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Russia vs. U.S. – who has the stronger military?

Whilst the US vastly outspends Russia on defence, neither the US nor Russia can defeat the other in war because Russia’s asymmetrical advantages cancel out the US’s advantage in numbers. However claims Russia poses a military threat to NATO are absurd.

Angela Borozna

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It is unquestionable that the United States’ military power is dominant, but just as an illustration, consider these numbers:

Military Spending

Russia’s military budget at $67 billion is tiny, compared to the United States’ $594 billion (bigger than the military budget of the next nine countries with largest military budgets combined).

T-15 Heavy Infantry Fighting Vehicle

Active Military Personnel

The United States has 1,492,200 military personnel vs. Russia’s 845,000.

Military Bases

There are around 800 U.S. bases in 80 foreign countries, with 174 U.S. “base sites” in Germany alone.  As of 2016, Russia has 12 military bases outside of its border: 10 of them on the territory of the former Soviet Union, in close proximity to Russia’s borders, two others in Syria and Vietnam

russia-vs-nato_07

Map source: businessinsider.com

Nuclear Weapons

Both sides have more than enough to completely destroy each other several times. According to the Arms Control Association, Russia has 1,735 strategic warheads deployed on 521 ICBMs, SLBMs, and strategic bombers, and 2,700 non-deployed strategic and deployed and non-deployed tactical warheads, and 3,200 additional warheads are awaiting dismantlement.

The United States has 1,481 strategic nuclear warheads deployed on 741 ICBMs, SLBMs, and strategic bombers, and 2,570 non-deployed strategic warheads, and roughly 500 deployed and non-deployed tactical warheads, and approximately 2,500 warheads retired and awaiting dismantlement.

Irrelevance of Hard Numbers in “Asymmetric Response”

Whilst the overall defence numbers look favourable to the United States, the Russians can compensate for their numerical inferiority by deploying high-end systems for which the US has no real equivalent or good countermeasures.

Since 2012, when the U.S. announced its plans to proceed with building the Missile Defence System in Eastern Europe, Russia has warned of its asymmetric response to US threats:

“Russia will strengthen its air defence capabilities, including air defence systems around Moscow and in strategic forces, build new tracking stations in addition to three existing ones, and create such systems for which missile defence will not be an obstacle”.

Four years later, in summer 2016, Russian representative at NATO, Alexander Grushko reiterated: “Certainly, we’ll respond totally asymmetrically,” and that this response “would not be extremely expensive, but also highly effective.”

Russia’s Major General Igor Konashenkov, the Chief of the Directorate of Media service and Information of the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation, responded to the U.S. State Department’s threats that “Russians will be going home in body bags,” and that Russian cities will become targets of terrorist attacks:

“I would say that we know exactly where and how many “unofficial specialists” operate in Syria and in the Aleppo province and we know that they are involved in the operational planning and that they supervise the operations of the militants. Of course, one can continue to insist that they are unsuccessfully involved in trying to separate the al-Nusra terrorists from the “opposition” forces. But if somebody tries to implement these threats, it is by no means certain that these militants will have no time to get the hell out of there.”

Konashenkov warned Washington against a possible attack against Russian military personnel in Syria, as the “radius of the new Russian systems implemented in Syria might surprise our colleagues.”

Hard numbers might be irrelevant when it comes to threats of cyber-attacks.

In retaliation for alleged Russian interference in the American presidential election, “the CIA has been asked to deliver options to the White House for a wide-ranging ‘clandestine’ cyber operation designed to harass and ‘embarrass’ the Kremlin leadership,” according to NBC.

Russian president Putin responded that cyber-attacks or other types of interference in other countries’ internal affairs were intolerable and ridiculed the accusations of Russia’s meddling in the U.S. presidential elections as a distraction from the multitude of unresolved domestic problems  “pointing instead to supposed Russian hackers, spies, agents of influence and so forth. Does anyone seriously imagine that Russia can somehow influence the American people’s choice? America is not some kind of ‘banana republic’, after all, but is a great power. Do correct me if I am wrong.”

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Wesa F.
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Wesa F.

To me it’s not the budget that you spend but the value you get for that budget. 30 yrs ago I was involved in the purchase of Russian made machinery, and yes it was pretty rough gear,now this was my first impression but when you thought about it for what it had to do and the conditions it had to work in well it was the machine for the job,and the cost was spot on. To buy a machine equivalent would cost you 3 times as much and wouldn’t do any more work and still wore out just the same.… Read more »

Dan Kuhn
Guest
Dan Kuhn

For me,, the Russians have it spot on. They are working within their own country and spending money ion real time defence. Everytime NATO ( US ) does something they come up with the answer. It is a cost effective way to keep a supposedly superior military power at bay. They are not blowing trilllions of dollars on useless military equipment like the F35 and F22. They also use their nuclear deterrent correctly stating that if attacked they will resort to it´s use. That means that if Russia is attacked the Continental US will either cease to exist or it… Read more »

JT
Guest
JT

Notwithstanding the above – Russia is like he ugly girl at the prom that no one wants to date. Trust me, no one is interested in invading Russia, occupying or having anything to do with that dump of a country.

mikeemac
Guest
mikeemac

Dan. Its exactly that sort of attitude thats going to bring America to its knees within the next decade

Vera Gottlieb
Guest
Vera Gottlieb

Has anyone bothered to try and find out what China would do??? I doubt that, in case of major conflict, China would just stand by and do nothing. And my guess would be, it would side with Russia.

enviropal99
Guest
enviropal99

The US could stop buying anything Chinese and China would collapse. They can’t even feed themselves!

