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The Korea issue is now in the hands of the BRICS

Whether by design or coincidence, the proximate timing of North Korea’s nuclear test and the BRICS summit is extremely relevant.

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While reading into the internal political decisions of North Korea is far from easy, one gets a decidedly better perspective when one assesses North Korean decisions in a broader regional context.

Today’s apparent subterranean detention of a nuclear weapon by Pyongyang, a weapon which is widely thought to be a hydrogen bomb, coincides with the commencement of the 9th annual BRICS Summit in Xiamen, China.

The location of Xiamen vis-a-vis Pyongyang is shown on the map below.

While the BRICS summit is primarily concerned with financial, monetary and trade issues, geo-political issues are inevitably touched upon. This year in particular, with the border disputes between India and China resulting in a summer-long stand-off in the Doklam/Donglang region, the summit is seen as a place to test the extent to which India is willing to engage in dialogue over the matter with China after previously refusing to do so for months.

Many have commented that the proximate timing of India’s withdrawal of troops from Doklam/Donglang and the beginning of the BRICS summit was a calculated move to ease potential awkwardness at a summit aimed at increasing cooperation between BRICS member states which include, Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.

The North Korean issue was always likely to come up in some capacity, but this would have generally been peripheral to the dispute between two BRICS members (India and China).

Now however, due to North Korea’s nuclear test, the issues surrounding the Korean peninsula will almost certainly play a significant part in the discussions.

Is this what Pyongyang intended?

Either by coincidence or by design, the proximate timing of the nuclear test to the start of the BRICS summit means that the Korean ball is now very much in the BRICS court, especially when it comes to North Korea’s neighbours China and Russia who are the leading members of BRICS.

While a US attack on North Korea has always been unlikely, in spite of the disorganisation and inexperience of the Trump White House, with the leaders of the BRICS meeting in a neighbouring state, it is more or less certain that the US wouldn’t make any significant moves on the Korean peninsula at such a time.

This gives the BRICS a chance to make a statement on North Korea that could help instigate an early stage peace process, one that would be authored by countries that generally have a more trust based relationship with Pyongyang vis-a-vis the United States.

Such a thing could ironically help draw India into the fold as while India has disputes with China and remains on historically cordial terms with Russia, New Delhi has generally taken little interest to the Korean issue as it does not directly affect India. That being said, India has always enjoyed vastly better relations with North Korea than most western allied states in Asia and beyond, particularly where trade is concerned. India could also help lessen the controversy of its own nuclear weapons programme by showing a willingness to engage in a multi-lateral discussion on reducing tensions in a situation involving nuclear weapons.

While Brazil and South Africa would lend multi-continental weight to such a joint statement, it cannot be realistically said that Brazil and South Africa have the kinds of entrenched views on North Korea that many in Asia and North America do. Many in South Africa may however remember North Korea’s principled stand against the pre-1994 Apartheid regime. This could only help to enhance the prestige of such a BRICS statement on the matter.

While a nuclear test conducted by North Korea would clearly take time to plan, the date of the BRICS summit has been known for long enough that it would have allowed Pyongyang time to plan such a test to coincide with it.

Furthermore, with the US breaking international law in respect of raiding Russian diplomatic properties, Russia will if anything be more keen to demonstrate to the world, just how little the US is needed to interfere in the affairs of Asian and Eurasian countries.

While North Korea does not have any ‘allies’ per-se in the BRICS, it also does not have any antagonists or enemies.

This is therefore a golden opportunity for the BRICS and North Korea to meet half way and in doing so, the BRICS could also ideally satisfy the concerns of Seoul, all without allowing America to dictate the nature of events.

It could be a clever way to turn a potentially dangerous situation into a cautious win-win situation.

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BobValdez
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BobValdez

Lets hope cool heads prevail and such a win-win situation can be brought about.

