Exceptional Powers – Anglo U.S Elite Tyranny XII

https://www.waterstones.com/author/robert-cook/435753/page

June 12th 2024

Are LGBTQ voters about to abandon Biden?

History suggests LGBTQ voters and Biden are headed for a breakup. But there’s much more at play here.

by Christian PazJun 12, 2024, 2:15 PM GMT+1

    Protesters Call On Hamtramck, Michigan To Reverse City's Ban On Flying The Pride Flag

    Gay Pride flags fly at a protest rally in Hamtramck, Michigan.Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

    Christian Paz

    Christian Pazis a senior politics reporter at Vox, where he covers the Democratic Party. He joined Vox in 2022 after reporting on national and international politics for the Atlantic’s politics, global, and ideas teams, including the role of Latino voters in the 2020 election.

    The 2024 election has been a bit weird for President Joe Biden and his fellow Democrats. According to most polls, the president’s support among traditionally Democratic constituencies has slipped severely. Significant numbers of Black voters, Latino voters and young voters — who turned out strongly for Biden during his 2020 victory — seem to be prepared to sit out the election, or even cross over to vote for Donald Trump.

    Biden Risks Losing Significant Share of Black Vote, King …Bloomberghttps://www.bloomberg.com › news › articles › biden-ris…

    15 May 2024 — President Joe Biden risks losing a significant share of Black votes in his rematch with Donald Trump unless his campaign improves his ..

    ‘Enemies list’ of ‘Trumpists and Communists’ published by Biden-linked Ukraine group, lawmakers charge

    Sen JD Vance and Rep Matt Gaetz called on Secretary of State Antony Blinken to send them information regarding the Ukrainian NGO by June 28

    By Emma Colton Fox News

    FIRST ON FOX: Ohio Republican Sen. J.D. Vance and Florida Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz are demanding answers from Secretary of State Antony Blinken surrounding a State Department-linked Ukrainian nongovernmental organization (NGO) that published a list of Americans labeled “Trumpists and Communists” for their opposition to providing more U.S. funds to Ukraine, Fox News Digital exclusively learned. 

    “On June 6, 2024, a Ukrainian corporation, Texty.org.ua, published an online article entitled ‘Rollercoaster: From Trumpists to Communists. The forces in the U.S. impeding aid to Ukraine and how they do it,’” the pair of Republican lawmakers wrote in their letter to Blinken. “The title of this article oversells the product: it is a substantively thin piece, largely an excuse to smear a large group of Americans who have been skeptical of aid to Ukraine in one form or another.” 

    “But it is being broadcast as a part of a coordinated media strategy that has all the hallmarks of a U.S.-targeting influence operation,” the lawmakers continued, identifying the names detailed in the article as an “Enemies List.” 

    Vance, who is considered a top contender as former President Trump’s running mate in the 2024 election, and Gaetz sent the letter to Blinken on Wednesday, demanding information – including any grant agreements – the State Department has with the NGO and its founder, Anatoly Bondarenko. 

    HOUSE PASSES $60B UKRAINE AID BILL AS GOP REBELS THREATEN TO OUST JOHNSON

    splits left to right: Sen. JD Vance, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Rep. Matt Gaetz

    Hunter Biden case: White House won’t rule out president shortening son’s sentence after guilty verdict

    Hunter Biden was found guilty Tuesday in trial focused on his purchase of a handgun

    Published June 12, 2024 3:12pm EDT

    White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre refused Wednesday to rule out President Biden commuting whatever sentence his son Hunter receives after he was found guilty yesterday in a criminal trial focused on his purchase of a handgun in 2018. 

    Jean-Pierre, responding to a reporter asking whether a commutation of Hunter’s sentence is “something that would be on the table,” said she hasn’t spoken to President Biden since the announcement of the verdict and that “sentencing hasn’t even been scheduled yet.” 

    “He’s been very clear. We’ve been very clear. You know, he loves his son. And he and the first lady love their son and they support their son. I just don’t have anything, certainly anything beyond that,” she added, noting an interview Biden gave to ABC News last week in which the president said he would accept the verdict of the trial and rule out pardoning Hunter. 

    “So you’re not ruling out he would commute the sentence?” another reporter then asked Jean-Pierre. 

    PRESIDENT BIDEN REACTS TO SON HUNTER’S GUILTY VERDICT IN GUN TRIAL: ‘I AM ALSO A DAD’

      Horrified cruise passengers spot Russian warships out their window as NATO on red alert

      Russian nuclear warships are heading to Cuba for joint military drills with their Caribbean allies.

      Russian Navy flotilla pictured en route to Cuba

      Cruise ship passengers were left horrified after spotting Russian warships from their cabin windows, leading to a stark warning from a leading defence expert.

      Passengers on board the cruise liner said they saw six ships passing by in broad daylight off the coast of Florida.

      Russian warships enter Havana harbor under …Yahoo News UKhttps://uk.news.yahoo.com › russian-warships-enter-hav…

      6 hours ago — HAVANA (Reuters) –Russian navy ships churned into Havana harbor on Wednesday, a stopover the U.S. and Cuba said posed no threat but which …

      A US official told reporters on Wednesday that Russia had plans to send combat vessels into the Caribbean region to conduct naval exercises, noting that while Washington did not see their arrival as threatening, the US Navy would monitor the exercises.

      Ukrainian Drone Attack On Russian Black Sea Base …Radio Free Europe/Radio Libertyhttps://www.rferl.org › crimea-drone-attacks-ships-ports…

      A Ukrainian naval drone carrying 450 kilograms of TNT struck the Russian Navy base at Novorossiisk in the Black Sea, causing extensive damage to a Russian …

      Brazil and US mark 200 years of diplomatic ties as Washington drags Latin America into global war

      The anniversary was overshadowed by a US offensive on multiple fronts— diplomatic, economic and military—against China, Brazil’s leading trade partner.

      Read more

      KODAK Digital Still Camera

      Nigeria’s trade union leaders sabotage general strike over minimum wage

      The unions are intent on suppressing massive opposition within the working class to Nigeria’s atrocious living conditions, intensified by the ruling class’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the soaring of prices due to the US-NATO war against Russia in the Ukraine and the government’s disastrous austerity policies.

      Read more

      An Open Letter to the Ukrainian government: Release Bogdan Syrotiuk!

      On Thursday, June 13, the following letter from the Socialist Equality Party and the International Editorial Board of the World Socialist Web Site will be delivered to Oksana Markarova, the Ambassador of Ukraine, in Washington, D.C.

      Read more

      Wars, resets and the global criminocracy

      winter oak June 10 by Paul CudenecThis article was written as a contribution to the 2024 Chisinau Forum: ‘Unrestricted warfare: a holistic approach to the Great Reset’.Over the last few years, I have been doing a bit of research into the connections and parallels between the Great Reset and war.Although my focus has been mostly on the First World War, I have come to the conclusion – shocking for some, perhaps, but utterly unsurprising for others – that the agenda behind all modern wars is the same as that behind the Great Reset, Fourth Industrial Revolution, New World Order or whatever else you choose to call it.This agenda – a long-term and multi-faceted agenda – is that of the entity I have taken to calling the criminocracy, a global mafia which, as I explained in my booklet Enemies of the People, is dominated by the Rothschild financial and industrial empire.The overall aim is the consolidation and expansion of the criminocracy’s power and wealth, the two terms being virtually synonymous in this corrupted era that René Guénon termed the Reign of Quantity.We can break this down into three aspects:Short-term goals – ie: given that the whole thing is ultimately about money, immediate financial advantage.Medium-term goals – ie: the setting-up of forthcoming financial advantage.Long-term goals – the creation of the social conditions which will be to the financial advantage of the criminocracy in decades to come.As far as short-term financial advantages to the Great Reset are concerned, as reflected in its initial Covid phase, they are quite obvious.Firstly there were the profits from the sale of the so-called vaccines themselves – purchased and indemnified across the world by public authorities in an atmosphere in which there was no room for democratic scrutiny or debate.Secondly, there was all the new equipment that could be sold, again globally, on the back of the so-called pandemic: face masks, plastic screens, handwash, signage, PCR tests and so on.Thirdly there was the financial advantage gained by large businesses, particularly those operating online, from the lockdowns that severely affected smaller businesses.In fact, Klaus Schwab of the WEF openly boasted about this in his 2020 book Covid-19: The Great Reset.He wrote: “In the US, Amazon and Walmart hired a combined 250,000 workers to keep up with the increase in demand and built massive infrastructure to deliver online. This accelerating growth of e-commerce means that the giants of the online retail industry are likely to emerge from the crisis even stronger than they were in the pre-pandemic era… It is not by accident that firms like Alibaba, Amazon, Netflix or Zoom emerged as ‘winners’ from the lockdowns”. [1]In terms of war the most obvious cause of quick profit is from sales of armaments.The arms trade is a key part of the criminocratic empire – as revealed by the term “military-industrial complex”.

      At the time of the First World War, for example, Britain’s arms trade was controlled by a monopolising ring based around Vickers Ltd; Armstrong, Whitworth and Co Ltd; John Brown and Co Ltd; Cammell, Laird & Co, and the Nobel Dynamite Trust.Historians Gerry Docherty and Jim Macgregor, who show how the criminocrats created and prolonged the war for their own profit, note: “The ring equated to a vast financial network in which apparently independent firms were strengthened by absorption and linked together by an intricate system of joint shareholding and common directorships.“It was an industry that challenged the Treasury, influenced the Admiralty, maintained high prices and manipulated public opinion”. [2]War also calls for vast amounts of raw materials, not just to manufacture the guns, ammunition, tanks, ships and aircraft, and all the associated paraphernalia, but also to transport goods and men over oceans and continents.

      The Rothschild gang’s dominant role in the global oil industry, as well as in iron and steel and in railways, meant their cash tills were ringing heartily from this huge surge in demand – on both sides of the 1914-18 conflict.There are other aspects of immediate financial gain, in the past and in the present, that are hard to identify with precision, because they fall into the realm of clearly criminal behaviour and thus are even more carefully concealed than other forms of skullduggery.Two centuries ago, during the Napoleonic wars, the Rothschilds took advantage of food shortages and spiralling prices to operate on the black market in their home city of Frankfurt and sold provisions to armies at a considerable profit.British goods, including cotton fabric, sugar, indigo and tobacco, were also transported across the Channel, via the Rothschilds’ warehouses, in defiance of Napoleon’s blockade.War-related sanctions can be a profitable affair for those with the right contacts.“Humanitarian” relief in wartime is often a convenient cover for massive and highly dubious transfers of money.Docherty and Macgregor explain how, in the First World War, “aid” to Belgium amounted to “one of the world’s greatest con jobs”. [3]The Commission for Relief in Belgium hailed itself as “the greatest humanitarian undertaking that the world had ever seen”. [4]It later claimed to have spent over $13,000,000,000 on relief for the people of Belgium, a truly staggering figure for the period.

      The man in charge was Herbert Clark Hoover (pictured), later president of the USA, whom the two authors do not hesitate to describe as “a confidence trickster and a crook”.[5]With a certain inevitability, it turns out that he was deeply connected to the circles that had planned the very disaster which he was now allegedly alleviating.Explain Docherty and Macgregor: “The American-born mining engineer lived in London for years and was a business colleague of the Rothschilds… He held shares in the Rothschilds’ Rio Tinto Company and was associated with the same all-powerful Rothschild dynasty which invested in his Zinc Corporation”. [6]“When Herbert Hoover negotiated the massive loans for Belgian Relief from Allied governments he used the J.P. Morgan organizations in America, co-ordinated through Morgan Guaranty Trust of New York which, in turn, made the requisite transfer to London”. [7]“Financial muscle was never far from his center of power. The Morgan/Rothschild axis was wrapped around the entire project”. [8]According to a report from the Kiel Institute for the World Economy earlier this year, 2024, global aid to Ukraine had already reached $278 billion, and billions more dollars are being lined up. [9]It is interesting to note that, back in 2007, The New York Times predicted that a member of the young Rothschild generation, Nathaniel, (pictured) “may become the richest Rothschild of them all” thanks to “bold bets in this era’s new-money investment vehicles” and the family’s traditional geopolitical foresight. [10]It added: “The man in line to be the fifth Baron Rothschild is close to becoming a billionaire through a web of private equity investments in Ukraine”.The medium-term source of financial profit from such grandiose rackets arises from the huge amounts of public money that are thrown into them under the pretext of an “emergency”.The “magic money tree” of public spending suddenly becomes infinitely bountiful when faced with the all-eclipsing “crisis” of pandemic, war, terrorism or climate change.For instance, the British government estimates the total cost of its Covid-19 measures as ranging from £310 billion to £410 billion. [11]Some of the most expensive schemes included the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (sometimes called the furlough scheme) and NHS Test and Trace.As to the key question of where exactly this money came from, with tax revenue down because of lockdowns, it reports that it increased borrowing to £313 billion in 2020/21 alone.Borrowing from the global bankers, that is.Lucrative loans to governments for waging wars have been part of the Rothschilds’ racketeering playbook since Napoleonic times.Historian Niall Ferguson notes that the banking family found themselves “repeatedly on both sides of decisive conflicts which were to recast the map of Europe”. [12]The aftermath of war was also a great source of profit. In 1871, the Rothschilds were on hand to lend massive amounts of money to the French state to pay off its reparations after defeat to Prussia, in what Ferguson describes as “the biggest financial operation of the century”. [13]The post-war dividend also comes from loans and contracts for the “building back better” of devastated countries.The third way in which the criminocrats profit from wars, as from the Great Reset, is the long-term effect such events have on society.The cash-starved states involved, up to the neck in debt, have no choice but to go along with the bankers’ idea of how best to rebuild their countries.After both world wars, the idea of a “post-war” reality, to which people had to adapt, was used to ramp up industrialism and modernity, destroying traditional agriculture and communities and declaring old ways of thinking and living as being unsuited to the brave new normal.Schwab hoped that Covid would have the same effect, creating a new historical separation between “the pre-pandemic era” and “the post-pandemic world”. [14]All such showcase events, including most so-called “revolutions” and so-called terrorist attacks like 9/11, are, in my view, merely “shock and awe” operations designed to push traumatised populations further into the prison-camp society favoured by the criminocrats.Rootless, helpless, disorientated, brainwashed people, entirely dependent on the system for their every need, cut off from each other, from nature, from reality and from spiritual belonging, are the ideal fodder for the criminocrats’ money-making machine.With this in mind, is not surprising that in each case we see the same means being rolled out to ensure that populations go along with the agenda.Most obvious is the full-on propaganda from all the state and corporate media.In 2020 it was the tone and extent of this propaganda, as encountered via French state radio, that indicated to me that the Covid “pandemic” was a psy-ops.

