UKRAINIAN SOLDIER CONFIRMS: UKRAINE’S MILITARY SHOT DOWN MALAYSIAN MH17 PLANE

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U.S. allies got on board with that and agreed to hiked sanctions against Russia

by ERIC ZUESSE | INFOWARS.COM | DECEMBER 18, 2014

A Ukrainian soldier who was part of the crew that operated the supposed missile-battery that the Ukrainian Government claims shot down the Malaysian MH17 airliner on July 17th has testified publicly for the first time, saying that the missile-battery was operated by the Ukrainian military, not by the rebels as asserted, and that he and his former crew-mates who operated it laughed when they heard their Government say that this missile-battery was operated by rebels and had shot the airliner down.

An English-translated transcript of the December 15th Russian-language interview with this soldier was posted at UkraineWar.Info on December 17th by Michael Collins, an investigative journalist with UkraineWar.Info who has been following very closely the multiple investigations that are proceeding into the cause of the downing.

This testimony confirms the accumulating prior, already overwhelming and even-more-convincing evidence, which is linked to in my latest article on the topic, here, all of which evidence indicates that either one or else two Ukrainian fighter-jets intentionally shot this airliner down — that it was not an error by rebels who had mis-identified this airliner as being a bomber from the Ukrainian Government, such as the Ukrainian Government and its sponsor the U.S. Government claim.

Regarding the reason why the Ukrainian Government did this, it, too, is clear: U.S. President Obama needed a startling incident in order to obtain from the EU and other U.S.-allied nations their participation in heavily increased economic sanctions to weaken Russia. As soon as this plane was downed, both the Ukrainian Government and the Obama Administration claimed that they possessed convincing proof that it had been downed by pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine’s former southeast. All U.S. allies got on board with that and agreed to hiked sanctions against Russia.

This “false flag” event (as such government fakeries are called in the intelligence communities) succeeded, just as did Hitler’s burning down the Reichstag and blaming it on leftists, which was the event that enabled him to seize total power in Germany.

THIS JUST IN (3:21PM Eastern time in U.S.) from Michael Collins: “George [Eliason, a third member of our team at UkraineWar.Info, and a resident inside the conflict-zone] says that due to the pub from the article, the ukraine govt took down their ‘damning’ pic of BUK 312 today and that the reporter who did the interview is underground and fleeing the country.”

So, the reason why Ukrainians are reluctant to go public about their lying Government is obvious. And, all of the ‘news’ media there are owned by Ukrainian, or, in some cases, by American, oligarchs. (The American ones do it through ‘nonprofit’ foundations they create, which are co-funded by the American Government. The U.S. oligarch then gets tax-write-offs, plus co-funding by U.S. taxpayers, to save him still more money on his scheme.)

New Russian sanctions bill to be signed by end of week – White House

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A new bill imposing further sanctions on Russia is to be signed by US President Barack Obama by the end of the week, a White House spokesman told a news briefing Tuesday.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest said that Obama is expected to sign new legislation this week despite preliminary concerns about its content. “I would anticipate that it would get done before the end of the week,” he said.

However, he said that the bill has provided a degree of flexibility required by the president.

“That said, because it does preserve the president’s flexibility to carry out the strategy, he does intend to sign the bill,” Earnest said.

Obama was under pressure from both Republicans and Democrats after the Senate granted final approval to the bill late Saturday. The bill will see some $350 million provided to Ukraine by way of assistance.

“On behalf of the people’s House, I urge President Obama to sign this bipartisan legislation,” House Speaker John Boehner said in a statement on Monday.

The bill would additionally require the further imposition of conditional sanctions on the defense sector, such as penalties on state-owned arms dealer Rosoboronexport (among other defense companies) as well as connected individuals.

The ‘Ukraine Freedom Support Act’ does not make sanctions fully obligatory and allows Obama to have power over which parts of the bill to enforce.

However, “it does send a confusing message to our allies because it includes some sanctions language that does not reflect the consultations that are ongoing,” Earnest said.

The new sanctions come amid concerns over the stability of the Russian ruble, which nosedived Tuesday following a decline in oil prices and previous rounds of sanctions imposed by both the US and the EU.

