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China helps Venezuela and Iran against unilateral US sanctions

China walks through the doors the US has left wide open.

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In economic warfare, like in traditional battle, one’s weapons are only as powerful as the shields which they are up against. This simple concept has not yet sunk in among the powers that be at the US Department of the Treasury. Donald Trump’s Treasury Secretary  Steven Mnuchin has been extremely zealous in passing new unilateral sanctions on the governments, individual politicians and businesses in Iran and Venezuela in particular, as well as in North Korea. But none of this is working because the US financial system and the US Dollar is no longer the only major game in town on the international markets.

Venezuela has, after many years of discussion, finally agreed to cease trading its vast oil reserves in the US Dollar.

Venezuela recently announced that it is now pricing its oil in Chinese Yuan. This comes weeks after China announced that it will allow for the trading of oil contracts in Yuan which can be easily converted to gold at the exchanges in Shanghai and Hong Kong.

The recent BRICS summit in China, put an increased emphasis on monetary independence among member states, which is of course a not so coded phrase meaning ‘let’s ditch the US Dollar’.

Already, many Asian and Eurasian countries have begun bilateral trade in local currencies and both China and Russia have expressed interest in creating new currencies for  trade throughout not only the BRICS bloc but among the wider partners of BRICS, in what is known as the BRICS + format.

Additionally, Russia and China have expressed an interest in creating a BRICS crypto-currency which if backed by the powerful member states of the bloc, could result in an inter-continental exchange model that could be Dollar free for both small retailers and for sovereign trading partners.

READ MORE: BRICS in talks to create own cryptocurrency in another blow to US Dollar

It has also been announced that the China’s firm CITIC has opened a credit line with Iran which will be worth the equivalent of $10 billion. The credit line will operate in Yuan and Euros, entirely bypassing the Dollar.

China’s investments in Iran which is an important One Belt–One Road partner for Beijing are complimented by smaller though still significant investment inflows from European companies. While the EU tends to be a rubber stamp on US policy, when it comes to Iran, much of Europe is far less cynical than the United States.

All of this has an aggregate effect of the US voluntarily pricing itself out of growing markets. The growing markets themselves have not felt the sting of sanctions due to a combination of self-sufficiency that the US tends to discard as the US is increasingly a non-self reliant nation, in addition to the overriding fact that China can now providing growing economies with all of the capital they need and can do so on terms that are generally far more generous than those which could have been offered by the US.

In spite of Donald Trump’s comical Tweets, the North Korea economy is also growing and much of this is fuelled by internal projects. To this end, North Korea’s proven oil reserves and even its ability to extract and refine this oil is far greater than the US Treasury Department seems to imply.

READ MORE: North Korea has enough oil to survive embargo

It is no wonder therefore that Russia, while expanding its economic ties with South Korea, has also expressed a desire to begin tripartite economic initiatives with both Seoul and Pyongyang. Not only does this make economic sense, but it utilises economic enrichment as a more proven way to de-escalate diplomatic and military tensions than sanctions have ever accomplished.

READ MORE: Two Koreas–One Road–The future of cooperation between North Korea, South Korea and Russia

In reality, sanctions have never accomplished anything apart from increasing international tensions with the disastrous added effect of often starving civilian populations of food, medicine and basic amenities.

By contrast, economic investment has been a proven way to create contented countries which by definition are more at peace with the wider world than those being lectured to and starved.

Now though, the American ability to starve countries is limited by the fact that China is ready, willing and able to capitalise on any door the US leaves wide open for Beijing. This is already the case with Venezuela and Iran. It is only a matter of time and a few likely Russian authored de-escalation agreements before North Korea also joins the club.

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André De Koning
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André De Koning

End of petro-dollar domination: let the good times begin!

BrendaRBrown
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BrendaRBrown

(Get Now $99 per hour with Google Easy Jobs){what’s more, carry on with a financially solid life…}
last tuesday I got Land Rover Range Rover after I been earnin $12184 this month . this is certainly my favourite job Ive ever done . I started this five months/ago and pretty much immediately started to earn minimum $75 per-hour . look at here now
!si292d:
➽➽
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Walter Dublanica
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Walter Dublanica

China’s and Russia’s influences are growing. U. S. is receding. Doesn’t anybody in Washington see this?

lromeo41891@hotmail.com
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Like happened to Rome the USA empire declined has begun.

Gonzogal
Guest
Gonzogal

They “see” it but refuse to acknowledge it….BIG difference

Shahna
Guest

Yes they do – what you think they’re getting all “bomb-some-more” about?
(It’s not because anyone other than some now decreasing patsies listens to them anymore….)

Brian De Paolo
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Brian De Paolo

Soon the rest of South America will follow…my call on that…it seems to be catching on…soon the US will have to pay Ven. in Yuan….ha….ha…ha…

Tommy Jensen
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Tommy Jensen

It will take 10 years or even more before China has got foothold enough.
In the meantime the dual citizen Wall Street turds will obstruct everything they can in anger and envy.

