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PufPuf23

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Home country: USA
Member since: Thu Jul 26, 2007, 04:26 PM
Number of posts: 7,091

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How does the increase in use of cheap Colombian coal in the USA and northern Europe relate

to the transition from coal to natural gas?

The cheap coal extends the life of existing coal plants.

Hillary Clinton (and Bill Clinton before) and POTUS Obama (and one would suppose the Bushes and GOP) support Plan Colombia, US militarization of Colombia, and Colombia Free Trade.

Agree that environmental policy is complex and nuanced.

The NRDC Action Fund (and NRDC itself) are not the same as the 1970s and 1980s NRDC; the NRDC and affiliates have become corporate friendly (and to be cynical are buying future access with this endorsement - not likely to have been made by their more "pure" than the NRDC of the 1970s and 1980s.

Please look and respond to my other posts in this thread.

Note that Plan Colombia - part of neo-con plan for global dominance -

was put into place under Bill Clinton.

Prior to GWB, military base contracts were obtained for Soto Cano airbase in Honduras, Manta Airbase in Ecuador, and FOLs on Curacao and Aruba in the Dutch Antilles directly off the coast of Venezuela. The Manta base has been closed because an American contractor bomber FARC hostage negotiators from France and Venezuela within Ecuador. The Aruba FOL is inactive but improvements but facilities build and improvements made (air strip lengthened for fighters and bombers) and the contract with the Dutch is still in place. The Arubans did not like the FOL as early on rather than DEA and customs, US contractors sent F-15s to bomb FARC-led resistance to the Drummond railroad. Aruba operations were shifted to Curacao which was expanded.

Under POTUS Obama the USA entered contract relations for seven military bases within Colombia in support of Plan Colombia and the free trade agreement.



More about Soto Cano.

http://www.militarybases.us/air-force/soto-cano-air-base/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soto_Cano_Air_Base

Soto Cano Air Base (commonly known as Palmerola Air Base) is a Honduran military base 5 mi (8.0 km) to the south of Comayagua in Honduras. It houses between 500-600 US troops and is also used by the Honduran Air Force academy.[2][3] The airbase became operational in 1981, changing the old location of the Honduras Air Force Academy in Toncontin, Tegucigalpa to Palmerola.[4]

The US government once used Palmerola as a base of operations to support its foreign policy objectives in the 1980s. Now the US military uses Soto Cano as a launching point for counter-narcotics missions in Central America as well as humanitarian aid missions throughout Honduras and Central America.[3]

In 1990 Honduran President Rafael Leonardo Callejas decreed that commercial cargo flights were authorized to operate from Soto Cano. In 2008 President Manuel Zelaya announced that commercial flights would begin at Palmerola within a period of 60 days, after a crash at Toncontín International Airport which resulted in 5 deaths was blamed on the runway being too short at Toncontín.[7] Following an investigation into the incident, Pilot error was found to be the main cause. The military was placed in charge of building a civilian air terminal with funding from the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (enabled by emergency decrees). This however was cancelled after Zelaya was removed from office on June 28, 2009 in the 2009 Honduran coup d'état.[8] The airport authority and the government of Honduras resumed airport relocation talks in April 2011 and announced that work on the new Palmerola airport would start by the fall of 2011 after years of efforts to replace Toncontín International with an airport at Palmerola in Comayagua where the Soto Cano Air Base is located.[9] However, in a September 25, 2011 update, President Lobo stated officials were still "evaluating the pros and cons" of constructing the new airport.[10] This comes three years after former President Manuel Zelaya had announced that all commercial flights would be transferred to Soto Cano Air Base; however, work on the new terminal at Soto Cano was then cancelled after Zelaya was removed from office on 28 June 2009 in the 2009 Honduran coup d'état.[11]

The Colombia Free Trade legislation supports continued use of coal and

has other less than progressive effects as well.

