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Skripal and Syria… The Imperative of Criminalizing Russia

The reckless haste by which the British authorities are accusing Russia over the Skripal affair, can plausibly be explained by the urgency of the NATO powers to free up their military plans on Syria.

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Authored by Finian Cunningham of the Strategic Culture Foundation:


There is a direct link between Britain’s sensational allegations against Russia in the Skripal affair and NATO’s losing covert war in Syria.

That’s not just the opinion of critical observers. Britain’s ambassador to the United Nations made the explicit link when she called an “emergency meeting” of the Security Council earlier this week.

The Security Council meeting was convened only hours after British counter-terrorism police released video images claiming to identify two Russian men, whom it said were responsible for the alleged poison assassination attempt on former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal in England earlier this year.

The council meeting also followed swiftly on the heels of British Prime Minister Theresa May telling her parliament that the culprits were Russian military intelligence officers acting on orders from the Kremlin. May did not give supporting evidence. It was bald assertion.

In this short clip, Britain’s envoy to the UN Karen Pierce tells reporters the rationale of the British government in convening the emergency session at the Security Council. The envoy reveals more than she intended.

She says that the United Kingdom and its allies would “continue to contest the Russian view of the world in which their state operatives can carry out these sorts of attacks [in England] and can encourage and support the Syrian authorities in their attacks on civilians.”

Pierce added: “So this is actually a continuum, if you like, of contesting that view of the world where you can act outside the norms of international rules and civilized behavior.”

Evidently, the British government is trying to criminalize both Russia and Syria at the same time, over the same alleged crime – unlawful use of chemical weapons.

That would account for why the British authorities have been unduly hasty in accusing the Russian state of culpability in the Skripal affair. By undermining and smearing Russia as a “pariah state”, it is then possible to stifle Russia’s crucial military support for Syria. This is especially urgent given the juncture in the Syria war where NATO-backed militants are staring at final defeat.

The US, Britain and France have all recently threatened to use military power against the Syrian government forces “if” the latter launch chemical weapons attacks. That of course is a cynical pretext for the NATO states to find a legal cover for aggression against Syria.

The allegations of “imminent” chemical weapon use by the Syrian government are also baseless since Damascus no longer possesses any such munitions, or indeed has any military need for such weapons.

What the Skripal affair is therefore trying to do is inculcate in the public mind that Russia has no scruples about using chemical weapons to kill people, which in turn reinforces the notion that Moscow’s Syrian ally also has no scruples about killing people with toxic materials.

The NATO claims of Syrian national forces using chemical weapons have been shown to be false. In recent days, Russian envoy to the UN Vasily Nebenzia demanded that the US present details of a Pentagon target list of chemical weapons sites in Syria. The US balked.

By contrast, there is a healthy skepticism among the Western public about official allegations against the Syrian government. Pink Floyd’s legendary singer-songwriter Roger Waters speaks for many when he recently called out the NATO-backed so-called rescue group, the White Helmets, as being implicated in orchestrating chemical attacks for propaganda purposes.

In order to overcome the propaganda problem of demonizing the Syrian government and giving itself a pretext for launching military strikes on Syria, the NATO powers therefore have to boost their flagging “false flag” narrative of chemical weapons responsibility.

By criminalizing Russia for allegedly using chemical weapons “on the streets of Britain”, it is a ploy to augment the dubious narrative criminalizing Syria.

Here is British envoy Pierce speaking again: “The reason the Security Council has not been able to act on CW [chemical weapon] use in Syria is because of Russia. There is a circularity here. Russia is the key to upholding the universal ban on CW use. And the world would be better if Russia would join us in making that ban absolutely watertight.”

Britain’s use of the word “circularity” is certainly apt – albeit for a completely different reason. The actual circular logic is to criminalize both Russia and Syria over chemical weapons. Russia, it is calculated, will then not have the authority to use its veto power at the Security Council in order to prevent the three NATO powers on the council from launching their much-desired military attack on Syria to salvage their losing covert war.

The reckless haste by which the British authorities are accusing Russia over the Skripal affair – a haste which makes a mockery of legal due process and diplomatic norms – can plausibly be explained by the urgency of the NATO powers to free up their military plans on Syria.

