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Agence France Press: Putin most influential person on planet

putin
© Sputnik. Sergey Guneev
Russian President Vladimir Putin before delivering State of the Nation address, 2014.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has topped the list of "most influential people of 2014," according to Agence France Presse news agency. About 380 journalists took part in compiling the list of most outstanding personalities of the outgoing year that the agency published on Friday.

"Vladimir Putin tops the chart of most important and influential people of 2014," Agence France Presse said in its comment.

The list of influential people according to the French news agency also includes Pope Francis and a young Pakistani human rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner, Malala Yusufzai; the leader of the protesters in Hong Kong Joshua Wong; schoolgirls from Nigerian district CIBC kidnapped as a result of the attacks attributed to members of the radical Islamist group Boko Haram; parents of executed American journalist James Foley - Diane and John.

Agence France Press is publishing its list of influential people of 2014 for the second consecutive year. The leader of 2013 ratings was a former U.S. intelligence employee Edward Snowden who found shelter in Russia; Iranian Leader Hassan Rouhani and Pakistani human rights activist Malala Yusufzai who remained on the list in 2014.

Comment: Good choice, AFP! The opinion-makers see it (Forbes, AFP), and the people see it. Unfortunately, leaders and the West see it, too, which is why they're trying their best to destroy Putin, his accomplishments and plans for the future of Russia, and his vision of a world not ruled by a pathological elite in the West.

Eye 1

Operation "Trident Lance" - Is Kaliningrad NATO's real target?

Kalinin map
© Unknown
Rick Rozoff's vitally informative site, Stop NATO, just forwarded a Stars and Stripes report on "NATO's largest training exercise since the end of the Cold War".

The forces that took part in the exercise, called "Trident Lance", mostly came from the Joint Multinational Training Center in Grafenwöhr, Germany. Command elements from Poland, Greece and Turkey also took part, while U.S. Army in Europe provided a hefty logistical contribution, the Army newspaper said.

NATO land forces commander Lt. Gen. John Nicholson said that the exercise showed that NATO's Allied Land Command (LANDCOM) has finally reached full operational capacity.

Ready to go!

To go where?
Attention

On the brink of war and economic collapse

Nuclear Armageddon
© www.wired.com
On occasion a reader will ask if I can give readers some good news. The answer is: not unless I lie to you like "your" government and the mainstream media do. If you want faked "good news," you need to retreat into The Matrix. In exchange for less stress and worry, you will be led unknowingly into financial ruin and nuclear armageddon.

If you want to be forewarned, and possibly prepared, for what "your" government is bringing you, and have some small chance of redirecting the course of events, read and support this site.

It is your site. I already know these things. I write for you.

The neoconservatives, a small group of warmongers strongly allied with the military/industrial complex and Israel, gave us Granada and the Contras affair in Nicaragua. President Reagan fired them, and they were prosecuted, but subsequently pardoned by Reagan's successor, George H.W. Bush.

Ensconced in think tanks and protected by Israeli and military/security complex money, the neoconservatives reemerged in the Clinton administration and engineered the breakup of Yugoslavia, the war against Serbia, and the expansion of NATO to Russia's borders.

Neoconservatives dominated the George W. Bush regime. They controlled the Pentagon, the National Security Council, the Office of the Vice President, and much else. Neoconservatives gave us 9/11 and its coverup, the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, the beginning of the destabilizations of Pakistan and Yemen, the U.S. Africa Command, the invasion of South Ossetia by Georgia, the demise of the anti-ABM Treaty, unconstitutional and illegal spying on American citizens without warrants, loss of constitutional protections, torture, and the unaccountability of the executive branch to law, Congress, and the judiciary. In short, the neoconservatives laid the foundation for dictatorship and for WW III.

The Obama regime held no one accountable for the crimes of the Bush regime, thus creating the precedent that the executive branch is above the law. Instead, the Obama regime prosecuted whistleblowers who told the truth about government crimes.
Megaphone

Do they really oppose torture?