Drummond Coal is based in Alabama and has closed all but one union domestic coal mine (slated for closure) because of the purchase and operation of one of the world's largest coal mines in Colombia that started operations in 1995, The union coal that once fueled power generation for Alabama Power is now fueled by cheap Colombia coal. Drummond is the 5th largest coal exporter in the world thanks to Colombia coal. Drummond built a railroad and transport facility in Colombia and has been implicated in the funding of paramilitaries and murder of trade unionists and native peoples in Colombia, there have been prosecutions but no convictions to date. Drummond has been convicted and paid fines for environmental problems in Colombia as there is local resistance even from Colombia establishment, not just workers and poor that live on impacted land.

Drummond operations are one of the biggest beneficiaries of the Colombia free trade legislation. Drummond is a private company that has sold 20% of the Colombia operations to the Chinese. Gary Drummond, majority owner, is the richest person in Alabama and a Bushite.

The cheap coal from Colombia provided by Drummond is sold in the USA to the South and northeast. The Drummond coal is not only cheap but also of good quality and relatively low polluting compared to most coal. The large amount of cheap coal provided by Drummond is keeping coal plants online and suppresses shifts to natural gas and cleaner, renewable energies like solar and wind. The costs of transition, the low cost coal, and the fact that Drummond's Colombia operations are still relatively young in growth cycle and still expanding indicate that the Colombia free trade legislation represents a long term commitment to coal. Drummond is also the largest exporter of coal to northern Europe and has started exports to China. When there is a railroad and export facilty ion the Pacific side one could expect a great increase in exports to China. The huge reserves, high quality, cheap labor, cheap transportation, and relatively lax environmental controls indicate Drummond's Colombia coal will be here for some time. The Colombia free trade legislation locks this in and Drummond is the largest corporation in financial gain.

Here is some background;

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Drummond

Drummond Ltd. describes itself as "principally engaged in the business of mining, purchasing, processing and selling of coal and coal derivatives."[1]

On its website it states that it "controls reserves totaling over 2 billion tons and shipped over 24 million tons of coal in 2006. Drummond primarily produces low sulfur or compliance coal, meeting Phase II requirements of the 1990 Amendments to the Clean Air Act." The company's current mining operations are in Alabama in the United States and its La Loma mine in Cesar Department in Colombia, serving customers in both the U.S. and Europe.[1]

A November 2007 presentation to investment analysts by the President of BHP Billiton Coal, Dave Murray, noted that Drummond had an 5% share of the global coal export trade, making it the equal fifth largest coal exporter in the world. (Drummond is equal with Shenhua).[2]



Contents [hide]
1 Company History
2 Colombian Coal

2.1 Conflict in Colombia
2.2 WikiLeaks cables regarding paramilitary forces
2.3 Coverup of coal barge sinking

3 Alabama coal 3.1 Alabama Coal port expansion

4 Political and Public Influence

4.1 Coal Execs Invite Presidential Hopeful Jeb Bush to Closed-Door Weekend Retreat (2015)
4.2 Political Contributions
4.3 Lobbying

5 Corporate Accountability

5.1 Labor
5.2 Human Rights

6 Protests against Drummond 6.1 July 2007: Protesters demand justice for murdered workers

http://www.platts.com/latest-news/coal/london/colombias-drummond-coal-exports-to-reach-28-mil-21576719

Colombia's Drummond coal exports to reach 28 mil mt in 2015: reports

Colombia's second largest thermal coal miner Drummond is to export 28 million mt in 2015, up from the previous year's 23.1 million mt, Drummond Colombia president Jose Miguel Linares said.

Speaking to journalists on Friday and as reported by various Colombian news outlets, Linares said the Fenoco nighttime rail ban, which affected shipments between February and November, cost the company between 4.5 million and 5.5 million mt of exports during the year.

However, if Fenoco railings continue unhindered in 2016, total exports are expected to reach 35 million mt, with output marginally lower than that, Linares said.

In a more detailed interview with Colombian financial daily La Republica, Linares said that assuming Colombian coal is priced at an average of $48/mt FOB, coal sales might be around $1.68 billion in 2016.

http://colombiareports.com/drummond-glencore-blood-coal/

Why Drummond and Glencore are accused of exporting Colombian blood coal (July 2, 2014)

The push to boycott “blood coal” exported from Colombia by Drummond and Glencore is gaining momentum in Europe after the publication of a report in which dozens of victims and victimizers testified that the multinational mining companies financed and promoted death squads.

