Tag Archive | Europe

If NATO Wants Peace and Stability it Should Stay Home*

If NATO Wants Peace and Stability it Should Stay Home*

By Ulson Gunnar

A curious op-ed appeared in The National Interest, penned by Hans Binnendijk and David Gompert, adjunct senior fellows at the RAND Corporation. Titled, “NATO’s Role in post-Caliphate Stability Operations,” it attempts to make a case for NATO involvement everywhere from Libya to Syria and Iraq in fostering stability in the wake of a yet-to-be defeated Islamic State.

The authors propose that NATO step in to fill what it calls an impending “vacuum left as the caliphate collapses,” heading off alternatives including “chaos or Iran, backed by Russia, filling the void, with great harm to U.S. and allied interests in either case.” The op-ed never explains why Iran, neighbouring Syria and Iraq, is less qualified to influence the region than the United States which exists literally oceans away and shares nothing in terms of history, culture, language or shared interests in stability and peace.

The op-ed would literally claim:

NATO is the only security organization with the skills and breadth to take on this task. The U.S.-led anti-Islamic State coalition of 68 partners is ill equipped to engage in this complex task. A more cohesive organization such as NATO should lead, but in ways that allow continued Arab participation. A creative version of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) coalition could provide the answer.”

It was an interesting choice by the authors to showcase one of NATO’s most stupendous and continuing failures in Afghanistan with mention of the ISAF, a force that not only has failed to bring stability to the Central Asia nation in over a decade and a half of occupation, but has presided over the emergence of the Islamic State there where previously it had no presence.

The reality of what NATO is versus what The National Interest op-ed attempts to pass it off as, resembles more of a sales pitch for a shoddy product than a genuine attempt at geopolitical analysis or problem solving. But the truth goes deeper still.

NATO is a Global Wrecking Ball, It Cannot Create Stability 

The op-ed focuses primarily on proposing NATO roles for a post-Islamic State Libya, Iraq and Syria.

Libya is perhaps the most tragic of the three, with NATO having used direct military force in 2011 to topple the government of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi in support of known extremists passed off at the time by both NATO spokespeople and the US-European media as “moderate rebels.”

The predictable fallout from this military campaign was the collapse of Libya as a relatively stable and unified nation-state into warring factions. The instability became fertile grounds for extremism, with many of the groups backed by NATO evolving into what is now the “Islamic State.”

The National Interest op-ed also makes mention of “Arab participation.” It should be remembered that the most extreme factions fighting in Libya were not only aided by direct NATO military intervention, but were armed and funded by Persian Gulf dictatorships as well, including Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.

A similar pattern of sowing instability has unfolded in Syria, leading to, not averting the rise of the Islamic State.

And Iraq’s instability is a direct and lasting consequence of the US military invasion and occupation of 2003.

If nothing else, this exposes NATO and its members as a collective, global wrecking ball. Just as a wrecking ball cannot be used to construct a building on a vacant lot, NATO cannot be used to construct the conditions for stability across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).

Really Stopping the Islamic State Means Really Stopping Support for It

Ultimately, what the op-ed calls for is the permanent occupation of the three nations by NATO forces ranging from special forces in Libya to the formal occupation of Raqqa in Syria and Mosul in Iraq.

Interestingly, the op-ed suggests that the NATO occupation force in Syria should not only be used to combat the Islamic State, but to also deter “Syrian military thrusts,” referring to the armed forces of the actual and only legitimate government in Syria.

This last point exposes fully what NATO is really interested in, and what this sales pitch is really advertising. NATO is not in MENA to defeat the Islamic State, it is merely using the Islamic State as a pretext to project Western hegemony across the region.

The closing paragraph states:

This NATO strategy cannot, and should not be expected to, settle the Syrian civil war, bring ethnic and sectarian harmony to Iraq, or create an effective Libyan state. What it could do is create conditions of stability in which lasting solutions at least have a chance. It can do so only if the U.S. is ready to call upon NATO to join it in filling the post-ISIS void and for the European allies to answer that call.

Certainly, NATO’s presence in Syria, Iraq or Libya will not bring any sort of stability. NATO has proven its absolute inability to achieve this in its 16 year occupation of Afghanistan. Claiming NATO occupation will “create conditions of stability in which lasting solutions at least have a chance” is merely NATO’s way of ensuring no matter how the chaos it itself has created across MENA, it will hold a stake in the outcome if for no other reason because it has literally taken and occupies territory within the post-war region.

U.S. Army Sgt.Mark Phiffer stands guard duty near a burning oil well in the Rumaylah Oi Fields in Southern Iraq

It is interesting that the Islamic State rose in the wake of US-led, NATO-backed violence stretching from North Africa to Central Asia and only began to suffer setbacks upon greater and more direct Russian and Iranian intervention.

The bombing of Islamic State and Jabhat Al Nusra logistical lines emanating from NATO-member Turkey’s borders by Russian warplanes, for example, inevitably led to huge gains by the Syrian Arab Army including the eventual liberation of Aleppo, the containment of Idlib and a significant retraction of Islamic State-held territory in eastern Syria.

The torrent of supplies feeding Islamic State and other fronts of extremist militancy flowing from Turkey is the admitted result of Persian Gulf sponsorship, which in turn, serves as an intermediary for US and NATO support for what the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency called in 2012 (.pdf) a “Salafist principality.”

