Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
July 04, 2014

Germany Getting Ready To Divorce U.S. Ally

From recent talks and discussions in Germany I conclude that the U.S. is losing more and more support and sympathies. The admiration of earlier times has turned into disgust. While a lot of higher politicians and some journalists still cling to some (well paid) myth of U.S. friendship the party base in all political parties as well as the general public has changed its opinion.

The NSA spying headlines are only one, though important issue. Consider how you would feel about such an intrusive "ally":

The German constitution, as interpreted by the constitutional court, defines privacy as a basic human right. That the U.S. is so casually violating the basic human rights of all German citizens is met with utter disgust. Even the paid and trained Atlantic Council (a U.S. lobby) trolls in German news-site comments have problem defending this issue.

But the NSA spying is not the only problem. The economic breakdown after 2008 clearly had its roots in the United States and is, in Germany, blamed on lax U.S. regulations. And while Germany itself pressed for a change in government in Ukraine the outbreak of violence, the bloody coup and the fighting in the east is considered as "Fuck the EU" U.S. intervention in European affairs.

It may still take a decade or more but my sense is that the U.S.-German alliance in on its way to an unfriendly divorce. Something that 15 years ago seemed unthinkable.

Posted by b on July 4, 2014 at 11:28 AM | Permalink

next page »

Well, seeing how comments in German newssources have changed over the last months, I would say many commenters are ready for that divorce. The question is, will the Government, especially Merkel go along with it.

Up to now the media has been pretty much in bed with the government, especially where Ukraine is concerned. But that too seems to change now. Today for the first time there was a picture in die Zeit which showed a bombed out appartment in the eastern Ukraine. Also more and more often the headlines are not anymore "Poroschenko fighting terrorist", but more like "Poroschenko is bombing...".

However, the reporting on the NSA and how Merkel handled it was pretty gentle. I have the impression that too will change.

But I have been sensing this anti-americanism for quite a while.

Posted by: Fran | Jul 4, 2014 11:41:14 AM | 1

thanks for the view from germany b. i think many in north america are extremely dis-satisfied as well.. "The German constitution, as interpreted by the constitutional court, defines privacy as a basic human right." kudos to them! i wish it were the same here in canada. harper is quite happy to sell us down the river instead and we have no real leadership in canada at present.

Posted by: james | Jul 4, 2014 11:51:45 AM | 2

I also believe that re-unification, for all that it has been harshly judged in political-economic terms, and for all, more particularly, that it was cheered vindictively in a one-sided ideologically sense, nevertheless brought in a certain social leavening effect from the east, screened (for obvious reasons) as it had been from the vilest effects of the neoliberalism infecting the western (and particularly "US sector") parts from the Far West.

Posted by: Petra | Jul 4, 2014 12:01:08 PM | 3

@1 Merkel is weak. Besides the problems of coalitions outside of war time conditions, her party's success hinged on her personal support from single women, Social Dem incompetence, and the Green elite aging out (they don't try to win new voters). The next CDU leader won't enjoy Merkel's token support.

She has no goodwill in Europe, and the Russians generally aren't popular in Germany.

As for Merkel, I expect if she doesn't leave office unexpectedly is a tacit admission of Russian commerce relations because they are better deals and a collection of minor actions against U.S. commerce, mostly on not winning future contracts. She has no clear mandate, and pushing for a change in the status quo without non-Russian European support will result in a breakdown of her coalition because she doesn't have a mandate of any kind.

Posted by: NotTimothyGeithner | Jul 4, 2014 12:11:33 PM | 4

It's just dandy, in a Yankee Doodle kind of way, that b chose to write about German Independence on the 4th of July...

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 4, 2014 12:28:47 PM | 5

Germany is occupied territory, similar to the country of my forefathers. They have used and abused you Deustchland. Once you get all those US troops out of there, then I will take Germany serious once again. Right now your just another Japan.

Auf viderschen

Posted by: Fernando | Jul 4, 2014 12:33:06 PM | 6

@4 not-tg quote. "and the Russians generally aren't popular in Germany." any idea how they compare with the americans? i suspect with the snoopdog nsa story getting as much coverage as it has, americans rating is much worse...

@5 - lol!

Posted by: james | Jul 4, 2014 12:43:00 PM | 7

AS usual germans say one thing to the people and then they keep sleeping with obama in private. Move along.

Posted by: Anonymous | Jul 4, 2014 12:49:31 PM | 8

I will believe it when I see it, a break of Germany from US. Would like to read evidence that German banks could withstand the process of a split or of simply not doing the bidding of the US? Is there evidence anywhere that they could sustain an attack even greater than on the Swiss banks or BNP?

Posted by: mrd | Jul 4, 2014 1:01:39 PM | 9

The US empire could have had a fairly long lifespan. Increasingly it looks like it will join the historical ranks of the flash-in-the-pan club like Bellgium and the Dutch. Which isn't a bad thing at all, the sooner the fever of empire fades the faster the Americans get another chance a responsible governance.

What surprises me is the gusto of hubris, incompetence, bloodlust, and outright decadence the US indulges in after a few short decades of power. It went straight from Ceaser to Caligula in less than a generation.

Posted by: Thepanzer | Jul 4, 2014 1:08:07 PM | 10

Not happening on the ground - forget it b.

A good row does not mean a divorce.

Posted by: somebody | Jul 4, 2014 1:24:42 PM | 11

okie farmer links to PCR in the previous thread as he speaks to US war crimes in addition to Germany, France and the rest of the EU being America's constant most reliable set of bitches and if they may or may not change.

Besides the question as to whether the elite - American and otherwise - are a bunch of fucking morons or a diabolically clever cabal (Note: I think that they are - like the dual nature of light - both at the same time, fwiw), one of the other great debatable questions and which has given rise to its share of "conspiracy" theories and suppositions is:

How could the leaders of sovereign nations outside the US have become such total and complete fucking traitors to the people they titularly represent?

Certainly it is easy to just say that they are all bought-off, power hungry whores and be done with it but as b and PCR note there are/have been many times when the displays of subservience on the part of these non-US US-minions reach such a level that it seemingly defies common sense that these egotistical, power-hungry European politicians could be SO PUBLICLY OBSEQUIOUS to their incompetent/ingenious overlords unless there were some sort of secret agreement/society/pact/threat among that they never let onto.

I mean for the disclosure/leak of every new instance of secret America-whoring on the part of EU pols there are countless public examples of same-said behavior that has gone on for decades.

Of course, one could also just look at the situation from a Marxist/class perspective and also be done with it but a la the fucking embarrassing and incessant Zionist/Israeli whoring by US politicians in the States, the level of donkey-fellating is sometimes SO GROTESQUE AND ABSURD that one has to wonder if that level of whoring could possibly be solely attributed to their similar - or want to be similar - socioeconomic stations especially when - in the Zionist case - it sometimes only tangentially seems to do with economics/greed.

Thus, the questions: are they all just fucking traitorous bought-off whores, are they all members of a secret "club" or (a combination of?) both?

I don't really have a definitive answer and thought I'd just throw this shit out there before I go and celebrate the birth of Merka, fuck yeah.


Posted by: JSorrentine | Jul 4, 2014 1:28:00 PM | 12


Would like to read evidence that German banks could withstand the process of a split or of simply not doing the bidding of the US?

How would a German split from US foreign policy affect banks? Russia and China regularly oppose American moves and their banks function as normal. If Germany (and the EU) moved towards an antagonistic stance against the US, German banks would be fine.

Also while the German-US relationship is going rocky, things are as bad with France-US relations.

Not sure if anyone following the story but the US government fined a French bank, BNP, 9.6 Billion dollars for violating US sanctions and doing business with Cuba, Sudan. Since there are no French sanctions on Cuba this is a shocking move that amounts to nothing more than a cash grab. What right does the US have to get involved in a deal between an independent France and an independent Cuba? Apparently because the bank conducts business using the dollar currency.

So now:

Euro zone finance ministers will discuss on Monday ways to bolster the use of the euro in international trade in the aftermath of BNP's record U.S. fine, France's finance minister said, adding that other banks could face the same fate as BNP.

"BNP is the first but it is not the last one to risk facing such a situation," French Finance Minister Sapin said. He did not name specific firms but said "this could concern banks in other European countries." "It would be a way to protect businesses when, outside of U.S. territory, they carry out transactions that are perfectly legal in the country they belong to," he said.

If I was the French foreign minister I would tell the money grubbing yanks to shove there "fine".

Of course in a twist to the story Vlad Putin has weighed in saying the US is blackmailing France with the fine in order to get France to cancel a Russian purchase of two Mistral Naval ships.

