Jair Bolsonaro’s First 53 Days as President of Brazil Have Been a Resounding, Scandalous Failure

jair-bolsonaros-first-53-days-as-president-of-brazil-have-been-a-resounding-scandalous-failure

22-02-19 02:57:00,

Something peculiar is going on between Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and his vice president, Gen. Hamilton Mourão.

Late last month, Bolsonaro was scheduled for a surgical procedure to remove the colostomy bag he’d been using since being stabbed ahead of the presidential election. Before he went under the knife, Bolsonaro told his advisers that he would not turn over the powers of the presidency to Mourão while in surgery. A few days earlier, Mourão had made the most of the four days he spent as acting president while Bolsonaro was in Davos, Switzerland, by publicly undercutting his boss on a series of key issues in interviews with the press.

Members of Bolsonaro’s cabinet were “irritated” by his decision not to bestow Mourão with presidential powers, Época magazine reported. And the unofficial word coming from Bolsonaro’s office was that he hadn’t been “properly advised on the delicacy of the surgery.” Eventually, he would reverse course and signed over executive powers for 48 hours — but not the full 17 days he would spend in the hospital.

The whole saga nicely encapsulates Bolsonaro’s young presidency: mistrust sowing internal division; a leak; the unmasking of the president’s ignorance; and then, eventually, a forced reversal.

Bolsonaro rose to power thanks to a hodgepodge far-right coalition that came together just long enough to get the 63-year-old politician elected president of Brazil. But that coalition has spent all 53 days of his tenure in office eating itself alive. The rhetoric of Bolsonaro’s campaign crashed into the reality of his government with resounding thunder. Indecisiveness; power struggles leaked to the media; revelations of a son’s links to an organized crime boss; and multiple corruption allegations have dogged the president as he walked back campaign promises and stumbled through the turbulent, sometimes nonsensical, early days of the new administration.

So much has happened over the last 7 1/2 weeks that it’s impossible to take stock of it all. But by looking through the wreckage, perhaps you can get a sense of Brazil’s political life as of late.

Brazilian Vice President Hamilton Mourão leaves the vice presidential office in Brazil on Jan. 28, 2019.

Photo: Jorge William/Agência O Globo (GDA via AP Images)

The Backstabber

As Bolsonaro World quickly melts into a puddle,

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First Venezuela, now Nicaragua? Bolton says Ortega’s days ‘numbered’ & people ‘will soon be free’

first-venezuela-now-nicaragua-bolton-says-ortegas-days-numbered-amp-people-will-soon-be-free

21-02-19 11:40:00,

US President Donald Trump’s top foreign policy advisor John Bolton appears dead set on resuming his decades-long stand-off with Nicaragua President Daniel Ortega, hinting that Washington-backed regime change may be in the offing.

“The Ortega regime has sentenced three farm leaders to 550 years in prison for their roles in protests in 2018, where Ortega’s police forces reportedly killed 300 activists. As President Trump said Monday, Ortega’s days are numbered and the Nicaraguan people will soon be free,” the national security advisor to the US president tweeted on Wednesday.

The Ortega regime has sentenced three farm leaders to 550 years in prison for their roles in protests in 2018, where Ortega’s police forces reportedly killed 300 activists. As President Trump said Monday, Ortega’s days are numbered and the Nicaraguan people will soon be free.

— John Bolton (@AmbJohnBolton) February 20, 2019

The leaders of anti-Ortega protests were given jail terms this week, after they were implicated in the deaths of four policemen and a teacher during a shootout last July.

The Central American nation has been rocked by unrest since April last year, with protesters demanding the resignation of Sandinista party leader Ortega, who has been president since 2007, and convincingly won another five-year term in 2016.

Also on rt.com
US-funded NGO that sank $4.1mn into Nicaragua protests says it’s ‘misleading’ to report about it

The US has repeatedly backed the uprising against the left-wing government, and last November Bolton made a keynote speech calling for the “crumbling” of what he called the “Troika of Tyranny” – Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Cuba – saying the states represented a “a sordid cradle of communism in the Western hemisphere.”

On Monday, Trump name-checked the same three countries, saying their “great potential” would be unlocked with the collapse of socialism. To expedite the process, Congress last year imposed financial measures that would make it difficult for the economically-stricken Nicaragua to obtain international loans, as well as slapping sanctions on top officials in Managua.

