Pence: “All-Out Cold War” Coming If China Doesn’t Change Course; “We Won’t Back Down”

 

The Washington Post’s Josh Rogin has revealed stunning comments issued by Vice President Mike Pence during a conversation between the two aboard Air Force Two as the VP traveled for an official trip to Asia this week, where he landed in Singapore for regional summits highlighting Indo-Pacific security, trade and investment.

Pence reportedly said the White House is prepared to undertake take dramatic policy changes regarding China if Beijing does not capitulate to its demands as the trade war continues. In addition to the issue of tariffs, pressing security issues include the US demanding Chinese cessation of what’s reported to be widespread intellectual property theft and refusal to recognized America freedom of navigation through and above the South China Sea.  Continue reading

US military advantage has eroded, study says

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Photo: MANDEL NGAN;Mandel Ngan / AFP / Getty Images

 

WASHINGTON – The United States has lost its military edge to a dangerous degree and could potentially lose a war against China or Russia, according to a report released Wednesday by a bipartisan commission that Congress created to evaluate the Trump administration’s defense strategy.

The National Defense Strategy Commission, comprised of former top Republican and Democratic officials selected by Congress, evaluated the Trump administration’s 2018 National Defense Strategy, which ordered a vast reshaping of the U.S. military to compete with Beijing and Moscow in an era of renewed great-power competition. Continue reading

The Biggest Threat To Dollar Dominance

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Russian oil exporters are pressuring Western commodity traders to pay for Russian crude in euros and not dollars as Washington prepares more sanctions for the 2014 annexation of Crimea by Moscow, Reuters reported last week, citing as many as seven industry sources.

While it may have come as a surprise to the traders, who, Reuters said, were not too happy about it, the Russian companies’ move was to be expected as the Trump administration pursues a foreign policy where sanctions feature prominently. This approach, however, could undermine the dominance of the U.S. dollar as the global oil trade currency. Continue reading

Russia’s Next Weapon… A Church?

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Meet Vladimir Putin’s newest weapon: a church.

 

The Russian military plans to build a military church to bolster the spiritual values of its armed forces.

The Russian military plans to build a military church to bolster the spiritual values of its armed forces. Construction will soon begin of the Main Church of the Armed Forces, to be erected in Patriot Park outside Moscow, according to Colonel General Andrei Kartapolov, deputy defense minister and chief of the armed forces’ Main Military-Political Directorate, a new organization responsible for political education of the troops. Continue reading

‘We are preparing for war’ Russia issues SHOCK warning over US withdrawal from INF Treaty

Andrei Belousov

Andrei Belousov said Russia is ‘preparing for war’ in response to the US (Image: GETTY)

 

A LEADING Russian official has warned that Russia is preparing for war in the wake of the US’s unilateral withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), in a sign of growing tensions between the two foes.

Andrei Belousov, deputy head of the Department of Nonproliferation and Arms Control at the Russian Foreign Minister, raised concerns over potential future conflict between the US and Russia, stating that Moscow will defend its territorial integrity and principles in response to US aggression.

Mr Belousov made his remarks after the First Committee of the UN General Assembly voted against a draft resolution to the INF proposed by Russia in support of the treaty. Continue reading

Mysterious Russian missile identified as anti-satellite weapon will be ready for warfare by 2022

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(Photo: CNBC)

 

  • A mysterious missile photographed last month on a Russian jet is believed to be a mock-up of an anti-satellite weapon, three sources with direct knowledge of a U.S. intelligence report say.
  • The Russian anti-satellite weapon, which is attached to a space launch vehicle, is expected to target communication and imagery satellites in low Earth orbit, according to one source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
  • The weapon is expected to join Moscow’s arsenal by 2022.

WASHINGTON — A never-before-seen missile photographed last month on a Russian MiG-31 interceptor is believed to be a mock-up of an anti-satellite weapon that will be ready for warfare by 2022, three sources with direct knowledge of a U.S. intelligence report say. Continue reading

Europe’s Gas Game Just Took A Wild Twist

Natural Gas

 

Despite the almost unprecedented divisive nature of Donald J. Trump’s presidency, he is chalking up some impressive foreign policy victories, including finally bringing Beijing to task over its decades long unfair trade practices, stealing of intellectual property rights, and rampant mercantilism that has given its state-run companies unfair trade advantages and as a result seen Western funds transform China to an emerging world power alongside the U.S.

Now, it looks as if Trump’s recent tirade against America’s European allies over its geopolitically troubling reliance on Russian gas supply may also be bearing fruit. On Tuesday, The Wall Street Journal reported that earlier this month German Chancellor Angela Merkel offered government support to efforts to open up Germany to U.S. gas, in what the report called “a key concession to President Trump as he tries to loosen Russia’s grip on Europe’s largest energy market.” Continue reading

China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran Set For Electronic Pulse Attacks on U.S.

