USS Kearsage (LHD-3) Operations This Week Near Nordstream Site

Moon of Alabama: https://www.moonofalabama.org/2022/09/whodunnit-facts-related-to-the-sabotage-attack-on-the-nord-stream-pipelines.html#more

Whodunnit? – Facts Related to The Sabotage Attack On The Nord Stream Pipelines

For decades the U.S. opposed European projects to receive energy from Russia. It wants Europe to buy more expensive U.S. oil and gas.

the Lemniscat @theLemniscat – 15:56 UTC · Sep 27, 2022

US plan was always to stop EU buying Russia’s gas
2014
Rice:”You want to change the structure of energy dependence. You want to depend more on the North America energy platform … to have pipelines that don’t go through Ukraine & Russia”
https://youtube.com/watch?v=aF0uYIjaTNE

Europe’s, and especially Germany’s industry, depends on cheap energy from Russia. Without it Europe will be de-industrialized and go broke.

The U.S. had threatened to disable the pipelines connecting Europe to Russia.

ABC News @ABC – 9:59pm · 7 Feb 2022

Pres. Biden: “If Russia invades…then there will be no longer a Nord Stream 2. We will bring an end to it.”
Reporter: “But how will you do that, exactly, since…the project is in Germany’s control?”
Biden: “I promise you, we will be able to do that.”
abcn.ws/3B5SScx

Currently the U.S. is winning its war on Europe’s, mainly Germany’s, industries and people. Yesterday’s sabotage attack on the Nord Stream I and II pipelines, which are supposed to bring Russian natural gas to Germany, mean that the the war on Germany has entered its hot phase.

A question remains: Whodunnit?

Russia has no motive to destroy the pipelines it owns. These are valuable, long term assets and the gas that escaped from them yesterday was on its own worth some $600 to $800 million.

During the war in Ukraine Russia has not stopped to deliver gas to Europe as contractually agreed. Instead European countries, Poland, Ukraine and Germany have blocked overland and sub sea pipelines that brought gas to Germany.

German people have protested against the U.S. ordered shut down of the Nord Stream II pipeline. (Nord Stream I was recently offline because Siemens was prevented by sanctions from maintaining its compressor turbines.)

RadioGenova @RadioGenova – 18:02 UTC · Sep 26, 2022

Thousands of people in Gera in Germany against Olaf Scholz’s policy and the explosion of energy and gas prices. They demand an end to sanctions on Russia and the reopening of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. Demonstrations also in other German cities but EU media censors them.
Embedded video

A day after the protests the pipelines were sabotaged:

AZ @AZmilitary1 – 12:51 UTC · Sep 27, 2022

HERE IT IS
Footage from the site of a gas leak on the underwater section of the Nord Stream.
The video was published by the Danish military.
Earlier, the Kremlin said that it was most likely about sabotage.
The same opinion was expressed in the German government.
Embedded video

Yesterday’s attack on the Nord Stream system is not unprecedented:

professional hog groomer @bidetmarxman – 15:51 UTC · Sep 27, 2022

In 2015, the annual routine underwater survey of the Nord Stream 1 pipelines came across a remote operated vehicle rigged with explosives right next to one of the lines in Swedish waters.
The umbilical cable had been cut. The drone’s national origin was never disclosed. 🧵

In 2015 Pipeline Journal reported:

[T]he Swedish military has successfully cleared a remote operated vehicle (drone) rigged with explosives found near Line 2 of the Nord Stream Natural Gas offshore pipeline system.

The vehicle was discovered during a routine survey operation as part of the annual integrity assessment of the Nord Stream pipeline. Since it was within the Swedish Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) approximately 120 km away from the island of Gotland, the Swedes called on their armed forces to remove and ultimately disarm the object.

The national identity of the drone has not been verified so far, as many countries use Unmanned Underwater Vehicles (UUVs) of a similar construction, [Jesper Stolpe, Swedish Armed Forces spokesman,] said.

To destroy a sub sea pipeline requires more than a ROV/drone delivered shaped charge.

Javier Blas @JavierBlas – 15:18 UTC · Sep 27, 2022

How strong is a Nord Stream pipe? Quite!
The steel pipe itself has a wall of 4.1 centimeters (1.6 inches), and it’s coated with another 6-11 cm of steel-reinforced concrete. Each section of the pipe weighs 11 tonnes, which goes to 24-25 tonnes after the concrete is applied.

It wasn’t earthquakes that destroyed the pipelines. These were several well targeted and massive explosions:

A Swedish seismologist said on Tuesday he was certain the seismic activity detected at the site of the Nord Stream pipeline gas leaks in the Baltic Sea was caused by explosions and not earthquakes nor landslides.

Bjorn Lund, seismologist at the Swedish National Seismic Network at Uppsala University, said seismic data gathered by him and Nordic colleagues showed that the explosions took place in the water and not in the rock under the seabed.

The targeted explosions were not small:

Dagny Taggart @DagnyTaggart963 – 15:56 UTC · Sep 27, 2022

Swedish seismologists from Lund University noted that “at least 100 kg of TNT (perhaps more) were used to destroy the pipelines.”

Here is where the pipelines were hit:


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The Baltic Sea is controlled by NATO. This from June 2022:

“BALTOPS, with the high degree of complexity, tested our collective readiness and adaptability, while also highlighting the strength of our Alliance and resolve in providing a maritime domain with freedom of navigation for all,” said Vice Adm. Gene Black, commander, U.S. Sixth Fleet and Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO (STRIKFORNATO).

Led by U.S. Sixth Fleet, BALTOPS 22 was command and controlled by STRIKFORNATO. From the staff’s headquarters in Oeiras, Portugal, Rear Adm. James Morley, STRIKFORNATO deputy commander, was responsible for ensuring participants met all training objectives.

[Rear Adm. John Menoni, commander, Expeditionary Strike Group Two,] also noted several instances in which forces stepped beyond know warfare methods to push limits with new technologies at sea and ashore. “Whether it was mine-hunting UUVs, persistent Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance from an observable UAV, or demonstrating the value of the emerging Marine Corps concept of Expeditionary Advance Base Operations (EABO), our men and women continue to develop the tactics, techniques, and procedures that ultimately make meaningful contributions to Maritime Domain Awareness and increase the lethality of our forces.”

At sea, ships fine-tuned tactical maneuvering, anti-submarine warfare, live-fire training, mine countermeasures operations, and replenishments at sea. The Swedish submarine participating in the exercise, the U.K.’s Daring-class air-defense destroyer HMS Defender (D 36), and aircraft from other participating nations trained in anti-submarine warfare. Meanwhile, mine operations served as an ideal area of focus for testing new technology.

Scientists from five nations brought the latest advancements in Unmanned Underwater Vehicle (UUV) mine hunting technology to the Baltic Sea to demonstrate the vehicle’s effectiveness in operational scenariosThe BALTOPS Mine Counter Measure Task Group ventured throughout the Baltic region practicing ordnance location, exploitation, and disarming in critical maritime chokepoints.

While the Baltops 22 maneuver already took place in June and July of this year the U.S. Sixth Fleet left the Baltic Sea only a few days ago (in German, my translation):

Big Fleet Group From U.S. Navy Passes [German island passage] Fehmanbelt

On Wednesday morning the amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge, escorted by the Landing Ships USS Arlington and USS Gunston Hall, was en route towards west. Previously, the ships were part of US units that took part in NATO maneuvers and called at numerous ports in Germany, Scandinavia and the Baltic States.

The “USS Kearsarge”, flagship of the association and largest warship of the US Navy, which was in action in the Baltic Sea in the last 30 years, has 40 helicopters and fighter planes as well as more than 2000 soldiers on board, the escort ships about 1000. For the around 4,000 soldiers are heading back home on the east coast of the US after their six-month deployment.

Parts of the Kearsange operations in the Baltic Sea were dedicated to test special sub sea mine destruction technologies:

A significant focus of BALTOPS every year is the demonstration of NATO mine hunting capabilities, and this year the U.S. Navy continues to use the exercise as an opportunity to test emerging technology, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa Public Affairs said June 14.

In support of BALTOPS, U.S. Navy 6th Fleet partnered with U.S. Navy research and warfare centers to bring the latest advancements in unmanned underwater vehicle mine hunting technology to the Baltic Sea to demonstrate the vehicle’s effectiveness in operational scenarios.

Experimentation was conducted off the coast of Bornholm, Denmark, with participants from Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific, Naval Undersea Warfare Center Newport, and Mine Warfare Readiness and Effectiveness Measuring all under the direction of U.S. 6th Fleet Task Force 68.

Off the coast of Bornholm, Denmark, is where the pipelines were hit. Just days ago the USS Kearsarge was in that area:

AZ @AZmilitary1 – 13:52 UTC · Sep 27, 2022

An expeditionary detachment of US Navy ships led by the universal amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge days ago was in the Baltic Sea
It was 30 km from the site of the alleged sabotage on the Nord Stream-1 gas pipeline and 50 km from the threads of Nord Stream-2 gas pipeline


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AZ @AZmilitary1 – 14:12 UTC · Sep 27, 2022

On September 2, interesting maneuvers performed by an American helicopter with the call sign FFAB123. Then it was assumed that this board was from the USS Kearsarge air wing, and today more details were looked.

According to the website ads-b.nl , this call sign was used by 6 boards that day, of which we managed to establish the side numbers of three. All of them are Sikorsky MH-60S.

By superimposing the FFAB123 route on the scheme of yesterday’s accident, we get a rather interesting result — the helicopter either flew along the Nord Stream-2 highway, or even between the points where the accident occurred.

On Twitter, meanwhile, there were screenshots of other flights of American aviation — the following screenshot was taken on September 13.


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The MH-60S carries big electromagnetic sensors which allows it to detect submarines, mines and – in the shallow waters of the Baltic Sea –  sub sea pipelines.


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This overlay picture of two others posted above is especially of interest:


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The U.S. military is not the only force that was near the area of the pipeline damage. Just a 100 kilometer south is the Polish naval base Kolobrzeg (the former German Kolberg) which harbors mine laying ships and the 8th Kołobrzeg Naval Combat Engineer Battalion. Naval combat engineers are experts in blowing up anything that is under water, be it mines or pipelines.


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In 2021, while Nord Stream 2 was still being build, the Polish navy had interfered and endangered the pipe laying vessels in the very same place.

Artifaktus @bzyqer – 7:49 UTC · Sep 28, 2022

Gdy Wy mycie zęby, przebieracie się w piżamy i szykujecie do snu, jeden niestrudzony Polak wyrusza w swoją łodzią w kierunku Bornholmu mając na sercu dobro Polski a może i Niemiec …

Translated from Polish by Google
When you brush your teeth, put on your pajamas and get ready to go to sleep, one tireless Pole sets off in his boat towards Bornholm with the good of Poland and maybe Germany at heart …
Image

During the recent Ukraine crisis Poland has rejected to receive Russian gas. It closed the Yamal pipeline that transports natural gas from Russia to Germany. Poland continued to consume Russia gas. It received it from Germany which had received it through the Nord Stream I pipeline from Russia.

