Friday, 30 November 2018

Under Pressure: Trump Cancels Upcoming Putin Meeting But Refuses To Blame Russia For Kerch Strait



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MOSCOW, Russian Federation –  U.S President Donald Trump announced that he was canceling a meeting with Russian leader Vladimir Putin at the G20 summit in Argentina.
US President Donald Trump
He made this decision after reading the report on the incident in the Kerch Strait. According to him, the main reason for the incident was the fact that ships and sailors did not return to Ukraine. Trump was criticized by both Neocon Republicans and Clinton Democrats alike, for failing to ‘condemn’ Russia.
“I look forward to a meaningful summit again as soon as the situation is resolved!” – Trump wrote on Twitter .
The Russians, for their part, have also made an official statement. RIA reports that the spokesman for the Russian president, Dmitry Peskov, said that the Kremlin has no official information about canceling the meeting.
At the same time, he noted that if the United States confirms the refusal, then Putin will have a couple extra hours to meet on the sidelines of the summit.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Donald Trump
The last time world leaders could briefly talk in early November in Paris on the “margins” of events in honor of the centenary of the end of the First World War.
In mid-July, the first full-format meeting between Putin and Trump was held in Helsinki. The conversation between the leaders of Russia and the United States began in a one-on-one format, then negotiations continued with the participation of members of delegations. The heads of state discussed ways of normalizing and developing bilateral relations, and pressing issues on the international agenda.
Provocation in the Kerch Strait
On the morning of November 25, the ships of the Ukrainian Navy, Berdyansk, Nikopol and Yana Kapu, violated the state border of Russia and maneuvered dangerously for several hours without reacting to the legal demands of Russian boats and ships.
Shipping in the Kerch Strait resumed
The vessels were detained, 24 Ukrainian military men were on board, including the SBU officers, who, according to the Center for Public Relations of the FSB, coordinated the provocations.
A criminal case: violation of the state border
Vladimir Putin called the situation in the Kerch Strait pre-prepared provocation, which Petro Poroshenko used as a pretext to impose a state of emergency in Ukraine on the eve of presidential elections.
At the same time, the head of state stressed that Russian border guards were fulfilling their duty to protect the state border.
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What Senators Had to Say on Ending Military Support to Saudi Arabia




The Senate on Wednesday delivered a historic rebuke of Saudi Arabia and President Trump’s handling of the fallout over journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s killing last month, as a decisive majority voted to advance a measure to end US military support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen.
The vote was prompted by lawmakers’ growing frustration with Trump for defending Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s denials of culpability in Khashoggi’s death, despite the CIA’s finding that he had almost certainly ordered the killing.
Their frustration peaked shortly before Wednesday’s vote, when senators met behind closed doors to discuss Saudi Arabia, Khashoggi and Yemen with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and War Secretary Jim Mattis — but not CIA Director Gina Haspel, who did not attend the briefing.
Democratic Senator Bob Menendez said the Senate had been “stonewalled from hearing from the CIA director”.
“I have respects for the secretaries of state and defense but I don’t need them to characterize the information of the CIA and intelligence community, I need to hear it directly,” he added. “It’s time to send Saudi Arabia a message, both on its violation of human rights and the incredible humanitarian catastrophe it’s creating in Yemen.”
Republican Senator Bob Corker, who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said it was apparent to everyone in the room that the crown prince had been responsible for Khashoggi’s death.
“We have a problem here. We understand that Saudi Arabia is an ally, of sorts, and a semi-important country. We also have a crown prince that’s out of control,” he said.
Another Republican Senator, Lindsey Graham, said he would be withholding his vote on any key issue until the CIA gave senators directly a briefing on the killing.
“I’m all for realpolitik, but that suggests that you accept the truth,” Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) said of Khashoggi’s death, adding that if Mohammed “wasn’t directly involved, he certainly knew of it.”

