Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
June 03, 2016

Open Thread 2016-20

News & views ...

Posted by b on June 3, 2016 at 18:33 UTC | Permalink

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lysias 41

obama's past was very murky to say the least.
wayne madsen thinks his mother was complicit in passing the kill list to the indon army. !

some believe indon's current prez Joko Widodo is obama's 'secret' bro, !

if true, it'd explains why indonesia seems to be tilting towards uncle sham !
life is surely stranger than fiction !

RudyM 72

suharto was an invaluable asset in 1965,
the darling of the presstitudes.

time mag
*The West's best news for years in Asia"
"Vengeance with a Smile,"
" The new army regime is "scrupulously constitutional," "based on law not on mere power," in the words of its "quietly determined" leader Suharto with his "almost innocent face." The elimination of the 3 million-member PKI by its "only possible rival," the army, and the removal from power of the "genuine folk hero" Sukarno, may virtually be considered a triumph of democracy.*

by 1998 he has become a liability.
so its up to the nyt to do the hatchet job.

Posted by: denk | Jun 5 2016 15:30 utc | 101

Seems like Merkel have lost it completly now,

Berlin's Decision to Name Moscow 'Rival' is 'Implementation of NATO Policy'

Read more:

Posted by: Ramn | Jun 5 2016 16:32 utc | 102

murkka, u'r fucking sick !

Posted by: denk | Jun 5 2016 17:10 utc | 103

GoraDiva at 58 --

Thanks for an interesting account from your family history.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jun 5 2016 20:12 utc | 104

Rahm 102 - Berlin's Decision to Name Moscow 'Rival' is 'Implementation of NATO Policy'

The PTB has the goods on Merkle to take her down in 30 seconds. The German public backlash for this sycophancy will be resounding.

Posted by: fast freddy | Jun 5 2016 21:42 utc | 105

@98 noirette

But, GW is a hoax. Just ask Penelope.


Thanks for the skinny on France. They did look exciting with the massive strikes, nothing like that ever goes down in the USA, but I couldn't figure out where it was going, what they'd do if they did bring down the government. Seems like Le Pen is the only alternative, with the 'real folks' practically outlawed as you point out. But I did not realize the extent of the disunity on the bottom-up side ... which is, I suppose, the reason the top-down right is on the rise. Like Germany during the late days of the Weimar Republic?

Posted by: jfl | Jun 6 2016 0:48 utc | 106

Haiti Sets New Presidential Elections Deadline for October

New presidential elections in Haiti will be held on October 9, interim President Jocelerme Privert announced Sunday, after voting has been postponed since October 2015 over allegations of fraud.

One year later ... the bastards occupying Haiti have the nerve of a Pinochet, a Marci, a Temer ...

Nothing in the corporate media. Only Telesur carries bulletins of the latest outrage.

Posted by: jfl | Jun 6 2016 5:32 utc | 107

Posted by: Noirette | Jun 5, 2016 10:59:07 AM | 99

(doubts about an imminent French Revolution 2.0)

Your detailed assessment of, and familiarity with, the political complexities runs much deeper than my superficial assumption about dozens of towns/ cities almost paralysed by committed strikers. And French Citizens seem to be more tolerant towards people striking for basic rights than citizens elsewhere on Earth.
Your doubts are justified but, imo, the writing is on the wall for Neo-Lib policies being meekly accepted in France - specifically.
As THE Pretty Woman famously said...
"Big mistake. Huge!"

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jun 6 2016 6:09 utc | 108

Ramadan Mubarak

Posted by: Guk Tahdar | Jun 6 2016 11:50 utc | 109

I was reading Kshama Sawant at counterpunch and came upon the Four conditions for revolution, written twenty years after May 1968, by someone name Clare Doyle. I found it a very interesting read. So close, victory at hand yet unrealized. Now forty-eight years later?

