surely you’re not a conspiracy theorist, Isabella?
I know our governments would never, ever, do anything utterly immoral and illegal.

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

🙂
Nah – of course they wouldn’t Tim. It’s just these nightmares I keep getting!!

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

🙂

Daisy Adler
Guest
Daisy Adler

FBI searching the attics of the Russian Consulate, but never went to search the basement of Clinton’s residence, where she hid illegal computer servers …
FBI, the joke of the day.

Voltaire
Guest
Voltaire

The FBI never searched the DNC to find who hacked it either……..that is gros negligence and means that no poroof will ever be provided of Russian hacking of the DNC….

The FBI are a bunch of amateur and corrupted incompetents…

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

Or the blood-soaked cellars beneath Planet Pizza.

Daisy Adler
Guest
Daisy Adler

“What are our people going to do in your ambassador’s apartments or in the consulate in San Francisco? Look for illegal recipes for borsch? Of course, Russians have to respond and to go into our consulate in St. Petersburg – looking for what? Perhaps, for too many copies of Doctor Zhivago in the embassy’s library?”
– John Graham, former US ambassador

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

Russia, by the grace of God, hangs her international reputation foursquare upon the Word of God. She is a Christian nation; and this is what the jew cannot abide, or tolerate. The scenario we see playing out here has played out before, in another land, and in another time; but the actors remain the same, the script unmodified. Good against evil; force, brutality, lies, murders, and thefts; against The Truth. Let us thank God for Vladimir Putin and the Russian Federation, upon whom, and upon which, the entire Light of the World shines, and all the more brightly, in this… Read more »

seby
Guest
seby

I wonder if this atrocious illegal bullshit and the nyt and msm dancing again to what Robert Parry describes as “Russia-gate’s Totalitarian Style” has something to do with the Lithuanian zionist’s panic visit to Sochi recently?

Win
Guest
Win

I think this, along with news of the criminal behaviour of their police just helps further the growing understanding in the world that the USA is on the way to becoming a failed state where the rule of law has been discarded.

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

They are still following the law; but the law has changed; it is now the Noahide Laws which are being implemented.
Beneath which, there is no concept of righteousness and equality, only oppression, and evil.
This, my friends, is the jewish mentality.
This is what the Palestinians have had to endure for seventy years, whilst we looked away.

Shue
Guest
Shue

LoL!!… Good move, they left the place bare naked, impossible to falsify anything.

mikhas
Guest
mikhas

It also means that the US may violate int. Law anywere including Ecuador’s embassy in london, grab Assange and the English will comply.

Strip search the CIA agents at the remaining US consulates in Russia, close and send the f*ckers home

Hans Zandvliet
Guest
Hans Zandvliet

As far as I know, this kind of violation of diplomatic immunity is unprecedented. As far as I can remember, this never happened; not even during the Cold War (1946 – 1991), not even during WW-2, not even during the Interbellum (1918 – 1939), not even during WW-1!
And all these unprecedented violations of basic diplomatic relations, just because of a totally unsustantiated fairytale of Russian intervention in US elections?
Washington has seriously lost touch with reality; not only domestically but also internationally!

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

Driven mad by the jewish infection of their society, they are now nothing more than rabid dogs, fit only to be destroyed.
There can only be one end for this society of madmen, and madwomen.

Hans Zandvliet
Guest
Hans Zandvliet

I simpathize with your feelings, but to prevent the Washington psycopaths from dragging us down with them by blowing up our entire planet, we’d better use our brains instead of our hearts, to give them check-mate.

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

The two always go together.
Brains, but informed by the heart.
Without which, the brains are nothing.

Based ✓ᴺᵃᵗᶦᵒᶰᵃˡᶦˢᵗ
Guest
Based ✓ᴺᵃᵗᶦᵒᶰᵃˡᶦˢᵗ

Jew world order loading

Vera Gottlieb
Guest
Vera Gottlieb

And now, without any further delay, Russia should respond in kind.

Mr Misanthropic
Guest
Mr Misanthropic

international laws apply to every other country, USA are the exceptional people aren’t they

Mario8282
Guest
Mario8282

US Government performs an unprecedented show of monumental stupidity. As everybody expected: nothing to be found. Maximum PR damage. EGG ON US FACE BY OWN CHOICE. Somebody high in the US leadership must very much hate the USA.

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EXPLOSIVE: Michael Cohen sentencing memo exposes serial liar with nothing to offer Mueller (Video)

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 38.

