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Is “America First” Hurting Global Energy Relations?

Is “America First” Hurting Global Energy Relations?

USA

Throughout history the strong bond between the United States and Europe, arguably the world’s most important alliance, has been decisive within the international arena. Massive migration from the ‘old world’ to the ‘new’ during the past centuries has been the reason for sharing important norms and values such as democracy, liberalism, and international trade.

The election of President Donald Trump, however, has put doubt to this alliance, which was the strongest supporter of the rule-based international system of the present day. It has to be seen whether the election of this President is a temporary matter, or that the United states will continue, in some way or another, to choose a more unilateral path.

The bellicose language of President Trump and his opposition to agreements and existing matters of international affairs predating his election, have put him on a collision course with his partners in Europe. The unpredictability of the U.S. President was a reason for European leaders to give him the benefit of the doubt and start with debate instead of confrontation. However, as France’s President Macron’s short ‘bromance’ showed, Trump can hardly be influenced in matters of unambiguous election promises.

European leaders have confronted the U.S. president on several occasions on reasonable terms in order to overcome their differences in international politics. In the case of U.S. withdrawal from the Paris agreement on climate change and the unilateral departure from the JCPOA or the Iran Nuclear Deal showed Trump’s intractable belief for the ‘righteous’ path of the U.S. However, trade disputes hit the interests of European partners more directly and put the Atlantic partnership on a collision course. One country stands to benefit from current developments: Russia.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The World Transformed and No One in America Noticed

The World Transformed and No One in America Noticed

The World Transformed and No One in America Noticed

The world transformed and nobody in the West noticed. India and Pakistan have joined the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. The 17 year-old body since its founding on June 15, 2001 has quietly established itself as the main alliance and grouping of nations across Eurasia. Now it has expanded from six nations to eight, and the two new members are the giant nuclear-armed regional powers of South Asia, India, with a population of 1.324 billion and Pakistan, with 193.2 million people (both in 2016).

In other words, the combined population of the SCO powers or already well over 1.5 billion has virtually doubled at a single stroke.

The long-term global consequences of this development are enormous. It is likely to prove the single most important factor insuring peace and removing the threat of nuclear war over South Asia and from 20 percent of the human race. It now raises the total population of the world in the eight SCO nations to 40 percent, including one of the two most powerful thermonuclear armed nations (Russia) and three other nuclear powers (China, India and Pakistan).

This development is a diplomatic triumph especially for Moscow. Russia has been seeking for decades to ease its longtime close strategic ally India into the SCO umbrella. This vision was clearly articulated by one of Russia’s greatest strategic minds of the 20th century, former Premier and Foreign Minister Yevgeny Primakov, who died in 2015. In the past China quietly but steadfastly blocked the India’s accession, but with Pakistan, China’s ally joining at the same time, the influence of Beijing and Moscow is harmonized.

The move can only boost Russia’s already leading role in the diplomacy and national security of the Asian continent. For both Beijing and Delhi, the road for good relations with each other and the resolution of issues such as sharing the water resources of the Himalayas and investing in the economic development of Africa now runs through Moscow.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Eagle, the Dragon, and the Bear

The Eagle, the Dragon, and the Bear

Does Trump recognize the limits of US power?

Trump’s new world order comes straight from The Godfather. There are three global powers: the US, Russia, and China. None of these powers can militarily defeat either of the other two, and even an alliance among two of them would have trouble defeating the third.

Like Don Corleone, Trump is dividing up the larger territory into smaller, great-power controlled sub-territories. He is tacitly recognizing Russia and China’s dominance in their own spheres of influence, and holding them to account in their territories. The implicit agreement among the three is apparently that each power will, in their, “sphere of influence…enforce peace.”

Trump’s New World Order,” SLL 3/20/18

In one week President Trump confirmed that his first concern is the United States, that he has what may be a workable vision for its place in the world, and he loathes globalism and the globalists. A good measure of his efficacy is the outrage he generates. By that measure, that week was his finest hour…so far.

