January 15, 2015
Open Thread 2015-03
News & views ...
Posted by b on January 15, 2015 at 02:06 PM | Permalink
Further vindication that MoA reporting was way out front of the rest on Israel/AQ cooperation. Al Monitor article reports that Israel was actually "mastermind" of some operations:
“Israeli support in the battle of Tal al-Hara was at a high level, and the Israeli army was the mastermind of this battle in terms of plans, tactics and follow-up. The communication devices released precise instructions in Arabic about what should be done by the fighters, moment by moment,” he told Al-Monitor.
Read more: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2015/01/syria-opposition-daraa-israel-communication-nusra.html#ixzz3OvGYqcM4
Posted by: Brad | Jan 15, 2015 3:09:29 PM | 3
I'd like to find a rebuttal to PBS's 1 hour diatribe describing Putin as the primary kleptocrat, purposely running a kleptocracy.
FYI, I'm looking for an article that takes issue with the PBS program, not comments. It's not that I don't value comments...it's just that it's hard to use them as a "source". I can't do much to stop this mad march to war with Russia, but I'd like to stop my "liberal" friends from, once again, being convinced by "liberal media" that war is the answer...and yes, this does get old.
Posted by: S Brennan | Jan 15, 2015 3:38:42 PM | 4
The terrorist strike last week on the Saudi border post facing the Iraqi province of Anbar — known to be the Islamic State’s first assault on the kingdom — could be the proverbial straw on the camel’s back, forcing Riyadh into a profound rethink of its regional strategies imbued with the rivalries involving Iran.
Tehran has effectively countered the Saudi plots in Syria and Iraq and at the moment would seem to have the upper hand. The last-ditch Saudi attempt to hurt the Iranian economy by forcing a steep decline in oil prices is not only not having the desired effect but, as President Hassan Rouhani explicitly warned yesterday, Riyadh may end up shooting at its own feet (as well as the Kuwaiti brother’s).
Posted by: okie farmer | Jan 15, 2015 3:51:39 PM | 5
PBS and NPR are both State ZioMedia supremacist orgs, daily assaulting our intelligence, using Goebbels Repeat the Big Lie meme, rounding the corners of the square into a bullseye on our children's terrible future no different than the Native Americans or the Native Hawaaians.
Further to Big Picture, the Western Pacific is going through one of the latest wet seasons in memory, and SEAsia some of the worst flooding, as the Northern Hemisphere winter plunges deep below the tropic line, in the third or fourth coldest winter in a row. The Warmists who violently disclaim volcanoes as the major source of CO2 essential to their 'Greenhouse Theory' fairy story, now demurely claim volcanic aerosols are cooling the earth more than 'normal'.
Their perfidy is just another example of the Mil.Gov.Sci.Edu Deep State Wehrmacht, self-entitled little bureaucrats, serving TPTB, helping themselves to our last life savings that will never come back again.
On to Sebastopol for The Party! Victory is ours!
Posted by: Chip Nihk | Jan 15, 2015 3:54:25 PM | 6
This AM report seems like a rehash of earlier spin about the Sothern Front and this Iranian sounding Qasim the "activist" doesn't even mention the main target of these battles, Hezbollah. Israel is certainly enjoying seeing Hezbollah routed but their leading and directing al Nusra in battle is beyond a stretch.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 15, 2015 4:05:09 PM | 7
Hezbollah ready to respond to Israel strikes on Syria: Nasrallah"
Hezbollah’s Secretary General Seyyed Hassan Nasrallah says the Lebanese resistance movement is prepared to respond to Israel’s repeated strikes on targets in Syria.
Nasrallah told Beirut-based al-Mayadeen news channel that Hezbollah is well-armed and its missiles can hit any Israeli target.
He noted that the Israeli strikes target not only territories in Syria but also the axis of resistance in the entire region.
“The repeated bombings that struck several targets in Syria are a major violation, and we consider that any strike against Syria is a strike against the whole of the resistance axis, not just against Syria,” Nasrallah said, adding, “The axis is capable of responding. This can happen any time.”
Posted by: somebody | Jan 15, 2015 4:14:13 PM | 8
over @CSIS ios a forum on how to regime change russia
CSIS @CSIS · 6 hrs6 hours ago "What are the conditions of changing political power in Russia? Very unlikely through elections" - @iponomarev: http://cs.is/1wdvQpF
so russians prefer their current govt
also it seems a MAIDAN may be forming in Armenia...
EnaLolena @EnaLolena ·13m13 minutes ago
did start Armenian Maydan?? pic.twitter.com/KP0MoDwiTL
Posted by: brian | Jan 15, 2015 4:48:36 PM | 12
RT @RT_com ·8m8 minutes ago
‘CIA killed prisoners, made it look like suicide’ – #Guantanamo guard http://on.rt.com/t4p9v3 #Gitmo pic.twitter.com/cI2z7jrIuG
Posted by: brian | Jan 15, 2015 5:06:04 PM | 13
Nasrallah is trying to boost morale amongst his followers and Iranian backers but he rarely appears in public anymore which is not a sigh of confidence. Following Iran's orders to join the Syrian conflict may be his and Hezbollah's undoing.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 15, 2015 5:27:17 PM | 15
"Can you make less noise? We are trying to sleep" What I'd like to see on the cover of #CharlieHebdo pic.twitter.com/WU70j9BL9g
Posted by: brian | Jan 15, 2015 6:06:57 PM | 16
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 15, 2015 5:27:17 PM | 15
Nasrullah doesnt take orders from Iran...and not the way you take orders from CIA
Posted by: brian | Jan 15, 2015 6:07:47 PM | 17
Obama administration pushes cybersecurity law to expand corporate-government collaboration
The legislation proposed by the Obama administration appears to be a repackaged version of the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) of 2013 and the Cyber Intelligence Sharing Act (CISA) of 2014. Though presented to the public as a necessary security measure designed to protect citizens against identity theft and defend US infrastructure against hackers, the laws further expand the ability of the US government to acquire massive quantities of personal data without seeking specific warrants.
