President Vladimir Putin accused the U.S. of seeking to blackmail France into scrapping a contract to sell Mistral warships to Russia by offering to cut a record $8.97 billion fine against BNP Paribas SA. (BNP)
“We know about the pressure which our U.S. partners are applying on France not to supply the Mistrals to Russia,” Putin told Russian diplomats in Moscow today. “And we even know they hinted that if the French don’t deliver the Mistrals, they would quietly get rid of the sanctions against the bank, or at least minimize them,” he said without naming BNP Paribas.
“What is that if not blackmail?” Putin said. Continue reading
Britain took another step towards the EU exit door as David Cameron warned that Jean-Claude Juncker’s appointment to the top job in Brussels would make it harder to persuade the public to remain in the 28-nation bloc.
Mr Cameron’s stark warning came after he suffered a humiliating defeat in his lonely battle to stop the veteran federalist becoming president of the European Commission. At a Brussels summit, EU leaders voted 26-2 to nominate Mr Juncker after Mr Cameron demanded an unprecedented formal vote on a post traditionally settled by consensus. Hungary’s Viktor Orban was the only leader to back the Prime Minister.
Asked if the crushing setback had taken the UK closer to an EU exit, Mr Cameron told a press conference: “The job has got harder of keeping Britain in a reformed Europe. The stakes are higher. Do I think it is an impossible job? No.” Continue reading
BRUSSELS – Germany has defended France’s plan to deliver a warship to Russia in October despite US criticism of the move.
Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Wednesday (4 June) in Brussels that interruption of delivery might only come if the EU adopts “stage three” sanctions – economic sanctions – against Russia.
But she said the EU is not launching stage three because Russia did not stop Ukraine’s 25 May presidential elections from going ahead. Continue reading
The household cleaning agent chlorine, in heavy concentration is purchased by Iran and and fitted with detonators, to provide President Bashar Assad with a vehicle for cheating on his undertaking to surrender Syria’s chemical arsenal under the year-old US-Russian chemical disarmament accord. And Assad is indeed getting away with using chlorine bombs, with crippling effect, especially on children, every few days.
Nonetheless, Sigrid Kaag of the UN Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons said Saturday, April 19, that Syria had destroyed approximately 80 percent of its arsenal as agreed under the Kerry-Lavrov accord. At this rate, she said, Syria will have got rid of 100 percent of its chemical arsenal by the April 27 deadline.
The French President Francois Hollande admitted April 20, however, that the Syrian leader had continued to use chemical weapons on the front line, but he denied that definite proof had not been established. Continue reading
In February, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that she’s going to talk to the President of France, Francois Hollande, about building a separate communications network for Europe so as to stop data from passing through the U.S. The U.S. has criticized such proposals and has said that they may breach international trade laws. Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said that obstructions to cross-border data flows are a serious and growing concern. Continue reading
BERLIN (Reuters) – German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Saturday she would talk to French President Francois Hollande about building up a European communication network to avoid emails and other data passing through the United States.
Merkel said in her weekly podcast that she disapproved of companies such as Google and Facebook basing their operations in countries with low levels of data protection while being active in countries such as Germany with high data protection. Continue reading
And now we see the Èlysée Palace has buckled under pressure and capitulated to the (upcoming) Fourth Reich.
PARIS/BERLIN (Own report) – Berlin is loudly applauding French President François Hollande’s adaptation of Germany’s model of austerity. His announcement of a cutback in public expenditures to clearly favor business, could “only be seen as good news,” declared Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier. German media point to the fact that Hollande has announced measures that – in certain aspects – are modeled on Germany’s “Agenda 2010,” which had been developed by the Federal Chancellery under the auspices of Frank-Walter Steinmeier, at the time, Federal Chancellery Chief of Staff under Gerhard Schröder. It had enabled Berlin to consolidate its economic predominance over Europe. Whether Paris will be able to imitate the German austerity policy is unsure. Hollande’s predecessor, Nicolas Sarkozy had tried, but he lost the presidential elections in the spring of 2012. Notwithstanding, in Berlin further steps to cut back on social welfare achievements are again in discussion. Yesterday, German President Joachim Gauck complained that the term “neo-liberal” has a negative connotation, which must be changed. Continue reading
Riyadh reported to give Jerusalem okay to use Saudi airspace and to cooperate on other tactical support, according to Sunday Times
Israel is working on coordinating plans for a possible military strike with Saudi Arabia, with Riyadh prepared to provide tactical support to Jerusalem, a British newspaper reported early Sunday. Continue reading
As mentioned in a previous post, the real scandal is that the foreign governments who are screaming the loudest, have been doing it as well.
AFP – French secret services intercept all communications in France, stocking telephone and computer data for years, daily newspaper Le Monde reported Thursday amid an international uproar over spying by the United States.