Vera Gottlieb
Guest
Vera Gottlieb

Your notions are rather antiquated…you should update. It is the West that has made Chine what it is today – cheap labour to produce all kinds of products, to be sold in the West at huge profits from which companies such as Wal-Mart, etc. profit. See pictures of China lately? A very modern infrastructure, compared with the US’, that is falling apart no matter where one looks. As for feeding themselves…haven’t seen a hungry, skinny Chinese yet.

Tyrantsbleedtoo
Guest
Tyrantsbleedtoo

We can fall apart for another century and still blow them back to the Golden Horde.

Vera Gottlieb
Guest
Vera Gottlieb

Another typical American…settle problems with violence. Way to go…keep going.

Tyrantsbleedtoo
Guest
Tyrantsbleedtoo

Right. And the perfect, all-loving Muscovites have never engaged in violence. Such delusion.

Vera Gottlieb
Guest
Vera Gottlieb

How ignorant you are!!! Compare all the daily shootings in the US with hardly any shootings in Russia. You poor soul…brainwashed by a MSM that doesn’t know one end from the other.

Tyrantsbleedtoo
Guest
Tyrantsbleedtoo

I see you did not refute my statement, this proving you truly believe Russia is perfect. All nations are corrupt, to an extent. All people are flawed and born wicked. Russia is not heaven on earth. Putin is not Messiah. Wake up.

Vera Gottlieb
Guest
Vera Gottlieb

Correct you are…no one country, no one person (and no one religion) is perfect…so why then does the US keep bragging, to the point of nausea, how “perfect’ it is?

Robert Matlock
Guest
Robert Matlock

No one in the US except the elderly brags about how perfect this country is. Don’t know what kind of media you ingest, but the US is at an all time low for nationalism. As for economical dependency, the US relies on China, and China heavily relies on the US. That isn’t an argument to be had, it’s just fact, a fact stated and agreed on by both countries. Do your research and learn some basic economics. As for violence, Russia has more murders than the US every year, despite the fact that the US has over twice it’s population.… Read more »

Vera Gottlieb
Guest
Vera Gottlieb

Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, fire bombing of Tokyo, Chile, Panama, Grenada, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, Somalia…and not forgetting the countless despots and dictators the US has put in government and support/ed. Stop excusing your countries nefarious behaviour.

Le Ruscino
Guest
Le Ruscino

NATO is US & US is NATO – Anyone who doesn’t get that needs to go back to school. Comparing Russian Military Tech with US Military is very difficult but from what we do know in a conflict today in 2016 we go know that the US has an awful lot of knives for a gun fight with Russia that will be won electronically in ways that US knows very well which is why its blustering & will do nothing when push comes to shove. I personally remember UK military laughter when they learned the Russians had removed transistors from… Read more »

MH
Guest
MH

The point is, who’s going to be crazy enough to start it? Get a map of the world, pour gasoline on it and set it on fire. That’ll be the strategy and history of WWIII. That’s who has the “stronger” military.

Robert Melvin
Guest
Robert Melvin

Killary and her neocon zionist asshat buddies seem think its “on the table”!

MH
Guest
MH

I think they’re hoping for a group inside Russia to neutralize the military and the leadership by convincing them that any military action is unthinkable and unwinnable. So that when they begin or threaten a war Russia will be collapsed from within like the SU. And when Russia is broken up and it’s memory erased; all of eastern Europe will meet the same fate and the goal of 70 years ago will be realized. It seems insane, but Russia has to make them understand that if Russia does go down – everyone goes down. No deals, just the match will… Read more »

Robert Melvin
Guest
Robert Melvin

Could be right… “Just hoping”! But, I don’t think they’re that smart. The neocons zionist that control US gov and media think a nuclear war is winnable.. They ARE actually that fucked up! They’ve said as much and are in the process of trying to convince the rest in the gov, our allies, and the amurikan public, that thats the rout we may need to explore. Jew neocon, (ex CIA) mike (I’m a dweeb) morrel said we need to “bomb Assad, bomb Iran, and bomb Russia” to send a message to Putin that “we’re not gonna stand for this”.. Knowing… Read more »

enviropal99
Guest
enviropal99

The US (Truman) was stupid! We could have destroyed Russia in early 1949 before they perfected their A-bomb and we had more than enough to wipe out every major city in Russia along with all their armies along the borders of Western Europe.

Tecumseh1768
Guest
Tecumseh1768

Fortunately Russia caught on to the NGOs in time.

MH
Guest
MH

Yes , the leadership understood the threat and defused it, but I was also thinking of home-grown threats , such as the liberals, those with stars still in their eyes even after what happened during the 90’s and who want to grow up and be just like the Americans. Maybe elements in things like the Valdai group with American contacts who lose sight of other people’s true motivations in urging co-operation with America or who are being made to doubt Russia’s ability to fight and win wars, conventional or nuclear. They used to be called “defeatists” or 5th column. I… Read more »

Bill Rood
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Bill Rood

Notwithstanding the references to an “asymmetric” response, this article does not sufficiently take into account the huge edge Russia holds in the quality of its weapons, from the Kalashnikov all the way to electronic warfare. The Soviet system of competing “design bureaus” always produced weapons every bit as good as those in the west. T-34s and YAK fighters were superior to most German or Western weapons, and that tradition seems to have been restored since the dismal Yeltsin years. I recall seeing one or two isolated reports in the late summer of 2013 that a missile launched somewhere in the… Read more »

Robert Melvin
Guest
Robert Melvin

Not sure about the yaks superiority tho.. Especially at the outset of the war.
Russians also had the digs on who ‘really’ used the nerve gas. Which the UN later seemed to support. And you’re correct, (((they))) dam sure didn’t care about the amurkican public’s push back to another conflict.. Def the other factors….