MORE: Drummond, Glencore subsidiary financed paramilitaries in Colombia: Report

What is blood coal?

“Blood coal,” a reference to the infamous “blood diamonds” mined amid conflict conditions in Africa, is the term used by the PAX peace organization to refer to coal extracted from areas in Colombia where paramilitary violence has been particularly severe. “According to all the testimonies, the mining companies invited the paramilitaries to come over and start operations.”

According to the Dutch NGO, coal coming from the Colombian mines of the Glencore and Drummond multinationals has been stained by blood, as several members of the death squads guilty of an estimated 2,600 homicides in the areas surrounding their mining operations have testified their formation was supported and financed by the mining firms.

The report has already spurred a debate in the Dutch Parliament around the importation of Colombian coal. The NGO wants parliament to ban the trade of Colombian coal until the multinationals in question have implemented appropriate measures to guarantee the end of human rights violations related to mining and compensated victims of the violence they are accused of having financed.

A quarter of the small European country’s total coal imports is deemed “blood coal” by the NGO. In total, the Netherlands imported 15.4 million tons of coal from Colombia last year.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garry_N._Drummond

Garry N. Drummond, Sr. (born c. 1939) is an American heir, business executive and philanthropist from Alabama. He serves as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Drummond Company, a private coal company active in Alabama and Colombia.
Drummond Company[edit]

In 1961, Drummond joined the family business, the Drummond Company, a coal company active in Alabama.[2][5] He later served as its Chief Operating Officer.[2] He has served as its Chairman and Chief Executive Officer since 1973.[1][2][3] The company is active in coal-mining in Alabama and Colombia.[3]

In 1979-1980, with his brother Larry and another executive, Clyde Black, Drummond was indicted of bribing three Alabama legislators, by supplying them with prostitutes.[3][6][7][8] The trial lasted three months, but it was dismissed by Judge Frank McFadden; the record is now sealed.[3][6]

In the 1980s, Drummond began looking for coal in Colombia, even though the country was at war.[3] He established their first coal mine in 1995.[3] Shortly after, the FARC bombed the railway track which carried coal from the Drummond mine to their port off the Caribbean Sea.[3]

As of 2015, Forbes lists Drummond as the wealthiest individual in Alabama, with an estimated wealth of US$980 million


Based on history, I would expect Hillary Clinton to be a weak environmental POTUS.

Why? Fracking, big oil, Keystone, supporter of MIC, supporter of carbon offset credits, supporter of free trade deals

POTUS Obama has been weak on the environment regards to priority of the issue.

Stopping war is a most forward environmental initiative as there is nothing more damaging to the environment and wasteful of natural resources than war.

The major environmental groups that rose to prominence in the 1960s and 1970s have become corporatized and weak sauce but good careers for a few since peaking in effectiveness in the 1980s, this includes the Natural Resource Defense Council and its affiliate NRDC Action Fund. NRDC can no longer be described as a grass roots organization. NRDC focuses on politics and fund raising and is part of the status quo. I am not claiming that NRDC is a "bad" organization but that it is a mature organization subject to corporate capture and is not the same grass roots organization as when came to prominence. NRDC maintains access to politicians and corporations now by a willingness to be part of the system and stay within that box.

The wiki for NRDC mentions five court cases; three were progressive environmental initiatives in the 1970s and 1980s, the last two are from the 113th Congress and one could argue the nuance is more to protect specific corporate from grass roots interests.
Legislation

From wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_Resources_Defense_Council

NRDC opposed the Water Rights Protection Act (H.R. 3189; 113th Congress), a bill that would prevent federal agencies from requiring certain entities to relinquish their water rights to the United States in order to use public lands. According to opponents, the bill is too broad. They believe the bill "could also block federal fisheries agencies like the United States Fish and Wildlife Service from requiring flows that help salmon find fish ladders and safely pass over dams."

