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Ghost Dog

Profile Information

Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Canary Islands Archipelago
Home country: Spain
Member since: Wed Apr 19, 2006, 01:59 PM
Number of posts: 13,682

About Me

(Brit gone native).

Journal Archives

I'll be 60 in a few months' time. What's new this time around...

... is that both "evil empires"' politico-military-financial establishments appear to have been recently planning within the context of the idea that the use of (¡sólo la puntita!) so-called 'tactical' or 'mini-' nuclear weapons is conceivable without inevitably shortly thereafter going totally MAD.

Excellent.



... You’d have to be crazy to think that Russia was going to allow the Ukraine, including Crimea, to become part of NATO, and yes, that was the West’s (or rather, America’s) endgame. (The Europeans think the Americans are crazy to be baiting the bear like this. But the Europeans need Russian natural gas.) Russia is no longer the USSR. It is not an existential threat to the West, or even to Europe. It is a corrupt resource state with a big army and nukes which controls a lot of territory, but the idea that it would win a full-on conventional war with America is deranged. All the US is accomplishing here is driving Russia into the country which is actually a danger to American dominance: China...

... Putin thinks the US and the West are Russia’s enemies. He is not wrong...

... Now, Putin is only the most competent Russian leader since perhaps Peter the Great, enjoys greater popularity among his own people than Bush and Obama ever did put together, and is a respected statesman around the world, which, by the way, sees the US as the greatest threat to world peace. Putin's first great initiative, dictatorship of the law, transformed a once lawless Russia into a generally law-abiding state, though slightly too conservative and restrictive for some people's taste. His second great idea, sovereign democracy, made Russia almost completely impervious to Western attempts at political manipulation. Add to that his economic successes (Russians' incomes have doubled repeatedly while US incomes have stagnated) and his foreign policy successes (his government recently prevented a major conflict in Syria, then engineered a rapprochement between the West and Iran) and you can begin to see why he makes US State Department apparatchiks and assorted US neocons absolutely livid with rage. That kind of anger tends to be catchy, and so we find journalists and commentators in the US so wrapped up in their negative feelings towards Putin that they are neglecting to do their job, which is to inform people...

Far out.

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?



Download the original GCHQ .pdf from here: http://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/1021430/the-art-of-deception-training-for-a-new.pdf

"Should the English have a say on Scottish independence?" (Asks Roger Scruton).

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-26173128

In all the complex changes leading to the Scottish bid for independence the English have never been consulted. The process has been conducted as though we had no right to an opinion in the matter. It was all about Scotland, and how to respond to Scottish nationalism. ... When the Czechs and the Slovaks achieved their amicable divorce it was by mutual agreement between elected politicians. What is so different about Scotland, that it decides everything for itself? ...

<long snip>

... The effect of the Scottish Parliament ... was not only to ensure that the Scots would govern themselves, but also to make it more likely that they would continue to govern the English. The Labour Party did not want to lose those Scottish MPs, since it was thanks to them, and to the Scottish vote, that the Labour Party had achieved such a large majority in Westminster. Scots were disproportionately represented in the cabinets of both Blair and Brown. Tony Blair was born and partly educated in Scotland, and owed his position in the Labour hierarchy in part to the networks that had grown in that country.

Elections to the Scottish Parliament show that the Scots have shifted their allegiance from Labour to the SNP. But they still want the English to be governed by the Labour Party. Hence they vote to place Labour politicians, whom they don't particularly want at home, in Westminster.

As a result of this the English, who have voted Conservative more often than Labour in post-war elections, have to accept a block vote of Labour members of parliament sent to Westminster by the Scots. The process that brought this about was one in which the Scots themselves were given the final say, in a referendum from which the English were excluded. In other words the process of devolution can be seen as a piece of gerrymandering, the effect of which has been to secure a Labour bias in the Westminster Parliament, while allowing the Scots to govern themselves in whatever way they choose.

