RUSSIA/BELARUS/UKRAINE | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

RUSSIA/BELARUS/UKRAINE

Jun 09 06:27

Major NATO build-up in Romania as Black Sea conflict with Russia worsens

The U.S. is funding a $152-million construction project in Romania to transform the air base in Câmpia Turzii into a “new major hub for NATO aircraft in the Black Sea region,” in the words of a report from Balkan Insight of last month. The U.S. has deployed warplanes to the base since Romania became a NATO member in 2004. In fact, the following year the U.S. acquired access to several military bases in the country, including the Mihail Kog?lniceanu International Airport (and several more in neighboring Bulgaria the next year).

In 2016 the U.S. installed a missile shield land-based Aegis SPY-1 radar and twelve missile tubes for the Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IB interceptor missile in Deveselu .

In 2019 the Pentagon began upgrading the Mihail Kog?lniceanu base.

U.S. European Command maintains Black Sea Area Support Group (formerly Joint Task Force-East) troop deployments in Romania as well.

Jun 09 06:25

NATO chief meets Biden, Pentagon head; blasts Russia for aggression against NATO states, evokes Article 5 war clause

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg met with President Joe Biden, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan on June 7, a week ahead of the military bloc’s summit in Brussels. The trip that brings Biden to NATO headquarters will be his first one outside the U.S.

The Pentagon’s transcript of his meet with Austin provides a clear indication of what the impending summit will dwell on and which actions – and against which nation – the meeting will chart for the upcoming years. Stoltenberg’s comments included:

“The global balance of power is shifting. We see the rise of China, we see Russia continue to be responsible for aggressive actions against NATO Allies, and our neighbors, in cyberspace, through hybrid means, and also the way they have used military force against the Ukraine, Georgia and other countries in that region.”

Jun 09 06:19

IS THE “3 SEAS INITIATIVE” THE WEST’S ANSWER TO CHINA’S BELT AND ROAD?

To counter not only China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) but also Russia's growing ties with Western Europe, an "alternative" infrastructure drive is being proposed that if and when completed, Washington, London, and Brussels hopes will further contain Russia and cut China off from European markets.

Jun 08 11:49

Russia Mulls Ordering State Firms To Switch To Euro, "Preparing" For Possible Disconnect From SWIFT

On Monday a flurry of bombshell statements came out of Russia after at the end of last week Putin blasted the United States for using the dollar as a tool for waging "economic & political war" in an address before the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. Amid a tightening US and EU sanctions noose, most recently surrounding the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, Putin also suggested a more "acceptable" scenario of European nations paying for Russian gas in euros, amid what alarmingly appears a broader de-dollarization effort which includes Russia's sovereign wealth fund deciding to dump all of its dollars and dollar-denominated assets in favor of those denominated in euros, yuan - or further buying precious metals like gold. "The euro is completely acceptable for us in terms of gas payments. This can be done, of course, and probably should be done," Putin calmly said Thursday.

Jun 08 11:48

Blinken Will Participate in Biden's Bilateral Meeting With Putin in Geneva, State Dept Says

When US President Joe Biden travels to Europe later this week to meet with the G7 powers and NATO allies before meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin next week, he will be urging them to form a more united and comprehensive effort against Russia, including in cybersecurity.

"Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken will accompany President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. on his June travel to Cornwall, UK; Brussels, Belgium; and Geneva, Switzerland," State Department spokesperson Ned Price told reporters on Monday, adding that Blinken "will participate in President Biden's bilateral meeting with Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin in Geneva."

Price added that Blinken would also be a part of Biden's bilateral meetings on the margins of the G7 summit in Cornwall, England, set to run from Friday until Sunday. Biden will then travel to Brussels for meetings with members of the NATO mutual defense alliance on June 14, before meeting Putin in the western Swiss city on June 16.

Jun 08 11:48

How Biden's Effort to Weaponise Human Rights Against Russia May Backfire on Washington

While Joe Biden has vowed to "press" Moscow on human rights issues in Geneva, he may be given a dose of his own medicine one day given Washington's record of human rights abuses both at home and abroad, according to economist and author Dr. Paul Craig Roberts.

President Joe Biden has vowed to bring up human rights issues during an upcoming meeting with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on 16 June in Geneva. Commenting on the American president's remarks, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov noted on 31 May that Russia views no topics as taboo and is ready to discuss issues including the prosecution of Americans charged with orchestrating the January 6 riots and the human rights of US opposition activists.

Not Everything in the US Garden is Rosy

Jun 08 11:45

Blinken Says Unaware US Steel Industry Almost Entirely Dependent on Russian Coal

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Monday it was news to him that cheap coal from Russia allegedly undermines the United States' domestic supply and creates a national security threat for the steel industry.

“No, I have to acknowledge this is news to me, not something I focused on, and I very much appreciate you bring it to my attention,” Blinken said when Congressman Dan Meuser asked him whether he was aware that 90 percent of anthracite coal used in the US steel industry come from Russia.

During a US House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing, Meuser described the situation with the coal supply in the United States as a threat to national security.

Meuser said over the past five years Pennsylvania anthracite production shrunk by 20 percent while the total sales of Russia anthracite increased from 6 million tones in 2016 to 22 million tones in 2020, or 12 times higher than the domestic usage in the United States.

Jun 08 11:07

Biden says he will invite Ukrainian president Zelensky to the White House after his Putin summit as GOP slams him for showing 'weakness' to Russians by waiving sanctions on the Nord 2 pipeline

President Joe Biden on Monday invited Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to visit him at the White House after his summit with Vladimir Putin.

The offer was meant to be a boon to the Ukraine as it struggles to fend offer Russian aggression.

Zelensky, in an interview with Axios for HBO, expressed disappointment that Biden decided to stop trying to block the Nord Stream 2, a Russia-to-Germany natural gas pipeline, that would allow the Kremlin to by pass the Ukraine.

Jun 08 10:45

Russia Hits Canada With Mirroring Sanctions: 9 Officials Barred From Country Indefinitely

Russia has hit back at Canada after March 24 sanctions which saw nine Russian officials banned from Canada over "gross and systematic violations of human rights in Russia" related to the Alexey Navalny saga.

At that time senior Russian officials had been accused over "the attempted murder" of Navalny last August, which saw the anti-Putin activist hospitalized in Berlin. Moscow had vowed it would prepare retaliatory sanctions in return, and that moment has come Monday, with the foreign ministry announcing a ban on precisely nine Canadian citizens from indefinitely entering its territory.

Canada has been among multiple countries, including the US and EU, to level sanctions on Moscow in relation to Navalny, who since his return from Germany to Moscow has been serving a couple year stint at a prison outside the Russian capital stemming from a prior embezzlement case.

Jun 08 10:31

Moscow to QUIT International Space Station in 2025 unless Washington lifts restrictive sanctions, says Russian space boss

Moscow will withdraw from the International Space Station project in 2025 if Washington continues to impose sanctions against the Russian space sector, with the country now making significant plans to explore space without the US.

That's according to Dmitry Rogozin, the head of the state space agency Roscosmos, who spoke on Monday to politicians about the frustrations of running the corporation while being sanctioned.

“The ball is in the court of our American partners. If sanctions against the Progress Rocket and Space Center and TsNIIMash remain in place, the issue of Russia's withdrawal from the ISS will be the responsibility of our American partners,” he said.

Jun 08 10:20

The Coming Biden/Putin Train-Wreck Summit

I have my doubts whether the Putin-Biden summit in Geneva will take place later this month, but even if somehow it is pulled off, recent Biden Administration blunders mean the chance anything of substance will be achieved is virtually nil.

The Biden Administration was supposed to signal a return of the “adults” to the room. No more bully Trump telling NATO it’s useless, ripping up international climate treaties, and threatening to remove troops from the Middle East and beyond. US foreign policy would again flourish under the steady, practiced hands of the experts.

Then Biden blurted out in a television interview that President Putin was a killer with no soul. Then US Secretary of State Antony Blinken discovered the hard way that his Chinese counterparts were in no mood to be lectured on an “international rules-based order” that is routinely flouted by Washington.

Jun 08 08:02

Russia's powerful Northern Fleet just got the first of a new class of submarines that has the US Navy worried

  • On May 7, the Russian Navy finally commissioned the Kazan, its first Yasen-M-class nuclear-powered guided missile submarine (SSGN).
  • Kazan is the lead boat of a subclass descended from the Yasen class, the first of which, Severodvinsk, was commissioned in 2013.

Kazan is the culmination of more than a decade of effort to field a new and completely modern SSGN, and it is a marked improvement in nearly every respect over its predecessor, which already had US commanders and their NATO allies worried.

Severodvinsk and Kazan represent a new chapter for Russia's submarine force — long considered the most important part of the Russian Navy.