How can the release of video images allegedly of two Russian nationals in Britain be possibly attributed to the Kremlin? Two Russian men – if indeed that is genuine information – are supposed to be “compelling evidence” that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an assassination. It is a preposterous leap of imagination and a travesty of legal process, but it is revealing of an execrable British prejudice of Russophobia.

One possible theory in the Skripal affair is that the two alleged Russian men were members of organized crime. Reports emerged this week that former Russian intelligence agent Sergei Skripal was working with Spanish state security services to crackdown on Russian underworld gangs. It is possible that the gangs uncovered Skripal’s meddling in their illicit business model, and simply sent a couple of heavies over to Britain to deal with him. But how such a hypothetical account can be twisted by the British authorities to be “proof” of Kremlin involvement is a telling question.

It is significant that the British authorities have flatly refused requests from the Russian side for information to identify the alleged Skripal hitmen. For example, British regulations require fingerprints to be submitted by all visitors to the country. Why have the British refused to give fingerprints to Russian authorities which could then lead to an identification and perhaps explanation of the two alleged suspects?

The British don’t want to know the truth, because their official narrative of criminalizing the Russian state is the imperative one. And that is because of the urgency for NATO to find a legal, political cover for its military aggression against Syria.

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TjoeWayne BlowTheCelotajsHideo WatanabeCicero Recent comment authors
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Norwegian
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Norwegian

Thanks for following up on this case. I made the original GIF of the 2 russians at Gatwick airport mentioned in this Duran article http://theduran.com/gatwick-airport-timestamp-cover-up-or-much-ado-about-nothing-video/ I have since reprocessed the same 2 images and produced a better animation, see https://postimg.cc/image/pw7t667ch/ In my opinion, it shows the 2 russions entering the same “tunnel” at different times, implying the evidence was fabricated by the UK authorities, since the time stamps are identical. Notice the metal bars are different on each side. This was obfuscated by image mirroring and rotation. In the GIF processing, one image has been flipped horizontally and rotated, then… Read more »

Normski
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Normski

USA, UK and France are getting really desperate to bomb Syria for any reason they can think of – legal or not!.

a.f.
Guest
a.f.

Russia destroyed Syria, now the West must destroy The Russia

voza0db
Guest
voza0db

If only you were in the piece of land that Russia “destroyed”!

Sean
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Sean

Moron!

Cicero
Guest
Cicero

Are you deluded – it wasnt Russia that imported scores of jihadis to overthrow the government. Russia with Iran & hezbollah have saved the country from what would have been another Libya. US/Israel/Saudis/Turks bear a lot of the responsibility.

Tjoe
Guest
Tjoe

Israel trolls have found Duran again….here we go with the hate and division.

Hideo Watanabe
Guest

Heather Nauert said this yesterday and I took it as a cue to release the staged video by White Helmet. My question is whether FUKUS can really attack Syria or not. I don’t think it will happen because Israel would fall into the most vulnerable situation. To take Israel as a hostage would be a viable strategy for Russia, Iran and Syria to prevent further possible escalation. Israel could be a piece maker to save the face of all parties. “Next, and this is also related to Syria, I’d like to highlight this: The Assad regime and Russia continue to… Read more »

Wayne Blow
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Wayne Blow

You call these scum-bags “heroes”, you are no better than this pile of “shit” GO FU%K yourself ash”hole, like to meet you, “pig slime” !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

TheCelotajs
Guest
TheCelotajs

What I want to know if this is a picture on them in public from a CCTV Camera where is the Date and Timestamp at? All CCTV Cameras have a Date and Timestamp located some where on every frame and some even have a GPS location on them also.

Tjoe
Guest
Tjoe

I notice in the interview of them that they repeat several times that it was sleeting and snowing, so they cut their visit short. Is this picture real…there is no snow and I don’t see it sleeting…or are they in a building?

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Trump Orders Immediate Release Of All Text Messages, Carter Page FISA Application From Russia Investigation

Trump has ordered the DOJ to release all text messages related to the Russia investigation with no redactions.

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Via Zerohedge

President Trump has ordered the Department of Justice to release all text messages related to the Russia investigation with no redactions, of former FBI Director James Comey, his deputy Andrew McCabe, now-fired special agent Peter Strzok, former FBI attorney Lisa Page and twice-demoted DOJ official Bruce Ohr.