XRGRSF
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XRGRSF

Isn’t “10 years” what was said less than 2 years ago?

lickeyleaks
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lickeyleaks

Duran: we are relying on you to keep us posted on developments,cos sure as hell is hot we will never see anything in MSM..

Guy
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Guy

Absolutely , so we should all use the patreon button if we have not already.

scanfish
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scanfish

The US sanctions somebody and everybody ignores them, even besieged Venezuela. Is there a greater humiliation and more a stark imagery of an impotent US ’empire’? The only power it has left is military, but even that it has to think twice about the painful consequences before using it.

Keith Smith
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Keith Smith

Did the US just ignore the creation of the New Development Bank and all that goes with it?

stevek9
Guest
stevek9

There is clearly going to be an end to the total domination of international finance by the dollar, but it is going to take time. There seems to be the notion that the lazy, stupid American people decided to stop making things and rely on China. Nothing could be further from the truth. Since the dollar was the Worlds reserve currency and necessary for the purchase of oil, countries needed dollars. So, everyone is running a persistent trade surplus with the US, by manipulating local currencies. This was also favored by US oligarchs. As long a China maintains a huge… Read more »

Penrose
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Penrose

It is extremely important that the rest of the world stand firmly behind Iran against the American/Israeli/Saudi “Axis of Nogoodniks” who seek to make trouble and do harm.

john vieira
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john vieira

If anything this will get more ‘interesting’….

Putin's baby
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Putin's baby

the redneck/yankee trolls very quiet lately…. ho ho ho. I guess they didn’t get their food stamps.

Shahna
Guest

In spite of Donald Trump’s comical Tweets, the North Korea economy is also growing and much of this is fuelled by internal projects.
—————
Yes…. it seems NK isn’t the deprived, starving, millions in prison camps because they hate their govt and just want American freedom the US would have us believe……..

Can anyone help me out here – when last the US actually tell the truth about anything?

Even this is a lie – then what wasn’t? (I can’t think of a single instance since 9/11…..)

Vicente de la Fuente
Guest
Vicente de la Fuente

Hi Duran; The all World, dont want any more Wars, but EEUU, never have enough, you country only wants Wars, money and world hegemony, being the imperial country at World; Is it truth? And Vladimir Putin, only want pace; Is it strange? We all that dedicated at politics, Knows what happened a raund the World, and suffered always the Ilumínati politics truth the EEUU… Vfgcomment image

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European Court of Justice rules Britain free to revoke Brexit unilaterally

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled that Britain can reverse Article 50.

RT

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The UK is free to unilaterally revoke a notification to depart from the EU, the European Court has ruled. The judicial body said this could be done without changing the terms of London’s membership in the bloc.

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) opined in a document issued on Monday that Britain can reverse Article 50, which stipulates the way a member state leaves the bloc. The potentially important ruling comes only one day before the House of Commons votes on Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal with the EU.

“When a Member State has notified the European Council of its intention to withdraw from the European Union, as the UK has done, that Member State is free to revoke unilaterally that notification,” the court’s decision reads.

By doing so, the respective state “reflects a sovereign decision to retain its status as a Member State of the European Union.”

That said, this possibility remains in place “as long as a withdrawal agreement concluded between the EU and that Member State has not entered into force.” Another condition is: “If no such agreement has been concluded, for as long as the two-year period from the date of the notification of the intention to withdraw from the EU.”

The case was opened when a cross-party group of British politicians asked the court whether an EU member such as the UK can decide on its own to revoke the withdrawal process. It included Labour MEPs Catherine Stihler and David Martin, Scottish MPs Joanna Cherry Alyn Smith, along with Green MSPs Andy Wightman and Ross Greer.

They argued that unilateral revocation is possible and believe it could provide an opening to an alternative to Brexit, namely holding another popular vote to allow the UK to remain in the EU.

“If the UK chooses to change their minds on Brexit, then revoking Article 50 is an option and the European side should make every effort to welcome the UK back with open arms,” Smith, the SNP member, was quoted by Reuters.

However, May’s environment minister, Michael Gove, a staunch Brexit supporter, denounced the ECJ ruling, insisting the cabinet will not reverse its decision to leave. “We will leave on March 29, [2019]” he said, referring to the date set out in the UK-EU Brexit deal.

In the wake of the landmark vote on the Brexit deal, a group of senior ministers threatened to step down en masse if May does not try to negotiate a better deal in Brussels, according to the Telegraph. The ministers demanded that an alternative deal does not leave the UK trapped within the EU customs union indefinitely.

