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Uglytruth

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Money Pit: Zelensky govt signals intent to default on tens of billions in foreign debts

written by jordan schachtel
thursday july 21, 2022
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Western governments have allocated well over $100 billion to prop up Ukraine in its war against Russia, with countless billions more flooding into the country at an increasing pace. Yet as each day passes, it’s becoming more and more clear that all of the money awarded and assigned to Ukraine continues to dissolve into a black hole of secrecy, corruption, deceit, and now, default.

On Wednesday, Ukraine finance ministry asked foreign creditors to accept a delay in its debt repayments, requesting a two year freeze on billions of dollars in Eurobonds. Per the Financial Times, “a rescheduling would amount to a Ukrainian default” on Kiev’s tens of billions in foreign debt.
Although western financial support has increased since May, Kyiv is still counting on Ukraine's central bank to buy its debt by selling foreign reserves or printing money, at the risk of setting off an inflationary spiral https://t.co/1RjuDJun7X
— Financial Times (@FinancialTimes) July 19, 2022
The news comes just one day after the EU ambassador to Kiev insisted that Ukraine would not default on its foreign debt.

The junk-rated sovereign has a balance of about $25 billion of foreign debt, Bloomberg reports.

Despite all of the money coming in from around the world, Ukraine’s budget deficit has spiraled out of control. Zelensky’s office now claims to have a $9 billion monthly budget deficit, up 80% from just last month.

“Ukraine’s dollar bonds due in 2033 are trading around 18 cents on the dollar, down from about 25 cents at the end of last month and more than 80 cents before Russia’s invasion in February,” the Bloomberg report adds, highlighting the continuing decline of creditor confidence.

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Ukraine estimates a 35 to 45 percent crash in its GDP this year. The government in Kiev is hoping to finalize the debt deferral by August 9, Reuters reports.

As we’ve covered in depth at The Dossier, Ukraine is losing both the economic war and the war on the physical battlefield, but the Zelensky government continues to dismiss the prospect of an armistice or peace deal with Moscow.

In addition to the government as a whole, Ukraine’s state-owned infrastructure and national energy companies have also announced their intent to default on international bonds. Earlier this week, Kiev announced that it has sold some $12+ billion in gold reserves since the start of the war.

The Western government creditors of Ukraine released a joint statement in support of Ukraine’s debt freeze, adding that they “will continue to closely coordinate and assess the situation with the support of the IMF and the World Bank.”

Translation: Western governments will continue to print huge amounts of cash and launch it in the direction of the Ukraine operation.

While this default will not stop the West’s perpetual Ukrainian money train operation, it sends a very loud $25+ billion signal to greater credit markets. What if other countries follow suit, citing other "national emergencies" and the like? Is the “Climate Emergency” now grounds for default?
 

Uglytruth

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Russia-Ukraine updates: Kyiv and Moscow expected to sign grain deal​

Turkey's presidency has said a deal for the export of Ukrainian grain will be signed between Kyiv and Moscow on Friday. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is heading to Istanbul. DW has the latest.



Grain pictured in a field in the Odesa region in southern Ukraine
Russia and Ukraine are both major global wheat suppliers
Ukraine and Russia will sign a UN deal on Friday to unblock exports of Ukraine grain, according to Turkey's presidency.
"The signing ceremony of the grain shipment agreement, in which President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres will be present, will be held [Friday] with the participation of Ukraine and Russia," Turkish officials said.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was traveling to Turkey on Thursday in a bid to get Russia and Ukraine agree on an elusive agreement to allow grain exports out of Ukraine's Black Sea.
Over 20 million tons of Ukrainian grain have been blocked by Russian forces, as well as land mines that Ukraine has laid to avert a feared assault.
The blockade has triggered a global crisis, sending food prices soaring and pushing millions of people in low-income countries toward starvation.
A first round of talks last week had no breakthroughs, although Guterres said he was hoping the warring sides could reach a final agreement this week.
Here are the other main headlines from the war in Ukraine on July 21.

