Connect with us

Latest

Analysis

News

CONFIRMED: Trump Dossier is basis of RussiaGate

Former Trump campaign official Carter Page confirms FBI relying on Trump Dossier to conduct Russiagate investigation

Alexander Mercouris

Published

on

6,428 Views

Back in March 2017 a series of articles appeared in the media which alleged that the ‘frame’ for the Russiagate investigation was provided by the Trump Dossier: the sleazy concoction of smear and gossip compiled by the British ex-spy Christopher Steele.

In an article 31st March 2017 I expressed some skepticism about this.  The scenario outlined in the Trump Dossier seemed to me quite simply too absurd and its unverifiable claims altogether too sensational for me to believe the supposedly mighty US intelligence community could take it seriously.

However by June 2017 indirect confirmation was starting to appear in the US media that not only did the US intelligence community take the Trump Dossier seriously but that it was in fact the starting point of the whole Russiagate scandal.

Here is what I said about this in an article I wrote on 24th Jun3 2017

On 11th January 2017, shortly after publication of the now notorious Trump Dossier, I speculated that this obviously fictitious document might have been the cause of the whole Russiagate scandal.

After carefully explaining why the document is certainly a fiction I made the following point

The big question is not whether the facts in this dossier are true or not; it is the extent to which the paranoid claims made in the dossier have shaped and might even have been the origin for the whole Russian hacking scandal.

I say this because media reports confirm that the dossier or extracts from it have circulated amongst US politicians (including Hillary Clinton and John McCain), US intelligence agencies, and within the media for weeks if not months.
The earliest reports in the dossier are dated to July, which suggests that some of its claims – which include circumstantial details of who supposedly within the Russian government was behind the Clinton leaks – were already circulating early in the summer. That is a very early point in the Russian hacking story, making it at least possible that the dossier at least influenced the thinking of some of the people in the US intelligence community and in the media who have been pushing the Russian hacking scandal most aggressively.

Many have remarked on the absence of evidence in the ONDI report which was published last Friday. Even Masha Gessen – one of President Putin’s most relentless critics – has pointed this out.

Publication of this dossier looks like an attempt to provide “evidence” which the ODNI report failed to do. If so then that at least gives rise to the possibility that the dossier is the “evidence” – or more correctly a part of the evidence – that formed the background to the ONDI report but which the ODNI report omitted.

Whatever the truth of this, the fact that an obviously concocted dossier like this has circulated for weeks if not months with its source apparently still considered “unimpeachable” and “reliable” by the West’s intelligence agencies shows how wildly paranoid and ignorant about Russia the West’s intelligence agencies and its politicians and journalists have become.

An Important Message from the Editor of The Duran

Fantasy has replaced truth, and it seems that a clever fabricator out to make money has successfully cashed in on it, quite possibly doing serious harm along the way.

My speculation that the Trump Dossier is the original cause of the whole Russiagate scandal has now received dramatic confirmation from a massive article in the Washington Post about the Russiagate scandal, which though it never specifically refers to the Trump Dossier, makes it quite clear that the Russiagate scandal is based on it.

According to the Washington Post article in August 2016 the CIA received secret but supposedly conclusive intelligence that Russian President Putin was seeking to swing the US Presidential election to Donald Trump.  CIA Director Brennan was supposedly so concerned that he immediately sent a secret memorandum advising President Obama of this.

This is how the Washington Post describes it

Early last August, an envelope with extraordinary handling restrictions arrived at the White House. Sent by courier from the CIA, it carried “eyes only” instructions that its contents be shown to just four people: President Barack Obama and three senior aides.

Inside was an intelligence bombshell, a report drawn from sourcing deep inside the Russian government that detailed Russian President Vladi­mir Putin’s direct involvement in a cyber campaign to disrupt and discredit the U.S. presidential race.

But it went further. The intelligence captured Putin’s specific instructions on the operation’s audacious objectives — defeat or at least damage the Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, and help elect her opponent, Donald Trump…..

