Leading German newspaper says Russia should be threatened with nuclear war — Peter Schwarz | World Socialist Web Site

Obviously no Einstein’s present when this was a consideration. A nuclear war would leave most of Europe and NATO’s allies as piles of Ash not long before the US were advocating “Peace Talks” if it looked even remotely like they would fall in harm’s way.

Taking Sides

Source: World Socialist Web Site

Leading German newspaper says Russia should be threatened with nuclear war

By Peter Schwarz 

12 February 2015

One day before the crisis meeting on Ukraine in Minsk, a leading German newspaper, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ), published an editorial calling for NATO to militarily escalate the confrontation with Russia to the point of a nuclear attack.

The conservative newspaper appeared on Tuesday with a front-page commentary by its co-editor, Berthold Kohler, calling for a policy of “deterrence” against Russia up to the “highest level.”

Kohler accused German Chancellor Angela Merkel of shrinking “from delivering weapons to Kiev that could entangle the West in a proxy war,” even though Russian President Vladimir Putin was prepared “to escalate the dispute to the brink of a nuclear conflict.”

“If the West maintains its view that the conflict ‘cannot be solved militarily,’” Kohler warned, “then, in the worst case…

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How many people would die in a war between the US and Russia? — Andre Damon | World Socialist Web Site

Interesting, but the idea that the US could “kick ass” (Lindsey Graham)is comedic in the extreme, far more likely is the fact that when they are not scoring own goals in killing their allies, they would most likely shoot themselves in the foot. The US does not have the military might or the “know-how” for a ground assault nor the military armaments to take on either Russia or China(or even Iran, for that matter) and the citizens who would most likely die, are the muppets and sheep allied to NATO. The most likely scenario involves a great many piles of ash on the EU side of the world with the US calling for “Peace Talks” as soon as they are under threat of harm. The US couldn’t organize the proverbial “booze up in a brewery” but could quite conceivably lead the EU sheep up the garden path towards Armageddon.

Taking Sides

How many people would die in a war between the US and Russia?

by Andre Damon

21 February 2017

Source: World Socialist Web Site

The American ruling class is locked in a ferocious internal conflict centered on issues of foreign policy and war. The Democratic Party, along with a section of Republicans and most of the media, is conducting a hysterical campaign against Donald Trump for his supposed conciliatory attitude toward Russia and its president, Vladimir Putin. These forces are fronting for the intelligence establishment, which is determined to prevent any retreat from the policy of aggressive confrontation with Moscow carried out by the Obama administration.

Trump, for his part, speaks for elements in the ruling elite and the state who view Iran and China to be the more immediate targets for US provocation and preparations for war, and would like to tamp down the conflict with Russia for now…

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A beginner’s guide to the Guardian

The Guardian has long since been a propagandist and sordid mud slinger. Their only leftist leanings are Monbiot and the self serving pseudo leftist Owen Jones, who has no moral standard or ethics and is most definitely not a socialist – he just likes to sound off.

OffGuardian

by Darren Allen

The Guardian’s revised CiF  slogan, as suggested by OffG The Guardian’s revised CiF slogan, as suggested by OffG

The Guardian newspaper is a limited company and has been since 2008 when the Scott Trust was wound up and replaced by The Scott Trust Ltd, which appoints a board comprised of bankers, management consultants, venture capitalists and other classic left-wingers. The paper itself is written nearly exclusively by elite-educated members of the upper middle class. The viewpoint you would expect to come from this privileged set-up is what you do get.

Murray McDonald, in his Hidden History of the Guardian, explains that The Guardian was launched to undermine working-class leaders of the early 19th century reform movement (whose members were massacred at Peterloo), and during its 150 year history has denounced Ireland’s freedom fighters, Women Suffragettes, Abraham Lincoln’s campaign to end slavery, third world nationalism and pretty much any kind of genuine independence from…

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Reality Check: Lavrov reminds OSCE that Minsk Agreements recognized Donbass republics

February 21, 2017 – Fort Russ –
Anti-Fascist, translated by J. Arnoldski –
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia, Sergey Lavrov, expressed bewilderment at OSCE General Secretary Lamberto Zannier’s complaint that the Russian president recognized the leadership of the Donbass republics on February 18th by signing the decree on temporarily recognizing DPR/LPR documents.
According to Sergey Lavrov, the leadership of the Donbass republics was recognized much earlier. At a press conference following talks with his Swedish counterpart, Margot Wallstrom, Lavrov explained:
“I want to explain to Mr. Zannier and everyone who is complaining of alleged violations of international law that the recognition of the leaders of the self-proclaimed republics was done with the signing of the Minsk Agreements, which were unanimously approved by UN Security Council resolutions. They were recognized as one side of the conflict, and as such they are working on implementing the Minsk Agreements.”
Furthermore, Lavrov stressed that in the absence of progress with the Minsk Agreements on the fault of the Ukrainian authorities, the republics’ authorities have the right to not have to worry about surviving on their own territory.
“And we will help them with this in every way,” Lavrov said.

