In a development that will likely grab media attention in the US, Russian police detained Kremlin opposition leader Alexei Navalny, according to his Twitter feed on Monday, hours before he called on supporters to mount an unsanctioned protest against corruption near the Kremlin. Navalny’s wife wrote on his Twitter account that he had been detained near the entrance of his home but that plans for the protest in central Moscow hadn’t changed. Earlier in the day, the presidential hopeful had announced rallies against official corruption Monday, the Russia Day holiday, and protesters gathered in numerous other cities. Similar protests led by Navalny drew thousands in March in Moscow and several other cities across Russia, in what the WSJ dubbed “a rare challenge to the rule of President Vladimir Putin.” Photos from cities around the country on Monday, an official holiday known as Russia Day, showed thousands of protesters at fresh rallies. Vladimir Putin vowed to punish people who broke the law after the March protests at anti-corruption rallies organized by Navalny that were mostly unsanctioned in 80 cities across Russia, the biggest unrest in five years. Police arrested 1,500 people nationwide, including more than 1,000 in Moscow, and a handful are being prosecuted for attacking police.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 12, 2017.
One of the reasons that Syria is ‘on hold’ is that the Russians are now leveraging the President with the connections formed in his campaign prior to the election. Paul Manafort, onetime manager of President Trump’s campaign apparently has received payments from a pro-Russian political party in Ukraine. An article covering it entitled Manafort firm received Ukraine ledger payout by Jack Gillum, Chad Day, and Jeff Horwitz was released on Thursday by the Associated Press. The bad news is that the ledger is substantiated by records booked by Manafort’s consulting firm in the U. S., already under a corruption investigation by the FBI with even more overlap. Apparently, the FBI and Congress are investigating Manafort’s activities with Russia and possible ties to Vladimir Putin regarding the President’s campaign. These activities which could have included payoffs allegedly occurred in 2016. But a distinct pattern is observable here. Tillerson is still ‘on the attack,’ today demanding that Russia oust Syrian President Bashar al-Assad…and the President in the meantime has announced we wouldn’t be sending troops into Syria. Perhaps he is hesitant, as (if they have such evidence) Russia would certainly not shirk from releasing information that could be damaging to the President. At this stage, the threat of such a release appears to be keeping things in check: we haven’t launched another Tomahawk strike yet.
This post was published at shtfplan on April 14th, 2017.
One day after snap protests against corruption and Russia PM Medvedev broke out across numerous Russian cities, leading to the detention of hundreds of protesters as well as opposition leader Aleksey Navalny, the Russian opposition activist was found guilty of staging an unsanctioned rally, and will be fined 20,000 rubles (US$350) for his role in organizing what the authorities said was an illegal protest in Moscow on Sunday. The Russian protests, estimated to be the biggest since a wave of anti-Kremlin demonstrations in 2011/2012, come a year before a presidential election that Vladimir Putin is expected to contest, running for what would be a fourth term.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 27, 2017.
In a day of anti-corruption protests across Russia, thousands of people crowded into Moscow’s Pushkin Square on Sunday for an unsanctioned protest against the Russian government, part of a wave of demonstrations taking place throughout the country. For the Moscow demonstration, around 8,000 people took to the streets according to police. As the rally continued, police used loudspeakers to call on the protesters to disperse. A number of people were detained for disorderly conduct, among whom was the prominent leader of the anti-Putin opposition. Alexei Navalny, the anti-corruption campaigner who is leading the opposition to President Vladimir Putin, was arrested while walking from a nearby subway station to the demonstration, according to Associated Press journalists at the scene.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 26, 2017.
