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Pepe Escobar: Iran-Russia hit maximum strategy

Raisi Putin
© The Cradle
Two of the three main Eurasian powers, Iran's Ebrahim Raisi and Russia's Vladimir Putin meet in Russia to advance their strategic relations.
The official visit to Russia by Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, at the invitation of Vladimir Putin, generated one of the most stunning geopolitical pics of the 21st century: Raisi performing his afternoon prayers at the Kremlin.

Arguably, more than the hours of solid discussions on geopolitical, geoeconomic, energy, trade, agriculture, transportation and aerospace dossiers, this visual will be imprinted all across the Global South as a fitting symbol of the ongoing, inexorable process of Eurasian integration.

Raisi went to Sochi and Moscow ready to offer Putin essential synergy in confronting a decaying, unipolar Empire increasingly prone to irrationalism. He made it clear at the start of his three hours of discussions with Putin: our renewed relationship should not be "short-term or positional - it will be permanent and strategic."

Comment: See also: And check out SOTT radio's: NewsReal: Kazakhstan on Fire: Why US vs Russia 'Great Game' Could Spark Global Economic Collapse




Cardboard Box

Kazakh President Says 'Gap Between Rich And Poor' Sparked Deadly Protests

tokayev
© Reuters
Kazakh President Qasym-Zhomart Toqaev says an "unacceptable gap" between rich and poor led to deadly anti-government protests that shook the Central Asian country earlier in January.

Talking to representatives of the oil-rich nation's leading businesses on January 21, Toqaev said "real reforms" and "deep transformation of the social structures" are needed to address problems brought up by some of the protesters.

"The gap between the declared social economic agenda and the real situation reached a critical mass and what we need now is a full reset of our economic politics," Toqaev stated.

"With corruption that is well-known, the differences in incomes played the role of an ignited match near a gunpowder barrel, and the situation was used by terrorists, armed individuals, and the masterminds behind them," Toqaev said, adding that he has "already made difficult decisions and will make such decisions in the future."


Comment: That's how pretty much all protests and revolutions work: actual grievances are exploited by people with an agenda, foreign and/or domestic.


Protests in the remote town of Zhanaozen in early January over a sudden fuel price hike quickly spread across Kazakhstan and led to violent clashes in the country's largest city, Almaty, and elsewhere.

Comment: In addition to Nazarbaev ally Masimov, others have been removed from the posts or replaced. That includes former Defense Minister Murat Bektanov, and more of Nazarbaev's relatives:
On January 17, Kazakhstan's National Chamber of Entrepreneurs, Atameken, announced the resignation of its chairman, Timur Kulibaev, a son-in-law of Nazarbaev.

Kulibaev, one of the richest people in the oil-rich former Soviet republic, is the husband of Nazarbaev's second daughter, Dinara.

The same day, President Qasym-Zhomart Toqaev issued a decree to dismiss Nazarbaev's nephew Samat Abish from the post of deputy chairman of the Committee for National Security (KNB).

The moves came after two other sons-in-law of Nazarbaev were pushed out of top jobs at two major state energy companies.
Nazarbaev himself has also been officially stripped of his formerly lifetime posts:
Parliament's lower chamber, the Mazhilis, approved a motion by several lawmakers to deprive the former Kazakh president of his right to be lifetime chairman of the influential Security Council and the Assembly of Kazakhstan's People.
Nazarbaev is going with the program, publicly denying any conflict with Tokaev.


Sheriff

Iran, Russia, China kick off joint military drills in Indian Ocean amid growing ties

iran china russia drill
© IRNA
Iranian, Russian, and Chinese navies kick off joint military drills in the north of the Indian Ocean on January 21, 2022.
The "2022 Marine Security Belt" exercise, which began on Friday morning, marks the third of such joint exercises between the three countries.

"Together for peace and security" is the theme of the exercise, which covers an area of 17,000 square kilometers and includes both navies from Iran's Army and the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), as well as the Russian and Chinese naval forces.

A variety of tactical exercises such as rescuing burning vessels, releasing hijacked vessels, shooting at specific targets, shooting at air targets at night, and other tactical and operational exercises are expected to be carried out during the drills.

