US Threatens To Cut Off China From SWIFT If It Violates North Korea Sanctions

While this sounds like a step that needed to be taken, and it is, it’s too little too late. China (and Russia) have created an alternative to SWIFT. Thus, cutting China off only means it will switch to its own and abandon the U.S. Dollar system — with Russia likely to join. In effect, it will end up hurting the United States more than the intended target(s).

Over the last decade China and Russia have feverishly worked around America’s global influence. Russia and China no longer need GPS, as they have their own indigenous satellite navigation systems — Europe, too. You’ll only do their militaries a favor if you cut that off. Control over the internet has been ceded by America, so there’s also no method or means of punishment there. The IMF has been undermined by the AIIB, so it’s also hard to do anything there as well.

America’s choices are limited and not as effective as they used to be. The joke may be on the U.S. should push come to shove. The alternatives set up only mean America will likely isolate itself should it choose punitive measures.

 

In an unexpectedly strong diplomatic escalation, one day after China agreed to vote alongside the US (and Russia) during Monday’s United National Security Council vote in passing the watered down North Korea sanctions, the US warned that if China were to violate or fail to comply with the newly imposed sanctions against Kim’s regime, it could cut off Beijing’s access to both the US financial system as well as the “international dollar system.”

Speaking at CNBC’s Delivering Alpha conference on Tuesday, Steven Mnuchin said that China had agreed to “historic” North Korean sanctions during Monday’s United Nations vote. “We worked very closely with the U.N.  I’m very pleased with the resolution that was just passed.  This is some of the strongest items.  We now have more tools in our toolbox, and we will continue to use them and put additional sanctions on North Korea until they stop this behavior.”

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Buried in backlog, Feds give top-secret clearances to murderers, rapists

Marines assigned to the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit embark the amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge in Norfolk, Va., in August. The Defense Department has some 100,000 employees on temporary clearances awaiting full security reviews. Mass Communication Spec. 1st Class Deven B. King – U.S. Navy

 

“This is very, very dangerous,” said Daniel E. Payne, head of the Defense Security Service, a federal office that oversees the granting of temporary clearances.

Payne said roughly 100,000 people hold interim clearances while working for companies with Defense Department contracts or at 13,000 cleared facilities and plants around the country and as they await a full comprehensive background investigation.

“I’ve got murderers who have access to classified information. I have rapists. I have pedophiles. I have people involved in child porn,” Payne said. “This is the risk we are taking.”

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Moscow Furious Over US Plan To Search Russia Trade Mission, Calls It “Unprecedented Aggressive Action”

 

Yesterday, the San Francisco fire department scrambled a team of firefighters to the city’s Russian consulate (scheduled to be vacated today in the latest tit-for-tat diplomatic escalation between the US and Russia) following reports of “blowing smoke” emerging from the building, only to learn that the Russians were engaged in what appears to have been some last minute confidential document “redaction.”

Maria Zakharova, the spokeswoman for the Russian foreign ministry, explained that the smoke was part of a “mothballing” according to Reuters.

“In relation to this, the windows could be closed, the light could be turned off, the water could be drained out, the heating appliances could be turned off, the garbage could be thrown away, essential services could be turned off and many other things.”

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More facts revealed about mystery sonic attacks on US embassy in Cuba

US embassy in Cuba

 

Now new information has been disclosed by the United States Department of State. It suggests that, although diplomats began reporting hearing-loss symptoms in as early as fall 2016, the incidents continued until mid-August of this year. In a report published on Saturday, the BBC said that the bizarre incidents had not ended “several months ago” as was initially believed. Instead, they continued even after the last week of May, when the US deported two Cuban diplomats from Washington, DC. The move was in response to what Washington believes was a deliberate attempt to sabotage its diplomatic mission in Havana. The American embassy in the Cuban capital reopened in 2015, 54 years after it was closed down following a series of diplomatic rifts between Cuba and the US during the height of the Cold War.