Daisy Adler
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Daisy Adler

Without new direct discussions for peace between the two Koreas, the situation remains highly volatile and dangerous. Actually, there is NO military option to solve the problem. Any military incursion would mean the destruction of BOTH Koreas and a lethal danger for the 200,000 Americans present in the South, and Korea’s neighbors China, Russia and Japan.

Franz Kafka
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Franz Kafka

Did ‘Americans’ care about Americans when the USS Liberty was savaged by Israel? Did ‘Americans’ care about Americans when the false flag cum demolition of the WTC was staged? Did Americans care about Americans when the false flag attack on Pearl Harbor was forced on Japan? Did Americans care about Americans when Americans tricked the Russians into shooting down KAL Flight 007?

So, which ‘Americans’ are you referring to?

pogohere
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Re: “So, which ‘Americans’ are you referring to?” The realistic ones: Steve Bannon Isn’t Going Away by Walter Russell Mead, Hudson Institute Fellow (https://www.hudson.org/about/history) (Fat Man: Herman Kahn and the nuclear age, https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2005/06/27/fat-man) 22 Aug ’17 Wall Street Journal (excerpted) “President Trump’s highest officials remain committed, one way or another, to defending the global order the US has been building since the Truman era. That includes Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, Chief of Staff John Kelly and national security adviser General HR McMaster. These men share a disdain for the Obama administration’s retrenchment and retreat, though… Read more »

Simon
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Simon

Perhaps. A mature and calming statement from the BRICS supporting the double freeze plan would be fine.
But your map suggests a better idea; instead of flying home after the BRICS if Lavrov and the Chinese FM took that flight together to meet Kim it would have huge impact, and get the ball rolling on dialogue.
They could follow up by going to Seoul to see Moon, perhaps symbolically crossing the land border.
It would be the adults stepping in. Whist the US bully sulks in a corner.

John Mason
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John Mason

Very good Simon, may just work.

VeeNarian (Yerevan)
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VeeNarian (Yerevan)

It is time for bold initiatives by the BRICS or the NK situation could easily get out of hand. Perhaps, they are the only grouping that can initiate an end to the Korean War, finally. Why should the world wait for the madmen that control the US/EU/NATO/Japan/SK axis?

my2Cents
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my2Cents

Where are you Simon, surely not in the U.S.??. You make FAR too much sense. :-))

Franz Kafka
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Franz Kafka

Soon the only power remaining to the US will be the power to kill and destroy. And their karma is already among the worst in history. It is hard to believe that the death of the Anglo-Zionist Empire will be a painless one.

Ben
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Ben

The only thing that will stop the US is when the USD is no longer a reserve currency.
Until then, the rest of the world will continue to finance their own destruction.
$20 trillion and counting. Amazing no one can see this ponzi scheme.

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Germany Wants Nuclear Bombers

Germany does not manufacture atomic weapons but has come to consider itself as a nuclear power because it has vectors to use them.

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Via VoltaireNet.org:


Germany’s armed forces are currently studying the possibility of acquiring nuclear bombers capable of using the new American B61-12 atomic bombs.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon itself plans to deploy these new atomic bombs in the German region of Eifel, in violation of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

The German air force already has multi-tasking Tornado warplanes, which are already capable of deploying American atomic bombs. But those aircraft are going to be replaced, possibly, by European-developed Eurofighters, or by United States manufactured F/A-18 Super Hornets.

Either way, the warplane that Germany selects will have to be equipped with the AMAC (Aircraft Monitoring and Control) system, which allows the use of the new American atomic bombs and enables the regulation of the power of the explosion as well as at what height the bombs explode after they are launched.

Germany does not manufacture atomic weapons but has come to consider itself as a nuclear power because it has vectors to use them, and believes that this gives it the right to sit on the UN Security Council sharing the permanent member position occupied by France.

Both countries would thus represent the European Union, under the auspices of NATO.

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1st since Notre Dame: Yellow Vests back despite ‘unifying’ disaster & they are angry

‘Yellow Vests’ march in Paris for 23rd straight week.