We know about the pressure which our U.S. partners are applying on France not to supply the Mistrals to Russia,” Putin told Russian diplomats in Moscow today. “And we even know they hinted that if the French don’t deliver the Mistrals, they would quietly get rid of the sanctions against the bank, or at least minimize them,” he said without naming BNP Paribas.

Posted by: Colm O' Toole | Jul 4, 2014 1:36:37 PM | 13

Repulsion is only half of the story: b explains how US actions are making it harder for the German ruling class to justify their automatic support for the US. (Of course it isn't quite automatic: Washington was very angry that Germany did not join in the attack on Iraq.)

The other half of the equation is "attraction". The natural attraction between German manufacturing and US markets, for example, is also in decline. Russia and points further east are exerting their attractions: trade with them, and the emerging independents in Latin America, may have more potential than trade with the US. Not least because the US always insists on its right to break agreements, ignore rules and rewrite contracts.

As Germany becomes increasingly repulsed by US policies and, one supposes, US arrogance it is becoming obvious that it does not have to put up with either. In the rest of the world Germany is taken seriously, in Washington it is still seen as a helpless victim that the US long ago rescued, first from itself and then in the Cold War from its other saviour, the Soviet Union.

It is all mythology of course but fools believe fairy tales and the children running the US know no better.

It depends a lot on what idiotic move Washington will take next- (will it humiliate Merkel further by insisting on a more robust stance re Ukraine?)- but the divorce could come sooner rather than later.

Posted by: bevin | Jul 4, 2014 1:43:14 PM | 14

Let's not forget the trouble Germany ran into when they started making noises about getting their gold back from the FED either.

The USA sure hasn't been making many friends lately.

A full-on divorce between the USA and Germany had been great in so many ways.

Posted by: RobertB | Jul 4, 2014 2:17:05 PM | 15

Economically, the US and Europe are on separate paths. Europe depends on Russian gas, and the US, despite its seventy years of war to gain control over the world's energy, does not have a real alternative to Russia's gas fields (no, fracking won't do it). Both the US and the EU have pitched their lots with economic policies that concentrate wealth, but at some point comes the realization that wealth is concentrating with one group more than another.

I suspect that Europe won't go so far as to cut off Russian gas at the expense of their own economies. And they won't tolerate a rogue Ukraine damaging the Russian pipelines for some bankrupt nationalist fantasy in Kiev.

No, there will be a division, and very soon, between Germany and the US. It will be interesting to see how the neocons in the State Department play this. By their actions they appear not to take the economics of Europe into their calculations.

Posted by: Bob In Portland | Jul 4, 2014 2:33:11 PM | 16

Fuck the EU said Nuland. I think there's a tendency among her class to see Europe as irrelevant. Just a land of old castles and fancy cheeses with a docile population. She may be right.

Posted by: dh | Jul 4, 2014 2:39:34 PM | 17

@7 The comparison between U.S. and Russian standing isn't important from Merkel stance. German can't exist on its own, and with a coalition government, the members are powerful. All it takes is a anti-Russian bloc and the SD's to make a play. I know it's hypothetical, but I don't see a path for Merkel given Russian standing. Not everyone will make similar calculations. They may think Germany can lead Europe and demand that.

The only way for Merkel to move into the Russian camp would be if Russia was wildly popular to a point where expressing discontent with Putin would produce public shunning.

I don't think Merkel will move without partners, given her tepid NSA reaction. Russia isn't a safe partner politically, and if she moved towards Vlad publicly, there would be cartoons of her in a Stazi outfit thanking the KGB, her head as a ping pong ball, her on a chess board, her and Vlad trying on mustaches, and politicians screaming about the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact 2.0. Not having been re-elected in her own right (she needed a grand coalition despite token support from the opposition's base). Merkel is weak, and it's likely she knows she is weak given her public change of attitude after a visit from the Siemens CEO. On her own, she chose to follow the Obama crew and not rock the boat.

On its own, this might gain traction with cranks, but it might be enough to create a constitutional crisis if she can't convince the coalition to stay together.

Posted by: NotTimothyGeithner | Jul 4, 2014 2:51:14 PM | 18

I think you need to add to that list. The way the US is handling the Ukraine debacle. Because of Economic and security interest, both Germany and France might in the end side with Russia. I can't help but feel they understand its not in there
interest having a Nazi Government running amok in Europe that is being back by the US.

Posted by: Ron | Jul 4, 2014 2:53:02 PM | 19

Posted by b on July 4, 2014 at 11:28 AM

"It may still take a decade or more but my sense is that the U.S.-German alliance in on its way to an unfriendly divorce. Something that 15 years ago seemed unthinkable."

That is way too long a time frame. These divorce proceedings need to be greatly speeded up. This is also imperative for every other country in the world.

Posted by: scalawag | Jul 4, 2014 2:59:17 PM | 20

Posted by: JSorrentine | Jul 4, 2014 1:28:00 PM | 12

Comparing the subservience of German "leaders" to America with the way American "leaders" grovel to Israel is very observant, because the German leadership equally panders to Israel, as it does to America. The same is true of most western regimes that operate essentially on the surface as "American" colonies.

Posted by: scalawag | Jul 4, 2014 3:10:35 PM | 21

Well at least Germany has got a constitution, to hold people to account.

Pity that the US seems to have lost its constitution.
(nobody reads it, anyhow, perhaps they could with a little help from Germany in retrieving it)

Posted by: chris m | Jul 4, 2014 3:28:29 PM | 22

Ill believe it when I see it. The problem is everywhere for everyone, that those who wield the real power in Germany, the EU and of course the US, form a transnational ruling elite. The aristocracy of finance capital. What looks like an international problem to us, is a provincial problem to them. And public opinion, lets face it, is, shall we say not one of their greatest concerns. Unless the power of that system of transnational finance-capitalist empire is broken, its not going to be threatened by what are essentially regional political problems to it.

Posted by: Marc | Jul 4, 2014 3:33:11 PM | 23

putting aside dh's comment @17 for a moment, my problem with @16 bob and @18 not-tg at the moment is this: the financial system seems designed to keep europe in the fold of the usa $ sphere, along with a few other prominent players... until this changes - collapse of the us$ would be the key - i think these relationships will continue on.. while the european leadership might not be happy with what is taking place in ukraine, they are still tied in with the us$ system and at the mercy of the whims of these financial oligarchs that are directing things monetarily.. that is how i see it.

Posted by: james | Jul 4, 2014 3:49:21 PM | 24

i guess i am sorta saying the same thing as marc @23, but marc is maybe a more nuanced view, which doesn't hinge just on the us$ but perhaps a basket of currencies which is how i understand international finances too..

Posted by: james | Jul 4, 2014 3:53:37 PM | 25

No, there will be a division, and very soon, between Germany and the US. It will be interesting to see how the neocons in the State Department play this. By their actions they appear not to take the economics of Europe into their calculations.

Posted by: Bob In Portland | Jul 4, 2014 2:33:11 PM | 16

Yes they have and if the EU/Germany stand by Amerika the economies of the EU will fall and no longer compete with Amerika. I hope they move away for the people in Europe but the other thing is EU nations will need to do is get rid of all the goldman sax former banksters employees in their govt.

Yes b interesting you picked today but as Amerikan I have nothing to celebrate about as Amerika does its slow death spiral as a nation.

Posted by: jo6pac | Jul 4, 2014 4:27:26 PM | 26

French policy gives a hint to the real situation. Hollande and Fabius in the case of Libya and Syria were strictly aligned with the US war faction, led by Clinton. Now the same government is the most resisting to the same faction, now led by Kerry - although France has a lot less to lose in case of economic or even military warefare against Russia.
What makes the difference?
Right: Powerful nuclear weapons on board of french submarines and a military, that conserved some gaullistic tradition.

Germany can't divorce, it's under military threat. The anglosaxons attacked it 2011 with a biological weapon (the "EHEC"-affair, the pathogen was spread following an old british-american plan, see Dorset-experiments).