The specific purpose of this “Salafist principality,” admittedly backed by Persian Gulf dictatorships, Turkey and what the US DIA refers to as “the West,” was to “isolate the Syrian regime.”  Clearly then, were NATO genuinely interested in defeating the Islamic State and undoing the damage it has done, it would begin by withdrawing it and its allies’ own support of the terrorist organization in the first place.

In short, if NATO truly wants to create stability across MENA, it merely needs to stop intentionally sowing instability.

Of course, a unilateral military bloc intentionally sowing chaos across an entire region of the planet is doing so for a very specific purpose. It is the same purpose all hegemons throughout human history have sought to divide and destroy regions they cannot outright conquer. A destroyed competitor may not be as favorable as a conquered, controlled and exploited competitor, but is certainly preferable to a free and independent competitor contributing to a greater multipolar world order. NATO, by embedding itself amid the chaos it itself has created, as it has proven in Afghanistan, only ensures further chaos.

Within this chaos, NATO can ensure if its own membership cannot derive benefit from the region, no one else will. A call like that featured in The National Interest for NATO to bring “stability” to the MENA region stands in stark contrast to the reality that everywhere NATO goes, chaos not only follows, it stays indefinitely until NATO leaves.

The best thing NATO can do for stability across MENA is to leave.

Source*

Related Topics:

No Force on Earth can Compete with NATO and U.S.’ Drug Trafficking Business in Afghanistan*

Blacklisted, Smeared and Silenced for Exposing NATO Destabilization of Syria*

SAA Seizes 2 Shipments of NATO Weapons to Al Qaeda Near Damascus*

Jeremy Corbyn Accused of Being Russian “Collaborator” for Questioning NATO Troop Build-Up on Border*

NATO Auditor Who Discovered U.S. Funds ISIS Found Murdered*

1,000s March for Peace, against NATO in Berlin*

NATO the Formless Entity of the Cabal and the U.S*

U.S., NATO Deploy Troops to Russia in WWIII Build-up*

World Leaders Agree to Merge NATO and E.U.*

Hacked emails Confirms NATO tried to Start War between U.S. and Russia*

NATO Violates Pledge to ‘Not Station Permanent Combat Troops’ in E. Europe*

The West Remains Silent as NATO Member Supports Terrorists in Syria*

Europeans Launch New Anti- NATO War Campaign*

NATO Just Attempted to Invade Moldova, but were Thwarted by People’s Resistance*

Israel Accepts Invitation to Hold Permanent Mission at NATO’s HQ*

NATO Amassing Hostile Forces on Russia Borders not Seen Since the Invasion in 1941*

U.S./NATO Atrocities Against Libya

At the World Economic Forum-Africa Germany Pitched a Dubious New G20 Corporate Strategy*

At the World Economic Forum-Africa Germany Pitched a Dubious New G20 Corporate Strategy*

By Patrick Bond

Last week’s World Economic Forum (WEF)-Africa conference in Durban hosted some of the world’s most controversial politicians: not just Jacob Zuma and his finance minister Malusi Gigaba plus regional dictators Robert Mugabe, Yoweri Museveni, King Mswati and Edgar Lungu, but also the most powerful man in Europe, the notoriously-corrupt neoliberal German finance minister, Wolfgang Schäuble.

At a public lecture last Thursday hosted by the University of KwaZulu-Natal, Schäuble undiplomatically threatened Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May, in the midst of her election campaign: “The [Brexit] negotiations will become terribly difficult for the U.K. They will see it.”

The next day at the WEF-Africa summit, Schäuble sold his plan for reviving multinational corporate investment in Africa. It is a priority, he said, because “In Europe, we have come to understand that Africa represents one of the most important issues for the growth and stability of the global economy.”

Africa as an ‘issue’ for global economic ‘growth’ – managed by imperialist elites – dates to an earlier Berlin project: the infamous “Scramble for Africa” in 1884-85. The continent’s dysfunctional borders were drawn then, with nary an African in sight, in order to facilitate property rights for colonial extractive industries, all the better to ensure infrastructure investment. Roads, railways, bridges and ports needed to withdraw resources have been cemented into place ever since, and now require refurbishing and expansion.

In addition to imperialist aspirations, another explanation arises: Germany’s national election is in September. Schäuble’s boss Angela Merkel needs a rhetorical device to explain to voters how the million African refugees who entered Germany over the last dozen years can be kept at bay in future. Hence the ‘Compact’ with African elites.

Schäuble was speaking on behalf of a G20 bloc that will hold its annual meeting in Hamburg in two months’ time. Amongst the world’s largest economies plus multilateral financial institutions, South Africa – with only the 3rd largest African economy and sixth most populous society – represents a continent glaringly absent from view.

The ‘C20’ group of civil society critics (within which I find myself occasionally) has expressed concern not only about Schäuble’s top-down process, but about “higher costs for the citizens, worse service, secrecy, loss of democratic influence and financial risks for the public… … and the multinational corporations involved demand that their profits be repatriated in hard currency – even though the typical services contract entails local-currency expenditures and revenues – and that often raises African foreign debt levels, which are now at all-time highs again in many countries.”

