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China to eradicate poverty in 3 years

The plan is both ambitious and achievable based on China’s remarkable economic and infrastructural records.

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Chinese news outlet Xinhua has released the full remarks of President Xi Jinping from a 23 June symposium on the eradication of poverty which took place in Shanxi Province.

During his speech President Xi stated that he seeks to embark on a three year plan to fully eradicate rural poverty in the county.

The Chinese economic boom which begun during the reformist era of Paramount Leader Deng Xiaoping, has transformed China from a mainly agrarian developing economy to an industrial powerhouse and leading exporter. The IMF has recently stated that it expects to move its headquarters to China within a decade as it is projected with almost complete certainty that in terms of GDP, the Chinese economy will soon outpace that of the United States which had led the world for most of the 20th century and into the 21st. In many other areas, China already leads the world.

Three major developments have occurred under the leadership of Xi Jinping which have had further transformative effects on China.

First of all, it was during XI’s period in office that in 2013, China announced One Belt–One Road, the wide reaching trading/commerce infrastructure plan which seeks to harmonise world trade and elevate the trading capacities of both developing and developed economies. Crucially, unlike western derived schemes such as the WTO, One Belt–One Road does not include any requirements on governance or a nation’s economic characteristics. Instead, China seeks to integrate each nation’s growing capacities along wide reaching land roads and maritime belts in an interlocking system which plays to the existing and projected strengths of economies across several continents.

The second great achievement of the Xi era has been the flourishing of China’s internal market for not only basic goods but also Chinese made luxury goods. It is not out of the question that in the near future China’s number one market for Chinese made goods, will in fact be China, just as this was the case in respect of the United States during much of the 20th century.

Finally, China is rapidly moving on a path towards energy self-sufficiency and doing so in a manner that relies greatly on green technology. New cities in China are increasingly running primarily or entirely on solar energy at a pace which outstrips every other major nation and global region.

In many ways, the logical final frontier of China’s march towards full prosperity is the eradication of what remains of poor conditions in some rural areas.

President Xi said the following on the subject,

“We must send our best talents to the front line of the tough battle with extreme poverty. All levels of government should actively send cadres to station in poor villages in an effort to fortify the party leadership”.

He continued,

“The priority for the next stage is to solve the problems of social services, infrastructure and a basic medical services shortage in areas with deep-rooted poverty issues”.

The South China Morning Post further reports that Xi’s plan includes the following goals 

–An equitable distribution of land in poor rural areas 

–Relocate certain residents in decrepit areas to areas with modern living and working accommodations 

–Improve rural medical facilities and care, with an emphasis on the elderly and ill

–Employ local residence in environmental protection initiatives 

–Improve rural education 

–Create new transport infrastructure to poor rural locations 

–Create a plethora of new jobs in rural areas 

–Remove 12 million people from the official definition of poverty 

President Xi has stated that he believes these ambitious goals can be accomplished in spite of their broad scope. He has said,

“As long as we pay great attention, think correctly, take effective measures and work in a down-to-earth way, abject poverty is absolutely conquerable”.

China’s growth between 1978 and the present day has confounded most naysayers and defied the trends which have shaped modern expectations for economic and infrastructural growth.

Based on this reality, there is every chance that President Xi’s ambitious plans will in a few short years, become a settled reality for China.

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Shahna
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I realise it’s been pretty rough for some but nonetheless it’s been simply amazing.
Amazing what a govt can achieve when it also works for all its people instead of only for itself and a rich few.

….Even more amazing that this should be so for China – and not a Western nation where instead we see, increasing poverty.

Hamletquest
Guest
Hamletquest

However you describe it, communism with a capitalist twist or capitalism with a communist twist the state organised economy seems to work.

Simon
Guest
Simon

I’d describe it as getting your priorities right, based on reality.
Of course if they ‘enjoyed’ Liberal Democracy they might prioritise spending $2 trillion on a 16 year war in eg Bolivia or Congo instead.

Terry Ross
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Terry Ross

I cannot imagine a Liberal China with a high proportion of its 1.38 BILLION people confused about gender identity.

JNDillard
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JNDillard

I don’t know who I admire more – Putin or Xi. Together, these guys are presenting the world with a viable way forward as the Empire dies.

tomo stojanovic
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tomo stojanovic

it’s simple – to prosper, a country just needs to make sure psychopaths are not put in positions of power. They cannot care about others even if they wanted to, such is the nature of their sickness. Putting them in charge of a country is like putting a fox in charge of a hen house. Americans instead glorify and worship them.

Godfree Roberts
Guest

If you study it, you’ll see that our system weeds out anyone who’s not sociopathic.