Obama’s Final Tab for the G-20 Summit Leaves Other World Leaders in the Dust

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BY MICHAEL HAUSAM | NATION, POLITICS, WORLD

Last month, the President spent one night in Brisbane, Australia, before speaking at the G20 Summit.

Now, thanks to a little digging by The Weekly Standard, we know that no expense was spared for him.

The bill for the one night’s stay exceeded $1.7 million at the Brisbane Marriott, whose tagline is “The Epitome of Five Star Elegance.”

Here are the details:

The presidential delegation required 4,096 rooms.
Three different hotels were used.
Logistics, security, and negotiating teams were there in advance of – and subsequent to – his visit.
The entire floor he stayed on was completely stripped down and examined prior to his arrival.
His suite was aptly named “The Presidential Suite” and cost just over $2,135 for the night.

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The U.K.’s Daily Mail provided some insight on how some other leaders were accommodated, and there’s a stark difference:

British PM Cameron’s room cost 1/2 that amount, Russia’s Putin spent 74% less, and Australian PM Abbott’s room cost 88% less.

Chinese President Jinping was the silver-medal winner and spent only $1,400 for his room.

And Japan’s Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, was forced to get by in a room that was only $171.60 per night.

When it comes to big-spending and making an impressive display of opulence, it seems our President is second to none.

Does America realize the consequences of forcing Russia into China’s arms?

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In Ukraine, the US is cutting off its nose to spite its face, as it transforms a regional struggle over “spheres of influence” into a global one. Unless the runaway train is swiftly derailed, the world faces a 21st century standoff between east and west.

In 867AD, Æbbe the Younger, Mother Superior of the convent at Coldingham in Scotland cut off her nose and upper lip and urged her fellow nuns to also disfigure themselves. It wasn’t for sacrificial reasons; it was because Viking raiders had landed nearby and the Abbess feared they would rape the community and deprive them of their chastity. By destroying their appearance, Mother Æbbe, correctly, guessed the Nordic marauders would show no interest. She was right – the Vikings were so disgusted that they burned the entire convent to the ground.

From this event was born the phrase “cutting off the nose to spite the face.” Although the original circumstances were slightly different, the term is a warning against pursuing revenge in a way that would damage the instigator more than the object of the anger. The USA is doing precisely this in its current attitude to Russia. By “punishing” Russia for resisting Western attempts to “grab” Ukraine, it is laying the foundations for a far more serious estrangement.

A feud that began when President Putin stymied the hopes of elements in Washington to wage war with Syria now has the potential to reshape the entire world. You all know the story by now, neocon factions in the State Department took revenge against Putin’s perceived stubbornness by ratcheting up tensions in Ukraine, leading to a violent revolution and civil war. The Crimean people voted to rejoin Russia and Washington, in tandem with the EU, imposed sanctions on Moscow.

Except they weren’t the kind of sanctions designed to damage Russia’s ability to defend itself. Instead, they were clearly aimed at regime change by targeting close supporters of the Russian President. Subsequently, the short-sighted sanctions led to unprecedented approval ratings for Putin as the Russian people rallied around their leader. In their eyes, an attack on their President was an attack on the nation. What the State Department meddlers didn’t countenance is that Russians, with high levels of education, are too savvy to be hoodwinked by playground tactics.

Since then, bilateral relations between the White House and the Kremlin have reached their lowest point since the Russian Federation was founded in 1991. This has happened only 4 years after Putin advocated a free trade agreement between the EU and Russia. “A harmonious economic community stretching from Lisbon to Vladivostok,” as he wrote in Germany’s Süddeutsche Zeitung at the time.

In 48 months we have gone from a prospective giant Western alliance, with Russia at its centre, to a situation where Russia is now ready to possibly join an Eastern alliance led, to all intents and purposes, by China. We know neocons aren’t the brightest lights in the firmament but are they really this stupid?

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If you didn’t know the personalities involved and were asked to suggest the obvious alignment of the world, you’d probably say that Russia’s place was in the European camp. It shares a Christian faith with the rest of the continent and has always been at least a “slightly” European power – much like the United Kingdom.