Poland and Denmark have build a new sub sea pipeline which connects it to the pipeline that brings Norwegian gas to the Netherlands and Europe.


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The pipeline was opened yesterday, the very same day the Nord Stream system was sabotaged.

Chancellery of the Prime Minister of Poland @PremierRP_en – 11:25 UTC · Sep 27, 2022

🇵🇱🤝🇩🇰 The #BalticPipe is a joint Polish-Danish investment in the energy security of the region.
Image

Chancellery of the Prime Minister of Poland @PremierRP_en – 13:43 UTC · Sep 27, 2022

🎥The launching ceremony of the #BalticPipe gas pipeline with participation of PM @MorawieckiM , PM of Denmark Mette Frederiksen & @prezydentpl @AndrzejDuda.
The Baltic Pipe is a strategic infrastructure project aimed at creating a new gas supply corridor on the European market.
Video

The Baltic Pipe has a capacity of only 10 billion cubic meters per year. The Nord Stream system could carry up to 110 cubic meter per year. All of which is needed to keep Europe’s industries running.

For more on Poland’s involvement, likely in cooperation with the U.S., read these informed speculations by John Helmer:

The explosions at Bornholm are the new Polish strike for war in Europe against Chancellor Olaf Scholz. So far the Chancellery in Berlin is silent, tellingly.

The Poles should be reminded that other countries also have the capabilities to sabotage sub sea pipelines.

Radosław Sikorski is a former Minister of Defense and Foreign Minister of Poland. He is now a Member of the European Parliament. Yesterday he posted a picture of the gas escaping the damaged Nord Stream pipelines and thanked the U.S. for blowing them up.


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Sikorski is married to the neoconservative writer Anne Appelbaum who is notorious for her anti-Russian and anti-German screeds widely published in U.S. media.

In 2014 during the Maidan coup in Ukraine another notorious neoconservative, Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, told the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, who should become the new prime minister of the Ukraine. She famously expressed her opinion about European concerns: “Fuck the EU” Nuland said. She is currently the U.S. Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs.

Over the last decades Germany has financed the Euro zone with up to 1.24 trillion Euros. (See also this thread). This was possible because Germany was exporting lots of industrial products and had a yearly surplus from its trade. With Germany’s industry going down because a lack of cheap energy that surplus will vanish. Europe, all of it, will become a poor continent.

Philip Pilkington @philippilk – 21:23 UTC · Sep 27, 2022

9/ The European energy war will likely go down in history, together with the Treaty of Versailles and the trade wars of the 1930s, as one of the biggest economic policy errors in history.

10/ Another thing: when Trump was elected on a platform of milder protectionism, many people rightly pointed to the 1920s and 1930s and warned against these policies. These same people appear to have supported these much more 1920s/30s-like policies this past year. Ironic.

This does not happen by chance or fate. It is part of a long term neoconservative plan for continued U.S. supremacy over the world. The Anglo-American axis is the only party to benefit from the recent events.

The U.S. allegedly warned Germany of sabotage of the Nord Stream system (in German).

This reminds of President Joe Biden’s warning of a Russian invasion in Ukraine early this year.

It is easy to predict such events when you are the one who intends to cause them.

The U.S. knew that the Ukraine was going to launch an attack on the Donbas republics. The U.S. knew that Russia would intervene to help its brethren. Russia had said so. The Ukrainian attack started with artillery preparations on February 17. Russia intervened on February 24.

The above is a collection of the currently available facts. You can draw your own conclusions from them.

US Declares War on Europe: Russian Gas Pipelines Destroyed

Remember: the US is the only country with the ability to dive to 4900 FT depth and conduct sabotage operations. This subsea technology employs the DSRV or the newer Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM) FALCON carrying SEAL/EOD teams riding to the site aboard a US fast attack nuclear submarine and diving down to the target.

But most of the Baltic is not that deep. The average depth in the vicinity of the breaks (western Baltic) is under 200 meters.

Well within the capabilities of any naval power – US, UK, Poland, and even Ukraine.

Sweden and Denmark both report powerful underwater explosions: https://www.svt.se/nyheter/inrikes/svt-avslojar-tva-explosioner-intill-nord-stream

With that in mind, here is Fox News/Reuters.

The Nord Stream gas pipeline system endured “unprecedented” damage to three offshore lines on the bed of the Baltic Sea in one day, Nord Stream AG, the network’s operator, said on Tuesday.

The AG said it was impossible to estimate when the gas network system’s working capability would be restored.

“The destruction that occurred on the same day simultaneously on three strings of the offshore gas pipelines of the Nord Stream system is unprecedented. It is not yet possible to estimate the timing of the restoration of the gas transport infrastructure,” the operator told reporters.

Nord Stream 1 features two parallel lines with a nominal capacity of 27.5 billion cubic meters per year each and started supplying gas directly from Russia to Germany in 2011.

Nord Stream gas pipeline

FILE- The Nord Stream gas pipeline system endured “unprecedented” damage to three offshore lines in one day, Nord Stream AG, the network’s operator, said on Tuesday. (Stefan Sauer/picture alliance via Getty Images / Getty Images)

Flows through the pipeline, which had been working at just 20% capacity since July, were stopped at the end of August and were not resumed after maintenance was finished.

Russia attributes the problem to faulty equipment at a key compressor station and Western sanctions over its war against Ukraine.

The Nord Stream 1 pipeline in Germany is pictured after it resumed pumping oil

FILE- The AG said it was impossible to estimate when the gas network system’s working capability would be restored. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber / AP Newsroom)

Nord Stream 2 runs almost parallel to Nord Stream 1. Nord Stream 2 was built in September 2021 but was never launched because Germany would not certify it. The project was stopped altogether just days ahead of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24.

The damaged lines come after ships were directed on Monday to steer clear of a five nautical mile radius off the island of Bornholm following an overnight gas leak from the defunct Russian Nord Stream 2 pipeline that had drained into the Baltic Sea, followed by Sweden’s Maritime Authority issuing a warning about two leaks in the Nord Stream 1 pipeline.

Russia Ukraine Nord Stream 2 Pipeline

FILE- The operator said the “destruction that occurred on the same day simultaneously on three strings of the offshore gas pipelines of the Nord Stream system is unprecedented.” (AP Photo/Michael Sohn, File / AP Newsroom)

The operator of the Nord Stream 1 pipeline also said Monday that a pressure drop had occurred on both lines of the gas pipeline.

Per Bloomberg, the leaks on the Nord Stream pipelines are forming an area of natural gas bubbles in the Baltic Sea, a video released by the Danish army on its website showed.

Ian Fleming wrote: “Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time is enemy action.”

In case there is any doubt, here is the Sock Puppet in Chief on February 7, 2022:

GBP Record Low on the Flash Crash

ust as last week ended, with a relentless meltup in the exponentially rising US dollar, coupled with a collapse in cable, the yen, yuan, euro and so on, not to mention stocks and bonds, so the new week begins only this time the moves are even faster, even more brutal and even more acute, as we approach the breaking point.

Case in point, after starting modestly higher, the meltup in the dollar accelerated, as the Bloomberg dollar index exploded to new all time highs…

… facilitated by a yen whose plunge made a mockery of Thursday’s multi-billion BOJ intervention…

… and is forcing Kuroda to sell even more tens of billions of US Treasurys, to cash into USDs which he will then sell for yen, in the process pushing up 10Y yields even higher, creating a toxic feedback loop of higher yields and an even higher dollar, sending yields higher and the dollar even higher.

But the imminent conclusion of Japan’s MMT experiment notwithstanding, the real highlight of the session so far has been the total collapse in sterling, whose implosion after Friday’s mini budget has accelerated and moments ago cable flash crashed to a new all time low of 1.0350, below the previous record low set in early 1985, and just millimeters away from parity as every single stop was taking out to the downside. .

And since there is nothing at all to contain the now exponential move in the USD, now that the entire world is facing one massive, $20 trillion short squeeze in USD-denominated debt…

… expect an emergency central bank meeting this week where panicking officials do everything they can to contain the dollar and to undo the tremendous damage the Powell Fed has unleashed on the world. Because in the end, it’s always the same.

The Dollar is our currency, but it is your problem“ – John Connolly, US Secretary to the Treasury – 1971.

Powell as Archangel Michael?

Giorno del giudizio – Dio, Paese, Famiglia

Tom Luongo: https://tomluongo.me/2022/09/23/as-democracy-dies-eu-its-sins-are-revealed/

It’s no secret at this point that the EU is an anti-democratic organization. The leadership isn’t elected, but selected from a pre-determined pool of candidates from within the Party structure.

Everyone with the power to make a decision was placed there not by popular vote but by backroom collusion.

As we approach this weekend’s Italian elections there is real despair in the air that there is any light out of this dark time. That no matter what decisions we try to make, they are only in service of those that seek total dominion.

And yet all you hear from these Eurocrats is that we are in a “war of Democracy versus Autocracy,” as EU Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen put it in her hellish EU state of the union address to the European Parliament recently.

Cloaking herself in the inverse of the EU flag’s colors to show solidarity with another anti-democratic regime, Ukraine, Von der Leyen and her merry tribe of vandals in Brussels cast themselves as the protectors of the sacred right of a ‘democracy’ they deny to anyone who disagrees with her.

The same can be said for nearly every major government in Europe. Every time an ‘election’ rolls around the local system is gamed to ensure a particular outcome. The political establishment always coalesces around maintaining the status quo, freezing out any possibility of an ‘unworkable’ or ‘representative’ coalition.

Any outcome they can’t overcome that lies outside the scope of the EU’s values is either laden with poison pills, immediately put under pressure by the EU’s Byzantine rules, and eventually forced out of office.

There is no better example of this anti-democratic structure made flesh than Italy.

For more than a decade Italians have been saddled with mostly-unelected technocratic governments who, at best, stymie any populist/sovereigntist impulses within Italy’s electorate or, at worst, advance the EU’s centralization agenda under the false rubrics of Climate Change and “European Values.”

European Values is a phrase that is synonymous with the phrase “rules-based order.” We make the rules, they say, and you abide by them. We’re allowed to break those rules because 1) we can and 2) we are the goodies.

So, it shouldn’t be a surprise that as the Italians go to the polls this weekend with the center-right coalition led by the Brothers of Italy (FdI) likely to win a major, uncontestable victory, the unelected, openly totalitarian President of the European Commission, Ursula Von der Leyen, openly threaten Italians to ‘vote right’ or face her wrath.

Corrupted unelected bureacurat Von der Leyen threatens the Italians: “We will see the result of the vote in Italy. If things go in a difficult direction, we have tools, as in the case of Poland and Hungary.” This is called meddling in elections VDL

Originally tweeted by AZ  (@AZmilitary1) on September 23, 2022.

