RUSSIA/UKRAINE | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


RUSSIA/UKRAINE

Nov 29 09:27

‘F*** off home!’ Masked men pelt Ukrainian presidential candidate with eggs, pummel his team (VIDEO)

Anatoliy Grytsenko, who is in the race to become Ukraine’s president in next year’s election, has accused current head of state Petro Poroshenko of organizing an attack during a campaign visit to the Black Sea port of Odessa.

The former defense minister was due to make a local radio appearance on Wednesday night, but when he arrived at the station, the entrance was blocked by a group of masked men “of athletic build,” according to a statement from his press secretary, published by Interfax-Ukraine.

They handed Grytsenko a carved pumpkin with a dildo stuck in its “mouth”, and the words “F*** off home” written on the side, and attempted to pelt him with eggs.

Nov 29 09:26

Berlin says crisis in Ukraine & Nord Stream 2 pipeline are two separate issues

The Russian-led gas pipeline project Nord Stream 2, which is aimed at delivering Russian gas to Europe via Germany, must be completed, according to the German Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy Peter Altmaier.

The minister says the conflict between Russia and Ukraine has nothing to do with the project.

“These are two different issues, two different areas,” Altmaier said in an interview with ARD television, stressing that his office strongly opposes the termination of the pipeline’s construction.

Nov 29 09:24

Not good news for the dollar? Russia and Turkey ditched US currency for S-400 missile system deal

Both facing pressure from Washington, Moscow and Ankara ditched the US dollar when finalizing their landmark S-400 air defense missile systems deal and will do so in the future, Russian leader Vladimir Putin said.

“We understand that if we’ll make transactions in [US] dollars, they won’t come through,” Putin told reporters on Wednesday, citing his recent talks with Turkey’s leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan. “So we thought up another option.”

Speaking at a business forum in Moscow, the Russian president noted that the ‘dollar-less’ S-400s deal with Turkey is just one recent example of the approach the nations share. The same will apply to “other types of goods” as well, he stressed.

“We don’t have a goal of abandoning from the dollar, but we are forced to do so. And, I assure you, we will do it,” Putin said, adding that it will ultimately make global trade more secure and efficient.

Nov 29 09:21

Washington confirms Putin-Trump tete-a-tete meeting at G20 – Kremlin

Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump will have a brief tete-a-tete conversation followed by an hour-long extended meeting at the G20 summit in Argentina, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

The meeting is scheduled for December 1, on the second and the last day of the summit which is due to take place in Buenos Aires.

“At first there will be a brief conversation, as we expect, between the two presidents, and then the Russian-US talks, which may last about an hour,” Peskov explained to journalists. Washington has already confirmed the talks, he added.

Nov 29 04:07

Russia Prepares First Bond in Euros in Five Years

Russia has low debt and is running a budget surplus this year -- much better buy than a US bond for sure. Let's see if the international capital market will recognize as much. Russia's Finance Ministry launched a closed subscription for a euro-denominated seven-year benchmark issue of bonds, Bloomberg and Vedomosti daily reported on November 27 citing unnamed banking sources. The issue will test the strength of investor appetite amid the military crisis in the Azov Sea that started on November 25 and saw the ruble tumble in value to the dollar and federal OFZ rates fall the next day. Last time the Finance Ministry placed Eurobonds was in 2013 issuing seven-year bonds worth €750mn at 3.625% yield. The choice of euro is in line with recent reports of the government aiming to curb the dependency on US dollar and Russian oil majors seeking to re-draft their supplies deals to euro to hedge against US sanctions risks.

Nov 29 03:51

Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, Ukraine crisis two different things, says German minister

The issues of implementation of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline and the Ukraine crisis need to be separated, German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier told Germany’s ARD television on Thursday. "These are two different issues and different areas," he stressed, having spoken out against the termination of the pipeline’s construction. Altmaier also noted that tensions in Ukraine "cannot be settled with weapons." The minister expects that recent events in the Kerch Strait will be discussed at the G20 summit. Government Spokesperson Steffen Seibert said on Wednesday that Germany’s stance on the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline remains unchanged. Berlin regards it as a commercial project but urges to maintain gas transit through Ukraine. The Nord Stream 2 project envisages the construction of two lines of a gas pipeline with total capacity of 55 bln cubic meters of gas per year, running from Russia to Europe across the Baltic Sea.

Nov 29 03:39

Crimean maritime authorities reject claims about Ukraine’s Azov Sea ports being blocked

Kiev’s claims that Ukrainian ships travelling to and from the country’s ports on the Sea of Azov are being prevented from passing through the Kerch Strait are not true, a Crimean maritime authority source told TASS. On Wednesday, Ukrainian Minister of Infrastructure Vladimir Omelyan accused Russia of blocking Ukraine’s Azov Sea ports of Mariupol and Berdyansk by preventing ships from travelling to and from there. He said that 35 ships were being blocked and traffic was only possible towards Russia’s ports on the Sea of Azov. "No one is blocking any ships, traffic depends on actual weather conditions," the source said. He added that according to the official procedure, all ships must apply for passage through the Kerch Strait 48 hours in advance and confirm the application 24 hours in advance. "A ship usually makes an application 48 hours in advance and waits to be allowed to pass," the source said.

Nov 29 03:23

Russian diplomat does not rule out West's help in planning Kerch Strait provocation

"This is a deliberate provocation. I don't have any doubts that some of our Western partners knew about it or even participated in planning it. This is why all of this is not accidental," Zakharova told Russia's Channel One. "The assessments that we hear and the informational campaign underway right now, only prove it," she added.

Nov 29 03:16

Almost 100 Russians return to Minsk after being banned from entering Kiev

Almost 100 Russian citizens who have flown from Minsk to Kiev since the beginning of this week had to return to Minsk due to the refusal to enter the country. That said, the number of such passengers reduced four times during the past day, the Belarusian State Border Committee told TASS on Thursday. State Border Committee Spokesman Anton Bychkovsky specified that "the situation in these areas (Ukrainian airports - TASS) regarding quantitative data and the passenger flow structure has not changed in general." The Ukrainian State Border Service states that border guards acted under the law on the basis of which they register foreigners. "The citizens of the Russian Federation failed to confirm the goal of their trip, so they were not permitted to enter Ukraine," border guards explained.

Nov 29 03:14

Fourth battalion of S-400 systems assumes combat duty in Crimea near border with Ukraine

The fourth battalion of S-400 air defense missile systems has assumed combat duty in Crimea near the Russian-Ukrainian border, the Black Sea Fleet’s press office reported on Thursday. "Today, the combat teams of S-400 Triumf surface-to-air missile systems from a large air defense unit of the Southern Military District’s Air Force and Air Defense Army have assumed combat duty to provide for Crimea’s air defense," the press office said in a statement.

Nov 28 16:03

200 nationalist militants take over shopping mall in central Kiev – and cops make ONE arrest (VIDEO)

MIlitant protesters linked to Ukraine’s ultranationalist Svoboda party have taken over a shopping center in Kiev, vandalizing the mall and demanding Russian businesses leave the country, while the police stood by and watched.

Nov 28 12:39

LIVE UPDATES: Russia-Ukraine Tensions After Kerch Strait Incident

The situation between the two countries has significantly worsened since the incident with Ukrainian ships illegally crossing the Russian maritime border followed by the arrest of the ships and the crews that was called a provocation committed in violation of international law by the Russian Foreign Ministry.

Two gunboats and a tugboat crossed the Russian maritime border on 25 November sailing toward the Kerch Strait, an entrance to the Sea of Azov, where the ships were seized by Russia due to the lack of a reply to a lawful demand to stop.

Ukraine is on the brink of war with Russia after the recent incident in the Kerch Strait, according to Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko. Prior to that, the Ukrainian parliament approved the Poroshenko’s decree, proposing to implement martial law in some regions of the country along the border with Russia as well as along the coast of the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov for 30 days in the wake of the Kerch Strait incident.

Nov 28 12:34

‘Kiev would get away even with eating babies’: Putin says Kerch Strait standoff is a provocation

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin said the clash between Russian and Ukrainian military ships was a result of foreign nation’s failing to hold Kiev accountable for bad behavior as long as it remains confrontational towards Russia.

The remarks were the first made by the Russian leader since the confrontation in the Kerch Strait, a narrow passageway between the Black Sea and the Azov Sea, where a strategic bridge connecting Crimea with mainland Russia is located.

“The authorities in Kiev are selling anti-Russian sentiment with quite a success today. They have nothing else to do,” Putin said during a business forum in Moscow.

Nov 28 12:22

US, Europe & NATO Risk All-Out War by Backing Desperate Kiev Regime

With the US, EU and NATO all bolstering claims of “Russian aggression” – in face of contrary evidence – the real danger is that the Kiev regime will be emboldened to carry out more reckless provocations leading to all-out war.

It seems indisputable that the three Ukrainian Navy vessels were dispatched last Sunday in order to instigate a security response from Russian maritime border forces. In contrast to normal procedures for passage clearance through the Kerch Strait, the Ukrainian warships refused to communicate with Russian controls and acted menacingly inside Russia’s Black Sea territorial limits.