CIA estimates 15,000 Russian troops killed​

The head of the CIA estimates that about 15,000 Russian troops have already been lost in Moscow's war against Ukraine.
The estimate was delivered by the US intelligence agency's director, William Burns, during a security conference in Aspen, Colorado. Burns added that around 45,000 are thought to have been wounded.
"The Ukrainians have suffered as well, probably a little less than that," Burns said
Russia has not disclosed any current figures on casualties. The Ukrainian side has also not given official figures on how many of its troops have been killed. However, during the height of Russia's Donbas offensive in June, Ukrainian officials said that their forces were losing up to 200 troops every day.
Burns also said the massing of Russian forces in the Donbas region suggests that, at least for the moment, the Russian military has learnt from the failures at the beginning of the war, which has now been going on for almost five months.

Hungarian FM in Moscow to discuss buying more gas​

Hungary is looking to secure more gas supplies from Russia the country's ruling Fidesz party said in a statement.
Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto traveled to Moscow on Thursday to discuss the purchase of more gas.
"In order to ensure the security of Hungary’s energy supply, the government has decided to purchase an additional 700 million cubic metres of natural gas in addition to the quantities stipulated in the long-term contracts," Fidesz said in a statement posted on Facebook.
According to data from Hungary’s natural gas operator FGSZ, the amount sought represents around 6.7% of the country’s 2020 gas consumption.
Reuters news agency reported that Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Moscow would consider the request.
Hungary has opposed EU plans to reduce dependency on Russian energy supplies.

Weapons being smuggled into the EU from Ukraine — report​

Europol has warned of arms smuggling for Ukraine into the European Union, according to German media.
Regional broadcaster Südwestrundfunk (SWR), reported that the EU police authority notified the Council of the European Union that it was aware of multiple cases involving illegal firearms exports.
In a letter reportedly seen by SWR, Europol also mentioned that criminal syndicates were smuggling the weapons and that arms caches may have been placed along the Ukrainian border area with the EU.
Europol is also reported to have said that some refugees from Ukraine may have brought firearms with them into the EU.

Germany announces measures to ensure energy security​

Germany's Economy Minister Robert Habeck announced plans to ensure the country’s energy security in the face of reduced gas deliveries from Russia.
According to the measures there will be more stringent requirements for filling gas storage facilities.
As of November facilities would need to be kept at 95% instead of 90% and in October 85% instead of 80%.
Lignite reserve plants would also be reactivated in October to help save on gas.
There would also be energy saving measures put in place in public buildings.
The use of home-office should also be extended in consensus with employers and employees.
"The situation remains tense, so we are once again stepping up our efforts. Gas consumption must continue to come down, storage facilities must become full,” Habeck said. "We need staying power."

Kharkiv mayor reports 2 dead in Russian shelling​

The mayor of Ukraine's second largest city, Kharkiv, said Russian shelling hit a densely populated area, killing two and injuring 19. Writing on the social media service Telegram, Mayor Igor Terekhov advised citizens not to leave shelters and said "four people are in serious condition."










0 seconds of 0 secondsVolume 90%





Watch video05:27

A Ukrainian family's new start in Germany​

Russian troops close in on major Ukrainian power plant — UK​

In its daily briefing, UK military intelligence said that Russian forces are likely closing in on Ukraine's second-largest power plant, located in the town of Vuhlehirska.
The move is part of a plan to take over critical infrastructure and the key Donetsk cities of Kramatorsk and Sloviansk, British military intelligence assessed.

Russian gas flows again through Nord Stream 1​

The Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline reopened as scheduled early Thursday morning, after being closed for annual maintenance work for 10 days, according to the pipeline operator.
The president of Germany's Federal Network Agency, Klaus Müller, said on Twitter that the pipeline was running at about 30% of capacity and that this amount was guaranteed for two hours. Müller said, however, that it was unusual for the rate of delivery to change within a day.
Germany has accused the Kremlin of using energy as a "weapon."

