Biden vs. Vlad the Impaler
worker | June 15, 2021 | 7:42 pm | Joe Biden, Russia, Struggle for Peace, Vladimir Putin | No comments

https://sputniknews.com/columnists/202106141083147091-biden-vs-vlad-the-impaler/

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Both sides acknowledge that relations between the United States and Russia are at an abject low point. And both sides have said they want to make relations better. But who is actually making a positive effort to reduce tensions and give peace a chance?

It should be obvious that the Russian side is the only party that is acting responsibly and with a generous spirit of trying to improve bilateral relations.

President Vladimir Putin says he hopes to open personal communications with American counterpart Joe Biden when they meet for their summit in Geneva on Wednesday. The Russian leader has played down expectations of a breakthrough, but nevertheless, his stated aspiration is for a productive detente.

There is little to no reciprocation of benign spirit from the American side. Biden and his aides may say the US does not want a conflict with Russia. But apart from that rhetorical concession, the Americans are pushing aggression and making the Geneva meeting sound like a showdown.

The unwillingness of the US president to hold a joint press conference with Putin following their private discussions is a telling sign of the obnoxious American attitude.

There are two reasons why Biden doesn’t want to appear side by side with Putin in front of the world.

The first is he would not be able to handle Putin’s intelligent arguments and criticism of American policy. Joe Biden’s mental faculties are in serious doubt following well-publicized gaffes and missteps of forgetting names and incoherent speech. Not meaning to sound cruel, but Putin would demolish Biden in a public discussion.

Biden and the entire American political establishment constantly accuse Putin and Russia of malign conduct, everything from being a “killer” to interfering in elections, cyberattacks and threatening the national security of the US and its allies.

The depiction is a fantasy based on Russophobia and bigoted prejudice. As Putin pointed out in a recent US media interview: there is no evidence ever presented to back up these wild pejorative claims. It is all unsubstantiated, rabid nonsense.

If Putin was on the same public platform as Biden, we can be sure that the veil of lies would be torn from the American facade of acting tough and sanctimonious. Biden would be left quivering and mumbling like an impotent idiot. Indeed, any American politician would be since they are all brainwashed idiots bloated from their own propaganda.

Thus, the world would see in a wonderful moment just how ridiculously naked the American emperor is and all his NATO minions are.

The second reason for why Biden could not abide standing alongside Putin is that that image confounds the American propaganda of demonizing “Vlad the Impaler”. Any appearance of a smiling Putin in a normal friendly setting with Biden would undermine the narrative of Putin-the-bogeyman.

That’s why the meeting has to be held in private and afterward the Americans can spin some account of the talks to make themselves sound morally superior by claiming to have brought up concerns about  “human rights” and “malign behavior”. We can be sure if Biden dares to act self-righteous, Putin will deftly slam the absurd hypocrisy.

But it’s also vital for the American side to portray the encounter as a showdown between a good guy and a bad guy. The charade only works if kept in private.

At least in the past, Ronald Reagan was photographed having convivial fireside talks with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev when they met in Geneva in 1985 and produced a landmark arms control treaty. To his credit, too, Donald Trump held a joint press conference with Putin when the pair met in Helsinki in 2018 and there was no acrimony.

 

But Biden, like most American politicians and media, is full of stupid antipathy towards Putin and the Kremlin. He warned menacingly last week he’s going to tell Putin “what he knows”. Biden says the Russian leader “needs to change his behavior” if there is to be any improvement in relations. 

It’s going to be very difficult to engage in productive dialogue when the American mindset is so indoctrinated with false propaganda.

Some observers may wonder is there any point in Putin meeting Biden under those circumstances? After all, it was Biden who invited Putin to meet him.

The willingness of the Russian side to engage – in spite of the American animosity – is a clear sign of political maturity and generosity to try to create a more peaceful world. The onus is on the Americans to change their behavior and stop malign conduct. That’s the real challenge.