Nov 28 12:01

Escobar: Kerch Strait Chaos Looks "More Like A Cheap Ploy By Desperate Neocons"

The West is complaining about Russian 'aggression' but the incident looks more like a cheap ploy by a desperate Ukrainian president and US conservatives keen to undermine Trump's next pow-wow with Putin...

When the Ukrainian navy sent a tugboat and two small gunboats on Sunday to force their way through the Kerch Strait into the Sea of Azov, it knew in advance the Russian response would be swift and merciless.

After all, Kiev was entering waters claimed by Russia with military vessels without clarifying their intent.

The intent, though, was clear; to raise the stakes in the militarization of the Sea of Azov.

The Kerch Strait connects the Sea of Azov with the Black Sea. To reach Mariupol, a key city in the Sea of Azov very close to the dangerous dividing line between Ukraine’s army and the pro-Russian militias in Donbass, the Ukrainian navy needs to go through the Kerch.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I hope and pray that Mr. Escobar, for whom I have a world of respect, is seeing this clearly.

But we do have a companion story, courtesy of zerohedge.com, offering the following argument at the highest levels by the British military, about how to respond here:

Russian Military officials angered over UK dispatch Survey Ship in the Black Sea

Nov 28 11:50

Russia Deploys S-400 Missiles To Crimea In Military Showdown With Ukraine

Predictably the crisis that began on Sunday between Russia and Ukraine in the Kerch Strait is quickly worsening as Russia has announced plans to deploy more of its advanced S-400 surface-to-air missile systems to Crimea.

Adding to tensions, Reuters has further reported that a Russian warship has been dispatched to the Sea of Azov — waters used by both countries and near where the Russian Navy seized Ukrainian vessels and crew for what Moscow condemned as "maneuvering dangerously" and illegal entry into Russian territory.

The warship was seen departing a Crimean port by a Reuters correspondent on Wednesday and was described as the Russian navy minesweeper ship, the Vice-Admiral Zakharin, going in the direction of the Sea of Azov.

This comes a day after Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko issued provocative statements during a televised interview on Tuesday that his country is "under threat of full-scale war with Russia" while seeking to justify martial law.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I would almost be willing to bet real money, that this development is not mentioned in the news of the Corporate Presstitutes; in fact, I would suggest that they are attempting to suppress the story the best they can.

It is quarter of 9 here on Oahu; I will be looking at what the 9 AM feed on Faux News looks like.

But if they are not doing the story, that would definitely suggest that their Corporate masters have told them not to say a word on this, until they have figured out how to "sell" a potentially coming war with the US, Ukraine and NATO on one side, and Russia and China on the other.

Nov 28 11:30

Putin: "We Aren't Aiming To Ditch The Dollar, The Dollar Is Ditching Us"

With a number of volatile trends in multiple conflict theaters and geopolitical hot spots now coming to a head this week (Ukraine-Russia, China-US, Iran-US, Turkey-Syria-Russia, Saudi Arabia-Europe), and with Presidents Putin and Trump set to meet at the G20 summit in Argentina in just days, Putin has again signaled Russia will move away from the U.S. dollar.

Speaking before the VTB Capital forum in Moscow on Wednesday, Putin wryly explained that by implementing sanctions on Russia and other countries Washington is effectively "shooting itself not in the foot but a bit higher”.

He said, according to Bloomberg, "We aren't aiming to ditch the dollar. The dollar is ditching us." Making the case that aggressive US punitive measures against its rivals is undermining confidence in the dollar, Putin explained:

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This guy is always 1000 chess moves ahead, when it comes to US/Russian and world economic dealings.

And you cannot disrespect his sense of humor,as to the analogy he uses, here.

Nov 28 11:28

Germany offers to mediate between Russia and Ukraine

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas has said Germany could mediate between Ukraine and Russia in the ongoing crisis in the Sea of Azov. But some critics in Germany are calling on Berlin to help Kyiv militarily.

Nov 28 11:21

Ukraine Provocation in the Black Sea Directed against Russia. Was it a Staged Event?

Ukraine is a virtual US colony – the way it’s been since the Obama regime’s February 2014 coup, replacing democratic governance with fascist tyranny in Europe’s heartland.

Ukraine shares a near-1,500 mile land and sea border with the Russian Federation, the longest Western frontier with the country.

The regime running things is a hotbed of militarized extremism, waging war on its own people, committing appalling human rights abuses – with full support and encouragement from Washington and key NATO countries.

Stop NATO’s Rick Rozoff earlier explained that Ukraine is “the decisive linchpin in plans by the US and its NATO allies to effect a military cordon sanitaire, severing Russia from Europe” – part of a sinister plot, risking East/West confrontation.

Vladimir Putin earlier said

“(t)he appearance on our borders of a powerful military bloc…will be considered by Russia as a direct threat to our country’s security,” adding:

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This could potentially get very ugly, and very quickly; demonization of a country, coupled with sanctions against it, are usually a prelude to war.

Nov 28 10:44

US Military Says It Can’t Take Out Remaining ISIS Fighters Because They’re Hiding In Tunnels

As 2018 draws to a close, it is unclear if U.S. troops and their Arab-Kurdish allies have made a dent in ISIS’ last stronghold in Syria.

A spokesman for U.S. military operations in Iraq and Syria estimated in December 2017 that fewer than 3,000 ISIS fighters remained in both countries. Since then, defense officials have said consistently that roughly 2,000 ISIS fighters are trapped in Syria’s Middle Euphrates River Valley.

Army Col. Sean Ryan, a spokesman for Operation Inherent Resolve, repeated the 2,000 figure when briefing reporters on Tuesday. However, it is difficult to determine exactly how many ISIS fighters remain in their last enclave in Syria because they are dug in deeply and the terrain is difficult for combat operations, he said.

“The numbers game is difficult to count because ISIS is underground – they’re in tunnels; they’re hiding,” Ryan said. “So it’s not like we watch them walk into to a building and we’re counting as they go in. They’re spread apart.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This response, is Orwellian double-speak, writ large.

IF the US military knows where these tunnels are, why do they not then blow them up?!?

Perhaps because they want to "save and groom" these US-funded and equipped forces to fight another day?!?

Nov 28 10:23

Ukraine’s President Warns of Threat of ‘Full-Scale War’ With Russia

Since the 2014 Ukrainian revolution, top Ukrainian politicians have talked up the threat of an imminent, full-scale war in Russia. Years later, this continues to get raised every time a tense moment with Russia erupts.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is now citing Sunday’s maritime incident in the Sea of Azov, and says “Ukraine is under threat of full-scale war with Russia,” claiming Russia had massively increased the number of troops and tanks on their border.

He claims to have intelligence reports on the military buildup, but offered no details. It would be strange for Russia to precipitously escalate their presence at the border, given Ukraine is much weaker militarily, and the eastern border includes an ethnic Russian separatist region of Ukraine.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Since he came to power in 2014, Poroshenko has always been screaming about an imminent Russian invasion; and of course, it hasn't happened to date.

And again, in his leitmotif about being "under threat", there is utterly no proof of that being the case.

This, truly, is "the boy who cried wolf" once too often.

Nov 28 09:20

Trump May Not Have Meeting With Putin at G20 Over Kerch Strait Incident

US President Donald Trump said in an interview that he may cancel his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the upcoming G20 over the Kerch Strait incident.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mr. President, you are thoroughly and entirely wrong, and behaving in a wretchedly child-like manner, not to meet Putin because of this incident; in fact, you two gentlemen need to be meeting and speaking far more frequently than I fear you do.

And on top of Porochenko's statement about the incident, he said that NATO had a complete and clear understanding of what was going to happen; that means that the US' s High Command attache to NATO.... also knew.

In this incident, from everything I have read, the Russia Navy Vessel was absolutely in the right, and it was the Ukrainians who were in the wrong, in terms of establish Maritime law.

You need, sir, to look closely at these articles, to understand what was really going on here:

Ukrainian boats had intelligence agents on board.

Ukraine provokes Russia; to what end?!?

And here'a another interesting twist, from radiofreeeurope.com:

Ukrainians to consider martial law proposal after russia opens fire on ships in Black Sea

And here is one tidbit which the other articles I have read, didn't say:
"Lawmakers also stated that the next presidential election in Ukraine will take place on March 31, 2019."

Stating.... is not a constitutional vote, even for the Ukrainian parliament, which will have to vote its approval formally

And Mr. President, in case none of your "advisors" have "advised" you on this; Ukrainian national elections are supposed to take place on 30 March 2019. By declaring Martial Law, the approval for the election cannot get held by the necessary deadline, 21 December, by Ukraine's Parliament, meaning: the Ukrainian election will be postponed, as Poroshenko is in "deep kim chee" (sorry, a heap of trouble), and it does not look as though, right now, that he would be re-elected.

Timing of any "geopolitical outrage" always has something against which the creator of that outrage wants people to ignore, as in the "misdirection" magicians use in magic; this time, it is the postponement of the Ukrainian election, as Poroshenko understands that he is in no position to win, even with a massive ballot stuffing campaign.