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BREAKING: Israel ATTACKS Syria, Results In TOTAL BLUNDER

Breaking: Syrian Air Defense Forces Shoot Down "Enemy Objects" Over Damascus
Illustrative image
At the late hours of November 29, the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) reported that the Syrian Arab Air Defense Forces (SyAADF) have shoot down several unidentified flying objects over the district of al-Kiswah south of the Syrian capital of Damascus.
“Initial reports say that all enemy objects were destroyed and didn’t reach any of their targets,” the SANA said in a short press release.
Local sources told SouthFront that the SyAAD is still launching surface-to-air missiles at flying objects over Damascus and al-Quneitra. Several loud explosions were also heard between the two governorates.
The available information indicate that the Israeli Air Force (IAF) attempt to strike positions of Iranian forces south of Damascus. However, the Syrian and Israeli media are yet to provide more details.
If confirmed, this would be the first Israeli airstrike on Syria since the downing of the Russian Il-20 intelligence plane on September 17. Following the incident, Russia supplied Syria with the S-300 air defense system and an advanced command and control system.

BREAKING: Israel ATTACKS Syria, Results In TOTAL BLUNDER

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DAMASCUS, Syria – The Syrian Air Defense Systems have thwarted off a weak Israeli attack meant to target pro-government forces.
The Syrian Air Defense Systems took down hostile targets over Al-Kiswah in southern Syria.
“Our air defenses repelled the aggression and foiled it. Despite the intensity of the aggression, it has not been able to reach its objectives,” a Syrian military source told Kevork Almassian of Syriana Analysis.
“All hostile targets were dealt with and destroyed,” the source added.
To thwart off the attack, the Syrian military relied on the air defense systems located in Al-Dimas. Effectively, this means that the famous Russian S-300 air defense systems in Masyaf were not utilized by the Syrian military. The S-300 was delivered to Syria by Russia after Israel was blamed for the downing of a Russian jet some months earlier in which 15 soldiers had died.
This also marks the first Israeli attack on Syria since the September 18th tragedy, demonstrating that the S-300 was a strong deterrent, and on the first occasion of conducting aggression on Syria since the incident, the air defense system was not even needed to thwart off the foiled attack .
It is thought that the reason Israel decided to attack on this occasion was because Hezbollah and Iranian military advisers have newly established observation points in Quneitra and Dara’a countryside near the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. This effectively broke an agreement in which Hezbollah and Iran were meant to be some tens of kilometers from the border.
Meanwhile, other reports of projectiles falling on the Israeli-occupied areas of the Golan Heights.
UPDATE: Sputnik Arabic is claiming that the Syrian air defense systems downed an Israeli jet and four cruise missiles. However, Fort Russ News is not able to verify these reports at this moment, and will do so as soon as there is clarity.
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Thursday, 29 November 2018

