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Russia: America's Sworn Adversary

sjlendman.blogspot.com - Thu, 30/06/2016 - 22:49
Russia: America’s Sworn Adversary
by Stephen Lendman
It’s no secret. Longstanding US plans call for regime change, wanting Russian sovereign independence eliminated, hegemonic US control replacing it.
Recklessly dangerous US provocations seem heading things inevitably toward confrontation, especially worrisome if neocon Hillary Clinton succeeds Obama, a longstanding Russia/Putin hater, favoring belligerence over diplomacy - likely to be more aggressive than troubling current administration policy.
According to Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu, US-dominated NATO “more than doubled” its provocative actions near Russia’s border - deploy(ing about 1,200 pieces of military equipment, including 30 combat jets, as well as more than 1,000 soldiers on the territories of the Eastern European countries on a rotational basis.”
“US navy ships as well as military vessels of other NATO members regularly enter the Baltic and Black Seas,” threatening Russian security.
So-called missile defense systems in Romania, Poland to come, are solely for offense, targeting Russia’s heartland, potentially with nuclear weapons.
Thousands more US-led NATO combat troops intended for Eastern Europe heighten the risk for war, Russia forced to take counter-measures, Putin explaining:
“A modern and well-equipped army and navy are a guarantee of the Motherland’s sovereignty and independence, as well as of our citizens’ security.”
He stressed a national commitment to “be ready to respond quickly and adequately to any potential threats…provocation(s) (or) aggressive actions” - well aware of the danger Washington poses.
According to Russia’s Defense Ministry, its latest provocation involved the Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer Gravely, breaching international navigation safety rules and bilateral agreements, coming dangerously close to Russia’s Yaroslav Mudry frigate in the eastern Mediterranean.
“The Russian warship was in international waters, cruising steadily and without making any dangerous maneuvers towards the US ship,” a ministry statement said. It violated International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (IRPCS).
The Pentagon “constantly accus(es) Russian pilots and sailors of the lack of professionalism.”
“(T)his incident concerning the dangerous maneuvering of the guided missile destroyer Gravely has shown that US Navy sailors allow themselves to forget about the fundamental principles of navigation security and ignore the consequences dangerous maneuvering can cause in heavy shipping areas.”
The Gravely provocatively came within 180 meters of the Yaroslav Mudry in international waters. It violated IRPCS Rule 13, requiring “an overtaking vessel (to) keep out of the way of the” ship it’s approaching.
Rule 15 was breached, stipulating that approaching another vessel on its starboard side requires yielding it right-of-way passage.
Repeated US provocations risk direct confrontation. Is eventual war inevitable?
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 
His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

Anti-Democratic Democrat Party Platform

sjlendman.blogspot.com - Thu, 30/06/2016 - 02:28
Anti-Democratic Democrat Party Platform
by Stephen Lendman
Republican and Democrat party policies consistently represent privileged Americans at the expense of most everyone else - notably since Bill and Hillary Clinton’s deplorable 1990s co-presidency.
Campaigning ahead of the 1992 election, Bill promoted the idea, using the phrase “two for the price of one.” The prospect of repeating the same mistake this November should scare everyone.
Meeting in St. Louis last weekend, Democrats drafted a largely business as usual platform, lofty mumbo jumbo rhetoric pretending otherwise - final approval coming when the full platform committee meets in Orlando, FL on July 8 and 9, ratification at the Philadelphia party convention from July 25 - 28.
Jobs creation is highlighted, fulfillment way short of bipartisan campaign and platform rhetoric, notably since the GW Bush years. 
Most good ones went overseas to low-wage countries. They’re gone, others joining them. Largely rotten low-pay/poor-benefit ones remain. Workers need two or more to survive.
Proposals for universal healthcare, a $15 minimum wage indexed to inflation, ending Israel’s occupation of Palestine, a carbon tax, opposition to the anti-consumer, stealth corporate coup d’etat Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and fracking were rejected.
Nothing was said about the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) -like TPP, involving America and EU countries - both trade bills nightmarish for ordinary people.
Nothing about Washington’s imperial project. Nothing about endless wars of aggression. Nothing about renouncing them, endorsing peace as the party’s top priority. 
Nothing about rescinding police state laws. Nothing about endorsing governance of, by and for everyone equitably, the general welfare, making America beautiful for everyone, instead of its privileged few alone.
Virtually nothing worth supporting. Weasel words about “advancing our party’s progressive ideals…addressing the needs of all Americans,” supporting public education, “looking out for working people,” taxing the super-rich, “expanding Social Security,” curbing prescription drug costs, promoting clean energy, ending mass incarceration, and “Wall Street reform” rang resoundingly hollow.
Even claiming to support the abolition of the death penalty “as a cruel and unusual form of punishment (for) the first time in (party) history” is duplicitous.
What about millions of imperial war victims, corpses attesting to bipartisan barbarity - capital punishment on an industrial scale, genocide by any standard!
Undemocratic Democrats like their Republican counterparts aren’t looking out for anyone but themselves and privileged interests they support.
In November, voters should either back independent candidates or none at all - renouncing neocon-infested Democrat and Republican parties once and for all.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 
His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

Putin Lifts Tourism Ban to Turkey, Normalized Relations to Follow?

sjlendman.blogspot.com - Thu, 30/06/2016 - 02:12
Putin Lifts Tourism Ban to Turkey, Normalized Relations to Follow?
by Stephen Lendman
A previous article discussed Erdogan’s hollow apology to Putin for the willful downing of a Russian warplane in Syrian airspace - an act of war, a treacherous “stab in the back,” according to Russia’s president at the time.
Both countries have irreconcilable differences on Syria. Allied with Washington, NATO and other rogue partners, Erdogan supports ISIS and other terrorist groups, wants Assad toppled, northern parts of the country annexed, the Syrian Arab Republic’s sovereignty destroyed.
Putin wants peaceful conflict resolution, Syrian independence and territorial integrity preserved and protected.
So why is he willing to deal with a ruthless despot, an international outlaw, a war criminal, a man he called “an accomplice of terrorists” - why when nothing in prospect will likely bridge the huge chasm between the agendas of both countries?
Yet following Erdogan’s hollow outreach, he agreed to lift the ban on Russian tourism to Turkey - during a phone conversation between both leaders he initiated.
According to a Kremlin press statement, he “instructed the government to enter into negotiations with the relevant Turkish authorities to restore mutually advantageous bilateral cooperation in the trade and economic and other spheres” - including lifting the ban on Russian tourists visiting Turkey.
Both leaders stressed “the necessity to intensify international cooperation in the fight against the common terrorist threat.”
Fact: Putin means it. He’s genuine, candid, forthright - a mensch. He says what he means and means what he says.
Fact: Erdogan is polar opposite - ruthless, lawless, duplicitous. His policies challenge Russia’s geopolitical agenda, wanting it undermined.
According to the Kremlin press service, both leaders “agreed to consider the possibility of…meeting in the near future.” Their discussion “aimed at restoring the traditionally friendly character of a multi-faced bilateral cooperation.”
On July 1, Sergey Lavrov will meet his Turkish counterpart during the Council of Foreign Ministers of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC). Putin indicated normalizing Russia/Turkey relations began - following receipt of Erdogan’s letter and issues both leaders discussed by phone.
Will normalization begin a new era of Turkish/Russia relations, their leaders supporting the same anti-terrorism world peace agenda? 
Will America end its imperial project, renounce war, slash its military spending, and pay generous reparations to surviving families of its millions of victims?
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 
His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

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