Nov 28 09:01

 HOW THE US USES THE "LEFTIST" MEK GROUP FOR SOFT AGGRESSION AGAINST IRAN

WASHINGTON’S PULLING OUT OF THE IRAN NUCLEAR DEAL AND SUBSEQUENTLY RENEWED SANCTIONS COME AS US NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISOR APPOINTEE JOHN BOLTON’S EXISTENTIAL OBJECTIVE TO DESTROY IRAN BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY EVEN IF IT MEANS LEVERAGING THE SOFT POWER OF A CULTISH DEATH SQUAD.

US President Donald Trump ramped up the threat with a Game of Thrones meme warning Iran, with a November 5 deadline, that “Sanctions are Coming.” Qasem Soleimani, a Major General in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, responded with a meme of his own that Friday with the message “I will stand against you.”

More than just rhetoric, the exchange signified the high pomp the mention of sanctions posted to the Islamic Republic following an extensive international campaign by the US and Iranian expat and separatist allies to maximize their impacts.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The problem here is, that if the sanctions, and the actions of MEK, do not create "regime change", or "regime behaviour", however you want to say it, the US is looking at slogging toward a war against Iran; this will most likely mean a war against Russia, as Iran and Russia have an old, productive, and stable relationship, just as Russia has had with Syria.

One can see, very clearly, how Russia aided its friend Syria, by assisting to get out the jihadis, many of whom were trained and funded by the US; I would sincerely doubt that would change, if there is an attack on Iran, and you would see Putin rush to Iran's aid militarily in a heartbeat, at that point.

The US military doesn't have the troop strength; the manufacturing; the money; or the weaponry to guarantee a positive outcome to a conventional war against Russia and Iran.

Of course, neither Sheldon Adelson nor Bibi Netanyahu are very concerned about it; after all, they fully are on board the position of the costs of such a war, both in blood and money, will fully be paid by the US government.

Oh, and BTW; don't be startled, if after the turn of the year, there is a return to the draft for this country, to get the numbers up.

Nov 28 07:23

By undermining Russia's use of dollar US 'shooting itself not in the foot but a bit higher' - Putin

The Russian president called on the United States to abandon the policy of unilateral sanctions and seek common ground.

“We are not setting the target of moving away from the dollar – the dollar is moving away from us, and those who take respective (sanctions) decisions are shooting themselves not just in the foot, but slightly higher, as such instability in calculations in dollars creates a desire of many global economies to find alternative reserve currencies and create settlement systems independent of the dollar,” Putin said.

Nov 28 07:21

‘Kiev would get away even with eating babies’: Putin says Kerch Strait standoff is a provocation

“The authorities in Kiev are selling anti-Russian sentiment with quite a success today. They have nothing else to do,” Putin said during a business forum in Moscow.

The Russian president said it seemed like Kiev could get away with anything as far as foreign nations supporting Ukraine’s anti-Russian stance were concerned.

If they demand babies for breakfast, they would probably be served babies. They’d say: ‘Why not, they are hungry, what is to be done about it?’ This is such a shortsighted policy and it cannot have a good outcome. It makes the Ukrainian leadership complacent, gives them no incentive to do normal political work in their country or pursue a normal economic policy.

Nov 28 06:09

Moscow Not ‘Abandoning’ Greenback, Its Dollar That’s ‘Abandoning’ Russia

Moscow is not setting the target of abandoning the dollar, President Vladimir Putin said at the VTB Capital Investment Forum "Russia Calling!" on Wednesday, adding that the US currency is itself losing its assets.

"We are not setting the target of moving away from the dollar - the dollar is moving away from us, and those who take respective (sanctions) decisions are shooting themselves not even in the foot, but slightly higher, as such instability in calculations in dollars creates a desire of many global economies to find alternative reserve currencies and create settlement systems independent of the dollar," he stated, TASS reported.

Putin has called on the United States to abandon the policy of unilateral sanctions and seek common ground.

"What advice can be offered here?...>>> "

Nov 28 05:29

Trump Admin Mum on Syria “Rebel” Chemical Attack in Aleppo

On Saturday evening, a barrage of mortars filled with chemical weapons was launched into Syrian government-controlled territory in the Aleppo province by “rebels” linked to al Qaeda in the nearby Idlib province.

The attack – which was confirmed by both pro-government and pro-opposition sources – left over 100 civilians hospitalized after the gas released by the mortars caused “difficulty breathing, eye inflammation, shivering and fainting,” according to the head of the Aleppo Doctors Syndicate, Zaher Batal, as cited by Reuters. Batal and other Aleppo doctors suspect that chlorine gas was the substance responsible for the symptoms of those affected.

Despite the fact that chemical weapons were used by al Qaeda-linked militants in Idlib, the U.S. government and its allies have thus far been silent about the recent attack, even though the incident was covered by mainstream Western outlets such as CNN and Reuters. Instead, the U.S. announced a UN Security Council meeting — not to denounce the chemical-weapons attacks launched against civilians by an internationally recognized terror group but to address the recent hostilities between Russia and Ukraine over Crimea.

>>>

(*No Brainer: CNN & Reuters made the whole thing up , to continue the world renouned tradition of MADE IN THE U.S.A. Fake NEWS )

Lavrov: Washington doesn’t seek objective investigation on use of chemical weapons in Syria

Nov 28 04:59

Russia Is Disadvantaged by Her Belief that the West Is Governed by Law

Paul Craig Roberts
***
By trusting that there is a rule of law in the West, the Russian government is digging Russia’s grave while it allows Washington’s Ukrainian Nazis to murder Russian people. The Russian government is discrediting itself by trusting US vassals, such as Germany, to enforce the Minsk agreement and, despite all evidence to the contrary, believing that there is a rule of law in the West. Russia continues, year after year, to appeal to this non-existent entity called the Western Rule of Law.

This policy reassures the Zionist Neoconservatives who rule Washington’s foreign policy that Russia is incapable of defending its interests

>>>

Nov 27 12:06

US Envoy: US, Russian Forces Have Clashed a Dozen Times in Syria

Speaking to Russian reporters, US Ambassador James Jeffrey, the special representative for the Syrian War, was asked to comment on incidents in which US troops killed large numbers of Russian military contractors working for the Syrian government. Jeffrey refused to offer details of that incident, but revealed that US and Russian forces have gotten into around a dozen clashes inside Syria over the course of the war, sometimes with direct exchanges of gunfire. Jeffrey further insisted that all the US troops in Syria are “legitimately” there to fight against ISIS, and that all the fighting against Russia was in keeping with the US “right of self-defense.” Russia has not commented on the engagements. Perhaps the most curious aspect of all of this is that, other than the incident in which the US killed all of the Russian contractors, these direct confrontations have largely gone unreported.

Nov 27 11:55

Mixed Messages: U.S Urges Ukraine And Russia Leaders To Resolve Kerch Strait Issues Directly, While NATO Lends ‘Unconditional Support’

The United States urged Russia and Ukraine leaders to work urgently to resolve the current disagreement between the two countries, triggered by an invasion of Ukrainian ships into Russian territorial waters last weekend. “We call on both parties to exercise restraint and abide by their international obligations and commitments. We urge Presidents Poroshenko and Putin to engage directly to resolve this situation. In that regard, we reiterate our support for the Normandy Four format,” Pompeo said in a press statement on November 26. However, Ukrainian media has been carrying the line that NATO issued a statement giving unconditional support to Ukraine, amidst in the deteriorating situation in the Azov Sea and Russian actions in the Kerch Strait. The NATO comments come from spokesperson Oana Lungescu in a commentary for Evropeyska Pravda. Lungescu here stressed that NATO is closely monitoring developments in the Azov Sea and the Kerch Strait.

Nov 27 11:26

Russian Warships Again Refueling in NATO Spain. The Russians are back after 2 years

Three Russian warships docked to refuel in Ceuta, a Spanish port enclave in northeast Africa, after a long absence. The guided-missile cruiser Marshal Ustinov, tanker Dubna and tug SB-406 were authorised to re-fuel and re-supply by Spanish authorities. In 2016, Russia had rescinded its right to dock ships in Ceuta after NATO allies complained that the Russian military had targeted “civilians” in Syria, a claim which Russia denied. Russian outlet Sputnik reported that Nile Gardiner, a British political pundit, called it “a knife in the back for the NATO alliance”, because of Spain’s decision to allow three Russian warships to dock, three days after the visit of Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov to Madrid. Similarly, Luke Coffey, a US political adviser, called Madrid’s move “the height of irresponsibility”, to allow Russia into the fold of Western nations, according to Sputnik. Official Spanish logs show that Russian warships docked in Ceuta 60 times between 2010 and 2016.

Nov 27 11:17

Russia develops mobile super-computer for defense industry

Ruselectronics Group (part of the state hi-tech corporation Rostec) has developed a mobile super-computer with a capacity of 2.2 petaflops that can find applications in the defense and space industries, the Rostec press office reported on Friday. "The 1.9x1.35x1m computing module allows reaching a record peak capacity of 2.2 petaflops for computers of such dimensions and a data storage volume of up to 2.2 petabytes," Rostec said. As the state hi-tech corporation noted, "organizations of the defense sector and the space industry, technological parks, research institutes and educational institutions are among potential customers of the new product." The super-computer has a system of liquid cooling (its blocs are immersed into a special container), which "allows creating mobile computer centers based on standard container platforms outside specially equipped premises," the press office said.