On Sunday, Will Quince resigned as parliamentary private secretary in the Ministry of Defense, saying in a Telegraph editorial that “I do not want to be explaining to my constituents why Brexit is still not over and we are still obeying EU rules in the early 2020s or beyond.”

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Seven Days of Failures for the American Empire

The American-led world system is experiencing setbacks at every turn.

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Authored by Federico Pieraccini via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


On November 25, two artillery boats of the Gyurza-M class, the Berdiansk and Nikopol, one tugboat, the Yany Kapu, as well as 24 crew members of the Ukrainian Navy, including two SBU counterintelligence officers, were detained by Russian border forces. In the incident, the Russian Federation employed Sobol-class patrol boats Izumrud and Don, as  well as two Ka-52, two Su-25 and one Su-30 aircraft.

Ukraine’s provocation follows the advice of several American think-tanks like the Atlantic Council, which have been calling for NATO involvement in the Sea of Azov for months. The area is strategically important for Moscow, which views its southern borders, above all the Sea of Azov, as a potential flash point for conflict due to the Kiev’s NATO-backed provocations.

To deter such adventurism, Moscow has deployed to the Kerch Strait and the surrounding coastal area S-400 batteries, modernized S-300s, anti-ship Bal missile systems, as well as numerous electronic-warfare systems, not to mention the Russian assets and personnel arrayed in the military districts abutting Ukraine. Such provocations, egged on by NATO and American policy makers, are meant to provide a pretext for further sanctions against Moscow and further sabotage Russia’s relations with European countries like Germany, France and Italy, as well as, quite naturally, to frustrate any personal interaction between Trump and Putin.

This last objective seems to have been achieved, with the planned meeting between Trump and Putin at the G20 in Buenos Aires being cancelled. As to the the other objectives, they seem to have failed miserably, with Berlin, Paris and Rome showing no intention of imposing additional sanctions against Russia, recognizing the Ukrainian provocation fow what it is. The intention to further isolate Moscow by the neocons, neoliberals and most of the Anglo-Saxon establishment seems to have failed, demonstrated in Buenos Aires with the meeting between the BRICS countries on the sidelines and the bilateral meetings between Putin and Merkel.

On November 30, following almost two-and-a-half months of silence, the Israeli air force bombed Syria with three waves of cruise missiles. The first and second waves were repulsed over southern Syria, and the third, composed of surface-to-surface missiles, were also downed. At the same time, a loud explosion was heard in al-Kiswah, resulting in the blackout of Israeli positions in the area.

The Israeli attack was fully repulsed, with possibly two IDF drones being downed as well. This effectiveness of Syria’s air defenses corresponds with Russia’s integration of Syria’s air defenses with its own systems, manifestly improving the Syrians’ kill ratios even without employing the new S-300 systems delivered to Damascus, let alone Russia’s own S-400s. The Pantsirs and S-200s are enough for the moment, confirming my hypothesis more than two months ago that the modernized S-300 in the hands of the Syrian army is a potentially lethal weapon even for the F-35, forbidding the Israelis from employing their F-35s.

With the failed Israeli attack testifying to effectiveness of Russian air-defense measures recently deployed to the country, even the United States is finding it difficult to operate in the country. As the Washington-based Institute for the Study of War confirms:

“Russia has finished an advanced anti-access/area denial (A2AD) network in Syria that combines its own air defense and electronic warfare systems with modernized equipment. Russia can use these capabilities to mount the long-term strategic challenge of the US and NATO in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea and the Middle East, significantly widen the geographic reach of Russia’s air defense network. Russia stands to gain a long-term strategic advantage over NATO through its new capabilities in Syria. The US and NATO must now account for the risk of a dangerous escalation in the Middle East amidst any confrontation with Russia in Eastern Europe.”

The final blow in a decidedly negative week for Washington’s ambitions came in Buenos Aires during the G20, where Xi Jinping was clearly the most awaited guest, bringing in his wake investments and opportunities for cooperation and mutual benefit, as opposed to Washington’s sanctions and tariffs for its own benefit to the detriment of others. The key event of the summit was the dinner between Xi Jinping and Donald Trump that signalled Washington’s defeat in the trade war with Beijing. Donald Trump fired the first shot of the economic war, only to succumb just 12 months later with GM closing five plants and leaving 14,000 unemployed at home as Trump tweeted about his economic achievements.

Trump was forced to suspend any new tariffs for a period of ninety days, with his Chinese counterpart intent on demonstrating how an economic war between the two greatest commercial powers had always been a pointless propagandistic exercise. Trump’s backtracking highlights Washington’s vulnerability to de-dollarization, the Achilles’ heel of US hegemony.

The American-led world system is experiencing setbacks at every turn. The struggle between the Western elites seems to be reaching a boil, with Frau Merkel ever more isolated and seeing her 14-year political dominance as chancellor petering out. Macron seems to be vying for the honor of being the most unpopular French leader in history, provoking violent protests that have lasted now for weeks, involving every sector of the population. Macron will probably be able to survive this political storm, but his political future looks dire.