      This propaganda has to go so far as to create a sense of absolute moral conviction in the population and thus a conditioned fear or hatred of anyone who refuses to toe the line.In times of war, dissenters and doubters are portrayed as cowards, traitors, fifth-columnists working on behalf of the despised enemy and during the Covid scam we were represented as irresponsible and selfish idiots, putting the lives of others at risk and perhaps following some insidious “far-right” agenda.To help impose this moral conformity, the system deploys groups which it apparently does not control and whose positions carry moral weight with certain key parts of the population.During Covid, the “left” not only echoed every part of the official narratives concerning lockdowns, social distancing and so-called vaccines, but also adopted a very aggressive stance towards dissidents, vilifying and ostracising anyone, even from their own ranks, who dared sympathise with pro-freedom protesters – as I myself experienced, in fact.During the First World War, one of the groups wheeled out to support the criminocratic agenda was a wing of the Suffragette movement.Apparently in return for agreeing to stop their militant activities, Emmeline and Christabel Pankhurst were handed a government grant.Emmeline declared her support for the war effort and began to demand military conscription for British men, while Christabel Pankhurst demanded the “internment of all people of enemy race, men and women, young and old, found on these shores”. [15]And the suffragettes were among those women who handed white feathers to males not in uniform, including teenage boys as young as 16.Along with propaganda, comes censorship, considered quite normal and acceptable in times of war and justified during so-called pandemics in the name of the public good.But today the mission of the “fact-checkers” introduced during Covid is evolving into a broader attempt to defend the criminocratic agenda.With so-called “hate” laws being hurriedly rolled out all over the place, the main target seems to be those of us who have seen through the lies and propaganda, who have joined the dots to make out the shape of the long-term plan being imposed on us by duplicitous means.We are described as “conspiracy theorists”, which apparently automatically means we are “far right”. Our commitment to truth and freedom is interpreted as “hate” and identifying the leading role of the Rothschilds in the criminocratic empire amounts, necessarily it seems, to so-called “anti-semitism”.The reality is, of course, very different. It is that control of our national and international institutions, as well as of the entire industrial-financial system, has fallen, by foul means, into the hands of a veritable mafia.Because this global domination is profoundly anti-democratic and entirely illegitimate – based as it is on criminal activity and the concealment of that wrong-doing – it has to be kept secret.The criminocracy knows that there can never be clear-sighted and united opposition to its rule while people remain trapped in its tricks and illusions and fail to even recognise its existence, let alone start talking about how to bring it down.

      Our most important first task is therefore to expose its activities, to break down the multiple walls of its defences, to ignore its threats and taboos and to shout from the rooftops what it is and what it is doing to us.[Audio version]

      NOTESFor more detailed discussion of these subject matters, and full references, see my essay ‘A crime against humanity: The Great Reset of 1914-1918’ and my booklet Enemies of the People: The Rothschilds and their corrupt global empire.[1] Klaus Schwab, Thierry Malleret, Covid-19: The Great Reset (Geneva: WEF, 2020), e-book. Edition 1.0, 63%.[2] Gerry Docherty and Jim Macgregor, Hidden History: The Secret Origins of the First World War (Edinburgh & London: Mainstream Publishing, 2013), p. 139.[3] Jim Macgregor and Gerry Docherty, Prolonging the Agony: How the Anglo-American Establishment Deliberately Extended WWI by Three-and-a-Half Years (Walterville, OR: Trine Day, 2018), p. 233.[4] George H Nash, Herbert Hoover The Great Humanitarian 1914-1917, p. x, cit. Macgregor and Docherty, Prolonging the Agony, p. 202.[5] Macgregor and Docherty, Prolonging the Agony, p. 204.[6] Macgregor and Docherty, Prolonging the Agony, pp. 204-05.[7] Macgregor and Docherty, Prolonging the Agony, p. 229.[8] Macgregor and Docherty, Prolonging the Agony, p. 231.[9] https://www.usnews.com/news/best-countries/articles/these-countries-have-committed-the-most-aid-to-ukraine[10] https://www.nytimes.com/2007/03/09/business/09rothschild.html[11] https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/research-briefings/cbp-9309/[12] Niall Ferguson, The House of Rothschild: The World’s GreatestBanker 1849-1999 (New York: Penguin, 2000), p. 89.[13] Ferguson, p. 205.[14] Schwab, 89%, 90%[15] https://spartacus-educational.com/WpankhurstE.htm
      History America is turning into revolutionary France Politicians are wilfully ignoring the omens MALCOM KYEYUNE   

      South Africa & The Scars of Apartheid – all is not forgiven.

      By Sisonke Msimang

      When South Africa transitioned to democracy in 1994, after the activist Nelson Mandela and his party, the African National Congress, helped topple the apartheid regime that had been in place for nearly half a century, Mandela and the ANC made a choice: to avert a brewing race war through a process of truth and forgiveness. The resulting Truth and Reconciliation Commission, chaired by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, was a quasi-legal process “intended to ‘bear witness,’ record, and, when appropriate, grant amnesty to the perpetrators of crimes of apartheid,” wrote Msimang, a South African writer and political analyst. But even though the TRC “offered a chance for many families to hear the truth about what happened to their loved ones,” it “failed to address the deeper wounds of apartheid that continue to plague South Africa.” 

      Although it was important to expose the brutality and human toll of the apartheid regime, wrote Msimang, the TRC sidestepped the structural impacts of apartheid on the millions who had been systematically dispossessed, forced to relocate, and deprived of basic democratic rights and economic opportunities. As a result, “the power imbalances that defined race relations under apartheid continue to exist.” In South Africa today, she wrote, “many look back on the process as a carefully managed stage show—a piece of theater concerned with the appearance of truth-telling rather than the substance of what the truth actually means.”

      Indeed, on Wednesday, May 29, South Africans displayed their dissatisfaction with the status quo at the ballot box in a historic vote that brought the ANC’s 30 years of dominance to an end. Polls show that many South Africans believe their country is heading in the wrong direction, pointing to high rates of crime, unemployment, and inequality. Msimang saw the writing on the wall in 2018, arguing that from the start, the ANC had “failed to ensure that the new South Africa was not simply a new democratic polity but a country genuinely committed to economic justice and equality.” For as long as entrenched economic inequality persists, she warned, “the deferred dream of reconciliation festers like a sore.”
      Read the essay

      Why is the far-right vote surging in the European elections?

      The rise of the far right is the product of the systematic disenfranchisement of the workers by nationalist, bureaucratic organizations that the media and the ruling class promote as the “left.”

      Read more

      Spain’s Revolutionary Left group calls for freeing of Bogdan Syrotiuk

      On Saturday, the Revolutionary Left (IR) group posted a statement calling for the freedom of Bogdan Syrotiuk—a Trotskyist opponent of the fascistic Zelensky regime, and the NATO-instigated Ukraine-Russia war, now threatened with life imprisonment.

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      International Middle East Conference in Istanbul: Support for imperialist propaganda by Gilbert Achcar and pseudo-left

      The Conference sought to politically disarm workers and youth by obscuring the link between the Ukraine war and the Gaza genocide and by downplaying the criminal responsibility of the imperialist powers.

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      “People can’t finish the routes and they’re getting bullied”: Canada Post worker describes miserable working conditions

      “The volumes are unbelievable and we keep having restructures. The depot I work at now had a restructure and we lost two routes and gained a supervisor. How does that happen?”

      Read more

      Workers Struggles: The Americas

      Mexican police attacked striking teachers while the Amalgamated Transit Union called off a strike by 12,000 Toronto Transit Commission subway and bus drivers.

      Read more

      Hunter Biden guilty of all charges in gun trial

      Bernd Debusmann & Madeline Halpert

      BBC News in Delaware court & New York

      • Published11 June 2024, 16:27 BST

      Updated 5 hours ago

      Hunter Biden has been found guilty on all three charges in his federal gun trial, becoming the first son of a sitting US president to be criminally convicted.

      Prosecutors said Biden, 54, lied about his drug use on a federal form when he bought a handgun in 2018.

      Biden pleaded not guilty, claiming he was in recovery from drug addiction at the time and therefore did not lie on the gun application form.

      A panel of 12 Delaware jurors reached their verdict after about three hours of deliberations.

      Biden showed little emotion as he learned his fate. He stared ahead with arms folded before turning around to hug some of the associates on his legal team.

      He faced two charges related to lying about his drug use on a federal background check, and one for possessing a gun while addicted to or using drugs.

      Once court was adjourned, he kissed and embraced his wife before walking out of the room, escorted by Secret Service agents.

      Biden said in a statement that he was “disappointed by the outcome”, but “grateful today for the love and support I experienced this last week from Melissa, my family, my friends, and my community”.

      Experts say it is possible Biden could face prison time – although it would be highly unlikely for him to receive the maximum sentence of 25 years.

      The three gun charges all relate to Biden’s purchase of a Colt Cobra Special revolver at a Delaware gun store in October 2018, which he kept for about 11 days.

      The gun was later discovered in his truck and discarded by his then-girlfriend Hallie Biden – the widow of his brother Beau – in a rubbish bin outside a shop.

      Her decision, which she testified was “stupid”, set off a chaotic series of events that resulted in a criminal investigation and, ultimately, the guilty verdict.

      Biden has been candid in the past about his “full-blown addiction” to crack cocaine, including in his memoir.

      During the trial, prosecutors used portions of the book – in audiobook format, in Biden’s own voice – to highlight his painful descent into addiction and multiple failed attempts at recovery.

      Jurors also heard from his ex-wife and a former girlfriend, Zoe Kestan, who described long crack binges at luxury hotels across the country.

      The two false statement charges stemmed from allegations that he lied about his drug use on a federally mandated form when he bought the weapon.

      Prosecutors said he falsely claimed he was “not an unlawful user of and addicted to any stimulant narcotic drug”.

      The third count was related to possessing a firearm while using drugs.

      Hunter Biden with First Lady Jill Biden and wife Melissa Cohen

      June 11th 2024

      On To A Good Thing

      Joe Biden Playing to the gallery.

      At D-Day commemoration, Biden recklessly inflames war with Russia

      This week, the leaders of the imperialist powers used the commemoration of the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landings to pledge a major escalation of the US-NATO war against Russia, threatening to once more plunge humanity into world war.

      Read more

      Zelensky talking to the old timers, enjoying D Day Celebrations and the romance of World War III
      On June 3, the Ukrainian government banned the World Socialist Web Site across the country, issuing an order commanding all internet service providers to block access to the WSWS indefinitely. The order was issued by the Ukrainian State Special Communications Service (SSSCIP), a wing of the country’s military-intelligence apparatus. It instructs “providers of electronic communication networks and/or services to implement access restriction (block access) on own recursive DNS servers to domain name (as well as its subdomains) wsws.org.” The order has no end date, and will last “until the termination or abolition of martial law in Ukraine.” The SSSCIP claims the ban is justified under President Vladimir Zelensky’s February 24, 2022, declaration of martial law, which suspended democratic rights across the country.   Order by the Ukrainian State Special Communications Service banning the WSWS The order banning access to the World Socialist Web Site exposes as lies all claims that the US-led war in Ukraine is being waged in the name of “democracy.” The reality is Ukraine is a dictatorship where the government is politically dependent on fascists who idolize the Holocaust. 

      The decision to ban the WSWS is a response to the outpouring of support within Ukraine and internationally for Bogdan Syrotiuk, a 25-year-old socialist internationalist who was arrested by the Zelensky regime on April 25 on trumped-up charges of “high treason” for writing articles for the WSWS, which SBU prosecutors (Ukraine’s domestic intelligence agency) deceitfully claim is “Russian propaganda.” Syrotiuk and the organization to which he belongs, the Young Guard of Bolshevik-Leninists (YGBL), are Trotskyists and inveterate opponents both of the US/NATO war against Russia as well as the capitalist government of Vladimir Putin. 
      Sign petition There is compelling evidence that the Ukrainian government’s decision to ban the WSWS was made in consultation with the Biden administration. The Ukrainian State Special Communications Service—the institution from which the order to ban the WSWS derived—is a long-term partner of the United States government. In July 2022 the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA—a component of DHS) signed an agreement with SSSCIP “to strengthen collaboration on shared cybersecurity priorities” which “expands upon CISA’s existing relationship with the government of Ukraine.” CISA Director Jen Easterly said the agreement “allowed us to really focus on how do we effectively share information, best practices, exercise together, train together, figure out how to hunt for adversary activity.”There is not a shred of evidence to support the claim that Syrotiuk or the WSWS are supporters of the Russian government.

      On the contrary, the prosecuting documents rely entirely on articles by Syrotiuk and the WSWS denouncing the US/NATO war, exposing the role of fascists in the Ukrainian government, warning of the danger of nuclear escalation, and calling for the unity of the Russian and Ukrainian working class against both governments.The campaign to free Syrotiuk has garnered widespread international attention, and the International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI)—which publishes the WSWS—has established a defense committee to coordinate the global campaign demanding his freedom. A video originally published on Twitter/X by WSWS Editorial Board Chairman David North has been viewed well over 140,000 times, and thousands of people from across the world have signed the petition demanding Syrotiuk’s release.

