In These New Times

A new paradigm for a post-imperial world

Europe’s gas alliance with Russia is a match made in heaven

Posted by seumasach on November 5, 2019

M.K.bhadrakumar

Indian Punchline

3rd November, 2019

Amidst the excitement over the killing of the ISIS chief Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, a development of much impact on international security passed by when Denmark made the innocuous announcement on October 30 that it would permit the proposed Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to pass through its exclusive economic zone. 

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NATO report exposes the West’s 5G quandary.

Posted by seumasach on August 13, 2019

NATO report exposes the West’s 5G quandary.

Cailean Bochanan

13th August, 2019

National Security Adviser, John Bolton has been in London this week hoping, amongst other things, to pressure the UK government into dropping Huawei from it’s 5G project. With a New Cold War in the air the Americans have raised the spectre of a threat to national security, of China using it’s 5G expertise to spy. We already spy on each other using the Five Eyes network to get round restrictions on intelligence agencies spying on their own citizens: China would be an unwelcome guest at this particular party. Bolton has already claimed his lobbying has provoked a rethink on behalf of the UK government in “appreciation” of the US point of view. If Brexit means anything at all it means rallying to the Americans , a return to Oceania and an Orwellian standoff with Eurasia: that is why Johnson is prime minister.

So, in conformity with this geopolitical realignment it is logical that the UK abandon it’s flirtation with Chinese technology and and put it’s Orwellian 5G project back in the safe hands of Western companies. What could be the problem? The problem according to a recent NATO study, “Huawei, 5G, and China as a Security Threat” is that Huawei “is currently the only company that can produce ‘at scale and cost‘ all the elements of a 5G network, with its closest competitors Nokia and Ericsson not yet able to offer a viable alternative”. In other words, Huawei is indispensable! Well, that is a problem.It is also a humiliation for the West: we have already lost the technological race for 5G.

So the question isn’t really whether Huawei should be involved in 5G or not, it’s whether we have 5G or not, at all. Well, I for one prefer that question. 5G is just one more nefarious telecommunications industry project threatening public health, as is extensively and reliably documented, as well as civil liberties and privacy. And it does so on a massively increased scale. It also has sinister undertones of transhumanism an ideological current which goes back to the English renaissance which views humanity as “work in progress”. It is familiar from the works of Francis Bacon, the Darwins and the Huxleys. The musings of Elon Musk on microchips in the brain are enough to make us nostalgic for the good old days. Can’t we just go back to 1984?

But returning to question of 5G or not 5G, what solutions does the NATO report come up with?

“With a binary choice of ‘take it or leave it’ not among the options – there are as of yet no equivalent alternatives to Huawei 5G technology; the West is neither able nor willing to afford a technological stagnation, and with the expected socioeconomic benefits in the promise of 5G, states will likely remain pragmatic in their approaches. Whether by issuing security guidance to reinforce the security of critical government and commercial functions, strengthening risk assessment and management processes, or agreeing on transparency and accountability mechanisms, national responses will likely seek to improve risk mitigation.”

Logic doesn’t seem to be a NATO strongpoint: with no available alternatives to Huawei the choice is precisely ”take it or leave it”. The rest is what the French call “langue de bois” and the anglo-saxons would call, more bluntly, “bullshit”. So in addition to not recognising the problem NATO doesn’t offer any solutions.

The truth is that the Western model, or, more specifically, the Anglo-American model has exhausted itself in terms of major infrastructural project development. The scandal in the UK over prematurely obsolete schools and hospitals built through private finance initiatives or so-called public/private partnerships has dramatically exposed this reality. A children’s hospital in Edinburgh has just been “completed” for what will eventually amount to half a billion pounds. However, it can’t be opened due to structural flaws and already union representatives are talking about the need to demolish it. The US/UK are bottom of the league when it comes to fibre optic connections into people’s homes. Verizon won a contract to provide fibre optic to homes in New York. They failed to do so and are being sued by the City authorities. In fact, 5G is a poor man’s fibre optic but it still requires massive, and politically impossible, fibre optic roll-out and investment in masts placed in close proximity. Plus, of course, Huawei technology.