The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

NATO Drills, Cyberattacks, & Navalny: Highlights of Putin’s NBC Interview Ahead of Summit With Biden
worker | June 14, 2021 | 9:01 pm | China, Vladimir Putin | No comments

https://sputniknews.com/world/202106141083144978-putin-dismisses-absurd-claims-of-russias-interference-in-cyberattacks-against-us-in-nbc-interview/

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A series of high-profile cyberattacks have hit US facilities over the past few months, including a ransomware attack against a major gas pipeline and a meat-producing giant. Washington has accused hackers operating in Russia as being behind both attacks.

US claims of Russian hackers or the Russian government of being behind cyberattacks in the United States are absurd, Russian President Vladimir Putin told NBC in a wide-ranging interview on Monday.

“We have been accused of all kinds of things”, Putin said. “Election interference, cyberattacks, and so on and so forth. And not once, not once, not one time, did they bother to produce any kind of evidence or proof. Just unfounded accusations”.

The Russian president reiterated Moscow’s calls to cooperate in the fight against cybercrime, raising hope that the two sides “will be able to set up this process”.

He expressed concern that the United States, being a high-tech country, has the capability and intent to target Russia.

“The US is a high-tech country, NATO has declared cyberspace an area of combat, it means they are planning something, they are preparing something. So, obviously, this cannot but worry us. I’m not afraid, but I bear in mind that it is a possibility”, he told NBC.

A major US fuel transporting facility Colonial Pipeline was targeted by a ransomware attack on 7 May, which triggered a gas outage crisis across a handful of US states. The attack was attributed to an unknown group of allegedly Russian-speaking hackers. However, President Joe Biden said on several occasions that there was no evidence Russia was involved.

Just weeks later, a cyberattack on an international company and the world’s largest meat producer, JBS Foods, led to the temporary closure of all of its beef factories in the United States. The US administration said it believes some of the members of the hacker groups reside in Russia.

Navalny’s ‘Poisoning’

Answering interviewer Keir Simmons’ question about Alexei Navalny, Vladimir Putin said Russia was not in the habit of assassinating people, denying ordering him killed.

When the NBC journalist suggested that Navalny was not just any prisoner, the Russian president said: “He will not be treated any worse than anybody else”.

In January, Navalny returned to Moscow from Berlin after receiving medical treatment for an alleged poisoning. The activist was arrested upon arrival and referred to a court, which in February rescinded his suspended sentence in the 2014 Yves Rocher fraud case over multiple probation breaches and replaced it with a 3.5-year term behind bars. A Moscow city court reinstated the ruling but reduced the sentence to 2.5 years.

The Russian president stated that he would consider a prisoner exchange with the United States as there are more Russians in US prisons than Americans in Russian jails.

“I know we have certain US citizens who are in prison after [being] convicted. But if one considers the number of Russian Federation citizens who are in US prisons than these numbers don’t even compare”, he said.

He said that US prison administration ignored health problems of former Russian pilot Konstantin Yaroshenko, who is serving a 20-year sentence in the United States.

“He has major health issues, but the prison administration is not paying attention to this. You have mentioned that your citizen has coronavirus [Trevor Reed], but nobody’s paying attention to the health issues of our citizen [Yaroshenko]”, Putin said.

Yaroshenko was arrested in Liberia in 2010 on suspicion of drug trafficking. He was extradited to the US and sentenced to 20 years in prison a year later, allegedly for taking part in a conspiracy to smuggle a large amount of drugs into the country. Yaroshenko has denied all charges.

NATO Activities Near Russia’s Borders

In response to the interviewer’s question about Russia’s troop movements near the Ukrainian border, Putin hit back saying that the nation carries out its military exercises on its own soil, whereas NATO routinely conducts manoeuvres near the Russian border.

“Imagine if we sent our troops into direct proximity to your borders”, Putin said. “What would have been your response?”

