Iron Curtain still separates Russia and the EU
amarynth 9-11 Minuten
by Pepe Escobar with permission and first posted at Asia Times
Sergey Lavrov, Russia’s Foreign Minister, is the world’s foremost diplomat. The son of an Armenian father and a Russian mother, he’s just on another level altogether. Here, once again, we may be able to see why.
Let’s start with the annual meeting of the Valdai Club, Russia’s premier think tank. Here we may follow the must-watch presentation of the Valdai annual report on “The Utopia of a Diverse World”, featuring, among others, Lavrov, John Mearsheimer of the University of Chicago, Dominic Lieven of the University of Cambridge and Yuri Slezkine of UCLA/Berkeley.
It’s a rarity to be able to share what amounts to a Himalayan peak in terms of serious political debate. We have, for instance, Lieven – who, half in jest, defined the Valdai report as “Tolstoyian, a little anarchical” – focusing on the current top two, great interlocking challenges: climate change and the fact that “350 years of Western and 250 years of Anglo-American predominance are coming to an end.”
As we see the “present world order fading in front of our eyes”, Lieven notes a sort of “revenge of the Third World”. But then, alas, Western prejudice sets in all over again, as he defines China reductively as a “challenge”. (…)
Rand Corporation 2019
Despite its vulnerabilities and anxieties, Russia remains a formidable opponent in a few key domains. What non-violent, cost-imposing measures could the United States pursue to stress Russia’s economy, its military, and the regime’s political standing at home and abroad? (…)
Quelle: Ways the United States Could Overextend and Unbalance Russia
August 26, 2020
Belarus – NATO Lobby Acknowledges That Its Color Revolution Failed
On August 15 we explained why the color revolution in Belarus would fail. Belarus’ President Alexander Lukashenko had offered President Vladimir Putin of Russia to finally implement the long delayed Union State that will unite Belarus with Russia. In exchange he wanted full Russian backing for shutting down the U.S. led color revolution against him. Putin accepted the deal. In consequence:
Lukashenko, and his police, will not hang from a pole. Russia will take care of the problem and the Union State will finally be established.
That does not mean that the color revolution attempt is over. The U.S. and its lackey Poland will not just pack up and leave. But with the full backing from Russia assured, Lukashenko can take the necessary steps to end the riots.
And that is what he did. Lukashenko continued to allow demonstrations but when on Sunday the demonstrators were directed to storm the presidential palace they saw a theatrical but strong response: (…)
11.05.2020 — https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/putins-call-new-system-1944-battle-bretton-woods-lessons-victory-day
Putin’s Call For A New System & The 1944 Battle Of Bretton Woods: Lessons For Victory Day
Authored by Matthew Ehret via The Saker blog,
As today’s world teeters on the brink of a financial collapse greater than anything the world experienced in either 1923 Weimar or the 1929 Great depression, a serious discussion has been initiated by leaders of Russia and China regarding the terms of the new system which must inevitably replace the currently dying neo-liberal order. Most recently, Vladimir Putin re-initiated his January 16, 2020 call for a new emergency economic conference to deal with the looming disaster based upon a live session with representatives of the five nuclear powers of the UN Security Council.
This new system as we have seen promoted by the likes of the Bank of England and leading technocrats over the past year, is based upon an anti-Nation State, unipolar system which typically goes by the term “Green New Deal”. In other words, this is a system ruled by a technocratic elite managing the reduction of world population through the monetization of carbon reduction practices under a Global Government.
No matter how you look at it, a new system will be created out of the ashes of the currently dying world order. The question is only: Will it benefit the oligarchy or the people?
In order to inform the necessary decision making going into this emergency conference, it is useful to revisit the last such emergency conference that defined the terms of a world economic architecture in July 1944 so that similar mistakes that were then made by anti-imperialist forces are not made once more. (…)
A bird’s eye view of the vineyard
Revisiting the win-win-win-win outcome in Syria
[this analysis was written for the Unz Review]
In his recent article “The Road to Damascus: How the Syria War Was Won” Pepe Escobar summarized the outcome of the war in Syria in the following way:
“It’s a quadruple win. The U.S. performs a face saving withdrawal, which Trump can sell as avoiding a conflict with NATO ally Turkey. Turkey has the guarantee – by the Russians – that the Syrian Army will be in control of the Turkish-Syrian border. Russia prevents a war escalation and keeps the Russia-Iran-Turkey peace process alive. And Syria will eventually regain control of the entire northeast.”
