Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

Last Ditch Attempt - Proposal for a Customs Union

by Oui Mon Feb 11th, 2019 at 09:56:17 PM EST

A fatal last straw that will just anger her Brexiteers as all ideas slowly evaporate as in a mirage ...


(Image credit Financial Times)

Theresa May's Brexit overture to Labour is a high-risk move | Sky News |

    With exit day looming, and the prospect of negotiating changes to the backstop still elusive, Theresa May has made an overture to Jeremy Corbyn.

    In a conciliatory letter, the prime minister offered fresh talks, alongside concessions on workers' rights, the environment and even financial support for deprived communities, all designed to win over wavering Labour MPs to support her deal.

    Depending on which newspaper you read, it is being interpreted either as Mrs May opening the door to a soft Brexit - at the risk of a cabinet split - or as a rejection of Jeremy Corbyn's proposals for a permanent customs union.

Brexit: EU's Barnier says customs union idea 'interesting' | DW |

The European Union's chief negotiator Michel Barnier on Monday appeared to welcome the idea of a customs union arrangement with Britain.

In a letter to May, UK opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn suggested a "permanent and comprehensive UK-wide customs union" with the EU.

Corbyn's suggestion appears to envisage Britain being part of a separate customs union, rather than part of the EU Customs Union (EUCU) itself. How this would be established or agreed upon in a matter of weeks is not clear.

The Labour leader envisages common external tariffs on goods from the rest of the world.

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UK Neocolonialism: Super Wealth and Stealth Power

by Oui Sun Feb 10th, 2019 at 11:48:14 PM EST

Conservatives of the British ruling party roaming the globe to exert influence and extort the truth ...

Tory strategist's pitch detailed how CTF Partners would spread negative stories and press Fifa to 'restart bidding process'

Revealed: Lynton Crosby's £5.5m offer to undermine 2022 Qatar World Cup | The Guardian |

The detailed pitch document - "a proposal for a campaign to expose the truth of the Qatar regime and bring about the termination of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar" - was written in April last year and personally signed by Sir Lynton Crosby.

He said that if engaged, his lobbying firm, CTF Partners, would require £300,000 a month for 18 months to focus on efforts to delegitimise the Qatari government and put pressure on Fifa to "restart the bidding process" and award the World Cup to another country.

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Media War: Trump's Pecker v Hillary's Bezos

by Oui Fri Feb 8th, 2019 at 09:22:46 AM EST

The salicious edits in this warfare will be covered elsewhere in the media, I want to look beyond  when and where it all started.

The salicious parts are well covered by The Guardian and the content produced by Jeff Bezos in the last 24 hours ...

AMI, the owner of the National Enquirer, led by David Pecker, recently entered into an immunity deal with the Department of Justice related to their role in the so-called "Catch and Kill" process on behalf of President Trump and his election campaign. Mr. Pecker and his company have also been investigated for various actions they've taken on behalf of the Saudi Government.

And sometimes Mr. Pecker mixes it all together:

    "After Mr. Trump became president, he rewarded Mr. Pecker's loyalty with a White House dinner to which the media executive brought a guest with important ties to the royals in Saudi Arabia. At the time, Mr. Pecker was pursuing business there while also hunting for financing for acquisitions..."

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Ingeniería Una Revolución

by Oui Thu Feb 7th, 2019 at 07:52:03 PM EST

From Cuban exiles in Florida and Marco Rubio to the leading elites from Venezuala lobbying U.S. Congress and the White House. Undoubtedly a plot engineered in CIA HQ and the Pentagon's Southern Command. Many countries have succumbed under the onslaught of right-wing politicians and the deep pockets with money from oligarchs. The announcement in January took me by surtrise, I was aghast as a dozen or so nations immediately recognized Juan Guaidó as new interim president. EU countries followed suit after a ridiculous condition placed on Maduro to immediately hold new presidential elections, or else.