Putin dubbed NATO a relic of the Cold War-era, adding he is not “sure why it still continues to exist”.

Moscow, has repeatedly expressed concern regarding an increased NATO military presence in Europe, including the Alliance’s ongoing eastward expansion.

The Kremlin has also underscored that Russia poses no threat to other nations, but it will not ignore actions that endanger its national interests.

Russia-US Space Cooperation Still On

Putin denied that Russia was planning to end its cooperation with the United States in space, insisting that one of the last remaining areas of common interest between the two countries was still on despite threats to the contract from his space agency chief.

“I think you just misunderstood”, Putin said when asked about reports that Moscow planned to withdraw from the International Space Station project. “We are interested in continuing work with the US in this direction, and we will continue to do so if our US partners don’t refuse to do that”.

Russia is open to cooperation with other countries in space but strongly opposes militarisation in this area, President Vladimir Putin said.

“We don’t rule out cooperation with many world nations in space. But probably everybody knows very well our position in terms that we are categorically against space militarisation altogether”, Putin said.

Putin said Moscow believes that space should be free from any and all kinds of weapons located in near-Earth orbits.

“We don’t have these kinds of plans or any plans, especially concerning the transfer of technology of the level that you have just described”, the Russian president added.

Russian State Space Corporation Roscosmos General Director Dmitry Rogozin said last week that Russia might revise its decision to withdraw from the International Space Station (ISS) and build its own orbital station if the United States lifts sanctions.

Sino-Russian Relations

The Russian president told NBC that he sees attempts to destroy the relationship between Russia and China, who are bonded by what he described as a “strategic partnership”.

“I will tell you completely honestly … We can see attempts at destroying the relationship between Russia and China. We can see that those attempts are being made in practical policies. We are pleased with the level of our relationship which as I said is unprecedentedly high as it has developed over the last few decades. And we cherish it. Just like our Chinese friends cherish it”, he said.

He added that he did not see any threats coming from Russia’s neighbour China.

“We do not believe that China is a threat to us. That’s one. China is a friendly nation. It has not declared us an enemy, as the United States has done”, he said when asked whether he was concerned about China’s militarisation.

Putin said Russia had developed an unprecedented strategic partnership with China across a wide range of areas, from politics and economy to the defense industry.

Asked whether Russia’s decision to quit the ISS space station project meant it was splitting off from the US space programme and moving forward with China, Putin said that Moscow was ready to work together with both Washington and Beijing.

“We will continue to do so if our US partners don’t refuse to do that. It doesn’t mean that we need to work exclusively with the US. We have been working and will continue to work with China, which applies to all kinds of programmes, including exploring deep space”, he said.

On Taiwan, which China considers its territory, Putin said that he had no knowledge of China’s purported plans to make a military move on the island nation. He declined to speculate what Russia would do if China invaded Taiwan, saying there was no “could be” and “would be” in politics.

Ryanair Incident

It was the Ryanair pilot’s decision to land the plane in Belarus, and even if he was forced to do so by Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko, it was only because the latter was inspired by the US’ 2013 grounding of the Bolivian president’s plane, Putin remarked.

“The pilot made a decision to land in Minsk. That is all. Why should I not believe him? Ask the pilot. It’s the simplest thing. Ask the chief pilot. Ask the commander of the aircraft. Did you ask him if was he forced to land? Because I have not heard or seen an interview with the commander of the aircraft that landed in Minsk. Why not ask him? … Everybody accuses Lukashenko, but the pilot hasn’t been asked”, Putin said.

He then recalled a similar situation when the US administration forced the Bolivian president’s plane to land in Vienna.

“Air Force One, a presidential plane, was forced to land. The President was taken out of the aircraft. They searched the plane. And you don’t even recall that. Do you think it was normal, that was good, but what Lukashenko did was bad? Look, let us speak the same language and let us use the same concepts. If, well, Lukashenko is a gangster, how about the situation with the Bolivian President? … Nobody is bringing that up”, Putin said.