Posted by: TomGard | Jul 4, 2014 4:54:28 PM | 28

Before it can break with the US, Germany first needs to clear up the status of its sovereignty, something which it does not have:

Germany: a sovereign state? (in German)

The Federal Republic is the state, says the federal government. The legal status of our country is still completely unclear, however, some people disagree in the country. This status is anything but perfectly clear and quite different from what we believe, these opponents claim, contrasting the standard, established position of our politicians. In any case, our sovereignty over the victors of World War II has very narrow limits. Many do not know this, including those who were disappointed that, after the U.S. invasion of Iraq, overflight rights were not denied to the United States. …

In 1990, the GDR joined the Federal Republic, pursuant the newly Article 23 of the Basic Law (constitution). Accession took place on the basis of the above-mentioned four-plus-two agreement, which is the fundamental agreement or contract between the four victors of WW2 and the temporarily existing Sub States FRG and GDR. As a result, Germany has now recovered its full sovereignty in accordance with Article 7 (2). That sounds good initially, but unfortunately there's a catch. The right of occupying powers, defined in the "Convention on the Settlement of Matters Arising war and occupation" – last modified 1954 – continues to apply in crucial parts.

This contract - also called a "transition treaty" because it was to guide the occupied state to halfway normal diplomatic relations - significantly limited the sovereignty of Germany. This contract was suspended with the entry into force of the four-plus-two-contract. But an additional agreement of 27-28. September 1990 on the Treaty establishing the relationship of the Federal Republic of Germany and the three powers, as well as to the reconciliation agreement, though it stated that the allied provisions were repealed – it is nevertheless specified that, subject to the provisions of point 3, certain parts of the occupation law Transition Agreement remain in effect – for example, Articles 1, 2 and 3 (text in the Annex).

See also:
Deutschland souverän? Die Rolle der “Kanzlerakte”

Unsurprisingly, German Wikipedia claims that the existence of the Kanzlerakte (Chancellor Act) – which specifies the ways in which the Federal Republic must submit to USG – is a conspiracy theory, even though the above blog post proves that it is very real.

Posted by: Demian | Jul 4, 2014 4:56:43 PM | 29

@29 - Demian, I think Germans have not been aware of this, but it is showing up in different forums and people do not like it. I am sure sooner or later, my guess sooner, this will be discussed. Germans definitely do not want to be ruled by the US.

I have no idea how this will be handled, but it will be interesting to watch.

Posted by: Fran | Jul 4, 2014 5:04:21 PM | 30


Nothing to handle - in 2 days it will be forgotten by german government.

Posted by: Anonymous | Jul 4, 2014 5:11:30 PM | 31

Europe needs Russia for mainly gas and other resources.

Moneyjunkies want it all.

Posted by: Paty Kerry | Jul 4, 2014 5:12:16 PM | 32

Leaked: US think-tank plan on E. Ukraine suggests internment camps, executions Great, RAND comes up with a plan straight out of the NAZI playbook and Porky Poroshenko implements it because of course the Maidan "revolution" ultimately was carried out by a bunch of US-backed neonazis. Fills one with real patriotism on this 4th of July.

Posted by: OIFVet | Jul 4, 2014 5:23:25 PM | 33

To quote a trite (aren’t all) but appropriate proverb:

‘What goes around, Comes around.’

Germany has moved toward what the US, at least obsessively stood for in the mid 20th century, and the US has essentially been moving toward everything epitomized by the nefarious elements of NAZI Germany then.

A situation I find quite telling today is how Germany is moving away from the “perpetual growth dependent on finite resources” meme, i.e. fossil fuel based energy and economy, toward renewable based energy/economy systems. Especially since Fukushima, Germany has been moving steadily in that direction. I can’t be sure just what data is but the direction has been consistently upward and official policy is apparently supporting this move. The latest statistic I’ve seen is

...Germany’s impressive streak of renewable energy milestones continued, with renewable energy generation surging to a record portion — nearly 75 percent — of the country’s overall electricity demand by midday. With wind and solar in particular filling such a huge portion of the country’s power demand, electricity prices actually dipped into the negative...

My observation is that there is a growing movement globally, and domestically, to estrange from the hegemony of US imperialism and repression. A glimmering of light in a dark world? I certainly want to believe that.

Posted by: juannie | Jul 4, 2014 5:54:18 PM | 34

@JSorrentine (12):

How could the leaders of sovereign nations outside the US have become such total and complete fucking traitors to the people they titularly represent?

I'm sure oil had a lot to do with it. The Germans were never able to acquire enough natural resources on their own (WWI and WWII) to become industrially self-sufficient. And the British and the French lost all their colonies after WWII, so they relied on us to hold down the middle east for them. (This goes for Japan and S. Korea, too.)

That's also why Washington is paranoid about Europe getting so much oil from Russia. Remember that, in the 80's when the Soviets first wanted to build a pipeline into W. Europe, the US nipped that idea in the bud.

In this world, he who has the oil makes the rule.

Posted by: Seamus Padraig | Jul 4, 2014 6:02:24 PM | 35

Today Novorussia, tomorrow Detroit. Baltimore. Clevland. Newark Milwaukee

It WILL be us or them.

Posted by: Marc | Jul 4, 2014 6:15:46 PM | 36

@Seamus Padraig #35:

I think your explanation is self-contradictory because (1) as juannie just pointed out, Germany depends on oil less and less; (2) Germany can get all its fossil fuel needs satisfied by Russia, which is a reliable partner.

The short answer to JSorrentine's question "How could the leaders of sovereign nations outside the US have become such total and complete fucking traitors to the people they titularly represent?" is that these nations are not sovereign, as I suggested for the German case in comment #29.

Reasons why European countries besides Germany lack sovereignty have been touched on in this thread already; some of them are (1) European countries are locked into the international financial system that the US controls; (2) NATO is essentially a US force occupying Europe; (3) EU countries have largely ceded their sovereignty to Brussels, which is controlled by USG in various ways; (4) European elites have, by various means, been conditioned to be atlanticists.

Posted by: Demian | Jul 4, 2014 6:28:29 PM | 37

Could some Germans here tell us how the situation in the former Ukraine is currently being reported by the German press?

I glance at the home page of the FAZ occasionally, and I have lately not seen any reports about the Ukraine, even though there is now a humanitarian crisis in Novorossia, in the middle of Europe.

It would be easy for German TV to just use video footage from Russian TV to report what is going on. Does German TV do that at all?

If German elites are serious about breaking with the US, a good place to start would be to report that the US has organized a genocide in the Ukraine.

Posted by: Demian | Jul 4, 2014 6:56:11 PM | 38

Ok this is nothimg more than "fashionable nonsense"

@Seamus Padraig #35:I think your explanation is self-contradictory because (1) as juannie just pointed out, Germany depends on oil less and less;

Posted by: Demian | Jul 4, 2014 6:28:29 PM | 37

Here's the proof,

From that graph one can see that renewables have taken away from Nuke and coal, hardly any from oil. Oil consumption has remained fairly steady

Posted by: lol | Jul 4, 2014 7:45:24 PM | 39

Ukraine: Berlin foreign ministers meeting brings no solution

Steinmeier commented on the agreement: “This is not the solution to all problems. This is not a miracle formula, which makes everything good overnight. But it is a first and important step towards a bilateral ceasefire.”

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov expressly thanked Steinmeier and said the ceasefire would be essential to prevent further casualties among the civilian population and provide a chance of reaching an agreement between the sides in the conflict. The Russian government also agreed on joint border controls with Ukrainian border guards after the conclusion of a cease-fire agreement.

While the foreign ministers were negotiating in Berlin, Kiev continued its military offensive against eastern Ukrainian towns and villages with unrestrained brutality.

President Poroshenko is determined to create facts on the ground by killing as many insurgents as possible and terrorizing the majority of the civilian population that rejects his government. In this he has the full backing of the Western powers.

On Monday, the White House supported his decision to end the ceasefire and to start a new offensive. Poroshenko had the right to defend his country, a spokesperson for President Barack Obama declared.

A similar statement was made by the outgoing president of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso, who announced his “sympathy for this decision.”

Representatives of Germany and France were somewhat more reserved in their comments. They had previously repeatedly called on Poroshenko to extend the ceasefire. But that demand, like the foreign ministers’ meeting on Wednesday in Berlin, was made mainly for domestic political and tactical reasons. Both governments are trying to pose publicly as arbitrators rather than warmongers. As their economies would suffer far more than the US economy from economic sanctions and trade war with Russia, both Germany and France have not yet gone as far as the United States in adopting bellicose rhetoric against Russia.

In their basic orientation, however, they agree with the United States. They are determined to break Ukraine from its close economic and political ties to Russia and integrate it into the sphere of influence of the EU and NATO. This in turn will isolate and weaken Russia, forcing it eventually into a relation of greater dependence on the imperialist powers.

Germany in particular is vigorously pursuing this goal. For years, foundations attached to German political parties have supported and financed nationalist and anti-Russian forces in Ukraine. Berlin played a very active role in the Maidan protests, the subsequent toppling of President Viktor Yanukovych, and the rise to power of the billionaire oligarch Poroshenko.