Comment: Russia and China's military alliances are growing, and fast, partly because the countries they similar aspirations for multilateralism as their new partners, and partly because of the imminent threat the belligerent West poses to world stability:


Mr. Potato

Tucker's latest Ukraine segment sent liberal media and political elites into meltdown - Twitter comedy ensues

Clint Ehrlich Tucker Carlson
© Fox News
Tucker Carlson speaks with foreign policy specialist Clint Ehrlich

Author and political commentator Michael Brendan Dougherty writes, "Defining Ukraine's sovereignty and integrity as a core security interest of the United States, akin to possession of Massachusetts, is a form of insanity."

As a case in point, Clint Ehrlich has spent a significant amount of time in Russia and the broader region as a geopolitical researcher, making him somewhat a serious expert on the crisis. But his appearance on Tucker Carlson Tonight is now causing a collective meltdown among establishment pundits not seen since the height of the Russiagate hysteria in recent years.

Days ago Ehrlich wrote that "The world is perched on the edge of an abyss. We may soon see the worst combat in Europe since WW2 - killing thousands of people, and raising the likelihood of nuclear war. It didn't have to be this way." And on Wednesday he had this to say: "My segment last night on Tucker Carlson is having a bigger impact than I ever imagined. It's causing pro-war pundits and politicians to lose their minds! Let's catalog their meltdowns...

Binoculars

How scared of November elections are the Democrats? They fear rational populist Tulsi Gabbard

Tulsi Gabbard
Since the day she announced she wouldn't be running for re-election in 2020 I knew Tulsi Gabbard was distancing herself from the Democratic Party for a potential Presidential run in 2024.

Gabbard is supposed to be everything the Democrats want. A strong, 'progressive' female of 'color' who backed Bernie Sanders' runs for the nomination, implying she's a useful Commie. She was groomed early on as a WEF Future Leader and put on important House Committees which landed her default invitations to CFR meetings, while also being a member of the Democratic National Committee.

It was clear she was being schmoozed by the DNC and Davos to become a major player from the moment she was first elected to Congress in 2012.

But something happened on the way to Gabbard's ascension to the top of the U.S. political scene, her conscience got the better of her. I've followed Gabbard for years and watched her carefully, knowing full well about her past associations with Davos.

Now, for the New Statesman to run a schlocky piece about her as a GOP Dark Horse last week at a pivotal moment in the shifts in Congress against the Democrats' domestic policy is telling of just how scared the Democrats and Davos are of the 2024 vote getting split along populist lines.

Eye 2

Bill Gates warns of pandemics 'far worse than Covid'

Bill Gates

Bill Gates American business magnate and vaccine profiteer
As Covid-19 cases driven by the Omicron variant surge across the world, Bill Gates has warned of pandemics worse than the current one.

His comments came as The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and British biomedical charity Wellcome Trust on Tuesday pledged $150m (£109,995) each to the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovation (CEPI) in the fight against Covid and to prepare for future pandemics.


Comment: As has become clear throughout the last 2 years, these 'donations' could be considered as controlling stakes.


The global partnership CEPI was co-founded five years ago during the Ebola epidemic. It co-leads Covax, the initiative to distribute Covid vaccines across the developing world.


Comment: A number of stories have come out showing that the developing world doesn't want the West's expired, experimental jabs, and they've been dumping them. They've also fared much better throughout this manufactured crisis than the developed world, so they have no need for them.


Fourteen vaccine projects, including those of AstraZeneca, Moderna and Novavax, were also funded by the CEPI.

Comment: It seems Bill Gates has more in mind than he's letting on: Bill Gates renews warnings over 'small pox terror' threat, FDA approved drug in May for disease that was 'eradicated' in 1980

See also: Also check out SOTT radio's: The Truth Perspective: Interview with Dilyana Gaytandzhieva: Pentagon Biological Warfare And Arms Trafficking to Terrorists


Eye 1

Tory MPs threaten to release secret recordings of blackmail attempts intended to stop vote of no confidence against PM Johnson

Mark Spencer

The Times reported that Tory MPs keen to see the back of Mr Johnson have secretly recorded 'heated' conversation with the chief whip Mark Spencer, as well as text messages to support the accusations.
Rebel Tories are threatening to release a secret recording of Government whips' 'blackmail' threats as their battle with Boris Johnson took an astonishing new turn.