Excerpts from President Donald Trump’s Statement on Standing with Saudi Arabia

November 28, 2018
Excerpts from President Donald Trump’s Statement on Standing with Saudi Arabia
by: Chris Faure for The Saker Blog
“The world is a very dangerous place!”
“The country of Iran, as an example, is responsible for a bloody proxy war against Saudi Arabia in Yemen, trying to destabilize Iraq’s fragile attempt at democracy, supporting the terror group Hezbollah in Lebanon, propping up dictator Bashar Assad in Syria (who has killed millions of his own citizens), and much more. Likewise, the Iranians have killed many Americans and other innocent people throughout the Middle East. Iran states openly, and with great force, “Death to America!” and “Death to Israel!” Iran is considered “the world’s leading sponsor of terror.”
The world is indeed a very dangerous place if the so-called leader of the free world and the West, without blushing, starts off a statement about the murder of a Saudi journalist by slamming Iran, Hezbollah, Bashar al-Assad and includes that propitious marketing statement … “and much more.” And when did Bashar al-Assad kill millions of his own citizens anyway?
As we read on, we will see that the opening statement to the Statement is an eye-blind, deliberate distraction, powered by oil price paranoia, and paranoia that this Statement would not do what it is intended to do – that is to obscure the absence of any kind of moral yardstick or ethical firmament. By opening with a litany of tired old phrases on Hezbollah, Iran “and much more”, it is hoped that the ‘official reality’ will hide the ‘actual reality’. These are Games that Zionists play. They are also Games that Kindergartners play: “It was not me, it was he! Really teacher, I’m not lying.”
The story itself reads like an international spook-spy crime novel. Alternatively, if you change the names of the countries for New York ‘burbs, it reads like a new Sicilian mob novel. But even the Sicilian mob had a code of honor, something that is completely absent in this Statement.
The journalist, Jamal Khashoggi, contributed to the Washington Post and lived in Virginia. His slaying took place in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey on October 2nd, 2018, by a 15 man Saudi hit team where the Turkish State had surreptitiously bugged the Saudi embassy and the listening and recording equipment in the Saudi embassy recorded blow by blow the Saudi hit team carrying out the beating, killing and dismemberment. Perhaps the dismemberment preceded the killing. Since then, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, President of Turkey, has salaciously revealed the details of this brutal slaying, drip by drop to the world, seeking any favor and any edge concession somewhere in the international arena, with his recording of flaming and violent evidence. Eventually, this murder recording reached Mr. Donald Trump, who of course, is best friends with The House of Saud.
Sidebar: With a little research into Who is Jamal Khashoggi?, we find that he is a cousin of Adnan Khashoggi, his uncle, a Saudi super-rich businessman. Those who read Trump’s The Art of the Deal, will remember that Trump and Adnan Khashoggi visited together during the ’80s. For purposes of this article we will not dwell on this here, but leave this to you. Jake Morphonios starts this research on his video from time marker 44:00. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RrsgNZaUuvY
There is ample proof (substantially more than highly likely) that MbS (Mohammad bin Salman, Crown Prince of Saudi and better known as Clown Prince) directly orchestrated this murder. The hit squad hailed from MbS’s private office chief, Bader Al Asaker. The CIA stated that MbS was directly involved but subsequently Mr Trump denied that the CIA had stated this.  Meanwhile, back at the ranch in Ankara or Istanbul, seemingly Mr Edogan kept little piece of the CIA story back, as a bargaining chip of some sort.  “The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is in possession of a phone call recording of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in which he is heard giving an instruction to “silence Jamal Khashoggi as soon as possible,” Hürriyet columnist Abdulkadir Selvi wrote on Nov. 22.  http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/cia-holds-smoking-gun-phone-call-of-saudi-crown-prince-on-khashoggi-murder-columnist-139079
Let’s continue.
“The world is a very dangerous place!”
“On the other hand, Saudi Arabia would gladly withdraw from Yemen if the Iranians would agree to leave. They would immediately provide desperately needed humanitarian assistance. Additionally, Saudi Arabia has agreed to spend billions of dollars in leading the fight against Radical Islamic Terrorism.”
