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Russia Warns Of ‘Precise And Painful’ Response To Any Future US Sanctions

Russia Warns Of ‘Precise And Painful’ Response To Any Future US Sanctions

Russia is continuing to warn the West of further attacks against Russia. Whether it be in the form of missiles or sanctions, the former Soviet Union doesn’t seem like they wish to play “war games” any longer.

The United States this month added several Russian firms and officials to a sanctions blacklist in response to what it said were the Kremlin’s “malign activities.” Moscow says those sanctions are unlawful and has warned that it will retaliate in a “painful” manner.

“No one should be under any illusions,” said Valentina Matvienko, who is closely aligned with the Kremlin, was quoted as saying by the Interfax News Agency.Matvienko, the speaker of the Russian upper house of parliament, said on Wednesday that Moscow’s response to any United States sanctions will be targeted and painful, Russian news agencies reported.

“Russia’s response to the sanctions, our so-called counter-sanctions, will be precise, painful, and without question sensitive for exactly those countries that imposed them [the sanctions] on Russia,” she was quoted as saying, according to Reuters.   “Sanctions are a double-edged sword and those who impose them should understand that sanctions against countries, especially those like Russia, will carry with them risks of serious consequences for those who impose them,” Matvienko added.

Lawmakers in the lower house of the Russian parliament have drawn up legislationthat would give the government powers to ban or restrict imports of U.S. goods and services ranging from medicines to software and rocket engines. However, the Kremlin has not yet said if it backs such measures.

U.S. President Donald Trump mentioned the joint U.S., French, and British military operation last weekend that struck several sites in Syria to punish the Russian-backed government of President Bashar Assad for an apparent chemical attack that killed civilians. Trump said the strike was “absolute precision.”

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The Road to 2025 (Part 2) – Russia and China Have Had Enough

The Road to 2025 (Part 2) – Russia and China Have Had Enough

Part 1 of this series focused on how the U.S. empire no longer provides any real benefit to the average American citizen. Rather, the spoils of overseas wars, the domestic surveillance state and an overall corrupt economy are being systematically funneled to a smaller and smaller group of generally unsavory characters. The public’s starting to recognize this reality, which is why we saw major populist movements emerge on both the traditional right and left of the political spectrum in 2016.

As millions of Americans emerge from their long slumber, much of the world’s been aware of this reality for a long time. They don’t see the U.S. as a magnanimous humanitarian empire, that’s a fairytale more suited for children’s books and the mass media. In fact, it seems clear that the billions of humans who live in various sovereign nations around the world would certainly prefer to be in control of their own destinies as opposed to mere vassal states of the U.S., they simply haven’t possessed the military or economic power to stand up and chart their own course. But things are changing.

The most significant geopolitical change of the 21st century is the emergence of China, and the reemergence of Russia, as globally significant military powers. This is the core driver behind the establishment’s panic about Russia. It has nothing to do with Putin’s authoritarianism or human rights abuses, that’s just marketing directed at a heretofore extremely gullible public.

In reality, those determined to perpetuate a unipolar world run by the U.S. are appalled and concerned about the fact Russia was able to become involved in Syria and prevent another regime change operation. Russia very publicly, and very successfully, stood up and said “no” to U.S. imperial ambitions in Syria. This isn’t just historically significant, it’s seen as blasphemous and recalcitrant by the U.S. status quo.

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Ukraine’s NATO Bid Risks Even Worse U.S.-Russia Ties

Ukraine’s NATO Bid Risks Even Worse U.S.-Russia Ties

Ukraine has made new moves towards joining the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, which would cross a Russian “red line” and further deteriorate U.S.-Russia relations, argues Will Porter.


It’s been four years since the hectic “Euromaidan” protest movement culminated in a coup that deposed Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych. Though civil war grinds on in the eastern half of the country, Ukraine has wandered in and out of American news cycles since the dramatic change of government in Kiev.

But a more recent development has implications that are rarely explored in American media, despite what it could mean for broader U.S. international relations. Ukraine is vying to take its place as NATO’s newest member state, a move that could seriously escalate tensions between Washington and Moscow beyond their current high point.

“It’s safe to say that Russia would be, and has been, opposed to NATO membership for Ukraine,” James Carden, former advisor to the State Department’s U.S.-Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission, said in an email exchange.

Neighboring states such as Ukraine and Georgia, Carden added, “are red lines for Russia and we should take them at their word.”