Jun 08 07:57

Russia to U.S. -Lift sanctions on space sector or we'll exit space station

The head of Russia's space agency on Monday suggested Moscow would withdraw from the International Space Station in 2025 unless Washington lifted sanctions on the space sector that were hampering Russian satellite launches.

Dmitry Rogozin, the head of Roscosmos, was addressing parliamentarians ahead of a summit in Geneva later this month between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his U.S. counterpart Joe Biden.

Rogozin said Moscow was struggling to launch some of its satellites because of U.S. sanctions which meant Russia could not import certain microchip sets needed for its space programme.

"We have more than enough rockets but nothing to launch them with," Rogozin said, in a rare admission by a senior Russian official that Western sanctions are seriously impeding the development of a given industry.

"We have spacecraft that are nearly assembled but they lack one specific microchip set that we have no way of purchasing because of the sanctions."

Jun 08 07:49

German Ambassador Seconds Putin's Fiery NS2 Remarks: "European Energy Policy Not Determined By Foreigners"

he day after Putin announced the completion of the first leg of the Russia-to-Germany natural gas pipeline Nord Stream 2, declaring that essentially Washington's best efforts to halt it via an avalanche of sanctions have been defeated, Germany appears to have seconded his assessment.

German Ambassador to Russia Geza Andreas von Geyr on Saturday in his own statements on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum said that US efforts are illegal, going against international law. As cited in Russian media reports, the ambassador said: "At the moment, important negotiations between the American and German governments are ongoing, which include the topic of Nord Stream 2, but our stance on the matter is clear, and it will not change: we are convinced that the energy security of Europe, as well as European energy policy should be determined by Europeans only, and not by foreigners," he stated confidently

Jun 08 06:18

Russia’s space chief threatens to leave International Space Station program unless U.S. lifts sanctions

Russia’s space chief threatened Monday to withdraw from the International Space Station program if U.S. sanctions against Moscow’s space entities are “not lifted in the near future.”

“If the sanctions against Progress and TsNIIMash remain and are not lifted in the near future, the issue of Russia’s withdrawal from the ISS will be the responsibility of the American partners,” Roscosmos Director General Dmitry Rogozin said during a Russian parliament hearing on Monday, according to an NBC translation.

“Either we work together, in which case the sanctions are lifted immediately, or we will not work together and we will deploy our own station,” he added.

Jun 07 08:38

Russia and China have both warned the United States; Playtime is over

Of course, I have covered the insane level of disinformation, lies, and distortions that are spewed from the American media. I have discussed why and how this has come about, and have provided quite an excessive number of examples. But what this article is about is what is NOT being reported.

If you would tell an American that they are ignorant of the “news” they would laugh in your face. They would respond that that idea is absurd. With the millions of articles being pumped out hourly from the vast American media, in all of it’s forms, of course Americans are “well informed”.

But nope. Americans are not.

Americans are subject to a fire-hose of outright lies, intentional distortions, eye-catching gossip, nonessential tidbits, and fear mongering. It is amazing in it’s size, scope, intensity and diversity.

Jun 07 08:31

Putin Sets Tense Tone Ahead Of Meeting With President Joe Biden

Jun 07 07:50

Russia Mulls Ordering State Firms To Switch To Euro, "Preparing" For Possible Disconnect From SWIFT

Russia's divestment from the Dollar is moving at an astonishing pace...

Jun 07 06:25

NATO meddles in Russia-Belarus affairs to prevent their integration — diplomat

Effective Russian-Belarusian cooperation is not part of NATO’s plans, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova wrote on her Telegram channel, commenting on a statement of NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, who voiced concerns over cooperation between Moscow and Minsk.

"Here is the answer to a question why the West is dealing with Belarus so fiercely. Normal effective cooperation between the two countries is not part of NATO’s plans. It needs to constantly interfere in domestic affairs of one or another country, or to simultaneously meddle in the affairs of both, just to prevent a natural course of mutually beneficial integration.

In comment on NATO’s readiness to "protect each member of the alliance from a threat posed by Moscow and Minsk," the diplomat wished NATO chief good health, noting that this was "directly linked to overcoming old phobias and getting rid of persecution mania."

Jun 07 06:24

Germany insists gas transit via Ukraine be continued after Nord Stream 2 launch

Gas transit via Ukraine must be continued after the commissioning of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, German cabinet’s spokesperson Steffen Seibert said in a commentary published in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung daily.

"It has been of major significance for the German government that Ukraine should retain the status of a gas transit country even after the Nord Stream 2 launch. Having signed a transit contract that was reached with the EU’s and German government’s mediation, Russia and Ukraine outlined the way for that and sent an important signal concerning security of gas supplies to Europe," he stressed. "And we expect that this joint package of agreements will be observed."

Jun 07 06:24

Putin says no breakthroughs expected after meeting with Biden

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that he does not expect any breakthroughs after his meeting with US counterpart Joe Biden, scheduled for June 16 in Geneva, but believes that the two countries have shared interests.

"I do not expect any breakthroughs as a result of that meeting. But I think that in spite of contradictions - but they have not been created by Russia, I would like to mention that - we still have overlapping interests," Putin said at a meeting with heads of the world’s leading news agencies, organized by TASS.

Jun 07 05:27

NATO calls for crunch talks with Russia as Moscow unveils armed forces shakeup in response to military bloc’s activity on borders

Russian army chiefs have been asked to join Western counterparts for discussions on how to de-escalate the tense standoffs on the country’s borders, with NATO’s general secretary calling on Moscow to meet as a matter of urgency.

Jens Stoltenberg told Berlin’s Die Welt that he felt there is a desperate need for constructive dialogue as part of the NATO-Russia Council. The body has not met for 19 months, with Moscow saying it sees little point in talks given current tensions.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

NATO has brought these tensions upon itself, and Russia has not been doing anything other than matching NATO forces, massing on Russia's borders.

Jun 07 04:53

US Actively Prepares for War with Russia

It is quite apparent to everyone that, at present, the socio-economic and political situation in the United States is far from stable and society increasingly polarized. In fact, even members of the current US military and political elite admit this in their public speeches. Hence, President Joe Biden and his team have been trying hard to unite the nation and guide it in a less divisive direction.

Since the relationship between the United States and Russia has taken a turn for the worse in recent years, it is quite clear to the author that, nowadays, the US administration has been seeking confrontation with the Russian Federation, be it over politics, trade or even the construction of Nord Stream 2 (which is of no concern to the US) for the European Union (EU). And President Joe Biden is seemingly trying to achieve this aim by using fairly aggressive and ideologically divisive rhetoric as a tool.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The above-articulated scenarios can best be described with only two words; absolute insanity.

And not to put too fine a point on it, Russia never annexed Crimea. Post-putsch in the Ukraine, when Viktor Yanukovych was replaced by the western-anointed Peter Poroshenko, the people of Crimea held two referendums, which were monitored and observed as free and fair.

First, the Crimean people were asked if they wanted to stay with Ukraine, post putsch, and they voted overwhelmingly to secede.

Then, in a second referendum, theyu were asked if Crimea should join the Russian Federation, and the Crimeans voted to petition the Russian Federation to join, and the Russian Federation accepted that petition.

The US and NATO do not have the weaponry; the troop strength; the money; or the manufacturing to insure a positive outcome to such a war against Russia.

And unfortunately, just because something might be the most ham-fistedly, pig-headedly stupid thing the US government could possibly do, is utterly no guarantee that it won't haul off and do just that.

This is why, in this country, we are most probably coming back to a military draft of both our young men and young women, and this explains the timing of the Supreme Court most probably hearing the case, that a male-only selective service is discriminatory.

Jun 07 04:13

NATO Summit: West To Move China to Back Burner, Russia and Belarus to the Front

The secretary general of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Jens Stoltenberg, gave an online address entitled ”NATO 2030: a transatlantic agenda for the future” at an event co-sponsored by the Brookings Institution and German Council on Foreign Relations on June 4.

As the title of the presentation would indicate, his comments, addressed to organizations to which he and NATO are really beholden (as distinct from transitory, ephemeral entities like governments), were apropos the NATO summit in Brussels which will begin on June 14.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The timing on wanting to drop China as "bad guy in chief", after the Wuhan debacle, was thoroughly predictable, in order to attempt to make people forget the suffering of the last year, both geopolitically induced, and medical, they, or their loved ones, may have endured.

But the reality is, Russia has done absolutely nothing.... to earn these accusations, and NATO leadership knows it.