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Via RT…


Yellow Vests protests brought clashes and tear gas back to the streets of Paris, despite politicians’ calls for “unity” in the wake of the Notre Dame fire. For protesters, the response to the fire only showed more inequality.

Saturday’s protests mark the 23rd straight weekend of anti-government demonstrations, but the first since Notre Dame de Paris went up in flames on Monday. Officials were quick to criticize the protesters for returning to the streets so soon after the disaster.

“The rioters will be back tomorrow,” Interior Minister Christophe Castaner told reporters on Friday. “The rioters have visibly not been moved by what happened at Notre-Dame.”

For many of the protesters, grief over the destruction of the 800-year-old landmark has made way for anger. With smoke still rising from Notre Dame, a group of French tycoons and businessmen pledged €1 billion to the cathedral’s reconstruction, money that the Yellow Vests say could be better spent elsewhere.

“If they can give dozens of millions to rebuild Notre Dame, they should stop telling us there is no money to respond to the social emergency,” trade union leader Philippe Martinez told France 24.

Saturday’s protests saw a return to scenes familiar since the Yellow Vests first mobilized in November to protest a fuel tax hike. Demonstrators in Paris’ Bastille district set barricades on fire and smashed vehicles, and police deployed tear gas to keep the crowds at bay.

Sporadic incidents of vandalism and looting were reported across the city, and some journalists even reported rioters throwing feces at police.

60,000 police officers were deployed across the country, and in Paris, a security perimeter was set up around Notre Dame. A planned march that would have passed the site was banned by police, and elsewhere, 137 protesters had been arrested by mid afternoon, police sources told Euronews.

Beginning as a show of anger against rising fuel costs in November, the Yellow Vests movement quickly evolved into a national demonstration of rage against falling living standards, income inequality, and the perceived elitism and pro-corporation policies of President Emmanuel Macron. Over 23 weeks of unrest, Macron has made several concessions to the protesters’ demands, but has thus far been unable to quell the rising dissent.

After Notre Dame caught fire on Monday, the president postponed a television address to the nation, during which he was expected to unveil a package of tax cuts and other economic reforms, another measure to calm the popular anger in France.

Macron’s address will be held on Thursday.

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O Canada! The True North Strong and Free – Not

Maybe it’s past time for Canadians to get serious again about their independence.

Jim Jatras

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Authored by James George Jatras via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


Canadian visitors to Washington sometimes wonder why their embassy stands at the foot of Capitol Hill.

The answer? To be close to where Canada’s laws are made.

A main showcase of Ottawa’s craven servility to Washington is Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s complicity in the US-led regime change operation being conducted against Venezuela. Not content with ruining his own country with multiculturalism, polysexualism, and the like, Li’l Justin has acted in lockstep with Big Brother to the south inslapping sanctions on Venezuelan officials and serving as a US agent of influence, especially with other countries in the western hemisphere:

‘A Canadian Press report published at the end of January revealed that Canadian diplomats worked systematically over several months with their Latin American counterparts in Caracas to prepare the current regime-change operation, pressing [Venezuelan President Nicolás] Maduro’s right-wing opponents to set aside their differences and mount a joint challenge to the government. “The turning point,” said the Canadian Press [Global News], “came Jan. 4, when the Lima Group … rejected the legitimacy of Maduro’s May 2018 election victory and his looming January 10 inauguration, while recognizing the ‘legitimately elected’ National Assembly.” The report cited an unnamed Canadian official as saying the opposition “were really looking for international support of some kind, to be able to hold onto a reason as to why they should unite, and push somebody like Juan Guaidó.”

‘One day prior to Maduro’s inauguration, [Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia] Freeland spoke to Guaidó, the newly-elected National Assembly speaker, by telephone to urge him to challenge the elected Venezuelan president.’

