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American hysteria over Russia will lead to nuclear war, according to report

Russian media reacts strongly to the American Nuclear Posture Review, which tries to convince its readers that Russia is trying to take over the world

Seraphim Hanisch

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Russian television broadcast a dire sounding piece on February 5th that probably was rather disquieting to most Russians, and also a source of significant dismay to their hopes for a rapprochement in relations following the election of Donald Trump to the Presidency of the United States. The news agency “Vesti” explained that the US is preparing itself for nuclear war with Russia.

The US Department of Defense published its 2018 Nuclear Posture Review.  This consists of at least two documents that are public domain that detail the assessment the DoD made about nuclear threats from around the world.  The language about Russia is curious, for like Russia, the US repeatedly maintains that there is no desire for anything but good relations.

However, this is unfortunately either a blind claim or a willfully blind claim for the sake of propaganda.  Based on the insanity of the US government’s reaction or posture about Russia overall, with the military fears, the sanctions and the most recent incidents of the release of the “Kremlin list” of government heads and successful businessmen and women, and the close flyby of a Russian fighter jet to an American surveillance aircraft, the ever-present “RussiaGate” investigations; and the lack of visible insanity on the Russians’ side, it seems likely that the American version of what is causing the ‘need’ to resolidify ‘defenses’ is lacking in factual evidence and cannot be taken as conclusive or trustworthy.

Not that there is any precedent for this outrageous statement… and if you believe that…

The problem begins with a false premise:

Russia is not the Soviet Union and the Cold War is long over. However, despite our best efforts to sustain a positive relationship, Russia now perceives the United States and NATO as its principal opponent and impediment to realizing its destabilizing geopolitical goals in Eurasia. (Emphasis mine)

This is an extremely bold assertion, though for some of the people who influence the stance of US foreign and military policy, this is how they see it.  However, it is also rather skillful sophistry that is achieved by a combination of American desire for hegemony and also, unfortunately, by a certain level of vagueness on both sides.

The Russian component of this vagueness largely seems to rest on the matter of Ukraine.  Ukraine itself is rightly understood as the motherland of all the Rus’ (“all the Russias”) from history that runs back over a thousand years.  It was Kiev that was the great capital of the early Russian governorate, which slowly expanded to become the Russian Empire.

However, there is also a complicated and deeply tragic history regarding the Ukraine, notably during the Soviet era, when millions of Ukrainians perished in what some in that country now regard as an intentional genocide, perpetrated deliberately against them by the Soviets in Moscow, hence, “Russia.”

This issue itself is complex and warrants, even begs, further exposition, but it is beyond the scope of this article. Some understanding may be gained by reading this piece, which gives an interesting survey of the history of Ukraine.  (Be aware though that it still comes from a publication with Western perspective.)

The main point is that Ukraine’s own nationalistic wish is spawned from factors including a national memory that points at Moscow as the source of their problems.  The fact that the Russian Federation is not Communist does not deter this point of view, because although the Russian nation is no longer a dictatorship, it still does not always conduct its foreign and national affairs transparently, and the desire for a real sense of self-determination is magnified by the allure of the glittering, wealthy West. The Western powers, most notably the USA, know this and have been teasing the Ukrainians with it.

Some of them, in Kiev and the western areas of the country (not all of which were Soviet territories at one point) have long had ties more to Europe than to Russia, and the inclusion of their territories in the Soviet Union was a source of further bitterness.  For many people in Ukraine, their history is of living in a battlefield of foreign powers.

They are understandably almost instinctively upset about any power’s designs on their territory, but it is also easy to manipulate this characteristic, and the United States has led the current struggle for Ukraine yet again.  The allure of Western European life seems to be what drew so many to the Euromaidan struggle in 2014, but the present day economy under the pro-Western government also appears to be in a shambles.

At any rate, the historical memory of extremely authoritarian and cruel Soviet rule in the region, plus the present day “vagueness” that seems to exist with regards to Russian foreign affairs, helps the West to cast Russia as an authoritarian nation, led by a “secret Communist”, Vladimir Putin, “who used to be a KGB agent.”