Europe won’t have a seat at Trump’s great-power table. Its welfare states are addicted to their handouts, deeply in debt, rely on uneven trade arrangements with the US, and have below-replacement birth rates. They are cowed by Soros-sponsored propaganda—Immigration is the answer!—and haven’t shut off the immigrant invasion. Refusing to spend on their own militaries, they’ve used what they save on defense to subsidize welfare spending and state bureaucracies.

They’re ignoring a lesson from history: nations that rely on other nations for their defense generally come to regret it. Instead, they’re wedded to the globalist acronyms: NATO, EU and UN. They have frittered away their power and their glory—Europe’s heritage and civilization—opting for overrun masquerading as assimilation by dogmatic and implacable foes.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Murder of Julian Assange

The Murder of Julian Assange

It was a fool’s errand.

On the day Donald Trump was elected his supporters asked him to pardon the founder and frontman of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange. They flooded social media demanding Assange be allowed to leave the Ecuadorian embassy in London without arrest and extradition to the United States. 

Stone silence from Trump and his administration. 

A few months before the election, WikiLeaks released a searchable archive of over 30,000 emails and attachments taken from Hillary Clinton’s not-so private email server. 

Trump held no aversion to exploiting the emails. He called them the Crooked Hillary emails and said they endangered the national security of the United States. 

Democrats called foul, said Assange had colluded with Putin and the Russians. 

In April, they filed a lawsuit in federal court against the Russian government, the Trump campaign, and WikiLeaks. They argue there was a widespread conspiracy to swing the 2016 election.

They have zero evidence of this. Evidence is no longer required. Accusations alone now serve to take down leaders and destroy careers. 

Julian Assange and WikiLeaks are no longer of use to Donald Trump. 

He dished out pardons to ex-Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio and neocon leaker Scooter Libby. Trump mulled other pardons, including a posthumous one for Muhammad Ali to wipe out his draft dodging conviction. It was reported in June Trump insiders are pushing to pardon the junk bond king Michael Milken and reverse his conviction on securities fraud. The Milken pardon is being pushed by Goldman Sachs alumnus and current Treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin and Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner. 

Meanwhile, Julian Assange is left to twist in the wind. 

Both Trump’s attorney general and his former CIA director, now secretary of state Mike Pompeo want Assange extradited to the United States where he will face trial and possible execution for espionage. 

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Report: New US Coalition Airstrikes On Government Positions In Eastern Syria

Though as yet unconfirmed in other international sources, Russian and Syrian state media are reporting major US coalition airstrikes in eastern Syria which left multiple civilians and at least one Syrian soldier dead.  

Syria’s SANA reports eight civilians killed and many injured during US coalition airstrikes on al-Sha’afa village in Deir Ezzor countryside on Thursday. 

The unconfirmed breaking story cites “civil sources” in the region of the strikes to report that “at least eight citizens were killed, many others were injured and huge destruction affected the houses after warplanes of the US-led international coalition carried out many raids on the citizens’ houses.”

Early this week the Syrian government accused the US of conducting massive airstrikes on government forces near Abu Kamal along the Iraq-Syria border, after which the US coalition spokesman issued a formal denial. An unnamed US official later told CNNthat Israel actually carried out the attack, which reportedly killed scores of Syrian Army and Iraqi paramilitary forces carrying out an anti-ISIS campaign in the area on Sunday.

Neither Israel nor the US officially acknowledged responsibility for the Sunday airstrikes, and no official recognition of Thursday’s alleged strikes has been forthcoming.

Meanwhile Sputnik reports on what appears to be *a separate incident:*

At least one Syrian soldier was killed in a US-led coalition airstrike on Syrian army positions in the east of Homs province on Thursday, a Syrian field commander told Sputnik.

“The combat planes belonging to the coalition led by the United States, attacked the army position in Jabal Ghurab, some 150 kilometers [93 miles] east of Palmyra near the border with Iraq,” the commander said.

“One serviceman was killed and several others wounded,” he added.