While Ukraine’s original application to join the alliance came in 2008, subsequent political complications put the issue on the back burner. It wasn’t until 2014 that the Ukrainian parliament voted to end the country’s “non-aligned” status and renew the push for membership.

Poroshenko: Drive towards Nato on Facebook. (Ukrainian Govt. Photo)

In a March Facebook post, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said Ukraine’s “next ambition” on its path to membership was to seek a Membership Action Plan (MAP). Countries seeking to join NATO must go through a multi-step process that ensures the prospective member meets the alliance’s various obligations in areas ranging from military spending to law.

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Is It Time for A Nice, “Little” Nuclear War?

Is It Time for A Nice, “Little” Nuclear War?

I have been accused by many of being cynical. My accusers make this claim in the context of my being “pessimistic, sardonic, or negative.” Having been a middle-school student crouching under his desk with a piece of notebook paper over his head during the “Cuban Missile Crisis,” a teenager expelled from high school for organizing a student walk-out against the Vietnam War, a witness to the Nixon “presidency,” and all and sundry since, I prefer to regard myself as a realist. A pessimistic, cynical realist.

I admit, I have devolved over the time since middle-school from a true believer in the myth of America as world policewoman, to a defender of the US Constitution as the last hope to avoid nuclear annihilation. Now, I see, I may have been wrong. Rather than harp on the “negative” aspects of nuclear war, I should have focused on how a “nice, little nuclear war” may actually be a good thing.

Recent events in the Mideast, Syria, Jordon, and Israel indicate, to my cynical nature, that the USA may get the answer to all those “Nuke ‘Em” prayers so many Americans have been trumpeting for so long. If things “go wrong” with Syria, a “nice, little nuclear war” could be in the cards. You have Syria, with Russian troops present, being struck by US cruise missiles. This is dangerous enough. But in addition, you have the USA building up troops in Jordan as reported by the Marine Times on Friday the 13th of April, 2018:

As tensions come to a boil in Syria over an alleged chemical attack, thousands of U.S. troops and Marines will be gathering in neighboring Jordan for the start of a major training exercise.

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

BBC Reporter Discourages Syria Questions Due To “Information War” With Russia 

BBC Reporter Discourages Syria Questions Due To “Information War” With Russia 

A BBC interview is making the rounds today among opponents of western interventionism in Syria. The subject of the interview, Admiral Alan West, voiced some much needed skepticism about the establishment narrative around the alleged gas attack in Douma. Everybody’s talking about it because West is an empire loyalist that nobody in their right mind would accuse of being an “Assad apologist” or “useful idiot of the Kremlin”, as anyone else who doesn’t swallow the official story hook, line and sinker is uniformly labeled.

West made some sensible comments about the White Helmets and the fact that Jaysh al-Islam had far more incentive to stage such an attack than Assad had to perpetrate it. Even more helpful was his personal account of having been aggressively pressured to make false reports about the success of the British bombing campaign in Bosnia, suggesting that those pressures can lead to bad intelligence and erroneous military responses.

“I just wonder, you know we’ve had some bad experiences on intelligence,” West said. “When I was chief of defense intelligence, I had huge pressure put on me politically to try and say that our bombing campaign in Bosnia was achieving all sorts of things which it wasn’t. I was put under huge pressure, so I know the things that can happen with intelligence.”

So that’s a very significant addition to the dialogue. For me, though, the most interesting comments made in that interview came not from West, but from the BBC reporter who was interviewing him.

In the latter half of the interview, BBC’s Annita McVeigh asked the following questions after West’s comment about Bosnia:

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

WW3 Alert: NATO Readies 35,000 Troops For Combat Amidst ‘Russia Tensions’

WW3 Alert: NATO Readies 35,000 Troops For Combat Amidst ‘Russia Tensions’

Citing increasing tensions with Russia, NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) has begun to prepare 35,000 troops for combat.  The troops will participate in the largest training exercise conducted since the end of the Cold War.

NATO commanders revealed the thousands of soldiers from 30 different countries are expected to take part in the Trident Juncture drill in Norway. Massive parts of the Scandinavian country will be impacted by the influx of around 130 warplanes and 60 warships, reported The Daily Star. Trident Juncture will be aimed at rehearsing for any potential threat posed by Russia when it kicks off in October.

The United States Marines also maintain a constant presence in Norway, with tanks and other military hardware stashed away in frozen caves.

War games of this scale have not been seen in decades as United Nation chiefs admitted the Cold War is back “with a vengeance” and NATO forces will take part in what has been described as a “big important exercise.” But some, such as former Soviet Union general think tensions are now much tighter since the Cold War and a nuclear conflict is inevitable.

