Tag Archives: Russia

Trump’s Visit to Europe: War!

Trump’s one week tour to Europe, starting 11 July in Brussels, marks a watershed in Trump’s attack on the liberal world order. It is now clear that Trump is at war with Europe. The tour could have been a victory lap for the US President and that is how other US Presidents in the past (including Obama) played it.

Not Trump.

The trip started with a 2-day NATO meeting followed by a “working visit” in the UK – not an official trip as usual, London was not included.  The weekend was spent in Scotland, presumably to relax in the golf properties he owns. And the trip is to culminate with a one-on-one meeting with Vladimir Putin, Russia’s autocratic leader that Trump has often supported. Before joining the G7 meeting in Canada last month – a meeting that turned into a disaster -, he called for Russia’s return to the G7.

To assess Trump’s trip to Europe, one needs to remember that Putin is a man determined to bring down NATO and destroy the European Union. He sees them both as the enemy and the Kremlin constantly pushed that propaganda line at home and abroad.

NATO Meeting: Chaos

The moment he  arrived in Brussels , he lost no time in dressing down NATO’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg over breakfast:

Extraordinary outburst. “Germany is totally controlled by Russia”, this is “not appropriate”, he thunders.  Note Stoltenberg’s reply, trying to argue that with NATO “we stand together” – an argument that gets nowhere with Trump who has no appreciation for either collaboration or allies. Trump sees nothing beyond what he calls the “energy” issue that has turned it a “captive of Russia”: Seventy percent of Germany’s energy comes from Russia now that it has given up its traditional sources (coal and nuclear). And, he points out, the German-Russian gas pipeline consortium is headed by a former German Chancellor.

That last part is true, of course. He is referring to former German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder who is a top executive at the Russian-government controlled company (Gazprom) that is currently building Nord Stream 2 Pipeline under the Baltic sea to bring Russian gas to Germany.

But it’s not going just to Germany, as he implies.

Read the rest on Impakter, and the stunning strings of insults Trump managed to throw at UK Prime Minister Theresa May, click here.

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2017: The End of the American Century?

In this article, I try to figure out where we’re going, after the tsunami  brought about by Trump. I am not optimistic but I’m not as pessimistic as some, as you’ll see if you read the article to the end…Happy 2018, we need to continue the resistance, I’m convinced the pre-Trump world order can be revived and American leadership regained!

HOW AMERICA LOST WORLD LEADERSHIP

IN 2017, AMERICA ABRUPTLY CHANGED FACE. IT BECAME A DEEPLY DIVIDED COUNTRY NO LONGER INTERESTED IN WORLD LEADERSHIP. THE QUESTION IS: WHO WILL DOMINATE NEXT, CHINA, EUROPE, RUSSIA? OR IS AN AMERICAN RENAISSANCE POSSIBLE?

Trump’s inaugural speech with its America First message shook the world. And he has kept it up with alarming tweets, insulting and threatening people and countries, sowing confusion among America’s allies and foes. His emotional and erratic tweeting may not add up to a credible foreign policy, he is, in his first year, the least popular President in US history and has signed fewer laws than Obama, yet, with support from the Republican Congress, he has brought deep change: He has successfully turned America in on itself and ushered an age of small government and Big Business.

American institutions are now in the hands of the Republican party. Control over the Supreme Court was achieved with Trump’s appointment of Judge Gorsuch and federal district courts are now filling up with young judges wedded to conservative views. Federal environmental protection regulations are dismantled, the coal and fuel industries can do as they please, the environment and public health be damned.

The tax overhaul benefits primarily the Republican party’s backers, big corporations and multi-millionaires. It also comes with a provision to drill for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. And this on top of huge rollbacks in natural reserves, opening up to private exploitation over 2 million acres in Utah.

The only area that has resisted the Trump-Republican onslaught is Obamacare, but not for long. As Trump said at the GOP tax bill celebration, “we peeled Obamacare because we got rid of the individual mandate which was terrible” which is, as he clarified, “a primary source of funding of Obamacare”.

Clever. One can only hope that the Republican party will come up with a solution for the millions of Americans slated to lose coverage. So far, there is none on offer. Foreign observers (myself included) marvel that America has still not accepted the principle of free universal access to healthcare, first launched in Germany in 1883.

Read the rest on Impakter, click here.

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The Key for Peace: The Indispensable Role of the United Nations

Once again, one of my articles, just published on Impakter, with a remarkable introduction from the Editor (he is a millennial, a man deeply concerned about the issues of our time, value-driven like his whole generation, and this too is reason for hope in a better future). This is the beginning, to read the rest, go on Impakter, click here.

THE KEY FOR PEACE: THE INDISPENSABLE ROLE OF THE UNITED NATIONS

on 16 November, 2015 at 19:00

Note from the Editor: In these hours, following the tragic killing of innocents in Paris and Beirut,  our thoughts are with the people of France and Lebanon.

Impakter is a global publication. Our team comes from every corner of our beloved World. We represent the citizens of the World. Furthermore, our aim is to express that through this publication. Today we want this thought to reach higher than ever before. 

We believe that the current events taking place during the G20 could potentially be a significant milestone in our human history. A unprecedented event. The G20 could potentially regroup all the citizens of the World.  All united into delivering a safer and united future for all the generations to come.

The road is full of challenges, but  we will all walk through it under one flag, that of Peace. This is without a doubt a key turning point in our history. Like the Phoenix, we are to be reborn from the ashes of our World’s darkest hours.

Now, more then ever, we must move upwards and onwards. 

This is a first analysis of what might be happening next.

LESSONS LEARNED FROM THE PARIS ATTACKS – THE WAY FORWARD

Once the United Nations Security Council is unblocked, we can hope to see an end to the Syria crisis. So far, because of Russia’s repeated use of its veto power at the Security Council, supported by China, its usual ally, the international community has not been able to move forward in a concerted fashion. Syria, after three years of a devastating civil war, is now pounded by Russian and American forces and their respective allies, but they haven’t agreed on common objectives: Russia supports Bashir al Assad, the United States targets Daesh, a.k.a ISIS or IS. But now things are changing.

On Sunday 15 November, at the G20 meeting in Turkey, a major political decision was reportedly taken, a page in the difficult relationship between Russia and the West appears to have been turned. It seems that Putin and Obama had an eye-to-eye talk that lasted half-an-hour and their meeting was caught on Turkish television.

Negotiations under the aegis of the United Nations between the Syrian opposition and the regime [meaning Bashir al Assad] and a cease-fire

A White House spokesman said afterwards…

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