A CNN reporter confirms that hostilities indeed broke out in the region:

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Diseased, Lying, Condition of America’s ‘News’Media

The Diseased, Lying, Condition of America's ‘News’Media

The Diseased, Lying, Condition of America’s ‘News’Media

Both President Trump and former President Obama are commonly said in America’s ‘news’ media to be or to have been “ceding Syria to Russia” or “ceding Syria to Russia and Iran,” or similar allegations. They imply that ‘we’ own (or have some right to control) Syria. That’s not only a lie; it is a very evil and harmful one, dangerously goading the US President to go even more against Russia (and Iran) (and, of course, against Syria) than has yet been done — but the ‘news’media don’t care about that evil, and that falsehood, and that dangerousness — they do it anyway, and none of them attacks the others for perpetrating this vicious war-mongering lie, that lying provocation to yet more and worse war than already exists there. And the fact that none is exposing the fraudulence of the others on this important matter, is a yet-bigger additional scandal, beyond and amplifying the media’s common lying itself. Because they all function here like a mob, goading to more and worse invasions, and doing it on the the basis of dangerous lies — that America, and not the Syrians themselves, own Syria.

These lies simply assume that America (probably referring to the US Government, but whatever) somehow “has” or else “had” Syria (so that America can now ‘cede’ it, to anyone); and this assumption (that the US somehow owns Syria) is not only an imperialistic one (which is bad, and wrong, in itself), but it reduces to nothingness the rights (in the minds of the American public) of the Syrian people, to control their own land. That lie is what America’s ‘news’media won’t expose, but instead they all cooperate with it, when they’re not actually participating, themselves, in spreading these lies.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Russia Warns: Increased US Marine Corps Presence In Norway Could Be Viewed As An Attack

Russia is hinting that a new wave of U.S. Marines in Norway, near the Russian border in the Troms region, could be viewed as an attack, the MarineTimes reported.

Last week, the Russian Embassy in Norway warned of consequences for the latest U.S. troop buildup, and on Friday, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova criticized Norway for its expanded military cooperation with Washington.

A Marine with Marine Rotational Force-Europe 18.1 sends live rounds down range while conducting a squad attack during winter warfare training at Haltdalen Training Center, Norway, April 18, 2018. (Gunnery Sgt. Clinton Firstbrook/Marine Corps/MarineTimes)

According to Zakharova, the policy of the Norwegian government to support a doubling of Marines “in the country and deploy them near the border with Russia undermines mutual confidence.” Furthermore, she argues, the Marines’ presence in the Arctic country — a few hundred miles from the Russian border, in fact, could be an attack.

The statements come as the Norwegian government intends to add another 400 U.S. Marines to Norway before the most significant military exercise since the Cold War this fall.

However, the Marines are not permanently stationed in the country, only on a “rotational deployment,” the Norwegian defense ministry recently stressed.

“We paid attention to the reports of the Norwegian Ministry of Defense released on June 13, which contain Oslo’s agreement to double the US Marine Corps stationed on the Norwegian territory from 330 to 700 people, prolong their rotation presence there for five years, expand its footprint to the north, closer to the border with our country, and create infrastructure for warplanes at the expense of the US under the implementation of the so-called European initiative to deter Russia,” Zakharova said.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

It’s Time To Start Getting Enraged At What Western Imperialists Have Done To Syria

It’s Time To Start Getting Enraged At What Western Imperialists Have Done To Syria

Rumors are again swirling of an impending false flag chemical weapons attack in Syria, just as they did shortly before the highly suspicious Douma case in April. Warnings from Syrian and Russian intelligence, as well as US war ship movements and an uptick in US funding for the Al Qaeda propaganda firm known as the White Helmets, give these warnings a fair bit of weight. Since the US war machine has both a known regime change agenda in Syria and an extensive history of using liespropaganda and false flags to justify military interventionism, there’s no legitimate reason to give it the benefit of the doubt on this one. These warnings are worth taking seriously.