In truth, Russia has little in common with Asian cultures, aside from geography. Even in the far eastern outpost of Vladivostok (which is on the far side of China), an Italian is far more likely to blend in than a Malaysian. This is not related to appearance – there are many ethnic east-Asians in the region, who regard themselves as thoroughly Russian and, by virtue, European. Indeed there are millions of people east of the Urals who have actually never set foot in what is generally considered to be Europe, but describe themselves as being Europeans. It’s a state of mind but, then again, Europe has always been as much an idea as a place.

For years commentators have speculated: “imagine Russia’s resources and military power with Western Europe’s technology and fiscal heft?” It would, of course, be the single most powerful economic and martial bloc in the world. Not only that, but such a rapprochement makes complete sense and has done since 1991.

However, it is Washington’s worst nightmare. An EU-Russia alliance and partial union would erode America’s influence in Europe. Hence, to knock it on head, just as it seemed Germany was warming to the notion, the US has managed to drive a massive wedge between Moscow and its natural allies in Europe.

Before they clap themselves on the back too loudly, the Americans might want to pause for a second. In pursuing this haphazard course, they’ve managed to send Russia hurtling into China’s warm embrace.

Thus, cutting off their nose to spite their face. Instead of allowing a tri-polar world, the US in control of the Americas, China in Asia, and a giant Eurasian alliance as a buffer – Washington has managed to create a much more confrontational bi-polar world. In the blue corner, the USA and a castrated, divided Europe which is being pulled in all kinds of directions and in the red corner, a resurgent China and a Russia that, most likely, would prefer to be in a different corner altogether, or none,

This is the way the US State Department wishes the world to be – in a constant state of chaos. Now, instead of a US-EU-Russia detente, they have managed to manufacture a new Cold War for the 21st century with Ukraine as the new Berlin.

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With Russia alienated by the West and China eager to buy high-end weaponry, a joint military pact seems the likely outcome. Concurrently, the previously zombie-like NATO has awoken like a pensioner who was discovered house music and fancies a last youthful dance.

If a Moscow-Beijing military alliance does take shape, such a bloc would dominate the Eurasian landmass, with naval bases all the way from the Baltic, via the Arctic and Pacific, to the South China Sea. A union between Russia’s advanced weaponry and China’s huge population and industrial muscle would eventually prove a match for NATO, thereby giving the US an excuse to ratchet up military spending. If Europe attempted to follow suit, it would likely deepen its economic malaise. The main point is that the whole notion is such an incredibly wasteful use of finite global resources.

The confrontation between Russia and the West is a gift that keeps on giving for China. Just as the self-destruction of the Euro-centric world a century ago allowed the building a new US-centric system, the weakening of the US will probably result in China becoming the world’s leading power. Europe’s last chance to stake its own claim, has evaporated into thin air thanks to a bone-headed, subservient (to Washington) strategy in eastern part of the continent. Europe’s inability to separate the European Union from the archaic NATO has been its undoing.

Four years after Putin proposed a Russian-EU alliance from “Lisbon to Vladivostok,” we instead have an embryonic new Cold War. It’s not too late to halt the wagons but time is limited. The next US administration, if it’s sufficiently blessed to be shorn of neocons, must decide which is more important to it: to antagonize Russia in the eastern borderlands, losing its world hegemony in the process, or to find a way of resolving friction with Moscow, thus halting the process of China’s accession to the role of global superpower.

Russian battleships in the English Channel, say they’re training

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Russia’s Northern Fleet has been conducting naval training near Dover. Two battleships and two supply vessels worked on operations and communications in conditions of adverse weather and heavy marine traffic.

“Today a squadron of warships and support vessels of the Northern Fleet headed by a large anti-submarine ship, the Severomorsk, crossed the narrowest part of the English Channel and passed into the Bay of the Seine,” said Russia’s defense ministry.

The crews held a series of survival exercises in case of flooding or fire, as well as anti-submarine training.

After the training, in one of the world’s most crowded waterways, where the squadron was constantly shadowed by the British Navy’s HMS Tyne offshore patrol vessel, the task force went further and anchored in the international waters of the Seine Bay to wait out a storm.