Posted by: jfl | Jun 6 2016 13:37 utc | 110

Hoarse, at 108, you are right the F are tolerant of the strikes though the media would have one believe the opposite. For ex. MSM went very far the other day, and published a poll result that claimed that 67% of respondents had a negative opinion of Martinez (head of CGT one of the stiking unions.) That no. was the non-positives, which included ‘no opinion, can’t say’ which was around 35%! (In any case, the poll question itself is silly/slanted.) Also, it is true that the F have a very healthy disrespect for authority and are not about to lose it. The strikes/actions are part of F history of course, are an outcome of the fact that F is run by a clique (Gvmt-media-Corp, under EU tutelage, the French Revolution was never really finished) in Paris. The intermediary structures are very weak or non functioning, there is no space for negotiation/bargaining/compromise.

The F won’t go down easy and may rebel in the end but imho not right now. And this is a big problem for the EU. It isn’t Greece or Portugal! (Some kind of weird non-compliant idiots, etc.) The F-German amity is a fiction.

All this is another reason why the Prez. elections are hyped and occupy huge amount of media space (just like in the US), it all serves as a distraction, like, a new prez. will change…exactly what?

Posted by: Noirette | Jun 6 2016 14:15 utc | 111

Michael Parenti anti-imperialist voice is invaluable, great lectures to watch.

His writing opened my eyes to see who's behind feudalistic, cruel Tibetan regime.

And let's remember that certain "peaceful Buddhists" have been massacring the Rohingya Muslims already for some time.

Posted by: ProPeace | Jun 6 2016 22:28 utc | 112

All this is another reason why the Prez. elections are hyped and occupy huge amount of media space (just like in the US), it all serves as a distraction, like, a new prez. will change…exactly what?
Posted by: Noirette | Jun 6, 2016 10:15:12 AM | 111

Shuffling the same old deck chairs on the same old Titanic?

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jun 7 2016 2:05 utc | 113

@102 ramn, @105 ff

Interesting article at consortium news : Europe Sleepwalks toward World War III. The (non-EU) European Council president claims the EU 'is losing touch with the population'.

The EU establishment obsessed with the idea of a federal Europe is losing touch with the population and is fueling nationalist and eurosceptic sentiment across the Continent. This is how Donald Tusk, European Council president, summarized the situation in Europe during a May 30 European People’s Party summit. According to Tusk, EU mainstream politicians create a utopia of Europe without nation states, a utopia of Europe without conflicting interests and ambitions. Tusk has added that a fully integrated Europe is impossible.

Maybe the EU will all fall down. Let's hope so. It seems bought: lock, stock, and barrel by the USA, no hope of reform. The USA's hole card seems to be the resurrection of the Intermarium (short form), (long form)

Posted by: jfl | Jun 7 2016 3:34 utc | 114

Good to hear it direct, although everyone already knows.

Al-Qaida and the Free Syrian Army (FSA) are allies fighting alongside each other for the same cause and should not be viewed differently when it comes to toppling the Assad regime, said Anas al-Abdeh, president of the U.S.-backed National Coalition of Syrian Revolution and Opposition Forces.

“They are all in the same trench,” Al-Abdeh told the London-based Arabic newspaper Al-Hayat on May 23. “We cannot differentiate between fighters whether they are Al Nusra, Ahrar Al Sham or the Free Syrian Army,” Al-Abdeh said.

Posted by: Les | Jun 7 2016 18:07 utc | 115

Posted by: dh | Jun 3, 2016 3:49:21 PM | 3

It is quite funny actually.

This is the interview

He is saying that refugees should be taken in temporarily, but that they should return to their countries in the end.

It is an attempt by FAZ not to get too boring talking about refugees, after all the Dalai Lama is a famous refugee, plus they try to find a solution acceptable to their conservative readership that does not explode the conservative party.

FAZ is usually in the "preserve German culture camp" but also represent business. Being a German cultural chauvinist is bad for business.

Posted by: somebody | Jun 7 2016 19:04 utc | 116

rg the ng, What a fantasy of lies you string together about the feelings and opinions of the American people. You remind me of those racist people who can only make themselves feel good by denigrating other races. Only with you, all Americans have to be portrayed as immoral so that you can believe that you are "better than."