Jun 07 02:34

US Troops In Iraq Targeted By Increasingly Sophisticated Combat Drones

The thousands of US troops still in Iraq are increasingly monitoring the threat from the skies, as a series of combat drones from an unknown source have reportedly targeted American bases over the past few months, according to a Friday report in The New York Times. The report blames "Iran-backed militia" for deployments of sophisticated small drones, citing the usual anonymous sources.

The following day on Saturday, a new attack on Ain al-Asad Air Base in Iraq was reported: "The air defense system at Ain al-Asad Air Base in Iraq, where American forces are stationed, shot down two drones that attempted to attack the base on Saturday night, according to the Iraqi Security Media Cell."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Yes, one can hear the war drums getting beaten with ever greater fierocity by Team Biden and Israel, particuarly in light of Netanyahu's impending (potential) fall from grace in the next couple of days.

Geopolitically, Netanyahu is a wounded animal; wounded animals are always at their most dangerous.

However, I would like to politely point out that a US war against Iran would most probably translate as a war against both Russia and China right now; is US leadership so thooroughly idiotic, as to believe that such a war could actually be won, given that we don't have the troop strength; weaponry; money; or manufacturing to make that happen?!?

Jun 07 02:18

Putin Says That First Line Of Nord Stream 2 Is Now Complete

Via OilPrice.com,

Russian President Vladimir Putin has announced that laying the pipes for the first of two lines of the prospective Nord Stream 2 pipeline to Germany has now been "successfully completed."

Addressing an economic forum in St. Petersburg on June 4, Putin also said that "work on the second line is continuing."

While the underwater section still needs to be linked to the section on German territory, Russian energy giant Gazprom "is ready to start filing Nord Stream 2 with gas," he added.

Gazprom shares went up 0.6 percent after Putin's comments, reaching 273.80 rubles ($3.74) -- their highest level since mid-2008.

The United States, which has strongly opposed construction of the new Russian pipeline, last month announced new sanctions against Russian companies and ships involved in the project.

But the administration of President Joe Biden decided to waive sanctions against the company overseeing the project and its CEO.

Jun 05 06:13

Pandemic, opposition and US path: what Putin said to heads of news agencies

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday expressed hope that challenges created by the novel coronavirus pandemic would spur countries to remove politically motivated restrictions against each other. The Russian leader also told heads of world news agencies at a meeting organized by TASS that countries should not build partner relations based on the principle of making-friends-against-anyone, adding that "there should be some ethics" in relations between state leaders.

TASS gathered Putin’s main statements made at the meeting.

Causes of the pandemic

"Too many things have already been said on this subject, so it seems to me that making more comments about this would be senseless. I don’t think that I can say something new or compelling."

Role of the pandemic

Jun 05 05:16

Biden’s grounding of Open Skies treaty is folly amid Russian tensions. And it’s a head-scratcher, since his campaign once called Trump’s withdrawal of the Cold War agreement ‘short-sighted.’

The Biden administration had an opportunity to salvage the Treaty on Open Skies (OS), but they have chosen to let it die.

The U.S. had withdrawn from the treaty under the previous administration in November 2020, and there was a chance that Biden could have rejoined it. Last month, the State Department announced that the U.S. would not rejoin the treaty, and the Russian government has taken steps to exit the treaty as well.

The exit of the two largest states from Open Skies marks its demise for all intents and purposes. The decision represents a reversal from Biden’s criticism of Trump’s withdrawal, which he had previously characterized as “short-sighted.” The administration’s bizarre decision to bury the treaty makes it less likely that the U.S. and Russia will be able to make any progress on a new arms control agenda, and it casts a pall over the upcoming Geneva summit on June 16. Arms control experts reacted to Biden’s decision with dismay and bewilderment.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The American comedian Ron White, in his stand-up routine, had a statement which very mucn describes this decision; "You can't fix stupid!!", and this is precisely how this decision on the part of Team Biden, can be succinctly described.

Jun 05 05:11

Belarus, Crimea: Ukraine Prepares for Armed Conflict in North and South

The Ukrainian government has announced that it is shoring up security and military forces in the north of the country on its border with Belarus and to the south on what it calls the administrative border of the territory of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea: the exact language of the government and the armed forces of the nation.

Serhiy Deineko, in charge of the State Border Guard Service, was quoted confirming he’d returned from inspecting the Ukrainian border with Belarus and had identified measures for strengthening protection against alleged Belarusian threats.

In his words: “We need to continue building up the system of protecting the state border with Belarus. This applies to the entire section, including the borders of the exclusion zone…we are further strengthening our technical and engineering capabilities. We must ensure the national security of Ukraine from all possible threats.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

War with Russia, on the part of Ukraine, would be one of the most ham-fistedly, pig-headedly stupid things the US and NATO could do right now; unfortunately, that is utterly no guarantee that they won't just haul off and do it.

Jun 05 04:20

RUSSIA SAYS NATO TO SUPPLY UKRAINE WITH ADVANCED WEAPONS UNDER GUISE OF BLACK SEA DRILLS

SOURCE: ZEROHEDGE
Russia's Defense Ministry has lobbed an explosive accusation at a moment tensions with the West are soaring in the wake of the Belarus Ryanair incident on May 23rd. Spokesman for the ministry, Major General Igor Konashenkov on Wednesday said that NATO is preparing to use upcoming summer Black Sea sea exercises to smuggle tons of weaponry to Ukraine and "extremist" paramilitaries allied with Kiev.

Referencing the annual US-NATO Sea Breeze exercise in the Black Sea region, expected from June 28 through July 10 and including some 4,000 troops, Gen. Konashenkov claimed, "Advanced armaments, munitions and materiel are planned to be delivered precisely to that region for Ukrainian troops under the guise of holding the drills."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Just because something would be the most pig-headedly, ham-fistedly stupid thing the US government could possibly do is, unfortunately, utterly no guarnatee that they won't do it.

I am hoping ( and praying) that Major General Konashenkov is utterly wrong in these accusations; war with Russia right now, would be utterly the most pig-headedly, ham-fistedly stupid thing the US government could do.

We do not have the troop strength; the weaponry; the manufacturing; or the money to successfully wage a conventional war against Russia, which means that it would go nuclear in a heartbeat, and lead to toal anihillation of all life on earth.

Jun 04 05:44

Going for gold: Russia to eliminate US dollar from sovereign wealth fund THIS MONTH amid warning of politics sabotaging currency

Russia’s sovereign wealth fund will take a punt on gold and slash $40 billion of US currency entirely out of its investment portfolio amid growing tensions with Washington, the country’s finance minister announced on Thursday.

Anton Siluanov said that the National Wealth Fund would reduce its share of dollars to zero within the next month. Speaking as part of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, he said that the process would be “fast enough” and would mirror a similar move by the country’s central bank to reduce assets held in American currency.

Under the plans, the proportion of dollars in the fund will fall from 35% to zero, while assets held in euro and the Chinese yuan will increase to 40% and 30%, respectively. The share of the British pound will halve, from 10% to 5%, while the investment vehicle will buy into gold for the first time, with 20% of its assets to be hedged on the precious metal.

Jun 04 05:44

Russia Just Exited The Dollar!

Jun 04 05:34

US Actively Prepares for War with Russia

Since the relationship between the United States and Russia has taken a turn for the worse in recent years, it is quite clear to the author that, nowadays, the US administration has been seeking confrontation with the Russian Federation, be it over politics, trade or even the construction of Nord Stream 2 (which is of no concern to the US) for the European Union (EU). And President Joe Biden is seemingly trying to achieve this aim by using fairly aggressive and ideologically divisive rhetoric as a tool.

Based on a number of reports published by American and Western media outlets, aside from anti-Russia propaganda, the US government has essentially begun its preparations for an invasion of Russia via the Baltic countries, the Black Sea, the Arctic Ocean and regions bordering the Russian Federation to the East.

Jun 03 13:07

Russia's $186 Billion Sovereign Wealth Fund Dumps All Dollar Assets

Following a series of corporate cyberattacks that American intelligence agencies have blamed on Russian actors, Russia's sovereign wealth fund (officially the National Wellbeing Fund) has decided to dump all of its dollars and dollar-denominated assets in favor of those denominated in euros, yuan - or simply buying precious metals like gold, which Russia's central bank has increasingly favored for its own reserves.

Finance Minister Anton Siluanov made the announcement Thursday morning at the annual St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.

"We can make this change rather quickly, within a month," Siluanov told reporters Thursday.

Jun 03 13:03

Russia to Ditch US Dollar?

Russia’s sovereign wealth fund will ditch its holdings in dollars from its $185 Billion Reserve Fund, dramatically increase its holdings of Chinese yuan and invest in gold for the first ever time, Russia’s Finance Ministry said Thursday.

Finance Minister Anton Siluanov told the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) that Russia’s $186-billion national welfare fund (NWF) would completely divest its $41 billion worth of holdings in dollars within a month.