Doug Retter
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Doug Retter

Bill, you’re just plain stupid. Still trolling for Putin or did you ever get a real job?

Bill Rood
Guest
Bill Rood

Just now getting around to this empty ad hominem after 5 mos? You’d better get on the stick or your CIA handlers will take note of your inefficiency and stop funding you.

Doug Retter
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Doug Retter

…ok…still trolling for Putin!

Ernest Langa
Guest
Ernest Langa

Bill Rood, I like your attitude in having a mutual respect dialogue. Let them vormit and release diarrhea. When a person like Dough Retter and Ajac09 fail to produce meaningful​ information they opt for emotional and eventually playing man instead of showing skill on the ball. Please Bill keep that IQ up.

Robert Miller
Guest
Robert Miller

Doug, he’s got yellowcake! Yellowcake and aluminum tubes! You’ve got to watch out for aluminum tubes. And he’s hiding in a cave in Afghanistan, that’s why we have stayed in Afghanistan for sixteen years, never mind the 1000% increase in opium production. And his emissaries met with al Qaeda in Vienna. And they attacked our navy in the Gulf of Tonkin! We must rescue our medical students in Grenada.

Doug, did you know that Nicaragua is just a leisurely two-day drive to the Rio Grande? The Sandinistas could be attacking Austin by Monday!

Fabrizio Brader
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Fabrizio Brader

Very good analysis, I agree with it.

Bill Rood
Guest
Bill Rood

Well, I certainly hope I was correct, because the attack today on Syria was a test of the Russian technology. I believe the US military was trying to get Russia to “light up” its S-400s. I’m seeing allegations on syrianperspective.com that the S-400s were not used, yet reports that only 23/59 Tomahawks hit their targets. Tomahawks don’t just malfunction, so some AA defense must have been used. I hope they’re correct at syrianperspective.com that it was an inferior technology, in which case it was amazingly effective. I hope that’s what really happened, in which case it should be a sobering… Read more »

AdeliousPat
Guest
AdeliousPat

Russia always produced interesting technology in the Cold War, but it in nearly every regard the Soviet Union was always a step behind. Sure it beat the US into space, but it’s manned moon program failed. The USSR also failed in the later years with the admittedly very cool Buran program. The aircraft from the USSR have always been “a day late and a dollar short.” The MIG 25 and later 31 were fantastically fast, but could only run at those speeds for minutes with the goal of intercepting the SR-71 which was actually most efficient at those speeds (mach… Read more »

Mark J McGinty
Guest
Mark J McGinty

You seem to be forgetting or ignoring the incident in the Black Sea, in 2014, the USS Donald Cook, Russian jamming technology completely shut down AEGIS, rendering the ship helpless and at their mercy. You also make no mention of the F-35, which, even when it does not catch fire on the runway, is easily out-maneuvered by 20 year old Russian fighters, and is generally a laughing stock that makes military pilots cringe when ordered to fly. Yes we out-spend Russia militarily by an order of magnitude, but how much of that do we piss away? The assumption that the… Read more »

ajac09
Guest
ajac09

Stop drinking the Putin Kool aide. Yaks were no where near as good as anything the US deployed in ww2 and the t-34 was beat by shermans in the Korean war…Russia has ALWAYS been behind the US in quality of weaponry. If nukes are off the table US could easily invade and destroy the Russia military. US has much more combat experience then Russia. battle tested weapons and is in a better position then Russia to attempt an invasion. US navy would decimate the Russia navy in its first encounter. US airforce larger and better would destroy the Russian air… Read more »

Bill Rood
Guest
Bill Rood

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yakovlev_Yak-3 says different: Marcel Albert, World War II French ace, who flew the Yak in USSR with the Normandie-Niémen Group, considered it a superior aircraft when compared to the P-51D Mustang and the Supermarine Spitfire.[ So, yeah maybe I was wrong. I only said it was better than “most.” It sounds like Albert thought Yak-3 was better than the best. Be that as it may, to what do you attribute that only 23/59 Tomahawks hit their mark on April 6? Did 39 of them all decide to malfunction at the same time? Quite a coincidence, wasn’t it? I didn’t speculate… Read more »

ajac09
Guest
ajac09

ONE Person thinks so and you go with it? Putin kool aide FTW. and you used wikipedia as a reference that kills your argument immediately.

Sean Glennie
Guest
Sean Glennie

Hi ajac09, please stop being this kind of person: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-07-02/government-trolls-are-using-psychology-based-influence-techniques-youtube-facebook-a [Have you ever come across someone on the Internet that you suspected was a paid government troll? Well, there is a very good chance that you were not imagining things. Thanks to Edward Snowden, we now have solid proof that paid government trolls are using “psychology-based influence techniques” on social media websites such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. Documents leaked by Snowden also reveal that government agents have been conducting denial-of-service attacks, flooding social media websites with thinly veiled propaganda and have been purposely attempting to warp public discourse online.… Read more »

Sean Glennie
Guest
Sean Glennie

In other words, the US and other Western globalist vassal states do exactly everything what they accuse Russia and a few other countries of doing.