I’ll be honest. Seeing that threat issued towards inherently disagreeable Italians coming from a German bureaucrat will not go as she thinks it will.

When you run out of the power to persuade people the only things left is threats (no matter how empty) and subterfuge. Italy has been trended towards this moment for over a decade and to this point subterfuge has worked particularly well for the EU.

Now it’s down to open threats and ‘consequences.’

Ask Hungary about those ‘consequences.’ The EU parliament this week exercised its only real power, wagging their finger sternly at a member who doesn’t represent the majority’s conception of ‘European Values’ by declaring the democratically-elected (by a landslide) government of Viktor Orban is ‘not a democracy.’

Orwell’s O’Brien would be proud.

This declaration means they have the ability to withhold shared EU development funds from Hungary.

This is called ‘blackmail’ in common parlance.

Moments like this always invoke the great Lew Rockwell reminding us that the government engages in behavior decent people would be ashamed of. It’s more of the “rules-based order” I keep hearing so much about, I guess.

The rough translation to all of these issues is “rules for me and not for thee,” the very essence of San Francis’ description of anarcho-tyranny. The EU is truly an anarcho-tyrannical State where words only have the meanings they decide they have.

And definitions are malleable.

The goal is to pervert the meanings of words to destroy any concept of meaning itself. Doing that unmoors us from our beliefs, seeing only them as the arbiters of truth.

Orwell tried to warn us about this 74 years ago. Moreover, it’s the mechanism by which to subvert our common bonds as people and replace them with the State.

Dexter White, writing for this month’s Gold Goats ‘n Guns Newsletter, covered this subverting the sacred and turning it into the profane, originally defined as “of this world” as an antipode to the sacred, while discussing Biden’s Reichstag Fire speech at Independence Hall:

To make something of this world, you must remove it from the realm of the sacred and make it profane. We used to reserve the sacred to the temple.

The goal of the left is to deny the sanctum, in total. The only ideas allowed are the profane ones, even while they are described in sacred language.

This transition, the act of sacralizing the profanities, is deliberate. It’s what George Orwell was getting at with the concept of newspeak in Nineteen Eighty-Four.

The sacred is displaced, in its entirety, by the profane, to the point that it can no longer be spoken of because we no longer have the words to do so.

DEXTER K. WHITE, “WELCOME TO THE PROFANUM,” ISSUE 61 GGNG NEWSLETTER

So, rights, which are supposed to be sacred and inviolate are now equated with ‘democracy,’ a purely terrestrial concept, the very essence of the profane. We can only have rights the ‘democracy’ grants us, rather than those rights being inherent in our individuality or given to us by God.

To continue exercising our rights means submitting to the whim of the majority, their immediate needs. This is that typical appeal to the ‘common good’ and all those other Star Trek/Marvel level platitudes that are shoved down our throat by the purveyors of the profane (and the obscene) in Hollywood.

Any celebration of the sacred is to be met with brutal denunciation. The gatekeepers of the profane in the media — critics, columnists and talk-show hosts — are all hyper-aware of these threats. They perform their role as gatekeepers almost unconsciously.

In mythological terms the gargoyle guards the entrance to the temple, the profane that guards the sacred at the cost of his own humanity. Biden defiled the Marine corps having them at his speech, itself a desecration of the location.

It should be considered an unforgiveable offense.

That’s where media enforcement comes in, through amplification of one side and the censorship of the other. It’s why a hundred people fleeing Russia’s mobilization order makes the news but the thousands standing in line at military registration centers do not.

Hungary’s sin was voiced eloquently by Balazs Hidveghi, MEP for Hungary, after the recent vote to strip them of their ‘democracy’ status.

“They are simply unable to accept the fact that the people of Hungary have elected a Conservative government for the fourth time in a row,” the politician argued. “A government that dares to defend its nation’s interests, one that stands in the way of the extreme left’s ideology.

“That is the real ‘sin’ of Hungary, and that is why all these unfounded lies are coming from the left,”

And it is a sin in the minds of the Von der Leyens of the world for the EU represents their new temple, the apotheosis of their mad quest to finally make Communism work.

It’s also a sincere sin that Orban refuses to subordinate Hungary’s Christian morals and values to those “European Values” held so sacred by Von der Leyen. If you weren’t paying attention the Orthodox Patriarch of Serbia presented Orban with its highest honor recently.

On September 5, Patriarch Porfirije presented Orbán with the gold degree of the Order of Saint Sava, which is the highest decoration awarded by the Serbian Church. The ceremony took place at the Carmelite Monastery in Budapest, the current seat of Hungary’s prime ministers.

The news would not, perhaps, be worthy of special note were it not for the Patriarch’s speech justifying the award and Orbán’s response. Both addresses summarize the malaise of today’s Europe. Both represent a welcome example of solidarity and unity among Christian believers belonging to different traditions (Orbán is a Protestant at the helm of a mostly Roman Catholic nation). Both are therefore worth bringing in translation to our readers, as no other outlet in the Western world will do so.

As Srdja Trifkovic put it, this move sees both men as ‘lights in a dark world.’

Von der Leyen’s threat to Italy is the same move just made against Hungary, “Vote the right way, or you will lose the EU’s support.” The problem with that threat, however, is that Italy is not Hungary.

Hungary is a state the EU wants to have fully under its control. Crushing its nationalism and cultural identity is necessary to keep the other Eastern European countries in line and to project a united front, one supernation under NATO, indivisible, with liberty and justice defined for all.

That said, the EU doesn’t need Hungary to survive. But neither can it be allowed to oppose the majority, lest it undermine their authority. That mouse cannot be allowed to roar.

So, not only will Hungary lose its status, because it has exercised its right of refusal to go along with Commissar Von der Leyen’s policies on sanctioning Russia, the EU is now finding that “European Values” no longer require unanimous consent.

The push is on to reform the EU charter to remove each country’s veto power over taxes and foreign policy.

On the other hand, Italy is the second-biggest economy in the EU. It represents the third leg of the tripod on which the entire European Project is built.

So, while the EU wants Hungary crushed to keep Eastern Europe in line and push through its new ‘democratic’ reforms, it needs Italy or the whole EU collapses.

And at that point I have to remind Ms. Von der Lyin’ of the oldest adage in banking.

When you owe the bank $1000 it’s your problem.

When you owe the bank a trillion dollars, it’s the bank’s problem.

And that’s where we are today. Italy’s debt problems thanks to the EU’s mad insistence of keeping control over Italy’s political system are far worse today than they were in 2011 when Silvio Berlusconi was ousted and technocrat Mario Monti was installed.

Mario Draghi only compounded the problem taking the ECB and all of Europe to negative interest rates for nearly a decade. Christine Lagarde was brought in to keep the ball rolling while Draghi was installed to ensure Italy was hog-tied to the EU Commission through COVID relief funds, a bill that Draghi was not able to get passed.

Today Italy’s TARGET2 liabilities are the EU’s liabilities. There is no mechanism to pay them back. There is only default, hyperinflation or both. The leaders of the center-right coalition about to take power in Italy have to realize their leverage in this situation.

Because it is immense and it renders every syllable of Von der Lyin’s threat as hollow and devoid of substance as the power she ultimately thinks she exercises.

And that brings us to the market meltdown we saw after the Fed raised interest rates in the US again by 0.75% on the eve of Italy’s elections and the referenda of four Ukrainian Oblasts to decide who they want to be ruled by, Russia or Ukraine.

The choice for them is simple. The corruption of what they are voting for is meant to complicate that decision.

Every day brings another note about the manufactured energy crisis in Europe using ‘punishing the autocrat Putin’ excuse to cover their real intentions, nationalization of major industries, wholesale debt default and centralization of power across the continent to the EU.

And if it means doing away with functioning capital markets and the middle class that sustains them, then so be it. It’s for the common good, after all.

Another tranche of people finally hit the ‘acceptance’ phase of the Kubler-Ross model on the death of the “Fed Put” and the lie that Europe’s problems are solvable this week. They looked at their portfolios and, waking up from a long, lost weekend at Bernie’s, hit the sell button.

Repeatedly.

Sadly, there are still too many people in ‘denial’ and ‘bargaining’ to really catalyze the revolt against these revolting Eurocrats.

The rush into the US dollar has only just begun. Whatever happens in Italy and Ukraine this weekend will have profound effects on the future of the West.

At the climax of Matt Reeves’ The Batman, Bruce leads the fallen people of Gotham out of the darkness of a biblical flood brought on by the city’s sins to an uncertain future, vowing to finally embrace that role to guard what’s left while the city rebuilds.

I don’t know what Europe will turn into over the next few months, but the one thing we can safely say is that it won’t be a triumph of ‘democracy.’ ‘European values,’ on the other hand, will have been properly defined as the obscenity they truly have become.

«Генерал Зима» на марше!

Severe Weather Europe: https://www.severe-weather.eu/global-weather/polar-vortex-cooling-forecast-winter-2022-2023-influence-united-states-europe-fa/

WHEN THE NORTH POLE STARTS COOLING

 
As we head into autumn, the polar regions start to receive less sunlight. With less solar energy, temperatures begin to drop and seasonal cooling begins over the north pole.

But as the polar temperatures drop, the atmosphere further to the south is still relatively warm as it continues to receive light and energy from the Sun.

You can see the winter solstice in the image below. The polar regions receive little to zero solar energy compared to regions further south, which still receive plenty of sunlight and warmth.

winter-season-solstice-polar-vortex-cooling-jet-stream-movement-united-states-weather-development

But, as temperature drops over the polar regions, so does the pressure. This process is the same on the surface and up in the Stratosphere.

You can see the layers of the atmosphere in the image below. The troposphere (blue layer) and the weather are on the bottom, and the Stratosphere (green layer) with the ozone layer above it.

polar-vortex-winter-weather-2022-2023-forecast-united-states-pattern-atmospheric-warming-layers

This causes a strong global pressure difference between the polar and sub-tropical regions, and a large low-pressure (cyclonic) circulation starts to develop across the Northern Hemisphere. It extends from the surface layer far up into the Stratosphere. This is known as the Polar Vortex.

We produced a 3-dimensional display of the Polar Vortex, extending from the lower levels into the Stratosphere. The vertical axis is greatly enhanced for better visual purposes. You can see in the image below what the actual structure of the Polar Vortex looks like.

winter-2022-2023-polar-vortex-warming-collapse-weather-forecast-united-states-north-hemisphere-pressure-3D-structure

Its upper (stratospheric) part is more circular and symmetrical as it spins higher above the ground. The lower structure of the polar vortex is much more uneven and disrupted. That is due to the influence of the terrain/mountains and strong pressure systems acting as obstacles in the flow.

