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Wed, 22 Feb 2017
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War Whore

Hypocritical MPs demand Theresa May cancel 'disgusting' Trump state visit

© Tom Jacobs / Reuters
A protest against U.S. President Donald Trump in London, February 20, 2017.
MPs of all parties called for "disgusting" US President Donald Trump to be barred from making a UK state visit later this year following Prime Minister Theresa May's "desperate" invitation.

MPs spoke out on Monday during a Parliament debate, which was triggered by a 1.85 million-strong petition calling for Trump's state visit to be blocked as it would be an "embarrassment" to the Queen.

A counter petition signed by 300,000 was also debated.

Comment: Since the British elite are still honoring their ongoing racist & genocidal legacy the most 'disgusting' thing here is their hypocrisy.


Chess

Sources say White House delivered EU-skeptic message to German diplomat ahead of Pence's visit pledging commitment to EU

© REUTERS/Francois Lenoir/File Photo
U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and European Council President Donald Tusk hold a joint news conference in Brussels, Belgium, February 20, 2017
In the week before U.S. Vice President Mike Pence visited Brussels and pledged America's "steadfast and enduring" commitment to the European Union, White House chief strategist Steve Bannon met with a German diplomat and delivered a different message, according to people familiar with the talks.

Bannon, these people said, signaled to Germany's ambassador to Washington that he viewed the EU as a flawed construct and favoured conducting relations with Europe on a bilateral basis.

Three people who were briefed on the meeting spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the matter. The German government and the ambassador, Peter Wittig, declined to comment, citing the confidentiality of the talks.

A White House official who checked with Bannon in response to a Reuters query confirmed the meeting had taken place but said the account provided to Reuters was inaccurate. "They only spoke for about three minutes and it was just a quick hello," the official said.

Snakes in Suits

The hijacking of the Munich Security Conference

History teaches us this - every time a System collapses, its leaders do not realize the truth until they are swept away by the storm. So the political representatives of the European Union, meeting just like every year in Munich for their Security Conference, were shocked to hear Sergey Lavrov speak of a post-Western world order. And yet the world is slipping away from under their feet - the Arab Peoples are desperately resisting wars and false revolutions, while the People of the United States have elected an anti-imperialist into the White House. The organizers of the Conference couldn't have cared less - they were defending the interests of the deep US state against the Trump administration.

The Munich Security Conference took place between 16 and 19 February [1]. Like every year, it united more than 500 European Ministers and members of Parliament, as well as a number of foreign guests. This is the most important international meeting on European Foreign Policy and Defense.

Bad Guys

5 facts proving Lavrov right when he says Ukraine 'dancing to tune of neo-Nazis'

© Sergei Karpukhin / Reuters
Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov
Ukraine's decision to block the adoption by the UN Security Council of a statement dedicated to the late Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin was a disgraceful act.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov described Ukraine's actions...

Comment: The West's coverage of events in Ukraine and Syria has been the ultimate in 'Fake News'. For much better coverage of Ukraine's recent history and the events of the Maidan, check out: Ukraine on Fire: The Oliver Stone documentary the US Empire doesn't want you to see


Bad Guys

What's Blackwater doing in China?

OK, OK, not Blackwater. That's the mercenary force of convicted war criminals founded by Erik Prince that will never outrun its infamy no matter how many times it changes its name.

No, no, no! Not Blackwater! It's Frontier Services Group—an entirely different mercenary group chaired by Erik Prince—that is heading to China! And they're not there to sell mercenary services! Absolutely not. They're merely opening some "forward operating bases" to help the Chinese train "ex-" PLA soldiers how to be mercenaries! It's entirely different!

Now that we have that clear, some context: Erik Prince is the notorious mercenary who believes he's the modern-day descendant of "Wild Bill" Donovan. (Prince even named his youngest son, Charles Donovan Prince, after Bill.) Prince's budding career as a contract killer went down in flames in 2009 after it was revealed that Blackwater was a front for a secret CIA assassination program. He later admitted that Blackwater "became a virtual extension of the CIA" and took orders directly from the agency, but by that point the news spotlight had shifted elsewhere.