Sean Glennie
Guest
Sean Glennie

These plutocrats and their puppets in politics, NGOs, and the mainstream media deserve to be shot, but only after being exposed to the world for the immoral freaks they are.

ajac09
Guest
ajac09

Why dont you stop kissing Putins ass and come back to reality. You think trolling because you disagree when your just angry that your wrong. History proves me right and continues to.

Sean Glennie
Guest
Sean Glennie

Reliable open source material contradicts your claims, apparently you should read up more history. Also try reading up on the most current weapons both in use and in development around the world and compare them to their US counterparts.

RussG
Guest
RussG

The map needs some corrections. Crimea is part of Russia, so please delete outside-Russia base #3 and re-color Crimea to light pink like the rest of Russia.

M Masek
Guest
M Masek

Angela Borozna, correct me if I’m wrong, I thought Crimea was Russian territory. I didn’t know it was a separatist region. So a Russian military base in Crimea would reflect as in Russia.

Mike from Ramsbottom
Guest
Mike from Ramsbottom

On that map — You can take Crimea out of ‘Russia supported separatist regions’. Crimea is Russia.

murtazabhai008@gmail.com
Guest

Putin wants peace in syria but western countries want pieces by supporting Saudis Wahabis. Wahabis are the worst human on earth. World’s largest terrorism are funded by Saudi Kuwait and all wahabi dominated countries.

Tecumseh1768
Guest
Tecumseh1768

Yes the Saudis are terrorist scum but by God they are OUR terrorist scum.

enviropal99
Guest
enviropal99

Russia wants the destruction of the rebels in Syria that are fighting the dictator Assad. Russia doesn’t believe in human rights. They just want the oil and the military bases.

murtazabhai008@gmail.com
Guest

Putin is a hero. Russia is defeating terrorism while America supports terrorism by helping Saudis.

Mark J McGinty
Guest
Mark J McGinty

This comparison fails to consider that Russia has technical/electronic superiority, the 2014 incident involving the USS Donald Cook in the Black Sea proved that Russia has it, hands down. The US may spend 10x more, but it wastes a metric shit ton of that budget, clearly. This superiority skews the numbers by a very substantial factor.

AleonisSprak
Guest
AleonisSprak

Russia has technical/electronic superiority? This is the opposite of what is true. This is the one thing Russia lacks.

America holds private contracts with the companies that are the unquestioned world leaders in electronics/chip design. Raytheon and Honeywell are essentially components of the US defense department. Intel and IBM are direct suppliers of the US government. These companies design the chips that everything else runs off of. Russia has no capacity to approximate US tech. Its a matter of fact and not debate.

Mark J McGinty
Guest
Mark J McGinty

Are you familiar with the USS Donald Cook incident, in even the least way? If you were you would know that AEGIS, the ostensible cream of the US technology crop, was shut down and rendered useless by Russian jamming technology, the ONLY reason that ship isn’t a living reef at the bottom of the Black Sea, is that Russia chose not to sink it. The US military industrial complex is the world leader in extracting wealth from the middle class, look at the F-35, poster child for the phrase “cut your losses” and then talk about world leadership. The only… Read more »

Robert Matlock
Guest
Robert Matlock

The ability to jam does not signify technological dominance, you’re essentially mixing apples and oranges with your argument. If you do not fully understand the technology, do not comment on the matter. American Exceptionalism isn’t a tag for someone stating proven facts, do your research.

Mark J McGinty
Guest
Mark J McGinty

This is a clip from an article on vetranstoday.com: “Russia sent an unarmed bomber Su- 24 to fly around the U.S. destroyer. However, experts say that this plane was equipped with the latest Russian electronic warfare complex. According to this version, “Aegis” spotted from afar the approaching aircraft, and sounded alarm. Everything went normally, American radars calculated the speed of the approaching target. And suddenly all the screens went blank. “Aegis” was not working any more, and the rockets could not get target information. Meanwhile, Su-24 flew over the deck of the destroyer, did battle turn and simulated missile attack… Read more »

Mark J McGinty
Guest
Mark J McGinty

The ability to shut down our targeting/firing systems and force onboard computer systems into a cyclic rebooting condition absolutely shows superiority, do you even know what you’re saying? WTF is wrong with you? When you can render your enemy defenseless — yes, a ship that’s unable to deploy ANY weapons system, besides officers’ side-arms, is by definition, defenseless — then you win. I worked as a programmer for a DoD contractor, developing mission planning software, but this discussion isn’t really all that technical, and you obviously either don’t get it or are in denial. Your inability to be objective turns… Read more »

Doug Retter
Guest
Doug Retter

Have any of you ever been in a Russian tank and then in an American tank? Clearly not!!! The US fields about 8800 Abrams tanks; Russia claims to have over 15,000. The difference is, Russia’s failed infrastructure requires active service tanks to be stripped of parts to keep the rest running. In combat, there will be few spare parts. It is estimated that as much as 30% of Russia’s tanks are not in service as a result….however, would not matter, if they were. Russian tanks are vastly inferior; American crews are vastly over-trained. Most American tank crews have vastly more… Read more »

mikeemac
Guest
mikeemac

The US would be operating far from its resources and extremely over stretched supply lines. Their carrier groups would be toast in weeks due to their total dependance on electronics and satellites. This effectively ends any cover that your amazing tanks would have. The US has made far to many enemies, Russia, most of the middle east, China and even support in Europe is waning. It’s the beginning of the end. Look at the fall of empires in history and it always begins with a over inflated ego, a delusional idea of self importance, too many enemies, 0 ability to… Read more »

enviropal99
Guest
enviropal99

That was the sentiment in 1941. Japan expected the US to surrender or at least just let Japan take over China. Look how that turned out.