Fears of conflict have been renewed as Russia warned the West is approaching a “red line” following US-led airstrikes in Syria.  NATO nations have regularly accused Vladimir Putin’s war machine of “aggression” by moving troops to the edge of Europe. Russian commanders deny an aggressive intent and say their military build-up is in response to NATO’s rhetoric.

Syria has become a flashpoint between the West and Russia after US President Donald Trump’s attack on Putin’s pal Bashar al-Assad. Top Russian lawmaker Konstantin Kosachev said Russia will get tougher if “red lines” continue to be crossed. “There is definitely a clear-cut awareness of the situation in Syria. That understanding is the red lines beyond which Russia’s reaction will clearly get tougher if these red lines are crossed.”

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Returning to the Commonplace

Returning to the Commonplace

There are times when the twilight of the American century takes on a quality of surreal absurdity I can only compare to French existentialist theater or the better productions of Monty Python’s Flying Circus, and this is one of them. Over the weekend, in response to a chemical-weapons incident in Syria that may or may not have happened—governments on all sides are making strident claims, but nobody’s offering evidence either way—US, British, and French military units launched more than a hundred state-of-the-art cruise missiles at three Syrian targets that may or may not have had anything to do with chemical weapons, damaging a few buildings and inflicting injuries on three people.

James Howard Kunstler, in a recent and appropriately blistering essay, termed this “kabuki warfare.”  It’s an apt term, though I confess the situation makes me think rather more of John Cleese and the Ministry of Silly (Bombing) Runs, or perhaps a play by Camus in which Bashar al-Assad and Vladimir Putin sit around talking while they wait for the endlessly delayed arrival of an American cruise missile named Godot. What, exactly, was accomplished by Donald Trump’s red-faced bluster, the heavily rehearsed outrage and cringing subservience of our European lapdogs-cum-allies, and all those colorful photo ops of missiles blasting off?

To be sure, there’s nothing even remotely new about the latest skit from this transatlantic flying circus. For most of a decade now the US military has been carrying out a similar sort of warfare against jihadi militias in Syria and Iraq, pretending to fight Islamic State in much the same way a mime pretends to be trapped in a phone booth—a habit pointed up by the way that the Russian military, which has a less ineffectual notion of warfare, pushed Islamic State into prompt collapse by having their cruise missiles and bombs actually hit something.

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

China Prepares “Emergency Response Plan” Amid Escalating US Trade War

While in recent days the growing trade war between China and the US has moved off the front page of market concerns despite now daily skirmishes such as today’s anti-dumping probe launch by the US into US steel wheels which followed a Chinese 179% tariff on US sorghum imports which in turn was in response to the US banning exports to Chinese telecom giant ZTE, in recent days China has drawn up comprehensive list of urgent measures as the war of words over US-China trade relations has threatened to escalate into open economic conflict with each side threatening to levy heavy tariffs and taxes on each other’s imports.

Commenting on the recent trade hostilities, National Development and Reform Commission spokesman Zeng Peiyan said on Wednesday that Beijing has all the political instruments it needs to respond to this trade conflict with the United States and minimize its economic effect.

“We have an emergency response plan at various levels and political means to retaliate to the trade challenges, initiated by the United States,” Zeng added.

He stressed that the trade conflict would affect the country’s economy only partially and that China “has the confidence, potential and ability to ensure the stable functioning of the country’s economy.”

Meanwhile, according to Reuters, Beijing’s international trade representatives have held multiple meetings with their counterparts in leading European economies as China, too, seek support in its trade brawl with the US. Recall the US was supposed to do the same with Trump canvassing support for the growing world trade war in Latin America last week, however he was held back by the diversionary Syrian airstikes.

China however, was not detained and Beijing officials met ambassadors from France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Spain and Italy last Thursday and Friday to propose a firewall against Trump’s protectionism, Reuters reported.

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

The Road to 2025 (Part 1) – Prepare for a Multi-Polar World

The Road to 2025 (Part 1) – Prepare for a Multi-Polar World

If pressed to describe what I think the next several years will look like as concisely as possible, I’d simply provide the following quote, often misattributed to Lenin:

“There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.”

There will be many such weeks from now until 2025, with the end result an emergence of a multi-polar world that will permanently unseat the unipolar U.S. imperial paradigm.