I won't hold my breath waiting for your pretend outrage at injustice to attach itself to the actually guilty. You don't even care that you are failing to criticize TPTB while blaming innocent Americans whose only shortcoming is their failure to find a way to get the psychopathic oligarchs out of power. A shortcoming you yourself share.

Posted by: Penelope | Jun 7 2016 23:17 utc | 117

US Survey Reveals Public Support for Nuclear Strikes

The Sagan and Valentino survey sets forth a fictional scenario mirroring Pearl Harbor: an Iranian attack on a US aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf that killed 2,403 US sailors. Faced with this scenario, would the US public support the dropping of a nuclear weapon on an Iranian city killing 100,000 civilians?

Sagan and Valentino found that the results were "startling." In this case, 59 percent of respondents backed "using a nuclear bomb on an Iranian city."

This survery proably represents phonecalls to 620 people in the rolodexes of the WSJ editors ... but think about it ...

After some 3000 American civilians were killed, by people as yet undetermined, at the WTC the USA has now killed, what?

    100,000 Afgan civilians ?
 1,000,000 Iraqi civilians ?
      50,000 Libyan civilians ?
    200,000 Syrian civilians ?

Have my fellow Americans had enough yet? It's certain that neither Obama nor Hillary nor the TNC media have.

I've had enough war-mongering by that Great American, Rupert Murdoch, and the rest of the TNC media!

Any Iranian attack on a US aircraft carrier is about 100% more likely to follow a 'pre-emptive' US attack, nuclear or otherwise, on Iran than to precede it.

Posted by: jfl | Jun 8 2016 8:40 utc | 118

I don't normally read this site, but it looks like the US is holding back Iraq's PMF forces from storming Fallujah as seems often the case with retaking the major cities from 'ISIS'.

Posted by: Les | Jun 8 2016 20:24 utc | 119

@ Penelope | Jun 7, 2016 7:17:47 PM | 117

Welcome to the new world of neohistory to mint a pseudonym, brought to you by marketeers for PNAC and their sponsors at the Neocon Thought Collective - Council on Foreign Relations, Bilderberg Group, Trilateral Commission along with Univ. of Chicago affiliated Mont Pèlerin Society and numerous others. Neohistory such as presented has been specifically developed to negate historical memory, to obscure the historical record, to cast doubt upon information contained in the historical records and render actual historical records unaccessible to the public without having to develop a high degree of academic expertise to gain access. This is your future, guaranteed to bring on the second, the NeoDark Ages. Enjoy your journey into the future as "Fahrenheit 451" becomes the plan for your library - public AND private, an equal opportunity burning.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Jun 8 2016 21:16 utc | 120

U.N. Blacklists Saudi Arabia Coalition for Killing Children in Yemen

The United Nations yesterday released its annual blacklist for armed groups and states that violate the rights of children during conflict. One new addition to the list includes the Saudi Arabia-led coalition that is currently engaged in a Yemen war, while killing and maiming children [1].

[1] “UN Adds US-Supported Saudi Coalition to ‘List of Shame’ for Killing Children in Yemen”, Nadia Prupis, Common Dreams, June 3, 2016.

Saudi threatens to cut UN funding over blacklisting: Sources

The UN had added Riyadh and the coalition of countries supporting it in its war on Yemen to the blacklist for being responsible for 60 percent of child casualties in the Arab country last year, when it killed 510 children and injured 667 others.

Riyadh, angered by the report, demanded its “correction” and on Monday UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon agreed to the kingdom's proposal to jointly review the report.

“Pending the conclusions of the joint review, the secretary-general removes the listing of the coalition in the report’s annex,” Dujarric said.

Amnesty International decried the “blatant pandering,” which it said “damages the credibility of the UN as a whole”.

“It is unprecedented for the UN to bow to pressure to alter its own published report on children in armed conflict. It is unconscionable that this pressure was brought to bear by one of the very states listed in the report.”