Also released will be specific pages from the FBI’s FISA surveillance warrant application on former Trump campaign aide Carter Page, as well as interviews with Ohr.

The statement reads in full:

“At the request of a number of committees of Congress, and for reasons of transparency, the President has directed the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Department of Justice (including the FBI) to provide for the immediate declassification of the following materials: (1) pages 10-12 and 17-34 of the June 2017 application to the FISA court in the matter of Carter W. Page; (2) all FBI reports of interviews with Bruce G. Ohr prepared in connection with the Russia investigation; and (3) all FBI reports of interviews prepared in connection with all Carter Page FISA applications.

In addition, President Donald J. Trump has directed the Department of Justice (including the FBI) to publicly release all text messages relating to the Russia investigation, without redaction, of James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, and Bruce Ohr

***

As we reported last Monday, Trump had been expected to release the documents any time – with specific attention to the Page documents and the “investigative activities of Justice Department lawyer Bruce Ohr” – who was demoted twice for lying about his extensive relationship  with Christopher Steele – the former MI6 spy who assembled the sham “Steele Dossier” used by the FBI in a FISA surveillance application to spy on Page.

Republicans on the House Intelligence and Judiciary committees believe the declassification will permanently taint the Trump-Russia investigation by showing the investigation was illegitimate to begin with. Trump has been hammering the same theme for months.

  • They allege that Bruce Ohr played an improper intermediary role between the Justice Department, British spy Christopher Steele and Fusion GPS — the opposition research firm that produced the Trump-Russia dossier, funded by Democrats. (Ohr’s wife, Nellie, worked for Fusion GPS on Russia-related matters during the presidential election — a fact that Ohr did not disclose on federal forms.)
  • And they further allege that the Obama administration improperly spied on Carter Page — all to take down Trump. –Axios

Ohr, meanwhile, met with Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska in 2015 to discuss helping the FBI with organized crime investigations, according to The Hill‘s John Solomon. The meeting with the Putin ally was facilitated by Steele.

Last month Trump called Ohr a disgrace, while also tweeting: “Will Bruce Ohr, whose family received big money for helping to create the phony, dirty and discredited Dossier, ever be fired from the Jeff Sessions  “Justice” Department? A total joke!”

Trump’s threat came one day after two tweets about Ohr, noting a connection to former FBI agent Peter Strzok, as well as a text sent by Ohr after former FBI Director James Comey was fired in which Ohr says “afraid they will be exposed.”

According to emails turned over to Congressional investigators in August, Christopher Steele was much closer to Bruce Ohr and his wife Nellie than previously disclosed.

Steele and the Ohrs would have breakfast together on July 30, 2016 at the Mayflower Hotel in downtown Washington D.C., days after Steele turned in installments of his infamous “dossier” on July 19 and 26. The breakfast also occurred one day before the FBI formally launched operation “Crossfire Hurricane,” the agency’s counterintelligence operation into the Trump campaign.

“Great to see you and Nellie this morning Bruce,” Steele wrote shortly following their breakfast meeting. “Let’s keep in touch on the substantive issues/s (sic). Glenn is happy to speak to you on this if it would help.”

“After two years of investigations and accusations from both sides of the aisle about what documents indicate, it is past time for documents to be declassified and let the American people decide for themselves if DoJ and FBI acted properly,” Freedom Caucus chairman Mark Meadows told Axios earlier Sunday.

In early August, journalist Paul Sperry tweeted that Trump may use his presidential authority to declassify “20 redacted pages of a June, 2017 FISA renewal, “and possibly” 63 pages of emails and notes between “Ohr & Steele,” and FD-302 summaries of 12 interviews.”

President Trump threatened to declassify documents two weeks ago – one day after the New York Times allegedly published an anonymous Op-Ed claiming to be from a White House official claiming to be part of an unelected “resistance” cabal within the Trump administration.

“The Deep State and the Left, and their vehicle, the Fake News Media, are going Crazy – & they don’t know what to do,” Trump tweeted earlier this month, adding: “The Economy is booming like never before, Jobs are at Historic Highs, soon TWO Supreme Court Justices & maybe Declassification to find Additional Corruption. Wow!”