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Russia Responds: “The US Has Declared The Hot Phase Of Diplomatic War”

Leonid Slutsky

 

Just minutes after Russia was given 2 days to implement today’s decision by the State Department, shuttering Russia’s consulate in San Francisco, California and two diplomatic annexes in Washington, DC and New York City, in “the spirit of parity invoked by the Russians”, the Russian responses started coming in, and they were not happy.

Russia’s foreign minister Sergey Lavrov was first on the tape, saying he  “expressed regret about the escalation of tensions in bilateral ties”, noting “it wasn’t Russia that started the escalation.” Continue reading

Can Putin keep Hizballah from Israel’s borders?

Enemies of the Trump administration have hampered the White House to the extent where it is affecting political affairs, limits the ability to physically defend allies or even being able to take the time to address concerns. This is when it gets dangerous.

 

 

Israel’s northern borders with Syria and Lebanon were on edge this week, as Prime Minister Binyamin prepared to raise Israel’s concerns about southern Syria at a critical meeting with President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday, Aug. 23, at the Black Sea resort of Sochi.

The Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem noted that he would be accompanied by Mossad Director Yossie Cohen. He has just returned from a failed attempt in Washington to draw the Trump Administration’s attention to the deteriorating security situation on Israel’s northern borders, where Russian Muslim troops are already in position. Continue reading

Vietnam Bends the Knee to China

Chinese President Xi Jinping accompanies President Tran Dai Quang of The Socialist Republic of Viet Nam to view a guard of honour during a welcoming ceremony outside the Great Hall of the People on May 11, 2017 in Beijing, China. GETTY IMAGES

 

More proof that in the South China Sea, Beijing is king.

In recent decades, Vietnam has distinguished itself several times as a nation not afraid to stand up to its larger and far more powerful neighbor to the North. From the border conflicts of the 1970s and ’80s to the passage in 2012 of the “Law on the Sea” resolution, Hanoi has demonstrated its willingness to resist Beijing. But last month, in a sign of the shifting power balance between China and the United States, Vietnam yielded to Beijing’s intimidation. Continue reading

We’re About to See the U.S. Lose in an Unprecedented Deal with North Korea

 

North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un’s decision not to bomb the American territory of Guam was a strategically planned chess move.

It was a stalling tactic on the regime leader’s part to give the United States one last chance to strike a deal with North Korea – on North Korea’s terms.

And whatever Washington does in response will come with enormous risk.

Here’s why… Continue reading

God Keep America Safe

Liliya Shevstova (Source: Youtube.com)

 

Liliya Shevtsova, formerly head of the Carnegie Foundation Moscow Center and a fellow at Brookings ,is a prolific writer on Russian Politics. She was also the cofounder of the Davos World Economic Forum Global Council on Russia’s Future. In this article for the liberal Echo Moscow website, Shevtsova explores Russia’s hate-love relationship with the United States, which has remained a constant from Lenin to Putin. Russia has mastered the art of exploiting American resources without renouncing an ideology of eventually destroying its adversary.

“Imagine that the United States of America suddenly disappeared – flew to the Moon or something. What would we do in Russia? What would we talk about – who would we denigrate or secretly admire? What would the TV prattle about? And whom would Putin talk to, if the American president was unavailable? Russian foreign policy would disappear completely, since it is based on the conviction that the world held together is our enmity-cooperation with the US. Continue reading

Chinese paper says China should stay neutral if North Korea attacks first

In case you needed further proof that North Korea is a Chinese proxy against the west, mainly America, look no further. They’ll let North Korea do whatever it pleases in order to extract concessions out of the United States, so long as it doesn’t go overboard and force China to support it should it be the one starting a physical war. China needs to be able to save face and having North Korea provoke a war and then claim to be the victim is key.