Alex Christoforou

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The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris take a quick look at the Michael Cohen sentencing memo which paints the picture of a man who was not as close to Trump as he made it out to be…a serial liar and cheat who leveraged his thin connections to the Trump organization for money and fame.

It was Cohen himself who proudly labelled himself as Trump’s “fixer”. The sentencing memo hints at the fact that even Mueller finds no value to Cohen in relation to the ongoing Trump-Russia witch hunt investigation.

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Via Axios

Special counsel Robert Mueller and federal prosecutors in New York have each submitted sentencing memos for President Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen, after Cohen pleaded guilty in two different cases related to his work for Trump and the Trump Organization.

The big picture: The Southern District of New York recommended Cohen serve a range of 51 to 63 months for four crimes — “willful tax evasion, making false statements to a financial institution, illegal campaign contributions, and making false statements to Congress.” Mueller, meanwhile, did not take a position on the length of Cohen’s statement, but said he has made substantial efforts to assist the investigation.

Southern District of New York

Mueller investigation

Michael J. Stern, a federal prosecutor with the Justice Department for 25 years in Detroit and Los Angeles noted via USA Today

In support of their request that he serve no time in prison, Cohen’s attorneys offered a series of testimonials from friends who described the private Michael Cohen as a “truly caring” man with a “huge heart” who is not only “an upstanding, honorable, salt of the earth man” but also a “selfless caretaker.”

The choirboy portrayed by Cohen’s lawyers stands in sharp opposition to Cohen’s public persona as Trump’s legal bulldog, who once threatened a reporter with: “What I’m going to do to you is going to be f—ing disgusting. Do you understand me?”

Prosecutors focused their sentencing memo on Cohen as Mr. Hyde. Not only did they detail Cohen’s illegal activities, which include millions of dollars of fraud, they also recognized the public damage that stemmed from his political crimes — describing Cohen as “a man who knowingly sought to undermine core institutions of our democracy.”

Rebuffing efforts by Cohen’s attorneys to recast him as a good guy who made a few small mistakes, prosecutors cited texts, statements of witnesses, recordings, documents and other evidence that proved Cohen got ahead by employing a “pattern of deception that permeated his professional life.” The prosecutors attributed Cohen’s crimes to “personal greed,” an effort to “increase his power and influence,” and a desire to maintain his “opulent lifestyle.”

Perhaps the most damning reveal in the U.S. Attorney’s sentencing memo is that Cohen refused to fully cooperate. That’s despite his public relations campaign to convince us that he is a new man who will cooperate with any law enforcement authority, at any time, at any place.

As a former federal prosecutor who handled hundreds of plea deals like Cohen’s, I can say it is extremely rare for any credit to be recommended when a defendant decides not to sign a full cooperation deal. The only reason for a refusal would be to hide information. The prosecutors said as much in their sentencing memo: Cohen refused “to be debriefed on other uncharged criminal conduct, if any, in his past,” and “further declined” to discuss “other areas of investigative interest.”

 

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Canada to Pay Heavy Price for Trudeau’s Groupie Role in US Banditry Against China

Trudeau would had to have known about the impending plot to snatch Huawei CFO Wanzhou and moreover that he personally signed off on it.

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Authored by Finian Cunningham via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


You do have to wonder about the political savvy of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his government. The furious fallout from China over the arrest of a senior telecoms executive is going to do severe damage to Canadian national interests.

Trudeau’s fawning over American demands is already rebounding very badly for Canada’s economy and its international image.

The Canadian arrest – on behalf of Washington – of Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Chinese telecom giant Huawei, seems a blatant case of the Americans acting politically and vindictively. If the Americans are seen to be acting like bandits, then the Canadians are their flunkies.

Wanzhou was detained on December 1 by Canadian federal police as she was boarding a commercial airliner in Vancouver. She was reportedly handcuffed and led away in a humiliating manner which has shocked the Chinese government, media and public.

The business executive has since been released on a $7.4 million bail bond, pending further legal proceedings. She is effectively being kept under house arrest in Canada with electronic ankle tagging.

To add insult to injury, it is not even clear what Wanzhou is being prosecuted for. The US authorities have claimed that she is guilty of breaching American sanctions against Iran by conducting telecoms business with Tehran. It is presumed that the Canadians arrested Wanzhou at the request of the Americans. But so far a US extradition warrant has not been filed. That could take months. In the meantime, the Chinese businesswoman will be living under curfew, her freedom denied.