Revenge served ice-cold

Bolton’s history with Ortega goes back to the 1980s. Just as now,

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Call for the First “Assembly of the Assemblies” of the Yellow Vests – Global Research

call-for-the-first-8220assembly-of-the-assemblies8221-of-the-yellow-vests-8211-global-research

02-02-19 04:54:00,

We, the Yellow Vests of roundabouts,  car parks, squares, assemblies and demonstrations, have  gathered this 26 and 27 January 2019 in an ‘assembly of the assemblies’, uniting a hundred delegations, responding to the Call Of The Yellow Vests of Commercy (see this).

Since 17 November, from the smallest village, from the rural world to the largest city, we have risen up against this deeply violent, unjust and unbearable society. We won’t let it happen again! We revolt against high cost of living, insecurity and poverty. We want our loved ones, our families and our children to live in dignity. 26 billionaires own as much as half of humanity. That is unacceptable. Let us share the wealth, and not poverty! Let us put an end to social inequality! We demand the immediate increase in salaries, welfare benefits, allowances and pensions, and the unconditional right to housing and health, education, free public services, for all

It is for all these rights that we occupy roundabouts every day, that we organise actions and demonstrations, and that we debate everywhere. With our yellow vests, we are taking the floor, we who never have it.

And what is the government’s response? Repression, contempt, denigration; deaths and thousands of wounded, the massive use of firearms that mutilate, blind, injure and traumatise. More than 1,000 people have been arbitrarily sentenced and imprisoned. And now the new so-called “anti-hooligan” law aims simply to prevent us from demonstrating. We condemn all violence against demonstrators, whether it comes from the forces of law and order or from violent groups. None of this will stop us! Protesting is a fundamental right. End the impunity of the forces of law and order. Declare an amnesty for all victims of repression!

And what a dirty trick this great national debate is, which is in fact a government public relations campaign, which exploitsour will to debate and decide! We practice true democracy in our assemblies and on our roundabouts, not on the TV or at the pseudo- round tables organised by Macron.

After insulting us and treating us to less than nothing, he is now presenting us as a Fascist and xenophobic hate mob. But we are quite the opposite: neither racist, nor sexist,

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First Senate Bill of 2019 Would Give Israel Billions of Dollars, Combat BDS – Global Research

first-senate-bill-of-2019-would-give-israel-billions-of-dollars-combat-bds-8211-global-research

29-01-19 03:25:00,

Senator Rubio

The first Senate bill of 2019 would finalize a $38 billion aid package to Israel, combat BDS, and rebut Trump’s attempt to withdraw troops from Syria….

***

According to Marco Rubio, the first bill the 2019 U.S. Senate will take up is one that is focused on Israel. His twitter announcement shows a number of people suggesting that he should instead focus on getting the U.S. government running.

The four-part bill, designated S.1, is composed of measures on behalf of Israel that Congress tried and failed to pass in 2018. Some were pioneered by AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.

The first component is the “Ileana Ros-Lehtinen United States-Israel Security Assistance Authorization Act of 2019” – the 2018 text can be seen here. This would give Israel $33 billion over the next ten years in addition to the $5.5 billion enacted in last year’s defense spending bill. This is reportedly the largest military aid package in U.S. history. The bill was held up by Senator Rand Paul, who threatened a filibuster against it. Most Americans feel the U.S. already gives Israel too much money.

Unlike the memorandum of understanding (MOU) that the Obama administration negotiated with Israel in 2016, this would make the $38 billion a floor rather than a ceiling and cements it into law (an MOU is non-binding). It also provides Israel additional perks, including calling for NASA to work with Israel’s space agency, despite Israel’s alleged acquisition of classified U.S. research.

Another component of the bill is the “Combatting BDS Act of 2019” (the text of the previous version is here). This allows state and local governments to prohibit contracting with any entity that participates in BDS, the boycott of Israel over Israel’s violations of human rights and international law. Many groups and individuals oppose the bill on the ground that it violates freedom of speech. AIPAC is a strong supporter of such legislation.

A third component is “The United States-Jordan Defense Cooperation Extension Act,” which would provide money to Jordan.

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TransCanada and First Nations’ Rights: Who’s Banking the Coastal GasLink Pipeline? – Global Research

transcanada-and-first-nations8217-rights-whos-banking-the-coastal-gaslink-pipeline-8211-global-research

25-01-19 08:50:00,

On January 7, 2019, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police trespassed on the land of the Wet’suwet’en people and arrested 14 land defenders in heavily militarized fashion, following the orders of fossil fuel behemoth TransCanada.