Comment: While some maintain that China is merely part of an omnipotent 'NWO' construct, it remains to be proven that A) the world is as completely controlled as they claim, and B) that a world order can't naturally emerge independent of Western 'dog eat dog' values. As James O'Neill puts it in his article, China's 'One Belt One Road' is a New Geopolitical Paradigm:
We therefore have, on the one hand, a decaying empire endlessly fighting wars of choice, and by bluff, bluster and bullying desperately trying to cling to the vestiges of superpower status.

On the other hand, reverting to Mackinder's world island, we have an entirely different geopolitical and economic model. Over the past twenty years China has been constructing a wholly different economic framework. Unlike the Americans who treat every exercise as a zero sum game, i.e. one where they must win and someone else must lose, the Chinese approach is perfectly encapsulated in President Xi's terminology of "win-win."



Eye 2

Trump's "Watergate" all about the Deep State scuttling cooperation with Russia

The adage about One Man's Terrorist is Another Man's Freedom Fighter is aptly paraphrased for the running battle in Washington between President Trump and his intelligence agencies. Only instead of "terrorist" substitute the word "leaker".

Prominent sections of the US media are willingly acting as conduits for intelligence agencies leaking classified government information to damage the Trump White House. The media and Trump's political enemies are thus acting as accomplices in criminal disclosure of supposedly secret government information, which at another time the same media and politicians would condemn as treasonous. Think Edward Snowden or Chelsea Manning for instance.

Trump has hit back after his National Security Advisor Michael Flynn was forced to resign over disclosed phone contacts he had with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak earlier this year. With barely contained anger, Trump described the leaks as "criminal" and "un-American" and has scorned media outlets for conspiring to destabilize his presidency - only less than one month after taking office.

In turn, media outlets like the New York Times, Washington Post and CNN have disparaged Trump for trying to "deflect" the issue away from alleged contacts with Russian state officials to the issue of intelligence services leaking classified information. Such disclosure is a criminal offense, punishable by jail for breach of government secrecy rules.

Trump does have a point though. The practice of leaking confidential information by security services is a grave breach.

Comment: The Deep State knives have been out for Trump since the day of the election


Folder

Report: Trump associate said to have facilitated back-channel Ukraine peace plan

© AFP
Lawyer Michael Cohen
An exclusive report in The New York Times says a lawyer for U.S. President Donald Trump has helped a pro-Russia opposition Ukrainian lawmaker submit to Trump's administration a proposed alternative peace plan for the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists on February 20 that the report was "absurd" and that Moscow had no knowledge of the purported peace plan.

According to the February 19 Times report, Trump's lawyer Michael Cohen submitted the plan to former national security adviser Michael Flynn about one week before Flynn resigned over allegations that he misinformed the administration about the nature of his contacts with Russia's ambassador to the United States. Cohen -- who has no foreign-policy experience -- is himself under investigation by the FBI for possible connections with Russian intelligence. He denies the allegations.
The plan was created by Ukrainian opposition lawmaker Andriy Artemenko, who claims to have documents proving corruption by Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko. It called for Russia to withdraw its forces from eastern Ukraine and for Ukraine to hold a referendum on leasing the region of Crimea to Russia for a period of 50 or 100 years. Moscow seized and illegally Ukraine's Crimea region in 2014.
According to The New York Times report, Artemenko's plan outlines "a way for President Trump to lift sanctions against Russia."

Comment: According to the NYT, Cohen said Mr. Sater had given him the written proposal in a sealed envelope and he left the proposal in Mr. Flynn's office. While Cohen reportedly acted on his own initiative (or more likely was used as the delivery mechanism), both Cohen and Sater said they had not spoken to Mr. Trump about the proposal and that neither had experience in foreign policy. Paul Manafort denies any knowledge of the plan or any role in it.

Was it a confluence of altruism and diplomatic freelancing by amateurs and associates behind the scenes? ...an attempt to smudge relations with Russia and ding the Trump administration with incompetence? ...a direct manipulation by specific factions for specific effects?

Update (Feb. 21): No surprise here: Ukraine's top prosecutor is going after Artemenko on suspicion of treason:
Prosecutor-General Yuriy Lutsenko told reporters on February 21 that Andriy Artemenko may have committed a treasonous offense in designing a plan to lease Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula to Russia in exchange for Kyiv regaining control of land held by Russia-backed separatists in the east.

The peace-for-sanctions-relief plan Artemenko claimed he co-authored thrust him into the spotlight on February 20 after The New York Times reported that it had wound up on the desk of Trump's short-lived national security adviser, Michael Flynn.