So some people are understandably nervous. The way things are set up now, it is technically possible for the jihadist factions inside Syria and their allied imperialist intelligence and defense agencies to keep targeting civilians with chemical weapons and blaming the Assad government for them until they pull one off that is so outrageous that it enables the mass media to manufacture public support for a full-scale assault on Damascus. This would benefit both the US-centralized empire which has been plotting regime change in Syria for decades and the violent Islamist extremists who seek control of the region. It also creates the very real probability of a direct military confrontation with Syria’s allies, including Russia.

But the appropriate response to the threat of a world war erupting in Syria is not really fear, if you think about it. The most appropriate response to this would be unmitigated, howling rage at the western sociopaths who created this situation in the first place.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Russia Sells Off Record Amount of US Treasury Bonds

Russia Sells Off Record Amount of US Treasury Bonds

Russia Sells Off Record Amount of US Treasury Bonds

The US Treasury Department report for April published on June 15 revealed that Russia sold $47.4 billion out of the $96.1 it had held in Treasury bonds (T-bonds). In March, Moscow cut its Treasury holdings by $1.6 billion. In February, Russia reduced its bond portfolio by $9.3 billion. Other holders did it too. Japan sold off about $12 billion, China liquidated roughly $7 billion. Ireland ditched over $17 billion.

The tariff wars unleashed by Washington stirred fears that financial markets may be in for a rough ride with American treasuries dumped by some partners, including such major holders as China and Japan, each holding over $1 trillion in bonds.

Russia has cut its holdings in American securities following numerous rounds of sanctions imposed by Washington against Moscow and amid the ongoing trade wars between the US and its allies and partners.

This is bad news and ominous warning for Washington. The foreign demand is critical to offset an expected surge in federal borrowing needs. The Treasury Department needs to finance the huge spending bill along with tax cuts that were passed by Congress in December 2017. It plans to auction off around $1.4 trillion in treasuries this year with a glut of sellers and a shortage of buyers in the bond market the government plans to add $600 billion to.

The companies buy back their own shares to boost capitalization. The stock prices are overvalued. The FRS monetary policy does not spur economic growth amid the growing national debt. The bond market does not look attractive anymore. Looks like there is a big change on the horizon that nations will dump US debt in case of trade war.

And the supremacy of the US dollar is not as solid as many people believe it is. A sell-by date as a global reserve currency is looming. The process of de-dollarization is gradually gaining momentum.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Chrystia Freeland Fails to See the Emerging Multipolar World

Chrystia Freeland Fails to See the Emerging Multipolar World

In a strange case of reversed roles Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chrystia Freeland, tried to convince US president Donald Trump to return to his lost path of globalization and international trade agreements in an impassionate speech she gave at the Foreign Policy Forum last June 13 in Washington D.C.

Ms. Freeland seems to have a good reputation in some circles in Washington. At least enough to get her centre stage and a nomination as “diplomat of the year.” Though she should know that the recognition she received was not meant to acknowledge necessarily her achievements but rather to use her as an “international voice” on behalf of some US sectors that dissent with Donald Trump’s foreign policy – more specifically, those aspects of US foreign policy that are perceived to hurt business such as international trade and tariffs. Ms. Freeland obliged and that was precisely the focus of her speech.

We don’t know the impact that Ms. Freeland’s speech has had on Donald Trump. But her message would have been fitting had she been on the same stage with the likes of Ronald Reagan whom she did praise once.

What we do know is that her speech – probably meant to be inspirational – was full of liberal, capitalist and imperial rhetoric, and showed little understanding of the geopolitical realities of today. Her tenacious defense of the virtues of capitalism lacked vision and placed her right back at the time of the old Cold War with the only exception of authoritarianism being the nemesis instead of communism. She pointed her accusatory finger at Venezuela, Russia and China as examples of current unruly countries that do not follow her image of international order.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Unprecedented Israeli Strikes Target Iraqi Shia Militias In Syria

A day after a mysterious airstrike close to the Iraq-Syria border reportedly killed over 30 Syrian government soldiers and Iraqi paramilitary forces backed by Iran, a US official has told CNN the attack was carried out by Israel and not by the US coalition.

