maandag 13 maart 2023

Europa Vernietigt Zichzelf (37)

Maria Zakharova, hoofd van de Afdeling Informatie en Pers van het ministerie van Buitenlandse Zaken van de Russische Federatie verklaarde op 10 maart 2023: 

This week, Ukraine's Prime Minister Shmygal admitted Ukraine receives most its aid from the West in loans. In the last year its national debt increased from $13 billion to $111 billion,

om vervolgens de vraag op te werpen: 

What kind of freedom is this? For citizens of Ukraine, this is real slavery.’ 

Hoewel dit een voor de hand liggende vraag is, doet de voltallige westerse ‘vrije pers’ het voorkomen dat Europa en de VS in het kader van ‘de vrijheid en democratie’ het Zelensky-regime in Kiev belangeloos steunen. Daarbij verzwijgt de ‘corporate press’ ondermeer het volgende: ondanks het feit dat geen enkel buitenlands concern ‘direct’ land mag bezitten in Oekraïne is bekend dat ‘US corporations now own Ukraine.’ Via Oekraïense zetbazen valt nu een ‘big percentage of their best growing land’ indirect in handen van grote westerse institutionele beleggers en de westerse agro-industriële macht. Il Manifesto, algemeen beschouwd als Italië’s meest onafhankelijke krant, berichtte op 3 juni 2022:

For several years now, a series of reports by the Oakland Institute economic observatory have documented the macroeconomic interests that have made the former Soviet republic an object of intense contention since the fall of the USSR.

Post-Soviet Ukraine, with its 32 million arable hectares of rich and fertile black soil (löss. svh), has the equivalent of one-third of all existing agricultural land in the European Union. With the end of socialist collectivization, an unprecedented amount of ‘virgin’ hectares have ‘come into play’ to be put on the market, a potentially tasty morsel for banks and agribusiness multinationals.

It is, after all, the much-touted ‘breadbasket of Europe,’ with an annual production of 64 million tons of grain and seeds, among the world’s largest producers of barley, wheat and sunflower oil (for the latter, Ukraine produces about 30 percent of the world total). Since the 1990s, the race has been on for businesses to get their hands on what Jeff Rowe, DuPont’s director for Europe, describes as ‘one of the fastest-growing agricultural markets in the world.’

‘Ukraine had been hardest hit by… the “shock therapy” of capitalist restoration in Eastern Europe and Russia itself,’ writes British economist Michael Roberts about this stage in the country’s history. Indeed, its economy has suffered: during the 30 years after independence, incomes and quality of life have remained below 1990 levels and poverty is rampant. Not for everyone, of course — the ‘conversion’ to capitalism has followed the usual pattern: a class of oligarchs and a narrow elite have enriched themselves disproportionately by despoiling the public sector with the complicity of the political class…

According to Frédéric Mousseau, director of the Oakland Institute, the ‘geoeconomic’ dispute over Ukraine represents the biggest clash between the two rival blocs since the Cold War.

With the events of Maidan in 2014, the Western camp prevailed, while Putin retaliated by taking Crimea and waging war in the Donbass. The developments marked the beginning of Ukraine’s ‘annexation’ into the Euro-Atlantic economic sphere, described by Mousseau and Elisabeth Fraser in a 2014 report entitled The Corporate Takeover of Ukrainian Agriculture, which gives an account of the redoubled push by Western financial institutions to ‘throw open the nation’s vast agricultural sector to foreign corporations.’

From the West came arms and money in the form of assistance packages from the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. As usual, the cash was strongly tied to reforms that Ukraine was required to implement, all under the banner of fiscal restraint and austerity. Also according to Mousseau, the drive in Ukraine to privatize the land market is unprecedented in recent history. To limit unrestrained privatization, a moratorium on the sale of land to foreigners had been imposed in 2001. Since then, the repeal of this rule has been a main goal of Western institutions. As early as 2013, for instance, the World Bank provided an $89 million loan for the development of a deed and land title program needed for the commercialization of state-owned and cooperative land.

Furthermore, Western banks are imposing the optimization and consolidation of agribusinesses into large entities at the expense of small producers, who still constitute the majority in the country, with the goal of increasing “added value,” and, in the words of a 2019 World Bank paper, ‘accelerating private investment in agriculture.’ The same report states that ‘a 30-percent productivity increase in agriculture could result in an additional 4.4 percent Ukrainian GDP growth in five years, and 12.5 percent growth over ten years.’ It is safe to assume that the growth rates of private agricultural producers were expected to see far greater increases.