Britain's Truss rules out UK troop involvement in Ukraine​

During an interview on BBC Radio, British foreign secretary and prime ministerial candidate Liz Truss said on Thursday she did not support the direct involvement of British troops in Ukraine.
"We are doing all we can to support Ukraine. We've led the international coalition on sending weapons, we're putting the sanctions in place, but I do not support the direct involvement of UK troops," she said.
At the same time, the UK continues to deliver more weapons to Kyiv. UK Defense Secretary announced Thursday that London will send more than 1,600 anti-tank weapons to Ukraine, as Russia's invasion presses on.

Ukraine devalues its currency​

Ukraine's central bank has devalued the country's hryvnia currency in order to boost the economy and make Ukrainian exports more competitive.
The exchange rate will go from 29.25 hyrvnia to the US dollar to 36.57 hryvnia to the dollar.
"The new hryvnia rate will become an anchor for the economy and will add its resilience in conditions of uncertainty," the National Bank of Ukraine said in a statement.
The bank said it took action "in view of the change in the fundamental characteristics of Ukraine's economy during the war and the strengthening of the US dollar and other currencies."
Once the fighting has ended, the central bank will roll back its emergency measures to support the economy, according to National Bank chief Kyrylo Shevchenko.

Turkey says talks on grain corridor going well​

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said talks between Russia, Ukraine and the UN on resuming Ukrainian grain exports through the Black Sea are going well so far.
He told Turkish media he hoped to be able to announce "good news" on the talks in coming days, but added there were still minor issues being discussed between the parties. Ankara is hosting talks between Moscow, Kyiv, and the UN, for a UN-led plan about a grain corridor.

Engineering company ABB to quit Russia​

Swiss-Swedish engineering giant ABB announced plans to quit business in Russia, due to the war and sanctions against Moscow.
Russia accounts for only up to 2% of ABB's overall annual turnover and the decision to pull out will have an estimated financial impact in the second quarter of around $57 million, the group calculated.

Catch up on DW's Ukraine content​

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock on Wednesday rejected Russia's claim that Western weapons deliveries played a part in Moscow’s decision to expand its military objectives in Ukraine.
Many European countries have already been preparing for the possibility of a cut in gas supplies since Russia sharply reduced gas flows in mid-June, and with zero gas flow during a period of annual pipeline maintenance that started on July 11.
 

dacrunch

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The Western "leaders" sure shot a bullet into the foot of their own populations...
 

arminius

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The Western "leaders" sure shot a bullet into the foot of their own populations...
What's worse than that is that they are our employees, pretending to be our leaders.

They are PUBLIC SERVANTS. That means they serve us, the people. We don't serve them...

They are our political representatives who should do what we the people need, not what the rich reptiles want. They need to be reminded of that little factoid.
 

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Casey Jones

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Of course they never intended to pay back that money. It was being stolen from the get go, just like all the dough we are sending to ukraine. I'll bet the big guy is getting his 10% for his treason.
I don't think so. He's no longer sentient.

He's a meat puppet. I wonder if he remembers what money is, or what a kickback is. Or his cut.
 

Goldbrix

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They are our political representatives who should do what we the people need, not what the rich reptiles want. They need to be reminded of that little factoid.
Politicians do the work their parties want done, not what they talked leading to the election.
All the two parties want is the smoke and mirrors of a legitimate election. Then The Electoral College approval to get sworn in.
What follows for the next 2- 4 yrs is nothing compared to the propaganda they ran on.
TRUMP came closest even with RINO Ryan slow-walking the Trump Agenda and Mitch the Corporate Bitch doing the same it the senate.
Now I find out Obama "burrowed" leftist moles with the bureaucratic ranks as Civil Service Employees that could not be fired when they had originally been brought in as political appointees . 79 of which were in policy creation and writing depts.
TRUMP could not ask for their resignations as he could Obama's P. A.s.
So these moles were another trip wire for Trump and his administration.
Now we know where all those leaks came from when Trump was in office.
Yet the Bidet Admin. is sealed up tighter than a drum.
 

lukdiver

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It's hard to believe the elites think they can 'colonize' Russia but here goes:


Mariapol today and supposedly apartments 'free'?:

 

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Sounds like the WEF 'Young Global Leaders' in Australia are doing a good job of wrecking their economy:

 

wastrel

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It's hard to believe the elites think they can 'colonize' Russia but here goes:

Is there a "Free Nations of America" forum? Just curious.
 