In contrast to Berlin, Donald Trump’s Washington regime has proposed cutting the USAID budget dramatically and diverting$54 billion in state funding to the military. But while once preaching isolationism, Trump has already expanded hectic albeit low-profile “Africa Command” interventions from the Maghreb across the Sahel to the Horn, according to researcher Nick Turse who last week analysed newly-declassified Pentagon data.

On June 12-13, more Compact details will be shared with G20 finance ministers at a Berlin meeting reportedly to be co-chaired by Schäuble and Gigaba. In spite of the latter’s occasional leftist rhetoric and widespread praise for his WEF-Africa diplomacy, Gigaba’s record of white-elephant infrastructure promotion when he was State Enterprises minister suggests how prone Pretoria remains to offering massive public subsidies to construction and mining corporations. That tendency overlaps precisely with Schäuble’s aims.

In addition to South Africa, five countries have initially signed up to the Compact with Africa – Côte d’Ivoire, Morocco, Rwanda,Senegal and Tunisia – with many more anticipated to join, so as to maintain aid and political favour with the European Union.

Schäuble’s Compact was released in March in the German resort of Baden-Baden without substantive African input (in contrast to Tony Blair’s 2004-05 Commission for Africa which coopted a comprador elite including Finance Minister Trevor Manuel). Schäuble  not only sidelined the more generous ‘Marshall Plan’ strategy advanced by Merkel’s development ministry, he also insisted that African governments provide more public subsidies – and take on much more risk – for ‘Public Private Partnership’ infrastructure. This typically amount to profits, pilfering and – for consumers of commercialised infrastructure – pain.

In his new autobiography and a Guardian article last week, former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis described Schäuble as a hypocritical financial dictator who privately confessed that his ongoing squeeze of the Syriza government and Greek people – on behalf of the Euro – should really have been rejected by Athens. The very day Schäuble spoke in Durban, he was also busy imposing more austerity on Greece and rejecting a previously promised bail-out.

Varoufakis regrets trusting Europe’s “Deep Establishment” in 2015, and indeed he should have known better. Fifteen years earlier Schäuble had been expelled as leader of the Conservative Party for accepting and then publicly denying a cash bribe – the equivalent of $60 000 – from arms dealer Karlheinz Schreiber (whose generosity also wrecked the once-invincible Helmut Kohl’s reputation.) A comeback thanks to Angela Merkel’s generosity gave Schäuble first the German Home Affairs and then Finance portfolios.

Likewise, IMF managing director Christine Lagarde is a close Schäuble collaborator and endorser of the Compact with Africa. Less than six months ago, she too was convicted in French courts for a €403 million payout to a major conservative party contributor, Adidas owner Bernard Tapie, when she was finance minister. Her comeback was far faster than Schäuble’s: she continues in her present job, even gaining a re-endorsement on the day of her Paris conviction by IMF directors including those representing the Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa bloc.

Meanwhile African infrastructure has failed to attract anywhere near the investment in the manner envisaged in the African Development Bank 2010 Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa and the wildly overoptimistic 2012 Southern Africa Development Community regional master plan.

But this not only a function of weak local systems – including widespread corruption in Africa’s construction sector – but another factor for which Schäuble, Lagarde and other elite financial managers are partly responsible: an utterly unreformed, chaotic world economic system.  Africa faced commodity price hikes of 380% from 2002-11 and then crashes by more than 50% in 2014-15, to unprofitable levels. And no Compact with Africa aiming to incentivise multinational corporate investment merely with state supply-side subsidies can reverse those inherent crisis conditions within global capitalism.
Source*

Related Topics:

Declaration of the South African Federation of Trade Unions*

World Bank Funds some of Africa’s most Notorious Land Grabs*

Leaked Trump Presidential Memo Would Free U.S. Companies to Buy Conflict Minerals from Central African Warlords*

Apartheid 2017 Still Kicking in S. Africa *

Should a Country Like France Be Indicting African Leaders?

Netanyahu Boasts of Israel’s War on Africans*

BP, Trafigura and Vitol Export Dirty Oil to Africa to Kill People*

French Draft Resolution on Syria Reflects its Longing for its Colonial History in Africa*

U.S. Military is Building a $100mn Drone Base in Africa*

French Terrorists Dispatched to Sub-Saharan Africa*

E.U. Bullies its Way through an Reciprocal Trade Access in Africa*

Hiding Africa’s Looted Funds and the Silence of Western Media*

ICA Finally Admits World Map is a Propaganda Tool for Power, Western Cartographers Deliberately Shrunk Africa*

Rothschild Billion Dollar Money Laundering Plot in Africa*

“U.S. Destroyed Libya to re-colonize Africa”*

Offshore Firm Helped Billionaires Plunder Africa*

New Colonial Carve-up of Africa? British firms vying for £1trn Natural Resources*

The Case for Reparations to Africa: Britain Apology is Cheap*

Embedding Transnational Agribusiness and GMO’s into African Agriculture*

Saudi Arabia Switching to BRICS in Response to U.S. Congress 9/11 Blackmail*

Saudi Arabia Switching to BRICS in Response to U.S. Congress 9/11 Blackmail*

After realizing that the U.S. Congress’s move to allow the filing of charges against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for its supposed role in the “terrorist” attack on New York in 2001 could be Washington DC’s way of putting the House of Saud on notice — that it, too, is not exempt from its two-faced foreign policy, and could be a future target for a regime change once it ceases to be a willing subject to systematic extortion, like what’s being done with Japan for decades right after the Second World War, the House of Saud continues to engage Russia for a possible common ground.

