Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
March 26, 2022

Some Likely Longterm Effects Of The War In Ukraine

Arnaud Bertrand @RnaudBertrand - 4:44 UTC · Mar 26, 2022

What are the biggest game-changers of the Ukraine war so far?

I see three:
1) The freezing of Russia's central bank assets
2) China and India's rapprochement
3) The cementation of the EU's vassalage to the U.S.
Small 🧵

I agree with these but would add that it is also likely to lead to 4) the long term demise of NATO and 5) a shrinking role for the U.S. in the Middle East will also shrink as a consequence of the war.

1) The freezing of Russia's (and Iran's, Venezuela's, Afghanistan's) assets will have severe consequences for the U.S. dollar. The U.S. essentially defaulted by holding back Russian assets that it had the fiduciary duty to give back. China and everyone else will move its reserves to countries or into commodities that are not under U.S. control. See the Michael Hudson's interviews here and here:

[T]hat means that other countries all of a sudden see what they thought was their flight to security, what they thought was their most secure savings, their holdings in U.S. banks, US treasury bill, all of a sudden, is holding them hostage and is a high risk. Even the Financial Times of London has been writing about this, saying, how can the United States that was getting a free ride off the dollar standard for the last 50 years, ever since 1971, when foreign countries held dollars instead of gold and basically holding dollars means you buy U.S. Treasury bonds to finance the US budget deficit and the balance of payments deficit. How can the United States kill the goose that’s giving it the free ride? Well, the answer is that other countries can only move into gold and there’s an alternative to the dollar because that’s something that all the countries of the world have agreed upon is an asset, not a liability. If you hold any foreign currency, that currency is a liability of a foreign country, and if you hold gold, it’s a pure asset.

2) China's and India's rapprochement has been coming for some time. The border squabble over a few thousand square meters of mountain rocks in recent years never made much sense. The Ukraine crisis has shown that India and China have common interests. Some solution for the border will be worked out and full cooperation will return. This means the end for the Quad, the U.S. made anti-China coalition of Australia, India, Japan and the U.S. itself.

3) The cementation of the EU's vassalage to the U.S. will only be temporarily. European companies have their own interests and they will press their politicians into more realist positions:

It is a long haul for Europe to dispense with Russian gas. Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said yesterday: “There are gas shortages, and that is why we need to talk to Russians. Europe will move towards reducing its dependence on the Russian gas, but can this happen in the coming years? This is very difficult.”

“Europe consumes 500 billion cubic meters of gas, while America and Qatar can offer 15 billion, up to the last molecule… That is why German and Austrian politicians told me: “We cannot just destroy ourselves. If we impose sanctions on Russia in the oil and gas domain, we will destroy ourselves. It’s like shooting yourself in the foot before rushing into a fight.” This is how certain rational people in the West see it today.”

4) As for NATO: As soon as Russia has finished its operation in the Ukraine it will become clear that it has absolutely no interest in attacking any NATO country. The coming period of high inflation will lead to shrinking defense budgets. A NATO that makes promises, like it did to Ukraine, but has neither will nor means to fulfill them has lost its way and serves no serious purpose. It will wither away.

5) In the Middle East the U.S. has proven to be an unreliably ally. The Saudis and others need someone else to protect their security:

The Russian intervention in the Ukraine took Gulf governments by surprise and caused a great deal of anxiety. Here were governments that have tried in recent years to balance their primary loyalty to the U.S. with a new attempt to improve relations with China and Russia.

While Putin intervened in Syria against the wishes of Gulf regimes, which were trying to unseat the Syrian ruler, Bashar al-Asad, the Gulf acknowledged the resolve and determination of the Russian government. Brutality in Russian or American intervention in Syria is of no concern to Gulf despots. They value first and foremost the willingness of the Putin administration to stand by his ally in Damascus in comparison to what they see as a lack of resolve on the part of the U.S. towards its clients in the Gulf.

The Gulf regimes feel Putin is more loyal than the U.S., and the mischievous behavior of UAE and Saudi Arabia in the last few weeks is an expression of their frustration with U.S. role in the region. (Riyadh, for instance, is in talks with China to trade some of its oil in yuan, which would deal a blow to the U.S. dollar that is used in 80 percent of world oil sales. Until now, the Saudis have exclusively used the dollar. And Emirati and Saudi leaders have refused to take Biden’s phone calls.)

China and Russia will likely cooperate to build some new security architecture in the Middle East.

As all the above plays out it may well turn out that the U.S. policy of overextending and unbalancing Russia did not work but has created a backlash that has severely damaged its own strategic position.

Posted by b on March 26, 2022 at 16:52 UTC | Permalink

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Zelensky to receive an Academy Award for his role as the feisty president of a country invaded by baby-eating monsters from outer space.

The Ukie people nominated for a Darwin award as best ensemble cast in a supporting role.

Scholz nominated for best conniving stooge, Macron for most irrelevant knave.

Posted by: Robert Macaire | Mar 27 2022 2:24 utc | 201

@197 Nothing for Boris? How about best Oliver Hardy imitation?

Posted by: dh | Mar 27 2022 2:27 utc | 202

One simply has to admire—and pity—Putin for having to take so many calls from a nobody like Micron…

Posted by: malenkov | Mar 27 2022 2:38 utc | 203

Defense Politics Asia has a video up chronicling the first 30 days of the Ukraine operation, 52 minutes long, on his Youtube channel:

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Mar 27 2022 2:56 utc | 204

Let's really take an honest look at what has actually been happening in the U.S. (and in Europe). The U.S. destroyed its own industrial depth, thus destroying indispensable interdependent components of its entire productional system. You cannot make a complete automobile if you don't make tires. This has been going since roughly 1971, but it really ramped up in the 1980s during the time of Bill Clinton. Then there came all the utterly fruitless yet economically ruinous wars. Then came the 'sanctions' and the many other self-discrediting acts of bad faith.

All these things really make me wonder: Is 'The Project for the New American Century' actually a project for a new century of American ruination?

Posted by: blues | Mar 27 2022 2:59 utc | 205

From Tass... Re the blowing up dams plot...

Neo-Nazis seek to blow up dam northwest of Odessa - Russian Defense Ministry
According to chief of Russia’s National Defense Management Center Mikhail Mizintsev, an attempt of an official of Ukraine’s State Emergency Service to avert that insane decision was suppressed rudely and brutally, including up to threats of execution by firing squad

MOSCOW, March 26. /TASS/. Mines have been planted around the Khadjibey dam located in the northwest of the Ukrainian city of Odessa, and neo-Nazis are planning to blow it up, Colonel General Mikhail Mizintsev, chief of Russia’s National Defense Management Center, said on Saturday.

"By order of the Odessa governor, mines have been installed into the Khadjibey dam, which the neo-Nazis plan to blow up. Once their criminal actions are put into practice, densely populated areas, along with local inhabitants, will be exposed to flooding," Mizintsev said.

According to the colonel general, an attempt of an official of Ukraine’s State Emergency Service to avert that insane decision was suppressed rudely and brutally, including up to threats of execution by firing squad.

"Thus, the Kiev authorities widely demonstrate their complete indifference to their own people and the readiness to sacrifice innocent people in order to implement the geopolitical goals of their Western handlers," Mizintsev stressed.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Mar 27 2022 3:04 utc | 206

dh | Mar 27 2022 2:23 utc | 195

Russia will not be capitulating so o off ramp. US/UK seem to prefer having their backs to a cliff rather than an off ramp. And there is no soft landing at the bottom of the cliff.
A lot of US dollars will be coming home to roost in the not too distant future. Brits have no fish to go with their chips and the french are brawling over cooking oil and 10% of Italian farms are going under the bankruptcy hammer. End of month one.
The evil ruskies are in no hurry (apart from US hypersonics). They will give Ukraine a thorough rebuild as the US west disintegrates.
Some turbulence ahead through this changing of a historical era. For the US west, as a dentist once told me - You may feel some discomfort.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Mar 27 2022 3:08 utc | 207

Clinton was governor of Arkansas in the 80's. that would be one Ronald Reagan.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Mar 27 2022 3:11 utc | 208

Methinks the Russians don’t want this fight to end too quickly.
1) They need time to starve out the Azovs and will only speed things up if the local population is threatened.
2) The “pay in Rouble or Gold” needs to time take effect; pain needs to be felt in EU capitals before the brains engage. There is probably a thick layer of disbelief that needs to be washed away before their plight become apparent
3) The RU/CN axis needs a bit more time to get their alternate payment system/s sorted. Also the various banking institutions need some time to get themselves aligned to UnionPay/Mir/Other schemes.
4) CN needs time to get IN aligned more fully into the Eurasian economic schemes; that’ll kill the Quad completely; expect to see foaming at the mouth from the US on this point
5) The Middle East States are also seeing new horizons and possibilities and trying to figure out how to join the new reality without getting themselves bombed.
6) The fuel shortages in UA mean the farmers don’t have fuel to sow the next crop; has to be done in the next 2-3 weeks; this makes additional pressure on the EU/Turkey/Egypt/Others

Russian is not in a hurry

Posted by: HossCara | Mar 27 2022 3:15 utc | 209

I’m not a military buff, particularly tech. So I did a cursory search on US hypersonic development. As far as I can tell, there’s one pro next that might get final approval and start production in 2022. Everything else sounds like vaporware with the earliest earliest realistic roll out being in 2025. But the congressional fact sheet has a lot of “development” and “prototype” caveats. The hypersonic defense system sounds like a boondoggle of epic proportions even for the DoD.

