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Geert Wilders is not a conservative, he is a radical liberal

Geert Wilders has confounded the post-modern liberal European elite but he has not done so by being a conservative, he has done so by offering a different version of liberalism.

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For many years Geert Wilders has been an eye-catching figure in Dutch politics, but it is only this year that his Party of Freedom stands a real chance of winning big in the forthcoming Parliamentary elections.

The biggest problem with Wilders is not Wilders himself, but the total distortion of his politics by the mainstream media. He’s been called everything from a conservative to an ultra-conservative, to a far-right leader, but this is certainly not the case. Wilders is none of those things.

Geert Wilders is a liberal who believes in the liberal ideology of civic nationalism. He believes in it more thoroughly than almost any politician in Holland. To understand why Wilders represents a brand of civil nationalist liberalism, which is distinct from globalist post-modern liberalism and different from conservatism, one must examine what true conservatism is and what it looks like.

Compared with liberalism, socialism, and communism, conservatism demands previous little from the ordinary person. Beyond loyalty to the state, established religion (if there is one), military, existing social order and other state institutions, conservatism doesn’t typically care about one’s behavior so long as it is legal and not subversive.

Take Russia for example. Tsarist Russia had always been a multi-ethnic, multi-confessional state. Modern Russia is no different. In modern Russia, so long as one is loyal to the Russian state, honours one’s duties as s citizen (military service for example), respects the historic position of the Russian Orthodox Church and is literate in the Russian language, one is allowed to maintain one’s private, local and regional life as one wishes.

Chechens, for example, are allowed to celebrate Muslim holy feasts with public holidays, Armenians in Russia are allowed to speak Armenian to their family and comrades, Jewish rabbis are allowed to conduct holy days among their community and these are just a few examples of the successful multi-ethnic and multi-faith society that has grown in Russia over centuries.

With a few exceptions, it is only through conservativism that multi-cultural societies can function. This is because there are but a handful of simple loyalties one must render the state and a handful of institutions one must respect in return for one’s local and personal customs to be respected.

It is also true that multiculturalism can only work when it happens organically, again with precious few exceptions. This typically happens as a young state expands over time to incorporate a variety of peoples into a common class of subjects or citizens.

By contrast, I have little faith that the rapid immigration of a variety of alien cultures can ever truly live in peaceful coexistence with the host culture in small states. This is why multiculturalism, as typically understood in the 21st century, is a uniquely European problem.

Rather than large multi-ethnic states like Russia, the Austrian Empire or China which grew over time and incorporated many various and distinct groups of people, small states like Holland have experienced the trend of mass immigration over a period of decades, rather than centuries.

Apart from political leaders, it is no one’s fault that there are problems, not the new arrivals and not those who have ancient Dutch heritage. It is simply a fact of human nature that successive generations of politicians either ignored or had no understanding of.

Wilders is correct to point out these problems but his solution is not a conservative one. A conservative solution to the problems Wilders points out would be to require all Dutch residents to maintain a loyalty to the Dutch Monarch, laws and respect the primacy of the majoritarian religious confession. This is last part is difficult as today, those without a religious faith are more common in the Netherlands than those with one.

With Holland not being a socialist country with state atheism, there is difficulty in establishing where one’s religion relates to loyalty to the state under the conservative definition.

The solution Wilders presents is a liberal ideal called ‘civic nationalism’. This is contrasted with the statism of conservative countries like pre-1917 Russia and its modern outgrowth in today’s Russian Federation. It also contrasts with the ethnic nationalism that came to prominence in Europe during the revolutions of 1848, where the idea of nationhood was thought to be predicated on a group of individuals with the same ethnic identity.

Civic nationalism, by contrast, demands a common loyalty not only to the state but to a set of ideals/an ideology. Typically these ideals are defined in constitutional documents or other important pieces of legislation. The three most apparent examples of such a state are post-1923 Turkey, post-1905 France, and the United States.

In 1905 France passed the Laïcité laws which defined the Third French Republic as a state where secular values defined the public forum. Additionally, modern France’s civic nationalism owes much to the 1789 Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen as well as the Jules Ferry laws of the early 1880s which secularized state education.

Likewise, Ataturk’s Turkish Republic of 1923, defined Turkishness on an adherence to modern secular values as personally defined by Ataturk. It came to be known as Kemalism.