      Prominent artists, political groups, journalists and public figures internationally have called on the Ukrainian government to liberate Syrotiuk and drop all charges against him.The WSWS urges all readers to sign the petition demanding Syrotiuk’s liberation, circulate it on social media, get active in the campaign to oppose the widening assault on freedom of speech, issue statements condemning the prosecution and the decision to ban the WSWS.Lastly, we ask that you donate as much as you can to help the WSWS fight this censorship. Donate

      Unaccountable Fake Democracies
      Every community deserves answers and accountability. Yet there has been a net loss of 2,886 local U.S. newspapers since 2005.1 Those that have survived are smaller and often lack the resources needed to produce time-consuming investigative reporting projects.   But ProPublica is different, thanks to readers like you. As a nonprofit newsroom, we don’t depend on advertising or short-term investors. Our work is supported largely by donations from individuals, and over the past few years, we’ve grown significantly. For us, that growth comes with a responsibility: to help fill undeniable gaps in deep-dive journalism all over the country. Through our new 50 State Initiative, ProPublica will bring world-class accountability journalism back to every state in the country.   ProPublica has spent the past seven years refining our approach to local journalism. In 2017, we opened our first regional office, in Illinois, and in the years that followed, we opened hubs in the Midwest, South, Southwest, Northwest and Texas. In 2018, we launched the Local Reporting Network to empower under resourced outlets to pursue accountability reporting. Through the LRN, ProPublica funds the work of a local reporter for at least a year and provides them with editorial guidance and resources through every step of the investigative process. ProPublica has since partnered with more than 70 media organizations to produce over 90 projects across 35 states.   

      In “State of Disrepair: Inside Idaho’s Crumbling Schools,” ProPublica partnered with the Idaho Statesman to investigate why Idaho spends less, per student, on schools than any other state and how restrictive policies created a funding crisis that’s left rural schools with collapsing roofs, deteriorating foundations and freezing classrooms. Spurred by our reporting, the Idaho Legislature approved $2 billion for school districts to repair and replace aging and overcrowded buildings — an amount they said would mark the largest investment in school facilities in state history. Citing our reporting, Gov. Brad Little said in his January State of the State address that he wanted to make funding for school facilities “priority No. 1.”   In our “America’s Dairyland: Risking Workers’ Lives for the Milk We Drink” series, co-published with USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin and El Faro, we examined the cruel and often inhumane conditions facing Wisconsin’s immigrant dairy farm workers. Our reporting revealed how a grammatical mistake in Spanish contributed to officials wrongly blaming a Nicaraguan dairy worker for killing his young son in a farm accident, showed the consequences on the dairy industry of a state law that bars undocumented immigrants from driving and exposed how workers are often fired and evicted from their homes when they are hurt at work, among other issues. In all, the yearlong series of stories brought to light the horrors and tragedies of Wisconsin’s dairy industry. In November, elected officials in Dane County, Wisconsin, approved an $8 million fund for farmworker housing. Separately, the sheriff’s office there drafted a proposed policy on how to respond to incidents involving residents with limited English proficiency, and it’s now working with the Justice Department on its first-ever written policy.  

      We know that local news is essential, and there are critical stories worth telling, but we need to invest in the infrastructure to support sophisticated investigative reporting. Without it, communities lose unbiased information to hold their local officials and institutions accountable, and we miss local political and economic trends that often have national repercussions. ProPublica staff, partnerships and tools help fill the gap in local investigative reporting, catalyzing ambitious, community-driven journalism that sparks change. And we’re just getting started. Help us strengthen the ability of investigative journalism to right wrongs in every corner of this country by making a donation of any amount right now.     As a reader of ProPublica, you know how important it is for journalists everywhere to have the freedom, resources and ability to pursue stories that shine a light on corruption, miscarriages of justice and other wrongdoing. We’re so grateful to our supporters for giving us the ability to make a difference where it’s most needed. I’m asking you to join us today with your donation of any amount and help power one of the largest teams of investigative journalists in the country.  Thanks so much,  

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      June 10th 2024

      WORDS OF WISDOM
      “No man can ever be secure until he has been forsaken by Fortune.”
      BOETHIUS

      President Joe Biden confused Iraq and Ukraine while speaking to reporters over the weekend in France. Biden spoke to reporters at the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery in Belleau, France, on Sunday following his trip to Normandy to commemorate the 80th anniversary of D-Day.

      Joe Biden Confuses Ukraine and Iraq – Newsweek

      Comment Biden is not fit to be President except in a Woody Allen movie where he could be run over and cloned from his nose.

      R J Cook

      Some of F-16s transferred to Kiev to be deployed outside …TASShttps://tass.com › politics

      5 hours ago — Some of the F-16 fighter jets that Kiev expects from the Western countries will be deployed at safe airfields outside Ukraine, Sergey Golubtsov, …

      Plan to Protect F-16s from Russian Attacks Revealed by …Newsweekhttps://www.newsweek.com › …

      11 hours ago — Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in May that Kyiv needs between 120 and 130 F-16s to combat Russia’s air force. Kyiv’s NATO backers …

      An explosion at an armaments factory in Poland has caused fire, killing one person and injuring several more, RMF radio reported on Monday. The blast at the Mesko plant happened at its rocket fuel center, the broadcaster said on its website, citing the company’s official.

      Explosion in Polish weapons factory leaves one dead

      MOSCOW, June 10 (Reuters) – Russian politicians gloated on Monday over heavy defeats for the parties of French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in European Parliament elections, and the Kremlin said right-wing parties were on the rise in Europe

      Russian politicians revel in EU election defeats for Macron …

      ‘Pragmatic manipulation’: Is Russia playing with European …Al Jazeerahttps://www.aljazeera.com › features › pragmatic-manip…

      Spin operations disguised as news outlets and right-wingers muddy the waters with Kremlin narratives, experts say.

      Comment Who are these experts ? Only morons believe western elite media doesn’t spin. Only the morons believe that U.S elections are democratic and that prosecuting Donald Trump is nor a political witch hunt.

      R J Cook

      Putin warns Russia could provide weapons to strike West

      Putin was speaking to foreign journalists at the annual St Petersburg International Economic Forum
      Image caption, Putin was speaking to foreign journalists at the annual St Petersburg International Economic Forum

      George Wright

      BBC News

      Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned that Moscow could arm countries with a view to attacking Western targets.

      Mr Putin made the statement while criticising the West’s delivery of long-range weapons to Ukraine.

      Several countries including the United States have given Ukraine the green light to strike targets inside Russia.

      Such action could lead to “very serious problems”, Mr Putin told foreign reporters.

      “If someone thinks it is possible to supply such weapons to a war zone to attack our territory and create problems for us, why don’t we have the right to supply weapons of the same class to regions of the world where there will be strikes on sensitive facilities of those countries?” the Russian president said.

      “That is, the response can be asymmetric. We will think about it.”

      He did not specify which countries Moscow could supply weapons to.

      Mr Putin singled out Germany, which recently told Ukraine it was free to hit targets inside Russia with long-range German-made weapons.

      “When they say that there will be more missiles which will hit targets on Russian territory, this definitively destroys Russian-German relations,” Mr Putin said.

      US President Joe Biden has given Ukraine permission to use American-supplied weapons to strike targets in Russia, but only near the Kharkiv region. The White House has said Ukraine cannot use long-range ATACMS missiles on Russian soil.

      Ukraine has used US weapons to strike inside Russia in recent days, a US senator and a Western official told the Associated Press on Wednesday.

      Fierce fighting has been raging north-east of Kharkiv since a new Russian push across Ukraine’s northern border. Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second city, is just 30km (18 miles) from the border.

      UK Foreign Secretary Lord Cameron has said it is up to Ukraine to decide how to use British weapons and insisted it has the right to strike targets on Russian territory.

      Ukraine says North Korean missiles are being used inside Ukrainian territory, and Western intelligence agencies say Russia has been using Iranian-made drones in the conflict.

      Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

      Mr Putin was speaking to foreign journalists at the annual St Petersburg International Economic Forum.

      He also warned that the West was wrong to assume that Moscow would never use nuclear weapons.

      “For some reason, the West believes that Russia will never use it,” Mr Putin said when asked by Reuters about the risk of nuclear escalation over Ukraine.

      “We have a nuclear doctrine, look what it says. If someone’s actions threaten our sovereignty and territorial integrity, we consider it possible for us to use all means at our disposal.

      “This should not be taken lightly, superficially.”

      Mr Putin also dismissed the idea that Russia has plans to attack Nato territory.

      “You should not make Russia out to be the enemy. You’re only hurting yourself with this, you know?” Mr Putin said.

      “They thought that Russia wanted to attack Nato. Have you gone completely crazy? That is as thick as this table.

      Who came up with this? It is just complete nonsense, you know? Total rubbish.”

      June 9th 2024

      Macron calls shock French elections after far-right rout

      By Michel Rose and Tassilo Hummel

      June 9, 202411:30 PM GMT+1Updated an hour ago

      Item 1 of 4 Paris, June 9, 2024. REUTERS/Sarah Meyssonnier

      [1/4]Paris, June 9, 2024. REUTERS/Sarah Meyssonnier Purchase Licensing Rights

      , opens new tab

      • Summary
      • French President Macron calls snap parliament vote
      • Move follows defeat to far-right RN in Europe election
      • Macron risks losing control of domestic agenda
      • RN’s Le Pen has eye set on 2027 presidential vote

      PARIS, June 9 (Reuters) – French President Emmanuel Macron rolled the dice on his political future on Sunday, calling snap legislative elections for later this month after he was trounced in the European Union vote by Marine Le Pen’s far-right party.

      Macron’s shock decision set off a political earthquake in France, offering the far-right a shot at real political power after years on the sidelines and threatening to neuter his presidency three years before it ends.

      If Le Pen’s National Rally (RN) party wins a parliamentary majority, Macron would be left with little sway over domestic affairs.

      Macron said the EU result was grim for his government, and one he could not ignore. In an address to the nation, less than two months before Paris hosts the Olympics, he said lower house elections would be called for June 30, with a second-round vote on July 7.

      “This is an essential time for clarification,” Macron said. “I have heard your message, your concerns and I will not leave them unanswered … France needs a clear majority to act in serenity and harmony.”

      Advertisement · Scroll to continue

      After Macron’s announcement, a few hundred anti-far-right protesters gathered at Paris’ Place de la Republique, waving flags for green and leftist groups and chanting against the RN.

      Led by telegenic 28-year-old Jordan Bardella, the RN won about 32% of the vote in Sunday’s vote, more than double the Macron ticket’s 15%, according to exit polls. The Socialists came within a whisker of Macron, with 14%.

      Le Pen, widely seen as the frontrunner for the 2027 election in which Macron is unable to stand, welcomed his decision.

      “We are ready to take over power if the French give us their trust in the upcoming national elections,” she said at a rally.

      Macron’s Renaissance party currently has 169 lower house lawmakers, out of a total of 577. The RN has 88.

      If the RN wins a majority, Macron would still direct defence and foreign policy, but would lose the power to set the domestic agenda, from economic policy to security.

      “Emmanuel Macron is a poker player, we’ve seen that tonight,” said Green Party lawmaker Sandrine Rousseau.

      UNCOMFORTABLE ‘COHABITATION’

      Teneo, a consultancy, said “Macron has called an election he might lose.”

      It said his ultimate “goal might be to bring an RN victory forward in time to expose the party’s lack of experience in government and make them confront politically painful decisions ahead of the 2027 presidential election.”

      Olivier Blanchard, a former International Monetary Fund official who is now at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said Macron had made the best of a weak hand.

      “Either the incoherence of the RN program becomes clear during the campaign and it loses the election. Or the RN wins, gets to govern and quickly makes a mess of it,” he wrote on X.

      Macron’s gambit has echoes of Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez’s move to call a snap national election last year after the far right thrashed his party in local government polls.

      Sanchez managed to retain power but only after months of wrangling with regional parties and a controversial deal to offer an amnesty to Catalan separatists.

      France has known so-called “cohabitation” periods before, when the president is from a different political party than the parliamentary majority. In such cases, the majority party’s prime minister becomes France’s top domestic decision-maker.

      In the last such period, from 1997-2002, President Jacques Chirac played second fiddle to Socialist Prime Minister Lionel Jospin.

      The euro slipped to its lowest level in around a month in early trading in Asia, reflecting the uncertainty.

      Macron’s decision underlined what was a grim night for centrist parties across Europe, with Eurosceptic nationalists making the biggest gains in the European Parliament vote.

      SUCCESSION BATTLE HEATS UP

      Le Pen’s strong electoral showing, notching a 10-point increase on her 2019 EU result, is likely to lure conservative rebels to the RN, a party with a clear sense of momentum.

      On Sunday night, Le Pen’s niece Marion Marechal, a political ally of Eric Zemmour and his far-right Reconquete party, said she was prepared to meet with her aunt to explore a pact.

      “A right-wing coalition to me seems more necessary than ever,” Marechal said.

      Le Pen’s ascent is also likely to turbocharge the centrist succession battle to replace Macron.

      Several big names – including Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin, former Prime Minister Edouard Philippe, the current one, Gabriel Attal, and Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire – are all eager to take the top job, political sources say.

      “We’ll have to do some soul-searching and explain to the French why we haven’t been able to listen to them enough,” Darmanin said in comments prior to Macon’s announcement.

      Sunday’s results also saw the resurgence of the French centre-left, with Socialist candidate Raphael Glucksmann, a pro-Ukraine moderate, who won some 14%. His strong showing will embolden the Socialists, who had faced electoral oblivion after Macron’s 2017 election win.

      Macron Should Be Gone by R J Cook.

      Macron devrait partir

      Comment

      Macron should be called Napoleon IV – note there was no Napoleon II. Lockdown had no role in defeating Covid 19. Covid was basically another version of influenza. The virus particularly thretened ethnic minorities for life syle and genetic reasons. The terrified of dying baby boomer elderly were used as a foil to hide a reality compounded by mass immigration. The Yellow Vests were criminalised and routed by this device and have not been heard of since.

      Europe has millions of indigenous white people, as does the U.S.A. They know the fake democrat elitists have only lies and propaganda to direct voters to the liberal politically correct elite’s selection of ‘democratic’ consensus candidate choices.