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Sounds like the WEF 'Young Global Leaders' in Australia are doing a good job of wrecking their economy:

It reads like the Aussies have a better case of Treason than we have on Bidet and the Leftists.
 

Goldbrix

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They want to plant their Whirled Fascistic Forum vermin in Russia's governmental structure.

That's what this is about.
I hope Putin ferrets them all out , gives them a public hearing, and promptly executes those WEF puppets.
:hunt: :inspector::judge:jail::hang:
 

Casey Jones

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I hope Putin ferrets them all out , gives them a public hearing, and promptly executes those WEF puppets.
:hunt: :inspector::judge:jail::hang:
I'd absolutely LUUUV to see Putin nuke...DAVOS.

Trouble is...if he's driven that far, he probably won't stop. Ever see someone long-suffering, trying restraint, being finally pushed beyond his limits? He doesn't stop with one punch. No, he goes postal.

So if Putin has finally had enough, he won't stop with just one. I think he was being totally candid in saying he'd be involving "Decision Centers" in any nuclear exchange.
 

Goldbrix

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lukdiver

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This is comment off chat on 'moonofalabama'. Haven't heard this else where?

This article is predicting significant escalation by RF in near future.

My Fellow Americans, You Own This and You Will Pay for It
The Russians are readying a major offensive

By Jack Heart -July 22


"“The 2 Brits and the Arab muppet were executed by firing squad early morning Friday ZULU time, Jack. In the Donbas. You’ll hear about this soon, I’d expect. But everything is being distorted coming from Novorossiya. Huge losses of life. Carnage. Biblical scale and Russia is done killing fellow Slavs, we’ve gathered. They’re going to end it. Soon.

Now we’re starting to see some new developments and they’ll be coming fast. They also have two US generals and some Canadian ****** sequestered in Moscow. They’ll be getting the same treatment after a very public show trial. I’m excited, I know you are, too. And word is in that Russia will be launching a major– repeat, major– offensive aimed at finishing Ukrainian fantasy world for keeps. Within the month, certainly. Watch out for that. They’ll be going to the Polish border, for sure. And will then be focusing on the source of the rot very shortly thereafter instead of wasting time-fighting with inconsequential muppets.”

The consensus is the worst places in the world to be right now are Ukraine, Lithuania, and Poland, in that order. My friend in Poland does not want to be there but these guys got jobs to do, and unlike the cowardly Americans who they may be throwing their lives away to serve, they will do their job even if it means death. Putin and the Russians are coming, you can take that to the bank and my guess is they will be coming through Lithuania, then Poland."

Posted by: Scorpion | J
 
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WillA2

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Goldbrix

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This is comment off chat on 'moonofalabama'. Haven't heard this else where?

This article is predicting significant escalation by RF in near future.

My Fellow Americans, You Own This and You Will Pay for It
The Russians are readying a major offensive

By Jack Heart -July 22


"“The 2 Brits and the Arab muppet were executed by firing squad early morning Friday ZULU time, Jack. In the Donbas. You’ll hear about this soon, I’d expect. But everything is being distorted coming from Novorossiya. Huge losses of life. Carnage. Biblical scale and Russia is done killing fellow Slavs, we’ve gathered. They’re going to end it. Soon.

Now we’re starting to see some new developments and they’ll be coming fast. They also have two US generals and some Canadian ****** sequestered in Moscow. They’ll be getting the same treatment after a very public show trial. I’m excited, I know you are, too. And word is in that Russia will be launching a major– repeat, major– offensive aimed at finishing Ukrainian fantasy world for keeps. Within the month, certainly. Watch out for that. They’ll be going to the Polish border, for sure. And will then be focusing on the source of the rot very shortly thereafter instead of wasting time-fighting with inconsequential muppets.”