If we correct for US military procurement wishful thinking when asking for more money, I feel like 2030 for any significant hypersonic tech from the US. In fact, I noticed a lot of complaining about how the way the US could do it would be glide from an ICBM, but those will look like a nuke coming. My gut tells me the US is stumped and there may never (realistically) be a US answer. Seems like there were more failed tests in 2021 than successful ones.

Posted by: Lex | Mar 27 2022 3:23 utc | 210

Bidet:”You American troops will go to Ukraine and see for yourself.”

White House:”He didn’t really mean that.”

Bidet:”Putin can’t remain in power.”

White House:”He didn’t really mean that.”

Bidet:”I’m president.”

White House:”He didn’t really…”

Posted by: Biswapriya Purkayast | Mar 27 2022 3:30 utc | 211

=> pretzelattack | Mar 27 2022 3:11 utc | 204

So I was off by ten years. Bill Clinton signed the NAFTA treaty 'implementation law' on December 8, 1993, but the treaty process was started by Reagan in the 1980s. (IF I recall correctly...)

Posted by: blues | Mar 27 2022 3:30 utc | 212

The collapse of USA military credibility seems like a broad-ranging bump in the stream of long-term effects. There's a very important truth coming to light in the course of the physical demonstrations we see of military competence (from the Russians, that is). To wit: It is said that Russian arms contractors make arms, while USA arms contractors make profits. We'll see much more of this truth in continuing performances, I'm afraid.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | Mar 27 2022 3:40 utc | 213

Tomorrow, President Biden will receive the Oscar for best interpretation of an enlisted man-documentary short.

Posted by: Circe | Mar 27 2022 3:45 utc | 214

re 201 Blues,

I just don't understand how Western Elites think; are they utterly corrupt, reckless, incompetent, evil and suicidality self-destructive all at once? They spend 30yrs building a global supply chain network (imposing terrible costs upon the working classes of the global supply nations). Then, basically overnight, they trash all of the global supply chains for food and energy with no alternatives prepared or even on the drawing board, guaranteeing that their own populations and financial markets will see crushing economic loses (according to Bloomberg, those making less than $300K per year, 98% of the US population will see a major drop in the quality of the standard of living) for at least 2-4yrs (possibly much longer) while new domestic industries are established or retooled for domestic production.

This seems seems more like a pump and dump type of operation that the US did against the Asian tiger economies in the late 1990s. inflate the economies with excessive foreign investment, then organize a sell-off just before the peak, torch the economy on the way out, then buy up the ruins for pennies on the dollar 1-2yrs later and repeat the process.

it's a completely ruthless way to operate, but it does makes a type of "sense" to do that to places that you don't live in. But it is utterly absurd to to that to your own nation. It's like torching every other house on the block your house sits in, so you can buy up the land cheap for future investment. Sure you can do it, but what if the fire gets out of hand and your house burns down too, what if your neighbours realize what your doing and lynch you in your front yard. This is exactly what the old Russian Oligarchs tried to do in Russia back in the 90s and it eventually gave us Putin who crushed the old Oligarchs who didn't fall into line. I can only imagine how ruthless the American people would be in pursuing their own Oligarchs if they realized what they were doing.

Posted by: Kadath | Mar 27 2022 3:54 utc | 215

Posted by: Lex | Mar 27 2022 3:23 utc | 206

I think Martyanov agrees with you. He's said many times that the upcoming "Dark Eagle" is not all it's cracked up to be and won't be coming as soon as the US says. Me, I have no idea.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Mar 27 2022 4:05 utc | 216

Map of hostilities and the situation on the fronts on the evening of March 26

Good news friends! Finally hit New York today! The truth is that in Donetsk, which until recently was the village of Novgorod. Today they reported about strong explosions and a glow on the outskirts of this settlement.

It should be noted that explosions were heard today in all parts of Ukraine. The arrivals were particularly intense. Our Ministry of Defense has been destroying stocks of fuel and lubricants on the territory of Ukraine for many days now, dozens of storage facilities have accurately minus over the past day. Particularly loud exploded and burned strongly in Lvov, Rivne region, Zhytomyr, Lutsk, Kharkov, Kyiv and many other places.

The hottest fronts are still in Izyum and Mariupol, although there is noticeable progress. In Mariupol, Azov residents were squeezed into the industrial sector. The city is being cleaned up at a rapid pace, building by building, block by block. The main news from there is all the new details about the horrors and tragedy of the situation in which the locals found themselves.

Interesting details were received about Izyum, Boris Rozhin reports: the situation there began to change dramatically in favor of the RF Armed Forces. The southern part of the city is still being cleaned, but the progress is quite vigorous. But most importantly, this is the situation south of Izyum. We finally took Kamenka and advanced along the highway in the direction of Slavyansk. Dry Kamenka was taken, the Ukrainian Armed Forces tried to carry out a counterattack at night with the support of tanks, but were partially dispersed, partially destroyed. And this afternoon, our UAVs discovered a large concentration of forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the village of Barvenkovo, and an Iskander flew there in a very short time, hitting the very center of the enemy’s position.

In addition, our artillery worked superbly at night, destroying the enemy's Grad battery. In general, for two days the Armed Forces of Ukraine had very heavy losses. In Kamenka, they were perfectly fried with TOS, the artillery worked perfectly in counter-battery combat, and several arrivals of Iskanders added a cherry to the cake.

Posted by: Kim | Mar 27 2022 4:08 utc | 217

Madeline Albright: "What’s the point of having this superb military . . .if we can’t use it?"

Posted by: Don Bacon | Mar 27 2022 4:10 utc | 218

@ Kim 213
the Armed Forces of Ukraine had very heavy losses
Few soldiers left, so now the US will assist civilians to evacuate
. . .from State
$100 Million in New U.S. Civilian Security Assistance for Ukraine

The United States intends to provide an additional $100 million in civilian security assistance to enhance the capacity of the Ukrainian Ministry of Internal Affairs to provide essential border security, sustain civil law enforcement functions, and safeguard critical governmental infrastructure in the face of President Putin’s premeditated, unprovoked, and unjustified attack.
The increased funding will continue a steady flow of personal protection equipment, field gear, tactical equipment, medical supplies, armored vehicles, and communication equipment for the Ukrainian State Border Guard Service and the National Police of Ukraine. With the U.S. government’s vital assistance, Ukrainian law enforcement officers are playing a key role in rescuing victims of the Russian government’s brutal assault, leading and protecting convoys of those displaced by attacks, and providing security to civilian areas torn apart by ruthless and devastating bombing. . .here

The US support for what's left of Ukraine is ironclad and unwavering.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Mar 27 2022 4:24 utc | 219

@204; Ronald Reagan was Gov. of California.

Posted by: vetinLA | Mar 27 2022 4:31 utc | 220

Here is a USN vessel we won't see in the Black Sea.

Australian shipbuilder, Austal, builder of USN Independence Class Littoral Combat Ship flops. The class is being decommissioned early.

Meanwhile their plans for building the class in the Philippines also flops.[AFR]
"Austal shares slumped after the Philippines Navy opted against handing the ship maker a contract to build offshore patrol vessels (OPVs), deepening investors’ concerns about its order book.After extended negotiations, the Perth-based company on Wednesday revealed the Philippines Navy had opted to sole-source foreign-built OPVs rather than purchase its vessels facilitated through a memorandum of understanding with the Commonwealth of Australia.
In late trade, Austal shares were down 9 per cent at $1.82.
“This is a disappointing outcome,” Argonaut analyst Ian Christie said, adding it was unexpected given the vessels would have been built in the Philippines with a local workforce".

Management is being investigated.

Posted by: Paul | Mar 27 2022 4:34 utc | 221

. . .late in the evening, time for trivia...
George Gipp (February 18, 1895 – December 14, 1920), nicknamed "The Gipper", was a college football player at the University of Notre Dame under head coach Knute Rockne. Gipp was selected as Notre Dame's first Walter Camp All-American, and played several positions, particularly halfback, quarterback, and punter. Gipp died at age 25 of a streptococcal throat infection and pneumonia, three weeks after a victory over Northwestern in his senior season, and was the subject of Rockne's "Win just one for the Gipper" speech. In the 1940 film Knute Rockne, All American, the Gipper was portrayed by Ronald Reagan. --wikipedia

Posted by: Don Bacon | Mar 27 2022 4:37 utc | 222

In Warsaw, Biden was unfettered in his threats and insults to President Putin.