The CIA breakthrough came at a stage of the presidential campaign when Trump had secured the GOP nomination but was still regarded as a distant long shot. Clinton held comfortable leads in major polls, and Obama expected that he would be transferring power to someone who had served in his Cabinet.

The intelligence on Putin was extraordinary on multiple levels, including as a feat of espionage.

For spy agencies, gaining insights into the intentions of foreign leaders is among the highest priorities. But Putin is a remarkably elusive target. A former KGB officer, he takes extreme precautions to guard against surveillance, rarely communicating by phone or computer, always running sensitive state business from deep within the confines of the Kremlin

(bold italics added)

That this refers to the Trump Dossier is clear from the highlighted words.

The Trump Dossier purports to be a “report drawn from sourcing deep inside the Russian government that detailed Russian President Vladimir Putin’s direct involvement in a cyber campaign to disrupt and discredit the US Presidential race”, which is exactly what the report mentioned in the article is said to be.

The timing is right, with the early parts of the Trump Dossier dated to June 2016 and Brennan sending out his memorandum to Obama in August 2016.

No other report other than the Trump Dossier fitting the description of the report in the Washington Post article is known to exist, and the Washington Post article says that “Putin is a remarkably elusive target”, which makes it all but certain that no other such report exists.

Moreover the Washington Post article slips out these further very interesting comments about the report mentioned in the article

Despite the intelligence the CIA had produced, other agencies were slower to endorse a conclusion that Putin was personally directing the operation and wanted to help Trump. “It was definitely compelling, but it was not definitive,” said one senior administration official. “We needed more.”

Some of the most critical technical intelligence on Russia came from another country, officials said. Because of the source of the material, the NSA was reluctant to view it with high confidence.

(bold italics added)

The Trump Dossier is not a US confection but was compiled by Christopher Steele, who is British, and who is a former agent of the British intelligence agency MI6.  The fact that the Washington Post story says that “the most critical technical intelligence on Russia came from another country” therefore again clearly points to the Trump Dossier, which originated not in the US but in Britain.

In light of these comments I do not think there is any doubt that it is the early sections of the Trump Dossier that are being referred to, and which were what caused Brennan to send his memorandum to the White House in August.

Final and conclusive confirmation that the Trump Dossier is indeed the key document behind the whole Russiagate investigation has now been provided by Carter Page, the Trump campaign foreign policy adviser who is repeatedly named in the Trump Dossier and who is at the centre of the Russiagate investigation.

Here is what Carter Page had to say about this in Congressional testimony as reported by the Washington Times

The congressional testimony of Trump-Russia figure Carter Page shows that a Democratic-financed dossier can dominate how FBI agents question witnesses.

Mr. Page testified Nov. 2 before the House intelligence committee, which released a transcript Monday evening.

Rep. Trey Gowdy, South Carolina Republican, was particularly interested in how the FBI is conducting its probe of supposed Russian collusion with the Trump campaign.

 “So what were the questions the FBI had for you?” Mr. Gowdy said.

“It was an extensive series of many meetings, but they, you know, the core foundation, I would say, in terms of the overall structure in March 2017, was related to those false allegations from the ‘dodgy’ dossier,” Mr. Page said, using his moniker for the anti-Trump document……

Asked at the Nov. 2 hearing how many times he sat down with the FBIMr. Page said, “Approximately four. They came up — you know, typically when the FBI has reached out to me previously, they give me a call. This time, in early March 2017, they just showed up. I was in the lobby near Lincoln Center in the Upper West Side of Manhattan, and they just walked up to me.”

When Mr. Gowdy asked if all the FBI questions pertained to the dossier, Mr. Page said, “Not all of [them], but I would say that that was a central foundation, and again, it would sort of branch out from there.”