When one gives this information to many Americans, the conclusion they draw is clear.

The Pentagon, the central hub of US military operations.

Now to be sure, Vladimir Putin has been extremely open and candid about his nation and his own assertions of a strong Russian nation are absolutely proper for Russia, as they are for any nation. Nationalism is held extremely strongly in the United States, and again, history plays a part.  The recent history of what amounts to world dominance, militarily, scientifically, academically, and culturally, gives a sense to Americans that it is their country which is the guardian of all that is good.

But what are they guarding?  That greatness has shown many signs of slipping into decadence, such as happened in the waning days of the Roman Empire, where people lost their vision of becoming great, and have been self-indulgent in their perceived independence, not only of other nations and cultures, but of any power, including the Highest Power.  We have seen it become legal to call homosexual unions “marriage” and depravity, drug use, and tremendous unproductive navel-gazing have become more and more prevalent in a nation that, a mere 45 years ago, really stood as a defender of Christian freedom.

It is not possible that a nation living in delusion about itself can have a clear view of those nations outside itself.  And Russia has moved in the opposite direction as has the West.  The struggle exists, for Russia under Communism suffered great damage to the institutions of family, marriage and Church, but the move of the Federation now is to rebuild these core values.  All this while for a time, America seemed to be engaged in self-destruction by attacking these same core values.

Now, America’s military is in an extremely dangerous place.  The amount of sheer power the military has is greater than any in the world.  Although Russia and China also have incredibly capable military forces, the Chinese are untested in battle thus far, and the Russians are just beginning to show their own incredible capabilities.  But the United States has been at war almost continuously since at least as early as 2001, and this projection of power does create experience.

This Nuclear Posture Review shows us the face of a country who is deluded, hysterical, as the Russian media calls it, and they are right.  Despite the issues with Russia and Ukraine or Syria, Russia’s political will does not remotely resemble the notion that Russia is in an expansionist stage and that it wants to take over the former Soviet republics and then expand into the West.  Russia does want to chart her own course, and as a great power, and one with a long history and long memory of suffering, she wants to try to protect her own people from more suffering.

The American posture points the finger at Russia for being a threat, and then implies that Russia is a threat in very well-crafted language.  And this makes the assessment even more dangerous:

Russia has significantly increased the capabilities of its non-nuclear forces to project power into regions adjacent to Russia and, as previously discussed, has violated multiple treaty obligations and other important commitments. Most concerning are Russia’s national security policies, strategy, and doctrine that include an emphasis on the threat of limited nuclear escalation, and its continuing development and fielding of increasingly diverse and expanding nuclear capabilities. Moscow threatens and exercises limited nuclear first use, suggesting a mistaken expectation that coercive nuclear threats or limited first use could paralyze the United States and NATO and thereby end a conflict on terms favorable to Russia. Some in the United States refer to this as Russia’s “escalate to de-escalate” doctrine. “De-escalation” in this sense follows from Moscow’s mistaken assumption of Western capitulation on terms favorable to Moscow.

Effective U.S. deterrence of Russian nuclear attack and non-nuclear strategic attack now requires ensuring that the Russian leadership does not miscalculate regarding the consequences of limited nuclear first use, either regionally or against the United States itself. Russia must instead understand that nuclear first-use, however limited, will fail to achieve its objectives, fundamentally alter the nature of a conflict, and trigger incalculable and intolerable costs for Moscow. Our strategy will ensure Russia understands that any use of nuclear weapons, however limited, is unacceptable.

The U.S. deterrent tailored to Russia, therefore, will be capable of holding at risk, under all conditions, what Russia’s leadership most values. It will pose insurmountable difficulties to any Russian strategy of aggression against the United States, its allies, or partners and ensure the credible prospect of unacceptably dire costs to the Russian leadership if it were to choose aggression.

This is an amazing construction and assertion, and it is extremely dangerous for a nation with simultaneously massive power and a deluded worldview to hold.  It is also very difficult to get people who have such a suspicious point of view to back away from that suspicion. There is a great deal of bondage such belief and fear exerts on those who hold it.