“This is a stark example of why the UN needs to stand up for human rights and its own principles – otherwise it will rapidly become part of the problem rather than the solution,” said Amnesty.

The British charity group Oxfam said the world body’s decision to retract its findings was “a moral failure.”

UN blacklist U-turn bearing fruit for Saudis: 24 US gunships by month-end

Saudi Arabia’s remaining on the UN’s violators of children rights blacklist would have jeopardized the delivery of 24 US AH-6i Little Bird attack helicopters to Riyadh.

On Wednesday, American multinational corporation Boeing announced that it would start delivering the choppers, being built at a production plant in Mesa, Arizona, to Riyadh by the end of the month.

The AH-6is are capable of being armed with Hellfire missiles,rocket launchers, miniguns, and machine guns.

Boeing was given the $234-million military contract in August 2014 by the US army.

I imagine it was the US/Boeing as well as the Saudi murderers themselves who slapped the UN into shape. The US/UN/EU are a unit now. All war all the time.

Posted by: jfl | Jun 8 2016 23:54 utc | 121

US Wants to Ban Russian Import Substitution

A letter from the US Committee on the investment measures of the WTO with questions about 13 Russian documents governing the import substitution in the field of automotive industry, engineering, and information technology (at the disposal of Life.Ru) said that the proposal of the Russian government may be contrary to "the Agreement on investment measures relating to the trade regime" (TRIMs). Compliance with this document is binding for all countries participating in the World Trade Organization.

This is rich. In response to the US and its stooge EU countries 'sanctions' of Russia, the Russians are producing their own needs locally.

This ... not the economic warfare embraced by the US/stooge-EU is 'illegal', according to the evil empire.

Not only Britain but all the EU countries need to exit the EU. The EU is nothing more than the web of puppet strings the US uses to control Europe.

Posted by: jfl | Jun 9 2016 3:02 utc | 122

|@ Penelope | Jun 7, 2016 7:17:47 PM | 117

Serendipitous find and timing, The Guardian (one of your favourite sources) has produced this which you might find of interest re your comments. You don't suppose there might be a relation between the article's lead sentence and what motivates 'rg the lg' to hold such an extreme historical perspective basically stated: The present clique in power is corrupt to its core, therefore everything that was before it was corrupt to its core as well since 'its turtles all the way down' and everyone was doing 'it'. Examine that logic and see if you can disprove what was not the case being made, something that never happened as is being claimed. Beware of confounding a certain segment of the population that have preceded the present governing clique that has historically identifiable antecedents from the remote past that may have exerted influence or held power even but had been eclipsed by the modern liberal modality until the recent several decades. Understanding requires nuance and 'rg the lg' will not allow your use of that devise to reach your own conclusion; a corruption of historical understanding itself. See what grows from those seeds and see if you want those weeds in your garden.

China’s memory manipulators

The country’s rulers do not just suppress history, they recreate it to serve the present. They know that, in a communist [read Authoritarian] state, change often starts when the past is challenged

by Ian Johnson

[my insertion]

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Jun 9 2016 10:31 utc | 123

Having profited by my reading of William R. Polk's Understanding IRAQ, Understanding IRAN, I turn to The Birth of America, chapter 9\8 - “Mother England” Loses Touch. p 129 ...

Sure of their mission and driven by the urgency of getting the community organized, the governor, John Winthrop, and the “assistants” set to work. They made no pretence of election, entertained no concept of the division of powers, and certainly planned no tolerance for opposition. They acted as they thought “meete,” that is, in line with their interpretation of biblical commandments and current needs. They moved fast and comprehensively. With control of both the proprietary company and the charter, they granted land to incoming Puritans, incorporated towns, assessed taxes, and appointed officers of government. Since they always intended Massachusetts to be a self-governing theocracy as defined by their church, they made no pretence of allowing freedom of religion to others; “non-Puritans” were outsiders, living on sufferance so long as they conformed to strictly enforced codes of dress, drink, and deportment. If they did not conform, they were to be punished, driven away, mutilated, or even executed. As though to prove their growing alienation from England, the new government required all inhabitants to pledge allegiance not to the king but to Massachusetts.