The militarized police were enforcing an injunction from the British Columbia Supreme Court to clear a road on which members of two clans of the Wet’suwet’en Nation — the Gilseyhu (Unist’ot’en) and Gitdumden — were peacefully occupying their land. This land is unceded, as the Canadian Supreme Court recognized in the landmark 1997 Delamuukgw decision.

TransCanada was granted an interim injunction to start pre-construction on the Coastal GasLink fracked gas pipeline, even though the company does not have the free, prior, and informed consent of the Wet’suwet’en people to build it. Five hereditary chiefs whose traditional territory is on the proposed route oppose the project.

All five hereditary chiefs of Wet’suwet’en Nation stand in opposition to the project. Photo credit: Kathleen Martens/APTN.

As RAN said in a statement condemning the police raid,

“This trampling on Indigenous rights in favor of private oil and gas interests and the criminalization of land defenders is not only unacceptable, it’s unlawful, and cannot take place on Indigenous unceded lands.”

The banks supporting the Coastal GasLink pipeline are contributing to this clear abuse of Indigenous rights, even though many of them have stated policies acknowledging the right to free, prior, and informed consent of Indigenous communities.

Who’s banking the pipeline?

Coastal GasLink is a project of TransCanada Pipelines Ltd., the same subsidiary of TransCanada behind the controversial Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. The 420-mile Coastal GasLink pipeline would carry fracked gas from northeast British Columbia to LNG Canada, a massive proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal that exemplifies the sector’s climate and human rights impacts.

Coastal GasLink is estimated to cost about US$4.5 billion, so how is TransCanada funding the project? Currently, the pipeline has no project-specific finance. Instead, it is being supported by the banks that have extended general corporate loans to TransCanada Pipelines Ltd. (including two loans signed as recently as December 2018), underwritten bonds issued by the company,

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First You Kill Them, Then You Name A Holiday After Them – PaulCraigRoberts.org

first-you-kill-them-then-you-name-a-holiday-after-them-8211-paulcraigroberts.org

21-01-19 11:59:00,

Copyright .© Paul Craig Roberts 2018.- Please contact us for information on syndication rights.


This site offers factual information and viewpoints that might be useful in arriving at an understanding of the events of our time. We believe that the information comes from reliable sources, but cannot guarantee the information to be free of mistakes and incorrect interpretations. IPE has no official position on any issue and does not necessarily endorse the statements of any contributor.

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For The First Time Ever, Wall Street Banks Top $100 Billion In Profit

for-the-first-time-ever-wall-street-banks-top-100-billion-in-profit

17-01-19 09:38:00,

One may not know it by looking at banker bonuses last year, but 2018 was a banner year if only for bank shareholders and upper management: this is the year when the 6 biggest banks generated (well) over $100 billion in profit. They can thank Trump’s tax cuts, the Fed’s payment of interest on reserves, rising interest rates, a jump in dealmaking and a retail-banking boom (if not so much the “bad volatility” that resulted in a plunge in fixed income, currency and commodity trading fees).

As Bloomberg first noted, JPMorgan, Bank of America, Wells Fargo and their peers have already reported more than $111 billion of profit for 2018, and Morgan Stanley will complete the money-center picture tomorrow when it releases its fourth-quarter results Thursday and only makes this number bigger.

While JPMorgan and Bank of America both had record years, Goldman and Citigroup had their biggest annual profits since the financial crisis. The staggering profits, coupled with upbeat commentary about 2019 may ease fears that rate hikes and trade wars will bring an end to good times for the biggest banks.

To be sure, the banks’ bosses see not a cloud in sight: “Is it the end of a cycle? We don’t think so,” JPM CFO Marianne Lake said Tuesday. “We think the outlook for growth in the economy is still strong. The consumer is still strong and healthy, and we’re expecting to see, maybe slower, but still global growth going forward.”

Her optimism may have been a bit stretched as this quarter JPM missed earnings estimates for the first time in 15 quarters, while the bank’s provision for loan losses surged to $1.55 billion, far above the expected $1.3 billion.

Meanwhile, the question is whether or not the market already reflects the banks’ massive profits, or if there is room for bank stocks to run more: the KBW Bank Index surged 10% this month, on the back of a furious bear market rally and following generally strong fourth-quarter results; however, it comes after banks slumped into a bear market, plunging 20% in 2018, the worst performance in seven years.

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America’s last? First Senate bill of 2019 aims to protect Israel from boycott, report reveals

america8217s-last-first-senate-bill-of-2019-aims-to-protect-israel-from-boycott-report-reveals

06-01-19 05:30:00,

With the start of the 2019 legislative session, one might hope the US Senate would prioritize ending the two-week government shutdown. Instead, the Senate’s first bill of the year reportedly aims to protect Israel from boycotts.