Despite the moratorium on land sales to foreigners, by 2016, ten multinational agricultural corporations had already come to control 2.8 million hectares of land. Today, some estimates speak of 3.4 million hectares in the hands of foreign companies and Ukrainian companies with foreign funds as shareholders. Other estimates are as high as 6 million hectares. The moratorium on sales, which the US State Department, IMF and World Bank had repeatedly called to be removed, was finally repealed by the Zelensky government in 2020, ahead of a final referendum on the issue scheduled for 2024. Furthermore, in January, a report by Usaid, the U.S. Agency for Assistance and Cooperation, lamented the absence of a reliable land market in the country that was limiting economic growth.

This despite the fact that an analysis by Open Democracy published in October revealed that ten private companies controlled 71 percent of the Ukrainian agricultural market, including, ‘in addition to the Ukrainian oligarchy, multinational corporations such as Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), Bunge, Cargill, Louis Dreyfus, and the Chinese state-owned company COFCO.’ According to the Oakland Institute’s latest report on the subject, the list now also includes multinational corporations such as Luxembourg-based Kernel, the US holding company NCH Capital, the Saudi-based Continental Farmers and the French AgroGenerations.

Among this long list, European companies particularly stand out, and the role of the EU is increasing, especially after the signing of the economic association agreement between Ukraine and the European Union that came into force in 2017. That agreement, denounced at the time by Russia as a backdoor to facilitating the entry of Western multinationals, includes the promotion of “modern agricultural production … including the use of biotechnologies,” an apparent opening towards GMO crops on Ukrainian (non-EU) fields. Furthermore, agribusiness development in Ukraine and Eastern Europe is part of the European Commission’s strategic plan to boost “protein crops” and reconvert production in those regions to mainly soybean, for which meeting current EU needs is still largely dependent on imports from Argentina and Brazil.

The war now seems likely to disrupt the current grand neoliberal project in the short term, mainly because of disruptions in the export supply chain. Another unknown concerns how Ukraine’s limitations in its current condition might affect Chinese distribution routes to Europe under China’s Belt & Road plan, to which the country had signed on. Nonetheless, in the context of a global geo-economic realignment for which the war promises to be a crucial turning point, Ukraine can be predicted to remain a major point of focus, albeit in the midst of severe global instability. 

Om een definitieve greep te krijgen op ’s werelds ‘breadbasket’ hebben de EU en de VS sinds 2014 vele miljarden geïnvesteerd in de bewapening en opleiding van de Oekraïense strijdkrachten. Tot nu toe vergeefs, aangezien het Russische leger — dat tot nu toe,  maart 2023, nog steeds niet op volle kracht is ingezet — aan de winnende hand is. Ondertussen is, volgens de Oekraïense premier en zakenman Denys Shmyhal de schuld aan het Westen meer dan verachtvoudigd. Bovendien is er volgens betrouwbare bronnen sprake van honderdduizenden Oekraïense doden en zwaar gewonden, de overgrote meerderheid militairen. De Amerikaanse onafhankelijke journalist Michael Tracey meldde op 6 maart 2023 dat de Democratische senator van Virginia Mark Warner ‘vows to keep funding the Ukraine war because “chewing up” the Russian army has always been a central US objective, and “we're having the Ukrainians do that right now, in a sense, for us.”’ Tracey wees terecht op de absurditeit dat ‘people still thrash with anger over use of the term “proxy war.”’ 