In so doing, German imperialism was once again adopting its traditional policy of expansion towards the east. Germany occupied Ukraine in both the First and Second World War. The Berlin administration also works together with ultra-right forces such as Svoboda and the Fatherland Party, which pay tribute to former Nazi collaborators.

Posted by: john francis lee | Jul 4, 2014 7:59:07 PM | 40

Don't be so naive. Remember former German Defense Minister Gutenberg was found to be leaking German defense secrets to the Americans (treason, I believe)

Posted by: Michele | Jul 4, 2014 8:07:09 PM | 41

"The short answer to J.Sorrentine's question "How could the leaders of sovereign nations outside the US have become such total and complete fucking traitors to the people they titularly represent?" is that these nations are not sovereign, as I suggested for the German case in comment #29."

None of these puppet governments, however, treats either its national interests or its electorates with anything close to the contempt with which the American people are treated by their government.

In other words, being "total and complete fucking traitors to the people they ...represent" would appear to be unrelated to the matter of sovereignty since the US government, which collects other nations' sovereignties like scalps, is the worst of the lot.

A dictatorship such as Egypt cares more about public reaction to its policies than the "democracy" of the United States where, with complete impunity the government impoverishes the population, transfers vast amounts of tax money, collected largely from the poor, to the rich, and treats its Constitution in a way that would make toilet paper protest at the indignity.

Posted by: bevin | Jul 4, 2014 9:30:46 PM | 42

This is the answer (and I hope it will happen soon):
The Russians have the very best sheets in their hands, one can imagine. They could, for example, conclude a peace treaty with Germany, on the basis of the status quo. Since Willy Brandt all Chancellor guarantee the Polish western border, the Russians could keep Königsberg and the northern East Prussia. The Russians don't make any claims, they only explain formally the Second World War to be ended. China as a second victorious power follows that, for them it is only a friendly gesture that costs absolute nothing. All this raises the Western powers in a tight spot, they must renounce their right of occupation or reveal itself as an axis of evil. The enemy states clause of the UN would become obsolete also and should be deleted.

Another option would be to reveal what the Red Army has found in the adoption of the concentration camp Auschwitz. Since especially in Merkel-Germany constantly false figures and stories are spread in this way would have a clarity thanks confirmed documents arise. After all revisionists could wrap, with even Norman Finkelstein and his book "The Holocaust Industry" seen amply confirmed. At most the Israeli friends and the gentlemen of the Jewish Claims Conference would be after a little peeved - and the Central Council of Jews extremely indignant.

Posted by: Robert | Jul 4, 2014 9:41:08 PM | 43


Good idea...

Posted by: crone | Jul 4, 2014 11:05:19 PM | 44

Marc @ 23 & James @ 24: Right on target troops. All would do well by reading both posts, because it's the very essence of the world's problems.

Also, for your parusel:

Posted by: ben | Jul 5, 2014 12:21:30 AM | 45

"The economic breakdown after 2008 clearly had its roots in the United States and is, in Germany, blamed on lax U.S. regulations."

Right on b, wish this was common knowledge here in the U.S.

Posted by: ben | Jul 5, 2014 12:43:29 AM | 46

Hmmm...! That was quick...!

ISIL leader al-Baghdadi escapes to Syria after serious injury

Posted by: CTuttle | Jul 5, 2014 12:44:38 AM | 47

Syrian press reporting:

Sensational details about the attacks and Special Operations by the Syrian Armed Forces against ISIL mercenary gangs on the area of ​​Raqqa last night – REPORT

Sources by the military intelligence services knew that an important meeting of ISIL-ISIS commanders, at highest level, took place in ISIS headquarters.

The breakthrough is lightning-fast, with the following results:

* The entire terrorist group inside, more than 300 gunmen, are eliminated

* 4 regional commanders of ISIS, including Iraq, neutralized

* Commanders and figures at the highest level of ISIS-ISIL are taken prisoner: maximum restraint on their identity, but make sure that their catch will cause drastic changes in the entire region.

* Only one soldier of the special units wounded, mildly is assured.

Posted by: crone | Jul 5, 2014 1:19:07 AM | 48

Marine Le Pen is currently the great "white" hope of europe. She accurately describes europe as the new soviet union, I am sometimes very ashamed to live in the USA. Germans and other Europeans should feel sickened that they let themselves be used.

Posted by: Fernando | Jul 5, 2014 1:28:54 AM | 49

crone @48 Apparently, it's a full court press...! ;-)

Posted by: CTuttle | Jul 5, 2014 1:35:53 AM | 50

The talk about transnational finance capital overruling / taking over military power is terribly wrong, and obviously wrong too. It was Wall Street administration that forced about the 2008 "crisis", the president hopeful Obama directly participating, and they managed to drive the neocons from White House. But they failed to purge the criminal / fascist racket out of State Department and CIA, too.

Further there is this obvious contradiction within the assertion of ruling transnational finance capital: If the core of its interest and power would be the Dollar world currency, then it wouldn't be "transnational", but national. At the bottom of the error lies the misunderstanding, that finance capital is acting capital. Finance capital is fictitious capital, it is deemed to REACT, even if it tries to anticipate the profit rendering course of reaction.

There is a very small line between damaging the real economy of the EU in favour of the US-economy, by cutting it off the russian market, and bringing down the Dollar-economy altogether. That's why the Ukraine war gives Germany AND Russia the interest and (together) the means to blast Dollar-economy. Germany has the possibility to return to the Deutschmark - someone posted some figures of EU real economy above, which show this. Germany could keep most of EU-markets and the asian markets on top of it. There would be heavy crisis, but no demise. But it would mean demise of Dollar economy. So, who ever in the US gives Germany that incentive is no longer interested in keeping the Dollar economy, but wishes to adopt war-economy in the US on the basis of state-slavery for a huge part of the workforce. And that, obviously, is not the aim of "transnational finance capital".

Posted by: TomGard | Jul 5, 2014 1:40:32 AM | 51

For public relations German politicians will issue harsh condemnations of Uncle Sam, but behind the scenes it will be business as usual. Big Dog ain't worried by no Little Dog yapping.

Posted by: Buford Pusser | Jul 5, 2014 2:06:09 AM | 52


White hope?

Posted by: Anonymous | Jul 5, 2014 2:53:38 AM | 53

So while Foreign aircraft pour into Iraq, Iraq wants it $40 Billion back from US...!

Posted by: CTuttle | Jul 5, 2014 3:18:08 AM | 54

Linda Oliver
1 min
FEAR IS THE NEW BLACK: The Americans are not in good form financially & their reputation is in shreds - but that does not in any way mean they will not use other people as cannon fodder to get what they want. They are using the conflict in Ukriane to divide Europe.
Just one example: yesterday Moldova announced that Russia’s Rossiya-24 television channel will be banned with effect in 2015. See the last line of the draft bill: "Directs the Broadcasting Board of Governors and the Voice of America (VOA) to provide Congress with a plan for increasing and maintaining through FY2017 the quantity of U.S.-funded Russian-language broadcasting into countries of the former Soviet Union, with priority for broadcasting into Ukraine, Georgia, and Moldova."
Not only have the CIA reinvented the al Qaeda Bogey Man in the form of ISIS whose leader al Baghdadi has not been captured on film since 'at least' 2006, they are busy breathing life into a revised version of the Red Scare. How many Americans are even aware of this bill - still in draft form?
READ ALSO: Journalists union: Moldova’s ban on broadcasting of Russian channel ‘unfriendly act’
The Moscow Union of Journalists considers the ban on the broadcasting of Russia’s Rossiya-24 television channel in Moldova to be aimed against Russia and Russian media. This view has expressed Pavel Gusev, the union’s head and editor-in-chief of the Moskovsky Komsomolets daily.
Moldova bans Russia 24 TV news channel from broadcasting in its territory
“The ban on the broadcasting of Rossiya-24 channel, popular with Russian-speaking population, is an extremely unfriendly act against our media,” Gusev said, adding that by doing so, Moldova repeated Ukraine’s bitter experience, although there was no actual conflict between Moldova and Russia.
“The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs should notify the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe. It is unclear why the OSCE remains silent,” he said, noting that both Russian authorities and foreign services should take measures in this situation.
Banning the broadcasting of Russian TV channels in Moldova infringed upon the rights and interests of the country’s Russian-speaking population, he said.
Earlier in the day, the Coordination Radio and TV Broadcasting Council of Moldova suspended the programs of Rossiya-24 channel’s programs until January 1, 2015, due to the “inconsistency of its programming with the provisions of Moldova’s Broadcasting Code”.
At present, the broadcasting of four Russian channels – Channel One, RTR-Planeta, Rossiya-24, and NTV-Mir is suspended in Ukraine.