Nov 27 11:10

Russia’s Pacific Fleet ships arrive on visit to Singapore

Today the Pacific Fleet’s task force, consisting of the Order of Nakhimov guards missile cruiser Varyag, the large anti-submarine ship Admiral Panteleyev and the Boris Butoma large sea tanker - made a business call to the Changi naval base in line with the long voyage plan. During the visit, the sides will hold a joint meeting on the issues related to the ship’s logistical support. Later on Tuesday, Russia’s Ambassador to Singapore Andrei Tatarinov will visit the ships. The ships’ command is later expected to meet with Singapore’s Navy commander and the city mayor.

Nov 27 11:00

Russia’s FSB makes public list of weapons found onboard detained Ukrainian warships

Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) on Tuesday made public the list of weapons seized from the Ukrainian warships that were detained while trying to illegally pass via the Kerch Strait. Thus, according to the FSB, the ships were equipped with four 30mm guns, four AGS-17 automatic grenade launchers and four PKT machineguns (one 30mm gun, an AGS-17 grenade launcher and a PKT machinegun constitute an artillery system, thus each boat had two such systems). Apart from that, the list of weapons found onboard the ships includes two 12.7mm DShK machineguns, 13 AK-47 submachine guns, four handguns, a rubber-bullet gun, a flare gun, more than 765 high-explosive fragmentation shells of the 30mm caliber, as many as 1,975 charges to the VOG-17 grenade launcher and 495 charges to the VOG grenade launcher, 40 RG-42 hand grenades, 20 RGD grenades, a great number of munitions, and 15 knife byonets...

Nov 27 10:43

Ukraine security chief admits intel agents were on board Navy ships during Kerch standoff

Ukrainian Navy ships which entered Russian waters off Crimea’s shores had counterintelligence officers on board, Kiev’s security service confirmed.

Vasily Gritsak, head of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU), confirmed that counterintelligence officers were on the ships which entered Russian waters in the Kerch Strait on Sunday.

Nov 27 08:05

Russian large anti-submarine ship enters Pakistan’s port of Karachi

A group of ships of the Northern Fleet led by the Severomorsk large anti-submarine ship entered the port of Karachi in Pakistan while implementing its long-voyage tasks, the fleet’s press service reported on Tuesday. "The program of the unofficial visit, that will last a few days, includes social events with participation of the command of the group of the Northern Fleet ships and the command of the Pakistan Navy, and the attendance by the Russian sailors of the international exhibition of weapons and military equipment IDEAS-2018," the press service reported. During anchorage at the port of Karachi the Russian large anti-submarine ship will also replenish fuel, water and food supplies. The crew will have a short rest ashore and visit local places of interest. It is not the first visit of Russian sailors to the port of Karachi.

Nov 27 07:44

Arrested Ukrainian navy man admits Kerch incident was provocation

Russia's FSB published a video of the interrogation of Vladimir Lesovoy, a third rank captain of the Ukrainian Navy, who acknowledged that he consciously ignored calls from Russian border guards to stop. Lesovoy also said that the goal of the raid was to stage a provocation. Other questioned Ukrainian navy men, in particular, Lieutenant Alexey Drach, confirmed that he and his colleagues had been warned that they were violating the maritime border of the Russian Federation. Vasily Gritsak, the chief of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU), confirmed that there were SBU military counterintelligence officers on board the Ukrainian vessels, which Russia detained in the Kerch Strait on November 25. "Officers of Ukrainian special services were providing counterintelligence support for the Ukrainian Navy group in accordance with Article 12 of the law "About the Security Service of Ukraine," Gritsak said...

Nov 27 07:31

Yulia Tymoshenko: Ukrainians flee the country in panic

The number of Ukrainians who have left to work testifies to the massive and panic escape from the country, Yulia Tymoshenko, the leader of Batkivshchyna (Fatherland) Party, said at the presentation of the "New Social Doctrine." Tymoshenko noted that there was a shortage of labor force in Ukraine. The number of Ukrainians going abroad is a threat to national security, she said. "This is no longer work tourism - this is massive and panic escape of people from their country," said Tymoshenko. In August, Tymoshenko said that the Ukrainian economy was still afloat owing to money transfers, which Ukrainian citizens, who left to work to foreign countries, send back to their families. According to her, labor migrants from Ukraine brought the country €5 billion in 2018. As many as five million Ukrainians were working outside Ukraine in 2017, a report from the State Employment Service said. As many as 1.7 million people decided to look for a job in Poland.

Nov 27 07:29

Anti-Russia Ukraine Provocation

Ukraine is a virtual US colony - the way it's been since the Obama regime's February 2014 coup, replacing democratic governance with fascist tyranny in Europe's heartland. Ukraine shares a near-1,500 mile land and sea border with the Russian Federation, the longest Western frontier with the country... Stop NATO's Rick Rozoff earlier explained that Ukraine is "the decisive linchpin in plans by the US and its NATO allies to effect a military cordon sanitaire, severing Russia from Europe" - part of a sinister plot, risking East/West confrontation. Vladimir Putin earlier said "(t)he appearance on our borders of a powerful military bloc...will be considered by Russia as a direct threat to our country's security," adding: Russian missiles will target Ukraine if it joins NATO or allows Washington's (solely for offense) missile defense shield to be installed in the country...

Nov 27 05:37

Who Says Economic Sanctions Work?

One need only to look at North Korea and Iraq to see that the new oil embargo on Iran will fail too.
***
Not surprising, sanctions have rarely—if ever—succeeded in obtaining their desired results. The poster child for successful sanctions as a vehicle for change—divestment in South Africa during the 1980s in opposition to the Apartheid regime—is in reality a red herring. The South Africa sanctions were in fact counterproductive, in so far as they prompted even harsher policies from the South African government. The demise of Apartheid came about largely because the Soviet Union collapsed, meaning the South African government was no longer needed in the fight against communism.

Another myth that has arisen around sanctions is their utility in addressing nonproliferation issues. Since 1994, the U.S. has promulgated non-proliferation sanctions under the guise of executive orders signed by the president or statutes passed by Congress. But there is no evidence that sanctions implemented under these authorities have meaningfully altered the behaviors that they target.>>>

Nov 26 18:21

Election ploy? Poroshenko declares martial law in Ukraine after Kerch standoff

It’s important to remember that this dramatic move of declaring martial law was not even considered in 2014 and 2015, during the bloodiest periods of fighting in eastern Ukraine. Though Poroshenko was claiming at the time that thousands of Russian troops and hundreds of Russian tanks had invaded his country, that still didn’t merit imposing martial law.

Yet now, in response to a relatively minor incident, by comparison, Kiev has decided to take that step. As such, the most important question being raised by analysts skeptical of the narrative from Kiev is, why?

The answer many are coming up with is simple but highly plausible: The standoff between the Ukrainian and Russian ships could have been a planned provocation – a domestic ploy aimed at swinging a potentially unwinnable election.

Nov 26 17:22

Ukraine Provokes Russia to What End?

By Tony Cartalucci

Russia has seized three Ukrainian military vessels violating its territory near Russia’s newly completed Crimean Bridge. The incident is a clear provocation carried out by Kiev and possibly engineered by Kiev’s Western sponsors – particularly those in Washington and London.

Ukrainian military vessels are in fact permitted to pass from the Black Sea into the Sea of Azov provided they notify Russian authorities beforehand. The Sea of Azov – according to a joint agreement signed by Kiev and Moscow in 2003 – is considered internal waters of both Ukraine and Russia.

With the completion of the Crimean Bridge connecting Russian Crimea to the rest of Russian territory across the Strait of Kerch, security measures have understandably increased...

Nov 26 14:33

UKRAINE SAILOR ADMITS: We deliberately provoked the Russians! PHOTO, VIDEO

The Russian Federal Security Service has said that there is indisputable evidence that Kiev prepared and conducted a provocation carried out by the Ukrainian army in the Black Sea basin.
The Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) said it had examined Ukrainian sailors detained after an incident in the Kerkyard Sea.

On that occasion, the Ukrainian officer Vladimir Lesovoj admitted that the actions that the Ukrainian sailors carried out had a provocative character.
"We deliberately ignored the demands to stop. On our ships there were firearms, as well as machine guns with ammunition, "he said.

Lesovo also added that as an "official person he fulfilled the order and planned to carry out the transfer of the people from the port of Odessa to the port of Mariupol.

Nov 26 12:21

Russia And Ukraine Are On The Brink Of War – And Why That Could Lead To World War 3

This article was originally published by Michael Snyder at The Economic Collapse

A respected foreign journalist living in Ukraine is warning that a war that most Americans cannot even imagine “teeters on the razor thin edge of becoming real”. When Russia opened fire on Ukrainian Navy vessels and captured three of their ships, it made headlines all over the globe. An emergency meeting of the UN Security Council was hastily arranged for Monday at 11 AM, and hopefully there will be a positive outcome from that meeting. Because right now Moscow and Kiev are on the brink of war, and once a Russian invasion happens there will be no turning back. At that point the U.S. would have a major decision to make, and if we chose to defend Ukraine that could mean that we would suddenly find ourselves fighting World War 3.