      The complacent comfortable rich created conditions for World War Two and they are doing it again. Millions of people have no hope. Mass immigration has destroyed Europe’s social fabric. Multi Culture is dogmatic social solidarity drivel where white Europeran culture is supposed to give way to rappers and women’s studies.

      So white men are designated privileged wife abusing sexists, creating a one parent feminist family culture, astronomical divorce rates as women rush to find themselves, with little boys wanting to be virtuous females like their mothers.

      So these little white boys have the options of being denigrated as future female abusers, gays, or worst of all, TRANSSEXUALS. Failing that there is the increasingly popular suicide option if the anti psychotics fail. Those young whites who pursue the idea of traditional masculinity are the most likely to see what is glibly referred to as ‘far right’ as the only means of defending their historic cultural identity, holdiing back Islam and the emascualting TERF feminism.

      R J Cook 1965 – as my old history teacher,John Skinner, used to say :
      “Robert, you used to be such a nice little boy.”

      R J Cook

      June 8th 2024

      Confident Putin warns Europe is ‘defenceless’

      Putin at St Petersburg forum
      Image caption, The Russian president’s speech capped a surreal week in St Petersburg

      Steve Rosenberg

      Russia editor

      Reporting from

      St Petersburg

      • Published7 June 2024

      Ever since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Moscow has been engaged in nuclear sabre-rattling, dropping a series of not-so-subtle hints that trying to defeat a nuclear power like Russia could have disastrous consequences for those who try.

      Today President Putin claimed that Russia wouldn’t need to use a nuclear weapon to achieve victory in Ukraine.

      He was being interviewed at a panel discussion at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum: the annual event often described as ‘Russia’s Davos’.

      There are few occasions when Mr Putin looks dovish compared to the person asking him the questions.

      But when the person asking the questions is Sergei Karaganov it would be hard not to. Mr Karaganov is a hawkish Russian foreign policy expert. Last year he called for a pre-emptive nuclear strike. Today he suggested holding a “nuclear pistol” to the temple of the West over Ukraine.

      President Putin wasn’t so extreme in his language.

      But he is no dove.

      The Kremlin leader said he did not rule out changes to Russia’s nuclear doctrine: the document which sets out the conditions under which Russia would use nuclear weapons.

      “This doctrine is a living tool and we are carefully watching what is happening in the world around us and do not exclude making changes to this doctrine. This is also related to the testing of nuclear weapons.”

      And he delivered a warning to those European countries who’ve been supporting Ukraine: Russia’s has “many more [tactical nuclear weapons] than there are on the European continent, even if the United States brings theirs over.”

      “Europe does not have a developed [early warning system],” he added. “In this sense they are more or less defenceless.”

      Tactical nuclear weapons are smaller warheads designed to destroy targets without widespread radioactive fallout.

      This has been a surreal week in St Petersburg. On the one hand, a huge international economic forum has been taking place , sending the message that Russia is ready for cooperation and that, despite everything, it’s business as usual.

      Clearly, though, it is not business as usual. Russia is waging war in Ukraine, a war which is now in its third year; as a result, Russia is the most heavily sanctioned country in the world.

      And, right now, tensions are soaring between Russia and the West.

      Earlier this week, at a meeting with international news agency chiefs in St Petersburg, President Putin suggested that Russia might supply advanced conventional long-range weapons to others to strike Western targets.

      This was his response to Nato allies allowing Ukraine to strike Russian territory with Western-supplied weapons.

      He repeated the idea again today.

      “We are not supplying those weapons yet, but we reserve the right to do so to those states or legal entities which are under certain pressure, including military pressure, from the countries that supply weapons to Ukraine and encourage their use on Russian territory.”

      There were no details. No names.

      So, to which parts of the world might Russia deploy its missiles?

      “Wherever we think it is necessary, we’re definitely going to put them. As President Putin made clear, we’ll investigate this question,” Vladimir Solovyov, one of Russian state TV’s most prominent hosts, tells me.

      “If you are trying to harm us you have to be pretty sure we have enough opportunities and chances to harm you.”

      “In the West some will say we’ve heard this sabre-rattling before,” I respond, “and that it’s a bluff.”

      “It’s always a bluff. Until the time when it is not,” Mr Solovyov replies. “You can keep thinking that Russia is bluffing and then, one day, there is no more Great Britain to laugh at. Don’t you ever try to push the Russian bear thinking that ‘Oh, it’s a kitten, we can play with it.”

      CEOs from Europe and America used to flock to the St Petersburg International Economic Forum. Not any more. Instead I saw delegations from Asia, Africa, the Middle East and South America. Russia has been using this year’s event to try to show that, despite Western sanctions, there are plenty of countries in the world who are ready to do business with Russia.

      And what have we learnt in St Petersburg about Vladimir Putin?

      That he sounds increasingly confident and determined not to back down. He seems to believe that in the current standoff between Russia and the West, it is the West that will blink first.

      Comment The above has the usual sneering smug BBC editorial bias, carrying the message not to worry because Vladimir Putin is delusional. Reality is that the west are delusional. Western puppet master fat cats are protecting their multi billion investment and corrupt economic system. Russia is protecting its homeland from being raped, ravaged, dumbed down and divided up by corrupt greedy western capitalism and its NATO army. God help the world and forget all the unctious clap trap about D Day.

      R J Cook 1965

      R J Cook

      Four hostages rescued from Gaza, as hospitals say scores killed in Israeli strikes

      There was also another mass protest today, in increasingly Islamic London.

      Hostages freed but scores of Palestinians killed – a recap of today

      We’re soon going to be bringing our live page to a close, but before we do here’s a recap of what happened today:

      • Four hostages kidnapped by Hamas from the Nova music festival on 7 October have been rescued by the Israeli military during a day-time operation in central Gaza
      • Noa Argamani, 25, Almog Meir Jan, 22, Andrei Kozlov, 27 and Shlomi Ziv, 41 were freed from two seprate buildings in Nuseirat in what the Israeli military said was a “high-risk, complex” mission in the densely-populated area of Nuseirat
      • Scores of Palestinians have been killed in Israeli strikes in and around the area of the operation. The al-Aqsa and al-Awda hospitals said they had counted 70 bodies between them, while the Hamas government’s media office has put the death toll at 210. The Israeli defence ministry body in charge of civilian policy in the occupied West Bank and Gaza estimate there were under 100 casualties
      • Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas called for an emergency UN Security Council session to discuss what he called “the bloody massacre that was carried out by the Israeli forces”
      • World leaders, including US President Joe Biden, France’s Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz have welcomed the news of the hostage rescue.

      Read more about these links.

      God Save America – Vote Donald Trump.

      GET YOUR ‘GOD BLESS AMERICA’ TRUMP BADGE
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      Read This Book

      I read this book this week. It needs to be read. R J Cook

      June 6th 2024

      https://tass.com/economy/1799895

      Today’s D-Day celebration: An exercise in political propaganda and historical falsification

      The imperialist powers are gathering to celebrate their defeat of Nazi Germany even as they have embraced the methods and war aims of the Third Reich.

      Read more

      Far Right Terrifies Liberal Elite – Don’t Worry, Democracy Will Always Win.

      Professional Actor turned World War Three Statesman uses the 80th D Day Celebrations as a NATO rallying cry for all out war on Russia. R J Cook
      Biden and his European allies compared Vladimir Putin to Adolph Hitler, using his D Day Platform calling for all out war on Russia, to resounding applause. R J Cook
      Chuef EU Warmonger French President Macron likes what he hears. He has big worries about Russia as a threat to his country’s elite interests in Africa. Macron is also using his opposition to Putin’s Russia as a rallying call, using the horrors of World War Two to personify Putin as the new Hitler. This angle is aimed at discrediting a big threat from brave realist Marine Le Penn.

      Any breach with the nauseatingly smug elite and bourgeoise consensus has to be called ‘far right’ to cover the fact that the real authioritarian power & land grabbing fascists are already in conttol of what they like to call ‘western style democracies’. This is what Russia has good reason to be afraid of. So do their Chinese, North Korean, Middle Eastern and Global South friends and allies. India and Pakistan also have cause for concern given the western elite’s treatment of Modi and Imran Khan..
      R J Cook

      The far right is set to gain seats in this week’s European Parliament elections, but internal disputes among many nationalist groups will limit their influence and might offer mainstream parties some breathing space.

      The Alternative for Germany (AfD) in particular has suffered a number of setbacks in the past few weeks.

      A series of scandals shook the party, ranging from a conference on the planned deportation of asylum seekers and naturalized Germans to a bribery and spying affair, which tainted the party’s lead European Union candidate, Maximilian Krah, and his deputy, Petr Bystron, a member of parliament. The AfD leadership told both candidates to stop campaigning.

      Even worse: Two weeks ago, French nationalist Marine Le Pen publicly distanced her National Rally (RN) from the AfD after Krah said in an interview with an Italian newspaper that not all members of the Nazi SS paramilitary organization were criminals. The Identity and Democracy alliance in the European Parliament, which includes RN, expelled the German party.

      Although this move was purely symbolic, since it didn’t affect any decision making in the current EU parliament, it showed how isolated the AfD has become in Europe.

      Unlike Le Pen and Italy’s far-right leader Georgia Meloni, the AfD’s co-leader, Alice Weidel, has failed to move her party more into the political mainstream. Plus, it’s unclear whether the AfD will be able to join a political group again in the newly elected EU parliament.

      As a result of this series of mishaps, the AfD has lost its momentum in the polls. In the most recent national EU poll from the Insa institute, it dropped from a peak of 23 percent in July 2023 to 16 percent on June 1. But it remains the second-most popular party in Germany, ahead of Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s Social Democrats.

      Without the AfD, ID is projected to win 68 seats in the assembly, according to a polling average compiled by Europe Elects. That would be down from the December projection when it appeared on track to win 93.

      In spite of the surge projected by the polls, European officials remained skeptical that the results would lead to the rightist tide that some have predicted.

      Their disruptive impact would depend on whether the two main voices of these parts of the spectrum, Le Pen and Meloni, could join forces in a single group in the EU chamber, said some diplomats, who doubted that the Italian prime minister would go for that option.

      The increase of the support for hardline parties against some landmark EU policies, including green rules, has come amid the rising impact of hacking and disinformation against the candidates and the EU institutions.

      Some campaign officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter, expected a significant increase of malware activity during the final couple of weeks.

      European Commission President and EPP candidate Ursula von der Leyen’s website was one of the targets of such attacks. — Arne Delfs and Jorge Valero

      Comment This is simply Bloomberg propaganda. R J Cook

      Scholz admits many Germans afraid of escalation in Ukraine

      Meanwhile, Olaf Scholz pointed out that “securing peace does not mean throwing away the white flag or capitulating to violence and lawlessness”

      German Chancellor Olaf Scholz AP Photo/Viginia May

      German Chancellor Olaf Scholz

      © AP Photo/Viginia May

      BERLIN, June 6. /TASS/. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has admitted that many citizens of the country are afraid of worsening of the conflict in Ukraine and assured that for him the preservation of peace is an absolute priority.

      “Many citizens are afraid that there could be an escalation <…> that security and peace will be jeopardized for us as well,” he said, delivering a government statement in the Bundestag. “There is nothing naive or bad in worrying about peace. The concerns of citizens is something to be respected and taken seriously. I do this in any case,” Scholz affirmed. “As Chancellor, it is my responsibility to ensure that no child who is born in Germany will ever have to face war in our country. This is an absolute priority for me,” he assured.

      Meanwhile, Scholz pointed out that “securing peace does not mean throwing away the white flag or capitulating to violence and lawlessness.” “Peace does not mean conquest,” he emphasized. “We will not allow the return of using war as a means of politics,” Scholz asserted.

      Tags

      Ukraine crisisOlaf Scholz

      US introduces visa sanctions against dozens of Georgian citizens over foreign agents bill

      “This first tranche of visa restrictions comprises members of the Georgian Dream party, members of parliament, law enforcement and private citizens,” US State Department Spokesman Matthew Miller said

      Read more

      Yesterday, 22:12

      Putin sees no reason not to visit Kurils, because it is Russian territory

      Russian President sees no reason to abstain from visiting islands

      Read more

      Today, 12:02

      Seoul might make ‘reciprocal gesture’ in response to Putin’s words — expert

      Director of the Institute for Eurasian Strategic Studies Park Byung-hwan believes that there was nothing fundamentally new about the Russian president’s words concerning relations with the Republic of Korea

      Read more

      June 5th 2024

      Putin’s Hidden Game in the South Caucasus

      Azerbaijan’s Rise, Georgia’s Drift, and Russia’s Quest for a Gateway to Iran and the Middle East

      By Thomas de Waal

      June 3, 2024

      Russian forces at the ceremonial closing of a Russian military base, Khojaly, Azerbaijan, May 2024 Aziz Karimov / Reuters

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      On April 17, a column of Russian tanks and trucks passed through a series of dusty Azerbaijani towns as they drove away from Nagorno-Karabakh, the highland territory at the heart of the South Caucasus that Azerbaijan and Armenia had fought over for more than three decades. Since 2020, Russian peacekeepers had maintained a presence there. Now, the Russian flag that flew over the region’s military base was being hauled down.

      Although it caught many by surprise, the Russian departure further consolidated a power shift that began in late September 2023, when Azerbaijan seized the territory and, almost overnight, forced the mass exodus of some 100,000 Karabakh Armenians—while Russian forces stood by. Azerbaijan, an authoritarian country that shares a border with Russia on the Caspian Sea, has emerged as a power player, with significant oil and gas resources, a strong military, and lucrative ties to both Russia and the West.

      Meanwhile, the region’s other two countries, Armenia and Georgia, have been experiencing tectonic shifts of their own. In the months since Azerbaijan’s takeover of Nagorno-Karabakh, Armenia, a traditional ally of Russia, has swung ever more firmly toward the West. The ruling party in Georgia is breaking with three decades of close relations with Europe and the United States and seems intent on emulating its authoritarian neighbors. In May, the Georgian parliament passed a controversial law to crack down on “foreign influence” over nongovernmental organizations—a law that derives inspiration from Russian legislation and sends Moscow a signal that it has a dependable partner on its southern border.