One cannot make this up: Post moral rationalization reads like satire. The world is truly a very dangerous place if Wahhabi Saudi is presented as humanitarian and the war in Yemen as an Iranian supported war. The concept that the (out)House of Saud would immediately provide desperately needed humanitarian assistance to Yemen beggars belief. It does make sense however if one considers or accepts the perspective that Mukhtar (appointed headman and tax farmer) Donald Trump swore allegiance to his Saudi Buddies in Riyadh in full vision of the world in a strange testosterone-filled ceremony involving laying communal hands on a lighted sphere and dancing.  The Saudis could have made the promise to Mr. Trump that they will surely and quickly become humanitarian in Yemen, so that he could get on with it and write his Statement that is clearly sans honor and devoid of ethics.
Descriptions: (Out)House of Saud attributed to Dr. Joseph P. Farrell – Mukhtar (appointed headman and tax farmer) attributed to Patrick Lang.
“The world is a very dangerous place!”
“After my heavily negotiated trip to Saudi Arabia last year, the Kingdom agreed to spend and invest $450 billion in the United States. This is a record amount of money. It will create hundreds of thousands of jobs, tremendous economic development, and much additional wealth for the United States. Of the $450 billion, $110 billion will be spent on the purchase of military equipment from Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, and many other great U.S. defense contractors. If we foolishly cancel these contracts, Russia and China would be the enormous beneficiaries – and very happy to acquire all of this newfound business. It would be a wonderful gift to them directly from the United States! “
So, now we get to the crux of the matter of the Statement. The world is surely a very dangerous place if it is so clear that it is money that talks and the Saudis can kill whomever the Saudis want to kill, but we all know the show must go on. In this instance, the show is the signed defense contracts and the oil price.  So, to be forgiven and exonerated of brutal murder, the new legal standard set by Mr. Trump is that one only needs to keep the oil flowing and promise to buy US weaponry and perhaps promise to be nice, in Yemen.
But if your name is Julian Assange, or Edward Snowden, or Jack who lives down the road, and you don’t have oil, and you don’t sign defense contracts and you cannot promise to change your essential nature and to be nice in Yemen, the rules change of course. But for the Saudis, we are now outside of any pretense of the Rule of Law.
In one fell swoop, it is clear that we are in a post-honor and post-ethics world, and we even see an evil note surface if a base commandment, Though Shalt Not Kill, can easily be superseded by oil and military contracts. The Middle East Eye reports that the man built from cards, Pompeo, handed Riyadh a plan to shield MbS from Khashoggi fallout
“The world is a very dangerous place!”
“The crime against Jamal Khashoggi was a terrible one and one that our country does not condone. Indeed, we have taken strong action against those already known to have participated in the murder. After great independent research, we now know many details of this horrible crime. We have already sanctioned 17 Saudis known to have been involved in the murder of Mr. Khashoggi, and the disposal of his body. “
What? How dangerous is the world now if murder is sanctioned by sanctions, not by a court of law, but by a President of the United States who has now turned over all pretense at investigation, due process, all semblance of an independent judiciary, and all pretense of the rule of law. Great Independent Research? Was this also around a lighted sphere with much dancing? For the record, Mr. Trump has now ignored all of his specialist agencies in favor of Great Independent Research, not documented and probably fact-free.
The world is getting more dangerous by the minute as this story unfolds.
“The world is a very dangerous place!”
“Representatives of Saudi Arabia say that Jamal Khashoggi was an “enemy of the state” and a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, but my decision is in no way based on that – this is an unacceptable and horrible crime. King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman vigorously deny any knowledge of the planning or execution of the murder of Mr. Khashoggi. Our intelligence agencies continue to assess all information, but it could very well be that the Crown Prince had knowledge of this tragic event – maybe he did, and maybe he didn’t!”
The World is a very dangerous place if it does not matter if the Clown prince had prior knowledge of this brutal murder being planned and executed. No way José, that is not important. Oil is important, and weapons contracts are important. But, wait a minute, why all these weapons? Was Saudi not intending to wrap the Yemenis in their loving arms and become humanitarian?  I was already expecting flowers in the rifle barrels.
“The world is a very dangerous place!”
“That being said, we may never know all of the facts surrounding the murder of Mr. Jamal Khashoggi. In any case, our relationship is with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. “