But that’s not all. Canada is out front and center in the “Five Eyes” intelligence agencies’ war on China’s Huawei – with direct prompting from US legislators and intelligence.  As explained by Col. Larry Wilkerson, former chief of staff to Gen. Colin Powell, it’s not that Huawei violated any law when circumventing US sanctions but it is the US that is acting illegally by unilaterally imposing sanctions that were never agreed to internationally. But that’s OK – when it comes to Washington’s claims of jurisdiction over every human being on the planet, Justin and Chrystia are happy to oblige!

Also, let’s not forget Chrystia’s role in keeping the pot boiling in Ukraine. It would of course be cynical (and probably racist) to attribute anything relating to Ukraine to her own interesting family background …

To be fair, the lickspittle attitude of Canadian officials towards their masters south of the 49th parallel is hardly unique in the world. Also to be fair, it’s natural and would be generally beneficial for Canada to have a positive relationship with a powerful, kindred neighbor rather than a negative one. Think of Austria’s ties to Germany, or the Trans-Tasman relationship of Australia and New Zealand, or the links that still exist between Russia and Ukraine despite efforts by the west to set them against each other (as, for example, Spain and Portugal were at loggerheads for several centuries, when the latter was a loyal ally of Spain’s foe, Great Britain, to such an extent that Portugal was sometimes shown on maps and globes in the same pink as British possessions; a similar situation existed between Argentina and British ally Chile).

A close and mutually advantageous relationship is one thing, but Canada’s de facto loss of independence is another. Not only does the US control Canada’s diplomacy, military, and intelligence but also her financial system (with, among other levers, the notorious FATCA law, which places Canadian institutions under the supervision of the IRS, with Canada’s revenue service acting, care of the Canadian taxpayer, as a cat’s paw for not only the IRS but the NSA and other snooping agencies). As explained by one Canadian nationalist (yes, they do exist!), the redoubtable David Orchard, trade is also a critical issue:

‘Canada …, after almost three decades of “free trade” with the U.S., has more than $1.2 trillion in federal and provincial debt, large deficits at every level, no national child or dental care, high university tuition, miserly old age pensions, years of massive budget cuts, and giveaway prices for its exports of oil, gas, timber and minerals.

‘For 150 years, great Canadian leaders have warned that without an economic border with the United States, we would soon no longer have a political border.

‘We once owned the world’s largest farm machinery maker, Massey Harris, headquartered in Toronto; built the world’s largest and most respected marketer of wheat and barley, the Canadian Wheat Board, based in Winnipeg; created a great transcontinental railway system, beginning in Montreal, which tied our country together; and saw Vancouver’s shipyards produce the beautiful Fast Cat ferry.

‘Instead of spending hundreds of billions on foreign-made machinery, electronics, automobiles, ships, fighter jets and passenger aircraft (even payroll systems for federal employees!), we can build our own, both for the domestic and export market.

‘We once designed and built the world’s most advanced jet interceptor, the Avro Arrow, so we know it can be done. [Emphasis added] With Canada’s resources and ingenuity, it could create a prosperous, domestically controlled economy that would give Canadians multiple benefits, security and pride of ownership. All that is required is some of the will that drove our ancestors to create an alternate power in North America. As George-Étienne Cartier, the great Québécois Father of Confederation, put it, “Now everything depends on our patriotism.”’ [Note: Orchard is the author of the must-read book The Fight for Canada: Four Centuries of Resistance to American Expansionism. To begin at the beginning, in the late 1680s, as part of English-French rivalry in North America, Massachusetts Puritans sought to root out the nest of popish deviltry known as Quebec. Following their disastrous 1690 defeat, they decided to fight Satan closer to home by hanging witches. The rest, as they say, is history…]

Scratch a Canadian patriot and you’ll hear about the Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow. As a watershed moment in Canada’s downward slide into subservience, the cancellation of what by all accounts was a magnificent aircraft – and a snapshot of what Canada’s international competitiveness (including in advanced aerospace) could have looked like had it been able to develop independently – might have been the point of being sucked into the American vortex. As noted by one response to my suggestion that Ottawa’s stance on Venezuela amounted to Canada’s annexation by the US: “Canadian here…unfortunately, the above is true (not literally of course, but in practice). It goes back even before the time of Diefenbaker, who canceled our Avro Arrow program on demand from the US – thus destroying our aerospace industry and causing brain drain to the US/Europe.”