Leopoldo López led the opposition's challenge to Maduro from house arrest but could his protege thwart his own ambitions?

Under cover of the "shutdown" and bickering between Republicans and Democrats about building the Trump Grand Wall on the border with Mexico ...

More below the fold ...

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Black-Ops Mercenaries On the Internet

by Oui Thu Jan 31st, 2019 at 06:32:53 PM EST

Using tools denied by Western adversaries ... Russia, China, India and Korea trying to level the playing field.

Black Cube Targets Cyber-Security NGO at Behest of Leading Israeli Malware Maker | Tikun Olam |

The Israeli TV news magazine, Uvdah and the NY Times have collaborated on, and amplified a major story originally published by AP. It documents an elaborate, and ultimately unsuccessful sting operation on the Canadian cyber-security NGO, Citizen Lab (CL).  The latter is the key organization which has exposed a series of malware attacks by various hacking outfits whose government, police, and intelligence clients, use the surveillance products to spy on citizen activists.  Citizen Lab has documented the use of the Israeli dirty ops company, NSO Group's Pegasus malware by Mexican and Gulf (and many other) government agents to spy on, and even kill dissidents who seek to expose official corruption and who seek the reform their political systems.

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The Butcher of Christians and Shiites Speaks Out

by Oui Tue Jan 29th, 2019 at 07:28:23 AM EST

Of course on a platform given to Prince Bandar by the Jerusalem Post. Israel, a new and reliable ally of an autocratic Saudi Arabia. What a bs in the Israeli media. Gets me pretty mad his morning ...

Top Saudi official: Barack Obama lied, set Middle East back 20 years | JPost |

    Obama, Bandar Bin Sultan said, "would promise something and do the opposite." He spoke critically of the Iran nuclear deal and how the former president spoke about curbing Iran but failed.

Former US president Barack Obama lied to Saudi Arabia when violating the redlines he famously declared regarding Syria's use of chemical weapons and then not acting when they were used, a former senior Saudi official said in an interview with Independent Arabia.

Bandar bin Sultan served for years as head of Saudi intelligence as well as the Saudi ambassador to the United States. In the interview, he recalled a last phone call between the late Saudi King Abdullah and Obama, during which the Saudi leader told the US president: "I did not expect that [after] this long life, I would see [the day] when an American president lies to me."

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Seychelles Back-channel Leads to Abu Dhabi

by Oui Fri Jan 25th, 2019 at 09:27:17 AM EST

BREAKING NEWS:

Roger Stone arrested in Fort Lauderdale FL. on an indictment for witness tampering and making false statements under oath ... that’s it for now.

The leading Democrats in the House Intelligence Committee will finally focus on the REAL risk to US security and its national interest.

Trump appointee 'overruled' rejection of Jared Kushner for top security clearance | The Guardian |

Last February, the Washington Post reported that at least four countries had discussed the president's son-in-law as a possible target of manipulation given his financial straits - the paper named the United Arab Emirates, China, Israel and Mexico.

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Mass Protests Expected in Washington DC

by Oui Thu Jan 24th, 2019 at 09:08:21 AM EST

The opposition calls by Democrats have been mounting due to the Women's Rights abuse by "dictator" Donald Trump during his presidency. On Saturday a mass rally will call for Trump to step aside and let National Assembly (House) leader Nancy Pelosi become to de facto leader of the Nation. It will be difficult to comprehend Trump to relinquish power and abdicate his Office to a woman. Trump as commander-in-chief still has the MAGA armed forces under control who expect to help him clear the streets from DemoRats and the fake call for a new president.

Anarchy two blocks from the White House: More than 200 are arrested as riot police teargas masked mob of "Trump haters" smashing stores and burning cars [footage January 2017]

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Israel Election: Bots and Digital Manipulation

by Oui Wed Jan 23rd, 2019 at 09:41:07 PM EST

Central Elections Committee set to scold Likud on digital manipulation | JPost |

The chairman of the Central Elections Committee, Supreme Court Justice Hanan Melcer, is expected to announce Thursday that he will force the Likud to sign a covenant promising to refrain from digital manipulation in the April 9 election, The Jerusalem Post has learned.