Proponents of the bill disagree with NRDC's stance on the bill, arguing that the current Federal policy defended by NRDC seeks to make users of public lands turn over water rights which in many cases they have paid state or local governments for. Operators of ski areas, ranchers, and farmers, and other users of public land say that the Federal policy defended by NRDC denies them rights to use water for which they have already paid, effectively denying them use of the land. The Water Rights Protection Act is supported by national ski area groups, the American Farm Bureau Federation, the National Association of Conservation Districts, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, the Family Farm Alliance, the National Water Resources Association, the Colorado River Conservation District, the Colorado Association of Conservation Districts, and other interests threatened by existing Federal water policy in the West which the NRDC is defending.

NRDC supported the EPS Service Parts Act of 2014 (H.R. 5057; 113th Congress), a bill that would exempt certain external power supplies from complying with standards set forth in a final rule published by the United States Department of Energy in February 2014. The United States House Committee on Energy and Commerce describes the bill as a bill that "provides regulatory relief by making a simple technical correction to the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act to exempt certain power supply (EPS) service and spare parts from federal efficiency standards."

Effect on administrative law

The NRDC has been involved in the following Supreme Court cases interpreting United States administrative law.
Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Corp. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., 435 U.S. 519 (1978), which held that courts could not impose additional procedural requirements on administrative agencies beyond that required by the agency's organic statute or the Administrative Procedure Act.
Chevron U.S.A., Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., 467 U.S. 837 (1984), which gave administrative agencies broad discretion to interpret statute to make policy changes if Congressional intent was unclear. Chevron is now the most-cited case in American case law, even more so than all the citations to famous decisions such as Marbury v. Madison, Brown v. Board of Education, and Roe v. Wade combined.
Baltimore Gas & Elec. Co. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., 462 U.S. 78 (1983) is a United States Supreme Court decision which held to be valid a Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) rule that the permanent storage of nuclear waste should be assumed to have no environmental impact during the licensing of nuclear power plants.


Regards the NRDC Action Fund:

http://www.nrdcactionfund.org/about/ and,

http://www.nrdcactionfund.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Action-Fund-FY14-PD-990.pdf

One should note that about 85% of NRDC Action Fund contributions go to pay W-2 salaries of between $175,000 and $422,000 and these same individuals each had between $35,000 to $63,000 of income from actions related to the NRDC but not NRDC Action Fund W-2 income.

Based on history, I would expect Hillary Clinton to be a weak environmental POTUS.

Why? Fracking, big oil, Keystone, supporter of MIC, supporter of carbon offset credits, supporter of free trade deals

POTUS Obama has been weak on the environment regards to priority of the issue.

Stopping war is a most forward environmental initiative as there is nothing more damaging to the environment and wasteful of natural resources than war.

The major environmental groups that rose to prominence in the 1960s and 1970s have become corporatized and weak sauce but good careers for a few since peaking in effectiveness in the 1980s, this includes the Natural Resource Defense Council and its affiliate NRDC Action Fund. NRDC can no longer be described as a grass roots organization. NRDC focuses on politics and fund raising and is part of the status quo. I am not claiming that NRDC is a "bad" organization but that it is a mature organization subject to corporate capture and is not the same grass roots organization as when came to prominence. NRDC maintains access to politicians and corporations now by a willingness to be part of the system and stay within that box.

The wiki for NRDC mentions five court cases; three were progressive environmental initiatives in the 1970s and 1980s, the last two are from the 113th Congress and one could argue the nuance is more to protect specific corporate from grass roots interests.
Legislation[edit]

From wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_Resources_Defense_Council

NRDC opposed the Water Rights Protection Act (H.R. 3189; 113th Congress), a bill that would prevent federal agencies from requiring certain entities to relinquish their water rights to the United States in order to use public lands.[18][19] According to opponents, the bill is too broad.[19][20] They believe the bill "could also block federal fisheries agencies like the United States Fish and Wildlife Service from requiring flows that help salmon find fish ladders and safely pass over dams."[19]

