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Mohammed Bin Salman: The Unlikely Anti-Oligarchic Bolshevik?

In the heart of petro-capitalism, a revolution is not being televised.

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The young leader devised a brilliant strategy to capture the corrupt Saudi elite and potentially seize billions of dollars’ worth of their assets in an historically unprecedented transfer of wealth from private pockets to public socio-economic programs on the centenary of the Russian Revolution.

What happened over the weekend in Saudi Arabia wasn’t just a “deep state” coup or counter-coup (depending on one’s angle), but a brilliant plan straight out of the movies where an up-and-coming young leader disrupts the entire power structure in his country by jailing its top oligarchs and then redistributing their wealth to the masses via ambitious socio-economic programs.

Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman had to make sure that all of the targeted individuals were in the capital at the same time, which would ordinarily be very difficult to do considering that most of them likely have foreign penthouses and other better priorities than to come together on a random occasion for a cup of tea in the Kingdom.

Considering that he was dealing with oligarchs, however, Mohammed Bin Salman knew that the best way to get them all in one spot was to appeal to their inner greed, and that’s exactly what the recent tech-investment forum in Riyadh accomplished.

Now famous for having been the scene of such headline-grabbing news events as the Crown Prince’s promise to “return to moderate Islam” and “swiftly deal a blow to extremist ideologies”, his announcement of the half-a-trillion-dollar NEOM futuristic city project, and the quirky bestowment of citizenship to a talking female robot, this event also accomplished a more practical objective in drawing all of the country’s oligarchs to the capital where they evidently remained for the past two weeks to follow through on new business deals associated with Mohammed Bin Salman’s ambitious Vision 2030 socio-economic reform program.

The rest is history, but should be seen not only as a muscle-flexing power play by a young future ruler eager to prove his worth on the world stage and anxious to root out all possible internal plots against him, but also as an unprecedented act of populism in jailing some of the world’s most famous oligarchs.

With all due respect to Presidents Putin, Xi, and Trump, none of them have yet to give their masses what they’re craving for in the sense of arresting scores of presumably corrupt and filthy rich individuals, the freezing of their bank accounts, confiscation of their property, and possible redistribution of their wealth if the courts predictably find that some of it was illegally obtained.

Never before in history has one man stood up to so many oligarchs and threatened to take billions of dollars of their wealth, representing a modern-day Robin Hood of sorts regardless of the self-interested “Game of Thrones” reasons behind his decisive move.

In the course of just a few hours, untold billions of dollars effectively landed in Mohammed Bin Salman’s lap, which can be seen as either the world’s largest-ever robbery or its most renegade act of populism, but regardless of the interpretation, the presumed billions that the Crown Prince will likely end up seizing for his government will probably be reinvested in the country through Vision 2030 projects.

Looked at in this way, Mohammed Bin Salman is essentially trying to nationalize billions of dollars of private oligarch wealth in order to subsidize his socio-economic programs, which interestingly carries with it a whiff of communism on almost the exact centenary date of the Russian Revolution.

That’s not to say that the Crown Prince himself or the monarchic system that he presides over is communist, as they’re anything but, though just that it’s unavoidable to compare this in the structural sense to the many communist revolutions of the past century where the state took control of such large amounts of private wealth.

If anything, Mohammed Bin Salman’s forceful tactics and the looming threat that the detainees might be executed for what basically amounts to political and power-grabbing reasons strongly carry with them shadows of the Bolshevik takeover of Russia, with it beginning to look like the young Saudi is actually more of a young Stalin.

In all seriousness though, the Crown Prince is still the de-facto leader of an oil-exporting Gulf Monarchy that aspires to use seized oligarchic wealth to jumpstart a capitalist revolution in his feudal Kingdom, funded to a large degree by the $130 billion of deals clinched with the communist Chinese over the past year, but comparing his anti-oligarchic strategy and Bolshevik-like tactics to the Russian Revolution results in some thought-provoking, if not somewhat entertaining, imagery.

DISCLAIMER: The author writes for this publication in a private capacity which is unrepresentative of anyone or any organization except for his own personal views. Nothing written by the author should ever be conflated with the editorial views or official positions of any other media outlet or institution.

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EU leaders dictate Brexit terms to Theresa May (Video)

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 115.

Alex Christoforou

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The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss how EU leaders have agreed on a plan to delay the the Article 50 process which effectively postpones Brexit beyond the 29 March deadline.

The UK will now be offered a delay until the 22nd of May, only if MPs approve Theresa May’s withdrawal deal next week. If MPs do not approve May’s negotiated deal, then the EU will support a short delay until the 12th of April, allowing the UK extra time to get the deal passed or to “indicate a way forward”.

UK PM Theresa May said there was now a “clear choice” facing MPs, who could vote for a third time on her deal next week.

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Theresa May outlines four Brexit options, via Politico

In a letter to MPs, U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May set out the four options she believes the country has in light of Thursday’s decision by EU leaders to extend the Brexit deadline beyond next Friday.

The U.K. is faced with a four-way choice, May wrote late Friday.

The government could revoke Article 50 — which May called a betrayal of the Brexit vote; leave without a deal on April 12; pass her deal in a vote next week; or, “if it appears that there is not sufficient support” for a vote on her deal in parliament next week or if it is rejected for a third time, she could ask for an extension beyond April 12.

But this would require for the U.K. taking part in European elections in May, which the prime minister said “would be wrong.”

May wrote that she’s hoping for the deal to pass, allowing the U.K. to leave the EU “in an orderly way,” adding “I still believe there is a majority in the House for that course of action.”

“I hope we can all agree that we are now at the moment of decision,” she wrote.