In May, a Ryanair airpplane traveling from Greece to Lithuania made an emergency landing in Minsk over a bomb threat, which turned out to be fake. Two of its passengers, Roman Protasevich, the founder of a Telegram channel that Belarus has designated as extremist, and his girlfriend, Russian national Sofia Sapega, were detained during the stopover.

Putin’s expansive interview with NBC comes just mere days before the Russian president is expected to sit down for talks with his US counterpart Joe Biden in Geneva, Switzerland.

George Galloway: After Biden’s addled appearance at the G7, we can only hope he’s never left alone with the nuclear codes
worker | June 14, 2021 | 8:58 pm | Joe Biden | No comments

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/526537-galloway-g7-biden-queen/

George Galloway: After Biden’s addled appearance at the G7, we can only hope he’s never left alone with the nuclear codes

George Galloway
George Galloway

was a member of the British Parliament for nearly 30 years. He presents TV and radio shows (including on RT). He is a film-maker, writer and a renowned orator. Follow him on Twitter @georgegalloway

George Galloway: After Biden’s addled appearance at the G7, we can only hope he’s never left alone with the nuclear codes
The G7 was predictable theatre macabre, but the US president’s bewilderment and confusion – in stark contrast to the acuity of 95-year-old Queen Elizabeth, who is still very much on top of her game – will be the lasting memory.

As a befuddled Joe Biden was led around court at the so-called G7 by his good wife, the young Queen Elizabeth – sans the Duke of Edinburgh for the first time – held centre stage.

Age affects us all in different ways and one must extend charity towards the afflicted. But the US head of state cut a sorry spectacle when not in front of a teleprompter – at least by comparison with his hostess, who, at 95, is 17 years his senior.

The 78-year-old president said the Queen reminded him of his mother, which might have been why he climbed on her knee with a pelican bib on and asked her for a rusk.

I made that last bit up, but such was the US president’s permanently bemused bewilderment in England, nobody would have been too surprised had he done so.

ALSO ON RT.COMGalloway: Looking forward to Joe Biden’s first 100 days, it’s impossible to believe he’ll actually be in chargeMrs. Biden – Dr. Jill – played the role of mother to Joe rather well, in fact. If not for her, several times, live on TV, Biden looked as if he might have walked off the end of the pier or waltzed into the waves.

Not since Konstantin Chernenko has a more obviously gerontocratic cipher been in charge of a nuclear strike force. Kamala Harris must have been watching keenly in case Biden turned out to be not waving, but drowning.

The contrast with Queen Elizabeth was marked. Still effervescent, wisecracking and in control, she truly has seen it all. Her reign has been so long, her first American counterpart was President Truman!

Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush1, Clinton, Bush2, Obama, Trump, Biden… 14 US presidents have shaken hands with the Queen, including one when she was a young princess.

Yet, however embarrassing drooling Biden might have been at the high table, he will not have taxed the royal patience like his predecessor, the vulgarian Donald Trump. The Donald, despite his Hebridean ancestry, seemed not to have had the slightest idea of royal protocol. Between laying hands on the royal personage to walking ahead of her and showing her his broad back, he couldn’t have performed worse short of demanding the cheeseburger option instead of the venison.

Reports suggest that the late consort, Prince Philip, recently deceased at 99, found Trump “refreshing” – perhaps in the way a thirsty man takes but one draught of cold, sickly- sweet supermarket cola.

ALSO ON RT.COMHot topics put on back burner as G7 is sucked into interminable Brexit row and summit descends into simmering row over sausagesBiden apart, the man to watch at the G7 was little Macron, the would-be emperor of France, as he fluttered around like a little brightly coloured butterfly alighting on one leader after another.

Locked in a ‘sausage war’ (I kid you not) with Boris Johnson and the UK – a symptom of the ‘long-Brexit’ malaise by which the Europe simply cannot shake off Britain’s decision to leave the Holy Roman Empire of the EU – Macron knows that Biden, like Obama before him, is not particularly fond of Great Britain, and that, Atlantic Charter balderdash aside, will do his best to do us down.