Government officials have not responded to AFP requests for comment on the Le Monde report, which said data from communications was being stored on a supercomputer at the headquarters of the DGSE intelligence service.
The DGSE “systematically collects electromagnetic signals emitted by computers in France, as well as the data feed between France and abroad: the entirety of our communications are being spied upon,” said the report. Continue reading
As the article points out, look for a European army on the horizon. Spending cuts, the economic crisis and a need for security are the drivers behind the politics that will make the United States of Europe and its European army happen. As much as its European neighbors might not like Germany much at the moment, they look towards its leadership as an economic powerhouse that runs Europe, as well as its umbrella protectorate. In the next chapter of world history, all roads are leading to Berlin. Some might agree, some might not, and some might even scoff at the idea. However, in the end, today’s jokes are tomorrow’s reality. Global Geopolitics has been following this for some time now and its trend is well documented here for you, the reader, to see and come to your own conclusions.
Germany and the Netherlands form a joint task force.
A brigade of Dutch paratroopers will be integrated into a new German division of rapid reaction forces, German newspaper Rheinische Post reported on May 22. The 11th Airmobile Brigade—a mobile force of 4,500 troops that is equipped with light vehicles, mortars and anti-aircraft systems—will join 8,600 German soldiers to form the new division under German command.
With paratroopers and special forces, as well as combat and transport helicopters, the group is designed to respond quickly to new threats and help evacuate endangered German and Dutch citizens. Until now, only Britain and America had a similar type of military structure. Continue reading
A beleagured President François Hollande went on the offensive today calling for an “economic government” for the Eurozone and “political union” in Europe within two years.
In a two hour press conference at the Elysee Palace, Mr Hollande announced a string of new initiatives including a four point plan for rapid progress towards a more federal Europe. Continue reading
François Hollande launched a three-pronged attack on Britain saying that Europe would survive without the UK, while claiming David Cameron risked splintering the EU and that his austerity policies were failing.
In a marathon press conference just shy of three hours, the embattled Socialist President promised to “go on the offensive” in year two of his five-year mandate with France sinking into recession and enduring record unemployment levels. Continue reading
French president François Hollande may have finally found a way to tax the really rich: by making their companies pay.
In a televised interview on Thursday night, he said he wants companies that pay their employees more than €1m (£840,000) to pay 75% tax on those salaries. Continue reading
Nicolas Sarkozy and François Hollande use the French armies to pander to private or foreign interests. They sent men to their death to plunder Ivory Coast cocoa, Libya’s gold reserves, Syria’s gas, and Mali’s uranium.
The trust has been broken between the military chiefs and the soldiers who are in the army to defend the homeland.
At the traditional New Year wishes ceremony, for fear that the military might shoot the President, the Elysée security service deactivated their weapons (Olivet military base, 9 January 2013). Continue reading
This is only the tip of the iceberg. Expect a shift to the hard right as Europe’s economic crisis continues and as the EU forces itself to consolidate into an even tighter political-economic union to save the Euro and/or United States of Europe.
Although it may be a different world, this phenomenon also applies in politics. Ten years ago, Europe was almost entirely dominated by social-democratic governments: with Tony, Gerhard and Göran [Blair in the UK, Schröder in Germany and Persson in Sweden] leading the way. Then something happened: a new player entered the market.
Last week, the Norwegian conservative party, Høyre, launched a new web domain [arbeidspartiet.no] “working party”, which is confusingly similar to the name of the Norwegian Labour Party [Arbeiderpartiet]. Over the last few months, Høyre’s leader Erna Solberg has taken to banging on about “human beings before billions”, while the party’s rising star Torbjørn Røe Isaksen has declared that Høyre no longer wants to deregulate the labour market and that it has nothing against trade unions.
All of this is designed to combat a perception of Høyre as a heartless club for rich people. The strategy is obviously outright copied from Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt. So you want to copy the Swedes? say the Norwegian social democrats, who are quick to point out that in the wake of six years under the Reinfeldt’s conservative government, unemployment in Sweden now stands at 8%.
In spite of this performance, Fredrik Reinfeldt and his centre-right Alliance for Sweden has proved to be a remarkably successful export. From David Cameron’s Great Britain to Angela Merkel’s Germany, Europe’s destiny is now in the hands of a soft modernised right. David Cameron speaks of “progressive conservatism”: a term that is every bit as contradictory as “peacekeeping missile” or “environmentally friendly dry cleaning”, but he is the one who is prime minister. And you would be forgiven for thinking that he is Fredrik Reinfeldt’s public-school educated twin brother.
At the same time, Europe’s most powerful woman, Angela Merkel, has staked her claim on a platform of pragmatism and watery centrism. Needless to say, the German social democrats are none too pleased. If Angela Merkel agrees to a compromise with socialist François Hollande, how can they vote against such a proposal? And let’s not forget that that the growth pact was their idea.
Full article: Europe’s new soft right is winning (presseurop)