Doug Retter
Guest
Doug Retter

…says Putin’s retarded, trained chimp. Bring it, silly boy!

Doug Retter
Guest
Doug Retter

With stupid people on the wrong side of the argument, shouldn’t be too hard.

JT
Guest
JT

I really don’t know why Russia is so paranoid about being invaded – Russia is like he ugly girl at the prom that no one wants to date. Trust me, no one is interested in invading or occupying that dump of a country.

Tierney Simmons
Guest
Tierney Simmons

I know some one in the white house has to know America is Babylon. ‘..’And if a war starts America will lose. Its already written. In the end of the bible the Russian bear is there. But the egal is not. Even the dragon ”The egal is America. Dragon china. Bear Russia. But the people will cry out oh great Babylon the great has fallen.’.. ‘So trump sends 56 cruse missils to Syria. Russia has now cut sky comunication increasing an accident in the sky’s. Why the runway is back up back running already! In less then 24hours .. Now… Read more »

enviropal99
Guest
enviropal99

If we want to destroy Russia all we need to do is drill all of the oil wells we can and become completely self sufficient in oil. The excess capacity worldwide caused by the additional US production will reduce the price of oil below $25.00 per barrel. Russia depends upon oil revenues to survive. With $25.00 oil Russia will make zero money and will have no money to spend on military equipment or even for importing food.

Latest

The mainstream media does not want you to think [Video]

It is difficult to tell if recent reports like this really represent a realization for the media, but this interview rings true nonetheless.

Seraphim Hanisch

Published

on

Several recent stories on Fox, Breitbart, and here on The Duran all address the increasingly obvious bias of the mainstream media with regard to news reporting. We discussed on The Duran how Chris Wallace of Fox News refused to hear details from White House Senior Policy Adviser Stephen Miller about why the recently declared National Emergency is in fact legitimate.

This piece revealed that the media is very actively trying to control and direct what information they want the public to hear, rather than truly reporting the news, or interviewing people to get their takes on things, and to perhaps fully interview all sides in a controversy and then let the American public decide for themselves what to think.

This used to exist in more gentlemanly debate programs in some fashion, such as with the TV debate program Point Counterpoint, but now, the bias of the reporter or of the network is the primary operator in determining the outcome of the interview, rather than the information that is available about the story.

This has helped create a news and information culture in the United States that is truly insane. As examples, consider these paraphrased headlines, all occurring within the last few years:

All of these are probably familiar to most readers. Many of them are still repeated and acted on as if they were real. But the articles we linked to behind most of these ledes are examples of the disproof, usually 100% disproof, of these. They are hoaxes, or reports built on circumstantial evidence without any proof, or in the worst cases, pure slander and propaganda.

One reporter for CBS news, 60 Minutes anchor Lara Logan, discussed this in an interview with retired Navy SEAL Mike Ritland, for his own podcast program, which was picked up by the MediaIte website. The video of her interview is quite lengthy but starting at about 02:14:00 there is a particular segment that the MediaIte writers called to attention. We include this segment in the video.

PARENTAL ADVISORY: The video is unrestricted in regards to language and there is some profanity. Parents, please listen first before letting your children watch this video.

A major point Mrs Logan makes here is that 85% of the employ of the mainstream media in the USA consist of registered Democrats. She also speaks forcefully against the use of stereotypes, and suggests the best place to start is actual facts. This means that most journalists are coming into this work with a bias, which is not set aside for the sake of the facts of the story.

Probably the most key point comes at 2:18:20 in the video is how Lara Logan is taught the way to discern whether or not someone in journalism is lying to you:

“Someone very smart told me a long time ago, that, ‘how do you know you are being lied to?’, ‘how do you know you are being manipulated?’, ‘how do you know there is something not right with the coverage?’, when they simplify it all, and there is no gray. There is no gray. It’s all one way.

“Well, life isn’t like that. If it doesn’t match real life, it is probably not. Something is wrong.”

Lara Logan then pointed out the comparison of the mainstream media’s constant negative coverage of President Trump against the reality of his work, that, regardless of one’s own personal bias, it does not match that everything the President does is bad. She also highlighted the point that one’s personal views should not come into how to report a news story.

Yet in our days, it not only comes into the story, it drives the narrative for which the story just becomes an example of “proof” that the narrative is “true.” 

Tucker Carlson talked vividly about the same characteristic on his program Monday night on Fox News.

He points out that the 3,000 yearly shooting in Chicago get very little news coverage, but that is because these are not as “useful” as the Jussie Smollett story is.

This is an example of using an event or a person’s actions to satisfy a politically biased propaganda narrative, rather than report the news.