We have to stop right here. This is an inept and unacceptable effort to remove this beating, murder, and dismemberment from the sphere of affairs of the State, and State to State interaction. But wait a minute, did this murder not take place in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul? How much more ‘affairs of the State’ can one get? It is gauche attempt at separating affairs of state, and it fails to convince.
Can anyone imagine the fall-out if this was not Saudi Arabia, but Russia?  Can you imagine the fall-out?
“They have been a great ally in our very important fight against Iran. The United States intends to remain a steadfast partner of Saudi Arabia to ensure the interests of our country, Israel and all other partners in the region. It is our paramount goal to fully eliminate the threat of terrorism throughout the world! I understand there are members of Congress who, for political or other reasons, would like to go in a different direction – and they are free to do so. I will consider whatever ideas are presented to me, but only if they are consistent with the absolute security and safety of America. After the United States, Saudi Arabia is the largest oil producing nation in the world. They have worked closely with us and have been very responsive to my requests to keeping oil prices at reasonable levels – so important for the world.”
And this statement could not be complete without mentioning Israel, could it? Following is the complete exoneration and pardon for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia because they bow to the dictat of the lighted sphere and the demands of a capricious US President for low oil prices who rewrites common criminal law on the turn.  Are we now officially in LaLaLand?
“As President of the United States I intend to ensure that, in a very dangerous world, America is pursuing its national interests and vigorously contesting countries that wish to do us harm. Very simply it is called America First!”
Let us rewrite that last sentence with our brand-new knowledge from Mr.Trump’s Statement:  Very simply it is called America First and we will say what is right and what is wrong and do whatever we please about it.
Losing all decorum, Tulsi Gabbard made a quick tweet: Hey @realdonaldtrump: being Saudi Arabia’s bitch is not “America First.” — Tulsi Gabbard (@TulsiGabbard) November 21, 2018
‘A pile of lies, BS and nonsense’ says Thomas Juneau of the University of Ottawa.
So, what do we have?  Mr. Trump with this one statement sold off every principle of decency down the oil river. He usurped the task of an independent judiciary, sidelined his 17 or so spy organizations in favor of ‘independent research’ which he does not even present because it does not matter who is guilty or not. This is of course in order to keep the oil wheels of empire humming, but there is no moral guideline here if America First can be supported by any little dismemberment and murder anywhere. This makes a mockery of America First.  He sold out every honest person everywhere and may have put a final nail in the US constitution. He ignored all ethical considerations and trampled over what is right, what is lawful and the simple but clear Christian commandment: “Thou Shalt not Kill.” Every decent human value is now dependent on the oil price and military contracts. Mr. Trump continued after this Statement to congratulate the (out)House of Saud for pumping oil to lower the oil price.
Mr. Trump gave, with this one statement, the word ‘deplorable’ its proper meaning (and using her word, does not imply any support for Killary Clinton whatsoever). Even the Leaning Tower of Piza is now more morally upright.
We find ourselves in a post-constitutional, post-truth, post-ethics, post-basic-rule-of-law and post-honor world. If we do not have values, we are in the milieu of evil.  There are no good actors or heroes or Captains of freedom and democracy or decency in this story.
Mr. Trump’s world is indeed a very dangerous world, and the empire is on the brink of collapse because of internal divisions and under the leadership of a minion with no ethics. With this Statement we see that the minion is equally compromised by his relationship with Israel, as with Saudi Arabia. An empire with no values run by dictat is indeed incredibly dangerous. I trust that the rest of the world will know clearly now that values based interaction with Mr. Trump is meaningless as it is clearly demonstrated that he will justify killing anyone or dispensing with anything for dreams of a ’50’s style US spiced up with a bit of space warfare and a wall.  His quagmire has deepened, the level of respect for him has lessened once again, and he will be laughed out of the UN again and again.   His own swamp is now visible and laid bare.  The tragedy is that he is right.  From his lofty heights, it is only business.
For making that so crystal clear, we thank Mr Trump. For those that still don’t get it, this illustration serves to explain.