XRGRSF
Guest
XRGRSF

IMO the economic models of both Russia, and China are National Socialist. Read Mein Kampf, and pay special attention to the economic theories posited by Gottfried Feder. This exercise requires conscious thought so it’s not for those faint of heart or foggy of mind. Reading Mein Kampf will no more turn a person into a Nazi that reading Das Capital will turn someone into a Communist so please spare me the “NAZI, NAZI, NAZI !!!” hysteria. It seems that a number of nations, especially in the Pacific rim, have begun to move purposefully toward the NS economic model. Regardless of… Read more »

Shahna
Guest

….. Have you actually read Mein Kampf? I mean … started on the first page and gone all the way to the last? I ask because I tried. Really – I REALLY TRIED But it’s a whole big lorry catootie of …. endless WAFFLING. (I thought the preface’s description of “political pornography” was… kind.) It was banned here you see, so of course, I wanted to read it. And I eventually lent it to someone under the same terms I received it: You may borrow it if you promise never to return it. Nationalist Socialist Germany had some really very… Read more »

XRGRSF
Guest
XRGRSF

Political Pornography? Do you think the reviewer could be somewhat biased. Yes, I’ve studied Mein Kampf. I have the two major translations from German to English: Murphy, and Manheim. I also have papers done my Chinese, Japanese, and Russian scholars. There is also an on line searchable version of Mein Kampf. Obviously, I don’t view Mein Kamph in the way you do, and the reason could be that I read with an open mind. Considering that you live in a society where Mein Kampf is banned perhaps you should ask why? What is it that your social engineers are afraid… Read more »

Shahna
Guest

Was the writer of the preface biased? Probably – seems to me everyone is biased about MK one way or the other. I asked you because I was curious… I read most of the book but found it excruciatingly waffly. (And that was a LONG time ago.) I was hoping for …. reason rather than ‘just umbrage.’ I don’t live in a society where MK is banned. I live in South Africa: it was banned under the Apartheid Govt and book banning went the way of that govt. (NP govt was VERY good friends with Israel. And I mean VERY… Read more »

MyWikiDisQus
Guest
MyWikiDisQus

You wrote that you’ve read Mein Kampf (see: http://hitler.org/writings/Mein_Kampf/ ). Chapter 11 succinctly articulates Adolf’s extreme racism against the Jewish people. Under Germany’s national socialist policies, the country miraculously recovered economically from the severe financial demands put upon it by the World War I reparations outlined in Article 231 of the Treaty of Versailles. However what if the fuehrer: 1. Didn’t blame the woes of German poverty on an entire race of people? 2. Didn’t extol the false virtues of Aryan society propaganda? 3. Didn’t put Germany on a path to destruction by making war in Europe? In your opinion:… Read more »

Seán Murphy
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Seán Murphy

Hitler and Germany didn’t start WW2: France and Britain declared war on Germany. Germany didn’t have much choice in the matter.

MyWikiDisQus
Guest
MyWikiDisQus

Germany invaded Czechoslovakia in March of 1939 and Poland on September 1, 1939 (today is the 78th anniversary). If you don’t consider those two events as the start of WW II, then you’ve read the wrong history books.

XRGRSF
Guest
XRGRSF

Germany invaded Czechoslovakia, and Poland to protect ethnic Germans from extermination. Also, there was the issue of taking back territory the return of which was provided for in the Versailles Treaty. England, France, and the Soviet Union piled on to turn a local issue into a war that deeply damaged their nations, and murdered as many as 75,000,000 people. Perhaps you’ve read the wrong history books.

MyWikiDisQus
Guest
MyWikiDisQus

The three and a half million ethnic Germans who lived in the North and Western regions of Czechoslovakia (Sudetenland) were never threatened with “extermination” as you falsely wrote.

Hitler coerced the Czechs into giving up Sudentenland or face invasion. The Munich Treaty that was brokered by Britain’s Neville Chamberlain allowed Germany to annex the regions thereby gaining 10,000 square miles of territory in September, 1938. Six months later, the German Wehrmacht occupied Prague and Hitler declared Czechoslovakia “no more” (see: http://www.wehrmacht-awards.com/service_awards/sudetenland_occupation.htm ).

XRGRSF
Guest
XRGRSF

Nations come, and nations go; history is replete with that. Czechoslovakia peeled off of the Austro-Hungarian empire in 1918, bounced around as pseudo nation until 1993, and then dissolved. During that time it was troublesome, and added greatly to global conflict. It reminds me of that other pseudo nation: Ukraine.

Constantine
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Constantine

Come on, dude. Hitler attacked Poland. What should the allies do? Sit and watch? They already did that in 1938, when it was only the USSR that prepared for a military conflict if necessary in order to aid Czechoslovakia.

Hitler and Germany DID start WWII. The revisionist view I tend to vehemently oppose is the one that originates in the Anglo-American countries, in Poland and the Baltics, always by virulent Russophobes. This is that the USSR is equally responsible for the outbreak of the war.