Most people don’t realize that this crisis has been simmering for over a week. The following is from a U.S. News & World Report article that was posted on November 19th…

Nov 26 12:14

Ukrainian Forces Pound Donbass Residential Area with Heavy Artillery

The Ukrainian army on Sunday opened up with massive artillery fire, shelling residential areas of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic (DPR), an RIA Novosti correspondent has reported.

The shelling began at about 19:50 GMT, according to the correspondent. The Ukrainian army is using various weapons, including heavy artillery.

Nov 26 12:12

Kiev Radicals Throw Smoke Flares at Russian Embassy Amid Kerch Strait Incident

Earlier in the day, media reported that some radical activists had brought tires and paper ships to the main entrance of the Russian embassy.

According to the broadcast of the 112 Ukraine channel, radicals threw smoke bombs and smoke flares at the Russian Embassy in Kiev. Law enforcement officers are working at the scene, in particular, Kiev police chief Andriy Kryschenko arrived there.

Nov 26 12:11

Strategic Waterways and “The Kerch Strait Incident”: Towards Military Escalation?

Are we gearing towards a Kerch Strait Incident, namely a “Pretext” which could potentially lead to armed conflict?
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In response to these events, the Ukrainian armed forces have been put on full combat alert, in consultation with NATO. The adoption of martial law was put forth by President Poroshenko (to be debated in the Kiev parliament)
Meanwhile Moscow has called for the convening of an emergency UN Security council meeting. According to the Guardian

“Russia’s foreign ministry has accused Ukraine of coordinating with the US and the EU in a “planned provocation” aimed at securing further sanctions against Moscow, as tensions mount after a dangerous clash between the two countries. (Guardian, 26, November 2018)

We are at a dangerous crossroads. Will the Kerch Straits Incident lead to a process of military escalation?!?

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The most discomfiting thing about this, so far, is Ukraine's having done this "with full NATO consultations."

Nov 26 12:09

Ukraine says Russia opened fire on its naval vessels, seized them

The Ukrainian military said Sunday that Russian boats opened fire on and seized three of its ships near Crimea, escalating a standoff over the Kerch Strait, a key waterway that holds strategic importance for both countries.

The incident marks a major escalation in tensions between the two former Soviet Republics. On Monday, Ukrainian lawmakers will vote on whether to declare martial law, following a proposal by the country's President Petro Poroshenko. An emergency United Nations Security Council meeting has been called for Monday to discuss the issue.

In a statement, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense said the small gunboats Berdyansk and Nikopol and the tugboat Yana Kapu were attacked.
Six of its sailors were injured in the incident, Ukraine's navy said, adding the tugboat and the Berdyansk were disabled by Russian forces and were being towed away by the Russian navy. The undamaged Nikopol also is under Russian control, Ukraine said.

Nov 26 12:08

Ukraine To Impose Martial Law After Russia "Fires At Ukraine Ships", Seizes Three Vessels Off Crimea

A UN Security Council meeting has been called for 11am tomorrow after Ukraine incident with Russia, US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley said in a tweet.

Nov 26 11:43

Russia Blocks Ukrainian Navy From Militarizing The Sea of Azov - Updated

The Ukrainian government under the oligarch Petro Poroshenko is in election campaign mode. That is one reason why it is launching new provocations against Russia. Yesterday Ukrainian forces reportedly occupied a town within the neutral zone between the government controlled part and the rebel held Donetsk area. Today the Ukrainian navy sent a tug and two small gun boats, recently acquired from the U.S. Coast Guard, Ukrainian build Gurza-M class types, to pass through the Kerch Strait into the Sea of Azov.

When the ships entered Russian waters without announcing their intent, a Russian coast guard ship rammed (vid) and damaged the tug. The two gun boats escaped but did not pass the strait. The pictures show the melee at sea.

Nov 26 11:38

Ukraine’s army put on full combat alert - Defense Ministry

The Ukrainian armed forces have been put on full combat alert by the decision of the chief of the country’s General Staff, the press service of Ukraine’s Defense Ministry reported on Monday.

"In accordance with the National Security and Defense Council’s decision on imposing martial law, the chief of the General Staff and commander-in-chief of Ukraine’s armed forces ordered to put the Ukrainian armed forces’ units on full combat alert," the press service said.

Due to the situation in the Kerch Strait, National Security and Defense Council Secretary Alexander Turchinov earlier voiced the initiative on imposing martial law in the country for 60 days backed by the Ukrainian president. Now this bill is to be considered by Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada (parliament). According to its speaker Andrei Parubiy, its meeting will be convened on Monday at 16:00 local time (17:00 Moscow time).

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Translation: Poroshenko is using this incident to put off elections, which must be voted upon by its Parliament no later than 21 December. The timing means that the elections cannot be held at the end of March, for their Parliament to vote on in by 21 December.

But the larger matter is, if in fact Ukraine declares war on Russia, ( a quite idiotic thing for Ukraine to do, BTW), but if that happens, please ,where does it put US military assistance to Kiev?!?

Nov 26 11:29

Russia and Ukraine clash in Kerch Strait off Crimea. Ukrainian navy men wounded

Officials with the Federal Security Bureau of Russia said that Russian border guards detained three ships of the Ukrainian Navy as the latter were trying to travel across the Black Sea from the port of Odessa to the port of Mariupol in the Sea of ??Azov. The Ukrainian warships committed a number of provocative acts, FSB officials said.

Russian warships and boats of the Black Sea Fleet were escorting the Ukrainian ships and asking them to stop. However, the commanders of the Ukrainian ships ignored the requests. Russia was forced to use weapons to stop the Ukrainian vessels. As a result, three Ukrainian ships were detained. Three Ukrainian navy men were wounded in the incident. They received medical assistance, their lives are out of danger, FSB officials said.

Nov 26 11:24

RUSSIA-UKRAINE BLACK SEA MILITARY CRISIS: ON THE BRINK OF WAR

On November 25, the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) Border Service was forced to open fire on and damage Ukrainian warships, which were carrying out hostile actions and advancing in Russian territorial waters in the Black Sea off Crimea.

After the short close-quarter firefight, two Ukrainian ships were taken towed and one ship escorted by Russian forces to the Russian port of Kerch. The Ukrainian side said that 6 service members had been injured in the incident. The Russian side says that 3 Ukrainian servicemen had been slightly injured. They received medical help and there is no threat to their lives.

The data available from both sides, Ukrainian and Russian, demonstrates that the Ukrainian warships intentionally entered Russian territorial waters and were moving more deeply into them. Such a military action with the to be expected loud political coverage is not possible without a direct order from the Ukrainian top military-political leadership.

Nov 26 11:23

UKRAINE DECLARES MARTIAL LAW AS RUSSIA REFUSES TO RELEASE CAPTURED SHIPS

Seemingly out of nowhere, a diplomatic crisis has erupted between Ukraine and Russia after Russia detained three Ukrainian ships which it said had been "maneuvering dangerously" near the Kerch Strait - a crucial choke point controlled by Russia which separates the Sea of Azov From the Black Sea. In response to what he decried as unprovoked Russian aggression, increasingly unpopular Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed a declaration on Monday to declare martial law for 60 days through Jan. 26. He also started mobilizing the Ukrainian army despite the martial law order still needing approval by the country's Parliament, according to RT.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This issue of "martial law" will most probably extend well into the next election cycle, meaning that it has been engineered by Poroshenko to prevent the elections from being held at all.

Google states: "Thus, the 2019 Ukrainian presidential election should take place on 31 March 2019. The Ukrainian parliament must approve the date of the presidential election no later than 100 days before the election day. For the election to take place on the above-mentioned date they must do this before 21 December 2018."

However, if no meeting of the Ukrainian Parliament can happen 100 days before the election, before 21 December, 2018, the election cannot be approved of, or held.

Poroshenko is in really bad shape in the national polls, and this is why this "encounter" was engineered; the placement of Martial Law ahead of an election which might possibly be his last.

Kolomoisky rules out Poroshenko's 2019 election win.

Nov 26 11:04

Russia Blocks Ukrainian Navy From Militarizing The Sea of Azov - Updated

The Ukrainian government under the oligarch Petro Poroshenko is in election campaign mode. That is one reason why it is launching new provocations against Russia. Yesterday Ukrainian forces reportedly occupied a town within the neutral zone between the government controlled part and the rebel held Donetsk area. Today the Ukrainian navy sent a tug and two small gun boats, recently acquired from the U.S. Coast Guard, Ukrainian build Gurza-M class types, to pass through the Kerch Strait into the Sea of Azov.

When the ships entered Russian waters without announcing their intent, a Russian coast guard ship rammed (vid) and damaged the tug. The two gun boats escaped but did not pass the strait. The pictures show the melee at sea.

Nov 26 10:55

Last chance to stay in power? Ukrainian President Poroshenko signs decree on martial law

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has imposed martial law after the country’s vessels faced off with Russian ships near Crimea. The measure could potentially allow him to call off scheduled elections and preserve power.

Martial law is scheduled to be in place from November 26 to January 26. It still requires final approval from Ukraine’s parliament, the Verkhovna Rada. However, the Ukrainian General Staff was already tasked with beginning partial troop mobilization, according to media reports.

The Ukrainian army was put on full combat alert even before the martial law was declared.