Since World War 2, the U.S. has successfully sustained a position of global dominance unlike anything the world’s ever seen. Virtually each and every corner of the planet has been subject to inescapable and overwhelming American influence, both culturally and economically. This root of this power didn’t just emerge from GDP strength and the USD, but from Hollywood, popular music and tv shows. The impact of the U.S. empire on the planet over the past 70 years has been extraordinary but, like all things, it too shall pass. I believe this end will be realized by around 2025.

When I say this sort of stuff people think I’m calling for the end of the world. I suppose that’s what it may feel like to many, because a paradigm change of this magnitude will indeed have monumental global implications. Yet the world will go on, it’ll just be very different place. That said, Americans should not see this as an apocalyptic thing. It’s not healthy or sustainable for one nation to dominate the planet in such a manner. Many of us like to think that a benevolent global empire led by philosopher kings is just fine, but the problem is this is utter fantasy. What happens in real life, to quote Lord Acton, is  that “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

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China’s “Nuclear Option” in the Trade War

china trade war usa nuclear

China’s “Nuclear Option” in the Trade War

The United States has been interested in economic relations with China since 1784, shortly after the American War for Independence.

At first, this interest was purely economic, because the British refused to deal with the U.S. (for obvious reasons). So the Americans bought Chinese goods, and the Chinese bought from the Americans.

And for most of U.S. history, things were good. But in 1949, with the rise of Mao and communist China, tensions rose.

Fast-forward to today’s relationship, as described by The Heritage Foundation:

Today, the United States and the People’s Republic of China are like the European great powers of a century ago. They trade with each other, but do not trust each other. They have the largest economies in the world, and they have a financial and trading relationship that shapes the global economy. But at the same time, they have different, and often opposing, views on many national security and foreign policy issues.

This lack of trust in their trading relationship mainly stems from China’s views on communism, their endorsement of certain people, and security issues.

Now it looks like that trading relationship is heating up dramatically…

China recently announced tariffs on 106 U.S. products like soy, cars, and some chemicals. As Sam Meredith explains on CNBC.com, this came 24 hours after the U.S. slapped tariffs on a list of Chinese imports in a $50 billion crackdown on unfair trade practices:

The effective start date for the new charges is not announced, though China’s Ministry of Commerce says the tariffs are designed to target up to $50 billion of U.S. products annually. The 25 percent levy on U.S. imports includes products such as soybeans, cars and whiskey.

This announcement caused a 450-point drop in the Dow Jones.

In retaliation, the Trump Administration then doubled down on its initial tariffs, imposing another $100 billion in tariffs on Chinese goods.

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

Syrian Conflict Is A Distraction From A Secret War

Syrian Conflict Is A Distraction From A Secret War

Back in March 2010 I published an article titled ‘Will Globalists Trigger Yet Another World War?’under the pen name Giordano Bruno describing what I felt would be the most effective triggers for a new global conflict. In that article I pointed to Syria as the primary powder keg, followed in close second by Iran and Yemen. This was written well before the Syrian civil war was engineered by establishment interests. I focused on potential false flags that could be used as a rationale by the U.S. or Israel to invade the region, thereby giving Russia and China reason to retaliate, for the most part economically. Ultimately, this scenario would play out perfectly as a cover for the deliberate collapse of the U.S. dollar as the world reserve currency.

In August 2012 I reiterated my concerns in an article titled Syria And Iran Dominoes Lead To World War, right after the Syrian civil war began to gain momentum.

Needless to say, I have not changed my general thesis since those days; however, I would like to touch upon certain factors now that the dangers I examined in those articles are mostly coming to pass in 2018.

First, no hard evidence has been produced by western intelligence agencies to support the claim that Bashar Al Assad used chemical weapons against his own people. None. Therefore, there is no basis for the latest missile attacks on the regime. This same exact false flag tactic was attempted under the Obama administration to draw the U.S. people into open war in Syria, and it failed. Now the chemical weapon card is being played again, this time with a “conservative” president. The establishment must be hoping that Republicans will find excitement in becoming the war party so long after the Bush years.

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

The Neocons’ Real Plan for Syria Emerges from the Lack of Rubble

The Neocons’ Real Plan for Syria Emerges from the Lack of Rubble

I told you over the weekend that Trump’s presidency was over.  As a practical matter it is.  His yielding to his ‘advisors’ on every foreign policy issue makes it clear that he can’t or won’t stand up to the relentless pressure to do what his instincts tell him.

This morning’s article at the Deep State Washington Post paints a very clear picture of what the situation is.  The advisors whose loyalties are dubious run the show.  Their thinking has not evolved one whit from previous administrations.