In the latest attempt to stir the pot over allegations that Trump and members of his closest circle had ties to Russia, on Wednesday, the AP unearthed a 2005 memo from former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort – who was let go by the Trump campaign in the summer to Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska, who became Russia’s richest man under Putin and whose key asset is a 48% stake in Russian aluminum giant Rusal, according to which Manafort would boost Putin’s agenda and reportedly undermine anti-Russian opposition across Europe, the U. S. and former Soviet republics. “We are now of the belief that this model can greatly benefit the Putin Government if employed at the correct levels with the appropriate commitment to success,” Manafort wrote, adding it “will be offering a great service that can re-focus, both internally and externally, the policies of the Putin government.” As a reminder, Manafort worked as Trump’s unpaid campaign chairman last year from March until August. Trump asked Manafort to resign after AP revealed that Manafort had orchestrated a covert Washington lobbying operation until 2014 on behalf of Ukraine’s ruling pro-Russian political party.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 22, 2017.
The character of events from week to week, and as discussed by both Batchelor and Cohen, is manifestly worsening. While the proxy wars are stabilizing to some little extent, we see the political wars in governments as fall out of the New Cold War in a constant state of escalation. Cohen notes a New York Times piece by Charles Blow that coined a name for what is happening as an ‘Era of Suspicion’ and the author considered this a positive thing for the country – where all the interest groups are being forced by the hate and fear campaign to align with the anti-Russian narrative whether it serves their interests or not. This past week Batchelor brings up the news about the Estonian Ambassador, Eerik Marmei and the Ukrainian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Pavlo Klimkin who spoke to a Senate subcommittee about Russia disrupting elections in Europe, and the danger of cyber warfare by Russia. Also mentioned were the Trump charges that Obama had his Trump Tower ‘bugged’. Cohen then launched into what the consequences of this new ‘Era of Suspicion’ and the professor describes how the pressure to conform has influenced all the politicos (Flynn debacle) and the masters of industry in the United States, who want to have business dealings with Russia, into remaining cautiously silent. These and other efforts are being used to isolate Trump and neuter or redirect any chance of dtente or even honest discussion of serious geopolitical events. It is working too – with Republicans also becoming divided. Some Republicans are looking at Vice President Pence for the president’s position. Cohen also discusses the role of ‘expert consultants on Russia’ in the media and their efforts to vilify Putin and the Kremlin. All interviews using these people are factually untrue. The most egregious of these, for example, maintained that Putin was ‘deliriously happy that Washington was in complete chaos over Russian policies’. Batchelor exclaims that this is ‘complete rubbish’. It was also Batchelor’s opinion that it was serious that Trump did not mention Russia in his address to Congress. What this indicates is that dtente is getting much less likely. Cohen also mentions the resurrection of McCarthyism with a Committee of Un-American Activity being formed and concludes that disorder is the contrived tenure of modern Western diplomacy. In my opinion Trump has to decide whether folding to the will of his opposition will stop this campaign to remove him or will it show weakness that will lead to escalation. His reticence to talk about Russia may be testing the waters, or be showing weakness. Senator Graham, who talked with the president, seems to think the latter and the US will ‘push back’ against Russia. I think Trump is folding too. The push back will see more support for NATO and perhaps more military help for Ukraine. Cohen discusses the quasi NATO presence now in Ukraine, and he also brings up a potential increase in US troop presence in Syria. He discusses the dangers of a combined military presence of US and Russian assets in Syria. Cohen then discusses the simple solution to ease the danger, and it really is simple. Disengagement. But Putin needs Washington (Trump) to cooperate. But Cohen now considers this as unlikely as he thinks Trump is folding to his opposition in Washington. In Ukraine the political and economic situation is worse and where President Poroshenko is having no control over the ukronazis – who are now embargoing coal imports from the Donbass. This hurts Kiev, but also illuminates the reality of a failing central government. A personal question: Will NATO continue to base troops there? It would mean contending with or working with nazis in a failed state environment? But would most of the West hear about it? That’s where we are, living behind a virtual information wall that George Orwell would immediately recognize. From my point of view the Military Industrial Complex has shown no sense of danger in supporting a ‘confrontation for profit’ policy against Russia, and now the people of the West are effectively ‘walled off’ from learning about critical realities by a systemic corruption of the MSM. Washington is creating its own “Iron Curtain”. Not even discussions at the highest levels of Washington are tolerated unless they support the narrative. One wonders how long this can go on with the Military Industries dependent on tax dollars, and the financial sector and other interests looting the economy and destroying that same tax base. This becomes another reason to impose that ‘Era of Suspicion’ on the whole country; if one cannot advise or discuss an argument against war dangers (or government policies) without censure, then war becomes more inevitable in spite of the fundamentals that work against it. One could say, ‘unleash the dogs of war’ but first hugely increase the fiscal deficit.