The consensus is the worst places in the world to be right now are Ukraine, Lithuania, and Poland, in that order. My friend in Poland does not want to be there but these guys got jobs to do, and unlike the cowardly Americans who they may be throwing their lives away to serve, they will do their job even if it means death. Putin and the Russians are coming, you can take that to the bank and my guess is they will be coming through Lithuania, then Poland."

Posted by: Scorpion | J l
While I like the intel VT obtains I don't always agree with their "Scorpion"'s conclusions.
While we all know Putin is no angel. His speeches have been far more accurate than the stories NATO, WEF and BIDET put out. Much of which can be supported by The Pentagon's reports of actions in Ukraine. Meaning The Pentagon and NATO reports conflict most of the time.
 

SongSungAU

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Needless Death and Misery​

The war in Ukraine is in its sixth month, and there’s no end in sight. Here’s what we know…

Almost everything you heard about the war in Ukraine from U.S. media over the course of March, April and May was a lie.

You heard that Putin was losing the war. You heard that Russians had poor training and low morale and were deserting in droves. You heard that Ukrainians were destroying Russian armor in large numbers to blunt the Russian advance.

None of this was true. In fact, Russian troops have achieved major victories in Mariupol, Kherson, Severodonetsk, Lysychansk and other key targets that control rivers, ports and junctions in Ukraine.

U.S. Willing to Fight Russia to the Last Ukrainian

This article isn’t about strategy and I don’t want to get too deeply into the weeds, but Russia’s next targets are Slovyansk and Bakhmut, which will consolidate Russia’s control over the Luhansk and Donetsk regions.

Russia has also deployed anti-drone laser systems that have neutralized Ukraine’s ability to target Russian positions with drones. The endgame is the takeover of Odessa, which would give Russia control of 100% of Ukraine’s coastlines along the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea.

A negotiated settlement that cedes Russian control over Crimea and the Russian-speaking parts of eastern Ukraine is probably the most realistic solution available to end the war. But the U.S. doesn’t want the war to end. Its plan is to wear Russia down through a protracted conflict, no matter how much the Ukrainian people suffer.

The battlefield situation aside, the story is even worse from the U.S. perspective…

Blowback!

Russia is not just winning the war on the ground. It’s winning the global financial and economic war launched by Biden and our European allies.

Russia’s revenues from oil and natural gas exports are at all-time highs. The Russian ruble is much stronger today than it was when the war began. China and India are buying all the Russian oil that Europe is refusing to buy.

Meanwhile, the economies of the U.S. and the EU are in or very near to recession. Inflation is out of control in the West. Commodity shortages will lead quickly to food shortages and more empty shelves in supermarkets.

Across the board, Biden’s economic sanctions have backfired and are hurting the U.S. and Europe far more than they are hurting Russia.

Not Pro-Russian, But Pro-Truth

I’ve been reporting honestly on the war since the beginning. My readers have not been misled by false reporting because I’ve been candid about the real impact of sanctions and Russia’s brutal but effective battlefield tactics.

It’s not that I’m pro-Russian — I’m not. I’m pro-truth. And I don’t defend the Russian invasion in any way (although I do understand it).

Even Bloomberg and The New York Times are now starting to admit that the war is a lost cause for Ukraine and the U.S. economy is suffering from sanctions aimed at Russia. But it’s a little late for legacy media to get their story straight.

What we know right now is the economic damage to the U.S. economy will get much worse before the economy gets better. Biden won’t stop the sanctions soon. That means the trashing of the U.S. economy will continue.

Meanwhile, Russia is “temporarily” shutting down the Nord Stream natural gas pipeline to Germany for repairs. Of course, the temporary shutdown may become permanent. It’s just more proof that U.S.-led sanctions only hurt the U.S. and Europe, not Russia.

Failed Sanctions Against Russia May Actually Lead to Other Wars

Here’s another potentially dangerous side effect of the failed sanctions campaign against Russia:

Economic sanctions may now facilitate war instead of preventing or stopping it. Why? Because U.S. sanctions on Russia are a complete failure. Nations considering invasions that might have been deterred because of sanctions threats may now feel emboldened and that they can proceed with confidence.