Russia is responding positively to the Saudi initiative, and already the two are defying the pressure from the latter’s long-time “ally.”

Russia Calling the Shots on ‘American Playground’ in Middle East

Sputnik / Evgeniya Novozhenova

Russia continues to develop relations with Saudi Arabia, Washington’s longstanding ally in the Middle East. In addition to the ongoing cooperation in the energy sphere, the two countries are expected to launch lucrative investment projects and probably start working together in the defense sector.

Russia continues to compete with Washington on the U.S.’ traditional “playground” in the Middle East.

On April 6, the Russian Foreign Ministry made an important statement on the Palestinian-Israeli settlement, recognizing East Jerusalem as the capital of the future Palestinian state and West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Commenting on the issue, Israeli political analyst Avigdor Eskin told Sputnik that Russia has surpassed the U.S. by recognizing West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

“The current statement regarding the recognition of West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel reflects a warm and friendly atmosphere [between Russia and Israel]. This is highly appreciated,” the Israeli political analyst underscored.

“Russia is much closer to the region and has a deeper understanding of the situation. If Trump remains ‘under siege’ and doesn’t prevail for the rest of his term, we might expect a stronger Russian influence,” Eskin predicted.

But that is not all.

On Monday a Russian parliamentary delegation, headed by Federation Council Chair Valentina Matvienko, concluded its visit to Saudi Arabia, Washington’s other key ally in the Middle East.

Assessing the results of the summit, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said that contacts between Moscow and Riyadh are expanding at various levels.

“Indeed, there is a deepening of mutual understanding between our countries; contacts are taking place at all levels,” he said during a meeting with the head of The King Salman Centre for Humanitarian Aid and Relief.

As expected, the cooperation in the oil and gas spheres had become the centerpiece of the negotiations between Russia and Saudi Arabia. Moscow and Riyadh continue to take steps to reduce oil production to balance the market.

The countries have fully complied with all their obligations under the agreement between OPEC and other oil-producing countries.

“Russia and Saudi Arabia acted as guarantors of the implementation of this agreement, and I am sure that this cooperation will continue, because no one is interested in a chaotic development of events [in the oil market],” Matvienko said, as quoted by RIA Novosti.

Interestingly enough, following the oil price slump, there was speculation that Washington had persuaded Riyadh to dump prices to spite Russia. However, Moscow and Riyadh are currently successfully working together to establish an equitable pricing strategy in the energy market.

Furthermore, although Riyadh remains close to the U.S., the Kingdom didn’t support anti-Russian sanctions imposed by other Washington’s allies, including Japan, Australia, New Zealand and Canada.

In addition, the Russians and their Saudi counterparts discussed the prospect of cooperating in the defense sector. While the details of the talks have yet to be disclosed, it is known that in late 2016, Saudi Arabia showed interest in potentially purchasing Russian S-400 Triumf air defense systems.

“This has been stated by Saudi Arabian representatives themselves when they visited multiple exhibitions, presentations and shows where Russia showcased these systems, such as the exhibition in Abu Dhabi [the International Defense Exhibition and Conference, IDEX]and events organized in Russia, so there is nothing new here, there is an interest,” Russian Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Oleg Ozerov told Sputnik in early November 2016.

In February 2017 Industry and Trade Minister of Russia Denis Manturov confirmed that Russia and Saudi Arabia were discussing Riyad’s prospects for acquiring Russian military aircraft and “land weapons.”

It is no secret that Washington has long been Riyadh’s key arms provider and the country boasts an annual defense budget second to only that of the United States and China. Recent developments show that Russia is beginning to compete with the U.S. for the Kingdom’s lucrative military contracts.

Meanwhile, Matvienko revealed that the Russian Direct Investment Fund and the Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund will launch joint projects worth $3 billion before the end of this year.

“The Russian Direct Investment Fund and the Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund are cooperating successfully. Thanks to them, projects worth some $600 million have been implemented. Before the end of the year, projects worth $3 billion should be launched,” she said.

However, there are also bumps in the road regarding Russo-Saudi relations: Riyadh and Moscow have completely different approaches toward Syria and Iran. On the other hand, the two countries have similar views regarding the resolution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

“Moscow and Riyadh have similar positions on the resolution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict,” Deputy Chairperson of the Council of the Federation Ilyas Umakhanov told RIA Novosti.

“As for Syria, we have very serious differences regarding the fate of [Syrian] President Bashar al-Assad, but Russia and Saudi Arabia agree that there can be no military solution to this crisis,” he said.

According to Matvienko, Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud may visit Russia by the end of 2017.

What this illustrates is that Russia has departed from its age old policy of not taking any proactive role in global affairs, now that more and more countries have grown weary and tired of the incessant warmongering from the Western side,

… and are looking for a more positive leadership that they can only find from Vladimir Putin.

Likewise, Saudi’s growing engagement with East Asia and Russia will only result to a stronger cooperation with the BRICS Alliance and ASEAN countries, and will further alienate the kingdom from the West.