“Today we have about 35% of NWF investments in dollars,” Siluanov said. “We’ve decided to get out of dollar assets completely, replacing investments in dollars with an increase in euros and gold.”

The share of euros in the fund will be increased to 40%, the Chinese yuan will account for 30% and another 20% will be stored in gold.

Jun 03 10:56

Russia's $186 Billion Sovereign Wealth Fund Dumps All Dollar Assets

Following a series of corporate cyberattacks that American intelligence agencies have blamed on Russian actors, Russia's sovereign wealth fund (officially the National Wellbeing Fund) has decided to dump all of its dollars and dollar-denominated assets in favor of those denominated in euros, yuan - or simply buying precious metals like gold, which Russia's central bank has increasingly favored for its own reserves.

Finance Minister Anton Siluanov made the announcement Thursday morning at the annual St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.

"We can make this change rather quickly, within a month,"

Siluanov told reporters Thursday.

Jun 03 10:27

Russia: Pentagon To Use War Games To Smuggle Weapons to Ukrainian Army, Extremist Formations for War in Donbass

Wednesday’s TASS cites Major General Igor Konashenkov, spokesman for the Russian Defense Ministry, warning that the U.S. and NATO will exploit this year’s Sea Breeze military exercise in Ukraine to smuggle advanced weaponry and munitions to the nation’s armed forces and fascistic paramilitaries and mercenaries of the infamous Azov Battalion and similar units. The arms will be used for the ongoing war in the Donbass region.

In Konashenkov’s words: “Advanced armaments, munitions and materiel are planned to be delivered precisely to that region for Ukrainian troops under the guise of holding the drills.

“Eventually, as was the case in previous years, all this weaponry will be delivered to the Ukrainian troops and nationalist formations stationed close to the areas in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions uncontrolled by Kiev.”

Jun 03 06:28

Wait, How Did a Russian Spy Ship Tip Off a U.S. Missile Test?

  • Observers spotted a Russian Navy spy ship loitering off the coast of Kauai, Hawaii.
  • Within days, the Department of Defense announced a ballistic missile intercept test had failed.
  • The Russians were likely alerted to the upcoming test by notices announcing closed air and sea space.
  • Last week, a Russian intelligence collection ship parked just outside U.S. waters was actually there to record data on an upcoming U.S. missile test, according to a new report.

    One possibility is espionage. During the Cold War, Soviet spy ships were eerily good at predicting upcoming secret missile tests. But in this case, the more likely explanation is Russia carefully read Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) and Notice to Mariners (NOMAR/HYDROPAC) bulletins.

    Jun 03 05:28

    Customs Officers Seize Rolls-Royce For Outlawed Aftermarket Interior

    Italy’s custom department discovered the luxury vehicle's cabin had been upholstered with crocodile leather.

    In the world of luxury vehicles, everyone is trying to be the best of the best with the most exclusive trims and materials. Designers and automakers go to all ends, modifying their masterpieces with top-dollar finishes. But sometimes, being exclusive can get you in trouble. That’s what happened to a Rolls-Royce Phantom in Italy.

    There’s a thin line between being rare and doing illegal mods, and especially when it involves compromising the life of an endangered species. Italy's Customs officials released images of a Rolls-Royce imported from Russia that was recently seized by the country’s foreign department

    Jun 03 05:25

    Cold War Over EU Skies: Germany Blocks All Inbound Russian Flights In Huge Escalation

    Here we go again in the latest tit-for-tat escalation following the May 23rd forced diversion of the Ryanair flight carrying anti-Lukashenko activist and journalist Roman Pratasevich by Belarus, who was subsequently arrested when the plane landed in Minsk: Russia and Germany have just denied each others' airlines permission for incoming flights.

    AFP is confirming that "Germany has blocked flights operated by Russian airlines from arriving in its territory in tit-for-tat action after Moscow failed to provide authorizations for Lufthansa, the transport ministry said Wednesday, amid tensions over Belarus."

    Jun 02 10:43

    Russia Again Warns SWIFT Disconnection A Real Possibility In "Sanctions Spiral"

    Russia is again warning of the impending threat of the West blocking its banks from using the SWIFT payment system amid a broad "spiral of sanctions" - in the words of director of the Economic Cooperation Department (DEC) of the Russian Foreign Ministry Dmitry Birichevsky.

    "It's no secret that there are threats, primarily from the United States, to disconnect Russia from the SWIFT system," he described in Monday statements to a national broadcaster. It's certainly not the first time that Western allies have threatened such. The threat to cut off Russia from the global system for financial messaging and cross-border payments which acts as the protector of the dollar reserve system has lingered for the past half-decade, going back to the initial Crimea crisis and the start of war in eastern Ukraine, and recently repeated in an EU resolution.

    Jun 02 10:27

    Russian spacewalkers prepare for arrival of new space station lab module

    Two cosmonauts floated outside the International Space Station early Wednesday to wrap up preparations for detaching the two-decades-old Pirs airlock and docking compartment next month, clearing the way for the long-planned arrival of a new laboratory module.

    Oleg Novitskiy and Pyotr Dubrov, opened the hatch of the Poisk module at 1:53 a.m. EDT to officially kick off the 238th spacewalk devoted to station assembly and maintenance, the sixth excursion so far this year and the first for both cosmonauts.

    Over the course of a seven-hour 19-minute outing, the cosmonauts first removed and replaced a failed component on the Zarya module; repositioned an extendable boom that was tethered to Pirs; unplugged Pirs docking port rendezvous antenna cables and temporarily attached them to the Zvezda module on the other side of the docking interface.

    Jun 02 07:30

    Closest Hostile Military Presence Since World War II: US Troops Permanently Stationed Only 6-9 Miles From Belarus Border: Foreign Minister

    The foreign minister of Belarus, Vladimir Makei, recently told the Russian newspaper Kommersant that the threat of a new cold – and behind that a hot – war appeared to be confronting his nation, its region and the world. The following is a representative excerpt from his interview:

    “Observing the development of the situation in our region and in the world in general, given the growing confrontation in all directions, we can say that we are heading towards the ‘Cold War 2.0?. If we continue exchanging accusations against each other, the accusations that are really destructive, like the ones made by President Biden, we can assume that this way we will be one step away from a hot war.”

    Jun 02 05:33

    Nobody wants to soften Putin-Biden summit agenda, Kremlin spokesman says

    The Kremlin believes it is important to make sure that Presidents Vladimir Putin of Russia and Joe Biden of the United States hold their much-awaited summit but there are no plans to soften the meeting’s agenda, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.

    "Naturally, nobody wants to soften the agenda in the run-up to the summit. We think that it is still very important that this summit takes place," he pointed out.

    Peskov emphasized that preparations for the summit were still underway. However, he declined to comment on a statement by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov who had said that Washington was going to receive a number of "uncomfortable signals" from Moscow in the coming days. "This requires a request to the Foreign Ministry," the Kremlin spokesman clarified.

    Jun 02 05:32

    Ukraine in top 3 of world’s child porn suppliers, Prosecutor General says

    Ukraine is currently in top 3 largest suppliers of child porn in the world, Prosecutor General Irina Venediktova said during a meeting Tuesday.

    "According to the Internet Watch Foundation, Ukraine is among top-3 suppliers of child porn in the world. Shame," Venediktova said.

    According to the official, in 2020 and 2021, the police revealed about 300 facts of child porn dissemination.

    "Every week, 5,000 devices upload this kind of porn," the prosecutor added.

    She also noted that sexual violence against children is on the rise. According to Venediktova, in the majority of cases, sexual violence is carried out by people from children’s inner circle, and by relatives in 30% of all cases.

    Earlier, the Verkovna Rada tightened the punishment for production, dissemination and sale of child porn. Now, these crimes carry between 8 and 12 years in prison.

    Jun 02 05:31

    Current relationship between Russia & US is, in some ways, worse than during Cuban Missile Crisis, says former President Medvedev

    Today's relationship between Moscow and Washington is, in some respects, worse than the most challenging moments of the Cold War, because the US believes that Russia is declining and doesn't see it as a force to be reckoned with.

    That's according to former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, who currently serves as deputy chairman of the country's Security Council.

    “I'm not talking about a situation like the Cuban Missile Crisis, when everything was hanging by a thread at all,” he told Moscow daily Kommersant, in comments published on Tuesday. “But in some ways, the current situation is worse. And it is worse because our partners assume that Russia can be neglected.”

    The former president noted that, in the past, the US believed that the Soviet Union was not a friend, but an adversary to be taken seriously.

