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US/Korea to Suspend 'Costly War Games'

by Oui Tue Jun 19th, 2018 at 07:46:28 AM EST

[Minor edits and links added to article are mine - Oui]

US, South Korea suspend upcoming military exercises | DW |

Donald Trump appears to have come good on his promise to North Korea's Kim Jong Un by calling off an upcoming military drill with Seoul. Trump had called for an end to the "expensive and provocative war games."

Costly 'war games'?

Last year's Ulchi Freedom Guardian exercises went on for 11 days in August and involved some 17,500 US and over 50,000 South Korean troops. However, those exercises mostly focused on computerized simulations as opposed to field exercises with live firearms, tanks or aircrafts. Also participating were nations that deployed troops during the 1950-53 Korean War, such as Australia, the UK, Canada and Colombia.

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Capitalists don't Collude, but Co-opt and Bribe

by Oui Tue Jun 19th, 2018 at 05:53:27 AM EST

The U.S. Suprme Court decision on Citizen United was an excellent starting shot to undermine the People's Vote and the essence of Democracy. By the People and For the People. Sounds neatly as a form of Social Democracy similar to what Europe set out to be after WWII. The attacks of 9/11 and the violence that spread across the globe gave a clear edge to right-wing nationalists and populists based on Xenophobia and Islamophobia. Catering to the Jewish State of Israel and the Atlantic Conservatives who shaped politics towards Brexit and the Victory of self-made "politician" Donald Trump, the Outsider to be crowned in the U.S. Capitol. It won't stop there as the storm of the conservative movement gathers speed across the Western world underpinned by an excuberant Wall Street. Until the banks and financial institutions fail again. So be forewarned!

A long read ...

What We Don't Talk about When We Talk about Russian Hacking

American politics have rarely presented a more disheartening spectacle. The repellent and dangerous antics of Donald Trump are troubling enough, but so is the Democratic Party leadership's failure to take in the significance of the 2016 election campaign. Bernie Sanders's challenge to Hillary Clinton, combined with Trump's triumph, revealed the breadth of popular anger at politics as usual - the blend of neoliberal domestic policy and interventionist foreign policy that constitutes consensus in Washington. Neoliberals celebrate market utility as the sole criterion of worth; interventionists exalt military adventure abroad as a means of fighting evil in order to secure global progress.

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Xenophobia and Islamophobia Roots of Today's Triad of Evil

by Oui Mon Jun 18th, 2018 at 06:13:17 PM EST

The direct result of 9/11 and the failure of leadership not to broaden the terror from inside Afgnaistan. The war crimes resulted from the Iraq War based on lies of Tony Blair and George Bush.

Compounded by misguided policy to ride the wave of economic austerity leading to the Arab Spring and by abuse of the revolution to initiate regime change in Libya and Syria with the support and funding form Qatar ad the Wahhabist Sunni terror regimes of the Gulf States: Saudi Arabia, Einted Arab Emirates and Kuwait.

Tweet Trump about separation of parents and their children

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Geopolitics Oil & Gas: As US Sanctions on Iran Kick In

by Oui Mon Jun 18th, 2018 at 11:01:16 AM EST

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Mubarak Ramadan! Eid Al Fitr

by Oui Fri Jun 15th, 2018 at 03:21:38 PM EST

Crescent moon was sighted yesterday afternoon in the UAE.

Mohammad Bin Rashid receives Eid well-wishers | Gulf News |

Accepting the greeting alongside Shaikh Mohammad were Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and Shaikh Maktoum Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai. Shaikh Mohammed also received Eid greetings from tribesmen, ministers, citizens and residents.

Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed exchanged greetings on the occasion with a number of Shaikhs, ministers, senior government and private institution officials, senior armed forces commanders, security officials, as well as citizens and residents.

The well-wishers expressed their congratulations to His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan,

President of the UAE, on the occasion, wishing him good health and continuous success in leading the march of development.

They also expressed congratulations to Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed on the occasion, praying for further progress and prosperity for the UAE.

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Global Community Gathers in Russia

by Oui Thu Jun 14th, 2018 at 06:19:38 PM EST

Breaking News: Russia wins opening World
Cup match against Saudi Arabia, 5-0

Greatest event in sports to unite nations for a fortnight. The Netherlands and the United States failed in their bid to qualify. The football minded supporters in the Netherlands will find ways to join in the festival by supporting fans and teams of other nations. For Holland it will be Morocco in the metropolitan areas, in the south bordering Belgium, the support will be for the Red Devils. As usual, bordering the east it will stay quiet. Due to the German atrocities during 1939-1945 there will be no festival for the German team. Fraternizing in sports has in't own rules and there are ... borders after all!