Backbenchers pushing for the Prime Minister to be replaced amid Partygate chaos claim to have taped party enforcers attempting to bully MPs, as well as having copies of text messages.

Mr Johnson insisted on Thursday he had 'seen no evidence' to support the claim made by senior Conservative William Wragg that his critics were facing 'intimidation' as part of an effort to prevent him being ousted from office.

Comment: Documentary footage from the BBC shows that this kinda of dirty dealing, and even blatant criminal activity, has been par for the course for decades. Below you'll see a former MP admitting that the Whips would help an MP out with "debt", or "a scandal involving small boys" so that they will "do as we ask forever more":


See also: And check out SOTT radio's: MindMatters: The Managerial Revolution and the Circulation of the Elites





Light Saber

Russia warns it may deploy 'military infrastructure' to Cuba and Venezuela if talks with US & NATO fail

Putin
© Natalya Zamboska - Anadolu Agency
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during his annual press conference at the Moscow Manege on December 23, 2021 in Moscow, Russia.
Russian deputy foreign minister Sergei Ryabkov suggested on Thursday that if an agreement is not reached between the United States, NATO, and the Kremlin with regard to Ukraine, Russia may station military forces or missiles in Cuba or Venezuela.

Ryabkov stated that he could "neither confirm nor exclude" the possibility that the Kremlin was weighing such a course of action. "It all depends on the action by our U.S. counterparts," he told the Russian RTVI television network.


Comment: If it's OK for the US to do so with NATO in Europe, then surely they won't mind Russia doing the same in Latin America? Bear in mind that Russia is doing this as a defensive measure, whilst the West's is deliberately antagonistic.


According to Russian president Vladimir Putin, the Kremlin has sought additional "military-technical measures" to take if negotiations over Ukraine fail.

Comment: Biden, as usual, had some pearls of wisdom to share with the world on the matter:


See also: And check out SOTT radio's: NewsReal: Kazakhstan on Fire: Why US vs Russia 'Great Game' Could Spark Global Economic Collapse





Russian Flag

Russian delegation declares start of 'countdown' in wait for adoption of Russian proposals

nato podium otan usa
© Alexandros Michailidis/Shutterstock/FOTODOM
"There arrives a moment of truth when the West either accepts our proposals or other ways will be found to safeguard Russia's security," the head of the Russian delegation at the Vienna Negotiations on Military Security and Arms Control Konstantin Gavrilov said.

The West faces the moment of truth, which has started the countdown in wait for the adoption of Russian proposals on security guarantees addressed to the United States and NATO, Konstantin Gavrilov, the head of the Russian delegation at the Vienna Negotiations on Military Security and Arms Control, said on Wednesday.

Gavrilov spoke at the meeting of the OSCE Forum for Security Cooperation, which is first in 2022.

Comment: See also:


NPC

Putin's 'battle plans & Ukraine invasion', according to Western media

russia invasion map

Daily Mail draws maps of 'full-scale invasion'
The same US "intelligence community" that brought us 'weapons of mass destruction in Iraq' and 'Trump-Russia collusion' claimed in November that Moscow is preparing to invade Ukraine any day now.

The harder Moscow denied it as 'fake news', the louder - and more vivid - the allegations became. Things went into overdrive after high-level security talks between Russia and the US appeared to end in failure, with Washington rejecting Moscow's 'red lines' out of hand.

Daily Mail draws maps of 'full-scale invasion'

"Moscow [has] moved as many as 100,000 troops, as well as tanks and missiles, close to the border" with Ukraine, the Daily Mail claimed on Wednesday. Variations on this line have been reported by just about every major outlet - and many minor ones - in NATO countries over the past six weeks.

Comment: Nice maps. The graphic design department must have been busy. However the investigative journalists with integrity seem to have been holiday.

This might have worked 20 years ago but a significant number of people get their information online these days and unless claims like these are backed up by actual footage and alternative media reports, it's going to be a much harder sell than the Iraq war; which, even back, then drew protests numbering in the millions.

That said, it's likely that Russia will take decisive, defensive action of some kind soon enough, but the chances are that the addled Western establishment and its drones will be completely taken by surprise: Also check out SOTT radio's: NewsReal: Kazakhstan on Fire: Why US vs Russia 'Great Game' Could Spark Global Economic Collapse