    Jun 02 05:30

    Russia's top security chief sends stern warning: Moscow willing to use real force against foreign adversaries, not just sanctions

    Just two weeks after Russian President Vladimir Putin revealed the country would “knock out the teeth” of any aggressors, the Security Council secretary has warned that unfriendly actions against Moscow may be met with force.

    Speaking to newspaper Rossiyskaya Gazeta in an interview published on Monday, Nikolay Patrushev revealed that the country’s revised national security strategy means Moscow is now willing to use actual force and not just economic sanctions.

    “The new version of the National Security Strategy emphasizes Russia's desire to increase predictability, confidence, and security in the international sphere,” Patrushev explained.

    “At the same time, it notes the legitimacy of symmetric and asymmetric measures to suppress and prevent unfriendly actions that threaten the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Russia.”

    Jun 02 05:03

    Pentagon Warns Middle East Countries Against Security Cooperation With Russia, China

    A senior Pentagon official on Tuesday warned that Middle Eastern countries that test waters of deeper security cooperation with China or Russia put at risk their partnerships with the United States.

    “It’s... clear that certain countries and partners would want to hedge and test what more they might be able to get from the United States by testing the waters of deeper cooperation with the Chinese or the Russians, particularly in the security and military space,” Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Dana Stroul said during a webinar at the Middle East Institute. “And I would just caution them again that there is a point that it will tip into the strategies that will not only threaten your partnership with the United States but will actually threaten your national sovereignty in countries like Lebanon.”

    Stroul claimed that the potential benefits of cooperation with Russia and China pale in comparison with what the United States can offer in terms of security cooperation.

    Jun 01 09:01

    Air France cancels flights as Russia withholds clearance

    Air France (AIRF.PA) cancelled two more flights to Moscow on Monday after Russian authorities failed to approve flight plans that avoid Belarus airspace.

    The European Union has urged its airlines to avoid Belarus amid outrage over the forced landing of a Ryanair (RYA.I) jet en route to Lithuania from Greece on May 23 and the arrest of a dissident journalist on board.

    "Air France confirms the cancellation of flights AF1154 and AF1654 from Paris-Charles de Gaulle to Moscow on 31 May 2021 as the authorisations from Russian authorities to enter their territory have not been granted," the airline said.

    The French airline, part of the broader Air France-KLM group, was forced to cancel two Paris-Moscow flights last week after receiving no Russian clearance for flight plans skirting the territory.

    Obstacles to rerouted Air France flights appeared to have been resolved late last week, allowing Air France to carry out two weekend Paris-Moscow services. read more

    Jun 01 08:31

    EU Seeks to Bribe Belarusians With €3 Billion Promise If They Topple Europe’s Most Liberal Leader

    EU chief Ursula von der Leyen on Friday warned Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko “it is time to change course” as her executive held out the promise of a three-billion-euro support package if he leaves power.

    The European Commission president said the EU’s message was twofold: one of support to the Belarusian people — and a warning to Lukashenko.

    “No amount of repression, brutality or coercion will bring any legitimacy to your authoritarian regime. So far, you have blatantly ignored the democratic choice of the Belarusian people. It is time to change course,” she said. [Big words for an unelected lockdown fascist.]

    “When — and we believe it is a case of when, not if — Belarus starts its peaceful democratic transition, the EU will be there to accompany it.”

    May 31 13:02

    Missile Defense Test Fails off Kauai Following Appearance by Russian Spy Ship

    A U.S. missile defense test that likely was the one delayed off Kauai earlier this week due to the presence of a Russian surveillance ship was carried out today with a salvo of SM-6 ship-fired missiles failing to intercept a medium-range ballistic missile target.

    The Missile Defense Agency, in cooperation with the U.S. Navy, said it conducted what it called Flight Test Aegis Weapon System 31.

    "The objective of the test was to demonstrate the capability of ballistic missile defense (BMD )-configured Aegis ship to detect, track, engage and intercept a medium-range ballistic missile target with a salvo of two Standard Missile-6 Dual II (BMD-initialized ) missiles. However, an intercept was not achieved, " the agency said in a news release.

    Program officials have initiated an "extensive review " to determine the cause of any problems which may have prevented a successful intercept, the agency added.

    May 31 06:33

    Russian LGBT Network in court as Saint Petersburg prosecutors demand its Facebook page be blocked for 'negative impact' on kids

    Prosecutors in Russia have demanded that Facebook block the page of the Russian LGBT Network, with the authorities alleging that it harms the development and health of minors. The profile is followed by over 5,000 people.

    The initial complaint was filed by MP Igor Sapko, the former mayor of Perm and a representative of the ruling United Russia party, who said that “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relationships is becoming mainstream on many Internet platforms.”

    According to the prosecutors, the group creates “an attractive image of homosexuality, leading to the involvement of citizens, especially teenagers, in destructive lifestyles.”

    May 31 06:00

    How Story of Broken NATO Non-Enlargement Pledge Upends West's Effort to Depict Russia as 'Aggressor'

    NATO non-enlargement promises to Soviet leaders following the fall of the Berlin Wall have again prompted a debate in the media. What's behind the timing of the Western media's renewed attempt to downplay the famous "not one inch eastward" assurance as a myth?

    Earlier this month two reports emerged concerning the "myth" of NATO's post-Cold War non-enlargement guarantees given to Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and his entourage in 1989-91.

    The first one, published by the London-based think tank Chatham House on 13 May claimed that "the USSR was never offered a formal guarantee on the limits of NATO expansion post-1990" listing it as one of multiple "myths" in the debate on Russia.

    May 30 06:16

    Why EU Report Calling for Regime Change in Russia is Last Ditch Effort to Save the Bloc's Relevance

    Earlier this month, EU foreign policymakers issued a draft report on the direction of the bloc's political relations with Russia. The document does not see Russia as an equal partner with the West and "legitimises" the EU to interfere in the country's domestic affairs and overhaul its political system, notes Norwegian Professor Glenn Diesen.

    An EU document compiled by MEP Andrius Kubilius, a former prime minister of Lithuania, declares Russia a "threat" and calls for deterring it through different means, including Russia's expulsion from the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT), halting the Nord Stream 2 project, and stepping up sanctions against the country. It specifically targets the Russian government, proposing to launch international probes and trials against it as well as setting up "EU tribunals".

    May 29 06:28

    Emergencies Ministry Plane With Russians Evacuated From Gaza Departs Cairo, Embassy Says

    A Russian Emergencies Ministry plane carrying 64 Russian citizens evacuated from the Gaza Strip departed Cairo for Moscow, the Russian Embassy in Cairo told Sputnik.

    Russian citizens, mostly women and children, arrived from the Gaza Strip on Wednesday evening at Cairo International Airport. From the border with the enclave, they were accompanied by employees of the Russian embassy in Egypt, who also provided them with assistance at the airport.

    "We are sincerely grateful to the Egyptian authorities for their responsive attitude to the appeal regarding taking Russian citizens through Egyptian territory and the comprehensive assistance provided. This again confirms the high level of mutual understanding and cooperation between our countries," the Russian Embassy wrote on its Facebook page.
    On May 20, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed an order on the evacuation of Russian and CIS citizens from the Gaza Strip at their request.

    May 28 10:36

    ???????Russian Spy Ship Quietly Parked In Waters Off Hawaii

    A Russian Navy surveillance ship parked in international waters off Kauai, an island in the Central Pacific, part of the Hawaiian archipelago, has delayed a Missile Defense Agency missile test, according to Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

    The US Pacific Fleet confirmed Wednesday that it "is aware of the Russian vessel operating in international waters in the vicinity of Hawaii, and will continue to track it through the duration of its time here."

    The ship has been operating in international waters just 13 nautical miles west of Kauai for several days. The vessel is not broadcasting an automatic identification system signal.

    "Through maritime patrol aircraft, surface ships and joint capabilities, we can closely monitor all vessels in the Indo-Pacific area of operations," US Pacific Fleet's statement continued.

    May 28 06:15

    US Tells Russia It Won’t Rejoin Open Skies

    The Biden administration has informed Russia that the US will not rejoin the Open Skies Treaty, an arms control agreement that allows unarmed surveillance flights over participating countries.

    The Trump administration withdrew from the treaty last year. Russia had been attempting to salvage it, but the Biden administration’s decision appears to be the final nail in the coffin for Open Skies.

    Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman informed Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov of the US decision on Thursday.

    As a candidate, President Biden slammed the Trump administration’s decision to withdraw from the treaty. In May 2020, Biden released a statement that said a US withdrawal from Open Skies would “exacerbate growing tensions between the West and Russia, and increase the risks of miscalculation and conflict.”

    Webmaster's Commentary: 

    Yet another Bidenesque flip-flop, that leaves the people of both Russia and the US less safe; bravo, sir, way to GO!!!!!