The Washington Times also reports Carter Page strongly denied in his testimony the allegations about him which appear in the Trump Dossier

Mr. Steele accuses him (Carter Page – AM) of several felonies, such as meeting with sanctioned Kremlin figures while in Moscow in July 2016 to address the New Economic School. Mr. Steele said Mr. Carter promised to work to end U.S. sanctions against Russia in exchange for a brokerage commission. The dossier also said he and former Trump campaign Chairman Paul Manafort orchestrated the Russian interference to include hacking Democratic Party computers.

Mr. Page, a Trump campaign volunteer on national security, says that all of those charges are fiction. He never met the two Kremlin operatives and has never met Mr. Manafort……

“They are all untrue,” Mr. Page said. “Every word in that about me is completely false. The core allegations of that document were certainly all false.”….

Rep. Adam B. Schiff of California, the House intelligence committee’s top Democrat, has shown no qualms about citing opposition research from Kremlin sources. He has expressed admiration for Mr. Steele, and has quoted at length from the dossier, including the unproven charges against Mr. Page.

Mr. Schiff used the hearing to ask Mr. Page about every Russian he met during his July trip to Moscow. He also tried to link him to George Papadopoulos, a Trump campaign volunteer who lived in London at the time.

Mr. Papadopoulos pleaded guilty to lying to an FBI agent about when he actually started working for the campaign as he reached out to Russia-connected people.

“Just to be very clear, every meeting I ever had in Russia was completely benign,” Mr. Page said. “It was nothing, you know, nothing I would be ashamed of having broadcast on national television because, again, I’ve never done anything wrong, not only in those two years but throughout my life.”

Mr. Schiff referred repeatedly to the dossier, especially the part that said Mr. Page met with Igor Sechin, the CEO of giant oil firm Rosneft. Mr. Steele said the two met to discuss removing U.S. sanctions.

Mr. Page said he has never met Mr. Sechin.

In a separate article the Washington Times – one of the very few newspapers in the US to express skepticism about the Russiagate allegations – has provided an interesting account of the notorious 6th January 2017 meeting between the then President elect Donald Trump and President Obama’s intelligence chiefs including James Clapper, CIA Director John Brennan and FBI Director James Comey.

The article all but confirms my theory that Trump was shown the not yet publicly released Trump Dossier during this meeting in an attempt by the intelligence chiefs to blackmail him into accepting their otherwise unsubstantiated claims that it was the Russians who hacked the DNC’s and John Podesta’s computers and who provided the emails stolen from those computers to Wikileaks.

The Washington Times article speaks of the bafflement and anger of the intelligence chiefs as Trump rejected their findings

The atmosphere was not amicable. Simply put, the president-elect and President Obama’s intelligence chiefs “hated each other,” said a former official who worked with both camps…..

To the Obama-era intelligence chiefs, figures at the top of the Washington establishment who, despite being political appointees considered themselves above partisanship, Mr. Trump’s questioning of their conclusions and his overall hatred of Washington were unfathomable.

In interviews, current and former intelligence officials who have worked for both Republican and Democratic administrations said they were astounded that America had elected for the first time in its 240-year history a president with no government or military experience.

A day before heading to Trump Tower in early January, Mr. Clapper told the Senate Armed Services Committee that policymakers, and especially “Policymaker No. 1,” should have healthy skepticism toward the intelligence community……

That their findings were however unsubstantiated the Washington Times reports that even US intelligence veterans have confirmed

In interviews The Washington Times conducted with more than a dozen U.S. intelligence and national security sources at the highest levels as well as foreign diplomats, the overlooked and disturbing question about the lack of evidence has emerged repeatedly.

“I actually called them both the day after it came out and asked, ‘Why was it so thin?’” said the source close to Mr. Clapper and Mr. Brennan. “The answer I got was simple: There was a serious counterintelligence operation going on.”

In the absence of any evidence to back their claims the US intelligence chiefs were forced to resort to blackmail to try to get Trump to accept their conclusions

One of the intelligence community’s specialties is the use of psychological tactics to negotiate and interrogate in classic “good cop/bad cop” fashion. But Mr. Trump’s reaction to the news they brought him on Jan. 6 astonished them…..