How this new dynamic plays out in hotspots like the Taiwan Strait remains to be seen. But it would be deeply ironic if sanctions actually encouraged China to move against Taiwan.

These are the sorts of issues that should be thoroughly thought through before action is taken. But our political leaders are incapable of thinking even one move ahead.

The U.S. has already committed about $56 billion to assist Ukraine, which will likely turn out to be a very poor investment. But American taxpayers might be fleeced even more…

Give Us More Money!

The prime minister of Ukraine has calmly asked an international conference for $750 billion of assistance to rebuild Ukraine after the war. Nice try. There are a few problems with this. First of all, there will be no Ukraine to rebuild, at least not in its current form.

Russia will take somewhere between a third and half the country and keep it. The parts that Russia is taking control of include the industrial nexus, the largest natural resource deposits and the most fertile land. Russia will be able to finance the reconstruction of their conquests using the very industrial capacity, mining and agricultural output they have captured.

Russia will also control the ports and major rivers and will be able to tax the remainder of Ukraine for access. The gradual result will be a prosperous part of Ukraine controlled by Russia and a desperately poor part of Ukraine left to the corrupt oligarchs under Zelenskyy.

You’re on the Hook to Rebuild Ukraine

When asked how Ukraine will finance the $750 billion demanded, the prime minister said they could use assets seized from Russian oligarchs. But that’s ridiculous. There may be $5 billion or $10 billion in yachts and townhouses, but nothing close to $750 billion.

The truth is that this money will be expected to come from the U.S. and the EU, either directly or indirectly through the World Bank and the IMF. In other words, you are going to pay for it one way or the other. Of course, most of the money would end up in the hands of corrupt Ukrainian oligarchs.

It’s unlikely much reconstruction will get done anyway because Ukraine has long been a money-laundering operation for the benefit of U.S. politicians including the Clintons, Bidens and Obamas.

That’s something to bear in mind when your taxes start going up to “help” Ukraine.

Regards,

Jim Rickards
for The Daily Reckoning

source:
.
 

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This Tragedy Was Entirely Avoidable​

The war in Ukraine will have huge ramifications for the international system in the coming years. Many will prove negative for the U.S. as sanctions backfire and the world moves more rapidly toward dollar alternatives.

Unfortunately, the war in Ukraine was totally avoidable. Had the U.S. pursued closer ties with Russia years ago, rather than antagonizing it and driving it into a deeper alliance with China, it’s highly unlikely the war would have taken place.

But largely because of elites in the U.S. and Europe, hopes of a partnership with Russia were dashed.

I’ve made the argument before, but sometimes we all need to be reminded of basic facts. We need to remember how we got here.

Three-Handed Poker

There’s an old saying in poker: If you’re in a three-way poker game and you don’t know who the sucker is, you’re the sucker.

The idea is that in a three-handed game, two players will disadvantage the sucker by coordinating their betting and not raising each other. Eventually, the sucker is cleaned out and the two survivors can then turn on each other.

The world is in a three-handed poker game today.

Russia, China and the U.S. are the only true superpowers and the only three countries that ultimately matter in geopolitics. That’s not a slight against any other power.

But all others are secondary powers (the U.K., France, Germany, Japan, Israel, etc.) or tertiary powers (Iran, Turkey, India, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, etc.).

The U.S. Is the Sucker

This means that the ideal posture for the U.S. is to ally with Russia (to marginalize China) or ally with China (to marginalize Russia), depending on overall geopolitical conditions.

The U.S. conducted this kind of triangulation successfully from the 1970s until the early 2000s.

One of the keys to U.S. foreign policy in the last 50 or 60 years has been to make sure that Russia and China never formed an alliance. Keeping them separated was key.

In 1972, Nixon pivoted to China to put pressure on Russia. In 1991, the U.S. pivoted to Russia to put pressure on China after the Tiananmen Square massacre.

Unfortunately, the U.S. has lost sight of this basic rule of international relations. It is now Russia and China that have formed a strong alliance, to the disadvantage of the United States.

