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Lira Tumbles, Turkish Stocks Enter Bear Market After US Issues Ultimatum; Russia Furious

Lira Tumbles, Turkish Stocks Enter Bear Market After US Issues Ultimatum; Russia Furious

The Turkish Lira tumbled as much as 1% against the dollar, leading a decline across emerging markets…

… while Turkish stock market losses accelerated as the Borsa Istanbul 100 Index falls 1.5%, declining for a 6th day and 13 of the past 14, to touch the lowest level since January 2017, effectively entering a bear market, having tumbled 20% from the March highs.

While there wasn’t a specific event behind today’s mauling of Turkey, which to many investors has become the canary in the emerging markets coalmine, the selling picked up after Turkey said soldiers had been dispatched for training in Russia ahead of the delivery of the S-400 missile-defense system. As Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said additionally, as the deadline of S-400 system delivery looms, Turkey will send more personnel for training in the coming months.

Meanwhile, the Kremlin on Wednesday condemned as unacceptable a US ultimatum delivered to Turkey meant to force Erdogan to cancel a deal to buy Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile systems and purchase U.S. Patriot missile systems instead. According to Reuters, Moscow was responding to a CNBC report which said Washington had given Turkey just over two weeks to scrap the Russian deal and do an arms deal with the United States instead or “risk severe penalties.” More from CNBC:

Turkey has a little more than two weeks to decide whether to complete a complex arms deal with the U.S. or risk severe penalties by going through with an agreement to buy a missile system from Russia, according to multiple people familiar with the matter.

By the end of the first week of June, Turkey must cancel a multibillion-dollar deal with Russia and instead buy Raytheon’s U.S.-made Patriot missile defense system — or face removal from Lockheed Martin’s F-35 program, forfeiture of 100 promised F-35 jets, imposition of U.S. sanctions and potential blowback from NATO.

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

Guaido Begs US Military To Help With Maduro Regime Change

Guaido Begs US Military To Help With Maduro Regime Change

Venezuela’s self-declared President Juan Guaido said on Saturday that he has instructed his political envoy in Washington to immediately open relations with the US military. 

Guaido asked his ambassador, Carlos Vecchio, to sit down with Pentagon officials for “direct communications” to discuss “coordination” of efforts to remove Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, whose 2018 reelection Guaido claims is illegitimate. 

“We have instructed our ambassador to meet immediately … with the [US] Southern Command and its admiral to establish a direct relationship,” Guaido told a Caracas crowd during a pro-opposition rally. 

“We have said from the beginning that we will use all the resources at our disposal to build pressure.” 

The Southern Command is part of the US military responsible for operations and security in Central and South America, along with the Caribbean.

The Trump administration has repeatedly said that “all options are on the table” to end the country’s yearslong political crisis. Washington, along with the European Union and most of Venezuela’s neighbors, have backed Guaido to take control of the oil-rich nation.

However, Brussels and most Latin American countries have expressed opposition to potential military intervention. –DW

According to Venezuela’s Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza, the CIA is behind a plan to overthrow Maduro, according to Russia’s state-owned TassSpeaking at a Moscow press conference on Monday, Arreaza said “There is a whole plan made up by the CIA and the Venezuelan opposition to overthrow the Maduro government and take control of our country’s natural resources, which belong to the people as a result of a socialist revolution,” adding “This is what we are trying to prevent. We don’t want the Venezuelan people to suffer”

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

If The Agenda To Oust Maduro Was Honest Instead Of Dishonest

If The Agenda To Oust Maduro Was Honest Instead Of Dishonest

Juan Guaido: I would like to be regarded as the interim president of Venezuela because the current president of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro, stands opposed to the interests of the political bodies with which I have aligned myself. Also, he stands opposed to my own personal ambitions of becoming powerful.