Syrian state media blamed the strike on the US-led coalition — though in the immediate aftermath any level of confirmation or evidence was hard to come by. The claims prompted the US coalition spokesman to issue a formal denial, calling Syria’s accusation “misinformation” as US-backed SDF forces are only operating east of the Euphrates, and not near Abu Kamal, which lies west, according to the statement.

If confirmed it would mark the first time in the war that Iraq’s paramilitary forces have been targeted by Israel. The Iran-backed Popular Mobilization Units (PMU, or PMF) have increasingly coordinated with the Syrian Army as well as pro-Syrian irregular Shia fighters during anti-ISIS operations along Syria’s eastern border of late.

The incident marks the second time in three weeks that the Syrian Army has accused the US Coalition of bombing their troops in southeast Syria; however it is uncertain as yet how Damascus will respond to this new claim of Israeli responsibility.

The CNN source is an unnamed US official, who gave no other details on the strike, including how many jets conducted the mission or the flight path into the Iraq-Syria border area, though CNN notes, “The area is some distance from Israel and Israeli jets would have had to overcome significant logistical hurdles to strike that area.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Russia Sells Off Record Amount of US Treasury Bonds

Russia Sells Off Record Amount of US Treasury Bonds

Russia Sells Off Record Amount of US Treasury Bonds

The US Treasury Department report for April published on June 15 revealed that Russia sold $47.4 billion out of the $96.1 it had held in Treasury bonds (T-bonds). In March, Moscow cut its Treasury holdings by $1.6 billion. In February, Russia reduced its bond portfolio by $9.3 billion. Other holders did it too. Japan sold off about $12 billion, China liquidated roughly $7 billion. Ireland ditched over $17 billion.

The tariff wars unleashed by Washington stirred fears that financial markets may be in for a rough ride with American treasuries dumped by some partners, including such major holders as China and Japan, each holding over $1 trillion in bonds.

Russia has cut its holdings in American securities following numerous rounds of sanctions imposed by Washington against Moscow and amid the ongoing trade wars between the US and its allies and partners.

This is bad news and ominous warning for Washington. The foreign demand is critical to offset an expected surge in federal borrowing needs. The Treasury Department needs to finance the huge spending bill along with tax cuts that were passed by Congress in December 2017. It plans to auction off around $1.4 trillion in treasuries this year with a glut of sellers and a shortage of buyers in the bond market the government plans to add $600 billion to.

The companies buy back their own shares to boost capitalization. The stock prices are overvalued. The FRS monetary policy does not spur economic growth amid the growing national debt. The bond market does not look attractive anymore. Looks like there is a big change on the horizon that nations will dump US debt in case of trade war.

And the supremacy of the US dollar is not as solid as many people believe it is. A sell-by date as a global reserve currency is looming. The process of de-dollarization is gradually gaining momentum.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

US To Double Number Of Marines In Norway To Counter Russia, Before Massive Military Exercise

The Norwegian government intends to add another 400 U.S. Marines to Norway before the most significant military exercise since the Cold War this fall, according to the country’s Ministry of Defense.

Currently, about 330 Marines from the 1st Battalion, 6th Marines (1/6), an infantry battalion in the U.S. Marine Corps based in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, make up the rotational presence for training and exercise in the country. The influx of new Marines are expected to arrive from Romania and would increase the total number to 700 for a period of five years.

The new force of Marines will be situated in Setermoen, Norway, according to the Defense Ministry.

This fall, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) will be leading a massive military exercise across the entire country of Norway, an unprecedented maneuver not seen since the days of the Cold War. It seems like Washington and Norway are making the preliminary adjustments before a total of 35,000 troops from 30 different countries kick off the exercise, called Trident Juncture.

Map detailing plans for upcoming military exercise: 

Speaking at the Naval War College Tuesday, General Robert B. Neller said the approval for additional Marines in Norway cleared on Tuesday. Neller has been an advocate for sending Marines to extreme cold-weather environments for Arctic warfare training.