According to The Intercept, the first piece of legislation to be rolled out by the 2019 GOP-controlled Senate will give the US government the authority to cut ties with companies that choose to boycott Israel. The not-very-America-first decree is part of a series of foreign policy-related measures which will make up S.1 – the designation given to the symbolically important first bill of the session.

The boycott-banning legislation has apparently taken precedence over the ongoing government shutdown – already the third-longest on record, shuttering nine departments and leaving hundreds of thousands of government workers without paychecks.

With Senator Marco Rubio (R-Florida) as the lead sponsor, the Combating BDS Act is expected to receive bipartisan support. Coincidentally, punishing corporations and individuals who support the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement is a top legislative priority for AIPAC, the powerful pro-Israel lobby. The bill was previously introduced (but never passed) last year, and gave state and local governments the authority to refuse to do business with US firms participating in a boycott against Israel. Similar anti-BDS legislation has already been adopted in 26 states. So far, two federal courts have ruled that punishing companies or individuals who boycott goods produced in Israel violates constitutionally-protected rights under the First Amendment.

Courts have found state laws penalizing Israel & settlement boycotters to be unconstitutional, but GOP Senate leaders are making a bill authorizing & encouraging states to enact such laws their first order of business in a package to be voted on next weekhttps://t.co/p9s1PcBpFX

— Dylan Williams (@dylanotes) January 6, 2019

S.1 is purportedly being specially drafted to avoid similar legal challenges – but has already come under fire from civil liberties groups. In a comment provided to The Intercept, the ACLU said that the bill would “weaken Americans’ First Amendment protections” and “sends a message to Americans that they will be penalized if they dare to disagree with their government” – or Israel, for that matter.

Many on Twitter expressed disgust that senators were giving Israel priority over their own constituents.

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U.S. Senate’s First Bill, in Midst of Shutdown, is a Bipartisan Defense of the Israeli Government from Boycotts

us.-senates-first-bill-in-midst-of-shutdown-is-a-bipartisan-defense-of-the-israeli-government-from-boycotts

06-01-19 12:07:00,

When each new Congress is gaveled into session, the chambers attach symbolic importance to the first piece of legislation to be considered. For that reason, it bears the lofty designation of H.R.1 in the House, and S.1 in the Senate.

In the newly controlled Democratic House, H.R.1 – meant to signal the new majority’s priorities – is an anti-corruption bill that combines election and campaign finance reform, strengthening of voting rights, and matching public funds for small-dollar candidates. In the new 2017 Senate, the GOP-controlled S.1 was a bill, called the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act,” that, among other provisions, cut various forms of corporate taxes.

But in the 2019 GOP-controlled Senate, the first bill to be considered – S.1 – is not designed to protect American workers, bolster U.S. companies, or address the various debates over border security and immigration. It’s not a bill to open the government. Instead, according to multiple sources involved in the legislative process, S.1 will be a compendium containing a handful of foreign-policy related measures, a main one of which is a provision, with Florida’s GOP Sen. Marco Rubio as a lead sponsor, to defend the Israeli government. The bill is a top legislative priority for AIPAC.

In the previous Congress, that measure was known as S.170, and it gives state and local governments explicit legal authority to boycott any U.S. companies which themselves are participating in a boycott against Israel. As the Intercept reported last month, 26 states now have enacted some version of a law to punish or otherwise sanction entities which participate in or support the boycott of Israel, while similar laws are pending in at least 13 additional states. Rubio’s bill is designed to strengthen the legal basis to defend those Israel-protecting laws from constitutional challenge.

Punishment aimed at companies which choose to boycott Israel can also sweep up individual American citizens in its punitive net, because individual contractors often work for state or local governments under the auspices of a sole proprietorship or some other business entity. That was the case with Texas elementary school speech pathologist Bahia Amawi, who lost her job working with autistic and speech-impaired children in Austin because she refused to promise not to boycott goods produced in Israel and/or illegal Israeli settlements.

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Senate’s First Act: “An Implicit Rebuke” Of Trump’s Syria Draw Down

senate8217s-first-act-8220an-implicit-rebuke8221-of-trump8217s-syria-draw-down

06-01-19 11:42:00,

The Republican-held Senate’s first order of business as it reconvened on Friday for 2019 was to push back against President Trump’s planned Syria withdrawal, as the first bill Republican leadership introduced, led by hawk Marco Rubio, is being described as “an implicit rebuke” of the president’s Syria policy. 