      Stay informed.

      In-depth analysis delivered weekly.

      Obscured in this reordering of the South Caucasus are the complex motives of Russia itself. The region—known to Russians as the Transcaucasus—has held fluctuating strategic significance over the centuries. The imperial touch was not as heavy there as in other parts of the Russian Empire or Soviet Union. Following the end of the Soviet Union, Moscow tried to keep its leverage through manipulation of the local ethnoterritorial conflicts there, maintaining as many troops on the ground as it could.

      But the war in Ukraine and the Western sanctions regime has changed that calculus. By deciding to remove troops from Azerbaijan, the Kremlin is acknowledging that economic security in the South Caucasus—for now at least—is more important than the hard variety. Russia badly needs business partners and sanctions-busting trade routes in the south. And at a time when it is increasingly squeezed by the West, it also sees the region as offering a coveted new land axis to Iran.

      BAKU’S BIG PLAY

      At first blush, the unilateral Russian withdrawal from Nagorno-Karabakh this spring was puzzling. For much of the past three decades, Azerbaijanis and Armenians have fought over the territory, which is situated within Azerbaijan but has had a majority ethnic Armenian population. In 2020, Azerbaijan reversed territorial losses it had suffered in the 1990s and would have captured Nagorno-Karabakh, as well, were it not for Russia’s last-minute introduction of a peacekeeping force, mandated to protect the local Armenian population. Those peacekeepers stood by, however, as Azerbaijan marched into Karabakh last September. Still, they had a mandate to stay on until 2025. As well as projecting Russian power in the region, they could also have facilitated the return of some Armenians to Nagorno-Karabakh.

      Of course, for Russia, the 2,000 men and 400 armored vehicles that were transferred out of the territory provide welcome reinforcements for its war in Ukraine. But that was not the whole story. By deciding to leave the region, Russia handed Azerbaijan a triumph, allowing its military to take unfettered control of the long-contested territory. For most Armenians, it was a fresh confirmation of Russia’s abandonment. Almost immediately, observers speculated that some kind of deal had been struck between Russia and Azerbaijan.

      As the largest and wealthiest of the three South Caucasus countries, Azerbaijan has profited most from Russia’s shift. It is a player in East-West energy politics, providing oil and gas that is carried by two pipelines through Georgia and its close ally Turkey to European and international markets. Sharing a border with Iran, it also serves as a north-south gateway between Moscow and the Middle East. It helps that the Azerbaijani regime—in contrast to Armenia’s democratic government—is built in the same autocratic mold as Russia’s. Ilham Aliyev, Azerbaijan’s longtime strongman president, has even deeper roots in the Soviet nomenklatura than does Russian President Vladimir Putin: his father was Heydar Aliyev, a veteran Soviet power broker who was also his predecessor as the leader of postindependence Azerbaijan, running the country from 1993 to 2003. The younger Aliyev and Putin also know how to do business together, in a relationship built more around personal connection and leadership style than on institutional ties.

      Relations were not always so good. In tsarist and Soviet times, Moscow took a more overtly colonial approach toward the Muslim population of Azerbaijan, giving Russian endings to surnames and imposing the Cyrillic script on the Azeri language. Azerbaijanis still resent the bloody crackdown in 1990, when, during the last days of the Soviet Union Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev sent troops into Baku to suppress the Azerbaijani Popular Front Party, killing dozens of civilians. During much of the long-running Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Moscow gave more support to the Armenians.

      After the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh war, however, Russia began a new strategic tilt toward Azerbaijan. The withdrawal of peacekeepers this spring looks like the key component of a full Baku-Moscow entente. Just five days after the Russian peacekeepers left, Aliyev traveled to Moscow, where he discussed enhanced north-south connections between the two countries. After the talks, Russian Transport Minister Vitaly Savelyev said that Azerbaijan was upgrading its railway infrastructure to more than double its cargo capacity—and allow for much more trade with Russia.

      For Moscow, this is all part of a race with the West to create new trade routes to compensate for the economic rupture caused by the war in Ukraine. Since the war started, Western governments and companies have been trying to upgrade the so-called Middle Corridor, the route that carries cargo from western China and Central Asia to Europe via the Caspian Sea and the South Caucasus—thereby bypassing Russia. For its part, Russia has been trying to expand its own connections to the Middle East and India via both Georgia and Azerbaijan.

      Azerbaijan, thanks to its favorable geographical position and nonaligned status, has been able to play both sides. It is a central country in the Middle Corridor. It is increasing gas exports to the EU, after a deal with the European Commission in 2022. But it is also ideally positioned to trade with Russian energy exporters, too. In a report released in March, the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies suggested that Azerbaijan, working with its close ally Turkey, could help create a hub for Russian gas to reach foreign markets without sanction. And because of Azerbaijan’s growing status as the regional power broker, it also could enable Russia to realize its aims of building stronger connections to Iran.

      TRAINS TO TEHRAN

      A key part of Russia’s shifting ambitions in the South Caucasus is to rebuild overland transport routes to Iran. The most attractive route is the one that Azerbaijan calls the Zangezur Corridor, a projected road and rail link through southern Armenia that would connect Azerbaijan to Nakhichevan, an Azerbaijani exclave that borders both Iran and Turkey. By reopening the 27-mile route, Moscow would have a direct rail connection to Tehran, which has become an important arms supplier to Russian forces fighting in Ukraine.

      In fact, this north-south axis would effectively revive what was known as the Persian Corridor during World War II—a road-and-rail route running north from Iran through Azerbaijan to Russia that supplied no less than half the lend-lease aid that the United States provided the Soviet Union during the conflict. By a strange twist of fate, this same axis is now vital to Moscow in its current struggle against the United States and the West.

      A long-closed route through Armenia would connect Russia with Iran.

      Back in November 2020, the Russians thought they had a deal to get this route open when Putin, Aliyev, and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan signed a trilateral agreement that formally halted that year’s conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh and introduced the Russian peacekeeping force. The pact included a provision calling for the unblocking of all economic and transport links in the region, and it specifically mentioned the route to Nakhichevan across Armenia. Moreover, it also stated that control over this route would be in the hands of Russia’s Federal Security Service, or the FSB.

      Since then, the corridor has remained closed because Armenia and Azerbaijan could not agree on the terms of its operation. Yet Russia’s insistence that its security forces should be in control has remained constant. On his return from Moscow in April, Aliyev also alluded to this, telling an international audience that the 2020 agreement (whose other provisions are all now redundant) “must be respected.” Opening the corridor, then, may be the essence of the new deal between Azerbaijan and Russia: in return for Russia pulling its forces out of Karabakh—a step that handed the Azerbaijani leadership a major domestic victory—Azerbaijan may acquiesce to Russian security control over the planned route across southern Armenia.

      If such a plan is carried out, it would amount to a coordinated Azerbaijani-Russian takeover of Armenia’s southern border—a nightmare for both Armenia and the West. The Armenians would lose control of a strategically vital border region. The United States and its Western allies would see Russia take a big step forward toward establishing a coveted overland road and rail link with Iran. Moreover, Armenia on its own lacks the capacity to prevent Russia and Azerbaijan from acting.

      ARMENIAN ALIENATION

      No former Russian ally has seen such a dramatic breakdown in its relations with Moscow as Armenia. The two countries have a long historical alliance built on their shared Christian religion. Russia was the traditional protector of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire, and Armenians who lived in the Russian Empire and then the Soviet Union tended to enjoy more upward social mobility than other non-Slavs: some of them reached the highest echelons of the Soviet elite.

      But all that has changed over the past few years. Russian relations with Armenia began to cool off in 2018, when Armenia’s Velvet Revolution brought Pashinyan, a populist democrat, to power. That transition was barely tolerated in Moscow, which feared another “color revolution” bringing an unfriendly government to power on its border. After the Nagorno-Karabakh war in 2020, Moscow continued to support the Armenians, but relations were increasingly strained. For Yerevan, Azerbaijan’s seizure of the territory last fall, with Russian acquiescence, became the last straw.

      As the Kremlin failed to honor its security commitments to Armenia, Pashinyan began to move his country decisively toward the West. Last fall, he met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and pushed Armenia to formally join the International Criminal Court, meaning that Putin, who has an ICC arrest warrant on his head, could theoretically be arrested if he sets foot in Armenia. And in February, Pashinyan also suspended Armenia’s participation in the Russian-led military alliance, the Collective Treaty Security Organization. Some European politicians have now mooted the idea of eventual EU membership for Armenia.

      With Nagorno-Karabakh removed from the equation, Pashinyan is also pressing harder to reduce his country’s dependence on Russia. Armenia has asked Russia to remove the Russian border guards who have been stationed in Armenia’s Zvartnots airport since the 1990s by August 1. Other Russian border guards who are stationed on Armenia’s borders with Iran and Turkey will stay for now, but the deployment in 2023 of an EU civil monitoring mission in southern Armenia shows where the Armenian government’s strategic preferences lie.

      Ethnic Armenians fleeing to Armenia following Azerbaijan’s seizure of Nagorno-Karabakh, September 2023  David Ghahramanyan / Reuters

      Armenia’s pivot to the West, however, comes at an extremely unfavorable moment. Flush with victory and benefiting from strong ties with both Russia and Turkey, Azerbaijan shows no signs of letting up its pressure on Armenia. Meanwhile, the other big regional powers around Armenia—Iran, Russia, and Turkey—are aware that the West is overextended. Despite their many differences, they have a common agenda, shared with Azerbaijan, to cut down the West’s strategic profile in the region and elevate their own. In April, for example, top U.S. and European officials in Brussels announced an economic aid package for Armenia. In response, Iran, Russia, and Turkey each issued almost identical statements deploring the West’s dangerous pursuit of “geopolitical confrontation,” by which they meant Western intervention in Armenia.

      The new confrontation over Armenia is not just a matter of posturing. Pashinyan’s government has evidently concluded that its future lies with the West. Although this shift makes sense in the longer term, it carries many shorter-term risks. Armenia is overwhelmingly dependent on Russian energy and Russian trade: Moscow supplies 85 percent of its gas, 90 percent of its wheat, and all the fuel for its lone nuclear power plant, which provides one-third of Armenia’s electricity. And Armenia’s own economy is still heavily oriented toward the Russian market. These ties give Moscow enormous economic leverage; it could seek to bend the country to its will by sharply raising energy prices or curtailing Armenian trade.

      Meanwhile, Armenian officials and experts fear even more direct military threats to the country’s sovereignty. One is that Azerbaijan, in coordination with Russia, has the military capacity to seize control of the Zangezur Corridor by force, if it chooses to, in a few hours. Another is that rogue domestic forces in Armenia, with foreign backing, could try to overthrow the Pashinyan government by violence or organized street protests in an effort to destabilize the country and allow a more pro-Russian government to take power.

      These threats come in parallel to diplomacy. Azerbaijan continues to pursue bilateral talks with Armenia to reach a peace agreement to normalize relations between the two countries. Whether the two historic adversaries can avoid sliding back into war depends largely on the extent to which Western powers, despite their commitments in Ukraine, are prepared to invest political and financial resources to underwrite such a settlement.

      GEORGIAN AMBIGUITY

      As if the threat of a dangerously weakened Armenia and a new Russian-Iranian land corridor were not enough, the West also faces a growing challenge from Armenia’s neighbor Georgia. As Armenia tries to move West, the government of Georgia, a country that has enjoyed huge support from Europe and the United States since the end of the Cold War, is seemingly doing the opposite.

      Post-Soviet Russia has a long history of meddling in post-Soviet Georgia, and most Georgians retain a deep antipathy to Moscow. In 2008, Georgia cut off diplomatic relations after Russian forces crossed the border and recognized the two breakaway territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent. A 2023 poll found that only 11 percent of Georgian respondents wanted to abandon European integration in favor of closer relations with Russia.

      Nonetheless, the ruling Georgian Dream party—founded and funded by Georgia’s richest businessman, Bidzina Ivanishvili, and in power since 2012—is burning bridges with its Western partners. The most conspicuous feature of this shift, although not the only one, is the controversial “foreign influence” law, which seeks to limit and potentially criminalize the activities of any nongovernmental organization that receives more than 20 percent of its funding from abroad—meaning nearly all of them. The move sparked mass protests, especially from young people, who call it “the Russian law” because it mimics Moscow’s own 2012 “foreign agents” law and seems similarly designed to stifle civil society and remove checks on the arbitrary exercise of power. The law is also a slap in the face for the European Union, coming just months after Brussels formally offered Georgia candidate status and a path toward accession to the union.

      Most Georgians retain a deep antipathy to Moscow.

      Georgian Dream’s first priority seems to be domestic: to consolidate its own power and eliminate opposition. The party is tightly focused on trying to win—by whatever means possible—an unprecedented fourth term in office in Georgia’s October parliamentary elections. Still, the sharp anti-Western turn sends friendly messages to Russia. Another refrain of the ruling party is that it will not allow Georgia to become a “second front” in the war in Ukraine.

      Just as the Azerbaijani leadership does, the men who run Georgia understand Moscow. Ivanishvili, who as Georgian Dream’s kingmaker is the country’s effective ruler, made his fortune in Russia in the 1990s and learned to win in the ruthless business environment of that era; a coterie of people around him have made plenty of money from Russia since the Ukraine war began. Moreover, Georgia has opened its doors to Russian business and banking assets, and direct flights between the two countries have resumed. The Georgian elite seems prepared to pay the cost: one insider, former Prosecutor General Otar Partskhaladze, is now under U.S sanctions.

      If the Georgian opposition manages to overcome its historic divisions and win this fall—no easy task—Georgia’s pro-European trajectory will resume. But much could happen before then. Perpetual crisis in Tbilisi now seems assured for the remainder of this year, if not beyond. Neither side will back down easily. The government has lost all credit with its Western partners, yet to call on Russia for assistance would be extremely dangerous. The uncertainty adds another wild card to any larger calculations about the strategic direction of the South Caucasus.