    May 28 05:40

    ???????Russian Spy Ship Quietly Parked In Waters Off Hawaii

    A Russian Navy surveillance ship parked in international waters off Kauai, an island in the Central Pacific, part of the Hawaiian archipelago, has delayed a Missile Defense Agency missile test, according to Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

    The US Pacific Fleet confirmed Wednesday that it "is aware of the Russian vessel operating in international waters in the vicinity of Hawaii, and will continue to track it through the duration of its time here."

    The ship has been operating in international waters just 13 nautical miles west of Kauai for several days. The vessel is not broadcasting an automatic identification system signal.

    U.S. Naval Institute News first identified the presence of the spy ship, indicating it was a Russian Navy Vishnya-class auxiliary general intelligence (AGI) ship Kareliya (SSV-535). Honolulu Star-Advertiser then expanded on this and said the vessel is in the vicinity of the Pacific Missile Range and has "delayed" a missile test.

    Webmaster's Commentary: 

    If it is, in fact, in international waters, according to sea treaties, there is nothing the US government can really do about its presence there.

    But one has to wonder; what kind of intel might its sophisticated tracking equipment picking up, and how will that be used against US military assets in the future?!?

    May 27 16:00

    Biden Attacked Trump for Withdrawing from Open Skies Treaty, Now He Tells Russia U.S. Won’t Rejoin

    Last May, when President Trump announced a decision to withdraw from the Open Skies Treaty, candidate Joe Biden blasted the decision, claiming Trump had, “doubled down on his short-sighted policy of going it alone and abandoning American leadership.” Yet ahead of a summit with Vladimir Putin next month, the Biden administration has informed Russia that it has no intention of rejoining the agreement.

    The Trump administration withdrew from the agreement, which started in 2002 as a way for dozens of countries to freely conduct surveillance flights over each other’s territory. When Trump decided to withdraw, noting that Russia was not abiding by its commitments under the treaty, Democrats responded in high dungeon.

    May 27 13:17

    Armenia, Ukraine Lessons Shape New US Cyber/EW Unit

    WASHINGTON: The Army’s year-old Cyber Warfare Support Battalion has “fully fielded” the first of 12 Expeditionary Cyber Teams, the head of Army Cyber Command said today.

    “We’re going to get the first ECT out this summer [to] run it through its paces,” Lt. Gen. Stephen Fogarty told the Association of Old Crows CEMA conference. “We’re going to try out a series of ideas that we had” in the field.

    “Much of it is has been influenced by the lessons-learned” from recent conflicts, he said, especially the Azerbaijan-Armenia war over Nagorno-Karabakh.

    May 27 09:24

    Right On Cue, Russian Tu-22M3 Bombers Now Flying From Syria Brandish Anti-Ship Missiles

    The Russian Ministry of Defense has released new video and photos showing the current deployment of three Tu-22M3 Backfire-C swing-wing bombers to Khmeimim airbase in Syria, the story of which we were first to report on Monday and followed up on a day later with additional details. Now, as we expected, one of the jets has appeared toting a single example of the enormous Kh-22 series standoff missile. Known in the West as the AS-4 Kitchen, the weapon is now primarily used for anti-shipping strike, in keeping with the maritime mission that Moscow has said the Backfires will undertake while in Syria.

    May 27 07:34

    Hunter Biden’s Ukraine salary was cut two months after Joe Biden left office

    The Ukrainian energy company that was paying President Biden’s son Hunter $1 million a year cut his monthly compensation in half two months after his father ceased to be vice president.

    From May 2014, Burisma Holdings Ltd. was paying Hunter $83,333 a month to sit on its board, invoices on his abandoned laptop show.

    But in an email on March 19, 2017, Burisma executive Vadym Pozharskyi asked Hunter to sign a new director’s agreement and informed him “the only thing that was amended is the compensation rate.”

    “We are very much interested in working closely together, and the remuneration is still the highest in the company and higher than the standard director’s monthly fees. I am sure you will find it both fair and reasonable.”

    May 27 06:08

    Jailed Belarusian activist Protasevich spent Donbass War with Neo-Nazi Azov Battalion, but was it as a soldier or journalist?

    Belarusian activist Roman Protasevich, who was arrested by police after his Ryanair flight was forced to land in Minsk, once served alongside the neo-Nazi, far-right Azov Battalion during the Donbass war, and was even wounded.

    That’s according to multiple sources, who have revealed that the Belarusian spent a long time with the Ukrainian militia. However, there is some debate about his role with the battalion, with some believing he was just a volunteer journalist, and others suggesting he was involved in fighting.

    According to the first head of the regiment, writing on his Telegram channel on Tuesday, Protasevich “fought against the occupation of Ukraine together with Azov and other military units.”

    May 25 05:42

    Russia Gives Google 24 Hour Ultimatum to Remove Banned Content

    Russia’s internet regulator has threatened to slow down Google services in Russia if it does not comply with requests to delete content within 24 hours, Russia's state-run TASS news agency has reported.

    The federal communications watchdog Roskomnadzor said Monday that Google had failed to remove 20-30% of links to content which it says are prohibited in Russia — a controversial category which includes content promoting drug use and featuring child pornography, as well as posts Russia says encourage under-18s to attend unauthorized protests.

    May 24 09:31

    Belarus accused of ‘hijacking’ Ryanair flight diverted to arrest blogger

    Belarus has been accused of hijacking a European jetliner and engaging in an act of state terrorism when it forced a Ryanair flight to perform an emergency landing in Minsk after a bomb threat and arrested an opposition blogger critical of authoritarian president Alexander Lukashenko.

    Roman Protasevich, a former editor of the influential Telegram channels Nexta and Nexta Live, was detained by police after his flight was diverted to Minsk national airport. Minsk confirmed that Lukashenko ordered his military to scramble a Mig-29 fighter to escort the plane.

    The Polish prime minister, Mateusz Morawiecki, said the plane had been “hijacked” and accused Lukashenko of a “reprehensible act of state terrorism”. He said he would demand new sanctions against Belarus at a European Council meeting scheduled for Monday.

    May 24 06:32

    Live Updates: EU Threatens Belarus With Reprisals After Ryanair Flight's Emergency Landing in Minsk

    Earlier on Sunday, the flight from Athens to Vilnius – on which Belarusian opposition blogger Protasevich was travelling – was ordered to make an emergency landing in Minsk due to a bomb threat, which was subsequently announced as a hoax.

    A Ryanair flight from Athens to Vilnius that made an emergency landing in Minsk following a bomb scare on Sunday has left Belarus for Lithuania.

    The incident has triggered a wave of criticism from European leaders, who accused the Belarusian authorities of meddling with the European Union's civil aviation. NATO said diverting the flight was "serious and dangerous," while the European Union stated that "such an act cannot be left unanswered.”

    After the plane with more than 120 people onboard touched down in Belarus, the passengers were taken to the transit zone in Minsk Airport and their luggage was searched for possible explosives. However, nothing suspicious was found.

    May 24 06:29

    ‘Very business-like’: Top US diplomat acknowledges stable relations with Russia would be ‘good’ for world

    Better relations between Moscow and Washington would benefit them both, together with the rest of the world, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has admitted, adding that the US would never hesitate to “defend its interests.”

    “A more stable, predictable relationship with them [Russia], I think, would be good for us [the US], good for them, and I’d even argue good for the world,” Blinken told CNN's Fareed Zakaria GPS on Sunday following his recent talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

    The secretary of state lauded the talks with the Russian top diplomat as a “constructive, very business-like conversation,” adding that he made it clear that Washington “would prefer to have a more stable, predictable relationship with Russia.”

    May 24 05:33

    US Secretary of State Blinken leads condemnation of Belarus President Lukashenko after forcing passenger plane to land and arresting journalist as it is claimed KGB agents were on board and MiG-29 'threatened to shoot flight down' 

    Webmaster's Commentary: 

    Please curb your "faux outrage", Mr. Secretary; it is obvious to anyone with more than two brain cells to rub together, that you represent the self-same government which has Julius Assange rotting in jail in Belmarsh for having told Americans and the world about how the political class in this country behaves, and would have done the same thing to Edward Snowden, if he had been so stupid as to have remained in the US.

    May 24 03:57

    How To Possibly Start A War With Russia: Let Ukraine Join NATO

    During a meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy recently, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the U.S. was, “actively looking at” strengthening security cooperation with Ukraine. In Washington, White House spokesman Karine Jean-Pierre, asked if Ukraine would be invited into NATO, said the U.S. is “committed to ensuring that NATO’s door remains open to aspirants.” Ukraine, however, is not a U.S. ally, is not a member of NATO, and Washington should stop pretending they are.

    Being clear on that point could keep us out of an unwanted, unnecessary, and destructive war with Russia.

