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Sun, 20 May 2018
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Eye 1

Yesterday's hegemony keeps Washington confused

Donald Trump
At this point, there's hardly any doubt left that Western elites are reluctant to admit that they've faced a major crisis.

Over a short period of time, the people of this world were presented with a number of challenges no one is really willing to face. Those are military clashes, political disputes, along with the drastic aggravation of international relations between key international players. Against this background, Russia's relations with a number of Western states sunk to a new low. Western elites try to argue that this situation was triggered by the steps that Moscow took, and above the positions that Russia's President Vladimir Putin occupied on a number of issues. There's no arguing that a strong Russian leader must be really annoying for those politicians in the West that are rapidly losing their authority along with their face. In fact, there's a long list of their own personal failures they are trying to blame on the policies pursued by Russia and its president.

At the same time, there's an ever increasing number of people in the West who are genuinely trying to figure out highly puzzling realities of today's geopolitics for themselves, since the blame game that is being sold to them as a universal explanation of all problems doesn't fulfill their curiosity. Among such people, one can name the political observer of the German newspaper Die Zeit, Jochen Bittner. He has a reputation of an intelligent man that is always trying to establish the cause of any phenomenon, although he can hardly be described as a Russian sympathizer. In his recent article published by The New York Times, he compares the current state of international relations with the so-called Great Game of the nineteenth century, during which great powers would use all sorts of tricks to obtain more influence.

Rocket

Putin outlines nuclear deployment plans: New ICBM in 2020, hypersonic glider in 2019

Test launch of a Sarmat missile
© Russian Defense Ministry
Test launch of a Sarmat missile.
The Russian military is expected to deploy the Sarmat ICBM in 2020 and the Avangard hypersonic glider warhead in 2019, according to Vladimir Putin. He described both weapons as essential for future nuclear deterrence.

The deadline for the deployment of the two weapon systems was confirmed by the Russian president on Friday during a meeting with defense officials and contractors - the first such meeting since the reshuffle of the Russian cabinet earlier this week.

The Sarmat is Russia's future silo-based intercontinental ballistic missile, which will replace the ageing Voyevoda ICBMs. The new weapon is said to have extended range, which allows such missiles to reach US territory from the south, where they cannot be stopped by anti-ballistic interceptors deployed in Alaska.

Comment: For more on this topic:


Attention

Trump taps ex-Gitmo commander and Navy chief in 2011 Libya bombing as new envoy to S. Korea

Admiral Harry B Harris
© Roslan RAHMAN / AFP
A former commander of Guantanamo Bay and the maritime chief of the US-led bombing of Libya in 2011 has been nominated by President Donald Trump as US ambassador to South Korea. He currently heads all US Navy operations in Asia.

Admiral Harry B. Harris Jr, the incumbent commander of US Pacific Command, is President Donald Trump's pick for the American ambassador to South Korea, the White House said in a press release. The key diplomatic position remains vacant after Trump dropped his previous choice for the post, Victor Cha, who was a top North Korea expert on the National Security Council.

Describing Harris as "a highly decorated, combat-proven naval officer with extensive knowledge, leadership, and geopolitical expertise in the Indo-Pacific region," the statement noted that he has served "in every geographic combatant command region."

Eye 1

Facebook teams up with Atlantic Council to meddle in elections around the world

Facebook Mark Zuckerberg
© Associated Press
Facebook has partnered with the Atlantic Council, whose members include arch-globalists like Henry Kissinger and Dina Powell, to "protect free and fair elections around the world."

Facebook announced earlier today that the Atlantic Council will provide it with "real-time insights and updates on emerging threats and disinformation campaigns from around the world."

In other words, Facebook will trust a globalist think-tank to distinguish "disinformation" from the spin and sloganeering that characterize virtually all democratic elections.

Comment: Facebook has announced that it will rank news sites based on how much we can trust them - or rather, if the 'Masters of the Universe' approve of their message. RT reports:
Last month, Facebook also announced it would rank news sites based on "trust." No details were given as to how that scheme might work, but Facebook has already partnered up with several mainstream media outlets to "fact-check" news.

You know, the same mainstream media who on Wednesday breathlessly reported the fake news that President Donald Trump had called illegal immigrants "animals." Even a cursory viewing of the event, live-streamed on YouTube, could reveal he was talking about the notorious gang MS-13, but very few outlets bothered to check.
Further reading:


Bad Guys

America's blueprint for 'greatness' is a recipe for disaster

US Army Syria Aleppo
© Khalil Ashawi / Reuters
U.S soldiers ride a military vehicle in al-Kherbeh village, northern Aleppo province, Syria October 24, 2016.
The only way to establish world peace is for the United States to stop its meddling in other countries and focus on what really matters to the American people - 'Making America Great Again.'

The cradle of civilization, the Middle East, has been a battleground which has endured countless wars in the name religion, power and interests. Today is no different. We see history repeating itself with wars provoked and fought in the name of freedom and peace. Nowadays American foreign policy reflects its allies' interests rather than the interests of the American people. There can never be true, genuine peace in the Middle East when the United States is contributing to, rather than resolving, the underlying issues.

Behind the headlines about terrorism and slaughter, living amid the wars and revolutions which plague the region, are millions of people trying to lead normal lives in an atmosphere of ongoing conflict. Most of those living in the Middle East have no more power to stop the violence or their oppression than we do in the United States to house our homeless or eliminate the crime in our streets.