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Big Lies Drown Out Truth-Telling

By Stephen Lendman
Source
All politicians lie, some more than others. The Clintons, Bush/Cheney, and Obama were egregious serial liars.
Since entering office, Trump dissembling, rage, duplicity, hubris, and arrogance exceeded the worst of his predecessors. Virtually nothing he says on important issues is credible.
He never lets facts interfere with his deplorable domestic and geopolitical agenda only despots and robber barons could love.
His lying is so consistent, compulsive and extreme, he may be unable to distinguish between truth and fiction, especially for relying on rubbish fed him by hardline neocon advisors and Fox News disinformation, his favorite TV channel.
He’s an embarrassment to the office he holds, a geopolitical know-nothing, the latest in a long line of anti-populist warrior presidents – serving the nation’s military, industrial, security complex, including Wall Street and other monied interests exclusively at the expense of the vast majority of people everywhere.
His support for Saudi crown prince Mohammad bin Salman (MBS) flies in the face of his responsibility for ordering Jamal Kashoggi’s murder, his genocidal war in Yemen (partnered with US-led NATO and Israel), the kingdom’s horrendous human rights abuses, its support for ISIS and other terrorists (along with the US, NATO and Israel), and the CIA’s conclusion about MBS’ responsibility for Khashoggi’s assassination.
His hyperbolic claims about Saudi arms purchases from US companies and jobs created are grossly inflated.
According to ABC News, slumlord DLT son-in-law Jared Kushner pushed the Pentagon and State Department to go along with Trump’s fake numbers, according to three former White House officials.
One source quoted Kushner saying “(w)e need to sell them as much as possible” during a national security council meeting ahead of DLT’s Riyadh visit last May.
Touting an alleged $115 billion deal agreed on, along with hundreds of billions more over the next decade, around $15 billion alone has been discussed.
The so-called Memorandum of Intent signed at the May meeting is unrelated to what the Saudis may actually buy – a whole lot less than Trump touts.
According to ABC News, since the touted deal was signed in Riyadh, “there has been minimal activity toward purchasing the defense equipment and arms laid out in the arms agreements and signed,” adding: 
“According to the Department of Defense, of the original $110 billion, Saudi Arabia has signed Letters of Offer and Acceptance valued at around $14.5 billion for equipment, including helicopters, tanks, ships, weapons and training.” 
Much of what the Saudis agreed to buy from the US was negotiated by Obama regime officials.
“Many of the details about the quantity and types of defense weapons to be purchased are not listed and are slated to be delivered after 2022 or have a ‘to be determined’ delivery dates and quantities.”
Trump’s claim about record US arms sales to the Saudis, “creat(ing) hundreds of thousands of jobs, tremendous economic development, and much additional wealth for the United States” is pure deception, adding:
“Of the $450 billion, $110 billion will be spent on the purchase of military equipment from Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and many other great US defense contractors.”
The dollar amount of alleged deals and numbers of jobs created are figments of his imagination and habitual dissembling. His hyperbole bears no relation to reality.
A US/Saudi document seen by ABC News says what Riyadh agreed on with Trump officials “does not create any authority to perform any work, award any contract, ‘issue articles from stock,’ transfer funds, or otherwise obligate or create a binding commitment in any way either for the United States or the kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
In other words, it’s a Trump regime no-deal/deal – nothing firm or contractually binding, nothing approaching Trump’s touted $110 billion figure and $450 billion amount.
They’re fantasy numbers, not real ones. So-called “record amount of money” in US arms sales to the kingdom and “hundreds of thousands of jobs” created, perhaps a million he said, is “record” bunkum.
It’s more proof that all Trump claims are fabricated. Nothing he says is credible. He plays fast and loose with reality, pretending fiction is fact.
Trump exposed: Once a liar, always one, never to be believed on anything.