That being said, this situation helps explain what many in the alternative media do – to counter media and political bias and to report on events in a light that is hopefully objective and true.  The Vesti newspiece was in its own way as alarmist as the American document it reported is.  The real way through this is obviously through increased understanding of the truth in all matters – historical, ideological, and in our case here, geopolitical.

The American side has taken several nasty jabs at the Russians recently, in this document and last week’s “Kremlin list”, but there is also hope that the disintegrating “Russiagate” investigation will come to the true conclusions about this matter, and so free the hands of those in America who understand that Russia is anything but an enemy or adversary.

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Is this man the puppet master of Ukraine’s new president or an overhyped bogeyman?

Smiling to himself, Kolomoisky would be within his rights to think that he has never had it so good.

RT

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Via RT…


It doesn’t actually matter if Ukrainian-Israeli billionaire Igor Kolomoisky is the real power behind Volodymyr Zelensky – the president elect has to get rid of the oligarch if he is to make a break with the country’s corrupt past.

The plots, deceits and conflicts of interest in Ukrainian politics are so transparent and hyperbolic, that to say that novice politician Zelensky was a protégé of his long-time employer was not something that required months of local investigative journalism – it was just out there.

Zelensky’s comedy troupe has been on Kolomoisky’s top-rated channel for the past eight years, and his media asset spent every possible resource promoting the contender against incumbent Petro Poroshenko, a personal enemy of the tycoon, who hasn’t even risked entering Ukraine in the past months.

Similarly, the millions and the nous needed to run a presidential campaign in a country of nearly 50 million people had to come from somewhere, and Kolomoisky’s lieutenants were said to be in all key posts. The two issued half-hearted denials that one was a frontman for the other, insisting that they were business partners with a cordial working relationship, but voters had to take their word for it.

Now that the supposed scheme has paid off with Zelensky’s spectacular victory in Sunday’s run-off, Ukrainian voters are asking: what does Kolomoisky want now, and will he be allowed to run the show?

‘One-of-a-kind chancer’

Born in 1963, in a family of two Jewish engineers, Kolomoisky is the type of businessman that was once the staple of the post-Soviet public sphere, but represents a dying breed.

That is, he is not an entrepreneur in the established Western sense at all – he did not go from a Soviet bloc apartment to Lake Geneva villas by inventing a new product, or even setting up an efficient business structure in an existing field.

Rather he is an opportunist who got wealthy by skilfully reading trends as the Soviet economy opened up – selling Western-made computers in the late 1980s – and later when independent Ukraine transitioned to a market economy and Kolomoisky managed to get his hands on a large amount of privatisation vouchers that put many of the juiciest local metals and energy concerns into his hands, which he then modernised.

What he possesses is a chutzpah and unscrupulousness that is rare even among his peers. Vladimir Putin once called him a “one-of-a-kind chancer” who managed to “swindle [Chelsea owner] Roman Abramovich himself.” In the perma-chaos of Ukrainian law and politics, where all moves are always on the table, his tactical acumen has got him ahead.

Kolomoisky’s lifeblood is connections and power rather than any pure profit on the balance sheet, though no one actually knows how that would read, as the Privat Group he part-owns is reported to own over 100 businesses in dozens of Ukrainian spheres through a complex network of offshore companies and obscure intermediaries (“There is no Privat Group, it is a media confection,” the oligarch himself says, straight-faced.)

Unsurprisingly, he has been dabbling in politics for decades, particularly following the first Orange Revolution in 2004. Though the vehicles for his support have not been noted for a particular ideological consistency – in reportedly backing Viktor Yushchenko, then Yulia Tymoshenko, he was merely putting his millions on what he thought would be a winning horse.

Grasp exceeds reach

But at some point in the post-Maidan euphoria, Kolomoisky’s narcissism got the better of him, and he accepted a post as the governor of his home region of Dnepropetrovsk, in 2014.