Big victory for president Donald Trump

After failing to qualify for 2018, the U.S. federation got exactly the win it needed with the United Bid winning the hosting rights for 2026. The only U.S. Soccer team competing in Russia this month won the game it had to win, a game American soccer couldn't afford to lose. Oops, not going alone but with our NAFTA partners. Putting up walls ... ehhh US delegation in Moscow? How shameful!!

At least security assured, Trump won't be president in 2026.

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Expensive Photo-Op Singapore Kim + Donald

by Oui Wed Jun 13th, 2018 at 07:06:55 AM EST

Even George Bush must be under the impression - USS Abraham Lincoln - 1th May 2003

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FOB Pentagon Big Loser In Korea

by Oui Tue Jun 12th, 2018 at 05:14:45 PM EST

Trump makes his deal with the last hardline Communist regime to end 27th July 1953 Armistice in the Koreas. Comparable deal  with Russia in the offing on Ukraine?

Trump says U.S. to stop war games with S. Korea | Xinhua News |

The United States will stop conducting war games with South Korea, U.S. President Donald Trump said here Tuesday after a historic summit with Kim Jong Un, top leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

Answering questions at a press conference at the Capella Hotel in Singapore's resort island of Sentosa, where his meeting with Kim took place, Trump said it is not part of the equation now to bring home the U.S. soldiers stationed in South Korea.

But "we will be stopping the war games ... unless and until we see the future negotiation is not going along like it should," he said. He added that such military drills are "very expensive" and "very provocative."

The DPRK has consistently denounced the military drills as a dress rehearsal for northward invasion.

Trump said South Korea contributed to the "expensive" war games, adding that if the war games stop, significant costs could be saved.

The annual South Korea-U.S. military drills are carried out twice in spring and fall. This year, the springtime war games were conducted in April, delayed due to South Korea hosting the Winter Olympics. The autumn military drills were scheduled for August.

What's next for US troops in S. Korea? A look at possible scenarios | Stars & Stripes |

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Allegation Arron Banks as a Russian Stooge - Propaganda

by Oui Mon Jun 11th, 2018 at 02:00:04 PM EST

[The diary in full has been posted earlier @BooMan and is more fitting for American politics - some parts do cross the pond for your interest - Oui]

Nothing new under the sun, a concerted force behind a renewed surge of McCarthyism that hit America under the Bush, Obama administrations and firmly established itself under progressives [?] after the Clinton loss in 2016 - Putin did it. As it rumbles on, the Amerian Red States population are riding high with their Hollywood candidate of the extreme right-wing of conservative policy. The Brexit vote in the UK was initiated by the Tory Conservatives. The Tory Conservatives have a strong allegiance to Israel and the Middle East. The Tory Conservatives founded Cambridge Analytica and formed an alliance with Mark Zuckerberg''s Facebook to tilt the American vote by some 15 percentage points towards candidate Donald Trump.

Europe is facing up to a New America under Trump as was displayed at the G6 plus 1 summit in La Malbaie, Quebec.

The G7 summit looked like it was going okay. Then Trump got mad on Twitter.
Mis-Chief In the White House - A Debacle
'Special place in hell': Trump advisers blast Trudeau for comments at G7 summit

The irony of it all, seeking to blame America's deep structured faults on foreign agents ... as old as the battles in Greece before Western "civilization" took root. The rot is from within as history shows when the empire fails. It will take decades, if not beyond the "New American Century."

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Trump Economic Advisors Play Into Fake News

by Oui Sun Jun 10th, 2018 at 06:04:53 PM EST

[Highlights, edits and links added by me - Oui]

Canada's Justin Trudeau says NAFTA talks broke down after Pence made ultimatum | Denver Post |

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said months of intense negotiations between his country, the United States, and Mexico imploded on June 5th when Vice President Mike Pence demanded that any deal expire automatically in five years.

Trudeau said he was prepared to travel to Washington this week to try and finalize a rework of the North American Free Trade Agreement, but Pence - in the phone call - said a meeting would only occur if the "sunset" provision was agreed to in advance.

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Mis-Chief In the White House - A Debacle

by Oui Sun Jun 10th, 2018 at 07:12:06 AM EST

G7 summit fails to calm trade tensions as Trump refuses to endorse joint statement

Just hours after G7 leaders had seemingly found common ground on "rules based trade," US President Trump refused to endorse a joint communique. He then called Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau "dishonest and weak."

The summit between the United States, Germany, France, Japan, Canada, Britain and Italy was one of the most fractious ever, and the agreement on a final communique could not paper over differences on trade, the environment and Iran nuclear deal.