XRGRSF
Guest
XRGRSF

My post concerned the economics of NS Germany. I don’t care one wit about the Jewish people. What if? Who cares? What if you Jews didn’t invent the holohoax, and use it as an excuse to steal Palestine? What if you hadn’t put Israel on a path to destruction by feeding on the rest of the world? Do you really think you can protect yourselves with white quilt generated by your propaganda forever? Trust me, you will soon find that the sun does not rise, and fall on your fat kosher butt. A. The policies of exceptionalism, and militarism don’t… Read more »

MyWikiDisQus
Guest
MyWikiDisQus

Please, your accusations of being a Zionist sympathizer are wasted. You couldn’t even give an opinion without running your racist mouth off. My question to you was based on historical facts relative to Germany’s rise from the ashes of financial ruin, poverty and starvation of its people. If Hitler focused on growing the nation into an international hub for commerce instead of war, Germany may have been one of the great economic powers of that era. Germany was one of the first European nations to extricate itself from the Great Depression. Under the national socialists, unemployment was reduced from 6… Read more »

Constantine
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Constantine

While many policies of the Nazis were positive, the underlying context was that of a sacrosanct state of the chosen, superior race. And that affected the course of the country. Thus, the reduction of unemployment was based to a certain extent to the mobilization of the war industry and the expansion of the armed forces. And success was further fed by territorial expansion. This is the case of the gold reserves of Czechoslovakia (much of it being the former Russian Imperial gold seized by the Czech Legion during the Civil War) which were used to balance the increasing military costs… Read more »

XRGRSF
Guest
XRGRSF

Actually, I’m more of a fan of accurate history presented without distortion, and bias. You should try it sometime.

So tell me, Constantine, do you really view yourself as an Emperor?

XRGRSF
Guest
XRGRSF

Why can’t you stay on the subject of economics? In what way am I racist? Am I racist simply because I refuse to worship a pack of thieving Zionist Jews? Is it because your primary motivation is to use what you view as racism to attack anyone who fails to bow before your Zionist Jews? The world has grown weary of your constant cries of racism, and antisemitism. Besides, Judaism is supposed to be a religion not a race.

MyWikiDisQus
Guest
MyWikiDisQus

Glad you’re back. Let’s continue this thread and try and come to an understanding. You asked four questions in tandem. Q1: “Why can’t I stay on the subject of economics?” I did but I had to establish the background of Hitler’s racism he so succinctly declared in his autobiography as the foundation of my two points being, (A) his consuming bigotry towards the Jewish people blinded him from his greater achievement of leading Germany’s economic recovery and (B) by exploiting the success of his work and spreading it throughout Europe, he may have laid the genesis for the European Union… Read more »

XRGRSF
Guest
XRGRSF

Indeed, let’s come to an understanding; 1. I made a comment on pre-WW 2 German economics, and you immediately piled on with the Jew garbage after I firmly stated that I was not supporting the Nazi cause. Why did you do that? Because the Jew is terrified of the effect of NS economics on their banking cartel. I submit a quote for Winston Churchill: “The unforgivable sin of Hitler’s German was to develop a new economic system by which the international bankers were deprived of their profits.” You then went on to obfuscate the subject by introducing spurious tidbits of… Read more »

MyWikiDisQus
Guest
MyWikiDisQus

X-Man, I have to shake my head at your ridiculous assumptions and lack of comprehension when someone posts historical, irrefutable facts that you deliberate misconstrue to support a line of personal thought that reveals your blind, unwarranted hatred for an entire race of people. Your original post is not in dispute about the economic benefits of the German government’s national socialist economic model in the early 1930’s. I even concurred with your understanding of that period in my initial post. Did you even read what I wrote? Here let me repeat it again, word for word. “Under Germany’s national socialist… Read more »

XRGRSF
Guest
XRGRSF

I’ve studied all of the Abrahamic religions, in excruciating detail, and that’s why I don’t subscribe to them. You, sir, regardless of any or no religion that you profess, are a Jew. In this instance you are condemned by your own words, “Jews are a people who may or may not follow a religion.” It’s no small wonder that you are terrified by a discussion of NS economics.

MyWikiDisQus
Guest
MyWikiDisQus

Your rant is incomprehensible and your conversation foul. You try and make a case for defamatory accusation based on what; that I wrote the truth? Despite your hatred for Jews, they are a tribe of people recognized by the world; the last of the Hebrew race. Like all peoples, there are good Jews and bad Jews representing the eternal struggle of man. They will all be judged in the end, like the rest of us. Your attempt to fashion a cogent argument about period economics and commingle it with racial condemnation is incredulous. You want to write about Germany’s national… Read more »

XRGRSF
Guest
XRGRSF

NS economics not NS policies. However, I love the way you people react when you’re desperate: Insults, name calling, and big words. Shakespeare had you pegged long ago, “All sound, and fury signifying nothing.”

MyWikiDisQus
Guest
MyWikiDisQus

Whoa, back up a few posts, X-Man, it was you who slung the first vitriol, not me! However I apologize, I’ll try not to use “big words” to confound you in the future.