Here's an uninhibited response:

Posted by: Circe | Mar 27 2022 4:39 utc | 223

After Europe destroys its economies, Russia can retreat to the newly minted countries in Eastern Ukraine. Russia can then tell the Europeans, have at it, rebuild the Ukraine. You the West were so keen on galvanizing your peoples to aid the people there. Zelinsky awaits your aid. Of course the bankrupted West will not have the resources to rebuild the Ukraine. Any monies they send will be stolen by returning Oligarchs. And here is my prediction. Ukrainian Nazis will move into Western Europe--too lethal to challenge the Russians a second time. The Nazis will turn some European capitals and cities into war zones fighting migrant populations from ME and North Africa.

Posted by: Erelis | Mar 27 2022 4:41 utc | 224

Lex | Mar 27 2022 3:23 utc | 206

US has a number of different systems in development. Scramjet or rocket powered hypersonic cruise missiles like what Russia has are a log way off for the US.

Ground launched boost glide had three successful tests and production has been commenced. The booster is not a issue, production glide bodies will require testing and perhaps tweaking of
production line. They will most likely start testing production missiles this year and deployment next year. Boost glide is perhaps a very basic model compared to what Russia has more for medium to long range as I understand them. Was Putin referring to these or cruise missiles similar to what Russia has?
When I look at the yank nutters I think when they get hold of any sort of hypersonic missile they will gather enough courage for a strike on Russia.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Mar 27 2022 4:41 utc | 225

@ 217
LCS = Little Crappy Ships had many faults. Its hulls were built to commercial (not naval) specs. The LCS had mechanical problems, a too-small crew with members wearing different hats (literally) for the assignment they had that day. The "littoral combat" in this case meant zero contact with the Marine Corps. Say what? It was intended that the ships would be augmented by various modules, e.g. anti-mine. It never worked out.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Mar 27 2022 4:53 utc | 226

@204; Ronald Reagan was Gov. of California.

in the 60's. he was president in the 80's. Clinton was president in the 90's.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Mar 27 2022 4:54 utc | 227

imo he peaked with Death Valley Days, going around giving his canned corporate speech.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Mar 27 2022 5:02 utc | 228

@ 220
Poland has taken a lot of emigrants, probably including Nazis. Poland is at odds with the EU over governance issues, even though Poland is a huge net beneficiary of EU funds (with Germany at the opposite end of financing, huge payments but few offset beneficiaries. The loss of UK net payments is a big loss.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Mar 27 2022 5:03 utc | 229

I see the headline in RIA tonight is Ukrainian Armed Forces shelled Donetsk and Yasinovataya

I have to ask why Russia does not silence the UAF artillery and Grads? Surely Russia has the ability to do so using its own heavy artillery and air power. My understanding is that Russia has refrained from using its full forces, perhaps hoping that the UAF will finally surrender when it is out of food, fuel, and ammunition. But given that one of the primary rationales for prosecuting this war was to end 8 years of slaughter of the people of Donbass, why allow the UAF to continue? Doesn't this kind of action justify a full retaliatory response?

Posted by: Perimetr | Mar 27 2022 5:04 utc | 230

Posted by: malenkov | Mar 27 2022 2:04 utc | 186

And previously oldhippie

Thanks for your comments.

In a previous life I did a little work in this field. It annoys me when I have paid for books which have not even been proofread.

My own personal hate is “slither” for “sliver”. Even in deeds drafted by supposedly educated lawyers one encounters references to “slithers of land bounded on the north by a chain link fence...”

Posted by: Cortes | Mar 27 2022 5:04 utc | 231

@ Richard Steven Hack | Mar 27 2022 1:47 utc | 181 / 202

thanks for that info.. here is the song referenced in your post @ 181 - scows.. Scows full of mullet

@ Perimetr | Mar 27 2022 5:04 utc | 226

i think they are working on this, but obviously not fast enough for everyone..

Posted by: james | Mar 27 2022 5:11 utc | 232

I never see India supporting USK motions on Xinjiang or Taiwan. Maybe it takes more USK sanctions or their increased support for Taiwan?

Posted by: Antonym | Mar 27 2022 1:51 utc | 182

Mate we've crossed swords a few times before but i think we can agree we're on the same side on this Ukraine shitshow. But....

I don't think China will be asking for any concessions from India re china's internal matters like xinjiang or Taiwan, it's none of indias business. That said, may be its just a good opportunity to get rid of some problems that neither country needs on those mountains, too damn cold.

Whilst India has a populist regime its business elites are firmly stockholmed in London and takes orders from the same. It's caste system means any democracy is just sham as far as ordinary lives are concerned. All the mildly successful Indians in the right caste will give their first born to go live under the flightpath of Heathrow.

When is India going to play its own hand? Its seems its always looking for others to lead, the shadows of its colonial past runs deep. You talked about China acts like a big brother, but your view is exactly why India is looked upon like a little brother on the kids table.

India has its own housecleaning to do.

Should China give India everything it demands then? Would that make this little brother happy? India has the population and the smarts to eventually be on par or even surpass China. Dispense with the victims logic, grow the fk up.

Posted by: A.L. | Mar 27 2022 5:33 utc | 233

Scott Ritter interview

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Mar 27 2022 5:38 utc | 234

. . .from thehill
NATO official says alliance would be forced to take action if Russia uses chemical, nuclear weapons

NATO Deputy-General Secretary Mircea Geoana said in an interview with The Associated Press that the group would respond if Russia used chemical or nuclear weapons in its war against Ukraine.
“NATO is a defensive alliance, but also it’s a nuclear alliance,” said Geoana, who is also the former Romanian foreign minister and ambassador to the United States. “If they will be using chemical weapons or other kinds of higher-end systems against Ukraine, this will be changing fundamentally the nature of the war that Mr. Putin has waged against Ukraine."
“I can guarantee that NATO is ready to respond proportionately,” Geoana added.
Russia has become more desperate as the war has gone on for more than a month, with Russian forces previously believing they would take over Ukraine within days. . .here

OMG, the war has gone on for more than a month.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Mar 27 2022 5:47 utc | 235

Perimetr | Mar 27 2022 5:04 utc | 226

Your question has been explained and answered more than enough times by Putin and Russia MoD.
Russia MoD has now said it will concentrate on the grouping facing donbass. Their supplies have been cut, there are no reinforcements and they have now been on the front lines for four weeks straight. They are about to get Azoved.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Mar 27 2022 5:48 utc | 236

Kadath @ 211

To answer your question. Yes.

Posted by: oldhippie | Mar 27 2022 5:57 utc | 237

I see a lot of people, including, unfortunately, even folks here at MoA. Absolutely not true and I believe that strongly enough to dedicate a whole series to the topic.

Russia is NOT losing the information war.

Posted by: Ian Kummer | Mar 27 2022 6:07 utc | 238

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Mar 27 2022 5:38 utc | 230

Thanks for the link. Everyone should listen to Ritter's interviews, especially the longer ones. Having seen the longer ones, they get a bit repetitive after a while but one never knows when something new will be asked or stated. Always worth listening. In my view he has the best analysis of Russia intentions of anyone.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Mar 27 2022 6:12 utc | 239

"Governments who complain will find right wing nationalists destabilizing their politics.."

@Posted by: ptb | Mar 26 2022 20:40 utc | 94

Already the case in Poland. It's gone ethnonationlist or ultranationalist in a huge way. This rightwing populist (rightwing populism is pretty much fascism) President has unleashed the hounds of war. These guys want an "ethnically pure Polish state" with "pure blood." Polish blood and soil nationalists. They're not Nazis specifically though. But National Socialism can unfold in any land.

Posted by: Robert Lindsay | Mar 27 2022 6:20 utc | 240

Statistically 75% of the perpetrators of anti-Asian hate crimes (both before and since the pandemic) are white.

Historically and presently Anti-Asian Racism Never Stopped Being an Outgrowth of U.S. Imperialism.

Posted by: Vintage Red | Mar 27 2022 2:12 utc | 190

Yes but most of those hate crimes are verbal attacks. Whites do commit a lot of verbal attacks, technically hate crimes I guess, against Asians. But almost all of these assaults, including the very bad ones, are by Blacks. A few are by Hispanics. Only 10% are by Whites.

Posted by: Robert Lindsay | Mar 27 2022 6:22 utc | 241

@ 184

"India's Modi declined to meet with China FM Wang Yi on his recent SE Asia visit."

Will the Chinese PM meet with the India FM? No, rank meets rank in diplomacy.

@ A.L. | 229

India stays out of comments on Xinjiang and Taiwan, China stays out of comments on Kashmir, deal? China is arming Pakistan by the way: does India arm Taiwan? No.

Posted by: Antonym | Mar 27 2022 6:27 utc | 242

From the MoD Russia Telegram channel... Note the report of calling Russian reserves. Russia is not calling up reserves. Furthermore, in the Russia briefing earlier referred to by others, they note that Ukraine does not have any organized military reserves available. So the Ukrainian army is basically reduced to what's remaining in the field.

Briefing by Russian Defence Ministry

Units of the Russian Armed Forces are fighting for the capture of Novomikhailovka.

During the day's fighting, more than 30 servicemen of the Ukrainian Armed Forces of 54th Mechanised Brigade, 6 armoured vehicles and 2 field artillery mounts of 46th Separate Assault Battalion were destroyed.