The image below shows a typical example of the high-altitude Polar Vortex at around 30km/18.5miles in the middle Stratosphere during Winter. It is circular in shape, with the temperature dropping quickly towards its inner core.

polar-vortex-winter-weather-2022-2023-forecast-cold-season-united-states-north-hemisphere-stratosphere-pressure-pattern-anomaly

The stronger winds are typically found in the outer edge, also called “the surf zone”. As you will soon find out, winds are very important when talking about the polar vortex, as they are usually the first to show that something in the polar vortex is changing.

In the next image below, we have the bottom of the polar vortex at around 5km/3miles. The closer to the ground we go, the more deformed the polar vortex gets because it has to interact with the mountains and overall terrain.

polar-vortex-weather-winter-2022-2023-united-states-europe-north-hemisphere-cyclone-circulation

Be aware of its “arms” extending into the lower latitudes, bringing along colder air and snowfall. These arms also pack a lot of energy and can create strong winter storms, like a Noreaster’ in the United States or cold air outbreaks in Europe.

So to recap, the Polar Vortex behaves like a very large cyclone, covering the whole north pole, down to the mid-latitudes. It is connected through all atmospheric levels, from the ground up, but usually has different shapes at different altitudes.

We are typically focusing more on the Stratospheric Polar Vortex, as it plays a very important role in weather development throughout the winter season. It is known for its strong influence down from the Stratosphere.

To put the Polar Vortex into perspective, we produced a high-resolution video below, showing the vortex spinning over the Northern Hemisphere in the Stratosphere at the 30mb level, around 23km/14miles altitude.

The video shows the NASA GEOS-5 analysis for late January 2022. Notice how the stratospheric vortex covers a large part of the Northern Hemisphere. This is because it spins over the Northern Hemisphere, driving also the winter weather below with its circulation.

 
The main takeaway from the video should be that the Polar Vortex is not just one single winter storm or a cold outbreak that moves from the Midwest into the northeastern United States.

It is one large cyclonic area spinning over the entire Northern Hemisphere, from the ground up to the top of the Stratosphere and beyond, reaching over 50km/31miles in altitude.
 

POLAR VORTEX SEASON 2022/2023 BEGINS

 
As we mentioned above, the cooling over the north pole has already begun. Below is the NASA analysis graph for temperature in the mid-stratosphere over the north pole. The blue line is last year, and the grey/white areas are historical data.

polar-vortex-weather-winter-middle-stratosphere-temperature-graph-2022-2023-nasa-analysis

The cooling of the Stratosphere typically starts in August, increasing strongly over September and October. Finally, the Stratosphere reaches its coolest period in November and December, when the polar vortex is usually the strongest.

Currently, the temperature is already dropping in the Stratosphere. In the image below, you can see the temperature change forecast for late September. It shows ongoing cooling over and around the North Pole.

polar-vortex-16-day-stratosphere-temperature-change-cooling-cold-weather-season

Looking at the actual temperature forecast, we can see a cold core developing over the polar circle. This is the heart of the Polar Vortex, as the colder it gets, the stronger the polar vortex can become. That is because it feeds off the temperature/pressure difference between the polar and the southern regions of the Northern Hemisphere.

polar-vortex-winter-2022-2023-mid-stratosphere-temperature-september-16-day-forecast

The pressure is also starting to drop rapidly. The image below shows the geopotential height of 10mb level (~30km altitude). As a result, a smaller low-pressure area starts to develop over the Arctic Circle. That is the foundation for the polar vortex of the upcoming Winter 2022/2023.

polar-vortex-winter-2022-2023-mid-stratosphere-geopotential-height-pressure-analysis-september

Looking at the forecast for late September, as shown below, you can see the polar vortex is much more developed and rapidly increasing in size and influence. As the pressure drops in the polar vortex, it increases its wind speed and depth. The stronger it gets, the easier it is to influence our weather down at the surface.

polar-vortex-winter-2022-2023-mid-stratosphere-geopotential-height-pressure-16-day-forecast

Speaking of wind, the current forecast shows the stratospheric jet stream developing. This is also called the Polar Night Jet. The image below shows the stratospheric jet stream in the upper Stratosphere at 1mb level (~45km/28mi altitude)

polar-vortex-winter-2022-2023-upper-stratosphere-wind-speed-16-day-forecast

Looking at the 10mb level (~30km/18.5mi altitude) forecast, we can see the stratospheric jet stream at this level. It has a nice oval shape and is already almost connected across the entire Northern Hemisphere.

polar-vortex-winter-2022-2023-mid-stratosphere-wind-speed-16-day-forecast

The strength of the stratospheric jet stream at the 10mb level is usually used to determine the strength of the polar vortex and its potential influence on the weather. This is especially the case during the early and mid-winter when it is strongest.

Compared to the long-term average, current forecasts show that the strength of the polar vortex is likely to be around average in late September.

That is seen in the image below, which shows the forecast of the stratospheric jet stream at 10mb (~30km). Red lines denote the average values. This might not mean much for now, but it shows that the polar vortex has a more energetic start than usual.

stratospheric-polar-vortex-wind-speed-ensemble-forecast-early-season

Lower down towards the surface, we can still see these winds, but we call it the jet steam. The image below shows the wind speed forecast for late September, at around 5km (3 miles) altitude.

polar-vortex-winter-2022-2023-lower-atmosphere-jet-stream-pattern-forecast

Like in the Stratosphere, lower down, we still see the polar circulation (the jet stream) edging the Polar Vortex in the lower levels. Again, this shows that the overall weather circulation is connected on many levels and into a single system.

The 3-dimensional polar vortex forecast shows a good structure appearing higher up in the Stratosphere in late September. However, you can see that it is not connected down yet, as the structure is just building while the Northern Hemisphere is cooling further.

stratospheric-polar-vortex-3-dimensional-structure-north-hemisphere-forecast-september-2022

Now we know what the Polar Vortex is and how it works. But why do we care about it? As you will now see, the Polar Vortex has the power to do many things regarding weather, especially during Winter when it is strongest.
 

POLAR VORTEX AND WINTER WEATHER

 
As we mentioned before, a Polar Vortex can be either strong or weak (collapsed). Each phase has its role, but we will look at both extremes, the strong and the collapse event.

strong Polar Vortex usually means strong polar circulation. This usually locks the colder air into the Polar regions, creating milder conditions for most of the United States and Europe.

In contrast, a weak Polar Vortex can create a weak jet stream pattern. It has a more challenging time containing the cold air, which can now escape from the polar regions into the United States and/or Europe. Image by NOAA.

polar-vortex-weather-forecast-north-hemisphere-what-is-strong-weak-polar-vortex-winter-pattern

Starting with a strong Polar Vortex, it is exactly as the name suggests. It is colder and deeper, exerting more of its influence on our everyday weather. A good example occurred less than three years ago.

Below is an analysis of the Stratospheric polar vortex in February and March of 2020. As you can see, we can see significant negative anomalies in the core of the Polar Vortex. This means it is deeper and stronger than normal.

polar-vortex-winter-2022-2023-strong-cold-event-stratosphere-anomaly

A stronger stratospheric vortex usually has an easier way of connecting down to the lower levels, changing the circulation. We can see that if we look at the pressure anomalies in the lower levels, as seen in the image below.

polar-vortex-winter-2022-2023-strong-cold-event-pressure-anomaly-pattern

You can see the lower pressure locked into the Arctic circle, surrounded by a strong circulation. That circulation locks the cold air into the polar regions, making it harder to escape.

Speaking of temperatures, below we have the temperature analysis for this same period. Again, you can see much warmer than normal late winter weather over the United States, southern Canada, and Europe. This results from the cold air being locked further to the north.

polar-vortex-winter-2022-2023-strong-cold-event-surface-temperature-arctic-oscillation

You do not want to see this if you live in the mid-latitudes and you like your winter weather colder and served with snow. But there is another phase, perhaps even more impactful than the strong one.
 

SUDDEN STRATOSPHERIC WARMING EVENT

 
Typically, a polar vortex weakens due to a rise in temperature and pressure in the Stratosphere. That is called a Sudden Stratospheric Warming (SSW) event, which can collapse the Polar Vortex.

Simplified, a Sudden Stratospheric Warming event (SSW) is exactly what the name suggests. It is a sudden temperature rise in the polar Stratosphere during Winter. Warming of the Stratosphere means that the polar vortex is weakened and can also collapse under pressure from the warming event.

This creates a chain reaction, disrupting the jet stream, creating high pressure over the Arctic circle, and releasing the cold arctic air into Europe and the United States. An SSW event is usually triggered by specific massive pressure patterns in the troposphere, which can send a lot of energy upwards vertically into the Stratosphere.

winter-2022-2023-sudden-stratospheric-warming-evolution-example

One such event occurred on January 2021. On January 5th, the preliminary date of the Sudden Stratospheric Warming event was marked, as the winds around the polar circle have reversed.

The stratospheric warming wave has crawled over the entire North Pole in the Stratosphere, effectively splitting the cold core of the polar vortex into two parts.

polar-vortex-split-weather-winter-united-states-major-warming-temperature-event

One part of the broken polar vortex has moved over North America and one over the European sector. At this point, this does not influence the winter weather on the surface so much. This is because it occurs at over 30km (18 miles) altitude. But the weather influence followed quite soon after.

Looking at the NASA temperature analysis for the polar Stratosphere, we can see a significant temperature spike at the 10mb (30km) level in early 2021. This shows a strong warming event, with temperatures staying above normal for weeks after.

polar-vortex-weather-winter-stratosphere-warming-event-nasa-graph

When trying to find a connection between the Stratosphere and our winter weather, it helps to have more specialized images at hand. The image below shows an atmospheric pressure index. Negative values indicate lower pressure (blue colors), and positive values indicate higher pressure (red colors). We have altitude from the ground up to the top of the stratosphere (~46km/28mi) for the Winter/Spring 2021 period.

polar-vortex-arctic-oscillation-vertical-analysis-pressure-anomaly-winter-2020-2021

In early January, strong positive values in the Stratosphere are associated with the higher pressure buildup during the stratospheric warming event. The event and its influence slowly descended over time, reaching the lower levels by mid and late January.

This persisted well into February, influencing the weather patterns even when the stratospheric warming was already over.

We produced an analysis image of the January-February 2021 winter period, showing pressure and temperature anomalies. The image below shows the pressure anomalies, where a strong high-pressure system dominates the North Pole. This dominant high-pressure system originated from the stratospheric warming event and the polar vortex collapse.

winter-weather-january-february-2021-pressure-anomaly-after-ssw-united-states

A strong high-pressure system over the Arctic can heavily disrupt the weather circulation and can unlock the cold air from the Arctic regions towards the mid-latitudes.