Proponents of the bill disagree with NRDC's stance on the bill, arguing that the current Federal policy defended by NRDC seeks to make users of public lands turn over water rights which in many cases they have paid state or local governments for. Operators of ski areas, ranchers, and farmers, and other users of public land say that the Federal policy defended by NRDC denies them rights to use water for which they have already paid, effectively denying them use of the land. The Water Rights Protection Act is supported by national ski area groups, the American Farm Bureau Federation, the National Association of Conservation Districts, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, the Family Farm Alliance, the National Water Resources Association, the Colorado River Conservation District, the Colorado Association of Conservation Districts, and other interests threatened by existing Federal water policy in the West which the NRDC is defending.[21]

NRDC supported the EPS Service Parts Act of 2014 (H.R. 5057; 113th Congress), a bill that would exempt certain external power supplies from complying with standards set forth in a final rule published by the United States Department of Energy in February 2014.[22][23] The United States House Committee on Energy and Commerce describes the bill as a bill that "provides regulatory relief by making a simple technical correction to the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act to exempt certain power supply (EPS) service and spare parts from federal efficiency standards."[24]

Effect on administrative law

The NRDC has been involved in the following Supreme Court cases interpreting United States administrative law.
Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Corp. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., 435 U.S. 519 (1978), which held that courts could not impose additional procedural requirements on administrative agencies beyond that required by the agency's organic statute or the Administrative Procedure Act.
Chevron U.S.A., Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., 467 U.S. 837 (1984), which gave administrative agencies broad discretion to interpret statute to make policy changes if Congressional intent was unclear. Chevron is now the most-cited case in American case law, even more so than all the citations to famous decisions such as Marbury v. Madison, Brown v. Board of Education, and Roe v. Wade combined.[25]
Baltimore Gas & Elec. Co. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., 462 U.S. 78 (1983)[26] is a United States Supreme Court decision which held to be valid a Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) rule that the permanent storage of nuclear waste should be assumed to have no environmental impact during the licensing of nuclear power plants.


Regards the NRDC Action Fund:

http://www.nrdcactionfund.org/about/ and,

http://www.nrdcactionfund.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Action-Fund-FY14-PD-990.pdf

One should note that about 85% of NRDC Action Fund contributions go to pay W-2 salaries of between $175,000 and $422,000 and these same individuals each had between $35,000 to $63,000 of income from actions related to the NRDC but not NRDC Action Fund W-2 income.

Drummond Coal based in AL, large coal mines in Colombia

Drummond Coal was founded in 1935 and is still based in AL. Drummond coal is privately owned but has sold 20% of Colombia operations to a Chinese company.

DC was one of the largest domestic coal producers until buying coal mines in Colombia in the 1990s. A port and railroad was developed to serve the Colombia mines, one of which is the largest coal mine in Colombia and alone produces about 5% of the global coal export trade. DC is the 5th largest coal exporter in the world. Colombian coal is burned in AL Power and other southern coal plants, replacing historic domestic mines and union labor.

DC had operated a number of union coal mines in AL and later a large coal mine in WY. All except one small mine in AL have been closed and replaced with the Colombian coal from two large mines (that is also sold to Europe).

DC developed a coal export facility and railroad in Colombia. The railroad was bombed by FARC.

The cheap and high quality coal from Colombia now burned in the southeastern USA retards the conversion to natural gas and renewable energy from solar and wind because of the low cost coal.

There has been violence and murders against native peoples and trade unionists in Colombia for actions post 9 / 11 but prosecution failed.

There was a large dump of raw coal in the Caribbean in 2003 that DC tried to cover up and ultimately was fined.