Deze ‘proxy war’ is sinds 2014 uitgelokt door de NAVO onder aanvoering van de VS, zoals ondermeer Henry Kissinger al in 2015 benadrukte toen hij als één van de bekendste geopolitieke deskundigen ter wereld er publiekelijk voor waarschuwde dat onder de regering Obama/Biden ‘breaking Russia has become an objective; the long-range purpose should be to integrate it.’ De Russische autoriteiten namen, in tegenstelling tot de westerse politici en mainstream-pers, deze waarschuwing onmiddellijk serieus, zeker aangezien de NAVO en de rest van het militair-industrieel complex inmiddels 17 keer meer spendeerde aan oorlogsvoorbereidingen dan de Russische Federatie. Kissinger trachtte de Amerikaanse elite ervan te overtuigen dat ‘If we treat Russia seriously as a great people, we need at an early stage to determine whether their concerns can be reconciled with our necessities.’ Vergeefs allemaal, aangezien het Amerikaans ‘exceptionalisme’ het ware elite-geloof is, zoals ondermeer blijkt uit het feit dat de VS 93 procent van zijn bestaan in oorlog is geweest. De VS bestaat alleen bij groei en moet om te kunnen overleven mentaal en fysiek gemobiliseerd blijven. Alleen de high-tech wapenindustrie in de VS is elk jaar weer winstgevend, de rest is overgeheveld naar de lage lonen landen, van Mexico tot Azië. Alleen op het gebied van grootschalig geweld voelen Washington en Wall Street zich superieur aan de rest van de mensheid. Het feit dat China en Rusland weigeren zich te schikken naar de eisen van ‘Amerika’ bewijst dat het Amerikaans imperialisme op zijn grenzen is gestoten. Als weinig andere westerlingen beseft Kissinger dat deze historische omslag een groot gevaar voor de wereldvrede betekent, omdat de VS de loop van de geschiedenis weigert te accepteren. Daardoor zag Kissingerj zich in 2019 nogmaals genoodzaakt te benadrukken dat ‘those countries that used to be exceptional and used to be unique, have to get used to the fact that they have a rival.’ Met andere woorden: de huidige westerse oorlogszuchtige propaganda van politici en pers is ronduit misdadig, en dreigt de toekomst van ons nageslacht te vernietigen. 

Showtime: Kajsa Ollongren en haar echtgenote.

Gezien de bloedbaden en de verspilling van westerse oorlogsmaterieel is de bewering van de bellicose D’66 minister van Defensie, Kajsa Ollongren, op 3 maart 2023 ronduit misdadig toen zij in een public-relations filmpje met grote stelligheid verklaarde dat ‘De-escaleren op dit moment door een actie van Oekraïne of van ons, eigenlijk gewoon niet [kan],’ en dat ‘op dit moment we Oekraïne moeten blijven steunen om hun eigen land te verdedigen.’ Afgaande op het feit dat honderdduizenden Oekraïners zijn gedood of verminkt, en dat de verwoestingen van het land elk moment doorgaan, getuigde haar stelling dat de oorlogszuchtige ‘Verenigde Staten voor ons een ontzettend belangrijke partner [zijn],’ van een criminele onverschilligheid voor het lot van tevens de Nederlandse bevolking die nu het risico loopt slachtoffer te worden van een nucleaire Holocaust, een ontwikkeling waarover alleen door onze ‘ontzettend belangrijke partner’ wordt beslist zodra de tijd daarvoor rijp is, en dus niet door mevrouw Ollongren die tot voor kort, volgens eigen zeggen, niet eens het verschil wist tussen een majoor en een sergeant. Hier is sprake van een combinatie van onnozelheid en misdadigheid. Kajsa Ollongren is een exponent van het huidige totalitaire technocratisch fascisme.

Ollongren’s misdadigheid berust op haar geloof in massaal geweld waarbij uiteindelijk geen onderscheid kan worden gemaakt tussen combattanten en non-combattanten. Misdadig is eveneens het feit dat zij de waarschuwingen van gerenommeerde geopolitieke zwaargewichten als Henry Kissinger en eminente Rusland-experts als de Amerikaanse hoogleraren John Mearsheimer en Stephen F. Cohen blijft negeren. Daarentegen besteedde The Strategic Culture Foundation, een platform ‘for exclusive analysis, research and policy comment on Eurasian and global affairs,’ wel degelijk aandacht aan de woorden van de Amerikaanse voormalige minister van Buitenlandse Zaken en oud National Security Adviser Kissinger. November 2019 wees The Strategic Culture Foundation erop dat: 

Former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger made prudent remarks recently when he said the United States is no longer a uni-power and that it must recognize the reality of China as an equal rival…

If the US cannot find some modus vivendi with China, then the outcome could be a catastrophic conflict worst than any previous world war, he admonished.

Speaking publicly in New York on November 14, the veteran diplomat urged the US and China to resolve their ongoing economic tensions cooperatively and mutually, adding: ‘It is no longer possible to think that one side can dominate the other.’