This is not occasional, as the list of news headlines given above show. This is a constant practice across most of the mainstream media. Probably no one who gives interviews on the major networks is exempt, for even Mr. Carlson often resorts to cornering tactics when interviewing liberals in an apparent attempt to make the liberal look ridiculous and the point of view he espouses to look vindicated through that ridiculousness.

While this is emotionally invigorating for the Carlson fan who wants to see him “eviscerate” the liberal, it is very bad journalism. In fact, it is not journalism at all; it is sensationalism in a nasty sense.

It also insults the viewer, perhaps without them knowing it, because such reporting is the same as telling the viewer “WE ARE IN CONTROL!” and that the viewer must simply go along with the narrative given.

It is very bad when what should be information reporting, policy discussion, or debate becomes infected with this. Ideas, the product of (hopefully) rational and discursive reasoning, are pushed aside by pure emotion and mass sensationalism. Put metaphorically, it is the new look of bread and circuses, keeping the masses entertained while anything else might be happening.

Sometimes the motive for this is not so sinister. After all, we have a 24 hour news cycle now. In the 1970’s we didn’t. And in those times, the calibre of news reported was much higher. Reporting was far more careful. The Pulitzer Prize winners  Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein did their incredible exposé on the doings of President Richard Nixon under the directorship of the Washington Post editor, which demanded triple-checking of everything, making sure that all information was factual, accurate and genuine. While the story was indeed sensational, more importantly, it was true.

Now we have a lot of sensation, but very little to zero truth. As an example, every one of the ledes linked above is not proven to be true, in fact the truth in many of these stories is the opposite of what the headline says.

This would not be much of a problem if the media lies were not absorbed and reacted on by their readers, listeners and viewers. But the fact is that there are a significant number of consumers of mainstream media news that do react to it. The Covington High School incident showed this in perhaps the most frightening way, with open calls for violence against teenagers and high school students, requested by professionals, people that are supposed to be adults, such as Kathy Griffin, Reza Aslan, and GQ writer Nathaniel Friedman, who called for these kids to be “doxxed”, which as we reported, is an action that can be deadly.

We are in the times where the love of many has gone cold, and all is about expediency and selfishness. While there are a few outlets and a few journalists that still retain interest in recording and disseminating the truth, the reality is that most of what is out there is tainted by the drive for attention and sensationalism.

The media that engages in such behavior is actually hurting people, rather than informing and helping them.

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Russia and China Are Containing the US to Reshape the World Order

China and Russia are leading this historic transition while being careful to avoid direct war with the United States.

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Authored by Federico Pieraccini via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


Fortunately the world today is very different from that of 2003, Washington’s decrees are less effective in determining the world order. But in spite of this new, more balanced division of power amongst several powers, Washington appears ever more aggressive towards allies and enemies alike, regardless of which US president is in office.

China and Russia are leading this historic transition while being careful to avoid direct war with the United States. To succeed in this endeavor, they use a hybrid strategy involving diplomacy, military support to allies, and economic guarantees to countries under Washington’s attack.

The United States considers the whole planet its playground. Its military and political doctrine is based on the concept of liberal hegemony, as explained by political scientist John Mearsheimer. This imperialistic attitude has, over time, created a coordinated and semi-official front of countries resisting this liberal hegemony. The recent events in Venezuela indicate why cooperation between these counter-hegemonic countries is essential to accelerating the transition from a unipolar to a multipolar reality, where the damage US imperialism is able to bring about is diminished.

Moscow and Beijing lead the world by hindering Washington

Moscow and Beijing, following a complex relationship from the period of the Cold War, have managed to achieve a confluence of interests in their grand objectives over the coming years. The understanding they have come to mainly revolves around stemming the chaos Washington has unleashed on the world.

The guiding principle of the US military-intelligence apparatus is that if a country cannot be controlled (such as Iraq following the 2003 invasion), then it has to be destroyed in order to save it from falling into Sino-Russian camp. This is what the United States has attempted to do with Syria, and what it intends to do with Venezuela.

The Middle East is an area that has drawn global attention for some time, with Washington clearly interested in supporting its Israeli and Saudi allies in the region. Israel pursues a foreign policy aimed at dismantling the Iranian and Syrian states. Saudi Arabia also pursues a similar strategy against Iran and Syria, in addition to fueling a rift within the Arab world stemming from its differences with Qatar.

The foreign-policy decisions of Israel and Saudi Arabia have been supported by Washington for decades, for two very specific reasons: the influence of the Israel lobby in the US, and the need to ensure that Saudi Arabia and the OPEC countries sell oil in US dollars, thereby preserving the role of the US dollar as the global reserve currency.

The US dollar remaining the global reserve currency is essential to Washington being able to maintain her role as superpower and is crucial to her hybrid strategy against her geopolitical rivals. Sanctions are a good example of how Washington uses the global financial and economic system, based on the US dollar, as a weapon against her enemies. In the case of the Middle East, Iran is the main target, with sanctions aimed at preventing the Islamic Republic from trading on foreign banking systems. Washington has vetoed Syria’s ability to procure contracts to reconstruct the country, with European companies being threatened that they risk no longer being able to work in the US if they accept to work in Syria.

Beijing and Moscow have a clear diplomatic strategy, jointly rejecting countless motions advanced by the US, the UK and France at the United Nations Security Council condemning Iran and Syria. On the military front, Russia continues her presence in Syria. China’s economic efforts, although not yet fully visible in Syria and Iran, will be the essential part of reviving these countries destroyed by years of war inflicted by Washington and her allies.