This otherwise excellent summary overlooks two out of three members of the “Axis of Kindness”, including Israel and the KSA. Of course, later in his analysis Pepe does address these actors, and also includes Kuwait. Furthermore, a thorough discussion of what took place would have to also include China, Hezbollah, Yemen and the EU (well, the ones that matter, the UK and France. The rest are just voiceless colonies of the USA).
Most of the analyses of what just took place focused on the “what”. I will try to look into the “why” and the “how” of what just happened in Syria. Still, I don’t propose to make such a detailed analysis, but I do want to re-classify the actors in a somewhat different way: by their relative strength.
|The “Axis of Kindness”:United States+CENTCOM+NATO+Israel+KSA
||by far the most powerful actor almost by any measure: a bigger military force then all the other actors combined (at least when looked at regionally), huge economic power (the dollar is still THE #1 currency on the planet), total control of the region (via CENTCOM) and quasi unconditional support from Europe (via NATO). Finally, Israel does pack a powerful military punch. This actor has only ONE weakness, but more about that later.
|Iran+Hezbollah+Houthi+Shia forces in Iraq
||in regional terms, Iran is the local superpower which can even successfully defy the Axis of Kindness forces (and has done so since the Islamic Revolution of 1979).
||I placed Russia and Syria in the same group and I could have added Iran, but since I believe that Russia objectively has more power over the Syrian government than Iran, I think that it is important to put Russia and Syria together simply because Damascus cannot say “no” to Moscow, but could do so, at least in theory, to Tehran. Finally, Russia and Iran agree on the main issues, but have different visions for the future of the Middle-East. Thus this is another reason to look at them separately, even if not necessarily in opposition to each other. In military terms, Russia is very strong, then very vulnerable, then very strong again, it all depends on your level of analysis (see below)
|Turkey+pro-Turkish factions in Syria
||That one is a difficult one to classify. On one hand, Turkey does not have any regional allies (the Ottoman Empire left only hatred and deep resentment in its former colonies). For a while, the pro-Turkish factions, which were liberally showered with weapons, money, training, logistical support, etc, by the US and the KSA, but eventually these factions grew weaker and weaker until they reached a state of advanced impotence leaving Turkey pretty much alone (we will also look into that below).
||For a while, they sure looked potentially powerful: not only did the Kurds have a pretty big military power (albeit mostly one restricted to infantry), they had the support of Axis of Kindness and, especially, Israel which saw any form of Independent Kurdistan as a great tool to weaken and even threaten Iraq, Turkey, Iran and Syria. Furthermore, the Kurds happened to control a lot of oil rich regions and they could always retreat in the mountainous areas if needed.
|The Takfiris (i.e. the many and constantly name-changing franchises of what used to be called “al-Qaeda”).
||In reality, the Takfiris really ought to be classified together with the Axis of Kindness since they have been the foot-soldiers/cannon-fodder for the AngloZionist since the 1980s (from Afghanistan then to modern day Syria). Nonetheless, we will consider them as distinct from the rest of the Axis of Kindness forces.
Of course, and just like any other taxonomy, this one is necessarily somewhat subjective and others might use different criteria or categories. Now let’s look at what I believe is the key to the control of the entire region: the ability to place “boots on the ground” or the lack of such an ability: (…)
Nile Bowie 18.07.2019
Conflicted narratives and contested facts mean no near-term justice or closure for what may be the most politicized aviation disaster in history
Quelle: Asia Times | After the crash, information wars inflame MH17 | Article
By M.K. Bhadrakumar 27.03.2019
(An airplane with the Russian flag was seen at Simon Bolivar International Airport in Caracas, Venezuela, March 24, 2019.) The Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova acknowledged in Moscow on Tuesday that Russian “specialists” are indeed in Venezuela within the ambit of a 2001 military-technical cooperation agreement with Caracas. Zakharova underscored that Russia’s bilateral military cooperation … Continue reading “Russia throws down the gauntlet to US on Venezuela”
Quelle: Russia throws down the gauntlet to US on Venezuela – Indian Punchline