The Rada is expected to vote on the motion later on Monday. However, Poroshenko revealed that he actually brought martial law into force ahead of its approval by parliament, starting from November 28. With that, the president also warned about a “serious threat” of a “ground invasion” of Ukraine, citing a “secret intelligence document.”

Nov 26 10:39

EU-WIDE ‘ANTI-RUSSIAN PSY-OPS’ PROGRAM CONFIRMS UK GOVT FUNDING, ANONYMOUS DENIES LEAK

A network exposed by leaked documents as a Europe-wide PR operation aimed at curbing “Russian propaganda” has confirmed receiving money from the British government, while Anonymous has denied on Twitter that it’s behind the leak.
The Integrity Initiative (II) is a network claiming to fight disinformation that threatens democracy. A trove of alleged II documents, which purports to show costs and internal guidelines as well as names of individuals cooperating with it, has been published by people claiming to be part of the Anonymous collective. A major Anonymous-linked Twitter account has denied it was linked to the leak.

Responding to the leak on Monday, the organization said it did indeed receive funding from the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) for the past two years, but insisted that private donors were its primary source of money.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Color me unsurprised by this revelation.

But the one thing I can tell you, watching the unfolding of these horrific, US generated wars. (allegedly on Terror, but actually against the people who have the nerve to live over those resources the US and EU very much want to "liberate") ,is that kind of demonization, coupled with sanctions against said countries, means war is coming.

That incident yesterday, regarding Ukraine patrol boats, seized by the Russians, out of international waters, is a case in point, followed by the histrionics delivered by Nikki Haley at the UN's emergency session today, today, are a very good example of this kind of demonization.

And the other thing most presstitutes did NOT choose to cover, was extensive shelling, by the Ukrainian military, in Donbass yesterday.

Nov 26 09:06

Tensions escalate after Russia fires on and seizes Ukrainian ships

Russia says it has seized three Ukrainian ships after they illegally entered its territor

Nov 26 08:49

Germany, China seek to defuse Kerch Strait tensions, as Austria worries over impact on Ukraine vote

The German Foreign Minister has urged Russia and Ukraine to defuse tensions after their naval clash off the Crimean coast. Austria said that Kiev imposing martial law was a “worrying” step ahead of Ukraine’s presidential vote.

A brief but intense standoff between Ukrainian Navy ships and the Russian coast guard off the Crimean coast was an “alarming” event, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said. He called upon both sides to de-escalate tensions, while also criticizing Moscow for what he called “a blockade of a passageway to the Azov Sea.”

Speaking in Madrid, Maas also said that Germany and France could play the role of “mediators” between Russia and Ukraine “in case of need.” Berlin and Paris are ready to jointly step in at a diplomatic level to prevent “this conflict from exacerbating any further,” he said.

Nov 26 08:32

Russian Consulate territory ON FIRE as protesters pelt it with flares in Kharkov (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

Fire has broken out at the Russian consulate in the northeastern city of Kharkov as anti-Russia protesters threw flares and burned tires in front of the building.

Scores descended on the Russian diplomatic facility on Kharkov, Ukraine, on Monday, one day after a tense standoff between the two countries’ navy occurred in the Back Sea.

Nov 26 08:31

UKRAINE DECLARES MARTIAL LAW AS RUSSIA REFUSES TO RELEASE CAPTURED SHIPS

Seemingly out of nowhere, a diplomatic crisis has erupted between Ukraine and Russia after Russia detained three Ukrainian ships which it said had been "maneuvering dangerously" near the Kerch Strait - a crucial choke point controlled by Russia which separates the Sea of Azov From the Black Sea. In response to what he decried as unprovoked Russian aggression, increasingly unpopular Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed a declaration on Monday to declare martial law for 60 days...

Nov 26 08:13

U.K. military head says Russia poses an even bigger threat than the Islamic State

The new leader of the United Kingdom’s army said that Russia is a bigger security threat than the Islamic State group (ISIS) in his first interview since becoming chief in June.

“Russia today indisputably represents a far greater threat to our national security than Islamic extremist threats such as al-Qaida and [ISIS],” Gen. Mark Carleton-Smith told the Daily Telegraph.
“Russia has demonstrated that it is prepared to use military force to secure and expand its national interest.”

Nov 26 04:02

Press review: Ukraine’s Kerch Strait provocation fails and Kiev picks new Normandy envoy

On the morning of November 25, three Ukrainian Navy ships illegally crossed the Russian border in the Kerch Strait area, violating international maritime law. The vessels that invaded the territorial waters of Russia have been detained, according to the FSB. Armed force was used in order to compel the ships to stop. In this case, the Russian side had every reason to provide such a response, military experts told Izvestia. To prevent repeated provocations in the region, unmanned aerial vehicles will be patrolling the state border, several sources in the Russian Defense Ministry told the newspaper... In accordance with international maritime law, Ukrainian ships may conduct peaceful passages through the territorial sea of Russia, but their passage must be continuous and quick.

Nov 26 03:56

Ukraine’s army put on full combat alert - Defense Ministry

The Ukrainian armed forces have been put on full combat alert by the decision of the chief of the country’s General Staff, the press service of Ukraine’s Defense Ministry reported on Monday. "In accordance with the National Security and Defense Council’s decision on imposing martial law, the chief of the General Staff and commander-in-chief of Ukraine’s armed forces ordered to put the Ukrainian armed forces’ units on full combat alert," the press service said. Due to the situation in the Kerch Strait, National Security and Defense Council Secretary Alexander Turchinov earlier voiced the initiative on imposing martial law in the country for 60 days backed by the Ukrainian president. Now this bill is to be considered by Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada (parliament). According to its speaker Andrei Parubiy, its meeting will be convened on Monday at 16:00 local time (17:00 Moscow time).

Nov 25 18:03

Russia may start free trade talks with South Korea

Negotiations on the implementation of a free trade zone agreement between Moscow and Seoul may start in 2019, according to South Korea’s ambassador in Moscow, Woo Yoon-keun.

Woo told TASS that “the documents have already been submitted to the parliament [of the Republic of Korea]... We hope that next year we will start intensive negotiations.”

An agreement on setting up a free trade zone between the countries was inked in June during the visit of South Korean President Moon Jae-in to Moscow.

Nov 25 18:01

Russia calling urgent UN Security Council meeting over clash with Ukrainian ships in Azov sea

Moscow is calling an emergency UN Security Council meeting following the incident near Crimea that saw the Russian military detain Ukrainian warships for breaking into its territorial waters in violation of the UN convention.

Russia has called for a meeting "in connection to the dangerous developments in the Azov sea and subsequent events,” Russia's First Deputy Permanent Representative at the UN, Dmitry Polyanskiy, told media late on Sunday.

The meeting is preliminarily scheduled for 11.00 am Monday New York time, he said. “Maintenance of international peace and security” will be the sole item on its agenda.

Nov 25 18:00

Russian ships used weapons to stop & seize Ukrainian vessels violating territorial waters – FSB

Russia has confirmed its vessels have used weapons to stop Ukrainian vessels that had entered Russian waters in the Black Sea illegally. Three Ukrainian sailors were wounded and have been given medical assistance.

Russia has fired at a group of three Ukrainian vessels that entered its territorial waters near Crimea, the Russian Security Service (FSB) has confirmed. The ships were then seized and will be towed to the Crimean port of Kerch.

Three Ukrainian sailors, injured in the altercation, were given medical assistance by Russian servicemen. Their lives are out of danger.

Nov 25 17:59

Ukraine to declare martial law after sea clash with Russia

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has said that he will propose declaring martial law in the wake of the altercation in the Black Sea that saw Russian military seize Ukrainian vessels for breaching Russian territorial waters.

The Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine (NSDC) has supported declaring martial law for 60 days. The motion will now go before the Ukrainian parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, for final approval.

The Ukrainian leader says Kiev does not plan to carry out any offensive operations if martial law is imposed.

Nov 24 10:18

Vladimir Putin hits out at 'WEAK and politically incompetent' US in scathing attack

VLADIMIR Putin hit out at the government of the United States, arguing that their decision-making is "weak" and "politically incompetent", a documentary has revealed.

Russian president Vladimir Putin spoke about his role in brokering agreements during the Syria crisis, in contrast to Western “incompetence". Appearing on "World Order 2018", he spoke about meeting with representatives from Iran and Turkey. In July 2018, the three countries met for two days of talks on issues related to the war in Syria.

Russian president Vladimir Putin spoke about his role in brokering agreements during the Syria crisis, in contrast to Western “incompetence". Appearing on "World Order 2018", he spoke about meeting with representatives from Iran and Turkey. In July 2018, the three countries met for two days of talks on issues related to the war in Syria.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

On the international stage, Putin comes off as a consummate statesman; in contrast, President Trump comes across as a bumbling, rambunctious fool, owned, simultaneously, by both Israel and Saudi Arabia.

That "ownership" cannot possibly be good for either the American people, or peace internationally.