Trump’s threat comes as calls by frustrated GOP legislators to release the documents have hit a fevered pitch. Spearheading the effort are Republican Reps. Meadows, Jim Jordan, Matt Gaetz and Lee Zeldin – who have repeatedly asked Trump to declassify more of the heavily redacted FISA surveillance warrant on former Trump campaign aide Carter Page in late 2016.

In June, Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee asked President Trump to declassify key sections of Carter Page’s FISA warrant application, according to a letter obtained by Fox News.

Carter Page, the DOJ/FBI’s person of interest, weighed in on the matter in late August, tweeting: “The Corrupt DOJ, co-conspirators in the DNC and their high-priced consultants correctly believed they had American democracy and the FISA Court over a barrel in 2016.”

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De-Dollarization Tops Agenda at Russia’s Eastern Economic Forum

The Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) was held in Vladivostok on Sept.11-13. Founded in 2015, the event has become a platform for planning and launching projects to strengthen business ties in the Asia-Pacific region.

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Via Strategic Culture

This year, the EEF brought together delegations from over 60 countries to discuss the topic “The Far East: Expanding the Range of Possibilities”. A total of 100 business events involving over 6,000 participants were held during the three days.

1,357 media personnel worked to cover the forum. Last year, the number of participants was 5,000 with 1,000 media persons involved in reporting and broadcasting. The EEF-18 gathered 340 foreign and 383 Russian CEOs. Nearly 80 start-ups from across South-East Asia joined the meeting.

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This year, a total of 175 agreements worth of 2.9 trillion rubles (some $4.3 billion) were signed. For comparison, the sum was 2.5 trillion rubles (roughly $3.7 billion) in 2017.

They included the development of the Baimsky ore deposits in Chukotka, the construction of a terminal for Novatek LNG at Bechevinskaya Bay in Kamchatka and the investment of Asian countries in Russia’s agricultural projects in the Far East.

Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), Mail.Ru Group, Megafon and Chinese Alibaba inked an agreement on establishing AliExpress trade joint venture. Rosneft and Chinese CNPC signed an oil exploration agreement.

The Chinese delegation was the largest (1,096 people), followed by the Japanese (570 members). The list of guests included the president of Mongolia and prime ministers of Japan and South Korea.

It was also the first time Chinese President Xi Jinping attended the event to meet his Russian counterpart. The issue of de-dollarization topped the agenda. Russia and China reaffirmed their interest in expanding the use of national currencies in bilateral deals.

During the forum, Kirill Dmitriev, the head of RDIF, said the fund intends to use only national currencies in its transactions with China starting from 2019. It will cooperate with the China Development Bank.

This “yuanification” is making visible progress with Shanghai crude futures increasing their share of oil markets up to 14 percent or even more. China has signed agreements with Canada and Qatar on national currencies exchange.

READ MORE: Eastern Economic Forum opens new chapter in US-Russia dialogue

De-dollarization is a trend that is picking up momentum across the world. A growing number of countries are interested in replacing the dollar. Russia is leading the race to protect itself from fluctuations, storms and US-waged trade wars and sanctions.

Moscow backs non-dollar trade with Ankara amid the ongoing lira crisis. Turkey is switching from the dollar to settlements in national currencies, including its trade with China and other countries. Ditching the US dollar is the issue topping the BRICS agenda. In April, Iran transferred all international payments to the euro.

The voices calling for de-dollarization are getting louder among America’s closest European allies. In August, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas called for the creation of a new payments system independent of the US.

According to him, Europe should not allow the United States to act “over our heads and at our expense.” The official wants to strengthen European autonomy by establishing independent payment channels, creating a European Monetary Fund and building up an independent SWIFT system.

Presenting his annual program, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker called on Sept. 12 for the European Union to promote the euro as a global currency to challenge the dollar.

According to him, “We must do more to allow our single currency to play its full role on the international scene.” Mr. Juncker believes “it is absurd that Europe pays for 80 percent of its energy import bill – worth 300 billion euros a year – in US dollars when only roughly 2 percent of our energy imports come from the United States.” He wants the raft of proposals made in his state of the union address to start being implemented before the European Parliament elections in May.