In both cases, there was opposition to this civic nationalism by conservative forces. In France, many objected to the removal of Roman Catholicism from the civic sphere and in Turkey, many saw Ataturk’s civic nationalism as an attack on a traditionally Islamic society. Indeed, President Erdogan is a leader of this backlash against Ataturk’s civic nationalism and has been resoundingly more successful than any previous anti-Kemalist leaders.

The United States is slightly different. Unlike France and Turkey whose contemporary leaders rejected prior conservative trends to forge a modern civic nationalism in old states, the US was founded as a nation of exiles (mostly self-imposed) which welcomed immigrants.

In order to make such a country functional, early US leaders invented Americanism which became the civic national ideal. For a long time, it was broadly successful, until recent decades when the post-modern liberal left introduced the European concept of multi-culturalism to the US and called it ‘identity politics’.

It must be said that for many decades the ideal of Americanism was not available to colored individuals who prior to 1865 were held no in the southern states.  Post-slavery discriminatory policies in parts of the US continued to make America’s civic nationalism incomplete until at least the 1960s.

America though achieved broad success in her civic nationalism as a nation of immigrants, partly owing to her geographical vastness. So long as one was loyal to American values, one could have a local community that remained fairly isolated from others. It is why certain regions of America to this day are more Hispanic in character, Germanic in character, West Slavic in character, Italian in character or Chinese in character.

Here one must also mention Nasser’s idea of Arab Nationalism as well as the Arabism implicit in Ba’athism. Here one has a syncretic melting pot of ancient trends in which Arab lands were united under a common sovereign, with the modern ideals of the mixed market/command economy all combined with a tolerance for many varieties of moderate Islam in a broadly secular state.

Interestingly, Syria’s relationship with its Kurdish population is based on civic nationalism. The fact that some Syrian citizens with Kurdish backgrounds now want autonomy based on ethnic nationalism, is demonstrative of the limits of civic nationalism in certain instances. Overall, though,  Ba’athist Syria has been a far better multi-cultural success story than The Netherlands or anywhere else in western Europe.

Geert Wilders wants to impose a liberal civic nationalism in the Netherlands which combines radical modern secularism with a vague adherence to the notion that western secularism is somehow an outgrowth of what he calls Judeo-Christian heritage. Historically, I find the idea that secularism has anything to do with the Old or New Testaments to be totally false, but many civic nationalist liberals share Wilders’s views.

Because of this Wilders has no time for the localized traditions of multi-cultural existence which transpired in the Russian, Ottoman, Austrian and Chinese Empires. Instead, he wants people to confirm their loyalty to his version of Dutch civic nationalism or to return to the lands where their cultures and faiths are indigenous if they are unable to do so.

In a country which in many ways is the birthplace of the classical liberalism of which civic nationalist liberalism is an outgrowth, it is little wonder that Wilders is so popular in The Netherlands. One can compare him in many ways to the late Pim Fortuyn, who was assassinated in 2002 for having similar views to Wilders.

Politicians like Wilders or Fortuyn would never fare well in conservative Russia for example as Russia’s conservative brand of historic multi-culturalism is anathema to the radical ideology inherent in Wilders’s program.

I’ll conclude by saying that this piece is neither pro nor anti-Wilders. It is simply a point of clarification in an age of fake news, fake history, fake reality and fake lexicon.

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Why did Trump recognize the Golan Heights as Israeli territory?

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 116.

Alex Christoforou

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The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris examine the reasons behind US President Trump’s sudden recognition of the Golan Heights as Israeli territory.

Following Trump’s statements as US President, acting Israeli Foreign Minister is saying that Trump will make it official and sign an executive order to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Syrian border territory on Monday.

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Via DW

Israel says White House officials are preparing an official document to codify support for Israel’s sovereignty of the Golan Heights, which will be signed by US President Donald Trump on Monday.

The signing of the decree will be witnessed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during talks with Trump at the White House, Israel’s acting foreign minister, Israel Katz (pictured), said in a Tweet.

“Tomorrow, President Trump, in the presence of PM Netanyahu, will sign a decree recognizing Israel’s sovereignty on the Golan. Israel-US ties are closer than ever,” Katz said.