The offensive continues against the well-fortified concrete fortifications in Novoselovka and Novobakhmutovka settlements.

The defending units of the 25th Ukrainian Separate Airborne Brigade are suffering significant losses. Most of the fortifications have already been destroyed.

During the day, up to 50 Ukrainian servicemen were destroyed, 7 long-term firing points and 5 armoured targets in protected shelters were suppressed.

Operational-tactical and army aviation hit 91 military assets of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. Among them: 2 command posts, 11 field depots with arms and ammunition, 2 electronic warfare stations, as well as 20 strongholds of Ukrainian Armed Forces units and 52 areas of military equipment concentration.

Russian air defence means shot down Ukrainian Mi-24 helicopter over Staraya Basan'. During the day, 4 Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles were destroyed over Balakleya, Kiev, Chernigov. During the day, four Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles were destroyed over Balakleya, Kiev, Chernigov. 1 Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicle approaching Sevastopol in the airspace over the Black Sea was also destroyed.

In total, 271 unmanned aerial vehicles, 1,627 tanks and other armored combat vehicles, 167 multiple launch rocket systems, 669 field artillery and mortars, as well as 1,474 units of special military vehicles of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were destroyed during the operation.

In recent days, many Russian male citizens have received fake phone calls in which an answer-back unit informs them of a call to the military commissariat.

I want to emphasize, all such fake calls are made from the territory of Ukraine, are completely untrue and are a provocation by the Ukrainian special services.

I officially declare that the Russian Defence Ministry does not planning to call any citizens in reserve to military commissariats.

#MoD #Russia #Ukraine #Briefing

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Mar 27 2022 6:31 utc | 243

Listening to Mercouris' video today. He picks up on the fact that the Russian briefing has some weird numbers, such as destroying 180 AD systems out of 148, or whatever. He notes that this is either a machine translation error OR it's possible that in fact Ukraine had more of these than were officially recorded as existing when the war started. I suppose either is possible. I picked up on those weird numbers also, and this is an explanation I didn't think of.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Mar 27 2022 6:36 utc | 244

Lex | Mar 27 2022 3:23 utc | 206

"The hypersonic defense system sounds like a boondoggle of epic proportions even for the DoD."

I suspect the Pentagon's culture of weapons procurement as primarily a monumental corporate welfare trough is so deeply engrained that even this context won't make a dent in it.

Just one of the many elements of US system pathology that can't be dislodged short of some kind of "revolution" which isn't going to happen.

Posted by: Flying Dutchman | Mar 27 2022 6:36 utc | 245

@ Peter AU1 | Mar 27 2022 5:38 utc | 230 with the Scott Ritter link...thanks

I agree that he is on top of this geo-political situation and explains it very well.

I was struck by the early part of the interview where he described my understanding of the Bretton Woods fallout with Russia creating the Iron Curtain. I do fault him for not continuing that context with the current situation but understand his focus is mostly military.

I agree with his assessment that the Russian action in Ukraine will be short lived and with deliberate outcome.......since I think that the Ukraine event is just part of a bigger war, I think that the resolution of Ukraine will become an afterthought once all the economic wreckage from the birth of an alternative Reserve Currency for our world.

I would hope that humanity wakes up enough to see the long term cost of ongoing war for profit and ends the God of Mammon cult's control on the social system of the West. That vision should clear as the public focused system of finance evolves and their example of service to humanity grows.....I hope to live long enough to see it...

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 27 2022 6:37 utc | 246

@ScottinDallas #45
You confuse FIRE activity with real production.
The tax thing is also utterly disproven.

Posted by: c1ue | Mar 27 2022 6:39 utc | 247

Posted by: blues | Mar 27 2022 3:30 utc | 208>

Reagan and Mulroney signed the FTA - 1988? - and NAFTA followed. I remember my father railing on about the medium and long term harm it would do to both Canadian manufacturing and Canadian sovereignty. Like so many other things, time has proven him correct.

Posted by: Macmuir | Mar 27 2022 6:39 utc | 248

@Circe #101
Re: liquid container tanks left standing
Not all tanks in a storage facility are in use. Some are likely empty, some are filled with non-valuable stuff like water, some might be filled with something toxic and not very war-relevant.

Posted by: c1ue | Mar 27 2022 6:44 utc | 249

@K #108
In theory, if you really can know what everyone can produce and what everyone needs - you can remove money altogether.
The biggest problem is that this is a ginormous task - and building bureaucracies to address that has yet to be successful long term.
Under Marxism-Leninism - the Soviet government removed the role of money in most major things but the long term impact was to change the medium of value from money to bureaucratic influence <-- this is what Orwell referenced when talking about "some animals are more equal than others".

Posted by: c1ue | Mar 27 2022 6:47 utc | 250

These are mostly numbers disconnected from reality. How is Europe going to get off US vassalage ? Take one country’s one product brand, Mercedes Benz of Germany. Germans sell about 400k Mercedes to USA annually, they only sell 13k to Russia. If the USA refuses to allow just this one product what will they do to Germany ? And, if China could get off the US dollar get hasn’t it done so since China is a sovereign country and is a vassal to no one ? The Chinese and Russians met couple weeks before the Ukraine invasions and they said their strategic partnership is forever, and two weeks after the invasion the Chinese banks stopped issuing letters of credit to Russian companies.

Posted by: ArmoGuy | Mar 27 2022 6:55 utc | 251

@blues #201
I posted an op-ed by Jean Kirkpatrick in the last open thread.
Read that to understand the road not taken.
The loss of American manufacturing is directly related to this. Yes, the US opened relations with China with Nixon, but the offshoring trend to China really got rolling right around 1990 - and even then, was only a redirect from the Asian Tigers era (Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea) and Japan after that.
The 1970s is when the offshoring really started: cars, clothing etc.
So what we have today in the US is a multigenerational failure by the American government.

Posted by: c1ue | Mar 27 2022 6:56 utc | 252

@Perimetr #226
Ukraine has a lot of mobile launchers: Tochka and Grad among them. They're hard to find and many have VERY long range.
I don't know why you cannot see how hunting hundreds to low thousands of such platforms is an issue.

Posted by: c1ue | Mar 27 2022 7:01 utc | 253

@ArmoGuy #247
Russia is not a top 10 trade partner with Germany, but China is.
Russia and China are clearly working together; sanctions on Russia will certainly fail if China doesn't agree to the sanctions. And China has more total trade with Germany even if the US is the biggest German export destination. So the real question isn't Russia vs. US re: sanctions, it is China+Russia vs. US re: sanctions. That question is still unanswered although the US did go the first step with China sanctions.

As for why the renminbi hasn't displaced the US dollar so far, there are both tactical and strategic/operational reasons.

why would the Chinese not take advantage of a dollar peg as part of their arsenal in taking economic advantage of the US? The Chinese have stopped increasing their US Treasury holdings since 2012...


Any successor to the US dollar must have the following:
a) Be a large economy. Only the EU, US and China qualify. Japan is big enough but they are both a non-entity militarily and a US bitch in policy, forever it seems.
b) Be fully convertible. China's renminbi is not convertible.

Why is China not convertible? Because a convertible renminbi would open the spigots to allow domestic Chinese capital to flee to the US and other tax haven centers.

In 2015, China opened the spigots a teensy bit, and $1 trillion left the country. This incident was a major reason why the VC-backed tech bubble in the US peaked that year.

That's also why China has been the first nation to roll out a credible, large scale CBDC (central bank digital currency). CBDCs are both negative on private banking (which is a plus for China vis a vis Tencent and Alipay, but is a major negative for bankster-sold out US and EU) and allows maximum central information gathering and control of money flows.
China's CBDC, the e-yuan, which has been in use for 18 months and is now rolling out "internationally" in Hong Kong, allows China to have a fully convertible renminbi (but e-yuan only) while still maintaining their domestic capital controls.

So net net: it is coming.

Posted by: c1ue | Mar 27 2022 7:12 utc | 254

Here's a thought: my daughter is in her early 20s, intelligent, thinks deeply about the history of music. But utterly uninterested in world affairs. Couldn't give a rat's ass. Putin, Zelensky, Ukraine, Biden, EU, NATO, etc... just names about which she has no knowledge and doesn't care to know. Sydney is a long way from anywhere. China may soon invest heavily in the Solomon Islands, may indeed militarize them one day. Australia will have its very own South Pacific Ukraine. Big deal, she says, not interested. So what? So what indeed. She's a bookworm, not on Facebook but uses Instagram, reads James Joyce and Raymond Chandler, an walking encyclopedia on 60's blues and rock, especially the Beatles, has an good UG degree. She just has no interest or stake. A generation cut off from history in a way mine was not. My adolescent diet was world history, esp. 20th century. Global liberalism works for her, it's poison for me. We connect on a lot of levels, but not this.

While that is mildly annoying to me, my main thought is this: how many people between 18 and, say, 45 neither investigate and follow events in Europe (and elsewhere) nor indeed even absorb Western media propaganda, but rather just don't care or care to know? It takes a lot of inflation, interest rates, high energy costs, etc for the frog to jump out of the pot. Most of them just see it as the natural ebb and flow of a 'natural' environment as though rising food prices were the tides or phases of the moon. what matters to them is the curation of themselves and their identity. A neurotic atomized generation drawing on their eyebrows while the world burns...