... America, Massachusetts Bay Colony at any rate, was founded by takfir xtians! Virginia it seems was founded by the same 'criminal' element that founded Australia. Again, interesting reading.

Posted by: jfl | Jun 11 2016 1:36 utc | 124

Interesting news from the increasingly suicidal financial capitalists...

Bond yields fall as fears rise over global economic growth

This week the Fitch rating agency reported that negative yielding government debt globally had now risen to more than $10 trillion following a 5 percent increase in bonds with a sub-zero yield. This means that the price of the underlying bond is rising, as yields and the price move in an inverse relationship.

Initially negative yields only affected the shortest-term bonds but the phenomenon is spreading and now encompasses seven-year German Bunds and 10-year Japanese government bonds. This is impacting heavily on insurance companies and pension funds which rely heavily on positive rates on government bonds to finance their operations.

Commenting on the $10 trillion mass of negative yielding sovereign debt, Bill Gross, the former head of the world’s largest bond trading firm, tweeted: “Global yields lowest in 500 years of recorded history … This is a supernova that will explode one day.” This refers to a situation in which interest rates begin to rise, leading to a fall in the price of bonds, thereby creating massive losses for investors who have purchased them at inflated prices.

Gross is by no means the only one warning of a possible financial catastrophe. Capital Group, which manages about $1.4 trillion in funds, has warned that negative interest rates are distorting financial markets and might lead to “potentially dangerous consequences.”

The head of the Los Angeles-based bond house DoubleLine, Jeffrey Gunlach, recently described negative interest rates as “the stupidest idea I have ever heard of” and warned that the “next major event” for financial markets could be when the ECB and the Bank of Japan cancel the experiment.

Larry Fink, the head of BlackRock, one of the world’s biggest hedge funds, recently wrote in a note to investors, that there had been plenty of discussion about how low interest rates had contributed to the inflation in asset prices. But, he continued, “not nearly enough attention has been paid to the toll these low rates — and now negative rates — are taking on the ability of investors to save and plan for the future.”

In other words, out of the horse’s mouth so to speak, comes the warning that the parasitic policies which have proved so beneficial to the hedge funds and other multi-billion dollar financial speculators are undermining the central foundations on which the financial system has rested for decades.

Posted by: jfl | Jun 11 2016 20:11 utc | 125

@ jfl | Jun 11, 2016 4:11:22 PM | 125

Yep, too much cash chasing too few bonds on offer (for security) will do that fall of yield every time. You might think it was designed that way - it was, surprise, surprise.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Jun 12 2016 3:52 utc | 126

First, my apologies for the repetition. My original post at 23 had not appeared, so assuming it had been too large, I broke it up. Even had problems with some of the pieces there in the 40's.

I believe that one reason that the ICC has worked so hard to obscure the deeds of the Crimean Tatars during the Great Patriotic War is to make their putative nationalism more acceptable. Both Kiev and Ankara look to be ennabling this behavior, and Berlin is on board to give it the sheen of Euro-acceptability.

To the degree that the facts are obscured and culpability denied, it is easier to assert a sinister Russian hand behind recent actions against the the political leadership of the Tatars.

While the goal of a nation-state is not formally undertaken, there are elements within their arguments and actions that strongly suggest it is an unspoken goal.

This article arguing for the Tatars deploys several of the common memes of our collaborationists.

It begins by falsifying history. It asserts that resolution reversing the deportation "acknowledged in 1967 that the 'Nazi collaboration' charges had been fabricated."

The lie is easily refuted. As seen earlier in the thread, a good number of Tatars served the occupiers. Russian Wiki on the Crimean Tatars quotes the resolution preamble that "after the liberation in 1944 year Crimea from fascist occupation the fact of active cooperation with the German invaders of one part of the Crimea Tatars were wrongfully attributed to the entire Tatar population of Crimea..." The ability to return was subject, the decree specified, was to be " in accordance with the current legislation on employment" and the internal passport system."