      LOSING CONTROL

      Putin recognizes the value of the South Caucasus to Russia, but since 2022, he has had little time for it. Moscow has no discernable institutional policy toward the region as a whole—or for other regions beyond Ukraine. The war has accentuated the habit of highly personalized decision-making by a leader in the Kremlin who seems uninterested in consultation or detailed analysis.

      This has left the region’s three countries with strikingly different approaches. Azerbaijan’s Aliyev, with his two-decade relationship with the Russian president, seems most comfortable with Putin’s way of doing business. He can also derive confidence from the strong personal and institutional support he gets from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. In the case of Georgia, with which Russia has no diplomatic relations, there are no face-to-face meetings or structured talks. (If Georgia’s de facto leader, Ivanishvili, ever met Putin, it would have been in the 1990s long before either man was a big political player.) Once again, everything is highly informal and conducted by middlemen. Here, too, business stands at the heart of a mutually beneficial relationship. Paradoxically, the one country in the region that has long-standing formal and institutional links to Russia—Armenia—is also keenest to break off the relationship.

      Speculation has mounted about what Russia may be planning for Abkhazia.

      All these variables make Russian behavior in the region, as elsewhere, highly unpredictable. Since Azerbaijan’s capture of Nagorno-Karabakh, speculation has mounted as to what could happen in Abkhazia, the breakaway territory bordering Russia in the northwest corner of Georgia that has been a zone of conflict since the 1990s. Could Russia move to annex it fully, thus securing a new naval base on the Black Sea? Or—as some recent rumors have suggested—could a deal similar to the one with Azerbaijan be in the offing, whereby Moscow allows Georgia to march into Abkhazia unopposed in return for Georgia renouncing its Euro-Atlantic ambitions? Either of these is theoretically possible—though it is also quite likely that Putin prefers the status quo and will continue to focus on Ukraine.

      At the same time, the most obvious benefit the South Caucasus countries have derived from the post-2022 situation—a stronger economic relationship with Russia—is unstable. Close trading ties to Russia give Moscow dangerous leverage, especially in the case of Armenia and Georgia, which have fewer resources and other places to turn for support. And if Western secondary sanctions on businesses that trade with Russia are tightened, that would put a squeeze on South Caucasian intermediaries.

      Not everything is going Putin’s way. Russia’s military withdrawal from Azerbaijan is a sign of weakness. So, too, arguably, is Armenia’s pivot to the West and the Georgian public’s mass resistance to what the opposition labels the “Russian law.” But if Russia looks weaker in the region, the West does not look stronger. There are significant pro-European social dynamics at work, but they face strong competition from political and economic forces that are pulling the South Caucasus in very different directions. 

      Last month, the Georgian government awarded the tender to develop a new deep-water port on the Black Sea at Anaklia to a controversial Chinese company. That project used to be managed by a U.S.-led consortium. In other words, Europe and the United States are competing for influence not just with Russia but also with other powers, as well. Nothing can be taken for granted in a region that is as volatile as it has ever been.

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      THOMAS DE WAAL is a Senior Fellow at Carnegie Europe and the author of The End of the Near Abroad.

      More:

      AzerbaijanGeorgiaRussiaMiddle EastIranDiplomacyGeopoliticsForeign PolicySecurityStrategy & ConflictVladimir PutinAuthoritarianism

      June 5th 2024

      What did Rishi Sunak do before he entered politics?

      In a 2019 interview with the BBC’s Nick Robinson, Mr Sunak talked about working in banking during the financial crisis. What did the PM actually do before entering politics?

      By Josephine Franks, news reporter and Sarah Taaffe-Maguire, business reporter

      Tuesday 4 June 2024 19:07, UK

      Britain's Prime Minister Rishi Sunak visits Teesside in Tees Valley, Darlington, Britain, May 3, 2024. REUTERS/Molly Darlington
      Image: Pic: Reuters

      When Rishi Sunak moved into Number 10 two years ago, he was described as Britain’s first hedge fund prime minister.

      Sky’s Economics and Data Editor Ed Conway wrote at the time that Mr Sunak’s background makes for a CV unlike almost every other resident of Downing Street.

      It was a career that started aged 21 at Goldman Sachs and saw him co-found a firm registered in the Cayman Islands.

      But it is Mr Sunak’s three years at hedge fund TCI straddling the 2008 financial crash that is now being revisited.

      Both the Conservatives and Labour have been releasing “attack ad” videos in the general election campaign – and the prime minister’s financial background is the subject of Labour’s latest one.

      In a play on The Big Short scene in which Margot Robbie explains mortgage bonds while sipping champagne in a bubble bath, comedian Jon Richardson examines Mr Sunak’s career as he drinks beer in the bath.

      He takes viewers back to 2007, when Mr Sunak was a partner at TCI, a hedge fund known for taking an “activist” shareholder approach.

      Sunak family
      Image: Sunak, second left, with his family. Pic: www.youtube.com/@RishiSunak

      The fund bought a stake in Dutch bank ABN Amro – 2% according to Labour’s video and “more than 1%” according to a 2007 letter from the fund.

      Despite what may seem a small stake, it used its influence to demand the bank sold up – ultimately to the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS).

      Advertisement

      “RBS paid billions for the bank – and in the process inherited a shedload more sub-prime mortgage assets,” Richardson says.

      With RBS saddled with debt, the deal contributed to its near collapse and meant it required a taxpayer bailout to the tune of £45.5bn.

      Richardson claims Mr Sunak “made millions from a deal that helped trigger the financial crash – and all at the expense of the British taxpayer”.

      The Conservatives said the video was “not correct”, describing it as a “misleading piece of Labour Party propaganda”.

      With Labour telling one story and the Conservatives another, Sky News looked at publicly available records – this is what they show.

      The hedge fund made almost £900m profit in the two years leading up to the financial crisis.

      According to Companies House documents, it recorded £321m in profits in the year ending August 2007, Mr Sunak’s first year as a partner, and £555m the following year.

      Members of the hedge fund team received £5m each on average for the two-year period.

      Mr Sunak left TCI in 2009, at the age of 29. He was elected MP for Richmond (Yorks) in 2015.

      Sunak maiden speech in Commons
      Image: Sunak’s maiden speech in the Commons in 2015. Pic: www.youtube.com/@RishiSunak

      What is TCI?

      TCI stands for The Children’s Investment Fund and was set up by billionaire Sir Chris Hohn.

      Both the founder and the company itself are renowned for their secrecy.

      TCI is known for being aggressive and placing very big bets in a limited number of companies.

      In 2009, Sir Chris admitted to a select committee that TCI had bet against British banks during the crash, but said it was “relatively minor”.

      TCI was one of the first hedge funds to donate a portion of its fees to charity, and supports charities tackling poverty in Africa and Asia through The Children’s Investment Fund Foundation.

      It severed formal connections with the foundation about a decade ago but continues to support it.

      The Goldman Sachs company logo is on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City
      Image: Sunak worked at Goldman Sachs when he was 21. Pic: Reuters

      Sunak’s sleepless nights during the 2008 crash

      In a 2019 interview with the BBC’s Nick Robinson, Mr Sunak talked about working in banking during the financial crisis.

      “Living it was stressful,” he said.

      “You are responsible for people’s savings and when that’s all kind of evaporating in front of your eyes, that’s quite a stressful thing to live through.”

      The stress made for some sleepless nights, he said.

      It was an “extraordinary time”, he said.

      “This hadn’t happened since the 1930s, this scale of dislocation of financial markets. The speed of what was happening, the scale of what was happening was unprecedented.”

      Sunak Pharmacy
      Image: The Sunak family pharmacy. Pic: www.youtube.com/@RishiSunak

      From Southhampton to California via Oxford

      Born in 1980 in Southampton, Mr Sunak is the eldest of three children to his parents of Punjabi descent.

      Mr Sunak’s father was a family doctor and his mother ran a pharmacy, where he helped her with the books.

      He attended England’s oldest public school Winchester College where he became the first Indian-origin head boy and was editor of the school paper.

      Winchester College, Rishi Sunak's old school, charges £45,000 a year
      Image: Winchester College, Rishi Sunak’s old school, charges £51,855 a year

      He has since said his experience at the boarding school was “intellectually transforming” and put him “on a different trajectory”.

      Mr Sunak went on to study philosophy, politics and economics at Lincoln College at Oxford University, where he obtained a first-class degree.

      It was the investment club rather than student politics that occupied his time when he was there, with his sights set early on a career in investment.

      He was said to have already had job offers from investment banks under his belt while still in his second year at Oxford.

      Mr Sunak worked for the investment bank Goldman Sachs as an analyst after graduating in 2001.

      He then completed an MBA at Stanford University in California, where he met his future wife, Akshata Murty.

      Read more on Sky News:
      The 12 big Tory names at risk of losing their seats
      General Election poll tracker

      Prime Minister Rishi Sunak with his wife Akshata Murty on stage at the end of his keynote speech during the Conservative Party annual conference at the Manchester Central convention complex.  Picture date: Wednesday October 4, 2023. PA Photo. See PA story POLITICS Tories. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire
      Image: Pic: PA

      A hedge fund registered in the Cayman Islands

      Mr Sunak left TCI in 2009 to cofound a hedge fund, Theleme Partners.

      During the 2022 Tory leadership race, Sky News’ Kay Burley quizzed Mr Sunak on whether he had personally benefitted from tax havens.

      His quick answer was “no”.

      She went on to ask: “A venture capital firm Theleme Partners you co-founded was registered in the Cayman Islands, so just to clarify, did you benefit?”

      Mr Sunak replied: “I have never ever benefited and have paid full, normal taxes wherever I’ve lived.

      “The bit in the Cayman Islands you’re referring to I have nothing to do with. I happen to work with a company that has multiple offices all around the world, but that’s not my responsibility.”

      Burley pressed him on whether he had been paid by the offshore company, which Mr Sunak again denied.

      Comment What will Rishi Sunak do when he is dead ? He will lie still. Anyway at least when asked whether he would use the NHS on ITN head to head with Starmer, former head of the dysfunctional Crown Prosecution Service, Sunak said a resounding ‘No.’

      R J Cook

      National Service: here’s what you need to know about the history of Brits being conscripted into the Armed Forces

      When and why were Britons conscripted into the Armed Forces, and what were national servicemen expected to do? Find out more about the system that saw more than two million men were conscripted into the British Armed forces…

      British Army National Service recruits
      Young Men off to the slaughter in the name of freedom and democracy when rich British had done so much to provoke and promote the Nazi cause by blaming ordinary weary humiliated Germans for a war that was no more Germany’s fault than Britain, Russia or France. History is repeating itself – comment by R.J Cook who has nothing to do with the heavily biased and politically correct BBC. Women were not conscripted into front line units, though they had great natural ability as spies. Britain was and still is a class ridden society, so the lower orders bore the brunt of suffering and sacrifice as they still do and still will when World War Three goes nuclear.
      R J Cook

      Most-Read Articles

      June 4th 2024

      Why India’s Modi failed to win outright majority

      India's Prime Minister and leader of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Narendra Modi (C) with chief minister of Maharashtra state Eknath Shinde (L) and their deputy chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis (R) waves to the crowd during his roadshow in Mumbai on May 15, 2024, ahead of the fifth phase of voting of India's general election. (Photo by Punit PARANJPE / AFP) (Photo by PUNIT PARANJPEP
      Image caption, The results are a personal blow to Mr Modi, who has never fallen short of a majority

      Soutik Biswas

      India correspondent

      @soutikBBC

      Indian PM Narendra Modi has won a third consecutive term in a much tighter general election than anticipated.

      His Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) looks set to fall short of a majority and is leading in the 543-seat parliament, below the required 272 seats. However its coalition partners have gained additional seats.

      The results are a personal blow to Mr Modi, who has always secured majorities in elections as both chief minister of Gujarat state and India’s prime minister, and dominated the country’s politics for a decade.

      The verdict marks a surprising revival for the Congress Party-led INDIA opposition alliance, defying earlier predictions of its decline, and sharply diverging from both exit polls and pre-election surveys.

      More than 640 million people voted in a marathon seven-week election, hailed as a “world record” by election authorities. Nearly half of the voters were women.

      Divide & Fool India by R J Cook

      Comment Western elite and their media, notably the BBC – who with every bulletin – proudly announce they broadcast across the world with their rival CNN – have worked hard to portray Modi as anti Islam. India was divided along religious lines so Pakistan is not going to accept a Muslim leader and government any time soon. Britain’s patronising elite still acts as if it knows best what is best for the Indian sub continent.

      It is the same connundrum the U.S led global elite face in Israel and Gaza. The British wealthy and powerful elite treated their own people worse than slaves for centuries. They built an empire on divide and rule politics, shedding the blood of their lower orders and compliant natives to keep control. Cynically the British stoked up religious differences between Hindus and Muslims, hence the famous Indian Mutiny of 1857. Britain’s ruling classes have a history of exploiting brutal religious rivalries between Catholics and Protestants – and dissenters.

      Those of us growing up in the 1950s and 1960s saw the demise of religious bigotry and tyranny, in the name of the very gentle Jesus Christ, as progress. The Romans learned the lesson that it was better to stop throwing Christians to the Lions, then invent the tyrannical Roman Catholic Church, leading to equally tyrannical spin offs, Protestants and Muslims.

      The U.K ruling elite saw the decline of their Anglican High Church, with all its hyprocrisy and corruption, with fear because it had successfully dumbed down rebellion and so promoted social solidarity through fear.

      With such a massive U.K Muslim influx and their high birth rates, the U.K ruling elite are working to a plan. This elite are members of a global club of plutocrats. They see support for Islam as a source of votes for their politcal interests. More impotantly this elite want to bring back organised religion. Islam is their way forward. Virtually any form of State supervised and endorsed religion will do. They do however think that Islam will be open to reform and so take its place in U.K’s absurd conflict riven Multi Culture.

