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War Whore

Tax dollars at work: Pentagon shrugs off $25 billion discrepancy in costs of new bomber

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© AFP
Very little is known about the US Air Force's new long-range strike bomber (LRSB) - including, apparently, the cost. Facing questions over a $25 billion discrepancy in development costs, the Pentagon blamed "human error" and shrugged it off as a "mistake."

The LRSB project is intended to replace the aging and expensive US bomber fleet by the mid-2020s, at the cost of $500 million per plane. Two aerospace conglomerates, Northrop Grumman and Boeing-Lockheed Martin, are bidding for the contract.

Last year, the Air Force told Congress that the 10-year cost of developing the bomber, between 2015 and 2024, would be $33.1 billion. This year, however, the estimate for 2016-2026 rose to $58.2 billion. The 76 percent increase prompted Representative Jackie Speier (D-California), ranking minority member on the House Armed Services oversight and investigations subcommittee, to ask about the $25 billion gap.

"This sudden 76 percent increase in estimated cost is alarming, because it raises questions about the management of a crucial program that lacks transparency, on which we cannot afford serious cost overruns, development errors, and reduced production numbers that would deprive the United States of one of its core military capabilities," wrote Speier.

Light Saber

Russia and China agree on joint funding for high-speed rail line from Moscow to Kazan

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© Alexei Danichev / RIA Novosti
Russia expects the new route to be open in 2020, becoming a role model of Russian-Chinese transport and infrastructure cooperation, said Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"We have already agreed on the parameters of joint funding for the construction of a high-speed route between Moscow and Kazan, and the amount of investment to be provided by our Chinese partners and us will exceed 1 trillion rubles," he said in an interview to TASS and Xinhua on Tuesday.

The 770 km track will stretch through seven regions of Russia. It will have 15 stops, including Vladimir, Nizhny Novgorod, Cheboksary and Kazan. The journey from Moscow to Kazan, currently a 12-hour trip, is to be reduced to 3.5 hours.


Megaphone

Russian military source dismisses reports in Western media of Russian combat aircraft sent to Syria

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© Alaa Al-Faqir / Reuters
Syria, democratized by Amerika
No Russian jets were deployed to Syria in order to launch attacks against Islamic State militants (IS, formerly ISIS, ISIL) and Syrian rebels, a military source told RT, dismissing reports in Israeli media.

"There has been no redeployment of Russian combat aircraft to the Syrian Arab Republic," the source told RT on Tuesday. "The Russian Air Force is at its permanent bases and carrying out normal troop training and combat duty."

On Monday, the Israeli news site Ynet News cited Western diplomats as saying that a Russian "expeditionary force" has arrived in Syria to set up camp at a government airbase near Damascus in order to lead an offensive against IS militants and rebel-aligned targets.

The report added that "thousands of Russian military personnel are set to touch down in Syria, including advisers, instructors, logistics personnel, technical personnel, members of the aerial protection division, and pilots who will operate the aircraft."

Comment: Here's the Ynet report by Fishman.

See also: Russian boots on the ground in Syria? Middle East mayhem intensifies


Bulb

Putin drafts bill to dump dollar from use within Commonwealth of Independent States

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© Alexei Druzhinin / RIA Novosti
Russian President Vladimir Putin has drafted a bill that aims to eliminate the US dollar and the euro from trade between CIS countries.

This means the creation of a single financial market between Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and other countries of the former Soviet Union.

"This would help expand the use of national currencies in foreign trade payments and financial services and thus create preconditions for greater liquidity of domestic currency markets", said a statement from Kremlin.

The bill would also help to facilitate trade in the region and help to achieve macro-economic stability.