Policies are the administrative foundation for a government’s action. For example, The National Socialist policy for the German Workers Party was based upon a 25 point program (see: http://www.hitler.org/writings/programme/ ).

Here is some more detail on their economic policies (see: http://ihr.org/other/bauer1939economicpolicy )

and here (see: https://nazieconomicpolicy.wordpress.com/2010/10/29/1933-to-1936/ ).

Born Free
Guest
Born Free

I’ll believe it when I see it. They are in a bad financial position now and have been for years….way worse than America…

Godfree Roberts
Guest

They’re in great shape financially, according the the BIS. Average debt for their peers (way less than Japan’s) fast, sustainable growth, strong public support. Perhaps you’ve read too many headlines like these: 1990. The Economist. China’s economy has come to a halt. 1996. The Economist. China’s economy will face a hard landing 1998. The Economist: China’s economy enters a dangerous period of sluggish growth. 1999. Bank of Canada: Likelihood of a hard landing for the Chinese economy. 2000. Chicago Tribune: China currency move nails hard landing risk coffin. 2001. Wilbanks, Smith & Thomas: A hard landing in China. 2002. Westchester… Read more »

louis robert
Guest
louis robert

Confirmation:

“Democracy is Failing | Eric X Li | Oxford Union”

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=9kqwMKyBvLc

Godfree Roberts
Guest

Weirdly, it’s China that’s the real democracy:https://www.unz.com/article/selling-democracy-to-china/#new_comments

louis robert
Guest
louis robert

Very interesting. Thanks, Godfree.

China will be central in my grandchildren’s world, a very different one indeed from the current one.

Born Free
Guest
Born Free

Disagree. China is facing a bank crisis because of their debt. It’s much greater than ours as a percentage of GDP.

Godfree Roberts
Guest

Here’s ours and theirs:comment image

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BREXIT storm deepens, as parliamentary coup may be forming against May and Corbyn

The Duran – News in Review – Episode 166.

Alex Christoforou

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Emboldened by Theresa May’s lack of leadership and will to deliver the Brexit that UK citizens voted for in a democratic referendum, remain MPs are now mobilizing to do the EU’s bidding in forcing Britain to nullify the Brexit process and eventually stay a part of the European Union.

After yesterday’s thumping of May’s Brexit plan in parliament, The Times’ Matthew Parris is now openly floating the idea that “it’s time for parliament to wrest control from the zombies, stating that “Theresa May isn’t any good” and “Jeremy Corbyn is equally useless”…

There exists no leadership in either the government or the opposition capable of taking us through this mess. No hidden strengths, no unexpected qualities; no whizzbang new thinking, no magic. Forget May. Forget Corbyn. Salvation is not coming from these directions.
So it’s up to parliament. MPs are coming to understand that they have to act. It has been stealing on parliamentarians for months now and close contacts between leading members of both parties have been made and have been deepening.
From within the Commons a shadow executive must emerge, and is beginning to. Labour’s Yvette Cooper talks to the Tories’ Dominic Grieve. Around them is a cluster of senior parliamentarians who are getting used to talking.
A common purpose unites them: rescuing the country from a no-deal Brexit that only a small minority actually want. Whether this is to be done by seeking a better deal than May’s or by a new referendum, or both, they need to find a way soon. An “indicative” vote of the House of Commons may help guide them.
And however speedily the House can find its leadership and direction, it’s hard to imagine this can be done without an extension to the Article 50 negotiating period.
Overwhelmingly, the conclusion to be drawn from last night’s vote is that parliament must wrest control from a zombie prime minister, a zombie cabinet and a zombie opposition. I heard in May’s response to the result the hint of the straw at which she may now clutch: a Labour-style Brexit under a Tory nominal prime minister. I would be amazed if her party would accept it.

The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss the turbulent and uncertain road ahead in the Brexit saga as a March deadline looms.

Shifting sands, and betrayal at the highest level is now crystallizing, as hints of a possible parliamentary coup against May and Corbyn is being floated as a possible solution to the impasse that will ultimately steer the UK back under EU control, and cancel the Brexit referendum.

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Follow The Duran Audio Podcast on Soundcloud.

Via Straits Times

The words “humiliated” and “crushed” featured prominently in British newspaper headlines following Parliament’s massive rejection of a divorce deal with the European Union on Tuesday (Jan 15).

Dailies said Prime Minister Theresa May’s grip on power was waning after the huge vote against the agreement struck between her government and Brussels, as she prepared to fight a no-confidence motion on Wednesday.

“May humiliated by 230 votes,” The Daily Mirror tabloid said.

The Daily Telegraph wrote: “Humiliation for Prime Minister as MPs overwhelmingly reject deal and Labour tables no confidence vote.”

The broadsheet’s parliamentary sketchwriter Michael Deacon said Mrs May had somehow defied the odds by making a historic event an anticlimax.