In other words, he is negating (ontkent. svh) the erroneous consensus held in Washington which asserts that the US is somehow ‘exceptional,’ a ‘uni-power’ and the ‘indispensable nation.’ This consensus has grown since the early 1990s after the collapse of the Soviet Union, when the US viewed itself as the sole super-power. That morphed into a more virulent ideology of ‘full-spectrum dominance.’ Thence, the past three decades of unrelenting US criminal wars and regime-change operations across the planet, throwing the whole world into chaos.

Kissinger’s frank assessment is a breath of fresh air amid the stale and impossibly arrogant self-regard held by too many American politicians who view their nation as an unparalleled power which brooks no other.

Donderdag 17 februari 2022 benadrukte op zijn beurt Jack Matlock,  voormalig Amerikaans ambassadeur in de Sovjet Unie: 

Ukraine Crisis Stems Directly from Post-Cold War Push to Expand NATO… the U.S.-led expansion of NATO following the end of the Cold War helped lay the groundwork for the current standoff over Ukraine. He argues that continued escalation could stoke another nuclear arms race, and lays out some of the parallels with the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis. 

Maar ook deze informatie werd door de westerse mainstream-pers verzwegen, evenals het feit dat de oorlog in Oekraïne door Washington en de EU werd uitgelokt, zoals onder andere bleek uit de uitspraak van voormalig bondskanselier Angela Merkel in december 2022 dat:

‘The 2014 Minsk Agreement was an attempt to buy time for Ukraine. Ukraine used this time to become stronger, as you can see today. Ukraine in 2014-2015 and Ukraine today are not the same… it was exactly what gave Ukraine the priceless time.’

The confession made by Angela Merkel’s in her interview for Die Zeit that the Minsk Agreements were signed in order to buy time for Ukraine to prepare for a military standoff with Russia could be used for an investigation in a tribunal, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said. 

Dat die oorlog werd uitgelokt bleek opnieuw op 9 maart 2023 toen de niet democratisch gekozen voorzitter van de Europese Commissie, de conservatieve Duitse Ursula von der Leyen, die eerder vanwege corruptie moest opstappen als minister van Defensie, Canada prees vanwege ‘het trainen van Oekraïense soldaten sinds 2015,’ dus na de ondertekening van het Vredes Akkoord in Minsk. Dat de VS de Russische Federatie bedriegt is, gezien de oorlogszuchtigheid van Washington, niet vreemd, maar dat de Europese Unie een buurland en tevens nucleaire grootmacht misleidde demonstreert de krankzinnigheid van de huidige generatie politici. En dit alles louter en alleen in een vergeefse poging om de hegemonie van het ineenstortend Amerikaans imperium in stand te houden. 

Hoewel de polderpers de uitspraken van kritische experts voortdurend censureert bestaat er nog steeds een vrije journalistiek die via alternatieve kanalen actief is:

Kissinger’s caution about danger of conflict was reiterated separately by veteran journalist John Pilger, who warned in an exclusive interview for Strategic Culture Foundation this week that, presumed ‘American exceptionalism is driving the world to war.’  

Zelfs in het technocratisch bolwerk de EU zijn er nog enkele dissidente stemmen te horen. Zo verklaarde de progressieve Ierse politicus in het Europese Parlement, Mick Wallace, in maart 2023 dat de 'Declaration on EU-NATO Cooperation’ in strijd is met de realiteit: 

I don’t believe that NATO is committed to promoting and safeguarding peace and security. NATO’s expansion, meddling and provocation in Ukraine laid the ground for this war i n Europe at the moment.

What had NATO ever done for peace and security? Is Afghanistan peaceful and secure after twenty years of illegal invasion ands occupation? Is Libya peaceful and secure after the regime change war in 2011?

What about Syria, Iraq and Yemen? The U.S. and U.K. and their allies have helped destroy these countries, killing millions of people in the process and displacing many  millions more.

The Declaration-talks about conflicts providing fertile ground for terrorist groups. Were those peacekeepers we partnered with in Libya? Who exactly was being trained with Operation Timber Sycamore? (zie onder. svh) What did Jake Sullivan mean when he told Hillary Clinton in 2012: ‘Al Qaeda is on our side in Syria’ (zie onder. svh)? 