Nov 23 11:59

Syria, A Frozen Conflict: The Final Push for Idlib Will Come Soon

The current truce is a strategic pause that has all the appearance of what has happened in the past in the provinces of Homs and Aleppo. The need to free Idlib from terrorists goes hand in hand with the promise of Assad and the government of Damascus to liberate every inch of Syria from terrorists. The diplomatic efforts of Moscow serve to prepare the ground for what will happen in the coming months, with the SAA set to advance on Idlib. In this sense, the deployment of advanced systems in Syria serves as a deterrent against possible responses from countries like Israel and the United States, anxious to defend their jihadists, but continuing to have minimal influence on the ground.

Nov 23 11:13

ESCOBAR: ERDOGAN, MBS, ISLAMIC LEADERSHIP, & THE PRICE OF SILENCE

The House of Saud's ties to the Khashoggi slaying are being milked by the Turkish President for maximum benefit amid debate on leadership of the Islamic world and how the crisis may affect US and Saudi strategy in the Middle East...

Call it the Gazprom double down. Nord Stream 1 and 2 supply northern Europe while TurkStream supplies southern Europe. Pipelines are steel umbilical cords. They represent liquid connectivity at its best while conclusively decreasing risks of geopolitical friction.

The Kremlin and the Russian Foreign Ministry are very much aware that the high-stakes game goes way beyond ‘Pulp Fiction’ in Istanbul and the Astana peace process on Syria – carefully micro-managed by both Putin and Erdogan alongside Iran’s Rouhani. The big prize is no less than the leadership of the Islamic world.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Putin, as usual, is no less than one thousand chess moves ahead of President Trump, in understanding how all this is going to be perceived globally, and how it can best benefit Russia and its allies.

Nov 22 11:51

Focus on precision: Putin urges ramping up of production of ‘smart’ missiles and artillery shells

Russia must ramp up production of high-precision missiles and artillery shells, President Vladimir Putin said. Smart munitions can do the job more effectively than their “dumb” counterparts – and even save on the costs.

“We definitely need, not the notorious ‘slugs’, but ‘smart’ and highly precise munitions instead, which expand the capabilities of both existing and prospective weapon systems, and, I stress, can save funds considerably,” Putin said on Thursday, speaking at a meeting with industry representatives and top military officers.

Nov 21 12:37

Russia Releases Video Showing New Su-57 Stealth Fighter In Syria Combat Mission

Eight years after its maiden voyage followed by February claims of a Syrian deployment, Russia's single-seat, twin-engine SU-57s fighter jet is finally ready for its close-up.

The planes, which flew a total of ten sorties, were pushed to the limit as the military wanted to see how they would perform during a real-life mission. The jets’ aerodynamics, avionics, fire control, and weapons systems were all put to test amid high temperatures and complicated terrain, the ministry said on Facebook. -RT

The Russian Defense Ministry, which has ordered 12 of the supersonic stealth jets to be delivered in 2019, has released footage of an Su-57 taking off from an undisclosed location presumed to be Khmeimim air base in north eastern Syria. The official release comes nine months after unverified photos and video footage emerged in February purporting to show the new fighter jet landing at Khmeimim.

Nov 21 12:15

More British troops to be deployed to Ukraine in face of threat from Russia, MoD to announce

Britain will increase military support for Ukraine as the country continues to face Russian aggression, the Defence Secretary will announce today.

Additional troops and a Royal Navy ship will be deployed to Ukraine to defend “freedom and democracy”.

Ukrainian Special Forces and Marines will be trained by British personnel and HMS Echo, a Royal Navy hydrographic survey ship with a company of 72, will deploy to the region.

“As long as Ukraine faces Russian hostilities, it will find a steadfast partner in the United Kingdom,” Defence Secretary, Gavin Williamson, will say.

Nov 21 12:13

UK to Send Marines, Warship to Ukraine for Sake of 'Democracy' - Reports

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson will reaffirm Britain’s commitment to Ukraine during a visit to Kiev.

The United Kingdom will ramp up its military assistance to Ukraine, deploying additional troops and a Royal Navy ship to defend 'freedom and democracy,' Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson will announce on Wednesday, The Telegraph wrote.

Ukrainian Special Forces and Marines will be trained by British personnel and HMS Echo, a Royal Navy hydrographic survey ship with a company of 72, will deploy to the region.

“As long as Ukraine faces Russian hostilities, it will find a steadfast partner in the United Kingdom,” Williamson will say.

Nov 21 11:52

Bipartisan Panel: US Must Prepare for 'Horrendous,' 'Devastating' War With Russia and China

A bipartisan commission appointed by Congress issued a lengthy report Tuesday backing the Pentagon’s plans to prepare for a “great-power” war against Russia, China, or both, making clear that the Trump administration’s belligerent policies are shared by the Democratic Party.

Safe in the knowledge that its findings will never be seriously reported by the mass media, the authors of this report do not mince words about what such a war will mean. A war between the United States and China, which according to the report might break out within four years, will be “horrendous” and “devastating.” The military will “face greater losses than at any time in decades.” Such a war could lead to “rapid nuclear escalation,” and American civilians will be attacked and likely killed.

Nov 21 11:48

EURASIAHEADLINE NEWSIshchenko: UKRAINE’S OPPOSITION PLANNING NEXT MAIDAN

In Ukraine, over twenty cities remained without heat supply. Mostly relatively small, up to one hundred thousand inhabitants, but also six hundred thousand in Krivoy Rog, and in the capital, in Kiev, separate houses, and even whole neighborhoods are left without heat.
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Nov 21 11:37

‘Obvious threat’: Russian officials warn Poland not to proceed with permanent US military base

Moscow will have to respond if Warsaw pushes through a plan to build a permanent US base on its soil, top Russian officials have warned, as the Polish defense chief said construction of the so-called Fort Trump was a done deal.

Poland’s Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak confirmed that a permanent US military installation will be “undoubtedly” created on the country’s territory. While bolstering US military presence is not a matter for negotiation, the exact mechanism and select units to be deployed are still being discussed, Blaszczak told Polish Radio on Tuesday.

However, he did not reveal any details citing the need to protect a “strong negotiating position.”

The idea of building a permanent US military installation is wholeheartedly supported by top Polish officials, who are even ready to pay a hefty sum of $2 billion for it.

Nov 21 11:35

Russia offered Israel deal to remove Iran from Syria in return for US sanctions relief

Russian President Vladimir Putin offered Israel a deal which would see Iranian-backed forces removed from Syria in return for relief from recently re-imposed US sanctions on Iran.

The deal was revealed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a closed hearing of the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee on Monday and exposed by Axios yesterday.

It is thought that Putin made the offer during a brief meeting with Netanyahu in Paris on the sidelines of a First World War commemoration on 11 November. At the time, Netanyahu described the meeting as “good and practical,” adding: “I would even describe it as very important”. Neither party revealed details of the discussion.

Nov 21 11:17

More Evidence Supporting the “Russia Did It” Narrative Is Another Branch of Spiritual Warfare

The deeper we look into the resurgence of nationalism / retraditionalization the more evidence we find to support some of the reasoning behind the western media continually shouting “Russia did it“. Corporate media does this in the face of overwhelming evidence that China has been, and will continue to be, the major threat to the U.S. economy. We are not calling either nation an enemy we are merely pointing out that China’s economic engine, along with the build out of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and all the parallel financial institutions pose more of a threat than Russia. Russia’s economy, while growing stronger every single day, is still years away from challenging the U.S. dominance in the market place. China on the other hand, many would argue, has grown her economy to overtake the status of being the largest economy in the world.

Nov 21 11:08

A conspiracy theory is born: US comedian calls Ocasio-Cortez ‘a Russian tool’

‘Russiagate’ seems to have claimed another victim. Comedian Jen Kirkman went into a full meltdown, starting by branding Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez a Russian tool and ending with blaming Putin for messing up her life.

Representative-elect Ocasio-Cortez is a rising star of progressive politics, whose way to national prominence began after she defeated veteran congressman Joe Crowley in a Democratic primary. She runs on a progressive platform and wants similarly-minded people to get elected the same way she did – by challenging centrist Democrats and thus shifting the entire party to the left.

According to Kirkman, this is all a secret ploy of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who wants to divide the Democratic Party and "take over America." On Sunday, she shared her suspicions about the politician with her 260,000 Twitter followers in a long thread that has since gone viral.

Nov 20 18:35

‘Obvious threat’: Russian officials warn Poland not to proceed with permanent US military base

Moscow will have to respond if Warsaw pushes through a plan to build a permanent US base on its soil, top Russian officials have warned, as the Polish defense chief said construction of the so-called Fort Trump was a done deal.

Nov 20 11:48

Russia won’t be dragged into new arms race, but will respond to US withdrawal from INF – Putin

Moscow will not leave Washington’s decision to unilaterally withdraw from the landmark nuclear arms treaty unanswered, Russian President Vladimir Putin said, adding that the country doesn’t need to join another arms race.

Russia is still ready to continue dialog with the US on the bilateral treaty banning medium-range missiles, which has become one of the cornerstones of nuclear disarmament, the Russian leader said at a government meeting in Sochi. Still, the US should “treat this issue with full responsibility,” the president said, adding that Washington’s decision to withdraw from the agreement “cannot and will not be left unanswered.”