The neocons/neoliberals have played one of the last cards available to them using the Ukrainian provocation, with Kiev only useful as the West’s cannon fodder against Russia. In Syria, with the conflict coming to a close and Turkey only able to look on even as it maintains a strong foothold in Idlib, Saudi Arabia, Israel and the United States are similarly unable to affect the course of the conflict. The latest Israeli aggression proved to be a humiliation for Tel Aviv and may have signalled a clear, possibly definitive warning from Moscow, Tehran and Damascus to all the forces in the region. The message seems to be that there is no longer any possibility of changing the course of the conflict in Syria, and every provocation from here on will be decisively slapped down. Idlib is going to be liberated and America’s illegal presence in the north of Syria will have to be dealt with at the right time.

Ukraine’s provocation has only strengthened Russia’s military footprint in Crimea and reinforced Russia’s sovereign control over the region. Israel’s recent failure in Syria only highlights how the various interventions of the US, the UK, France and Turkey over the years have only obliged the imposition of an almost unparalleled A2AD space that severely limits the range of options available to Damascus’s opponents.

The G20 also served to confirm Washington’s economic diminution commensurate with its military one in the face of an encroaching multipolar environment. The constant attempts to delegitimize the Trump administration by America’s elites, also declared an enemy by the European establishment, creates a picture of confusion in the West that benefits capitals like New Delhi, Moscow, Beijing and Tehran who offer instead stability, cooperation and dialogue.

As stated in previous articles, the confusion reigning amongst the Western elites only accelerates the transition to a multipolar world, progressively eroding the military and economic power of the US.

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Is Silicon Valley Morphing Into The Morality Police?

Who gets to define what words and phrases protected under the First Amendment constitute hate — a catchall word that is often ascribed to any offensive speech someone simply doesn’t like?

The Duran

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Authored by Adrian Cohen via Creators.com:


Silicon Valley used to be technology companies. But it has become the “morality police,” controlling free speech on its platforms.

What could go wrong?

In a speech Monday, Apple CEO Tim Cook said:

“Hate tries to make its headquarters in the digital world. At Apple, we believe that technology needs to have a clear point of view on this challenge. There is no time to get tied up in knots. That’s why we only have one message for those who seek to push hate, division and violence: You have no place on our platforms.”

Here’s the goliath problem:

Who gets to define what words and phrases protected under the First Amendment constitute hate — a catchall word that is often ascribed to any offensive speech someone simply doesn’t like?

Will Christians who don’t support abortion rights or having their tax dollars go toward Planned Parenthood be considered purveyors of hate for denying women the right to choose? Will millions of Americans who support legal immigration, as opposed to illegal immigration, be labeled xenophobes or racists and be banned from the digital world?

Yes and yes. How do we know? It’s already happening, as scores of conservatives nationwide are being shadow banned and/or censored on social media, YouTube, Google and beyond.

Their crime?

Running afoul of leftist Silicon Valley executives who demand conformity of thought and simply won’t tolerate any viewpoint that strays from their rigid political orthodoxy.

For context, consider that in oppressive Islamist regimes throughout the Middle East, the “morality police” take it upon themselves to judge women’s appearance, and if a woman doesn’t conform with their mandatory and highly restrictive dress code — e.g., wearing an identity-cloaking burqa — she could be publicly shamed, arrested or even stoned in the town square.

In modern-day America, powerful technology companies are actively taking the role of the de facto morality police — not when it comes to dress but when it comes to speech — affecting millions. Yes, to date, those affected are not getting stoned, but they are being blocked in the digital town square, where billions around the globe do their business, cultivate their livelihoods, connect with others and get news.

That is a powerful cudgel to levy against individuals and groups of people. Wouldn’t you say?

Right now, unelected tech billionaires living in a bubble in Palo Alto — when they’re not flying private to cushy climate summits in Davos — are deciding who gets to enjoy the freedom of speech enshrined in the U.S. Constitution and who does not based on whether they agree with people’s political views and opinions or not.

You see how dangerous this can get — real fast — as partisan liberal elites running Twitter, Facebook, Google (including YouTube), Apple and the like are now dictating to Americans what they can and cannot say online.

In communist regimes, these types of folks are known as central planners.

The election of Donald Trump was supposed to safeguard our freedoms, especially regarding speech — a foundational pillar of a democracy. It’s disappointing that hasn’t happened, as the censorship of conservative thought online has gotten so extreme and out of control many are simply logging off for good.

A failure to address this mammoth issue could cost Trump in 2020. If his supporters are blocked online — where most voters get their news — he’ll be a one-term president.

It’s time for Congress to act before the morality police use political correctness as a Trojan horse to decide our next election.

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