The massive WikiLeaks Vault 7 release is an extremely important public service. It’s hard to find anyone not concerned by a secret CIA hacking program targeting virtually the whole planet – using malware capable of bypassing encryption protection on any device from iOS to Android, and from Windows to Samsung TVs. In a series of tweets, Edward Snowden confirmed the CIA program and said code names in the documents are real; that they could only be known by a ‘cleared insider;’ the FBI and CIA knew all about the digital loopholes, but kept them open to spy; and that the leaks provided the ‘first public evidence’ that the US government secretly paid to keep U.S. software unsafe. If that’s not serious enough, WikiLeaks alleges that ‘the CIA has lost control of the majority of its hacking arsenal;’ several hundred million lines of code – more than what is used to run Facebook. Someone among the former U.S. government hackers and contractors ended up leaking portions of the CIA archive (Snowden II?). WikiLeaks also stressed how the CIA had created, in effect, its ‘own NSA’ – maximum unaccountability included.
If you want to be an American TV talking head or a Western presstitute, you are required to be braindead and integrity-challenged like Bill O’Reilly, CNN, MSNBC, and the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal and all the rest. In an interview with President Donald Trump, O’Reilly said: ‘Putin is a killer.’ O’Reilly is indifferent to the fact that thermo-nuclear war is a killer of planet Earth. For O’Reilly, President Trump’s desire to normalize relations with Russia is an indication that the President of the US is comfortable making deals with killers, as if America’s last three presidents have not been mass killers comfortable with their destruction in whole or part of many countries and millions of peoples. President Trump’s response to O’Reilly’s was: ‘We’ve got a lot of killers. What do you think – our country’s so innocent?’ The only thing wrong with President Trump’s response is that it implicitly accepts that Putin is no different from Obama, George W. Bush, and Bill Clinton. Yet there is no evidence that Putin is a ‘killer.’ This accusation is an assertion from those who prosper from having a ‘Russian threat’ to keep the money and power flowing to themselves.
Hillary told her donor base at Manhattan’s Plaza Hotel last Thursday that Russian cyber attacks were both ‘a personal beef against me’ and meant to undermine ‘the integrity of our democracy.’ Of course, absent from the speech was anything realistic acknowledging that there is a global trend against corruption that is unfolding worldwide. Hillary will blame everyone and everybody but herself. Obama in his press conference is trying to address the contradictions surfacing when Clapper told Congress there was no evidence of a Russian hack on November 17th. Obama now says when he saw Russian President Vladimir Putin in China in early September, he told him to ‘cut it out’ and that there would be some serious retaliation if he didn’t.’ Obama now says that after of that meeting, the government did not see further tampering of the election process. The Wall Street Journal says Obama goes off the Hillary script.
The Clintons will never accept responsibility for anything. Now they are blaming Huma Abedin for the Hillary’s lost election. Vanity Fair reported that one campaign insider commented, ‘[Abedin] was enjoying the red carpet and enjoying the photo spreads much too much in my opinion. She enjoyed being a celebrity too much.’ Obama blamed Putin for revealing the truth about the corruption inside the Democratic Party, as if that was unfair because they would have gotten away with it.