The image below shows the temperature anomalies in January-February 2021 period. Warmer than normal temperatures were present under the high-pressure system over the polar regions. SSW pushed cold Arctic air out into Canada and most parts of the United States.

winter-weather-january-february-2021-temperature-anomaly-united-states-canada-after-ssw

The weather after a Polar Vortex collapse event is not always the same. A lot depends on the pre-existing weather patterns, as in some cases, the effect of stratospheric warming can be “deflected” or doesn’t mix into the lower parts very well.

We get an interesting picture if we combine all Stratospheric Warming events and look at the weather 0-30 days following the stratospheric warming events.
 

WINTER WEATHER AFTER A POLAR VORTEX COLLAPSE

 
Below is the average pressure anomaly after a stratospheric warming event. It corresponds to a negative NAO pattern. This heavily disrupted circulation pattern helps to create a free path for colder polar air to move out of the polar regions.

polar-vortex-winter-2022-2023-stratospheric-warming-pressure-change-anomaly

The corresponding average temperature 0-30 days after an SSW event shows that most of the United States are trending colder than normal, as is Europe. Note: this is an average picture of many SSW events. Each individual stratospheric warming event is different and does not automatically mean a strong winter pattern.

polar-vortex-winter-2022-2023-stratospheric-warming-surface-temperature-change

Looking at snowfall, we can see above-average snowfall over much of the eastern United States and also Europe. This is an expected response, as typically, after major stratospheric warming, the colder air has an easier path towards the south and into these regions.

major-stratosphere-warming-weather-snowfall-impact-north-hemisphere-winter-forecast-2022-2023

So as you can see, having a strong or weak Polar Vortex can significantly change Winter weather over the United States, Canada, and Europe. However, it does not happen yearly, as it depends on many other factors.

So what is the early outlook for the Polar Vortex and winter weather in the upcoming 2022/2023 season?
 

POLAR VORTEX AND WINTER 2022/2023

 
We have discussed the La Nina phase of the ENSO and its influence in our first Winter forecast, so check it out for more details on the La Nina and the ENSO cycle. We will link it at the bottom of the article.

To keep it simple, La Nina is what we call the cold/negative anomalies in the tropical Pacific Ocean. It forms under certain conditions and can change the weather globally on a seasonal scale.

You can see the La Nina in the image below. We know what an effect La Nina might make on global circulation, and thus we can anticipate what it might mean for the Polar Vortex. 

winter-forecast-2022-2023-sea-surface-temperature-anomaly-pacific-united-states-september-analysis-data

Historically, a La Nina winter has around a 60-75% chance of producing a stratospheric warming event. It has produced them in the past and also in the last Winter. The image below shows the typical Sudden Stratospheric Warming event frequency by month and by the ENSO event.

polar-vortex-collapse-weather-forecast-winter-2022-2023-el-nino-la-nina-data-update

As you can see, a La Nina phase has a higher chance of producing a Polar Vortex collapse event. It also produces one later in Winter, compared to an El Nino.

Below we have an analysis/forecast graphic by ECMWF, which shows the long-range forecast of the main ENSO region. The La Nina conditions will prevail over the Fall and Winter. But a weakening of the La Nina is expected for early next year, with an El Nino possible for later in 2023.

ecmwf-winter-forecast-2022-2023-enso-temperature-anomaly-seasonal-graph-data

Current signals show an increased potential for a stratospheric warming event in mid-winter, based on an active La Nina. But a lot depends on positioning the massive high and low-pressure systems in the North Pacific.

This is where other short-term factors also come into play, like weekly weather variability, tropical convection, other ocean temperature anomalies, etc.

We have an interesting picture now of the forecast for the upcoming seasons. The ECMWF forecast for the 10mb stratospheric zonal winds shows a reduction in the power of the stratospheric winds in late Fall and early Winter.

polar-vortex-collapse-weather-forecast-winter-2022-2023-north-hemisphere-update

As winds are directly related to the strength of the Polar Vortex, we can see this as a signal for a weakening of the Polar Vortex. This would imply a more disrupted pattern and a chance of high-latitude blocking, thus more cold air in the United States and Europe.

It gives us a signal to keep an eye on, as these dynamics can have a large-scale and long-lasting impact on the weather pattern during Winter.

We will keep you updated on the global weather pattern development for the coming seasons, so make sure to bookmark our page. Also, if you have seen this article in the Google App (Discover) feed, click the like button (♥) there to see more of our forecasts and our latest articles on weather and nature in general.

Don’t miss:

Winter forecast 2022/2023: First in-depth look at Winter and how the weather patterns will develop under the new La Nina influence

************************

That was Severe Weather Europe.

Here is the GOES current data as of yesterday for the Northern Hemisphere.

Note the eastern European vortex for 10 mb.

В России не играют в покер. Россия играет в шахматы.

Larry Johnson: https://sonar21.com/will-europe-break-with-the-united-states/

WILL EUROPE BREAK WITH THE UNITED STATES?

23 September 2022 by Larry Johnson 

I received a great questions from a German reader who also happens to be a journalist. He asked, “What would be a way and what would be the practical implications if Europe in general and Germany in particular were to break with the US in order to find a European peace and economic framework including Russia? ”

The craven sycophancy demonstrated by Germany, France and the United Kingdom in their passionate embrace of America’s confrontation with Russia is now on life support. Despite continued bombastic threats to keep arming Ukraine until Russia collapses, economic reality is hitting the Europeans like an icy cold shower from a fire hose. Rapid inflation, particularly in the energy sector, is forcing factories and businesses to shutter operations. The de-industrialization of Europe, especially Germany and the UK, has started. German steel plants are closing, German bakeries are trying to figure out how to pay soaring utility bills while still making bread and pretzels and German toilet-paper manufacturer Hakle GmbH has applied for insolvency proceedings in self-administration. If you don’t have a bidet or a bucket full of sand, toilet paper is an essential item. The inflationary spiral may lead to the day where it is cheaper to wipe your ass with a 100 Euro note than three sheets of Hakle.

So, the economic situation in each of the countries is going to create enormous domestic pressure for the respective European governments, which currently are cheer-leading Ukraine and cursing Russia, to rethink their policies. The Russia/Ukraine war already has created significant fissures among EU members, with Hungary refusing to impose further sanctions on Russia. Cold, hungry voters will become increasingly outraged at sending millions of dollars to Ukraine while deprivation multiples from Berlin to London.

Europe’s rift with Russia is huge and Russia is not in a mood to forgive the insults hurled at all things Russian, theft of Russian financial resources and Europe’s facilitation of terrorist attacks on the soon to be new Russian citizens from the oblasts of Kherson, Zaporhyzhia, Donetsk and Luhansk. Russia holds the critical trump card–it can turn on the flow of gas and oil essential to rekindle manufacturing and home heating in Europe. But I do not think Russia will do so without a quid pro quo. What could that be?

How about Europe breaking with NATO? Or, more simply put, the break up of NATO. Up to this point Europe has embraced the delusion that Russia cannot function economically without a European market. The last six months of Russia’s Special Military Operation have proven that the opposite is true–without Russia’s key resources Europe is a dead economy walking naked into a frozen winter.

Europe’s two largest trading partners are China and the United States. Europe runs a trade deficit with China. If China demands payment in dollars, rather Euros, then the inflationary pressure on Europe will escalate. Why? Because the value of the U.S. dollar has soared relative to the Euro and British pound sterling. They will have to spend more Euros to buy dollars, which means the trade deficit with China is likely to worsen.

The situation with the United States is the opposite. The United States has run a deficit with Europe who, in turn, has enjoyed a surplus. That surplus will go away or, at a minimum, shrink dramatically. Germany’s ability to export products to the United States will weaken because of the price of the dollar and because European factories will close or cut back on production.

Barring a miracle turnaround–i.e, inflation disappears and the energy crisis dissipates–the situation in Europe will become more dire. The history of these kinds of economic upheaval is littered with the corpses of politicians that insisted on pushing policies that hurt their voters. Germany’s Wiemar Republic’s failure paved the way for the rise of Adolf Hitler to power. I am not suggesting a new Hitler is waiting in the wings, but I do believe that the power now wielded by the Greens across Europe will be curtailed or even snuffed out.

The United States is facing its own looming economic disaster. The collapse of the stock market–now down over 20% since the first of the year–is likely to continue. Notwithstanding the Biden administration’s strident insistence that there is no recession, the signs of recession are mounting, especially in the housing market. But the worsening economic picture is not yet sufficient to generate the necessary political pressure among the propagandized American electorate to back away from sending billions to Ukraine. A major shock of stagflation or a collapse of the Ukrainian army, however, could change that calculus.

The United States and Europe are playing a high stakes poker game with Russia. They’ve bet all their chips that Ukraine will either defeat Russia or force Russia to the bargaining table and that Putin, with hat in hand, will crawl on his belly before the western masters and beg for relief. That is insane. But there are many politicians and pundits inhabiting the dark corners of Washington who keenly believe this fantasy.

Russia does not play poker. Russia plays chess and plays it well. Russia’s burgeoning trade and military relations with China, Iran, India and Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Brazil is making Putin’s position stronger, not weaker. The eventual collapse of Ukraine as a result of a wrecked economy and/or battlefield defeats, will be more than a black eye for NATO and, by extension, Europe. It would likely destroy the raison detre’ for NATO. That in turn will lay the foundation for a rapprochement with Russia sans the United States.

The age of the United States’ Colossus is nearing its end. Uncle Sam will no longer have a pack of yipping European Yorkshires, Poodles and Dachshunds on a leash. I think we are on the threshold of a new multi-polar international order that will finally shatter the legacy of European colonialism and American imperialism. As Garland Nixon has wisely noted, “General Winter is on the march.”

EURUSD

EURRUB

USDRUB

Snowden: America’s Open Wound

Snowden: https://edwardsnowden.substack.com/p/americas-open-wound

“Better that right counsels be known to enemies than that the evil secrets of tyrants should be concealed from the citizens. They who can treat secretly of the affairs of a nation have it absolutely under their authority; and as they plot against the enemy in time of war, so do they against the citizens in time of peace.”

― Baruch Spinoza

It hasn’t been a month since President Biden mounted the steps of Philadelphia’s Independence Hall, declaring it his duty to ensure each of us understands the central faction of his political opposition are extremists that “threaten the very foundations of our Republic.” Flanked by the uniformed icons of his military and standing atop a Leni Riefenstahl stage, the leader clenched his fists to illustrate seizing the future from the forces of “fear, division, and darkness.” The words falling from the teleprompter ran rich with the language of violence, a “dagger at the throat” emerging from the “shadow of lies.”

“What’s happening in our country,” the President said, “is not normal.”

Is he wrong to think that? The question the speech intended to raise—the one lost in the unintentionally villainous pageantry—is whether and how we are to continue as a democracy and a nation of laws. For all the Twitter arguments over Biden’s propositions, there has been little consideration of his premises.

Democracy and the rule of law have been so frequently invoked as a part of the American political brand that we simply take it for granted that we enjoy both.

Are we right to think that?