To this day, the decision of then-Prime Minister John Diefenbaker to kill the Arrow project (and “put 14,528 Avro employees, as well as nearly 15,000 other employees in the Avro supply chain of outside suppliers, out of work”) on what came to be known as “Black Friday,” February 20, 1959, remains controversial and shrouded in mystery. A mix of budgetary, political, technological, and personality factors has been cited, none of them conclusive. Pressure from the US side, including unwillingness of Washington to purchase a Canadian aircraft when the US could pressure them to buy American planes and missiles, no doubt played a key role: “Instead of the CF-105, the RCAF invested in a variety of Century Series fighters from the United States. These included the F-104 Starfighter (46 percent of which were lost in Canadian service), and (more controversial, given the cancellation of the Arrow) the CF-101 Voodoo. The Voodoo served as an interceptor, but at a level of performance generally below that expected of the Arrow.”

While we may never know reliably why Diefenbaker cancelled the Arrow or how Canada or Canadian industry might have followed a different path, there’s no question of the superior capabilities of the Arrow. As it happens, one of the few pilots who had a chance to test the Arrow in an impromptu friendly dogfight is now-retired USAF fighter pilot Col. George Jatras, later US Air Attaché in Moscow (also, this analyst’s father). As he related in 2017:

‘I’ve received a number of messages in the last couple days about this bird, including some that say it may be revived. I don’t know how The Arrow would compare to today’s aircraft, but I had a first-hand lesson on how it faired against the F-102.

‘In 1959, I was stationed at Suffolk County AFB on Long Island with the 2nd Fighter Interceptor Squadron. We had an informal exchange program with a Canadian fighter squadron stationed near Montreal. From time to time, two or four aircraft from one of the squadrons would fly to the other’s base on a weekend cross country.

‘On one such exchange, I was #3 in a four ship formation led by [former Tuskegee airmanErnie Craigwell (I don’t recall who the other pilots were). As we entered Canadian airspace, cruising at about 40,000 ft., we spotted a contrail well above our altitude (probably at 50,000ft.) and closing very fast.  As the other aircraft appeared to be passing by, we could clearly see the delta shaped wing and knew it was the Avro Arrow that the Canadian pilots had told us about. Then, instead of just passing by, he rolled in on us! Ernie called for a break and we split into elements. When we talked about the encounter afterwards we all agreed that our first thought was, “This guy is in for a surprise; he doesn’t know that he’s taking on the F-102.”  Well, we were the ones in for a surprise. Even with two elements covering each other, not one of us could get on his tail. His power and maneuverability were awesome.  After he had played with us for a few minutes, like a cat with four mice, he zoomed back up to about 50K and went on his way. What an aircraft! What a shame that it never went into production.’

What is perhaps most curious about the Arrow’s demise is that “everything was ordered brutally destroyed; plans, tools, parts, and the completed planes themselves were to be cut up, destroyed, scrapped and everything made to disappear.”  Why? Well, security of course! Don’t engage in conspiracy theories …

The Canadian national anthem finishes with a pledge: “O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.” It should be noted that understandably resentful Loyalists fleeing the US following the American Revolution were a major contribution to the growth of Canada’s English-speaking population. American troops – back when we were the plucky underdog fighting the mighty British Empire – invaded Canada in 1775 and during the War of 1812 but were defeated. Relations got testy during the American Civil War as well, and even afterwards the US was wary of a proposed united “Kingdom of Canada,” hence the choice of the name “Dominion” in 1967. If today’s Canadians think we-all down here don’t know whom they’ve mostly had in mind to “stand on guard” against all this time, they’d better think again.

Maybe it’s past time for Canadians to get serious again about their independence – eh?

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