Enige achtergrond informatie:

Timber Sycamore was a classified weapons supply and training program run by the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and supported by some Arab intelligence services, including Saudi intelligence. Launched in 2012 or 2013, it supplied money, weaponry and training to Syrian opposition militias of the Free Syrian Army fighting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the Syrian civil war. According to US officials, the program was run by the CIA's Special Activities Division and has trained thousands of rebels. President Barack Obama secretly authorized the CIA to begin arming Syria's embattled rebels in 2013. The program became public knowledge in mid-2016.

One consequence of the program has been a flood of US weapons including assault rifles, mortars and rocket-propelled grenades into the Middle East's black market. Critics saw it as ineffective and expensive, and raised concerns about diversion of weapons to jihadist groups and about Timber Sycamore-backed rebels fighting alongside the al-Nusra Front.

In July 2017, US officials stated that Timber Sycamore would be phased out, with funds possibly redirected to fighting the Islamic State (IS), or to offering rebel forces defensive capabilities. 

Jake Sullivan is een ‘American political advisor who currently serves as the United States National Security Advisor to President Joe Biden. He was previously Director of Policy to President Barack Obama, National Security Advisor to then Vice President Biden and Deputy Chief of Staff to Secretary Hillary Clinton at the U.S. Department of State.’ 

Met betrekking tot Jake Sullivan schreef op 23 april 2022 de uitstekende joods-Amerikaanse onderzoeksjournalist Aaron Maté onder de kop ‘Al Qaeda is on our side’: how Obama/Biden team empowered terrorist networks in Syria’:

Hours after the Feb. 3 U.S. military raid in northern Syria that left the leader of ISIS and multiple family members dead, President Biden delivered a triumphant White House address.

The late-night Special Forces operation in Syria’s Idlib province, Biden proclaimed, was a ‘testament to America’s reach and capability to take out terrorist threats no matter where they hide around the world.’

Unmentioned by the president, and virtually all media accounts of the assassination, was the critical role that top members of his administration played during the Obama years in creating the Al Qaeda-controlled hideout where ISIS head Abu Ibrahim al-Qurayshi, as well as his slain predecessor, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, found their final refuge.

In waging a multi-billion dollar covert war in support of the insurgency against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, top Obama officials who now serve under Biden made it American policy to enable and arm terrorist groups that attracted jihadi fighters from across the globe. This regime change campaign, undertaken one decade after Al Qaeda attacked the U.S. on 9/11, helped a sworn U.S. enemy establish the Idlib safe haven that it still controls today.

A concise articulation came from Jake Sullivan to his then-State Department boss Hillary Clinton in a February 2012 email: ‘AQ [Al Qaeda] is on our side in Syria.’

Sullivan, the current national security adviser, is one of many officials who oversaw the Syria proxy war under Obama to now occupy a senior post under Biden. This group includes Secretary of State Antony Blinken, climate envoy John Kerry, USAID Administrator Samantha Power, Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, NSC Middle East coordinator Brett McGurk, and State Department Counselor Derek Chollet.

Jake Sullivan: ‘AQ [Al Qaeda] is on our side in Syria,’ the then-State Dept. official–and current national security adviser–told Hillary Clinton in a Feb. 2012 email.

Their efforts to remake the Middle East via regime change, not just in Syria but earlier in Libya, led to the deaths of Americans–including Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other U.S. officials in Benghazi in 2012; the slaughter of countless civilians; the creation of millions of refugees; and ultimately, Russia’s entry into the Syrian battlefield.

Contacted through their current U.S. government agencies, none of the Obama-Biden principals offered comment on their policy of supporting an Al Qaeda-dominated insurgency in Syria.

The Obama-Biden team’s record in Syria resonates today as many of its members handle the unfolding crisis in Ukraine. As in Syria, the U.S. is flooding a chaotic war zone with weapons in a dangerous proxy conflict with Russia, with long-term ramifications that are impossible to foresee. ‘I deeply worry that what’s going to happen next is that we will see Ukraine turn into Syria,’ Democratic Senator Chris Coons told CBS News on April 17.

Based on declassified documents, news reports, and scattered admissions of U.S. officials, this overlooked history of how the Obama-Biden team’s effort to oust the Assad regime — in concert with allies including Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Turkey — details the series of discrete decisions that ultimately led the U.S. to empower terror networks bent on its destruction. 

De Nederlandse mainstream-media verzwijgen dit nog steeds. Meer daarover de volgende keer.

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