Posted by: Patroklos | Mar 27 2022 7:37 utc | 255

#251 con't

I bring this up because while driving home yesterday John Lennon's 'Imagine' came on the radio. The Marxist critic of liberalism in me began a dissection: "Imagine no possessions, I wonder if you can". I wonder if you could have John, but then imagining is easy. Doing is hard. And this vision he paints of an empty uniformity: "nothing to kill or die for" is only a step from "nothing to live or die for", a meaninglessness in which all the stakes that have animated humanity have been evacuated to be replaced by an insipid and banal infantility, a world full of children doing... well, doing nothing. The liberal dream: uniformity, conformity, fast food, simple, easy, fast gratification of wants, without the stakes that produce art, ideas, thought, cutlture, meaning.

She didn't want to know: "stop ruining it, it's just a song" she rebuked. Ideology is never more effective than when it's 'just a song'. Sigh.

Posted by: Patroklos | Mar 27 2022 7:47 utc | 256

@Robert Lindsay | Mar 27 2022 6:22 utc | 237

"Yes but most of those hate crimes are verbal attacks. Whites do commit a lot of verbal attacks, technically hate crimes I guess, against Asians. But almost all of these assaults, including the very bad ones, are by Blacks. A few are by Hispanics. Only 10% are by Whites."

Your source for this? As we have seen sources can be misinterpreted or drawn from non-comparable contexts. Are "the very bad ones" as in the killing of Shao Xiong ("Dennis") motivated by robbery, a class issue, or racism specifically targeting people of Asian descent?

From the first of my links @190 (AAPI = Asian-American & Pacific Islander):


"Janelle Wong, a professor of American Studies at the University of Maryland, College Park examined nine sources and four different data states relating to anti-Asian hate crimes. She looked at data from Stop AAPI Hate, Pew Research and official law enforcement statistics.

"Wong’s analysis revealed that more than three-quarters of perpetrators of anti-Asian hate crimes and incidents, before and during the pandemic, were White.

"Unfortunately, news reports and social media often encourage the idea that most anti-Asian violence and discrimination is committed by people of color, NBC News reports.

“'This is really how crime is framed in the United States — it’s framed as the source is Black,' Wong told NBC News.

"Wong says a misreading of a study from the American Journal of Criminal Justice, which examined anti-Asian hate crimes and incidents from 1994-2014, may have also contributed to misplaced blame. The study found that compared to anti-Black and anti-Latino hate crimes, a higher proportion of perpetrators of anti-Asian hate crimes were people of color.

"Ultimately, however, the study found that more than three-quarters of the perpetrators were White.

"The misconceptions perpetuate harmful racial stereotypes, specifically anti-Blackness, NBC News reports. Yet, Wong pointed out that despite the rise in anti-Asian hate crimes, Black people are the most targeted racial group.

"Wong added that the misconceptions can also hurt opportunities for racial solidarity. Most anti-Asian attackers are not people of color, however, research suggests that most people of color are concerned about the rise in anti-Asian hate.

"A poll conducted by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found that 85 percent of Black Americans and 82 percent of Hispanic Americans were at least somewhat concerned about the violence against Asians had increased during the pandemic. Only 74 percent of White Americans were at least somewhat concerned.

"Within those groups, 50 percent of Black Americans, 47 percent of Hispanic Americans and 41 percent of White Americans were extremely concerned."


I do *not* want to attempt to speak for Black or Hispanic people in the US but the feeling I've gotten from listening to them is that if anyone is being targeted for reasons of race, they know all too well they may be next. It's both solidarity *and* historical experience.

69% of US anti-Asian hate crimes occur in California and 75% of anti-Asian hate crimes are committed by whites, yet only 50% of the state's population is white—unless there is a drastic statistical anomaly at work this means anti-Asian hate crimes are disproportionately committed by whites. This is a major reason I'd like to see the source for the figures you quote.

Personal aside: I live in Oakland, California. 140 languages are spoken within city limits, half of them Asian. My block is working class and nearly evenly white, Hispanic, Black and Asian. One block east is a predominantly Black neighborhood, one block west a mixed Chinese and Vietnamese neighborhood—I'd be on Ground Zero if what you're implying is true. Never in 22 years have I seen an anti-Asian hate crime committed by anyone here, much less a Black person. What racial violence we see within Oakland city limits is almost always from white suburbanites or the Oakland Police Dept., which acts more as an occupying army than any kind of protective agency.

"Unfortunately, news reports and social media often encourage the idea that most anti-Asian violence and discrimination is committed by people of color.... the misconceptions can also hurt opportunities for racial solidarity." This is exactly the aim of both the corporate media and of our racialized socialization here in the US, as noted by @malenkov | Mar 27 2022 2:17 utc | 192

All this said, my original point was to raise the danger of an extreme increase in anti-Asian violence due to a war waged by the US on China. It should be obvious that this danger will come from racist whites, as it did during the pandemic.

Posted by: Vintage Red | Mar 27 2022 7:55 utc | 257

Posted by: Patroklos | Mar 27 2022 7:47 utc | @ 251 & 252

Until it comes to biting her on the arse, she won't get it. Events will change people. Good luck in the meantime with her improvement.

Forget abstract concepts as irrelevant, events change people.

Posted by: Paul | Mar 27 2022 8:06 utc | 258

Posted by: Kadath | Mar 27 2022 1:10 utc | 172

Biden: For God's sake...

I took it as a prayer. American strategy is to hope that Putin is struck by lightning.

Posted by: HMP | Mar 27 2022 8:06 utc | 259

As the Ukrainian army is reduced, parts of it get more brutal. The latest war crimes filmed are the systematic shooting of Russsian POWs (Unharmed when captured) in the legs.
The Dam mining mention in a post above is also very much part of that trend to destroy everything rather than leave.

These are the people that will be "evacuated" to Europe via Poland later. Coming to a town near you.

One "Intelligence" failure by NATO is the use of ready-made deep Bunkers. The first Khinzal missile hit one that was 60 metres underground (180 ft). (Said to be an ammunition dump - but probably used as a command centre) However, these bunkers were MADE BY THE SOVIETS. So the Russian must have had the plans as well as the locations. The Intello failure was the underestimation of the efficiency of Khinzals depth penetration. Pooofff, and it's gone.

A similar Command centre in or near Kiev surrendered intact. 61 prisoners, of which many were foreign "advisors", courtesy of NATO. Wiser move.

Posted by: Stonebird | Mar 27 2022 8:12 utc | 260

To #251

As someone in the cohort you speak of (I'm only a decade older than your daughter, a true blue Millenial), knowing politics and history will not serve the interest of us younger people because we know we have little control in bringing about massive change. Western politics is dominated by legacy wealth. You can have the best of intention and be a career politician but it will not get you far unless you know the right people. The only way any young person can make a difference in the future of the country is by being an insider (as with many industries, mine included).

This sense of helplessness and hopelessness is mitigated by cocooning oneself in personal consumption. You should actually be proud that your daughter is reading Joyce. I run a small business in the luxury market, 30-40% of my customers are around her age, and they barely read a book. They indulge in hyperindividualistic consumerism - from food to social media to mindless music - that betters neither the body nor mind. It is their coping mechanism in a world that is increasingly bleaker for our generation.

There are many of us who do read and know - even if the truth in its entirety is out of reach. We have a hard time convincing our peers, and our elders, that they are looking in the wrong direction. I choose to hold a different point of view from the majority, and I have alienated myself from many of my peers.

Posted by: bonks | Mar 27 2022 8:18 utc | 261

Posted by: Vintage Red | Mar 27 2022 7:55 utc | 253

Does the report break down the types of assaults and the racial breakdown in each type of assault?

Posted by: bonks | Mar 27 2022 8:27 utc | 262

Posted by: Vintage Red | Mar 27 2022 7:55 utc | 253

Thanks for your first hand report from Portland OR.

Posted by: paul | Mar 27 2022 8:36 utc | 263

Patroklos | Mar 27 2022 7:37 utc | 251

This is not restricted to adolescents. I have one acquaintance who simply refuses to look at anything which does not correspond to ingurgitated MSM blather. He walks off. This was seen with Covid. It is a reaction carefully nurtured by the mental straightjacket imposed over the last few years - "mask up, don't look, be afraid of your neighbour - but your EMOTIONS are the most important thing in the world."

Over the years I have often questioned if we actually all see the same thing. I came to the conclusion that we might see the same, but it is the "processing" of that information that enables or disables objective observation. If you have been trained from an early age how to "see" something, (in the above example; supplied by a "teacher, expert, parent, TV/MSM, WHY") then you literally cannot process any other information.

It is literally that you do not see the leaves on a tree - as you "know" it is a tree already, so why bother looking? I suspect that many of the older posters here do not have that "awe" they are supposed to have in front of a blackboard, or whiteboard these days, or a source of MSM.