70% of all world trade transactions account for the dollar, while 20% are  settled in the euro, and the rest falls on the yuan and other Asian currencies. The dollar value is high to make the prices of consumer goods in the US artificially low. The demand for dollars allows refinancing the huge debt at low interest rates. The US policy of trade wars and sanctions has triggered the global process of de-dollarization.

Using punitive measures as a foreign policy tool is like shooting oneself in the foot. It prompts a backlash to undermine the dollar’s status as the world reserve currency – the basis of the US economic might. The aggressive policy undermines the US world standing to make it weaker, not stronger.

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Democrat dirty ‘MeToo’ flavored trick could succeed

Fear of the Left’s “virtue signaling” trick is a real test for the American people, and they are likely to fail without honest critical thought.

Seraphim Hanisch

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The developments of the last-minute sexual allegation against Judge Brett Kavanaugh that was brought up, ostensibly as a last-minute tactic, a dirty trick, to delay or block his confirmation vote to the US Supreme Court.

The issue here is not at all about the doings of a young high-school age man to a girl when she was seventeen, it is a test to see how well the “sexual harassment” card actually works against one of the top players hand-picked by President Trump.

There is absolutely no call to “virtue” at all. All a critical thinker has to do is to consider these points:

  • Consider what side of the aisle this came from: The Democrats. The champions of every perverse sexual desire one can imagine, but dead-set against men being men and women being women.
  • The timing of the release of the allegation: The Democrats deliberately used this as ammo against Kavanaugh. If there was such a concern about the accuser, Christine Blasey Ford (a feminist, as most of these feminists like to go by three names) and her suffering, this would have been broached years ago – after all, she was 17 when it allegedly happened and she is now 36 years older. If #MeToo was really about finding a way to live virtuously, this would have been addressed day zero of Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination.
  • Consider the alignment of the people on the Democrat side AND the Republicans who are now beginning to voice the “need to wait”: Again this is not about any wrong doing being fixed. It is obvious sheer dirty trickery, and in classical liberal style, the “call to virtue” is only that which is politically expedient for the Democrats, the party of gay marriage, child pornography (check WikiLeaks email dump of Hillary Clinton’s advisor John Podesta for that one), spirit dinners (a nice name for what is ostensibly a satanic Black Mass – style ritual, also from Podesta’s group of friends)
  • Last and most important – how does this situation benefit Christine Blasey Ford? – If this is truly an issue that happened (which is apparently showing holes already), then how does taking the Judge down benefit her?
  • Further still, why has this woman allowed herself to be, frankly, used again, but this time by opportunistic politicians?

These points are just a suggested beginning. There are probably hundreds of other things to consider, such as why is this even an issue. A lot of boys made advances on girls in their teenage years, and a lot girls summarily fight them off and win. The snowflakes of the world are loath to admit this, but this is quite frankly a large part of growing up. Granted sometimes it goes too far and someone rapes someone else. That is a terrible thing. But it is also statistically extremely rare, and a randy teenager is hardly a rapist.

This type of “virtue signaling” as it has come to be known is the ultimate in hypocrisy, and it is completely devoid of contact with reality, yet the Congress is wavering on what to do. And why? Because the American male has been successfully cowed by feminist women. He has allowed this from trying to appease and honor such women, but for these women, who consider pregnancy a disease for which abortion is the cure, and who have been brainwashed to consider men the enemy, they greedily took all the power they could.

There is a lot to be said about this on many levels, but the point here is that this sort of manipulation is presently deployed for political reasons and no more. We saw this happen with Judge Roy Moore in January and it worked. And as soon as the Judge was out of the running, the charges magically vanished into the mist. It is being tried again now, and it may work.

This is beyond disgusting – it is actually frightening to consider that such a transparently political allegation may actually defeat a terrific candidate who has categorically and fully denied the allegation.

One one hand, if the nomination falls through, it’s no big deal. President Trump will likely pick Amy Barrett and that will shut down the feminists for a while and probably the whole #MeToo machine.

Unless they determine magically that Mrs. Barrett is a sexual predator. However her seven children are unlikely to support such a crazy idea.

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