Read these links and you will not be happy as to one now trans-national that benefits from the Colombia free trade agreement:

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Drummond

1 Company History
2 Colombian Coal 2.1 Conflict in Colombia
2.2 WikiLeaks cables regarding paramilitary forces
2.3 Coverup of coal barge sinking

3 Alabama coal 3.1 Alabama Coal port expansion

4 Political and Public Influence 4.1 Coal Execs Invite Presidential Hopeful Jeb Bush to Closed-Door Weekend Retreat (2015)
4.2 Political Contributions
4.3 Lobbying

5 Corporate Accountability 5.1 Labor
5.2 Human Rights

6 Protests against Drummond 6.1 July 2007: Protesters demand justice for murdered workers

7 Contact Information
8 Articles and Resources 8.1 Sources
8.2 Related SourceWatch articles
8.3 External Articles



http://www.drummondco.com/about/history/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drummond_Company

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garry_N._Drummond

In 1979-1980, with his brother Larry and another executive, Clyde Black, Drummond was indicted of bribing three Alabama legislators, by supplying them with prostitutes.[3][6][7][8] The trial lasted three months, but it was dismissed by Judge Frank McFadden; the record is now sealed.[3][6]

In the 1980s, Drummond began looking for coal in Colombia, even though the country was at war.[3] He established their first coal mine in 1995.[3] Shortly after, the FARC bombed the railway track which carried coal from the Drummond mine to their port off the Caribbean Sea.[3]

Drummond made donations to Republican politicians such as Richard Shelby, Terry Everett, Robert Aderholt, Butch Otter, Mike Rogers, Jo Bonner, as well as to the 2004 re-election of President George W. Bush.[12] He also donated to Coalpac, a political action committee for the National Mining Association.[12] He also donated US$50,000 to Bob Riley's 2002 gubernatorial campaign.[13]

As of 2015, Forbes lists Drummond as the wealthiest individual in Alabama, with an estimated wealth of US$980 million.[1]

I was thinking about Mika on MSNBC.

I haven't lived with TV since 2011.

Liked to watch Olbermann and Maddow on MSNBC and often caught portions of JoeScar's show early in the AM more by circumstance.

I find the video below amusing and Brand thoughtful. Be sure to watch until the very end.

The MSNBC panel says that the folks at the PCs in the background are on twitter and facebook and are actors. Anyone from the show here at DU?

I wonder if Russell Brand writes his own material? Brand has written several books. I have never watched Brand except in internet clips and the Sarah Marshal movie and the film where he is an English rock star.

What about Hillary Clinton and the Ukraine? Hillary Clinton’s Ukraine Problem

Hillary Clinton as SOS was intimately involved with Ukraine as was The Clinton Foundation.

After Hillary Clinton was SOS there was the neo-conservative inspired Ukrainian Revolution that has brought Ukraine and the West to loggerheads with Russia and violence is sporadic but continuing, including a ramp up of military and rhetoric in adjacent and nearby Baltic and northern European nations.

Victoria Nuland is POTUS Obama's point person on the Ukraine as Asst. SOS. Her husband is Robert Kagan, the neo-con leader that speaks favorable Regards Hillary Clinton. Nuland has worked well in the past with Dick Cheney and in the Bill Clinton WH. One wonders what POTUS Obama was thinking in appointing Nuland Asst SOS. Nuland has furthered what Clinton started as SOS in Ukraine. When one looks at neo-conservative projects, it is important to note that the first initiation of a PNAC project was Plan Colombia during the second Bill Clinton term and that the Clintons have always worked better with neo-cons than other Democrats. I consider, as do many, Hillary Clinton a neo-conservative as well as a neo-liberal. There is a scandal regards to statements made by Nuland regards the European Union, our supposed allies.

http://www.progressivepress.net/hillary-clintons-ukraine-problem-2/

clip

What happened in Ukraine?

Hillary and Bill Clinton run the Clinton Foundation, established by the couple. The foundation accepts monetary donations from foreign donors, amassing to billions of dollars. Some of the top donors of the foundation were Ukrainian oligarchs. One of them, Victor Pinchuk, was a former member of the Ukrainian Parliament and a strong advocate of Neoliberalism in Ukraine. Pinchuk became wealthy during chaotic privatization of large state enterprises after the country’s separation from the Soviet Union.

clip

Stephen F. Cohen, an internationally prominent scholar of Russia, explains the reasons behind Clinton’s actions regarding Ukraine, during an interview organized by the American Committee for East West Accord Ltd. “This problem began in the 1990s, when the Clinton Administration adopted a winner-take-all policy toward post-Soviet Russia … Russia gives, we take. … This policy was adopted by the Clinton Administration but is pursued by every [meaning both] political party, every President, every American Congress, since President Clinton, to President Obama. This meant that the United States was entitled to a sphere or zone of influence as large as it wished, right up to Russia’s borders, and Russia was entitled to no sphere of influence, at all, not even in Georgia… or in Ukraine (with which Russia had been intermarried for centuries).”