A document announcing the inquiry shared on Facebook by Lutsenko accuses Artemenko of carrying out subversive activities against Ukraine.

Such actions are punishable in Ukraine by 10 to 15 years in prison.

Artemenko, who was ousted on February 20 from the Radical Party, could not immediately be reached for comment.



USA

Anti-Trumpers are lapping up the media's lies

We apologize for the understatement, but February has been a disappointing month for anyone who was looking forward to a less awful world.

The dangers we face today are now visible and apparent: One wrong move in Yemen could spark a major conflict between Iran and the United States. One wrong move in Ukraine could spark a conflict between Russia and the United States. One wrong move in Syria and the peace settlement collapses and then we're all back at square one: mindless "moderate" killing, in perpetuity.

It didn't have to be this way. But at some point after November 8, Americans who voted for the lady who didn't win decided that they would chew and swallow any and all baloney in the noble pursuit of dethroning the fascist KGB dictator, Donald Trump. We didn't even vote for the guy. But c'mon, people.

It doesn't matter if the tomes of "damning evidence" contradict each other, or if this evidence even exists at all. It's completely irrelevant. The ends justify the means. And the means involves lapping up the lies, no matter how offensive they are to basic critical thinking.

A few recent examples, the first being today's "big story".

Safe

French deep state on the hunt? Police search Le Pen's National Front HQ over alleged misuse of EU funds

© Reuters
Investigators have raided the headquarters of France's National Front (FN) as part of a probe into allegations the far-right party and its leader, Marine le Pen, misused EU funds to pay staff listed as EU parliament aides who apparently worked elsewhere.

It's the second time in less than a week that police have raided Le Pen's offices in Nanterre, west of Paris. The National Front has slammed the accusations as politically motivated and unsubstantiated.

"For the second time, a raid took place at the same offices, over the same allegations, which confirms that the first raid amounted to nothing," the National Front said in a statement, released in the aftermath of Monday's raid.

The party denounced the move as a "media operation whose sole purpose is to try to disrupt the smooth running of the [Le Pen's] presidential election campaign." The statement also pointed out that the back-to-back searches came at the very moment Le Pen is making big strides in the polls.

Comment: Le Pen has said: France will recognize Crimea as Russian; France should have good relations with Russia; and during her Lebanon trip, said Syrian President Assad should stay in power. Need we say more?
Le Pen told Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri that there was "no viable and workable solution" to the Syrian civil war beyond choosing between Assad and the Islamic State (IS) extremist group, which she said must be "eradicated."

"Since we can't let IS take power, there is no alternative to Assad," she said. "The least bad option is the politically realistic. It appears that...Assad is evidently today the most reassuring solution for France."
She added:
"The way to protect the Christian minority is to eradicate those who have a vision of destroying all the minorities."

"For me to protect Christians is to make sure the Christians stay in their countries," not become refugees, she said.



Radar

China opposes US naval patrols in South China Sea

© Tyrone Siu / Reuters
USS Blue Ridge, the flagship of the U.S. Navy's Seventh Fleet
China says it respects the principles of freedom of navigation and overflight, but "opposes" when other states undermine its sovereignty using this pretext. The statement comes after a US aircraft carrier group began patrols in disputed South China Sea waters.

"China always respects the freedom of navigation and overflight all countries enjoy under international law," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said at a daily news briefing on Monday, as cited by Reuters.

"But we are consistently opposed to relevant countries threatening and damaging the sovereignty and security of littoral countries under the flag of freedom of navigation and overflight. We hope relevant countries can do more to safeguard regional peace and stability," the spokesman said.

The statement was China's first official comment on the latest US patrol mission. The US Navy made the announcement on its website last Saturday, stating that the strike group, including Nimitz-class aircraft carrier 'USS Carl Vinson', together with aircraft from the 'Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 2', and the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer 'USS Wayne E. Meyer' started "routine operations" in the South China Sea.

The deployment came a day after China completed war games with an aircraft carrier in the disputed waters and less than a week after Beijing issued a stern warning for the US to stay away from the area, stating that "China has indisputable sovereignty over the South China Sea islands and their adjacent waters."

Comment: See also: US aircraft carrier group deployed for 'routine patrols' in South China Sea