The war in Ukraine has only deepened their relationship.

Ultimately, this two-against-one strategic alignment of China and Russia against the U.S. is a strategic blunder by the U.S.

The U.S. is the sucker in this three-way game of poker. The fact is Washington has squandered a major opportunity to turn it in America’s favor.

A Historic Blunder

When future historians look back on the 2010s they will be baffled by the lost opportunity for the U.S. to mend fences with Russia, develop economic relations and create a win-win relationship between the world’s greatest technology innovator and the world’s greatest natural resources provider.

China is the greatest geopolitical threat to the U.S. because of its economic and technological advances and its ambition to push the U.S. out of the Western Pacific sphere of influence.

Russia may be a threat to some of its neighbors (ask Ukraine), but it is far less of a threat to U.S. strategic interests. It’s not the Soviet Union anymore.

Therefore, a logical balance of power in the world would be for the U.S. and Russia to find common ground in the containment of China and to jointly pursue the reduction of Chinese power.

Of course, that didn’t happen. And we could be paying the price for years to come. Who’s to blame for this U.S. strategic failure? You can start with the globalist elites…

Poking the Russian Bear

The U.S. and its allies, especially the U.K. under globalists like David Cameron, wanted to peel off Ukraine from the Russian orbit and make it part of the EU and eventually NATO.

From Russia’s perspective, this was unacceptable. It may be true that most Americans cannot find Ukraine on a map, but a simple glance at a map reveals that much of Ukraine lies east of Moscow.

Putting Ukraine in a Western alliance such as NATO would create a crescent stretching from Luhansk in the east through Poland in the west and back around to Estonia in the north. There are almost no natural obstacles between that arc and Moscow; it’s mostly open steppe.

Completion of this “NATO Crescent” would leave Moscow open to invasion in ways that Napoleon and Hitler could only dream. Of course, this situation was and is unacceptable to Moscow.

Putin didn’t just wake up one day and decide it would be fun to invade Ukraine. It was years in the making.

The Orange Revolution

Prior to 2014, an uneasy truce existed between Washington and Moscow that allowed a pro-Russian president while at the same time permitting increasing contact with the EU.

Then the U.S. and the U.K. overreached by allowing the CIA and MI6 to foment a “color revolution” in Kyiv called the “Euromaidan Revolution.”

Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych resigned and fled to Moscow. Pro-EU protesters took over the government and signed an EU Association Agreement.

In response, Putin annexed Crimea and declared it part of Russia. He also infiltrated Donetsk and Luhansk in eastern Ukraine and helped establish de facto pro-Russian regional governments. The U.S. and the EU responded with harsh economic sanctions on Russia.

The U.S-induced fiasco in Ukraine not only upset U.S.-Russia relations; it derailed a cozy money-laundering operation involving Ukrainian oligarchs and Democratic politicians. The Obama administration flooded Ukraine with nonlethal financial assistance.

Some of this money was used for intended purposes, some was skimmed by the oligarchs and the rest was recycled to Democratic politicians in the form of consulting contracts, advisory fees, director’s fees, contributions to foundations and NGOs and other channels.

Hunter Biden and the Clinton Foundation were major recipients of this corrupt recycling. Other beneficiaries included George Soros-backed “open society” organizations, which further directed the money to progressive left-wing groups in the U.S.

Trump Derails the Gravy Train

This cozy wheel of fortune was threatened when Donald Trump became president. Trump genuinely desired improved relations with Russia and was not on the receiving end of laundered aid to Ukraine.

Trump was a threat to everything the globalists had constructed in the 2010s.

The globalists wanted China and the U.S. to team up against Russia. Trump understood correctly that China was the main enemy and therefore a closer union between the U.S. and Russia was essential.

The elites’ efforts to derail Trump gave rise to the “Russia collusion” hoax. While no one disputes that Russia sought to sow confusion in the U.S. election in 2016, that’s something the Russians and their Soviet predecessors had been doing since 1917. By itself, little harm was done.

Yet the elites seized on this to concoct a story of collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign. The real collusion was among Democrats, Ukrainians and Russians to discredit Trump.