And the process continues. In response to Alex Salmond's bid for independence the people of Scotland have been granted another referendum. But again the people of England have been deprived of a say. Why is this? Are we part of the union or not? Or are the politicians afraid that we would vote the wrong way? And what is the wrong way? What way should we English vote, given that the present arrangement gives two votes to the Scots for every vote given to the English? Should we not vote for our independence, given that we risk being governed from a country that already regulates its own affairs, and has no clear commitment to ours? ...

<snip>

/Much More + many comments... http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-26173128

Meanwhile, at Asia's arms bazaar...

... Many of the uniformed officers from Asia's militaries who are visiting the biennial Singapore Airshow make a beeline for the aircraft.

For the most part, the Poseidon is a Boeing 737, the world's most commonly seen passenger jet. But first looks can be deceiving - this plane can be fitted with torpedoes, depth charges and anti-ship missiles. Inside are packed some of the world's most advanced avionics, radars and sensors, making it the only long-range marine patrol aircraft that can hunt and destroy submarines.

"When you want the best long-range anti-submarine warfare aircraft in that class, we have the product that's most developed," said Chris Raymond, an executive vice president in Boeing's defence, space and security division.

Defence analysts say maritime surveillance is the most pressing security need in East and Southeast Asia, made up of predominantly littoral states. Rival maritime claims that have pitted China, which has one of the world's fastest growing militaries, against Japan and other Asian nations have made the South and East China Seas dangerous flashpoints.

Piracy and smuggling are also rife in the region. And natural disasters strike with depressing regularity, leading to a need for search and rescue aircraft.

"Maritime patrol is the buzzword at the moment, especially in Singapore," said Gareth Jennings, an aviation expert at IHS Jane's...

/... http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/02/12/uk-airshow-singapore-defence-surveillanc-idUKBREA1B04F20140212

... and "capitalism’s inherent dynamic ... threatens democratic societies":

Nothing new about these propositions for what I'd call the 'anarchist' left.

... Now define more clearly what a 'democratic society' should or could look like...

So Hagel specifies Iran, huh. More general phrasing here:

http://www.stripes.com/news/uss-donald-cook-heads-to-rota-as-part-of-missile-shield-1.264891
Published: January 31, 2014

The first of four U.S. Navy destroyers to form the centerpiece of Europe’s missile defense shield departed the U.S. East Coast on Friday for its new home port in southern Spain.

Plans call for the USS Donald Cook to be joined by three more Arleigh Burke-class missile-guided destroyers, which carry the Aegis weapon system, in the coming two years. All are to be stationed at the U.S. Navy base in Rota, Spain, on the Atlantic coast north of Gibraltar.

Other pieces of the missile defense shield, known as the European Phased Adaptive Approach, include land-based Aegis interceptor batteries in Romania and Poland, radar in Turkey and a command center at the U.S. Air Force base in Ramstein, Germany.

The plan has caused a major rift with Russia, which says the shield is aimed against its own nuclear missile arsenal. The U.S. and its NATO allies insist the defense system is to meant to protect Europe from potentially hostile countries in the region, such as Iran.

The destroyer detachment expands the Navy presence in Europe at a time when other services are drawing down across the continent. It follows the Navy’s current emphasis on forward deployment, or having ships stationed closer to areas of interest...

/... http://www.stripes.com/news/uss-donald-cook-heads-to-rota-as-part-of-missile-shield-1.264891


... I wonder how much Spain gets paid for the use of Rota, air and naval...¿?

Mmmm...



Err...



Huh.



Ujjfff.



Oh, fuck.



Vale.

Let the UN have teeth. Let it tax and spend,

conjoin and coerce, reward and punish.

But make it respond to bottom-up, directly participatory democratic social forces.

Would you go for a French-style Republic?

ie. with an all-but plenipotentiary President?

Or for more of an Italian, say, model, where the President merely attempts to maintain some kind of order?
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