Tatar activists at the time viewed it as neither a amnesty nor rehabilitation but rather "another step towards the Elimination of the Crimean Tatar people as a nation"

It then continues to falsify history. "The right of return was only established with Ukrainian independence. Crimean Tatars returned to their homes from 1989 onward." The Ukraine became independent in late 1991; some 38,000 had already returned by the 1989 Soviet census. Perestroika under Gorbachev ended the internal travel restrictions that served to restrict return.

Having then denied the reality of collaboration, it seeks to add to the Tatars preferred meme of a repetition of their earlier forced relocation. A state is needed to fight this.

The re-establishment of a Crimean Tatar homeland is a matter of simple historical justice – and for this very reason, it is doubtful any major power will give it much consideration. But lacking a secure national territory, and now lacking even a patron state, so to speak, to count as an ally, moreover lacking any kind of armed movement for its defence, the spectre of the world's short attention-span leaving them behind is what now drives the exodus.

Officially, the argument the author makes is for autonomy. I think recent events show that a number of patrons are in the offing.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jun 12 2016 21:31 utc | 127

Part of the demand for statehood rests on the Tatar's air of themselves "indigenous" to the peninsula. The link (cited at 127 above) on a repeat of the earlier deportation says “Tatars are ethnically Turkic people, indigenous to parts of Asia and Europe, such as Crimea.”

They are not. They are indigenous to Central Asia. Being invaders upon the continent, they are not indigenous to any part of Europe. The Scythians and Tauri were the original inhabitants, displaced later by Greeks, Goths, and Kievan Russians before becoming the property of the Tatars following the collapse of the Golden Horde.

The author there, incidentally, is at least somewhat realistic about the politics. Speaking of the banning of the Mejolis, “This, of course, is not fully without a cause. Several Tatar leaders have openly expressed pro-Ukraine sentiments, and some even went ahead and held rallies against the Russian annexation of Crimea.”

The author is disingenuous, however; they have done maybe a little bit more than held a few demos. Barflies might recall that the Tatars have undertaken a blockade of Crimea, in conjunction with rightist militias. Well, at least they started it together.

The politicians of the Mejilis have used the opportunity to form, with Turkish backing, a militia. They intended that this formation, the "Noman Çelebicihan" battalion, assume border control duties with the peninsula, and it has in part done so. Çelebicihan was the President of the Tatar's short-lived Crimean People's Republic, formed after and in opposition to the October Revolution, with the aid and encouragement of the Ukrainians.

They wanted to add a maritime component to what they style their "civil blockade." They were looking at Greenpeace as a model.

But they couldn't pull it off. Seems you need a navy for that, they said. I would think this due to maritime law taking such a dim view of piracy. They were hoping to get NATO naval forces on loan.

So you have a pseudo-state body, forming a militia with the backing of a foreign state, though one for now an ally of the junta in Kiev, and affecting to take on paramilitary duties of a state character. Beyond this, by destroying the transmission line towers, they have committed an act of war and imposed their policy on the state. Autonomy? Actions speak louder than words.

To be fair, they ain't the only lot of irregulars struttin' their stuff post-Maidan. But I think they're they only one to be named for a former head of an independent state.

Posted by: rufus magister | Jun 12 2016 21:37 utc | 128

I earlier suggested an emerging Berlin-Kiev-Istanbul anti-Russian axis. The Germans and Turks have a long relationship, dating back to the late Ottoman Empire. The Germans built railways and aided in military modernization, and the Ottomans fought with the Central Powers in the Great War. The "German miracle" during the Cold War came in part through the labor of Turkish gastarbeiter.

As you may be aware, the recent vote by the Bundestag to condemn the Armenian genocide has strained these ties. Ankara and Berlin are, however, avowing that "their critical alliance would not be broken."