Biden’s antecedents were Irish. That was centuries ago, but there’s no Irishman like a US politician seeking election. Obama’s were Kenyan. The sharp-eyed will have already seen my point.

Macron has identified the chance of relations spéciales with America to replace the special relationship Britain is said to enjoy with its successor in the empire stakes. Playing Greece to America’s Rome was our job. Macron sees himself as Charlemagne. I hope they kept the Queen’s throne roped off!

ALSO ON RT.COMThat cheeky blighter President Biden says the Queen’s like his mum – he’s way slower than she is!It was all just theatre macabre, of course. The G7 represents neither the world’s democracies nor its largest economies. Canada can be there only out of sentiment. Indonesia, India and other truly large democracies are excluded. The second-largest economy in the world, China, likewise. Europe’s largest country – indeed the world’s largest country – Russia is persona non grata over the ‘invasion’ of Crimea.

But the US/UK invaders of almost every nation in the world sat at Her Majesty’s pleasure. And China and Russia were still there, of course, living rent-free in the heads of those who were in attendance. It was a Cold War ramp that descended on England’s green and pleasant land.

And it was as regrettable a sight as poor old Joe shuffling around like an embarrassing elderly relative. We must hope Mrs Biden is never indisposed, leaving her husband alone to kick the nuclear football.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

Iranian Navy Ship in Atlantic Reportedly Carrying Fuel Alongside Armaments for Venezuela
worker | June 14, 2021 | 8:54 pm | Iran, Venezuela | No comments

https://sputniknews.com/world/202106121083132928-one-of-the-iranian-navys-ships-in-atlantic-might-be-carrying-fuel-alongside-armaments-for-venezuela/

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The US earlier expressed concerns regarding media reports about two Iranian warships in the Atlantic Ocean possibly trying to deliver weapons to Venezuela. The online publication Foreign Policy noted, however, that Washington’s options to legally stop them are severely limited.

One of the two Iranian Navy warships sailing through the Atlantic Ocean might be carrying up to three million gallons of fuel for Venezuela, Maritime expert Sal Mercogliano has told the Daily Mail. Mercogliano came to this conclusion by studying satellite images, obtained by USNI News, of the Makran – a retrofitted military oil carrier that showed the vessel sailing low in the water and possibly transferring to the second Iranian ship, Sahand.

“She is loaded down to the gills. She is obviously loaded with fuel but much more fuel than what’s needed”, Mercogliano suggested.

Oil or fuel is not the only ware that Makran is suspected of carrying to Venezuela – its alleged, but still unconfirmed, destination. The Daily Mail cites another set of satellite images, captured by Maxar Technologies, as showing signs that the retrofitted carrier is also loaded with at least seven fast-attack boats alongside the purported shipment of fuel.

The Iranian Navy actively uses such high-speed vessels capable of manoeuvring around larger warships and carrying out strikes against them using machine guns and rockets.

When it comes to fuel shipments from Iran to Venezuela, the two countries have already engaged in such operations in the past. Tehran sent several tankers under its flags to help Caracas cope with the petroleum shortages in the country. All of them successfully reached the nation’s shores. Yet, the US claims to have intercepted several ships sailing under non-Iranian flags but purportedly carrying Iranian fuel for Caracas. Tehran denied owning the intercepted petroleum, but condemned Washington’s attempts to intercept such shipments as state piracy.

US Worried About Possible Arm Shipments to Venezuela

While all these reports remain unconfirmed and Iran is dodging questions regarding the two ships’ mission in the Atlantic, the US has already expressed concerns regarding the nature of the endeavour. US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin said he was worried that the Iranian warships might be delivering weapons to neighbouring states. A Politico report cited an anonymous American official as claiming that Washington believes these weapons were bought by the Venezuelan government of Nicolas Maduro.