Quenelle

Rumors aside, there are many reasons why a post-sanctions Iran won't betray Russia

© Sipa/AP
Some speculation is weaving through the airwaves that once its US-imposed sanctions are lifted in several months, Iran will shift its existing allegiance with Russia and instead double-cross the Great Russian Bear by doing gas and oil export deals that directly undercut Russia, especially Gazprom's Turkish Stream gas pipeline aimed at the southern EU states. Were that to occur, perhaps at the same time a Pentagon and CIA backed rearming of the Ukrainian army and supply of massive heavy artillery to launch a far more effective military assault on the eastern Ukraine self-proclaimed republics, the Washington calculation would be a devastating blow to Putin and Russia's economic stability. No matter what dreams may be floating around the Pentagon however, for many reasons an Iranian double-cross is highly unlikely.

Consequences

First it's useful to ask the hypothetical question were Iran to visibly and massively double-cross Russia, what would be the consequences for Teheran? No doubt one or another Iranian politician or businessman has fantasized about the vast riches that will come from the USA and EU once the de facto 36 year state of war with America and Washington's severe economic sanctions are lifted. Business delegations from several European countries have already been in Teheran talking turkey, that is to say potential huge investment in rebuilding Iran's rundown oil sector and other potential projects.

Comment: The Zionist-Washington axis would no doubt love it if Iran were to shoot itself in the foot and leave Russia to the wolves. As Engdahl points out, it seems highly unlikely, since Iran is fully aware of the real terrorists it has been dealing with.


Quenelle - Golden

Putin: Russia-China ties reach historic levels, hold 'common responsibility for the fate of the world'

© AFP 2015/ KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV
Moscow and Beijing have common economic development targets, a shared view on the history of World War II and a joint responsibility for ensuring global stability, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a written interview with the Russian state news agency TASS and China's Xinhua news agency.

President Putin will visit China on September 2-3 to take part in events dedicated to the 70th anniversary of Japan's surrender in World War II and to discuss bilateral cooperation with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping.

According to the president's aide, Yuri Ushakov, about 30 bilateral documents are scheduled to be signed in Beijing during the president's official visit.

Comment: And Putin isn't just talking the talk - Russia and China are actively thwarting the West's global stranglehold, through every means available:


Bad Guys

Armored vehicles to patrol Kiev to prevent new riots

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© Sputnik / Stringer
Police in the Ukrainian capital will deploy armored vehicles to patrol the center of the city following Monday's violent riots, an adviser to the interior minister said Tuesday.

According to Ivan Varchenko, downtown Kiev will be patrolled by KaAZ and Cougar vehicles, reinforced police units and 2,200 soldiers from the National Guard and volunteer battalions.

Violent clashes between police and protesters on Monday outside the Ukrainian parliament, Verkhovna Rada, killed at least three and injured over 140 people, mostly policemen and National Guard soldiers.

Comment: Poroshenko cannot control situation in Kiev


Attention

Former Greek Foreign Minister claims EU will review sanctions policy, shift focus to cooperation


Pointless, costly, ineffective
The European Union will soon make a U-turn in its approach to Russia, according to the president of the Greek-Eurasian Business Council.

The European Union will soon review its sanctions policy toward Russia and shift its focus to cooperation, president of the Greek-Eurasian Business Council and Greece's former Deputy Foreign Minister Spyros Kouvelis told Sputnik.

"The EU will gradually start reviewing its position towards the sanctions... I believe it is not a thing that will last for a very long time," Kouvelis said.

"The time of the crisis would necessitate the opposite, i.e. the development of collaboration," he added.

He stressed that cooperation with Russia had been made more complicated because of the sanctions, but expressed certainty that it is always possible to find ways of working together, even under such conditions.

Comment: Apparently some EU bureaucrats are finally realizing that current policies, while satisfying to their U.S. masters, do not serve the best interests of Europe. Their negative impact on Russia has been much less than hoped for and has only served to cement bonds between Russia and other BRICS countries.

So Western elites, how's that Russia sanction thing going?