“Her speech had all the brio of a mouldy gym sock,” he wrote.

“She sounded as winningly persuasive as a mother snapping at her children to eat up their cabbage or go to bed hungry.”

The vote itself “was as if Agatha Christie has allowed Miss Marple to solve the murder half way through and spend the rest of the novel pottering about in the garden”.

‘ZOMBIE PM’

The Times columnist Matthew Parris said it was time for senior MPs to take over the Brexit process.

“There exists no leadership in either the government or the opposition capable of taking us through this mess,” he wrote following the vote.

“Theresa May isn’t any good; she doesn’t have a fiendish, secret strategy; she’s careless with the truth and will say anything to get her through another week. She doesn’t know what to do.

“Overwhelmingly, the conclusion to be drawn… is that Parliament must wrest control from a zombie Prime Minister, a zombie Cabinet and a zombie opposition.”

The Daily Mail said the defeat left Mrs May’s power “hanging by a thread”, calling it a “devastating result, which threatens to plunge the Brexit process into chaos”.

The Sun, Britain’s biggest-selling newspaper, said: “Crushed PM dares MPs to vote for general election after record Brexit defeat.”

“The crushing defeat – which saw 118 Tories turn against the PM – is the worst since the advent of full democracy and suggests Mrs May will never win enough support for her strategy,” said the tabloid.

The Financial Times newspaper ran a headline reading: “May’s defeat spells trouble for the EU’s Brexit approach.”

“Huge loss leaves PM in race against time,” the broadsheet said.

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Ukraine’s Cult of Stepan Bandera: Not a Detail, but a Cornerstone

Unlike Poroshenko with his aerial bombings of the Russian-speaking Donbass in 2014 and 2015, Bandera killed the “wrong” victims, the representatives of those nations that are valued even by the modern Western media.

Dmitry Babich

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Authored by Dmitry Babich via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


During the recent years of the confrontation between Russia and Ukraine, there has been one issue where the Western mainstream press simply cannot fully ignore or reject the Russian arguments. This issue concerns the life and actions of Stepan Bandera (1909-1959) and his followers from what is known as the “Banderite” faction of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN, a far-right organization that took terrorist actions against Polish and Soviet officials from the 1920s to the 1950s and which is now legally protected from any criticism in Ukraine).

THE “WRONG” AND “RIGHT” VICTIMS

Because Bandera was born on January 1, 1909, celebrations of his birthday have become disgusting New Year’s rituals in Ukraine in recent years, with thousands participating in Nazi-style torch-lit marches that include shouted protests against “Putin’s Russia” and rants such as, “Jews out!” which are heard by everyone except the police. This New Year was no exception, since the current Ukrainian government under President Petro Poroshenko (who publicly identified himself as a Banderite after taking office in 2014) officially added Bandera’s 110th birthday to the list of Ukraine’s most important anniversaries. This time, there were several quiet voices of condemnation heard in Poland, Israel, and even the US. Why? In truth, torches, masks, political murders, and mob attacks against “pro-Russian” public figures are nothing new in post-Maidan Ukraine. And these things usually pose no problem for the mainstream press of the US and its allies. So, why is Bandera an exception?

The answer is ethnic, as awful as that may sound. Unlike Poroshenko with his aerial bombings of the Russian-speaking Donbass in 2014 and 2015, Bandera killed the “wrong” victims, the representatives of those nations that are valued even by the modern Western media, with its double and triple standards. In the 1930s Bandera killed Polish officials, in the 1940s his people killed civilian Jews and Polish peasants, and these are groups whose plight even the New York Times cannot ignore today. If Bandera’s infamous slogan “Death to enemies!” had been directed only against “disloyal” Russians and anti-Banderite Ukrainians (the groups currently persecuted by Poroshenko), Bandera would have been no different from his modern admirers in the Ukrainian government. But Bandera’s followers from the OUN decimated the Jewish population of Lvov and Kiev in 1941, trying to curry favor with the advancing Germans. And between 1943 and 1944, the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), taking its orders from Bandera’s OUN officers, ethnically cleansed his native Western Ukraine of ethnic Poles, killing from 70,000-100,000 of them (the infamous “slaughter of Volhynia”). The aim was to create an “ethnically pure” Ukraine before the arrival of the Red Army in late 1944. Documents published by the Polish historian Grzegorz Motyka indicate that Bandera and the OUN hoped that the Red Army would soon be replaced by Anglo-American domination. “His strategy was to clean up the house before the arrival of the real master,” Motyka concludes in his book.