Senate Bill 1, expected to be one of the first pieces of legislation under consideration of the new Senate, was introduced Thursday by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) is being co-sponsored by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and incoming Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jim Risch of Idaho. Sen. McConnel subsequently announced this means Congress is finally set to debate Syria policy; however ironically at the very moment Trump is attempting a “full” and “immediate” pull out of some 2,000+ US forces. This after US officials reiterated on Friday that “no fixed deadline” for troop withdrawal has been given and they would seek to ensure “no power vacuum” in previously occupied northeast Syria would remain. 

The President recently told troops in Iraq that it’s not America’s job to be global policeman, image via The White House.

NBC describes the proposed legislation, which focuses on a new round of sanctions against Damascus, as follows

Although Congress can’t force the commander-in-chief to keep troops in Syria, Senate aides say the move is designed to illustrate the need for a strong, continuing U.S. presence in the Middle East and re-assert the role of Congress on national security. It comes as many of Trump’s GOP allies have joined Democrats in deploring his announcement of a Syria withdrawal without consulting allies and lamenting the subsequent resignation of former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.

The Senate is moving quickly to assert its point-of-view on U.S. policy regarding Syria and in the broader Middle East, and it could serve as a rebuttal to the decision by President Donald Trump to pull back U.S. forces from Syria.

Of note is that Congress is only attempting to “re-assert” its role on national security the moment a US president is seeking to pull out of the Middle East. 

Statements by the bill sponsors referenced consulting “steadfast” allies first. While naming Israel and Jordan specifically, 

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First Human Images Revealed From World’s Only Full-Body 3D Scanner

first-human-images-revealed-from-world8217s-only-full-body-3d-scanner

29-11-18 09:46:00,

The EXPLORER consortium is a multi-institutional group that has developed the world’s first total body medical imaging system that can capture 3D models of the entire human body simultaneously.

The scanner, called EXPLORER, produces images 40-fold higher resolution than current commercial scanners and is expected to open up entirely new ways in which PET/CT can be used in biomedical research and clinical practice.

The University of California, Davis researchers Simon Cherry and Ramsey Badawi are the brainchildren behind this revolutionary scanner.

EXPLORER produces a whole-body diagnostic scan in as little as 20 seconds. It can also generate 3D movies that track radiotracers in drugs as they circulate the body. The machine can scan up to 40 times faster, or use up to 40 times less radiation dose, than traditional scanners, making it better for cancer detection; studies of trafficking patterns in cell-based therapies; toxicological research; studies of metabolic disorders; autoimmune disease and other chronic conditions; and research in overall systems medicine.

“The trade-off between image quality, acquisition time and injected radiation dose will vary for different applications, but in all cases, we can scan better, faster or with less radiation dose, or some combination of these,” Cherry explained.

The first human images were developed in collaboration with Shanghai-based United Imaging Healthcare, which built the prototype system and will be the manufacture for series production. 

“While I had imagined what the images would look like for years, nothing prepared me for the incredible detail we could see on that first scan,” said Cherry. “While there is still a lot of careful analysis to do, I think we already know that EXPLORER is delivering roughly what we had promised.”

In the first video, the researchers used the scanner to surveil the delivery and distribution of glucose in real time. 

“The level of detail was astonishing, especially once we got the reconstruction method a bit more optimized,” said Badawi. “We could see features that you just don’t see on regular PET scans. And the dynamic sequence showing the radiotracer moving around the body in three dimensions over time was,

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First International Conference Against US/NATO Military Bases – Global Research

first-international-conference-against-usnato-military-bases-8211-global-research

20-11-18 07:28:00,

At the recent International Conference Against US/NATO Military Bases (held on November 16-18, 2018, in Dublin, Ireland), David Swanson, Director of World BEYOND War, noted that when:

“last year the Irish Ambassador to the United States came to the University of Virginia, [he] asked her how allowing U.S. troops to use Shannon Airport to get to their wars could possibly be in compliance with Irish neutrality. She replied that the U.S. government “at the highest level” had assured her it was all perfectly legal. And she apparently bowed and obeyed. But I don’t think the people of Ireland are as inclined to sit and roll over on command as their ambassador.”

In fact, in February 2003 the Irish Times reported:

“The Army has been called in to provide security around Shannon Airport after five peace activists broke into a hangar and damaged a US military aircraft early this morning. It is the third embarrassing security breach at the airport where US military planes are refuelling en route to the looming war with Iraq.”