Washington, DC: We too would like for Juan Guaido to be regarded as the interim president of Venezuela, because the current President of Venezuela is too cozy in policy and practice with our geopolitical opponents. We would not mind this so much if Venezuela didn’t sit atop the world’s largest proven oil reserves. If we can’t control what happens to those oil reserves, we won’t be as dominant on the world stage as we otherwise would be.

US allies: We too would like it if Juan Guaido were president instead of Nicolas Maduro, because that’s what the United States wants and it is in our interests to go along with whatever they say. If we go along with Washington’s dictates we are treated favorably, whereas if we don’t we’ll end up getting treated the way the Venezuelan government is being treated currently.

Donald Trump: I’ve been told by the neoconservatives who I have appointed to guide my foreign policy that it would be good for America’s resource control agendas if I apply more sanctions to Venezuela’s economy at this time. This will force the Venezuelan civilians, and more importantly their military, to overthrow Maduro or else see their loved ones die of malnutrition and lack of healthcare.

John Bolton: I too encourage Venezuela’s citizens and military to turn against their government and begin inflicting violence upon it until Nicolas Maduro is either dead or removed from power.

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

Washington Warns Beijing: ‘Paramilitary’ Fishing Boats Will Now Be Treated Like Combatants

Washington Warns Beijing: ‘Paramilitary’ Fishing Boats Will Now Be Treated Like Combatants

As the US continues its increasingly daring and extremely provocative “freedom of navigation” operations in the Strait of Taiwan and South China Sea, it’s also growing more vocal about challenging China’s increasingly expansionary military presence in the Pacific. Over the weekend, the US has warned Beijing that the US military would aggressively respond to provocative acts by China’s coast guard and fishing boats in the same way it reacts to the Chinese navy.

China

The threatening posture is aimed at curbing Beijing’s increasingly sharp-elbowed approach not just to the South China Sea, which it already effectively dominates, despite the rival claims of several of its neighbors (claims that have been validated by international courts), but in the Pacific more broadly, the FT reports.

Admiral John Richardson, head of the US Navy, said he told his Chinese counterpart, vice-admiral Shen Jinlong, in January that Washington would not treat Chinese fishing boats that work with the People’s Liberation Army-Navy any differently from actual Navy ships. This warning wasn’t unprovoked: On several occasions, Chinese fishing boats have blocked vessels belonging to the US, Vietnam and the Philippines. They have even rammed and harassed ships, blocked access to lagoons, and participated in the seizure of reefs and shoals.

“I made it very clear that the US navy will not be coerced and will continue to conduct routine and lawful operations around the world, in order to protect the rights, freedoms and lawful uses of sea and airspace guaranteed to all,” Adm Richardson told the Financial Times.

China’s informal marine militia has been expanding since 2015, when it established a headquarters on the Paracel Islands.

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

Washington Has Destroyed Western Liberty: The Era of Tyranny Has Begun

Washington Has Destroyed Western Liberty: The Era of Tyranny Has Begun

A fish rots from the head. In the Western world rot is accelerating. The rot in Washington is swiftly spreading to state and local governments and abroad to the Empire’s vassal governments.

Washington’s attack on journalism represented by the illegal arrest of Julian Assange has now spread to France. The US government’s policy of sanctions against sovereign countries that do not follow Washington’s orders has spread to the state of New York, where the governor has threatened sanctions against financial institutions that do business with the National Rifle Association.

In France the vassal president Macron has ordered three journalists — who revealed that Macron’s government knowingly and intentionally sold arms to Saudi Arabia and the UAE to be used for the slaughter of women and children in Yemen — to report for police questioning. The report proves that Macron’s government deliberately lied when it said it was unaware that French weapons were to be used for attack rather than defense use in violation of the Arms Trade Treaty of 2014. The journalists are under investigation by the French gestapo for “compromising national defense secrets.”

In other words, when the French government lies, it is a violation of national defense secrets to report it. 

The entire Western world is adopting Washington’s approach to Assange and criminalizing the practice of journalism, thus protecting governments’ criminality. If you reveal a government crime, as Wikileaks did, you will be prosecuted by the criminal government for doing so. It is like permitting a criminal to prosecute the police and prosecutor who want him arrested.