On Sanctions, Donbass Passports, and International Law

On Sanctions, Donbass Passports, and International Law

February 22, 2017 – Fort Russ –
Rostislav Ishchenko, RIA Analytics – translated by J. Arnoldski –
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, returning from his disastrous trip to Munich for a conference on security issues, met on Tuesday in Kiev with the EU commissioner for humanitarian aid and crisis management, Christos Stylianides. Whether out of desire to smooth out the unpleasant impression of Ukraine’s being complete disregarded in Munich, or simply out of inertia, Poroshenko spoke about strengthening sanctions against Russia with this European official responsible for humanitarian assistance and ensuring human rights in crisis regions.
Poroshenko justified his position by saying that Russia’s recognition of documents from the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics is a gross violation of the Minsk Agreements. 
Honestly speaking, I doubt that Kiev believes in the possibility of sanction pressure on Russia being heightened. It is just as unlikely that the Kiev government still believes in the arrival of European investments of IMF financing of Ukraine. They simply have to promise the nation some kind of “bright future.”
Besides greetings and farewells, Poroshenko had to say something at the talks. But what does a representative of Ukraine have to talk about if not sanctions or money? Ukraine has nothing to sell. It has nothing with which to buy something. Ukraine won’t be let into the EU and NATO. And they won’t be given a visa-free regime. And although the sanctions still exist, they won’t be strengthened. And although the IMF is not giving money, it still hasn’t finally refused to do so. But talks are being held nonetheless.
 
Failed sanctions 
Even if we assume that Russia was violating something, the EU and US are clearly not eager to impose new sanctions. Why? 
First of all, they don’t have any new excuses to strengthen sanctions. They could only infinitely reinforce sanctions over Crimea. But secondly, the US and EU have always used sanctions in a certain sequence. The objective of sanctions is destabilizing the economic situation inside the target country in order to force its leadership to capitulate to the West and unconditionally accept its demands. Or sanctions are used to prepare the ground for an invasion or coup. 
If it becomes clear that these goals are not being achieved, then the West starts looking for opportunities to lift sanctions. This was the case with Iran and China.
The same thing is now happening with the anti-Russian sanctions. In both Washington and Brussels, they perfectly understand that instead of destroying the Russian economy, finance, and destabilizing the social sphere, the sanctions have led to a dramatic consolidation of Russian society and accelerated the elimination of financial and economic dependence on the Western system. Now the West is faced not with strengthening sanctions, but the problem of withdrawing from the sanctions regime to save face.
The West was a bit too self-confident and, by imposing sanctions, demanded too much from Moscow (including returning Crimea to Ukraine). If the sanctions are lifted now without having won anything in return, then the whole world will see clearly that the West has lost this geopolitical confrontation to Russia. On the other hand, if they drag on the sanctions for too long, then an even more difficult situation could arise: you never know what other course Russia could take to force Ukraine to make peace in Donbass.
So now the EU and US are dodging each other and trying to nudge each other ahead. If the EU removes the sanctions first, then Washington could say that its allies have betrayed the cause of democracy, so there’s no need for the US to suffer alone.
If the US lifts sanctions first, then the EU will cite the example of the leader of the free world. Then it seems that sanctions will be running in place in for some time.
 