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US media suffers panic attack after Mueller fails to deliver on much-anticipated Trump indictment

Internet mogul Kim Dotcom said it all: “Mueller – The name that ended all mainstream media credibility.”

RT

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Via RT


Important pundits and news networks have served up an impressive display of denials, evasions and on-air strokes after learning that Robert Mueller has ended his probe without issuing a single collusion-related indictment.

The Special Counsel delivered his final report to Attorney General William Barr for review on Friday, with the Justice Department confirming that there will be no further indictments related to the probe. The news dealt a devastating blow to the sensational prophesies of journalists, analysts and entire news networks, who for nearly two years reported ad nauseam that President Donald Trump and his inner circle were just days away from being carted off to prison for conspiring with the Kremlin to interfere in the 2016 presidential election.

Showing true integrity, journalists and television anchors took to Twitter and the airwaves on Friday night to acknowledge that the media severely misreported Donald Trump’s alleged ties to Russia, as well as what Mueller’s probe was likely to find. They are, after all, true professionals.

“How could they let Trump off the hook?” an inconsolable Chris Matthews asked NBC reporter Ken Dilanian during a segment on CNN’s ‘Hardball’.

Dilanian tried to comfort the CNN host with some of his signature NBC punditry.

“My only conclusion is that the president transmitted to Mueller that he would take the Fifth. He would never talk to him and therefore, Mueller decided it wasn’t worth the subpoena fight,” he expertly mused.

Actually, there were several Serious Journalists who used their unsurpassed analytical abilities to conjure up a reason why Mueller didn’t throw the book at Trump, even though the president is clearly a Putin puppet.

“It’s certainly possible that Trump may emerge from this better than many anticipated. However! Consensus has been that Mueller would follow DOJ rules and not indict a sitting president. I.e. it’s also possible his report could be very bad for Trump, despite ‘no more indictments,'” concluded Mark Follman, national affairs editor at Mother Jones, who presumably, and very sadly, was not being facetious.

Revered news organs were quick to artfully modify their expectations regarding Mueller’s findings.

“What is collusion and why is Robert Mueller unlikely to mention it in his report on Trump and Russia?” a Newsweek headline asked following Friday’s tragic announcement.

Three months earlier, Newsweek had meticulously documented all the terrible “collusion” committed by Donald Trump and his inner circle.

But perhaps the most sobering reactions to the no-indictment news came from those who seemed completely unfazed by the fact that Mueller’s investigation, aimed at uncovering a criminal conspiracy between Trump and the Kremlin, ended without digging up a single case of “collusion.”

The denials, evasions and bizarre hot takes are made even more poignant by the fact that just days ago, there was still serious talk about Trump’s entire family being hauled off to prison.

“You can’t blame MSNBC viewers for being confused. They largely kept dissenters from their Trump/Russia spy tale off the air for 2 years. As recently as 2 weeks ago, they had @JohnBrennan strongly suggesting Mueller would indict Trump family members on collusion as his last act,” journalist Glenn Greenwald tweeted.

While the Mueller report has yet to be released to the public, the lack of indictments makes it clear that whatever was found, nothing came close to the vast criminal conspiracy alleged by virtually the entire American media establishment.

“You have been lied to for 2 years by the MSM. No Russian collusion by Trump or anyone else. Who lied? Head of the CIA, NSA,FBI,DOJ, every pundit every anchor. All lies,” wrote conservative activist Chuck Woolery.

Internet mogul Kim Dotcom was more blunt, but said it all: “Mueller – The name that ended all mainstream media credibility.”

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Canadian Lawmaker Accuses Trudeau Of Being A “Fake Feminist” (Video)

Rempel segued to Trudeau’s push to quash an investigation into allegations that he once groped a young journalist early in his political career

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Via Zerohedge

Canada’s feminist-in-chief Justin Trudeau wants to support and empower women…but his support stops at the point where said women start creating problems for his political agenda.

That was the criticism levied against the prime minister on Friday by a conservative lawmaker, who took the PM to task for “muzzling strong, principled women” during a debate in the House of Commons.

“He asked for strong women, and this is what they look like!” said conservative MP Michelle Rempel, referring to the former justice minister and attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould, who has accused Trudeau and his cronies of pushing her out of the cabinet after she refused to grant a deferred prosecution agreement to a Quebec-based engineering firm.

She then accused Trudeau of being a “fake feminist”.

“That’s not what a feminist looks like…Every day that he refuses to allow the attorney general to testify and tell her story is another day he’s a fake feminist!”

Trudeau was so taken aback by Rempel’s tirade, that he apparently forgot which language he should respond in.

But Rempel wasn’t finished. She then segued to Trudeau’s push to quash an investigation into allegations that he once groped a young journalist early in his political career. This from a man who once objected to the continued use of the word “mankind” (suggesting we use “peoplekind” instead).

The conservative opposition then tried to summon Wilson-Raybould to appear before the Commons for another hearing (during her last appearance, she shared her account of how the PM and employees in the PM’s office and privy council barraged her with demands that she quash the government’s pursuit of SNC-Lavalin over charges that the firm bribed Libyan government officials). Wilson-Raybould left the Trudeau cabinet after she was abruptly moved to a different ministerial post – a move that was widely seen as a demotion.

Trudeau has acknowledged that he put in a good word on the firm’s behalf with Wilson-Raybould, but insists that he always maintained the final decision on the case was hers and hers alone.

Fortunately for Canadians who agree with Rempel, it’s very possible that Trudeau – who has so far resisted calls to resign – won’t be in power much longer, as the scandal has cost Trudeau’s liberals the lead in the polls for the October election.

 

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