The intelligence sharing legislation, which the Obama administration is now seeking to push through Congress once again, gives legal immunity to corporations that grant the US government direct access to their networks and databases. In exchange for real-time access to their information systems, the big tech corporations would receive protection from state laws and constitutional privacy guarantees, as well as private contracts between individuals and communications firms.
Google and Facebook will love this. This is certainly one of the paybacks of the Je sui charlie campaign. I imagine that the UK and the European Unit will follow the lead of the pied piper, as always.
Obama may not, personally, be the worst president in US history ... there's too much of nothing and too little of person there to contend for that title ... but the effects of his robotic actions have now exceeded the damage done by his patron saint - fellow b-reel actor Ronald Reagan - and have certainly done more structural damage than any other.
Posted by: jfl | Jan 15, 2015 6:13:56 PM | 18
@4, The Kremlin Stooge qv is my goto place for Putinnews. Russian/english speakers, from Russia! Serving up the straight dope w/o liberal obfuscation. Many links to a whole nother virtuality. Saker's ok, but the commentariat is a zoo.
Posted by: ruralito | Jan 15, 2015 6:28:58 PM | 19
Damn, I've predicted the Strategy of Tension's attack in Germany, Holland or Sweden and than it was Belgium.
Posted by: neretva'43 | Jan 15, 2015 6:33:18 PM | 20
okie farmer @ 5: I saw that story last week about the "militant" attempt to penetrate the Saudi border and was skeptical. No one took credit for it. And when you read the reports about it, it sounds more like a screw up rather than a foiled attempt of an ISIS invasion of The Kingdom. Like maybe rather than Saudi border guards waving the jihadis through to Iraq per usual words were exchanged that ended with guns being drawn and fired.
If you look at maps of the areas Islamic State controls in Iraq, it can penetrate Saudi Arabia whenever it wants.
Posted by: Mike Maloney | Jan 15, 2015 6:37:07 PM | 21
Mike Maloney @21 not for long..When a raiding party from Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant attacked a Saudi border post last week, it was no mere hit on a desert outpost.
The jihadists were launching an assault on the new, highest-profile effort by Saudi Arabia to insulate itself from the chaos engulfing its neighbours.
The Saudis are building a 600-mile-long “Great Wall” — a combined fence and ditch — to separate the country from Iraq to the north.http://www.businessinsider.com/saudi-arabia-is-building-a-600-mile-great-wall-to-shield-from-isis-2015-1?IR=T I can't see it working though.
Posted by: harry law | Jan 15, 2015 7:08:00 PM | 23
Thanks for the recommendation, I've got it bookmarked. There's anther rave review here. From a diametrically opposed source.
Posted by: jfl | Jan 15, 2015 7:37:52 PM | 24
This is so typical of endangered despots to look outside for threats when the real threat is already in Saudi Arabia and growing while they line up their garrison troops on the border.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 15, 2015 7:43:07 PM | 25
@15 WoW, "seen in public"? How often was that, ever? His latest youtube is one day old.
Posted by: ruralito | Jan 15, 2015 8:20:01 PM | 26
Nasrallah used to give long rhetorical speeches at outdoor Hezbollah gatherings, at the last one a few months ago he spoke for only 15 minutes while surrounded by guards. Youtube is much safer because he has incited many enemies in Lebanon with his support of Assad.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 15, 2015 9:11:34 PM | 27
@19 not quite clear...link?
Posted by: S Brennan | Jan 15, 2015 9:30:10 PM | 28
@ NMB # 1: " And what they fear most, is the probability that the European people will choose to fight and resist united."
Hopefully, if they resist the coming "Global Plantation", The West's masses will follow. I doubt it, but, there's always hope.
Thanks for the link.
Posted by: ben | Jan 15, 2015 10:29:40 PM | 29
Russia has cut off gas to the former Ukraine and is no longer going to use it as a transit country. Typical Russian move: no threats, just action.
Posted by: Demian | Jan 15, 2015 10:53:49 PM | 30
long rhetorical speeches? Do you mean to say they were "boring" because that's not what "rhetorical" means. In fact it doesn't mean anything in this context. It just makes you look like a pompous ass.
Posted by: ruralito | Jan 15, 2015 11:14:11 PM | 31
Summary from fronts by combatant Prokhorov:
In area of settlement Krimskoye (Bakhmutka, north-west of Lugansk Republic) the artillery fire liquidated all Ukrainian hardware – Ukrainians holed up in dugouts and did not attempt to rescue equipment.
The combatants did not dare to storm outpost 31 itself (near Krimskoy) for Ukrainians’ “Grads” were striking area from Lisichansk and must had spent train-load of rockets at least.
Ukrainians are lashing at district Petrovskiy (Donetsk) currently – the counter-strike is being sent to Mar`inka and Krasnogoronka (west of Donetsk). Hellish carnage is taking place near Avdeevka and in area of Opinoye (facing Donetsk airport).
Units of Ukrainian paratroopers (80 and 79, 81) are marching to Peski (the airport), where they must arrange for defense. The former defenders (units of 93rd, 1st tank, 17th tank, 3rd, 8th special force regiments) suffered immense losses.
City Gorlovka is being hit as well; shells are falling on Kondrat`yevka and Kalinovka (suburbs).
The airport is in fighting.
Commander “Motorola” : “At this moment the second and third floors (new terminal of Donetsk airport) are cleared. No one is there.”
The combatants began storming the new terminal on January 13. Same day “Motorola” confirmed his units had taken the first floor. Then Ukrainians “Cyborgs” were faced an ultimatum to leave the territory of the airport before 18:00.
The ultimatum was rejected; Ukrainian troops continued resistance and shelling adjacent territory.
Today, the combatants locked in the troops between first and fourth floors and gained control of the stairs.
Posted by: Fete | Jan 15, 2015 11:55:59 PM | 32
Just wanted to tell yall to keep breaking the ptb's ballz. Peace.
Posted by: Really | Jan 16, 2015 12:04:49 AM | 33
I doubt that you have read any of Nasrallah's speeches which are full of religious rhetoric, probably because he was trained as a preacher. They are repetitive not boring because you have to read all to get to his message which is usually interesting.