Caesar

Putin announces ambitious $200 billion highway building program

Because of lower costs and higher efficiencies in Russia, this is the equivalent to the US spending $1.6 trillion
Putin
This TV report is from a 6 weeks ago, shortly after Putin announced his new 'miracle weapons'. The full significance of this major announcement was subsequently lost in the excitement about the new weapons.

For a comparison, total spending on ALL infrastructure in Trump's 2018 budget is $200 billion. Factor in that due to a much lower cost base, including labor, building materials, and domestic technology, Russians can build major infrastructure significantly cheaper than the US, in the case of roads, approximately by a factor of 8. So this is the equivalent of the US investing $1.6 trillion on roads.

Earlier today, we wrote about Russia's new focus on investing in domestic programs at the expense of military spending: 'Russia First'? Putin Cuts Military Spending to Boost Domestic Programs. This roads announcement is an example of this.

Comment:

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Newspaper

Report that Novichok sample came from Germany in 1990s 'plausible' - Top ex-German spy

Skripals
© ukr.media / Global Look Press
A German report claiming that the country's BND spy agency secured a sample of the nerve agent Novichok from a Russian scientist in the 1990s "sounds plausible," according to ex-German intelligence officer, Rainer Rupp.

Rupp told RT that witnesses have been prepared to talk about the work carried out by the Germans, and that the government had "tried to acquire chemical weapons" for the military in the past.

"This research group can present some witnesses who are prepared to talk about it, who participated in this operation, so it sounds plausible to me and all the more because the best German government had already previously tried to acquire chemical weapons for the Bundeswehr [armed forces]," he said.

Comment: As the "Russia did it" narrative fell apart, this story just evaporated from the mainstream media!


Eagle

'Behaving like it's 19th century'? US Congress to consider recognition of Israeli annexation of Golan Heights

Israeli tanks
© AFP 2018 / JALAA MAREY
Israeli soldiers manuever Merkava tanks and Namer armored personnel carriers (APCs) during the last day of a military exercise in the northern part of the Israeli-annexed Golan Heights on September 13, 2017.
Congress is set to consider a new measure to recognize Israel's sovereignty over the contested Golan Heights region that separates Israel from Syria, a key piece of territory that has become all the more important since the civil war in Syria brought scores of jihadist fighters, including those backed by Iran, into the region.

Rep. Ron DeSantis (R., Fla.), a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, introduced on Thursday a resolution that could lead to an historic recognition by the United States that the contested area fully belongs to Israel, according to a copy of the amendment obtained by the Washington Free Beacon.

Israel annexed the Golan Heights in 1981 following the Six Day War in the late 60s with Arab nations in the region. The United States has declined for decades to take a position on the status of this territory, but following President Donald Trump's decision to move the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, DeSantis and others see an opportunity for the United States to recognize another territorial reality-that the Golan Heights will not be given back to Syria, particularly in light of the strife gripping the country.

Comment: What was it former US Secretary of State John Kerry said 4 years ago about Russia's annexation of Crimea?
"You just don't in the 21st century behave in 19th century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped up pre-text..."
As US hegemony is in tatters due to military failures in Syria, the Israelis and their friends elsewhere are desperate to legitimize their plunder using 'the Iran scare' through the servile US Congress.

See also:


Biohazard

Putin: 'If Novichok was used, Skripal would have died on the spot', ex-double agent leaves hospital

Hospital
© Andrew Parsons / Global Look Press
Russian President Vladimir Putin says he was happy to hear that former double agent Sergei Skripal had been discharged from hospital, stressing that if a weapons-grade poison had been used, Skripal would have died on the spot.

Speaking at a joint press conference with visiting German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Putin said he had heard Skripal had been released from hospital.

"God give him health, we are very happy," the Russian president said. He added, however, that he doubts a weapons-grade toxin was used to poison Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury, UK, in early March.

"I think that if, as our British colleagues claim, a weapons-grade poison had been used, that person would be dead on the spot. Combat chemicals are so strong that the person either dies immediately or within seconds, maybe minutes," Putin said.

Biohazard

'Caged in toxic slum': UN rights chief condemns Israel over deadly Gaza protests

A Palestinian man looks out of his  damaged apartment
© Mohammed Salem / Reuters
A Palestinian man looks out of his apartment that was damaged in an Israeli airstrike at a nearby militant target in the northern Gaza Strip December 9, 2017.
Israel is depriving 1.9 million people in Gaza of basic rights and creating inhumane conditions, according to a UN human rights chief. He has also castigated the use of lethal force by Israel during the recent protests.

"They are, in essence, caged in a toxic slum from birth to death; deprived of dignity; dehumanised by the Israeli authorities," UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein stated.

The UN human rights watchdog called a special session on Friday in the wake of "appalling" events in Gaza. Some 87 Palestinians, including 12 children, were killed by Israeli security forces since March 30, with more than 40 fatalities and more than 1,300 injured on Monday alone, the UN estimates.

"This was not 'a PR victory for Hamas', in the reported words of a senior Israeli military spokesman; it was a tragedy for thousands of families," Zeid said in the opening speech at a special session of the Human Rights Council. Given the "stark contrast in casualties" on each side, and stressing that the demonstrators did not pose a threat to the lives of Israelis, he said the response amounted to "willful killings" in a grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention.

Comment: See also: Dozens of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces at Gaza border while idiot Jared Kushner blames the victims during speech in Jerusalem