© Common Dreams
The Senate Intelligence Committee released its long-awaited report on CIA torture of detainees and the reaction has been strong. While some still maintain that torture is justified, the emerging details of the program have left most of the country disgusted and ashamed.


Comment: The country should be more than disgusted and ashamed. They should be outright furious by now and call for an end to it all!


Many in the current Administration blame the Bush people for this dark chapter, claiming that President Obama finally put an end to what his predecessor started.

Senator John McCain, an advocate for war and an interventionist foreign policy, has nevertheless been one of the strongest voices opposing torture. He has recalled his time as an abused prisoner of war in Vietnam to argue the importance of facing up to the recent behavior of the US government and making necessary corrections.

He said he knows from personal experience that torture does not produce good intelligence, as the victims will say whatever they believe their captors want to hear to gain some relief from their agony. Torture is morally wrong and it doesn't work, he maintains.

Comment: Ron Paul certainly makes a great point. Bringing humanity back as the dominate force in our lives is the only way to put an end to these unnecessary evils in our world. Torture has been used throughout mankind's history and must be brought to an end. Period!

Eye 2

Criminal entity CIA's 9/11 inside job used to justify torture - Torture report a complete whitewash

The words "possible criminal actions" by CIA employees are used in the report.

The terms unethical and immoral are mentioned. The criminality of those who ordered these actions at the highest levels of government, however, is not acknowledged.

The actions directed against alleged jihadists are categorized as ineffective in the process of revealing intelligence. This in itself is a red herring. The objective of torture was not to reveal intelligence.

What of course is not acknowledged is that the alleged terrorists who were tortured were framed by the CIA.

Known and documented the Al Qaeda network is a creation of US intelligence. The jihadists are "intelligence assets". Torture serves to perpetuate the legend that the evil terrorists are real and that the lives of Americans are threatened. Torture is presented as "collateral damage." Torture is an integral part of war propaganda which consists in demonizing the alleged terrorists.
Gear

Useful idiots for the Empire: How Greenpeace wrecked one of the most sacred places in the Americas

Greenpeace can get a little aggressive with its tactics. That doesn't mean that it's not fighting for a good cause! But after the organization marched through the sacred Nazca Lines etched into the Peruvian desert for a climate protest, capturing it all on camera with a drone, you have to wonder what the hell they were thinking. Greenpeace isn't the best at thinking things through, though.

In fact, this is far from the first time Greenpeace has screwed up, though this latest episode of Greenpeace Being Reckless is particularly atrocious. The environmental group has a long, long history of insensitive or poorly-staged actions, ranging from big - like helping to destroy a GMO crop designed to prevent blindness - to small - like papering a small town with posters the day after a community cleanup.

Comment: Apparently the reason why Greenpeace is so well equipped is because it's a front for US imperialism:

Handcuffs

Civil unrest is rising everywhere while government digs in its heels

I have warned that governments always turn against the people. Illinois just made it a felony to film police abuse in the USA. The Spanish government has followed the same course. Despite protests from political, judicial and population, the politicians who are becoming ruthless elite dictators rather than democratic representatives of the people, passed a law which provides extensive fines for protesters who dare to film the abuse of police. They have the audacity to claim filming police is an "offense against public safety" with fines of up to 600,000 euros. It is the police who protect government - not the people. So let's get this straight. "public safety" has become a code word for "government safety" that no longer gives two shits about the people.

Switzerland enacted laws requiring registration of all guns in the country for the first time when. Why? There have not been any incidents of "public safety". They too realize that the people are starting to wake up against the abuse of government everywhere. The people have caused this. As a whole, people watch sports, buy clothes, and go to dinner. Generally at best half even bother to vote. That has sent the signal to government elites the people do not care so corruption has run wild. But now with taxes rising, unemployment rising, pensions vanishing into thin air, and living standards declining, people want real change no words.