Maybe when you are better informed your comments might be more valuable and less pretentious.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 16, 2015 12:18:09 AM | 34
Ponomarev's speech was mostly composed of lies, as Trotsky would say, "the falsification of history".
Posted by: okie farmer | Jan 16, 2015 12:30:11 AM | 35
Anonymous at 11 --
Psaki is bucking for promotion, with hard hitting material like that. This just in, confirmed reports of Russian armor at Kirovskoye in the Donbas. Note the winter camoflage, I believe the markings indicate the Guards Armor Regiment "Sneg" (Snow), the stone-cold Col. Moroznii in command.
Posted by: rufus magister | Jan 16, 2015 12:54:34 AM | 36
@33 Me pretentious? You're the one using ten dollar words to make yourself sound important.
Posted by: ruralito | Jan 16, 2015 1:01:23 AM | 37
Russia has done no cutting off of gas flows through Ukraine and won't do that until the new pipelines are built in the next few years, the link you provided makes no such statement about immediate stopping of shipments.
This confusion seems to originate from the Daily Mail story about the 2009 shutdown of trans-Ukrainian gas because of theft.
I know some people want to see Russia do something dramatic in response to the sanctions but shutting down gas flows would be stupid.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 16, 2015 1:19:02 AM | 38
Charlie Hebdo and the specter of Vichy: From Laval to Hollande
The two principal figures in the Vichy Regime were Marshal Philippe Pétain, the “chief of state,” and Pierre Laval, who served first as vice president of the Council of Ministers, and later as head of government. Pétain embodied the reactionary, anti-Republican traditions of the French ruling class and military. Hailed for leading French troops at the battle of Verdun and crushing anti-war mutinies during World War I, he was an ardent anti-Semite, tied to the regime of Spain’s fascist dictator Francisco Franco.
Laval personified the corruption of the French “left,” a man whose political career easily transitioned from the Socialist Party to collaboration with the Nazis. Laval joined the 1920s “Cartel of the Left” government, before emerging in conservative governments during the Great Depression of the 1930s. He left parliament and shifted far to the right amidst an upsurge of working-class struggle, eventually positioning himself as a chief fascist collaborator. It was noted at the time that Laval’s name was spelled the same backwards and forwards—a suitable expression of his spineless opportunism.
Following the war, Laval was put on trial and shot.
The example of Laval sheds light on the reactionary maneuvers of Hollande, another unprincipled manoeuvrer trained in the aftermath of the 1968 general strike by the ex-Vichy regime official, François Mitterrand. The Socialist Party had been reconstituted in the 1970s as an electoral vehicle for Mitterrand, now promoted as a candidate of the left.
For the past 35 years, what is erroneously called the French left has undergone a long downward spiral, culminating in the current President François Hollande and his prime minister, Manuel Valls, a man known above all for his mass deportation campaign against the Roma. For his right-wing policies, Hollande has justly become the most hated president in post-war French history. Support for Hollande plunged to 12 percent in the polls last November—lower even than the current 16 percent approval rating in France for the Al Qaeda-linked Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.
While there are still many unanswered questions about the terrorist attacks on Charlie Hebdo, it is absolutely clear that the French government is determined to utilize the atrocity to shift French politics even further to the right, implementing far-reaching attacks on democratic rights while ensuring that the French ruling class has a stake in the imperialist re-division of the world.
The stench of Vichy hangs over the Elysée Palace.
The collaboration this time is with the USA. Pity all the Frenchmen and women mindlessly particpating in the rape of Marianne; or is that mental image finally too much, too Charliesque, for the French themselves?
Posted by: jfl | Jan 16, 2015 2:17:51 AM | 40
@okie farmer #5
And this sub link shows the planned "Great Wall of Fear..." -- The Chinese tried this several thousand years ago and it does not work. The construction looks suspiciously like it will marry up with similar Zionist infrastructure in Occupied Palestine.
As 'Indian Punchline' says -- with a couple of Saudi citizens in the IS attack this may end up becoming a struggle for control of the two sacred Islamic mosques.
Posted by: x | Jan 16, 2015 5:53:49 AM | 41
My friend went to meet her parents, arriving from Germany, and was stunned: the international airport "Borispol" was overflowing with young men. She was able to park her car three miles from the terminal and the airport's parking lot and adjacent areas were clogged with cars and buses. These are her impressions:
"Well, friends, what can I say? Had an epiphany today when I visited the airport "Borispol"! Now I'm glad we have been warned about the mobilization ahead of time and given a specific date - January 20th. At the airport there are scores of the departing! People of all stripes, with backpacks, bags, suitcases. The main contingent is men between 20 and 40 years old. Most - to Moscow! Others - to Turkey, Montenegro, Poland. That is, wherever is cheaper or no visas required. For this thanks to the idiots [in power]: our children are leaving their country, but at least they are not going to kill their brothers. But they will still come back! But you fascist rats, have nowhere to run! Although, I am told, all the deputies and members of the government have personal planes and reserved charters on standby. I hope not everyone will get to them in time..."
Posted by: x | Jan 16, 2015 6:14:20 AM | 42
Putin vs Soros
"The Russians may have brought into the idea not least, George Soros, who, for his part, has called upon the EU for Ukraine funding, so Ukraine can pay what it owes him.
If the Russians stand firm, Soros may have outspeculated himself [sich verspekuliert (!) —tr], unless the EU transferred further billions to Ukraine, (since in the EU point of view, the values of the West are getting maintained in Ukraine), the European heads of state and administration were to sacrifice their erstwhile so careful handling of taxpayer money to a superordinate cause."
Posted by: x | Jan 16, 2015 6:20:17 AM | 43
Here's the suicidal American consumerist view of ... Sorry Charlie. The political line as the ultimate consumer product. Marketing as the epitome of Western 'civilization'.
Reminds me of the angst that even Bilmon felt, not yet having a google email account, back in the day.