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British Spooks Exploiting Populist Insurgency for Anti-Russia Campaign

by Oui Thu Jun 7th, 2018 at 01:26:48 PM EST

From BooMan's fp story - Why the GOP Thought Clinton's Server Had Been Hacked .

Note 1 from the Papadopoulos indictment:

Defendant PAPADOPOULOS later learned that the Female Russian National was not in fact a relative of President Putin. In addition, while defendant PAPADOPOULOS expected that the Professor and the Female Russian National would introduce him to the Russian Ambassador in London, they never did.

A typical scam, how a nitwit like Papadopoulos got scammed by a Professor from Malta assisted by his girlfriend or Putin's niece to gain advantage in American-Russian relations. Close to Putin? Laughable indeed.

All supported by the dirt spread by a MI6 British operative Christopher Steele who himself was tied to the Obama administration on research done on corruption in the Ukraine, sending his reports to Victoria Nuland. MI6 has much better relationschip in collusion with the Obama White House than on possible collusion of the Trump Campaign and the Russia officials in the year 2016. Steele had been out of the Russian Federation for over 15 years!

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US Amb Grenell Worse Than President Putin

by Oui Wed Jun 6th, 2018 at 08:21:52 AM EST

It's the United States of America that's been devisive over the past decades to harm peace in the world. A clear view, one of many signs in the past, was clearly stated by new US Ambassador Grenell to Germany. I do hope the shitstorm doesn't subside and European leaders will stand-up for ethics, morals and show some spine to the one moronic superpower in the world aiming to destroy the planet. Ooops, our slimeball PM Rutte will visit Herr Trumpf in the White House to receive gratitude for a continued PR pressure on Russia and Putin as only Bill Browder could do better. An Oscar nomination anyone?

Dutch elections: Prime minister Mark Rutte calls for a 'stand against Geert Wilders' populism' as Netherlands goes to the polls
Mark Rutte before the election: Leave if you don't like it here

How did Rutte manage? By positioning his VVD party platform as close as possible to Geert Wilders' PVV on immigration and radical Islam. A true wolf in sheep's clothing. To let the conservative agenda in Dutch politics prevail. Rutte is a close ally of Theresa May and the U.S. President with whatever name on the mailbox 1000 Pennsylvania Avenue.

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Iran Readies Natanz for Enrichment within Limits JCPOA

by Oui Tue Jun 5th, 2018 at 09:32:23 PM EST

Leader: Nuclear agency must get ready for enrichment up to 190,000SWU as of tomorrow

Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has ordered the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) to make preparations for enrichment of uranium up to a level of 190,000 SWU without any delay.

Ayatollah Khamenei made the remarks in a ceremony held at the Imam Khomeini Mausoleum in south Tehran to commemorate the 29th anniversary of the passing away of the founder of the Islamic Republic while talking about Iran's nuclear deal with the P5+1 group of countries, which is officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

    "It seems from what they say that some European governments expect the Iranian nation to both put up with sanctions and give up its nuclear activities and continue to observe limitations [on its nuclear program]. I tell those governments that this bad dream will never come true," the Leader said.

    Stressing that the Iranian nation and government cannot tolerate to be both sanctioned and be put in the "nuclear custody," Ayatollah Khamenei ordered the AEOI to take rapid steps to make preparations for starting uranium enrichment "up to a level of 190,000SWU for the time being within the framework of the JCPOA" and take other preliminary steps that the president has ordered from tomorrow.

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Fake America In 3 Tweets

by Oui Sun Jun 3rd, 2018 at 07:08:13 AM EST

What more do we need to say or analyze ... woefully disturbed and far off the mark for moral standing. America got its president to destroy the planet ... America First! Corrupt ... corrupt ... corrupt ...

Dinesh D'Souza: Why did Trump pardon the provocateur? | BBC News |

Donald Trump announced that he would use his presidential powers to pardon Dinesh D'Souza, who had pleaded guilty in 2014 for campaign finance law violations.

It marks the latest twist in the rise, fall and Trump-facilitated rehabilitation of the Indian-born conservative author, lecturer and all-around political provocateur.

It also is only the latest example of Mr Trump flexing his presidential powers in a way that is markedly different from his predecessors - and could have serious implications for US politics.

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US/UK Point Man in Anti-Russia Campaign Speaks Up

by Oui Fri Jun 1st, 2018 at 09:28:11 PM EST

Deflecting all events that doesn't fit well into his narrative, Bil Browder talks to the media ...