It took the Robert Mueller investigation two years finally to conclude there was no collusion between Trump and the Russians. By then, the damage was done. It was politically toxic for Trump to reach out to the Russians. That would be spun by the media as more evidence of “collusion.”

Thanks, Globalists

Whatever you think of Trump personally, and he was far from perfect, the collusion story was always bogus.

So Russia became public enemy No.1 because of politics. Ironically, the same people who were soft on the Soviet Union during the Cold War are often the biggest Russia hawks these days.

And here we are today, fighting a proxy war against Russia in Ukraine. It could still result in direct war with Russia, with the specter of nuclear war looming in the background.

Again, it all could have been avoided. Nice job, globalists!

Regards,

Jim Rickards
for The Daily Reckoning

source:
.
 

Uglytruth

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Russia’s Gazprom to disable second pipeline turbine​

Natural gas supply via Nord Stream 1 will reportedly be reduced to 20% capacity
Russia’s Gazprom to disable second pipeline turbine

© John MACDOUGALL / AFP
Russian energy major Gazprom will stop the operation of second Siemens turbine, the company announced on Monday. As a result supply through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline will not exceed 33 million cubic meters per day from July 27, business daily Kommersant has reported, corresponding to 20% of the pipeline's capacity.
Gazprom says the decision to switch off the turbine was made based on its technical condition and the fact that it’s due for an overhaul.
A spokesperson for Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs has reportedly said that there are no technical reasons to reduce gas supply via the Nord Stream 1 pipeline.
According to an earlier report by Kommersant, several of the nine turbines at the Portovaya compressor station are in need of repair. The paper notes that Gazprom has not yet authorised further repairs, and that one turbine took about three months to overhaul. The current licensing agreement allows Siemens Energy to accept five more turbines for repair before the end of 2024.
This follows a dispute between Russia, Canada and Germany over a Siemens turbine that had been sent to Montreal for repairs and was not returned on time due to Ottawa’s sanctions against Moscow. Gazprom cited the delay as the reason for a 60% reduction in gas flow to Germany last month. Canada eventually sent the part to Germany, where it is currently awaiting shipment to Russia. Gazprom said earlier on Monday that the paperwork it had received from Canada and Siemens regarding the shipment of the turbine did not clear up sanctions-related questions.
Last week, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz suggested that Berlin could no longer rely on Moscow when it came to gas supplies and said he wasn’t convinced by Russia’s statements that the repaired Siemens turbine that had been delayed was necessary for the full functioning of the Nord Stream 1 pipeline. Moscow rejected the claim on Monday, with the Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov saying that a decrease in the volume of supplies was due to technical problems resulting from Western sanctions.
 

specsaregood

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There's a Russian propagandist list??
 

dacrunch

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Don't know if this was mentioned above, but I read an article about Russia hiring North Korean construction workers to rebuild Mariupol...
Talk about cheap labor...
 

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Don't know if this was mentioned above, but I read an article about Russia hiring North Korean construction workers to rebuild Mariupol...
Talk about cheap labor...
Maybe (my wife just mentioned it to me too) but I watched this video and seemed likely mostly Slavs??? Then again when I worked on the San Francisco waterfront (Fisherman's Wharf) the 80' ex-shrimp boats would occasionally unload swordfish (long-liners) and the crew was Vietnese and basically contracted out of their village for some paltry money ($500 month?). Tough way to make money fishing in the middle of the Pacific.

 
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Uglytruth

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Don't know if this was mentioned above, but I read an article about Russia hiring North Korean construction workers to rebuild Mariupol...
Talk about cheap labor...
I wonder how many will go back to NK after they see the world...?
 

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Uglytruth

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read the comments, totally infuriating. Newsweek's readers are as bad as their alleged "journalists."
They only allow comments when they write them to support the stupidity they are pushing.
 

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I wonder how many will go back to NK after they see the world...?
I seriously doubt the Nor Kor. work force is getting to see much but work for their God President's liking and his coffers.
 

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And yet Russia is losing THE War ?