Russian Official Cancels U.S. Visit, Saying ‘Second American Civil War’ Is Underway

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Activists and protesters gesture at a man wearing a confederate flag before a Ku Klux Klan rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, July 8, 2017. Such clashes in the same city would turn deadly one month later when a white supremacist killed a protester with his vehicles, sparking nationwide tensions only further stoked by President Donald Trump’s polarizing response. (ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP/Getty Images )

 

Dmitry Rogozin, the head of Russia’s Roscosmos State Space Corporation, who served as deputy prime minister until May 2017, said Thursday that rising tensions between Republicans and Democrats were leading to a breakdown of U.S. society. This included the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), one of many federal agencies affected by a government shutdown due to an inability for the rival U.S. parties to agree on funding for a border wall proposed by President Donald Trump.

“I think that America is actually engulfed by its second civil war now,” Rogozin told the Rossiya-24 TV channel, as translated by the state-run Tass Russian News Agency. Continue reading

Medvedev turns against the dollar – Rosbalt

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Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev explained the determination of the Russian authorities to minimize the use of the US dollar in foreign trade due to the consequences of the aggressive and “stupid” economic policy of the United States. He said this today, speaking at the Gaidar Forum in Moscow.

The prime minister recalled that the Russian authorities are striving to expand “the use of the ruble and other currencies in foreign trade agreements”, in addition, in recent months have “seriously reduced” the investments in US Treasury bonds (Treasury bonds U.S). Continue reading

Russia De-Dollarizes Deeper: Shifts $100 Billion To Yuan, Yen, And Euro

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Russia is continuing to ramp up its efforts to move away from the American dollar.  The country just shifted $100 billion of its reserves to the yuan, the yen, and the euro in their ongoing effort to ditch the dollar.

The Central Bank of Russia has moved further away from its reliance on the United States dollar and has axed its share in the country’s foreign reserves to a historic low, transferring about $100 billion into euro, Japanese yen, and Chinese yuan according to a report by RTThe share of the U.S. dollar in Russia’s international reserves portfolio has dramatically decreased in just three months between March and June 2018.  The holding decreased from 43.7 percent to a new low of 21.9 percent, according to the Central Bank’s latest quarterly report, which is issued with a six-month lag. Continue reading

The Threat of Communism: Then and Now

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Soviet-era Dissident Vladimir Bukovsky speaks at an opposition meeting in Moscow, 17 December 2007. Bukovsky is a potential united oppostion candidate for president in Russia’s March 2008 presidential elections. AFP PHOTO / ALEXEY SAZONOV (Photo credit should read Alexey SAZONOV/AFP/Getty Images)

 

One of the most famous enemies of Soviet communism is Vladimir Bukovsky. He was tortured by Soviet authorities. He spent many years in Soviet prisons. He was even declared “insane” and sent to a psychiatric prison. When Bukovsky was exiled to the West, people paid lip service to his courage; but few heeded his warnings about Gorbachev’s Perestroika.

Bukovsky reminded everyone that all Soviet leaders were liars. Gorbachev, he said, was no exception—and was certainly no democrat. Like Lenin, Stalin, Khrushchev, and Brezhnev, Gorbachev was a liar and a hangman. But hardly anyone listened. Everyone wanted to believe the Cold War was over.

But how could we have won the Cold War? This was the inconvenient question Bukovsky asked. Random House senior editor Jason Epstein rejected Bukovsky’s question altogether. And so, Bukovsky’s book on the equivocal “fall of communism” was not published in English—until now.

Continue reading

Russia to Deploy Precision Strike Missiles in Western Atlantic

Kalibr missile firing

Kalibr missile firing

 

Kalibr cruise missiles will target Washington, East Coast cities

Russia is deploying long-range, precision cruise missiles to the western Atlantic that American defense officials say will allow Moscow to target Washington and other East Coast cities with conventional or nuclear attacks.

Moscow is adding Kalibr land attack cruise missiles to both warships and missile submarines that Moscow plans to use in Atlantic patrols near the United States, sorties that were once routine during the Cold War. Continue reading

Iran-backed militias in Syria push closer to Israel border

IDF forces at Israel’s border fence with Syria.

 

Iran-backed militias fighting alongside the Syrian army have moved within three miles of the Israeli border.

“The Iranian-backed militias are trying to consolidate their sphere of influence all the way from southwest of Damascus to the Israeli border,” said Suhaib al Ruhail, an official from the Liwa al Furqan rebel group that operates in the area, according to Reuters. Continue reading

Putin issues ominous warning on rising nuclear war threat

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Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during his annual news conference in Moscow, Russia, Thursday, Dec. 20, 2018. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

 

MOSCOW (AP) — The world is facing a rising threat of a nuclear war because of the U.S. pullout from arms control treaties and its destabilizing military plans, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday

Speaking at his annual news conference, Putin warned that “it could lead to the destruction. of civilization as a whole and maybe even our planet.” Continue reading

Russia again successfully tests ship-based hypersonic missile — which will likely be ready for combat by 2022

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Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a ceremony to bestow state awards on military personnel who fought in Syria, at the Kremlin in Moscow on December 28, 2017. (Kirill Kudryavtsev | AFP | Getty Images)

 

  • Russia has successfully tested a ship-based hypersonic missile the United States is currently unable to defend against, according to people with direct knowledge of U.S. intelligence reports.
  • The weapon is expected to join Moscow’s arsenal by 2022.
  • The latest development gives the U.S. even more ground to make up as Russia and China bolster their arsenals with hypersonic weapons at a breakneck pace.