The qualities that might have made him a tolerable rogue on TV, began to grate in a more official role. From his penchant for using the political arena to settle his business disputes, to creating his own paramilitary force by sponsoring anti-Russian battalions out of his own pocket, to his somewhat charmless habit of grilling and threatening to put in prison those less powerful than him in fits of pique (“You wait for me out here like a wife for a cheating husband,” begins a viral expletive-strewn rant against an overwhelmed Radio Free Europe reporter).

There is a temptation here for a comparison with a Donald Trump given a developing country to play with, but for all of the shenanigans, his ideological views have always been relatively straightforward. Despite his Russia-loathing patriotism, not even his fans know what Kolomoisky stands for.

The oligarch fell out with fellow billionaire Poroshenko in early 2015, following a battle over the control of a large oil transport company between the state and the governor. The following year, his Privat Bank, which at one point handled one in four financial transactions in the country was nationalized, though the government said that Kolomoisky had turned it into a mere shell by giving $5 billion of its savings to Privat Group companies.

Other significant assets were seized, the government took to London to launch a case against his international companies, and though never banished, Kolomoisky himself decided it would be safer if he spent as long as necessary jetting between his adopted homes in Switzerland and Tel Aviv, with the occasional trip to London for the foreseeable future.

But the adventurer falls – and rises again. The London case has been dropped due to lack of jurisdiction, and only last week a ruling came shockingly overturning the three-year-old nationalization of Privat Bank.

Smiling to himself, Kolomoisky would be within his rights to think that he has never had it so good.

Own man

Zelensky must disabuse him of that notion.

It doesn’t matter that they are friends. Or what handshake agreements they made beforehand. Or that he travelled to Geneva and Tel-Aviv 13 times in the past two years. Or what kompromat Kolomoisky may or may not have on him. It doesn’t matter that his head of security is the man who, for years, guarded the oligarch, and that he may quite genuinely fear for his own safety (it’s not like nothing bad has ever happened to Ukrainian presidents).

Volodymyr Zelensky is now the leader of a large country, with the backing of 13.5 million voters. It is to them that he promised a break with past bribery, graft and cronyism. Even by tolerating one man – and one who makes Poroshenko look wholesome – next to him, he discredits all of that. He will have the support of the people if he pits himself against the puppet master – no one would have elected Kolomoisky in his stead.

Whether the oligarch is told to stay away, whether Ukraine enables the financial fraud investigation into him that has been opened by the FBI, or if he is just treated to the letter of the law, all will be good enough. This is the first and main test, and millions who were prepared to accept the legal fiction of the independent candidate two months ago, will now want to see reality to match. Zelensky’s TV president protagonist in Servant of the People – also broadcast by Kolomoisky’s channel, obviously, would never have compromised like that.

What hinges on this is not just the fate of Zelensky’s presidency, but the chance for Ukraine to restore battered faith in its democracy shaken by a succession of compromised failures at the helm.

Igor Ogorodnev

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Roger Waters – The People’s Champion for Freedom

In February 2019, Waters showed his support for the Venezuelan Maduro government and continues to be totally against US regime change plans there.

Richard Galustian

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Submitted by Richard Galustian 

Roger Waters is one of Britain’s most successful and talented musicians and composers but more importantly is an outstanding champion for freedom in the world, beyond compare to any other artist turned political activist.

By way of background, he co-founded the rock band Pink Floyd in 1965.

A landmark turning point of his political activism occurred in 1990, when Waters staged probably the largest rock concert in history, ‘The Wall – Live in Berlin’, with an attendance of nearly half a million people.

In more recent years Waters famously narrated the 2016 documentary ‘The Occupation of the American Mind: Israel’s Public Relations War in the United States’ about the insidious influence of Zionist Israel to shape American public opinion.

Waters has been an outspoken critic of America’s Neocons and particularly Donald Trump and his policies.

In 2017, Waters condemned Trump’s plan to build a wall separating the United States and Mexico, saying that his band’s iconic famous song, ‘The Wall’ is as he put it “very relevant now with Mr. Trump and all of this talk of building walls and creating as much enmity as possible between races and religions.”

In February 2019, Waters showed his support for the Venezuelan Maduro government and continues to be totally against US regime change plans there, or any place else for that matter.