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Both Britain’s and France’s navies confirmed the location of the Russian ships, but denied that the Russians were doing any training.

“They are not holding exercises. They’re just waiting in a zone where they are allowed to be several times a year,” the French Navy’s information service said as cited by Reuters.

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“Our information indicates that the ships are transiting and have been delayed by weather conditions. They are not exercising in the Channel, as some Russian headlines would have us believe,” said NATO’s military spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Jay Janzen.

Russia’s Navy reported that the crews are not going to sit out the storm in an idle manner. Instead, the crews will train in repelling underwater warfare attacks and practice radio-electronic warfare.

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The captains of the task force use every opportunity to test their crews should a situation arise.

While sailing in high latitudes, Russian sailors trained by providing assistance to a vessel in distress. They also did electronic communication training and cargo transfers from ship to ship.

When NATO patrol aircrafts approached the task force in North Sea waters, air raid alerts were sounded and crews trained air defense maneuvers.

Combat duty assignments of the large anti-submarine ship, the Severomorsk, specifically practiced the detection and elimination of waterborne targets.

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The task group left its homeport of Severomorsk above the Arctic Circle on November 20 and has already covered 1,700 nautical miles, crossing successively the Barents Sea, the Norwegian Sea and the North Sea before entering the Strait of Dover.

Northern Fleet warships will steam for the Gulf of Aden to protect vessels there from Somalia pirate attacks.

RUSSIA IS READY FOR SHOOTING WAR, WILL LIKELY WIN LOOMING NUCLEAR SHOWDOWN WITH U.S.

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America’s most pressing concern is complacency

By Erik Pineda | November 25, 2014 7:13 PM EST

Preparedness for a nuclear conflict could prove as the foremost tactical advantage of Russia over the United States, likely positioning Moscow to score a win in case a shooting World War III with Washington as nemesis erupts.

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin addresses the audience as he takes part in festivities to mark the 75th anniversary of the victory in the Battle of Khalkhin Gol in Ulan Bator, September 3, 2014.

Noting the recent reports that Russia has gained the upper hand in nuclear weapons capability against the United States, Forbes contributor James Conca argued in his article that America’s most pressing concern is complacency.

Nuclear war is non-existent

In his report, Conca outlined the deteriorating state of America’s nuclear weapons that in October 2013 was highlighted by the departure of a U.S. general who was supposed to steer into top shape the country’s Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) command.

However, high-profile reports about lapses on ICBM handling in the past few years led to the firing last year of the same top-level official.

This was happening as Russia was hard at work to match or even exceed not only the U.S. nuclear arsenal but also its technology. And as admitted by the U.S. State Department, America is now the underdog should hostilities involving nuclear weapons between the two nations actually break out, dreadfully sparking World War III.

This is the present case, Conca wrote, because the U.S., the public and officials alike, are convinced that nuclear war is far too remote to happen and threat is simply non-existent.

“Not so in Russia. They’re ready,” the Forbes report declared. It appeared too that in the past 40 years, Moscow not only did not let its guards down but also double up its efforts of building up. This explains the new generation of long-range cruise missiles that are ready for mobile deployment by land or sea.

Pentagon is reduced to playing catch up

Fortunately, the U.S. government is admitting that the present situation is unacceptable with Defence chief Chuck Hagel conceding that “routine neglect of our nuclear weapons programs over the years has compromised our ability to respond to an actual threat.”

To correct the situation, Hagel recently announced that up to $8 billion will be added to the maintenance of America’s nuclear arsenal that should set off the country’s accelerated efforts to regain the nuclear leadership against Russia.

(Hagel will not be around to oversee the catch up attempt as he resigned November 24, which BBC said was confirmed by U.S. President Barack Obama.

No more cooperation

Meanwhile, Russia continues to put up a proud face and its aggressive ways as it flagged earlier this November plans to wind down nuclear security cooperation with the United States.

The move, according to The New York Times, is seen as Russia’s way of saying that it requires no outside assistance in securing the country’s nuclear assets and network.

Or as observers would say, it could be Moscow’s strong message to the West and the United States in particular that it cannot be pressured about Ukrainian borders, where Russian troops are said to be amassing by the thousands.