Posted by: jfl | Jan 16, 2015 6:51:02 AM | 44
Posted by: jfl | Jan 16, 2015 2:17:51 AM | 39
Interesting post. Perhaps we can fold in the meaning of the Dominique Strauss-Kahn imbroglio to make more sense of what is actually transpiring. Is Marinara Le Pig Pen as a sliding far Right goalpost foil in this? They know she will never be president or prime minister but her presence allows the establishment to say, "if we don't get tough and start cracking down, Marinara Le Pig Pen is what you'll get instead, and you don't want that, do you?" Putin and Surkov use this strategy in Russia and it works perfectly.
At the time, I asserted Kahn was purposely set up and there is no doubt in my mind the NYPD was in on it. They made a VIP do a perp walk — something unheard of and never done unless ordered from on high. So, the American wing of the WWON (World Wide Oligarch Network) in union with the French wing, collaborated to remove Kahn from the chess board in the Long Game. Could what we've witnessed transpire in the past two weeks have been part of the plan all along? There's a strong possibility, and if so, that would mean there are plans for 2018 and even 2020. Anyone have any ideas as to what will constitute those plans?
Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Jan 16, 2015 7:36:46 AM | 45
Twitter's an interesting social medium. It's pretty obvious what its intent was and is. It's soliciting The Masses to amplify propaganda memes. A quick perusal of who and what is followed most and read the most underscores this. Brilliant in its hiding-in-plain-site transparency. Pursuant to that, the infamous and vaunted Billmon blocked me from following him and from viewing his Tweets — at least viewing them directly per his account. Not that I would have followed him — I wouldn't. I follow no one.
Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Jan 16, 2015 7:53:19 AM | 46
Twitter is good for letting people know where you are and what you are up to, whether you are hanging with your homies or out dodging tear gas canisters... but it is not a medium for nuanced discussion of complex issues.
Posted by: ralphieboy | Jan 16, 2015 8:03:57 AM | 47
Twitter is good for letting people know where you are and what you are up to, whether you are hanging with your homies or out dodging tear gas canisters...
... or looting and burning down QT's, beauty salons and churches as well as shooting up rancorous politically satirical publications. Although, I thought that was the purpose of Facebook. If so, one or the other or both are superfluous.
I will concede that Twitter can be, and is, what you say, but it's also what I say it is — increasingly the peoples' go-to source for the vibe on breaking news. In this sense, it's a perfect medium for social engineering and control.
As for me, I will use it as a platform for one or two line satirical zingers. If no one reads them, no problem, it'll serve as practice, because practice makes perfect.
Here's a good one:
Sexy Beast — Not!
Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Jan 16, 2015 9:21:21 AM | 48
I did a bit of more digging and Wayoutwest maybe right after all......
"False / MISrepresented Report of Jan. 16 2015 gas supplies to Ukraine being cut off
Squealing like a stuck pig in order to get attention, the online rag NaturalNews(.com) has pumped out more drool to terrorize everybody that WW3 is 'in the pipeline' (yuk yuk) since Russia has again cut off supplies to Ukraine. So far this putridly sensational "report" remains unconfirmed and one can only surmise that the author is in some kind of crises in order to stoop so low as to publish such a slanted report without even the most basic of fact-checking first. Maybe he should try some other line of work (ay?) since his website is now partially spiraling into total irrelavance (on this topic anyway). To be fair his health related info. is on much stronger (fact-based) footing and maybe he should stick to just those topics - his strong suit."
Posted by: notlurking | Jan 16, 2015 9:50:17 AM | 50
The post you linked to seems to me to be more wishful thinking that the Russians will build the European section of the pipeline for them under their restrictive rules.
Putin was very clear that the new pipeline would end at the Turkey-Greece border and that the Europeans would have to foot the bill for the European section to connect to that distribution hub.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 16, 2015 10:32:14 AM | 51
That last comment on wiki will be taken down as soon as the wiki editors see it.
Posted by: okie farmer | Jan 16, 2015 10:34:41 AM | 52
@50 That's odd. Bloomberg neglected to mention the restrictive rules in Demian's link @29. Just Putin being obstructive again as usual. Basically it looks like Russia wants options to passage through Ukraine. Maybe because they cheat.
Posted by: dh | Jan 16, 2015 11:01:15 AM | 53
The Russian gas transit problems with Ukraine are long standing but recent events have made them acute. When this new transit system is completed Russia would be justified in stopping all gas supplies to the Fascists in Ukraine except to the Donbas and that is why they will probably continue to supply Ukraine's needs.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 16, 2015 11:19:13 AM | 54
NEW YORK, JANUARY 13 (Sputnik) – The US Navy is set to unveil a new electromagnetic weapon that uses magnetic fields to launch projectiles at high speeds, rather than using traditional chemical propellants and explosives to destroy targets.
It will be tested at sea in 2016. The technology uses high electrical currents to generate a magnetic field to launch projectiles at distances in excess of 100 nautical miles and at six times the speed of sound, researchers said.
“The Electromagnetic Railgun brings significant technological advances to our sailors and marines,” researcher Roger Ellis said in a statement. “We've achieved breakthroughs in compact power and gun design, and will test the next phase of prototype at both sea and land-based sites.”
Posted by: okie farmer | Jan 16, 2015 11:35:29 AM | 55
@ 7 wOW
Nasrallah probably doesn't want to be assassinated, hence the reason why he doesn't make public appearances. Not really a sign of weakness, more like a sign of caution.
Posted by: farflungstar | Jan 16, 2015 11:46:46 AM | 56
Sorry was a response to 15.
Posted by: farflungstar | Jan 16, 2015 11:48:50 AM | 57
Nasrallah enjoyed wide support when he led the resistance and helped end the Israeli occupation of Southern Lebanon. I supported him and Hezbollah in that effort but he soon showed his true allegiance when he supported the Syrian occupation of Lebanon.
This is why so many people from other factions in Lebanon withdrew their support of this Iranian quisling and he is afraid to speak publicly even in controlled Hezbollah territory.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 16, 2015 12:39:26 PM | 59
"last-ditch Saudi attempt to hurt the Iranian economy by forcing a steep decline in oil prices "
I'm unclear if this is what has caused the drop in oil prices. OPEC output has been steady leading up to, and during, the drop in oil prices. The increased supply of oil is coming from the US. Obviously OPEC could lower their output, but it's not like they have increased output exponentially. I'd be curious to hear how wrong my line of reasoning is.