I had a boss who put up a blackboard as a form of intimidation, we were supposed to "follow" the instructions he wrote, as children would by teacher. In fact all he got were rude notes and words written by the intended adult recipients. I am not sure the natural reaction (ours) would be replicated nowadays.

Posted by: Stonebird | Mar 27 2022 8:38 utc | 264

China is arming Pakistan by the way: does India arm Taiwan? No.
Posted by: Antonym | Mar 27 2022 6:27 utc | 238

So, you consider Pakistan as part of India?

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Mar 27 2022 8:39 utc | 265

bonks | Mar 27 2022 8:18 utc | 257

The sacred word 'democracy' keeps the peasants under control.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Mar 27 2022 8:47 utc | 266

Sorry, this was first posted to the wrong thread

@Cabe | Mar 27 2022 2:17 utc | 193

I can't resist saying how much I enjoyed Norway voting down EU membership not once but twice, in 1972 and 1994. The EU has always provided a model for completely undemocratic, unelected, authoritarian rule not subject to any accountability, a perfect way for the ruling elite to remove any opposition to their desires.

Thank you for your very true and kind words! Yes, we voted it down twice. In 1972 is was called EF (Europeisk Felleskap,'EEC' in english) and it was opposed by all areas outside the main cities. As this image from the TV broadcast at the night of the referendum shows, the countryside opposition was huge.

In the second referendum in 1994 (there is always a second referendum when the first does not provide the outcome desired by the 'elite') it was clear we were no linger talking about an 'economic community', but a centralized union. Given the very bad sound of the word 'union' in Norway after the '400-year night' in union with Denmark followed by almost 100 years in union with Sweden, it should be no surprise that the opposition to EU was even stronger in 1994 (image shows Anne Enger Lahnstein, leader of the victorious NO-movement). I was too young to vote in 1972, but I did vote no in 1994.

I hope the result of the current crisis will be that NATO is recognized as the aggressive tool that it is and that it is in no way providing any security in Europe. Similarly, I hope that the EU is recognized by all peoples of Europe as a non-democratic tool of oppression and exploitation and that Europe will return to a continent of truly independent nation states that serve their citizens instead of some unelected overlord in Brussels or their puppet masters across the Atlantic.

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 27 2022 8:52 utc | 267

@Patroklos | Mar 27 2022 7:47 utc | 252

She didn't want to know: "stop ruining it, it's just a song" she rebuked.

Thanks for the story about your daughter, I have a daughter in her 20's also.

Maybe you could suggest to your daughter that John Lennon was killed (by TPTB) for creating that powerful song. Songs like that are not "just a song", they are important commentary on society. To understand the songs you must have some understanding of society.

I remember the day in December 1980 when he was killed. I was shocked.


So long ago
Was it in a dream, was it just a dream?
I know, yes I know
Seemed so very real, it seemed so real to me

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 27 2022 9:13 utc | 268

New Rival for Twitter? Elon Musk Considers Creating Alternative Free Speech Platform

Posted by: Laurence | Mar 27 2022 9:15 utc | 269

Posted by: Stonebird | Mar 27 2022 8:38 utc | 260

good observation, I have had bosses like that. The more i succeeded the more the feared me. I didn't want their boring office job.

Posted by: Paul | Mar 27 2022 9:18 utc | 270

ArmoGuy | Mar 27 2022 6:55 utc | 247

You seem obsessed with Mercedes cars which are produced in Alabama especially SUVs and in China in a JV with BAIC. The major shareholders in Mercdes are Chinese and future engine development will be done in China alongside Volvo/Geely.

US marketplace is less important than you think and the German car industry is toast. ALL German car makers are on short time - no parts - and with only 30 days diesel supply in EU it is not likely heavy diesel cars will be getting rationed supply any time soon or now that Ad Blue is in short supply - doubtful Mercedes will be running much at all.

USA has simply lived beyond its means by leasing luxury cars or having 7 year notes and flipping into new finance deals. It is not sustainable as interest rates rise and liquidity dries up.

The margin calls along on commodities are going to stretch the Fed much more than LTCM in 1998

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | Mar 27 2022 9:33 utc | 271

China and Taiwan have been fighting for influence in the Pacific for many decades. Taiwan offers constructive aid such as agricultural assistance and solar farms whereas China’s aid has strings attached and encourages corruption. The troubles in the Solomons are historic and tribal between the Islands of Malaita and Guadalcanal. In all these islands, when riots break out such as those in Honiara and in Nukualofa (2006) the victims of the looting are usually the Chinese shopkeepers, hence the provision in the Solomons agreement for Chinese ‘peace-keepers’. All this wailing and gnashing of teeth about Chinese inroads ignores an important causal factor. As someone who has been to the Solomons and most of the Pacific islands that were formerly administered by Britain and then Australia and New Zealand I can tell you that the dislike of Australia and its continual racist bullying is universal and cannot be overstated. It got so bad after the most recent coup in Fiji that the Australians had Warships off the coast and were threatening to invade. The US had to tell them to pull their heads in and for good reason.

Posted by: BeEll | Mar 27 2022 9:36 utc | 272

Europe will return to a continent of truly independent nation states

Therein lies the problem. Germany has NO national identity or culture. Poland is a construct without democratic depth - even interwar it was a Junta putting Opposition in camps and cancelling passports of Jews and segregating them in universities

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | Mar 27 2022 9:44 utc | 273

BeEll | Mar 27 2022 9:36 utc | 268

There is also the cultural factor behind anti-Aus in the islands. Tribal lands are still considered the base of society for those beonging to a tribe. Obvious? Australia and others alienate tribal lands in "favour" of "private" (or corporate) ownership.
My experience is limited to PNG, where a person had the right to regain his tribal lands and just set up if he wanted to. Leave "western" civilisation if he didn't like it! There were still fights about land ownership at that time, and I presume there still are.

Clearly, when land is at a premium, (islands are not big and there is not much to eat on them, unless imported) ownership is paramount. So Australians will expropriate but Chinese will try to integrate (even if they do use Aussie inposed infrastucture to advance)

The land for the main road from Moresby to Alotau was "sold" to the PNG Government. The locals then said that it was "customary" land (Tribal) and regularly blocked it and then "resold" it to the Government again and again. It had increased in value so why not profit?

Posted by: Stonebird | Mar 27 2022 10:01 utc | 274

Norwegian | Mar 27 2022 8:52 utc | 263

To free Europe we will have to get rid of the Commission first. "Fonda lyin'" Has just allowed all EU privacy (and rights to) to be accessed by the US. EU privacy no longer exists.

Posted by: Stonebird | Mar 27 2022 10:05 utc | 275

Re: Vintage Red 253,

with respect to Anti-Asian violence, I cant speak for California, but in Toronto, my lived experience has been yes, it largely is being committed by blacks. My neighbors, 2 older Filipino women have frequently been harassed by two black boys, my wife has complained several times about being threaten by black men when walking alone and our Asian (mostly Filipinos) friends often mention being threaten by black men (mostly in the context of working in stores and being threaten by shoplifters). Perhaps it is just a case of poor people being victimized by other poor people with race being an incidental issue, but the bottom line remains the same, they feel more threatened by black men then white men.

As for Pew Research's "findings", as I've gotten older I've found that you can slice data in whatever way you want to support whatever position you want, just exclude unwanted data as "superfluous" or "irrelevant" or unclear. In my above example are these anti-Asian crimes, or just poor on poor crimes, how do you tell if the crime is committed specific due racial animus (does the perpetrator have to shout out "go home Asian" or otherwise expressly state racism in order to be flagged in that report as an anti-asian crime, what if the perpetrator is motivated simply by seeing the victim group as being a weaker target, rather than a desire for racial violence, but isn't seeing an ethnic group as overall weaker an equally racist motivation for targeting them?). Again, the lived experience is more informative then "researched findings", because the lived experience is real, while the "research" is just an approximation of reality based on data points that are "fuzzy". The bottom line remains the same, of the Asian women I know, they feel more threaten by young black men then by young white men.

Posted by: Kadath | Mar 27 2022 10:08 utc | 276

Paul (217).

Consortium news had an article on the Littoral class ship, and it revealed that it was an expensive pig in a poke with high maintenance costs I'm surprised the US navy hasn't scrapped all of that class, but then again the MIC has buddies in the Washington that would stop that happening to keep the dollars rolling in.

Posted by: Republicofscotland | Mar 27 2022 10:12 utc | 277

Someone linked me a nasty video of Ukrainians shooting pow's in the knees. Can't vouch for the authenticity, but it's making the rounds on the Russian internet, pissing people off.

Posted by: Skiffer | Mar 27 2022 10:23 utc | 278

@Stonebird | Mar 27 2022 10:05 utc | 271

Whatever works, but these quislings must be ousted.

There has been a lot of talk about Ukraine being integrated with the EU, but what is really happening is that the EU is becoming Ukraine.

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 27 2022 10:27 utc | 279

How to unload anti tank mines from a truck.