At the same time, the US has so far been less than forthright about its plans concerning the reported Iranian arms shipment. US State Department spokesman Ned Price hinted that the White House is ready to act in response to attempts by the countries to trade weapons that allegedly violate “international obligations”.

“We’re prepared to leverage our applicable authorities, including sanctions, against any actor that enables Iran’s ongoing provision of weapons to violent partners into proxies”, Price said.

It is unclear, however, what violation an arms shipment from Iran to Venezuela would constitute – there have been no UN approved bans on weapon sales to Caracas and the one that used to affect Tehran expired last year.

Even if the US were to decide to stop the alleged arms shipment by Iran, it would have no option of doing so without violating international laws and would risk facing consequences for doing so, Foreign Policy (FP) noted in a recent article. The media outlet stressed that the Iranian Navy’s ships are protected by sovereign immunity and Washington can only take action in the event of a direct threat by them in American territorial waters. The Iranian vessels, however, are nowhere near the US coast and any attempt to stop them risks triggering international condemnation and reciprocal actions against American warships, FP noted.

Cuba Advises Tourists to Visit Island Without Dollars in Cash
worker | June 14, 2021 | 8:51 pm | Cuba | No comments

https://sputniknews.com/latam/202106121083132230-cuba-advises-tourists-to-visit-island-without-dollars-in-cash/

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MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Cuban authorities have advised tourists to visit the Caribbean country without bringing any cash in dollars, which will no longer be accepted as valid currency starting from 21 June, the first vice president of the Central Bank, Francisco Mayobre Lence, said.

“People, who will be coming into the country during this time, will have to arrive with a currency other than the dollar”, the vice president said as quoted by the newspaper Granma.

Tourists, however, will be able to safely use cards in dollars for payments and cash withdrawals in other currencies.

A U.S., and a Cuban national flag, hang from a balcony to mark the restored full diplomatic relations between Cuba and the Unites States, in Old Havana, Monday, July 20, 2015
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A U.S., and a Cuban national flag, hang from a balcony to mark the restored full diplomatic relations between Cuba and the Unites States, in Old Havana, Monday, July 20, 2015

Due to the economic blockade by the United States, the Central Bank of Cuba announced on Thursday that it would temporarily stop accepting dollars. From 21 June, individuals and legal entities from Cuba and abroad will be unable to make any transactions in the US currency.

The duration of the measure will depend on the lifting of US sanctions, according to the bank.

Caitlin Johnstone: The lie that a kinder, gentler US Empire is possible
worker | June 14, 2021 | 8:48 pm | Imperialism | No comments

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/526330-caitlin-johnstone-us-israel/

Caitlin Johnstone: The lie that a kinder, gentler US Empire is possible

Caitlin Johnstone: The lie that a kinder, gentler US Empire is possible
The main rift among the American left wing is between people who seek an end to the imperialist murder machine, and people who just want the imperialist murder machine to give them healthcare.

Minnesota Representative Ilhan Omar has once again been the center of an artificial controversy launched in bad faith, this time over a tweet where she mentioned the United States and Israel in the same breath as Hamas and the Taliban as perpetrators of “unthinkable atrocities”.

“We must have the same level of accountability and justice for all victims of crimes against humanity. We have seen unthinkable atrocities committed by the U.S., Hamas, Israel, Afghanistan, and the Taliban,” Omar said while sharing a video of her wildly unsuccessful effort to get a straight answer from Secretary of State Tony Blinken on accountability for US and Israeli war crimes.

This provoked a bunch of ridiculous garment-rending histrionics from Nancy Pelosi and House Democrats, not because it is absurd to compare murderous warmongering regimes like the US and Israel with vastly less destructive regional forces like Hamas and the Taliban, but because it is considered unacceptable in mainstream politics to suggest that the US and Israel are anything other than beneficent powers who at worst make the occasional innocent oopsie.