China and Russia’s containment strategy in the Middle East aims to defend Syria and Iran diplomatically using international law, something that is continuously ridden roughshod over by the US and her regional allies. Russia’s military action has been crucial to curbing and defeating the inhuman aggression launched against Syria, and has also drawn a red line that Israel cannot cross in its efforts to attack Iran. The defeat of the United States in Syria has created an encouraging precedent for the rest of the world. Washington has been forced to abandon the original plans to getting rid of Assad.

Syria will be remembered in the future as the beginning of the multipolar revolution, whereby the United States was contained in military-conventional terms as a result of the coordinated actions of China and Russia.

China’s economic contribution provides for such urgent needs as the supply of food, government loans, and medicines to countries under Washington’s economic siege. So long as the global financial system remains anchored to the US dollar, Washington remains able to cause a lot of pain to countries refusing to obey her diktats.

The effectiveness of economic sanctions varies from country to country. The Russian Federation used sanctions imposed by the West as an impetus to obtain a complete, or almost autonomous, refinancing of its main foreign debt, as well as to producing at home what had previously been imported from abroad. Russia’s long-term strategy is to open up to China and other Asian countries as the main market for imports and exports, reducing contacts with the Europeans if countries like France and Germany continue in their hostility towards the Russian Federation.

Thanks to Chinese investments, together with planned projects like the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), the hegemony of the US dollar is under threat in the medium to long term. The Chinese initiatives in the fields of infrastructure, energy, rail, road and technology connections among dozens of countries, added to the continuing need for oil, will drive ever-increasing consumption of oil in Asia that is currently paid for in US dollars.

Moscow is in a privileged position, enjoying good relations with all the major producers of oil and LNG, from Qatar to Saudi Arabia, and including Iran, Venezuela and Nigeria. Moscow’s good relations with Riyadh are ultimately aimed at the creation of an OPEC+ arrangement that includes Russia.

Particular attention should be given to the situation in Venezuela, one of the most important countries in OPEC. Riyadh sent to Caracas in recent weeks a tanker carrying two million barrels of oil, and Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) has taken a neutral stance regarding Venezuela, maintaining a predictable balance between Washington and Caracas.

These joint initiatives, led by Moscow and Beijing, are aimed at reducing the use of the US dollar by countries that are involved in the BRI and adhere to the OPEC+ format. This diversification away from the US dollar, to cover financial transactions between countries involving investment, oil and LNG, will see the progressive abandonment of the US dollar as a result of agreements that increasingly do away with the dollar.

For the moment, Riyadh does not seem intent on losing US military protection. But recent events to do with Khashoggi, as well as the failure to list Saudi Aramco on the New York or London stock exchanges, have severely undermined the confidence of the Saudi royal family in her American allies. The meeting between Putin and MBS at the G20 in Bueno Aires seemed to signal a clear message to Washington as well as the future of the US dollar.

Moscow and Beijing’s military, economic and diplomatic efforts see their culmination in the Astana process. Turkey is one of the principle countries behind the aggression against Syria; but Moscow and Tehran have incorporated it into the process of containing the regional chaos spawned by the United States. Thanks to timely agreements in Syria known as “deconfliction zones”, Damascus has advanced, city by city, to clear the country of the terrorists financed by Washington, Riyadh and Ankara.

Qatar, an economic guarantor of Turkey, which in return offers military protection to Doha, is also moving away from the Israeli-Saudi camp as a result of Sino-Russian efforts in the energy, diplomatic and military fields. Doha’s move has also been because of the fratricidal diplomatic-economic war launched by Riyadh against Doha, being yet another example of the contagious effect of the chaos created by Washington, especially on US allies Israel and Saudi Arabia.

Washington loses military influence in the region thanks to the presence of Moscow, and this leads traditional US allies like Turkey and Qatar to gravitate towards a field composed essentially of the countries opposed to Washington.

Washington’s military and diplomatic defeat in the region will in the long run make it possible to change the economic structure of the Middle East. A multipolar reality will prevail, where regional powers like Egypt, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Iran will feel compelled to interact economically with the whole Eurasian continent as part of the Belt and Road Initiative.

The basic principle for Moscow and Beijing is the use of military, economic and diplomatic means to contain the United States in its unceasing drive to kill, steal and destroy.

From the Middle East to Asia

Beijing has focussed in Asia on the diplomatic field, facilitating talks between North and South Korea, accelerating the internal dialogue on the peninsula, thereby excluding external actors like the United States (who only have the intention of sabotaging the talks). Beijing’s military component has also played an important role, although never used directly as the Russian Federation did in Syria. Washington’s options vis-a-vis the Korean peninsular were strongly limited by the fact that bordering the DPRK were huge nuclear and conventional forces, that is to say, the deterrence offered by Russia and China. The combined military power of the DPRK, Russia and China made any hypothetical invasion and bombing of Pyongyang an impractical option for the United States.

As in the past, the economic lifeline extended to Pyongyang by Moscow and Beijing proved to be decisive in limiting the effects of the embargo and the complete financial war that Washington had declared on North Korea. Beijing and Moscow’s skilled diplomatic work with Seoul produced an effect similar to that of Turkey in the Middle East, with South Korea slowly seeming to drift towards the multipolar world offered by Russia and China, with important economic implications and prospects for unification of the peninsula.