Israel seized the strategic plateau from Syria in the 1967 Middle East war, subsequently annexing it in 1981 in a move never recognized by the international community.

Trump’s tweet annoys allies

Trump broke with decades of US Middle East policy when he posted a Tweet on Thursday that said it was time to accept Israel’s widely-contested claim to the border territory.

The decision has been criticized by many US allies — Germany, Britain, France and the EU have all said they still consider the Golan Heights to be “occupied” by Israel.

Syria and other states in the region said the recognition, if confirmed, would violate international law.

Netanyahu has long pushed for Washington’s endorsement, and many analysts see Trump’s comments as a campaign gift ahead of Israel’s April 9 election.

In 2017, Trump drew condemnation throughout the Middle East when he recognized the disputed city of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

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Russia Gives US Red Line On Venezuela

Political force is out. Military force is out. Respect international law and Venezuela’s sovereignty. That’s Russia’s eminently reasonable ultimatum to Washington.

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Authored by Finian Cunningham via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


At a high-level meeting in Rome this week, it seems that Russia reiterated a grave warning to the US – Moscow will not tolerate American military intervention to topple the Venezuelan government with whom it is allied.

Meanwhile, back in Washington DC, President Donald Trump was again bragging that the military option was still on the table, in his press conference with Brazilian counterpart Jair Bolsonaro. Trump is bluffing or not yet up to speed with being apprised of Russia’s red line.

The meeting in the Italian capital between US “special envoy” on Venezuelan affairs Elliot Abrams and Russia’s deputy foreign minister Sergei Ryabkov had an air of urgency in its arrangement. The US State Department announced the tête-à-tête only three days beforehand. The two officials also reportedly held their two-hour discussions in a Rome hotel, a venue indicating ad hoc arrangement.

Abrams is no ordinary diplomat. He is a regime-change specialist with a criminal record for sponsoring terrorist operations, specifically the infamous Iran-Contra affair to destabilize Nicaragua during the 1980s. His appointment by President Trump to the “Venezuela file” only underscores the serious intent in Washington for regime change in Caracas. Whether it gets away with that intent is another matter.

Moscow’s interlocutor, Sergei Ryabkov, is known to not mince his words, having earlier castigated Washington for seeking global military domination. He calls a spade a spade, and presumably a criminal a criminal.

The encounter in Rome this week was described as “frank” and “serious” – which is diplomatic code for a blazing exchange. The timing comes at a high-stakes moment, after Venezuela having been thrown into chaos last week from civilian power blackouts that many observers, including the Kremlin, blame on American cyber sabotage. The power grid outage followed a failed attempt by Washington to stage a provocation with the Venezuelan military over humanitarian aid deliveries last month from neighboring Colombia.

The fact that Washington’s efforts to overthrow the elected President Nicolas Maduro have so far floundered, might suggest that the Americans are intensifying their campaign to destabilize the country, with the objective of installing US-backed opposition figure Juan Guaido. He declared himself “acting president” in January with Washington’s imprimatur.

Given that the nationwide power blackouts seem to have failed in fomenting a revolt by the civilian population or the military against Maduro, the next option tempting Washington could be the military one.

It seems significant that Washington has recently evacuated its last remaining diplomats from the South American country. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo commented on the evacuation by saying that having US personnel on the ground “was limiting” Washington’s scope for action. Also, American Airlines reportedly cancelled all its services to Venezuela in the past week. Again, suggesting that the US was considering a military intervention, either directly with its troops or covertly by weaponizing local proxies. The latter certainly falls under Abrams’ purview.

After the Rome meeting, Ryabkov said bluntly: “We assume that Washington treats our priorities seriously, our approach and warnings.”

One of those warnings delivered by Ryabkov is understood to have been that no American military intervention in Venezuela will be tolerated by Moscow.

For his part, Abrams sounded as if he had emerged from the meeting after having been given a severe reprimand. “No, we did not come to a meeting of minds, but I think the talks were positive in the sense that both sides emerged with a better understanding of the other’s views,” he told reporters.

“A better understanding of the other’s views,” means that the American side was given a red line to back off.

The arrogance of the Americans is staggering. Abrams seems, according to US reporting, to have flown to Rome with the expectation of working out with Ryabkov a “transition” or “compromise” on who gets the “title of president” of Venezuela.