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US, Europe & NATO risk all-out war by backing unhinged Kiev regime


Finian CunninghamFinian Cunningham (born 1963) has written extensively on international affairs, with articles published in several languages. Originally from Belfast, Northern Ireland, he is a Master’s graduate in Agricultural Chemistry and worked as a scientific editor for the Royal Society of Chemistry, Cambridge, England, before pursuing a career in newspaper journalism. 

For over 20 years he worked as an editor and writer in major news media organizations, including The Mirror, Irish Times and Independent. 

Now a freelance journalist based in East Africa, his columns appear on RT, Sputnik, Strategic Culture Foundation and Press TV.
US, Europe & NATO risk all-out war by backing unhinged 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.
At a United Nations Security Council emergency meeting on Monday, the US, Britain and France pointedly refused to take on board Russia’s legal argument for why it felt obliged to detain the Ukrainian boats and 24 crew. The Western powers automatically sided with the version of events claimed by President Petro Poroshenko – that the Ukrainian Navy was attacked unlawfully by Russia.
The US, EU and NATO denounced Russia’s “aggression” and demanded that the Ukrainian vessels and crew be repatriated immediately, even though under Russian law there is a case for prosecution.
It is the West’s refusal to acknowledge facts that is part of the problem. Russia is continually accused of “annexing” Crimea in 2014 instead of the Western powers recognizing that the Black Sea peninsula voted in a constitutionally held referendum to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. Crimea was prompted to take that historic step because the US, EU and NATO had only the month before backed an illegal coup in Kiev against the elected Ukrainian government. That coup brought to power the present Kiev regime led by Poroshenko and a parliament dominated by neo-Nazi parties.
So, the problem here is a refusal by Western supporters of the dubious Kiev regime to accept the legal, historic reality that Crimea is part of Russia’s territory. Ships passing through the Kerch Strait between Russia’s mainland and Crimea are obliged to notify Russian maritime controls of passage. Russia has since reopened the strait to civilian cargo transport following the naval skirmish at the weekend.
When the Ukrainian Navy vessels violated legal procedures and entered Russian territorial limits, their action was aggressive, not Russia’s response.
Furthermore, there are already emerging signs that the Ukrainian naval transport was orchestrated for the purpose of inciting an incident.
Some of the detained crew members have admitted carrying out orders which they knew would be seen by Russia as provocative.
It has also been reported by US government-owned Radio Free Europe that the Ukrainian secret services (SBU) have confirmed that its officers were among the crew on the boats. The vessels were also armed. If the transfer was an innocent passage, why were secret services involved?
Recall that Ukrainian secret services have previously been caught staging sabotage operations in Crimea.
Another major background factor is the increasing NATO military buildup in eastern Ukraine and the Black Sea.
When Russian President Vladimir Putin officially opened the 19km bridge linking Russia’s mainland with Crimea in May earlier this year, there were calls in US and Ukrainian media for the structure to be sabotaged. Moscow has understandably stepped up security controls around the vital infrastructure, which cost $3.7 billion and is the longest bridge in Europe.
In recent months, the US and Britain have ordered increasing military deployment to the region under the guise of “training” and “assistance” to the Kiev regime forces.
Earlier this year, in July, the NATO alliance held naval drills, Sea Breeze, along with Ukrainian forces in the Black Sea. That’s in spite of the fact that Ukraine is not a member of NATO, although it is aspiring to join the 29-member US-led bloc at some time in the future.
It was the following month, in August, that Russia began stepping up its controls and searches of vessels through the Kerch Strait linking the Black Sea to the Sea of Azov. The latter leads to ports under the control of the Kiev regime such as Mariupol, which is adjacent to the breakaway Donetsk People’s Republic. The DPR and Luhansk People’s Republic broke away following the coup in Kiev in 2014 and have been under military attack for the past four years despite the so-called Minsk peace treaties. These are more facts that the Western backers of the Kiev regime refuse to deal with.
More NATO buildup continued in September with the supply of two gunboats by the US to the Ukrainian Navy for deployment in the Sea of Azov. Pentagon-linked publication Defense One described that supply as part of efforts by Washington and Kiev to develop a “mosquito navy” in order to skirmish with Russian forces.
Only four days before the latest naval clash, Britain’s Defense Minister Gavin Williamson announced the Royal Navy was to send HMS ‘Echo’ to patrol with Ukrainian special forces to “defend freedom and democracy.” Williamson said: “As long as Ukraine faces Russian hostilities, the United Kingdom will be a steadfast partner.
This is background to the simmering tensions in the Black Sea between Ukraine and Russia. The situation has arisen because of Western interference in Ukraine – primarily the coup in Kiev in February 2014. Yet, in all discussions about events since then, the Western powers are in denial of facts and their culpability. The recent militarization of the Black Sea by the NATO alliance is a stark provocation to Russia’s national security, but again the Western powers bury their collective heads in the sand.
Given the reckless indulgence by the US, Europe and NATO of the Kiev regime amid its ongoing violations against the populace in eastern Ukraine, its refusal to abide by the Minsk agreements, and its continual inflammatory and unhinged rhetoric against Russia, it should not be surprising if this same regime feels emboldened to provoke an armed confrontation with Moscow.
Arguably, the Kiev regime and its adulation of World War II Nazi collaborators never had any legitimacy in the first place. It continues to demonstrate its lack of legitimacy from the immense social problems in Ukraine of poverty, corruption, human rights violations, neo-Nazi paramilitaries running amok, and now martial law being imposed.
It remains to be seen if the recent naval provocation was carried out with the tacit approval of Washington and other NATO powers as a pretext for further militarization against Russia. The initial misplaced condemnations of Russia have subsided to more measured calls from US President Donald Trump and French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian for “restraint” and “dialogue.”
That might suggest Kiev’s failing President Poroshenko and his security services acted alone to order the naval confrontation as a desperate throw of the dice to escalate NATO and EU support for his shaky regime against Russia.
Trump’s comments hoping that Kiev and Russia would “straighten things out” sound like Washington is not behind the provocation and has no desire for a wider conflict. Just as well, because such a development is a gateway to all-out war.
Nevertheless, such a catastrophe is always a serious risk when Western powers indulge this unhinged Kiev regime.
Finian Cunningham has written extensively on international affairs, with articles published in several languages. He is a Master’s graduate in Agricultural Chemistry and worked as a scientific editor for the Royal Society of Chemistry, Cambridge, England, before pursuing a career in newspaper journalism. He is also a musician and songwriter. For nearly 20 years, he worked as an editor and writer in major news media organisations, including The Mirror, Irish Times and Independent.
This article was originally published by RT” 

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Yemen’s Al-Masirah Network is Blocked! Don’t be Happy, Crimes will always be Uncovered