One might think this link would be useful in enabling deepening German involvement in the Middle East. Aren't there already enough cooks spoiling that broth?

Turkey and Ukraine Are an Alliance of Misfits, united by a "rapidly deteriorating economic situation and an ever increasing danger of civil war... [and] the understanding that they won’t be able to accede to the EU any time soon.... Turkey and Ukraine have found an urgent desire to provide mutual support, in a bid to create a 'strategic alliance of misfits' to share their envy of Russia." Turkey wishes, in part, to gain access to advanced missile technology and other militarily useful systems.

Ukrainian emigre journalist Alexander Chalenko, writing in Izvestiya, thinks this relationship has the Ukraine Now Reduced Back to a Turkish Vassal.

He cites the statement of then-PM Ahmet Davutoglu during a visit to Kiev in Feb. 2016. The Crimea was the continuation of a process of "expansion and aggression" begun in Abkhazia. Russia has destroyed, he said, the territorial integrity of Georgia, the Ukraine, and Syria.

Of course, the restoration of the Ottoman Empire in one form or another is out of the question. Turkish authorities aren’t thinking about that now. The point is that Erdogan’s Turkey wants to protect and patronize the territories that once formed a part of the Ottoman Empire....

...The Ukraine is weaker than Turkey, considering both its economic and military potential. That’s why it cannot be an equal union: Ankara will lead, and the Ukraine will be led, a matrix that corresponds to the former Turkish-Ukrainian relations of suzerain and vassal, as under the Ottoman Empire.

I think "vassal" might be too strong a word, though piece captures the fundamental Master and Servant dynamic there.

So there we have it -- they've gotten the old band together again, united in their common history of genocide, back to chipping away at the boundaries of Russia. The vanguard of the EU, no?

Posted by: rufus magister | Jun 12 2016 21:40 utc | 129

Merkel ready to cave to Turkish 'blackmail' on visas: British envoy

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is open to Turkish “blackmail,” seeking visa-free travel to the EU in return for Turkey taking back refugees expelled from Europe, a report says.

Under the deal, Ankara agreed to control the flood of refugees in return for privileges like accelerated talks on accession to the EU and billions of dollars in financial aid.

For weeks, the EU and Ankara have been locked in a standoff after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan refused to rewrite sweeping anti-terrorism laws - a precondition of visa-free travel.

Turkey has defended its anti-terror laws used to prosecute academics and journalists, citing the current security problems it has in its volatile south.

You know what they say about blackmail ... the price to pay just keeps going up. Politicians always tell themselves 'It's just till I win the election. Then I'll get off the low road and get on the high.'

Well in a couple of weeks we'll know what the Brits think about the EU ... or is that what the Brits have been taught to fear about leaving the EU?

As long as there's an EU with the US running it (and the UK taking advantage of it) ... and it certainly seems you can't have the one without the other ... there will be no sane decisions taken in Europe.

Posted by: jfl | Jun 13 2016 11:48 utc | 130

ASPI think tank warns of war with China and attacks on Australia

Three weeks out from the July 2 election, the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) has published a research paper titled Agenda for Change 2016: Strategic choices for the next government. ASPI strategists openly advise that the Australian government, during the next three-year term of parliament, will face the possibility that the tensions in the South and East China Seas could draw Australia into a full-scale war with China and result in attacks on the Australian mainland.

The strategists and analysts who prepare ASPI reports are fervent defenders of the US-Australia alliance and supporters of American and Australian imperialist operations on a world scale. They are not warning of the prospect of war from the standpoint of opposition, but to insist that the Australian government commit ever greater resources to the armed forces. Even if the provocative US challenges to Chinese territorial claims in the South China Sea do not result in war in the next three years, the ASPI strategists advise the next Australian government that it has to be prepared to join Washington in a range of other military conflicts.

Will the Aussies take a nuke, or three, for Uncle Sam?

Agenda for Change 2016: Strategic choices for the next government pdf

Posted by: jfl | Jun 14 2016 1:11 utc | 131

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