What does Russia’s recognition of DPR/LPR documents mean? 
Poroshenko’s justification of the need for new sanctions was extremely weak and, in the very least, contradictory. First of all, the reference to the Minsk Agreements doesn’t work. According to the agreements, nothing was said about DPR/LPR documents, so Russia had a free hand in this. There is no outright ban on the recognition of passports contained in the agreements.
Secondly, Russia is a guarantor of the Minsk Agreements. The recognition of DPR/LPR documents affects Russia’s fulfillment of these duties only positively if at all. In the very least, it increases the consideration of the population permanently inhabiting the DPR and LPR and controls its movement.
Thirdly, Russia had de-facto already recognized the republic’s documents. The residents of the DPR/LPR whose Ukrainian passports were lost over the course of hostilities crossed the border. Youth finishing school had the opportunity to enter Russian universities with education certificates from the republics. The DPR and LPR also instituted independent birth, death, and marriage certificates as Ukraine declined to do so.
Since Ukraine did not protest against the recognition of DPR/LPR documents for more than a year, its protest on the institution of a legal framework for such is questionable.
Fourthly, international law allows for contact with authorities de facto controlling a territory even if you do not recognize them. Ukraine itself supports contacts with the DPR and LPR insofar as it signed the Minsk Agreements with them.
As a guarantor of the agreements’ implementation, Russia has even more of a right and obligation to support such contact. And the very fact of contact suggests that you recognize in one way or another the documents confirming the identity of the representatives of the territory with which you entering into contact. 
If Russia, France, Germany, and with some reservations, Ukraine recognize the documents confirming the authority of the leaders of the unrecognized republics (who, by the way, crossed two borders to arrive in Minsk), then why not recognize a document confirming the fact of a child’s birth in Donetsk in 2016? The fact that Ukraine refuses to issue a birth certificate does not mean that the fact of a birth is cancelled. 
Fifthly, Putin’s decree emphasizes that the recognition of DPR/LPR documents is temporary – until the implementation of the Minsk Agreements. Over the course of the agreements’ implementation, the ultimate status of the republics is to be determined as well as just what documents the population will use. Consequently, the decree was issued not in spite of, but in pursuance of the Minsk Agreements.
 
Who is responsible for protecting the population?  
Finally, there is another interesting collision here. Last year, on October 12th, Ukrainian media had quite a celebration. The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe adopted a resolution in which, inter alia, it was indicated in relation to Crimea, the DPR and LPR that “according to international law, Russia, which de-facto exercises control over these territories, is responsible for the protection of the population.” 
Kiev praised the resolution as an example of recognition of “Russian aggression.” However, every coin has two sides. Control over the territories does not necessarily mean their occupation. For example, the US controls the Kiev regime, but has not sent troops to Ukraine.
On the other hand, according to the same international law, the side controlling territories has the right not only to recognize local documents, but even to issue its own ID’s. After all, this has to be considered as part of fulfilling the task of defending the population.
Thus, in order to fulfill the obligations placed by PACE on it, Russia has at least two options: distribute its own passports (or some kind of temporary documents) or recognize (prior to the realization of Minsk) local documents. Moscow chose the most gentle way.
One can only imagine what would happen in Kiev if the distribution not of Russian passports, but of some other kind of temporary (but still Russian) documents substituting for passports was begun. Thus, from the point of view of international law, Russia’s position is invulnerable, and from the point of view of the Minsk Agreements it merely facilitates their implementation.
Since we all know that in modern politics even being absolutely right does not mean that the West won’t obstruct the law if it benefits it, it must be noted that the sanctions game has long since been recognized by the West as senseless and unprofitable. 
Thus, it would be better if Poroshenko had asked Christos Stylianides for money for humanitarian projects. 

Why Albanians Fled Kosovo During the 1999 NATO Bombing

An excellent insight into the NATO and US “staged” restructuring of Yugoslavia weaponizing fear and historic tradition to achieve the desired results.

OffGuardian

Interview with Čedomir Prlinčević from the Emperor’s New Clothes

refugees fleeing Kosovo for the Macedonian border in 1999 refugees fleeing Kosovo for the Macedonian border in 1999

This interview dates from December 2000, but is still highly relevant to today. NATO’s conduct in Kosovo can be seen as anticipating much of its current actions on Syria and/or Ukraine. The same exploitation of emotional and inaccurate narratives, the same promotion of wars of aggression in the guise of “humanitarian intervention”, the same promotion of dangerous elements such as terrorists and gangsters as “rebels” or “freedom fighters.” The same utter disregard for the longterm consequences for the people who have to live in these regions. In 18 years little or nothing has changed, and the same playbook is still in use.

Introduction

This is the second Emperor’s Clothes interview with Čedomir Prlinčević (pronounced Ched-o-meer Pra-linch-eh-vich).

Mr. Prlinčević, an historian, was chief archivist in Priština, capital of Kosovo, and head of the…

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