Posted by: IhaveLittleToAdd | Jan 16, 2015 12:42:30 PM | 60
@57 I think the Saudis were surprised by the steep price drop. They built up huge cash reserves when the price was high so they can ride it out. This is the best article I've come across....
Posted by: dh | Jan 16, 2015 1:14:31 PM | 61
Posted by: dh | Jan 16, 2015 1:14:31 PM | 58
Thanks for that satire. Charlie Hebdo would be proud of it — I know I am.
I don't know about all of you, but I sure am enjoying these low gas prices. I'm drinking more these days, if only because I can afford more ripple since the majority of my budget is no longer going to funding Putin's expansionism and foolhardy panhandling in America's hinterlands (Texas and The Dakotas). I bet the Russians are enjoying those low vodka prices too — I know I would be. Here's to your livers, mates.
Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Jan 16, 2015 2:02:23 PM | 62
I think your analysis is spot on but it makes boring conservation on the web. For some people everything that happens in the world must involve some sinister cabal and if you oppose that view you must be part of that cabal.
Right now I am enjoying the $1.74 gas price here in NM and wishing I had somewhere to travel.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 16, 2015 3:44:31 PM | 63
Be interested to read Fete's sources on ...
Kiev's offensive stumbles in Donbass
Judging by the bits of information from the militia, the armed forces of Novorossia responded to attacks so powerfully that further aggravation of the situation on the part of Kiev is not expected. Thus, the planned attack on Donbass choked. Even the bloody provocation near Volnovaha did not help.
Posted by: jfl | Jan 16, 2015 3:58:48 PM | 64
NASA: 2014 Hottest Year on Record
The year 2014 was officially the hottest year on record. U.S. government scientists from NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said Friday that global temperatures were 0.69 degrees Celsius higher than the 20th century average.
Shivering here in Chiangrai for the second co-o-o-o-ld (for the tropics) winter here in a row I suppose I 'should' call NASA/NOAA liars. But I don't imagine they're lying. I do imagine that the effects of arctic warming are 'counter-intuitive', as the unintuitive like to say.
In the midst of this catastrophe in the so, so thin biosphere of our planet ... where you and I, the cyanobacteria, and everything else that lives live ... what do we read of? Oil/gas/shale/tar and war.
The scum that floats on top of us all has all of us hemmed in, caught coming and going.
What say we skim the broth?
Posted by: jfl | Jan 16, 2015 4:13:12 PM | 65
The post you link to begins with some excellent analysis of the failure of the Russian peace talks but then devolves into Iranian talking points from Qasim the Invisible aimed at portraying the Nusra Front as Running Dogs for the Israelis. Spelling ISrael, as you do, will certainly imprint this nonsense on the minds of the feeble.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 16, 2015 5:20:23 PM | 69
@62 jfl 33 celius here on the west side of malaysia... seems hot to me at the moment..
1) russia has stopped the gas flows into ukraine...
2) russia has invaded ukraine.
3) russia has annexed crimea..
make yourself out to be a bozo by choosing to state any of the above 3 points. you too could be like an msm mouthpiece.
Posted by: ..james | Jan 16, 2015 7:07:20 PM | 70
I imagine in Bangkok too. But it's been in the teens celsius and below here ... but not below freezing ... in Northern Thailand. And that's cold, here. Houses are unheated, so its as cold inside as out, 24/7. Colder, when the sun's out and it does warm up. And I'd imagine that it is a trend. If (when?) it does ever freeze here the damage done to fruit orchards will be devastating. And all the plumbing will freeze.
Posted by: jfl | Jan 16, 2015 7:58:19 PM | 71
After its stunning success in Paris, testified to by its rave revues - Je suis Charlie - the US Plans to Train 5000 Syrian Militants Despite Europe Attacks.
That's 'despite' rather than 'in celebration of ' due to the msm's continued, wildly successful, mass hypnosis.
Perhaps they should be more explicitly christened (oops, the pun) the main stream hypnotic media : the mshm.
Posted by: jfl | Jan 16, 2015 8:56:09 PM | 72
The question is whether the demonic fiends in Washington, DC will unleash a nuclear hell storm to try to maintain their psychotic grip on power.
Posted by: denk | Jan 16, 2015 11:59:20 AM | 56
Some complementary graveyard humour from the Cuban Missile Crisis era...
According to Kruschev's son, JFK told Kruschev
"We can destroy your country several times over" to which Kruschev replied
"We can only destroy your's once."
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jan 16, 2015 9:12:20 PM | 73
wonderful sense of humor,
Posted by: denk | Jan 16, 2015 9:23:44 PM | 75
Two interesting items today from Russia Insider.
A repost from Peak Prosperity by Chris Mortenson argues There is No 'Move to War'. He sets out in detail the aggressive economic and political moves against Russia. He concludes thusly:
We Not On A Road To War, We've Already Arrived
If it looks like a war, acts like a war and smells like a war, it may just be a war. The US has been waging economic, financial, trade, political and even kinetic war-by-proxy against Russia. The only question is why?
From the perspective of Russians it seems clear that neocons are driving the US ship of state, and... simply not the sort of people with whom you negotiate in good faith.... The neocons believe they have the upper hand, they are part of the most powerful country on earth, and they never negotiate preferring to dictate.
The only problem is, the US is rapidly losing allies and friends the world over and it's not nearly as powerful as it used to be, thanks to a profound failure to invest in itself (education, infrastructure, etc).
A dumb war by a dumb people doing dumb things. Great.
They also have an EXCLUSIVE: The West's Go-to MH17 Expert Is a Social Media Hack. The poster "Byzantium" details the activities of Michael Higgins, a "then unknown British amateur military analyst...."
Often the single source of support for assertions of Syrian use of chemical weapons against DC's proxies, "Higgins findings were later disputed by... arms control expert, Dr. Theodore Postol... [who] correctly pointed out that it’s impossible for Higgins to prove many of his Syrian assertions sitting in England far away from the crime scene." -- my emphasis, and again below.