 

FILE PHOTO: Members of honour guards hold red flags during a welcoming ceremony for Denmark’s Queen Margrethe II outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing April 24, 2014. (Jason Lee)

 

BEIJING (Reuters) – If North Korea launches an attack that threatens the United States then China should stay neutral, but if the United States attacks first and tries to overthrow North Korea’s government China will stop them, a Chinese state-run newspaper said on Friday.

President Donald Trump ratcheted up his rhetoric toward North Korea and its leader on Thursday, warning Pyongyang against attacking Guam or U.S. allies after it disclosed plans to fire missiles over Japan to land near the U.S. Pacific territory. Continue reading

Unarmed Russian Air Force jet overflies the Pentagon, Capitol, CIA

(CNN) An unarmed Russian Air Force aircraft overflew the US Capitol, the Pentagon, Central Intelligence Agency and Joint Base Andrews at low altitude on Wednesday as part of a longstanding treaty that allows the militaries of the United States and Russia to observe the other from the air, according to two people familiar with the flight.

The flight was part of the Treaty on Open Skies, which allows military aircraft from the United States and Russia and other nations to fly aerial observation flights to observe military sites of the 34 signatory nations.

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China’s Tough New Stance Against North Korea Is a Total Ruse

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi.

 

Yesterday, China vowed to fulfill its duties as part of the United Nations’ latest effort to curb North Korea’s nuclear intentions… but we’re not convinced.

The U.S.-sponsored Resolution 2371, which passed with unanimous support from all 15 UN council members on Saturday (Aug. 5), was drafted with the purpose of hitting Kim Jong Un’s regime where it will hurt the most: trade.

Specifically, the latest batch of North Korea sanctions will bar North Korean exports of several key commodities – including lead, lead ore, iron, iron ore, coal, and seafood. These restrictions, in turn, will deny the country an estimated $1 billion in exports annually – equivalent to about one-third of its total trade with the outside world per year. Continue reading

Trump Will Now Become the War President

President Trump has been defeated by the military/security complex and forced into continuing the orchestrated and dangerous tensions with Russia. Trump’s defeat has taught the Russians the lesson I have been trying to teach them for years, and that is that Russia is much more valuable to Washington as an enemy than as a friend. Continue reading

“Pushing Back” Iran

 

On both the left and the right, there is a consensus in Washington that the United States needs to “push back” against the Islamic Republic’s nefarious actions in the Levant, Iraq, and Yemen. The clerical regime largely controls the ground war in Syria: Tehran’s foreign Shiite militias, imported from Lebanon, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, and Iranian-directed native forces lead the battle against the Sunni insurrection. In Iraq, the Islamic Republic has energetically encouraged sectarian conflict, aiding politicians and militias that have taken a hardline toward political compromise with Sunnis. Iraqi members of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps have become senior officials in the government. And in Yemen, Iran has backed the Shiite Houthis in their campaign to dominate the country. What once would have seemed far-fetched—Tehran trying to develop a Lebanese Hezbollah-like movement among Yemen’s “Fiver” Zaydi Shiites, who have never been close to the “Twelver” Jafaris of Iran—is now conceivable. If such Shiite militancy becomes anchored in the south of the peninsula, Tehran will surely try to aim it northward toward the badly oppressed Shiites of Bahrain and the oil-rich Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia. Continue reading

EU “Sounds Alarm” Over New US Sanctions On Russia; Germany Threatens Retaliation

Late on Friday, Congressional negotiators reached a deal to advance a bill that would punish Russia for its interference in the 2016 election and restrict the president’s power to remove sanctions on Moscow, according to the WSJ. The measure, if signed into law, will also give Congress veto powers to block any easing of Russian sanctions by the president. And while it remained unclear if President Donald Trump would sign the bill if it reaches his desk, which is now likely, the loudest complaint about the bill to date has emerged noe from the Oval Office, but from Brussels, after the EU once again urged (and warned, and threatened) US lawmakers to coordinate their anti-Russia actions with European partners, or else. Continue reading