WASHINGTON — Russia has conducted another successful test of its ship-based hypersonic missile, a weapon the United States is currently unable to defend against, according to two people with direct knowledge of a U.S. intelligence report. Continue reading

Russia says will build up Arctic military presence

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Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev visit the Arctic last year, where Moscow is increasingly seeking to assert its influence Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev visit the Arctic last year, where Moscow is increasingly seeking to assert its influence [POOL/AFP/File]

Russia will build up its military presence in the Arctic over the next year, the defence minister said Tuesday, as Moscow seeks to assert its influence in the strategic region. Continue reading

How a World Order Ends

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And What Comes in Its Wake

A stable world order is a rare thing. When one does arise, it tends to come after a great convulsion that creates both the conditions and the desire for something new. It requires a stable distribution of power and broad acceptance of the rules that govern the conduct of international relations. It also needs skillful statecraft, since an order is made, not born. And no matter how ripe the starting conditions or strong the initial desire, maintaining it demands creative diplomacy, functioning institutions, and effective action to adjust it when circumstances change and buttress it when challenges come. Continue reading

How the New Silk Roads are merging into Greater Eurasia

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People take pictures of the first freight train from Shenzhen to Minsk, capital of Belarus, that set out of Yantian Port in Shenzhen in May 2017. Photo: Reuters / stringer

 

Russia’s embrace of the Far East and other parts of Asia is proceeding with a symbiotic embrace of China’s New Silk Roads, or Belt and Road Initiative

The concept of Greater Eurasia has been discussed at the highest levels of Russian academia and policy-making for some time. This week the policy was presented at the Council of Ministers and looks set to be enshrined, without fanfare, as the main guideline of Russian foreign policy for the foreseeable future.

President Putin is unconditionally engaged to make it a success. Already at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum in 2016, Putin referred to an emerging “Eurasian partnership” Continue reading

Russian spies ‘launched major cyber attack on Ukraine’ prior to naval incident

Preplanned, as was the invasion of Georgia and the annexation of Ukraine:

Putin Confirms the Invasion of Georgia Was Preplanned (2012)

THE RUSSIAN-GEORGIAN WAR WAS PREPLANNED IN MOSCOW (2008)

The Truth about Ukraine (2014)

 

Strait of Kerch

 

Russia “paved the way” for last November’s seizure of Ukrainian Navy ships by launching a major cyber attack and disinformation campaign aimed at Ukraine, according to a cyber security firm and the European Union. In what has become known as the Kerch Strait incident of November 25, border service coast guard vessels belonging to the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) opened fire on three Ukrainian Navy ships that were attempting to enter the Sea of Azov through the Kerch Strait. All three Ukrainian vessels, along with crews totaling 24 sailors, were captured by the Russian force and remain in detention. Ukraine condemned Russia’s action as an act of war and declared martial law in its eastern and southern provinces. But Moscow said the incident had been caused by a provocation by the Ukrainian government, in a desperate effort to increase its popularity at home. Meanwhile, the three Ukrainian ships and their crews remain in Russia. Continue reading

Russia Places Its ‘White Swan’ Strategic Bombers in Venezuela

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(Photo Credit: Vadim Savitsky/Russian Defense Ministry)

 

The tensions between Moscow and Washington continue to escalate.

Two Russian Tu-160 strategic bombers, dubbed the “white swan,” was part of a fleet of aircraft that arrived at the Simon Bolivar International Airport in Maichetia, Venezuela, today after a flight of more than 6,200 miles. Continue reading

Russian Central Bank Preparing for SWIFT ‘Nuclear Option’

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(Photo Credit: Ludvig12 via Creative Commons 4.0)

 

Smaller banks have been encouraged to establish secondary arrangements for processing bank card transactions.

Preparing for new U.S. sanctions “early next year” that will likely target Russia’s access to the SWIFT international banking system—something that was just described as a “nuclear option” against Moscow just earlier this week—the Bank of Russia has urged the country’s smaller banks to prepare for a “worst-case scenario.” Continue reading

U.S. gives Russia 60 days to comply with nuclear treaty

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U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo attends a news conference during the NATO foreign ministers’ meeting at the Alliance’s headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, December 4, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The United States delivered Russia a 60-day ultimatum on Tuesday to come clean about what Washington says is a violation of a arms control treaty that keeps missiles out of Europe, saying only Moscow could save the pact.

NATO allies led by Germany pressed U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo at a meeting in Brussels to give diplomacy a final push before Washington pulls out of the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty, fearing a new arms race in Europe.

“Russia has a last chance to show in a verifiable way that they comply with the treaty … but we also have to start to prepare for the fact that this treaty may break down,” NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg told reporters. Continue reading