They don’t want to be used as a tool again for Western terror aggression anywhere in the world.

Just a week ago, the current chairman of the ASEAN, Rodrigo went to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for an official state visit.

The  Philippine president is known for his censor-free anti-CIA sentiments in front of foreign leaders. This occasion is no exception.

Duterte’s tour to the Middle East also included visits to Bahrain and Qatar.

The geopolitical realignment continues with the recent port call to Manila by the Russian navy.

This is just a prelude to Duterte’s state visit to Russia soon.

As for Saudi Arabia, 800 U.S. families are already filing a lawsuit against it relating to the controlled demolition directed by Dick Cheney. But the former has already made its decision to leave the deplorables on their own.

Since, this realignment is a very long process, and the deplorables are still holding great positions of power, it is only wise to expect some bumps along the way.

Source*

Related Topics:

Saudi Arabia Budget Deficit for 2017 about $53bn*

Saudi Arabia Abandons Islamic Calendar as Part of Cost-Cutting Measures*

Saudi Arabia Facing Flack from both Sunni and Shia Leaders*

Greater Israel” Requires the Breaking up of Existing Arab States*

U.S. Opposed to Sovereignty of Muslim Nations*

Saudi Arabia Unleashes Frenzy of Attacks on Syrians*

Most of the Terrorists in Aleppo were Turkish, Saudi (Israeli) Officers*

U.S. – Saudi Deal to Destabilize Russia and Syria Backfires*

Moscow and Beijing Establish BRICS Monetary Transactions Framework in Gold*

Iraq Will Likely Sue U.S. Govt For 2003 Invasion Following Passage of 9/11 Bill*

Former U.S. Senate Candidate: Israel Orchestrated the 9/11 Attacks*​

Rodrigo Duterte: I am officially through with the New World Order*

Duterte Withdrawing from Useless ICC, Joining Russia-China “New Order”

 

Greeks Paid €7bn More in Taxes in 2016, as Middle-Classes Vanish and Poverty Increases*

Greeks Paid €7bn More in Taxes in 2016, as Middle-Classes Vanish and Poverty Increases*

Two out of ten Greeks paid 80% of the total income taxes last year. At the same time poverty increases: more than 340,000 households declared zero income for the tax year 2015. Data released on Thursday by the Independent Authority for Public Revenue (AADE) shows the stifling tax burden and the disproportionate allocation against the social groups that were once the middle-classes.

The data revealed that 70% of the paid taxes came from employees and pensioners who cannot hide their incomes.

  • €59.4 billion came from taxing incomes of employees and pensioners
  • €6.052 billion came from rent income
  • €4.676 billion came from business activity
  • €3.77 billions came from interests, shares etc
  • €1.25 billion came from agricultural activities

According to the data:

17.6% of the households, about one million taxpayers with annual income 20,000 euros paid 77.13% of the total taxes.

At the same time, income declarations of taxpayers with zero income increase by 34.000.

One out of ten households had not even one euro income in the tax year 2015 (tax declaration in 2016).

Five out of then households declared an annual income below 1,000 euros.

Three in ten households had an annual income of 12,000 euros.

Taxpayers with annual income 20,000-30,000 euros paid a total of 1.4 billion euros

513,509 taxpayers with annual income of 30,000 euros or over paid the lion’s share of taxes due to the state’s inability to contain tax evasion, restructure the public sector and make the necessary reforms.

Each time public finances go off course, it is taxpayers with monthly revenues of more than 2,500 euros who are forced to plug the gaps. On average, these people pay in excess of 9,200 euros in taxes per year.

In total, about 6,194,000 taxpayers declared 2015 incomes of 75.1 billion euros to the tax authorities last year. This increased to taxable revenues of 82.1 billion euros following the incorporation of assets used for the determination of undeclared incomes (known as “tekmiria”/deemed income), and the income tax due amounted to 8 billion euros.

The data illustrate that declared incomes fluctuate from year to year according to the state of the Greek economy: For example, incomes expanded when the economy stabilized in 2014, while they shrank the year after that because of the uncertainty and tough austerity measures that followed.

Declared incomes in the last five years have been as follows:

  • 89.1 billion euros in 2011
  • 80.1 billion euros in 2012
  • 71.2 billion euros in 2013
  • 76.01 billion euros in 2014
  • 75.2 billion euros in 2015.

From all this, we can conclude that Greek taxpayers’ incomes crumbled by about 17.9 billion euros in the first two years after the start of the bailout program. In particular Greek salary workers have lost taxable declared revenues of approximately 5 billion euros in the period from 2011 to 2015, while the biggest losses have been sustained by taxpayers in Attica.

For the tax year 2016 (income declaration in 2017) taxpayers will pay more because of the tax basis from 9,636 last year to 8,636 annual income. Unmarried taxpayer with monthly income 700 euros will pay 200 euros more in taxes when compared to previous years.

Should Greece fail to reach the targets in 2018, another broadening of the tax basis lies ahead. From 8,636 euros currently it will fall down to 5,636. The current tax rate for employees and pensioners is 22%.

PS Taxing the poor is the perfect recipe of IMF’s neo-liberal policies.