Until now, every major party running - except Likud- has signed the covenant, which was drafted by Hebrew University lecturer Dr. Tehilla Shwartz Altshuler, the head of the Media Reform Program at the Israel Democracy Institute.

She wrote the covenant in lieu of legislation, because Israel's Election Propaganda Law was passed in 1959, and because it has only been updated once since then to include television, makes no reference to the Internet. Efforts to update the law before the election failed after they were blocked by the Likud.

"I wrote the covenant so there would be rules for the Wild West despite the lack of legislation," she said. "We went to [the] parties to sign it, but the Likud didn't want to hear about it."

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Pre-BrExit Chaos Ensues

by Oui Wed Jan 23rd, 2019 at 09:21:17 AM EST

The British business community has lost its patience with the political paralysis in the City of London.

Today's headlines in the media are filled with gloom and doom. To be fair, not just in the UK but also in the port cities on the continent.

In capital letters when decisions are lacking - F  E  A  R  enters.

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Frontpaged - Frank Schnittger

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The Faces Behind the Election Coup with Trump as Winner

by Oui Tue Jan 22nd, 2019 at 06:44:39 PM EST

Very precise the narrative I found out from mid-campaign in 2016 to the upset victory and inauguration in January 2017. A documentary I watched on Al Jazeera (Doha, Qatar), the state estranged from the Emirates and Saudi Arabia. The feud splitting the military support for Sunni rebels fighting in the Arab Uprising from 2011 forward. The feud that prohibited finding a political solution to the ethnic/civil war in Syria at the Geneva talks.

Watching a part today I found it based on facts and good analysis from experts on the Middle East from the UK, France and the US. Yet when the major part of the election cycle is reviewed the story is quite shocking indeed. And the people have gotten away with it due to the preoccupation of DNC Democrats with finger pointing at Russia's Putin. Putin's part is very minor relative to the billionaires working behind the scenes in the Trump campaign.

Paul Singer and Robert Mercer are both hedge fund billionaires, excellent mathematicians who knew how to manipulate through social media enough voters to tip the scale in Trump's favor. With 77.000 votes the Republicans "stole" three states: Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. HRC won the popular vote by more than 3 million, the EC votes count for the winner.

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Steele Dossier: FBI Biased and Lack of Honor - Shocking

by Oui Thu Jan 17th, 2019 at 08:31:27 AM EST

I have been blogging since the fall of 2004 to express my views in favor of John Kerry and as much against the tyranny of George Bush and his Republican henchmen. @BooMan I considered myself an independent researcher and analyst of politics. In the approach to the Nov. 2016 election, the cross-section of bloggers changed and Democrats were divided in tribes: for or against candidate Hillary Clinton in the primaries. From that time troll rating became a new norm which made writing your view a new adventure.

As soon as the Steele dossier was introduced in the media and discussed on the blog, division hardened. My analysis was plenty of skepticism from the start, especially as I started to look at where the dossier was coming from. My view on the matter was not appreciated. Two years have passed and still not all details have come out.

Reading this article published by The Hill, I agree with the headline: SHOCKING!

This item will be making all the headlines in the coming hours.

Dossier Shocker: Top DOJ Official Sounded Alarm, Warned Of Clinton Connection And Possible Bias | Zero Hedge |

FISA shocker: DOJ official warned Steele dossier was connected to Clinton, might be biased | The Hill - Jan. 16, 2019 |

When the annals of mistakes and abuses in the FBI's Russia investigation are finally written, Bruce Ohr almost certainly will be the No. 1 witness, according to my sources.