THE LADY OF THE RADA VS. ISRAEL’S PRESIDENT

The American domination took another 70 years, but it did come. And now the Banderites’ (and Poroshenko’s) only historic disagreement with the West is over the infamous “ethnic cleansing,” to which Bandera’s “glorious heroes” subjected Ukraine in 1941-1944. When Israeli President Reuven Rivlin dared to raise the issue during his visit to Ukraine in 2016, he got a scolding from the vice speaker of the Ukrainian parliament (Verkhovna Rada), Irina Gerashchenko: “The Israeli president allowed himself some incorrect and undiplomatic words about the OUN’s tragic history,” Gerashchenko said at the time. “It was highly inappropriate, especially now, when Ukraine is fighting for its independence.” Gerashchenko forgot to mention the fact that Babi Yar, the burial site of some 30,000 Jews killed by German and Ukrainian Nazis in Kiev in 1941, was vandalized nine times between 2015 and 2016, according to data provided by the Ukrainian Jewish Committee.

WHY THE WEST WANTS TO FORGET, BUT CANNOT

In the immediate aftermath of the Maidan coup in 2014, the mainstream press was ready to forget even that, since an honest account of Bandera’s activities between 1939 and 1959 could rekindle memories of the undesirable parallels to the “resistance to Russian occupation” by Poroshenko’s army in the Donbass in 2014 and 2015. Between the summer of 2014 and the winter of 2015, about 10,000 people died there, victims of the aircraft and tanks sent by Poroshenko (just months earlier, the US and the EU had been unable to abide the use of truncheons by the police of the ousted president, Viktor Yanukovych). At the time, the NYT called Bandera the “Ukrainian nationalists’ hero.” Obviously, the NYT’s authors were taking their cues from the Washington Post’s Anne Applebaum, with her Banderite headline, “Nationalism is exactly what Ukraine Needs” in the once-glorious New Republic.

But here the mainstream press tried to kill off a memory that will never die — the memory of how Hitler’s East European Nazi allies participated in the destruction of the region’s Jewish population in the early 1940s. This was something not even Anne Applebaum could make people forget.

In his articles in the American press, the director of the Ukrainian Jewish Committee, Eduard Dolinsky, tried to explain to the American public that Bandera’s cult is not an isolated, unpleasant phenomenon: Stepan Bandera never acted alone, he represented a crudely nationalist ideology. Unfortunately, this ideology reigns triumphant in modern Ukraine behind the “liberal” façade displayed for the West. For example, Dolinsky notes that Poroshenko’s hypocritical speeches memorializing Jewish victims can be heard next to, say, a memorial to OUN activist Ivan Rogach, whose newspaper called Jews “the greatest enemy of the people” in 1941. “The Ukrainian leadership set itself on the course of rehabilitating anti-Semitism and introducing censorship of history,” concludes the official statement of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, an international Jewish human-rights group, famous for its work to bring Nazi criminals to justice.

THE RUSSIAN QUESTION BEHIND THE JEWISH ONE

If the West cannot afford to be completely silent about Bandera’s participation in the Holocaust, it is willingly ignoring another huge injustice that is inseparable from Bandera’s cult in modern Ukraine — the erasure of the Russian and anti-Banderite component of Ukraine’s historic memory. In 2017, Kiev’s Vatutin Avenue was renamed Bandera Avenue, resulting in an outcry in Russia and complete silence in the West. This avenue, a major thoroughfare in the Ukrainian capital, had originally been named in honor of General Nikolai Vatutin, who liberated Kiev from Nazi occupation in 1943 and died in a shootout with the OUN’s guerillas in 1944. At the time, there was no question about where America’s sympathies lay: the fight against Hitler was not yet over, and Vatutin, born in 1901 to a peasant family living immediately adjacent to the future Russian-Ukrainian border, was a useful ally for the United States. Will Bandera and his modern followers be a good replacement? Only someone with Poroshenko’s plans for Ukraine or with Anne Applebaum’s views on history could agree.

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Entering a Major Regional Re-set – The Syria Outcome Will Haunt Those Who Started This War

It should be obvious now that we are entering a major regional re-set.

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Authored by Alastair Crooke via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


The Middle East is metamorphosing. New fault-lines are emerging, yet Trump’s foreign policy ‘hawks’ still try to stage ‘old movies’ in a new ‘theatre’.

The ‘old movie’ is for the US to ‘stand up’ Sunni, Arab states, and lead them towards confronting ‘bad actor’ Iran. ‘Team Bolton’ is reverting back to the old 1996 Clean Break script – as if nothing has changed. State Department officials have been briefing that Secretary Pompeo’s address in Cairo on Thursday was “ slated to tell his audience (although he may not name the former president), that Obama misled the people of the Middle East about the true source of terrorism, including what contributed to the rise of the Islamic State. Pompeo will insist that Iran, a country Obama tried to engage, is the real terrorist culprit. The speech’s drafts also have Pompeo suggesting that Iran could learn from the Saudis about human rights, and the rule of law.”