Canadian legal expert Christopher Black says there is no juridical case for Wanzhou’s detention. The issue of US sanctions on Iran is irrelevant and has no grounds in international law. It is simply the Americans applying their questionable national laws on a third party. Black contends that Canada has therefore no obligation whatsoever to impose those US laws regarding Iran in its territory, especially given that Ottawa and Beijing have their own separate bilateral diplomatic relations.

In any case, what the real issue is about is the Americans using legal mechanisms to intimidate and beat up commercial rivals. For months now, Washington has made it clear that it is targeting Chinese telecoms rivals as commercial competitors in a strategic sector. US claims about China using telecoms for “spying” and “infiltrating” American national security are bogus propaganda ruses to undermine these commercial rivals through foul means.

It also seems clear from US President Donald Trump’s unsubtle comments this week to Reuters, saying he would “personally intervene” in the Meng case “if it helped trade talks with China”, that the Huawei executive is being dangled like a bargaining chip. It was a tacit admission by Trump that the Americans really don’t have a legal case against her.

Canada’s foreign minister Chrystia Freeland bounced into damage limitation mode following Trump’s thuggish comments. She said that the case should not be “politicized” and that the legal proceedings should not be tampered with. How ironic is that?

The whole affair has been politicized from the very beginning. Meng’s arrest, or as Christopher Black calls it “hostage-taking”, is driven by Washington’s agenda of harassment against China for commercial reasons, under a legal pretext purportedly about Iranian sanctions.

When Trump revealed the cynical expediency of him “helping to free Wanzhou”, then the Canadians realized they were also being exposed for the flunkies that they are for American banditry. That’s why Freeland was obliged to quickly adopt the fastidious pretense of legal probity.

Canadian premier Justin Trudeau has claimed that he wasn’t aware of the American request for Wanzhou’s detention. Trudeau is being pseudo. For such a high-profile infringement against a senior Chinese business leader, Ottawa must have been fully briefed by the Americans. Christopher Black, the legal expert, believes that Trudeau would had to have known about the impending plot to snatch Wanzhou and moreover that he personally signed off on it.

What Trudeau and his government intended to get out of performing this sordid role for American thuggery is far from clear. Maybe after being verbally mauled by Trump as “weak and dishonest” at the G7 summit earlier this year, in June, Trudeau decided it was best to roll over and be a good little puppy for the Americans in their dirty deed against China.

But already it has since emerged that Canada is going to pay a very heavy price indeed for such dubious service to Washington. Beijing has warned that it will take retaliation against both Washington and Ottawa. And it is Ottawa that is more vulnerable to severe repercussions.

This week saw two Canadian citizens, one a former diplomat, detained in China on spying charges.

Canadian business analysts are also warning that Beijing can inflict harsh economic penalties on Ottawa. An incensed Chinese public have begun boycotting Canadian exports and sensitive Canadian investments in China are now at risk from being blocked by Beijing. A proposed free trade deal that was being negotiated between Ottawa and Beijing now looks dead in the water.

And if Trudeau’s government caves in to the excruciating economic pressure brought to bear by Beijing and then abides by China’s demand to immediately release Meng Wanzhou, Ottawa will look like a pathetic, gutless lackey to Washington. Canada’s reputation of being a liberal, independent state will be shredded. Even then the Chinese are unlikely to forget Trudeau’s treachery.

With comic irony, there’s a cringemaking personal dimension to this unseemly saga.

During the 197os when Trudeau’s mother Margaret was a thirty-something socialite heading for divorce from his father, then Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, she was often in the gossip media for indiscretions at nightclubs. Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards claims in his autobiography that Margaret Trudeau was a groupie for the band, having flings with Mick Jagger and Ronnie Wood. Her racy escapades and louche lifestyle brought shame to many Canadians.

Poor Margaret Trudeau later wound up divorced, disgraced, financially broke and scraping a living from scribbling tell-all books.

Justin, her eldest son, is finding out that being a groupie for Washington’s banditry is also bringing disrepute for him and his country.

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US Commits To “Indefinite” Occupation Of Syria; Controls Region The Size Of Croatia

Raqqa is beginning to look more and more like Baghdad circa 2005.

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Via Zerohedge


“We don’t want the Americans. It’s occupation” — a Syrian resident in US-controlled Raqqa told Stars and Stripes military newspaper. This as the Washington Post noted this week that “U.S. troops will now stay in Syria indefinitely, controlling a third of the country and facing peril on many fronts.”