Bill Browder: I found a way to challenge Putin. He's really sore about it | The Guardian |

Browder is heartened, though, that attitudes to Russia appear to be hardening, at least in Britain, after the Skripal case. Parliament is clearly "seething", he said, and Theresa May's speech on the incident was "extremely tough. But now she needs to follow up with action."

The Chelsea football club owner, Roman Abramovich, may have taken up Israeli citizenship this week because of his UK visa problems, but "even assuming that's policy, does `not renewing a visa' measure up against a chemical weapons attack?"
Having himself faced death threats, Browder finds western agonising over the "niceties" of whether or not the Russian journalist Arkady Babchenko should have gone along with the Ukrainian secret service's plan to fake his own death this week to be absurd.

"Far too many people have been killed by Putin already," he says. "If you ask me whether I prefer a purist approach towards the information war or having Mr Babchenko dead, I know my answer. Russia is going to make stuff up no matter what. We should just save lives where we can and debunk their nonsense."

Bill Browder got roasted during the sworn testimony of Glenn Simpson [Fusion GPS] before U.S. Congress in August 2017.

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US Foreign Policy from Crisis to Crisis

by Oui Thu May 31st, 2018 at 11:59:37 AM EST

h/t Cat @EuroTrib

The Imperial Logic of U.S. Foreign Policy

How can U.S. foreign policy of the past several decades be explained in a systematic and rational way? The following chart - based on a model developed by political science professors David Sylvan and Stephen Majeski - reveals the imperial logic behind U.S. diplomatic and military interventions around the globe.

 « click for more info »

The American Empire and its Media

Largely unbeknownst to the general public, executives and top journalists of almost all major US news outlets have long been members of the influential Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).

Established in 1921 as a private, bipartisan organization to "awaken America to its worldwide responsibilities", the CFR and its close to 5000 elite members have for decades shaped U.S. foreign policy and public discourse about it. As a well-known Council member once explained, the goal has indeed been to establish a global Empire, albeit a "benevolent" one.

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Malian Immigrant Saves Child from Paris Balcony

by Oui Mon May 28th, 2018 at 10:02:25 AM EST

Mamoudou Gassama: Mali 'Spiderman' scales four floors to rescue child from Paris balcony

After seeing the child was in danger, it took Mamoudou Gassama, 22, less than a minute to scale the outside of the building and haul the boy over the balcony to safety.

Gassama told Le Parisien he was watching a football match at a nearby restaurant with friends when he heard a commotion.

"We saw a lot of people screaming, honking, so, I crossed the road to save him," he said.

Gassama did not think twice about scaling the building, telling BFM Paris: "Thank god, I saved him."

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Poroshenko's Losing Bet on a Clinton Win

by Oui Fri May 25th, 2018 at 08:13:31 AM EST

See also Martin Longman's fp story earlier ...

The World of Michael Cohen and Felix Sater

My earlier diary on Felix Sater ...

It's Not Russia ...

Trump lawyer 'paid by Ukraine' to arrange White House talks

Donald Trump's personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, received a secret payment of at least $400,000 (£300,000) to fix talks between the Ukrainian president and President Trump, according to sources in Kiev close to those involved.

The payment was arranged by intermediaries acting for Ukraine's leader, Petro Poroshenko, the sources said, though Mr Cohen was not registered as a representative of Ukraine as required by US law.

Mr Cohen denies the allegation.

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Trump Campaign: George Bush Sr. and Spy Stefan Halper

by Oui Fri May 25th, 2018 at 07:59:13 AM EST

Puzzling ... US Presidential Election 2016:
Cambridge Espionage Halper Dearlove British Conservatives MI6 and ties to CIA / George Bush Sr.

George H. Bush, former CIA Director, involved in the Bay of Pigs operation, the plumbers, Watergate, assassinations, drugs running for CIA, Vietnam War, Laos, Columbia, Nicaragua, Afghanistan ... political frontmen on the payroll, Marcos, Noriega, brother of Kharzai ...

h/t Cat :: Returning to your simple remark "Halper" refers to Stefan Halper, an US intelligence agent US Congress tried to keep confidential: Intel Uses Media To Report Informant's Life In Danger, Turns Out They Are Just Covering Themselves

Cambridge politics professor outed as FBI informant in Trump investigation | Varsity |

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News and Views

 18 - 25 June 2018

by Bjinse - Jun 18, 11 comments

Your take on this week's news

 11 - 17 June 2018

by Bjinse - Jun 12, 106 comments

Your take on this week's news

 June Open Thread

by Bjinse - Jun 3, 43 comments

Whatever thread you make makes you. Thread wisely.

 May Open Thread

by Bjinse - May 14, 14 comments

If you would thread something, you must be something

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