This pathetically mild criticism of a power structure which has killed millions and displaced tens of millions just in the last two decades, during a pathetically unsuccessful attempt to get any kind of concession about war crimes and crimes against humanity from a prominent US official, drew so much outrage and vitriol from the US political/media class that Omar was once again forced to issue another pathetic walkback of her comments.

“On Monday, I asked Secretary of State Antony Blinken about ongoing International Criminal Court investigations,” Omar said in a statement on her congressional website. “To be clear: the conversation was about accountability for specific incidents regarding those ICC cases, not a moral comparison between Hamas and the Taliban and the U.S. and Israel.  I was in no way equating terrorist organizations with democratic countries with well-established judicial systems.”

And that is it, ladies and gentlemen. That is as far as you are allowed to take criticism of the empire in mainstream American politics. Even that level of feeble, impotent criticism is far outside the boundaries for anyone in the mainstream political/media class.

So, in case it wasn’t already clear to you, progressive Democrats are a joke. They’re not a real thing. If they are literally barred from even meaningfully criticizing the US empire, let alone actually working to dismantle it, they’re a joke. They will never succeed in advancing any kind of real progressive agenda.

There’s this unspoken and unquestioned assumption among progressive Democrats that it is possible to advance progressive agendas without actually ending the US empire. That you don’t need to actually dismantle the US empire and strip down its military to the bare bones in order to get nice things like universal healthcare, a living wage, and more ethical behavior on the world stage.

This is pure fantasy. It will never happen.

As long as the US is the center of a globe-spanning empire, it will be necessary to keep Americans too poor, too busy and too confused to interfere with the operation of the machine. You cannot allow a critical mass of Americans to have enough money to spend on political campaign donations, to have enough free time to research what’s actually happening in their world, to be sufficiently stress-free to look up and realize that your government is murdering children in their name, and also keep the empire running smoothly. You cannot have an imperialist oligarchy who runs things and also have income and wealth equality.

The empire feeds on oppression, exploitation, ignorance, and blood. It is impossible to dominate the planet with a unipolar world order if you don’t use violent force, and the threat of violent force, to uphold that world order. If you’re not strangling people at home and bombing people abroad, then you cannot have an oligarchic empire. Period.

The main rift you see on the leftmost end of the American political spectrum is between people who seek an end to the imperialist murder machine, and people who just want the imperialist murder machine to give them healthcare. The first group faces a very difficult uphill battle to get what it wants. The second group is just masturbating an impossible fantasy.

This is how you can tell who is for real and who is not: do they want to dismantle the oligarchic empire, or don’t they? If they do, they’re fighting for something real, but the oligarch-owned political/media class will not give them a platform. If they don’t, they may get a punditry job or a seat in congress, but they won’t ever actually give you anything besides feel-good empty narrative fluff.

 

The solution, as I always point out, is to work together to destroy and discredit the oligarchic propaganda apparatus which enables the empire to determine who gets a platform and who doesn’t. As long as they are able to uplift vapid fauxgressives who pretend it’s possible to have a kinder, gentler US empire and marginalize people who actually want to dismantle the status quo, there will never be enough public awareness to force real change. All positive changes in human behavior are always the direct result of an expansion of awareness, so spreading awareness of the fact that there is an oligarchic empire which is exploiting and deceiving everyone should be the foremost priority of anyone who wants real change.

It’s not that you can’t beat the machine, it’s that you can’t beat the machine using the tools the machine has given you. A grassroots effort to wake each other up to reality is a very achievable goal, and once enough eyes are open, anything is possible.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

Britain’s ‘Special’ Relationship
worker | June 14, 2021 | 8:44 pm | Joe Biden, UK | No comments

https://sputniknews.com/columnists/202106101083118262-britains-special-relationship/

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Britain’s much-vaunted special relationship with the United States got a clunking reality-check with the arrival of President Joe Biden for the G7 summit.