Well, at least that speech should raise a chuckle around the region. In practice however, the regional fault-line has moved on: It is no longer so much Iran. GCC States have a new agenda, and are now far more concerned to contain Turkey, and to put a halt to Turkish influence spreading throughout the Levant. GCC states fear that President Erdogan, given the emotional and psychological wave of antipathy unleashed by the Khashoggi murder, may be mobilising newly re-energised Muslim Brotherhood, Gulf networks. The aim being to leverage present Gulf economic woes, and the general hollowing out of any broader GCC ‘vision’, in order to undercut the rigid Gulf ‘Arab system’ (tribal monarchy). The Brotherhood favours a soft Islamist reform of the Gulf monarchies – along lines, such as that once advocated by Jamal Khashoggi .

Turkey’s leadership in any case is convinced that it was the UAE (MbZ specifically) that was the author behind the Kurdish buffer being constructed, and mini-state ‘plot’ against Turkey – in conjunction with Israel and the US. Understandably, Gulf states now fear possible Turkish retribution for their weaponising of Kurdish aspirations in this way.

And Turkey is seen (by GCC States) as already working in close co-ordination with fellow Muslim Brotherhood patron and GCC member, Qatar, to divide the collapsing Council. This prefigures a new round to the MB versus Saudi Wahhabism spat for the soul of Sunni Islam.

GGC states therefore, are hoping to stand-up a ‘front’ to balance Turkey in the Levant. And to this end, they are trying to recruit President Assad back into the Arab fold (which is to say, into the Arab League), and to have him act, jointly with them, as an Arab counter to Turkey.

The point here is obvious: President Assad is closely allied to Iran – and so is Moscow and Turkey. To be fashionably Iranophobic – as Pompeo might wish the GCC to be – simply would spoil the GCC’s anti-Turkey ‘play’. Syria indeed may be (justly) skeptical of Turkey’s actions and intent in Syria, but from President Assad’s perspective, Iran and Russia are absolutely crucial to the managing of an erratic Turkey. Turkey does represent an existential Syrian concern. And trying to lever President Assad – or Lebanon or Turkey – away from Iran, would be absurd. It won’t happen. And the GCC states have enough nous to understand this now (after their stinging defeat in Syria). The Gulf anti-Iranian stance has had ‘the burner’ turned sharply down, (except when their need is to stroke US feathers).

They can see clearly that the Master of Ceremonies in the Levant – putting together the new regional ‘order’ – is not Mr Bolton, but Moscow, with Tehran (and occasionally Ankara), playing their equal part ‘from behind the curtain’.

Presumably, America’s intelligence services know, (and Gulf states certainly are aware), that in any case, Iranian forces are almost all gone from Syria (though of course Syria’s ‘Iranian connection’ remains as firm, as ever) – even as Pompeo and Israel say the precisely the opposite: that they are pushing-back hard at the ‘threatening’ Iranian military ‘footprint’ in Syria. Few in the region will believe it.

The second notable emerging regional fault line then, evidently is the one that is opening between Turkey and the US and Israel. Turkey ‘gets it’: Erdogan ‘gets it’ very clearly: that Washington now deeply distrusts him, suspects that Turkey is accelerating into Moscow and Beijing’s orbit, and that DC would be happy to see him gone – and a more NATO-friendly leader installed in his stead.

And it must be clear to Washington too ‘why’ Turkey would be heading ‘East’. Erdogan precisely needs Russia and Iran to act as MCs to moderate his difficult relations with Damascus for the future. Erdogan needs Russia and Iran even more, to broker a suitable political solution to the Kurds in Syria. He needs China too, to support his economy.

And Erdogan is fully aware that Israel (more than Gulf States) still hankers after the old Ben Gurion ideal of an ethnic Kurdish state – allied with Israel, and sitting atop major oil resources – to be inserted at the very pivot to south-west and central Asia: And at Turkey’s vulnerable underbelly.

The Israeli’s articulated their support for a Kurdish state quite plainly at the time of Barzani’s failed independence initiative in Iraq. But Erdogan simply, unmistakably, has said to this ‘never’ (to Bolton, this week). Nonetheless, Ankara still needs Russian and Iranian collaboration to allow Bolton to ‘climb down his tree’ of a Kurdish mini-state in Syria. He needs Russia to broker a Syrian-led buffer, vice an American-Kurdish tourniquet, strapped around his southern border.

It is unlikely however, that despite the real threat that America’s arming of the Kurds poses to Turkey, that Erdogan really wants to invade Syria – though he threatens it – and though John Bolton’s ‘conditions’ may end by leaving Turkey no option, but to do it. Since, for sure, Erdogan understands that a messy Turkish invasion of Syria would send the delicately balanced Turkish Lire into free-fall.

Still … Turkey, Syria, Iran and Russia now all want America gone from Syria. And for a moment, it seemed it might proceed smoothly after Trump had acquiesced to Erdogan’s arguments, during their celebrated telephone call. But then – Senator Lindsay Graham demurred (against the backdrop of massed howls of anguish issuing from the Beltway foreign policy think-tanks). Bolton did the walk-back, by making US withdrawal from Syria contingent on conditions (ones seemingly designed not to be met) and not tied any specific timeline. President Erdogan was not amused.