A source who knows Mr. Comey, Mr. Clapper and Mr. Brennan told The Times that all three were perplexed during the aftermath of the meeting at Trump Tower, where Mr. Trump had dismissed their premise outright and declared to them, “We don’t have a Russia problem; we have a cyber problem.”

It’s still unclear whether the intelligence chiefs were using the briefing to examine, as they saw it, what the president-elect may have known of Russia’s meddling on his behalf.

After the initial meeting with Mr. Trump broke up, Mr. Comey remained behind to brief the president-elect further.

The FBI director, who at 6 feet 8 inches tall towered over Mr. Trump by 6 inches, has since revealed how he stayed for a private discussion with the president-elect to review some “personally sensitive” information that the intelligence chiefs hadn’t included in the public version of the Russian meddling assessment.

Mr. Comey told lawmakers in June that the “sensitive” material in question consisted of portions of what would later become known as the Trump-Russia dossier, financed in part by the Clinton campaign and Democratic Party and compiled by former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele.

Full of unverified claims, the dossier, among other things, maintained that Russian intelligence had schemed to get Mr. Trump elected and that Kremlin spies had compiled sexual blackmail material on him during a 2013 trip he made to Moscow for the Miss Universe beauty pageant.

In his June testimony before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Mr. Comey maintained that Mr. Clapper had asked him to be alone with Mr. Trump to “personally do this portion of the briefing” for two reasons.

The first was that among those in the Obama-era intelligence inner circle who were present at Trump Tower that day, Mr. Comey was the one who would be staying on at his position and would have dealings with the new president, given the nominal 10-year term FBI directors are given.

The second, according to Mr. Comey’s testimony, was because “the material implicated the FBI’s counterintelligence responsibilities.”

“It is important to understand that FBI counterintelligence investigations are different than the more commonly known criminal investigative work,” said the former FBI director, implying that the entire meeting at Trump Tower that day was actually part of a high-stakes espionage operation.

Mr. Comey’s comments — vague as they may have sounded in Senate testimony — turned heads in the back hallways of America’s spy agencies.

What exactly was he getting at? Was he publicly revealing that there were serious concerns at the highest levels of U.S. intelligence that the president-elect may truly have been compromised by the Russians and could be vulnerable to Kremlin blackmail?

Note the careful use of the word “blackmail” in the very last paragraph of the above extract from an article put together – as the Washington Times claims – from discussions with “a dozen US intelligence and national security sources” one of whom the Washington Times was apparently sufficiently close to Clapper and Brannon to question them about the lack of the evidence in the January ODNI report the day after it was published.

In the event – as I discussed at the time – the blackmail attempt failed.

Since then – having launched the Russiagate investigate and carried out surveillance of members of the Trump campaign on the strength of the Trump Dossier, and having tried and failed to blackmail Trump by showing it to him – the US intelligence community – first and foremost the FBI – have been working overtime to try to prove it true.  Needless to say ten months later its efforts have proved fruitless for the simple reason that what this “Democrat funded document” says is not true.

In the meantime innocent people like Carter Page are being put through the grinder.

By his own account Carter Page has been interrogated by the FBI four times and has had his documents seized in illegal searches.  He has been forced to give evidence to the House Intelligence Committee, his business has collapsed, and by his own account he is receiving death threats.

Carter Page inflated his own importance in the Trump campaign in order to wangle invitations from the Russians and to secure himself an invitation to Moscow’s New Economic School where he gave a speech.

He is not however the first person to do this and there is no evidence he either intended or did any harm.

As in the very similar case of George Papadopoulos – charged and bullied into into a guilty plea because he downplayed the extent of his perfectly innocent meetings with the staff members of a Moscow-based NGO, and because he mixed up the dates of his first meeting with a ‘London based professor’ – the treatment of Carter Page is grossly disproportionately and frankly cruel.

It is disturbing that no-one in authority in the US seems to care about that.