Like the “forever war” in Afghanistan, will we be having the same discussion over the indefinite occupation of Syria stretching two decades from now? A new unusually frank assessment in Stars and Stripes bluntly lays out the basic facts concerning the White House decision to “stay the course” until the war’s close:

That decision puts U.S. troops in overall control, perhaps indefinitely, of an area comprising nearly a third of Syria, a vast expanse of mostly desert terrain roughly the size of Louisiana.

The Pentagon does not say how many troops are there. Officially, they number 503, but earlier this year an official let slip that the true number may be closer to 4,000

A prior New Yorker piece described the US-occupied area east of the Euphrates as “an area about the size of Croatia.” With no Congressional vote, no public debate, and not even so much as an official presidential address to the nation, the United States is settling in for another endless occupation of sovereign foreign soil while relying on the now very familiar post-911 AUMF fig leaf of “legality”.

Like the American public and even some Pentagon officials of late have been pointing out for years regarding Afghanistan, do US forces on the ground even know what the mission is? The mission may be undefined and remain ambiguously to “counter Iran”, yet the dangers and potential for major loss in blood and treasure loom larger than ever.

According to Stars and Stripes the dangerous cross-section of powder keg conflicts and geopolitical players means “a new war” is on the horizon:

The new mission raises new questions, about the role they will play and whether their presence will risk becoming a magnet for regional conflict and insurgency.

The area is surrounded by powers hostile both to the U.S. presence and the aspirations of the Kurds, who are governing the majority-Arab area in pursuit of a leftist ideology formulated by an imprisoned Turkish Kurdish leader. Signs that the Islamic State is starting to regroup and rumblings of discontent within the Arab community point to the threat of an insurgency.

Without the presence of U.S. troops, these dangers would almost certainly ignite a new war right away, said Ilham Ahmed, a senior official with the Self-Administration of North and East Syria, as the self-styled government of the area is called.

“They have to stay. If they leave and there isn’t a solution for Syria, it will be catastrophic,” she said.

But staying also heralds risk, and already the challenges are starting to mount.
So a US-backed local politician says the US can’t leave or there will be war, while American defense officials simultaneously recognize they are occupying the very center of an impending insurgency from hell — all of which fits the textbook definition of quagmire perfectly.

The New Yorker: “The United States has built a dozen or more bases from Manbij to Al-Hasakah, including four airfields, and American-backed forces now control all of Syria east of the Euphrates, an area about the size of Croatia.”

But in September the White House announced a realignment of its official priorities in Syria, namely to act “as a bulwark against Iran’s expanding influence.” This means the continued potential and likelihood of war with Syria, Iran, and Russia in the region is ever present, per Stripes:

Syrian government troops and Iranian proxy fighters are to the south and west. They have threatened to take the area back by force, in pursuit of President Bashar Assad’s pledge to bring all of Syria under government control.

Already signs of an Iraq-style insurgency targeting US forces in eastern Syria are beginning to emerge.

In Raqqa, the largest Syrian city at the heart of US occupation and reconstruction efforts, the Stripes report finds the following:

The anger on the streets is palpable. Some residents are openly hostile to foreign visitors, which is rare in other towns and cities freed from Islamic State control in Syria and Iraq. Even those who support the presence of the U.S. military and the SDF say they are resentful that the United States and its partners in the anti-ISIS coalition that bombed the city aren’t helping to rebuild.

And many appear not to support their new rulers.

We don’t want the Americans. It’s occupation,” said one man, a tailor, who didn’t want to give his name because he feared the consequences of speaking his mind. “I don’t know why they had to use such a huge number of weapons and destroy the city. Yes, ISIS was here, but we paid the price. They have a responsibility.”

Recent reports out of the Pentagon suggests defense officials simply want to throw more money into US efforts in Syria, which are further focused on training and supplying the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (or Kurdish/YPG-dominated SDF), which threatens confrontation with Turkey as its forces continue making preparations for a planned attack on Kurdish enclaves in Syria this week.

Meanwhile, Raqqa is beginning to look more and more like Baghdad circa 2005:

Everyone says the streets are not safe now. Recent months have seen an uptick in assassinations and kidnappings, mostly targeting members of the security forces or people who work with the local council. But some critics of the authorities have been gunned down, too, and at night there are abductions and robberies.

As America settles in for yet another endless and “indefinite” occupation of a Middle East country, perhaps all that remains is for the president to land on an aircraft carrier with “Mission Accomplished” banners flying overhead?

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