It should be obvious now that we are entering a major regional re-set: The US is leaving Syria. Bolton’s attempted withdrawal-reversal has been rebuffed. And the US, in any event, forfeited the confidence of the Kurds in consequence to the original Trump statement. The Kurds now are orientated toward Damascus and Russia is mediating a settlement.

It may take a while, but the US is going. Kurdish forces (other than those linked with the PKK) are likely to be assimilated into the Syrian army, and the ‘buffer’ will not be directed against Turkey, but will be a mix of Syrian army and Kurdish elements – under Syrian command – but whose overall conduct towards Turkey will be invigilated by Russia. And the Syrian army will, in due time, clear Idlib from a resurgent al-Qaida (HTS).

The Arab states are returning to their embassies in Damascus – partly out of fear that the whipsaw of American policy, its radical polarisation, and its proclivity to be wholly or partially ‘walked-back’ by the Deep State – might leave the Gulf unexpectedly ‘orphaned’ at any time. In effect, the GCC states are ‘hedging’ against this risk by trying to reconnect a bifurcated Arab sphere, and to give it a new ‘purpose’ and credibility – as a balance against Turkey, Qatar and the Muslim Brotherhood (Syria’s old nemesis).

And yet – there remains still another layer to this calculus, as described by veteran Middle East journalist, Elijah Magnier:

“Indeed the Levant is returning to the centre of Middle East and world attention in a stronger position than in 2011. Syria has advanced precision missiles that can hit any building in Israel. Assad also has an air defence system he would have never dreamed of before 2011 – thanks to Israel’s continuous violation of its airspace, and its defiance of Russian authority. Hezbollah has constructed bases for its long and medium range precision missiles in the mountains and has created a bond with Syria that it could never have established – if not for the war. Iran has established a strategic brotherhood with Syria, thanks to its role in defeating the regime change plan.

NATO’s support for the growth of ISIS has created a bond between Syria and Iraq that no Muslim or Baathist link could ever have created: Iraq has a “carte blanche” to bomb ISIS locations in Syria without the consent of the Syrian leadership, and the Iraqi security forces can walk into Syria anytime they see fit to fight ISIS. The anti-Israel axis has never been stronger than it is today. That is the result of 2011-2018 war imposed on Syria”.

Yes. This is the third of the newly emergent fault-lines: that of Israel on the one hand, and the emerging reality in the Syrian north, on the other – a shadow that has returned to haunt the original instigators of the ‘war’ to undermine Syria. PM Netanyahu since has put all the Israeli eggs into the Trump family ‘basket’. It was Netanyahu’s relationship with Trump which was presented in Israel as being the true ‘Deal of the Century’ (and not the Palestinian one). Yet when Bibi complained forcefully about US withdrawal from Syria (leaving Syria vulnerable, Netanyahu asserts, to an Iranian insertion of smart missiles), Trump nonchalantly replied that the US gives Israel $ 4.5 billion per year – “You’ll be all right”, Trump riposted.

It was seen in Israel as an extraordinary slap to the PM’s face. But Israelis cannot avoid, but to acknowledge, some responsibility for creating precisely the circumstances of which they now loudly complain.

Bottom line: Things have not gone according to plan: America is not shaping the new Levantine ‘order’ – Moscow is. And Israel’s continual, blatant disregard of Russia’s own interests in the Levant, firstly infuriated, and finally has provoked the Russian high command into declaring the northern Middle East a putative no-fly zone for Israel. This represents a major strategic reversal for Netanyahu (and the US).

And finally, it is this repeating pattern of statements being made by the US President on foreign policy that are then almost casually contradicted, or ‘conditioned’, by some or other part of the US bureaucracy, that poses to the region (and beyond) the sixty-four-thousand-dollar question. The pattern clearly is one of an isolated President, with officials emptying his statements of executive authority (until subsequently endorsed, or denied, by the US bureaucracy). It is making Trump almost irrelevant (in terms of the setting of foreign policy).

Is this then a stealth process – knowingly contrived – incrementally to remove Trump from power? A hollowing out of his Presidential prerogatives (leaving him only as a disruptive Twitterer) – achieved, without all the disruption and mess, of formally removing him from office? We shall see.

And what next? Well, as Simon Henderson observes, no one is sure – everyone is left wondering:

“What’s up with Secretary Pompeo’s extended tour of the Middle East? The short answer is that he is trying to sell/explain President Trump’s “we are leaving Syria” policy to America’s friends … Amman, Jordan; Cairo, Egypt; Manama, Bahrain; Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE); Doha, Qatar; Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; Muscat, Oman; Kuwait City, Kuwait. Wow, even with his own jet and no immigration hassles, that’s an exhausting itinerary … The fact that there now are eight stops in eight days, probably reflects the amount of explaining that needs to be done.”

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