Liked it? Take a second to support The Duran on Patreon!
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

avatar
  Subscribe  
Notify of

Latest

‘I will take over as Brexit Party leader’: Nigel Farage back on the frontline

Nigel Farage says that if the UK takes part in European elections, he will lead his new Brexit Party.

RT

Published

on

By

Via RT


Former UKIP leader Nigel Farage has announced that he will lead his new Brexit Party into the European elections if UK MPs decide to delay Brexit beyond May 22.

Farage, who has ostensibly appointed himself leader, told various media, including the BBC and Sky News on Friday morning: “I will take over as leader of the Brexit Party and lead it into the European Elections.”

It comes after the Brexit Party’s leader, Catherine Blaiklock, quit over a series of alleged Islamophobic statements and retweets of far-right figures on social media.

It is not yet thought that Farage has officially been elected as leader, as the party does not, as yet, have a formal infrastructure to conduct such a vote.

The right-wing MEP vowed to put out a whole host of Brexit Party candidates if the UK participates in the upcoming EU elections in May, adding: “If we fight those elections, we will fight them on trust.”

On Thursday night, the EU agreed to PM May’s request for a delaying to Brexit beyond the March 29 deadline. Brussels announced two new exit dates depending on what happens next week in the UK parliament.

The UK will have to leave the bloc on April 12 unless British MPs agree to May’s Brexit deal. If the withdrawal agreement is passed by next week, EU leaders have agreed to grant an extension until May 22.

Liked it? Take a second to support The Duran on Patreon!
Continue Reading

Latest

Baltics cannot rely on Germany any more

The matter is NATO today is not as strong as it is supposed to be. And it is not only because of leadership blunders.

The Duran

Published

on

Submitted by Adomas Abromaitis…

On March 29 Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia will celebrate 15 years of becoming NATO member states. The way to the alliance membership was not simple for newly born independent countries. They have reached great success in fulfilling many of NATO demands: they have considerably increased their defence expenditures, renewed armaments and increased the number of military personnel.

In turn, they get used to rely on more powerful member states, their advice, help and even decision making. All these 15 years they felt more or less safe because of proclaimed European NATO allies’ capabilities.

Unfortunately, now it is high time to doubt. The matter is NATO today is not as strong as it supposed to be. And it is not only because of leadership’s blunders. Every member state does a bit. As for the Baltic states, they are particularly vulnerable, because they fully depend on other NATO member states in their defence. Thus, Germany, Canada and Britain are leading nations of the NATO battle group stationed in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia respectively.

But the state of national armed forces in Germany, for example, raises doubts and makes it impossible not only defend the Baltics against Russia, but Germany itself.

It turned out, that Germany itself remains dissatisfied with its combat readiness and minister of defence’s ability to perform her duties. Things are so bad, that the military’s annual readiness report would be kept classified for the first time for “security reasons.”

“Apparently the readiness of the Bundeswehr is so bad that the public should not be allowed to know about it,” said Tobias Lindner, a Greens member who serves on the budget and defense committees.

Inspector General Eberhard Zorn said (https://www.reuters.com/article/us-germany-arms/germany-not-satisfied-with-readiness-of-submarines-some-aircraft-idUSKBN1QS1G7) the average readiness of the country’s nearly 10,000 weapons systems stood at about 70 percent in 2018, which meant Germany was able to fulfill its military obligations despite increasing responsibilities.

No overall comparison figure was available for 2017, but last year’s report revealed readiness rates of under 50 percent for specific weapons such as the aging CH-53 heavy-lift helicopters and the Tornado fighter jets.

Zorn said this year’s report was more comprehensive and included details on five main weapons systems used by the cyber command, and eight arms critical for NATO’s high readiness task force, which Germany heads this year.

“The overall view allows such concrete conclusions about the current readiness of the Bundeswehr that knowledge by unauthorized individuals would harm the security interests of the Federal Republic of Germany,” he wrote.