One anti-war activist Mary Kelly was convicted of causing $1.5m in damage to a United States navy plane at Shannon airport.

She attacked the plane with a hatchet causing damage to the nose wheel and electric systems at the front of the plane.

In the aftermath, it took until Friday 25th February, 2011, when the Court of Criminal Appeal in Dublin overturned the conviction against Mary Kelly for criminal damage to a US military aircraft at Shannon Airport on 29 January 2003.

This weekend’s conference in Dublin included speakers: Dr. Aleida Guevara, Member of Cuban National Assembly, Cuba, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, Sinn Féin Defense Spokesperson, Ireland, Clare Daly TD, Dail Eireann, Ireland, Mairead Maguire, Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Northern Ireland, Silvio Platero, President, MOVPAZ, Cuba, Ann Wright, Veterans For Peace, CODEPINK, USA and Chris Nineham, Vice-Chair, Stop the War Coalition, UK.

The conference was organised by the Global Campaign Against US/NATO Military Bases which itself is a coalition of peace organisations from around the world. The organisers are deeply concerned by the constant “threat of war that permeates the present Global atmosphere.”

Their main raison d’etre is outlined on their website and is summarised as follows:

“The increasingly aggressive and expansionist actions of US/NATO forces in violation of international law and the sovereign rights of all nations,

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First they came for the home-schooled….

First they came for the home-schooled….

04-09-18 02:42:00,

by Kit

Image source.

There is a war being waged. Not the one in Syria or Yemen. Not the Nazis shelling the Donbass or the warlords selling slaves in Libya. Not America’s drones executing an entire garden party in Pakistan because somebody on that street might have googled “bomb components” and “American Airlines” on the same day 10 years ago. Not even between the ridiculous buffoon Trump, and the equally absurd “resistance”.

A different kind of war.

Perhaps “struggle” would be a better word.

The struggle is eternal in every direction – it has always been, it will always be. It goes to each horizon and both poles and everywhere in between. In every mind and body. A global conflict with a million fronts in a thousand theatres.

People versus power: A struggle between the population and the power to control it, personified through institutions and governments.

People don’t want to be controlled, they naturally resist it.

Institutions know only control, they crave it.

Power is addictive like that, and institutions are true addicts. Give them a little power and they’ll want a little more. Give them a lot, and they want it all. Power tends to corrupt, as the saying goes, but the inverse is also true: the corrupt tend towards power. They are more likely to want it, more likely to be willing to do anything to get it, and more likely to abuse it once they have it.

That’s the point of democracy of course, to keep the soil tilled. To turn over the manure and hope something green can grow. To fight against corruption by giving it no time to ferment. To stop the rot setting in. It doesn’t really work, but it works better than anything else.

Somehow The Guardian has found its way to the vanguard of this war. It’s picked its side in the great conflict, and it wasn’t ours. Every day, in every way, The Guardian shows its support for them over us. Every campaign, every agenda, is about empowering the state and destroying the individual. They want to hand the government the power to control what we eat,

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For The First Time Since 1975, The Entire Swedish National Guard Was Just Mobilized

For The First Time Since 1975, The Entire Swedish National Guard Was Just Mobilized

06-06-18 03:49:00,

Authored by Daisy Luther via The Organic Prepper blog,

A few weeks back, the government of Sweden sent out a booklet to every household in the country urging citizens to prepare for war or other crises.

A few months back, they told citizens that they should be prepared to last for at least a week without any help from the government.

Last night, in the most unsettling move yet, they mobilized the entire Swedish Home Guard for an “unannounced preparedness exercise.” All 40 battalions have been activated, effective immediately.

The report is on the Försvarsmakten website, which is the official website of the Swedish Armed Forces. Here’s the English translation:

For the first time since 1975, the Armed Forces carry out an unannounced emergency preparedness control of the entire Hemvärnet. All staff around Sweden who are part of one of the 40 home war battalions and who have the opportunity to attend the evening of 5 June and during the national day will be in charge of service. The alarm is ordered by the Armed Forces and participation in the exercise is voluntary.

“We are committed to strengthening Sweden’s defense and increasing our operational capabilities. This is a way to do it. This exercise is great in several ways. We are testing the emergency chain for almost half our intervention organization, we have not done since 1975, says Micael Bydén, the commander.

Initially, staff – from north to south – will be contacted and invited to stand for service. Thereafter, relations will begin to solve tasks, such as protection, guarding and patrolling. During the national day, home care personnel will be seen in many places around the country, from ports and airports to streets and squares. Since it is a voluntary exercise, the Armed Forces can not force anyone to settle, but the chief commander shows great confidence in his staff. (source)

What this means

The Hemvärnet is the Swedish equivalent of the American National Guard.