    May 22 07:17

    Largest US Naval Exercise In A Generation Will Prepare For "Future Conflict With China Or Russia"

    The Pentagon has unveiled what's being described as "the biggest US naval exercise in a generation" to be held in late summer and which will simulate readiness for a future "possible conflict with China or Russia," according to a new report in Military.com.

    Expected to include 25,000 sailors and Marines, it comes amid a broader shift in Pentagon strategy which seeks readiness for 'great power conflict' as opposed the more limited nature of 'war on terror' missions which has defined the last two decades.

    Webmaster's Commentary: 

    what about creating a foreign policy which encourages brisk trade, education of its people to be able to compete in the 21st century, and finding areas and energies in which cooperation might be possible, and have a good outcome?!?

    These war games..... are a potent signal of an empire in deep decline, not in deep, forward thinking policy toward its perceived rivals.

    May 22 07:05

    US Hits Russian Entities With More Nord Stream 2 Sanctions After Removing Them For German Side

    In the continuing saga of contradictory US efforts to thwart the Russia to Germany natural gas pipeline Nord Stream 2, the US Treasury on Friday hit Russia with more sanctions - specifically announcing that three more Russian entities and 13 vessels will come under sanction for their work on the project.

    "Among the sanctioned vessels are the Akademik Cherskiy, the Vladislav Strizhov, the Yury Topchev and the Baltiyskiy Issledovatel, along with others," Treasury announced. "The sanctioned companies are Russia's Marine Rescue Service, Mortransservice, and the Samara Heat and Energy Property Fund."

    Webmaster's Commentary: 

    Apparently, Team Biden,is pathologically incapable of creating a foreign policy that makes any sense whatsoever.

    May 22 06:09

    Largest US Naval Exercise In A Generation Will Prepare For "Future Conflict With China Or Russia"

    The Pentagon has unveiled what's being described as "the biggest US naval exercise in a generation" to be held in late summer and which will simulate readiness for a future "possible conflict with China or Russia," according to a new report in Military.com.

    Expected to include 25,000 sailors and Marines, it comes amid a broader shift in Pentagon strategy which seeks readiness for 'great power conflict' as opposed the more limited nature of 'war on terror' missions which has defined the last two decades.

    May 21 06:43

    You Fools, Rosatom Will Build Nuclear Reactors in China Instead!

    China launched construction on four nuclear reactors made with Russian technology in a project symbolizing the tight bond between the two countries.

    Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin joined the groundbreaking ceremonies via video conference on Wednesday. The two sides first agreed to the nuclear project in 2018.

    Pervading the occasion was Russia and China’s desire to play up their close cooperation in the face of pressure from the U.S. and its allies.

    The nuclear project adds two reactors each to Tianwan Nuclear Power Plant in Jiangsu Province and Xudapu Nuclear Plant in Liaoning Province. Operations are set to begin between 2026 and 2028, according to the agreement. The cost of construction is an estimated $1.7 billion at each site.

    The reactors will be powered by third-generation pressurized water reactor technology supplied by Russian nuclear company Rosatom.

    May 21 06:38

    Episode 19. Su-30SM. With a stroke of the wing

    SU-30 FLANKER BEATS OUT F-22 AND F-15 IN SIMULATED COMBAT! SEE AT 16 MINUTE MARK.

    May 21 06:00

    The Tightening Of The NATO Noose

    NATO’s military noose round Russia’s borders is being tightened in order to force Moscow to react to surging provocation...

    May 21 05:59

    U.S. And Its Allies Try to Split the World in Two

    America’s response to the increasing economic success of China and other nations that until recent decades were impoverished former colonies is to organize its own allies — especially the English-speaking countries — to become a totally separate global economic trading and military alliance standing against that “third world” — and thereby force all non-aligned nations to have to either choose to be allied with the United States or else become conquered by the U.S. and its allies. It’s “Us,” or “Them,” all the way. The top “enemies” (the “Them”) are the same countries that America and its allies were against during the anti-communist Cold War, Russia and China, even though Russia is no longer communist, and China has become a mixture between communism and capitalism.

    America has on its side Saudi Arabia, Israel, Qatar, UAE, and all four of the fascist nations during World War II: Germany, Japan, Italy, and Spain — as well as many other nations.

    May 20 13:30

    Putin Warns Enemy States In Rare Bellicose Speech: "Will Knock Their Teeth Out"

    Coming off the recently renewed 'Ukraine crisis' - which was calmed only after late last month Russia ordered its tens of thousands of additional forces built up in Crimea and near Donbass back to their home bases - Vladimir Putin gave a rare bellicose speech to a meeting of top Russian officials wherein he warned the West and "foreign foes" that Moscow would "knock their teeth out" if they attempt to peel away pieces of Russia's huge territory.

    “In all times, the same thing happened: once Russia grew stronger, they found pretexts to hamper its development," Putin said. He didn't name specific 'enemy' countries, but it came in the context of the Russian leader discussing wars over resources, and the country's ability to look out for itself and its own population first.

    May 20 10:28

    US may lift anti-Russia sanctions

    May 20 09:38

    US-Russia showdown looms as top diplomats meet in Iceland

    Top diplomats from the United States and Russia are set to square off this week in Iceland for their first face-to-face encounter that comes as ties between the nations have deteriorated sharply in recent months.

    U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russia’s longtime Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov plan to talk Wednesday on the sidelines of an Arctic Council meeting in the Icelandic capital of Reykjavik, a city with deep history in U.S.-Russian relations.

    Even before the talks — that are ostensibly to prepare for a summit between President Joe Biden and Russian leader Vladimir Putin next month — the two diplomats laid down near diametrically opposed positions for the meeting, previewing what is likely to be a difficult and contentious exchange.

    May 20 08:46

    Biden Administration Not Willing to Compromise Its Relationship With Germany Over Nord Stream 2

    The Biden administration will waive sanctions on the corporate entity and CEO overseeing the construction of Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline into Germany, according to two sources briefed on the decision.

    Why it matters: The decision indicates the Biden administration is not willing to compromise its relationship with Germany over this pipeline, and it underscores the difficulties President Biden faces in matching actions to rhetoric on a tougher approach to Russia.

    Driving the news: The State Department will imminently send its mandatory 90-day report to Congress listing entities involved in Nord Stream 2 that deserve sanctions. Sources familiar with the drafting of the report tell Axios the State Department plans to call for sanctions against a handful of Russian ships.

    Webmaster's Commentary: 

    This from the same White House that killed the Keystone XL pipeline!

    May 20 08:16

    Putin orders plan for evacuation of Russians from Gaza as Moscow warns Israel that more civilian casualties are ‘unacceptable’

    Russia is preparing for a potential mission to rescue its own citizens, and those of former Soviet states, from war-torn Gaza as Israeli forces press ahead with a campaign of airstrikes aimed at Palestinian militants.

    In an executive order issued on Thursday, President Vladimir Putin instructed the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, along with its top intelligence agency, the SVR, and emergency response officials to lay the groundwork for an evacuation of any citizens or personnel trapped by the fighting. The move, which the president described as a response to a “sharp deterioration in the situation in Gaza,” would also offer a potential lifeline to passport holders from the Commonwealth of Independent States, comprised of nine of the USSR’s ex-republics.

    May 20 02:19

    Blinken Accuses Russia Of Making "Unlawful" Claims In The Arctic

    Authored by Dave DeCamp via AntiWar.com,

    Secretary of State Antony Blinken accused Russia of making "unlawful" claims in the Arctic, a region that the US military is increasingly focused on. Blinken made the comments from Iceland, where he is set to meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov later this week for the first high-level in-person meeting between US and Russian officials of the Biden administration.

    "We’ve seen Russia advance unlawful maritime claims, particularly its regulation of foreign vessels transiting the Northern Sea Route, which are inconsistent with international law. And that is something that we have and will respond to," Blinken said at a joint press conference with Iceland’s foreign minister.

    Webmaster's Commentary: 

    WHAT "unlawful maritime claims", please, Secretary Blinken?!? This incoherently vague language sounds like you have nothing substantial about which to gripe, and just want to make Russia look bad on the world stage.

    Because unless you can enumerate these articulately to both the American people and the world, YOU, SIR, HAVE NOT ONE LEG UPON WHICH TO STAND.

    May 19 12:54

    Biden clears way for Russian pipeline after blocking Keystone Pipeline in US

    The Biden administration will waive sanctions on the corporation and CEO overseeing the Nordsteam 2 pipeline construction, a source familiar tells Fox Business.