      Absurdly, Muslims have, like J K Rowling and the TERFSm have big issues with transsexuals. So along comes smooth talking U.K devout Hindu Prime Minister and Rishi Sunak pandering to Islam for their votes. Along with this Sunak panders to TERF feminists and their white man hating attitude to Transsexuals. According to Sunak’s policies, transsexual female will be humiliated ostarcised members of a freak show.

      Modi is no fool. India is a big country. The West didn’t like old rival Pakistan’s leader Imran Khan because he did an ill fated energy deal with Russia. So they used their vile CIA and MI6 influence for trumped up treason charges. When that failed, they had him for an illegal marriage, in their sick oppressive view. Low Caste Modi knows what is going on. He sees all the chaos and corruption is not a way forward for India. The Anglo Americans don’t like his attitude to Anglo U.S NATO led Ukraine proxy war or anything else. They hate how he has lifted millions of Indians out of poverty. Western Governments have spent a fortune, as they have done in Russia and Belorus, targeting impressionable voters, especially young women, on to western style issues like freedom, demcracy and feminism.

      Like Khan and Modi, Trump has to be stopped. Prissy comfortable BBC reporters could not hide their dislike for the lefties sacred ANC defeat in South Africa because they have been a western proxy since 1990, in the sacred lefty loving name of Nelson Mandella. South Africa has been a disaster and basket case ever since. That disaster has kept South Africa vulnerable to western capitalist exploitation, ignorance, and religious bigotry ever since.

      White liberal virtue signallers love it because when the younger African population up and leave under the Asylum Seeker banner. The western global rich love the immigrant cheap labour and the chance to denigrate any white objectors who have to pay the bills and adapt to the newcomers’ culture. Modi doesn’t want this for India, but the west, espscially Britain, does not.

      The Anglo U.S Global elite want control of the world. They don’t want an India on the rise. They are promoting Islam in India to hold it back. They want the old ‘divide and fool’ or should I say ‘divide and fool’ days back.

      R J Cook

      Managing Media Organisations

      By Lucy Küng-ShanklemanCopyright 2000

      Inside the BBC and CNN provides a unique insight into two of the world’s best-known media organisations, during a period of great change and new challenges. The BBC and CNN have very different histories, remits and identities, but both must now compete to provide news in a media environment being reshaped by increasing competition, globalisation, digitisation and convergence. In addition they face increasing pressures of criticism focussed on the struggle for ratings and the perceived “dumbing down” of programming.
      Drawing on intensive research carried out among senior managers in both organisations, Lucy Küng-Shankleman’s study explores the beliefs and attitudes that shape management priorities and broadcasting policy. More controversially, it examines how each organisation’s distinct cultural beliefs – about broadcasting’s fundamental purpose, about the nature of competition, and about the relationship between competition and quality – have laid the foundations for their current and past success, but could now threaten to limit their ability to respond to the unprecedented changes underway in the world’s media landscape.

      Weekend Essay
      Trump is Hillary Clinton’s spirit animal The pair have more in common than you think
      KAT ROSENFIELD    8 MINS

      Trump’s conviction in New York and the 2024 crisis election

      Much will transpire over the five months remaining until the November election. It is possible that neither Trump nor Biden will end up as the candidates of the two corporate-controlled parties. But one thing is certain, the political system as a whole will continue its lurch to the right.

      Read more

      https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/28268078/putin-troops-video-ukrainian-pows-un/

      Before the west moralises about this, remember Juklian Assange. Remember the famous SAS. Remember Vietnam. Remember the British Empire. Remember the Red Indians. This is war. War is War. War Changes people. Here the best aninals have the best chances. R J Cook

      Your info will be used in accordance with our Privacy Policy

      Shameless unmasked Russian soldiers lead Ukrainian PoWs on a death march
      Shameless unmasked Russian soldiers lead Ukrainian PoWs on a death marchCredit: East2West
      A Russian troop kicks a Ukrainian PoW in the groin, causing him to fall to the ground
      A Russian troop kicks a Ukrainian PoW in the groin, causing him to fall to the groundCredit: East2West
      A cruel Russian soldier shoots into the dirt track, inches from the fallen man's head
      A cruel Russian soldier shoots into the dirt track, inches from the fallen man’s headCredit: East2West
      The Russian soldiers grin from ear to ear throughout the harrowing ordeal
      The Russian soldiers grin from ear to ear throughout the harrowing ordealCredit: East2West

      As the Ukrainian soldiers marched in a row – gripping onto each others’ shoulders – the five Russian troops tried to make them sing the Soviet national anthem.

      One cruel captor kicked the leading Ukrainian in the groin, causing him to fall to the ground, where he was then kicked in the head.

      A Russian soldier, reportedly a paratrooper, demanded that the fallen PoW get up, then said: “Looks like we’re gonna have to kill him.

      “Do we have to kill him? Hey, get up, get up.”

      Biden walks difficult tightrope as son’s gun trial begins

      Joe and Hunter Biden seen together in April 2024

      Anthony Zurcher

      North America correspondent

      Reporting from

      Washington

      As jury selection in Hunter Biden’s gun possession trial began on Monday, his father released a statement that illustrated the fine line he is trying to walk in the midst of his re-election campaign.

      “I am the president, but I am also a dad,” said Joe Biden.

      His statement goes on to express support for his son, who could face up to 25 years in prison for allegedly lying about his drug addiction when filling out background documents for a 2018 handgun purchase.

      “As president, I don’t and won’t comment on pending federal cases,” he continues. “But as a dad, I have boundless love for my son, confidence in him and respect for his strength.”

      Hunter Biden’s struggles with drug addiction are common knowledge at this point. He has discussed them publicly and written about them in his memoir – revelations that will soon act as evidence in his trial and fodder for public consumption.

      Joe Biden has previously publicly addressed his son’s tumultuous personal life. In the first presidential debate with Donald Trump in 2020, he said he was “proud” of his only surviving son.

      “My son, like a lot of people you know at home, had a drug problem,” he said. “He’s overtaken it. He’s fixed it. He’s worked on it.”

      Four years ago, President Biden was responding to Trump’s attacks on the debate stage. Now, however, his statement could be an attempt to defuse what is shaping up to be a politically fraught moment, where his son’s troubled past – and, by extension, that of the entire Biden family – will be on full display.

      Hunter Biden’s ex-wife, Kathleen Buhle, is expected to testify about her former husband’s drug habit. Hallie Biden, the widow of Hunter Biden’s brother Beau – with whom Hunter would later be romantically involved and who discarded the handgun in question in a Delaware trash can – is also on the prosecution’s list of witnesses.

      “It’s definitely not a good look,” says Kate Andersen Brower, who has written several books on US presidents, their families and first ladies. She says presidents have had to deal with family turmoil in the past. Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter faced sibling embarrassments, for instance.

      For a president’s child to face a criminal trial is completely unprecedented, however, and it has left the elder Biden walking a tightrope.

      He spent time with his son in Delaware this weekend, and he stayed in Wilmington – where the trial will take place – on Sunday night. During jury selection on Monday, the Biden family was well represented.

      But the president had already returned to Washington by then. While he has noted his support for his son, he is also keeping his distance from the case itself.

      Jill Biden seen arriving in court flanked by security guards and police

      But First Lady Jill Biden attended and sat behind Hunter. The two embraced during a morning break in court proceedings and again after the day concluded. She was joined by Hunter’s current wife, Melissa Cohen Biden – who held his hand as he walked out of court – and his half-sister, Ashley Biden, and her husband.

      Jill Biden married the president after his first wife, Hunter Biden’s mother, died in a 1972 car accident in which Hunter and Beau were injured. The accident also took the life of their infant sister, Naomi.

      The president regularly speaks about the closeness of his family – and has made this devotion part of his political identity.

      He talks about how he would take the train home from Washington to Delaware each night as a US senator so he could say goodnight to his children. He wrote a book about dealing with grief following Beau Biden’s death from brain cancer in 2016 and has discussed the emotional trauma he experienced in the aftermath of his first wife’s passing.

      Now, the more tawdry aspects of the Biden family story will be on public display, such as text messages between Hunter Biden and his family – including intimate communication with Beau’s widow.

      There will also be photographs and other details of Hunter Biden’s crack cocaine use. Some of that was likely gleaned from laptop computer, whose existence and contents became a controversial part of the final days of the 2020 presidential election.

      The Hunter Biden trial comes on the heels of one of the biggest stories of the 2024 presidential election so far – Trump’s conviction on 34 felony counts of falsifying business records. While the two cases are substantially different – charges against a candidate versus a candidate’s son – the rhythm of the two trials will unavoidably lead to comparisons.

      Hunter Biden looks at reporters outside the Delaware courthouse on Monday
      Image caption, Hunter Biden looks at reporters outside the Delaware courthouse on Monday

      At the very least, the attention focused on the Biden family drama, and Hunter Biden’s legal troubles, will shift the media focus from Trump. And the legal issues surrounding his son could make Mr Biden more reluctant to lean in to attacks on Trump’s criminal conviction.

      It may also be a significant distraction for the president heading into the last campaign of his political career.

      “It’s going to be very difficult on a personal level for Biden,” Brower says. “He has experience trying to wall off his personal life from his public life, but it’s his only living son. It’s got to be very taxing.”

      There’s another way Hunter Biden’s legal drama differs from Trump’s. The former president’s three other criminal cases will probably not happen before November’s election.

      Hunter Biden, however, is also under indictment on federal tax charges, with a trial scheduled for September.

      That case, dealing with an alleged failure to pay at least $1.4m in taxes over four years, might be more politically damaging for the president, given that it involves financial crimes rather than ones connected to his drug addiction.

      “Tax evasion is much harder to make excuses about,” says Bower.

      If Hunter Biden is convicted in either federal trial, it is within his father’s presidential power to pardon him.

      Such a move would have been politically toxic in the past, but Trump exercised his pardon authority for a slew of controversial figures who worked for him and seems to have paid little price for it.

      While that is an action that Joe Biden the dad might find appealing – he has insisted his son is innocent – the White House has insisted it is not under consideration.

      US election banner

      Comment Typically the BBC makes this story about Donald Trump rather than the Biden’s misconduct. Western media is not unspun. It is utterly biaed in favour of the Biden totem western leadership and the rush to world war against Russia. They are the planet eaters, and the authoritarians. Biden’s dubious highly profitable interest in Ukraine makes anything said about Trump seem like Kindergarten, but that case has been pullled by the Department of Justice.

      R J Cook

      Related Topics

      June 3rd 2024

      Democracy Needs Defending by R J Cook

      Democracy needs defending

      So please get used to war unending.

      That’s the way life has to be

      That’s the way to keep us free.

      Can’t sing a song to stop the war

      No good in that, just a bore.

      Protest songs are on another page.

      In the sixties they were all the rage.

      We’re even better goodies now

      Don’t ask questions, don’t ask how.

      She bore the boy, raised him well

      Now the State sends him to hell.

      Here at home, the telly news

      Shares all the very latest news.

      Putin’s cracked and so’s his army

      They’ll soon be dead and he’ll go barmy.

      Does that mean he’ll send a nuke

      Bomb Buckingham Palace and kill a Duke ?

      Putin’s known for drunken violence

      Soon there’ll be a deadly silence.

      Birds won’t sing and planes won’t fly

      Life on earth will simply die.

      R J Cook June 3rd 2024

      Hopeful folk singer song writer R J Cook photographed in the back yard 1974.

      Joe Biden has no authority to suspend 2024 electionYahoo News UKhttps://uk.news.yahoo.com › joe-biden-no-authority-sus…

      The US Constitution grants Congress the power to set the timing of presidential elections , but social media posts claim Joe Biden gave himself the ability …

      Could Joe Biden declare a national emergency and suspend the November election?

      Frank Merriam

      Biden could declare a national emergency as a pretense to suspend the November elections. However, it would be a horrible idea. What would be far more effective is to declare an emergency that causes radical and unconstitutional changes to the election process and use that confusion to corrupt the election results. Imagine an election where the results confound all known bellwether indicators. An election where the top of the ticket loses but all down-ticket candidates outperform.

      Either way, I’m hopeful that the American people are intolerant of these shenanigans (this time).

      US News
      Trump Judge Gets Reprieve
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      View from Pakistan: Imran Khan’s ‘politically motivated’ …The Indian Expresshttps://indianexpress.com › Opinion › Columns

      4 Feb 2024 — Imran Khan’s legal troubles. Since former prime minister and PTI founder Imran Khan was ousted from power in 2022, he has been convicted in four …

      Pakistan’s Imran Khan acquitted of leaking state secrets

      DWhttps://www.dw.com › pakistans-imran-khan-acquitted-…

      Support grows in Britain for the release of Bogdan Syrotiuk: “Let his voice be heard!”

      A former miner from South Yorkshire said: “To accuse Bogdan of treason is an absolute outrage. The war against Russia being fought in Ukraine is all about money and power.”

      Read more

      Republicans back Trump as convicted ex-president threatens “breaking point” if imprisoned

      Following Trump’s conviction on Thursday, virtually every major Republican politician has attacked the trial as a sham while defending the ex-president.

      Read more

      Stop the US-NATO escalation toward nuclear war! Unite the international working class against imperialist war and genocide!

      For the first time since the end of the Second World War, the US and its allies are directly targeting Russian territory.

      Read more

      End of African National Congress hegemony: ANC vote slumps to 40 percent in South African election

      The ANC’s share of the vote fell from 57 percent in the 2019 elections, itself a record low, to just 40 percent, much lower than the most pessimistic forecasts.

      Read more

      Germany’s housing market crisis intensifies: Exploding rents, evictions, homelessness

      The state of Germany’s housing market is becoming increasingly catastrophic, with millions of households struggling with exploding rents.