Source*

Related Topics:

There is a new U.S. “Marshall Plan” for Greece*

What Will Unfold as Greece Hires a Rothschild as Debt Advisor*

In Greece Shock for Cancer Patients: “Life expectancy” Needed for Prescription Medication*

Greece Bans Cash*

E.U. Throws Greece and Refugees to the Sharks*

Greece is now a Colony of the E.U.*

Europe’s Vindictive Privatization Plan for Greece*

How German and French Banks Helped Bankrupt Greece*

Americans aren’t Filling their Taxes this Year says IRS*

E.U. Desperate to Raises Taxes Starts Cashless Society Project November 2017*

E.U. Passed Tax ID Numbers for Everyone*

A Call for National Tax Disobedience*

Bolivian U.N. Ambassador Blasts U.S. for Another Illegal Attack*

Bolivian U.N. Ambassador Blasts U.S. for Another Illegal Attack*

‘The United States has not only unilaterally attacked,’ said Sacha Llorenti, ‘the United States has become that investigator, has become the prosecutor, has become the judge, has become the jury.’

By Lauren McCauley

“I believe that we must absolutely remember these pictures,” said the Bolivian ambassador. “After the invasion there were 1 million deaths and it launched a series of atrocities in that region.” (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

 

Wielding an image of former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell during his infamous “weapons of mass destruction” speech that helped make the case for the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, Sacha Llorenti, the Bolivian ambassador to the United Nations, blasted the United States for its unilateral military action against Syria saying it is “vital to remember what history teaches us.”

Llorenti, whose country holds a non-permanent seat on the U.N. Security Council (UNSC) and had called the emergency meeting, said that while members of the body were “discussing and demanding the need for an independent and impartial investigation” into Tuesday’s chemical attack on civilians in Idlib, Syria, the United States was “preparing—once again—to carry out a unilateral attack.

“The United States has not only unilaterally attacked,” Llorenti said,

“the United States has become that investigator, has become the prosecutor, has become the judge, has become the jury. Whereas the investigation would have allowed us to establish an in an objective manner who is responsible for the attacks, this is an extreme, extreme violation of international law.”

The reason for the UNSC, he explained, is that it has “developed instruments of international law to precisely prevent a situation where the most powerful attack the weakest with impunity and to ensure a balance in the world.”

Llorenti further observed that throughout history there were “many episodes in which…various powers…have acted unilaterally and violently. But that it happened once again does not mean that the U.N. must accept it.”

“On Wednesday, February 5, 2003, the U.S. Secretary of State came to this room and came to present to us, according to his own words, “convincing proof that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq,'” the ambassador said.

Then, holding the image of Powell, Llorenti continued:

“I believe that we must absolutely remember these pictures…We were told that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and this was the motivation for the invasion. After the invasion there were 1 million deaths and it launched a series of atrocities in that region. Could we talk about [the Islamic State] if that invasion had not taken place? Could we talk about the serious and horrendous attacks in various parts of the world if that illegal invasion had not taken place? I believe it is vital to remember what history teaches us.”

Watch below:

For her part, Nikki Haley, President Donald Trump’s ambassador to the U.N., called the deployment of 59 Tomahawk missiles a “measured step,” and said that the U.S. is “prepared to do more, but we hope it will not be necessary.”

 

Source*

Related Topics:

Media Goes Quiet as Russia Exposes U.S. Lies at Security Council*

Bolivia: Life Exists Beyond the Washington Concensus

Bolivia with Newfound Economic Independence Rejects Rothschild Banks*

Former U.K. Ambassador Refers to the West Returning to their Own Vomit

Inside Syria Life Goes on*

Rothschild Demands Western Nations Invade Syria*

Top Rothschild Bankster Pushes Corrupt Communist to Lead U.N.*

Syria Shoots Down 34 of 59 Cruise Missiles, Russia to Upgrade System*

Cheney, Rothschild, Murdoch Violate International Law By Drilling for Oil in Syria*

U.N. Confirmed Syrian Rebels, Not Assad, Were Using Sarin*

Trump Bombed Syria because they Didn’t Want Peace*

U.S. Deploying Thousands More Ground Troops to Kuwait to Fight in Iraq and Syria*

U.S. Admits Using Radioactive Weapons in Syria that Left Thousands of Iraqi Babies Deformed*

 

Nine Ancient Maps that SHOULD NOT exist in Western Eyes*

Nine Ancient Maps that SHOULD NOT exist in Western Eyes*

Among numerous findings throughout the years, researchers around the globe have stumbled upon certain discoveries that should have never been made. Some of these discoveries directly contradict the beliefs and ‘tales’ set forth by mainstream scholars about mankind, its origins and ancient civilizations that inhabited our planet in the distant past.

It has become a popular belief that ancient civilizations across the globe were in fact much more advanced than what mainstream researchers are crediting them for. Numerous maps discovered in the past are clear indications that the story told today by scholars is incomplete, and there are numerous missing links in our history. These ‘missing links’ are being put together by these incredible ancient maps that prove mankind inhabited our planet much longer than what mainstream scholars believe.

However, the existence of these incredible maps proves that in the distant past, ancient explorers had an extremely well-developed cartography system comparable in precision with the one we have today. The maps are also evidence that ancient mankind knew the exact shape and size of the Earth, contrary to popular beliefs, and used spherical trigonometry, and precise and elaborate mathematical calculations, as if thousands of years ago, an unknown civilization undertook a global-scale project of mapping the entire planet like no one has ever done before.