After a very thorough discussion of the "evidence" and Higgins' role in its manufacture, he makes some interesting remarks about the role of Banderastani security operatives in the discussion:
The same SBU, incidentally, that has produced the majority of the photographs Eliot Higgins and his ‘crowdsourced’ (read: a handful of people with unclear expertise who agree with him that MH17 is all Russia’s fault) Internet team have relied upon for their claims. And the same SBU, that seems to maintain aggressive but poorly English speaking trolls to police the comment threads of Mr. Higgins website, BellingtheCat.
To to return again to Zappa & the Mothers' Just Another Band from LA -- "Questions, Questions, Questions, flooding into the mind of the concerned young person today. Ah, but it's a great time to be alive, ladies and gentlemen."
Later Barflies, je suis Pervomaisk.
Posted by: rufus magister | Jan 16, 2015 9:40:25 PM | 76
errata to 73 -- Chris Martenson, of Peak Prosperity
Posted by: rufus magister | Jan 16, 2015 9:42:39 PM | 77
on the subject of Mutual Assured Destruction,
*once upon a time there were two gangsters prowling the neighbourhood, there was relative peace with each checking on the other's move.
now that one is gone, the remaining thug enjoy free reign of the territory and all hell break loose*
[thats the gist of what he said, not verbaten]
im not so sure about ussr being a *gangster*,
as for ussa.......
Posted by: denk | Jan 16, 2015 10:03:37 PM | 79
in re gas to the Ukraine --
The report appears to be on the up and up; gas will stop once the connection is made thru Turkey. NewColdWar conveniently has re-posted a piece from Russia Insider paired with the Bloomberg story. From the former: upon completion "Russian gas will only be available through Turkey. The Ukrainian pipeline network will be used exclusively supply gas to Ukraine." It also discusses Gazprom's objectives in the negotiations with the EU.
Posted by: rufus magister | Jan 16, 2015 10:46:17 PM | 80
I can understand why the Euros are upset by this development. They not only have to pay for this pipeline system but will lose much of the graft and pilferage usually associated with large projects financed from outside their realm.
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jan 16, 2015 11:12:39 PM | 81
Posted by: denk | Jan 16, 2015 9:16:32 PM | 71
Re the Vet's Today article.
It's way too alarmist. FWE fails to mention the excruciatingly embarrassing levels of greed, stupidity and cowardice emblematic of Western Power Pipe Dreams.
I'm still LMAO at this premature piece of self-congratulatory dumb-fuckery:
“A Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA) is a major change in the nature of warfare brought about by the innovative application of new technologies which, combined with dramatic changes in military doctrine and operational and organizational concepts, fundamentally alters the character and conduct of military operations.”
Translation: "Scare taxpayers into letting us build 3x times more hardware than we could ever possibly need, get rich, bbq our balls, and then get ourselves obliterated by people who couldn't possibly be as stupid as we've persuaded ourselves they are."
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jan 16, 2015 11:15:04 PM | 82
Next round of negotiations between participants of a contact group from Kiev, Donetsk, Lugansk Republics, Russia and OSCE to reconcile situation in Ukraine failed to materialize. The Ukrainian delegation did not show up in Belarusian capital.
From a source close to the negotiations, “the sides did not settle on the agenda”; “probably, the situation around Donetsk airport effected unfavorably”. There are no plans for further meetings. The source predicted “long and tense pause in negotiations”.
Authorized representatives of Donetsk and Lugansk Republics Denis Pushilin and Vladislav Deynego left Belarusian capital having waited a Kiyev representative in vain.
The authorized representatives of the Republics affirmed readiness to work in the group. They also articulated that from now on authorized Kiyev representatives are the only ones expected.
Combatant of Lugansk Republic army nicknamed “Sich” (“Owl”) briefed on situation along the fronts of Lugansk Republic:
There was heavy combat for outpost 31 (Bakhmutka) this night; many brothers had fallen. We had not been kicked out. Ukrainian forces threw in the last reserves but had to retreat. Among us are about dozed and half fallen and about 50 wounded.
Currently the first line of Ukrainian forces receives reinforcement. The hardware arrives in Krimskoye, Orekhovo-Donetskiy, Schast`ye and Stanitsa-Luganskaya.
A column attempted to pass in Debal`tsevo, but we strike throughout the highway – the column lost 1 tank and 3 “Urals” (lorry track).
Ukrainian forces are demoralized – their estimated losses for last 5 days amount to 2000 wounded along the entire front line. 700 of them are permanent loss. Fourth of all hardware of the first line was ldestroyed. Most damage was inflicted by our artillery. Even now we strike through entire Ukrainian front.
Ukrainians are holed up in shelters second day in a row. During night Ukrainian forces attacked hamlet Novotoshkoka, but we held the hamlet, now fighting near it. Ukrainian forces are too weak for an offensive. The are trying to make a deal; but after almost an year of war we got it – they can not be trusted, therefore, strike them without a respite.
Posted by: Fete | Jan 17, 2015 1:21:03 AM | 85
Posted by: rufus magister | Jan 16, 2015 10:46:17 PM | 77
It seems that Russia agreed to the EU condition that pipeline providers and gas suppliers be run by different companies so as to ensure competition.
It also seems that the EU will negotiate Russian gas price as a whole.
I am not sure if that is the agreed outcome or part of negotiations. Last from Alexej Miller was that Turkish Stream would take longer than South Stream.
Last news from Bulgaria are that pipes still get delivered.
Bets are that the Euro will crack. After that economic flows will be rearranged.
Posted by: somebody | Jan 17, 2015 2:53:51 AM | 86
@81: "The[y] are trying to make a deal; but after almost an year of war we got it – they can not be trusted, therefore,..." -- well, that is progress, at least.
Posted by: x | Jan 17, 2015 3:26:49 AM | 87
Hearing in the French Senate, Dezember 17, 2014 on operation Chammal in Iraq
D. AUDITION DU GÉNÉRAL DE DIVISION (R) VINCENT DESPORTES, PROFESSEUR ASSOCIÉ À SCIENCES PO PARIS
Un mot sur Daech, d'abord.