Nuke

German diplomat: US considered nuking Afghanistan after 9/11

© © U.S. National Archives / Reuters
U.S. President George Bush (2nd R) is pictured with Vice President Dick Cheney (R) and senior staff in the President's Emergency Operations Center in Washington in the hours following the September 11, 2001.
A nuclear strike against Afghanistan was on the table in Washington in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, a senior German diplomat told Spiegel magazine.

Michael Steiner, the current German ambassador to India, served as foreign and security policy aide to then-German Chancellor Gerhard Schroder at the time of the 9/11 attacks.

"The papers were written," he said, confirming that the nuclear option was under consideration. "They had really played through all possibilities."

There was a concern in Berlin that the Americans were so shocked by the attacks, which claimed nearly 3,000 lives, that they would overreact, Steiner told the magazine.

He added that he objected to Schroder's plan to express "unconditional support" for the United States, saying no nation should get carte blanche from Germany. The chancellor overturned his objections, Steiner said.

The 9/11 attacks were a turning point for the post-Cold War world, sending the United States on a global war against Islamic terrorism. The invasion of Afghanistan and the ousting of the Taliban from power was the most direct consequence of the attack. It was globally welcomed as a just move, unlike Washington's later war with Iraq, in which several European allies of the US, including Germany, refused to take part.


Comment: There were many direct consequences of the attack, such as the planned conning of "public permission" for a deadly Middle East agenda. Meanwhile, people are still suffering and dying from the toxic dust of this false flag, with nearly 70,000 New Yorkers applying for 9/11 victim compensation (the largest cancer cluster in history) attributed to direct exposure to ionizing radiation from "nuclear sources" within a one-mile area of Ground Zero. Woops. Seems like the Bush/Cheney nuclear option had already been checked off the list!

3700: Number of responders and civilians with 9/11 Ground Zero-linked cancer


Comment: Considering the true source of the 9/11 attack, we should all applaud their considerable restraint...even one hand clapping? ...anyone?


Chess

Russian-American chess grandmaster: Vladimir Putin is America's reluctant foe

Editorial introduction
Lev Alburt will celebrate his 70th birthday in August. His life was divided in two: the first half passed in the Soviet Union, the second is going on in the USA. In his first homeland, the Odessian GM achieved many successes: he was 3-time Ukrainian Champion, a winner and a prize-winner of numerous international competitions, a repeated participant of the USSR Championship finals which were by then the strongest tournaments in the world. In 1979, Alburt, as the saying went, "chose freedom", deciding not to come back from abroad. He has settled down in New York city and has been living there from then on.

As Alburt moved to the USA, he became one of the top American Grandmasters, winning the U.S. Championship three times and representing this country many times at the Olympiads. He is still into chess, being not only a successful coach but also a prolific writer. He is the author of many chess books on various topics, which are being sold in prestigious American and European book shops and could occupy nearly a bookshelf if taken together.

Apart from that, Albert has devoted a lot of his time to fighting Soviet communism. He spent his first-earned US money on a trip to Washington D.C. for the Sakharov Hearings. Whenever he got a chance, he provided his chess colleagues coming to the West with anti-Soviet literature. He participated in different rallies and forums, knew Bukowski and Amalrik, was in correspondence with Solzhenitsyn. He was also a member of organizations that made no secret of their intentions to change the Soviet regime.

Dramatic acceleration of events in his former country the USSR, resulting in its collapse, was quite unexpected for Alburt as well as for many others. These days, 25 years after that sharp turn of history, Lev Alburt is still interested in the world political situation. The fate of his former country still worries him, as well as, of course, the fate of his new homeland. We are presenting the Grand Master's point of view on the matters still very important to him.

Comment: Like Julius Caesar dealing with Pompey and the Optimates before the Civil War, Putin is giving the West every opportunity to make the rational, better choice. But they refuse at every new opportunity. This status quo can only continue for so long...

See also:

Putin's phone call to Obama and its significance

Vladimir Putin's historic defiance of the Anglo-American Axis and their New World 'Order'