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

The Triumph of Evil

The Triumph of Evil

Today (April 17) I heard a NPR “news” report that described the democratically elected president of Venezuela as “the Venezuelan dictator Maduro.” By repeating over and over that a democratically elected president is a dictator, the presstitutes create that image of Maduro in the minds of vast numbers of peoples who know nothing about Venezuela and had never heard of Maduro until he is dropped on them as “dictator.” 

Nicolas Maduro Moros was elected president of Venezuela in 2013 and again in 2018. Previously he served as vice president and foreign minister, and he was elected to the National Assembly in 2000. Despite Washington’s propaganda campaign against him and Washington’s attempt to instigate violent street protests and Maduro’s overthrow by the Venezuelan military, whose leaders have been offered large sums of money, Maduro has the overwhelming support of the people, and the military has not moved against him.

What is going on is that American oil companies want to recover their control over the revenue streams from Venezuela’s vast oil reserves. Under the Bolivarian Revolution of Chavez, continued by Maduro, the oil revenues instead of departing the country have been used to reduce poverty and raise literacy inside Venezuela.

The opposition to Maduro inside Venezuela comes from the elites who have been traditionally allied with Washington in the looting of the country. These corrupt elites, with the CIA’s help, temporarily overthrew Chavez, but the people and the Venezuelan military secured his release and return to the presidency.

Washington has a long record of refusing to accept any reformist governments in Latin America. Reformers get in the way of North America’s exploitation of Latin American countries and are overthrown.

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

The Strategy of Controlled Chaos

The Strategy of Controlled Chaos

Everyone against everyone else – this is the media image of chaos which is spreading across the Southern shores of the Mediterranean, from Libya to Syria. It is a situation before which even Washington seems powerless. But in reality, Washington is not the sorcerer’s apprentice unable to control the forces now in motion. It is the central motor of a strategy – the strategy of chaos – which, by demolishing entire States, is provoking a chain reaction of conflicts which can be used in the manner of the ancient method of “divide and rule”.

Emerging victorious from the Cold War in 1991, the USA self-appointed themselves as “the only State with power, reach, and influence in all dimensions – political, economic and military – which are truly global”, and proposed to “prevent any hostile power from dominating any region – Western Europe, Eastern Asia, the territories of the ex-Soviet Union, and South-Western Asia (the Middle East) – whose resources could be enough to generate a world power”.

Since then, the United States, with NATO under their command, have fragmented or destroyed by war, one by one, the states they considered to represent an obstacle to their plan for world domination – Iraq, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria and others – while still others are in their sights (among which are Iran and Venezuela).

In the same strategy came the coup d’État in Ukraine under the direction of the USA and NATO, in order to provoke a new Cold War in Europe intended to isolate Russia and reinforce the influence of the United States in Europe.

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

The US’ War Against Iran & Venezuela’s “Deep States” Is Going Public

The US’ War Against Iran & Venezuela’s “Deep States” Is Going Public

The US’ desire to dismantle the network of Iranian influence in Latin America and specifically in Venezuela speaks to its commitment to counter the regional sway of its rivals’ “deep states”, though it’s hitherto unprecedented for any country to make such a crusade public since the end of the Old Cold War, let alone clothe it in “anti-terrorist” and “anti-criminal” rhetoric. 

US Secretary of State Pompeo recently reiterated his rhetoric that Iran is a “global threat”, this time basing it on his claims that the country’s network of influence in Latin America is supporting “transnational crime” and “terrorism”. This comes shortly after Washington designated the IRGC as a “terrorist” organization and approximately half a year since the Justice Department began investigating Iranian ally Hezbollah’s alleged links to drug cartels as a follow-up to the scandalous Obama-era “Operation Cassandra“. Taken together, it’s clear that the US desires to dismantle Iran and Venezuela’s supposedly interconnected influence networks in Latin America as the next step in fortifying “Fortress America“, and while “deep state” wars such as this one have been going on for decades, it’s hitherto unprecedented for any country to make such a crusade public since the end of the Old Cold War when the US used to make similar claims about the USSR and its communist proxies.