For more information on the North Korean EMP weapons hovering over the United States, see the following previous articles:

 

Solar flare

Solar flare / Getty Images

 

Declassified report warns of dangers from electromagnetic pulse

China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran are preparing nuclear electronic pulse attacks from space in a future conflict to cripple the U.S. military and plunge the United States into darkness, according to a declassified study.

“The United States critical national infrastructure faces a present and continuing existential threat from combined-arms warfare, including cyber and manmade electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack, and natural EMP from a solar superstorm,” says a recently published report from the congressional Commission to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Attack.” Continue reading

Putin Announces New Hypersonic Weapon Will Be Deployed In “Months”

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Glancing at the current position in the 53.5 Year War Cycle, it seems the “Mid-90s Peace Dividend” has transitioned into the chaotic world of today: Cold War 2.0, but this time — conflict is more likely.

 

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that Moscow would deploy new Avangard hypersonic glider warheads in the “coming months,” adding that Russia’s hypersonic program is the most advanced in the world, according to a new report from the Financial Times.

“We are improving our attack systems in response to the construction of a missile defense system by the United States. Some of them are already in service, and some will be supplied in the near future,” said Putin, who was speaking at the Valdai Discussion Club in the Black Sea resort of Sochi Thursday, adding that Moscow’s hypersonic weapons program was well ahead of China and the US.

“The Avangard system [will be deployed] in the next few months.” 

“It is a fact of life that we are ahead of all our partners and competitors in this sphere of high precision, hypersonic weapons,” he said.

“No one else has that . . . In that sense, we feel very comfortable, very safe.”  Continue reading

Trump To Pull U.S. Out Of 1987 Nuclear Weapons Treaty With Russia

 

As Russia continues to outmaneuver the US by developing new ballistic missiles like the 9M729 ground-launched cruise missile, as well as hypersonic weapons capable of carrying a nuclear payload, President Trump said Saturday that he plans to abandon a 1987 arms-control treaty that has (on paper, at least) prohibited the US and Russia from deploying intermediate-range nuclear missiles as Russia has continued to “repeatedly violate” its terms according to the president, the Associated Press reports.

“We’re not going to let them violate a nuclear agreement,” Trump said Saturday after a campaign rally in Elko, Nevada. “We’re going to terminate the agreement.” Continue reading

Russia And China Prepare To Ditch Dollar In Bilateral Trade

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In a time when many nations have gone public with their intention to ditch the dollar in part or in whole, in bilateral trade with non-US counterparts, either to prevent the US from having “veto power” of commerce courtesy of SWIFT or simply in response to Trump’s “America First” doctrine, attention has long focused on Russia and China – the two natural adversaries to the US – to see if and when they would accelerate plans for de-dollarization. Continue reading

Russian Share In U.S. Debt Is Getting Close To Zero

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Grigory Dukor. IMAGE: Reuters

 

Russian investments in US securities as of August 2018 have fallen to just $14 billion from $180 billion back in 2011. From one of the top holders of the US debt, Moscow became the 54th largest holder. Continue reading

Mattis: China’s Island Militarization Continues

James Mattis

James Mattis (Getty Images)

 

Beijing’s South China Sea encroachment on agenda for meetings in Southeast Asia

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis this week voiced new U.S. opposition to China’s continued militarization of islands in the South China Sea.

“We remain highly concerned with continued militarization of features in the South China Sea,” Mattis told reporters on Monday as he traveled to Vietnam.

Mattis also said China is using predatory economics to seek control over other nations. Continue reading

An end to the dollar’s global hegemony? The Kremlin sees an opportunity.

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An exchange-office screen on a Moscow street shows the currency exchange rate of the Russian ruble and US dollar in April. The Kremlin has begun making moves to insulate the Russian economy from escalating US sanctions. (Pavel Golovkin/AP)

 

The dollar has long been the world’s reserve currency. But some countries, angered by sanctions, are challenging that status, potentially undermining one of the US’s most influential tools for shaping global policy.

For average Russians, a small personal hoard of US dollars has always represented a place of safety amid the wild ups-and-downs that continue to beset the country’s national currency, the ruble.

So it triggered a touch of panic among them when the Russian government confirmed long-standing rumors that it is working on a plan to insulate the economy from escalating US sanctions through “de-dollarization.” Continue reading

Medvedev: Other Nations Won’t Contain Russia

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(Photo Credit: Government of the Russian Federation)

 

But Moscow faces many challenges of an immediate nature.

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev defiantly warned the West in a magazine article published on Tuesday, and said other countries will not be able to contain Russia on the world stage as he vowed “Russia will fight.” Continue reading