Even in the USA, the Republicans wrongly believe their ideas are what the people want. They too raise taxes. This funding bill allowing the banks to repeal Dodd Frank is an example of the corruption behind the scenes. They vote for Republicans because who is ever in power is being tossed out. Come 2016, it will be the Republican's turn as we see a rise in third-party activity. This repeal of Dodd Frank is a John Andrew Boehner special that goes against the conservative T-Party Republicans.

Politicians will be politicians. What is left to say?

Comment: Psychopathy in action. This is something SOTT has been warning about for years. As an example: Pentagon prepares for mass civil unrest, spends millions.

This is a repeating cycle that mankind experiences. For more information, see Laura Knight-Jadczyk's The Golden Age, Psychopathy and the Sixth Extinction and her fascinating and eminently readable book The Apocalypse: Comets, Asteroids and Cyclical Catastrophes.

Alarm Clock

Finally? Both sides confirm ceasefire finally 'real' in east Ukraine


Chechen volunteers, fighting for Novorussia.
The ceasefire in Ukraine is actually being implemented, and both sides of the conflict have acknowledged this in a rare demonstration of accord after months of mutual accusations.

"I have good news," Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, currently on a visit to Australia, told journalists on Friday. "Today, for the first time in seven months, there was a real 24-hour-long ceasefire."

"You can't imagine how important this is for us. This has become the first night when I don't have a single soldier either killed or wounded".

Poroshenko admitted, however, the truce has so far been "very fragile" and promised to "pray for the process to carry on."


Comment: Yep. As of Tuesday, December 9, Kiev was still shelling away at residential areas.



Comment: Good to hear. But don't celebrate too much just yet. Kiev's parliament is drafting a resolution to declare the conflict, so far a 'punitive' operation, a war. Does that sound like Kiev planning for peace?

Question

Will the CIA torture report cause the masses to wake up to 9/11 truth? We can only hope

george bush CIA
© unknown
With CIA torture programs now fully exposed to the world, a common background theme has emerged. The CIA torture report by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence is a summary of the original report which you can read for yourself. In the first few pages of the Senate report we are quietly reminded that the backdrop which set the stage for the justification of torture is 9/11. More specifically, the 9/11 "official story" narrative. The much questioned, challenged, and refuted official story narrative that is. The report quietly pulls the reader in with a passionate recollection of 9/11:
I recall vividly watching the horror of that day, to include the television footage of innocent men and women jumping out of the World Trade Center towers to escape the fire. The images, and the sounds as their bodies hit the pavement far below, will remain with me for the rest of my life.
Reading down further in the report, the 9/11 official story meme continues fully settling on the clear determined narrative that would be used in the CIA's attempt to justify torture by reminding the audience of the "terrorist plots"

Comment: For more on the Senate torture report see:

Senate torture report: Brutality, psychopathy, lies

Gold Bar

Yet another country: Austria considers repatriating its gold

© Unknown
And just like that, the list of countries who want to repatriate their gold just increased by one more, because after Venezuela, Germany, the Netherlands, sorry Switzerland, and rumors of Belgium, we now can add Austria to those nations for whom the "6000 year old barbarous relic bubble" is more than just "tradition."

From Bloomberg:
Austrian Central Bank Mulls Relocating London Gold: Standard

The Austrian state audit court says central bank should address concentration risk of storing 80% of its gold reserves with the Bank of England, Standard reports, citing draft audit report. Court advises central bank to diversify storage locations, contract partners.

Austrian central bank reviewing gold storage concept, doesn't rule out relocating some of its gold from London to Austria: Standard cites unidentified central ank officials. Austria has 280 tons gold reserves, according to 2013 annual report. Austrian Audit Court Will Review Nation's Gold Reserves in U.K.

Comment: It seems clear many countries are beginning to realize fiat currency has a limited shelf life.

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