Critics are sure of incompetence of the Federal Minister of Defence, Ursula von der Leyen. Though she has occupied the upper echelons of German politics for 14 years now — and shows no sign of success. This mother of seven, gynecologist by profession, by some miracle for a long time has been remaining in power, though has no trust even among German military elites. Despite numerous scandals she tries to manage the Armed Forces as a housewife does and, of course, the results are devastating for German military capabilities. The same statement could be easily apply for the Baltic States, which highly dependent on Germany in military sphere.

Liked it? Take a second to support The Duran on Patreon!
Continue Reading

Latest

Crimea: The Geopolitical Jewel Russia Continues to Polish

As Putin continues to polish his Black Sea jewel, Europe has to decide if it is going to continue playing the U.S’s games over Ukraine or begin the next phase of its independence.

Published

on

Authored by Tom Luongo via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


With all that is happening in the world Crimea has taken a bit of a backseat recently. Yes, the US, EU and Canada just added more sanctions on Russia via the odious Magnitsky legislation but this is inconsequential.

There’s been a flurry of good news coming out of Crimea and the Black Sea recently that bears discussion. Let’s start with the most important. President Vladimir Putin was in Crimea earlier this week to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the peninsula’s reunification with Russia. There he also officially inaugurated two major upgrades to Crimea’s power grid.

Located in Simferopol and Sevastopol, two new power plants will produce 940 megawatts and secure Crimea’s energy needs for now and into the future.

Power has been Crimea’s Achilles’ heel since breaking off from Ukraine in 2014. It received almost 90% of its power from the mainland. In November 2015, the trunk lines into Crimea were sabotaged by Ukrainian nationalist radicals, encouraged by President Petro Poroshenko plunging it into darkness as winter took hold.

Does this sound familiar? A place that defies US edicts geopolitically is first hit with a full trade embargo, sanctions and threatened militarily by proxies before having its electricity shut off?

*Cough* Venezuela *Cough*

And there are reports that the US has game-planned a similar fate for Iran as well. For Crimea it was easy because of the single-point-of-failure, the trunks from the mainland. For Venezuela it was as well, with the Guri dam, which affected nearly 70 percent of the country.

So, Putin timing the fifth anniversary of reunification with the announcement of the plants moving to full operational status was yet another smooth bit of international political maneuvering.

A not-so-subtle poke in the eye of the Gang Who Can’t Sanction Straight in D.C. as well as lame duck Poroshenko. Elections are at the end of the month and this celebration by Russia and Crimea will not sit well with many Ukrainians, especially the diaspora here in the US which is virulently anti-Putin in my experience.

Secure and stable power generation is a hallmark of a first world territory. Without that economic growth and stability are impossible. This is why to first help stabilize the situation in Crimea after the blackout Russia brought in 400 MW of power across the Kerch Strait from Krasnodor.

Tying Crimea to the mainland via the Kerch Strait bridge was a masterstroke by Putin. The initial power lines were simply a necessity. For those that complain he isn’t doing enough to counter US and European aggression need only look at the Kerch Strait bridge.

Not only did the Russians not seek international approval given the nearly universal refusal to recognize Crimea as Russian they built the thing in a time frame that defies description.

Imagine if this had been an EU project. They would still be debating the initial engineering plans and the political effects on some protected minority.

Not only does it open up the Eastern Black Sea to trade via Crimea but it ends the use of the Sea of Azov as a potential staging ground for naval provocations as last fall’s incident proved. Ukraine is cut off from acting aggressively and cannot count on any help from the US and Europe.

Moreover, Crimea is now permanently Russia’s. And every bit of infrastructure Russia builds there ties the two further together and weakens any bonds Crimea had with Ukraine. The resultant growth and modernization will make its way, economically and culturally back into southern Ukraine and erode the hard border over time.

This is far more important than striking out and metaphorically punching Poroshenko in the mouth, that many of Putin’s detractors wish for.