Russia and China – through a combination of playing a clever game of diplomacy, military deterrence, and offering to the Korean peninsula the prospect of economic investment through the BRI – have managed to frustrate Washington’s efforts to unleash chaos on their borders via the Korean peninsula.

The United States seems to be losing its imperialistic mojo most significantly in Asia and the Middle East, not only militarily but also diplomatically and economically.

The situation is different in Europe and Venezuela, two geographical areas where Washington still enjoys greater geopolitical weight than in Asia and the Middle East. In both cases, the effectiveness of the two Sino-Russian resistance – in military, economic and diplomatic terms – is more limited, for different reasons. This situation, in line with the principle of America First and the return to the Monroe doctrine, will be the subject of the next article.

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Nearly assassinated by his own fighters, al-Baghdadi and his caliphate on its last legs (Video)

The Duran – News in Review – Episode 178.

Alex Christoforou

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The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss how the Islamic State has been rapidly losing territory over the last two years in Syria and Iraq, due to efforts by Russian and Syrian forces, as well as the US and their Kurdish allies.

The jihadist caliphate has lost most of its forces and resources, leading it to go into hiding.

Al-Masdar News is reporting that Daesh* leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was reportedly attacked in a village near Hajin by some of the terrorist organisation’s foreign fighters in an apparent coup attempt, The Guardian reported, citing anonymous intelligence sources. Baghdadi reportedly survived the alleged coup attempt, with his bodyguards taking him into hiding in the nearby desert.

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Meanwhile European leaders are shocked at US President Trump’s ISIS ultimatum. Via Zerohedge

After President Trump’s provocative tweets on Sunday wherein he urged European countries to “take back” and prosecute some 800 ISIS foreign fighters as US forces withdraw from Syria, or else “we will be forced to release them,” the message has been met with shock, confusion and indifference in Europe. Trump had warned the terrorists could subsequently “permeate Europe”.

Possibly the most pathetic and somewhat ironic response came from Denmark, where a spokesperson for Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen said Copenhagen won’t take back Danish Islamic State foreign fighters to stand trial in the country, according to the German Press Agency DPA“We are talking about the most dangerous people in the world. We should not take them back,” the spokesperson stressed, and added that the war in Syria is ongoing, making the US president’s statement premature.

Germany’s response was also interesting, given a government official framed ISIS fighters’ ability to return as a “right”.  A spokeswoman for Germany’s interior ministry said, “In principle, all German citizens and those suspected of having fought for so-called Islamic State have the right to return.” She even added that German ISIS fighters have “consular access” — as if the terrorists would walk right up to some embassy window in Turkey or Beirut!

Noting that the Iraqi government has also of late contacted Germany to transport foreign fighters to their home country for trial, she added, “But in Syria, the German government cannot guarantee legal and consular duties for jailed German citizens due to the armed conflict there.”

France, for its part, has already agreed to repatriate over 130 French Islamic State members as part of a deal reached in January with US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) who are holding them, after which they will go through the French legal system. However, French Secretary of State Laurent Nuñez still insisted that the west’s Kurdish allies would never merely let ISIS terrorists walk out their battlefield prisons free.

“It’s the Kurds who hold them and we have every confidence in their ability to keep them,” Nuñez told French broadcaster BFMTV on Sunday. “Anyway, if these individuals return to the national territory, they all have ongoing judicial proceedings, they will all be put on trial, and incarcerated,” he said, in comments which appeared to leave it up to others to make happen.

And representing the Belgian government, Justice Minister Koen Geens charged Trump with blindsiding his European allies with the demand, which included Trump underscoring that it is “time for others to step up and do the job” before it’s too late. “It would have been nice for friendly nations to have these kinds of questions raised through the usual diplomatic channels rather than a tweet in the middle of the night,” Geens said during a broadcast interview on Sunday, according to the AFP.

Meanwhile in the UK the issue has recently become politically explosive as debate over so-called British jihadist bride Shamima Begum continues. The now 19-year old joined Islamic State in 2015 after fleeing the UK when she was just 15. She’s now given birth in a Syrian refugee camp and is demanding safe return to Britain for fear that she and her child could die in the camp, so near the war zone.

Conservatives in Britain, such as Interior Minister Sajid Javid have argued that “dangerous individuals” coming back to the UK from battlefields in the Middle East should be stripped of their British citizenship. He said this option has already been “so far exercises more than 100 times,” otherwise he also advocates prosecution of apprehended returning suspects “regardless of their age and gender.”

Identified as French nationals fighting within ISIS’ ranks, via Khaama press news agency

The UN has estimated that in total up to 42,000 foreign fighters traveled to Iraq and Syria to join IS — which appears a very conservative estimate — and which includes about 900 from Germany and 850 from Britain.

SDF leaders have previously complained about the “lack the capacity” for mass incarceration of ISIS terrorists and the inability to have proper battlefield trials for them. Recent estimates have put the number of ISIS militants in US-SDF battlefield jails at over 1000, though Trump put the number at 800 in his tweet.

However, even once they do return to Europe it’s unclear the extent to which they’ll be properly prosecuted and locked in prison by European authorities.

For example, another fresh controversy that lately erupted in Britain involved a 29-year old UK woman who traveled to join ISIS, and was convicted for membership in a terrorist group upon her return to Britain. She was jailed on a six year sentence in 2016, but is now already walking free a mere less than three years after her conviction.

 

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