Biden told Boris Johnson, the British prime minister, to stop messing around with the European Union over Brexit negotiations concerning Northern Ireland. According to reports, Biden ordered a severe diplomatic rebuke to Johnson not to jeopardize peace in Ireland from British wrangling about customs controls.

That’s pretty sobering for the “junior partner”. It totally deflates British delusions of grandeur and shows Johnson and his ilk to be nothing but lackeys to the Americans who call the shots.

Since the Second World War, we constantly hear about this American-British “special” alliance as if it is somehow a hallowed global force for good. We hear about “our shared values” and other platitudes.

Well, it is special alright. Britain serves as Uncle Sam’s flunky. The Brits provide political, diplomatic and sometimes military cover for American wars of aggression around the world.

The Americans indulge the Brits by smiling and shaking hands for photo-ops like we will see at the G7 summit this week, and by also swooning for the cameras about a “special relationship”. But that term of condescending endearment does not mean parity between the two.

The exemplar of reality was perhaps best seen during the GW Bush administration and Tony Blair’s premiership. The Americans wanted to go to war against Afghanistan and Iraq in the early 2000s, not to avenge 9/11, but to impose “full-spectrum dominance” of US imperialism following the Cold War era. And Tony Blair, with typical British flair for moralizing and affecting civility, gave Washington the moral and seeming legal pretext for launching criminal wars.

For the Americans, that’s what is really special about the Brits. They are dutiful lapdogs that perform an invaluable service of providing gravitas and propaganda to excuse what are otherwise heinous crimes under international law.

The Americans have indisputable military muscle, but the British have an inimitable knack for conniving wordplay and duplicity.

The first British bearer of the special relationship was Winston Churchill who coined the Atlantic Charter with Franklin Roosevelt in 1941 during the Second World War. When that war was won largely by the sacrifices of the Soviet Union, it was Churchill who crucially conceptualized the Cold War that the Anglo-American capitalist powers demanded in order to isolate Moscow. Churchill delivered his rousing Iron Curtain speech in the United States in 1946 before an admiring President Harry Truman. That speech can be seen as the beginning of the Cold War which was really just a curtain to conceal American imperialist plunder in every continent.

The current British leader Boris Johnson, who likes to emulate Churchill, seems to have got above his station with delusions of grandeur.

Johnson is reportedly not happy about the term “special relationship” because he feels that overusing the phrase implies that Britain is “needy and weak” and overly dependent on Uncle Sam. 

This British prime minister was the main architect behind Britain’s Brexit from the European Union. In his hubristic mind, Johnson believes that “Great Britain” (as if that name wasn’t enough!) is now set to become “Global Britain”. He thinks he’s leading Buccaneering Britain to rule the waves again as if it was the 19th century when the British empire pilfered a fifth of the world’s landmass.

Hence his government is sending aircraft carrier battle groups to the South China Sea and declaring warnings to Russia and China over alleged malign conduct. This is while British society is crumbling from poverty and decay.

In the arrogance of Johnson and many others in the British political class, the “special relationship” with the US should mean the two are equals.

But the reality is Britain is a mere flunky – albeit a useful flunky – of the US. It has always been needy and weak as far as Uncle Sam is concerned. If it weren’t for the Americans intervening to bail them out financially and militarily, the Brits would have been defeated in World War I and II.

Joe Biden is not someone to look up to as a leader. None of the US presidents are, except for maybe John F Kennedy and Franklin Roosevelt. They are all imperialist warmongers.

Nevertheless, Biden’s Irish sympathies have been rankled by Johnson and Britain’s backsliding on Brexit which is stoking dangerous tensions in Ireland over a historic border dispute.

The amusing – and enlightening – upshot from that is Biden showing in a very embarrassing way just who the boss is in the relationship between the US and Britain. Johnson has been told in no uncertain terms by the Americans to stop acting the cad and start implementing what he signed up to with Europe. That is what’s special.

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