Remember what Russian President Vladimir Putin always says, “Presidents change. Policies do not.”

Case in point they manipulated Trump into over-reacting to the Skripal poisoning by ousting 60 Russian diplomats, even though Trump clearly wanted to match Germany and France.

The United States, they explained, would be ousting roughly the same number of Russians as its European allies — part of a coordinated move to punish Moscow for the poisoning of a former Russian spy and his daughter on British soil.

“We’ll match their numbers,” Trump instructed, according to a senior administration official. “We’re not taking the lead. We’re matching.”

The next day, when the expulsions were announced publicly, Trump erupted, officials said. To his shock and dismay, France and Germany were each expelling only four Russian officials — far fewer than the 60 his administration had decided on.

You can almost see the evil glee on the part of the WaPo writer and Trump’s staffers who misled him into signing an order they knew he disagreed with.

And this is why Trump is not president currently.  This is not the first time he’s been backed into a bad decision by the nest of vipers in his administration.

And he won’t be until he removes the worst people from his cabinet.  Unfortunately, the trend on that front is definitely not our friend.

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How US Has Virtually Destroyed UN

How US Has Virtually Destroyed UN

How US Has Virtually Destroyed UN

Under President Donald Trump, the US has basically eliminated the only real international authority the UN used to have. Here is how this was done:

The equivalent, in international law, to a domestic-law crime involving murder, rape, and theft, is an international invasion that’s purely for aggressive purposes and not at all authentically a defensive act against an authentic foreign threat that was coming from the invaded foreign country. Consequently, for the US Government now to have removed the UN from any authority over international invasions, is, in domestic-law equivalency, like removing a national government from authority regarding murders, rapes, and thefts, which occur inside that nation. Such a ‘government’ is no government at all. But, tragically, this is what has happened; and, so, we are now careening into World War III, in this international “Wild West” world, which we live in (and may soon die in, as things thus head into WW III).

The US Government no longer even nominally cares whether or not the UN authorizes its invasions; but, as recently as 2003, it used to, even if only nominally, care. The US has thus effectively disgarded the UN altogether, whenever violating the UN is the only way to impose its will against a given target-country.

In late 2002 and early 2003, US President George W. Bush nominally expressed a desire for the UN to authorize an invasion of Iraq, but failed to receive that authorization and then did the invasion anyway, along with only UK, Australia, and Poland, joining the US-led gang, in this destruction of Iraq.

At a press conference on 6 March 2003, just 14 days before he ordered the UN weapons-inspectors to leave Iraq so that he could invade Iraq on March 20th (as he did), Bush said:

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Is the “Petro-Yuan” a Credible Challenge to Dollar Supremacy?

Is the “Petro-Yuan” a Credible Challenge to Dollar Supremacy?

Wolf Richter with Jim Goddard on This Week in Money:

China latest effort to get its currency to be used globally is the “petro-yuan.” Is it a credible challenge to the supremacy of the US dollar? If China dumped US Treasuries, what would that accomplish? And more…

Central banks around the world seem leery about the Chinese yuan. Read…  What Could Dethrone the Dollar as Top Reserve Currency?

Trump’s Disastrous Syria Attack

Trump’s Disastrous Syria Attack

Over the weekend, President Trump celebrated firing more than 100 missiles into Syria by Tweeting, “Mission Accomplished!” They say if you cannot learn from history you are condemned to repeat it. So I guess we are repeating it.

We all remember that “Mission Accomplished” was the banner behind then-President Bush as he gloated aboard a US navy ship that the war in Iraq had been won. After his “victory,” however, some 4,000 US military personnel were killed, perhaps a million Iraqis were killed, and the country’s infrastructure and social fabric were so badly destroyed that they probably can never be repaired.

Actually, there is much about the US attack on Syria that reminds us of Iraq.

With Iraq, the US moved in to start bombing before international inspectors had completed their mission to verify whether or not Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. Had they been allowed to complete their mission and verify that he did not, imagine the suffering, death, and destruction that could have been avoided. In Syria, the US decided to start bombing before the international inspectors were even allowed to start checking claims that Assad gassed his own people in Douma. Why? What was the rush? Was Washington afraid they might not find Assad guilty?

Who really benefits from US attacks on the Syrian government? There were reports that ISIS began making moves immediately after the air strikes. Do we really want to be al-Qaeda and ISIS’s airforce? Is that going to keep us safer? I remember when al-Qaeda was actually considered our enemy, not an ally in overthrowing the last secular government in the Middle East.

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

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Olduvai III: Cataclysm
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