The then-No. 4 Department of Justice (DOJ) official briefed both senior FBI and DOJ officials in summer 2016 about Christopher Steele's Russia dossier, explicitly cautioning that the British intelligence operative's work was opposition research connected to Hillary Clinton's campaign and might be biased.

Ohr's briefings, in July and August 2016, included the deputy director of the FBI, a top lawyer for then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch and a Justice official who later would become the top deputy to special counsel Robert Mueller.

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Journey From CIA's Keyhole to Google Earth

by Oui Wed Jan 9th, 2019 at 01:04:51 PM EST

Developing Big Brother in the 21st Century ... interesting!

Google's Earth: how the tech giant is helping the state spy on us  | The Guardian | by Yasha Levine - author

In 2003, a San Francisco company called Keyhole Inc. was on the ropes. With a name recalling the CIA's secret 1960s "Keyhole" spy satellite programme [Corona],  the company had been launched two years earlier as a spinoff from a videogame outfit.

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Perils of a No Deal BrExit

by Oui Mon Jan 7th, 2019 at 10:15:30 AM EST

[Update-1]
Interesting commentary, I would like to point out this section with recent comments:

Re: An EU Explainer by Frank

An Open Thread to discuss and present the many articles and interviews discussing the imminence of PM May's loss of the EU Deal vote in the Commons and the risk of crashing out of the European Union end of March 2019.

No-deal Brexit rehearsal in Kent 'a waste of time' | The Guardian |

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EU Survey anti-Semitism: Corbyn-Orban Paradox

by Oui Tue Jan 15th, 2019 at 11:11:40 AM EST

Once again I was alarmed by another poll and extensive coverage in some media: CNN: A Shadow Over Europe …

CNN poll reveals depth of anti-Semitism in Europe

Anti-Semitic stereotypes are alive and well in Europe, while the memory of the Holocaust is starting to fade, a sweeping new survey by CNN reveals. More than a quarter of Europeans polled believe Jews have too much influence in business and finance. Nearly one in four said Jews have too much influence in conflict and wars across the world.

One in five said they have too much influence in the media and the same number believe they have too much influence in politics.

Meanwhile, a third of Europeans in the poll said they knew just a little or nothing at all about the Holocaust, the mass murder of some six million Jews in lands controlled by Adolf Hitler’s Nazi regime in the 1930s and 1940s.

See also my earlier analysis:

Israel Lobby is Leading in Attack on Corbyn
War On BDS, Progressive Left Under Attack

Just wondering what role is played by the Institute for Statecraft, funded by the UK Government.

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DEA/CIA - A Trail of Blood

by Oui Tue Jan 8th, 2019 at 07:57:12 PM EST

David Coleman Headley is an American citizen serving both DEA/CIA and the Pakistan ISI since his arrest in 1998 for smuggling heroin. Headley had a handler from the DEA and was protected by this US Agency. Whenever foreign intelligence service signaled an alarm to have Headley watched or arrested, his master from the DEA intervened: "He is our man." While working intelligence in Pakistan, Afghanistan and in India, Headley was send as a scout for the terror group LeT. What followed was the 26/11 Mumbai massacre, attack [NYT] on Danish Jyllands-Posten newspaper and a bomb attack in Germany. Only recently has the US taken this man off the streets at the direction of president Obama.

Today I watched a documentary on DW that was quite revealing. I couldn't find a link yet, the title was "A Trail of Terror". The term terror can be exchanged for "Blood". [See update below] After the fists of "Shock and Awe" released by the Bush/Cheney administration in 2001, the world has seen an sharp rise in terror attacks across the globe and tens of thousands victims each year. The global intelligence communities bear a great responsibility because they operate outside international law and beyond control of democratic nations. The IC has become a joint venture with the MIC and has been on a war footing ever since. This has got to be reversed. Political leaders need to take on this responsibility.