Our glittering nation of laws observes this year two birthdays: the 70th anniversary of the National Security Agency, on which my thoughts have been recorded, and the 75th anniversary of the Central Intelligence Agency.

The CIA was founded in the wake of the 1947 National Security Act. The Act foresaw no need for the Courts and Congress to oversee a simple information-aggregation facility, and therefore subordinated it exclusively to the President, through the National Security Council he controls.

Within a year, the young agency had already slipped the leash of its intended role of intelligence collection and analysis to establish a covert operations division. Within a decade, the CIA was directing the coverage of American news organizations, overthrowing democratically elected governments (at times merely to benefit a favored corporation), establishing propaganda outfits to manipulate public sentiment, launching a long-running series of mind-control experiments on unwitting human subjects (purportedly contributing to the creation of the Unabomber), and—gaspinterfering with foreign elections. From there, it was a short hop to wiretapping journalists and compiling files on Americans who opposed its wars.

In 1963, no less than former President Harry Truman confessed that the very agency he personally signed into law had transformed into something altogether different than he intended, writing:

“For some time I have been disturbed by the way CIA has been diverted from its original assignment. It has become an operational and at times a policy-making arm of the Government. This has led to trouble…”

Many today comfort themselves by imagining that the Agency has been reformed, and that such abuses are relics of the distant past, but what few reforms our democracy has won have been watered-down or compromised. The limited “Intelligence Oversight” role that was eventually conceded to Congress in order to placate the public has never been taken seriously by either the committee’s majority—which prefers cheerleading over investigating—or by the Agency itself, which continues to conceal politically-sensitive operations from the very group most likely to defend them.

“Congress should have been told,” said [Senator] Dianne Feinstein. “We should have been briefed before the commencement of this kind of sensitive program. Director Panetta… was told that the vice president had ordered that the program not be briefed to Congress.”

How can we judge the ultimate effectiveness of oversight and reforms? Well, the CIA plotted to assassinate my friend, American whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg, in 1972, yet nearly fifty years of “reforms” did little to inhibit them from recently sketching out another political murder targeting Julian Assange. Putting that in perspective, you probably own shoes older than the CIA’s most recent plot to murder a dissident… or rather the most recent plot that we know of.

If you believe the Assange case to be a historical anomaly, some aberration unique to Trump White House, recall that the CIA’s killings have continued in series across administrations. Obama ordered the killing of an American far from any battlefield, and killed his 16 year-old American son a few weeks later, but the man’s American daughter was still alive by the time Obama left.

Within a month of entering the White House, Trump killed her.

She was 8 years old.

Nawar al-Awlaki

It goes beyond assassinations. Within recent memory, the CIA captured Gul Rahman, who we know was not Al-Qaeda, but it seems did save the life of Afghanistan’s future (pro-US) President. Rahman was placed in what the Agency described as a “dungeon” and tortured until he died.

They stripped him naked, save a diaper he couldn’t change, in a cold so wicked that his guards, in their warm clothes, ran heaters for themselves. In absolute darkness, they bolted his hands and feet to a single point on the floor with a very short chain so that it was impossible to stand or lie down – a practice called “short shackling” – and after he died, claimed that it was for his own safety. They admit to beating him, even describing the “forceful punches.” They describe the blood that ran from his nose and mouth as he died.

Short-shackling, as described by survivors

Pages later, in their formal conclusion, the Agency declares that there was no evidence of beating. There was no of evidence torture. The CIA ascribes responsibility for his death to hypothermia, which they blamed on him for the crime of refusing, on his final night, a meal from the men that killed him.

The CIA claimed the complaints of a man they tortured to death — regarding the violation of his human rights — were evidence of a “sophisticated level of resistance training.”

In the aftermath, the Agency concealed the death of Gul Rahman from his family. To this day, they refuse to reveal what happened to his remains, denying those who survive him a burial, or even some locus of mourning.

Ten years after the torture program investigated, exposed, and ended, no one was charged for their role in these crimes. The man responsible for Rahman’s death was recommended for a $2,500 cash award — for “consistently superior work”.

A different torturer was elevated to the Director’s seat.


The Judgment of Solomon, Rubens, 1617

This summer, in a speech marking the occasion of the CIA’s 75th birthday, President Biden struck a quite different note than he did in Philadelphia, reciting what the CIA instructs all presidents: that the soul of the institution really lies in speaking truth to power.

“We turn to you with the big questions,” Biden said, “the hardest questions. And we count on you to give your best, unvarnished assessment of where we are.  And I emphasize “‘unvarnished.’”

But this itself is a variety of varnishing — a whitewash.

For what reason do we aspire to maintain — or achieve — a nation of laws, if not to establish justice?

Let us say we have a democracy, shining and pure. The people, or in our case some subset of people, institute reasonable laws to which government and citizen alike must answer. The sense of justice that arises within such a society is not produced as a result of the mere presence of law, which can be tyrannical and capricious, or even elections, which face their own troubles, but is rather derived from the reason and fairness of the system that results.

What would happen if we were to insert into this beautiful nation of laws an extralegal entity that is not directed by the people, but a person: the President? Have we protected the nation’s security, or have we placed it at risk?

This is the unvarnished truth: the establishment of an institution charged with breaking the law within a nation of laws has mortally wounded its founding precept. 

From the year it was established, Presidents and their cadres have regularly directed the CIA to go beyond the law for reasons that cannot be justified, and therefore must be concealed — classified. The primary result of the classification system is not an increase in national security, but a decrease in transparency. Without meaningful transparency, there is no accountability, and without accountability, there is no learning.Subscribe

The consequences have been deadly, for both Americans and our victims. When the CIA armed the Mujaheddin to wage war on Soviet Afghanistan, we created al-Qaeda’s Osama bin Laden. Ten years later, the CIA is arming, according to then-Vice President Joe Biden, “al-Nusra, and Al-Qaeda and the extremist elements of jihadis coming from other parts of the world.” After the CIA runs a disinformation operation to make life hard for the Soviet Union by fueling a little proxy war, the war rages for twenty-six years — far beyond the Union’s collapse.

Do you believe that the CIA today — a CIA free from all consequence and accountability — is uninvolved in similar activities? Can you find no presence of their fingerprints in the events of the world, as described in the headlines, that provide cause for concern? Yet it is those who question the wisdom of placing a paramilitary organization beyond the reach of our courts that are dismissed as “naive.”

For 75 years, the American people have been unable to bend the CIA to fit the law, and so the law has been bent to fit the CIA. As Biden stood on the crimson stage, at the site where the Declaration of Independence and Constitution were debated and adopted, his words rang out like the cry of a cracked-to-hell Liberty Bell: “What’s happening in our country is not normal.”

If only that were true. 

The Death of Achilles, Rubens

The Gloves Come Off

Meaning in History: https://meaninginhistory.substack.com/p/putin-lays-the-groundwork-for-the

Putin Lays The Groundwork For The War With NATO

Mark Wauck

That appears to be the meaning of the announcement of referenda in regions of the former Ukraine, as expanded by President Putin and MoD Shoigu early today. As we discussed yesterday, Russian Gamechanger, the referenda, by which at least four former Ukrainian oblasts will end up joining the Russian Federation, will also change the terms of engagement. The referenda provide the legal foundation for the new war going forward. It’s important to understand this—everything that Putin does is done in accordance with legal norms—the Russian constitution, Russian laws, and last but by no means least, international law. Please note that the US Rules Based Order doesn’t enter into this, because it is based not in law and right but in raw power. This step by step approach according to legal norms is very characteristic of Putin, and Andrei Martyanov explains its importance in understanding everything that Putin does (video at link):

Game Did Change

To repeat, yesterday we framed the implications of the referenda for the future of the conflict in Ukraine under these points:

  • First, these regions become part of Russia—and the inhabitants become Russian citizens.
  • Second, the Russian military will then be in full legal control of the military defense against attacks on Russian territory and Russian civilians.
  • Importantly, the military response would not require a declaration of war and would not require national mobilization. But the entire weight of the Russian military would be available to defend these new Russian areas. Up to now, the Special Military Operation has involved only a limited direct involvement of the Russian army.
  • This referenda procedure is endorsed, at least by the collective West, in International Law—remember, Putin has a degree in international law. The West supported the secession of Kosovo from Serbia. Once the principle of a right to secede is recognized, the next step of voting to join another nation appears quite acceptable. Notably, at the Samarkand summit, Putin rejected the notion of “annexation”. Clearly, the legal framework has been in the works for some time.
  • Putin will doubtless enjoy wide support for these measures within Russia, and the legal framework will mollify Russia’s supporters in non-Western countries.
  • All of this will put the collective West on the spot in terms of responding. More sanctions? Good luck.

Larry Johnson takes those points a step further this morning,

The referenda are part of a dance with Russian law. Russia’s Duma has met and passed legislation that will govern how new territories, along with their citizens, are admitted into the Russian Republic. I must emphasize that the decision to hold the referenda this week was made some weeks ago. Ukraine’s continued shelling of civilians in the Donbas made this move an imperative.

Once the votes are completed and the results announced, the next move will be Russia’s–i.e., welcoming the former Ukrainian oblasts into the Russian Republic. Once they are admitted, any further attack by Ukraine on those territories will be an act of war against Russia. Putin has made it very clear that he will act against any nation waging war against Russia and its citizens. This move is putting the United States and NATO on notice. If they continue to enable Ukrainian attacks on Russian citizens then they will be targeted in response.

We are crossing a threshold that could escalate into World War III. I am certain that Vladimir Putin is not playing games. …

This should sober the west up, but that is unlikely. …

Washington and NATO have shot their wad and have no credible conventional military force to counter Russia accepting the results of the referenda. Their only alternative beyond throwing a tantrum is to threaten the use of nuclear weapons.

Unlike the United States and the former global colonial powers, Russia is letting the people in the besieged Ukrainian oblasts decide. …

One final point. If China backs Russia on this move it is likely that Russia has provide China with guarantees that Moscow will support Beijing when it moves against Taiwan. We shall see.

So, we move on to what is added to the referenda move by the statements from Putin and Shoigu. Of the first importance is that both men stressed that the war with Ukraine was concluded “long ago.” The current war—or, certainly, the war we’re moving into—is a war with NATO, because the funding, the weapons, the tactics, and the direction are all NATO. The only thing left is “boots on the ground”, and there is reason to believe that that is a reality to a greater extent than most people in the West understand. The provision to “Ukraine”—meaning, the Ukrainian theater of NATO’s war on Russia—of long range missiles is imminently threatened, and some reports claim that such weapons systems have already arrived in Ukraine. That may have triggered the referenda and further moves by Putin.