Presidents change, after all. Patience and attrition is how you beat an aggressive, distant enemy like the US

To remind everyone just how insane the Trump White House has become on matters international, no less than Vice President Mike Pence lobbied Germany to provoke another naval incident at the Kerch Strait.

If there was ever an example of how little Trump’s gang of moldy neocons think of Europe it is this bit of news. In effect, Pence was saying, “We can’t start a war with Russia because it would go nuclear, but you can because Russia can’t live without your trade.”

This coming after the US unilaterally pulled out of the INF treaty and is now flying nuclear bombers to eastern Europe. The message is clear. If the EU doesn’t get with this open-ended belligerent program against Russia and China of John Bolton’s they will be the ones paying the price when chaos breaks out.

On the other side there is Putin; building bridges, pipelines, power plants and roads.

He’s making it clear what the future holds not only for Europe but the Middle East, central Asia and India. We will defend Crimea at all costs, develop it not only into a tourist destination but also a major trade hub as well.

You are more than welcome to join us. But, we don’t need you.

These power plants will raise Crimea’s power output well beyond its current needs, allowing first export of power as well as providing the foundation for future growth.

And as if it weren’t coordinated in any way, the Chinese, on the morning of Putin’s speech, announced that Crimea would be an excellent fit for investment projects attached to the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

That’s according to the head of the association of Chinese compatriots on the peninsula, Ge Zhili. “Our organization is bolstering cooperation ties, exchanges and friendly contacts with the Crimean society,” he said at an event dedicated to the fifth anniversary of Crimea’s reunification with Russia, which was held in the Russian Embassy in Beijing on Monday.

It is also ready to contribute to the establishment of “reliable partner ties” and the explanation of legal details of business cooperation with Crimea, Ge Zhili said. “The Chinese society hopes for the development of friendly cooperation with Crimea; we are ready to overcome difficulties for fruitful results.”

Again this is a direct challenge to the US who has Crimea under strict sanctions in the West. China is happy now to move forward with integrating Crimea into its plans. It’s just another example of how Russia and China simply ignore Trump’s fulminations and move on.

I can’t wait until I get to write this article all over again, this time about North Korea, now that Bolton has thrown Russian and Chinese assistance in getting North Korea to the negotiating table back in their face by destroying the Hanoi talks.

This announcement is not to be underestimated given that Chinese Premier Xi Jinping is in Rome this week to open up relations with the new Italian government. Five Star Movement’s Leader Luigi Di Maio said he would welcome becoming a part of BRI, much to the consternation of Trump, German Chancellor Angela Merkel as well as his coalition partner Lega Leader Matteo Salvini.

It’s already well known that Salvini is interested in ending sanctions on Crimea and re-opening trade with Russia. Italy is desperate for new markets and opportunities, currently stifled under the euro itself as well as Germany’s insistence on austerity hollowing out Italy’s economy and its future prospects.

These issues as well as energy security ones are coming to a head this year with Brexit, the European Parliamentary elections in May and the completion of the Nordstream 2 pipeline later this year.

As Putin continues to polish his Black Sea jewel, Europe has to decide if it is going to continue playing the U.S’s games over Ukraine or begin the next phase of its independence. Salvini will lead a Euroskeptic revolt within the European Parliament in May. It may be big enough to finally defy Merkel and end EU sanctions on Russia over Crimea.

At that point the US will also have a choice, burn down the world economy with even more sanctions, tariffs and acts of war or accept the facts on the ground.

Liked it? Take a second to support The Duran on Patreon!
Continue Reading

JOIN OUR YOUTUBE CHANNEL

Your donations make all the difference. Together we can expose fake news lies and deliver truth.

Amount to donate in USD$:

5 100

Validating payment information...
Waiting for PayPal...
Validating payment information...
Waiting for PayPal...
Advertisement

Advertisement

Quick Donate

The Duran
EURO
DONATE
Donate a quick 10 spot!
Advertisement
Advertisement

Advertisement

The Duran Newsletter

Trending