Posted by: brian | Jul 5, 2014 3:43:42 AM | 55

This could be why Strelkov wasn't online friday. Militia Slavyansk broke through the blockade and entered Kramatorsk

"Eyewitnesses reported a 50 units of military equipment fighters DND, which managed to get into the city through the fields.

According to eyewitnesses, in Kramatorsk from Slavyansk broke military convoy militias, despite the shelling of the Ukrainian security forces. Three KAMAZ, two tanks and eight vehicles arrived in the city centre to the local headquarters of the militia. In addition, speaks of the appearance of one of bateer and five cars in the neighborhood of azure.

Users of the social network Twitter to inform about 50 units of military equipment militias that erupted in Kramatorsk on fields. From the side of the mountain Karachun Ukrainian military led by machines massive fire. It is also reported about shooting in the White village near the town of Slavyansk. Information about the breakthrough of the blockade by the militia, confirmed the head of the Ukrainian interior Ministry Arsen Avakov.

Fourth of July Ukrainian punitive continued bombardment of Slavyansk and its surroundings. In the attack, according to preliminary data, six people were killed. In the private sector, several houses completely destroyed. Everywhere the broken bricks, pieces of slate and twisted metal. The land is riddled with bullets.

Earlier, the head of the army of the self-proclaimed Donetsk national Republic Igor Strelkov stated that the Ukrainian army is going to erase Slavyansk from the face of the earth within the next two weeks. He added that during the declared ceasefire , the armed forces of Ukraine transferred to the South-East a large number of armored vehicles.

According to him, more than 60 heavy guns Ukrainian law enforcers is aimed to Semenovka, Slavyansk and Kramatorsk. Two dozen Grad, Smerch and Uragan continuously bombard the city."

Posted by: scalawag | Jul 5, 2014 4:43:51 AM | 56

July 1 all Western banks of the world are now compelled to report the American citizens' bank accounts they hold to the IRS, and NSA is watching every one of them to comply.

July 1 every West Coast ports' union contracts ended, and negotiations are stuck over union demands that their salaries be increased to offset the 40% ACA 'Cadillac Tax' on their average $95,000 a year in benefits. Oh, and 'raises they are due'. Ain't no way they are going to get $50,000 a year salary hikes!

Long strike at critical pre-Christmas manufactured goods inventory shipments. Obama will order them back to work. Union slowdowns will ripple through US economy, creating another quarter of negative GDP growth. Early fall rains will wipe out record US corn and cotton crops (I don't follow soybeans). Feeder cattle will be sent to slaughter, but no demand. Already weak Christmas-season inventory purchases will cancel orders in the pipeline.

Port strike will affect all Chinese trade goods with America, both ways. Add now sharply contracting US economy (A friend of mine says DOL's 'new jobs' are part-time minimum wage retail service), and guaranteed 'weak' holiday season (China is forcing down the remnimbi to keep factory production high), all spell China commercial debt defaults imploding. Hot money is pouring into Manila R/E, of all places, further weakening the China situation through outflows. Add democracy movement in Hong Kong. Add oil war with Viet Nam.

In late October, the ground will freeze in Ukraine, Russia will cut off their natural gas, national riots will spread including EU, there will be massive factory closures across China as the remnimbi unpegs, and WW3 will begin in MENA-CIS-SEA. (A friend in Dubai says commercial debt defaults there are a powderkeg about to blow).

So, about 100 days. Wasn't that a Schlesinger title?

Party like it's 1999!

Posted by: chip nikh | Jul 5, 2014 5:26:17 AM | 57 As Yulia bodies of Ukrainians trades

"Information Agency Hammer Of Truth Intimidad" published the correspondence between the lawyer and the Trustee Yulia Tymoshenko Sergey Vlasenko with German buyers internal organs Ukrainian soldiers, and just random people in the clutches of the Nazis. They are dismantled by authorities and sent to the EU, that is "European happiness" of Ukraine.

(Extracts from the correspondence - see site)

"The new Nuremberg"- the trial of fascist juntamust thoroughly investigate this information.

In the meantime we can console ourselves by saying:

Every secret will, sooner or later, it becomes clear.

Read more at the source."

Looks like another Ukraine-Israeli connection...

Posted by: scalawag | Jul 5, 2014 5:32:10 AM | 58

Good news for civilians in east of Ukraine: the fascist and biggest asshole Igor Strelkov fled the city of Slowjansk this morning obviously with the whole bunch of his robber compatriots. Even some months ago this macho was still drowning out loud about his absolute power, claiming openly that he would not kill doctors and academics who refused to support the so-called rebels but would force them to dig trenches in forward fighting lines.

So called fighters with self-given names like "Pinochet" do not deserve anything else than total defeat. The people in the eastern Ukraine need to learn that it makes no sense to fight the Kiev nationalist and some fascist groups with the same ideology, imported from the most backward right wing and fascist groups from imperial Russia. I hope that the consequence they take is to resist open military pressure from whose side whatsoever by civilian disobedience and actively barrickading troops (ukrainian and so-called rebels) with their own corpses as they did succesfully in March already. But why didn't they follow up this strategy, not with hundreds but with hundreds of thousands?

Also very happy that the assholes and fascist commenters here and exsp. on Saker got what is deserved to them: total defeat, crawl back into your holes!!!

"Against the regime in Kyiv and the junta in the East! AWU-Kyiv statement on the conflict in the Eastern regions"

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 6:23:41 AM | 59

War against war!
Statement of leftists and anarchists on the confrontation in Ukraine

In the ongoing conflict, we support neither Ukrainian government nor pro-Russian factions that established their authority on the portion of Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts. The working class (i.e. everyone who has neither power nor capital) is equally alien both to the concept of ​​unitary Ukraine and to the ideas of ​​”federalization” or creation of new states — these are merely the games of politicians, drawing blood from ordinary people. We, the left and the anarchists, should primarily adhere to the needs of the working class in the war-torn regions of Ukraine, protect their rights and freedoms.

Against LPR and DPR!

Donetsk and Luhansk “people’s republics” are a collection of warring right-wing juntas. Rights and freedoms, which are granted to the rest of Ukraine, are not available in the territories under their control. Public manifestation of political dissent is not possible there; worker rights activists who criticized DPR were kidnapped and tortured. Upon preservation of these regimes the working class will be completely deprived of any opportunity to defend their legal rights. The only possible form of the “left” activity in DPR and LPR is the ritual worship of Soviet symbols, which has nothing to do with the workers’ interests.

The reactionary regimes of DPR and LPR are not interested in peaceful solution, they aim at escalating the conflict even further, which is confirmed by the promises of their leaders to “get to Kharkov”, “to Kiev” and “to Lviv”.

Against the Ukrainian government!

Ukrainian authorities profit from war contracts, send war reservists and untrained conscripts to to the frontline of the civil war, and attempt to use the protracted military conflict to strengthen their positions. Contrary to the forced rhetorics of the unity between the government and people, we must resist all attempts to curtail social guarantees, political rights and freedoms, all manifestations of police and military violence, all the incitement of nationalist and religious prejudice among soldiers and common people. For the ruling class, war is the opportunity of a crackdown in political and social spheres. In struggle against the aggression of Putin’s regime and his satellites, Ukrainians should not neglect the danger of a “Putin” who can emerge in their own country.

After their victory over the “separatists”, whose position is doomed without the external military support, the strengthened Kiev regime will once again become a major threat to the working class. If the oppressed unite with the ruling class under the patriotic banners, the crackdown on human rights and freedoms, which was to be avoided by the Maidan, is inevitable under the new government. Parliament is comprised of the representatives of conservative and far-right parties (“Batkivshyna”, “Svoboda”), which had repeatedly sponsored obscurantist bills – in particular, the restitution of death penalty, restriction of reproductive rights, preventive arrests on political motives; the charters of these parties contain appeals to ban political strikes. In many of the initiatives they mimic such of the Putin’s regime, of the Party of Regions or of the Communist Party. Despite their plummeting ratings, such rhetorics are perceived as a legitimate part of the political field.

Against fascists on both sides of the frontline!

We unhesitatingly oppose the legitimization of ultra-nationalist and criminal groups as members of the “anti-terrorist operation”. However, we should note that among those fighting on the other side are the volunteers from European fascist organizations and the ultra-reactionaries from Russia, and pro-Kremlin propaganda only portrays them as “anti-fascist warriors”.

Against war incitement under the guise of pacifism!