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US State Downgrades Diplomatic Status EU

by Oui Tue Jan 8th, 2019 at 08:51:03 AM EST

In secret of course, without notice. Manifesting the yellow streak down Donald Trump's backbone. For the diplomacy experts witnessing the formal invitations to G.W. Bush last salute, the EU diplomat came in last in the long line of nations.

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Goal for Next Decade: How to Harness Capitalism

by Oui Sat Jan 5th, 2019 at 12:59:38 PM EST

Persons need to step up to the pate and take on their responsibility. Just as the New Democrats in de USA have done in de Congressional Election of 2016 ... and with success!

I have plenty of thought for a diary, but today I read the letter from a mayor send to the city council of Purmerend where he renounces his party membership of the VVD, the liberal party of Dutch PM Mark Rutte. What more needs to be said? The same position to the right of a progressive center has been taken by the Christian Democrats (CDA) under "leadership" of Sybrand Buma. Hiding under the cover of "Dutch" culture or "family" values. A farcical view which is as fake as most news read on social media in recent years. Populism is the trend to woe voters in the next election because when not in power you don't have a voice. The allmight of democracy and elections in the "Free World".

The Western world needs to go through another social revolution starting from the bottom up with support of students, teachers and professional leaders in education and the business community. The business leaders must realize their profits thrive in the future by a solid footing in the community they serve.

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Obama Lost Syria - British FM Hunt Admits Defeat

by Oui Thu Jan 3rd, 2019 at 03:13:01 PM EST

The World watching the mad man in the White House ...

Trump hates to lose or even a notion he is not in control of all matters on his desk.

Europe hates Trump, he is fine with that: "Means I'm doing my job right."

Donald Trump pleased Europeans are unhappy with him | DW |

In his first Cabinet meeting of 2019, US President Donald Trump reflected on his lack of popularity in Europe. The president told reporters on Wednesday that he was unfazed by low approval ratings among Europeans, saying it was his job to demand that Europe treat the US more fairly.

"That's why I got elected," Trump said, reiterating that European countries must be pushed to increase their share of defense spending, a point he has made repeatedly when talking about NATO funding and defense and security in Europe.

"I shouldn't be popular in Europe. If I was popular in Europe, I wouldn't be doing my job," he added.

US losing its stepping stone Great Britain. The separation between mainland Europe and the States is getting BIGGER, thanks to Trump and his backers in U.S. Congress.

Twittered for the outside world to get ready for a BIG announcement ...

?????????

More to come below the fold ...

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Perils of the Enlightenment - 250 Years Later

by Oui Thu Jan 3rd, 2019 at 10:28:40 AM EST

From a brief comment by Cat on New Year's Day ...

culture (none / 0)

Reversing the Descent of Man

##Sociopaths teaching sociopaths manners

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Tue Jan 1st, 2019 at 09:42:06 PM PDT  

As I started to read article, I realized a lot of potential on content. As I read further it became contentious and in the end I had many disagreements. Human life and social patterns are a continuous experiment, there are no laws. Every generation is confronted with the puzzle of life and how to bond with fellow human beings. Even at a "wise" age, the New Year presents many challenges. To stay young at heart, stay true to your ideals, I do. A hard core optimist. ;)

To blame the Enlightenment for the perils in today's society ... is a bit beyond my comprehension.

A wish to return to chivalry and the Holy Roman Empire? Go East young man, go East: for starters Saudi Arabia, Emirates and Iran and most nations in between.

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News and Views

 4 - 10 February 2019

by Bjinse - Feb 4, 159 comments

Your take on this week's news

 21 - 27 January 2019

by Bjinse - Jan 23, 162 comments

Your take on this week's news

 February Thread

by Bjinse - Feb 4, 6 comments

Might you have thought that winter's woe was past;

so fair the sky was and so soft the thread

 2019 New Year Thread

by Bjinse - Dec 30, 42 comments

Threads from the threshold of the year to come,

Whispering 'it will be happier'


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