That’s what he no doubt meant when he said after the meeting “there was not a meeting of minds”, but rather he got “a better understanding” of Russia’s position.

Washington’s gambit is a replay of Syria. During the eight-year war in that country, the US continually proffered the demand of a “political transition” which at the end would see President Bashar al Assad standing down. By contrast, Russia’s unflinching position on Syria has always been that it’s not up to any external power to decide Syria’s politics. It is a sovereign matter for the Syrian people to determine independently.

Nearly three years after Russia intervened militarily in Syria to salvage the Arab country from a US-backed covert war for regime change, the American side has manifestly given up on its erstwhile imperious demands for “political transition”. The principle of Syrian sovereignty has prevailed, in large part because of Russia’s trenchant defense of its Arab ally.

Likewise, Washington, in its incorrigible arrogance, is getting another lesson from Russia – this time in its own presumed “back yard” of Latin America.

It’s not a question of Russia being inveigled by Washington’s regime-change schemers about who should be president of Venezuela and “how we can manage a transition”. Moscow has reiterated countless times that the legitimate president of Venezuela is Nicolas Maduro whom the people voted for last year by an overwhelming majority in a free and fair election – albeit boycotted by the US-orchestrated opposition.

The framework Washington is attempting to set up of choosing between their desired “interim president” and incumbent Maduro is an entirely spurious one. It is not even worthy to be discussed because it is a gross violation of Venezuela’s sovereignty. Who is Washington to even dare try to impose its false choice?

On Venezuela, Russia is having to remind the criminal American rulers – again – about international law and respect for national sovereignty, as Moscow earlier did with regard to Syria.

And in case Washington gets into a huff and tries the military option, Moscow this week told regime-change henchman Abrams that that’s a red line. If Washington has any sense of rationale left, it will know from its Syria fiasco that Russia has Venezuela’s back covered.

Political force is out. Military force is out. Respect international law and Venezuela’s sovereignty. That’s Russia’s eminently reasonable ultimatum to Washington.

Now, the desperate Americans could still try more sabotage, cyber or financial. But their options are limited, contrary to what Trump thinks.

How the days of American imperialist swagger are numbered. There was a time when it could rampage all over Latin America. Not any more, evidently. Thanks in part to Russia’s global standing and military power.

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With RussiaGate Over Where’s Hillary?

Hillary is the epitome of envy. Envy is the destructive sin of coveting someone else’s life so much they are obsessed with destroying it. It’s the sin of Cain. She envies what Trump has, the Presidency.

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Authored by Tom Luongo:


During most of the RussiaGate investigation against Donald Trump I kept saying that all roads lead to Hillary Clinton.

Anyone with three working brain cells knew this, including ‘Miss’ Maddow, whose tears of disappointment are particularly delicious.

Robert Mueller’s investigation was designed from the beginning to create something out of nothing. It did this admirably.

It was so effective it paralyzed the country for more than two years, just like Europe has been held hostage by Brexit. And all of this because, in the end, the elites I call The Davos Crowd refused to accept that the people no longer believed their lies about the benefits of their neoliberal, globalist agenda.

Hillary Clinton’s ascension to the Presidency was to be their apotheosis along with the Brexit vote. These were meant to lay to rest, once and for all time, the vaguely libertarian notion that people should rule themselves and not be ruled by philosopher kings in some distant land.

Hillary’s failure was enormous. And the RussiaGate gambit to destroy Trump served a laundry list of purposes to cover it:

  1. Undermine his legitimacy before he even takes office.
  2. Accuse him of what Hillary actually did: collude with Russians and Ukrainians to effect the outcome of the election
  3. Paralyze Trump on his foreign policy desires to scale back the Empire
  4. Give aid and comfort to hurting progressives and radicalize them further undermining our political system
  5. Polarize the electorate over the false choice of Trump’s guilt.
  6. Paralyze the Dept. of Justice and Congress so that they would not uncover the massive corruption in the intelligence agencies in the U.S. and the U.K.
  7. Isolate Trump and take away every ally or potential ally he could have by turning them against him through prosecutor overreach.