A reproduction of the Zeno map from a 1793 book. Source: Wikimedia Commons

 

One of the most intriguing maps is the Zeno Map. Published around 1380, the enigmatic maps accurately depicts the coasts of modern-day countries such as Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, and Scotland. Mysteriously, this ancient map also depicts the EXACT latitude and longitude of a number of islands on our planet. This is a huge enigma since the device necessary to measure the longitude, the chronometer, was not invented until 1765. If this isn’t mysterious enough, the Zeno map also depicts Greenland free of glaciers, meaning that somehow, someone charted it prior to the Ice Age.

The Camerio map. Created in 1502, this map does not depict unusual features as other maps do but it has one very strange detail. The Camerio map uses a spherical grid, even though people in the Middle Ages still believed our planet was in fact… flat.

Map of Ibn Ben Zara (1487) Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

 

Another mind boggling map is without a doubt the Iehudi Ibn ben Zara map. Created in 1487, the map displays remnants of glaciers in Britain, but also extremely detailed depictions of islands in the Mediterranean and Aegean seas. Today, these islands still exist, but due to rising water levels, these are now underwater.

Hacı Ahmet’s Map of the World: A complete and perfect map describing the whole world Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

 

The Hadji Ahmed map, published in 1559, shows incredibly accurate delineations of the western coast of Northern America and Antarctica. What is even more incredible is the fact that this ancient map shows a land bridge connection Siberia and Alaska, indicating it originated from a time when the bridge was still present.

Published in 1737 by Philippe Buache, the Buache map is believed to have been created with the use of much more ancient maps. This chart displays Antarctica well before the ‘icy’ continent was in fact discovered. Interestingly, like many other ancient maps, this too accurately depicts Antarctica with no ice. The Bouche Map also accurately positioned the Canary Island. The map issued in 1737 also displays the correct outline of the underwater plateau on which the islands are located. This means that the source of the map used to create it is based on a survey of the shape before glaciers melted and ocean levels rose. Even more interesting is the fact that the Buache Map depicts the waterway which divides the continent of Antarctica into two landmasses.

Created in 1502, the Harry King Chart displays northern Siberian rivers emptying into the Arctic ocean which is now under ice. Interestingly, it also depicts glacial remains in the Baltic countries and accurately depicts the ancient Suez Canal. This incredible map also depicts what today are huge islands in Southeastern parts of Asia, but joined together by land, indicating that geologically speaking, the maps were created when the Earth looked much differently.

The Map of the North by Ptolemy depicts glacial sheets moving across south-central Greenland. It also depicts glaciers retreating from modern-day Germany (north) and parts of southern Sweden. Another map indicating a different time on Earth.

Another interesting map is the King Jaime World Chart. It was created in 1502, and accurately depicts parts of the Sahara Desert displaying it much differently than it is today: with fertile land, huge lakes rivers and what appear to be ancient cities. In fact, Sahara was, in the distant past, a fertile land filled with animal life and forests.

The Oronce Finé World Map created in 1534, is an early cordiform chart which displays features of Antarctica when the continent was not covered by Ice. While it is yet another map which shows the continent before it was officially ‘found’, the chart also shows continent rivers, valleys, and coastlines while also depicting the approximate location of what is the South Pole today.

Source*

Related Topics:

Ancient Pyramids in Antartica’s Landscape and the Piri Reis Map*

“Deadly Facts”: How So-Called “Objectivity” Created a Culture of Conformity*

How History Dies in the Syllabus*

Hidden Human History*

Global Power and the History of Trusts

Why the West is Terrified of Muslims Reading History…*

Secret History of the British People*

Erasing a People from History: Australian Pygmies*

When Lies about your People are Taught to you in History Class*

The Hidden History of the Human Race*

Re-writing European History for the Classroom*

Kenya: No Matter How Much ‘they’ Re-write History Evidence Says It Ain’t Necessarily So*

Censorship of History Curriculum: Students Employ Civil Disobedience*

An Escalation in the Fight against Censorship of History*

When the Sahara was Green*

Syria Shoots Down 34 of 59 Cruise Missiles, Russia to Upgrade System*

Syria Shoots Down 34 of 59 Cruise Missiles, Russia to Upgrade System*

By Gordon Duff, Dr. Bassam Barakat

Breaking:  Since putting this story up, Syrian officials agreed to talk to us about this.  The reason this story was withheld is explained below, but as “the gloves are off,” we are going public.  America’s failure to upgrade its cruise missiles, to harden them against modern ECM and to assume that Syria was defenseless is only part of the story.  We might remind readers of the USS Donald Cook as well.  America is lucky it didn’t have to tow its two destroyers home, after all, it has happened before.

Tomahawk cruise missile fell, guidance system disabled, 40 miles from target

 

The last time the U.S. went against Russian ECM, 27 crew members of the USS Donald Cook asked to be “relieved.” Mutiny is a better term.  Then there is this epic fail, the RQ 170 Lockheed drone that ECM brought down over Iran:

Below is a photo submitted by the Russian Centre for Feril Studies FCFS, of the system used to down U.S. cruise missiles:

Confirmed as true through personal sources in the Syrian security services.  Electronic countermeasures were used along with missile interceptions.  The missiles were fired over Lebanon in order to avoid Russia’s S400 system or the possibility that a ground based cruise system would take out America’s boats.