Quel est le docteur Frankenstein qui a créé ce monstre ? Affirmons-le clairement, parce que cela a des conséquences : ce sont les Etats-Unis. Par intérêt politique à court terme, d'autres acteurs - dont certains s'affichent en amis de l'Occident - d'autres acteurs donc, par complaisance ou par volonté délibérée, ont contribué à cette construction et à son renforcement. Mais les premiers responsables sont les Etats-Unis.
Sur Daech, je suis d'accord avec M. de Montesquiou : plus cette organisation terroriste cherchera à étendre son emprise territoriale, plus elle se fragilisera et sera susceptible de subir nos frappes. Ce choix de la territorialisation signe la mort programmée de Daech - Napoléon fut défait devant Moscou ! Et c'est ainsi que Daech mourra avant Al-Qaïda. Quant à la question de rompre les flux qui en assurent le soutien, je pense, sans connaître le détail opérationnel en cause, qu'une part de la difficulté tient au fait que l'on frapperait là en territoire ami.
Short translation: The United States created this monster (ISIS). Other actors have contributed - some of them declared friends of the West, for short term political profit, out of indifference or free will, have contributed. But it is mainly the United States who are responsible.
It is difficult to stop the financing because you knock on friendly territory there.
Posted by: somebody | Jan 17, 2015 4:12:52 AM | 88
Europe’s ‘Minority Report’ Raids on Future Terrorists
PARIS — In a stunning wave of arrests, the security forces of France, Belgium, and Germany are rounding up suspected jihadis all over the map, especially those who have returned from the Syrian and Iraqi war zones.
I didn't read the whole article. The prophylactic nature of the arrests is all I need to know. Arresting 'future terrorists'. I'm sure they are not arresting the ones they have trained and have 'use' for. Just the ones they have the 'look' of terrorists.
Latest FBI Claim of Disrupted Terror Plot Deserves Much Scrutiny and Skepticism
First, they target a Muslim: not due to any evidence of intent or capability to engage in terrorism, but rather for the “radical” political views he expresses. In most cases, the Muslim targeted by the FBI is a very young (late teens, early 20s), adrift, unemployed loner who has shown no signs of mastering basic life functions, let alone carrying out a serious terror attack, and has no known involvement with actual terrorist groups.
They then find another Muslim who is highly motivated to help disrupt a “terror plot”: either because they’re being paid substantial sums of money by the FBI or because (as appears to be the case here) they are charged with some unrelated crime and are desperate to please the FBI in exchange for leniency (or both). The FBI then gives the informant a detailed attack plan, and sometimes even the money and other instruments to carry it out, and the informant then shares all of that with the target. Typically, the informant also induces, lures, cajoles, and persuades the target to agree to carry out the FBI-designed plot. In some instances where the target refuses to go along, they have their informant offer huge cash inducements to the impoverished target.
Once they finally get the target to agree, the FBI swoops in at the last minute, arrests the target, issues a press release praising themselves for disrupting a dangerous attack (which it conceived of, funded, and recruited the operatives for), and the DOJ and federal judges send their target to prison for years or even decades (where they are kept in special GITMO-like units). Subservient U.S. courts uphold the charges by applying such a broad and permissive interpretation of “entrapment” that it could almost never be successfully invoked. As AP noted last night, “defense arguments have repeatedly failed with judges, and the stings have led to many convictions.”
Read the text immediately following detailing how Judge Collen McMahon testified to FBIs unconscionable crimes in the case or James Cromitie .. and then sent him to prison for 25 years anyway!!!
Boehner Credits NSA Wiretap for Capturing Cincinnati ‘Jihadist’
Trying to boost support for NSA surveillance, House Speaker John Boehner (R – OH) claimed that an NSA wiretap was the key to capturing a 20-year-old Cincinnati man the FBI has labeled a “jihadist.”
Use the entrapment to fill the pot of gold on the other side of the revolving door.
Here Comes the Counter-Massacre
Just what that agenda is should be fairly obvious: increased surveillance power, increased police power, increased military power. And a thoroughgoing European support for continued war against ISIS and whoever else pops up in the Middle East. The reaction over the next year or two will prove just how fragile a levelheaded peace really is. Any sense that support for a withdrawal from the Middle East, rolling back the endless War on Terror, was gaining steam, evaporated when the images of the march in Paris showed who had nudged their way to the front. "Never let a crisis go to waste", an honest admission from Rahm Immanuel, was on the minds of the cozy politicians marching that day.
Who can say that the FBIs MO is not what went down in the Charlie case - inexactly, because the CIA and/or French 'security' had already trained their guys and knew what they were capable of ... as in the Boston Marathon case ... and let them go through with it ... and all for the 'greater good' ... the revolving door revolution! ... and, oh yeah, the total war in the Middle East the US/UK/EU/Israel have in mind. Keep the money flowing to the arms merchants.
Maybe they'll make a Lockheed-Martin Peace Prize when its 'over', and they're caught counting the profits.
Just like the other Peace Prize.
Posted by: jfl | Jan 17, 2015 4:17:52 AM | 89
' It seems that Russia agreed to the EU condition that pipeline providers and gas suppliers be run by different companies so as to ensure competition. '
My understanding is that Russia will build its pipeline up to the Greek border, and from there the European Unit can build whatever kind of pipeline with whatever kinds of covenants the Americans dictate.
But they better start now 'cause the Russians will be there with the gas in 2 years ... and it will be sold to whomever wants it.
Take it or leave it.
That's what Russia 'agreed' to, isn't it?
Posted by: jfl | Jan 17, 2015 4:25:15 AM | 90
@42 x.... thanks for the link.. interesting conjecture.. any thought on a specific date when putin might call in the ukee loan?
@68 jfl.. you must live in the south.. i have some musician friends in nola at the moment busking.. apparently it got so cold they went to florida somewhere to take a break from the nola chill..