The Home Guard – National Security Forces (Swedish: Hemvärnet – Nationella Skyddsstyrkorna) is a military reserve force of the Swedish Armed Forces.

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First Greece, Now Italy, Portugal Next?

First Greece, Now Italy, Portugal Next?

28-05-18 01:41:00,

While most investors are focused on Italian politics – the parallel currency ‘mini-BoT’ fears and potential for a constitutional crisis – Spain is now facing its own political crisis amid calls for a no-confidence vote against Rajoy. However, ‘Spaxit’ remains a distant concern for investors as another member of the PIIGS peripheral problems is starting to signal concerns about ‘Portugone’?

And the fundamental data confirms Portugal is next in line for a debt crisis…

As Statista’s Brigitte van de Pas notes, on average, European Union countries had a gross government debt of roughly 81 percent of GDP in 2018.

This average disguises real differences between EU countries. Whereas Greece had a government debt of 177.8 percent in 2018, Estonia had a debt of only 8.8 percent – the lowest in the entire EU zone.

Infographic: Who Has The Highest Debt? | Statista

You will find more infographics at Statista

While, the high Greek debt is well-known, a number of other countries however also have a debt that is higher than their own GDP. The Italian debt, for example, is lower than the Greek but still significant, at over 130 percent of GDP. 

Portugal, in third place, had a debt of 122.5 percent.

One small positive note though: all three countries had even higher debts in 2017, and the European Commission forecasted a slow, but further decrease of their government debt in 2019. Whether this holds true for Italy, with their newly-elected government of Movimento 5 Stelle and Lega remains to be seen.

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The Coming of “First Northern War” in Syria | New Eastern Outlook

The Coming of “First Northern War” in Syria | New Eastern Outlook

24-02-18 09:43:00,

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With war into its sixth year, it is by far clear to all the actors involved in the Syrian conflict that Syria’s Assad is not “going home” now. But then this war was never about one person only; it was more about changing fundamentally the Middle East’s geo-political landscape in favour of the Wahabbi centre of power and rid the region of a common enemy of the US, Israel and Wahabbism: Iran. And the way the war in Syria progressed throughout these years and the way this has changed the geo-political landscape to the orchestrators’ disadvantage means that this war in not going to end any time soon. A mere restoration of Syrian territory and sovereignty wouldn’t do that either, for the real target of the US-Saudi nexus, Iran, remains strong, in fact much stronger than it was before the beginning of this war. Therefore, now that Russia and its allies have succeeded in voiding imperial agenda of ‘regime change’ in Syria, the US still has no intention of withdrawing. Instead, it is now demanding from Russia to ‘distance’ itself (its interests) from that of Iran in Syria, and thus allow some space for the US and its regional allies, Saudia and Israel, to push back Iran from Syria and limit its influence. This is hardly any doubt that this is a sure-short recipe of new conflict in the region.

The US, on its part, has already started to build up pressure. This is evident from the video the Pentagon released in the second week of February, showing its fighter jets destroying a Russian tank, giving a message to Russia about the imperative of staying clear of the next fight-in-the-making in Syria in which Israel is taking the lead, evident from its last week’s air attacks and the consequent downing of one its jets. There is no doubt that Israel has the US backing against Iran. And there is hardly any doubt that the momentum for an armed conflict isn’t being built. Its most recent manifestation came from James Mattis on February 12 when he defended Israel’s ‘right to self-defence.’ He said:

“Israel has an absolute right to defend itself, and I think that’s what happened yesterday.”….“They don’t have to wait until their citizens are dying under attack before they actually address that issue.

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„America First!” – Destabilisierung Venezuelas und Drohgebaren gegen Chinas Führung in Lateinamerika – www.NachDenkSeiten.de

„America First!” – Destabilisierung Venezuelas und Drohgebaren gegen Chinas Führung in Lateinamerika – www.NachDenkSeiten.de

12-02-18 07:36:00,

12. Februar 2018 um 14:53 Uhr | Verantwortlich:

„America First!” – Destabilisierung Venezuelas und Drohgebaren gegen Chinas Führung in Lateinamerika

Veröffentlicht in: Außen- und Sicherheitspolitik, Wirtschaftspolitik und Konjunktur

Die US-Regierung setzt weltweit auf Eskalation. Donald Trumps Devise „America First!”, die sich zunächst als protektionistische Wende zur Abschottung des US-amerikanischen Binnenmarktes und als Rückzug aus der Kriegstreiberei seiner demokratischen Vorgänger anhörte, erweist sich im Gegenteil als Hyperbel von Aggressionsbereitschaft. Ein Bericht von Frederico Füllgraf.