In the battle between good and bad, surprises are not much surprising!
On Wednesday morning, Yemen’s al-Masirah TV, the voice of resistance amid the ongoing Saudi war on Yemen, was noticed by the company hosting its frequency on the NileSat satellite’s orbit that it submitted to the many political pressures by the US-Saudi aggression block the channel.
An hour and a half later, the measure went into effect. It happened for the second time in less than a month.
Commenting on the latest development, Mr. Hamed Rizq, Head of Political Programs at al-Masirah TV, told al-Ahed News:
“Targeting and banning al-Masirah TV off its audience in Yemen and the Arab world is not new; it is very much related to the field failure of the US-Saudi coalition countries in their aggression in Yemen, especially in the Western Coast battle in which they were inflicted heavy military failure. They were also exposed on the media level because they were promoting their ‘victories’ saying that they controlled al-Hudaydah, while al-Massirah TV and the Military Media was proving the opposite of all such rumors.”
He went on to list the reasons behind the measure as saying: “They also wanted to ban al-Masirah because of its educational role among the Yemeni people, which was clearly witnessed through the success in massive commemoration of the birth anniversary of Prophet Mohammad [PBUH]. This made them rise against the channel that proved influential among the people as well as in raising their morale, in addition to rising against the aggression in all forms and domains.”
While the opposite media proved its failure in the face of the Yemeni media, especially al-Masirah, they were obliged to deal with this failure by covering the truth of al-Masirah TV, the mirror that reflects the true situation, Rizq added.
“Moreover, the massacres committed by the aggression forces, and the escalating humanitarian situation that has been exposed and criticized by the world represent one of the reasons behind this practice.” The man stressed that al-Masirah plays a significant role in uncovering the “coalition’s” massacres and crimes.
A reason added is the Arab people’s solidarity with Yemen. The Yemeni media, al-Masirah in particular, play a key role in delivering injustice happening in Yemen to the world. Now in Tunisia, Morocco, Iraq, Lebanon and many other countries, there are popular movements standing in solidarity with Yemen and denouncing the Saudi crimes there, the Yemeni journalist said.
The previous causes are related to the meantime; but what about the coming days?
According to Mr. Rizq, targeting the channel would signal to an upcoming military escalation. It is an attempt to cover up more crimes the coalition is tending to commit against civilians in Yemen. It is also an early announcement of the failure of political path and negotiations being discussed, especially by UN envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths.
Anyhow, al-Masirah considers that this step is a testimony by the enemy about its effectiveness. We are not the first channel to be banned, which if it means something, then it is the bankruptcy of the opposite side, as well as the influence the channel is making among the public. This happens with al-Manar TV, the number one channel in the fight against the “Israeli” enemy. Al-Aqsa TV in Gaza was also banned.
“The battle of words between us and them will continue, and we will certainly prevail,” Rizq stressed.
Indeed, in the time of open media, they cannot hide the truth or blind the people’s eyes from following up the updates in Yemen and in any other place.
Al-Masirah channel noted that its broadcast can be followed instead on the Russian satellite AM 44, at frequency 11177 vertical, coding rate 3000.
It is also possible for people inside Yemen to follow the broadcast via radio, online and live streaming, in addition to the social media networks that will continue to operate as usual.
In the same respect, al-Masirah considered that act is a legal breach under the signed agreements, and that the network has the full legal right to continue broadcasting.

Hezbollah: Blocking of Resistance Media Outlets Proves Their Efficiency

Hezbollah flag
Hezbollah denounced on Wednesday NileSat’s decision to block the broadcast of Yemen’s Al-Massira TV Channel, considering it as an Immoral move aimed at subduing Arab people.
In a statement, Hezbollah maintained that NileSat move reflects its complete obedience to the will of the forces launching the Saudi-led aggression on Yemen and proves the efficiency of the honest media in exposing their war crimes as well as cases of failure in the battlefield.
Hezbollah demanded NileSat administration to undo its decision, expressing solidarity with Al-Massira TV and the “brave” people of Yemen.
Hezbollah also condemned the Zionist step of blocking the Palestinian resistance websites, stressing that this proves the success of the resistance media in exposing the enemy’s crimes and raise the morale of the Palestinian people.
Hezbollah expressed solidarity with the resistance media outlets, reiterating support to them in their struggle to liberate the land and the sanctities.
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The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!