Here below is a must see recent Roger Waters interview, via satellite from New York, where he speaks brilliantly, succinctly and honestly, unlike no other celebrity, about FREEDOM and the related issues of the day.

The only other artist turned activist, but purely for human rights reasons, as she is apolitical, is the incredible Carla Ortiz.

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ISIS Says Behind Sri Lanka Bombings; Was ‘Retaliation’ For New Zealand Mosque Massacre

ISIS’s claim couldn’t be confirmed and the group has been  known to make “opportunistic” claims in the past, according to WaPo. 

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Via Zerohedge…


Shortly after the death toll from Sunday’s Easter bombings in Sri Lanka climbed above the 300 mark, ISIS validated the Sri Lankan government’s suspicions that a domestic jihadi organization had help from an international terror network while planning the bombings were validated when ISIS took credit for the attacks.

The claim was made via a report from ISIS’s Amaq news agency. Though the group has lost almost all of the territory that was once part of its transnational caliphate, ISIS now boasts cells across the Muslim world, including in North Africa and elsewhere. Before ISIS took credit for the attack, a Sri Lankan official revealed that Sunday’s attacks were intended as retaliation for the killing of 50 Muslims during last month’s mass shooting in Christchurch, New Zealand.

However, the Sri Lankan government didn’t offer any evidence for that claim, or the claim that Sunday’s attacks were planned by two Islamic groups (though that now appears to have been substantiated by ISIS’s claim of responsibility). The group is believed to have worked with the National Tawheed Jamaath, according to the NYT.

“The preliminary investigations have revealed that what happened in Sri Lanka was in retaliation for the attack against Muslims in Christchurch,” State Minister of Defense Ruwan Wijewardene told the Parliament.

Meanwhile, the number of suspects arrested in connection with the attacks had increased to 40 from 24 as of Tuesday. The government had declared a national emergency that allowed it sweeping powers to interrogate and detain suspects.

On Monday, the FBI pledged to send agents to Sri Lanka and provide laboratory support for the investigation.

As the death toll in Sri Lanka climbs, the attack is cementing its position as the deadliest terror attack in the region.

  • 321 (as of now): Sri Lanka bombings, 2019
  • 257 Mumbai attacks, 1993
  • 189 Mumbai train blasts, 2006 166 Mumbai attacks, 2008
  • 151 APS/Peshawar school attack, 2014
  • 149 Mastung/Balochistan election rally attack, 2018

Meanwhile, funeral services for some of the bombing victims began on Tuesday.

Even before ISIS took credit for the attack, analysts told the Washington Post that its unprecedented violence suggested that a well-financed international organization was likely involved.

The bombings on Sunday, however, came with little precedent. Sri Lanka may have endured a ghastly civil war and suicide bombings in the past – some credit the Tamil Tigers with pioneering the tactic – but nothing of this scale. Analysts were stunned by the apparent level of coordination behind the strikes, which occurred around the same time on both sides of the country, and suggested the attacks carried the hallmarks of a more international plot.

“Sri Lanka has never seen this sort of attack – coordinated, multiple, high-casualty – ever before, even with the Tamil Tigers during the course of a brutal civil war,” Alan Keenan, a Sri Lanka expert at the International Crisis Group, told the Financial Times. “I’m not really convinced this is a Sri Lankan thing. I think the dynamics are global, not driven by some indigenous debate. It seems to me to be a different kind of ballgame.”

Hinting at possible ISIS involvement, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said during a Monday press conference that “radical Islamic terror” remained a threat even after ISIS’s defeats in Syria.

Of course, ISIS’s claim couldn’t be confirmed and the group has been  known to make “opportunistic” claims in the past, according to WaPo. The extremist group said the attacks were targeting Christians and “coalition countries” and were carried out by fighters from its organization.

Speculation that the government had advanced warning of the attacks, but failed to act amid a power struggle between the country’s president and prime minister, unnerved citizens and contributed to a brewing backlash. Following the bombings, schools and mass had been canceled until at least Monday, with masses called off “until further notice.”

 

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