Der jüngste Südamerika-Blitzbesuch von US-Außenminister Rex Tillerson lässt diese Schlussfolgerung zu. Am Vorabend seiner Reise, in der ersten Februar-Woche 2018, stieß er in einer Rede an der Universität Texas in Austin gleich zwei Drohungen aus. Die erste an die Adresse Venezuelas: „Falls die Dinge schwierig werden sollten“, könnte das Militär Maduro stürzen, auf den ein „schönes Haus am Strand in Cuba” warte. Die zweite an die Adresse Chinas: „Lateinamerika braucht keine neue imperiale Macht!”, knurrte Tillerson.

Die Antwort des venezolanischen Verteidigungsministers, General Vladimir Padrino López, war kurz und bündig: “Den bolivarischen Streitkräften soll(e) kein imperialistischer Gentleman mit Anweisungen daherkommen!”. Auch Präsident Wladimir Putin blieb ein Säbelrasseln nicht erspart. Die zunehmende Präsenz Russlands in der Region und sein „Waffenexport an Länder, die sich gegen Washington stellen“, sei „alarmierend”, so Tillerson.

Das Muskelspiel der US-Diplomatie wird auf dem Tiefststand des Ansehens von Donald Trump in gesamt Lateinamerika zur Schau gestellt, der vor wenigen Wochen einige Nationen des Kontinents als „Scheißländer“ bezeichnet hatte. Inna Afinogenova vom Sender Russia Today ließ Tillersons Unredlichkeit nicht billig und widmete ihr im spanischsprachigen Programm die Videoglosse „Humor-Spalte: USA beschuldigen andere Länder, in Lateinamerika zu intervenieren“.

Ölboykott und Einkesselung Venezuelas

Tillersons Blitzbesuche in Mexiko, Argentinien, Peru und Kolumbien verfolgten das Ziel, den Anti-Maduro-Kurs der in der Venezuela-Debatte verbündeten, konservativen Regierungen auf härtere Maßnahmen einzuschwören. Flaggschiff der vom ehemaligen CEO des weltgrößten Raffinerie-Konzerns ExxonMobil geplanten Sanktionen ist, in Lateinamerika und der Karibik einen Boykott des Venezuela-Öls durchzusetzen, der die ohnehin angeschlagenen Staatsfinanzen des Chavismo empfindlich treffen soll.

Die Begegnungen auf höchster Regierungsebene ließen allerdings bald Widersprüche zwischen der harmlosen, offiziellen Gesprächsagenda und den tatsächlichen Abmachungen erkennen. So wollte Tillerson offiziell mit der Regierung Mauricio Macri über eine arglos anmutende „bilaterale Agenda des Wirtschaftswachstums und der Zusammenarbeit in Sicherheit” verhandeln.

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Episode 329 – The First Annual REAL Fake News Awards : The Corbett Report

Episode 329 – The First Annual REAL Fake News Awards : The Corbett Report

03-02-18 08:14:00,

Podcast: Play in new window | Download | Embed

You’ve seen the GOP’s version, but now it’s time for the REAL fake news awards. Join James for this special edition of The Corbett Report where he hands out dinos to some of the biggest propoganda poisoners and fake news stinkers of 2017!

For those with limited bandwidth, CLICK HERE to download a smaller, lower file size version of this episode.

For those interested in audio quality, CLICK HERE for the highest-quality version of this episode (WARNING: very large download).

Fake Eco-scare of the Year Award goes to National Geographic for “Heart-Wrenching Video Shows Starving Polar Bear on Iceless Land

The Award for Fakest Fake Interview to Ever Be Faked goes to CNN for “Bana Alabed’s full interview on Syrian attack” (April 5, 2017)

Fake UFO Story of the Year Award goes to The New York Times for “Glowing Auras and ‘Black Money’: The Pentagon’s Mysterious U.F.O. Program

The Award for Worst Piece of Fake News Propounded by “Independent” Media goes to the thounsands of people on Twitter who retweeted The Neverending Stupid Fake Pentagon GIF!

The Award for Fakest Russian Fake News Tracking Service goes to Hamilton 68.

And the winner of The Fakest Fake News Story of 2017 goes to The Guardian for “How Syria’s White Helmets became victims of an online propaganda machine

DOCUMENTATION

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