Evidently, the US isn’t shy about ushering in a new era of “deep state” wars whereby Great Powers such as itself (which is presently the leading one in the world) openly work to thwart the networks of influence established by its regional rivals’ on the grounds that the military-intelligence wings of their “deep states” are engaged in “criminal” and “terrorist” activities that threaten the world at large.

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

How Brzezinski’s Chessboard Degenerated Into Brennan’s Russophobia

How Brzezinski’s Chessboard Degenerated Into Brennan’s Russophobia

“Russia is an inalienable and organic part of Greater Europe and European civilization. Our citizens think of themselves as European. That’s why Russia proposes moving towards the creation of a common economic space from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, a community referred to by Russian experts as ‘the Union of Europe’ which will strengthen Russia’s potential in its economic pivot toward the ‘New Asia.’” Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation, February 2012

The allegations of ‘Russian meddling’ only make sense if they’re put into a broader geopolitical context. Once we realize that Washington is implementing an aggressive “containment” strategy to militarily encircle Russia and China in order to spread its tentacles across Central Asian, then we begin to understand that Russia is not the perpetrator of the hostilities and propaganda, but the victim. The Russia hacking allegations are part of a larger asymmetrical-information war that has been joined by the entire Washington political establishment. The objective is to methodically weaken an emerging rival while reinforcing US global hegemony.

Try to imagine for a minute, that the hacking claims were not part of a sinister plan by Vladimir Putin “to sow discord and division” in the United States, but were conjured up to create an external threat that would justify an aggressive response from Washington. That’s what Russiagate is really all about.

US policymakers and their allies in the military and Intelligence agencies, know that relations with Russia are bound to get increasingly confrontational, mainly because Washington is determined to pursue its ambitious “pivot” to Asia plan. This new regional strategy focuses on “strengthening bilateral security alliances, expanding trade and investment, and forging a broad-based military presence.”

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

Where Is The World Headed?

Where Is The World Headed?

Since 2016 the United States has been in the Russiagate box, a hoax created by the US military/security complex to prevent President Trump from normalizing relations with Russia.  Normalized relations would devalue THE RUSSIAN THREAT, an orchestration that protects the $1,000 billion annual budget of the military/security complex.  

The Democratic Party, which most certainly is not democratic, supported the hoax hoping to do Trump in for their own reasons and pulled the presstitute media into the conspiracy against Trump.

Now that all the assurances from the Establishment that Trump was a traitor to America who conspired with Russian President Putin to steal the election from the killer-bitch in order that America could serve Russian interests have been exposed as lies by the Mueller report, American attention is free to take up some other nonsensical campaign. The succession of these stupidities is destroying America’s reputation.

True, some of the most crazed of the Democrats and media whores cannot let go of Russiagate.  The presstitutes are saying that Trump would be impeached for his non-crime except the unworthy Democrats had rather go back to the business of spending other people’s money.  A crazed professor or two have declared that Mueller was part of the “Trump coverup” and that Mueller needs to be investigated.  But these claims simply underline that the United States wasted three years of its existence.

Meanwhile, other countries moved on.  The Russians, for example, discovered that Washington’s sanctions had a silver lining.  Russia became more self-sufficient economically and moved out of the box of being an exporter of raw materials to the West, a box into which the Americans and the American-brainwashed Russian economics profession had put the Russian government.

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

Is Washington Preparing the Groundwork for a Maidan Scenario in Venezuela?

Is Washington Preparing the Groundwork for a Maidan Scenario in Venezuela?

Is Washington Preparing the Groundwork for a Maidan Scenario in Venezuela?