We are equally disgusted by saber rattling and cheering the killing of enemies, on the one side, and by pseudo-pacifist speculations of the people directly responsible for the escalation of violence, on the other. Pacifism is neither compatible with the backing of the “New Russia” regimes or expressing any kind of sympathy towards them, nor with the support of Ukrainian militarism.

Against lies and propaganda from all sides!

Information space and the media have become a genuine battlefield, the people of Ukraine and Russia are being fed opposite in content but equally spurious propaganda that strengthens militancy on both sides of the conflict and sets workers on against other; this allows governments to channel social discontent into a safe direction. Therefore, it is important not to follow the crowd, which is pleased to receive the news it wants to hear, but to keep a sober mind and stay true to our principles. Only time will help to reconstruct the events truthfully.

For the development of the labor movement!

The working class in Ukraine is still in its infancy and is does not take part in the conflict as a subject. We need to formulate and defend the social agenda and help the development of organizations that express the interests of workers. Only a strong labor movement that realizes its interests will be able to establish peace in Ukraine.

We oppose involuntary military service, and demand to end the conscription and release all soldiers who do not want to fight.

We support the campaign of aiding internally displaced persons from the war-torn regions, and we are ready to support deserters and conscripts who evade service on ethical and political grounds. AWU-Kharkiv already runs a campaign to support the internally displaced people in its area – we urge all libertarians and left to join in or do the same in their areas.

We express our support and solidarity with the workers’ and trade union initiatives that fight for their labor rights; we are ready to actively support those who are struggling against DPR and LPR from the class standpoint. They are in a much more serious danger today than activists from Central and Western Ukraine.

No war but the class war!

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 6:28:18 AM | 60

#59 - Another mindwarp victim. Strelkov a fascist? What a complete fucking idiot you are Mr Thomas. War is peace, freedom is slavery, ignorance is strenght.

Posted by: RobertB | Jul 5, 2014 6:42:22 AM | 61

I find these posts comical.

As long as countries continue to signup for FATCA... The US and Europe are still asshole tight.

When Germany pulls out of FATCA that will be the big sign.

When Germany shuts down the US military bases that will be a big sign.

Words mean nothing. Actions matter.

Posted by: FATCA | Jul 5, 2014 6:48:41 AM | 62

@ 59/60
Brave statements, but totally irrelevant and heavily misleading in one point: Fascists are defined by the real state power, they rely on. The Donbass "Juntas" have no state power to rely on, just a faction in russian politics, the Kremlin has to restrain, which is done partly by using it, partly by marginalizing. NATO is the force that nurtures russian fascism. The Kremlin can't fight it without alienating the rescources of nationalist dedication, which they need to resist NATO-attacks.

Posted by: TomGard | Jul 5, 2014 7:07:19 AM | 63

The same applies to the Palestinians fighting the occupation: they should rather follow the example of people like Omar Barghouti of civil disobedience and resistance and BDS on the basis of human and social rights of every human being instead of continuing a so-called armed struggle on the basis of a fascist religious believe against an enemy fighting on a similar believe.

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 7:07:41 AM | 64

"equally disgusted" by the aggressors and the victims, aye Thomas?

Trotskyites as usual working for big capital

the Donbass are not fighting for Russia or for Putin; that is why they are being wiped out

Posted by: Cu Chulainn | Jul 5, 2014 7:10:50 AM | 65

@63: so Hitler, Mussolini or anybody of the fascists and their resp. policies in history only became "fascist" after conquering state power? what a bullshit...

and you are really underestimating the imperial russian power and possibilities, the world is not dominated by a single power like NATO, they have their share but it is steadily diminuishing

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 7:13:17 AM | 66


Palestinians have already tried civilian disobedience.

Posted by: Anonymous | Jul 5, 2014 7:27:58 AM | 67

@67: ask Omar B., he is often around in Europe, the US or like this weekend in Cape Town: he says not all all enough, too many people too much posing as religious machos

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 7:32:43 AM | 68

thomas 60, utter bullshit from the fake left. Not even close to Trotskyist, Cu Chulainn.

Have you shown up on this thread after Troll2015 disappeared?

Posted by: okie farmer | Jul 5, 2014 7:41:44 AM | 69


ASk him about what?
If you believe palestinians havent tried "peaceful" means you dont know much about the conflict, in fact palestinians have been very silent for the past year/s, what gains have they made?

Posted by: Anonymous | Jul 5, 2014 8:07:30 AM | 70

why are you posting a question if you know everything already???

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 8:19:11 AM | 71


I dont know what you are going to reply, thats the foundation of asking a question.

Posted by: Anonymous | Jul 5, 2014 8:34:28 AM | 72

I told you already, ask Omar and a lot of others in the civilian and BDS movement in Palestine, there are a lot who say that the violent religious macho style sort of "resistance" has completely failed and only brought death and suffering on the people because this way the army is always better, more experienced. But they cannot shoot on people just using their bodies not for self-destruction but for resistance and disobedience

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 8:48:12 AM | 73

BTW, the best read for yesterdays 4. July is this, sorry for posting on July 5th only:

The Counter-Revolution of 1776
Slave Resistance and the Origins of the United States of America
Gerald Horne

363 pages
April, 2014
ISBN: 9781479893409

The successful 1776 revolt against British rule in North America has been hailed almost universally as a great step forward for humanity. But the Africans then residing in the colonies overwhelmingly sided with London. In this trailblazing book, Gerald Horne complements his earlier celebrated Negro Comrades of the Crown, by showing that in the prelude to 1776, the abolition of slavery seemed all but inevitable in London, delighting Africans as much as it outraged slaveholders, and sparking the colonial revolt.

In the prelude to 1776, more and more Africans were joining the British military, and anti-slavery sentiments were deepening throughout Britain. And in the Caribbean, rebellious Africans were chasing Europeans to the mainland. Unlike their counterparts in London, the European colonists overwhelmingly associated enslaved Africans with subversion and hostility to the status quo. For European colonists, the major threat to security in North America was a foreign invasion combined with an insurrection of the enslaved. And as 1776 approached, London-imposed abolition throughout the colonies was a very real and threatening possibility—a possibility the founding fathers feared could bring the slave rebellions of Jamaica and Antigua to the thirteen colonies. To forestall it, they went to war.

The so-called Revolutionary War, Horne writes, was in large part a counter-revolution, a conservative movement that the founding fathers fought in order to preserve their liberty to enslave others—and which today takes the form of a racialized conservatism and a persistent racism targeting the descendants of the enslaved. The Counter-Revolution of 1776 drives us to a radical new understanding of the traditional heroic creation myth of the United States.

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 8:55:32 AM | 74

thomas, your support of the massacres of the Donbass resistance shows that you are at best a confused servant of capital

the reference you provide in 74 can be better understood on reading Liberalism A Counter-History, London, Verso, 2011 by Domenico Losurdo

Posted by: Cu Chulainn | Jul 5, 2014 9:18:26 AM | 75

Machos who think in penis-weapon terms and believe in the power of guns instead in the power of self-consciousness and democracy are self-responsible for every massacre inflicted on them

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 9:37:30 AM | 76

@62 Killing Verizon's contracts amounts to targeted sanctions against the U.S. Arresting a spy for probably harmless activities or passing info available in newspapers is a message that the German NSA committee is real. As far as sanctions against Russia, Siemens put an end to that.

Posted by: NotTimothyGeithner | Jul 5, 2014 9:38:31 AM | 77

Thomas;So the Israelis are allowed to be total monsters while the Palestinians have to take it lying down huh?And of course the Palestinians have been laying low militarily,as how can they compete with the monsters arsenal?The bastards burned that kid alive.My God,where is the outrage by the world to this continuing atrocity?Oh,yeah,the monsters own the medium,the info and control thereby the populace.
As far as German public opinion,do ethnic Germans own their media,or is it the same as America,a total lockdown on discourse?Ted Rall was fired at Pando? or some other publication along with David Sirota,both antiwar voices(few and far between)silenced.
And the Guardian trolls of homo feminine and zionazis are crowing over reports of Ukrainian army advances.I mean really,if Russia was actually involved,does anyone think they would be defeated by Ukraine?

Posted by: dahoit | Jul 5, 2014 9:40:18 AM | 78

the reference you provide in 74 can be better understood on reading Liberalism A Counter-History, London, Verso, 2011 by Domenico Losurdo

why better? both books provide good reading on the issue, and then you add the South African history:

And the Boer treck inland South Africa from the 1830's on was a response of the mainly dutch slave holders to the abolition of slavery by british colonial rule in 1834. Not to say that british colonial rule was in much praise anyway but this treck can be compared to the US founders move in 1776

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 9:48:06 AM | 79

Does this mean America will no longer be able to purchase German products? Because that's all that really matters. All the political grandstanding is bullshit if the two countries are conducting Business As Usual.