Obviously, these guys are winning,

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 27 2022 10:30 utc | 280

Re: Skiffer, @274,

Once the war in Ukraine (or special military operation if you prefer) is over, I'm looking forward to the war crimes trials I have a feeling that the Russians wont hold back and we'll have hundreds, if not thousands, of witnesses giving testimonials of widescale human rights abuses. I really hope that the Russians reveal more about the US bio-warfare labs and the human testing that they performing. If they do so, I bet we'll see a whole bunch of US elites in crisis mode about to be discredited in the entire global south

Posted by: Kadath | Mar 27 2022 10:31 utc | 281

@bonks | Mar 27 2022 8:27 utc | 258

"Does the report break down the types of assaults and the racial breakdown in each type of assault?"

@Kadath | Mar 27 2022 10:08 utc | 272

"As for Pew Research's 'findings', as I've gotten older I've found that you can slice data in whatever way you want to support whatever position you want, just exclude unwanted data as 'superfluous' or 'irrelevant' or unclear.... the lived experience is more informative then 'researched findings', because the lived experience is real, while the 'research' is just an approximation of reality based on data points that are 'fuzzy'. The bottom line remains the same, of the Asian women I know, they feel more threaten by young black men then by young white men."

@bonks & @Kadath

I don't claim any particular stripes for research or other expertise; I'm just against racism, keep my eyes open and try to be open to learning something new. The study and stats I found were a result of a quick web search after JC's response @167 to my comment @140—I don't believe either link I posted broke reports down into types of violence, more where they were and who they were against. Only the Asian American News report went into who perpetrated hate crimes against people of Asian descent.

I've even heard black men say they feel more threatened by other black men on the street, and this clearly is not anti-Black racist violence, but purely because of the desperation of poverty and denied opportunities due to the racism of larger society.

I totally appreciate what you write about how data can be sliced according to desired emphasis, and that Toronto's reality in this may be different than Oakland's. I think it would take much deeper digging to get the kind of data that would allow thorough answers to these questions. My original point, though, was that anti-Asian violence spiked very noticeably once the Covid pandemic was underway—particularly after the lethal attack in Georgia—and that in the event of the US launching a war against China, that we could expect this spike to be a couple of orders of magnitude worse. Particularly with significant US losses due to Chinese air and naval defense.

I have a strong sense that this spike in violence would be driven by white Sinophobia rather than any of the socioeconomic factors we're getting into.

@paul | Mar 27 2022 8:36 utc | 259

"Thanks for your first hand report from Portland OR."

I'm in Oakland, CA but you are most welcome!

Posted by: Vintage Red | Mar 27 2022 10:49 utc | 282

The head of Crimea, Sergei Aksyonov, supported the statement of the head of the Luhansk People's Republic, Leonid Pasechnik, about the possibility of holding a referendum on the entry of the Luhansk People's Republic into the Russian Federation in the near future.

Aksyonov expressed full confidence that, as part of Russia, the LPR would overcome the consequences of 8 years of war with the Ukrainian regime, and the colossal potential of Donbass would be fully realized.

Posted by: Kim | Mar 27 2022 10:51 utc | 283

In response to Kadath@277,

I think you are right and share your hope. At the same time, just glancing at some of the comments below that particular video, there's a noticeable number of, presumably, people who vocally voice their support for these war crimes and more besides.

A few days ago I saw a video of a middle-aged woman from Mariupol fervently arguing with her neighbors, in the ruins of their yard, that Ukraine never did anything to hurt Donbas, that the people of DNR&LNR "bombed themselves" and that Russia was responsible for everything. As deluded as her position was, it is far from being the most radical; the talk of human cockroaches and vermin that must be expunged, of sub-humans who deserve mistreatment by virtue of existing, is prevalent in pro-Ukrainian discussions. And, I believe it is rubbing off big-time on those members of the Western public who are conditioned to be receptive to Ukrainian messaging by the msm. Somehow I don't think the people driving or getting caught up in this wave of hatred will face a tribunal, being either out of reach of justice or seen as innocent of committing any physical offense. They will interpret the punishment given to those who served as tools of their twisted ideals as martyrdom, I believe, and will only further entrench themselves within their resentment, dragging all those who are willing to listen along with them.

Posted by: Skiffer | Mar 27 2022 10:55 utc | 284

@Kadath 277

Yes, I agree. It’ll be time for a great reckoning, and pussyfooting about it would be a real waste of opportunity. And it’s especially dismaying, cumulatively, whenever the bad guys get off scott free.

Posted by: Featherless | Mar 27 2022 11:01 utc | 285

You come and shit on my door step!
You think I won’t do anything about it?

A message in dropping a few missiles in broad daylight next to the potus and his great chariot and gathering of the pack of Hyenas gathering and yelping at my gate.

It’s pretty simple - even a dumb animal would understand it.
Like killing a chicken to scare the monkeys.

Posted by: DunGroanin | Mar 27 2022 11:04 utc | 286

@276 Norwegian All I can say is that it was lucky for them that they were wearing brown pants.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Mar 27 2022 11:10 utc | 287

@ Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 26 2022 17:55 utc | 16
I made the following comment on the Saker on the Hudson dialogue. Do I understand you have direct contact with Dr Hudson, Karlof1? I think you have mentioned asking him a question a couple of times, but on his site there is no "contact" link (other than through Patreon which is of no use to me). I'd be really interested in his view on my thesis:

Much of Dr Hudson's interesting discussion is apparently based on the premise that for Russia selling hydrocarbons for Rubles to "Unfriendly Countries" [what a beautiful Lavrovian expression!] is a euphemism for cutting off sales to such countries altogether, but I see the real beauty in this response as an opportunity to totally rebalance the economic order from a dollar-biased economy - one which unfairly favours "dollar-friendlies" and unfairly assaults "dollar-unfriendlies" - to one which fairly favours "Friendly Countries" [read: the Global South] and fairly disfavours "Unfriendly Countries" - totally turning the tables on the Hegemon. Both the "dollar-friendlies" and the "Unfriendly Countries" I would see as overwhelmingly the extractative/rent-seeking/exploitative/parasitic countries, while both the "dollar-unfriendlies" and the "Friendly Countries" I would equate much more, on the whole, with real producers and holders of natural wealth. (Aside: historically it was always the East that was vastly wealthy and the West were paupers, until the West temporarily managed to distort the appearance of reality in their favour through unfair leverage).

I would love to hear Dr Hudson's view on my thesis below, if I am lucky enough that he reads this [this is not my field, I announce in advance!].

After President Putin's announcement on the sale of hydrocarbons in Rubles, the Ruble fully recovered its recently lost value since the announcement of sanctions. Unfriendly Countries need hydrocarbons, and therefore they need Rubles. With limited supply of Rubles, Rubles go up.

For Friendly Countries, however, the world is a different place. India, for example, as a Friendly Country can buy oil in Rupees. This gives India a major competitive edge over all Unfriendly Countries. Likewise other Friendly Countries can use their own currency or some other Friendly currency to purchase oil, and thereby gain a competitive advantage. This is going to very quickly be reflected in a massive shift and rebalancing of global inter-currency exchange rates along brand new fault lines to reflect these new financial conditions.

Where previously global exchange rates were grossly distorted by the unnatural favour given to "dollar-friendlies", natural market forces will respond to the differing ease of access to scarce Rubles and complementarily differing need for scarce Rubles by heavily discounting "Unfriendly" currencies and favouring instead "Friendly" currencies.

How do "Unfriendly Countries" gain access to scarce Rubles to buy essential hydrocarbons [and wheat, fertilisers, titanium, neon, palladium etc]? Most "Friendly Countries" of the Global South have toxic debts denominated in dollars, Euros and Yen, which have to be serviced. Instead of servicing these debts in dollars, Euros and Yen, they can offer - as value-added service - the scarce Rubles to which they have privileged access - and because these Global South countries have leverage from their competitive Ruble-Advantage - and the "Unfriendly Countries" are desperately disadvantaged - they can demand a premium in the form of heavily discounted dollar-payments.

Russia and China recently announced that they will construct a new financial system based on production, commodity assets, synergy and win-win relations instead of the current one based on extraction, rent-seeking, exploitation, discrimination, and steal-lose relationships. Whilst the announcement came out of the blue, my assumption is that they have been working on the groundwork for this new financial system for many years already. The Russians and Chinese are Master Planners. If they already have the basic foundations at a sufficiently developed level that they can initiate crucial elements of the new system sufficiently quickly, that would facilitate and enhance the natural market processes I sketched above.

How will the new economic order interface with the old economic order? The West's suicidal sanctions are rapidly dividing the world into two trade blocks: a resource-rich producer block with ready access to Rubles, cheap hydrocarbons and cheap fertilisers, and favouring win-win relations; and a self-bankrupted financialised block with difficult access to expensive hydrocarbons and fertilisers, and difficult access to scarce Rubles. It would make sense that the primary mechanism for the interface between the two systems would instrumentalise the servicing and elimination of toxic debt to the Global South (including the asset-stripping dollar extraction from the Global South through toxic "privatisation" of resources and infrastructure to dollar corporations). If the mechanism for making hydrocarbons, fertilisers and Rubles available to "Unfriendly Countries" is linked to the discounted servicing and elimination of toxic debt (and/or the pricing structures are linked), this would counterbalance the disbalance caused by the extreme desperation of the "Unfriendly Countries".