Hillary should have been thrown to the wolves after she failed. When you fail the people she failed and cost them the money she cost them, you lose more than just your funding. What this tells you is that she has so much dirt on everyone involved, once this thing started everyone went along with it lest she burn them down as well.

Burnin’ Down da House

Hillary is the epitome of envy. Envy is the destructive sin of coveting someone else’s life so much they are obsessed with destroying it. It’s the sin of Cain

She envies what Trump has, the Presidency.

And she was willing to tear it down to keep him from having it no matter how much damage it would do. She’s worse than the Joker from The Dark Knight.

Because while the Joker is unfathomable to someone with a conscience there’s little stopping us from excising him from the community completely., even though Batman refuses.

Hillary hates us for who we are and what we won’t give her. And that animus drove her to blackmail the world while putting on the face of its savior.

And that’s what makes what comes next so obvious to me. RussiaGate was never a sustainable narrative. It was ludicrous from the beginning. And now that it has ended with a whimper there are a lot of angry, confused and scared people out there.

Mueller thought all he had to do was lean on corrupt people and threaten them with everything. They would turn on Trump. He would resign in disgrace from the public outcry.

It didn’t work. In the end Paul Manafort, Michael Cohen and Roger Stone all held their ground or perjured themselves into the whole thing falling apart.

Andrew Weissman’s resignation last month was your tell there was nothing. Mueller would pursue this to the limit of his personal reputation and no further.

Just like so many other politicians.

Vote Your Pocketbook

With respect to Brexit I’ve been convinced that it would come down to reputations.

Would the British MP’s vote against their own personal best interests to do the bidding of the EU?

Would Theresa May eventually realize her historical reputation would be destroyed if she caves to Brussels and betrays Brexit in the end?

Always bet on the fecklessness of politicians. They will always act selfishly when put to the test. While leading RussiaGate, Mueller was always headed here if he couldn’t get someone to betray Trump.

And now his report is in. There are no new indictments. And by doing so he is saving his reputation for the future. And that is your biggest tell that HIllary’s blackmail is now worthless.

They don’t fear her anymore because RussiaGate outed her as the architect. Anything else she has is irrelevant in the face of trying to oust a sitting president from power.

The progressives that were convinced of Trump’s treason are bereft; their false hope stripped away like standing in front of a sandblaster. They will be raw, angry and looking for blood after they get over their denial.

Everyone else who was blackmailed into going along with this lunacy will begin cutting deals to save their skins. The outrage over this will not end. Trump will be President when he stands for re-election.

The Wolves Beckon

The Democrats do not have a chance against him as of right now. When he was caving on everything back in December it looked like he was done. That there was enough meat on the RussiaGate bones to make Nancy Pelosi brave.

Then she backed off on impeachment talk. Oops.

But the Democrats have a sincere problem. Their candidates have no solutions other than to embrace the crazy and go full Bolshevik. That is not a winning position.

Trump will kill them on ‘socialism.’

The Deep State and The Davos Crowd stand revealed and reviled.

If they don’t do something dramatic then the anger from the rest of the country will also be palpable come election time. Justice is not done simply by saying, “No evidence of collusion.”

It’s clear that RussiaGate is a failure of monumental proportions. Heads will have to roll. But who will be willing to fall on their sword at this point?

Comey? No. McCabe? No.

There is only one answer. And Obama’s people are still in place to protect him. I said last fall that “Hillary would indict herself.” And I meant it. Eventually her blackmail and drive to burn it all down led to this moment.

The circumstances are different than I expected back then, Trump didn’t win the mid-terms. But the end result was always the same. If there is no collusion, if RussiaGate is a scam, then all roads lead back to Hillary as the sacrificial lamb.

Because the bigger project, the erection of a transnational superstate, is bigger than any one person. Hillary is expendable.

Lies are expensive to maintain. The truth is cheap to defend. Think of the billions in opportunity costs associated with this. Once the costs rise above the benefits, change happens fast.

If there is any hope of salvaging the center of this country for the Democrats, the ones that voted against Hillary in 2016, then there is no reason anymore not to indict Hillary as the architect of RussiaGate.

We all know it’s the truth. So, the cheapest way out of this mess for them is to give the MAGApedes what they want, Hillary.

And hope that is enough bread and circuses to distract from the real storm ahead of us.

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