Venezuela is home to the largest oil deposits in the world, which makes the political stakes involved much higher than they would be otherwise. Enter Juan Guaidó, Washington’s puppet leader in Caracas, who will be attempting to rally the country against legitimate (i.e., democratically elected by the people) President Nicolas Maduro next month.

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó has announced that April 6 will kick off a nationwide “tactical actions” as part of the so-called Operation Freedom protests, which are designed to oust President Nicolas Maduro.

“On April 6 will be the first tactical actions of the # Operation Freedom across the country,” Guaidó declared over Twitter this week. “That day we must be ready, prepared and organized, with the Aid and Freedom Committees already formed. The rescue of Venezuela is in our hands!”

Is this the start of Maidan 2.0?

But first, who is Juan Guaidó? That’s a questioning worth pondering momentarily because just a few months ago, the overwhelming majority of Venezuelans – 81 percent of the population – had never heard of the young man before. That all changed when Guaidó, 35, was awakened by a phone call from none other than US Vice President Mike Pence. Literally overnight he had become the poster boy of the political opposition in Venezuela and leader of the National Assembly. “Juan Guaidó is a character that has been created for this circumstance,” Marco Teruggi, a sociologist and leading observer of Venezuelan politics, told the Grayzone. “It’s the logic of a laboratory – Guaidó is like a mixture of several elements that create a character who, in all honesty, oscillates between laughable and worrying.”  

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

Russia Gives US Red Line on Venezuela

Russia Gives US Red Line on Venezuela

Russia Gives US Red Line on Venezuela

At a high-level meeting in Rome this week, it seems that Russia reiterated a grave warning to the US – Moscow will not tolerate American military intervention to topple the Venezuelan government with whom it is allied.

Meanwhile, back in Washington DC, President Donald Trump was again bragging that the military option was still on the table, in his press conference with Brazilian counterpart Jair Bolsonaro. Trump is bluffing or not yet up to speed with being apprised of Russia’s red line.

The meeting in the Italian capital between US “special envoy” on Venezuelan affairs Elliot Abrams and Russia’s deputy foreign minister Sergei Ryabkov had an air of urgency in its arrangement. The US State Department announced the tête-à-tête only three days beforehand. The two officials also reportedly held their two-hour discussions in a Rome hotel, a venue indicating ad hoc arrangement.

Abrams is no ordinary diplomat. He is a regime-change specialist with a criminal record for sponsoring terrorist operations, specifically the infamous Iran-Contra affair to destabilize Nicaragua during the 1980s. His appointment by President Trump to the “Venezuela file” only underscores the serious intent in Washington for regime change in Caracas. Whether it gets away with that intent is another matter.

Moscow’s interlocutor, Sergei Ryabkov, is known to not mince his words, having earlier castigated Washington for seeking global military domination. He calls a spade a spade, and presumably a criminal a criminal.

The encounter in Rome this week was described as “frank” and “serious” – which is diplomatic code for a blazing exchange. The timing comes at a high-stakes moment, after Venezuela having been thrown into chaos last week from civilian power blackouts that many observers, including the Kremlin, blame on American cyber sabotage. The power grid outage followed a failed attempt by Washington to stage a provocation with the Venezuelan military over humanitarian aid deliveries last month from neighboring Colombia.

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

U.S. to International Criminal Court: We Will Break Your Legs 

Mike Pompeo

U.S. to International Criminal Court: We Will Break Your Legs 

If the ICC begins and is allowed to investigate crimes against humanity committed by the West, the entire twisted concept of the U.S. and Europe being pioneers of freedom and democracy could easily and quickly collapse.

Well, not exactly like that, but in a way, yes. Now, finally, ‘the gloves are off’. The U.S. is openly threatening the historically timid ICC (International Criminal Court) and its judges. And unexpectedly, the ICC is hitting back. It refuses to shut up, to kneel, and to beg for mercy.

Suddenly, even the Western mass media outlets cannot conceal the aggressive mafia-style outbursts of the U.S. government officials. On March 15, Reuters reported:

“The United States will withdraw or deny visas to any International Criminal Court personnel investigating possible war crimes by U.S. forces or allies in Afghanistan, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Friday.