In contrast, the Chinese excel in long term, developmental and infrastructural projects. Through the Belt and Road Initiative they are building roads, bridges, airports, ports , high speed trains. Unfortunately, it also involves 5G, for the moment. If 5G was being carried exclusively by Western companies the American NSA would have unrestricted access to all data and therefore, total political control. The Chinese have effectively blocked that. However, we, the people, do not have to choose between a total surveillance state run by the USA or by the Chinese. Not because slaves can’t choose their masters but because we choose not to be slaves. We can simply reject 5G outright as we have every right to do as it constitutes an assault on our persons and our privacy. Italy leads the way in doing precisely that, with growing opposition at very level of civil society, the professions, local authorities and NGOs. Just as 5G epitomises an emerging technocratic elite governance, the opposition to it is a reaffirmation of democracy and citizenship. Let’s make technology our servant and not our master.

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Russia, Turkey, Iran: Adversaries of the West’s NATO alliance

Posted by seumasach on August 7, 2019

Telegraph hawk Con Coughlin laments the demise of the Western Alliance. But don’t they still have Oceania- as in Orwell’s 1984? If so, it’s a motley crew under the erratic leadership of Trump with Dad’s Army bringing up the rear under Captain Johnson, Brazil’s thirty families representative Bolsonaro hoping for some rich pickings and an increasingly sceptical ANZAC division hoping they don’t completely destroy good business with China.

Con Coughlin

Gateston Insitute

5th August, 2019

Germany’s outright rejection of Washington’s request [to support Washington’s proposal for a maritime protection force in the Arabian Gulf to protect shipping from attacks by Iran] is likely to inflame tensions further between Washington and Berlin. U.S. President Donald J. Trump is already at odds with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on a range of issues, from Germany’s obstinate refusal to meet its Nato funding commitments to its pursuit of closer energy ties with Russia through the construction of the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline.

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Why did the US exit INF Treaty? What you’re not being told

Posted by seumasach on August 7, 2019

Darius Shahtahmasebi

RT

6th August, 2019

US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper is halfway through his tour of the Asia-Pacific region. The tour’s timing, coming just weeks after Esper was officially sworn in, affirms the notion that the Pentagon’s top priority is China.

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War profiteers and the demise of the US Military-Industrial Complex

Posted by seumasach on July 22, 2019

Dimitri Orlov

Club Orlov

16th July, 2019

Within the vast bureaucratic sprawl of the Pentagon there is a group in charge of monitoring the general state of the military-industrial complex and its continued ability to fulfill the requirements of the national defense strategy. Office for acquisition and sustainment and office for industrial policy spends some $100,000 a year producing an Annual Report to Congress. It is available to the general public. It is even available to the general public in Russia, and Russian experts had a really good time poring over it.

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De-dollarizing the American financial empire

Posted by seumasach on July 15, 2019

Interview with Michael Hudson

Guns and Butter

7th July, 2019

Economist Michael Hudson continues his discussion of Super Imperialism: The Economic Strategy of American Empire with a focus on US monetary imperialism; President Trump’s demand for lower interest rates undercuts America’s requirement for foreign investment to fund its domestic and balance of payments deficit, increases the carry trade and turns IMF and World Bank policies on the US; analysis of US economic domination of the world from its position as the world’s largest creditor post-WWI; analysis of US economic domination of the world from its position as the world’s largest debtor after the 1971 close of America’s gold window; emergence of the dollar-debt standard; how war has bankrupted the US; the difference between imperialism and super imperialism; US bribes foreign governments; China’s banking system; China and Russia stockpile gold as the world breaks out of dollar domination.