The new World Order should be a natural World Order, not an unnatural World Order. Just as in the old World Order the rent-seeking Elites used unnatural and unjustly acquired leverage to force extraction of rent at the most exploitative rates from the most desperate communities (most of whom were desperate because they are so resource-rich and hence targetted), thereby creating unnatural and untenable levels of toxic debt; so then, in instantiating the link between the new and old financial systems, the central role of the servicing and elimination of toxic debt must be inseparable from the availability and pricing of hydrocarbons, fertilisers and Rubles.

As natural fall-out from the division into two trading blocks, the "Friendly Countries" and the "Unfriendly Countries", global inter-currency exchange rates will settle along brand new fault-lines which reflect the differing access to and cost of hydrocarbons, fertilisers and Rubles. These exchange rates will heavily benefit "Friendly Countries" and disadvantage "Unfriendly Countries". Thereby hydrocarbons which are very expensive to "Unfriendly Countries" will be intrinsically much cheaper to "Friendly Countries", reducing their operating costs and the costs of living, and even further preferencing their local economies. Win-win all the way!

Perhaps Russia should even create separate "Friendly Rubles" and "Unfirendly Rubles" (the former being unavailable to "Unfriendly Countries" and disqualified as payment medium by "Unfriendly Countries" for resources, and convertible only through the mechanism of servicing or elimination of toxic debt).

For years there has been talk of a "Petroyuan" to replace the Petrodollar; the Russians are masters of strategy and surprise - the Petroruble has turned the global financial system upside down overnight, and turned the tables on Empire!

Posted by: BM | Mar 27 2022 11:16 utc | 288

Background information on the nazi ties in Ukraine:

Make Nazism Great Again

Speaking on that, how come Russia have not taken out the leaders of Azov (or other nazi group leaders)? That would surely weaken the nazi efforts greatly.

Posted by: Zanon | Mar 27 2022 11:18 utc | 289


The mighty Dollar?

‘ With the coin displayed in front of them, Jesus said, “Whose likeness and inscription is this?” The Herodians and Pharisees, stating the obvious, said, “Caesar’s.” Then Jesus brought an end to their foolish tricks: “Therefore render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s” ’

My sermon today posted on previous article to help us understand sky fairyism

Btw2 some superb comments already on this thread and others in recent days by regulars and earnest noobs - o believe we are discoursing ourselves towards a common understanding of our existence as humans - ALL humans, no Exceptionalism - happy Sunday friends.

Posted by: | Mar 27 2022 11:21 utc | 290

NSFW! Very bad video here of Ukrainian soldiers shooting Russian POW's in the legs and abusing them. Some of those guys look like they are in shock and will die soon if they are not given medical treatment. We've been telling the world all this time that they're a bunch of Nazis. Well, this is the stuff that Nazis do, hey.

Posted by: Robert Lindsay | Mar 27 2022 11:24 utc | 291

Posted by: Vintage Red | Mar 27 2022 7:55 utc | 253

Look in the media at these serious violent crimes. Look at the videos people are making of these violent crimes against Asians. It's almost all Blacks attacking Asians. Why? No idea! In New York of the serious violent crimes against Asians, 75% were committed by Blacks, 15% by Hispanics, and 10% by Whites.

Everybody knows Blacks commit a ton of violent crime. The Black rates for murder and robbery are 9-10X the White rate. The difference is stark.

Posted by: Robert Lindsay | Mar 27 2022 11:29 utc | 292

Posted by: Vintage Red | Mar 27 2022 7:55 utc | 253

Asians get assaulted all the time by Black thugs in Oakland. And in other parts of the Bay Area for that matter. They seem to prefer to prey on the elderly. You need to open up a newspaper sometime.

Posted by: Robert Lindsay | Mar 27 2022 11:31 utc | 293

@213 Kim
"We finally took Kamenka and advanced along the highway in the direction of Slavyansk."

That is extremely bad news for the Ukrainians.

News that definitely isn't going to make it into the situation reports of The Institute for the Study of War.

Kamenka is the next village on the M03 highway south of Izyum. Not important in itself, but its capture would open the way to Slavyansk which is a much bigger town and whose capture would essentially close the cauldron around those 60,000 Ukrainian troops.

Those Ukkie forces have to either run now - like, right this very instant - or they need to start collecting white linen to fashion into flags.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Mar 27 2022 11:31 utc | 294

Posted by: Vintage Red | Mar 27 2022 7:55 utc | 253

The spa shootings were quite obviously not hate crimes. The guy had a sex addiction and he went crazy over it and shot up a few of the Asian massage parlors he was frequenting for sex. Everyone who knew him said he had nothing against Asians at all, actually he liked them. He just shot up the whorehouses he was patronizing.

Yes, Whites commit most hate crimes against Asians, but my understanding is that most of those are verbal attacks, and I'm not even sure if that's against the law.

Posted by: Robert Lindsay | Mar 27 2022 11:34 utc | 295

Once the war in Ukraine (or special military operation if you prefer) is over, I'm looking forward to the war crimes trials I have a feeling that the Russians wont hold back and we'll have hundreds, if not thousands, of witnesses ...
Posted by: Kadath | Mar 27 2022 10:31 utc | 277

Just as it is again and again emphasised that the current situation is "not about Ukraine", I get the very strong suspicion that the upcomining war crimes tribunal will be "not about Ukraine" - rather, it will be about war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by the Hegemon and all its proxies. I think it will go back in time beyond 2014. And whilst numerically virtually all the prisoners in the docks and most of the witnesses will be from Ukraine and from the period since 2014, I think indictments will include US politicians, EU politicians, and journalists (especially editors) from the western MSM - for inciting war of aggression and inciting other war crimes.

As to bio weapons - Russia already has documentary evidence, and they have witnesses, and quite possibly also [low level] perpetrators, so it is absolutely without question that the war crimes tribunal will hear cases involving the bio weapons; but again I suspect the emphasis will be on the top level perpetrators and decision makers rather than those in the docks [then again, maybe they might have some of the top Ukrainian decision makers in the docks] - certainly US politicians/military/researchers/contractors, and Germans, and others.In the latter case I expect that to include indictments ... but that's just an opinion of course. If they can find some way of grabbing some of these criminals they will (but withoutresorting to the illegal renditions of the Hegemon).

Posted by: BM | Mar 27 2022 11:39 utc | 296

Posted by: Stonebird | Mar 27 2022 8:38 utc | 260

This is not restricted to adolescents. I have one acquaintance who simply refuses to look at anything which does not correspond to ingurgitated MSM blather.

My mother and brother are both like that. IQ = 140+. My father was like that too. IQ = 129. Brother and father have masters degrees, mother did two years of law school. Especially on foreign policy. None of those three would ever go against US foreign policy for even one instant. I've noticed this is true with just about everyone. Most Democrats in the Congress are horrendous on foreign policy. Even the progressives are awful. Bernie Sanders has always had horrible foreign policy. Even the Squad is not that great. AOC's foreign policy is not very good. The only good ones are Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, and Cori Bush. There's an Indian guy who respresents Silicon Valley who is pretty good, but he's all in on this Ukraine War.

Democrats, liberals, and progressives in the US are always only good on domestic policy. Their foreign policy is without exception absolutely horrendous and unbelievably reactionary. All of the EU governments, including the social democrats, are exactly the same way. The German Communist Party used to call social democrats the left wing of fascism. I used to not believe them, but now I think they were onto something.

Posted by: Robert Lindsay | Mar 27 2022 11:43 utc | 297

There are many of us who do read and know - even if the truth in its entirety is out of reach. We have a hard time convincing our peers, and our elders, that they are looking in the wrong direction.We have a hard time convincing our peers, and our elders, that they are looking in the wrong direction. I choose to hold a different point of view from the majority, and I have alienated myself from many of my peers.

Posted by: bonks | Mar 27 2022 8:18 utc | 257

The problem is how our human minds are wired. Once a "program" has been installed in the mind, it is very tough to deprogram. In my experience, "deprogramming" works best when the mind is confronted by shocking information while being isolation from the environment where the "program" is common. Few have the luxury to travel to Russia and stay for for some time to realize that Russians are normal people, unlike their representation in western media.

The Brits were/are good at this, as they have been practicing this for centuries. One way was through literature, but to see this one needs to do a bit of digging. Current champion at this is Hollywood.

Posted by: Tom_12 | Mar 27 2022 11:58 utc | 298

Im just reading an sf novel by a guy with at least libertarian leanings (W. Michael Gear); it's a novel about worldwide collapse starting with a cyberattack on the banking system, and he advocates that part of the reason for the collapse was the US "withdrawing from the world stage, pulling back on our commitments to our allies" (a character the author seems to be speaking through). even libertarians buy the bullshit about the US as world cop, and these are people who supposedly dont trust the government.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Mar 27 2022 12:01 utc | 299

now they want to go after Caitlin Johnstone. warning, very scary picture of Hilary Clinton. she looks demented.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Mar 27 2022 12:14 utc | 300

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