Five missiles fell in the surrounding villages, killing 5 civilians and injuring 20.  Other missiles fell into the Mediterranean where they could be viewed from the decks of the ships that launched them.  

Since President Trump ordered retaliation against VT and its staff, partly for our story destroying the White Helmets to a huge international audience and partly to warn us over a blackmail tape issue, there have been changes.  VT is “last man standing.”  We are sitting on a number of stories, but there is a difference between a story and something legitimate.  What is below is legitimate and now confirmed by our own sources inside Syria.

Veterans Today contacted the Syrian Ministry of Information regarding the bizarre news that 34 Tomahawk cruise missiles had simply vanished.  VT had even surmised that some may well have been used against other targets, even going as far as to suggest a possible conspiracy to hit Palmyra to aid the ISIS attack there.

A possible confirmation is simply the number fired, 59.  This is what would be required to overwhelm the Russian air defense system based on the number of launchers, both S300 and S400 and other “cruise-capable” systems out there.  Russia would keep their best “in the tubes” for any possible air attack, just in case the cruise missile launch was a lead to empty air defense tubes for a B 52 or similar “big show” raid.

In May 2013, Syria sunk an Israeli submarine.  In 2015, Iraq captured an Israeli general, some claim he was a colonel, and they sent a copy of his ID card to us when I suggested they were making it up.

The real war, what goes on, is very different to that what is reported.  Syria, Iraq, Iran and even Russia “under-report” events that would embarrass the U.S. or Israel to the point of humiliation.  Both sides have had massive failures, kept secret by the other, and many of the stories VT publishes that others don’t are of this order.

VT was, at one time, a “free zone” for publishing deniable intelligence, kind of a safety valve as it were.  Trump ended that when he went after us, and in doing so, used military assets directly against a media platform for failing to carry “fake news,” the new “law of the land according to Trump.”

Before we get into the explanation for the video, I would have a word or two.  Photographs showing the dead from the gas attack are being offered for cash, showing the dead getting back up and walking away.  We can’t verify this but I will mention this is going on.

Past that we are told that Japan is holding a copy of a Trump blackmail tape, and that this relates to the confrontation with North Korea.  If the tape is real, and we have been given the name of the GOP official who has the other copy, someone not well known to the public, then the idea of “Deep State” and blackmail is to be considered.

Russia’s “Trump attack” graphic

 

If this is a conspiracy theory, and it may well be, then Trump was planning this all along, which is my belief.  The tape involves the murder of a minor.  It may well not exist except that when it was offered to us, at a price we can’t pay, VT was taken down by presidential order.  

Press TV/Tehran: Since the firing of 59 Tomahawk missiles on Friday against a Homs aerodrome, a question never ceases to return in all analyzes: 23 of the 59 US cruise missiles have reached their target. And the rest of the gear? What happened to 34 other Tomahawks fired from two U.S. warships deployed in the Mediterranean? The reply is the video that Al-Alam is sending this Saturday: the Syrian DCA intercepted and destroyed the 34 Tomahawk missiles before they reached the Shayrat air base

The information highlights the decree of the Syrian Presidency for the interception and destruction in flight of American missiles at the minute when the attack began. Other analysts note the role of the Russian radars that would immediately take office after the firing of the first missile. Are these S-300 Syrians or Russian S-400 deployed in Syria? Why did you hide this “scathing riposte” and talk about it only two days after the attack?

The video published by Syrian military sources proves one thing: if Syria and its Russian ally avoided publishing it in the hours following the US strikes, it was to avoid an escalation. But in view of the intense campaign of threats against Syria and Russia, there may no longer be any reason to disclose “the weaknesses of the US missiles” and “the power of the Syrian DCA”.

The United States announced this Sunday by the voice of White House spokesman Sean Spicer not to have warned Russia beforehand of the attack they were going to launch against the Syrian territory. Asked by Fox News, the spokesman said that “we had no contact with the Russian political leaders,” which means that the U.S. did indeed want to “take the Russians short”. But the surprise seems not to have “worked too well”!

Analysts also claim that Russia, whose warships have just returned to the Mediterranean, has shown restraint to avoid a “ballistic war” that could have led to a “nuclear conflict”.

Appendix I

Source: http://firil.net/?p=3694

Submitted as technical commentary, machine translated
http://www.veteranstoday.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/ScreenHunter_1293-Apr.-09-17.47-640×294.jpg

 

Source*

Related Topics:

Trump Bombed Syria because they Didn’t Want Peace*

Trump-Israel Struggling to Save ISIS to divide and Conquer Syria and Iraq*

World War 3: Trump Begins Paying His Penance to Rothschilds*

Cheney, Rothschild, Murdoch Violate International Law By Drilling for Oil in Syria*

White Helmets Killing Babies in PR Stunt to Start War in Syria*

U.N. Confirmed Syrian Rebels, Not Assad, Were Using Sarin*

Pentagon Trained Al Qaeda in Syria to Use Chemical Weapons*

Syrian chemical False Flag use of Dummies Identified*