Nov 20 11:46

Full stream ahead! Russia & Turkey officially complete construction of joint gas pipeline

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday participated in an official ceremony marking the completion of the offshore section of the Turkish Stream natural gas pipeline.
The offshore section of the pipeline, which is 930km (578 miles) and runs along the bottom of the Black Sea, is designed to deliver Russian gas to the Turkish market. Russia’s Gazprom began construction of the section in May 2017.

Nov 20 11:34

Kremlin critic, facing new charge, sounds alarm on Interpol

Russian prosecutors announced new criminal charges against U.S.-born Kremlin foe Bill Browder on Monday, days before a Russian police officer could become president of Interpol in a move that some Moscow critics fear might politicize the law enforcement agency.

Browder and other opponents of Russian President Vladimir Putin have complained that Russia has tried to use Interpol against them. If a Russian is elected as its new president, it could encourage Moscow to intensify attempts to hunt down its critics abroad.

The new charges leveled against Browder accuse him of forming a criminal group to embezzle funds in Russia. They also alleged that he could be behind the death of his employee, Sergei Magnitsky, in a Russian prison.

Nov 20 09:57

US promises to ‘disrupt’ oil shipments to Syria, sanctions Russian & Iranian companies

The US has introduced sanctions against what it called a network of petroleum shipments to Syria, including Russian and Iranian companies and individuals. Washington says it wants to disrupt shipments to Syrian-owned ports.
Six individuals have been sanctioned over oil shipments to Syria, the US Treasury Department has said. Three institutions have also been sanctioned.

In addition to the fresh measures, the US Coast Guard has issued an advisory warning of “significant sanctions risks” on petroleum shipments to Syria. The US has promised that it will “disrupt” any attempted shipments to government-owned ports in Syria.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"How DARE you do business with each other! How Dare you, to dare, to DARE!!!!" -- Official White Horse Souse

Nov 20 09:00

THE ONLY REGIME CHANGE THAT IS NEEDED IS IN WASHINGTON

But my vote for the most magnificent nut in an Administration that is overflowing with such talent would be the esteemed United States Special Representative for Syria Engagement James Jeffrey. The accolade is in part due to the fact that Jeffrey started out relatively sane as a career diplomat with the State Department, holding ambassadorships in Iraq, Turkey, and Albania. He had to work hard to become as demented as he now is but was helped along the way by signing on as a visiting fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP), which is a spin-off of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It appears to me, that my brother and sister Americans are back to a status quo ante, a status of feudal vassals, as we were before the American revolution.

And why do I say this?

Although this can be expressed as a grasp of the in-your-face obvious,the cold, hard reality that the government is only responsive to the already monied, to and certain foreign governments, Israel being among the worst offenders, in terms of having very effectively hijacked American foreign policy to their own ends.

What is great for Israel, is not at all necessarily good for We the People.

Yes, there are moments when a common good for both countries align; but in the world of the 21st century, those moments are consistently fewer and farther between, particularly when comes to the Zionist vision of "Eretz Israel", which means carving off hunks of adjacent countries to perfect and achieve that vision.

The maps tell the story:

Current map of Israel

Map: Eretz Israel

Notice the hunks of Iraq, Syria, Saudia Arabia, Jordan,Lebanon, Egypt and Iraq which will have to be conquered by Israel in order for this "vision" of Eretz Israel to be achieved?!?

It is no accident that Israel cheered for the US invasion and occupation of Iraq; it is no accident that they have cheered the illegal and unwanted US military actions against Syria, including funding and arming the jihadists against the government; it is no accident that they have started the "political rapprochement" process with Saudi Arabia, which they are hoping to use as a proxy force against Iran, working with the US military, as they have been doing in Yemen; and it is no accident that Israel fully expects the US to go to war against Iran for it.

But as always with Israel, these "wins" are only to be purchased primarily at the cost of American blood, and American money.

I look at the media buys the military has been doing lately, with a lot of saturation ads, to encourage our young men and women to join; but the US military is in one horrifically awful dilemma right now.

They don't have the troop strength; the weaponry; the manufacturing (outsourced in the 80s, to make way for the alleged "service economy")or the money to insure a successful outcome to a conventional war against Russia and/or China.

With the mid-terms over, before there is a war against Russia, China, and/or Iran, I would not bet against the re-institution of the draft, coupled with continuing demonization of Russia, China, and Iran.

Please remember the following reality, as stated on Google:

"Virtually all male U.S. citizens, regardless of where they live, and male immigrants, whether documented or undocumented, residing in the United States, who are 18 through 25, are required to register with Selective Service. The law says men must register with Selective Service within 30 days of their 18th birthday."

Nov 20 08:23

RUSSIAN MILITARY INTRODUCES OBLIGATORY COURSES TO PROTECT STATE SECRETS

The Russian Defense Ministry is set to educate officers and soldiers on how to behave online in order to protect state-level secrets. The military also intends to tighten legislation punishing leakers of sensitive data.
The military will launch obligatory courses on the protection of state secrets starting next year, Izvestia newspaper reported, citing the ministry’s press service. The servicemen are set to get insights into what they are allowed to post on the internet, how to use social media safely, what should – and should not – be told to strangers, and other guidance.

The courses will be obligatory for all the servicemen, despite the majority of soldiers not even having clearance for state secrets. Personnel lacking clearance will actually get longer lectures on the matter, since others have already undertaken obligatory secrecy training.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Too danged bad that the US didn't have something in place like that before Hillary Clinton was appointed Secretary of State!! :-)

Nov 19 15:40

Kremlin critic, facing new charge, sounds alarm on Interpol

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian prosecutors announced new criminal charges against U.S.-born Kremlin foe Bill Browder on Monday, days before a Russian police officer could become president of Interpol in a move that some Moscow critics fear might politicize the law enforcement agency.

Browder and other opponents of Russian President Vladimir Putin have complained that Russia has tried to use Interpol against them. If a Russian is elected as its new president, it could encourage Moscow to intensify attempts to hunt down its critics abroad.

The new charges leveled against Browder accuse him of forming a criminal group to embezzle funds in Russia. They also alleged that he could be behind the death of his employee, Sergei Magnitsky, in a Russian prison.

Nov 19 15:10

Blowback: An Inside Look at How US-Funded Fascists in Ukraine Mentor US White Supremacists

Not only are white supremacists from across the West flocking to Ukraine to learn from the combat experience of their fascist brothers-in-arms, they are doing so openly, under the nose of a shrugging law enforcement — chronicling their experiences on social media before they bring their lessons back home.

by Max Blumenthal

November 19th, 2018

By Max Blumenthal
Last month, an unsealed FBI indictment of four American white supremacists from the Rise Above Movement (RAM) declared that the defendants had trained with Ukraine’s Azov Battalion, a neo-Nazi militia officially incorporated into the country’s national guard. The training took place after the white supremacist gang participated in violent riots in Huntington Beach and Berkeley, California and Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017.

>>>

Nov 19 13:59

Afghanistan Takes Center Stage in the New Great Game. All-Asian solution. No Western invaders welcome

...What matters most for China is Afghanistan becoming part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). That’s exactly what Chinese envoy Yao Jing told the opening session of the 4th Trilateral Dialogue in Islamabad earlier this week between China, Pakistan and Afghanistan. “Kabul can act as a bridge to help expand connectivity between East, South and Central Asian regions,” Jing said. Pakistani Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed said: “The Greater South Asia has emerged as a geo-economic concept, driven by economy and energy, roads and railways and ports and pipelines, and Pakistan is the hub of this connectivity due to CPEC.” For Beijing, CPEC can only deliver its enormous potential if Pakistan and India relations are normalized. And that road goes right through Afghanistan. China has been aiming for an opening for years. Chinese intel operatives have met the Taliban everywhere from Xinjiang to Karachi and from Peshawar to Doha. The China card is immensely alluring.

Nov 19 12:00

Russia eyeing settlements with Iran in national currencies

Russia says it may launch settlements with Iran in national currencies in order to continue bilateral cooperation despite the US sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

The announcement was made by Russia’s Energy Minister Alexander Novak who said Moscow was moving ahead with the plan because it did not recognize the US sanctions against Iran.

"We do not recognize [the US sanctions against Iran], which were introduced unilaterally without the approval of the United Nations Security Council. We will continue seeking mechanisms for cooperation, and one of them is the settlements for supplied goods in national currencies," Novak was quoted as saying by Russia’s TASS news agency.

Nov 19 11:31

US State Dept Paid $25 Mil Bribe to Patriarch of Constantinople to Foment Religious Chaos in Ukraine

Bartholomew has a shady past - he is also implicated in embezzling $10 million from a project to rebuild an Orthodox church near ground zero in Manhattan, destroyed on 9/11... Bartholomew is close to the Clintons... Was $25 million in American tax dollars allocated for a payoff to stir up religious turmoil and violence in Ukraine? Did Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (unsuccessfully) attempt to divert most of it into his own pocket? Last month the worldwide Orthodox Christian communion was plunged into crisis by the decision of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I in Constantinople to recognize as legitimate schismatic pseudo-bishops anathematized by the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church, which is an autonomous part of the Russian Orthodox Church. In so doing not only has Patriarch Bartholomew besmirched the global witness of Orthodoxy’s two-millennia old Apostolic faith, he has set the stage for religious strife in Ukraine and fratricidal violence – which has already begun...

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