      Read more

      France’s far right may win big in the EU elections … – AP News

      That’s worrying for migrants, Macron and Ukraine. PARIS (AP) — French far-right leader Marine Le Pen isn’t on the ballot at the weekend’s European Parliament election, but she’s likely to emerge as one of its biggest winners

      Germany: Police officer injured in Mannheim stabbing diesEuronews.comhttps://www.euronews.com › News › World › Germany

      The attack took place during a Pax Europa event, an organisation which describes itself as informing the public about the dangers posed by …

      German police officer stabbed by Afghan refugee dies of …India Todayhttps://www.indiatoday.in › World

      A 29-year-old police officer, who was stabbed several times in the head and neck by a 25-year-old immigrant from Afghanistan in Manheim on …

      Mannheim knife attack: Police officer, 29, dies after being …lbc.co.ukhttps://www.lbc.co.uk › news › mannheim-knife-attack-…

      A police officer has died from his injuries after being stabbed repeatedly during an attack at an anti-Islam rally in Germany.

      Two Wrongs Don’t Make A Right by R J Cook

      Comment White people in the western world, outside of the comfortable WOKE not so liberal professional and elite classes, are getting sick of taking the blame for historic imperialism and racism. Elite media nowadays ignore the ethnic and religious element in cases like this. This patronising concdescending elitist attitude is compounded by their lies about western democratic freedoms juxtaposed with poison about Russia being an authoritarian state. However bad Russia might be in certain areas, as my late father told me when I was making excuses for being naughty :”Two wrongs don’t make a right.” I expect dirty tricks to block the French so called far right, as well as the Afd and Marine LePenn.

      R J Cook

      Ukraine is a corrupt basket case living on foreign aid – protected by western media and political spin – R J Cook

      Anglo U.S led NATO fear that a Russian victory in Ukraine will free Russia for more dealings in Africa where conflict is rife due to the legacy of Western Imperialism, ongoing and western placemen. This is why Macron is so keen to lead NATO into direct action – U.S planning to use its client states as cannon fodder in another Imoperial War.

      NATO is planning to extend operations into East Asia to confront China. NATO have developed a strategy to isolate and contain China. where it has established a liason office in Japan. Britain’s Daily Telegraph today reported that ‘with Ukraine’s resources , Putin will be unstoppable. That is the bottom line. Rabies is now rife in basket case Ukraine.

      Meanwhile U.K Special Forces have been directed to assist with the joint Anglo Ukraine obsession with blowing up the Kurch Bridge. That is a serious red line to cross, but they are determined to do it.
      R J Cook

      Why Deploying Western Special Forces to Ukraine may Help …

      Ukraine-Russia war latest: Moscow warns it could go to …Sky Newshttps://news.sky.com › story › ukraine-russia-war-latest-…

      Special forces can also collect critical conventional warfare data from Ukraine, which now has the most battle-hardened military and is intertwined with traditional warfare throughout all allied countries.

      4 days ago — NATO’s secretary general Jens Stoltenberg says Ukraine can win its war against Russia, but only if allies give “continued robust support”. Stoletenberg demands 40 billion a year of tax payer funded debt for Ukraine military support and fast tracking Ukraine into NATO.

      Nato would crush weak Russia and Putin knows it, says UK …Evening Standardhttps://www.standard.co.uk › News › World

      27 Feb 2024 — Admiral Sir Tony Radakin, speaking at a conference in London, said that Russia had “struggled” in Ukraine and that its “military weakness” had …

      Admiral Sir Tony Radakin is the professional head of the United Kingdom’s Armed Forces and principal military adviser to the Prime Minister and Secretary of State for Defence.

      Admiral Sir Antony David Radakin, KCB, ADC is a senior Royal Navy officer. He was appointed Chief of the Defence Staff, the professional head of the British Armed Forces, in November 2021. Radakin was previously the First Sea Lord, the professional head of the Naval Service from June 2019 to November 2021

      Sir Tony Radikin a typically British Class Act.

      He was appointed Chief of the Defence Staff, the professional head of the British Armed Forces, in November 2021. Radakin was previously the First Sea Lord, the professional head of the Naval Service from June 2019 to November 2021. Wikipedia

      Born: 10 November 1965 (age 58 years), Oldham

      Education: King’s College London (2000), MORE

      Spouse(s): Louise Radakin ​(m. 1995)​

      Children: 4

      Awards: Order of the Bath, Legion of Merit (United States), Bronze Star Medal (United States)

      Battles/wars: Iraq War

      Other work: Lord High Constable of England (2023)

      Across the U.K , EU and Biden’s U.S, WOKE masses are rallying to the elitist fantasy that Putin is Hitler and all will be well if these minions will make sacrifices to keep the posturing rich in the style they are accustomed to. It is the same old story.

      Dershowitz Says Trump Could Fast-Track His Appeal to Supreme Court

      President Trump has vowed to appeal his guilty verdict.

      Friends Read Free

      Dershowitz Says Trump Could Fast-Track His Appeal to Supreme Court
      (Left) Alan Dershowitz. (Right) Former President Donald Trump. (Mario Tama, Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)
      Donald Trump
      Trump Turns Tables After Conviction
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      Donald Trump
      Trump Warns of ‘Breaking Point’
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      US Politics Trump Verdict Strengthens GOP Resolve in Battleground States

      June 2nd 2024

      Zelensky accuses Russia and China of undermining summit

      Volodymyr Zelensky at the Shangri-la Dialogue
      Image caption, Mr Zelensky said China was ‘working for countries to not come to the peace summit’

      Tessa Wong

      BBC News, Singapore

      • Published2 June 2024, 11:42 BST

      Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has accused Russia and China of attempting to undermine his upcoming global peace summit in Switzerland.

      He said Russia was trying to dissuade other states from attending the event, and that China was working to do this as well.

      Speaking at an Asian security forum, he also said there were “elements of Russia’s weaponry” that come from China.

      China says it does not side with either side of the Ukraine war, a position that has been increasingly questioned particularly by the US.

      Beijing is accused of aiding Moscow by sending components for weapons. It is also seen as propping up the Russian economy by purchasing vast quantities of oil and gas, softening the impact of Western sanctions.

      Mr Zelensky made a surprise appearance at the Shangri-la Dialogue in Singapore attended by defence chiefs from around the world, including US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and Chinese defence minister Dong Jun.

      The visit was aimed at drumming up support from Asian countries. Besides meeting regional leaders, he also urged delegates to attend his summit due to be held later in June.

      Mr Zelensky said it would focus on achieving nuclear security, food security, and the release of prisoners of war and Ukrainian children held in Russia.

      So far 106 countries said they would send high-level representatives or their leaders to the summit, he said.

      Russia has not been invited and China is not attending.

      Read More https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/articles/c722q4dn7e1o

      Comment NATO stooge and front man Zelensky wants to isolate Russia with all the friends he can muster. China would be stupid to agree because they are next on the planet eating NATO list,

      R J Cook

      Russia threatens to eliminate UK nukes ‘within a day’ in …Daily Expresshttps://www.express.co.uk › News › World

      1 day ago — A Moscow military expert has outlined Russia’s plan to “eliminate” the UK’s nuclear deterrents “within one day” if World War 3 were to break out .

      ‘No way out without bloodshed’: the right believe the US is under threat and are mobilizing. Donald Trump. The Guardian.

      ‘No way out without bloodshed’: the right believe the US is …The Guardianhttps://www.theguardian.com › us-news › article › jun

      Biden secretly gave Ukraine permission to strike inside Russia with US weapons


      Ukraine can now use Western arms to strike inside Russia


      In new escalation, US and Germany approve strikes inside Russia with Western weapons

      Donald Trump, guilty but not out

      The former president has been convicted in a criminal trial. He could still win the White House.

      By Jill Filipovic

      Photo by Eduardo Munoz / Reuters

      Donald Trump is now a convicted felon. On 30 May, a Manhattan jury found the former US president guilty on 34 counts of falsifying business records. Trump is the first US president to be convicted of a crime and faces up to four years in prison. He will be sentenced on 11 July, just days before the Republican National Convention begins on 15 July. 

      It’s an extraordinary moment: not only has a former president been convicted of nearly three dozen felonies, but the Republican Party is now running a criminal for the presidency – and selected him after these and other charges were filed, and after he was found liable for sexual abuse by a civil court.  

      Trump is certainly a felon among friends: “He joins his campaign manager, deputy campaign manager, national security adviser, foreign policy adviser, political consultant, and personal lawyer as felons,” political author Stuart Stevens tweeted shortly after the verdict came down. The man the GOP seeks to reinstall in office is a criminal whose previous campaign and administration was made up of other criminals.  

      More extraordinary still is that this conviction seems unlikely to matter electorally to those same Republican voters who claim to care about morality, want to “drain the swamp” and champion law and order. It may, though, serve as a reminder of Trumpian chaos, and deter those in the messy, less-engaged middle. My impulse is to say that this conviction won’t move the needle with many voters and may in fact reinforce the sense of victimhood among Trump’s base – and leave them even more aggrieved. But the truth is, no one knows; this is a truly unprecedented series of events.  

      Potential electoral impact aside, this moment is a relief for Americans who believe that, while our justice system is often imperfect, it is at its best when holding even the most powerful to the same standards as anyone else. Despite what Trump’s own team has argued, former presidents should not be immune from the rule of law. The prosecution put on a strong case, and a jury found that they demonstrated Trump’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. His status as a former president seeking to be a future one was not a get-out-of-jail-free card. This is precisely as it should be in a functional democratic state.  

      But that doesn’t make this a moment to cheer. Whatever one thinks of Trump as a person or his guilt or innocence – and to be clear, I think he’s a terrible person who is very obviously guilty of the crimes of which he was just convicted – it is in no nation’s best interests to have leaders who are criminals. It is a sign of continued functionality when leaders who do commit crimes are tried, convicted and punished, but it’s also a sign of serious decline when bad actors are put into power in the first place – especially when one of two major parties seeks to put them back in office even after their crimes have been revealed.  

      This conviction is a reminder of just how thoroughly Trump has degraded America, and – four years after he left office and tried to reinstall himself as leader on his way out – how degraded and broken the country remains. This is made worse still by the fact that Trump’s most loyal supporters are convinced that this trial, and the other three that the former president faces, are political farces, examples of a powerful Deep State trying to take down a heroic man. How does a country normalise when a large chunk of it believes a convicted criminal is the good guy, and the real problem is that the long-cherished judicial and democratic systems have told him he must play by the rules?  

      It seems unlikely that Trump will actually go to jail before the November presidential election. Even if he is sentenced to time behind bars, he will no doubt appeal. It’s difficult to imagine that a judge will order the imprisonment of a presidential candidate just days before the Republican National Convention and four months before voters go to the polls. Crazier things, of course, have happened – like a former president being convicted of 34 felonies and running for office again. Perhaps he will indeed be campaigning from a jail cell. But even if Donald Trump remains a free man through the election, he will carry with him a new title: the first former president to be a convicted felon.  

      [See also: The chaos and confusion of Trump on trial]

      A Politically Weponised Corrupt New York Justice System

      by R J Cook

      Comment The Judge’s daughter in this so called example of U.S Justice is an established Democrat Political Consultant. As with the mysterious death of Pimp to the Anglo American super rich Jeffrey Epstein, Trump’s latest conviction is no good reason to celebrate the U.S Justice system which turned a blind eye to the Clintons, notably so many sexual allegations against Saint Bill and his precious feminist warrior wife who immediately disputed her 2016 defeat and wrote a book about it along with all the wonders of her life story. The Democrats in Congress duly spent the entirety of Trumps term of office by working to have him impeached. In short , they were trying to overturn the election.

      At the time, the Anglo U.S led Ukraine proxy war on Russia was well past the preparation stage. So every effort was made to fabricate evidence that Vladimir Putin had rigged the 2016 Presidential Election and that Trump was a Russian agent. U.S, U.K and EU elites and business leaders desperately need what Russia and Ukraine have. They don’t care about the risks because they and their ancestors got rich and powerful that way. They can rely on the masses with the frightened feminists and other ‘freedom fighters’to intimidate or force the masses into line.

      Then we come to the Bidens, ‘Sleepy Joe’ is excused from leaviing secret files at his private address because he was just a ‘kindly forgetful old uncle’ type. U.S Justice, like the U,K is corrupt which is why Epstein customer and friend Prince Andrew escaped extradition and prosecution for sex with a minor on a regulat basis.

      Western justice is all about money, power and privilege. This is another good reason to mock and laugh at those who tell us that we live in a democracy dedcated to our ‘choice and out freedoms.’ As for the above article, it is full of the same old smug feminist lecturing hectoring feminist and liberal white bias.

      Those people had a field day when Trump was convicted of indecent assault on now ancient New York magazine diarist E Jean Carroll dragged up an alleged 1990s sexual assault when she took Trump into a ladies changing room to model lingerie. This renowned diarist could not even remember the date of the alleged offence, but the outcome was a foregone conclusion as the New Yprk Justice system, fully weaponised in the Democrat cause, swung into action.

      R J Cook

      About the Author

      Robert Cook
      facebook https://www.facebook.com/rj.cook.9081 I went to school in Buckinghamshire, where my interests were music ( I was a violinist ), art ( winning county art competitions ) athletics and cross country ( I was a county team athlete ). My father died as a result of an accident- he was an ex soldier and truck driver- when I was 11. It could be said that I grew up in poverty, but I did not see it like that. As a schoolboy, I had my interests, hobbies and bicycle, worked on a farm, delivered news papers, did a lot of training for my sport, painting, and music. I also made model aeroplanes and was in the Air Training Corps, where we had the opportunity to fly an aeroplane. I had wanted to be a pilot, but university made me anti war. At the University of East Anglia-which I also represented in cross country and athletics- I studied economics, economic history, philosophy and sociology. Over the years, I have worked in a variety of manual, office and driving jobs. My first job after univerity was with the Inland Revenue in Havant, near Portsmouth. I left Hampshire to work for the Nitrate Corporation of Chile, then lecturing, teaching and journalism - then back to driving. I play and teach various styles of guitar and used to be a regular folk club performer. I quit that after being violently assaulted in Milton Keynes pub, after singing a song I wrote about how cop got away with killing Ian Tomlinson at G7, in broad daylight and caught on camera. The police took no action, saying taht my assailant had a good job. The pub in question was, and probably still is, popular with off duty police officers.

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