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Modi wades into eurasianism

Posted by seumasach on June 17, 2019

M.K.Bhadrakumar

Indian Punchline

17th June, 2019

“If international diplomacy indulges in symbolism, this must be one of the most poignant ones in world politics in the recent times. The RIC has always been a red rag for the US — ever since the great Soviet strategic thinker and Kremlin statesman Yevgeny Maksimovich Primakov first proposed the tantalising idea in 1999. The profound symbolism cannot be lost on Trump that India is consorting with the two “revisionist powers” on the planet (Russia and China) which, according to the US, are each working its way toward making a power grab on the world stage.”

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The New Silk Roads reach the next level

Posted by seumasach on April 30, 2019

Pepe Escobar

Asia Times

29th April, 2019

 

The Belt and Road Forum in Beijing was a graphic demonstration of how tactical adjustments are essential to enhance the appeal of a complex overall strategy. Talk about a turbo-charged 4.0 version of the legendary Deng Xiaoping maxim “crossing the river while feeling the stones.”

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Reporter Sharmine Narwani on the secret history of America’s defeat in Syria

Posted by seumasach on April 30, 2019

“The U.S. was already exiting the Middle East before the so-called “Arab uprisings” kicked off. Whoever in the U.S. national security apparatus made the decision to stick around and redirect these uprisings against regional adversaries made a colossal mistake. I want to write about this one day because it’s important. I believe the Syrian conflict constitutes the main battlefield in a kind of World War III. The world wars were, in essence, great-power wars, after which the global order reshuffled a bit and new global institutions were established.

Look around you now. We have had a reshuffle in the balance of power in recent years, with Russia, China, Iran in ascendance and Europe and North America in decline. That’s not to say that Washington, London or Paris don’t have levers left to pull: They do. But it is on the back of the Syrian conflict that a great-power battle was fought, and in its wake, new international institutions for finance, defense and policymaking have been born or transformed.

I’m not just talking about the strengthening of the BRICS [Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa], the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the Eurasian Union, etc. I mean the world’s networks are shifting hands, too. What will happen to Western-controlled shipping routes now that Asia has started to build faster, cheaper land routes? Will the SWIFT [bank messaging] system survive when an alternative is agreed upon to bypass U.S. sanctions everywhere? There are so many examples of these shifts. It’s not to say that they are due to events in Syria, but rather that Syria triggered the great-power battle that unleashed the potential of this new order much more quickly and efficiently.

Keep in mind that World War III was never going to be like the other two conventionally fought wars…. It was always going to be an irregular war that would escalate on multiple fronts — not just regime change events, but financial pressures, sanctions, propaganda, political subversion activities, destabilization, increased terrorism, proxy fights and so on. The battle for global hegemony really began to unfold over Syria, though, when the Russians, Iranians and Chinese decided to draw a line and put up a fight. The world changed after that.”

Interview with Patrick Lawrence

Salon

21st April ,2019

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China seeks to reassure Europe at Croatia summit

Posted by seumasach on April 22, 2019

Addressing the session in Dubrovnik, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras described the decision to join the Chinese initiative as “a very crucial moment for global and regional developments.”

“We have to leave behind the crisis and find new models of regional and global cooperation,” he said, adding that it must be done with “full respect” of the EU rules, Tsipras said.

Yahoo

12th April, 2019

DUBROVNIK, Croatia (AP) — China’s prime minister promised Friday that his government will respect European standards and fair trade, seeking to allay concerns that it is flouting European Union competition rules with huge investments on the continent.

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China’s belt and road continues to win over Europe while technocrats scream and bowl

Posted by seumasach on April 22, 2019

Mathew Ehret

Strategic Culture

20th April, 2019

On April 10th, China’s Premier Li Keqiang celebrated the completion of the 1st phase of the 2.5 kilometer Chinese-built Pelgesac Bridge in Croatia across the Bay of Mali Ston alongside Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic. This ceremony marked a striking victory as the following day ushered in an important 16+1 Heads of State summit that saw Greece inducted as the newest member of a new alliance of Central and Eastern European nations who wish to cooperate with China. At this summit held on April 12, Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras stated that this was “a very crucial moment for global and regional developments” and “we have to leave behind the crisis and find new models of regional and global cooperation.”

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Posted in Battle for Europe, Multipolar world | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

 
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