    But at the same time, the State Department is expected to send its 90-day report to Congress listing entities involved in the pipeline’s construction that deserve sanctions. The State Department will acknowledge that the corporate entity in charge of the project, Nord Stream 2 AG and its CEO, the Putin crony and former East German intelligence officer Matthias Warnig, are engaged in sanctionable activity, according to Axios, which first reported the news.

    The Nord Stream 2 deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin's regime will transfer Russian gas to Germany via a pipeline running under the Baltic Sea. If completed, this new pipeline would double the amount of natural gas Russia transports directly to Europe and hand an enormous geopolitical victory to Vladimir Putin.

    May 18 07:20

    Putin's military base at the far North revealed: Moscow tells the West 'this is our land' and reveals huge complex that can operate nuclear bombers and bristles with missiles and radar

    • The Nagurskoye airbase in the Franz Josef Land archipelago was built in the Cold War as a weather station
    • It has now been heavily militarised with missiles, a radar system and a runway handling nuclear bombers
    • It comes amid increasing tensions in the Arctic with global competition for the oil and gas rich area

    Russia is building up its military in a remote Arctic airbase prime with missiles, radar and a runway as the Kremlin seeks to assert its dominance in the disputed oil-rich area which it declared this week it 'our land'.

    The Nagurskoye airbase in the Franz Josef Land archipelago was built in the 1950s as a weather station and communications outpost between the Eurasian mainland and the North Pole.

    It was previously a home for polar bears with temperatures plunging to minus 42 Celsius in winter, and snow only disappearing from August to mid-September.

    May 18 06:41

    Russian Aerospace Forces get a new radar that could strip US military of its trump card

    The Yenisei radar is equipped with remote-control stations, which allows it to effectively deal with jamming. For instance, the US Air Force has been so successful in many local conflicts because in almost every case, the air-defense systems employed by America’s opponents were neutralized by powerful and well-organized jamming systems.

    They wouldn’t derail the Yenisei though. That’s because it traces and assigns targets with higher precision when countering powerful jamming. It is safe to assume that by accepting Yenisei into service, the Russian Aerospace Forces have removed the Americans’ tactical advantage.

    Another key Yenisei feature is its sector-scanning capabilities (most radars can only do circular scans). This makes it possible for the radar to trace and assign ballistic missiles.

    May 18 05:39

    Chinese and Russian Military Leaders Laugh... U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) Hosts "Game Changing" Diversity and Inclusion Training

    Diversity is just another word for less white people.

    Somehow, our military’s devotion to eradicating the number of white males involved in TRADOC will make us safer, more secure, and a greater beacon for democracy. [TRADOC hosts ‘game changing’ diversity and inclusion training, Army.Mil, May 5, 2021]:

    The U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command’s diversity office provided training necessary to effectively advise commanders in areas of diversity and inclusion, and to make a better, more inclusive workplace for everyone.

    The training, called the “Game Changer” training, was hosted April 26-30 here at Jacobs Conference Center for Army equal opportunity advisors.

    May 17 10:09

    42% of Russians do not want to be vaccinated against Covid-19 ‘under ANY circumstances,’ even to enable travel abroad, says survey

    A Russian survey has revealed that more than two-fifths (42%) of citizens do not intend to be vaccinated against Covid-19 “under any circumstances,” a result that may explain the country's poorly performing inoculation program.

    May 17 07:44

    Black Sea Fleet starts monitoring British patrol ship - defense ministry

    Russia’s Black Sea Fleet has started tracking the British Royal Navy’s HMS Trent patrol vessel, the Russian Defense Ministry’s National Defense Management Center reported on Sunday.

    "The forces and means of the Black Sea Fleet have started tracking the activities of the Trent patrol vessel of the British Navy, which entered the Black Sea waters on May 16," the statement said.

    On May 11, the report said the Black Sea Fleet started keeping a close eye on the French Navy’s patrol ship Commandant Birot, which had entered the Black Sea.

    May 16 05:43

    NATO pontiff cites Scripture for holy war against Russia and China

    The North Atlantic prelate alluded to the story of Jesus’ multiplication of the fish and loaves in the four Gospels that is referred to as the Feeding of the 5,000, stating, with a quote from it, “The theme of this year’s conference is ‘schaut hin‘ – go and see….”

    NATO didn’t record whether anyone in the audience invited him to go and see select bomb and missile craters in Serbia, Afghanistan and Libya.

    He seemed quite pleased with himself in saying, “As the Latin saying goes, if you want peace, prepare for war.” He didn’t cite it in Latin, though, in which case it’s a Roman saying.

    May 15 06:04

    US plans 'large exercise' in central Europe, attacks Russia

    Pentagon spokesman John Kirby has announced multiple war games to be held across Europe, demanding that Russia should open up about its defense drills on its borders.

    Kirby on Thursday described Defender Europe 21 underway in central Europe as “a large exercise designed to build readiness and interoperability among NATO allies and partners”.

    The maneuvers, he said, are led by US Army-Europe, but has significant US Navy and US Air Force participation.

    "The exercise continues with the Virginia class submarine USS New Mexico, arriving in Tromso, Norway, earlier this week," he said at the Pentagon.

    "In the next few days, there'll be exercises ongoing in Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Germany and North Macedonia."

    May 15 05:55

    Russia Intercepts Three French Warplanes Over Black Sea

    The latest in a growing number of confrontations in the Black Sea saw a Russian Su-27 jet intercept three French warplanes that were approaching Russian airspace.

    Two French Mirage-2000 jets and a C-135 tanker were caught approaching the Russian border, and it’s not clear why. Russian officials say they were prevented from crossing the border and escorted away.

    Such incidents are not unheard of, as NATO nations, usually the US, will challenge Russia’s defense of its own airspace in the Black Sea. Interceptions are very common, and often lead the US to complain that it is “unprofessional” of Russia to chase them off.

    Despite this, Russia’s policy of escorting the planes away mirrors NATO’s own policy toward Russian planes that get too close to NATO airspace. The tit-for-tat interceptions don’t accomplish anything, but continue to happen, with NATO showing its interest mostly in the Black Sea.

    May 15 05:20

    Butting Heads with China and Russia: American Diplomats Are Outclassed

    The recent exchanges between Secretary of State Tony Blinken and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi at a meeting in Alaska demonstrate how Beijing has a clear view of its interests which Washington seems to lack. Blinken initiated the acrimonious exchange when he cited “deep concerns with actions by China, including in Xinjiang, Hong Kong, Taiwan, cyber attacks on the United States, economic coercion toward our allies. Each of these actions threaten the rules-based order that maintains global stability. That’s why they’re not merely internal matters, and why we feel an obligation to raise these issues here today.” He then threatened

    Webmaster's Commentary: 

    Very sad, but quite true!!!!!

    And for me, one of the most terrifying things about this is, that the war hawks appear to be firmly dictating US foreign policy right now.

    War with China and or Russia should be seen as absolute non-starter for the US government; we don't have the troop strength; we don't have the manufacturing; we don't have competitive weapons, and we sure as HELL do not have the money to be pursuing Big Mistake Number 3.

    Unfortunately, just because something is the most pig-headedly, ham-fistedly stupid the US government could possibly do, is absolutely no guarantee that the US will not do it.

    May 14 12:48

    Russia Turns Back U.S. Military Convoy in Syria Confrontation

    Russia's military stopped and turned back a U.S. convoy in Syria as friction grows between Washington, D.C., and Moscow over each other's roles in de-escalating conflict in the country.

    The Russian Defense Ministry's Syria reconciliation center said on Thursday that six American MRAP-type armored vehicles had taken an "uncoordinated route and without prior notice" in the Kurdish-held Syrian province of Hasakah.

    Rear admiral Alexander Karpov, the reconciliation center's deputy head, said in the statement that Russia's military police patrol had stopped the U.S. convoy as it traveled west along the M-4 highway and told it to head back in the opposite direction.

    Karpov described the incident, also reported by news agencies, as "another case of violation of the deconfliction protocols by the units of the U.S. armed forces illegally located in Syria."

    May 14 12:11

    Russia Turns Back U.S. Military Convoy in Syria Confrontation

    Russia's military stopped and turned back a U.S. convoy in Syria as friction grows between Washington, D.C., and Moscow over each other's roles in de-escalating conflict in the country.

    The Russian Defense Ministry's Syria reconciliation center said on Thursday that six American MRAP-type armored vehicles had taken an "uncoordinated route and without prior notice" in the Kurdish-held Syrian province of Hasakah.

    Rear admiral Alexander Karpov, the reconciliation center's deputy head, said in the statement that Russia's military police patrol had stopped the U.S. convoy as it traveled west along the M-4 highway and told it to head back in the opposite direction.

    Karpov described the incident, also reported by news agencies, as "another case of violation of the deconfliction protocols by the units of the U.S. armed forces illegally located in Syria."

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