If it comes to that, I say good riddance to German products and while they're at it, good riddance to Chinese products. America can start producing its own goods and price oil and gas at cost to extract plus a reasonable profit and let Europe, China and Russia charge each other a 300% or more premium for not much more than popping a tap in the ground.

In fact, it will be grand to see Russia roll over Europe with the help of its ally Germany as it did 70-80 years prior. This time, Europe's on its own, and I, for one, hope they become one of Putin's vassals and get their comeupance once and for all. It will be the end of France, the end of Germany and the end of all of Europe as we know it and knew it. Good riddance, and when that time comes, and it is coming, I'll be kind enough to not say "I told you so."

Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Jul 5, 2014 9:53:54 AM | 80

The fine on BNP is smaller than expected. They will be able to pay it easily.

An article in Forbes stated that 85% of fines imposed on Banks by the USA (as nobody else does it!) were on US banks (no link, but see the Economist for some comparisons.)

UBS got off very easily twice, tax evasion and the Libor scandal. I have always believed that UBS and US (in the shape of Obama) were tightly linked but have nothing to back that up.

Rumor has it, btw, that the next in line is Deutsche Bank. Unsurprising, it is huge, one of the biggest mega-banks and quite dirty one guesses. How will the Germans feel about that?

What the US is doing here (along with FATCA) is imposing its type of functioning on the world, a kind of unilateral globalisation and of course raking in money. It is not attacking Europe, not specifically. Despite what the Marine le Pen’s like to spout (US attacking France. F media have gone off the rails completely.) Banks are easy prey: the crash of 2008 turned the public against finance, and pols spouted about regulation, reigning in, etc. This seems to have taken the form mostly of policing and punishment by the US. Which is kinda what you’d expect. - the Economist

FATCA flies and works for similar reasons, the public is against tax evaders. Voices against it have been drowned out (Republicans, foreigners abroad..) So far only a few countries have signed on or have said they will collaborate in the future. Switzerland (it is in and compliance all set up) - Germany has promised to collaborate but not done yet (afaik.) As for South Africa or Japan, who knows. These negotiations can take many years. However FATCA is law now for US persons 1, the negotiations concern the responsibility of foreign banks and foreign financial institutions to divulge info. on their clients.

1. persons because the definition is not ‘citizens’ or ‘holders of a US passport’ etc.

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 5, 2014 9:55:27 AM | 81

@60, "No war but the class war!"

Lol, you're a dim bulb; what do you think the war against Fascism is? And how is it fought, buy mouthing jargon and doing fuck-all?

Oh, and those are rhetorical questions. You needn't answer.

Posted by: ruralito | Jul 5, 2014 10:00:31 AM | 82


..or you can just answer my 2 question i had?

Posted by: Anonymous | Jul 5, 2014 10:04:23 AM | 83

Lol, you're a dim bulb; what do you think the war against Fascism is? And how is it fought, buy mouthing jargon and doing fuck-all?

The irony. The irony. In Russia, with the passage of one more of Putin's Fascist laws, you would be considered to be in breach of said law with that uncontrollable potty mouth of yours. It doesn't bother me (your cursing), but it sure does bother Vlad, and since it's his country and his country is growing and expanding its borders, he gets to tell you that if you don't refrain from swearing in public spaces, you'll be fined and/or imprisoned. One more contradiction to add to the heap. Go to Russia. All of you. Get out and go to Russia where you belong. You don't deserve and respect the freedom you have when you can't stand up against anyone anywhere who would take that freedom to curse from you.

The implication of this post and the majority of the comments is that America is the only country who's intelligence services spies and spying includes listening to phone conversations. They all do it, and they're all equally egregious in doing it. But no, it's always and only America, and that is American Exceptionalism at its finest. And here you all thought you had nothing in common with Obama when you're tied at the hip with him with your incessant American Exceptionalism.

Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Jul 5, 2014 10:22:12 AM | 84

Noirette @81

Unfortunately you do not have to look far for the connection in the UBS bank:

Phil Gramm - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

As of 2009, Gramm is employed by UBS AG as a vice chairman of the Investment Bank division. states that a vice chairman of a UBS division is "...appointed to support the business in their relationships with key clients."[39] He joined UBS in 2002 immediately after retiring from the Senate.[40]

Posted by: Fran | Jul 5, 2014 10:24:54 AM | 85

"...The people in the eastern Ukraine need to learn that it makes no sense to fight the Kiev nationalist and some fascist groups with the same ideology, imported from the most backward right wing and fascist groups from imperial Russia..."

There is some merit in Thomas's view.
He is, in my view, quite wrong to conclude the usefulness of civil disobedience in Palestine and I am not in agreement with other provocations he makes. So far as that is concerned it is a great pity that, rather than welcoming different viewpoints some commentators feel it useful to ridicule them and accuse those who present them of working for the bourgeoisie.

This results in those tedious slanging matches that disfigure this blog and lessen the impact of the important political effect it has by driving grown-ups away.

To return to the excerpt from Thomas's post:
It is certainly true that there has been, so far, a failure among the leaders of the Donbass movement to make an appeal to the masses. This is a point I made, several times, weeks ago. If you want people to commit themselves to a life and death struggle you have to offer them a programme rooted in contemporary reality. Which, in my view, means a socialist programme setting out concrete proposals for real improvement in the lives and prospects of the people.

Sadly the ideology of the Donbass leadership seems to be a mixture of Great Russian chauvinism, an appeal to that generation, born in the 1920s, who fought fascism and a sort of warmed over Tsarist mythology in which Orthodox Christianity supplies the social programme.
This has meant that, apart from the White Russians, the resistance in the east has been literally fighting to survive, instead of combining resistance with an appeal to the Ukrainian people, most of whom don't want either war or rule by oligarchs surrounded by gangs of nazis.
And it hasn't been working.

That having been said, these are desperate times. As has been revealed recently the Kiev junta is being advised (as in 'ordered') by the US to retrace the steps that Hitler took to pacify the Donbass in 1942. A new Phoenix programme designed to wipe out any critics or potential critics is likely to be implemented. Indeed it is probably being implemented already where the Ukrainian forces are in control.
And, as in 1942, the most obvious candidates to carry out pogroms, staff death squads and herd people into concentration camps are the Banderista fascists of Svoboda and Right Sektor.
And that reminds us of something else that Thomas got right, and has been ridiculed above, which is that the history of fascism shows that it is only after being given state power, by the Hindenburgs and Victor Emmanuels, advised by oligarchs, that fascism develops fully. Until then fascists are always small minorities reliant on the indulgence and even protection of the authorities for survival.
What this means in Ukraine is that the tiny fascist sects are likely to explode in numbers and take over the government, just as, in Italy they did. And the reason is that they alone, among the forces available to the ruling class, are enthusiastic about carrying out the 'dirty work' that the RAND Corporation is calling for. The army won't do it neither will any other decent Ukrainians, and mercenaries, though useful, cost too much, discredit their cause and are always likely to switch sides when it benefits them.
And by then it will be too late for the resistance to make a credible and passionate appeal to the masses to fight for their own survival and a decent future.
And calling Thomas names won't change that, anymore than Thomas's sneering at Palestinian resistance will defeat Israel.

Posted by: bevin | Jul 5, 2014 10:25:48 AM | 86

@76, lol, I give up! Join Golden Troll in the corner will ye, Spouting Thomas. The Untouchables.

Posted by: ruralito | Jul 5, 2014 10:25:52 AM | 87

"commentators feel it useful to ridicule"

The ridiculous are ridiculed, duh!

Posted by: ruralito | Jul 5, 2014 10:38:35 AM | 88

The Untouchables.

Posted by: ruralito | Jul 5, 2014 10:25:52 AM | 87

Those on the far "Left" are as much about "class" as those on the far "Right". In fact, they're so close on so many things, they may as well be touching, and as of late, they are in a deep embrace. There's not much distinguishing them at this point. Far "Leftists" using a lower class distinction as an insult. It doesn't get much more hypocritically ironic than that. I do so love the smell of validation in the morning.

Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Jul 5, 2014 10:40:15 AM | 89

There's no fate worse than being doubly-exploited and such is the fate of Palestinian women. They're screwed once by the Israelis, and then they're screwed again by the Palestinian males who maintain their ass backwards culture where women are second class citizens. The Kurds understand that to succeed in resistance, women must have equal rights and should be viewed as collaborative partners, not subservient. A great movie, by an Israeli filmmaker no less who doesn't present Israel or Palestine in a favorable light in it, is Lemon Tree

At its heart, Lemon Tree has the simplistic Blue Peter logic of many a Middle-East Conflict Film. There might be bureaucracies, politics, religion and culture in the way, but if ordinary people could just talk to each . . .

The 'ordinary people' are also usually those disenfranchised in a cross-cultural way. In Bridge Over the Wadi, they were children. In Lemon Tree, it is women who pick up the, 'if only we could live together' banner.

Salma is a Palestinian widow. She has lived on the green line border between Israel and the West Bank for decades. She tends a lemon grove. Handed down to her through generations. She barely scrapes an existence from it, but it is her whole world.

On the opposite side, the Israeli Defense Minister moves into a big new house facing her lemon grove. The Israeli security forces declare the proximity of Salma's trees a security threat. They issue orders to uproot them. Salma engages Ziad Daud, a Palestinian lawyer. They go to the Israeli Supreme Court to try to save the trees.

Meanwhile, Mira Navon, the Defense Minister's wife, is trapped in her luxurious new home but pretty miserable. She feels increasingly sympathetic to Salma's plight. Hubby makes public expressions of concern, but says he cannot go against the recommendations of security forces.

As an interim measure, Salma is prevented from entering the grove. The trees start to shrivel. This disparity is highlighted when the Navons throw a lavish party, with 'authentic Egyptian food.' But realise that that the caterer hasn't brought lemons. It seems a minor matter to pick up a few lemons from the adjoining grove . . .

With films like this, it is always tempting to look for bias. Although it was part-funded by the Israeli Film Council that doesn't make it pro-Israeli in this case. It's based on a true stories but (as always) there will be claims that it is too 'pro-Palestinian' or 'pro-Israeli' in the telling. Director Eran Riklis was born in Jerusalem, raised in USA, Canada and Brasil, graduated from film school in England, and now lives in Tel Aviv. He claims his film is, "about solitude as it is reflected in the lives of two women."

One of the film's main contributions is to explain the impossible deadlock and how both sides are pretty powerless, given their institutions, to change much. The Israeli Supreme Court verdict, when it comes, is gut-wrenching. But Palestinian officialdom seems more worried about propriety than the widow's attempts to protect her property. It is all superficially civilised. Lemon Tree initially disappoints me for not being more hard-hitting on political themes. But given how the politics of both sides can be excruciatingly tedious, Riklis has made a wise choice in turning real life political drama into a simple human interest story. In that, it Lemon Tree achieves something of a microcosm for the disputes. But does the film make creative and constructive inroads, or is it simply a pleasant and aesthetic way of not coming to terms?

Most of the comments I hear about how remarkably even-handed it is have come from liberal Israeli commentators. And there is much truth in their view. But a gulf still exists. There are no end of projects (and movies) focussing on peace initiatives between the two sides. Palestinians are often unhappy that such projects ignore the inequalities between them and Israeli Jews. Or act as a conscience-salve for the Israelis. "Existence first, co-existence later", has became a common Palestinian slogan. Lemons are a major crop in the area. They need a lot of water. Just like Salma, banished from her own grove, the Palestinians do not control their own water supply. Just like Salma, in times of crisis, they may lack the means of survival. Palestinians seeing Lemon Tree may agree about its even-handedness. Yet, like Salma, leave a little less sanguine about the value of emotional empathy between the two women. Or so sympathetic to the understanding Mira. Yet in the festering political deadlock, films of such beauty are still better than nothing.

Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Jul 5, 2014 10:52:00 AM | 90

@86: Don't be ignorant, I'm the least important on that question, better you make yourself knowledgeable with what Omar B. and his group and friends think, that's important. And also look at the other Barghouti, Marwan, who is in Israel jail for life but also has a quite different opinion now than 5 or 10 years ago.

There is another Barghouti, famous civil right organizer, Dr. Mustafa B.,

Marwan B.:

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 10:57:22 AM | 91

"I do so love the smell of validation in the morning."

That's your drawers.

Posted by: ruralito | Jul 5, 2014 10:58:04 AM | 92

Germany and energy, as it was mentioned several times.

Germany’s primary energy consumption from euan mearns (BP data, others show same) (coal here includes lignite etc.) 1965 - 2010

Merkel backs plan to cut Germany’s Green Energy subsidies

WSJ Jan 2014.

Somewhat similar to what happened in Spain.

For those interested in this aspect see, “Tilting at windmills”, by energy skeptic, who gives a look at the first *thorough* report on solar (in Spain.)

Germany is totally dependent on oil, coal, nat gas. and it’s ‘renewable’ push has more or less failed.

fran at 85, yes.

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 5, 2014 11:01:19 AM | 93

@51 TomGard

tom, i think you have some thoughts on this wrong actually. i don't say it is the us$ that is the basis for the financial power, but a basket of currencies that are linked up in such a way that they form a block, and that vy for ultimate control financially.. they are the us$, euro, and japanese yen. this is what the bank of settlements work with and this is one of the ways that countries like russia or china are kept out of having the same kind of control financially. it goes back to the bretton woods agreement in some ways.

the usa and europe is willing to economically sanction, or boycott countries and there are a few international systems at work that allow them to do this, as they favour these same currencies, while not acknowledging others.. this is one of the reasons russia has said it will create it's own system with the bric countries that will be an alternative means to this.

europe is essentially part of the financial axis that includes the usa. i don't know how germany finds a way to get from using the euro, to using the deutch mark! i can't see how that happens! germany is tied in with decisions that have to be decided somewhere other then in only germany.. perhaps you can tell me how you see it differently. thanks.

Posted by: james | Jul 5, 2014 11:40:06 AM | 94

@ Marc #23

I agree with you that it's an error to view current policies as essentially nationalistic rather than the more accurate trans-nationalistic.

On the surface, neoliberal politics may be organized along units of the nation-state, but realistically, effective control rests with the financial elites of NYC, London, Paris, Brussels, and Berlin, every single one of whom has loyalties and interests which have absolutely little to do with the individual nation states that they are nominally citizens of.

There will be no divorce between Germany and the United States until one or the other overthrows their entrenched elites which, unfortunately, is unlikely. Until then, the view that whatever conflicts exist between the EU and the US is just gossip for the rubes, hiding the real problems.

Not to say that differences don't exist, but when they do, it's primarily a difference of means rather than ends.

Posted by: sleepy | Jul 5, 2014 11:41:19 AM | 95

of course defining the price of oil in terms of us$ is another basic strategy that favours these same currencies too while marginalizing many others that aren't sitting at the supper table..

Posted by: james | Jul 5, 2014 11:44:19 AM | 96

@ thomas #74

No doubt slavery was a critical element of the American Revolution.

Having said that, I think there are some holes in the author's argument: in the hotbeds of independence were New England (most of which had abolished slavery by 1785) and Pennsylvania (home of the British Empire's first abolitionist society and in which slavery was abolished in 1780.

Posted by: sleepy | Jul 5, 2014 12:00:28 PM | 97

@51, 94, 96 et al: "Germany has the possibility to return to the Deutschmark - someone posted some figures of EU real economy above, which show this. Germany could keep most of EU-markets and the asian markets on top of it"

why should we - in Germany and Europe - be so stupid to change the euro currency? Why go back to the Deutschmark, why not to the Reichsmark, the Thaler, the Dukaten? your narrow and stupid world view leaves you without any imagination about what people(s) can achieve if they fuck on borderlines etc. and don't give a damn on nationalistic views.

Join the reactionary and right wing parties which just got less than 10% in the last european elections, for their heroic fight against the Euro, the dollar, and the dark masonic empire dominating us all!!!

Posted by: thomas | Jul 5, 2014 12:00:50 PM | 98

"In fact, they're so close on so many things, they may as well be touching, and as of late, they are in a deep embrace."

Yeah, right, and at Stalingrad they took off all their clothes.

Posted by: ruralito | Jul 5, 2014 12:02:13 PM | 99

Re: 97

A point to add--one of the gripes that the New England colonies had against London was that those colonies had abolished the slave trade, i.e., no new slaves could be brought into those colonies.

British law was in contradiction to those colonial laws, allowing the slave trade throughout the Empire, save for the UK itself.

I am not attempting to justify the Revolution as an anti-slavery movement, far from it, just showing that there were vast differences and competing interests both between and among the colonies themselves and the UK.

Posted by: sleepy | Jul 5, 2014 12:09:34 PM | 100

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