Victoria Nuland, assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, who has been the lead U.S. point person for the Ukraine crisis was a deputy director for former Soviet Union affairs under the Bill Clinton administration. Nuland also served as Principal Deputy National Security Advisor to Vice President Cheney.

clip

Reader Supported News journalist Steve Weisman’s report on how the Clinton led State Department laid the foundation for the regime change in Ukraine is an eye opener. It is truly one of the best investigative reporting pieces of our time, beginning with the evidence on the so called “rebel” who started the “revolution” against the Viktor Yanukovych administration. A polyglot Afghan immigrant who happened to work as a journalist in the news channel established by, none other than, the US Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt. “Arriving in the Ukrainian capital on August 3 [2013], Pyatt almost immediately authorized a grant for an online television outlet called Hromadske.TV, which would prove essential to building the Euromaidan street demonstrations against Yanukovych.”

clip

About Victoria Nuland:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Victoria_Nuland

During the Bill Clinton administration, Nuland was chief of staff to Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott before moving on to serve as deputy director for former Soviet Union affairs. She served as the principal deputy foreign policy adviser to Vice President Dick Cheney and then as U.S. ambassador to NATO. Nuland became special envoy for Conventional Armed Forces in Europe and then became State Department spokesperson in summer 2011.[5]

She was nominated to serve as Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs in May 2013 and sworn in to fill that role in September 2013.[6] During her confirmation hearings, she faced "sharp questions" about a memo she had sent outlining the talking points that would be used by the Obama administration in the days shortly after the 2012 Benghazi attack.[7]

In her role as Assistant Secretary, she has been the lead U.S. point person for the Ukrainian crisis. She was a key figure in establishing loan guarantees to Ukraine, including a $1 billion loan guarantee in 2014, and the provisions of non-lethal assistance to the Ukrainian military and border guard.[8][9] Along with Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, she is seen as a leading supporter of defensive weapons delivery to Ukraine. In 2016 Nuland urged Ukraine to start prosecuting corrupt officials: "It's time to start locking up people who have ripped off the Ukrainian population for too long and it is time to eradicate the cancer of corruption".[10]

Disappointing result of Confederate flag poll on MSN.com


Poll Results

Should Confederate flag displays be allowed in cemeteries run by the VA?

21% No, they're symbols of hatred and bigotry

37% Yes, let individuals make that call

40% This issue is overblown

2% I’m not sure

Total responses: 148,982 votes

House OKs Confederate flag restrictions

Everyone should read this article from the 2008 Kentucky primary won by Hillary Clinton.

Context for the Kentucky primary today and also the 2016 campaign in general.

http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/05/20/primary.wrap/

Note the article is 5/20/2008. I recommend read the entire article, it is short.

Some excerpts:

Hillary Clinton won Kentucky by 30%

From the article:

Neither candidate is expected to reach the 2,026 delegates needed to win the Democratic nomination.

That means the race is likely to be settled by "super-delegates" -- party leaders and officials who will cast votes at the Democratic convention in August.

After Kentucky's results came in, Clinton thanked her supporters for handing her a win "even in the face of some pretty tough odds."

"Tonight we have achieved an important victory," she said in Louisville.

Clinton beat Obama across all age groups, income groups and education levels in Kentucky.

"It's not just Kentucky bluegrass that's music to my ears. It's the sound of your overwhelming vote of confidence even in the face of some pretty tough odds."

Two-thirds of Clinton's supporters there said they would vote Republican or not vote at all rather than for Obama, according to the polls.

Forty-one percent of Clinton supporters said they'd cast their vote for McCain, and 23 percent said they would not vote at all.

----------------------

Thanks again for the context XemaSab
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