Alex Krainer stresses the legal framework—note that we in the West have somehow wound up on George Soros’ side. Of course, we can always try objecting to our elected representatives and see where that gets us. I say that for the benefit of those who still think Lincoln’s strictures on government still hold sway. Thus, we are at the start of a war of two visions of governance:

The clash of two systems of governance, as George Soros famously formulated it in his remarks to the World Economic Conference in May, seems to have reached a phase transition. Russian President Vladimir Putin has returned from last week’s summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization conference in Samarkand with a palpable sense of confidence and determination, and it does appear that he has obtained reassurances of support from all the key leaders during the event, including China’s Xi Jinping, India’s Narendra Modi, Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Iran’s Ebrahim Raisi, and even the new PM of Pakistan, Shehbaz Sharif.

Russia is ready to shift gears

Now, the leadership of Russia is prepared to shift gears in Ukraine. … The people will be voting on whether they want to become absorbed in Russian federation. This move will have a massive impact and remove any legal strictures the Russian leadership observed by waging war in foreign territory. Soon, this could become Russian territory and any attacks on Kherson, Donetsk, Lugansk or Zaporozhye will be regarded as attacks on Russia proper.

Laws for thee, rules for me

This prospect has triggered quite a consternation in Washington, London and Bruxelles where political and military leaderships are sure to reject any such changes. American Secretary of State Antony Blinken wasted no time to declare that, “Any Russian sham ‘referenda’ in Ukraine would be illegitimate and an affront to the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity…

Some might disagree, however. In July 2010, the International Court of Justice issued an “Advisory Opinion” on Kosovo (previously part of Serbia) in which it determined a few important points of international law. Namely:

  1. Unilateral declarations of independence are not illegal under international law.
  2. People’s right to self-determination supersedes territorial integrity.

But some restrictions do apply, so these principles don’t extend to the likes of the people of Catalunya. Or Crimea. Or for any people in Ukraine for that matter. You see, there’s international law and then there’s the rulesWe use rules to determine which laws we observe and which ones we disregard. So rules must necessarily supersede the law. I think.

Rules based order or bust…

Jest aside, western empire is now overtly and explicitly committed to this “rules based global order,” and Russia is clearly the greatest threat to that order.

From a purely military standpoint, I’ll just state up front what I don’t believe the “partial mobilization” that was announced means. By the terms of the announcement, this partial mobilization is not about putting more troops on the front lines. Putting more troops on the front lines is provided for by the referenda—Russia will be accepting the legal responsibility to defend these areas as part of the Russian Federation. Russia has more than enough troops on active duty to do that. The reserves who will be called up under the partial mobilization will be specialists in various support roles, who will support the buildup of forces that is already going on.

A good place to start is Andrei Martyanov’s blog this morning:

They Wanted War.

They surely got one now

In a nationwide address on Wednesday morning, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a partial military mobilization. He explained that the Defense Ministry has recommended drawing military reservists into active service, as the country faces a protracted conflict in Ukraine and Donbass. …

It is, of course, a planned action preceding referenda of four oblast (regions) of former Ukraine to join Russia, which they will join most likely by the 1st of October and will need troops stationed at the new borders of Russian Federation while the further roll towards Nikolaev and Odessa commences. Kharkov could be the target too.

For those who still drink Kiev regime Kool Aid, Shoigu today went on record and stated the number of KIAs of Russian forces since the start of SMO (in Russian)–it is 5, 937 KIAs. Shoigu also stated that number of VSU KIAs is counted as 61,207 per Russian (usually very conservative) estimates. It was also confirmed that Kremlin refused to speak to Macron after his call to Moscow today (in Russian)there is nothing to talk about wiurope. I am sure they are preparing new “package” of sanctions, like… like… not buying Russian… beer or something.

Before we get to the text of Putin’s speech it may be useful to present a summary of MoD Sergey Shoigu’s statements, which are directed—naturally—at military aspects of the situation. Keep in mind, this is all about NATO now, as Shoigu emphasizes:

Statements by Sergei Shoigu on the partial mobilization and the course of the NWO, the main thing:

  • Ukraine lost half of the army: 61,207 dead, 49,368 wounded.
  • Losses of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation – 5937 people.
  • We are at war not so much with Ukraine as with the collective West.
  • “We see attacks against the civilian population almost every day. They hit hospitals, places full of people. This is total control over Western healers [?] and instructors. Many of them have recently arrived: 150 people. Western command directs operation from Kyiv
  • The entire NATO satellite constellation is working against us – more than 70 military and 200 civilian satellites are working to reconnoiter the location of our units

That last suggests that Russia may now target NATO satellites, which are absolutely essential for military operations against Russia. That is a very big step.

Now, on to Putin’s speech. It lasted about 13 minutes in Russian, which is extremely brief by Putinesque standards. It’s succinct and well organized. You can find the full text here, but I’ll provide excerpts. Notably, Putin begins with an historical presentation, much of which will be unfamiliar to those in the West, but very familiar to Russians. The conflict in Ukraine is clearly framed as an existential struggle to defend Russia’s existence as a sovereign nation and cultural entity, against an amoral Western elite:

The subject of this address is the situation in Donbass and the course of the special military operation to liberate it from the neo-Nazi regime, which seized power in Ukraine in 2014 as the result of an armed state coup.

The issue concerns the necessary, imperative measures to protect the sovereignty, security and territorial integrity of Russia and support the desire and will of our compatriots to choose their future independently, and the aggressive policy of some Western elites, who are doing their utmost to preserve their domination and with this aim in view are trying to block and suppress any sovereign and independent development centres in order to continue to aggressively force their will and pseudo-values on other countries and nations.

The goal of that part of the West is to weaken, divide and ultimately destroy our country. They are saying openly now that in 1991 they managed to split up the Soviet Union and now is the time to do the same to Russia, which must be divided into numerous regions that would be at deadly feud with each other.

They devised these plans long ago. They encouraged groups of international terrorists in the Caucasus and moved NATO’s offensive infrastructure close to our borders. They used indiscriminate Russophobia as a weapon, including by nurturing the hatred of Russia for decades, primarily in Ukraine, which was designed to become an anti-Russia bridgehead. They turned the Ukrainian people into cannon fodder and pushed them into a war with Russia, which they unleashed back in 2014. They used the army against civilians and organised a genocide, blockade and terror against those who refused to recognise the government that was created in Ukraine as the result of a state coup.

The reference to the Caucasus is not to Georgia—that comes under the separate heading of “moved NATO’s offensive infrastructure close to our borders.” Rather, the reference to the Caucasus is a reference to US support for Chechen terrorism, which has also been important in spreading extreme jihadi violence to many other areas of Central Asia and the Middle East.

I’m skipping quite a bit here. We come to Putin’s references to Novorossiya, a territory of the Russian Empire—it was never a part of a Ukrainian entity until assigned as such by the Russian Empire. You can find an interesting article about Novorossiya at the link, but this map should give you an idea of what Putin has in mind, and what his Russian listeners—unlike Westerners—will surely understand:

I want to stress the following. We know that the majority of people living in the territories liberated from the neo-Nazis, and these are primarily the historical lands of Novorossiya, do not want to live under the yoke of the neo-Nazi regime. People in the Zaporozhye and Kherson regions, in Lugansk and Donetsk saw and are seeing now the atrocities perpetrated by the neo-Nazis in the [Ukrainian-] occupied areas of the Kharkov region. The descendants of Banderites and members of Nazi punitive expeditions are killing, torturing and imprisoning people; they are settling scores, beating up, and committing outrages on peaceful civilians.

There were over 7.5 million people living in the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics and in the Zaporozhye and Kherson regions before the outbreak of hostilities. Many of them were forced to become refugees and leave their homes. Those who have stayed – they number about five million – are now exposed to artillery and missile attacks launched by the neo-Nazi militants, who fire at hospitals and schools and stage terrorist attacks against peaceful civilians.

We cannot, we have no moral right to let our kin and kith be torn to pieces by butchers; we cannot but respond to their sincere striving to decide their destiny on their own.

The parliaments of the Donbass people’s republics and the military-civilian administrations of the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions have adopted decisions to hold referendums on the future of their territories and have appealed to Russia to support this.

Having dealt with the SMO and the upcoming referenda, Putin shifts to the important point for the future—NATO’s war on Russia, aided and abetted by the globalist elites:

Friends,

The West has gone too far in its aggressive anti-Russia policy, making endless threats to our country and people. Some irresponsible Western politicians are doing more than just speak about their plans to organise the delivery of long-range offensive weapons to Ukraine, which could be used to deliver strikes at Crimea and other Russian regions.

Such terrorist attacks, including with the use of Western weapons, are being delivered at border areas in the Belgorod and Kursk regions. NATO is conducting reconnaissance through Russia’s southern regions in real time and with the use of modern systems, aircraft, vessels, satellites and strategic drones.

Washington, London and Brussels are openly encouraging Kiev to move the hostilities to our territory. They openly say that Russia must be defeated on the battlefield by any means, and subsequently deprived of political, economic, cultural and any other sovereignty and ransacked.

Here I believe Putin is not only calling up Russian historical memories of prior invasions, especially German invasions, but he is also calling up memories that will be very alive to most of his listeners—the looting of Russia by the West during the chaotic post USSR Putin years.

They have even resorted to nuclear blackmail. I am referring not only to the Western-encouraged shelling of the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant, which poses a threat of a nuclear disaster, but also to the statements made by some high-ranking representatives of the leading NATO countries on the possibility and admissibility of using weapons of mass destruction – nuclear weapons – against Russia.

I would like to remind those who make such statements regarding Russia that our country has different types of weapons as well, and some of them are more modern than the weapons NATO countries have. In the event of a threat to the territorial integrity of our country and to defend Russia and our people, we will certainly make use of all weapon systems available to us. This is not a bluff.

The citizens of Russia can rest assured that the territorial integrity of our Motherland, our independence and freedom will be defended – I repeat – by all the systems available to us. Those who are using nuclear blackmail against us should know that the wind rose can turn around.

It is our historical tradition and the destiny of our nation to stop those who are keen on global domination and threaten to split up and enslave our Motherland. Rest assured that we will do it this time as well.

I cannot believe that Putin’s very clear statements will not be followed up with direct action. We live in perilously interesting times. An important further note. Although Putin and Shoigu focus strictly on military matters, it remains that the economic war is going very well for Russia and very poorly for the West. The likelihood is for that to continue, but that—with Russia expressing its conviction that the West has launched an existential war on Russia—Russia will likely do what it can to intensify the economic war and make it even more painful for the collective West.

The NATO-Russia War

Sputnik News: https://sputniknews.com/20220921/shoigu-russia-at-war-with-collective-west-rather-than-ukraine-1101029246.html

Shoigu: Russia at War With Collective West Rather Than Ukraine

Both Russian president Vladimir Putin and Minister of Defense Sergei Shoigu delivered speeches on Wednesday in the wake of announcements by the Donbass Republics as well as the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions that they are planning to hold votes on joining Russia on September 23-27.

In his TV address on Wednesday, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that Russia was at war with the collective West rather than Ukraine.