I have never seen in my lifetime the deep hatred that is emerging in politics. Obama is clearly getting his CIA cronies to stir the pot claiming that Putin hacked the DNC to seek revenge of Hillary. But exposing the corruption inside the Democrats is just justification to overturn the election. Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) daughter and Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta are backing the effort to get electors to ignore the election and vote for Hillary. They are claiming they have now 30 people to turn and that means if neither candidate get 270, it goes to the House or Representatives. Yet we are talking about really turning up the civil unrest. The Democrats refuse to accept any loss and they are intent on trying to really force Marxism down everyone’s throats. We are talking about real bloodshed on the streets if this were to take place. It will be civil war.
So we'll have a president who lost the pop vote by 2.1%, got in thanks to FBI and Putin. And supporters will demand respect. Um, no. — Paul Krugman (@paulkrugman) December 10, 2016
In our initial take on the WaPo report of a “secret” CIA assessment, according to which Russia, without a shred of evidence, helped Trump win the election (it remains unclear just how Putin “hacked” several hundred thousands Rust Belt workers into believing Hillary Clinton would offshore their jobs), we summarized in five point how this was nothing short of a “soft coup” attempt by leaders of the US Intel community and Obama administration to influence the Electoral College vote. To wit: Announce “consensus” (not unanimous) “conclusion” based in circumstantial evidence now, before the Electoral College vote, then write a report with actual details due by Jan 20. Put a proven liar in charge of writing the report on Russian hacking. Fail to mention that not one of the leaked DNC or Podesta emails has been shown to be inauthentic. So the supposed Russian hacking simply revealed truth about Hillary, DNC, and MSM collusion and corruption.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 10, 2016.
‘During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.’ – George Orwell, Visionary Author Now that the rigged election circus is finally behind us and the United States as a fake democracy has been exposed as a complete fraud, along with its criminally complicit, fake mainstream media news predicting Hillary would be the next president, with a vengeance the elite has accelerated its war against internet alternative news as the one and only closest source of truth left available to the global masses. For ducking out from taking any honest responsibility for every scandal or shortcoming throughout her long, anything but ethical public life, Hillary Clinton’s M. O. has always been to rail against ‘the vast right-wing conspiracy’ as her nemesis. Her election loss is no different. In all the frenzied post-election finger-pointing, puppet-in-chief Obama, his anointed, would-be successor Hillary and their MSM whores are acting as the proverbial pot calling the kettle black, launching a campaign to ‘expose’ the internet for so-called ‘fake news,’ conveniently blamed for Hillary losing the election (along with FBI fall guy James Comey, WikiLeaks and Putin of course, and legions of racist Trump supporters). The liars are citing every reason but the actual reason for their loss – Hillary has been proven ad nauseam to be nothing more than a pathological lying prostitute for pure greed and the genocidal masters she bows down to and serves. Americans have grown so sick of government corruption, endless wars and blatant treason by their leaders maintaining policies that have consistently been destroying America, they’ve elected an angry, bigoted, rich white man as their latest hope promising to drain the swamp infested by leeching Washington criminals. And the prospect of a growing wrath behind a seething rage in America about ready to spill over has deep state insiders initiating an all-out offensive in a last gasp effort to ward off the truth from fully exposing their international crime cabal once and for all, especially since the Clinton et al.’s international child sex slavery-trafficking ring was outed [yet again] last month. As quickly as it resurfaced on alternative news sites, it closed just as quickly when Comey reclosed Hillary’s criminal investigation two days prior to the election.
This post was published at Lew Rockwell on November 26, 2016.