The court, which sits in The Hague, responded that it was an independent and impartial institution and would continue to do its work “undeterred” by Washington’s actions.

The Trump administration threatened in September to ban ICC judges and prosecutors from entering the United States and sanction funds they have there if the court launched a probe of war crimes in Afghanistan.

Washington took the first step on Friday with Pompeo’s announcement.

“I’m announcing a policy of U.S. visa restrictions on those individuals directly responsible for any ICC investigation of U.S. personnel,” Pompeo told a news conference in Washington.

“These visa restrictions may also be used to deter ICC efforts to pursue allied personnel, including Israelis, without allies’ consent.”

And so it goes… Mike Pompeo’s arrogant facial expression appeared above countless reports and it said it all: the world has to listen to the U.S. dictates, or else!

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

A Tide In The Affairs Of Men

A Tide In The Affairs Of Men

Leonardo da Vinci First anatomical studies c1515 

Sometimes we find ourselves merely pondering, not so much solving big problems. Is there playing out, in the world at large, or at least the world of men, something akin to the Kondratieff cycle in economics, a larger cycle, a force, a tide, an energy, that we mostly ignore, but which drives our ‘affairs’? Dr. D. thinks there may well be. But if so, what happens to free will?

Dr. D.:

Dr. D.: I seem to have taken a dark and grumpy turn lately.  Probably the winter, but as I get older, I find the present state of the world more and more frustrating.

I fear with the present madness it’s just de rigor to 1) label people as something they’re not, even the OPPOSITE of what they are, 2) furiously fight that strawman and 3) not care.  I have no explanation for it, but there are times and tides in the affairs of men (as Shakespeare would say) which flood you out and cost a fortune.  …Or something like that.

And it’s certainly flooding in Europe right now, as darkness falls as the shutters of censorship and totalitarianism are bolted up everywhere, every bit as clear and methodical as was done in 1935, even with a call for a shiny new army.  …To use on no one, of course, because we all know broke nations fund and create armies for no ill intent whatsoever.  But these things happen regularly.

“If…any person had told me that there would have been such [chaos] as [now] exists, I would have thought them a bedlamite, a fit subject for a madhouse.” 
– George Washington, 1786 (after a fiat money blowoff in the states)

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

To Clean Up the Planet, Clean Up DC First

To Clean Up the Planet, Clean Up DC First

Raw log export docks, Astoria, Oregon. Photo: Jeffrey St. Clair.

For decades, majorities of Americans have favored swift, meaningful action on climate change. They understand that we must transition away from dirty fuels and toward clean, renewable energy. Yet despite this overwhelming support, Congress has repeatedly failed to act.

This jarring disconnect between what the public wants to see and what Washington is prepared to deliver doesn’t just threaten the health and safety of everyone in our country — it undermines the very principle of representative democracy.

The reason that Congress hasn’t acted is an open secret.

Follow the trail of the millions of dollars in campaign contributions from corporate polluters over the years, and you’ll find countless lawmakers who’ve worked to block action on climate change. The special interests that are hostile to our environment have designed a sophisticated toolkit for furthering their narrow agenda, while avoiding accountability.

This assault on our democracy must end.

That’s why the new House majority passed H.R. 1, the For the People Act — a bold suite of reforms that will transform our government and our political system for the better.

Every provision of the bill is guided by one overarching imperative: restore the power and the voice of Americans who for too long have felt locked out of their own democracy.

First, H.R. 1 will push back hard against the influence of big money in our politics. That means bringing more transparency to the world of campaign finance so that polluters can no longer use shadowy organizations to hide their political spending.

In addition, by building a new system of citizen-owned elections that amplifies the power of small donors, H.R. 1 will reduce the financial influence of PACs and big corporations. The result will be environmental policy made for the public interest, not the interests of the fossil fuel industry.

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

Olduvai IV: Courage
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