“In reality, we are fighting the collective West plus NATO. When we speak about it, we mean not only the weapons being supplied [to Kiev] in huge batches, but also about systems of communication and information processing systems,” Shoigu said.

The Western states as well as NATO, he said, are supplying Kiev with “huge” amounts of weapons.

The minister went on to stress that the Ukrainian forces are increasingly using Western weapons to target civilian infrastructure, including hospitals.

He stressed that more than 70 military satellites and 200 civilian satellites are working to aid Ukraine and added that some 150 Western military specialists have been deployed to Kiev, de facto leading Ukrainian forces.

Military Losses of Russia and Ukraine

Touching upon the issue of the military costs of the armed conflict in Ukraine, Sergei Shoigu estimated that Kiev has lost half of its army, which originally had about 200,000 troops at the initial stage of Moscow’s special operation.

“Over this time, their losses amount to over 100,000 [military casualties]. This includes 61,207 deaths and 49,368 troops who were injured,” Shoigu said.

Over 2,000 foreign mercenaries were eliminated in Ukraine in the past months by Russians, the minister said, adding that 1,000 remain at the combat zone.

Russian losses, Shoigu noted, amount to 5,937, noting that the servicemen were “courageously fulfilling their duties.”

Partial Mobilization

Shoigu has also provided details on the military’s plans, explaining that partial mobilization in Russia is necessary to hold a 1,000-kilometer wide line of control and the liberated territories.

“Naturally, what is behind, and what is there, along this line, it must be secured, these territories must be controlled. And, of course, first of all, this is what this work is being done for – I mean, partial mobilization,” Shoigu said.

He said that only one percent out of Russia’s 25 million-strong military reserve will be subject to partial mobilization. He specified that reserve servicemen who have military professions and combat experience will be mobilized, adding that this will not concern students.

Sergei Shoigu said that the Russian forces fully control the territory of the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR), partially control the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions, and added that they are advancing in the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR).

The LPR and the DPR as well as the Russian-held parts of the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions have announced they would hold referendums to join Russia from September 23-27.

The move was followed by President Putin signing a decree on the partial mobilization in Russia.

Address by the President of the Russian Federation

President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Friends,

The subject of this address is the situation in Donbass and the course of the special military operation to liberate it from the neo-Nazi regime, which seized power in Ukraine in 2014 as the result of an armed state coup.

Today I am addressing you – all citizens of our country, people of different generations, ages and ethnicities, the people of our great Motherland, all who are united by the great historical Russia, soldiers, officers and volunteers who are fighting on the frontline and doing their combat duty, our brothers and sisters in the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics, Kherson and Zaporozhye regions and other areas that have been liberated from the neo-Nazi regime.

The issue concerns the necessary, imperative measures to protect the sovereignty, security and territorial integrity of Russia and support the desire and will of our compatriots to choose their future independently, and the aggressive policy of some Western elites, who are doing their utmost to preserve their domination and with this aim in view are trying to block and suppress any sovereign and independent development centres in order to continue to aggressively force their will and pseudo-values on other countries and nations.

See also

Executive Order on partial mobilisation in the Russian Federation

September 21, 2022

The goal of that part of the West is to weaken, divide and ultimately destroy our country. They are saying openly now that in 1991 they managed to split up the Soviet Union and now is the time to do the same to Russia, which must be divided into numerous regions that would be at deadly feud with each other.

They devised these plans long ago. They encouraged groups of international terrorists in the Caucasus and moved NATO’s offensive infrastructure close to our borders. They used indiscriminate Russophobia as a weapon, including by nurturing the hatred of Russia for decades, primarily in Ukraine, which was designed to become an anti-Russia bridgehead. They turned the Ukrainian people into cannon fodder and pushed them into a war with Russia, which they unleashed back in 2014. They used the army against civilians and organised a genocide, blockade and terror against those who refused to recognise the government that was created in Ukraine as the result of a state coup.

After the Kiev regime publicly refused to settle the issue of Donbass peacefully and went as far as to announce its ambition to possess nuclear weapons, it became clear that a new offensive in Donbass – there were two of them before – was inevitable, and that it would be inevitably followed by an attack on Russia’s Crimea, that is, on Russia.

In this connection, the decision to start a pre-emptive military operation was necessary and the only option. The main goal of this operation, which is to liberate the whole of Donbass, remains unaltered.

The Lugansk People’s Republic has been liberated from the neo-Nazis almost completely. Fighting in the Donetsk People’s Republic continues. Over the previous eight years, the Kiev occupation regime created a deeply echeloned line of permanent defences. A head-on attack against them would have led to heavy losses, which is why our units, as well as the forces of the Donbass republics, are acting competently and systematically, using military equipment and saving lives, moving step by step to liberate Donbass, purge cities and towns of the neo-Nazis, and help the people whom the Kiev regime turned into hostages and human shields.

As you know, professional military personnel serving under contract are taking part in the special military operation. Fighting side by side with them are volunteer units – people of different ethnicities, professions and ages who are real patriots. They answered the call of their hearts to rise up in defence of Russia and Donbass.

In this connection, I have already issued instructions for the Government and the Defence Ministry to determine the legal status of volunteers and personnel of the military units of the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics. It must be the same as the status of military professionals of the Russian army, including material, medical and social benefits. Special attention must be given to organising the supply of military and other equipment for volunteer units and Donbass people’s militia.

While acting to attain the main goals of defending Donbass in accordance with the plans and decisions of the Defence Ministry and the General Staff, our troops have liberated considerable areas in the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions and a number of other areas. This has created a protracted line of contact that is over 1,000 kilometres long.

This is what I would like to make public for the first time today. After the start of the special military operation, in particular after the Istanbul talks, Kiev representatives voiced quite a positive response to our proposals. These proposals concerned above all ensuring Russia’s security and interests. But a peaceful settlement obviously did not suit the West, which is why, after certain compromises were coordinated, Kiev was actually ordered to wreck all these agreements.

More weapons were pumped into Ukraine. The Kiev regime brought into play new groups of foreign mercenaries and nationalists, military units trained according to NATO standards and receiving orders from Western advisers.

At the same time, the regime of reprisals throughout Ukraine against their own citizens, established immediately after the armed coup in 2014, was harshly intensified. The policy of intimidation, terror and violence is taking on increasingly mass-scale, horrific and barbaric forms.

I want to stress the following. We know that the majority of people living in the territories liberated from the neo-Nazis, and these are primarily the historical lands of Novorossiya, do not want to live under the yoke of the neo-Nazi regime. People in the Zaporozhye and Kherson regions, in Lugansk and Donetsk saw and are seeing now the atrocities perpetrated by the neo-Nazis in the [Ukrainian-] occupied areas of the Kharkov region. The descendants of Banderites and members of Nazi punitive expeditions are killing, torturing and imprisoning people; they are settling scores, beating up, and committing outrages on peaceful civilians.

There were over 7.5 million people living in the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics and in the Zaporozhye and Kherson regions before the outbreak of hostilities. Many of them were forced to become refugees and leave their homes. Those who have stayed – they number about five million – are now exposed to artillery and missile attacks launched by the neo-Nazi militants, who fire at hospitals and schools and stage terrorist attacks against peaceful civilians.

We cannot, we have no moral right to let our kin and kith be torn to pieces by butchers; we cannot but respond to their sincere striving to decide their destiny on their own.

The parliaments of the Donbass people’s republics and the military-civilian administrations of the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions have adopted decisions to hold referendums on the future of their territories and have appealed to Russia to support this.

I would like to emphasise that we will do everything necessary to create safe conditions for these referendums so that people can express their will. And we will support the choice of future made by the majority of people in the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics and the Zaporozhye and Kherson regions.

Friends,

Today our armed forces, as I have mentioned, are fighting on the line of contact that is over 1,000 kilometres long, fighting not only against neo-Nazi units but actually the entire military machine of the collective West.

In this situation, I consider it necessary to take the following decision, which is fully adequate to the threats we are facing. More precisely, I find it necessary to support the proposal of the Defence Ministry and the General Staff on partial mobilisation in the Russian Federation to defend our Motherland and its sovereignty and territorial integrity, and to ensure the safety of our people and people in the liberated territories.

As I have said, we are talking about partial mobilisation. In other words, only military reservists, primarily those who served in the armed forces and have specific military occupational specialties and corresponding experience, will be called up.

Before being sent to their units, those called up for active duty will undergo mandatory additional military training based on the experience of the special military operation.

I have already signed Executive Order on partial mobilisation.

In accordance with legislation, the houses of the Federal Assembly – the Federation Council and the State Duma – will be officially notified about this in writing today.

The mobilisation will begin today, September 21. I am instructing the heads of the regions to provide the necessary assistance to the work of military recruitment offices.

I would like to point out that the citizens of Russia called up in accordance with the mobilisation order will have the status, payments and all social benefits of military personnel serving under contract.

Additionally, the Executive Order on partial mobilisation also stipulates additional measures for the fulfilment of the state defence order. The heads of defence industry enterprises will be directly responsible for attaining the goals of increasing the production of weapons and military equipment and using additional production facilities for this purpose. At the same time, the Government must address without any delay all aspects of material, resource and financial support for our defence enterprises.

Friends,

The West has gone too far in its aggressive anti-Russia policy, making endless threats to our country and people. Some irresponsible Western politicians are doing more than just speak about their plans to organise the delivery of long-range offensive weapons to Ukraine, which could be used to deliver strikes at Crimea and other Russian regions.

Such terrorist attacks, including with the use of Western weapons, are being delivered at border areas in the Belgorod and Kursk regions. NATO is conducting reconnaissance through Russia’s southern regions in real time and with the use of modern systems, aircraft, vessels, satellites and strategic drones.

Washington, London and Brussels are openly encouraging Kiev to move the hostilities to our territory. They openly say that Russia must be defeated on the battlefield by any means, and subsequently deprived of political, economic, cultural and any other sovereignty and ransacked.

They have even resorted to the nuclear blackmail. I am referring not only to the Western-encouraged shelling of the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant, which poses a threat of a nuclear disaster, but also to the statements made by some high-ranking representatives of the leading NATO countries on the possibility and admissibility of using weapons of mass destruction – nuclear weapons – against Russia.

I would like to remind those who make such statements regarding Russia that our country has different types of weapons as well, and some of them are more modern than the weapons NATO countries have. In the event of a threat to the territorial integrity of our country and to defend Russia and our people, we will certainly make use of all weapon systems available to us. This is not a bluff.

The citizens of Russia can rest assured that the territorial integrity of our Motherland, our independence and freedom will be defended – I repeat – by all the systems available to us. Those who are using nuclear blackmail against us should know that the wind rose can turn around.

It is our historical tradition and the destiny of our nation to stop those who are keen on global domination and threaten to split up and enslave our Motherland. Rest assured that we will do it this time as well.

I believe in your support.