Posted by: ..james | Jan 17, 2015 4:27:38 AM | 91
almost forgot.....FETE.... thanks for those updates..
Posted by: ..james | Jan 17, 2015 4:30:02 AM | 92
Posted by: jfl | Jan 17, 2015 4:25:15 AM | 86
Sure, that is the consequence of the EU conditions. But they must have known that before.
The EU would have paid for the pipelines anyway, Russia would have charged the use. Just now they pay to different companies and can hope for competitive prices.
Just interesting to see if there will be EU wide bargaining for gas, or each country will do it for themselves.
It will take a few years anyway, so political effects will be long term not short term. But Greece is ready for it.
Posted by: somebody | Jan 17, 2015 4:45:56 AM | 93
@87: "any thought on a specific date when putin might call in the ukee loan?"
I suspect it is contingent on a whole range of complex geopolitical issues. Not withstanding, if he's in for the 'kill', and the poodles don't come round to their senses, then my guess is sometime following the elections in Greece when the new likely separatist government signals 'exit' of the EU and loan defaults etc. No real logic for this, just seems to rhyme nicely with the new wave of Orthodox-centric policy.(*) He may well claim land east-of-Dnieper as payment of default at the same time. The key milestone (to pass) is SWIFT2.0 in operation B4 hand to handle/by-pass the expected DC-blowback etc. So, some BRICS coordination is also likely. It's an ace up his sleeve and no need to use it until he needs too.
(*) - I'm sure the Chinese and Russian SCO collective will be happy to forward loan to Greece on the terminal's anticipated revenue enable Greece to get out of German Bank grip. Russia is doing deals with Egypt on use of Ruble for tourist (& other) trade and I'd not rule out something similar for Greece as they adopt new currency (even the Ruble in the interim?). Then I'll wait for the announcement that the Turk-Stream/Greek mega-hub will branch south under water to Cairo. If they are cheeky enough they'll land it just south of Gaza. This is a new energy 'curtain' infrastructure ring with the EU(West) poodles on the outside and the apartheid state of Israel the meat in the sandwich. Germany is connected via North Stream and so the German-Russian-China project rolls on largely unhindered.
Posted by: x | Jan 17, 2015 5:42:29 AM | 94
@87: Looks like IMF has the decision point. Jan 29(+1) ...?
"A lot will come down to what the International Monetary Fund decides -- and it has begun indicating that it doesn't want to be in the business of simply bailing out private creditors.
It has a mission in Kiev until Jan. 29 to negotiate the current loan package, worth $17 billion, and the government hopes the visit will lead to pledges of additional money.
Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk has said Ukraine needs an additional $15 billion of financial aid without which it could default.
The extra cash would help stabilise the currency and the economy -- the main priorities ahead of debt negotiations, said Bank of America Merrill Lynch analyst Vadim Khramov, who estimates Kiev needs to pay around $17 billion in 2015 to meet its debt and gas payment obligations."
Posted by: x | Jan 17, 2015 6:41:21 AM | 95
There is no war against Russia and China. That's pure nonsense and propaganda. They're all gangsters prowling the neighborhood and right now, Vito Corleone (America) is top dog amongst the five families, but Barzini is deliberating and maneuvering for more territory and a bigger slice on his own terms. However it shakes out, it will be gangsters in charge before during and after, with the majority of you dorks rooting for your gangsters. Me, I don't want any gangsters in the neighborhood, so to me it makes no sense to support one gangster against the other because you'll just get more of the same if your gangster wins. Also, since gangsters are devils, until you figure a way to eliminate gangsterism, a tall order if we're not all on the same page, it's best to relent to the devil you know rather than the one you don't.
Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Jan 17, 2015 8:01:41 AM | 96
xxxx.... thanks x..
the imf is essentially a front for western banking system..it was an outgrowth of ww2, the camp bretton woods agreement and an acknowledgement of the us$ as de facto world currency, thanks any exchange of oil has to be done in us$. well as we can see those countries that try to brak free of the western banking cartel end up having war made on them with the double agreement of usa and gb, or the fed and boe tellin their plucrscy run citizenry they have to go make war on a counrty as they have to have a 'regime' change... the regime change i am lookin forward to is the one where the us$ regime is replaced with something less auto or plutocratic..
as to swift 2... we'll see. this is an important step towards financial emcipation, but only 1 of a few important steps that have to happen.. it won't come easy.. the same problem exists regarding how central banks are beholden to the imf and an elaboate ponzi type scheme whereby countries get classified a certain way in order to keep them chained down.. russia is tied down with the 'developing economy' status.. the whole imf is one big charade to maintain this us$ supremecy.. as a ceonsequence, any attempt to go around it will be met with some type of war.. sanctions first with threats of war,followed by war of some sort... so, to ge back to your idea of russia or the brics starting up a swift 2 is not an eay step and provokes the same type of response that i am outlining here as well. cheers.
Posted by: ..james | Jan 17, 2015 8:36:39 AM | 97
typin on an ipod is a beech..
Posted by: ..james | Jan 17, 2015 8:38:43 AM | 98
Cold N. Holefield 92
cia psyop class
*ladies and gentlemen,
here's a new strategy....
dont waste time defending usa, its a lost cause coz those lefties have their mind set that uncle sam is evil beyond redemption.
concentrate on dragging the other side thru the mud as well, make them looks like at least as bad as us or even worse.
when those hard left loonies get disenchanted with the opposition, we'd monopolise the world opionion !
i often do not go thru a long thread but search for *denk* to look for replies , its by chance that i come across ur rant .
if u've any conviction of ur pov, u should at least have the balls to address me directly ?
Posted by: denk | Jan 17, 2015 10:04:26 AM | 99
"it's best to relent to the devil you know rather than the one you don't."
Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Jan 17, 2015 8:01:41 AM | 92
Interesting analogy, but, I believe I'll wait and see. IMO, the jurys still out. With the Empire and it's sycophants in the corporate world, "Global Plantation" is their "wet dream", not so sure about the BRICS ambitions. What people do is important, not what they say.
Posted by: ben | Jan 17, 2015 10:50:53 AM | 100