As we move into the final month prior to this year’s presidential election, the tempo of dramatic world events and developments that are breaking daily is mind-boggling. Every single day we are seeing more outrageously desperate actions on the part of the globalists and their US government minions. Among the latest unfolding developments this week all fast tracking towards world war against Russia is NATO’s violation of international law deploying AWACS (Airborne Radar Warning and Control system) in Syria despite only Syria and Russia possessing the legal right to control the embattled country’s airspace. With both US and Turkish boots on the ground in northern Syria and US-led coalition airstrikes regularly invading the sovereign nation’s airspace, recently targeting Syrian soldiers andplans to kill more, along with former acting CIA director Mike Morell’s recent call to begin killing Russian soldiers, the latest warpath rant comes from Army Chief of Staff General Mark Milley who is now threatening Russia (as well as China and Iran) with nuclear war. Spoken just like a true grade school bully on a playground, he boasts, ‘We will beat you harder than you have ever been beaten before!’ This is the kind of moronic leadership that rises to the top of the Empire food chain? I’m afraid so. God help us when his most likely next commander-in-chief is the warmongering bulldog herself Hillary Clinton who’s not any more civilized nor humane. She’s already made it very clear that any real or perceived cyberspace attack on America coming from anywhere in the world constitutes an act of war and a military response against the cyber-perpetrators’ country. After already vowing to bomb Iran and with her constant accusations blaming Putin for everything gone wrong in her miserable life, including exposing her DNC corruption scandal responsible for rigging her presidential election, she is also all but promising to launch World War III against nuclear powered Russia. Incisive insider Paul Craig Roberts and even Putin have both said so. The neocon insanity that she represents is committed to perpetrating both suicidal and genocidal mass murder. With a total of 7,100 US nuclear warheads as of August 2016 and an estimate reported two years ago of 2,150 operationally deployed nukes, America could destroy itself four times over while Russia’s 7,300 nuclear weapons would likely carry the same tremendous overkill power. When we’re all dead, it hardly matters who has what? As the Benghazi ringleader who gave the stand down order that sealed the fate of four murdered Americans would say,’What difference does it make?’ The sheer madness in control of our planet right now actually believes the elite can simply hunker down in their underground luxury bunkers, take a long nuclear winter’s nap and a few years later emerge like Rip Van Winkle unscathed in their grandiose fairy tale. Talk about madness!
From DaisyLuther.com, It’s really quite embarrassing on a global scale when members of our own government seem to be deliberately trying to pick fights with people who aren’t interested in fighting with us. If you’ve traveled outside of the United States much, you probably know that we Americans have a rather negative reputation off of our own shores. Now, generally speaking, that isn’t our fault as individuals. You and I don’t create headlines that make waves throughout Europe and Asia. While average Americans aren’t directly responsible for this, our federal officials are. I’ve written recently about President Obama doing things in Syria that are worsening the conflict there. I’ve also written about the fact that he and Russian President Vladimir Putin are starting to butt heads. And finally, I’ve warned time and time again that war is upon us – and everyone knows but the US.
Arguably, the nuttiest neoconservative idea – among a long list of nutty ideas – has been to destabilize nuclear-armed Russia by weakening its economy, isolating it from Europe, pushing NATO up to its borders, demonizing its leadership, and sponsoring anti-government political activists inside Russia to promote ‘regime change.’ This breathtakingly dangerous strategy has been formulated and implemented with little serious debate inside the United States as the major mainstream news media and the neocons’ liberal-interventionist sidekicks have fallen in line much as they did during the run-up to the disastrous invasion of Iraq in 2003. Except with Russia, the risks are even greater – conceivably, a nuclear war that could exterminate life on the planet. Yet, despite those stakes, there has been a cavalier – even goofy – attitude in the U. S. political/media mainstream about undertaking this new ‘regime change’ project aimed at Moscow. There is also little appreciation of how lucky the world was when the Soviet Union fell apart in 1991 without some Russian extremists seizing control of the nuclear codes and taking humanity to the brink of extinction. Back then, there was a mix of luck and restrained leadership, especially on the Soviet side.
Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who’s the most right-wing presidential candidate of all? The answer used to be Donald Trump, famous for his naked bigotry toward Mexicans and Muslims. But that was before Hillary Clinton supporters took a page from the old Joe McCarthy handbook and began denouncing their Republican opponent as ‘an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation’ or arguing that criticism of Clinton and NATO somehow emanates out of Moscow. Now comes Clinton’s speech at an American Legion convention in Cincinnati, her most bellicose to date, in which she savages Trump for failing to embrace the ultra-imperialist doctrine of ‘American exceptionalism.’ ‘My opponent in this race has said very clearly that he thinks American exceptionalism is insulting to the rest of the world,’ she said Wednesday. ‘In fact, when Vladimir Putin, of all people, criticized American exceptionalism, my opponent agreed with him, saying, and I quote, ‘if you’re in Russia, you don’t want to hear that America is exceptional.’ Well maybe you don’t want to hear it, but that doesn’t mean it’s not true.’ Good people, she went on, do not take exception to the doctrine – only enemies do:
What do you do when you’re the dictatorial leader of an oppressive government regime looking to maintain power while simultaneously preserving the facade of free and open elections? Well, if you’re the Obama administration then you look for avenues to nationalize state-run election infrastructure. But you can’t just seize control of infrastructure that has been successfully run at the state level for a couple hundred years…that kind of stuff only happens in Venezuela and we’re better than that. No, you need a catalyst for this kind of blatant power grab. “Coincidentally”, a catalyst just like the FBI’s warning a couple of days ago about “foreign hackers [read Putin] penetrating state election systems.” Then, once you’ve defined the super villain, all you need is a couple of political cronies to go on a fear mongering tour to whip the electorate into a frenzy. And wouldn’t you know it…Harry Reid recently did just that by sending a letter to the FBI voicing his “concerns” that the “Russian government” may be looking to tamper with the upcoming presidential election. Per the New York Times, Harry Reid’s letter to the FBI included the following:
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 31, 2016.
Hardly a day goes by without some ‘news’ about the Russian ‘threat,’ and in the past twenty-four hours the hate-on-Russia campaign seems to have picked up speed. After learning from Hillary Clinton that Vladimir Putin is not only responsible for the Trump campaign, but also for the ‘global nationalist movement’ that yanked the British out of the European Union, mainstream media are telling us that Russian interlopers are supposedly invading our electoral process by hacking into voter databases. TheWashington Post ‘reports’: ‘Hackers targeted voter registration systems in Illinois and Arizona, and the FBI alerted Arizona officials in June that Russian hackers were behind the assault on the election system in that state. ‘The bureau told Arizona officials that the threat was ‘credible’ and severe, ranking as ‘an 8 on a scale of 1 to 10,’ said Matt Roberts, a spokesman for the secretary of state’s office. ‘As a result, Secretary of State Michele Reagan shut down the state voter registration system for almost a week.’ So the Russkies are invading the American polity, launching a cybernetic assault on the very basis of our democracy? Really? Well, no, as becomes apparent when the reader gets down in the weeds and exercises his critical faculties, if such exist. Because by the time we arrive at paragraph five of this ‘news’ story, we learn that: ‘It turned out that the hackers did not succeed in compromising the state system or even any county system, but rather had managed to steal the user name and password for one Gila County elections official.’
Three years ago, when a reluctant President Barack Obama was about to launch an attack on Syria, supposedly in retaliation for President Bashar al-Assad crossing a ‘red line’ against using chemical weapons, Obama smelled a rat – or rather he sensed a mousetrap. Advised by some of his intelligence advisers that the evidence blaming the Syrian government for the lethal sarin attack was weak, Obama disappointed many of Washington’s neocons and liberal war hawks, including those in his own administration, by deferring action. He tossed the issue to Congress, thus guaranteeing a delay. Precisely at that key juncture, Russian President Vladimir Putin took the pressure off Obama by persuading the Syrian government to destroy its chemical weapons, which Assad did – while still denying any role in the attack at Ghouta, just outside Damascus, on Aug. 21, 2013. Washington’s hardliners were left aching for their lost opportunity to attack Syria by citing the Ghouta attack as a casus belli. But the evidence suggested, instead, a well-orchestrated Syrian rebel false-flag operation aimed at fabricating a pretext for direct U. S. intervention in the war on Syria. With Putin’s assistance in getting Assad to surrender the chemical weapons, Obama was able to extricate himself from the corner that he had rather clumsily painted himself into with his earlier bravado talk about a ‘red line.’