The government of has approved ~400 additional @USMC Marines to be posted in the at Setermoen in Troms, Norway. Norway shares a 122-mile border with Russia and the new location will be bring US Marines closer to that border. There are currently ~300 US Marines in Norway


The Marines are currently on six-month rotations to Norway, where soldiers are preparing for cold-weather warfare to counter Russia.

According to the map below, Norway shares a 122-mile border with Russia and the Setermoen region is roughly 250 miles from the border.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Yellow Journalism and the New Cold War

Yellow Journalism and the New Cold War


Like Saddam Hussein a decade and a half ago, Russia and its President Vladimir Putin have been repeatedly vilified in the Western media over the last five years, helping to mobilize popular support for the reemergence of a new Cold War.

Best-selling author Dan Talbot has called it in “one of the biggest fake news operations comparable to the yellow journalism promoted by the Hearst papers which sold military intervention in the Spanish-American War.”

This past Sunday, the British newspapers were filled with screaming headlines about a leading financier of the Brexit campaign’s alleged “Kremlin connection.”

Leaked emails allegedly show how Arron Banks, a millionaire businessman who helped fund Brexit, had been offered a business deal involving six Russian gold mines and had undisclosed meetings with the Russian ambassador to Britain – set up by a suspected Russian spy – and paid a previous unknown visit to Moscow at the height of the campaign.

Richard Kerbaj and a team of Sunday Times’journalists editorialized that “the revelations raise explosive questions about attempts by Moscow to influence the [Brexit] referendum results.”

The cover story featured a large photo of Donald Trump with Banks, a business associates, Andy Wigmore, and Nigel Farange, the right wing pro-Brexit leader.

The meeting was said to have been consumed over a “boozy lunch” with the Russian ambassador, Alexander Yakovenko, who allegedlyproduced a bottle of vodka that “was one of the three in a batch made for Joseph Stalin personally.”

Banks said that “by mid-afternoon, everyone was quite merry and diplomatic protocols were rapidly falling by the wayside.”

Reporter Isabel Oakeshott, who helped break the story, warned readers that “warfare has never simply been about bombs and bullets. Our adversaries [also] seek to weaken us by cultivating relationships with political figures and attempting to turn them into agents of influence. Russia is expert at this. The offer of lucrative business opportunities is a typical tool.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Letter From Britain: An Establishment Blinded By Russophobia

Letter From Britain: An Establishment Blinded By Russophobia

A British elite challenged by large parts of the British population is rallying around trumped-up fear of Russia as a means of protecting its interests, as Alexander Mercouris explains.


Hostility to Russia is one of the most enduring, as well as one of the most destructive, realities of British life. Its persistence is illustrated by one of the most interesting but least reported facts about the Skripal affair.

This is that Sergey Skripal, the Russian former GRU operative who was the main target of the recent Salisbury poisoning attack, was recruited by British intelligence and became a British spy in 1995, four years after the USSR collapsed, at a time when the Cold War was formally over.

In 1995 Boris Yeltsin was President of Russia, Communism was supposedly defeated, the once mighty Soviet military was no more, and a succession of pro-Western governments in Russia were attempting unsuccessfully to carry out IMF proposed ‘reforms’. In a sign of the new found friendship which supposedly existed between Britain and Russia the British Queen toured Moscow and St. Petersburg the year before.

Yet notwithstanding all the appearances of friendship, and despite the fact that Russia in 1995 posed no conceivable threat to Britain, it turns out that British intelligence was still up to its old game of recruiting Russian spies to spy on Russia.

Britain’s Long History of Russophobia

This has in fact been the constant pattern of Anglo-Russian relations ever since the Napoleonic Wars.

Brief periods of seeming friendship – often brought about by a challenge posed by a common enemy – alternating with much longer periods of often intense hostility.

This hostility – at least from the British side – is not easy to understand.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai II: Exodus
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